© 2015 by Marie Blair Yoga LLC

Birmingham, Alabama

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October 2, 2019

If I were to pick one personal challenge I return to daily it would be containing the ego.

Ego. As a yoga teacher I often caution my students to not let their egos shape their practice. It doesn’t matter what the posture looks like. Instead, let curiosity take the lead observing the breath and the movement. Yet when training with other teachers I can forget. Am I doing it right? How do I look? My competitive impulse can tweak my body and my ego.

 As a volunteer I find my ego needs stroking. Was I...

September 6, 2019

The Summer Day

Who made the world?

Who made the swan, and the black bear?

Who made the grasshopper?

This grasshopper, I mean-

the one who has flung herself out of the grass,

the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,

who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-

who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.

Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.

Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.

I don't know exactly what a prayer is.

I do know how to pay...

July 15, 2019

I’ve returned from a church mission trip to McAllen, Texas. My heart is heavy. Here’s what I saw and heard:

Families camped out in the brutal heat on the Mexican side of a bridge in Nuevo Progress – a legal port of entry. The border patrol agent would not or could not say how many asylum seekers were processed each day.

Neighboring towns on each side of the Rio Grande –Progresso, Texas, and Nuevo Progress, Mexico –Brownsville, Texas, and Matamoros, Mexico. Historically, these communities have been...

May 21, 2019

I walked into a coffee shop to kill time and write a blog on kindness. And what do I experience immediately but a nice, young man standing at the counter. What is a cortado, I ask? And a flat white? I was struck both by the array of choices and their prices. As he described the first choice, I said I’ll have that one. And then he said, put it on my tab. Oh no, I responded. Why not, he said. So I thanked him (again and again actually as if it was so very extraordinary) and sat down with my fancy...

April 1, 2019

I’ve returned from a brief experience of monastic life and realize it’s not for me.

It came as a surprise. 

I expected to step into the rhythm of the Buddhist monastery responding effortlessly to the intermittent periods of noble silence – over meals, during clean up, whenever the gong sounded, and of course, during the multiple daily sitting and walking meditations.

And I did savor the vegan food, respected the openhearted, albeit quiet, acceptance of visitors and experienced that magical stillnes...

February 7, 2019

Let’s turn “practice makes perfect” on its head. Instead, practice, the art of exercising a skill repeatedly, may not lead to perfection but to maturity, i.e., seeing life as it is.  I’m thinking about something other than skill development in sports or music, for example, but instead, life practices that foster well-being. The yogic tradition speaks to living skillfully. Neuroscientific research supports the link between well-being as a skill strengthened by outlook, attention, resilience and g...