Did you yoga on International Yoga Day, Chief? You will be happy to know that The Man from Madras Musings did not, for he yogas on all other days like nobody’s business and so decided to give it a miss on that day of days. Not so several others whom MMM knows. And they all did it in front of cameras. Some were of the still variety while others moved and by that MMM refers to the inability of most people to remain stationary while twisting their untrained bodies into knots.

The camera apparently was an integral part of the yoga. Of course, given the prevalent obesity, MMM is rather glad that those who yoga’d for the day, did so in suitable attire, for the ancients, who were rather fitter, did it in the almost altogether. Not so for our budding Sumo practitioners. Many garments were seen to be lifting up in postures of their own, resulting in men and women having their embonpoints exposed.

Now, where was MMM before he went midriff gazing? Ah yes, he was talking about the camera. Yes, that was deemed necessary because without that, how could all those in distant Chennai curry favour with the big boss up north? They had themselves recorded and the images and movies were duly uploaded on YouTube in the hope that the great leader would in an idle moment want to see these antics. A self-declared sage from down South came to our city to conduct mass breathing sessions in an open-air venue for benefit of an invited audience. His doppelganger rival, who has a a double double prefix prefix and usually hangs out in IT city flew to Edelweiss country to yoga there. A political hopeful who answers to a fairly junior army rank put up on the Internet his version of what he spoke of as ‘yoha’ which raised a number of hahas. In short, much energy was generated, everyone went around chanting Om and spoke of world peace. And they all did it on camera.

What intrigued MMM was an invitation from the Archaeological Survey of India to observe Yoga Day. Before opening the missive, MMM wondered as to how the Department proposed to yoga. Would the officials wrap themselves around the endangered buildings? Would they bend over backwards to protect dilapidated but historic structures? Or would they continue as they are – tying themselves up into bureaucratic knots? The invitation revealed that none of the above was being contemplated. It was an exhibition of yoga as seen in sculptures and temple art. MMM did not visit it. He preferred to lie on his back and let his mind wander. That, in MMM’s view, is the yoga of yogas.

The next day, even as MMM unrolled his yoga mat, he noticed that most of the ardent practitioners of the previous day had rolled up their mats forever. Several were calling up their doctors for unknotting themselves from the postures they had tried the previous day. Others complained of backache. In MMM’s considered view, the day after International Yoga Day ought to be declared International Aches and Pains Day.