Reflections on Mr. Iyengar
Several more of Sunset Yoga Center’s teachers offer their reflections on Mr. Iyengar. This month Amy Duncan and Sally Hoesing offer their thoughts with both these teachers discussing the book The Tree of Yoga.
I never met B. K. S. Iyengar personally or in a class, only through his students who became my teachers. I believe that they have truthfully passed on his teachings to me and others.
I attended yoga classes taught in the Iyengar Yoga method for a number of years before I finally purchased a copy of his book, Light on Yoga, which was strange for a bibliophile such as myself to wait so long. I leafed through the book looking at the pictures of the various poses and thought “Right” and set the book aside.
Several years passed before I picked up the book again and read the Introduction. Something touched me while I read. Some of the ideas were as I believe and others I found I could accept. It became a touchstone for me. And it brought me closer to what I am today.
After Guruji’s death I did as I imagine many of his students did: recommit our practice to honor him. Now, after my Pranayama practice, I read from his book, The Tree of Yoga. I find this practice grounding. I think differently when I practice and when I teach the yoga asanas, trying to be as honest as I can in my practice. All to honor the man who made yoga available to me.
Before I even entered a yoga studio and took a class I read “The Tree of Life”. I felt like his conscious was talking to mine. I thought, this is something I can be a part of.
Back then (14, 15 years ago??) I was looking for something to complement how I felt when I was running; while running I was completely aware of my surroundings (so as not to get hit by a car or step on a piece of glass) and yet you could honk the car horn and wave frantically and wonder why I did not notice you. I was absorbed in my connection with my body and the universe. That’s how I feel when I practice yoga: free and focused, in his words, “Asana is meditation in action,”.Even though I never met him in person I feel his presence, his instruction, in my poses.