Yoga is not Catholic

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God is the creator of all. Jesus is homoousious with the Father.  He is one in being with the Father and with the Holy Spirit.  We are created by God. We are creatures and God is the creator. When we pray, we pray in a relational way. God is other than man. We retain our identity, so much so that the day we die on the last day of judgment the body will rise and will be reunited to the soul for all eternity. We will not lose our identity. God created us good and it is what we do that is good or bad.

We have a "tool box" of talents and gifts to use for the glory and praise of God. Eastern religion denies the individuality of every human being and places salvation not in Jesus the Christ but in the individuals efforts.

A practice that takes Jesus out, it is not Christian, and Yoga takes Jesus out of what it calls meditation.  We need to understand that only through Christ there is salvation. Ours is a Christ centered prayer, not a self-centered prayer.

Read the debates of the Early Church Fathers.  E.g. The Council of Nicea, of Constantinople, of Ephesus, of Chalcedon. The first ecumenical councils had to do with Jesus, with his divine and human nature.  

[John 3:16] For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.

[John 3:17] For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.

[John 3:18] Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.

[John 3:19] And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil.

[John 3:20] For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed.

[John 3:21] But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.


Do not be deceived by Yoga practices that search for new revelations, like the gnostic did.  Do not walk away from Christianity in search of better techniques.  The way to the Father is Jesus. Keep Jesus in Christianity.

Nostrae Aetate said that in every religion there is an element of truth but it did not say that every religion is truth.  The truth is in Jesus Christ.  We respect all religions and their right to exist, but it does not mean that we deny our own.  We cannot deny Jesus Christ. We have the full revelation of God is Jesus Christ. Every human being longs for God and left alone will search for God in its own way.  The search is over for Christians.  Christ is the full revelation of God.  We do not need to search any further.

As Catholics, we have it even sweeter.  The holy Eucharist is the real body and blood of Christ and Eastern meditation should be replaced by Eucharistic adoration.  Instead of moving in, we need to move out in adoration of real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.

Marta Alves




Informational Bibliography

Click on the underlined title and it will take you to the source of the hyperlink.

 Pontifical Council for Culture and Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue,
 Jesus Christ The Bearer of the Water of Life. A Christian Reflection on the New Age,

Vatican City, 2003.


Carrera, Archbishop Norberto Rivera.
“A Call to Vigilance -Pastoral Instruction on New Age”  Mexico City, Mexico. January 7, 1996. in the August/September 1996 Issue of Catholic International.  (     

Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, “Declaration 'Dominus Iesus' on the Unicity and Salvific Universality of Jesus Christ and the Church.”  The Vatican, Sept. 2000. (

Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, “Instruction on the Ecclesial Vocation of the  Theologian.” The Vatican . May 24, 1990 (

Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, “Letter for the Bishops of the Catholic Church on            Some Aspects of Christian Meditation” The Vatican October 15, 1989. (

Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, “Notification Concerning the Writings of Fr.       Anthony DeMello, S.J.” Vatican Information Service, August 22, 1998. (

Dreher, Rev. John D.  “The Danger of Centering Prayer.”

Gessy, Rev. Lawrence J. “The Basic Conflicts between Mahrishi and Christianity”  Today’s      Destructive Cults and Movements,  Our Sunday Visitor:Huntington, IN. (

Gormley, William J., C.M., S.T.L.  Medical Hypnosis, Historical Introduction to Its Morality in       the Light of Papal, Theological and Medical Teaching – A Dissertation.  The Catholic    University of America Press:Washington, D.C. (1961)

Hardon, Fr. John A. S.J“Why is Yoga incompatible with Catholicism?  - Ask Father Hardon”     The Catholic Faith  4, no. 2.  Ignatius Press: San Francisco, CA. (March/April 1998)

Notra Aetate - Vatican II’s Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions The Vatican  (1965). (

Pontifical Council for Culture and Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, Jesus Christ The Bearer of the Water of Life. A Christian Reflection on the New Age, Vatican City, 2003. (

St. Augustine, De Civitate Dei (The City of God)

The New American Bible  at

Tweed, Thomas A. and Prothero, Stephen A.  Asian Religions in America: A Documentary   History,  Oxford University Press, 1999.


Compiled by Marta Alves- LEAP OF FAITH –




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A Christian reflection on the “New Age”


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