Vamana Rishi

Last updated: December 21, 2023

What Does Vamana Rishi Mean?

Vamana Rishi is the name of the sage, who is believed to be the elusive author of the ancient yogic text, the “Yoga Korunta.” This text was allegedly discovered by Krishnamacharya in the early 20th Century, and he used it to teach influential students, such as K. Pattabhi Jois and B. K. S. Iyengar, who went on to teach their own yoga systems. However the text itself was not preserved, and as such, its existence has been questioned by some. There are also no known records of the author Vamana Rishi.


Yogapedia Explains Vamana Rishi

Despite there being no clear records of the sage Vamana Rishi, the name Vamana is relatively common in India. It is the name of Vishnu’s fifth avatar. The word “Rishi” generally refers to a seer or a sage, and it comes from the root word drsh, meaning “to see”.

Legend has it that Vamana Rishi was a sage born at a time when Ashtanga Yoga had been nearly forgotten, and as such he incarnated himself deliberately for the task of bringing it back to mankind. While in the womb, Vamana Rishi meditated on Vishnu, and it is said that Vishnu taught Vamana Rishi the entire systems of Ashtanga Yoga. Vamana Rishi refused to be born until they had covered the whole curriculum.

Pattabhi Jois in his 1962 book “Yoga Mala” quoted Vamana Rishi as having said:

“Vina vinyasa yogena asanadin na karayet –

Oh yogi, do not do asana without vinyasa”

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