Bio’s of Visiting Teachers
A co-founder of mBODY Yoga a boutique yoga studio in San Luis Obispo, CA. Tawny has been teaching yoga since 2003 and is certified in both kundalini and hatha yoga, with a very personal experience in prenatal yoga. Tawny was featured in Yoga Journal in 2010 and 2011. The gift of yoga keeps giving to her and she enjoys bringing it back to her students full circle. She brings her passion for yoga and her lighthearted presence to all of her classes. Her teaching style is very approachable and accessible to students of all levels. In addition to teaching weekly classes in hatha, prenatal and postnatal, she teaches in LEVITYoga’s 200HR Teacher Training Programs. Tawny holds a monthly Women’s Circle and teaches at an annual Journey To India Retreat. In 2011 and 2012, Tawny was one of a select group of national instructors invited to teach yoga at the White House for Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity initiative.
Tawny’s fascination with birth started with the arrival of her daughter, Athena. Experiencing this unbelievably beautiful transformation sparked deep curiosity and respect for the unique female body and heart. She naturally felt called to be of service in helping women through pregnancy and childbirth in the most conscious and empowering way by supporting the innate wisdom of each woman’s body.
Tawny has been sitting in circle with women for the past 15 years, where women hold sacred space for the unfolding of life and the quiet inner knowing that bond us. Nurturing sisterhood and the ability for women to uplift and uniquely honor one another is something she values and has seen heal countless times.These circles are modern ceremonial gatherings with women that blend yoga, dance, meditation, intention writing, visualization and sisterhood fun into a monthly ritual that connects women more deeply to the rhythms and ways of nature and themselves. Sometimes these circles are taken into nature and span over a weekend or a week, like the Women's Camp Retreats in Big Sur twice a year. Tawny enjoys creating retreats of deep renewal and transformation.
Tawny Day SteriosYoga Teacher, Doula, Mother + Circle Guide 500hr. RYT
As a teacher, my life is to serve and honor students like yourself, who show up curious to learn, and interested in the guidance I offer. I am grateful for what yoga has revealed to me which I share freely, as did the teachers I met on my yogic journey. It is my hope that what you find here will help further your yoga and your life. This site is designed to provide resources I have accumulated over many years – some made available for free to acknowledge your time spent discovering what’s here, and some made available through a small investment on your part, which I hope you will consider as a necessary part of growth, and in alliance with the Universal Law of Exchange, which suggests that giving and receiving are necessary energies in order to create abundance on all levels in our lives.
In sincere gratitude, Peter Sterios
Peter Sterios is an internationally recognized, advanced yoga teacher (ERYT-500) and architect based in San Luis Obispo, California, USA. He is the founder of LEVITYoGA™, MANDUKA™ Yoga Mats, and creator of the popular yoga DVD series “Gravity & Grace” which is one of YOGA JOURNAL’s “top 15 yoga DVD’s of all time”. For three years (2011-2013) Peter taught yoga at the White House for Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity initiatives.
He also co-founded KarmaNICA, a charitable organization for underprivileged children in rural Nicaragua. Peter’s first book “Gravity & Grace: How to Awaken Your Subtle Body with the Healing Power of Yoga“ published by Sounds True launches in Spring 2019.
JAMES g BAILEY
James G Bailey, LAc, Dipl OM, Dipl Ayu, C-AP, E-RYT inspires an awakening to authenticity as the highest expression of faith in oneself on the path of yoga and healing. His teaching are eclectic and entertainingly provocative. He is sought out by yoga schools for his vast knowledge in traditional eastern teachings and modalities and the ability to bridge them to modern day living and individual healing. James is a third generation physician, Ayurveda and Oriental Medicine practitioner, Ayurveda and Yoga educator, and Yoga teacher trainer who has been living Yoga and Ayurveda for 30 years. His training includes 5 years (4000+ hours) of formal clinical studies in Oriental Medicine and training in Ayurveda under such luminary teachers as Dr. Vaijayanti Apte, Dr. Subash Ranade, Dr. Avinash Lele, Dr. Vasant Lad, and many Ayurvedic doctors and therapists in Kerala, south India where he spends time teaching and studying while on retreat. He heads Sevanti Institute and it’s signature Ayurveda Wellness Counselor Program (AWCP), and leads retreats to India each February with his Sevanti Adventures.
From as early as I can remember, I wanted to practice medicine. Along the way I encountered a physician father, a reverent humanist, and a traditional sound healer who would redirect my vision to an naturopathic wisdom of life.
My earliest inspiration was my father, Dr. Byron J. Bailey, a great father, role model, world renowned surgeon, educator and leader in the field of head and neck surgery. He passed on to me the love of medicine, and medical service. In his practice he never turned a patient away, seeing patients for free if they had no means to pay. Even into his 70s, he spends time in Vietnam and Cuba on medical missions to treat patients and teach the doctors of those countries the advanced surgical techniques done here in the US.
In college I discovered the writings of Dr. Albert Schweitzer, who’s ethic “reverence for life” awakened me to the heart practice of humanitarianism, altruism and medical service as a spiritual practice. Schweitzer gave my practice a global vision, and a sense of compassion and altruism. His biography inspired me to travel and to serve as early as my late teens with philanthropic public health projects in rural mountain villages in Guanajuato, Mexico. Since my early twenties, my heroes have been those who sacrificed as they dedicated their lives to eradicating disease and poverty where it was most needed.
In 1985, I finished my studies at the University of Texas at Austin and went back to my birthplace UCLA to study Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Tropical Medicine at the UCLA School of Public Health. My studies took me to Burkina Faso in West Africa were I studied the prevalence of a nutritional (vitamin A deficiency) related blindness (xeropthalmia) that was known to be aggravated by infection by the measles virus. It was the thesis of my maser’s studies that this condition was worsened by the live-attenuated measles vaccine as well. Our research would play a role in proving that well intended measles vaccination campaigns throughout the world were leaving a trail of blindness in vitamin A deficient populations that could be remedied by providing vitamin A supplements with the vaccines.
In 1988, I finished my studies at UCLA and returned to Africa. This time I lived and worked for one year with former President Jimmy Carter’s Global 2000 Project as an epidemiologist on the Guinea Worm Eradication Project in Ghana, West Africa. The guinea worm is a pernicious parasite, acquired from drinking infested pond water, and targeted by the WHO for eradication because it is endemic to agricultural regions of the developing world, having a broader effect upon food production and local economies.
During my time in Ghana, a pivotal experience occurred in my life: I acquired malaria, which was highly endemic to the area where I was living. Our Ghanaian neighbors suffered continuously from malaria. My treatment was attended over by my balafone teacher, a traditional healer from northern Ghana, who used traditional African healing music and a tea made from a small bag of dried, tangled herbs. Among the northern Ghanaian tribes, the musician family lineages were also the healers. Music and medicine were inseparable.
The tea was extraordinarily bitter. A balofon (traditional xylophone) made from dried hollow gourds was played throughout the night next to my body while the effects of the bitter tea took effect. The music pushed me further into a deep healing trance, which along with a delirious fever, I lost consciousness and went into a long deep sleep. When I awoke in the morning the fever was gone, the malaria was gone, and so was my conventional view of medicine and healing.
From Africa, I travelled to India for a year. While there I studied Yoga, Buddhism and meditation, and in the process acquired 5 different species of parasites, all of whom thoroughly enjoyed my enteric environs, and nearly bled me to death. Severely hemorrhaging and losing strength, this time the healing was performed by an Ayurvedic practitioner in Tamil Nadu, South India who used herbs and homeopathy. I was so weak that I have only a vague memory of the actual physician, however, his treatment was successful at stopping the bleeding and I recovered.
Later that year the critters were back while living in Dharamsala in the foothills of the Himalayas in northern India. I visited a 65 year old Tibetan Buddhist monk and practitioner of Tibetan Medicine at the Institute of Tibetan Medicine and Medical Astrology. The monk doctor spoke no English and I spoke no Tibetan. No problem, he read my pulse for 20 minutes with eyes closed and diagnosed me entirely through palpation of the radial artery. The herbal pills didn’t knock out the parasites completely (I didn’t remain under his care long enough to see that happen), but it did stop the bleeding and afforded me the time needed to finally make my way home for more intensive treatments.
All of these experiences further confirmed that medicine and healing is a relative and creative paradigm that in most cultures arises from natural understandings. But I also learned that the best medicine is a collaboration between the old and the new. After two years abroad, my experience with traditional forms of healing peaked new interests in Oriental Medicine and Ayurveda, which have been my life path since. Now 20 years later, I am enjoying a deeper understanding of the “reverence for life” through the lens of the “wisdom of life” teachings and medical practices of Ayurveda.