North Pole Journey: Day Four, Part Four

Day Four: Sunday September 26, 2010
Part Four
FROZEN MUSIC VIDEO SHOOT
In the wind and -25C weather at the North Pole, Rishi unveils our video camera from beneath its own miniature “snow jacket”, while Sunanda sets up the tripod for the shoot. I take out my props, walk quickly through my routine now on snow, consider my performance flow, and check the lighting. The sun is fading fast but it will have to do.
Rishi starts shooting immediately. There is no time to lose. The two pilots told us that we can be on this huge sheet of ice for no more than three hours if we are going to make it back with enough gas and avoid any turns in the unpredictable Arctic weather. That is fine. In this polar cold, batteries don’t last long.
Dressed in my gold Natamba costume from head to toe, I position myself on the snowy ice to start my first song of four, when I realize I cannot move my hands. The deep cold has already frozen the acrylic paint on my costume gloves. This means I cannot press “play” on the backing tracks on my iPod, which is attached to me, buried inside my jacket and snuggled in with an additional hot pocket for warmth and battery life. Our boom box (plan A) having been lost on our various flights from Toronto to here, we start this shoot already working our plan B. Rishi’s iPod and earbuds are tucked into my costume and is the source of sound for my performance.
Since I am unable to start the music, Sunanda steps forward to help. But we quickly realize a problem: when Sunanda pushes the iPod start button for me, she partially undresses me, then zips me up, during which time I need to start singing. The first song comes in right off the top. Sunanda is now in the shot.
Thinking only of speed of execution, we pull the iPod from inside my snowsuit and clip it on my belt outside my gold costume, then frame the shot as a close up, so that Sunanda can push the button and quickly leave the set. It’s a plan! Away we go!
My face is now tight and numb, and icicles are forming on the strands of hair that escape from my hood. It does not even occur to me that it may be hard to sing in this dry, freezing weather. I start to sing. Rishi shoots. All is going well until about one minute into the song. The sound completely dies on my headset. In the extreme cold, the batteries have already run out. 
We quickly move to plan C. We will use the iPad. But then we realize that the iPad is back at the plane, a good 30 minute walk from where we are standing. But if we are to shoot at all, we have no choice but this.
Rishi captures footage of the surroundings and I review my performance in this setting, while Sunanda runs back to the plane as quickly as she can in the thick, crunchy snow over the frozen ocean.
Shortly after Sunanda leaves, Rishi looks at me with terror, his face rigid in the harsh cold. When we first landed, Rishi found that he was not able to operate the camera properly with his gloves on, so he took them off. Now, his hands, in such a short time, are literally beginning to freeze. He tells me he cannot feel them. I place his gloves back on his hands and rub them briskly to warm them up. He begins to feel like his hands are on fire, signs of early hypothermia.
Sunanda returns. Without a moment to lose, she zips open my snowsuit, pulls out the iPad from her coat, stuffs it inside my costume and pushes the headphones into my ears. Again, we face the same problem with her being in the shoot, but we see that we have no other choice.            
With all these delays and technical difficulties, we now only have twenty minutes to go through all four songs, which means one take per song. I drop any possible thoughts of disappointment that may be creeping into my mind and focus exclusively on my performance. This is what I have come here to do. This is as it is. No amount of grief will change it. I am focused on nailing each track.
We shoot all four songs straight through. Just as the last song comes to an end, the battery of the iPad also dies. I see this as Grace. We actually did it. I am comforted knowing that we are running two cameras so there will be some options in the editing. This footage will suffice to show my performance in the North Pole, where we have come to help raise awareness of the melting polar ice. This is already a success.
We quickly pack up our video and performance gear and walk back to the plane to collect our tent, find a spot to pitch it and begin the two hours of healing work we have come to offer our Mother – the planet Earth.


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I AM so looking forward to buying the video of this performance! I think it must be very powerful! xox

Hard, it was hard. Pain, no battery, and the mind making everything difficult. Indeed the only way was to keep the focus.

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WHY YOGA IN THE NIGHTCLUB

I am often asked what inspired me to bring yogic expression into the club scene. I answer easily. Yoga In the Nightclub is a natural expression of who I am as a musical artist and dedicated yogini. Yoga is not a physical practice but a way of life. It is about learning to be present in all one does, to see the divine here, now, in this moment. As such, yoga is everywhere. It is about feeling connected to something much greater than our limited ego or will. It is about being in service to life, feeling interconnected to that very life force. Yoga In The Nightclub is a celebration of life and a reminder that we can find awakened presence everywhere.

Yoga in the West is mostly known as a series of bendy physical exercises. Yet there is much more to it than fitness. Yoga’s systematic breath and body exercises, designed to clear the subtle channels in our energy system, prepare us for meditation, through which we may experience a life inspired by our interconnected, multidimensional true nature. Our body, that once was seen as “mine”, is no longer our identity, but a gift on loan from the divine. We care for it, but we are not attached to it. The practice of yoga offers us the opportunity to experience the transmutation of matter into pure light, embody the multidimensional and rest in the eternal.

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WE ARE ALL CONNECTED

Hatha yoga, the physical practice of yoga, is just one of many aspects of yoga, which range from selfless service to astrology and prayer. The Sanskrit word “yoga” most simply translates to “union”, implying that the practice of any yoga will bring together our perceived sense of separateness. As a whole, yoga is an ancient science of life. It is a practical method of shedding excess and bringing us back from the self-delusion of separation from the divine so that we may realize our inherent interconnection to and ultimate oneness with it.

As we begin to understand that yoga is everywhere, we come to see how we are all connected in vast ways far beyond the limitations of our personal will and ego. What I do affects you, and vice versa. We are one earth family. At the heart of it all, we share the same heartbeat. Breathe to be. We are one.

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AWAKENED LIVING

When we are open, life blossoms, just as a flower opens to welcome the morning sun.  We see that the sun, though it is millions of light years away, has a tender yet powerful relationship with the flower, as do the rain and the clouds. From this perspective we see that we are part of the whole. Life is a symphonic masterpiece with which, when we are open, we are completely resonant.

As we come to understand our oneness, we can revel in it with wonder and joy. We can consider in awe how immense it all is. We can let go of the idea that an illusory, isolated sense of self could possibly be in control, and open to an exquisite unfolding of life in absolute perfection. Our actions become not about “me” but about the whole. Each moment is integrated within the whole. No one decision is separate.

When we begin to see that each decision we make affects not just ourselves but everyone and everything on the planet, we act with more compassion. When we have more compassion, we realize the impact of our actions and we naturally want less and practice more kindness. As stewards of the Earth, we each are called to learn to live in harmony with ourselves, each other and our planet. We all breathe the same air and live on the same living organism, our planet. Varied in race and creed, we are all one family, children of the same mother, the planet Earth.

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THE OPPORTUNITY FOR GRACE

In each moment, there is infinite grace. By becoming more conscious as we practice yoga on the mat, at work, at play or in the nightclub, we let go of the unnecessary and develop greater internal spaciousness which blooms throughout our lives. In this space new life and possibilities arise.

As we rest our awareness on the simple purity and grace of the breath, we realize - we are alive! We let go of wanting things from the future and the past and open to what is here and now. We feel as vast as the sky and rooted in the richness of this moment.

When we “breathe to be”, we understand our interconnection. We see that we are not the doers but a part of the whole, the same energy that is in the flowers and in the stars. We know that our essence is divine - from which we have come, to which we return.

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PARVATI'S NEW SINGLE - MARCH 2016
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I AM LIGHT

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SHARE YOUR YOGA
I am light!

Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
Gone, gone beyond. Oh what awakening!
Gone, gone beyond. Swaha!

I am light, dancing in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!
I am light, in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!

Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
I am the light, liquid gold light
I am in delight! Swaha!

I am light, dancing in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!
I am light, in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!

I am the light (gate gate), liquid gold light (paragate)
I am in delight (gate gate) transforming the night (paragate)

Gone, gone beyond (gate gate)! Oh what awakening! (paragate) (I am)
Gone, gone beyond (gate gate)! Swaha!

I am light, dancing in delight
I am light, dancing through the night
I am light, in delight
I am light, dancing through the night

I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light (gate gate)
I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light (paragate)
I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light

I am light!

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