His intention was "to test by personal experience the techniques of Hatha Yoga. Along the way he visited many Indian cities and learned yoga first hand from several teachers. He took notes and used those notes as the basis for a dissertation to obtain a PhD from Columbia University in This book is based on that dissertation originally published by Columbia University Press in At the time Bernard went to India in little was known in the West about the actual practice of hatha yoga. It was considered a mysterious and secret discipline, characterized by extreme physical practices leading to occult and supernatural powers.

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Aura and Theos, still a baby, went to live in her home town of Tombstone, Arizona. His father also persuaded him to go back to Arizona to study philosophy, and from February he spent another two years there reading philosophy and psychology. Theos never felt able to admit who his yoga guru was, and in his books such as his Heaven Lies Within Us, he invented a guru "In Arizona His biographer Douglas Veenhof notes that while as was customary in Tantra , he claimed to have been sworn to secrecy, he wrote "at great length" about his tantric practices, refusing only to speak about "the first thing that teachers of Buddhism or Yoga philosophy tell their students: the lineage of their teachers.

They married on 3 August He gained his Master of Arts degree at Columbia in In Calcutta he arranged a meeting with Lama Tharchin of Kalimpong , and studied the Tibetan language.

After nearly a year, he obtained permission in Sikkim from the British political officer to visit Tibet. He met several high officials of the government of Tibet, studied Tantric Yoga and collected many books on Tibetan Buddhism. His Tibetan collection included 22 bronze statues of Buddhist gods, 40 thangka paintings, 23 rugs, 25 mandalas , over cloth wood-block prints, 79 books, and many textiles, robes, hats, ritual implements, and household objects.

The collection is stored at the University of California, Berkeley. He had learnt these around , while studying at the University of Arizona. It was one of the earliest references in the West, possibly the first in English, [b] on the asanas and other practices of hatha yoga, as described in texts such as Hatha Yoga Pradipika. This proved impossible during the war. In they divorced and Walska renamed it to Lotusland. In October, while in the hills of Punjab in what is now Pakistan, inter-communal violence associated with the Partition of India broke out.

He and his Tibetan companion were shot, and their bodies thrown in a river.


Hatha Yoga

Asanas are seen to be just one component of hatha yoga. He then worked in detail on sirsasana headstand and its variations. He then learnt ujjayi breathing meaning "victorious" , sitkari hissing sound and sitali cooling breath , followed by the cleansing bhastrika and the soothing bhramari buzzing like a bee [b]. The goal of pranayama, he states, is kevala, the suspension of breath; he became able to hold his breath for four minutes at a time, but found doing this repeatedly "almost impossible". He was taught to accompany this with khechari mudra , the folding back of the tongue, enabling his kevala to extend to five minutes. However, he goes on a three-month retreat to study with "a well-trained Yogi at his hermitage", [16] based on "the theory of an inner light".


Theos Casimir Bernard




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