Ashtanga yoga – The eight limbs

Patanjali explained the 8 step path to achieve Union, known as the Ashtanga Yoga – The eight limbs of yoga.

Lets know the eight limbs or the eight branches of yoga.

1.Yamas: Yamas as the universal vows.
There are five yamas:
a.Ahimsa (nonviolence)
(non-injury)
b.Satya (truth)
c.Asteya (non-stealing)
d.Brahmacharya (continence)
(right use of energy)
e.Aparigraha (generous)
(non-covetousness)

2.Niyama: Niyamas are self observances.
Five Niyamas are:
a.Saucha (purity)
b.Santosha (contentment)
c.Tapas (discipline)
d.Svadhyana (self-study)
e.Ishwara Pranidhana
(surrender to divine)

3.Asanas: Postures and physical poses
Asanas have two facets:
a.Pose (assuming the pose)
b.Repose (finding perfection
and maintaining)

4.Pranayama: Prana means life force.
Ayama means expansion.
Expansion of life force by
a.Inhalation
b.Exhalation
c.Retention

5.Pratyahara: Conquest of –
The senses and the mind.
The Sadhana

6.Dharana: Mastery of attention and
Intention.

7.Dhayana: Witnessing Awareness
Meditation

8.Samadhi: Union with the divine
The goal of yoga.

The ultimate goal of Yoga is union with the Supreme, God, Allah, Krishna Consciousness, Brahman, Buddha Nature, Christ.

Yoga is the pathway to bring us to a realization that we all are inseparably One.