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TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners

TSYP provide yoga tuition, training and therapy in the lineage of Krishnamacharya and TKV Desikachar.We are an autonomous organisation in the UK and maintain living links with the teachings through our relationship with the Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram in Chennai.
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners2 days ago
Should we face East when we practice? Maybe. It depends, of course on the person, the purpose and the location, among other possible factors.

Paścimatāna means something along the lines of: "to stretch and extend the West". This might be code for the stretching the back parts of the body. Yoga postures were traditionally performed in the early morning as the Sun was coming into view from the East. Of course, for some of us facing East to practise means looking at an uninspiring wall or busy road, while in another direction there might be a tree, whose energy might be more uplifting.

When practising prāṇāyāma, some face North because the right nostril (the Sun nāḍī) would then be in the East.

It many ways these details matter little. What does matter is staying linked to some notion of the concept and meaning of Yoga. TKV Desikachar offered several meanings, one of which was that the word yoga is "to attain what was previously unattainable". And this definition implies a degree of understanding that direction is an important consideration for yoga practice.

Enjoy your practice!

Photo by Honey Yanibel Minaya Cruz on Unsplash & quotation is from Heart of Yoga by TKV Desikachar p. 5
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners1 week ago
Truth (satyam in Sanskrit), an idea and virtue that appears under constant attack these days, is one aspect essential for living in harmony with others (yama). It's the second of Patañjali's yama-s. It can be thought of as one's thoughts and words being closely aligned to fact.

Facts are, according to the Yoga Sūtra-s, known through the processes of sense perception, inference (logic) and testimony. And these three combine to form one of the five citta vṛtti-s (activities of the mind): pramāṇa or Right Knowledge.

In the West we have a great tradition in logic that goes back to the ancient Greeks. Sadly, most of us are unaware of it. This makes us susceptible to untruth. We can improve Right Knowledge by paying closer attention to sense perception, logic and reliable testimony.

For instance, we often find ourselves being offered the logical fallacy known as the False Dilemma or False Dichotomy, among other names. A logical fallacy is a type of incorrect reasoning that can give rise to Wrong Knowledge (viparyaya), another of the five citta vṛtti-s.

We’ve all heard the False Dilemma fallacy many times before. We are given only two options, one worse than the other. It is then said or implied that we must select the option that is the lesser evil. What's left out are other potential options. For instance, we either go to war or we appear weak. Other options to war or seeming weak actually exist.

Better than playing I-spy, is learning a few common logical fallacies and seeing if you can spot them being used (often unintentionally, at least I hope).

Photo by Harry Cunningham on Unsplash
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners
Conversation with TKV Desikachar (1995)
Master yoga teacher TKV Desikachar (1938-2016) answers questions about yoga. Recorded in Auckland, New Zealand, November 1995 Interviewer: Diane Renker Execu...
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TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners updated their profile picture.3 weeks ago
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners4 weeks ago
Peace on Earth, good will toward all ...

... and a heartfelt thank you to everyone who has supported the TSYP during 2019 and intends to continue to support the transmission of the yoga teachings of TKV Desikachar and his father, T Krishnamacharya, in 2020 as students and teachers.

“The moon, whose rays are auspicious for the gathering of medicinal herbs, is the god of herbs, whilst the light of the sun gets to the bottom of all impurities. This is why we recite Mantra to these two stars, during the preparation of Āyurveda remedies.”

– T Krishnamacharya

Photo by Matt Nelson on Unsplash | Quotation from www.yogastudies.org
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners
TSYP:The Society of Yoga Practitioners1 month ago
In "What are we Seeking?", a book by TKV Desikachar (with Martyn Neal), there are a number of questions, including:

"Do we respect and care for what we encounter in life?" [page 93]

Questions like this can follow us around for days on end.

In another book: "Embodying the Yoga Sūtra", Ranju Roy and David Charlton suggest [page 211] that when living with other beings, we might consider establishing the basis for the relationship by first allowing space for other beings to be as they are. This is ahiṃsā, which is often translated as nonviolence (see also Yoga Sūtra-s II.30ff).

George Orwell describes in his 1933 autobiographical book: "Down and Out in Paris and London" many dysfunctional and unlucky relationships.

It can seem odd that, despite many advances in our economy and society, little appears to have changed with respect to the essential quality of relationships Then compared to Now.

The default position with regards to relationship - whether with ourselves, other people, animals and plants, this moment or the next, appears to be rooted in hiṃsā, the opposite of ahiṃsā.

In the Heart of Yoga, TKV Desikachar tells us [page 98] that "ahiṃsā is more than just lack of violence. It means kindness, friendliness, and thoughtful consideration of other people and things." It does not necessarily mean that "we should not eat meat or fish or that we should not defend ourselves" or others. We should apply the concept of ahiṃsā with consideration and skill. It makes for a challenging yoga practice, to be sure.

Photo by Matt Collamer on Unsplash