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Yoga American Style Paperback – June 1, 2009
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In Yoga American Style, Prem Prakash takes a step back and helps Westerners understand the broader context of yoga as rooted in the Indian tradition. He begins by providing a survey of the different forms of yoga as practiced in India, giving pros and cons of each, such that each student can better decide which path might support their spiritual growth.
Then, the book continues with a series of meaningful, yet enjoyable short essays which help connect the American mind to aspects of yoga as described in traditional source texts including the Bhagavad Gita and Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. The book covers a wide range of psychological and mythological topics including: the Western/Indian creation stories, the duality of good & bad, the student / guru relationship, cultivation of consciousness, Karma, daily spiritual practice, how to deal with difficult feelings, forgiveness and how to relax in the midst of it all.
I especially commend this book for its accessibility. It is written for regular people to read and uses accessible language. Where the book uses Sanskrit words (the language of the source texts), it is careful to include meanings in parenthesis.
I have personally read this book three times - once when I was a relative yogic newbie and twice since my study of yoga has progressed over the years. Each time, I've found it enjoyable and insightful. I recommend it to anyone exploring this path, especially if you'd like to learn to be an American style, yet traditional yogi.