The Teacher Mentor

BKS Iyengar makes the following observations on the art of teaching:

‘The art of teaching is a mixture of technique and human emotional qualities. If the technique is from the intellect of the head, the feel of the technique is to be from the intelligence of the heart. The techniques of yogic explanation should be on an expressive experiential level so that they become really subjective. The other arts have objective techniques, but yoga has only subjective techniques. Objective techniques are views external, where as the subjective techniques are the dialogues from body to mind, mind to body then from mind to mind and then heart to heart. Man cannot be trained like birds or dogs, he can only be educated. Yoga is an educative art and science as it helps in culturing the body, the mind as well the self. All expressions of yoga are in this triangular field of body, mind and self in place and space, and space in place. The teacher has to talk to his or her own heart before using his or her head. The teacher has to observe each movement of the students and then express the words so that the students’ minds catch and put into action the expressions of the teacher.

Know that the brain exists in the head of man, but the mind exists everywhere in him. For example, if a needle pricks the foot, you react at once. The brain is far away but you reach instantly as the hidden mind at once surfaces there’.

BKS Iyengar in the article Teaching the Art of Teaching by Stephanie Quirk, Yoga Rahasya, Vol 7, No 4

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