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According to Pat Robertson, no. His reason, yoga makes you unintentionally pray to Hindu gods, which I assume is an un-Christian thing to do.
This Christian site agrees with him:
The question becomes, is it possible for a Christian to isolate the physical aspects of yoga as simply a method of exercise, without incorporating the spirituality or philosophy behind it? I don't believe so. Yoga originated with a blatantly anti-Christian philosophy, and that philosophy has not changed. It teaches one to focus on oneself instead of on the one true God. It encourages its participants to seek the answers to life's difficult questions within their own conscience instead of in the Word of God. It also leaves one open to deception from God's enemy, who searches for victims that he can turn away from God (1 Peter 5:8).
But there's always the other side of the coin. Google "Christian yoga" and you’d find many sites promoting yoga as a way to share their deep devotion.
God is good!
The Outstretched philosophy is simple: we believe God will bless our sincere efforts at deepening a relationship with Him. He wants our fellowship and appreciates creative approaches to seeking His face. This is why Outstretched is dedicated to a Christ-centered pursuit of physical healing and spiritual growth through a practice of yoga.
This Christian approach to yoga simply allows us to combine these two essential goals: becoming physically healthy and spiritually healthy. We become more spiritually healthy through the yoga practice by calming our minds and quieting ourselves to the point that we can tune out the world's frequency and tune into God's frequency.
Being quiet with God allows us to create enough psychological and spiritual space that God can truly create an inner sanctuary in us. Being quiet enough to hear our Lord's voice is not optional-- it's essential for growth. Let God bless your efforts to get closer to Him and the joy-filled, healthy life He has planned for you!
How the eff can you unintentionally pray to a certain god? That's one of the dumbest things I've ever heard. Kind of like when I was 5 and was told by the Baptists that kneeling to pray means you're praying to the devil.
Originally posted by makeda:
Ah, my youth was full of this kind of stuff. No meditation, no horoscopes, no stories about supernatural creatures. It's all works of the devil.
Were you prohibited from Ouija boards? I was. At least it wasn't as bad as the girl next door, who wasn't allowed to watch Fantasia.
Christianity co-opts everything. It's part of a long tradition of absorbing things and mutating them to fit its purposes. A co-worker once told me he was taking lessons in 'Christian Saxophone'. Nothing is off limits.
It would make a lot more sense to me if a Catholic held this belief, since they believe the act itself is the important part of a sacrament.
As a protestant and a communication major, any act is just a symbol. Faith is the important thing, practice is not.
ETA: I do understand the resistance to horoscopes, ouija boards and the like, since the idea is to "believe" in them. But even that, IMHO, is making a mountain out of a molehill.
[http://This message has been edited by Jamers04 (edited Nov-29-2007).|http://This message has been edited by Jamers04 (edited Nov-29-2007).]
from what i've been told, if you truly embrace yoga, it approaches the level of being it's own religion. if that's the case, then no, a Christian could not practice yoga.
however, apparently there are some "westernized" off-shoots of yoga that are essentially stretching classes. i guess you just get a good workout without first becoming one with the universe. kind of like running.