Yoga The Science YOGA Yogi – A yoga practitioner practicing yoga in caves in the Himalayas; i.e. far away from common life. But Yoga can be practiced by everyone. Two Extreme Views: Yoga is highly difficult & complex Yoga is too Simple YOGA IS TO BE STUDIED IN ITS TRUE FORM
Yoga The Science • Yoga is a highway for happiness & prosperity. • Material pleasures cannot give true satisfaction or joy. • There is no limit that our expectations & desires can fulfill. • Continue doing your duties without expectations. • Such impartial attitude towards the duties of life is YOGA
Yoga The Science Yoga means to JOIN To join Atman with Paramatman PARAMATMAN The controller of the universal energy ATMAN The controller of the self If Paramatman is the ocean, Atman is a drop of its water, kept separate in a container (Body) Atman is confined to the body mind complex, and has its own separate identity When Atman merges with Paramatman, it looses its own identity. This is the aim of Yoga!
Yoga The Science Tools Available • Body (Perfectly Healthy) • Mind (Totally Purified) • Intellect (Properly Trained) Present Condition • Body (Not Healthy) • Mind (Not Purified) • Intellect (Not Trained) Yogic Practices help in this Evolution
Yoga The Science Yogic practice can be used for: • Correcting the disorders of the body • Keeping the body in a healthy condition • Improving mental capacities • Developing the intellect
Yoga The Science Patanjali Yoga Ashtanga Yoga (Eight Limb Yoga) • Yama : Social Discipline • Niyama : Self Discipline • Asana : Posture • Pranayama : Breath control • Pratyahara : Withdrawal of sense organs • Dharana : Concentration of Mind • Dhyana : Meditation • Samadhi: Union with God
Yoga The Science Yoga is a science of personality development • Physical Condition • Mental Control • Emotional Balance • Intellectual Development
Yama – Social Discipline Yama • Ahimsa – Non Violence • Satya – Truthfulness • Asteya – Non Stealing • Brahmacharya – Sexual Control • Aparigraha – Non Possessiveness
Yama – Social Discipline Yama • The first component of Ashtanga Yoga • Rules for Social Discipline (Guidelines on how to behave in society) • These are universal laws respected everywhere (Laws of Nature) • These are natural instincts • These are easy to follow
Yama – Social Discipline Ahimsa – Non Violence * Means of behaviour towards all living creatures * Absence of harmful intentions or thoughts * To be followed on three levels i) Physical ii) Verbal iii) Mental * Control your actions, words & mind * Generate love & compassion towards all living creatures
Yama – Social Discipline Satya – Truthfulness • Fact is fact There is no other way than to accept it • We try to hide the facts • We do not accept the facts • One lie requires many more lies to support it • Untruthfulness in all its various forms creates many types of unnecessary complications in life • Truthfulness is absolutely necessary for the unfoldment of reality
Yama – Social Discipline Asetya – Non Stealing • Stealing means to take anything without the permission of its owner • Yoga sadhaka should not take anything, which does not belong to them. • They should not even take intangible or highly prized things, such as credits for something they have not done.
Yama – Social Discipline Brahmacharya – Sexual Control • In its real sense means the abstinence from sexual indulgence to obtain a higher yogic level, no compromise of this discipline is possible • One cannot get real bliss realised by the transcendent knowledge of higher yogic life, whilst having sexual pleasures at the same time • One may not be required to give up sexual activities straightaway, but must completely abstain before commencing serious practice of Yoga on a higher level.
Yama – Social Discipline Brahmacharya – Sexual Control (cont.) • A real yogi should be prepared to completely give up, not only physical indulgence in sexual activities, but also thoughts & emotions concerned with it • In a wider sense Brahmacharya means a freedom from cravings of all sensual enjoyments • The attitude of the mind is responsible for these cravings
Yama – Social Discipline Aparigraha – Non Possessiveness • The tendency to accumulate worldly goods is considered a basic instinct in human life • Necessities – comforts – luxuries (These are subjective & limitless) • One needs to satisfy its childish vanity & desires, to appear superior to others • One must spend time & energy in accumulating these things, which are not really needed.
Yama – Social Discipline Aparigraha – Non Possessiveness (cont.) • Maintaining & guarding the accumulated items • Constant fear of loosing them • Feeling of pain if actually lost • Feeling of regret to leave them behind, when bidding goodbye to this world. • We spend our valuable time & resources to accumulate, yet they generate a constant source of disturbance to us. • Hence minimise your needs
Yama – Social Discipline • Yamas are to be followed fully irrespective of place, time, caste without exception • It is necessary to follow the Yamas 100% to attain a level of higher yogic practice • When you undertake yoga practice, try to follow Yamas as much as you can • If you follow Yama & Niyama you will be able to perform Asana & Pranayama better • If you practice Asana & Pranayama better you will automatically start following Yama & Niyama • Following Yama & Niyama will help to attain the goal of yoga: “CHITTA VRITTI NIRODHAHA”
Niyama – Self Discipline Niyama Shoucha – Cleanliness, Purity Santosha – Contentment Tapa – Austerity Swadhyaya – Self Study Ishwara Pranidhana – Surrender to God
Niyama – Self Discipline • Second component (Anga) of Ashtanga Yoga • Rules for self discipline • Yamas are moral & prohibitive, whereas Niyamas are disciplined & constructive • Yamas provide ethical foundation & Niyamas provide physical & mental foundation for furthering studies of Yoga • Yamas can be practiced only within a society, but Niyamas can be practiced anywhere irrespective of society • Yamas are reactive & Niyamas are active
Niyama – Self Discipline Shoucha – Cleanliness, Purity • Purity of body, mind & intellect • These instruments become impure when things are added to them. Shoucha helps to eliminate these additions. • Hatha Yoga prescribes many practices for the purification of the internal body • The cleansing practices are divided into six major categories: Shatkarmas 1) Dhouti 2) Basti 3) Neti 4) Tratak 5) Nouli 6) Kapalbhati
Niyama – Self Discipline Shatkarmas • Dhouti – Cleaning of the digestive tract • Basti – Cleaning of the rectum • Neti – Cleaning of the Nasal passage • Tratak – Cleaning of the eyes • Nouli – Improving the digestion • Kapalbhati – Cleaning of the lungs & For purification of the mind – Mantra Sadhana
Niyama – Self Discipline Santosha – Contentment • This is a mental attitude that keeps the mind in a condition of equilibrium • Circumstances impact on the mind & cause it to react. These reactions disturb the equilibrium of the mind & in turn disrupt the physical condition of the body • To avoid these disturbances train your mind to react with contentment • Always say “Very nice Very nice!” • A continual practice of Ashtanga Yoga along with training the mind through Mantra Sadhana, is necessary to develop this attitude
Niyama – Self Discipline Tapa – Austerity, Self Discipline • This includes various practices, the object of which is to purify the sadhakas body mind complex for further study of Yoga • Practices include fasting & observing various vows. These are performed to control the functions of the body & mind • A systematic practice begins with simple exercises, to exert control of willpower & in progression more difficult practices are performed. This practice loosens the association of the consciousness with the body mind complex
Niyama – Self Discipline Swadhyaya – Self Study • Study is the process of acquiring knowledge, both theoretical & practical • The explanation given by Patanjali of study is as follows: Deerghakaal – for long period Nairantarya – continued, uninterrupted Satakarasevito – with full unconditional faith • The style of study will depend on the individual self
Niyama – Self Discipline Ishwarpranidhana – Total surrender to God • The progressive practice of Ishwarpranidhana will lead to samadhi, the state of union • Ishwarpranidhana is a process of transformation from human to God • Ishwarpranidhana is the concept of loosing the identity of the self & merging it with that of Ishwara the God • This effort may take many forms according to the temperaments & the previous Sanskaras of the sadhaka • Ishwarpranidhana is explained in detail in Bhakti Yoga