An American in Paris, reflecting on the Guru

The Fourth of July and Guru Purnima collide today.

Well, while reading Tim Miller’s post this week — which comes directly from Paris — they do for me. As you might guess, he talks about the meaning and value of Guru Purnima and Pattabhi Jois. As you might also guess, that means you kind of have to read it:

Today’s full moon occurs at 11:52amPDT in the nakshatra called Purvashada. The Vedic Deity that rules this nakshatra is called Apas, the Goddess of the Waters, and the type of energy associated with it is called Varchograhana Shakti—the power of invigoration—similar to what we feel when we bathe. The great yogi and philosopher, Adi Shankaracharya, equated water with Sattva–the spiritual quality of life. The primary motivation of Purvashada is Moksha, or liberation. This is an excellent time to reconnect with our inherent spiritual potential.

The full moon of July is Guru Purnima—the celebration of the spiritual teacher. Sri K. Pattabhi Jois was born on the full moon of July in 1915, and it was his destiny to become the Guru to thousands of Ashtanga Yoga practitioners all over the world, and to be known simply as “Guruji”.

I would probably wax poetic about Tim’s role as Guru to so many, but, well, I just did that.

I will note, and perhaps you’ve seen this, that Tim has this wonderful, simple T-shirt that reads, in block letters: GURU. He wears it — at least in my experience — on Thursdays, the day dominated by Jupiter, by the “heavy” planet in our solar system. As with much of Tim’s actions, it is both ironic and true. And it makes for great photo opps.

Posted by Steve

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Two Ashtangis write about their practice and their teachers.

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