International Yoga Day 2017 At Shwaasa: Everything About That Day

 

Summary: Divulge in key details of International Yoga Day 2017  celebrated at Shwaasa through this web-blog.

Several renowned yoga schools and eminent teachers have worked relentlessly to preserve the rich heritage of yoga and various yoga styles. One such school is shwaasa who organizes the International Yoga Day every year since its inception under the guidance of inspirational and popular figure Shwaasa Guru Sri Vachananda Swamiji.  With an effort to spread the wisdom of yoga across the globe and to encourage people to take an elemental step towards healthy life and goodness the International Yoga Day 2017 at Shwaasa was organized in the garden city ‘Bangalore’. It was truly a star-studded event which witnessed the presence of some of the globe’s oldest yoga teachers Tao Porchon Lynch, 98 and Amma Nanammal, 97 inspiring millions of them through their knowledge and practice. Lynch is an acclaimed author and Nanammal is a yoga practitioner and teacher based in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India.  The principal guest for the program was Anna Hazare, an avid practitioner of  yoga. The previous editions were graced by popular celebrities and yoga followers Shilpa Shetty (2015) and Bipasha Basu ( 2016). Held in the Kanteerava Outdoor stadium, the event recorded a footfall of 5,000 practitioners making it grander than before. Having said this, Shwaasa plans to go extravagant with the next edition of International Yoga Day where even more number of International Yoga Stars and Guinness World Record Holders shall grace the occasion.

Yoga Ratna Awards were organized as a part of International Yoga Day to pay tribute to the greatest yoga masters of the globe. Yoga Ratna Awards are given annually by the Shwaasa organization to venerated yoga masters. Yoga Ratna is for excellence in Yoga and Yoga Sammana is for significant contributions in yoga.

A student often speaks about Shwaasa Guru’s aplomb, respectful and warm nature that has won several hearts. He also proudly mentions how his savoir-faire talent, ability to organize mega events with finesse overwhelm them. Further, the students are floored by the Shwaasa Guru’s confidence, enthusiasm, and high vitality. They also speak about a heartwarming quality of Swami Vachananda Ji similar to Swami Veda Bharati, both of them like people, care of them and loves to interact with children. His generosity attracts the human race and his teachings have a profound impact on them.  Sri Swami Vachananda Ji is not only a great teacher but is also a devoted disciple and a keen learner. He bears immense respect for his Gurus, seniors and never places himself as a competitor to them. He always seeks their blessings and considers himself as a junior who is a part of a team teaching yoga to the world.

Swamiji’s statement “ Everyone knows that yoga came to Kannada from the Himalayas and the north, but our saint Basavanna contributed one practice that I am also teaching, and that is trataka of the Istha Linga. This means that spirituality is deeply embedded in your personality and you shall teach more and more people about the science of yoga and its roots in divinity. May the blessings of your Guruva be upon you. Jai Radhe!” Is most liked by his student Jagadananda Das. His only wish for his Yoga Guru Swami Vachananda Ji is to avoid the many pitfalls and to continue the good work.

At the event, a theme on ‘non-religious nature of yoga’  came up and Sri M. made a point that even an atheist can be a yogi. To this Jagadananda Das said, “yoga makes everything better– it makes eating, sleeping, work and studying better–it’s about improving life. It is true that one can be atheist and can practice yoga, but the ultimate improvement in life is to know God. So, yoga improves one’s religious endeavors too.”

Later, he thanked Shwaasa Guru for reviving his Hatha Yoga Practice. He was also thankful to the Guru for assisting, supervising him during the video shoot as he suffered a sudden attack of amoebic dysentery. Moreover, he shared his experience of meeting Yoga Ratna Award winners Pilot Baba and Keiko Aikawa. He briefly mentioned about his roommate from Haridwar Swami Ishwarananda.

Lastly, with immense pleasure, he talked about Tao Porchon lynch and her incomparable energy and awareness. how she is a living testimonial to the benefits of the lifelong practice of yoga asanas and meditation. At the International Yoga day, she was constantly demonstrating yoga asanas like Sarvangasana, Matsyendrasana and even performed a ballroom dance number for the spectators with a bright smile on her face. He divulged a key detail about Tao Porchon that she always wear High Heels.  She was accompanied by Teresa-Kay Aba Kennedy, her student. She has done Ph.D. from Harvard University and is a first person to own a yoga studio in Harlem.

The celebrated International Yoga Day 2017 in the guiding light of yoga luminaries highlighted the fact that the science of yoga is a holistic approach to maintaining harmony between the mind and body.

 

 

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

Weekend Yoga Classes

In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

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In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!

International Yoga Day & Yoga Ratna Awards-2017 by Jagadananda Das

Shwaasa Guru Ji had been asking me to come to Bangalore to visit for some time and this year he asked me to come for the Yoga Ratna award ceremonies that he has been organizing for a couple of years on International Yoga Day, June 21. I was to receive a “Yoga Sammana” award.

I was very impressed by Shwaasa Guru’s aplomb and natural talent in public, his way of dealing respectfully and warmly with all his guests, his savoir-faire in organizing and managing this large event, and many other good qualities I observed in him. In my short acceptance speech, I stated my appreciation for him. I said he may call me “guruji” because I once taught him English, but he is a Swami and I am merely a Dasa.

Later I wrote the following:
You are a natural, Shwaasa Guru, you have no doubts about your mission. You are confident and enthusiastic, and I noticed you also have a quality I saw in Swami Veda Bharati: you likepeople, you care about people. You talk with children. People sense that and it attracts them to you.

What is good is that you are still young and have so much energy. So in the years to come, I am sure that you will have a tremendous impact on teaching yoga to the world.

I also like the way you have respect for your gurus. I like that you seek out seniors in the yoga and Hindu world and ask for their blessings. You are teaching correctly by doing so. You don’t place yourself as a competitor to them or a critic, but as a junior member of a great team that is teaching yoga to the world.

I also very much liked your statement: “Everyone knows that yoga came to Kannada from the Himalayas and the north, but our saint Basavanna contributed one practice at least that I am also teaching, and that is tratak of the Istha linga.” This is very good because in the future it means that you will teach more and more the spiritual side of your tradition, which I know is very deeply embedded in your personality and is probably where you derive most of your energy. What else can I say, except may the blessings of all your Guruvarga be upon you. Jai Radhe!

After I finished, he whispered to me, “You made my day.” I thought that was very sweet of him. I certainly do hope for the best for him, I only worry that for a young, charismatic sannyasi, the pitfalls are many. If he can avoid them, he will do great things.

A theme that came up repeatedly was the “non-religious” nature of yoga. Shri M, for instance, made a point of saying that even an atheist can be a yogi. My response to this was that yoga makes everything better — it makes eating, sleeping, work and study better — so it is about improving life. It is true that one can be an atheist and practice yoga, but the ultimate improvement in life is to know God. So the thing that yoga improves most of all is one’s religious endeavor.

I am also thankful to Shwaasa Guru  for reviving my hatha practice. I was a little embarrassed when he said he wanted to do a video of me doing asanas. I told him that I was really a bhakti-yogi, so not to emphasize the hatha too much. But he came with his crew and supervised the shooting of the video, even coming several times to fix my cloth.

Usually I do my asanas only dressed in a kaupin, so I don’t have the usual yoga-pants wardrobe. When I came to Bangalore, I asked for something to wear for the video and they gave me orange shorts and a teashirt with the ashram logo, which did not fill me with enthusiasm. But Swamiij pulled out a white cloth from his drawer and showed me how he transforms his sannyas dhoti into a suitable cloth for doing asanas. Rather looks like a big diaper. It kept coming undone, though, while I was doing the poses, so Swamiji kept coming up to me after almost every asana to help put it right.
Since I hadn’t been doing my hatha practice regularly I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to do much. What happened, though, is that I was very sick for the 36 hours before this film was taken. I had a sudden attack of amoebic dysentery and so I had been fasting, involuntarily. The end result was that I lost a bit of the weight I had been putting on and this also made more supple than I had been in quite a while.

In the hotel I met Pilot Baba and his disciple, Keiko Akawa, who were both given Yoga Ratna awards. I shared my room with Swami Ishwar Ananda, who came with them from Haridwar. The principal guest at the program was Anna Hazare, who at 80 still practices yoga every day.

The real star of the show, however, was undoubtedly Tao Porchon-Lynch, who at 98 is still a real dynamo. She has incomparable energy and awareness for one of her age. She is a living testimonial to the benefits of a lifelong practice of yoga asanas and meditation. As the central attraction at the Yoga Day festivities over several days, she was constantly sitting for newspaper and television interviews, demonstrating asanas like sarvangasan, matsyasan and so on for the spectators, and she even did a ballroom dance number! And the bright smile never left her face for a moment. And she always wears high-heels!

She was accompanied by Teresa Kay-Aba Kennedy, her student and a very interesting person in her own right. Among other things, she has a PhD from Harvard and spent years working in the private sector. She was the first person to open a yoga studio in Harlem. She now has her “life coach” business, but at present spends most of her time traveling with and helping take care of Tao, with whom she co-wrote the memoirs, Dancing Light.

By: Jagadananda Das

 

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

Weekend Yoga Classes

In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

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Experience Purity And Inner Bliss This Fall

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Daily Schedule

Date Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
07:45 |1| 08:35 Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson
08:35 |2| 09:25 Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson
09:30 |3| 10:20 Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson
10:35 |4| 11:25 Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson
11:30 |5| 12:20 Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson Lesson

Food & Accommodation

In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!

It all began about four decades ago, in a small village named Tanvashi from Karnataka State in Southern India. In a pious and traditional family of farmers a married couple named, Dundappa and Shivakka, longed for a male successor of their family.

In the breathtaking and treacherous landscape of the mighty Himalayas, a young monk wandered in search of the ultimate truth. Through intense penance and meditation that put mind over a matter not only did he uncover the truth; but also realized the very purpose of his life!