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New York City Takes Cue from India, Gears Up for International Yoga Day

International Yoga Day 2017 is seeing a spate of preparations around the world


Updated:June 20, 2017, 10:06 AM IST
New York City Takes Cue from India, Gears Up for International Yoga Day
Celebrated on June 21, International Yoga Day 2017 has a range of events taking place across the globe. (Photo courtesy: AFP Relaxnews)

An animated yoga asana show lit up the iconic glass face of the UN headquarters on Sunday ahead of the Third International Yoga Day (IYD) celebrations in New York City this week. Actor and activist Anupam Kher, who turned on the light show, said, "It's great, great feeling, personally for me as an Indian, as a citizen of the world and (with the global recognition of) yoga today."

A ‘Yoga Session with Yoga Masters’ is planned for today, the eve of IYD, at the UN with mass participation of diplomats, staff and visitors. The session is an annual event since the first celebrations in 2015 after the UN had declared June 21 as IYD the previous year.

This year it is to be conducted by Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji and Sadhvi Bhagwati Sarawastiji of the Paramarta Niketan Ashram, Rishikesh, India, and Swami Sivadasananda of the Sivananda Yoga Retreat House, Austria. On Wednesday, a forum on yoga and health is to be held at the UN with an international panel of swamis and yoga practitioners. Chidanand Saraswatiji, Bhagwati Sarawastiji, Sivadasananda, Keith Mitchel, a yoga practitioner and former US National Football League star, Stanton Kawer, a US business executive, and Kher are the scheduled speakers.

As part of the IYD celebrations, the UN Postal Administration is issuing a set of 10 stamps each depicting a different asana. The ten stamps of $1.15 denomination each depict a different yoga pose next to a large Om in Devanagari script.

New York's Times Square, billed as the crossroads of the world, is holding the annual ‘Mind over Madness Yoga’ celebrations on Wednesday, which is also the Summer Solstice in the northern hemisphere. Up to 10,000 people have participated in the past in the all-day event that brings a solemn hush to the frenetic pace of Times Square every year.

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