by Marcel Allbritton
The definition of Yoga is Yoga Citta Vrtti Nirodah. This probably does not mean much to you as it is in romanized sanskrit.
Translated, the statement indicates that Yoga is developing the ability to manage (nirodaha) the mental activity of your mind (vritti), so that a refined state of mind (citta) is supported.
T.K.V. Desikachar, a great teacher of Yoga, describes it this way – “Yoga is the ability to direct the mind exclusively toward an object and sustain that direction without distractions.”
For example, when we practice asana, we are focusing on the breath and aligning the movement of the body with the breath. We are being present to ourselves – focusing on ourselves. That is one of the reasons why Yoga works – you focus on yourself, become more aware of yourself, learn more about yourself, and this awareness then informs the choices you make.
When you practice Yoga, you are practicing and developing the ability to focus on one thing. You can then apply this ability to whatever you choose – a musical instrument, writing, gardening, building something, etc. Valuable use of time no?