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The writer of this testimonial wishes to remain anonymous. He spent several years with Shunyamurti and Sat Yoga.

Anonymous 2

First of all I want to recognize the positive things about Sat Yoga. Many people there have sincere intentions of improving their lives, achieving peace, and living a quiet harmonious existence. They work hard to be self-sustainable, have learned a lot on permaculture practices, and study a lot as well many interesting philosophies and sciences.

I have good friends there and that was the most difficult part of leaving the community, to let them go… But, freedom is my new best friend and I am very happy with the decision!! 

Having said that, my years of cult-experience at the Sat Yoga Ashram can be summarized in the following points.

  1. The leader of the project, Robert Shubow (aka Shunyamurti), is known to offer VIP quality treatment to those clients who pay big bucks for sessions ($100 or more for less than one hour session). Unfortunately (for the customers!) these sessions are interminable and many members (including old inner-circle “disciples”) have paid for years lots of money and most likely will keep paying for many more years. So watch out for your wallet!

  2. Mr. Shubow is not even a certified psychologist (even though on the early days he used to say he had a PhD on Psychology) and he has been charging for “professional” psychological sessions for decades! When I asked him once for his career certificate, he got upset and refused.

  3. Retreats are their main income $$$. The entire project depends financially on finding vulnerable naïve rich “boys and girls” with money to pay thousands of dollars for one week at the ashram, or for those unlucky ones who prolong their stay will have to surely pay big bucks for it! The place runs more like a business than a spiritual ashram, which is profitable for those who own the assets, not for the “yogi-customers” which are the majority and are not allowed to talk about community finances.

  4. Those who invest in this project will most likely never receive a dime in return. A word of advice to people is that they leave their savings/inheritances to true foundations and honorable social causes, not to pay for a guru´s “dream” (or nightmare!) retirement fund.

  5. One of the many control methods used by the guru is creating dependency with his followers, and the use of various “substances” in private/covert sessions is one way he tries to accomplish this. Those treatments could be used later as blackmail by the guru to keep his customers quiet, dependent, and fearful.

  6. It is a 100% cult environment. People are forbidden to talk to members who leave the community. People are threatened to be rejected by the community if they do not invest their savings (and their family´s) in the ashram project. You are not allowed to contradict Shubow publicly. You are not allowed to leave the ashram (not even to the near-by beach for a weekend). You are not allowed to eat a pizza downtown. You are not allowed to have a positive relationship with your family and friends. You must attend all of Shubow´s classes 24/7 (boring!!!!!!!). Those who stop blindly obeying the guru will be kicked out or sabotaged in some way. A good-old cult!

  7. Members are “milked” with monthly fees of over $850+ to pay for ongoing ashram expenses. People give everything to the community and end up losing everything as well. The guru raises people´s spiritual rank the more money they contribute. Those who do not have money will have to work around the clock for room/board and ask their family for money to pay for all their other life expenses. Some volunteers who have been participating for years don’t even have money to even buy toothpaste, not to mention medical insurance or immigration/residency fees.

  8. Outside family members are seen as the enemy and Robert Shubow will do all in his mighty guru dictatorship to separate his followers from their families. But of course, first he tries to get as much money as possible out of the family/spouse.

  9. The guru lives very well and in a big fancy home, eats luxury foods, and gets expensive private medical care (I even heard from another student that he was taken to one of the most expensive hospitals in San José to get facial laser treatment to look younger than ever :). Shubow works as much as he wishes, has servants all around him, and can leave the community at his own choice, while the rest of the “community” has to play the Cinderella part and no one (with a few secret exceptions!) gets paid any income, most are forced to wake up at 3:30am, sleep in bunk beds and are not allowed to leave the ashram.

  10. The apocalyptic guru is well known to pitch to his followers that the world is going to end in days, that the outside world is bad and dangerous and only stupid blind imbeciles would consider collaborating with society, and that he has special private “conversations” with God (Shiva) so following him is their true (Sat) salvation… Unfortunately many people fall for such delusion and give up a lot of years (possibly a lifetime!!) to such insanity from such a supreme narcissist and scammer.


I send my best wishes to those who have chosen to remain in the ashram. Please don´t lose hope on your life!!! I also send my sincere congratulations to the courageous ones who have jumped the ashram Titanic ship before it´s too late, and always know you are strong, beautiful and loving, and so is the world.

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