The 5 niyamas define aspect for our inner development and our progress along the spiritual path. If we apply these niyamas properly, they will help us to grow strong- physical, emotionally and spiritually- like the fertilizer, water, sunlight and air that nourish a plant.
1. Sauca cleanliness or purity
this term refers to internal as well as external purity.
External it refers to the way of living. Of one’s home, one's diet, clothes and appearance.
Purity of the heart and mind, is the most important aspect of sauca, Bhakti, Karama and Jnana Yoga help us to attain inner purity. Exercises like neti, dhauti/basti, nauli, trataka and kapalabhati.
2. Samtosha contentment
our goal is to have equal- mindedness in all circumstances and in all situations of life. We maintain our equanimity no matter what arises. This leads to inner peace and happiness. Stand back as a witness of your thoughts in your mind.
3. Tapas austerities
refers to self- discipline. It is the desire for the goal. If we want to succeed we must make an effort.
If we want the highest truth, Self- realization, we must pay the highest price, our ego.
Serve others while forgetting their one struggles.
4. Svadhyaya Self- study
study of the Self through meditation, self- inquiry and the study of scriptures. These practices are meant to increase good qualities and bring us closer to our divine nature.
- Hatha Yoga Pradipika
- Gheranda Samitha
- Yoga Sutra Patanjali
- Shiva Samitha
5. Ishvara Pranidhana surrender/devotion to the Divine Will
the purpose of surrender is to eliminate the ego. The dissolution of the small limited self, and the birth of the infinite Self. Surrender removes all fear and tension, leads to peace and bliss, love and compassion. God will make sure that you don't lack anything. Courage to give up one's self is need. It makes you silent, surrender destroys the ego and helps you to experience your nothingness and God's omniscience.
Once you know that you are nothing, that you are totally ignorant, then you have nothing to say.
You have only unconditional and in divided faith; you can only bow down in utmost humility.
When you surrender to a higher consciousness, you give up all your claims; you release your grip from everything that you've been holding on to.
Whether you gain or lose, it doesn't matter now.
You don't want to be something any longer.
You long to be nothing, absolutely nothing. So you dive in to the River of existence.
When you are "in love" with someone, our thoughts are always on that person, you surrender to the experience of love. Whereas worldly love eventually comes to a painful end, divine Love increases exponentially through eternity.