Bathing in the river – Haridwar

A few members of the Tuesday 6pm class gave money regularly over a few months so I could hand small donations out to the poor. Local people in Haridwar were so grateful when I was able pass that generosity on.


Money was also given to buy flower malas and leaf boats to offer to the local Goddesses and the wonderful river mother- Jai Maa Ganga!


The sun was rising on a new day. The beautiful fast flowing waters of Mother Ganga washed all my old karma away. It is such a refreshing and uplifting experience. Offerings were made for our shared prosperity and health.

IMG_3595Birla Ghat, a public place where marble steps lead to river, is filled with song, devotional activities and natural energy. I come back here time and time again because nothing makes me feel as good as an early morning dunk in the naturally high pH (8.9 pH) waters of the Ganga.


A boy tries to catch coconuts, which are thrown into the Ganges as offerings for peoples’ prosperity. Blessings to us all on this beautiful day!





Waiting to leave Delhi

Calls to prayer woke me this morning at 5 am. Broadcasts from minarets echoed across the background noise of the waking city. This podcast captures the sound of that ‘ungodly’ godly sound.

Seaking retreat from the dusty streets of downtown Delhi, I took refuge in the lush green grounds of the Lakshmi-Narayana temple. The first morning light illuminated marble of this beautiful complex. Here I was able to release some residual stress and sit in peace.

Minor birds in the temple grounds seemed to be sharing news of the day. All around parrots, squirrels and abundant bird life seemed excited about life.

Feeling pangs of breakfast stirring, I killed two metaphorical birds with one stone and headed to Chandni Chowk to see what was there and find something to eat. All I can say is I’m glad the shops weren’t open because it seemed like a place that could get very crowded.


IMG_3584After stopping in a side alley for some lassi, I caught a cycle rickshaw back to the hotel. The crowds at Sadar Bazar were amplified by people buying presents and fireworks for the forthcoming festival of Diwali. Insane traffic!

My train leaves today at 3pm. Looking forward to waking up tomorrow in my fav town of Haridwar.




India updates for October 2019

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Ali will be in India from October 3rd to October 30th

See below for the NZ YOGA CENTRE class timetable 
See below for invites to our India Brunch – Sunday 29th Sept

INDIA 2019 – Oct 3rd-30th

Follow Ali’s weekly India blog at

After bathing in the sacred Ganga at Haridwar, Ali will head up to Badrinath and Valley of Flowers high up in the Himalayas


She will then return to Delhi and pick up her new India group and return to Haridwar.


We will visit Rishikesh, and stay at the Parmarth Niketan Ashram



We will then visit Guruji’s ashram in the rural area of Barsana.

Here we will engage in a special lingam installation ceremony to honour Guruji’s mahasamadhi (passing)


Ali and the group will visit her yoga kids in the remote village of Lodhauli, Barsana

After Barsana, the group will travel to Jaipur


Ali’s weekly blog will be posted via her Facebook and website page

NZ YOGA CENTRE – October timetable

WEEK 1 – Ali will be here teaching 

  • Sunday 29th September – 9.30 am class will run as normal,
  • Sunday 29th September – INDIA BRUNCH from 12pm-2pm Ali and Milan will host a special India Brunch (RSVP essential)
  • Monday  30th September – classes will run as normal at 9.30 am and 6.00pm
  • Tuesday 1st October – classes will run as normal at 9.30 am and 6.00pm
  • Wednesday 2nd October – classes will run as normal at 7.00 pm


  • Monday 7th October –student lead classes 9.30am & 6.00 pm – $10
  • Tuesday 8th October – student lead class 9.30am – $10
  • Wednesday 9th October – Class with Milan – $10 koha (see Milan’s biog below)


  • Monday 14th October – student lead classes 9.30am & 6.00 pm -$10
  • Tuesday 15th October – student lead class 9.30am – $10
  • Wednesday 16th October – Class with Milan – $10 koha (see Milan’s biog below)


  • Monday 21st October – student lead classes 9.30am & 6.00 pm – $10
  • Tuesday 22nd October – student lead class 9.30am – $10
  • Wednesday 23rd October – Class with Milan – $10 koha  (see Milan’s biog below)


  • Monday 28th October – student lead classes 9.30am & 6.00 pm – $10
  • Tuesday 29th October – student lead class 9.30am – $10
  • Wednesday 30th October – Class with Milan  – $10 koha   (see Milan’s biog below)

Milan has been practicing yoga for 17 years and has been coming to Ali’s classes since 2008. Like Ali, he has a Masters in Religious Studies and has travelled India extensively. He attained his certification as a hatha yoga instructor at Yoga Darshanam in Mysore, India. His classes are always tailored towards the students present in each class, but in general he focuses on strong, dynamic and aware practice.


A normal timetable of classes will resume throughout November

6 reasons why I’m strict vegetarian …

Ali Hale Tilley (yoga teacher and NZ Yoga Centre owner), explains why she gave up eating meat two decades ago, and has gained numerous benefits from her choices.


  1. To support spiritual purity

My relationship with India taught me that a strict vegetarian lifestyle, together with a disciplined yoga practice, promotes real spiritual clarity. We are what we eat! Therefore, my dietary choices are reflected in the longevity and clarity of my yoga and meditation practices.

Plus, choosing sattvic food (pure and alkaline), which means eating fresh, locally grown vegetarian or vegan food, provides me with huge vitality. Similarly, eating ‘pure veg’ food, which excludes all meat, chicken, fish, eggs, and gelatin products, supports my spiritual and physical well being.

My Guruji took dietary purity to another level. At his ashram in Barsana, we always cooked bhojan food, which prevented us from tasting food during cooking, and yet allowed us to offer ‘pure veg’ food to the temple deities. Blessed food becomes prasad.

As a result of my commitment to pure eating, I can walk into any spiritual environment and know my conscience is clear and my spiritual vibrations are fine-tuned enough to receive any blessings available.

  1. To avoid spiritual pollution

My godfather was a pig farmer so I got to see first-hand the squalor and stench of pigs! Similarly, feeding testosterone to beef cattle, estrogen to chickens, and using chemicals to disinfect sheep can affect our hormonal systems, leading to high rates of aggression, endometriosis, and immune dysfunction.

In contrast to the purity of sattvic food, meat products are tamasic, which means they are dead, highly acidic, and full of toxic waste, such as heavy metals, antibiotics, fertilizers and parasites.

With my gut is clear of tamasic pollution, I have the intuitive advantage of having the clarity to navigate through life’s journey with confidence and enthusiasm.

  1. To practice yoga morality

Ahimsa, the first of yoga’s moral codes, means practicing non-harming and non-violence. Yoga asks us to restrain our violent and selfish urges, and avoid causing cruelty or contributing to the suffering of any sentient beings.

Personally, I cannot see how one can reconcile meat-eating with the practice of ahimsa. As a yogi, I practice what I preach and would feel hypocritical saying ‘Namaste’ or chanting ‘OM’ one minute and tucking into a piece of fish or meat the next.  No one can afford to ignore the karmic debt of consuming animals that have suffered on the way to the dinner table.

  1. To help the environment

New Zealand’s Primary Industries (meat and dairy) have contributed to native forests being cut down, land being cleared, grass being chemically fertilized, and pastures being irrigated with communal aquifers.  Grazing animals belch methane, toxic effluents washes into waterways, culled meat requires expensive transport systems, and abattoirs stink like hell. 

However, by leading an organic vegetarian lifestyle, I feel I am doing my small part to slow down the looming climate crisis. My dietary requirements invite crop diversity, organic composting, sustainable production, and community gardening.   I am actively invested in helping save the planet, and my diet is part of that intention.

  1. To maintain ethical integrity

I am ethically opposed to animals being force fed antibiotics and growth hormones, and exposed to inhumane killing methods.  How can I talk about gaining personal inner peace and going with the flow in my classes if I personally rely on energy sources that are traumatized, sick and suffering?

I recognize that although I rely on dairy produce, which can also use inhumane treatment of dairy cattle, I try where possible to buy locally produced organic products from suppliers that ethically look after their animals. Maybe it is time to invest in a crowd-shared cow if anyone is interested!

  1. To sustain a healthy lifestyle

Due to my vegetarian and yogic lifestyle I never get colds or suffer from the flu and I have such a strong immune system that I rarely get sick or visit the doctor.  My largely alkaline diet means I have plenty of energy and an excellent gut flora. I am currently reminding myself to chew my food properly so my digestions stays strong!

Recent studies have linked red meat consumption with bowel cancer and breast cancer, and not a week goes by without a new case of a salmonella or e-coli outbreak from meat related products.

Many meat eaters thinks that vegetarian cooking is difficult or expensive. However, with a million vegetarian recipes on Google and the mindset to go meat-free a growing concern,  there is no time like the present to join the global movement of taking ethical responsibility for the planet by going MEAT FREE



Sunday Yoga Book club

This class  applies deeper knowledge to the different paths of yoga


Week 4 (28th July) invites participants to research the path of Karma Yoga, and chose a reading that is interesting. Ali will supply a set reading for week 4 for those people who find online research challenging. Tip: put ‘karma yoga’ in the google search engine or look up the wikipedia page

Week 3 will focus on the same subject – What is Yoga?”.  This approach gives us a depth of knowledge to build on, and allows us to compare our new reading with previous readings. different aspects of Karma yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Jnana yoga and Raja yoga give people the opportunity to work with which ‘path’ best suits your personality.                Read pages 6-7 of Yoga Mind Body by the Sivananda Vedanta Centre

Weeks 1 & 2: The last two readings looked at different aspects of what yoga means, and how yoga changes in different cultures and eras.
  1. Read the selected pages closely, or focus on a particular passage.
  2. As you read, answer these 3 questions: What do you like about this reading? What don’t you agree with? Is there anything you find confusing or want clarified?
  3. Reflect on what you think about the article/book/ passage.
  4. Make notes if you want to clarify your thoughts
  5. Discuss your ideas with members of the Sunday Book club

‘Yoga Book Club’ SUNDAY 9.30 am -11 am – cost $15

  • Doors will open at 9.20 am sharp for silent contemplation.
  • Please enter quietly and put your mat your mat down in a mindful way.
  • At 9.30 am Teacher-led conversation will continue for 15 minutes
  • A ‘normal’ yoga (active postures, breath work, mudras, therapeutic work) will follow on from there.
  • See you there!


new class

Fundraising with Warm-Hearted Yogis


We did it!

Today, collectively, the community that supports the NZ Yoga Centre raised enough money to buy a new heat-pump for our yoga studio in Marton. We raised $3050 in 10 days! Around 45 people pledged to the ‘Warm-Hearted Yogis’ Give-a-little page.

The amazing people from Wellington were among the first to give. These people know me personally, and we have shared in affection, laughter, and overlapping friendships for many years. 4 family-members/ old neighbourhood friends also pledged early, heeding the call to give.

Then, once our pledge board went up in the yoga studio, class members also started to give. They continued to give in a groundswell of generosity and sharing. 7 pledges came from local businesses. 5 people gave anonymously. Was one of these people you?

All of these people have something in common. They care about collective good, and they are open handed and openhearted. They might know me and know how much I give to others. However, they are not uninterested, or self-interested, or even tight-fisted.  They are the true yogis, true family, and my heart flows with gratitude towards them.

You can see their names on the Give-a-little page

Some people feel that being asked to make donations is a personal burden. Yet, some enlightened people see that giving a is a blessing because it allows generosity to flow.

Thank you to everyone who gave to this project. Each of you will be invited to our Matariki/ mid-winter Xmas party in late June 2019. I hope some of you will come to share in the fun and warmth.

… And, for those of you who did not give, or who regard yourself as a true yogi, it is not too late to make a pledge. The Give-a-little page is still open till Wednesday 15th May. Any extra donations will cover the installation fee.


That’s what I consider true generosity: You give your all and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing.      

Simone De Beauvoir

Autumn 2019

The NZ Yoga Centre turns 2 on May 5th! The garden is growing and the centre is flourishing.


Thanks to everyone who supported the yoga classes, special events, art Space developments, and excursions. Let hope the following year is even more exciting!