This video raises some tough questions about the Future of Yoga. {Adult only}

Via Waylon Lewis
on Nov 30, 2012
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Hugh Hefner has died at the age of 91. A man who embodied the fantasies, support of journalism & literary excellence, objectification of women and simultaneously sexual liberation—a complicated man and legacy. #playboy #hughhefner⠀ “One of the problems with organized religion is that it has always kept women in a second-class position. They have been viewed as the daughters of Eve.” ⠀ ~ Hugh Hefner⠀ ⠀ #feminism #hefner #religion⠀ ⠀ “I would like to think that I will be remembered as someone who had some positive impact on the sociosexual values of his time. And I think I’m secure and happy in that.” ⠀ ~ Hugh Hefner⠀ ⠀ #sexualrevolution #sexualliberation #sexuality⠀ ⠀ “Life is too short to be living somebody else’s dream.” ⠀ ~ Hugh Hefner⠀ ⠀ #playboymansion #Dreams #ambition⠀ ⠀ “I was raised in a typical Puritan Midwestern Methodist home and there was a lot of hurt and hypocrisy in those times. And I think that whatever part Playboy played and that I managed to play in terms of the sexual revolution came out of what I saw in the negative part of that life and tried to change things in some positive way so that people could choose alternate personal ways of living their lives.” Click link in bio for Playboy Yoga? #playboyyoga #elephantjournal #beofbenefit #rip

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“His causes — abortion rights, decriminalization of marijuana and, most important, the repeal of 19th-century sex laws — were daring at the time. Ten years later, they would be unexceptional…

The Playboy Philosophy advocated freedom of speech in all its aspects, for which Mr. Hefner won civil liberties awards. He supported progressive social causes and lost some sponsors by inviting black guests to his televised parties at a time when much of the nation still had Jim Crow laws…

The Playboy Philosophy advocated freedom of speech in all its aspects, for which Mr. Hefner won civil liberties awards. He supported progressive social causes and lost some sponsors by inviting black guests to his televised parties at a time when much of the nation still had Jim Crow laws…

The Playboy Philosophy advocated freedom of speech in all its aspects, for which Mr. Hefner won civil liberties awards. He supported progressive social causes and lost some sponsors by inviting black guests to his televised parties at a time when much of the nation still had Jim Crow laws…

feminist critic, Susan Brownmiller, debating Mr. Hefner on a television talk show, asserted, “The role that you have selected for women is degrading to women because you choose to see women as sex objects, not as full human beings.’” ~ NY Times

Bonus: for a beautiful, rather non-sexual photo series: Nude Yoga. {Photos of Model, shot by Husband}

 Adult: Sara Jean Underwood Playboy’s Yoga Full Video

Bonus: want to see something better? Best yoga video you’ve seen for a long time.

Bonus: (Tasteful) Nude Yoga.

Bonus: Naked Yoga: Now that’s Hot Yoga (Try this [only] at Home).

Bonus: Tantric Sex (and the City).

I was among several who broke the news on the existence of “Playboy Yoga” a few years back—I swear, I just read elephant for the yoga.

And I’m personally of the opinion that this is fine if it gets folks beyond lust—the videos aren’t that sexy—and back to thinking about yoga. Likely, this video will attract folks who normally don’t belong to the “yoga demographic”—and I’m good with that. But there are serious concerns, too—touched on in my original blog, “Now we’ve seen everything.*”

But we’ve never shared the nude version. Until now.

A few years after the controversy’s died down, I think we’re ready. Or, not. Either way, here ’tis. It’s just a naked body—and, yet, it’s

…the ultimate challenge to those “Yobo” fans who say that Yoga for Weight Loss, Disco Yoga, Bikram, Adidas Yoga with (my friend) Rainbeau Mars and Yoga without all that annoying Granola, Chanting or Sanskrit may not be “traditional yoga” (a moving target in and of itself)…but nevertheless may help open the door to those who might not ordinarily be interested in pure yoga, true yoga, quality yoga.

…Yup, there’s a new url in town:

http://www.playboy.com/yoga

Just the url itself is enough to provoke convulsions, grimaces, grins, vomiting and/or ogling. Beauty—or otherwise—is in the eye of the beholder.

This is provocative stuff—it raises some tough questions about the Future of Yoga (addressed by elephant, yogadork, itsallyogababy, joellhahn and, in comments, by our readers in the links above).

In any case, as the Buddhists say, it’s our obstacles or enemies that are our best friends, provoking self-examination, questioning and growing pains.

Video:

For more, click here.
Or here.

Bonus: NSFW! Is Tantra about Sex? XXX? In the West, it is.

Wii:

 

For more Wii.

~

One of our leading teachers defines yoga:

Cutting yoga ambition:

 

NSFW:

4,268,908 views

About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.

Comments

143 Responses to “This video raises some tough questions about the Future of Yoga. {Adult only}”

  1. Pkbray says:

    Whatever you think this is why men are totally delusional!! I have 5 children and don't look anything at all like this!! I am saggy and loose skin with stretchmarks and would love to look like this but unless I could rewind to 17 that is so not happening. But I am sure most men expect all women to look like this naked especially if they do yoga. I will never look like this even with thousands spent on plastic surgery but an a good person, smart and just as flexible and good at my yoga practice as Sarah. So please stop promoting this and show real women (with clothes) to encourage yoga practice and healthy living. This just makes us normal women want to slit our wrists!!!

  2. If you call no hair on a vulva natural

  3. rachel says:

    yes of course, thats why its a PLAYBOY yoga video, its sexually neutral, and its the viewer – duh !

  4. Holly says:

    Those honestly look like real breasts to me, but what do I know?

  5. robwolfpetersen says:

    Hate to be so blunt about it but no, no it doesn't. It's just a naked chick riding a bandwagon. I turned it on expecting to be titillated and I was bored within a minute or so.

  6. Simon says:

    The soul of yoga will never die, regardless of how many sheaths try to smother it's light.

    You can't hide a call from the Heart.

  7. VeganLioness says:

    "Pornography is the undiluted essence of anti-female propaganda."
    – Susan Brownmiller
    This article does not address the objectification of women. Playboy and pornography is not 'fun'. It is formulaically telling women to please men at any expense and encouraging men to see women as objects to be used and abused instead of a human being to connect with. This is not in alignment with yogic principles.

  8. Bruce says:

    Yoga instructors typically do the reflection of what they say. They are used to facing a class and it is much easier to follow that way.

  9. zedrf rfg says:

    wowooowowow

  10. Jeff says:

    I think it it absolutely fine to look at it just in that way…

  11. francina says:

    less video watching more practise. Yoga is not just about the work out. As a matter of facts we say " we practise" yoga. I truly respect all the gurus and the yogis who spent their lives for this. And we should be very aware that a real good practise works in our bodies. I am not sure that this is yoga. I would say that this is a good work out inspired by yoga.

  12. Mary says:

    I'm confused. She kept saying left leg when she was clearly using her right leg. Or maybe I should have watched it backwards? Not sure why yoga needs to be done naked but if you got it flaunt it I guess. Could have used better instruction, clear focus on alignment and contraindications etc…and o yea, less crotch shots please.

  13. mary says:

    yes, should have read you comment before I just posted mine!

  14. ash says:

    Her alignment is pretty off in many of these poses, it was really the only thing I could watch so I would be careful using it as a guide for correct postures. But get on with your sensuality girl! Channel that Shakti!

  15. Sandra N I do bethink seeing about a year ago that a filmmaker was acid footage of "naked yoga" application absolute Ashtangi women and he filmed them in fact accomplishing their convenance (which was absolutely impressive). no annotation (at the time) and I anticipate he advised for the final artefact to be apparent at blur festivals. don't bethink his name.

    Sandra N and I don't anticipate they baldheaded their crotches!

  16. Guesty McGuest says:

    why is removing hair on your legs, armpits, and/or face seen as acceptable but the vulva is not?

  17. Johnno says:

    It occurs to me that all of the negative comments about how she looks (I might add I think she is beautiful) from how tan she is to complaining about her shaved pubes, reeks of jealousy, self-centeredness ("she cant do it as good as me"), and a strong dislike of men and todays culture. She is not claiming to be a yogi and doesn't mention anything about it being her path to her spiritually. It's like saying someone who goes to the gym and lifts weights is doing it to become a bodybuilder. It seems she takes it pretty seriously and probably spent some time practicing or she wouldn't be able to move from pose to pose so easy. That's not saying she is doing it perfectly but again I don't think she is claiming to. The fact that she is a Playboy model on a video produced by Playboy is probably different than one with a yoga instructor that would be produced by Yoga Journal. I think those that are comparing her to some yogi or a professional yoga teacher are missing the point. The idea that she is doing yoga and exposing it to an audience who may of never experienced it, is a good thing. Maybe all of the feminists and man bashers might not be so threatened if the model was fat and ugly with harry legs and a big old harry bush, but I think they would find other things to complain about. For people who claim to be grounded and spiritual, there sure is a lot of hate being spewed!

  18. Johnno says:

    I think you would have a hard time trying to equate this video to "pornography" or even Playboy Magazine for that matter. It is a video of a woman doing yoga in the nude, nothing more nothing less. YOU are adding your own ideas about "the objectification of women", I watched the same video you did and came away with none of those feelings. Humans are "meaning making machines", something happens and WE make it mean something! YOU saw a video, and YOU made it mean "objectification of women". YOU added meaning to what was ONLY a woman doing yoga without her clothes on.

  19. Johnno says:

    Yogifeminist, speaking for culture, your "existence is to make men feel satisfied" is a total bunch of B.S. This seems to be the comment of someone who has an OVER INFLATED sense of SELF! You are not that important. Get over yourself. Your other comment about "I don't do anything to satisfy men" only makes you seem like a man hating, bitter, and lonely person. Your comments and thoughts do not seem to be the kind of things that would come from ANY kind of yogi.

  20. heylennyjay says:

    To each their own but I don't believe that the true intent of this video (or Playboys inclusion of yoga to its brand) was to spread the yoga practice and lifestyle. While naked yoga can be captured on film in a non-sexual manner, I don't think that that was the director's aim. The style in which it was shot and the strange 70's porno music in the background definitely gave it a softcore kind of feel. I'm not offended by the video in the slightest, but I'm also not anymore inspired or knowledgeable from viewing.

  21. Rene says:

    Thanks Kris, i totally agree with you. I find that a naked instructor helps a lot when it comes to properly understanding many poses as well as moving from one pose to the next. I wish there were naked yoga classes locally in my city.

  22. Carla says:

    Honestly, I really do not see the point of "naked" yoga. Yoga is yoga, presenting it in this form is just telling me that whoever wants it to be seen in a sexual nature. It is totally absurd. Why do people always have to do that?

  23. DasSchwartztier says:

    what is wrong with naked yoga ??? the human bodies can be beautiful why not look at them? if your so insecure in your sexuality and self control that you can't look at this without control i suspect you have deeper issues that go beyond looking at naked people. as an artist in college i did it all the time its not a big deal. war guns weapons and mindless violence that's a big deal a nude woman is just beauty/art/and flesh it cant hurt you, unless your already hurting inside.

  24. Arthur&Martha says:

    yoga's all about what's going on inside right? so why is it an afront to see a naked form practising? Although I would like to see an older more practised form. Maybe its not the nakedness or the beauty but the ownership trying to cash in on ancient wisdom to make a fast buck that rankles (someone did mention LuluLemon in another post – however I do wear their pants as I write this), but this wisdom does belong to everyone so why shouldn't we practise how we like?

  25. Destiny H. says:

    The people who are hating on this video are just hating on the fact there is a beautiful young women who happens to be naked while doing something she loves.I have met ms.Underwood myself and she is very sweet,polite,down to earth as a women could get.put beside my personal feeling towards her,no one needs to judge on anything that she is doing. Just because she has a nice body and isn't afraid to show it doesn't mean that she is doing it to get attention or taking something(like yoga) that is so peaceful,personal,relaxing,wholesome,and just flat out being in touch with your self,and proudly sharing with the world how she does it doesn't mean she is turning it into something inappropriat or demeaning towards women. And for everyone who says that she isn't doing it right and her alignment is off,no one does everything perfect.not even you!(those who are judging her alignment and poses) god women are so jealous of any othr female who has a great body and isn't afraid to show it.if it was a video of yourself(anyone) would this video be boring or inapropriate or discusting or gross then? Give the girl a break.I think it's wonderful and fantastic that she has the balls to make a video like this and not give a shit what any haters have to think.so grow up and stop being so judgmental

  26. FatOldFart says:

    Wow. Lighten up. It's only naked Yoga. Quite honestly I used to think Yoga was stupid but after seeing Sarah do it I might give it a try. Of course I'll make sure no women can see me. The last thing I want to do is trivialize or sexualize it.

  27. Nathan says:

    She looks and sounds young, but she's actually 30. Like others have said, it's not the best instructional video, and, begin a Playboy product, all the focus is on her chest. Good thing it wasn't a Hustler production!

    It always strikes me how judgmental and harsh some comments are on this "enlightened" site, as if people don't even try to check themselves before they write. Also by those who assume all sorts of dirty, perverted notions as the be-all of male attention. I mean, sure, I appreciate an attractive nude woman, and there is a sexual aspect to that. But I found myself more interested by being able to see her muscles in the poses. I think I'd benefit from seeing a guy doing naked yoga (although I'd prefer he wear some short briefs), it would improve my understanding of the technique. Actually, seeing some old dude who's been doing it for 40 years would probably be the most instructive… But as for this, the human body is amazing, and some people have amazing human bodies. And it's nice to look at them. Briefly.

    Lastly, I have a hard time believing any woman wouldn't find nude yoga performed by a man at least a little titilating. You're not dead, right? You're human? It's okay to be a sexual being… just don't carried away by it. Balance your animal side with your enlightened side, but don't let either one take over, right?

    Honestly, I just hope she gets a real yoga gig somewhere if that's what she's into.

  28. Rubyroberts1976 says:

    I don't get turned on by rich men, why do men always think this? I know very few women who care what income a man is on. This isn't the 1950s anymore.

  29. Garrett says:

    Probably because the majority of people who will be watching this are unaccustomed to the workings of Yoga. She's potentially guiding them through it, without saying, "Hey! You! Do yoga!!"

    And also her describing what she's feeling in her body can help people (first timers) understand that they're doing the pose correctly. If they do the pose, and they feel stretching/opening/whatnot, and they don't fully understand it, they might think, "Is this right?"

    Thus.. not necessarily weird. Just not for you (if you have previous yoga experience). Think in terms of someone that has never stepped onto a yoga mat, what it'd be like to get some instructions 🙂

  30. Garrett says:

    Incorrect. That's her normal voice. Women naturally have higher voices than men… as a woman, I'm sure you know this. And there's nothing p-e-d-o-p-h-i-l-e about shaved pubes. A lot of women find that it enhances their own pleasure.

    Maybe it's spelling it in YOUR mind…. but no. Overall, none of those things spell that. Your perception of reality is simply that – your perception.

  31. Mary says:

    All I could see was poor form. Knee ahead of the ankle in warrior? Elbows behind the wrist in chatturanga? Who is her teacher?!

  32. لعبة says:

    Has everyone above forgotten that she is a paid actress and model working for an adult entertainment company? She obviously does some form of yoga for fitness, or she wouldnt be able to do the poses so easily, but she is no yogi guru. This is the nude version of the same video she does clothed. Its marketing, thats all. It really isnt very sexy – the cameraman needed to focus on her breasts to remind you you are watching a Playboy video.

  33. gapperjody says:

    I feel disappointed, discouraged, and disturbed that the ALL-TIME! most popular post on Elephant Journal is one of a beautiful, young woman, demonstrating nude yoga poses. I certainly honor Sara Jean's naked beauty and her love and devotion to yoga, yet in my heart of hearts I know the popularity of this video has very little to do with that.

  34. elephantjournal says:

    People love admiring the naked human form. I am inspired by Sara Jean's photos because she demonstrates the asanas gracefully.

  35. Thomas says:

    Perhaps a strange question given the context, but does anyone know the song playing from 0:52 till 1:33 in the first video? I've been looking for it for years, but can't seem to find it…

  36. iAlias says:

    The kicker is that on the inside she's still ten times more attractive than you and I think that's what REALLY has you upset. Lose your hater attitude and your life will be much more rewarding. Both spiritually AND socially. When you can see someone be who they want to be as long as it's not hurting anyone else and not be angry then you will have a level of inner peace you never knew before.

  37. iAlias says:

    nobody is forcing a straight woman to watch this video. if straight women want to see a naked man doing yoga then they can go ahead and make that video. it's not rocket science.

  38. iAlias says:

    I agree. I was not really sexually aroused by the vid unless I allowed my mind to go that direction. There was nothing directly sexual in the video at all I was simply admiring her beauty. I think they did a good job here with body as art.

  39. iAlias says:

    "I don't do anything to satisfy men"
    Great attitude there. Meanwhile the 99/100 good men out there who don't mind doing things to satisfy women will skip you right by because of your misandry. If you want your half of the wheel to be loved you have to love the other half. You are truly going to reap what you sow if all you sow is ill-will. I'm not saying nothing bad has every happened to you. What I'm saying is bad things happen to good people otherwise bad people would have an excuse.
    You have some serious hangups. Culture is not telling you that your one and only purpose in life is to satisfy men. You have adopted a victim mindset and you attack anything that threatens you because you are incapable of seeing any other viewpoint.

  40. iAlias says:

    that is not the purpose of shaved pubes. shaved pubes are for enhancing sexual pleasure. when the man also shaves and those parts move together, the absence of hair is electrifying. you have a connection to your partner that you never had before.

  41. eric says:

    old maid!

  42. mitch_nz says:

    That's a very astute observation.
    This video is before she had her boobs enlarged,,, I think she looks much better in her 'before' videos.

  43. Ashley says:

    This does bother me. Because I'm a yoga teacher and work in the highest integrity. I'm a healer. I'm also an attractive female and just yesterday, received YET ANOTHER email from a guy offering to, this time, pay me "$150 to watch me do yoga in yoga pants and in the nude." Are you freaking kidding me? So, this hits a nerve because it doesn't help. It sexualizes yoga, there's no denying that. If we were a more evolved culture it would be fine and beautiful but we are very far from that place and Playboy isn't known for its enlightened points of view.