Yoga will lead to a new era of togetherness and harmony, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday.
Calling yoga the “journey from ‘me’ to ‘we’,” Modi said: “Yoga makes an individual a better person in thought, action, knowledge and devotion.”
“The world today is also threatened by the twin challenges -- terrorism and climate change,” he said via video conference as the 29th edition of the International Yoga Festival opened in Rishikesh.
Talking on global peace, Modi said, “There should be peace among nations” and “only peaceful families can constitute peaceful society”.
“Yoga is the way to create such a harmony and peace within individuals, family, society, nation and ultimately all over the world,” he added.
On combating climate change, Modi asked people to move away from the lifestyle of “bhoga” (consumption) to one of yoga.
On the positive impact of yoga and ills of modern lifestyle, Modi said: “There is ample evidence that practising yoga helps combat stress and chronic lifestyle-related conditions.”
Launding the recent achievements of scientists in defence and space technologies, Modi said: “We in India believe in researching both the frontiers of science and technology, as also, researching deep within our souls, that is, both science and yoga.”
On the cleaning of major temples and their surrounding through the Swachh Bharat Mission, the Prime Minister said: “Historically temples have played a key role in our societies.”
“Usually, they were built on a vast area of land, and often away from the residential areas and with passage of time, they were surrounded by markets, and residential colonies.”
“They face unclean surroundings as a major challenge,” he said.
The Prime Minister also said the project ‘Swachh Iconic Places’ is now part of Swachh Bharat Mission and in the first phase, Kamakhya temple, Jagannath temple, Meenakshi temple, Tirupati, the Golden temple, and Vaishno Devi temple would be spruced up.
Appreciating the work of Parmarth Niketan and Swami Chidanand Saraswati, Modi said, “Parmarth Niketan is bringing yoga to people across the world” and recalled the “role played by Swami, in compiling the 11-volume Encyclopaedia of Hinduism”.
“Works like Encyclopaedia of Hinduism, when made available in various languages, increase the understanding and enhance the awareness of other traditions and cultures within the country,” he said.