Yamas and Niyamas

The yamas & niyamas, yoga’s ethical practice, are the first two steps in yoga’s path to freedom.

The yamas, meaning “restraints,” are comprised of:

  • Ahimsa – nonviolence
  • Satya – truthfulness
  • Asteya – nonstealing
  • Brahmacharya – nonexcess
  • Aparigraha – nonpossessiveness

The niyamas, meaning “observances,” are comprised of:

  • Saucha – purity
  • Santosha- contentment
  • Tapas- self-discipline
  • Svadhyaya- self-study
  • Ishvara Pranidhana – surrender

In this book, each yama and niyama has been given its own chapter in which philosophy is woven with practical examples and stories.  At the end of each chapter is a list of questions that serve as a guide for reflection.  This book is designed to be used for personal or group study and provides a focus for teacher training, ethics and psychology classes at the high school and college level, AA meetings, prison settings, and book studies.

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