Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP) coined Global Peace Index (GPI) as the quantification of the extent of peacefulness country-wise and worldwide that covers 99.7 per cent of the world’s population to display report on 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators from three major thematic domains: the level of Societal Safety and Security; the extent of Ongoing Domestic and International Conflict; and the degree of Militarization.
Violent conflict investigates the extent to which countries are involved in internal and external conflicts, as well as their role and duration of involvement in those conflicts. Societal security evaluates the level of harmony or discord within a society, as captured by the level of interpersonal violence, trust, and political stability. Militarization measures the ability of a nation to project force both internally and externally provides a snapshot of the prominence of the military within the country, and the level of involvement with formal international peacekeeping processes (IEP, 2017).
Yoga is more about the mental exercise of feeling supreme soul that enables one to rise above a limited, physical consciousness and become aware of one’s identity as a spiritual being and its interconnection with the entire mankind. Its practice promotes physical wellness, induces self-peace, builds harmonious relations with the self, others, and nature; and cultivates deep consciousness of collective peace (Brahma Kumaris, 2017). The sage Patanjali duly advocates the first two limbs: yam- social discipline (non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, non-possessiveness, & celibacy) and niyam– self discipline (purity, contentment, austerity, self-study and surrender to God) as prerequisites and elementary practices to begin yogic living and realize its bio-psycho-socio-spiritual benefits at individual and global level. This precise yoga system explicitly discusses yoga as a pragmatic universal approach for creating global peace.
The 3rd International Day of Yoga (IDY) was commemorated under the theme of “Yoga for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)” on 21 June 2017 in which over 180 countries participated. The Secretary-General Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti and the UN General Assembly President Peter Thomson consistently reiterated yoga as a concept that is very close to the United Nations (UN) values of sustainability and peace on 3rd IDY (Das, 2017). They stressed that yoga is an important means to promote health and well being to achieve the SDGs and guides us to be in harmony with our fellow humans and nature. During the same event, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi stressed that Yoga is India’s recommendation to promote wellness and peace with an appeal to each global inhabitant for yoga practice to induce peace at the individual and collective level in his popular national broadcast (Mann Ki Baat –Heart’s talk).