Yoga as a View

Yoga as a View, Practice and Tool

Published in Spectrum, The Journal for the British Wheel of Yoga’ the following are excerpts from the FIRST of a three part article by Paul Harvey.

“It is interesting these days that as a Yoga teacher the question I am more likely to be asked is ‘What kind of Yoga do you do?’ rather than ‘What is Yoga?’. It’s either that we think we already know what Yoga is or, more likely, that the view is becoming lost within the myriad of ways in which Yoga is offered.”

“In terms of what is presented as Yoga today where is the view? We need to have a view, we need to know how to access it and we need to know how to stabilise and sustain it.

In Yoga the View is explored most eloquently in the Yoga Sutra and its main focus is the relationship between two aspects that constantly interact in sustaining our sense of being and individuality. The two aspects are that of the perpetual activity of the mind or Citta and the ever present quality of stillness inherent within the awareness of Cit. When the Citta dominates we are more in the past than the present and when Cit dominates we are more in the present than the past.

The premise of the Yoga Sutra is that when the past takes over we are more liable to act and interact unskillfully. Even within different aspects of our Yoga practice when a disturbance arises it is because the past has taken over, a memory has arisen. However if there was no past there would be no Citta. Citta is like a vault full of past memories. Within this ever active process we want to create a space between impulse and reaction.”

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