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21st Century Yoga: Culture, Politics, and Practice Paperback – September 19, 2012
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About the Author
Carol Horton, Ph.D., is the author of Yoga Ph.D.: Integrating the Life of the Mind with the Wisdom of the Body (Kleio, 2012); and Race and the Making of American Liberalism (Oxford University Press, 2005). Roseanne Harvey is the former editor of the leading Canadian yoga magazine, Ascent; founder of the popular blog, It's All Yoga, Baby; and co-director of Yoga Festival Montreal.
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Top Customer Reviews
Oh, forget to mention...I am not even a Yoga-fan. I have taken two, maybe three, yoga classes and wasted most of each class giggling uncomfortability. While this book, certainly has inspired me to give yoga a second chance, its value and meaning are not restricted to yoga devotees!
This review is getting a little long but let me list some of the crucial topics that the essays in this book touch upon: Addiction, Anorexia, The Extension of Yogic Principles and Practices to the Outside Community, War: Yoga as a Means of Returning Equilibrium to Our World, Composition and Creation Facilitated by the Practice of Yoga, and Yoga and Violence.
I highly recommend this book for anyone searching for a way to lead a more meaningful and compassionate life. If you or anyone close to you harbors vague ideas about wanting to 'improve the world' but have no idea how to go about it or if it is even possible: this collection contains an invaluable dialogue providing fecund and fertile ground for reflection and discussion!
The holidays are still a couple of months away but I cannot think of a more perfect gift than 21st Century Yoga!
A good, but not great book.
Would highly recommend this to anyone who likes a "political" view of yoga and the west.
The questions were raised: Is the tradition of ancient yoga relevant in today's modern society? What is the State of the Union of yoga?
Was there a definitive answer to these questions? No. But, these essays made me think, which is the intention of the book. I believe deeply in the tradition of yoga. Personally, I don't like seeing the practice watered down and asana (physical postures) being the main focus. Some of the contributors addressed this, while others took a more political approach to the whole of yoga. A couple of them irritated me, while with others, I felt a kinship.
Whether I saw eye to eye with them or not, all of the contributors offered well thought out, passionate essays based on their personal experiences. Anorexia, war, drug abuse, beauty, yoga as responsible business, financial crisis, and building community were among of the topics discussed. What makes this work is that these are not big name, celebrity teachers, so there is less expectation of hearing about a particular agenda. It feels fresher, like voices from the crowd.
I could go through each chapter and give my opinions in this review, but I want you to read it without my bias. This is an important book for modern yogis, especially for those of us who teach. There are viewpoints offered that should be discussed if we want yoga to continue as a vehicle for healing and community, and not be just a workout. In the final chapter, Angela Jamison suggests that we should keep "speaking openly about esoterica" to help us move through this confusing time in yoga. Just like we need DNA from our ancestors to be born in this physical body, we need the ancient traditions as building blocks in our modern practice.
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