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FlipAsso
19 April 2009, 04:16 PM
Hi there. I'd like some begginers books on Raja Yoga.

I've got a translation of the Yoga Sutras, but I don't like it very much.
Maybe there are better translations.

I thought of buying the e-Book Eight Limbs of Yoga, by Yogani, do you know if it's any good?
I was also planning on buying the Tantra book by the same author.

I would like a begginers book that explains the Yama's and Niyamas as well as other angas of the ashtanga.

Do you recommend taking classes?
I don't think there are strict Raja Yoga classes, just some hatha yoga and other kinds in my town. I've took some so I've got an Idea of the pranayama, asana and samyama.

BTW - I've read an excelent article on Yama and Niyama, but it was a very extremist opinion and he gave not much room towards a gradual development. His opinion on Satya(?) (truthfulness) was a very strict one, which at some point I agreed with, but seemed a bit extremist...
I would apreciate if your recomendations were more moderate in tone.

Thanks in advance

FlipAsso

yajvan
19 April 2009, 04:35 PM
hariḥ oṁ
~~~~~~

Namasté FlipAsso



I'd like some begginers books on Raja Yoga.


I am sure others will offer you many (good) ideas. Keeping with the notion of introductory per your request, I'd suggest Raja Yoga by Svāmi Śivānanda . Are there other books - sure no doubt, plenty can be had.

There is also many lectures and reviews on line ( perhaps even this book I mention) : http://www.sivanandaonline.org/


Some discsussions on yama and niyama are also here on HDF that has a deeper POV ( IMHO) on this matter. Not better, just deeper. You will see multiple posts here: http://www.hindudharmaforums.com/forumdisplay.php?f=57 |

Hope to see your opinions and points of view on this most noble subject.

praṇām

Philippe*
19 April 2009, 06:54 PM
I would advise you "The heart of Yoga" from T.K.V. Desikachar... but there are others on the market. As for Yoga Sutras, it is better to take several translations with commentaries and if possible to receive the teachings from a teacher orally who will convey the wisdom in a more living way, it was made this way.

Philippe

FlipAsso
20 April 2009, 05:15 AM
Hi all, thanks a lot for your answers. I'll have a look at the books you recommended.

There are a lot of tantra, hatha and swasthya yoga teachers here. I don't recall ever seeing a Raja Yoga teacher per se.
Do you think having classes with a teacher that is studied in the yoga sutras is good enough??
Also starting practice before a bit, of having the classes is it ok?

Philippe*
20 April 2009, 06:55 AM
Hi all, thanks a lot for your answers. I'll have a look at the books you recommended.

There are a lot of tantra, hatha and swasthya yoga teachers here. I don't recall ever seeing a Raja Yoga teacher per se.
Do you think having classes with a teacher that is studied in the yoga sutras is good enough??
Also starting practice before a bit, of having the classes is it ok?

It depends on your background, if you know a bit of meditation, you can carry on with that for the time being. I would advise you teachers affiliated to KHYF Krishnamacharya Healing and Yoga Foundation, which I know the best, but it is not exclusive. The principle is to tailor Yoga to your individual needs and this implies generally private lessons which you can take at times. Yoga is a personal practice even if collective courses have their positive sides, it has been taught on an individual basis since time immemorial. Maybe if you feel affinities with Vedanta, you can find other organizations with a Vedantic approach.

The money based relationship can be reluctant, you might find people teaching for free, but in our societies it is difficult to live this way. Traditionally in India, the student lived with the teacher (gurukula), he was taking care of by the teacher and his family if he was married, then when the teacher thought that the student was ready, he asked the student for gurudakshina : it could be money, help to build a house, nothing... For instance, Krishnamacharya (famous yogi, teacher of my teacher's teacher) after seven and half years in Himalaya near the Manasarovar lake was asked in the end by his guru Ramamohan Brahmacari to marry and teach Yoga for the rest of his life.

I currently undergo a four-year teacher training course, but a diploma has not a lot of value in itself, it is a matter of lifetime training and practice. I am living in France and I spent a lot of time before finding the right training and teacher. There are a lot of Yoga teachers out there, but according to me very few yogis associating excellent technical abilities and advanced spiritual awareness. That being said, you don't have to go to India to find a good teacher (acarya) there are also very good ones now in US and not just in asanas.

Philippe

FlipAsso
21 April 2009, 12:24 PM
@yajvan I couldn't find Raja Yoga online. Did you mean Lectures on Raja Yoga by Swami Sivananda??

Cheers

brahman
13 October 2009, 02:40 AM
Hi there. I'd like some begginers books on Raja Yoga.

I've got a translation of the Yoga Sutras, but I don't like it very much.
Maybe there are better translations.

I thought of buying the e-Book Eight Limbs of Yoga, by Yogani, do you know if it's any good?
I was also planning on buying the Tantra book by the same author.

I would like a begginers book that explains the Yama's and Niyamas as well as other angas of the ashtanga.

Do you recommend taking classes?
I don't think there are strict Raja Yoga classes, just some hatha yoga and other kinds in my town. I've took some so I've got an Idea of the pranayama, asana and samyama.

BTW - I've read an excelent article on Yama and Niyama, but it was a very extremist opinion and he gave not much room towards a gradual development. His opinion on Satya(?) (truthfulness) was a very strict one, which at some point I agreed with, but seemed a bit extremist...
I would apreciate if your recomendations were more moderate in tone.

Thanks in advance

FlipAsso


Patanjali Yoga Sutras

Translation of 1: 20 to 1: 26

It says,


Sutra: 1: 21:
The goal is near for those who are SUPREMELY VIGOURIS and INTENSE in practice.

Sutra: 1: 22:
There are differences between those who are mild, average and keen their practices.


Sutra: 1: 23:,
OR the mind can be restrained by profound meditation upon god and total surrender to Him.


Sutra: 1: 24:
God is the Supreme Being totally free from conflicts, unaffected by actions and untouched by cause and effect.


Sutra: 1: 25:
God is the unexcelled seed of all knowledge.



Sutra: 1: 26:
God is the first, foremost and absolute GURU, unconditioned by time.


Thanks to Mr. BKS AYENGAR for the translation.


OR , this or doesn't stands as 'another option'

OR emphasies the easiness of Rajayoga, if you meditate upon God and total surrender to Him




Its my ipinion alone FlipAsso, not asking you to do it.:)

rkpande
13 October 2009, 06:28 AM
'hatha yoga pradipika' says that hatha yoga is a stepping step to raj yoga. IMO you start with hatha yoga pradipika, (shiv samhita and grehanda samhita latter). a reading of serpent power by woodroffe is also recommended, before going over to patanjali.

tao_of_drew
06 January 2012, 02:57 PM
Namaste,
I'm surprised no one suggested Raja Yoga by Swami Vivekananda.
You can read it here (http://www.shardsofconsciousness.com/user/sites/shardsofconsciousness.com/files/ebooks/RajaYoga_Vivekananda.pdf).

AllHindu
28 May 2012, 11:41 AM
Tao of Drew, thanks for posting the Raja Yoga by Swami Vivekananda.

Etheros
02 September 2012, 08:30 PM
Hi there. I'd like some begginers books on Raja Yoga.

I've got a translation of the Yoga Sutras, but I don't like it very much.
Maybe there are better translations.

I thought of buying the e-Book Eight Limbs of Yoga, by Yogani, do you know if it's any good?
I was also planning on buying the Tantra book by the same author.

I would like a begginers book that explains the Yama's and Niyamas as well as other angas of the ashtanga.

Do you recommend taking classes?
I don't think there are strict Raja Yoga classes, just some hatha yoga and other kinds in my town. I've took some so I've got an Idea of the pranayama, asana and samyama.

BTW - I've read an excelent article on Yama and Niyama, but it was a very extremist opinion and he gave not much room towards a gradual development. His opinion on Satya(?) (truthfulness) was a very strict one, which at some point I agreed with, but seemed a bit extremist...
I would apreciate if your recomendations were more moderate in tone.

Thanks in advance

FlipAsso

As far as books on the theory, I would go with Swami Sivananda and Swami Vivekananda's books as recommended above. As far as practice, the only book I can personally vouch for is "A Systematic Course in the Ancient Tantric Techniques of Yoga and Kriya" by Swami Satyananda Saraswati. It's basically integral yoga which incorporates practices from all the different branches - hatha, raja, karma, bhakti, jnana, kriya, etc. Emphasis is on the practice though and there's a lot of it. I've had wonderful results with it personally and I've hardly gotten through a quarter of the book. It certainly seems to avoid extremist points of view.

But as far as extreme opinions go, I think it's always good to read books with different perspectives, even if they're too intense for you to implement. Sri Swami Sivananda's books generally take such an approach but that's what makes them inspiring to me. He has that stop-wasting-your-life-and-meditate tone which can be a little imposing but sometimes it's exactly what I need. It's always good to read a wide selection of opinions.

Yogani is probably the most moderate in this sense and his e-books are very inexpensive so you won't lose much in any case. What I've read of his I found to be generally informative. Maybe it was a little short and oversimplified in parts, and he takes a lot of heat for not having a 'genuine' lineage, but he's got some real gems in his writing if you read through some of it. His tip on getting into khechari mudra was priceless, I haven't found anything like it anywhere else, I would have never thought to use a finger to push the tongue past the uvula. All the other books just said to find a guru. I'm sure they're probably right because I have a feeling there's much more to khechari than just having your tongue in the nasal pharynx, but I'll take what I can get for now.

I've never seen a raja yoga class but as far as I understand, raja yoga is basically concentration that leads to meditation and samadhi. So perhaps any meditation class can serve that purpose for a beginner. Like someone mentioned before, hatha yoga is generally practiced first so you could always look into that if you're a beginner to yoga in general.