Light and trataka at the winter solstice

The winter solstice is a time, in the northern hemisphere, when nature sends us signs to rest and metaphorically hibernate. Yet we often do the opposite in December: rushing around buying lots of things, stocking up on food because the shops are closed for one or two days, travelling here and there despite the bad … Continue reading Light and trataka at the winter solstice

Incarnations radio programme

BBC Radio 4 is broadcasting Incarnations: India in 50 lives, every weekday for 50 days, with the episodes also available on iPlayer and to download as podcasts. Each episode is 15 minutes long and explores one of the 50 people, from ancient to modern times. I've not managed to set aside time to listen to … Continue reading Incarnations radio programme

What are the niyama and how do they relate to life today?

This month we turn to the second limb of yoga as outlined by Patanjali. (The first limb, yama, I covered in March.) The second limb is niyama, and as you can probably tell from the word, is closely liked to the yama. However, whereas yama have a slightly more external or social aspect to them … Continue reading What are the niyama and how do they relate to life today?

Documentary explores who owns yoga

A very interesting, thought-provoking, intelligent and unbiased documentary called 'Who Owns Yoga?' has recently been released by Al Jazeera English and is available to watch online. It's only 50 minutes long yet manages to address thorny issues such as the modern commercialisation of yoga (especially in the west), the trend for new 'types' of yoga … Continue reading Documentary explores who owns yoga

Yoga: the art of transformation exhibition

What is billed as the world's first yogic art exhibition has opened in Washington DC, America. "Yoga: The Art of Transformation" is on until January in the Sackler Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution's Museums of Asian Art and features items from over 25 museums and private collections from around the world. The exhibition visually traces … Continue reading Yoga: the art of transformation exhibition

Book review: The Dalai Lama’s cat

I have just finished reading The Dalai Lama's cat by David Michie. Although the front cover explicitly says this is a novel, it's not a novel in the conventional sense, not least because its narrator is a cat, but also because the 'plot' is rather light (cat abandoned, cat rescued, cat learns some Buddhist lessons) … Continue reading Book review: The Dalai Lama’s cat