Breaking News: Swaha! I just got word this morning, via Twitter, that Sri K. Pattabhi Jois has passed away at his residence in India following a brief illness. He was 93. Full report at elephantjournal.com/pattabhijois with additional photos, anecdotes, remembrances, videos.
The passing of this beloved master and progenitor of modern yoga puts the weight of the future of yoga's integrity squarely on our shoulders--for it is in the West that this ancient tradition has taken root and most fully blossomed. For a video on "the future of yoga," with Ashtanga teacher Richard Freeman (and a horribly inexperienced interviewer, I'm a bit better now I hope), click here.
"If we practice the science of yoga, which is useful to the entire human community and which yields happiness both here and hereafter -- if we practice it without fail, we will then attain physical, mental, and spiritual happiness, and our minds will flood towards the Self."
...the popular system of "Ashtanga Yoga" that is widely practiced today...When Sri. K. Pattabhi Jois became a student of Krishnamacharya in 1927, he was also taught this particular method of practice. In the present day, these traditional asana sequences have been translated into the primary, intermediate, and advanced series that make up the Ashtanga Yoga practice.
Sri. K. Pattabhi Jois, who is affectionately called Guruji by his students, was born on the day of the full moon in July1915. He left home to embark on a twenty-five year period of study with his guru Krishnamacharya when he was only twelve years old. From 1937 to 1973, he taught at the Sanskrit College in Mysore, and in 1956, earned the title of Vidvan, or Professor. In 1948 Pattabhi Jois established the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute from his home in Laxmipuram. He took his first trip to the West in 1974, when he was invited to deliver a speech on yoga, in Sanskrit, at an international yoga conference held in South America. The following year, sponsored by a group of his North American students, Guruji traveled to California with his son Manju Jois. Over the last thirty years, as a result of his several trips to different parts of the world, and the efforts of his many dedicated students, the teachings of Ashtanga Yoga have spread, and its popularity persists...for more, click here.
Click the old photo, below, of the young Pattabhi Jois for a brief history of Ashtanga Yoga, founded by Sri. K Pattabhi Jois.