The Yoga Lifestyle
How do you maintain a yoga lifestyle? Certainly doing yoga at the beach, while on vacation, or during a teacher training is one thing. So what about when you’re back home? How do you maintain a physical yoga practice?
Furthermore, living a yoga lifestyle goes beyond what you do on the mat. For this reason, this is what we strive to teach at Shanti Yoga: how to be a yogi in the modern world – for the long haul.
Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras introduced the world to the eight limbs of yoga. As a result, these limbs are a guide to living yogically. They are:
- Yamas, meaning external observances. It’s how you interact with the outside world.
- Niyamas, or internal restraints. This is how you interact with your internal world.
- Asana, or physical postures.
- Pranayama, or breathing techniques.
- Pratyahara, or sense withdrawal.
- Dharana, or singular focus.
- Dhyana, or meditation.
- Samadhi, aka sustained bliss, nirvana, or enlightenment.
Yamas and Niyamas
The first two limbs have subsets.
Yamas breaks down into the following:
- Ahimsa, which is non-violence.
- Satya, or truth.
- Asteya, or non-stealing.
- Brahmacharya, or non-excessiveness. Sometimes translated as celibacy, or a
- and, Aparigraha, which is non-possessiveness or greed.
Niyamas is made up of:
- Saucha, or purity.
- Santosha, which means contentment.
- Tapas, meaning self-discipline and training of the senses. Consequently, it is this concept that recommends we stick to a regular yoga practice after a teacher training.
- Svadhyaya, or study of the self.
- Finally, Ishvara Pranidhana, which is awareness of the unity of all things. Aka complete surrender.
When taken together, these limbs provide a firm base for living a yogic lifestyle.
Which of these limbs do you agree with? Are there any you struggle with currently?
Want to learn more details about each of the limbs? Attend a training.