Dev Sanskriti Vishwavidyalaya (DSVV), located in the Indian town of Hardwar on the banks of the river Ganga, is hosting an international festival on yoga, culture and spirituality, which began on October 2, the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Close to 2000 delegates from 20 countries are participating in the 5-day festival. Delegates include those from countries such as the United States, South Korea and Israel, besides India. The festival is held annually at the university for the last four years. This year, the festival will feature 20 spiritual leaders and 30 yoga teachers. The program includes hatha yoga classes and pranayam classes.
Patrick McCulum, winner of the Mahatma Gandhi award winner for world peace and a respected spiritual teacher from the United States gave the inaugural address and spoke of how yoga is an important part of India’s spiritual heritage. “If ever there is a cultural and spiritual reawakening in the world, it will definitely begin from India,” he said.
DSVV chancellor Pranav Pandya spoke next and said, “The importance of yoga, culture and spiritualism is great considering the vital role they play in character building which finally deteremines the direction in which a nation moves. Collective character of a country is at the root of its overall growth. ” He also stressed the importance of yoga and Indian culture in strengthening the country today.
D R Kartikeyan, former special director of the Central Bureau of Investigation and head of the National Human Rights Commission was the Chief Guest at the function. He said that religion is essentially a concept to connect people together, not a belief system to drive people apart. He said that yoga is an important part of religion.
DSVV is a government-recognized university that is located near the Ganga. It conducts the event every year to publicize the beneficial effects of yoga and meditation and inform people of India’s spiritual heritage.