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Yoga passes secularism test in US

MST

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WASHINGTON: Yoga enthusiasts in the US got a big boost this week when a California judge ruled that the practice which originated in India is now a ''distinctly American cultural phenomenon,'' while dismissing complaints from some parents that teaching it to school children amounted to ''an unconstitutional promotion of Eastern religions.''

Weeks of testimony from yoga practitioners and opponents, including live demonstration in courtroom of poses taught to children, came to a convoluted finale on Monday when Judge John Mayer agreed that yoga ''at its roots is religious,'' but pronounced that the kind introduced by a school district near San Diego, which was the subject of the litigation, passed the test of secularism. "A reasonable student would not objectively perceive that Encinitas School District yoga does advance or promote religion," he said.

Parents of some children had sued to stop the school district from teaching yoga maintaining it is a religious practice that surreptitiously promoted Hinduism. Funded with $533,000 from the K.Pattabhi Jois Foundation, which is backed by Jois acolytes, hedge-fund billionaire Paul Tudor Jones II and his wife Sonia, the school district introduced a three-year pilot yoga program in 2011, with twice a week classes in addition to regular physical education.

While some 30 families pulled their children out of the classes, saying teaching of yoga in schools blurred the line between church and state and "represents a serious breach of the public trust," many parents backed the program, which the school said was also aimed at curbing aggressive behavior and bullying. School authorities said in court that they had removed all religious elements from what was taught to the students, including the use of the word Namaste and substituting Sanskrit name of asanas with English ones. For instance, Padmasana, usually called lotus pose in English, became ''criss cross apple sauce'' in Americanese to appeal to children.

In fact, Judge Meyer, who had told the court early in the case that he himself had taken Bikram yoga classes, went so far as to observe that the yoga taught in Encinitas schools was no different from exercise programs like dodgeball. He was also irritated that some of the plaintiffs were not really informed about yoga as taught in the Encinitas schools and had simply got their information from dubious sources on the internet. ''It's almost like a trial by Wikipedia, which isn't what this court does,'' he observed.

The petitioners have said they will appeal against the court's ruling, but for now, yoga enthusiasts are celebrating the victory because it sets an important legal precedent for expanding yoga in school programs. In fact, some observers seemed pleased at the judge's seeming cultural appropriation of yoga while observing that it was as American as apple pie, noting that yoga came to the US more than a century ago with the arrival of the first Indian mystics and spiritual figures.

Paramahamsa Yogananda lived in the US in the 1920s, and is in fact, thought to be the first Indian pubic figure to be entertained at the White House in 1927 - by President Calvin Coolidge.

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Interesting. Not sure what to make of this. what do you guys think?

At a high level I think as long as they give proper credit to Indians for its evolution we shouldn't have any problem how they do it. Also how much benfit is lost by removing chanting or Hindu practice in Yoga. Esentially I don't really know since I don't do it. But would be interesting to get some thoughts from practitioners.
 

MST

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we dont need any credits, nobody gives italian credit for pizza ...
I will disagree. Everyone knows Pizzas are from Italy. And if they don't then they should.

Thats whats is moral. When ever you use someones work you give credit to them either through citations or through refrences.

I thought that part was pretty well understood.
 

Yeti

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Yoga is universal a friend of mine in Spain goes to classes every week its everywhere in the west now but they should never try to claim it from us! like they took our Swastika and twisted its meaning
 

third eye

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In exactly what state of India was yoga originated?
No existing state in particular.

Yoga is a commonly known generic term for the physical, mental, and spiritual practices or disciplines which originated in ancient India with a view to attain a state of permanent peace. Specifically, yoga is one of the six āstika ("orthodox") schools of Hindu philosophy.

Various traditions of yoga are found in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism.

Its too deep in time to try & narrow down to a region we now call a state.
 

MST

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Yoga is universal a friend of mine in Spain goes to classes every week its everywhere in the west now but they should never try to claim it from us! like they took our Swastika and twisted its meaning
True. There is a Yoga Center at every nukkad in SF Bay Area. All we want is that they credit the original creators. More like a Open Source License where you can use it and modify to your needs it but you have to give credit to the original creator.
 

RangerPK

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No existing state in particular.

Yoga is a commonly known generic term for the physical, mental, and spiritual practices or disciplines which originated in ancient India with a view to attain a state of permanent peace. Specifically, yoga is one of the six āstika ("orthodox") schools of Hindu philosophy.

Various traditions of yoga are found in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism.

Its too deep in time to try & narrow down to a region we now call a state.

I see. I guess for some reason it never really reached the region of Pakistan or at least never got popular here... Most people here are oblivious to what yoga is, and never have heard of it. Only educated people are familiar with the term, but that is mostly because of American pop culture and how it is promoted through television.


PS: You know when you watch American television, there is this one clichéd episode, there is a guy who goes through a phase in which he tries to make a superficial attempt to be "spiritual" and he picks up yogo. etc.
 

Biplab Bijay

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I know the reason. infact everybody including you also know the reasonn. If you dont mind, then only i can explain.

I see. I guess for some reason it never really reached the region of Pakistan or at least never got popular here... Most people here are oblivious to what yoga is, and never have heard of it. Only educated people are familiar with the term, but that is mostly because of American pop culture and how it is promoted through television.


PS: You know when you watch American television, there is this one clichéd episode, there is a guy who goes through a phase in which he tries to make a superficial attempt to be "spiritual" and he picks up yogo. etc.
 

Pakistanisage

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No existing state in particular.

Yoga is a commonly known generic term for the physical, mental, and spiritual practices or disciplines which originated in ancient India with a view to attain a state of permanent peace. Specifically, yoga is one of the six āstika ("orthodox") schools of Hindu philosophy.

Various traditions of yoga are found in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism.

Its too deep in time to try & narrow down to a region we now call a state.



Maybe YOGA originated in " Indus Valley Civilization", in which case it is Pakistani Product...:omghaha:
 

naveen mishra

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Maybe YOGA originated in " Indus Valley Civilization", in which case it is Pakistani Product...:omghaha:
its hardly matter bro weather it is develop in Pakistan or Indian............yoga practice is good for health......we should not mix with religious thing..................you can name it any thing............it is purely design for individual ...........to reach extreme level of self actualization or spirituality as well health body and brain.......every buddy must get benefit out of this
 

sankranti

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Congrats to yoga!:cheers:
Why not congrats to Hindu's for inventing Yoga and then distributing it for free all over the world ? :azn: ...........or are you only going to credit 'caste' to Hindus ?

Yoga is universal a friend of mine in Spain goes to classes every week its everywhere in the west now but they should never try to claim it from us! like they took our Swastika and twisted its meaning
Yoga's practice is now Universal but it origin still remains Hindu.

Calling it 'secular' means not giving credit to its hindu origin and roots. The Hindu philosophy that is part of Yoga.

West has taken the teachings of jesus and has twisted it into something evil. Hindu's are still here to defend yoga and swasthika.
 

Pakistanisage

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its hardly matter bro weather it is develop in Pakistan or Indian............yoga practice is good for health......we should not mix with religious thing..................you can name it any thing............it is purely design for individual ...........to reach extreme level of self actualization or spirituality as well health body and brain.......every buddy must get benefit out of this



I agree with you Mate, I benefit from it everyday....:D

And yes it does not matter to me either who developed this form of exercise, its benefits are universally accepted.
 

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