Living and Breathing Yoga

Patanjali's Eight Limbs of Yoga start with Ahimsa - compassion, or put another way, non-violence. 

1. Yama - Points for inner contemplation: Ahimsa - non -violence to oneself and others in thought, word and deed.

Satya - truth

Asteya - non stealing

Brahmacharya - conservation of vital energy, increasing willpower and focus.

Aparigraha - non-possessiveness, non-grasping, non-greed. Letting go of the need to acquire things for the sake of hoarding, allowing space in relationships, letting go of past experiences. Living in the moment. 

2. Niyama - Outward observances - Saucha - cleanliness 

Santosa - contentment, satisfaction, gratitude

Tapas - heat, authentic spiritual practice

Swadhyaya - study of the inner Self, study of spiritual scriptures

Iswara pranidhana - surrender to a higher source, to the source of creation

3. Asana - yoga postures

4. Pranayama - control of the vital life energy in the form of breathing techniques

5. Pratyahara - withdraw of the senses in towards the Self, ability to be aware of the external whilst exploring and listening inwards

6. Dharana - concentration on a point

7. Dhyana - meditation, spontaneous flow of concentration where the mind, body and spirit are in harmony

8. Samadhi - enlightenment, Self-realisation


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