Paula’s Beach Reads

If you get a taste of the practice of yoga, it takes over your life, in a very good way.  It changes your physical body, mental body, and spiritual body.  So, most of my life is learning about this practice.   Here are some of my favorite books, including some you may not think of as “yoga books”, but they are nevertheless.  These books remind us how to live, how to treat others, and how to overcome challenges in our lives…

How Yoga Works, by Michael Roach. 

This is my philosophy book for my 200 hour training.  The secrets of how yoga works to make us truly whole are revealed here in a delightful story based on how these precious teachings reached Tibet form their home in India, over a thousand years ago.  Contrary to philosophy books, this is not boring (although it takes a while to pull you in), and is wrapped around characters wanting a better life because of chronic back pain.

Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramhansa Yogananda

This book is probably best understood after you have learned a little about yoga in your 200 hr certification.  There is quite alot of sanskrit, but wonderful notes at the bottom to help you understand.  It’s real life, real yoga, and the possibilities of what is obtainable with this practice.  One of the Top 100 Spiritual Books of the Twentieth Century. New Bonus Materials added to this edition include: the last chapter that Yogananda wrote covering the years 1946-1951 that was not available in the original edition, the eulogy that Yogananda wrote for Gandhi, a new afterword by Swami Kriyananda, one of Yogananda’s closest disciples.This is a new edition, featuring previously unavailable material, of true spiritual classic, Autobiography of a Yogi one of the best-selling eastern philosophy titles of all-time, with millions of copies sold, named one of the best and most influential books of the 20th century.This highly prized verbatim reprinting of the original 1946 edition is the ONLY one available free from textual changes made after Yogananda’s death.This updated edition contains bonus materials, including a last chapter that Yogananda himself wrote in 1951, five years after the publication of the first edition. It is the only version of this chapter available without posthumous changes.Yogananda was the first yoga master of India whose mission it was to live and teach in the West. His first-hand account of his life experiences includes childhood revelations, stories of his visits to saints and masters in India, and long-secret teachings of Self-realization that he made available to the Western reader.

Left to Tell, by Immaculee Ilibagiza

A must read for all who seek forgiveness, and strive to live authentically from their heart.  This is why we practice yoga; to remove deep hidden fears.  Immaculee Ilibagiza grew up in a country she loved, surrounded by a family she cherished. But in 1994 her idyllic world was ripped apart as Rwanda descended into a bloody genocide. Immaculee’s family was brutally murdered during a killing spree that lasted three months and claimed the lives of nearly a million Rwandans. Incredibly, Immaculee survived the slaughter. For 91 days, she and seven other women huddled silently together in the cramped bathroom of a local pastor while hundreds of machete-wielding killers hunted for them. It was during those endless hours of unspeakable terror that Immaculee discovered the power of prayer, eventually shedding her fear of death and forging a profound and lasting relationship with God. She emerged from her bathroom hideout having discovered the meaning of truly unconditional love—a love so strong she was able seek out and forgive her family’s killers. The triumphant story of this remarkable young woman’s journey through the darkness of genocide will inspire anyone whose life has been touched by fear, suffering, and loss.

I hope you enjoy these books.  I have read them over and over, for their lessons are many and mighty.

See you on the mat,



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