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History of Yoga

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Yoga derives from prehistoric roots, and develops out of Ancient Indian asceticism (tapas). Yoga as a Hindu philosophy ("darshana") is first expounded in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. This earliest school of Yoga retrospectively came to be known by the retronym Raja Yoga to distinguish it from later schools. Indus Valley civilization (ca. 3300–1700 BC) Several steatite seals discovered at Indus Valley Civilization (c. 3300–1700 BC) sites depict figures in a yoga- or meditation-like posture, "a form of ritual discipline, suggesting a precursor of yoga", according to Indus archeologist Gregory Possehl. He points out sixteen specific "yogi glyptics" in the corpus of Mature Harappan artifacts that suggest Harappan devotion to "ritual discipline and concentration", and that the yoga pose "may have been used by deities and humans alike." Some type of connection between the Indus Valley seals and later yoga and meditation practices is supported by many other scholars.Karel Werner writes that "Archeological discoveries allow us therefore to speculate with some justification that a wide range of Yoga activities was already known to the people of pre-Aryan India."

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