What is Yoga? A Historical Look You Probably Haven't Seen
Origins of Yoga
Yoga evolved over the centuries and became more widely practiced in the Middle Ages. During this period yoga was often practiced by aspirants and monks seeking spiritual enlightenment.
One of the most influential figures in medieval yoga history was Swami Svatmarama, who lived in India in the 15th century. Svatmarama wrote the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, a text that he still considers one of yoga's most important writings.
Yoga in Modern Times
Yoga began to gain popularity outside of India in the late 19th century and his early 20th century. This is largely due to the efforts of yogis like Swami Vivekananda and Paramahansa Yogananda who traveled to the West to teach yoga.
During this period, yoga was seen primarily as a spiritual practice, but increasingly it was also seen as a form of exercise. In the 1920s, a yogi named Tirumalai Krishnamacharya developed a form of yoga that focused on postures and breathing techniques. Known as Hatha his yoga, this form of yoga is still widely practiced today.
Yoga became even more popular in the West in his 1960s, often associated with the counterculture movement. This has led to the development of new forms of yoga, such as Bikram yoga and power yoga, which are more physically demanding than traditional forms of yoga.
Yoga is an ancient practice that has evolved over time into the vast and diverse field it is today. Although yoga was originally developed as a spiritual practice, it has also gained popularity as a form of exercise and stress management.Understanding the history of yoga is a rich and fascinating underpinning of this powerful practice. Whether you're interested in the mental, physical, or spiritual aspects of yoga, there's a form of yoga for you.