It surprises most people to know that “Yoga” actually means union with God (the Absolute). And that there are many forms of yoga for making union with the Absolute the Supreme Being. Yoga Philosophy tells us that the various forms of yoga are used to make contact with God through various components of the temple of God (the body and mind). There are five main forms of yoga that are popular around the world and are given safely to the public, which are; Hatha yoga, Raja yoga, Bhakti yoga, Jnani yoga and Karma yoga.
- Hatha Yoga is a system of physical exercises that brings about a balance in the physical body which allows the person feel and come closer to presence of God within. So Hatha yoga is making union with God through physical well-being.
- Raja Yoga is a system of procedures that enhances the mental faculties of a person giving them the ability to make contact and come closer to the higher essence of their consciousness unifying them with the creator of all consciousness God the Supreme Being.
- Bhakti Yoga is the yoga of devotion; it is a system of procedures that lead man down a balance pathway of worshiping God and devoting their lives to God unconditionally. It is the yoga that unifies man with God through devotion.
- Jnani Yoga is the yoga of wisdom, in this yoga system the practitioner uses knowledge and wisdom to make union with God. They shape their whole life around procedures and methods of obtaining higher forms of knowledge that leads toward a balance and harmonies union with the Divine Spark of God within.
- Karma Yoga is the yoga of actions under the divine laws of God. The word Karma means action and all actions work within a framework of divine laws that places the exact pressures on each action. Karma yoga is about molding all your actions under the divine Laws of God thereby making unit with God through all your thoughts and actions.
These free ebooks on this subject can be downloaded from http://www.mysticknowledge.org/ :
Raja Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Jnana Yoga, Karma Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Raja Yoga, and Practice of Karma Yoga,- By Swami Sivananda
Hatha Yoga or the Yogi Philosophy, Series of Lessons in Raja Yoga, Series of Lessons in Gnani Yoga, and Advanced Course Yogi Philosophy,- By Yogic Ramacharaka