This may not be the most well-known fact, but June 21 is International Day of Yoga. The worldwide celebrative day is still fairly new as it was incepted in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly. However, yoga is anything but young. It is believed to have originated in India around 3000 B.C. with stone carvings of persons in yoga poses being found in the Indus Valley, which is one of the main civilizations during the Bronze Age. The word ‘yoga’ is derived from Sanskrit and means to join or unite, which is a reflection of yoga’s aims of uniting the body and consciousness.
Since then, yoga has seen many changes and in more recent times, different forms or styles of yoga have been introduced, catering to different needs—physical, mental or spiritual. While it should ideally be practiced in totality as the benefits of the Trinity are synergistic, yoga is fine being practiced for its physical benefits. In other words, yoga has been split into its components to cater to the needs of the modern human.
Why do yoga?
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My name is Alicia Crysta Easter, which means “noble anointed one of dawn.” (ostre was a Germanic goddess of spring.) I am the daughter of Cynthia Geneva Lawson and granddaughter of Eleanor Cecilia Lawson. I am a yogi, Black woman, teacher, podcast host, candle designer, liberator, Black joy beam, writer, facilitator, lover, sister, and friend. I stand on the shoulders of the 10,000 ancestors who came before me, and I do not take my presence here lightly. I am honored to be a pair of shoulders to stand on for those who come after me. My ability to fully claim who I am came through the practice of yoga.
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