Yoga (/ˈjɡə/;[1] SanskritयोगAbout this soundpronunciation) is a group of physicalmental, and spiritual practices or disciplines which originated in ancient India. Yoga is one of the six Āstika (orthodox) schools of Hindu philosophical traditions.[2]

There is a broad variety of yoga schools, practices, and goals[3] in HinduismBuddhism, and Jainism.[4][5][6] The term “Yoga” in the Western world often denotes a modern form of hatha yoga and yoga as exercise, consisting largely of the postures or asanas.

The practice of yoga has been thought to date back to pre-vedic Indian traditions; possibly in the Indus valley civilization around 3000 BCE. Yoga is mentioned in the Rigveda,[note 1] and also referenced in the Upanishads,.[8] Although, yoga most likely developed as a systematic study around the 5th and 6th centuries BCE, in ancient India’s ascetic and Śramaṇa movements.[9][note 2] The chronology of earliest texts describing yoga-practices is unclear, varyingly credited to the Upanishads.[10] The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali date from the 2nd century BCE,[11][12] and gained prominence in the west in the 20th century after being first introduced by Swami Vivekananda.[13] Hatha yoga texts began to emerge sometime between the 9th and 11th century with origins in tantra.[14][15]

Yoga gurus from India later introduced yoga to the West,[16] following the success of Swami Vivekananda in the late 19th and early 20th century with his adaptation of yoga tradition, excluding asanas.[16] Outside India, it has developed into a posture-based physical fitness, stress-relief and relaxation technique.[17] Yoga in Indian traditions, however, is more than physical exercise; it has a meditative and spiritual core.[17][18] One of the six major orthodox schools of Hinduism is also called Yoga, which has its own epistemology, ontology and metaphysics, and is closely related to Hindu Samkhya philosophy.[19]

Source – Wikipedia

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