A Neuroscientist Examines his Former Life on Drugs Marc Lewis ... Meaning is
that special, personal insight of how the world is connected to us. ... and just
ahead of it the amygdala, which records the emotional colour and intensity of
Yesterday I met a Dutch couple while bicycling, and we had dinner together at a local tavern. After they told me they had come to Vermont from New Jersey (he had been a climatologist at Princeton University), they were very excited to report that they had recently returned from a visit to Oneness University near Chennai (Madras), India.
They spoke of the husband and wife "avatars" Sri Bhagavan and Sri Amma, and how they have pioneered the "neurobiology of enlightenment." They went on to speak of miraculous healing powers, of the imminent Golden Age, and how, by giving and receiving deekshas, the Oneness movement was helping to birth the Golden Age.
Deeksha is a Sanskrit word meaning "benediction;" one "Deeksha giver" explains that deeksha "initiates a neurobiological change in the brain that when complete enables the senses to be free from the interference of the mind. When the senses are unclouded by the mind’s interpretations, a natural clarity of perception occurs with accompanying spontaneous feelings of joy, inner calmness and connection to the Oneness in everything." Ahh, smell the bliss!
The really good news is that deeksha "is not a spiritual, emotional, intellectual or moral process. It is not about being good enough, or spiritual or moral enough or trying hard enough or meditating long enough. Now, with the energy of Deeksha waking up and living in Joy is easy and doable for everyone."
Well, anyone with $5500 that is! That’s the fee for the trademarked 21-day "Process" that may or may not bring "enlightenment," and which, no matter if you experience the kundalini rush or not, will advance the global spread of the Oneness work, which aims to reach a critical mass of 0.001 % of the world population – 64,000 people – before 2012. Banking on the 100th Monkey Effect, these folks will bring on the deeksha apocalypse.
Is it just my imagination, or do Western spiritual seekers just get dumber every generation? You can search high and low in the very visible Web world of the "Oneness Movement," and you will be hard pressed to find much explanation of the deeksha, which was described to me by my bicycling acquaintance as "like the laying on of hands."
Yup, the deeksha giver lays her hands on your crown chakra, and kickstarts the flow of kundalini, the fire that has burned countless naive Western novices.
Oh, if only American police departments, instead of sending in the "Just Say No to Drugs!" evangelists, would give a little primer in subtle body biology!
"Just Say No to Folks Who Promiscuously Mess with Your Crown Chakra!"
Posted on August 13, 2008 by newcentrist
As regular readers know, I am interested in cults, especially political cults but religious ones as well. I’m not sure how I discovered the Oneness Movement or O.M. I must have been looking for something on Youtube. If you are not familiar with these nuts, here is what they are all about.
Their leader Sri Bhagavan (original name Vijaykumar Naidu), claims he is Kalki, the final avatar of Vishnu and can “enlighten” us mere mortals through his touch or gaze. The cult is also known as Kalki Deeksha movement. He and his wife, Sri Amma (Padmini), offer classes (level 1 and level 2) for thousands of dollars to facilitate the “enlightenment” process. It is an old scam that never ends to bring in new suckers.
Loved and worshipped by millions, Sri Amma Bhagavan are avatars for enlightenment and God realisation. They are one single avataric consciousness in two bodies. They represent the Divine feminine and the Divine masculine. Together Amma and Bhagavan power the process of enlightenment of the individual seeker as Yin and Yang, stillness and movement, Prakruti and Purusha.
The new twist for this cult is claiming spiritual awakening or deeksha is a “neurobiological process” and adding strange accoutrements like a golden orb to the standard Hindu cosmology:
The phenomenon of the Oneness Blessing/Oneness Deeksha is sourced in the descent of the “Golden Ball of Divine Grace”, a mystical golden orb of light, into which Sri Amma Bhagavan had impregnated their divine consciousness since early childhood through a very esoteric process. In July 1989, this Golden Ball of divine grace descended into many children of the Jeevashram School founded by Sri Amma & Bhagavan. With the descent of the Golden Ball these children were instantly transported into deep mystical states of consciousness and experienced profound transformation, thus heralding the birth of a phenomenon Sri Amma Bhagavan had been waiting for over nearly four decades.
The Golden Ball of Divine grace embodies the divine intent of Sri Amma Bhagavan, namely ‘to set man totally and unconditionally free’ and it is this intent that powers the Oneness Blessings/Oneness Deekshas worldwide. Oneness Blessing/Oneness Deeksha is essentially the process of facilitating the descent of this Golden Ball, which naturally activates a neurobiological process in the receiver’s brain, thus culminating in a spiritual awakening. In addition, it also activates the seven energy centers (chakras) in the subtle body and the dormant spiritual energy (kundalini), which constitutes the basis of every form of transformation in life, mundane as well as spiritual.
How people fall for this nonsense is actually rather sad. In one devotee’s words:
‘Diksha’, or baptism as we know it in the West, is a hands-on transference of Divine energy that brings about a state of oneness, or enlightenment. In the past, only a very few have been blessed with this state. Now, for the first time in human history, enlightenment is being made available to everyone through the grace if Sri Bhagavan (See picture). Sri Bhagavan, or Kalki as he is often called, is an Avatar who has the mission of bringing enlightenment to the world at this critical time.
Bhagavan says that you cannot attain a full state of enlightenment through your own efforts, although you can get close. Full enlightenment is a state that must be given to you!
What happens to us when we receive Diksha probably cannot be understood by the human mind, but it can best be described as a neuro-biological shift in the brain. We become detached or de-clutched from our mind. We are still able to feel feelings and have old thoughts, but there is no charge there anymore, and we start to experience permanent peace and joy. It is not about becoming mindless, but rather ‘mindful’ and being totally present with reality as it is.
If you were a native African, for example, you could probably become enlightened after receiving only one Diksha. However, we in the West are holding onto so many emotional blocks and concepts about life, that it is not as easy for us to attain this state.
Here is a different perspective:
I am having a hard time getting my money refunded from the people at the Oneness Movement. They have been extremely “nice” but they are basically charging me in order to refund the money. God, I wish I never gave them the fucking money in the first place. It’s another expensive lesson, but the same one over and over – listen to myself, not any one else who claims to have some kind of “answer”.
It seemed so appealing, the thought of all my Issues dissolving after three weeks of deeksha. But the warning signs were there. Signing the waiver saying I could withstand sleep and food deprivation, the high fee and the inability to leave the ashram, being told everyone has the same questions as me so I should just go with the flow and ignore what my inner voice was saying…I am grateful for my rational over-thinking mind coming in to save the day!
But now I have to deal with these mo-fo’s to get the money back. And I am learning about cults and mind-control as I try to navigate through their system of niceties and bullshit. They have me by the balls. I want to write an expose on them before they get much larger, but who the hell has heard of deeksha? Or, as they call it now, Oneness Deeksha or Oneness Prayer. That edict came down from on high last week – maybe the authorities are getting on to the deeksha name.
It turns out many of the early devotees were likely dosed with hallucinogenic leyham without their consent, leading to the extraordinary experiences they shared together. After leaving the Oneness University many of the devotees experience withdrawals and psychosis. Some have committed suicide.
(Corboy, right now, this is not proven. But the difficulties this person reports getting his or her refund returned is revealing enough.)
As to where all the money is going. Part of it is going to build this temple:
The rest is being invested in personal properties and businesses owned by cult leadership.
Website of the Global Oneness Commitment, “Co-creating a happy world.”
Deeksha is a Sanskrit word meaning “benediction;” one “Deeksha giver” explains that deeksha “initiates a neurobiological change in the brain that when complete enables the senses to be free from the interference of the mind. When the senses are unclouded by the mind’s interpretations, a natural clarity of perception occurs with accompanying spontaneous feelings of joy, inner calmness and connection to the Oneness in everything.” Ahh, smell the bliss!
Chuck says he was "enlightened" in 2007 at Oneness University, that is a problematic group (their site [www.onenessuniversity.org] ) , critique can be found on them around the web. So the large group trainings the Spezzanos do also include their own spinoff of these supposed blessings.
sometime in 2004) they introduced a herbal substance known as leyhem. This mixture of herbs was formed in to balls about the size of ping pong balls and then eaten. They where told these would cleanse them in a very powerful way.
Indeed it was powerful. Most people began vomiting. After eating leyham, people had extremely powerful peak experiences with cosmic oneness and love beyond what anyone could describe. This was so powerful that some people couldnt handle it and had psychotic episodes, even after leaving Golden city.
Because of this they almost got in trouble with the police and in 2005 they stopped using the leyham and the peak states stopped happening. What ever was in them, vomiting psychadelic properties.
Will The Oneness Blessing Change Your Life?
By: Marcus Knudsen Home | Self-Improvement
Bhagavan and his wife Amma are the founders of the oneness university in India, located in a place called Golden city. They expanded and opened up a center in Fiji and recently also one in Italy.
People come to this university for transformation. May it be spiritual or personal.
Currently there are two levels of the courses and a third being planned.
In the very early beginning of these courses, it was all about becoming enlightened and the courses where a lot longer and I have heard of people who came there to more or less live there so they could stay until they became enlightened. This was a long time ago though. Ive been told it was in the beginning of the 90s.
The first courses that was held was over 40 days long and kept in mauna. Mauna means silence no speaking, and from what Ive heard these courses where really tough and relied a lot on the participants working on them selves through guidance from the teachers. Im speaking really tough, rolling on the floor crying and screaming was nothing unusual. They didnt have air conditioning and the higher standard living quarters they have today.
Then came the first well known courses that really got huge amounts of people flying in from all over the world. This new course was called the 21 day process. People came mostly because they where promised that they would become enlightened. I personally know about only two cases where non-Indian people entered this enlightened state during these courses. One later became one of the monks or cosmic beings as they are called today. The other one is living normally back home now, she is a very likable and sweet person. You can really feel her presence and just being around her to me feels special.
However, besides for a very few, enlightenment did not happen. They where then informed that if they did not enter enlightenment during the course, it would happen within 6 months after they returned home. This also didnt happen. They also had short 5 day courses with the same promise of enlightenment. When this didnt happen they offered a free new course that would get them enlightened. In this point of time (sometime in 2004) they introduced a herbal substance known as leyhem. This mixture of herbs was formed in to balls about the size of ping pong balls and then eaten. They where told these would cleanse them in a very powerful way. Indeed it was powerful. Most people began vomiting. After eating leyham, people had extremely powerful peak experiences with cosmic oneness and love beyond what anyone could describe. This was so powerful that some people couldnt handle it and had psychotic episodes, even after leaving Golden city. Because of this they almost got in trouble with the police and in 2005 they stopped using the leyham and the peak states stopped happening. What ever was in them, vomiting and nausea is are known reactions to alkaloids with psychadelic properties.
In 2006 when I attended this course we where told that some people had entered some kind of psychosis and that they had started teaching people how to handle feelings and negative thought patterns, to avoid this from happening and to keep us more grounded.
Personally I had tremendous experiences there both in 2006 and 2007, without any layhem or anything like that. I had experiences of extreme compassion, looking at an ant, making its way through Bhagavans lawn. I remember walking in slow motion, enjoying every step in a way I cant describe, eating pineapple and laughing in amazement of how good it tasted. I remember all the crying, screaming and anger that came up, the time when it felt like my head was about to explode and the time when I could not speak, only laugh. Theres no denial what I experienced. There is no way I could ever say it isnt for real. The years that followed, until now 3 years, later have changed my life.
Nowadays, theres no promise of enlightenment. Its more focused on transforming you and your life in to success in what ever you do.
Some people have felt incredibly hurt and fooled by the Oneness movement in the past. Others feel incredibly thankful beyond what words could ever tell. What most would agree on though, is that it changed their lives to the better, even if it took some time to see it.
With this article I want to inspire you to have an open mind and to not be afraid of the truth. If you decide to go to the Oneness university to take a course, come with an open mind, heart and a brave soul. If you go, give it your all. There is nothing to loose.
Dont go if you expect everything to be easy. For a breakthrough to happen there is usually some struggle first. Emotions, fears and old painful memories will surface. The trick is to not be afraid of it. It cant really hurt you because the hurt is already done and that is what you may feel. Just sit through it with a brave attitude. I say to the fear, feeling or emotion: OK, come on, do your best, Im ready. Because Im not afraid. When I learnt to do this, I really moved on in my life. A doctor diagnosed me with panic anxiety after I had a night where I was sure I was going to die. I got help how to handle it and within a few months got to a point where I could handle it.
The point I want to make here is that this is the kind of thing that can happen to anyone taking the Oneness university courses. No one else can do all the work for you and try to not expect anything.
Interesting how a recurring them in most of these teachings is to train people to fear their own anger.
The fight/flight response is hard wired into our brains, our bodies. It is older than the part of the brain that receives and responds to indoctrination.
Trying to eradicate or at least suppress anger when something is triggering our unease is to be perpetually at war within oneself.
And that makes a person off balance, more malleable to indoctrination.
PSYCHOLOGY OF VISION CANADA
'A FIRST NATIONS WORKSHOP'
NOVEMBER 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, 1998
Prince Rupert, British Columbia, Canada.
Facilitated by Chuck and Lency Spezzano and sponsored by the First Nations Women's Group
Sun 28 Jan 2001 News A1 / FRONT Suzanne Fournier, Vancouver Province
Natives find New Age help in Hawaii
By: Suzanne Fournier, Vancouver Province
Natives are spending thousands of tax dollars jetting off to Hawaii for
workshops in questionable New Age therapies.
Critics say the training trips, and the ensuing therapy sessions on the
reserves, are a waste of taxpayers' money, unhelpful and
potentially dangerous for victims of everything from residential school
abuse to sexual assault and addictions.
But Dr. Jay Wortman, B.C. director for Health Canada's medical services
branch, says bands can spend health money as they
``We might not condone it and I agree 100-per-cent it looks bad, but it
would be paternalistic to dictate to First Nations how
they spend their health dollars.''
In Manitoba, however, Health Canada is suing to recover $5 million from a
native centre that used counselling dollars to send
staff to the Caribbean and Hawaii.
About 14 B.C. natives attended $2,500 workshops in Hawaii last November.
Dr. Charles Brasfield, a North Vancouver psychiatrist who has treated
hundreds of native residential-school victims, says they
typically require lengthy one-on-one counselling, which Health Canada
refuses to pay for.
When bands spend money on quick-fix New Age therapies such as
Neurolinguistic Programming and something called
Psychology of Vision, he says, Health Canada looks the other way.
``Typically, these quick-fix money-makers try to get an aboriginal
`trainer' as a front,'' he said. ``We tried to warn medical
services how public money was being spent but they weren't interested.
``We're very concerned about the influx of these money-making quick-fix
therapies. They're very expensive and they're just
Agrees Vera Manuel, a Secwepemc playwright and qualified traditional
therapist: ``It's a feeding frenzy out there -- all kinds of
so-called therapists are coming out of the woodwork.
``These New Age therapies are becoming as oppressive to us as the first
wave of religion -- some of them are like cults. This
is not a good use of the small amount of money we have.''
Carole Dawson of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said she has complained
repeatedly to health and Indian affairs officials
about her impoverished Tsawataineuk reserve, on northern Vancouver Island,
paying for NLP workshops.
``They just don't listen,'' she said.
``Not only is this taxpayers' money being wasted, it's dangerous,
irrelevant drivel -- how does our social worker spending two
weeks in Hawaii help the people suffering on our reserve?''
Tsawataineuk social worker Charlene Dawson was among those who flew to
Hawaii in November for NLP ``training,'' for
which she says she borrowed $3,500 for airfare, hotel and meals ``that I'll
be paying off for years.''
The workshop, in Kona-Kailua on Hawaii, was put on by Nimpkish band member
Richard Hunt, who lives in Tsawwassen
and makes a comfortable living as an NLP ``master trainer.''
He didn't charge Dawson for the workshop. Instead, she agreed to promote
NLP workshops on reserves, where they would
be paid for with federal health dollars or Indian affairs dollars.
Dawson, a single mother of five, defended going to Hawaii: ``You're on a
big high -- Hawaii is so beautiful. But when you get
home, reality hits. It's a real let-down.'' Said elder Flora Dawson,
Carole's mother and a distant relative of Charlene: ``Elders
and home-care clients weren't really looked after while she was gone.''
The Neskainlith band near Chase paid $3,200 for two band members to attend,
which band social development director
Leigh Ann Edwards admitted is ``more than a third of our annual medical
services training money.''
``I don't understand NLP, but it's popular,'' she said. ``We prefer to fund
aboriginal counsellors here but it's hard.''
Hunt, 38, said he has given ``hundreds'' of paid sessions on reserves since
he became a ``master trainer'' in 1995.
He said he isn't concerned that NLP has little credibility among medical
experts: ``NLP by itself I agree might not be useful,
but I do use our aboriginal experience and the real kicker I use is called
timeline therapy.'' Timeline therapy is an NLP
technique to eliminate negative thoughts and emotions about previous events
in a person's life.
Asked about the ethics of charging cash-strapped bands thousands of dollars
for Hawaii workshops, Hunt replied angrily: ``I
didn't twist their arms or force them to come, did I?''
Turtle Island Native Network
Aboriginal News & Information