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California school sued over yoga as religion


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Poll: Yoga in schools (38 member(s) have cast votes)

Should yoga be allowed in schools?

  1. Yes (29 votes [76.32%])

    Percentage of vote: 76.32%

  2. No (6 votes [15.79%])

    Percentage of vote: 15.79%

  3. Obligatory others (3 votes [7.89%])

    Percentage of vote: 7.89%

Do you practice mindfulness?

  1. Yes (19 votes [50.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 50.00%

  2. No (5 votes [13.16%])

    Percentage of vote: 13.16%

  3. What is mindfulness? (14 votes [36.84%])

    Percentage of vote: 36.84%

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#16    QuiteContrary

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:24 PM

I do not look at it as a "religious" question at all. I have other concerns.
I am not saying it is wrong, but I do have questions. Schools are underwater financially, illiterate kids graduate and we are far from the top in math and sciences.
Where do specialty classes  fit it?
Where do  special instructors' salaries fit it?
How much do schools need to offer kids outside of academics?
What are schools?
How unequal should schools be in what they can afford to offer their students?
Is this meant first for the kids or just a way to draw residents into their districts to get more tax money?
Why not offer a lot of other good and well-intentioned yet non academic classes? Nutrition and cooking and physiology and ...
Will this open the flood gates for "best schools" widening the gap between the haves and have nots?
Every school can offer math, not every school can offer specialty classes to entice tax paying parents.
How will these attractive offerings affect academics?
Will core requirements have to suffer in order for students to fit in popular electives?

Edited by QuiteContrary, 02 July 2013 - 08:31 PM.

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But I like to hear the accounts, read the books, watch the shows, discuss and argue about the phenomenon.

#17    JMPD1

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:31 PM

You ask very pertinent and important questions QC, my response is that it would be up to the school boards and districts to figure out whether or not they can do this.  But they should at least be allowed to consider offering it.   And, from the looks of things, those opposed to it are throwing up a religious smoke screen to cloud the issue.

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#18    Sherapy

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:38 PM

View PostJMPD1, on 02 July 2013 - 08:21 PM, said:

In my town I see examples of the effects of poor diet and sedentary lifestyles every day.  Kids under the age of 12 that are already morbidly obese or damn close to it.  Young adults under the age of thirty who are out of shape, filled with a vibrant lack of energy or enthusiaism, with bellies that would make a professional barfly envious.

ANYTHING that promotes a healthier lifestyle should be encouraged whether it be baseball, gymnastics, or yoga.

I agree, as a parent  myself I think exercise should be a part of a kids daily life, it really is an investment in their future health. In California it is mandated that a kid get at least 40 minutes a day of activity.




#19    ChloeB

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:46 PM

View PostMichelle, on 02 July 2013 - 07:41 PM, said:

Leave it to you to find that angle. :P

I'm just being fair, woman!!  The family suing is Christian says the article, and I'm sure they're kid isn't forced to do yoga so I wouldn't be surprised if it's a, not fair to us we can't have our religion in school so we're going to make a fuss over the downward dog being some spooky demonic Hindu ritual.  They run around here with bumper stickers griping about God not being in school.  If you're going to let one, you have to let them all.

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#20    JMPD1

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:47 PM

If some of the kids here tried that, they'd have to open a pediatric coronary unit.  They'd be dropping like flies.  And if anyone thinks I'm being humorous, I ain't.  It is a sad, sad state of affairs.

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#21    redhen

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:51 PM

It depends on how it's taught. I suspect that in a school setting, it's taught as a physical stretching exercise and for the relaxation response. You could do the same with Tai Chi, but both practices do have a religious foundation.


#22    ChloeB

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 08:57 PM

View Postredhen, on 02 July 2013 - 08:51 PM, said:

It depends on how it's taught. I suspect that in a school setting, it's taught as a physical stretching exercise and for the relaxation response. You could do the same with Tai Chi, but both practices do have a religious foundation.

They absolutely do, even if it's not practiced that way, they have grounds to contest it if they aren't going to allow any other religious practices in school.  There's plenty of other things they can do for physical fitness.  The problem isn't what kids do for exercise, it's that they do something.

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Love like you'll never be hurt,
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And live like it's heaven on earth.”
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#23    White Crane Feather

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 09:01 PM

View PostZaphod222, on 02 July 2013 - 06:04 PM, said:



Bit isnt the "mystic energy mumble jumble" the same that you get from Asian martial arts? Are the bible-thumpers also opposed to Kung Fu and Karate, not to mention Aikido?
Many martial arts schools do not teach that aspect to their students unless they have been around for a very long time. I teach meditation and mindfulness indirectly to avoid controversy. The three Rs are forbidden to be talked about with my employees between themselves and students. ( religion, race, & relationships) oh and politics.

In California everyone sues for everything and everything is illegal. The liberal mindset runs wild. I have tried to convince my wife to move several times.

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#24    redhen

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Posted 02 July 2013 - 11:17 PM

If they're going to prohibit physical exercises based on their ancient religious and philosophical origins, they'll have to get rid of cognitive behaviourial therapies and mindfulness based stress reduction.

"The construct of mindful awareness originated in earliest Buddhist documents but is neither religious nor esoteric in nature"

Let the slippery slope races begin.


#25    Jessica Christ

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 12:45 AM

Chemistry started off as alchemy.

Astronomy has its origins in astrology.

Both alchemy and astrology had magical and religious components.


#26    Ryu

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 01:16 AM

I addressed this on another site.

Since apparently the children are being taught "mudras" (did I spell it right?), chants and all sorts of irrelevant stuff then it should have absolutely NO place in schools. Religion, mysticism and fantasy has no place in a setting that is supposed to prepare children for the real world.

Peacefulness and calm of mind can be taught without the use of magical thinking, chakras and all sorts of mysticism.
Whatever happened to "recess" or basic gym class?


#27    redhen

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 02:14 AM

View PostRyu, on 03 July 2013 - 01:16 AM, said:

I addressed this on another site.

Since apparently the children are being taught "mudras" (did I spell it right?), chants and all sorts of irrelevant stuff then it should have absolutely NO place in schools.

Do you have a source for that?

From an AP story;

"The judge said parents who objected relied on personal opinions, some culled from Internet searches.

"It's almost like a trial by Wikipedia, which isn't what this court does," said Meyer, who took nearly two hours to explain a decision that explored yoga's Indian roots and philosophy.

The judge emphasized that the school district stripped classes of all cultural references, including the Sanskrit language. The lotus position was renamed the "crisscross applesauce" pose."


#28    xFelix

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 02:16 AM

Saying it depends how yoga is taught is what determines if it is a religion is the same as saying it depends on how Christianity is taught....

If no other religion is allowed, why do we allow yoga? Oh because a part of it is good for the body?

Reading is good for the mind, why not allow the Bible?
Faith is good for the body too, why not allow Quran?
While we're at it, spirituality has proven to alter people's moods.. Why not keep a school medium handy?

This is obviously religion gone too far. If we teach stretching and exercising, let's teach that. But sitting there and teaching a religion that includes stretching and exercising because we want to teach stretching and exercising is a bit far fetched. I'm glad this isn't in my area, quite frankly if they pulled that on me i'd show up the next day with pentagrams, and a full altar to the spirits. All I would say is "If Yoga is allowed, so is my religion, otherwise you're discriminating based on religious affiliation and I will file lawsuit".


PS-Stripping Yoga of names, poses, chants and such is really disrespectful and is unacceptable in itself. They're basically ripping off a religion and teaching it in whatever way they want to kids...

Edited by xFelix, 03 July 2013 - 02:20 AM.

My posts consist of my opinions, beliefs, and experiences, feel free to disagree in a respectful manner.

I have a right to my beleifs, just as you have a right to not agree with them.

So long as we respect each other's beliefs, we won't have a single problem.


#29    Ryu

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 11:44 AM

View Postredhen, on 03 July 2013 - 02:14 AM, said:

Do you have a source for that?

Sadly I cannot locate the article so..no, I cannot satisty your request.


View Postredhen, on 03 July 2013 - 02:14 AM, said:

. The lotus position was renamed the "crisscross applesauce" pose."

How adorable. Giving it a silly name name to appease those who object.
Again, whatever happened to recess or a gym class where kids are offered a variety of things to do for an hour?
Sadly we have become such a sensitive society that feels practically obligated to be offended at everything that it is in the interest of everyone that all forms of religion, fantasy and mysticism be kept out of the school systems.


#30    libstaK

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 11:53 AM

We are so precious these days.  I went to a catholic school for 3 years - we did yoga there as part of our religious studies, it was considered fair enough that we know something of other cultures and thoughts back in the 20th Century, now in the 21st, to protect "freedoms" we have to stomp out anything that could be construed as indoctrination into religious thinking or alternative cultures, bah humbug.

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