Yoga and Meditation



What is Yoga?

The word meaning of Yoga is union. It means the yoking or connecting of all the powers of the body, mind and soul to God. It is the 4th of the six orthodox systems of Indian Philosophy. According to this philosophy, everything is permeated by the Supreme Universal Spirit or God of which every individual living being is a part. It teaches the means by which the individual soul can be united to the Supreme Soul and thus secure total liberation of the soul.The first book on Yoga Philosophy was compiled by the great sage Patanjali in his classical work called Yoga Sutras. It consists of 196 short aphorisms in four chapters (Samaadi Paadam- 51 sutras, Saadhana Paadam- 55 sutras, Vibhooti Paadam- 56 sutras and Kaivalya Paadam- 34 sutras). It was written around 300 B.C.
Patanjali defines Yoga as the steady control of the senses and the mind. Yoga is the method by which the restless mind is calmed and the energy converted into constructive channels. This is attained by constant practice and by freedom from desires.The mind is always restless and hard to control but a man can attain the control of his mind by hard work and proper use of his energy. Yoga is a ladder to perfection and it has eight steps or rungs called Ashtaanga Yoga. It is an eightfold path to perfection or God realization.

Yoga is a science of man evolved through centuries of practice, based on ancient Indian wisdom and culture. It is the art of living a healthy, balanced, peaceful and contented life. Yoga is capable not only of ensuring physical well-being, mental peace, and harmony but also the spiritual elevation of man. There is no instant Yoga, as it needs training and regular practice. It is not merely closing one’s eyes or of sitting in a special posture, but involves cultivation of a positive attitude and approach to life.


According to Yoga, life is a triangle. The body undergoes birth, growth, change,decay and death. In the first part of life, til about the age of 20, the rate of cell growth (anabolism) exceeds the rate of cell decay (catabolism). In most people, the body keeps an equilibrium of these two processes until around the age of 35. After this age the rate of catabolic process gains precedence. The rate of cell growth comes down and as a result ‘old age’ with its ills and despairs accompanies.
The ancient sages of India have developed an integral system called Yoga to ward off and retard the catabolic process.

Yoga covers many asanas in details. Also covered are pre yoga and post yoga postures with its benefits.

All the sections are covered step by step.

It consists of following sections:

Four Auspicious Asanas
* Siddhasana
* Padmasana
* Bhadrasana
* Simhasana

Asanas (12 Basic Exercises)

* Sirshasana (Headfstand)
* Sarvangasana (Shoulderstand)
* Halasana (The Plough)
* Matsyasana (The Fish)
* Paschimottanasana (The Sitting Forward bend)
* Bhujangasana (The Cobra)
* Salabhasana (The Locust)
* Dhanurasana (The Bow)
* Ardhamatsyendrasana (The Spinal Twist)
* Mayurasana (The Peacock)
* Padahastasana (The Standing Forward Bend)
* Trikonasana (The Triangle)

Pranayama (5 exercises)
* Suryabhedana
* Bhastrika
* Ujjayi
* Sitali
* Sitkari

Stretching Exercises (3 exercises)
* Chakrasana
* Dhanurasana
* Pascimottanasana

Surya Namaskar

Standing Asanas:

* Tadasana
* Utthita Trilokasana
* Virabhadrasana I
* Utthita Parswakonasana
* Parsvottanasana
* Adho Mukha Svanasana
* Uttanasana
* Vrikshasana
* Trikonasana
* Veerabhadrasana II
* Nadarajasana
* Utkatasana

Prone Positions:

* Saral Hasta Bhujangasana
* Shalabhasana (Ardha & Complete Shalabhasana)
* Dhanurasana
* Naukasana
* Makarasana
* Uragasana
Sitting Asanas:

* Dandasana
* Virasana
* Baddha Konasana
* Janu Sirsasana
* Triang Mukh Paschimottanasana
* Paschimottanasana
* Ustrasana
* Urdhava Dhanurasana
* Bharadvajasana
* Marichayasana
* Swastikasana / Sukhasana / Padmasana
* Padmasana (Baddha)
* Padmasana (Utthit)
* Parvatasana
* Padmasana Yogamudra (Type1 & 2)
* Vipareetakarani Mudra
* Vakrasana (Type 1)
* Vajrasana
* Paschimottanasana
* Setubandasana

Supine Asanas:

* Supta Vajrasana
* Savasana
* Salamba Sarvangasana
* Salamba Sirsasana
* Halasana
* Tadagasan
* Pavanamuktasana (With both legs)
* Ardhachakrasana
* Uttanpadasana (With both legs)
* Uttanpadasana (With One Leg)
* Viparitakarani
* Matsyasana
* Naukasana
* Merudhandasana
* Kandarasana

It covers totally 84 important asanas. In addition Yoga cure is explained for diseases such as:

* Anxiety & Depression
* Asthma
* Backpain
* Diabetes
* Hypertension & Heart Disease
* Migraine & Headache
* Neck pain
* Obesity & Overweight
* Stomach Disorders
* Stress Management
* Lack of Concentration & Memory
* Juvenile Delinquency
* Rheumatoid Arthritis
* Sexual Disorders
* Impotency
* Lack of Flexibility
* Lethargy & Inefficiency

Classical Yoga texts give the list of 84 important Asanas of which 32 are recommended by the Gheranda Samhita as being more important, satisfactory and generally useful. These 32 Asanas are listed below:

1. Siddhasana The Perfect Posture.
2. Padmasana The Lotus “
3. Bhadrasan The Gentle “
4. Muktasana The Free “
5. Vajrasana The Thunderbolt
6. Svastikasna The Prosperous “
7. Simhasana The Lion
8. Gomukhasana The Cow
9. Virasana The Hero
10. Guptasana The Hidden “
11. Matsyasana The Fish
12. Mrtasana (Savasana) The Corpse
13. Yogasana The Stretched Forward Bend in Lotus
14. Uttana Kurmasana The Lifted Tortoise
15. Uttana Mandukasana The Lifted Frog
16. Dhanurasana The Bow
17. Matsyendrasana The Spinal Twist
18. Gorakshasana The Cowherd
19. Paschimottanasana The Forward Bend
20. Utkatasana The Hazardous “
21. Samkatasana The Dangerous “
22. Mayurasan The Peacock
23. Kukkutasana The cock
24. Kurmasana The Tortoise
25. Vrikshasana The Tree
26. Mandukasana The Frog
27. Garudasana The Eagle
28. Vrshbasana The Bull
29. Salabhasana The Locust
30. Makarasana The Crocodile
31. Ushtrasana The Camel
32. Bhujangasana The Cobra

The purpose of these Asanas is only to render the body supple, young and fit so that one can remain youthful and supple far beyond the normal span of years.




Categories: Yoga and Meditation

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