The meaning of all the sutras can
be summed up in one sentence –
be compassionate to everyone,
particularly those you don’t
want to be compassionate
to. ~ Anon

At Kumbhak Yoga we practice yoga to reach our true potential. Yoga is a holistic system that offers much more than asana (poses). We believe you do not have to be in a yoga pose to be “doing yoga”. Practicing yoga helps us cultivate a higher consciousness, and deeper awareness of ourselves, of others, of our environment, and of our relationships. We learn to look at life through the lens of yoga. If we think twice about losing our temper, if we breathe deeply before reacting, if we give generously without thought of gain, if we recycle, we’re practicing yoga. Yoga becomes a way of living life.

The Yoga Sutra, one of the seminal works on yoga, was compiled by the Indian sage, Patanjali around 200 CE. In it he mentions asana only a handful of times. He sets out what he called the Eight Limbs of Yoga providing a moral and ethical framework on which to build our lives. Asana is just one of the Limbs.

The Eight Limbs of Yoga as compiled by Patanjali

Yamas: help you shape your attitude towards others, and your environment.
Ahimsa: doing no harm to others and your Self
Satya: honesty in thought and deed
Asteya: non-stealing, in all its forms
Bramacharya: moving toward self-control
Aparigraha: non-possessiveness, freedom from greed
Niyamas: help you shape your attitude toward yourself.
Sauca: cleanliness, both inner and outer
Santosha: contentment
Tapas: keeping the body in good condition
Svadhyaya: the study of texts, and of one's self
Isvarapranidhama: living with awareness
Asanas: physical poses, or postures
Pranayama: breathwork
Pratyahara: harnessing of the senses
Dharana: concentration
Dhyana: meditation
Samadhi: enlightenment

“...asanas are not exercises, they
are poses: sacred geometries for awakening, and becoming aware
of energy.” ~ Caroline Muir

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