History of Yoga
By Coming Soon • July 4th, 2005 • 8182 Views
On the History of Yoga there is surprisingly little known, despite the fact that many scholars have studied Yoga History, many gaps still exist. If you have any comments or suggestions please let us know, we are more than willing to add pieces of information to our "History of Yoga"-section and will naturally credit you at the end as one of the authors.
Though Yoga's Origin is shrouded, evidence links the earliest Yoga tradition back at least 5000 years to the beginning of human civilization. Scholars believe that Yoga grew out of Stone Age Shamanism, because of the cultural similarities between Modern Hinduism and Mehrgarh, a neolithic settlement (in what is now Afghanistan). In fact, much of Hindu ideas, rituals and symbols of today appear to have their roots in this shamanistic culture of Mehrgahr. Early Yoga and archaic shamanism had much in common as both sought to transcend the human condition. The primary goal of shamanism was to heal members of the community and act as religious mediators. Archaic Yoga was also community oriented, as it attempted to discern the cosmic order through inner vision, then to apply that order to daily living. Later, Yoga evolved into a more inward experience, and Yogis focused on their individual enlightenment and salvation. The first archaeological evidence of Yoga's existence is found in stone seals excavated from the Indus valley. The stone seals depict figures performing Yoga postures. These artifacts officially put Yoga on the History books circa 3000 B.C., and more importantly link it to the great Indus-Sarasvati Civilization. The Indus-Sarasvati was the largest civilization in the ancient world and exceptionally modern for its time. Named after the two rivers that flowed through India, the Indus-Sarasvati was a maritime society, exporting goods throughout the Middle East and Africa. They constructed multistory buildings, a sewage system, and laid out geometrical brick roads.