June 21, 2016 1:13 PM EDT

In 2014, the United Nations declared June 21st, the summer solstice, as the International Day of Yoga. Ahead of the second annual celebration, yoga enthusiasts got together in mass gatherings around the world, from New Delhi to New York City.

The summer solstice has special significance in the yogic tradition. It is said that it was on the summer solstice that Adiyogi, the first yogi, met his disciples, who would go on to introduce and disperse the knowledge of yoga to the world.

Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, in his call for the recognition of the day, 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.”

Appropriately, Modi, himself, participated in a mass yoga session on June 21st in Chandigarh, India.

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