Is Yoga a religion?

This is a question that seems to come up a fair bit. And the answer is NO. Yoga was created within the culture and religions of, and it is often used as part of spiritual practice. But it is not a religion in and of itself. It proposes no gods or saviours; poses and breathwork have been inspired by animals and Hindu mythology.  Yoga is adaptable, it can be presented with no elements of spirituality. Or it can be presented as a spiritual discipline that supports the Christian faith or the Buddhist faith or the Hindu faith. Yoga can be thought of as a science, a philosophy, a spiritual and a physical practice. The postures with deep breathing are linked with observation, acceptance, and understanding. Yoga is such a valuable instrument to promote one’s spiritual well-being. And an approach to life that seeks to unite all the aspects of our living, e.g. our inner, spiritual growth and our relations with others.

Practitioners can take from yoga what makes sense to them and deepens their own faith and spiritual commitment.  The yogic codes of Yamas and Niyamas can strengthen our appreciation for whatever religious teachings we follow. The classical tradition of Yoga represents a precious gift from India to the world. And it can be used with benefit by people of different religious and philosophical understandings. Just as you can be a witch and a Christian, you can also be a yogi and a Christian, should you so wish.