Bhakti Yoga: The Yoga Of Devotion


Practicing Karma Yoga

Bhakti yoga is the yoga of devotion. This form of yoga is different from the others because it guides you along the path of self-awareness, self-realization, and enlightenment. It is one of the four main paths to enlightenment.

Bhakti Yoga: The Yoga Of Devotion
Bhakti Yoga: The Yoga Of Devotion

What Is Bhakti Yoga?

Bhakti means ‘devotion’ or ‘worship’ in Sanskrit. This yoga teaches the various ways to unite the Bhakta with the Supreme Being. The bhakta is a bhakti yoga practitioner. It is one of the easiest paths to learn. One gets a soul-satisfying and unique experience in this journey. The mind, body, and soul get lighter and happier as you progress in this journey of enlightenment.

While you require a flexible body to perform hatha yoga, a disciplined mind t perform raja yoga and a keen intellect to perform jnana yoga, you only need an open and dedicated heart to practice bhakti yoga. However, this yoga also enhances your experience of other yoga forms too. As you get deeply engrossed in performing bhakti yoga, jnana yoga follows automatically.

Benefits Of Yoga For Mental & Physical Health
Bhakti Yoga: The Yoga Of Devotion

How Is Bhakti Yoga Performed?

Bhakti yoga is a spiritual practice that is highly influenced by the Hindu Gods and deities. Each of these deities is believed to be a humanized form of the Supreme Being. This aspect does create a hindrance for Catholic or Christian yoga lovers. They find it hard to worship any other deity or god other than their own Jesus Christ.

It is, however, not necessary that you worship only Hindu deities while performing it. You can find and worship your own object of devotion while performing this form of yoga. The ultimate goal of this practice is to unite the practitioner with the Divine.

Basic Elements Of Bhakti Yoga

This yoga practice has nine subforms. Each of these limbs creates a different feeling or ‘bhav’ that further helps you perform your devotional yoga properly.

1. Shravana – Hearing the ancient scriptures or books.

2. Kirtana – singing devotional songs.


3. Smarana – remembering the Divine by chanting his name.


4. Padasevana – performing self-service with devotion.


5. Archana – the ritual pooja done by lighting fire, using flowers and such other items.

6. Vandana – Prostration before your Divine.


7. Dasya – unquestioning devotion of the Divine.


8. Sakhya – creating a relationship and friendship with God.


9. Atmanivedana – Surrendering of yourself to the Divine.

Benefits

Keertana is one of the most popular subforms of this practice. Many people attend weekly or monthly kirtan programs. It can also be done along with other types of yoga exercises.

It softens your heart and also frees you from jealousy, anger, lust, hatred, pride, arrogance and gives you a light-hearted feeling. Moreover, this practice makes your heart filled with love, joy, bliss, peace, and knowledge. Also it helps you shun all kinds of materialistic worries, mental torments, fears and helps you perform your worldly duties in a better way. In addition, this worship helps you reach the state of pure bliss by surrendering your soul to the Divine. It makes you clear and unburdened from the heart and mind. You will find yourself better equipped to handle worldly pressures and troubles.

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