Something Different for Valentine's Day!

Can we truly love others if we don't first love ourselves? Self-love and development of self are life-long processes, and we need help! The Mud & The Lotus: A Workbook and Guide for Students of Yoga by Courtney Denise Butler is a ready resource that can help you prime many areas of your life, whether or not you are taking a step toward teacher training or simply want to deepen your practice. Teacher training costs thousands, but Butler packs life-changing knowledge into a book that costs only about $35. 

Order The Mud & The Lotus before Valentine’s Day and get a jumbo sample class card ($6) free. 

You’ll discover perspective-changing reading, such as a look at the 8 limbs of yoga and how they apply to your life. Fitting as we enter Valentine season, is considering the Yama (Limb 1) of Aparigraha, or Non-Attachment:

Some attachments are necessary, of course, as we are attached to our own family members and those we love. We need certain things in our lives like food, clothing, and shelter. However, do we place an emphasis on having things a certain way or do we know we are important and worthy without ‘things’? ... that we can go on in spite of loss? ... these are great questions to ask oneself: Am I doing this because of my fear of unworthiness? Do I feel I need to be a certain type of person to receive love? If I didn’t have this or that (clothes, car, man or woman, status, etc.), would I feel whole?” ~Courtney Denise Butler


 

My furry Valentine, sweet fuzzy Valentine . . . Order Home Sweet Home:  Arkansas Rescue Dogs & Their Stories by Grace Vest through Friday 2/9 and it will be mailed or hand-delivered with a handmade Valentine like those shown here, featuring one of the rescues from the book captured by photographer Whitney Bower. Also, $1 of every purchase through Friday will be donated to Rock City Rescue. Now that’s puppy love! 

Mud & Lotus Author Offers Advice on Choosing Yoga School

Considering getting your yoga teaching credentials but not sure which yoga school would be best for you, how much to spend, or whether you even need to attend school at all (versus a yoga workshop or retreat)? There are many factors to consider and author of The Mud & The Lotus: A Guide and Workbook from Students of Yoga, Courtney Denise Butler, offers guidance in this video. 

What yoga school is right for you? Advice from veteran yogini, Courtney Denise Butler. 

Interview with Courtney Denise Butler: PART I

Courtney Butler_Head Shot.jpg

 

 

 

Enjoy PART 1 of a two-part interview with The Mud & The Lotus: A Workbook and Guide for Students of Yoga author Courtney Denise Butler

 


What is your favorite pose? 

I can't say that I have a favorite simply because I look at postures as healing and balancing for whatever is going on in my life. Therefore, postures are more prescriptive in nature, and I appreciate the balancing power in all of them. 

What is your favorite place to meditate? 

Wherever I am. At home, I have a bonus room with a meditation cushion, and in the nearby window I have some meaningful items that make me feel peaceful. I often sit facing this window with its lovely view and meditate there with my little tokens of love and beauty to focus my energy and attention on all that is beautiful in the world. It’s so easy to be taken with all that is painful in this world, it's important to have a place to go to that consciously reminds us of love. 

Would you share a mantra that soothes you? 

MAy all beings be happy and free.jpg

What sorts of challenges did you encounter in writing The Mud & The Lotus? 

I am very self-disciplined and motivated when I feel passionate, so motivation to write came easily. Being interrupted was a challenge because I had four teenagers living at home when I wrote the book, and four animals in the house. Another challenge was living on my savings and working only part time. I saved for a year to be able to work part time in order to have time to write the book, then I scheduled days and blocks of time simply for writing. In totality, the book took two and a half years from beginning to completion. 

Once it was complete, my challenge was reading and rereading it over and over again, always wanting to make changes. I suffer from a learning disability that causes me not to see mistakes very easily—my mind reads the word as I think it is on the page and not as it may actually be. I’ve never been diagnosed, but others in my immediate family have dyslexia and dyspraxia and I’ve experienced symptoms that align with those diagnoses. It helps to put text in various fonts and color backgrounds, and to print out the work several times so I catch things. I also am fortunate to have had wonderful proof readers and a great editor to assist me with these challenges. 

Especially if you have a learning disability, but really no matter what, it’s scary to put yourself out there in print, online, and in person. I try to remember that it’s okay (and human!) to make mistakes. For every person that may find something to criticize, it is important to remember there are many more that we are hopefully helping—even (maybe especially?) by sharing our flaws and admitting our vulnerabilities.

What are the parts or pages of your book that you look at and think, "Heck yeah!" 

I am so grateful for the cover art. It makes me happy every time I see it. When I read the blurbs by people who mean so much to me it makes my heart so full that people have been so benevolent to me and my work.  Really the fact that this book was a team effort with proof readers, friends who helped, the editor and publisher, the graphic designer, the photographer. The hand-drawn illustrations make it really special . . . it was my concept, but the team that worked with me to bring the concept to completion. Well that makes my heart overflow with gratitude because they took my ideas and made them even better. 

There are many I could give, but a specific example is the way the layout designer, Amy Ashford, and editor, Erin Wood, took my cautionary notes, personal stories, and teaching tips, and organized them, integrating them into the layout so that they have their own graphics and are easily identifiable throughout. I hope these sorts of details will make the text a really useful resource for readers. 

You make a lot of yoga being a lifestyle (versus a workout or a religion), and about it being for everyone. What do you mean?

The word yoga means to "yoke" or "bind" together. It can mean joining the mind to the body through practice (breathing, asana, meditation, or our actions in the world), and/or joining yourself with nature or the God of your understanding, and being connected to the greater world beyond our own little world. 

Doing postures (“asana”) is simply one way of making this connection. Postures can help to balance the body; However, postures are not the only way. When you conserve resources you are doing yoga, when you pray for others you are doing yoga, when you help someone without expecting anything in return that is also yoga. Living yoga as a lifestyle likely means your days are filled with your actions and behaviors aligning with the principals of connecting to your inner self, the God of your understanding, or to something bigger than yourself, and connecting your actions to your love for others. It also means when the “little you” takes over—the Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired, Greedy you—that humanness we all share provides us with the tools to get back on track. When we become conscious about these natural human tendencies, we can recognize them for what they are and return to a balanced state. Yoga provides us with countless possibilities in many forms (breathing exercises, postures, meditation, service work, and on and on) for balancing out the inevitable imbalances in our lives.  

 

Stay tuned for PART 2 of this interview with Courtney Denise Butler, in which we’ll talk about perceptions of her as a yoga practitioner in her small hometown decades before yoga became a household word, what all those crazy letters after her name mean, and what it was like to be among a handful of yoga therapists worldwide to do beta testing for the new standards of the International Association of Yoga Therapists.  

Mud & Lotus Now Available for Purchase

The Mud & The Lotus: A Guide and Workbook for Students of Yoga is now on sale for $39.95 plus free domestic shipping. Order by September 22 to get your signed copy by mail, and stay tuned for details about the Hot Springs, AR, book launch in October. 

Pictured below, 7 cartons weighing 158 lbs. of Mud & Lotus excitement arrive on Et Alia's doorstep, and author Courtney Butler displays the cover as she takes copies to be signed. 

Thank you to nearly 50 customers for pre-ordering your books, which will be shipped or available for pick up at Balance Yoga and Wellness on September 15, 2017. 

PRE-ORDER The Mud & The Lotus!

In celebration of International Yoga Day, THE MUD & THE LOTUS is now available for pre-order on our website! Buy early, receive a discount, and by mid-September you'll have access to the advice of veteran yogini and business woman Courtney Denise Butler.

Want to learn more about Courtney's credentials, which include earning every credential available from Yoga Alliance? Visit her author page to learn more. We proudly welcome this talented author to our Et Alia family of authors. 

The Mud & The Lotus: A Guide and Workbook for Students of Yoga
29.95

 

About

Rooted in the understanding that yoga teachers are themselves lifelong students of yoga, The Mud & The Lotus: A Guide and Workbook for Students of Yoga offers opportunities for aspiring teachers and new students alike to grow in their practice. Guided by hatha yoga traditions, Courtney Denise Butler presents the curriculum she uses to train student-teachers at her Balance Yoga and Wellness Yoga School (R.Y.S. 200/300/500, with a 4.85/5-star Yoga Alliance rating). From the grit to the zen of the yoga world, Butler has developed these lessons from extensive experience in many aspects of the yoga business as well as four decades of personal practice. She shares basic history, physical and energetic anatomy, teaching tips and pose adjustments, essential cautionary notes, detailed professional and business advice, useful approaches for class planning, demonstrative images and illustrations, inspirational personal anecdotes, and much more. The volume includes a workbook that actively reinforces key terms and concepts, and lights the way for self-reflection that will continue to inform teachers as they lead from and beyond their mats.

PRAISE

Read list of five-star reviews

“A comprehensive and unique guide to the basics of yoga for students and teachers. Highly recommended!” —Larry Payne, PhD, C-IAYT, E-RYT500. Founding Director, Yoga Therapy Rx® and Prime of Life Yoga®. Co-author, Yoga for Dummies, Yoga Rx, and Yoga Therapy & Integrative Medicine.

 

“A wonderfully practical—and inspiring—foundations book based upon Butler’s years of caring experience in the real world. Her chapter ‘Yoga Business Basics’ will be especially valuable to many, with much pragmatic education not readily found elsewhere. Highly recommended for the beginning or aspiring yoga teacher.” —John Kepner, MA, MBA, C-IAYT. Executive Director, International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT).

 

“I highly recommend The Mud & The Lotus to anyone currently teaching yoga, or thinking of entering this highly rewarding field. Butler provides teachers—new and experienced—one guide that can support them throughout their careers. . . . taking into account all aspects of being a teacher. Personal stories lend an authentic and warm vibe, so it really feels like Butler is right there with you, supporting you as you develop.” —Karen Fabian, MS, E-RYT. Founder, Bare Bones Yoga. Author, Stretched and Structure and Spirit.

Cover illustration: Lotus from the Mud by David McBurney davidmcburney.com.au 

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