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Yoga means "to yoke"


Eight Limbs of Yoga

 

Yama: self-control, social ethical precepts

 

Niyama: observance of duty, personal ethical disciplines

 

Asana: physical postures

 

Pranayama: breath control, breathing excercises

 

Pratyahara: inhibition or withdrawal of the senses

 

Dharana: mental concentration

 

Dhyana: meditation or unbroken mental focus

 

Samadhi: absorption in the spirit or with the Absolute, enlightment

 

 

About Yoga


what is yoga?

 

Yoga means “union” or “to yoke” in Sanskrit.  It drives from the verbal root, yuj which means “join”.  It is the bases of the English word yoke, meaning to bind together or join.

 

 The common definition of yoga is the union of the individual soul with the universal spirit.  Yoga is both the practice and the experience of the ultimate freedom of the heart.  It is both a path to spiritual fulfillment and the experience of fulfillment itself.

 

Through the yoking of our bodies, minds, and hearts to a higher power of existence, we can awaken the shakti, or spiritual energy hidden within, and our highest capabilities are revealed.

 

The more often we experience the state of union through our yoga practice, the more we become established in an elevated vibratory state of consciousness.  So when we are confronted with stressful and challenging events in our life, which would normally knock us out of alignment, we are able to sustain our yogic state.  We are then better able to respond to difficult situations.


Sanskrit

 

what is Sanskrit?

Sanskrit is the sacred language of India and literally translated Sanskrit means “perfectly constructed speech”.  Sanskrit is the language in which mantras and relevant sacred scripts are written and spoken.  It is also the language of the true names of the asanas (postures), the third stage of yoga.

 

Surya Namaskar (Yoga's salute to the sun)

A Surya Namaskar sequence offers the perfect balance between strength and flexibility, contraction and expansion, movement and stillness as the body goes from upside down to right side up, moving forward and back and from side to side. Yoga’s salute to the sun awakens and warms the whole body, preparing it for asana practice…the body moves through it s entire range of motion, linking the poses together on the wave of the breath. 

- Yoga Journal

 


 

 

 

 

Modern Paths of Yoga


the nine modern paths of yoga

Bhakti

the yoga of devotion

Hatha

the yoga of the body

Jnana 

the yoga of wisdom

Karma

the yoga of service

Kundalini

the yoga of latent spiritual awareness

Mantra

the yoga of sound

Raja

the yoga of the mind

Tantra

the yoga of sexual polarity

Yantra 

the yoga of vision

Symbol 'OM'

 

The Sanskrit symbol for OM, the primordial syllable exemplifying the vibrational power of sound.

 

Om!  This syllable is the whole world The past, the present, the future---everything is just the word Om

 

- Mandukya Upanishad

OM does not necessarily mean anything.  It is merely the sound of the Sanskrit vowels vocalized.  It is the primordial sound in Sanskrit.  It brings the mind to a calm, primed place, from which a single pointed focus through meditation and asana practices is brought about.  Reciting OM alone is also chanting, but when added to other Sanskrit words or sacred names, which resound in vibrations throughout the body, the possibilities become limitless.  Chanting Sanskrit is yet another tool to reach enlightenment

 

- Living yoga

 

 

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