Mystic master and spiritual guru Anandmurti Gurumaa on Wednesday described the practice of yoga as an ancient all-encompassing discipline to be enjoyed by people from various walks of life, and said no person or country had any business to patent it.
Interacting with select media persons here ahead of a five-day-long camp on ways to promote the management of stress on a day-to-day basis, Gurumaa, who originally hails from Amritsar, criticised moves in the United States to patent yoga.
"Knowledge is not anyone's property. Everyone has a right to it. Yoga is a discipline that has been handed down through the ages, through time, and it has taken generations of people to understand it, propagate it and derive individual benefit from it," she said.
She apparently was reacting to Bikram Yoga founder and US-based Bikram Choudhary's move in May this year to get a copyright for his method of teaching yoga, which has shocked yoga enthusiasts and experts in India.
There is a unanimous feeling in India that the idea of patenting knowledge like yoga is absurd and violates the ancient Indian art.
Anandmurti Gurumaa is the latest to join a bandwagon of critics against this move to patent yoga, even as the U.S. Patent Office has officially issued 150 yoga-related copyrights, 134 trademarks on yoga accessories and 2,315 yoga trademarks.
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