Yoga can be viewed as a spiritual practice, which often uses the imagery of a tree with roots, a trunk, branches, blossoms, and fruits, to convey their message. Each “branch” of yoga represents a different focus and set of characteristics. They are broad of six types:
- Hatha Yoga: It is a specialized physical and mental branch of Yoga, design to purify the body and mind.
- Raja Yoga: This branch involves meditation and strict adherence to a series of disciplinary steps known as the eight limbs of Yoga.
- Karma Yoga: It is a very selfless path of services that provides for creating a future devoid of any negativity or selfishness.
- Bhakti Yoga: It is primarily associated with the devotion and path of positively channelizing energies and inculcate the sense of acceptance and tolerance within.
- Jnana yoga: This branch of yoga is about wisdom, the path of scholar, and developing the intellect through study.
- Tantra Yoga: It is relatively a darker branch of Yoga, which is the pathway of ritual, ceremony, or consummation of a relationship.
Yoga philosophy and practice were first described by Patanjali in the classical text, ” Yoga Sutra” which is said to be the authoritative text on yoga. It can be considered as a mystical science. Yoga helps to achieve peace of mind and an epitome of self-awareness. It is the fountain of youth, that makes your mind perennially fresh and young. Yoga advocates that the essential human nature is not merely happiness but independently arising ever-flowing, unparalleled, ever-expanding ecstasy. Happiness, ‘Ananda in Sanskrit’ is always inside us, we are looking at the wrong place to find it. And more importantly, the source of happiness is within us. Yoga helps to understand and nurture this inner happiness, which in turn will help in the process of self-actualization and tranquillity.
This is yoga- pure mysticism, meaning, it is about the mystery of life, the mystery hidden inside every human being and every human heart. This is what differentiates yoga from other forms of physical activity. It transcends a sense of purity and goodness within oneself.
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