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What really are the eight limbs of yoga?

May 18, 2020

Yoga is not only about asanas, the word ‘yoga’ means to unite. Patanjali, a respected scholar in the yogic tradition, described in the Yoga sutras the eight limbs of yoga, called ashtanga, as the ideal way of living your life with meaning and purpose. Discipline, ethics, and morals help in seeing the spiritual side of life and leading a healthy lifestyle. The 8 limbs of ashtanga yoga are:-
 

1. Yamas

The five yamas are Ahimsa (nonviolence), Satya (truthfulness), Asteya (non-stealing), Brahmacharya (continence), and Aparigraha (non-covetousness). This limb out of the eight limbs of yoga focusses on practices that are mainly about the world around us and our relationship with it.


2. Niyamas

These practices are focussed upon self-discipline and outlook toward society. They are Saucha (purification), Santosa (contentment), Tapas (discipline), Svadhyaya (self-study), and Isvarapranidaha (surrender to a higher power).


See Also The Seven Chakras – Vortex of Energy

3. Asanas

Out of all the 8 limbs of Ashtanga yoga, this is the most known one, but it is not just about impressive posture. Asanas mean seat one takes to practice meditation. Our bodies are temples of spiritual growth.


4. Pranayama

The 8 limbs of yoga are incomplete without Pranayama, or life force extension. This limb is focussed of controlled and uncontrolled patterns of breathing. Every technique of breathing changes our state of being.


5. Pratyahara

Pratyahara is about the withdrawal of the senses. Keeping your mind off any distractions is the first step towards meditation. We are no longer bothered by the surroundings and only focus on the mind.


See Also The Seven Chakras – Vortex of Energy

6. Dharana

Focussed concentration comes under this limb out of the 8 limbs of yoga. All you need to do is concentrate your mind on one point, it could be anything like a mantra, a flame, a picture of a deity, etc.


7. Dhyana

This is the stage of focussed meditation which is lead by Pratyahara and Dharana. This is the stage of peace and complete bliss.


8. Samadhi

The last of the eight limbs of yoga is Samadhi or enlightenment. This is the final stage in the journey of Yoga sutras by Patanjali. This is the state of pure bliss in which the meditator sees everything as one.

 

Let Amayaan help you connect with meditation retreats India to relax your mind, body, and soul.

See Also The Seven Chakras – Vortex of Energy

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