To survive is to eke out an existence. We can accept this in times of disaster or crisis. However, when humans first gathered into communities they wanted a little more than mere survival. As humans advanced they began to chronicle the art of living into different systems. One of these ancient systems has evolved to the point of global popularity and it has many offshoots in health maintenance systems, physical therapy, preventative medicine, martial arts and modern exercise systems.
Yoga and the Art of Living
Yoga originated in ancient India as a way of artful living. Promoting peace in the individual and the community, the philosophy defined a set of principles leading to harmony and spiritual wellbeing. Those principles still work in our modern world, and we need them as badly as ever.
While the study of Yoga is not as exact as it was in the ashrams of early Asia, it is now available to people around the world, and everyone can benefit. Yogic philosophy shares common truths with all of the world’s great teachings, which leads some to believe that many of today’s universal laws of morality stem to some degree from Yogic philosophy
Yoga Increases Quality of Life
• Whether it is at work or at home, one of our greatest stressors is feeling that we have no control over our lives. Yoga teaches us to take responsibility for our own emotions, regardless of the circumstances in which we find ourselves.
• Conflict arises out of fear and ignorance. The “Yoga Sutras” stress truth, non-violence, service, self-study, and spirituality. Yoga training gives us peace of mind and makes us more peaceful.
• Anxiety is a major factor in all kinds of disease. Yoga targets the emotional and spiritual components of illness as well as providing physical exercise that encourages good health.
• When we get upset or tired, our breathing becomes fast and shallow. Yogic breathing, which is slow and deep, calms the body by slowing down the nervous system, sending fresh oxygen to the blood and relieving fatigue.
• Asanas are good for the body, but they also act as moving meditations. Not only do we practice humility and perseverance when we learn new poses, but we also gain self-confidence and prepare ourselves for meditation.
• Yogic sleep, the deeply relaxing meditation that follows postures, restores us mentally, emotionally, and physically. It also strengthens our intuition and deepens our spiritual connection with the universe.
It’s hard for us to have successful relationships when our muscles are tense, our minds are working overtimes, and our bodies are exhausted. The art of living a happy life requires a spiritual practice. For many people, Yoga is the answer.
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