Many of us start our practice as a journey to find a healthier lifestyle. Your reason could be to deal with stress, or to find more mobility in the body. Once you take on the physical practice of yoga, your life changes. As you make your journey into the yogi life, you may hear someone mention the eight limbs of yoga.
These eight limbs of yoga are guidelines for life, similar to the ten commandments. This is just the basics and simple things that you can bring into your life to find more peace and eventually guiding you to a path of enlightenment.
Yama – Restraint or abstinence.
Ahimsa – nonviolence. Or to cause no harm to all living things including animals and insects.
Satya – To speak the truth and live in your truth.
Asteya – non-stealing.
Brahmacharya – To follow the ways of god
Aparigraha – Non-possessiveness. To live without excess and to not hold to objects, emotions.
Niyama – Observances, rules
Saucha – Cleanliness of body and mind.
Santosha – Contentment and happiness. To find contentment in all things and happiness in all things.
Tapas – Purification and the discipline of clearing out impurities to find your true self.
Svadhyaya – Self study and introspection.
Isvara Pranidhana – Living with awareness of the divine presence
Asana – Postures and physical practice
Pranayama – Breath practice
Pratyahara -Withdrawl of the five senses or turning your senses inward
Dharana – Concentration and holding the mind steady
Samadhi – Oneness. The perfect union
There are simple changes that you can do in your daily life to to help you find more peace. Simple things like being truthful with others and yourself. Letting go of materialistic things and moving towards a simpler life. Finding an asana practice and incorporating mediation is just the beginning.