An Interview With Lucid Practice Owners Paz Romano and Brian Levine

Lucid_Practice_Tim_Brian_Thailand
Paz Romano and Brian Levine own Lucid Practice, which is a website that offers useful information on yoga, travel and wellness; here is a link:

http://lucidpractice.com/

Q: What is Lucid Practice?

A: Lucid Practice is a community for our readers to live, learn, and give. Anything and everything from our daily practice is brought forward for conversation. By practice we mean daily thoughts, activities, captivating books and websites, to some of our opinions on love, faith, and life. We would like to help our readers “stay lucid” on their journey throughout life.

Lucid Practice is a little piece of positive energy. It’s a ripple. How far will it spread? We don’t know but we’re excited. We hope our readers will find http://www.lucidpractice.com to be a useful daily resource for living a more loving, conscious, healthy, lucid life. We focus on yoga, travel, wellness, and art.

Q: What inspired you to start it?

A: Lucid Practice began as a “blog journal.” We intended to keep record of our thoughts and of the lucid articles and videos we came across day to day. We thought Lucid Practice would serve as a central hub of positivity and sharing that we could always refer back to. Additionally, we thought that others might benefit as well.

However, we never imagined that http://www.lucidpractice.com would be having such a positive impact on so many readers in such a short period of time.

We’re grateful and have enjoyed sharing our thoughts and hearing from readers to create connections and foster conversations that matter.

Q: How can yoga make the world a better place?

A: In Sanskrit, the word “yoga” means “to yoke.” Yoga is a process of self enquiry. Yoga is a process of yoking our body, mind, and breath. With consistent practice, we feel more connected to ourselves, to those around us, and to God and/or the universe.
In this sense, yoga can yoke people together. We feel that if people are at peace with themselves and truly aware of their actions, they will be selfless and their actions will not be contingent upon their own ego.
Yoga is a method of purifying one’s self. Unskillful thoughts and actions that have become patterns in life can be brought to attention and reflected upon. The Tao Te Ching eloquently notes, “In the pursuit of learning, something is acquired every day. In the pursuit of the Tao, every day something is relinquished.” By becoming our best selves through yoga, we can all live at peace together and let the world take its natural course.
Q: You make videos of your travel destination; what makes your videos unique?

A: Many of our readers are backpackers and international travelers. We feature travel videos that we think will have a positive impact on our readers. One of our blog contributors, Danielle, has studied film. She’s so talented in an array of artistic mediums and we enjoy sharing her work with our readers.

Also, we’ve recently been uploading clips on YouTube that viewers can’t find anywhere else. We like to blend yoga with music and the early results of this have been decidedly positive.

Q: What kind of training have you had?

A: We participated in an Ashtanga yoga retreat in Koh Phangan, Thailand with our teacher (who we’re still very much connected to) Rory Trollen. During this retreat, our concept of life as we knew it was forever changed. We do not profess to be experts by any means. We are students first and foremost.

We’re not so sure about (well, we’re not so sure about anything) the Western approach of “200 Hour Teaching Training Courses” which can essentially be crash courses designed to make a quick buck for the yoga studio owner. We feel the real training comes from your own consistent, daily practice. We feel the best training is consistent, daily practice and we mean six days a week for several years consecutively.

Who is more qualified to teach: the 200 hour certified yoga teacher who just found yoga 4 months ago or the “uncertified” practitioner who has studied and practiced yoga daily for twenty years?

Q: You both have backgrounds in football, is the football culture accepting of the teachings of yoga?

A: Ten years ago the answer to the question would be drastically different to what it is now. Yoga has become widely accepted. In the Western culture and especially in American football culture, men tend to have a “tough guy” mentality (we know because that was us!) and yoga was seen as contrary to that. This cultural norm has been flipped upside down as more and more NFL players have expressed their gratitude for the practice.

The best athletes in the world practice yoga regularly: Lebron James, Calvin Johnson, Ray Lewis, etc.

Q: How did yoga help improve your game?

A: We both began practicing yoga to become more dynamic athletes. We became more balanced, more flexible, and less prone to injury. We didn’t realize it at the time but now know that mental aspect of yoga can be even more beneficial than the physical.

Overall, we both agree that yoga helped us bring our game to the next level. The proof is in the results: We both helped lead our respective teams to conference championships while being awarded individual accolades that otherwise may not have been possible.

Q: What are the different types of yoga?

A: Yoga is a form of meditation for cleansing the mind, gaining spiritual consciousness, and forming a connection with the One of life. The Bhagavad Gita is one of the core texts of yoga. The Gita is eighteen chapters long and it’s said that in each chapter a different type of yoga is discussed.

While reading the Gita I didn’t necessarily notice eighteen types. I recognized four main branches of the practice: Karma yoga, Bhakti yoga, Raja yoga, and Jnana yoga. In basic terms karma yoga is the yoga of action, bhakti yoga is the yoga of devotion, Raja yoga is the practice of meditation, and Jnana yoga is the yoga of knowledge into practice.

Hatha yoga is the practice we see many people in the West practicing today. It is a form of Raja yoga. Many people associate Hatha yoga or Ashtanga yoga (a type of Hatha practice) with the well-known eight limbs of yoga. One limb of this practice is the physical asana or postures. This meditational practice is changing the world.

Q: How do you decide where to travel next?

A: We usually pick a starting place and have a defined but entirely open and flexible plan. At one point, we were about to book a flight from Beijing, China to Mumbai, India but at the last minute opted to fly to Bangkok, Thailand. One of our favorite aspects of travel is being spontaneous and disregarding cultural norms that most people are used to.

We prefer long duration trips and tend to stay in one location for at least a couple of weeks in order to get immersed in the local culture.

We’re passionate learners, meeting new people and learning about other cultures has taught us that there’s so much more to life than going to a great college, getting a great job, getting married, having kids and settling down. Many Westerners get distracted by “the rat race,” celebrity gossip, slavishly following sports teams, or other activities that to us seem trivial compared to seeing the world and having a positive impact on people.

Q: If a football player scored a touchdown and no one saw it would it score six points?

A: That’s a tough question! Yes he would, we think? Would he celebrate and showboat? That’s a discussion for another day.

Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)

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