Strengthen thyself this International Day of Yoga

When stormed to power, PM Narendra Modi promised ‘achche din’ (good days). Who expected him to come up with a good day to celebrate the existence of Yoga – an ancient Indian science of exercise and healing? After PM Modi proposed the idea to the UN Assembly in September’ 14, June 21 was declared as the International Day of Yoga on December 11, 2014, with consent of 177 other counties. Our PM had already won over hearts, this declaration definitely got him many more.

Since it’s the first time the day is celebrated, the world is gearing up in full swing. Why do we stay behind? No, we don’t intend to organise an event and invite you for practice (we are low on budget. Sshh!), but we make an attempt to steer your attention toward India’s ancient practice of maintaining health and mind.

Buff bod, improved memory, peaceful spirit, increased energy – these are just a few of the benefits of Yoga. Let’s dig deeper to learn few crazy facts about Yoga. Let me tell you, I am pretty convinced by these facts and so would you be! It’s time I choose a healthy lifestyle – for my body as well as my sanity. After reading the list, you’re sure to give it a shot too. Learn why:

yoga-point11. Life can be measured in the number of breaths we take, not years
Yoga is a breathing exercise. The aim is to make it smooth, long and peaceful. Each breath is treated like the fine and rare treasure it is.

yoga-point22. Yoga as anti-aging agents
The sagging of the skin reflected on the mirror is exactly the version that is also happening inside, meaning to our internal organs. Inversions, especially when done well (best to learn with a teacher) with smooth and long breathing, and for a long time, help all internal organs return to their original place because they have gravity working for it.Isn’t that something?

yoga-lung3. Lungs are the most important organ
And we thought, it’s the heart. It is an important organ too but think about its workings, which is pretty much beyond our control (unless we are very advance at Yoga) but the workings of our lungs (expand capacity, slow their rhythm) is in the realm of our control through the way in which we breathe.

yoga-point44. You don’t choose Yoga, it chooses you
Yoga is a 24/7 practice. It becomes important for you to use your energy in the right space. It helps you discover the radiant person that you already are when you delete the crappy people out of your life. Mental peace is the key: Just IGNORE negative energies, don’t say much.

5. You can rest while performing Yoga
Every 30 minutes of asana (poses) practice we must allow 5 minutes of rest (savasana or corpse pose) so that the nervous system has time to come back to normal, quiet, centre, and so we are not over-excited throughout our days.

The list doesn’t end here. We have got a few more interesting facts to feel proud about belonging to the culture that has been ruling the world with the power of yoga. Here we go:

1.Yoga has been called one of the first and most successful products of globalization.

2. Hindu leader Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902) is said to have initiated Yoga’s evolution in the West. 

3.The Beatles, especially George Harrison, also helped introduce Yoga into the West.

4. A 90 year old man who has been a Yoga instructor all his life is contesting the Guiness Book of world records for the oldest man practising Yoga.

Now that you’ve got reasons to adopt a healthy lifestyle through Yoga, just go for it! Make this International Day of Yoga a success!

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Devika Haldar

She is a staunch feminist and loves the colour pink. Why? Because pink has got a bad rap thanks to gender association. She dreams of a world filled with gender-neutral colours. Because men in pink are hot.

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