NEW WEBSITE: www.ephesians-511.net
AUGUST 09, 2007
MOST REV. ALOYSIUS PAUL D’SOUZA, BISHOP OF MANGALORE
SUBJECT: YOGA IN THE DIOCESE OF MANGALORE
1. On June 25, July 16 and July 25, I had sent you three emails [reproduced below] on the subject of “MUMBAI PREACHER BRO. JOHNSON SEQUEIRA WHO IS ACTIVE IN MANGALORE“. I have received no acknowledgement even after six weeks.
2. Accordingly, on July 27, I posted to you a parcel of papers which, along with the above report, includes:
a) A report on PREACHER ANTHONY SAMUEL OF SECUNDERABAD LEAVING THE CHURCH AND FOUNDING HIS OWN CHURCH [NO RESPONSE RECEIVED]
b) ROMANCING WITH HINDUISM AND OTHER NON-CHRISTIAN RELIGIONS – POSTING NO. 1 [Kollam church] of March 23, 2007
ROMANCING WITH HINDUISM AND OTHER NON-CHRISTIAN RELIGIONS – POSTING NO. 2 [SUB: THE PROPOSED COMPULSORY INTRODUCTION OF SURYA NAMASKAR AND YOGA*] of March 28, 2007
d) My “Open” letter of March 29, 2007
These were already emailed to you on those dates and also posted to you as hardcopies on March 30, 2007**.
e) A 4-page write-up on YOGA*, prepared by me. It was published in STREAMS OF LIVING WATER, Kolkata, and THE CATHOLIC TIMES, Chennai [Serial No. 35].
*Two detailed reports each of 100 pages are posted on this ministry’s website.
f) My 14-page April 2007 report captioned “YOGA IN THE DIOCESE OF MANGALORE” [Serial No. 28].
It details the activities of
(i) Mr. V.L. Rego of the INTEGRAL YOGA SATSANGH in Pumpwell, Kankanady
(ii) Fr. Gregory D’Souza OCD., of Dhyanavana, RAS [Religion And Science], SRI [Spirituality Research Institute] and the YOGA Institute RYSHI [‘YS’ stands for ‘YOGA SPIRITUALITY’]
(iii) SANDESHA FOUNDATION FOR CULTURE AND EDUCATION which functions under the auspices of the Karnataka Regional Catholic Bishops’ Council.
3. The “YOGA IN THE DIOCESE OF MANGALORE“ report is attached once again herewith for your convenience. I now look forward to a response from Your Grace.
In the CCBI Year of the Laity,
**To the serial nos. 2 b), c) and d), Your Grace had already responded as follows:
I went through the documents you sent me. I understand your point of view. I agree with your statement, “We Catholic Christians are not on a religious search, we have the Truth and a mandate from Jesus…” We do not grope in the dark but walk in the Light.
With regard to Fr. Romance Antony’s intention is to send a message to all that Christianity welcomes all but he cannot compromise the Truths of Christianity. Does he do it? I appreciate your standpoint. We need persons like you to alert us.
Thank you. I wish you a Happy Easter, Peace and Joy of the Risen Lord! Yours sincerely,
Sd/- + Most Rev. Aloysius Paul D’Souza, Bishop of Mangalore [Letter ref. My/236/2007 dated April 5, 2007]
Sent: Monday, July 16, 2007 7:07 PM Subject: JOHNSON SEQUEIRA
MOST REV. ALOYSIUS PAUL D’SOUZA BISHOP OF MANGALORE
RE. MUMBAI PREACHER BRO. JOHNSON SEQUEIRA WHO IS ACTIVE IN MANGALORE:
PLEASE SEE ATTACHMENT.
I HAD SENT IT ORIGINALLY TO THE BISHOPS OF BOMBAY, BANGALORE AND GOA UNDER THE FOLLOWING COVERING LETTER.
SOME RESPONSES, INCLUDING THAT OF A BISHOP OF BOMBAY, ARE INCLUDED
ON PAGE 2.
SINCE THEN I HAVE RECEIVED A FEW DOZEN MORE RESPONSES.
YOURS OBEDIENTLY, MICHAEL [ATT: BRO. JOHNSON SEQUEIRA NOT ALLOWED TO PREACH…]
Archbishop’s House ; firstname.lastname@example.org ; email@example.com ; Agnelo R. Gracias ; Percival Fernandez ; firstname.lastname@example.org
; email@example.com ; Diocesan Centre for Social Communications Media – Goa ; firstname.lastname@example.org ; email@example.com ; firstname.lastname@example.org ; nco
Subject: BRO. JOHNSON SEQUEIRA OF MUMBAI CONDUCTING MINISTRY IN BANGALORE
Sent: Monday, June 25, 2007 12:07 PM Sent: Monday, June 25, 2007 1:10 PM
MUMBAI PREACHER BRO. JOHNSON SEQUEIRA WHO IS ACTIVE IN MANGALORE
This is the third letter [starting June 25] that I am writing to you on this issue for your kind response, but this time without the attachment.
MICHAEL PRABHU, CHENNAI
REPLY FROM THE BISHOP:
Sent: Friday, August 31, 2007 4:18 PM
Subject: YOGA IN THE DIOCESE OF MANGALORE
Dear Mr Michael,
I have received your e-mails and the hard copies of your mail. Thank you very much for the same. You wanted a response from me regarding yoga in Mangalore. As I see it, the purpose of yoga is for concentration in prayer, contemplation and meditation. It is also meant to condition one’s body to achieve tranquillity and harmony of the spirit. Yoga is also used towards building up and maintaining good health of mind and body. Like any other technique, constant recourse to yoga practices do make a person healthy and peaceful.
Yoga need not be looked down upon, if it is used as means to further a purpose. There may be so many other methods to achieve good health, for those matters even different medical systems such as allopathy, homoeopathy, ayurveda, naturopathy. In fact yoga is like naturopathy.
There is always a tendency to be carried away by some method, if one does not stay focussed. There may be aberrations; so much so, one may even divinise yoga, as might be the case with some yoga masters, be they Christians, or Hindus. The fault lies when means take the place of the end.
The Catholic Church in the recent past, has opened herself up to the truths and good things found in other religions, philosophies and cultures and it has been considered as an appropriate means to have dialogue with others, but in no way diluting or watering down our own truths or even compromising them. It is possible that extreme positions do creep in at times unconsciously or even consciously. A constant watch over such eventualities has to be kept, provided one is open to possible errors. It is also possible that traditionalists may become fanatic and fundamental in viewing the changes that are taking place. The Church gives much importance to inculturation in the spread of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Yoga practices could be one such way of inculturation in the spread of the gospel. But limits have to be known and kept up.
When someone crosses boundaries it is necessary to bring that person back to the right track but this needs to be done only after sufficient amount of research, inquiry and study, lest there should be uncalled for confrontation, which may do more harm than good. Let yoga exercise be looked upon as means to attain the desired purpose of integrity of life in every aspect. Let Jesus himself be the undisputed Guru, as He really is. The practice of his gospel is itself the highest type of yoga understood in the Christian sense as means to attain perfection.
Wishing you all well and best wishes,
Most Rev. Aloysius
Paul D’ Souza,
Bishop of Mangalore
To: email@example.com Sent: Saturday, September 01, 2007 12:44 PM
Subject: MY RESPONSE: Re: YOGA IN THE DIOCESE OF MANGALORE
Your Grace, Bishop Aloysius,
I thank you for your detailed response explaining your position with regard to the philosophy and practice of YOGA.
It is essential for me to know what our good Bishops believe or think on these issues like yogic exercises and yogic meditation which are related to certain aspects of inculturation, inter-faith dialogue, eastern prayer techniques, the occult and the New Age.
You are of course aware – from the material that I emailed and also posted to you – that I do not accept that yoga can/may in any part be a part of Christian life.
While thanking you for your studying my articles and reports, which is evident by your delayed response, may I request you to please visit my website, www.ephesians-511.net and read the following reports:
1. YOGA March 2007 1.10 mb 106 pages
SURYA NAMASKAR AND YOGA TO BE MADE COMPUSLORY IN INDIAN EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS March/April 2007, 1 mb, 98 pages
You might also want to read my reports on HOMOEOPATHY, AYURVEDA, etc.
Like Yoga, Homoeopathy is specifically mentioned in the February 3, 2003 Vatican Document on the New Age.
Along with my analysis and comments, you will find the collated reports of many international Catholic ministries, priests, Bishops and Theological Commissions. There is no better and more complete information available ANYWHERE.
I find that none of those dozens of Catholic opinions agree with your positions.
My research reveals that the “aberrations” which you mention are the norm, and not the exception. I have provided a wealth of evidence of that. Those who have written are neither traditionalists nor fanatics nor fundamentalists but good Catholics – lay ministers, priests AND BISHOPS– who are sincere to Church teaching.
The opinions also show that yoga can never be used to propagate the Gospel by way of inculturation. Rather, the opposite happens. A syncretised gospel is the result. Worse still, the practitioner / propagator of yoga begins to worship false gods.
If you have read the section of my YOGA report on Mr. V. L. Rego of Mangalore, you can see that he worships the godwoman Mata Amritanandamayi.
The faith of the practitioner is always compromised. If at all, he preaches a Jesus Christ made in his own image.
All Catholic writers on New Age themes unanimously agree that there can be no such thing as “Christian” yoga. The two are mutually exclusive.
Incorporation of Hindu practices like yoga does not seem to be the means of evangelization or dialogue visualized either by Rome or by the Indian Church.
Your Grace writes, “But limits have to be known and kept up. When someone crosses boundaries it is necessary to bring that person back to the right track… “.
But who, or what body in the Church, has an idea of these limits and regulates those who cross the non-existent boundaries? What are the norms regarding the use of yoga by Christians?
Maybe Your Grace will be able to do something and have a response to this problem after studying the articles referred above, at my website. If it will be easier for you to read the hardcopies, I can send you the same at once.
Yours obediently, Michael Prabhu, Chennai