What’s Wrong With Yoga and Other New Age Practices?

Some New Age practices are clearly against Christian beliefs. However, it’s a little harder to discern the problem with other, more common, practices.

I had that problem with yoga – even though I had been told that yoga positions are actually designed to “worship one of more than three million Hindu gods and/or facilitate the flow of prana (life force energy) through the body.”

While I have never been a yoga practitioner myself, I didn’t really understand why this would be a problem if you were just doing it to get exercise and not with the intention of worshiping false gods.

Susan Brinkmann, "Women of Grace" journalist and author of a new book on the New Age entitled "Learn to Discern," shown here in EWTN's lobby just after filming a new episode for WOG.

Susan Brinkmann, “Women of Grace” journalist and author of a new book on the New Age entitled “Learn to Discern Compendium,” shown here in EWTN’s lobby just after filming a new episode for WOG.

Enter Susan “Sue” Brinkmann, a journalist for Johnnette’s Benkovic’s “Women of Grace” and an expert on New Age practices (who I am quoting above). Sue, who also happens to be a great friend, just wrote a book that you can purchase through EWTN Religious Catalogue, called “Learn to Discern Compendium.” (Find the link below.)

While the story I am about to share here is not in her new book, trust me, you can learn a LOT about New Age practices, including yoga, by purchasing this must-read book.

Sue recently told me that “Women of Grace” frequently gets questions about yoga. It was during one of Johnnette’s retreats that this question came up once again. That day, Sue was especially tired and the last thing she wanted to do was speak in front of a room full of people. But a yoga question came up and Johnnette called her forward.

As Sue stood up, she said a quick prayer to the Holy Spirit and was suddenly inspired to do the following.

“Alright everybody,” she said. “On your feet. “We are now going to exercise the muscle underneath our upper arms. Are you ready?”

Sue then raised her arm and performed a very exaggerated and very deliberate Sign of the Cross!

WOW! Wow! The group burst into spontaneous applause.

Of course! Could the Sign of the Cross EVER be “just an exercise”! Of course not! So how could a yoga pose to a Hindu god be“just an exercise.”

This is so brilliant, I had to share it! Susan Brinkmann’s book is equally inspired. Get it; read it; learn from it; share it! You can find it at http://www.ewtnreligiouscatalogue.com/shop.axd/ProductDetails?edp_no=30517.

Also, for more information about yoga and other New Age practices, check out Sue’s blog posts for “Women of Grace” at http://www.womenofgrace.com/blog/?p=17011.

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11 Responses to What’s Wrong With Yoga and Other New Age Practices?

  1. Sarah says:

    To me this example does not compare to doing yoga for the mere purpose of stretching and correcting muscle and posture imbalances. The argument you posted is: If the sign of the cross isn’t just exercise, then a yoga pose also is not “just exercise.” The discrepancy is when we make the sign of the cross we are fully aware that we are making this sign in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and we do so with the intention of piety and devotion. THAT is what makes it not “just an exercise.” Similarly, if one were to do a yoga position with the intention of worshipping whomever, that would make it for a Catholic a heretical act. It seems to be a matter of intention in both cases.

    • mjohnsonewtn says:

      But think of this Sarah. If you were a devout Hindu and someone told you to make the Sign of the Cross as an exercise, would that make it “just an exercise” even if you didn’t know what you were doing? That’s the point. It really made me think!

      • Sarah says:

        Yes. Let’s say hypothetically I am a devout Hindu. If someone suggests I try this new exercise, th sign of the cross, I will not be making this sign out of devotion and piety for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. My intention, as a Hindu, would be to do it for the benefit of the exercise.

        • mjohnsonewtn says:

          But is intention all that matters? If I hurt someone without intending to, my guilt is less than if I did it on purpose, but i still did the wrong thing.

        • Val says:

          But once it’s been explained to the devout Hindu that the exercise they just preformed is a sign of belonging to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit…. do you thing that the devout Hindu would want to do that particular “exercise” again?

  2. Ann Fetters says:

    If one googles Christian/yoga, there is information giving the real reason why a Christian should not practice Yoga. Just as the Word, and the sacraments are the practice of Christianity, Yoga and the poses are the practice of Hinduism. We may think these are ‘innocent’, but they are not. Practice Pilates, but not Yoga. Hinduism IS Yoga, just as Jesus is Christianity.

  3. Mary Lou Coons says:

    Thank you for this email! This is really important information to know about.

    God bless, Mary Lou

  4. Susan Piper says:

    YES! I tried to do some Chakra UM exercises just to ease tension in my body. No bad intent. I am devout Christian. But after the first time I did it The Holy Spirit kept stopping me, saying “Don’t Do That.” So I stopped trying to do that. I figure there MUST be a terrible Spiritual battle there if The Holy Spirit told me NO. Since then I have been learning to sit quietly and fully with JESUS. WOW! NOTHING better. One late night I was so jazzed up from sitting with Jesus, I couldn’t go to sleep for a long time. May The LORD Bless each and everyone of us with HIS Presence—Amen.

  5. terrence baker says:

    this link answers many questions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWI1ieDz_B4

  6. “Think you can be Christian and do Yoga? PLS LISTEN TO THIS!” https://youtu.be/6DZ7oz_fIq8

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