(atha) Now (yōga) Union (anushasanam) practice/explanation/awareness or discipline
This is the first standza from Yoga Sutras Book I – Samadhi Pada.
It can be translated as
“Now begins Yoga: the Union of Mind, Body & Spirit”
From Dr. Omanand GuruJi:
“What is the point when yoga begins?
The moment you are disciplined yoga begins. What is discipline, the Sanskrit word which has been given by Maharishi Patanjali in his definition is ‘atha yoga anushasanam’.
Now be disciplined & Yoga begins.
What is discipline? It simply means mastering the self or ruling the self, you are not under any influence. You are not under any effect. You are not under any pressure, But you are within yourself disciplined body, physical, mental, emotional & social, a good level of discipline is beginning of your yoga, all the classics, always remember
discipline is the key for a successful Yoga practice.”
Patanjali was a sage in India who is believed to have authored a number of Sanskrit works, the most prominent of which is the Yoga Sutras, a classical yoga text dating to 200 BCE – 200 CE.
Patanjali is believed to have created the Yoga Sutras as a way of compiling already existing teachings into a format easier to follow and understand.
Today Patanjali is considered the father of yoga and his Yoga Sutras are one of most common texts that are studied on subject of yoga.