If one takes care of the breath much more happens…

Criteria for the quality of Āsana

“If one takes care of the breath much more happens.
Perhaps some bad effects can be reduced.
But, because of its importance we can force it on people
and they find it difficult to understand the
mechanics and application, such as counting.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

One must be present in the action…

Criteria for the quality of Āsana

1. One must be present in the action.
2. Even with the eyes closed one must recognise the Āsana.
3. One should not suffer and want to be away from the Āsana.
4. It is the breath which defines the quality of the Āsana.
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

In the beginning the breath must be good…

Criteria for the quality of Āsana

1. In the beginning the breath must be good.
2. As one progresses the breath must still be good,
but the Āsana is better than it was.
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

In other words, begin your practice from where you are…

Principles behind the Practice of Āsana

In other words:
Begin your practice from where you are.
Finish your practice where you are going.
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

Do not fight yourself…

Principles behind the Practice of Āsana

1. Do not fight yourself.
2. Do not take your body for granted.
3. We must consider and relate age and interest.
4. Start with something normal or neutral.
5. Let the first part of the practice be an investigation into how you feel.
6. Have some aim in your practice.
7. Let the goal also be that you have enough time to come back to a normal body posture.
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

The test for intelligent effort is the response of the breath…

Principles behind the Practice of Āsana

“The test for intelligent effort
is the response of the breath.
Therefore, the technique is
proper and intelligent effort
and the response of the
breath to that effort.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

We investigate the reaction of the effort on the breath…

Principles behind the Practice of Āsana

“We investigate the reaction
of the effort on the breath.
The sound and speed of the
breath expresses the effort.
Therefore, in Āsana, there
is a relationship between
the effort and the breath.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

With step by step intelligent application…

Principles behind the Practice of Āsana

“With step by step
intelligent application,
less effort is required.
In other words, effort
that will reduce effort.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

In technique, as stated by Patañjali, we must apply effort…

Principles behind the Practice of Āsana

“In technique, as stated by Patañjali,
we must apply effort, but not force.
That effort must be intelligent.
The difference in effort and
force can cause a reaction.
Perhaps more reaction than action?”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

People come to study Yoga for many reasons……

Of the Four Aspects of the Breath which is more important

“People come to study Yoga for many reasons,
however they fall into two groups.
They come to learn or study, or they come
to us for support rather than to study.
So the Yoga we offer to the person
who is inquiring is not the Yoga we
offer to the person seeking protection.
Therefore one can give the wrong advice
to the right person and vice versa.
This can do more harm than if the
person had not come. The intention
must be right, as must be the execution.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

Meditation must elevate the mind…

dhyana

Meditation must elevate the mind.
That is its basic purpose, to be where I was not.
This involves an ascent of the individual’s mind.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter Three verse 5

TKV Desikachar Yoga Sūtra Study Quotes Collected and Collated
T Krishnamacharya Yoga Sūtra Study Quotes Collected and Collated

Stress or tension, however, has its origin in the attitudes to our actions….

TKV Desikachar teaching at Gaunts House

“Stress or tension, however,
has its origin in the attitudes to our actions.
There are two attitudes in particular that are the cause of stress.
These are:
Aham and Mama.
Aham or Ahaṃkāra is the attitude “I am the doer”
and Mama or Mamakara is the attitude “it is for me”.
These two factors most surely produce Udvega.
The moment the attitude is one of NaMama
– ‘not by me’, ‘not for me’,  there cannot be any stress.
A person who has total faith in God cannot
have stress and will not exhibit the Udvega.”
 Yoga Sūtra on Stress – An interview with TKV Desikachar

Notes from a lecture by TKV Desikachar – ‘Is Veda a Religion?’

The Brahma Sūtra is the source of Hinduism or Hindu Philosophy or Vedānta.

It acknowledges the Veda as the source of its teachings,
hence the term Vedānta, within which there are three main streams:

1. People who believe in One
(Advaita or school of non-dualism advocated by Śaṅkara)

2. People who believe in One with certain characteristics
(Viśiṣṭādvaita or school of qualified non-dualism advocated by Rāmānuja)

3. People who believe in Two and they cannot be reconnected
(Dvaita or school of dualism advocated by Madhva)

So Vedānta is one product of the Veda but their are five more

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The breath should be slow, smooth and powerful…

“The breath should be slow, smooth and powerful.
It should be held for 1”-2” after the inhale to prevent contraction.
Retention is also the extension of the hold after the exhale
and it is carried out to retain the state of contraction.
It is necessary to complete an exhale otherwise the inhale will get shorter.
Contraction of the stomach after the exhale will make it more effective.”
– TKV Desikachar England 1992

Using the breath in Āsana makes the Āsana adaptable…

“Using the breath in Āsana
makes the Āsana adaptable.
For example, by varying the
breath we can vary the effect.”
– TKV Desikachar England 1992

The breath presents different possibilities in Āsana…

“The breath presents different possibilities in Āsana.
For example, there can be a refinement of the
posture through developing the breath.”
– TKV Desikachar England 1992

The breath involves the spine…

“The breath involves the spine,
and it brings out changes in
the most vital part of the body.”
– TKV Desikachar England 1992

The Āsana are presented in Vinyāsa Krama, the way it was…

“The Āsana are presented in
Vinyāsa Krama, the way it was
taught to children in the Yoga Śāla.
This should not create the impression
that T Krishnamacharya taught
in this manner to everyone.”
– TKV Desikachar Introduction to Yoga Makaranda

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A human being is made up of the three Guṇa: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas…

“A human being is made up of the three Guṇa:
Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.
All three are important and have their respective roles.
The role of the Rajas Guṇa is to initiate action.
Every function of the body and action of the person is
because of the operation of the Rajas Guṇa.
Even breathing requires the action of the Rajas Guṇa.
In all his teachings, my father would always insist on action.
As long as a person is alive, the three Guṇa will exist in his system
thereby making action not only necessary but inevitable.”

– Yoga Sūtra on Stress – An interview with TKV Desikachar

In the Yogavallī, T Krishnamacharya’s commentary on the Yoga Sūtra…

sraddha

“In the Yogavallī, T Krishnamacharya’s commentary on the Yoga Sūtra,
Śraddhā has been seen in a different, very interesting way.
In it, he has said that Śraddhā is a symbol for a special meditation
and he calls this meditation, Ahaṃ Graha Upāsana.
Ahaṃ is the I, Graha is to grasp and Upāsana is to stay near.
Where a person wants to grasp the true nature of the I,
it is called Ahaṃ Graha Upāsana.”
– TKV Desikachar on Yoga Sūtra Chapter One verse 20

T Krishnamacharya Yoga Sūtra Study Quotes Collected and Collated
TKV Desikachar Yoga Sūtra Study Quotes Collected and Collated