First of all, what is misconduct?
There are already many definitions of confidentiality and sacretness of teacher-student, therapist/healer-client relationships. Within most professional educations and assosiations are also a code of ethics and professional standards. The simple reason is to protect the student/client (and sometimes the teacher/therapist).
Even when the student or client have a crush on the teacher or want a private relationship, sex, ... it is break of trust from the teacher if he/she gives in. Of course love can happen, and the teacher/therapist can step back from the professional job (meaning work with something else for a while) and at the same time of course refer the client / student to another teacher/ therapist.
Within kundalini yoga in tradition after Yogi Bhajan is a "cool of" period that last at least 6 months. This means if the teacher want to engage with you in private and it is mutual, then to simply take 6 months break from each other and feel within if you both still want a private relationship after this time and what kind of relationship. This is to take care of the student.
You can get some help on the dynamichs- and tips how to handle (both as teacher and student) in the book Sex and the spiritual teacher. One way to put it is very simple. When you go to your doctor, you don´t expect him/her to want an intimate relationship with you and be invited into your life as other than a proffesionel.
Other clues are:
- Your teacher grasp you
- Kiss you when vaulnerble
- Uses your vaulnerbility for his/her own purpose.
- Want to date you and does not stop teaching
- Want secret relationship with you
- Might want you to lie for him/her
- The teacher does maybe not accept "no" for an answer
- Think all his/her problems are everybody else fault
- Try to seek you or your friends up in privately and might even where you live
- Talks, calls or text inappropiate messages to you
- You most likely think you are the only one
- You are lied to
- Or even worse as rape and much else
When more subtile versions clients/student might not recognize in the beginning what is going on.
However they are all violation of the teacher/therapist/healer student/client role.
It can simply also be a teacher wanting you to lent him/her money and other crazyness.
There can be different ways around it and also most clients and students are embaresed when they discover they are not the only one, that they were flattered to give in, thought the teacher really really loved them, might be married ... (The list is long.)
What to do about it to make it stop:
CALL IT OUT LOUD is one posibility depending the situation.
This can be done in several ways.
- Say "no"
- Going to the police, i.e a teacher stalking you, have been sexual inapropiate, keeps texting you, keeps contacting you, .... does not respect your "no".
- Go to the teachers/therapist professional organisation or association. (Within kundalini yoga, tradition after Yogi Bhajan, you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. They are located in Espaniola, NM.) You can do this to help make it stop and prevent it to happen to others. The teacher can get help to change behavior or get kicked out if it is a repeadetly problem. Here I refer to kundalini yoga because that is what I know, but unfortunately this is an issue within so many kind of "spiritual settings" so if this happens to you go to the teachers/therapist professional organisation.
- Post on facebook groups and social medias and so on. If one step forward most likely many more will.
Why: To take care and protect yourself! Simple as that.
As a kundalini yoga student you have the right to a safe room for practice and learning. See photo below. In different therapy directions or main organisations there are also rules and guidelines.
It is unfortunately not always made officially that there are rights as a student/client. Many people seek up therapy, yoga- and other practise and events when vaulnerble and hoping to heal and grow or just do something new and expand. This shall be hornered by the practitioner/teacher/therapist.
The sessions, classroom ... be a safe space and the teacher-studen relationship as well.
If you are a curent or former kundalini yogini or yogi who has meet a teacher that overstepped the sacredness of his/her role as a teacher, then feel free to reach out to me.
Let me know if you want to meet others. If you want to be in a self help group or what you need.
May we all grow and live into more love, connection to our soul and happiness.
In service and with love,
Ajeetdev Kaur Khalsa
See the previous blogpost "Call it out loud - Sex and the spriritual teacher"
#10RightsOfAKundaliniYogaStudent #CodeOfProfessionalStandards #CodeOfEthics #MeToo