Yoga in schools latest target in the religion vs. State debate in America.
It seems strange that anyone is still having these debates but they are becoming more and more common in America where religious freedom seems to be getting confused with a Christian only agenda, along with the Creationists who have been changing school curriculums to teach the biblical version of how we got here instead of the scientific version.
Whilst we certainly don't believe in banning Christianity and tolerate all beliefs as long as they tolerate everyone else's belief systems, this increasingly narrow minded approach by religious types seems to contravene their own prophets. We are sure Jesus himself would have been above this kind of narrow mindedness.
In California parents are concerned yoga taught in schools has ties to the religion of Hinduism.
Yoga is the new targeted subject in the Religion vs. State debate which has remained strong despite a legal separation of the two, decades ago. A group of 60 Southern California parents have started a movement to remove yoga from a schoolâs curriculum based on the assertion that yoga has ties to Hinduism. The district under fire is the Encinitas Union School District, which uses taxpayerâs dollars to fund the yoga classes as well as the classes in regular rotation. Is yoga in schools related to religious belief?
âThereâs a deep concern that the Encinitas Union School District is using taxpayer resources to promote Ashtanga yoga and Hinduism, a religion system of beliefs and practices,â the parentsâ attorney, Dean Broyles, told the North County Times.
Yoga in schools â a constitutional issue?
However, while the concerned parents have launched an initiative to cease the yoga classes, some experts feel the claims are unfounded, and that yoga in schools may promote spirituality as well as good overall health, while not being tied to one specific religion.
Currently, the Encinitas Union School District has been given a $500,000 grant from an Ashtanga Yoga Institute, and the schoolsâ superintendent says he has no plans to stop the classes. Instead, the districtâs program will be evaluated by the University of Virginia and University of San Diego for potential benefits. The plan for the study was outlined in a letter sent to the districtâs parents.
Supporters of yoga in school claim it is a mainstream method of physical activity without any specific religious ties.
So who is right or wrong here? Is yoga brian washing the youth against god? Shall we ban team sports like rugby on the playing fields of England because it preparing the young for war?