If you have never done yoga, you might have a few questions before jumping into your first class or establishing your own yoga practice. We have put together the basic concepts so that you feel more comfortable to join a class and understand the basic concepts of yoga.
Although the tradition of yoga is 5,000 years old, it is mainly attributed to the Sage Patanjali as the father of yoga, who transcribed the book, The Yoga Sutra, over 2,000 years ago. This sacred Sanskrit text is a compilation of 196 aphorisms in four chapters which outlines the Eight Limbs of Yoga offering wisdom and guidelines for living a meaningful and purposeful life.
The origin of yoga itself precedes the Yoga Sutra and is attributed to Lord Shiva as the first yogi (adi yogi) and Parvati, his wife, as the first student. The union of Shiva (consciousness and wisdom) and Parvati (creative energy shakti) symbolizes the completion of the whole through the fusion of male and female energies. It is also symbolic of the balance that the practice of yoga creates within ourselves.
To this day, The Yoga Sutra and The Bhagwad Gita, another sacred Hindu scripture gives deep insight on yoga, are capable of transforming ones personality and are sources of inspiration to countless self- help books published around the world.
So what the term yoga defines- yoga means union- the union between self and the individual self.
Maharishi Patanjali, founder of yoga defined yoga as “Yogachittavrittinirodhah”, which means “Yoga is the removal of the fluctuations of the mind”. “Chitta” is mind or consciousness, “Vrittis” are thought impulses and “Nirodah” is removal. In other words, cleaning the mind of emotions and thoughts is yoga.
Through mediation we can still the mind and get to know who we really are. As we transform and balance our personality, our koshas (the sheaths), we also change on a cellular level, which positively influence our blood and energy flow.
It is a scientific fact that our cells change every seven years and our bodies are renewed. On average, it takes approximately 23 to 60 seconds for blood to make complete circuit in our bodies. When prana through blood reach each and every cell then it creates natural balance in whole system. Yoga says that imbalance or illness in our personality is due to imbalance or disruption or lack of flow of prana. Yoga slows down the process through controlling the breath and relaxing the mind and the body. Only in a relaxed state healing takes place. No modern exercise can relax us in the way yoga can.
We start the discipline from the body by having different movements then to breath management then to the mind management with the integrated and holistic approach to evolve as a better human being.
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