Been watching the growing interest in this thread, as evidenced by increasing #'s of views and the intelligent, compassionate sharing of those that have broken free from the isha "web" and have reclaimed their God-given abilities to discern, decide and do things in their best interest physically, psychologically, emotionally, spiritually or otherwise, rather than in the best interest of Isha.
Was guided to read a book "Without the Guru" "How I took my life back after thirty years", by Michael Finch. He gave it all up for Guru Maharaji (the self proclaimed Lord of the Universe, Prem Rawat), but came to his senses 30 years later and has shared this very insightful look into what was going on in his head and heart not to mention what was going on in their organization as it spread around the world in the 70's, 80's & 90's much like Isha is doing now. I'm nearly finished with the book and what I've found to be particularly helpful and hopeful to read is how he snapped out of the trance largely as a result of the sharing by ex-devotees who were posting experiences on the (new at the time) world wide web/internet.
He writes of how, finally, people who were "in the know", inner circle devotees who helped facilitate some not-so-holy activities for the Lord of the Universe, finally went public. And why would anyone do that? With that organization or Isha or any other? For the notoriety? Don't think so. Why? Because sooner or later, one realizes that one must maintain one's Integrity and share what they know to be the truth about the "so-called Truth" of the Lord of the Universe, or about Osho, or about David Koresh, or about SJV, or whoever the cult leader happens to be...
And so threads like this become available for review...and yet you have hit the nail upon the head...we do have free choice here on this earth Free choice to go to Isha, to participate further, and, we are told, free choice to leave Isha when we desire.
But I'll let you all know that once you're in deep, you are told you no longer have any choices. He makes the choices for you. You may be told you are never, ever leaving. You may be told that the rest of your life you will be there. You may be made to feel as any cult would do that if you leave, you will hurt all the others, especially yourself. And regarding "energetic processes" referred to by Paul...SJV refers to this repeatedly in programs as well as pertaining to the entire Isha experience...God forbid we mess up the energetic processes! When you are told that your leaving Isha will set back not only your own so called spiritual progress, but that of countless others, how are you supposed to feel about that? Little? Tiny? Unknowing? Unworthy? How many adjectives can one come up with to answer that question? It's just plain ridiculous, the manipulation, the head games.
Were people to start sharing experiences of doubt & irreconcilable conflicts of interest as well as immoral and adulterous activity from not only their involvement in Isha programs, but also from stays and involvement at the ashram and the TN center and "private" meetings with SJV, then more people might be spared the humiliation of eventually one day admitting to oneself and those loved ones still around them that they had made a big mistake, been duped, lied to, used, disrespected.
One final word on this 3 month long program that has been mentioned...sounds like it resembles very much what SJV used to refer to as "Teacher's Training" in the early days. And let it be known, just as any military in the world conducts Basic Training as a means to break down "you" as an individual in order that they may remake & remold you into an efficient, unthinking, unquestioning weapon...so, too, does Isha with it's Teacher's Training...breaking you down, completely and utterly: sleep deprivation, monotonous repetition, intensely rigorous expectations of memorization, etc. that you essentially become a "vessel" for SJV to flow through...they even teach them to speak like him, act like him, walk like him, etc...
Beware. He's not who he says he is.