It is often said that in Sanskrit, ha represents sun and tha represents moon. This is not the case, any more than the Chinese word yin means the moon or yang means the sun. Technically ha and yang both represent the masculine or solar principle in all polarities while tha and yin both represent the feminine or lunar principle in all polarities. The term Hatha Yoga therefore, refers to the integration of (apparent) opposites into a more complete whole. It is the yoga of physical well-being, dealing primarily with the physical body, but including all the other practices of Raja Yoga, such as ethical behavior and meditation. Most of the yoga postures familiar to Westerners are part of the Hatha Yoga tradition.
lit. `the forceful yoga` - a generic term for a range of practices including yoga postures, breathing exercises, mudras, cleansing exercises and ethical codes which prepare the aspirant for meditation.
is the physical aspect of the Yoga Practice, including postures (asana), breathing techniques (pranayama), seals (mudras), locks (bandhas) and cleansing practices (kriyas). 'Ha' means sun and 'tha' means moon. The object of Hatha Yoga is to balance the flow of the solar and lunar energy in the human body.
A form of yoga dealing with the control of the body and bodily activities as the means of stilling the mind. The process of deintoxication and rejuvenation is done by means of six purificatory acts called Shat Karma, like Neti and Dhoti etc. It is considered as a methodical approach to the attainment of the highest in yoga—Raja Yoga. 'Hatha' literally means will-power or indomitable will to do a thing, howsoever uncommon it may be. Etymologically 'Ha' represents the sun and 'tha' stands for the moon. Hence Hatha Yoga aims at coordinating the warm and cold aspects of sun and moon respectively by working through Ida and Pingla.
Yoga of physical exercises that now a days go by the name of Yoga. These are essentially to keep the body in fit condition and spiritual growth even in the most advanced persons is only upto the point of Ajna Chakra. Too tedious to be practiced and wrought with complications in spiritual life because " when we start with the bodily exercises of Hatha Yoga the consciousness of our physical efforts with the idea of self in the background also remains all through. Thus the ego instead of getting reduced goes on increasing thereby."
lit. "forceful yoga." A system of physical and mental exercise developed in ancient times as a means of rejuvenation by rishis ("seers" or Vedic bards) and tapasvins (ascetics) who meditated for long hours, and used today in preparing the body and mind for meditation. Its elements are 1) postures (asana), 2) cleansing practices (dhauti or shodhana), 3) breath control (pranayama), 4) locks (bandha, which temporarily restrict local flows of prana) and 5) hand gestures (mudra), all of which regulate the flow of prana and purify the inner and outer bodies. Hatha yoga is broadly practiced in many traditions. In the West, hatha yoga has been adopted as a health-promoting, limbering, stress-reducing form of exercise, often included in aerobic routines. Esoterically, ha and tha, respectively, indicate the microcosmic sun (ha) and moon (tha), which symbolize the masculine current, pingala nadi, and feminine current, ida nadi, in the human body. (See Yoga Styles)
Sometimes considered the origin of yoga, Hatha is based around self-improvement that is achieved by postures, breathing and meditation exercises to purify the mind, body, and spirit. The postures are designed to induce relaxation and a sense of well being. No legs behind the ears here, in fact, Ananda yoga (a classical style of Hatha) uses gentle postures which re-align the body, moves energy up to the brain, and controls breathing, thus preparing you for meditation.
Branch of yoga that is devoted to the physical processes (as opposed to others that focus on wisdom, meditation, service, etc.) and involves breathing and physical exercises. There are many types of physical yoga.
("Forceful Yoga"): a major branch of yoga, developed by Goraksha and other adepts c. 1000 C.E., and emphasizing the physical aspects of the transformative path, notably postures (asana) and cleansing techniques (shodhana), but also breath control (pranayama)
While certain branches of Yoga center on wisdom, meditation and service, Hatha Yoga is the branch devoted to the physical aspects of harmony and alignment. Many physical stems of Yoga are open for exploration, from breathing and simple asanas to poses that require tenacity of mind, body and spirit.
Hatha yoga, pronounced [ËˆhÊŒÎ¸É™], also known as Hatha vidya, is a particular system of Yoga introduced by Yogi Swatmarama, a sage of 15th century India, and compiler of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika. In this treatise Swatmarama introduces Hatha Yoga as 'a stairway to the heights of Raja Yoga', hence a preparatory stage of physical purification that renders the body fit for the practise of higher meditation. This practise is called shatkarma.