Kriya Yoga vs Kundalini Yoga: Understanding the Differences

Kriya Yoga and Kundalini Yoga are two distinct terms within the philosophical system of Yoga, each with their own unique purpose. Kriya Yoga, coined by Paramahamsa Yogananda, the author of Autobiography of a Yogi, focuses on achieving spiritual growth by regulating one’s breathing through intense Pranayama sessions. In essence, Kriya Yoga represents the varying levels of Pranayama.

Key Takeaways

  • Kriya Yoga is a term created by Paramahamsa Yogananda, aiming at spiritual growth through regulating breath in Pranayama sessions.
  • Kundalini Yoga focuses on the development of mental and physical purity, leading to a state of spiritual absorption and is also known as the Yoga of awareness.
  • Both Kriya Yoga and Kundalini Yoga aim for the highest state of bliss, although sage Patanjali, the founder of the Yoga system, mainly advocated for Raja Yoga to achieve this state.

Kundalini Yoga, on the other hand, is a physical and mental discipline that aims to develop the purity of the mind and body, thereby leading to a state of spiritual absorption. This form of Yoga can be practiced through meditation techniques. Often referred to as the Yoga of awareness, Kundalini Yoga seeks to improve human consciousness, intuition, and self-knowledge, unlocking the unlimited human potential within every individual. Its ultimate goal is to activate the Kundalini Shakti in each person, allowing them to attain spiritual powers and a higher capacity for serving others, ultimately bringing them closer to God.

Sage Patanjali, the founder of the Yoga system of philosophy, did not discuss Kriya Yoga or Kundalini Yoga aspects in great detail. Instead, he primarily emphasized the practice of Raja Yoga for attaining the highest state of bliss. However, Kundalini Yoga also aims to achieve this state.

Dmitri Ivanov
Dmitri Ivanov
Dmitri Ivanov, a writer and managing editor, was educated in Canada and holds a BS in Science. Dmitri loves doing research, writing, and teaching various courses.


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