Kumare: the Indian-American Borat of Yoga. {Video}

Via Waylon Lewis
on May 19, 2012
get elephant's newsletter

Kumare: New Jersey Indian-American grows out beard, becomes guru, goes all Borat with naive American yoga cult.

A mocumentary that goes to the heart of elephant’s mission: skewering Spiritual Materialism—with a sense of humor, gentleness, and wisdom.

I met Vikram Gandhi at SXSW this year, where we were on a panel together with Seane Corn, hosted by Where is My Guru. He’s as awesome and he seems—that rare sweet fun hip irreverent human being who cares about people without buying into our bullshit.

As guru, his only teaching was “I’m not enlightened. What you see in me is your own goodness or potential.”~ ed.

This is trending on Reddit right now:

“Trailer for ‘Kumare’—a filmmaker spends years pretending to be a spiritural guru from India, and even builds up a following in Arizona, while documenting the entire ordeal.”

This mocumentary won #1 Audience at SXSW 2011:



A documentary about filmmaker Vikram Gandhi who impersonates a wise Indian Guru and builds a following in Arizona. At the height of his popularity, the Guru Kumare must reveal his true identity to his disciples and unveil his greatest teaching of all.


Relephant Bonus:


Also Relephant: how Religion begins.


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


8 Responses to “Kumare: the Indian-American Borat of Yoga. {Video}”

  1. Dace says:

    This is a really good experiment. It also proves how easy it is to feed and teach people conspiracy theories and similar stories many believe today.
    Non critical thinking and worshiping random things and people is a root of deep problems of the modern world.

    Kūmārē is a false prophet but who is the true one?

    It is time to open the eyes and see that we all carry the same divinity and wisdom in our hearts. It is time to stop paying for brainwashing oneself and start doing something valuable and worthy with our time, money and energy.

  2. snowyogi says:

    fantastic! I can't wait to see this!

  3. whythulc says:

    I can't wait to see this doc. Not only does it prove a lot of things about feeding people information, but I think it will also prove something about how a lot of people WANT to believe in something, and even though Kumare was fake, the things he stood for may have had real principles behind them. Can't wait to see it so I can find out what they concluded.

  4. At his showing at the Boulder International Film Festival (BIFF), he mentioned he and his editor cut the film in Boulder.

    I thought his response to a question about whether he misled his students was great. I only remember enough to paraphrase, but he said the whole point of the film was to understand that dynamic between teachers and students and at least he revealed the full truth in the end which many teachers never do. I also found it noteworthy that he was instructing his students to find the inner guru throughout the entire film.

    A great social experiment!

  5. Ollie H. says:

    This is a beautiful film. It teaches us a lot of things, a lot of realizations in life. Can't wait to see this film. Will definitely look forward. Great experiment!

  6. Noella Beechum says:

    Hello there, I discovered your web site by way of Google at the same time as searching for a similar subject, your website came up, it appears to be like great. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.