As the creator of Forrest Yoga, Ana T. Forrest has been transforming people's lives throughout the world for more than 35 years. Her unique blend of physical practice, Eastern wisdom, and profound Native American ceremony takes her teachings literally off the mat and into daily life - to heal everything from addictive behaviors and eating disorders to chronic pain and injury. In Fierce Medicine, Forrest tells her own story of healing from the scars of abuse and physical handicaps, and reveals the proven practices that enabled her to move beyond her past into a life committed to helping others reconnect with their bodies, cultivate balance, and start living in harmony with their Spirits.
In her unique, powerful, and inviting voice, Ana Forrest reveals how to:
Whether you've never done yoga or are a seasoned practitioner, Ana Forrest's practices, stories, and exercises will help you uncover your own warrior's heart. With this wise woman as your trusted guide, you, too, can become centered, strong, and more alive than ever before.
©2011 Ana T. Forrest (P)2013 Harper Collins Publishers
It is important to note that this book is basically an autobiography. If you come to it looking for information on how to integrate yoga, Eastern wisdom, and profound Native American ceremony, you will be disappointed. By perhaps a quarter of the way into the book or more, the only mention of using Native American ceremony was that of sitting in a circle and passing a "truth stick" around. As it turns out, any information about Native Americans was basically that Ana lived with a tribe for a while and was taken under the wing of a medicine man.
There isn't anything terribly wrong with this book being an autobiography. Neither sacred ceremony nor physical yoga translates well to books (and especially to audiobooks), anyway. But for those actually interested in this topic and are looking for a "how to," I would save your money on this book and buy: "Sacred Ceremony: How to Create Ceremonies for Healing, Transitions, and Celebrations," by Steven Farmer. If you are interested in yoga and Eastern wisdom, I would highly recommend: "The Lost Teachings of Yoga," by Georg Feuerstein or "A Life Worth Breathing," by Max Strom.
As an autobiography, this is a page turner in a similar sense to how driving by an auto accident on the interstate is a head turner. I'm not saying it isn't interesting because it is. However, never, and I mean never, have I been so thankful for having a "normal," boring and uneventful life as when I finished this book. I actually wasn't even in this state after finishing Katherine Boo's, "Behind The Beautiful Forevers."
Fair warning should also be given here, too. The audiobook is certainly not something that can be listened to with children around because of language, sexual situations, and drug and alcohol use. Ana also, as mentioned by other reviewers, totally throws out sacred teachings on nonviolence.
The book's saving grace was the rather interesting time that Ana spent in India, as well as butting heads with the late B.K.S. Iyengar while there. If it had not been for this section of the book, there really wouldn't have been much left to recommend. However, this was interesting and well worth hanging in there for.
The bottom line is, the book is a weird, mixed bag with just enough interesting tidbits to keep the pages turning...but turn they did, so there is certainly some merit to the book
Amazingly well told story, with lots of helpful transformational tools.
Her life story is fascinating, and the story is well told and incorporates the tools to transform your own life really well.
She is a very accomplished storyteller. The way she narrates is like you are there with her.
Fierce Medicine is a diamond filled with Brilliant reflections, sacred teachings and unforgettable experiences. Ana T. Forrest, Rockstar yogi, healer, and Medicine Woman, reads her story with Beauty and Eloquence. In her earlier career, she was a world class horse trainer. Her strategic perspective seemed to be a philosophy used in show jumping. When approaching a challenging obstacle, one proceeds in a manner known as "throw your heart over". With this work, she takes that leap and soars amongst supernovas.
Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson is similar because both Ana and Steve are ahead of their time in their respective fields. They both "think different." Their challenges evolve into opportunities rather than obstacles. They reject what did not work and moved into new, uncharted waters for what did. Basically, they are both pioneers in their fields.
There are many scenes that resonate. Ana's time in India, which was a crucial turning point for her personally and professionally, explains the roots of her teaching philosophy.
Her work and relationship with horses was very informative as well. The connected nature of life and love and trust was very well delineated.
There are many poignant moments. How Ana got up each day and continued to learn, grow, and later to teach is inspiring and touching. I salute and admire her work and her lessons.
Listening to Ana's reading is a blessing. Breathe deeply as you drink it in. Listen in Beauty to the life and work of a leader and a living legend.
Once you finish the book it feels like parting with your new best friend.
Even if you're not that much into yoga it teaches you the body's way of remembering bad experiences and how to resolve them. It's just as much healing for the soul as the body.
Greater than expected
Amazing book both inspirational and life changing. I continue to re read it and each time I take something from it that I can apply in my life to live in more beauty. It's helped me be a better yoga teacher and enjoy my practice on a deeper level. Beautifully narrated.
Thank you Ama Forrest
Some of us are given big burdens to carry when we are children. Ana forged a path through healing, honesty, power, and success, and shared her map with us. This book moved me to tears (well sobs actually) and I'm happy I read it. I love listening to her read her autobiography because words are flat on a page and her true ferocity and vivaciousness comes through her voice. She is animated and honest in her tone and I found listening to her speak her truth very healing. I plan to study with Ana as soon as she comes back to Seattle. Keep on mending the hoop of the people Ana. We need you.
Fierce Medicine is truly a book for people that feel deep pain, or have felt deep pain in their lives and want to recover from it. There are very useful tools given, such as the death meditation, and how to use your physical yoga practice to heal emotional wounding. I have felt alone with my childhood pain because most people I know haven't been through major childhood trauma. Listening to Ana read her story, which is more horrific than mine, has been the only thing that has opened the black box recorder portion of my own memory and made me really want to review it. Repressing the story of what happened to me has made me numb-out and flip-out at weird times in my life. I've never heard this behavior described in the first person before by an author or anyone else, and it was powerful for me to hear how she moves through it. If you feel alone and burdened by your hidden pain, listen to this incredible book because it will help you to feel less alone and inspire you to take the steps to heal yourself.
This book is a pure gift. I have so much gratitude for Ana.
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