December 13, 2009

Book review: Yoga for a World Out of Balance: Teachings on Ethics and Social Action (Michael Stone)

Yoga for a World Out of Balance is Michael Stone’s well written follow up to his excellent book, The Inner Tradition of Yoga. In this book, Stone analyzes the five yamas of yoga and discusses how they can (and should) be incorporated into daily life.

Yoga for a World Out of Balance can either be read cover to cover or, since the yamas are not meant to be thought of as linear, step by step principles on a checklist, it can be read in a method suited to the individual reader.  Stone makes yoga spiritual without being religious and without getting “hippy-dippy New-Age” about it.  It’s clear that he cares very deeply about all aspects of yoga; it comes through in his writing.

Rather than a “if this happens, do this because it fits with this yama” handbook, Yoga for a World Out of Balance provides guiding principles with a holistic vision that sees beyond simple black and white into the more complex issues of today.  Stone is able to effectively demonstrate that the principles of yoga are just as relevant today as they were 2,000+ years ago, if not even more so.

Yoga for a World Out of Balance is highly recommended for those looking to truly take yoga off the mat and into their entire life, just as Patañjali intended all along.  Printed on 100% post-consumer recycled paper by Shambhala Publications and available from you local, independent bookstore.  (Shop independent, shop local, and tell ’em you saw it on Elephant Journal!)

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