yoga-1996209_640

Christian conservatives are afraid of the fictional retreat of Christianity

Matt Walsh, a Christian blogger, has termed yoga as a kind of pagan practice. He has also warned those who are Christians and follow yoga may be possessed by demons. He compared yoga activity with Ouija boards.

Christians Beware! Yoga is Evil Blogger Warns

Doing yoga, as per his opinion, is equal to playing with fire. Walsh even ventured the opinion that a few practitioners may also be sent to hell. To explain his stand, he said that it is inconceivable to him that a pagan ritual can help a person to reach heaven.

Walsh is not alone. A number of Christian conservatives hold similar opinions. Betsy Woodruff of the National Review has examined the book Ten Commandments to An Extraordinary Life, written by E.W Jackson, the pastor and gubernatorial candidate from Virginia to understand his views on yoga. Jackson did not disappoint. He stated in his book that the aim of meditation is to make oneself devoid of all worldly selves. If such a thing happens, the pastor pointed out, Satan may come in and occupy that space. He then went on to warn his readers that they must be cautious of any spiritual practice which tells them to empty their inner selves. If they are not cautious, the inner selves will be filled by entities they do not want to have.

Jackson's views are shared by Christian conservatives across different denominations. Similar views have been echoed by R. Albert Mohler Jr., the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President. His comments made in 2010 ignited a passionate discussion on the subject of Christians and yoga. He claimed that yoga's increasing acceptance indicates Biblical Christianity retreating in the Western world. He then went on to admit that although there is nothing wrong with a little physical exercise, and the yoga positions by themselves do not matter much. Mohler's main objection is that that these physical poses are done so that spiritual aims can be met. Christians, he is afraid, may turn into polytheists if they continue to pursue this practice. Father Gabriele Amorth of the said in 2011 that the practice of yoga is a Satanic activity.

Secular analysts have surmised that such talk may feel crazy to the rationalist but reveals a lot about the many tensions suffered by the faithful when they live in a religiously diverse and multicultural society. They want to participate and stay true to their beliefs.

Resources

Follow the Conversation on Twitter