Yoga retreats, some charging as much as 4495 dollars, are becoming popular world over.
Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat in Queensland (Australia) is said to be a destination to soothe your soul and may cost up to 4265 dollars for seven days. Semperviva Yoga Holidays in Kythira (Greece), besides twice-a-day yoga, also offer sunrise meditation. Krista Cahill Yoga retreat in Bora Bora (French Polynesia) is called "Yoga in Paradise" and this "exclusive" retreat from June 11-18 costs 2950 dollars per person upon double occupancy. Fiji Yoga Retreat is a "week of relaxation and restoration" and includes "Yoga Nidra" and sun salutations. Ashtanga Yoga in Tuscany is a weeklong retreat in Tuscan countryside in Italy.
There is"Yoga for Foodies Retreat" in Napa Valley of California (USA). "Eat.Pray.Move" retreat on the border of Tuscany and Umbria in Italy is luring for pumpkin risotto, pasta al forno, slow roasted fennel with red onions, salads with wild rocket, pecorino and fresh figs.
"Yoga, Bike and Wine Retreat" in Loire Valley of France claims to be "relaxed, experiential and sensory" and includes cycling through the Loire Valley. "Yoga and Service Retreats" are organized by an American yogi in Haiti, Peru, India (Kerala), and Bali, and will practice "uplifting" yoga and service to the community where these are held. There is a weeklong "Yoga Ski/Ride Adventure" in Chamonix (France) besides "ladies only" "Yoga and Surf Retreats" on Australia's east coast.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, termed these a "misdirected" approach to yoga for mercantile greed.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, stressed that yoga was a mental and physical discipline by means of which the human-soul (jivatman) united with universal-soul (parmatman). Some sages had described yoga as the silencing of all mental transformations, which lead to the total realization of the Supreme Self. Some had used yoga attempting to gain liberation by removing all sensory barriers. For Patanjali, author of the basic text, the Yoga Sutra, yoga was a methodical effort to attain perfection, through the control of the different elements of human nature, physical and psychical.
Rajan Zed further said that yoga was one of the six systems of orthodox Hindu philosophy whose traces went back to around 2000 BCE.
About 16 million Americans, including many celebrities, are said to practice yoga.