Yoga: The Secret of Life
Given punk’s anti-dogmatic and religious credo, the advent of “Krishna core” was in the was viewed with suspicion, as it seems to be at odds with the nihilistic mindset that it was fuelled by.
Eventually, through bands like the Bad Brains and their Rastafarian beliefs and New York Hardcore bands like the Antidote, Cro Mags and Cause for Alarm , who started to explore Krishna Consciousness, a foundation was laid upon which bands like Shelter and 108 founded their endeavours to not merely connect with the Hare Krishna movement but make it their sole objective and raison d’etre.
Prominent figureheads like Ray Cappo and Porcell started to fully immerse in the lifestyle, learn more about it at the source on the subcontinent, and began to share their learnings and wisdom. In the case of Porcell, it meant that over time he has firmly established his yoga practice and become an internationally acclaimed yoga teacher.
It was through him that I initially learned about yoga and its nature, i.e. its facets of balance, breathwork, focus, flexibility, muscular power and determination, which eventually made me join classes wherever I roamed. I specifically liked the challenging aspects and the growth that came with the various stages that I have had to master.
In conversations with the uninitiated, I still often find a sceptical approach, which is fair enough and does certainly not spurn me on to change their mind. However, I usually recommend to check yoga out for themselves to learn more about the spiritual and physical aspects behind it. Yoga: The Secret of Life is a coffee table book that in a visual and photodocumentary manner, accompanied by essays and personal accounts, of how yoga practice has impacted and transformed the lives of practitioners.
For the photos, Francesco Mastalia has applied special techniques and equipment to create ambrotype photographs, which not only add depth and dimension but aid in creating an otherworldly experience and deliberately add a mysterious aesthetic. In other words, the aesthetic of the book add a layer that should attract even those not planning to learn more about the subject matter itself.
Apart from illustrating the respective poses and each’s practitioner’s individual journey, Yoga: The Secret of Life encourages one to dig deeper in a bid to understand who we really are and questions our purpose.