The expertise and work of Animalia Asana’s patrons constitute the core of Animalia Asana’s being and provide a marvellous foundation and authority to Animalia Asana’s remit. Animalia Asana endeavours to explore the animal element in many of the different interpretations of yoga that are now extant in the world (for better or for worse!). This includes both historical and more modern approaches to understanding yoga; theistic, spiritual and secular approaches to understanding yoga; and faith-based, academic and scientific approaches to understanding yoga. This diversity is reflected in our patronage. In addition to the patronage below, the work of Animalia Asana is deeply aligned with, and influenced and guided by, the work of author and assistant professor Brianne Donaldson and professor Christopher Key Chapple.

 

Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies Dr Kenneth Valpey (aka Krishna Kshetra Swami):
“The term ‘yoga’ originally means ‘connection’. Connecting to our inner selves includes connecting to the variety of sentient beings around us, not least the non-human animals. Animalia Asana is bringing this essential element of yoga practice to the fore, and I’m sure it will have important benefits for all who participate in it.”

 

bannerHistorian, environmentalist and writer based in Chennai, India, Dr Nanditha Krishna:
All life forms are subject to the cycle of birth, death and rebirth. The liberation of the soul depends on one’s karmas or actions, and one goes through several births till the soul realizes the truth. Thus a person, an animal and an insect are equally part of the cycle of life, death and rebirth. Finally, when good karmas lead to self-realization, the soul is liberated from the cycle of samsara leading to  moksha or nirvana, the ultimate liberation of the individual soul. Animals are sacred because people identify with them, an identity born of the belief in karma and the transmigration of souls.”

 

 

 

 

Yoga teacher and PhD candidate in the area of Animals and Religion, Comparative Ethics and Hindu Studies at the University of California, Jonathan Dickstein
“Suffering and the cessation of suffering have been enduring concerns for pan-Indic religious traditions, yoga traditions included. Any entities capable of suffering, human or nonhuman, fall within the circle of care envisioned by these traditions. As such, it is our responsibility, as agents of dharma, to do our best to identify, alleviate, and prevent as much suffering as possible to sentient beings, especially the trillions of animals currently suffering atrocities at the hands of human beings.”

 

 

 

Long-standing yoga and movement teacher/mentor and imminent author Leo Peppas:
“Embracing all that has come before us can help us to appreciate who we are as a species, to deal with the human condition and to respect the profound teaching that process has to offer. This can help us to become ecological human beings that are more at one with nature and to find the wisdom this humility provides. Understanding who we are can develop from an awareness not only of what makes us unique, but also of the commonality we share with animals. Much of what we have to learn simply comes from honoring what already is. Appreciating the nature of life can support our creativity and thus our intelligence can shine and differentiate.”