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21 Questions with…Holistic Healer Aaron Teich

Considered the Madonna of healers in the yoga comunity, Aaron Teich is the founder of Shuniya Healing, a holistic healing center that offers acupuncture, energy healing, and Chinese herbal medicine. He also teaches weekly Kundalini Yoga class at Yoga Shanti in Sag Harbor and recently expanded his Manhattan-based practice by adding a Bridgehampton location.

Here, the licensed acupuncturist and herbalist answers our 21 questions.

1. When getting ready for my day’s yoga practice I always… gather myself and aim to unify all of who I am – thought, feeling, emotion, sensation, etc.

2. When in need of a quick recharge I… stand up, raise my arms overhead, and stretch my whole body. Then I bend over, touch my toes, and just hang there for 30-60 seconds before slowly coming back up.

3. Before meditating, it’s important to remember… that meditation is a practice.

4. The thing I love most about Chinese medicine… is that it is essentially an applied philosophy.

5. People would be surprised to know that acupuncture… is very relaxing.

6. When practicing yoga, it’s important to bear in mind… that it is not about flexibility, but rather engaging one’s limit mindfully.

7. On a typical Saturday night you’ll find me… having dinner with friends or cuddled on my couch with my wife watching a movie.

8. The thing I love most about the Hamptons is… the wide variety of natural landscapes.

9. New Yorkers are, for the most part, too… distracted.

10. When I practice yoga you’ll find me wearing… shorts and a t-shirt.

11. When I’m at Shuniya you’ll find me wearing… a white tunic, khakis, and a pair of Toms.

12. I could never do yoga without… a timer because each Kundalini Yoga set includes a sequence of exercises involving movement and breath that are done for specified lengths of time.

13. The best life lesson I ever learned was… if you don’t love the journey you can’t reach the destination.

14. The beauty products I can’t live without are… smiles and laughter.

15. My favorite spots to eat in Manhattan are… Peacefood Café, Candle Café, and Angelica’s Kitchen because I genuinely love simple, delicious vegetarian food.

16. When in need of peace and quiet I… lock myself in our yoga room at home and do a long yoga set followed by deep meditation — terribly cliché, I know, but nonetheless true.

17. The most relaxing vacation I ever took was… my honeymoon in Santorini, Greece.

18. A good stress remedy is… to massage your feet under running cold water for three minutes. By drawing energy from the head to the feet, this ancient hydrotherapy practice is simultaneously grounding and refreshing.

19. The most gratifying part about teaching a yoga class is… having people recognize that through their own effort of movement, breath, and concentration, they have the capacity to feel absolutely fantastic – nothing outside of themselves is required.

20. My favorite healthy snack is… apple slices with organic almond butter.

21. My guilty pleasure is… sleeping in.