uhhmm…ommm…and deceptive bends

American popular culture, true to form, has been able to commercialize and monetize Yoga; disengaging it from its Hindu spiritual roots and transforming it into a leisure past-time and hobby where it is placed on the rack or shelf, and faith is judged by sales per square foot in the commercial temple. But, its not all bad karma. However, the facile notion of attaining spiritual freedom through yoga is hardly linear. Yoga, a word whose root meaning is “yoke” as in yoke of labor is a bit perplexing, particularly in our current epoch of commodification of yogic philosophies and practices which are themselves marketed as a palliative for stress which plays on the individual sense of alienation. Similar to being in a relation but not being able to relate. Whether yoga can free the individual from the yoke of these classical contradictions and not offer merely superficial substitutes remains to be seen, at least in the Western context….

---So it’s not about nudity, it’s not just about selling something either, (don’t all yoga teachers “sell” their classes in a way?). It is something else that got my attention. That something else is the sexualization of the ads, the objectification of the body (almost always women’s bodies) which I fear can spill out into our practice and spill out into the sanctity of the yoga classroom. That can invade the sacred student-teacher relationship and get in the way of the transmission of the gift of yoga.---Read More:http://visualstreak.com/category/advertising/

The democratization of Yoga is also giving rise to an equally reactionary view that asserts, under the weight and  potential violence- “we can’t necessarily control our followers”- of the ubiquitous fatwa, that Muslims should be prohibited from the practice. At its essence, yoga respects no creed and requires no baggage in terms of a set of beliefs or faith from practitioners. Yet, politicizing yoga and accentuating the “other” appears to be the common currency…

---but pointing out that far too many unthinking people are falling victim to third hand notions of what they should feel guilty about, especially in the absense of any scriptural basis, is. People, you won’t go to hell if you say ‘Om’ and I’m not Mephistopheles.--- Read More:http://rahulbrown.wordpress.com/2005/09/01/chistian-yoga/

…An influential Malaysian royal has stepped into a controversy involving a religious edict by the country’s top Islamic body banning Muslims from practising yoga, a form of exercise rooted in Hinduism….In remarks come after Malaysia’s National Fatwa Council declared the practice of yoga prohibited, or haram, saying that it could be traced back to Hinduism and could erode the faith of Muslims.” The edict on yoga has angered many Muslims in Malaysia’s plural society who said they have been performing yoga for years without losing their faith….

---Let’s be fair here: commercializing yoga isn’t your fault. It’s Bikram Choudhury’s. While Paramahansa Yogananda is generally regarded as the ‘father of yoga in the West’ (and incidentally Bikram’s guru’s guru), Bikram is undoubtedly the pimp-daddy o.g. yogi makin’ dat dolla. Yet if Bikram in the Anakin-cum-Darth of yoga purity, then Shirley MacLaine is certainly his Darth Sidious as it was she, and not his guru Bishnu Ghosh, who convinced him to start charging the kind of ‘astralnomic’ fees that have allowed him to purchase his multiple Rolls-Royces and Bentleys. Now that Bikram has started to patent, trademark, and copyright elements and routines of yoga practice and litigate against violators, I would have to say that yoga in America is now offically, undoubtedly, inescapably commerical. Let’s not try and blame that on some wacky, prudish Christians.---Read More:http://rahulbrown.wordpress.com/2005/09/01/chistian-yoga/

However, Abdul Shukor Husin, the chairman of the fatwa council, was quoted in a local English daily on Sunday as saying that many Malaysian Muslims failed to understand the ultimate aim of yoga. “It combines physical movements, religious elements, chanting and worshipping for the purpose of achieving inner peace and ultimately to be one with God,” he told reporters when announcing the ruling, the New Straits Times reported. Read More:http://english.aljazeera.net/news/asia-pacific/2008/11/200811255355839719.html aaaa

Russell Wild:A touch of soul-scraping ambivalence? Perhaps. If so, our executive is far from alone. Throughout the yoga community, people are wondering whether the bustling business of yoga is good karma. Is it OK to make big money off a practice that has its roots in renunciation and asceticism? Is the commercialization of yoga messing with its very essence? And what's next for the yoga biz, now that we've already seen the marketing of yogatards, yoga shoes, yogi pillows (stuffed with buckwheat hulls), the $1,200 "tantric bedroom set" (for adults only) and a battery-operated, inflatable "Chi machine"? Read More:http://souljerky.com/articles/yoga_festival_puducherry_adver.html

or: …For starters, the very notion of having to de-Hindu yoga to make Christians feel better about it is rooted in the narrow-mindedness and guilt (and stupidity) which are commonly (and needlessly) bundled as part and parcel of Christian doctrine. People like present Pope Benedict XVI have warned that yoga “can degenerate into a cult of the body” whatever the hell that means, and urged people not to confuse the “pleasing sensations” of yoga with “spiritual well-being”, creating the impression that Ratzinger gives himself pleasing sensations in other ways– more spiritual ones of course. Others like Rabi Maharaj, a formerly confused Hindu who is now a freshly confused Christian, go a step further and publicly decry that yoga and meditation are evil and will land you in hell, if not turning you into an anti-Christ first. Read More:http://rahulbrown.wordpress.com/2005/09/01/chistian-yoga/


---The average yoga practitioner's yearly expenditure on all things yoga--instruction, mats, props, clothing, weekend workshops, books, CDs--comes to a ballpark $1,500, conservatively speaking. That amount times 18 million equals $27 billion. To put that into perspective, if the yoga business were consolidated, the resulting corporation (Yoga-Mart?) would be slightly larger tha

w Chemical, slightly smaller than Microsoft. That's big. And it's getting bigger. Mainstream retailers like J. Crew and Puma have been selling their own lines of yoga gear for some time now, and Nike is just introducing its first yoga shoe (the Kyoto, $55 retail). ---Read More:http://www.metroactive.com/papers/metro/06.12.03/yoga-0324.html

Rather, the experience of the practice itself creates a knowing that is absent untested belief and faith, while paradoxically also becoming the basis for faith that builds and accelerates the momentum of the practice. …Yet none of these things are the most disturbing aspect of all this. Ranking at the top of distressing elements is how Christian yoga and some quotes from the article, contrary to the spirit of yoga, only serve to divide us. Behind the confusion of what Christians understand to be Christianity and what Hindus understand to be Hinduism, there’s a common yogic experience of Oneness that both religions are built around ….

---It’s not that Jean Wharf hates yoga, exactly. It’s just that, well, you know, she doesn’t like “the industrialization of yoga.” Which is why, earlier this year, the 21-year-old was wearing an explicit button on her studded, black leather jacket that suggested something not very nice be done to the ancient Asian discipline, when she got into a tiff with transit police over an unpaid fare. ...After writing out a $175 ticket, the officer then ordered Ms. Wharf to remove her anti-yoga button, or ride somewhere else. She angrily refused, and Ms. Wharf was forcibly ejected from the premises....Ms. Wharf said she had worn the button “millions of times” on SkyTrain without previous incident. “Now I’m never going to take it off. I’m a big girl. I can dress myself....Read More:http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/british-columbia/rights-group-defends-womans-right-to-take-profane-position-on-yoga/article1974217/ image:http://www.yogadork.com/news/girl-wears-fck-yoga-pin-gets-kicked-off-train-rights-battle-ensues/

…The increasing popularity and practice of hatha yoga is one of the most practical tools that helps both Hindus and Christians (and anyone else who gives it a shot) break past the fog of silly religious beliefs and begin to taste the Oneness of humanity wherein we’re all brothers and sisters. No longer must one person hate or condemn another because of variations in traditions and cultures. Creating something like Christian yoga allows Christians to continue to “otherize” Hindus in a way that still leaves the door open for them to hate, condemn, or evangelize Hindus with the belief that they are heathens headed to hell in need of salvation. Read More:http://rahulbrown.wordpress.com/2005/09/01/chistian-yoga/

---Does style over substance equal mind over body? Is taffy a euphemism for something in Italian that I should know about? Can we transcend our candy-coated life with a superstring ribbonworld made entirely of yoga models and candy? The imagery doesn't suck. Yet it has more to do with the serene analgesia of ketamine hydrochloride than a daily practice of ashtanga yoga.---Read More:http://souljerky.com/articles/Ashtanga_Yoga_Center_Advertising.html


Read More:http://thegoodtenet.blogspot.com/2007/08/atheism-and-yoga.html

Related Posts

This entry was posted in Feature Article, Ideas/Opinion, Marketing/Advertising/Media, Miscellaneous and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>