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B.K.S.Iyengar: the man who spread Yoga Internationally

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  • By Pragya Jha

Yoga is a way of life, an art of righteous living or an integrated system for the benefit of the body, mind and inner spirit. When it comes to yoga we must not forget one of the significant names who has contributed towards yoga and spread it across west. Bellur  Krishnamachar  Sundararaja Iyengar , popularly known as B.K.S. Iyengar, was the founder of the unique style of yoga known as “Iyengar Yoga” .

He was born on December 14, 1918 in Bellur , Karnataka . He frequently fell ill during his childhood and suffered from malariatuberculosis, typhoid fever and general malnutrition . Married to Ramamani Iyengar, father of five daughters and one son. Ramamani supported him and with her help  Iyengar refined and advanced the asanas he learned.

Iyengar’s introduction to Yoga

He was introduced to yoga by his brother–in-law Prof T Krishnamacharya. He was the person who influenced Iyengar and made him the creator of the word “Iyengar Yoga” and made it world famous. Iyengar single mindedly dedicated himself to Yoga .He practiced yoga for hours and was so obsessed with it that his neighbors and family considered him mad. Iyengar started making innovation in yoga by researching the way of internal alignment, considering the effect of body parts, even skin, in development of each pose. He considered body as a temple and asana as a prayer .

Iyengar’s contribution towards yoga

His dedication and work towards yoga made him popularize his “Iyengar Yoga” in India and across the world. He made Yoga accessible to people of every age. He brought yoga to the western world .He came to Pune in 1937 and spread the knowledge of yoga. In 1975 he set up his own institute  and expanded its branches in India and abroad.

His yoga got international recognition  when a violinist Yehudi Menuhin visited  Bombay and showed his interest in Yoga. He met Iyengar and told him that he is tired and could relieve only for five minutes. Iyengar made him perform Savasana and he fell asleep. After one hour he awoke and felt refreshed. Their bond became strong and Iyengar visited to Switzerland on the invitation of Menuhin. From then he visited west regularly and spread his teachings of yoga all over the world. Yehudi was the reason behind Iyengar’s transformation from an Indian yoga teacher to an International yoga guru. He even taught Queen Elizabeth that how to do a headstand.

Uniqueness of Iyengar Yoga

The attention is made on alignment of body parts. Props such as wooden gadgets, belts and ropes to make the poses accessible .He focused on therapeutic yoga which work against illness.

He wrote books like Light on Yoga; Light on Life; Light on Pranayama; The tree of Yoga; Yoga, wisdom and Practice and many more. He received Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan, Padma Shri, and Time 100 awards.

End of journey

BKS Iyengar took his last breath on 20th August 2014 at 3:15 am at the age of 95. He was admitted to hospital on complaint of breathlessness and low blood pressure. His condition deteriorated and he died of cardiac arrest. His disciples from India and abroad reached to Ramamani Iyengar Yoga Institute to pay tributes.

Iyengar was an enthusiastic man who won millions of hearts with Yoga.

Pragya Jha is a student of journalism in New Delhi.

 

 

 

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Guide Yourself on a Path of Self-Discovery this New Year

This new year, discover a new you

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BY PUJA GUPTA

After back-to-back celebrations of Christmas, New Year’s Eve and New Year, the need for a tranquil haven to pamper, nourish, detoxify and recharge is a must.

Take a short break and head over to any of these places listed below if your are a wellness seeker and want to unwind your free spirit. Shoba Mohan, founder of RARE India, suggests a multitude of options for those who seek a road map to guide them on a path of self-discovery.

Meditation can help you in self-discovery. Pixabay

Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, Kovalam, Kerala

Recognized as one of the Best Ayurveda Resorts in India, it is a perfect getaway to refresh mind, body and soul. The Ayurveda resort is perched on a cliff-edge, flanked by secluded beaches and dotted with traditional Keralite heritage cottages. Keeping with the central holistic principle of Ayurveda, Niraamaya Spa creates a place of harmony and aesthetics that restores natural balance. It also presents a bouquet of wellness offerings including Ayurvedic therapies, Yoga, Meditation and Pranayama, which provide a complete spiritual experience coupled with luxury.

Shreyas Yoga Retreat, Bengaluru, Karnataka

Situated at just one hour’s drive away from the Bengaluru International Airport, Shreyas Yoga Retreat is a sprawling oasis with over 12 cottages spread over 25 acres of greenery, water bodies and organic gardens. Guests here are able to commune with nature and experience its healing powers. Dedicated to promote authentic spiritual tradition of Yoga in a holistic manner, Shreyas is one of the world’s finest Yoga retreats, where Yoga is taught in traditional ashram style with daily yoga and meditation sessions, chanting classes, gourmet vegetarian cuisine, etc.

Anahata Retreat, Goa

Unwind your free spirit at Anahata Retreat in Goa, which offers elegant and eco-friendly accommodation and an open-air yoga studio with spectacular sea view. Twice daily yoga classes are programmed during the season, with varying type of yoga sessions. From Hatha Yoga to Vinyasa Yoga to Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra, there are Yoga Classes for all levels only 50 meters from a silver sand palm-fringed beach.

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Yoga can help in self-rejuvenation. Pixabay

Kathiwada Raaj Mahal, Madhya Pradesh

Walk away from the city chaos and reminiscence an era gone by at the Kathiwada Raaj Mahal in Juna Kathiwada of Madhya Pradesh. Open to discerning wellness seekers, the potent energy field, zero-pollution and complete silence make this property an ideal location for yoga and meditation. Moreover, the magical forests of Kathiwada lure you to take a guided trek into the dense jungles abound with indigenous trees.

Malabar Escape Purity Resort, Muhamma, Kerala

Purity is a magnificent lakefront villa hotel in an outstanding location near the peaceful waters of lake Vembanad in Kerala. The art & culture, experiences & flavours as well as personalized Yoga & spa treatments help to connect with traditions of Kerala. Pure Spa at this resort gives a cocooning Ayurveda treatment experience, making it a complete relaxing and luxury affair!

Also Read- Meditation Can Help You To Become Less Error Prone 

The Lodge at Wah, Palampur, Himachal Pradesh

The Lodge at Wah is a natural, eco-friendly home that offers guests a wholesome experience for self-care. Cottages are made of local materials and are worked on by skilled craftsmen from the region. The beautiful mountains and surreal natural beauty, coupled with the incredible climate, demand that tourists spend time outdoors and push their limits. Paragliding, treks, stargazing and bird watching are some of the experiences that one can avail for self-rejuvenation. (IANS)