Often when we are talking about Yoga we are not sure whether we……

Often when we are talking about Yoga we are not sure whether we are talking about Sādhana or Siddhi

“Often when we are talking about Yoga
we are not sure whether we are talking about Sādhana or Siddhi.”
TKV Desikachar France 1983

Said by AG Mohan to be Yoga Makaranda Part 2 by Sri T Krishnamacharya

AG Mohan on Krishnamacharya’s approach to Śīrṣāsana.
Said by AG Mohan to be from Yoga Makaranda Part 2
Also downloadable as a PDF

Also a downloadable PDF based on the Yoga Makaranda on Āsana practice,
especially variations around Śīrṣāsana (described here as Viparīta Karaṇī Mudrā)

Words have meanings based on roots and on usage……

yoga

“Words have meanings based on roots and on usage, its origin and how it is utilised.
Yoga is a good example of a word based on its original meaning and convention.”
TKV Desikachar France 1983

Even though we feel good about Yoga and we have some……

yoga

“Even though we feel good about Yoga and we have some understanding,
we have problems relating this to others.
Even before saying anything they have one idea or another.
We have problems communicating with people when it comes to Yoga.
Not so with Art, etc.”
TKV Desikachar France 1983

A Yoga Practice given to TKV Desikachar when 25 years old……

A Yoga Practice given to TKV Desikachar when 25 years old by his father T Krishnamacharya.

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Of the Four Aspects of the Breath which is more important?

kumbhaka

“Of the Four Aspects of the breath which is more important,
(such as) holding after inhalation by will and so on?”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

Āsana (posture) is the interface between the body and……

Āsana (posture) is the interface between the body and the systemic energy processes.
Prāṇāyāma (seated breathing) is the interface between the systemic energy processes and the psyche.
Dhyānam (meditation) is the interface between the psyche and the awareness that pervades the whole being.

You must have teachers who will have supervision to respond in……

TKV Desikachar teaching at Gaunts House

“You must have teachers who will have supervision to respond in the following fields:
Health, Psychology and Spirituality.”
TKV Desikachar speaking with his senior Western students London 1998

If the Saṅga is at the Puruṣa level it will stay; if it is at the Prakṛti level it……

sanga

“If the Saṅga is at the Puruṣa level it will stay;
if it is at the Prakṛti level it will change.”
TKV Desikachar speaking with his senior Western students London 1998

The Saṅga must be springing from a……

sanga

“The Saṅga must be springing from a common source if we want it to live.
It’s not a question of legal status nor physical meetings.
It is not the doing that will make the Saṅga.”
TKV Desikachar speaking with his senior Western students London 1998

The Indian culture says: ‘Dharma will protect the one who protects the Dharma’……

dharma

“The Indian culture says:
Dharma will protect the one who protects the Dharma‘.
If you serve something it will serve you.
The more I honour the other person the better will be the response,
of course it may take some time.”
TKV Desikachar speaking with his senior Western students London 1998

How is it that we fail to to act right, see right, communicate right, even……

srimad_bhagavad_gita

“How is it that we fail to to act right, see right, communicate right,
even though we have all the resources?
What are the indications of this failure?
What indicates that all is well?
Arjuna of the Indian epic Mahābhārata represents the model of
what clouds our consciousness and what can break this cloud.”
– TKV Desikachar’s introduction to a seminar on the Bhagavad Gītā 1998

Talking about the alternative healing system……

Claude Paris 1999
Claude Marachel:
Talking about the alternative healing system, I think we have to be very careful. Sometimes in Western countries, we see that everything is mixed. In the field of alternative systems, a lot of Viveka or discernment is needed.

TKV Desikachar:
What has happened to some of these alternative systems of therapy, including Yoga, is that things have become a bit shallow.

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My concern now is how I can behave with people……

Matsendrasana2

“My concern now is how I can behave with people.
It took such little time to twist the body into Pūrna Matsyendrāsana.
But what of it? I was so lean, and I was working hard.
But now it is so painful if I make a mistake with somebody.
This is the hard part, this is the Yoga part.”
– TKV Desikachar from an interview in the Journal Viniyoga Italia on Yoga and Well Being.

I am very impressed by what you said about your father giving some……

Desikachar_France_1999

Viniyoga in Italia:
I am very impressed by what you said about your father giving some students an oil bath. Do you think that sometimes a Yoga teacher needs to give a massage or has to touch the student?
TKV Desikachar:
Well, if a person comes with a backache, you have to examine him or her. You have to touch the person and feel the person. As a part of observation, we need to do that. Sometimes as a part of encouragement we can do that. At times, I take the pulse, so they feel that I care. But I have not and I don’t like to massage our students. I always ask the family to do that.
Viniyoga in Italia:
It could also create a dependence.
TKV Desikachar:
Not only that, but if you do it for one, you will have to do it for others. I want the students to be on their own. It is an education in Svastha.
– TKV Desikachar from an interview in the Journal Viniyoga Italia on Yoga and Well Being.

Do you think it is important for Yoga teachers to mention diet and……

TKV_5

Question to TKV Desikachar:
Do you think it is important for Yoga teachers to mention diet and lifestyle to students?

TKV Desikachar Response: 
As you know, here in Madras, when people come to the Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram or to me personally, they come because they have some problem. Every day they come, every day with some problem. If we have a problem, especially if it is a chronic problem, it is both in the body and in the mind, whether it manifests as asthma, diabetes, headache, or blood pressure. Thus we cannot help but talk about everything. That is why we, here in Madras, need to know something about Āyurveda, Yoga and western medical science. For these reasons our teachers are taught physiology, anatomy, Āyurveda and Yoga.

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In this context what about Āyurveda?

TKV_5

Viniyoga in Italia: In this context what about Āyurveda?

TKV Desikachar: Āyurveda, is, in my opinion, the most complete system of life God ever created, because it encompasses everything in nature. And it is a positive system of health. It is called Āyurveda, or knowledge of life. I have no hesitation to say that this system takes into account every aspect, it is not only medicine, not only food, not only life-style, but it is also the philosophy, the religion and the mantra-recitation. I have never come across a system that is so complete for the health of the body as Āyurveda. Unfortunately, it is nearly dead. We don’t have many people. Because Āyurveda is so complete and vast that a doctor would need an enormous experience.

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Today in Europe there is a going back to what is called alternative……

Viniyoga in Italia: Today in Europe there is a going back to what is called alternative medicines, like herbal treatment and the traditional dietary laws, thermal baths and other traditional treatments. Do you think these traditional approaches have a relevance in today’s world?

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Do you think that a Yoga teacher in the West should go through some……

Desikachar_France_1999

Question : Do you think that a Yoga teacher in the West should go through some therapy or analysis in order to be aware of the developments in this field and to meet the growing demand for psychological help?

Desikachar : The term “Yoga teacher in the West” seems to suggest that everyone has the same way of teaching. This is not so.

There are those who only give instructions about techniques, like explaining how to use a computer to someone. There is not a lot happening in this teaching situation and the awareness of psychological questions would seem relatively unimportant.

But there is another situation where techniques are not the only element involved. These Yoga teachers are personally concerned by the evolution of their students. They cannot be ignorant, otherwise it would be like the blind leading the blind.

In this second case, and I know many teachers in the West who do this, they look to have as comprehensive a knowledge as possible in many fields, including psychology. The way they go about it is up to them.

Interview with TKV Desikachar May 1999 during seminar on Yoga and the 21st Century.

If you have learned something really well……

If you have learned something really well

“If you have learned something really well,
then the way you express it will not be the same way you learned it.”
– T Krishnamacharya

Mahā Mudrā – the great gesture, is a seated asymmetrical posture……

Mahā Mudrā – the great gesture, is a seated asymmetrical posture combining forward flexion of the trunk with straightening of the back. At the forefront of the boundary between the main types of Āsana and Prāṇāyāma, this Mudrā is the central pillar of his teaching of technique.”
Claude Marachel was a long serving and senior student of TKV Desikachar over 33 years from 1969-2002. This is an extract from Claude talking about what Desikachar told him about his father, Krishnamacharya.

In 1970, TKV Desikachar asked his father and guru, Shri T. Krishnamacharya……

tkv_tk_1980

In 1970, TKV Desikachar asked his father and Guru, Śrī T Krishnamacharya ten fundamental questions about Yoga. The following is an extract of one of the questions in the interview, which took place in the Kanada language.

“5A. Why are there so many different methods to hand down the teachings of a master? What are the reasons for this?
This situation comes from the absence of loyalty to only one master. The traditional method of teaching and of handing down the teaching is the Guru Paramparā. For a disciple, it consists of receiving the instructions of a master day after day, until there is enough knowledge. At the end of an assiduous study with the Teacher, the student progressively becomes a teacher himself and he starts teaching other disciples. This continuity, from teacher to student, in the same tradition, constitutes the Guru Paramparā. The high number of present methods is due to interruptions in the traditional system of handing down the teaching. It can also be due to the weakness of certain teachers.

5B. What are the consequences of these different methods?
The lowering of the average level and the weakening of the knowledge of the students of Yoga.

5C. What solutions can be proposed to mitigate this situation?
Nowadays, there is no solution to this problem.”

Observation on Modern Yoga Practice?

“A Yoga teacher I know was met with this response when trying to encourage class students to embrace a home practice – ‘I haven’t time to practice at home, I am going to four classes a week!’.”

Yoga is a journey to be experienced.

“Yoga is a journey to be experienced.”

Yoga is a process by which you grow into self understanding.

“Yoga is a process by which you grow into self understanding.”