Padmashree Dr. Vijay Bhatkar to Adhiyoga (present book), Chancellor, India International Multiversity, Pune; Chairman, Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi; www.vijaybhatkar.org
20 January 2014
Last year, Neel Kulkarni had published the Authentic Yoga Sutras for Today that he composed using his prolonged experience of Yoga practice as well as teaching. Authentic Yoga Sutras for Today contained only a short explanation of each Sutra. Today, he has shown a great commitment by completing his exhaustive commentary on these Sutras in the book, Adhiyoga – Exposition of the Authentic Yoga System of Neel Kulkarni. This book gives precise explanation of what he is indicating in each Sutra, thus leaving no doubt in the reader's mind.
Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, the epitome of Indian Yoga scriptures, show a path to self-realization and spiritual liberation. This expects a student to possess a desire to withdraw from the material or non-spiritual world due to the sorrowful experience of the present or past life. However, in the common world and especially today's materialistic world, everybody strives to obtain happiness and only some of them develop spiritual urge. Neel's Adhiyoga Sutras address the situation of today's every individual, whether they are common people wishing to obtain happiness through physical and mental achievements, or whether they are keen spiritual seekers seeking self-realization and spiritual liberation. Neel's sutras start with search for happiness (Chapter 1)!
Neel takes each seeker from where they are to where they wish to go (Chapter 2), step by step using physical, mental and spiritual methods. He provides several options for variety of seekers (Chapters 11 -15), without binding them to one single faith or methodology. He provides gentler methods to slower seekers and stronger methods to intense seekers. He trains the seeker's body and mind whether they wish to obtain good health and fitness (Chapters 6-10), or obtain better academic grades, or obtain success in career, or obtain spiritual goals (Chapter 14). He improves all aspects of body and mind, but as applicable to one's goals.
Neel defines philosophical terms in very simple language (Chapters 4-6). He provides guidance for practice as well as teaching (Chapters 16-17) and also takes care of seeker's life in general (Chapter 18).
Neel has opened doors to a new understanding of Yoga-shastra , a major contribution of this kind only after the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. His Authentic Yoga System comprehends the ancient wisdom in Yoga-shastra, critically looks at certain practices previously and currently practiced that need either corrections or improvements. He has correctly and boldly challenged unscientific practices prevalent either due to lack of scientific knowledge or due to commercialism. At the same time, he has provided very logical, systematic, and simple approach for the practice and teaching of Yoga.
Neel's work is at the same time for scholars as well as common people. His point of view is scientific, logical, precise and integrative. He has amazingly combined physical, mental and spiritual aspects of Yoga to create a system that shall show a way to the coming generations for long time. His work is innovative, research oriented and complete. I would not hesitate to recommend him to be a Fellow of a reputed university for his contribution.
Foreword by Dr. Vijay Bhatkar to Authentic Yoga Sutras for Today (previous book):
Neel Kulkarni has made a definite contribution to the world of yoga that is commendable for many a reason. It is interesting that he has comprehended his long-term yoga practice and understanding in the form of condensed knowledge enunciations or aphorisms which are known as "Sutras" in the classical Sanskrit literature. He is fortunate to get a Sanskrit scholar of the highest order, namely Dr. Ganesh Thite, who has helped with the translation of Neel's original English sutras into the Sanskrit sutras.
Secondly, Neel Kulkarni has integrated a variety of topics related to the subject of yoga, practice of yoga and teaching yoga. For example, he has included even the financial need of a yogi.
Thirdly, but not at all lastly, he has integrated the ancient philosophy with the modern sciences and methodologies. He has given equal place to both the ancient and the modern for achieving individual practitioner's goals, while at the same time inspiring the practitioner towards the spiritual goal.
I believe this integrative work will definitely contribute to the field of yoga and it shall benefit the yoga students and teachers worldwide. I congratulate Neel on this accomplishment and wish him the best for future yoga work, including an exhaustive commentary on the present work.
May this work benefit those who are suffering from physical, mental and spiritual problem of any kind, and contribute to their overall wellbeing.
Dr. Vijay Bhatkar