Yoga in Daily Life at the United Nations
The day of the summer solstice 21 June 2015, will be remembered in history as the first celebration of the International Day of Yoga.
Representatives of Yoga in Daily Life New York and Sri Swami Madhavananda World Peace Council were invited by the Indian Ambassador to participate in this historical event.
The celebration was attended by high officials of the United Nations, distinguished representatives of Indian government, international Ambassadors, as well as representatives of the international yoga community and world media.
The official part of the program started with a video overview of the History of Yoga, and a recorded speech by the initiator of IDY, Indian Prime Minister, Sri Narendra Modi.
The live program continued with speeches from the UN General Secretary, Mr Ban Ki Moon; Indian Minister of External Affairs, Ms Sushma Swaraj; Indian Ambassador Mr Ashok Mukerji; and other dignitaries.
Following the inspiring speeches, all shedding light on Yoga from different perspectives, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar led a program with yoga asanas, pranayama and a short meditation.
Georgian Ambassador, Mr. Kaha Imanadze, spoke from his own experience of practicing Yoga in Daily Life, taught by HH Vishwaguru Maheshwarananda, and streaming from the authentic yoga lineage of Shri Alakhpuriji Sidha Peetha Parampara.
There was an interactive video segment bringing together the UN IDY celebration with the Times Square Solstice Yoga practice, where over 15,000 yoga practitioners were participating outside on the famous street intersection in the center of New York City.
The positive feelings generated by celebrating the first International Day of Yoga brought immense positive energy and hope. This was nicely captured in the words of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: "My hope is that yoga will give people everywhere the sense and the oneness we need to work together to live in harmony and usher in a life of dignity for all."