Vinyāsa Woes

Practitioners of Aṣtānga Vinyāsa Yoga are serious folks. Aṣtānga (not to be confused with the eight limbs mentioned in Yoga Sūtras) is the Crossfit equivalent of the modern Yoga scene.

One of the distinguishing features of this style is its strict adherence to specified Vinyāsas for each Āsana or posture in the practice sequence.

Anything cultish, as history shows, is breeding ground for humour! So I have to do my part here. Continue reading

How Lululemon (Accidentally) Saved the World!

The goal of classical yoga is Kaivalyam or liberation. This is a state of cessation of mental activities brought about by practice of supreme renunciation. Such a liberated Yogi is called Jivan-Mukta, which means “liberated yet alive”. A glorious form of the living dead! Perhaps it is just not a coincidence that the words Zombie and Yogi rhyme!

Tens of millions of people all over the world now practice Yoga and this number is growing real fast. What if the world is run over by millions of Jivan-muktas? Can you imagine the Yogi Apocalypse we will face?

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pratipakṣa bhāvanam

Harbouring contrary thoughts (pratipakṣa bhāvanam) is a strategy suggested by Patanjali when faced with temptations or difficulties in practicing the codes of personal conduct (Yama and Niyama). This is more subtle than simply thinking positive thoughts as contrary thoughts need not only be positive. Continue reading

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