Yoga means stillness of mind and freedom from oscillations and various mental processes. — Patanjali
I’m experiencing the benefits yoga every day. The practice helps me to expand my consciousness. It helps me stay grounded and strong. Here is a list of my ten favorite quotes of the great masters.
#1: “Yoga is the practice of undisturbed calmness of mind. It is attained by cultivating friendliness toward the happy, compassion for the unhappy, delight in the virtuous, and indifference toward the wicked. ” ~ Patanjali
#2: “When the breath wanders the mind also is unsteady. But when the breath is calmed the mind too will be still, and the yogi achieves a healthy and long life. Therefore, one should learn to understand the quality of the breath.” ~ Hatha Yoga Pradipika
#3: “Yoga is not possible, for the one who eats too much, or who does not eat at all; who sleeps too much, or who keeps awake. ” ~ Krishna in Bhagavad Gita
4#: ”The rhythm of the body, the melody of the mind & the harmony of the soul create the symphony of life.” ~ B.K.S. Iyengar
5#: “Yoga is not a religion. It is a science, science of well-being, science of youthfulness, science of integrating body, mind and soul. Yoga is more about the exploration and discovery of the subtle energies of life.” ~ Amit Ray
6#: “Inhale, and God approaches you. Hold the inhalation, and God remains with you. Exhale, and you approach God. Hold the exhalation, and surrender to God.” ~ Krishnamacharya
7#: “Yoga is essentially a practice for your soul, working through the medium of your body.” ~Tara Fraser
8#: “Yoga is the perfect opportunity to be curious about who you are.” – Jason Crandell
9# “Under the bright sun, many of us are gathered together with different languages, different styles of dress, even different faiths. However, all of us are the same in being humans, and we all uniquely have the thought of “I,” and we´re all the same in wanting happines.” ~ Dalai Lama
10#: “Be a lamp unto yourself. Work out your liberation with diligence.” ~ Buddha
The concepts and methods of harmonizing body, mind, and spirit introduced centuries ago by Patanjali have been adopted by scientists, religious and spiritual leaders, and experts in the field of physical and mental health, as well as by the public at large. The concept of observing the breath and the tingling sensations of the body have been adopted by Gautam Buddha. Kriya yoga and vipassana are the two wings of a spiritual journey. If one is weak you cannot fly comfortably. God realization and stillness of mind both are important.
Buddha said “It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles. Then the victory is yours. It cannot be taken from you, not by angels or by demons, heaven or hell. “ Vipassana is the art of conquering yourself.
Paramahansa Yoganandanin the writer of the spiritual classic,“Autobiography of a Yogi”, said “Meditation is the science of God‑realization. It is the most practical science in the world. Most people would want to meditate if they understood its value and experienced its beneficial effects. The ultimate object of meditation is to attain conscious awareness of God, and the soul’s eternal oneness with Him. “
In the teachings of the Zen masters we observed “What we call the body and mind in the Buddha Way is grass, trees and wall rubble; it is wind, rain, water and fire.”
Himalayan spiritual master Amit Ray of Uttarkashi in his book, “Yoga and Vipassana: An Integrated Life Style” said “There are three aspects in yoga, the first one is keeping the body and mind in harmony and healthy. The second one is stilling the mind and the third one is realising the inner sprit. Yoga deals with the first aspect of life. Vipassan is more about the stilling the mind and for the third one you need your own inner grace.”
Ramana Maharshi the master of yoga through self-inquiry mentioned that “self-inquiry is certainly not an empty formula and it is more than the repetition of any mantra. If the inquiry `Who am I?’ were a mere mental Questioning, it would not be of much value. The very purpose of self-inquiry is to focus the entire mind at its source. It is not, therefore, a case of one `I’ searching for another `I’. Much less is self-inquiry an empty formula, for it involves an intense activity of the entire mind to keep it steadily poised in pure Self-awareness.” Self inquiry is the art of knowing yourself.
Sri Aurobindo tried to amalgamate the older religions and said “Eevolution is the method by which it liberates itself; consciousness appears in what seems to be inconscient, and once having appeared is self-impelled to grow higher and higher and at the same time to enlarge and develop towards a greater and greater perfection. Life is the first step of this release of consciousness; mind is the second; but the evolution does not finish with mind, it awaits a release into something greater, a consciousness which is spiritual and supramental. The next step of the evolution must be towards the development of Super-mind and Spirit as the dominant power in the conscious being. For only then will the involved Divinity in things release itself entirely and it become possible for life to manifest perfection.”
Great yogi Ramakrishna Paramhansa taught ceaselessly for fifteen years the basic truths of all religion through parables, metaphors, songs and by his own life. He said “There are pearls in the deep sea, but you must hazard all perils to get them. If you fail to get at them by a single dive, do not conclude that the sea is without them. Dive again and again, and you are sure to be rewarded in the end. So also in the quest for the Lord, if your first attempt to see Him proves fruitless, do not lose heart. Persevere in the attempt, and you are sure to realize Him at last.”