When I asked Tarika Lovegarden - author, meditation coach, nutritionist, and all-around badass chick - if I could interview her, I was going to write about her profoundly deep Heart Meditation classes. That is, guided meditation specific to strengthening the energy of the heart chakra: that which relates to love, confidence, compassion, hope and healing for ourselves and others. Also, the chakral ‘bridge’ between wisdom of the body and spirit; it's said that if your heart is strong, so is your intuition. As I approached Tarika after class with an ever-detailed set of questions, it turned out she’d published a book that same week. I guess if you follow your heart, exciting coincidences happen.
Her new book, Meditations on the Fridge: Freedom from Dieting by Maintaining your Weight Mindfully, is about the relationship between our sense of self-worth - energy from the Heart Chakra - and how we treat our bodies. It's the ultimate diet book because not only is it free of un-tasty sounding rules and restrictive schedules, but one can also come away with a stronger sense of self-love that can technically help in all areas of life. Sounds win-win to me. Now, some of us will say, ‘of course I love myself, why do I need to learn about that?’ as we sit at the computer with a kicking hangover, thinking about how we spent more than we should’ve on those new trainers, because we’re just not happy with the way our knee-fat’s been looking lately. In other words, most of us have, at one point or another, fallen into the trap of looking for comfort outside ourselves, including Tarika.
Growing up, Tarika struggled with over-eating and anorexia, and eventually became a nutritionist. Trained in Heart Meditation as soon as she could crawl (her parents are world-renowned HM teachers), it became clear to her that our ideas of self-love and practice of physical nourishment are intertwined. As she started coaching clients through weight-loss (and gain) by counseling on nutrition principles and guiding Heart Meditations to help them understand why they were having issues related to food, she saw an overwhelming number of clients get results through principles of healing. Meditations on the Fridge sheds light on how to do this at home. With personal stories, suggested meditations, and nutritional advice, her method is simple: learn how to tap into your inner-wisdom, and follow it. Mess up? Learn how not to beat yourself up about it, find the lesson in the experience, and try again with more success. Intrigued? You should be. Check out her book here.
Oh, and we still managed to get some insightful answers about Heart Meditation from Tarika, which we’ll be sharing with you soon! As she’ll be traveling this spring, offering only one-on-one guided meditation sessions meanwhile, we decided to wait until her SF-based classes and workshops start up again in summer. So…check back in a few for our interview with her, along with updated info on her group classes!
You can also check out her website, for information on how to book a FREE 20-minute initial consultation.
Photo: Manu Camargo
Post written for SFYogaMag.com