Whoa, Bikram gets friendly with CA politico top dog Jerry Brown – pays him the big bucks! From LATimesblogs:
Brown’s gubernatorial campaign exploratory committee received a $25,900 donation from the L.A-based Bikram’s Yoga College of India earlier this month — the maximum allowable donation under California law.
The LA Times cites an interview with yogi Brown from 2005, in LA Yoga Magazine, where he hardly confirms nor denies his sole commitment to Bikram (once a politician…):
“Certainly if we had some of our more aggressive politicians doing yoga or meditating it would be definitely helpful,” he said. “I do think we’re in a very distracted world, 24-hour television, very frightening. So anything that contributes to wholeness, integrity or contemplation would be a very good corrective to the novelty obsession that characterizes our culture.”
About his yoga practice:
“I’ve done yoga in different places, Forrest Yoga in Santa Monica. I had yoga in my building and I did yoga in San Francisco in the Bikram-type studio, although the temperature was only in the low 90s, so it was only a deviant form of Bikram, a more comfortable form, I might add.”
We’re not sure how long Mr. Brown’s been practicing yoga, but his political career spans decades: he’s served as California Secretary of State (1971–1975), as Governor of California (1975–1983), as chair of the California Democratic Party (1989–1991), the Mayor of Oakland (1998–2006), and the Attorney General of California (2007–present). (wikipedia) We caught wind of him back in Feb ’09 when JB and Arnie wanted to crush the dreams of a $8 billion “gold-plated utopian hospital plan” for CA prisons replete with “yoga rooms”. So inmates don’t get fancy studios, but is Bikram hoping to sweat something out of this?
It’s no secret Bikram Choudhury has loads of celebriyogi namedroppings (Madonna not so much) and is currently bending over backwards trying to get his asana sports into the Olympics. We’re curious, what’s his golden interest in CA politics? And why is it worth 25,000 smackeroos?? (which is only about 2.5 sweaty students’ tuition by the way).