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Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. An Introduction to Yoga by Annie Besant. These lectures are intended to give an outline of Yoga, in order to prepare the student to take up, for practical purposes, the Yoga sutras of Patanjali, the chief treatise on Yoga. I have on hand, with my friend Bhagavan Das as collaborateur, a translation of these Sutras, with Vyasa's commentary, and a further commentary and elucidation written in the light of Theosophy.
To prepare the student for the mastering of that more difficult task, these lectures were designed; hence the many references to Patanjali. They may, however, also serve to give to the ordinary lay reader some idea of the Science of sciences, and perhaps to allure a few towards its study. This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. Get A Copy. Kindle Edition , 75 pages. Published first published More Details Original Title.
Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about An Introduction to Yoga , please sign up. Be the first to ask a question about An Introduction to Yoga. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Aug 08, Robert rated it really liked it. I got this book as a freebie on my Kindle App.
I have been practicing yoga for a while now and it gave a great history and look at some wonderful ideas about yoga as a whole. It is broken up into different "lectures" and those are broken into different segments as well. I recommend this for people who have been practicing for a while or even newbies to yoga.
Even if you are not into yoga yet and are thinking about it, the book gives some wonderful things to think about. The only thing I had some I got this book as a freebie on my Kindle App. The only thing I had some issue with was I had to go back an re-read some sentences in any given section to really understand it. I'm going to finish this book since I'm more than halfway through it.
It came installed on my iPod so I thought I'd give it a whirl.
Introduction to Yoga - Harvard Health
Since I know no Sanskrit or basically nothing about the philosophy of Yoga, I'm pretty lost. I'm reading the words but not really grasping what I'm reading and certainly not retaining. Would recommend for a newbie unless really interested in the topic and willing to read supplemental material to make the investment of time worthwhile.
Jun 13, James Perkins rated it liked it. This short book discusses the basic principles behind the spiritual aspects of yoga. Its chapters correspond to four lectures delivered at the thirty-second anniversary of the Theosophical Society held in Benares India on four consecutive evenings at the end of While it contains a reasonable outline, the book is hardly an introduction - people who are new to this kind of thinking might be put off by its esotericism.
Some background reading in the field would help anybody trying to unders This short book discusses the basic principles behind the spiritual aspects of yoga. Some background reading in the field would help anybody trying to understand it. Yoga is more of a philosophy, as it lacks the experimentation, measurement and objectivity required of science. However, the book was interesting, as I had not read anything about yoga before. Mar 16, Alexkidd rated it liked it.
I expected much more from an introduction book, giving me more historical details, about spirituality and maybe some pictures but nothing. If you have 2 hours to spend read it, if not you find books about yoga more interesting as I did. Sep 18, Bernie Gourley rated it liked it Shelves: yoga. This is a philosophy book--or theosophy if you want to get technical about it. I was ignorant of who Annie Besant was when I read this book. Given my respect for—and alignment with-- the ideas of Krishnamurti, I must admit that this biased me a bit against the Society.
So theosophy is knowledge of the divine and it suggests that a mystical path to knowing god can be achieved.
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The second lecture puts yoga into context as one of the six Indian schools of Philosophy, mostly comparing and contrasting yoga to Samkhya and Vedanta—the schools that yoga is most closely linked to. The third lecture considers yoga as an applied science. The final lecture discusses the practice of yoga. In more specific detail, the book addresses the following topics: the 4 states of consciousness, the 3 aspects of consciousness, the 5 stages of the mind, the 3 gunas, the 5 functions of pain, and the 7 obstacles to yogic progress.
Given this book is the product is 19th century English, its readability is tolerable—especially considering the complex and abstract concepts under consideration. This book skips straight to the last three limbs, i. Oct 15, Claudia rated it liked it.
Introduction to Yoga
An interesting read into the background and origins of yoga and its involvement with science, spirit, body and mind. Recommended for those who are interested in grasping the understanding of yoga and concepts behind it, so not necessarily those who practice it. Some of the terminology is a little difficult for someone who doesn't study or understand or have any interest in philosophy or its related areas. Majority of the book, however, is well detailed and easy to determine the ideas being presen An interesting read into the background and origins of yoga and its involvement with science, spirit, body and mind.
The number of asanas used in modern yoga has increased rapidly from a nominal 84 in , as illustrated in Joga Pradipika , to some in Light on Yoga and over performed by Dharma Mittra by Yoga has developed into a worldwide multi-billion dollar business, involving classes, certification of teachers, clothing, books, videos, equipment, and holidays. The United Nations General Assembly established 21 June as " International Day of Yoga ",    celebrated annually in India and around the world from Yoga is practised with a variety of methods by all Indian religions.
Classical yoga incorporates epistemology, metaphysics, ethical practices, systematic exercises and self-development techniques for body, mind and spirit. Buddhist yoga encompasses an extensive variety of methods that aim to develop key virtues or qualities known as the 37 aids to awakening. The ultimate goal of Buddhist yoga is bodhi awakening or nirvana cessation , which is traditionally seen as the permanent end of suffering dukkha and rebirth.
In early Buddhism , various yogic practices were taught including:. These meditations were seen as being supported by the other elements of the eightfold path , such as the practice of ethics , right exertion , sense restraint and right view. It is also associated with samadhi mental unification, focus and dhyana a state of meditative absorption. Later developments in the various Buddhist traditions led to new innovations in yogic practices. The Theravada school, while remaining relatively conservative, still developed new ideas on meditation and yogic phenomenology in their later works, the most influential of which is the Visuddhimagga.
Mahayana meditation practices also developed and adopted new yogic methods, such as the use of mantra and dharani , pure land practices which aimed at rebirth in a pure land or buddhafield , and visualization methods. Chinese Buddhism developed its own methods, such as the Chan practice of Koan introspection and Hua Tou.
Likewise, Tantric Buddhism also Mantrayana, Vajrayana developed and adopted tantric methods, which remain the basis of the Tibetan Buddhist yogic systems, including the Six yogas of Naropa , Kalacakra , Mahamudra and Dzogchen. Jain yoga has been a central practice in Jainism. Jain spirituality is based on a strict code of nonviolence or ahimsa which includes vegetarianism , almsgiving dana , right faith in the three jewels , the practice of austerities tapas such as fasting , and yogic practices.
Like Yoga and Sankhya, Jainism believes in a multiplicity of individual souls which bound by their individual karma. Later forms of Jain yoga adopted Hindu influences, such as ideas from Patanjali's yoga and later Tantric yoga in the works of Haribhadra and Hemachandra respectively. The Jains also developed a progressive path to liberation through yogic praxis, outlining several levels of virtue called gunasthanas. In the modern era, new forms of Jain meditation have also been developed. Vedanta is a varied tradition with numerous sub-schools and philosophical views.
Vedanta focuses on the study of the Upanishads , and one of its early texts, the Brahma sutras. Regarding yoga or mediation, the Brahma sutras focuses on gaining spiritual knowledge of Brahman , the unchanging absolute reality or Self. One of the earliest and most influential sub-traditions of Vedanta, is Advaita Vedanta , which posits nondualistic monism. It teaches seven stages or bhumis of yogic practice. It was a major reference for medieval Advaita Vedanta yoga scholars and before the 12th century, it was one of the most popular texts on Hindu yoga.
Yoga: Its Origin, History and Development
It also discusses a theory of nadis and prana vital breath , and follows this with instructions on pranayama breath control , pratyahara sense withdrawal , meditation on mantras, meditative visualizations and Kundalini. Samuel states that Tantrism is a contested concept. Many scholars would include the Goraksha Samhita by Gorakshanath of the 11th century in this list.
Laya and Kundalini yoga are closely associated with Hatha yoga but are often presented as being independent approaches. According to Georg Feuerstein , Laya yoga yoga of dissolution or merging "makes meditative absorption laya its focus. The laya-yogin seeks to transcend all memory traces and sensory experiences by dissolving the microcosm, the mind, in the transcendental Self-Consciousness. The practice of awakening the coiled energy in the body is sometimes specifically called Kundalini yoga.
It is based on Indian theories of the subtle body and uses various pranayamas breath techniques and mudras bodily techniques to awaken the energy known as kundalini the coiled one or shakti. In various Shaiva and Shakta traditions of yoga and tantra, yogic techniques or yuktis are used to unite kundalini-shakti , the divine conscious force or energy, with Shiva , universal consciousness.
Some Christians integrate yoga and other aspects of Eastern spirituality with prayer and meditation. This has been attributed to a desire to experience God in a more complete way. On the contrary, one can take from them what is useful so long as the Christian conception of prayer, its logic and requirements are never obscured. It is within the context of all of this that these bits and pieces should be taken up and expressed anew. In and , the Vatican issued two documents: Aspects of Christian meditation and " A Christian reflection on the New Age ," that were mostly critical of eastern and New Age practices.
The document was published as a page handbook detailing the Vatican's position. Another view holds that Christian meditation can lead to religious pluralism. This is held by an interdenominational association of Christians that practice it. In the early 11th century, the Persian scholar Al Biruni visited India, lived with Hindus for 16 years, and with their help translated several significant Sanskrit works into Arabic and Persian languages. One of these was Patanjali's Yogasutras. Later, in the 16th century, the hath yoga text Amritakunda was translated into Arabic and then Persian.
Minority Islamic sects such as the mystic Sufi movement, particularly in South Asia, adopted Indian yoga practises, including postures and breath control. Malaysia's top Islamic body in passed a fatwa , prohibiting Muslims from practicing yoga, saying it had elements of Hinduism and that its practice was blasphemy , therefore haraam.
In , the Council of Ulemas, an Islamic body in Indonesia, passed a fatwa banning yoga on the grounds that it contains Hindu elements. In Iran, as of May , according to its Yoga Association, there were approximately yoga centres in the country, a quarter of them in the capital Tehran , where groups can often be seen practising in parks. This has been met by opposition among conservatives.
His comments were made in the context of reiki and yoga possibly being a form of proselytization at the expense of Islam. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Male and female yogis from 17th- and 18th-century India. Main traditions. Vaishnavism Shaivism Shaktism Smartism. Rites of passage. Philosophical schools. Gurus, saints, philosophers. Other texts. Text classification. Other topics. Main article: Indus Valley Civilization. Further information: Vedic period. Main article: Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. Main article: Yoga Yajnavalkya. Main article: Jainism. Main article: Bhakti Yoga.
Main article: Hatha yoga. Main article: Modern yoga. Main article: Yoga philosophy. Main article: Jain meditation. Main article: Tantra. Hinduism portal India portal. The ideology of asceticism and renunciation seems, at first, discontinuous with the brahmanical ideology of the affirmation of social obligations and the performance of public and domestic rituals. Indeed, there has been some debate as to whether asceticism and its ideas of retributive action, reincarnation and spiritual liberation, might not have originated outside the orthodox vedic sphere, or even outside Aryan culture: that a divergent historical origin might account for the apparent contradiction within 'Hinduism' between the world affirmation of the householder and the world negation of the renouncer.
However, this dichotomization is too simplistic, for continuities can undoubtedly be found between renunciation and vedic Brahmanism, while elements from non-Brahmanical, Sramana traditions also played an important part in the formation of the renunciate ideal. Indeed there are continuities between vedic Brahmanism and Buddhism, and it has been argued that the Buddha sought to return to the ideals of a vedic society which he saw as being eroded in his own day. Great is the praise of Savitri, the creating godhead. The use by Vedic priests of ascetic practices in their preparations for the performance of the sacrifice might be precursor to Yoga.
A close reading of this text suggests that it was closely related to a tradition of early Brahminic contemplation. But we also know that even this is problematic In fact, it is not until the time of the commentaries of Buddhaghosa, Dhammapala, and others — that is to say, the fifth to sixth centuries CE — that we can know anything definite about the actual contents of [the Pali] canon. Wezler has proposed that the Yoga related text may have been inserted into this Sutra later, among other things; however, Bronkhorst finds much to disagree on with Wezler.
Further process of the systematization of Yoga as a path to the ultimate mystic goal is obvious in subsequent Yoga Upanishads and the culmination of this endeavour is represented by Patanjali's codification of this path into a system of the eightfold Yoga. At the climax of such contemplation the mental eye … shifts its focus to the unconditioned state, Nibbana Sariputta tells Ven.
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An Introduction to Yoga by Annie Besant
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