Dharana: The 6th Limb of Yoga Explained

“Dharana” is the sixth limb of yoga. It is a term that is used to describe the act of holding a specific posture or position. The word comes from the Sanskrit word “dhar” which means “to hold”.

In Dharana, the sixth limb of yoga, the focus is on concentration. The objective is to focus the mind on a single object. In a yoga class, there will be an explanation & demonstration of this technique.

Dharana is a limb of yoga that is often described as a “spell”. Dharana is actually a subset of the sixth limb of yoga, which is called udatta-kumbhaka. While dharana is often used to explain an internal silence that comes about when you are concentrating on a particular point of focus, it is also used to describe a physical state of samadhi.

Can you remember the last time you were completely focused and absorbed in an activity? Whether it was something creative, like painting or writing, or something physical, like dancing or running, your mind was silent except for this one thing.

This state of total concentration… It’s a peaceful feeling, isn’t it? In its essence it is dharana, the total concentration of the mind.

What is Dharana?

When we have made progress on the eightfold path of yoga through asana practice, meditation and sense control, we are ready to move on. It is from here that dharana – the fixation of consciousness on a single point – begins.

Dharana is the fixation of the mind on a particular point. It can be something inner, like a body part or chakra, or something outer, like a painting, statue or other object. It is not so important what we concentrate on; the goal is to quiet the mind with this total concentration.

When we focus our mind intensely on one point, the rest of the mind becomes calmer. When we practice this form of concentration, there is less room for the other thoughts, memories and plans that normally occupy the mind.

Dharana is an important step towards the next step, dhyana, meditation. We need to be able to focus our minds before we move forward. Although the last three stages of the eight-step path – dharana, dhyana and samadhi – are very closely related. These last three steps represent the inner yoga, the activity of the mind, and they are independent of the physical senses.

First we will have a deep concentration of dharana through which we can proceed to dhyana, meditation, and finally to samadhi, oneness with the whole.

Dharana in practice

When practicing dharana, try to find a comfortable sitting position that does not require much effort. When the muscles begin to twitch or the legs begin to tremble, the mind tends to follow the sensation and concentration can easily be lost.

You can close your eyes and concentrate on something inside you or focus your thoughts on an image or object in front of you. Imagine giving your mind the freedom to wander, but within a very limited space.

You choose what that limited area is, and the mind is free to explore it within the limits you set. You can start with a larger area of focus to start with a larger area of freedom for the mind. As you progress, the area you focus on may become smaller.

Benefits of Dharana

When we practice dharana, the mind becomes calm. We strengthen the mind by concentrating on one area and practicing mind control. The mind is like a muscle we can exercise, and it is not beyond our control – thoughts come and take us. We have control, and dharana is a way to exercise that control.

When you practice Dharana, you will find that your overall concentration becomes easier in different areas of life. You can learn without your mind constantly going back and forth as you try to concentrate.

The practice of Dharana helps to focus and calm the mind on the path to meditation. It gives the mind something to think about while everything else settles down. The practice of Dharana helps us to become more aware of our mind throughout the day. Especially when we experience strong emotions in life, dharana can help us balance these feelings and find a place of calm.

Dharana in daily life

Ideally, we should remain in the state of dharana throughout the day. Concentrate on the task at hand, let the mind go where we will, use it as a tool at our disposal. But before we get to that, let’s enjoy the little moments.

Modern life demands a lot from us, and the constant fast pace, switching from one thing to another, from email to Facebook, from TV to music, makes the mind restless. He begins to get used to the constant distractions and loses the habit of concentrating on one thing.

To integrate this practice into your life, first try to focus on just one thing, whatever it is. When you eat, just eat, don’t read or surf the internet at the same time. If you’re walking, just walk and don’t talk to your friends on the phone.

Instead of flipping through magazines or the internet, read something substantial that requires your mind to focus on for a while. When you’re doing the dishes, focus only on what you’re doing. These are all ways to start practicing dharana in your life.

You can then slowly move into more focused concentration, meditation, and eventually insights into oneness with the whole. In the meantime, find peace and joy in practice, in trusting yourself, in not giving up and in manifesting.The sixth limb of Patanjali’s eight-limbed Yoga system includes an important element called dharana. What does this mean? Dharana is, literally, the “concentration of the mind”. It’s as simple as taking a deep breath and focusing your attention on one thing only. It’s the ability to stay focused on one thing without distraction, which is why a yogi would be able to meditate for hours in a single sitting.. Read more about types of dharana and let us know what you think.{“@context”:”https://schema.org”,”@type”:”FAQPage”,”mainEntity”:[{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”What is the importance of sixth limb of Ashtanga yoga dharana?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” The sixth limb of Ashtanga yoga dharana is called the “yoga of knowledge”. It is a process of self-inquiry that leads to the realization that one’s true nature is pure consciousness.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”What is the purpose of Dharana?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” Dharana is the process of focusing the mind on a single object.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”What does Dharana mean in yoga?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” Dharana is a Sanskrit word that means “concentration.” It is the first step in the process of meditation.”}}]}

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the importance of sixth limb of Ashtanga yoga dharana?

The sixth limb of Ashtanga yoga dharana is called the “yoga of knowledge”. It is a process of self-inquiry that leads to the realization that one’s true nature is pure consciousness.

What is the purpose of Dharana?

Dharana is the process of focusing the mind on a single object.

What does Dharana mean in yoga?

Dharana is a Sanskrit word that means “concentration.” It is the first step in the process of meditation.

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