What is Yoga?

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The meaning of Yoga is “union”. The union of our body with our mind and soul as well as all connected with each other. The term Yoga is termed and defined in many ways by Indian religious and philosophical views and traditions. According to “Katha Upanishad “, the state of mind when all five senses combine with the mind, along with inactive intellect, is Yoga. But in “ Bhagwada Gita “ Yoga is the “ equanimity “. Yoga is the “skill in action “ While in the“Yoga Sutras of Patanjali “, it is written that the Yoga is the suppression of the activities done by the mind.

Yoga is the blessing given by Ancient India to the world. It was developed between the fifth and sixth century BCE in Ancient India and is written in Rigveda. Yoga holds its roots from the ancient Indus Valley Civilization. According to the Archaeologists, the “Pashupati Seal “ found depicts some symbol which resembles Yoga poses and postures of a common Yoga and Meditation pose.

Yoga’s history is very rich and diverse. It is basically divided into four parts that are as follows:

1. Pre-classical era
2. Classical era
3. Post-classical era
4. Modern era

1. Pre Classical Era:

The beginning of the Yoga holds the time of Indus Civilization in ancient India. The Rig Veda mentions the first texts about Yoga.

2. Classical Era:

The classical era of the Yoga was defined by the Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. They are believed to be the first systematic description of Yoga.

3. Post-Classical Era:

After few centuries of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, a different form of Yoga was developed which focused on the rejuvenation of mind with the help of physical body to achieve enlightenment. Introduction of Tantra Yoga and Hatha Yoga took in this period of time.

4. Modern Era:

Between the period of late eighteenth century and nineteenth century, the Yoga was introduced to the West by the Indian Yoga Gurus or Yoga masters. It all began when the great Swami Vivekanandastonished the western people by his lecture and ideas about the Yoga. After that, Yoga traveled like time, is now being practiced in all over the world.

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