|[ Excerpt from The Science of Yoga, page viii ]
This classical yoga training program is a humble recognition of the need in modern society for guidance toward a new way of living -- a way of living that is in greater harmony with our natural surroundings and more synergistic with our fellow beings.
Amidst the chaos and clatter of present-day life, and the often seemingly amoral habits and actions of individuals and vast groups of people around the world, it seems that we have forgotten who we are, why we are here, and where it is that we must go.
With all the advancements in the scientific world we still have not even begun to approach an understanding of what exactly our place is within this vast Universe. Instead, at every turn it seems that humanity is heading further and further towards self-annihilation, rapidly destroying its surrounding natural environment, and leaving in its wake an atmosphere of increasingly stressful living conditions, poverty, aggression, uncertainty and lack of fulfilment.
I say a new way of living, but in fact, yoga is anything but new. It is the science itself of 'higher living', ancient and perhaps the most comprehensive of its kind. Much more than a mere system of physical exercises as it is commonly portrayed today, yoga was, and is a way of life.
It encompasses not only habits for healthy, pure living, but also 'attitudes toward being'. This includes the moral and ethical foundations that enable us to exist harmoniously with each other and with nature, as well as for evolving the Self to the ultimate heights of spiritual consciousness.
This yoga training program was created to provide comprehensive guidance into the multidimensional, multifaceted world of yoga. If you have ambitions to teach yoga (or even if you already do teach), then this program is a MUST for you -- an essential investment of your time and energy!
This course will not only be a valuable source of material for the furtherance of your own yoga education and the enrichment of your life, but for the benefit of your students too.
The Science of Yoga course was primarily written for the one who simply wants more out of life -- to gain a deeper understanding of their self, and to find deeper meaning and purpose in their existence. I eagerly offer this course to you and am optimistic that through yoga you will find, as I have, those very things and more.
The information and concepts within these lessons are not of my own creation. They are the culmination of wisdom garnered from the selfless experiments of the great seers and sages of old, known as Rishis, who systematically organized the great science of growth and evolution that we today call yoga.
Throughout these pages, I have borrowed the words of many an enlightened master, wise orator and humble guru to help bring to you their wonderful and profound messages.
In the Yoga Sastra (yoga teachings) it is told that if one were to meet their guru and God at the same time, then one should first worship the guru, for it is he/she who has made it possible for them to know God. In that sense, I humbly acknowledge those who have guided me from the darkness towards the light.
I extend my eternal gratitude to any and all that have contributed to my own growth and understanding over the years, which cumulatively has placed me in the position of being able to share the ancient wisdom of India with you now.
So too then, I humbly request that your recognition be guided toward those who have come before me, before my teachers, and before theirs as well -- to Maharishi Patanjali, the great codifier of the Ashtanga Yoga System, right through to the great saints and sages of ancient Bharata (India), who painstakingly carved out the path that is yoga for the betterment of all humankind.
Above all, I acknowledge the great Swami Gitananda Giri Guru Maharaj, upon whose system of teachings much of the practical component of this yoga training course follows, and whose guidance has been a constant source of insight and inspiration for me during my many months of preparing this course material.
My heartfelt thanks to his wife, my dear Amma, Yogacharini Srimata Meenakshi Devi Bhavanani, and their son, Yogacharya Dr. Ananda Balayogi Bhavanani, through whom these wonderful teachings and practices have reached me, and ultimately you.
NOTE: This yoga article is an excerpt from The Science of Yoga, an online yoga training program with streaming yoga videos and 600 pages of step-by-step yoga instruction.
"The Science of Yoga is a course worthy of
leather binding and an honored place in the
finest libraries in the world
... It is indeed a masterful work."
Dr. John Michael Christian
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