Hatha & Raja Yoga

About Hatha & Raja Yoga

Hatha Yoga deals with the control of breath (Pranayama), Asanas, Bandhas and Mudras.
‘Ha’ and ‘tha’ mean the union of the sun and the moon, union of Prana and Apan.
‘Hatha’ also means any tenacious practice till the object or end is achieved.

Hatha Yoga is inseparable from Raja Yoga. Raja Yoga begins where Hatha Yoga ends. Raja Yoga encompasses both body and mind, but the emphasis is on mental and spiritual development. Its purpose, is to unite the practitioner with the higher self. Raja Yoga and Hatha Yoga are interdependent. No one can become a perfect Yogi without the knowledge and practice of both these Yogas. Hatha Yoga prepares the student to take up Raja Yoga.

A Hatha Yogi starts his practice with body and Prana; a Raja Yogi starts his practice with the mind; a Jnana Yogi starts his practice with Buddhi (intellect) and will.

In further detail a Hatha Yogi acquires Siddhis (psychic powers) through uniting Prana with Apana and by sending through the six Chakras (centres of spiritual energy) to the 7th centre Sahasrara (point at the crown of the head).

A devotional person obtains Siddhis through self-surrender and the consequent descent of grace.
Kriyas such as Neti, Dhauti, Nauli, Basti, Tratak and Kapalabhati belong to Hatha Yoga. Not all of these need to be applied. Although those who are advance in their practice and who’s bodies are prepared and composed should practise these Kriyas. It is important to learn these under an expert Hatha Yogi.

Hatha Yoga is not the goal. It is only a means to an end. This will lead to Raja Yoga after possessing good health and vitality. 

“The Hatha Yoga can not be obtained without Raja Yoga, nor the can the Raja Yoga be obtained without Hatha Yoga”.

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