All night healing and expressive arts fire circle ceremony from Saturday midnight until dawn.
Orientation begins at midnight.
What happens during the all night fire circle ritual?
Many of us have been moved by music, art and dance. Something happens when we “lose” our selves for a while on the dance floor. Bliss, ecstasy, frustrations come and move, and sometimes we break through something. We break through the voices we carry that sometimes say: we are tired, we are not beautiful, we are not whole.
This model is designed to cultivate our energy together. It is designed to be in service together and to create an atmosphere for deep listening, where the musicians, which can include all of us, are swept up together in the energy that moves through the circle. Through the timeless action of circling the fire, in part from the pulsing of moving closer to music and away, and closer and away, there is a breaking away of the armor. The pieces we sensitive people need to cope day to day, come down and we begin to expand and open.
In this expanded place of service, we remember how much more capable we are. We call ourselves back to a presence we did not even realize we were missing. Our connections to our hearts come back to us. Our acceptance of our bodies comes back to us. Gratitude for our minds comes back to us. A genuine caring for others comes back to us. A connection to the other living creatures around us is remembered.
I can share of singing together, of brewing teas on the root fire, of dancing through sweat, of tears, laughter, truths being spoken, and of people sharing wisdom, of rattling for one another in the space, and of spontaneous words to new chants moving the group. I can write about epic dawns of deep peace, with renewed faith in humanity, and in our selves. But even then, there are the pieces left untold in relation to the Unseen beliefs of what is happening. What I can say, is that we look to make something Whole from something Broken. We honor our Ancestors. And we aim to embody in service, to be animated as divine beings between Heaven and Earth. For this small amount of time together, we agree to take risks to explore all that we may be capable of. Our dance is a healing ceremony, a rite of passage, and an honoring of all that we are.
Jason Cohen, the creator of Forestdance, has experienced numerous healing and expressive arts rituals around the world.
His knowledge, experience, sensitivity and training as a ritual facilitator and his life long pursuit of exploring passion and subtlety in music, has led him in service to offering 27 Forestdance Gatherings.
These gatherings have taken place in 7 US states and has happened 9 times in Costa Rica. These are powerful transformational ritual gatherings designed to bring people into their full power through the process of burning off symptomatic energies, coming fulling present, and balancing heart, mind, body and spirit inside and out of the sacred fire circle. When not facilitating one of these gatherings, Jason often is composing and performing with his musical projects Incus and Sacred Side Project, or directing events for the heARTbeat Collective. His latest endeavor has been as the executive producer of Unifier Festival, a larger healing and expressive arts festival with a mission that includes bringing people together to create a community owned Land Trust. Jason is a community organizer deeply committed to creating spaces where people can become empowered and inspired.
Jason is a proud papa, and has held ceremonial space and studied with many blessed teachers, including Suzanne Rancourt (Abenaki Bear Clan), Mandaza Kandemwa (Shona), and Malidoma Some (Dagara), and takes much of his inspiration from his humble and direct connections to nature and his ancestors.
Sacred Movement: Afro Flow Yoga™ with Leslie Salmon Jones, Pilin Anice and Jeff Jones
Afro Flow Yoga™ celebrates the joy of meditative movement–uniting body, mind, spirit and breath–with the healing rhythms of live drumming. This unique fusion of Vinyasa flow, Kundalini yoga and electrifying dances of the African Diaspora will energize your chakras and release the body from stress. Afro Flow Yoga™ explores the union of African spirituality, yogic principals and the freedom of movement we are intrinsically blessed with through nature’s four elements: Earth, Air, Fire and Water. Rejoice in a blissful flow that will expand your consciousness and leave you simultaneously feeling empowered, connected, renewed, grounded and peaceful.
-Leslie Salmon Jones is a professional dancer, certified holistic personal trainer, wellness coach, yoga instructor, seasoned public speaker and creator of Afro Flow Yoga™. Leslie began ballet and Afro Caribbean dance at the age of seven. It was through her intensive dance training at the esteemed Alvin Ailey American Dance Center that Leslie was first introduced to yoga, and nearly twenty years later, she remains dedicated to her yoga practice. Leslie had the opportunity to study and train with world-renowned masters of dance, yoga and spirituality. She is deeply grateful for the guidance of all of her teachers at Alvin Ailey, White Cloud Yoga, Sivananda, Jivamukti, Universal Force Yoga and for the spiritual guidance of Maude Evans, Gurunam, Mailidoma Some and Mandaza Kandemwa. Leslie attributes her strong foundation and core values to her mother, Beverley Salmon, former nurse and grassroots politician, and her father, Dr. John Douglas Salmon, Canada’s first black Chief of Surgery, both civil rights activists.
A determined proponent of community outreach, while living in NYC, Leslie acted as a consultant for the New York Knicks’ “Healthy Lifestyle Clinics”, designed to increase self-esteem in youth. She served as a board member for Free Arts NYC and the United Nations Association of New York (UNA NY). She continues to volunteer as a facilitator and mentor for various outreach and empowerment programs in Boston and New York City.
A Toronto, Ontario native of Jamaican descent, Leslie has called NYC and Boston home for over 15 years. She currently teaches weekly classes in Boston, and in addition, teaches workshops and retreats at The Omega Institute in NY, the Raw Spirit Festival, and in Hawaii and Canada. The concept of fusing dance and yoga was Leslie’s inspiration born from traveling throughout West Africa and the Caribbean. The powerful connection between African spirituality, yogic principals and the intrinsic expression of movement through nature’s elements inspired Leslie to create Afro Flow Yoga™. She has also produced two wellness DVDs: “Core Strength: Back to Basics” and “Core Power: Radiate the Energy Within” which are both available online or at Whole Foods. Currently, Leslie is an Ambassador for lululemon athletica’s Boston, MA store and teaches Afro Flow Yoga, Core Strength and Core Power throughout the metro Boston area.
-Jeff W Jones is a bassist, vocalist and percussionist . and Jeff Jones Zone is his a jazz, R&B, easy listening and serious dance ensemble. He is a 4th generation native Bostonian and long-time resident of NYC. Jeff spent many years touring with bands throughout the US, Canada, Saudi Arabia, West Africa and the Caribbean. He performed with various artists at Scullers Jazz Club, Regatta Bar, opened for Little Richard at the Democratic National Convention and for Al Green at the Bank of America Center. Jeff performed with one of the exclusive band for the Inauguration of President Obama, providing bass and vocals which brought thousands of attendees to the dance floor. He also played at the Inauguration of Governor Deval Patrick. Jeff works with Morley (www.morleymusic.org) a New York singer songwriter–and several local dance bands and jazz ensembles on a weekly basis.
Jeff’s influences are the Isley Brothers, Booker T and the MG’s, The Jazz Crusaders, Joe Sample, Marcus Miller, Slam Steward, Sly and the Family Stone and Incognito to name just a few.
Jeff is married to Leslie Salmon Jones, a fitness and life coach guru, with whom he co-owns start-up business, Afro Flow Yoga. He plays percussion for their classes and workshops both locally and as far away as Jamaica and Hawaii. Jeff and Leslie have produced two fitness DVDs: Core Strength: Back To Basics and Core Power: Radiate the Power Within (sold at Whole Foods and online). They are currently working on their third DVD for Afro Flow Yoga. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org and check out www.afroflowyoga.co
KULA: CELEBRATING COMMUNITY WITH ACROYOGA
Open your practice with the ease, comfort and the support of community. All levels, all ages, all people are welcome to join this AcroYoga class. Kula is a Sanskrit word meaning community of hearts. This class will provide a safe environment to explore trust, connection and playfulness all in the spirit of coming together. Together we will touch upon all the disciplines that AcroYoga offers, combining Yoga, Acrobatics, and Thai Massage. Grounded in the breath, we will draw upon the natural forces of gravity and “metta” loving kindness to encourage the body to let go of fear and tension. When people align their intentions, the goodness they create reverberates in all directions. Students are requested to have familiarity with yoga. No partner needed!
Brian loves to bring a playful spirit to his classes and share from his heart with all communities he connects with. Brian is a certified AcroYoga teacher, having completed teacher training with Jason Nemer and Jenny Sauer-Klein. Brian is also a certified Baptiste Power Yoga teacher, having completed Level 1 & 2 with Baron Baptiste. Brian is drawn to the practice of AcroYoga because it allows the playfulness in each of us to shine bright. The balance of acrobatics, Thai massage and yoga do wonders to heal not only our bodies, but our hearts and our minds as well.
Coeli Marsh: Slow Flow & Deep Release
This class is opportunity for you to move, stretch, strengthen, and then relax and restore together. We will begin with a dynamic and accessible Vinyasa yoga sequence, and then finish with deeply nurturing postures that balance, rejuvenate and calm your body and mind.
Originally a student of Iyengar yoga, Coeli found the Baptiste method in 1998. She became a Master Baptiste teacher, with a specialization in the craft of training teachers and classroom assistants. After falling in love with the profound work required in learning to teach yoga, she dedicated her career to this path. Coeli is the founder of the Teachers Study Project, a training and mentoring school for professional yoga teachers. She is certified by Yoga Alliance at the 500-hour and E-RYT 500 level, received her Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and is trained in outdoor leadership through Outward Bound and NOLS.
Jeffrey Villanueva began his journey of Yoga in 2007, immediately reaching an emotional level within the practice that struck him. Yoga has taught him compassion, love, and all the tenets to be cultivated as a yogi in his journey to be of service, not only to himself, but through himself to the world. He feels he has been very blessed to be in the Jivamukti community and to become a certified Jivamukti Yoga Teacher, respectfully thanking Sharon-ji, David-ji, and Russell Simmons for making that possible. Wisdom, Bhakti, Love, Respect, and friendship have come as dear instructions imparted by his beloved teacher Sangeeta Vallabhan–sometimes sweet, sometimes difficult–always in a way that encouraged him to be the best that he can be. Jeffrey continues to daily immerse himself in his sadhana so that he may share his love of and passion for yoga to inspire others as he has been genuinely inspired.
Class title: Jivamukti Yoga Open Class
A typical Open class incorporates the five tenets of Jivamukti Yoga:
- shastra (scripture)
- bhakti (devotion)
- ahimsa (kindness)
- nada (music)
- dhyana (meditation)
An Open class presents classical yoga teachings as relevant to one’s life on and off the mat, drawn from theFocus of the Month
essay, supported by chanting, breath awareness, flowing vinyasa sequences, alignment exploration, hands-on assistance, relaxation and meditation. All Open classes include 14 points
—asanas, meditation and spiritual teachings—in a sequence creatively designed by the teacher.
Flow and Steady 9:30am – 11am
Liberate your hips and shoulders, unwind your spine, and melt away tension through a vinyasa-based practice, offering special attention to skillful alignment and the potency of breath.
Daniel is co-founder and director of the Boston based yoga studio, JP Centre Yoga. His love for vinyasa is delivered with a precision influenced by the anusara, forrest, and the iyengar traditions. In addition to yoga, Daniel is a certified nutrition counselor, shiatsu practitioner, and massage therapist who has studied and taught holistic health around the globe.
“Stoking the Heart Fire – A Prana Flow Community Practice with Roberto Lim”
Join me for a Prana Flow sadhana where we relate the universal symbol of fire within our heart and offer our practice to the divine temple of our body and outwards to the community at Unifier Festival and beyond. All levels are welcome to be led by the natural rhythm of their breath in a conscious evolutionary experience.
Roberto’s teaching style is based on Prana Flow – http://shivarea.com/about-prana-flow) – which is an energetic, creative full-spectrum approach to embodying the flow of yoga created by Shiva Rea with whom Roberto has been a devoted student since 2005. He has been teaching in the Boston area since 2004 and has taught internationally leading workshops in Japan, Denmark, Italy and Lebanon, and retreats in Costa Rica, Mexico and Puerto Rico. Holding the unique divinity of each participant in the highest regard, his intention is to facilitate and support the evolutionary process of embodiment uniting mind, body and Spirit. See somavinyasayoga.com for more information. photo credit: Sky Von
Kundalini Yoga: Breathing the Inner Body of Light
Breath is life and life is breath. When breath flows, so does life.
~ Yogi Bhajan
Awaken the inner body of light, the pranamayakosha, and expand your life force with Kundalini Yoga, as taught by Yogi Bhajan. This form of yoga combines breathing exercises (pranayama) with movements, asanas, deep relaxation, chanting, and meditation to awaken a great power within you known as kundalini energy, which can heal yourself and others. In this class we will learn how to enhance, extend, and harness the power of the breath. We will draw upon our inner locks — or bandhas — to channel our heightened pranic energy. And with mudras we will explore ways to strengthen our mental focus. All levels welcome; beginners and advanced students alike will receive helpful tips for an effective home practice.
Daniel Orlansky teaches a yoga form which integrates strength and flexibility training (physical body), energy cultivation (causal body), and open awareness (subtle body). Mostly slow vinyasa flow, his practice also draws upon Kundalini Yoga, core integration, Chi Gung, and meditation. The goal in the end is to melt tension and remove blocks in the mind/body, so we can become whole. Then we “flow” and the life energy of Prana flows through us, connecting us to heaven and earth, sun and moon, and all of nature; the heart begins to sing and we find our true and authentic self.
Daniel’s journey to teaching began his first year in college, with an interest in human movement and the body mind connection; in more simple terms, as a terribly shy young man, he simply wanted to become free in his body. Explorations of Dance Therapy, Tai Chi, The Feldenkrais Method, Structural Integration, and Bioenergetics led him eventually to a master’s degree in Expressive Art Therapy/Dance Therapy from Lesley University, in Cambridge, MA.
In the mid 1980’s Daniel found a passion in Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan, and later he began studying Kali Ray TriYoga, a beautiful and meditative slow vinyasa style which emphasizes flowing with the breath with ease and fluidity. Meridian Yoga evolved out of an integration of partner resistance stretching and oriental bodywork, and is designed to systematically open the meridian energetic pathways in the body.
Daniel has been teaching for 21 years; he is certified in Jnana Yoga, Kali Ray TriYoga and Kundalini Yoga, and is the originator of Meridian Yoga. A graduate of the Boston Shiatsu School, Daniel teaches regularly at the Kripalu Center, the Omega Institute, and in Europe, and also directs yoga teacher trainings worldwide. He has co-directed two yoga DVD’s: Hands-On! Skillful Assists for Yoga Asana, and Yoga and Vision Improvement. Visit Daniel on the web atwww.yogaofenergyflow.com
Involute and dive deeper into self-understanding with this two part vinyasa class. First “Release & Let Go” as you open up to the spaciousness in your body made available when you surrender old habits with this twisted flow designed to create more room in your body, mind and heart. Then “Align & Flow” as you balance effort and ease in a sequence of classical standing poses designed to simultaneously ground the body and lighten the heart.
Caitlin offers vinyasa yoga as a medium for self-exploration and the cultivation of compassion, delivering the teachings of classical yoga with a style and ease that makes them relevant and accessible to the modern practitioner. Her classes blend the dynamic energy of Ashtanga, the precision alignment of Iyengar and the creative pulse of PranaFlow yoga. Caitlin’s presentation of the yogic path has been greatly influenced by her teachers Ganga White, Shiva Rea, Elena Brower and Andrei Ram. A mother first and teacher second, Caitlin’s priorities revolve around living gracefully so that she can parent, and teach, as an example of mindfulness and integrity.