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Yoga Dictionary


Yoga Dictionary



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Yoga Dictionary of Quotes ©
Compiled by R. John Allcorn

# - A

3 Bodies:
“The Yoga Cudamani Upanishad explains the significance of man’s three bodies.... The portion composed of physical elements is called the ‘gross body’ (sthulasharira); that portion made up of subtle elements is called the astral (or subtle) body (sukshmasharira); that part which contains the causes of all that each human being is as an individual, is known as the causal body (karanasharira).” (6, p131)

3 Gunas:
See “Gunas”

3 Jewels of Buddhism:
“Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.” (10, p 118)

4 Pillars of concentration:
Vitarka anugata samadhi, Vicara anugata samadhi, ananda anugata samadhi, asmita anugata samadhi

4 Stages of Spiritual Practice in Tantra Yoga:
“The four stages of spiritual practice that can help us remove the five cloaking principles [see below] and actually experience Shiva’s unlimited state for ourselves.” The stages are: krya upaya, shakta upaya, shambhava upaya and anupaya. (29, 76-77)

5 Hindrances - Buddhism:
"The Five Hindrances are: (1) Sensuous Lust, (2) Ill-will, (3) Physical and mental torpor and languour, (4) Restlessness and worry, (5) Doubt. (34, 3)

5 Kanchukas/Veils of Consciousness (AKA 5 cloaking principles):
“When Shiva wills to create, Abhinavagupta explains, it wraps a portion of itself in five kanchukas (cloaks or veils).” The 5 veils are: vidya, kala#1, raga, niyati, and kala #2 (29, 75-76) (cf. 4 stages of Spiritual Practice above)

5 Wonderful Precepts of Buddhism:
“Reverence for life, generosity, responsible sexual behavior, speaking and listening deeply, and ingesting only wholesome substances.” (10, p 91)

5 Elements:
“These five ‘elements’ pervade all things and underlie their manifest form.” The 5 elements are: “air, fire, water, and earth.” (6, p131)

8 Fold Path – Buddhism:
"The Noble Eightfold Path is composed of eight categories or divisions: 1. Right Understanding (Samma ditthi), 2. Right Thought (Samma sankappa) 3. Right Speech (Samma vara) 4. Right Action (Samma kammanta) 5. Right Livelihood (Samma ajira) 6. Right Effort (Samma vayama) 7. Right Mindfulness (Samma sati) 8. Right Concentration (Samma samadhi)" (34, 45)

Abhinivesa (cf. Klesa):
“Avidya is the root cause of the obstacles that prevent us from recognizing things as they really are. The obstacles are asmita (ego), raga (attachment), dvesa (refusal), and abhinivesa (fear).” (1, p 11-Figure 1)

Absolute Truth (Amatta) - Buddhism:
"According to Buddhism, the Absolute Truth is that there is nothing absolute in the world, that everything is relative, conditioned and impermanent, and that there is no unchanging, everlasting, absolute substance like Self, Soul or Atman within or without." (34, 39)

Adept’s Pose:
See "Siddhasana" (male) or Siddha yoni asana (female)

Agnisar Kriya:
Sit in vajrasana.... Open the mouth and extend the tongue from the mouth. Breathe rapidly in and out by contracting and expanding the abdomen.” (6, 107)

Ahimsa (1st yama):
Means “thoughtful consideration for others and things.” (1, p98) “Ahimsa has to do with our duties and responsibilities too.” (1, p98) Ahimsa is “noninjury, consideration, love; one of the yamas.” (1, p238) Ahimsa is “Non-harming, Gentleness, compassion, and love for all beings, including ourselves. Every word, thought or action that involves judgement, anger, greed, lust or attachment is a form of violence to be avoided.” (3, p1) Ahimsa is “non-injury, non-violence, harmlessness or absence of hostility.” (7, p19) We do violence when we “attempt to impress our will or beliefs onto others, or to prevent others from infringing on our own ideals and principles.” (7, p21) “If we are fully aware of violence as it is happening, and observe, without judgement or distraction, then in that full observation the root of violence is revealed, and in that understanding violence evaporates.” (7, p24)

[Under “Awakening the Anahata Chakra] Ajapa-Japa “consists of awareness of the mantra SO during inhalation and HAM [pronouned humm] during exhalation.” (6, 123)

Akashi mudra (“Consciousness of inner space”):
“Sit in meditative pose and fold the tongue back against the palate, as in khechari mudra. Practice ujjayi pranayama and shambhavi mudra, with the head tilted back somewhat.” (6, p98)

Alternate Nostril Breathing:
See "Nadi Shodhan Pranayama"

An ayurvedic term. “Undigested residue.... Energetically, ama lurks in the system as fatigue; mentally, ama creates dullness, irritability, attachment and greed.. And, according to ayurveda, accumulated ama is the breeding ground for disease.” (19, p68)

Amatta - Buddhism:
See "Absolute Truth" above

Anahata Chakra:
See “Chakras”

“I am not talking about pleasure or amusement when I mention happiness or joy. I mean bliss, ecstacy, rapture, felicity— what the sages of India call ananda.” (16, p24)

Vicara anugata samadhi:
Concentration on joy such as sense pleasures within the mind [ananda] which leads to or is followed by [anugata] samadhi [full, sustained concentration] (23, 48)

Antaranga kumbhaka:
See "Nadi Shodhan Pranayama"

Antaranga Trataka (cf bahiranga trataki):
Inner gazing at a chakra etc (6, p118)

A state reached after following the other Stages of Spiritual Practice (see 4 Stages of Spiritual Practice above) when “the distinction between us and Shiva dissolves.” (29, 77)

Aparigraha means “non-attachment” (7, p47) “Attachment is rooted in our craving for continuity.” (7, p50) “The ego creates our prisons of continuity through the mechanism of attachment.” (7, p53) Aparigraha means “non-covetousness.” (7, p80)

Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half spinal twist pose):
See “Spinal Twists”

“forest academy" (30)

Ashvini mudra (“Horse mudra”):
Sit in meditation asana. Contract the sphincter muscles of anus for a few seconds, and then relax them for a few seconds. Repeat this process as many times as possible.” Stage 2: contract during inhalation. Retain the breath and hold the contraction, then exhale releasing the contraction (6, 99-100)

Asmita (cf. Klesa):
“Avidya is the root cause of the obstacles that prevent us from recognizing things as they really are. The obstacles are asmita (ego), raga (attachment), dvesa (refusal), and and abhinivesa (fear).” (1, p 11-Figure 1) The ego (asmita) is “the root of ignorance....The ego is the sense of ‘I’ as separate from the rest of the world.” (7, p67) The ego demands continuance...and this demand in turn leads to all the things we seek to eliminate.” (7, p75) “The ego-personality, which makes an island of each of us in the midst of a supposedly hostile world in which we have to struggle to survive (26, 24)

Asmita anugata samadhi:
Concentration on “our pure sense of I-am-ness” [asmita] which leads to or is followed by [anugata] samadhi [full, sustained concentration] (23, 48)

Asoka (Emperor Asoka) - Buddhism:
Third century B.C. Buddhist emperor who followed the "noble example of tolerance and understanding, honoured and supported all other religions in his vast empire." (34, 4)

Asteya (3rd yama):
Means “to take nothing that does not belong to us. This also means that if we are in a situation where someone entrusts something to us or confides in us, we do not take advantage of him or her.” (1, p99) Means “not coveting what belongs to others; one of the yamas.” (1, p238) “Asteya is not stealing or misappropriating what belongs to another. It is freedom from craving or desiring to possess or enjoy what belongs to another. It teaches us to be at peace with what we have.” (3, p1) “The Sanskrit word asteya literally means non-stealing, but many translators use the phrases ‘absence of jealously’ or ‘absence of envy.’” (7, p27) “We envy because we compare....We divide and classify the world and then compare ourselves to it. With each division we separate ourselves even more from the rest of humanity, and we become isolated.” (7, p28-29) There is no division between ourselves and the rest of the world. (7, p31)

Astral Body:
See “The three Bodies” at top

“When a man knows that his Atman; Is the Atman in all creatures,; Then let him act,; Untainted by action.” (2, p 57) The yogi “should meditate on the Atman unceasingly.” (2, p65) “When we consider Brahman as lodged within the individual being, we call Him the Atman.” (2, p74) Sri Krishna: “The supreme Brahman in this body is also known as the Witness. It makes all our actions possible, and, as it were, sanctions them, experiencing all our experiences. It is the infinite Being, the supreme Atman.” (2, p103 ) Brahman does not exist but is existence itself.... Brahman is within all creatures and objects. When Brahman is in these things, He is known as Atman. The Atman and the Brahman are one.(2, pp 131-133)

See “Raga” and “Aprigraha”

"Om Namah Shivaya, meaning, ‘I honor the divinity that resides within me’." (33, 25)

Avidaya (cf. Klesa):
“Avidya is the root cause of the obstacles that prevent us from recognizing things as they really are. The obstacles are asmita (ego), raga (attachment), dvesa (refusal), and and abhinivesa (fear).” (1, p 11-Figure 1)

“Ayurveda tells us that exercise should be fun, suited to our nature, and always comfortable.” (15, p) 22 “According to ayurvedic principles, exercise is most beneficial when experienced in the outdoors and in good company.” (15, p23)

Astral Body:
Seated forward bend - see Paschimottanasana

CONTACT: R. John Allcorn, M.A., E-RYT

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