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Really, what is Yoga?

"Yoga" is a word from Sanskrit, the original literary and philosophical language of India. The word derives from the root yuj, which has two traditional, complementary meanings: 1. "to bring two things together, to meet, to unite." 2. "to converge the mind". Sounds complicated right? One way to look at it, is if you're driving a car, you're turning the steering wheel, your foot pedalling, yet your focus stays on the environment surrounding you. 'Various movements come together and converging with our attention" (T.K.V. Desikachar et al). So you might name it Yoga, but you are already doing it. To many people, yoga is a form of exercise of physical activity, twisting and bending into strange shapes. Yogis are the ones wear tight pants or some new age hippies wearing linen baggy shirts. Why not? They may all be manifestation and expression of Yoga, personalised by individuals. In fact, we've all done some yoga one way or another. When you are jogging, or walking on a evening, emptying your mind and gone into a steady, meditative state, or if you've ever experienced a simple bliss moment, like when you saw the sunrise and that moment when the chatter in your mind stops, and you're 100% in the moment, even for a blink of an eye, guess what - you've yogaed!


It's not that complicated after all. It's a philosophy, a journey that all of us are on. There are many ways to get there, the physical practice and breathing control is one form called Hatha, devotion, is another, called Bhakti. If you've ever ran after a bus and got on it finally, softy whispered to yourself "Thank God" or "Lucky!", well, my friend, that's devotion. There's nothing religions about it, you don't have to name the God, you just need to acknowledge there are greater power than ourselves, and acknowledge we are part of the universe as one. It's actually a great feeling to be part of the 'universian' community, and very humbling because we realise we are soooo tinyl, just a spec of dust.



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