Doing the Downward Grizzly: Sarah Palin, Janine Turner Prove Christians Can Practice Yoga
This week, Bristol Palin posted a photo on Facebook of her little brother Trig learning how to do yoga with their mom, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. Like any picture that features the adorable Trig Palin, one can't help but smile. The activity they're engaged in however isn't something traditionally associated with all-American, conservative families. But a closer look shows us clearly that yoga isn't just for beatniks and tree huggers anymore.
During Sarah Palin's big Christmas book tour, an Arts & Culture reporter for the Minnesota Post was surprised to find out that Palin was a yoga enthusiast. Palin practices Bikram to be precise, and she's not a fly-by-nighter. In fact, during the long book tour she expressed her chagrin that she hadn't been able to hit the yoga mat in two weeks. It's part of her regimen.
A devout Christian like the Mama Grizzly herself does the downward dog and the camel pose. When it comes to Christians practicing yoga, she is not alone.
Actress and conservative talk host Janine Turner is also a yoga buff. She debunks the narrative that the practice is reserved for hippies and atheists. "Yoga is a form of exercise and it is a very good one because it mixes strength and stretching with meditation," Turner told Breitbart Sports. "It's a perfect combination because afterwards you have exercised both body and soul."
As for the true believers that still shy away, Turner has put a unique spin on things to help yoga newbies feel comfortable.
It's called Christoga.
"Many Christians reject yoga because they are worried about the traditional religious aspects that are associated with it," Turner said. "With Christoga, my friend and yoga instructor, Mary Cunningham and I kept the physical aspects of yoga but renamed the poses with Christian names, and as one holds the pose, I recite a Biblical scripture."
Yoga filled body. Christ filled soul.
"I like to take part in Christoga as often as possible," Turner said. "As a former dancer, my body craves the stretching aspects and my soul craves the scripture."
Some say yoga can simply never be Christian. Many worry about the spiritual deception that’s being taught at yoga classes across the country. After all, old school yoga postures are technically offered to Hindu gods. But like so many things it all depends on one's personal approach.
A strong Christian can surely stretch and exercise, while staying committed to Christ. Palin and Turner are two examples of Christian women who are benefiting from the physical aspects of an effective workout. They both walk the walk with Christ every day. The uptight among us may need to loosen up a little bit in body and in mind. It's only exercising at the end of the day. Some of us just may prefer saying 'Amen' instead of 'Namaste' at the completion of a routine.
Learn more about Christoga by visiting here.
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