The Hatha Yoga system is a science of self-discipline based on the energetic anatomy of the human body, a crucial vehicle in the development of self-awareness. Purity of the mind is not possiblevwithout purity of the body in which it functions. Through the practice of asanas, pranayama, and a natural diet, the mind becomes one-pointed, and can progress quickly in concentration and meditation. True peace comes to those who strive to control the body and mind through self-discipline.
Becoming a committed student of yoga, however, has more to do with one’s orientation to the practice rather than being able to “do” all the postures. Cleansing the body in preparation for spiritual pursuits, and opening oneself to a state of deep healing truly touches the roots of yoga. Hatha yoga can be practiced by anyone, regardless of body type, physical condition, age, or religion.
Rachel has studied and practiced yoga since 1998, as one of the first students at Three Rivers Yoga, Pittsburgh’s oldest yoga school. Incorporating the ancient wisdom of yoga into all aspects of her life, Rachel has a daily practice of asana, pranayama, meditation, and a vegetarian diet. She believes that implementing the holistic system of yoga is the most positive action one can contribute to bringing the planet back into harmony, bringing peace to one’s household and family, and bringing true peace to oneself.
“It is not those who lack energy or refrain from action, but those who work without expectation of reward who attain the goal of meditation. Theirs is true renunciation….. Those who aspire to the
state of yoga should seek the Self in inner solitude through meditation.….Select a clean spot, neither too high nor too low, and seat yourself firmly on a cloth, a deerskin, and kusha grass.
Then, once seated, strive to still your thoughts. Make your mind one-pointed in meditation and your heart will be purified. Hold your body, head and neck firmly in a straight line, and keep your eyes from wandering….With senses and mind constantly controlled through meditation, united with the Self within, an aspirant attains nirvana….”
All Quotes from Chapter Six, The Bhagavad Gita