About Yoga

Yoga is union of the physical and mental self, finding harmony in life. A practical application of integration. Like anything beneficial which stands the test of time Yoga has been around for at least 5 millennium (evidence is found from the Indus – Sarasvati civilisation 3,000 – 1,800 BCE). It has been said that Yoga is for all regardless of age, wealth or religion.

The word Yoga comes from the Sanskrit root yuj meaning to yoke or harness, to merge, join or unite a healthy body with a calm focused mind. Yoga helps to integrate body and breath, breath and mind, mind and heart. Yoga is for the mind. Some definitions include:

Yoga can also be defined as a marg, a path for SELF realization, (a chance to reconnect with ourselves) bringing our mind and actions under control through right knowledge (jnana), action (karma) and devotion (bhakti). Yoga is a practical experience enhancing serenity of mind, positive actions and service to others. Starting with yourself yoga helps to experience peace within and peace without.

A holistic yoga practice influences how we live, how we treat ourselves and others cultivating equanimity, kindness and compassion through thought, word and deed, through our mind speech and heart.

'What we need is a good heart, a disciplined mind and a healthy body' - The XIV Dalai Lama.

Ashtanga Yoga

An integrated practice of body, mind and spirit, linking yoga asanas (physical postures) and breathing techniques. Learn how to balance movement and stillness, develop a positive attitude and increase your understanding between the body and mind complex, overall becoming happier and healthier. Through regular practice and appropriate sequencing Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga develops one’s understanding and application of ujjayi breathing; bandhas (internal locks) and drishti (steady gaze). Working through alignment of asana (physical postures) and vinyasa (breath connected movements) awareness and focus develop. When we settle into a steady practice a certain bhav (feeling, mood or intention) is brought into each breath, pose and practice.

Over time, practice develops an integration of the 8 limbs, the eight fold path of Patanjali’s classical Ashtanga Yoga. Progression is gradual tasya bhumisu viniyogah (Yoga Sutra 3.6) according to each student’s abilities, needs, age and circumstance.

The Meaning of Mangalam

Mangalam is a Sanskrit term meaning auspicious; ashtau meaning eight; anga meaning limbs. Therefore the term Ashtanga Yoga Mangalam can be translated as an eight limbed auspicious practice, one which respects each individual’s current circumstance and ability. When yoga is practised regularly and approached correctly so that it is suitable, safe and effective it becomes beneficial and tranquillity can be experienced.

Sarvamangalam Bhavatu Bhavatu Bhavatu

May that tranquillity be everywhere and in everyone.

From Mangalam Tala mantra an original composition by Ravi Shankar (and Dr Nandakumara)


Fiona Dear Maxine, thank you for your encouragement, for your understanding and for your time and knowledgeable explanations. You continue to give me during practice. I cherish this, thank you.

Karen To Maxine, sincere thanks for all that you teach and share with me. May the years ahead be kind for you and those that you teach.

Jasley Dear Maxine, I love the personal approach as we can all practise at our own pace to maximise both the benefit and the enjoyment. Your individual attention has allowed me to reach my potential, resulting in greater strength, balance and general inner health.


Yeronga State High School
159 Villa Street Yeronga
Brisbane, Australia
Norm Lee Cultural Centre
(on the corner of Villa and Oakwood Streets)