Why International Yoga Day Matters
The effort to bring the spiritual process to the world, and particularly to those individuals who have a big influence upon the rest of the world, has been on for a long time. Ashtavakra enlightened Janaka around eight thousand years ago. Krishna’s whole life’s mission was to marry the spiritual process and the political process. Krishna not only worked with kings, he also established over a thousand ashrams across the northern plains of India.
Yoga essentially means that in search of wellbeing, you don’t look up. Because if you look up, you will hallucinate, you will start imagining things which are not in your experience. And above all, you do not know which is up and which is down. In the last hundred and fifty years, most of humanity looked up, and a small segment looked out – gathering wealth and building palaces. But today, a large part of humanity is looking out instead of up. If we look out for human wellbeing, we will destroy the very basis of our existence, which is what we are doing. We have different names for this – ecological problems, global warming, climate change – but human beings are just looking out in pursuit of wellbeing. That is all it is. The only ultimate solution, and the only way human beings will truly know wellbeing, is by turning inward. This is what yoga means. Not up, not out, but in. The only way out is in.
For some time, we have been working with political, economic and academic leaders because they have a certain amount of influence over the wellbeing and lives of others. About eleven years ago, in our Wholeness Program, somebody said, “Sadhguru, all this is great but what about the country? What about the nation?” So I said, “We have a list of two thousand people who can make a difference for this country. You get me these two thousand people, you will see that a wonderful change will happen.” During these years, I think we have touched around forty percent of these two thousand people. They are making a quiet change.
And now, a situation has come where the leaders of nations are speaking about yoga. Not just in India, but in the highest international body – the United Nations. Two minutes of our Prime Minister’s speech at the UN was about yoga. Seven minutes of his interaction with the President of the United States was about yoga. This has never happened before. One hundred and seventy-five out of one hundred and ninety-three countries pitched behind the resolution to be passed for International Yoga Day on June 21.
We definitely want to do something for International Yoga Day that will make a big impact on the planet. We want to offer simple yoga to the world that every human being can do. Something that gets people in tune immediately and brings a certain harmony to the system. From there, we can offer more and more elaborate forms of yoga. We are looking at about one hundred locations where large-scale yoga programs will happen from morning until evening. You can volunteer at these locations or you can do your own thing somewhere else. And if do your own thing, we will equip you with a simple video. You can at least make sure ten different people learn some form of simple yoga on that day – after one, five or seven minutes of yoga, a subtle transformative process will begin.
International Yoga Day means the whole world should do some type of yoga. Let us make it happen!