Traditionally, yoga wasn’t about the poses, or asanas. “Yoga” is a Sanskrit word that translates in English to “union.” The roots of yoga are founded in a philosophy of union. Union of the mind, body and soul. Union of the self with the divine. It’s the concept of oneness—of each individual being a part of a universal consciousness.
There are four main paths of yoga: Raja Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and Karma Yoga. Raja yoga is the yoga of mind and body control. Its focus is on meditation and energetics. It is from Raja yoga that hatha yoga and modern asana practice developed. Bhakti yoga is the path of devotion and focuses on devoting yourself to worship of the divine. Jnana yoga is the yoga of wisdom and encourages people to study the ancient scriptures such as The Upanishads.
And then there’s karma yoga. Karma yoga is the yoga of action. It’s about purifying your heart by learning to act selflessly in service of others. Through karma yoga we learn kindness and compassion without an expectation of gain. The idea being that learning these lessons helps us to step away from our ego, freeing us to move one step further on the path to enlightenment.
Service can be a powerful means of releasing yourself of your ego, learning to act from pure intentions, and connecting with the bigger picture. Service is at the heart of karma yoga and it is this belief in the power of karma yoga and the importance of giving back that is at the core of our company.