The Eight limbs of Yoga: Ashtanga, Asanas, Pranayama, Dhyana, Samadhi

The eight limbs of yoga, in fact, cover a complete chakra of living our lives well. If you follow these 8 pillars, called the Ashtanga, the quality of wellbeing gets to a higher level:

1. Yamas: These define the moral values of interaction. They are Ahimsa (non-violence), Satya (Truthfulness), Asteya (non-stealing), Brahmacharya in nature (restrain from undue Lust), Aparigraha (non-possessiveness).

2. Niyamas: These define the habits that one should have:

Shaucha (purity of body, mind, and speech), Santosha (contentment), Tapas (Persistence), Svadhyaya (self-study), Ishvarapranidhana (Contemplation of the unchanging reality)

3. Asana: Various postures to practice to attain physical strength and stability

4. Pranayama: Practice to gain control of breath

5. Pratyahara: Practice to detach from the worldly objects. This phase is a transition from external forms of Yoga to the internal mind and soul.

6. Dharana: Bringing the concentration, the focus of the mind, and holding and maintain it without drifting from one thought to others.

7. Dhyana: Gaining an uninterrupted train of thought, cognition, and awareness on the topic of Dharana.

8. Samadhi: The ultimate state of meditation. The yogi or yogin is in such a state of concentration that they are not able to distinguish between meditation and the thought of meditation. Everything is oneness.

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Dr Apurva Tamhane

Wellness Practitioner and Yogi

Dr Ayush Bhatia

Homeopathy Physician and Chinese Medicine Practitioner

Dr Prachi Gaikwad

Veterinary Doctor and Holistic Care Enthusiast