20 Jun '18
Celebrating The International Day of Yoga Around The World
Yoga means union – not just of body and mind, but of the individual to the divine. It means that we are all connected, to one another and to everything. Fitting, then, that on June 21, yogis all over the world celebrate the International Day of Yoga (IDY). Proposed by India and endorsed by 175 member states, the United Nations established IDY in late 2014 in recognition of yoga’s widespread appeal and its health merits. It’s estimated that 100 million people worldwide participated last year. For this, the fourth annual IDY, the theme is “Yoga for Peace” and it coincides with the Summer Solstice. We rounded up a few noteworthy gatherings that honor the lineage and practice of yoga across the globe.
Perhaps the largest IDY gathering worldwide, this event at the Forest Research Institute in Dehradun is predicted to attract more than 60,000 people. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who originally proposed the concept of IDY to the UN, will be in attendance. Police officers, military service members, scouts, and students are among the locals who participate in the festivities.
Naturally, the United Nations holds its own IDY events at its headquarters in New York. This year, it’s an evening yoga session on the North Lawn of the UN on June 20, followed by a conversation with yoga masters on June 21.
Lululemon Toronto hosts this evening IDY event to learn about and share the benefits of yoga for all experience levels. It begins with an hour-long practice led by Jodi Fischtein with music by DJ Carmelinda Dimanno. A panel discussion on “the power of practice” follows, during which three Toronto residents talk about how yoga transformed their lives and the community.
This London event at the Hale Clinic includes public talks, yoga workshops, and meditation sessions. Learn easy relaxation techniques, hear about how chanting can deepen your practice, and find out how to purify your mind and body while getting rid of bad karma.
Resort town Antibes is home to this French IDY soirée. The free 75-minute yoga class will be followed by a 45-minute sound meditation by sound therapist Gerald Bordier of sound therapy association Guéris Sounds.
Yoga is so much more than poses. At the India Cultural Center’s IDY event in Sydney you can learn kirtan (recitation), take time for meditation, and hear about the wonders of mantra chanting, all for free on June 21.
On Madeira Island, an oasis in the middle of the Atlantic, yoga teacher Emilie Mangoni offers a special outdoor IDY yoga practice with 360-degree views and live music at the Galo Resort Hotel.
The Sakthi School of Yoga hosts a mini-retreat at Chin Swee Caves Temple Genting in honor of IDY. Up to 200 practitioners of all levels will partake in this serene practice of sun salutations, postures, and the philosophy of yoga.
For those who can’t make it, there’s also a virtual event called the International Day of Yoga Run Challenge that encourages Malaysians to run a 5K and take a photo of themselves in a yoga pose with the hashtag #YOGARUNMY.
Singapore blocks off an entire week for people to enjoy IDY events. Participating venues are as diverse as a Buddhist temple, the Hindi Society, and the Swiss Club.
Participants at this Chulalongkorn University event in Bangkok not only get to gaze at royal statues of King Chulalongkorn and King Vajiravudh while doing asana, they also receive a complimentary t-shirt, yoga mat, refreshments, and water.