Gold Coast Yoga Centre November 2015 Newsletter.

Namaste Yogis & Yoginis,
There are a lot of interpretations of Brahmacarya (one of the branches on the first limb of Yoga – Yama/observances). Many people interpret it to mean celibacy, abstinence or restraint. All of these definitions indicate a holding back from action. My understanding of it is that it comes from the root words “Brahman” meaning the highest state of consciousness/beingness possible; and “acarya” meaning “to walk”.

So, to me, rather than a holding back, it implies a state of awareness, and living that. Walking in the highest state of consciousness that one can. This has many deep and profound implications, but it can also be applied to the simplest of daily activities- from placing down your yoga mat quietly, to being aware of whether the clothes, food and products you buy come from an ethical supply chain. It is being aware of the consequences of your actions, words and thoughts -  both immediate consequences; and the repercussions that follow like dominoes. It is being fully present and acting with kindness, discernment and compassion. I believe it is what the Buddhists refer to as mindfulness. It is attempting to live your highest life, your highest values, your highest potential. In a profound sense it is living with the mind of Brahman and letting that guide you. It is truly recognising we are all one. In this state, there are no opposites, no desires, no lack, no fear, no anger, no stories, no ego – only presence, love, peace, contentment and truth. There is no separation of you and others, or of you and Nature, or of you and the whole. There just is.

When you live with this as your reference point – you cannot help but live more skilfully. You cannot think or act in a way that harms, as you only harm yourself. It feels uncomfortable to even think in a negative or angry way about others. You are naturally tuned in to what creates the greatest harmony within (yourself – body, mind & spirit), with others and with the planet – and you naturally want to live this way!

Here are some ways that you can make a difference and live more mindfully, more harmoniously with others – in the yoga room, at home, in the community, and on the planet:

Be mindful in the yoga room – no talking in the yoga room (and quietly in the foyer), no loud noise, strong scents, or activity that disturbs the serenity of others. Help keep the room tidy and clean – wash your cups, use a black mat if your mat leaves rubber pills behind, no water bottles or excess stuff in the practice room. Try to be mindful of your teachers time and need to be of service to all equally. Make a time to chat if you have longer questions.

Be mindful of your dollar – spend money on local, ethical, organic products and services whenever possible. Try to focus on needs and experiences and minimise wants and material products. Check out the sources of your energy suppliers and super investments. Many energy companies, banks and super providers invest in dirty fuel technologies that harm communities, health and environment. Powershop (energy), Future Super, Australian Ethical Investments and Bendigo bank are examples where you can make choices that impact not only yourself, but communities and the environment more positively. Also be mindful of how you make your dollar. Try to work in jobs that serve and support others and the environment whenever possible.

Be mindful that you don't always know how another is feeling, try not to assume – be compassionate at all times, whenever possible. Open up a dialogue and truly listen/connect.

Be mindful of your ego – the stories of our mind, our fears and emotions can lead us to act in less than skilful ways! Try to take a breath/count to 10 before acting or responding whenever possible. Many teachers suggest asking questions “is it true?” “is it kind”, “is it necessary”. Allow time to pass if you can – most problems/challenges will sort themselves out. Whatever the method – these are all examples of  a daily life application of pratyahara (sense withdrawal) and allow us to go in, connect to our centre, our highest self/mind and act from that place – not our egoic reaction.

Be mindful of your goals in life – to be healthy, to act from love, to be more compassionate, to be authentic – whatever they are – use them as a yardstick when you have to act/make a decision.

Be mindful of process – we are not perfect – be kind to yourself as you attempt to live this way. Learn from mistakes and let them be the motivation/foundation of more skilful actions in future. Karma yoga instructs us – do the absolute best that you can, but let go of the outcome. Be aware of negative self talk, and remember to re-align with your goals/highest vision of how you want to be, and simply begin again.

Being mindful of these few things and more will lead to a more Sattvic (balanced/harmonious) life and state of being for all – and it feels great!


Like a well-tuned race car, our bodies sometimes need a support team to keep us in top running order when the challenges load up. Here are a few of our favourite practitioners – who complement our yoga practice and support when we get off track.

Ayurveda is the sister science to yoga taking care of body, diet and lifestyle. We recommend the lovely Jade Ragunathan from Ayurveda Santosha inCurrumbin Waters  0415 051 478

Matthew Butel, Currumbin Beach Chiropractic – I have been going to Matthew for about 15 years now... he is my first port of call whenever I hit a crisis point in my body  (07) 5525 0622

Zuma Health – after my recent mould challenge – my nervous system was really out of whack. Luckily Dr Matt from Zuma's passion is healing the nervous system and getting it back to great working order. He certainly helped mine fire up again  
(07) 5535 1167

Kat Woods – not only Mark's beautiful wife, but a great acupuncturist who has supported our yoga community for over a decade. Balance, heal and restore your energy/body systems with this ancient art that beautifully complements yoga.  For bookings you can contact Kat on (07) 55766 455

There are many other wonderful healers and practitioners in our community – we do keep some business cards in the foyer, and we love to know who has really helped you so we can pass it on.


In living yoga, we aim to live in the most harmonious way we can, being kind to our bodies, to others, to animals and the planet whenever possible. Here are a few tips & products for natural health, hygiene and beauty that I and others in the community use:
Miessence products – locally made and a world first organic body range – Miessence offer a wide range of natural, organic health and beauty products that are ethical and care for the earth. I particularly love the foundation cream and wear it daily, knowing I am not harming myself, animals or the planet.

To shop and order you can go to, or if you order at the front desk or email us on you can get free shipping and save even more. Evohe is another fantastic brand or make your own!

Castor oil – I don't use mascara – castor oil provides a nice sheen and nourishes my eyes and lashes. It is also fantastic for eyebrows, regrowth and it is the only hair management product I use. My wild hair needs a bit of taming. I have tried many oils, but they tend to go up the hair shaft and make my scalp oily – castor oil doesn't – it stays on the ends and gives my hair texture.

Special occasion makeup – I use Sunrider mascara occasionally for a more dramatic look. Sunrider are another ethical company that provide non toxic, no animal tested mascara. We can order for you. Lavera and Eva Peron (in health food shops) are other brands to consider for the occasional splurge.

Luscious lips – I either use castor oil, my absolute favourite lip balm (and I have tried MANY)  by Alter Eco or for a splash of extra colour Hemp lip tints by Hemp Organics. We have these gorgeous tints in our store! 

There are many recipes online for toothpaste but I like to use either Tooth Tonic drops & Black Whitener from

For shampoo I either use bi-carb mixed with a little Green Aussie Cleaner (100% natural) followed by an apple cider vinegar rinse (about 1;10 mix with warm water). I then put a little castor oil on the tips while the hair is still damp. For convenience, or just for a change, I also use natural products from THE GOOD OIL.

Skin loves oil. According to Ayurveda, different body types respond best to different oils. (Book in with Jade to discover your constitution). I find most skins love sesame oil. Massage your body before a shower – meditate for 5-10 mins (yes, nude – or wear a robe) then shower off. This is a fantastic way to nourish your skin and improve its resilience and condition. Cacao butter, shea butter and coconut oil are other favourites.

Deodorant – we stock a fantastic, natural, organic cream deodorant that actually WORKS!! It is the best we have found – but it is a personal choice. Miessence also have a great deodorant, and there are plenty to try at Wray Organics too including by second fave – the Rose Deo spray by Waleda!

I might mention a few eco cleaning options next month, there's also plenty of info on the net!
A mix of rosewater or witch-hazel, bi-carb & a few drops of your fave essential oil can also be fab.

Of course nothing beats the inner glow of natural health.  A great diet and regular fresh air, sleep, rest, meditation, yoga and other exercise all contribute. As does joy, love and kindness. In Ayurveda when your Ojas is high (the esoteric form of Kapha) your skin, eyes and hair are luminous. My nutrition teacher used to tell us all the time that no external product is needed when your digestive system is working well and you are eating a pure diet. It's about balance, finding what works for you, and sometimes it's just for fun.




Saturday 14th November  
Tallebudgera Community Hall
$35 // Doors Open at 6.30pm
We are really looking forward to the concert next weekend. Dave Stringer is a great favourite of all of us here at the centre. His Kirtan concerts are high energy, heart-felt, passionate, transformative and fun. The music is both melodic and rhythmic. Sing, clap, dance and be set free!! Thank you to Anita Colenbrander for putting the event together on our behalf - in collaboration with One Touring

For info on how to purchase tickets click here. You can also pay at the GCYC front desk and there will be door sales vailable at the door if not sold out. 

Phyo, Fritz and Joel

This month, we'd love to introduce three yogi friends – Phyo, Fritz and Joel are great mates as well as dedicated practitioners. Joel & Phyo met while working together and are housemates, and Fritz is their near neighbour and good friend. All three started yoga with Anisa (Sprout Yoga), one of our community and a wonderful teacher in her own right. She introduced them to the GCYC to develop their practice and we are very grateful (and to have her here as well!)

Both Joel and Phyo recommend staying with the practice. As Pattabhi himself said “practice, practice and all will follow”. Fritz also has this to offer... "Mens sana in corpore sano." Latin saying... "Healthy mind in healthy body."

They have lots to share...

We gave each of them a few questions and here are there answers:

I have been practicing Yoga for approximately 3 years. Started practicing with Anisa (Anisa Poonja), who by the way is a really good teacher (much gratitude, Anisa). I fell in love with the practice after my first class and there was no looking back. I have been diligent in my practice since then. I practiced with her for a year and later was introduced to Mark and GCYC.

I am benefiting immensely from this practice and it gives me strength, stability & flexibility in physical, mental and emotional aspects. Yoga also encourages constant self-enquiry. In saying that, it’s only been 3 years and there’s a lot more work to be done transforming body and mind. Yoga is a life long spiritual practice for me.
If there is a life lesson from yoga, it’ll be ‘To let go!’

Why GCYC? The Teachers, The Teachings, The Staff,The Sangha and The space.

Advice to someone new will be, not to give up. Give time, not just one or two classes and give up but consistent practice. ‘Practice and all is coming!’ .- Sri K. Pattabhi Jois.

Life motto: Life Motto? Honestly, I don’t have one. (Although he signs off his message with “May all beings be happy and may all beings be at peace!” I reckon that's a great life guide)

About my Dharma brothers, I met Joel through work and later he moved in as flat-mate. It’s been 6 years and we are very close. Met Fritz 3 years ago when he was practicing with Anisa and he’s a very good friend. I am grateful to have the teachers, GCYC, the sangha and my Dharma brothers.
May all beings be happy and may all beings be at peace!

I have been practicing for 3 years this November.
It gives me balance and a lot of joy so that's why I keep it up :)
It teaches you to stay humble and grounded.
I came to GCYC through Anisa and have never looked back: )!
Just stick to it and have patience it will slowly start to change you!
My family, friends and partner are very important to me: )!
Haha a life motto... no not really, I am still young and have lots to learn!!

I started practising with Anisa 3 1/2 years ago and joined the Gold Coast Yoga Centre in October 2013 as Anisa went to Namibia. Initially I started with 2 times a week  and increased this to 3 to 4. Since a year ago  I practise 5 to 6 times a week.

Physically: I feel physically lighter and more agile and movement through a greater range is possible. It feels good which is also a major motivation to continue going and explore more.

Mentally: The ability to concentrate is improved through the focus on the breath and the movement attempting to keep this aligned. Also attempting being in the moment and focusing on what I am doing right now. This goes beyond the physical practise and again I am trying to implement this in everyday situations.

Emotionally: Giving in and surrender. Also accepting your current limitations and dealing with those. This goes also beyond the Asana practise. Becoming less ego driven.

Spiritually: Attempting to let go of things and focus on just being. Whilst still being attached to materialistic things attempting not to overvalue those and accepting what is rather than focusing what is not. This is not just meant in materialistic terms but also general.

Benefits: Difficult to shorten this to a simple sentence as I feel there are numerous benefits practising Yoga. Spontaneously speaking perhaps being in the moment, accepting your current limitations and developing more empathy and value for others. Perhaps becoming more aware of things which does change ones outlook and actions in life.

Advice: Enjoy what you are doing.  Be open to explore new possibilities and keep practising/ learning.

Other things that are important in my life: Physically jogging and moderate weight training. Literature, classical music, different cultures and customs, travel, family, good company and socialising, animals and in particular my dog Gypsy, exploring life and new things.

Life motto: Mens sana in corpore sano. Latin saying...  Healthy mind in healthy body.

I met Joel and Phyo through practise with Anisa. As they are living close where I am we go together to the GCYC and apart from seeing each other on several days during the week at practise we frequently socialise outside of the GCYC. We do come from fairly different backgrounds but share the love of Yoga and get along really well and I think we are a good support system for each other in many aspects.
We hope you have enjoyed getting to know these 3 great guys a little better!!! They have certainly gained some beautiful insight from practice, and benefit from having a sangha (spiritual family/community).

We will continue to feature stories from our community so you can get to know each other better and share your wisdom! Please feel free to volunteer!!! We'd love to hear from you if you feel you would like to share a little of your journey with us – just email us at

January 4th -8th January, 2016
Tallebudgera Valley Community Hall


Copyright © 2015 Gold Coast Yoga Centre, All rights reserved.
Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp