Spring Week 5 Reports

From: Maria Pineda <jenny_pineda@hotmail.com>
Date: Fri, 09 Jun 2006 18:03:45 +0000
To: <nakasonr@evergreen.edu>
Subject: Thanks!!


I just finished my first week of classes at NYU.  I feel like because of my
time at Evergreen I am better prepared at NYU.  We are studying teaching
methods and theory currently, and I have been reading Dewey, Garner, Freire,
and many other authors.  Many of the students in my class cannot even begin
to comprehend such a teaching style, and I feel very fortunate for my
experiences at Evergreen.  We got into a huge discussion about grades
yesterday.  No one could believe that I did not receive grades from
Evergreen.  I want to thank you and all the recognition program for opening
my eyes to how important critical thinking and questioning is.  Otherwise I
would be like the rest of the students in my class, and headed towards
traditional methods of teaching.

I was reading about a forum in Lima this August.  If I remember right it is
at San Marcos and it is called Pensar XXXXX.  I am sorry I cannot remember..
  I will try to find more information about it, because it is about the
importance of individual thinking and self-motivation.

I am getting involved with Secular Humanism, or more specific the Center of
Inquiry.  They debated against organized religion and that humans are
basically good and have good intentions.  I am still learning about it, and
again this seems like something you may be interested in.

I hope all is well for you and your family.  Please tell everyone hi for

Hannah Busbee-Spring 2006

How do I define Reconciliation?

I define reconciliation as a return to wholeness.  I believe that by examine the different aspects of my life, such as career goals, my current and past academic work, my health, my parenting style and finding a way to integrate all the different parts of my self and my roles will enable me to find a center; a core that I can return to that will nourish myself and in turn nourish my family, co-workers, fellow students and will have a positive effect on my community. ( I plan on becoming an art therapist) I think from a mind body perspective.

What do I plan to do?

I plan to see if the following practices will assist me in being fully present in my mind and body.


I will become a vegetarian for the duration of the contract and I will give up any artificial stimulants, coffee, cigarettes, television, negative thought processes, and caffeine.  I will practice yoga daily. I will eat mostly organic foods and will eliminate all processed and pre-packaged foods. I will keep a food journal. I will interview an experienced Yoga teacher and will document the interview. I will explore different forms of meditation to determine what fits best into my lifestyle. I will introduce my three year old daughter to simple meditation practices of silence and peace. I will invite her to join me in my yoga practice. Part of my activities is to establish lifelong parenting skills and to teach my daughter mindful living. She will assist me in the preparation of the organic vegetarian dishes I create.  I will keep a weekly journal on my daughter's activities. I will do extensive research into yogic practices and how they are used to heal the body on all levels.  I will use this information to develop a personal daily practice.  I will keep a journal of my daily yoga and meditation practices. I will research the religion of Hinduism, past, present, and it's influence on the world and most specifically the west.  I will complete my program by attending the two day retreat in Seattle with the Indian guru Ammachi. I will meet weekly with a partner to discuss and process my progress.

How do I plan to do it?
A large part of my processing will be through journaling, and through writing and keeping extensive notes on what I am eating and cooking, my meditations, my healing practices my emotions and my observations. I will put together a collection of vegetarian recipes, I will prepare them and serve them to my family for the duration of this contract. Most of my communication will be through email. Please feel free to write me any time as I would love to hear what everyone else is doing.

Here are the books I will be reading this quarter.
As a part of my final presentation, I'll provide an annotated bibliography.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Hinduism  ( It is a great book despite the name)
Living Yoga
Yoga Mind and Body
Meditations from the Mat
Shakti Mantras
The Yoga of sound
The Deeper Dimensions of Yoga

Will use for reference:
Anatomy of Hatha Yoga
Light on Yoga
The Vedas

What do I plan to learn?
This is my last quarter; I plan on reconciling all my past education with my current future plans of becoming an art therapist. I plan on learning how to live a whole and mindful lifestyle and imparting this knowledge to my daughter. I plan on learning to to take care of my body and my daughter's body in a way that promotes health and healing.

What difference will it make?
I believe that  healing myself through mindful living I will be able to mirror back to my daughter, my family and my community wholeness.

Kealani's Final Presentation

From: <johnny@cadillacamericas.com>
Date: Wed, 17 May 2006 21:14:59 -0700
To: "Nakasone,Raul" <NakasonR@evergreen.edu>
Subject: RE: greetings from johnny C.

Hello Raul :)
It is quite an exciting time. I finally sourced the incredibly rare and elusive 68"+ driveshaft for the cadillac. Maybe you'll understand my excitement when I explain why that matters. . .The Cadillac is a very long car, and few other cars ever made had such a long shaft. This shaft reaches from the tail end of the transmission near the front of the car to the rear pumpkin where the two rear drive wheels meet. When I put the new diesel motor in the car, I put a new transmission along with it. That means the drive shaft from the Cadillac wouldn't mount up to the new transmission, this was O.k. by me though, because the drive shaft from the Cadillac had some very strange looking joints of a percarious and aged design. My buddy Jerry, has been making drivelines for the last 30 years, took one look at those joints and told me I wouldn't make it 5000 miles before I had trouble. He wanted to replace them with a much more simple and updated "U joint" design, but in order for that to happen I needed a long driveshaft to use as fabrication stock. I found it lying underneath a old mercedes in an untrafficed section of junkyard. Now the whole contraption is down at Jerry's place getting cut and balanced. But before that could happen, I spent another full day underneath the cadillac finding the measurements he would need to make me just the right shaft. Driveline angle, Yoke clearence, length at full extention, length at minimal extention, length at estimated right hight. These are important numbers to get right--- if the shaft is too short it might fall out on a rocky road and "polevault" the car skyward, if the shaft is too long it might press against the transmission so strongly that the shaft actually grenades through the transmission.
The next thing on my list after driveline was cooling. Cooling isnt something I had actually put alot of thought into (you just hook up the radiator and go, right?) until it was pointed out to me by people more knowledgable than myself that I had placed an enormous V8 diesel motor inside a smaller Cadillac Engine bay, and I had no room for the stock Diesel truck radiator. Add this to the fact I will be driving long distances in the full range of climates  and cooling becomes quite a challange indeed.
According to my estimates, my stock Cadillac radiator, which fits in my engine bay, has only has about 60% of the cooling the diesel motor wants. But there is more to cooling than just coolent; the transmission and the motor oil also need their own methods of cooling. You can do this via external coolers (which look something like mini-radiators) or by built in coolers on the "tanks" of your main radiator.
Add to all these the fact my stock 6.2 Diesel mechanical fan wont fit on my motor any longer. There just simply isn't any room between the motor and the radiator for it to live. The practical solution is an electric fan setup, but that becomes it's own research project. How much CFM (cubic foot of air per minute) do you need? Will the fan(s) mount on the front (push) or rear (pull) of the radiator, and what are the pros and cons of each. Do you need a fan controller to tell the fan when the motor needs it, or are you thoughtful enough to mount it on a toggle switch on your dash? One fan or two? Directional blades?
I finished and then tested the electrical circuitry last night! Nothing caught on fire or otherwise suggested that I had misrun anything. This means, theoretically, I've managed to splice the diesel motor wiring into the Cadillac wiring successfully. However, there won't be any sure bets until the motor has actually fired to life, and that cannot happen with good conscience until the driveshaft has been installed and the transmission filled with tranny fluid, the motor with motor oil, and the radiator with coolent. Dry-running a motor without proper fluids can be really rough on it, and I surely dont need to add anymore stress to such a delicate mechanical machine than I already plan to.
I was reviewing my contract recently, and it spoke about conducting "interviews and survays directed at how these communities were formed" in the communities I visit. Since it seems unlikely I will have a chance to drive the Cadillac into any communities before this quarter ends, I've been seeking them out locally. I forgot what a hotbed of intentional thought I live in - I have three good leads.
My question to you - do you have any questions you'd like answered? I am still mulling over which questions will pull people from their shells. I am quite a traditionalist with my who, what, when, where and why's.
hoping you are well :)

From: Adam Schoenfeld [mailto:adam@schoenfeld.com]
Sent: Tue 5/23/2006 1:53 PM
To: Reconciliation
Subject: [reconciliation] What an amazing year!
Hi Guys! Well this has truly been an amazing year for me. It has been by
far my most productive and emnlightening year at Evergreen. I am so
grateful for the oppurtunities this class has offered me. This is my
final year here at Evergreen and as I speak with friends who went to
other more traditional schools I just grow happier and happier with my
Evergreen education. Some of you may remember that last year I spent
time in Thailand and had a truly inspiirational and life changing trip
which unfortunately came to an early end due to the tsunami that struck
SE Asia. So this year, I returned to SE Asia to continue where I left
off. International culuture and business has always been of great
interest to me and Asia is a great place to study both. For my final
project this year I have begun work on a webiste which will detail my
journey through Asia. I will keep you guys posted as my work progresses
and I thank you all again for all of the support I have been given.


P.S If anybody needs tips on places to stay or things to do in Thailand
please do not hesitate to contact me.

From: Peter Ewen [mailto:mr.peterewen@gmail.com]
Sent: Mon 5/8/2006 10:53 PM
To: Nakasone, Raul
Subject: Tasmania Report 1
    *Report 1*
    *Making Connections / First Impressions*
*    **I. Arrival - The 'Pickled Frog' and Thesis*

    I am here in Hobart, Tasmania at a hostel called the Pickled Frog.  It
has only been a week since we arrived, but already I have had quiet the
adventure.  We spent some times with activists in the Weld and Styx Vallies,
as well as visited a few parks to marvel at the wildlife.  However, I the
greatest focus of my trip so far has been put into investigating their music
culture.  I have traveled to a few venues, talked to people about local
music, and made my own observations regarding the marketing and spread of
music in Tasmania.  The people here have all been exceedingly generous,
which has made my inquiries a real pleasure.

     For this first week, one theme seems to run through all my
observations.  This dynamic is one that I expected to encounter here, and it
has been interesting to hear others voice this feeling.  That feeling is
that, on first site, Tasmania's musical culture seems similar to most
westernized music cultures, but Tasmanians are keenly aware of their
isolation from the mass media.

    *II. Advertising - '3 for 50' and 'Ipodogogy'*
*   *While Tasmanian musicians might find it difficult to spread their music
off of the island, the outside world is everywhere in Tasmania.  Perhaps one
of the first things I noticed when in Sydney and, indeed, Hobart were the
huge signs saying, "3 CDs for $50!".  The advertisers and not subtle one
bit.  Every square meter of most every CD shop carries these signs, in
tropical blue and yellow lettering.  This price, in US currency, works out
to be approximately $11 a CD.  Most of the music in these shops in not
local.  You may find some bands from the mainland, but the music is
primarily major-label and imported from outside of Australia.

    My first day in Tasmania I threw open the local paper - called *The
Mercury *- and I was astonished to see that the government is seeking
to supply IPODs to all their students, to use as teaching tools.  The
students would be able to download their assignments from sources, as well
as reading material and class documents.  This would certainly cut down on
paper, which seems to be in short supply in most public schools.  They
called this system 'Ipodogogy'.

    There are quiet a few venues for musicians here in Hobart, though once
someone leaves the city, the venues  quickly decrease.  Most of these places
are bars and cafes.  I have only located on place solely intended for music
performances, and that would be the Derwent Entertainment Center.  This
location hosts semi-big names.  It is not a place for youngsters to get

     *III.  Performances  - Street Musicians and Anita George*

     After accumulating a list of places where I could see local musicians
perform, I set out to take fieldnotes on the setting and to take notes on
the music.  Before I begin to speak about what the cafe scene is like, I'd
like to take a moment to talk about street performers, a couple from Sydney
and one from Hobart, because, while street performers are few, they perform
their unique music with skill.

     While traveling to Tasmania, we had a six hour lay-over in Sydney.  We
decided to take the chance to walk around the city and take in what we
could.  While we were out, we encountered the '3 for $50' deal most
everywhere.  I was especially pleased to catch site of the Black Wattle
birds, which are unique to Australia.

      We decided to head towards the Sydney Opera House.  It was there that
we spied two street performing groups whose styles were both very distinct.
They played in close proximity to one another, but they did not seem to
bother one another.  If you walked between the groups, however, you could
hear both of them playing simultaneously, creating an eerie affect.

       The first group was a trio of Aboriginies, all wearing what looked
like white mud caked over parts of their bodies.  They had three different
Didjeridus set up on a rug.  One of the aborigines (they switched off) would
perform using one of the three Didjeridus.  His performance was accompanied
by a synthesized drum beat, which I assumed was coming from a stereo (I
could not locate it... I suspect they hid it in the bush).  A second
Aborigine struck clap sticks, which he stuck on the downbeat of every
measure and beat three.  I found this to be strange, because the synthesized
drum track had a heavy back beat (with an emphasis on beats 2 and 4).  The
third aborigine would watch over the CDs that they had available, and
occasionally chat with tourists.

         Not far away was an older man who looked to be from the East.  He
played an instrument which is unknown to me.  It looked to be a type of gord
that was curved like a sickle.  From either point of this sickle, a string
was pulled tight.  He would rub a bow along the string, and sing in a quiet,
mewling fashion.  At the top of the string, he would place his index
finger.  By applying pressure and releasing it, the man could manipulate the
pitch in subtle ways.  Strewn out in front of him were pages of text,
written in an eastern language which I could not discern.  Because of his
close proximity to the Didjeridu performers (who were much louder), the man
was oftentimes performing in the same key.

          Hobart itself, being the populous center of Tasmania, surprisingly
seems to lack a street-performing group of people.  I have only encountered
one street performer thus far.  He was an older gentlemen, who did not seem
impoverished in any way.  On Elizabeth street, which is the main drag of
Hobart, he took a seat amidst the shops and played his clarinet.  The sound
of it - the technique he used - was more similar to a saxophone player.  He
rolled through his scale, melodically dancing about a key, with no real

            In this first week, I have only begun to observe actual gigs in
Tasmania.  I made it a point to check out a performance at a popular venue
in town: The Republic Bar & Cafe.  The Pickled Frog posts local events on
their bulletin board.  It was here I heard about Anita George.  I went to
the bar at about 8:30.  It was a clean, moody atmosphere, which reminded me
of an Irish pub.  The people were primarily older than me, looking to be in
their late twenties.  They drank mostly wine, with enormous deserts.  I was
shocked to see fat pieces of chocolate cake smothered in sauce being set in
front of you average bar flies.

            The first performer was a male, who had traveled from
Melbourne.  He wore a striped shirt, with long black hair and a soul patch
on his bottom lip.  He looked to be in his twenties.  His songs were all
quiet similar.  He played with similar chord progressions and similar
strumming patterns.  His voice was buried in the mix, which sat just under
people's conversations.  Little attention was paid to him, but he seemed
content with simply playing his tunes.

            Following him came Anita George.  She was flanked by a cello
player, who was buried below the mix.  The opening act guitarist joined her
on the lap guitar and occasionally added backing vocals.  Anita George moved
like many guitar players/singers I have seen.  She would step back from the
mic and dance when she wasn't singing.  Her chord progressions were
standard, and most of her songs were about her ex-boyfriend (as she
sheepishly confessed to the audience).  They put candles to either side of
the stage for atmosphere and used red stage lights to convey a certain
mood.  The band performed two sets, but it was clear that most people were
there to drink and socialize, not listen.  Personally, I did not find the
music intriguing, but it was interesting to see the patrons in the bar
converse over drinks.  People-watching became my favorite activity that

            One thing of particular weight that I'd like to mention:  during
her set, Anita George referred to Tasmania as a small place (she was
speaking specifically of Hobart).  Her words conveyed the idea: Tasmania is
a small place with very little opportunity for young artists seeking

          *IV. The Melbourne Connection - Holly's List and Guy Mallaby*

          While staying with environmental activists in the Weld and Styx
Vallys, I asked the Tasmanians:  What do you think the scene is like here in
Tasmania?  Their instant response:  What scene?  So I asked them:  If a
musician in Tasmania wishes to make a carreer out of their music, how would
they do it?  Their answer:  Most go to Melbourne.

           Beau, a man who traveled around with us for three days, explained
to me the dynamics of Australian Hotspots:  "Most musicians go to
Melbourne.  But, because there are so many musicians there trying to make
it, there is little exposure."  Beau then went on to explain:  "Anyone who
wants to make it should go north, to Darwin.  That's where things are taking

          Another activist, Holly, literally took my note pad from me and
began scrawling a list of names and information:  magazine and journals,
locations in Melbourne to catch shows, radio stations.  All in all, she
wrote four pages of information.  Sadly, just after writing out the outline
for this first report on the bus, I misplaced my folder, thus losing all my
information on Melbourne.

          Now for a personal story:  Beau told me about a friend of his, who
was from Tasmania, Guy Mallaby.  Guy had been into Jazz and excelled at the
genre.  He was multi-instrumental, although his focus was the guitar.
Seeking to make a career for himself, Guy traveled to Melbourne, where the
scene is much more vibrant.  Unfortunately, while in Melbourne, Guy Mallaby
was stabbed three times.  His murderer was crazed.  Lacking insentive to
kill Guy, an aboriginal man took a long bowie knife and plunged it into his
belly repetively.  He died from a loss of blood.  Beau has since promised to
send me some of Guy's music.

          * V. Subject Matter - Psytrance and Environmental Preservation*
*          *Aside from Anita George's boyfriends, there is some genuinely
deep subject matter as well as some more abstract, subjectless music.  While
staying with Beau and other environmentalists, I caught sight of some CDs
that they offered.  They were compilations, featuring some thirty to fourty
artists.  All the musicians were local, and all were concerned with the
preservation of Tasmania's pristine rainforests.  I managed to spend some
time in there rainforests with many blockaders and I came to understand the
danger and passion involved in their actions.  The songs from this album, as
well as a CD of Aussie Hip Hop that Beau showed me, express a deep, cultural
concern for the decimation of their lands in the face of 'progress' and

         They also enjoyed a genre of music I had never heard of before
called Psytrance.  In a broad sense, this music would be considered to be
Techno (a style of music most often synthesized and dependent of a steady
quarter note bass drum line).  Psytrance, however, depends less on some sort
of melody and more on ethereal noise, which is correlated (in the minds of
the people who introduced me to this music) to drug use and 'out-of-body'

          *VI. Conclusions - Isolation and Passion*

          To me, this initial week was characterized by the idea of
isolation in Tasmania, and their removal from the rest of the world.  It is
certainly a quaint area, where music is apparent but not explosive.  It
seems like a small wave in the sea of culture in Tasmania.  However, the
people here are certainly passionate, as I experience in the Weld and Styx
vallys (visit www.huon.org for more information) and musically talented as
well.  While this may not be a spot to gain success, it is a constructive
atmosphere nonetheless.

         So there you have it: a brief summation of what I have observed of
Tasmania and its music.  There is much yet to observe and much yet to hear.
With future reports I will include a thesis, concert revues, and thoughts on
marketing (much like I did this time).

Peter is one of Raul's ILC student this Spring.

hi raul, my presenation this year will be called "Repurposing Trash: Creating useful things out of seemingly useless junk". It will be a presentation about various tech projects I've been working on using recycled materials, and creating or aiding other community projects with these materials. If possible, I'd like to present my project on Monday, June 6th. Please let me know if this would be okay.

Matthew Derrick

From: Busbee, Hannah [mailto:bushan10@evergreen.edu]
Sent: Sat 5/6/2006 1:38 PM
To: Reconciliation
Subject: [reconciliation] 5th week

Hi all,

I hope all of your contracts are working out well.  It sounds like they are.  The last five weeks for me have been very intense.  I have spent the weeks in deep study and meditation.  I have been attending my Yoga regularly, studying under a wonderful teacher named Annepornea.  I have read several amazing books on the history of India and Hinduism. I am now doing extensive research on the individual Goddess and Gods.  I have been keeping a weekly journal of my thoughts and insights.  Logging my daily yoga, meditations, and mantras. 
I helped facilitate the first Satsang for Ammachi on Whidbey Island.  The Satsang will be meeting at my house once monthly.  I will also being seeing Amma on June 1st were I have the great blessing of being able to perform the Pada Puja on Amma. This quarter has been an enlightening experience for me.
I wish you all the best.

From: Amy Monaghan [mailto:ajm30@yahoo.com]
Sent: Fri 5/5/2006 9:39 AM
To: Reconciliation
Subject: [reconciliation] Five week report
Hello all,
I hope that everyone is enjoying the fabulous weather . I first want to
say that I am sorry that I have not been to any classes this quarter. I
thought I was going to be able to be there more, and I will, just not yet.
I am also sorry I missed some of the presentations.
 I last reported that I had recieved my non-identifying information. I
have contemplated  how I am going to present . I  focused on the name of
the class, Reconciliation and what that means  and ment to me at the
beginning of this program. I am writing and putting together a small
scrapbook showing and telling about my Reconciliation and adoption search
experience. This will include all of what I have learned durring this
program and how I plan to carry this into future experiences in my life.
Thank you all for you time and hope to see you soon.

From: Busbee's [mailto:fullmoon@whidbeyisland.com]
Sent: Fri 5/5/2006 1:56 PM
To: Reconciliation
Subject: [reconciliation] week 5
Hi Everyone,

I am knee deep in learning. This is shaping up to be an amazing quarter.
My only regret is that I did not join this program earlier in the year.
I have interviewed three people regarding their spiritual practices this
last week and I have a ton of journal and research notes to sort through
and organize. I am on top of my reading and things are progressing quite
well. I recently applied for a business license and have been offering
Reiki to the community. I am scheduled to teach a meditation class in
June. This way of learning has opened many doors for me and has allowed
me to look at my life and my future from a much broader perspective. I
have decided to continue through the summer. I need more time to fully
immerse myself in this wonderful process. I had a consultation with an
Ayruvedic practitioner. This has proved to be very helpful and I am
making  life changes regarding my health. I am learning the chakra
system and different ways to meditate. I took a workshop in Nadia Yoga.
(Sound Yoga). This form of sound and mantra meditation seems to be
helping my asthma. I learned how to work with my breath and to expand my
lung capacity. This class was taught by an amazing  teacher that came to
Whidbey Island from India. A family sponsored him to come here. The
class was very small, about five of us, so there was lots of time for
questions and personal instruction. He discussed different facets of
Hindu spirituality at length. I hope everyone is enjoying themselves as
much as I am.

Patricia Busbee

From: Patrick Lemus [mailto:red_rum_80@yahoo.com]
Sent: Fri 5/5/2006 4:07 PM
To: Nakasone, Raul
Subject: Re: [reconciliation] FW: Email from Faculty Directory Site
Mr. Nakasone
my name is patrick lemus and i am doing an art project
wherein i should have about two hundred real pages of
sketch work done of people (from life and pictures)
and about thirty comics drawn in a digital medium. the
reason i say "about" is because i am a novice level
art student, having taken only a few art courses in my
life. i also have no history in digital art. So
instead of just doing what i already know, i am
actually learning how to manipulate adobe
photoshopCS2, a wacom tablet, and i am practicing
techiniques that i am learning from various books.
thus far, i am doing well. The main focus of my work
is to show a steady arch of improvement, i realize
that being an "artist" takes years of focused study.
i apologize for not putting this up on the actual
reconciliation web thread, but i don't know how and i
tried to navigate the sight multiple times.
anyway, thank you for your time
and have a great day.
patrick lemus
(p.s. would you be able to tell me when a good date
for final presentations would be?)

From: Tammy Brookins [mailto:nookinz@yahoo.com]
Sent: Thu 5/4/2006 6:59 PM
To: Reconciliation
Subject: [reconciliation] week 5 report
Hello fellow learners,
  So a little update about the progress on my project.  I have been spending the last couple of weeks reading a couple of last minute sources and going through the bountiful chore of analyzing and compling my notes.  So I have been theorizing on gender as a level of taxonomy/hierarchy and in this system, gender always refers to women.  I have been looking at alternative gender/sexuality(two spirit, transgender and queer individuals) to understand the differing formations of gender systems within the sociological paradigm.  So at the moment, I feel I am in that finalizing stage of my research even though this work will continue after "my education" at Evergreen ends.
  Tammy Brookins


Have you ever battled with yourself over your yoga practice?  Perhaps you have not been able to commit to a home routine, or your lack of confidence in doing the postures prevents you from practicing.  Do you ever feel that you aren’t flexible enough or lack the physical ability to practice safely?  Is meditation more intimidating than it is integrative?  If you can relate to any of these questions I hope that the next few pages bring you closer to feeling confident and at home in your practice.  Hatha yoga is not foreign or exotic, it is a simple way to get to know yourself more fully and lovingly.

          This paper addresses the use of the dreambody[1] to perfect alignment in asana. Through lucidity you can tap into the flowing river of authenticity and awareness while developing discipline within a yoga practice.   Utilizing process-work methodology and the three stages of Kripalu yoga[2] you can transform your practice from a rigid routine to one whose physical and psychological mastery stems from a commitment to honor and respect who and where you are. 

          It is important while practicing hatha yoga to let go of everyday reality for a while and become more lucid, mindful and sentient.  You may experience marginalizing the dreambody in your yoga practice when you suddenly space out and become unaware of what is happening in the moment. To have a lucid and sentient experience during yoga practice requires one to be fully awake, fully present and willing to explore sensations, emotions, and visions with equanimity and awareness. 

Becoming more sentient in your practice will help you notice the signals and expressions that may be at the root of your outward behavior. To be in touch with sentient experience simply means to shift attention from the outside to the inside.  It is difficult to describe with words because it requires us to be sensory, somatic, intuitive and emotional. In developing our mindfulness and concentration we can become evermore aware of the subtle clues our physiology and psychology are sending.  By honoring these callings and messages the practice of yoga will stem from a deeper source, the core energy of life.  (Mindell)

          “In the relaxed open-minded state that is accompanied my lucid awareness, you approximate a central experience found in many spiritual traditions, an experience of oneness here things get done without you ‘doing’ them.”   (Arnold Mindell, quantum mind and healing page 24.)

The stage of willful practice is the first stage of Kripalu Yoga.  The eyes stay open and alert, and the practitioner is using logical reasoning to partake in the endeavor.  At some point in your experience as a yoga practitioner you will more that likely have to drag yourself to the mat, especially when you are feeling depressed or particularly good. What can sooth us into the willful stage of practice?  In one of Arnold Mindell's books he says that suffering and pain alone are not enough for someone to motivate and change oneself.  There must also be discipline that stems from the heart.  He defines discipline as an inner drive that pushes you.  It begins with wonder and curiosity.  “If your process fascinates you, you will become aware of the continuum of awareness, of the process which organizes existence.  The process itself will fascinate you with its power, and this excitement creates discipline.” 

We can nurture this excitement and curiosity about ourselves with our yoga practice by inviting each experience to be new and fascinating.  Though you may have done a posture a million times, it is never “done” there is always a new experience to be curious about.  It is helpful to realize you cannot look for a past experience or breakthrough that you have had or another person or teacher has had, you need to cultivate a curiosity of your own breakthroughs however small or insignificant or exhilarating they might be.  Follow these wonders until you have had your fill. In those times that we must willfully drag ourselves to the mat we can offer a remembrance of how wonderful and exhilarating yoga can be.

Hatha yoga is a meditation procedure in which the practitioner is engrossed in a proprioceptive and kinesthetic experience. The second stage of Kripalu yoga refers to this type of awareness study.  After you have practiced for  a whole you will find that you are able to be more lucid and attend to subtler body sensations.   Since most people are not used to tuning into their bodies in this way it automatically produces an altered state of consciousness—one where the ordinary sense of the world is stopped.  Focusing on this experience gives rest to our everyday lives.  From this place of solitude from normal consensual reality there is opportunity to witness our internal energies. 

Proprioceptive meditation opens us up to subtler experiences of ourselves. The eyes of the practitioner may close at times to fully experience the body internally.  Micro movements are made to adjust.  Once you form some familiarity with the process you can let your lucid dreaming body perfect alignment.  Instead of “doing” the posture the posture and you work together with all the laws of nature. (Mindell)

          As you practice in this way you may also encounter thoughts, emotions, images and auditory sounds.  Is anything you feel and sense worthy of observation?  Yes!  If the practice is approached with a sense of openness and investigation then you will realize that no movement, thought or impulse is insignificant.  (Fari)  Anything can be part of the experience at any moment. Yoga postures inherently release locked up emotions, images or other experiences that may be trapped in your muscles.  Simply acknowledge the presence of such experiences and willfully but gently continue to be aware of your proprioceptive3 experience. From this level of attention you can tap into what is needed next to achieve optimal results for health.

          Ancient yogis discovered through inquisitiveness and open mindedness the vast creative range of practices handed down to us today.  Yogis began to move and found their bodies needed, for whatever reasons, to assume certain posture.  (consider rewording) The names of yoga asanas, cat cobra, and bow, ECT indicate these positions correspond to specific images or feelings (pg 56).  Yogis let their proprioceptive and kinesthetic channel give voice to their experience.  This type of experience directly correlates with the third stage of Kripalu Yoga.  In this stage the yogi is moved not by will but by the flow of life force, called "prana”, into various movements or postures.  A good example of this is letting your body intuit a counter pose after having held a posture.  When you hold a posture there is a controlled build up pf energy that can then flood the body when the posture is released. The key to deepening the meditation in these moments is to follow the energy and be moved by it.  This could be relaxing, energizing, or incapable of definition because now you may enter the realm of experience that is not defined by willful action, just a gentle and loving knowing of what is to be done.  A good term for this experience is  “choiceless awareness”.  You are no more “doing” yoga, but again yoga and you are working together with all the laws of nature.  It is like letting your body dream.   No separation, only surrender to what is. This is why Kripalu yoga is often described as surrender yoga. 

This awareness of the communication between our energetic selves and our senses is integral to the practice of Kripalu yoga since prana communicates through the senses.  The yogis use their proprioceptive channel to listen to and respond to the messages. Though our honesty and love we find that our body and mind are brought to a sense of harmony and balance.  As Mindell writes “we have only one true problem—ignoring the dreaming background to reality.”  With the use of Kripalu Yoga one can easily tap into the lucidity that inspires us to live from our true source the spirit of life—our greatest potential power.




[1] The  “dreambody” is a term coined by Arnold Mindell to refer to that  part of ourselves that we normally don’s pay much attention to.  This encompasses body sensations, visions, dreams, and other experiences we may not identify with ordinarily.  An example of this may be a muscle ache, a headache, or even a vision.

[2] Kripalu Yoga s a form of hatha yoga

3 In Process theory proprioception is just one “channel” involved in our experience.  There are other channels that one may experience such as sight, visionary, auditory, and kinesthetic.  In Mindell’s view, if we are experiencing something in one channel, we can “switch” channels and experience the same thing in another channel.  For example, in one channel you may be experiencing sore shoulders; by switching to the visual channel you may inwardly see certain colors or figures.  This is the beginning of process work meditation in which the meditator follows and amplifies movements, sights, or sounds with the intention to uncover hidden parts of the self.  Though this meditation is not covered fully here, the concept is important to yoga  because if offers keys for our understanding of things as they come up for us in our practice.  Hatha yoga mainly uses the proprioceptive and kinesthetic channels to work through deep blocks and samsara locked on our bodies and psyches.

From: Michele De La Cruz [mailto:micheledlc7@hotmail.com]
Sent: Tue 5/2/2006 12:49 PM
To: Nakasone, Raul; Rutledge, David
Cc: chingkarma@yahoo.com
Subject: Update and Presentation Date
Greetings! I know I've not really been in touch much, and I hope that's been
ok. I've been very active and busy with many things! I am excited to give my
presentation for the year. I absolutely MUST give it on Tues, June 6, week
10, whatever time is available. I am moving to Eugene at the end of May, and
so need to coordinate my presentation with moving, work, and event schedule!
I don't have Yvonne's e-mail address, so hopefully you can forward this to

Quick Update:
I have started working with a team of health care providers in Portland
(acupunture, yoga instructor, oriental medicine, indigenous medicine,
massage therapy, retired pharmacist) together with the Amazon Herb Company,
who works with indigenous peoples in the Amazon (14 different tribes, mainly
in Peru!) to sustainably harvest wild-crafted herbs, then use the money to
help them buy the deeds to and legally own their rainforest land so they can
stop the logging, farming, and invasion of their land!! It's been so great.
And the herbs have helped heal life long health problems I've been
struggling with! So I've been learning a lot about the healing properties of
various herbs that grow wild in the Amazon and how the tribes have used them
for years. The person who actually introduced me to the company got her MA
through an independent study program she wrote, studying in the Amazon with
a few tribes! I know the company has already helped preserve the deeds to
300,000 acres of land, and they have a Rainforest Wildlife Refuge as well.
So I've done a few booths (picture from one attached) and workshops and plan
to do way more this summer! Check out my website, scroll to the bottom, and
check out the news resource links, info about the company, and the
rainforest for more info: www.consciousintentions.amazonherb.net. As well as
our Portland Amazon Herb community tribe page:
http://tribes.tribe.net/amazonherb. I might set up a booth at Evergreen
sometime in late May or early June to inform conscious evergreeners about
this great company!

I have also decided to be a mentor to a boy at my work (Janus Youth - Taylor
House - home for at risk adolescent boys). So although I will no longer be
employed by them when I move, I will be a much larger part in this boys
life, helping him find foster placement after he completes the program,
taking him out for fun when he's behaving, and being a solid support person.
I think it will be tough, but I'm willing to do it. He is a brilliant,
funny, special kid who's had a hard life, and I'm pretty much the only 
person at my work who has a lot of influence over him. He even kinda looks
like he could be my little brother. I'm taking him to the Portland Rose
Festival amusement park for his 16th birthday :)

Then I am continuing to throw All Ages-No Alcohol, underground music events
to help build community in Eugene. All the winter events kept getting better
and better and now we have a soild group of people who are all like family
and contribute their art, talents, and energy to the events to make them
beautiful and amazing! This summer is packed with good things for us,
including the purchase of a new sound system that is designed for softness
and clarity (rather than blow-your-ears-out-bass) to create an even better
vibe in the scene because we believe the quality and vibration of sound
effects the whole atmosphere. No one else in the scene has a system of this
high quality, so we will be renting it to and helping set up at events from
Seattle to Mt. Shasta, which will help create more communication and
co-creation with other scenes in the NW. I've attached the flyer for our
next event coming up, and a picture of a belly dance performance we had at
our November event.

There's more, but those are the major things. Can't wait to see you guys.
Please let me know if there's anything else I need to know or you need from
me, and confirm my presentation date.

Much love,
Michele De La Cruz
Portland, Oregon

P.S. Check out my tribe page above ^ for more pics and details on what I've
been up to!

From: Lydia Thrall [mailto:lthrall@hotmail.com]
Sent: Tue 5/2/2006 2:42 PM
To: Reconciliation
Subject: [reconciliation] Week 5 Report
Since I have been back from Peru I have been studying my family history and
cultural background.  Being in another country and learning about the
culture there made me realize that I did not know as much about my own
background as I would like to know.

The process of learning about my background has been interesting and has
taken me in a direction that I didn't anticipate.  I began with
prehistorty/ancient history right when I got back from Peru.  I started here
because it seems to make since to start as far back as you can and move
forward chronologically, but I was also inspired to try to find a time when
my ancestors lived in a cooperative social organization.  I had already
learned of the "great civilizations" on which western civilization was
founded countless times throughout my education.  Specifically I had learned
about a white male interpretation of them, so instead I read a feminist take
on ancient European civilization.  The perspective of the author that I read
(The Chalice and The Blade by Raine Eisler) was that the men who write the
common perspective on ancient history have a tendency to project their
male-dominated values onto the past and interpret it thusly.  She drew from
scholars who had reanalyzed the artifacts and ruins and found that could
indicate that great cooperative civilizations could have existed as well.  
Interestingly, these civilizations seemed to have earth-based religions that
were goddess centered or gave equal value to a god and goddess pair.

Since I know my family to be from the British Isles and Prussia, I chose to
study the Celtic peoples next.   My studies there were interesting, but I
started growing antsy reading about all these ancient goings on that are
interpretation-based.  So I chose to read A Language Older Than Words by
Derrick Jensen.  He addresses a lot of the issues that our domination-based
society creates in the present.  He compares our society, that claims that
domination is necessary to survive under the doctrine of "survival of the
fittest," with cooperative societies that still exist today (as most of them
have already been wiped out by our insatiable culture).  This juxtoposition
of the present state of the society that I belong to with a past society of
cooperation (that I am seeking to learn about)  raised a lot of questions
for me about how we got from there to here.

If my goal as a young person is to build toward a future cooperatively-based
society, then learning the history and the complexities of domination (all
of the damage that has to be repared) seems integral to that work.  So after
Derick Jensen, I moved on to a book called No Disrespect by Sister Souljah.  
It is a memoir of the life of a black woman who grew up in the projects.  
This may not seem like a logical step, but I have developed an conciousness
of how all things in my life are connected and how my learning is only
meaningful when it can be connected to the rest of my life in such a way.  
So reading this story, I have an understanding that my ancestors had a hand
in the oppression of this woman's people, and that I too have a hand in it
as well.

As I have been learning about the atrocities committed by my people, I am
developing an ever-increasing sense of repsonsibility to deal with the
legacy handed down to me.  I know that my family came to this country and
stole this land from the indigenous people, that my family was slave-owners,
that my family continues to live off of resources and labor of people in
"third world countries." I had always been taught growing up that helping
the "less fortunate" was a very generous act to be committed by the most
kind-hearted people, but was by no means a responsibility.  I was given the
impression that worrying about working for my own personal gain was a
responsible and important thing to do, in fact a prerequisite to charity.  
The more that I learned about the way the world works (global economy, ect.)
the more that I began to question this notion, but my studies this quarter
have really turned this idea on its head.  I realize now that my
contribution to those who are oppressed is not a matter or charity, but of

This raises the huge question of "how?"  How do I go about contributing to
ending oppression in a meaningful way?  This is something that I will
continue to explore and probably never will find a single conrete answer to.
  But I have still be acting in whatever small ways I can to try to achieve
this goal.  Part of this work takes place as political activism, part of it
is just maintaing relationships, part of it is spending time outside
recognizing my own connection with other species who are my nieghbors.  As I
mentioned earlier, I have begun, through my learning in Reconciliation, to
recognize how everything in my life (and the lives of others around me for
that matter) is connected.  As such, writing a brief summary of my work for
the past five weeks is tantamount to writing a summary of my entire
existance for the past five weeks.  In consideration of the fact that I have
gone through tremendous changes of my understanding of life in general as a
result of my work in this class, writing this summary seems even more

I still have about four weeks before I present.  In this time I plan to
study Pacific Northwest History and read Stannard's American Holocaust, as
well as spending some time learning from gardening.