Is It a Sin For a Christian Woman To Do Yoga?

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yoga short hairBy Staff Blogger

Many people see yoga as a form of physical exercise. It is offered at most gyms and exercise studios, so it’s not hard to understand why many people overlook the fact that it is both a physical and spiritual practice.

The question of whether or not Christians are committing a sin by doing yoga is an interesting one because it could be argued that the physical part of yoga is just a series of stretches and exercises. The problem is that with yoga many also argue that the spiritual aspect of yoga can not be separated from the physical. This means that in practicing the physical part of yoga, one is also practicing the spiritual.

Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr.,president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, explains:

 “When Christians practice yoga, they must either deny the reality of what yoga represents or fail to see the contradictions between their Christian commitments and their embrace of yoga. The contradictions are not few, nor are they peripheral. The bare fact is that yoga is a spiritual discipline by which the adherent is trained to use the body as a vehicle for achieving consciousness of the divine. Christians are called to look to Christ for all that we need and to obey Christ through obeying his Word. We are not called to escape the consciousness of this world by achieving an elevated state of consciousness, but to follow Christ in the way of faithfulness.

There is nothing wrong with physical exercise, and yoga positions in themselves are not the main issue. But these positions are teaching postures with a spiritual purpose. Consider this — if you have to meditate intensely in order to achieve or to maintain a physical posture, it is no longer merely a physical posture.”

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15 Comments

  1. I’m a Christian and have taken Hatha and Dahn yoga classes on and off for years. Not once has a yoga instructor even hinted any religious practice or affiliation. These views are nonsense.

  2. The poses in Yoga are worship to the spirits in the spirit realm. Every pose has a meaning to the gods of the religion.

    The thing is Christians in America are not taught to research anything. They feel that as long as they go to church, pray and believe in Jesus, they are saved and it doesn’t matter what they do in their lives because they have salvation. And that just isn’t true.

  3. While it is absolutely true that the physical practice of yoga comes from an ages old spiritual tradition, it is possible to practice the physical aspects of yoga without embracing the the spiritual dimensions of it. Doing so can be done deliberately if one knows the whole truth of yoga. But even without the historical background, many commercial gyms offer yoga classes that teach people flexibility and how to increase their strength without getting into the spirituality of yoga at all. In the smaller yoga studios it’s a different matter and one has to be careful.

    To INSIST that Christians cannot practice yoga and derive physical benefits without dishonoring Christ in someway (especially if one understands what yoga is) is absurdity that borders on legalism. Yes, the asanas have names like Sun Salutation and other things that invoke Eastern “deities” but saying Thursday recalls a Norse deity. Should Christians rename the days of the week so as not to dishonor Jesus?

    I take my faith and my relationship with God very seriously,but some of the things people do to be more faithful are unbiblical and thus, unnecessary.

  4. This article goes on my ridiculous list. Who says one can’t use yoga positions to meditate on the goodness of God and the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus Christ?

  5. Why is this even a issue? Yoga is a balance of body, mind, and spirit. All spiritual practices are relevant to your lifestyle and your perception. Don’t confuse spirituality with religion. I feel everyone should get involved in some kind of physical movement. Yoga benefits the soul, body and mind. Meditation is something that Yoga suggest as well as the asanas. Just get moving. People are too obese in this country, especially in the religious sector.

  6. marcus davis on

    Nothing wrong with doing yoga if you,re a christian ,but then again what is wrong with achieving a higer state of conciousness to begin with anyways? is,nt that what so called christians are supposed to aspire to? Is,nt a god conciousness a higher level of conciousness to begin with anyways?A stupid topic.If you ask me i think that it should be mandotary for all these pork chop eating pastors and christians to practice yoga.

  7. coast cooker on

    Nothing wrong with doing yoga. Something is wrong with your brains to be a christian. most likely brain dead..

  8. This is how Dogma hinders the cause of Christ. I’m Christian and I meditate regularly. If more Christians practiced meditation they would have a better understanding of what Christ really lived, died and was raised for.

  9. “My people perish from a lack of knowledge.” Hosea 4:6 I was an avid yogi for years! Then, I heard that it was a Hindu practice to achieve greater spirituality, which is contrary to what Christians believe. So I researched and I found out that this is definitely what yoga is. There are even Hindu believers trying to reclaim yoga for its true meaning, not what we have reduced it to in the US. A Hindu scholar also agrees: ***
    I’ve prayed about it and was no longer comfortable practicing yoga. I don’t believe you will go to hell if you’re a Christian that does yoga. But, it is your responsibility to research and learn everything you can about all that you do. This is biblical. So research yoga’s origins and pray about it. You’ll know in your spirit whether you should continue or not.

  10. Saying Christians cannot do yoga is like saying Christians cannot have dolls since dolls can be traced back to idol worship and have been used to practice witchcraft. Utterly ridiculous!

  11. It is christians like this really cracks me up with their blissful ignorance and stupidity.

    The christian religion is not a healthy one if it prevents you from maintaining a healthy lifestlye. The christian religion is not a healthy religion since is preaches against learning and logic.

  12. Our ignorance is killing us…literally! For those who STUDY history and strive to be knowledgeable, and who realize that God is too great to be placed in our narrow boxes, understand that yoga and meditation, like prayer, are all forms of spiritual praise and discipline that emanate from the almighty presence of God–our ultimate life force and creator. Yoga is a spiritual teaching–not a religion, and has been adopted and adapted over the centuries by many all over the world of many faiths. It is just one more addition to the many spiritual tools left to us to bring us in closer alignment with the God-spirit within-no matter what our specific religion or faith. God is UNIVERSAL and we need to be also. I am a 41 year old Black Christian woman and I WILL practice yoga while signing God’s praises and honoring his goodness 24-7 while strengthening the temple he have me. Let’s grow up Black folks and FREE OUR MINDS!

  13. I am a Christian and I do meditate but not the way of yoga…meditation is good but not meditating on the universe but pondering on the word of God…chopra compares budha to Jesus Christ as the masters…is there anyone dead or alive who can compare to the Savior (Jesus Christ) the answer is No…The Jesus said I am the way the truth and the life no goes to the father except thru me…many Christians are lazy and will never read the word to know the truth…YOGA IS EVIL READ ABOUT IT.

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