Guru Purnima

Sri BKS Iyengar at his 95th birthday celebration, in Pune, India

Sri BKS Iyengar at his 95th birthday celebration, in Pune, India

In India, Guru Purnima is held on the full moon in July/August. This Sunday, July 15th, from 2pm to 4pm, at the Iyengar Yoga Institute, in Los Angeles, we will celebrate with a teacher team taught class dedicated to our teachers Sri BKS Iyengar, Geetaji and Prashantji. For details, please visit
http://www.iyila.org/news/guru-purnima

In Sanskrit, the root “Gu” refers to darkness or ignorance, while “Ru” means the remover of darkness. Our teachers do help us to, through our practice, find ways that we avoid or are addicted to sensations, and ideas of the way that we think things should be. Habits are hard to identify, as they have become so familiar. These habits form our experience. The Upanishads say:

Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become your character. Watch your character; for it becomes your destiny.

Through a daily yoga practice we encounter many habits; some of them create a pleasurable experience and others are helpful as they point out fears and ways that we undermine growth. Guruji Iyengar encourages us to cultivate a reflective attitude throughout practice, what he calls reflection in action. This has been a life long practice for me, and one that has helped to remove darkness to see the play of insight, endeavor, patience and persistence pay off. I am eternally grateful to my teachers!

 

 

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2 Responses to Guru Purnima

  1. Ruth McReynolds says:

    Hi, Lisa…..so true!
    “Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits……they become your character. Watch your character; for it becomes your destiny.” No truer words spoken. It is tough, facing your weaknesses. It is a humbling experience and liberating. What a weight lifted off! :-) It is wonderful to surrender to who you are, warts and all. Liberating to love you for who you are and love others for who they are. We are in this together….we might as well make this life ride the most enjoyable that we can!

    • lisa says:

      Thank you Ruth, for your thoughts. As I practice listening to myself while in conversation, I can feel when I become reactive. I can then calm down and breath, so that any words spoken will come from a clear and kind place. This is a practice in itself!

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