JBU Employee: 'Yoga Has Its Roots In Worship Of Demonic Hindu Gods'

SILOAM SPRINGS, AR. --- Deborah Dana is listed on the John Brown University web site as a math specialist and a tutor coordinator.

She wrote an article called "Rethink Yoga."

It was published in the school's student run paper. The op-ed is gaining some attention.

Dana writes about yoga in the piece. She said the practice has "roots in the worship of demonic Hindu gods."

here for the entire article.

Dana also stated the benefits of yoga have 'hidden, demonic strings attached.'

We reached out to JBU for a response to the article.
Here is their response.

The Threefold Advocate is a student publication and operates with nearly complete autonomy and as such, opinions in the student newspaper do not represent official positions of the university.

We value free speech and encourage the exchange of ideas in a respectful fashion.

The student editors of that publication have seen the concerns of Mr. Zed and, on their own initiative, will invite him to write a response to appear in the same opinion section the piece in question ran.

JBU has no position on yoga. With regards to Hinduism, JBU is a Christian university, and our Statement of Faith can be found on our website at http://www.jbu.edu/hr/faith/ "

We also reached out to the Hindu Association of Northwest Arkansas. The president of HANWA, Sudhir Katke sent us a statement. 

"Regarding the opinion published on John Brown University’s “Three Fold Online, JBU’s Student Voice”, we recognize and appreciate the fact that in this great country, we all have freedom of speech. This right allows people to state their opinions, even when they are contradictory to our own.  However, the comments made in the article demonstrate intolerance and lack of understanding of the Hindu faith and its practices. Since other religions practice yoga as well, perhaps a broader inter-faith discussion would be appropriate.

The roots of Hinduism are in the belief that the universe is one family and that the purpose of all human beings is to realize the ultimate truth of supreme consciousness; that is, body, mind and spirit enjoined in perfect harmony. Yoga, which is a practice to unite the body, mind and spirit, helps individuals connect with the supreme and defines wellbeing for the individual and society.  

Many Americans have adopted Yoga because the concepts it supports are universal in nature.

Sudhir Katke

President, HANWA"

Rajan Zed is the president of the Universal Society of Hinduism. He spoke with us by phone today from Nevada. 

"The president, doctor Charles Pollard should apologize to the Hindu community. He should post that apology on the university website," said Zed.

Also, yoga instructors disagreed with this article. Cindee Joslin owns "Yoga Story" in Bentonville.

"Yoga is not a devil. It is a tool to bring you into something deeper of whatever you are when you start. It may have roots in Hinduism, but because I practice something that has its roots there does that mean I am worshiping other gods? To the contrary. I know my god, I know who I worship and yoga does not cause you anymore than reading a book or practicing meditation would cause you to worship," said Joslin.

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