Yoga, Health And Happiness
Yoga has become very popular in the west, in last century. As the trend has been, in last many decades, Yoga has shown subsequent popularity in the Asian countries, including India. This popularity of Yoga is on account of its positive impact on the western society, specially personal health, happiness and social harmony. It may therefore be appropriate to examine this issue, in reference to Indian society.
Yoga is a structured process to develop the capability for the realisation of self, followed by the integration of this realisation with different roles of life, so that individuals and societies are equally benefitted. It is an approach of social transformation through personal transformation. Indian sage, Patanjali has masterly described the scientific process of this approach, popularly known as “Asthtaang Yoga”. Hence, it may not be an exaggeration to accept the fact that Yoga is an effective “Lifestyle Management Approach”.
Technically, a structured process of Yoga, imparts physical fitness, breath-control, control of mind and realisation of soul/self. Prevention from diseases, better outlook for personal life and society, freedom from fear and frustration, mental peace and sharpness, pleasant disposition and much needed service attitude for the society, are natural by-products of yoga accomplishment. It is on this account that medical scientists are now consciously researching and integrating Yoga with conventional health care management approaches. It has become a popular tool for holistic approach in health care delivery and a powerful tool of community health programmes.
Happiness is a state of mind. Generally people feel happy on account of the fulfilment of desires. Desires are the product of Mind and could be un-ending. Therefore, desires may lead to frustrations, discontentment and dereliction of duties in the accepted roles of life, on account of their un-fulfilment. Dalai Lama has therefore rightly said: “One should learn to be happy without reason.” It is because of the fact that when the reason of happiness will go, happiness will also suffer. Control of mind, achieved on account of Yoga practice, controls the desires and thus helps to attain happiness without reason, as Dalai Lama has said.
This triangle of Yoga, Health and Happiness is the golden triangle for the peaceful growth and development of mankind on this earth. Western world has already experienced the tremendous impact of Yoga on the personal development and society, in last century. It is on this account that Yoga is now gingerly discussed in the corporate board rooms of most reputed industries as well as best medical schools of America, alike. It has definitely helped in evolving better citizens for a more cohesive and happy society. It has also affected the personal productivity of professionals at work places and therefore has come out as a powerful tool for developing strong competitive competencies, in each sector of corporate and industrial life. Now, how seriously, extensively and closely we examine this tool of personal and social transformation for the Indian society, is yet to be seen.
By Dr Dipak Shukla