May 20, 2017

About this Yoga Geek Design

The first word of Patanjali's Yoga Sutra is the word now - astha (अथ). The word "now" is a call for attention, a call for mindfulness, and has been central in the Yoga world from Ram Das' 1971 classic Be Here Now to Eckart Tolle's 1997 bestseller The Power of Now. It has been said that all of the remaining words of the Yoga Sutra are merely a footnote, that the essence of Yoga is found in this one word alone. Whether that is true or not is up to each of us to decide!

This sutra is only three words long, but it is deep, nuanced and evokes a mood of contemplation and inquiry. It has been translated and interpreted many different ways over the centuries and although we leave the last two words untranslated on this design we thought the first word should be translated. Whether on a t-shirt, tank top or sweatshirt, let this design speak to you and remind you of what matters. Now!

What this Sutra Means

Let's break it down and take a closer look. Hang in there... we're going to nerd out a bit here! (After all, we are Yoga Geek).

The design of your t-shirt consists of the three words of the first Sutra written in Devanagari script. Devanagari is the script in which ancient Sanskrit, Hindi, and other modern languages of India are written. The ancient language of Yoga looks like this:

 

Patanjali's Yoga Sutra 1.1:
अथ योग अनुशासनम्
The first word is atha (अथ):
अथ योग अनुशासनम्
The second word is yoga (योग):
अथ योग अनुशासनम्
The third word is anuśāsanam (अनुशासनम्)
(Pronounced a-noo-shah-sanam, with the emphasis on shah):
अथ योगाअनुशासनम्

Word-by-Word Translation

atha - अथ : now

yoga - योग : union, connecting, joining; from √ yuj (unite, join, connect employ, use)

anuśāsanam - अनुशासनम् : instruction, direction, teaching; anu (after, with) + śāsana from √śas (chastise, correct, restrain, teach)

 

The Yoga Sutras of Patañjali: A New Edition, Translation, and Commentary

Edwin F. Bryant
The Yoga Sutras of Patañjali: A New Edition, Translation, and Commentary"

Now, the teachings of yoga [are presented].


The Heart of Yoga: Developing a Personal Practice

T.K.V. Desikachar
The Heart of Yoga: Developing a Personal Practice

Here begins the authoritative instruction on Yoga.


The Yoga-Sutra of Patanjali: A New Translation with Commentary

Chip Hartranft
The Yoga-Sutra of Patanjali: A New Translation with Commentary

Now, the teachings of yoga.


Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

B. K. S. Iyengar
Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

With prayers for divine blessings, now begins an exposition of the sacred art of yoga.


Threads of Yoga: A Remix of Patanjali-s Sutra-s, with Commentary and Reverie

Matthew Remski
Threads of Yoga: A Remix of Patanjali-s Sutra-s, with Commentary and Reverie

We all inquire into yoga.


The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali: Commentary on the Raja Yoga Sutras

Swami Satchidananda
The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali: Commentary on the Raja Yoga Sutras

Now the exposition of Yoga is being made.


Raja Yoga

Swami Vivekananda
Raja Yoga

Now concentration is explained.


 


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