Here’s a passage from my book Leap Before You Look.

Notice how you are already breathing in this moment.
Is the breath coming more into the upper part of the body?
Is it reaching the diaphragm?
Or is the breath reaching all the way down to the lower belly?
After just watching the way you are breathing for a couple of minutes,
Begin to bring some intention to your breathing.
With the in-breath,
Let the lower belly soften and expand.
When the lower belly feels full,
Feel the diaphragm expand with the breath.
Finally, let the chest and lungs fill completely with breath.
Hold the in-breath for a few moments,
Only as long as is comfortable,
Then let the air be expelled fully from the lungs:
First from the chest, then the diaphragm, and then the lower belly.
Just when you think you’re done,
Give an extra little push,
And you will find there is even more air to be expelled.
Hold on the out-breath for a few moments, before you inhale again.
Continue to breathe totally in this way for several minutes. (more…)

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I just finished leading five exquisite days of silent retreat for a group here in Nevada City.  I am bursting with excitement to share with you the fruits of this adventure, and, at the same time, at a loss for words to talk about five days where there were no words.

Silence has always been, for me personally, the greatest teacher.  Sounds paradoxical, doesn’t it?  You think of a teacher as giving you messages, insights, guidance…how can silence do that?  When I look back on my life, it was from discreet periods of silence that the greatest creative flow emerged.  It was from discreet periods of silence that the greatest blessings flowed, synchronicity just happened, and things fell together in the outer world.  It was following silence that opportunities flowed into my life most easily.

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I’ve written seven books.  My favorite is a novel: The Last Laugh.  Here is an excerpt I love:

yogaWednesday, no evening meeting. Paul and I drank instant coffee and ate Twinkies together. It had come to this. Then things began to get very clear. I was wasting precious time in distraction. All that mattered, and urgently, was that I be with Sam. That was our destiny. I knew. She was teaching yoga in less than an hour. No problem. I would go surprise her, and that would be that. Happily ever after. I pictured us proudly announcing our engagement to the assembled students later that day. How could I have missed such a simple solution? My already married status did not even rear its head as an impediment. I jumped up from the breakfast table, excused myself and got on a bus headed towards the rest of my life.

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