About Sunita Aron
After hibernating for over a decade, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad is back playing the Rama temple dhun.
It is certainly not in tune with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent assuran [Read more]
Sometimes even healthy moves become unpalatable when seen through myopic lens.
The ongoing controversy over the upcoming International Yoga Day on June 21 elucidates the point as the Yoga Day is not about ideologies or manifestoes but your health.
Yoga is also not about personal laws or Narendra Modi’s political health and it has nothing to do with any religion or culture. May be Modi conceptualised the idea but it was the General Assembly of the United Nations that declared June 21 as International Yoga Day after recognising Yoga’s holistic approach to health and wellbeing. UN would have dismissed it had it promoted Hindu religion.
Though the NDA government has buckled under the mounting pressure from the All India Muslim Personal Law Board and dropped ‘Surya Namaskar’ from their exercise plan for the day, but the fact is even the set of 16 exercises are for overall physical and mental health and has nothing to do with obeisance before a deity. Won’t patients, irrespective of their religion, follow exercises if recommended by a doctor, including ‘Surya Namaskar’?
Let me share my eye-opening tete-e-tete with bold, brave and beautiful people at Iyengar Yogashraya situated on Mumbai’s busy Senapati Bapat Marg. I remember the wrinkled and smiling face of BV Nayak. His leg was amputated when he was barely four years old as he had developed gangrene. But determined to play pranks like his healthy friends he got an artificial limb. He served RBI as senior executive till Parkinson’s disease set in when he was in his fifties.
When I met him in 2007 he was 74 and unstoppable despite the ailment and age. His body was trembling from head to toe as he vigorously matched steps with other Parkinson’s disease patients. There were props like ropes, rods, belts and bolsters to help all.
His words became my catchphrase, “Life is so beautiful. Why not live it fully till the end.” That was the motto of all the 25 Parkinson’s disease patients practising yoga to improve their quality of life. And they simply loved the toughest of the asanas. It didn’t matter which faith they pursued — what bonded them was their will to improve their quality of life.
Few years back I was in Agra and happened to meet Father John Ferreira, principal of St Peter’s College. The school has 4,000 students from all faiths and yoga is a part of their daily calendar.
Significantly, yoga has helped the school management to discipline students, control their aggressiveness and stress levels.
Let’s not drag religion in everything.
It’s hard to fathom why Prime Minister Narendra Modi wasted one year in warning religious hotheads to behave or face music. That his government will not tolerate violence or bias against any community should have come much earlier at the time when efforts were on in the country, especially Uttar Pradesh, to raise communal temperatures by what he himself said, ‘uncalled for unfortunate comments.’ [Read more]
After RJD president Lalu Yadav hinted at technical roadblocks delaying merger of the newly formed Janata Parivar, his another Bihar ally Nitish Kumar appealed to the figurehead Mulayam Singh Yadav to remove the stumbling blocks as early as possible. But this is obviously not going to be easy even for an experienced alliance creator Mulayam Singh Yadav.