The Ancient Teachings in a Modern Context
In sanksrit, the word Jivanmukta means liberation in this lifetime.
The five tenets or founding principles of Jivamukti Yoga are:
- Bhakti - Devotion to something greater than ourselves
- Ahimsa - Non-violence in our thoughts, words and actions
- Nada - Deep Listening to develop a sound mind and body
- Dhyana - Meditation to free ourselves from delusion
- Shastra - Study of ancient yogic texts, philosphy and scripture to learn how humans over the ages have been able to transcend our habituation and become truly free
Jivamukti Yoga typical class formats include:
- Open (dynamic vinyasa - suitable for all levels),
- Basic (yoga fundamentals - suitable for all levels),
- Spiritual Warrior (60-minute fast-paced vinyasa class),
- Beginner Vinyasa, and
Jivamukti yoga classes also feature music and hands-on assists.
The founders of the Jivamukti Yoga method are Sharon Gannon and David Life (from New York), who created Jivamukti Yoga in 1984. Sharon and David's teachers were Sri Brahmananda Sarasvati, Swami Nirmalananda, and K. Pattabhi Jois (founder of the Ashtanga method of yoga - a big influence in the principles for teaching postural yoga in Jivamukti classes).
The Jivamukti community (satsang) of teachers and students are encouraged to "think critically, speak sweetly and act compassionately', in the words of Jules Febre (leading advanced Jivamukti teacher).