This blog includes reflections, creative work and resources. It is a glimpse of one person's journey within the realm of inquiry, experience with the human body and spirit. Look for ideas rather than answers. No claims are made. Perfection is not implied. I write as inspired to do so. Take what works for you, leave the rest. If you share anything from this blog, either verbally or in writing, please do your best to give credit where credit is due. Thank you for visiting.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Yama & Niyama Fall In The Center

I have written that one can enter onto any limb of yoga.  This notion is not my own as I've heard it from others.  This post is to explore that statement.  There's nothing wrong with questioning!  Please post a comment if you have something to share from your experience.

In approaching the 8 limbs of yoga, reading and understand the lead-up in the yoga sutras is helpful.  The first 28 verses present how to embrace the yogic system.  The 8 limbs fall in the center of the text.  A foundation of understanding is helpful...  AND... isn't it just fine to approach yoga any way one is introduced to the practice?  In the case of America today, most likely through asana initially?  

As mentioned previously, I am studying Soul Without Shame: A Guide To Liberating Yourself From The Judge Within by Byron Brown.  Interestingly, about mid-way through the book on page 158, he mentions something the inner judge does which is akin to Yama and Niyama:  "... two broad categories: those designed to maintain control over "bad" or unacceptable parts of the self and those designed to move you toward your ideal of what a good person should be."  Yama are things to abstain from; Niyama are observances to move toward, personal conduct in particular.  Now, just as Patanjali did in the yoga sutras, quite a bit of lead-up has been provided by Brown on to how to go about approaching these aspects of human experience. 

So, again, please comment if you have insight into the notion of how to approach yogic philosophy as structured by the 8 limbs.  I'm not one for dogma and yet, will continue to reflect since my personality is one that appreciates efficiency. 

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