The Shift Network Blog

Philip Hellmich
By Philip Hellmich
Director of Peace, The Shift Network

Yoga is an ancient science, dating back 5,000 to 10,000 years, that has spread around the world...

While many people enjoy yoga for its physical and health benefits, the deeper wisdom of yoga can help you to improve your life and to find practical solutions to modern challenges.

In fact, yoga can help to take appropriate action guided by a natural intelligence that will uplift and serve.

My friend Sandra de Castro Buffington, Founding Director of the Global Media Center for Social Impact, and I recently traveled to Rishikesh, India, the birthplace of yoga in the foothills of the Himalayas along the banks of the Holy Ganges River, to talk with some of the world’s leading yoga teachers.

We asked each of these beloved yogis how the ancient science of yoga can provide insights to modern personal and collective challenges. Here are the highlights from these sacred sessions:

Yoga: The Deeper Essence is Relevant to Modern Times with Anand Mehrotra

While sitting on the banks of the Holy Ganges River, Anand Mehrotra reflects on how the ancient science of yoga is more widely accessible than ever before. The real invitation of yoga is to transcend and evolve, beyond form and poses, explaining “Yoga is not about escaping. As you go deeper into your own true essence, you’ll stay relevant to the flow of modern life.”


 

Yoga Begins and Ends with Love with Anand Mehrotra

Yoga brings you into deep union with the Divine — the very essence of life which is eternal love.


 

Stillness & Yoga: Allowing Health to Emerge through an Embodied Practice with Brian Siddharth Ingle

The ancient wisdom of the sages unites with modern medicine in this conversation with osteopath and renowned yoga teacher, Brian Siddharth Ingle. Brian, who studied with the great spiritual master Papaji, describes how health emerges from stillness... guided by a universal intelligence and the movement of love. An embodied yoga practice helps you access this innate state of being and radiant health.


 

Stillness in Motion: Anchoring on Essence instead of Form with Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji

Modern life can be busy, even for Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji of Parmarth Niketan Ashram, who oversees numerous service projects helping the most marginalized in her community. Sadhviji learned from the Holy Ganges River (Ma Ganga) how to anchor her attention into essence instead of form, in order to experience stillness and peace amidst motion.

Yoga: Service Naturally Arises from Oneness with Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji

Yoga is union of Self with Spirit. When embodying the awareness of Oneness, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji highlights how it becomes natural to serve all aspects of creation as part of your higher Self.

Yoga: Balancing Divine Masculine and Feminine to Transform Self and the World with Anand Mehrotra

Anand Mehrotra illuminates the fundamental imbalance of masculine and feminine energies taking place in the world today. According to Anand, yoga teaches you that the Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine evolve together... and that this embodied balance is needed on both individual and collective levels.

Bridging Political Divides: Yoga, Self Responsibility & Collective Consciousness with Kia Miller

World-renowned yoga teacher Kia Miller believes that in this time of political polarization, it’s essential to let go of blame and to stop attacking “the other.” It’s important to take responsibility for your own healing so you can act from a place of natural intelligence.

In a dynamic conversation with Kia, we explore how the science of yoga can serve as a foundation for inner transformation, while contributing to the evolution of collective consciousness.

Yoga, Consciousness and Spontaneous Correct Action with Anand Mehrotra

Anand Mehrotra says that yoga opens us to deeper levels of natural intelligence that help guide us toward “spontaneous correct action” that uplifts and serves.

What’s your favorite yoga practice? How have you moved “beyond the mat” with your yoga practice? We’d love to hear from you!


Journey to the birthplace of yoga as you immerse yourself in a one-of-a-kind experience with a global community of yogis — sages, musicians, scientists and beloved teachers from around the globe — to discover yoga practices, guided meditations and healing breathwork during a 2-day celebration of the United Nation’s International Day of Yoga — The Yoga Day Summit, From Ancient Roots to Modern Transformation

Did you discover something new about Yoga in this article or elsewhere? Share your thoughts in the comments below.