History of Yoga

Welcome to the Yoga for beginners. As a beginner you might want to know a little on the history of Yoga. It is know that Yoga is originated from India and begin more than 10,000 years ago. However there are researches that it may be even more than that, it is still unknown to many of us. In the past Yoga is being passed down through words of mouth. Some researcher said it begins as long as there is civilization. Yoga is being script in Sanskrit, a language, on stones or leaves. In Sanskrit words, Yoga means union of body and mind.

The history can be break into 4 categories:

1. Vedic Period


The period of Vedas is embodied by a holy scripture of Brahmanism. A mantra that sings praises to the Hindu god forms the fundamental of current Hinduism. Ancient Yogic learning that are found in the Vedas earn the name Vedic Yoga. Such Yogic learning are distinguished by rituals and ceremonies that attempt to stretch the mental limits of an individual.

Rishis, who are devoted Vedic Yogis, lead the Vedic people in their pursuit of harmonizing life with god. Rishis are often perceived to possess the ability to see through life and reality, which are gained through demanding spiritual training. This is the period that Yogis living in seclusion (in forests) were recorded.


2. Pre-classical Period

It happens approximately 2000 years ago till second century AD. It is a creation of Yoga that came into it’s own Upanishads. There are over 200 scriptures of Upanishad. During this period Yoga is developed to achieve deep meditation which transient the body and minds whereby Yogis discover the inner true nature.

Most remarkable Yoga script is the Bhagavad-Gita (Lord’s songs) developed around 500 B.C.E. It emphasized on exceed ego through Bhakti (loving devotion) and Jnana (knowledge or contemplation) and Karma (selfless action).


3.Classical Period

While during the pre-classical era, yoga was characterized by a mixture of multiple concepts, beliefs and techniques that often controverted each other.

Patanjali’s Yoga-Sutras, a methodical exhibition of yoga defined the classical period. Commonly known as “Classical Yoga”, the context written around the second century depicts the teachings of Raja Yoga.

The development of yoga into an “eight limbed path” towards enlightenment is Patanjali’s legacy. His teachings still exert significant influence on current yoga style


4. Post-classical Period

This is a period after Patanjali which is a few centuries later. It affirms ultimate unity of everything, an evolution of Yoga which started to explore the hidden potential of a body. The new breed of Yoga master created a practices designed to rejuvenate the body and prolong its life. The advance technique of energizing the physical body and reorganized the immortal connection. This lead to the creation of Hatta Yoga, a widely practiced version throughout the world until now.

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