The Meaning of Yoga

Posted By Mimi on Sep 14, 2011 in O2 Yoga Blog | 2 comments


I came across this quote the other day. It really resonated with me. I shared it in the last intensive and it struck a chord with many of you as well. It really sums up what I believe the true meaning and purpose of yoga to be. Today, in my weekly visit with my friend Assim, he asked me what I thought yoga to really be about. He asked me if it required one to go somewhere quiet and away from the world. I thought about it for a moment and then realized that I believe the complete opposite. Yoga practice, for me, teaches how to be IN the world, not away from it.  I especially like the part about discriminating correctly and acting fearlessly.

Yoga never demands the sacrifice of our reason. It only bids us: use it a thousand times more. Yoga does not require us to give up our active lives. It says simply: act, but know how to act. Yoga does not by any means wish us to push our understanding aside. It only tells us: discriminate correctly and act fearlessly. Yoga does not expect us to flee from the world and to retire into the Himalayas. It assures us: the refuge you seek, you will never find in the outside world. It is within you. Leave the stormy world of the senses behind you, raise your consciousness to the central point of your being and realize that here alone is the force, here alone is the peace and here alone the refuge you are seeking. Yoga teaches us: do not condemn the world. Deify the world with your deeds, purify the world with your utterances and ennoble the world by your presence.
-Selvarajan Yesudian