POLITICS
06/05/2013 06:24 pm ET Updated Jun 06, 2013

E.W. Jackson, Virginia Lieutenant Governor Candidate, Says Yoga May Result In Satanic Possession

E.W. Jackson, Virginia's GOP lieutenant governor candidate, is no stranger to controversy. A conservative pastor, Jackson has previously come under fire for comparing Planned Parenthood to the Ku Klux Klan, calling gay rights "ikky" and saying President Barack Obama has a "Muslim perspective."

This week, Jackson is being skewered yet again -- this time for saying that doing yoga may leave unsuspecting people vulnerable to satanic possession.

In a post for the National Review on Wednesday, Betsy Woodruff highlighted some quotes from Jackson's 2008 book Ten Commandments to an Extraordinary Life: Making Your Dreams Come True. Among them was one about the hazards of yoga.

"When one hears the word meditation, it conjures an image of Maharishi Yoga talking about finding a mantra and striving for nirvana," Jackson wrote in his book, according to Woodruff. "The purpose of such meditation is to empty oneself. [Satan] is happy to invade the empty vacuum of your soul and possess it. Beware of systems of spirituality which tell you to empty yourself. You will end up filled with something you probably do not want."

"Behind the ice-cold eyes of Lululemon princesses burn the demonic flames of eternal hell," joked Atlantic Wire's Elspeth Reeve this week in response to Jackson's comment.

Despite the criticism Jackson has endured for his many controversial statements, he has not apologized for them.

"I don't have anything to rephrase or to apologize for," he said in May. "I would just say, people should not paint me as one-dimensional. I have a whole lot of concerns."

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