Within Hinduism there are six major schools of thought: Samkhya, Nyaya, Vaisheshika, Mimamsa, Vendanta, and Yoga. Each one is inspired by the holy Vedas and other Hindu concepts.
Yoga, from the Sanskrit word 'yuj' means to unite. It is usually described in Hindu texts as a way to control the senses and the mind. The most famous Hindu text describing yoga is the Bhavad Ghita, which dates all the way back to the 6th - 3rd centuries BCE. In it, Krishna describes 4 types of yoga:
The ultimate goal of each is to achieve Moksha, or unity with God and escape from the cycle of birth and death. No single person is born saved, though the Divine resides within all people. All people, regardless of race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation, have the ability to achieve Moksha. Moksha can be attainted through a person's actions, words, and thoughts, as they...
Hi, my name is Lucy and I have recently moved to beautiful Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. I heard all about Avani’s yoga center AmaSer, so I decided to come along to one of her Yin & Restore classes on a Tuesday afternoon. The class started just before the sun was beginning to set and the afternoon was turning to dusk. Here are five things I learnt about yoga!
I would not exactly class myself as a Yogi. I was a little nervous before going to class. What if I obviously stuck out as a rookie, what if I could not hold a posture? Avani made me feel welcome as soon as I entered the class. She begun by explaining the purpose of the class and demonstrated every pose by including a number of variations to make sure you were comfortable and could really connect with how you held your body – without hurting yourself! It was easy to follow and made me feel like I was being cared for, rather than judged.
Everything contains both yin and yang energy. We have all seen the popular swirling black & white “yin-yang” icon, which symbolizes the importance of balance and harmony between light and dark, hot and cold, masculine and feminine etc. We are constantly in a state of both yin and yang, however, we can place ourselves in states where one or the other is dominant. Often times in our hectic daily lives, Yang energy dominates our bodies and minds. In order to remain balanced, increasing Yin in our lives can be highly beneficial.
Yang energy is masculine, fiery, dominating, aggressive, hard, and hot. It represents fast and loud, movement and light, aggression and strength. This is the energy that takes over when we are in an intense hot yoga class, slipping in sweat with a strong focused mind. We feel the internal fire building with heart racing and muscles contracted, burning up all of our impurities. On the opposite end of the spectrum is Yin energy. This...