Hundreds of yogis celebrate Yoga Day in Manila

Over 200 yogis participated in the annual celebration of the International Day of Yoga led by the Indian Embassy in Manila on Wednesday.

Indian Ambassador to the Philippines Shambhu Kumaran joined in the event, noting that the 5,000-year-old practice is also gaining popularity in the country as an effective method for well-being and prophylaxis in the post-pandemic set up.

The celebration was held with the theme, “Yoga for Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam,” which means “Yoga for the world is one family.” The event, which is on its 9th year, resumed last year in Manila after a two-year gap due to the pandemic.

In leading the celebration, Kumaran highlighted Yoga’s importance by saying it “is India's civilizational pathway to wellness.”

“It is a way of managing stress, of preventing disease and enhancing your health levels overall. And therefore, in this stage when you know people are recovering from COVID, it is particularly important that people try and do more activities that look after their health,” he told reporters at the event.

Yoga, which originated in ancient Indian Civilization, has now become a practice that transcends cultural and geographic borders, according to the embassy.

As a key pathway towards sustaining a healthy lifestyle across the world and in recognition of its universal appeal, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 21 June as International Day of Yoga in December 2014, it added.

The embassy said Yoga continues to rise in popularity in the Philippines and has helped generate a healthy lifestyle for local practitioners.

In fact, it added, several Filipino Yoga practitioners have visited India for training, thereby deepening the people-to-people cultural exchanges between India and the Philippines.

“India hopes that enhancing the reach of the healing practice of Yoga, through the annual celebration of International Day of Yoga and other activities, will make a meaningful contribution in this regard,” it added.