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 Yamas & Niyamas - Restraints & Observances
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AYPforum

351 Posts

Posted - Jul 19 2005 :  11:37:03 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Message
All members are encouraged to create new and original topics in the AYP forums. There is no limit on the number of topics that can be put here.

It has been decided to keep the forum introductory posts by Yogani locked and without replies so they can continue to serve as a simple entry point to the AYP forums for all who visit.

In order to accommodate those who would like to reply to Yogani's introductions, they have been copied in unlocked topics (like this one) that can be replied to and will "float" up and down the list with all the other topics.

Here is the introduction to this forum, available for replies:


yogani
USA
49 Posts
Posted - Jul 13 2005 : 05:02:54 AM
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Yamas and Niyamas are the first two limbs of the eight limbs of yoga from Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. They have to do with codes of conduct and various methods of preparation of the body, mind and heart for yoga practices. In AYP, we devote selective attention to the yamas and niyamas, as necessary, to support a quick start in meditation, spinal breathing pranayama and other practices. Then the yamas and niyamas are greatly boosted by these powerful practices and blossom of their own accord. This is discussed in Lesson #149 on the eight limbs of yoga, at http://www.aypsite.org/149.html

The yamas and niyamas comprise the following:

Yama  It means "restraint," and includes ahimsa (non-violence), satya (truthfulness), asteya (non-stealing), brahmacharya (preservation and cultivation of sexual energy), and aparigraha (non-covetousness).

Niyama  It means "observance," and includes saucha (purity and cleanliness), samtosa (contentment), tapas (heat/focus/austerity), svadhyaya (study of scriptures and self), and isvara pranidhana (surrender to the divine).

Saucha (purity and cleanliness) includes the shatkarmas (bodily cleansing techniques) and diet.

The shatkarmas (most commonly used ones) include: jala neti (nasal wash), dhauti (intestinal wash), nauli (churning of abdominals, see Lesson #129 at http://www.aypsite.org/129.html), basti (colon cleansing/enemas), trataka (steady eye gazing), kapalbhati (sudden exhale/blowing)

Diet is of interest to many. The basic AYP advice on diet is in Lesson #30, here: http://www.aypsite.org/30.html
Ayurvedic diets to aid in quelling excessive kundalini symptoms are discussed in lesson #69, here: http://www.aypsite.org/69.html

Again, in AYP we rely primarily on the rise of inner silence and the natural purifying tendencies contained within it to inspire our conduct and personal habits to higher expression. This is why in AYP you do not find many rules of "do's and donts." Paths that focus heavily on yamas and niyamas tend to be filled with rules and regulations -- highly regimented. And initiations into additional yoga practices (like those we discuss openly in AYP) are contingent on following the requirements of yamas and niyamas to the satisfaction of the guru. This works for some people, but not for most.

This forum is for discussing the particulars of the yamas and niyamas. Should they be enforced from day one on the spiritual path, or allowed to rise naturally with the expansion of consciousness occurring from deep meditation, spinal breathing pranayama and other yoga practices? When we feel the urge coming from within to undertake shatkarmas, diet changes and other yamas and niyamas, what should we do? Where do the principles of "self-pacing" fit into all of this? There is plenty to discuss here.

The guru is in you.


Edited by - AYPforum on Jul 19 2005 11:43:55 AM
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