About the book Yoga has a long history, from early indications in the Harappan civilisation (2900-1900 BCE) among wandering ascetics and forest hermits and echoes in the early Upanisads (600-400 BCE). The first instructions for practice were formulated by the Buddha (563-483 BCE) as the eightfold path to liberation. A remarkably systematic instruction appeared in a short passage within a composite text known as Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra (cca 300-400CE) consisting of an eightfold path (astanga yoga). Various other yoga paths were elaborated in later Upanisads, the Bhagavad Gita and the Puranas. The present series is intended to publish research works of high academic standard, which could serve as reliable guides for evaluating books on yoga appearing in the market.
About the Author
Professor Karel Werner, born in 1925 in Czechoslovakia, studied Philosophy, History, Indology and Sinology in Universities of Brno and Olomouc (PhD in 1949).He became lecture in Sanskrit and Indian Civilisation in Olomouc (1947). After the Soviet invasion of Czechoslo-vakia (August 1968), he emigrated to England, where he was appointed Spalding Lecture in Indian Philosophy and Religion in the University of Durham (1969-90). He is now an Honorary Professional Research Associate in the Department of the Study of Religions in SOAS, University of London and a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society. He published articles and books on Vedism, Yoga, Buddhism and History of Religions in English, German and Czech. He is currently preparing a new book on Pure Yoga in Historical Context and Today.