The Art of Vinyasa
The Art of Vinyasa is an essential guide to practicing yoga as a meditation in motion. Richard Freeman and Mary Taylor present a radical approach to the form of Ashtanga yoga—one that is based on the subtle internal forms of the practice. When practiced in this way, Ashtanga yoga—and particularly the vinyasa, or the conversation of complementary opposites—allows practitioners to experience a deep and focused awakening.
Where Ashtanaga yoga is usually practiced in a set sequence of postures, in this book those same movements and poses are broken down by their form: Standing Poses, Forward Bends, Backbends, Twists, Balancing Poses, and Finishing Poses. Alignment, anatomy, and imagination—these are the beads that string together the asana, which in turn reveals the direct experience of the nature of both the body and the mind. With warmth, humor, and wisdom, Freeman and Taylor provide the groundwork for establishing an internally rooted yoga practice that goes far beyond the mat and into the core of one’s life.
"There is no other manual to the subtle body so intimately connected to the practical application of yoga as The Art of Vinyasa. With equal parts of compassion and grace, Richard Freeman and Mary Taylor ground the esoteric notions of the yoga tradition’s most sacred teachings—and impart that wisdom to the reader. More than just a book, this is a body of work that proves that yoga is a spiritual path, and that the body is not reducible to mere bones and muscles. I strongly recommend this book to all sincere students of yoga." —Kino MacGregor, author of The Power of Ashtanga Yoga
"The Art of Vinyasa is nothing short of miraculous. After working through the grosser levels of yoga, it is often confusing whether our perception, intuition, concepts, and practice are leading us in a direction of liberation and peace. Mary Taylor and Richard Freeman’s insights and explanations, which teach us from the inside out, are invaluable guides to us yogis. Without the advantage of living with an enlightened master (I can’t find one), this book is the next best teacher—and I for one am deeply indebted." —Rodney Yee, author of Moving toward Balance
"Mary Taylor and Richard Freeman are a dynamic duo merging their collective energies to create this powerful book. The pages are filled with their esoteric, practical, philosophical, visual, and compassionate insights presenting yoga in its myriad layers of physical endeavor, intellectual pursuit, theoretical expression, and ultimately a spiritual path." —David Swenson, author of Ashtanga Yoga: The Practice Manual
"The Art of Vinyasa is an extraordinary book, illuminating the rare and precious path into the inner (and most powerful) dimensions of yoga practice. Study and savor it, contemplate it—most importantly, unearth and practice the gems you find within its pages." —Rod Stryker, founder of ParaYoga and author of The Four Desires