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

read more

Yoga Tārāvalī

The Yoga Tārāvalī is a source often quoted within Aṣṭāṅga Yoga Communities because of the adoption of its opening verse (along with one of the traditional opening prayers to Patañjali) as their opening prayer dedications.

However it is a full text in itself, has 29 verses in total and is primarily a teaching on Haṭha Yoga. It was one of the Haṭha texts taught by T Krishnamacharya to TKV Desikachar, along with the more popular medieval Haṭha Yoga Pradīpikā and other lesser known Haṭha texts such as the Yoga Yājñavalkhya.

read more

Learning Support for Chanting the Yoga Tārāvalī

Learning Support for Chanting the Yoga Tārāvalī. From my personal library of recordings from my studies with my teacher TKV Desikachar.

To Download or Listen
To Download the Chant Sheet with Romanised Saṃskṛta

T Krishnamacharya Cikitsā Practice excerpt aged 96

A short clip extracted from a video of T Krishnamacharya practising as part of his Yoga Cikitsā or Yoga therapeutics when recovering from a hip fracture from a fall in 1984 when aged 96. Apologies for the quality, the original cassette is a bit flakey.

read more

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

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

read more

The model of the Nāḍī and Cakra can never help to explain……

anahata

The human energetic system is very complex and it is even harder to understand the mind, the structure, the limitations and possibilities, the relationship with the body and vice versa.

On the other hand, we can easily say to someone that there are seven Cakra, that they are like this or that, that there are found here or there in the body etc in all simplicity. But we must be aware if we do that we haven’t really said anything, and the person will not be any the wiser.

The risk of confusion is even greater when we try to show the model of the Cakra scientifically, or to give spiritual characteristics some sort of scientific basis. Some try to do this, by linking Mūladhāra with the kidneys or the sacral plexus, or Viśuddhi with the thyroid, etc.

read more

Learning Support for Chanting Closing Śānti Pataḥ – Śaṃ No Mitra

mantra

Learning Support for Chanting the Closing Śānti Pataḥ for Taittirīya Upaniṣad Chapter 1 verse 12
– Śaṃ No Mitra
From my personal library of recordings from my studies with my teacher TKV Desikachar recorded by one of his senior chant students Sujaya Sridhar.
To Download or Listen
To Download the Chant Sheet with Romanised Saṃskṛta and Notations

Learning Support for Chanting Opening Śānti Pataḥ – Śaṃ No Mitra

mantra

Learning Support for Chanting the Opening Śānti Pataḥ for Taittirīya Upaniṣad Chapter 1 verse 1
– Śaṃ No Mitra
From my personal library of recordings from my studies with my teacher TKV Desikachar recorded by one of his senior chant students Sujaya Sridhar.
To Download or Listen
To Download the Chant Sheet with Romanised Saṃskṛta and Notations

T Krishnamacharya and his Yoga – An evolution 1920’s – 1989

TK_teaching_stages_evolutionIn 2000 TKV Desikachar presented teachings around the evolution of T Krishnamacharya’s Yoga teaching.
The above summary is available as a Downloadable PDF.

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.

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.

read more

Learning Support for Chanting the Śuci Mantra or Prāṇa Apāna – Normal speed

mantra

Taken from the Taittirīya Upaniṣad Chapter Four verses 67-77, this Mantra was one of T Krishnamacharya’s personal favourites.
Sometimes known as an Ārogya Mantra or Mantra for Health, Krishnamacharya referred to it as the Śuci Mantra or Mantra for Purification and as such should be recited daily as part of our personal Sādhana.
According to Krishnamacharya the verses in the Śuci Mantra describe all the aspects of the human system, which when listed total 108.
The download link is for a normal speed version of the Śuci Mantra and is from my personal library of recordings from my studies with my teacher TKV Desikachar and he recorded it for me with one of his senior chant students Sujaya Sridhar.
To Download the Chant Sheet with Romanised Saṃskṛta, translation and Chant Notation

Learning Support for Chanting the Śuci Mantra or Prāṇa Apāna – Slow speed

mantra

Taken from the Taittirīya Upaniṣad Chapter 4 verse 67-77, this Mantra was one of T Krishnamacharya’s personal favourites.
Sometimes known as an Ārogya Mantra or Mantra for Health, Krishnamacharya referred to it as the Śuci Mantra or Mantra for Purification and as such should be recited daily as part of our personal Sādhana.
According to Krishnamacharya the verses in the Śuci Mantra describe all the aspects of the human system, which when listed total 108.
The download link is for a slower speed (to help with learning) version of the Śuci Mantra and is from my personal library of recordings from my studies with my teacher TKV Desikachar and he recorded it for me with one of his senior chant students Sujaya Sridhar.
To Download the Chant Sheet with Romanised Saṃskṛta, translation and Chant Notation

Āsana demonstration from Yogāsanagalu by T Krishnamacharya

A selection of Āsana from the book Yogāsanagalu by written by T Krishnamacharya in 1941.
The third edition, published in 1972, contained Āsana demonstration pictures of Krishnamacharya then aged 84.
Featured in this post are examples of Seated Āsana, click to enlarge image or view as a slide show:

read more

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

Learning Support for Chanting the Gītārtha Saṃgraha of Śrī Yāmunācārya

Shri Yamunacharya

 Śrī Yāmuna was the grandson of the 9th century sage Śrī Nāthamuni
and a forebear of T Krishnamacharya.
His 32 verse commentary on the Bhagavad Gītā is called the Gītārtha Saṃgraha.
It is seen as one of the most elegant and succinct available.
From my personal library of recordings of my teacher.
To Download or Listen
To Download the Chant Sheet with Romanised Saṃskṛta

Learning Support for Chanting Dhyānaṃ Ślokam for Patañjali

parampara
From my personal library of recordings of my teacher.
To Download or Listen
To Download the Chant Sheet with Romanised Saṃskṛta and Chant Notation
To View or Download translations of the prayers that comprise the Dhyānaṃ Ślokam for Patañjali.

The Cakra are points of concentration for the mind.

anahata

“The Cakra are points of concentration for the mind.”
– ‘Concerning the Cakra’ by TKV Desikachar

Simple Yoga Practice from Yoga For Every Body by Paul Harvey

pk_RD_sequence
Came across this simple beginners practice plan from the book ‘Yoga For Every Body’, published in 2002.
Although well out of print used copies can be had from Amazon in the US or UK at budget prices.
2014 will also see chapters from the book published as support articles for Practitioners.
Download Practice as a PDF.

read more