The history of yoga is fascinating. The founder of the practice of yoga, Patanjali, was the first to understand the benefits of the physical body in its pursuit of spiritual development. Patanjali thought that every individual was made up of spirit and matter, and that the goal of Yoga was to reclaim the spirit in absolute purity. However, this formulation is not consistent with the philosophical tradition of most Indian countries, which favors nondualism and the concept that the countless aspects of the physical world are just one. In the ancient times, it was more common to practice nondualism, the belief that the body is pure formless and conscious.
The history of yoga can be traced back to a time when young students were seeking yogic teachers in India. One of his students became a Hindu monk and became the father of modern yoga in the West. This monk traveled to various parts of India, Japan, and the United States, introducing Yoga and Vedanta to western students. His followers quickly adopted his teachings and eventually spread Hinduism all over the world.
Although the history of yoga is vast and varied, the main aim of the practice is the same: to liberate individual consciousness from the enslaving influence of the Maya world, and to merge with the supreme consciousness. In addition, the fundamental philosophical premise of yoga implies that the human soul is capable of liberation, and that yoga has been around as long as humans. But is it really a myth? We may never know!
In the beginning, yoga was practiced around 500 B.C., the time of Gautama the Buddha. The Indus civilization spread over 300,000 square miles, and was the largest in early antiquity. Its carvings depict yogi-like figures. As you can see, yoga’s benefits were not just physical, but also mental. The ancient Indus civilization used yoga for its mental benefits. Even before Buddhism, yoga had been practiced for thousands of years in India.
The history of yoga began as a search for meaning in life. In this way, the development of yoga ebbed and flowed with the influences of major religions in the area, including Jainism and Buddhism. As a result, many tenets from these religions were incorporated into the development of yoga. Eventually, the practice became popular and spread to other parts of the world, including the West.
Although the history of yoga is complex and extensive, the practice has undergone several transformations. While the eastern roots of yoga can be traced back to the Indus Valley, it has become an accepted practice throughout the world. Despite its many transformations, it is possible that yoga is not true yoga. And there are many people who practice the ancient forms of the practice in Western countries. If you’re not able to distinguish between true yoga and an auxiliary practice, then the history of yoga is not very helpful.