Integral Yoga® Magazine, Issue No. 178  The Yoga Practices
View this email in your browser

“The Yoga Practices”

All the Yoga practices are just undoing, unwinding, loosening up again, and relaxing. Until you unwind, you will be swinging like the pendulum from excited mind to depressed mind, back and forth again and again. Once you begin to loosen up again, the swinging becomes less and less. At a certain point you are totally unwound. Then you simply find your neutrality, your center of gravity, and rest.

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

(Photo: Demonstrating a Yoga breathing practice; Taiwan, 1985.)

Finding the Joy in Self-Discipline
By Sri Swami Satchidananda

Question: Why do Yoga practices appear as disciplines when they are the source of joy?
Answer: Yoga practices don’t appear as discipline—they are discipline. And who said that a disciplined life is an unhappy life? This seems to imply that discipline doesn’t make us joyful. That is not correct. If you really want a good, permanent, and continuous joy, you can only get it through discipline. Only when you discipline the automobile is there a joyful ride. If your steering is wobbling or the break doesn’t work, or there is uneven tire pressure, it won’t be a joyful ride. It will send you into a ditch or make you have a terrible accident. So, discipline means a well-tuned instrument. Your mind is like that car. It should be well-tuned, with no loose bolts and nuts. We think that freedom means to do whatever we want. Freedom doesn’t mean without discipline. You are really free only if you are disciplined. And with that freedom, you can also help others. But without discipline, if you are free, you may hurt others and yourself as well. Everything needs discipline. If you want to play a violin, the strings must be well-disciplined.  MORE


We are witnessing an era of polarization in the United States and in many places in our world. For this reason, we have chosen to open our hearts with the practice of compassion for the month of February. Compassion is a cornerstone of all spiritual paths and a primary virtue in all faiths. It arises naturally from the awareness that we are all a part of an interconnected web of life, with the same spiritual consciousness at the heart of each being. It is a positive expression of Ahimsa, or non-harming, which is one of the most fundamental precepts in the eight-limbed path delineated by the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. Showing compassion for ourselves can be a simple way to begin this practice and ensure that it does not reinforce an unhealthy habit of self-denial. We can each direct this intention to the body when we practice asanas, responding to its messages instead of imposing how we would like it to be. Then we can develop that same compassionate awareness towards our minds, witnessing its moods, desires, harmful attachments and aversions, then patiently correct ourselves without unhealthy shame.  MORE

We're thrilled to announce that this classic documentary is now available for instant download here. The film, which includes the beautiful Sanskrit chanting of Yoga Sutras, explores the role of Yoga and spirituality in lifestyle medicine. It also highlights the impact of the Yoga movement in various aspects of western culture and the link between inner and outer peace. Includes commentary by Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Mehmet Oz, Rev. James P. Morton, Rabbi Joseph Gelberman, Peter Max, Felix Cavaliere, Br. David Steindl-Rast, Dr. Bhagavan Antle, Dr. Sandra McLanahan and CNN's Larry King, among others. This inspiring one-hour documentary informs, entertains and provokes self-inquiry. Watch the trailer here.

Yoga Has Been Zukerberg'd
By Waylon Lewis

Recently, Waylon Lewis (founder of Elephant Journal & host of Walk the Talk Show) riffed about the state of Yoga during his "Walk the Talk Show." He noted that many of the first generation teachers, who learned directly from Yoga masters, have retired, are retiring, or will retire in the next 10 years. Where does this leave the modern Yoga world?
    In just 10 years, who will present Yoga in depth? And who will learn it? Not the legions of new Yoga teachers that pass through the doors of Corepower and Yogaworks, each month (god bless ’em—larger, more accessible studios are creating genuine, peaceful armies of good people in this crazy world). So: will you or your favorite local Yoga teacher accept this important challenge and responsibility—and study, practice and teach Yoga’s roots? So if your Yoga teacher spends more times on their playlist than: 1) Alignment, 2) Reminders about breath, and 3) Intention (to be of benefit), you may be doing a vaguely dressed-up aerobics. And that is okay—really. But it may not be watering the roots of Yoga, and it may not be safe for your body long-term, or transformative for our health and relationship with our habitual patterns.

Born just an hour before, my new baby boy slept soundly next to me in the hospital room when I got up to go to the bathroom. I had no idea that I would die and come back before I saw him again, and how that experience would transform me. The nurse held my elbow as we crossed the room, neither of us realizing my blood pressure was plummeting. Walking past the picture window I noticed the February night sky twinkling with stars, wisps of cold air seeping in through the glass. By the time we reached the bathroom, her distant chatter sounded soupy to my ears and the world felt like it was moving in slow motion. I tried to tell her but the words stuck in my mouth — my legs weak, gray splotches filled my vision. I remember my cheek brushing against her silky brown hair as I slid to the floor. Then everything went dark. The kind of dark where you can’t see your hand in front of your face, like passing out but without that sickening feeling in your stomach. Vaguely aware that the nurse had positioned me up against the corner of the bathtub, I could feel my head pressed between my knees. She was calling to me as if from across a valley.  MORE

I kept thinking about the song “One” for which I had written both music and lyrics in 1977. It’s a song about wondering what we can do when we see injustice, and it expresses my long held belief that we—all of us humans—are most effective when we come together as “One” and stand up for our values such as dignity, inclusivity, equality of opportunity, and caring for our most vulnerable neighbors. Drawn to the piano like pins to a magnet, I was inspired to write some new lyrics for the last chorus to reflect my feelings about the 2018 election. And then I wanted to record it. My manager quickly booked Studio B at Henson Recording Studios. Studio B at A & M (as the studio was known in the 1970s) was where I recorded most of "Tapestry." Studio B was still intensely magical for me on that October Saturday when I recorded “One 2018.”  I’m releasing the recording (a) for the sheer joy of sharing it, and (b) in the hope of inspiring more people to participate actively in the coming election by voting and bringing other people who value humanity, truth, and love above fear, lies, and hatred. (Carole King is an award-winning singer/songwriter who is also an Integral Yoga teacher and supporter.)

The billboard reads: "It’s like milk but made for humans." Its prominent position in Rotterdam allows it to be seen by one of Europe’s busiest port cities and spread its powerful message. [The same signage, placed on columns and in other places is also popping up all over Europe.] In essence, the sign wants people to face up to the fact that animals do not simply produce milk for our consumption. Therefore, they and their products should not be treated as consumables when other options are available to us. Plant milk such as Oatly is made using plant ingredients, without forcing any living creatures out of their natural lifestyles. Speaking about billboards like Oatly’s, Sandra Higgins (founder of Go Vegan World advertising group) said: "If you asked most people if they think it is wrong to unnecessarily harm other sentient beings, they would answer that it is. This is because we all know that other animals feel." She continued: "[Posters and billboards] expose this inconsistency between our values and our behavior. We claim to respect fact, yet we live according to myth."  
Inside/Outside Yogaville

Another Friday, another arrest at Jane Fonda's Fire Drill Fridays protest. The Academy Award winning actress and activist has been protesting weekly since October when she announced she was moving to Washington "to be closer to the epicenter of the fight for our climate." Her participation has ended in multiple arrests for her and others who have decided to join her crusade. Thankfully, among those not arrested were Yogaville residents Dhivya Berthoud (far left),

and Shanti Fales (one of Yogaville's younger residents) who have been taking part in these protests in Washington, DC. Dhivya is the secretary/newsletter editor for "Friends of Buckingham," our local climate crisis advocate group working closely with YES (Yogaville Environmental Solutions). Ms. Fonda was particularly delighted to meet a young teen like Shanti (shaking hands with her) and encouraged her to continue her interest and activism.
Inspiring Meme of the Week
Copyright © Integral Yoga International/Satchidananda Ashram–Yogaville,Inc. All rights reserved.
Sign up for this free eMagazine on our website: or

Our mailing address is:
Integral Yoga Magazine
108 Yogaville Way, Buckingham, Virginia 23921 USA

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list