Practice of the Month

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Flax Sesame Crackers 

Flax Sesame Crackers are a healthy light wheat cracker with good quantity of sesame seeds and flax seeds. Oats used in the dish are rich in antioxidants, lowers cholesterol, improves blood sugar. Flax seeds are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids reduces inflammation and…

YVNites honored at KKSU 

In 12th Convocation of Kavi Kulguru Kalidas Sanskrit University, Ramtek on March 6, 2024, YVN trained teacher (33rd YTTC Dadar), Smt Vanita Mugdam felicitated with gold medal for standing highest in M. A. in Yogashastra through open and distance education (ODL) by scoring 86.5 %…

YVN to conclude Golden Jubilee Celebrations 

Yoga Vidya Niketan, Member Institute, Indian Yoga Association is celebrating its Golden Jubilee Year from March 2023 to April 2024. Concluding function of Golden Jubilee Year Celebration will be held on April 9, 2024, in between 4pm to 7pm, at Yoga Bhavan, the own structure…

YVN organises events to promote Yoga 

Annual Exhibition Yoga Vidya Niketan, Member Institute of Indian Yoga Association held one day program on Annual Exhibition cum lectures on January 14, 2024 at Yoga Bhavan, Vashi, Navi Mumbai. After floral salute to statue of Swami Kuvalayanand and founder of YVN late Yogacharya Padmashri…

J&K UTCC announces Scholarship Certification Program 

The Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory Chapter Committee in association with Swaraj Yoga Institute announced a scholarship certification program from various categories, border areas and BPL background. The announcement was made under the chairmanship of Dr Shreyansh Jain and Shri Anil Swaraj, Founder, Swaraj Yoga…

Chandigarh SCC organizes Yoga Camp 

Chandigarh State Chapter of Indian Yoga Association organized 5 Days Yoga Camp for a healthy Lifestyle at Government College of Commerce and Business Administration (GCCBA Chandigarh, a constituent college of the Panjab University), Sector 50, Chandigarh from February 26 – March 1, 2024. This boot…

Karnataka SCC conducts GBM at Art of Living Ashram 

Karnataka State Chapter Committee of the Indian Yoga Association organised its General Body Meeting on January 28, 2024 with the blessings of Gurudev Shri Shri Ravishankar, Chairman, Indian Yoga Association at the Art of Living International Center, Bengaluru. The event was attended by the members…

Chandigarh SCC celebrates Republic Day at Consulate General of India, Canada 

Glimpses of the Republic Day celebrations by Shri Ajit Handa, Chairperson, Chandigarh State Chapter Committee at Consulate General of India, Vancouver. He was on a vacation in Canada with is daughter.

SAHS and IYA celebrates International Mind Body Wellness Day 

The NSS unit, School of Allied Health Sciences, Salem, Vinayaka Mission’s Research Foundation (DU) in collaboration with Indian Yoga association celebrated International Mind Body Wellness Day on January 3. On the occasion an awareness programme was held at the Skill Lab Auditorium. Prof.Dr.B.Sendilkumar, Director, SAHS,…

Shree Kala Yoga organises Yoga Trainer Camp 

Shree Kala Yoga, Associate Centre, Indian Yoga Association in along with Gujarat State Yog Board organised Yog Trainer Camp in Gandhidham. As many as 35 trainee attended the 45 days long training camp that commenced on December 1, 2023. The camp culminated on January 16,…



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09 Apr 2024

Yogavani

Let’s Set Standards, Not Try To Standardize Yoga
Editorial

Let’s Set Standards, Not Try To Standardize Yoga 

It has become very common to find people talking about the standardization of Yoga. The standardization of Yoga means that you need to get everybody to agree to ‘One We’ and humankind has never been able to find one way for anything. We all want oneness, but we want it to be “our” version of oneness.

Young woman and man practicing yoga indoors. Two people doing exercises.

Standardization to me is the watering down of all the components until everyone can agree upon something that is common and this is usually the lowest common denominator.

Let’s not put Yoga into the box, let us not limit it.

Rather than standardization where you water down everything until everyone is comfortable with it; let us start to set standards in Yoga.

Let us attempt to understand what it is that we expect from a Yoga instructor, Yoga professional, Yoga educator, Yoga therapist.

What are the personal levels of Sadhana that are expected?
What is the amount of information, knowledge and maybe wisdom expected at each level of such Yoga professionals.
How much must an instructor know; how much must they be able to demonstrate and how much must they be willing to grow and expand their consciousness?

Are they living Yoga? Do they think, speak and live a life of Yoga?

Because if we just bring it down to standardization, we will have a common curriculum and say, “Yes we have met it.”

Let us move towards skilful competency. Let us move towards understanding human beings as whole. Are these people fit to lead others on this beautiful path of Yoga? That is the type of standard we need to set.

‘We need to set standards.’ Yes. ‘They need to know certain practices. Yes. They need to know certain aspects of the psychology, the philosophy and the spirituality of Yoga. They must know it; and be able to express and explain it in an adequate manner; so that others can be guided.

But isn’t it most important that they “live” Yoga?

If their own personal Sadhana is not an every moment Sadhana 24 x 7, does just knowing answers to the questions, just being able to demonstrate the techniques — does it really make a person a ‘Yogacharya’?

We need to live ‘It’. Yoga is a lived experience; one that is both transformational and enables transcendence to manifest. THIS is why setting standards in Yoga education is so important.

Recently in a meeting someone was suggesting we take bits and pieces from all the traditions put it all together; and create a common syllabus. The all should follow this “standardised” syllabus everywhere. Please! Please! Let us not stoop so low with regard to Yoga.

Yoga is a way of life. It’s conscious living. Let’s not limit it.

Yoga is an unlimited infinite entity. It is the universe itself. It is life itself.

Why limit it to a box?
They talk about putting square pegs in round holes and round pegs in square holes. This is even worse because you are limiting the entire ocean into a teacup and then claiming that “this teacup is the ocean”. Let us not do that with Yoga.

We will be most undeserving of Yoga if we start to do that. We need to stop limiting Yoga. Yoga is not in the box. It is not even “out of the box”; because it is a “no box” way of life.

It is unlimited.

it is a life science that enables us to explore our unlimited potentiality; until we attain that highest level; where “we” and the Universe are “one”!

We need to keep elevating our standards, aiming higher and higher; not standardize, and pull everything down.

If this trend continues someone who knows ten Asanas will be a Yoga instructor; someone who knows 20 Asanas and three Pranayamas will be a Yoga teacher; and somebody who knows a bit of anatomy, physiology and pathology, with then become a Yoga therapy consultant!

Please, I beseech you, please let us not do that to Yoga, the “Mother of all Sciences”, that greatest gift of our Rishis for humanity.

Let us start to contemplate standards; be responsible in implementing them for our Yoga educators and Yoga professionals.

May we respect the diverse and multihued tapestry that is the “Living Tradition of Yoga”, consisting of the diverse Sampradayas and Paramparas.

This is my wish for all of us.
May we grow and glow in that wonderful universe of Yoga.

Yogacharya Dr Ananda
Balayogi Bhavanani, Editor

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