Definition and Types of Yoga

Yoga originates from the word Yuj, which means union, the act of enjoining. In terms of spirituality this word refers to the union of your atma, consciousness, with paratma, collective consciousness.

When our consciousness is disconnected from the collective consciousness, we incur problems, disharmony, stress and feelings of dis-ease.

We all wish to live happily, however, we are ignorant, therefore, we seek happiness in temporary things, such as, wealth, fame, reputation, women, men, family and so on. When we go beyond the limits of our mind, we do not identify primarily with the mind. We begin to identify with paratma, collective consciousness.

Yoga practice commences with the process of controlling the mind and all of its conditions. We make our minds the centre of everything. When we go within we realise that we are pure awareness, conscious of itself.

Yoga is, therefore, important from behavioural, physical, mental, emotional and spiritual points of view. As yoga is a unitive discipline, it can help you feel unity in your self. When we feel separate we do not feel unified in our selves. Yoga is a pathway to self realisation, an experience of presence, of being.

In terms of your personal growth:

  • Yoga enables you to get in touch with your feelings and balance your emotions
  • It enables you to accept and understand yourself and makes you feel comfortable
  • It helps you to be more able to empathise and relate to others
  • Yoga enables you to realise that you are part of something much bigger, not an isolated individual. The approach of yoga enables you to become friends with everyone and everything.

Types of Yoga - Eight Key Types