Spiritual Wisdom from an Idiot.

Via elephant journal
on Jul 6, 2011
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“I hate negativity. It’s so toxic. …Now what’s taking that loser Starbucks barista so long to give me my effing triple almond skinny latte in a 10% recycled plastic lined to go cup with a lid that will outlive the next 7 generations?! I have to get outta this Whole Foods parking lot n’SUV my way over to yoga class, goddamnit.”

Let’s all make fun of spiritual materialists (you know, elephant readers & writers & me).

editor’s mean introduction: I love how yoga teachers who’ve graduated from two week teacher trainings at their local McYoga studio suddenly feel empowered to open their trite, clichéd adolescent hearts all over my mindstream while I’m captive in their “class,” “learning” “yoga” from them.

This article goes out to all you spiritual-lite yoga teacher wannabes out there. It also goes out to all the amateur-hour shrinks without degrees who send articles of second-hand impersonal wisdom to elephant.

Am I offending 90% of our idiot readers? Good. Go find another blog to read for free. This blog is about genuine spiritual wisdom.

We don’t even like the word “spiritual.” It’s about life—you know, what happens when your trust fund runs out.

Are you smug like me? Please add your favorite fake BS shallow wisdom pet peeve in comments! ~ W.

Warning: offensive, totally un-yogic swear words below. Anger is not yoga-appropriate: suppress it.

Yadayadayadayadayadayadayadayadayada.” ~ The Dalai Lama/Patanjali/Gandhi/Martin Luther King/Rumi/Kahlil Gibrain/Mary Oliver/Deepak Chopra/Byron Katie

One thing’s true in this life, we all change. Change is the only constant.

Can’t we all get along? Co-exist? I bow to your light, you bow to mine, sorry I have to go before savasana but I forgot to turn off my iPhone before class and I got a text from Mercedes—Groupon has a deal on American Apparel, holla!

I love light and happiness, it’s good for my heart, which opens sometimes after I’ve healed from painful things. But pain is good! And good isn’t good or bad, bad is sometimes good. PS: don’t you hate it when waiters say “no problem” after they bring you a fourth Malibu on the Rocks? I know it’s no problem: I’m paying.

That reminds me: one time, I went through some painful things—Whole Foods was out of Quinoa again and this douchebag was annoying everyone [see Whole Foods Parking Lot video, below]—and then I realized later on that I was a better person because of it. Not better—I was more myself. My Self. Two words, capitalizing “Self.” By that I mean the higher Self, which I have no idea about, but it’s not the lowercase self shit I go through every day—like two hours ago when I was yelling at my girlfriend/boyfriend and hitting the dashboard with my backpack/purse and they were so un-understanding, they stormed off saying I was being Self-ish. She/he better text me back soon and apologize.

Remember to breathe when the going gets tough. Life is here to point out where we’re stuck. So breathe. Breathing is healthy. Particularly breathing in and out, it’s so good for you.

And stay hydrated: buy water from volcanoes in the Pacific, because water shipped halfway around the world and then stored in plastic? That’s just crazy.

Finally, exercise is good—but it’s not just for the body, it helps us work through yer four Malibus from last night—and, you know, be present and remember that our lives are full of abundance and all. Why exercise? It’s good for your skin—inside and out. I like to run, but it’s a lot of work. Still, the outfits look killer. I like to climb, but it’s sooo tiring, so I just hang at the base. I like yoga, of course—you get to walk around with your mat and there are so many hotties. I like the idea of bicycling—that’s why I bought a bike. It’s in my garage, squeezed in the back behind my X5 that daddy bought me, knowing full-well I wanted a SILVER FUCKING LEXUS. Such a loser.

Now let me talk about sex. I haven’t !(#>#<@?!:! properly ever, probably. But I do watch porn, and fantasize sometimes. I did have a very deeply feeling girlfriend/boyfriend recently, but they still haven’t texted me back and I’ve looked at their Facebook Wall and they’ve added three friends, one of whom is a girl/boy who looks hot. So that’s bullshit. But bullshit is like fertilizer: I can use that pain instead of rejecting it—thanks to this book by Pema Chodron that I read the back cover of (I didn’t buy it, I scanned the barcode and got it 30% off on Amazon, it’s in the mail).

I love children. And flowers. And Disney—early Disney. Skunks in particular, as in Bambi, are cute, because you can’t smell them when they’re in a movie. That said, as a social media expert (I’m following lots of celebs), I don’t go outside much—but you should, it’s Divine with a capitol D—which is another way of saying God, only cooler.

Do one thing a day that scares me.

Yoga: yoga is so important. It’s, like, saved my life. Yoga means unions, but rich people can go, too, it’s open to everybody. It’s very embracing of diversity. Yoga teaches you to embrace everyone and open with love and respect. The best is the yoga festivals, where you can go and study with the great teachers, party at night, get laid. Hat trick. Back home, it’s annoying: sometimes the classes are super full of idiots using a first class free coupon, and you have to be right next to all sorts of randos. Good thing I have a wiiiide Manduka mat—it’s what Lady Gaga uses. Totally.

Hipsters: hipsters are into whatever’s cool, which isn’t hipsters, so they all deny being hipsters. They have great taste, which is anything that’s uncool: fanny packs, mullets, cut off jean shorts for guys, whatever. Tip: you can buy cool glasses in Republican-owned (one of daddy’s golf friends is on the board), non-unionized Urban Outfitters. I want hipster friends like the ones I see at Coachella, which I’ve done since I was 15, but when I’m lonely I remember that being down and broken is good, for some reason. That’s key.

Religion is okay, if you just grab the stuff that works—forget the weird stuff.

Life is full of setbacks. That’s what my Lulu tote bag says, and I know from personal experience it’s true. Suffering. People are suffering all over. People suffered to make your laptop over in Africa and China. Over here, my one friend bought Apple Care when she got her display and her Mac Air, but it only covered her Mac Air, and she was pissed. That’s where you see suffering is all interconnected. And that’s the kind of bullshit yoga directly addresses.

Breathe deeply.

The main thing is, and this is totally serious, to remember to laugh at yourself. For instance, this article is about you. You’re an idiot. So join me and laugh at yourself.

Me, I’m the real deal: I’ve read, like, at least five movies on Netflix streaming that were documentaries, and once the recommendation function told me to watch Food Inc., with Jamie Oliver, who did that dolphins movie about eating McDonalds in the 80s, the one about climate change n’shit.

Here’s more Lulu wisdom, from the most famous yoga sutra of modern times. Sutra is a Native American term for “tote bag.”

In conclusion, I’d like to quote from that nice old Buddhist woman:

“When things fall apart.” ~ Pema Chodron

That’s from the cover. Like I said, it’s arriving in the mail later on from Amazon.

PS: I have a flattering purple fair labor organic OM tee shirt, with great texture, which I got on sale via an ad on elephantjournal.com. Holla!


Related Bonus vids:



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111 Responses to “Spiritual Wisdom from an Idiot.”

  1. Lakshmi says:

    Hilarious!..and unfortunately an accurate depiction of many.

  2. brandi says:

    you forgot to say 'namaste' at the end 😉

  3. Ang says:

    “Sutra is a Native American term for “tote bag.” – Oh E.J. – I think I just fell a little more in love with you….

    I would have liked to see the spiritual tramp stamp peeking out from $150 yoga pants get a shout out, but maybe I’m just being Self-ish

  4. Jessica says:

    Stick with editing. This has been done before by better and more creative writers.

  5. elephantjournal says:

    Wow. I'm only editing, selling ads, managing staff, dealing with emails, twitter, facebook, endless meetings…out of service to something that inspires me: bringing together those who can work and play to reduce suffering, have fun waking up as a community. Writing's what I love.

    So thanks for that—douchebag blindside punches is obviously a forté of yours, so it's too bad the world's already full of cowardly jerks. Still, you might have to find a new career path—say, being sweet? ~ Waylon

  6. Jen says:

    I heart you, Waylon. This is fucking classic!

  7. Katherine says:

    blech. really?

  8. linda buzogany says:

    mala beads worn as an accessory.

  9. Aaron Bacchi says:

    dude. . .I fuckin love you

  10. John R says:

    I love to hear and feel the rants of an man who is going with the flow of his rants…now if all humans would only flow with theirs we would all be a little better for them/it…so everyone just go with the flow and you find you are were you need to be…Namaste

  11. Bethany Eanes says:

    "For instance, this article is about you. You’re an idiot. So join me and laugh at yourself." Okay, I'll do it. I'm laughing.

    "Love & Light" – B

  12. CaseyCapshaw says:

    ha ha, jeez Way, having a rough day? 🙂 Let it out brother!

  13. Cindy says:

    wish i wrote this.

  14. Joy says:

    ha! Waylon that reaction is even more entertaining then the article above (and that got me laughing!) Breathe deelply and laugh at yourself!

  15. Susan says:

    "The light in me salutes the light in you"… the saying dejour at McYoga closest to my house…

    I'm reading this at my office squeezing in a break from corporate bullshit….what a scream…. Thanks Waylon, you've given me a new evil delight, actually listening to this stuff!

  16. Alexis says:

    "Sutra is a Native American term for “tote bag.”"
    Simply amazing. Holla!

  17. Laura says:

    I'm unclear how judging others gets you closer to "genuine spiritual wisdom."

  18. Ari Pliskin says:

    The best thing about yoga festivals: how many other places could you find a scene that is spiritual enough that you don't feel guilty for social climbing, but with people who are fit, hip and young enough that it is still fun?

  19. Stephanie says:

    You had me at, "Namaste, Bitches!" ROTF ~ LMFAO!!! Now, for my "piss-me-off": The 20-something "spiritual life coach" I interacted with recently who cooly pointed out to me that my ego was in my way, but …for $500 AN HOUR, she could help me "re-program my beliefs"! Seriously?? Bitch, you're NOT a neuro-surgeon!

  20. yogiclarebear says:

    i really do like that bambi skunk though.

  21. elephantjournal says:

    I may not have delivered, but I had to try. ~ W.

  22. elephantjournal says:

    Yoga people tend to think of judging as a bad thing. But in the Buddhist tradition, as well as common sense, it's got a long, healthy, humble tradition. For instance, you naturally judge that eating an organic, local apple off the tree might be good for you. That smoking crack might not be good. That opening the window for fresh air might be good. That leaving the car running more than a few minutes might not be.

    These aren't moral judgments. But when it comes to the spiritual path, there's the notion of spiritual materialism. Sometimes, things we think of as spiritual are anything but. For instance, mixing spiritual traditions, while fine morally, can amount to cultural appropriation, and confuse our personal path. Or being kind to someone, say your 40 year old son who's depressed and attached to you, his hypothetical mama, and won't move out of the house…isn't always kind (that's the notion of idiot compassion). Cutting through spiritual materialism requires a few things: an uplifted sense of humor that isn't mean (you're right on). But it also requires that we don't confuse spiritual-lite dilettante-ism with the real thing. There are many teachers, and teachings, that have much to teach. Taking those teachings seriously—in intent if not attitude—is nothing less than vital.

    And so yes, judging can be healthy. Prejudging—you know, prejudice—on the other hand…

  23. elephantjournal says:

    In reference to my reply: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2008/10/cutting-th

  24. drbinder says:

    Hat Trick!

  25. Ben_Ralston says:

    500$ an hour. Jesus, I need to raise my prices…

  26. tea says:

    love and light,namaste must be my peevy thing
    W u r awesomelyawesome

  27. Maria says:

    Absolutely legendary!
    I LOVE it 🙂

  28. elephantjournal says:

    "Am I offending 90% of our idiot readers? Good. Go find another blog to read for free. This blog is about genuine spiritual wisdom." Waylon Lewis gets something off his chest. Are you offended!? (intro + link vai Ben Ralston)
    Cella F: Sincerly Namaste! Laughing at how unbelievably true this is. Fuckin love your honesty!

    Valerie S: THIS WAS AWESOME!

    Alan T: classic. thank you.

  29. Trish says:

    Still dying over Namaste Bitches. Dying. Like peeing my pants.

  30. Kristen says:

    dude, that was soooo raaaaaaddddd, oh by the way, do you like this new bead in my dreadlock? I took it off the stupa in Crestone…they say that shit is an offering, but like so is my trastafari hair…sick…..thanks for burning the fire on pretentious holier than God Selves……lmao!!!! Merci beaucoup!

  31. So great, Way!!! FLMAO! But like I broke a nail typing this comment. My day is now ruined. *kidding*

  32. That blog post rocked my socks. In response to your request, here's a little ditty I wrote about "yogic wisdom":

  33. tapho says:

    I am a love and light person, do yoga, shop at Whole Paycheck and this was priceless! Fucking hysterical! Love it!

  34. elcarg says:

    Guilty ! How did we get here? Thanks for the entertainment. Elephant is blowing up.

  35. caleb says:

    waylon, thank you for this. ha! be sure i’ll be making an introduction next time i see you ’round town. renewed. awesome.

  36. Vero Barnes says:

    "Namaste bitches" that is !! lol ! Great article 🙂

  37. kmh says:

    I think you're awesome and hilarious and unlike Jessica (i suspect) i would say the same thing to your face if i met you (should be basic rule of online commenters).

  38. YesuDas says:

    Or crosses.

  39. YesuDas says:

    Kelly: "*unlived* spirituality"–that hits the nail on the head! It isn't teaching that attracts people, but teachers; if a teacher has really lived the spirituality he/she dishes out, people will profit by it; if not, it doesn't matter how "wise" it all is. As the Quaker Abolitionist John Woolman put it, “All the faithful are not called to the public ministry; but whoever are, are called to minister of that which they have tasted and handled spiritually.”

  40. Joe Sparks says:

    We are all here on this planet together to learn, to care, to share, with each other, let's help each other out. Yoga is a great tool to make that happen. If you can figure out how to do yoga, you are having a good life. If you can notice that and be pleased with whom you are, life is a lot more fun! Besides, one of the best part of yoga class, is hanging out before and after with your yoga buddies.
    No individual human has an actual rational conflict of interest with another human. Those are just feelings.

  41. Yiipppeee says:

    Hahaha sutra=tote bag! Also my fav line. Take heart Waylon that by being in boulder you do just happen to be in the absolute epicenter of people like you’ve described 😉 i have some trustifarian “friends” i’d love to have read this but im afraid they may miss the joke… love the post, hilarious!

  42. elephantjournal says:

    Marilyn Batacan-de Leon Lol!!

    Katherine Grady This is classic. Thank you for the smile.

    Tricia Baird Bliss if there's one thing I can't tolerate, it's intolerance 🙂

    Jane Taylor Simpsons, Lisa …'I a freakin buddhist'…

    Maria Renna I've read this article (funny) but that intro is a hoot! Make mine a triple grande latte, hold the SUV. 🙂

    Amy Blumenreder I think it's important to make fun of things, people, bullshit credos and especially myself first and foremost! It's not wise to take anything too seriously. We all know when things feel good to us or do not. I dislike in-authenticity very much. Just trying to keep it real over here- whatever that means!! Humor trumps everything!!

    Lisa Kean Thank you. I'm glad the Whole Foods parking lot was mentioned. I've had thoughts about it for quite some time. (laughs) Not very relaxed thoughts, but thoughts all the same.

    Nancy LaNasa i hate those shoes.

    Stephanie Geistel
    I'm going to stop reading Elephant Journal articles at this point, because if I've noticed anything — its that the writers/contributors are 100% counter-productive to the accomplishments I'm working toward as a spiritually minded yogi. You… can't achieve happiness by slandering others, by putting young people with positive intentions down and forcing them into categories. There is not room for arrogance, nor condescending banter about young yogi's sharing wisdom, and teacher training is not a walk in the park. This is a trend with Elephant Journal, to poke fun and snub noses when if you carried yoga with you everywhere you'd want nothing but general happiness. Elephant Journal IS EXACTLY who they are pointing fingers at in this article – wannabe spiritually minded individuals that have yet to dedicate themselves to what that actually means. Ps, you're the only website I've ever seen that "charges" for their internet content…. Something that currently has liberal internet-users in uproar on a larger-scale. I am 100% confused about what Elephant Journal stands for, other than looking down their nose at everyone that does "spiritual" "wrong".

    Jessica Muir Denorio We're all human, no matter *how* spiritual we claim our path is, and I think humor does trump everthing. Besides, how spiritual can you be if you cannot laugh at yourself? Claiming EJ is being judgemental, while judging the content of EJ (especially when there are so many different contributing articles by different people) is kinda weird, imo. I am an aspiring yogini, and I can't get enough EJ!! LOVE IT.

    joe illingworth
    ‎@stephanie – i am a very judgmental person and don't care to be otherwise. judgment is what keep me from getting involved with people who only want to do me harm, from eating the wrong foods that would make me unhealthy and from making dec…isions that would otherwise be detrimental to my well-being and well-intentioned plans. that being said, you sound exactly like the people that this article is making fun of and your attitude towards it confirms my prejudice that you wouldn't know enlightenment if it slapped you in the face. stop taking yourself so seriously and maybe someone else will start to.

    Stephanie Geistel I see a very distinct difference between polite humor and a pretentious jab at the people dedicated to something greater than themselves. It's bullying…. And worth defending, and speaking up about, I might add.

    I wont argue that I am who this article is making fun of, and slandering, and undermining… And offending.
    4 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 1 personLoading…

  43. elephantjournal says:

    Tara Skye Goldin It is important not to take ourselves too seriously. That is the point of this article. Lighten up!

    Belinda B. Barnes Stephanie, you need a really great roll in the hay! Lighten up!

    William Auclair why do you think they call yo childish?

    Maui Porter Stephanie, many many sites charge for content, and at *considerably* higher rates. If you don't charge for your stuff, you don't stay in business, and news sites whose paper editions are crumbling and department budgets being slashed due to declining ad revenues are finding they need to charge. The idea that everything should be free to you (but you get paid) is called Raging Entitlement, viz. corporate CEOs.

    Erin Denis
    ‎@ Joe, elephantjournal.com and anybody else who promotes this cynical view on the life and values which I hold so dear to my heart and soul. Stop bitching about the problems and do something to fix all these things that you believe are wro…ng. These one-sided arguments and slanderous articles have to stop. What do you all stand for? If you are really full of all these convictions and truly believe that it's all bullshit, do something to help change it! Is that just not interesting enough. Does Elephant Journal really believe that we need more negativity in our lives? We get enough of this everywhere else we look. These editors and writers need to stop taking their positions for granted. You have been blessed with a great leadership and very influential position. Why not write articles on what we can all do to come together and fix these "problems" that you persist on talking about?

    In love, light and deep gratitude,

    Erin Denis

    William Auclair adios elephant asses

    Stephanie Geistel ‎@Belinda, what I call for is respect for my lifestyle. But thank you very much for your opinion of what I need.

    Belinda B You are so uptight-when was the last time you laughed or had crazy fun? Just from your typed words I see someone locked in a cage of stuffy boring bla – someone afraid to let loose. It's good to vent sometimes. 😉

    ps … Peace – you are are likely a very nice person 😉 I don't mean to make you feel bad – just thought I'd suggest having some fun – hope your week is wonderful

    Sandi Strong Vibram shoes ROCK!!!!

    Bill Miller Lmt In 2 days no one will even remember all this so just lighten the hell up!!
    Everyones experience is simply their own and if you need to defend the act of laughing at yourself, well what does that say? That your enlightenment is better than mine? well okay but oh well…

    Zane Edwards PERFECT after getting passed while driving 65 on Hwy 36 by a freakin' Prius with a Coexist bumper sticker. Ass.

  44. elephantjournal says:

    elephantjournal.com: Sorry, been working with staff all afternoon, missed this rather enthusiastic thread. For those offended, I'd assure you that this article is bringing a yes, rather cutting humor to those of us (and the part within allll of us) who would treat the gifts of spirituality, meditation, yoga, organics, etc…carelessly. It's not making fun of spirituality, meditation, yoga, organics or those who love those things. That's what elephatn's all about, remember! We love "enlightened society."

    Rather, it's just poking fun at ourselves and our tendency to take ourselves too seriously and treat these gifts too carelessly. ~ Waylon

  45. Johnson says:

    Um, as a teacher who graduated from a 2 week McYoga school, I would tell you to kindly get your ass out of my class, That would make you totally hipster with your like-minded friends. Hey, I could start a trend kicking hipster students out of yoga class but then that would kind of make me a hipster among MY friends. Ugh, WWGD ( What Would Guru Do)?

  46. Alex_Prescott says:

    That was like, totally killer, bra. And remember to melt your heart all the way. Like, alllllllllll the way. mmmmmmmmmmmmm

  47. Johnson says:

    P.S. Waylon. Just joking man. I love EJ

  48. Peter says:

    Elephant Journal, you're not getting off that easy! Laura's right, condemning others because they fail to conform to some concept you have of what "serious" spirituality is certainly doesn't bring you closer to "genuine spiritual wisdom." But, turn that sarcasm towards yourself and then you've got something! We're all full of crap. Not 100%, but to varying degrees. I agree with you, "yoga-lites" are pathetic and so very irritating. But for every yoga-lite I condemn in my smug spiritual arrogance I know there is someone who could view me the exact same way. As long as we're not realized, there is a part of us that is a smug little prick that thinks my tradition is better, my guru is more realized, my practice is better, etc.. We all do this to some extent. It's called being ignorant. So, Elephant Journal,in your smug spiritual materialism and "cool kid" attitude I judge you to be not as enlightened as me. But can I hangout with you on the playground? Please?

  49. Kavindra says:

    Now I totally <3 you and this site even more. May love and light shine upon your hilarious ass!
    Sutra is a Native American term for “tote bag.” Best. Line. Ever.