the word ‘yoga’ is understood differently by many of us; for some it’s purely a physical exercise, a way to get stronger, healthier and more flexible; for others it’s meditating each day, and for others still, it might mean chanting mantras or worshipping a deity. patanjali is known as a sage, but it’s very unlikely that one man wrote these texts – and far more likely that the texts are the culmination of what a group of patanjali’s disciples wrote over a period of time. these are commonly known as the ‘eight limbs of yoga’: after practising yoga for a while, many of us may wonder if there’s more to it than what we do on that rubber mat; and of course, there is.
it’s interesting to note that these five yamas and five niyamas resemble the ten commandments, and the ten virtues of buddhism, so we’re all ‘different’ yet ‘united’ at the same time…. the yamas traditionally guide us towards practices concerned with the world around us, but often we can take them as a guide of how to act towards ourselves too. whether you consider yourself ‘spiritual’ or not though, and whether you practise yoga or not, these are all ways in which we can help ourselves and the world around us to be a better place. if we are to really benefit from a yoga practice, it has to expand beyond the mat and into life.
come visit the kripalu campus, nestled in the breathtaking berkshire mountains, for a nourishing retreat full of yoga, nutritious meals, mindful outdoor experiences, and more. now online, kripalu offers a variety of teacher trainings and certifications to deepen your practice and share your passion with the world. explore upcoming programs led by kripalu faculty and expert presenters on topics ranging from yoga to societal and personal transformation. by firmly grasping the flower of a single virtue, a person can lift the entire garland of yama and niyama. micah mortali, director of outdoor education and programming and founder of the kripalu school of mindful outdoor leadership, says it’s important to address character first, so you can support your physical practice. “if you start to do a ton of asana or pranayama but haven’t addressed that you are violent, depressed, or anxious, it’s going to come out,” micah says.
for five decades, kripalu has been a national leader in yoga- and mindfulness-based education. sally explains that you can approach the teachings in a very cut-and-dry way, or more subtly. but it can also mean not speaking violently about others, by refusing to gossip. bramacharya, the process of moderation, can show up for some as moderate eating habits. micah says he comes back again and again to satya, or non-lying, and being straightforward in his communication. he says that studying the yamas and niyamas have taught him how to navigate his everyday interactions, especially when it comes to having difficult conversations.
the yamas, and their complement, the niyamas, represent a series of “right living” or ethical rules within yoga philosophy. it means “reining in” or “control”. these are restraints for proper conduct as given in the vedas and the yoga sutras. they are a form of moral imperatives, commandments, rules or goals. an overview of the yamas and niyamas, the first two limbs of yoga according to the yoga sutras of patanjali. the yamas and niyamas are yoga’s ethical guidelines laid out in the first two limbs of patanjali’s eightfold path. they’re like a map written to guide you the practice of the yamas and niyamas definitely inspires us to remember that yoga is a way of life — not just something we do for 90 minutes, 5 yamas of yoga, 5 yamas of yoga, yamas and niyamas study guide, what are the 10 yamas and niyamas, yamas yoga.
the yamas and niyamas are the first two limbs of the path to enlightenment, and they are often seen as ‘moral codes’, or ways of ‘right the yamas and niyamas are the foundation for a meaningful and life-changing yoga path. living according to these principles brings peace, joy, the book focuses on being good to ourselves and others as well as being present in the moment through 5 yamas (nonviolence, truthfulness, nonstealing, nonexcess, yamas and niyamas in daily life, what is niyama in yoga, difference between yamas and niyamas, benefits of yama and niyama, how many niyamas are there, ahimsa yamas, essay on yamas and niyamas, saucha, yama first limb of yoga, yamas and niyamas poster.
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