Bible Study Welcome in Schools. Yoga? Not So Much!

I’m a mom. I have three children. Today I want to talk about my middle son, who is in an preschool program, and my religion (which I might add, I practice extremely loosely.)

In the first couple weeks of this school year, my son came home talking about doing yogurt in class with Miss Jean. In reality, he was trying to tell me he was practicing yoga in school. As part of a relaxation and exercise portion of their day, the class, chock full of three-year-old’s and one very patient teacher had been practicing yoga.

Which I thought was great! Super! He liked it, obviously it was working for the teacher, and I would have never had an issue.

Then I came across an article about some families obejcting to yoga in classrooms on the site Religion Dispatches. I was shocked and confused. The debate itself was about separation of church and state. For me this is a hit or miss thing. I don’t mind if my kids are saying “Under God” in school in a Pledge of Allegiance, as long as they aren’t being forced to take bible study classes or learn the Ten Commandments. I’m cool with all that. When it comes to religion I would prefer they learn it in home, church and their own Sunday school classes.

But there are apparently some people out there who believe if their children are being introduced to yoga in school, they are automatically being indoctrinated into Hinduism. Yes, this is actually happening and it made my head spin.

A elementary school in Encinitas, California has been under fire for offering this class to its students. An online petition to pull the class from the school altogether has also started to make its way around the internet, despite the option for parents to “opt out” their child from the program.

The superintendent of the school was quoted in the New York Times saying:

“That’s why we have an opt-out clause … If your faith is such that you believe that simply by doing the gorilla pose, you’re invoking the Hindu gods, then by all means your child can be doing something else.”

Amen! If you think that by teaching some physical activity and peace to your children will make them run off and join a Hindu church, well by all means, opt your child out of the class. But there is no reason to demand the entire school pull it. Ever stop to think there are parents out there who want their children to participate in a yoga class? It’s been found that it can help young children calm themselves and be more focused when it comes to learning.

Can you think of what the world would be like if our children, the entire next generation was able to meditate and peacefully learn how to meditate?

The Dalai Lama said it perfectly:

Photo Credit: facebook.com/evolvefestival

Image via iStockphoto/Olga Zorina Courtnage

  • http://www.masteringmommybrain.com Dana

    WHAT?! Ugh….I think people sometimes just like to create controversy for the sake of controversy.
    My kids practice yoga in their school as well, and they loooooove it. Practicing flexibility, calmness, deep breaths, staying still….it all works SO well. I walked into the class when the kids were all listening and so focused. To be honest, I feel more sorry for these parents because their kids are missing out from a great experience.

  • http://www.amyabbottwrites.com Bernadine Spitzsnogel

    I don’t understand the headline; unless it is a private school, no Bible studies are allowed. I agree with Dana that is just seems foolish that the peaceful practice of yoga cannot be offered for small children, in our pressured world. But then I also think that a little of the Ten Commandments (which is from the Torah) and a little of the parables of Jesus wouldn’t hurt either.

  • http://www.jenniferpwilliams.com Jennifer

    I once sat through a sermon about how yoga is a sin because it encourages you to empty your mind, and apparently that allows Satan to come in and set up shop. This is why I can’t find a church to go to.

Black Lives Matter Oscars Social Justice
Social Justice Warrior Battle Fatigue: When Blacksplaining is Too Much
Barbie Fashionistas, photo courtesy of Mattel
The Casual Feminist: How Do You Take Your Barbie? Curvy, Tall or Petite?
#wheresrey, rey star wars, hasbro
#WheresRey: Finally, Here’s Where You’ll Find Your Jedi Princess
400.a-gift-id-like-to-return
Let’s Make a Deal!
24414814619_ff75538970_z
A Hillary Smear in the Making Brought to Us By MSNBC: TRANSCRIPTS!
Black History Month, reparations
For Black History Month, Let’s Talk Reparations
Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, real change in politics
Do You Really Want A Revolution, or Just Talk About One?
Black Lives Matter Oscars Social Justice
Social Justice Warrior Battle Fatigue: When Blacksplaining is Too Much
Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, real change in politics
Do You Really Want A Revolution, or Just Talk About One?
America Ferrera at MAKERS
For America, It’s a No Brainer Between Hillary and Cruz
Hillary Clinton in Iowa, Hillary Clinton criticized for style, media criticism of Hillary Clinton style
Bernie and Donald Can Shout. Hillary, Not So Much if You Believe the Media
Hillary Clinton Bernie Sanders
Bernie Sanders is More of the Same
Barbie Fashionistas, photo courtesy of Mattel
The Casual Feminist: How Do You Take Your Barbie? Curvy, Tall or Petite?
Senate_Women_2013
Women Senators Aren’t Afraid of the Snowpocalypse, But Their Male Counterparts Are
15812860637_0c333790ea_z
Candidates, Captions in Political Ads Please!
swimming
Five Reasons To Start Swimming in Adulthood
Paris attacks, Paris terrorism
Is Paris Burning?
Chinese government and women's reproductive rights, adopting Chinese girls, international adoption
Dear Xi Jinping, I Am Writing to You as an American Mom of a 19-Year-Old Chinese Daughter
First Lady Hillary Clinton in Inda in 1995
The Vital Voice of Hillary Clinton: Part 1
American tourists help Syrian refugees in Hungary
One Woman Making a Difference to Syrian Refugees
369.the-eyes-have-it1
The Eyes Have It!
Ashley Madison, Jared Fogle, sex, rape, sexual affairs
Ashley Madison vs. Jared Fogle: Rape, Sex and Hacking in America
women's viagra, Viagra, Flibanserin, sexual arousal, women's desire, sex after menopause
That “Little Pink Pill” Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up to Be
breast cancer, save the boobies, save second base, why is breast cancer awareness about sex
Campaigns to Save the “Boobies” and “Tatas” Do Women No Favors

Get our new weekly email
Broadly Speaking

featuring our best words for the week + an exclusive longread