I just read this on the renegade health blog.
What do you think on this. Is yoga and meat realy bad. There are so different forms of yoga. Why Mister Cousens said this?
@#10: Good for you! Considering your moniker, I thought you’d like to know what I’ve heard from Dr. Cousens, at a lecture/meditation he gave at a NY yoga studio:
“Don’t eat meat and do yoga! Don’t smoke cigarettes and do yoga! They’re incompatible. If that’s what you eat, find another type of exercise.”
(Of course, I paraphrased, since I wasn’t recording at the time.)
im a yoga teacher, I'm paleo and I eat meat. I went vegan before my yoga teacher training course because I had read that to be a yoga teacher you must be either vegan or vegetarian.
I switched to Paleo during my course but kept it to myself as my teacher was a staunch vegetarian and to complete the course you had to eat like a vegetarian. I agree with the principle of Ahimsa or non violence towards others and towards yourself. For me being a vegan was a "violent act" towards myself (im not going to get into all the health problems related to being a vegan and living off soy everything).
For me yoga is about connecting with yourself and finding out what works for you. I have always been told that yoga is not a religion and can be practiced by anyone no matter there race, sex, or religious beliefs. But it seems that this "open to anyone" policy gets chucked out when discussing diet and eating meat. Seems very contradictory to me.
I'm against cruelty to animals and only buy free range meat and eggs direct from the farmer.
I used to go along to classes at the Jivamukti center in London as I love there sequencing of posture and doing yoga to hip hop music but I couldn't handle how aggressively they pushed veganism in every class.
I don't have anything against vegans or vegetarians, but for me I'm proud to be a paleo yoga teacher who lifts weights and likes to drink mojitos ;)
You can still get the full benefits of yoga and eat meat so just do what works best for YOU!
Probably comes from the religious association of yoga and Hinduism, a largely vegetarian religion. People saying that true yoga is this or that are overstating its roots. By coincidence I was just reading this article about how it's not really old or very Hindu anyway http://www.openthemagazine.com/article/living/not-as-old-as-you-think
I like Yoga, but there are some smug a$$holes in the yoga world, most of them vegan or vegetarian.
Here's a relevant link to another thread - The answer is also below http://paleohacks.com/questions/20887/what-do-you-think-of-the-claims-of-shiva-nata-yoga/20899#20899
*It is strange but very very few really know the origin of Yoga. Yoga is NOT a form of exercise or a magical cure for anything. The Ancient Hindu texts describe two ways of life, to be able to achieve singularity, or what is described as a union with God. Existentially speaking, to become one with existence, becoming completely aware of everything around you, from rocks to humans. One path is the path of denial and the other path is the path of indulgence. The path of indulgence is known as 'Tantra' where you are encouraged to indulge in everything, fully, that life has to offer - be it fine foods, sex, entertainment of every kind. The idea being that after there is nothing left to indulge in, you are left only with yourself to deal with and when one transcends that, enlightenment is achieved. Similarly, The path of denial is known as 'Yoga' where you are encouraged to deny all comforts - become a yogi. One is encouraged to live with just subsistence level everything and sit in various positions to keep the body healthy, control breathing, meditate etc. until there is nothing left to deny and once again you are left only with yourself to deal with and when one transcends that, enlightenment is achieved. Over the centuries both Tantra and Yoga have been bastardized into things that do not even have a resemblance to their origins. Both Yoga and Tantra are a way of life with a specific purpose and not a fad as they are now known to be.
Anyone that goes by the title "Dr. Sir Gabriel Cousens, M.D., M.D. (H.), D.D." is full of it. Oh, and he claims to be a rabbi and a Native American Sun Dancer, too. He obviously knows better than you because he has more titles and degrees than you.
The yoga = vegetarian thing probably does come from Hinduism, which Melissa already pointed out. Now, Hinduism is not monolithic. And it's not just a matter of there being several different ways to worship the same God, like you see in Christianity. Rather, Hinduism comes from a background of several different layers of culture plus a whole bunch of different ethnic groups in the Indian subcontinent all with their own local gods and goddesses and so on. One major change was a really old culture, the Dravidian, overlaid by another culture called the Vedic. (Also known as Aryan--these were the original Aryan people, nothing like what Hitler envisioned later.)
The two major branches of Hinduism which seem to have the most acceptance among Hindus generally are the Shaivite and the Vishnaivite--worshipers of the gods Shiva and Vishnu, respectively. Shiva began as a Dravidian deity but was adopted by the incoming Vedic peoples, and as far as I know Vishnu's always been Vedic. Now with the Dravidian deities you had more chthonic elements, sort of like the Titans in Greek mythology, while the Vedic deities tended to have more of an intellectual and spiritual orientation at the expense of the physical. So from the Dravidian influence they got tantric practice and from the Vedic they got the ascetic. Despite certain references to tantra you might run across in some strains of yoga today, it's been mostly the ascetic that's won out.
So it's no surprise that yoga and vegetarianism are so closely related now. The ultimate goal of yoga seems to be spiritual development, and meat-eating is seen as being too closely linked to physical nature. (Think about where the term "carnal" comes from and what it means now. Same concept.) So there are going to be a lot of people who practice yoga and see it as incompatible with a culinary practice that is viewed as grounding in nature. When you want enlightenment, supposedly, the last thing you want is to be anchored in the body.
Of course this all depends on which type of yoga you are practicing and what your ultimate goals are. If you're just after hatha yoga and the physical exercise then I can't see why it matters what you eat. And of course if you don't see spirit and matter as separate or antithetical then this is all academic anyway.
Might interest you to know that some other types of Hinduism are not as much into the vegetarianism as the most popular two branches. There are also shaktas, or worshipers of the Goddess--and some of them not only eat meat but also perform animal sacrifice. They aren't talked about much outside of India, and you probably don't want to mention them around Vishnaivites in particular unless you're out to ruffle feathers. ;)
There is a philosophy in Yoga called "Ahimsa", which means to do No Harm. That is why many Yogis are Vegetarians. I am a Yoga teacher and former vegetarian, turned Macrobiotics, turned Paleo... Check out this blog post http://www.yogauntwisted.com/yoga/doing-more-harm-than-good/ Namaste' Carrisa
I teach Yoga, have practiced yoga (hatha, vinyasa) for years, and don't see any problems with eating meat.
I think that the non-violence argument is bogus considering that many animals die in the process of spraying fields with pesticides/herbicides, threshing/harvesting the grain, and then there's the whole thing about human beings dying from heart disease which is likely due to a high-carb grain based diet.
I think that I will actually cause far fewer deaths by eating meat. I also intend to have a natural burial so I will eventually be food for many other living things.
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