More On Patanjali's Yoga Sutras
There is more to the practice of yoga than just the physical benefits and so, it also requires understanding the yoga sutras as written by Patanjali. In fact, if you want to derive the most out of these verses that help you reach a higher level of self discovery there are as many as one hundred and ninety-five yoga sutras to learn about. What's more, the entire yoga sutras are based on the first four sutras.
In essence, the yoga sutras are built on the Samkhya philosophy and to put it concisely these sutras provide practitioners with a philosophy that outline an art as well as science of how yoga can help in achieving a higher state of self-realization. Thus, by studying the various yoga sutras, you should be able to examine, encounter as well as transcend different levels of false identity in your mind until there is a dawning of the true Self within you.
Yoga denotes union while sutra means a thread and thus the aim of yoga is to bring a person to unite the self which should help overcome the divided person and when it is combined with the thread or sutra, it helps create a tapestry of better insight as well as direct experience. What's more, the practice of adhering to the teachings of the yoga sutras goes back to about 400 BC and some even believe that it was practiced even earlier to about 3000 BC.
The best part about the yoga sutras is that it is easy to commit to memory all one hundred and ninety-five separate phrases and it also lends it well to modern yoga practices, which is why it is held in high regard by every different type of practitioner of yoga. However, the exact origins of these sutras is open to debate though what is known is that they were authored by Patanjali, though even this is open to debate and in fact Patanjali is actually considered by some to be no more than a compiler of the yoga sutras than their author.
In any case, the yoga sutras comprise four books including Samadhi Pada that contains fifty-one sutras, the Sadhana Pada that contains fifty-five and a like number are contained in the Vibhuti Pada while thirty-four are contained in the Kaivalya Pada. Patanjali's yoga sutras are a staple for many yoga practitioners who use the ideas contained in the sutras to achieve a higher state of being.