Many yoga students look to Patanjali as the father of yoga - however Patanjali was a sage who compiled the Yoga Sutras and took from various ideas on Yoga that had existed before such as the Ashtanga or eight limbed path. The aim of these sutras is not to show how to do the asanas correctly or the best way to sit for a meditation. Although a Karma yogi may practice techniques such as the asanas, breathing practices, and meditations, the primary focus of their spiritual practice is service and actions with the focus of selflessness and humbleness.

For me personally, when I was newly ordained, I mostly practised Mindfulness of Breathing and reflection on death as basic practices. A human being may be partitioned into four - body, Prana(breath), mind, and bliss(soul). In practice, this type of yoga is characterized by the use of belts, straps, sandbags, benches and blocks to aid in performing 200 asanas (postures) and creating body alignment.

Remember that Asana (posture) practice is the third of the eight limbs of Yoga. Samadhi occurs when the proper conditions have been set allowing the mind to be free from disturbances so that it can know true reality. Samadhi is the state of total concentration of mind on true self.

By practice of the limbs of Yoga, impurities dwindle away and there dawns the light of wisdom, leading to discriminative discernment. According to Patanjali, this consists of eight limbs, known as 'The Eight Limbs of Yoga'. Absorption concentration (appanasamadhi): The total immersion of the mind on its meditation of object and stabilization of all four jhanas.

Once a considerable understanding of these two practices is attained, more advanced techniques including Shatkarmas (body cleansing), Pranayamas (nadhi cleansing), Mudras (energy channeling), Bundhas (energy locks), and other techniques which lead towards Samadhi (self-realization) can be practiced.

To experience the Self or 'That' meditation practices potentially offer practitioners a way of experiencing, understanding, trusting and knowing. For Yoga one should choose a comfortable posture by which one may concentrate mind on true self. Yoga nidra, meaning psychic sleep, is a practice that uses body awareness to withdraw from the external world and enter into the subconscious and unconscious realms of the psyche.

Yoga Sutras can be utilized like any instructional Vishnu book, or industry manual ensuring that the genuine educator within is to be woken up through their own practice. In Sukhasana when the body is kept motionless for half an hour, Prana and mind become motionless.
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