Yoga and ayurveda are gifts of ancient India to the world. Yoga has become a way of life for millions across the world and is immensely popular among all communities in Oman. Its popularity in Oman can be attested by the enthusiastic participation in various yoga events organised by the embassy.
Yoga connects body, mind and soul. It is well established that yoga poses help in improving blood circulation, activate internal organs and help in detoxification, thereby improving immunity levels. Experts also say that transmission of chemicals in the body known as ‘happiness hormones’, is drastically improved through correct yoga postures, alleviating stress and anxiety. Calming and mindfulness practices that are an integral part of yoga are a natural way of fighting depression.
Ayurveda is generally defined as ‘the science of life’ and is based on developing harmony between soul, senses and intellect, which leads to optimal health. The principles of ayurveda are well aligned with the definition of health propagated by the World Health Organization (WHO), which also defines health as a complete state of physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
Every year in June, the world celebrates International Day of Yoga (IDY) with great enthusiasm. In 2019, IDY celebrations in Oman witnessed participation of over 6,000 individuals under one roof. However, last year, due to COVID-19, the celebrations had to be done virtually. This year too, we are celebrating IDY under the shadow of COVID-19.
There have been positive developments in humanity’s fight against COVID-19, most notably the discovery and administration of vaccines. However, the threat to public heath by COVID-19 still remains high. The pandemic has affected millions of lives, with mental and psychological impact being as grave as the physical ailment. In such times, along with vaccination and precautions, having strong immunity and sound mental health are key to fighting this disease effectively. Yoga can help develop a strong immune system, and provide an effective, accessible and affordable means to fight the negative impacts of COVID-19.
This year, the theme of IDY is ‘Be with Yoga: Be at Home’. The theme encourages us to follow COVID-19 precautions, stay motivated and adopt a healthy lifestyle.
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, in his letter addressed to His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik on the occasion of the seventh IDY, stated that “yoga is good for community, immunity and unity” and this year’s theme “reflects the concern for the good health and well being of people across the globe”.
The Embassy of India has organised a series of events virtually in association with various yoga organisations to celebrate IDY this year. I would like to thank all the yoga organisations for their initiatives and support as well as all the yoga enthusiasts who have actively participated in these events.
The embassy will organise the main celebration on Saturday, June 19, 5pm onwards which will be streamed live on our social media platforms.
I invite all the people in Oman to join us and celebrate the International Day of Yoga with their families.
(H E Munu Mahawar, Ambassador of India to the Sultanate of Oman)