From the NYN Bookshelf...

One of my very favorite things about preparing to lead teacher training is that I get to dive in and re-read all of the required texts. I love this because no matter how many times I read them, I always learn- and retain- something new. Right now I am falling in love again with The Secret Power of Yoga by Nischala Joy Devi.

The Secret Power of Yoga is a deliciously heart-centered translation of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras- the primary text that outlines yoga philosophy. "Sutra" (related to the word suture) in Sanskrit implies a thread that strings things together. The Yoga Sutras, written thousands of years ago, is in its pure form simply a collection of 196 verses or aphorisms. Most English translations offer commentary explaining their meaning. Right now, this one is my very favorite!

I love this oh-so-approachable rendition of the Sutras:

  • for its ORGANIZATION. Devi’s introduction offers the perfect, simple foundation of knowledge- and its logic unfolds with as much intuitive grace as the Sutras themselves.

  • for its HEART-CENTERED FOCUS. By the second Sutra (her translation: “Yoga is the uniting of consciousness in the heart.”), it is clear that she filters this ancient guide through the eyes of love! She takes something that can seem pretty daunting and dogmatic and infuses it with the love I have experienced through my own practice.

  • for its PRACTICAL RELEVANCE. This may be why I love it most of all! She offers practices and exercises to bring the philosophy to life right here, right NOW- for YOU. Her focus on the way the teachings were meant to be understood- by being PRACTICED rather than simply studied- had me completely hooked in chapter one. Devi’s writing assures us that this yoga is as modern as it is ancient. It is timeless. And it is not merely a path for the cave-dwelling ascetic. This is New Yoga Now!

Next time you are here, check it out from our lending library. You won’t be sorry!



Kendall Beene