‘Why go to Pune?’
Guest post by Lynn Holt.
Part One of our Pune blog series.
If you are a serious yogi the better question is why would you not go to Pune.
Once you are here then you will ask yourself why didn’t I come sooner?
When you arrive in India and if you are coming for the first time you are greeted with a blaze of intense colour, a vibrancy of smell, an incredible noise and so many people doing what they need to do for the day. It is an electric entrance into a fascinating and endearing country which is full of surprises and joy. Your time in India will be with you forever. There is no other place in the world that will match the intensity that you experience here.
No matter where you are on your yogic journey your visit to RIMYI is such a valuable gift to yourself in terms of your yoga experience. The teaching at RIMYI is the best in the world. The diversity of props available at RIMYI are also the best in the world. These props have been developed over the lifetime of BKS Iyengar and they will keep evolving as learning evolves. Discovering how and when to use all the different props is in itself a journey of discovery which will add to your self-development. Your time in Pune is really the best investment you can make to your practice.
In Pune, you will learn more about yourself and your reactions to different situations be those in the yoga hall or not, because you have the time to reflect, be quiet, to study, to practice, and to meet new people who also share your love of the subject of yoga.
It is a serious and yet simple decision to invest in yourself and come to Pune. Of course, by coming to India you forgo other activities as there is the financial aspect to consider, family responsibilities to arrange, time away from home and your workplace.
Although RIMYI has gone through some significant changes with the death of BKS Iyengar and his daughter Geetaji recently, there remains a wonderful, vibrant energy here that will captivate your heart and inspire you to learn and progress on your yogic path. Every teacher at RIMYI has an abundance of experience to offer in their classes. All the teachers also are on the mat with the students in many of the classes and in practice time. We are all students when we are on the mat and this aspect alone is great to be part of and experience.
The RIMYI library is also one of its great assets and has a treasure trove of serious yoga literature. The shelves of full of reading material that would take a lifetime to devour.
Most students do come for a month to study at RIMYI. While this may seem as if it is a long- and lengthy-time and luxury, that time is consumed relatively quickly. There will be six two-hour yoga classes to attend per week and fifteen hours of personal practice over six days. There are also over fifty-five classes that are available to observe per week if you have the energy. These classes are very diverse too as there are special classes for seniors, for women, in Marathi, for children, therapy classes, beginners transitioning from therapy classes, and all the different levels from beginners to advanced levels of yoga and of course pranayama classes from beginners to advanced.
Indian food is so very diverse and as Pune is a modern vibrant city there are so many different eating styles to experience here. It is a gastronomic delight in that sense. If you prefer the great outdoors Pune and its surrounds attract many trekkers to explore the many temples and hill stations. For many months of the year, there are festivals and celebrations to take part in too.
I hope I have convinced you to come to Pune either very soon or in the near future.
Lynn has been practising yoga from the age of eleven years and Iyengar Yoga since 1986. She has a medical and research background in addition to teaching yoga both in Australia and internationally for over twenty years.
For the past eight years, Lynn has been living in Pune, India studying yoga directly from the Iyengar family at Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (RIMYI). She also assists in the medical classes there.
As a regular contributor to Yoga Rahasya Lynn has an interest in the marriage of yogic philosophy and practice with medical science.
Pictures are from Simon’s trip to Pune in 2019 with fellow senior teacher Darrin from Kensington Yoga.