What is Yoga?
The origin of the word ‘Yoga’ is from Sanskrit word which means “to join”, taken from the Sanskrit word root “Yuj”. Basically it means to join physically, mentally and spiritually. “So basically yoga is to build strength, peace and harmony in both the mind and body.
Why is yoga getting so popular these days?
There are so many reasons why yoga becoming popular these days. First of all a major reason for the popularity of yoga is the stressful life of the people, due to the advancement in technology because yoga gives you a peaceful mind and body, Not any kind of fancy or fictional things that you may think, but tells you the real facts. Your mind is too deceptive; every day it says something different, but if you know how to read the body, it tells you everything the way it is in, your past, present and future. That is why yoga starts with the body.
Yoga has survived over 15,000 years without any kind of change and enforcement, because nowhere in history of human kind ever happened that someone put a sword to anyone’s neck and forced him/her, “You must do yoga.” So we can say that it survived because it really gives a long time peaceful effect on our body and mind.
The word yoga first of all appeared in Rig Veda around 1500 BC, and after that it was again found in Atharva Veda around 1200-1000 BC where the method of breathing control in yoga was found so we cannot say when exactly yoga was started because the Vedas were passed orally from one period to another and the written books came much later, But we can surely say that the practice of yoga started much earlier in our ancient civilizations.
History of Yoga
Pre-Vedic and Vedic Period ( Before 3000 BC)
The practice of yoga started in Vedic period, In the Indus Saraswati civilization around 2700 BC many seals and fossils were found with figures practicing different yoga poses and sadhanas.
Pre-Classical Period (Around 500 BC)
We see this period as the era of Upanishads, and these Upanishads explained the hidden meaning of Vedas. It says that the meditation and mantra recitation is the goal of achieving enlightenment. Out of 108 Upanishads 20 is about yoga.
Classical Period (500 BC to 800 AD)
Classical Period yoga is the traditional system yoga known as Ashtanga yoga mentioned by Patanjali, Who is know as the father of modern yoga.
These are some events that happened during classical period:-
A) The period of Lord Mahavira and Lord Buddha they dealt the practice of meditation and different posture to attain enlightenment.
B) The Bhagavad Gita also came in this time, this is the book which says about the Lord Krishna and Prince Arjun, Here Krishna dealt with the concept of Dharma, Karma and Bhakti Yoga.
C) Some parts of Mahabharata about 300-200 BC also deals about Yoga like separation of self from matter.
D) Maharshi Patanjali is known as the father of Yoga, he is also from this era.
Post Classical Period(800 AD to 1700 AD)
In this era Adi Shankaracharya the great philosopher developed the Raja Yoga and Jnana Yoga. As with the help of these yoga he teach the technique of meditation and way to achieve Nirvana or liberation. Most of the asanas we practice today are Hatha Yoga
Modern Period (1700 AD to 1900 AD)
Well in this era the focus of yoga is mainly on physical well-being, and the credit of spreading it in western societies goes to Swami Vivekananda.
So, yoga took a long journey and it is still practicing in 21st century in that form only.
What is the current state of yoga world wide?
Now in todays scenario yoga is very famous not only in India but also across the world the main reason is now a days young or old — are stressed like never before. People are anxious and wants to apply whatever methods they employ to handle their internal turmoil, like dancing, going for a drive or climbing a mountain, has worked to some extent, but all these things not able to give them the peace they want so looking towards yoga is a natural progression.
One of the main reason for yoga’s growing popularity, because of the large-scale transmission of education. As the intellect becomes stronger, people look for logical solutions. The more logical they become, the more they become dependent on science, and the outcome of science is technology.
These are the little bit brief about the origin of Yoga that from where it was started and spread across the world from ancient period to modern days.
In ancient time it is used for treatment of diseases, physical fitness as well as cleanliness and hygiene.
Yoga helps to reduce stress and increase concentration level. It does not only improve your physical body but also maintains inner peace and keeps you calm and compose, It is not just one day practice but needs a lot of commitment and discipline.