Hatha-Yoga, in a Western version… – Paris Côte d’Azur

AD eva ruchpaul
-Eva Ruchpaul-

At the same time, in North America, young Indians carried the good word and found an attentive public, even more sensitive to the spiritual message conveyed by Yoga than among Europeans. They opened schools that quickly spread throughout the United States and Canada. I am thinking in particular of Satchidananda and Visnudevananda who arrived opportunely in the middle of the “Peace and Love” episode of the New Age. These gurus marked their time and were not really replaced.

With hindsight, we see that the practice of hatha-yoga has focused on its presumed beneficial effects on physical and mental health. Some have even found applications in the field of competitive sports. The Marseille freediver Jacques Mayol (first to dive 100 meters deep without a tank) led the way while the national ski coach, Honoré Bonnet (Killy-Perillat period), had members of his team take yoga lessons. under the responsibility of Eva Ruchpaul. It was this lady, small in stature and tall in her aura, who convinced me to teach hatha-yoga in the 1970s. Met by chance in Gstaad, she invited me to Paris and shared her understanding and his approach to this technique from the other side of the world. Considered one of the first female yogis in Europe, she founded a training center in Paris for teachers who practice her “well-tempered” yoga in France and abroad…

tecate indra devi AD
– Indra Devi, Tecate, Mexico –

So, thanks to her and her recommendation, here I am giving hatha-yoga sessions at Club Med in Guadeloupe, La Martinique and Acapulco. This is where I came across – again by chance – a little book by Indra Devi. I support his desire to democratize yoga, to make it accessible to everyone, especially the elderly, and not simply to make it a westernized form of body gymnastics. I write to her and she arranges to meet me at her ashram in Tecate, Mexico, on the California border. I took a training course there and graduated from his Sai Baba Academy. But his belief in the miracles of his Indian master supposed to materialize various objects and his presumed gift of ubiquity disturbs my Cartesian mind…

I find myself a few months later in the USA where I will teach here and there to small groups. In Quebec, I respond to a request from Suzanne Piuze who is looking for teachers for her school in Montreal and is about to open a health-yoga center in Eastman, in the Eastern Townships. He’s a nice personality. First a journalist, she is at the forefront of feminist issues. She will also be one of the first women to have the right to divorce in Quebec in… 1968. She is courageous, she is curious, she has ideas and is open to vertebrotherapy, acupuncture, natural medicine … But I don’t agree with everything. I will resume my autonomy a few months later and will still give yoga classes as part of the Françoise Graham dance school in Montreal. My return to France, for personal reasons, will mark an end to this part of my life. A rich record of exciting experiences, tinged with a single regret. That of not having been able to convince the sports authorities of Quebec, in the run-up to the 1976 Olympic Games, to use yoga as an additional preparation tool for the selected athletes, despite the discreet support of the Secretary-General of the IOC at the time, Monique Berlioux.


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– Suzanne Piuze, Eastman, Quebec –

  • AtAnother episode related to these adventures, my meeting with Jiddu Krisnamurti. First through the reading of his books, his conferences and during a memorable face to face in his school in Broockwood Park in England. But this is another story…

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Hatha-Yoga, in a Western version… – Paris Côte d’Azur

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