According to statistics generated by the United States Census Bureau, the number of people practicing yoga consistently increased by ten million people in 30 years.
More and more people around the world continue to ask themselves “what is yoga” and why is it such a big deal to so many?
First of all, notice how quality, in many different arenas, stick around longer and the rest fades out. If you take a look at music, for example, witness how some of the older music that people still listen to is really good, at least to them. Yes, there are different categories, but within those categories, there are common best musicians. Categorically speaking we all have different tastes, but there is a certain quality and a deep attunement to the music that continues to live. People get into those different, deep and powerful music expressions, and it lights them up, usually in the way that suits there state of being.
On a similar note, there have been many health and spiritual practices over the last several thousand years. Some of them have worked, some of them not. Many faded out due to intellectual and spiritual evolution as well as other forms of change. The vast art and mastered science of yoga has been one that has continued to stay for thousands of years.
To understand yoga better, we should back up several thousand years. Yoga and its terminology have derived from Sanskrit. Like many languages Sanskrit words, have meaning. There are very significant and powerful aspects of the Sanskrit language, however, this is an introduction to yoga, so we will break you in softy and slowly and a bit about Sanskrit later.
Yoga means “union” in Sanskrit. Raja Yoga means “Royal Union”. Yoga is a shortened term for Hatha Yoga or other aspects of Raja Yoga.
Let’s stay with Raja Yoga for now. Raja Yoga is a way of life composed of practices that help us evolve.
We’re just getting going.