The philosophy of yoga is encapsulated in ancient scriptures such as The Vedas, The Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita and the Yoga Sutras. They were written in Sanskrit which is the oldest known language.
Yoga is not a religion, it’s a philosophy and a way of life. We can translate what we learn from Yoga according to our own background, mind, culture and religion.
The word Yoga means ”to unite” and it comes from the Sanskrit word ”Yoke”. Hatha yoga (which is the yoga mostly practiced in the west), means sun and moon – or opposites, like hot and cold, light and dark, male and female, active and passive. Hatha is the union of opposites in order to reach balance. Hatha Yoga helps to harmonize and integrate these two polar energies of the universe to create physical, mental, emotional and spiritual balance and unity within.
In yogic philosophy the body is regarded as the vehicle of the soul and gateway to the inner temple of the divine. It recognises the body and bodily existence as a wonderful instrument through which the expansion of awareness and freedom of energy can be realised and united.
Yoga postures (asanas) have evolved over many centuries. Apart from cultivating physical beauty (kanti) due to enhanced pranic flow (life energy) through the body, asanas help to clear the mind and assist in the restoration of mental and physical balance, health, vitality and well being.