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Shouldn't Andrew Cohen step down?
on July 12, 2012
It has been suggested by anonymous sources, otherwise fearful, to me as a critic of various guru figures, to make public a request that Andrew Cohen step down from his position as 'guru' in the context of his EnlightenNext initiative.
The account in this excellent work is so depressingly clear on the issue of guru abuse that I think some kind of outside intervention or declaration is needed.
The legacy of confusion here has gone on for a whole generation and includes the figures, Da Free John, E.J.Gold, Lee Lozowick and Andrew Cohen. The whole sequence here has been haywire from the beginning.
The account here is of a baffling display of pathological behavior masked by a misleading endorsement of Cohen's reputed enlightenment. The original source of this endorsement is itself entirely suspect and has empowered a very a questionable career of authoritarian behavior.
One of the larger problems here is the lack of any traditional context made clear. What is the canon of the guru? What religion is in the background, Hinduism, Buddhism, ...? The lack of any clear context for a teaching has produced a completely vacuous teaching made up 'as you go along'.
The quest for enlightenment beyond ego is not achieved by (egoic) ego-bashing of 'disciples' by a teacher. Ego cannot be destroyed by castigation and attempts to destroy a person's psyche. It is a misunderstanding to think you can destroy ego, and the task is that of self-enlightening transcendence of ego, by the individual in question, and in the final analysis the guru figure is at best a witness to what the disciple must do. The kind of shenanigans depicted in this book show someone out of control, with no grasp of what is needed.
The Buddhist declaration of the entry to the Path of Enlightenment makes no reference as such to gurus or guruism. The fetish of the guru as absolute authority is a late distortion of the original primordial tradition. Real seekers might well seek the counsel of a wise figure on the way to self-enlightenment. But the decadence of the yogic tradition into the guru royalty phenomenon has no place in a democratic age, and is not needed. In fact it is often a front for reactionary politics masquerading as spiritual practice. The art of being a guru is a hard one, and at best that of a witness to the self-action of those who enter the path.
On the basis of the information given by this book it should be clear that the authority of this impostor is void, and without any basis.