Bishnu Ghosh’s College of Yoga and Physical Culture was established by Bishnu Charan Ghosh in 1930. Bishnu was the younger brother of Paramahansa Yogananda (Mukunda Lal Ghosh), author of Autobiography of a Yogi, and the son of Bhagavati Ghosh, disciple of the great Yogi Lahiri Mahasaya. When Bishnu Ghosh entered Mahasamadhi (left his body) in 1970, his school was left to his surviving son Biswanath (Bisu) Ghosh. With Bisu’s passing in April, 2008, the school has now passed on to his daughter Muktamala Mitra.
Bishnu Ghosh mentioned three main physical practices in Hatha yoga:
At the beginning asana was done mainly for meditation. After the 10th century asana was practiced for therapeutic objectives as well as for meditative practices. Prana-yama means breath and extension. This practice can be performed as independent exercises or in combination with asana. Asana becomes more effective when pranayama is introduced. And bandha, Ghosh described bandha as “controlling power”. According to Ghosh the successful yoga practitioner can control the internal organs, respiration, digestion and circulation with the practice of bandha.
Yogananda writes about Bishnu Ghosh’s enrollment in his school in Autobiography of a Yogi:
At Ranchi I organised an educational program for both grammar and high school grades. It included agricultural, industrial, commercial and academic subjects. The students were also taught yoga concentration and meditation, and a unique system of physical development, ‘Yogoda,’ whose principles I had discovered in 1916.
Realising that man’s body is like an electric battery, I reasoned that it could be recharged with energy through the direct agency of the human will. As no action, slight or large, is possible without willing, man can avail himself of his prime mover, will, to renew his bodily tissues without burdensome apparatus or mechanical exercises. I therefore taught the Ranchi students my simple “Yogoda” techniques by which the life force, centred in man’s medulla oblongata, can be consciously and instantly recharged from the unlimited supply of cosmic energy.
The boys responded wonderfully to this training, developing extraordinary ability to shift the life energy from one part of the body to another part, and to sit in perfect poise in difficult body postures. They performed feats of strength and endurance which many powerful adults could not equal. My youngest brother, Bishnu Charan Ghosh, joined the Ranchi school; he later became a leading physical culturist in Bengal.