yoga sutra 1.1

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Violet Leaf on Orange Background (Palmette), 1947, Henri Matisse 

1.1 अथ योगानुशासनम्

atha yogānuśāsanam

here upon, the lesson on yoga.

This is the first sutra of 196 sutras on the teachings of yoga by Patanjali. “Atha” translates as now. Now, at this moment, the teaching begins. And now, at this moment, we can begin our practice. No other time is better than now. Pema Chodron succinctly describes beginning our spiritual practice in How to Meditate.

You start where you are. You might feel that you are the single most stressed-out person on Planet Earth; you might be hopelessly in love; you might have six children and a full-time job; you might be going through a depression or a dark night of the soul. Wherever you are, you can begin there.  

guruji

guruji

Sri K. Pattabhi Jois at The Shala, Winter 2002

वन्दे गुरूणां चरणारविन्दे
सन्दर्शित स्वात्म सुखाव बोधे ।

vande gurūṇāṁ caraṇāravinde
sandarśita svātma sukhāva bodhe

I bow to the lotus feet of our great teachers,
who uncovers our true self and awakens happiness