Slander sans Substance

Over the last 25-30 years, there have been a few motivated groups—small, yet loud and vicious—who have relentlessly slandered Isha Foundation without an iota of factual substance. Today, with fake news, paid media and social media at hand, we see these vested groups weaving a systematized web of lies, finding insidious ways to malign the Foundation. As the reach of Isha has now touched the lives of 9 million volunteers and 500 million followers worldwide, in response to repeated appeals from them to publish the truth, we now stand up and provide the FACTS for the most commonly created FICTIONS.
 
 

FICTION

FACT

Fiction

Isha Foundation has encroached on forest land

Fact

The land where the Yoga Center stands is 100% patta land purchased legally from private individuals. The officials of the Tamil Nadu Forest Department have verified and clearly documented the above, confirming that Isha Yoga Center has not infringed onto forest land and that there is no adverse impact on the surrounding flora and fauna. The document reference number CFCIT/07/2013 was quoted by the Tamil Nadu Forest Department in its Counter Affidavit for Writ Petitions filed by pseudo environmental groups in the Hon’ble Madras High Court and National Green Tribunal. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India, in its Counter Affidavit filed before the National Green Tribunal has reiterated the same.

Interested parties can verify this further with a combination of survey maps, revenue records, Panchayat records and land coordinates.

For details read here.

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Fiction

Isha Yoga Center is located on an Elephant Corridor

Fact

Elephant corridors are narrow strips of land varying from 100 m to 1 km in width that serve as transit passages between two elephant habitats. As we stand, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India, has listed the elephant corridors through ‘Gajah’, the annual report of the Elephant Task Force. Isha Yoga Center is not located in any of these elephant corridors. The report ‘Right of Passage’ by the Wildlife Trust of India, is edited by eminent scientists working in the field of Elephant conservation – Isha Yoga Center is not present in any of the Elephant corridors listed by them.

For more on this,read here.

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Fiction

The 112-ft Adiyogi is just another attention-seeking statue, an ego trip by the Isha Foundation

Fact

Adiyogi has been offered to the world as a symbol, an inspiration to move humanity from vague and divisive methods of approaching human wellbeing to a scientific and systemic approach. Ideologies, belief systems and philosophies have divided humanity forever, causing wars and genocides. This is essentially a mission to move humanity from Religion to Responsibility.

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Fiction

Isha Foundation has cut down forests to establish the Adiyogi Statue

Fact

As with the rest of the Yoga Center, the land that was purchased for installing the Adiyogi statue is privately-owned land. The Reserve Forest Land is nowhere close to the boundary of the private land. The District Forest Officer also has issued a NOC to the installation of the Adiyogi statue. The Foundation has approvals from the necessary authorities, including the District Collector, Coimbatore, the Forest Department and BSNL. A structural stability certificate from a government-certified engineer has also been issued for the 112-ft Adiyogi statue.

You will find the whole truth about the web of allegations orchestrated to discredit the Adiyogi image here.

To know about Isha’s engagement with nature read here.

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Fiction

The buildings inside Isha Yoga Center are illegal constructions

Fact

Initially, while planning the buildings of the Yoga Center, we applied and acquired the Panchayat approvals as standard procedure. All other NOCs were in place except for one from the Forest Department. With regards to the Forest NOC, the official did not respond despite our repeated appeals due to certain personal vendetta. It is true however that we went ahead and completed the construction in spite of not having the HACA clearances in hand at that time. A High Level Committee from TN Forest Department dismissed the false report of the particular officer, which was made with malicious intent. The Forest Department NOC was accorded post facto. The Hill Area Conservation Authority through its 59th meeting held at Chennai gave the Technical Clearance to all the constructions and the Foundation has paid the amount due to the Town & Country Planning Department under Infrastructure & Amenity Charges. The buildings have now been regularized and as we stand, all the buildings within the Yoga Center premises have all the necessary permissions.

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Fiction

Spiritual people are supposed to be hardy, like wandering monks and should be happy in thatched huts, eating fruit and berries. They don’t need proper accommodation, toilets, dining halls etc

Fact

For centuries, the spiritual process was transmitted as a mainstream tradition in India, accessible to all segments of society and fostered by kings, business and social leaders. Over the years, under the oppression of occupying forces, this same process was suppressed, eventually available only to a fringe of society. Over time, this led to the belief that individuals who are on the spiritual path must live barren, destitute lives surviving merely on fruits and dry leaves, residing in forests and caves. This disastrous idea has been enough to close the doors of the inner sciences to millions.

In Isha, it is Sadhguru’s endeavor and work to bring the spiritual process from the mountain tops to people’s homes, towns and villages. If we are to make the spiritual process mainstream, it is of utmost importance that we work with the current reality and create the appropriate context for individuals to receive this profound science. We live in a time and age with not much choice of forests left for us to live in and no caves to be accessed. Most importantly, human beings have lost their innate ability not only to survive in nature and find their food, but even to live in slightly uncomfortable conditions.

We trust all of you will appreciate the minimum comfort levels available at our Center, including nutritious food, comfortable bedding, clean bathrooms and electricity.

Read more about this here and here.

Fiction

Two monks were being held captive in 2016

Fact

This was a farrago of lies. The plea was instigated by vested interests, alleging that two young women were kidnapped and held at the Yoga Center against their will. Contacts in media informed us that it cost our accusers several crores to sustain this month-long smear campaign in July-August 2016.

In spite of social pressures to marry, the two adult women—well educated and aware—came to the Isha Yoga Center of their own will, with the sole focus of pursuing their spiritual path. Anybody who has interacted with them would be affronted that someone could even question their mental faculties. The Habeas Corpus plea was naturally dismissed by the court.

Read the details here.

Fiction

There was a controversy about Smt Vijayakumari’s passing; the cremation was hush-hush

Fact

On 23rd January 1997, Vijji Maa attained Mahasamadhi—the coveted goal of many a spiritual seeker, what Gautama the Buddha referred to as Mahaparinirvana—a practice where accomplished yogis with mastery over their life process consciously choose to exit their physical body at an auspicious time. At an appointed time that she had chosen—which everyone in closer circles was made conscious of, including her own 7 year old daughter—she exited effortlessly, at will. Eight months later, those who were set against Sadhguru's work at the time used Vijji Maa's Mahasamadhi as an opportunity to file a police complaint, claiming that foul play should be suspected in her passing, the main accusation being that the cremation was hush-hush. The fact is the cremation happened 12 hours following her passing in the presence of over 2,000 people. To expose these shamelessly false allegations, we requested a full investigation from the police and judiciary, who found there was no substance at all in the complaint other than an intent to malign, and as per Court Order issued on 8/1/1999, the complaint was dismissed.

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Fiction

Isha uses ‘Laughing Gas’ on people to keep them happy

Fact

We’re usually on a different mood enhancer. It’s called Yoga.

Fiction

Isha steals people’s kidneys

Fact

We hope these ludicrous people know what is a kidney, where in the body it is located. Seems like someone stole their brains.

Fiction

Isha keeps thousands of people maintained under coma

Fact

To understand the true facts—please come and experience the dynamism of the Isha Yoga Center.

 
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