Happy Birthday, Yogacharya B. K. S. Iyengar!
Born December 14th, 1918 the “Lion of Pune” turns a young 94 years of age today. The 11th of 13 children, Bellur Krishnamachar Sundararaja grew up battling multiple diseases including malaria, tuberculosis, typhoid fever, and general malnutrition. At 15 years old he moved to Mysore to live and study yoga asana with his brother-in-law Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya (whose name you might recognize), where he was able to overcome many of his childhood maladies. In 1937 he moved to Pune to start teaching yoga on his own and continue molding what we know today as Iyengar Yoga, which became the basis for his book Light on Yoga (1966), also referred to as the “bible of yoga.”
At 94 he still practices every day.
The photo above is from his birthday party via the BKS Iyengar Yogashala in India. Check out their facebook page for more photos of the celebration.
“Yoga teaches us to cure what need not be endured and endure what cannot be cured.” B.K.S. Iyengar
Here’s some cool footage of B.K.S. Iyengar back in the day, and don’t miss his film “Yoga: The Ultimate Freedom” below.
Classic footage of BKS Iyengar in his early 20’s from a 1938 newsreel, and just about 45 years later in a 1987 master class:
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