Keen on Yoga Podcast

The Keen On Yoga Podcast, hosted by Adam Keen.

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Latest Episodes

Ep 176 Adam Keen – Don’t Have Time For An Ashtanga Practice?

Ep 176 Adam Keen – Don’t Have Time For An Ashtanga Practice?

Adam discusses the concept of short forms in Ashtanga Yoga. He explains that while the traditional practice involves doing the entire series every day, it is not always practical or beneficial. 

Key Points

Short forms in Ashtanga Yoga can be a sensible approach when time, energy, or inspiration are limited.

Variation in practice is important to prevent stagnation and maintain enthusiasm.

Short forms should still incorporate the principles of posture, counter posture, building, and vinyasa.

Grounding and ending the practice with a focus on the parasympathetic nervous system is essential.

Practitioners should listen to their bodies and make adjustments to their practice as needed.

 

 

Ep. 174 Daniela Bevilacqua – Hatha Yoga, Tapas and Sadhus

Ep. 174 Daniela Bevilacqua – Hatha Yoga, Tapas and Sadhus

Daniela Bevilacqua, a research associate at the University of SOAS in London, speaks about the Hatha Yoga tradition, the past lack of research and the recent surge of interest in the subject. 

https://www.yogicstudies.com/ys-103 | @dhanya_83

Key Points

·      Hatha Yoga texts have been overlooked in the past, with more focus on the philosophical side of yoga.

·      The recent surge of interest in Hatha Yoga is due to scholars and practitioners addressing the textual sources with a different curiosity.

·      Tapas (austerities) and Hatha Yoga are closely connected, with tapas being a form of inner heat produced through austerities.

·      Sadhus practice extreme body modifications for various reasons, including spiritual devotion, burning karma, and the well-being of society.

·      Further research is needed to explore the historical development of Hatha Yoga and its connection to tapas. Sadhus claim to possess various supernatural powers, such as mind reading and walking on leaves.

·      Teachings and initiations within the sadhu community are often reserved for Indians and not foreigners.

·      Certain sadhu groups have a militant nature and have historically been involved in mercenary activities.

·      Female sadhus face challenges in a patriarchal society and often have to fight against societal norms and expectations. Women from educated, middle-class families are slowly gaining positions in Sadhu society.

·      Being fluent in Hindi and an outsider helped Daniela connect with the Sadhus and gain their trust.

·      Hatha Yoga in the Sadhu society has different layers of meaning, including tapas and manipulation of the subtle body.

·      Modern technology, such as smartphones and social media, has impacted the lives of Sadhus.

·      Daniela formed friendships with some Sadhus and continues to stay in touch with them. 

 

#175 Dr Ian Baker - Tantra Buddhism: A Body-Positive Approach to Spirituality

#175 Dr Ian Baker - Tantra Buddhism: A Body-Positive Approach to Spirituality

Dr. Ian Baker discusses the connection between Tibetan yoga and modern postural yoga, specifically Astanga yoga. He explores the origins of postural yoga in Tibet and the Himalayan world, highlighting the common elements and different emphases between traditions. He also delves into the practices of Tibetan yoga, such as Hatha Yoga, Tantra, and the subtle body, which focus on the circulation of prana and the transformation of metabolic heat into mystic fire. 

Connect with Ian Baker

👉 Website: https://ianbakerjourneys.wordpress.com 

👉 Instagram: @ianbaker108 

Connect with Keen on Yoga

👉 Website: www.keenonyoga.com

👉 Instagram:  @keen_on_yoga | @adam_keen_ashtanga

👉 Work Enquiries: info@keenonyoga.com 

Key Points

Tibetan yoga and modern postural yoga share common elements and different emphases.

The practices of Tibetan yoga focus on the circulation of prana and the transformation of metabolic heat into mystic fire.

Tapas (heat) is an important aspect of yoga practice, burning away afflictive emotions and expanding our sense of self.

The origins of postural yoga can be traced back to Tibet and the Himalayan world. Tantric Buddhism originated from the exchange of knowledge along ancient trade routes, such as the Silk Roads.

The cultivation of inner fire, or tummo, is a common practice in various traditions, including the Wim Hof method and ancient Chinese Yangshen traditions.

Transformative heat is associated with powerful goddesses in both Hindu tantra and tantric Buddhist texts.

Tantra embraces a body-positive approach, celebrating sensory awareness and the potential of the human body.

 

Ep. 173 Adam Keen – Balancing Tradition in Ashtanga Yoga

Ep. 173 Adam Keen – Balancing Tradition in Ashtanga Yoga

(www.keenonyoga.com | @adam_keen_ashtanga )

Adam explores the concept of tradition in Ashtanga Yoga. He defines tradition as a way of working, a pattern carried over from the old to the new.  

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Connect

👉 Website: www.keenonyoga.com

👉 Instagram:  @keen_on_yoga | @adam_keen_ashtanga

👉 Work Enquiries: info@keenonyoga.com 

Key Points

Tradition in Ashtanga Yoga is a way of working, a pattern that is carried over from the old to the new.

Tradition needs to be contextualized and adapted to suit the modern epoch and the needs of the current age.

Yoga asana and philosophy are context-sensitive and need to evolve to suit the values and understanding of the modern world.

There is a balance between tradition and non-tradition, where pragmatism and maintaining an ideal coexist.

Belonging to a tradition can provide a sense of support and community, but it is important to critically evaluate and adapt the tradition to suit individual needs.

 

Ep. 172 Celest Pereira – The Power of Suggestion and Pain Perception

Ep. 172 Celest Pereira – The Power of Suggestion and Pain Perception

 Celest Pereira –  (www.celestpereira.com | @celestpereirapt )

Adam and Celest discuss the topic of pain and its relationship to the brain. They explore the idea that pain is not solely felt in the body, but rather is an output of the brain. 

Support Keen on Yoga

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👉 PayPal: https://paypal.me/adamandtheresa

👉 Subscribe, like and share our videos, it helps us a lot

 Connect

👉 Website: www.keenonyoga.com

👉 Instagram:  @keen_on_yoga | @adam_keen_ashtanga

👉 Work Enquiries: info@keenonyoga.com 

Key Points

·      Pain is not solely felt in the body, but is an output of the brain.

·      Pain is a communication tool used by the brain to alter behavior and promote safety.

·      Outputs can be both safety outputs (like pain) and empowering outputs.

·      The biopsychosocial model of pain considers the biological, psychological, and social factors that contribute to pain. The brain is a highly suggestive organ that can influence pain perception.

·      Empowering language and positive suggestions can have a significant impact on pain management.

·      The placebo effect is a real and powerful phenomenon that should be explored and utilized.

·      Movement is medicine and can help in pain management. It is important to keep moving and try different forms of movement.

·      Subtle interventions can have profound effects on the body and brain.

·      Finding joy in activities outside of studying or work is important for overall well-being.

 

 

 

#171 Adam Keen - Are we practicing Patanjali's yoga?

#171 Adam Keen - Are we practicing Patanjali's yoga?

#171 Adam Keen - Are we practicing Patanjali's yoga?

(www.keenonyoga.com | @adam_keen_ashtanga)

Adam explores the question of what kind of practice we are doing in modern yoga. He discusses whether we are practicing Patanjali's yoga and how it aligns with our current aims and aspirations. Adam highlights that Patanjali's yoga does not focus much on asana and aims to control the senses and transcend the suffering of the world. He also delves into the concept of Dharma and its importance in yoga philosophy. Adam touches on the evolution of yoga and the inclusion of dynamic asana in modern practice. He concludes by discussing the influence of tantric yoga and its emphasis on using the body as a vessel of knowledge.

Key Points

  • ·      Modern yoga practice differs from Patanjali's yoga in terms of its focus on dynamic asanas and its aim to live in unity and connection with the world.
  • ·      Dharma, the objective principles of life, is the basis of yoga philosophy and guides our actions and attitudes towards the world.
  • ·      The inclusion of dynamic asana in modern yoga can be seen as a way to use the body as a vessel of knowledge and to live in harmony with the world.
  • ·      Tantric yoga offers a body-positive approach and emphasizes the awakening of energy and the exploration of esoteric practices.
  • ·      Modern yoga is an evolution of traditional yoga practices, incorporating elements from Patanjali's yoga and tantric yoga.

 

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Ep. 170 Richard Rosen – Exploring the Meaning of Yoga Beyond Asana

Ep. 170 Richard Rosen – Exploring the Meaning of Yoga Beyond Asana

Richard Rosen (www.m-yoga.org/richard-rosen  | @richardrosenyoga)

Adam interviews Richard Rosen, a yoga teacher and author, about his background in yoga and his book, Yoga FAQ. They discuss the evolution of yoga texts, the influence of yoga on Western psychology, and the potential for yoga to suppress emotions. They also explore the role of asana in yoga, the trend of yoga anatomy in classes, and the need for assessing students and structuring classes effectively. 

SUPPORT US

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CONNECT WITH US

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👉 Work Enquiries: info@keenonyoga.com 

This conversation covers various topics related to yoga, including accessibility and challenges, the importance of beginner's courses, the practice of pranayama, the significance of savasana, meditation and concentration, the relevance of Sanskrit in yoga, and influences on modern yoga. Richard Rosen shares his insights and experiences, highlighting the need for a balanced and patient approach to yoga. He also discusses his guilty pleasure of writing silly poetry and draws inspiration from various writers and books.

 

Takeaways

Yoga is more than just asana; it is a comprehensive practice encompassing philosophy, meditation, and self-discovery.

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, while a foundational text, can be seen as life and world-denying, and may not fully align with modern yoga practices.

The Vedas, Upanishads, and other ancient texts provide valuable insights into the history and philosophy of yoga, but they can be challenging to read and interpret.

The popularity of yoga has led to the evolution of different styles and approaches, and teachers need to have a solid understanding of the tradition and the needs of their students.

Yoga anatomy can be useful for teachers, especially in therapeutic contexts, but it should not overshadow the broader aspects of yoga practice. Yoga should be accessible to all, but it is important to approach it cautiously and seek proper guidance to avoid injury or discouragement.

Beginner's courses can provide a solid foundation for yoga practice and help new students ease into the practice gradually.

Pranayama, the practice of breath control, can be challenging to teach and may require patience and perseverance from both the teacher and the student.

Savasana, the relaxation pose, is an essential part of yoga practice and can help develop self-awareness and a witness consciousness.

Meditation and concentration are integral to yoga and can be practised both on and off the mat.

Learning Sanskrit can deepen one's understanding of yoga and its traditional texts, but it is not necessary for all practitioners.

Various individuals and schools, including B.K.S. Iyengar, Pattabhi Jois, and Indra Devi, have had significant influences on modern yoga.

Richard Rosen finds joy in writing silly poetry and draws inspiration from writers such as Ian Banks, Stanislaw Lem, and José Saramago.

 

"Yoga doesn't affect the union, it reveals a union that pre-existed and will always exist."

"In any meditation practice, the world should be included in the meditation."

"I'm a little bit unhappy with flow classes."

"We can't put it to rights here, but yeah."

"Nobody wants to breathe."

"There's consequences often times."

 

 

 

#169 Adam Keen – Exploring the Modern Mysore Tradition of Ashtanga Yoga

#169 Adam Keen – Exploring the Modern Mysore Tradition of Ashtanga Yoga

Adam Keen – Exploring the Modern Mysore Tradition of Ashtanga Yoga                              

( www.keenonyoga.com | @adam_keen_ashtanga)

Adam discusses the modern Mysore tradition of Ashtanga yoga. He explores the early days of Krishnamacharya in the Mysore Palace and the emergence of a dynamic form of yoga. 

SUPPORT US

👉 Subscribe, like and share our videos, it helps us a lot

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👉 Become a Patron for €10 monthly: https://keenonyoga.com/membership/

 

CONNECT WITH US

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👉 Work Enquiries: info@keenonyoga.com

Key Points

·      The modern Mysore tradition of Ashtanga yoga emerged with Krishnamacharya in the Mysore Palace, where a dynamic form of yoga started to take shape.

·      The Ashtanga tradition is a modern tradition that has evolved, with influences from various teachers and adaptations to suit different contexts and individuals.

·      The sequences in Ashtanga yoga are not fixed and rigid, but rather a general method that can be adapted to each individual's body and needs.

·      The emphasis on specific details and postures in the modern Ashtanga tradition is a recent innovation and not a fundamental aspect of the practice.

·      Understanding the historical roots and context of the Ashtanga tradition is important, but ultimately, the effectiveness of the practice should be judged based on individual experience and results.

 

 

#168 Laura von Ostrowski – Unlocking The Power Of Yoga: Embodiment And The Yoga Sutras

#168 Laura von Ostrowski – Unlocking The Power Of Yoga: Embodiment And The Yoga Sutras

( https://uni-hamburg.academia.edu/LauravonOstrowski | @yoganerds_de )

Adam and Laura discuss the application of the Yoga Sutras to modern yoga practice. Laura's PhD focused on how the Yoga Sutras can be applied to the physical practice of Ashtanga yoga. They explore the concept of embodiment and how it relates to the classical philosophy of the Yoga Sutras. They also discuss the idea of concentration and absorption in modern practice, and how it may differ from the traditional interpretation of Patanjali's teachings.

Laura emphasises the importance of observing the mind and finding practices that lead to heightened states of concentration. They also touch on the concept of the ego and its role in practice. The conversation explores the different perspectives on interpreting the Yoga Sutras, including the emic and etic approaches.

"My PhD was about observing how in the 21st century Patanjali is connected to the physical practice, especially to Ashtanga yoga."

"How do these practices get us into a state of concentration and absorption?"

"Flow state is not what Patanjali meant with Samadhi, but maybe it can be deemed as a small Samadhi."

"What we're doing is, I believe, ethic, is that right?"

"We're looking from the outside."

"We're not trying to lose the ego."

SUPPORT US

👉 Subscribe, like and share our videos, it helps us a lot

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👉 Support us directly: https://paypal.me/adamandtheresa

👉 Become a Patron for €10 monthly: https://keenonyoga.com/membership/

CONNECT WITH US

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👉 Work Enquiries: info@keenonyoga.com

 

Key Points

·      The Yoga Sutras can be applied to modern yoga practice, but it's important to consider the context and adapt the teachings to fit our current lifestyles.

·      Observing the mind and finding practices that lead to heightened states of concentration can be valuable in modern practice.

·      The concept of the ego in yoga practice is complex and can be interpreted differently. It's important to find a balance between honouring the teachings of Patanjali and adapting them to our modern worldview.

·      The Yamas, or ethical guidelines, can be seen as contemplation points rather than strict rules to follow. It's important to reflect on how they apply to our lives and make conscious choices.

·      Reading the commentaries on the Yoga Sutras can provide a deeper understanding of the text, but it's helpful to have guidance from a teacher or someone knowledgeable in Sankhya philosophy.

·      Recognizing that the Yoga Sutras have been interpreted and adapted throughout history can provide mental clarity and a sense of relaxation when exploring their teachings. There are different perspectives on interpreting the Yoga Sutras, including the emic (within the culture) and etic (cross-cultural) approaches.

·      It is important to question and critically examine the text rather than blindly following it.

·      The concept of ego should not be eliminated, as it is necessary for engagement and living fully in the world.

·      Vivekananda played a significant role in bringing the Yoga Sutras to the modern context, but his promotion of disembodied practices should be reconsidered.

·      Curiosity is a valuable trait that allows for open-mindedness and continuous learning.

·      Taking time to simply be and do nothing can be a guilty pleasure that provides a break from the busyness of life.

Bio of Keen on Yoga Podcast

The Keen On Yoga Podcast, hosted by Adam Keen, offers a unique and in-depth exploration of Ashtanga yoga and related subjects. Adam engages in deep discussions with Ashtanga yoga teachers and individuals involved in wellness, inquiry, diet, and other fascinating topics that pique his interest.

Unlike formulaic interviews, the Keen On Yoga Podcast takes a different approach. Adam does not follow a predetermined list of questions, instead fostering open-ended conversations that allow guests to freely share their perspectives and approaches to their subject matter. The focus is on delving into meaningful and thought-provoking topics rather than surface-level discussions or personal life stories. As a result, the conversations on the podcast often reveal unexpected insights and honest exchanges.

Having started during the first lockdown of 2021, the Keen On Yoga Podcast is approaching its hundredth episode. With a commitment to releasing one episode per week, Adam and the podcast team remain dedicated to bringing a diverse range of voices to inspire and support listeners on their yoga journey. The podcast aims to provide valuable insights and perspectives from a wide range of experts to enhance the listener's understanding and connection with yoga.

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