there were prayer sessions, pujas, ceremonies for Guruji all around the world, including mysore, yesterday honoring sri k. pattabhi jois who passed away on may 18. many beautiful thoughts and remembrances have been written about him since that day by the hundreds of students whose lives have forever changed because of him.
Guruji’s teachings not only built our global ashtanga community with many wonderful teachers and students, but his influence also extended to several leading teachers of other vinyasa traditions today; shiva rea, sharon gannon, david life, and seane corn have all considered him their teacher at some point on their yogic journey and have expressed their gratitude for his teachings.
his legacy is one of the most influential in our current “yoga world.” I can’t imagine him not finding those banana leaves at the mysore library with the sequences on them, as legend says, can you?
I have had a chance to meet him twice. he led practices in helsinki, finland a couple of years ago in a big volleyball stadium without a mike. his booming voice chanting the opening mantra was the strongest of all 200+ of us in that space. then a year and a half ago in mysore I saw him again. this time illness clearly had taken its toll on his body, but still the smile and twinkling eyes were there as he sat in his chair at the shala watching us practice.
I was sad when I first heard the news of his passing, but now I feel only gratitude to this wonderful man named pattabhi jois, and for the gift of ashtanga yoga he broght to our western world.
thank you, Guruji, you will be in our hearts forever!