Yoga is fundamentally a spiritual discipline that is focused on the subtle sciences establishing harmony between the mind and body of a person. The word yoga initially appeared in the oldest sacred texts, the Rigveda, and is derived from the Sanskrit word “Yoga” which means to join or to unite. As per the yoga scriptures, practicing yoga leads people to the union of personal and universal consciousness, which ultimately steers to a great harmony between the human mind and body, and also between man and nature.
Yoga originated in prehistoric India and is a physical, mental, and spiritual practice. This practice has helped and benefited millions of people across the world to maintain a state of physical and mental well-being. The elements of yoga are mentioned in the Rigveda.
Rigveda mentions the elements of yoga
The practice of yoga originated in India and its elements are mentioned in one of the four sacred canonical texts (śruti) of Hinduism known as the Rigveda. Its reference can also be found in the Upanishads, an ancient Sanskrit text of spiritual teaching and ideas of Hinduism. Although some writings mention that yoga was developed as a systematic study around the 5th and 6th centuries BCE, in ancient India’s austere and śramaṇa movements. This is the reason, why is quite difficult to track down the actual emergence of yoga as the chronology of the earliest texts describing yoga practices, makes it unclear.
The Indian Vedas are recognized as being the most sacred and treasured texts of India. They are a set of hymns that were acquired by the ancient rishis (sages) as shruti, divine revelation. There are four texts composing the Vedas, including Rig-Veda, Sama-Veda, Yajur-Veda, and Atharva-Veda.
The Rigveda is considered the oldest Veda which originated back to 1500 B.C.E. It is also mentioned to be the most revered and important of the four. As per some writings and preachers, Rigveda’s combination of inspired hymns and mantras was used to invoke courage, peace, prosperity, happiness, health, success, and wisdom. In Rigveda, one also learns the Gayatri mantra. It is practiced today for its potent spiritual qualities and while meditating for yoga. Rigveda also found the initial use and definition of the word yoga. These rhymes provide the foundation and material for all the other Vedas.
The Samaveda is entirely a devotional collection of melodies used to elevate one’s consciousness. The Yajurveda is devoted purely to the worship of the deities and the rules and commands for the technical aspects of ceremonies. And, The Atharvaveda comprises spells and charms to dispel evil, disease, and misfortune.
Concluding the article
The eventual goal of yoga is self-awareness. This helps people to experience their inner and mental happiness by not entertaining themselves in the physical form. But alongside, there is also a mention of Karma Yoga in the Bhagavad Gita, It has mentioned that you do not need renunciation, and can practice yoga in material life as well.