I am reading (a quarter way through)  Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda.  I’ve been getting into yoga recently and decided to read this book for inspiration. My teachers have Yogananda’s picture all over the studio. They love this guy.
Does anyone have gurus anymore? Do you?


4 Responses to “YOGANANDA.”

  1. Jack Says:

    Yes. Some people still do. Mine is Swami Shankarananda Giri, from Orissa India. His guru was Narayananda Giri, a friend and fellow disciple with Yogananda under Sri Yukteswar.

    Having a guru does not mean you “hand your life over to them and do whatever they say”. That is a mistaken western understanding. Having a guru is having a coach in the art of consciousness studies. Their main value is that they teach technique, not flowery statements about life! Like someone training for the Olympics, or a beginning concert pianist. The help I receive from my guru is very specific instructions on meditation, and how to cultivate more awareness of my true self by releasing my identification with my physical body. I only communicate with him about once every 6 years, and when I do, he gives me, through an initiation process, a few more meditation things to try out.

    I am a self employed, self assured business man, with no desire nor need whatsoever to be “led”, to “hand my life over to a guru”, or to “follow obediently” the dictates of another man. My Guru has never once asked this of me, nor would he ever do such. He just wants to help me to get good at meditation and self awareness. He has never asked for one cent from me, for any material thing, or any help whatsoever. Everything he has taught me, he has taught me for free.

    You may find it interesting to know that Yogananda, and most Yogis, do not do very many Yoga Asanas at all. The notable exceptions are Patabi Joise, and B.K Iyengar, but these men are not representative of the majority Yogis in India. Kriya Yoga, the Yoga described in “Autobiography of a Yogi” is a form of Kundalini meditation, not a series of asanas. Asanas are great – I myself do them – but they are just a tiny branch of the Yoga tree. The Western Yoga movement has completely turned it around, and made asanas the trunk of the tree.

    Om Suasti Astu

  2. kellyr Says:

    Jack, I very much appreciated your thoughtful comments. Thank you for sharing your experiences. I love that there are so many branches on the yoga tree. Best, Kelly

  3. Raquel Raney Says:

    I am also reading this book. ..

  4. Sri Says:

    I read this book a while back and subscribed to lessons for kriya yoga. I received them for around 2years , read them but never into serious practice of them. I wish you all the best for your search and progress on this path.

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