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After studying yoga in India and traveling all over the world with traditional Vedantic masters, Steve Ross returned to his hometown of Los Angeles with a broadened point of view of what yoga could be. He was surprised to find that yoga classes at home were missing the humor, joy, and celebration that fueled his Eastern studies. Instead of expanding and enhancing the joy of being, Western yoga classes focused obsessively on correcting body positions and developing a picture-perfect physique. Determined to keep his yoga practice true to cultivating bliss and inner radiance, Ross started his own yoga studio and has created a yoga movement in Los Angeles that is, to put it simply, revolutionary.
Ross lives and teaches according to his belief that the secret to yoga is not obsessing over whether your feet are parallel or whether you can bend as far as the person on your left can, but about transcending the serious and allowing joy into your life, your body, your mind, and hopefully your yoga practice itself. It's about lightening up.
In Happy Yoga, Ross reveals that everyone is inherently happy, but that our true self is shadowed and concealed by the layers of worry that, through habit, become our daily thoughts. In each chapter, he examines one of our seven greatest human fears -- depression, ill health, loss of love, career failure, war, death, and emotional stasis -- and uses yoga wisdom to explain how to strip away these worries to reach your core of calm radiant joy. By sharing his system of yoga postures, diet, meditation, music, supplements, and philosophy, Ross has effected profound physical and mental changes in both his life and the lives of his students.
Ross's power is that he goes back to the source -- five thousand years of ancient yogic wisdom -- and decodes the abstract Eastern ideas for a Western audience. Happy Yoga is not just a set of movements and facts to consume, it is a way of shifting your awareness to bring the spirit of yoga into each movement, each meal, each relationship, each thought, and each breath.
With love and joyful abandon, Ross offers us a new way to practice and live yoga. The result is profound calm, a dramatic release of anxiety and pain, and the realization that there really is nothing to worry about.
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Steve Ross has been a yoga instructor for twenty years. Called Yogi to the Stars by InStyle, Ross has appeared in numerous publications including Vanity Fair and the New York Times. He is the host of Inhale, an early morning yoga program on the Oxygen network, and is a yoga teacher and retreat leader at Maha Yoga in his hometown of Los Angeles.From Publishers Weekly:
Much more than a guide to the physical practice of yoga, this book-like yoga itself-is about life, and about how to exist happily with oneself and the external world. It's based on the premise that if one gets rid of wanting and worldly desire, one can achieve "uninterrupted happiness and a constant experience of joyful wonder." Ross, a yogi to the stars, believes that fulfillment can and should come from within, and he offers generally sound advice for how to move towards a state of happiness, discover true love and be always blissful. All this could easily come across as hokey, but many of Ross's points are surprisingly resonant and logical (if not always simple to follow). In the quest for love, for example, he reminds readers, "If you've ever been around someone who wants your approval badly and wants your love badly, you may have noticed that the more the person pursues you-or stalks you, as the case may be-the more turned off you become." Quotes from yogis, comedians and ancient proverbs reinforce many of his arguments, and each chapter includes photographs and explanations of yoga poses to support the chapter's lessons. Excessive use of exclamation points, an underlying L.A.-inspired assumption that most of the world thinks being rich and famous will bring inner peace and some over-the-top health and medical advice are distracting, but getting past these flaws will allow readers to access many nuggets of wisdom and sage guidance.
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