Sunday, September 15, 2013

Can I get a cynical amen?

I took a yoga class with a friend today.  We thought we were going to make it to a class we used to go to, but it wasn't being held, so we looked up another place on line.  She mentioned a place in Larchmont that now was 9 locations, including one they have taken over from the owners in West Hollywood that was quite a popular studio.  Now it's one of these.

The class was $22, which felt steep to me, and the cheerless Lena Dunham doppleganger took my money she was all business. I may have grumbled about the price a little. Or expressed my shock. I don't know why - it's an hour and a half, and I think most hour classes I've taken are around $15, so that's the going market rate.  I think it was the chain aspect that had me prejudiced before I walked in.

I'm not saying it's a good characteristic, I'm just saying I noticed it.

On the door on the way out they have their rating at the number one yoga studio in town from a local review source, with the opening line, "If yoga was taught in a factory..."

My mother recommended Deepak Chopra's novelization of the life of Buddha called "Buddha" the other day. My brother read it as well. I just can't. It's the story of the Buddha. Why do I need Deepak Chopra's vision of it? It's probably wonderful. I'm sure Oprah's read it. I bet they've had deep talks about about it. In fact, his name sounds like "Deep talk."

I haven't written much on this blog about what I would call spiritual materialism, or the idea that if you are wealthy, or in line with the Universe, wealth will come your way.  It's a uniquely American idea. I think it's deeply ingrained here.  I don't know what that has to do with Deepak Chopra writing another book or spending $22 for a yoga class, but they all feel intertwined. I could just be tired.

This serenity is big business, no?


Elizabeth said...

I need to talk to you about my yogic encounters with Russell Brand -- or have I told you about them already. I think you're absolutely right -- all this chain yoga or hip yoga or whatever reminds me of when the Catholic church started the folk mass or maybe even when Christians started Christian rock. Ugh all around.

I hear that Liberation on La Brea is still fairly old-fashioned and unassuming. I'm thinking about going there.

Criticlasm said...

Yes - that was a great story. And thanks for the tip. Don't know why it bothers me so, but it does.

It's nice to do yoga, though.