There are two categories of practice……

Āsana_22

“There are two categories of practice, the Śikṣaṇa Krama way, according to the rules,
or the Cikitsā Krama way, the application or adaptation of a posture
to suit a particular person or a particular situation.
Where postures need to be adapted to suit particular bodies and their limitations.
The authority for the postures comes from the teacher,
although some rules are indicated in the texts.”
– From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

For something to work you must participate positively….

sraddha

‎”For something to work you must participate positively.
In other words Śraddhā.”
– TKV Desikachar Madras 2000

Patañjali lists the nine kinds of obstacles that are confronted……

antararya

“In this Sūtra,
Patañjali lists the nine kinds of obstacles that are confronted by those who,
though fit and able to meditate on Īśvara, neglect to do so.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 30

Yama – How we relate, how we face the society we are part of……

yama

Yama – How we relate, how we face the society we are part of.
How we link ourselves to others in speech, action, confidence.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 30

Always raise and lower the arms in the plane of the movement…….

Āsana_25b

“Always raise and lower the arms in the plane of the movement.
This helps the forward movement by causing you
to arch the back slightly before you bend forward.
Traditionally arms are straight and placed behind the ears.”
– TKV Desikachar 1980

Only the Citta is the cause for Bandhana or Mokṣa.

bandhana

“Only the Citta is the cause for Bandhana or Mokṣa.”
– TKV Desikachar commentary on Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Six verse 6

Jñāna is like a sword to cut away Saṃśaya.

jnana

Jñāna is like a sword to cut away Saṃśaya.”
– T Krishnamacharya commentary on Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Four verse 41

Avidyā and Freedom do not exist together……

avidya

Avidyā and Freedom do not exist together.
Here Avidyā represents both the basis and attitude towards our action.
The aim of Yoga is to reach that state where our actions are not based on Avidyā.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 25

Can these four Yoga Aṅga be practiced by everyone at every stage of life?

anga

“Can these four Yoga AṅgaYama, Niyama, Āsana, Prāṇāyāma
– be practiced by everyone at every stage of life?
How often and how long should one practice?
How can we adapt our practice to changing circumstances?
These questions and others like them must be answered by a competent teacher,
according to each student’s individual circumstances.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 30

What is unpleasant is not desired…….

dvesa

“What is unpleasant is not desired.
The response of the mind is then to move away from it.
Whether in fact such a step did prevent Duḥkha is not immediately evident.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 8

Know the Breath from the feelings in the Āsana……

seated_pranayama_2

1. Know the Breath from the feelings in the Āsana.
2. Choose a ratio close to that used in Āsana.
3. Choose a technique to suit the day.
4. Choose a proper posture for the spine.
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

For standing Āsana it is not necessary to close the eyes…..

Āsana_64

“For standing Āsana it is not necessary to close the eyes.
As standing Āsana are usually at the beginning of a practice,
it can sometimes be distracting to close the eyes,
because of all the visual activity proceeding the practice.
Having the eyes open can also stop you becoming unbalanced as you move.
The eyes can be useful for checking alignment within dynamic movements.
You may not observe this with the eyes closed.
However, the attention with the eyes open should be passive and aware.”
– TKV Desikachar 1980

The Guru must judge how serious is the desire……

mantra

“The Guru must judge how serious is the desire and the faith
and then teach the Mantra that he considers most appropriate.
In any event,
he needs to know that it may be that there will be no positive result,
because a lot depends on the attitude of the student.”
T Krishnamacharya

Knowledge from the past prevails and influences me…..

asmita

“Knowledge from the past prevails and influences me to either judge or inquire.
Assuming my knowledge and my memory and I proceed is Asmitā Kleśa.
Assuming that I may be wrong and wishing to find out more is Asmitā Jñāna.
However to hesitate completely or question everything is Asmitā Kleśa.”
– TKV Desikachar commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 6

How I react or choose not to react is Asmitā…….

asmita

“I know something and I am presented with something different.
How I react or choose not to react is Asmitā.
The wrong response brings Duḥkha.
The right response Viveka.
One is a hasty assessment and one is wanting to find out more.
One is ‘assuming I know I proceed’,
the other is ‘wishing to know I proceed’.”
– TKV Desikachar commentary on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 6

Where are we starting from?……

asana_56

“We must consider the direction of one’s Āsana Practice.
Where are we starting from?
Where are we going to?
Is this journey of Pariṇāma working with immediate needs in mind?
Is this journey of Pariṇāma working with long term needs in mind?
Is this journey of Pariṇāma trying to integrate both immediate needs and long term needs?”
– TKV Desikachar 1980

Pratyāhāra is not feeding the minds identification with the senses……

pratyahara

Pratyāhāra is not feeding the tendency of the Citta to automatically form a positive, negative, or neutral identification with whatever stimuli the senses present to it. From that we can begin to understand how their external gathering activities stimulate our conscious and especially, unconscious choices.

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You put your mind in one place during an Āsana……

Āsana_14a

“You put your mind in one place during an Āsana,
the body compensates and places the escape elsewhere.”
– TKV Desikachar 1980

There is always Rāga, it just depends where we are in ourselves……

srimad_bhagavad_gita

There is always Rāga, it just depends where we are in ourselves in terms of a spectrum of being.
Thus Rāga can express itself within the spectrum of being as either a state of Jñāna Rāga
or a state of Kleśa Rāga or, as happens mostly, somewhere twixt the extremes of the two.
Either way according to TKV Desikachar’s teaching, progress is not possible without the drive of the emotional forces, they are the horses that pull the chariot.
As to which of the two paths (Jñāna Rāga or Kleśa Rāga) we find ourselves veering towards depends on our skill as a charioteer, coupled with our understanding of the nature of the forces/horses,
as well as the essential nature of the ‘food’ we ‘choose’ to feed them on.
Hence Desikachar’s quote:
“Each person has two forces Rāga and Dveṣa.
They are there to serve you, not you them.”
– TKV Desikachar on Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Three verse 34

The action of a posture may be delayed……

Āsana_12a

“The action of a posture may be delayed
because the student has tried to force the body into a posture.
Never measure something by its immediate effects.”
– From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992