The Viniyoga of Āsana Practice & Practice Theory Progressive Modules

The Viniyoga of Āsana Modular Workshop and Courses
– Empower your Practice Exploring how to Customise your Personal Āsana Practice

This Post introduces the Art of the Application of Āsana Modular Workshop and Courses Student Study Programme. As the student progresses through the interlinked and developmental Modules they will experience an in-depth learning in all areas of Āsana practice techniques and Āsana study theory.

Together these Modules will initiate and empower the student into the arts of learning to skilfully work with the principles that underpin creating and sustaining a personalised Āsana practice. The outcome will be the ability, through skilful practice planning, to independently and intelligently choose, adapt and ultimately self-develop and self-refine our personal Āsana Sādhana.

“Another important aspect is that the masters taught us to move from a deeper source,
not just from muscles and joints.”
– TKV Desikachar

The Viniyoga of Āsana Modular Programme is offered as a:

read more

The Practice Planning Interrelationship between Āsana, Mudrā, Prāṇāyāma and Dhyānam

One of the essences in Krishnamacharya’s and Desikachar’s teaching focused on the developmental and progressive integration of the different aspects of ĀsanaMudrā, Prāṇāyāma and Dhyānam into a single constantly evolving organism.

Thus in honouring the Paramparā it is not possible for me to separate these four practice components into four completely disconnected study topics to be learnt in any random order.

The way I was taught was that a knowledge of the practice and planning principles within Āsana are necessary to appreciate the practice and planning principles within Mudrā.

read more

108 Postural Practice Pointers – 25 – Forward Bending and the Role of the Arms

Postural Pointer 25 – Forward Bending and the Role of the Arms

When moving out of Paścimatāna Āsana such as Uttānāsana.
Focus on the arms bringing the back up.
Rather than the back bringing the arms up.

Link to Series: 108 Postural Practice Pointers

The obstacle is also called Kuṇḍalinī because it looks like an earring……

“The obstacle is also called Kuṇḍalinī because it looks like an earring
worn by women in the olden days and Kuṇḍali means ‘earring’.
It is also called Śakti because its power is so great that
it is able to block the flow of Prāṇa into the Suṣumṇā.
We must note that it is Prāṇa that is eventually
supposed to go into the Suṣumṇā.
Many books describe that which goes up as Kuṇḍalinī.
Kuṇḍalinī does not go up.
Suṣumṇā is like a conductor through which energy flows.
This energy is the same energy that is always present, Prāṇa.”
TKV Desikachar Religiousness in Yoga
‘Various Approaches to Yoga’
Chapter Seventeen Page 243-244

In observing, we must remember a few more things……

“In observing, we must remember a few more things:

When we are not able to see something,
It is either because something else is more obvious,
or because it is too close to us.
(Sāṃkhya Kārikā of Īśvara Kṛṣṇa Āryā Seven)

We can only observe when there is an inclination to do so.
(Yoga Sūtra Chapter Four verse 17)

Because of our own memories, backgrounds, cultures, etc.
Each person looks at the same problem differently,
which may cause problems.
(Yoga Sūtra Chapter Four verse 15)

We must respect time and change,
although the tendency nowadays is otherwise.
We must wait and observe more than once
so as not to be trapped by the fact
that things appear like this one day
and like that another day.”

TKV Desikachar on Sāṃkhya and Yoga

108 Sūtra Study Pointers – 57 – The experience known as Sthira Sukha Āsana……

The experience known as Sthira Sukham Āsanam,
described in Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 46,
arises from melding the mastery of outer stillness in the world,
described as Prayatna Śaithilya, or relaxation of continued effort,
with the mystery of inner openness to the beyond,
described as Ananta Samāpatti, or unity in the infinite.
– Reflections on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Two verse 47

Link to Series: 108 Sutra Study Pointers

Sometimes Yoga is called Darśana Vijñāna……

“Sometimes Yoga is called Darśana Vijñāna.
Vijñāna means ‘to know things in detail,
which involves also the techniques, the process of knowing, etc’.
It mean that not only we see things, we also know how to apply.

Darśana means ‘mirror, view, projection;
showing something that we cannot normally see.’
For instance, the Six Darśana in Indian philosophy
are six ways of seeing things.

Darśana in Yoga is divided into two classes:

read more

In Samādhi there is an understanding……

samadhi

“In Samādhi there is an understanding.
Something not based on your memories,
something that transcends your memories.
Prajña comes only in Samādhi.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 20

The Art of Gītā Scripture Module One Workshop May 23/24th 2020 – 2 Places Available

srimad_bhagavad_gita

Follow this link for details of Online Personalised Learning Art of Gītā Scripture Study options

The Art of Gītā Scripture Workshop Module One
Search your Heart in The Quest for Relationship with the Beyond

The Art of Gītā Scripture – Module One Personal Sādhana Workshop is limited to a maximum of five students to allow for a personalised approach and in-depth transmission between teacher and student. It introduces the student to a weekend workshop on the primary principles and teachings from T Krishnamacharya and TKV Desikachar on the Bhagavad Gītā.

Based in the Cotswolds, it is a 2 day workshop open to all except complete beginners and offers an opportunity for a student from any Yoga background or style to have an in-depth introduction to the Bhagavad Gītā, either for personal development or, if relevant, professional skills.

Upcoming Dates

read more

Samādhi is a state of mind and an understanding that arises from it.

samadhi

Samādhi is a state of mind and an
understanding that arises from it.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 18

Learning Support for Chanting the Long Version of Mā Aham

This day, for so long TKV Desikachar‘s birthday, is the third since his passing in August 2016.
In memoriam, as an offering of respect and fond remembrance, is a chant he composed for Western students as a condensed highlighting of the key concepts within the inquiry into the Pañca Maya, contained within Chapter Three of Taittirīya Upaniṣad known as the Bhṛguvallī.

Listed below are the links to both a text file and a sound file from my personal library of recordings with TKV Desikachar. This particular one is recorded with one of his senior chant students, Sujaya Sridhar.

View or Download the Long Version of Mā Aham as a PDF with notations
Listen or Download the Long Version of Mā Aham as an MP3 Sound File

It is not enough to realise that there is somewhere to go……

sraddha

“It is not enough to realise that there is somewhere to go,
you must also be really interested in taking the step.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 20

Some people describe that Kuṇḍalinī  goes through the Suṣumṇā……

Question to T Krishnamacharya –

Q: Some people describe that Kuṇḍalinī
goes through the Suṣumṇā
to the Sahasrāra.
Is this correct?
A: No, it is the Prāṇa Vāyu that
moves through the Suṣumṇā.
Śrī Krishnamacharya – The Pūrnācārya
– published by the KYM in 1997

108 Yoga Study Path Pointers – 28 – What is important is the refinement of one’s practice repertoire……

What is important is the refinement of one’s
practice and study repertoire, rather than
just the enlargement of one’s repertoire,
whether it’s more Āsana, Chants or Texts.
Plus, the more time you spend on enlarging,
the less time you have to spend on refining.

Link to Series: 108 Yoga Study Path Pointers

A teacher who knows us very well might give us a Mantra……

“A teacher who knows us very well might give us a Mantra
which has a particular connotation because of the way it has been arranged.
It that Mantra is repeated in the way it has been instructed,
if we are aware of the meaning and if perhaps we want to use a particular image,
Mantra Yoga brings about the same effect as Jñāna Yoga or Bhakti Yoga.”
TKV Desikachar Religiousness in Yoga
‘Various Approaches to Yoga’
Chapter Seventeen Page 240

Jñāna Yoga is where we hear or read somebody’s words……

Jñāna Yoga is where we
hear or read somebody’s words,
delve into them deeply,
discuss them with people,
engage in reflection,
until finally all doubts are cleared.
We see the truth,
we merge with the truth,
and that is Jñāna.”
TKV Desikachar Religiousness in Yoga
‘Various Approaches to Yoga’
Chapter Seventeen Page 239

The seeds from Krishnamacharya’s and Desikachar’s teachings on Haṭha Yoga……

The seeds from Krishnamacharya’s and Desikachar’s teachings on Haṭha Yoga are best rooted through a personal home practice by:

Firstly –

By prioritising the twin aspects within a joint commitment to learn both Haṭha Yoga practice techniques and Haṭha Yoga practice theory. The intended outcome of this two pronged approach is engaging in learning how to practice, rather than just learning what to practice.

“Yoga must be adapted to an individuals needs,
expectations and possibilities,
rather than adapting an individuals needs,

expectations and possibilities to Yoga.”

This means learning to engage with the process of what it means to have a personal Yoga practice alongside engaging learning to study the theory of the component principles that underpin what constitutes creating and sustaining a personalised Yoga practice.

“Some are satisfied with what Āsana brings them.
Others are curious as to where Āsana can take them.”

These twin aspects of the arts of Yoga practice techniques and Yoga practice theory support our being able to independently and intelligently choose, adapt and ultimately self-develop and self-refine our personal Yoga Sādhana.

read more

Deepening our relationship with Prāṇāyāma deepens our relationship with Āsana……

One aspect of Yoga Sādhana is that it is ultimately about a maturing of our relationship with all aspects of on the mat (and seat) Yoga practice, rather than just a maturing of our Āsana practice.

“Are we confusing the maturation of our Āsana practice
with the maturation of our Yoga practice?”

This is especially relevant if we consider these various aspects as existing within a holarchy. This implies that one “level”, here Āsana; whilst being the foundation, technical reference point, verification and ladder for the next “level”, here Prāṇāyāma; also remains interdependent with it. Thus Āsana is correspondingly influenced by the insights that arise from Prāṇāyāma as we work towards a transition from Bāhya Aṅga Sādhana towards Antar Aṅga Sādhana.

“Āsana is the primary choice to work the breath.
Prāṇāyāma is the primary choice to refine the breath.”

For example, fully embracing Prāṇāyāma as a Sādhana is initially founded on the core principles that underpin an intelligent relationship with Āsana. This foundation helps to seed insights that are unique to Prāṇāyāma practice. These insights in turn both deepen our relationship with Prāṇāyāma as well as refreshing and further deepening our relationship with Āsana.

read more

Meditation is not a technique, it is a journey.

‎”Meditation is not a technique,
it is a journey.”
– TKV Desikachar 1998

If you are using something more complex, say Gāyatrī Mantra……

Gāyatrī

“The number of times you say OM on inhalation, holding the breath,
and exhalation is influenced by the length of the breath.
We cannot fix the number of recitations on the basis of the Praṇava itself.
We can only fix it on the basis of a person’s capacity of breath.
If you are simply using OM, it can go with almost any ratio.
If you are using something more complex, say Gāyatrī Mantra,
it is very long and has different structures so there are regulations on
how many times you say it when you inhale, hold the breath, and exhale,
and in what part of the Mantra you can break, etc.”
TKV Desikachar Religiousness in Yoga
‘Various Approaches to Yoga’
Chapter Seventeen Page 238-239