About Ashtanga Yoga And It’s Benefits

Ashtanga Yoga is the eight folded path of yoga in ancient yogic tradition. Sage Patanjali, wrote a text for this yoga, it is called as “Yoga Sutra”.  The ancient way of complete form of yogic life is explained in the text of Ashtanga Yoga. It is called as the “eight limbs” – the ways by which one can control the body and mind in order to reach the highest goal in the human life – the realization of one’s self. While this text is advised for the spiritual benefits and aspirants, it is equally valuable for any common man in the society who wants to leave a peaceful life.

Starting with a certain set of rules and principles to be followed by anyone who is inclined towards yoga, this text explains all the ways to be practiced, till the enlightenment through Samadhi. Ashtanga Yoga is the path towards a holistic and meaningful lifestyle.  Ashtanga yoga aims in making the life harmonious and peaceful by developing the mental capacity to face any situation in the life.

Yoga being a buzz word for the modern man is misunderstood as several body postures practiced to keep the body fit and healthy.  But from the spiritual dimension and as per the yogic philosophy, Ashtanga Yoga is essentially the lifestyle to be followed by a yogi who wants to manage the mind and situations tranquilly without losing the self-control.  For any yoga practitioner, it is essential to follow certain fundamental principles based on the ethics and morale.  To get the maximum benefits from the yogic lifestyle, it is essential to follow these principles.

Ashtanga Yoga Poses

Photo By Orion Montoya

These are supplemented with the other practices like the yogasanas, pranayama, meditation and finally the state of Samadhi. When the practice is combined with the principles, physical and mental well-being is achieved. These principles and rules to be followed in the everyday life are explained in the beginning, with its benefits and can be practiced and experienced by anyone, anywhere, anytime.

After the practice of these principles, the practice of yogasanas is advised for the control over the body which naturally leads to the control of the mind.  For any common man, it is a natural feeling to come out from the common diseases, tensions, worries caused by the stressful lifestyle.

The asanas are specifically meant for the relief from the stress and pain accumulated because of the busy life style and tension. The practice of asanas with observation of breath helps to remove the energy blocks in the body by stimulating the nervous system as well as the other organs. It is essential to remove these blocks that creates negative and lazy thoughts in the mind.

Yoga is not only the control over the body, but also over the mind and spirit. These practices purifies the entire nervous system brining a great vitality on the practitioner. This also energizes the dormant cells in the brain by increasing the creativity and talent. Synchronization of breath while performing asanas and retention of breath during pranayama channelizes the pranic energy across the body.

This makes the mind calm and blissful throughout the day. Gradually, the mind is set ready for meditation, to experience the oneness and the self.  At the final stage, Patanjali explains experiencing the state of Samadhi, which is full of bliss and peace. To conclude with, the Stress is one of the reasons why the mind gets clogged with negative thoughts and emotions.

By observing these principles and performing the practice, one can easily increase the awareness, alleviate various diseases caused because of the digestive and stomach disorders. Various types of bending and twisting asanas helps to get rid of the common blood pressure, head ache, constipation, etc. Control and retention of the breath during the asanas brings mental awareness, vitality, and sharpness of the mind.

This automatically leads to pranayama, various breathing techniques to channelize the prana through the nervous system.  It purifies the whole of physiological and psychological systems in a human being.  The practitioner gains asanasiddhi – meaning to sit continuously for hours without any interruption of mental thoughts.   Now, the mind is ready for the meditation practice. By meditating gradually, each physical movement happens with awareness and finally reaches the state of Samadhi.