October 23, 2020

We are living in the days when more and more people are suffering from depression. And a depressed person is bereft of all hope and most importantly peace. With the advent of new technological devices, sleep, diet and exercise are completely neglected. As a little boy, my interests included climbing the trees, swimming in the river, building sand castles, going to the forest, fishing and many other physical activities you would do outdoors. We valued and cherished the toys my grandmother bought my sister and me as in Russia during the 1990s economic depression it was considered a luxury.

Humans are biosocial beings which tells us about the interaction of biological and social factors. In plain language, we are living beings who are naturally meant to socialize in person and spend time outdoors admiring the nature that God created. In careless childhood you are supposed to be full of optimism and happiness with a bright future in mind. Nevertheless, more and more children are suffering from depression and have thoughts of committing suicide. Of course, there are multiple reasons and factors, but the primary causes are the lack of communication and broken families. You can hardly find a child who wouldn’t be interested in their electronic devices and computer games, and even worse addicted to them. On top of that, in today’s society through media, the family institution is trampled under feet and made look old-fashioned in the eyes of the young generation.

Many are running to and fro and have no time to stop and have a rest. Knowledge has increased far beyond man’s ability to cope with or control. Advanced technologies are supposed to make our lives easier but it seems like they’re getting even more complicated with all that new barrage of information, updates, and as a result, new bills. Our heads are stuffed with too much information, cares, and worries that in turn, naturally cause stress, depression, or briefly loss of peace of mind. We have less time for families, let alone socializing with friends or spending time outdoors.

God has put within the heart of every one of us, a desire or longing which will only find fulfillment in God Himself. If men will not humble themselves and accept God’s way in Jesus Christ (the only Rock to build our lives upon), they are left with nothing else but to make substitute choices to find that peace of mind. They are blown ceaselessly to and fro across the shifting sands of deception and sin.

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

The “promise” of yoga is freedom from stress and to “normalize” you, i.e. to bring you to inner harmony. First of all, let’s take a look at where the word “yoga” comes from. The beginnings of yoga were developed by the Indus-Sarasvati civilization in Northern India over 5,000 years ago. The word itself was first mentioned in the oldest sacred texts, the Rig Veda.   The Vedas were a collection of texts containing songs, mantras, and rituals to be used by Brahmans, the Vedic priests.

Yoga was developed by Patanjali, a philosophical dualist, to free the souls of human beings from what he believed was their false identification with matter. Yoga later was appropriated by Vedantists (pantheists) and became a method for achieving union with the impersonal God of Hinduism. In Hinduism, as in many religions, the union is desired with nothing less than God or the Absolute, and yoga is the system that Hindus have developed to achieve that end. The historic purpose behind yoga, therefore, is to achieve union with the Hindu concept of God.

Hindus worship more than 330 million gods and this same Hinduism is quite definitely the root of modern-day Transcendental Meditation and Yoga.

Shockingly, what was once considered as the kingdom of the cults is now being approved of and experimented with by churches. Proverbs 6:27 says, “Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned?”

Yoga got very big in our society. It is impossible to live in our Western culture these days without encountering yoga on a regular basis, from one’s own workplace or school to the local hospital, from one’s own neighbors, friends, or family to the local newspaper, television, or even church. It started as a cultural fad and became a cultural institution.

Statistics in 2020 show that every year, only Americans spend $16 billion total on yoga classes, equipment, clothing, and accessories. In 2012, this figure was considerably lower — about $10 billion. Considering yoga’s gain in popularity, this rising trend will probably continue. (According to the reliable source:

No. Of course, it has nothing to do with headstands, stretchings, etc. The matter is when people are trying to find peace through a different source rather than in Jesus Christ, and that may become an open door for evil spirits.

The Bible says, “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made.” (Genesis 3:1) What does ‘subtil’ mean? It’s an old form of the word ‘subtle’. According to Collins Dictionary, “Something that is subtle is not immediately obvious or noticeable.” and “A subtle person cleverly uses indirect methods to achieve something.” In other words, subtle thing is hard to spot or recognize.

Cats are extremely clever predators. Have you ever watched a cat hunting for its prey? Before you realize it, he already has a bird in his mouth. How did he do that? Now just imagine that Satan is the most cunning being than any animal on the earth.

This is why Jesus says, “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (Matthew 26:41) We often pray first, and then we watch. But Christ emphasizes the importance of being watchful in the first place.

This is how something occultic subtly gets into people’s lives without them realizing it and then they wonder, “Why do we have so many fights with my wife or husband? I have lost the desire to read the Bible and pray. My children are often sick.”, etc. In some cases, people even see shadows or silhouettes of men in their houses. And I am talking about real cases that I personally know. Surely we can argue that as a husband and wife, we have differences with our soulmates that lead to arguments and it’s all-natural. And this is true to some extent. But I am talking about when the families are destitute of peace in their relationships up to the point that the only way out of the situation they see is a separation or even divorce. Otherwise, they continue living like cats and dogs. Without a doubt, there are also medically psychiatric causes but nowadays with the rise of popularity in movies, cartoons, and TV programs propagating magic, superstition, and extrasensorics, we can be sure that behind many problems people find themselves suffering spiritually from stands the occultic oppression.

Let us be honest, if we want to do something in order to be physically fit and healthy, it just could be gymnastics, aerobics, swimming, etc. Why would we have to associate with yoga? And why would we look for a different source for inner harmony and peace rather than the King of Peace whose name is Jesus Christ?

So, from a historical perspective, we found out that yoga has a direct connotation with something spiritual and pagan which already causes concern. If that’s just gymnastics, there is absolutely nothing to worry about. But when it’s accompanied by mantras, concentration on your inner self, or meditation – that becomes spiritual.

You see, if in some settings yoga is just stretching or headstands when we say yoga in general, it causes people to think that any yoga practice is OK. However, I personally don’t know any yoga classes that don’t include some kind of meditation or mantras. The Bible teaches us, “You shall not learn to follow (or to do) the abominable practices of those nations” (Deut. 18:9b, ESV). NLT puts it as follows, “… be very careful not to imitate the detestable customs of the nations living there”. Based on these Scriptures we know God’s character and what His will is for us. Does it matter to you what the Lord and King of your heart desire for you? Do you allow His light shine in every single corner of your heart? Or there are some hidden spots that are still in the dark? Scripture warns that “… those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God”. (Gal. 5:19-21).

More and more Christians are getting involved in this practice and they are trying to justify it by saying they don’t find anything harmful in it since yoga is just about physical exercises. But not everything that sounds biblical is biblical in itself. Let me give you an example. Take a look at this passage, “Now, it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Highest God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” (Acts 16:16, 17). Sounds right, but not of God. I can only imagine that in lots of churches today, many would shout, “Amen, sister. Alleluia!” But then it reads on, “But Paul, being troubled, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour.” (Acts 16:18) Do we have the same discernment that Paul had? Do we test the spirits whether they are of God?

Dr. Kurt E. Koch (1931 – 1987) received his Doctor of Theology degree from Tübingen University and was a noted German theologian, minister, and evangelist. He pastored and counseled those suffering from the occult in its various forms throughout the world, covering sixty-five countries and five continents. He authored tens of books on this most neglected topic in today’s Church.

In one of his books on Occultism from A to Z, he writes: “There are but two sources of hidden information and knowledge, or supernatural help, guidance, and healing – God or Satan. One may, through prayer in Jesus’ Name, seek such help from God. But there is another way to obtain the desired guidance, peace, or help – yoga. You may open a door of access and become prey to the forces of darkness to oppress in many ways.

The following are a few of the evidence of occult oppression or bondage, although some of these symptoms may stem from medical causes. Usually, when one or more of these manifestations are present, that person needs deliverance.

  • Prolonged depression or gloominess; indifference; unpredictable behavior; delusions; uncontrollable passions; sexual perversions; enslavement to drugs, alcohol, or tobacco; uncontrollable temper, hate, or other psychopathic tendencies.
  • Chronic fear or anxieties; nervousness or neurotic behavior; obsessions (fear of dying; acute jealousy); suicidal thoughts.
  • Psychic experiences; possession of psychic or extrasensory powers; psychic oppression (seeing apparitions; hearing voices; poltergeist phenomena, etc.)
  • Indifference to spiritual things, the Scriptures or prayer; chronic doubts or difficulty in exercising faith; unscriptural religious beliefs or practices; inability to receive Christ; hatred of the blood Atonement; blasphemous thoughts against God.
  • Muttering to oneself; abnormally bright or glazed eyes; serious marital or parental problems; strife and discord in the church.

If the oppresses are to be set free, some Christians must rid themselves of the naïve and unscriptural notion that believers cannot be oppressed by Satan. On the contrary, many have been oppressed, vexed, depressed, deceived, bound, and afflicted, especially where there has been any occult involvement, whether before or after conversion.” End of quote.

The following Scriptures prove his statement:

Deuter. 13:1-3  “If there arises among you a prophet or a dreamer of dreams, and he gives you a sign or a wonder, 2 and THE SIGN OR THE WONDER COMES TO PASS, of which he spoke to you, saying, ‘Let us go after other gods—which you have not known—and let us serve them,’ 3 you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, (WHY DID GOD ALLOW THAT TO HAPPEN TO A BELIEVER?) for the Lord your God is TESTING YOU to KNOW whether you LOVE the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.”

1 Thes. 2:18 “Therefore we wanted to come to you – even I, Paul, time and again – but Satan hindered us.” Picture what we, Christians, might tell Paul in our churches today, “Paul, God is resisting you. This is not His will for you to go there.” or “Your faith is not sufficient to resist the devil.” Even such a spiritually strong man of God as Paul could be hindered by Satan.

1 Tim. 4:1 “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times SOME WILL DEPART FROM THE FAITH (here Paul is talking about believers as they have freedom of choice. So, why will they depart from the faith?), giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons …” And I believe that the main reason why believers are being easily deceived because they are seeking something supernatural no matter whether it comes from God or the prince of darkness. It is supernatural and I accept it without testing the spirits. For this reason, they have so many weird revelations and manifestations in the Contemporary Church.

1 Pet. 5:8-9 “Be sober, be vigilant; (addressed to believers. Why being sober?) because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. 9 Resist him, steadfast in the faith …” We wouldn’t have a need to resist the devil if he didn’t attack, right?

Eph. 6:11-12 “11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” Dear friends, this is a serious and fierce battle. We have to be ready with the whole armor of God to be able to stand. We have to know God personally and closely so that we are not trapped into the devil’s occultic snare.

Gal. 1:8 But even if we, or ANGEL FROM HEAVEN (so it’s possible that it happens that the enemy of human souls approaches even believers), preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.

2 Cor. 11:14 And no wonder! For SATAN HIMSELF transforms himself into an ANGEL OF LIGHT (to deceive believers and non-believers alike).

James 4:7 Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

It’s no secret that we’re living in the last days and the current events are a witness to that. Moreover, the Scriptures warn that there will be a great increase in occult activity in the end times (and I quote the same verse again):

“Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons …” (1 Timothy 4:1)

Dr. Kurt E. Koch writes, “There has never been a time in history when the warnings against the dangers of occultism were more necessary than in the present. Multitudes of people, Christian and non-Christian alike, find themselves suffering physical, mental, psychic, and spiritual oppressions, few realizing that it is because they have allowed themselves to become ensnared in the diabolical web of occultism, which is under the influence and control of the powers of darkness. Whether done innocently or not, you might have opened the door to oppression or bondage to the powers of darkness, even though such occult activity may have occurred many years ago or before you became a Christian. You may even now be the victim of occult bondage and oppression because of this and are unaware of the source and cause of your problems, whether physical, mental, psychic, spiritual, marital, or other.” End of quote.

Now returning to our topic, it’s impossible to describe yoga briefly. There are so many forms of Indian and Tibetan yoga that a list of those forms would take volumes of books.  The discussion of this subject would require writing an entire book.

In a nutshell, yoga is basically a Far Eastern and Indian or Hindu system of philosophy and psychology. Sounds harmless and innocent. Dr. Kurt E. Koch had to counsel people who were spiritually injured through yoga exercises. He writes, “The word yoga itself has a meaning corresponding to the unio mystica, that is, the mystical union with the universal spirit. Some sources translate the word as the union with the divine. It shares the idea of self-realization. Man must aim at attaining to his eternal self through the practice of many exercises in purification. This eternal self or real self is supposed to be a part of the universal or ultimate reality.”

We can see already that it will always be impossible to harmonize yoga and Christianity. What fellowship has light with darkness?

Now, Dr. Kurt E. Koch gives several characteristics of the practice: “Let’s take a look at a few concise statements on yoga:

  • Every bodily organ is related to the soul.
  • Every person has a physical and spiritual nature which strive with one another for pre-eminence. Harmony and union of these two natures are to be achieved through psychological exercises.
  • Man’s eternal self is omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient.
  • Man’s eternal self is both transcendent and immanent; it is without beginning and without end, having neither birth nor death.
  • Material things are on a lower level than the mind, the intelligence, and the spirit.
  • Yoga includes all branches of physics and metaphysics. Yoga implies a synthesis of the physical and metaphysical universes.
  • Heaven and hell are the products of man’s mind.

The system of yoga stands behind magic, mysticism, and occultism. The above-mentioned statements reveal that yoga is totally opposed to what the Bible says. It is therefore dangerous for Christians to become susceptible to yoga.”

In his book “Occult Practices and Beliefs”, Dr. Kurt E. Koch writes, quote “Most systems of yoga can be divided into four convenient stages, at least for the western mind. The first stage embraces remedial gymnastics, breathing exercises, headstands, relaxation exercises, exercises in concentration, contemplation, and meditation. It would also include what one sometimes calls autogenous training. It is commonly said that Christians can unhesitatingly participate in this first stage and some doctors even recommend it in the treatment of their patients.

Many Christians assume that this stage of yoga is harmless. However, the counseling experience suggests otherwise. That technique of relaxation or attaining “peace of mind” actually leads to welcoming a foreign spirit or spirits at some point.

A certain school teacher told me about a veterinarian. During the evangelistic campaign, his daughter and he wanted to give their lives to Christ but they encountered a spiritual blockade to do so. Only after they denounced yoga and confessed their sin, there was a breakthrough in their lives, which made it possible for them to come to Christ.

In Johannesburg, South Africa, a student-theologian came to me for counseling. A few years earlier he came to believe in Christ and got converted. In church, he was advised to enroll in yoga courses. Several months later he sensed worsening of his spiritual life. He did not have a desire to read the Bible. Prayer turned into a heavy burden. I insistently advised him to immediately stop yoga exercises and denounce it.

The second stage involves the control of the subconscious. For example, masters of this second stage can control and govern their visceral nervous systems. I have met some of these people and they can do the most astounding feats. They can, simply through concentration, increase or decrease their blood circulation, and hence, for example, can make the lobe of one ear go red at the same time as making the color drain from the other lobe. One man could induce the crucifixion marks to appear on the palms of his hands, although this is in no way to be considered as a religious miracle. I saw another yogi stick knives through his arms and cheeks. The wounds did not bleed but merely closed up again as the knives were withdrawn and healed within a few hours.

On a university campus, I met a Theology student who did the second-stage yoga. He could increase and decrease the circulation of blood in his own body. He liked to have fun and entertained his fellow students with these feats. He could make the lobe of one ear go red at the same time as making the color drain from the other lobe. He also managed to cause red spots on his skin by suggestion. The question arises: what kind of Gospel is he going to preach when he becomes a pastor?

There was a certain police officer who achieved the second stage yoga. He managed to cause stigmata (marks corresponding to those left on Jesus’ body by the Crucifixion) in his palms by suggestion.  Moreover, he himself is not a saint but even an atheist. We need Jesus, faith in Him, and sanctification, no believers or atheists with the stigmata (marks) in their palms cannot redeem or make atonement for us.

In south-eastern Asia, I met yogis who were able to decrease their breath (respiratory) rate to a minimum, as well as their heart rate and blood circulation. At the same time, they fell into a state resembling trance which lasted for ten weeks. During this time they did not eat or drink anything.

The most significant of all cases I have observed in California. A young woman came to me for counseling. She told me that she became a second-stage master of yoga. She chose “Jesus Himself” as a yoga guru for her exercises. It’s important to note, that “He” was not the Savior or Redeemer for her, but just a good example and a great master. By doing yoga, she developed occult abilities. Then she felt unwell and tried to get freedom by her own efforts. Only then she realized how people who do yoga get enslaved. She began to seek Christ. Several friends prayed for her. Having won in a cruel battle, she was set free.”

Yoga does not help or set free but enslaves. It does not bring relaxation but a burden; it does not enlighten but blinds you. Yoga does not pave the way for Christ, on the contrary, it makes a person unable to receive the atonement of Christ. Yoga does not open a door for the Holy Spirit but for foreign spirits.

The third stage of yoga goes on to the controlling of the forces of nature. I have heard of Tibetan yogis who through concentration could release enough energy to melt ice. There are others who can make a fire break out without any physical or material aid. I have actually had things of this nature confessed to me in counseling sessions. Once in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, one such ‘fire-master’ came to see me. He wanted to get out of the position he was in but he could not do so in his own strength.

Former occultists very often fall away from the faith. They need to strengthen themselves in Christ and follow Him firmly.

If the first or second-stage yoga causes doubts that yoga is occult, the third and fourth-stage show evidently that you are dealing with the power from the pit of hell.

Everyone who does hatha yoga develops such new abilities as telepathy, the ability to predict events, a second person, and the powers of the supersensual state, necessary for occult activities. There was also an example of a pastor who through meditation could reveal mysteries or things done in secret.” End of quote.

I’d like to stop here and say that I personally heard a case with a certain pastor from Ukraine who used the services of an angel who revealed to him the secret sins of his congregation. The end of this pastor was very sad as right before his death he widely opened his eyes out of fear and with the words, “I thought you were the Angel of God!” yielded up his spirit. That was a horrible death. Proverbs 16:25 proves itself again and again: “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” I am surprised how many Christians accept everything supernatural without discerning spirits whether they are from God. The main point is the experience of the supernatural totally ignoring the source and testing such experience against the Scripture as it teaches us, “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.” (Galatians 1:8)

Dr. Kurt E. Koch goes on, quote “The fourth stage of yoga is concerned with the mastery of magic and the cosmic forces. It involves the practice of all spiritistic and magical phenomena, and it is on this stage more than any of the others that I have been able to gather the most material. One person who really opened my eyes on this subject was a man who had been trained in Tibet for 10 years by a master of magic. This person came to me when I was in Australia in order to be counseled. He was quite open about it and said that this fourth stage of yoga is a matter of pure demonical practices. He wanted to be freed from it all. Masters of yoga who have reached the highest level of development can produce materializations, levitation, telekinesis, states of trance, the excursion of the soul, and many other spiritistic phenomena.

A certain man, under the mentorship of Tibetan gurus, studied yoga, magic, and spiritism for ten years in a row. In Sydney, he heard my lectures and followed me to Newcastle, Australia. Having rejected the general confession, he listed his sins in detail one by one. He told me, “Tibetan gurus’ teachings are a cult of spirits and demons. I was burdened by the power of demons, too. Please, help me be free from all this.”

When meeting and counseling people like this, I always need a prayer circle, people whose prayer protects me. There are so few faithful and powerful men of prayer today among Christians.

I met people doing the fourth-stage yoga among Tibetans, makumba, voodoo, etc. They do yoga and cannot hide and admit what powers stand behind it. Now we have the chief teacher of yoga – Satan. His communion and art lead people to eternal destruction (perdition).

Krija yoga propagates an ostensibly “scientifically proved technique”, allowing a man to become a god. It’s a deception of mankind as if you have to climb the ladder to know God rather than by accepting and letting Him in your heart. A miserable attempt of self-redemption unilaterally! So the insidious plan proposed by the ancient serpent is being fulfilled, “and ye shall be like gods.”

Paramahansa Yogananda, (an Indian monk, yogi, and guru who introduced millions to the teachings of meditation and Krija yoga through his organization Self-Realization Fellowship), writes in his book: “The one who came to know his god-likeness goes beyond the physical cause-and-effect relationship. Now he is able to do any miracle”. Someone might think it’s all lunatic ravings of a madman but the spiritual world is so real and we forget about its existence.  There are so many mystic phenomena people cannot explain.

What can we say about yoga from the Christians’ point of view? Firstly, although it is not a very happy picture, there is a tendency throughout Christendom for people to adopt and to utilize the philosophy and teachings of yoga. A lot of people are of the opinion that only the later stages of yoga are dangerous for Christians. Is this correct?

One thing the West must never imagine is that it alone has reached the heights of wisdom and knowledge. The Eastern world mocks at us today, for as a result of rationalism we have blinded our eyes to half the truth. The East has experience of things, the existence of which the West, in her unbelievable narrow-mindedness, simply denies. Yet even admitting that the East has a perception of things which are stunted in the West, this does not sanction our experimenting in this mediumistic field. Yoga may indeed be harmless, to begin with, but it ends dangerously. Yet even the first stage of yoga is not without its dangers when for example the exercises involved are linked with short Buddhist prayers. I know of Christians who in taking part in such exercises have been made to repeat in chorus short Indian phrases by their teacher. On inquiry it turned out that they were saying things of nature: “Buddha is the enlightened one”, or, “Buddha is supreme”. One wonders what Christians are letting themselves in for when they are prepared to repeat Buddhist prayers of this nature. It would be difficult to maintain that exercises in concentration like these are not dangerous.

In point of fact, a young man in South Africa told me that after beginning some yoga exercises he found that he was unable to pray as before and that he lost his Christian faith. I at once advised him to stop practicing the exercises, and he did so. It would be good for us if we would keep in mind the words of the Apostle Paul when he said, “Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For the Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified … to those who are called … Christ, the power of God and the wisdom of God” (1 Cor. 1:21-24). What need have we as Christians of the inner ‘edification’ of these pagan Eastern systems? Have the Scriptures no more to offer than Buddhism or Hinduism? We insult our Lord when we leave the living source of the Bible for these foreign springs whose poisonous contents either kill or paralyze our spiritual lives.” End of quote (“Occult practices and beliefs”, Dr. Kurt Koch pp. 123-127).

To sum it up, yoga is based on occultism. The one who does yoga falls into the field where powerful impulses are transmitted. They are those powers of which the Apostle Paul makes mention in his epistles, as in Colossians 2:15, “Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.” Christ set us free from the power of spirits and demons. The Chieftain of those powers is Lucifer. By his false and deceptive “light,” he is trying to attract those who perish. And he managed to achieve significant success because yoga is so popular in the Western countries.

To support this statement, I will give some testimonies by rather famous authors in Christian circles. You can watch and read a great testimony by Jessica Smith on her website She was a yoga guru herself and she is talking about how her pastor and the local Christian church were involved in this deception. She even wrote the book entitled “The Shattering, An Encounter With Truth”. She describes it as follows, “It is the incredible true story of how the Lord pulled me out of the darkness and into the light. Written specifically to reach those who are currently involved in New Age practices and to equip Christians to better understand New Age traps that may be unknowingly creeping into their lives.” Do you remember we had a look at the word ‘subtle’ at the very beginning?

Another book entitled “Satan Is Alive and Well on Planet Earth” by Hal Lindsey and Carole C. Carlson. Lindsey and Carlson write: “Chris Pike (the bishop Pike’s son) told me in a personal conversation that he had done yoga and meditation before. During his exercises, he was possessed by spiritual beings who nearly destroyed his life. Then he denounced them in the name of Jesus Christ. Today he testifies the transforming power of Jesus. Since then Chris’s life entirely changed”.

The greatest deception of today’s world is that Satan does not exist. Therefore, we don’t take such discussions seriously. No one thinks much about the Devil anymore. In fact, words like witchcraft and black magic have a strangely medieval ring to our ears. Many people even think of Satan as somehow comic – and therefore harmless. Yet amidst the tragedy and corruption of our own century, it is ironic that many people doubt whether an active, evil force really exists. But Satan is not dead, says author Hal Lindsey; he has simply adopted a more modern style. Spiritualism, astrology, “new age” religion – all of these and more are signs of the creeping influence of the Father of Lies in our time. In this book, Hal Lindsey, a well-known speaker and author of the best-selling “Late Great Planet Earth”, outlines a battle plan for overcoming this very real and insidious enemy. The times may change, but the conflict is as old as the Garden of Eden.

To all Christians, who do yoga, should meditate on the words from the epistle to Galatians 5:1, “Stand firm therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage (slavery)”.

For millions of people in Western civilization, yoga is thought of and practiced as an attempt to gain self-control, relaxation, and better health through a series of different physical poses in which both mind and body are disciplined.

The branches and trunk of the tree may be all that is seen above the surface, but the roots are still there and as in the case of yoga, they are buried so deep as to be hidden from all but the one who examines himself as to whether he is in the faith. Do you test yourselves as Scripture teaches us?

Ironically, yoga and the English word ‘yoke’ are both derived from the same root, i.e. “to harness” or “discipline” or “to unite with”, and yoga is loosely applied to any discipline or technique which leads to a union with “god”. You might be thinking, “My yoga has nothing to do with a “god”.

However, you cannot separate the branch from the root … It’s the same tree! And the root has been traced back to Buddhism and Hinduism. Why would we flirt with something that comes from pagan and even occultic, thus being unfaithful to our Bridegroom?

My late friend, the minister, missionary, evangelist, and author of several books, Barrie Creak, calling on the Church to wake up from its slumber, describes five types of yoga:

  1. The Physical Way – HATHA YOGA, concentrates on the physical aspects of yoga, and yogis, particularly in India, delight their audiences with such feats as bringing up their intestines, popping out their eyeballs and rolling them on their cheeks, lying on beds of nails and slowing down their heartbeat and breathing to such an extent that they are able to be buried alive for days! All this is done, not to primarily attract attention, so they relate, but to “Banish the Distractions of Habit and Desire which Interfere with ‘Divine Communion’”.

God says, “Bodily exercise profiteth little, but godliness is profitable unto all things” (1 Tim. 4:8)

  1. The Way of Knowledge – JNANA YOGA, for practitioners who are more intellectual or reflective. Disciples seek to identify with “ATMAN” or “WORLD SOUL” through reason, and the discipline involves much study and meditation on the Hindu Scriptures. Eventually, students begin to concentrate solely on the identity of an “Eternal spirit” and the “true self”, and as a means to their end, they are encouraged to think of themselves in the third person (True self?).

Where is your reality? “Can you search out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limits of the Almighty? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?” (Job 11:7; 1 Cor. 1:20)

Jesus said, “Without me ye can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

  1. The Way of Love – KAMA YOGA, this and “Mantra Yoga” used in Transcendental Meditation, comes closest to Christian practices, and Kama Yoga is the most popular of the disciples. ([Love] “rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth” – 1 Cor. 13:6). It is best suited to those who are unable to grasp or be satisfied with abstract concepts, and it offers the aids of imagery and ritualistic repetitive prayer and devotion to a favorite “Avatar” (Incarnate God!). Of the countless Hindu deities (over 330 million!) there are most important:
  2. Brahma – The Creator; 2. Vishnu – The Preserver; 3. Shiva – The Destroyer

Jesus said, “Use not vain repetition as the heathen do for they think they shall be heard by their much speaking” (Mat. 6:7)

Ignorance is no excuse. “17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; 19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath showed it unto them. 20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: 21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves: 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. (Rom. 1:17-25)

  1. The Way of Work – KARMA YOGA, for active persons who are assured that they do not have to abandon the world to find “god”. The only discipline is to change one’s mental attitude, and whether the student is a manual worker or political leader, he must forget all thought of himself, caring nothing for personal success or failure, but seeking only to serve “god”. (not so popular, though!)

God’s Word says, “For by grace are ye saved through faith and not that of yourselves, it is the gift of God not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Eph. 2:8-9).

  1. The Way of Mystical Experience – RAJAH YOGA, for those who are primarily experimental and are willing to spend years mastering this technique (very few are) disciples begin with “5 desire killing vows” and “5 self-disciplinary rules”.

Vows: To abstain from 1. Harming any living thing; 2. Deceit. 3. Theft; 4. Greed; 5. Un-chastity.

Rules: 1. To study; 2. To pray; 3. To practice cleanliness; 4. To be calm; 5. To practice mortification.

All these techniques Yogis believe, lead towards the Self-Mastery required for union with “god”.

God says, “There is a way that seems right to a man but the end is the way of death” (Prov. 14:12)

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh to the Father but by Me” (John 14:6).

In summing up, yoga cannot possibly be separated from its Hindu roots and no matter how harmless it may appear on the surface, it is merely a clever disguise to cover devil worship (through the communion with false Hindu gods) and a plan to bring countless numbers of sincere, but deluded, people under the influence of demonic power.

“Be not deceived – God is not mocked! Whatsoever a man soweth that shall He also reap”. (Gal. 6:7)” End of quote.

I would also like to add that within Rajah yoga exist numerous distinctive minor approaches, including kundalini yoga, which seeks enlightenment through raising the serpentine “kundalini energy”; tantra yoga, which seeks enlightenment through uniting polar energies, sometimes involving illicit behavior.

Swami Vivekananda, perhaps yoga’s most respected missionary to the West and virtually the first, wrote: “According to the Rajah-Yogi, the external world is but the gross form of the internal, or subtle… The man who has discovered and learned how to manipulate the internal forces will get the whole of nature under his control. The Yogi proposes to himself no less a task than to master the whole universe, to control the whole of nature.” (Swami Vivekananda, The Complete Works of Swami Vivekanandaa, vol. 1, Raja-Yoga, “Introductory,”

Even in some Christian circles, where the emphasis is on teaching called the Faith Movement, there is a similar tendency to call themselves a little god who can control the weather and the whole nature. They also teach that God has no access to the material world unless we allow Him to do so.  “It all depends on your faith,” they say.  They state that God is powerless to do something on the earth until we allow Him to do it through us as channels. This doctrine of unbiblical faith is rapidly penetrating the Evangelical churches. However, such faith does not match the works and fruits of the Holy Spirit.

Vivekananda stressed that yoga was the perfect religion for the scientific Western culture that was losing faith in its theistic roots: “Each one of the steps to attain Samadhi has been reasoned out, properly adjusted, scientifically organized, and, when faithfully practiced, will surely lead us to the desired end.” (Ibid., “Dhyana and Samadhi,” Swami_Vivekananda/Volume_1/Raja-Yoga.) How can religious discipline be considered scientific? The answer is that within a monistic system there can be no division of the supernatural from the natural. All is one; thus all spiritual phenomena have their explanation in natural laws. When a yogi masters the “whole of nature” he has conquered and can now manipulate God Itself. Do you hear the same voice from the Garden of Eden?  “In the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like gods, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:5)

Now let’s talk about Kundalini yoga. Kundalini yoga deliberately attempts to arouse and raise the kundalini, believed to be Shakti or creative divine energy, which sleeps at the base of the spine like a serpent, coiled in three and one-half circles. Toward this end, kundalini yogis place a special emphasis on breathing exercises in order to gain control of the respiratory system, which they believe will lead to control of other systems and ultimately of the entire body, including the kundalini. Visualization of the kundalini rising is also a common approach, based on the assumption that visualization of itself has the power to effect that which it visualizes. Kundalini yogis also use asanas, mudras (hand positions), chanting mantras, and meditation to raise the kundalini. A classic object of meditation is the seven-petaled lotus flower.

Raising the kundalini often results in powerful mystical experiences and visions, as a devotee of the late kundalini yoga teacher Swami Muktananda explains:

When this sleeping Kundalini is awakened it raises its [serpentine] hood. Reaching this union brings the ineffable joy of Blissful Beatitude. …it gives various mysterious experiences to the sadhaka [i.e., yogi], who himself is struck with wonder by them.…The experiences in the gross body are such as tremors, heat, electric shocks, perspiration, tears, the thrill of joy, palpitation, involuntary suspension of breath or deep breathing, revolving of eye-balls… The experiences in the subtle body are such as visions of deities and divine beings, receiving instructions from them; hearing sounds like those of conch, bell, flute, drum, thunder… Yogi should not try to avert an experience through fear… (Amma, “Dhyan-Yoga and Kundalini Yoga,” quoted in Charles S. J. White, “Swami Muktananda and the Enlightenment through Sakti-pat,” History of Religions 13, 4 (May, 1974): 318.)

Are you familiar with this understanding of faith even in Christian circles? I will get what I visualize and believe in. It turns out that such a person does not care whether it is God’s will or not. He is his own master. Consequently, it is not surprising that we observe various weird manifestations that they claim to be the work of the Holy Spirit. I also know of several cases of such believers who attend the so-called encounters, who after such meetings as prayer with the laying on of hands for healing and deliverance or obtaining “spiritual” gifts, people became possessed or occultly burdened. Child of God, do you test the spirits as Scripture teaches us? Or do you accept everything just because it’s supernatural? Are you following the True God of the Bible by obeying His will and His Word?

In a manner somewhat comparable to LSD, raising the kundalini is considered risky, with temporary madness, lasting mental instability or illness, and occult oppression being possible consequences. (Gopi Krishna, an advocate of raising the kundalini, nonetheless vividly described how doing so unleashed for him seven years of severe psychological and spiritual disorders. (Pandit Gopi Krishna, Kundalini: Path to Higher Consciousness [New Delhi: Orient Paperbacks, 1992].) “He conceived of this energy as an intelligent force over which he had little control once it was ” (“Gopi Krishna: Sage of the Kundalini Energy,” Om-Guru,

Yoga is like a drug. You think that the situation is under your control until you realize you have already become addicted.

Even though some assume yoga to be harmless at the first stage, there is a testimony that proves otherwise. Here is a quote from a recorded conversation between an interviewer and an ex-practitioner (now a Christian).

  1. Why did you become involved with yoga?
    A. I was getting tense and unable to cope, or even relax; also I’d heard that it would help me to keep fit.
    Q. Did it help you?
    A. At first I thought it did – I had tranquility. If I felt under stress, I could lie down and do a relaxation exercise, but later on, as my mind and body became more and more passive, I experienced a sense of floating and unreality.
    Q. What happened then?
    A. Well, my spirit began to come out of my body because of the passivity, a sort of astral-projection; I could look down on myself and found that I was able to do this at will. I became terribly afraid and anxious and lost all sense of peace.
    Q. Did you begin with just physical involvement?
    A. Yes, I never intended it to become spiritual, I never wanted to meditate but it just seemed to develop naturally. I realize now that physical involvement always leads on to deeper spiritual levels, and that in fact, yoga is a way for the devil to gain entry into a practitioner’s life.

Such people are trying to find peace and joy through their own efforts. Only the Blood of Jesus shed for our sins, can cleanse us and set us free from all fear and anxiety. You can find your true life in Jesus Christ.

No one tells the story of yoga in America better than Stefanie Syman, whose recent book, The Subtle Body: The Story of Yoga in America, is a masterpiece of cultural history. Syman, an engaging author who is also a fifteen-year devotee of yoga, tells us about its dangers.

In her book, Syman tells the story of how yoga was transformed in the American mind from a foreign and “even heathen” practice into a cultural reality that is widely admired and practiced.

She makes clear that yoga cannot be fully extricated from its spiritual roots in Hinduism and Buddhism. She is also straightforward in explaining the role of sexual energy in virtually all forms of yoga and of ritualized sex in some yoga traditions. She also explains that yoga “is one of the first and most successful products of globalization, and it has augured a truly post-Christian, spiritually polyglot country.

Dr. Kurt E. Koch in his book “Between Christ and Satan” made a very relevant remark worthy to note for contemporary Christians: “Once a man who had been a spiritualist for many years told me that he personally holds spiritism to be a crime. As a matter of fact, the spiritistic movement has been succeeded by a more spiritual higher form of spiritism, namely spiritualism. While spiritism of the old kind is more concerned with massive experiments, spiritualism wants a spiritual and religious expansion of their ideas. Without doubt, spiritualism has a much higher level intellectually and ethically than spiritism of the old kind.” It is extremely disastrous that even in some Christian circles the spiritistic excesses are not being recognized.

It teaches one to focus on oneself instead of on the one true God. It encourages its participants to seek the answers to life’s difficult questions within their own consciousness instead of in the Word of God. It also leaves one open to deception from God’s enemy, who searches for victims whom he can turn away from God (1 Peter 5:8).

Christians are not called to empty the mind or to see the human body as a means of connecting to and coming to know the divine. Believers are called to meditate upon the Word of God – an external Word that comes to us by divine revelation – not to meditate by means of incomprehensible syllables. (“Between Christ and Satan”, Dr. Kurt Koch p. 149).

In conclusion, I also wanted to share my own experience. In England, I know a sister who was involved in acupuncture and yoga practices and thought it would bring her peace, relaxation, and healing. As a result, she lost any interest in attending a church, reading the Bible, and praying.

Christians are called to look to Christ for all that we need and to obey Christ through obeying his Word. We are not called to escape the consciousness of this world by achieving an elevated state of consciousness, but to follow Christ in the way of faithfulness.

Consider this – if you have to meditate intensely in order to achieve or to maintain a physical posture, it is no longer merely a physical posture. If you love Christ, why would you even flirt with something derived from Buddhism and Hinduism?

Scripture teaches us to look at the fruit rather than claimed emotional or spiritual experiences. We cannot associate with anything hostile to the True God. There are so many harmless kinds of sports that can make us healthy and physically fit that there is no need to resort to such practice as yoga. You can find your peace only in the Name of Jesus Christ and nothing else. Do you have that peace in your heart?

I did not purpose to write this article to cause fear in you but soberness. Be honest with yourself.

Jesus is called the Prince of Peace because He gives genuine peace and joy that this world cannot take away from you.


Jesus says,
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest.”
(Matthew 11:28)


May God bless you and grant you peace,

Max Volkov in Christ