Guruphiliac: Sri Sri's Inflation Unabated

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Sri Sri's Inflation Unabated

File under: The Siddhi of PR and Gurus Clockin' Dollars

Still flush with the success of his Art of Living's "Silver Jubilee," Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is gellin'... and once again there are reports his of Nobel Peace Prize nom. We reported a few months back that he got some U.S. congressman with a lot of Indian folks in his district to do the favor of the nomination.

And just like before, Sri Sri is up against the likes of U2's Bono and LiveAid's Bob Geldolf–and all by being the little yogi who could. He took a few common breathing exercises and turned them into a multinational yoga concern and massive non-governmental agency [read: grant vacuum.]

Because Sri Sri plays the charity game as well as any other guru, he's got the public eating out of his hand. All the popularity of an Ammachi with none of the back breaking hugging. Nonetheless, that popularity is still translating into stacking cheese in a bank vault.

Welcome to the Sri Sri Nobel Peace Watch of 2006. Due to the his tireless self-promotion, we're sure to have plenty to discuss and analyze as the AoL PR juggernaut goes into "look at our living saint" mode. Expect grandstanding at places of political strife and wherever disaster strikes.

The needs of people to have an omnipotent space daddy in command of their lives assures Sri Sri's continued success. That is... until he gets caught not being able to keep it in his pants. That's certainly not the only way he might fall, but statistically it's the most likely.


At 2/27/2006 7:37 PM, Blogger Videos by Professor Howdy said...

We work like a horse.
We eat like a pig.
We like to play chicken.
You can get someone's goat.
We can be as slippery as a snake.
We get dog tired.
We can be as quiet as a mouse.
We can be as quick as a cat.
Some of us are as strong as an ox.
People try to buffalo others.
Some are as ugly as a toad.
We can be as gentle as a lamb.
Sometimes we are as happy as a lark.
Some of us drink like a fish.
We can be as proud as a peacock.
A few of us are as hairy as a gorilla.
You can get a frog in your throat.
We can be a lone wolf.
But I'm having a whale of a time!

You have a riveting web log
and undoubtedly must have
atypical & quiescent potential
for your intended readership.
May I suggest that you do
everything in your power to
honor your encyclopedic/omniscient
Designer/Architect as well
as your revering audience.
As soon as we acknowledge
this Supreme Designer/Architect,
Who has erected the beauteous
fabric of the universe, our minds
must necessarily be ravished with
wonder at this infinate goodness,
wisdom and power.

Please remember to never
restrict anyone's opportunities
for ascertaining uninterrupted
existence for their quintessence.

There is a time for everything,
a season for every activity
under heaven. A time to be
born and a time to die. A
time to plant and a time to
harvest. A time to kill and
a time to heal. A time to
tear down and a time to
rebuild. A time to cry and
a time to laugh. A time to
grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones
and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a
time to turn away. A time to
search and a time to lose.
A time to keep and a time to
throw away. A time to tear
and a time to mend. A time
to be quiet and a time to
speak up. A time to love
and a time to hate. A time
for war and a time for peace.

Best wishes for continued ascendancy,
Dr. Howdy

P.S. One thing of which I am sure is
that the common culture of my youth
is gone for good. It was hollowed out
by the rise of ethnic "identity politics,"
then splintered beyond hope of repair
by the emergence of the web-based
technologies that so maximized and
facilitated cultural choice as to make
the broad-based offerings of the old
mass media look bland and unchallenging
by comparison."

At 2/28/2006 8:03 AM, Blogger CHUCK said...

What the hell you sayin', thought and humor? I cain't understand word one of what u say. Could u repeat that, please?

At 3/01/2006 11:47 AM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

This is so unfair to Sri Ravi Shankar... They say that what you're telling are just lies.

Of course they are. Every successful public figure has a squad of PR spinsters to counteract the less than flattering truths that leak out.

Please be respectful to a living Saint.

Sri Sri is no more a living saint than my dog. He is a successful public figure, more akin to a politician or an industrialist rather than any kind of "saint."

At 3/02/2006 11:51 AM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

Jesus spent time with prostitutes and Ramakrishna is now said to have been sexually attracted to his male devotees. Would not Jody file them under “hands where they don’t belong”?

If there was an attempted coverup, they'd get the same treatment any other guru gets here, and I say this as a long time initiate in the Ramakrishna lineage.

Might not Jody just print these accusations without finding out the truth?

The "truth" about Sri Sri is right there in the news every week. He's been caught in hypocrisy on many occasions. He is an unrepentant self-promoter and grandstander. And then on top of all this we have the testimony of ontheotherhand.

When all is said and done, Sri Sri is just another self-aggrandizing satscammer. A little man who found a way to be big by repackaging ancient practices and then acting saintly in the dissemination of them, ending up with millions in the process.

At 3/02/2006 1:09 PM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

Jody, wouldn't you say there has been an attempt to coverup the stories about Ramakrishna?

That's called hagiography. It's systematic and happens whenever there's a person who is or has been alive who is considered to be a saint. You yourself are a progenitor and promoter of the hagiography developing around Sri Sri.

You yourself have glazed over the "mistakes" of Rajneesh by declaring that he wasn't involved in these things and didn't know.

I have done no such thing. I've merely stated that Osho's hands-off approach is what got him in trouble. I have no idea as to what he did and did not know, yet I still respect the fact that he was experimental in his approach... despite his management troubles.

I have found that hypocrisy is often subjective and that often those who point the finger are hypocrits themselves.

Sri Sri failed to censure a genocidal politician by saying he doesn't comment on individuals, but when the Pope died, he decided it was now ok to comment on individuals.

I am wondering if there has ever been a Saint or Sage who could stand up to the critical light you judge the living by.

No, there is not. The ideas of "Saint" and "Sage" as you characterize them are false and based in the myths and superstitions of Hinduism rather than the actual facts of the lives of these individuals.

If Ramakrishna can't be trusted, who can be?

Ramakrishna's homoerotic desires do not make him less of a spiritual savant in my eyes. Every saint and sinner poops on the same pot. That's the message this blog is trying to present, that self-realization and enlightenment do not excuse one from their humanity. Behind every such person you'll find just another fool on the bus, just like the rest of us.

At 3/02/2006 2:05 PM, Blogger CHUCK said...

She-sheila said,

"Most of the people who write to this blog seem very unintelligent, like “don’tbullme”, "facedog" and “chuck”."

Wait a minute. Howcome I'm getting dragged into this mess? Maybe Sheila is really She She, himself. I may not be rich enough to hang out with SS, but that doesn't make me unintelligent. And frankly I think dontbullme is expressing himself very well. He's not as smart as Jody but he aint no dog's ass.

You take that back, She-Sheila!

At 3/02/2006 2:38 PM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

To me, even if I’m beginning to revere Sri Ravi Shankar less than I did before, this is not much to brand someone a hypocrite

Sri Sri, being watched by the entire Indian media, demures from calling out a genocidal politician by using the excuse that he doesn't comment on individuals. He then comments on the death of the individiual known as the pope. Both actions were politically motiviated, and taken together, are clearly hypocritical.

It seems to me that you have set ideas about what constitutes a saint or sage, behavior-wise.

It's quite the opposite. So-called saints and sages will exhibit all the behaviors all the rest of us do. My problem isn't with their behaviors, it's with their and their devotees' denials of these behaviors.

There might have been a price to pay for criticizing this politician that was too great to pay for Sri Sri.

Of course there was. He would have lost a good deal of his Hindu fundamentalist base. But claiming to be a pacifist while kowtowing to the genocidal right makes him a hypocrite, not a saint.

At 3/02/2006 3:00 PM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

Sheila, I'm not suggesting that you abandon Sri Sri as your guru. In fact, I believe that completely false gurus can be every bit as effective as utterly true ones. It's not what the guru has or doesn't have, it's all in the faith of the devotee. That's where all the power of the guru/chela dyad lies.

All I'm saying is that Sri Sri is just another person trying to get ahead in the world, much more so than the saintly figure he's attempting to portray himself as. I'd contend that all gurus are such, just people making their way in the world with a marketing plan. It just so happens that to be a guru, you have to market yourself as a saint. What I'm saying is that if you just pull up the dhoti a bit and look underneath, you'll find just another person, not the being of limitless light they want and are expected to be seen as.

At 3/02/2006 3:40 PM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

I question the enlightenment of a man who says things like: "I have entered the bodies of 240 people on the planet and I am controlling them 85%. They have only 15% of their own personalities left".

Given the fact that enlightenment obliterates the person who would be entering any bodies, I'd say the statement makes the declaration in boldfaced and italicized type: Sri Sri is no more enlightened than my dog's ass.

I don't think people coming to this blog are following Jody

While I gladly offer my thoughts and opinions to whoever asks, I shudder at the thought of being followed the way people follow Sri Sri. If I was, I'd grab the nearest hottie and do her sixteen ways to Heaven and Hell just to get myself out of it.

you must admit his sense of humor is good

Thanks, otoh. But I can't even lay claim to my sense of humor as it is only a very weak facsimile of that of my snarkster guru, Mark Lisanti of Defamer.

At 3/02/2006 3:52 PM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

Is there any living teacher that you do respect?

I'm cool with my guru, but he's every bit as unfamous as all these other gurus are famous. I'm a bit more ok with Ammachi than Sri Sri, Sai Baba or the Kracki, but I still find major problems with her message and its delivery. I like what Adyashanti has to say, and I enjoy the honesty of Wayne Liquorman. But most of the "gurus" I respect have little or no following whatsoever. They're just folks who have come to self-realization who are just chopping wood and carrying water. They've made no attempt to capitalize on their understanding, and quietly offer their wisdom to a few folks by way of various online forums and email lists.

At 3/02/2006 5:14 PM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

Submission is a key component in the learning of anything, but even more so in the Guru/disciple relationship.

If a guru expects submission, I would run a million miles an hour in the opposite direction. My guru has never asked for submission (maybe because he realizes he would never get it from me.)

In my opinion, a true guru would never expect submission, and would allow open and honest inquiry about the teachings each and every step of the way.

From reading over many of the reports on this site, the general feeling I come away with is that there are no worthy teachers, no enlightened beings, noone who can be trusted with one’s heart.

You can trust a guru with your heart, but you better do it with your eyes closed if you expect perfectly saintly behavior at all times with no exception.

As I said, it's way more about your faith than it is about the power of the guru. That begs the question: why rely on a guru in the first place? Enlightenment is not a disease you catch (a la the Kracki's "deeksha"), it's an understanding that arises spontaneously, at its own bidding. The value of the guru is to confirm this for you, not grant it to you. He or she cannot gift you with realization, and if they say that they can, they can automatically be looked upon as fraudulent.

Do you follow any teaching or teacher now, on the other hand, or are you too bitter?

I am a student of Ramakrishna and Vivekananda, with some compensation for the difference in era and their human dimensions. In other words, I don't follow their teachings blindly, but I employ them as starting points and reach my own conclusions based upon my own life's observations and realizations.

Were I to recommend a guru, I might venture to put Ammachi up for nomination, but with many provisos. Adyashanti would get a vote from me, as would the underground gurus I communicate with online. I could put you in touch with one of these if you sent an email to

At 3/06/2006 9:05 AM, Blogger CHUCK said...

Let's put Cisco in a room with my Molly and see how long he maintains his pretense of celibacy. I've heard that Cisco is a womanizer and dominates the other neighborhood dogs. And if he's such a saint, why does he need Bobby creating myths about him? All in all I'd have to rate SS at least as highly as Cisco.

At 3/06/2006 8:07 PM, Blogger CHUCK said...

Thaks otoh. Other than Sheila who apologized to you and don't bull me, but not to me, you are the first to acknoledge my existence!

At 9/22/2006 5:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I may not be as fluent as u guys.
little knowledge of spirituality is bein displayed includin Sheila.

Spirituality is no joke. follow any guru u wish to and write thesis on them. Is is a v sacred bond and dealt with reverence.
Submission that Sheila mentions, is not demanded. and a guru will never say that. it might be one hears (drawin inference from somethin not explicit*)what he wanted to hear like 'submission' which is connoted negatively in english. Shraddha' is the wrd which is akin to devotion.
1000s of gurus are not jokers, they live and practice 'tapasya' all their lives to gain knowledge.
only reason a guru wld commoditise,
to moderate rising tension and entropy. n chosen ones know who they are. speculation is human tendency. that is why spiituality iss needed. might sound fantasy, but then u wld need to know what is enlightenment (nothin comes easy)and connection with sciptures. those who know will never tell but fiddle ur conscience to put u on path. I am sorry u got threatenin calls. those guys are not good lest they hav drawn a line somewhere and *

and yes every guru is diff.
I can reach US in hundred ways.

Sorry if i interrupted a pvt chat.


At 9/29/2007 8:32 AM, Blogger Hemanth said...

Please dont write all your shir crap about sri sri..he is a great man. my life has really changed once I joined art of living. there are millions of people who had this change. and people are not fools here who simply believe you with knowing completely about sri sri..people like you on earth are very dangerous. please stop all your nonsense..if you want write something write good but dont write bad about others with out any knowledge...I REQUEST YOU ALL NOT BELEIVE WAT THEY PRESENTED HERE. PLEASE DO THE ART OF LIVING COURSE. ITS AN AMAZING COURSE. MILLIONS OF PEOPLE GOT TRANSFORMED.

At 10/18/2007 12:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hems said...
"Please dont write all your shir crap about sri sri..he is a great man. my life has really changed once I joined art of living. there are millions of people who had this change. and people are not fools here who simply believe you with knowing completely about sri sri..people like you on earth are very dangerous. please stop all your nonsense..if you want write something write good but dont write bad about others with out any knowledge...I REQUEST YOU ALL NOT BELEIVE WAT THEY PRESENTED HERE. PLEASE DO THE ART OF LIVING COURSE. ITS AN AMAZING COURSE. MILLIONS OF PEOPLE GOT TRANSFORMED"

Hems-- millions of people? the needy & the ones who search always get suckered.. The people who have written the earlier remarks make articulate statments and arguments. Why are you so enraged?

Passion is right, but it has to be coherent.

At 5/09/2008 10:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have known Guruji Sri Sri for many years. I completely support Shelia.

Wonder why falseguru, dontbullme, jody have lots to say, but no proof (or proof cannot be given)....well...jealous ?

At 7/09/2008 10:04 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

I attended his seminar in Raleigh day before yesterday (had attended one in Charlotte a few years ago). It was a gross waste of time & $50- there was a Horrible master of ceremonies who used the same bromides that one could choke on - life transformed, people asking her how she juggled job, family etc ,and worst of all :(describing SSRS) the man, the machine and the phenomenon. Just horrible.
The President of Art of Living was there some Mike Fishman - he practically begged for an applause :"I am the President of AOL, I deserve better applause." These are his exact words.
Then there was a a guy doing "chair" yoga.
There was a claimed 45 min meditation ( it was 25 mins in reality) lead by the guru himself.
Rest of the "seminar" was pretty much just question & answer session. The volunteer running the index cards, pencils were the only saving grace of the evening.
Folks : save your money.

At 3/03/2010 9:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

U can wake someone who is sleeping, u cant wake someone who is pretending to sleep..... If u like his preaching follow him its ur will, who cares......One who seeks true knowledge can find it them, u don't always need a guru unless u seriously lack logical precision in thinking.....

At 7/18/2010 2:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you judge him from a distance, you would find him like a quack probably, but when you get involved, your perspective changes. Sri Sri is like God. He is amazing grace personfied, divinity personified, ocean of bliss. May God bless him and may he guide us all.

At 7/18/2010 2:34 AM, Blogger guruphiliac said...

One day you will look back on this statement and wonder how you became so duped that you were able to make it.


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