Applying the language, insights and techniques from the wisdom literature of yoga into Asana practice will bring this philosophy to light in a practical way. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are an uncanny depiction of the human condition and potential for transformation. Standing poses, inversions and basic backbends in this workshop will uplift the heart while anchoring the body and mind.
How am I able, and how have I come to embrace this life?
Guruji introduced me to the wisdom teachings, the Yoga Sutras, the Bhagavad Gita, and the Hatha Yoga Pradipika. The Upanishads, with their poetry and mystery, have further inspired how I approach weaving the practice of Yoga into every corner of my life. Yes, the “corners” can be sharp, with the twists and turns in our lives, and yet it is through these that the we polish facets of understanding into clarity, gratitude, empathy, and serenity. What Guruji called the Virtues, or healthy Vŗittis described in sutra 1.33 of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, have shaped my attitudes toward things and helped to radically change my outlook on life. Perhaps this is part of maturation, or getting older and “wiser”, but without guideposts it is easy to wander astray among the many distractions of modern day living. Śri BKS Iyengar gave everything to his studies, students, practice, and family. His life, with his own mortal struggles, became an example of one who could turn the tide of mental and physical challenges into a benevolent and wholesome life.
Guruji’s virtues (and my adaptation): “Maitri” friendliness (kindness), “Karuna” compassion (empathy), “Mudita” joy in other’s growth (respect and honor in one another’s growth), “Upeksha” indifference or neutrality to those full of vice (equanimity).
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