21 January 2015

Sex and Gurus

  • My friend Swami Shankarananda is currently involved in a "sex scandal."
    The only two scandalous things about this sex scandal is that it is considered scandalous, as it is a Tantric based path that does involve many expressions of love, including erotic love, and that all the sexual stuff was hidden, done in secret--which he said was Hindu tradition. In other words, Hindu means hypocrite and liar.
    Swamiji and I were friends for many years, especially during the time of the breakup between Chidvilasananda and her brother when she routinely sent thugs to breakup Nityananda's and Shankaranada's Satsangs. But, all the time during our friendship, Swamiji was never very open about anything. he hid everything. He even told me that Baba Muktananda told him not to teach substance unless a seeker threw thmself at him.
    Muktananda himself only told jokes and long stories about a hypothetical comic teacher, Nasrudin.
    But the power of sex is pivotal to Self-Realization. Shakti loves sex; it awakens the inner energies, Kundalini. and the heart in ways gentler love does not.
    For the latter, I give him a B+, but for the "Hindu tradition" of secrecy and lying I give him a C-.
    Swami Shankarananda, Photo: Gary Sissons/Mornington Peninsula News Group A sex scandal has shattered the zen-like calm of an ashram in Mount Eliza, with revelations its “guru” and director, Swami Shankarananda, allegedly had sexual relations with dozens of women attending the ashram. Distressed for…
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    • Andres Feo Gasperi Yes I know there is a lot of pretense among many Gurus; Mainly, I think there is a big taboo on this subject.
      7 hrs · Unlike · 1
    • Edward Muzika Fred, some day I will tell about my encounter with Shakya Tensin, head of the Shakya sect. It was not pleasant.
      7 hrs · Like · 1
    • Edward Muzika My own awakening to the manifest Self, love and worship of sentience, came about because I deeply loved a woman and she loved me the same. The relation was never consummated physically, but my heart (and other parts) were set on fire, and I had a wild series of experiences culminating in Self Realization. So I know the power of erotic love to awaken one.
      7 hrs · Like · 6
    • Kris Shiva Schaaf Beautifull
      7 hrs · Unlike · 2
    • Andres Feo Gasperi If I'm not mistaken once I read that Ramana Maharshi said to a disciple that is better to do it than think about it all the time hahaha But in general like I said, The Maharshi gave no advice on it, he was indifferent.
      7 hrs · Edited · Like · 1
    • Edward Muzika Darshana, Robert led a very secret life. We knew very little of his past, how much time he actually spent in India, how long he actually lived with his wife, the real reason he left the Santa Fe ashram in the middle of the night, or why Nicole never w...See More
      6 hrs · Edited · Like · 6
    • Frank Forest · Friends with Mahesh Michal Borkowski
      "There is no deity superior to the Guru, no gain better than the Guru's grace ... no state higher than meditation on the Guru." -Muktananda
    • Edward Muzika The thing about Muktananda is that he fully understood the power of erotic love, both for himself and for his sexual partners.
      6 hrs · Like
    • Edward Muzika See, the people that write these article already believe that sex between a teacher and a student is wrong based on the Western Psychoanalytic model, the medical model of exchanging money for time and insight, and sex was only to be talked about in ter...See More
      6 hrs · Like
    • Edward Muzika Notice in the article, the author said that Marie said Muktananda seduced her. But the seduction was nevr articulated. It moved to a different story.
      6 hrs · Like
    • Andres Feo Gasperi I think a sexual relation between a teacher and a student is wrong if the teacher claim to be celibate; But if he don't claim to be celibate I think is neither wrong or correct.
      6 hrs · Unlike · 1
    • Jenya Birch As far, as I know if a disciple happen to have a guru from the opposite sex and if they have a real relationship with him/her they have two big dreams- To make love to the guru and to kill the guru. Everything in between says they are not really involved with the master but just gingerly flirting with the idea of having a master.
      5 hrs · Unlike · 2
    • Edward Muzika Wow Jenya. That is far deeper than most see. Thank you!
      5 hrs · Like · 1
    • Fred Eric Like a praying mantis! 
      5 hrs · Like
    • Edward Muzika It is part of what Guntrip called the Schizoid position, the dramtic infant-like fatasies of possession and destruction of the loved one, creating an incredible approach avoidance conflict, poorly resolved by a good dealanity of both sexes.
      5 hrs · Like · 2
    • Paulo Z-netto How can one really tell the difference?
      5 hrs · Like
    • Paulo Z-netto Between a lustfull master and a real one?
      5 hrs · Like
    • Paulo Z-netto It takes maturity to do this!
      5 hrs · Like
    • Neville Campbell Edward it is not really wither there is a declaration of celibacy or not. It has more to do with the openness with which sexual love is shared as part of the way of a particular teacher. In traditional Tantra this was open. The student teacher relation...See More
      5 hrs · Unlike · 2
    • Edward Muzika The problem is neville that openness of sexuality is not part of what is accepted here in the USA or Australia. I can see the bind.

      This is an area that needs to be carefully explored today all over again, new traditions established based on sciene an
      ...See More
      4 hrs · Like · 3
    • Neville Campbell When the heart is softened, when truly living from the heart, it is impossible to abuse power. My observation of Shankarananda, when he first became involved with Muktananda, was someone who had a hard on for power. Not sure wither centuries will resolve this conundrum Ed.
      4 hrs · Unlike · 1
    • Edward Muzika Fame, not power.
      4 hrs · Like
    • Dominic Rule · Friends with Suzanne Foxton and 2 others
      "Nisargadatta used to visit prostitutes as did Ramesh Balsakar, and Robert Adams was a womanizer." That's kinda shocking, but not really surprising when I think about it. More of the shadow side for me of all these eastern anti-life foolosophies perhaps. Not that I judge of course, but it's a turn-off. How do you know this about Ramesh and Nissy, Ed?
      3 hrs · Edited · Like
    • Edward Muzika I forgot who told me. But I think it is rare to find a teacher who is celibate of either sex. I think teachers are less hung up about it than the average psychotherapist.

      Some of the Buddhist nuns who rose to abbot status that i knew were gay.
      ...See More
      3 hrs · Like · 3
    • Stuart Sovatsky here is mature yogi in US who attained with no scandals, B H Dass Santa Cruz, CA
      3 hrs · Like · 3
    • Edward Muzika Attained what Stuart?
      3 hrs · Like · 1
    • Stuart Sovatsky take a look at his leadership at Mount Madonna for 50 years, that will help... but perhaps this will only confuse
      3 hrs · Like · 1
    • Edward Muzika I have no idea who he is or what he has done. Attained what Stuart?
      3 hrs · Like
    • Ted Thompson Ramesh's philandering is well documented on Timothy Fitzpatrick Conway 's web page, "Enlightened Spirituality." Nisargadatta visiting prostitutes is something I would be very skeptical of.
      3 hrs · Like
    • Edward Muzika Why do you find it hard to believe?
      3 hrs · Like
    • Darshana Ji Thank you Edward , i am saddened by this as i idolised Robert Adams and yet the body has its own destiny. The Self remains Untouched.
      3 hrs · Unlike · 2
    • Edward Muzika I saw only the desire for love in Robert's actions. Most of the time he was not in this world.
      3 hrs · Like · 3
    • Ted Thompson I was around many of the teachers who had scandals a few decades ago, including Sai Baba, Muktananda and Richard Baker Roshi. I always gave them the benefit of the doubt until the evidence became overwhelming. I had not heard that about Nisargadatta be...See More
      3 hrs · Like · 2
    • Grace Ana K And here is a beautiful Yogi Swami who walked the talk....40+ yrs celibate. He would harangue us on this subject...lol. Oh my ears are ringing from Papa Durga reading this post Ed ji...lol. You would have really enjoyed sitting with Him...no doubt it would have been mutual.  _/\_
      3 hrs · Unlike · 4
    • Daniel Peterson Sex isn't a bad thing.
      When charismatic gurus exert power over students to get them into bed, it's always wrong. 
      Charging students to
      ...See More
      3 hrs · Like · 1
    • Ted Thompson The senior monks and nuns at the SF Zen Center gave Baker Roshi a long rope, but finally asked him to take a hike when he seemed to be obviously not following his own precept to do no harm to others.
      3 hrs · Like · 1
    • Edward Muzika I enjoy how this subject elicits such condemnation. What do you do Daniel when an attractive female or male, 20 years your junior comes on to you? Kick them out of the Sangha, worry about how the affair may backfire 5 years down the line, of share lo...See More
      2 hrs · Like
    • Ted Thompson The problem is mainly abuse of power. Students trust the guru and for them to be manipulated or lied to for money, sex and power is just not right. I have read many statements from disciples of Sai Baba and Baba Muktananda talking of the severe damage ...See More
      2 hrs · Like · 4
    • Dominic Rule · 3 mutual friends
      It's a can of worms. It's less to do about sex and certainly not about celibacy for me. More about integrity, responsibility, honesty, empathy etc. Ramesh sounds like a slime ball all masked over with the guru's rationalizing, in denial..."it's just th...See More
      2 hrs · Unlike · 1
    • Jonathan Dischler I organize spiritual teachers and healers since many years. Literally, I met hundreds in my life. And you find the same topics in spiritual communities as in "healing business" (what it unfort. got for many). - Today, I can say that at this point in my...See More
      2 hrs · Edited · Unlike · 2
    • Joseph T. McMahon Many people on the path have issues. They would not be trying to “awaken” out of their unsatisfactory lives if they didn’t. Many are vulnerable in that they are looking for answers to life. They are looking for their true nature. Or maybe they don’t kn...See More
      2 hrs · Like · 1
    • Grace Ana K Ed ji with all due respect, Daniel is talking about Charismatic gurus who exert power over students with that intention...not a teacher-guru who's too weak to hold space in a sacred circle and have power exerted over Him/Her. Lol I don't see condemnation across the board here. He pointed out some specific boundaries. And if there is ever to have an opinion in this matter, Papa and I would agree with that one.  _/\_
      1 hr · Unlike · 1
    • Mara Harnett I think future generations will have the self development of the bonding heart and relationship partnerships on as high a level as their self realization attainments. more in alignment and more integrated.
      1 hr · Unlike · 1
    • Edward Muzika
      Press Esc to cancel.
    • Edward Muzika Other students step all over other students to get into the inner circle where they use their own connections to 1) promote their guru to their friends, and then promote themselves as the guru's right hand people.

      I could namr names, but I won't.

      Students can be cut throat to gain access to the guru, and convert that to promoting their own agendas.

      It had happened to me many times.

      there is no spirituality in this sort of relationship.
      1 hr · Edited · Like · 1
    • Nathan Healey Differences are superficial! Ethical is open to interpretation and ones ego has a field day in defining it. Everything in the universe comes from love for that is all there is. Unfortunately from that frame of reference we have made laws, words, judgem...See More
      1 hr · Edited · Like
    • Jonathan Dischler Dear Ed, of course everybody is developing. Nobody is perfect. But some say  "no", others say "yes" and sometimes go the "easy way" (concerning sex). I never blamed "just" the guru, BUT: I expect the guru to be stronger and wiser then the student. Why else should he/she be the guru? Too many these days seem to go into a position of a guru without being ready for it (can you ever be ready?) If the woman you mentioned did the same with other teachers, she surely tested many. - What you experienced concerning students trying to get powerful positions in an ashram, for example, etc. I also observed.
      1 hr · Edited · Unlike · 1
    • Faisal Sarhi OH SEX!! I love sex ... I tried to be celibate several times but never worked haha   .... but I could say that over the years sex is being refined and continues to be so not approaced mostly out of boredom and escapism but for its beauty and grace ... 
      These vows of celibacy are just nonsense.... These teachers break them with ease as in my opinion celibacy is not natural to the body in any way but also sex addiction isn't natural to the body either... Perhaps balance is the key....
      1 hr · Unlike · 1
    • Edward Muzika Students teach teachers, and teachers learn from students--not the lessons each was trying to teach, but about their own direction.

      Yes, manipulations occur, but I think finding and devloping love, including erotic love, enhances the power of Self to 
      find itself, and make the individual more human.

      Have your heart broken many times, see how humble you get.

      And all teachers (except for the sociopaths) have had their hearts broken in one way or another by students, and studnts by teachers. It is part of coming alive--the patterns and desires are borken and find new channels.

      But so many here speak in judgment, not of their own experiences.

      I have become quite unjudgmental about sex and the guru, manioulation and the guru/student, lies told by students, and by teachers.

      Lots of people on FB never have had a teache and think all are supposed to me like Ramana. But only Ramana was like Ramana. Most are very different. Real people, real desires, real realizations of both emptiness and fullness.
      59 mins · Like · 3
    • Ganga Nath I have enjoyed reading these comments as I have experienced the guru/disciple sexual relationship in many spiritual organizations in the West for over 45 years. As is evidenced by all of your comments, it is a highly complex topic. One important factor is the tendency of Western women, coming from a permissive society, "throwing themselves" on Eastern teachers who come from sexual repressed cultures. For several years I was the attendant to a Tibetan lama. When he taught in Encinitas, California, a young woman came into the hall from the beach wearing a bikini and after the Dharma talk she gave the lama a big hug pressing her breasts against his face. It's no wonder that many Eastern teachers, who grew up in monasteries, consider scantily clad western women to be loose and available. Another factor, is the tradition of Tantric practices that have a valid place in Eastern spirituality but may be tremendously misunderstood in our Western culture that still has its roots in Puritanism where sex is considered a sin. And then, of course another overarching factor is the tendency of men or women (but all too often men) in a position of power to manipulate their subordinates to satisfy their own lust for sex, fame, money and power. Nearly every Eastern teacher who came to the West has taken this fall and in many cases it has disrupted or terminated their teaching activities. We all have a lot to learn.
      38 mins · Edited · Unlike · 2
    • Edward Muzika Good balance Ganga.
    • Edward Muzika May I again suggest watching the video of Andrew Cohen and Chetanananda, and sw. Shankarananda (and Br. Charles) in "quatralogue re the teacher/student stressors?

    • Pankaj Seth · Friends with Stuart Sovatsky
      In India, the word "Tantra" or "Tantrik" does not have a good reputation. It is associatied with power abuses. Only in the West have I seen these terms associated with some respect. Not in India, though... people generally run away from it.
      19 mins · Unlike · 2
    • Edward Muzika Pankaj SethYou are right. Alongh the same lines a Korean master once said to me, "Why are movie stars so worsjipped in the Uniter States? In Korea they are considered one step above prostitution."

      Culture, culture, culture.
      10 mins · Like · 1
    • Andres Feo Gasperi I think is useless to take a vow on celibacy if you are going to think in sex all day and get frustrated, it is like people trying to stop eating to loose weight and they just end frustrated and eating even more food than before the diet; I think certain people have a natural inclination toward sex, for example my case is that I'm unconcerned about it, I've never had a girlfriend and I'm not interested in sex or even masturbation.

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  1. It's really weird! Why would almost an entire society base it's views of sexuality on the absolutely outdated writings of a frigid woman namely Anna Freud and the writings of her father who apparently had no sexual contacts to anybody after the birth of his last child- and who would rather experiment with heavy drugs than anything sexual??

    On the other hand people like Wilhelm Reich -who saw the importance of a functioning sexuality- got completely ignored by the scientific community -plus: thrown out of the circle of psychoanalysts by Anna Freud herself - Why?

    Sometimes I do wonder if the artificial Taboo of sexuality is consciously upheld for controlling purposes - of keeping people' s energies down, keeping them bound to one place and made predictable.. Who knows?!

    Selfgranted love through the presence of another beloved person and lived intimacy -even if just for a very short time- can be so powerful, beautiful and transformative!!

    I love your honesty and your conscious choice FOR the Self, Ed!!

  2. Thought you might enjoy this one