Let us go into Siddhi, here the important word is Samādhi……

Picture courtesy of KYM Archives

Picture courtesy of KYM Archives

“Let us go into Siddhi, here the important word is Samādhi.
Unless we are born like that, then it’s a Siddhi, Samādhi is a Siddhi.
When we are in a state of absorption in something we are in Samādhi.
After which we appreciate the object in question and understand it more clearly.”
– TKV Desikachar France 1983

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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

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. It happens that in one week someone can become an expert in massage. With the help of postal courses you become an Āyurveda expert. The intentions are good, some people may want to learn fast, but what happens is that this state of things brings disrepute to some of the great ancient traditions like Āyurveda. It has taken me three years to convince an Indian to go to an Āyurveda doctor. This is because of the bad reputation the tradition now has.

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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?

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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……

TKV_5

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?

TKV Desikachar: Today these are even more relevant than before. Because we are becoming like machines. My mother used to give baths to my children. The love and care of the grandmother was there for the child. My father used to give baths to some of his students. He was giving oil-baths to his students, that is how he knew exactly what was happening to their body. He would massage and thus know. Today everything is mechanized. Today, when people take a bath, they have the phone, the radio, the television. Are they really bathing? Mostly it is just the bathtub that is having a bath.

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Although Krishnamacharya came from a strict Indian tradition……

TK_1980_aged_91

T Krishnamacharya at 91

“Although Krishnamacharya came from a strict Indian tradition,
he liberated the restrictions.
He segregated his personal beliefs from his teaching
and his interest in the different texts on Yoga and Vedānta.

It isn’t necessary to be a Hindu to practice Yoga,
the Hindu text, the Brahma Sūtra refute Yoga.
In the Yoga Sūtra of Patañjali God is not emphasised.

Hindus have taken advantage of Yoga,
Brahmin rituals use Yoga breathing,
even if it is only symbolic and they use Mantra.

Krishnamacharya didn’t mix the different teachings,
he didn’t start a class with prayers when he worked with foreigners.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

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You should only take that food which you would offer to the person you revere most.

annam

“You should only take that food which you would offer to the person you revere most.”
Notes from my studies of the Dhyānamālika verse 11 with TKV Desikachar in Chennai 23rd December 2000

The Bhagavad Gītā is about confusion OF Dharma and the Yoga Sūtra……

tkv_tk_3_1980

“The Bhagavad Gītā is about confusion OF Dharma and
the Yoga Sūtra is about confusion AND Dharma.”
– TKV Desikachar

Haṭha Yoga is Prāṇāyāma.

jalandhara_bandha

Haṭha Yoga is Prāṇāyāma.”
– Śrī T Krishnamacharya

Yoga – To Link to myself. Hinduism – To Link to God.

yoga

Yoga – To Link to myself.
Hinduism – To Link to God.”
– TKV Desikachar introducing the Taittirīya Upaniṣad 2001

Yoga Makaranda – First Part

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Yoga Makaranda

– A Book on  Āsana Practice written by T Krishnamacharya in 1934.

Translated in 2006 from the 1938 Tamil Edition by Lakshmi and Nandini Ranganathan.
Offered as a freely distributable download.
Download the translation as an Open Source PDF