Enthusiastic turnout for Surya Namaskara

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Dawn sees over a hundred people saluting the sun, reports SUJITH KRISHNAN

Group pic: Surya Namaskara devotees In yogic pose: Saluting the sun

Fitness and health have become mandatory subjects of discussion on the social circuit today and while there are numerous fitness regimens to choose from, none can conjure up the magical vigour of yoga. Rajendra Yenkannamoole, the founder of Vasudeva Kriya Yoga, a trained professional who has been practising his craft successfully in Melbourne since 2004, organized the Surya Namaskara (Salute to the Sun) at Brighton beach on February 26. Having organized various seminars on sustainable living in the past in Melbourne, Rajendra is no stranger to such events but since he believes he has a task at hand to make yoga a way of life in the community, his excitement prior to the event was easily comprehensible. Rajendra was ecstatic with the response, as the event turned out to be a major success with people from all age groups flocking to the beach before sunrise to show their support and be part of this invigorating routine. Nearly a hundred people attended the event which began at 5:30am and concluded at 8am.

We are aware that yoga is extremely beneficial, but what does one gain by doing the Surya Namaskara? According to Rajendra, “Physically it helps strengthen the leg muscles, the sciatica nerves, the lower back, neck muscles, loosens the shoulder muscles and opens up the lungs. Apart from adding a sense of calm to the mind, it invokes the blessings of the Lord. Moreover, there is a rise in energy levels, improved vision and the internal organs profit from the practice as well.” Rajendra believes that even an intense workout in a gym cannot restore the benefits that come from performing the Surya Namaskara on a regular basis.

Just to substantiate the fact that yoga is for everybody, irrespective of age and gender, Rajendra asserts, “Some have a misconception that yoga is a workout and that it is an inferior type of sadhana (a daily spiritual practice). Yoga, infact, helps establish the harmony of body, mind and soul. Performing the Surya Namaskara is like tapas (discipline) as it energises all the five Koshas or consciousness – Annamaya Kosha (body), pranamaya kosha (energy), manomaya kosha (emotion), vijnanamaya kosha (wisdom) and anandamaya kosha (bliss)”.

Attendees to the event included a large number of Indian-origin people, while other nationalities like Australians and Chinese also took part in this invigorating ritual. Said Latha Rowville, “I was really proud and satisfied to see the disc of the sun as it rose in front of me along with 108 times and the final pradhatshana namaskaram gave a beautiful touch to the conclusion.” Maria who attended the Surya Namaskar was thrilled with the experience saying, “We started our meditation under the stars and then by the time we reached our final meditation the sun was beaming on us it was just beautiful and very rewarding.” For Bannir and Rani too, it was a special feeling. The unique experience was very impactful and memorable: the choice of venue, serene surroundings, ambience and time of the day was simply divine and the experience Bannir and I had was nothing short of spiritual,” said Rani.

Though content with the turnout and response for the event, Rajendra’s mission is to conduct the Surya Namaskara at different locations in the city on a regular basis in the near future.  We wish him the very best.

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