Hatha yoga, pronounced [ˈhʌθə], also known as Hatha vidya, is a particular system of Yoga introduced by Yogi Swatmarama, around 15th century, who compiled the treatise Hatha Yoga Pradipika. In this treatise Swatmarama introduces Hatha Yoga as ‘a preparatory stage to the heights of Raja Yoga’.
This practise is called shatkarma. The PHYSICAL and the SUBTLE body must be fully operational for the practise of HIGHEST MEDITATION in order to attain a state of dhyana or samadhi.
In other respects Hatha yoga follows the same principles as the Raja Yoga of Patanjali including moral restraint yama and spiritual observances niyama. Hatha Yoga is what most people in the West associate with the word “Yoga” and is practiced for mental and physical health throughout the West.
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