Table of Contents
- Preface by Georg Feuerstein 5
- Further Reading and Listening 7
- Chapter 1: Health Beyond Posture 9
- Chapter 2: The Philosophy of Posture, Posture as Philosophy 13
- Chapter 3: What Is Yoga? 17
- Chapter 4: Ten Fundamental Principles of Yoga 23
- Chapter 5: In Praise of the Philosophical Life 27
- Chapter 6: Why Study Yoga Philosophy? 31
- Chapter 7: The Seven Stages of Psychospiritual Maturation 33
- Chapter 8: A Bird’s-Eye View of the History of Yoga 35
- Chapter 9: The Yoga of the Vedas and Upanishads 47
- Chapter 10: The Bhagavad-Gītā and Its Teachings 63
- Chapter 11: The System of Patanjali’s Classical Yoga 83
- Chapter 12: Tantra: Revelation for the Kali-Yuga 111
- Chapter 13: The History and Theory of Hatha-Yoga 127
- Chapter 14: The Technology of Traditional Hatha-Yoga 141
- Chapter 15: Ethical Guidelines for Yoga Teachers 157
- Epilogue 159
Excerpt From the Preface by Georg Feuerstein:
. . . I have put together this manual in order to help teachers conducting a teacher training program to provide their students with the best possible materials for the required coverage of Yoga history/philosophy at the 200- and 500-hour levels. According to the Yoga Alliance’s recently revised standards, the former level allows for 30 hours and the latter level for 60 hours of Yoga philosophy teaching. This manual can readily be adapted for either level.
In addition to key essays on given topics, this publication also includes numerous “thought experiments” suitable for classroom work, and many pertinent quotations from Indian and Western Yoga authorities.
The materials are structured in a graduated fashion, so that even students without prior exposure to philosophy can follow the presentation. Above all, I have endeavored to make the ideas presented in this manual as applicable to daily life and practice as possible by providing questions for individual or group consideration as well as test questions that will help you determine whether you have assimilated the gist of the materials presented.
To learn new ideas, especially philosophical concepts, can be challenging. But, I trust, the written and graphic materials in this manual will make learning Yoga philosophy both easier and more enjoyable.
Yoga philosophy is profoundly existential, that is, it always addresses practitioners of Yoga (and everyone else) exactly where they are and shows them a way out of their present predicament of suffering, confusion, and spiritual blindness. Yoga is a tradition that is designed to lead us to greater freedom, happiness, and peace of mind.
May this manual help everyone to become the best possible Yoga practitioner and teacher of this ancient tradition of self-transformation.
It remains for me to cordially thank all those among our present or former TYS distance-learning students, including many Yoga teachers, who have given their constructive input on this manual. I have incorporated as many of their suggestions as seemed feasible, and this manual is definitely better because of their creative observations.
My special gratitude goes to Brenda, my wife, who not only proposed the idea of this manual to me but also impressed on me the importance of making it as didactic and accessible as possible. Always championing real change, she feels that this manual, together with my book Yoga Morality, is the most significant contribution I have made to the Yoga movement thus far. While I think it is safer to let teachers and students be the judge of this, I cannot but be beholden to her for encouraging me to apply my knowledge for the benefit of other Yoga practitioners, especially fledgling teachers of this great tradition.