Early yoga - 1

Excerpts from the Katha Upanishad that describes what yoga is in the early days of the development of this physical, mental and spiritual practice.

Katha Upanishad 3.3 - 4

3   Know the self as a rider in a chariot,

         and the body, as simply the chariot.

     Know the intellect as the charioteer,

         and the mind, as simply the reins.

4   The senses, they say, are the horses,

        and the sense objects are the paths around them;

     He who is linked to the body (atman), senses,

        and mind, the wise proclaim as the one who enjoys.

Hindu chariot.jpg
Katha Upanishad 6.10 - 11

10   When the five perceptions are stilled,

          together with the mind,

       And not even reason bestirs itself;

          they call it the highest state.

11   From distractions a man is then free,

         for yoga is the coming-into-being,

        as well as the ceasing-to-be.

Image from the Yogic Studies 101 course: An Introduction to the History and Philosophy of Yoga by Seth Powel