Fascist Hides Out As Spiritual Guide

From the New York Times:

In Serbia, more details about Mr. Karadzic’s life as a fugitive emerged on Wednesday, with local media saying he had a mistress, regularly visited a local pub called the Madhouse and invented an imaginary family in the United States.

Blic, a Serbian newspaper, reported that Mr. Karadzic, who went by the name Dragan Dabic, had been smitten by an attractive middle-aged woman named Mila, whom he took everywhere. During his time as a fugitive he posed as an alternative medicine and lifestyle guru. Colleagues of Mr. Karadzic who worked with him at the health magazine Healthy Life told Blic that he introduced Mila as his wife and the great love of his life.

If I know nothing else about a person except that he is a spiritual teacher, I am suspicious. By contrast, religious teachers can be held accountable to a religious tradition and religious practices and a religious community. A Modern Orthodox pulpit rabbi, for instance, is accountable to his congregation, to his peers in the Rabbinical Council of America, to the yeshiva and rabbis who ordained him, and to pretty much any Jew who can mount a fact-based attack on his life and work. A spiritual artist such as Marc Gafni can do his own thing. There’s no union for spiritual artists that can expel him for bad behavior.  On the one hand, this allows him freedom to do great things that organization men can not do. The downsides to this approach are also obvious.

I’m a blogger. I am primarily accountable to whom? I’m not a member of an organization. If I worked for CBS News and I made a mistake, CBS News would be held accountable for my behavior and they would have every incentive to make sure I abided by their guidelines. If I’m rude or wrong, who suffers? My reputation suffers but I can still get up and keep blogging the next day if I feel like it.

Marc and I can basically do whatever our conscience allows. I don’t know about Marc, but my conscience is a frighteningly flexible thing, easily fooled. My still small internal voice is all too often too still and too small.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see Amazon.com). My work has been noted in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (Alexander90210.com).
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