The September 2018 issue of The American Legion magazine has a cover headline: “Warrior Pose—Veterans Find Healing Through Yoga.” The article states:
American Legion posts host yoga sessions for veterans grappling with PTSD. . . . After leaving the Marine Corps, Jeff Drake felt alone. He lacked a community. He felt angry and hostile. Drake’s demons raged for the next dozen years before he hit rock bottom. . . . Drake [sought] help for his post-traumatic stress disorder. In time, he found yoga—the “meds” that soothe his soul. . . . Now, Drake . . . engages in a 90- to 120-minute daily routine of breathing, prayer, mantras, and meditation. . . . Drake . . . traveled to India last summer to better understand [yoga].
The article explains that a nonprofit organization called VEToga, founded by a Marine Corps veteran, is now currently leading classes around the country for about 10,000 students.
In the last decade and a half, Yoga has exploded worldwide. Today, Yoga classes are being offered in health, military, all levels of education (including elementary), government (political), business, religious, and arts, media, and entertainment sectors of society. More recently, Yoga has crossed into the evangelical realm where an increasing number of women (and men) in evangelical churches are now doing Yoga, either in their own churches or in their communities.
While our hearts go out to veterans who are struggling with serious physical, mental, and emotional issues, what a tragedy that many are now turning to New Age practices such as Yoga and mindfulness, and what a further tragedy that so much of the church is joining them rather than offering them the only true lasting help through the person of Jesus Christ and His Word. We are certainly for veterans becoming healthy with good nutrition and exercise, but they will not find lasting peace and joy in their lives through Yoga or meditation. Only a relationship with Christ can provide that, and who better to be an example of that than Christians? But, unfortunately, so much of today’s evangelical church has grabbed hold of powerless substitutes in exchange for the real thing . . . as the world watches on.
Jesus said, in Matthew 5:16, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Our good works, according to Scripture, is that we believe on Him who died for our sins and conquered death in His resurrection. How can the world see our faith in God if we compromise it and hide that light under a load of worldly (not to mention spiritually dangerous) practices?
To Understand Yoga: