Continuing the discussion that’s NOT about sex scandals, or how yoga can kill you (ridiculous, by the way), let’s take a look at the personal observances of living a yogic life. Note: if you’re looking for requirements like orgies, brainwashing or other sinister machinations, look elsewhere.
In part one of this series, “On Yoga, Really: Who’s Your Yama,” I talked about the first of Patanjali’s 8 limbs of yoga. The yamas are the rules of life, so to speak, the “commandments” if that’s a parlance you identify with. The Niyamas, or the second limb, are the “rules for living” or “personal observances”. They are a code for living soulfully, as we are a piece of the interconnected mortal coil we call life.
In other words, Yamas are the Precepts of Social Discipline, whereas Niyamas are the Precepts of Invididual Discipline. We adopt these precepts of individual discipline consciously, but through meditation and opening ourselves up to a greater consciousness, these disciplines become an ingrained part of our energetic DNA.