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Yoga in public schools now?

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Psalm 51:17
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« on: December 02, 2011, 08:39:53 am »

News report video inside link.

http://screen.yahoo.com/yoga-in-school-showing-results-officials-say-27434977.html#crsl=%252Fyoga-in-school-showing-results-officials-say-27434977.html
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« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2011, 08:51:05 am »

They said in this news report that the majority of students doing this are (supposedly)doing better in school, suspensions/detentions down, able to get along with others better, yada, yada, yada.

Don't you see the connection here? You have one pagan spiritual entity that's leading you to excel in ANOTHER secular, anti-Christian entity(that being indoctrinated with the secular public school system curriculum). I mean it's not like these kids doing yoga has helped them understand the King James Bible better. As for "getting along with others better", doesn't the Interfaith movement have this "Can't we all get along?" mentality? So what?

Seriously, for all kids out there, whether kindergarten, junior high, or high schol out there that are doing nothing better than Cs in your classes...PRAISE THE LORD that you're NOT letting all these lies and propaganda ooze into the subconscious of your brain! Personally, I almost failed English a couple of times in high school b/c I couldn't understand Greek Mythology, the Canturbery Tales, Shakespeare, among other old British lit et al.
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« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2011, 06:13:16 pm »

Glad that my kids are getting good grades. They don't need yoga. These kids need the right support from their parents and a lot of Bible reading. Smiley
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« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2011, 10:35:36 pm »

Glad that my kids are getting good grades. They don't need yoga. These kids need the right support from their parents and a lot of Bible reading. Smiley

Pretty much the ENTIRE curriculum is corrupt - anyone can study their hardest and make all the straight A's they want, but this Christ-hating, secular curriculum will only make one madder and madder.

Whatever happened to building our own places of living and growing our own foods nowdays? Today's generation(since Gen X) has been hoodwinked into thinking they can achieve big careers with promotions and raises to their hearts desires, but en yet they end up getting themselves into debt by taking out big home mortgages, using their credit cards unlimitedly, eating all the fast food they want, etc, etc.

For the record, no, I'm not trying to attack anyone who has a home mortgage, b/c I myself is living/have lived through 3 of them.
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« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2013, 05:48:36 am »

Judge to Decide If Yoga Belongs in Public Schools

A California judge began hearing arguments this week in a civil rights case concerning whether one yoga form's religious roots should prevent it from being taught in a public school system.

A lawsuit was filed against the Encinitas Union School District by The National Center for Law and Policy on behalf of Stephen and Jennifer Sedlock, whose children attend school in the district. The plaintiffs' attorneys say Ashtanga yoga, which is used as a part of the physical education curriculum in the district, is rooted in religion and is therefore being unconstitutionally taught in schools.

Candy Gunther Brown, who is an associate professor of religious studies at Indiana University, took the stand as an expert witness for the plaintiffs in the case and called Ashtanga "the most religious form of yoga," according to FOX5SanDiego.com.

"This is very intentional marketing," said Brown. "We lead with physical then introduce the spiritual aspect. I can give you quotations where people admit to this."

She did say, however, that not all forms of yoga are religious.
Yes they are even the very name is religious, yoga means to YOKE yourself, to yoke yourself to what? To Brahma.

The yoga program was introduced to the district through the K.P. Jois Foundation, an organization that granted more than $500,000 to the district to make the program possible. Although the in-school curriculum is free of religion and focuses solely on yoga positions and breathing, The breathing practices of YOGA is Transcendental Meditation.

FOX5SanDiego.com reports, Brown told San Diego Superior Court Judge John Meyer she believes a conspiracy is in the works to also get students participating in spiritual practices as well.

A K.P. Jois Foundation spokesperson said she could not offer a statement to The Christian Post at this time because of the ongoing case, though a statement on the group's temporary website describes how they hope to impact students: "As a part of the school curriculum, this program uses the techniques of yoga, meditation and proper nutrition to create a positive lifestyle change."

"We're not teaching religion," EUSD Superintendent Timothy Baird previously said about the program. "We teach a very mainstream physical fitness program that happens to incorporate yoga into it. It's part of our overall wellness program. The vast majority of students and parents support it."
But in a press release earlier this year, NCLP attorney Dean Broyles called the program "a serious breach of the public trust."

"EUSD's 'model' yoga program sets a very dangerous precedent," said Broyles. "No matter how starved our school districts are for money, we must not allow our public servants to 'sell' our precious children to the highest bidder to be used as religious 'guinea pigs' to fulfill the self-serving marketing purposes of a religiously motivated organization. Religious freedom is not for sale. EUSD's improperly cozy relationship with the Jois Foundation has entangled the district in an unnecessary and avoidable religious controversy and has caused considerable damage and negative fallout in the community."

The lawsuit seeks no monetary damages, only the suspension of the controversial yoga program.

Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/judge-to-decide-if-yoga-belongs-in-public-schools-96482/#cVeC00FY7Y64PCJq.99
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« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2013, 10:30:44 am »

Judge to Decide If Yoga Belongs in Public Schools

A lawsuit was filed against the Encinitas Union School District by The National Center for Law and Policy on behalf of Stephen and Jennifer Sedlock, whose children attend school in the district. The plaintiffs' attorneys say Ashtanga yoga, which is used as a part of the physical education curriculum in the district, is rooted in religion and is therefore being unconstitutionally taught in schools.

It's also a 501c3, FYI.
http://www.nclplaw.org/

Having glanced through its web site, it COULD be opposition-controlled(ala the late Jerry Falwell's Liberty organization). But either way, I can't see them protect the rights of churches and families when they themselves are limited in what they can do. And they use the NIV, which is another red flag.

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FOX5SanDiego.com reports, Brown told San Diego Superior Court Judge John Meyer she believes a conspiracy is in the works to also get students participating in spiritual practices as well.

Then the plaintiff needs to take their kids out of these public schools - if anyone thinks they can fight the system, then they are deceived.

2Cor 6:14  Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
2Co 6:15  And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
2Co 6:16  And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
2Co 6:17  Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
2Co 6:18  And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
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« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2013, 04:36:25 am »

Yoga is in fact a religious practice. It's not "exercise" like some think. Same with Martial Arts, it has a religious basis.

They may be physical, but then that's the point with the world, they live by the lusts of the flesh, by the sword, an "eye for an eye". It's also vanity in it's truest form with the person trying to be better physically (which is really "by the law"), when God says He will take care of that and show us how to live while in this fleshly body.

"Hast thou faith..."
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« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2013, 02:21:32 pm »

now it is just a full on slide into oblivion

Judge: Yoga fit for public schools

In perhaps the first trial of its kind in the nation, a San Diego Superior Court judge ruled Monday that yoga classes taught in the Encinitas Union School District can continue because they are not religious in nature.

Judge John Meyer issued his decision from the bench after a trial that featured a courtroom demonstration of yoga poses and a lengthy period for closing statements.

Some parents in the district had filed a lawsuit to stop the yoga program. They were represented by attorney Dean Broyles, president of the Escondido-based National Center for Law and Policy.

Broyles argued in the lawsuit and in court that the yoga program was inherently religious, and thus illegal for public schools under the Constitution. A witness called by Broyles testified that the very practice of yoga is a form of worship, whether the person doing it recognizes it as such.

But district officials said all religious aspects of the program had been stripped away, leaving no more than stretching exercises. Also involved in the case was Yoga for Encinitas Students, a group of parents in the district who supported the yoga instruction; they were represented by the Coast Law Group.

The district began offering yoga as part of its physical education program last year, paying for it with a $533,000 grant from the K.P. Jois Foundation. The nonprofit group is conducting a three-year study designed to study the effects of yoga on schoolchildren.

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/jul/01/encinitas-schools-yoga-trial-judge-ruling/
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« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2013, 02:41:04 am »

When I was in India over the last week or so, visited a Hindu temple - yeah, we all know that Hinduism teachings have infiltrated the West, but nonetheless just about everything thing I saw in it(ie-their "practices") were just very similar to a lot of what I've seen here in pop culture/society of America. Yoga is one of them. And let's not forget too how the medical profession, academia, and even Hollywood movies like "Star Wars" for example have been infiltrated with Hindu teachings via the New Age Movement.

Also, saw the same occult symbolisms occult groups like the RCC, Freemasons, etc use at their temple(ie-all seeing eye on pyramid, serpent, left-tilted cross the Knights Templars use, etc).
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« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2013, 04:39:30 am »

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paying for it with a $533,000 grant from the K.P. Jois Foundation. The nonprofit group is conducting a three-year study designed to study the effects of yoga on schoolchildren.

So they openly admit this is all just a research project for a private organization to study the affects of yoga on kids? Wow.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2013, 07:04:27 am »

Parents appeal judge’s ruling allowing yoga in public schools

Parents who say yoga is inherently religious have appealed a judge’s ruling that allowed yoga in a public school system near San Diego, saying it violates the constitutional separation of church and state.

“Our children are not religious guinea pigs and should never be subjected to such misguided religious experimentation,” said Dean Broyles, president of the National Center for Law and Policy, a nonprofit based in Escondido, Calif., dedicated to defending religious freedom, traditional marriage and the sanctity of life.

Broyles filed a notice of appeal Oct. 30 in San Diego Superior Court on behalf of parents who oppose the yoga curriculum in the Encinitas Union School District.

Broyles first filed a lawsuit regarding the district’s yoga program last February on behalf of Stephen and Jennifer Sedlock, whose child attended El Camino Creek Elementary School in Carlsbad.

In July,  San Diego Superior Court Judge John Meyer ruled against the Sedlocks, saying that the teaching of yoga in public schools does not establish a government interest in religion.

Meyer explained that although yoga is rooted in religion, it has a legitimate secular purpose as part of the district’s physical education program.

Since then, according to El Camino Creek principal Carrie Brown, the Sedlocks pulled their daughter from the school and placed her in a different school in the same district.

According to Brown, the controversy over the yoga practiced in the school district of approximately 5,000 elementary school students has died down. It is “a completely different climate,” she said, noting that only about a dozen parents still object to the program at her school of about 700 students.

“Parents have moved on,” she said.

The Encinitas yoga curriculum that runs in all nine of the district’s schools began with a $533,720 grant from the K.P. Jois Foundation, an organization launched in 2011 with a goal of helping children around the country attain better health through the discipline.

The organization, which recently changed its name to the Sonima Foundation, has given the school district a new grant of $1.4 million for the 2013-14 academic year, which has enabled the hiring of nine additional teachers, according to Elizabeth Wallace, executive assistant to the district’s superintendent.

Each student in the Encinitas School District is now taking 30-minute yoga sessions twice a week, though there is still the option for some students to opt out.

The Sonima Foundation is also working to introduce yoga into a few charter schools in Manhattan, and has worked with charter schools in Florida for several years.

For her part, Brown, the principal at El Camino Creek, says she’s happy the yoga program has continued at her school.

“Having seen this program in action for a year, I feel that it is definitely beneficial for the kids,” Brown said. “The proof is in the pudding, and the kids are doing well. That’s kinda how I feel.”

http://www.charismanews.com/us/41621-parents-appeal-judge-s-ruling-allowing-yoga-in-public-schools
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« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2014, 06:28:23 am »

Mindful meditation at school gives kids tools for emotional expression

Erica Eihl speaks in a voice that her kindergartners can hear only if they are as quiet as the church mice in children's storybooks.

And with a couple of squirrelly exceptions, they stay that quiet for 15 or 20 minutes — a near eternity — as Eihl guides them to use all their senses to consider a piece of apple, with directions such as, "Looking at the apple, look on the outside. Look on the inside.… Remember, keep it in your palm and just look at it."

When she asks for their input, she gets raised hands and comments such as: "It smells juicy and apple-y" and "I see little tiny white spots."

Mindful eating is just one of the mindful practices at the Citizens of the World charter school in Mar Vista, with 160 children in kindergarten through second grade.

"We are mindful and heartful" is the golden rule at the school, and the children practice mindful meditation in the mornings and after recess, among other times, often with 30 seconds to five minutes of silence — time when they can notice what is happening at the moment without judgment, which is at the heart of mindful meditation.

"They're very receptive to it," Eihl says. "They're so emotional at this age. It's allowing them to have the tools to be expressive" about their emotions and cope with them.

Educators are catching on to the benefits of mindful meditation.

Indeed, schools in 48 states, and hundreds of schools in California alone, have programs, says Chris McKenna, the program director at Mindful Schools in Emeryville, Calif., which has trained more than 2,000 teachers in mindfulness.

"One of the reasons it's growing is because the kids are under so much pressure now, with the testing culture and the pressure put on them by teachers and parents to be successful," says Vicki Zakrzewski, the education director at the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley, which studies the science behind mindfulness.

Mindfulness helps with focus, attention and calming the emotions, she says. Teachers and administrators, she adds, see it as a tool that also can boost school performance.

"Schools are absolutely paying attention to the benefits of mindfulness," says Lorraine Hobbs, the director of youth and family programs at UC San Diego's School of Medicine and Center for Mindfulness. "When we can teach kids to pay attention to this inner landscape," they can learn kindness and compassion.

Mindful meditation came to schools in part as they began to focus on social and emotional aspects of learning, sometimes to cope with bullying and other behavioral problems, Zakrzewski says. "We focus so much on cognitive development, but the science is showing us how important the social and emotional aspects are."

It's more than just a "nice experience," says Sharon Salzberg, a meditation teacher and author of the recent book "Real Happiness at Work." "Just like with adults, stress takes its toll, and we need to take breaks and regroup. And maybe it's as simple as remembering to breathe."

Hobbs says it's important for the adults in a school to develop a mindfulness practice. "You can't teach what you don't know," she said.

That might look like a daily meditation time, perhaps 20 minutes or so, using directions downloaded onto an iPhone. Or taking part in a group meditation program. And it also means teachers are aware of mindful ideas throughout the day.

Several experts likened the current state of mindfulness to the way people approached yoga a few decades back. These days child's pose is part of everyday language, but not so long ago yoga was seen as kooky or, worse, some odd religious practice. Like yoga, mindfulness is rooted in contemplative religious practice and like yoga has been secularized and is used as a complementary medical treatment for many conditions, as well as in schools.

At Citizens of the World, Principal Alison Kerr says, mindfulness can help equip children for the world they're growing into by giving them tools to "identify and cope with their own feelings, to be still and attentive to what's going on around them."

The classrooms have "peace corners," spots with cushions, chairs, pine cones, shells, books and other items. There are headphones to block out distracting classroom noise. Children can go there to "take five" when they are overwhelmed by their feelings or unable to manage what's going on in the class.

"Mindfulness has been my favorite thing in my whole life," says one of the students, Alia Briglia, 6. "When I'm mad, sad or frustrated, I go to the peace corner."

http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-kids-meditate-20140301,0,3995267.story#ixzz2v5gnxwoC
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« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2014, 11:09:47 am »

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Several experts likened the current state of mindfulness to the way people approached yoga a few decades back. These days child's pose is part of everyday language, but not so long ago yoga was seen as kooky or, worse, some odd religious practice. Like yoga, mindfulness is rooted in contemplative religious practice and like yoga has been secularized and is used as a complementary medical treatment for many conditions, as well as in schools.

Yes, these practices have infiltrated churches in America in recent years(partly b/c of the Emergent Church nonsense). And this practicing of "stillness", "clearing you mind", "focusing on whatever object", etc is just pure nonsense...

Philippians 4:8  Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Php 4:9  Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.

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« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2014, 12:45:59 pm »

New Agers!  Roll Eyes  A baseball bat can be used for "mindful expression", but that doesn't mean it's the thing to use!
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« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2014, 12:56:47 pm »

School scorched for having kids bow to 'sun god'
'Group liturgical practices are obviously religious'


A California school district is going too far when it has public school students “bowing to the sun god” and participating in “liturgical/ritual religious practices” aimed at having them “become one with god,” according to a brief filed with an appeals court.

The National Center for Law and Policy is taking their fight over the Ashtanga yoga teachings of Encinitas Union School District to the Fourth District Court of Appeal in California after a district judge said the school program is religious, but officials can teach it anyway.

The Jois Foundation, also known as Somina, has partnered with the district “to develop an Ashtanga yoga program to replace traditional physical education,” according to the brief filed on behalf of students and parents in the district.

Among the founders was Sonia Tudor Jones, an ardent devotee of yoga who wanted to “spread the gospel of Ashtanga through the country and even internationally.” Jones worked on a plan for a three-year “scientific study” in the schools using the religious program.

When the lawsuit was heard, the trial court judge “acknowledged that, although not structured as a religious foundation per se, Jois/Sonima is ‘deeply involved in yoga and Ashtanga yoga’ and ‘has a mission to establish and teach Ashtanga yoga,’” the plaintiffs explained.

They have pointed out that the Ashtanga yoga supporters have “affirmed … explicit teaching that the mere ‘physical practice’ of the yoga … leads practitioners to ‘become one with god … whether they want it or not.’”

The appeals court is being asked to shut down the teaching.

“The Sonima Foundation is a religious organization with a religious agenda. They have the explicitly religious ‘outreach’ ‘mission’ of teaching Ashtanga yoga to children, which is based in Hindu religious beliefs and practices,” said NCLP Chief Counsel Dean Broyles.

He charged that by partnering with Sonima, the school district “has violated the First Amendment and has committed an egregious breach of the public trust.”

“I am appalled that Sonima is arrogantly pushing ahead with its national public school launch prematurely, before the three-year study is complete and before the appeal is decided,” he said. “This shows a callous disregard for religious freedom, parental rights, and the importance of objectively studying the program.”

He blasted the teachings.

“Leading young impressionable children with tender consciences through group liturgical/ritual religious practices including bowing to the sun god, practices that lead practitioners to ‘become one with god,’ is obviously religious,” he said.

“Jois, now deceptively rebranded as the Sonima Foundation, has purchased direct access to a captive audience of young and impressionable children by paying EUSD nearly $2 million to beta test its religious Ashtanga program on kids and jointly develop a religious yoga curriculum with the district,” said Broyles.

He asserted it’s not the job of government to pick religious winners and losers.

“We must not allow the cultural elites to decide by fiat which politically correct religions, such as Hinduism or Islam, are acceptable for the state to promote to our children with our taxpayer resources, and which religions, such as Christianity, are not acceptable,” he said. “Our children are not spiritual ‘guinea pigs’ and should never be subjected to such misguided religious experimentation by the state.”

The brief to the appeals court argues that the district “still today leads the children in constitutionally forbidden religious group exercises – ritual liturgical Ashtanga yoga practices, including the Surya Namaskara A/B involving worship of the Hindu Solar Diety Surya.”

As long as the district’s “health and wellness” program is called “yoga,” the brief said, the program label “will send a positive message about ‘yoga,’ a Sanskrit term widely understood to mean yoking with the divine.”

“Even if the yoga taught in EUSD classrooms had all ‘religion’ stripped from it, which is not the case, the EUSD yoga program still conveys a positive view of other forms of ‘yoga’ children might encounter and excessively entangles the district with religion by forcing it to monitor, supervise, and control the religious speech and conduct of the yoga teachers in the classroom and embodied in the yoga curriculum.”

The case was brought by parents of children in the district’s elementary school system. They alleged that teaching yoga in schools is an improper attempt at religious indoctrination.

San Diego Superior Court Judge John Meyer heard the case and declared in his July 1, 2013, decision that yoga, including the Ashtanga yoga taught at Encinitis, is religious. But the judge also said that the district did not violate the Establishment Causes of the U.S. and California constitutions by hiring yoga instructors to teach yoga to students during class hours.

“Meyer found that EUSD had somehow stripped enough religious content out of the program so that the hypothetical ‘reasonable observer’ student would not perceive that religion was being promoted,” the legal team explained.

After objections from the plaintiffs in the case, the judge revised his decision, concluding that the school’s yoga poses are identical to those taught by Ashtanga yoga and guru P.K. Jois.

“Evidently, in spite of Judge Meyer’s stated grave concerns about Jois Foundation’s mission to promote Ashtanga yoga to public school children and Ashtanga devotee Jen Brown’s transparent conflict of interest as a Jois Foundation employee and EUSD yoga teacher, these red flags were not enough to cause Judge Meyer to find ‘excessive government entanglement with religion’ and suspend the religious yoga program,” the law center said.

The school’s yoga teachings are for children in kindergarten through grade six.

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2014/05/school-scorched-for-having-kids-bow-to-sun-god/#TAQK4jcFkYguaZ0J.99
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« Reply #15 on: May 23, 2015, 06:49:24 pm »

The dark side of meditation and mindfulness: Treatment can trigger mania, depression and psychosis, new book claims

    Theory is that techniques help relieve stress and live for the moment
    But 60% of us have apparently suffered at least one negative side effect
    Experts: Shortage of rigorous statistical studies into the negative effects of meditation is a 'scandal'


Meditation and mindfulness is promoted by celebrities including Gwyneth Paltrow and Russell Brand, who boast of its power to help people put stress out of their minds and live for the moment.

But the treatment can itself trigger mania, depression, hallucinations and psychosis, psychological studies in the UK and US have found.

The practice is part of a growing movement based on ancient Eastern traditions of meditation.

However, 60 per cent of people who had been on a meditation retreat had suffered at least one negative side effect, including panic, depression and confusion, a study in the US found.

And one in 14 of them suffered ‘profoundly adverse effects’, according to Miguel Farias, head of the brain, belief and behaviour research group at Coventry University and Catherine Wikholm, a researcher in clinical psychology at the University of Surrey.

The shortage of rigorous statistical studies into the negative effects of meditation was a ‘scandal’, Dr Farias told The Times.

He said: ‘The assumption of the majority of both TM [transcendental meditation] and mindfulness researchers is that meditation can only do one good.

‘This shows a rather narrow-minded view. How can a technique that allows you to look within and change your perception or reality of yourself be without potential adverse effects?

‘The answer is that it can’t, and all meditation studies should assess not only positive but negative effects.’

The British study involved measuring effect of yoga and meditation on prisoners, and its findings were published yesterday in the psychologists’ book, The Buddha Pill: Can Meditation Change You?.

Inmates at seven prisons in the Midlands took 90-minute classes once a week and completed tests to measure their higher cognitive functions in a ten week randomised control trial.

The prisoners’ moods improved, and their stress and psychological distress reduced - but they were found to be just as aggressive before the mindfulness techniques.

Ms Wikholm told The Times: ‘It is hard to have a balanced view when the media is full of articles attesting to the benefits of meditation and mindfulness.

‘We need to be aware that reports of benefits are often inflated ... whereas studies that do not discover significant benefits rarely pick up media interest, and negative effects are seldom talked about.’

But a study published last month in The Lancet claimed that mindfulness meditation practice could be as effective as modern drugs at beating depression.

Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) led to similar outcomes as antidepressants when treating the mental disorder.

The guiding principle of mindfulness is to live more ‘in the moment’, spending less time going over past stresses and worrying about future problems.

It is a secular practice that is said to help people recognise and overcome negative thoughts while noticing small pleasures.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3092572/The-dark-meditation-mindfulness-Treatment-trigger-mania-depression-psychosis-new-book-claims.html#ixzz3b0bX4or8

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« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2017, 06:05:05 pm »

Church Bans 'Non-Christian' Yoga for Focus on Oneself Instead of God; Some Threaten Boycott

An Anglican church in Wales might face boycott from some in the community after it banned "non-Christian" yoga from the premises.
There is no such thing as "christian yoga" the very concept of yoga is to yoke yourself the Brahma, a hindu demon idol

St. David's Church in Ceredigion decided not to allow yoga as part of its community center offerings, concerned that the practice that originated in India "might be seen to be in conflict with Christian values and belief," according to The Telegraph.

Some have apparently warned that yoga philosophy "teaches participants to focus on oneself, instead of on the one true God."

A Church in Wales spokesman clarified some of the church's rules:

"There is no problem to have alcohol in the building, but alcohol is not to be sold. Pilates is allowed, but not yoga. Also no activity of non-Christian activity."

Some locals have said that they will protest the Parochial Church Council over the decision, however, with one resident writing, "I and no doubt some Blaenporth residents are not at all happy with the view the church has on community activities like yoga, tai chi, taekwondo, cash prize bingo and the like. It is supposed to be a community affair where old and young can enjoy a better quality of life."

The resident continued, "I, for one, will not be dictated to as to what activity events are open to me. Therefore, I will not be visiting this establishment for recreational enjoyment until a fair and non-bias community center is built."

Another local who asked not to be named said that the church has been "tightening its grip" on what activities it allows.

"I think the Church sees the community center as a way of keeping the church going, but they are going against what residents want. With the best will in the world it will not be a proper community center — it cannot be."

Practicing yoga has long been a debate among Christians. Last month, a Roman Catholic school in Kansas decided to change its yoga class name to "lifestyle fitness," looking to distance itself from the practice's Hindu roots.

Benedictine College Communications Director Steve Johnson told The Christian Post at the time:

"The classes have always only included the physical aspects of yoga," noting that the course was a "single one-hour (half semester) class in our Health, Wellness & Exercise Science Department which gives students the benefit of the physical fitness aspects of yoga."

"We tell [critics] that the new name eliminates confusion about course content and best comports with what Pope Francis and the Chancellor of our Archdiocese have said. We greatly appreciate the cooperation we have received from those involved."

The Kansas City Star had previously reported that concerns from multiple sources had arisen over the yoga classes.

"Complaints ... began to come in from alumni, students, faculty and some administrators who argued that as a Hindu practice, yoga was not in keeping with Catholic-based education," the Star reported.

http://www.christianpost.com/news/church-bans-non-christian-yoga-for-focus-on-oneself-instead-of-god-some-threaten-boycott-183279/
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« Reply #17 on: May 29, 2017, 05:13:09 pm »

Since election, yoga rises off the mat to take on Donald Trump

President Trump’s election and the political cacophony that followed are driving waves of people to yoga and meditation, seeking a respite from the roller-coaster ride but also trying to recharge and build energy for a political pushback.

Yoga and mediation coaches say they are seeing increased enrollment and fewer dropouts from the annual "New Year's resolution" wave of signups. Part of this is stress relief — the American Psychological Association reports that stress nationwide is on the rise for the first time in 10 years.

But part of it is also meditation as resistance: Liberals see yoga as a place to reflect and recharge batteries for the political fights outside.

“This last election especially felt so tumultuous and so dividing — like there was so much angst and anger on both sides,” said Kristin McGee, celebrity yoga instructor and author of a beginner's guide called Chair Yoga. “The whole idea of yoga is to unite or to come together and to create a community. ... people are trying to find a way to come together, to try to find what is it that makes them feel connected and centered.”

Since the election, McGee said, “more and more people are coming to classes, more people are emailing me and asking me about how they can get started or asking me for private sessions.”

It is hard to find meaningful numbers on the post-election growth of yoga and meditation, in part because both fields have seen a dramatic increase in U.S. participation over the past decade. A joint study between the Yoga Journal and the Yoga Alliance found the number of U.S. yoga practitioners increased from 20 million in 2012 to 36 million in 2016, with about 72% of the participants being women.

But practitioners say the rise of Trump has clearly set a new tone for many yoga practitioners.

David Romanelli, a Los Angeles-based author and meditation teacher, said he began a program of daily meditations for a group of about 50 clients right around the time of Trump’s inauguration. “Usually you see a lot of attrition — that has not been the case this year. People have stuck to it.”

Julie Campistron, CEO of the meditation app Stop, Breathe & Think, saw the same phenomenon.

Campistron’s app asks users to begin their meditation by choosing words to describe their feelings, and the two days after the election “were the lowest emotional state we've had in the history of the app, over 30% lower than the year's average.” Users chose words like “disappointed,” “powerless” and “pessimistic” nearly three times more often than they had a week before the election.

She says the emotions being reported now have returned mostly to their average level, but the users have shown an unusual persistence. “In our industry in general we see a big increase at the beginning of the year because it is kind of the ‘new year, new you,' ” she said. “Usually we see a decrease in March and April, but this year has kept pretty steady. People are sticking with it.”

Romanelli says the political climate has a lot to do with this: “If you are not for Trump, it seems like it is the worst time in history. You need mindfulness more than ever if you think the world is not in your favor.”

Clearly, Americans are feeling more stress and politics is part of it. The American Psychological Association reported in May that 26% of U.S. workers felt stressed out by political discussions at work, up from 17% in the same survey last September. APA concluded in a January survey that overall U.S. stress levels, which have been in general decline since 2007, saw their first statistically significant increase in 10 years.

Kelly Colln , a certified yoga therapist and owner of KC Yoga Center in Kansas City, Mo., said her clients span the political spectrum but many have been "shocked at the hate and vitriol in the world." Colln said she does not address politics at all in her studio, but there is still a social impact. "How do we heal our nation? One yogi at a time," she said. "We work towards finding the commonalities in each other." She also said that yoga helps relieve the stress and pain that make people treat each other badly.

For liberals, yoga has been part retreat, part organizing strategy. After the election, “yoga studios in Washington, D.C., turned into emotional trauma wards,” said Hari-kirtana das, a yoga instructor and author of a new book on the spiritual basis of yoga called In Search of the Highest Truth. Das says the shock to the mostly liberal yoga clientele is driving a change in the training studios offer. “There has been a big uptick in the demand for mediation and meditative yoga as opposed very active energizing yoga” which was more popular two years ago, he said. People “need to find a tranquil space within themselves in order to feel protected from a very antagonistic atmosphere that has been created by this administration.”

Yoga is at its core an inward-looking practice of self-control, aiming to block out distraction and focus on your breathing. But many practitioners are now looking to yoga as part of their political activism.

At a yoga festival in D.C. last weekend, Dema Al-Kakhan said yoga is both a way to detach from the “chaos around you” and a path to activism. “When you work on yourself and you are empowering yourself, you are able to fill your cup so you are able to go out into the external world and make change. You can’t serve your community from an empty cup and low battery.”

Yoga and mediation “were already on the rise but this election really kicked it in to gear,” said Mali Jane, co-founder of the AM Yoga studio in Grand Rapids, Mich. The studio offered free yoga and meditation classes for three days after the election and “every class was packed,” said her partner Ashley Yost. “We called it an election decompression.”

Yost said the studio’s members came for relief from the outside chaos but they have begun pushing for more direct political action — through yoga. “We’re starting to do more classes outside of studio to help out” with yoga events that become fundraisers for organizations. For instance, in February AM Yoga held a charity yoga event in a local church to raise money for Planned Parenthood.

"The election has definitely catalyzed a shift in the practice,” said Kerri Kelly, founder of a group called CTZNWELL that urges yoga, meditation and other “wellness” practitioners to fight for policies that “ensure everyone is well."

"People are discovering their practice not only as a way to better engage with their bodies and minds, but with each another and the world," she said. Kelly spent Memorial Day weekend in North Carolina helping to lead a workshop called embRACE, designed to teach community organizers, yoga trainers, social workers and others how to use their yoga practice as a tool for combating racism and social injustice.

America has long struggled with issues of race and inequality, Kelly said, and "communities of wellness, communities of yoga have had the privilege of existing outside of those conversations.” But now, "that privilege no longer exists," she said. "Who we are as a country has come to the surface and we have no choice but to confront it.”

Sean Hoess runs a group called Wanderlust that organizes yoga and meditation festivals around the county, often a combination of a 5k run, yoga classes and meditation sessions. “A mindful triathalon,” he calls it.

“Regardless of your political persuasion, you are feeling angst and worry and uncertainty and you are frustrated and probably alienated from your fellow man or women. You feel like half the country is against you,” he said. This year, his group’s marketing hashtag is #cometogether. “It is really intend to be a nonpartisan call to relax and come together around comity and these mindful strategies.”

Hoess says his group has seen growth in attendance this year in part because people are seeking “a respite from the craziness,” but also “they are also looking to find a sense of renewed faith that people are basically good.” He says they have generally remained apolitical, and “we felt a need to tread much more lightly in the past.” But now some of his instructors have increased their directly political messages because “the audience is pushing us to take a stand on certain things.”

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/05/29/donadl-trump-may-be-driving-a-yoga-transformation-liberal/102159616/
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