Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Muslims Ban Yoga

Malaysian Islamic leaders have issued a ruling against Muslims practicing yoga. They recognize its Hindu essence and claim that Islam should meet all of its adherents needs. If only more Christians realized the Hindu nature of yoga and relied exclusively on Christian spiritual practices.

And, by the way, the enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend. Nor should yoga be legally proscribed. Freedom of religion means the right to chose a false religion, the right to be wrong.


Kevin Winters said...

I've been trying to wrap my mind around the argument that yoga must essentially be Hindi in nature (hence the delay in my responding here). I've been doing yoga for two years and teaching yoga for about 7 months. Both in my personal practice and in my teaching I never rely on chakras or Brahman or even the view of the Greater Self.

The primary thing I focus on is using the very natural capacities of attention and concentration directed at the body during the practice. Yet I also get the physical and mental benefits that are traditionally described by yogis.

Are you arguing that I am a closet Hindu in my teaching and that even though I have never referred to chakras or Brahman in my teaching (and see no reason to do so, not only because I don't believe it, but because the large majority of benefits traditionally described by yogis does not require it), I am in fact teaching about both?

Douglas Groothuis, Ph.D. said...

The historic and philosophical roots on yoga are Hindu. This may or may not be revealed to yoga students early on. It will be later, since the strategy is hook people through the good physical sensations and then pull them into the metaphysics, which are not theistic.

I advise you to get out while you can. Take on the yoke of Christ. That is sufficient.