Saturday, October 18, 2008

Sri Sri Gets Cock-Blocked For A PP

File under: The Siddhi of PR

An Indian scholar visiting Oslo, Norway, and the Nobel Peace Prize Institute, sets the record straight for one Sri Sri Ravi Shankar fawner somehow associated with the Nobel Committee:
The Norwegian doctor had heard that this man had brought peace to Kashmir, and had promoted organic agriculture in thousands of Indian villages. She had been asked to promote his candidacy for the prize, and indeed the man himself had been to Oslo several times recently. She asked me if I would give my opinion on the matter.

“I answered that so far as I knew, there was no peace in Kashmir. I observed that what the West refers to as ‘organic farming’ we knew as rain-fed agriculture—and that this nothing new…. Finally, I suggested to the doctor that if not giving Gandhi the prize was a scandal, awarding it to my fellow townsman would be an even bigger scandal.”
Perform the due diligence, noble Nobel Peace Prize committee. It's about time someone did. I don't think all will be surprised at just how thinly this membrane of "worldwide NGO" is stretched, and where most of the fatty bits are landing. (Hello first-class seating!)

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44 Comments:

At 10/18/2008 11:06 PM, Anonymous Bhakta Shiromani said...

I partially agree and partially disagree with the Norwegian old lady. HH Sri Sri Ravishakarji Guruji Maharaj should not just be given the nobel prize for peace, he equally deserves Nobel prize in other areas especially Physics. Why you ask me. Okay let me tell you this. First Sri Sri should be given Nobel Prize in Physics because he explained the theory of relativity much better than Einstien so that even a faithful common devotee like me can understand. Sri Sri has explained that ‘If you are happy time seems to move fast and if you are sad time seems to move slow’. This shows clearly that time is relative. Einstien had to explain relativity using very difficult terms so much so that only a handful number of people could understand. Another nobel lautrette Bertrand Russel wrote the book ‘ABC of relativity’ so that more people can understand theory of relativity. But despite the well intentioned efforts of Mr Russel not many people still understand this theory. But with Sri Sri clearing all misconceptions anyone can understand the theory of relativity if they enroll and participate in the Art of Living Basic Course. If Einstien and Bertrand Russel would get nobel prize why not Sri Sri.

Some more facts which will clearly establish Sri Sri for the Physics nobel. Of all the subjects in school Sri Sri liked Physics. Sri Sri has made it very clear in many interview that physics is his favourite subject. I myself was priveleged to see one such interview in NDTV good times where Sri Sri mentioned he is a science student and he loves science especially physics. Look he says student even though he is a science genius. Disciples of Sri Sri have written that Sri Sri is a physics graduate from St Joseph college bangalore. Many of his distractors and stressful people with negative energy have proved that there are no records of Sri Sri getting a college degree as he dropped out of studies at the age of 17. But my question to these people is whether an academic degree in Physics is a requirement for a Nobel prize in physics. I disagree completely. These people should check the academic record of Einstien. And these so called intellectuals and secularists should check how much marks did Srinivas Ramanujam got in Mathematics in his 10th standard. He failed my dear ones. And look what a mathematician Ramanujam was.

Apart form Modern western science, Sri Sri also learnt vedic science under his teacher Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. It was Maharishiji who thought the vedic science of levitation. How much of difficulty people take to create Aeroplanes from using Bernouli’s principle to designs from wright brothers and boeing company. How much of difficulty western science had to undergo to create aeroplanes, pilots and air hostesses. But all that was simplified by Maharishiji through yogic flying. That apart vedic science also has secrets of weapons like Brahmastra, plastic surgery, metallurgy and so on. All these you can learn in Veda Vigyan Mahavidyapeeth established by Sri Sri Ravishankar.

Dear readers, it should now be clear to you all that Sri Sri deserves the Nobel Prize in physics apart from the Peace prize as the venerable norweigian lady suggested. Now here comes another one. Sri Sri should also get nobel prize in biology. Sri Sri has clearly proved that it takes less muscles to smile than be grumpy. The details will be shared in another post when Sri Sri is nominated for the Nobel Prize for Biology in 2010.

 
At 10/19/2008 6:50 AM, Anonymous Vikram said...

WTF?

 
At 10/19/2008 9:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think bhakta shiromani should fly from India to any country using Yogic Flying. Start today. It should be interesting to watch and read about in the news.

All the other claims of SSRS's greatness fall into the same category as this riduculous comparison that has been made in the post between yogic flying and airplane travel.

Just because you like someone, believe in their teaching, doesn't make them great for the rest of the world. And that lack of belief in others is not an indication of stress.

I'd like to see how much bhakta shiromani smiles if someone locks the precious SSRS up for his various crimes and indiscretions. Lots of muscles would get used for being grumpy, I suspect.

Mahesh Yogi, by the way, totally disowned SSRS for leaving him and starting his own ashram business.

Good luck to all who follow Art of Living. It is a sad group of people who put on a happy face.

 
At 10/19/2008 9:29 AM, Blogger CHUCK said...

Where would a lowly cowboy start in tryin to set you straight about She She and Mugharishi.... It just don't seem worth the effort, except to say the last time I saw She She, maybe 17-18 years ago, Mugharishi had sent duped stooges to his program to say in public that She She was a liar and a thief! She She sat on his little throne and came close to blubberin! I almost felt sorry for the sawed off runt of spirituality!

 
At 10/19/2008 9:22 PM, Anonymous Matt said...

Intercontinental yogic flying, meh.

The bar has been raised.

These days, the real test of an authentic guru is long-distance orgasms.

 
At 10/19/2008 9:23 PM, Blogger s e m b l a n c e said...

how about 'No Belle' price for being without sex? I pity the guy actually. How bout another one for economics with all the money thats raked in?

 
At 10/20/2008 8:22 AM, Blogger yomamma said...

by this logic this bhakta guy should get a pulitzer because he can write a lot of words, but say nothing of importance, just as you can bounce your ass off the floor many times but never really fly, gee, by the time you got to your destination you would have such a backache.

 
At 10/20/2008 10:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is no end to the greed and duplicity of AoL organization.

This weekend I was at India Festival in Richmond VA. I saw AoL stall there and could not resist my curiosity. I had done my basic course way back in 1996 in Bombay, then advanced course in 1997 in Bangalore, then wasted few more years and couple of thousand rupees before saying goodbye to AoL.

Anyway, one attractive volunteer with a beatific smile started educating me on the benefits of AoL. I told her that I had already done that course in Bombay in 1996. "That's great!", she told me. "Since you have already done the course, fee for repeating it here is just $30". I was shocked to hear this. Because when I had done this course in Bombay after paying Rs.1000 (which was a substantial amount for me that time), I was told that it was a one time life membership fee and anytime I wanted to repeat the course, it was free. Not that I had any desire to repeat the course but still it was a news to me. I raised this issue with the volunteer. She told me that $30 was not really the course fee but fees for issuing me a membership card (which was not given in 1996) and renewal charges to set me in their worldwide system.

To all the new AoL members reading this, I want to advice them to get away from AoL ASAP. This organization is very innovative in devising methods to suck the money from its members. I have nothing against sudarshan kriya. In fact I find it useful and effective to certain extent (just like any other yoga or pranayama technique is useful and effective). However, it is over priced, sold via manipulation and comes with unnecessary and useless packaging (like believing SSRS is God). If you are interested in yoga and pranayama, go to any Iyengar yoga center or (may be ask your YMCA instructor) and you can learn similar techniques much cheaper and without believing in your instructor as your God.

- Vishwanath Shankar

 
At 10/20/2008 6:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Vishwanath:

I have repeated basic course several times but never had to pay repeat charges. So please do not spread lies about our Guruji. And even if they asked for $30, why are you cribbing about that? People don't complain blowing up that money in a restaurant. But ask them to contribute to a worthy cause and they start whining. Do you know that Guruji does not take a single rupee out of the donation money? Everything goes to the poor and destitute children in India. He is running so many charities without seeking any fame or publicity. If you do not want to participate in his philanthropic activities, no one is forcing you. But at least don't discourage others who want to.

-- Vineet

 
At 10/20/2008 6:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reposting my own comments from churmuri:

It is all so simple to understand.

In Tamil , one of the synonyms for shit is er… ‘pee’ ( not a very decorous word …nevertheless )

This ” sonorous ” r. guha full of ” sound & fury ” is asking for precisely that for himself. As you might be aware india has been importing a lot of cowdung etc from European countries . As it slaughters all cows , cattle etc etc wholesale , r. guha is asking for that. And we people are needlessly investing him with some ‘ intellectual halo ‘ :))

Sarcasm off/

 
At 10/21/2008 3:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some folks did not catch the irony
in bhakta shiromani´s post.

 
At 10/21/2008 8:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Jody ,

I want to know
1)why & when did u started this blog ?
2) If you have any spiritual experience till date by following any other Guru if you have one?

 
At 10/21/2008 10:18 AM, Blogger jody said...

Do you know that Guruji does not take a single rupee out of the donation money? Everything goes to the poor and destitute children in India.

When they coined the phrase: "there's a sucker born every minute," you were just the person they were referring to.

 
At 10/22/2008 12:28 AM, Blogger jody said...

why did u start this blog ?

I saw that nondual realization doesn't make anyone anymore special than they already are. When confronted by gurus like Sri Sri, who do everything in their power to appear special, I saw a need to discriminate nondual truth from the ridiculous notions about it promulgated by big-time gurus looking to expand their business.

If you have any spiritual experience till date by following any other Guru if you have one?

Any experience, regardless of how your brain decides to tag it; spiritual, physical, or bathroom, has as much to do with your own nondual truth as my dog's ass. In other words, the only thing "spiritual" about a spiritual experience is your brain's unconsciously deciding it was spiritual.

I've always understood experience to be one thing: something that happens in our brain. This includes anything anyone calls "spiritual," IMO.

 
At 10/22/2008 12:43 AM, Anonymous Seeker said...

Jody,

I would like to share some of my experience when I was at Sri Sri's ashram for quite some time before Silver Jubilee .

You know there is so much energy in the ashram that u easily go into meditation. so what u will say about it?

Not only this, u can feel the energy in his presence, which i would like to call it as spiritual experience because it is not very common to feel such vibrations in some one's presence (even if we consider Sri Sri as a ordinary human being ...still it is something very special to feel such strong vibrations aroud him).

- Seeker

 
At 10/22/2008 1:30 AM, Anonymous Praveen K Rao said...

I want to bring in some facts for people who are wanting and working towards nominating Ravishankar to the Nobel prize.

I personally believe that rational secular humanism is what the world needs in the midst of all the insanity, violence and turbulence we see. And we all need to live in peace amidst all our differences.

I want to highlight here is Ravishankar’s response to the post godhra Gujarat riots where more than a thousand innocent men, women and children were mercilessly butchered. And trying to see whether he fits for the candidature for the Nobel Peace Prize (in its true spirit of creating tolerance and brotherhood among people. Not just beacase Yasser Arafat or Al gore got it and hence anyone can get it). Many thousands were rendered homeless in these riots. And yes these victims were Muslims. Please do not tell me about revenge and retribution that it all started by the killing of Hindus in Godhra. If that were the case why were innocent people killed.

During this time Ravishankar the self proclaimed peace maker found it convenient to publish a book on similarities between Hinduism and Islam. And what a book he published. He copied verbatim from the lunatic pseudo historian P.N.Oak on the Hindu influence and elements in Islam. Ravishankar’s book resorts to ‘deep punning’ association of Sanskrit words with the non Sanskrit words found in middle eastern cultures. He mentioned that Kabba is Kabbali another name of Shiva, Namaz means Namaha and Ramadhan means Rama Dhyana and many more such things. I do not have any problems with anyone claiming the above as each is entitled to their opinions and interpretations however inauthentic or false they may be. Ravishankar has published a similar book on Christianity also again borrowing from the pseudo scholarly works of P.N.Oak. Incidentally P.N.Oak has also written a book on Taj Mahal and has claimed that it is a Hindu temple – Tejo Mahalaya. That apart Oak who died last December was a harmless insane guy. But his works become harmful when it gets into the hands of self proclaimed godmen and peacemakers like Ravishankar.

Ravishankar’s book on Islam was distributed in Gujrat in the relief camps. Was this required. All it did was alienate the highly traumatized Muslim victims even more. I am questioning was this an enlightened and humanistic response. In light of this does he deserve the Nobel prize for peace. In what way did this bridge the divide between Hindus and Muslims other. This book just propogated the Hindu centric hindutva history which has no factual basis. Apart from this Ravishankar could not even substantiate the facts that he himself has authored – this clearly proved that he is a person without any intellectual honesty and integrity. And no wonder many people here question his other self proclaimed social work as duplicity and fraud has been evidenced in him quite openly.

 
At 10/22/2008 2:53 AM, Blogger jody said...

u can feel the energy in his presence

"Any idea that either hasn't been or isn't capable of being independently tested should be considered a personal vision."

And...

"A placebo effect is a false belief that has real value."

From On Being Certain, by Dr. Robert Burton

 
At 10/22/2008 3:15 AM, Anonymous Seeker said...

Jody,

I think there is a difference between placebo effect & feeling the energy around a person

 
At 10/22/2008 8:46 AM, Blogger jody said...

I think there is a difference between placebo effect & feeling the energy around a person

Opinion noted.

 
At 10/22/2008 2:42 PM, Blogger David said...

dear Bhakti Shiromani,

Get real..clear your head and please don't make God out of an individual who is just a human being and who is teaching a simple breathing technique.
When will we stop becoming fawning guru devotees with no brains.

 
At 10/22/2008 2:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Do you know that Guruji does not take a single rupee out of the donation money? Everything goes to the poor and destitute children in India."

Apart from the elementary school in the Bangalore Ashram campus, there is nothing that is provided free to poor and destitute children in India or anywhere else. Bangalore school gives education to about 250 students and if all the money collected by AoL was spent on these children, they would have been millionaires by now!

Don’t get me wrong. I am not claiming that AoL does not spend anything on philanthropic activities. It does. My point is that the amount collected by AoL to be (supposedly) spent on its charitable activities is egregiously disproportionate to actual charity work done by it. In any case, if they did not spend anything on charity, it would be difficult for them to extract money in the name of charity. So, they do have a share of token charity activities, which are hyped by their PR managers to attract more gullible people and more money.

The second thing about the organization is lack of transparency about their finances. If you have spent few years in AoL, you would remember ‘a dollar a day’ scheme floated circa year 2000. This was supposedly to build a fund to support underprivileged children in India. Do you still hear about this? This scheme vanished all of a sudden. No one knows what happened to the money collected in its name. My AoL teacher told me that the money was spent on other philanthropic activities such as tsunami relief etc. Is it not unethical? If the money was collected in the name of helping poor children, how can it be spent on any other cause (even if the other cause was also worthy)? May be I wanted to help poor children but I don’t want to contribute to tsunami victims. How can AoL take me for granted?

AoL has cultivated such powerful connections in media, that no one is willing to cross them. (Owner of “Times of India”, Sandhya Jain is an AoL devotee). Combine it with average Hindu’s reluctance to speak ill of any holy (?) man for fear of inviting sin, and you have the perfect recipe for AoL phenomenon.

- Vishwanath Shankar

 
At 10/22/2008 11:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been reading your blog for almost a year now but never posted a comment.

It is true that the environment in the Ashram is very very different from any where else. The peace and tranquility felt there is something that one who visits the place, cannot deny. Sitting in his presence alone can lead you to meditation.

While your harsh and sometimes nasty criticism seems biased, it is ok if you are skeptical about some of the things in Art of Living as they appear to an outsider. But, it would worthwhile experiencing yourself what this whole mass of people are raving about. Many of us were skeptics when we came in, may be as bad as you or even worse. However, we can deny all the world's claims/stories but cannot deny our own experiences of peace, bliss and love.

Organizations that develop around such personages, could have some apparent minor flaws specially as they are run by volunteer work force(like charging a small amount for repeating the course), but these flaws keep getting corrected with time. Do other formal organizations not have flaws including Governments. Does that mean they are all frauds ?

Some people do appear to be putting in a lot of effort on this blog to berate holy men. I would suggest, give your blog a chance. Why not make it an instrument to discover truth. You could start with some of the recommended practices on meditation. You will then yourself know what is the truth and will surely feel more fulfilled being in pursuit of truth.

 
At 10/23/2008 12:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

David, read the last paragraph of Bhakta´s
post. As I said, some folks did not catch the
irony.

 
At 10/23/2008 3:10 PM, Blogger Stuart said...

jody said...
Any experience, regardless of how your brain decides to tag it; spiritual, physical, or bathroom, has as much to do with your own nondual truth as my dog's ass. In other words, the only thing "spiritual" about a spiritual experience is your brain's unconsciously deciding it was spiritual.

I'd agree, though I'd say that "spiritual" is created by "thinking," rather than "brain." That is, "thinking" is what we experience directly, while "brain" is an idea we have about where this thinking originates.

In any case: If we understand "nondual truth" to be the substance of everything (like water is the substance of all waves), then whatever we're experiencing at this moment IS nondual truth. Even if what we're experiencing happens to be Jody's dog's ass!

Seeker said...
I think there is a difference between placebo effect & feeling the energy around a person

Lots of people think that way, but is it true? A "placebo" is a real effect that's dependent on your mindstate. You take an inert medicine, and precisely because of your beliefs and expectations about the medicine, it cures your depression (or whatever). That's distinguished from, e.g., getting burnt by fire, which will happen independently of any ideas you have about the fire.

It would seem that feeling energy around a person is very much a placebo effect, since it's never been demonstrated that such feelings are independent of the mindstate (beliefs and expectations) of the people who feel them.

Stuart
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/

 
At 10/23/2008 3:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The above clarification by Stuart is brilliant (as always).

About the placebo effect a vital caution.

Many try to treat it as inconsequential as something one internalises. And hence can deprogramme the same way.That is too glib & negligently shallow an approach.

Because both the doctor & godman resort to a person's * invasion of boundaries *.

Words also have different connotations for different people.When someone says " i want happiness" he might be referring to a whole lot of desires fulfilment in life. How much can these charlatans with a murky past empathise with?((?

There lies the danger.Hence Hindus' Vedha Dharmam offers the best solution.

As the Consecrated , Ancient Temples with a Sthala Puraanam behind it vouchsafes it to whoever the devotee beseeching be.

Our feelings, thoughts etc in *Para* form are known only to Our Maker. Hence called Parashakthi/Parameshwaran/ParapBrahmam/Vishnu and so on.

Though having lots of Names & Forms all of them belong to Him/HER.

That is why everyone has the liberty to address The Deity & ask for whatever. Even those who cannot go to the Temple can keep a photo/icon whatever & ask.

That is the SAFEST.

Unfortunately we are constrained to grow , live and contend with various kinds of people. Who pry , micromanage, control, thwart,poison , vitiate , forcing us to become martyrs etc.

Problems start there.

Why was Swami Lakshmananda willynilly embroiled in politics for which the irresponsible anarchic gorement of india is to be held accountable???

 
At 10/23/2008 4:15 PM, Blogger jody said...

It is true that the environment in the Ashram is very very different from any where else.

All entirely dependent on the beliefs of those present. IOW, if you want to believe it is different, then it will be different, but only out of your belief. I've found, as have a good number of those whose opinions that I respect, that the ashram is the world, and contains all the knowledge and ignorance found in the world, no more or less.

The peace and tranquility felt there is something that one who visits the place, cannot deny. Sitting in his presence alone can lead you to meditation.

Placebo effect noted.

it would worthwhile experiencing yourself what this whole mass of people are raving about.

I already know what they are raving about: nothing more than what has been suggested to them, and now that they've uncritically accepted those suggestions as fact, they've generated their own placebo effects.

we can deny all the world's claims/stories but cannot deny our own experiences of peace, bliss and love.

Placebo effects can be quite striking in their effectiveness.

these flaws keep getting corrected with time.

Dream on, buster!

Do other formal organizations not have flaws including Governments. Does that mean they are all frauds ?

Sri Sri and his org's claims that he is special are fraudulent, at least in regard to any nondual truth he may have realized. In other words, the realization of nondual does not make you special, and anyone who knows nondual truth knows this, unless they are flimflammers, which Sri Sri certainly appears to be when allowing his followers to makes claims about his so-called "divinity."

Some people do appear to be putting in a lot of effort on this blog to berate holy men.

Your laughable definition of "holy men" is noted.

You will then yourself know what is the truth and will surely feel more fulfilled being in pursuit of truth.

Your assumptions about what I know of spiritual truth have been noted as well.

 
At 10/23/2008 8:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is time we jettison this narcissistic ravishankar & his sycophants.

Annihilation of one's ossified ego is not that easy at all.

Avvaiyaar ( woman ) sumps up in brilliant words:

Seeing Holistically Is Vision.
Conquest of five senses is Virtue.

 
At 10/24/2008 7:00 AM, Anonymous ellen said...

'Dream on, buster!'

Apposite and acerbic comment, as always.

 
At 10/24/2008 8:06 AM, Anonymous Betty said...

Jody, can "love at first sight" happening between two people be explained by the placebo effect?

At this point in my life I tend to believe that all "spiritual experiences" are faith based but sometimes things happen unexpectedly, in a grocery store or upon first meeting someone you were not expecting to meet.

 
At 10/24/2008 12:00 PM, Anonymous vikram said...

While I agree with most of what jody has to say about the placebo effect, from what I have observed, it is not always so simple.

For example, let me cite the example of 3 people, including myself, who are / were involved with Nithyananda (said to have miraculous healing powers).

The first person is now a Swami of N's, who was permanently cured of a severe food allergy to bananas. This guy is a dyed-in-the-wool devotee, so we could explain the healing as a result of the placebo effect.

The second person was always a skeptic, and continues to regard N as a cheat. He suffers from anosmia (medical condition characterized by a complete lack of smell). During one darshan, N placed his hand on the fellow's head, and afterward, for about an hour, this guy developed an acute sense of smell almost rivaling that of a dogs! I am serious, he could smell the contents inside a closed jar of food! Now this was no hallucination, nor was it placebo effect. It eventually faded after a while.

The third case is my own. I have had severe food allergies since childhood. I asked Nithyananda to heal me. I had complete faith and trust. In his presence, I ate some food which would normally trigger a severe reaction, and despite continuous "healing", developed all the signs of the allergy. I even refused to get myself to an ER, believing the episode was a test of faith! At the time I believed I was cured, but my allergies still persist.

So how does one explain cures among those with a complete lack of faith, while the koolaid drinkers are not as lucky? I think this is not just a case of random, fluke chance. I know people who have experienced remarkable physical relief, which cannot be explained rationally, regardless of their faith, but at the same time, many who didn't experience a thing. Further studies are warranted :)

 
At 10/25/2008 12:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i suspect that the opeing post attributed to bhaktha shiromani is actualy from one of the regular guys just to kick up some fun. i dont think any sane person could write all that and mean it. im shattered, absolutely.

 
At 10/25/2008 1:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

this whole energy thingy needs alota investigation in my opinion . i think certain tantric practices can give one the ability to influence the chakras of others but that dosent mean they are realized beings.and spirituality isnt about peace n happiness as much it as about truth.

 
At 10/25/2008 6:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jody, you seem to have only one answer for all the points that I made and you responded to.........placebo effect'. Well, since you want to trash everything that is said by me, even if I say that it is 8am and there is sunlight around me, you'll say 'placebo effect'!!!

Give credit to the intelligence of millions (mostly highly educated)all over the globe who have felt their lives change by the Art of Living.

I repeat, it would be worthwhile if some of those on this blog who suffer from skepticism explore for themselves the truth that has been experienced by millions.

 
At 10/25/2008 12:00 PM, Blogger jody said...

Jody, you seem to have only one answer for all the points that I made

That's because the placebo effect is comprehensive. It covers ALL spiritual experience you believe you know or can imagine.

It's one of the maxims of this blog, which I will list here:

* It's not what you believe, it's how you believe it.

* Even really bad gurus can work great for the right devotee.

* All spiritual experience arises out of a placebo effect.

 
At 10/25/2008 1:59 PM, Blogger jody said...

* All spiritual experience arises out of a placebo effect.

I want to amend this one to something more like: all spiritual experience arises entirely within the context of our neurobiology.

 
At 10/26/2008 3:43 AM, Blogger yomamma said...

"I want to amend this one to something more like: all spiritual experience arises entirely within the context of our neurobiology."

well a lot of people want this, and so many practices encourage this constant messing around, even ones that claim to be non- dual. I think if people didn't suffer so much physically and mentally this might not be such a popular pass-time.

Hey Bhakta , Brevity is the soul of wit!

 
At 10/30/2008 8:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stuart said:
A "placebo" is a real effect that's dependent on your mindstate. You take an inert medicine, and precisely because of your beliefs and expectations about the medicine, it cures your depression (or whatever). That's distinguished from, e.g., getting burnt by fire, which will happen independently of any ideas you have about the fire.
I have read and heard about firewalkers who do not get burnt. My friend is in fact a firewalker. Many prescription medicines (such as Prozac) are not universally effective. Perhaps most people who take it get cured. Is that a placebo effect, then? These phenomena weaken the distinction between placebo and other effects. Perhaps double-blind studies need to done for energy around gurus to make the energy claims sounder.
Ammachi, while she allows wild claims to be made about her, when asked directly usually seems to attribute miraculous healing etc. to the person's faith.

 
At 10/30/2008 9:08 AM, Blogger jody said...

Ammachi, while she allows wild claims to be made about her, when asked directly usually seems to attribute miraculous healing etc. to the person's faith.

Exactly. A placebo effect.

She's not nearly as dishonest as Sri Sri, thank God.

 
At 10/30/2008 6:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jody, you seem to think that saying 'placebo effect' is rational and needs no further explanation. That is rather like the old lady who said "It's turtles all the way down!" to explain cause (search in Google if you don't know the reference) i.e. you are merely exchanging one unknown cause for another. How the placebo effect works is far from understood.

 
At 11/02/2008 1:03 PM, Blogger jody said...

How the placebo effect works is far from understood.

Yet it can still account for ALL spiritual experience. Indeed, it's the only intuitive explanation for why folks from all kinds of very different spiritual ideologies can all have what seem to them to be very real spiritual experiences.

 
At 11/21/2008 8:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jody believes that the placebo effect only applies to others' spiritual experiences with teachers that he believes are frauds, yet I'm sure he attributes his experiences with his spiritual teachers as authentic. You can't be a selective cynic, Jody!

 
At 11/21/2008 8:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bhakta's initial post in this comment section is so very painful to read. He sounds just like a TM pr robot even though he's talking about SSRS. I loved MMY and still practice TM and also do Sudarshan Kriya and love SSRS, but guys like Bhakta are just such an embarassment.

 
At 11/21/2008 9:01 AM, Blogger jody radzik said...

Jody believes that the placebo effect only applies to others' spiritual experiences with teachers that he believes are frauds

Untrue. All spiritual experience is a placebo effect, insofar as they are generated by an intersecting of belief and neurological readiness.

I'm sure he attributes his experiences with his spiritual teachers as authentic.

Neurons firing are neurons firing. It's either all authentic, or none of it is. What's happened to me is no more or less spiritual than what's happened to anyone else. From the regard of nondual truth, all experience, spiritual or otherwise, is equally meaningful, or meaningless.

You can't be a selective cynic, Jody!

I'm not cynical at all. You need a filter change.

 
At 12/30/2008 8:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

SSRS agreed not to publish further editions of the book on Islam (mentioned by one of the posters) after it was rubbished by Dr. Zakir Naik for not being a well researched book. Dr. Zakir Naik, who is a snake oil salesman himself, did this to SSRS. It is saddening to see people live in denial in spite of things like this happening all the time. One of the posters observed that a lot of AoL followers are highly intellectual and professional people. I agree, but the fact is, while these people will never make or tolerate such a dishonesty in their professions, they ignore it when their guru does it. Maybe this is why they have to turn their gurus into gods. Their intellect will never let them follow a dishonest man who demonstrates too often that he has lesser values than what they have. No sir, he has to be a god!

 

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