OZARK, MO (WCMH) – The pastor of a Missouri megachurch is warning Christians to avoid yoga because of ‘demonic roots’ in Hinduism.
James River Church pastor John Lindell shared the message in a sermon just before Halloween, according to the Kansas City Star. Lindell suggested the poses performed during yoga meditation opens the mind to demonic influences.
“Yoga positions were not designed by your local fitness instructor. They were designed, they were created, with demonic intent to open you up to demonic power, because Hinduism is demonic. Every false religion is demonic,” said Lindell. “Hinduism is not a mild, gentle, pacifist religion. Anyone who says that has not visited India. Neither is Buddhism. We may have a sanitized view of it in our Western culture, but it is not pacifist. It is demonic. It is idol worship.”
A copy of the entire sermon was posted to YouTube.
The Springfield News-Leader talked to Missouri yoga instructors, who called the message ‘ignorant’ and divisive.
“Yoga transcends religion,” said Reggie Harris. “Yoga brings people together in a heart of unity and love. You’re teaching people to hate something that may help them physically, emotionally, spiritually.”