When I first became aware of and interested in Yoga in my youth, it was obvious that what I saw of it, Yogis, Yoginis, Sadhus, teachings etc were all part of a truly ancient tradition and lineage. This certainly conveyed insights, knowledge, experience and realizations that were both timeless and continually of value to humanity. However over the years, much of what I have encountered as modern Yoga seems much distanced from both it’s heritage, authenticity and it’s value to us. There is endless examples of Yoga being branded as “Bobs” Yoga, or Yoga mixed in with every phenomena you can think of Heavy Metal Yoga, Yoga and Coffee, you name it. These cases illustrate how it has been moulded and sculpted to make it fit in with the expectations or tastes of a target audience or to make it more marketable. This and even the content of many practices and styles of teaching are bound to make it difficult for us to discern the “Yoga” in modern Yoga!
I certainly consider myself very fortunate to have encountered teachers, other practitioners and lineages who have put the essence of Yoga above marketing and profits. As the global Yoga industry(for it is truly on that level now) continues to grow, we are also fortunate to have numerous practitioners and academics who are determined to clarify the core, purpose and intent of many practices and teachings. Individuals such as Jim Mallinson and Mark Singleton have done much to shine a light on where our contemporary practices come from. In my own study, practice and teaching I’ve also been enthusiastic to both explore this as well as present and teach yoga both accurately and so as to be appropriate for those who encounter it.
Inspired by this, studies with Mark Whitwell last year, recent workshops that myself and Wendy have delivered, I’m teaching a workshop in Santosha Yoga Studio, Lisburn on Saturday the 4th of August to both investigate the theory and practices of Medieval texts and traditions that have filtered through to the modern day especially via the Krishnamacharya lineage. So if your curious about the roots of modern practices or the antiquity of your practice, have a look at the link below.