“A wonderful translation, full of contemporary insight yet luminous with eternal truth.”—Jacob Needleman The Yoga Sutras were cast in their present form in India around the third century b.c. Yoga is from the Sanskrit root meaning “union,” and a sutra is a thread or aphoristic verse. The basic questions “Who am I?” “Where am I going?” “What is the purpose of life?” are asked by each new generation, and Patanjali’s answers form one of the oldest and most vibrant spiritual texts in the world. He explains what yoga is, how it works, and exactly how to purify the mind and let it settle into absolute stillness. This stillness is our own Self. It is the indispensable ground for Enlightenment, which is the ultimate goal of all our aspirations. Alistair Shearer’s lucid introduction and superb translation, fully preserving Patanjali’s jewel-like style, bring these ancient but vital teachings to those who seek the path of self-knowledge today. Bell Tower’s series, Sacred Teachings, offers essential spiritual classics from all traditions. May each book become a trusted companion on the way of truth, encouraging readers to study the wisdom of the ages and put it into practice each day. From the Hardcover edition.
the yoga sutras of patanjali
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The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali discuss the philosophy on which yogic practice is based. It is an ancient and enormously influential piece of work, still relevant today. The Sanskrit word "yoga" describes the suspension of thoughts and feelings experienced during practice, and "sutra" is a thread on which beads - or in this case aphorisms - are strung. The work is sometimes referred to in English as The Yoga Aphorisms.
Providing an explanation of the practical and philosophical foundations of Raja Yoga, The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali is arguably the most important text on Yogic philosophy. The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali is widely regarded as the most authoritative text on yoga. It comprises a collection of 196 Indian sutras (“threads” – as sutra translates from Sanskrit) written 1,700 years ago. These threads or aphorisms were compiled by the Indian sage Patañjali and offer guidelines for living a meaningful and purposeful life. The book is organized into four parts and provides descriptions of the eight limbs of yoga, such as pranayama and asana. The translated text is presented alongside a clear and insightful commentary by Swami Vivekananda, which makes them more accessible to the modern reader and yoga practitioner. His message of universal brotherhood and self-awakening remains relevant today, especially in the current backdrop of widespread political turmoil around the world.
This is an English rendering of the classical text on yoga and meditations that maintains the poetic forms of the sutras. Patanjali is to Yoga what Buddha is to Buddhism. His sutras- scriptural narratives sometimes defined as literally "the path to transcendence"- are a darshan, or philosophical worldview and method to aid the awakening of self-realization. Patanjali reveals a set of landmarks that enable practitioners to lift the veils and study the hidden self, eventually following this path to enlightenment.
The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are in themselves exceedingly brief, yet they contain the essence of practical wisdom, set forth in admirable order and detail. The theme, if the present interpreter be right, is the great regeneration, the birth of the spiritual from the psychical man: the same theme which Paul so wisely and eloquently set forth in writing to his disciples in Corinth, the theme of all mystics in all lands. We think of ourselves as living a purely physical life, in these material bodies of ours. In reality, we have gone far indeed from pure physical life; for ages, our life has been psychical, we have been centred and immersed in the psychic nature. Some of the schools of India say that the psychic nature is, as it were, a looking-glass, wherein are mirrored the things seen by the physical eyes, and heard by the physical ears. But this is a magic mirror; the images remain, and take a certain life of their own. Thus within the psychic realm of our life there grows up an imaged world wherein we dwell; a world of the images of things seen and heard, and therefore a world of memories; a world also of hopes and desires, of fears and regrets. Mental life grows up among these images, built on a measuring and comparing, on the massing of images together into general ideas; on the abstraction of new notions and images from these; till a new world is built up within, full of desires and hates, ambition, envy, longing, speculation, curiosity, self-will, self-interest. The teaching of the East is, that all these are true powers overlaid by false desires; that though in manifestation psychical, they are in essence spiritual; that the psychical man is the veil and prophecy of the spiritual man.
Illustrated guide to learning the Yoga philosophy and psychology as described in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
Note that due to the limitations of some ereading devices not all diacritical marks can be shown. BKS Iyengar’s translation and commentary on these ancient yoga sutras has been described as the “bible” of yoga. This edition contains an introduction by BKS Iyengar, as well as a foreword by Godfrey Devereux, author of Dynamic Yoga.
Providing a complete manual for the study and practice of Raja Yoga--the path of concentration and meditation--a new deluxe printing of a collection of timeless teachings is a treasure to be read and referred to again and again by seekers treading the spiritual path. Reprint.
The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali are Indian sūtras (aphorisms) that constitute the foundational text of yoga. In medieval times, yoga was cast as one of the six orthodox āstika schools of Hindu philosophy. The Yoga Sutras form the theoretical and philosophical basis of Rāja Yoga, and are considered to be the most organized and complete definition of that discipline. The Sutras not only provide yoga with a thorough and consistent philosophical basis, they also clarify many important esoteric concepts which are common to all traditions of Indian thought, such as karma.