Guruphiliac: June 2009

Friday, June 26, 2009

Maya's A Bitch—A Blow-by-Blow Of The Latest Blow To Prakashanand's Status As Ruler of Maya

File under: Gurubusting, Gurus Doin' TIme, Hands Where They Don't Belong and The Siddhi of PR

[Ed.note: We just love it when an insider comes through with the straight skinny. All are invited to fill us in on the shenanigans of their present or former gurus. Much thanks to the soul who's provided today's tasty treat covering a Gp fave, Swami Prakashaka BOOM!]

By a Former Barsana Dham Ashram Resident

How much does it cost to have some highfaluting lawyers appeal a judge's ruling in the Texas Court of Appeals? Estimates range from $75,000 and $100,000. For that kind of money you would think that maya would bend a little to a swami's demands. But no such luck. On Wednesday June 24th, Prakashanand Saraswati was thwarted for the third time in his efforts to return to his 250-some-acre, multi-million-dollar ashram southwest of Austin.

He's been blocked from entering his former sanctuary since May 3rd, 2008, by his own agreement with the court after he was arrested on 20 counts of indecency with two children who grew up there.

On the day Prakashanand's legal "team" made their plea to the Texas Court of Appeals, they repeated one mantra over and over to the three judges: "Barsana Dham has 54 adult residents and no children." (I wonder if they were using japa beads?)

What an odd refrain. And an obvious stretch of the truth. While it's true that no children "live" there, plenty visit and stay overnight in the ashram's many guest quarters. Plus, one regular teenage visitor sleeps in the temple in a room roughly 100 yards from Prakashanand's bedroom door. What's more, Barsana Dham holds "Family Camps" a couple of times a year -- during which many families, including their children, spend several nights. And there are children running around the place on any given day of the week and during holidays. The place is a kid magnet!

Is that why an accused pedophile wants back inside his ashram? I don't know the answer to that (though I can guess). But one has to wonder why he would spend so much time and money trying to get back into this particular piece of God's green earth before his trial—where he can allegedly prove his innocence and get on with his life.

After all, the man has multiple other homes around the world. He's got three suites in three ashrams in India, one in New Zealand, and one in LA. He can stay in any devotee's home anywhere he travels. Why, oh why, does he need so desperately to be back in Barsana Dham?

There is only one reason: Keeping the myth alive.

I mean, come on: How must it look that a God-realized Saint cannot control maya? How must it appear to those 54 residents that their Lord and master is so powerless? How must it look to new people that the guru can't even appear in the flesh in his own ashram?

In the motion to the Court of Appeals, filed in January 2009, Prakashanand's lawyers claimed that by not allowing him into Barsana Dham, the court "violated his rights under the First, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution." They cried that he was deprived of practicing his faith. Oh. My. God.

Hey, Prakashanand, I thought you taught us to practice titiksha and do our devotions every second of every day no matter if we are hungry, cold, hot, sick, or whatever. Come on, buddy. A little practice-what-you-preach would be nice.

Oh and I love that this man is suddenly so keen on his own rights under U.S. law—meanwhile, has no qualms about breaking them to suit his, uh, needs.

Meanwhile, back in May 2008, at his first hearing, Prakashanand's lawyers asked the Hays County Judge to amend the conditions of his bond, asking for the return of his passport, the reduction of his bond, and for access back into Barsana Dham. They added: "We'd like to focus on the returning of the passport and travel to India as a change in conditions."

After a few minutes of deliberation in the judge's chambers, both parties agreed that he could have his passport back, but have no further access inside of Barsana Dham (because that's where the crimes allegedly occurred). When they returned to the courtroom, the judge stated clearly: "[J]ust for the record, the passport will be returned with the additional conditions that you have agreed on, including the new bond" (which was $10 million to ensure his return for the trial). Prakashanand's counsel responded, "That's correct, Your Honor."

Famous last words. By August 20th, his lawyers were back in the courtroom begging for their client's access to Barsana Dham. The judge said "no." They tried again on Sept. 29th. The judge again said "no." So it was off to the Court of Appeals. And the resulting third blow to Prakashanand's status as controller of maya.

My favorite line of the Texas Court of Appeals oral argument is this: "Appellant's (Prakashanand's) inability to return to Barsana Dham was no less a hindrance to his ability to practice his religion or associate with his followers in May than it was in August, or than it is today."

OH, BURN! Chief Justice of the Texas Court of Appeals, J. Woodfin Jones, do you know who you just smacked down? May I touch your feet?

What I really love, what really brings a smile to my face, what is truly a great practical joke by God—is that every time Prakashanand is driven to his way-more-modest Austin-area residence (in a devotee's home 2.5 miles down the road on RR 1826), he has to drive right past his resplendent Barsana Dham ashram.

Oh what a cruel, cruel world. ;-)

[Ed.note: Check this out for a bit more exposure of the hijinks at Barsana Dham, and at the mother org, Jagadguru Kripalu Parishat.]

Labels: , , ,

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Amma's Love Comes To Get Us, Kali's Comes Raging Back

File under: The Siddhi of PR

This is what Amma's love is doing to us right now:
After reading through Jody Radzik’s posts on Google Groups (under his name “Jodyrrr”), it became apparent to me that he has a compulsive need to be “right”. Jody trashed and bashed anyone who dissented with him and accused them of “projecting” and having “uninformed opinions”. Although Jody ranted about realization (claiming he is self-realized), he broke down into shrieking hissy fits, labeling (or is it “projecting”) others as being “stupid and crass”. Sri Sri Jodyrrr (the self-professed Saint and Mahatma) exhibited (and continues to exhibit) the behaviors of ordinary, over-emotional and non-realized humans.
What do we keep telling y'all? Enlightened or not, we all poop on the same pot. It's interesting how the authors are accusing us of claiming to know what we're talking about as a way to attack our credibility.

Thank God we've little reason to take exception to any of this, except for this one little bit:
Apparently, Jody Radzik converses with Mother Kali on a regular basis and hears her voice in his head. Sounds rather spooky, if you ask me.
Besides being one of the only claims about us without a reference to back it up, it's just plain untrue. The author is either accidentally or purposefully conflating our description of a guru (who happened to be an Ammachi devotee) we followed for a few months in 1999, who did claim to hear the voice of Mother Kali. In fact, that was the main reason we left his satsang, we couldn't get with what "Mother" was "telling" him.

Other than that, this is a well-researched piece. We regard it as a recognition of our good work that the authors took so much care in putting it together. Truly a wonderful example of Ammachi's love in action.

PS: Swami C. isn't our guru; he's just a friend.

Update: Kali's love comes raging back to counteract Amma's love in the form of this counter-counter-protest site, just announced today:
The creation of this website which attacks the critics of Ammachi does nothing more than prove what many of us have been starting to realize: The "hugging saint" and those who follow her are not as peaceful and loving as they would have you believe. Keep an eye on that website to see how devotees of Ammachi behave toward those who have been outspoken about the organization. We will also keep track of the site and will post anything relevant here. We have read many times that critics of Ammachi have been attacked in the past, but this new website really shows and proves their behavior.
We swear on Ma's luscious Lotus Feet that we do not have anything to do with this website, and we have no idea who the author is, either. But the turban comes off and gets thrown on the floor again this week for another fine piece of work.

Update: Today we were informed that the Cult of the Hugging Saint website is back up on the net.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

This Makes Our Self Peaceful

File under: Blogs of Note and Gurubusting

Our Twitter pal Clara Lum turned us on to The Peaceful yesterday. What a blockbuster!
According to this 'awakened guy,' your reward for finally awakening to “truth,” is to learn how to become more "passionate" about the illusion, but only because you're "awakening" is a "non-dual state of consciousness." Now you can blissfully have your cake and eat it too, because there are two forms of "enlightenment" and "the mystics were only half right."

Stupid mystics!

Being is boring, but “becoming” is where it's at, yo!

Good grief, “Two forms of enlightenment”? Really!? I always thought enlightenment was about “awakening” from the illusion to realize truth - one and done!

But not for the “Dream Police.” In fact, for the Dream Police ('awakened guys') there are hundreds of enlightenment "forms." In fact, there are levels and degrees, stages, tiers, quadrants, states, etc, etc, etc, on and on, ad infinitum.

The Dream Police recognize that we live in a postmodern technological 'world' that thrives on conspicuous consumption and, as discriminating consumers, we should have as many “enlightenment” products that the 'dream' can offer...
It's so gratifying to encounter this kind of clarity in a world of ever-increasing occlusion and ignorance about spiritual truth. The author of The Peaceful is keeping a very low profile, which is like a spoonful of sugar on top of five scoops of ice cream. The turban comes off and gets stomped into the good green Earth for this guy.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Lord Of The Universe Failure

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

This just in:
The Lord of the Universe (also known as Maharaji, Guru Maharaj Ji, The Anointed One, The Perfect One or quite simply as Prem Rawat) has finally lost control of prime virtual real estate. Specifically he has lost control of his beloved Wikipedia article about himself. You may remember that one of his right hand men, Mr. Jossi Fresco, managed to gain senior honcho status over at Wikiland and thus able to exert undue influence on his beloved Guru's Wiki entry. That was then and now is now. After being named and shamed back in April 2009, Mr. Fresco could not resist the temptation of interfering, this time by creating and deceptively using a different Wiki account, known in the trade as a sock puppet. But I think he has acted like a gambler just before closing time of the casino, losing all. Check out how Mr. Fresco has been rumbled.

The Lord of the Universe must be spitting nails over at his Malibu mansion. But then again perhaps he no longer cares, choosing instead to drown his frustrations in yet another bottle of his beloved cognac.
Poor Prem. We guess he's going to have to take his cognac aloft and burn another couple hundred tons of Jet A in his $60 million dollar private jet to soothe his battered image.

Labels: , ,

Monday, June 15, 2009

Speaking On The Squat

File under: Gurubusting and The Siddhi of PR

Tonight, our pal Doug Rushkoff had us on this radio show. Check it out here.

At one point in the interview, we take a stand against the "pathologization of thought" as represented by the ideas of Eckhart Tolle. For those who care, we're not denying the existence of pathological thinking, we are simply pointing out that the act of thinking itself does not impede the flow of awareness; it's attachment to thought that subverts.

At any rate, thanks to Dougji for the opportunity to spread the Gp gospel a bit.

Labels: ,

Monday, June 01, 2009

Dahn Going Down In Arizona

File under: Gurubusting, The Siddhi of PR

It was only a matter of time, after all the other trouble they've been causing, but it looks like Dahn Yoga, a breathing cult from Korea, is starting an inevitable slide toward extinction (or a radical reinvention) in the States:
Dahn Yoga claims it can ease your stress, even heal your ailments. Dahn Yoga operates more than 130 centers across the U.S.

A new lawsuit filed on behalf of 26 former Dahn members alleges the organization subjects its members to “psychological manipulation”.

Experts say this organization fits the definition of a cult, adding that the accusations made in the 53-page lawsuit are not new.

Steve Hassan is a cult expert with more than 30 years of experience. The ABC15 Investigators spoke with him on camera in 2007.

“It’s a destructive, deceptive, mind control cult,” Hassan said.

He said he’s counseled more than 15 former Dahn followers.
It's a cult that gets pretty juicy in the middle:
Former members call these rituals “spiritual surgery” in the lawsuit. According to the lawsuit, it happened at Dahn’s Sedona, Arizona Center. Retreats there also included "competitive events where losers were punished by sticking their heads in the toilet, drinking toilet water, licking and kissing the other members' feet on the floor of the men's bathroom”.
We misspoke. It's a breathing and ritual sadomasochism cult from Korea.

Labels: ,