For many people television is the only window on the world at large. Because of the skeptical nature of television it is somewhat uncommon to see the fantastic elements of life presented among the more mundane. The television program THAT’S INCREDIBLE! was dedicated to breaking this paradigm and expanding the experience of the audience.
To that end the show introduced the Yogi Kudu a classically trained yogi who was able to demonstrate his skills in that most mundane of southern California locations- the swimming pool.
A large, muscular man the Yogi Kudu would nonetheless fold himself into a two foot square plexiglass cube. This contortionist feat was incredible enough but then the Yogi Kudu would have something done with the cube- like being lowered into the swimming pool for 15 minutes. More than long enough for a commercial break!
How did he do it? By consciously lowering his heartbeat and metabolism the Yogi Kudu and yogis in general can radically alter their physical state. This control over the mental state is not done as an end unto itself but rather as a practice whose ultimate goal is to calm and master the mind.
Treating the physical body as merely an off-shoot and result of the mental process is a yogic way to direct spiritual progress. One uses the body and its physical abilities as a marker to ascertain the movement toward spiritual attainment.
All manner of meta-physical abilities have been ascribed to yogis including flying and moving things by mind only.
But these actions are considered only practice or demonstration. The real yoga is happening in a deeper place, visible only to the practitioner.
The Yogi Kudu showed us amazing things, not to get us to try to master the same skills, but to show us that some of our assumptions fall short of the actual scope of human experience.
What better place to demonstrate this than in an everyday swimming pool?