M.I.S.A. to Denounce Abuse in the Media of over 45,000 Yoga Students and Sympathizers


Şoseaua Sălaj, nr. 2, bloc 126 A, parter, sector 5 – Bucharest, Phone / Fax: 424.14.42


Bucharest, 12 April 2005. The M.I.S.A. Yoga School protests against the distorted image the Romania media continues to convey about the school itself and its students, as well as about Gregorian Bivolaru, its spiritual mentor. The people attending Yoga classes are portrayed as fanatics, Bivolaru’s victims and slaves, who are socially isolated, suffer from mental problems, and practice group sex or prostitution, in the case of women. These extremely rude accusations hurt the dignity of M.I.S.A. members and can have a seriously damaging effect on their lives.

Lately, the media have often quoted the opinions of various authors who unfortunately lack either the competence, or the means to understand and study the real activities of the M.I.S.A. Yoga School or the physical and mental health of its students. Their opinions are erroneously presented as accredited points of view, and the public tends to take them as viable references in forming an opinion about M.I.S.A.

A terrible example in point is the article published in the Gardianul newspaper on 11 April 2005 under the title “Fanatic Worship”, that speaks about a “study conducted by a group of famous psychologists”. The study was conducted and presented without observing a proper methodology, and in violation of the Code of Ethics of the psychological profession. Let us mention some of the more relevant details: 

  1. The authors of the study are not mentioned.

  2. The study does not contain a presentation of the methodology used.

  3. The study fails to supply concrete data to substantiate the veracity of the statements formulated. The language used is vague, generalizing: “there are numerous cases”, “it has been found among several members of the movement”, “the majority of the practitioners”, etc.

  4. The provisions of the psychologists” Professional Code of Ethics are violated. Among the major provisions that are violated, we think it is important to mention Art. XIV.11. that runs as follows: “psychologists shall not present false data for which no measurements have been actually performed”.

  5. The conclusions of the study are not based on an objective investigation of reality, but rather on the interpretation of already distorted statements borrowed from the media, or information taken out of context.

To put it briefly, the authors of this so-called study have not met and have not talked to any yoga practitioner, and have not submitted them to any specialized test. Consequently, we consider that this study does not even exist or, if we accept that it exists, as literary prose, then it has no scientific value.

To the best of our knowledge, only one sociological study has been conducted so far, under the coordination of Carmen Marcus, a graduate of the Sociology Department in Cluj, whose findings were presented in a paper entitled “Psycho-Social Effects of Yoga Practice”. The study states that yoga practice has beneficial affects on M.I.S.A. members, that the students are well integrated in social and professional life, and they have an improved health status. The findings of this study are based on statistical data and concrete examples. No other team of psychologists or sociologists have conducted direct, unmediated observations so far, or have applied psychological tests to generate data for an analysis of this Yoga school, of life in the ashrams, and the practitioners’ behaviour and personality.

Remember that M.I.S.A. Yoga School pursue socio-professional, philosophical and educational objectives. The goal of the organization is to contribute to elevating the members” spiritual level by adequate training, and by disseminating the ancient knowledge and practices of this millennium-long science, Yoga.

M.I.S.A. is ready to start legal action against all those who have committed this new abuse against yoga practitioners.

For additional information, please contact:
The M.I.S.A. Press Office
E-mail: biroudepresa_misa@yahoo.com


Also available in: Română

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