4 May 2019 – Radio NZ Interview with Donna Farhi

Posted by Kathleen Powell on Saturday May 4th, 2019 at 9:26pm

Dear Iyengar Yogis

Many of you will have heard Donna Farhi speak to Kim Hill on Radio NZ this morning.

As an Iyengar community and Iyengar yoga practitioners some of what Donna said may have been confronting for us.  And, there may well be points that Donna made over the course of the interview with which you may take some issue or disagree with.  But from my perspective there were points we need to be considering and discussing as a community.  In some ways we already are.  In Abhijata’s words, teachers should have pure intention and wise discrimination when dealing with students or there is no place for them in Iyengar Yoga.

Donna was well-spoken and spoke her truth.  From the interview it seems that she has been very supportive of the #metoo movement in Iyengar yoga and in the wider yoga world.  We have to be thankful and credit her for that.  There is no place for physical, sexual or mental abuse in yoga.

The interview acknowledged Mr Iyengar’s valuable knowledge, innovation and contribution to yoga and that there are many really good Iyengar teachers.  This is where we stand.  Mr Iyengar was a brilliant teacher who shared the practice of yoga with the world.  We have learnt from him and people he taught – we value that.


All the Iyengar yoga teachers that I know have the utmost integrity, passion and commitment.  The name Iyengar within yoga circles is equated with quality and integrity.  As teachers and practitioners now is the time to show our compassion, our professionalism and our willingness to self-reflect.  We should be responsive rather than reactive, as this is what the practice teaches us.  Now is the time to step forward with courage, conviction and respect for what we have learnt from our practice.

If you haven’t yet viewed or listened to Ahbijata’s opening address to the US convention, please do, it is inspirational and worth seeing

I am grateful for my Iyengar yoga practice and my teachers.  If you have anything you wish to discuss arising from the interview please contact me

Jo Peden
Iyengar Yoga NZ




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