After practicing yoga for over thirty years down in the big smoke we felt called to move back into nature into an environment ideal to go deeper into the higher limbs of yoga practice. The Vedas suggest that when one comes to the middle of ones life (around 50) to change ones mode of life and spend more time on spiritual practice in nature. This mode of life is called vanaprashtha (forest dweller). This same mode of life is suggested in many yogic texts. We took that quite literally and live now on a mountaintop surrounded by ancient rainforest. Living in nature inspires our practice greatly, which we can then share when we come back into the cities to teach workshops or retreats.

This blog will give you updates of what we are currently working on and it will give us the opportunity to stay in contact with the many people and students we have worked with throughout the last few decades. Of course if you want to post any questions, your mountaintop yogis will do their best to answer them.

Healing knee injuries

This post describes important points to consider when wanting to heal knee injuries such as meniscus and cruciate ligament injuries. These injuries are common amongst modern yogis often due faulty performance of postures, forcing the legs into positions and lack of attention to detail.

What is prana?

As is the case with many other terms, prana can

have several meanings depending on context. For example some

yogic scriptures instruct you to draw the prana in through the left

nostril and expel it through the right and vice versa. Here, prana

simply means breath.

More often we come across passages that advise us not to let the

prana enter the head, or consciously push it into the arms to gain

strength or direct it into areas of the body that harbour disease. Very

common is also the scriptural advice to move prana into the central

energy channel (sushumna)[…]

The union of Hatha and Raja Yoga

This post describes how the higher yogic techniques such as dharana (concentration), dhyana (meditation) and samadhi (absorption, ecstasy) must be added to the lower limbs of yoga to make produce success in practice. The modern fad of reducing yoga to asana practice has nothing to do with traditional yoga.

Is pranayama just Ujjayi or is it more?

Is pranayama just the slowing and extension of the breath (aka Ujjayi) or is it more?
Pranayama is defined in Yoga Sutra II.49 as extension of inhalation and exhalation (for example Ujjayi during Ashtanga Vinyasa). Sutra II.50, however, gives a deeper meaning of pranayama […]

How does asana work and why is it important?

The importance that yoga places on deleting bodily, tissue and cell memory and what attitude the yogi needs to do so. To inquire into this we first need to understand yoga’s panchakosha model. The model was already alluded to in Brhad Aranyaka Upanishad but found its fullest expression in Taittiriya Upanishad (II.2-5).

How many asanas do you need?

Was early yoga and Patanjali only referring to sitting postures like Padmasana or also to a multiple set of yoga asanas, as we know them today? Additionally, are the numbers of asanas declining or increasing?

The four qualities of a yoga teacher

Many modern yogis and indeed many teachers practise to improve their yoga and to get recognition. When I started to train teachers in 1998 (must be getting old..) I had learned in India that the quality of a teacher grows proportional to their ability to perform asanas.

Why yoga without pranayama is not enough

Although yoga has eight limbs (Yoga Sutra II.29) we can discern three main layers of practice of which the others are subdivisions or ancillary techniques. These three layers are posture (asana), breath work (pranayama) and meditation (dhyana). Two of them, posture and meditation, are today very widely practised, but they are usually not linked […].