“A Model Guru”
From the world of high and fast fashion to a journey towards health and wholeness, Yogi Cameron has learned his path of presence along the way. Cameron has learned that it is not how far you travel or where you go, but the journey within that you need to take. Destinations do not change you. You change you by becoming present with yourself- your current state, current feelings, current habits.Read More
“How you climb a mountain is more important than reaching the top.” Yvon Chouinard
Presence is about the process over the end destination and few understand that as well as Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia. Patagonia’s mission is to do business in an inspiring way that implements solutions to the current environmental crisis. Yvon’s philosophy is to do no harm and actually improve the world through business. The Patagonia Brand was built on the backs of climbers and surfers knowing the value of living a minimalist lifestyle.Read More
When the breath wanders the mind also is unsteady. But when the breath is calmed the mind too will be still, and the yogi achieves long life. Therefore, one should learn to control the breath. ~Hatha Yoga Pradipika
Yoga practice offers us a gift. A gift of breath- deep nourishing breath, a gift of space and presence, a gift of inner peace. There is no one type of practice that is correct for all. Yoga is about beginning a practice and adjusting it to your body and needs. You can take control of your practice by building your own rituals.Read More
“I think we all want justice and equality, a chance for a life with meaning. All of us would like to believe that if we were in a bad situation, someone would help us.” Angelina JolieRead More
“Life, now, was unfolding before me, constantly and visibly, like the flowers of summer that drop fanlike petals on eternal soil.” ~Roman Payne
As the summer stretches on it will soon sail away into the Autumn Sky. Enjoy these long, hot summer days before the busyness of Fall kicks in. Take a period of rejuvenation whether it is a few minutes each day, a dedicated weekend, or a month long sabbatical.Read More
“The passing moment is all that we can be sure of; it is only common sense to extract its utmost value from it.” ~W. Somerset MaughamRead More
People Of Presence: Jewelry Designer & Philanthropist Satya
Jewelry designer and activist Satya Scainetti is a beautiful presence in the world. The mother of twin boys, Satya is busy in every sense of the word. She resides at the helm of a multi-million dollar business, graciously builds schools and supports children through her Satya Foundation, and still fits in a daily yoga practice and teaching mala making workshops at Wanderlust festivals, spas, and museums nationwide.
Hustling With Heart Brings Presence
Satya knows that when you run a business with heart, that gives back to the world by providing others with better opportunities, you become a powerful source of peace and love. It is the kind of mindfulness and inspiration we celebrate at Aquiesse.
You can see Satya’s attention to detail in her gorgeous jewelry pieces. Her carefully chosen stones and gems represent different feelings. Feelings of courage, purity, and radiance. Unconditional love and a sense of tranquility flows through each piece that is carefully handcrafted. Symbols of lotus flowers, guardians, and om keep wearers grounded. “Radiant, symbolic and powerful.”
Satya and her team ask three simple but crucial questions when designing each piece, “Is it beautiful? Is it meaningful? Is it inspiring?”
True presence requires passion, a desire to stay tuned into and engaged with your dream. A former social worker with a passion for early childhood education, Satya had a dream to create a line of jewelry that would not only bring benefits to her family, but would create opportunity for children around the world. When you become quiet, and aligned with your dream, the accomplishment becomes easy. Not because there are no challenges, but because you are present to handle them and fueled with a strong purpose.
Satya says it best, “I tapped into the fearlessness that I think is inside all of us. And the vision was so clear, and I was so motivated to make it happen, that is was effortless.”
The Satya Foundation partners with six organizations around the world to provide children with more hope for the future. Everything from education to clean water is a priority. The meaning and inspiration behind the company and foundation is in the meaning of Satya’s name which is “truth” in Sanskrit. And, she lives to inspire each individual to his or her own.
When Satya and her business partner and best friend Beth founded the company, the hope was to provide pieces that touch hearts. The lotus, a symbol used on many pieces in the collection is one that does just that through its very essence. “The lotus flower, which grows in mud all over Asia, is this beautiful flower that comes out of this dark, muddy pond and it looks untouched. It represents our own ability to come from a very dark place and also come out untouched.”
Satya jewelry brings a feeling of purpose and serenity. And, those are feelings we at Aquiesse can fully embrace. Wear beautiful gemstones, light a scented candle, strike a harmonious pose and be present with your dreams. “Give This World Good Energy.” For more information about our friend and inspiration, Satya, please visit Satya.com
Candle Meditations for Everyday Mindful Living
Candles have a long history not only to light the way from darkness, but in sacred rituals and ceremonies. Candles are lit around the world in churches and synagogues bringing weary pilgrims to a state of peace, calm and reverence. And in our everyday lives, we can use candles to relax the mind, shift the energy of a room, and uplift our moods.
Your daily routines can become enchanting and elevated with the use of scented candles. Candles have the ability to create a warming sense of presence for your meditation practice. The uplifting and comforting scents draw us into the now. The olfactory regions of the brain can aid in changing our emotions. Aromatherapy candles work to reduce stress and bring more tranquility into our lives.
Simply lighting a candle and watching the flame brings a sense of magic and elegance all its own. We’ve collected some candle meditations that are used in yoga and cultures around the world, to inspire a potentially new form of meditation in your own life.
Meditating with Candles
Candle Gazing Meditation
This is a relaxing meditation to ease yourself into greater focus and calm awareness. You will need to place yourself in a quiet and darkened room to perform this meditation. You could use a lavender or vanilla candle from our Mindful Collection to bring in a healing scent. Light the candle and position yourself in front of it at a comfortable distance. Sit comfortably with your palms gently in your lap. Take slow and deep breaths as you focus on the flame. As your mind wanders bring it back to focus on the flame.
Goal of Focus Meditation
For this meditation you will want to begin the same as above, but instead of bringing your mind back to only focus on the flame, you will choose a goal. Your goal could be anything from inner healing to job success. As you gaze at the flame focus on your goal and the aspects of it you want to achieve. Meditating in this way can help you feel more relaxed about achieving your goal and bring about a better state of mind.
Healing Bath Ritual
Another way to bring your body and mind into a meditative state is with a healing bath. Choose candles of your favorite scent and light them around your tub. You could use some healing oils in your bath water, as well. As you sink into the warm water, focus on contracting and then releasing each muscle group starting from your feet and working upward. Relax the tension in your body as you enjoy the nurturing candle light. To enhance the effect further, indulge in a scented and luxurious body lotion after you gently pat dry.
Immerse yourself in the moment and make candle lighting a part of your daily relaxation ritual. Lighting a candle on your desk at work, in the bedroom at night, or in the kitchen as you make tea brings forth a level of the sacred in what may otherwise be habit. As a part of a mindfulness ritual, it is really the most simple practices that most enhance your life. Mindfulness brings awareness, where miracles are discovered.
Ritual Of Presence: Meditation
In our busy world, developing a daily meditation practice is a crucial component of your health and happiness. Meditators who practice a 12-20 minute meditation each day, or those who use mindfulness techniques while going about their day, experience less anxiety and deeper sleep, an increase in mental resilience, and greater emotional intelligence.
A meditation practice brings your body and mind into the now, reduces heart rate and cortisol levels (that age us) and helps you live your life from a place of presence.
“When we pay attention, whatever we are doing...is transformed and becomes a part of our spiritual path. We begin to notice details and textures that we never noticed before' everyday life becomes clearer, sharper, and at the same time more spacious.” ~Rick Fields
There are a variety of ways to begin your own practice. Developing a ritual of presence is about finding the methods that work best for you and integrate easily into your life. And don’t worry about “not being good at” meditation, because there is no such thing as being “good” or “bad” at meditating, the whole point is to simply practice it regularly.
There are many techniques to choose from for your own meditation ritual of presence, we've listed a few here:
Mindfulness meditation is a practice of focusing on the present moment. As you breathe, you pay attention to your thoughts and the sensations in your body. You recognize them without judging them. A simple way to begin the practice is to sit comfortably and notice your breathing. How does it feel as you breathe in and out? Allow thoughts to come. Notice them, then let them pass on.
“Mindfulness is the aware, balanced acceptance of the present experience. It isn’t more complicated than that. It is opening to or receiving the present moment, pleasant or unpleasant, just as it is, without either clinging to it or rejecting it.” ~Sylvia Boorstein
“Vipassana” means “insight.” For this practice, sit comfortably and focus on your breathe to begin the awareness and concentration. Pay attention to the rising and falling of your abdomen and chest as you breathe. As your focus deepens, use it to observe the sensations in your body, name them, and then keep scanning your body. Long term benefits of Vipassana is an increase in your ability to focus. Not to mention this is the method of enlightenment discovered by Buddha himself!
Focus on the breath as the primary object. And a “secondary object” is anything else that arises in your field of perception – either through your five senses (sound, smell, itchiness in the body, etc.) or through the mind (thought, memory, feeling, etc.). ~Live and Dare
When a secondary object grabs your attention allow your focus to shift to it and label it and then move on without judging it. Naming knee pain as “pain” or wily thoughts as “thoughts” and continuing to move on helps to create a nonreactive mind. And wouldn’t that come in handy in LA traffic!?
Posture is an important aspect to Zen meditation. You may sit on the floor in lotus or half-lotus position or in a chair. You will want to keep your back straight. Breathing in and out through the nose, count your breaths backwards from 10 to put yourself in a relaxed present state.
“Instruction is given on how to sit zazen (seated meditation) in various positions - full lotus, cross legged, using a chair; also tips on breathing and how to go in to and out of meditation periods.” ~Yokoji Zen Mountain Center
To begin a mantra meditation practice you will want to set your intention. Mantras are simply words and/or phrases repeated during your meditation period. Chanting mantras focuses the mind and relaxes the body as you feel the vibration of the repetition. This practice helps you disconnect from interruptive thoughts and focus in on your desires. Mantras, repeated regularly, can have a powerful effect on keeping you in the present moment while transforming your life.
Our favorite mantras are from yogi-musicion Girish, you can enjoy his mantras via Spotify or Pandora or on www.Girishmusic.com
This type of meditation is considered “compassion meditation.” Its focus is on spreading love to and from yourself. This meditation can increase your self-love and self-awareness while also helping to deepen your empathy towards others. To perform this meditation, you will sit comfortably with eyes closed and focus on your heart.
“Breathing in and out from the heart center, begin by generating this kind feeling toward yourself. Feel any areas of mental blockage or numbness, self-judgment, self-hatred. Then drop beneath that to the place where we care for ourselves, where we want strength and health and safety for ourselves.” Next you will move your benevolence out towards others. For full instructions and phrases you can use, please visit ContemplativeMind.org
Choosing a meditation practice will depend on your goals and choosing a method that connects with you personally. The important thing to remember is to set aside time to be present with the practice and to be consistent each day. Find an instructor if needed. The benefits of presence and meditation are astounding, we would love to hear about your meditation practice in the comments below. Happy Meditating!