RENO, NV – According to a statement released by Reno-based Hindu leader Rajan Zed on June 6, “Hindus are disheartened over Church of Greece reportedly denouncing yoga, and branding it as incompatible” with Christianity.
The statement followed the announcement by The Holy Synod of the Church of Greece which pointed out that yoga had no place in the lives of their followers and completely incompatible with their faith tradition.
Zed said that “although introduced and nourished by Hinduism, yoga was a world heritage and liberation powerhouse to be utilized by all. One could still practice one’s respective faith and do yoga. Yoga would rather help one in achieving one’s spiritual goals in whatever religion/denomination one believed in. It was not at odds with any faith and rather made one spiritually healthier.”
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, urged Church of Greece Archbishop Ieronymos II to “rethink, revisit and reevaluate yoga as many of its devotees reportedly practiced yoga,” adding that “denying them the valuable opportunities the multi-beneficial yoga provided, would be clearly doing a disservice to them.”
Zed indicated that “yoga, referred as ‘a living fossil,’ was a mental and physical discipline, for everybody to share and benefit from, whose traces went back to around 2,000 BCE to Indus Valley civilization.”
“According to Patanjali who codified it in Yoga Sutra, yoga was a methodical effort to attain perfection, through the control of the different elements of human nature, physical and psychical,” Zed noted.
The statement also cited a report of U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which reported that “yoga is the most popular complementary health approach in the United States – used by 14.3% of the adult population, or 35.2 million people.”
According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, “yoga may help one to feel more relaxed, be more flexible, improve posture, breathe deeply, and get rid of stress. United Nations proclaimed June 21 as International Day of Yoga to raise awareness worldwide of its many benefits. Yoga was the repository of something basic in the human soul and psyche,” Zed added.