When most people hear about yoga, the idea that comes to mind is that of a person seated on a mat, legs crossed, and hands outstretched. However, living a yoga lifestyle is so much more than that. Yoga is much more than the poses, exercises, or workouts. Living the yoga lifestyle requires a deeper understanding of the way one’s body operates, thereby engaging with it at a much deeper level.
In the words of one yoga master, living a yoga lifestyle entails living a life of a pure mind and body and using that to reflect light to the other people who need it. The first part of doing that is by following the five rules of social conduct that are listed below.
Ahimsa is the first yoga principle that a person seeking this lifestyle should adhere to. It means non-violence and it applies to every part of the human life. Mainly it addresses how we treat our bodies and minds, other beings, how we think, what we think and talk about, how and what we eat.
Satya is the second key principle of yoga and it entails being truthful. This offers some sort of guidance in cases where there is conflict between telling the truth and being hurtful. This scenario often plays out when telling the truth may lead to harm and pain. In this case, the principle holds that one should always tell the truth but do it diplomatically. Truth should not be used to hurt others.
The simple meaning of the Asteya principle is not to steal. What it literally means is that one should only take what they need and leave the rest for others. In this age of capitalism and self-promotion, this principle could be very helpful. Today, people will not mind having as much as they can get regardless of how challenging life is for others. A person living a yoga lifestyle understands that they should only take what they need.
This term means faithfulness. It is the principle that faithfulness in your relationships with all the people that surround you. Being faithful means committing to do what is right without betraying them in any way. It is being accountable to those you relate to. In this case, one can be trusted to keep promises, principles, and commitments.
This fourth principle stands for non-greed. It is closely related to Asteya since it relates to taking things unfairly. It means that one should live fairly by using only what he or she requires. As such, someone who desires to live the yoga lifestyle today ought to practice a life of simplicity and avoid extravagance.
As you may have seen in all these scenarios, transforming your current lifestyle into a yoga one largely starts from inside. While there is a tendency in almost all people to want to change others, a yoga transformation changes the outside by starting from the inside. When this happens, it becomes easier to relate to the external environment, including where people are involved.