Guru Banda Singh Khalsa

I have a pretty eclectic past and a pattern of immersing myself deeply into whatever my current chosen path may be. In early 1998 I was living in New York, and started practicing Kundalini Yoga.  That summer I took the Master’s Touch course in New Mexico with Yogi Bhajan (1929-2004). It was a great experience and the lifestyle and practices were very appealing to me at the time, so I chose roll with it and take a spiritual (Sikh) name from Yogi Bhajan.

He replied to me by mail and said, “You have been blessed to live as Guru Banda Singh, which means ‘the lion who is the guru’s right hand man’. Meditate on that name and your path in life will become clear to you”. People often think is it bandha (like mulabandha), but it is actually taken from Banda Singh Bahadur who was a military commander in Guru Gobindh Singh’s Khalsa army. A warrior you might say ;)

That year in December, before dawn on the winter solstice I took Amrit ceremony. Amrit is like a Sikh baptism where one takes vows that provide a foundation of living a certain lifestyle to further develop and enhance your spiritual practice. The vows include not cutting your hair; refraining from meat, alcohol and other stimulants; remaining celibate until married and maintaining a monogamous relationship with your spouse; and committing to meditation and prayer each day. After taking Amrit one becomes Khalsa, which mean pure.

I kept it up for one more year, then in 2000 I shaved my beard and started practicing ashtanga yoga. That part of the story is not quite so simple, but I will save that for another day.

So the BS in GBSK is not for Barry Silver, as many people assume. GBSK is Guru Banda Singh Khalsa. Eddie and I used to joke that we were going to start a hardcore band called GBSK, instead it became the name of the t-shirt brand. Probably should have chosen a name that is easier to remember. But the truth is, I never thought it would go anywhere. Just wanted a platform to share my art and designs with some yoga students in Japan who asked me. Then it just grew from there. And if people can remember CBGB, UB40 and DMX….why not GBSK?

 Guru Banda Singh Khalsa


Gently Down

Early in 2005 my dear friend and creative partner at the time, Spiros Antonopoulos and I were trying to come up with our next project as well as a way to fund a trip to Mysore to attend the celebration for Pattabhi Jois’ 90th birthday. After some brainstorming and soul searching we decided to do “Gently Down”.

Inspired by a story we heard that Lee "Scratch" Perry used to bury his tapes in his back yard for some years to get extra tonal diversity and do rituals to empower them, we came up with this idea. We would screen print an image of the Goddess Ganga on a series of T-shirts and take them on a spiritual pilgrimage through India where they would be bathed in the Ganges at Haridwar, washed and beaten on the stones of the river’s bank at Uttarkashi and blessed in the temple at Gangotri in the Himalayan mountains.

The concept was that even if you could not make it to India, you could follow your shirts journey as we travel blogged it’s progress. We also wanted to take a mundane item like a t-shirt and see it go through a process of transformation, purification and blessing by the water element. It’s hard to imagine now that internet live blogging was in it’s infancy in 2005, but it was. And we failed to anticipate the obstacles we were about to encounter, like115 degree heat, monsoon rains, me losing the cable for the camera, lack of internet access north of RIshikesh and the fight we had hiking through the Himalayas that resulting in us not speaking to each other for 3 days…..And Spiros got hypothermia after bathing in the Ganges at Gaumukh, the geological source of the river that is located at a glacier.

I will spare the reader the many ups and downs we experienced on our mission and jump to the conclusion. The shirts and us made it up and back from Haridwar to the Himalayas and finally down to Mysore in time for the festivities. All 108 shirts were sold which allowed me to pay my credit card bills that we used to front the trip. We even got to stay and practice at the yoga school in Mysore for a couple of months. And most importantly, I think I can say with confidence that we had 108 very satisfied shirt recipients.

Bathed at Haridwar

Beaten at Uttarkashi

Blessed at Gangotri

Each shirt was packaged in a custom made canvas carry bag and came with a bottle of Ganga water collect at Gaumukh.

You can see more photo of the trip HERE




ヨーガとセラピー シュリ・K・パッタビ・ジョイス

この記事はAshtanga Yoga New YorkAYNY)ディレクターのエディ・スターン氏がAYNYホームページ上のBlogで掲載したものです。エディ・スターン氏の許可のもと翻訳・配布しています。(配布:バリー・シルバー / 翻訳:福永美奈子)

AYNYホームページ(Blog http://ayny.org/yoga-and-therapy.html
これは、1977年にグルジがバンガロールで行った講義の記録です。AYNYホームページのSri.K.Pattabhi Joisのページでも読むことができます。この論文は1977年にThe Budha Vacana Trust社より発行された「Yoga and Science (ヨーガと科学)」という書籍に掲載されました。インドでも希少価値が極めて高いこの書籍を探し出してくださったショーン氏とレスリー・カミノフ氏に心より感謝を申し上げます。
Yoga and Therapy
By Sri K Pattabhi Jois
 その精神の制御と浄化の過程をヨーガと呼びます。マハリシ・パタンジャリはこのことを格言のなかでヨーガ・チッタ・ヴィリッティ・ニローダハ - ヨーガとはあらゆる精神の波立ちを制御して一定の対象にとどめる過程である -と説いています。これはまた、八支則 - ヤマ(禁戒)、ニヤマ(勧戒)、アーサナ(坐法)、プラーナヤーマ(調息)、プラティヤーハーラ(制感)、ダーラナ(集中)、ディヤーナ(瞑想)、サマディ(三昧)-という体系をもつアシュタンガ・ヨーガと呼ばれています。
 Asanam pranasamrodhah pratyharashca dharana | dhyanam samadhiretani shadangani prakirtitah ||
 Hathasya prathamangatvat  asanam purvamuccate | Tasmat tadasanam kuryat arogyamcangalaghavam ||
Vina vinyasa yogena asanadinnakarayet ||
Tasmim sati shavasaprashvasayorgati vicchedah pranayamah ||
 Tritiya kālastho rivah svayam samharate prabham | Tritiyange sthitho dehi vikaram manasam tatha ||
私自身の長年の経験上、医師では治せない多くの(慢性的な)病気は坐法と調息の実践による治癒が可能と言えます。例えば、喘息、糖尿病、胃病、リウマチなどといった薬では治せないとされている病気は、医療に頼らずとも治療することができます。これらのよく知られている病気は新薬が開発されない限り治癒は難しいとされています。今のところそういった病気に効果のある薬はありません。しかし、繰り返しにはなりますが、これらすべての慢性的な病気はヨーガアーサナとプラーナヤーマの実践によって治癒可能なのです。その証拠に、私たちのインスティチュートでは多くの慢性疾病にかかった人々が正しいガイダンスのもとでの坐法と調気の実践によってその症状を緩和しています。また、麻痺や便秘、痔などといった病気は薬に頼らずとも、アヌパラ(液体)の実践によってわずかに和らげることができます。そのヨーガの知識の土台として本質的に必要とさ れるのが、信念と勇気、そして冒険心です。
Pranayamabhyasayuktasya sarvarogakshyobhavet | Avuktabhyasayuktasya sarvarogasamudbhava ||
Yoga and Science(ヨーガと科学)」 Buddha Vacana Trust1977発行、インド・バンガロール