|[ Excerpt from The Science of Yoga, page vi ]
The origins of yoga can be traced backed several millennia to the Vedic culture of ancient India, even further back than recorded history can take us.
Though lifestyles have changed, attitudes have shifted and technologies have become more complex, the human being in its essential physical and mental make-up remains relatively unchanged. In general, we possess the same potential for despicable behaviour and noble conduct as we always have.
Historical cultures may, however, have nurtured a foundation of support for higher values, causing the peoples of those times to emulate higher moral and ethical standards of living—more ready facilitating their potential to reach greater states of awareness and evolution.
But we are beings living as we always have—as a product of our times—possessing the same innate qualities. What differ are the societal influences which greatly affect the manifestation of those qualities. What remains consistent is our purpose in life—that of self-discovery, self-awareness and evolution. That’s why yoga is as relevant today as it was thousands of years ago and will remain until time immortal.
This 'science of all sciences' presents us with a well-trodden path to explore our mostly 'unknown Self' and to gain a clearer understanding of the current world around us. Yoga provides us with a comprehensive scope of tools and approaches for self-fulfilment, knowledge, balance and wellbeing.
We must always remember that we are a product of our time. This 'self' that we have come to know is not our 'real self'; it is not the higher, unconditioned, pure and 'Eternal Self' within.
The science of yoga helps us to re-discover our true self and as a result, bring forth a peace, a joy, and a sense of fulfilment previously unknown to us.
Yoga is not twisting and bending and contorting the body, balancing on our head or sitting cross-legged listening to some cosmic, new-age music.
It is not traipsing off to some yoga class in a downtown studio with our polypropylene yoga-mat slung over our shoulder in a stylish, hand-embroidered Tibetan silk carrying case.
Yoga is a 'way of life' -- a life wherein the principles and practices of yoga are made the foundation of our day-to-day existence, compelling us to live in a highly moralistic and ethical way -- in a manner that is consistent with natural laws and in harmony with the world around us...
NOTE: This yoga article is an excerpt from The Science of Yoga, an online yoga training program with streaming yoga videos and 600 pages of step-by-step yoga instruction.
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... It is indeed a masterful work."
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