International Yoga Day 2024 Celebrated Across the Globe

Thousands of yoga enthusiasts worldwide unfurled their mats to participate in day-long sessions of the ancient Indian discipline, marking the 10th International Day of Yoga on Friday.

Acknowledging its global resonance, the United Nations declared June 21 as the International Day of Yoga in December 2014. The proposal for the International Day of Yoga was put forward by India and received support from a record-breaking 175 member states in the UN General Assembly.

Geneva

Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, a global spiritual leader, humanitarian, and founder of The Art of Living, spearheaded the Yoga Day Celebrations at the United Nations Headquarters in Geneva, which took place over June 20 and 21. Additionally, The Art of Living, in collaboration with the Ministry of Ayush, conducted celebrations at various locations throughout India.

On June 20, during the keynote address at the UN, Gurudev shared, “It’s time for this ancient art of inner blossoming to be in the spotlight. Yoga has proved to be a boon for humankind. We have seen it helps heal illnesses, resolve problems, increase resilience, make the mind happy and sharpen the intellect. Yoga should be done along with pranayamas and meditation, without which yogasanas remain just physical exercises.”

In Japan

The Indian Embassy in Japan hosted the Yoga Day celebrations at the Tsukiji Hongwanji Temple, attracting significant participation from across the nation, including diplomats and members of the Indian diaspora. Despite the heavy rain, Tokyo marked the 10th International Day of Yoga on Friday.

In Israel

More than three hundred individuals from across Israel unfurled their yoga mats and performed asanas during the International Yoga Day celebrations held at the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation in Tel Aviv. The First Lady, Michal Herzog, graced the main event on Thursday as the chief guest. A multitude of events took place throughout the nation.

The Embassy of India in Israel, in collaboration with the Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality and the Ministry of Culture and Sports of Israel, organized the event.

In Kuwait

On Friday, the Indian embassy in Kuwait observed a moment of silence to honor the 45 Indians who perished in the tragic fire incident in Mangaf. Concurrently, the embassy hosted an event to commemorate the International Day of Yoga.

In Nepal

The Embassy of India in Nepal on Thursday organised yoga demonstrations at three iconic landmarks of Pokhara, the tourism capital of the country.

“What better way to spread the message of #YogaForSelfAndSociety than to assimilate Yoga, Nature and Spirituality! @IndiaInNepal organised yoga demonstrations at 3 iconic landmarks of #Pokhara, the tourism capital of Nepal,” it tweeted.

In New York

The Consulate General of India in New York, in collaboration with the Times Square Alliance, organized special yoga sessions at Times Square. Despite heat advisories for the New York region, with daytime temperatures reaching up to 33.8°C, individuals of various backgrounds and nationalities gathered early on Thursday morning to unroll their yoga mats at this iconic New York City landmark.

“India’s gift to the world”: Foreign diplomats 

During the International Day of Yoga, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar practised yoga with diplomats in the national capital, highlighting that yoga has become a significant link among different cultures in fostering international relations. EAM Jaishankar and other diplomats participated in a yoga session in Delhi on Friday.

The UK’s High Commissioner to India, Lindy Cameron, underscored that Yoga is India’s gift to the world.

Jaishankar expressed his delight, “Today, I was very pleased to witness so many diplomats, ambassadors, and colleagues from the foreign ministry come together for the Yoga session.”

The Australian High Commissioner to India, Philip Green, stated that over a million Australians globally practice yoga. He shared a post on social media, displaying videos of yoga enthusiasts from the Australian High Commission executing their preferred asanas in the national capital.

The Israeli embassy in India shared a post on social media X, showcasing the video of their diplomats saying why they love Yoga.
“Namaste! SHlvm This #InternationalYogaDay, our diplomats share why they LOVE #yoga. They might not be yogis yet, but they sure have fun trying! Tell us in the comments why YOU love yoga,” the embassy stated on X.

This year’s Yoga Day theme, “Yoga for Self and Society,” emphasizes yoga‘s vital role in fostering both individual well-being and societal harmony.

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