Speaking Truth After the Fact is Fine /// During the Fact? Even Better

Tell you what. Well, actually, I’ll tell you two things:

  1. I still have a faint hint of that “You Can Count on Me/Shyam Bolo” song stuck in my head from last week.
  2. I’ve got a tiny, sorta harmless, but nonetheless sting-happy, bee in my bonnet about what I perceive to be a lack of genuineness in what appear to be Elena Brower’s constant after-the-fact Truth sessions.

For those who don’t know (we mentioned this yesterday), all-places-at-once yoga sensation, Elena Brower, is really into telling the truth, and proceeds to do this thing where she comes clean on stuff from the past. (You can read about it here, here, here, and watch it here). Little may ye know that we We Babs actually LOVE most of what Elena has to say on the matter, and are generally major fans of just straight up spewing the stuff like it’s going out of style. We’re not soooo keen on calling it “truth,” as that sounds like a word a life coach would use. Instead, we prefer to be guided by the disembodied voice of Ms. Emily Dickinson with regards to these concerns:

“Tell all the truth but tell it slant,
Success in circuit lies,
Too bright for our infirm delight
The truth’s superb surprise;

As lightning to the children eased
With explanation kind,
The truth must dazzle gradually
Or every man be blind.”

There’s just something about the timing of Elena’s truth bombs that make us slightly suspicious. Not Glenn Beck suspicious, but mos def Larry David suspicious.

Anyway, after reading yesterday’s article, and feeling a little sore about how all this truth-after-fact stuff makes the world a tiny baby’s hair more sucky, I found myself craving some good ol’ fashion Howard Stern. Remember him? Homeboy is still crazy funny, and he always comes across as someone who tells it like it is. Not after the fact, but as it happened.

Consider this a “compare/contrast essay” without the actual essay:


  1. Ahhh, the dulcet sound of Robin’s voice. Listening to that was my like Madeleine cookie. (P.s. it took me a couple of reads to understand the phrasing: “a tiny baby’s hair more sucky…” But it was worth the early morning effort.) x

  2. Unbundle the fact that Brower is neurotic from her opportunism, and continue to take on each issue separately.

    • thoughtframes

      In our neurotic society, the most pathological will become the leaders (see congress). Thus the same is true for America’s Yoga Corporate Complex. Any yogalebrity should be considered extremely dangerous and not allowed around children.

  3. Elena’s definition of truth is about as slippery and subjectively multi-faceted as Akira Kuruwsawa’s in “Rashomon”. She should watch it.

  4. Edward Staskus

    Howard Stern is funny? I didn’t know that. I thought he was the organ grinder and we were the monkeys.

  5. The P

    Truth sounds like a word a life coach would use because that is exactly what all this nonsense is, but I think you already know that. Making a moral inventory of your faults, confessing your transgressions to others, having “clearing conversations” where you make amends or clear the air, defining yourself as your problems (chicken/brat), this is straight up AA 12-step program reworked for a commercial “Brand”-el life coaching business. Introduce a well known celebrity in the yoga world to endorse said life coaching business and *poof* great business opportunity to expand into yoga/life coach courses, classes, seminars, workshops, trainings, etc. Getting stale on taking the same yoga workshops and trainings? Need something new? Now you can take life coaching and call that yoga!

    I will admit I fell for a weekend workshop and an intensive with this outfit based on yogilebrity marketing, oh, when will I learn.

  6. The P

    Also, if Elena wants to be totally transparent and truthful, well then, she should have disclosed all substances she has smoked in the article and not limit the confession to tobacco products. I mean if you are going to support telling the whole truth and coming clean fully, then do it. It seems the only truths that are being told are the ones that are beneficial to her image and brand. That is disingenuous.

    My take away from my experience with that brand of life coaching is that this business of truth telling is highly narcissistic and used solely for the benefit of the person speaking the “truth” to unburden themselves often at the expense of others.

    I recall one person in an intensive who committed to telling on herself for gossiping by admitting the transgression to the person she gossiped about. In one incident she called a lady a “train wreck” behind her back and then proceeded to phone the woman and tell her that she gossiped about her being a train wreck. You can guess how well that went over. I found this to be mean and unnecessary and was basically using another human being to alleviate her own guilt and support her “inner growth”. The life coach fully supported her actions. Maybe there are some “truths” we should keep to ourselves, yes?

    • amphibi1yogini

      Using people in service to the “brand” … Ask me why I will not venture onto Facebook anymore, and it ain’t just because I hate their Timeline …

  7. I’m surprised no one wanted to get all up into my Proustian stuff

  8. Greenpoint

    hmmmm, well, howard stern is about as funny as the flu, and unfortunately lasts a lot longer…

    I get sad anytime I listen to EB say anything, it just feels like she is incredibly lost, and yet seems like she so earnestly wants to be GOOD…

  9. The Corpse

    The lady’s petulant HuffPo outburst against YogaDork for exposing Mr. Friend is rather at odds with her self-declared passion for “truth”. Or maybe that should be truthiness, which is altogether less painful.
    Incidentally, Anusara is alive and doing quite well here in London. Elena might like it here.

    • Yoga Whelp


      Anusara is alive and well and thoroughly re-packaged, without a trace or mention of this year’s mega-meltdown unpleasantness, but retaining most of John-John’s theological goop, sans the guru, of course.

      The guru himself has re-emerged as a force in his own right again, babbling on about “roots” yoga and re-fashioning himself as Hatha, Inc.

      Meanwhile, the old Anusara centers (e.g. Willow Street Yoga in DC) have mainly re-spun themselves, stripping out any formal reference to their Anusaran origins, while presumably becoming more locally organic cultish communities. “Living Yoga” anyone?

      “Mitosis is the process by which a eukaryotic cell separates the chromosomes in its cell nucleus into two identical sets, in two separate nuclei. It is generally followed immediately by cytokinesis, which divides the nuclei, cytoplasm, organelles and cell membrane into two cells containing roughly equal shares of these cellular components.[1] Mitosis and cytokinesis together define the mitotic (M) phase of the cell cycle—the division of the mother cell into two daughter cells, genetically identical to each other and to their parent cell.”


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