YOGA RATNA AWARD – The Oscar of Yoga
Today we all feel proud of the fact that Yoga originated in India. However, we hardly pay any heed to the fact that the reason why yoga is still accessible to us is because of the relentless efforts of numerous yoga schools, yoga gurus and yoga enthusiasts. They are the ones who have continued spreading the light in a world that’s enveloped with anger, hate, stress, problems and what not. To make sure these wonderful contributions do not go unnoticed, Shwaasa Yoga School has taken the initiative to recognize these contributors by felicitating them with the ‘Yoga Ratna’ award. We are committed to paying tribute and respect to all those, who have given the ancient science a way to reach out to each and every individual on the planet.
Making this highly prestigious award ceremony a part of the ‘International Yoga Day’ celebrations (on 21st June), we conduct the award ceremony on the night of 20th June. There are different nomination categories and the winner of each category is awarded with the Yoga Ratna statuette, a yogi in Garudasana pose along with other prizes.
We started this felicitation program when 21st of June was declared the International Yoga Day by the United Nations. So far, numerous eminent personalities have been awarded by Shwaasa for their significant contributions to yoga.
Yoga Ratna Awardees 2019
Sri Sivananda Baba Ji, Sivananda Ashram, West Bengal
A 123 years old yogi with exceptional physical and mental agility! He was born in 1896 and has crossed the age of the current Guinness World Record Holder Jiroemon Kimura, the oldest man alive. He has no disease, desires or depression but rather multiple talents like conversing in English without having any formal education ever, can read and write well without his spectacles. The reason behind his unbelievable health is Yoga. Baba Ji believes in eating simple, living humble, and being compassionate. He lives in his ashram at Varanasi, and his favorite hobby is to help people in distress.
He said: “When we see the earth from space, we cannot find any division of the state. Similarly, when we reach the highest platform of spirituality, we cannot find any division of religion.”
Swami Pranavananda Bhramendra Avadhuta (Holy CEO- Christian Fabre Textiles Pvt. Ltd Chennai)
A businessman who turned to a monk and the same monk who now runs a business – describes the life of Swami Pranavananda Bhramendra Avadhuta who was once known as Christian Fabre from France.
With a life that aimed to serve the Lord, at the tender age of 13, Faber’s father marked the end of his spiritual pursuit. But then, after years, the drive ignited and he embarked upon the journey of Sadhana. Living a distorted life for years, the final help came in the form of The Gospel of Paramahansa Ramakrishna, and he realized that truth can’t be found in the material world, but inside.
He then immersed deeper into the concept of Dharma, practiced yoga, and meditation that helped him to restore his health and demeanor. He adapted Hinduism in 1986 when he met Guru Shree Sarveshwara Swamigal and became Avadhuta- one who lives in the nude.
The guru also advised him to find a spiritual practice in his textile business. Fabre then in 1995 made his transition to a sadhu and set up his ashram near Salem in Tamil Nadu. The journey of this Frenchman turned Sadhu has a lot to it- and he always says that he is destined towards the path, and would have lived the same way when asked if he wants to change anything from the past.
Ekara Devi Nath (Founder Ayur Vital Yoga, Argentina)
Yoga and spirituality run in the genes of Ekara Debo Nath who was born as Paola Alejandra Rios in Argentina. An artistic soul, Rios was born and raised in a yogic family, in an environment of high esteem for ancestral knowledge and holistic care for self. Becoming the reason, she met her Master Shree Dev Hansa Nath in her childhood.
Her love for art also played a great role in beading the links towards the holistic journey. She studied architecture and nutrition and also won the championship of International Spirits Yoga Competition in Argentina at the age of 17. There was no turning back for her from the spiritual path of yoga, and while constantly achieving milestones, she reached the grade of Yogacharini at the age of 18.
She represented her country in 1997 as a speaker at the International Congress Unity in Yoga, in Aspen USA. She also traveled through the USA making exhibitions and developed Ayur Yoga System as well as founded Ayur Yoga Vital International School with branches in 50 locations across the globe.
She dedicated her life to transmit the teachings of Natha Siddha lineage. She constantly travels the world, giving lectures and spreading the teachings of Ayur Yoga, especially in the USA and Europe.
Ekara Devi Nath is recognized as one of the most remarkable women in the history of Latin American yoga.
BNS Iyengar (Mysore Krishnamacharr Yoga Foundation)
BNS Iyengar was introduced to yoga at the tender age of 13. He met an eminent yoga scholar, and under his guidance, he assimilated the teachings of the ancient art within a period of 12 years. At the age of 28, he finally met Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya, the Guru of Ashtanga Vinyasa system whose teaching imbibes Patanjali Yoga system and is also known as the father of modern yoga. He also studied directly from Sri K. Pattabhi Jois.
Guruji has practiced yoga for 70 years. The 92 years old yogi is a living legend and the oldest living teacher of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga. He is a last living disciple of Krishnamacharya – a direct link to the traditional and cultural paradigm of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga.
A Sanskrit Scholar, Guruji is a teacher in Mysore who has a vast knowledge of ancient scriptures connected with yoga and conveys the authentic traditional views of the ancient art to his students through chanting and amazing stories. Learning under his guidance feels like traveling back in time to learn the secrets of yoga, old school style.
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