28 June 2017

Yoga is Always There with You: Conversation on Yoga for Health

“Yoga is about our ability to feel yoga in our souls, to connect it to our minds and to integrate […] with nature and the planet”—so Dr. Nata Menabde, Executive Director of the New York office of the World Health Organization (WHO) in her opening remarks to  the “Conversation on Yoga for Health” held on 21 June 2017 at United Nations Headquarters in New York.

The conversation, organized by the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations in association with WHO and the Department of Public Information, provided participants a more complete picture of the concept of yoga and how this 5,000-year old practice from India can benefit health and well-being.

Six panelists from different backgrounds shared their experience with yoga and helped the audience experience something of the yoga culture: yoga masters Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji and Swami Sivadasananda shared insights on their life led by yoga with the audience while Stanton Kawer, CEO of Bluechip Marketing Worldwide, talked about how yoga can positively impact businesses. Two more points of view were presented by Anupam Kher, actor and social activist and Keith Mitchell, former NFL football player.

Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji closed the 2-hour discussion with a passionate appeal to “move from medication to meditation,” promoting yoga as a part of medical treatment. The WHO has itself already begun to incorporate yoga into universal healthcare approaches.