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White Washing Yoga -- India Currents Magazine
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 08, 2017 04:19AM

Whitewashing Yoga


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Why the best cult recruiters are people we already trust
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: September 10, 2017 12:23AM

The best recruiters are people you already trust. And the best recruiters
are not pushy - enthusiastic.

They are sincerely enthusiastic.

And this sincerity is attractive and appealing.

But sincerity does not in itself prove anything. It is
like sweet tasting substances.

We are wired to seek out the taste of sweetness.

But...sweetness can mask the taste of poison.

Those you trust who are sincerely, may without their knowledge have had
their sincerity co-opted by indoctrination experts (calling themselves
gurus, teachers, leaders, masters) to serve an agenda of deceit.

These trusted friends, coworkers, a teacher at your children's school, lovers, relatives, even in some
cases, yoga teachers or therapists -- they will be unaware that
their newfound feeling of salvation and transformation has been produced
a set of stimuli deployed by a dishonest group or guru, who are adept at manipulating the neurochemistry of trustful persons.

Those persons you trust do not feel exploited, even though
they are being exploited without being aware of it.

You are therefore unlikely to research this leader and group your
sincere, radient friend is involved with.

Even if you do learn alarming information about this group, you
may feel afraid to compromise a valued relationship by taking this
seriously. You may persuade yourself that this is obsolete
information, that it is about a different sect from the one your
friend is in.

You become an enabler for your friend by making these excuses to yourself.

You will not be aware that when you have this kind of fear, a fear that silences you, that this is a danger sign in the context of any relationship.

The most effective recruiters for a cult do not know that they and their
sincerity are being pimped by their group.

Pimped to to recruit for their guru or group via their existing relationship networks.

For the rest of the article go here:


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/10/2017 12:35AM by corboy.

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Re: The downside of yoga
Posted by: Alex45 ()
Date: November 13, 2017 11:11AM

History has shown the vicious cycle of anything good: it starts, it catches fire, it spreads far and wide from hype and super hype. with super hype is the evolvement of the good thing. different techniques, applications, combinations etc. People catch the hype fever, some overdo it. Some people get harmed by the wrong application or wrong combination or whatever. Then that mistaken use gets a bad rap, catches fire, spreads far and wide and a blanket of bad is then thrown over what was originally good.
Take water, for instance. It’s good for you, indispensable to life. But water can kill, too.
Therefore, don’t be carried away by everything you read, see, hear. Not all may be true. In fact many have an ounce of truth blown out of proportions. Investigate. The moral of the story is: moderation, prudence, guidance, discretion.

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Me Too - Pattabhi Jois - Chronic, Serial Sexual Predator
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: December 20, 2017 01:05AM

Karen Rain Responds to Mary Taylor’s Post About the Sexual Misconduct of Pattabhi Jois

December 11, 20174 min read


Make sure to read the comments. Notice how rapidly the discussion got derailed by arguments about different definitions of scantily clad as pertains to women vs males.

One person summed it up very well.


Joanna Carichner
thank you for the post. I know you address this in the article, but it is particularly notable that all the women are referred to as "scantily clad" when they are wearing almost identical outfits to the men (except the women are more covered). Why is men in skin tight shorts and no shirt not seen as "scantily clad"?

Corboy: Damn right. And it isn't just in India. Go get on your local transit and see the blokes who are man spreading, taking up two seats, like they're doing limbering up exercises to prepare themselves for prostate surgery.

No one says anything. Eyes are averted.

No one comes up and compliments the man spreader on the size of his
junk and says "Duuuude, your package is just sooo gorgeous, let me give you some help with that."


Now, imagine the uproar if any female did this same thing.

Double standard folks. And yes, it does stink.

Here are some thoughtful comments following the Pattabhi Jois expose.

JD - ·
U. of Florida
Thank you for posting this. I have been assaulted by two teachers in 35 years, neither in ashtanga, although that is my practice. Both men are well known predators. Happy we are addressing this without shame
Like · Reply · 30 · Dec 11, 2017 9:21am

thank you for sharing this Julie. please share their names so that we can protect one another. thank you.
Like · Reply · 6 · Dec 13, 2017 12:07pm

ET ·
Bodhananda Vedic Institute School of Ayurveda
I have heard from and read of women being assaulted. They all have said it happened by well known teachers but never say who. I would like to continue training with well known teachers but I'm concerned I may have it happen to me or that I'm paying a predator my hard earned money.
Like · Reply · 1 · Dec 13, 2017 5:00pm

Matthew Remski ·
Experimental U
I can say that as a reporter it is exceedingly difficult for women in the yoga world -- just like everywhere else -- to name names. They face one or more of a combination of disbelief, victim-shaming, cult-hazing tactics, social isolation, retraumatization, financial danger, and legal threats. The anonymized accounts in Rachel Brathen's recent piece represent a first step in reporting. To go further those women will need the support of professional journalism treatment, and, likely, legal advice. It's a long process, but it's happening.




The women's clothing is not the problem, even allowing for cultural differences. Any teacher, especially one with Jois' seniority, can tell students how to dress appropriately for their class.

If he felt the Western women were underdressed, he should have said so.

This is on him.
Like · Reply · 4 · Dec 12, 2017 7:56am

JP ·
I'm extremely grateful for Mary's acknowledgement and hope that, as in this case, it will open up the discussion moving forward. Thank you Karen and Matthew for pointing out what seems to be a deeply-rooted belief for so many, that somehow women truly are to blame... This belief is so engrained that it shows up even as we try to deny it, as you have pointed out. I have often felt in the yoga world that just to come through the door in a female body, even if I remained in a frumpy snowsuit, even if I were to say and do nothing, my mere presence as a being perceived by others to be a woman is...See More
Like · Reply · 4 · Dec 12, 2017 8:05am


LN ·
Yoga Instructor
I am so new to Ashtanga and am feeling conflicted about the light that has been shown upon our Guru. I guess my question would be, were these adjustments performed in the same way to men and they are deemed inappropriate because the receiver was a woman? If we want to be accepted and allowed behind the curtain of the deep practices, then too shouldn't we be willing to receive the adjustments/teachings in the same way that they have been taught? If the adjustments were different between men and women then... there is room for deep question in my own mind. I would like to here the feedback on consistency of adjustments between sexes.
Like · Reply · 1 · Dec 13, 2017 11:20am

Matthew Remski ·
Experimental U
I'll be publishing an more extensive article in the mainstream press here in Canada within the next little while that will show that Jois' touching of women was absolutely different in feeling and intensity from his touching of men.

The other part of your question reflects a misperception amongst some Jois students. "Adjustments" such as those given by Jois have no pre-modern history. They likely carry the assumptions of the physical interventions he knew from the Mysore Palace, which evolved in a context of corporal punishment.

I'm afraid that if you've been told that there is something "traditional" about these adjustments, you've been decieved. This claim has been a common justification amongst devoted students. It's unclear whether it was used as a conscious manipulation or not.

Don't take my word for it. Here's yoga scholar Jacqueline Hargreaves on the matter:

"To clarify the historical and cultural perspectives on the adjustments of Pattabhi Jois:

1. There is no precedent for the m?labandha adjustment (as given by Jois) in classical, medieval or pre-modern yoga. Nor is it replicated in any other lineages which extend from KM (i.e., Iyengar, Desikachar, Ramaswami, Mohan, Devi, etc.). This practice appears to have started with Jois and to suggest that there is a yogic teaching in this method is nonsensical.

2. To suggest that Western-style dress was the provocative cause of Jois’ behaviour completely diminishes the power he held in his position as guru. It also displays a limited understanding of the constant threat to women’s safety that is experienced when living and travelling in India, regardless of what one wears! It is never acceptable for an orthodox Brahmin to inappropriately touch and/or adjust a woman regardless of their age, race, caste or clothing, and such an offender would be well aware that this type of action is improper and provocative. If anything, the cultural differences would mean that these adjustments by a provincial Brahmin are even more inappropriate.
Like · Reply · Dec 13, 2017 11:50am

atthew Remski ·
Experimental U
For a different view on the "safety" of his adjustments, read through Guruji (Stern/Donahaye). You can start with the interview of Brad Ramsay. If you buy the book on Kindle, try word-searches for "pain" and "injury".

Other deceptions in the above comment include the use of the word "traditional". There is no premodern history of adjustments in hathayoga. It begins in the early 20th century through the influence of various physical culture training protocols. A further deception is that Jois was an "osteopath". He might have used the word "bonesetting" to describe cracking people's spines, but that does not imply osteopathic training.


MM ·
Infinite Light at Cronomi Records
Im also new to Ashtanga and i red here all the comments! I can only quote :

Matthew 26:41

"Watch and pray so that you will not enter into temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak."
Like · Reply · 1 · Dec 13, 2017 12:21pm

RN ·
Retired, well almost at Retirement in Thailand
Miss Rain, my thoughts exactly in regards to Mary F. Bringing up western students dress and behavior towards Jois. She brought it up twice. And then at the end she summarizes her love for him. Double messages I got from her.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/20/2017 01:19AM by corboy.

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First Yoga, then Alternative Medicine - missed opportunities
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: January 02, 2018 04:35AM

My Life in the New Age
By Porochista Khakpour


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Re: The downside of yoga
Posted by: dirtbikes1 ()
Date: April 15, 2018 01:51PM

The downside of yoga for me was losing my athiest wife to a yoga "community" with a guru that practices all sorts of new age mumbo jumbo mixed with Hindu spiritual practices. You can read my story here: []

My concern now is keeping my child out of their yoga class which includes locking the room, no parents allowed, breathing exercises (animal noises), meditation with music and chanting, poses of course, and who knows what else. This stuff should definitely not be for kids.

So far I have been able to keep my daughter out, as she has no interest in yoga. Mainly I think because she knows this is a source of conflict with her mother and I, and also I hope I have opened her mind to not blindly believe what others believe without questioning. She is almost 10 but in some ways already smarter than her mother. She doesn't believe in magical crystals, tarot cards, or religion. She figured out at a young age that Santa clause and the tooth fairy, etc are not real. Spaghetti monsters in the sky is kind of our private joke. ;) I have and will do all I can do to keep her safe as long as I can.

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Yoga Culture, Yoga Society and Bondage to Dietistic Wellness
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: May 17, 2018 09:44PM

"‘If you are going to give such extreme dietary advice, you’ve got to have proof. Otherwise, all you are doing is stoking fear about a food group most people shouldn’t have to worry about.’

The Dirty Truth About Clean Eating - The Daily Mail

Read more: []
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook"

"If the end goal really is just good health, why does the focus seem to be less on reducing sugar intake and more about promoting expensive, less accessible forms of it? As Alan Levinovitz confirms, "the biggest difference between forms of sugar is their price and the foods they appear in." If health food advocates take us down only the most expensive and exclusionary paths to health, we ought to question their integrity."

The Unhealthy Truth Between Wellness and "Clean Eating" - Vice


I Escaped the Cult of Wellness

"Wild Wild Country" reminds me of my upbringing.

Lily Diamond

May 17 2018, 5:27am



"...I watched my mother grapple with the sturdiness of her own beliefs in the face of death. I realized that many of the ideas I took as my own because they sounded good were just exactly that: palatable sound bytes that translated well to the western mind. I needed to find my own answers, and I wanted to do so without the obligation of broadcasting those answers to the public. I stopped teaching and returned to my writing desk to ask more questions than I could answer..."

For the full article, go here:


The Unhealthy Truth Behind 'Wellness' and 'Clean Eating'

My eating disorder had once looked very different, and then I found wellness—but I was not well.

Ruby Tandoh

May 13 2016, 6:45am


So what if a few people needlessly spend a bit more and get nourished a bit less, chasing after a gluten-free miracle that may never come? That needn't affect the rest of us. Except it does. The language used in wellness circles doesn't just point to the ostensible effects of gluten on our health—it soars clear of dietary science and straight into another realm altogether. On popular wellness blogs, the gluten I've heard about is "evil," "poison," "contaminating," and "toxic." There's even a leading Australian gluten-free site called This isn't just about nutrition, it's about morality, and when food becomes imbued with this kind of scandalizing language, the dinner table becomes a minefield.

I spoke about this purity fetish to Nigella Lawson, whose guilt-free approach to eating helped to reconfigure my attitude to food when I was at my most vulnerable. "I despair of the term 'clean eating,'" she said, "though I actually like the food that comes under that banner. ['Clean eating'] necessarily implies that any other form of eating—and consequently the eater of it—is dirty or impure and thus bad, and it's not simply a way of shaming and persecuting others, but leads to that self-shaming and self-persecution that is forcibly detrimental to true healthy eating."



But between the lines of the wellness cookbooks, I read a different story, and it's not just gluten in the firing line. In Madeleine Shaw's first cookbook alone, the vocabulary used to describe countless foods, and the way they make us feel, suggests a less accepting view of health: "junk," "sluggish," "bad," "foe," "cheat," and "fat" are all words she uses. She also reminds us that our friends might try to sabotage our diets, but that we must learn to ignore them. Ella Mills begs us to treat ourselves when the craving takes us, but that given enough time, those treat foods will begin to seem "kind of gross, actually."

It gives rise to a kind of all-or-nothing approach to nutrition where all the delicious nuance of cooking, eating, and pleasure is brusquely swept aside. When I asked dietitian and advocate of the Health at Every Size campaign, Michelle Allison, about this dichotomy, she explained: "There is no third option presented by diet culture—there is only black or white, good or bad, dieting or off-the-wagon... And many people flip between the two states like a light switch, on or off, for more or less their entire lives." Nobody sums up the totalitarianism of wellness better than Deliciously Ella herself, though. "It's not a diet—it's a lifestyle." And that's just the catch.

For the full article, go here:


Wellness Is Mostly an Expensive Fantasy

Shayla Love


Why we fell for clean eating

The oh-so-Instagrammable food movement has been thoroughly debunked – but it shows no signs of going away. The real question is why we were so desperate to believe it.

By Bee Wilson

For the article read here"


The Dirty Truth About Clean Eating -- The Daily Mail/UK


Edited 9 time(s). Last edit at 05/20/2018 09:20PM by corboy.

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Agama Yoga Scandal Ko Phangan Thailand Vivekananda Saraswati
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 12, 2018 03:28AM

Agama Yoga Scandal Ko Phangan Thailand Vivekananda Saraswati


Agama Yoga Founder Flees Amidst Sexual Assault Accusations

Be Scofield

Ko Phangan News: Agama Yoga Founder Swami Vivekananda accused of sexual assault


Eesti Ekspress: Students blame Tantra Guru for Abusive Practices & Rape



Many give glowing reviews of Agama Yoga. The not so rave reviews in retrospect look prescient.

One man's summary


Reviewed July 19, 2013
waste of time...
if you're into "tantric" sex communiteis, you're at the right spot.
if you want to learn yoga .. don't bother.
that's pretty much it, straightforward !!

Review collected in partnership with this attraction
Ask SadhuBaba108 about Agama Yoga

The next two reviews describe incidents that echo Be Scofield's report.


A 2014 review of Agama Yoga in Koh Phangan in Tripadvisor



Reviewed February 10, 2014
sexual manipulation of the shakti's
I stayed at agama for 2 months last spring. I found myself being elated to finally 'have arrived' and felt blessed to gain such a level of knowledge about tantric yoga. I participated in the tantra workshop and met my lover there. I had a wonderful time. Muktananda seemed personally interested in me and I could'nt believe this, i felt flattered and confused.
I had some issues I needed to speak about so I went to Maha, then to Swami and then to Muktananda.

I had a serious issue and fell betrayed that swami looked at me like a was a piece of flesh disguised as a hot shakti that he could help heal. He didnt want to listen to me, he kept repeating that I needed sex 3 hours a day since I am Scorpio, that would heal men . Ofcourse he offered himself. He saw the look on my face and told me not to be prude, surely the sex in my life has been meaningless, but this kind is pure, since it is consecrated to shiva. I wanted to get back to the subject of my visit, but he would't have it. If I didnt want him, there where many other tantric men on the island who would be thriled to have a shakti like me..He hugged me and said all it took was 20 sec to know if you want a man inside you or not. I left angry and confused, and yes emotionally raped.

I heard the talk before, I heard about all the relationships breaking, I heart about the condemnation of monogamous couples and many yogis interfering in their ways by trying to seduce one of them, and plainly telling them 'this is not the way'. ( what Is the way ?)

Ofcourse when you are a spiritual searcher, by the time you get to the island, you are tired, like me. You sooooo need someone you can trust, who has the answer to your inner demons and a cure for your suffering. And they offer all that, and you are happy to accept. I do love the school's teachings, I am in awe for their extensive knowledge on the subject. But somewhere they srtayed. They honestly believe they are helping people getting rid of the pollution in their brains by church and society about monogamy by promoting sleeping around.( surely you see the mess and the tears it creates) They say they are sex counselors, and they had sex with thousands of women, all unprotected.

I had a talk to Muktananda about this, he is a grand speaker, very convincing. He nearly convinced me to leave my lover, see other men, set my lover free to be with other women, surely I was jealous if I didn't do it, he told me so. And how would I grow spiritually, how would I end my suffering if I stayed possessive towards my lover and not grant him another shakti? That was all I needed, I dont want to be a worthless woman So I went to see him the week after, and I left, I didnt sleep with him. And it was the best decision I ever made to turn these tantric clowns down. For some this is great, and just what they are looking for, but most females who end up in their ( and other) beds, will not feel so good as soon as they leave this island.

The position they have as teachers makes them get away with this. They highly insulted my intelligence. Sure, it has been nice to wear sexy clothes and to be transfigured into a goddess. But it is my power, not anyone else to take. When You feel you are being manipulated, good chance it is true. Be careful of yourself when you go out there, for it may not be what it seems


2013 Another review of Agama Yoga from Tripadvisor



eviewed July 24, 2013
emphasis on sex
I've done quiet a lot at agama (many levels and some retreats, workshops) and although I had the bad feeling pretty soon about the school and about the human 'interactions' there I wanted to give it another try as I had enjoyed a lot the first month teaching and it's content. But pretty soon I saw that the whole 'system' shares simmilarities with certain sects having and using sexuality as their tool.

There is a huge brainwash going on and especially some women easily fall into this as they come there with broken hearts. Open relationships are promoted. This is not necessarily bad if it's your way but the poor part is that monogamous relationships and people who want to live a monogamous relationship are not respected at all. You could be even more interesting to some of the 'advanced' hungry wolves if you have a partner .. So in this regard it's like in a very low level village bar ... Lots of drama, broken hearts and intrigues ... In the end I observed women and men going through tremendous emotional suppression - trying to overcome this by unhealthy sexual lives which turn into addiction.

Mr. so-called Swami loves to talk about sex with women in his private meetings (personal experience) and loves to advice men to work on their minds ... Very sexist and not the attitude someone 'achieved' should have, in my opinion of course.

The first month intensive course can be very inspiring but that is all. If you really want to dive into spirituality Agama is probably not the place to be. Better look for sth. else. If you're interested in some easy going environment with sexual adventure and intrigues then go ahead!

The retreats are cool though .. As they have a very clear goal you're not really involved into all the previously mentioned 'weird' spiritual perceptions...

Ask Nomadonnas about Agama Yoga


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Re: The downside of yoga
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: September 15, 2018 11:14PM

‘This is not your practice life:’ lululemon and the neoliberal governance of self.



They argue that the success of lululemon’s branding strategy is rooted in neoliberalism, a political ideology that has gained momentum in the last 30 years.

Neoliberalism puts the responsibility on individuals to mitigate and manage the risks and uncertainties in their lives.

The study examines lululemon’s ‘manifesto’, a consistent feature of the company’s successful but relatively low-budget branding strategy. Printed on the store’s reusable bags, the manifesto gives consumers advice on how to live well. “‘Stress is related to 99% of all illness,” it claims, and “Nature wants us to be mediocre because we have a greater chance to survive and reproduce. Mediocrity is as close to the bottom as it is to the top, and will give you a lousy life”.

Lavrence and Lozanski argue that such branding moralizes success and failure. If a person isn’t perfectly healthy, for example, this must be because of poor choices the person has freely made.

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Re: The downside of yoga
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: September 28, 2018 07:52AM

Being Broken: Years of sexual abuse alleged at Agama yoga school on Koh Phangan

By Teirra Kamolvattanavith and Prae Sakaowan Sep. 6, 2018



Nothing about what is unfolding on Koh Phangan feels particularly unfamiliar to Rick Ross, a cult expert, deprogrammer and author, who’s been interviewed on the subject countless times. The secluded island setting is, he says, a much easier place to create the environment necessary for what he labels “destructive groups.”

“If you take people out of normal circumstances and put them on an island, surrounded by people who are locked into a particular leader, authority and mindset, they create … a false social proof,” he said in a recent interview from his office in Los Angeles.

“You completely control periods of time where they have no feedback other than the feedback they receive from other disciples, teachers, acolytes and devotees,” he continued. “You’re in control of what they’re seeing, hearing, who they’re interacting with. It can be very intense.”

It’s a reality Ava, now three years removed from Koh Phangan, knows all too well.

“No one is going to be interested in you if you don’t do the same as everybody else,” she said. “That meant dressing a certain way, acting a certain way. Then all the behavior comes very normal, because people all around you are doing the same thing.

“I lost all perspective completely.”


While the stories of sexual coercion and rape might seem like obvious red flags to any potential acolytes, former Agama members spoken to by Coconuts Bangkok say the sexual initiations described are not introduced immediately.

Much as with better-known entities like the Church of Scientology, students are slowly graduated through levels — 24 in this case — only learning certain truths that might seem disturbing to a newcomer after first being properly groomed to accept the knowledge.

“It’s like a church,” explained Stephen, the project manager, describing what he saw as a form of manipulation. “They’ve created something that makes you feel left out when you don’t go.”

“People are always asking ‘Hey, have you done this?’ and ‘Why didn’t you go [to the group workshops]?” he said.

“By the time you reach level 3, you don’t really know what’s going on, so you want to go because you’re so curious. You want to be part of this elite group.”

Ava describes the experience as having a carrot continually dangled just out of reach.

“Every time you’re hanging out with people in the café, they’re like ‘wait until you get to this next level and you get this technique,'” she said. “It kind of kept you hooked.”



But while proponents of tantric yoga insist that sexual activity plays a relatively small, if important, part in their holistic approach to well-being, students and co-workers at the Agama school describe a very different experience.

“All of his advice that he ever gave students involved sex. Sex was the answer to every psychological, spiritual, emotional, physical problem,” Miller said in a recent interview.

Multiple sources corroborated her description of an unrelenting emphasis on sex inside the Agama compound, an exercise in breaking down inhibitions to the point where sexual advances from teachers felt entirely unexceptional.

“Nancy, you have to give yourself to men, you have to seduce them with your eyes and have as many partners as possible in as many Zodiac signs as possible,” she remembers the guru telling her. It was the only solution, he insisted, to finding the long-term partner she sought.

Ava, who said she had repeatedly made clear her lack of interest in Tarcau didn’t get away with mere advice, however, describing being “constantly pressured by him.”

“This went on for two years,” she said. “Eventually, I just felt like I had no other option. I felt like I needed healing, and he convinced me that he was the one to heal me.”

Looking back, Ava, a painfully shy yet hopeful young woman when she arrived at the school, now sees the consistent pressure she faced with a painful clarity.

She was being “broken.”

For the rest of the article, go here:


Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/28/2018 07:56AM by corboy.

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