Yoga Sukshma website and future articles

Dear Yoga friends,

I have been writing a lot of articles on various aspects of yoga and linking it directly to the scriptures and ancient yogic texts. Many of you have told me that the references to the scriptures are very useful and has helped you understand the subtle aspects of yoga. Moving forward, I will consolidate the articles on the website I created, a year and a half ago, for this purpose, and use this facebook account to announce workshops and articles. You are welcome to connect with this account on facebook.

The yogic texts we know of today are a miniscule fraction of what was available many hundreds of years ago. They were destroyed by invasions and also by insects :). Many yogis gave up their lives trying to preserve them. Some Yogis fled to Tibet, to escape the invaders where the texts and the techniques were preserved in monasteries in the Tibetan language. Others fled to Southern India which was spared a little more from the invasions than was Northern India.

While invasions aren’t a major cause for concern, and certainly not insects, for preserving these ancient yogic techniques these days (though invasions are a concern for the world at large), it is dilution and misinterpretation by some teachers, from a sense of ego, that pose problems. My goal is for the website I maintain, to be a place where people can search and get authentic links to the scriptural interpretations as they had been interpreted for thousands of years.

If you would like me to email you whenever I hold a class (which is not often), you can send me your email address and I will include you in the mailing list.



4 class workshop- The subtler dimensions of asana practice

I would like to offer this 4 class series to go over the subtler dimensions of asana practice as described in the ancient texts. “When one works at the muscular level, there is linear progress; When one works at the Pranic level, there is exponential progress”.

There is a misconception about the purpose of Yoga Asanas. Many think that asanas work at the level of the muscles to get more flexibility and strength. No wonder, you hear people talk of yoga poses for getting chiseled abs and toned arms. None of the ancient yogic texts talk about these muscular aspects. The yogic texts talk about the benefits of asanas at the level of the Prana to heal various conditions of the body and the mind.

Please find more information about this series in the link above and let me know of your interest by registering there. If you have ideas on where to hold it please contact me.

The Atma is much more difficult to realize than Ishwara

One who studies the Yoga Sutras will quickly find that there are two recurring themes in the Yoga Sutras – the Purusha (i.e. the atma) and Meditation (especially Samadhi) to realize the Purusha. When I taught the Sutra Study Series, it became clear that people had a much easier time understanding the concept of Ishwara (the supreme almighty) than they had understanding what the atma was. This difficulty existed even in the olden days.

Patanjali uses many words for this indweller – Purusha (the lord of the place we call the body in 4.18), Dhristha (seer, in 1.3), Chiti-shaktih (the power of the Chitta, in 4.34), Apratisamkramaya (the unmoving, in 4.22), Swami (the owner, in 2.23) and Atma (that which cannot be divided, in 2.25).

Mindfulness (Smriti): Tapping into the body’s memory in asana practice

The reason why Buddha chose mindfulness of the Body (Kayena Anupachchinna) first over Vedana(feelings), mind-states and Dharma is that body is a rich storehouse of memory and unlike the mind reveals things as they are without coloring with its own stories.

When one is able to touch one of these sensitive areas, such as the cheeks as shown above in the asana called Garba Pindasana (the embryo pose), we are able to ground ourselves and access deep memories.

Read more below

Conclusion of the Sutra Study Series

Today we concluded the Yoga Sutra Study Series, which has been ongoing for the last 16 months. We concluded with the second of the 2 overview presentations to wrap up various concepts in the yoga sutras.
Please find the videos, slides and audio here.

If you have been following these presentations, I would love to hear your feedback to know how it can be improved for the future. So feel free to email me (my email address is on the home page of my website), even if it is just to connect as part of the yoga community.

I am planning a few other offerings connecting the scriptures to asana practice (since asanas are the part of yoga many of us are able to relate to with ease) to elucidate some of the seemingly cryptic messages in the yogic texts. I will send an announcement later.

An overview of the Yoga Sutras-2. This Sunday at 9AM PDT

This is a gentle reminder for this Sunday’s presentation at 9AM pacific time. Even if you did not attend the first part, you are welcome to join as this portion is self contained. We will cover the Ashtanga Yoga (8 limbs of yoga), the Siddhis (mystic powers from meditation) and Kaivalyam (Liberation).

Please find more info and register here.…/an-overview-of-the-yoga…

Please find the archives (slides and recordings -video and audio) here.

With this, we will conclude the Sutra Study Series which we had done over the last 15 months.

Recording of “An overview of the Yoga Sutras-1” from today

Today we completed the first of the Two overview presentations of the Yoga Sutras. Please find the slides and recordings here.

We will do the second presentation on Sunday Oct. 23 at 9AM PDT. Please register here if you are interested.

Some of the Sutras are very powerful and chanting them touches deep parts of the pysche. In fact, chanting is one way to get the Siddhis (Super powers) as described by Patanjali in sutra 4.1. If you are interested in chanting the sutras and understanding the meanings of the words, you can email me.

An overview of the Yoga Sutras-1: Sunday, Oct. 16 at 9am PDT

This is a gentle reminder for this Sunday’s (Oct. 16) Part 1 (of 2) Yoga Sutra Overview at 9AM PDT (pacific, California time). Studying summary sessions is a great way to know the big picture and essence of a topic and if you already have studied the topic, it is a great way to cement the ideas together. Please find more details and the slides of this presentation with goal of bringing the ancient scriptures to the world in a way it is easy for us lay people to understand, below: