Yoga And Emotions Essay, Research Paper
Yoga and Emotions
Hinduism believes that yoga has many different paths to enlightenment. Jnanic, Bhaktic, Karma, and Raja yoga’s are the different paths. They are different paths, but the Hindus believes that they all lead to the same destination, which is spiritual freedom.
Yoga not only unites our body with our mind but with our true self or spirit. Yoga’s goal is to extinguish the fire of emotions within us. I believe that just by being human, we are enslaved by our emotions, which in turn chains us to the material world. By being attached to the material world, we are cut off from our true self and, therefor, are not spiritually free. The only exemption to worldly emotions is love. The only way to spiritual liberation is by learning to master all of our own emotions.
Emotions, other than our human bodies are what makes us part of the animal world. Anger, joy, despair, etc., are what traps us inside our bodies. They make us slave to our senses. That’s why there are yogis that can endure any pain or hunger because they have total control of their emotions. By blocking out all emotions, they are able to shut off all their senses, making them more aware of their spiritual self. But most of us are born with emotions. Emotions are part of our instinct, that’s why they are so hard to control. All animals have emotions including us.
Love is the exemption of all worldly emotions. First of all, all humans are capable of love, but not all animals are. That is what separates us from the animal world, the ability to love. Animals can be trained to like something or someone, but not to love. Liking is an instinct love has to be learned and nurtured to grow. True love is never materialistic. We can say that love is more of a spiritual emotion. Christ, Buddha, Krishna, and other really great spiritual masters teach that the only way to heaven/ enlightenment is through meditation/prayer and compassion or love. Love is also thought in most paths of yoga but is emphasized in bhakti yoga because they follow Krishna’s teachings. I believe that love is also the reason why many yogis fail to achieve the greatness that Buddha had. Some yogi’s become ascetic and try to block all emotions, but they also try to block out love. The Buddha became the enlightened one because he practiced both meditation and compassion or love. He knew that the spirit is not complete without love. Christ also taught that love is the food of the soul and the only way to heaven. Bhakti yoga also realizes that love is important to achieving enlightenment that’s why it is an important part of their teaching.
Yoga helps us control our emotions through all their exercises and meditations and by following the teachings of the Bhagavad-Gita. Yoga knows that controlling our emotions is what separates us from the other organisms in this world.