Integral Yoga® Magazine, Issue No. 119 "Go Within"
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Go Within
“There is a Guru in all of us. The external Guru and the teachings are there to guide you to go within and recognize that Guru within, who is constantly guiding you. It’s almost like a mirror showing you your face. The mirror doesn’t have a face of its own. It simply reflects your face. No one has seen his or her own face. Have you ever seen your face? Do you know you even have a face? Have you seen it? Only in the mirror. In the mirror you don’t see your actual face. What you see in the mirror is the reflection. Like that, you are the Guru but you have not seen it. The external Guru is there to point out the Guru within you.

“God bless you. Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.”  —Sri Swami Satchidananda

(photo art by Sherry Van Dyke)

My Friendship with Sri Swami Satchidananda:
An Embrace that Goes On Forever

By The Very Reverend James Parks Morton

On the occasion of Swami Satchidananda's 104th birth anniversary today, we reprint this beautiful tribute by his dear friend and interfaith collegue.
    Swami Satchidananda is one of my favorite people. Talking about him is a joy, but it’s also a big job, because it’s like talking about Albert Einstein or Pope John XXIII. These are huge people and Swamiji is in that category of really amazing people. Swamiji was the most open, the most welcoming, the most unpretentious human, divine, spiritual creature I’ve ever met; and also very funny. I think the one word to describe him is his openness. There was just no hiding of anything in his being. Once you met him he embraced you, and that embrace goes on forever. He had an immense number of people—extraordinary people—that he called his friends. Some of the most brilliant people in the world, and some of the simplest people and the most loving people are his people. And so that’s a very important thing about his openness. He reached out to everybody; just an amazing gang of people who love him and whom he loves so much.  MORE

On Swami Satchidananda's 84th birthday (in 1998), his students gathered to celebrate the occasion and offer their love and gratitude to their Guru for his teachings. He addressed the gathering in a sincere and humble way, expressing his appreciation for his students and explaining how it is the greatness of the student—not the teacher—that is to be admired.

Christians Practicing Yoga: An Integrated Approach
By Amy Russell

In celebration of Christmas, we take a look at a movement inspired by Father Tom Ryan, CSP, a Catholic priest who embarked on his own study of Yoga many years ago.
    From its ancient beginnings, Yoga was a rigorous spiritual discipline that demanded strict adherence to an ethical code of life as well as intense physical practices. It was understood that how we think, behave and move are deeply interrelated, and that to know God we must gain control over our mental and physical impulses. Yoga developed in India, a primarily Hindu culture, but was intended as a universal human practice. As “Christians practicing Yoga” we approach Yoga with a deep sense of gratitude and respect for its ancient history. Our intention is not to “Christianize” Yoga. Rather, we share a strong desire to live a holistic Christian spirituality and to benefit from practices that contribute to it. Yoga, understood not just as Hatha Yoga, is about experiencing our capacity for union with the divine and experiencing this reality in our very beings. As Fr. Tom writes: “The human person is not a soul and a body, but inspirited flesh, an animated body. One is one’s body and is one’s soul at one and the same time.” Yoga is not about becoming someone else, but rather becoming more of who we are: creatures made by God to give and receive love.  MORE

Trikonasana Pose:
The Key to Finally Finding Peace with Ourselves and the World

By Alanna Kaivalya

Balanced between three equidistant points, the triangle is a metaphor for the three cornerstones of existence—birth, death, and life—and the gods who oversee them. Brahma presides over our beginnings, bringing things into being with his creative energy (rajas); Vishnu sustains through serenity and positivity (sattva); and Shiva closes the loop with inertia and chaos (tamas). A triangle’s equilibrium depends on its three vertices; so the equilibrium of all living beings rests on the balance of these three gunas, or intrinsic qualities: rajas, sattva, and tamas. All of us experience periods of imbalance, in which we struggle to be our best, happiest, most effective selves. Understanding the cause of that instability (unbalanced gunas) is the first step to overcoming it. The next step is rebalancing the gunas through Yoga.  When we identify most strongly with our corporeal selves, we are under the influence of tama guna (associated with habits like eating processed foods or bingeing on TV).  When we identify most with our intellectual selves, we are in raja guna (associated with competition, impatience, caffeine, and hyperactivity).  MORE

Survive the Cold and Flu Season with Ayurveda Remedies and Rejuvenation
By Jeff Perlman

From an Ayurvedic perspective, the cold and flu season begins as we start to transition from the hot, bright and intense summer (governed by pitta) months of June through September into the fall (vata) season of October through January. In the fall, the qualities in and around us become cooler, drier, lighter, and windier. This transition can weaken our immunity and make us more susceptible to illness. When the winter (kapha) season (February-May) arrives with its qualities of cold, wet and damp, heaviness and stagnation—the onset of illness can increase. According to Ayurveda, the Vata dosha is responsible for regulating the immune system and Kapha dosha is responsible for regulating the respiratory and nasal systems as well as the stomach. In Ayurvedic theory; like increases like and an energetic quality is brought into balance with the opposite qualities. A preventative program that takes these energetics into account is the best way to be proactive during the cold and flu season. The first step to staying healthy is to balance and strengthen the vata dosha during the fall season. We do this by favoring vata’s opposite actions of warmth, wetness, heaviness, and stability. Doing so grounds the body, mind, and spirit and strengthens the immune system for winter.  MORE

"Mr. Indifferent"
An Animated Short Film by Aryasb Feiz

As we celebrate this holiday season, let’s take time to reflect on how we can make a difference. Let’s remember the spirit of the holiday season and reach out to those who need help and volunteer for causes that change us for the better, just as they change the world. This delightful short film conveys this very timely message. A great teaching tool for children, too!

Sutra 1.12 Abhyasa vairagyabhyam tannirodhah

Swami Satchidananda translates this sutra as: These mental modifications are restrained by practice and non−attachment. He comments upon this sutra as follows: “On the positive side, you practice. On the other side, you detach yourself from the cause for these modifications. Patanjali gives both a positive and negative approach to thought control.” The ingrained habit of mistaking the vrittis as the Self ceases by practice and nonattachment. Abhyasa implies motion, movement toward a goal. This suggests perseverance and repetition. Successful Yoga practice begins with setting clear goals, deciding on a course of action and then following through. The heart of success in Yoga is regularity. Habits are formed through repetition. Through abhyasa good habits gradually replace harmful ones. Nonattachment is one of the great pillars of Yoga theory and practice. It is paired with practice (as in the Bhagavad Gita, 6.35) since they harmonize, balance, and support each other. It is important not to mistake nonattachment for not caring or indifference. Nonattachment is a clear, objective, unbiased state of mind. A mind firmly established in nonattachment is not without emotion. Instead, it is clear, unbiased, and loving. Patanjali’s description of nonattachment can be found in sutras 1.15 and 1.16.  MORE

Service in Satchidananda: Sri Lanka
By Chandra Walker

Namaste! Jayan (Johnson, former caretaker of the LOTUS and head of security for Satchidananda Ashram–Yogaville) and myself are in Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka doing seva on behalf of Service in Satchdananda (SIS). We are buying food, washing machines, and beds and taking them to hospitals and homes that are still affected by the 2004 tsunami. We are so blessed to be able to help all those in need. At the moment, Sri Lanka is still not in good shape. Jayan and I wanted to share the news of this much needed seva with you all. The Gibraltar Integral Yoga Centre and our dearest Nalanie (founder of SIS) is helping by sending funds so we can continue this important service. May 2019 bring you all a shower of blessing in abundance! Always at our Guru's feet! Jai! (photo: Jayan & Chandra standing behind Sri Lankan couple.)

Sarah and Peter Petronio have a long storied history with Integral Yoga. Sarah was born in India, studied and taught Yoga and, with Peter, raised their children under the guidance of Swami Satchidananda, who was their frequent guest in Paris—where the family eventually settled. Peter, one of the original group that, along with Peter Max, hosted Swami Satchidananda's first visit to New York City in 1966, was a creative director for a large international ad agency. He also designed the Integral Yoga logo and branding. Sarah became a highly accomplished tap dancer and teacher, mentoring the likes of Savion Glover! In her book Tap Dancing America: A Cultural History (2010), dance historian Constance Valis Hill described Petronio’s characteristic footwork as blurring “the boundaries between the music and dance”. The Chicago Tribune arts critic Howard Reich once exhorted the audience to “listen to her”, for they would find some “fascinating rhythms” in what she did. Sarah was recently profiled in an article lauding her artistry. Congratulations Sarah!

Service in Satchidananda: Yogaville
A Report from Jeff Ananda Kamen

For over 30 years, "Christmas in Buckingham" has brought holiday cheer to Yogaville's neighbors. And, now again this year, "Christmas in Buckingham" has been underway. What a joy those who are participating are! How sweetly they manifest Swami Satchidananda's compassion. Because of their deliveries of food, clothing, and gifts donated by sangha, many of those in need—including the elderly and home-bound—in Buckingham county, Virginia, received this seva during the holiday season. Elves and recipients alike shared the true spirit of the holidays. My gratitude to the elves who sent me the photos and information to present. Jai Gurudev! Jai sangha! (photo: Yogaville Santa & his elves, in front of the Christmas tree, prior to loading the vans to begin deliveries.)

Inspiring Meme of the Week
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