Do All Yogis Vote Alike?
As devoted as I am to my yoga practice, I try not to talk (or write) about it all the time, mostly because I'm not sure anyone's all that interested in hearing about my yogic journey - and because I don't want to be one of those people who insists that everyone else try yoga. If you're meant to discover it, I believe you will. (And I sincerely hope you do.)
But as I sat on my mat in meditation today, it occurred to me that part of what I value most about yoga is my fellow yogis. They're a varied bunch, men and women who have consistently opened my eyes to new ways of thinking and exposed me to views I might never have considered.
So I was taken aback by this item in a blog on the Yoga Journal Web site:
Hip-hop artist, clothing designer, and yoga practitioner Russell Simmons says President Obama is coming from a yogic mind set, especially when it comes to his policies. Instead of being fearful, he listens and reaches out to others, Simmons said. "He's an inspiration to the whole yoga community," Simmons told the politico.comPolitico podcast, which you can listen to at Politico.com. "I'm sure they voted 90 percent for him."
Simmons's comment occurred near the end of a segment in which the interviewer peppered Simmons with a series of quick questions. Simmons noted that in many respects Obama seems a very yogic president. Then, off-handedly, he made his comment about yogis voting.
Simmons seems like a reasonable, well-meaning man. But if you take him to mean that more than 90 percent of yoga practitioners probably voted for Obama, well, I have issues with that.
It's dangerous -- and, I might add, not very yogic -- to assume that the yoga community is so homogeneous that 9 out of 10 of its members voted for the same presidential candidate. Simmons's comment, casual as it may have been, suggests a certain narrow-mindedness and lack of equanimity that I hope is not really characteristic of him -- or of the broader yoga community.
What's your view? Is yoga primarily the province of one bloc of voters?
Jennifer LaRue Huget
April 20, 2009; 7:00 AM ET
Categories: General Health , Nutrition and Fitness
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