Awareness is a quality not a quantity.

cit devanagari

Awareness (Cit) is a quality not a quantity.

Śraddhā is essential for progress, whether in Yoga or……

sraddha

Śraddhā is essential for progress, whether in Yoga or any other endeavour.
It is a feeling that cannot be expressed or intellectually discussed.
It, however, is a feeling that is not always uncovered in every person.
When absent or weak, it is evident through the lack of stability and focus in a person.
Where present and strong, it is evident through the commitment, perseverance and enthusiasm the person exhibits.
For such a person, life is meaningful.”
– TKV Desikachar

It is Paramparā alone that ensures that words of the texts are interpreted correctly.

parampara

“There is no question that Guru Paramparā is essential for proper teaching,
understanding and practice of all Śāstra, whether Yoga, Veda or Vedāṅga.
It is Paramparā alone that ensures that words of the texts are interpreted correctly.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 20

There are times when our Dhyāna feels like being merged with……

vitarka_vicara

There are times when our Dhyāna feels like being merged with ones lover,
a state full of presence, vibrancy, passion and bliss.
Tempting to want more of the same,
however Yoga says we can’t have our bliss and want to repeat it.
Also Yoga reminds us that a state of bliss is different from
and merely a stage towards a state of oneness.
Personal reflection on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 17

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Its not until we create a space will we know what can arise.

Its not until we create a space will we know what can arise.

Śraddhā – A sense of confidence arising from the source……

sraddha

A recent surge of questions from Yoga teachers around the notion of Śraddhā.
Collating and ordering the range of questions being asked we arrive at:
– What is Śraddhā?
– How do we offer a relevant meaning for Śraddhā to a group class?
– How do we teach Śraddhā to a group of students?
– How do we plan a practice with Śraddhā as the focus for a group class?
Before responding more in a future post I wanted to let the questions sit as reflections for all interested in this topic.
Meanwhile helpful reference points could be:
The Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 20
The Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Six verse 37
The Bhagavad Gītā Chapter Seventeen verse 2

During such a moment, without distractions……

cit devanagari

“During such a moment, without distractions,
the power of the source of perception,
full of clarity and completeness, shines forth.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 3

If you want to be happy take up Yoga……

tk2008

Picture courtesy of KYM Archives

“With discipline and modest fare.
Stay lean and keep the fire going in your belly.
Think of God and repeat his words – silently and out loud.

If you want to be happy take up Yoga.
If you don’t; don’t.
Follow your Dharma.
Stay where you belong.
Sing songs and thank the sun every day.

Look sharp, a vagrant mind will lead you astray.
Practice, pay attention and be amazed.

Doubt burns up everything, including the doubter.
To banish it bow down to the Lord.”

– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra C1 v5

– To Download this post as a PDF

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Better to be clear about being confused……

Better to be clear about being confused,
rather than being confused about being clear.

Extract from Module One Yoga Sūtra Study Workshop

Yoga Teachings on Emotions, Mind, Body and Energy

Chapter One has 51 Sūtra and is called SAMĀDHI PĀDAḤ or the Path to Integrating the Psyche.

This first chapter introduces the psyche, its activities, practices required for change and the possibilities for practice according to the inherent abilities of the practitioner. This chapter is for a student who already has a quality of a Samāhīta Citta or a stable psyche.

– Primary concepts in the Yoga Sūtra Chapter One

Theme One verses 1-11 – Cit and Citta

  • v1-4 – Definition and Purpose of Yoga
  • v5 – 11 – Activities of the Citta or Psyche

Theme Two verses 12-22 – Jñāna and Śraddhā

  • v12 – 19 – Meditation or Dhyānam as Jñāna Yoga
  • v20 – 22 – The role of Śraddhā

Theme Three verses 23-39 – Bhakti and Eka Tattva

  • v23 – 31 – Meditation or Dhyānam as Bhakti Yoga
  • v32 – 39 – Short Term Meditational Strategies

Theme Four verses 40-51 – Sabīja and Nirbīja Samādhi

  • v40 – 46 – Refinement of Dhyānam
  • v47 – 51 – Final Steps
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From Krishnamacharya’s commentary on the Yoga Sūtra

Picture courtesy of KYM Archives

Picture courtesy of KYM Archives

“Sages say that the fruits of this vine are three
wisdom, wealth and Joy.
Those free of desire pick wisdom
Those full of desire pick money
Those full of devotion pick the fruit of joy.

These are what the world is seeking
whether rushing forth or keeping still
But once you know the essence
of this triple bearing vine
There is no need to choose among its flavours.

Bhīṣma said Yoga’s lord is Kṛṣṇa,
beloved of all the gods
Patañjali said hold back your mind to silence the din
Nāthamuni, too, said follow the Yoga path
away from sickness, ignorance and fear.

I remember the friend of Yogavalli – Nārāyaṇa
four armed friend with bow, sword, club, discus and conch.”

– From T Krishnamacharya’s commentary on the Yoga Sūtra known as Yogavallī

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Abhyāsa is the practice that leads to Viveka……

viveka

Abhyāsa is the practice that leads to Viveka,
the state which there are no external distractions to prevent clear perception.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 14

Abhyāsa, when performed with reverence, without interruption, over……

abhyasa

Abhyāsa, when performed with reverence,
without interruption,
over a long period of time,
will result in a healthy body, acute senses and extraordinary alertness.”
– T Krishnamacharya’s commentary to Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 14

Yoga Sūtra on Stress – An interview with TKV Desikachar

Sainte_Baume-April_1998_1Yoga Sūtra on Stress
– Interview with TKV Desikachar by AV Balasubramanian and Paul Harvey
Downloadable as a PDF
– Originally published in KYM Darśanam February 1995.

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On Sūtra and Sūtrakara

tk2008

Picture courtesy of KYM Archives

Excerpts from an essay by T Krishnamacharya Downloadable as a PDF.
Summarised and translated from the Saṃskṛta essay of T Krishnamacharya composed in January 1981, by TKV Desikachar and Sujaya Sridhar.
Originally published in KYM Darśanam February 1991.

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Learning Support for Chanting Yoga Sūtra Chapter One v1-11 with Krama

yoga_sutra_cover

A self-learning suggestion to help train your ear and tongue is offered below with a Yoga Sūtra chant offering an introduction to the first four verses in each of the four chapters.

The chanting here, recorded at a 2007 Postgraduate Programme Summer Retreat. is arranged in a developmental sequence that offers a progressive review of these 11 verses and now requires nearly 80 lines of chanting to complete what would normally be done in 12 lines.
To Download or Listen
To Download the Chant Sheet in Romanised Saṃskṛta with Notations