Thank you, B.K.S. Iyengar

A gratitude map:

Thank you, Jane Barrett, for firmly grounding me in detailed alignment and for giving me an early teaching nest.

Thank you, Jan Campbell, for your cheerfulness and eureka! instructions in urdhva hastasana.

Thank you, Rodney Yee, for your mystical exploration of padmasana.

Thank you, Erich Schiffmann, for a groovy partner foot adjustment in ustrasana, for hosting my first adult attempt at a handstand, and for the invitation to cultivate interest with passionate calm.

Thank you, Roger Cole, for cradling and adjusting my neck in utthita trikonasana.

Thank you, Cindy Dollar, for the rolled-up mat behind the knees and under the feet in virasana and for being so welcoming when I randomly drop in to your studio.

Thank you, Julie Gudmestad, for your humor, unhurried instruction and fun tricks with shoulder straps.

Thank you, Bryan Legere, for the Great Yoga Wall and your love of the sutras.

Thank you, Manouso Manos, for your five layers of instructions for lower-back therapeutics in a chair version of ardha chandrasana.

Thank you, Ray Long, for an introduction to the popliteus muscle and for your willingness to explain why it’s worth going deeper.

Thank you, John Schumacher and Unity Woods teachers, for sharing your collective decades of wisdom and reverence for your beloved Guruji.

Thank you, Kim Weeks, for cittavrtti nirodhah on Day One and for holding the spaces for my first 200-hour training.

Thank you, Kristen Krash, for your spunky dedication and for telling us to move our skin.

Thank you, Liana Brooks-Rubin, for your warm kindness and encouragement.

Thank you, Lois Steinberg, for your frequent laughter and engaged and engaging presence.

Thank you, Patricia Walden, for your crisp and joyful guidance in standing poses.

Thank you, Joan White, for having eyes in the back of your head and seeing my wonky hip in upavishta konasana from 50 feet away in a crowded room.

Thank you, Bobby Goldin, for suggesting that I take your teacher training course, for your book about perky groins and jokes about jewels, for Raleigh and Sanibel, for bhramari, for helping me find a non-bug-eyed setup for salamba sarvangasana, and for telling me to just keep doing what I’m doing.

Thank you, Aadil Palkhivala, for sharing your three decades of study with Mr. Iyengar and for developing and transmitting Purna Yoga. Thank you, Catharine Eberhart and Bob Maiers, for growing Purna Yoga in North Carolina.

Thank you, Matthew Sanford, for sharing your huge heart, your embracing wingspan, your self and your stories, and for adapting Mr. Iyengar’s teachings in a transcendent, transformational way. You have seismically changed my life.

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bksiyengarThese are some of the clearest moments and feelings I cherish from years of studying with people close to the teachings B.K.S. Iyengar, who died August 20, 2014. Yoga can be a lonely and isolating pursuit ~ but of course, it is meant to be shared. Yoga is an endeavor that connects us and shows us that we are already connected. Thank you to all of my teachers for sharing and connecting many dots for me. In doing so, they embody, honor and sustain an indelible lineage.

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That time I met B.K.S. Iyengar … 

 

 

 

 

 

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