23 Quotes from Yoga Masters to Enlighten and Inspire Your Practice

Yoga is much more than a physical practice. It’s about tuning in and bringing awareness to our breath and how we feel. It’s moving from our minds down into our hearts.

So, in light of embracing yoga as a holistic practice, we’ve gathered 23 of our favorite quotes to help inspire and awaken your yoga practice. Enjoy!

1. “That’s exactly how it is in yoga. The places where you have the most resistance are actually the places that are going to be the areas of greatest liberation.” – Rodney Yee

2. “While studying yoga in general, and yoga philosophy in particular, it is very important to give yourself license to entertain different ideas. There is no obligation at all that you must believe or buy into the ideas presented in a text. The intention of the original philosophers was quite the contrary; it was that you would learn to think for yourself so you could experience reality as it is.” – Richard Freeman

3. “Remember, it doesn’t matter how deep into a posture you go – what does matter is who you are when you get there.” – Max Strom

4. “You have to go to the edge again and again. That’s how eventually you go beyond.” – Sri Dharma Mittra

5. “The pose begins when you want to get out of it.” – Baron Baptiste

6. “Balancing in yoga and life is a reflection of our inner state. Can we dance with change? Can we fall and try again with playfulness? Do we have the focus, skill, and attunement to find the still point within it all?” – Shiva Rea

7. “Every time you take care of yourself, you’re taking care of all of us.” – Elena Brower

8 “Love emerges when you forget who you are and become the moment. Love is the moment of awe – it is bigger and more encompassing than words can express.” – Colleen Saidman Yee

9. “The physical body is a temple. Take care of it. The mind is energy. Regulate it. The soul is the projection. Represent it. All knowledge is false if the soul is not experienced in the body.” – Yogi Bhajan

10 “Get it out of your head that your legs need to be straight or that it should look a certain way. If you’re breathing, and you’re not compromising your body, then you’re doing yoga brilliantly, beautifully.” – Seane Corn

11. “Yoga is essentially a practice for your soul, working through the medium of your body.” – Tara Fraser

12. “Be congruent, be authentic, be your true self.” – Mahatma Gandhi

13. “Yoga is 99% practice and 1% theory.” – Sri Pattabhi Jois

14. “We are not going to change the whole world, but we can change ourselves and feel free as birds. We can be serene even in the midst of calamities and, by our serenity, make others more tranquil. Serenity is contagious. If we smile at someone, he or she will smile back. And a smile costs nothing. We should plague everyone with joy. If we are to die in a minute, why not die happily, laughing?” – Swami Satchidananda, The Yoga Sutras (136-137)

15. “It is through your body that you realize you are a spark of divinity.” – B.K.S. Iyengar

16. “Eat like you love yourself. Move like you love yourself. Speak like you love yourself. Act like you love yourself.” – Tara Stiles

17. “Seekers who believe they must practice yoga only in the meditation room are under a great illusion. They must practice yoga in society as well. Practicing yoga in the meditation room is easy because there are no external disturbances. But one encounters many disturbances while practicing yoga in society, which makes it very difficult. The true yogi is one who can successfully protect his mental steadiness while in society.” – Swami Kripalu

18. “Yoga is the perfect opportunity to be curious about who you are.” – Jason Crandell

19. “The soul is here for its own joy.” – Rumi

20. “Yoga is a dance between control and surrender – between pushing and letting go – and when to push and when to let go becomes part of the creative process, part of the open-ended exploration of your being.” – Joel Kramer

21. “It is not arrogant or egotistical to feel good inside. You had nothing to do with it. It’s simply the honest response to clearly perceived Reality.” – Erich Schiffman

22. “Yoga is not a work-out, it is a work-in. And this is the point of spiritual practice; to make us teachable; to open up our hearts and focus our awareness so that we can know what we already know and be who we already are.” – Rolf Gates

23. “Yoga does not remove us from the reality or responsibilities of everyday life but rather places our feet firmly and resolutely in the practical ground of experience. We don’t transcend our lives; we return to the life we left behind in the hopes of something better.” – Donna Farhi

What are some of your favorites? Let us know in the comments!

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Meera Watts
Meera Watts is a yoga teacher, entrepreneur and mom. Her writing on yoga and holistic health has appeared in Elephant Journal, Yoganonymous, OMtimes and others. She’s also the founder and owner of Siddhi Yoga International, a yoga teacher training school based in Singapore. Siddhi Yoga runs intensive, residential trainings in India (Rishikesh, Goa and Dharamshala), Indonesia (Bali) and Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur).

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