Grace Cathedral Sound Symphony
meditation, wellness

Yoga & Wellness Newsletter January 2019

Happy new year, and happy new moon! Below are some upcoming events, followed by an art exhibit, online freebies, and the January happiness calendar. If you are interested in hiking and Camino de Santiago pilgrimage, check out my Camino Provides blog for more exciting events in January, including a labyrinth walk.

The photo of the full moon eclipse over the San Francisco Bay was captured by one of my favorite photographers, Joël Thai.

Photo by Joël Thai -
Photo by Joël Thai –

You will have a chance to witness a “blood moon” eclipse on January 20-21, 2019. To see times, viewing locations, or to view live streaming video of the event, check out this website. East Bay residents might consider Chabot Space & Science Center’s Total Lunar Eclipse Viewing party on January 20th for just $8 with hot chocolate included!

Bay Area Events

FREE Sound Meditation – West Berkeley Library
Tuesday, January 8th 6:30-7:30 pm
West Berkeley Library
1125 University Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702

Come on by and enjoy this free library hosted community sound bath! No prior yoga or meditation experience needed, ages 12 and up are all welcome. This is a seated meditation, but bring layers as the room is chilly. More details:

About the Presenter
Melissa Felsenstein is a certified 750 hr yoga therapist and sound healer. A self-proclaimed “reformed” relaxer, Melissa focuses her work on restoring the nervous system through the use of live sound with quartz crystal singing bowls and specifically tuned gongs. Melissa used these unique instruments as therapeutic tools to rid herself of severe anxiety and depression.

Her mission is to offer others a soft, receiving, space for inward journeying, truthful listening, and sustaining change. Learn more about her at

Start Your Year Mindfully with Domonick Wegesin
Wednesdays: January 9th, 16th, and 23rd @ 7:30 – 9:15 pm
Namaste Rockridge 5416 College Ave, Oakland, CA 94618

Domonick Wegesin was one of my yoga teacher training instructors, and I always recommend his classes. He has put together this three-week workshop at a great price and time, to take place at the Namaste Rockridge studio. Domonick is truly awesome. While everyone has a different experience, I had a few kriyas (emotional breakthroughs) in his classes. He’s known as “the opener” – and if you take this workshop or his classes, you’ll see why. Learn more at
About the workshop
Mindfulness provides tools that help us work with our habits. The New Year is an auspicious time to recommit to your personal evolution, however that might manifest for you. You may be developing a new self-care regime, or working to eliminate habits that you know are no longer serving your well-being. You may be interested in finding ways to cope with a world that doesn’t make sense to you.
In this short 3-week mindfulness primer, Domonick will introduce ways of using the power of Choice to navigate your ship in the direction you choose. Whether you are interested in eliminating unuseful habits or developing new habits, these mindful tools can serve you well.
This course can also serve as a means of rebooting an existing mindfulness practice that has fallen into disuse.
Dr. Domonick Wegesin is a yogi-neuroscientist-dancer with a bent towards meditation and the healing arts. He moved to the Bay Area from New York City where he conducted neuroimaging research focused on the aging brain, as a Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at Columbia University. Domonick now trains the brains and bodies of his yoga students, helping them wake up to their mental, emotional and physical experience in a way that cultivates awareness, acceptance and ease.
Price: $80 Register online

Joe Lurie on Globalization and Its Cultural Disconnects
Wednesday, January 16, 2019, 6 pm
Commonwealth Club 110 The Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA 94105

Punk? Patient? Militant? Monk?

Based on his recently released, expanded edition of the award-winning Perception and Deception: A Mind-Opening Journey Across Cultures, Joe Lurie will present a spirited and insightful exploration of cross-cultural miscommunications in an increasingly globalized, polarizing world.
Wed, Jan 16 / 6:00 pm
The Commonwealth Club: 110 The Embarcadero
Toni Rembe Rock Auditorium
San Francisco, 94105
Use discount code “perception” for $10 off nonmember tickets.

Fitness for the Trail & For Life
Saturday, January 19th 8:30 am -3:30 pm

Location: Temescal Beach House, Oakland, CA
Taught by a poles instructor, Jayah Faye Paley

Fitness for the Trail & for LIFE is a full day fitness training session designed to enhance your ability to maintain physical health, quality of life, and experience happy 2019 adventures. Individualized movements and programming focus on improving your foundation, longevity, joint health, spine function, balance, posture, endurance, strength, and flexibility.
All levels welcome.

This is a small group class geared to the issues and concerns of the participants that will holistically help you maintain your ability to be outside, enjoy your adventures and maintain your quality of life.

This class (which Jayah considers to be the most important one she teaches and it’s not a poles class) meets in a stunningly beautiful location that gives us wonderful opportunities for learning or practice – rain or shine.

$135.00 (Oakland resident)
$149.00 (Non-resident)
Registration is required at East Bay Parks and Recreation.

Restorative Workshop with hot stones and hands-on healing with Anne Gregory & Stephanie Zolna
Sunday, January 20, 2 – 5 pm
Yoga Kula, Berkeley 1700 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709

Come melt your holiday stress away! Winter is a time of stillness, both for nature and ourselves. We use this time of year to rest, reflect and replenish; nourishing our body and mind to gather strength for the new season ahead. Join us as we honor winter and lay a foundation for spring by taking the time to slow down and turn inward.

Restorative yoga is a powerful and therapeutic practice that uses props to support the body combined with guided meditation to encourage stillness of the mind. Immerse yourself in this three-hour seasonal workshop experiencing a combination of gentle yoga poses, guided meditation, aromatherapy, hot stones, and healing hands-on assistance. During the practice, you will cultivate a deep sense of relaxation to soothe and cleanse your nervous system, boost your immune system and deepen mind/body awareness. Emerge with a sense of renewal and connection, better prepared to take on the challenges of the season.

All levels are welcome. Please dress comfortably in layers as you may feel chilly, even in a heated room. Hot tea provided after class.

Cost: $50 Register Online

Sound Healing Symphony at Grace Cathedral
Monday, January 28, 8 – 9:30 PM
1100 California St, San Francisco, California 94108

Grace Cathedral Sound Symphony

Sound Meditation (often known as ‘sound healing’) is the practice of listening to soothing sounds to reach profound states of clarity and relaxation. It opens up deep meditative states that are usually unreachable without considerable effort.

During the event, participants lie down and are bathed head to toe in sound— it’s a very hypnotic, ethereal experience.
You will come away with a clear mind, and a deeper appreciation for the wonder of sound. We strongly recommend this event for people who have trouble meditating, or feel like they just “can’t get there.” Give this a try :).

Sound Meditation Presents promotes the ancient healing practice of sound work as a way to affect physical health and conscious awareness.

Tickets will be available on Wednesday the 16th, at 3pm.
SF Sound Meditation at Grace Cathedral

Want a email alert when tickets are up? Sign up at

Laying down: $28
Seated in Pews: $18
Seated in Choir: $15

Location:  GRACE CATHEDRAL 1100 California St, San Francisco, CA 94108

The sound bath starts at 8pm, but all guests are asked to arrive between 7 and 7:30pm if possible. Doors will close promptly at 8pm.

As seen on TV, TODAY team tries sound therapy — take a listen

Interested in sound therapy and meditation? Members of San Francisco’s Sound Meditation Group are in Studio 1A for a special concert, and Sound Symphony co-founders Guy Douglas and Simona Asinovski stop by to talk about what the practice is all about.

Art Exhibit

Time After Time
Through January 31 at Sweetie’s Art Bar in North Beach, SF

My friend and amazingly talented co-worker, Laurel Anderson-Malinovsky, has a showing of her artwork this month at Sweetie’s Art Bar in San Francisco.

She writes, “The concept of time has always fascinated me – it is my nemesis and my inspiration. It can cause great anxiety when I can’t manage it wisely, can’t get somewhere on time or have another birthday, but has allowed me to become older, wiser, know who I am and what I want and grow and hopefully, to be a better person.

Is time infinite, or does it have a beginning and an end? Will we ever be able to travel through it, into the past or future, or are we forever to remain in our linear path from birth do death? Memories of the past and what the future might hold are the precious gifts that time has given us and ones that I will always be grateful for.

Join me to experience and explore what time means to me, observe a little time travel and to think about what meaning it has for you. The possibilities are endless…”

Location: Sweetie’s Art Bar – Black & White Gallery
475 Francisco Street
San Francisco, CA


Online Freebies

Healing the Whole Self Free Online Workshop
with Deepak Chopra
January 14 – February 10

Have you noticed how in today’s society we seem to just be “coping”, “holding it together”, “running on empty”, and just trying to “survive another day… ?” Our schedules are overloaded, we’re relying on quick-fix solutions of fast-food, we aren’t getting enough time to nurture our mind and bodies, and there is so much conflicting information out there on what’s actually going to help us!

That’s why Deepak is going to be sharing with you his brand-new online workshop “Healing the Whole Self.” This free online workshop will help you learn how to heal your entire mind, body, spirit, and emotions so that you can return to your natural state of health and happiness.

During this online event, Deepak will guide you and hundreds of thousands of people across the globe on how to take active, yet practical steps to healing and balancing your entire being.

Held over 4 weeks, each week will focus on a key aspect of the “whole-self approach”: Week 1 – Body, Week 2 – Mind, Week 3 – Emotions, Week 4 – Spirit

There will be weekly videos, guided meditations, audio webinars, helpful downloads, a private Facebook group, and more! It all begins on January 14th – for free. Sign up now!

January Happiness Calendar

Let these science-backed tips and tools be your guide this month. You’ll want to bookmark this calendar and refer to it often because there are links to articles and resources embedded in the PDF. Download happiness calendar for January.

January Happiness Calendar
Courtesy of UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center. 

Berkeley Wellness January 2019

11 Best Bets for Brain Health

Learn the best ways to protect your mind and prevent dementia from the experts at Berkeley Wellness

Anyone who promises you guaranteed strategies or products to protect and preserve your mind and prevent dementia is either trying to sell you something or suffering from wishful thinking. Still, scientists all over the world have been working to solve the mysteries of the aging brain. One important thing they have learned is that what helps the cardiovascular system also seems to benefit the brain. Here’s the latest thinking. Learn more.

That’s a wrap for January! Please let me know if you have events to consider for future newsletters. I like to include a Rumi quote somewhere in each newsletter, so here you go!

May you keep this season of stillness sacred and find peace in your hearts throughout the year.

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