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Your Practice

  1. An introduction to yoga
  2. An Introduction to Yoga by Annie Besant
  3. Yoga And Asana

This was the time when Yoga was being practised under the direct guidance of Guru and its spritual value was given special importance. It was a part of Upasana and yoga sadhana was inbuilt in their rituals.

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Sun was given highest importance during the vedic period. Pranayama was a part of daily ritual and to offer the oblation. Though Yoga was being practiced in the pre-Vedic period, the great Sage Maharshi Patanjali systematized and codified the then existing practices of Yoga, its meaning and its related knowledge through his Yoga Sutras.

After Patanjali, many Sages and Yoga Masters contributed greatly for the preservation and development of the field through their well documented practices and literature. Suryanamaskara Historical evidences of the existence of Yoga were seen in the pre-Vedic period B. The main sources, from which we get the information about Yoga practices and the related literature during this period, are available in Vedas 4 , Upanishads , Smritis, teachings of Buddhism, Jainism, Panini, Epics 2 , Puranas 18 etc. Tentatively, the period between BC - A. During this period, commentaries of Vyasa on Yoga Sutras and Bhagawadgita etc.

This period can be mainly dedicated to two great religious teachers of India —Mahavir and Buddha. The concept of Five great vows — Pancha mahavrata- by Mahavir and Ashta Magga or eightfold path by Buddha - can be well considered as early nature of Yoga sadhana. We find its more explicit explanation in Bhagawadgita which has elaborately presented the concept of Gyan yoga, Bhakti yoga and Karma Yoga. These three types of yoga are still the highest example of human wisdom and and even to day people find peace by following the methods as shown in Gita.

The very important commentary on Yoga sutra by Vyasa was also written. During this very period the aspect of mind was given importance and it was clearly brought out through Yoga sadhana, Mind and body both can be brought under control to experience equanimity. The period between A. The teachings of Suradasa, Tulasidasa, Purandardasa, Mirabai were the great contributors during this period.

The period between - A.

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This was the period when Vedanta, Bhakti yoga, Nathayoga or Hatha-yoga flourished. Now in the contemporary times, everybody has conviction about yoga practices towards the preservation, maintenance and promotion of health.

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Yoga has spread all over the world by the teachings of great personalities like Swami Shivananda, Shri T. Iyengar, Swami Satyananda Sarasvati and the like. Iyengar was the founder of the style of yoga known as "Iyengar Yoga" and was considered one of the foremost yoga teachers in the world Clearing Misconceptions: For many, the practice of yoga is restricted to Hatha Yoga and Asanas postures.

However, among the Yoga Sutras, just three sutrasare dedicated to asanas. But while stretching is certainly involved, yoga is really about creating balance in the body through developing both strength and flexibility. Most types of yoga are more concerned with mental and spiritual well-being than physical activity.

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Yoga teachers will often refer to "your practice," which means your individual experience with yoga as it develops over time. Yoga, first and foremost, must be approached in accordance to your comfort zone. No pose, technique, or instructor behavior will instill any benefit if you are at all uncomfortable. Because yoga is so diverse, there is plenty of room for interpretation from one person to the next, even within the same classroom.

You need to work at your own pace; not mine, not the neighbor's, not even your own of a week ago. Don't ever let anyone physically push your body into a position beyond that which you are able to assume by yourself; don't let anyone coax you to go further than you wish to go. This is your practice; only you have the wisdom to dictate where your practice goes. Although the poses themselves do not change, your relationship to them will. Anyone can start a yoga practice, even if you don't feel like you are very flexible or very strong.

An introduction to yoga

These things will develop over time. Another great thing about thinking of yoga as "your practice" is that it encourages the noncompetitive spirit of yoga. One of the most difficult, but ultimately most liberating things about yoga is letting go of the ego and accepting that no one is better than anyone else.

Everyone is just doing their best on any given day. The amazing thing about yoga is that your practice is always evolving and changing so it never gets boring. Yoga classes may also include instruction on breathing, call and response chanting, meditation, or an inspirational reading by the teacher.

The variety and amount of this will depend on the individual teacher and the tradition in which they have trained. Typically, a yoga class at a gym will be more focused on the purely physical benefits of yoga, while one at a yoga center may delve more into the spiritual side. Some people find that the physical practice of yoga becomes a gateway into a spiritual exploration while others just enjoy a wonderful low-impact workout that makes them feel great.

Whatever your tendency, you will be able to find a yoga class that suits your style. There are many different styles of yoga being taught and practiced today. Although all of the styles are based on the same physical postures called poses , each has a particular emphasis. Here is a quick guide to the most popular types of yoga that can help you decode the schedule at your gym and figure out which class is right for you. Hatha is a very general term for slow-paced and gentle yoga, and can provide a good introduction to the basic yoga poses.

Vinyasa, which means breath-synchronized movement, tends to be a more vigorous style based on the performance of a series of poses called "Sun Salutations" in which movement is matched to the breath. Ashtanga, which means eight limbs in Sanskrit, is a fast-paced, intense style of yoga practice.

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A set series of poses is performed, always in the same order. Ashtanga practice is very physically demanding, because of the constant movement from one pose to the next. Ashtanga is the inspiration for what is often called "Power Yoga. This style of practice is most concerned with bodily alignment, which is the precise way in which your body should be positioned in each pose in order to obtain the maximum benefits of the pose and avoid injury. Iyengar practice usually emphasizes holding poses over long periods versus moving quickly from one pose to the next.

An Introduction to Yoga by Annie Besant

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Yoga And Asana

Close Preview. Toggle navigation Additional Book Information. Description Table of Contents Reviews. Summary With its promise of personal improvement, physical well-being and spiritual enrichment, yoga is enjoying a resurgence in popularity at the turn of the third millennium. To unravel the mystery of the discipline, its philosophies and relevance in contemporary life, the original text of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali must be explored.

This book offers the first accessible translation and commentary on Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. An introductory section examines the multidimensional aspects of yoga as philosophy, psychology, science, and religion, as well as exploring popular versions of yoga in the West.