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Myths of the Asanas

by Alanna Kaivalya Shiva Rea Manorama Arjuna van der Kooij

Millions of yoga students around the world attend class regularly to reap the physical benefits of yoga, assuming the different poses and frequently calling them by their sanskrit names. While many probably know that hanumanasa is named for the Hindu deity Hanuman, fewer know why this is the case. Behind each asana and its corresponding movements is an ancient story about a god, a sage, or sacred animal, much like Aesop's fables or European folktales. Myths of the Asanas is the first book to compile and re-tell these ancient stories.The myths of yoga's spiritual tradition have the power to bring about a change of heart, helping readers and students realize their full potential. Meditating on the tolerance of trees while standing in tree pose can help one become more tolerant. Learning how the disfigured sage Astavakra came to be the teacher of a king can liberate us from our anxieties about external appearance and our self-imposed limitations. Marveling at the devotion of Hanuman to his lord Rama can serve as a source of spiritual strength and determination.Through discovering mythic tales such as these in Myths of the Asanas, readers will add a new dimension to their practice and study of yoga. As Eknath Easwaran, the founder of passage meditation, put it, "yogic myth has a genius to clothe the infinite in human form."

The Poetry of Yoga

by Shiva Rea Hawah

Hafiz, Gibran, Neruda, Rumi . . . their yoga mats were blank pieces of paper; they did asana with pencils between their fingers; their pranayama was inverted metaphor; and their Samadhi was uninhibited, naked poetry. Yoga is a journey, an intricate dance of mind, body, breath, and spirit. It is cultivation of self-awareness through reflection. The Poetry of Yoga is an ecstatic gathering of poetry written by some of the most accomplished and well-known spiritual teachers of our time. Poems are set in the following yogic themes: compassion, desire, freedom, transformation, and service. A book all yoga practitioners cherish and return to over and over for nourishment and inspiration.

Yoga Adjustments

by Mark Stephens Shiva Rea

The quintessential guide to yoga assisting and hands-on teaching, Yoga Adjustments introduces the art and practice of providing yoga assists to yoga students. Addressing one of the most important topics in the yoga field, expert yoga instructor and best-selling author Mark Stephens covers the philosophy of yoga practice, the sensibilities of touch in teaching yoga and improving alignment, the seven principles of hands-on yoga teaching, and the twenty-five most effective methods of tactile cueing. An invaluable resource for all yoga teachers, teacher trainers, and serious yoga students, this book includes a foreword by yoga star Shiva Rea as well as over 850 unique instructional photos and explanatory captions demonstrating precise ways of guiding a variety of flowing sequences.Opening with an in-depth discussion of the philosophy of yoga assisting, Part I--Foundations describes the methods and techniques of giving yoga assistance, with detailed discussions of all of the elements of yoga assisting including communicating with students, qualities of touch, the five basic steps of providing hands-on cues, hands-on positioning and stance. Part II--Applications demonstrates how to assist students in each of over 100 postures in the seven families of asanas (poses). Each chapter begins with background on an asana family and close consideration of its foundation asana. Each asana is presented in a two-page spread with photos that show how to give students effective guidance and support. Part III--Evolution offers thoughts on the further development of yoga in the twenty-first century.From the Trade Paperback edition.

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