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AOL illegal financial practices

June 30, 2010

I was working on my next article on wide-spread corruption & fraudulent practices in AOL when I received the following comment from Klim on my last post. I felt it is worthy of its own post as it touches on quite a few of those issues which show fraudulent nature of AOL. Many thanks to Klim for contributing. I am sure many of our readers are as pleased as we are to have Klim back, as we have all been missing Klim’s great posts in artoflivingfree blog.

We invite all our readers to feel free to send their posts to blog’s email address. Many of the issues we are raising in this blog are common AOL practices in many countries and many teachers/volunteers know about them. It would be good if all ex-AOL teachers/volunteers expose what they know about AOL and what happened in their own  countries. What we are talking about here are not isolated, one-off happenings, rather AOL unwritten fraudulent practices in a very well-planned and executed con-scheme.

Klim  June 30, 2010 1:05 am

I am an ex full time teacher and I did not live an extravagant life. On the contrary. I know some did and cashed out big time from it (like an European teacher I know who often got a lot of money and gifts from his trips to the Arabian countries), but it is not fair to say all of us did.

Some of us struggled enough to have affected our health and when approached him to ask for the basics, he’d say with a sad look in his face and that very female voice of his, “You know … we barely make it … all these seva projects … all these schools … and the children ….”

What is wrong is he insists it all goes to charity. We repeated it like parrots and believed it in blind faith, but the money does NOT go to seva projects.

First of all, all course monies collected in courses outside of India are taken out of the country – most frequently IN CASH – by some teacher who goes from abroad, and TAKEN BACK to India. Notice this is an illegal transaction in most countries.

 2.)When a participant pays for the course, AoL does NOT give a receipt, thus, not all income is reported, as it should be, in the tax reports. Whatever is being reported are not the real numbers. There are no receipts, nothing to prove absolutely anything.

But, as someone who used to handle these monies, I can confirm all the money is eventually taken out of the countries and taken back to India. Nothing stays for local projects and when is need for them, locals needs to raise the funds. The question is, “Does India only need seva?”. His explanation: “it is so expensive to maintain the ashrams.”

AshramSSSSSS, he says, but it only goes to India, not to Canada, not to Germany, not to Poland, not anywhere else, but India.

3.) Groups outside of India that want to do seva projects can NOT use the money that supposedly was collected in the courses for charity work. I dare say that even the Indian chapters that want to do seva cannot use the money their local chapter raised with the courses. Devotees are asked to raise their own funds for anything they want to do, and seva projects, in general, are used, anyway, as propaganda.

The media, governments and so-called VIPs are suckers for “charity work”. The explanation: it makes them all stronger and gain more merits.

With all that money that goes in, most full-timers did not receive a proper salary, most barely received a proper stipend, and even this money was paid “under the table”. Another illegal action. But please do not put all of us ex full-timers in the same basket. Some of us got seriously hurt by it all and did not earn one cent, but lost one too many.

  1. Anonymous permalink
    June 30, 2010 5:10 am

    Believing all the hype projected about Sangeetha Jani I took the Art of Silence Course in SF Bay area during May 28th to 31st. Right from the beginning it appeared that the entire emphasis was on making money out of the course

    Though the course fee was $200, participants were asked to mail a check for $250 towards expenses. I kept wondering whether the expenses will run into this range. There were around 150 participants on this course. The total claimed expenses amount to $37,500. The only major expense that I could see was the renting of the facility. Though the course duration was advertised as 4 days we were asked to vacate the rooms by 10 am on the 4th day. It appeared to be a cost cutting measure to rent the facility only for 3 days.

    Since they charge this as expenses, are they not accountable to publish the expenditure to justify the amount collected. It appeared that there were some tricks built into this strategy of collecting checks separately. Strangely they don’t seem to do this for courses outside California. This is not the only course which involved expense checks. I have come across so many of them in the past. Someone should investigate the motive behind this. One reason for collecting this as expenses could be to make the revenue look smaller. Earlier these checks were mostly collected in the name of the organizing volunteers which is now switched to VVM.

    A week or two later the same teacher pushed all the 55 participants of DSN Course into organizing a mega part 1 course by enrolling 1008 people. Volunteers are sweating it out to realize this “project/home work”. If they succeed, it will overflow the coffers roughly by a quarter million at $250 each. All tax free!! No expense checks are involved on this course. Is it because it is expense-free, except for renting a hotel for 5 hours each day for 4 days. I have never come across expense checks for part 1 courses. May be because the expenses are negligible.

    • Just No One permalink
      July 1, 2010 11:53 am

      And now a Land grabbing accusation.

      It is Sri Sri himself who has said…..God laughs 2 times

      1. When a doctor tells a patient, I’ll cure you
      2. When people fight over a piece of land….saying “mine—yours”…..claiming rights to the land

      • Anonymous permalink
        July 1, 2010 5:14 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        And what makes u think sri sri was not laughing! 🙂

    • neutral-observer permalink
      July 1, 2010 4:55 pm

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      I am a faculty at Stanford University and I think some of the allegations here are not justified. I was at the Part 2 with sangeetha jani too. Anonymous, please take your family to a 4 day retreat at the presentation center and I would be surprised (along with food) if you paid less than 250$.

      Regarding money in the US, every single dollar is accounted for – I personally had the same skepticism and i did a detailed study of their financials and I was satisfied. Let me tell you this, the IRS is smart enough to nab any organization doing anything incorrect.

      Knowledge cant be free-I dont know where this train of thought even comes from. Till the day comes when all universities stop charging fees, the 200-400$ whatever it is that AoL charges is totally justified.

      And on a personal note, I would encourage healthy skepticism on something but not cynicism, Sangeetha Jani was a wonderful gentle teacher and I personally benefited immensely from the course.

      • LOL@Stanford professor permalink
        July 2, 2010 12:54 am

        The IRS is “smart enough to nab any organization doing anything incorrect…”?????

        Please go to this site (to name one of thousands) proving otherwise.

        Since 2006, the agency has used three companies to go after a $1 billion slice of the nation’s unpaid taxes. Despite aggressive collection tactics, the companies have rounded up only $49 million, little more than half of what it has cost the IRS to implement the program. The debt collectors have pocketed commissions of up to 24 percent….

        Oh how I’ve lost respect for Stanford professors now……………..

      • neutral-observer permalink
        July 2, 2010 2:34 am

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        @LOL- I guess you have no idea of what the tax laws of this country are-detection and recovery are totally different and delisting rules are very strict for any organization. Especially if the allegations are as serious as listed in this article, it is impossible for any organization to prevent detection.

        Btw,no one asked you to respect Stanford professors. We dont look for it in blogs, especially the ones like this one.

      • mello permalink
        July 2, 2010 6:39 am

        Congratulations on being a faculty at Stanford University! Now, what does that have to do with anything else you say?

      • neutral-observer permalink
        July 2, 2010 7:43 am

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        @Mojo-Nothing at all!! Hows your mojo coming along?

      • anonymus permalink
        August 5, 2010 11:01 pm

        with all the comments in this post. What ever you have achieved and enjoyed is far greter then what we can imagine. Keep your eyes on what is worth having and long lived.
        There are negetivities but all these negetivity should not touch us or our mind. And mind is cured though AOL practice , that is for sure (every one agrees who does this practice regularly, or attended 4 day part 2 course). And so I praise and worship these practices and sri sri result of who we have this option/way/faith/love/didication.
        So stay away from this bad financial practices and stick with this beautiful AOL practices.

  2. Roy permalink
    June 30, 2010 7:25 am

    Dude, btw, u called the AOL Ashram? 😉

    • goneagain permalink
      August 6, 2010 2:24 am

      @anon August 5, 2010 11:01 pm

      We can wake up the one sleeping, no one can wake up the one who is pretending to be sleeping dude. This is not a absolutely a place for you to visit if you want to stuck in ‘maya’ forever. What are you looking here then? Are are worried that ‘RS’ businesses will collapse then your ‘maya’ will too?

  3. ex-ssy-teacher permalink
    June 30, 2010 7:29 am

    I am an ex-teacher of Sri Sri Yoga. We’re in a small country with only one major center for all our activities. I can confirm there are no written rules or regulations on how the money collected as course fees are to be distributed or spent. I’ve talked to teachers from a few other neighboring countries where the practice is the same. Distribution of funds is discretionary and dynamic. We often have senior teachers traveling to and from India, and they often used to give us new instructions on fund allocation every time they visited.

    Some of the money did indeed go towards seva programs, but I got the feeling that a lot more could be done with the money collected. I witnessed a lot of money being taken as cash, some were sent via western union, some via online bank transfers, some by travelers checks and demand drafts or cashiers orders. I knew a lot of money went to India, but we were never clear on how it was spent.

    We used to collect about $3000 to $3500 for each SSY course depending on the crowd. I as a teacher was not promised anything. There was no contract that stated how much or what percentage I would get, but at the time, I was not after the money, rather, I wanted to teach. I’ve taught 12 SSY courses so far. Some time during the last three years there was a small change in policy and teachers were allowed to keep a small portion of the takings, but the exact percentage or amount was unspecified. To recover this money as arrears took 18 months.

    Most teachers here spent their own money on transport, some on food and other stationery, and some on the venue which eventually got refunded but after 6-8 months at the very least.

    I could clearly see three types of teachers. The first type is the new lot who are so taken by the guru that they will blindly believe anything they are told, and do anything they are asked. I was among this lot just a few years ago. The second type are those like me now, with questions and doubts, just a little frustrated with no straight answers and clear information, the AoL borderline outcasts. The third, and smartest group are the founders, the people who’re in charge of the country’s activities, who deal with the money, and the ones in power.

    Towards the end, I was very discouraged with the lack of transparency, the complete disregard for professionalism, and the apparent disappearance of funds. I quit teaching last year, and have all the time in the world for my family and myself now!

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:52 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      Its ok to be a little skeptical. Just want to let you know that in India, all incoming international transactions are recorded and under FEMA law. I doubt if any western union money or checks could go unnoticed.

      AoL finances are audited by top auditing firms and to the best of my knowledge they have been fairly clean and legal.

      Hope this helps, thanks

      • Ex AOL from SFO permalink
        July 2, 2010 9:29 am

        I have witnessed and had been part of this scam for three years. I left after I could not lead a crooked life of AOL teacher anymore. As AOL teachers there have been many many instances where we had brought physical cash in dollars from US to India (in the order of 10K and above). There is a limit for carry foreign currecy to india. We cannot bring in more than a few hunder dollars without declaring. But we beleived that the Guru’s grace saved us from the customs and also it is not difficult to hide currency. The customs folks are after jewellry and other gadgets. This money carrying is an open secret among AOL teachers who travel. But of course none would admit it openly.
        There is something called as hawala scam where currency exhange happens through alternative means and FEMA and others are bypassed. Needless to say AOL is a major player in the Hawala scam.

      • July 2, 2010 5:31 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        @EX from SFO?? Either you are lying or you have broken the law..

        Regarding lying: I am from SFO and have been here for the last 12 years……I know every single teacher here and no one here is ex to the best of my knowledge and there are over 100 teachers here now….

        Regarding breaking the law: If you indeed happen to be an ex and what you say is true, you have definitely broken the law and you need to be prosecuted!dont blame RS for this. I have been with RS for a long enough time and I know he doesn’t encourage anyone to break even the smallest of rules or laws.

        looks to me like this is a serious maligning campaign going on here with the same people posting under multiple IDs.

  4. Sincere Seeker permalink
    June 30, 2010 8:27 am

    The Art of Living ashram staff is getting extortion calls and SMSes threatening to defame the org for a ransom of Rs. 42 crores.

    2 wrongs don’t make a right.
    There is a way to contact the media or government to inform them if you know AoL is doing something illegal and if that’s the truth then the public has a right to know.
    Thousands if not millions of people are sacrificing their entire lives and hard earned money to AoL. It is our duty and “seva” if their lives and money are not going to the right purpose and if they are being deceived.
    There is a proper channel to do this and I have that channel open right now.
    Please feel free to contact me through the blog owner:

    • Anon permalink
      July 2, 2010 12:20 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      A don turned cinema producer is the one making allegations. Very credible eh!! Folks on this blog, use a little bit of your brains.

      I dont buy into all that sri sri does but some of these things seem to be well funded character degradation attempts by christian outlets!! first a bullet and then a land grab case by a “paul” someone!

      Anyone funding this blog too? 🙂

  5. freefall permalink
    June 30, 2010 9:16 am

    “The question is, “Does India only need seva?”. His explanation: “it is so expensive to maintain the ashrams.”

    AshramSSSSSS, he says, but it only goes to India, not to Canada, not to Germany, not to Poland, not anywhere else, but India.”

    I am an ex-AoL teacher from Mumbai. Today I have no sympathies left for AoL, however, as an Indian I find the above statements in poor taste.

    “I dare say that even the Indian chapters that want to do seva cannot use the money their local chapter raised with the courses. ”

    I can vouch for that.

    We used to reach out to the poor to distribute food and used clothes. None of this came from AoL kitty. One of our course participants was an orthopaedic surgeon. He sponsored crutches for about 50 physically challenged kids as donation from his own pocket. The event was hugely publicized by AoL as organization’s charity.

    The only seva that is charged to AoL is running of a free primary school in Bangalore Ashram. There are about 150 kids studying there and it is no doubt a good cause. However, all the teachers in the school are unpaid devotees of SSRS. Moreover, thi. s small school hardly consumes fraction of a fraction of a fraction of money collected in the name of seva.

    There are simply too many AoL volunteers collecting money in the name of too many “charity” schemes. Old timers will recall that few years back, “a dollar a day” scheme was launched with much fanfare targeting mainly NRIs and disciples from western countries. The purpose of the scheme was to establish a fund that would provide free education to poor children. “A dollar a day” banner was prominently displayed on various AoL sites. Then all of a sudden it simply disappeared. Does anyone know about what happened to the amount collected? How much amount was collected? Where is that fund for educating poor children? How many poor children are getting education through that fund? Ask your local chapter co-ordinator and see him/ her getting red faced.

    • answer@freefall permalink
      June 30, 2010 1:52 pm

      The ‘dollar a day’ program was started in the US. The money never went to that cause. When Bhanu-didi was asked which children’s photo’s were to be sent to which donors (the list was small then, the numbers of kids also small) her response was an annoyed “doesn’t matter, just take a photo and send it to someone on the list”. Details were to be made up, as westerners didn’t speak the children’s language. Each donor in those days was under the very sadly mistaken impression that they were sponsoring a particular child, therefore. What a scam. When this was brought to SSRS’s attention by one of the foreign teachers, and the question was asked if the money could just be given directly to the village families, since it didn’t seem to be making it to the kids this way (no decent uniforms provided, shabby thatched huts for the schoolrooms, while very nice kutirs were being constructed for foreign guests at that time, one or two teachers and not very qualified at that), his answer was that the parents would drink it all away. It is clear that from the outset, SSRS’s ashram dreams and family drank that money away. What a terrible eye-opener for innocent visitors from overseas who found it so strange. The scam has simply grown, the names for it changed, the money become several fortunes.

      In a perfect world, SSRS would wake up tomorrow, feel sorry, close the ashram, donating it to the State for education, give back the money, make his family give back all the money except to the place they started — lower-middle class, simple people with jobs. All the teachers would wake up, get jobs, and live normal lives, giving back all the funds stolen. The funds would be given to those intended for: poor who really need it, who work so hard in terrible jobs, when they can even find them.

      We all know that will never happen, though.

  6. June 30, 2010 1:34 pm

    When I was in the aol it was common practice to collect two checks for advance programs: one for the AOL and one for VVM. The AOL checks covered the expenses and the VVM check covered the course fee. The AOL money stayed in the country to pay for the basics of the course (like food, housing, hall rental with very little left over) and the money for VVM went to India. From what I can tell, it seems that AOL’s accounts seem on the up and up. AOL’s money comes from the basic courses, not from any other course. All the money for course fees from the all the advance programs (Part II, DSN, Blessings . . .) goes to VVM from what I can tell. At the end of the day AOL doesn’t make a whole lot of money. At least in the US, basic courses are still a smallish affair for the most part.

    Now VVM makes lots of money. When Sri Sri comes on tour, thousands of people come and lots of course fees are collected (for VVM) and cities raise $10000 to $25,000 for him to come to their city. This is above any expenses for holding these events. This money doesn’t stay in the US. It all goes to VVM and that’s it. I don’t know what happens with VVM’s money and I am not sure many do know.

    As far as AOL (the US chapter), I think they can claim clean book keeping. I don’t think the leaders in the US are cooking the books for AOL. AOL doesn’t make that much money and it supports two big city centers. I think it claims that it made around 4 million last year which isn’t a lot. I know of some churches who make well over 4 million a year and they just have one building. VVM, on the other hand, is anyone’s guess. I think it was structured this way with two separate organizations so that one abides by US laws and the other one doesn’t really have to. I could be wrong about this, but this is my take on it.

    • July 2, 2010 8:06 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      VVM Money does go to India. It is under FEMA regulation-so the amounts are audited. Yes, a more detailed breakdown would help resolve some of the skepticism.

      My church here in the US makes more than 100M$ a year! AoL/VVM is very very poor by those standards…!

  7. June 30, 2010 2:35 pm

    To Freefall:
    Rishi Nitya Pragya was my DSN teacher. On last day, he told lot about this Ashram School, he told that around 3000 students studying free, from under privileged families, the result of school is 100%, many student are toppers etc. etc. and asked us to donate for expenses of one child, more than 40 persons agreed on the spot.
    Now, you are claiming that only 150 kids are studying!
    So, they collect more than 1000 times in the name of these kids. There is no control on the use of funds collected for specific purpose.

    • Ron permalink
      July 1, 2010 11:57 pm

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)

      I am from the United States and I have personally visited the AoL Schools in India. There are definitely lot lot more than 150 kids. Definitely a couple of thousand at least.

      • mello permalink
        July 2, 2010 6:27 am

        Your use of the plural is a little confusing. When you say ‘AoL Schools’ do you mean the chain of schools across India named Sri Sri Ravishankar Vidya Mandir? Those definitely have a few thousand studying in them and they are self-funded with fees collected from the usually affluent parents who are followers of SSRS.

      • Stop personal attacks on this blog! permalink
        July 4, 2010 6:27 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        More than a couple of thousand in the ashram school.

  8. Soudhamini_registration_team permalink
    June 30, 2010 7:29 pm

    Reserve your flat today

    This where the money is. Bangalore real estate does not come cheap.

    Jai Gurudeva

    This contains a payment schedule for a sample unit size for each type of apartment viz. Studio, Studio Plus, 1BHK, 2BHK and 3BHK. To get the exact cost for your specific apartment, please contact us.

    Once you have been allotted your apartment, you will be sent a hard and soft copy of your specific floor plan as well as the matching payment schedule.

    Booked @ Rs 3100/sft

  9. Peaceful Warrior permalink
    June 30, 2010 11:19 pm

    This is a message to people who’ve been with AOL for a while.

    You came here to be free, yet it has only given you bondage. For a little bit of “knowledge” you’ve been used and abused. The answers don’t lie in doing more courses, or in following a movement – they only provide the illusion of progress. 20-40-40 or repeating a mantra won’t help you get you where you want to go. Meditation is about non-doing. It’s not about “seva”, or sitting in a corner with eyes closed. When you ask the question “Who am I”, the false I disappears on it’s own and what is left is just void. This is not some mystical state – it is your natural state. In this state, surrender happens – it is the blissful state, the peaceful state.

    Just operate from that place. Be free – learn to stand on your own, instead of using a guru, or the organization as a crutch.

    Also, “selfless service” carries a great danger – it beings ego – you begin to see yourself as “enlightened”, “evolved”. Enlightenment, whatever it means, is just about being sahaj – simple and natural. Not make believe like in AOL. The world will remain as it is. While AOL seems to help people in the short run, in the long run, it only creates fanatics. Just see how people react in a group – they lost their own thinking and act mindlessly. This is true of AOL mob as much as any other.

    It is only because of support of few good people that this organization has credibility. Please, wake up and see how this person is making people fanatics and blind followers, instead of making them aware. There is no need to attack AOL – just stop supporting it.

    • Manju permalink
      July 1, 2010 2:53 am

      so true, so absolutely true. Beautiful words, Peaceful Warrier. Ultimately let’s bring back our core values into our lives. I actually started thinking straight again after leaving the org. Phew! Thank GOD!

    • Tahir-ul-Qadri permalink
      July 1, 2010 8:40 pm

      A very apt observation. I hope there are more people with your views.

      • Anon permalink
        July 2, 2010 7:33 am

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        @peaceful warrior-How enlightening!! you definitely come across as neither peaceful nor a warrior!

    • sameer permalink
      February 2, 2011 8:27 pm

      As a person who understands a little something about knowing ‘self’ i totally agree with the views of peaceful warrior . Though I havent done any AOL courses, but his thoughts about self reliance, finding your answers yourself is definitely the answer to everything. Its about walking your path. I wouldnt go on to say ‘Never’ have a guru, but realise that even he will only show you the path, walking is left up to you.

      A small piece of advice to few people who are talking about seva, ‘Seva’ itself means giving selflessly, if you did seva- you did your job. If the money is being laundered or not, let it go, keep doing your good job the way it makes you feel happy.

      Love to all those who are talking about a great issue and Faith and Wishes to all who are walking their own paths with or with-out Gurus.

  10. mojo permalink
    July 1, 2010 12:16 am

    And in the same vein as Peaceful Warrior….. I have just stopped using certain words typical of a cult. I do not even try to get meanings of words like BLISS, VOID, SURRENDER, ENLIGHTENED ETC.
    These words are cliches used to confuse. They are gobbledygook . Part of my healing process was to stop using these words in normal conversation. I am not skeptical of SPIRITUALISM, but of self proclaimed SPIRITUALISTS. Spiritual to me simply means goodness of character.
    To live a normal life is blissful, enlightened surrender. That’s all 🙂

    • Anon permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:40 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      Healing from what? Your own foolishness? Too bad for you! One thing seems common here-this a forum of peanut sized brains!

      • Anon permalink
        July 4, 2010 5:26 pm


        We have nothing to gain by maligning AOL – as someone who has been cheated by these conmen, it’s our duty to tell the truth.

        Next time you put your hard earned money into AOL seva project think about what you have read here. If you want to devote your time and hard earned $$ into AOL, we can’t stop you!

  11. goneagain permalink
    July 1, 2010 2:56 am

    The judgement day is coming for AOL/SS – soon they will be exposed just like Nithy; Truth can’t be hidden forever. It comes out eventually.

  12. Former_AOL_Slave permalink
    July 1, 2010 4:34 am

    The success of AOL is not because of SK, sahaj or SSY.
    It is the way they entrap the individual later after the initial courses through the local groups, seva, guru grace and other BS and enslave the individual draining his money , time and crititical thinking.
    Understand the meaning of BLISS, VOID, SURRENDER, ENLIGHTENED but run when this is marketed again and again by AOL idiots.
    If one can do the AOL practices without the entanglement of the organization, for the newbie there may be some sustained value but the local groups will not allow you.
    AOL scam dogs & scum dogs will hound you to donate time, money, your service and have you sell your contacts for free.

    Peace Warrior’s statement is right on with,

    “Just operate from that place. Be free – learn to stand on your own, instead of using a guru, or the organization as a crutch. ”

    Nobody can pass and offload enlightenment by touch or by a glance. The individual soul needs to find and learn its way.
    There is really no fasttrack with AOL on spirituality guaranteed.

    • Anon permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:41 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      ex aol cheater?! 🙂 lol this group is totally funny!

  13. July 1, 2010 12:57 pm

    AoL now in an Art of Land deals

    Dog Firing and Land Grabbing, two events in one month!
    The Law of Karma has initiated its working. Ravi Shankar has to face all what he has done, right or wrong. let the Time decided.

  14. mohit_de_1977 permalink
    July 1, 2010 4:38 pm

    Here are the normal supporting sentiments expressed by the devotees of SRI X 2 RAVI SHANKAR –

    1. He uses the money for good causes – Hmm.. Interesting. Did somebody audit him or did you folks audited him and found out that all the money is accounted for. Can he provided audited reports with due taxation file?

    2. He spreads Love : Statistics – 72% of the devotees of Guruji have decided to go with Celibacy. Well that ain’t much of love is there. Statistics – out of these 72%, 93% of them spend more than 60% of their income for Guruji in Long term/ Short Term. Instead of spending on their ailing parents or other needy folks they spend on his YATRAS to US and other parts of the world.

    3. Guruji’s teaching cannot be interpreted until you become part of it and learn from him : I agree, once I get into AOL, I will learn everything like good old deciples have and have attainted nirvana. See the points above – Norvana through money .. SPARE US.

    4. Guruji has done so much for the world : Yes and more for himself – He is a broker who takes commision between needy and the deciples.

    5. HE is GOD : Get yourself a break. If he were a GOD, he won’t need money. Tickets @US to his crappy workshops range from 600 USD to 27k USD.

    6. HE is cute : If he is cute, then I am Superman.

    7. HE was in Iraq bringing peace and smiles on faces of people there and how much money flowed through his Ashram is not investigated by government, perhaps he is a conduit to ministers’ stashed money!!

    8. HE was in Sri Lanka to hobnob with LTTE brokering peace again and how much money went through Ashram a/c for arms deals is not investigated!!

    9. HE keeps going to trouble locations with regular visits to USA so that monthly remittances can be verified and distributed to other locations as generous donations!!

    10. HE never gives a direct answer if you shoot a question out of ignorance. HE will ask your innerself to answer or state your question has the answer! If you know to ask for an answer, you will bot shoot the question!!

    11. If regular interviews are not aired by leading TV Channels, he stagemanages per week/month an incident so that people follow him and attach themselves sympathetically and financially.

    12. Art of Cheating is one mastered by all sadhus and swamis of India since there is enough money to be taken out of ministers, babus, rich business men (who can park the black money ) and general weak public.

    Lord save them from the demon!!

    • Anon permalink
      July 2, 2010 12:22 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      $27K-which course are you talking about! Crappy workshops? Crap gets filtered in US fast! Could no have survived such a long time….

    • Anon permalink
      July 2, 2010 8:09 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      @Mohit-are u a communist or a christian? !

  15. Durga Mata permalink
    July 1, 2010 4:59 pm

    I do not understand why AoL is accused for land grabbing. It bought the land from the Co-op. What is criminal about that? Is it not the farmer and his family that commited a crime by taking money from Paul and then selling the land to the Co-op?

  16. Anon permalink
    July 1, 2010 6:52 pm

    Sorry guys – but this “don turned journalist” guy sounds more like a fixer than a credible person. RS may be on the right side this once. Just wait and watch!

  17. KLIM-Student permalink
    July 1, 2010 8:35 pm

    OK, I have been following KLIMs blog and this one too and it looks like KLIM is being made a hero(ine). I am a former student fo KLIM and I am not a a big devotee of Sri Sri either, though i do respect him. I do practice sudarshan kriya and it has helped me immensely in my recovery from a stroke. I

    I can definitely state that KLIM is not as much of a victim as s(he) claims to be! I can promise you that at least 500 other students will stand by what I say. KLIM, if you can come out in the open, I am sure a lot of your students would come out in the open too and we can have a healthy debate. Hiding behind a veil and making accusations really doesn’t lend any credibility to your accusations.

    • Tahir-ul-Qadri permalink
      July 1, 2010 8:50 pm

      Dear Klim-Student,

      In this article Klim is not stating any story pertaining to his/her victimization. If you have any valid counter arguments against the financial misappropriations stated in this posting, please do so. Most of the points raised here seems valid, although I’m not in the inner circles of AOL.

      • KLIM-Student permalink
        July 1, 2010 11:52 pm


        There is enough transparency in any international organization-I would encourage you to go and search the financials and reports and make your own judgement rather than from blogs written by “disgruntled former employees”. Random baseless maligning on blogs is not an intelligent way to look at the problem.

        The way these blogs are written, it portrays a really bad image and just like media sensationalism, it is easy to go with the negative flow rather than see the positive light.

        Btw, AoL has over 10,000 teachers and less than 20 teachers (like KLIM/WhistleBlower etc) have left the organization. It is a shame that they choose to write grossly misleading blogs.

        This blog in particular is immature because it shares copyrighted content (like sudarshan kriya notes). I am surprised that AoL is not pursuing legal action on this one!.)

  18. WhistleBlower permalink
    July 1, 2010 9:29 pm

    Dear Klim-student, who is not a big devotee of SriSri(!!),
    The issues we have raised in this blog are not about Klim’s identity! If you can reply to any issues that have been raised here then do so. You say you want to have a healthy debate, then go on, join the existing healthy debate in this forum.

    No ex-teacher in their right mind would use his/her real name. AOL is a cult and it is for the safety of those leaving that their identities should be kept anonymous. Many times we receive emails from ex-teachers with their real names but we never publish these.
    As your email shows AOL is always interested in attacking individuals rather than responding to the issues.

    You say you know Klim’s identity, to the degree that you have identified yourself as “Klim-student”, then why do you want Klim to name himself/herself? What is your identity? Surely there is more to your life than being Klim’s student? And even though you say you know Klim, you don’t seem to be sure of his/her sex!

    And what difference it would make to the issues raised in this blog if Klim is Henry or Hari, Patty or Parvin?
    You are urging Klim to come out in the open. Hey, Klim has been in the open for months through his/her blog and so many people have benefited from it. You are the one who is hiding and need to come out in the open. You ,who claim that you are not a big devotee of SriSri (!!), seem to have only one aim and that is to derail the debate here. Instead of debating any of the many issues raised in this blog, you want to attack Klim in time-honored fashion of AOL/SriSri!

    My dear, there are thousands upon thousands of teachers and volunteers all over the world who have had similar experiences in AOL and have left this fraud organization. What are you going to do? Attack all of them one by one?
    Even if Klim gives us his/her name, we will not publish it in this blog, so don’t waste your time here! If you claim you know who Klim is then contact him/her directly and tell him/her whatever you have got to say!

    • KLIM-Student permalink
      July 1, 2010 11:41 pm

      WhistleBlower, you are funny- thousands and thousands of people leaving the organization 🙂 Just because you have a prejudice against AoL dont just generalize it. As per your analogy then, millions are joining then. And there is no notion of join or leave the organization for most people- people who benefit from practises and or teachings stay and those who don’t dont stay. It is that simple. nobody is being bound in any manner-

      Have some basis for your arguments-show financials and or proof of your accusations. Then we can have a valid argument. I think that tax agencies and international law is good enough to hold organizations accountable for their actions and 30 years is a long time. If you have a genuine concern, prove it rather than make random baseless statements on a blog.

      I am bringing KLIM in the picture just because i know her and I know that she had a huge number of complaints against her from her own students-I know there was a showdown between her and sri sri but. I dont care of the outcome neither do I care about her but I was just flabbergasted by how she has tuned the tables. All the things that her students accused her of, she is accusing AoL of – funny eh! 🙂

  19. Anon permalink
    July 2, 2010 3:07 am

    (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
    ILLEGAL FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS OR Is this an ILLEGAL WEBSITE? See some lawyer’s posting under sudarshan kriya notes.

    Let the law and the truth prevail! It will!

  20. The Dude permalink
    July 2, 2010 3:30 am

    @Klim Student

    This kind of ad-hominem attacks won’t work. Your comment has no substance and is pure opinion. If you have facts, we’d love to hear them.

    Sudarshan kriya notes are not “copyrighted”. Sudarshan Kriya is only a “trademark”. You can teach the same technique in any other name -like for example rebirthing 😉 – and you’ll be fine. In Part 1 shares many processes taken from other organizations. Part 2 meditations, and padmasadhna are TM techniques. The person on shaky legal ground is RS.

    There is no transparency in AOL. People have seen the records, and it raises red flags. It’s only because VVM is in India, where financial regulations are lax, and people can bribe govt. officials, that VVM gets away with financial fraud. You’ll be surprised how long a fraud can go on – Bernie Madoff had been duping investors since the 70’s – and that too in a country like US, where corruption is much less rampant than India.

    Lastly just having numbers behind you does not make you enlightened or right. By that token Ayatollah Khomeni would also be enlightened.

  21. WhistleBlower permalink
    July 2, 2010 4:15 am

    Dear Klim-student,
    From “not a a big devotee of Sri Sri” seems you have metamorphosed to a full-fledged AOL PR agent! So come on tell us your real name (as you were so keen on knowing Klim’s real name) or at least choose a more representative alias than Klim-student. How about AOL-full paid-PR-Agent-on-SkyWalkerBlog or similar? Come on use all that creativity that SriSri claims comes out upon regular practise of SK .You said you practice it regularly, right? So at least show more creativity! Or are you obsessed with Klim?
    Remember what SriSri said about your hate/dislike being like a super glue? Seems you are so obsessed with Klim that even for your name you choose Klim-student? And when you choose your new name, make sure you let us know what it is, not just choosing “Ron” or Anon or whatever to give the image of several people. Unless of course you suffer from multiple personality disorder?! Besides, what are you afraid of that you are “hiding behind a veil and making accusations”? By revealing your name, SriSri will give you a big cheque, that is if you are not already on his fully-paid-staff list!

    You say you were Klim’s student; what an ungrateful student you are, esp. that you say you benefited from a course that Klim taught you (doing voluntary service and he/she probably even organised it too! More than we can say about SriSri who got your course fee, doing nothing! How much did you pay?). Maybe you should show some gratitude to your teacher rather than trying to attack her/him. By the way, did you have your stroke before doing AOL course or after? And maybe if you are recovering from a stroke you shouldn’t be spending so much time checking our blogs and responding to every comment! Maybe you should offer your services to AOL counter-blogs which are suffering from severe atrophy and begging for contributions!

    And I wasn’t trying to be funny re numbers leaving organization. I was just stating facts that SriSri and his lackeys are well aware of. Only 1 person out of 10 who does AOL course stays around. And now seems even volunteers/teachers are also waking up to the fact that AOL is a business (a fraudulent one at that too) masquerading as a charity, so they are also leaving in huge numbers. Indeed for every teacher who is still with the organization, you can find at least 10 teachers who have left. People leave because they get to know the truth about AOL/SriSri.

    And as you see everything we say on this blog we have based on AOL/SriSri’s own official statements.
    And if you want proof re accounts, you try to get them from AOL. We would love to see them too!
    Good luck!! So many have tried with no success! AOL should provide detailed accounts for all the fees/donations it collects from all over the world under the banner of a registered charity.It claims that spends the money on charity projects, except that we know it doesn’t! Don’t attack us for telling what we know. Ask AOL to provide all the accounts if they have nothing to hide!

    And please do realize that no matter how much you attack Klim (or whoever you think Klim is) will not make an iota of the difference to the issues we have raised in this blog.
    We all know how SriSri and his PR agents try to defame any teacher who leaves or speaks up. So if anything, you are just showing AOL strategy of dealing with ex-teachers, esp. those who speak up. Go ahead, be my guest. All ex-teachers are well familiar with these tactics. At some stage AOL PR even threatened Klim with a blog to expose him/her, but upon reflection they realized it wasn’t such a good idea! Shame, otherwise all world would see what a loving guru SriSri and his lackeys are!!

    Anyway, as I said before doesn’t look like you have anything to contribute to this debate or refute any facts in this blog and your only interest seems to be attacking Klim. Seems you are not practicing any knowledge from your part1 course either (even more hilarious if you are a part1 teacher and parroting all that in your courses!). What happened to: not attacking the postman, accepting people, not seeing intention behind other people’s mistakes, present moment is inevitable, not blaming others, etc, etc.?

    Pass a message to SriSri for me. Too late to attack Klim. Even if you manage to silence Klim, there are now hundreds that will carry on Klim’s work. Even media is slowly waking up to the fraud you are and soon Govt. depts and tax agencies will be knocking on your door too!

  22. WhistleBlower permalink
    July 2, 2010 4:24 am

    This comment was posted on AOL counterblog artoflivingfreefree. The only comment under its last post and yes, you guessed it, no reply to it after 2 weeks! May be “Klim-student” will have a better luck getting any account details from AOL. That would be a much better use of your time Klim-student/Ron (and rest of AOL PR agents) rather than visiting our blogs and threatening us with legal action and what not or trying to attack/defame Klim!

    “Sandeep said…
    I am a neutral third-party observer and wish to offer some suggestions.

    When AOL charges huge amounts of money for courses, it creates suspicions in people’s minds as to where the money is going. After all, service projects are being done by volunteers. How significant is the expense in that case?

    Praising the good works of the Guru is not going to change minds. People need evidence which is detailed rather than anecdotal.

    It would be great if you could devote some time to publishing a detailed breakdown of the spending. What are the recurring expenditures? How much money is spent on the service projects, travel, upkeep of various Ashrams, etc. How much money is being channeled to the Sumeru Group?

    People are falling prey to the allegations of vile critics because some of these questions have remain unanswered.

    June 20, 2010 5:08 PM”

  23. KLIM-Student permalink
    July 2, 2010 4:32 am

    Whistleblower, even responding to this blog is a waste of time. I am not any sri sri PR agent or anything. You think sri sri has no better thing to do than to attack KLIM. KLIM is a fraud and a “loser” (in every sense of the word) and you to seem to be similar…all losers do flock together..AoL is growing in leaps and bounds and sometimes blogs like these actually help in its growth….In fact most people anyways wish aol were smaller and not so big!!!

    Adios Useless Folks!

    Maybe you will be something constructive next lifetime!

  24. Anonymous permalink
    July 2, 2010 4:40 am

    (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
    All the brouhaha for nothing at all?

    Go to and search for Art of Living Foundation- All financials/numbers are there!

    • The Dude permalink
      July 2, 2010 12:02 pm

      No all financial numbers are not there. That is only numbers for AOL-US. It does not show the $$ going to india. All the money from Part 2 courses, etc. goes to VVM – which is a black hole. Ditto for care for children.

  25. Abhilash Shastry permalink
    July 2, 2010 4:52 am

    @KLIM Student:

    “I think that tax agencies and international law is good enough to hold organizations accountable for their actions and 30 years is a long time.”

    30 years! Another big lie from AoL. I attended advanced course in Bangalore Ashram in 1997. My relatives who were living in Bangalore at that time had not even heard of this organization. The fact is that before 1995 AoL was practically unknown. Then it started in competition with SSY of Rishi Prabhakar (another student of MMY). Initially, the rivalry between the two was so much that if you had done SSY, you were not allowed to attend AoL course. My teacher Manisha Mehta (Mumbai) told that SSY was sending spies into AoL to steal SK and hence this precaution was necessary. Later SSRS came up with an innovative idea to undermine SSY. He started anointing his lackeys as “Rishi” so that the founder of SSY, Rishi Prabhakar would also appear as one of SSRS’s lackey. His trick worked.


    “ILLEGAL FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS OR Is this an ILLEGAL WEBSITE? See some lawyer’s posting under sudarshan kriya notes.
    Let the law and the truth prevail! It will!”

    Ever wondered why AoL is not initiating legal action despite such clear provocations? Because they know that a substantial part of SK is plagiarized from popular ancient techniques. A court case will expose their fraud.

  26. mojo permalink
    July 2, 2010 4:59 am

    KLIM STUDENT is on a rampage hahahaha:-)))))))))) Klim owes you NOTHING. And where did you get figures of the drop-out rate? From AoL? It will be as authentic as other foolish claims that AoL makes.

    P.S – Good going Klim, keep it up!!! You’re getting under their skin and have put them on the defense… )))))))

    P.P.S- KLIM student, PLEASE keep writing. Your contributions are priceless! Apart from giving us a good laugh it’s also keeps the posts interesting and keeps them going!!!!!!!!

    • KLIM-Student permalink
      July 2, 2010 5:20 am

      @mojo–I will do you a favor and write my last post on this page. I really should have followed the advice I was given-“if you wrestle with a pig, you never win and you can only get dirty” 🙂

      Regarding AoL numbers- I have seen it with my own eyes. Actually in KLIM’s area, the numbers almost doubled since she left. Sometimes it is good to get rid of some garbage……. 🙂

      Anyways goodbye to this blogosphere…Moving beyond KLIM bashing..I have better things to do in life!

      • Smiling Monkey permalink
        July 3, 2010 5:44 pm

        I thought the Guru aimed to spread his knowledge among everyone in the world and enlighten and purify them with it. He even wanted the ‘terrorist’ who tried to take his own life to come to his ashram and feel the love and the light.

        Why would he want to ‘get rid of’ someone and label a person as ‘garbage’? Why not get rid of the garbage inside the person and not the person him/herself?

        You are creating a very poor impression of AOL in here by acting so agitated and depressed. Perhaps, even you are aware of it, hence, the not a big follower of RS bit.

  27. Anon permalink
    July 2, 2010 5:13 am

    (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
    @shastry- You sound like a person who doesn’t understand copyright! Pls read the copyright law first and then we can talk.

    Regarding your comment on KLIM student, AoL was founded in 1982. It is 28 years.

  28. Abhilash Shastry permalink
    July 2, 2010 6:12 am


    “@shastry- You sound like a person who doesn’t understand copyright! Pls read the copyright law first and then we can talk.”

    It is you who need to understand copyright . Copyright protects original works of literature, music, drama, and other intellectual pursuits. Do kriya notes look like any of these? Don’t you want to know the difference among copyright and patent and trademark.

    Please go ahead and take a look on AoL’s official website:

    In front of Sudarshan Kriya there is a small circle and inside this circle is a capital “R”, which simply means that it is a registered trademark – not a copyright, not a patent. All this means is that anyone else cannot use the word “Sudarshan Kriya” to sell his goods/services. Only SSRS can sell his goods/services in the name of “Sudarshan Kriya”, which he is doing with extraordinary flair.

    Do not just swallow AoL propaganda. And next time do some better homework if you sincerely want to defend AoL scam.

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 2, 2010 6:29 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      Abhilash–Phew!! can you please read the below and understand this- Looks like you just glanced the website and came up with your crappy statement. Read the below properly.

      Click to access circ1.pdf

      Sudrashan kriya notes are copyrighted items of the Art of Living foundation. Scanning them and putting them up on a webpage like this is a violation of the copyright, especially when someone signs not to do it.

      Anyways, I dont need to sort this out. Let AoL do what they have to do. I dont think people there dont have that time for crap like this.

      You > 60 years right? You sound like a bird brain to me 🙂

      • dayalu permalink
        July 4, 2010 10:04 pm

        This Guy/ Gal, Klim’s student is hilarious. He/she claims not to be a devotee, but knows everything about Kriya notes. Who told you first of all that Kirya notes is copyrighted?

  29. Rajesh Ramani permalink
    July 2, 2010 6:48 am

    We should now try updating Wikipedia entry for Ravi with the latest land grab news from credible references like economic times.

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 2, 2010 6:56 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      And say what?- Thats it is under investigation? Let the case be solved first! how ready are people to jump and act at a “don turned director’s” allegations!! shows the immaturity and crowd mentality of the frequenters here! The same crowd was trying to punce on the shooting saying it was an insider and it ended up being a funny incident!! Be patient and see how it unfolds!

      • Rajesh Ramani permalink
        July 2, 2010 9:18 am

        The fake shooting incident proved the hypocrycsy of Ravi Ravi all the more. All that forgiveness bull shit and ravi ravi’s lying so blatantly. He gave two fake versions of his witness in the times of india interview.

      • July 2, 2010 5:23 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        dude Rajesh, get a life! Ok imagine this- a bullet lands near sonia gandhi or manmohan singh, would it be OK? would it be called fake? The whole security system of the country would have been shaken upside down!!

        Give some credit to SSRS for handling the situation lightly

  30. Anonymous permalink
    July 2, 2010 7:01 am


    “I am a faculty at Stanford University…….”
    “Btw,no one asked you to respect Stanford professors. We dont look for it in blogs, especially the ones like this one.” – your comment in response to another post.

    If you are not looking for it, then why should you even mention that you are a Stanford Professor.

    “Anonymous, please take your family to a 4 day retreat at the presentation center and I would be surprised (along with food) if you paid less than 250$.”

    AOL collected $250 per participant and not for the entire family. The course did not even run into 4 days as advertised but was cut short by half-a-day giving flimsy excuses, to save expenses. Further, I have not said that this amount was not justified. I wanted to know whether the entire collected amount of $37,500 was expended towards the course. Because it was collected as expenses and not as fee. Why do you think that the participants were asked to vacate by 10 a.m. on the 4th day. Isn’t it clear that it was done to save the 4th day’s rent. Why are the expense reports not made available. If you have them, please post it on this blog.

    “Regarding money in the US, every single dollar is accounted for – I personally had the same skepticism and i did a detailed study of their financials and I was satisfied. Let me tell you this, the IRS is smart enough to nab any organization doing anything incorrect.”

    This is exactly what I was looking for. To get the accounting for every single dollar towards the expenses. Agreed that IRS is smart, but some organizations could be smarter. Please let us know how you got hold of their detailed financials, which will help in satisfying many “skeptics” on this blog.

    “Knowledge cant be free-I dont know where this train of thought even comes from.”

    From you, not from me.

    “Till the day comes when all universities stop charging fees, the 200-400$ whatever it is that AoL charges is totally justified.”

    Does justification of AOL charges depends on whether the universities charge fees or not. The faculties in universites are well paid and not volunteering. Talk about universities not charging fees. By a faculty of Stanford!

    “And on a personal note, I would encourage healthy skepticism on something but not cynicism, Sangeetha Jani was a wonderful gentle teacher and I personally benefited immensely from the course.”

    It is very convenient to divert from the facts by alluding it to skepticism and cynicism. That is the last resort of a cynic, who refuses to see things as they are.
    Sangeetha Jani barely made her appearance allowing Part 1 teachers to lead through many of the sessions. The last day was drowned so much by marketing campaigns. Frequently she was sensationalizing with “terrorist attack” for the bullet-for-scaring-dogs incident. She appeared to be least interested about the course than keeping track of this incident. Nothing was natural in her speech and appeared to be full of drama.

    • neutral-observer permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:28 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      @anonymous-why dont u do this-call up presentation center and ask for rates for such an event with a hall, kitchen, rooms and and include food in the mix. lets see where you get to-OK? I have organized my departments events there, so I know what it is. 250$ is actually a great rate

      I hate to ridicule people but I think I am going to do that with you now….Are you a fresh of the boat east indian desi who leads a life by nickeling and diming to save for a house?? 🙂 Sorry but i couldn’t resist asking that.

      For AoL financials fo to and you can make detailed queries on that…But yes for detailed queries, you have to pay-too bad those agencies nickel and dime too! 🙂

      Knowledge should be free is a silly concept which probably comes along with the nickeling and diming attitude . I dont even wish to comment more on it.

      When you are not natural, you tend to see everyone that way- Sangeetha Jani is a lovely lady and I too did a course with her for the first time- I thought she was brilliant…. In a part-2 course you were supposed to be meditating and not wondering what the teacher is up to…too bad that you didn’t enjoy it. Good luck!

      • profhughakston permalink
        July 2, 2010 9:31 am

        @neutral-observer ,
        ” fresh of the boat east indian desi ”
        Manners, my dear, manners!
        Don’t make racist remarks.

        You have done Part 2 course, but have obviously forgotten Part1 knowledge points . What about:
        1. Don’t be a football of other people’s opinion.
        2.Accept people and situation as they are.

        BTW, it’s not your fault. In any AOL course/satsang or blog, whenever someone starts asking genuine questions Aol people replies in 3 typical ways:
        1. Make fun of the person or,
        2. Say they are of limited intelligence or,
        3. Say they are indulging in “.Kutark”

        Spirituality teaches you tolerance. But till now I haven’t come across a single Aol people who can handle the slightest criticism of SSRS or Aol.

      • @Neutral-observer permalink
        July 2, 2010 12:50 pm

        Gee, ‘neutral’, you don’t sound a bit neutral to me!

        If indeed the person you attacked is an “East Indian Desi….saving for a house”, at least he/she is working, as opposed to living off others’ work like most of the full time teachers at AOL and their leader HHSSRS!

        It sounds like if you are not full time you can’t possibly know what the full timers here have posted.

        From what I’ve heard/know of AOL, it is quite corrupt, very hypocritical (not walking the walk, just talking the talk), especially in India where we have so much competition for jobs.

        Maybe you’ve been totally clean in your dealings for the organization, but that does not mean everyone is. I’ve met dozens of people who took the SK and some who even became teachers, but left because of the immoral and corrupt goings on they witnessed, and that some, as they moved ‘up’ (more like down) in the organization were encouraged to perform.

        These things are not a reflection on your person, of course, but the people I’m thinking of are quite educated, and didn’t care for the brainwashing and worship of a man as God part very much, as well as some other things which I will not mention here, as they are very distasteful.

        Again, at least whomever this anonymous is, if they are scrimping, they are working, unlike the lazy people who decide it’s just too hard to compete in the world, and retire to AOL for their livings.

      • neutral-observer permalink
        July 2, 2010 6:36 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        @pro-hug, I appreciate your feedback, nothing racist in it, especially if I am in Art of Living and praising Sangeetha Jani, who also happens to be “desi”. Like i said in my post, I was just having a friendly dig.

        No one is against any negative feedback on AoL ort Sri Sri. I have myself given direct feedback to Sri Sri on many issues and I have found him to be quite receptive to the feedback. Not just me but many people have given him feedback on issues and he has been willing to help and change with whatever is needed. What i do find offensive is the many maligning statements in this blog which seem to stem from rather hateful elements.

        the other poster – HHSSRS is not depending on anyone to make his ends meet. He is providing some sort of education to the world and he has every right to charge for it. That is the reason why i linked AoL being free to education being free. I dont know about others but most of the people I have introduced to the course have found it to be benificial at all levels.

    • Radha permalink
      July 2, 2010 4:42 pm

      She appeared to be least interested about the course than keeping track of this incident. Nothing was natural in her speech and appeared to be full of drama.

      I second that Anon. I have met her even while I was in Mumbai. I found her to be totally fake, trying to talk like her Guru. Also she is more interested in flaunting her Bollywood followers. My cousin told me that she is a party girl? Is it true that she is married to RS?

      • July 2, 2010 5:06 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        ha ha ha! well looks like the same person is posting under multiple IDs just to malign folks- Married to RS! What a joke! Get a life dude-for sure this is a guy posting under the name Radha!

  31. July 2, 2010 8:30 am

    (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
    Art of Living in Pakistan! Look at the faces of people there!! Speaks more than the volumes of garbage which this site does!

    • Rajesh Ramani permalink
      July 2, 2010 9:15 am

      Thats called advertising which AOL spends quite a lot of money. I was myself part of one such photo op so called seva. Glad I could see the hypocryscy of the organigation and the guru first hand.

      • Auditor - to be fair permalink
        July 2, 2010 12:42 pm

        Previously posted the link to the Attorney General of California, which clearly showed that CA had “rejected” status for AOL for 2008-2009 fiscal year, suddenly now reads as “accepted”, so it looks like the tax people are accepting whatever was submitted by their accountant. The IRS forms, publically available, show this person to be the one holding all books and doing this accounting and taxes for AOL:

        Balmer Nelson Van Mersbergen
        504 N. 4th Street
        Ste 302
        Fairfield, IA 52556
        (641) 472-4773

        I’m sure this person will be happy to respond to any serious inquiries about the finances of this company which says it’s a charity.

        I personally would not rely on some place like the one posted here “guidestar”, another .org I’d want to go with the .gov sites for real information on where to give my money.

        But again, just because the IRS says it’s fine, doesn’t always mean anything — witness the hanky-panky of Bernie Madoff and so many others. It took years to catch them in their business swindling. Why anyone things a charity might not try the same thing, is beyond me.

        When deciding how to donate money, it’s probably best to first check charity status (offically, at .gov sites), try to see full financials, including who was paid how much and when, etc. from the organization itself, but even more importantly: Go to see the projects they are claiming for yourself. If millions are claimed to be spent on this or that village, go there and see it for yourself. Or call someone who lives nearby and ask them (someone not in the organization). If you find too many examples where the work was not performed, it should be a red flag.

        It sounds like some posting on this site have first hand “red flag” information of this type, and know that the money, at least in India, is being misappropriated. I have no idea how you check that in India.

      • July 2, 2010 5:08 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        Mr Rajesh-Photo Op and Advertisement! How pathetic- If its not clear to your pea sized brain, this is from a course and even if u tried to, you couldnt make photo ops like this. stop being so silly and pathetic.

      • July 2, 2010 5:17 pm

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        Thanks! This is good information and it actually does show some good progress . Yes I hope the VVM records can be shared too.

  32. Peaceful Warrior permalink
    July 2, 2010 3:15 pm

    @Neutral Observer

    Few points to consider

    1. RS, and teachers say all the time that money from AOL courses goes to seva projects. If you’ve been in AOL for a while you know this is not true.

    2. While asking for donations they say that 2% goes to administration, rest goes in service. This is another lie.

    3. There is no accountability of funds raised in the name of educating poor kids in ashram schools. There is some token work, but considering the size of AOL, I’m very surprised that it is just one small school.

    There is nothing wrong with making money in a proper manner – but these issues are glaring. Either RS is cheating, or he is super incompetent (which I doubt). For a teacher of spirituality to lie so blatantly, and with such impunity raises a lot of red flags.

    The truth is that AOL is a business – something RS will not admit in public, lest all the free volunteering and service that teachers do would come to an end.

  33. Radha permalink
    July 2, 2010 6:11 pm

    Anonymous permalink
    July 2, 2010 5:06 pm

    ha ha ha! well looks like the same person is posting under multiple IDs just to malign folks- Married to RS! What a joke! Get a life dude-for sure this is a guy posting under the name Radha!

    Who am I maligning ” dude”, Sangeeta or Ravi?

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:38 pm

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      i dont know whom you are maligning, you are for sure making a fool of yourself!

  34. coward permalink
    July 2, 2010 6:18 pm

    What would happen if she she kiwi kankar ji be our prime minister?

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:36 pm

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      Would be much better than a government run by an Italian!

  35. goneagain permalink
    July 2, 2010 6:33 pm

    It appears that the AOL Mob/SS strategy is to flood and attack with angry/bullshit remarks to derail the clean information from legitimate ex. AOLers/volunteers. Apparently it is working: skywalker should only post messages which is thoughtful and provides clear reasoning/answers to the questions.

    • Near permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:55 pm

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)

      1. There is free speech for sure. It is respected and all opinions are fine. Using that to randomly post any unverified claims is not acceptable.
      2. At least KLIMs blog was thoughtful and smart in some ways (though as some people mentioned here, she was portraying herself as a victim when she was a culprit per many people in the foundation) but this blog is a blatant violation of copyrights and confidential notes which were obtained after signing disclosures. Just to prove one’s identity, one canot be doing such things. Just like AoL has gone on the offensive against a don turned director in India for extortion, I think they should go behind this blog in all possible legal ways. Most AoL people whom i spoke to about this blog say that it is a waste of time to go behind this blog and many even discouraged me from posting things here. There is definitely no organized agenda to insert random statements here.

      • mojo permalink
        July 2, 2010 9:03 pm

        this blog is a blatant violation of copyrights and confidential notes which were obtained after signing disclosures.

        I can’t speak for others but I was made to sign some legal document immediately after TTC and getting these notes. I was not given any time to consult with lawyers or other experts. Neither was I forewarned about this document. This is signing under duress. And since all this happened in India Ashram, this document stands no chance ( and the case will not be admitted either ) in Indian Courts. In fact, what will be challenged is the business ethics because AFTER a participant PAYS the fees for TTC he/ she can be under no obligation to the org. This practice would therefore be categorized as bonded labor- which is illegal.

      • goneagain permalink
        July 3, 2010 12:11 am

        Good question – why wont they go after the SK notes published? Wonder what will happened to if the truth comes out that SS stole from “Rebirthing/TM” etc.
        It is very clear there is concerted effort to silence anyone telling whats going on behind the closed doors. Why don’t you explain where the money is going and how SS relatives diverting all the funds to their companies and personal development. Apparent none of you ever provided (using various names but style looks like one or two individual) anything to prove that. Apparently this tactics didn’t work for Nithy, and it wont work for you guys either. You guys are just pushing more and more people to come out and talk about their bad experiences.

        Anyway – what was the deal between SS/Nithy – that would be some interesting story if you want to share.

      • Anonymous permalink
        July 4, 2010 2:51 am

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        @ goneagain-TTC agreement- Signing under stress !! Gimme a break!!- Usually people are given 2-3 months before they become teachers!! This site is bordering insanity and giving all excuses for violations. Mojo, along with skywalker and whistleblower you should be taken to court as well! Defend yourself there!

      • Anonymous permalink
        July 4, 2010 2:54 am

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        Last comment was for @mojo .

        @goneagain- People running businesses from sri sri’s money. That is another ridiculous accusation..Businesses make and sell products-nothing wrong with it! If they have clean records, whats wrong?

  36. JAN permalink
    July 2, 2010 6:40 pm

    Pity the students of the so-called Stanford faculty 🙂 Just wish he/she is not as stupid in academics as being here 🙂

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 2, 2010 7:47 pm

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      Jan=Radha= Dude…

      At least be smart enough to pick some intelligent names else post as anonymous!!

      This website is seriously pathetic!!

      • Radha permalink
        July 2, 2010 9:16 pm

        Jan=Radha= Dude…

        Paranoia at it’s best!!! These AoL guys are seriously stupid. Is that why you are defending a cult? Or are you too stupid to see how damaging cults can be? Geez!!!

      • The Dude permalink
        July 3, 2010 3:48 am

        For the record…I don’t know who Radha and Jan are.

        And seriously Anon – that is all you can criticize the website for ?

        Stupid comments come with free speech. That’s the nature of the internet blogs in general – except, of course AOL ones where each comment is vetted ;).

        Hope we can move beyond useless name calling, and have more meaningful discussions.

      • JAN permalink
        July 3, 2010 9:35 am

        Stop bullshitting man!!!!!!!! I’m not Radha nor have I ever known her!!!!!!
        You are the pathetic one!!!!!! Get a life!!!!!! I’m clearing your point because i don’t want guys like you negate the effect of KLIM and this blog.

        I am from India and but not living there, and I know a lot of my friends, and some relatives caught in the web of AOL, and I know how brainwashed and how irrational they are!! And obviously their JGD and “!!! “after all the comments freaks me out every time I chat with them or mail them, not forgetting their advances to find an AOL course for me where Im residing!

      • JAN permalink
        July 3, 2010 9:46 am

        Also I commented about the Stanford guy cos he/she proved he/she’s so biased/irrational/ridiculing others in his comments, As an academic myself, I know how detrimental such a prof- if he/shes one , could prove to students.
        So is Anonymous=self proclaimed faculty of stanford 😉
        If you can’t stand criticisms, and counter them with intelligence and proof, you may seriously think about shutting your mouth 😉 its pathetic to see such poor comments , I mean to see someone accusing myself as someone else to prove his cult loyalty =))

    • Stop personal attacks on this blog! permalink
      July 4, 2010 2:56 am

      (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
      Jan, radha, Anonymous-everyone please stop personal attacks on this blog. This is a serious waste of time and a distraction from any issues. Both the pro and the against people, please show some restraint in demeanor.

      • JAN permalink
        July 4, 2010 9:09 am

        @Stop personal attacks on this blog!
        Your words are taken 🙂

  37. SelfSeeker permalink
    July 2, 2010 11:28 pm

    To the people who are arguing that there is tight “audit” in the tax system, and to check guidestar for all the financial details etc. – please remember that the audit system is nearly not perfect. AOL finances are certainly not transparent. Else we would not have the Enron, Madoff, and other scandals, some things just take time. AOL’s time too shall come.

    There are some scandals that will continue to exist for years, and decades until enough people are fed up and raise a stink. Art of Living is one such scandal, and the complexity with it (unlike Madoff or others) is that the spirituality element and the claim of “non-profit” gives people the guilt or false impression of attacking someone innocent.

    As a volunteer (in the bay area), anytime I asked my teachers about the money aspect, the response was always a pre-packaged one (5 or 6 standard lines that they must have received in the teacher’s packet). If I asked any follow-up or clarification questions about the details, then again there was a standard answer – that my mind is filled with doubt and only when I get rid of doubt can I move forward in realizing my SELF, or that I have not been doing kriya regularly, and that the gain from AOL is much more than the money one invests. After a certain point, it was always Blah …Blah and more of it.

    Why can’t AOL claim it is a business similar to other for-profit business orgs.? Say that knowledge is not free. Similar to other self-help orgs. that charge money, AOL also can demand money … but they first should accept and act like it is a business. Why the hypocrisy?

  38. The Dude permalink
    July 3, 2010 4:09 am

    @Neutral observer

    I don’t deny that people have good experiences in AOL courses, and it can indeed be uplifting, especially for people who have not been exposed to spirituality.

    However, India is a land of spirituality, which has been fortunate to have many masters. Being a faculty member, you probably understand peer review. Laymen are not in a position to judge an expert, hence the peer review process.

    Anyway,this is about the big picture. Historically, brahmins in India have been custodians of spiritual knowledge, and they have used this to gain power and influence. The essential stuff is mixed with a lot of non-essential stuff – and that is used to bind and control people. Guru worship, elevation of guru to godhead, blind following of guru are some of the practices. Whether you realize it or not, AOL’s (and it’s predecessor the TM movement) is to gain power and control the world. This has already happened in India, where AOL has deep ties with right wing BJP and RSS. RS, and AOL people seriously believe that since they have knowledge, their control of power is good for the world.

    Many centuries ago, a man named kabir, challenged the brahmanical orthodoxy, by giving knowledge to the common man in the form of simple dohas. “Enlightenment” is not a privilege of the educated, or the rich – it is very simple, and for everyone. What Kabir had was real commitment to uplifting of the masses to a higher state of consciousness. What RS has, is commitment to a orthodox vedic system, to make everyone a “hindu”, and wield power. People can be “enlightened” without being hindu – religion is only a banana skin, and in AOL it is used as a tool of control. While RS says this – emphasis on AOL is on the non-essential hindu stuff – rather than pure advaita philosophy. Such control is repressive and goes against the philosophy of advaita – but since there is no accountability inside AOL truth is mixed with bullshit.

    Once you are out of AOL you see these things more clearly.

  39. Abhilash Shastry permalink
    July 3, 2010 11:14 am

    ” HHSSRS is not depending on anyone to make his ends meet. He is providing some sort of education to the world and he has every right to charge for it. That is the reason why i linked AoL being free to education being free. ”

    Fair enough.

    There are lot of coaching institutes in India for engineering/medical entrance tests. They also charge lot of money for their courses and no one complains. Why? Because, they don’t claim that they are some kind of messiah to save the world or doing some charity that requires more money and more money and more money. They are in an honest business: I teach, you pay. No strings attached. They also do not put their claim on Nobel Peace Prize for the task of giving tuitions for a price. There is a famous Bansal coaching class in Kota that prepares students for entrance to IITs. If you say that AoL = Bansal Coaching Class and HHSSRS = Mr. Bansal, I have no issues with that except that Mr. Bansal is probably more forthright about his intentions.

    • @goneagain, in above post permalink
      July 3, 2010 2:24 pm

      Gone again,

      You said:

      “Why don’t you explain where the money is going and how SS relatives diverting all the funds to their companies and personal development. Apparent none of you ever provided (using various names but style looks like one or two individual) anything to prove that. Apparently this tactics didn’t work for Nithy, and it wont work for you guys either. You guys are just pushing more and more people to come out and talk about their bad experiences. ”

      I don’t have a clue who anyone on this site is, and don’t care, really. I am ex-AOL. What proof does any intelligent person need to know how HHSSRS’s relatives have built their companies and gained their wealth? Ask anyone who knows the family in Bangalore city and they will tell you that Narasimha, HHSSRS’s brother in law had a small job and was low middle class up to 1991 when he quite it and went full time with SSRS. They have no other source of income except the organization of AOL. Every company in their name and all their money has come from classes and ashrams collections. Sumeru was built on the donations of unsuspecting ‘charity’ donors. Expensive educations and travel have been paid for by the same donations, as no one in that family has any other source of money except HHSSRS and AOL. It’s not hard to find out. It’s also not surprising that nobody does anything about it because all the authorities’ fingers (so far) are in the pie, enjoying the sweet taste of ill-gotten gains.

      HHSSRS’s father was poor, very poor. He did not make a fortune on anything whatsoever, but made a small living in the tire business, then did a chit scheme, which produced a nice, modest home for them and a little cash (other peoples’ cash). After that it was ashram, ashram, ashram, beginning in the late 80s. All this is easy to know about. No proof needs be given. It is known by the police, ministers, all living in Bangalore who know the family, went to school with HHSSRS. Ask around, and you’ll find out. It’s no mystery.

      This family simply lives on the ‘charitable donations’ of unsuspecting fools like us.

      I’m out, and I’m glad.

      • Sincere Seeker permalink
        July 4, 2010 4:45 am

        This is a very good post. I hope this gets published in a newspaper.

        I know the inside story of Sumeru Solutions. That business is run by SSRS bro-in-law Narsimhan, est. for his son Ajay, didn’t turn out that way. However Arvind Exports is definitely a money laundrying scheme and the proof is public, nothing needs to be provided unless you want to see receipts. A lot of people have left Sumeru Solutions here in Bangalore because they found out where the funds were going – to Narsimhan family and ashram (VVM) fund of course. They say it was established to fund AoL service projects but it a business front to the AoL (which is illegal). Also, you may join thinking you will be working for a company which social entrepreneurship and serve your Guru but you are actually a slave of and working for Mr. Narsimhan. He is such a control freak, arrogant, angry, cunning and shrewd. He even gave Bhanu didi a hard time in the early years.

        I just want to make the point that whether it’s AoL, any of the Sumeru or Sri Sri enterprises all of them are family run enterprises. The best part is that they don’t think there is anything wrong with it. SSRS probably wants his family to control the finances because he trusts them the most. He probably doesn’t think it is illegal or immoral, he runs it like a traditional family run business. And he comes from an orthodox Tamil Brahmin family. However if money is getting into their bank accounts whether through AoL, Sumeru or people’s donations is illegal.

        I don’t know how Ajay (SSRS nephew) US education and other assets got paid for. The person here suggests someone donated the money to Ajay for his education, quite possible, otherwise it would have come through donations made to AoL. I also know that Ajay has several assets in US like 2 homes in DC worth $300K and $700K and where else or what else I don’t know.
        The family in India are listed as the beneficiaries on the assets of AoL – again because they are on the board and SSRS probably only trusts them with it. Not knowing how a true non-profit, NGO, Trust should run – definitely not like a family business.

        So for proof maybe I can print who the board members are on the several of the Sumeru, Sri Sri enterprises, Arvind Exports and the VVM Trust board (board members if you know are the true owners, operate bank accounts, decision makers), and the properties some of which are registered in Bhanu didi’s name. Would that be proof to you? Do you also want to see checks written by Mr. Narsimhan and Bhanu didi withdrawing money from VVM and Sumeru accounts to fund other companies, assets, to siphon money? Those no one can get unless the Indian Income Tax dept. does a “raid” and seal all the accounts and assets. However; most of the money siphoned out is by cash, as is the case in the rest of India. It is called black money, because it’s never reported to income tax dept. The incoming money is never declared, so where it goes is also is not tracked. Some of this also happens in other countries, but to a much smaller extend.
        With regards to control, as much money as possible is sent to India where SSRS and family have full control.
        What proof do you need? Let me know.

    • mojo permalink
      July 3, 2010 3:43 pm

      Right on , Abhilash. Also, Mr. Bansal will not ask for a percentage of earnings from the graduates of his school. Unlike AoL. Student pays to go through the entire curriculum ( which includes various phases of TTC ) to become a teacher, and then gets to keep only 10% of earnings from courses that she/ he conducts. That is a SERIOUSLY bad and questionable business ethic. Totally satanic. If AoL wants 90% of teachers earnings, then they should impart TTC knowledge for free. THEN they have a legal/ moral right over 90% earnings. Not otherwise.

      • Anon permalink
        July 4, 2010 3:05 am

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        The messiah part is not said by Sri Sri by his devotees! people always tend to make someone a messiah!

        Give some credit to what AoL has done from a goodness standpoint. It is that simple. if you dont like the spirituality part, ignore it.

  40. Former AOL Patient permalink
    July 3, 2010 2:09 pm

    You know in AOL, we used to have the habit of thanking people who introduced us to the ‘path’. I used to do that whole heartedly with gratitude. I was even doing this after 12 years into AOL.

    For many years I served several Swamis, Rishis and women teachers. I know many of them very closely. They all know me very well too as a sincere devotee. For a ‘sincere knowledge seeker’ a Swami or Rishi was the ultimate exemplar of a devotee (sadly, there are no titles for women in AOL). But the reality was something else. The highest thing to be achieved in AOL was to become a Trustee.

    I was in blissful ignorance about the organization, just focusing on seva, satsang, sadhana, etc. The first time I was hit with a brick in the head was about five years back. I saw right in front of me, people responsible for a particular trust openly discuss how to fudge the numbers and hide things from the auditor. The scale of what they were doing was big. From their discussion, I also came to know that not only SSRS was fully aware of these, he has instructed that it was OK to do so as it was for a good cause. The meeting went on for a while and I vividly remember how I felt during that meeting – disbelief, confusion, self-doubt, betrayal. The few other inner-circle volunteers for this trust who were in that meeting all distanced themselves from these trustees (and even AOL) by giving various excuses. But I stayed and tried to ignore these and just focus on self-knowledge.

    From then on, I started observing closely and after many years I am fully convinced that AOL is front-end name for a group of fraudulent NGOs. My lawyer tells me that what they are doing amounts to large-scale organized fraud according to the laws of several countries. The most important ‘knowledge point’ that AOL practices is Fake It Till You Make It. This cancer has been introduced into many activities by SSRS himself.

    Then I saw the way APEX bodies were given collection targets during the AOL 25 year silver jubilee. How good-intentioned volunteers were working hard to sell every inch of space for advertisers in the many local events during the 25 year.

    The inner-circle of so called Swamis and Rishis openly talk about the various trusts as a profitable trust or a loss making trust. The trust established for monetizing Poojas is by the way one among the many profitable trusts – Navratri alone is conducted in more than 26 locations using a franchisee model. Cities covered as part of this are added or dropped depending on their profitability. The local APEX body suckers are told, Ashram will not send Swamis for Navaratri to some cities as the volunteers did not do a good job of organizing last time – which means that the profits were not as expected. I have also had the misfortune of having first hand listened to conversations between Swamis like “how was the collection in your city?”.

    The internal collection target that has been set for the SS University in Orissa is a staggering Rupees 5000 crores – more than one billion dollars. They are already in touch with people who specialize in lobbying with governments for funds. How much does it take to run Stanford, Harvard and CMU put together?

    I could tell you several dozen personal experiences like this. But enough of this shit. It is repulsive to recollect these.

    Having come across one after another of these damn experiences over years, I was thoroughly disgusted, totally drained out. I had no where to go. No one to look up to. I was only blaming myself for having spent so long in this organization. I was disgusted with myself that I took so long to see through their fraud. I had lost confidence in my abilities.

    Fortunately for me, other things happened in my life that started helping me to recover from AOL. It took a long time, but I now lead a simple and contented life without AOL. I don’t even remotely feel like doing Sadhana. I am allergic to Bhajans, especially AOL ones. Those are just two of the many slow poisoning drugs that keep trapped people in AOL. But I have not lost my wonder at the mysteries of the world. I look up at the stars in the skies and wonder who we are. I wonder at the innumerable body and mind functions that happen within us and wonder how beautiful it is that they happen the way they do. That’s how I was before AOL!

    But what worries me is the number of people still trapped in AOL trance. Many of my close friends and some family members are there. Many of them got introduced to this shit through me. Now I no longer recommend AOL to anyone. In fact, I go out of my way to protect people I know from falling into this sewage.

    I care a damn about whether AOL’s fraud gets exposed or not. All I care is for a bunch of people who I unwittingly brought into this.

    To go back to what I started writing… Sometime back a person who I brought to AOL called and thanked me. She told with much gratefulness that she is an AOL teacher now. I felt deeply guilty – like I had committed some terrible crime – and sincerely apologized for having introduced her to AOL. Then I called the person who introduced me to AOL and told what I did. Now I only have sympathy for this sincere person, not gratitude.

    To AOL inner circle people:
    Do you recollect how SSRS used to say that a scam is about to be deliberately engineered by the divine in order to test the strengths of sincere devotees? And that many people will go away from the path. And only the most devoted would remain. I used to sincerely believe this crap and used to pray that I should be one of those whose faith should remain unshaken, no matter what. Now I laugh at my foolishness!

    • Peaceful Warrior permalink
      July 3, 2010 7:45 pm

      I think we can all understand what we went through. If it is any consolation, getting out of AOL exposed me to real spirituality – not fake like AOL.

      Whistleblower, this post deserves to be on the front page as a separate blog entry. I hope everyone reads this and learns 🙂

    • Sincere Seeker permalink
      July 4, 2010 4:59 am

      Dear Former AoL Patient,

      I would really appreciate it you could contact me.
      I too have several very close friends and family members in AOL and many millions who have given money and their entire lives to AoL.
      Please contact me through the blog owner.

      I would like to share something with you offline. Thanks!

      Attn: Sincere Seeker

    • Former AOL Patient permalink
      July 4, 2010 7:07 am

      Peaceful Warrior, Whistleblower, if useful, feel free to use the post in the front page. Even if it helps one person to come out of AOL, it will help me wash my guilt of bringing many into AOL spiritual dungeon.

      Thanks Sincere Seeker for your concern and support. Please don’t mistake me, but I really don’t feel like getting in touch with any AOL or ex-AOL person. The reason I even wrote this was for a few of my friends and family members who are still in AOL. They know I wrote this and they will definitely read it too. Right now, the only thing that matters to me is getting these people out of AOL.

      My thanks to people who created this blog. You have a done a genuine world of good! Bless you!

  41. coward permalink
    July 3, 2010 5:55 pm

    When educated fools can be trapped by some ponga pundits , snake charmers , astrologers, how they can ever see any stupidity in these false pompous gurus. They can never teach spirituality cause they’re ignorant themselves.

  42. Smiling Monkey permalink
    July 3, 2010 6:04 pm

    Did anyone notice that while a lot of people who are disgruntled with or critical of AOL have been posting their comments in here for weeks and months, a few people who are followers of SSRS start making a lot of posts in the last two three days and start accusing everyone commenting contrary to their views of being the same person.

    Not that I’ve anything against the pro-AOL commentators, but why accuse the people you are arguing with to be fake and crooked and ‘garbage’? Why not just counter their points and leave it at that?

    Also, I think, this is an excellent website to get definitive knowledge about cult behavior and psychology, although it might be a bit time consuming read.

    There are 100 characteristics of a common cult, given, in here. I’d love it if Whistleblower, Skywalker or anyone could actually go through the link and start a series of articles comparing the characteristics listed and how AOL fares on each of them. I’ll also request the AOL devotees to go through it and tell us their views on how AOL fares on this test.

    My personal view is that AOL is quite clearly a cult. May be not malignant yet or not proven to be malignant yet. But, the dangerous traits that it shares with so many other cults don’t bode well for the future of the organization.

  43. Anonymous permalink
    July 4, 2010 12:22 am

    Unrelated to the blog post – but you may find this amusing. Haven’t we seen these all 😉

    10 common STD’s (spiritually transmitted diseases)

  44. Abhilash Shastry permalink
    July 4, 2010 4:50 am

    “The local APEX body suckers are told, Ashram will not send Swamis for Navaratri to some cities as the volunteers did not do a good job of organizing last time – which means that the profits were not as expected.”

    Today AoL has a big PR machine comparable to any successful corporation and usually it is not very difficult for them to pull crowds. However, I have seen those days when it was not a big name and how we all struggled to bring our friends and friends of friends and relatives for any event where SSRS was to be present. I remember in sometime in 1997 there was a maha-satsang in Ahmedabad. In those days, such public events used to be free. (Today most of them are charged). Gujarat is a deeply religious state and organizers in Ahmedabad had done a really good job. About 10000 people had turned up for the event. We were called from Mumbai to learn from Ahmedabad event as next maha satsang was planned in Mumbai. I remember in Ahmedabad, someone had showed SSRS an article in “Times of India” about this event and he was thrilled to see his name in the newspaper. Oldtimers will agree that despite AoL’s claim of being in “service” for 30 years, it was practically in late 90s that the organization really took off.

    We from Mumbai AoL were delirious with the responsibility of organizing next maha satsang in Mumbai. SSRS had promised 30 min private session with all those who volunteered for maha satsang. For small fries like me it was a dream come true! 30 minutes private session with God!! We could kill for such opportunity. Unfortunately for us, Mumbai maha satsang was a flop. Only 800 people had come for the event. As I said earlier that despite AoL’s tall claims of “30 years”, its business grew only in late 90s. Even in 1997, not many people in Mumbai had heard of SSRS and thus the event came as a cropper. It was at that time when I first saw the human frailties of SSRS character. Instead of appreciating the volunteers for their unpaid hard work, he chided them and humiliated them for the failure of the event. He compared us to Ahmedabad volunteers and made us feel like crap for our failure to pull crowd. For months I felt depressed and guilty for letting down my master.

  45. Answering Financial Concerns from Art of Living-Fair Unbiased View permalink
    July 4, 2010 6:07 am

    (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
    I am hoping that this is a sane post which can be published to turn this into a healthy debate rather than a backlash. Also just to be clear, the Art of Living Foundation does not endorse any of the view posted by the so call pro-AOL people here (There seem to be people posing and posting as DSN teachers in the pro side which is totally not true). There also seem to be many people posing as teachers in the con side and we do not wish to comment on that. I am not an official spokesperson of the foundation here but I have gathered enough information from people to make a meaningful statement.

    1. Financials: various countries have various financial systems but the bottomline of these discussions seem to be centered around India. There is an audit trail for all financial transactions and Art of Living foundation, VVMVP and other social organizations gets it auditing done by multiple multi-national auditing firms. All information can be furnished upon a proper written request with a clear intent to the foundation. There are countries like the United States where this information needs to be published per law on a public forum and the financials are available in public forums in those countries too.

    2. Art of Living has a social angle and a business angle too. Art of Living does encourage formation of corporations (like sumeru), which maintain their own separate accounting books. Most of these corporations get money from seed investors (like myself) and not from any social projects. Again the accounting books of all these firms are audited by multiple auditing firms and information can be provided upon request. In fact many of the corporations fund service projects from their profits

    Sri Sri was voted as the 5th Most powerful Person in India by Forbes Magazine which is a business magazine. Sri sri’s techniques serves as valuable tools for businesses and is constantly invited by many business houses across the world. It is no surprise that Sri Sri has attempted to bridge the gap between business and spirituality-He doesnt see the two as contradictory. In fact Sri Sri chairs a Business and Sprituality conference in the EU Parliament on a fairly regular basis.

    3. The Art of Living Foundation is open to fair unbiased criticism of its founder but will not tolerate any life threatening statements or actions, extortion attempts and or misuse of copyrighted material from the foundation. While blogs can serve as an expression of free speech, they cannot be used in a manner not compliant with local and international law.

    Please note that any backlash based discussion cannot and will not be productive. A fair unbiased discussion is meritworthy. Personal attacks or insults will not be responded to.

    Thank You.

  46. Answering Financial Concerns from Art of Living-Fair Unbiased View permalink
    July 4, 2010 8:40 am

    (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
    Just wished to make one more comment on the Nobel Peace Prize propaganda. In 2005 and 2006, there were enough hints that Sri Sri was in the final short-list and as an organization (which is usually used to chaos), needed to get organized in its communications strategy. Many organizations and individuals do the same especially if they believe they have a fair shot at the prize in a given year. Of course the whole process is secretive, so no one really knows who will win.

      • Inc. permalink
        July 4, 2010 9:21 am

        (aka KLIM-Student wrote:)
        Let us give some credit to AoL for taking a bold step on this. They have gone ahead and complained to the police and in one way this opens them up for any investigation as well. In case something is wrong, they will be found wrong but if their stance is right, they will get exonerated.

        Don Sridhar is well known for many extortion attempts and has many criminal cases against him.

  47. Abhilash Shastry permalink
    July 4, 2010 11:36 am


    “The messiah part is not said by Sri Sri but by his devotees! people always tend to make someone a messiah!”

    Oh, really? Can you please tell me who gave him the title of “Sri Sri”? Was it a devotee or his own overblown ego? If he did not want to pose as messiah, why didn’t he satisfy himself with one “Sri”.

    ‘Messiah’ posture has been assumed by SSRS himself. Devotees are only massaging his ego.

  48. AOL ex junky permalink
    July 4, 2010 4:43 pm

    For the LA upanishads at the new LA center purchased for over 5mil dollars.

    AOL charged $1100 from 1100 people and it was tax write off for the participants
    Is this legal?

    Isn’t the US govt and IRS screwed in the process with the AOL NGO status?

    Any expert comments

  49. Svetana permalink
    August 6, 2010 3:37 am

    anonymus, August 5, 2010

    You said:“There are negetivities but all these negetivity should not touch us or our mind. And mind is cured though AOL practice , that is for sure (every one agrees who does this practice regularly, or attended 4 day part 2 course). And so I praise and worship these practices and sri sri result of who we have this option/way/faith/love/didication. So stay away from this bad financial practices and stick with this beautiful AOL practices.”

    Judging by your message, your mind is totally cured through AOL. That’s why, probably, you recommend to “stay away from this bad financial practices and stick with this beautiful AOL practices”. It sounds like learning how to be honest from a crook. Cured mind indeed.. By the way, how many AOL courses does it take to have this kind of twisted logic?

  50. disgruntled Sri Sri devotee permalink
    August 16, 2010 6:47 pm

    This is an open question.

    Where does the AOL money go?

    If it goes to seva projects, can somebody tell me which ones and how much?

    Everything else is BS, come to the point, talk finances.

    AOL ppl, pls enlighten me with this.

  51. August 25, 2010 6:31 am

    Hello Dear Ones,

    I am sending blessings to all disgruntled devotees and souls from our Guruji H.H. Sri Sri Ravi Shankarji.

    Stop wasting your time and if you really want to do something good then please start some service project yourself, whether an orphanage or helping old people, drug addicts, helping disadvantaged and poor people in third world countries.

    If you have guts and have just a little courage then come out in the open and talk face to face with Guruji.

    Swamiji has replied to all your questions as per info below.

    From: Swami Sadyojathah
    First of all let me introduce myself. My name is Swami Sadyojathah and I have been with Guruji and the Art of Living for more than 18 years. Even though I was born into a royal family in Kerala, I became a strong communist during my school/college days. In our communist study classes we were taught that spirituality is a hoax and we should go to a spiritual master ONLY to expose them! It was such a coincidence then that I first heard about Guruji from a friend whom I adored because he was also inclined towards communist ideology. When i actually went to meet Guruji it was only to check him out more for being a fraud than anything else! Because of my communist background and my education in Mechanical Engineering, I was not inclined to believe anything so easily. Everything had to appeal my intellect and I would react strongly if i saw even an iota of injustice or irregularity. The very fact that I have been with Guruji and the Art of Living for more than 18 years is testimony to the fact that our organization is transparent and clean for i have not lost that sense of justice and standing up for the truth.

    Today, the Art of Living has 10,000 teachers worldwide. The motivation and intention of the 5-6 people who are behind these unsavoury blogs is questionable to say the least. If they wished to save the world, why don’t they work against drug trafficking or poverty or do any other service project instead of trying to stab the hope and solace that millions of people have found in their lives through Guruji? None of these bloggers can touch their hearts and say that what they have written is true.

    If you are really sincere, then you should have no fear of revealing your identity. Why don’t you come out in open and confront Guruji? Guruji gives Darshan to everyone and meets anyone who comes to him. Just ”blowing the whistle” without revealing your identity is an act of cowardice. And this is nothing short of terrorism by pen. When these negative blogs against Guruji and Art of Living were brought to Guruji’s notice, he just smiled and said, “it is good to have bad press. This will filter the weak and we can identify our strong pillars.” Millions of strong pillars of AOL worldwide just laugh at these negative blogs and ignore them. But, we feel that it is our responsibility to present the facts and expose this bunch of negative bloggers.

    Who are these negative bloggers?

    The first one is a lady called ***** from ****. She is bipolar and comes from a troubled background. To get sympathy from people she used to tell everyone that her father used to throw shoes at her and her mother used to throw hot tea cups at her. Later on we found that this was just a figment of her imagination and that her parents are from very respectable families. Because of her unstable nature but coming across as perfectly rational she used to take advantage of people. When her whole family rejected her, she was given shelter. She was prone to sudden bouts of violence and make a spectacle of herself screaming and running around even in places such as the airport! This became less frequent when she was regular in her spiritual practices. When she stopped doing the practices the erratic behaviour would erupt once again. Out of compassion, her Part 1 teacher Janael Mcqueen pleaded to Guruji to allow her to do TTC because she felt that if this lady was empowered and made a teacher she would be fine. No doubt that she was a good teacher, but, very soon people discovered her strange behaviour. She demanded that the people of **** respect her. Guruji said, “I won’t tell anyone to respect you, you have to earn your own respect.” Her own students pleaded to Guruji not to send her to **** anymore which was a big blow for her. Her 3 ex-boy friends like Mr Ignacious , Mr Jonnathan Tang etc. can speak volumes about the trouble that they have undergone in their lives because of her. Janael Mcqueen and reputed journalist Beatriz can testify about her state of mind. As also the Art of Living *** Board, about her misconduct.

    Ignacio Escribano (

    Beatriz Goyoaga ( +54114530407

    Souza, Alexandre” , (AOL ****) – +551191422502

    Oscar Lopez , – +56998858832

    Janael Mcqueen –
    When senior devotees complained about *****’s tantrums and abnormal behaviour to Guruji and asked him why they should associate with pathological liars like her, he used to tell them “we stick to our first course point of Art of Living which is: accept people as they are! Nobody wants her, her parents don’t want her, so if we also send her away, where will she go?” Around Guruji there is always lightness and humour. Never is there malicious bad-mouthing. This lady used to get irritated by joy and humour. Only someone who is mentally sick can construe all that as being malicious. Once when someone started praising her about her command of languages (she was conversant in Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese and English), Guruji had hinted, “a ladder which takes you up can bring one down also.” This is what she twisted and mentioned in the blog. She demanded 3000 usd per month failing which she would write a negative blog and she fulfilled her threat. Even after she started these negative blogs against Guruji and the organization, she still goes to Art of Living people and takes their help!

    Another person who has joined this negative blog group is a young girl from ****. Many people want proximity to Guruji and upon not getting what they want lash out at Guruji or the organization.. He tells them to take a project and sincerely work towards it instead of hanging around him. This girl from **** even rose to work in the secretariat. AOL is such an open organization that anyone who is in the organization for one year and have done the necessary courses can become even a teacher.

    Another blogger, a person from **** who left AOL because his parents’ suffered from Parkinson disease and was hoping that Guruji would cure them. When they did not cure fully after coming to the AoL Silver Jubilee celebrations he left.

    Another gentleman from **** was troubled because he could not come to terms with the adulations that Guruji was getting. He started saying that Art of Living should not worship Hindu Gods/Goddesses. He himself was quite depressed and though he became a teacher and was well aware of customs in the Ashram which adhere to ancient Indian spiritual traditions such as Vedic chanting, the singing of bhajans and the Indian custom of bowing down and touching the feet of the Master he used to vehemently object to them. He repeatedly asked Guruji to stop all these practices. Guruji however made it clear that these customs were part of Indian culture. Guruji himslef does not desire for devotees to touch his feet, but that is what devotees wish to do. Althought Guruji explained all this to him very politely He did not take kindly to it.

    Two Indian sisters are also part of this negative blog group. They did not have any genuine interest towards knowledge or service. They used to over exhibit their devotion to the Master, constantly vying for his attention. Their own brother, sister in law and other family members are all still actively involved in AOL. One of these sisters wanted to become an Advanced course teacher but was not made one. That factor combined with the not getting the kind of attention they wanted made both sisters leave AOL and take to writing these negative blogs.

    Another group which has joined in the fray is an extremist Jihadi group. When it was brought to Guruji’s notice, he said, “welcome them, let them come and see everything, we have nothing to hide, perhaps they will get transformed.” It has happened many a time that agnostics/atheists who come to disprove Guruji have landed up becoming devotees.

    Guruji deals with mentally challenged people as compassionately as possible.

    There are only two occasions when Guruji avoids answering questions. First is when someone insists Guruji to support abortion and second is when people are diagnosed with serious illnesses but want to go against medical advice. There are a few such people who refuse to take medical help and we call them Blue Stars. Not meant derogatorily. Only Guruji can handle them with patience. We have seen Guruji doing all out to help people irrespective of their attitude or behaviour.

    We don’t need to refute that the allegations made by these people are not true. But, since someone has taken the pains to compile the so called allegations, I am decided to take the trouble of making the facts to a sincere seeker who may wander on this site, loud and clear.

    1. Anyone who has been associated with the Art of Living knows that nobody is ever compelled by anyone to do seva nor is put on ‘a guilt trip’by Guruji as has been suggested.

    2. Only those who are totally ignorant about Ayurveda can say that Sri Sri Ayurveda formulas are copied from Maharishi Ayurveda . None of our people have visited Maharishi Ayurveda in the first place. Most of our products are based on the ancient Ayurvedic texts of Charaka (Ashtanga Hridaya etc) and we don’t need to copy the formula from anyone else. Anyone who has visited our Ayurveda factory can vouch for the high standards of cleanliness and hygiene that are maintained in the manufacturing process. The allegation that our products are substandard is utter nonsense.

    Mr Narasimhan is not at all involved in the purchase of any materials in the ayurveda factory. Let anyone be able to produce one bill to prove that there is someone taking commission in the purchase of raw materials.

    First they accuse AoL of financial irregularities. When all accounts are in ‘’webstar’’, now they are talking about kickback from suppliers!. Those making these allegations have absolutely no proof of financial irregularities and therefore it is therefore even more surprising that they do it with such ease.

    3. The preposterous suggestion that we smuggle medicines to countries and sell them is again wholly untrue. Proper clearances and licenses from each country are procured and all those who have bought our products know that they are sold at market prices.

    4. Anyone who has even a little knowledge about AoL know that the AoL European headquarters are in Geneva, Switzerland. We don’t need to transfer money to any country to evade tax because our organization is exempted from tax in all these countries.

    5. It is a joke that the contents of AoL are copied from other institutions.

    6. And the same goes for Sahaj Samadhi meditation.

    7. Oury Engolz was our guest and we invited him a few times. We invite them, but we don’t need to steal their ideas from them

    8. I personally have been involved in the trauma relief and rehabilitation projects in the tsunami hit areas of Tamilnadu and Sri Lanka. Anyone who has been involved in any of the service projects of AoL will know that these allegations are false. The very fact that these negative bloggers have made factual errors about our projects in itself shows that they are all false. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar Vidya Mandir (SSRVM) schools are not charitable schools and no where we have claimed that. It is Sri Sri Vidya Mandirs and Bal Mandirs across the country which are free schools.

    The charity we do is supported by the fees we charge for the courses. Is it fair to say that just because someone is Guruji’s nephew, he should not get proper education?

    9. Those who have visited our rural school where more than 2000 first generation children from neighbouring villages are studying, would have seen for themselves how the money is spent. Children get uniforms, mid-day meals, transportation etc. free of cost.

    10. Vyakti Vikas Kendra India (VVKI) accounts are audited and anyone can verify them. We save only 25% from the course fees that is collected.

    11. In fact our experience is that not all full-time teachers perform very well.

    12. Guruji directly corrects people when they are wrong . He never humiliates anyone. The skill and knack with which he makes people realize their mistake without making them feel guilty is really amazing. All senior teachers would stand testimony to this.

    13. There are 10,000 teachers worldwide in AOL. Except a handful of teachers who have left AOL, all the teachers will vouch for the organization and how it has benefitted them.

    14. You can malign any organization on two accounts. One is sex, the other is money. AOL has stood the test of these accusattions. It is easy to label anyone as immoral and create doubts. If there is anyone who is the victim of a sex scandal, let them give evidence or face trial in the court for defamation.

    15. Same as above.

    16. AGNI is a yellow journalism magazine which writes ONLY false stories about anyone and everyone. It is run by a person who is an underworld don. He has four cases of contempt of court and a dozen criminal charges pending against him. If anyone is quoting this magazine to accuse AoL or its teachers, then it is a very clear indication that they are also of the same calibre. The man in question, Sridhar (AGNI) demanded 42 crores rupees and 2 crores every year from AOL failing which he threatened to malign the organization. When the organization refused to entertain him he accused AoL of grabbing land from a Dalit which the world now knows to be an absolute hoax. The land was bought from a Brahmin at market price. Sridhar then came up with another land issue but failed in that also. However that has not deterred him for he is still desperately trying to malign the organization.

    The firing of the bullet in the ashram was extremely dubious and no satisfactory explanation was offered by the cops. In every field there are a few disgruntled individuals whose motivations may not be above board. Guruji doesn’t not worry if anyone tries to malign him or his organization. Accolades and brickbats are the same for him, they do not affect him.

    17. We started this 21 days TTC format to lessen the burden on people coming from far off places like Bihar, UP and North East.

    18. Anyone who has travelled with Guruji even once in their life know how much he takes care of them. He makes sure that they have have had food (many a time he himself serves food to everyone) and a place to stay. We receive emails or people ask Guruji directly whether they can travel with him abroad. It does not mean that AOL has to pay for their flights. We only pay the fares of full-time teachers who travel to conduct the courses.

    It seems that the lady who has written this has a deep psychological imbalance.

    19. Guruji goes through nearly 600 emails/letters everyday. Any email /letter which is marked ‘confidential’, he looks into it himself. But, those mails which are not in English/Kannada/Hindi, he asks translators to read, confidentially. This lady could read 2-3 languages like Portuguese. Since they were not many who can read Portuguese , she was asked to read those mails. The way she has twisted this shows the disturbed way in which her mind works.

    20. We don’t compel anyone to give donations. Those who donate do so out of gratitude, or their commitment to be part of service projects or whatever reason but totally of their own volition.

    21. This Swamis and Rishis sit and discuss the amount of money collected for Poojas is baseless and ludicrous. I myself have conducted many Navaratri poojas and we leave it totally to the local organizers to conduct the entire event.

    22. Guruji discourages anyone to become full time teachers. This lady did not wanted to take up a job. She only wanted to become full time teacher. She claimed that she was sick and was given three months free treatment in the German ashram even though doctors found that she was perfectly okay to work. As per Guruji’s instruction, we were giving her per month. Without doing anything she was being paid every month. Her best friend tried to put sense into her head. But she was constantly bickering and negative. Even after she left AOL and started writing these negative blogs, it is an AOL devotee who is still helping her to date!

    23. Guruji has never predicted anything about Bush nor on Obama. Have these predictions appeared in the media? Where has this lady got these ideas if she is not in AOL anylonger? Once again fabrications of her own mind.

    24. This soap story itself is enough to expose how much one can stoop in making allegations. It is rubbish to say that Guruji demanded to stay in a 5 star hotel! While he was in **** for the third time, he mentioned to the organizers that the hotel where he had stayed twice before had bigger meeting room to accommodate more people. 200-300 devotees could sit in that bigger meeting room whilst in the current meeting room not even 50 people were able to sit. The rest of the people were hovering in the lobby and Guruji was concerned as he did not want to inconvenience other guests staying in the hotel. Once again the lady has potrayed an a malicious version of what actually took place.

    Guruji was visiting **** for just a day and this lady had ordered worth of cosmetics(soaps, shampoos etc). The moment Guruji saw that, he asked her ‘’why did you buy so much and that too when I don’t need to use them at all?’’. Guruji carries his own toiletries wherever he goes. Immediately she replied that she got it sponsored by devotees. There were half a dozen shampoo bottles and soaps. Guruji asked her ‘’why do you have to spend so much money whether it is devotee’s money or that of the organization’s?’’. Everyone present there knew that this lady got all those soaps and shampoos and other cosmetics in Guruji’s name so that she can have all that!

    Any sensible person will just laugh at the allegation that Guruji yelled for a soap!!! This lady has a habit of imagining that people are yelling at her. People who have interacted with her know that she yells herself! This lady had shouted at a whole group even at **** airport as they waited to receive Guruji. All teachers and devotees who were present were witness as to how Guruji handled the situation with utmost patience.

    Even when someone was talking to her in a normal tone, she would say, ‘”don’t yell at me.” And every now and then she would say, “I am quitting.”

    Guruji has stayed in tents, he has stayed in villages. He always adjusts to his surroundings with utmost ease and is always considerate about not inconveniencing his hosts wherever he might be. Anyone in a right frame of mind cannot accuseGuruji of yelling for soap!

    I still remember an occasion when Guruji himself started cleaning the place where he had to stay! This was in Japan and his room had lot of dust, windows unclean etc. He took a cloth and started cleaning without any complaining.

    25. AoL are not a herd of sheep! We are a heterogeneous group, of various backgrounds and from every walk of life right from prisoners to people who hold high posts in different fields. Only Guruji can bring such diverse group together. Guruji never shies away from taking responsibility for the misdeeds of people –not just the organization, but just about everybody. In our Teachers Refresher Meet( TRM) every teacher gets a chance to express their view point or difference of opinion if any, but, at the end everyone goes back charged with enthusiasm, to teach more courses and take up big service projects. This has been happening every single time.

    26. The hearts that are grateful and mature people always give credit to those whom they love. It is only the disgruntled that find fault in the noblest of people. Whether someone performs or not Guruji gives such care to every person.

    27. This teacher from ***** wanted to stop teaching because of his wife and his career. He had no complaint against Guruji or AOL. Since he is a cook, he wanted to take up the job of a chef and Guruji had told him ‘’if you want to leave, you are welcome’’.

    28. Once again this person is contradicting herself. On the one hand she says that Guruji said that she was free to leave. And on the other hand she says that Guruji cursed her. Anyone who knows Guruji knows that this is absolute nonsense and if anything shows the hatred in her. If anyone meets her for even a single day , they will know the truth. Those who were with Guruji are utterly shocked by the way she has deliberately misinterpreted everything.

    It should be noted that none of these negative blogs/articles are written by close associates of Guruji or by any ashramite. There are hundreds of people who are engineers/doctors/lawyers/MBA s who are at the helm of affairs in AoL and they are not fools who can be deceived. These negative bloggers only prove the old saying that, ‘’no saint or prophet escaped criticism/condemnation’’. On the one hand they talk about the so called inner circle of Guruji and on the other hand claim to have had access to the inner circle! These are the people who blame Guruji for their own failures and shortcomings. And they do so shamelessly and without hesitation. Only a saint can tolerate such a barrage of ill will. It is tough to be a Guru! But Guruji does it with a smile!!!!

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