The mighty Himalayas have been associated with saints and sages since times immemorial. The lofty solitary peaks and vast valleys full of natural beauty create the perfect situation for a calm meditation, hence that is perhaps the reason that many of the major teerthas or holy places are situated in the Himalayas. Today we will learn about one such lineage of teachings which have survived the litmus test of time and have been passed on from generation to generation.
It was nearly 1200 years ago that the Great Shankaracharya created five centers of his teachings, and one of those was named as Bharati tradition which is associated with the Shringeri Seat.
You might think that Bharati stands for Bharat or India, which is certainly not incorrect, yet in this context the term Bharati means a lover of knowledge who gets immersed in the knowledge.
It is not easy to summarize such a great lineage into a single page, yet this page would certainly act as an introduction for everyone and later on we can get into more specific details. The knowledge which is passed on in this tradition consists of 3 main parts
- Yoga sutras of Patanjali
- Tantra philosophy and practise
- Personal experiences of teachers of the tradition
Hence it can be seen that the tradition is an integration and amalgamation of different systems which acts to unify them and also has acted as a source of several further divisions of yogic knowledge over time.
The main concepts of Himalayan yoga tradition can be listed as follows:
- Purification of thoughts and emotions
- Breath awareness
- Kundalini breathing
- Sa-garbha pranayam
The Guru lineage or parampara of the Himalayan tradition is very rich and diverse and we will take a look at it in another article, but for now it would suffice to mention about a great and renowned Saint of this tradition, namely Swami Rama.
He was the founder of Himalayan Institute of Yoga Science and Philosphy and also the author of the popular spiritual book – Living With The Himalayan Masters. Infact a separate article would be devoted to describe his life and achievements and the current works which are being carried out by the Institute which he established and currently under the aegis of Swami Ved Bharti, a learned and spiritual soul who is the head of the organization currently.
We hope this serves as a good introduction to the Himalayan tradition of yoga and meditation and do keep a lookout in the times to come for more info on this and much more….