Why would 170 countries sign up to endorse 21st June 2015 as the first International Yoga Day? How is it that something that started over 5000 years ago is still going strong? You could argue why has it taken 5000 years for so many countries to accept this day as a day of change? Is it just going to be a one day wonder day or something more sustaining?
If it is going to go into school curriculums, governmental departments and private companies ethos's and into NHS and health systems the world over how is this going to happen? These were some of the questions asked yesterday 26th January at the House of Parliament at the launch of International Yoga Day.
Ravi Bhanot Director Coolherbals and The Ayurveda Institute of Europe, one of the organizers of the event said "Yoga supports us through the power of silence, using oxygen and exercise to connect the mind body and soul. Let us see how we can now use the power of communication and exercise our influence in every way to support yoga."
Satish Sharma, secretary of National Hindu Council of Temple (UK), said that the vision of Narendra Modi in getting the UN Resolution to make 21st June as International Yoga Day starts the second wave of revival of Yoga in Britain. There are plans for world wide awareness and planning taking place.
Sushma Bhanot co-Director of Coolherbals added that " yoga is an integrel part of society and touches each of our lives, through its many paths."
Lord Dholakia added that "he has a library in his back garden. Meditating and reflecting is crucial. Yoga is a way to reduce the enormous pressures on the NHS. He would support this."
Lee Scott MP backed Lord Dholakia's opinion. " If yoga can help people's ailments and costs nothing or very little it makes sense to have this in the NHS and in schools."
Neil Patel, a hip hop yoga instructor from Harrow, described how Doctors had given him a death sentence when he was diagnosed with cancer and how yoga had cured him. Krishna Bhanot, from South Woodford and a yoga practitioner, said "yoga had transformed her health by simply doing yoga for one hour daily."
There was general consensus that we need to have more political lobbying and to win political support we need evidence that yoga can help. Dr Katrien Hertog from Prison Smart Project and Sue Hindle from IAHV, both from Art of Living gave encouraging reports on how yoga is helping. For example there was 69% improvement in abstinence from drugs and alcohol amongst prisoners and 68% had a reduction in anxiety. This was because yoga affected deep down "into the DNA level and not just superficially."
Raj Jatengia from the NHSF said they visualize their 4000 Hindu students in universities would participate in doing Flash Mob yoga dance on the 21st June and Rakesh Shah from ISKON would be fully involved in various events on the 21st June too.
Dial Sharma from Acton Asian Association and a yoga teacher for the last 40 years said that everyone can do the yoga. He teaches people who are in their 80's and "if they can do it so can everyone."
L. George from Asian Voice and Keith Coomber from Om Yoga and Lifestyle were there to welcome the VIPs. Ravi Bhanot praised the work Asian Voice and Om Yoga and Lifestyle are doing to promote Yoga and natural sciences.
Virendra Sharma MP and Mike Gapes MP were present to lend support for yoga. If you are interested in being involved in International Yoga Day phone 020 85979039 or email [email protected].