How Can We All Win?


Regardless of how you felt about Saturday’s election results, can you remember how the other half of America feels?  In a stunning performance, the fearless and sometimes off-the-rails comedian Dave Chappelle posed this question in his brilliant and edgy monologue on Saturday Night Live.


Chappelle leads by remembering his great-grandfather who was born into slavery in South Carolina. He was freed at age 10 and dedicated his life to three essentials: education, the freedom of Black people, and Jesus Christ. He ended up being the president of Allen University, one of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as well as the 37th Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. (Another HBCU grad, Kamala Harris, is our Vice President-Elect!)


In his routine, Chappelle doesn’t entertain, he challenges. You can feel the discomfort in the studio audience, which probably leans left and wanted a big feel-good monologue about the Democratic win. Instead, they got provoked and called to their edge.


Chappelle likened President Donald Trump contracting COVID-19 and receiving state-of-the-art treatment to taking a bag of hamburgers into a homeless shelter and eating them in front of the homeless while saying that hunger shouldn’t dictate their life. Chappelle highlighted the pain and anguish for White Americans whose life expectancy for the first time has been on the downturn in recent years fueled by “deaths of despair” from drug overdoses, alcoholism, liver disease, and suicides.  Chappelle asked us to consider the pain and anguish in the White community over these deaths and the feeling that nobody cares. He also asks us to feel what police officers feel putting on their uniforms: “that they have a target on their backs.” 


The key moment is when Chappelle says he knows this anguish of being a target and of feeling no one cares, and he hates the FEELING, but that he doesn’t hate ANYONE. This is a radical and critical distinction. In our world, we currently face fearsome challenges: the unraveling of our ecosystem as it tries to support an expanding population; rapid-fire changes in technology and the expansion of Artificial Intelligence (AI); growing economic disparities with our unequal playing field and more. But if we insist on focusing our trauma onto others instead of working within ourselves to create Ahisma (nonviolence towards ourselves and all beings), we increase our own suffering as well as the suffering of others.


Chappelle can be repugnant, but like all prophets, he is edgy. We talk a lot about “The Edge” in yoga, and mostly it’s been applied to the physical sensations in a pose like a hip opener. But the physical practice is exactly that: practice for sitting with our edge mentally and emotionally. Can we stay on that edge of not knowing – what we call in meditation taking on “Beginner’s Mind” – and be curious and ready to listen to those with opposing views? One tool I’ve been teaching in workshops and that I use in my own life is called Active Love (see more under “Recommended Reading” at end of this email), where you send active love energy from your physical heart space to another person, disengaging from the particulars (you can imagine NOT seeing their face if that helps). It is our love and compassion for all human beings that is critical. We NEED each other. Yoga invites us to awaken from the illusion of separation and be yoked to each other and to all that is throughout time and space.


This heart opening is not about arching our spines; we know we have too much of that in yoga anyway! It’s about offering compassion to ourselves and then to see if we can sit with the difficult emotions that arise when we encounter those who challenge us, but still send them love – or at least a little kindness.


Dave Chappell’s Monologue – You’re Forewarned!


Wishing you peace and, as John Lewis would say, a Little Good Trouble!



Upcoming Online Events


*Free* Restorative Yoga Class

Wednesday, Nov. 11 from 7:30 – 9:00 pm

Email me for the Zoom link which will include a list of props you can gather up around your house for this deeply relaxing practice.


Anatomy Workshop

Front Body – Back Body: Is Your Core Working for Your Back or Vice Versa?

Saturday, Nov. 21 from 12:00 – 3:00 pm

3 CE hours available through Yoga Alliance

Investment: $55

Register through Yoga108 in Akron


Ever have a sore back after a yoga practice? Could you be forcing a pose and possibly recruiting the wrong muscles for the job? This can be a weak core vs. strong back issue or vice versa! Come assess your capacity to both shorten and lengthen your core and back muscles and develop increased strength and avoid injuries related to overuse in the sagittal or front-to-back plane.

Restful Mountain Chair Yoga Teacher Training

Dec. 12 & Dec. 13, 2020 from 9:30am – 12:30 pm & 2:00 – 4:30 pm

January 30, 2021 from 1:00 – 5:00 pm

15 Contact Hours & 5 Non-Contact Hours with Yoga Alliance

Investment: $225

Register with Yoga108 Akron


You don’t have to be a yoga teacher to take Chair Yoga Teacher Training! The Baby Boomers are turning 65 at a rate of 10,000 per day! Chair yoga offers an opportunity for older adults or anyone with limitations to remain physically active and also creates a sangha (community) to maintain meaningful connection with others.


Chair yoga is easy to teach virtually as the only home prop needed is a chair!  When we are gathering again post COVID-19, chair yoga can be taught at senior centers, churches, during lunch hour at businesses, and anywhere where there are people and chairs!

Whatever the situation, Restful Mountain Chair Yoga Teacher Training prepares yoga instructors to teach this style of yoga to our growing aging population.


Topics include:

  • Routines that promote joint freedom, healthy breathing, balance, fascial release, and strength
  • Sequences that invite movement through the joints, standing work that promotes a healthy gait pattern, and reclined movement for students who get down on the floor
  • Research on healthy aging and best practices for working with students 60+ and therapeutic students of all ages
  • Instructions on sharing yogic philosophy with students in a way that is helpful and healing for daily living
  • Information on setting up a chair yoga class, cultivating your clientele, and promoting a sense of compassion and community within the group
  • Leading guided relaxations to help reduce stress and improve wellbeing

The training is structured in two segments so students can complete a case study for learning in between. The workshop provides 15.5 contact hours and 5 non-contact hours of continuing education with Yoga Alliance. 



I am deeply grateful for my students who have bravely made the transition to online classes! I continue with my regular weekly schedule, teaching on Zoom from my home:


Mondays 9:30 – 11:00 am

Functional Movement & Energetic Centering


Tuesdays 9:00 – 10:45 am

Therapeutic Movement & Energetic Centering for Women


Fridays 10:30 am – 12:00 pm

Chair Yoga


Monthly Free Restorative YogaDaytime and Evening Alternating Each Month – email Anne to be put on the list for monthly Zoom link


If you’re interested in attending any of these classes, please email me for the link and payment information.



Props for home include one or two firm blankets (yoga blankets preferred), two blocks, a strap, a folding chair, and Yoga TuneUp® balls for myofascial release, including a pair of small Yoga TuneUp® therapy balls (green balls in the picture in the link below) and a soft, larger Coregeous ball (black or purple ball in the picture). I’ll give suggestions for modifying if you don’t have the props, but they’re highly recommended not only for class but for daily use! 


Here is the link to the site to purchase Yoga TuneUp® Therapy Balls: 


PRIVATE MOVEMENT COACHING & REIKI SESSIONS ON ZOOM WITH ANNEIf you’re accustomed to private, in-person sessions, you may not be aware that through the magic of Zoom, I offer healing practices tailored to you online. I have a limited number of online sessions available. If you’re interested in an online session, email me at for pricing and information.


Christian Mystics: 365 Readings and Meditations by Matthew Fox


This book has genuinely helped me survive this year. It focuses on 32 mystics, including Howard Thurman, whose book Jesus and the Disinherited was in Martin Luther King’s hands each of the 39 times he went to prison.


Animal Teachings: Enhancing Our Lives Through The Wisdom of Animals by Dawn Brunke & Illustrations by Ola Liola


Focusing on the wisdom of our animal teachers, this book groups 60 animals into 12 categories, including Attention & Awareness, Balance, Communication, Creation & Creativity, Dreaming, Healing, Integration, Intuition, Joy, Personal Power, Transformation, & Wisdom. It includes colorful and creative drawings and can be used as the starting point for many meditations.


The Tools: 5 Tools to Help You Find Courage, Creativity and Willpower and Inspire You to Live Life in Forward Motion by Phil Stutz & Barry Michels
This is a groundbreaking book written by a psychologist and a psychiatrist (who suffered a nervous breakdown) on tools that focus on your internal process and help you deal with challenges. It teaches the principal of using active love.


Photo by Christoph Peich on Wunderstock (license)

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