What is Yoga?
Yoga is the union of body, mind, soul, and spirit. According to Yoga, people suffer due to the illusion of separation between our individual consciousness from Universal Consciousness or Brahman. The Yoga Sutras are a practical to guide your spiritual journey of remembering that union.
The Yoga Sutras contain a set of observances and practices to guide your spiritual journey. These are known as the Eight Limbs of Yoga.
1. Yama: Correct behavior toward others.
- Not stealing
- Not wasting energy
- Abstaining from greed
2. Niyama: The principles by which you should live your own life
- Spiritual observances
3. Asana: The seat of consciousness; the yogi’s seat and postures to prepare the body.
4. Pranayama: Expanding the life force through breathing exercises.
5. Pratyahara: Turning the senses inward to explore the inner universe.
6. Dharana: Effortless focused attention; training the mind to meditate.
7. Dhyana: A continuous flow, meditation perfected.
8. Samadhi: Lost or found in the Divine; unity.
The first four yamas prepare the body for the next three, which take you to the doorway of the eighth.
Dharana, Dhyana, and Samadhi practiced together is known as Sanyama. Settling the mind, having a subtle intention, and releasing it into the field of Infinite Organizing Power gives you knowledge of the laws of nature of an object and Yogic Powers (Siddhis).
The Practice of Samadhi
The practice of Samadhi is only possible when meditation is perfected. Samadhi has several levels:
- You gain knowledge of physical objects.
- You have an understanding the abstract nature of things.
- You move beyond objects until you are only aware of bliss.
- Only the I-ness remains.
- You become one with the Soul—no mind—only infinite peace and bliss.
- The heart feels bigger than the universe.
- The constant experience of Nirvikalpa along with daily activity.
Dharma Megha Samadhi
- The highest Samadhi, the state of Unclouded Truth (Cloud of Virtue)—“All beautiful qualities are there.”
- All desires, even the desire to know God, have dissolved.
- All that affects the mind, the causes of suffering, and the bondage of action disappear.
We will all eventually reach the state where Pure Unbounded Consciousness remains forever established in its own Absolute nature.