Theos Casimir Hamati Bernard  — was an explorer and author , known for his work on yoga and religious studies, particularly in Tibetan Buddhism. He was the nephew of Pierre Arnold Bernard , "Oom the Omnipotent",  like him becoming a yoga celebrity. His account of old-style hatha yoga as a spiritual path, Hatha Yoga: The Report of A Personal Experience , is a rare insight into the way these practices, known from medieval documents like the Hatha Yoga Pradipika , actually worked. His biographer Paul Hackett states that many of the travel experiences that Bernard relates in his books are exaggerated or fabricated. There is however no doubt that he became fluent in the Tibetan language, travelled in Tibet, met senior figures and gathered an unmatched collection of photographs, field notes, manuscripts and ritual objects. Aura and Theos, still a baby, went to live in her home town of Tombstone, Arizona.
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Theos Casimir Hamati Bernard  — was an explorer and author , known for his work on yoga and religious studies, particularly in Tibetan Buddhism. He was the nephew of Pierre Arnold Bernard , "Oom the Omnipotent",  like him becoming a yoga celebrity.
His account of old-style hatha yoga as a spiritual path, Hatha Yoga: The Report of A Personal Experience , is a rare insight into the way these practices, known from medieval documents like the Hatha Yoga Pradipika , actually worked. His biographer Paul Hackett states that many of the travel experiences that Bernard relates in his books are exaggerated or fabricated.
There is however no doubt that he became fluent in the Tibetan language, travelled in Tibet, met senior figures and gathered an unmatched collection of photographs, field notes, manuscripts and ritual objects. Aura and Theos, still a baby, went to live in her home town of Tombstone, Arizona. As a student of liberal arts at the new University of Arizona from , he became seriously ill with rheumatic pneumonia after being thrown into a fountain during a hazing ritual on a cold day early in , and was taken home to recuperate.
Adams Beck 's The Story of Oriental Philosophy that it could provide "infinite energy", but none of the books gave any details on how to achieve any such results. From he trained in law at the University of Arizona, obtaining a bachelor's degree in and began an internship in His father also persuaded him to go back to Arizona to study philosophy, and from February he spent another two years there reading philosophy and psychology.
Theos never felt able to admit who his yoga guru was, and in his books such as his Heaven Lies Within Us , he invented a guru "In Arizona His biographer Douglas Veenhof notes that while as was customary in Tantra , he claimed to have been sworn to secrecy, he wrote "at great length" about his tantric practices, refusing only to speak about "the first thing that teachers of Buddhism or Yoga philosophy tell their students: the lineage of their teachers.
Running into debt, he discovered by a chance reading of Fortune magazine that he had a rich uncle in New York, Pierre Arnold Bernard , who had also trained under Hamati. They married on 3 August He gained his Master of Arts degree at Columbia in In , he toured India with his wife and father; both went home after a few months. In Calcutta he arranged a meeting with Lama Tharchin of Kalimpong , and studied the Tibetan language.
After nearly a year, he obtained permission in Sikkim from the British political officer to visit Tibet. He met several high officials of the government of Tibet, studied Tantric Yoga and collected many books on Tibetan Buddhism.
Bernard was an accomplished and energetic photographer, shooting "an astounding rolls of film 11, exposures as well as 20, feet of motion picture film "  during his three months in Tibet in a "near obsessive documentation"  of what he saw. In the view of Namiko Kunimoto, Bernard's photographs taken in the East served to authenticate the travel narrative and to construct Tibet "as a site of personal transformation. On his return to the United States in , claiming to be a lama ,  his experiences were published across the country over several weeks by the North American Newspaper Alliance and Bell Syndicate.
Bernard was also featured in popular magazines, including five cover stories in Family Circle in and , followed shortly by his second book, Heaven Lies Within Us , which explored Hatha Yoga under the guise of an autobiography.
However, he had indeed learnt fluent Tibetan, travelled in Tibet, met senior lamas and government officials, and returned with an unmatched collection of photographs, film, field notes, and manuscripts, from essentially the only moment when Tibet had allowed foreigners in, and from its final years as an independent country with a vibrant spiritual culture. His Tibetan collection included 22 bronze statues of Buddhist gods, 40 thangka paintings, 23 rugs, 25 mandalas , over cloth wood-block prints, 79 books, and many textiles, robes, hats, ritual implements, and household objects.
The collection is stored at the University of California, Berkeley. During the s Bernard completed his Ph. He had learnt these around , while studying at the University of Arizona. It was one of the earliest references in the West, possibly the first in English, [b] on the asanas and other practices of hatha yoga, as described in texts such as Hatha Yoga Pradipika.
While working on Hatha Yoga , he met and in married the Polish opera star Ganna Walska , becoming her sixth and last husband. This proved impossible during the war. In they divorced and Walska renamed it to Lotusland. In , Bernard, with his third wife, Helen,  again visited northern India, on an expedition to the Ki monastery in Tibet in an attempt to discover special manuscripts.
In October, while in the hills of Punjab in what is now Pakistan, inter-communal violence associated with the Partition of India broke out. He and his Tibetan companion were shot, and their bodies thrown in a river. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Theos Bernard. Viola Wertheim m. Bernard, Theos's father. Columbia University. Retrieved 11 August The Yoga Tradition of the Mysore Palace 2nd ed. Abhinav Publications. Retrieved 25 February Omnipotent Oom. Archived from the original on 24 March Retrieved 23 March Trans Asia Photography Review.
University of Chicago Press. Retrieved 23 February Oxford Research Encyclopedias. Hatha yoga. Viking Adult. Asana Hatha yoga Yoga as exercise Yoga. Yoga philosophy Bhagavad Gita Yoga Vasistha. Pranava yoga Nada yoga. Lotus position Roots of Yoga Shinshin-toitsu-do. Yogachara Zazen. Shingon Buddhism Tendai. Book Commons Wikiquote Wikisource texts Category.
December 10, Pasadena, California. Explorer , author , expert on Tibetan Buddhism , experiencing old-style hatha yoga.
ISBN 13: 9780877280590
Bernhard deals at length with the many postures, purification and breathing exercises used in the Orient by those yogis who have attained enlightenment. The extent to which he has succeeded in mastering these practices is partly shown by thirty-seven photographs. He shows their effectiveness by describing his own experiences when he underwent the severe discipline of a yogic retreat while studying under the guidance of a well-trained yogi in India. In this way he bridged the gap between theory and practice, demonstrating that yoga is a scientific way to achieve well-being which can b used by a Westerner in the midst of everyday life. By quoting from the ancient yoga texts, great authenticity is given to this science and shows the extent that the yogis went to, in developing it.
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