Green Smoothies

Smoothies from Raw Family bring Valla herself into your living room to show you how to prepare 7 of our all-time favorite green smoothies. In addition to demonstrating how easy it is to blend up exotic concoctions, Valla shares many timesaving tips and answers the most frequently asked questions about making delicious green smoothies. This DVD is a must see for anyone interested in becoming a green smoothie pro!

THE DOWNSIDE OF YOGA Many mind-altering substances are dangerous, expensive, and illegal. Yoga is safe and free, and won’t get you in trouble with the law. It doesn’t require a prescription, either. So how come for every one yoga student, there are hundreds of other people pouring out a cocktail, lighting up a joint, or snorting coke. Yoga has one major liability: it requires self-effort. Drugs and booze do it for you; with yoga, you’ve got to do it for yourself. If you’re going to start a hatha routine or a meditation practice, you won’t get far without discipline and self-awareness. It’s a lot easier to take a pill or sip a martini. But when you practice yoga, you come out a stronger, healthier, calmer, more creative, and more effective person, just like other healthy and calming activities like fishing, meditation or artistic pursuits. See thenatureinsider.com for related information. Can you say the same for the person who relies on alcohol or drugs? For those who are willing to do the work, there is a better way than drugs. I respect the right of each individual to make their own lifestyle choices. Yet when I think of my fellow high school students who didn’t make it, or my friend Jack in his wheelchair, I’m grateful for yoga. For those who are willing to do the work, there is a better way than drugs. 100% NATURAL HIGH Sit up comfortably with your head, neck, and spine straight. Close your eyes and allow your body to relax. Your back stays straight but it should feel at ease, not forced or strained. Pay attention to your breath for a few minutes. It should be even, slow, and smooth. If it’s jerky or shallow, relax another minute till your breathing is a little deeper and flows without jerking or stopping. Bring your full awareness to your heart. Focus not so much on the physical organ as on the feeling of peace and expansiveness that radiates out from your heart area. If thoughts or mental images interrupt your meditation, simply dismiss them. Don’t fight with your uninvited thoughts. Just turn your attention back to your breath or to the warm, expansive feeling in your heart. After a few minutes, release your attention into the peaceful silence you sense within. Enjoy the state of silent, pure awareness. Open your eyes and sit quietly. Assimilate the tranquility and mental clarity you experienced in your meditation. GETTING HIGH ON AIR When my friend John visited a psychiatric institute in Bangalore, India, he was amazed to find two signs pointing down two separate corridors, one stating “Psychiatric Emergencies” and the other “Kundalini Cases.” The staff there explained that while we in the West often see psychiatric disorders resulting from ill-advised drug experimentation, in India (where most people can’t afford drugs) some suffer mental breakdowns from ill-advised spiritual practices. The most common cause is launching into advanced pranayama (breathing exercises) without years of preparatory exercises under the close guidance of a competent teacher. Some pranayama techniques involve hyperventilation; others call for breath retention over extensive periods of time. Both can produce a type of euphoria—and both can cause serious damage when performed with greater enthusiasm than wisdom. Breath retention, in particular, can cause brain damage, neurological disorders, and serious heart abnormalities. Pranayama has its place in the exploration of higher states of consciousness, but no yoga student should engage in advanced breathing practices without guidance.

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