This day of celebration was created by the founder of the Laughter Yoga movement, Dr. Madan Kataria from India in 1998. Its intent is “to build up a global consciousness of brotherhood and friendship through laughter.” This is done through the incredibly bizarre practise of laughter yoga, which is probably the one of the most unsettling group activities to view as an outsider. Basically, those involved in laughter yoga gather together and force laughter. This is based on the belief that the same physical and mental benefits that come with involuntary laughter will also result from voluntary laughter, thus leading to a “joy cocktail” that will infect others as those who experienced the laughter yoga session go out into the world and interact with others. In reality this involves members pairing up and maintaining eye contact with each other as they participate in laughter exercises where the forced, fake laughter slowly turns into real laughter. Which totally isn’t creepy at all.
On this special day laughter groups are encourage to perform this strange activity in a very public setting such as a public park, city square or auditoriums and this is then followed by a prayer for world peace and a message from Dr. Kataria. In India they gather first in a public park and then have a Peace March, carrying banners promoting laughter and the laughter yoga clubs and march throughout their area, performing laughter exercises in different locations.
I’ve included the above video, which is an introduction to how to do laughter yoga…have fun.
~ Darcie Rae
Official world laughter day website: http://www.laughteryoga.org/events
I ❤ Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laughter_Yoga