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IAN MORRIS

Ian Morris, Founder

Multi-instrumentalist, Poet,
Artist, and Intuitive Healer

I began my personal journey with the wellness and healing potentials of sound and specific frequencies while working with a nonprofit organization I had established, Homemade Genius, in 2004. I was working with underserved children using music as a tool for promoting creativity and connection. Through those experiences, I began to really notice the improvements in overall attention, engagement, confidence and even academic performance with the kids.

Over the next several years, I expanded into other ventures which provided me with additional opportunities to work with children, including those with special needs. It was then that I began to even further observe and experience the power of music and sound as a tool to deeply connect and facilitate engagement; the healing potentials in a very generalized and therapeutic sense. It triggered my interested in this aspect of music and sound.

In 2011, I became very ill. The symptoms I was experiencing were severe and puzzled the medical community. After 4 emergency room visits and multiple specialists, nobody was sure of a definitive diagnosis. Everything from cancer to Multiple Scleroses was suggested. This was one of the most devastating times of my life and triggered a mental, emotional, and spiritual crisis within me. One result of this, opened a willingness to consider alternative means for creating the personal health and ultimately, the life that I wanted for myself.

As a multi-instrumentalist, I instinctively sought solace in music. It was during this time of very poor health that I came across information about the sacred healing potentials of sound/vibration and began to study further. What I can then best describe as a combination of divine inspiration, timing, and skill set all merged. I began creating and producing compositions of tones and frequencies which lead me to personally reclaim my health. In addition to this personal physical healing, I was simultaneously embarking on a spiritual journey.

I have come to believe that the opportunities for healing and wellness when working with sound is enormous and holds even greater potential to be further amplified by creating a larger grid of connection, which is what occurs at a Sonic Meditation.

Ian@listeningtosmile.com

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BRYAN KEST

Born in 1964, Bryan Kest has been practicing yoga since 1979, starting when he was 14 years old.

Aloha, I am Bryan Kest, owner of Santa Monica Power Yoga & Meditation and poweryoga.com, located in Santa Monica, CA. I am 53 years old and I was born in Cleveland, OH and raised in the suburbs of Detroit, MI. I was very fortunate to move to Hawaii at the age of 14. It was in Hawaii that I was even more fortunate to meet David Williams at David’s and Brad Ramsey’s class. David was the first person to bring Ashtanga Yoga to the world outside of India. Brad became an incredibly influential example of how to be a man and a yogi.

I first started leading yoga classes at age 20 when I was invited by a clinic who specialized in eating disorders to share my practice with their clients. The clinic, called Esteem Clinic(in Santa Monica), was so happy with the results that they offered me more clients, and a yoga career was born.

At the age of 24, I entered my first ten-day Goenka Vipassana meditation course, after returning from living in India, where I studied with K. Patthabi Jois, before it was a trendy thing to go to India and study yoga. When I was there, it was just me, my traveling mate, and Patthabi Jois, all by ourselves. Upon my return, I enrolled in the Goenka course; being informed through meditation, my Ashtanga yoga practice began morphing from its generic sequence into something more personal. In a lot of ways, this is what Power Yoga is: freedom and discovery! This is what I meant when I coined the term Power Yoga.

I was very much inspired by Goenka. The practice he shared is profound and his delivery is equally profound. For me, his donation model touched me deeply and said to me so much more than simply “give what you can give.” I immediately thought, why can’t I run a yoga studio in the same way? Welcome to Santa Monica Power Yoga & Meditation. We have been a donation-based studio for decades here at my Santa Monica studio ever since.

My Santa Monica studio is unique, not only in our donation concept. Our studio was created to give yoga instructors a space to share their practice without the need to conform to a studio lineage. Instructors simply rent time slots, while keeping all donations. Within these time slots, the space is theirs. This has created an eclectic group of instructors who seem to carry a similar torch.

My yoga classes online or in my studio are truly a multi-dynamic experience–a confluence of movements combining a balanced sequence with all elements of physical exercise, mindfulness, moderation and meditation. All of these are within a supportive dialogue developed to empower the practitioner. The distinct objective is strengthening the benevolent and eradicating the malevolent.

MANY more Groovey people are being added to this list!!! Stay Tuned