So many Yoga techniques are available nowadays, but so often we move nowadays in our spiritual path like if we were walking on speedwalk in a fitness class ; using our energy rather than getting some light. Why is this so ? As the west is getting more and more interested in Yoga, it takes the part of Yoga that is fiting with its own culture, and let away the rest. Like when we do shopping, we take a little bit of posture, breathing, and we let the mantra and the deep and intimate relationship with the teacher considering even that guru is a bad word.
A guru is the one who will burn -ru- our heaviness -gu-. Instead of taking away our power, he will greatly empower us into our life through an appropriate relationship and practise that will burn our ego, fear, etc. Inded, the practises are traditionally done under the safe guidance of a good teacher (sadguru) in a very safe, private and intimate relationship (gopanīyam).
The reason is the following : the teacher has followed the path, he knows the way and can lead us throught the difficulties we will face. Having practised a lot under a guidance himself, he understands the needs of a student and built a proper practise to help him to remove and attenuate his own obstacles. To understand better this essential point, I would like to give a metaphor. Yoga practises are like a car. Having a car alone doesn’t allow us to go where we want, unless we have a good guide who knows the way and how to deal with the Indian Road, where to stop to eat, where to reach a place, etc.
The beauty of the Indian tradition is that the lineage has been unbroken since the Antiquity, when the Yogic kowledge was born, until now. This is as amazing as imagining some Egyptian priest showing you the secret of the pyramids. This lineage is acknowledged many time in the haṭha-yoga-pradīpika, the yoga-sūtras and all the old text. Sankrit language have a special word to describe a teacher, he is the one that has gone through to the end (antevasin) of the way and then can lead other: an ācārya. He stayed a long time with his teacher and is now able to teach.
Nowadays, I met many students of Yoga who were practising Yoga techniques since a long time who came in India to meet Dr. Kausthub Desikachar in order to improve their yogic knowledge. Most of them are so happy as they are understanding that a very big part of their path was missing without a proper teacher. They now progress in their Yoga practises as well as in their own personnal and professionnal life and even have the strenght to fulfill some of their old challenges. This is only possible throught the contact of a person who, in the framework of the relationship, let go of his own ego open his heart and help the student to connect with that beautiful space inside the heart that we call nowadays love and allow us to thrive in our full potential.
The uniqueness of the Viniyoga® tradition of T Krishnamacharya and TKV Desikachar, is that the tradition is very anchored in the Guru-Paramapara for over twelve centuries. When a tradition is anchored for so long, it sure is a sign that the heart connection is indeed strong. And this is indeed the potent power of the Guru Parampara, which is so strongly visible in the Viniyoga tradition.
Kausthub Desikachar and Philip Rigo