Source: The Dallas Morning News
Wire Service: AP
SAN FRANCISCO - In Tara Guber's ideal world, American children would meditate in the lotus position and chant in Sanskrit before taking stressful standardized tests.
But when she asked a public elementary school in Aspen, Colo., to teach yoga in 2002, Christian fundamentalists and even some secular parents lobbied the school board. They argued that yoga's Hindu roots conflicted with Christian teachings and that using it in school might violate the separation of church and state.
Portrayed as a New Age nut out to brainwash young minds, Guber crafted a new curriculum that eliminated chanting and translated Sanskrit into kid-friendly English. Yogic panting became "bunny breathing," and "meditation" became "time in."
"I stripped every piece of anything that anyone could vaguely construe as spiritual or religious out of the program," Guber said.
Now, more than 100 schools in 26 states have adopted Guber's "Yoga Ed." program and more than 300 physical education instructors have been trained in it.