Letters on Yoga. Correspondence of Wincenty Lutosławski to William James Cover Image
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Listy o jodze. Wincenty Lutosławski do Williama Jamesa
Letters on Yoga. Correspondence of Wincenty Lutosławski to William James

Author(s): Agata Świerzowska
Subject(s): Social Sciences, Fine Arts / Performing Arts, Sociology, Health and medicine and law
Published by: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego
Keywords: Lutosławski; James; yoga; Vivekananda; correspondence
Summary/Abstract: Wincenty Lutosławski (1863–1954) – the Polish philosopher, writer, publicist, andabove all social activist, whom – as he believed – the providence entrusted a special mission – to lead the Polish nation to freedom, maintained a long‑term friendship with the American philosopher and psychologist William James (1842–1910). The eloquent, though still unexplored evidenced of this relationship are the letters that Lutosławski wrote for almost seventeen years to his friend. Lutosławski’s letters cover many various issues ranging from the mundane, though for the Polish philosopher important, financial problems to the sophisticated philosophical issues. One of the important themes appearing in the correspondence is also yoga, which Lutosławski discovered and, at least for some time, thought to be the solution for all his and his nation’s problems. Although James was never a yoga enthusiast and did not share Lutosławski’s passion for this discipline was well acquainted with the system, personally met Swami Vivekananda (recognized by Lutosławski as one of the best exponents of yoga) and was a sensitive and sympathetic reader of the Polish philosopher’s “yogic confessions”. The article is an initial attempt to present the main yoga themes appearing in the letters addressed by Lutosławski to James. They were placed in a wider context of Lutosławski’s thought to show the gradual emergence of the idea of yoga as a system designed to enable rebuilding and reviving the Polish nation, the system described by the Polish philosopher in his pioneering yoga book Rozwój potęgi woli [The Development of the Power of Will] (Warsaw 1909).

  • Page Range: 67-92
  • Page Count: 26
  • Publication Year: 2017
  • Language: Polish