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Yoga for Health, theme for World International Yoga Day 2017

21-06-2017 05:00 AM | Lathika Saju | My Indian Dream

Yoga for Health, theme for World International Yoga Day 2017 | My Indian Dream

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The International Day of Yoga is celebrated on 21st June every year to spread awareness worldwide about the immense benefits of practicing yoga

India has a big role to play in the celebration of the International Day of Yoga. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on 27th September 2014 addressed the UN General Assembly and stressed the importance of yoga for the benefit of mankind.

In his speech, he stated “Yoga is an invaluable gift of India's ancient tradition. It embodies the unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfillment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and nature. " 

The UN General Assembly was quick to understand the essence of that message and on 11th December 2014 declared  21st June as ‘The International Day of Yoga’. PM Modi had suggested June 21 as it is Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and the day has special significance in many parts of the world.

175 nations, including USA, Canada and China co-sponsored the resolution. It had the highest number of co-sponsors ever for any UNGA Resolution of such nature. With this official recognition by the UN, yoga and its benefits has spread to the entire world.

This year’s theme for yoga is 'Yoga for Health.' The theme highlights the fact that yoga can contribute in a holistic way to achieving an equilibrium between mind and body. Yoga can make a direct and useful contribution to humankind's quest to achieve sustainable development and move towards lifestyles that are in harmony with nature. The word ‘yoga’ itself is derived from Sanskrit and it means to join or to unite, symbolizing the union of body and consciousness.

 In India, ahead of the 'International Day of Yoga' the Ayush Ministry has issued a 'Common Yoga Protocol' to create general awareness toward achieving "harmony and peace through yoga". It is a slim booklet containing a message from PM Narendra Modi and sections on the history of yoga, its various schools and general exercises for health and well-being. There is also a detailed, step-by-step instruction on how to perform various 'asanas', accompanied by sketches.

This year, the country is all geared up to hold the third edition of International Yoga Day on Wednesday with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath performing Yoga along with 51,000 participants in Lucknow. 

The first International Yoga Day function was held on June 21, 2015, at Rajpath in Delhi. PM  Narendra Modi performed yoga along with over 200 million people across the country.

 The second edition was held in Chandigarh with the participation of over 30,000 people in the presence of the Prime Minister.

The numerous benefits of yoga are as follows -

  • Enhances vitality, focus, memory and productivity while stabilizing the body, mind and emotions
  • Strengthens and stabilizes the spine, relieves back pain, stress, anxiety and tension
  • Provides relief from chronic ailments and improves overall health
  • Enhances teamwork and communication
  • Imparts a lasting sense of joy, peace and fulfillment

Therefore, it is appropriate that a day dedicated to yoga is celebrated every year so that increasing number of people become aware of it and benefit from it.

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