BKS Iyengar, one of the last true yogis, turns 95 today. His legacy on yoga is beyond tremendous. He took yoga from his own country when it was akin to doing something that your grandfather did, like playing lawn croquet, and making it into a worldwide phenomenon. He began when he was 17 after a childhood of malaria and TB and used the discipline to cure himself from guidance from his brother in law, the Brhamin Krishnamacharya.
After many years of being poor, he continued steadfastly in his practice. It wasn’t until he was in his 50s until his practice started bearing financial fruits.
He published the foremost text of yoga – Light On Yoga, which continues to be relevant and thought provoking.
There are Iyengar studios in 57 countries throughout the world. To become certified in this style continues to be the most rigorous and disciplined.
When he turned 60, he was in two consecutive moped accidents rendered him unable to use his arms. He used yoga to heal them and now has complete range of motion in both arms.
In 2004, he was Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world.
At 95, he continues to practice 3 hours per day!
For those and many other reasons, today is an auspicious day. Happy birthday Guruji!
Here is a video of Iyengar during an intense practice…especially toward the end: