According to the International Yoga Federation, over 300 million people practice yoga around the world. That makes Yoga a growing multi-billion industry globally and one of the most popular cultural practices in the world. Over the years, yoga has taken different forms and yoga studios sprung like mushrooms across the globe.
While “Yoga” has become a mainstream path to wellness among everyday Americans, the practice was once unheard of in the West. Many have traced the global popularity of yoga back to Hindu monk Swami Vivekananda’s speeches at the World’s Parliament of Religions, Chicago, 1893.
Yoga approaches human well-being as a technology, as a scientific process - not as a philosophy, not as an ideology, not as a belief system. Of late, Yoga has been extremely popular in the context of fighting stress, anxiety, and depression in the times of industrialization and our super-fast lifestyles. It is also a business now that brings in a lot of money no matter where it is practiced even if that was not its original goal. There are yoga gatherings that bring lots of different people to India and to gurus. There are yoga classes throughout the world. Even There are Yoga clothes that have become fashion statements. There is a yogic diet that has become popular among health-conscious generations. Its capacity to support and enhance the remedy of a varied spectrum of illnesses along with preventive capabilities makes it the poster of the Wellness Industry. It is widespread through a great variety of countries.
Ever wonder where it all began?
The word "Yoga" first appeared in the oldest sacred texts, the Rig-Veda, and is derived from the Sanskrit root “Yuj” which means join or unite. Yoga is not an exercise. It is a spiritual discipline. Yoga is the oldest holistic health care system dating back to over 5000 years. Back then, the Gurukula based Vedic Education system played an important role in passing along the “Yoga” from teacher to students through oral tradition and physical practice. Many Gurukulas dotted the landscape of South Asia and attracted students, travelers from all over the Ancient World.