The “wild yoga” of this book’s title refers to where its practices are best accomplished: outdoors, preferably in wild places. Rebecca Wildbear, who has an M.S. degree in counseling from Johns Hopkins University, has been leading programs in Wild Yoga since 2007. She lives in southwest Colorado.

There is a distinctly ecological framework for this. “Wild Yoga is an embodied practice to help us love ourselves, deepen our relationship with the natural world, and stretch our consciousness,” the author explains. Her book will appeal to people who mourn what is happening to our planet and desire ways to make those feelings real in their bodies and lives.

But that is not all that is “wild” in these yoga practices. There are also the ways that poses, meditations, and intentions are designed to open previously held-tight spaces inside you. Dreams and instincts, for instance, are encouraged to deepen. Wildbear encourages you to rediscover your wildness.

The book is filled with embodied ways of listening to the intelligence of your body, stretching your consciousness, and opening your heart through yoga both familiar and new.

For example, chapter 9, “Embrace Grief and Despair,” encourages you to experience your grief rather than tamp it down and forget it. Six practices are offered in detail, followed by a seventh that is accompanied by a black-and-white illustration for “Hug the Planet Pose.” This has sixteen steps, each carefully crafted and described, followed by several descriptive paragraphs starting with this one:

“Embrace the Earth and feel your love. Imagine gravity as the Earth’s way of loving you. Notice how she pulls you closer. Soak in the nourishment and let the Earth hold you. Imagine lying on the ground close to the humus, humbling yourself. Be present with whatever you feel. Invite your grief and whisper your longings for the world.”

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