Sri Sri: A List Of Wrong
File under: Gurubusting and Satscams
Recent commenters have suggested we lack proof to support our critique of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and AoL. But since it's his claims of divinity we're critiquing, the proof is right there in front of us as the culture of guru worship as it exists in AoL.
But then came Yunis, author of the new and excellent Answering AoL blog, who's put together a little list of some of the sins of Sri Sri:
* Saying that the effect of SK has been scientifically proven while it is not (or at least not the effects they mention).Yunis is like us, only researchier.
* Not mentioning his guru (Maharishi) and evading questions about him until he is death.
* Writing a book about Islam as a Hindu spiritual figure that is full of mistakes and thus doing something very dangerous in a country like India where tensions are high enough about these topics (and admitting that this book "was written in a hurry" only goes to show how not enlightened he is, 'cause anyone who is the least bit enlightened would never ever write a book about that topic 'in a hurry' when it is to be published in India.)
* Organising NGO summits about that turn out to be complete scams.
* Claiming that "his organisation is working in poor rural communities to promote sustainable growth, and has reached more than 30,000 villages." Although this leads to the hopelessly absurd and impossible fact that in 11 years (or 4015 days) the Association for Human Values would have "reached out" (by which is meant: teaching and promoting organic farming, irrigation techniques, water harvesting development programs, drainage system development, etc.) to an average of more than 7 villages every day.
* A complete lack of transparency in financial dealings although millions of dollars are concerned. (Certainly if they should be able to "reach out" to 7 villages a day.)
* Saying that all the money goes to development courses although a taxfile of 2005 reports total revenues of $3.2M coming from giving courses while none of the money went towards international developmental or humanitarian programs, disaster relief, scientific/medical research or charitable activity. (So apparently they don't need the money of the richest part of the world to "reach out" to the poorest part.)
* Claiming to be in the tradition of Gandhi while his acts and words are (provably) far from it.
Also, a word to the TM™ faithful: we predict Sri Sri is coming to take as many devotees from his former mentor as he can muster.