What is important from the fragments of Megasthenes is that they provide clear evidence that asceticism was not just a technical part of rituals (as we know from many other cultures) but had become a lifestyle. Here is what Megasthenes had to say:
In classifying philosophers [the writers of India] set the Pramnai [i.e. the Sramanas] in opposition to the Brachman [i.e.Brahmins]. [The sramanas] are captious and fond of cross-questioning; and [they say that] some [philosophers] are called mountain-dwelling, others naked, and others urban and neighboring’ and [the] mountain dwelling [philosophers] use [i.e. wear] hides of deer and have leather pouches, full of drugs, claiming to practice medicine with sorcery, spells and amuletsâ.
Props: A yoga mat, possibly a blanket for head Yoga on highsupport. Avoiding pitfalls: Work hard enough at getting the legs to roll, but stop Yoga on highshort of causing strain. Lie on your back, with your head supported if needed and your arms relaxed. Separate your legs six to twelve inches apart, then relax them Slowly and easily roll your legs in toward each other, then away from each other. You do not need to pick them up off the floor, just roll them. Picture the easy frictionless motion inside the hip joint. This pose is helpful in maintaining range of motion across the midline. The legs are strengthened and the hip flexors are stretched.
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