There are many forms of yoga but one of the most commonly known types of Yoga is Hatha Yoga, the psychical movements, body posture and breathing exercises which, if done correctly, is an excellent way to stay in shape, tone the body and be healthy.
As international Yoga Day approaches on 21 June, many people are asking, what is Yoga?
Yoga is a method for restraining the natural turbulence of thoughts, which otherwise impartially prevent all men, of all lands, from glimpsing their true nature of Spirit. Yoga cannot know a barrier of East and West any more than does the healing and equitable light of the sun. – Paramahansa Yogananda
The origin of Yoga
Yoga and yogic practice were born in the east, with deep roots in India and has directly links to Sanathan Dharma beliefs and followers. That said yoga, although now a world wife practise, was initially practised among Hindus, Buddhists and followers of Jainism.
So what exactly is Yoga?
The Sanskrit word Yoga means to connect with the Divine. So besides being a great form of exercise to stay fit and flexible, the practise of Hatha Yoga also helps to calm the mind, relax the body and clear worldly blockages which prevent us from seeing ourselves as Divine beings experiencing a human journey. Constant practise therefore links the person practising Yoga, to the Divine and the experience becomes a divine reality.
Surya Namaskar meaning and procedure
One of the most popular practices of Yoga is Surya Namaskar which is roughly translated in English as Sun Salutations. The meaning of Surya Namaskar as stated as basically salutations or greetings to the Sun. however there is a much deeper meaning to this practice. For more information on Surya Namaskar, meaning, practise and step by step guidance visit this detailed article by The Art of Living founded by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.
Ways to practise Yoga
It is best to practise Yoga under the teachings of a learned and experienced Yoga practitioner or teacher.
And with attention on International Yoga Day, it is one of the best times to start Yoga! Check out this cool 15 minute Yoga exercise with Shilpa Shetty!
Stay blessed and enjoy being fit, fabulous and in tune with Yoga!