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History of Yoga

<img src= In reviewing the history of Yoga you will find that it originated in India and is believed to be one of the oldest surviving philosophical systems in the world. Experts bring to light the point that Yoga is not a religion, but a way of living with peace of mind as well as experiencing the health benefits of yoga.

The meaning of the word Yoga:
The word Yoga comes from the Sanskrit word “Yuj,” which means "to control," "to yoke" or "to unite." Yoga is a traditional physical and mental discipline that originated in India.

An Archeological Find
The discovery of several seals at the Indus Valley Civilization sites (dated 3300–1700 B.C.E.) during an archeological excavation shows Yoga's beginnings. The seals depict figures in positions similar to common Yoga or meditation pose. The ceremonial ritual shown on these seals is thought to be the precursor of Yoga.

History of Yoga
Yoga's history is divided into four historic periods.

Vedic Period
The Vedas, the ancient text of India written in Sanskrit, hold the ancient yogic teachings. The practice of Yoga was essential to Vedic ritual and dates back to 900 BC.

Pre-Classical Yoga Period
In this period the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad makes reference to Yoga meditation in 900 BC to 400 BC. The Mahabharata and the Bhagavad-Gita (the oldest Yoga text) in 500 BC and 200 BC also reference the importance of Yoga. Yoga meditation and various Yoga postures are also an important part of Buddhist beliefs and spiritual practice.

Classical Period
Patanjali is believed to be the founder of the formal Yoga philosophy. The aim of Patanjali was to define and normalize the classical Yoga form.

Post Classical Period
Many Yoga schools were developed during the post classical period. The human body was studied along with meditation. Numerous Yoga asanas (postures) were developed and became various forms of yoga, such as Hatha Yoga, Raj Yoga, many others followed.

Modern History of Yoga
Yoga has gained in popularity in recent years, especially due to the health movement and our changing view of the body, mind, and spirit connection has changed. Yoga’s has become a one of the most popular forms of exercise and has been adapted into more modern forms such as power Yoga. It has even been incorporated into physical therapy programs.

Although Yoga is an ancient philosophical system it has given the modern world a new awareness of our body, mind, and spirit connection. So now everyone can embrace the connection and discover the physical, mental, and spiritual health benefits of yoga.

Return to Yoga Benefits from History of Yoga

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