International Peace Day: Salutations to the Sun

September 21. International Day of Peace. Twenty-eight years ago, about when I began my yoga practice, the world, as directed by the United Nations, began a way for individuals and communities to create practical ways to share peace in their neighborhoods.

Around the world, yogis celebrate by performing sun salutations, or surya namaskar. There’s even a great website that connects all of them. (There could be one near you!) We are celebrating it too, at a new outdoor location in Sunnyvale.

What is the sun salutation? The sun gives us energy, light, and power; we absorb vitamins using the sun’s rays, and then lay back to bask in the sun. We feel relaxed and peaceful. The sun provides so much needed supplies to humans, animals, plants, and other living beings. The series of poses go through back bends and heart openers, spinal elongations, core strengtheners, relaxations, and much more, fulfilling all the needs of the body, mind, and soul.

108 Sun Salutations may take a long time, but peace is going to take a lot longer. It’s time we as yoga students and peace students do something to bring peace to our inner selves and be able to spread a positive energy throughout our community and the world. When we ourselves have inner peace, we become role models to others, and we are more effective when helping others.

In keeping with the philosophy of yoga not to push yourself to the extreme–to maintain balance and avoid over-exertion and injury–our International Peace Day here in Silicon Valley will be to practice sun salutations. Just as many we can do! Please come out and join us! Email me for details.

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