I never thought about Deepak Chopra. I always assumed that a New Age spiritual teacher with a world-wide marketing strategy, engaged in promotional synergy with Oprah and offering instructional spiritual CDs on an installment plan, would not have much to say that was serious, about following a spiritual path or living a spiritual life.
Also, Deepak Chopra wears rhinestone -studded glasses. Or are they diamonds? Whichever. The glasses are intended, I imagine, to convey the air of material prosperity that is necessary to market New Age spirituality.
I still don’t know much about Deepak Chopra! So anything I say about him is based entirely on my impression of him as a public figure.
I did not choose to form an impression of Deepak Chopra. Having an impression of Deepak Chopra has been forced upon me. You see and hear and read things about Deepak Chopra all the time, here and there, even if you have no interest in him. He works hard to make himself well-known and to make a big impression on people.
My impression of Deepak Chopra is that he is a huckster in diamond-studded glasses.
One day, minding my own business, having no interest in thinking about Deepak Chopra, I turned on PBS and there he was — wearing rhinestone-studded glasses and peddling his CDs in a live-audience infomercial. Saying something about the amazing mathematical nature of the Universe and showing how this or that profound universal truth leads directly to the idea of buying his new CD set.
On one hand: Deepak Chopra seems like a sincere, earnest, knowledgeable guy. And I guess he’s funding charity work or outreach work or some spiritual foundation, whatever.
Yet, on the other hand: it is an undeniable fact — an unquestionable fact — that a genuine spiritual teacher, a serious, evolved spiritual teacher, would not create a slick, multi-media, world-wide advertising campaign to sell their spiritual knowledge. That’s a fact. So, you have to wonder about Deepak Chopra. Maybe he was a serious spiritual person at one time, I don’t know. He sounds like it, he’s knowledgable and smart. But now he’s just a huckster peddling New Age spirituality.
So then my curiosity was piqued and I looked a little further via google, and this is what leads me to even bother writing about my impression of Deepak Chopra.
Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey have gotten together, they are in cahoots you might say, to peddle subscriptions to an online meditation app with thousands of meditations. And more meditations being added all the time! $8.99 a month. Deepak and Oprah promise to make meditation easy and fun.
This New Age spiritual marketing is not only predatory, but it hinders and makes a mockery of more serious spiritual practice. This is just what people need — people who feel the need for inner peace and connection with self, people who want to quietly turn inward, to meditate, to foster deep connection with themselves and with the cosmos — this is just what people need — to be fiddle-fucking around on their phones, plugged into a meditation app, choosing from thousands of recorded meditations. And more being added every day!
Its diabolically brilliant, really: Solicit people who are looking for a nourishing spiritual practice, people seeking to free themselves from the constant distractions of modern life…………………. solicit these people, and convince them to pay you to subscribe to a constantly-updated computerized distraction.
It’s almost as if Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey are merely pawns, doing the work of evil higher powers intent on yoking humanity to the dead, sub-earthly electronic digital world, a world that exists within the real world like an echo, like a corpse.
Here are three things you do not want in a spiritual teacher:
- someone who wears diamond-studded glasses.
- someone who uses the adjectives “easy” and “fun” to describe meditation.
- someone who is peddling a meditation app. With Oprah.
Also, Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey have this extraordinary picture of themselves that they apparently believe represents them accurately and well.
I don’t get it — it’s looks like the children from Village of the Damned have grown up.
Look at them. I wouldn’t buy a used car from these people, let alone entrust my spiritual development to them.
That’s my impression of Deepak Chopra.