Jnana Yoga: Embracing Wisdom through Yoga

Yoga was originally a mental exercise to learn techniques and methods to use the mind in order to reduce suffering, find and create greater contentment, joy and peace. Yoga became more diverse as it was refined, studied and developed. Yoga evolved into four paths: Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Raja Yoga and Jnana Yoga. Jnana, or wisdom (or knowledge), is the hardest of the four paths of Yoga. It requires great willpower and intellect.

What is Jnana Yoga?

Jnana means “knowledge” or “wisdom”, and Jnana Yoga aims to help you discover the nature of reality by practicing self-inquiry and contemplation. Jnana Yoga is defined as “awareness” of absolute consciousness, and it’s a practice of self-study.

Jnana Yoga uses the mind to explore its nature and transcend its identification with thoughts and the ego. Jnana Yoga’s fundamental goal is to liberate from the illusionary world maya, which includes self-limiting thoughts and perceptions. It also aims to unite the inner Self (Atman), with the Oneness of All Life (Brahman). The Four Pillars of Knowledge define mental techniques of self questioning, reflection, and conscious illumination. Jnana Yoga uses a focused meditation on one question to reveal the illusions created by your worldviews, concepts and perceptions. This practice helps you realize that maya is an illusion and allows you to see all things as one.

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