Wednesday, May 9, 2012

KICKSTARTER LAUNCH:: "LA Sadhu" Documentary!!!

Kalidas and I playing Kirtan music at Bhakti Yoga Shala
My friend Kalidas and I met when I started doing "seva" (selfless service / yoga work trade) at Bhakti Yoga Shala at the beginning of this year.  He is a personal assistant to Govindas - Bhakti Yoga Shala's owner as well as my wonderful BYS Yoga Teacher Training Teacher this spring.

Kalidas and I quickly became friends as we cleaned around the shala, replacing candles and sweeping the wood floors.  Originally from India, he has led a very interesting, mystical life in spiritual communities all across the country.  Being from New Mexico, it struck me that he had spent a couple years working and meditating at an ashram in Taos, New Mexico.  Synchronicity at play again!  He's also lived up and down the coast of California as well as on the East coast.  Another thing we have in common... I have ALWAYS been a gypsy at heart... (I've lived in New Mexico, Maine, Virginia, North Carolina, New York, Washington, Norway and California just in the span of 28 years, ha!)

Anyhow life works in mysterious ways and I believe it was destiny that our paths crossed.  I had just finished a job that wasn't really in line with the direction I was wanting to go in, and was having serious doubts about my place in a sometimes cold, indifferent, materialistic and ego-driven industry, also known as Hollywood.  I needed to get my footing back.  Gain my strength again.  Renew my faith in humanity and our power for good.  It's been a truly humbling experience these last few months, just getting back to the simple things in life that mean the most to me. 

Meeting Kalidas has reminded me of what it means to lead a spiritual life with wisdom, understanding and faith as one's foundation.  Coupled with the fact I am growing deeper in my knowledge and experience of yoga in my BYS Teacher Training program, I am truly full of gratitude to be surrounded by such beautiful, wise friends! 

As Kalidas and I got to know each other better, it became apparent a documentary was in order!  I started to shoot short interviews with him, combining it with pictures and Kirtan music.  We want to document his journey as a spiritual "sadhu" (or person relying on the grace of God) with all of the unique, amazing experiences he has had.  Especially living in a place that at times can seem cold and indifferent.  This is an opportunity to brighten people's outlook and be a source of divine inspiration!  Here is a brief description of LA SADHU (our documentary project):

A chronicle of 7 days in the life of Kalidas in LA, who has had the unique experience of spending over a decade in spiritual communities.  We are invited to see Kalidas as he intends to embark on his own personal kind of spiritual test where he tries to reach his highest potential through a series of marathon-type walks, a strict diet, specific mantra and kirtan chants, and Seva (selfless service). There will be a heavy emphasis on translating less well-known points of yogic philosophy and the "sadhu" way of life (one who relies on the grace of God rather than material comforts). This combined with Kalidas' unconventional point of view and friends will make it an entertaining and humorous account of a guy who is caught living like a spiritual dinosaur in the grind of modern day high-tech society that for the most part could care less. Also Kalidas' life as a sacred Kirtan chant musician will be revealed. Kalidas remains strangely optimistic and driven, and we're all wondering why! 

Here is the link to our kickstarter project that we JUST LAUNCHED::: 

As you know, kickstarter is a fundraising program that gives you an allotted amount of time to raise a specific amount of money to create your project.  We now have 29 days to raise $7,500 (by June 8th)...

This includes a budget for crew, camera & audio equipment, craft services, rewards to our donors, memory cards, marketing, transportation, film festival entry fees and kickstarter fees.

Please take a look! Any donations you give will be received with the UTMOST GRATITUDE and of course we really appreciate you taking the time to see what we are embarking on and sharing with everyone you know.

Thank you so much everyone!!!


Monday, May 7, 2012

Yoga Pool Party Time!!!!

I wanted to share some new awesome photos from our Bhakti Yoga Shala Teacher Training, Spring 2012!!!  Included here is Tadasana/Kirtan day, Acrayoga day plus our beautiful sunny day by the pool!  So happy to be sharing this beautiful journey with you all :)

Oziris, David and I at Tadasana Yoga Festival's 12 Hour Kirtan at Bhakti Yoga Shala!!

YTT beach day picnic!

John, Sonia, Jazmine & Jessica!

Hard to tell but that's me cheering on sweet Jessica (center photo) who daringly jumped headfirst into the freezing Pacific and checked off her bucket list! :)

Jessica and Victoria!

AcraYoga day: Flying Pose! (combines: Acrobat, Thai massage and Yoga)

Flying pose with Govindas spotting Rob and John!

Flying Whale Pose with Laura, Pamela & Victoria... such lovely heart opening pose!

Pool Party getting started at my house with Jazmine, John and Tony and some YUMMY guacamole made by Alexis!

John, Tony and I!

Victoria fixin' some fresh watermelon. Yum!

Oziris so happy by the pool :)

Julia you are awesome!

Brave, first one to jump in!

Oziris the monkey man makes some waves!

All of us Bhakti Yoga TT's together!

Enjoying the hot tub after cannon balls in the cold pool!


Alexis on the rope swing!

that's me going for it, ha!

so happy to be there!

Laura looks so excited!


Valentino, a true entertainer at heart...

captures the moment perfectly!

Cawabunga Tom!
Kalidas and I doing some final touches on our kickstarter video for our new and upcoming DOCUMENTARY, titled "LA SADHU." so excited to be working on this!! more on this to come SOON!!!!

I've had SUCH an amazing and beautiful experience so far learning, getting to know and bonding with everyone at Bhakti Yoga Shala Teacher Training, Spring 2012.  All of you are such beautiful gems inside and out! This is such a sweet, awesome, fun and positive time of growth through our devotion, love and joy.  Our yoga practice is such a gift that has brought us together.  Feels like home!

Namaste <3