Thursday, June 28, 2012

Tim LaHaye hates yoga

I've been inexplicably drawn to Christian author Tim LaHaye for years now.  I can only compare it to the bizarre crush my hybrid-driving, vegan, Hare Krishna friend has on Toby Keith.  What would they make for 4th of July cookouts?  What would we do with my crystal collection? It could never be.

Tim LaHaye

It started when I was in middle school and saw the kids who were kinda dumb but way more popular than I get totally enthralled with the Left Behind series.  In the Bible belt, church was a pretty cool to be socially active in throughout high school, which didn't help me much.

The Left Behind books are about life post-rapture, after all the good Christians ascend into heaven and all the sinners are left behind on Earth (along with the clothing and jewelry of the Christians who ~made it~) and have to fend off the wrath of God and the other heathens etc.

Left Behind
Kirk Cameron made a movie out of it:

I think during the heyday I maybe read one of the Left Behind books and watched the movie and I felt that was enough.  To clarify: I don't believe in any of this stuff but I think it's interesting and I also think that there are enough people out there who believe in it strongly as to render these prophesies as important.

But the other day during a 12-hour drive home I was listening to Babylon Rising: The Edge of Darkness on audiobook.  My mother chose it because it "sounded scariest".

large print!
The Edge of Darkness is pretty much what you'd expect: a description of the protagonist, Mike Murphy,'s "six-foot-three-inch frame" by sentence #2,  Murphy having racy fantasies that end at first base, the protagonist allegedly a professor lecturing on "Biblical archeology" but rarely touches on anything archaeological and instead does something like list the various names of Lucifer in alphabetical order ("Abaddon, Accuser of the Bretheren, Adversary, Angel of the Bottomless Pit, Apollyon, Beelzebub," etc. etc. he goes on and on).  Murphy is also insanely preachy!  Whodathunk. 

But something did shock me about this book.  Tim LaHaye, through Mike Murphy, singles out yoga as spiritually perilous not once, but twice.

The first allusion comes when Murphy is being accosted by his agnostic supervisor who does not approve of the way Murphy is proselytizing in class, to which our hero Murphy retorts:
"I get it, (agnostic antagonist).  You can have a course in Greek Mythology, or lectures on the beauties of being a Wicca witch with white magic, or have health classes where you teach yoga and transcendental meditation, but the world will come to an end if the name of God or the Bible is mentioned."
I was so shocked I forgot to roll my eyes at the poor oppressed Christian.  Did he know something I didn't about the hidden dangers of yoga?  I mean I knew they banned yoga in Malaysia for like a week but surely Tim LaHaye wouldn't agree with Malaysian Islamic leaders?

The second jab came during another "archeology" lecture where Murphy alphabetically lists "things that have grown out of demon-related thinking":
"Astrology, auras, blood rituals, channeling, crystal work, dreamwork, Dungeons & Dragons, Eastern gurus.... UFOs, voodoo, Wicca, yoga."
I was getting really worried by this point.  Keep in mind this book was published in 2007 so it's not like yoga was just becoming mainstream in middle white America.  I decided to do some investigating as to what he found so objectionable.

It seems what they find so disconcerting about yoga is that in yoga and meditation you look within yourself rather than relying on God for change and that having a "quiet" mind will let evil forces in.  That's it.  I thought it would be something a bit more compelling.  Also, I have never been to a yoga class like this, what is that?

I didn't end up finishing the book and I probably never will.  But it has piqued my curiosity enough to research more into this End of Days/the Occult stuff.  I don't think the danger lies in yoga and Ouija boards like he does, but I think there's a lot of crazy people out there who take these ideas and run with it. And I'm not giving up yoga!

Anyways, namaste', Tim LaHaye.

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