Tirumalai Krishnamacharya

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Born in a remote Indian village, T Krishnamacharya is considered the ":father of modern yoga" - Yogi, healer, linguist, Vedic scholar, expert in the Indian Schools of thought, researcher, author ... in other words, a legend.

A perpetual student, Krishnamacharya began his yogic journey at age five, studying Patanjali's Yoga Sutras with his father.

At age 16, Krishnamacharya had a profound spiritual vision where Nathamuni, a revered 9th century yogi, appeared and sang verses from the Yogarahasya, a thousand-year-old text that had long-since vanished.

Krishnamacharya went on to complete degrees in philosophy, logic, divinity, and music before devoting himself fully to the practice of yoga.  He received his training in hatha yoga with his guru, Ramamohana Brahmacharya, who lived in a cave in a remote region of the Himalayas.  Krishnamacharya also spent many years studying, and then teaching, Sanskrit, Vedic rituals and philosophy.  His style of yoga is the first known to have incorporated movement through a series of poses that are coordinated with breathing, a style that is known as vinyasa yoga.

After seven years of intense study, Brahmachari instructed Krishnamacharya to start a family and teach yoga to India's householders (common people).  Following his guru's instructions, Krishnamacharya married and lived the poor life of a yoga teacher until receiving a commission from the Maharaja of Mysore to teach at the city's Sanskrit College in 1931.

From 1926 to 1946, Krishnamacharya ran a yoga school at the palace of the Maharaja Krishnaraja Wadiyar in Mysore.  During that time, Krishnamacharya had several students who would go on to play pivotal roles in popularizing yoga in the West.

Ashtanga yoga guru K Pattabhi Jois was a devoted, long-time student whose vigorous style of asana was closely based on Krishnamacharya’s teachings.  BKS Iyengar, whose sister was Krishnamacharya’s wife, received his first yoga instruction from his brother-in-law before branching out to develop his own alignment-based style.

If today, yoga is an inherent part of the everyday lives of millions of people across the world, it is due in large measure to the pioneering efforts of T Krishnamacharya who revived yoga in the early 20th century.  While preserving ancient wisdom and reviving lost teachings, Krishnamacharya was also a revolutionary innovator who developed and adapted yoga practices that would offer health, mental clarity and spiritual growth to any individual in the modern-day world.  By integrating the ancient teachings of Yoga and Indian philosophy with modern-day requirements, Krishnamacharya created yoga practices that are as accurate and powerful as they are practical and relevant.

© 2020 tt-ho       The Path   The Journey   The Evolution

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