Since when is anything, much less a spiritual practice, for everyone?
Yet mainstream culture and teachers of Yoga tell us that this “Yoga” thing is for everyone.
Is Yoga for everyone?
What kind of word is that?
Its not English.
Where does it come from?
What does it mean?
Are all these people really putting so much emphasis on stretching?
And since when in English speaking countries is stretching called 'Yoga'?
(I thought the English word was stretching.)
Can you trust that the dime-a-dozen 'certified' kindly Yoga Teacher at your local gym really knows what she/he’s talking about when it comes to being a teacher of this thing called Yoga?
Will you learn what Yoga really is in your average Yoga class in your average studio where you have actual people calling themselves teachers, experts, of an ancient and complex mystic practice?
Sometimes I think of it from another angle:
What if you went to a Christian church service, would you expect to hear about Christianity?
Would you expect to hear from the bible?
Even with special focus on the New Testament?
Would you need to hear from the bible for proper context?
Would you also need the direct, unbiased, unedited instruction which the guru, in this case, Jesus, standardized himself?
Would you expect to be put through the motions of ritual acknowledgments that many Christian denominations make toward their deity?
Or would you expect to go to a Christian event and only experience one single, redundant aspect of the religion?
What if when you went to the church the only thing you did was perform the physical activity of genuflection, the dropping to one knee while making the sign of the cross in the direction of the tabernacle….and then you left?
And that's all you ever did.
Do you think, based on your experience of and even mastery of genuflection, that you now understand Christianity?
That you are now, based on genuflection, practicing Christianity?
Even, that you now can be a teacher of Christianity because you are a really good genuflector?
I wonder why it is that Yoga is singled out as being for everyone?
Yoga for diabetes,
Yoga for the Obese,
Yoga for arthritis,
Yoga for the Young and Old;
Why would any one religious discipline be for everyone?
Especially one with such advanced requirements as Yoga's?
History shows no evidence that one religion fits all.
Is it because the word Yoga is so grossly misused even by those who proclaim to be teachers of it that we all have a degraded view of its excellence and sanctity?
Yoga is a religion.
Before taking up an argument that Yoga is not religious, look up the definition of religion.
Just because Yoga has to be taken on individually and its expectations are more than just showing up for church and proclaiming oneself saved by some entity, does not, by definition, disqualify it from being a religion.
It is not organizational but still religious.
Yoga is a word that should always be used with a capital Y when it is being taught as a class by a teacher.
Because it is a proper tradition, standardized, recorded, scrutinized for centuries, tested, tried and true. It is a super-religious, super-natural undertaking that causes one to make extreme adjustments to natural desires, drives, diet, expectations, habits, social dealings, everything you can think of.
It’s not a damn stretch class for everyone.
Anyone who teaches it as such should be held accountable for spreading dis-information or no information….while taking on the sacred mantle of teacher of a holy practice.
It may seem extreme to some, but it's really not.
I ask you to please don’t support a stretch class that misuses the word Yoga in order to gain monetary benefit from the exploitation of a spiritual practice.
Demand that your Yoga teacher answer real questions about Yoga. The religious aspect, not the stretches, anyone can do that.
Not everyone can understand and apply the super subtle practices and contemplation's Yoga requires us to pay such special attention to…all for the sake of our future incarnations and eventual liberation….much less teach others about it.
I've written things like this before. This time I will not be responding to comments about how ‘students have to start somewhere' and that 'maybe some people are not ready to hear about the 8 limbs, or the Bhagavad Gita or the Hatha Yoga Pradipika’.
If they are not ready then they are not ready, there is nothing wrong with that.
We can’t go around making it seem like there’s something wrong with people if they aren’t doing Yoga.
Let’s not continue to sell people a bill of goods that they are doing something that they aren’t.
Let’s give them support with proper information on Yoga and allow them to decide for themselves whether or not they are interested in Yoga.
Not stretching. Yoga.
It’s not a half ass program.
Even though people break it up into the pieces so as to not have to address or teach the much more advanced stages, I have not personally found that Yoga can be broken in anyway….and still be Yoga.
If it’s for Yoga goals it’s for Yoga goals.
If it’s for other goals it’s for other goals.
Yoga's goals are very specific.
You know them if you study our scriptures.
It’s good to keep things straight.
When we get a chance to hammer something down in this creation, it’s good.
This world is complex enough.