Yoga is the work of the devil, according to a man who claims to have banished evil spirits from 70,000 people. Gabriele Amorth, the Vatican's chief exorcist, says yoga leads to a belief in Hinduism, and "all eastern religions are based on a false belief in reincarnation," the Telegraph quotes him as saying. The elderly priest, speaking at a film festival in Italy this week, said practicing yoga leads to evil "just like the Harry Potter books," which he believes promote black magic.
"In Harry Potter the devil acts in a crafty and covert manner, under the guise of extraordinary powers, magic spells, and curses," said Amorth, who was at the film festival to introduce a new American exorcism movie, The Rite, which stars Anthony Hopkins as a Jesuit priest. The exorcist—whose favorite movie is The Exorcist—believes the devil can even be found in the Vatican itself, pointing to the sex scandals engulfing the church as evidence. Top yoga practitioners, meanwhile, say they don't know what possessed Amorth to make such absurd statements.