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Stripping the Gurus:
German version (abridged) of Stripping the Gurus is now available!
This forthcoming book (c. 2015) will trace the evolution of religion and meditation-based spirituality from paleolithic, pre-scientific times into our ownfrom shamanic rituals and healing, through alchemy, into the neuroscience underlying higher-state-of-consciousness experiences.
I am blogging my research as I do it, and welcome constructive feedback in the comments.
Hardcover version of Stripping the Gurus is available!
Hardcover version of "Norman Einstein": The Dis-Integration of Ken Wilber is available!
Armed with wit, insight, and truly astonishing research, Geoffrey Falk utterly demolishes the notion of the enlightened guru who can lead devotees to nirvana. This entertaining and yet deadly serious book should be read by everyone pursuing or thinking of pursuing the path of guru devotion.
John Horgan, author of Rational Mysticism
Stripping the Gurus is superbone of the best books of its kind I have ever read. The research is meticulous, the writing engaging, and the overall thesis: devastatingly true. A stellar book.
Dr. David C. Lane, California State University
This gripping and disturbing book should be read by anyone who finds themself revering a spiritual teacher.
Susan Blackmore, author of The Meme Machine
Geoffrey Falk's delightful but disturbing unmasking of religious prophets and preachers who command a vast following is a welcome contribution to the literature on the gurus and god-men of all religions.
Dr. Narasingha P. Sil, Western Oregon University
No one involved in contemporary spirituality can afford to ignore this book. It exposes the darker side of modern spiritual movements, those embarrassingsometime vicious or criminalreports which the leaders of these movements prefer to hide. With wit and humility, and without abandoning the verities of religion, Falk has provided a corrective critique of groups that peddle enlightenment and transcendence. A must!
Len Oakes, author of Prophetic Charisma
Ramakrishna was a homoerotic pedophile.
His chief disciple, Vivekananda, visited brothels in India.
Krishnamurti carried on an affair for over twenty years with the wife of a good friend. Chögyam Trungpa drank himself into an early grave. One of Adi Da's nine "wives" was a former Playboy centerfold. Bhagwan Rajneesh sniffed laughing gas to get high. Andrew Cohen, guru and publisher of What Is Enlightenment? magazine, by his own reported admission sometimes feels "like a god."
These are typical of the "wizened sages" to whom otherwise-sensible people give their devotion and unquestioning obedience, surrendering their independence, willpower, and life's savings in the hope of realizing for themselves the same "enlightenment" as they ascribe to the "perfect, God-realized" master.
Is it for being emotionally vulnerable and "brainwashed," as the "anti-cultists" assert? Or for being "willingly psychologically seduced," as the apologists unsympathetically counter, confident that they themselves are "too smart" to ever fall into the same trap? Or have devotees simply walked, with naïvely open hearts and thirsty souls, into inherent dynamics of power and obedience which have showed themselves in classic psychological studies from Milgram to Zimbardo, and to which each one of us is susceptible every day of our lives?
Like the proud "Rude Boy" Cohen allegedly said, with a laugh, in response to the nervous breakdown of one of his devoted followers: "It could happen to any one of you."
Don't let it happen to you. Don't get suckered in. Be prepared. Be informed. Find out what reportedly goes on behind the scenes in even the best of our world's spiritual communities.
You can start by reading this book.
|Are you trying to leave a cult-like environment, but afraid to do so for not having any money to start out with? This information may help.|
|I||Speak No Evil|
|II||A Bit of a Booby||Ramakrishna|
|III||The Handsome Duckling||Vivekananda|
|V||The Krinsh||Jiddu Krishnamurti|
|VII||Sex, Bliss, and Rock 'n' Roll||Satchidananda|
|VIII||The Sixth Beatle||Maharishi Mahesh Yogi|
||Ram Dass, etc.|
|X||Scorpion-Man||Satya Sai Baba|
|XI||Even If It Happened....||Swami Rama|
|XIII||Thai Surprise||Thai Buddhism|
|XV||Werner's Uncertainty Principle||
|XVI||Cockroach Yoga||Yogi Bhajan|
|XVII||A Wild and Crazy Wisdom Guy||Chögyam Trungpa|
|XIX||The Mango Kid||
|XX||Da Avatar, Da Bomb, Da Bum||Adi Da|
|XXI||Sometimes I Feel Like a God||Andrew Cohen|
|XXII||Hello, Dalai!||The Dalai Lama|
|XXIII||Up the Asana||Yogi Amrit Desai|
|XXIV||Sodomy and Gomorrah||Roman Catholic Church|
|XXV||Of Cabbages and Nature Sprites||Findhorn|
|XXVI||... To a Nunnery||
|XXVII||Gurus and Prisoners|
|XXIX||After the Ordeal|
|XXX||Make It Better|
|Essential Online Resources|
|About the Author|
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Trademarks: "TM" and "Transcendental Meditation" are service marks registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, licensed to Maharishi Vedic Education Development Corporation. "Coke" is a registered trademark of the Coca-Cola Company. "Barbie" is a registered trademark of Mattel, Inc. "Molly Maid" is a trademark of Molly Maid International, Inc. "Spiral Dynamics" is a registered trademark of the National Values Center, Inc. "Adobe" and "Reader" are registered trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated.
* The inclusion of any particular individual in Stripping the Gurus is not meant to suggest or imply that he or she represents him- or herself as a guru, nor is it meant to suggest or imply that he or she has indulged in sex, violence, the abuse of others, or any other illegal or immoral activities.
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