Namaste in the USA

Cover ImageAs I poured my coffee this morning I was wondering what literary blurb of interest I could quickly post before heading out to work. Coffee in hand, I sat before my loyal laptop and hit the stamp icon to see what detritus had been deposited under cover of night.

Amidst the exhausting coupons was an email detailing info about a rather exotic trip to India from a local Yoga studio. I linked over and absorbed the fantastic pictures with a bit of unease as I thought about the privilege that shoulders such a jaunt (no, I won’t be going). Though I’m no yogi, I do like the occasional stretch and existential trip it provides. Yet reading is more my bag, so while I might be a rookie in the pose-holding department, I’ve read enough yoga theory to at least hold my own in the esoteric conversation.

At it’s very base yoga is a state of mind, right? Can’t we shake the yoke and shed our skins right here at home instead of tromping off to Timbuktu-whoknowswhere? This was my increasingly caffeinated thought process as I saw a far less provoking email from NPR’s Book Notes. I happily clicked it open and guess what? The feature piece was titled ’The Great Oom’: Yoga’s Wild Ride to Respectability.

Author and journalist Robert Love is featured on NPR’s All Things Considered for his latest book titled, The Great Oom: The Improbable Birth of Yoga in America. Years of research in the making, The Great Oom chronicles the life of Pierre Bernard (nee Perry Baker) and the unlikely journey of yoga originating right here in our own backyard. That’s right people, N-e-b-r-a-s-k-a. I highly suggest giving this a listen whether you are into the craze or not because it’s nothing short of fascinating. Namaste.

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*Support your local bookstores, libraries, and universities. It matters.

-Post by Megan Shaffer

Related Links

-Check out what I believe to be Love’s site: Omnipotent Oom

-NYT Book of the Times piece: Iowa Swami Who Beguiled the Jazz Age

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