Millions have been inspired by 98-year-old Yoga Master Tao Porchon-Lynch -- her fantastical journey, invaluable insights and boundless vitality. Half-French, Half-Indian, she discovered yoga when she was eight years old in Pondicherry and studied with a Who’s Who of the Spiritual World including Sri Aurobindo, B.K.S. Iyengar, K. Pattabhi Jois, Swami Prabhavananda, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and Dr. Roman Ostoja. In 2012, Guinness World Records named her Oldest Yoga Teacher. She still teaches six to eight classes a week in New York, and leads programs across the globe sharing her message of optimism, Oneness and mindful living to diverse audiences and forums. She has presented at the United Nations, the Indian Consulate for International Day of Non-Violence, the World Government Summit in Dubai, the Age of Happiness Festival in Montenegro, and the Young Executives Society in Slovenia. She has also done a TEDx talk at Columbia University and shared the stage with His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama at the Newark Peace Education Summit. Dr. Deepak Chopra said, “One of the most acclaimed yoga teachers of our century, Tao Porchon-Lynch… is a mentor to me who embodies the spirit of yoga and is an example of Ageless Body Timeless Mind. Like yoga, she teaches us to let go and to have exquisite awareness in every moment.”
Called the “Real-Life Forrest Gump” by ABC News, Tao participated in historic events most of us only read about--from marching with Mahatma Gandhi in the 1930 Salt March to helping Jews escape the Nazis during World War II as a French Resistance fighter under General Charles de Gaulle. She performed nightly in London’s top cabarets during the Nazi Bombing Blitz and developed a reputation for being fearless. She was invited to train over 2,000 American WACs (Women Auxiliary Corps) in Salzburg to perform for the U.S. troops. After the war, she became a couture model for designers such as Coco Chanel and Jeanne Lanvin, and an actress under contract with MGM in Hollywood. She worked for UNESCO in Paris and was Vice President at Unitel, which pioneered “global TV” in the early 1950s. She also was a screenwriter and film producer promoting international storylines. She later became a co-founder of the American Wine Society and published a wine newspaper for thirty years in forty-seven countries.
Tao has been a lifelong activist and has participated in many marches over the years. She greatly admired Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and attended the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, as well as Dr. King’s funeral in 1968. She has supported various animal rights and environmental organizations, and sees yoga as a gateway to peace. In 1995, she participated in Yoga for Peace in Israel, and has even taught yoga to 90 Department of Defense personnel at the Pentagon. She started ballroom dancing at age 87 and has since won over 741 First Place Awards. In 2015, she appeared on America’s Got Talent dancing with her 26-year-old partner. Her YouTube views have garnered over three million views and her autobiography, Dancing Light: The Spiritual Side of Being Through the Eyes of a Modern Yoga Master, has won ten national and international awards. She has been covered by media from CNN to O: The Oprah Magazine, and exemplifies her mantra, There Is Nothing You Cannot Do. In January 2017, Tao was featured with her student/collaborator Teresa Kay-Aba Kennedy in the “Power of She”campaign for Athleta clothing company celebrating the power of women and positivity. For more on Tao, including her blog, go to www.thetaoexperience.com.