What is Yoga Philosophy?
Yoga philosophy is the most important aspect of a yoga teacher training. Why? Because it helps you understand the self. Do you want to know who you are? Likewise, your place in the universe? As a result, learning yoga philosophy can help you achieve the ultimate purpose of life.
To teach yoga philosophy we at Shanti Yoga School refer to ancient yogic texts:
- Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras
- Bhagavad Gita
- Hatha Yoga Pradipika
How do ancient texts explain yoga philosophy?
The Vedas are a collection of texts dating back thousands of years. Moreover, the content within these works are thought to be even older. Also, these are the first texts that contain the word “yoga”. In it, the Vedas define yoga as union with the divine.
Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras
Patanjali was a wise sage who compiled a concise definition of yoga before 400 CE. Perhaps the most popular sutra is “Yoga Citta Vritti Nirodah”. Consequently, it roughly translates to “yoga is when thoughts stop”. Therefore, you achieve yoga when the mind is calm and clear.
The Bhagavad Gita is a Hindu epic from the Puranic period (around the 400 BCE – 200 CE). First, Krishna helps Arjuna understand his purpose in life. While doing so he details the four paths of yoga:
- Bhakti, or devotion.
- Jnana, or knowledge.
- Karma, or action, and
- Raja, or the royal way.
Would you like to know more? Perhaps you can learn more at a Yoga Teacher Training.
Hatha Yoga Pradipika
The Hatha Yoga Pradipika was compiled by the sage Swatmarama in the 1400’s. Because yoga was often misunderstood there was a need for clearer instructions. Consequently, this text systematized yoga in an understandable way. Because of the clearer instructions yoga exploded in popularity.
Do you want to learn more about yoga philosophy? The best way is to attend a yoga teacher training. Learn more here.