The practice of Yoga is like a mirror……

Āsana_31

“The practice of Yoga is like a mirror,
it helps us to know something about ourselves on a particular day,”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

By observing how the breath responds in Āsana……

“By observing how the breath responds in Āsana i.e.
Forward Bends.
Backward Bends.
Lying Postures.
Inverted Postures.
Twist Poses.
As to whether there is a better quality in either inhalation or exhalation,
one can decide how to proceed in Prāṇāyāma.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

In Āsana practice there is an expression of the state of the mind……

Āsana_16a

“In Āsana practice there is an expression of the state of the mind,
the practice can be a handle to hold the mind.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

There are simple postures for Prāṇāyāma and Dhyāna…….

Āsana_52

“There are simple postures for Prāṇāyāma and Dhyāna,
so that we can relax in the body and not be distracted by it.
There are challenging postures, to enable us to master our bodies and
for young people who will be engaged by the performance aspect of the posture.
There are also corrective postures.”
– From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

According to Krishnamacharya, one who has not mastered the Bāhya Kumbhaka……

bahya kumbhaka

“According to Krishnamacharya,
one who has not mastered the Bāhya Kumbhaka,
has not mastered the breath.”
– TKV Desikachar 1988

Kumbhaka is the continuation of a specific movement that……

kumbhaka

Kumbhaka is the continuation of a specific movement that preceded it.”
– TKV Desikachar December 1987

A person who does not have a conscious feeling of the Recaka and……

kumbhaka

“A person who does not have a conscious feeling of the Recaka and Pūraka
should not go into Kumbhaka.”
– TKV Desikachar December 1987

The lower abdomen is the dullest part of the spine……

apana

“The lower abdomen is the dullest part of the spine,
it is the starting point for the exhalation.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

So much happens in the spine with the breath……

maha_mudra

“So much happens in the spine with the breath,
we need to be aware of our breathing to have a maximum effect on the spine.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

Your mind is a product of your food, memory is linked to food……

smrti

“Your mind is a product of your food, memory is linked to food.
My stability, my confidence is linked to food.
All these facts are mentioned in the texts.
For these reasons I said that food is very important and becomes me.
Not just the muscles, but the whole me, the whole personality.”
– TKV Desikachar from an interview in the Journal Viniyoga Italia on Yoga and Well Being.

As is the food in front of you, so is the mind behind you.

annam

“As is the food in front of you,
so is the mind behind you.”
– TKV Desikachar Class on Sāṃkhya 1979

It is usual to start a lesson be it, Chanting, Sūtra, Āsana with a prayer……

tkv_tk_3_1980

“It is usual to start a lesson be it, ChantingSūtra, Āsana, with a prayer.
A prayer is recited and repeated according to the study or purpose of the lesson,
to show respect for the subject.
When the student is familiar with the prayer they repeat it along with the teacher.
Focusing the study with a prayer helps to recall earlier study, lineage of repetition.
The student is given the meaning later.
After the lesson another prayer is said to offer thanks for the learning and for everybody.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

The message of the Bhagavad Gītā is…….

srimad_bhagavad_gita

“The message of the Bhagavad Gītā is:
The vision of the lord is certain through
singular devotion developed by honouring ones Dharma
in a spirit that leads to clarity and detachment.”
– TKV Desikachar Commentary on Gītārtha Saṃgraha of Śrī Yāmunācārya Śloka One

Krishnamacharya would introduce the Sūtra philosophy when……

sutra

Krishnamacharya would introduce the Sūtra philosophy
when students were resting during an Āsana practice,
because he felt that this was the only time they had available to them.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

What is most vital to a person for everlasting happiness……

srimad_bhagavad_gita

“What is most vital to a person for everlasting happiness
is to understand the nature of consciousness
and the Lord and his created entities.”
– TKV Desikachar Commentary on Gītārtha Saṃgraha of Śrī Yāmunācārya Śloka Four

How do we know that the Āsana has served its purpose?……

Āsana_24b

“How do we know that the Āsana  has served its purpose?”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

What interests you most in Āsana?……

TKV_5

Three questions given by Desikachar in a retreat in 1978

“1. What interests you most in Āsana?
2. What distinguishes Āsana from Prāṇāyāma?
3. What is hard to teach? Āsana and/or Prāṇāyāma, or something else?”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

The attention is within the posture if we concentrate on the breath.

Āsana_14a

“The attention is within the posture if we concentrate on the breath.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

A teacher needs to know a students body and state of mind…….

TKV Desikachar teaching at Gaunts House

“A teacher needs to know a students body and state of mind
to prepare a suitable practice,
take into account the particular students problems,
be they physical or psychological.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

Where do Āsana lead us?……

Āsana_47

“Where do Āsana lead us?
1. For seated practices. (Adhyātmika – Concerning our essence)
To stay in a stable position with the spine erect for Dhyāna or preparation for Dhyāna.
2.  For health. (Cikitsā – Therapeutics)
They do something for the energy flow of the body.
3. Ability to master the body. (Śakti – Power)
Not necessarily to promote health but to show that we can master the body.
Often these are good for health, though many are only useful as challenges.”
– From my study notes with TKV Desikachar.

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One should practice and inquire into the effects of the practice…….

One should practice and inquire into the effects

“One should practice and
inquire into the effects of the practice
as well as the practice.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

We must discover why we practice.

TKV_5

“We must discover why we practice.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

The senses can be faster than the mind in triggering Saṃskāra.

indriya

“The senses (Indriya) can be faster than the mind in triggering Saṃskāra.”
– TKV Desikachar commentary on Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Three verse 41

Avidyā is anything else other than Vidyā.

avidya

Avidyā is anything else other than Vidyā.”
Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 3
– TKV Desikachar January 1997

Whatever perceives is always right……

drastr

“Whatever perceives is always right,
it is the mind that colours what we see.”
– TKV Desikachar 1979 on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 4