Hello! my name is Krishang and in today’s blog I am going to talk about my understanding of Yoga.
There are 4 types of Yoga and 8 steps or limbs of yoga. These steps are sutras or formulas.
The 4 types of Yoga are Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Dhyana Yoga & Jnana Yoga.
Karma Yoga is doing everything properly with good intentions to improve yourself. All the actions that one does every day should be towards making the society better and not just yourself i.e. you should not be selfish. Just like Karma means “Do Good and Good will come to You”, Karma Yoga is practicing this in all the actions in our daily life.
Bhakti Yoga is surrendering yourself to God. As Guru Ji explained, “if you have a problem and you have asked for help from everyone around you (Parents, Teachers, Family & friends) and no one understands your problem, then you explain the problem to God and surrender yourself. God will help you overcome your problem and provide guidance.
Dhyana Yoga is basically concentration or Meditation. Dhyana yoga has been called by different names e.g. it is Chen in China, Zen in Japan and Concentration in English.
Jnana Yoga is defined as “Mental Gym”. Jnana yoga is training your mind and keeping it sharp.
Now for the 8 steps or sutras of Yoga: Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana, Samadhi.
Yama is getting rid of negative thoughts, by being nice (not doing bad) and forget if someone did something mean to you, you can think about it for a minute then forget about it. This helps in clearing your mind by following moral code of conduct and ethics.
Niyama is being happy with what you’ve got and being content with what you have. It also means following and sticking to a schedule and being disciplined e.g. brushing your teeth twice a day, having meals at set times etc.
Asana are the Yoga poses to get your body strong and flexible, both internally & externally. A strong mind needs a strong body.
Pranayama is controlling your breathing to stay calm and peaceful. This also helps in improving the immune system.
Ahara is to take/receive from outside while Pratyahara is the opposite i.e. take from inside/inwards. So Pratyahara is looking inwards by blocking out all of the 5 senses so you can concentrate inwards. You can block sense of sight by going in a dark room, hearing by going to a quiet place, smell by not having any candles, taste by not eating etc.
Dharana is training your mind to concentrate on one thing at a time for a short period of time.
Dhyana is practicing meditation for longer periods of time.
Then finally you will find a “state of union” which is called Samadhi. Samadhi is basically self-realization.
I thought this was a very interesting topic in class and I hope we continue to practice it in class. I am planning to try it at home.
Thank you for reading.