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Raja Yoga



Sometimes known as the Royal Path, Raja Yoga is regarded by many as the superior of all forms of yoga.  For such people Hatha Yoga is merely a preparation for the `higher` spiritual practices of Raja Yoga.


It is often thought that Raja yoga concentrates almost entirely on the meditative/spiritual aspects of yoga sadhana.


Considering the aim of yoga – wholeness/unity/Self realisation  it is important to remember the eight aspects of Yoga described in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali :









The idea that meditation as traditionally practised is the ultimate stage on the road to Samadhi may be the result of listing the eight aspects as a list as shown above, and as a result of describing the eight as `steps` implying a logical and linear progression.  The yogi will realise of course that all the aspects, like the spokes of a wheel, are important and support one another.  To simply sit and `meditate` can no more lead to Samadhi than thinking that the ability to perform perfect asanas without awareness can achieve Self realisation.


In fact Raja yoga should be seen to be the Royal Path which seeks to integrate the teachings and practices of the body positive aspects of yoga – Tantra and Hatha et al, with those of the renunciate and meditative approaches.

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