Yoga Belongs to No Religion, Indian Guru tells US Pastor

Agra, Oct 21 (IANS) Yoga does not belong to any particular religion, says yoga guru and college principal Father John Ferreira in response to a US pastor labelling the ancient healing and fitness regime "demonic" and an agent of Hinduism.

"Should Christians stay away from yoga because of its demonic roots? Totally. Yoga is demonic. If you just sign up for a little yoga class, you're signing up for a little demon class," pastor of the Mars Hill Church in the US, Mark Driscoll, had said last week.

Ferreira, the principal of St. Peter's College in Agra, one of India's oldest educational institutions, who has been teaching yoga to thousands of students every day for past several years, disagreed and said many people were benefiting.

"Jesus Christ was the greatest yogi. Only a yogi can make supreme sacrifice as Jesus made. Yoga does not belong to any particular religion. It is a universal science being practiced in various forms by people all over. Even the sound 'Om' is universal, just as the gayatri mantra. Yoga can only make you good Christians."

"We cannot remain quiet," Ferreira added.

Yogic sciences have contemporary relevance and people were getting benefits from it, he said.

"Only a supreme yogi could bear the extreme pain as Jesus Christ did when crucified. He had total control over his self and he always chose to forgive the sinners. Similarly Mahatma Gandhi was a maha (great) yogi," he explained.


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Title: Yoga Belongs to No Religion, Indian Guru tells US Pastor

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