We take to heart the teachings that have been handed to us and so express gratitude to our teachers and traditions.
At Prajna Yoga we have many different influences via a variety of lineages. Our teaching could only take place as a result of the many devoted masters and practitioners who proceeded us. Like a bead on a mala, our work is linked to a long history of meditative practices. Thus we are part of a living, breathing dynamic tradition. We celebrate the traditions that have inspired us and have provided us with the opportunity to express the magical alchemy of the meditative arts.
Tias began studying Iyengar Yoga in the early 1980s as a result of his mother’s influence who began practicing Iyengar Yoga in 1978 under the guidance of Silva Mehta (who wrote the Iyengar Way) in London, England. A comprehensive and intricate system of practice, Iyengar Yoga provides critical detail on internal alignment. Tias and Surya continue to reap the benefits of Iyengar’s work. They share and study regularly with many teachers who are in the Iyengar system or who have been influenced by work of BKS Iyengar and his family. At Prajna Yoga, we always recommend students to study and learn from the profound work of Iyengar.
Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga
Both Pattabhi Jois and Iyengar were students of T. Krishnamacharya in South India. Both Tias and Surya spent time in Mysore during the 1990s studying directly with Pattabhi Jois. However fate would have it that they did not cross paths until they met in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1997. Tias and Surya always found Pattabhi Jois’ energy to be phenomenal even in his early eighties. He was like a lion. He was so strong and nimble. Matched with his tremendous strength was is boundless joy. The dynamic flow of Ashtanga Yoga has an alchemical effect on the body, particularly the prana kosha. While Prajna Yoga does not practice and teach the entire Ashtanga Series, we integrate elements of the sequences into our work and certainly the hand-on adjusting that plays such an important role in the Ashtanga Vinyasa practice.
Much of our training in the Buddha-dharma stems from the teaching of Tsoknyi Rinpoche. A brilliant scholar and meditation master, he was born into a family of renowned Dzogchen masters in Tibet. He set up his North American home in Crestone, Colorado and Tias and Surya began to do week long meditation retreats with his sangha there in 2005. Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s teaching is brilliant and playful and provides remarkable insight into the nature of mind.
Tias’s Zen influence is from the Chinese traditions of Chan Buddhism, which later evolved into the Zen teachings from Japan. He has studied with a number of brilliant Zen teachers. Currently Tias is a student of Roshi Henry Shukman, at the Mountain Cloud Zen Center. Over the past twenty years he has also been a student of Roshi Joan Halifax and Roshi Joan Sutherland. Tias’s Zen training includes in-depth koan study—sayings and poems that help to clarify the non-dual view of Zen practice.