City Gets its First Yoga Museum
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Times of India
26 December 2008
by Dipti Sonawala
Oldest Yoga Institute at Santacruz showcases 5000-year-old art form through paintings, letters and ancient equipment
The Yoga Institute at Santacruz on Thursday launched a first-of-itskind yoga museum in Mumbai, based on classical yoga. The institute turned 90 on December 25 and is believed to be one of the oldest yoga institutes in the city.
Making good use of limited space, the museum put together a comprehensive display on the ancient art form through three dedicated sections. While the first displayed its rich 5,000 year old heritage through paintings, literature, copies of ancient letters and old equipment’s, the other two sections showcased work done by the institute in the last nine decades. The latter sections also had 90 year old equipment used by the institutes founder and his disciples on display.
“We have put up charts to explain put across the meaning of traditional yoga in a simple manner. We thought it necessary to do so as people today are not clear about it’s concept. For them, it is making difficult body postures to cure diseases. We have designed the museum in such a way that it not only explains what yoga is but also shows its chronological history and contribution made by various people through the years. We want to promote the purest and simplest form of yoga through our museum and institute,” said Hansaji Jaydeva, director of the institute.
Jaydeva and other yoga instructors at the institute say that people who approach them to learn yoga think it is only a physical exercise and show interest in learning only the physical aspects of it. “Yoga is a vast science.
Students should follow its eight–fold path but today, a common man only wants to learn the ‘Asanas’ and ‘Pranayama’ which are the third and fourth rules of the eight fold path.
By skipping ‘Yama’ and ‘Niyama’, the first two and the most important aspects, they cannot gain the expected results from yoga, said Hansaji.
Yama adheres to ones social behaviour while niyama adheres to the discipline and responsibility a Yoga learner must instil in his lifestyle, he explained.
Shashank Ranjit, a yoga instructor said that the most common grouse that people didn’t have time to practise or learn Yoga was a fallacy.
“If we do our routine work sincerely, honestly and on time we tend to learn ‘Yama’ and ‘Niyama’, two important aspects of Yoga. The museum would definitely help learners to know all this,” he said.
About ‘The Yoga Institute’:
The Yoga Institute, a government recognised non–profit body, was established by Shri Yogendraji (earlier known as Manibhai Haribhai Desai) on December 25, 1918 at ‘The Sands’, the residence of Dadabhai Naoroji at Versova.
In 1948, the institute was permanently shifted to Santacruz (E), which is the current location of the yoga institute.