People of India – Priyanka Devi Gupta

Priya Priyanka has been practicing Sivanandas’ Hatha Yoga since she was 17. She spent months in ashrams teaching and assisting, yet wanted to deepen her awareness and understanding of the breath and embarked on a journey of Vipassana meditation.  She has continued to explore other forms such as Acro Yoga,  Kundalini, Jivamukti, Anusara, Partner and Yin Yoga. The different styles have served to enrich her teaching abilities since she teaches a traditional form of personalized yoga; catering to expats, diplomats and ambassadors’ wives. This requires her to be well versed in all the forms of yoga, that are being offered in the 21st century, and allows her to blend the traditional with the new wave that has taken the world by storm. Her free time is spent learning and teaching at yoga festivals, travelling and learning different dance forms such as kizomba, bachatta and salsa.

What inspired you to start yoga and teaching?
*Teaching yoga is very meditative. It keeps me in the present and reminds me to embrace and enjoy life.

An anecdote which epitomises your India?
*How about a word? Chaos

One thing that you can’t live without?
*A cook

One thing that you hate?
*The lack of freedom to go out in the evening due to safety issues

If  you could change one thing about India what would it be?
*One? Ooh thats going to be tough…safety at night, ligthing, roads, urination… the colonial mindset we’ve been left with. The narrow minded people, growing stupidity, hypocrisy, intolerance….

Who is your greatest inspiration?
*My dad

What is your favourite quote?

*What if our religion was each other. If our practice was our life. If prayer, our words. What if the temple was the Earth. If forests were our church. If holy water—the rivers, lakes, and oceans. What if meditation was our relationships. If the teacher was life. If wisdom was self-knowledge. If love was the center of our being.” ~ Ganga White

I have noticed huge changes in India over the last few years but what is the biggest change you have noticed in India over the last 10 years?
*The increasing nightlife and the rising intolerance.

What do you think are the biggest challenges India faces over the next ten years?
*We will be a very divided nation very soon.

Which is the destination at the top of your bucket list?

What is the one place you visited that you have NO desire to return to?

Book or Movie?
*Movie – Life of Brian  (seen a hundred times)

I am doing a survey to find India’s most popular breakfast, what is yours?
*Idli sambhar

In retrospect, what is the one thing you wish you could have told your 20 year old self?
*Practice yoga and breathing (pranayam) more seriously.

You can find out more about Priyanka at:


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