vesic_jelena vesic_jelena

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Jelena Vesić  Ashtanga Yoga Student Teacher at @ashtangatoronto ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 👇New blog post - “The Importance of Having a Teacher “👇

This dress, my mom's dress, is a story of my family, a story of me. In this dress I stand tall. I stand my ground. It makes me feel empowered, sexy, vulnerable and feminine. This dress... #lovealwayswins

Is gracefulness absence of struggle or is it ability to breathe through it?
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I know that imperfect is beautiful (though I may forget sometimes). I know that difficulty and chaos can bring out the best in us. And I know that ease and fluidity are nothing but a result of of effort and willingness to accept things as they are. Grace emerges not because we’re perfect, but simply because we choose to surrender to the work, effort, and yes, difficulty of staying present.

Head in the clouds. Always! ☁️

Our week of teaching here in beautiful Sofia has come to the end. And for seven days straight @davidrobsonyoga and I persistently insisted/gently demanded that everyone put their arms through their lotus in #garbhapindasana. This is, after all, how this asana is done.
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So what’s the secret? If you’re not sweaty enough, spray water. Lots of it. Wear shorts! Oh, and actually try it. Daily effort is the magic which makes it happen.
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How do we know? We’re speaking from our own experience. 😉

Dogs are my daily reminder that true, infinite, beyond reason, deeper than logic, unconscious yet unconditional love is ever present within me. What a thing to be reminded of?!

The rawness of self inquiry is frightening. And uncomfortable. Sooner or later, it entails looking at the very parts of yourself you wish to disavow.
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See the anger, sadness, pain and jealousy. But don't judge! You shouldn't feel weak or unworthy. Chögyam Trungpa says "when you are just there, then, if you see the actual darkness, that will inspire light or sunrise."
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Simply look at yourself. Don't condemn. Don’t pretend. And don't be embarrassed.
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Shorts by @sulayoga 🐯

Whenever I’m having a hard time on my mat, I recall the words of my therapist and I repeat them to myself: “Hey strong body of mine, thank you for carrying me no matter what. Thank you for holding me no matter what. I am standing.”
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It works. It works because it makes me pause for a second and appreciate that which I doubt - my body, my self. It works because it is me doing the work of noticing and mindfully changing my thoughts. It works! Try it...
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@davidrobsonyoga and I are on our way to my corner of the world - the beautiful Balkans! We’re teaching in Sofia, Bulgaria. Also, we’ll be eating at Sofia’s vegan restaurants. Who says the Balkans isn’t changing?!😉
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Then we make our way to Italian coastline, for a week long retreat in stunning Salento. And finally Milan. I’ve never been to Milan, but my parents’ stories and love of this city makes me feel as if I have. I can’t wait to FaceTime with them as I stroll down the streets I’ve seen in their photos. And yes, I’ve packed that blue dress that was once my mom’s...
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I am excited. Lucky. Honoured. And not looking forward to all the jet lag! 🙄

Saturday morning Mysore vibes with yours truly... ♡ #inlove

I thought about posting only my “good” side. I decided against it. So this is it - unedited, honest clip from yesterday’s practice. This is the truth of it. Struggle and contentment. Effort and ease. And acceptance. A lot of it!
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Physically, I am very much challenged by this pose - pāśāsana! Mentally, I’m totally fine with it being less than perfect. It is difficult, messy, and yes, very uneven side to side. Yet my piece of mind is neither diminished nor disturbed by the struggle of twisting into it.
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Of course, this wasn’t always the case. And sure, I still get caught up in the drama of beautiful asana. But it’s no longer a daily occurrence. It’s more sporadic and infrequent than it’s ever been. And this is big!
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It’s taken many years, and it will take a lifetime more, but I’m slowly starting to dismantle my distorted ideas about perfect. Perfection, after all, is nothing but an illusion. It’s a made up story we create in our head about how things should be. We expect. We grasp. And we let our imagination run wild. We convince ourselves that perfect is real, and that it really does make everything perfect. So we foolishly chase after it until we burn out, collapse and give up. Only then do we finally let go!
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Giving up on perfection is actually a good thing. Letting go of unrealistic expectations is also a good thing.
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Give up and let go of what’s belittling you. It’s freeing!
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my 🐜 shorts by @sulayoga (woman-run, small-scale clothing line made by a yogi for yogis)

This is why! 💕 #veganfortheanimals

Do you ever wonder about those reoccurring stories and thoughts that come up as soon as you try to meditate? What are the accompanying sensations? Where do you feel them? Your chest? Hips? Or your neck? Are you “stuck”?
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We most often experience physical discomfort, even pain, way before we are able to truly understand it. Yes, sometime it’s simple as shitty alignment in the pose. But more often than not, the tightness and pain in the body are a result of a lot more than just our lack of flexibility. We know we are (physically) stuck, but we don’t really know why. Sometimes it doesn’t even make sense — you’re open, you’re strong, and yet your body won’t allow you to do what your asking of it. Why not?! The answer lays in the realm of the unseen, unheard, and unacknowledged.
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The only way to move past our stuck place is to expand our field of attention and awareness. In other words, go into our unconscious. “The tightness in our chest,” writes @jack_kornfield, “will become sadness, and the sadness may become grief. As we finally begin to grieve, the pattern will release.”
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That simply means staying curious about everything that rises up. You have to wonder and question and watch. This is practice of mindfulness. And it starts with ourselves. Remember, “the task of meditation,” as Jack Kornfield explains, “is to drop below the level of the repeated recorded messages, to sense and feel the energy that brings it up.”
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So what do you do? Practice.
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Leggings by @werkshop 🦁

I think I may have just mastered the art of the #selfie 🌴

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