Swami Premodaya: Don’t read this

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Occasionally, I run across something so distasteful to me that I feel swami premodayacompelled to mention it. Swami Premodaya would be such a something. Like his full name (Bodhisattva Shree Swami Premodaya), I found his website pretentious and primarily concerned with portraying what an amazing and accomplished individual he is. The site even proclaimed Premodaya had, “Lived and worked in 6 different states, including America’s 3 largest cities; bought and sold 2 homes”!

However, the real highlights included:

  • Spending a night at Premodaya’s house for a personal retreat: $150, or spend three-months at his house for $8999. Compare that to the $50/month Richard Rose charged me to live on his farm.
  • 13 two-hour classes for the “Beyond Self training program:” $1,395
  • The “All-Day Workshop” (4.5 hours): $125
  • Financial Skills For Spiritual Seekers: $3500!
  • Private sessions: $300 an hour (2016 price increased to $300 for 35 minutes!). If you can’t afford that, try his son Val for $100 an hour (Wait! 2016 price increased to $144 for 50 minutes).
  • and just in case you haven’t paid enough… there is a donation page.

No need to say any more.

The official Bodhisattva Shree Swami Premodaya webpage was TheBodhiCenter.net, but has pivoted to the more impressive sounding International Centers of Divine Awakening. You will find the website and the Swami looking very polished these days.

17 thoughts on “Swami Premodaya: Don’t read this”

  1. Hi,

    Thank you for this website and the work you do.

    Looking at his website, I was unclear — did you see how much he charges for the satsangs he does twice weekly?

  2. defrauded by either son or father on expensive item. Keep my item and couldn’t return it.
    Scam Artist. He proclaims to be Guru. Jesus Christ is the Only way to Eternal Salvation! Cult and brainwashing. Beware!

    1. Whether or not he is an actual guru, doesn’t mean that Jesus was/is the only great teacher. Humans have created ridiculous type casts out of every teacher. It is us who have to get clear and making claims that only one person or one way is acceptable is an ugly thing to do to your fellow man.

  3. Hi Shawn-

    It looks like there’s no fee for his “Satsangs” on Mondays & Saturdays — why don’t you ask him why he charges 9 grand to stay with him for 3 months, vs. the 150 bucks richard rose would’ve charged?

    Keep up the good work!

  4. Apparently, Rich Archer from Batgap.com doesn’t research who he interviews for his You Tube videos
    or else(in the interests of keeping the discourse more civil) he’d give this guy the third degree for those outrageous prices he charges

  5. Wow, you really missed the mark on this one… Here is someone who twice weekly offers satsang for free and works with those who need help. Regarding charging for sessions: do you think therapists, social workers, and doctors should not be compensated for their training & expertise?

    I suggest you and Kwagmyre take a good hard look at your ‘poverty consciousness’ (I don’t always love new age terminology, but this one seems appropriate…) — in fact, go ahead and talk to this guy at one of his free satsangs before writing such extraordinarily judgmental things.

    Blessings on your path.

  6. Shawn seems more on the up & up than the swami(s)… What’s wrong with being wary of exorbitant rates? Granted, it could be something as simple & innocent as an over-estimation by someone as to the market value of their “product” (which would call into question the wisdom being offered in the financial skills course).
    But just based on the prices of the courses & retreats, it wreaks of financial exploitation, in a field where financial exploitation is RAMPANT. Spiritual advisors are distinct from therapists, social workers, & doctors in this regard (the latter ALL of whom are licensed, btw, and they are licensed in hopes of avoiding exploitation of people in need by at least ascertaining a minimal level of competence in their respective fields).
    Shawn is doing something valuable in posting, & if the swamis provided a viable spiritual service, they would appreciate & certainly understand the reason for Shawn’s skepticism. It’s not up to Shawn to prove the value of the services being sold, I don’t see why anyone would place this onus on him, unless they were feeling defensive of the swamis for some reason. We could use more journalists like Shawn.

  7. Most of his fees seem reasonable. If you want to make a fair evaluation, you should focus on the quality of his services. In three years, only one complaint was posted. If he was really a scam artist, there would have been more.

  8. It is not fair to criticize this mans offer of $150 for a night in his home with the $50 Richard Rose offered you for a month on his farm because Richard Rose did NOT offer that service to the general public, as this man has done. You seem to be hung-up on the monterary price of things, and not on the value of the services rendered.

  9. They should call Swami Premodaya “Jewelry Guru!” Guy has more jewelry than the Navajo Nation.
    Guessing after seeing all of his videos and photographs of him wearing his Mr. T starter kit of Native American Jewelry and Turquoise rings on every finger…he has to charge 9,000 for a day retreat to pay for his addiction of jewelry! The man seems like a con artist with his guru BS. 501c to cover for his lavish lifestyle. Suckers everywhere waiting to buy his charm and snake oil.

    1. It’s funny how people reveal themselves with every post.

      What’s wrong with disagreeing and moving on, knowing this guy may not be for you but other people may be benefitting? Have you ever even talked to this guy? In your absolute, self-admitted ignorance, your incredibly self-righteous, spiritual-policing is truly extraordinary. What, aside from negativity, judgement, and criticism — based on nothing but your uninformed opinions — is it that you have to offer the rest of us? Is it your giant brain that’s going to save the rest of us ignorant, gullible fools from some guy who only offers help to those people who *gasp* actually ASK FOR IT. And he has the audacity to CHARGE FOR HIS WORK. Ohmigod. The SCANDAL!!

      Whether you like this Guru guy or not, perhaps try working hard enough to offer something more to humanity than your petty, jealous sniping — until that time, shut up and let the adults talk, you’re not needed.

  10. I came across this post and had to comment. I took the 13 week course from Swami many years ago. Let me assure you the sheer amount of time, in depth materials, emotional work and support you get from the course is worth every dollar. It is very reasonably priced for the knowledge you gain and the care that is taken. It would be hard to find such a long detailed course elsewhere for less money. The Bodhi Center offered courses and services – that’s how they make money to exist. A temple charges tons of money to attend high holy services (my old temple did charge what felt like high prices) yet that is deemed ok by society. Not sure what your beef is with Swami but you seem to have never met him. He is a very wise man. I’m not one of his devout ‘followers’ and I don’t love calling anyone a guru for that matter. But he helped me in a difficult time and I met many others who truly benefitted from his offerings. If you find someone willing to give all their time and knowledge for free that’s great but I’ve never met anyone like that yet.

  11. You just have to read the ridiculous name that this guy has given himself and you don’t need to go any further!
    In Buddhism, no one is given the name ‘Bodhisattva So-and-so’. On the other hand, the fact of associating a Buddhist concept (bodhisattva) with a title of Hindu renouncer, shows that the guy is neither attached to a Buddhist lineage, nor attached to a Hindu lineage!
    In short, a name that is only made to impress and attract the ignorant (who are numerous, as evidenced by the comments on this page)!

  12. Whatever Premodaya was at one time, he is absolutely a cult leader now. I was intimately involved in his organization for more than a decade and I can tell you firsthand that he is dangerous. A classic narcissist, perhaps a sociopath, he now costs an eye watering $1200/hr to speak to in private sessions (which are mandatory for his “disciples”).. his latest Advanced Program is $15,600/pp annually (again mandatory) and that is only ONE of many mandatory programs his students/followers are forced to take or face expulsion and community shunning.

    There are credible allegations of sexual abuse of his male assistants/attendants, so much so that he has forbidden his disciples from speaking to anyone with knowledge of these abuses, upon threat of excommunication and again, shunning.

    “Swami Premodaya” aka Bryan Nathan, aka Max Meszel (his given name that he carefully hides from the world), is a classic spiritual abuser of the most aggregious kind. He has pridefully said many times and in public settings, that “if I weren’t a spiritual teacher (and former psychologist) I would have been a criminal, and a damn good one!” Having witnessed what I did first hand, he is most assuredly both.

    Hoarding cash payments to avoid taxes, fraud-based jewelry sales (that he claims are from his own private collection and therefore imbued with “spiritual power/Guru-Shakti” but are actually ordered en-masse from EBay, marked up a minimum of 30% and then resold to his unsuspecting followers…), the financial abuse is astounding. I witnessed him coerce dozens of his disciples into carrying tens of thousands of dollars in U.S. cash across international borders for him (which they no doubt don’t realize is a felony and punishable by 20 years in prison for each offense)…. he is a fist class con-man and manipulator.

    Whether it’s today or 5 years from now, this whole thing is going to fall down around his ears.

    If you are a disciple of Swami Premodaya’s and reading this, you will no doubt ignore these words, believing his claims that anyone who has left is sick and trying to harm you and ICODA. If you truly believe that, there is nothing I can say. For anyone who may consider there is a real alternative where people who have left have a clearer picture (outside the brainwashing and information control going on inside ICODA) and are scared for people they love who have been left behind. Who does it most serve that Brian has banned you from studying with other teachers, from speaking to anyone who could tell you the truth about him?? You have all witnessed (and often experienced) horrific emotional abuse at his hands and have explained it away as a “Guru Device” or Guru’s Grace… abuse is not Grace.

    Brian himself has told you that he has been diagnosed with Reative Attachment Disorder, not diagnosed until very late in life when it had already heavily formed his mentality. He TOLD YOU that he is unable to experience love. If you look into what RAD really is, it is foundational to personality disorders like narcissism, sociopathy, and psychopathy. Research it for yourselves. He has TOLD you many times who he is… believe him. He IS dangerous.

    Please consider contacting Gangaji, whom he calls his Guru. When presented with the claims he has made about her (ex. that she endorses his Guruship, that he has donated tens of thousands of dollars to her organization), she categorically REJECTED ALL claims Brian has made about her as FALSE. She has now said of him that he is “a very sick man who needs help” — that this “ego trap” for spiritual teachers is real and he has fallen in. Don’t believe me. Write to her directly. Ask your questions. Tell your stories… get the direct insight of a real spiritual teacher who has no horse in this race but to serve honest seekers who come to her for help.

    Lastly, consider reading this article and remember the principle of Occam’s Razor: the simplest explanation tends to be the correct one.

    Premodaya is self-admittedly mentally ill.
    He takes pride in claiming a criminal mentality, lies to and manipulates his disciples constantly, threatens people with hellish after death punishments if they have even a single negative thought about him…. This. Is. Abuse.

    Remember what Neem Karoli Baba, a true Guru and Saint, said to Ram Dass:
    “Love Everyone and TELL THE TRUTH.”

    Brian’s life is no model for those words and never has been.


    And for the love of God, if you have young children, especially adolescent sons, do not let them be alone with him. I’m speaking to the Belgians directly.

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