Ashtanga Yoga in Sutras and the Gītā: A Comparison with Edwin Bryant (#157)

This talk is being republished from the Radial Practice Conference in 2018. If you have a Gītā handy you might want to grab it while you listen.

About the Guest

Edwin Bryant received his Ph.D. in Indic Languages and Cultures from Columbia University. He taught Hinduism at Harvard University for three years and is presently the professor of Hinduism at Rutgers University where he teaches courses on Hindu philosophy and religion. He has received numerous awards and fellowships, published eight books, and authored a number of articles on the earliest origins of the Vedic culture, yoga philosophy, and the Krishna tradition.

As a personal practitioner of bhakti yoga for over 45 years, a number of them spent in India studying with traditional teachers, where he returns yearly, Edwin strives to combine academic scholarship and rigor with appreciation towards traditional knowledge systems. His teaching method is to allow the ancient texts to speak in their own voice and through their own terms and categories.


In this episode, we discuss:

  1. Patañjali’s citta-vṛitti-nirodhaḥ type practice in the Gītā.
  2. The difference between karma and karma yoga.
  3. A new definition of yoga, skill in action.
  4. The 3 definitions of yoga in the Gītā.
  5. Ashtanga-type practice in the Gītā in comparison with verses in Patañjali.
  6. The mind of a yogi.
  7. Bhakti, the highest expression of yoga.

Quotes from the Episode

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