Christianity and Yoga

Perhaps you’ve heard about the recent article Al Mohler wrote about whether Christians should have any part or association with yoga. Mohler believes Christians should not practice yoga at all. Apparently his article received quite a bit of negative feedback and this morning I read a response article to Mohler by John Mark Reynolds. Reynolds takes a slightly different approach to the issue than Mohler does. I respect both men and appreciate their insights on various issues. Both of their perspectives on Christianity and yoga are worth taking the time to read.

What I found most interesting and troubling was the type of comments Al Mohler recounts he received from his original article. He did not receive comments from believers calmly and rationally discussing the merits of yoga. Instead, he’s been getting fairly rude emails from those who call themselves Christians!

The issue of whether Christians should participate in yoga is secondary in my mind at this moment. (It is an interesting question and one worth considering.) Regardless of where Christians fall on this issue though, their positions should not be based on emotions or what makes them feel better. If a Christian believes yoga is acceptable, then he should be able to defend his position rationally and from Scripture. Similarly, a Christian who holds that yoga is unbiblical should be able to demonstrate his position from the Bible.

I admit the issue of yoga is not something I have given a great deal of thought too…although I believe I would tend to lean toward Al Mohler’s position. Regardless though, I would encourage all believers not to react with anger and insults to Mohler (or anyone else they disagree with). Take the time to understand your position in light of Scripture and be able to defend your position coherently, and most importantly, biblically.

~ Melinda ~

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2 Responses to Christianity and Yoga

  1. thesauros says:

    I’ve found it alarming at the seeming large number of those who identify as Christians defending the use of yoga in their lives. Surely there are other ways of exercise that don’t carry the baggage that yoga does. And when the instructors of yoga bristle at the charge that yoga is ‘only’ exercise, that you send up warning flags.

    The pull for those who wish to follow Jesus is always, always, always, downward into secular society. In His command to “follow Me” i.e., “Become like Me,” Jesus set before us totally counter cultural paradigm for living in which if we are not swimming against the social current in our attempts to follow Jesus, we are then going with the flow. I’m with Mohler on this one.

  2. bekahcubed says:

    It’s been interesting seeing the blog posts and comments fly back and forth over this one. I’m not sure where I stand (although I’m probably LESS likely to side with Mohler on this one)–and don’t have too compelling a reason to figure out where I stand since I don’t currently do yoga and don’t foresee any time in the near future where I might have time or inclination to take it up. Seems to me there are enough ways to stretch and do core-type exercises without having to do yoga. But that’s just me 🙂

    I agree that whatever position you take, it’s best to support it with Scripture rather than simply responding out of emotion.

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