The International Day of Yoga (IDY) celebrations sought to symbolize the unity of humanity as people from around the world gathered on June 21 in unique observance of an Indian proposal sponsored by 177 nations and endorsed by all 193 UN members. In various parts of Melbourne, yoga enthusiast took to the mat to perform the various asanas drawn from a millennia-old science of the body and mind. The International Day of Yoga on June 21 was an unprecedented demonstration of India’s soft power as tens of thousands across the world, besides millions in India, performed yoga.
The Melbourne Chapter of the Art of Living Foundation celebrating and promoting the physical and mental health benefits derived from Yoga for individuals and communities nationally on June 21, the International Yoga Day at Moonee Valley Racecourse.
Guru Rajendra Dodara Yenkannamoole, founder of the Vasudeva Kriya Yoga in Melbourne, led hundreds of yogis to the mat at Springers Centre. He had prepared for this event for six months along with the Consulate General of India, Melbourne.
Consul General Manika Jain lights the lamp before the events take off at Springers Centre.
People of all races and religions, nationalities and political persuasions joined to perform yoga on the shores of New York’s East River. Elizabeth Resch, an Austrian intern at the UN office working on developing the post-2015 development agenda, said yoga can integrate the world and make it a better place.
A record-breaking nearly 36,000 people, led by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, took part in the main early morning event at Rajpath in the heart of New Delhi. India notched two world records on the inaugural IDY at Rajpath — for the most number of participants in a yoga lesson with 35,985 at Rajpath — and for the most number of nationalities attending a yoga lesson — with people from 84 countries participating at Rajpath.