The first inside account of growing up as the designated "chosen one" in the cult run by the charismatic guru Sri Chinmoy.
Born into a family of devout followers where absolute obedience to Sri Chinmoy was required, Jayanti Tamm spent twenty-five years in Chinmoy's inner circle. Considered a living saint by some, a shrewd con artist by others, Chinmoy established an ashram in Queens, New York, where all activities considered dangerous distractions to spiritual development--TV, radio, dancing, eating meat, and event sex--were prohibited.
In this colorful, eye-opening memoir, Tamm shares the trauma and triumphs of growing up "cult" in mainstream America and the powerful hold of such a lifestyle. Tamm also reveals a new side to the enigmatic personality of Chinmoy, who until his death in 2007 managed to convince thousands of his disciples and celebrities--Princess Diana, Desmond Tutu, Mother Teresa, Pope John Paul II, Nelson Mandela--that he was merely a humble emissary of peace.
Tamm offers a poignant and provacative look inside the cult's way of life, her own rebellions and troubled coming-of-age, her hard-won decision to finally leave the cult in her twenties, and the unique challenges she confronted as she built a new life.