Day 68

Style: Yin
Teacher: Mark Laham (DVD)
Studio: Home Practice

The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali. Tomorrow is the next round of my teacher training, and I realized I've been slacking on my homework. We were instructed to practice meditation, which I've been making a point of doing, and read book 2 of the Yoga sūtras, which I have yet to do. In the early Friday afternoon I make my way to Singing Pebbles and pick up a few books from the reading list. Opening the first page of Patañjali's Yoga Sūtra, I realize there is something familiar about it. Then it dawns on me: I've read these before! During the first challenge I read a book by the modern-day mystic Osho called Yoga: The Science of the Soul, in which he explains the different sūtras one by one. There are many books about Patañjali's sūtras. Written nearly two millennia ago, the sūtras themselves are always the same - it's the commentary that changes. Osho referred to Patañjali as an early "scientist of the soul", sharing his insights on the writings and breaking down the meaning behind the words. The book I just picked up is written by Chip Hartranft, and as I make my way through the introduction and into the first chapter, I'm greeted with fresh language that is engaging and easy to read. The ancient sūtras themselves are a collection of 196 compact observations on the nature of consciousness and liberation, and are considered to be the foundation of yoga itself. The deeper I delve into the world of yoga, the more I fall in love with it. The writings of Patañjali are the absolute perfect place to begin the study of yoga, and I'm drawn in as I turn page after page, sitting in my living room by the fire as the logs crackle and burn, providing rustic background music. In the poetic words of B.K.S Iyengar,
"Patañjali fills each sūtra with his experiential intelligence, stretching it like a thread, and weaving it into a garland of pearls of wisdom to flavour and savour by those who love and live in yoga"


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