Yoga Sutra Wall-hanging.

This project was a year and a half in the making. These are all of Patangali’s Yoga Sutras in Sanskrit. This project was initiated by Anjali of the Baltimore Yoga Village, as a decorative wall-hanging that would also be a reminder of essence of the practice of Hatha Yoga (the physical aspect of eight-limbed yoga) and its long and noble lineage. You can see two of them displayed at both Yoga Village locations, and there is a third one is for sale, please contact us if you are interested.

The term yoga refers to a “yoke,” or that which binds two into one. The word yoga has no independent relation to the physical excercise of stretching, although it has become an easy way to refer to the physical practice. To put it another way, yoga has not taken place without the union which makes the multitude into one. This does not need to be an act of

will, just a plain awareness how it already is.

The word sutra is related to our word suture or the stitch of a thread. The Yoga Sutras are a series of aphorisms or one to two-liners  of simple wisdom for living, similar to a Haiku. They are often presented to the english reader translated with a commentary by person of wisdom who has directly perceived the wisdom the sutras convey.

When reading Satchidananda’s translation and commentary, I was struck by how few of the Yoga Sutras have to do with the physical practice. There are only several in which stead-fastness of posture is discussed. This limb of Patangali’s eight-limb yoga, has since been expanded into all of our favorite yoga postures. The whole of Hatha Yoga is in preparing the body to sit in one place with the spine erect for long periods of time. Hatha Yoga was designed as way for people to remain connected with the Royal Yoga lineage through the Kali Yuga (dark ages), a time when Hindus believe we are furthest from the Grand Center of the Universe.

The side-effects are feeling connected to and comfortable in your body, strength, flexibility, stability, stress reduction, and regularizing body rhythms like sleep and digestion.

I would like express my highest gratitude to Anjali and the Baltimore Yoga Village in conceiving this project and having the patience to bear with me while I did something I have never done before. I would also like to thank her for the work she has done in bringing many pure strains of Hatha Yoga to the Baltimore area and keeping the spiritual lineage in the fore-front all the while. Keep up the good work.

For Screen-Printers: This was a bear of project, mostly because my shop is not geared toward large-format printing. This print is roughly 3×8′. I used water-based ink on linen canvas. I used locally harvested bamboo for the posts, and my girl-friend helped me with the sewing (ie she sewed them).

First I had to tile together the transparencies for screen-making. The whole print required 8 23×31″ screens. I had to find a suitable way to register these screens to each other, so I put little “x” marks that over-lapped on each screen, put masking tape underneath the “x’s” so as not to print them on the canvas. This method made for slight off-regristration but nothing noticeable in the final product. I printed only three of these, the way I did that was to line each one up with the screen and stack the next one on top. Yardage screen-printers might cringe at this process, but it got the job done…eventually. I don’t think would take on a project quite like this until my shop grows a little more, but it was a great experience to trouble-shoot my way through this.  -Happy Printing -Mike

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