Jñāna yoga (Devanāgarī: ज्ञान योग; the pronunciation can be approximated by "gyaana yoga") or "path of knowledge" is one of the types of yoga mentioned in Hindu philosophies. Jñāna in Sanskrit means "knowledge".
As used in the Bhagavad Gita, the Advaita philosopher Adi Shankara gave primary importance to jñāna yoga as "knowledge of the absolute" (Brahman), while the Vishishtadvaita commentator Ramanuja regarded knowledge only as a condition of devotion. In the Bhagavad Gita (13.3) Krishna says that jñāna consists of properly understanding kshetra (the field of activity—that is, the body) and kshetrajna (the knower of the body—that is, the soul). Later in the Gita (13.35) Krishna emphasizes that a transcendentalist must understand the difference between these two.Sri Ganapatrao Maharaj Kannur emphasizes the significance of knowing self so as to know the supreme and that it is essential to vanquish the ego and the identification with the body.
Classical Advaita Vedanta uses the "fourfold discipline" (sādhana-catustaya) to train students and attain moksha. It consists of four stages:
Samanyasa, cultivating oneself the following qualities:
Viveka, the capacity to discern between the real and the unreal. This was an important concept in texts older even than the Bhagavad Gita, and often invoked the image of a Swan, which was said to be able to separate milk (or Soma) from water, whilst drinking.
Vairagya, dispassion, detachment, indifference to pleasure and pain under all circumstances;
^For translation of jñāna yoga as "path of knowledge" see: Flood (1996), p. 127.
^For definition of jñāna as "knowledge" see: Apte, p. 457.
^For the varying views of Shankara and Ramanuja, see: Flood (1996), p. 127.
^B-Gita 13.35 "Those who see with eyes of knowledge the difference between the body and the knower of the body, and can also understand the process of liberation from bondage in material nature, attain to the supreme goal."