THE NIYAMA IN YOGA: TAPAS AND THE OTHERS
We have already spoken of the niyama and in particular of saucha and santosha, here we also see the other 3 that are part of the observances to do in a path aimed to the study of yoga.
The third niyama is TAPAS i.e. ‘austerity.
The word Tapas means precisely austerity and relates to the fact of being able to exercise ones own willpower, pursue a goal, or an objective even small and be able to reach it with perseverance and dedication.
Many times we set a goal but are not able to keep constant, we are distracted by other things and this is so also in the yoga practice: for example the mind is replete with thoughts or sleepness comes up or a thousand other things that deter us from continuing the practice regularly.
We must first understand which are these barriers, study them, and then deal with them practically.
The journey of a Yogi, i.e. the one who really wants to take a path of knowledge of himself and of his body, is much more difficult than what one actually thinks because of all these difficulties encountered along the way. Only by practicing with constancy and determination, with curiosity and with abandonment to practice with time one manages to overcome these obstacles.
THE NIYAMA IN YOGA
SVADHYAYA IS THE FOURTH NIYAMA.
The word Svadhyaya instead means the study of oneself and relates to the importance of knowing who we are and to raise our knowledge and wisdom
In this observance is enclosed according to a classical interpretation also the study of the ancient texts and the knowledge of the great masters of the past and of the present. You can not get to know a discipline without having studied its bases, philosophy, the thought of those who created it or contributed to its creation.
A study therefore of ourselves through the questions that we ask ourselves and then also and especially an indirect approach through the study of philosophy for example of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, Upanisads, Bhagavad Gītā and other Indian philosophical texts.
As it is also important to have a point of reference that is a teacher, a style, something or someone who can help us to grow steadily.
THE NIYAMA IN YOGA
The last niyama is ISVARA PRANIDHANA i.e. abandonment to the divine.
In Sanskrit the word Isvara means abandonment and Pranidhana divine, so this principle is to entrust oneself to the essence of what it is and therefore to the Divine.
Obviously this is the highest of the Niyama and has to do with the abandoning of oneself to nature and to that something bigger than you, that dominates you and guides you, not necessarily seen from a religious point of view but from a universal and personal one.
And in fact only once you have researched the mysteries of life and that you have found in some way the answers to your questions and understood the aspects of the universe, you become aware of that something bigger that you know exists, of the flow of life of the union with everything, of the eternal truth.
But we must become masters in remaining in contact with the thin line that connects our interiority with the outside and must learn to surrender to existence, as it is.
We do not therefore speak about religion but Spirituality, the research of oneself , of the soul, of the vital energy that it creates.