Is yoga a form of meditation？
Yes, it is a commonly accepted fact that yoga is a form of meditation. As a matter of fact, meditation (Dhyana) is one of the 8 limbs of yoga. The other 7 limbs of yoga are
- Yama : universal morality;
- Niyama : internal disciplines;
- Asanas : physical postures;
- Pranayama : breathing work;
- Pratyahara : control or withdraw of the senses;
- Dharana : concentration and cultivating inner perceptual awareness;
- Samadhi : union with the divine.
How to define meditation?
According to wikipedia, meditation is defined as follows:
Meditation is a practice in which an individual uses a technique – such as mindfulness, or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state. Meditation is practiced in numerous religious traditions.
To serve the purpose of becoming aware of yourself and your mind as of time being, and definitely without any judgement. Meditation is a good way to connect with your thoughts, feelings, and sensations and avoid being controlled by any of them.
What is the main goal during meditation? When we do meditation, the major target is to gain a deeper understanding of our true self, break down the habits of self-doubt and reduce the impact of negative emotions. Meditation serves as a very powerful approach to help us becoming better aware of ourselves. It helps us understand who we really are, what makes us happy, and what feeling we are experiencing.
Meditation is not about thinking, but instead, it is a deep state of unity with the object of contemplation. Meditation is a constant practice of intense focus on a particular object, sound, visualization, the breath or deep attention to increasing awareness of the present moment this helps to reduce stress, anxiety, curtail over thinking and promotes relaxation.
What is yoga?
First of all, yoga practice is a form of exercise that uses a series of body postures to achieve physical and mental health benefits. A typical yoga class usually begins with 5-10 minutes of breathing exercise combine with meditation.
Traditionally, the practice of Yoga is divided into three main sections; they are physical postures, breath control, and meditation. These three aspects of yoga come together to create a physical practice that gets us in tune with both the physical body and the inner workings of the mind and increases our focus and awareness.
As many of you might think of yoga practice as an exercise, or a purely physical practice where people are very fit and increase flexibility. Yet the ancient roots of yoga tell a different story. The roots of yoga go back many thousands of years as far as 2700 BC and it includes 8 limbs of yoga, meditation is one of them.
Why yoga is a good form of meditation?
There goes an interested saying, it is said that some people refer to yoga as moving meditation, where you calm your mind and create awareness through doing the poses. Which I think is a quite smart way to describe connection between meditation and yoga.
Yoga’s incorporation of meditation and breathing is said to help improve a yogis’ mental health. Pratice regular yoga poses creates mental clarity and calmness, also increases body awareness, these are good for chronic stress relief, mind relaxation, attention concentration and else.
How to integrate meditation into yoga poses?
The answer is follow your breath, just let your breath guide you. Breath work is such a huge component of yoga, and it’s what makes many forms of yoga somewhat meditative. Try to find your Ujjayi breath (also called “ocean breath” or “victorious breath”), which can not be stress enough of importance. While doing Ujjayi breathing, you inhale and exhale through your nose and at the same time maintaining a slight contraction in the back of your throat and keeping your lips shut.
Keep this in mind, when doing Ujjayi breath, it sounds similar to the haaaah sound you make when fogging up a mirror. Begin with an exhale, and then match each pose to your breath, this might be very difficult ofr beginners, no worry, just keep practice regularly, you will find both your mind and body changes along with that. Also, during yoga practice, feel free to hold poses for multiple breaths.With each exhale, try to release the thoughts and feelings that are no longer serving you.