Yoga Sadhana (pronounced saw-duh-naa) is defined as the sustained practice of Yoga. Some writings solely refer Sadhana as the practice of Hatha Yoga (postures, breath control); but sadhana is a way of life itself. Raja Yoga (or the King of Yogas) describes eight steps for Yoga (or Self-realization). These are

. Yama or Restraints (non-violence, truth, non-stealing, continence, non-greed)
. Niyamas or principles (purity of thought/action, contentment, austerities/discipline, Self-study of sacred/spiritual texts, Surrender to the Almighty.
. Asanas (Postures)
. Pranayama (Breath control)
. Pratyahara (Restraint of the senses)
. Dharana (Concentration)
. Dhyana (meditation)
. Samadhi (super conscious state or full awareness)

The practice or sadhana of the above eight steps leads one to Yoga or Self-realization. A sustained effort at incorporating all of the above in one’s life is also Sadhana. So if you thought last weekend’s storm kept you away from Yoga practice, that may not be necessarily true.

Pick a day this week to practice one of Yamas or Niyamas and evaluate your state of mind at the end of day.


[From a Feb 2006 email sent to students]

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