Los Angeles, CA
I began practicing yoga while studying in Amsterdam in 1994, primarily for it’s stress-relieving effects. At around the same time I became interested in Eastern, non-dual philosophy. I left my hometown, Dublin, Ireland, in 2001 for Chicago to take up a position as a doctoral candidate in analytic, Western philosophy at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
While in the graduate program I deepened my practice at Moksha Yoga Center in Chicago and pursued my burgeoning interest in yoga philosophy. By the Fall of 2003 I was teaching yoga and the following year took my first teacher training with Ana Forrest (I would later take an advanced training with Ana, and spend time assisting her at various locations in the States, as well as teaching at Forrest Yoga Institute in Santa Monica). I also dived deeper into meditation and chanting, and spent time at the Sivananda ashram in the Bahamas and the Sivananda center in Chicago.
In the summer of 2005 I made the difficult decision to leave the graduate program in philosophy as I could longer reconcile my spiritual life with my intellectual commitments and my spiritual life had taken precedence. I moved to Los Angeles in early 2006 and have been blessed to study with some of the world’s most-respected yoga teachers. I completed a teacher training with Saul David Raye that same year. In 2007 I completed the level I iRest®/Yoga Nidra training with Richard Miller with the intention of setting up a program for troops with PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) at the Los Angeles VA.
The training far surpassed any of my expectations. I was particularly gratified to discover that the training manual contained a wealth of philosophical sources and a sophisticated treatment of the non-dual metaphysical teachings underlying yoga nidra. The practice of iRest/Yoga Nidra was deeply restorative, rejunvenative, and grounding and resonated with me on every level.
iRest/Yoga Nidra has given me an effective tool for cultivating equanimity in my day to day life. I have never been particularly equanimous, and always had difficulty regulating my emotions and soothing my anxiety. I’ve experienced many physical traumas in my life which have contributed to my anxiety and feeling of being unsafe in my body. In 1992 I was in a serious car accident, after which I had PTSD.
Practicing yoga and meditation has helped me get connected to my body and to harness inner stability and calm my mind. My practice has showed me that anxiety is first and foremost a physiological phenomenon which manifests in the mind. iRest/Yoga Nidra has helped me go deeper with my meditation practice and my ability to be at home in my body and accept my emotions regardless of what circumstance I find myself in. This is the gift I want to share with others.