Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Profile on Dr. James Andrews

Those that follow sports closely know the name of Dr. James Andrews well. He is perhaps the most famous sports surgeon in the nation. His list of patients is a who's who of professional sports. John Helyar has written a good article about him on ESPN. I commend it to any sports fan.

More on Yoga

My friend Bob has responded to me about Christians practicing yoga. I left a comment for him on his blog and thought I'd post it here as well:

My critique of Pagitt stems not from MacArthur’s arguments, but rather from Doug Groothuis’. Groothuis’ opposition to yoga stems not from neo-Platonism, but rather from opposition to idolatry. He writes on his blog,

“Yoga, deeply rooted in Hinduism, essentially means to be “yoked” with the divine. Yogic postures, breathing, and chanting are designed not to bring better physical health and wellbeing (Western marketing to the contrary), but to bring union with God Brahman (a Hindu word for God). This is pantheism (all is divine), not Christianity.”

While you’ve got a point about Christian’s re-appropriation of Easter and Christmas, yoga is a much different matter. Yoga, as Groothuis argues is not simply changing the name of something or of a mere distraction, but about worship and faithfulness to serving the One True God.

In a lecture available online Groothuis does make a distinction between using yoga positions and exercises apart from the chanting and otherwise religious aspects of it. Without knowing how Pagitt practices yoga, or how the class at Solomon’s Porch is taught, it is impossible to make a judgment about the class. But it is very important that Christians make a clear distinction between yoga and simple exercise. This distinction is not made clear by Pagitt, and is only alluded to by MacArthur in the CNN video.

“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.” Matthew 6:24

Monday, September 17, 2007

Why Did Terry Ryan Resign as GM of the Twins?

Nihilist in Golf Pants offers eleven reasons why:

11. Needs to start training now if he hopes to be the Twins DH next year.

10. To continue his search for the real Ramon Ortiz.

9. Took a new position with the Sunshine Carpet Cleaners.

8. Bert Blyleven's hair plug guy told him he'd need at least a year off for recovery.

7. He saw an x-ray of Joe Mauer's knees.

6. He saw an estimate of Johan Santana's next salary demand.

5. He got a look at Nick Punto's batting average.

4. Wants to devote all his attention to scouting for more weak-hitting utility players.

3. Could no longer tolerate the fact Wally the Beerman earns more than he does.

2. Had to quit because doing donuts in the parking lot with the ‘87 World Series trophy tied to the back of his car wasn’t enough to get fired.

1. After winning all those division titles, what more was there to accomplish?

Can Christians Practice Yoga?

Doug Groothuis, professor at Denver Seminary, and The Constructive Curmudgeon, has responded to a recent piece on CNN on whether or not Christians can practice Yoga. The piece includes contributions from pastors John MacArthur and Doug Pagitt. MacArthur argues that the practice of Yoga is not compatible with the Christian life. Pagitt on the other hand practices yoga himself and seems rather intent on continuing to do so.

Groothuis is very critical of Pagitt and states, "he has little spiritual discernment and is oblivious to the realities of spiritual warfare." I'm inclined to agree with Groothuis here. Groothuis has recently lectured on Hinduism and explicitly states in the lecture that to practice Yoga is to practice Hinduism. He has also recently republished an article he had contributed for Christianity Today concerning the practice of Yoga.

Pagitt seems to be naive, as I had been prior to learning about the relationship Yoga has with Hinduism. He too seemingly dismisses the notion that the two may be contradictory. It is cause of concern when Christians so willingly embrace one of the forces of darkness, yet it is even more disturbing when a Christian pastor takes the side of yoga in a public debate as he did on CNN.

We Christians need to critically evaluate the culture and especially the practices of paganism, rather than pragmatically embrace things that are initially perceived as promising benefits. I pray that Pagitt reevaluates his position on the practice of yoga, because as this Hindu writer states, "The effort to separate yoga from Hinduism must be challenged because it runs counter to the fundamental principles upon which yoga itself is premised, the yamas (restraints) and niyamas (observances)."

HT: The Constructive Curmudgeon

Friday, September 07, 2007

Osama bin Laden: Political Scientist

What must the Democrats be thinking now when terrorist Osama bin Laden is spouting liberal, anti-war talking points in his latest video? Read some of these quotes--they are amazing! Where have we heard these things said before?

He talks of "neoconservatives like Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Richard Perle."

He says we have, "made one of your greatest mistakes, in that you neither brought to account nor punished those who waged this war, not even the most violent of its murderers, [former Defense Secretary Donald] Rumsfeld…"

"You permitted Bush to complete his first term, and stranger still, chose him for a second term, which gave him a clear mandate from you -- with your full knowledge and consent -- to continue to murder our people in Iraq and Afghanistan. Then you claim to be innocent! The innocence of yours is like my innocence of the blood of your sons on the 11th -- were I to claim such a thing."

"People of America: the world is following your news in regards to your invasion of Iraq, for people have recently come to know that, after several years of tragedies of this war, the vast majority of you want it stopped. Thus, you elected the Democratic Party for this purpose, but the Democrats haven't made a move worth mentioning. On the contrary, they continue to agree to the spending of tens of billions to continue the killing and war there."

Osama bin Laden is saying the very same things the anti-war left is saying--what should that tell us? Clearly Bin Laden is attempting to persuade the US Americans (sorry, I couldn't resist) that Bush and his policies must go, and that the anti-war left must win the battle of ideas and we must abandon Iraq and the "War on Terror."

Of course, Bin Laden assumes we aren't bright enough to realize we should never trust him and that he, like the anti-war left would lead us to destruction.