What is Yoga?

The word Yoga comes from the Sanskrit word yuj, which means to unite. Its principles are to integrate all aspects of the body with the mind and the soul, this then reconnects us to our sense of identity, allowing us to achieve ultimate happiness with a balanced life. Yoga is an ancient practice for living healthily that combines physical and spiritual disciplines so that we catch sight of the soul. Real Yoga brings together breathwork (Pranayama), with bodywork (Asana), it originated in India more than 5,000 years ago. Yoga was practiced by yogis long before any written document came into existence. These wise yogis over the millennia passed on their discipline to younger generations. Ultimately, many different schools of yoga developed in different parts of India.d settings.

Southampton yoga class

The earliest written record of yoga is by Patanjali, an Indian sage, who lived around 2,500 years ago. Patanjali wrote on how to bring these many different schools together.  We start our teaching with the first of Patanjalis 196 Sutras;

“ atha yoganusasanam “ (Now the exposition of Yoga )

 The second Sutra is “ yogah citta vrttii nirodah” (Yoga is the cessation of the turnings of the mind). In Mikes therapy work, it was the mind that was causing the separation that created the detachment, so would the ceasing of the turning of the mind  stop the detachment? The answer……YES!

Yoga itself is a type of therapy that connects the body, breath and mind activating our Prana (Life Force) to harmonize. It uses physical postures, breathing control and meditation to improve overall well-being. Yoga practice gives us access to The 5 Sheaths (Pancha Koshas). These are:

  1. Anamaya: The Hardware  (Physical Body)   
  2. Manamaya: The Software  (Mental/Emotional Body)   
  3. Pranamaya: The Power Source  (Energy Body)   
  4. Vignamaya: The Information Manual  (Wisdom Body)   
  5. Anandamaya: The Oneness  (Bliss Body)   
Triangle pose in yoga class