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History of


Shiva taught this yoga system to the great warrior Arjuna prior to the battle of Kurukshetra,
(where Krishna spoke the “Baghavad Gita” to Arjuna.) This encounter is documented in the
Mahabharata chapter 28 “Pasupata”. It was about 3000 years B.C. Arjuna and His family had
lost their kingdom in a gambling match. While the rest of his family made a pilgrimage
around India for 12 years Arjuna, with an uncontrolled mind, went up into the Himalayas
to obtain celestial weapons and divine answers to his predicament. High in the
mountains Arjuna got into an argument with a Forrest dweller over some game, When a
fight broke out the Forrester gained advantage over Arjuna. Praying to Shiva for help,
the Forrester immediately revealed himself as Shiva. Thus, Arjuna’s instruction began.
First Arjuna had to learn to control his Mind and his senses with breath, Then Shiva
taught him how to gather and generate his powerful life force through his spine, into his
chakras and energize his whole being. Shiva describes the Kundalini energy which flows
through the Chakras and through the body to be like lightning in the “Shiva Sutras.”

Shiva granted Arjuna 3 Things:
1. The “Pasupata” weapon. Similar to the Dhanda that he used to enliven with his spiritual
energy. It could be shot like an arrow form a bow or thrown like a spear with deadly force when
activated by a certain mantra. It was needed against the great warrior Karna.
2. A protection mudra, named after him. using these psychic currents
3. A Dhanda yoga form reenacting his journey from anger to humility on his physical and
emotional journey.

This knowledge was preserved by a tribe in India called the Pyu, sometimes spelled Hpyu and
pronounced pew.

The Peaceful Pyu
There were several early tribes from India, Tibet and China. According to Hindu
scholars. The most notable one was the Pyu people who migrated from India into Burma to
escape from numerous wars between various kingdoms in eastern India. They were “Brahman”
or from the priestly caste. According to Hindu historians, the term “Burma” derives from the
Indian word “Brahmin”. The Pyu established a highly peaceful Hindu kingdom in the great
Irrawaddy Valley of Burma called “Sri Ksetra”.

Chinese Buddhist pilgrims who traveled and studied at Sri Ksetra described this kingdom as a
“peaceful land,” a “holy land,” and “the land of a thousand temples.” Pilgrims from the
surrounding states visited various monasteries of this region.

One of the earliest written records of Chinese emissaries and traders traveling on this route
reported (around 500 B.C.) that:

“Early in the morning with the rising sun, young and old men of villages and towns practiced
elaborate sets of exercises using their bamboo and wooden long staff. They performed their
vigorous sequence of exercises, standing, sitting, kneeling and squatting. These exercises were
supervised by elders.”

By the 3 rd Century AD, they had built their elegant capital at Sri Ksetra with hundreds of golden
stupas, temples and monasteries. Their high cultural ideals embraced spiritual beliefs of
Brahmanism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Tantrism, mysticism, shamanism and animism. Here, using

the Koghan system of generating psychic currents along with the Dhanda, Longi, and Letha yoga
forms, they developed Hanthawaddy yoga

These river valleys or deltas were known as Waddy. Hantha means peaceful, hence
Hanthawaddy (place of peace). This yoga system developed utilizing the Koghan system
with the nine zones, the alignment of the staff (Dhanda) training, and with the controlled
breath and energy meditation of Min Zin became known as Hanthawaddy (peaceful place).
Our body is the place or temple. Since other streams and rivers join in the valleys there is
reference to “joining” of that peaceful place. This is what we should find or establish within our

The Pyu settled in these river delta areas because they were fertile and protected by the
mountains. The rivers carry away debris and waste as well as bring in life and fresh nutrients.
Similarly, the debris of trauma that gets trapped in our bodies gets dislodged and carried away by
the force of our psychic currents as it brings nutrients for healing. This is the answer to the
question“How can I deal with this trauma?”

This yoga system also makes the energy work of Min Zin tangible which takes the form of
meditation to a higher level.

Hanthawaddy Yoga

has a unique pattern of breath combined with the specific motion of the
body as it flows from posture to posture. In Hanthawaddy Yoga the goal is a peaceful mind and
not achieving the posture itself. The posture is just trying to help you achieve the goal of inner
peace. However; correct postures are essential to provide us with the energizing of the chakras. If
the posture is done incorrectly, you won’t have synchronization. Inhale to center, set three
specific triggers and exhale on the twist or bend away from center. Since Hanthawaddy has its
origin in the ancient Hatha Yoga system, any movement one direction from center is balanced by
a movement the other direction. Simplicity of motion is the goal. Stress and trauma, like debris,
need to move through and flow to release or flush from the body. This system can be an answer
to the question “How do I solve this trauma so that it will not accumulate”? Trauma, tension, and
stress accumulate in the back, muscles, colon, etc. Even emotional turmoil needs to flow away
from us or we can become slaves to our emotions. Hanthawaddy is a form of “emotional
hygiene”. Every morning we should be washing our emotions from a posture of anger to a
posture of peace. We need specific” asanas” or postures to generate energy through certain areas
of the body and “prana “pattern of breath which controls the flow of life force. Out of the 63
Hanthawaddy postures I have included the core 33 postures which covers all major areas of the
body. With the relaxation currents of the breathing and the pathways which open through the
movement we are able to release and flush away the traumas and awaken our own healing

This yoga requires three things
I. Motivation

II. Self-discipline – regularity
a. concentration- focus
b. relaxation
c. visualization
1. breath pattern - visualize
2. pathways of energy

3. visualize peace
III. Perseverance and Endurance

Revival and Preservation of These Systems
Anant Krishna Vaidya was an internationally renowned Yogi from India. From 1880-1940, he
taught the philosophy, principles, and practice of yoga as the foundation for physical health and
fitness, physical culture, athletics and sports, and also for emotional and spiritual growth. In
1914, he founded Hanuman Vyayam Prasarak Mandal at the city of Amravati in India. He also
restored, revived, and systemized some of the ancient systems using the staff, rope, and stone:
along with various yogic asanas to develop strength, stamina, suppleness, and stability for
physical, athletic, and martial training.

Around 1935, U Ba Than Gyi, who later became the director of Health and Physical Education,
and Sports and Athletics in the Ministry of Education in Burma, became one of the many
disciples of Anant Krishna Vaidya. Some of Vaidyas’s yoga exercises and training methods for
sports and athletics were incorporated into the curriculum for physical education programs.
After World War II, U Ba Than Gyi established the Bando Meditation Center in December 1945
in the city of Maymo in northern Burma. U Ba Than Gyi also attempted to integrate some of the
teachings of Anant Krishna Vaidya and the ancient Hypu monk’s system, which were still
practiced by a handful of Brahmin clans in remote towns such as Homalin, Halin,Tamu,
Kalamyo, and Amarapura. With his dedicated staff members, he succeeded in organizing,
classifying, and categorizing various yoga postures, exercises and drills. U Ba Than Gyi’s son,
Dr. Maung Gyi, later brought these systems as well as other systems to America.

U Ba Than Gyi About Sayaji U Ba Than Gyi | American Bando Association

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Dr. Maung Gyi's Ordination ceremony conducted by his holiness Sayadow

Notice the Monk Staff

It is we deep gratitude we give thanks to Dr. Maung Gyi for dedicating his life to bring back and preserve these ancient yoga forms.

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