“A Fatwa Against Yoga: Mitigating Conflict in the Face of Increasing Fundamentalism in Indonesia,” by Martin Ramstedt

This article focuses on efforts at mitigating conflict that arose between the Indonesian Council of Muslim Scholar (MUI) and the Bali-India Foundation (BIF) in the wake of the former’s issuance of a fatwa against yoga in January 2009. These efforts occurred in the framework of an international yoga festival that was held in Bali in March 2009, attended by large numbers of Muslim yoga practitioners and teachers. The article explores the historical background and local context of the fatwa in order to provide a sound basis for the examination of the strategies employed in the actual mitigation of the conflict.

3 Responses to ““A Fatwa Against Yoga: Mitigating Conflict in the Face of Increasing Fundamentalism in Indonesia,” by Martin Ramstedt”

  1. Garfield says:

    Just two quick points. Prophet Muhammad was meditating for days in a cave when in kundalini like fashion he heard a voice and felt a severe pressure on his chest that constricted his breathing and Islam was born. Second, Sufi Muslims have perfected a group practice where they breathe meditative Names of God, called zikr.

    These fatwas are written by bright individuals but with agendas. They can’t say outright that they want to diminish the role of the “Other,” and so they take the easy way out and write fatwahs. Such a shame.

  2. […] This article focuses on efforts at mitigating conflict that arose between the Indonesian Council of Muslim Scholar (MUI) and the Bali-India Foundation (BIF) in the wake of the former’s issuance of a fatwa against yoga in January 2009. These efforts occurred in the framework of an international yoga festival that was held in Bali in March 2009, attended by large numbers of Muslim yoga practitioners and teachers. The article explores the historical background and local context of the fatwa in order to provide a sound basis for the examination of the strategies employed in the actual mitigation of the conflict. For the full article by Martin Ramstedt in the 5th Issue of the Journal of Inter-Religious Dialogue, please click here. […]

  3. […] “A Fatwa against Yoga: Mitigating Conflict in the Face of Increasing Fundamentalism in Indonesia,” by Dr. Martin Ramstedt […]

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