Yoga Book Review: Yoga Body, Buddha Mind

Teresa Mason
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As yogis, we love taking our practice off the mat and into our lives, whether it’s through the music we listen to, our thoughts and actions, books we read, and beyond. Reading yoga-related books is a great way to augment and enrich our practice, our understanding of the practice, and our lives overall. That’s why we’ve reviewed a yoga book that we feel offers a lot of inspiration and imagination for your practice off the mat.
 
yoga-body-buddha-mindYoga Body, Buddha Mind, written by the beloved yoga teacher and influencer Cyndi Lee, is part manual and part long love letter to the dynamic aspects of yoga. It starts chronologically with how the author’s yoga journey started. Like many of us, she began yoga as part of a fitness regimen. This quickly changed when she realized how unfit her mind seemed compared to her body.
 
“After all the detailed instructions about how to work with my body, I felt abandoned by the lack of information relating to my mind.” This naturally led Lee to Buddhism as well as the concept and practice of mindfulness.
 
Some particularly powerful moments in this book were when Lee makes literal connections between the physical body and the mind. She briefly mentions a student she was teaching to at a heart opening workshop in Greenwich Village. He is tattooed and tough looking, but asks very directly if he has trouble in these heart opening poses because his heart is so closed off to other people.
 
The connections that she makes with her students, and her profound impact in helping them open into their own spirit, embodies the purest aspiration for yoga students and teachers: to open up to love and to feel wholeness or oneness within yourself.
 
Yoga Body, Buddha Mind is also equipped with images to help guide you in your physical practice, which is divided between beginner, intermediate, and advanced poses. There are sequences that aid every chapter. It starts with a basic sun salutation vinyasa, breathing sequences, lying, sitting, and standing sequences. At the end, there are full class programs illustrated in Cyndi’s own hand.
 
This comprehensive manual is not a difficult read. The grammar and vocabulary, Sanskrit terms aside, are very informal and conversational. The concepts behind those simple words, however, are what took me so long to finish the book. If you are a speed reader and zoom through it, you will miss the beauty that is held between these pages, which forces you to slow down and absorb everything fully before moving on to the next page. Reading this book is, in itself, a mindful act, which is exactly what this book is about.
 
Who this book is good for: Yogis looking to deepen their mind-body connection in their own yoga practice, yoga teachers looking for inspiration in their own teaching and personal practice, and for anyone looking to take the next step in their yoga or mindfulness journey.
 
You can shop the book here.
 
Dive in, and prepare to be moved, inspired, and empowered in your own journey. Have you read the book? We’d love to hear your thoughts! Have another yoga-related book you’d recommend? Please share in the comments below and keep the conversation going!
 

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Teresa Mason

Teresa is a Yoga Alliance certified yoga instructor and a Karma Kids certified kids yoga instructor. Her top passions are yoga, books, cats, and nutrition. She hopes to show that yoga is for everyone and to inspire others to find balance and self-love on their yoga and mindfulness journey.

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