ONE WOMAN'S STORY:
Because I think it is very wrong for spiritual leaders (who have our trust) to do this sort of thing, I want
to inform you of my experience. I am 66, so what happened to me was shortly after Ananda Community was open to the public for week long yoga retreats, about 30 years. ago. At that time, I had 3 small children and had
gone through a very unhappy divorce as my husband left me for another woman. My self-esteem was at a low ebb, although I was fairly attractive at the time. I had an "illumination" experience in 1963, while
praying for a person, so thus began my quest, quite before the metaphysical hippy days had started. I read AY and yearned for the Kriya Yoga initiation techniques, to further my spiritual growth and understanding of my
Joyously, I discovered that there was an actual Kriya yoga instructor, in the person of Swami Kriyananda (SK), who came to San Rafael to deliver his teachings. I was very impressed, as I
knew that his name would mean "bliss in Kriya" and that surely he must be a Master. I had been studying the *** lessons, and other yoga studies, and was aware of the humble respect and service one should
demonstrate toward one's teacher, guru, swami, etc., and that it was a special honor to be singled out by them for any kind of attention or service request, that it was likened to serving The Master, or even God. I was
also aware of the law of Karma, (cause and effect), and the fact that SK had taken a vow of celibacy.
I invited SK and a young woman (later called K), who seemed quite dazzled by SK for dinner, so SK was more
aware of me than others who had taken his classes in this area.
When I was at Ananda, I believe it was my second visit there, SK "honored" me by requesting I come to his abode to give him a foot
massage. I felt very honored to have been thus chosen, considering that he had his own entourage of people who actually lived at Ananda to fulfill this noble function.
This took place on the outside deck of his
home, while SK reclined in a hammock. Shortly, after I had begun to massage his feet, he pulled up his orange cotton garment and proudly revealed his large, bare, tumescent penis, and he gallantly invited me to massage
it (while fondling himself), and have intercourse.
I was shocked, terribly embarrassed, humiliated, disgusted, and worst of all, AFRAID. I had previously been beaten for turning down a man's sexual overtures. I
knew I had done nothing whatsoever to entice or seduce SK. I had been modest, dressed modestly and had acted with dignity and humbleness. I was also amazed that SK would do this in broad daylight outside, when anyone
could have approached from the surrounding area, where people easily wandered around. However, I felt safe in declining his request out there, than I would have inside his home. That made me more assertive, because I
felt he wouldn't attack me physically outside as I could scream or someone might see us, if I declined him and made him angry.
Curiously, what actually came to mind after that was that I did not want the
responsibility of messing up his karma, and taking on negative karma myself by being a party to his losing his vow of celibacy, so I respectfully declined his "kind offer", to mate with him. He didn't argue,
and I left.
I even wondered if he was trying to "honor" me with this special privilege so I would donate a lot of
money to his community, since he had seen my nice home on the golf course in San
Rafael, and he may have assumed I had money to spare for such things, but I did not.
I left Ananda quite saddened, depressed, and disillusioned, I canceled my *** mail lessons. I was shocked at the lack of
integrity of this man who was functioning as the spiritual leader of this community, with innocent people trusting him. I even felt it was a "test" by God of my own integrity, or maybe Kriyananda had thought
it up to see if I was a worthy chela or not, To me it was cruel, and beneath the dignity of a spiritual leader, and certainly reflected badly on the teachings, and that there was a pretense at celibacy so that a woman
could feel safe in the Ananda environment, without fear of being attacked. My trust was violated and compromised. I even felt GUILT that I had not accommodated his request, for fear I should have obeyed him, and
consequently wondered where I stood spiritually with "God", as a result of my noncompliance, which added to my depression. I was still of an age that women were supposed to home and obey the clergy, doctors,
and lawyers. My mother told me to. I am a lot wiser now.
Back to top