Talk: The Purpose and Practices of Patanjali’s Yoga – Br. Shankara

  • Post author:
  • Post category:Audio

[et_pb_section bb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ next_background_color=”#000000″][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.3.1″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_audio audio=”″ title=”The Purpose and Practices of Patanjali’s Yoga” artist_name=”Br. Shankara” image_url=”” _builder_version=”3.9″ title_font_size=”22″ title_line_height=”1.2em” background_color=”#ffffff” border_width_all=”5px” border_color_all=”#ffffff” box_shadow_style=”preset3″ background_layout=”light” saved_tabs=”all” global_module=”628402″ /][et_pb_button admin_label=”Button – download” button_url=”″ url_new_window=”on” button_text=”Download the MP3″ button_alignment=”center” _builder_version=”3.9″ custom_button=”on” button_text_size=”15″ button_text_color=”#878787″ button_bg_color=”#f4f4f4″ button_border_width=”0″ button_icon=”%%88%%” button_text_color_hover=”#ce5f27″ saved_tabs=”all” global_module=”628404″ /][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”2_3″][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.9″ header_font_size=”28px” header_2_font_size=”24px” header_3_font=”Open Sans Condensed|300|||||||” header_3_font_size=”19px” header_3_line_height=”1.7em” saved_tabs=”all” global_module=”628400″]

Talk: The Purpose and Practices of Patanjali’s Yoga

Speaker: Br. Shankara

July 1, 2018

Click for PDF of Notes and Quote from this talk.

Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902), a Hindu monk, was born Narendranath Dutta in Kolkata, India. He first introduced Yoga to a wide audience of Americans in the mid-1890s, calling it Raja Yoga, the “royal path” to conquering one’s internal nature. Vivekananda’s translation of and commentary on Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras was published in July 1896. The book became a bestseller in the United States and Great Britain, influencing the spiritual and intellectual thought leaders of both countries.

Swami Vivekananda said, “Each soul is potentially divine. The goal is to manifest this divinity by controlling nature, external and internal. Do this either by work, or worship, or psychic control, or philosophy — by one, or more, or all of these — and be free. This is the whole of religion. Doctrines, or dogmas, or rituals, or books, or temples, or forms, are but secondary details.”

Vivekananda’s bold proclamation points directly to the purpose of Patanjali’s Yoga — the realization of one’s innate divinity by gaining control of the outer and inner aspects of the human form.

Many people who practice hatha yoga are acquainted with Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras — it’s usually a sourcebook for their instructors. Students are taught asanas (postures or poses) and other ancient, proven techniques to strengthen the body and quiet the mind. Patanjali claims these exercises lead to greater psychological and physical poise, heightened mental alertness, and increased psychic power.

Yet, serious students find these are just the first rewards for regular practice of Patanjali’s Yoga. Over time, they develop a much stronger ability to concentrate; this one-pointedness of mind may lead to meditation. From Patanjali’s point of view, that is the deeper purpose of perfecting the asanas and other techniques: They allow the body to sit perfectly still, comfortably, for long enough to turn a trained and calm mind within.

According to Patanjali, most of his methodology — six of the “eight limbs” of his yoga — is devoted to achieving this ability to meditate.

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section bb_built=”1″ fullwidth=”on” _builder_version=”3.3.1″ custom_margin=”|||” prev_background_color=”#000000″][et_pb_fullwidth_header admin_label=”Fullwidth Header – CLICK FOR ARCHIVE” title=”See our full audio archive of talks and events” text_orientation=”center” button_one_text=”Click here!” button_one_url=”” _builder_version=”3.3.1″ title_font=”|600|||||||” title_font_size=”34px” animation_style=”zoom” saved_tabs=”all” global_module=”628399″ /][/et_pb_section]