Learn About The 5 Yamas Of Yoga And Ways To Practice Them

Learn about the yamas of yoga and its 5 types, along with the benefits it has in making you a better person as it works at all the levels.

Charu Sharma
Written by: Charu SharmaUpdated at: Oct 19, 2021 09:00 IST
Learn About The 5 Yamas Of Yoga And Ways To Practice Them

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A holistic exercise that is known for its physical, mental and spiritual benefits, Yoga is something that is being practiced in different parts of the world and is an Ancient Indian Practice that has gained a lot of popularity in recent times amongst the people around the globe. When we talk about yoga, it is not just an exercise that will help you to stay physically fit and provide relief from conditions like arthritis, obesity and correct your posture or provide mental benefits like curing epilepsy and strengthening the nervous system. /it surely has a lot more to it. Today we are going to learn about the yamas of yoga and its 5 types, along with the benefits it has in making you a better person as it works at all the levels including action, thoughts and words.

What are the 5 yamas of Yoga?

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Yoga being an exercise that is closely related to a person’s spiritual being, it is proven to help people in becoming their better selves. The sanskrit word Yama translates to restrain in english. In various religious texts these yamas have been outlined as five social strains that are the first limb of the eight limb ashtanga yoga system. There are mily five types of yamas that are a part of the yoga sutra namely-

  • Ahimsa
  • Asteya
  • Satya
  • Aparigraha
  • Brahmacharya

Let us take a look at what these 5 yamas are along with their benefits and the ways in which they can be practiced.

#1. Ahimsa

The first yama out of the 5 yamas of ashtanga yoga system ahimsa is a sanskrit word that translates to non violence, where we have Mahatma Gandhi as an example of this quality. Ahimsa is a yama that promotes non-violence in the form of thoughts and actions. It says that no one should harm a person through their actions, words or even their thoughts including nature. Practiced through meditation this yama sends a message of love and kindness towards the society and your family and friends. This yama promotes kindness towards your body and says that a person should treat his/her body by observing their physical limits.

#2. Asteya

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The sanskrit word steya refers to the virtue of not stealing. One of the 5 yamas, this promotes the idea of not stealing which goes way beyond that not stealing the materialistic objects. Asteya also inculcates the idea of not stealing non-materialistic things like ideas and other things from your environment and yourself as well. Practicing asteya asana with mindfulness can help a person to avoid the unauthorisation of ideas and aspirations along with the consumption of natural resources.

#3. Satya

The word satya is a word that originates from Sanskrit language that literally translates to honesty and truth. Practicing the satya yama means being honest about your thoughts not just with others but yourself as well. This yama helps you to get out of the stage of denial. Try practicing satya yama without being judgemental and by observing the limits of your body and mental strength. It helps to work in order to honour your limits. 

#4. Aparigraha

Non attachment and non possessiveness to the material things is the essence of the fourth yama of ashtanga yoga. Apargriha is a Sanskrit term that translates to non-attachment and non-greediness.  In order to practice the aparigraha yama a person needs to let go of its attachments along with the expectations. 

#5. Brahmacharya

The fifth and final yama, brahmacharya means moving towards the supreme consciousness by practicing fidelity, moderation, celibacy and conservation of power. A person can incorporate brahmacharya in their lives by relaxing and resting in order to recharge themselves. Bramhacharya is inspired from the hindu god brahma and means to look at everyone and everything with expressions. This yama can be practiced with the help of a child's pose.