Thursday, April 27, 2006

March for the Peace Prize

File under: The Siddhi of PR

This year's march to obtain the Nobel Peace Prize for Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is in full swing, on point and apparently on fire in Southeast Asia:
Indian spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar drew huge crowds during his recent tour of Southeast and East Asia and was also honoured in Taiwan with an award for spreading his ideas on healthy living...

He was welcomed by top dignitaries in each of the countries he visited, apart from drawing huge crowds in his public appearances, said a press release issued here by his Art of Living Foundation.
That's huge crowds. Twice. That can only mean he finds an adoring public wherever he goes. What more could you want in a Nobel Peace Prize nominee?

Awards. Sri Sri is quite the collector of those:
In Taiwan, he was awarded the "Fervent Global Love of Life 2006" award by the Cultural and Education Foundation of Human Life. While honouring him, Chou Ta-Kuan, founder of the organisation said: "Over 30 million people in over 151 countries have been blessed with love and health from Guruji. Through his own actions, Sri Sri has shown us a way of life that brings out human values in all of us, which is beyond religion."
And the clouds broke, the birds flew and the sun of wisdom shone on them all.

But once he got to Hong Kong, Sri Sri had to get serious:
Addressing a large gathering in Hong Kong, Ravi Shankar expressed concern over the alarming level of domestic violence in the country. According to him, the city's rampant pursuit of material wealth had taken its toll on happiness levels.

He said: "I see a high stress level. There is social pressure, competition and to cope with this, people need to find inner strength. Material gain is okay, but not at the cost of your happiness. You need to find a balance, inner peace and happiness. I want to make people realise that life can be fun."
And all it will take to have some of that "fun" is a bit of that material gain, the more the better... for you of course.

We expect a lot more of this sort of thing, Sri Sri being made out as a saintly promoter of peace by his PR flacks while he shills his product in new markets. There's a lot of ground to cover between now and when they announce the Peace Prize winner. Even if he loses again, he'll still have the exposure and perhaps a better chance next year. At the very least, he'll have acquired a few more customers for that pranayama retread he calls the Sudarshan Kriya.

11 Comments:

At 4/28/2006 10:12 AM, Blogger dropsoflight said...

It is easy to be a know it all and judge callously the ascent of something....
have you met the man? have you given a shot to that Sudarshan Kriya Ms. Know-it-all? Have you seen the various rural projects that have benefitted millions in Inida, thousands in Mexico and South Africa or trauma relief camps that have brought back a good night sleep because of those breathing techniques?

If you must judge, first have a thorough investigation instead of spewing out bitterness.

 
At 4/28/2006 10:18 AM, Blogger jody said...

thousands in Mexico and South Africa or trauma relief camps that have brought back a good night sleep because of those breathing techniques?

You need to lay off those press releases, man. Too many too fast and the next thing you know you'll be believing Sri Sri can walk on water, too!

 
At 4/29/2006 7:10 AM, Blogger loneranger said...

jody is so right.....all the figures are cooked up .i'v seen SSRS doing that myself. even those maha-satsangs where thet claim millions attended. After the satsangs SSRS likes to sit with his cronies and discuss his 'performance'' and wants to know how many attended. all his cronies shout out different numbers and the guy who quotes the maximum, well, SSRS nods approvingly at him. and even a lay man can see that the numbers they are mentioning is way off target. so anonymous , look through the lies and false claims of SSRS and his AOL.

 
At 4/29/2006 8:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jody,

Sudarshan Kriya works for me.

 
At 4/29/2006 8:37 AM, Blogger jody said...

Sudarshan Kriya works for me.

So? Sri Sri took an exceedingly simple pranayama technique that was thousands of years old and repacked it for sale. Just because it works doesn't mean it's any better than any of the other original practices he didn't repackage which are available for free. It's not what you believe, it's how you believe it. Practically anything works when practiced sincerely.

 
At 4/29/2006 9:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stopped by your blog after a while.

Lots of people hero worship this man (but that's par for the course here in India). To me the one thing that stood out was that he was just another master of the art of recycling what is just plain commonsense.

Keep up the good work of exposing these exploiters of the human condition.

 
At 5/06/2006 7:05 PM, Blogger ontheotherhand said...

Drops of Light,

Get a life. You are clearly brainwashed by "Sri Sri" aka Ravi Shankar, aka Punditji, etc. etc. and so forth.

Have you seen all the people he has ruined? Have you seen elderly people giving up their life savings for a cheap, concrete one-room, badly built cottage in India at his ashram? Have you seen any of him closely at all? He is a deceiver of the first class. You can accuse Jody of not having a first-hand view of the man (that's right MAN, not AVATAR, as he would claim) but you can't say the same of me. Investigate him thoroughly yourself before you run around praising him. You obviously either don't know anything about this greedy little pervert, or you don't care who he fools and abuses.

Sorry to sound so harsh, but there you are.

At least I'm truthful. He would say in his idiotic, musical tones: "I don't knoooowww...." That's for sure.

 
At 5/17/2006 4:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ontheotherhand,

My interest is piqued by your comments. Can you please elaborate on them ?

I want to know more about this man, but all I could find on the web are writings by his brainwashed followers. The background info provided at AOL website is very sketchy - probably for obvious reasons.

I am always suspicious of all the Gurus. I did not pay any attention to SSRS until I took the 1st course offered by AOL on my friend's recommendation and insistence. The instructor and most of the students appeared thoroughly brainwashed.

Claims were made by the instructore how "Guruji" came up with Sudarshan Kriya after 10 days of silence. To me, it is old knowledge packaged differently. So are his "nuggets" of knowledge.

 
At 6/02/2006 4:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been reading the blogs on this site for some time now. And I just wanted to share my personal experience of Sri Sri and Art of Living.

I don't claim to have spent a lot of time with Sri Sri. I haven't travelled with him nor has he visited my home.

But he has brought about a change in me and my life, which has never happened before I met him.

Just meeting him, for the first time healed so many hurts in my life, all my life I had felt a lack of love, and just looking into his eyes for 1 moment healed all the old wounds.

And this is not the only experience. I have been associated with AOL for 3 years now, and so many times, I have felt like my entire life has been transformed.

And for those who say what change the Silver Jubilee Celebrations made. It made my mind much more silent and still. It brought about a remarkable peace into my life.
I can talk only about my own experience.

OnTheOtherHand, I'm not going to judge what you felt, because I have no right to do that, nor do I have the ability.

But I do want the people who come to this website to read not only about the negative, but about the positive as well.

And let them have their own experience.

 
At 6/02/2006 4:36 PM, Blogger jody said...

he has brought about a change in me and my life, which has never happened before I met him.

All of what you describe could have come from anybody posing as a guru. Bad gurus work great for good people. It's much more a product of your own faith than it is in any power of Sri Sri's or his teachings. His whole satsang depends on this placebo effect to get folks to believe he is doing something.

If he was anything near what he promotes himself as, he'd be telling you all this himself. But that would put him out of business, and it's the guru business that possesses Sri Sri, rather than the business of being an authentic guru.

 
At 8/11/2006 7:20 AM, Anonymous ME N MY GOD said...

Yes SSRS is a perfect business man . Nothing wrong what he teaches . Dont we appreciate Bill gates. But when you buy microsoft products you get valve for money.
And when you pay or buy from AOL or guruji you get nothing and you are told you faith in not strong. SO you pay for nothing and you are blamed . In your name he charges you 5000 rs to do pooja and he gets the credit and does not take your name for pooja.

 

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