Today it is becoming more and more apparent that yoga will become the universal culture. The thinking people in every field are now evaluating the role yoga will play in the formation of a new world order. Those who are spiritual by nature have of course already realized the place of yoga in their lives, but now people from all strata of society are discovering that yoga should be introduced to enable everyone to restructure the mind and personality.
In many countries, yogic practices are being taught in the prisons and now great and positive changes are taking place in the personalities of hardened criminals. Every country has its own specific problems to solve and we have to find how we can relate yoga to those problems. For example, drug addiction is a great problem in the USA, and the introduction of new laws and symposia to curtail drug abuse there have all failed. However, in various drug rehabilitation centres where yogic techniques are being taught, very good results are being attained.
In the field of mental health, a lot of work has already been done with yoga, particularly with hatha yoga, and of course, the results are excellent. In several countries, children are being introduced to yoga and all the reports I have seen are very good. The belief that yoga is only a means of physical exercise is obsolete. Scientists in many countries are now researching the effects of yoga practices on all forms of disease. In Australia, doctors are even utilizing yoga and meditation in the treatment of cancer patients. I believe that the medical profession will soon recognize the fundamental importance of yoga and meditation.
You may be surprised to know that many of the European governments are beginning to recognize the efficacy of yoga. The Danish government acknowledges yoga as part. of the national education program and in Czechoslovakia the Department of Sports and Health is adamantly promoting the cause of yoga amongst its citizens. In France the government has recently donated land and given a grant of a few million francs to the French Federation of Yoga to develop a yoga university. These are just a few examples of how awareness of yoga is spreading though out Europe.
In our own country, yoga has become a compulsory subject in many of the government schools and as a result, thousands of teachers from every state must receive yogic training. I am presently preparing a large ashram complex where these teachers can be trained on a large; scale.
However, the most important task is that we have to expose more and more people to the benign influence of yoga. All over the world, people are suffering, whether they are financially secure or living in poverty. Just because one is well dressed, residing in a nice home and having a good position does not mean he is free from internal agonies. Everyone is striving for peace of mind and happiness, but this will only come when you expose yourself to yoga and begin to know a little more about the man within.