Thanks to BhaktaJose for posting this uplifting video of the Siksastakam Mantra by Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu as sung by Gaura Vani & AKS. It is listed as " Moods of Kirtan " on the new Yoga CD released by Putumayo. The video was filmed in Mayapur & Vrindavan , India by Prananatha Dasa. Param vijayate Sri Krsna sankirtanam.
Stephanie Syman , the author of the recently published " The Subtle Body : The Story of Yoga in America " has aptly done another bit of yogic witnessing in her recent blog post for the Wall Street Journal entitled " How Yoga Sold Out ".
Here is an excerpt :
" With the near simultaneous release last month of “Eat Pray Love” the movie and a Toe Sox ad campaign featuring a naked woman (save for her “sox”) in various yoga poses, there is no denying we’ve exhausted yoga’s commercial possibilities.
No doubt new yoga tchotchkes will be produced, and at least two more yoga memoirs are set for release this fall. But these are all variations on a theme. Like “Star Wars” or Matisse, the merchandising, advertising, and profiteering of yoga has run the full gamut, from action figures to deluxe vacations to how-to-books that apply yoga to almost every human endeavor (my personal favorite: “The Yoga of Time Travel”)."
My own layman's term for this Kali Yugic phenomenon is the "Martha-Stewartification" of yoga. Where fans & followers are deluded into thinking they are empowering their own creativity but are actually being suckered into purchasing all the cheap , unrecyclable , and useless junk that corny TV pundits & their sponsors shill out .
Just check out every yoga magazine's holiday issue. Each year raises the bar on gift giving absurdity.
Back to that Toe Sox ad , it is down right ridiculous. Think of all the jokes made about tourists who wear socks with their flip-flops ; you get the picture. Ridiculous for a so called "yoga instructor" to use this as a vehicle to promote her agenda for celebrity and fame ; when she should know better.
Here's the link to the rest of this timely & well written post :
Thanks to World Music label Putumayo for sending an advance copy of their new release " Yoga ".
Yoga instructor and musician Sean Johnson , founder of Wild Lotus Yoga and the Wild Lotus Band in New Orleans , collaborated with them on the compilation & contributed a cut to the album as well.
The CD is meant to be used as a soundtrack at classes or as an aid to meditation.
The new discoveries which have been making me hit the replay button in the car are Karnamrita Dasi / " Devaki " ( bhakti & bhajan personified ) , Gaura Vani & As Kindred Spirits / " Moods of Kirtan " ( Chaitanya Siksastakam ) & the contemplative " Offering Chant " by the Bhutanese Lama Gyurme accompanied by French pianist Jean-Philippe Rykiel.
Obrigado to Denisecostagopala from Sao Paulo for posting all these vdos of the recently concluded Kirtan 36 Horas in Nova Gokula Brasil. Sankirtan is the practice of congregational singing of the holy names of the Lord , especially in public ,as an expression of Bhakti Yoga. Hence , a bhakta or devotee would cringe at ever being described as a "superstar kirtan walla". Just like the tag " superstar yoga instructor " , that would be totally self serving and MAYA ( Illusion ).
Jason Schramm of Detroit Yoga discusses the " do whatever you feel like attitude " that is spreading through US yoga . Case in point being, I was at vinyasa class this afternoon and the woman beside me was constantly performing asana that the teacher had not called. Albeit she couldn't understand what the asana was if it was called in Sanskrit ; her attitude was so symptomatic of EGO running unfettered. Her attempts to pull off Viparita Chakrasana ( while we were in Urdhva Danurasana ) and failing to do so in a series of loud crashes & thuds only served to call attention to her ignorance . At lunch with my teacher today , we were discussing these irritants that come up in class, and he thought we were bordering on being judgmental. I responded that it was more an instance of awareness versus judgement as we have to practice equanimity when confronted with aforementioned antics & irritants -
Dosa in the Mission is my new go-to place for Southern Indian food in San Francisco.
They serve up authentic idlis , uttapam , dosas & sambar in an Eastern minimalist setting .
When I am travelling , I find myself craving for at least 1 Indian meal . And I've been blessed to have stumbled upon several great lunch buffets in Atlanta , Seattle , Miami and the best one in Kitsilano , Vancouver.
Sri Krishna Janmastami was celebrated all over this Wednesday by a whole day of fasting , offerings & various acts of devotion. I managed to weather through the fast in spite of a bad case of the flu and a lunch meeting. The packed midnight arati at the temple and the prasad afterwards created an atmosphere of communal harmony. The sankirtana singing of the Jaya Radha Madhava Bhajan was a high point for me ; bhakti. This vdo is of Hari Das in Dallas from Janmastami 2009.