Etymology and Definition / Aims / Philosophy / Origins and History
"Sanskrit, literally, yoking, from
yunakti: 'he yokes'; akin to Latin jungere: 'to join'. A
Hindu theistic philosophy teaching the suppression of all activity
of body, mind, and will in order that the self may realize its
distinction from them and attain liberation" [Miriam Webster Online
"A Mystic and ascetic Hindu
discipline for achieving union with the supreme spirit through
meditation, prescribed postures, controlled breathing..." [Webster's
New World Dictionary].
"From Sanskrit (yoga, 'yoking,
union'), from Proto-Indo-European yewg- ('to join') (whence
also English yoke). Any of several Hindu disciplines aimed at
training the consciousness for a state of perfect spiritual insight
and tranquillity; especially a system of exercises practiced to
promote control of the body and mind" [source].
"A Sanskrit term meaning 'to yoke'
that is used to describe a process of spiritual discipline or
harnessing of physical and mental powers to attain self-control and
ultimate enlightenment. Generally
'yoga' means a system of meditation that is essential to Buddhism,
the Hindu tradition and Jainism. It shares many associated
assumptions, such as a view of karma,
dharma and some notion of
metempsychosis. The term also refers
to one of the six schools of Hindu philosophy that teaches and
utilizes the practice of yoga to attain liberation, which is
conceived of as a state of perfect isolation" [Pocket Dictionary of
New Religious Movements].
What Yogis Say:
"'Yoga' is a Sanskrit word that
comes from the root-word yuj that means 'to join'. Yoga,
then, is both union and the means to union. What do we join through
yoga? Two eternal beings: God, the Infinite being, and the
individual spirit that is finite being. In essence they are one, and
according to yogic philosophy all spirits originally dwelt in
consciousness (sic) of that oneness"
[Swami Nirmalananda Giri,
"Yoga is the science that teaches us
the method of uniting the individual soul with the Supreme Soul, of
merging the individual soul will in the Cosmic Will. ... Real Yoga
is the attainment of the highest divine knowledge through conscious
communion with God. Yoga transmutes the unregenerate nature of the
student and raises him to the highest state of Divine Glory and
Splendour" [Sri Swami Sivananda, Yoga for the West, Publisher's
Note, quoted at:
"The word literally means 'union'.
Similarly, if we examine the English word 'religion', we find that
its early Latin derivative is religio, 'to bind again'.
But to bind with what? With God, who is dwelling within. Through
ignorance we have forgotten that we possess this divinity within.
Hence, it is the purpose of yoga to reveal it to us"
Prabhavananda, Yoga - True and False].
"The simple, immutable fact is that
yoga originated from the Vedic or Hindu culture. Its techniques were
not adopted by Hinduism, but originated from it. These facts need to
be unequivocally stated in light of some of the things being written
to the contrary by yoga teachers. The effort to separate yoga from
Hinduism must be challenged because it runs counter to the
fundamental principles upon which yoga itself is premised, ... Efforts to separate
yoga from its spiritual center reveal ignorance of the goal of yoga.
... Yoga ... was intended by the Vedic seers as an instrument which
can lead one to apprehend the Absolute, Ultimate reality, called the
Brahmin reality, or God.
If this attempt to co-opt yoga into their (Western and/or Christian) own tradition
continues, in several decades of incessantly spinning the untruth as
truth through re-labelings such as 'Christian yoga', who will know
that yoga is - or was - part of Hindu culture? The giant tree of
yoga ... cannot deny that its roots are located in a specific place
Hinduism. Seeking shelter under its vast umbrella does not entitle
you to change the tree" [Professor Subhas
Tiwari, Yoga Renamed is Still Hindu,
"Literally 'yoking', it refers to
union with Brahman. There are several kinds and schools of Yoga, and
various techniques, but all have this same ultimate goal of union
with the Absolute. The positions and breath control are intended as
aids to Eastern meditation, and a means of controlling the body in
disciplining oneself to renounce all desires which the body might
otherwise impose upon the mind. Yoga is designed specifically to
induce a state of trance which supposedly allows the mind to be
drawn upward into a yoking with Brahman. It is a means of withdrawal
from the world of illusion to seek the one true Reality. If one
desires to achieve physical fitness only, exercises designed for
that specific purpose ought rather to be chosen. No part of Yoga can
be separated from the philosophy behind it"
[Rabi R. Maharaj,
Death of a Guru, 1977, p208].
"According to the Yoga Sutras
of Patanjali, the ultimate aim of Yoga is to reach 'Kaivalya'
(emancipation or ultimate freedom). This is the experience of one's
innermost being or 'soul' (the Purusa). Then one becomes free
of chains of cause and effect (Karma) which tie us to
continual reincarnation. ... Yoga is therefore a spiritual quest"
"The origins of yoga are believed to
... [stem] from the oral traditions of Yogis, where knowledge of
Yoga was handed down from Guru (spiritual teacher) to
Sisya (spiritual student) all the way back to the originators of
Yogis, 'the Rishis', who first began investigation into the
nature of reality and man's inner world" [source].
"[Y]our karma, your births and
deaths - all which can be overcome if you enter into the substance
of nature by understanding its laws, by becoming cosmic itself in
essence. Towards this end, yoga takes us" [Swami Krishnananda,
"Hinduism is the soul of yoga 'based
as it is on Hindu Scripture and developed by Hindu sages. Yoga opens
up new and more refined states of mind, and to understand them one
needs to believe in and understand the Hindu way of looking at God'"
[Sannyasin Arumugaswami, Managing Editor of Hinduism Today,
"I received an e-mail from a staff
member of the Classical Yoga Hindu Academy in New Jersey. The staff
member wrote, 'Yes, all of yoga is Hinduism. Everyone should be
aware of this fact'. This staff member included that she didn't
appreciate my 'running down the great Hindu/Yogic religion" [source].
"As Hindus who live the Yogic
lifestyle, we appreciate when others understand that all of Yoga is
all about the Hindu religion. Modern so-called 'yoga' is dishonest
to Hindus and to all non-Hindus such as the Christians"
instructor at the Classical Yoga Hindu Academy, quoted at:
What Others Say:
"Yoga means 'to yoke with' and refers
to the union with Brahman. Yoga is a combination of physical
exercises and the spiritual. No part of yoga can be separated from
the philosophy behind it. If you do the exercises you accept the
philosophy" [Reachout Trust, Influences From the East].
"Yoga is derived from the
Sanskrit word yug, which means 'to yoke'. ... A yoke is a
crossbar that joins two draft animals at the neck so they can work
together; the term, therefore, is applied metaphorically to people
being joined together or united in a cause. In Hinduism, as in many
religions, union is desired with nothing less than God or the
Absolute, and yoga is the system that Hindus have developed to
achieve that end [source].
"Yoga cannot be reduced to a mere
form of psychophysical therapy. It aims to annihilate human
psycho-mental life and anything that can define personhood. Yoga has
always been considered a path toward transcendence, a way of rising
above the world of illusion and reaching the Ultimate reality. It
was and will always be religious and this aspect has never been
doubted in the East" [source].
"Liberation of the soul from its
bondage to the material world is a central goal of all orthodox
schools of Hindu philosophy, and for each school, some system of
yoga is the means to achieving this end" [source].
"The historic purpose behind yoga,
therefore, is to achieve union with the Hindu concept of God. This
is the purpose behind virtually all of the Eastern varieties of
yoga, including those we encounter in the West. This does not mean
it is the purpose of every practitioner of yoga, for many people
clearly are not practicing it for spiritual reasons but merely to
enhance their physical appearance, ability, or health. ... [However]
... when someone participates in a practice that was developed with
a specific purpose in mind by someone else, it is possible and even
probable that on subtle levels the participant who does not have the
original purpose in mind nonetheless will be moved along in the
direction of fulfilling that purpose" [source].
"Yoga is an ancient practice
combining meditation and training the body. It originated in India
at least 5,000 years ago. The main paths of yoga, its philosophy and
its application to everyday life, are described in the Bhagavad Gita
- the Hindu scriptures - written in the sixth century BC. The word
itself comes from a Sanskrit word meaning yoke or union. It is about
harnessing a person to a discipline, and at the same time unifying
the parts of the self - body, mind, spirit - and also unifying the
individual self with something greater and transcendent. The term
yoga therefore has a broad definition, being a way of living and a
way of understanding life. To 'do' yoga in this broad sense is to
practice the Hindu religion. Teachers of yoga claim that followers
of any religion or belief can practice yoga. This is not surprising
as Hinduism will accept a very wide range of beliefs and practices
including those from other religions"
"Exercises (physical, mental or
spiritual) based on Eastern metaphysical assumptions designed to aid
in enlightenment or self-realization. Goals sometimes include
altered states of consciousness or uniting the practitioner with the
impersonal pantheistic God. ... Yoga philosophy is based on the
concept of reincarnation and is drawn from the Upanishads and other
Hindu scriptures" [quoted at:
"Yoga was developed to escape this
'unreal' world of time and sense and to reach moksha, the
Hindu heaven - or to return to the 'void' of the Buddhist. With its
breathing exercises and limbering up positions, yoga is promoted in
the West for enhancing health and better living, but in the
Far east, where it originated, it is understood to be a way of
dying. ... The physical aspects of yoga, however, which attract
many Westerners, were, in fact, originally developed and practiced
for spiritual goals" [Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ,
"All forms of yoga ... spring
from beliefs that man can escape his lower or illusory self and
experience liberation by uniting with the divine. But is this union,
if possible, really liberation? Who or what is the god of yoga? Is
the obliteration of your identity into an impersonal energy really
"Yoga's goal is 'Self-exaltation',
'Realizing' ones own 'divinity' and 'yoking with the Universal
"The true goal of yoga is to destroy
the person (who is only a false self, an illusion) so that the
impersonal Brahman (the alleged real self) may be experienced" [source].
"[T]he yogic path [is] a progressive
dismantling of human personality ending in complete abolition. With
every step (anga) of Yoga, what we call 'man' is demolished a
little more" [quoted at
"The aim of Yoga is to realise
liberation from the human condition. To achieve this liberation,
various psychological, physical, mental, and mystical (occult)
methods have been devised. All those methods are anti-social
(sometimes even anti-human) in that Yoga prescribes a way of life
which says: 'This mortal life is not worth living'" [source].
"Yoga wants to get students to the
point of complete numbness in their minds. God, on the other hand,
wants you to be transformed by the renewing of your mind through his
"Yoga was introduced by Lord Krishna
in the Bhagavad Gita as the sure way to Hindu heaven; and
Shiva (one of the most feared Hindu deities, known as 'The
Destroyer') is addressed as Yogeshwara, Lord of Yoga. One of
the most authoritative Hatha Yoga texts, the fifteenth-century
Hathayoga-Pradipika by Svatmarama, lists Lord Shiva as the first
Hatha Yoga teacher" [Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ,
"[Y]oga is sold in the West as
science, but it is in truth religion. It is promoted in the West as
beneficial to health, but in the East it is a technique for dying.
Yoga is a Sanskrit word that means 'yoking' and refers to union with
Brahmin, the chief god in Hinduism. Thus, yoga's ultimate goal is to
reach moksha, allegedly escaping the world of illusion (maya)
of time and sense into liberation from the endless cycle of birth
and death and rebirth through reincarnation" [Dave Hunt, Yoga and
the Body of Christ, (2006), pp.157-158].
Self-Realisation / The Divine/God Within
"From the yogic perspective, all
human beings are 'born divine' and each human being has at core a
soul (atman) that dwells eternally in the changeless,
infinite, all-pervading reality (brahman). In Patanjali's
classic statement of this view, tat tvam asi (thou art that),
we already are that which we seek. We are God in disguise. We are
already inherently perfect, and we have the potential in each moment
to wake up to this true, awake, and enlightened nature. ... In the
sophisticated psychology of yoga, avidya, or ignorance of our
true nature, is the central problem of the human self and the source
of all suffering. In other words, we've simply forgotten who we are.
We've forgotten that we're the fantastic dance of energy and
consciousness, the divine play (lila) of being and becoming.
And what is the source of this alienation? Not sin nor wrongdoing
nor psychopathology of any kind. We're simply misidentified"
[Stephen Cote, 'Standing Psychotherapy On Its Head', Yoga
Journal, May-June 2001, p104].
"We are all aware that yoga means
'union' and that the practice of yoga unites body, breath, and mind,
lower and higher energy centers and, ultimately, self and God, or
higher Self. But more broadly, yoga directs our attention to the
unity or oneness that underlies our fragmented experiences and
equally fragmented world. Family, friends, the Druze guerrilla in
Lebanon, the great whale migrating north - all share the same
essential [divine] nature" [Yoga Journal, May-June 1984].
"[Y]oga theory teaches that
everything is, in its true inner nature, divine - not only divine
but ultimately equal to everything else - everything from God and
the devil to the athlete and the AIDS virus" [source].
"[T]he Hindu concept [is] that god
[is] everything, that the Creator and the Creation [are] one and the
same. If there [is] only One Reality, then Brahman [is] evil as well
as good, death as well as life, hatred as well as love. That [makes]
everything meaningless, life an absurdity. It [is] not easy to
maintain one's sanity and the view that good and evil, love and
hate, life and death [are] One Reality" [source].
"Yoga theory also teaches that in
their outer nature, everything is maya, or illusion. ... [O]nly in
his inner spirit is man divine; his 'outer nature', of body and
personality, are ultimately a delusion that separates him from
awareness of his real inner divinity. Thus, another purpose of yoga
must be to slowly dismantle the outer personality - man's illusory
part - so the supposed impersonal divinity can progressively 'merge'
from within his hidden divine consciousness. ... Yoga is, after all,
a religious practice seeking to produce 'union' with an impersonal
ultimate reality, such as Brahman or Nirvana. If ultimate reality is
impersonal, of what value is one's own personality? For a person to
achieve true 'union' with Brahman, his 'false' self must be
destroyed and replaced with awareness of his true divine nature.
That is the specific goal of yoga" [source].
"The tree of knowledge has indeed
yielded much fruit of great variety, sweet, poisonous, bitter,
wholesome, according to our use of it. But is it not more imperative
than ever that we cultivate the tree, that we nourish its roots?"
[B. Iyengar, The Illustrated Light on Yoga, p.xi].
"...the classical mystical
experience that is understood as a union with the divine. ... (1)
Feeling of being transported beyond the self to a new realm; (2)
Feeling of communion with the 'divine'; (3) Sense of ecstasy and
exultation; (4) Heightened state of awareness; (5) Loss of
self-object boundaries; (6) Powerful sense of noesis
[intellectualism]; (7) Distortion of time-sense, particularly
time-distortion; (8) Perceptual changes: Synesthesia and Dampening
or heightening; (9) Hallucinations: often more of the visual than
the auditory type. A frequently described vision ... is 'the
sensation of seeing and being enveloped in "light"' (Buckley)" [source].
"[It] is an exercise in futility
unless innate goodness resides within man at his very core. Here's
why: if man has an evil nature, as the Bible teaches, then it's
impossible for him to change himself. In other words, if I'm
innately evil, I will always be evil because there is nothing
within me to enable me to change. But if I'm good within but
am experiencing problems of living, then through various
psychological methods or techniques, I should be able to tap into,
utilize, or realize that goodness and thus remedy the adversities I
experience. All the psychotherapeutic selfisms, from self-love to
self-esteem to self-image to self-actualization to self-realization
- and ultimately to self-deification - are predicated upon the
innate goodness of one's nature" [source].
The Yogic Greeting
"Namaste, often used in Yoga, is a
Hindu mudra and greeting. A mudra is a hand position usually
derived from Hindu deities and has spiritual significance" [source].
"[T]he word 'namaste', often said at
the close of yoga classes, means, 'I bow to the god within you'" [source].
"Namaste means respecting the
supersoul (parmatma - The lord [sic]) in myself and in others. Folding
both the hands represents that we are paying respect to the Lord
residing in others with all our senses (gyanendriyas and karmendriya)
including heart and mind (represented by palm)" [comment at:
Eight Limbs or Disciplines of Yoga
The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
"[T]he yamas (restraints),
niyamas (observances), asana (postures), pranayama
(breathing), pratyahara (withdrawal of senses), dharana
(concentration), dhyani (meditation), samadhi
(absorption). As we explore these eight limbs, we begin by refining
our behaviour in the outer world, and then we focus inwardly until
we reach samadhi (liberation, enlightenment)"
"Yama - Universal ethics:
Non-violence, truthfulness, non-stealing, sexual restraint and
non-acquisitiveness / Niyama - Principles of self
conduct: purity, contentment, intense dedication or austerity, study
of self and [vedic] scriptures and self surrender /
Asana - practice of the postures / Pranayama
- Breath control / Pratyahara - withdrawal and
control of the senses / Dharana - concentration
/ Dhyana - meditation / Samadhi - a
state of higher consciousness where the sense of self (ego)
dissolves in the object of mediation and the individual self exists
in its own pure nature" [source].
"The eight limbs of yoga involve
strict moral, physical, and mental disciplines. They are (1) moral
restraint, (2) religious observance, (3) postures (asanas),
(4) breath control (pranayama), (5) sense withdrawal, (6)
concentration, (7) meditative absorption, and (8) enlightenment (samadhi).
A consideration of the limbs quickly reveals that yoga is a
demanding autosoteric (salvation based on self-effort) system,
similar to original Theravada Buddhism with its eightfold path,
which historically preceded Patanjali's yoga system and probably
influenced it" [source].
The eight limbs of yoga "are defined
within the context of a basic Hindu worldview (reincarnation, karma,
and moksha) and intended to support and reinforce Hindu beliefs.
Each 'limb' has a spiritual goal and together they forma unit:
(1) Yama (self-control, restraints, devotion to the gods
[e.g. Krishna] or the impersonal God [e.g. Brahman]); (2)
Niyama (religious duties, prohibitions, observances); (3)
Asana (proper postures for yoga practices; these represent
the first stage in the isolation of consciousness and are vital
components for 'transcending the human condition'); (4)
Pranayama (the control and directing of the breath and the
alleged divine energy within the human body [prana] to promote
health and spiritual [occult] consciousness and evolution);
(5) Prayahara (sensory control or deprivation, i.e.,
withdrawal of the sense from attachment to external objects);
(6) Dharana (deeper concentration, or mind control);
(7) Dhyana (deep contemplation from occult mediation);
(8) Samadhi (occult enlightenment or 'God' [Brahman]
realization, i.e., 'union' of the 'individual' with God. Because the
eight steps are interdependent, the steps of 'postures' and
'breathing' cannot logically be separated from the others. Thus, the
interdependence of all eight steps reveals why the physical
exercises of yoga are designed to prepare the body for the spiritual
(occult) changes that will allegedly help one realize godhood
Paths of Yoga
"Karma Yoga (spiritual union through correct
conduct [or good works]), Bhakti Yoga (spiritual union through
devotion to a Guru), Juana Yoga (spiritual union through hidden
knowledge), Raja Yoga (spiritual union through mental
control), Hatha Yoga (spiritual union through body
control/meditation), Kundalini Yoga (spiritual union through
focusing inner energy), and Tantra Yoga (spiritual union through sexual
practices)" [quoted at:
"Four main paths (Margas),
according to the Bhagavad Gita, by which to reach the
ultimqte goal of Yoga - 'Kaivalya': (1) Jnana Marga,
the path of Knowledge in which one learns to discriminate between
what is real and what is illusory, (2) Karma Marga, the path
of selfless work, (3) Bhakti Marga, the path of devotion, (4)
Yoga Marga, the path of control of the mind. ... From these
have come the various paths of yoga which can be followed: a)
Raja yoga involves mastery of the mind and senses in
Samadhi; essentially the advanced aspects of Patanjali's
astanga yoga, b) Hatha yoga is the yoga of the will which
involves cultivating ones energy to arouse kundalini
primarily by means of asana and pranayama, c)
Mantra yoga involves reciting sacred syllables to reach
perfection, d) Laya yoga involves absorption in god to
experience ultimate bliss, e) Bhakti yoga requires absolute
devotion to god to achieve the ultimate goal, f) Karma yoga
achieves this through selfless work without thought of personal
reward, g) Jnana yoga is the yoga of knowledge cultivation
the discrimination between spiritual reality and the illusion of the
material world" [source].
Schools of Yoga
"Various schools or styles of Yoga
have grown around each of these paths, which emphasise different
aspects of these paths, or a combination of them, ... Iyengar,
Astanga, Vini, Ananda, Anusara, Bikram, Integral, Kali Ray Tri,
Kripalu, Kundalini and Sivananda. ... 3 of the most popular schools
today - Iyengar, Astanga and Vini Yoga - were all developed by
students of Sri T. Krishnamacharya. ... It must always be remembered
that all these are merely different methods of reaching for the same
ultimate goal" [source].
(aka 'Physical') Yoga
"The purpose of Hatha Yoga is to
locate and activate the chakras (centers of energy), thereby raising
the kundalini (dominant spiritual power). ... By balancing two
streams, often known as ida (mental) and pingala (bodily) currents,
the sushumna nadi (current of the Self) is said to rise, opening
various chakras (cosmic powerpoints within the body, starting from
the base of the spine and ending right above the head) until samadhi
is attained" [source].
"Asanas and pranayama
are the two limbs of yoga that exercise the body. They were not
originally intended to be isolated from the other limbs of yoga, but
that is what has happened to a great extent in the West through the
promotion of hatha yoga, which is predominantly comprised of these
two limbs (although meditation is often included or encouraged at
the end of the session). It should be noted that in the Yoga Sutras
one does not find the emphasis on stretching the body into unusual
poses that is now associated with yoga, mainly through the influence
of hatha yoga. Patanjali's expressed concern was for the
practitioner to assume 'steady and easy' postures that would be
conducive to meditation" [source].
"It is also unfortunately true that
to a great many people in the West, yoga has come to be identified
with what in India we call hatha yoga, which mainly teaches
asanas or postures, and pranayama or breathing exercises
... [T]hese are limbs of Patanjali's Yoga; but hatha yoga emphasizes
them to the exclusion of everything else" [Swami Prabhavanada,
Yoga - True and False].
"The techniques of Hatha are given so
as to prepare a person's consciousness for the subtler metaphysics
of Raja Yoga" [source].
"Having thus solemnly saluted his
master, Yogi Svatmarama now presents Hatha Vidya (wisdom) solely and
exclusively for the attainment of Raja Yoga. For those who wander in
the darkness of conflicting creeds, unable to reach to the heights
of Raja Yoga, the merciful Yogi Svatmarama has lit the torch of
Hatha wisdom" [Swami Svatmarama, Hatha Yoga Pradipika,
"[T]he sole purpose of the physical
practices of Hatha Yoga is to suppress physical obstacles on the
Spiritual or Royal path of Raja Yoga and Hatha yoga is therefore
called 'the ladder to Raja Yoga'" [Alain Danielou, quoted in
"The numerous purely physical
procedures of yoga [unite] the parts of the body ... with the whole
of the mind and spirit, as ... in the pranayama exercises, where
prana is both the breath and the universal dynamics of the cosmos
... the elation of the body becomes one with the elation of the
spirit. ... Yoga practice is unthinkable, and would also be
ineffectual without the ideas on which it is based. It works the
physical and the spiritual into one another in an extraordinarily
complete way" [Carl Jung, Psychology and the East (1978),
"The goal of Hatha Yoga is to attain
the final reunion of Shakti with Shiva. Shakti, the self, is located
at the base of the spine as the dormant spiritual energy called
kundalini. The ascetic practice demanded to awakening
kundalini consists in certain physical exercise accompanied by
respiratory techniques. ... Given its religious background, Hatha
Yoga cannot be a mere physical training. The most important writing
of this school, the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, clearly states that
Hatha Yoga has to be taught only in order to reach the Raja Yoga
level (1:2), which means 'the integration of mind in a state where
the subject-object duality does not exist' (4:77), or in other
words, only in order that the self may merge with the impersonal
Ultimate Reality. Therefore, the attention granted to the body has a
single purpose: to make it fit for attaining control over the mind
and thus liberating the self"
"[Hatha yoga is] a process of control
of the gross body which aims at freeing the subtle body" [Alain Danielou, quoted in
"The typical middle-class Westerner,
taking yoga classes ... has little or no idea of the hows and whys
of yoga's seeming efficacy. In the traditional understanding,
physical yoga has a great deal more to do with the practitioner's
invisible 'subtle' body, than it does with the flesh and bones and
muscles which encase it. ... This subtle body is extremely complex,
but can be superficially described as consisting of 72,000 invisible
psychic channels called nadis, which constitute an other
dimensional body which directly corresponds to the physical, or
gross, body. The subtle body is connected to the gross body at
several points, with the seven predominant ones located at distinct
points ranging from the base of the spine to the top of the head.
These are called chakras, and they are believed to control
the various aspects of the consciousness of the individual. Physical
yoga finds its most refined expression when it teaches postures
which bring various channels within the subtle body into a specific
alignment with one another and thus alter the consciousness of the
practitioner in a specified way" [source].
"[W]hat about hatha yoga, the
less overtly spiritual form of yoga taught at most gyms? Even in
this format ... there are commonly used words and poses antithetical
to God's Word. For example, the word 'namaste', often said at the
close of yoga classes, means, 'I bow to the god within you'. The
sound 'om', chanted in many yoga classes, is meant to bring students
into a trance so they can join with the universal mind. And the
'salute to the sun' posture, used at the beginning of most classes,
pays homage to the Hindu sun god ... It's impossible to separate
Hindu spiritualism from yoga" [source].
"[W]hatever physical conditioning is
involved in any form of yoga, it is but a means to the spiritual
objective ... if one is interested in physical fitness, then by all
means adopt exercises specifically designed to that end. In
contrast, yoga, though parts of it may be physically beneficial, was
designed - through its physical positions, stretching, and breathing
exercises - to yoke practitioners with the Divine allegedly within
us all. One cannot adopt even the physical aspects of yoga without
becoming spiritually ensnared. This is a fact rooted in history,
which no amount of denial by Western yoga instructors can change"
[Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ, (2006), p.38].
"Most Westerners imagine that Hatha
Yoga (aka 'physical yoga') has nothing to do with Hinduism or
spirituality. ... This is a popular and deeply entrenched delusion
deliberately promoted among unsuspecting Westerners. If Hatha
Yoga is purely physical, why has it been handed down from 'spiritual
masters' known as yogis? Why is authentic Hatha Yoga always
associated with spiritual mediation aimed at 'self- realization'
(i.e. to 'realize one's oneness with 'God', as Hinduism teaches)? If
there are centers in the West that claim to offer a purely physical
Hatha Yoga for health benefits alone, why do they teach the very
same breathing exercises and positions that Paramahansa Yogananada
brought to the West from India as taught to him by his spiritual
guru, Sri Babaji? These techniques were all precisely developed over
centuries to induce subtle changes in states of consciousness
leading to 'self-realization'. They were not developed primarily for
physical benefits. ... If what Western yoga teachers offer merely
involves physical stretching and breathing exercises, as they claim,
why don't they promote it as such? Why do they persist in calling it
'yoga', while denying any connection to what yoga is? Why this
cover-up?" [Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ, (2006),
"The 'Soul' purpose of the asanas
(yoga poses) is to create a healthy body, calm mind and emotions in
order to enter the spirit realms. It is for this Soul purpose
that, of all the Hindu/Yogas, Hatha Yoga was supposed to be kept,
relatively, secret. Sages realized that the immature would
emphasize the body, thus completely distorting the spiritual intent.
feeling good at the expense of others is not an ethical choice.
Imagine treating Baptism and Communion as an Underwater Therapy and
Wine Tasting business. Envision a Fitness Rabbi, Diet Pope and
Gaming Imam! Picture Hot Baptism (at your local gym), Power
Mass and Gentle Genuflecting! How about a 200 hour Certified
Communion teacher greeting students with Hallelujah and denying any
Christian connection? How about marketing Baptism pants to
display one's physical accomplishments! As ridiculous as this
seems, this is exactly how callous, absurd and insulting is the New
Age Yoga crusade" [Swami Param, President of the Classical Yoga
Hindu Academy, Barnegat, New Jersey, USA, quoted at:
"I'd be quite upset if I was of the
Hindu faith in a country founded on Hinduism and suddenly this new
exercise program started sweeping over my nation that was based on
Christianity but without informing anyone of this while it was being
taught at schools, dance halls, fitness clubs and every place else
under the sun" [comment at:
"Kundalini is the
Divine Cosmic Energy in bodies. It is symbolised by a coiled and
sleeping serpent in the lowest bodily centre at the base of the
spinal column" [B. Iynegar, The Illustrated Light on Yoga,
"In Hindu mythology
and occult anatomy, the goddess Kundalini is thought of as a female
serpent lying dormant at the base of the spine. ... She represents
the female half of the divine polarity in man. While lying at the
base of the spine, she is separated from Shiva, her divine 'lover'
and masculine counterpart, who resides in the brain. When aroused by
yoga practices, she uncoils, travels up the spine toward her lover,
opening up the alleged psychic centers called chakras in the
process. When the crown or top chakra is reached, the union
of Shiva/Shakti occurs, supposedly leading the practitioner to
divine enlightenment and union with Brahman"
is known as Durga the creatrix, Chandi the fierce and bloodthirsty,
and Kali the destroyer. She is also Bhajangi the serpent. As Chandi
or Kali she has a garland of skulls around her neck and drinks human
blood" [Gopi Krishna, The Awakening of Kundalini, p.13].
"The easiest way to
understand kundalini is to acknowledge that there is a universal
spirit, sometimes referred to as God. God uncoils him/her/itself.
This uncoiling process is known as kundalini"
[S. K. Khlasa, KISS
Guide to Yoga, p.184].
"When aroused, [the Kundalini] can
rise through the chakras, ... creating physical symptoms ranging
from sensations of heat and tremors to involuntary laughing or
crying, talking in tongues, nausea, diarrhea or constipation,
rigidity or limpness, and animal-like movements and sounds" [source].
"Kundalini does not rise only in
those who know about it and actively seek to arouse it. A variety of
spiritual practices can bring it on, and it has been known to occur
in people who have done nothing consciously to awaken it" [source].
"The ascetic practice demanded for
awakening kundalini consists in certain physical exercises
accompanied by respiratory techniques [Hatha Yoga]. After
kundalini awakens, it travels through a spiritual channel (sushumna)
of the subtle body, which corresponds physically to the spine,
crossing seven important points called chakras ... Once
kundalini reaches the last chakra, it returns to its
primordial union with the impersonal Ultimate Reality, represented
by Shiva" [source].
"The practice of kundalini yoga
consists of a number of bodily postures, expressive movements and
utterances, characterlogical cultivations, breathing patterns, and
degrees of concentration. None of these postures and movements
should, according to scholars of Yoga be considered mere stretching
exercises or gymnastic exercises" [Quoted in comments section at:
"it is true that the yogic asanas
(physical positions) can have a dramatic effect upon the body
and may even lead to improved health. Likewise, the pranayama
(regulation of breathing) may seem to do the same. The ultimate goal
of all yoga, however, ... remains the awakening, through the
asanas and prananyama, the KUndalini 'divine power',
portrayed as a serpent coiled three and a half times when at rest at
the base of the spine. Awakened it moves up through the seven
chakras along the spine and bursts into the 'thousand-petalled
lotus' in the cerebral cortex. At that point, the yogi is flooded
with the divine ecstasy of the alleged union of atman (the
individual self) with Brahman (the universal self), resulting
in the self-realization of 'thou that art'. This could involve
tantra, with uncontrollable sexual urges, and other dangers. Thus
the ancient texts warn the novice yogi coming into self-realization
always to have his guru present for protection from potential
disaster. Such is the clear caveat repeated by all of the ancient
founders of authentic yoga. tragically, this fact is either not
known to, or is deliberately ignored by, most yoga instructors in
the west today" [Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ,
for more of the possible dangers of awakening the kundalini.
Asanas (Yogic Postures)
"It is usually taught today that Yoga
is nothing more than a method of maintaining body fitness, physical
vigor and mental health, etc., having nothing in common with
religion. This way of defining Yoga has in view primarily the
practice of asanas, well known today as an effective way of
inducing relaxation. However, ... the purpose of the asanas
is to immobilize the body, to bring it under control and to refuse
movement in order to help concentration. If the asanas are
performed without following the ten moral precepts and not as a step
on one's spiritual path toward liberation, they have nothing in
common with true Yoga" [source].
"Many asanas are based on postures
that honor Hindu deities who manifest themselves in forms such as
the sun, the tiger, the tree, the snake, etc. Asanas were
designed to aid in meditation and to strengthen the body for the
strenuous mental exercises leading to realization of the true divine
self, and eventually to samadhi, union with the divine" [source].
"[A]s Yoga students [practice] the
physical positions, they would eventually be ready to investigate
the spiritual component which is 'the entire essence of the
subject'" [Richard Hittleman, Yoga Journal, May-June
"Can one reject the spiritual
teachings of yoga but practice the physical movements and positions?
... 'Asanas are a devotional practice ... each asana creates a
certain state of mind ... to bring the seeker into closer contact
with the Higher Self'" [Swami Sivenanda Radha, Hatha Yoga,
"Through the symbol each posture
represents (the locust, the fish, the candle, etc.), it involves a
change of personality and is prescribed by the guru according
to the spiritual needs of his disciple, so that he may more easily
surmount his ignorant condition" [source].
"Practising the postures (Yoga
Sutra 2:46) is the first stage of physical asceticism. Its aim
is to immobilize the body, to bring it under control and refuse
movement, with the only goal of helping concentration. Therefore,
the purpose or performing asanas is not (as often believed in
the West) to confer harmony and health to the body, provide
relaxation, etc., but to be a physical support for concentration" [source].
"[C]ontrol of the vital energy (prana)
by way of breathing, like also asana, is not merely a physical
exercise, but is accompanied by certain psychomental phenomena. ...
all techniques falling under the heading of asana and pranayama as,
for example, the mudras and bandhas [physical positions or symbolic
bodily gestures utilizing pranayama and concentration for physical
or spiritual purposes] of Hathayoga, are psychosomatic exercises.
This point, unfortunately, is little understood by Western
practitioners" [Feuerstein and Miller, quoted in
"Gomukasana (Cow Face Yoga Pose):
Its form is representative of the face of the sacred cow ...
Traditionally, the cow in Indian culture [is] revered as a holy
animal, and represents ... embodiment of the sacred. In the Hindu
tradition, the cow, Nandi, is the vehicle upon which Lord Shiva
rides, and is also a central figure in the life of Krishna, an
incarnation of Vishnu who is the sustainer of the universe"
Salute to the Sun:
"The Sun Salutation is a 20th century
yogic invention of Bhawanrao Pantpritinidhi, the Rajah of Aundh ...
Proponents who use [it] as part of the modern yoga tradition prefer
to perform it at sunrise, which the orthodox consider to be the most
'spiritually favourable' time of the day" [Wikipedia, quoted at:
"[T]he 'salute to the sun' posture,
used at the beginning of most classes, pays homage to the Hindu sun
"[T]he Sun Salutation is a form of
worshipping the Sun God ... the asanas (poses) in the Sun salutation
are to be done in a certain order ... They were created and
developed over a 5,000 year period. The positions were not created
to stretch the muscles or to create relaxation. The unnatural
positions were created to force energy up the spine and ultimately
into the brain for spiritual unification with Atman ... with Hindu
"Regarding the abomination of
saluting the sun and giving reverence to the creation rather than
the Creator (Romans 1:18-25), the prophet Ezekiel addressed this
issue in his own day (Ezekiel 8). The priests ... were ... bowing
down to the sun in the East. ... This was and still is today an
expression of contempt for God and is a direct violation of God's
command in Deuteronomy 4:19" [source].
Pranayama (Breath Control /
"Just as the asanas are not
aimed at enhancing physical fitness, but the immobilization of the
body, neither is the purpose of breath control (pranayama) to
enhance the respiratory flow, but rather to reduce it" [source].
"Pranayama refers to the knowledge
and control of prana, or mystical energy, not merely to the control
of one's physical breath. Prana is believed to be universal divine
energy residing behind the material world. Prana is said to have
five forms, and all energy is though to be a manifestation of it.
... Perfect control of prana makes one God. One can have 'infinite
knowledge, infinite power, now'" [source].
Prana is "the infinite, omnipresent
manifesting power of this universe" [Swami Nikhilananada,
Vivekananda - the Yogas and Other Works].
"The control of this force [Prana] is
what is aimed at by the Yogins by means of Pranayama. He who
conquers this, is not only the conqueror of his own existence on the
physical and mental plane, but the conqueror of the whole world. For
the Prana is the very essence of cosmic life, that subtle principle
which evolved the whole universe into its present form and which is
pushing it towards its ultimate goal. To the Yogi the whole universe
is his body. The matter which composes his body is the same that
evolved the universe. The force which pulsates through his nerves is
not different from the force which vibrates through the universe.
The conquest over the body does, therefore, mean to him the conquest
over the forces of nature" [Simply Vedic Cultural Society, quoted at
"Breath control (Yoga Sutra
2:49-51) means the refusal of breath, following the refusal of
movement by performing the asanas. ... [J]just as
psycho-mental tension affects the rhythm of breath, likewise the
action of stilling the breath can contribute to stilling the
'modification of the mind'. Therefore pranayama is an
important instrument in attaining a perfect state of concentration.
However, Pranayama has a deeper meaning that just
controlling breath. It rather represents the control of prana
flow through the human body, which is the energy that controls any
possible process or movement ... [and] in which any form of physical
and mental activity originates. ... [I]t is believed that
psycho-mental activity can be slowed down and even stopped by
reducing the respiratory inflow of prana" [source].
"It is the Prana that is
manifesting as motion; it is the Prana that is manifesting as
gravitation, as magnetism. It is the Prana that is
manifesting as the actions of the body, as the nerve currents, as
thought force. From thought down to the lowest force, everything is
but the manifestation of Prana. The sum total of all forces
in the universe, mental or physical, when resolved back to their
original state, is called Prana" [Vivekananda, The
Complete Works, p.148, quoted in
"Yoga's breathing techniques may seem
stress-relieving, yet they can be an open door to the psychic realm
- inhaling and exhaling certain 'energies' for the purpose of
relaxation and cleansing" [source].
manipulation of so-called life-force energy, and is part of the ...
'plan of salvation' through yoga. In Paul's letter to the
church at Ephesus, he refers to the enemy of our soul as 'the
prince of the power of the air ...' (Ephesians 2:2). 'Air'
in this instance does not mean the oxygen we breathe. Rather,
Paul is referring to what some call the 'second heaven' or 'psychic
arena'. The first heaven is the atmosphere we can see
(planets, sun, moon and stars). The third heaven is where God
dwells (2 Corinthians 12:2). hence, the 'second heaven' is
that realm in-between, an atmosphere wherein angelic and demonic
forces dwell (Daniel 10:10-13). Dabbling in this arena as if
it were a playground is certainly not what we ... are called to do.
It can be quite dangerous manipulating 'life force energy'.
Those who do so are moving into the realm of psychism, magic, and
witchcraft - where the 'god of this world', as Paul called
him, 'hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the
light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God,
should shine unto them' (2 Corinthians 4:4)" [source].
Mantras / Meditation / Mindfulness
"Swami Brahmananda taught us this
truth: 'When you sit for meditation, try to feel that you are bathed
in the presence of God. You have become pure. Think yourself pure'.
When I was a young boy, I remember reading in a book that one should
repeat to oneself: 'You are pure. You are pure. You are pure.' Sri
Ramakrishna used to say that the wretch who says he is a sinner, a
sinner he becomes. Of course, we all make mistakes. But chant the
name of the Lord and feel that you have become pure; then do not
repeat the mistake" [Swami Prabhavanada, Yoga - True and False].
"By study is meant chanting the name
of the Lord, repeating your mantra. That is the highest study"
[Swami Prabhavanada, Yoga - True and False].
"The Bhagavad Gita speaks of the
correct posture for meditation: 'Motionless, with the body, head,
and neck held erect...' Swami Vivekananda has pointed out this
steadiness of posture comes to one who meditates on the presence of
the all-pervading Existence" [Swami Prabhavanada, Yoga - True and
"[F]ix the mind on some divine form
outside or inside the body - whichever is simplest. If you begin to
think of Him outside, gradually bring Him inside" [Swami Prabhavanada, Yoga - True and False].
"There also exists another
dangerously false idea about yoga. Some teachers have recently been
speaking about meditation, which, of course, is the very core and
central truth of spiritual life. Real meditation is real yoga. But
the kind of meditation to which these teachers refer has no real
basis, but is, more than anything, pure confusion. They point out
meditation to be simple and easy, demanding hardly any sacrifice or
self-restraint. Continue to live as you have been living, they tell
us, it doesn't really matter. Is it any wonder then they have
attracted a large number of followers!" [Swami Prabhavanada, Yoga
- True and False].
"Sense withdrawal, concentration, and
meditative absorption are the mental exercises of yoga. To develop
the desired pure state of consciousness it is necessary to withdraw
from the input of one's senses and to develop one's powers of
concentration. To achieve this one might practice concentrating on a
sound (e.g. one's own chanting of a mantra, such as the name of a
Hindu god or the sacred syllable om, which Patanjali says is
the voice of God [1:27]), on an image (e.g., the tip of one's nose
or a symbolic religious image known as a mandala), or on one's own
breathing. The purpose, however, is to so focus on an object that
the object itself disappears and a state of pure (i.e., thoughtless)
consciousness is attained. Through these mental exercises and
techniques, meditative absorption is achieved, where the
practitioner begins to lose the distinction between subject and
object (i.e., self and not-self), to experience the cosmic
consciousness (i.e., the sense that one's own mind is merging into a
larger, Universal Mind), and to feel one with the Universe or God"
"Very much a part of yoga is the
chanting of 'Om', a breathing sound that instructors often ask their
students to use to quiet them down, focus their energies, and help
'get themselves centered'. Yet they are seldom told that 'Om'
(pronounced 'Aauum') is believed by the yogis in the East to be the
basic sound of the universe underlying all 'Being' and that chanting
it is designed to unite one with the 'universal deity' ... that
chanting 'Om' is a form of surrender to the basic force pervading
the universe" [Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ,
"'The purpose of chanting is only to
soften the palate and to open up the channels to the body', said one
instructor, although she didn't indicate how this 'opening up'
process was expected to take place, nor why her students would need
to 'soften their palates' when, presumably, they were not involved
in voice lessons. 'Open the channels to the body' for what?
Obviously not for food and drink, so it must mean for something
non-physical - something 'spiritual'."
[Jacintha Jones, 'Yoga,
Religion Work Hand in Hand', Naples (Florida) Daily News,
23:08:2003, quoted in Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ,
"Christian meditation ... involves an
active rather than a passive mental state. Meditation according to
the Bible is filled with content, such as the works, Word, and
attributes of God (see e.g., Psalm 1:2; 77:12; 119:15,27,148;
145:5). It never creates a mental void, into which spiritual forces
that are not of God can rush - as does yoga. The two forms of
meditation could not be more different, seeking, as they do, such
radically different conceptions of union with such radically
different conceptions of God" [source].
Difficulties and Dangers of Yoga
for comments, quotations, and articles examining some of the harmful
aspects of practising yoga.
"'Christian yoga' is an oxymoron.
Yoga is rooted in Hinduism and cannot be separated from it. ...
There's nothing wrong with stretching and calming down one's
breathing. But yoga isn't really about that; it's aimed at
transforming human consciousness to experience the Hindu god"
"When investigating a Christian yoga
class, be on the lookout for: (1) Sanskrit Language - Many words
commonly used in yoga pay homage to Hindu deities; (2) Metaphysical
Jargon - Phrases such as 'breathing in positive energy and breathing
out negative energy', 'focusing on the third eye', and 'getting in
touch with the divinity within you' have New Age implications; (3)
Projection - Beware being told to empty your mind or to step outside
your body; (4) Feelings of Discomfort - Pay attention to those
feelings. Even if you can't pinpoint why you're uncomfortable, this
may be the Holy Spirit's way of letting you know the class isn't for
"A Christian trying to adapt these
practices will likely disrupt their own Christian beliefs" [Sannyasin
Arumugaswami, Managing Editor of Hinduism Today, quoted at:
"Is Yoga a religion that denies Jesus
Christ? Yes. Just as Christianity denies the Hindu Maha Devas such
as Siva, Vishnu, Durga and Krishna, to name a few, Hinduism and its
many Yogas have nothing to do with God and Jesus (though we do
respect that others believe in this way). As Hindus who live the
Yogic lifestyle, we appreciate when others understand that all of
Yoga is all about the Hindu religion. Modern so-called 'yoga' is
dishonest to Hindus and to all non-Hindus such as the Christians"
Yoga instructor at the Classical Yoga Hindu Academy, quoted at:
"Our research has
shown a significant link between Pilates and yoga. In fact,
according to the Pilates Method Alliance, the founder, Joseph
Pilates, based his exercise program on 'over 20 years of self-study
and apprenticeship in yoga, Zen and ancient Greek and Roman physical
regimens.' Because of this Yoga/Hindu connection to Pilates,
we cannot recommend this particular exercise program to Christians"
"Whenever you see the words prana
(Hinduism), chi (Chinese, Tai Chi), ki (Japanese,
martial arts), or mana (Hawaiian Huna religion), they are all
referring to the same thing. Like yoga, Tai Chi and
traditional martial arts involve similar manipulation of life force
energy, thus opening the door to deceptive spiritual influences. One
sees falsehood even in the symbolism of Tai Chi and yin-yang. In its
simplest sense, yin-yang illustrates the belief that 'there's a
little good in evil and a little evil in good.' This is false
and leads to confusion, but 'God is not the author of confusion' (1
Corinthians 14:33) and 'Every good gift and every perfect
gift ... cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no
variableness, neither shadow of turning' (James 1:17)" [source].
"A few years ago a chiropractor
recommended that I attend TM classes for relaxation. At the first
class the teacher said each student would be required to bring fruit
and flowers and lay them in front of a large photo of the Maharishi
each week. ... at which point I politely told him I was interested
in learning relaxation techniques, but I could not in good
conscience offer fruit and flowers before the photo of the
Maharishi. The teacher grew visibly angry and his eyes widened as he
stared hard at me. I knew right then another spirit was involved in
this and I left, never to return"
The Bigger Picture
"The term 'New Age' is an informal
term derived from astrology, which indicates that this earth, is not
the cosmos, is on the verge of an evolutionary transition from the
Piscean Age of rationality to the Aquarian Age of spirituality,
bliss, and harmony of all things" [source].
"Despite its popularity, the New Age
concept is impossible to fit into a tidy package simply because it
is an umbrella term used to group wide and varied practices under
one simple heading. It is a fusion of differing systems of beliefs
with no central organization, no common set of beliefs, and no
absolute authority. Because New Agers combine elements that appeal
to them from a variety of sources, the path each one follows is both
subjective and highly individualistic. Different New Age groups will
give prominence to different aspects of belief" [source].
"This secular, multi-culti,
multi-religious fusion usually rejects traditional religious
doctrine and dogman, but draws inspiration from Eastern religions
such as Hinduism and Buddhism, plus other ancient religious
traditions such as native American spirituality. ... The vast
majority of New Age beliefs and practices are modern (i.e. Western)
re-interpretations of ancient teachings and practices" [source].
Spirituality: Gaia and Mother Earth
"Because everything is
part of God, New Agers usually show a great respect for the
environment and are usually interested in ecological issues of all
kinds. In fact, some believe that the Earth is a living organism
called Gaia... a goddess with maternal (thus feminine) attributes.
In Greek mythology, Gaia was the primal Greek Mother Goddess;
creator and giver of birth to the Earth and all the Universe" [source].
"The Gaia hypothesis was
eagerly accepted by the emerging new age movement in the 1970s as it
combines neatly with eastern mysticism and neopagan theology, but
'science' was needed to convince biologists. For these people, Gaia
was made palatable by Lovelock's Daisyworld model, a mathematical
and scientific theory designed to refute the criticisms of
Darwinism. Just as evolution eliminates the need for a divine
creator, the Daisyworld model provided a theory of evolving life on
earth that incorporates natural selection with a sentient lifeforce.
It eliminates a personal yet separate God, and makes humans a part
of the divine spirit that is Gaia" [source].
"The fate of mankind, as
well as of religion, depends upon the emergence of a new faith in
the future. Armed with such a faith, we might find it possible to
resanctify the earth" [Al Gore, Earth in the Balance, quoted
"The earth is literally
our mother, not only because we depend on her for nurture and
shelter but even more because the human species has been shaped by
her in the womb of evolution... Our salvation depends upon our
ability to create a religion of nature"
[Rene Dubos, board member,
Planetary Citizens, quoted at:
"Nature is my god. To
me, nature is sacred; trees are my temples and forests are my
cathedrals" [Mikhail Gorbachev, Green Cross International, quoted
"[T]he basic premise
behind many of these green transformation groups is that 'modern
humans' [have] rebelled and become separated from Nature, and we
must return and once again become part of the 'great commonwealth of
Gaia' (to use [James] Lovelock's words). To many promoting the green
agenda this is their religion. It is not about science or
environmental protection - it is about implementing their form of
New Age religion" [source].
"Little by little a
planetary prayer book is thus being composed by an increasingly
united humanity seeking its oneness. Once again, but this time on a
universal scale, humankind is seeking no less than its reunion with
'divine', its transcendence into higher forms of life. Hindus call
our earth Brahma, or God, for they ... see no difference between our
earth and the divine. This ancient simple truth is slowly dawning
again upon humanity, as we are about to enter our cosmic age and
become what we were always meant to be: the planet of god" [Robert
Muller, former UN Assistant Secretary General and Chancellor of the
UN University for Peace, quoted at
"The feminist movement
has also warmly embraced the concept of a Gaia Goddess. For many of
these proponents, an integral part of Goddess worship is its
prevalent theme of anti-masculine, anti-male statements. In this
philosophical world-view, since Goddess worship is good, then by
necessity, any use of masculine terminology in reference to God or
any prominence of men in culture or society is generally
"The Earth Charter
stresses that man is his own saviour. By saving 'Mother Earth' we
will once again return to an idyllic Garden of Eden and redeem our
tarnished souls. But instead of worshipping the true Creator, the
Global Green Agenda seeks to plunge us headlong into an
earth-worship new world religion. They are only waiting for 'the
right crisis' after which they surmise that humanity will gladly
sell their souls for the kind of world that the Earth Charter
"Gaians claim that 'we
are part of Nature and Nature is part of us, therefore God is part
of us, and God is everywhere, and everything is God'. In reality
Gaia is actually a revival of the 'Earth-goddess' found in many
ancient pagan religions. The current Gaia Cult is a cunning mixture
of science, paganism, eastern mysticism, wicca and feminism. While
researching this subject I have been astounded by how many prominent
environmental leaders, politicians, scientists, and religious
leaders profess a literal belief in Gaia. Gaians appear to have
infiltrated every level of power at the United Nations and risen to
prominent positions in many Governments. I strongly believe that
they are the most dangerous and devious cult on the face of the
"Gaia worship is at the
very heart of the Global Green Agenda. Sustainable Development,
Agenda 21, the Earth Charter, and the Global Warming theory are all
part of the Gaians' mission to save 'Mother Earth' from her human
infestation. Gaians have succeeded in uniting the environmental
movement, the new age movement, Eastern religions, the United
Nations and even the leaders of many Christian denominations behind
this vile new form of paganism" [source].
For more on Ecology
and Environmentalism see
For more on the
replacement of Patriarchy (Father God) with Matriarchy (Mother
Earth/Gaia) see the sections on Feminism
here for comments,
quotations, and articles on this topic.
"A consideration of the [eight] limbs
quickly reveals that yoga is a demanding autosoteric (salvation
based on self-effort) system"
"Who needs a Savior God if we
ourselves are 'saturated with the divine' rather than saturated with
sin? A radically different diagnosis of the human problem (ignorance
rather than sin) results in a radically different solution
(embracing ourselves rather than embracing a transcendent God and
His gift of salvation)" [source].
"In contrast to the relaxation
exercises of yoga, which are specifically designed to empty the
mind, the desire of the true God, Creator of the universe, is to
bring us into a willing, understanding, and conscious relationship
with Himself - a relationship based not upon mystical states of mind
but upon truth and love. Speaking through His prophet Jeremiah, God
declared: 'But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he
understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise
lovingkindness, judgement, and righteousness, in the earth: for in
these things I delight' (Jeremiah 9:24). Notice that
'understanding' is placed first and is the foundation of 'knowing'"
[Dave Hunt, Yoga and the Body of Christ, p.36].
"Could it be that liberation is
through a person and not a system? Jesus also had something to say
about yoking, but it is not a union with an impersonal force, but a
resting in Christ through trust in Him as the Son of God (Matthew
11:28-30). We can lay our burdens on Christ because of what He has
done on the cross, instead of endlessly labouring on yoga path that
leads only to more bondage" [source].
unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in
heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
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