Yoga Journal: Lowering the Bar, One Deep Thought At A Time • 22 July 2008

Bhakti Collective posted a letter to the YJ Editors. Excerpt, with a little emphasis added:

For me, bhakti means whatever strikes your heart with beauty, whatever hits the mark of your heart and inspires you to feel the love,” says Sianna Sherman, a senior Anusara Yoga teacher….

[In this YJ conception,] [b]hakti becomes whatever you want it to mean, which gives rise to odd ideas of bhakti sadhana. Ideas which could be better characterized as more of a New Age mental adjustment, something to make the mind to feel good.

I found the art accompanying the piece particularly relevant. It is a painting of a naked woman, waist deep in a pond with her head dropped back… It reminded me more of a shampoo advertisement than any traditional depiction of bhakti I’ve ever come across…. It is a somewhat warped idea of yoga which nurtures an egoism in which one conceives of oneself as a beautiful woman…. There is a shift from yoga being the restraint of the minds modifications… [to] a state of mind which is perhaps a bit more sattvic, but not really yogic at all.

P.S. Feel the Love by Donna Summer. At least better than shampoo: