Some people think Christian yoga makes about as much sense as Jewish chemistry… or Islamic mathematics. It’s a fundamental category error. Yoga, at least as practiced in the west, is a system of physical and mental exercises that has nothing to do with Christianity, these critics say. Go to church. And go to yoga class if you must. But certainly don’t mix the two up.
But I disagree. Christians who practice yoga – or the other Eastern spiritual body-mind disciplines of mindfulness, meditation, Tai Chi, and so on – bring with them the unique philosophical outlook and habits of mind that come with Christianity. While they explore what the Eastern practices have to offer them, they do so on their own terms, with their own perspectives. If, in the process of practicing these Eastern disciplines, they make modifications to accommodate their spiritual beliefs, so what? Isn’t that their right?
Now, I admit that I prefer to get my Eastern stuff straight. If I take a Tai Chi, Aikido or a yoga class, I’d rather take it from someone steeped in the traditions of these disciplines. I’d rather use the terminology of the traditional discipline, study what the discipline offers on its own terms. Later, I may decide which parts of what I learned don’t really harmonize very well with what I truly believe from my western (Christian) perspective, but I’m a big boy and can make those judgments myself.
That’s why I’m not really a fan of the Praise Moves or the “Wholly Fit” style of Christian Yoga – although I’m sure it helps very many people and I know its practitioners are sincere — in which all of the yoga postures are renamed from their “pagan” roots. Ditto meditation. If I go on a Zen meditation retreat, I want my Zen straight. Teach me what Zen has to offer… on its own terms and in its own way… and then I’ll decide for myself it I can harmonize Zen meditation with my Christian faith. I find little in minimalist Zen meditation to which any regular Christian could object… while at the same time I am careful not to say that Eastern meditation is the same as Christian contemplative prayer.
Now, that said, I will admit that Christians who have been practicing these Eastern disciplines for a long time do make their own adjustments – and that’s fine. There is a Christian Zen sitting group near me that has been around for ages (decades). These folks have developed their own synthesis. They are faithful Christians who think that traditional Zen meditation helps them, grounds them, perhaps prepares them for a more mature prayer life. But it’s pretty traditional Zen, all in all.
After a while, I think long-term practitioners do feel the need to evolve something new that explicitly integrates what they learn from Eastern practices with the unique spiritual outlook that is Christianity. And that’s why I think there is a real Christian Yoga vocation (yoga being used in a broad sense).
The unique Christian understanding of incarnation actually brings a depth and a pathos to yoga practice that enriches it.
Unlike traditional yoga and Indian philosophy generally, Christians don’t believe that human beings “cast off” their bodies like so many worn-out clothes at death – only to take on new ones in a reincarnated existence.
Rather, Christians have this strange, rather radical, certainly unusual belief that we are our bodies – and that God will miraculously preserve and render them immortal and luminescent in a resurrected state. Thus, the yoga emphasis on bodily care, awareness and health is thus completely harmonious with the Christian understanding of our bodies as temples of the Holy Spirit. This is what the founder of Christian yoga – Père J.-M. Déchanet – was getting at when he tried to adapt the spiritual psychology of William of Saint-Thierry to a fairly traditional hatha yoga practice.
Remember, Man, that you are dust… and unto dust you shall return. (Gen 3: 19)
Today is Ash Wednesday, the start of the penitential season of Lent, when Catholics and many other Christians as well go to church to receive ashes on their foreheads. Traditionally, when the priest or minister placed ashes on your forehead, he or she murmured the phrase, taken from Genesis: Remember that you are dust and unto dust you shall return. These are the words that God speaks to Adam and Eve in the Garden after the Fall.
These days, people prefer a more “positive” message, so many churches say something like, “Repent and believe in the Gospel,” or, if it’s a Jesuit church, something like, “Practice faith-justice!”
One of the weirdest and most macabre sites in Rome is the famous “bone house,” Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini, run for centuries by the Capuchin friars (an offshoot of the Franciscans). It never fails to creep people out… and it’s a great place to bring jaded teenagers who think they’ve seen it all. The entire place is decorated with the bones of long-dead (and not so long dead) friars. It’s difficult to even describe. All the walls, the chandeliers, everything is made out of human bones. If you want to know just how creepy the Catholic cult of relics can get, go visit the Capuchin bone house. But at the very end, you come to a skeleton of a friar, dressed in his monk robes, with this sign in three languages: “What you are now, we once were; what we are now, you shall be.”
Christian Yoga differs from traditional yoga in that it affirms both the reality of the physical body and the reality of death. Death is not an “illusion.” It is not merely a “gateway.” It is the cessation of physical life and the decay and decomposition of the body. To face that squarely… to look upon the dried up bones of the 4,000 Capuchin friars in the bone house and understand that death is real… is part of a mature spiritual life and one of the purposes of Ash Wednesday. To be a Christian who practices yoga is to cherish the body… to care for it, keep it healthy and use it to reach out to the Divine… and yet to know that, in its present state, it will not last. As St. Paul put it in his letter to the Thessalonians, “what we will be” after death “has not yet been revealed to us” but we know that we will be “like him,” like the resurrected Christ. We are not disembodied souls that “depart” the body at death, either to take on a new body or live in a spiritual heaven.
We are our bodies, and any life after death, we affirm, will be as embodied creatures — perhaps, like the resurrected Christ appearing to Doubting Thomas, bearing the scars and wounds we earned in our physical life. Whatever the place we go after death, it will be a physical place where human bodies can exist… perfected, resurrected bodies, perhaps, but bodies just the same. Thus, Christians who practice yoga re-affirm the beauty and joy and essential necessity of our physical bodies… while also knowing, as Christians, that these physical bodies will be transformed into something even more miraculous, even more luminous.
Under the high altar in St. Peter’s basilica in Rome is another altar… and underneath that altar is another altar… and underneath that altar is a giant box about fifteen feet square, made out of the precious stone porphyry, and inside of that box is an ancient brick wall that dates back to the first century A.D., and in the side on that ancient brick wall is a burial niche, and inside that niche was found, wrapped in purple cloth reserved on pain of death to the Roman emperors, the bones of an elderly man, in his 60s or 70s, that date back to the first century. On the brick wall were also found hundreds of graffiti with phrases such as petros eni, Peter is here, or the Chi Rho symbol altered so it looks like a key (as in “keys of the kingdom”).
St. Peter’s church is built on a hill, known as the Vatican, at the base of which was an ancient Roman circus. In the middle of the circus was an Egyptian obelisk, once twice as tall as it is now, that now stands in the center of St. Peter’s square. The circus was an oblong with a long middle area that ran down the center – very similar to the circus maximus that still exists today in Rome. In the center of the circus was the obelisk, and the chariot racers made their circuits of the center area much like Judas ben Hur does in the film of the same name. In the center area, Christians were routinely executed for “halftime entertainment” – the most colorful exercise of which was when they dipped the Christians in pitch and then lit them on fire. The road leading to the Vatican circus was a cemetery, lined with tombs.
The Romans had the bizarre habit of building their tombs along public roads so the monuments to their past glory could be admired by the citizens. When, as the ancient sources tell us, the Apostle Peter was crucified upside down in the center of the Vatican circus, probably around the year A.D. 64, the disciples took his body and buried it in the road cemetery right outside – marking the spot with special signs that only the Christian community would know. For hundreds of years, Christians came quietly and secretly to this grave to honor the leader of the Roman Christian community… until, in the early 300s, a decision was made by the Emperor Constantine to build a church over the site.
The problem was that the Vatican circus was at the base of a hill, so the engineering-minded Romans built an enormous retaining wall, dozens of feet high, and then filled in the space with soft dirt, covering the circus and the streets lined with tombs. On top of this level area, now known as St. Peter’s square, they built the first St. Peter’s basilica, which lasted for more than a thousand years… until, around the time of the Protestant Reformation, the popes commissioned great Italian artists, such as Michelangelo, to build a new basilica on the ruins of the crumbling old one. To finance construction, they sold indulgences… which led Martin Luther to launch the Reformation. The money was raised, the new church was slowly built, and people forgot about the ancient cemetery buried beneath the old basilica… until 1939. In that year, workmen digging below the church, to create a new crypt for the recently deceased Pope Pius XI, accidentally punched a hole in the floor of the crypts where they bury popes beneath St. Peter’s… and looked down and saw, dozens of feet below, a necropolis, or city of the dead, undisturbed for 1,800 years. Like Pompei south of the Vatican, this ancient necropolis was like going back in time. The first century streets go on for miles beneath St. Peter’s square. In was in this ancient necropolis that archaeologists discovered, in the 1950s, the bones of St. Peter, wrapped in a purple shroud and hidden in a burial niche inside a brick wall… inside an enormous marble and porphyry box… directly beneath the high altar in St. Peter’s basilica.
The papacy is the oldest continuous monarchy in history, dating back at least to the second century and, depending upon how you interpret the evidence, perhaps to Peter himself. Traditionally, popes – known as the servant of the servants of God – serve until death. There have been 266 popes… and today, for the first time in 598 years, a reigning pope has announced his resignation. In a few weeks, perhaps more, the see of Peter will be vacant (sede vacante), and the 118 cardinals eligible to vote will gather in the Sistine Chapel to begin the difficult task choosing a successor to guide the world’s 1 billion Catholics and other friends of the Catholic Church on into the confusing 21st century.
The mission of the pope is, and always has been, to be a guardian of the partheke, the “deposit” of Faith, handed on over the centuries… and to do so in a way that it can be communicated and understood anew.
The new pope will have his hands full. In the entertaining prescient 2011 Italian film by Nanni Moretti, Habemus Papam (“We Have a Pope”) about the election of a reluctant pope who ends up resigning, a nice touch was that we heard all of the cardinals praying: Please, Lord, not me… anyone but me!
Like many Christians who practice yoga, I am hardly a purist. You could even call me a “cafeteria yogi.” I pick and choose among the various yoga practices that fit my overall lifestyle, level of fitness and religious beliefs. Fortunately, at every single yoga school where I have studied, without exception, the other students are exactly the same.
They are typical Canadian and American suburban professional types: harried moms, latte-swilling office workers, students, retired folk. The music is funky New Age chanting music, which, quite frankly, I find very relaxing and enjoy immensely. The teachers invariably say “Namaste” after class — which, despite all the hullabaloo among fundamentalists about its alleged polytheistic meanings, is just the ordinary Hindi way of saying “hello” (as my Indian relatives inform me). But beyond that, my yoga classes are about as pagan as an aerobics class down at the YMCA.
More and more people are awakening to this fact. Yoga is not the be all and end all of health. My doctor informs me that, while yoga is great for flexibility and stress-reduction, I still must hit the treadmill or swim for aerobics. If the yoga workout is particularly intense, it may qualify for the strength training that doctors now add to the list. (When are we supposed to do all this stuff, by the way?)
I find that two formal yoga classes a week are just about right for me — combined with brief but intense sessions when I wake up and right before I go to sleep. Yoga gives me something that no other activity does. It provides a systematic stretching and what I can only describe as “liberation” of muscle groups ignored by all my other sports (Aikido, tennis, swimming) and activities (walking on the beach with my wife).
It also quiets me down, physically and mentally, and harmonizes very well with a lifelong meditation practice. For Christians who find little time for prayer and contemplation in the hectic modern world, regular yoga practices literally forces them to quiet down. It relaxes you unlike anything else — and then quiets your mind.
Yoga (or Buddhist) meditation is not the same thing as Christian or Jewish prayer, but they can be a necessary preparation for prayer — even a prerequisite. Without the quiet, stillness and relaxation that yoga provides, many people find it almost impossible to pray. But Christian yogis, blessed with such islands of silence and stillness, inevitably find themselves spontaneously giving thanks and lifting their minds and hearts to God.
So, the bottom line is this: If you’ve been thinking about trying out yoga but are concerned about the alleged “spiritual dangers,” forget about it. The people who prattle on about that have rarely stepped inside a yoga studio in their lives. What you’ll find is probably people exactly like yourself — stiff, overworked, semi-arthritic, stressed-out modern men and women — who are trying to ease the kinks out of their tired bodies and souls. And that is a good thing. Namaste!
From the Orlando Sentinel
“Soul Surfer” is the best faith-based film ever made, an uplifting, entertaining and wonderfully-acted account of surfer Bethany Hamilton’s life before and after a shark bit her arm off in the waters off her favorite Hawaiian beach.
It’s corny in all the right ways, from the voice over narration in which Bethany (AnnaSophia Robb of “Race to Witch Mountain”) explains how she was “born” to do this and the surfer’s credo that kept her going after that fateful day — “Life is an adventure, and sometimes you wipe out and land in the impact zone.”
Co-writer/director Sean McNamara, a veteran of many a TV show, TV movie and “Bring It On” sequel, recreates Hamilton’s seaside Hawaiian life, complete with surfing siblings and surfing parents. A coup; landing Oscar winner Helen Hunt to play the mom and the always athletic Dennis Quaid as the dad.
Bethany and her best friend Alana (Lorraine Nicholson) are rising starlets on the local surfing scene, friendly competitors with endorsements lined up. They’re like sisters, going to the same open air church, both members of the same youth group led by Sarah, winningly played by singer Carrie Underwood. Sarah sings in the pop-gospel group at church and tries to get the girls to think about their priorities, “Get a new perspective,” especially when it comes to volunteering on youth missions.
But the girls are all about time on the water, and that (with digital trickery polishing their surfing skills) is accompanied by foreshadowing. Arresting, faintly menacing underwater shots show how vulnerable one is while paddling out to sea on a surfboard.
And sure enough, 22 minutes into “Soul Surfer,” there’s a shark attack. In a moving, alarming and electric six minute long sequence, we see the bite, the quick reaction of those with Bethany (Kevin Sorbo is wonderfully credible as Alana’s save-the-day surfing dad), the nerve-wracking race to the hospital and the panic in her parents. Hunt, as a mom weeping and praying “Please don’t take her” as she races to the hospital, will make you cry.
Craig T. Nelson offers solid support as the doctor who treats Bethany and reassures the always-calm kid when she wakes up, “Those things you’re not going to be able to do? So small.”
In many ways, the movie turns “Lifetime Original Movie” as Bethany recovers. She’s a tough kid and is determined to get back in the water “as soon as my stitches come out,” and just as determined to compete again. Robb plays her as plucky, but no Pollyanna. Nicholson, as her friend, and Sonya Balmores Chung, as Bethany’s cutthroat surfing rival, are given wonderful shades of grey to play in their differing reactions to her injury.
To read the rest of this review, click here.
The Middle East in turmoil, newly discovered ancient texts carried across borders and offered for sale to the highest bidder: It reads like the Dead Sea Scrolls story. Only this is now and some people say these texts could be a Christian type of Dead Sea Scrolls if they are authentic. That’s a big if.
British media first reported on the discovery of 70 lead codices, metal plates barely bigger than a credit card, bound together with lead straps. Their text is in ancient Hebrew and Greek. They also contain Christian and Jewish symbols.
The codices are currently in the possession of an Israeli Bedouin who says they’ve been in his family for 100 years. However the reports also say that they were discovered a few years ago in a cave in a remote area of northwest Jordan. This is near the area where first century Christians fled when Jerusalem was attacked by the Romans.
The Jordanian government is trying to get them back. “They will really match, and perhaps be more significant than, the Dead Sea Scrolls,” the director of Jordan’s Department of Antiquities, Ziad al-Saad, told the BBC.
To which Larry Hurtado says, “Chill, take a breath.” Hurtado is Professor of New Testament Language, Literature & Theology and Director of the Centre for the Study of Christian Origins at the University of Edinburgh.
Hurtado says dangling such discoveries in front of the media, before making them available to scholars, is becoming a tired game. “I’m impatient with people who go to the press and claim that they have something of enormous scholarly value and do not provide the materials for independent scholarly analysis. Controlling access to information is not how we do business in scholarship.”
Other Bible scholars and archaeologists contacted by Christianity Today were equally skeptical. “Don’t get too excited until we know what we have,” said Darrell Bock, Research Professor of New Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary. Archaeologists pointed out that any ancient item discovered out of context faces huge hurdles before it can be authenticated and properly dated.
To read the rest of this article, click here.
Zen meditation is a Japanese technique of focusing on a specific thing or thought. The tradition has been passing on from one generation to the other for almost many centuries now. Buddhists used to practice this unique type of meditation. In fact, Zen Buddhists are often referred to as ‘Meditation Buddhists?
The amount of time devoted by Zen mediators varies widely. Experts recommend a minimum period of about five minutes on a daily basis. This is sufficient for householders to benefit from the immense benefits of Zen meditation.
The main thing one needs to focus on is daily practice. Daily practice of Zen meditation for a small period of time is more than enough to benefit from its effects than spending about half an hour once in a week.
Zen meditation has evolved as a boon to people across the globe who are really stressed out due to the irregularity, chaos and tensions existing in their daily life.
Zen meditation involves sitting in a prescribed position, closing your mind to the thoughts and images for a certain period of time. Here, your heart rate will gradually decrease and breathing becomes shallow. Slowly, you will get in to a state of deep reflective meditation.
With the help of Zen meditation, you can easily create a synergy that would further assist you in connecting to all aspects of your existence such as the body, the soul and the mind. The energy that’s required to strengthen the synergy that you have collected comes from practicing Zen meditation.
When practicing Zen meditation, your mind will only be involved. You will not be engrossing your thoughts in to what happened in the past or what will happen in the future.
You will reach a moment where you will only be reacting to what is happening to you at the present.
Zen meditation is a technique that helps you to awaken your true nature. Here, you don’t need to subscribe any of the religious teaching. You just need to realize that there is a ‘Buddha?inside you. Awaken the Buddha inside you and you will be able get a deep insight of yourself.
Zen meditation was actually meant to awaken the real person inside you.
A) Here are some of the benefits followed in Zen meditation:
1. Zen meditation lets the practitioner to relax
2. It helps you to keep one stress free.
3. It helps you to find the real you.
B) Nine steps to achieve Zen meditation:
a) Name your breaths: for instance; in and out.
b) Pay close attention to when your breath gets deep and you feel more at peace.
c) Think of your body when you breathe in and when you breathe out try to relax each part of your body. You need to focus on one part at a time. Initiate with the shoulders.
d) Calm your body parts when you breathe in feel the compassion when you breathe out.
e) Relax your facial muscles one by one and send a half smile to all parts of the body.
f) Relax all the muscles that are still tense.
g) Think of joy when you breathe in.
h) Get back to your breathe in and breathe out position.
i) Sit in the position relax.
1. Oustretched in Worship
Offers a Christian approach to yoga throughout the state of Alabama.
2. Welcome to Scripture Yoga
How could the class be Christian yoga if it wasn’t focused on God’s Word? … During the Emmaus Walk, the Christian yoga ministry was founded on the scripture: …
3. Christian Yoga?
But this is not the case with so called “Christian Yoga. … CHRISTIAN YOGA (Understand the Times Radio Commentary) 1998. Christian yoga sweeps the US (video, …
4. Christian Yoga
Non-profit organization that provides a Christian approach to Yoga. … This Christian approach to yoga simply allows us to combine these two essential …
5. YOGA – Just Exercise or a Hindu Religion?
Christian Yoga,’ I thought. … Yoga is not a Judeo/Christian word! … From this I could conclude that ‘Christian Yoga’ could only indicate one of two …
6. Christian Yoga
Christian Yoga comes from traditional Yoga. Are Christian Yoga and traditional Yoga compatible? … Can a Christian Practice Yoga? (YouTube site of Swami J) …
This type of Christian yoga is very gentle with 25 minutes of full body … Conversely, practicing Christian yoga outwardly doesn’t make one right with God; …
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10. Marsha West — Christian Yoga? C’mon!
Churches are now offering “Christian yoga.” ( An oxymoron, if there ever was one. … If your church is integrating “Christian yoga” or any other New Age practice …
11. What is the Christian view of yoga?
What is the Christian view of yoga? Is yoga just a stretching routine, or are there … Yoga originated with a blatantly anti-Christian philosophy, and that …
12. Christian Yoga
Christian yoga opens the door to some who are wary of the ancient Hindu practice. … A Beliefnet message board discusses Christian yoga. …
13. “Christian Yoga”
“Christian Yoga” Hindu yoga has been known in the West for many decades, … But the author of Christian Yoga, being a Benedictine monk, adds some particular ” …
14. Yoga and Christianity
Yoga and Christianity: take a closer look at hatha yoga, the one most often believed to be purely … I once talked to a yoga teacher who became a Christian. …
15. A new wave of Christian yoga
Long controversial in some Christian circles, yoga is fast gaining adherents … As yoga has become more mainstream, Christian alternatives have emerged. …
16. One Truth Ministries – Brian Flynn – Christian Yoga – Oxymoron
Brian Flynn conducts seminars for churches and small groups nationwide sharing his testimony and warning them of the … FACTS ABOUT YOGA Please be aware …
17. PraiseMoves – The Christian Alternative to Yoga
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Beware: New Video on “Christian Yoga” – Christoga – From the Lighthouse … Is it okay for a ‘strong Christian’ to practice Yoga? …
19. Christian Yoga?
The Phenomenon of Christian Yoga … There is no Christian Yoga. … Article by Chris Lawson, ” Christian Yoga: Rooted in Hindu Occultism” This …
20. Article – Christian Yoga and Hindu Gods
Christian Yoga and Hindu Gods “Abstain from all appearance of evil.” 1 Thessalonians 5:22 … Yoga is an ancient Hindu religious system of meditation and discipline. …
21. Christian Yoga – The new appropriation Strategy of delinking yoga from …
Christian Strategists are worried that christians who benefited from Yoga may … And now that it is “sanctified”, let’s have a brand of “Christian yoga. …
22. Yoga – Relaxation or Occult?
Yoga is from the Sankrit word Yug, meaning “union” (with the Divine, your higher ” … Cultic & Occultic Movements, Jack Sin, “Should a Christian Practise Yoga? …
23. Christian Yoga: Oxymoron
Christian Yoga-Oxymoron. Why is there such a thing as Christian Yoga? … If your reason for practicing “Christian” Yoga is to feel closer to God why …
24. Christian Yoga Magazine
And there is nothing particularly Christian about practicing yoga, either. … Yoga (or Buddhist) meditation is not the same thing as Christian or Jewish …
25. Yoga from a Christian Perspective Resources – Christians Practicing Yoga
Yoga and Healing. Meditative Prayer in the Christian Tradition – Lectio Divina … I Teach Yoga from a Christian Perspective – Yoga Deepened My Relationship …
26. Christian Yoga | Yoga
Christian Yoga, The Principle behind Christian Yoga … Christian yoga is a spiritual practice of Christians most common in Eastern and …
27. ABC News: Yoga With a Christian Bent
Yoga With a Christian Bent. Exercise Enthusiasts Reinvent the Practice to Suit Their Beliefs … faith,” said Christian yoga instructor Susan Bordenkircher. …
28. Doug Pagitt, Solomon’s Porch and Christian Yoga
John MacArthur, Doug Pagitt, Christians, and Yoga … “Christian yoga has been gaining a devout following, and Twin Cities pastor Doug …
29. Christian Yoga? – Yoga
Christian Yoga? plus articles and information on Yoga … So if a Christian group wants to practice “Son Salutations”, or “PraiseMoves, …
30. Christian Yoga
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31. Yoga and Christianity: Loving with All your Parts
Yoga and Christianity are being bridged by many people who … Actually, principles of Yoga are already contained within Christianity and Christian meditation. …
32. Discover Christian Zen |
Christian Zen means different things to different people. … Anti-Christian Yoga. Ayurveda. Bede Griffiths. Centering Prayer. Chaturanga dandasana …
33. Holy Yoga – the premier style of Christian Yoga – Testimonies
… program this is from the perspective of an experienced Christian Yoga teacher. I did receive a Christian Yoga certification from another program and spent just …
34. wcco.com – Controversy About Christian Yoga
A new fitness craze, called Christian yoga, has a very devout following, but some are criticizing the “New Testament” twist to an ancient tradition.
35. Soul Stretch | Christian yoga for all ages & fitness levels
Christian Yoga Schedule for Royal … Booking Private Christian Yoga Retreats For … here to enhance your Christian yoga practice with these recommended …
36. Yoga from a Christian Perspective Resources – Christians Practicing Yoga
Yoga and Healing. Meditative Prayer in the Christian Tradition – Lectio Divina … The “Christian Yoga Teacher Training” courses and curricula I’ve seen thus …
By Francis X. Clooney, S.J.
Several months ago I mentioned that I was teaching a seminar on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. This fundamental yoga text, from nearly 2000 years ago, is brief — 195 very succinct verses — but it is the reference point for all the later yoga systems. I promised to report on the results of the seminar (with ten fine students) at its conclusion (this week), and so here (and hereafter) I offer some reflections.
Given the great popularity and accessibility of yoga — I was told recently that 20 million Americans practice some version of it — it may seem a bit too academic to go back and study the Sutras, but I was convinced by my seminar that this is very much worth the effort, even necessary if we are to know what yoga is all about.