Around 400 BC Patanjali compiled the Yoga Sutras, all 196 of them. They are the most translated ancient Indian text in the medieval period, though it fell into obscurity for almost 700 years from 12th to 19th century. Swami Vivekananda brought the Yoga Sutras back to prominence so that they would once again be a prominent Indian text along with the Bhagavad Gita and Yoga Vasista texts. Scholars consider the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali one of the foundations of classical Yoga philosophy and of Hinduism.
The Yoga Sutras are compiled into four sections: Samadhi Pada, Sadhana Pada, Vibhuti Pada, and Kaivalya Pada.
- Samadhi Pada discusses the blissful state where the yogi is absorbed into the One and the main technique the yogi learns.
- Sadhana Pada outlines the two forms of Yoga: Kriya Yoga (action yoga/karma) and Ashtanga Yoga (8 limbed yoga/Raja Yoga)
- Vibhuti Pada describes the power or manifestation that is acquired by the practice of yoga and the temptations that arise, and the purpose of them.
- Kaivalya Pada describes the process of liberation and the reality of the transcendental ego; the ultimate goal of the yogi.
If you would like to follow along with the posts, look into the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali: A New Edition, Translation, and Commentary by Edwin F. Bryant.