"When a yogin becomes qualified by practicing Yama and Niyama, then the yogin
can proceed to asana and the other means." -- Yoga Bhashya Vivarana (II.29)
Yama and Niyama are the ethical precepts set forth in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras as the first and second of the eight limbs of yoga. They are the foundation of our practice without which no spiritual progress along the path of yoga can be made. Many people come to yoga initially as a physical exercise and only later begin to understand the profound spiritual effect it has on our lives. But to establish these spiritual effects firmly upon our mindstream, to embed them within our consciousness, they must be grounded on the bedrock of ethical behavior. Our practice begins with Yama and Niyama, and extends into asana and the other limbs of yoga.
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