Acem School of Yoga teaches a simple, classical meditative yoga – different from many modern, more dynamic and forceful versions of yoga practiced today. Our focus on physical yoga is rooted in a meditative tradition. Close to 100 000 people world-wide have learned Acem Meditation.
Acem School og Yoga is the oldest yoga school in Norway, founded by Are Holen in 1968, before the first major yoga wave reached the West.
For a long time, yoga did not receive much attention in India and Western societies. The growing interest in recent decades has been inspiring, but has not been noted with undivided pleasure. Yoga today is embraced and modified by a number of trendy body disciplines that are quite at odds with its deeper goals. Concerns about such developments have been widely expressed in the question: Is yoga spoiling yoga?
In India, yoga originated in the mists of time and was eventually written down as a classical philosophical system of thought in the Yoga Sutra. Physical postures, however, were not known from texts before the 14th century. The bodily postures and breathing practices as we know them today have probably been passed on for centuries in a variety of forms and contexts on the Indian continent. There is no clear lineage of schools or masters. It seems likely that the postures and breathing practices have an inherent strength and effect that have subsisted in spite of changing usage and environments – in the East as well as later in the West.
Nevertheless, much of what is taught in yoga schools, health spas and health studios nowadays is quite far removed from classical and meditative yoga. There has been a growing need for a book that integrates meditative practice into yoga. Hopefully, our book Meditative Yoga – integrating body, breath and mind will contribute to a change of direction.