one more feather in Sri Sri's cap
Columbia to confer highest civilian award
With the consent of Head of Parliament, Columbia will bestow its highest declaration award ‘Orden de la Democracia Simon Boliviar en el grado de cruz Caballero’ on Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, spiritual leader, humanitarian and founder, Art of Living on June 24. In a written letter the President of the Congress of the Republic of Columbia, Fabio Raul Amin Saleme, lauded the important work done by the spiritual guru on peace issues, conflict resolution, and rehabilitation work in war ridden areas. It also highlighted the notable work done by Art of living in Columbia for the past 8 years and invited him to help, “in the construction of a more inclusive and less violent society, where we can accept one another.”
Sri Sri earlier had been bestowed numerous honours by India and countries across the globe including the Order of the Pole Star (the highest state honour in Mongolia), Highest civilian award ‘National Order of Merito de Comuneros’ in Paraguay. Sri Sri addressed several international forums, including the United Nations Millennium World Peace Summit (2000), the World Economic Forum (2001, 2003) and several parliaments across the globe. He is engaged in peace negotiations and counselling in conflict zones around the world. His expertise in bringing opposing parties to the negotiating table in areas such as Sri Lanka, Iraq, the Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Kashmir and Bihar is widely acknowledged.
AOL Mangolia mesmerises Modi with Yoga
Dressed in hues of the Indian tricolour, the Art of Living showcased the Indian tradition of yoga in honour of the first visit of the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi to Mongolia.
Commending the Art of living and its reach in Mongolia, the PM said, “I’m so happy seeing people of Mongolia proudly perform sun salutations wearing India's tricolour flag uniform. People of all ages are doing sun salutations. And not only that, they are singing ‘Vasudaika kutumbakam'.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar travelled all over the world and spread the spiritual consciousness born in India, and moulded it with a modern look for the liking of the new generation of the world. In Mongolia from every house, 'The Art of living's message is echoed. No one could have imagined that a country smaller than Andaman in population could have organised such a large gathering."
For his numerous initiatives and his services towards uplifting the spirits of Mongolians and helping improve the quality of life, Sri Sri has been awarded the country’s highest civilian honour, the Pole Star. “Sri Sri told me there is a wonderful spiritual atmosphere of consciousness in Mongolia, and you must take some time to meet the people. If I go back from Mongolia without meeting you all, my visit would have been incomplete," the PM concluded.
Mongolia over the years reached out to India for its wealth of spirituality. Today, out of the population of 3 million about 1.5 million people including several parliamentarians and leaders are practicing the Art of Living Yoga, Meditation and Breathing Techniques.
‘My life became happier, healthier’
When did you get associated with Art of living and how?
One fine summer evening in year 2003, while having a casual walk with a friend, I noticed a banner displaying information about upcoming Basic Course (Now known as Happiness Program); something inside me said “Do This” (I call it a call from divine). There was no looking back since then and in 2009, Guru Ji blessed me to become an Art of Living teacher.
What are the benefits you got out of it?
The list of benefits I got on being in this path is endless, but I am mentioning a few. My energy levels were all time high. I had developed a centered mind and superior decision making abilities leading to personal, professional and spiritual growth. My life became better, happier and healthier. I became very innovative and all hidden talents came out. I started writing Songs/Bhajans, composing Music, Singing and Painting to just name a few.
How it is helping you in your profession?
Professional life in current times is very demanding and can be really very stressful. Yoga, Pranayama, Meditation, Sudharshan Kriya and knowledge I acquired in AoL programs helped me to not only keep pace with time but also achieve high goals without getting stressed. This in turn inspired people around me to live a stress free successful professional life. It helped me to become more and more efficient and utilise time and energy better.
Which aspect of art of living appeals you the most and that you would like to implement in your life?
The practical and experiential aspect of techniques (Specially Sudharshan Kriya) learned in AoL, are my biggest treasure. Sadhana, Seva and Satsang are my way of life now. Sadhana gives me strength and centeredness to live a wonderful personal, professional and spiritual life, Seva helps me to realise the fact that we have to be the change which we want to see in society and Satsang energises me.
What is your vision for AOL in our city? Your approach to bring transformation in people?
As a person who has experienced Art of Living and got immensely benefited by it, can only think of sharing this wonderful knowledge to each and every person in my city and beyond. The dream of building a divine society can only be fulfilled by making every individual divine. My dream is to take this knowledge to every individual so that they also get benefitted the way I had got. Seva, Sadhana and Satsang will make people more and more available for others and create better world for the next generation.
- Nikhil Mishra
Director Projects Development
Oracle India Pvt. Ltd.
Leading Yoga Day fete in 108 cities
As a prelude to the International Day of Yoga, The Art of Living has been invited by Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy, the yoga council of the Ministry of AYUSH to conduct month long yoga camps in 66 districts across 19 states from May 21.
"Yoga has been an integral part of our tradition. We need to revive these values to create a healthy, happy and stress-free society," said Kamlesh Barwal, global head, The Art of Living Yoga. The month long camps will culminate on June 21st with a celebration marking The International Day of Yoga, and will see participation from Nehru Yuva Kendras, NCC, NSS as well as the citizens of each city.
The Art of Living has been conducting free yoga sessions from May 1, which has garnered participation of people from all walks of life. The organisation has been conducting Free Yog Shibirs across India to spread awareness about the benefits of yoga. So far, more than 40,000 people have benefited from these Yog Shibirs in India.
Emphasising on the need to adopt yoga as healthy way of life, The Art of Living will be conducting numerous events across the globe on June 21st. Many cities in India along with108 cities around the globe will be leading the yoga day celebrations. Some of the countries and cities participating in the event are Buenos Aires, Berlin, Mexico, Toronto, Calgary, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Tokyo, Singapore, Penang, Nigeria, Ulaan-Baatar, Melborne, Perth, Auckland, St.Petersburg will be leading the yoga day celebrations.
The Art of Living Yoga is a holistic way of life that integrates all elements of ancient knowledge of Yoga, to make a prayerful discipline uniting the body, mind and soul.