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World Culture Festival – Not so good for AoL

July 6, 2011

by anonymous

Yeah…It did look and feel extremely cultish….more than ever before. Municipalities and Governments are going broke all over the world….One good thing is that the Berlin City would have been grateful for 2 days of business from AOL.

Hmmmmm….7 years hence, and nothing has really changed. I re-collect they did the exact same thing at CCS 2004 at the BGE Ashram when they opened the doors of the Vishalahshi Mandap open to all and sundry. In the last minute they allowed anybody and everybody to walk in. It was funny to see local village bellies and their families sitting in the workshops/presentations totally lost. While I would like to give anyone the benefit of the doubt, these folks were clearly not the CEO/VP types (not by the fiction of anybody’s imagination or choice). They charged a pretty big fee I remember and I had 3 visiting dignitaries with me who had paid top $ on my invitation and they had come in from around the world. I felt humiliated.

Immediately, Post event, no one could answer me as to how this could happen. (Shhhhh!!!!, Questions are LOW PRANA….don’t you know that ?….Where is your faith ???, Guruji works differently, he cares not for the Organisation, he works to throw lessons your way that, things that are meant for your growth…an yours alone .so you may become complete…….yes thats true a so instead of being a one off joker I can now be a more complete moron).

Hmmmmm…Looking at the Berlin numbers,

If there were only 20-25,000 people.

They claimed that they had 6000 Musicians travel in….lets discount that by 50%….thats 3000

Now for a planned 75,000 event at the very minimum you would have 5% of that as your volunteering crowd, That meant AOL active volunteers that worked for the event and at the event, another 3750, thats 6750 in all.

Now this 6750 would have not paid the entrance fee.

The dignitary list was 804 applying the AOL discount thats 400.

Say unpaid pax about 7000 so far.

Then there is the entourage — Family Bhanu, Family Rajita, All the folks traveling in the entourage, All the Apex body members and their families from 151 countries + …that must have been another 1000 people at least from all over the world.

Thats 8000 unpaid pax thus far.

Lets say that each volunteer got in 1 person free in the last minute thats another 3500 people approx (beacuse now I can invite the neighbour and the milkman, the grocer, and the maid. Thats about 18000 pax now in all, ie those that did not pay. God knows how much of the balance 7000 were corporate invites (all the potential Apex course candidates…..which by now they would have lost).

Thats about 11500 unpaid pax.

The genuine investor/devotee is finally short-changed and shot chained.

Now, if only 14000 odd paid what would have been the collection ??? say about Euro 2,100,000/- at 150 Euro per head. The airfare for 6000 musicians at an avg of Euro 500 a person would have been 3 million Euros….WOW

Clearly, we will never see the statement of accounts made for this event. Too much of it is grey and un recorded. I suspect that would be a clever setup for some huge tax write-offs and some definite cooking of books. If a company like GE is not paying taxes… google this guys……AOL can easily get away as it is even more strangely structured than GE. Look at the timing of this as far as India is concerned, all the big cults in India are under the radar now…everyone is looking at their assets/claims.

AOL should be questioned by their own devotees, JUST so that they can get the 33 YEAR celebration RIGHT the next time …Oh..its in Brazil this time….Yeah maan its the Rio (psssst : Its easier and cheaper to fill the stadium, and Guruji wants to speak in Spanish the next time)

… many tickets were sold ?
…..How much did the event cost (include all hidden direct and indirect expenditure of all the volunteers)
….. How much corporate sponsorship did you get ?
…..What was the stadium rental….?
…..Who (which legal entity) paid for this ?…from where…which bank account ? Was it AOL Germany ?
……If they had so much money, how come they struggle to maintain their own premises ????
…….Why did it have to be a 2 day event ? Was 1 day not enough ?
…….Whose idea was this ?

At the end of the day even an average and well brainwashed volunteer would have seen and felt the following at Berlin

1. The sheer lack of energy and numbers
2. The lack lusture, purposelessness, the endless toiling and exploitation by teachers for many months prior to the event
3. The lies you had to tell to fill the stadium (promising the earth, salvation and enlightenment)
4. The questions…..why did we waste so much resources for such a pathetic event ?…..for what ? What did it achieve ? New stories, yeah new Guru Stories will have to be fabricated….however its getting tougher to make up the ones that people will just buy.

Somewhere within you these questions will burn….and thats a good thing. I am starting to feel and see an exposure happening. Ahaaa…The Emperor wears no clothes.

The failure of this event will start all the blame games and much infighting…which they will all have to live with…or leave with….

As far as he is concerned, everyone is responsible for the failure but HIM…..

And the same goes to all the zombied followers, HIM we gotta keep pure….without that story the very DNA, the very fabric of the AOL story vanishes.

I am sure, he will have heads rolling and energy will be sucked from the blind followers. More and more will leave….hopefully more will now become awake….

Not so good for AOL….but its great for humans, for freedom, for non-exploitation, for life, for truth and finally for Spirituality in its true essence.

  1. Ex Sumeru Programmer permalink
    July 6, 2011 6:28 am

    I think some of your assumptions are a little bit off.

    “They claimed that they had 6000 Musicians travel in….lets discount that by 50%….thats 3000”

    The 2K musicians were not flown free by AOL. I know a few of these amatuer artists who were flown from bangalore and chennai and they paid for their fare from their pockets. Their main motivation in going to the AOL ceremony was the europe sight seeing tour. Teachers like Bawa and Dinesh had created a travel package to get these people pay and come to Berlin. They are visiting austria and switzerland this week as part of the package and living in tents and low end accomodation, eating very basic vegetarian food. This package works out slightly cheaper than other organized tours to europe. AOL has made some money here. Most of these junior artists are least bothered about aol or ravishankar they are there for sight seeing.

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 6, 2011 4:28 pm

      From what I have seen AOL never pays anybody’s airfare but for the 1st families when it is a pleasure trip. It does not matter who paid….at the end of the day its a Volunteer’s / devotee’s resource that is being used …… The question is for WHOSE benefit ????.

      • Ex Sumeru Programmer permalink
        July 6, 2011 4:45 pm

        Yes you are right. AOL knows only income no outcome. This has been my personal experience. They get all their jobs done through seva. I was one such useful idiot for aol year ago.

  2. anon permalink
    July 6, 2011 7:03 am

    Founded in 1981 by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, the Art of Living Foundation is a not-for-profit, educational and humanitarian NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation) engaged in stress-management and service initiatives.

    The above paragraph is copied from official ‘Art of Living’ website. Sorry in advance, if the blog owner(s) is/are taken to court for this copyright violation. The purpose was to know the objective(s) under which the wastage of money on Berlin festival is permitted to a charitable (is that an AOL objective?) organisation. I have made an effort to explain this under each stated objective:

    *Not-for-profit: Yes, the event has not made any profit so holding the even is well within its objective. To make the record straight, the organsiation has made a net loss of USD 9,725,632.19 without counting personal expenses an time value of volunteers.

    *Educational: Yes, the event is an educational event for AOL and SSRS. Now SSRS has learned his lesson and may do better next time.

    *Humanitarian NGO: Yes, to err is human and as this event was full of errors, it can easily be considered humanitarian. It was not supported by any government and well covered as an NGO.

    *Engaged in stress-management: Failed badly. The event has been a big stress to volunteers and inner circle members before the event. However, it can still be covered under this objective as AOL/SSRS are in a lot of stress and the organsiation will need to engage in stress-management post event.

    *Service initiatives: The initiative was to service ever expanding EGO of SSRS, however, due to bad management by volunteers (SSRS cannot be blamed) his EGO has been punctured severely.

    • anonymous permalink
      July 6, 2011 11:59 am

      Art of Living was founded in 1981? Why then, are the documents founding it (in California as Art of Living) filed, on public record, btw, in 1989? You can look them up yourself. AOL was not founded in 1981.

  3. Pankaja permalink
    July 6, 2011 7:07 am

    The best place to have large events is India. For any stupid event there will be thousands of people. While Ravi has suffered losses in Berlin, Jaggi Vasudev is raking in the moolah. He has organized a masssive campagin for his Isha Yoga – Inner Engineering course in Bangalore this week. Right in the home turf of Ravi Ravi. There are thousands expected for the book launch today. There is also a weekend couse which is slightly expensive – Rs 3500 and Rs 10000. If you pay 10k you get to sit close to the sadguru. For 3.5 K you sit a a few hundred feet away with maybe little bit less radiation of his enlightened presence.

    • stupidseeker permalink
      July 6, 2011 8:21 am

      Did you hear pankaja that this very same enlightened being is going to tear down 5,00,000 sq. ft. of the velliangiri biosphere to build a brand new temple complex.? He is asking donations at 2100 Rs./sq.ft and the total cost is going to come to 1,000 million INR. Spirituality at the cost of the biospehre

      • user permalink
        July 6, 2011 7:54 pm

        i wonder what a genuine guru is?….i think that exists only in fairy a perfect love..things that are not possibe in physical world..
        ALL gurus we KNOW of, are money suckers or/and with some kind of psychycic disorder..

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 6, 2011 8:53 am

      From: (about Isha Yoga cult)

      CHARISMATIC PSYCHOPATHS are Devilishly Charming, Attractive, and Liars. They are usually gifted of some talent or another, and they use it to their advantage in manipulating others. They possess an almost Demoniac ability to persuade others out of everything they own, even their lives. Leaders of religious sects or cults, for example, might be psychopaths if they lead their followers to their deaths. This subtype often comes to believe in their own fictions. They are irresistible.

      Sociopaths have always existed in varying form and to various degrees. They have been known by various titles. They have been studied using various techniques, and through the years their ailment has been blamed on various causes. But one thing never varies: all sociopaths share three common characteristics. They are all very egocentric individuals with no empathy for others, and they are incapable of feeling remorse or guilt.

      While the psychopath has likes and dislikes and fondness for the pleasures that human company can bring, analysis shows that he is completely egocentric, valuing others only for their enhancement of his own pleasure or status. While he gives no real love, he is quite capable of inspiring love of sometimes fanatical degree in others.

      He is generally superficially charming and often makes a striking impression as possessed of the noblest of human qualities. He makes friends easily, and is very manipulative, using his ability with words to talk his way out of trouble. Many psychopaths love to be admired and bask in the adulation of others.

      With the lack of love, there is also a lack of empathy. The psychopath is unable to feel sorry for others in unfortunate situations or put himself in another’s place, whether or not they have been harmed by him.

      • anonymous permalink
        July 6, 2011 12:01 pm

        What a great post! This describes Ravi Shankar to a tee! No empathy, having people around only who increase his pleasure/happiness, or further his agenda.

      • Peaceful Warrior permalink
        July 6, 2011 3:14 pm

        Actually too much empathy can be bad too. Any leader needs to have dispassion and focus on the big picture, and not be drawn into people’s misery.
        It is not the lack of empathy people have problem with – it is lack of personal ethics, transparency, and the culture of sychophancy that permeates AOL that is repulsive.

      • Mahy permalink
        August 3, 2011 2:04 am

        There was one genuine guru who is no more. Who was a petty shopkeeper and didnt want anything from anyone except he wanted to share the knowledge he gained from his own experience. Who didnt want to be called a Guru a simple householder, lived in the bylanes of Bombay, not a well read person in scriptures or conventional education, but had profound knowledge of the self and followed Ramana Maharshi as an enlightened being.He was Nisargadatta Maharaj.

    • AOL Mole permalink
      July 7, 2011 11:22 am

      Pankaja just wait Ravi has taken serious note of Jaggi in Bangalore. There will be a big aol event in bangalore soon.

      • stupidseeker permalink
        July 7, 2011 12:41 pm

        Will we soon see HHSSRS “exploding” people, the trademark of Jaggi vasudev ??

  4. Anonymous permalink
    July 7, 2011 12:48 am

    you people are disgusting. how many of you were there in berlin to make a judgement of success or failure of this event? just watching on tekevision is not enough. bec the spirit and enery cannot be captured on tv. it was a successful show and everyone was very happy. all there received blessings.

  5. The Doctor permalink
    July 7, 2011 7:13 am

    How exactly do you measure how successful it was? What were its objectives to begin with?

    We are more concerned about the extravagance of the event, and whether or not Art of Living made or lost money as a result of the event. If the latter, this really doesn’t bode well for a charity at all, since this constitutes a waste of money which should actually have been spent on humanitarian projects, which is what they claim money is spent on.

    Regarding “all there received blessings”, I’m slightly confused by this statement, as in the video posted in this comment, Guruji clearly says:

    “it’s not that you’re going to go to Berlin and you’ll get special blessing will descend on you, nothing of that sort”

    So how were you able to received blessings when Guruji himself said that this wasn’t going to happen, and can you describe these blessings in any detail?

    • Harshal permalink
      July 7, 2011 9:27 am

      “How exactly do you measure how successful it was? What were its objectives to begin with?”

      Why don’t you tell ? Tell them what exactly is good for them and what they should do. Catch the world in the headlight of your justice.

      G said that that there wont be any ‘special’ blessings. He did not say their wont be any blessings.This is how people have to argue with you. This is the level of your debating skills. Are you not ashamed of yourself?

      If the event was successful, it was because all the zombies who attended and worked for it. If it was not successful, it is a decline for AOL, money was wasted etc etc. This is how your math works?

      This blog is getting less entertaining now. We need more stories of how you all were helpless victims , how you had no choice, how you were drawn towards the evil forces of a cult , dramasand tragedies in your in your life etc.

      • Anonymous permalink
        July 7, 2011 11:43 am

        You should be careful if the blog is getting less entertaining for you Harshal.. Good that you started feeling this blog a bit serious 🙂

      • Anonymous permalink
        July 7, 2011 11:45 am

        And why this unnecessary wastage Harshal? Why not organize something that is more worthwhile and meaningful? Why not start a genuine service project so that you can shut the mouth of all terrorists in this blog – like an orphanage or an old age home associated with AOL?

      • The Doctor permalink
        July 7, 2011 7:27 pm

        G said that that there wont be any ‘special’ blessings.

        Hold on just one minute, surely ALL blessings from “G” are special, right? Or are you trying to tell me that he gives two kinds of blessings, special ones and unspecial ones? Or is there some kind of “specialness scale” going on here, from not special at all on one end, to very special on the other?

        If this really is the case, then why doesn’t he give the “special” blessings all the time? And especially why would he withhold giving “special” blessings to all those who took such pains to come all the way to Berlin for this momentous occasion in Art of Living’s history? Those many souls who travelled from places like Australia, Argentina, South Africa, China, and the other 151 countries Art of Living has a presence in? Surely they deserve more than just the unspecial blessings from their beloved Guru?

        Please enlighten me on these things, Harshal, because I genuinely want to know. And, I challenge you to do this without shooting what little you have left of your feet completely off.

  6. anonymus permalink
    July 7, 2011 7:47 am

    I was there! Sri Sri was so boring and so vain. The festival was good, because the people did it. I’m sorry for all those innocent people who do not understand the true objectives of the organization and participated in this farce.

    • Harshal permalink
      July 8, 2011 9:27 am

      “Or are you trying to tell me that he gives two kinds of blessings, special ones and unspecial ones? ”

      I am sorry that old age is catching up with you, so you are not able to understand what I said. Can you show me when and where I said that there are two types of blessings?

      On a slightly unrelated topic….did you get that brain scan yet?

      • The Doctor permalink
        July 8, 2011 9:51 am

        There is an expression which I think is really applies to you here Harshal:

        Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.

        As soon as you made the statement: “G said that that there wont be any ‘special’ blessings. He did not say their wont be any blessings” you implied that there are “special” blessings and blessings which aren’t special.

        I had a good feeling that you wouldn’t be able to reply to this without shooting yourself in the foot even further, and I’m glad you didn’t let me down.

  7. Harshal permalink
    July 7, 2011 12:49 pm

    And why this unnecessary wastage ?

    I think writing on this blog is an unnecessary wastage of your time. So you should not write here.

    How do you know it was unnecessary ?

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 7, 2011 1:37 pm


    • Harshal permalink
      July 8, 2011 11:02 am

      “wont be any blessings” you implied that there are “special” blessings”

      ‘Implication’ is very subjective quality of human mind. Since you wont understand this, I will give an example.

      If I said, that today the earth is not square, I am not implying that there are two earths – one round and one square. Similarly when I said , that there wont be any special blessings , I am not implying that there are two types of blessings-special and non-special.

      But you based on your limited intellect, are putting your own implications into my mouth and wasting so much web-ink.

      I am very curious to know , what education you have had, like what degree etc…you dont have to tell though, I am pretty sure you haven’t had much of it. There are some things , you cant just hide!

      • user permalink
        July 8, 2011 6:21 pm

        sorry nothing against you, but against your degree logic..waht degree do you have, a high one i suppose….and what degree rs has…no one i guess…(some advanced degree in physics..)

      • user permalink
        July 8, 2011 6:22 pm

        and i like u harshal for ur simplicity….and being here…

      • user permalink
        July 8, 2011 6:27 pm

        and i fear u will want to stay here..:-)

      • Dayalu permalink
        July 8, 2011 11:09 pm


        “What education you have had, like what degree etc”

        Ha ha that is funny. The “degree” obsession in AOL that leads to claiming fake degrees.
        Certainly none of us here has “advanced degree in physics and Vedic sciences”. Only one person can claim that in the world

      • The Doctor permalink
        July 9, 2011 7:25 am

        Keep digging Harshal, you may just bury yourself so deep you’ll never be able to get out again.

        Guruji said: “it’s not that you’re going to go to Berlin and you’ll get special blessing will descend on you, nothing of that sort

        “nothing of that sort”. What did he mean by that? “nothing of that sort“? Although his English isn’t perfect, most who have a good command of English would agree that “that sort” here refers to blessings in general, and not to “special” blessings in particular. In fact, as I already pointed out in an earlier comment, since all blessings from Guruji must be special by their very nature (come on, they come from Guruji after all!), then the use of “special” in his statement is just superfluous and hence redundant. So the above statement would indicate that those who go to Berlin won’t receive any blessings for doing so.

        You on the other hand are arguing that he meant that they won’t receive “special” blessings, but that this still leaves the possibility that they might receive blessings which aren’t special. The only way for what you are arguing to be correct is if you were to admit that quite simply Guruji’s blessings aren’t special. If this is what you are trying to say, then I would agree with you, but then of course you will also be offending Guruji by saying this about the quality of his blessings. 😉

        But you may actually be right about my “limited intellect” (and you forgot to mention low prana ;-)). I’m arguing over something which is obviously complete nonsense (that Guruji somehow possesses the ability to “bless” people at all) with a fanatical bigot who believes otherwise.

        I wonder if it all that hyperventilating I did when I was with Art of Living may have caused long term brain damage?

  8. Harshal permalink
    July 7, 2011 1:49 pm

    Commonsense- you think that you have it, doesn’t mean you have it.

    • Anonymous permalink
      July 8, 2011 3:44 am

      So, you think you have it? 😉

      • Harshal permalink
        July 9, 2011 1:32 pm

        “I wonder if it all that hyperventilating I did when I was with Art of Living may have caused long term brain damage?”

        If I were you, I would be more worried about the soul damage after hyperblogging on these websites.

    • July 9, 2011 10:56 am

      Ok, here’s the thing. your illustration makes no sense.

      let me use a simple SAT question formula here to show you why.

      earth is to square as blessing is to ______

      if the correct answer is special, then that helps you see that where you imply special and non-special, you also imply square and not-square (or round.) you don’t imply two earths.


      saying something is special implies that there is something that is not special. That’s common sense. Saying something is not square implies that there is a shape OTHER THAN SQUARE. not that there are two earths.

      I’m really glad you weren’t in my debates when I was in high school. I would have had to spend all my time parsing why what you just said was idiotic rather than making a point of my own.

      • July 9, 2011 11:00 am

        I just realized a way to make this easier. Anytime Harshal says “similarly”, replace it with, “and with my magical logic dust i will make it seem like the next thought is related”.

      • stupidseeker permalink
        July 9, 2011 12:26 pm

        That one hit me straight in the gut. Respect

      • Harshal permalink
        July 9, 2011 1:35 pm


        I come here for entertainment.

        I am not going to indulge in arguments with an angry emotional woman, who might accuse me of web-abuse etc…. I think you should just take a long break and sort out things for yourself. All this blogging will only make things worse for you.

      • Jr. permalink
        July 9, 2011 4:07 pm

        No, you come here to do a good service in keeping others away from AOL.

        For each one of your stupid comments, you save hundreds of people who read this blog everyday. 🙂

    • July 9, 2011 11:23 pm


      calling me names won’t improve the efficacy of your magic logic dust.

      I am not “an angry, emotional woman”. I am a woman, I grant you. I experience emotions, among them anger– as well as joy, love, despair, curiosity, wonder, enthusiasm, trepidation– none of these things can define me. These things are in me, but I am not in them. I am an ineffable mystery. So are you.

      However, when you resort to degrading “angry, emotional women” simply because your magic logic dust stopped working, you look like a misogynist. And I think you’re better than that.

      So, why don’t you engage with what I say instead of calling me names? Likewise, why don’t you engage with the issues here rather than hurling petty insults?

  9. Jr. permalink
    July 7, 2011 5:49 pm

    Angry nature rained on your parade Harshy? 😉

    Thank you for continuing to post stupid comments. For each one your comments, you save hundreds of people every day who find this blog from the dangers of AOL. 😉

  10. Think permalink
    July 7, 2011 8:48 pm

    Mantra Sadhana: a new AOL course / source of revenue

    • Ahole permalink
      July 8, 2011 12:43 am

      Now you need to pay to chant om namah shivaya. Hope AOL does not start suing all those other folks teaching the same.

  11. freeagaiin permalink
    July 8, 2011 10:56 am

    World Culture Festival – in this day and age, with the human tragedies that are taking place, the environmental catastrophies happening around the world, this man, encourages his zombies to travel to Germany to “party up” – obviously its a good time for the zombies to travel according to the planets (no need to drive safely , no need to chant, etc etc), however why not send people to do “sewa” – to clean up, to help those in need….it seems more like part of the strategy of this cult is to make the zombie followers so narcissitic and self centred that they are oblivious to the rest of the world …compassion and service is only in the AOL context. what a pity, so much they could have given to japan, to christchurch, to those in india itself who need it, and yet the royal arseness decided it was time to party….

  12. Blossom permalink
    July 8, 2011 12:27 pm

    An article on Berlin festival in Times of India –

    • July 8, 2011 3:01 pm

      The article talks about how people were happy and celebrating despite the weather and that was somehow an indication of a triumph of spirit. Apparently, they have never been to a football game in cold rainy weather. The crowds gather and celebrate there too. It is not that big of a deal. I am glad the participant who went had a good time and that the weather didn’t really bother them, but it is hardly a sign of a “triumph of spirit”. Sports fans can be just as devoted at devotees in enduring bad weather.

  13. HH Swami Sri Qcumberji permalink
    July 8, 2011 3:27 pm

    The article in the Times of India stinks and the comments from the brain washed or brain dead zombies stink even more

  14. user permalink
    July 8, 2011 6:59 pm

    if you allow me to post some words of an empty mind..

    just another incident….i was at the berlin ashram on rs bday…13 may …he was there that day…he met us…..and one of the first things he said (to the local teacher there..) was…if they had shown us (visitors/others) the 25th jublee video…i was least interested in that…and then he sad we need to bring more and more people….i was not at all interested in that too..
    i had come to see a guru, may be i didnt have the eyes to see a guru….i met an unsatisfied marketing person there…

  15. Anonymous permalink
    July 9, 2011 6:41 am

    take care of this people GURUDEV !!!!!!!!

  16. Anonymous permalink
    July 9, 2011 6:56 pm

    “I wonder if it all that hyperventilating I did when I was with Art of Living may have caused long term brain damage?”

    You certainly seem to have lost your mind as you refer Ravi Shankar as Guruji.

  17. harshal permalink
    July 9, 2011 10:36 pm

    “You certainly seem to have lost your mind as you refer”

    No. It just means that he/she/it has some little good left in him.

    • The Doctor permalink
      July 10, 2011 6:47 am

      Harshal, you sound just like Luke Skywalker from the movie Return of the Jedi talking about Darth Vader. So ironic given the circumstances 😉

  18. anonymus permalink
    July 13, 2011 6:34 pm

    A video from satsang in Berlin.
    So much zombies, and one clown… 😦

    • You am I permalink
      July 14, 2011 6:26 am

      Lolz !

      self realization at it’s best ..a must watch for comic relief !

  19. Mia permalink
    July 19, 2011 12:53 pm

    Hello, just wanna post our reviews of the event here:

    Waste of time and money. Misleading advertising. The yoga activities, which was our reason for being there, got cancelled without notice. There were a few talks about the benefits of yoga, but we already knew all these things. (No need to preach to the converted.) There was nothing at all that deepened my understanding or practice of yoga. The performances were mostly mediocre and didn’t match the venue at all. Choir of 300 people, 1,000 guitars in the Olympia Stadion etc. Sounds great on paper, but in reality, you only hear 5 people or 5 guitars as they only had a few microphones. There were also 2,000 “dancers” from Bulgaria who did nothing but walk and swing their right foot over their left leg and vice versa. Most other performances were like that: quantity over quality. As for the food, there was only one Berlin-based caterer which served expensive bland food in small servings, and we had to pay using their impractical non-refundable tickets. Totally did not match the theme of world culture and diversity. Can’t believe we spent over 50 euros per person on this. It’s not at all a “mega-yoga event” or “world culture festival” as advertised. It’s actually the 30th anniversary celebration of a cult organization called the Art of Living, whose members are fanatical about its founder, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. The program brochure, the videos that interspersed the shows and everything else was full of Sri Sri, Sri Sri, Sri Sri. So sickening! When we got home, we did some research on Sri Sri and it turns out our hunches are right. This guy is a total scam and PR stunt guy. Just google the following phrases: “The The great great Sri Sri NGO NGO scam scam”, “Beyond the Art of Living”, “Beware of His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and AOL”.

  20. Fred permalink
    July 19, 2011 12:54 pm

    Wir waren am Samstag 02.07. dabei und bekamen im Laufe des Tages ein komisches Gefühl, daß etwas nicht stimmte. Es waren bestimmt keine 70.000 Menschen aus 151 Nationen anwesend und Yoga mitmachten war ausgeschlossen (Vieles wurde auch ohne jegliche Meldung abgesagt). Fremde Kulturen kennenlernen war offensichtlich auch nicht gerade das Ziel dieser Verantstaltung. Es war viel mehr ein riesiger PR-Stunt der Art of Living Stiftung und im Nachhinein betrachtet eher als Betrug zu bezeichnen. Medienaufmerksamkeit erregen mit Weltrekorden (1000 Gitarristen! usw.) war viel wichtiger als Kulturaustausch, Yoga und Spirituelles. Zuhause haben wir dann die Hintergründe dieser Organisation nachgeprüft und wir waren erstaunt mit den Suchergebnisse. Suchen Sie einfach Folgendes auf Google: “The The great great Sri Sri NGO NGO scam scam”, “Beyond the Art of Living”, “Beware of His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and AOL”. Wir wollten dies melden!

  21. stupidseeker permalink
    August 1, 2011 4:00 pm

    Sorry folks, I know it’s not right but I couldn’t help myself from posting elitsa todorova’s spirited performance of “Voda” at the WCF in berlin.

    Too bad it had to be in the service of a commercial religious cult, and to such thin crowds, but nonetheless brilliant.

    • Original Anonymous permalink
      August 2, 2011 6:01 am

      The seats are empty? Did 20,000 actually attend this festival?

  22. Original Anonymous permalink
    August 2, 2011 6:04 am

    There seem to be more people performing than the audience ..

  23. stupidseeker permalink
    August 2, 2011 10:08 am

    20,000? You are wrong mate. The AOL website says 70000 attended the WCF gig. Check it out below.

    • Original Anonymous permalink
      August 2, 2011 4:56 pm

      Funny coz 70000, is the capacity of the stadium and does not look a full turnout by any chance..

      • Original Anonymous permalink
        August 2, 2011 5:06 pm

        The events and songs were nice.. . I think the turnout must have been between 10000 to 15000 people(including the dignitaries etc.. all people were stacked up in one side of the stadium to get the crowded stadium shot.

  24. stupidseeker permalink
    August 2, 2011 10:13 am


    this is the approximate english translation of what fred wrote in german using google translator

    We were on Saturday 02.07. while during the day and got a funny feeling that something went along were not determined stimmte.Es 70,000 people from 151 nations attended yoga and was excluded (Much has been canceled without any notification). Learn about foreign cultures was obviously not exactly the goal of this Verantstaltung. It was much more a giant PR stunt of the Art of Living Foundation and in hindsight to be characterized as fraud. Attract media attention with world records (1000 guitarists! Etc.) was much more important than cultural exchange, yoga and Spirituelles.Zuhause we then checked the background of this organization and we were amazed with the results. Just search on Google the following: “The The great great Sri Sri NGO NGO scam scam”, “Beyond the Art of Living” and “Beware of His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and AOL.” We wanted to report this!

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