January 22, 2019

The theme of International Yoga Day 2018: Yoga for peace

21 June 2018, 11:55 | Randall Craig

Chennai College students with painted faces during an event to commemorate International Day of Yoga 2018

India gears up to celebrate International Yoga Day

In India, the yoga day was celebrated with much fervour and excitement.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the country-wide celebrations in Dehradun, where around 50,000 enthusiasts at the Forest Research Institute campus stretched an extra muscle in various yogic asanas. To begin with, the International Yoga Day (IDY) 2018 celebrations, PM Modi along with the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh - Yogi Aditya Nath, the Lucknow state witnessed an unbelievable sight with as many as 50,000 participants. Instead of further animosity, Yoga assimilates.

The previous record was that of 55, 524 people performing yoga in Mysore in 2017. Several hundred braved unhealthy pollution levels and hot and humid weather to lay out their mats in the Lodi Gardens park.

#07:40 AM: Yoga is an art of living, says UNESCO: "Yoga is an art of living, a way of being, it is about finding one's true Self & connecting with it". He said: "Yoga is attractive because it is ancient yet modern, it is constant yet evolving".

Union minister Harsh Vardhan, Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal and senior BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi took part in the celebrations.

"Yoga is not just a set of exercises that keeps the body fit".

Well, the celebrations were not restrained to India only, Eastern naval command staff performed Yoga o board INS Jyothi in the Bay of Bengal off Visakhapatnam.

President Ram Nath Kovind, who is on a three-day visit to Surinamese will perform yoga asanas along with his counterpart Desire Delano Bouterse in Paramaribo.

Other events were scheduled around the world later, including in Kilkenny in Ireland, Bahrain, Brisbane in Australia and in Milan. Nor is Yoga only what you practice in the morning.

"When disintegrating forces gain prominence it is yoga that unites, creates amity in societies, which forms the basis of national unity and unity among nations, and finally leads to universal peace and brotherhood".

Yoga has boomed in recent decades, with millions practising it regularly, although in the West it is often more of a gymnastic than a spiritual activity. "One day you walk the path, the next day you find the truth also", Swami Chidanand Saraswati told AFP. Addressing the large gathering in the backdrop of the iconic British-era building of FRI, Modi said yoga has shown the world the way from "illness to wellness" and enriching lives across the globe.

"Many of our valued patients are from the UAE and the GCC and this event is a ideal opportunity to introduce yoga to the local community in a way that is educational and fun at the same time", says Saba.

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