spiritual practices from ancient India

Yoga ( ; [ 1 ] sanskrit : योग, alight. ‘yoke ‘ or ‘union ‘ marked [ joːɡɐ ] ) is a group of physical, mental, and apparitional practices or disciplines which originated in ancient India and aim to control ( yoke ) and inactive the take care, recognizing a detached witness-consciousness untouched by the mind ( Chitta ) and everyday suffering ( Duḥkha ). There is a wide variety show of schools of yoga, practices, and goals in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism, [ 3 ] [ 4 ] [ 5 ] and traditional and mod yoga is practiced worldwide. [ 6 ] Two general theories exist on the origins of yoga. The linear model holds that yoga has Vedic origins, as reflected in the Vedic textual corpus, and influenced Buddhism ; according to author Edward Fitzpatrick Crangle, this model is chiefly supported by Hindu scholars. According to the synthesis exemplary, yoga is a synthesis of autochthonal, non-Vedic and vedic elements ; this mannequin is favoured in western eruditeness.

yoga is first mentioned in the Rigveda, and is referred to in a number of the Upanishads. [ 10 ] The first known appearance of the news “ yoga ” with the same think of as the modern terminus is in the Katha Upanishad, which was probably composed between the one-fifth and third gear centuries BCE. [ 14 ] [ 15 ] Yoga continued to develop as a taxonomic survey and exercise during the fifth and sixth centuries BCE in ancient India ‘s ascetic and Śramaṇa movements. The most comprehensive textbook on Yoga, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, date to the early centuries of the Common Era ; [ note 1 ] Yoga doctrine became known as one of the six orthodox philosophic schools ( Darśanas ) of Hinduism in the second one-half of the first base millennium CE. [ web 1 ] Hatha yoga text began to emerge between the ninth and 11th centuries, originating in tantra. [ 20 ] The term “ yoga ” in the western global frequently denotes a advanced phase of Hatha yoga and a posture-based physical fitness, stress-relief and rest proficiency, consisting largely of the asana ; [ 23 ] this differs from traditional yoga, which focuses on meditation and release from blase attachments. [ 24 ] It was introduced by guru from India after the success of Swami Vivekananda ‘s adaptation of yoga without asanas in the late 19th and early twentieth centuries. Vivekananda introduced the Yoga Sutras to the West, and they became big after the 20th-century achiever of hatha yoga .


The Sanskrit noun योग yoga is derived from the root yuj (युज्) “ to attach, join, harness, yoke ”. Yoga is a blood relation of the English news “ yoke ”. According to Mikel Burley, the beginning use of the ancestor of the discussion “ yoga ” is in hymn 5.81.1 of the Rigveda, a dedication to the rising Sun-god, where it has been interpreted as “ couple ” or “ control ”. [ 30 ] [ note 2 ] Pāṇini ( 4th c. BCE ) wrote that the terminus yoga can be derived from either of two roots : yujir yoga ( to yoke ) or yuj samādhau ( “ to concentrate ” ). [ 32 ] In the context of the Yoga Sutras, the root yuj samādhau ( to concentrate ) is considered the correct etymology by traditional commentators. In accord with Pāṇini, Vyasa ( who wrote the first comment on the Yoga Sutras ) says that yoga means samadhi ( concentration ). [ 35 ] In the Yoga Sutras ( 2.1 ), kriyāyoga is yoga ‘s “ practical ” view : the “ union with the supreme ” in the operation of everyday duties. A person who practices yoga, or follows the yoga doctrine with a high tied of commitment, is called a yogi ; a female berra may besides be known as a yogini. [ 37 ]

Definition in classical music text

The term yoga has been defined in a number of ways in indian philosophic and religious traditions .

Source Text Approx. Date Definition of Yoga
Vaisesika sutra c. 4th century BCE “Pleasure and suffering arise as a result of the drawing together of the sense organs, the mind and objects. When that does not happen because the mind is in the self, there is no pleasure or suffering for one who is embodied. That is yoga” (5.2.15-16)
Katha Upanishad last centuries BCE “When the five senses, along with the mind, remain still and the intellect is not active, that is known as the highest state. They consider yoga to be firm restraint of the senses. Then one becomes un-distracted for yoga is the arising and the passing away” (6.10-11)
Bhagavad Gita c. 2nd century BCE “Be equal minded in both success and failure. Such equanimity is called Yoga” (2.48)
“ yoga is skill in action ” ( 2.50 ) ” Know that which is called yoga to be separation from contact with suffering ” ( 6.23 ) .
Yoga Sutras of Patanjali c. first centuries CE[note 1] 1.2. yogas chitta vritti nirodhah – “Yoga is the calming down the fluctuations/patterns of mind”
1.3. Then the Seer is established in his own essential and fundamental nature.
1.4. In other states there is assimilation (of the Seer) with the modifications (of the mind).
Yogācārabhūmi-Śāstra (Sravakabhumi), a Mahayana Buddhist Yogacara work 4th century CE “Yoga is fourfold: faith, aspiration, perseverance and means” (2.152)
Kaundinya’s Pancarthabhasya on the Pasupatasutra 4th century CE “In this system, yoga is the union of the self and the Lord” (I.I.43)
Yogaśataka a Jain work by Haribhadra Suri 6th century CE “With conviction, the lords of Yogins have in our doctrine defined yoga as the concurrence (sambandhah) of the three [correct knowledge (sajjñana), correct doctrine (saddarsana) and correct conduct (saccaritra)] beginning with correct knowledge, since [thereby arises] conjunction with liberation….In common usage this [term] yoga also [denotes the Self’s] contact with the causes of these [three], due to the common usage of the cause for the effect.” (2, 4).
Linga Purana 7th-10th century CE “By the word ‘yoga’ is meant nirvana, the condition of Shiva.” (I.8.5a)
Brahmasutra-bhasya of Adi Shankara c. 8th century CE “It is said in the treatises on yoga: ‘Yoga is the means of perceiving reality’ (atha tattvadarsanabhyupāyo yogah)” (2.1.3)
Mālinīvijayottara Tantra, one of the primary authorities in non-dual Kashmir Shaivism 6th-10th century CE “Yoga is said to be the oneness of one entity with another.” (MVUT 4.4–8)
Mrgendratantravrtti, of the Shaiva Siddhanta scholar Narayanakantha 6th-10th century CE “To have self-mastery is to be a Yogin. The term Yogin means “one who is necessarily “conjoined with” the manifestation of his nature…the Siva-state (sivatvam)” (MrTaVr yp 2a)
Śaradatilaka of Lakshmanadesikendra, a Shakta Tantra work 11th century CE “Yogic experts state that yoga is the oneness of the individual Self (jiva) with the atman. Others understand it to be the ascertainment of Siva and the Self as non-different. The scholars of the Agamas say that it is a Knowledge which is of the nature of Siva’s Power. Other scholars say it is the knowledge of the primordial Self.” (SaTil 25.1–3b)
Yogabija, a Hatha yoga work 14th century CE “The union of apana and prana, one’s own rajas and semen, the sun and moon, the individual Self and the supreme Self, and in the same way the union of all dualities, is called yoga. ” (89)


The ultimate goals of yoga are stilling the mind and gaining insight, resting in detached awareness, and liberation ( Moksha ) from saṃsāra and duḥkha : a summons ( or discipline ) leading to integrity ( Aikyam ) with the godhead ( Brahman ) or with one ‘s Self ( Ātman ). This goal varies by philosophic or theological system. In the classical Astanga yoga system, the ultimate goal of yoga is to achieve samadhi and stay in that state as arrant awareness. According to Knut A. Jacobsen, yoga has five principal meanings :

  1. A disciplined method for attaining a goal
  2. Techniques of controlling the body and mind
  3. A name of a school or system of philosophy ( darśana)
  4. With prefixes such as “hatha-, mantra-, and laya-, traditions specialising in particular yoga techniques
  5. The goal of Yoga practice

David Gordon White writes that yoga ‘s core principles were more or less in place in the fifth century CE, and variations of the principles developed over clock time :

  1. A meditative means of discovering dysfunctional perception and cognition, as well as overcoming it to release any suffering, find inner peace, and salvation. Illustration of this principle is found in Hindu texts such as the Bhagavad Gita and Yogasutras, in a number of Buddhist Mahāyāna works, as well as Jain texts.
  2. The raising and expansion of consciousness from oneself to being coextensive with everyone and everything. These are discussed in sources such as in Hinduism Vedic literature and its epic Mahābhārata, the Jain Praśamaratiprakarana, and Buddhist Nikaya texts.
  3. A path to omniscience and enlightened consciousness enabling one to comprehend the impermanent (illusive, delusive) and permanent (true, transcendent) reality. Examples of this are found in Hinduism Nyaya and Vaisesika school texts as well as Buddhism Mādhyamaka texts, but in different ways.
  4. A technique for entering into other bodies, generating multiple bodies, and the attainment of other supernatural accomplishments. These are, states White, described in Tantric literature of Hinduism and Buddhism, as well as the Buddhist Sāmaññaphalasutta. James Mallinson, however, disagrees and suggests that such fringe practices are far removed from the mainstream Yoga’s goal as meditation-driven means to liberation in Indian religions.[50]

According to White, the last principle relates to legendary goals of yoga commit ; it differs from yoga ‘s practical goals in South asian idea and commit since the begin of the Common Era in Hindu, Buddhist, and Jain philosophical schools .


There is no consensus on yoga ‘s chronology or origins early than its development in ancient India. There are two across-the-board theories explaining the origins of yoga. The linear model holds that yoga has Vedic origins ( as reflected in Vedic textbook ), and influenced Buddhism. This model is chiefly supported by Hindu scholars. According to the synthesis model, yoga is a deduction of autochthonal, non-Vedic practices with vedic elements. This mannequin is favoured in western scholarship. Speculations about yoga began to emerge in the early Upanishads of the first half of the inaugural millennium BCE, with expositions besides appearing in Jain and Buddhist texts c. 500 – c. 200 BCE. Between 200 BCE and 500 CE, traditions of Hindu, Buddhist, and Jain philosophy were taking shape ; teachings were collected as sutras, and a philosophical organization of Patanjaliyogasastra began to emerge. The Middle Ages saw the development of a number of yoga satellite traditions. It and early aspects of indian philosophy came to the care of the educate western populace during the mid-19th hundred .


analogue model

According to Edward Fitzpatrick Crangle, Hindu researchers have favoured a analogue hypothesis which attempts “ to interpret the origin and early growth of indian brooding practices as a consecutive growth from an aryan genesis ” ; [ note 3 ] traditional hinduism regards the Vedas as the reservoir of all apparitional cognition. [ note 4 ] Edwin Bryant wrote that authors who support autochthonal Aryanism besides tend to support the linear model .

Synthesis model

Heinrich Zimmer was an exponent of the synthesis exemplary, arguing for non-Vedic easterly states of India. According to Zimmer, Yoga is part of a non-Vedic arrangement which includes the Samkhya school of Hindu philosophy, Jainism and Buddhism : “ [ Jainism ] does not derive from Brahman-Aryan sources, but reflects the cosmology and anthropology of a much older pre-Aryan upper berth classify of northeastern India [ Bihar ] – being rooted in the same subsoil of archaic metaphysical speculation as Yoga, Sankhya, and Buddhism, the other non-Vedic indian systems. ” [ note 5 ] Richard Gombrich and Geoffrey Samuel believe that the śramaṇa movement originated in non-Vedic Greater Magadha. Thomas McEvilley favors a composite mannequin in which a pre-Aryan yoga prototype existed in the pre-Vedic period and was refined during the Vedic time period. [ 65 ] According to Gavin D. Flood, the Upanishads differ basically from the Vedic ritual custom and indicate non-Vedic influences. however, the traditions may be connected :

[ T ] his dichotomization is excessively simplistic, for continuities can undoubtedly be found between renunciation and vedic Brahmanism, while elements from non-Brahmanical, Sramana traditions besides played an important partially in the constitution of the renunciate ideal. [ note 6 ]

The ascetic traditions of the easterly Ganges knit are thought to drew from a coarse body of practices and philosophies, with proto-samkhya concepts of purusha and prakriti as a common denominator .

Indus Valley Civilisation

Karel Werner, Thomas McEvilley, and Mircea Eliade believe that the central visualize of the Pashupati seal is in a Mulabandhasana model, and the roots of yoga are in the Indus Valley Civilisation. This is rejected by Geoffrey Samuel, Andrea R. Jain, and Wendy Doniger as notional ; the intend of the number will remain nameless until Harappan script is deciphered, and the roots of yoga can not be linked to the IVC. [ 74 ] [ bill 7 ]

Earliest references ( 1000–500 BCE )

The Vedas, the lone textbook preserved from the early on Vedic period and codified between c. 1200 and 900 BCE, contain references to yogic practices primarily related to ascetics on the fringes of Brahmanism. [ 78 ] The Rigveda ‘s Nasadiya Sukta suggests an early Brahmanic contemplative tradition. [ note 8 ] Techniques for controlling breath and vital energies are mentioned in the Atharvaveda and in the Brahmanas ( the second level of the Vedas, composed c. 1000–800 BCE ). According to Flood, “ The Samhitas [ the mantras of the Vedas ] contain some references … to ascetics, namely the Munis or Keśins and the Vratyas. ” Werner wrote in 1977 that the Rigveda does not describe yoga, and there is small testify of practices. [ 78 ] The earliest description of “ an foreigner who does not belong to the Brahminic institution ” is found in the Keśin hymn 10.136, the Rigveda ‘s youngest book, which was codified around 1000 BCE. [ 78 ] Werner wrote that there were

… individuals who were active outside the tendency of Vedic fabulous creativity and the Brahminic religious orthodoxy and consequently short attest of their being, practices and achievements has survived. And such tell as is available in the Vedas themselves is bare and indirect. Nevertheless the collateral testify is strong adequate not to allow any doubt about the universe of spiritually highly gain wanderers. [ 78 ]

According to Whicher ( 1998 ), scholarship frequently fails to see the connection between the brooding practices of the rishis and late yoga practices : “ The proto-Yoga of the Vedic rishis is an early form of sacrificial mysticism and contains many elements characteristic of former Yoga that include : assiduity, brooding notice, ascetic forms of practice ( tapas ), breath control condition practiced in conjunction with the course session of consecrated hymn during the ritual, the notion of selflessness, impeccably accurate course session of hallowed words ( prefiguring mantra-yoga ), mystic experience, and the date with a reality far greater than our psychological identity or the ego. ” Jacobsen wrote in 2018, “ Bodily postures are closely related to the custom of ( tapas ), ascetic practices in the Vedic custom ” ; ascetic practices used by Vedic priests “ in their preparations for the performance of the forfeit “ may be precursors of yoga. “ The ecstatic rehearse of enigmatic longhaired muni in Rgveda 10.136 and the ascetic performance of the vratya-s in the Atharvaveda outside of or on the fringe of the Brahmanical ritual order, have probably contributed more to the ascetic practices of yoga. ” According to Bryant, practices recognizable as classical yoga first appear in the Upanishads ( composed during the former Vedic period ). Alexander Wynne agrees that formless, elementary meditation might have originated in the Upanishadic tradition. An early reference to meditation is made in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad ( c. 900 BCE ), one of the Principal Upanishads. The Chandogya Upanishad ( c. 800–700 BCE ) describes the five full of life energies ( prana ), and concepts of late yoga traditions ( such as blood vessels and an internal audio ) are besides described in this upanishad. The rehearse of pranayama ( focusing on the breath ) is mentioned in hymn 1.5.23 of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, [ 87 ] and pratyahara ( withdrawal of the senses ) is mentioned in hymn 8.15 of Chandogya Upanishad. [ 87 ] [ note 9 ] The Jaiminiya Upanishad Brahmana ( probably before the 6th c. BCE ) teaches hint control and repeat of a mantra. The 6th-c. BCE Taittiriya Upanishad defines yoga as the command of soundbox and senses. According to Flood, “ [ T ] he actual term yoga first appears in the Katha Upanishad, dated to the fifth [ 91 ] to first centuries BCE .

moment urbanization ( 500–200 BCE )

systematic yoga concepts begin to emerge in text dating to c. 500–200 BCE, such as the early Buddhist text, the center Upanishads, and the Mahabharata ‘s Bhagavad Gita and Shanti Parva. [ note 10 ]

Buddhism and the śramaṇa movement

Old stone carving of the Buddha with his servants and horse Bas-relief in Borobudur of the Buddha becoming a meandering anchorite alternatively of a warrior According to Geoffrey Samuel, the “ best testify to date ” suggests that yogistic practices “ developed in the lapp ascetic circles as the early śramaṇa movements ( Buddhists, Jainas and Ajivikas ), probably in around the one-sixth and fifth centuries BCE. ” This occurred during India ‘s second urbanization period. According to Mallinson and Singleton, these traditions were the first to use mind-body techniques ( known as Dhyāna and tapas ) but belated described as yoga, to strive for liberation from the round of reincarnation. Werner writes, “ The Buddha was the collapse of his [ Yoga ] system, tied though, true, he made habit of some of the experiences he had previously gained under assorted Yoga teachers of his clock. ” He notes :

But it is alone with Buddhism itself as expounded in the Pali Canon that we can speak about a taxonomic and comprehensive examination or tied integral school of Yoga drill, which is thus the first and oldest to have been preserved for us in its entirety .

early on Buddhist text report yogistic and brooding practices, some of which the Buddha borrowed from the śramaṇa tradition. [ 99 ] [ 100 ] The Pāli Canon contains three passages in which the Buddha describes pressing the tongue against the palate to control hunger or the mind, depending on the passage. [ 101 ] There is no note of the spit inserted into the nasopharynx, as in khecarī mudrā. The Buddha used a model in which coerce is put on the perineum with the heel, alike to modern postures used to evoke Kundalini. [ 102 ] Suttas which discuss yogistic practice include the Satipatthana Sutta ( the four foundations of mindfulness sutta ) and the Anapanasati Sutta ( the mindfulness of breathing sutta ). The chronology of these yoga-related early Buddhist text, like the ancient Hindu text, is indecipherable. early buddhist sources such as the Majjhima Nikāya citation meditation ; the Aṅguttara Nikāya describes jhāyins ( meditators ) who resemble early Hindu descriptions of muni, the Kesin and meditating ascetics, [ 105 ] but the meditation practices are not called “ yoga ” in these texts. The earliest know discussions of yoga in Buddhist literature, as sympathize in a modern context, are from the late Buddhist Yogācāra and Theravada schools. Jain meditation is a yoga arrangement which predated the Buddhist school. Since jain sources are later than Buddhist ones, however, it is unmanageable to distinguish between the early Jain school and elements derived from early schools. Most of the other contemporaneous yoga systems alluded to in the Upanishads and some Buddhist texts have been lost. [ 108 ] [ 109 ] [ note 11 ]


The Upanishads, composed in the belated Vedic time period, contain the first base references to practices recognizable as classical music yoga. The first known appearance of the son “ yoga ” in the modern feel is in the Katha Upanishad ( probably composed between the fifth and third centuries BCE ), [ 14 ] [ 15 ] where it is defined as steadily control of the senses which – with cessation of mental activity – leads to a supreme submit. [ note 12 ] The Katha Upanishad integrates the monism of the early Upanishads with concepts of samkhya and yoga. It defines levels of universe by their proximity to one ‘s inmost being. yoga is viewed as a process of interiorization, or rise of awareness. The upanishad is the earliest literary work which highlights the fundamentals of yoga. According to White ,

The earliest extant taxonomic report of yoga and a bridge from the earlier vedic uses of the term is found in the Hindu Katha Upanisad ( Ku ), a scripture dating from about the third gear hundred BCE … [ I ] metric ton describes the hierarchy of mind-body constituents—the senses, heed, mind, etc.—that comprise the foundational categories of Sāmkhya philosophy, whose metaphysical arrangement grounds the yoga of the Yogasutras, Bhagavad Gita, and other text and schools ( Ku3.10–11 ; 6.7–8 ) .

The hymn in book two of the Shvetashvatara Upanishad ( another late-first-millennium BCE text ) describe a operation in which the body is upright, the breath is restrained and the mind is meditatively concentrate, preferably in a cave or a identify that is bare and repose. [ 115 ] The Maitrayaniya Upanishad, probably composed late than the Katha and Shvetashvatara Upanishads but before the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, mentions a sixfold yoga method : hint control, introspective withdrawal of the senses, meditation ( dhyana ), mental concentration, logic and argue, and apparitional union. [ 117 ] In addition to discussions in the Principal Upanishads, the twenty Yoga Upanishads and related texts ( such as Yoga Vasistha, composed between the one-sixth and 14th centuries CE ) discourse yoga methods. [ 10 ]

Macedonian textbook

Alexander the Great reached India in the fourth century BCE. In addition to his army, he brought greek academics who wrote memoirs about its geography, people, and customs. One of Alexander ‘s companions was Onesicritus ( quoted in Book 15, Sections 63–65 by Strabo in his Geography ), who describes berra. [ 118 ] Onesicritus says that the berra were aloof and adopted “ unlike postures – standing or sitting or lying naked – and inactive ”. [ 119 ] Onesicritus besides mentions attempts by his colleague, Calanus, to meet them. initially denied an audience, he was late invited because he was sent by a “ king curious of wisdom of solomon and doctrine ”. [ 119 ] Onesicritus and Calanus learn that the berra consider life ‘s best doctrines to “ rid the liveliness of not lone pain, but besides pleasure ”, that “ man trains the body for labor in order that his opinions may be strengthened ”, that “ there is no pity in life on economical do ”, and that “ the best home to inhabit is one with bare equipment or kit ”. [ 118 ] [ 119 ] According to Charles Rockwell Lanman, these principles are significant in the history of yoga ‘s spiritual side and may reflect the roots of “ undisturbed calmness ” and “ mindfulness through balance ” in the former works of Patanjali and Buddhaghosa. [ 118 ]

Mahabharata and Bhagavad Gita

Nirodhayoga ( yoga of cessation ), an early form of yoga, is described in the Mokshadharma section of the 12th chapter ( Shanti Parva ) of the third-century BCE Mahabharata. Nirodhayoga emphasizes progressive withdrawal from empiric awareness, including thoughts and sensations, until purusha ( self ) is realized. Terms such as vichara ( insidious mirror image ) and viveka ( discrimination ) like to Patanjali ‘s terminology are used, but not described. Although the Mahabharata contains no uniform yogistic finish, the separation of self from count and perception of Brahman everywhere are described as goals of yoga. Samkhya and yoga are conflated, and some verses describe them as identical. Mokshadharma besides describes an early drill of elemental meditation. The Mahabharata defines the purpose of yoga as uniting the individual ātman with the universal joint Brahman pervading all things .
The Bhagavad Gita ( Song of the Lord ), character of the Mahabharata, contains extensive teachings about yoga. According to Mallinson and Singleton, the Gita “ seeks to appropriate yoga from the renunciate milieu in which it originated, teaching that it is compatible with worldly activity carried out according to one ‘s caste and liveliness stagecoach ; it is entirely the fruits of one ‘s actions that are to be renounced. ” In accession to a chapter ( chapter six ) dedicated to traditional yoga practice ( including meditation ), it introduces three meaning types of yoga :
The Gita consists of 18 chapters and 700 shlokas ( verses ) ; [ 129 ] each chapter is named for a unlike kind of yoga. [ 129 ] [ 131 ] Some scholars divide the Gita into three sections ; the first gear six chapters ( 280 shlokas ) deal with karma yoga, the middle six ( 209 shlokas ) with bhakti yoga, and the concluding six ( 211 shlokas with jnana yoga. however, elements of all three are found throughout the work. [ 129 ]

philosophical sutras

yoga is discussed in the foundational sutra of Hindu philosophy. The Vaiśeṣika Sūtra of the Vaisheshika school of Hinduism, composed between the sixth and second centuries BCE, discusses yoga. [ eminence 13 ] According to Johannes Bronkhorst, the Vaiśeṣika Sūtra describes yoga as “ a express where the take care resides only in the Self and therefore not in the senses ”. [ 132 ] This is equivalent to pratyahara ( withdrawal of the senses ). The sutra asserts that yoga leads to an absence of sukha ( happiness ) and dukkha ( suffering ), describing brooding steps in the journey towards spiritual liberation. [ 132 ] The Brahma Sutras, the initiation text of the Vedanta school of Hinduism, besides discusses yoga. [ 133 ] Estimated as completed in its surviving form between 450 BCE and 200 CE, [ 134 ] [ 135 ] its sutra insist that yoga is a think of to attain “ nuance of body ”. [ 133 ] The Nyaya Sutras —the foundation text of the Nyaya school, estimated as composed between the one-sixth hundred BCE and the secondcentury CE [ 136 ] [ 137 ] —discusses yoga in sutra 4.2.38–50. It includes a discussion of yogistic ethics, dhyana ( meditation ) and samadhi, noting that argue and philosophy are besides forms of yoga. [ 138 ] [ 139 ] [ 140 ]

classical music era ( 200 BCE – 500 CE )

The Indic traditions of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism were taking condition during the time period between the Mauryan and the Gupta eras ( c. 200 BCE – 500 CE ), and systems of yoga began to emerge ; a number of text from these traditions discussed and compiled yoga methods and practices. Key works of the earned run average include the Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali, the Yoga-Yājñavalkya, the Yogācārabhūmi-Śāstra, and the Visuddhimagga.

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

Statue of Patanjali as half man, half snake traditional Hindu depicting of Patanjali as an avatar of the divine snake Shesha One of the best-known early expressions of Brahminical yoga think is the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali ( early centuries CE, [ note 1 ] the original name of which may have been the Pātañjalayogaśāstra-sāṃkhya-pravacana ( c. 325–425 CE ) ; some scholars believe that it included the sutras and a comment. As the name suggests, the metaphysical basis of the text is samkhya ; the school is mentioned in Kauṭilya ‘s Arthashastra as one of the three categories of anviksikis ( philosophies ), with yoga and Cārvāka. [ 142 ] [ 143 ] Yoga and samkhya have some differences ; yoga accepted the concept of a personal idol, and Samkhya was a rational number, non-theistic system of Hindu philosophy. [ 144 ] Patanjali ‘s system is sometimes called “ Seshvara Samkhya ”, distinguishing it from Kapila ‘s Nirivara Samkhya. The parallels between yoga and samkhya were so near that Max Müller says, “ The two philosophies were in popular parlance distinguished from each other as Samkhya with and Samkhya without a Lord. ” Karel Werner wrote that the systematization of yoga which began in the in-between and early Yoga Upanishads culminated in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. [ note 14 ]

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
Pada (Chapter) English meaning Sutras
Samadhi Pada On being absorbed in spirit 51
Sadhana Pada On being immersed in spirit 55
Vibhuti Pada On supernatural abilities and gifts 56
Kaivalya Pada On absolute freedom 34

The Yoga Sutras are besides influenced by the Sramana traditions of Buddhism and Jainism, and may be a promote Brahmanical undertake to adopt yoga from those traditions. Larson noted a number of parallels in ancient samkhya, yoga and Abhidharma Buddhism, peculiarly from the irregular hundred BCE to the first base century AD. Patanjali ‘s Yoga Sutras are a deduction of the three traditions. From Samkhya, they adopt the “ brooding taste ” ( adhyavasaya ) of prakrti and purusa ( dualism ), their metaphysical rationalism, and their three epistemic methods of obtaining cognition. Larson says that the Yoga Sutras pursue an interpolate state of awareness from Abhidharma Buddhism ‘s nirodhasamadhi ; unlike Buddhism ‘s “ no self or soul ”, however, yoga ( like Samkhya ) believes that each individual has a self. The one-third concept which the Yoga Sutras synthesize is the abstainer tradition of meditation and introspection. Patanjali ‘s Yoga Sutras are considered the beginning compilation of yoga philosophy. [ note 15 ] The verses of the Yoga Sutras are crisp. many former indian scholars studied them and published their commentaries, such as the Vyasa Bhashya ( c. 350–450 CE ). Patanjali defines the word “ yoga ” in his second sutra, and his crisp definition hinges on the meaning of three Sanskrit terms. I. K. Taimni translates it as “ Yoga is the inhibition ( nirodhaḥ ) of the modifications ( vṛtti ) of the mind ( citta ) ”. Swami Vivekananda translates the sutra as “ Yoga is restraining the mind-stuff ( Citta ) from taking diverse forms ( Vrittis ). ” Edwin Bryant writes that to Patanjali, “ Yoga basically consists of brooding practices culminating in attaining a state of consciousness free from all modes of active or digressive think, and of finally attaining a state where consciousness is unaware of any object external to itself, that is, is only aware of its own nature as awareness unmixed with any other object. ” [ 155 ] Baba Hari Dass writes that if yoga is understood as nirodha ( genial control condition ), its goal is “ the incompetent department of state of niruddha ( the perfection of that process ) ”. “ Yoga ( coupling ) implies duality ( as in connect of two things or principles ) ; the result of yoga is the nondual state … as the union of the lower self and higher Self. The nondual state is characterized by the absence of individuality ; it can be described as endless peace, pure sleep together, Self-realization, or liberation. ” Patanjali defined an eight-limbed yoga in Yoga Sutras 2.29 :

  1. Yama (The five abstentions): Ahimsa (Non-violence, non-harming other living beings),[159] Satya (truthfulness, non-falsehood),[160] Asteya (non-stealing),[161] Brahmacharya (celibacy, fidelity to one’s partner),[161] and Aparigraha (non-avarice, non-possessiveness).[160]
  2. Niyama (The five “observances”): Śauca (purity, clearness of mind, speech and body),[162] Santosha (contentment, acceptance of others and of one’s circumstances),[163] Tapas (persistent meditation, perseverance, austerity),[164] Svādhyāya (study of self, self-reflection, study of Vedas),[165] and Ishvara-Pranidhana (contemplation of God/Supreme Being/True Self).[163]
  3. Asana: Literally means “seat”, and in Patanjali’s Sutras refers to the seated position used for meditation.
  4. Pranayama (“Breath exercises”): Prāna, breath, “āyāma”, to “stretch, extend, restrain, stop”.
  5. Pratyahara (“Abstraction”): Withdrawal of the sense organs from external objects.
  6. Dharana (“Concentration”): Fixing the attention on a single object.
  7. Dhyana (“Meditation”): Intense contemplation of the nature of the object of meditation.
  8. Samadhi (“Liberation”): merging consciousness with the object of meditation.

In Hindu scholasticism since the twelfth century, yoga has been one of the six orthodox philosophical schools ( darsanas ) : traditions which accept the Vedas. [ note 16 ] [ note 17 ]

yoga and Vedanta

yoga and Vedanta are the two largest surviving schools of Hindu traditions. Although they share many principles, concepts, and the belief in Self, they differ in degree, style, and methods ; yoga accepts three means to obtain cognition, and Advaita Vedanta accepts. Yoga disputes Advaita Vedanta ‘s monism. [ 168 ] It believes that in the submit of moksha, each individual discovers the blissful, liberating sense of himself or herself as an autonomous identity ; Advaita Vedanta teaches that in the express of moksha, each individual discovers the blissful, liberating sense of himself or herself as contribution of oneness with everything, everyone and the Universal Self. They both hold that the free conscience is transcendent, emancipated and self-conscious. Advaita Vedanta besides encourages the use of Patanjali ‘s yoga practices and the Upanishads for those seeking the supreme good and ultimate exemption. [ 168 ]

yoga Yajnavalkya

संयोगो योग इत्युक्तो जीवात्मपरमात्मनोः॥
saṁyogo yoga ityukto jīvātma-paramātmanoḥ॥
Yoga is the union of the person self ( jivātma ) with the supreme self ( paramātma ) .

Yoga Yajnavalkya
The Yoga Yajnavalkya is a classical treatise on yoga, attributed to the Vedic sage Yajnavalkya, in the form of a negotiation between Yajnavalkya and the celebrated philosopher Gargi Vachaknavi. [ 170 ] The lineage of the 12-chapter text has been traced to the second hundred BCE and the fourthly century CE. [ 171 ] A number of yoga texts, such as the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, the Yoga Kundalini and the Yoga Tattva Upanishads, have borrowed from ( or frequently refer to ) the Yoga Yajnavalkya. [ 172 ] It discusses eight yoga asanas ( Swastika, Gomukha, Padma, Vira, Simha, Bhadra, Mukta and Mayura ), a number of breathing exercises for body ablutionary, and meditation .

Abhidharma and Yogachara

Old sculpture of the scholar Asanga [176]Asanga, a fourth-century scholar and co-founder of the Yogachara (“Yoga practice”) school of Mahayana Buddhism The Buddhist custom of Abhidharma spawned treatises which expanded teachings on Buddhist theory and yoga techniques which influenced Mahayana and Theravada Buddhism. At the acme of the Gupta menstruation ( fourth to fifth centuries CE ), a northern Mahayana drift known as Yogācāra began to be systematized with the writings of Buddhist scholars Asanga and Vasubandhu. Yogācāra Buddhism provided a taxonomic framework for practices which lead a bodhisattva towards awakening and full Buddhahood. [ 177 ] Its teachings are found in the encyclopedic Yogācārabhūmi-Śāstra ( Treatise for Yoga Practitioners ), which was besides translated into Tibetan and Chinese and influenced East Asian and Tibetan Buddhist traditions. [ 178 ] Mallinson and Singleton write that the study of Yogācāra Buddhism is substantive to understand yoga ‘s early on history, and its teachings influenced the Pātañjalayogaśāstra. The South India and Sri Lankan-based Theravada school besides developed manuals for yogistic and brooding train, primarily the Vimuttimagga and the Visuddhimagga .


According to Tattvarthasutra, a second-to-fifth century Jain text, yoga is the sum of all activities of mind, speech and consistency. [ 5 ] Umasvati calls yoga the generator of karma, [ 180 ] and essential to the path to dismissal. [ 180 ] In his Niyamasara, Kundakunda describes yoga bhakti —devotion to the way to liberation—as the highest form of devotion. Haribhadra and Hemacandra note the five major vows of ascetics and 12 minor vows of laity in yoga. According to Robert J. Zydenbos, Jainism is a organization of yogistic thinking which became a religion. The five yamas ( constraints ) of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are like to Jainism ‘s five major vows, indicating cross-fertilization between these traditions. [ notice 18 ] Hinduism ‘s determine on Jain yoga may be seen in Haribhadra ‘s Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya, which outlines an octuple yoga influenced by Patanjali ‘s octuple yoga .

Middle Ages ( 500–1500 CE )

A male yogiTwo female yoginis male and female berra in 17th- and 18th-century India The Middle Ages saw the growth of satellite yoga traditions. Hatha yoga emerged during this menstruation .

Bhakti drift

In chivalric Hinduism, the Bhakti movement advocated the concept of a personal idol or Supreme Personality. The drift, begun by the Alvars of South India during the 6th to 9th centuries, became influential throughout India by the 12th to 15th centuries. [ 186 ] Shaiva and Vaishnava bhakti traditions integrated aspects of the Yoga Sutras ( such as brooding exercises ) with devotion. The Bhagavata Purana elucidates a form of yoga known as viraha ( interval ) bhakti, which emphasizes concentration on Krishna .


Tantra is a range of esoteric traditions which had begun to arise in India by the fifth hundred CE. [ 189 ] [ note 19 ] Its use suggests that the news tantra in the Rigveda means “ proficiency ”. George Samuel wrote that tantra is a contested term, but may be considered a school whose practices appeared in nearly-complete shape in Buddhist and Hindu text by about the tenth century CE. Tantric yoga developed complex visualizations, which included meditation on the consistency as a microcosm of the universe. It included mantras, breath control condition, and soundbox manipulation ( including its nadis and chakras. Teachings about chakras and Kundalini became central to later forms of indian yoga. tantric concepts influenced Hindu, Bon, Buddhist, and Jain traditions. Elements of Tantric rituals were adopted by, and influenced, state functions in medieval Buddhist and Hindu kingdoms in East and Southeast Asia. By the turn of the inaugural millennium, hatha yoga emerged from tantra. [ 20 ]

Vajrayana and Tibetan Buddhism

Vajrayana is besides known as Tantric Buddhism and Tantrayāna. Its textbook began to be compiled during the seventh century CE, and Tibetan translations were completed the comply hundred. These tantra texts were the independent beginning of Buddhist cognition imported into Tibet, [ 195 ] and were late translated into Chinese and other asian languages. The Buddhist text Hevajra Tantra and caryāgiti introduced hierarchies of chakras. [ 196 ] Yoga is a significant commit in Tantric Buddhism. [ 197 ] [ 198 ] [ 199 ] Tantra yoga practices include postures and breathing exercises. The Nyingma school practices yantra yoga, a discipline which includes breath bring, meditation and other exercises. [ 200 ] Nyingma meditation is divided into stages, [ 201 ] such as Kriya Yoga, Upa yoga, Yoga yana, mahā yoga, Anu yoga and atiyoga. [ 202 ] The Sarma traditions besides include Kriya, Upa ( called “ Charya ” ), and yoga, with anuttara yoga replacing mahayoga and atiyoga. [ 203 ]

Zen Buddhism

Zen, whose name derives from the Sanskrit dhyāna via the chinese ch’an, [ note 20 ] is a imprint of Mahayana Buddhism in which yoga is an built-in separate. [ 205 ]

Medieval hatha yoga

Sculpture of a young yogi sitting in the lotus position [206] sculpt of Gorakshanath, an 11th-century yogi of the Nath custom and a advocate of hatha yoga The first references to hatha yoga are in eighth-century Buddhist works. [ 207 ] The earliest definition of hatha yoga is in the 11th-century Buddhist text Vimalaprabha. [ 208 ] Hatha yoga blends elements of Patanjali ‘s Yoga Sutras with pose and breathe exercises. It marks the development of asanas into the full-body postures in stream democratic use and, with its modern variations, is the dash soon associated with the word “ yoga ” .


yogistic groups became big in Punjab during the 15th and 16th centuries, when sikhism was beginning. Compositions by Guru Nanak ( the founder of Sikhism ) report dialogues he had with Jogis, a Hindu community which practiced yoga. Guru Nanak rejected the austerities, rites and rituals associated with hatha yoga, advocating sahaja yoga or nama yoga rather. [ 211 ] According to the Guru Granth Sahib ,

O Yogi, Nanak tells nothing but the truth. You must discipline your mind. The fan must meditate on the Word Divine. It is His deck which brings about the union. He understands, he besides sees. good deeds help one unify into Divination. [ 212 ]

Modern revival

Introduction in the West

Formal photograph of Swami Vivekananda, eyes downcast Swami Vivekananda in London in 1896 yoga and other aspects of indian philosophy came to the attention of the educate western public during the mid-19th hundred, and N. C. Paul published his Treatise on Yoga Philosophy in 1851. [ 213 ] Swami Vivekananda, the first Hindu teacher to advocate and disseminate elements of yoga to a western audience, toured Europe and the United States in the 1890s. [ 214 ] His reception built on the interest of intellectuals who included the New England Transcendentalists ; among them were Ralph Waldo Emerson ( 1803–1882 ), who drew on german Romanticism and philosophers and scholars such as Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel ( 1770–1831 ), the brothers August Wilhelm Schlegel ( 1767–1845 ) and Friedrich Schlegel ( 1772–1829 ), Max Mueller ( 1823–1900 ), and Arthur Schopenhauer ( 1788–1860 ). [ 216 ] Theosophists, including Helena Blavatsky, besides influenced the Western public ‘s opinion of yoga. [ 217 ] Esoteric views at the end of the nineteenth hundred encouraged the reception of Vedanta and yoga, with their symmetry between the religious and the physical. The reception of yoga and Vedanta entwined with the ( primarily neoplatonic ) currents of religious and philosophic reform and transformation during the 19th and early twentieth centuries. Mircea Eliade brought a new element to yoga, emphasizing tantric yoga in his Yoga: Immortality and Freedom. With the introduction of tantra traditions and philosophy, the invention of the “ transcendent ” attained by yogistic practice shifted from the mind to the body. [ 220 ]

Yoga as practice

yoga is a physical activeness consist of asana ( frequently connected by smooth transitions, sometimes accompanied by breathing exercises and normally ending with a period of liberalization or meditation. It is much known plainly as “ yoga ”, [ 221 ] despite older Hindu traditions ( some date to the Yoga Sutras ) in which asanas played fiddling or no contribution ; asanas were not central to any custom. [ 222 ] yoga as practice is function of a modern yoga renaissance, [ 223 ] a 20th-century blend of westerly gymnastics and haṭha yoga pioneered by Shri Yogendra and Swami Kuvalayananda. Before 1900, hatha yoga had few standing poses ; the Sun Salutation was pioneered by Bhawanrao Shrinivasrao Pant Pratinidhi, the Rajah of Aundh, during the 1920s. [ 225 ] many standing poses used in gymnastics were incorporated into yoga by Krishnamacharya in Mysore between the 1930s and the 1950s. several of his students founded schools of yoga. Pattabhi Jois created ashtanga vinyasa yoga, which led to Power Yoga ; [ 228 ] B. K. S. Iyengar created Iyengar Yoga and systematised asanas in his 1966 book, Light on Yoga ; Indra Devi taught yoga to Hollywood actors ; and Krishnamacharya ‘s son, T. K. V. Desikachar, founded the Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandalam in Chennai. [ 230 ] [ 232 ] other schools founded during the twentieth century include Bikram Choudhury ‘s Bikram Yoga and Swami Sivananda of Rishikesh ‘s Sivananda yoga. Modern yoga has spread around the global. [ 233 ] [ 234 ] A guru leads a large group in outdoor meditation International Day of Yoga in New Delhi, 2016 The issue of asanas used in yoga has increased from 84 in 1830 ( as illustrated in Joga Pradipika ) to about 200 in Light on Yoga and over 900 performed by Dharma Mittra by 1984. The goal of haṭha yoga ( apparitional liberation through energy ) was largely replaced by the goals of seaworthiness and rest, and many of its more esoteric components were reduced or removed. The condition “ hatha yoga ” besides refers to gentle yoga, frequently for women. yoga has developed into a global, multi-billion-dollar clientele involving classes, teacher documentation, dress, books, videos, equipment, and holidays. [ 237 ] The ancient, cross-legged lotus side and Siddhasana are widely-recognised symbols of yoga. The United Nations General Assembly established 21 June as the International Day of Yoga, [ 239 ] [ 240 ] [ 241 ] and it has been celebrated per annum around the world since 2015. [ 242 ] [ 243 ] On 1 December 2016, yoga was listed by UNESCO as an intangible cultural inheritance. [ 244 ] The impression of postural yoga on physical and mental health has been a subject of study, with tell that regular yoga commit is beneficial for abject back trouble and stress. [ 245 ] [ 246 ] In 2017, a Cochrane review found that yoga interventions designed for chronic low back pain increased serve at the six calendar month sign, and modestly decreased pain after 3–4 months. The decrease in annoyance was found to be like to other exercise programs designed for low-back pain, but the decrease is not large adequate to be deemed clinically significant [ 247 ] Theories of the mechanism underlying these changes include the increase in forte and tractability, physical and mental rest and increased body awareness .


yoga is practised with a variety of methods by all indian religions. In Hinduism, practices include jnana yoga, bhakti yoga, karma yoga, kundalini yoga, and hatha yoga .

Jain yoga

yoga has been a central practice in Jainism. Jain spiritualty is based on a stern code of passive resistance, or ahimsa ( which includes vegetarianism ), almsgiving ( dāna ), religion in the three jewels, austerities ( tapas ) such as fast, and yoga. [ 248 ] Jain yoga aims at the liberation and refining of the self from the forces of karma, which binds the self to the cycle of reincarnation. Like yoga and Sankhya, Jainism believes in a number of person selves bound by their individual karma. [ 250 ] entirely through the decrease of karmic influences and the exhaustion of collect karma can one become purify and released. early Jain yoga seems to have been divided into several types, including meditation, abandonment of the torso ( kāyotsarga ), contemplation, and mirror image ( bhāvanā ). [ 252 ]

Buddhist yoga

Buddhist yoga encompasses a kind of methods which aim to develop the 37 aids to awakening. Its ultimate finish is bodhi ( awakening ) or nirvana ( cessation ), traditionally seen as the permanent end of suffering ( dukkha ) and reincarnation. [ note 21 ] Buddhist text habit a count of terms for religious practice in addition to yoga, such as bhāvanā ( “ exploitation ” ) [ note 22 ] and jhāna/dhyāna. [ notice 23 ] In early Buddhism, yoga practices included :
These meditations were seen as supported by the other elements of the Noble Eightfold Path, such as ethics, right effort, sense restraint and right scene. [ 253 ] Two mental qualities are said to be essential for yoga commit in Buddhism : samatha ( composure, stability ) and vipassanā ( penetration, clear seeing ). [254] Samatha is a stable, relax judgment, associated with samadhi ( genial union, focus ) and dhyana ( a state of brooding preoccupation ). Vipassanā is penetration or penetrative understanding into the true nature of phenomenon, besides defined as “ seeing things as they truly are ” ( yathābhūtaṃ darśanam ). A unique sport of classical Buddhism is its understanding of all phenomena ( dhammas ) as being empty of a self. [ 255 ] [ 256 ] late developments in Buddhist traditions led to innovations in yoga practice. The conservative Theravada school developed new ideas on meditation and yoga in its late works, the most influential of which is the Visuddhimagga. Mahayana meditation teachings may be seen in the Yogācārabhūmi-Śāstra, compiled c. fourth hundred. Mahayana besides developed and adopted yoga methods such as the use of mantras and dharani, pure land practices aiming at rebirth in a saturated nation or buddhafield, and visual image. chinese Buddhism developed the Chan practice of Koan introspection and Hua Tou. Tantric Buddhism developed and adopted tantric methods which are the footing of the Tibetan Buddhist yoga systems, including deity yoga, guru yoga, the six yoga of Naropa, Kalacakra, Mahamudra and Dzogchen .

classical music yoga

What is frequently referred to as classical yoga, ashtanga yoga, or rāja yoga is chiefly the yoga outlined in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. The origins of classical yoga are unclear, although early discussions of the term appear in the Upanishads. Rāja yoga ( yoga of kings ) originally denoted the ultimate goal of yoga ; samadhi, but was popularised by Vivekananda as a coarse name for ashtanga yoga, [ note 24 ] the eight limbs reach samadhi as described in the Yoga Sutras. Yoga philosophy came to be regarded as a distinct orthodox school ( darsanas ) of Hinduism in the moment one-half of the first millennium CE. [ network 1 ] classical yoga incorporates epistemology, metaphysics, ethical practices, systematic exercises and self-development for torso, mind and spirit. [ 155 ] Its epistemology ( pramana ) and metaphysics are similar to the Sāṅkhya school. The Classical yoga ‘s metaphysics, like Sāṅkhya ‘s, chiefly posits two distinct realities : prakriti ( nature, the ageless and active unconscious beginning of the material world composed of three Gunas ) and puruṣa ( awareness ), the plural consciousnesses which are the healthy principles of the universe. [ 261 ] Moksha ( liberation ) results from the isolation ( kaivalya) of puruṣa from prakirti, and is achieved through meditation, stilling one ‘s thought waves ( citta vritti ) and resting in arrant awareness of puruṣa. [ 261 ] Unlike Sāṅkhya, which takes a non-theistic approach, [ 144 ] the yoga school of Hinduism accepts a “ personal, however basically inactive, deity ” or “ personal idol ” ( Ishvara ). [ 263 ]

In Advaita Vedanta

Vedanta is a change custom, with a phone number of sub-schools and philosophical views. It focuses on the study of the Upanishads and the Brahma Sutras ( one of its early text ), about gaining religious cognition of Brahman : the unchanging, absolute world. [ 265 ] One of the earliest and most influential sub-traditions of Vedanta is Advaita Vedanta, which posits non-dualistic monism. It emphasizes jñāna yoga ( yoga of cognition ), which aims at realizing the identity of one ‘s atman ( individual awareness ) with Brahman ( the Absolute consciousness ). [ 266 ] [ 267 ] The most influential thinker of this school is Adi Shankara ( eighth century ), who wrote commentaries and early works on jñāna yoga. In Advaita Vedanta, jñāna is attained from scripture, one ‘s guru, and through a serve of listening to ( and meditating on ) teachings. [ 268 ] Qualities such as discrimination, repudiation, tranquillity, temperance, dispassion, survival, faith, care, and a longing for cognition and exemption are besides desirable. [ 269 ] Yoga in Advaita is a “ brooding practice of withdrawal from the particular and identification with the universal, leading to contemplation of oneself as the most universal joint, namely, Consciousness ”. [ 270 ] Yoga Vasistha is an influential Advaita text which uses short stories and anecdotes to illustrate its ideas. Teaching seven stages of yoga practice, it was a major reference for medieval Advaita Vedanta yoga scholars and one of the most popular text on Hindu yoga before the twelfth hundred. Another text which teaches yoga from an Advaita sharpen of view is the Yoga Yajnavalkya. [ 273 ]

Tantric yoga

According to Samuel, Tantra is a contested concept. Tantra yoga may be described as practices in 9th to tenth hundred Buddhist and Hindu ( Saiva, Shakti ) text which included yogistic practices with elaborate deity visualizations using geometric arrays and drawings ( mandala ), male and ( peculiarly ) female deities, life-stage-related rituals, the use of chakras and mantras, and intimate techniques aimed at aiding one ‘s health, longevity and dismissal. [ 274 ]

Hatha yoga

Painting of a man doing a shoulder stand [275]Viparītakaraṇī, a posture used as an asana and a mudra Hatha yoga focuses on physical and genial strength-building exercises and postures described chiefly in three Hindu text : [ 276 ] [ 277 ] [ 278 ] Some scholars include Gorakshanath ‘s 11th-century Goraksha Samhita on the list, [ 276 ] since Gorakshanath is considered responsible for popularizing contemporary hatha yoga. [ 280 ] [ 281 ] [ 282 ] Vajrayana Buddhism, founded by the indian Mahasiddhas, [ 283 ] has a series of asanas and pranayamas ( such as tummo ) [ 197 ] which resemble hatha yoga .

Laya and kundalini yoga

Laya and kundalini yoga, close associated with hatha yoga, are often presented as autonomous approaches. According to Georg Feuerstein, laya yoga ( yoga of dissolving or unify ) “ makes brooding preoccupation ( laya ) its focus. The laya-yogin seek to transcend all memory traces and sensory experiences by dissolving the microcosm, the judgment, in the nonnatural self-consciousness. ” [ 284 ] Laya yoga has a number of techniques which include listening to the “ inner audio ” ( nada ), mudras such as Khechari and Shambhavi mudra, and awakening kundalini ( torso energy ). [ 285 ] Kundalini yoga aims to awaken bodily and cosmic energy with breath and torso techniques, uniting them with universal joint awareness. [ 286 ] A common education method acting awakens kundalini in the lowest chakra and guides it through the central channel to unite with the absolute awareness in the highest chakra, at the top of the head. [ 287 ]

Reception by other religions


Some Christians integrate physical aspects of yoga, stripped from the spiritual roots of Hinduism, and other aspects of Eastern spiritualty with prayer, meditation and Jesus-centric affirmations. [ 288 ] [ 289 ] The drill besides includes renaming poses in English ( quite than using the original Sanskrit terms ), and abandoning involved Hindu mantras ampere well as the philosophy of Yoga ; Yoga is associated and reframed into Christianity. [ 289 ] This has drawn charges of cultural annexation from versatile Hindu groups ; [ 289 ] [ 290 ] scholars remain doubting. [ 291 ] Previously, the Roman Catholic Church, and some early christian organizations have expressed concerns and disapproval with respect to some eastern and New Age practices that include yoga and meditation. [ 292 ] [ 293 ] [ 294 ] In 1989 and 2003, the Vatican issued two documents : Aspects of Christian meditation and “ A christian reflection on the New Age, ” that were by and large critical of eastern and New Age practices. The 2003 document was published as a 90-page handbook detailing the Vatican ‘s side. [ 295 ] The Vatican warned that concentration on the physical aspects of meditation “ can degenerate into a cult of the body ” and that equating bodily states with mysticism “ could besides lead to psychic disturbance and, at times, to moral deviations. ” such has been compared to the early days of Christianity, when the church service opposed the gnostics ‘ belief that redemption came not through faith but through mystic inner cognition. [ 288 ] The letter besides says, “ one can see if and how [ prayer ] might be enriched by meditation methods developed in other religions and cultures ” [ 296 ] but maintains the mind that “ there must be some fit between the nature of [ other approaches to ] entreaty and Christian beliefs about ultimate world. ” [ 288 ] Some [ which? ] fundamentalist Christian organizations consider yoga to be uncongenial with their religious setting, considering it a separate of the New Age apparent motion discrepant with Christianity. [ 297 ]


Early-11th-century Persian scholar Al-Biruni visited India, lived with Hindus for 16 years, and ( with their aid ) translated several Sanskrit works into Arabic and Persian ; one of these was Patanjali ‘s Yoga Sutras. [ 298 ] Although Al-Biruni ‘s translation preserved many core themes of Patañjali ‘s yoga philosophy, some sutras and commentaries were restated for consistency with monotheistic Islamic theology. [ 298 ] [ 300 ] Al-Biruni ‘s interpretation of the Yoga Sutras reached Persia and the arabian Peninsula by about 1050. During the sixteenth hundred, the hatha yoga text Amritakunda was translated into Arabic and Persian. [ 301 ] Yoga was, however, not accepted by mainstream Sunni and Shia Islam. Minority Islamic sects such as the mystic Sufi motion, particularly in South Asia, adopted indian yoga postures and hint control. [ 302 ] [ 303 ] Muhammad Ghawth, a 16th-century Shattari Sufi and interpreter of yoga textbook, was criticized for his sake in yoga and persecuted for his Sufi belief. [ 304 ] Malaysia ‘s top Islamic body imposed a legally-enforceable 2008 fatwa prohibiting Muslims from practicing yoga, saying that it had elements of Hinduism and its practice was haram as profanation. [ 305 ] [ 306 ] Malaysian Muslims who had been practicing yoga for years called the decision “ contemptuous. ” [ 307 ] Sisters in Islam, a malaysian women’s-rights group, expressed disappointment and said that yoga was a class of practice. [ 308 ] Malaysia ‘s prime minister clarified that yoga as exercise is permissible, but the chant of religious mantras is not. [ 309 ] The indonesian Ulema Council ( MUI ) imposed a 2009 fatwa banning yoga because it contains hindu elements. [ 310 ] These fatwas have been criticized by Darul Uloom Deoband, a Deobandi Islamic seminary in India. [ 311 ] Similar fatwa banning yoga for its link to Hinduism were imposed by Grand Mufti Ali Gomaa in Egypt in 2004, and by Islamic clerics in Singapore early. [ 312 ] [ 313 ] According to Iran ‘s yoga association, the country had about 200 yoga centres in May 2014. one-fourth were in the das kapital, Tehran, where groups could be seen practising in parks ; conservatives were opposed. [ 314 ] In May 2009, turkish Directorate of Religious Affairs head Ali Bardakoğlu discounted personal-development techniques such as reiki and yoga as commercial ventures which could lead to extremism. According to Bardakoğlu, reiki and yoga could be a form of proselytizing at the expense of Islam. [ 315 ] Nouf Marwaai brought yoga to Saudi Arabia in 2017, contributing to making it legal and recognized despite being allegedly threatened by her community who asserts yoga as “ un-Islamic ”. [ 316 ]

See besides




Printed sources

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