Is Yoga for Christians?
There are a lot of people doing yoga these days. But is yoga for Bible-believing followers of Christ? I can’t speak for you nor would I try to tell you what to do. However, I would like to explain what I believe and have experienced.
We live in a world with two dimensions, physical and spiritual. We live where these intersect. For instance, most people don’t have a problem with angels. Hearing stories concerning angels who protected someone from an attacker, who pulled another to safety after an accident, or ministered to one who was sick encourages us and makes us feel good. It gives us hope.
However, if there are angels, then there are demonic forces at work around us, too.
We can’t have one without the other.
Angels are God’s messengers and helpers. They are even our guardians.
Demons are the exact opposite. They hate us and wish us harm. They are never benign.
From the beginning, Satan wanted to be like God. Isaiah 14:12-14, describes Lucifer’s descent to hell. There are 5 “I will” sentences spoken by Satan in this passage. The last one says, “I will make myself like God.” This is why we have false gods in our world. Satan wants to be worshipped as God. He will do anything to make it happen by deceiving mankind.
Now for my story:
Recently, I was invited to a women’s event at a small fitness studio. The owner was a sweet, young woman and a relatively new believer in Christ. She had Bible verses around her place with Christian music playing as we followed her exercise routine on mats on the floor. She was encouraging, she even stopped to pray for us at various times. A couple of times, I wondered if we were doing yoga. The thought came and went many times throughout the routines. She didn’t call it yoga, nor did she use any familiar yoga terms, so I continued going along with her positional stretches.
It all seemed well and good, until a few days later….
I woke with the worst pain in my abdomen. Assuming it was something I ate, I spent most of the night trying to take the pressure off my stomach. The pain went through to my back and made any position in my bed uncomfortable. I felt a little better in the morning, but it came back. Trying everything to rid my body of the pain, I changed what I ate thinking I was having a reaction to dairy products. I ate little food some days hoping it would help; even fasting for a few days, but still, the pain continued.
After two weeks, I was convinced I had cancer growing inside my gut somewhere.
Fear overtook my rational thinking and told me I was dying.
Fear overwhelmed me.
I told a friend from my church I needed prayer. I intended to go to church on Sunday morning and have our prayer warriors pray for me. But Sunday morning, the pain was terrible. I told my husband I could not go.
The Holy Spirit reminded me I could not get prayed for unless I went. So, I asked Him to help me feel good enough to go to church.
He did, and I went.
During prayer time, I was prayed over by three people. At one point a friend said she felt impressed by the Spirit that it was something I had done at the women’s event a couple of weeks earlier. She told me it was not physical, but a spiritual issue and to pray and ask the Lord to show me what it was.
I did just that.
He clearly showed me it was the “yoga” I had done.
During prayer, my friend rebuked the pain and the spirit associated with it. I was healed at that moment.
No more pain and no more fear.
Later during prayer, I asked the Lord to forgive me for taking part in the yoga routine.
He taught me a valuable lesson about the power of something which seemed so innocent. Yoga is far from innocent.
An elder at our church, born and raised in India, taught a class on Eastern Religion two weeks ago. He was raised in a Christian home and did not experience any of the Hindu teaching or rituals. Deciding he needed first-hand information about yoga, he sought the Lord and counsel from his pastor and elders. After receiving permission from the Lord and knowing he would be protected, Doug’s pastor released him to join the Yoga school in order to teach others the dangers of this practice.
Doug explained what I had experienced was the Kundalini spirit. It is a snake-like demonic spirit associated with yoga which sits at the base of the spine. It causes tremendous pain.
Putting on Christian music and adding prayer does not make this ancient practice a Christian exercise. Dismissing its foundations by trying to turn yoga into a sanguine practice is impossible. An evil spirit doesn’t leave because you call something godly.
It’s about the roots.
Just because I cut down a tree does not mean it cannot grow again. Its roots are still in place. My husband had to cut down many live trees on our property. Believe me when I tell you getting rid of the roots is NOT easy; they go deep.
That’s what roots do.
They travel far and deep to find water and nourishment for the tree. You can only kill roots by pulling them out of the ground.
Yoga’s roots are similar to a tree’s. It is based in an ungodly religion with many false gods. It was created as part of a ritual to serve and worship these gods. Practicing yoga opens up our mind to other spirits, even if you are meditating on God.
You cannot remove the roots from yoga.
They are firmly in place.
We must seek God and His wisdom regarding yoga. What is the worst thing He can say? “No?” He wants what is best for us. He wants to protect us. He is not taking away our fun.
He was trying to protect me, but I did not listen. There were consequences for not listening.
I realize what happened to me is not the norm. Some of you may comment negatively, saying all this is untrue. You may have never experienced anything remotely negative doing yoga. That’s fine, and I am glad you haven’t.
I felt led to share this on my blog. If one person gets something out of it, then it was worth writing.