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Heartfulness proposes meditation on the heart with an aim of attaining subtler levels of consciousness. The heart is not merely a pump for blood circulation – its role goes far beyond that. References in ancient Indian literature on Yoga, especially that from Sages like Patanjali,…



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30 Nov 2021

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Yoga for COVID-19 Pandemic – The IYA  Approach
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Yoga for COVID-19 Pandemic – The IYA Approach 

The current crisis of the prevailing COVID-19 pandemics has had a major impact on the globe. In this time of being quarantined, we find ourselves engulfed in a sense of foreboding, uncertainty, loneliness, fear, anxiety and doubt more often than not. The Indian Yoga Association – IYA, has started an initiative of Synchronized Global Prayers, in response to this pandemic, with the unique collective support of Yoga Gurus from across the world.

The efficacy of collective action like meditation and prayers promotes a collective consciousness field that helps in reducing the impact of the pandemic in the minds and hearts of people. Such collective prayers have the ability to change the physical forces by the force of our intentions. Such actions have proven to be effective in creating change, not only in individual consciousness but also the physical aspect of reality.
April 14, 2020 marked a memorable day in the history of IYA as many prominent Yoga Masters came together to extend their support to the efforts of the Synchronized Global Prayer project launched by Dr.H. R. Nagendra. The event received a tremendous response, as it aired on television channels and social media. It was principally telecast by Sudarshan TV with the chairman and editor-in-chief, Shri Suresh Chavanke himself anchoring the show.

As many as fourteen prominent Yoga Guides addressed the entire nation LIVE on the channel from the same virtual platform — Yogrishi Swami Ramdev ji Maharaj president Patanjali Yogpeeth and Chairman, Governing Council, IYA as also various Governing Council Members of IYA namely Sri Sri Ravi Shankar ji- President Art of Living Foundation, Daaji (Shri Kamlesh Patel ji) – President of Shri Ram Chandra Mission (Heartfulness), Swami Chidanand Saraswati ji – President Parmarth Niketan Ashram, Dr Pranav Pandya ji – President Gayatri Parivar and Shri OP Tiwari ji – President Kaivalyadham institute.

As host of the event and President of the Executive Council of IYA, Dr HR Nagendra also welcomed, other members of the IYA executive Council, notably, Maa Hansa Jayadeva Yogendra ji – Director of the Yoga Institute, Swami Atmapriyanandaji –Vice Chancellor of Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda University, Sadhvi Bhagavati Saraswati ji of the Parmarth Niketan ashram. The forum also had Swami Amrta Suryananda ji from The Portuguese Yoga Federation, Swami Maheshwarananda ji from the Yoga for Life institute, Acharya Dr Lokesh Muni ji founder of the Ahimsa Vishwa Bharati Institute and Antonietta Rozzi – Recipient of the Prime Minister’s Award for Yoga 2019.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar ji’s talked about awakening our collective consciousness and building determination. He said, “Our thoughts have enormous power because all our actions are controlled by our thoughts. During the COVID-19 pandemic we should use our power of thoughts as well as discover the potential of silence. Nature has bestowed us with enormous power in our individual consciousness; let us add determination to our consciousness to win over the pandemic. Thus we can create a collective consciousness that has an immense potential to change things for the better, on our planet. “Vikalpa”, which signifies the opposite of the word Sankalpa or ‘intent’ has to be overcome by determination. Try to do whatever is possible to help the society. Follow the rules set down by the government, stay in solitude, improve your skills and pray as much as you can.”
Emphasizing the importance of Gayatri Mantra, Dr Pranav Pandya ji said, “We will overcome the COVID-19 Pandemic under the leadership of our Hon’ Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji. We need to be away from negativity. Our words have enormous power. Presently we are going through, what could well be the biggest crisis of this era.

Let’s ask the almighty to illuminate our hearts which are filled with darkness at times, and bring enlightenment within us.”

However, Daaji (Kamlesh Patel ji) underlined COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity for all of us to learn something, which is unfolding in front of our very eyes. He suggested that though we should definitely resort to prayer, but at this moment, offering help to the needy is of utmost importance. He quoted Swami Vivekananda’s reference saying that our duty is to serve humanity with practical means and ensure the wellbeing of the multitudes. Prayer should be our last resort. In this war like situation, we should extend our helping hand to those that need to be fed and taken care of by taking up all possible solutions and actions for this.

At 6pm everyone participated in the Synchronized Global Prayers. It was a wonderful thing to see the unity, that was made evident, as all these stalwarts of Yoga came together as one to pray and propose wisdom for the world in these troubled times.

Swami Chidanand ji then spoke about the need for compassion, urging one and all to take this lockdown as an opportunity to unveil our true inner nature and improve the self. He stressed that we all have to act and pray together so that the Mother Nature can heal and we can overcome this pandemic. He mentioned that this quarantine has given us the opportunity to be together with our loved ones, so let’s make the most of it and live in harmony.

Talking about the importance of serving the needy, Maa Hansa Jayadeva Yogendra ji said, “Let’s stop worrying and focus on our duties. The thoughts that we send out in the universe should be good. If our thoughts and universal thoughts resonate in a positive tone, it will ultimately benefit the whole of mankind. Consider the entire universe as your home. Be mindful to maintain a good balance within and find solace in the fact that God is helping us. Let’s keep up our faith in God.”

Swami Atmapriyanandaji described the need to regulate speech, action and thought. He also said that it is important for all of us to understand that for all our advancement in science, technology we almost find ourselves at a loss before such a microscopic virus. It’s the time we realized that Kam(lust), Krodh(anger), Lobh (greed), Moh (attachment) are akin to inner virus that poison our lives and we need to learn how to get rid of them.

Shri OP Tiwari ji added that the whole world is passing through a critical phase. Our values and culture teaches us to consider the whole world as a family – Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam and one should now embody that ideal by praying for the whole of humanity.

Sadhvi Bhagavati Saraswati ji stressed on the need to move from illness to wellness, saying that we need to offer ourselves in service at times like this without any distinctions or discriminations. She mentioned that we need to create a new “normal”. Instead of going back to what was once considered normal, let us take this opportunity to change our mindset for the better. As we overcome, step by step, this pandemic, we need to pledge move forwards instead of trying to recreate the past. This can be achieved by bringing yoga into our lives.

Swami Maheshwarananda ji was intent on how we can learn to care for each other and most of all for Mother Nature. Antonietta Rozzi of Italy, referred to the writings of Mahatma Gandhi who spoke of being the change we would like to see in the world. Her presentation of Yoga as the technology of a ‘change of consciousness’ could harbor a real revolution at the global level.

Resonating on similar thoughts, Acharya Lokesh ji urgently requested all traditions to come under one umbrella and work in unity in the time of crisis.

Taking on the centre stage Pujya Yogrishi Swami Ramdev ji Maharaj gave hope to everyone. He said, “We will break this vicious circle of Corona. We don’t yet have a vaccine for COVID-19, but it is extremely important that we defeat the deadly virus by letting our heart, mind, consciousness and soul evolve. I am sure we will win this war against the virus with Yoga, by enhancing our immunity, inner power, self-confidence and following the instructions to be safe.” He said, “We all strongly support the steps taken by our government to fight COVID-19.”

Swami Amrta Suryananda ji added that from the cosmic point of view, we are a small planet and we should all be united to fight this pandemic. He highlighted that to take care of our planet’s health, it is vital we use recyclable products, involve ourselves in sustainable activities as part of our lifestyle.

Prayers help us to stay in control and protect us from problem, underlined Swami Bharat Bhushan ji. He further added, “Synchronised Global Prayers eliminate negativity from our lives, from our family and the universe.

When we pray in unison, its effect enhances. This virus is not discriminating. Let us unite for the Synchronised Global Prayers as it mark a smooth passage for positivity. Not only pray, we should also make efforts to be safe. Practice yoga to enhance your immunity.”

Dr HR Nagendra closed the session saying, “Each one of us is a powerhouse and an embodiment of great Shakti. When we all come together and synchronize the sankalpa, a new consciousness field of positivity emerges, which can probably even drive away the power of negativity.” Indian Yoga Association aims to embody this unity in our lives, families, communities and nations and hopes that it will continue to bring more such events in the fore in the coming times.

IYA Protocol for Synchronised Global Prayers

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Nature has bestowed us with enormous power in our consciousness; let us put this determination in our consciousness to win over the pandemic.

Dr HR Nagendra
When we all come together and synchronise the sankalpa, a new consciousness field of positivity emerges, which can even probably drive away the power of negativity

Pujya Yogrishi Swami Ramdev ji Maharaj
We don’t yet have a vaccine for COVID-19, but it is extremely important that we defeat the deadly virus by letting our heart, mind, consciousness and soul evolve

Maa Hansa Jayadeva Yogendra ji
Be mindful to maintain a good balance within and find solace in the fact that God is helping us

Acharya Lokesh Muni ji
All traditions should come under one umbrella and work in unity in the time of crisis.

Swami Amrta Suryananda ji
It is vital we use recyclable products, involve ourselves in sustainable activities as part of our lifestyle

Daaji Kamlesh Patel ji
We should definitely resort to prayer, but at this moment, offering help to the needy is of utmost importance

Shri OP Tiwari
Our values and culture teaches us to consider the whole world as a family – Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam

Swami Atmapriyanandaji
It’s the time we realized that Kam, Krodh, Lobh, Moh are akin to inner virus that poison our lives

Dr Pranav Pandya ji
Let’s ask the almighty to illuminate our hearts which are filled with darkness at times, and bring enlightenment within us

Swami Bharat Bhushan ji
Synchronised Global Prayers eliminate negativity from our lives, from our family and the universe. When we pray in unison, its effect enhances.

Sadhvi Bhagavati Saraswati ji
Instead of going back to what was once considered normal, let us take this opportunity to change our mindset for the better

Swami Maheshwarananda ji
We should learn to care for each other and most of all for Mother Nature

Antonietta Rozzi
Yoga is the technology for a ‘change of consciousness’ that could harbor a real revolution at the global level.

Swami Chidanand Saraswati ji
Act and pray together so that the Mother Nature can heal and we can overcome this pandemic.

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