What we observe today might not be the same tomorrow.

parinama

“What we observe today might not be the same tomorrow.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

The position of a particular posture in an Āsana practice will change……

“The position of a particular posture in an Āsana practice will change its effect
and will influence a particular part of the body.”
– From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

The practice of Yoga is like a mirror……

Āsana_31

“The practice of Yoga is like a mirror,
it helps us to know something about ourselves on a particular day,”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

By observing how the breath responds in Āsana……

“By observing how the breath responds in Āsana i.e.
Forward Bends.
Backward Bends.
Lying Postures.
Inverted Postures.
Twist Poses.
As to whether there is a better quality in either inhalation or exhalation,
one can decide how to proceed in Prāṇāyāma.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

In Āsana practice there is an expression of the state of the mind……

“In Āsana practice there is an expression of the state of the mind,
the practice can be a handle to hold the mind.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

There are simple postures for Prāṇāyāma and Dhyāna…….

Āsana_52

“There are simple postures for Prāṇāyāma and Dhyāna,
so that we can relax in the body and not be distracted by it.
There are challenging postures, to enable us to master our bodies and
for young people who will be engaged by the performance aspect of the posture.
There are also corrective postures.”
– From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

The lower abdomen is the dullest part of the spine……

apana

“The lower abdomen is the dullest part of the spine,
it is the starting point for the exhalation.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

So much happens in the spine with the breath……

maha_mudra

“So much happens in the spine with the breath,
we need to be aware of our breathing to have a maximum effect on the spine.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

It is usual to start a lesson be it, Chanting, Sūtra, Āsana with a prayer……

tkv_tk_3_1980

“It is usual to start a lesson be it, ChantingSūtra, Āsana, with a prayer.
A prayer is recited and repeated according to the study or purpose of the lesson,
to show respect for the subject.
When the student is familiar with the prayer they repeat it along with the teacher.
Focusing the study with a prayer helps to recall earlier study, lineage of repetition.
The student is given the meaning later.
After the lesson another prayer is said to offer thanks for the learning and for everybody.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

Krishnamacharya would introduce the Sūtra philosophy when……

sutra

Krishnamacharya would introduce the Sūtra philosophy
when students were resting during an Āsana practice,
because he felt that this was the only time they had available to them.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

How do we know that the Āsana has served its purpose?……

Āsana_24b

“How do we know that the Āsana  has served its purpose?”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

What interests you most in Āsana?……

TKV_5

Three questions given by Desikachar in a retreat in 1978

“1. What interests you most in Āsana?
2. What distinguishes Āsana from Prāṇāyāma?
3. What is hard to teach? Āsana and/or Prāṇāyāma, or something else?”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

The attention is within the posture if we concentrate on the breath.

“The attention is within the posture if we concentrate on the breath.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

A teacher needs to know a students body and state of mind…….

TKV Desikachar teaching at Gaunts House

“A teacher needs to know a students body and state of mind
to prepare a suitable practice,
take into account the particular students problems,
be they physical or psychological.”
From study notes with TKV Desikachar England 1992

One should practice and inquire into the effects of the practice…….

One should practice and inquire into the effects

“One should practice and
inquire into the effects of the practice
as well as the practice.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

We must discover why we practice.

TKV_5

“We must discover why we practice.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

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

prana

“The test for intelligent effort is the response of the breath.”
TKV Desikachar Switzerland 1978

We have also to ask ourselves the question……

TKV Desikachar teaching at Gaunts House

“We have also to ask ourselves the question:
What do we want our (teacher training) students to be equipped to do?
– Personal Practice.
– Training Work.
– Supervision.”
TKV Desikachar speaking with his senior Western students London 1998

We need to find a balance between the demand and the capacity……

“We need to find a balance between the demand and the capacity.
It needs careful reflection if we want this great teaching to continue.
If we don’t want it to become another museum we have to check our work and care for the future.
Many organisations with a vertical structure have collapsed.
Our structure must not be vertical.”
TKV Desikachar speaking with his senior Western students London 1998

I don’t think any system, even though it has all the possibilities……

TKV_France_1999

“I don’t think any system, even though it has all the possibilities,
has all the answers, for all of the people, for all of the time.”
TKV Desikachar speaking with his senior Western students London 1998

However first we should know where we are……

TKV_5

“However first we should know where we are.
We must examine ideas like we must start from where we actually are,
not where we want to be.
We must first recognise our actual state of mind.”
TKV Desikachar France 1983

Pain and suffering are linked……

duhkha_5

“Pain and suffering are linked,
but no more pain does not necessarily mean no more suffering.
There are people who have a little pain and a lot of suffering.
However, there are others who, despite a lot of pain, suffer very little.
What is it that can do this? ”
– TKV Desikachar from unedited manuscript for ‘What are We Seeking?’

Whether Yoga is Sādhana or Siddhi?

sadhana

“Whether Yoga is Sādhana or Siddhi?
Sādhana is the means to achieve something.
Siddhi is where something has happened.
For Siddhi to happen there has to be Sādhana, some preparation, some effort.
So how is it possible for something to be both Sādhana and Siddhi?
Each gain we make is a Siddhi.
Each Siddhi helps us to go further with Sādhana.”
TKV Desikachar France 1983

Any technique that can help to pacify suffering is wonderful……

“Any technique that can help to pacify suffering is wonderful,
but unfortunately only temporary.
Any technique that will develop clarity is precious,
since it contributes to resolving the cause of suffering .”
– TKV Desikachar from unedited manuscript for ‘What are We Seeking?’

Clarity is the ability to see clearly three things and to understand them….

Clarity is the ability to see clearly three things and to understand them:
the cause, the effect and that which knows both the cause and the effect.”
– TKV Desikachar from unedited manuscript for ‘What are We Seeking?’