I begin this blog with salutations to Guruji BKS IYengar.
The Grand Master of yoga- a formidable legend.
His very presence inspires awe and reverence and to yoga practioners like me he is literally GOD!
I still remember my first encounter with this 95 year old iconic Teacher of teachers.
It was a chilly morning at 9am in Pune, India. I walk into the women’s class which guruji conducts every week day without fail.
He is already in the Hall at the far end doing his practice propped up in Virasan or the Hero’s pose which requires an intense flexion of the knees.
How does he do it at his age?
The class begins for about 100 women in the room with TRIKONASAN the famous triangle pose. Guruji conducts the class as he practices whilst grand daughter Abhijata leads by calling out instructions for him.
Guruji the perfectionist is not happy with the way we are doing the pose and makes us do it again. And again. And again.We repeat Trikonasan at least 10 more times.
He still doesnt let up. With a voice filled with irritation and anger at our mediocre Trikonasans the room fills up with an air of palpable tension. Abhijatpa struggles to repeat guruji’s minutest corrections.
The class goes on into an hour and we are still at Trikonasan. Everyone hopes guruji is going to move on to other asanas.
With a determined persistence but clearly with a view to improve our trikonasan he continues quite oblivious to our aches and pains after so many repetitions
It is focus on the hips; the calf muscles; the weight on the feet; on the qudratus lumborum; external rotations; the turn of the head; the gaze of the eyes; the flow of consciousness; the steady state; the intensity; and on and on…fir the next full hour.
At the end of the session most of us could barely walk back out of the hall!
For guruji its-always back to trikonasan- a template for perfect body alignment.
When asked why he does the Trikonasan again and again.
His famous reply: ” i never ever repeat the same trikonasan”
I bow my head with reverence.