What has 8 limbs, is 5,000 years old and generates happiness and peace wherever it goes?
Well, yoga of course!
Yes, yoga does have eight limbs. One limb for each aspect in the yogic system. The eight different appendages are: yamas, niyamas, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana & samadhi.
Yoga is a very old practice indeed. The latest estimates have calculated it to be around 5,000 years old.
Documentation tells us that when yoga started there were only 15 poses:
- siddhasana (perfect pose)
- padmasana (lotus pose)
- simhasana (lion pose)
- bhadrasana (fortunate pose)
- vastikasana (auspicious pose)
- gomukhasana (cow face pose)
- virasana (hero pose)
- kurmasana (tortoise pose)
- kukkutasana (cock pose)
- uttanakarmasana (intense tortoise pose)
- dhanurasana (bow pose)
- matsyasana (fish pose)
- paschimottanasana (intense West side stretch pose)
- mayurasana (peacock pose)
- savasana (corpse pose)
No downward dogs, no sun salutation, not even a tree pose.