The Purpose Of Yoga

The Purpose Of Yoga

Jeffrey Armstrong is an award-winning author of numerous books on Vedic knowledge including his recent book:

Spiritual Teachings of the Avatar: Ancient Wisdom for a New World

published by Atria/Simon & Schuster. He has been a philosopher, practitioner and teacher of the Vedas for over 40 years.

Listen to Jeffrey as he teaches a class on The Purpose Of Yoga

The Purpose Of Yoga Part 1

The Purpose Of Yoga Part 2

According to Yoga, there are three different aspects to the mind: thinking, feeling and willing. This gives rise to three different approaches to life and three kinds of persons who start out more empowered in one of the modes of perception. In other words, some people see their self and others in terms of power and action, some see in terms of mentation and thought, and some perceive through emotions and feelings. You could say the mottos of these three types are: I do, I think and I feel.

In our body, the three kinds of perception and action live in three different centers or locations. Thinking resides in the third eye area, feeling in the heart center and action in the navel center. You could say that we all see the world filtered through one or more of those centers. If you examine yourself carefully, you will easily observe which of these centers is most active and which is less developed or shut down. Most people have a primary center that they use the most, a secondary that they use less frequently, and that they seldom use or tend to avoid. The center in which we are most comfortable acts as a selective filter through which all our experiences pass. What results is our “point of view” which is necessarily limited to how many of the three pathways of experience are available to us.

Yoga is a method of systematically bringing all three of these mindsets back into direct contact with the source of all existence. But in order to understand the purpose of Yoga, we need a precise definition of self. The Sanskrit term for self is “atma” which means: “an eternal, conscious, joyful and individual spark of Divine Being.” According to Yoga which is part of the Vedas, the library of spiritual knowledge revealed in India, we are all eternal beings who have come to a place called the material world. We came here to collect experience about this aspect of Divinity, but then, in the process, got lost in repeated birth and death, forgetting our true nature. The purpose of Yoga is to restore our original nature.

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The Purpose Of Yoga

Namaste and may you follow your bliss,

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