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Yoga. Essay

2171 words - 9 pages

Yoga is one of the most effective practices to integrate the physical body consciousness to the spiritual consciousness. The exercises of yoga are designed to put pressure on the glandular systems of the body, thereby increasing its efficiency and total health. Using breathing techniques - based on the concept that breath is the source of life in the body, the yoga student gently increases breath control to improve the health and function of the body and mind (Christensen) p.2). These two systems of stretching and breathing then prepare the body and mind for meditation. The student then finds an easy approach to a quiet mind that allows silence and healing from daily stress. Regular daily practice of all three structures of yoga produce a clear mind and a strong body (Rajneesh)p. 54).At the core of almost all schools of yoga lies the practice of meditation (Feuerstein)p.4). Yoga seeks to give a new sense of identity by enlarging our inner horizon. In addition to this great ideal, yoga also recognizes a variety of secondary goals, such as physical well-being, moral integrity, and social service and harmony (Cope)p.1). Yoga is probably the world's most perfect form of exercise. It cultivates cardiovascular health, and usculoskeletal strength and flexibility, without the painful and damaging side effects of high-impact aerobics. It tunes up every organ system - respiratory, digestive, reproductive, endocrine, lymphatic, and nervous, with regular yoga practice you breathe better, sleep, and digest food better (Francina)ps. 11-14). Regular practitioners of yoga describe a whole host of subtle transformation in their lives, changes that seem more mysterious, more difficult to quantify and even describe. Many experience moments of sharply increased mental focus and clarity, and heightened perceptual and intuitive power (Cope)p.12). The techniques developed by the yogis to transcend also help us strip away the things that try to misdefine us - the emotions, sensations, desires, achievements and failures of daily life. Through yoga we learn to develop a greater awareness of our physical and psychological states. As a result, we're in a position to better manage our reactions to the thoughts, feelings and responses we have to the various situations we deal with every day. With greater awareness comes the sensitivity to find and remove the physical and psychological blocks that often keep us from our true selves. We no longer identify with our conditions. Instead of saying, "I am stressed", we begin to say, "I feel stress" or "stress is present." It's a subtle but powerful difference. (www.yogasit.com/why.htm)Developed in India, yoga is a spiritual practice that has been evolving for the last 5,000 years. The original yogis were part of India's ancient Vedic religion which emphasizes rituals, the yogis wanted a direct spiritual experience, one-on-one and not a symbolic ritual. So they developed yoga. Yoga means "union" in Sanskrit, the original language of...

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