This is our repository of work-in-progress useful resources.
These resources are not confined to Iyengar Yoga, or to the practice of asanas. They are a reflection of our personal interests, which come out of a practice of yoga.
Morning Music Playlist
Skill ( yukti), the control/ power(shakti), have to be balanced by devotion (bhakti) to lead towards liberation (mukti)
Across all cultures and all times, devotees have used the power of sound to connect with their object of devotion – sound corresponds to the most subtle of elements – Ether.
The tracks in this selection are mostly compositions of devotional poets – known by different names in different cultures – Bhakti, Sufi…
Many of them are rendered by the most renowned of the Indian classical maestros. While the beauty of the tunes as well as the devotion implicit in it cannot escape any listener, the compositions themselves are laden with rich and layered words of wisdom from the masters. We are working on gathering the meanings of some of these lyrics. watch this space!
Personal favorite – Kabir compositions by Kumar Gandharva – the meeting of two men, five centuries apart.
The playlist is on Spotify, the following link:
Mr. Iyengar left behind a wealth of material to further the study of yoga. A brief selection of books written by him can be found here
In addition, there is now abundance of material available for the curious and the enthusiastic practitioner.
Invocation to Sage Patanjali
We say this invocation at the beginning of the class. Includes english transliteration, meaning, and a commentary by Geetaji on the significance of the invocation.
Samadhi – BKS Iyengar
Beautiful video from 1977 of Mr Iyengar practicing and teaching. Scratchy but awe inspiring – especially from the 10th minute of Mr. Iyengar practicing with and instructing a small group of practitioners. Samadhi was made by the Film and Television Institute of India and won a Silver Lotus. Though original citations mention 22 mins., this video is only about 14 mins long.
Iyengar: The Man, Yoga, and the Student’s Journey
This is a feature-length documentary film about Mr. B.K.S. Iyengar’s practice, life and influence. Made and guided by film makers who are also yoga practitioners, this is an inspiring film for all practitioners of the subject.
The film is available for download on itunes.
Addiction Recovery and Yoga
Feature documentary on how people, with serious addiction problems, have used yoga as part of their recovery in 12 step programs, to a new life of health and emotional stability.
Directed by Lindsey Clennell
runtime: 85 mins
watch it free at the following link:
The Practice of Women During the Whole Month
lecture given by Dr Geeta S. Iyengar in Poland during her visit to Europe in 2002. Published by the Iyengar Yoga National Association of the United States (IYNAUS). With her usual generosity and care, Geetaji has edited and added to the lecture for its publication. Succinctly and clearly she explains how women should adjust their practice to the hormonal changes of the menstrual cycle. All teachers, men and women, and all female practitioners will find this an invaluable source of knowledge and wisdom which will enhance their practice and understanding of the marvellous and vast subject of Yoga
(the practice room conducts periodic workshops on adapting the practice of yoga to womens monthly hormonal cycle)
BKS Iyengar on Pranayama
As with asana, Mr Iyengar’s approach to pranayama was revolutionary – removing the veils of mystery and misinformation, and making this subject available to the average practitioner. Following the clear direction given by Patanjali in the yoga sutras, pranayama is introduced only once a level of proficiency is reached in the practice of asanas. Pranayama is introduced, gradually and safely, to be incorporated in the personal practice of the student in an intelligent manner.
Mr. Iyengar has left behind a wealth of information on pranayama, including the seminal book ‘Light on Pranayama’ – a must-have resource for anyone interested in unravelling the deeper and subtler workings of the breath.
We transcribed this brief 12 minute informal talk given by Guruji on pranayama because it explains the the profound subject with such matter of fact elegance.
The 108 names of Patanjali
The most subtle of the five great elements (pancha mahabhuta) is ether (akasha). And sound (Sabda) is the subtle characteristic of ether.
The sanskrit language – passed on orally for centuries before being transcribed into written text – harnesses the power of sound. For us as students of yoga, it is important to get familiar with the sounds of sanskrit – it is the language in which Patanjali composed the yoga sutras. Even if the meanings of the words are not accessible to us, and we are working with translations of the text, being able to say the sutras out aloud has its own joy.
Here is an entry into exploring the sounds of sanskrit – through the 108 names of Patanjali – an endeavour worthy in itself.
The translation and transliteration are by Siddhartha Krishna, a practitioner of yoga, and a student of vedanta and sanskrit from a very young age.