I lead numerous workshops within the Toronto wellness community and will start traveling to conferences and festivals in North America and further abroad in the fall of 2013.
Each workshop topic below can be presented within a 2 or 3-hour time slot, with ample room for dialogue and experiential learning. I make good use of Powerpoint to stay on message, but am happy to follow the lead of whatever questions come up in the room. Over the course of a weekend, several subjects and experiential sessions can be threaded together to endow participants with a vivid appreciation for Ayurvedic worldview and practice.
You can contact me directly to programme a presentation for your community.
Intro to Ayurvedic Worldview and Practice
Yoga has its own medicine — Ayurveda – which seeks to illuminate our ecology, and to harmonize with it. This presentation will be a primer in the essentials of Ayurvedic holism, foundational energies (elements), modes (gunas), and bodily flows (doshas). The language of Ayurveda connects desires to the tissues, digestion to will, fertility to joy, and the body to the seasons. Together, we’ll explore basic intuition techniques, simple assessment tools for exploring constitution of self and other, and workshop whatever questions about personal health and balance arise from our discussion. A good preparation for labs that follow.
Stressed? Disorganized? Looking for a natural rhythm? Ayurveda puts daily routine at the centre of self-care. This presentation will process on the timing of solar and digestive cycles, and how to smooth over the transitional moments in your day in which you may be prone to low energy, wild food cravings, or emotional burn-outs. Student, parent, executive — bring your scheduling challenges to this Ayur-lab…
In Ayurveda, food and the capacity to digest it mirror each other — which means that understanding what is right for you to eat is a very personal journey. Wouldn’t it be nice to build a supportive diet naturally, based upon who you are, rather than what’s in vogue? Ayurveda gives a powerful language for doing just that. We’ll look at the typical states of digestive fire, and what foods best nourish us in the tasks of cleansing, repairing, or building. We’ll look at tastes and timing, raw veganism and omnivorism and everything in between, and echo the fundamental Ayurvedic principle: “Food is the first of all medicines.” Then, we get to share our food challenges and potential solutions from an Ayurvedic perspective.
Bringing the knowledge of the doshas to the lunar cycle can be revelatory. Understanding the building, “cooking”, and clearing phases puts the monthly journey into context. In the opening presentation, we’ll look at menstruation and constitution, signs of menstrual health, regulating cycles through diet, herbs, and exercise. We’ll also look at how to nurture menstruation through the perimenopausal stage. This lab always generates productive discussion.
Maintaining Health Through Stressful Times
If your professional or parental commitments are completely overwhelming, what are the simplest and most effective ways of preventing drops in immunity and seasonal illnesses? In Ayurveda, it’s all about pacifying vata dosha: the principle of change. In this presentation we’ll look at concrete dietary, herbal, and biorhythm techniques for daily stress relief, present simple slow-cooker recipes and other techniques for feeling cozy in the midst of chaos.
Intro to Ayurvedic Psychotherapy
What does psychotherapy feel like when it takes constitution into account? How is the therapeutic relationship influenced or guided by constitutional factors? How can an embodied psychotherapy begin to heal the split between perception and consciousness? How is the palette of emotions as necessary as the range of tastes? How is personal authenticity a function of well-seated fire? We’ll work with these questions and more in this introduction to a modern take on a very old approach to psychotherapy.
Pomegranates, Almonds, and Ghee: Ayurveda in the Bedroom
The nutritional basis of fertility. The meaning of orgasm. Love and stamina. The conditions of libido. Gender essences and dynamics. Aphrodisiac therapy. To whom are you best suited? Timing as per constitution. Frequency as per constitution. Exploring common emotional blockages that map into reticence or dryness. Sex and the phases of life. These topics and more — all up for discussion in this illuminating and encouraging presentation on the flower of Ayurvedic knowledge: reproductive health.
A Double Birth: Pregnancy and Birthing Care in Ayurveda
A beautiful tour through fertility enhancement, pregnancy experience by constitution, the doshas of each trimester, diet, birth prep, birthing experience as per constitution, and the first 40 days of the mother-child bond, which Caraka says sets up both for the next 40 years of health. A fantastic introduction for pre-and-postnatal yoga teachers, doulas, midwives, and parents-to-be.