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  • The Case Against Yoga: Sedlock Vs. Baird — Christians Practicing Yoga
    it brought the life that it brought to the earth and they were told to do that right before they did their sun salutation exercises she says Those looked like religious teachings to her so she opted to keep her son out of the classes The more Eady reads about the Jois Foundation and its founders beliefs in the spiritual benefits of Ashtanga yoga the more she s convinced that the poses and meditation can t be separated from their Hindu roots This description does not categorize the same kind of instruction that I ve seen Joanne and B K give at all I have a feeling that if Eady had walked into one of Joanne s classes this lawsuit wouldn t be happening And while I understand that without the sun we would not be alive I m not sure that I want to thank it I am thankful that it exists but that s a bit different Thus before I continue with my discussion here I need to make clear that I don t know what went on in the yoga classes under scrutiny I do know that the yoga in schools training I ve seen is beautiful physical and psychological work Unfortunately the people against yoga in schools are Christians and the press around the case makes it seem that all Christians are against yoga This is not true I was at the Yoga in Schools training because I m writing a book profiling Christians who practice yoga Joanne Spence is the subject of one of the chapters Her work in schools is helping students get in touch with their bodies which is one of the most sacred relationships that they have The case of Sedlock v Baird hinges on a variation of a question I ve been thinking about a lot as a Christian a yoga instructor and a writer Can yoga be taught apart from its Hindu roots Yes In her yoga classes in the schools Joanne never mentions God Nor does she mention any other deity or form of worship Joanne s classes focus on the breath If you can breathe she says you can do yoga Think about it Right now Stop and breathe Do nothing else Just breathe for ten breaths See if you can make your exhale longer than your inhale Seriously Stop and breathe Then come back Do it That was yoga How do you feel Honestly I had a hard time stopping writing Then I felt anxious I felt bad because I wasn t doing anything productive my exhale was only a little bit longer than my inhale my writing sucks and I have all that judgment inside me I live with that critic hanging out just below the surface Yoga lets me know it and helps me get rid of it There s really nothing mysterious to it yoga is a mind body centering tool Yoga is a methodology not a theology says DeAnna Smothers of Yahweh Yoga

    Original URL path: http://www.christianspracticingyoga.com/christianity-and-yoga-blog/2015/5/23/sedlock-vs-baird-the-case-against-yoga-in-schools (2016-04-26)
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  • A Call to Christian Embodiment — Christians Practicing Yoga
    North America for popular capitalistic consumption and adaptation To my knowledge many if not most practitioners teachers and types of yoga are content to keep the focus and scope in the classroom the studio and on the individual to the exclusion of the larger social political earth bodies as integral dimensions of their practice and teaching But all is not lost especially for Christianity As one Christian theologian put it the end of all God s work is and I say continues to be embodiment All sources of divine revelation and most importantly Jesus have disclosed that radical embodiment is God s nature work and will in and for all areas and levels of life There is one God and Father of all who is above all through all and in all Eph 4 6 Jesus once said What God has joined together let no one put asunder Matt 19 6 God will not long stand for creatures attempts to dis embody what God intends to be embodied This good news of Christianity s embodied nature is beginning to be reclaimed proclaimed celebrated practiced and promoted by some including Christians who practice yoga among others It s very good news that in some Christian circles the individual human body with help from the Holy Spirit and the human spirits who inhabit it is making a comeback and slowly elbowing its way into its rightful place as a more accepted valued integrated integral and equal part of Christian spirituality and practice So the great work of reclaiming the body and our thoroughly embodied holistic Christian tradition and spiritual practices has begun but as the song says we ve only just begun There s still a lot more inward outward and communal work to be done before all parts of our radically embodied Christian tradition are fully integrated and included into one seamless unified spiritual practice I refer to the larger bodily system and systems of life where God also dwells and to which our individual bodies and personal prayer practices are intricately and inextricably connected The social political body the earth body and the corporate body which includes the Church are still treated as separate dis embodied members of the One Body of Life in which the Divine Life is embodied and experienced While many practitioners and advocates of a more embodied Christian spirituality are not opposed and even sympathetic to including the larger socio political earth bodies and systems in the practice the fact remains there is little effort being given to do so in any cohesive practical well integrated manner The Christian Yoga Teacher Training courses and curricula I ve seen thus far do not do it editor s note pre 2008 Nor do most body mind spirit retreats workshops classes etc Discussions about how to expand and integrate the larger bodily systems into a much more whole unified less individualistic and dis embodied spiritual practice usually gets reduced to individual acts of mercy charity and direct social services

    Original URL path: http://www.christianspracticingyoga.com/christianity-and-yoga-blog/2015/5/23/a-call-to-christian-embodiment (2016-04-26)
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