Mount Abrupt- The Grampians

The mystery of yoga and the spirit of cooking

The mystery of yoga and the spirit of cooking

By Jane Gibb

We began our most recent five-day retreat just as we heard the news that Mr Iyengar had passed away.

As we gathered to commence, it occurred to me that people from all over the world were doing the same thing: practicing yoga and reflecting on the life and legacy of Mr Iyengar.

Iyengar yoga keeps me going on so many levels. All the extremes of my emotions and cravings are levelled out and my body is free of aches and pains. I have the energy and spirit to work long days. And, despite my age, I can still garden all day and do strong physical work. 

Without my yoga practice, the cooking and preparing for all the guests on our retreats could stress me out. It’s so easy to become worried that as I may not get the meal finished on time or that I will not achieve all the flavours I am striving for. But the calmness that Iyengar yoga creates overrules these tendencies to worry, and allows me to quietly focus on what I am cooking, take in the fragrances of the food, feel the texture of the ingredients, enjoy the mysterious alchemy as the meal comes together.

I get in touch again with the calm and quiet focus that such a big part of why I love to cook and prepare meals.  It is this that puts the “spirit” in the food I create, and my yoga practice is the sources of this spirit. 

The passing of Mr Iyengar has deepened my certainty that my journey – to create a quiet, reflective space to practice yoga and enjoy food and discover all that we have in common with other people – is the right one.



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Dunkeld VIC 3294, Australia
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