As some of you may or may not know, my yoga article got picked up by Elephant Journal a few days ago and after a few thousand hits, several hundred FaceBook shares and many, many comments on EJ as well as Reddit, I think a few details need to be clarified.
Let’s try this again…
1) I’m not an anti-white racist bigot, despite what many of the thinly-veiled racist comments there indicated.
Anyone who has read my blog and picked up my vibe knows how insanely crazy that assertion is. I mean really, Indians are actually considered members of the Caucasian race as well. One of my family branches is white and so are a great majority of my friends and neighbors. I harbour the most insane
naughty fantasies crushes on a bunch of white dudes like Henry Rollins, Michael Fassbender and Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien. My article is basically about pointing out the lack of diversity, the cultural (mis)appropriation and the excessive commercialization of yoga these days.
2) I don’t hate yoga, I dislike the commercialized and contrived culture which has grown up around it. There are a few of us left who look at yoga as a spiritual discipline and the immense healing potentialities it offers and actually don’t want to have anything to do with this “market or spa yoga”. Ditto for “rock star yoga”.
3) Yes, I’m angry and frustrated at what’s happened to yoga. So shoot me.
It would seem airing anger and frustration is some kind of a taboo now and even more galling by someone who knows how to spell properly. As one reply on EJ rightly pointed out, anger is just a feeling. What’s important is how you express it and deal with it and I expressed mine in that article.
4) Rocking the boat will not make you popular and neither will writing a controversial article.
I wrote that article to air my opinion and perhaps it was strongly worded but sometimes the only way real and meaningful dialogue can happen is by being as blunt and direct as possible. I think by being excessively diplomatic or politically correct, you end up with an argument that almost looks like a white-out and goes no where – sorry, I couldn’t resist 😉
5) Relax, people it’s an article, not a hand grenade.
I was hoping the article would provide some food for thought and even some self-reflection. Why are you really doing yoga? It was never meant to offend anyone or their practice…Except maybe the Lululemon clad mall rats who were going to go to GLBL Yoga in Central Park.
So to my naysayers, chill. Like seriously. Chill. Wanna come over sometime for home-made curry, samosas and pistachio kulfi instead? My Punjabi Lamb shanks in spinach and tomato sauce are known to be restaurant level gourmet fare (sorry, I’m not vegetarian but I can always offer you Aloo Gobi and Pakoras instead) We can sit on my porch, eat with our hands and discuss. Just bring a bottle of wine (Vinho Verde, Pinot Grigio or Reisling) or some sangria please.