Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by RiverJordan, Dec 5, 2013.

  1. Back in high school, one of my coaches started the team on yoga training. Nothing overly fancy, just a lot of unique ways to stretch your body!

    Since then, I've kept it up and try and do at least 40 minutes twice a week. In my experience, it's a fantastic way to maintain flexibility (especially after sitting in class or at a computer most of the day), and I plan on continuing to do yoga for as long as I can.

    I know some churches have "Christian Yoga" sessions, where they combine the physical aspects of yoga with Christian spiritual elements. There seems to be a heavy focus on Psalms 46:10, "Be still and know that I am God".

    OTOH, some Christians strongly oppose doing yoga, Christian version or otherwise, with some even going so far as to call it demonic. The argument there seems to be that because of its roots in eastern religions and their use of it is to become one with their god, therefore "it’s nearly impossible to practice yoga and divorce it from its spiritual elements". Interestingly, the author of that article even includes a quote from a Hindu lamenting the fact that yoga has become "Americanized" and is having its eastern religious elements stripped from it! So on one case we have a Christian saying you can't separate yoga from its eastern spirituality, but on the other we have Hindu complaining about eastern spirituality being separated from yoga!

    Anyways, it's obvious which side of this issue I'm on. What do others here think?
  2. Are you practicing Eastern meditation by clearing your mind and chanting strange phrases in the hopes that some non-Christian spirit will enter your body? If not, then I say you're good.

    As for those that are against it, respect their views. They do so because they do not want to take any chance of allowing that which is not of God into themselves. You cannot force people to act against their convictions.
  3. That's a pretty concise answer, Ban. On another thread we've been talking about 1 Cor 8 (on eating food sacrificed to idols), and I think what you said fairly adequately sums up Paul's teaching:

    ...we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one (v4)
    However not all men have this knowledge... (v7)
    ...But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. (v9)

    We may know that stretching is just stretching, but "Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies" (v1). Acting in love toward one another, we wouldn't want to tempt a brother or sister to betray their conscience.
  4. My wife used to be a Yoga instructor. She has met some instructors who were promoting the practice of spirituality of Buddhism and Hinduism which made her very uncomfortable, but that wasn't common. Some studios practice the spirituality parts of it, but many studios only focus on the stretches.

    What people should not do is participate in non-Christian Eastern spirituality. As a general rule of thumb, Christian spirituality is interpersonal (between persons) while non-Christian Eastern spirituality focuses the practitioner on the self. The latter should be avoided out of respect for God.
  5. I do meditate from time to time. It helps with focus and stress. But no, no chanting or anything like that! :D

    Not sure why you felt the need to say that to me. I'm certainly not trying to force anyone to do anything.
  6. I said it for exactly the same reasons that Roads posted what he did. Simply that it was something that needed to be added to my train of thought. It wasn't directed as an attack on you.
  7. No worries. :) I didn't take it as an attack. It's just when you said "You cannot force people...", I thought the "you" was referring to me as if I was advocating forcing people to do yoga or something.
  8. Sorry, the English language lacks that third person "you" that other languages posses, and the fact that I tend to think very much in that "editorial you" way causes some confusion. I really need to train myself to adjust the way I word these things.

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