Session 8 transcript now available

In this session, Gail Parker, PhD, a clinical psychotherapist and certified yoga therapist, shares her expertise in integrating psychology and yoga therapy, particularly within diverse communities. Neuroscientist Gabriela Torres-Platas, PhD, contributes her groundbreaking research on Tibetan Dream Yoga. Both practices of restorative yoga and Tibetan Dream Yoga may seem divergent in their immediate goals—restoration and relaxation versus spiritual insight and awakening. However, they share a common thread in emphasizing mindfulness, awareness, and the integration of mind and body. Both practices encourage a deep connection to the present moment and a cultivation of inner peace, albeit through different pathways.

This session will delve into the vision of rest as sociopolitically generative, challenging the notion that rest is passive and exploring how restful states connect us to our ancestors and a more connected way of being. Participants will explore how practices like intention setting, daydreaming, and spending time in nature are indicative of a restful way of being that contrasts with the prevailing culture of pushing harder and doing moreParticipants will gain valuable insights into differences between rest, deep relaxation, Tibetan Dream Yoga, and actual sleep, shedding light on the vulnerability and sacredness of restful states.

Gail Parker is a psychologist, yoga therapist educator, Past President of Black Yoga Teachers Alliance Board of Directors, and the author of Restorative Yoga for Ethnic and Race-Based Stress and Trauma, and Transforming Ethnic and Race-Based Traumatic Stress With Yoga. She teaches in the mental health module of the Kripalu School of Integrative Yoga Therapy.
Find out more about her here.

Gabriela Torres-Platas holds a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from McGill University where she studied the implication of glial cells and their inflammatory contribution to suicide. She pursued clinical research training and Co-led a laboratory where she assessed the biological mechanisms of Mindfulness-Based Interventions as a treatment for psychiatric disorders. Her current research focus is to understand the neural correlates and psychological mechanisms of contemplative sleep practices, particularly, Tibetan Dream Yoga and its potential benefits for mental health.
Find out more about her here.