Swami Continues to Harm While Some Escape

By Rani

A long list of good people have left the Swami Chetanananda – AKA J. Micahel Shoemaker.

All of them left with bad feelings.

Of course, some left to jump off a bridge, walk into a river in the middle of the night, run away with nothing, after realizing they had been abused. Some came and used drugs at the Movement Center, and at least one died after getting out of rehab.

There are ex-members who joined “a good thing” and then saw it turn bad, like Nxvim, Heaven’s Gate, Jonestown, and a thousand other cults led by traumatizing narcissists like J. Michael Shoemaker.

Where are the statements from the doctors, lawyers, and scholars who were part of the Movement Center? 

What do they say to legitimize Shoemaker’s actions now?

Would Andrew Sheppard, the new Vice President of Regional Operations for Brookdale, happily disclose his long-time association with Shoemaker?

Or would he have difficulties explaining why he and Faith were long-time devotees?

In 1978, Lawrence and Mary Eyink of Cincinnati reportedly abducted their own son Dan in an attempt to deprogram him from Shoemaker. Dan Eyink had dropped out of college to follow the bogus swami.

“It seemed like his eyes were dead…He had a mechanical smile,” his father said.

Dan had cut off his family. How many other Shoemaker devotees have done the same?

What is Dan doing now? Still with Shoemaker?

Nope, Dan Eyin is now a doctor. He graduated with an MD from the University of Massachusetts in 1994. He worked as an Internist & Primary Care Physician in Newburyport until 2010 and now has a private practice.

What happened? Why did he leave Shoemaker? What does Dr. Dan Eyink think of his time with Shoemaker? What does he think of how the Movement Center has been run since he left? Has he spoken with Ruth, Jes, Jessica, Natacha, Eva, Lili, Pinky, Megan, or dozens of others who have been assaulted?

What about Drs. Bonner and Reese? Their nephew did not benefit from his time at the Movement Center. He died while a resident of Shoemaker’s institute.

Dr. Bonner’s father, John Bonner, also died at the Movement Center. How do the family members feel about having Dr. John Bonner in this house of horrors?

John Bonner’s influential work with cellular slime molds shed light on the mechanisms of microbial life and illuminated the behavior of cells in all life forms.

Are they happy this accomplished man, one of the world’s leading experts on slime mold, spent his last years in the company of people being harmed and exploited, lied to, gaslit, and scammed?

Did Dr. J. Bonner have deep conversations over wonderful vegetarian meals with Marc Gafni, the alleged resident pedophile at the Movement Center?

Marc Gafni

Where are the testimonials of happier lives, greater fulfillment, lifetime accomplishments, thriving charities, and civil society contributions that have come out of the Movement Center?

I am reading of 50 years of lives lost, families destroyed, careers put on hold, and money scammed away for drugs and prostitutes.

I am reading and seeing luxury living for Shoemaker and his inner circle (Sharon Ward, Jim Brissette, Patty, Tom, Theresa, Salman, and others). 

Lilli, Shoemaker and James

In contrast, rank-and-file members (Karen Sutherland, Randy Sutherland, Lilliana Lopez, Thomas Harberts, Jesse Sweeney, Megan Grable and many others) perform “seva” to keep everything in tiptop shape for their guru.

To all the “know nothings” that Keshab referred to in his/her post, “This is a group of people who do not know the truth about swami’s abusive and manipulative ways. If they did, most of this group would leave.”

Let’s make sure they and everyone else know about the lies, abuse, scams, and damage J. Michael Shoemaker has done and continues to do.

Call Frank. Let him know what you know.

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  • I don’t understand something- maybe frank can answer. I get that there is power in numbers, but I don’t get how expecting people to martyr themselves and then pressuring them by putting massive amounts of pressure ( which can make any person very tense) by saying that people are obligated, and if they don’t come forward they are part of the abuse, you must pick side that others( you) decided are real for you- is not in itself abusive? That type of pressure is deadly for anyone. They teach teachers that the very first thing to begin the process of learning is to make a child feel safe- because it has now been proven that if any person ( child, etc) doesn’t feel safe, they can’t learn. They in Defense ( survival mode). That would be a nightmare for anyone who has already experienced feelings of trauma. Wouldn’t it? Isn’t that counter productive? Or at least asst up for people not being able to actually stay in the decision if they do come forward? Thank you for reading this! I am so grateful that I have not experienced anything that people have described in these articles and comments!

  • After 26 years in Portland, Oregon in a community based upon love and respect, Swami Chetanananda left for Gold Beach. The tone in which he left was filled with bitterness, disappointment (towards the community), and anger. There was a great photo that Swami posted of himself, his leg hoisted up on the fender of a U haul truck as he prepared to move for good. It had all the charm and grace of an angry teenager telling his parents to fuck off. Here is this guy: gloating, belligerent, and defiant in his tasteless, disgraceful departure from the community he established in 1993, in Portland. His anger and disappointment was over problems HE created. How ironic. Remember: a narcissist can never be wrong. No matter what. Their bruised and fragile egos won’t allow for that. The entire closing down of the Ashram would not have been handled in a worse way. And–people noticed. Angry teenager is apropos, because that about describes the emotional intelligence of this Guru. Instantaneously, he set up Gold Beach in the same old secretive and preferential ways that his bent. There has been no big reinvention of Swami Chetanananda upon the move to Gold Beach. Only rehashed ways of doing things, and a tired group of long time followers, none of whom have the strength to do anything else with their lives. No change. Same same.

  • How about the fact that in a cult, victims are always blamed. The “machine” can never be wrong. Only others can be wrong. “highest best interest”, is a phrase this Guru used frequently. Over the years, he had multiple girlfriends who were decades younger than he is. How could this be in their highest, best interest? Huh? How? It can’t be, and wasn’t.

    It was in his highest best interest. You selfish pig you. One young Mom came and there was discussion of Swami changing the name of the youngest child. How inappropriate. You autocratic, domineering pig. Do you condone this, Sadhvi? Do you condone this, Theresa? You accomplices you. You cult members. You have lost your sense of right and wrong, long ago. What kind of people have you become, that you turn your back on this horrible behavior? Oh, I forgot, in Shaivism, it is said that there is no such thing as sin. I see. It is a license for terrible behavior.

  • How about acting a physician (without a license), choking his female patients, or otherwise sexually assaulting them. Placing hard drugs in front of a young person who had a history of drug problems, lying to everyone constantly. How about telling his students for years not to focus on money, or retirement, while the entire time working on a large scale real estate deal, which he cashed in at the end. How about, two key lieutenants providing cover for him, and misdirection. How about not ever wanting anyone to succeed in worldly endeavors. How about advising a young woman to become a gemologist instead of going to college. How about, how about, how about ,how about ,how about. SADHVI: WHERE ARE YOU IN ALL OF THIS???? HUH? Shame on you. Deep shame. You call yourself a person of service?

  • The Church of Divine Energy, (the new name for The Movement Center), has a weird, “icky” vibe to it.
    What do they have to hide? Secrets, secrets, and more secrets. Apparently there has been a whole lot to hide all along the way!

  • OMG David Komito the horny massage therapist! Another phony who fit right in. He and Shoemaker were lovers.

  • Time to get out.

    To those loyal followers, are you going to have your kids and grandkids follow Chet too?

    Is it really worth sacrificing your soul to be in the inner circle?

    You see how brain damaged Moni is.

    When Chet left Portland for Gold Beach, he left so many behind- left them with nothing after they devoted decades to him- years of free labor thinking they were part of a lifelong community.

    Where is swamis commitment to them? What kind of a guru does this?

    • What kind of people SUPPORT and stay with a “guru” that does this? They are heartless, cold and evil. Name them again. Name every last one of them living with the demon in Gold Beach. They know what he does. They watch, they cover it up, they defend him. You ALL will pay for this man’s crimes.

  • Since the inception of this “New Cage” movement which he was spawned out of…. having a “Guru” for many is a “status symbol” for how “spiritual” you are… The Beatles, Carli Simon, Richard Gere (helped him give up his gerbil addiction haha). It’s no different then driving a Porsche, especially now with social media. Look at all these photos with these people grinning like absolute morons, reminds me of that “staged” photo with Natasha where everyone have these cheesed out super smiles of her “coming home” after throwing herself off a bridge. Those people did not care about her. They were not her friends. These are trained seals. “Look ecstatic!”. All for the Swami Show. Yes there are many people duped, there is also the cold truth that many of his followers are there because they share his pathological need for recognition, status, spiritual materialism and narcissism, it’s a circle jerk of super egos. They will stay with him because they ARE him. If you ever look at narcissists who stay married the longest? You know what the secret is? Their spouse is a narcissist too. Just a sneakier one. Only way that works. They just find other people to feed on together. The narcs/sociopaths in his fold will die before admitting they were wrong about anything including him. They will scapegoat whomever is most convenient. Their paper thin skin can’t handle the idea of being viewed less then perfect no matter how much they have to lie to themselves and everyone else to maintain that “image”. Vanity…. vanity… vanity. Satans favorite for obvious reasons. https://youtu.be/Y2SC4JWuQc0

    • The followers join to find themselves. They stay because they indeed truly have no sense of who they are. They leave… well they never leave because they are now parasites clinging to a vampire who is sucking their life force out of them and spending it on his sordid pleasures. Perhaps the ones who were injured for Michael Shoemaker’s entertainment are the fortunate ones. Maybe being carried out on a stretcher is salvation. Eventually the damaged MAY realize they can stand alone in their own strength. Maybe not. They have to dig past their scars to find that strength.

      The rest of them? Too late.

      They are but walking dead.

      What a pathetic mess.

  • Best thing Dr. Dan Eyink could do for his own career and to save the lives of others, would be to come forward and tell all he knows and went through.

    I’m sure those named in this article want to leave the past behind, but that’s what psychopaths like swami Chet count on.

    • THIS^

      And thus those who remain who chose to stay silent are fully aware and fully responsible. It makes me lose faith in humanity to think about people like this.

  • All the strong people left indeed. Because no individual with any sense of themselves would put up with The Swami’s bullshit indefinitely. He seems to enjoy cutting ties with people, perhaps it makes him feel strong. A steroid popping, over muscled weightlifter. And a known bully.

    • I don’t understand why people keep referring to this gross pig as muscular. he works his arms & chest with weights. big deal. he’s not fit and he’s not a weightlifter. He’s just a piece of shit

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

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Contact Frank with tips or for help.
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Email: frankparlato@gmail.com