A WOMAN has told how she was made a slave by the abusive leader of a yoga cult beloved by celebrities Alicia Keys and Demi Moore.
Charlotte Medlock spent four years at the Ra Ma Yoga Institute – and described how her life was turned upside down under the tyrannical leadership of Katie Griggs – better known as Guru Jagat.
Charlotte (on the right) with her former boss and the community leader Guru Jagatgurujagat
gurujagatYoga cult survivor said she had to chant mantras 24/7 to avoid accidents or death[/caption]
gurujagatGuru Jagat was caught up in allegations of cult behaviour and abuse[/caption]
PAKate Hudson was reportedly one of Jagat’s high-profile students[/caption]
SplashJagat also led Alicia Keys through breathing exercises before she hosted the Grammys in 2019[/caption]
Wooed by her “charismatic” nature, Charlotte said she found solace in Jagat’s Kundalini yoga, completed her teacher training and took up a job working as her marketing director.
Well-known as a yoga instructor for the stars, Charlotte said she was initially thrilled to be working for Jagat.
But she described the cult leader – who died suddenly aged 41 in 2021 – as a “tyrant” who turned her into a paranoid wreck.
Other former students claim she preyed on teachers financially and even arranged marriages between followers.
Speaking to The Sun, Charlotte described how she spent four years working under the “cruel” and “delusional” leadership of Jagat before finally managing to flee.
“She became extremely verbally abusive,” she said.
“She was just like a tyrant – just screaming at us in meetings. There were no boundaries.”
Forced to shun her family, live on a diet of only cheese and listen to mantras 24 hours a day, Charlotte tried to quit three times before she finally broke free.
After quitting her corporate job in 2016, Charlotte said the Ra Ma Yoga institute – founded in 2013 by Jagat – gave her a sense of purpose.
“There was something different about her [Jagat],” Charlotte said.
“She was very charismatic. It was really the only thing that was giving me a sense of positivity and belonging, and spirituality and purpose.
“It didn’t matter how cruel or mean she was to me.
“I felt this sense of attachment to her. She was giving my life meaning at the time.”
Unlike mainstream yoga classes, Kundalini yoga offers a prescriptive lifestyle.
Popular with celebs, Jagat reportedly led Alicia Keys through breath work hours before she hosted the Grammys in 2019 – and reportedly also taught Kate Hudson.
According to Los Angeles Magazine, it wasn’t unusual to also see the likes of Demi Moore in Jagat’s classes.
There is no suggestion Jagat’s clients are linked to any wrongdoing.
Although Jagat had no direct connection to Brand, she was close to Tej Kaur Khalsa – a co-founder of Ra Ma Institute and Brand’s spiritual teacher.
But Charlotte said life under Jagat’s leadership turned into a “slippery slope” of abuse and paranoia.
It became a hamster wheel that I couldn’t get off
She was expected to be available 24 hours a day and wake up at 4am every day to meditate when the sun and the Earth were “aligned perfectly”.
Sleep-deprived and overworked, Charlotte practised meditations for hours a day – fearing that missing one could result in bad luck.
“Every time I made a mistake or something bad happened, I was told it’s because I’m not waking up at 4am and doing my yoga practice,” she said.
“It became a hamster wheel that I couldn’t get off.”
She also stopped eating meat after she was told it would “rot in her stomach” – and cut out eggs from her diet after being told they were bad for her spiritual energy.
One thing that stayed in her diet was cheese as she was told it helps with breathing exercises.
“I gained a lot of weight because I was eating cheese all the time for protein,” she said.
“It’s ironic because even though I’m yogi and I’m supposed to be super healthy, I was actually the unhealthiest I had ever been.”
The cult made pupils listen to mantras every minute of a day and night, Charlotte said.
It swallowed up her life to the point she became paranoid about the mantras turning off while she was sleeping.
“If you don’t sleep with it on, then bad entities can come in while you sleep and attack you at night,” she said.
“It got into my subconscious.”
The meditations were all-encompassing with mantras ranging from how to lose weight to how to fix your eyesight.
And a mantra could last from 11 minutes to 62 minutes, so Charlotte would spend all day “hyperventilating”.
But she said they were “addictive”.
“It was definitely weird at first, but then it did give me a really like high that I hadn’t found in any type of yoga,” Charlotte explained.
“It makes you feel like you’re hovering on a cloud and I think that feeling can be very addictive.”
Some of the mantras were supposedly so powerful that they would prevent death.
“They would always say that a Yogi gets to choose when they take their last breath,” Charlotte said.
Becoming increasingly paranoid, she chanted mantras to supposedly stop car accidents or plane crashes from happening.
She was brainwashed to believe she was so powerful that she would be able to choose the moment she died.
Kundalini yoga claimed to be the “most powerful type of yoga” and promised to be “anti-ageing”.
Followers were led to believe they could advance their human body and live longer.
I was the unhealthiest I had ever been
Charlotte was also told to “not think about” her family because she was “liberated”.
“There is a teaching where it says you shouldn’t spend more than 72 hours with your family or you’ll revert back to a seven-year-old,” she explained.
And when their leader, Guru Jagat, suddenly passed away in 2021, the cult members believed she reached her nirvana.
“She died very suddenly, it was very shocking,” Charlotte said.
“And the way they explained it was by saying she completed her mission.”
Despite the abuse, Charlotte stayed in the Ra Ma community for four years.
But when the pandemic hit, Guru Jagat became more “abusive and paranoid”, she claimed.
When a fellow Yogi named Bhajan – who died in 2004 – was accused of sexual abuse, the cult leader defended her counterpart.
“She denied the women and said they were liars and paid off by the CIA,” Charlotte said.
Guru Jagat’s far-right conspiracies, including ones about vaccine, and paranoia became too much for Charlotte to handle.
After leaving, Charlotte said she grieved the loss of her “soul family” as she believed she would be with them forever.
“Part of the indoctrination process was creating a sense that my whole life was meaningless without them,” she added.
Guru Jagat and her institution have faced numerous allegations of manipulation and running a cult.
After her death, former followers spoke out on the culture of abuse they encountered in the Ra Ma community.
The Sun has contacted Ra Ma for comment.
Charlotte MedlockThe Kundalini followers were made to believe they can advance their human limits and live longer[/caption]
Charlotte MedlockCharlotte spent four years in the Ra Ma community and tried to quit three times[/caption]Leave a comment