Stretching My Faith, and maybe other lousy puns

I found this through the grapevine. The yoga instructor mentioned apparently knows, or at least went to school with, one of my Facebook friends. (She may or may not know someone who knows someone who was in a movie with Kevin Bacon.)

I always get fairly irritated at Christians preaching against yoga. Yes, it’s related to religious practices that aren’t Christianity, but any modern practice of yoga that I’ve gone to is either straight-up exercise, or is very neutrally spiritual, not throwing out any contradictions but giving you threads that you can relate to your own beliefs, whatever they might be. And for me it can be a prayer. I’ve discovered that the length of time it takes me to sing the doxology (“Praise God from whom all blessings flow, praise him all creatures here below. Praise him above ye heavenly host. Praise Father Son and Holy Ghost. Amen”) is a good length of time to hold a stretch. This is done under my breath, because a lot of my yoga is done in brief spurts at work, trying to fend off the sciatica and wrist issues that are the hazard of an office job. So, something that, for me, brings back mindfulness and thoughts of God into a stressful day is unChristian? I don’t buy it.

Besides which, if we’re obligated to reject any practice with religious roots outside Christianity, we’re going to have to give back that celebration at the end of December, particularly the bit with bringing trees indoors. Easter is 99% ours, and we can probably keep it, but we may need to ditch the bunnies and eggs (fertility symbols). We may also need to change the name, just in case Bede was correct about Eostre and not just making her up.

Also, the rest of Christianity should maybe ditch the days of the week and the days of the month too, all named for Roman or Germanic deities, like the Quakers did way back. (They seem to run a hundred or two years ahead of the rest of us in a lot of things–by *1790* for example, Quakers weren’t allowed to own slaves.)

Or we could maybe embrace the crazy idea that other cultures and religions and schools of thought besides Christianity have come up with valuable stuff. (Like, for example, a lot of key mathematical concepts come from either ancient Rome or the Islamic world.) Seriously, Christianity and the cultures that are predominantly Christian do not have the market cornered on good ideas. And the idea that I have to say that, that it isn’t blazingly blindingly self-evident, well, gah…


2 thoughts on “Stretching My Faith, and maybe other lousy puns

  1. John Grebe says:

    The same goes for anything that is outside of the mainstream church culture, in how Christians and especially pastors from the pulpit are too quick to condemn things that they do not understand as anti-Christian, instead of taking the time to try to honestly learn about and evaluate it first. From personal experience I can attest that Christians who are mystics get the same type of things as Christians who practice yoga. I’ve had people accuse me of practicing magic to trying to incorrectly lump mysticism into the slippery slope of “flirting with the new age movement and Buddhism, which goes to show that they had no idea what they are talking about.

  2. itsalllissasfault says:

    Yep, I can definitely picture that. Never mind that Christian mysticism is way older than the New Age movement.

    I think it’s part of the belief that any slight contact with something un-Christian will horribly contaminate you, or that other religions are terribly tempting–you can’t examine something rationally if you’re scared that even thinking about it will corrupt you and put you on a path to damnation.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s