Most Asked Questions


The Question I get asked the most...

Q: Are you married?
A: No...

Q: Do you cook?
A: No...

My thoughts... Are the two questions related? Hee, hee :)

Q: Is your hair naturally curly?
A: Yes
Q: No, really?
A: Yes, yes, yes.

Q: Do you get lonely?
A: Not too much.

They love my hair here. I guess it's never want what you are born with. They don't understand when I try to explain to them that I always wanted straight shiny hair like theirs. They look at me like...Why?

Jenny and Cindy always look at my eyelashes in fascination. Ohhh...Wow...They say. It's really amusing. If I dare wear mascara they go even more crazy. Which I don't all that often. I just shake my head at how funny it all is...I told them once...Don't be silly...Have you seen yourselves?...You two are beautiful.



My body is flooded
With the flame of Love.
My soul lives in
A furnace of bliss.

Love's fragrance
Fills my mouth,
And fans through all things
With each outbreath.

~ Kabir

I didn't talk much about my demo last Saturday. Never have I practiced having many people watching. Some students even dragged their significant others to it. Hahaha. I will say I had an interesting experience come over me during that is hard to explain or put into words...maybe I will leave it for another post...but something changed after that practice...

However, it could have been a culmination of having sat in silence for a long period at the waterfall. As I sat there, I consciously let go of three things that were holding me back. I let them go...and asked for help with the follow through.

Sometimes you just don't know if what you ask for will come to light...but with faith being all I have at the moment, I don't see any reason why it would not. If what we desire brings us closer to our own truth...if it means a shedding of skin...or a lightening of the load we've chosen to carry but no longer need serves something greater...

Typhoon passed through just fine. I rather got used to the strong gusts of wind, and the roar of the rain all afternoon into the evening...on into the early morning. Being held up inside, I made some major headway into The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle...a mesmerizing read...check it out...I'd like to look into more books by Haruki Murakami.

Typhoon Fung-Wong


Typhoon Fung-Wong is coming tonight.

means Phoenix in Chinese.

They tell me it will be stronger than the last. Something tells me I'm gonna have to get used to these wretched storms.

Waterfall in the Mountains

Yesterday morning I headed up into the mountains with a new friend, Frida. An inspiring woman with a great amount of depth, and sincerity. She's lived in Taiwan on and off for 3 years. Being born and raised in South Africa, I've enjoyed hearing about her life there...full of struggle, and triumph. Which admirably, has taken her to a place of strength today. I think we both came to the realization that we are cut from the same cloth. Too bad, however, she will be leaving Taiwan soon. An adventurer herself, she is off to Kathmandu, then eventually make it back home to South Africa. A place she feels she must face again. She's on a mission. We had one of the most inspiring conversations. There's a passion...a destiny she feels she must fulfill. It's rare when you meet someone who you know you will hear about one day, because you can see it in their can feel it coming from their soul. I'd like to go to Africa one day.

On motor-scooters we ventured up into the mountains. So beautiful. Jungle mountains I like to call them. Once we made it to the check point, it was a long and arduous decent. I even had a bit of a tumble. However, it was well worth it. Like coming into an oasis. No one else was there...only the two of us, and the roar of the waterfall. We didn't even speak for over an hour...we just took in the view in our own way. It was nice. When we finally did speak it almost seemed silly...why? Why say anything when you see such beauty?

I'm experiencing Taiwan as a hidden jewel. Not being marketed as a travel destination as much as other places in Asia, there are places like this and more, one can venture off to with little or no people. Frida told me she felt it was a good thing. There is much for me to see.

Lotus in Bloom


A journey brings us face to face with ourselves.

Is there any greater journey than love?

Sometimes home is just a feeling.

Did you know that a lotus flower bares fruit or a seed that one can eat? I had no idea...and it tastes wonderful. I tried it in soup that had a slightly sweet flavor...simply divine.

Several days ago we ventured out to see where they grow acres of lotus flowers. They were so beautiful. It was almost as if each flower was enticing me to take a picture of it...look at me!...look how I vibrate! I'm beginning to wonder what is more heavenly than a lotus flower at full bloom...

Mango-Banana Smoothie !


For the raindrop, joy is in entering the river...

Travel far enough into sorrow, tears turn into sighing;

When after heavy rain, the storm clouds disperse,

Is it not that they've wept themselves clear to the end?

~ Indian poet, Ghalib

Just found my new favorite smoothie and banana...too good for words. :)
It makes me wanna smile.

I just picked up The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Japanese author Haruki Murakami at a local bookstore that has a section of books in English. My thoughts were why not check out authors from Asia. Murakami comes highly recommended.

Now that I'm used to the climate. I love, love, love it.

Finally manged to venture further out on my motor-scooter...into the craziness. Ha...and it wasn't that bad. Here you have to drive with your intuition...your awareness has to be on a higher alert. The interesting part is that I haven't seen one accident. Even though there is one honks...and I haven't felt any undue aggressiveness or aggravation from anyone...and believe me...I've made more than enough mistakes to merit it...hahaha.

Now I'm beginning to observe what Lao-Tzu meant about the benefit of having less rules.

Practice Makes Perfect ?


"With great simplicity. The greatest compression of time is NOW! The greatest compression of perception is innocence. The great compression of intent is LOVE. Just be here now. Do what needs to be done without hesitation. Don't add conditions that are not necessary. Don't invent realities that are unsupportable by your nature or conditions. Don't fix things that are not broken. Get to the point. Use what you have, including all your available tools, awareness, and talents. Honor nature. Be efficient. Facilitate a better 'fit' with in the whole for everything and everyone valuable to your life. Eliminate extras, trim excess, and distractions while focusing on or producing more of what you really want and value! LIVE! That is compression right here right now. It will take you back to the center of yourself ~ your own 'zero point'."

~ One of my many favorite excerpts from the book Love without End, by Glenda Green

Does practice make perfect? I say yes. But, not the perfect I've always known or aspired to be. Perfect in my previous experience always had the underlying unsatisfaction with what IS. A striving for some elusive picture that was invariably out of my grasp... something in the near or distant future. Something I felt I needed to BE, to be happy or fulfilled. Something I felt would complete me.

The paradox is that we are already perfect...experiencing exactly what we need to experience... and, yoga practice is a perfect place to experience this. Starting from a place knowing that everything is perfect. I've got my breath...I've got my dristi...I've got the most beautiful dance of postures to play with. Coming from this place has made practice much more inspiring...and isn't it funny, when we get caught up in the dance...everything we were working so hard towards seems to just happen. Those challenging postures have a way of blossoming, and unfolding.

I still have my frustrating practices from time to time...but even in the frustration there is something for me to learn or something more for me to let go of...which only help me on the path. Perfect.

However, accepting that everything is perfect, or as it should be, doesn't necessarily give us license to be careless or apathetic about life or giving away our deepest heartfelt desires. Just taking the needed steps in the right direction, being fully present and alive with each process along the way has much to offer us. I'm still learning this...still practicing...still learning to let go each day. I have found the importance of being fully alive for each new dawn.

But, isn't it when we let go...even just a little bit...we feel more free...more alive...more spacious for new things to grow within. Don't need more from the outside. Only need to discover more on the inside.

Coffee Plant


You talk when you cease to be at peace with your thoughts; and when you can no longer dwell in the solitude of your heart you live in your lips, and sound is a diverson and a pastime. And in much of your talking thinking is half murdered. For thought is a bird of space, that in a cage of words may indeed unfold its wings but cannot fly.

~ The Prophet, p. 60

I've been lost in a sea of feelings lately. Not all bad...not all good...can't judge it, because it is what it is. Sometimes I wonder why I am so damn sensitive. I'm not talking about hurt feelings. It's other things. It's a mystery on how to handle it in a manner that works for me. Maybe I need to journal more. These are ideas I'm throwing out there. I guess if I had the correct system I wouldn't be asking these questions at the moment.

I'm supposed to be doing a yoga demo at the studio this Saturday evening. Not sure what my feelings are regarding this. I agreed because Mr. Wang felt it was a good way to introduce myself to the community, and for new students interested in Ashtanga Yoga to see full Primary Series. I agreed. I'll treat it like any other practice. I guess its the way they do things here...which is fine...I take it in stride...just go with the flow. I'm still gonna go on a killer hike that morning with a group of students. They were surprised...they asked me...what about your demo? I tried to explain in a why they could understand that for me it will be practice, while it just so happens, others will be watching. Not sure if they understood. They may think I'm a bit strange. Hahaha...

Practice has been good...and like I've said before...extremely sweaty. First several weeks I stuck with Primary Series to get my body back into balance. Which helped. The last week, I've been doing 2nd...with no 3rd Series add ons. I'm easing myself into my need to rush. With the climate, it has helped to take it a bit slower. No biggie. Everyday I feel more acclimated, and will soon feel ready to play around with a bit of 3rd after 2nd. Not that it really matters.

I've been dealing with a a tight hip flexor/psoas muscle on my left side...and on my right shoulder. Very strange. My shoulder simply feels like its a bit off balance or out of alignment. Wonder if there is a good chiropractor around here? Seriously...I feel like I need someone to snap me back into place. Could be the extremely hard bed I've been sleeping on. It puts the 'F' in firm...let me tell ya. Now, I know I could sleep just about anywhere on anything.

Fruit I Cannot Name


Monday...already? Time has been flying by. Hard to believe I will have been here a month already this coming Saturday. Doesn't seem that long.

I've been enjoying teaching. I've been enjoying the students. I've slowly gotten into a rhythm.

My rhythm has been practice, teach, study...practice, teach, study...practice, teach, study. Not too bad of a rhythm to get into. Start practice before dawn...Teach a few classes during the day...and study. I'm attempting to immerse myself into another interpretation of The Yoga Sutras...among other things. And, of course, there are a few other random things mixed in there as well. Always gotta leave space for a bit of adventure, and whatever life brings to the table.

I enjoyed seeing Batman: Dark Night the other day. Went with Elephant's 12-year-old son...suitably named Baby Elephant...very cute kid...he practices his English with me.

Christian Bale was everything I could I've asked for and more. Hahahaha. Silly me.

The sky is so blue here. Especially after all the rain we received the past week. Hasn't been quite as humid since the typhoon passed...what a welcome relief.

View of My Apartment Building


Practice nonaction.

Work without doing.

Taste the tasteless.

Magnify the small, increase the few.

Reward bitterness with care.
See simplicity in the complicated.

Achieve greatness in little things.

Take on difficulties while they are still easy;

do great things while they are still small.

The sage does not attempt anything very big,
and thus achieves greatness.

If you agree too easily, you will be little trusted;

because the sage always confronts difficulties,
he never experiences them.

~ The Tao Te Ching, 63rd verse

Typhoon Part Duex


"The Law That Marries All Things"

The cloud is free only
go with the wind.

The rain is free only
in its gathering together,

in its downward courses,
in its rising into the air.

In law is rest

if you love the law,

if you enter singing into
as water in its descent.

I take that back about the typhoon. It came through last night...and it raged, and raged...and raged. I couldn't help but feel a bit lonely as I lay there listening to the angry storm. It's in times like those when I wish someone were with me.

The next day I was told that it was a fairly weak typhoon...hmmmm...what the hell is a strong one gonna be like? I can't even imagine.

Anyway...after nearly 36 hours of rain and storm...I feel good...I feel okay. With my solitude, much has come up to the surface. My time here is turning out to be invaluable. Not only on the level with teaching...but for my personal growth, and experience. Emotions...stuff that I haven't allowed myself to feel are passing through...and it's all good. At this point I've learned the importance of being present with need to run.

On a lighter note...I'm gonna see Batman tomorrow night...sweet...Christian I need to say more?


Happy Birthday to a living master and teacher Sri K. Pattabhi Jois

Chiayi Lake


In the entire ten directions of the Buddha's universe
There is only one way.

When we see clearly, there is no difference in the teachings.

What is there to lose? What is there to gain?

If we gain something, it was there from the beginning.

If we lose anything, it is hidden nearby.


Well, the typhoon didn't bring the thrill I was looking for. We got a little of it, but I think most of it is headed toward China from what I understand. It has already rained 3 or 4 times, and it's only 2:00 pm...still feeling it. I was told that typhoon season has just begun...lasting from July to October...and this was the first one to come in toward Taiwan. Not a very strong one...but still, enough to bring in strong winds and rain.

I've been getting into the grove with Mysore class. It's amazing how, when observing, you can get a feel for a practitioner's personality by the way they approach the practice. With very little language used, I feel I can then approach the students on a more intuitive level.

Small world...I have an expatriate who attends my beginner's classes regularly from the U.S...and he was actually born in Dayton, Ohio, and spent some time as a child in Columbus. He came to Taiwan over 5 years ago as a missionary...met his wife here...and decided to settle on the island. He always fills me in on fun and interesting facts about Taiwan. Which is nice...and it's nice to be able to talk to someone who clearly understands what I'm saying from time to time. Hahaha. :)

It really hasn't been too much of an issue for me regarding the language. Most people know at least a little bit of English. As for me though...being a lazy American...I know no other language well enough to speak at least fluently. Really...if I ever have children, they're gonna learn another language. Tomorrow, I plan on finding some type of program or book to get me started on learning some Mandarin. I mean, I should at least make an effort. Its important. The other thing that can be a bit daunting is reading the Chinese characters...hahahaha...where do you even begin?

Practice has been good. I've been able to get up pretty darn early without any problems. I've gotten used to the heat and humidity...which means I may take it a bit slower, as to not burn myself out...but the intensity is still there. I don't think the weather has made me any more flexible...I just sweat more. Some of that could be that I'm a bit dehydrated however...Honestly though, it made my time practicing in India feel cool and sweat-less in comparison.

Tomorrow is Moon day...Saturday, rest day...nice.

Aww...Who Can Resist ?

My little niece Elia is growing up. Awww.



"Only as a spiritual warrior can one withstand the path of knowledge. A warrior cannot complain or regret anything. His life is an endless challenge and challenges cannot be possibly be good or bad. Challenges are simply challenges. The basic difference between an ordinary man and a warrior is that a warrior takes everything as a challenge, while an ordinary man takes everything as a blessing or a curse."

~Don Juan

They tell me a typhoon is coming. Not to worry, I'm close to the coast, but not that close, so there will be plenty of rain coming our way starting tonight. Typhoon, Cyclone,'s all the same right? Just matters on the geography I suppose. Then we also have tropical depressions, tropical storms and the like. Who can keep up with all the various classifications of storms and weather patterns...especially when in the tropics.

I came across the following videos from a fellow blogger. Which I thought were pretty interesting and funny. Then it got me thinking...

Maybe it's because I've been on a television fast for the past 3 weeks...but this video cracked me up.

More Beautiful Views of Chiayi


The person who, being really on the Way, falls upon hard times in the world, will not, as a consequence, turn to that friend who offers him refuge and comfort and encourages their old self to survive. Rather, he will seek out someone who will faithfully and inexorably help him to risk himself, so that he may endure the difficulty and pass courageously through it. Only to the extent that a person exposes himself over and over again to annihilation, can that which is indestructible be found within them. In this daring lies dignity and the spirit of true awakening.

~Karlfried von Durkheim

Remember how I mentioned taking that hike last Saturday. Well, my calf muscles finally feel normal. It was a great hike. But, wow, I wasn't expecting to get as sore as I did from it. One of the Mysore regulars lead the hike...who I must mention is 61 years young! Not only that, but she can catch her own ankles after drop-backs. Unbelievable. What an inspiration. Not really for just what she can still do asana wise...but, having the attitude that anything is possible at any age...why let stop you? It's great.

The Taiwanese people, at least in Chiayi, are really into their exercise. Age doesn't seem to stop them or bother them. It was very amusing when a man passed our group on the hike...some in the group new him, and they told me he was 80!! Whoa! It's funny though, when I try to guess people's ages here I alway get it way off. People seem to look much younger than they are.

Forever young. I feel that in my heart. Even when I tell people my age it is always a bit of a surprise, because I feel much younger than I am. Is that strange? It's nice to get examples of those who continue to live life fully no matter what age.

Looks like I'll be teaching several more classes. Mr. Wang ran a couple of things by me. I decided...why not? He told me it seems like I have lots of energy so I can handle it. Hahaha. We'll see how it goes.

The One Seat

If we do a little of one kind of practice and a little of another, the work we have done in one often doesn't continue to build as we change to the next. It is as if we were to dig many shallow wells instead of one deep one. In continually moving from one approach to another, we are never forced to face our own boredom, impatience, and fears. We are never brought face to face with ourselves. So we need to choose a way of practice that is deep and ancient and connected with our hearts, and then make a commitment to follow it as long as it takes to transform ourselves. This is the outward aspect of taking the one seat.
Once we have made the outward choice among the many paths available and have begun a systematic practice, we often find ourselves assailed from within by doubts and fears, by all the feelings that we have never dared experience. Eventually all of the dammed-up pain of a lifetime will arise. Once we have chosen a practice, we must have the courage and the determination to stick with it and use it in the face of all our difficulties. This is the inward aspect of taking the one seat.

~ excerpt from, A Path with Heart, by Jack Kornfield

Fisherman out at Chiayi Lake


The sage has no fixed mind;
he is aware of the needs of others.

Those who are good he treats with goodness.

Those who are bad he also treat with goodness

because the nature of his being is good.

He is kind to the kind.

He is also kind to the unkind

because the nature of his being is kindness.

He is faithful to the faithful;

he is also faithful to the unfaithful.

The sage lives in harmony with all below heaven.
He sees everything as his own self;

he loves everyone as his own child.

All people are drawn to him.

He behaves like a little child.

~ The Tao Te Ching, 49th verse

I average 2 classes a day, with a private lesson thrown and there...Mysore class lasts for 2 and a half hours in the mornings...then I teach beginner Ashtanga classes in the afternoons. The beginner classes are feeders for the Mysore sessions...the goal is to get students to learn how to self practice in a Mysore setting. It's important for students of this practice to take ownership...learning to flow...learning the sequence...strengthening the mind that comes with being self-lead. I actually have a 12 year old who attends Mysore regularly...and if he can remember the sequence...anyone can. How lucky is he to start at such a young age!

We also do the traditional lead class on Friday. This gives students the opportunity to learn the count, and gain experience in maintaining a rhythm which is an important part to the process.

I've had the opportunity to align myself with several studios in the past, teaching Ashtanga Yoga. However, I've never quite gotten the support, and freedom to teach in the traditional method as I've had here. Mr. Wang, my employer, who practices everyday with the other students in Mysore class, greatly appreciates teaching Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga in the tradition of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. Now, I'm not saying I'm a hard-line by the book type of girl...but I will say...when keeping true to the works. That is where a bit of faith, and surrender comes in. Amazing what happens when we let go to it. It's true alchemy...and of course, it's all about practice.

I ponder the significance of the method from time to time. But, then again, that's useless, it's all about the feeling, and place it can take you, if you only allow it. To not only feel connected from the inside, but to also feel, and connect to a greater energy...literally, blows my mind...Which is actually a good thing. ;)

In the end, it doesn't really matter what vehicle we long as we choose...having a bit of faith, trust, and surrender mixed in...and you have the makings of something mysterious, yet powerful.

I like the idea of staying in the mystery. Before, I alway, had to know, know, know....know, I practice observing...I practice being open, and willing...I stress the word Practice... because it's always a work in progress.

What is at rest is easily managed.

What is not yet manifest is easy to prevent.
The brittle is easily shattered;
the small is easily scattered.

Act before things exist;
manage them before there is disorder.


A tree that fills a man's embrace grows from a seedling.
A tower nine stories starts with one brick.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

Act and destroy it;
grasp it and lose it.

The sage does not act, and so is not defeated.

He does not grasp and therefore does not lose.
People usually fail when they are on the verge of success.

So give as much care at the end as at the beginning,
then there will be no failure.

The sage does not treasure what is difficult to attain.
He does not collect precious things;

he learns not to hold on to ideas.

He helps the 10,000 things find their own nature

but does not venture to lead them by the nose.

~ The Tao Te Ching, 64th verse

Didn't sleep well...Had several mosquitoes bless me with their presence as they feasted on my body all night. Ugh. With the extra bought of rain it's inevitable. More, fun. At least they aren't as bad as the one's in Thailand...I swear they had fangs...They were something evil.

Besides the mosquitoes, I really need to get my sleep schedule on track. I've been getting to bed late and getting up early, early, early...and it's catching up with me.

Ha. With the change in diet, digestion has been an issue too...Haven't felt normal in that area for a while, but they tell me it will take time to adjust. I've been eating all the different types of fruits, and veggies...even though it's healthy it can have an effect. The other day one of the Mysore students, who happens to be a Doctor in Chinese medicine, gave me a reading by touching the pulse points on my wrist. That was very interesting. Just by reading my pulse, he was able to clue me in on what's going on with my body. Fascinating.

Papaya Tree


To love fully and live well requires us to recognize finally that we do not possess or own anything--our homes, our cars, our loved ones, not even our own body. Spiritual joy and wisdom do not come through possession but rather through our capacity to open, to love more fully, and to move and be free in life.
The longing for love and the movement of love is underneath all of our activities. The happiness we discover in life is not about possessing or owning or even understanding. Instead, it is the discovery of this capacity to love, to have a loving, free, and wise relationship with all of life. Such love is not possessive but arises out of a sense of our own well-being and connection with everything. Therefore, it is generous and wakeful, and it loves the freedom of all things. Out of love, our path can lead us to learn to use our gifts to heal and serve, to create peace around us, to honor the sacred in life, to bless whatever we encounter, and to wish all beings well.

~excerpts from, A Path with Heart, by Jack Kornfield

Went on a hike today with a group of Mysore class regulars. Just like a bunch of Ashtangis...on the traditional Saturday rest day...they want to hike at 5 am in the morning. They asked if I wanted to come the day before, and I agreed. We hiked a trail in one of the it wasn't what you would call a leisure stroll. Even though I was dripping like crazy from sweat I enjoyed it. It feels good to be up at dawn, and out in nature. I love the vegetation's so beautiful and green. With all the rains...and plenty of sunshine, it makes for the perfect environment for beautiful growth.

I'm slowly getting to know the students on a personal level. Even with the cultural differences and language, we find much in common and much we can relate to. In reality, there isn't much that makes us different.

Many students worry that I am lonely, or wonder if I get bored. It's really sweet how they extend their concern. However, I haven't had much time to get bored or lonely. I felt a bit of loneliness when first getting here, but once I started teaching, and establishing a routine it hasn't been an issue.

I'm not here for entertainment or external stimulation anyway. I'm here for the work...I'm here to teach...and when I teach I loose myself...I loose sense of time...I absorb into what I'm doing...and it becomes a labor of love. Who could ask for anything more?



The rain has stopped, the clouds have drifted away,
and the weather is clear again.

If your heart is pure, then all things in your world are pure...

Then the moon and flowers will guide you along the Way.

~ Ryokan

I've been getting around on a motor-scooter. May seem simple enough, but I had my reservations about driving one of those things. I never drove one my four month stay in India. It's not so much that I didn't trust myself...even though there was some of that...but, I had trouble trusting the other drivers on the road. I never realized how strict America's traffic regulations were until traveling to India, Thailand...and now Taiwan. I mean the other day I stopped at a red light and I was the only one that halted at the intersection...while other drivers whizzed by...looking at me like...Sucka! Now I understand what one of my students meant when she said don't trust the traffic lights.

Anyway, a week ago I made my maiden should have seen Mr. Wang's face...hahaha...he was seriously worried about me as I skittishly took off for my apartment from the studio. I've gotten the hang of it. But, I'll admit, I haven't made my way down into the heart of Chiayi city...still have a bit of trepidation regarding heading down into the madness...but, I will, sooner or later.

Above is a picture of my two younger Taiwan sisters...Jenny and Cindy. They run the front desk, and seriously make me laugh and laugh like you wouldn't believe. Cindy (right) is Mr. Wang's daughter...and Jenny (left) is Mr. Wang's business partner's daughter...they call him Elephant...not sure why that is yet. Anyhow, they give me good comic relief. Cindy reluctantly makes it to Mysore class in the mornings under her father's watchful eye. She jokes with me and says she wants to learn Anusara instead. She says..."Ashtanga, too serious...Anusara, happy, happy." It makes me laugh when she goes on about it. Both girls are worried about getting muscular arms from practicing Ashtanga Yoga. Having a bit of muscle isn't considered attractive. So I joke with them asking..."So you think my arms are unattractive?" But, they insist that since I'm a foreigner it's okay for me to have muscle. They say..."Strong boyfriend." I say..."Practice and all is coming...even a boyfriend."

A truly good man is not aware of his goodness

and is therefore good.
A foolish man tries to be good
and is therefore not good.

The master does nothing,
yet he leaves nothing undone.
The ordinary man is always doing things,
yet many more are left to be done.

The highest virture is to act with out a sense of self.
The highest kindness is to give without condition.
The highest justice is to see without preference.

When the Tao is lost, there is goodness.
When goodness is lost, there is morality.
When morality is lost, there is ritual.
Ritual is the husk of true faith,
the beginning of chaos.

The great master follows his own nature
and not the trappings of life.
It is said:
"He stays with the fruit and not the fluff."
"He stays with the firm and not the flimsy."
"He stays with the true and not the false."

~ The Tao Te Ching, 38th verse

It's amazing how things have a way of coming together. In the days since coming to Taiwan, I've enjoyed just sitting back...watching...looking...observing...and, some how with that, much comes to light.

Even with teaching there isn't much that needs to be done per say...I watch...just as much if not more than I do. Then the clarity comes.

I've found a sense of ease in teaching without language. With the students not understanding much of my English. When teaching, it becomes more about doing the practice...not so much about talking, or verbalizing the practice into words. The realization has come that not much needs to be said. I've found ways to teach with my hands...I breath with the students...I find ways to communicate on a subtle level...and it works. I'm surprised just how well it works.

I start by saying a few simple things that the students can easily understand...and we get to it...because the practice speaks for itself...the practice itself brings in the wisdom, the light, and the clarity to those who practice and do the work...all I do is help move the energy along.

I feel blessed to see that light shine through...I feel continually inspired when I see students transform. Wow...I feel lucky to do what I do...and I'm filled with gratitude to be present in such a space.

Yum, Yum


The ancient masters were profound and subtle.
Their wisdom was unfathomable.
There is no way to describe it.

One can only describe them vaguely by their appearance.
Watchful, like men crossing a winter stream.
Alert, like men aware of danger.
Simple as uncarved wood.

Hollow like caves.

Yielding, like ice about to melt.
Amorphous, like muddy water.
But the muddiest water clears as it is stilled.
And out of that stillness life arises.

He who keeps the Tao does not want to be full.
But precisely because he is never full,
he can remain like a hidden sprout
and does not rush to early ripening.

~ The Tao Te Ching, 15th verse

Am I becoming a Taiwan foodie? No too sure yet...but the food here is so interesting... delicious...light, healthy, and unique. I get the question alot here...when do you eat? where do you eat? you eat? It's really cute how concerned people are about if I am eating well...or eating at all.

Yesterday evening one of the Mysore students invited me to his restaurant...a very chic Japanese place. He ordered and picked out everything, and it was all amazing...each plate was like a piece of art. He brought out about 8-9 courses. I don't think I've ever eaten so much, but at the same time I didn't feel like a beached whale afterwards.

Today, one of the students took me out to a Buddhist meditation center near the mountains for lunch to meet the monk heading the place. The drive out was nice. I was amazed at the abundance growing in the countryside. Pineapple, guava, mango, papaya, banana, dragon fruit...and other crazy and amazing things. The Earth just gives and gives...

At the meditation center everyone observes silence. So, while eating lunch, no one talked. I was amazed just how unaware I can become at times...and clumsy...hahaha...something to be reminded of...even in the simplest of we can disengage with the present moment.

The monk gave me two books on Buddhism...I was greatful for the gift. I am using much of my free time to read and study. Now I've got two more items to add to my stack.

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