YOGA IS A SUPER-SCIENCE, NOT A PART OF ANY RELIGION ...
There have been needless controversies and legal debates in the US and elsewhere as to whether Yoga is a part of Hindu religion, whether it should be taught in the schools,etc. What an ignorance !
People don't know that there is actually nothing like Hindu Religion. People living on the banks of the river Indus were called Hindus and the land was called Hindustan or India over time. The actual religion is Sanatan Dharma which literally means Universal and Eternal Religion. The oldest religion in the world civilization, it's a way of life, not a set of dogma.
In ancient Sanskrit literature, Dharma has many meanings. In one of its deepest connotations, it means Righteousness in thought, speech and action. Sanatan Dharma is basically monotheistic. It believes in One God, and in the divinity of every being. It believes that in the final analysis nothing except God exists - Vasudevah Sarvam iti.The 330 million gods and goddesses of ancient India are representations or expressions of different attributes of One God.
Nor do people really understand what is Yoga. The word has deep meanings. In the Gita, aptly considered by those who really understand it, as the finest management manual ever put to print, Lord Krishna says 'Yogah Karmasu Kaushalam' (meaning, Yoga is effectiveness in action), in another chapter it is said 'Samatvam Yoga uchyate'(Yoga is balance between opposites and equanimity amidst mental fluxes), etc. This effectiveness cannot be called Hindu, Christian, Muslim, Buddhist etc. Nor is this balance or equanimity limited by any religion.
Happiness, wellness, peace etc. also cannot be parts of any cult or religious sect. They are universal needs. Meditation, the essence of true yogic practice which leads to the final stage of Samadhi or Union with Spirit, cannot be limited to any single faith either. It is a spiritual practice and so it transcends all divisive dogma.
Yoga is Yujir (to connect) and Yuj (to manage). Unless we connect, we cannot manage. But there are many don'ts in Yoga, and there are many things that Yoga is not. Let us understand.
Ashtanga Raja Yoga, the ultimate blend that makes a scientific path for the final Union, begins with Yama : the five Don'ts. No violence (in thought, speech and action) ; No lying or untruth ; No irresponsible sensual indulgence ; No theft or craving for things not yours ; No hoarding of things more than your actual need. Similarly, we have the 5 Do’s (Niyama) : Shouch (Cleanliness in body and mind),