Yoga Beyond Asana

Exploring the Yoga Sutras: Sutra 3.4

Yoga sutra 3.4 states: trayam ekatra samyama: The three [dharana, dhyana, and samadhi] as one is called samyama. The last three limbs of the eight limbs of yoga are considered those limbs that happen naturally, whereas the first five limbs are actively practiced....

read more

Exploring the Yoga Sutras: Sutra 2.46

Yoga sutra 2.46 states, sthira sukham asanam: The posture for yoga meditation should be steady, stable, and comfortable. You may have heard this yoga sutra in class—at least in its English translation. The yoga postures are to be done with steadiness and ease. Without...

read more

The Vedic World View

"It is quite possible that India is the real world, and that the white man lives in a madhouse of abstractions." Carl Jung (after a visit to India in 1938) As our study and practice of the Yogic sciences and philosophies deepen, it becomes increasingly important to...

read more

Exploring The Yoga Sutras: 2.29

Yoga sutra 2.29 states, Yama niyamasana pranayama pratyahara dharana dhyana samadhi astau angani: The eight limbs of yoga are: yama (self-regulation), niyama (observances), asana (posture), pranayama (breath control), pratyahara (withdrawal of senses), dharana...

read more

Exploring The Yoga Sutras: 1.14

  Skipping ahead a few sutras to yoga sutra 1.14, which states, sa tu dirghakala nairantarya satkarasevito drdhabhumih: Practice that is done for a long time, without break and with sincere devotion becomes a firmly rooted, stable, and solid foundation. This is...

read more

The Three Gunas: Tamas, Rajas and Sattva

The word Guna means "that which binds" in Sanskrit. According to Vedic science, all matter and energy that make up the manifest world consists of the three gunas in different quantities. They describe the qualities of nature and states of awareness, and are likened to...

read more

Exploring The Yoga Sutras: 1.4

Building on the first three sutras, yoga sutra 1.4 states, Vritti sarupyam itaratra: When one is not in Self-realization, the Seer takes on the identity of the fluctuations of mind (thought patterns). That is, when we are wrapped up in our thoughts, unable to stay...

read more

Exploring The Yoga Sutras: 1.3

Following up on yoga sutra 1.2 (essentially, yoga is the cessation of mind chatter), yoga sutra 1.3 states, Tada drashtuh svarupevasthanam: then the seer abides in itself, resting in its true nature, also known as self-realization. This sutra explains the ultimate...

read more

Exploring Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras: Sutra 1.2

In yoga sutra 1.2, the second sutra of book one, Patanjali lays out the definition and purpose of yoga. Yogash citta vrtti nirodha: yoga is the cessation of the modifications, or fluctuations, of the mind. This sutra gets right to the heart of why we practice yoga. No...

read more
Introduction to the Yoga Sutras

Introduction to the Yoga Sutras

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, compiled by the sage Patanjali at least 1,700 years ago, is considered one of the main authoritative texts on the practice and philosophy of yoga. The Yoga Sutras describe the eight limbs of yoga, which outline the ways in which one can...

read more