20 October 2008

hearing jude

Last week sometime I posted about the infrequency of my posting, largely due to many of the activities which have me running.  And the fact of the matter is that I'm a bit fatigued on a few levels, though not ready to complain about any of it.  It is thus no surprise that things like last week's end choose to happen.

And as some frustrating situations arose, I was tempted to act out of my fatigue and recess into the background.  Then during a time of prayer my mind was drawn to Jude, "Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that the Lord has once for all entrusted to us, his people.  For certain individuals whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you.  They are ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into a license of immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord" (3-4).

I will not comment on two of the situations, but will address the third.  I teach adjunct at the same college I attended for undergraduate (and have been closely tied to for many years).  I was informed last week that they will be offering yoga courses as part of the physical education department come spring.  This is a big let-down, and there is not much chance that I will be able to make a change to the situation (hence, my fatigue telling me it's not worth it).  But because I have spent numerous hours researching new religious movements such as New Age (along with Hinduism proper), I can not allow this to go unchallenged.

I am aware that some Christians believe that there is nothing wrong with yoga.  Yet I cite the constructive curmudgeon (and leading scholar in this field), Douglas Groothuis: "If it is really Christianity and it is really yoga, the two are incompatible because they represent two opposing worldviews."  Further, I do not believe that (given an accurate history of the practice of yoga) that it can be separated from its physical and spiritual attributes - the actual positioning found within yoga are designed within the realm of pantheistic monism; to bring one in proper alignment with the forces of the universe, allowing energies to flow through the body.

When sharing my concern with another faculty, he defended *Christianized yoga* as a real possibility and suggested that I was caught up in a mind-body dualism which didn't see the potential.  His running into a shabby tower made of philosophical terms did not sway me, for I assured him that it is because of my firm belief that everything is spiritual in the biblical mindset that practices such as yoga are dangerous to one's spiritual well-being.  And like Joe versus the volcano, he had no response to that.

So, because of the exhortation which is found in Jude (which I realize was not written with me and this specific situation in mind) I will delve into even more areas of engagement which I don't really have time for.  But I believe that the spiritual (and physical) well-being of many students is at stake, along with the spiritual climate of the campus.  Maybe nobody will listen, maybe somebody will.  It will be beyond my control.

Incidentally, here are a couple of good resources:

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