Figures that Speak. Sociologists Depicting the Portray of the MISA Yogi

by Angela Anghel

In May 2005, a group of specialists started a large psycho-sociologic investigation concerning the MISA yogis. During the first stage of the study, 300 yoga practitioners answered the questionnaires referring to health, family, education, job issues, etc. Next we are presenting to you a few extremely significant preliminary statistics. According to them, the MISA yoga practitioners are mainly intellectual, socially well integrated, with a balanced and healthy life. It is remarkable to notice that the incidence of serious social issues (such as alienation, psychic disorders or vices) is almost inexistent among yogis.

The age of the participants at this research is between 17 and 70. As you can see in the chart below, most of them (44%) fall in the range of 30-40 years. This fact contradicts the opinion reported by the press according to which the MISA courses attract only young people (probably underage).

While starting with 1990, the marriage figures dramatically and constantly decreased in Romania (an aspect acknowledged by the reports of the National Statistics Institute), the number of the MISA yogis who got married is continuously increasing. How about the Yoga that tears families apart (the dominant theme of the media campaign against MISA)???

Over three quarters of the yogis are professionally active. Among those who work, most of them are still students. 64% of the interviewed persons are employed by an official institution and 12% percent have their personal business. The press allegations according to which yogis have no orientation and are socially not integrated prove once again to have no basis. Moreover, the number of unemployed yogis is twice as small as the unemployment rate in Romania.

The chart below illustrates the practitioners’ professional status before attending the Yoga course, as compared to their present one. A definite positive evolution of most yogis is to be discerned. If, for instance, 40% of the interviewed practitioners did not use to work before coming to the yoga courses, at present only 14 % are not employed. The figures are also a result of the fact that some of the interviewed practitioners joined the courses while they were still at the university while many of them, previously unemployed, are now working for a company or started their own business.

More than three quarters of the interviewed persons have completed their university education and another 12% are still at the university (therefore a total of 87 % students and persons in possession of a university degree). 17% of the total number are also in possession of a master’s degree, including doctorate. Therefore the yogis are not disoriented persons – outcast of the society; on the contrary, we are talking about a group of intellectuals!

All practitioners interviewed mentioned that Yoga brought them multiple benefits on several levels. The most often mentioned are related to health improvement, increased faith in God, a positive and optimist life attitude, better understanding of reality, inner balance, freedom from prejudices and complexes, development of self-confide. Below you can find the statistical data for the main answers:

With regard to their health state, since they practice yoga, one third of the interviewed practitioners have only been confronted with minor cold and almost one tenth of them state they do not remember the last time they were sick.

While before starting to attend the Yoga courses, 37% of the interviewed practitioners used to smoke, at present none of them smokes anymore. None of the interviewed persons takes drugs. 94% of them are lacto-vegetarian.

Most of the interviewed practitioners (67%) consider that the Yoga practice caused absolutely no inconvenience to them. Some were even intrigued by such a question. Those who offered different answers referred to public discrimination and disgrace or to the disapproval of their acquaintances, friends or even families because of the distorted image about the MISA Yoga course. Here you have an overview of the answers to this question:

A very large percentage, 47% of the interviewed practitioners declared they had not been personally subjected to any kind of discrimination for practicing Yoga and 56% are informed with regard to other discrimination cases.

Only 15 out of the more than 300 interviewed practitioners mention having been counseled by a psychiatrist in cases of accidents or related to their job – during the necessary yearly examination and not because they suffer from any psychic disorders. On the other hand, there are 5 persons who are informed with regard to the compulsory psychiatry institutionalization of their colleagues by own relatives, in order to be „cured from Yoga”.

The language used by those who answered such questionnaires is far from the fanaticism, stereotypes or rigidity of a denominational, sectarian language. In exchange, it displays intelligence, power of reason, common sense, good social anchoring and a high educational level.

The statistical results presented herein fully contradict the conclusions of the so-called „specialty studies” reported by the press with regard to MISA. The materials presented by CROMA SRL (Tudorel Butoi’s company – TB is a former criminal psychologist of the communist Secret Services) are „basic” evidence in the set-up file against MISA. While in breach of the legal stipulations, the fake studies were handed over to the press by the investigating authorities. We insist upon the fact that the materials drawn up by CROMA SRL and Tudorel Butoi violate all deontological norms of a professional psychologist. Such norms strongly require that all psychological assessments – all the more any conclusions made public or representing the basis of important decisions – should start from the thorough investigation of the reality they point at, while making use of valid scientific means.



Also available in: Română Français

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More