Yogi of the Month: Dee Taniñas
WHERE YOU GREW UP: The Philippines
MOVED TO NYC: 2013
NEIGHBORHOOD: Hell’s Kitchen
OCCUPATION: Personal Development Counselor / Life Coach
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN PRACTICING YOGA?
I started doing yoga on and off since 2012. I took some classes when I was in London and Bangkok but I eventually stopped practicing due to my hectic schedule. When I started practicing at Sonic, yoga has become part of my daily routine. It started as a 60-Day dare. Now, I’m on Day 79. And counting!
WHAT DOES YOGA DO FOR YOU?
It gives me space to reconnect with myself. The ultimate goal is to breathe. And be in the moment.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN COMING TO SONIC?
79 days to be exact. Every single day.
WHAT CLASSES DO YOU USUALLY TAKE?
My yoga practice here at Sonic has 3 core elements: The strength of Chris Temple, the flexibility of Jeffrey Duval and the intensity of Keith Partington.
HOBBIES: Exploring New York’s food and wine culture… Chasing pavements… Learning how to dance like a warrior… Thinking about moving to Paris tomorrow
FAVORITE MUSICIAN: Philip Glass
FAVORITE MOVIE: The Hours
FAVORITE BOOK: Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
FAVORITE ARTIST: Salvador Dali
PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE: Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – To choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.
FAVORITE SEASON: Autumn
WHAT DOES PEACE OF MIND MEAN TO YOU?
Knowing that Today is the first day of the rest of my life. Being here now. Breathing.
FAVORITE NEW YORK MEMORY:
I can vividly remember when a group of French tourists asked me for directions and requested to take pictures of me because they believed I’m a real New Yorker who wears black head-to-toe, skinny and stylish… After that fascinating event, I told myself: “I belong here.”
FAVORITE PLACE IN MANHATTAN:
Times Square. I know for most New Yorkers it’s a nightmare. But when you’re there, you see a lot of people coming from all around the world, from various walks of life. There are women wearing burkas from the Middle East, guys in their colorful ethnic suits from Africa, women in their bedazzled saris from India. So for me it’s an interesting place with all of these people coming from different cultures, speaking different languages, doing exactly the same thing- Appreciating the concrete jungle. So everytime I’m there, it’s a constant reminder that as human beings we can come together and set aside our differences.
FAVORITE YOGA POSE:
Natarajasana / Dancer’s Pose. It symbolizes spiritual awakening.
MOST UNFORGETTABLE YOGA MEMORY:
I was almost ready to do my first ever forearm stand. Keith Partington was guiding me through Pincha Mayurasana / Feathered peacock pose when I accidentally kicked his forehead! The pose was a success however I felt so embarrassed and mortified. I apologized after the class and he gave me a hug. 🙂
LIFE LESSON LEARNED FROM YOGA:
Stay in your own yoga mat! Never allow the practice of others distract your focus. When you are doing a headstand and you are too busy looking at other people you can literally break your neck! This is actually a metaphor in life. You need to stay in your own path and never compare yourself to others.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
This might be bleak and depressing to most people but the consciousness of mortality inspires me. My grandmother once told me that in order to know the value of life, you need to understand that it is a brief happening. Everytime I assume the serene posture of a corpse in yoga, I conceive a deep reflection… By solemnly meditating on the inevitability Death, one gains a valuable perspective on the fleeting nature of Life…