As defined by the respected sage Patanjali, Yoga is 'Chitta Vriti Nirodhah', that is, facilitating the harmony of body and mind and envisages wellness of human beings at physical, mental and spiritual level. The eight steps of yoga consist of Yama, Niyama, Aasana, Pranayama, Pratyahar, Dhyana, Dharana and Samadhi. Yoga is also said to be a way of life and when one performs yogic “asanas” regularly he or she achieves all-round benefits.
Meditation is an element of yoga, which is concerned with mental relaxation and attentiveness. Here, awareness is focused on thoughts as well as breathing. Being conscious of breathing automatically organizes the thinking process and thus calms down mind entirely.
Besides meditation is a non-physical activity as opposed to Yoga. It is done by employing relaxation techniques, controlled breathing and a concentrated thought process. Meditation constitutes "stilling" the mind. Bringing the mind to absolute stillness and focusing on one contemplation or rule alone. Yoga, on the other hand, is a psycho-physical regulation focusing on the physical postures known as "asanas" and breathing exercises such as "pranayama", "Yoga" means union. Linguistically, it is linked to the Old English "yoke." Conventionally, the objective of Yoga is union with the Absolute, or with the true self.
Nowadays the spotlight is generally on the more realistic advantages of Yoga, consisting of superior physical fitness, mental lucidity, superior self-understanding, stress control and universal well-being. Famous personalities of the world such as Madonna and Sting are recognized for practicing yoga to stay fit and improve flexibility level of their bodies. Madonna has exhibited flexibility of her body attained by practicing yoga in a lot of her songs. Benefits of meditation are more inclined towards spirituality and calmness of mind. One can restore his or her concentration level to a very good level by practicing meditation regularly.
Yoga involves numerous body postures targeting various parts of body and health benefits. A lot of diseases such as indigestion, constipation, obesity, fatigue to name a few can be cured by doing particular series of “asanas”. One thing that is common in both is that one should perform them regularly even after you have mastered it. You will continue to witness their benefits in a gradual manner but the key for success is patience, determination and sincerity as far as meditation and yoga are concerned.
You can learn meditation by joining an art of living center or meditation center such as one set up by Osho for his disciple coming from all parts of the world.
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