Downward-facing dog, other yoga postures strike graceful poses on U.N. stamps
By Denise McCarty
The United Nations Postal Administration is celebrating the International Day of Yoga, June 21, by issuing a pane of 10 stamps and se-tenant (side-by-side) labels.
The stamps are denominated $1.15 for use from the post office at U.N. headquarters in New York City.
The selvage of the pane depicts a photograph of the headquarters building lit up for the International Day of Yoga in 2016.
The illuminated design illustrates the yoga posture commonly known as downward-facing dog.
The same posture is pictured on the last stamp at lower right on the pane.
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Nine different yoga postures, or asanas, are illustrated on the other stamps in the pane.
The labels feature the mantra “om” in Devanagari script on different colored backgrounds that coordinate with the images shown on the stamps.
Although yoga originated thousands of years ago in India, the International Day of Yoga is fairly recent; it was first observed in 2015.
According to the website for the International Day of Yoga, Narendra Modi, prime minister of India, suggested the international day during his address to the U.N. General Assembly in September 2014.
Modi selected June 21 for the observance because it was “the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and has special significance in many parts of the world.”
He also said: “Yoga is an invaluable gift of India’s ancient tradition. It embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfillment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and the nature.”
The U.N. General Assembly adopted a resolution Dec. 11, 2014, declaring June 21 as the International Day of Yoga. The resolution was endorsed by 175 member states, a record number., according to the United Nations.
For ordering information for the International Day of Yoga pane of 10 stamps, visit the UNPA website; send an email; telephone 800-234-8672; fax 212-963-9854; or write to UNPA, Box 5900, Grand Central Station, New York, NY 10163-5900.
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