Remember Jessamyn Stanley? How could you not? She’s the proudly fat, Black, queer yoga teacher and charismatic author of Every Body Yoga, who drops a lot more f-bombs than namastes and refuses to pray at the church of Lululemon. Now she’s back, here to take us even further on a personal and provocative journey into what it means to “practice yoga.”
Where Every Body Yoga, with 59,000 copies in print, taught us how to do yoga, Yoke tells us why. In Yoke, which draws its name from a literal translation of the Sanskrit root “yuj,” from which the word “yoga” derives, Jessamyn writes about what she calls the yoga of the everyday—a yoga that is not just about poses but about applying the hard lessons we learn on the mat to the even harder daily project of living. This yoga of the everyday is about finding within life’s toughest moments the same flexibility, strength, grounding energy, and core awareness found in a headstand or Tadasana or cobra pose. In a series of deeply honest, funny, gritty, thoughtful, and largely autobiographical essays, Yoke explores issues of self-love, body-positivity, race, sex and sexuality, cannabis, and more, all through the lens of an authentic yoga practice. Every reader is invited to find this authentic spirit of yoga in their own lives and practice. To yoke.