Saturday, September 13, 2008

Yoga—What’s Wrong With That?

I know a number of genuine Christians who practice yoga. They see no problem with it, and in fact, some think I’m weird for making a big deal about it. Believe me. The last thing I want to do is be like the legalistic Pharisees in the Church who burden Christians with manmade commandments, like “Thou shall not drink, dance or go to the movies.” Jesus hates manmade rules. I always want to chose grace over sinful legalism. Christians are free in Christ. And, in fact, an idol is nothing. But even in the context of those often quoted words of Paul, he writes: "Consider the people of Israel: Do not those who eat the sacrifices participate in the altar? Do I mean then that a sacrifice offered to an idol is anything, or that an idol is anything? No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons." (1 Cor. 10:18-20)

I sincerely believe that those who practice yoga are “participating” with demons.

Why would I make such an outlandish claim? Living more than eleven years in Nepal among demon worshippers (i.e. Hindus) has caused me to make this claim. Think what happens in yoga. I would wager that everyone who regularly participates in yoga, have heard the “Om” chant. It is a regular part of yoga. Am I right? Would anyone disagree with such an obviously true statement? I doubt it.

Om is by far the most “holy” word\sound in Hinduism. It always accompanies their worship practices. “Om is the most important symbol in Hinduism, it occurs in every prayer and invocation to most deities begins with it. As the symbol of piety, Om is often found at the head of letters, pendants, enshrined in every Hindu temple and family shrines. This symbol is actually a sacred syllable representing the Brahman or the Absolute -the source of all existence.” (1)

I can testify to the above claim, that it is true here in Nepal: There is nothing more sacred to Hindus than Om. Now, you should realize that the devil rarely hides his face in Hinduism. And so on the most “holy” days in Hindu religion is when the most demonic things take places—things I have witnessed personally, such as: Animal sacrifices made, where people wear masks and dance for hours barefoot in the blood of the sacrifices in a trance or possession by demons. Also on these most sacred occasions is when the Hindu priests drink the blood of the animals sacrificed and then chant Om afterwards, asking their demons for peace. These are the type of thing that happen at the MOST HOLY events in Hinduism. What then of their most holy word: Om? I believe it to be Satan’s highest praise. When the Hindu priests drink the warm blood of their sacrifices, they commune with their demons and praise their demon-gods with the Om chant. OM is the equivalent of the devil’s praise—it is Satan’s I AM.

So what about the Christian sitting in a yoga room as people chant Om, asking for peace (which is exactly what they do here in Nepal; they chant Om asking their gods for peace.)? Often those involved in yoga speak of the great peace and tranquility they receive through yoga. But no wonder. Demons perform miracles (2 Thessalonians 2:9; Revelation 13:13-15; 16:13-14; 19:20). Why wouldn't demons give a sense of peace to a room full of people asking them for peace, using the “holiest” word for exclaiming Satan’s praise? Om is not only the most important word in Hinduism. “Om is an integral part of the philosophies, rituals, meditations and chants in Jainism, Sikhism and Buddhism. It has the same meaning and ramifications as in Yoga.” (2)

For instance, “Tibetan Buddhists believe that saying the mantra (prayer), ‘Om Mani Padme Hum’, out loud or silently to oneself, invokes the powerful benevolent attention and blessings of Chenrezig, the embodiment of compassion. All the teachings of the Buddha are contained in this mantra: Om Mani Padme Hum.” (3)

The point is that this very chant—OM—is universally recognized, in several world religions (demonic religions!) as having great significance. For some reason, the devil loves this word; he loves the sound of it. Hindus believe that the sound “Om” is what created the world. This is very interesting. We Christians know that God ‘spoke’ and created everything by the Word. It is as if Satan is taking credit for all creation through the Om chant—as if he were the creator of the world. So any of you Christians out there who wish to dabble with yoga, realize what spirits are giving you the tranquility you feel. Realize you are sitting there and hearing Satan’s highest praise sung. Realize that the whole room is asking him and his demon cohorts for peace, and the whole room, in one voice and in one word—Om—are giving Satan the praise for all creation.



In fact, since you desire to delve into Hinduism (since yoga is completely Hindu, even a dictionary will tell you that!) then why not, while you meditate, think of the words of one of Hinduism’s most important deities, Krishna:


Those who worship Me, giving up all their activities unto Me and being devoted to Me without deviation, engaged in devotional service and always meditating upon Me, having fixed their minds upon Me….If you are not able to fix your mind steadily on Me, then do seek to reach Me by the Yoga of constant practice. (4)

Reflect on this Wikipedia article about Om, and as you do, replace the Hindu’s chief word for God (Brahma) with who Brahma actually represents: Satan: "The goal, which all Vedas declare, which all austerities aim at, and which humans desire when they live a life of continence, I will tell you briefly it is OM". "The one syllable [OM] is indeed Brahman. This one syllable is the highest. Whosoever knows this one syllable obtains all that he desires. "This is the best support; this is the highest support. Whosoever knows this support is adored in the world of Brahma…. Chanting, that is, the syllable Om, is the best of all essences, the highest, deserving the highest place….God’s voice is OM.” (5)

All Christians reading this, do as you like. In fact, do all things to the glory of God. If you can do yoga for God’s glory, go for it. I cannot, so perhaps my faith is weak, or, what seems much more likely in the case of yoga, you are exercising a lack of discernment.

“And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15)

Triston


Sources Cited:
1. http://hinduism.about.com/library/weekly/aa121400a.htm
2. http://www.mandalayoga.net/index-newsletter-en-mantra_om.html
3. http://www.dharma-haven.org/tibetan/meaning-of-om-mani-padme-hung.htm
4. http://innervoice.sulekha.com/blog/post/2008/02/bhagvad-gita-chapter-12-summary-the-yoga-of-devotion.htm
5. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Om

30 comments:

lorenzothellama said...

What a load of codswallop!

Mind you, animal sacrificing etc. sounds a bit like the Old Testament.

Litl-Luther said...

Hi Renzo,

Codswallop? That's the first time I've heard that word. Thank you! I think I will use it sometime.

PS: I know you and Susan practice yoga. Please don't take anything I said personal. Believe me, I have a lot of Christian friends back in the States who do think everything I wrote in this post is codswallop. But for some reason, every Christian I know who live in Nepal agree completely with me. Interesting.

lorenzothellama said...

Susan says that you reckon that in Nepal yoga is full of demon worship. Can't say I have come across it here.

I have just spent a delightful week with the Buddhists on Holy Island, Scotland. The Island is Holy because of Saint Molaise, a
6th century saint who lived in a cave on the island. You can google all about him.

All the animals are completely wild but they like to hang around the centre because the aura given off by the Buddhists is so gentle, kind and compassionate. You can read about it in my latest posting.

I attended Chenrezi most evenings. Chenrezi is pure love and compassion and you are supposed to visualize him while the service is going on. You can visualise anything you want and Chrisians tend to visualise a dove for the Holy Spirit, or their idea of Christ or maybe an angel. Afterall, Christ and the Holy Spirit are pure compassion. I don't expect you to agree with me here, but afterall Jesus did say 'there are many rooms in my Father's house' and I am sure there is a room for the very holy Buddhists.

Codswallop is a good word. It is old English. Shakespear used to use it. It's one of those words that express exactly what you think and needs no explanation!

Litl-Luther said...
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Litl-Luther said...

Lorenzo,
Actually, your comments here give more evidence why yoga isn't for Christians.

There are plenty of "good" people out there. Often times, these non-Christian people are better parents; better husbands, better wives. They are honest businessmen. They do good things in their communities, etc. My Dad worked for several Jewish families and a few in particular are truly wonderful people. My dad said to me once "I'm sure many Jewish people, Buddhist people and people of other religions are just as good a people as we are. Why wouldn't God let them in Heaven too?"

It is a reasonable question and it deserves a reasoned response.

Our best works and best people still come nowhere close to measuring up to God's standards. Jesus set the standard "Be perfect just as your Father in Heaven is perfect." (Matt. 5:48) Who could measure up to that standard? No one in this world is THAT good. But Jesus is God, and Jesus is as perfect as God, and thus we cling to Him, for He is that Good.

Here is my reasoned response to your and to my Dad’s question of long ago: If good people could get to heaven without Jesus, then they do not need Jesus’ sacrifice to make them acceptable to God. If they could get to Heaven without Jesus, the implication is that Jesus died for nothing.

If a good Buddhist, good Hindu, good Atheist, etc. can get to heaven without Jesus, then Jesus wasted His time dying. That is exactly what Paul was getting at in Galatians 2:21: "If righteousness could come through the Law, Christ died for nothing." Translation: “If we could become acceptable in God's sight through the good things we do, Jesus died in vain.”

So while I will be the first to admit that there are several Atheists, Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, etc who are good people--often better people than many Christians—nevertheless, not a single one of these people have a shred of hope of entering Heaven without Jesus Christ because they simply are not good enough. Everyone has sinned. Not a single sin will enter God's presence. Only the sinless will enter His presence. Jesus takes all our sins (past, present and future) away when we put our faith solely in Him, and Jesus gives us His own righteousness—His perfection. That's the only hope for this world: Jesus Christ.

Regarding your Chenrezi. Jesus warned: "For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand." (Matt. 24:23) Lorenzo, don't you realize the Bible tells us "Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light." (2 Cor. 11:14) ??

That is EXACTLY who Chenrezi is--Satan or one of Satan's demons, masquerading as an angel of light to deceive you. And you are being deceived by him because you are looking for truth, compassion and so on from a source other than Jesus. I say this as lovingly as I know how: Be forewarned. You are listening to demons--and EVERY Christian will agree with me on this point. I tell you this because I care about you, Lorenzo, and your soul. Chenrezi is a demon masquerading as an angel of light.

Love,
Triston

lorenzothellama said...

Chenrezi is not a being, it is just pure love and compassion. I have answered some of your comments over at Susan's.

Thanks for your care Luther. It is appreciated. I do think you are mixing Buddhism up with yoga. The two don't necessarily go together. Most Buddhists DON'T do yoga.

I spent a lot of time on the Island meditating and we didn't do any yoga. You can't have read my posting. (I don't think you will be contaminated if you do read it!).

Since coming home I have felt a true peace that I have not felt for many years. I feel happy, spiritual and loving. I've not even snapped at anyone which is good for me!

I think we know in our hearts what is good.

I'll go back to Susan's later as I have an appointment right now and I don't want to be late.

Cheers my old fruitcake!

Litl-Luther said...

Hey Lorenzo,

I haven't read your post yet, and no, I don't believe it will contaminate me.

On 9 Sept. Susan wrote me an email saying, "Lorenzo is off doing yoga with her daughter for a week". That's where the confusion came in. I assumed, since this is what Susan told me, that your week away was a yoga retreat.

Triston

Litl-Luther said...

I've read your post now, Lorenzo. Several very nice pictures there....But what I find most interesting is that it was your own yoga instructor who did all the teaching during this week of meditating upon a demon called Chenrezi. Very interesting indeed!

lorenzothellama said...

Thank you for your visit and your comments.

If Susan confused you it was because I confused her. I assumed it was a yoga and meditation retreat but hadn't really read the course description. I don't know why you find it interesting that Sarah, my teacher, 'took' me to Holy Island. Sarah has been teaching there for years now. I first heard of Holy Island through her and I thought it sounded wonderful, which it is!

I certainly can't afford to go there very often and Sarah teaches there about four times a year. You can find their web site by googling Holy Island Scotland, and also you can google St Molaise. He sounds quite an interesting old man.

Yoga isn't a religion. Some people just use it for the exercise which is certainly brilliant, but other people go further into it and meditate and have a yoga diet. I have never heard of sacrifices. Yoga is a non-harm way of life. No killing or eating meat. It doesn't quite tie in with your description. Are you sure you haven't mistaken this somewhere along the line.

Litl-Luther said...

Hi Lorenzo,

I appreciate how kind you have been in response, though of course I understand you disagree with me.

Yoga is incorporated in much Hindu worship here in Nepal, though in the West not as much. Yoga comes out of Hindu worship; that is its origin. Your explanation of your time in Scotland visualizing Chenrezi is exactly the sort of thing I'm warning Christians to avoid. If a spirit, or whatever you want to call him, her or it, does not point you to Jesus Christ at Lord, you can be sure it is not an angel of God, and if it is not an angel of God, there is nothing left for it to be than a demon. Whatever joy, love, compassion, etc. you feel in its presence is inconsequential. Demons perform miracles; they come in the appearance of good angels to deceive. There is a war going on in the spiritual realm for the souls of people, and Chenrezi is just another one of Satan's tactics.

lorenzothellama said...

Perhaps I am just a bit inarticulate Luther. I have never visualised Chenrezi. I don't worship him. He is not a person. He is a name for a feeling.

I could call the same feeling 'badger' or 'scaredy' or anything you like. Buddhists and Hindis may believe there is a person called Chenrezi, but I don't.

I really do appreciate your concern for me and if I snap at you on Susan's blog then it's because of frustration, but I do feel you are getting in the regions on judging here. None of us are able to judge another's motives or reasons.

We can pray about it, but don't you think that some 'answers' to prayer are just the empty echo of our own thoughts and desires?

Martin Stickland said...

Thanks for the tip off my friend and the support, I am off to Susan's blog now to see what dirt is being dished!

Anonymous said...

I have never attended a yoga class where any chanting went on. The whole series I did attend didn't even teach any foreign words for the poses used.
The yoga stretches and positions can be used therapeutically for the body and as relaxation exercises without any spiritual context.

iffy said...

As a Christian, I have had difficulty with some of the "words" used in the yoga class that I have attended. The class is held at the YMCA. (Young Men's Christian Association). The missions statement of the YMCA is..."To put Christian principles into pracitce through programs that build healthy spirit, mind, and body for all." There are other Christian members of the class and we have had a discussion about the words used for the poses and the "chant" at the end using "om". I have not attended a class since the instrutor was talked to by the fitness director asking her to stop using the chant at the end. I will pass some of the info. that you have brought up on the blog.
Thank you for the insite and conformation not to attend.
iffy in NC

love said...

Thank you for this wonderful reminder for me as a Christian. I have practiced the 'physical' discipline of yoga for several years, except falling off the proverbial wagon this past year. I loved my yoga for oh, about 5-6 years, maybe a little more, and felt that I was keeping the practice completely separate from my spiritual life, not bowing at the end (though quitely; not condemning or speaking out), and not repeating Namaste back to the leader and the rest of the group, since I knew what that meant. I believe our particular teachers (it's at a health club) are trying to just teach the physical element, but someone in corporate (it's a global chain) decided to have them lead you in some visualization and what-not. I began to see, though they were unaware, that Satan was attempting to bring something 'benign' to a group of willing participants. I must be wise, and wary. Thank you for encouraging me in that direction. The entire purpose of Satan and his demons are to bring false truths, false practices into the lives of those he is bargaining for. If he cannot get a soul, he seeks to confuse the person at least, so he/she will be less blessed and less influential on the earth. God bless you and yours.

Susan Isaacs said...

I'm a Christian and I practice yoga. I avoid classes that are too spiritual. I stick to the ones where the teacher focuses on the exercise. If they ever say Om, I say, "Lord." I think of it as the "food sacrificed to idols." The plus side is, I've never been in an exercise space with so many people hungry for God. "The fields are white with harvest!" Rather than run away from them, Jesus has given me a love for those people: my teachers, my fellow practitioners. it's opened a great door. And, yoga has given me a chance to slow down, focus on my breath, rather then get caught up in the future or the past, and practice the presence of Jesus Christ.

Litl-Luther said...

Hi Susan Issacs,

I can believe that God would use you in such a way. I remember a good Christian friend once told me that God used the movie "Ghost" to bring him to Christ. It seemed odd, yet that was his testimony. God will use anything. So I say to you "Great!" I pray the Lord Jesus will use you to lead people in the yoga setting to faith in Him.

ktcool said...

I just read this since I am new to your blog. All I have to say is "AMEN Brother". As someone who have practiced yoga, meditation and other practices while in the middle of break of faith from God I agree. Cultural misappropriation abounds in the name "diversity" and "tolerance". A toad is still a toad and to call it an form of frog is a lie. Facts are facts. If a culture's faith practices demonic processes then it is not Christian. If someone REALLY wants to benefit from the physical wellness aspect of yoga try stretching while memorizing bible verses. I did that for years when I was a Christian youth. It worked then and it works now. Keep up the good work!
Katie

Litl-Luther said...

Thanks Katie! You are an encouragement.

Litl-Luther said...
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beowulf2k8 said...

I don't support or practice Yoga and certainly don't believe that Christians should be dabbling in Pagan chanting. I do find it ironic, however, that you said on "No Cross, No Crown" that you think I sound like a nut. Calvinism is Satan's highest praise, for it elevates him above God since it makes God the author of evil thus making God worse than Satan. This "OM" sound may be given all kinds of Pagan meanings by Pagans but the reason the sound is calming is because the sound is calming, not because it conjures demons or something like that. (The recitation of the Westminster Confession, however may conjure demons.) If someone says "OM" with no conscience of an idol then it is pure, but he who says "OM" thinking of it as belonging to an idol is sinning. This follows Paul's argument concerning meat offered to idols.

Litl-Luther said...

beowulf2k8 wrote: "The recitation of the Westminster Confession, however may conjure demons."

Above is a good example of why I say you sound like a nut. Let me recite some of the Westminster Confession to you. Tell me what is wrong with this? It glorifies God:

"There is but one only living and true God, who is infinite in being and perfection, a most pure spirit, invisible, without body, parts, or passions, immutable, immense, eternal, incomprehensible, almighty, most wise, most holy, most free, most absolute, working all things
according to the counsel of his own immutable and most righteous will, for his won glory, most
loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering, abundant in goodness and truth, forgiving iniquity,
transgression, and sin; the rewarder of them that diligently seek him...2. God hath all life, glory, goodness, blessedness, in and of himself; and is alone in and unto himself all-sufficient, not standing in need of any creatures which he hath made, nor deriving any glory from them, but only manifesting his own glory in, by, unto, and upon them; he is the alone foundation of all being, of whom, through whom, and to whom, are all things...

One other thing: In one of your posts you say that Paul "claimed" to be one of Jesus Apostles. So do you deny that Paul's letters in the Bible are God's Word???

beowulf2k8 said...

"It glorifies God:" no it doesn't. There are parts that talk about God being wonderful and such, but the whole point of the thing is to make God out to be the author of evil, which is not glorifying him.

"One other thing: In one of your posts you say that Paul "claimed" to be one of Jesus Apostles. So do you deny that Paul's letters in the Bible are God's Word???"Let me answer like this: We always read PAul's letters as a modern person who assumed from the beginning that everything we are going to read in them is true and inerrant and is God's Word. What would happen, if for once, we were to read one of Paul's letters as if we were men of the first century whose minds were not yet so made up by thousands of years of tradition?

You should try this with the book of Galatians, but first you must know some background.

Why did Paul write Galatians? Because the Galatians (Galatia is a region in Asia) were doubting Paul's apostleship. Therefore he wrote to them to prove himself to be an apostle. He begins with a thesis: "Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ"--The rest of what he says, especially in chapters 1 and 2, is to prove that thesis.

Nevertheless, even though Paul writes them a letter specifically to prove his apostleship is legit, Galatia, along with all Asia, eventually rejected Paul as a false apostle, as he complains to Timothy in 2nd Timothy 1:15 "This you know, that all those in Asia have turned away from me,"--the question is WHY? Why were the Galatians not convinced by the Galatian letter? This is the question nobody ever thinks to ask. Most people don't even notice Paul's statement that all Asia (Asia is Asia minor) gave him the boot, or if they do, they just ignore what this means. It means that Lystra and Derbe (part of Galatia) along with the rest of Galatia (an entire region, not just one city) and Colosse and Laodicea (all these are in Asia minor) and EPHESUS, and many others, all finally rejected Paul. Many of these churches had been established by Paul, but before his death, they all rejected him. They didn't reject CHRIST, they rejected PAUL. And to one of these churches, Jesus instructs John to write in Revelation 2:2 "I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:"

How did all this happen? How were all the churches in Asia minor convinced that Paul was a liar, and how was John convinced along with them? Well, please notice Paul's arguments in favor of his apostleship in Galatians 1-2. His argument is "I am independent of the 12. The top 3 of the 12, Peter, James, and John only seem to be something, and whatever they are doesn't matter to me. They're all Judaizers, and yet accept my call to preach to the Gentiles. And, oh yeah, Peter's a hypocrite and I put the smack down on him in a far away city that has nothing to do with you and the only possible reason I have for mentioning this alleged incident (which never really happened) is that I need to make all the real apostles look bad to convince you that I am an apostle and a better one that all of them. After all, they only walked faithfully with Jesus all throughout his earthly ministry, but I saw him on a road in a drug induced hallucination! Worship me!" If you were to read Galatians without your superstitious brainwashing into Paul worship, you would immediately condemn this man as a false apostle and liar, and even as an antichrist.

Litl-Luther said...
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Litl-Luther said...

Thank you, beowulf2k8, for proving my accusation that you are indeed a nut! So now you think you can decipher which books of the Bible are canonical and which are not? You must be wiser than all of church history put together which have attested that Paul's writings are the Word of God. Wow! You are even wiser than the Apostle Peter, who himself attests that beloved Paul's letters are "Scripture" (2Peter 3:14-16)! Far from Paul seeking worship for himself; it seems, rather, that you are seeking beowulf worship. I've heard enough from you to know now which spirit you are speaking from, you servant of the devil. Don't bother writing here again.

beowulf2k8 said...

I'm sure Peter really wrote that all Paul's epistles are Scripture without defending himself against Paul's lying attack on him in Galatians! And why is it that Peter would call Paul's writings Scripture in the very passage where he is warning against Paul's writings? Someone clearly changed what Peter said to give it a positive spin and make room for the old apostles of the heretics in the canon.

Litl-Luther said...

So basically, in your opinion, beowulf2k8, the whole Bible is untrustworthy and we need "you" to tell us what portions we can trust and what we can't. You sound like a David Koresh anti-christ.

Someone should give you a one-way ticket to the funny-farm.

PS: Though that being said, it is encouraging to see that someone so blind as you are to deny so much of God's Word (which was breathed by God's Spirit) that someone like you would be so opposed to Calvinism. That fact is good evidence for the God-centered truth behind much of Reformed teaching. Thanks! You've helped me see that Satan also hates Calvinism!

Gentle Yoga said...

Please remove my image from your blog. You are using it without my permission.

I do not care about your belief system, you are not allowed to use my image to support your concepts.

ktcool said...

@ Gentle Yoga. Which image is yours? From what I see all the images are from public domain.

petrov said...

You cannot argue with arrogant christians who think they have the one and only ticket to the hereafter. What they do not realize is that their whole religion with all of its feasts etc are of pagan origen. Ignore fools like this