Yoga guru B K S Iyengar

Yoga guru B K S Iyengar

“He made me the yoga teacher I am today” repeated the Yogacharya for the third time now, referring to the great B K S Iyengar. Ever since he was reminded of Guruji’s birthday that’s coming up this month, he seems to be lost in thought. His replies to my queries come delayed with a far-away look in his eyes.

 “Those eight months I spent with Guruji seems more and more important with each passing year. I remember every instruction and advice he gave me during those months. The tone he used, his facial expression and his body language – they’re written in my memory like carvings on a stone. And each instruction that was given to me manifests in different ways every time” he mused. No wonder Bharath remembers the legendary B K S Iyengar with such reverence and love. Guruji’s mere presence – not just teachings, was that powerful and life changing.

Bellur Krishnamachar Sundararaja Iyengar, popularly known as B K S Iyengar was born on 14th of December 1918 in Bellur, a small town in the state of Karnataka. Due to poverty and malnutrition, Iyengar suffered from many diseases in his childhood. He grew up to be a weak and sickly teenager.

He got a chance to learn yoga for the first time from his brother-in-law yogi Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya. He was a strict teacher and to Iyengar, unapproachable. Krishnamacharya apparently did not believe Iyengar had the talent in him to become a good practitioner and a teacher. Hence, he was often hard on Iyengar and tasked him with household chores.

They say great pressure and difficulties bring out the best in a man. And that’s exactly what happened in the case of B K S Iyengar. Over time, he proved his commitment to learning yoga as he found tremendous improvements in his health. He was sent to Pune to teach yoga. But the tough phase didn’t end there either. He continued to struggle with his life. 

The turning point came when he met the famous violinist Yehudi Menuhin. Menuhin introduced Iyengar to the west and the journey towards his international recognition began.

The rest, as we all know, is history!

B.K.S.Iyengar

P.S. Here, I share with you a video we found on YouTube – Patanjali temple at Bellur built by Guruji.

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