Those familiar with yoga teacher Baron Baptiste know that he trains many high-profile celebrities and athletes. Yet his message is the antithesis of the American obsession with wealth and fame. For Baptiste, personal transformation is about facing the abyss of our internal emptiness and recognizing all the ways we seek to fill the void with money, status and material possessions. Ultimately, this program offers readers a kick-butt chance to get started on a steadier and more lasting, internal form of fulfillment. "In the end yoga is not a magic cure-all, but the way challenges our bodies moves our stuck energy, clears our mind, and inspires us to seek and live in truth can be a catalyst for amazing spiritual growth," he writes. "Ultimately the yoga program found in the book is about developing a soulful perspective to the question that I hear nearly every day in my classroom: 'How did I get into this state, and how can I get out?'"
Baptiste divides his program into a six-week system. Each week focuses on a theme for transformation. For instance, Week One starts with the theme of "Presence." Baptiste suggests readers start with a daily 20-minute yoga practice. (His asanas are all gentle, but the mechanics may be challenging for readers completely new to yoga, although the pictures and lengthy captions will help.) He also suggests a beginning "balancing diet" (based on Ayurveda principles), and thematic meditations, which include a list of "excavation questions." One could argue that this book is even better than going on a 40-day retreat at one of Baptiste's yoga centers. The program is designed to be integrated into your life as you live it. Readers do the yoga and prepare the food in their homes, and contemplate the principles for enlightenment within the routines of daily life. In this way it has the potential to be a lasting and well integrated transformation. --Gail Hudson
Ana T. Forrest Founder of Forrest Yoga and owner of the Forrest Yoga Circle in Santa Monica Baron's fresh and synergistic approach to yoga has excited and turned on many people who previously thought yoga had nothing to offer them. He has contributed greatly to spreading the benefits of yoga in the United States. -- Review