A description of the history of Yoga and the definition of it's beginnings from Rising Sun Yoga, Reading, Berkshire.

Yoga dates from at least 3000 BC, the word "Yoga" being derived from the Sanstkrit word "Yuj" meaning Union. This gives us a clue as to what the philosophy of Yoga is about. The practice of Yoga helps us to reunite opposites such as the mind and body, the feminine and masculine sides of ourselves, and our inner world and the world outside us. Through Yoga practice we seek truth through direct awareness rather than through intellectual thought. Yoga is a way of life which builds wisdom, and understanding.

Our modern lives, especially in the West, can split our awareness and divide or even repress parts of our personalities. One of the results of this is that we may become wholly immersed in one aspect of life to the exclusion of others. For instance we may become so involved in the world around us that we lose touch with our bodies and our feelings. An ambitious man may become so immersed in his business that he may not realise he is neglecting his health or his friends..

Practicing Yoga can help us expand our awareness to include all aspects of our lives, and lets us get in touch again with those parts of our lives we have may lost awareness of. This includes re-uniting our body and mind, our intellect with feeling, or "our head with our hearts". These paragraphs try to summarise Yoga with "head talk", actually practicing Yoga helps us to "get the feel" of it. Practicing Yoga needs to be a gentle and continuing process, a little at a time, to help us bring our lives back into balance.


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