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What Does The Catholic Church Say About Yoga

A New And Diabolical Approach

The Council thus declared:

It is fully in keeping with the Councils intentions for Christians to follow the example of other religions, even non-Christian religions, even those that go completely against the true Faith and Christ, the only Savior of mankind. This text, unprecedented in two-thousand years of Christianity, expresses a sincere respect for practices, doctrines and rites that ignore the true God as He has made Himself known through Revelation and as He offered Himself in the perfect act of religion, His redeeming Sacrifice.

Even while pretending not to abandon its mission of announcing Christ, the modern Church born of the Council no longer fights against idolatry in all its forms and has eyes only for other religions. It is not just a question of diplomacy towards their leaders and representatives; it is an unbelievable indulgence for their messages, their cults, and their practices, even those that are diabolical. A mockery of God and a sure way of corrupting men.

Can Catholics Get Tattoos

The Pope has backed tattoos , saying they can help build communities. At a meeting with young people ahead of an upcoming Synod of Catholic bishops, Pope Francis told them dont be afraid of tattoos . He said that while in some cases the number of tattoos were exaggerated, they could also be a symbol of faith.

Catholics Dont Do Crystals

Can Catholics avail themselves of alternative health therapies without entering into the near occasion of New Age nonsense?

Judy Roberts

Growing up ina family that ran a health-food business, Charlene Williams learned to eat welland heal naturally.

Today the mother of four andgrandmother of four raises some of her own vegetables and fruits, shops atfarmers markets, and cooks from scratch. She also eats whole grains, avoidsprocessed foods and relies on vitamin and mineral supplements, herbs, herbalteas, and home remedies like fresh-squeezed lemon and molasses in hot water forcolds and sore throats.

In addition, she goes to achiropractor and recently saw a naturopathic doctor and bioenergeticspractitioner for help with stress and lack of energy.

But, as a Catholic, Williams iscareful to avoid the New Age ideas and practices widely peddled in thesubculture that has grown up around natural foods and alternative health care whether its the crystals and books on transcendental meditation displayed insome health-food stores, Reiki treatments offered by certain massage therapistsor yoga classes at the local gym.

Williams, whose grandparents startedDietrichs Natural Foods in their home in Toledo, Ohio, in the 1930s, told theRegister she doubts consumers interested in healthy living back then would haveencountered the unorthodox spiritual offerings ubiquitous in the industrytoday.

Eternity vs. Oblivion

Gods Good Earth

JudyRoberts writes fromGraytown, Ohio.

Can Yoga Be Just Physical

David Powlison talks about Christians engaging in physical activities that are traditionally accompanied by a non-Christian philosophy in his on Crosswalk.com.

He said practices like reflexology are based in Eastern philosophies, but asks: is touching my feet wrong?

Yoga is a pursuit of being one with God, but is stretching wrong? And karate lessons. Theres a whole worldview imparted in that. Is it wrong to learn techniques of self-defense? Youre going to want to think through and make sure youre not drinking in philosophical assumptions through the door of something that may be purely a physical activity in its own right, Powlison said. 

There are many places throughout Scripture that call Christians to be mindful and attentive to our bodies . 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says that, as Christians, our bodies are not our own but are temples of the Holy Spirit. We are reminded that we should take gentle care of the physical bodies we have been given.

Christians can use this method of exercise and meditation to glorify God. Taking time to stretch, move, strengthen, and notice our bodies can be a way that we worship the Lord and honor the Holy Spirit within us. More than most other exercise methods, yoga offers and encourages mindfulness, intention, and focus. When directed toward the Lord, all of those can be worshipful and beautiful.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Is Meditation Allowed In Christianity

Yoga is against Christian beliefs, says Indian Catholic ...

Teresa of Avila, viewed Christian meditation as a necessary step toward union with God, and wrote that even the most spiritually advanced persons always needed to regularly return to meditation. The Catechism of the Catholic Church encourages meditation as a form of prayer: Meditation is above all a quest.

The Practice Of Yoga Is Not Catholic: A Reminder From The Church In India

The practice of yoga is incompatible with Catholic doctrine, according to a report published by the Syro-Malabar Church, one of the three rites represented in the Catholic Bishops Conference of India.

The Syro-Malabar report calls for a re-reading of yoga since the government has moved towards making yoga compulsory in schools and present it as an inseparable part of Indian culture.

This is not the first time that Syro-Malabar Bishops have spoken out on this matter. Last year they stated that “yoga is not a means to reach contact with the divine, although it may contribute to physical and mental health.”

Yoga is a set of physical, mental, and spiritual practices that originated in India and spread around the world. It combines physical and breathing exercises. In Hinduism, it is also a spiritual journey to experience contact with the divine. In Indian schools, yoga is compulsory and every year, on June 21, schools focus on activities and events dedicated to yoga.

Hindu activists and intellectuals have long been fighting to make this event obligatory, forcing students to sing sacred Hindu sonnets and mantras, regardless of their religious confession.

In yoga there is no place for God, declared the Syro-Malabar doctrinal Commission chaired by Bishop Joseph Kallarangatt, who also warned of the danger of physical gestures and exercises becoming idolatrous in themselves.

What Does The Bible Say About Controversies Like Yoga

Christians have struggled to determine what is right or wrong for them to do for centuries. The Corinthian church lived in a sinful city full of pagan practices, and Paul encouraged them to be wise about their choices in 1 Corinthians 10:23:

I have the right to do anything, you saybut not everything is beneficial. I have the right to do anythingbut not everything is constructive.

There is indeed a lot of freedom in the Christian because our God has always been the God who looks at the heart.

The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart,1 Samuel 16:7.

But Paul reminds us that our freedom in Christ is not a wild freedom to do whatever we want. Loving our neighbors is a hallmark of a mature Christian.

You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: Love your neighbor as yourself, Galatians 5:13-14.

Christians have an extremely helpful resource in the Holy Spirit to guide them. Seek the Holy Spirit as you face choices to either practice yoga or refrain from it, or judge those who do or dont practice.

Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak,1 Corinthians 8:9.

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Hey Father Can Catholics Practice Yoga

Can Catholics practice yoga?

Tessie in Effingham

Crazy trivia fact: Most languages spoken across Europe and Asia are all descendants of an original Proto-Indo-European language spoken around 12,000 B. C. In Sanskrit, an ancient and medieval Indian language used in many Hindu, Buddhist and Jain writings, the noun yoga comes from the Proto-Indo-European root: yewg, meaning to join. This trickles down into English in words like yoke , through Greek in the term zygote , and through Latin in the term jugular .

In Eastern mysticism, the word yoga came to refer to the practices of self-concentration, controlled breathing, various bodily postures, and fasting for the sake of contemplation, that is, eventual liberation from the cycle of reincarnation . Yoga, meaning yoked, was thus used in the sacred Hindu Vedas to refer to both the subsuming of ones body into ones spirit and oneself into the divine .

The key difference is that all these prayer-practices are aimed toward an encounter with God who personally loves us! Christian Prayer flees from impersonal techniques or from concentrating on oneself, which can create a kind of rut, imprisoning the person praying in a spiritual privatism which is incapable of a free openness to the transcendental God .


All humans in todays world are enduring the triple stress hitting us: the pandemic of COVID-19, the financial crisis, and the climate change. Sometimes we hardly know which way to turn.

Or who to blame.


Can We Practice Yoga Catholics Ask Their Church

Manoj R Nair

After a church in Andheri started yoga classes in its premises, Catholic groups in Mumbai are once again debating about yogas compatibility with their religious beliefs.

Yoga is a term for a wide range of practices, including asanas, breathing exercises, meditation and chanting. Its practitioners have said that regular yoga has helped their mental well-being; some have said that the exercises have made them feel fitter.

Yoga has been adopted by diverse groups. A drug de-addiction centre in Mumbai run by a Catholic order, for instance, uses yoga as part of the treatment programme.

Not everyone has embraced yoga unquestioningly; here some have likened yoga to esoteric practices done by cult-like groups. Sone church-goers feel that yogas stress on the unity of the human mind with god conflicts with their religions focus on god. We are taught to pray outward to god, whereas yoga asks its practioners to look inward, said a church member.

Credible information on yoga is hard to come by and some church members have a question: Can they practice yoga without feeling guilty of having trodden on their religious beliefs?

The Andheri group, which has been discussing the issue on social forums, said they were confused when a newsletter published by the Catholic order that runs the church featured an article on how yoga helps the mind. We wanted some clarifications, said a church member. Is yoga fine as an exercise and are we not supposed to go beyond that?

What Does The Catechism Say About Social Justice

The Catechism of the Catholic Church calls social justice the respect for the human person and the rights which flow from human dignity and guarantee it. Society must provide the conditions that allow people to obtain what is their due, according to their nature and vocation.

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Yoga: What The Catechism Says

Yoga: What the Catechism says

YOUCAT, the Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2011


You shall not have strange Gods before me.  What does that mean?

This commandment forbids us:

. To adore other gods and pagan deities or to worships an earthly idol or to devote oneself entirely to some earthly good

. To be superstitious, which means to adhere to esoteric, magic, or occult or New Age practices or to get involved with fortune telling or spiritualism, instead of believing in Gods power, providence, and -> BLESSINGS

. To provoke God by word or deed

. To commit a -> SACRILEGE

. To acquire spiritual power through corruption and desecrate what is holy through trafficking .



Is esotericism as found, for example in New Age belief, compatible with the Christian faith?

No. ->ESOTERICISM ignores the reality of God. God is a personal Being; he is love and the origin of life, not some cold cosmic energy. Man was willed and created by God, but man himself is not divine; rather, he is a creature that is wounded by sin, threatened by death, and in need of redemption. Whereas most proponents of esotericism assume that man can redeem himself, Christians believe that only Jesus Christ and Gods grace redeem them. Nor are nature and the cosmos God . Rather, the creator, even though he loves us immensely, is infinitely greater and unlike anything he has created.


The Catechism is simply the magisterial teaching of what is embodied in the Holy Bible.

What Is The Spiritual Significance Of Common Yoga Poses

If you practice yoga , you may recognize some of these common poses from yoga class. Though helpful stretches in Western culture, they also have a spiritual significance in Eastern religion. William Kremer writes, To those in the know, for example, the yogic asanas, or positions, retain elements of their earlier spiritual meanings.

1. Sun Salutation

This series of poses is done as a warm up or cool down in yoga. It gets the blood flowing and warms the body. The benefit of a sun salutation is to stretch the whole body and prepare you for more challenging poses if done as a warm up. As a cool down, its aim is to calm and focus you, preparing your mind to face the rest of the day.

In Hinduism, the Sun Salutation or the Surya namaskar is a series of positions designed to greet Surya, the Hindu Sun God.

2. Cobra Pose

This part of the Sun Salutation stretches the torso, as you look upward and arch your back with hands planted firmly below shoulders on the mat with toes gently resting behind.

The alternate meaning behind this pose also called Bhujangasana is the Hindu idea the spirit-snake power that is activated and elevated in the body by means of yoga; also associated with Patanjali, the sage who wrote the Yoga Sutras, who is depicted as a hybrid man-snake.

3. Warrior Poses

4. Half Spinal Twist

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Can You Be A Catholic And A Yogi


Jennifer Kurdyla

Lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu.… I sit on my yoga mat, ankles crossed in a Half Lotus pose, eyes closed and struggling to form the shape of these foreign sounds in my mouth. Horns blare and headlights shine dimly through the gossamer-curtained windowthe thinnest of veils separates us from ever-bustling New York City. My teacher is inviting us to join her in this ancient Sanskrit chant that translates to may all beings everywhere be happy and free.

For several weeks understanding the phonetics of this phrase had been about as challenging as executing a headstand. Tonight I finally I get the hang of it, and the sounds float as freely from my throatfrom my heartas does the unifying sound of Om that started and ended our practice . My teachers had always referred to these chanting rituals as sacred. That description never made sense until the phrases resonated in me like other melodiesthe songs I sang in Mass every week; songs that somehow seemed to be the same in churches I attended growing up in East Brunswick, N.J., then during college in Cambridge, Mass., and now in the mecca of ambition and drive, New York City. Had yoga, and the Eastern religions behind it, somehow become sacred to me, a practicing Catholic?

What drew me to yoga was something admittedly unphilosophical.

In the dark room with soothing, repetitive music, the anxieties of my day and my body melted away.

Simcha Fisher

will seek to treat all you meetas Christ would treat them.

What Is So Special About Yoga

Yoga is a great form of physical exercise, leading to a strong body and allowing for the effective elimination of toxins mainly through the practice of asanas and pranayama. Yoga is not only a physical work out but also a mental work out. In fact the physical exertion of the body is used as a tool to focus the mind.

Is Yoga Compatible With Christianity

Some Catholics are also teaching yoga as a Christian practice. He insists that yoga has always brought him closer to Christ. Christian yoga is not just an American thing. Indian Catholic priest Joseph Pereira has written about Christian yoga and teaches yoga for the practice of Christian meditation to Indian audiences.

What Does Yoga Mean To Christians In India

Christians living in India are also conflicted about this ancient practice. In a culture where yoga is both spiritually and physically embraced, Christians are naturally more cautious about practicing yoga in their cultural context. 

Some Christians engage in yoga with their Hindu neighbors as a way to introduce the gospel, but The Syro-Malabar Church says that approach is confusing Indian Hindus.

Many Hindus view the love of Christians towards yoga as part of a covert attempt to convert people and as an unnecessary infringement on Hindu customs, according to The Syro-Malabar Church in the Faithwire.com article.

According to the 2011 census, 79.8% of the population of India practices Hinduism and 2.3% identify as Christians. In an environment like this, is the urging for Christians to avoid yoga a legalistic rule? Or is it simply a way for Christians to love their neighbor. While Christians in America may be at liberty to stretch freely in yoga poses, Christians in India may be right to consider a more culturally sensitive approach with their Hindu neighbors.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

The Trouble With Yoga

In the last few years yoga, to use Internet lingo, has gone viral. Stores are filled with yoga clothing, equipment, books, and videos; churches and synagogues offer yoga classes to their congregants, with some Christian communities claiming to offer Christian-based programs; and even the in secular world paeans to and critiques of yoga fill the bookstore shelves.

Many Catholics have been asking if they can use yoga, and they have been given a wide spectrum of answers by clergy and lay Catholic leaders. What exactly is yoga? Are there legitimate concerns about its use by Christians? Have Catholic leaders been fair and accurate in their analysis of the strengths and dangers of yoga?

Christians Should Not Do Yoga Says Indian Catholic Church

The Syro-Malabar Church’s doctrinal commission in India said the theology of yoga does not align with the beliefs of Christianity, in a report posted by the Mananthavady diocese.

The group claimed while yoga is a good tool to treat health issues, such as breathing troubles, it cannot be used to bring a person “close to God.”

“There is danger in interpreting the results obtained through yoga practise as spiritual benefits. Hindu leaders also do not agree in presenting yoga as separate from Hindu religion. The contention that yoga practise will help in building religious amity in a multi-religious culture is baseless,” the read.

The commission noted that the doctrine of yoga is beyond Christian beliefs. “The experience of yoga is that the practitioner, nature and God becomes one but according to Christianity, nature and God cannot become one,” it said.

The commission added, “Many Hindus view the love of Christians towards yoga as part of a covert attempt to convert people and as an unnecessary infringement on Hindu customs.”

The notice also reminded citizens of Pope Francis’ take on yoga and God. “There is no need to seek spiritual answers in a yoga class. When you try to imitate the spiritual ways of other religions, chances of spiritual accidents are more,” the quoted Francis as saying.

After the exercise boomed into a multi-billion-dollar industry, movements have pushed back suggesting Christian yoga is not a legitimate practice.

Why Is Yoga Bad

However, in a recent study yoga caused musculoskeletal pain mostly in the arms in more than one in ten participants. He added: We also found yoga can exacerbate existing pain, with 21 per cent of existing injuries made worse by doing yoga, particularly pre-existing musculoskeletal pain in the upper limbs.

Catholicism And Mindfulness: Compatible Practices Or Contrary Spiritualities

The Churchs mystical tradition is rarely, if ever, addressed from the pulpit, says Susan Brinkmann, author of a new book on the practice of mindfulness, which leaves many vulnerable to being drawn into eastern forms of prayer that are not compatible with Christian prayer.

January 7, 2018Carl E. Olson,

The practice of mindfulness has been getting much attention in recent years, crossing over into mainstream, as evidenced by books with titles such as 10-Minute Mindfulness,  Mindfulness for BeginnersMindfulness: An Eight-Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World, and The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation . But mindfulness has now, says author and journalist Susan Brinkmann, OCDS, author and award-winning journalist, who is a member of the Third Order of Discalced Carmelites and staff journalist for Women of Grace, one of the hottest new spiritual practices of our day.  Corporate executives, Hollywood stars, medical doctors, teachers, secretaries, and even clergy are avidly embracing it. But what, exactly, is mindfulness? What are its roots and its goals? And is it compatible with Catholicism and the Catholic spiritual tradition?

Brinkmann, who wrote the recently published book A Catholic Guide to Mindfulness, corresponded with CWR editor Carl E. Olson to discuss mindfulness and to offer a Catholic perspective.

CWR: For those who arent familiar with it, what is the mindfulness movement? What are its roots and aims?

Yoga Is A Physical Discipline That Is Completely Blind To Religion Or Religious Identities

Catholicism and Yoga: What Does the Church Say?

Yoga…is the very least of the huge problems of credibility that exist and are multiplying for the Catholic Church in Ireland


Om Shanti Bishop Phonsie! Its okay, tuck the cross back into your cassock and save the garlic for another day because, believe me, yoga comes in peace. It has no agenda, no proselytising motive for it is not a religion.

Yoga has neither an inferiority complex nor does it suffer delusions of grandeur. Yoga has no arguments with religions of any kind because it doesnt offer itself as an alternative. Yoga just is yoga.

Yogas origins can be traced to the Vedas, the ancient Indian texts dating from around 1900BC from which also arose the Hindu, Jain and Buddhist religions. So yoga is not a Hindu practice though it shares its origins with that religion.

Modern yoga in its most popular forms, as practised all over , can be attributed to Sage Patanjali who, sometime in the period between 200AD and 400AD, codified the Yoga Sutras which to this day serve as a guide to posture, breathing and meditation.

Yogis might well be possessed, but only with a desire to keep mind and body in good condition

Yoga is a physical discipline that is completely blind to religious identities, allowing people of any or no faith to achieve as strong a mind-body connection that their individual practice will allow them to reach.


Fit and healthy

Just everyday ordinary Irish people from every walk of life trying to keep their minds and bodies de-stressed.

Lost faith

‘harry Potter And Yoga Are Evil’ Says Catholic Church Exorcist

For most people it is a way of toning the limbs and soothing the stresses of everyday life, but the Catholic Churchs best-known exorcist says yoga is evil.

Father Gabriele Amorth, who for years was the Vaticans chief exorcist and claims to have cleansed hundreds of people of evil spirits, said yoga is Satanic because it leads to a worship of Hinduism and all eastern religions are based on a false belief in reincarnation.

Reading JK Rowlings Harry Potter books is no less dangerous, said the 86-year-old priest, who is the honorary president for life of the International Association of Exorcists, which he founded in 1990, and whose favourite film is the 1973 horror classic, The Exorcist.

The Harry Potter books, which have sold millions of copies worldwide, seem innocuous but in fact encourage children to believe in black magic and wizardry, Father Amorth said.

Practising yoga is Satanic, it leads to evil just like reading Harry Potter, he told a film festival in Umbria this week, where he was invited to introduce The Rite, a film about exorcism starring Sir Anthony Hopkins as a Jesuit priest.

In Harry Potter the Devil acts in a crafty and covert manner, under the guise of extraordinary powers, magic spells and curses, said the priest, who in 1986 was appointed the chief exorcist for the Diocese of Rome.

They could degenerate into a cult of the body that debases Christian prayer, the document said.

Italian yoga schools said Father Amorths criticism was absurd.


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