Author: durgadasl

Durgadas ("Rodney") Lingham is a traditionally trained practitioner in all aspects of Ayurveda in the Ashtavaidya system of Ayurvedic medicine in Kerala, India and is also a student of Dr. David Frawley (Pandit Vamadeva Shastri) - one of the world's noted authorities on Ayurveda. Durgadas is not only an Ayurvedic Practitioner, Certified in all aspects of Ayurvedic Medicine, but also a Certified Yoga and Ayurveda Teacher, Ayurvedic Astrologer and Veda Kovid, a rare title given to those studying all aspects of the ancient Vedic sciences of India. As an Indian having grown up the traditional Vedic Hindu lineage spanning several generations, Durgadas feels it important to restore the traditional views and values of Yoga and Ayurveda, rather than the many distortions about these sciences promoted by non-Hindus with little knowledge in these areas and not having grown up in these traditions or the New Age Yoga and Ayurveda and Spa Ayurveda that is often popularised both in India and the West. His books hence reflect a return to tradition. He resides in New Zealand and is director of Arogya Ayurvedic Health Ltd and the Academy of Traditional Ayurveda, which conducts several courses on Yoga, Vedic Philosophy and Ayurveda. His website is www.nzayurveda.com

Vaishnava Gurus and Scandals

It is often we see that people defend the actions of their Gurus, due to the infallibility factor that has been attached to them. The need to see the Guru as “God” and interpolate the western belief of “God” as an infallible omnipresent and omnipotent old man in the sky is nothing short of a juvenile mind-born fetish over waking up to reality and facts. I have explained this more in detail in this article here.

In India existed many systems that believed and still believe in karma, samsara (reincarnation) and moksha (liberation from all lives), that included Adwaita (non-dualistic) Hinduism’s nirgunabhava (state of no qualities), Jainism and Buddhism that were in reality in their highest truth, atheistic – that is, not believing in and going beyond the idea of a personal God, which for all purposes is the limitation of a lesser mind. We also here, need not go on a Vaishnava-style rampage and try to have Adwaita deriving from Buddhism, when the Upanishads of India and even the Rig-Veda reveals the origin of Adwaita thought, ideas of maya (illusion) etc. which Buddhism itself borrowed and worked upon; so also, the idea of a personal deity at the lesser stages of devotion are also seen in the same ancient Vaidika recession also, as well as Tantrika concepts. What isn’t there is the finite God in Heaven or the limitation of a personal formed Deity alone as in Vaishnavism.

The highest Parashiva (supreme Shiva), Nirguna Brahman (attributeless Brahman) etc. was nirakara (formless), nirguna (attributeless), described as both sat (being), chid (consciousness) and ananda (bliss); as prana (life-force), paramatman (the supreme or inner-soul) beyond time, space, the world and all appearances. Any forms, even those of Mahadevas – which we can compare to actual living entities with higher causal embodied existence and greater, yet even finite life-spans, were never beyond the clutch of karma and thus never infallible,as the messages of the texts as the Puranas, the classical historical and mythological texts of India, reveal – many times they themselves had to undergo actions of their transgressions – what to speak of a lowly-embodied creature as a mortal physical humanoid in a much lesser age – even as a ‘Guru’ or pretender?

Somewhere along the line, the Vaishnavas between the 12th and 16th Centuries in India, consorting with and allowing non-Hindu converts from Islamic backgrounds into their faith catalysed a major change in the psyche within Vaishnavism itself, a virus which soon spread to other sects and cults across India – a thought that which Hindu on the face of it, introduced a very Semitic thought of even native systems such as pushti (grace), bhakti (devotion) and even moksha (release from rebirth). They also adopted the Abrahamic trait of cherry-picking verses and taking them out of context and using such to create divisions within older preexisting, more tolerant and integral systems – namely Adwaita traditions and their various yogas as steps or levels. They introduced finite concepts and infallibility of the Guru – much like the western idea of the Papacy and its Divine authority with the Church.

You see, while there are many scandals from across the board of Indian Gurus – and many of these are merely unfounded rants by jealous devotees – within Vaishnava traditions, the highest number and cases are being seen. The reason here is due to the juvenile nature of these people and laying such excessive emphasis on a “human God” or divinity, focusing on the central Deity itself as secondary alone. Even then, the juvenile behaviour of Vaishnavas, such as dictating when a deity eats, is dressed and locking them away, parading them about and even going so far as to devote one’s self to a doll of the deity and tend to it like a child – is somewhat derogatory to the human Rishis that never proclaimed themselves as the Central Deity – but only in a state of atmabhava (self-state), just as Guru Nanak’s statement of “na koi Hindu, na koi Mussalman” (there is no Hindu or Muslim) isn’t meant for the mundane embodied social state, but for the state of the Self, wherein no dualities like. Likewise, Adi Shankaracharya stated he had no mother or father – a statement again in atmabhava (self-state), not to be taken literally and superimposed or applied out of this atmika (self-like) context into the mundane / phenomenal world, any more than his own statements that he is Shiva in actuality are (though they are to Vaishnavas who, again see him as Shiva’s avatar or incarnation, as they do with Krishna’s statements in the Bhagavad Gita).

The very slanderous notions in the Bhagavata Purana – though spiritual allegories, have been taken as literal and not metaphoric by Vaishnavas, where they see Krishna as consorting with gopis at a tender age, having numerous ‘wives’ etc. Again, – allegories, but they don’t classify them as such in their very Abrahamic literal and physical world-view, divorced from the adhyatmika yaugika (inner yogic) view! Herein lies the issue. Moreover, the Mahabharata paints a different portrait of Krishna, as I have explained in my books and articles on the great Yogavatar or incarnation of yoga.

The very peculiar nature of the adherents of Vaishnavism reveals, as with Christianity and any devotee of cult-movements and ashram-dwellers, a sociopathic gene and also one that attempts to mask their numerous psychological conditions.

We also never see a Saivite, Advaitin, a Jewish Rabbi or even a Zoroastrian / Parsi knocking at our door trying to convert us, trolling us on social-media pages with endless quotations from their Masters’ works or mainstream texts – nor are they seeking to slander anyone in a trance of spiritual sociopathy or covert narcissism as we do with Muslims, Christians and the ‘Hindu’ Vaishnavas! The self-righteousness is left at home and in the faith and does no transgress these, unless to simply draw attention to purity of their teachings when attacked, misunderstood or misappropriated by others (again, often Christians, Muslims and Vaishnavas). It is the story of ‘everyone to their own, unless you attack us, and then we will take up arms to defend ourselves’, not the Christian, Islamic and Vaishnava maxim ‘we shall go forth and zealously proselytise at all costs!’.

A peculiarity also that we don’t (commonly) see outside of Vaishnavism, Christian Catholicism and Islam, is the abuse of women and children and notable cases of pedophilia. This may be placed down to the blind-devotional systems in these faiths, in which adherents actually think and act like children with juvenile samskaras (karmic and personal impressions or traits). Take the Vaishnavas for example as noted before – while most Hindus will bathe and dress a sacred murthi (idol) and see it as symbolic devotionalism for a higher purpose – a lesser stage of dwaita (dualism) leading to eventual adwaita (non-dualism) – the Vaishnavas see the image as literally God itself, adore it and modicodle it like a young girl with a Barbie doll, unable to understand the difference between an object of symbolism and one of reality. As noted, the same is also with their textual translations as well. When one has such a juvenile mind, mixed with a self-righteous narcissistic attitude, I guess one is attracted therefore to children and also sees nothing wrong with transgressing their own moralistic barriers and taboos – but will openly engage in criticism of those such as the Aghori Tantrikas that openly display their vulgarity in public, not covertly, in order to transcend the duality of the world and render asunder the boundaries of the ego-mind complex. Here, sattvas becomes not the self-righteous ideology of the ahankara (ego) within the mithya (false)realm of snobbery amidst the self-entitled Vaishnava / Christian and Islamic Puritans – but something to be transcended, as a guna or materialistic trait itself, still a property, not nir-guna (devoid of physical characteristics) per se as in Tantrism. Still, none molest children or degrade and rape women, unlike their Vaishnava / Islamic / Christian attackers who label them as heretics, heathens and evil-beings or sinners!

While Hindu Saivism and Saktism give equal importance to both counterparts as a whole, the Vaishnava feminine as Radha and Lakshmi become somewhat subordinate to the lofty Vishnu in Vaishnava systems (not his ‘power’ as in other systems), which  reflects a strong antagonism towards the Divine Feminine (not the same as human feminists using such to further their liberal gains) – not dissimilar to the male-dominated and almost homoerotic systems of Christianity and Islam in the west, not to mention fantasy paradises after death as moksha, not the state of formless merger in Consciousness per se! Here, Vaishavism reflects many Abrahamic tenets – something seen as early as 400BCE in the Bhagavata cult of India that gained even Greek adherents during Alexander’s time!

Like Islam’s Mosques and Catholicism’s grand Cathedrals, Vaishnavism prides itself upon personal wealth and physical structures of temples as a sign of outer faith rather than inner (like their physical paradises) – such as we see with ISKCON Bangalore with it’s Krishna Lila Theme Park to the grand-scale Akshadham temple of the Swami-Narayan movement of India, back to the historical Padmanabhaswami Temple in Kerala and Venktateshwara / Tirupati Temple in Andhra Pradesh – each personally possessing more wealth than the Vatican itself does! Yes, while other Hindu demonimations do possess grand historic temples, none has ever matched, nor does today, the grand-scale of Vaishnavas and their wealth or lavishness reminiscent of ancient Persia!

And herein lies the issue. I have discussed The Ego of Sattvas here that readers may also care to read and go further with. It connects to what is discussed here relative to such cults and how they have twisted Hinduism and moulded it out of the original fashion, like a yoga-teacher contorting their body out of the bounds of the original intention – to develop supple, male military personnel in ancient Sindh!

Keeping Native Traditions Pure

Many Swamis coming to the west had seriously bumped their head when they said one could become a Hindu, while remaining a Muslim, Christian etc. A Buddhist, Jain or Sikh maybe – or even a Jew, but not a Christian or Muslim! Their ideology was simply politically-based to get money for their ashrams, golden thrones and publishing their books. While the whole “Guru from India, so must be authentic” echoes in the minds of the west – they forget their own hood-winkers, the Gypsies (Romani), had themselves originated from India as well; they’ve had plenty of practice at manipulation as well!

In truth, any attempt to derive or connect sacred and native traditions that protected themselves carefully such as Hinduism cannot be correlated or derivatives seen with systems such as Christianity, that not only had no connection to the materialistic (Greco-Roman) civilisations that cultivated it, nor with the system itself and especially not with its diminutive concept of God, Heaven, Salvation, Original Sin, Hell, Satan and other facets that have no comparison in eastern and native earth systems.

Just as consuming raw foods does no good to one suffering from issues of vayu, so also those practicing forms of Christianity, either ancient or modern, as even combined and tainted native systems (as western Vaishnavism), do no good to combine such with Hinduism and muddy it’s scientific waters. True practitioners of Hinduism will therefore see absolutely no benefit in such nonsense and will ultimately renounce and reject such outright; instead, they will see in true organic systems as Taoism, Native American, true indigenous African, Polynesian and other systems persecuted by this parasitical religion and its offshoots!

As noted, just as various foods as suitable to various people of the globe, so also not everyone is suitable for Hinduism, not does it accept such. It isn’t a “way of life” and one must either be born into Hinduism or convert using shuddhi. You can’t simply just “be” a Hindu and wake up one day, as seems to be the modern trend. It’s not Pentecostal Christianity where you can symbolically become Carrie from the 1970’s film and bathe yourself in Christ’s 2,000 year-old Middle-Eastern blood, rather than than of a pig’s being dumped upon you! No – not that easy, sorry – but nice try! Vaishnavas as Tulsi Gubbard are also not Hindus – her own background is ISKCON, a Christianised form of dualistic Hinduism that abhors the use of the “H-word” – except, clearly where it suits for political purposes or those of inclusion! Such cherry-picking ideals are what is wrong with Christianised people in native faiths and systems – a complete “buggery” of such systems is initiated by them, unconsciously often due to impending different cultural samskaras that long term acts like a bull in a china-shop!

When your own culture or native traditions have been displaced due to your own culture, you seek to appropriate those from others and play the sympathy card. However, this simply reveals the Colonialist and Christian self-entitled gene that caused destruction of native faiths in the first place! Here, immersion, not appropriation or superficiality is the true key to adopting these systems – something many Europeans might want to look at and take a page out of the books of Arthur Avalon or Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, rather than trying to emulate the plethora of neo-Theosophical, neo-Vedantic and New-Age hodgepodge systems and become philosophically, a “master of none!”. Such systems are nothing more than ‘philosophical Naturopathy’ – baseless, non-original, superficial and scientifically useless – but popular with the masses that lust for this same superficialised-stream of tripe with the same heir in which they also love Christianity!

While native systems have multi-faceted beliefs and systems (as the complimentary shad darshanas in Hinduism, ranging from metaphysics to atomism and cosmology), the west is and has retained a mono-culture in all respects – even modern science to some degree. It is not generally all-embracing and accepting, but exclusive. It doesn’t confirm, but converts and proselytizes. We see this in all western Sci Fi characters from Dr. Who’s Daleks and Cybermen to the Sith Lords of Lucas’ Star Wars! There is no compromise, but rather, assimilate and convert into one’s own image – an ethos arising from the doctrine of man being made in God’s own image within their own traditions that, even when religion is separated, remains lodged in the psyche and substratum of their society, lurking and waiting to awaken to full capacity again!

This is a virus that all native people must understand. Don’t be fooled by their “reverse racism” rhetoric they will use to gain entry into native systems, either! This is an old technique that they’ve employed and appropriated from the Romans in order to misappropriate traditions of others – distort, play the victim, malign the native people and then create a cult-following and zealously proselytize!

The allure of Buddhism over Hinduism for example, with it’s own self-righteous attitude and contempt for Vedic shastras and rituals (which came about in later times as Buddhist monks didn’t use true Hindu texts to understand symbolic sacrifices and terms and instead, invented their own to malign Brahmins) – itself shows how the western mind works. They like seeing Brahmins as the evil people of India that are against the aboriginal dalits or outcastes (despite historically these tribes being originally fallen Hindu castes) – forgetting also that Brahmins are and always have been for the most, poor pujaris or village priests and ritualists, and it was the kshatriya or warrior caste that held the actual power, control and domination – who were often Buddhist Kings in earlier times! Hence, we deny the facts and go with “our gut”, aka the ‘Holy Spirit’ or anything uneducated, irrational and non-traditional, such as is the Eurocentric way and has been for the past two millennia! And it won’t change.

The west also likes to equate the Hindu castes within their own God-given self-righteous “rights” as well. Brahmins are any priests; terms as acharya, which stood for a knowledgeable Hindu teacher with spiritual knowledge and also proficiency in traditional sciences are being bounced about and equated with “practitioners”. People are appropriating the term ‘kshatriya’ and using it in all sorts of ways and manners – what denotes a true aristocratically-born, militant-caste Hindu!  We wouldn’t for example by contrast in Hinduism, start calling ourselves ‘Popes’, ‘Cardinals’ and ‘Emporers’, unless we factually were, would we? See how ridiculous it is? Yet, we see this misappropriation of Sanskrit terms in the west, as well as sattvas, dharma etc. as I’ve noted many times, equated with Christian senses of self-righteousness, rather than the cultural context within India and Hinduism on Hindu soil and Sanskrit, as the term itself denotes.

Ironically, we see those who think they are standing for tradition itself and seeking to represent such from a far leap across the bridge in the European fraction of Hindu-ism, misappropriating such terms very frequently, without understanding the insults they are creating – or perhaps they do, and it is simply the western ahankara they talk so much about, that they’ve not yet come to terms with, let alone transcended!

Namah Shivaay!

 

Differences East and West:

For many, the vision of Hindu devatas or deities may seem curious and strike a certain fanciful disposition that they wish to explore, while for others it becomes a system of either equating with their preconceived Christian notions of God and Saints in the Catholic traditions, or try and equate them with modernist socialistic regimes, such as feminism and liberality. Yet still, we see many on social media who are not Hindus using such for their own personal gains to look as if they are being “cool / trendy”, or others as feminists (and feminists in denial), who equate themselves with the goddess in her forms as Kali, Durga etc. they see themselves as avatars or incarnations of!

This whole western vanity clashes with traditional systems as Hinduism, where aesthetics relative to the spiritual realm aren’t overwhelmed by personal human vanity, as appears to be the psyche of the west. Here, we can easily see that the western (European) world is one of flesh and physicalities, whereas the east is one where Spirit triumphs over these, and true (inner) spirituality.

We can historically place this down to the differences between the western Abrahamic systems and the eastern systems. The west looks at scapegoats such as the concept of Satan for man’s errors and ways, whereas the eastern concept is that of prajnaparadha (mistake of the intellect), causing us to act in manners not conducive to good actions (karmas) and thus we, by our own avidya (ignorance), commit mistakes ourselves as a result, which have future (negative) consequences. It is simply cause and effect and requires no separate agency to cause us to err. Likewise, the west views the highest goal in the Universe in totality, as being a physical-like heavenly paradise reminiscent of earth’s historical Kingdoms of civilisations of Babylon, ancient Egypt etc. – whereas the eastern idea is one of moksha (release), where one doesn’t become a servant of God upon death, but either reincarnates or is eventually liberated from the cycle of samsara or rebirth and becomes one with the formless, impersonal Paramatman or Supreme Soul or Parambrahman. This state isn’t simply even the mere shunya or void-state that is the mulaprakriti (primal nature) nor the manifested akasha (ether, the first manifest element), but a transcendental state beyond all of these levels and even the Cosmic Soul (Purusha). The various swargas or heavens are described in Hinduism as quite lowly and simply the third-highest level of the seven main realms of existence (lokas) – earth being the lowest. Even in said heavens, beings are light-forms (jyothirupas) with ethereal non-physical bodies and have a duration of time there alone; even their own devas or celestial “rulers” (higher enlightened beings) are not eternal and are bound by kala (time), the law of cause and effect or karma, as well as samsara (rebirth). Here, the duration of the Devas is said to be 12, 000 “celestial years”, which equates to 4, 320, 000 human years or a cycle of a Mahayuga comprising four ages of human existence.

Where also the Christian world believes the world was created in 4004BCE, Hindus believe we are in the seventh manvantara or cycle of humanity (6 Mahayugas comprising 4, 320 ,000 years each have passed) and we began our final leg of this seventh cycle in 3102BCE, which lasts for 432 ,000 years, after which another age commences.

This glimpse of differences alone reveals that there are numerous differences. As with older faiths as Judaism that has many prophets, Hinduism also has innumerable Rishis (Seers) and avatars (incarnations of the seers and demigods, as well as higher mahadevas or greater celestials) that take birth and give newer teachings. There is no final prophet or one book in Hinduism – though they look back to the four Vedas as the first revealed authoritative texts, which even today preserve the world’s oldest religious texts as well as the world’s oldest continuous language of Vedic Sanskrit.

There are also other differences. Whereas science evolved in the west contrary to and often as a deliberate defiance of Church or theological beliefs of creationism, Hinduism in the east embraces all systems of atomism and physics, logic, cosmology as well as metaphysics, ritualism and yoga (inner science) as complimentary within its field, not simply metaphysics alone. All such schools within these also refer to other systems to explain creation via formation of sub-atomic particles to solid matter, unlike the “God created” explanation of the west, which is seen as incomplete (apurna) and juvenile to the eastern thinkers and philosophers.

The great Sanskrit grammarians (Sanskrit possessing the world’s first texts on grammar in the world) were often also mathematicians, such as Pingalacharya, who first noted binary numbers. Hindu astrologer-astronomers also gave a vast wealth of knowledge to the world via the Arabs, from algebra, trigonometry, as well as the concept of zero and decimal system and numerals we use today, without which, said Einstein, modern calculations would be impossible! Hindus also look back even to a celestial origin for surgery – which included elaborate techniques as plastic surgery via Sushrutacharya that the British first learnt in the 18th Century from Ayurvedic physicians in India. Even today, the ‘Indian technique’ of Sushruta is used in rhinoplasty.

With these advancements and gifts to the world that went hand-in-hand with India’s central religion, again we find no contradiction, but rather, the philosophers were the scientists as well. The Rishis or seers had many facets in the east, not simply one alone as dogmatic ritualists and philosophers as in the west. Moreover, even the Vedic yajnas or rituals themselves were for scientific effects as changing weather patterns and reducing pollution and disease, such as modern research has also substantiated [1].

We hence see that cross-contamination of cultures, or identifying one element of a culture within its own cultural context (as with science) in the west compared to eastern faiths, fails. Many often misappropriate the images and systems and use such for personal marketing zeals, over the respect that is given not only within Hinduism, but all native systems, out of respect also for the law of karma or cause and effect, which is quite different to subliminally believing one is absolved from these as they have belief in a deity (Jesus) alone, or one lusting after material comforts / vanity and uses spirituality for such purpose due to belief in a (physical) heavenly paradise or even having a scapegoat as Satan!

Perhaps overall, the greatest difference east and west is due to the western zeal for proselytisation in Islam and Christianity, which is almost like a contagious virus when these people come into contact with other systems and seek to “Christianise” the meaning and context of foreign words (notably sattvas and dharma), over the eastern zeal for simply honouring and preserving tradition within itself, and not seeking to proselytise and pasteurise, but to simply keep the original unpasteurised systems and their tenets organic, alive and pure! That alone is one’s dharma – not missionary activity!

Footnotes:

  1. http://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/ancient-fire-ritual-has-positive-impact-on-environment-scientists/article2103881.ece

 

The True Yoga of Tradition

Many today take up and see yoga as a blissful system; one of easy enlightenment and exercise that brings us closer to our goal of eventual Nirvāna.

However, the harsh reality is that true, traditional yoga is a difficult and austere path of personal sacrifice, pain and suffering. It is one of intense tapas (austerities), of swadhyaya (self-study and study of the classics or shastras and tradition) beyond the “Yoga Alliance Bibles” of the Bhagwad Gita as Yoga Sutras, to studying hundreds of texts and their commentaries and of various sciences and mastering them and their systems. It is about working deeply with the higher shaktis (powers) and unfolding our past samskaras (karmic traits) and dealing with them face-to-face, not remotely or in a distanced manner. It place pressure on the psyche and also the somatic structure.

What most envision as “yoga”, “sadhana” (spiritual discipline) and “tapas” (austerities) today, can almost always be equated to Christian atonement. It is simply a “shamanika” or palliative yoga, over the harsh and difficult “shauchika” (cleansing) or “shodhana” (purifying) yoga – just as all in the name of “Panchakarma” (five actions of detoxification in Ayurveda) today represents the superficial, palliative Spa modalities for Beverley Hills housewives, over the abrasive and specific true Panchakarma, as a result of our mondernist culture of aesthetics and enterprise.

We contradict ourselves by misusing yoga and creating “Detachment Workshops” aimed at living non-material lifestyles, but are affordable only to the rich and conducted at Five-Star retreats and surroundings.

We call others “aggressive” and malign them, and point out they’re violating ahimsa  (non-violence) when defending a native tradition we’re not part of, or cannot understand it – as we ourselves are unable them first, not realising our own educational and informational short-comings. We trespass on their properties on Social Media, to put them down and make ourselves feel better, or that were truly exercising “ahimsa“, while violating it in actions, mentality and speech, by simply acting out of an inferiority complex that our 200 hours of Yoga training has failed us, and we cannot be humbled by others’ words, or seek to learn anything new from them. We cannot swallow the ego that yoga seeks to dissolve and evaporate, that prevents us from admitting “perhaps I don’t know as much a I thought”. When faced with this fear, we react in the Christianied manner, taking the “holier than thou” approach and see to constantly project on others.

The true spirit of yoga is actually within the realm of the kshatriya or warrior, not the Brahmin. It is the deeper aspect of our rajasika (egotistical, kinetic) selves that seeks to strive forwards and beyond and not be merely satisfied with the status quo. Many talk about sattvas (purity) on a yogic level, denoting purity and clarity – as if they wish to become or emulate Brahmins or yore and dismiss tamas or darkness and inertia. This is what I call “The Ego of Sattvas“. Yet, physical tamas and rajas is sometimes required for different people. It comes into satmya (suitability) in the science of Ayurveda. For them, that can be “sattvika” – otherwise lineal sattvas can become too much of a self-righteous complex that breeds social stagnation and tamas in itself. Like some Abrahamic faiths and their aggressive concepts of purity and religious rigidity and fundamentalism that becomes physically, purely rajasika and ahankarika (egotistical). This comes into one’s biology and also swadharma or the path that unfolds as per one’s own inner-born actions or nature as per his past samskaras. Acting in a physical rajasika manner here is dharmically sattvika and natural for kshatriyas (warriors), for example. Hyperactive people need tamas to slow and ground them with heaviness or gravity (gurutva), as vayu itself is rajasika, being kinetic in nature.

Our modern yoga, however, doesn’t consider these finer aspects and tenets of the deeper traditional system of yoga. It sees and envisions yoga as opening up a horizon of easy kriyas or practices, by which we can attain the “Kingdom of God”, which is transferred and equated to Sanskritic terms as moksha (liberation), nirvana (enlightenment), atmajnana (self-knowledge) etc. by its modern adherents – when such concepts are not only absent in western Christian or Abrahamic traditions, but also have no connection whatsoever to the Abrahamic goal. In many respects, the modern yoga, even in the name of “Vaidika” (Vedic) to seek to validate itself (in vain) and be seen as pure and original – is actually Christian Yoga. Vedanta itself is often reduced to superficialities, rather than looking and examining the nuances of tradition. Time and time again, I see people taking verses from the Rig Veda and Upanishads and having taken them completely out of any plausible translation as a result of quoting only part of the stanza to which they belong, which contradicts the entire meaning of the verse itself – let alone the abysmal Sanskritic translations, which have no real connection to the topical matter yoga teachers wish to push forward (often again, a Christianised viewpoint based on samaritanism).

To stand on the traditional foundations of yoga is a challenge. Yogis were not peaceful, loving people who would come up and give you a hug or a kiss. They were not Jesus! They were very fiery type people, with fiery tempers to match, as is seen when many in the Puranas and elsewhere try and forcibly wake up and disturb a yogi’s meditation – often ending in them being cursed for doing so! Others such as Parashurama and Krishna were great warriors that took up arms to defend the foundations of dharma and even go so far as to evict people of criminal bent from their homelands or purge it, as a careful surgeon cuts out a tumour and cauterises it, to make sure it doesn’t cause future issues and spread. This is why tradition had it’s often excessive rules and regulations to be adhered to. Those as Vasishtha and Durvasa were known to assert their anger when threatened, as well as even the peaceful bhakti saint, Narada, who wasn’t beyond dishing out curses himself, though on the peaceful path of devotion! Lord Shiva himself, the master of yoga and to Vaishnavas, the greatest devotee of Vishnu, is well-known for his fiery temper, as also that of his wife, Maheshwari in her forms of Uma, Parvati etc. that assumes wrathful forms as Durga, Kali, Bhairavi and others! Lord Vishnu himself, the deity in the mode of sattvas or purity, as manifested in the fiery Narasimha, the man-lion where he disemboweled the father of his devotee, Prahlada, who had taunted the saint – as well as the fiery warrior-Brahmin, Parashurama and also Rama, Krishna and others. Krishna’s own brother, Balarama is known for his own anger, and the two defeated many asurika or wicked people in their youth, as in the Bhagavata Purana. The Nathas or the yogis that established Hatha-Yoga were themselves militant, fiery and wrathful, and through Gorakshanatha, gave rise to the yogi-warriors that would become today’s Gurkhas of Nepal, a deadly people.

This shatters the world many have of the blissful yoga, even of the Brahmanical world. Many look up to the saint Bhrigu in devotional traditions of yoga, the father of Goddess Lakshmi, who even cursed Lord Vishnu himself to take avatar. Yet, the modern Christianised Yoga seldom goes beyond the Yoga Sutras and Bhagwad Gita again, or the Christian Bible, as it is scared to dip its toe into the true traditional yoga beyond – that isn’t for the faint-hearted and is often one roller-coaster of a ride, requiring a strong mind, strong physique and above all, a mentality that expects challenges, accepts them and deals with them and his own karmas and karmic consequences directly – not simply seeking to scapegoat them by projection, as is the western virus!

The true yogi or yogini isn’t merely an adept in chiropractic movements, but has the agility of their mind, which is exercised beyond the human norm. It is for this reason that Heisenberg himself saw that there was nothing strange in Quantum Physics to those familiar with the vedantic Upanishads of India, and who stated:

Quantum theory will not look ridiculous to people who have read Vedanta.” 

The true aspirant of yoga dwells within the cave of the heart (hrit-guha), which is hidden (guha / guhya) or secret from the world at large, and through which on the outer level, through his majestic maya or creative-power of illusory energy, manifests his multiple forms and personalities that he brings out to the physical realm, from the inner-world of Brahman alone, but is also able to sustain, protect and honour the ancient tradition of his forefathers, by which these inner-energies are gained!

 

The Issue of Cultural Superimposition

Just as foods are suitable to various races and climates, so also such come into context, relative to cultural appropriation as well. Many people over time become ingrained in various religions systems – some more limited than others, which even when becoming more agnostic and even atheistic over time, shape the dominating psyche of the people or regions as a result of its influence upon the social structure. An example is in how in the east, ahimsa or non-violence predominated, that meant one did not forcefully go looking for trouble or attack another, but defended themselves only, as need be, to keep all communities and individuals safe, where threats to their own safety and dharma was involved.

The west (European world) has had quite a different psyche relative to this – even going back to Greco-Roman times when the west was more materialistic, and travellers to India noted that unlike Greece and Rome, India had no slaves, but only servant classes, who were free citizens and enjoyed benefits of freedom as others. Naturally however, these facets are ignored when the European tries to project their own culture upon the caste-system in India, and turn the poor Brahmin priests into what was wealthy kshatriyas and also try and see the whole Indian caste-system as something heathen and inferior, to deflect from their own culture and when such was taken out of cultural context of the Hindu world – but was true of the Islamic and European that indulged in slavery and the slave-trading for over a millennia.

This aspect alone shows how in the past 2,000+ years, the western world, shaped by the Greco-Roman influences, especially through Roman Catholicism and the Roman Empire, generated a superiority and self-righteous attitude and psyche among its people, often extending to all inferior (lower socioeconomic demographic) classes that sought to emulate them, like the bourgeoisie to the actual aristocrats, as a classic example! The age of the Colonialists from the Spanish to the British also drove a culture of Christian superiority that was dominated by the feeling of them doing the work of the One True God – the lands that they occupied, being ruled by inferior classes of people from the Americas to India, that didn’t subscribe to the One God, One Book, One Way mentality of the Colonialists.

As a result of this impending psyche, many Europeans that come into contact with what to them, opposed to their ‘vanilla doctrine’ religion and monochrome (‘conservative‘) culture is “exotic”, as being able to be token Hindus or Indians by defending native traditions in the heir that they feel they are more spiritually and emotionally connected and advanced or elevated, as even to deeper cultural and racial issues, than the swarthy Hindus, Native Americans and others, and also understand better, their plights, pains and suffering! This “spiritual fast-tracking”, as we often seen with yoga, jumping straight to asana and dismissing the preliminaries as yamas and niyamas and their own subcategories is a good example of this complex – it mirrors the Christian doctrine where one doesn’t bother about the rites, rituals and tenets of the Old Testament of the Jews to whom it belongs, but we can invent a newer, faster way;- accept Jesus, ignore philosophical debate and even actions and even logic itself, and where (blind) belief alone is enough to absolve us from all transgressions or even ignorance in the text itself! Don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing at all wrong in defending a native tradition, as long as we don’t use “we” and autonomously include ourselves into another’s culture, simply to try and deny we’re culturally appropriating!

As an example, I defend native traditions, Jews, Polynesians etc., but I’d never be their representative or speaker, as I’m not – just as I’m not black and wouldn’t seek to be seen as an authority on their traditions, as I have my own. I’d NEVER pose as a Jewish Rabbi, for example and likewise, not as a Christian Orthodox Priest or equivalent. Likewise, I wouldn’t try and pretend to be a Celtic Druid as that’s also not my culture or blood! But, I can sympathize with them, agree and find common ground.Yet, the self-righteous European wishes to even superseded the Hindu Brahmin or native American Shaman when they emulate them, throwing all caution as per cultural sensitivities we have grown up with, into the wind, superimposing that same Christocentric Colonialist self-righteous superiority-complex and attitude of the “superior” opposed to the “inferior” – whether they see it or not. Often it is, sadly, an unconscious trait they’re unaware of, but it’s seen quite transparently from others outside. When they do violate these cultural norms within certain cultures – they try and defend themselves by projecting – yet, heaven forbid for example, if any native person were to come to their house and not eat properly with a knife and a folk, quoting the maxim “When in Rome!”. It’s very much a one-way street, a one rule for them and another for everybody else – what is truly subliminal racism”.

Can you imagine here, for example, if a Chinese Christian person were to go to America and start telling Christians how to be good Christians, stating they alone knew about it and the American Christians knew nothing, even though it had been a part of their culture for several centuries and some regions, almost two millennia? All hell would break loose! Yet, this kind of colonialist attitude is what Europeans today project onto native people and their cultures when adopting them – often out of a pop-culture influence or other materialistic / social zeal for personal ego-development.

The issue with Europeans is they do not have a tradition of metaphysics, karma (which is replaced with “fate” as per their reckoning), samsara, reverence for nature and natural energies, ecology, vegetarianism, atman or the impersonal Godhead as native traditions do, as they’ve lost these centuries ago. All they have today has been appropriated from other groups and faiths or cultures aloof from their own in all respects and regards and have been franchised and proselytised as they have done with Christianity; not a true digestion and assimilation of foreign concepts in their original forms, but distorted and used in a self-righteous manner of self-entitlement of egotism. For example, despite the attempted correlations between say, the Maori Io, the Hindu Brahman as impersonal concepts to the western “God”, such completely fail, but the European uses such to try and carry his past burden of samskaras rather than accepting that one cannot simply fast-track one’s karmas as in Christianity and superimpose the doctrine of automatic “saviour-hood” in Jesus’ name and you’re done – in eastern and native traditions, it is about cause and effect of past lives to even be born in a native lineage, which then alone allows one to actually understand the context and traditions as a member from inside, not from without, looking in!

In closing, just as I myself cannot represent and understand the true suffering of Black Americans and their ancestors, but can sympathise with them and agree (the difference between Europeans and us however, is both groups have traditions aloof from the limited and limitations of Abrahamic doctrines and have both been dominated by Christianised Eurocentric history of our own traditions) – so also, Europeans need to start looking at their own cultures and not trying to continuously appropriate from others in a fragmented or deconstructive manner, as they have done already with their own faith of Christianity that was appropriated from the Middle-East and then used to attack and destroy their own religions and cultures – and didn’t stop there, but spread this insidious belief and psyche across continents where they conquered, in the name of God!

 

Sri Dharma Pravartaka Acharya and His [Negative] Obsession with the term “Hindu”

The Denunciation of the term “Hinduism”:

“The word “Hinduism” is not found anywhere in either Vedic or classical Sanskrit, nor in any of the recognized sacred scriptures (shastra) of this spiritual path.  Rather, the proper name of this spiritual tradition, the name that is found throughout the scriptures of the tradition, is Sanatana Dharma, or the Eternal Natural Way.  Additionally, followers of Sanatana Dharma are not properly referred to as “Hindus”, but as “Dharmis”, or followers of Dharma.” [1]

First of all, I have to question what the “recognized scriptures” refer to? The actual Vedic shastras that are authoritative are actually in the Vedic and older Sanskrit, not in the classical Sanskrit and include the four Veda Samhitas (viz, Rig, Sama, Yajur, Atharva), the primary Upanishads (excluding the later) and the Brahmanas – the latter of which comprise the Vedic commentaries and metaphysics. In addition, the authoritative commentaries acting as etymologies or Nirukta and Nighantu are by Sakatayana and the more recent by Yaskacharya.

Now, the term “Hindu” derives from the Persian version of the Vedic Sindhu, the name given to the people dwelling along the banks of the Indus-Sarasvati civilisation, which also came to be known as the “Hindu” later by the Persians. And since “Hindu” is an Iranian term, related to the same branch of Indo-Iranian languages as the Indo-Aryan Sanskrit, from which Sindhu derives, it becomes much more native.

There is also nothing in the Samhita portions of the Vedas, which are considered arsha (revealed) and shruti (heard) as opposed to the later smriti (remembered) texts, which include the Puranas, that notes of a Sanatana Dharma. In fact, the term Arya is used instead, denoting ‘one of pure (sattvic) qualities’. Thus, the self-proclaimed Hindu Master that authored this quote appears to liberally use the term “Vedic”, but actually applies it to what traditional Hinduism, or traditional “Sanatana Dharma” knows as the smriti and post-Vedic literature, of a secondary nature.

The term ‘Dharmi’ also appears nowhere in the Vedas, while the concept does appear and is known as Rta or cosmic law and order in the Rig Veda, upheld by Mitra and Varuna. Now, the term for the oldest Vedic people, such as Ila, the daughter of the progenitor Manu, is called as “Maitravaruni” – but not as a “Dharmi”, nor as a “Sanatana Dharmi“. This is a clear invention of ‘Acharya-ji’ himself!

This said however, the author also openly displays his origin within the Vaishnava system of ‘Hindu-ism’ as we shall call it (since Sindhu and Arya identify the Vedic people in the Riig Veda clearer than “sanatana” does), which itself lends its ear towards the system of Bhakti-Yoga or the Yoga of devotion – in their case, blind devotionalism which, like fundamental Islam and Christianity, is hell-bent on criticising everything else around them, but being lenient towards Islam and Christianity, and even reducing the Vedas or traditional shruti texts down as secondary to the post-Vedic classical-Sanskritic Puranas, notably the Bhagavad Purana, which itself, has many inconsistencies with the original Mahabharata (of which the Bhagavad Gita forms a part of), relating to their tutelary deity, Krishna!

For a start, Krishna in the Mahabharata is a reincarnation of Narayana Rishi, not the god Vishnu-Narayana and his peer, Arjuna, of Nara-Rishi, both from Badrinath.

Now, unlike this Dharmi claimant who is of “European-American of Italian and Spanish descentI am of Indian descent and was brought up in a family that recognised the validity of only the arsha or shruti scriptures, of which, we used the term Hindu and Arya and also Rishi-tradition or Arsha, but we never used “dharmi“, which does not occur in our sacred texts, whereas, as noted, Sindhu, the Iranian term for Hindu did – the Iranians who were and are, our sister-culture of Zoroastrians or now Parsis.

The term Arya / Aryan appears in the Rig Veda as “krinvanto vishvamaryam” (Rig Veda, IX. 63.5) as clearly the name of Vedic people, as also when Indra gives the earth or world (bhuma) to the Aryas (Rig Veda. IV.26.2). Indra himself in the former stotra (I) actually identifies himself with the archetype and progenitors of the Arya people – namely Manu, his father the Sun (Surya), Ushana (Shukracharya), Kakshivan (Dhanvantari Divodasa) and Kutsa Arjuni. In this respect, the Vedic people are more “Aindras” than Dharmis etc. and again points to Sindhu‘s indigenous origin. Sindhu is also the supreme of all rivers (Rig Veda.I.75.1).

Sindhu also derived the Persian term Hindu and thereby Indus in Greek and finally in the English-language, India, of which, like the terms in English such as zero and sugar, had a true “Vedic” origin, but the word “Vedic” itself is a more recently-inspired word for these groups of people! We can however say that the Vaidika texts belonged to and were sacred to the Arya people who lived along the banks of the Sindhu river!

Secondly, the two have had much more relationship with each-other than a “European-American of Italian and Spanish descent”, which also doesn’t seem to be mentioned in any of our texts, either! I guess as “America” is not mentioned, we might as well not validate ashrams and temples in America, since these are also “not found anywhere in either Vedic or classical Sanskrit, nor in any of the recognized sacred scriptures (shastra) of this spiritual path”.

We thus begin to see how ridiculous this all sounds, and also how contradictory it sounds – not to mention, like Max Muller, this comes from a Westerner who has the typical Christian attitude of putting the native Hindus in their place (oh, you naughty savages!), but an enlightened Italian-Spanish Hindu, thank the Devas, is here to place us and our tradition on the right track!

Have I missed something here, or have the poles clearly shifted?

We also continue…

“Sri Acharyaji was the very first Sanatana Dharma guru and scholar to write and publically speak about the unfortunate divide that exists between the two separate Vedic communities of A) Indian Hindus, and B) Western Yoga practitioners. Indian Hindus and Western yogis rarely communicate with each other, have found it challenging to relate to one another, have vastly different approaches to Vedic spirituality, and have remained two radically distinct communities. “

Interestingly, now we use the term “Hindus” and also “Indian” and have no issue with it being a non-Vedic, non-sanctioned term. Of course, this man is also writing in English, which, when I last looked, wasn’t even invented at the time classical Sanskrit or even later variants such as Pali came on the scene! But, I guess as Acharya-ji is much more knowledgeable than us native Hindus, he must be right and exercises the right to chastise others for their incorrect use of these terms, but he, being a Supreme Purusha, may act as he pleases!

We should point out here that even Vedic is an anglicised Sanskrit term, derived from Vaidika in Sanskrit, which means “of / pertaining to the Vedas (four Veda Samhitas) and again, implies nothing of these classical and supposed “Vedic” (rather, post-Vedic) texts that Acharya-ji himself commonly quotes from. His own antagonism towards the term Hindu actually comes from his own lack of knowledge and true education on the Vedas (of which, tradition doesn’t require you have a western Doctorate in – that has always historically been the issues with misleading translations and misrepresentations along the path!), as also his own Vaishnava roots in ISKCON, of which he now appears to be ‘closeted’ about.

Sadly for him and his cronies however, I am a Hindu and an Arya – not an Italian-Spaniard who thinks he can still dominate the world by cloaking his Paganism in another dress and giving it another name so he may be revered, just as his own Latin people such as Constantine did with the Pagans of Europe under what is now known as “Christianity”!


The Misleading Information about “Vedic” Texts:

In addition to denouncing “Hinduism”, Acharyaji also appears to have his own interpretation of what constitutes the Vedic texts. He states that the Gita is the most important of all “‪Vedic” texts and also states:


“In addition to the 
‪‎Bhagavad Gita, the most important sacred texts in the Dharma tradition include the Yoga Sutras, Narayana Upanishad, Narada Bhakti Sutras, Lakshmi Tantra and Bhagavata Purana, among others. ” [2]

Now for a start, as I have noted above, and just to reiterate here, none of these are ‪Vaidika, which implies the four‪ Vedas, the Brahmanas, principal ‪Upanishads (which doesn’t include the Narayana). These are POST-VEDIC texts and smriti (remembered), not shruti or authoritative (as their simple minds cant’ grasp the true original and vast Vaidika-sphere!).

In addition, tenet five of Acharya-ji’s “International Sanatana Dharma Society” is also misleading and reads:


“5) Vedic Authenticity: We are radical traditionalists in our approach to the Vedic way. We seek to practice Dharma in as traditional, authentic, orthodox and uncompromisingly real a manner as is possible in the modern era. There is nothing new, “New Age”, or concocted in how we teach or practice the Vedic way. Moreover, we do not “mix and blend” our practice or understanding of Sanatana Dharma with those of other, non-Vedic paths. If you are interested in the ISDS, the teachings of Sri Acharyaji, or being involved in our movement, please do so knowing that what you will be taught and will be following nothing less than the authentic and ancient religion of Sanatana Dharma – the Eternal Natural Way.” 
[3]

Well, this is my take on the above: You DO mix and blend your practices, you are not “radical traditionalists” – otherwise you’d mention the authority of all the original texts as per TRADITION, not as per “New Age” and “concocted” views that you appear to teach!

There is nothing AUTHENTIC and everything WESTERN and NEW AGE about this organisation. Including their overt use of the term “God”, which is a Germanic and Western term with negative monotheistic connotations that one would expect this ‘Acharya-ji‘ with a Doctorate in Religious Studies, would be able to identify from an academic and philosophical perspective!

Such westerners jump on their own band-wagon and misrepresent Hinduism, which then gets re-imported into the uneducated masses in India and Hindus as well as others in the West. One cannot merely “invent” and “re-invent” Hinduism as it suits them. If one wishes to do so and limit the shastras down to what THEY think is correct, then they’re better off going back to their Christian roots and staying there in my opinion…

The Pizza-Effect:

To conclude, the main issue I have with these types of Acharyas is that they actually gravely misrepresent tradition, import Christocentric / misappropriated views into Hindu traditions and then pass them off as “traditional”, which are then reimported back into India, where the scores of both uneducated Hindus, wishing to learn about their ‘spirituality’, not from the local Yogi, but from the likes of these American Acharya-jis and their books, which then becomes the mainstream. This is also how Buddhism once swept the nation of India and required Shankaracharya to restore true and authentic Hinduism, which had become very corrupted and debilitated due to these other cults.

A similar wave is hence occurring now. These Western Swamis appeal to both the West and also to Indians, usually as the latter, as noted, are largely ill-informed as to their traditions and there is a clear lack of viveka or discrimination in Hindus overall.

In closing, I quote Arthur Avalon (Sir John Woodroffe), a British turned Hindu-Shakta, and an authority on Hinduism with knowledge far surpassing the neo-Vedantins and others points out and his Shakti and Shakta in 1918 (“Tantra Shastra and Veda, Chapter IV), re the misinterpretation of Hinduism and Hindu concepts, and also how many Hindus (Indians) themselves follow likewise (thus affected by the Christocentric Superimposition):

“Even when giving an account of Eastern thought the Western is apt to take up a “superior” attitude because he believes himself to be superior. The Bishop of Durham very clearly reveals this sense of superiority (Christian Aspects of Life, by B. F. Westcott, 175) when after stating that the duty of the Christian missionary was to substitute for “the sterile theism of Islam and the shadowy vagueness of Hindu Philosophy a belief in a living and speaking God” he goes on to point out that “our very advantages” by way of “the consciousness of social and intellectual superiority with which we are filled” and “the national force which sets us as conquerors where we come as evangelists” constitute a danger in the mission field. It is this notion of “superiority” also which prevents a right understanding, and which notwithstanding the facts, insists on charges which, if established, would maintain the reputation for inferiority of the colored races. It is this reiterated claim to superiority that has hypnotized many persons amongst Eastern races into the belief that the European is, amongst other things, always a safe and learned critic even of their own beliefs and practices…”

He continues (with respect to how this affects the Hindu psyche):

“There are, however, still many Indians, particularly those of my own generation, whose English Gurus and their teaching have made them captives. Their mind has been so dominated and molded to a Western manner of thinking (philosophical, religious, artistic, social and political) that they have scarcely any greater capacity to appreciate their own cultural inheritance than their teachers, be that capacity in any particular case more or less. Some of them care nothing for their Shastra. Others do not understand it. The class of whom I speak are, in fact, as I have said, the Manasaputra of the English in a strict sense of the term. The Indian who has lost his Indian soul must regain it if he would retain that independence in his thought and in the ordering of his life which is the mark of a man, that is of one who seeks Svarajya-siddhi. How can an imitator be on the same level as his original? Rather he must sit as a Cela at the latter’s feet. Whilst we can all learn something from one another, yet some in this land have yet to learn that their cultural inheritance with all its defects (and none is without such) is yet a noble one; an equal in rank, (to say the least), with those great past civilizations which have molded the life and thought of the West. All this has been admitted by Indians who have discernment. Such value as my own remarks possess, is due to the fact that I can see and judge from without as an outsider, though (I will admit in one sense) interested observer — interested because I have at heart Indian welfare and that of all others which, as the world now stands, is bound up with it.”

 

References:

  1. http://www.dharmacentral.com/acharyaji.php 
  2.  http://www.dharmacentral.com/dharmainfo/dharmafaq.php 
  3. http://www.dharmacentral.com/dharmaactivism/about_ISDS.php 
  4.  Rig Veda Samhita

 

A Note on ‘Vedic Trolls’

For many in the west, anything “Vedic” (Skt. ‘Vaidika’) and the system of vegetarianism and ahimsa have become systems to make them feel good about themselves. Ahimsa itself is one of the most culturally misappropriated facets of yoga in the west and the world today – that arose not with Hindu yogis, but with the political interests of Mahatma Gandhi – not with true Hindu acharyas as Gorakshanatha, Matsyendranatha, Agastya and others historically, or Swami Vivekananda, Sri Aurobindo and others in modern times.

Often, there’s little true interest and more of a social interest to improve one’s spiritual resumé. We see this with Facebook groups and posts that misappropriate the entire basis and teaching of the Mahabharata and it’s Bhagavad Gita and try a turn it into a neo-Buddhist system of non-violence (when even Buddhist monks gave us Martial Arts!) -trying to reclaim some sense of a moralistic high-ground for their own purposes of forming a new order of chardonnay socialists!

This has become dangerous for many reasons, as it superimposed ideologies from Christian cultures upon the eastern systems and takes their statements and tenets out of cultural and historical context in a similar heir to how Europeans first interpreted the Vedas, as a result of Eurocentric biases and preconceptions.

Social media today has become a tool for such people as well. It gives their diminutive learning a voice and stamina with which to proselytise their garbled half-truths, hearsays and other misappropriated and hyperbolic statements and views. This doesn’t end there. Many Vaidyas from India have been setting themselves up as Gurus since the ’70s, often having no real learning in yoga, vedanta and such systems back home or in the west. Paraphrasing has become the new “Vedic” and fueled with western blind-faith based naivety, gives rise to a dangerous cocktail.

Often we see articles and posts from Ayurvedic practitioners and yoga teachers that are quite laughable, due to getting basics facts wrong or completely misrepresenting quotes out of philosophical context. Others confuse systems and act as “experts”, which pasteurises the systems and tenets themselves; an example is how we often see “dosha” in Ayurveda as representing a “mind-body type” – which is incorrect and doesn’t even represent the prakriti of a person correctly! Others like to split yoga, ayurveda and tantra up into separate systems, which they are all part of, or buy into the Tantric-Vedic split, which goes along with the Aryan-Dravidian racial divide, that is also not only illogical and scientifically proven to be incorrect, but incorrect as per even the traditional meaning of these within India itself!

Sadly, the maxim “a little knowledge is dangerous” doesn’t seem to resonate with these people. Instead, they see this as in invitation to express their little knowledge as true, gospel and final, and when confronted with complete or integral systems and wisdoms, cannot grasp it and so rather learn, expand and embrace, take to trolling and abusive diatribes! We find little in the way of citations, quotations and references substantiating their claims, beyond their dubious Gurus’ words (which are often in the same contextually incorrect category) – on their websites, blogs and articles or posts, but instead a culture of “I feel so” emotional-isms, that epitomises this modern-age of social media and how it becomes a tool for spiritual sociopaths!