Polarity is a fundamental concept in yoga. In the ‘physical sciences’ it is described as two poles at opposite ends of a body, each of which have an opposite or contrasting nature. …


This principle can describe quite visually the action of a magnet, or invisibly in the principles of electromagnetic light-waves, electricity, or the change in potential of a cell due to the accumulation of liberated gases.

Each of these represents a condition, whereby the negative force is able to flow towards its positive counterpart, leading to a ‘union’ ( of the positive and negative).

Positive and Negative Forces

“The so-called ‘unity of things’ is only a form taken by a particular manner of the coming together of two forces, the subjective and the objective, designated as Shiva Shakti, the (+) and the (–) poles of experience…

Since the two parts and their subsequent sub-divisions actually belong to the whole, there is a natural pull exerted by each on the other… There cannot be attraction between the positive and the negative unless they form two poles, and, yet, at the same time, there cannot be an attraction if they are absolutely two different things with no internal relation. Attraction and repulsion, love and hate; are such phenomena that defy logical understanding.”

~ Swami Krishnananda

It is upon this principle that much of modern technology has sprung. This ‘universal energy principle’ has been known in Eastern traditions through ancient times. The Taoists referred to it as yin-yang. It is the shiva shakti, or male-female principle of the teachings of yoga.

The later branch of hatha yoga endeavours to harmonize the positive solar (ha) and negative lunar (tha) forces. The ‘union’ of these fundamental opposing forces is the generative force behind the ultimate state of ‘union’ or ‘yoga’ referred to as satori, nirvana, samadhi or enlightenment.


According to yoga, the sorrows of life are caused by a bipolar existence, a split of the ‘one’ into ‘two. Remember that the truth of everything is ‘oneness’ and not the apparent ‘dual form’ of the existence of things.

This delusion of duality creates an ambivalent attitude of like and dislike between ‘one pole’ and ‘another’ — love getting suppressed when hate supervenes and hate being driven underground when love gains the upper hand — while the fact is that both of these attitudes are simultaneously present in a individual, both aspects of a singularity, and only one of the aspects comes to the surface as and when the occasion demands.

Human nature, under the delusion of duality, is thus in a state of perpetual conflict — it is never in state of balance between its two compulsive attitudes. To get back from duality to real ‘unity’ is the process of yoga sadhana, which in effect is ‘re-polarization’, or the process of re-establishing polarity.

As long as the living cell is in balance of these two forces (positive and negative) it is protected from all destructive forces which oppose life. The body loses its polarity as a result of negative thoughts, disturbed emotions, improper breathing and debilitating disease.

The condition of illness (physical, mental, emotional), therefore, results from a polar imbalance. Health results from balance. In order to return the body to the state of health and harmony, polarity must be re-established.

Hatha Yoga

In the hatha yoga techniques, one operates within a wide range of subtle energies. These energies are always polar (meaning they have two poles (+) and (–)).

As mentioned previously, in the Sanskrit language, ha means ‘sun,’ and tha means ‘moon’.

Symbolically, ha represents the positive (+), solar types of energies, and tha represents the negative (–), lunar types. Together they represent the fundamental polar energies of yoga.

The practice of hatha yoga is a polarity practice which leads to the balancing of the positive and negative energies. Only in balance can we experience health, harmony and success in life.

Too much lunar (–) energy leads to a lack of control and mental instability, while too much solar (+) energy manifests in a lack of sensitivity and rigid, inhumane character.

These two forms of energy can also be referred to as:

(–) passive, yin, receptive, feminine.

(+) dynamic, yang, emitting (controlling) male…
[continued …]

This page is an exerpt from one of the 21 lessons of The Basic Yoga Trainer eCourse at www.theyogatutor.com. To view the rest of this lesson, you must enrol here .

Preview the Next Lesson here …

Preview the Previous Lesson here …

Back to Free Yoga Lessons

Back to homepage from Polarity