Yoga is a tapasya, not gymnastics. It requires regular practice: Shri Virender Kumar Harit
Shri Virender Kumar Harit, who is teaching yoga outside Bharat since 1978, wants Bharat to export trained yoga teachers and not the ones who treat it merely as a form of physical exercise
We know yoga is a complete health science, but many people have reduced it to merely a physical exercise. This phenomenon is seen the world over. Shri Virender Kumar Harit, popularly known as Shammi, has been working in Europe since 1978 to restore yoga in the real form. He says yoga is mind and Manovigyan (psychology). It does not benefit if we practise it incompletely.
Co-convener of Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh Dr Ram Vaidya and Shri Virender Kumar Harit with the yoga practitioners in France
Originally from Delhi, Shri Harit was trained by Swami Dhirendra Brahmachari at Viswayatan Yogashram, New Delhi. From 1979 to 1997, he taught yoga at Ivorian Indo Center of yoga in Abidjan, West Africa. After reaching France in April 1997, he started Indo Lille Yoga Center in Lille. In addition, he has been involved, since 2002, in Polyclinique de la Louvière, Respiratory Rehabilitation Center and Exercise Training. He regularly visits India along with some of his students and helps them understand Bharatiya culture closely. He also organises monthly workshops in Paris, Vesoul, Toulouse, Marseille, etc. His Yoga Center in France has been recognised by the Union Ministry of Health and the Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India.
Shri Harit is happy with the declaration of International Day of Yoga on June 21, but he is worried as many people outside India are not practising yoga in the real form. “They are basically teaching gymnastics, not yoga. The problem with many of them is that they have also divided yoga into groups as per their own convenience and to spread their business. Yoga is one and the model before us is Patanjali Yoga. Yoga is a tapasya, it is not a diploma. It requires regular practice,” he adds.
He strongly feels that Bharat should export trained yoga teachers who not only understand yoga in totality but also are able to teach it with perfection. Only then can we can get 100 per cent results and attract people towards yoga in the real sense. Otherwise, the people who are attracted towards yoga today because of the declaration of International Day of Yoga on June 21, would have wrong impression when they will not get desired results by practising incomplete yoga. “It is good that the Government of India has prepared a module for teaching yoga. But the problem is that many of the trainers outside India do not follow that module and they teach their own exercises only in the name of Yoga. This should stop,” he added. Shri Harit is now working to connect yoga with psychology particularly what Patanjali Yog Sutras and the Bhagwat Geeta. He claims that he has taught yoga to about five million people in Europe.
He says people of all faiths love yoga and they practise it without hesitation in Europe. “What we need is to teach them correct yoga so that they draw the desired benefit out of it. Incomplete information about yoga will shrink their faith in this health science. Some people may be seen opposing yoga in India, but Europe nobody objects. Even Muslim women in purdah come and practice yoga happily,” he added.