Yoga Sutra 29- 31 Yama’s

Sutra 29

Moral injunctions (yama) fixed observances (niyama), posture (asana) regulation of breath (pranayama), internalization of senses towards their source (pratyahara), concentration (dharana), meditation (dhyana) and absorption of consciousness in the self (samashi) are the eight constituents of yoga.

This speaks only of yoga. These are the 8 limbs or constituents of yoga. The Bible says nothing about yoga practice, good or bad.



Sutra 30


Non-violence, truth, abstention from stealing, continence, and absence or greed for possessions beyond one’s need are the five pillars of yama.


These are the five pillars of yama. Does the Bible agree that we should not be filled with hate or violence? That we should not lie, that we should not steal, or have sex out of wedlock? And lastly, does the Bible tell us not to be greedy? Yes, the Bible agrees with all of these. These are the included in both our 10 commandments and as warnings from God as the seven deadly sins.


The seven deadly sins, more properly called the seven capital sins, are the sins to which we are most susceptible because of our fallen human nature. They are the tendencies that cause us to commit all other sins. They are called “deadly” because, if we engage in them willingly, they deprive us of sanctifying grace, the life of God in our souls. The seven deadly sins are pride, covetousness (also known as avarice or greed), lust, anger, gluttony, envy, and sloth. Of these, in our yamas is avoiding greed, anger, and lust. The last 5 commandments also talk against violence, unfaithfulness, lying, and greed.


You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.” ( Exodus 20)


I believe God and the Bible agree that we should follow our yamas.


Sutra 31


Yamas are the great, mighty, universal vows, unconditioned by place, time and class.


Yes God wants us all to follow these laws, or they would not be written in the Bible. I agree that they are not conditioned on time because Moses and Jesus both addressed them.


Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. The commandments, “Do not commit adultery,” “Do not murder,” “Do not steal,” “Do not covet,” and whatever another commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. (NIV, Romans 13:8-10)


Yes, the Bible and this Sutra agree.