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The Record of Yoga - Wherever Did Yoga Come From?  from SALLOKHAN's blog

Patanjali's Yoga Sutras is a fantastic exposition of the philosophical principles, strong truths, and professions of yoga. It organizes the professions in to nine "limbs," or types, of yoga practice. Certain meditation practices aren't given; only kinds of professions are discussed.

Lots of its sutras (aphorisms) describe and discuss these practices. This amazing treatise by an enlightened yogi addresses the universal human problem of apparent divorce from Lord (avidya, not knowing the Supreme Reality) and reveals us just how to overcome the intellectual habits and illusions that keep us in this condition.

Like tree limbs, which appear in sequence, the initial professions come first. Because they develop, adult and bear good fresh fruit, another kinds are practiced. For example, yama makes one to apply niyama. Patanjali calls the past three aspects of niyama "kriya yoga" ("kriya" means action).

Marshall Govindan requires the position why these three elements of kriya (or action) yoga constitute the entire of Patanjali's yoga. Nevertheless, all seven limbs are mentioned in good depth in passages 2.30 through 3.8 of the Sutras and provide a total information of yoga.

In passage 2.1, Patanjali says: "Kriya yoga consists of tapas (austerity, self-discipline), svadhyaya (self-study), and Ishvara pranidhana (devotional surrender to God)." (Note: The words in parentheses are generally accepted translations of the Sanskrit terms.) In the "eight-limbed" path, the kriya yoga practices of niyama precede asana (meditation posture), pranayama (breath control), pratyahara (withdrawal of the feelings from their objects), dharana (concentration),

dhyana (uninterrupted, heavy concentration), and samadhi (oneness with the thing of meditation). For this reason, "kriya yoga" is sometimes translated "preliminary yoga." However, the very first of the eight limbs, yama, includes five abstentions (don'ts), and the five components of niyama are observances (dos), so the kriya yoga techniques of niyama ryt 200 also be translated "activity yoga," which implies doing something.

The following remarks from Govindan's guide on the Sutras contradict Yogananda and different enlightened yogis, who concur that the yoga of Patanjali could be the "eight-limbed" path.

Foreword (xiv, xv) by G. Feuerstein: "... while Patanjali's teaching is becoming virtually equated with eight-limbed yoga (ashtanga yoga), he herself named his way that of action yoga (kriya yoga) in pada 2.1." "The aphorisms in the Yoga Sutras working exclusively with the seven limbs appear to own been cited by Patanjali or consequently added to his text. There is number actual adequate reason for why Patanjali applied the name kriya yoga for his teachings."

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