Yoga Chakra - Hatha Yoga Complements Karma Yoga (Part-5)
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Yoga Chakra - Hatha Yoga Complements Karma Yoga (Part-5)

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Item Code: NAZ544
Author: Swami Niranajanananda Saraswati
Publisher: Yoga Publications Trust
Language: English
Edition: 2017
ISBN: 9789384753610
Pages: 74 (4 Color Illustrations)
Other Details: 8.50 X 5.50 inch
Weight 120 gm
Back of the Book
From 19th to 23rd December 2016, Swami Niranjananda gave a series of satsangs during the Yoga Chakra program held at Ganga Darshan Vishwa Yogapeeth. The program was part of the ongoing process to develop the next chapter of yoga where the focus is on connecting with yoga vidya, the essence of yogic knowledge, and exploring the deeper dimensions of yoga.

The theme of the satsangs was karma yoga and hatha yoga, two of the spokes in the six-spoked yoga chakra, the wheel of yoga.

Swamiji explained how hatha yoga and karma yoga complement each other in the yoga chakra, and have parallel goal, ultimately taking the sadhaka to the state where there is an experience of lightness-in the body, mind, and in every action.

Swamiji carried every participant to the very core of the subject so that new vistas opened up on a familiar landscape. Through practical examples he explained the path to reach the goals of karma yoga, so that one is able to use karma for conscious evolution and every action becomes an opportunity to learn and grow, to recognize one’s dharma, to give one’s best, to experience the higher essence and to live in dedication and happiness.

The purpose of the Yoga Chakra Series is to expound the subject of yoga as Sri Swami Satyananda maintained it, as the ideal combination for this modern age. The first Yoga Chakra Series looked into the history of yoga: the early days of yoga, the middle days of yoga and the modern days of yoga, and the structuring of yoga by Sri Swamiji as hatha yoga, raja yoga, kriya yoga - which form the external sadhana component; and karma yoga, bhakti yoga and jnana yoga - which are the expressions of yogic life. These six yogas form the yoga chakra, the wheel of yoga, and represent the yogic vision of Sri Swamiji.

The teachings of Yoga Chakra are derived from Sri Swamiji's teachings, his satsangs to a few, rather than from his public teachings, the yoga classes for the masses. When he gave classes, they would be as per the syllabus, including asana, pranayama, and the associated theories. However, the real essence of yoga would be conveyed in his satsangs. The real vision of yoga would be seen in his satsangs. The way he spoke about the six yogas, starting with hatha yoga to raja yoga to kriya yoga, and then karma yoga, bhakti yoga and jnana yoga, indicates the sequence he was following, right from the early days of the Bihar School of Yoga.

Turning the pages of the memories of his satsangs, it is possible to see how a yogi visualizes yoga and the effectiveness of yoga in modern lifestyle. Sri Swamiji imparted an awareness of yoga not from the perspective of 'I am learning asana, 1 am learning relaxation, 1 am learning concentration'; he taught us the wisdom of the ancient seers and its relevance in the reality of today. Therefore, this Yoga Chakra will be a mix of both the classical and the modern perspectives and the theme will be hatha yoga and karma yoga. These two yogas complement each other. They are the stepping stones into Sri Swamiji's vision of the yoga chakra.

Hatha yoga and karma yoga

Hatha yoga is the physical aspect of yoga when compared to raja yoga or kriya yoga. Karma yoga too is physical when compared to bhakti yoga or jnana yoga. Thus, hatha yoga and karma yoga are what can be perfected and what can be expressed through the agency of the senses: perfection of hath a yoga and expression of karma yoga.

The senses constitute the first-level experience of the gross material world. All your life, the information that you receive is from the senses. The senses are not just five, as is generally believed. There are five senses of perception or cognition, five senses of expression or action, and the mind is also considered a sense organ, according to Sri Krishna.

Therefore, in total eleven senses become the medium through which you experience life, express in life, recognize life, identify life as either good or bad, comfortable or uncomfortable, and so on. All your assessments, of yourself, your environment, your world are based on the information given by the senses. Therefore, it is the senses that have to be controlled and, regulated first, which is achieved through hatha yoga and karma yoga.

Book's Contents and Sample Pages

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