International Day of Yoga

On June 21st every year, we will celebrate International Day of Yoga, IDY, all over the world!

Yoga is humanity’s birthright. It is the path to find our union with the whole of creation! We are not alone in this universe; our lives are in an intricate dance with the sun, the moon, and all the other living and non-living beings.

IDY is a reminder to recall that the seeming differences between nations, religions, and traditions are only on the surface. This day is another opportunity to dissolve all these seeming differences, which is the highest goal of yoga practices. People, on this day, practice together to experience the Power of Harmony—union with one’s own body, breath and mind, and also union with all beings in the world. All of these are only to experience our innate potentiality, our highest purpose in life!

The Power of Harmony is Amrita Yoga’s theme for IDY-International Day of Yoga.

group photo kids for IDY 2017 amrita yoga

On the First International Day of Yoga, our beloved Amma,
Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi
was in Santa Fe and addressed her children,

“Today is International Day of Yoga. Previously, people did not need to have a special day for performing yoga because it was part and parcel of their lives. Unfortunately, now we need a special day to remind us to perform yoga, just as we need a day to remember our mother and father.”

amma pic for IDY 2017 amrita yoga

Amma asked everyone to celebrate IDY by practicing a few simple asanas, and she gave a satsanga about the benefits of practicing surya namaskarah.

As the earth makes its yearly journey around the sun, the cycles of life reach their apex when the sun is at its peak height around June 21st. Since ancient times, people all over this beautiful earth have known this as an auspicious day to honour the sun. The sun was rightfully worshipped for its life-sustaining influence. In Yoga, the Sun, or Lord Surya, represents the Universal Supreme Consciousness that illuminates everything.

amma pic for IDY 2017 amrita yoga

Amma is a living example of the path of yoga on Earth today. She is tirelessly committed to improving the lives of people on our planet. She embraces all people, making no distinctions between people and their beliefs. Amma also upholds the ancient traditions of living in harmony with nature and with each other.

The harmony between oneself and nature is a constant focus of Amrita Yoga. When body, breath, mind, intellect and soul resonate in harmony through yoga practices, then the individual consciousness unites with the Universal Consciousness, the individual ego and mind dissolve to radiate the radiance of the Supreme Consciousness.

Amma’s Address to the First ‪International Day of Yoga (IDY)

“Today is the International Day of Yoga. Previously people did not need to have a special day for yoga because yoga was part and parcel of their lives. Unfortunately now we need a special day to remind us to perform yoga, just as we need a day to remember our mother and father. "In the olden days, people would wake up in the morning, bow down to mother Earth and then, facing the sun, they would chant prayers and perform Surya Namaskarah.    Today in many countries, six or seven out of ten people have a Vitamin D deficiency. It is postulated that a Vitamin D deficiency may be one of the precipitating factors for Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia. Some may argue that even people with a normal Vitamin D level can get Alzheimer’s disease. This is true, but studies have shown that the majority of people with this disease have a Vitamin D deficiency. It is also thought to be a cause of depression, which may be why the incidence of depressive disorders is higher in countries that have less sunlight. “Yoga is beneficial for our health, physical beauty and mental discipline. It reduces cholesterol levels and maintains cardiac health. It increases bone strength, now especially important as the incidence of arthritis and osteoporosis is on a steep rise. It improves memory. “It is important to do a balanced exercise for at least ten minutes a day. Along with this, we also need at least 10 minutes of sun exposure per...

The 3rd International Day of Yoga

The 3rd International Day of Yoga (IDY) on June 21st, 2017 was a great success. IDY has a very interesting history. Let’s look at the genesis and development of this international cultural celebration. A United Nations Resolution Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is promoting yoga as a way to celebrate India’s rich and ancient spiritual culture. Yoga in its many forms is a beautiful expression of Indian cultural wisdom. In 2014, at his first address to the UN General Assembly, P.M. Modi proposed a resolution for an International Day of Yoga (IDY): “Yoga is an invaluable gift of India’s ancient tradition. It embodies unity of mind and body, thought and action, restraint and fulfillment, harmony between man and nature, and a holistic approach to health and well being. It is not merely an exercise. Its primary purpose is to facilitate the sense of oneness with ourselves, the world and nature. By changing our lifestyle and adopting skilled means to achieve higher states of consciousness, we take full control of our own well being. Let us work towards adopting an International Yoga Day.” ~ Hon. PM Narendra Modi September 2014, Address to the United Nations General Assembly The IDY Resolution was adopted by the UN General Assembly on 11 December, 2014. The resolution was passed within a record time of 75 days, and was supported by 177 countries. This was the highest number of co-sponsors ever for any UNGA resolution of this nature. It was passed unopposed and without a vote. In his UN address, P.M. Modi suggested that IDY be observed on June 21st. In 2015 this was the...

The Power of Harmony; #IDY2017

The Power of Harmony On the First International Day of Yoga (#Yoga4Harmony), our beloved Amma, Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi addressed her children. Here are a few lines from Amma’s message: “Today is International Day of Yoga. Previously, people did not need to have a special day for performing yoga because it was part and parcel of their lives. Unfortunately, now we need a special day to remind us to perform yoga, just as we need a day to remember our mother and father." Amma was in Santa Fe on June 21st, 2015 for the very first International Day of Yoga. Amma asked everyone to celebrate IDY by practicing a few simple asanas, and she gave a satsanga about the benefits of practicing surya namaskarah. On June 21st every year, we will celebrate International Day of Yoga, IDY (#IDY2017), all over the world! This celebration of IDY was initiated at the United Nations General Assembly on December 11th, 2014 by Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to remind the world that yoga is a gift from India to the world—one that unifies all people in harmony. Yoga is humanity's birthright. It is the path to find our union with the whole of creation! We are not alone in this universe; our lives are in an intricate dance with the sun, the moon, and all the other living and non-living beings. Yoga is a system that teaches us that this whole Universe is a manifestation of the Universal Supreme Consciousness. As human beings, we have the potential to lift ourselves out of our small, limited, individual abilities to an expansive awareness...

The Power of Harmony: Celebrating IDY2016

On June 21st 2016, we will once again celebrate International Day of Yoga all over the world!   This celebration of Yoga was initiated at the United Nations General Assembly on December 11th 2014 by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to remind the world that Yoga is a gift from the India to the world, one that unifies all people in harmony. As he stated:   "Yoga is an invaluable gift of India's ancient tradition. It embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfillment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and nature.”   On this day, the differences between nations, religions, and traditions will be dissolved, and people will come together to do Yoga to experience the power of harmony—to experience the strength that union with the world and with our highest potential expresses!   This year is especially auspicious for Amma’s children as Amrita Yoga has been chosen to help coordinate the promotion, propagation and execution of all IDY activities in India by the Ministry of AYUSH and the MDNIY, an institution under the Ministry. This means that any organization in India that wants to celebrate the International Day of Yoga can approach Mata Amritanandamayi Math and consult Amrita Yoga to implement the protocol for participation.   Over the past few months, Amrita Yoga has been training Yoga Ambassadors in preparation for the celebration. For example, on June 7th, a two-day training camp was held for about fifty teachers at Ettimadai Amrita...

Amrita Yoga of Mata Amritanandamayi Math, Amritapuri, Kerala, India was appointed in 2015 by the Indian Ministry of AYUSH and the MDNIY to help coordinate promotion, propagation, and execution of all IDY activities in India and all over the world.

IDY logo english amrita yoga

This means that any organization wanting to celebrate the International Day of Yoga could approach Mata Amritanandamayi Math and Amrita Yoga for support to celebrate.