Friday, September 24, 2010

Indian Students From the Early Days

The book contains only a few.

Here's - yes! - one more:

This is from my 2009 interview with Dr. R. Chandrasekhara, who practiced with Guruji in the 1960s and later moved to the Chicago suburbs:

“I started learning yoga in 1960 after a friend of mine introduced me to my guru, Shree Pattabhi Jois. I started on a Vijaya Dashami [Dasara Festival] day and spent seven years before I had to come to USA. “I started studying with him at the Sanskrit College (1960) then continued from ‘63 to ‘67 at his house in Lakshmipuram. He treated me as his son, and I became extended family.

“We had to practice on a bare floor because the Sanskrit College did not provide any carpet. We used one towel. Later, we all contributed for the prison inmates to weave a coconut coir carpet.

“His hands-on teaching was exemplary. He taught from 5 a.m. till 9 a.m. and again from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. tirelessly. He shaped the student’s body to perfection. He taught me well, and I mastered in three years. We gave one demonstration first of a kind in my home town (Holenarasipur) during Ganesha festival. We did not have any camera to take pictures. After he retired, he moved to Lakshmipuram location.

“Steadily the number of students increased, both local and from abroad. He taught me free because I was a student without any income, and I was one of the family. Adjectives fail to describe his magnanimity--always smiling and had profound knowledge of Patanjali’s system. His wife had the same name as my mother (Savitramma) and always made very good coffee for me. It was a devastating blow for him when she suddenly passed away....I happened to visit him to invite him my son’s wedding around the time his wife passed away. I attended his wife’s death ceremony, and he was very gracious to attend my son’s wedding.

“He paid a visit in Illinois when he made his first trip to USA [in 1975]. After much persuasion, he wrote Yoga Mala. We all helped in publishing. Even though I pushed him to write intermediate and advanced asanas, and Patanjali’s book, plus the Tibetan medicine he learnt from his guru Shree Krishnamacharya at Manas Sarovar, he did not complete.

“He has left a legacy of students to carry on his mission. May his soul ultimately merge in the universal soul.”


  1. oh i love reading your blog, i always get some little bit of information or inspiration that helps me on my yoga way .. .. thank you x

  2. Dear エスタ,
    You are so welcome.
    X Om,