Books, books, and more books! In the New Year I like to cull some of my library, but it’s really hard! I have so many books on Yoga, and I may not look at a book for several years, but when I need to look something up for reference, or revisit a concept I’d like to investigate furthur, I need that book handy!
I don’t mind reading novels on line, but I prefer to read all my Yoga books in a hard copy, where I’ve taken notes in the margins, highlighted certain porttions, or dog-earred different pages. Call me old fashioned. Yes, I am.
I’d like to share with you my top 10 books on Yoga, an update on a blog I wrote several years ago. Some are new to me, some are old favorites. I hope you will notice a couple of your favorites as well.
- Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, with commentary by Sri Swami Satchidananda. This is a keeper for sure. It spells out all of Yoga philosophy in short pity phrases, explained brilliantly by Satchidanandaji.
- Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha by Swami Satyananda Saraswati. This helpful manual by Satyanandaji covers all the basics.
- Yoga Nidra by Swami Satyananda Saraswati. A transforming practice coming back into vogue in the 2000’s.
- Touched By Fire by Pandid Rajmani Tigunait, successor to Swami Rama and head of the Himalaya Institute. A very inspiring story of his own path to the Divine.
- The Mind is Mightier Than the Sword by Lama Surya Das. A user-friendly guide to spiritual practice, with helpful chapters on integrating it into everyday life.
- The Complete Guide to Yin Yoga by Bernie Clark. I took his teacher training during the Covid summer and found his text invaluable to understanding the concepts of yin yoga. Many adaptations of the poses are offered, and how to sequence a class for others.
- Like This by Rumi. A collection of the sweetest poems or maybe prayers. My favorite “Stay in the spiritual fire. Let it cook you”. A book for pondering when you need a break from the world.
- Spiritual Experiences by Swami Sivananda. Who wouldn’t want to read “What is Samadhi?” again and again?
- The Four Desires by Rod Stryker. Invaluable for his approach to Yoga Nidra, a life changing practice.
- Beyond Words, edited by Lester Alexander. Les took the first 10 years of recorded lectures of Swami Satchidananda and beautifully added the charming line drawings of artist and devotee Peter Max to create a book of “greatest hits”.
There you have it. There are so many more books of greatness out there, but these are my current favorites. These books are a great comfort to me during the shut-down, giving me hours of inspiration as I have more time for practice and study.