Three Essential Books on Yoga

by Adrian Molina

I’m thrilled to delve into three of my all-time favorite books on yoga. These texts have not only enriched my understanding of yoga but have also profoundly impacted my practice and outlook on life.

Let’s start with Overcoming Trauma Through Yoga by David Emerson. This book is more than just a guide; it’s a testament to the healing power of yoga, especially in the context of trauma. As a student of David Emerson, the author, I’ve witnessed firsthand the transformative effects of trauma-sensitive yoga. In this book, Emerson skillfully bridges the worlds of yoga and psychology, offering a comprehensive framework for using yoga as a tool for healing. Drawing on both ancient yogic wisdom and modern scientific research, Emerson demonstrates how trauma-informed yoga can help individuals navigate the complexities of trauma and reclaim their sense of wholeness. Through practical exercises, case studies, and personal anecdotes, he highlights the importance of creating a safe and supportive environment for trauma survivors to explore the mind-body connection. “Overcoming Trauma Through Yoga” serves as a powerful reminder of the profound impact that yoga can have on our mental, emotional, and physical well-being. Ideal for yoga students and teachers, and particularly for teachers, it will change your mind about your role as a teacher by understanding the nuances in the relationship with our students that sometimes we take for granted when we teach yoga as if it was a mere physical practice. There is so much richness in this book. It should be mandatory on each yoga training.

Moving on to Yoga: The Spirit and Practice of Moving into Stillness by Eric Schiffman. Unlike traditional yoga manuals, this book offers a refreshing perspective on the practice, emphasizing the importance of inner stillness and self-discovery. Schiffman draws on his own experiences as a practitioner and teacher to explore the deeper dimensions of yoga beyond the physical postures. Through poetic prose and insightful reflections, he invites readers to cultivate a sense of presence and mindfulness in their practice. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned yogi, “Yoga: The Spirit and Practice of Moving into Stillness” offers valuable insights into the transformative potential of yoga as a path to inner peace and self-realization. One of the things that I love the most about this book is that you read it, and it feels as Eric is next to you on your journey. You can read his story, a story of looking for meaning, his relationship to the practice of yoga unfolds through the pages and you can sense how he is someone who has been transformed by the practice. A natural teacher.

And finally, my number one favorite: “Autobiography of a Yogi” by Paramahansa Yogananda. This timeless classic is not just a book; it’s a spiritual journey that has captivated readers for generations. Through the eyes of Yogananda, we are transported to the mystical world of India and introduced to the ancient teachings of yoga and meditation. From his encounters with spiritual masters to his own quest for self-realization, Yogananda’s memoir is a testament to the power of faith, devotion, and inner transformation. More than just a biography, “Autobiography of a Yogi” is a profound exploration of the human spirit and its infinite potential. Whether you’re seeking spiritual guidance or simply curious about the mysteries of life, this book offers invaluable wisdom and inspiration that transcends time and space. This book has changed my life and continues to do it. It opens my eyes to a different type of meditation, kriya yoga. I traveled many times to his temple in Encinitas, California and I continue to learn from him. And to be inspired from his work. When you read his pages the same feeling of truth comes through as when you are reading books such as Man’s search of meaning. You know what you are reading is life in motion. Something that you can’t unread. It is supposed to change you. To make you better.

These three books offer unique perspectives on the practice of yoga and its transformative potential. Whether you’re interested in healing from trauma, exploring the deeper dimensions of the practice, or embarking on a spiritual journey, these texts are sure to inspire and enlighten. I encourage you to explore them further and discover the profound wisdom they hold. Happy reading, and may your journey into the world of yoga be filled with joy, insight, and self-discovery. Education continues to be in my path, a guiding light, learning from others before us, who have shaped the road. Life is supposed to be explored. Reading books is having a glimpse into someone’s journey and realizing that we all go through the same struggles.


Author

  • Adrian Molina

    Adrian Molina, a prominent figure in community organization and mental health advocacy, dedicates his life to fostering connections and effecting positive change, particularly among marginalized groups. With a background in social service, including work in homeless shelters and maximum security prisons, Adrian emphasizes the importance of mind-body practices in healthcare and law enforcement. As the founder of Warrior Flow, Adrian offers trauma-informed yoga education worldwide, targeting those in community outreach and the medical field. He's a passionate mental health advocate, volunteering with crisis hotlines, serving as an ambassador for NAMI, and training for various programs focused on suicide prevention and child abuse. Adrian is also working on a memoir exploring themes of mental health, resilience, and growth. Adrian's influence spans globally, inspiring hope and change in countless lives. Click link below to learn more about Adrian’s work.

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