Following on from the last post, I was sent the following shiurim on the halachic issues regarding yoga from Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz, who does a regular 10 minute halacha class for the YU.
You can hear the shiurim by clicking on the links below:
The upshot is:
1) Even someone as knowledgeable as Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz CAN'T FIND A HALACHIC HETER FOR YOGA, and has been unable to find any major poskim who have given it a heter.
2) The question of it being PERMITTED even halachically (which is completely different from the idea of whether it's actually a GOOD thing for a Jew to do) has currently NOT BEEN ANSWERED.
3) Most of the poskim being asked about yoga are being told it's just exercise, and have no idea about the information I covered in the last post about its deep - and current roots - in avoda zora. So as R Lebowitz himself says, a posek that doesn't have the full information about the subject of yoga cannot give a true halachic decision about the issues involved.
4) The one major posek who did come out with a firm position on yoga in the last few decades was the late Lubavitcher Rebbe, who said that doing yoga was prohibited as it was being used as a form of 'outreach' for idol worship. Some people say that's no longer a live issue, but I personally disagree, and think that it's just as much of a problem in 2016 as it was back in the 1970s, when the Lubavitcher Rebbe made his statement.