Every year, thousands of yogis from around the world come to New York City for the Mind Over Madness Yoga event, which is held in the heart of Times Square. To celebrate the summer solstice, also known as the longest day of the year, four separate sessions of intense but fun yoga classes were held during Wednesday’s 15 hours of daylight.
I had the pleasure of participating this year, and it was a great experience. Despite the sweltering heat (temperatures neared 100 degrees), the yoga instructor emphasized the point of the event: to use our minds to overcome the madness in the center of Times Square, arguably the most distracting place on earth. By focusing on my practice, I was able to block out the action and find peace, even in the midst of flashing lights, 20-foot screens, billboards, and onlookers and media reps with flashing cameras. It helped that the woman beside me, a much more seasoned yogi than I, had two tattoos on her feet; one read “be still,” the other read, “and breathe.”
For many around the world, the summer solstice symbolizes a time to renew the mind, body and spirit. I can honestly say that the time I spent surrounded by thousands of other people moving in unison practicing this ancient art form helped me to feel replenished and ready to face the rest of summer head on. Namaste.
This is an annual event, so if it sounds like something you’d be interested in, visit TimesSquareNYC.org.