The Teacher Appears: 108 Prompts to Power Your Yoga Practice is the third book of Brian Leaf’s that I am reviewing and at the onset, let me tell you that this is NOT a book you read from cover to cover. It is a workbook, life journal, and an on- and off-the-mat partner to one’s yoga practice all rolled into one.
What makes The Teacher Appears valuable? The prompts are not Brian’s alone but come from different yoga luminaries: Mayim Bialik, Beryl Bender Birch, Rachel Brathen, Elena Brower, J. Brown, Mallika Chopra, Seane Corn, Tiffany Cruikshank, Govind Das, Krishna Das, Lori Deschene, Alan Finger, Ana T. Forrest, Sharon Gannon, Joseph Goldstein, Schuyler Grant, Anna Guest-Jelley, Dan Harris, Bryan Kest, Jack Kornfield, Tias Little, Sarah Platt-Finger, Shiva Rea, Dave Romanelli, Gretchen Rubin, Mark Stephens, David Swenson, and Ganga White.
Inside the covers are 108 different prompts. Of course, yogis all know the significance of the number 108, a sacred number in Hinduism and yoga.
The book’s title is also apt. There is a saying, “When the student is ready, the teacher appears“. The 108 prompts help deepen one’s yoga practice. Some prompts make you meditate on a thought such as one’s connection to others, to the universe, and to the Divine. Others ask you to listen more deeply to your inner self, sit quietly, focus your gaze on an object (dristi), and even color a page (promise, it is therapeutic!). Some suggest an action for the day. A couple more reflect the humorous Brian Leaf I came to recognize from his earlier two books.
While the prompts, on the surface, appear very simple, they are actually profound in their simplicity. Each prompt, when done with ATTENTION and INTENTION, is a mini yoga practice in itself. After all, a yoga practice is not merely its physical form but involves the mind and spirit as well. Even non-yoga practitioners will find that this book is actually great food for thought — a chance to stop being busy and be still, becoming more aware of one’s surroundings.
There is no order to these prompts. Surprise yourself and just open to a page. Or choose one that fits your mood. In the end, the real teacher is not the one who leads you in asanas in class but the one who shows up inside of you.
Here’s a teaser video for the book.
The Teacher Appears: 108 Prompts to Power Your Yoga Practice is in paperback version at the moment but I have an advance copy from Brian in digital form. That actually suits me fine because I can print out the pages that need me to write on a page. I can also print out the page over and over again for different days and different moods.
The Teacher Appears: 108 Prompts to Power Your Yoga Practice is available on Amazon.
But Wait…I Have A Book Giveaway!!!
Brian has agreed to ship a copy of The Teacher Appears: 108 Prompts to Power Your Yoga Practice to one of my blog readers as his giveaway. YAY, thanks Brian!!!
Since Brian’s book is minimalistic, I will also make the mechanics for this giveaway as simple as possible using Rafflecopter. The giveaway begins at the stroke of midnight of February 3. (Note: Please join from WITHIN Rafflecopter only in order to earn entry points.)
About Brian Leaf
Brian Leaf, M.A., is the author of thirteen books, including Misadventures of a Garden State Yogi. Brian graduated from Georgetown University in 1993 with a BA in theology, English, and business, and in 1999 he completed a masterâ€™s degree at Lesley College, specializing in yoga and ayurveda. He lives in Northampton, Massachusetts, with his wife and two sons. Brian is a devotee of Swami Kripalvananda.