S#!T Bhakti Yogis Say.

Via Big Happy Day
on May 14, 2012
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Finally! Someone had to do it.

This weekend at Shaktifest we were swimming in an ocean of devotional hippies, yogis and artists. This video was easy to make, we just captured them in their natural setting.


About Big Happy Day

Big Happy Day LLC was founded to create a venue that allows the many facets of yoga and spirituality to be accessible to the world through video. Big Happy Day creates online video campaigns and provides daily video coverage of events within the world of LOHAS, specifically with an emphasis on Yoga and Kirtan. The focus of the content, whatever it may be, spreads the message of yoga, health and awareness while using a conscious media model that connects likeminded companies with teachers, artists and charities within the community.


123 Responses to “S#!T Bhakti Yogis Say.”

  1. DaveTelf says:

    haha this video totally transported me deep into the bhav brah…

  2. Don't you mean to title this: "S#!t Shaktifest junkies say?" That would be more accurate.

  3. Scott says:

    Totally agree with Catherine

  4. Scott says:

    Me thinks you(Luber) dost protest too much…


    A classical example of overgeneric Hare Krishna jargon. The equivalent of “Hey”, “Hello”, “Have a nice day”, “Good night”,etc. Bears a semblance to the way the Smurfs use the noun “smurf” and the verb “smurfing”, though not as widely applicable.

    Maybe the better mantra at Shakti,Bhakti fest, could be Light a Bowl, Light a Bowl

  5. Jill says:

    Too many "Bhakti yogis" I meet delegate and deflect the problems they're going through to the presence (or lack thereof) to a certain deity in their life. And because its so convenient to do this, there's a huge lack of responsibility for participation in circumstance… There's a new term for this because its becoming so rampant. Its called "spiritual bypassing." Check it out y'all.

  6. deleted1588147 says:

    It might mean something if "bhakti" was, indeed, what all those people who think they're practicing were actually doing so. Alas, they're just another bunch of something-yoga wallahs. Their fix of choice, the word "bhakti." And it truly is only the "word" bhakti. Anyone who had respect for bhakti or any idea what it truly encompassed would not find such a low-rent "send-up" so amusing.

    Unfortunately it looks like America is about to send bhakti yoga down the same shitty road that every other form of yoga has been sent down, so that the idiots, wannabe's, and nobodies can all jump on board and call themselves something. What a mess of a country….

  7. Eva says:

    This is wonderfully fun & funny! In my experience, levity & playfulness are important parts of a spiritual life & I deeply appreciate the laughs this gave me! Shakti Fest was a deep, healing, joyful & earnest celebration of God, and I'm grateful to gather with beloveds in communal devotion. The fact we can poke fun at ourselves is healthy. THANK YOU!! – Eva Clay

  8. Zach L says:

    This thread is absolutely full of so much insanity and self righteous panting. The video is a joke and is actually quite fun. It's called humor. If you can't laugh at yourself then you're off to a bad start on your spiritual practice.

    In addition, I find some of these replies so offensive – they virtually are putting down some of the people who attend Shakti Fest. They are many scholarly and truly devoted Vaishnavs, Shaktas and Shivites who attend this gathering and this rash of judgement that is coming from the replies here are simply uninformed. Judgement gets you nowhere. Just laugh and be playful. To each their own yoga. If this video isn't for you – then cool, just move on. We can all love and respect each other in whatever form of devotion is being expressed.

  9. shaydewey says:

    We all need to take a deep breath here. Bhaktifst/Shaktifest is an event of love and devotion, I attended, it was great. Radhanath Swami who attends the September Bhakti Fest in service to us all says this about bhakti:
    1.Most simply, bhakti refers to the common religious devotion that is held in the heart of a devoted person of any spiritual faith.
    2.Bhakti can also refer to a practice of yoga (Bhakti-yoga), a spiritual discipline meant to bring one to a state of pure love of God.
    3.More specifically, the term Bhakti can refer to the devotional interpretation of Vedanta. Vedanta is the most popular of India’s six classical schools of philosophy and the primary influence in Hinduism.
    4.Bhakti also is used to refer to a trend within the history of Indian spirituality – the Bhakti Movement.
    5.Finally, the word Bhakti refers to the perfected state of consciousness – exclusive and continuous love of God, the natural condition of the soul; eternal, enlightened bliss.

  10. shaydewey says:

    So let's please show some love here, and by no means is bhakti restrictive or exclusive, everyone can join. My understanding is that Sri Krishna Chaitanya brought us kirtan so that EVERYONE can have access to the mantras, even "so that the idiots, wannabe's, and nobodies can all jump on board " and that is a good thing.

  11. Frank Marino says:

    Thank you, Zach – well said!

  12. Frank Marino says:

    Thank you, Zach L – well said!

  13. erica says:

    thank you for this absolutely HILARIOUS video. and for those who are taking it "personally" need to sit down and chant another 108

  14. Zach L says:

    Oh boy. Don't engage with Braja above. Never argue with a well educated Gaudiya Vaishnav, they have a Gita or Srimad Bhagavatam quote for anything they want to defend and they will school you pretty much all the time. Such wonderful books and a wonderful tradition. I personally choose to have good association with people who can laugh at themselves and don't take it too seriously to the point of righteous fanaticism. Passion (not in the rajas form) and conviction is great but not to the point of having no original point of view that stems from your own mind and heart.

  15. While everyone is keen to defend this as a "parody" or as "irreverent" humor, or claim that, in the process of sankirtan, anyone and everyone can do or say anything, I'd like to see something substantial in support of that. If you want to speak of bhakti, then refer to Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu, wherein Rupa Goswami outlines the various rasas, or mellows, one of which is humor. There is nothing inherent in the process of bhakti where irreverence is emphasized or encouraged or practiced. Please don't defend the unrefined senses and their rampant insistence on having their way: bhakti is a process, as outlined in the Gita also, as a refinement of the senses, and Sri Upadesamrita begins with the tongue. I'm reminded of how Raghunatha Dasa Goswami, while in meditation, laughed at the memory of a pastime, and as he did so, a Vaisnava walked by. Seeing no reason for Goswami's laughter, he assumed Goswami was laughing at him. He took offense. Goswami was mortified that someone had taken offense at something that was not even related to them: imagine his response to irreverence or parody, or what passes as low-rent humor? Call me a purist? I doubt that very much—far from it, and I have an irreverent humor that I love. But not at the expense of the bhakti process or its practitioners, thanks…

  16. paul says:

    that guy at ~1:11 has a tattoo that looks like v. 3 of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's Siksastakam http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siksastakam ( http://sanskritdocuments.org/all_sa/shiksha_sa.ht… for the devanagari), which I quote in full below for the conversations' sake (mainly v. 2); Mr. Tattoo looks like a tool to me still (and probalby will for some time as I've conditioned myself for some time to think this way), I am glad for him, and to have looked him up!

    1. Glory to the Sri Krishna sankirtana, which cleanses the heart of all the dust accumulated for years and extinguishes the fire of conditional life, of repeated birth and death. This sankirtana movement is the prime benediction for humanity at large because it spreads the rays of the benediction moon. It is the life of all transcendental knowledge. It increases the ocean of transcendental bliss, and it enables us to fully taste the nectar for which we are always anxious.

    2. O my Lord, Your holy name alone can render all benediction to living beings, and thus You have hundreds and millions of names like Krishna and Govinda. In these transcendental names You have invested all Your transcendental energies. There are not even hard and fast rules for chanting these names. O my Lord, out of kindness You enable us to easily approach You by chanting Your holy names, but I am so unfortunate that I have no attraction for them.

    3. One should chant the holy name of the Lord in a humble state of mind, thinking oneself lower than the straw in the street; one should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all sense of false prestige, and ready to offer all respect to others. In such a state of mind one can chant the holy name of the Lord constantly.

    4. O almighty Lord, I have no desire to accumulate wealth, nor do I desire beautiful women, nor do I want any number of followers. I only want Your causeless devotional service birth after birth.

    5. O son of Maharaja Nanda (Krishna), I am Your eternal servitor, yet somehow or other I have fallen into the ocean of birth and death. Please pick me up from this ocean of death and place me as one of the atoms of Your lotus feet.

    6. O my Lord, when will my eyes be decorated with tears of love flowing constantly when I chant Your holy name? When will my voice choke up, and when will the hairs on my body stand on end at the recitation of Your name?

    7. O Govinda! Feeling Your separation, I am considering a moment to be like twelve years or more. Tears are flowing from my eyes like torrents of rain, and I am feeling all vacant in the world in Your absence.

    8. I know no one but Krishna as my Lord, and He shall remain so even if He handles me roughly in His embrace or makes me brokenhearted by not being present before me. He is completely free to do anything and everything, for He is always my worshipful Lord unconditionally.

    9. If anyone recites or hears these eight verses of instruction by Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, his ecstatic love and devotion for Krsna increases day by day.

  17. shaydewey says:

    And btw much respect to both Catherine and Braja's writing on Elephant Journal, I always enjoy reading the writing they do about the Gita.

  18. Kitzie Stern says:

    Those of us who attended Shakti Fest recognize this video for what it is … a hilarious parody of the weekend. What a treat it was to see our favorite kirtan wallahs having fun with Kasey, who is beloved in this community. Is it pure bhakti? Probably not. Does it bring more people to God? Probably yes — and isn’t that the point? The path to Spirit is joyful, and full of play — well expressed by Kasey’s videos of the whole weekend.

    Thanks, Kasey. I’ve enjoyed them all. Hari bol.

  19. Ali Dawn says:

    Maybe I am simple, but maybe the world could use a bit of simplicity…Love one, Love all. Smile and laugh if you think its funny. Forgive if you feel its offensive. Have compassion. Breath.
    We are all brothers and sisters here. We are all brothers and sisters here. We are all brothers and sister here.

  20. Marita says:

    I enjoyed the video… people were having fun. We all could be doing something better with our time (including me), than arguing with people online, people who in another time and place would likely all be chanting in bliss next to one another. On that note, Hari Bol, light a bowl, pass a bowl or put it in your pipe and smoke it… either way Ram loves only love, he who knows this, can know.

  21. love you… be love, breath love, forgive, and Remember, remember to remember… laugh, play, Pray…. be true, be the warrior, Do my work, stay on path, be the priest, the priestess, The Angel that you are. Be reverent….. and remember, Remember every moment our Divine Essence is our True Nature.. Nurture and cultivate that seed of Light in our hearts, that God lives within and without. Divine mother, Divine Father… i thank you, I love you. that is what i am left from this brilliant weekend. It brings me great joy to laugh and play with each of you… THANK YOU KASEY AND BIG HAPPY DAY for spreading the love! Jai ma! Radhe Radhe! Hare Krishna! Ram Ram Ram….Sita Ram…..! Sham!

  22. Micheline Berry says:

    Because I can not say it any better… “Our lives are not as limited as we think they are; the world is a wonderfully weird place; consensual reality is significantly flawed; no institution can be trusted, but love does work; all things are possible; and we all could be happy and fulfilled if we only had the guts to be truly free and the wisdom to shrink our egos and quit taking ourselves so damn seriously.” ― Tom Robbins

    BTW… For what it is worth, I taught a class on Friday at said festival which was one of the most profound of my 16 year teaching career, witnessing myself and my students break open in a spontaneous, direct collective moment of fierce grace… dare I say "Bhakti".

    Wax on… Wax off…

  23. Scott says:

    Thank you Braja and Catherine for you Wise, Insightful commentary……

  24. bo forbes says:

    If a great part of bhakti yoga involves "heart to heart dialogue," as one commentator said above, then where is the "heart" in this dialogue? Part of our spiritual practice is embodied in the way we communicate with one another. Is it really necessary to point out to others how intellectually inadequate you feel they are and how superior you feel in comparison? The dialogue above in many places seems to bump right up against the boundaries of ahimsa- and in my opinion, disavows the very practice of bhakti.

  25. zoekors says:

    Thank you, Micheline, for the Tom Robbins wisdom. Spot on. And yes, well said, Bo. "The more one judges, the less one loves." —Balzac

  26. Shakti Bhakti says:

    I am a kirtan junkie and Kasey I enjoyed your spoof it made me chuckle :)

  27. Scott says:

    When I attended, Shakti/Bhakti fest last year attended a yoga class, a fellow yogi sets up beside me and with extreme delight proceeds to expound his joy at all the beautiful, scantily clad women at the festival…little did he know I was enjoying some eye candy myself..HIM. I know when I object to a comment I make, especially by one far more educated in the subject. I.e. Braja and Catherine, there must be grain of truth to it! AllCatherine was saying is that a more fitting title to the video may have been Shit Shatki festival goers say!

  28. yogijulian says:

    kasey luber this is another really fun, sweet installment in your continuing efforts to expose more people to the practices you love. your sincerity and lovability is evident in how many people you consistently get to participate spontaneously in creating these segments…. your hard work and quick turn around on this material evidences a wonderfully self-motivated temperament with multiple mad skills.

    the teachers who's livelihood depends on being exposed to the potential students who are intrigued by the glimpse you give and the community that enjoys seeing itself reflected and celebrated are all i am sure deeply grateful for all you do.

    i never thought i would see the day when the same fundemantalist trolls would be attacking your innocuous video about shaktifest as come at me regarding my controversial articles about integrated spirituality!

    welcome to the club?

  29. scott says:

    Here's the thing, The video was supposed to be a joke…But the punchline missed the mark!

  30. bo forbes says:

    I was curious about Braja's creative interpretation of how dialogue is meant to ensue in bhakti yoga (i.e. relating one way to 'superiors,' another to 'equals,' and a third way to those with less knowledge). So I asked one of the world's authorities on bhakti yoga, Edwin Bryant (if you haven't already read his books or know his work, he's at http://edwinbryant.org/) to weigh in. He said:

    "Such elitism simply reflects the absence of a genuine spiritual bhakti rasa (taste), as, if we had that, we would not need to feel better about ourselves by peering down our noses at others. I can tell she is a Gaudiya Vaishnava from her langauge and the texts she quotes (Bhakti-Rasamrita Sindu). Gaudiya Vaishnavism stems from Caitanya Mahaprabhu in the 16th century (the tradition considers him an incarnationof Krishna). However, he only wrote 8 verses himself, the massive corpus of the Gaudiya theological canon being written by his disciples (such as the text noted above written by Rupa Gosvami). The full 8 verses, called the Siksastaka (the 8 verses of instruction) can be read at this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siksastaka#Translati….

    "One should chant the holy name of the Lord in a humble state of mind, thinking oneself lower than the straw in the street; one should be more tolerant than a tree, devoid of all sense of false prestige, and ready to offer all respect to others. In such a state of mind one can chant the holy name of the Lord constantly." Siksastaka, verse 3

    I think that about sums up what spiritual discourse can be like.

  31. bo forbes says:

    And to be clear, the final sentence above was mine, not Edwin's.

  32. Joey Lugassy says:

    Ahhh earnestness… A very dangerous thing in my view. I recently hugged someone, apparently on the wrong side, and he stopped me to tell me the right way to hug, and that by hugging on the left side (or was it the right side?), I wasn't touching heart to heart. But the heart he was referring to is just an organ and my "heart" (the seat of my love) in reality was touching his "heart". The explanation and redirecting me actually stopped the flow of the hug. How ironic and silly. Too much earnestness is what creates 'us and them' think, excommunications, dogma and even "fatwas" condemning someone to execution. Salmon Rushdie and the editor, Roger Köppel, for reprinting the Mohammad cartoons both disturbingly come to mind. And while I'm certainly not suggesting that Braja is implying this, and she seems very "learned", I smell the seed of that kind of anger and intolerance in her writing. If I could just put this out there – Maybe by all of us saying these silly things that we hear over and over, and yes to the point where it has no meaning and begins to be destroyed, maybe this puts light on it and maybe we think about what we're saying with a little more effort and feeling? Yes, sardonic play sometimes has it's place. I think the reason this video was even created is because we recognize the very things that Braja is saying. So we laugh at ourselves doing that very thing. For instance, how can I say "be in the bhav" in a sing-song flippant manner after seeing this video? We're ALL Bozos on this bus but we're pointed in the right direction. Compassion, patience and a little levity can be our gasoline. Some will come away from these festivals as if they went to a rock concert. What's wrong with that? Some of my best memories and biggest times of inspiration came from rock concerts. Some will come away with a profound sense of inquiry and go deeper. Good for them. No one has the right to assume what bhakti or yoga practice means to others or how it changed their lives from what they might be doing instead. In the end, bhakti just means Love. You can wax and talk about it until the sacred cows come home but bhakti, bhav, shakti, Jai Ma, Jai Shri Krishna means nothing more or less than Love. It's the end message of all religion and philosophy. Not all can be so smart as to learn all the scriptures and their myriad meanings but all can access Love. Shakti Fest was full of that. Peace to all! Life to all! Love to all!!!!"

    -Joey Lugassy

  33. Dedee says:

    None of this matters.

  34. doug says:

    My wife and I love to chant the divine names and do so daily. But this video, in spite of it's attempt to be humorous, reminded us of why we're glad we didn't attend Shaktifest. Last September we attended Bhaktifest and in spite of the bliss of singing all those kirtan songs, we were taken aback by the many displays of rudeness, narcissism, and inconsiderateness. Common courtesy was said to be the key to Shangrila. Common courtesy and emotional maturity were lacking at last year's Bhaktifest.

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