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Gurus of Modern Yoga$
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Mark Singleton and Ellen Goldberg

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199938704

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199938704.001.0001

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Swami Kṛpālvānanda: The Man behind Kripalu Yoga

Swami Kṛpālvānanda: The Man behind Kripalu Yoga

Chapter:
(p.171) Chapter 8 Swami Kṛpālvānanda: The Man behind Kripalu Yoga
Source:
Gurus of Modern Yoga
Author(s):

Ellen Goldberg

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199938704.003.0009

This chapter examines the life and teachings of Swami Kṛpālvānanda (1913–1981) with specific reference to the notion of the circular construction of authority. Within the transnational practice of modern yoga, Kṛpālvānanda’s life serves as an authoritative voice and sets the standard by which all yoga experience is measured within his monastic and lay communities. Thus, the details of Kṛpālvānanda’s life including biography, autobiography, and hagiography are analyzed, and three key elements—prāṇotthana via śaktipāta initiation, prāṇa-yoga, and divine body (divya deha)—are highlighted as features not typically seen in other modern approaches.

Keywords:   Kripalu Yoga, haṭhayoga, śaktipāt, yoga, divine body, khecarī mudrā, āsana, kuṇḍalinī, tantra

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