Yoga is a subject that is difficult to explain in just a few words. However, I thought I would provide a little bit of information and some great photos I have seen and found inspiring.
I have done yoga on and off for the past few years but when I saw this photo of this 70 year old woman I decided if I want to do that when I am old than I had better start now!
Yoga is a vast collection of spiritual techniques and practices aimed at integrating mind, body and spirit to achieve a state of enlightenment or oneness with the universe. What is normally thought of as "yoga" in the West is really Hatha Yoga, one of the many paths of yoga. The different paths of yoga emphasize different approaches and techniques, but ultimately lead to the same goal of unification and enlightenment.
History Yoga's history has many places of obscurity and uncertainty due to its oral transmission of sacred texts and the secretive nature of its teachings. The early writings on yoga were transcribed on fragile palm leaves that were easily damaged, destroyed or lost. The development of yoga can be traced back to over 5,000 years ago, but some researchers think that yoga may be up to 10,000 years old old. Yoga's long rich history can be divided into four main periods of innovation, practice and development.
Though yoga’s ultimate aim is lofty, its essence is practical and scientific as it emphasizes direct experience and observable results. It is not a religion, but a practice of personal inquiry and exploration. As the cultural and religious diversity of practitioners attest, yogic philosophy speaks to universal truths that can be incorporated within any belief system.
Hatha Yoga: The Physical Path What we commonly call yoga in the West is technically Hatha Yoga. Hatha Yoga (ha="sun" tha="moon" attains the union of mind-body-spirit though a practice of asanas (yoga postures), pranayama (yoga breathing), mudra (body gestures) and shatkarma (internal cleansing). These body centered practices are used to purify the body and cultivate prana and activate kundalini, the subtle energies of the body. Modern Hatha Yoga does not emphasize many of these esoteric practices and focuses primarily on the physical yoga postures.
I am most interested in the physical aspect of yoga though I would like to learn more about the spiritual practices.
Have a look at some photos here:
(diagram of poses)
yoga in times square! crazy!
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