Bishop Calls To Ban Yoga From Catholic Schools - 'Not of Christian Origin'
Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan quotes Pope Francis to back up claims
An Irish Bishop has written to Catholic schools demanding they stop practicing yoga and claiming it is 'not of Christian origin.'
Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan wrote to teachers, principals, and staff members in Waterford City and County, Ireland, on October 10.
In the letter he said:
"Yoga is not of Christian origin and is not suitable for our parish school setting and especially not during religious education time."
"I have been asked by several people to say a word on yoga and mindfulness. My question is, ‘Will they bring us closer to God or replace him?"
The Bishop insisted that Christian Mindfulness is 'meditation on Christ,' which rids the mind of 'everything unnecessary' in order to become 'aware of the presence and love of Christ.'
Cullinan also quoted Pope Francis, who said yoga is 'not capable of opening our hearts up to God.'
He echoed Pope Francis's speech in 2015, saying the people can "take a million courses in spirituality," but this activity "will never be able to give you freedom."
Yoga instructor John Stokes hit back, arguing the practice of yoga, meditation, and mindfulness should be 'embraced' in 'an age where children are really suffering from anxiety and stress.'
Seed and Blossoms yoga wrote on Facebook:
'There is no dogma taught in our classes and Yoga in it’s the truest sense is a movement and breath awareness practice for health and wellbeing.'
According to a statement to the Irish Times, the said schools 'are best placed' to make the decisions about how the subjects are taught, taking into consideration the 'school culture, ethos, and needs of the pupils.'
Last year, the Vatican’s official exorcist spoke out in condemnation of yoga and fantasy novels, branding them as "Satanic acts" that lead to "demonic possession," with those who commit such "grave sins" going "straight to hell."
Father Cesare Truqui has warned that the Catholic Church has seen a recent spike in global reports of people becoming possessed by demons.
According to Truqui, the reason for the sudden uptick is the rise in popularity of pastimes such as watching Harry Potter movies and practicing Vinyāsa, or yoga.
Professor Giuseppe Ferrari, who met in Rome where Catholic authorities and delegates discussed how to deal with this alleged demonic possession crisis, says that the Vatican has declared that shows that “glorify wizards.” Activities such as yoga, “summon Satanic spirits.”