Sid Roth Welcomes Mike Shreve

SID: Hello, Sid Roth here. Welcome to my world where it’s naturally supernatural. My guest, Mike Shreve, unbelievable. One of the top yoga instructors in the city, 4 major universities, teaching yoga, 400 students, and he gets up one day and he says “It’s all wrong. It’s a fraud. I want no part of it.” This is amazing, especially since the whole city knew about him, since the Tampa Tribune wrote an article about him. But Mike, let’s go back to kind of the beginning. How did you get into this Eastern type of meditation?

MIKE: The thing that precipitated that was a near death experience. When I was a rock musician and involved in the lifestyle that went along with that, I had an encounter with death because of drugs that showed me very clearly what I was living for would end in the grave and had no eternal relevance. I did not turn back to the church I was raised in because I didn’t feel any reality there all the years I was involved in it. But I did meet an Indian guru who promised that through the study of yoga and meditation, we could achieve this wonderful place that he called God-consciousness, and that was what I longed for. So I totally devoted myself to that search and I dropped out of school, I had been attending Florida State University, and devoted myself completely to the study of yoga. From 3:30 in the morning until 5:30 at night, we were involved in some kind of discipline: meditation, mantra yoga, hatha yoga exercises, or something that was geared toward this elusive goal of reaching God-consciousness.

SID: Alright, because I don’t understand this, if someone does reach God-consciousness, what does this mean?

MIKE: Of course it would be interpreted differently by different groups, but primarily, the people involved in yoga would say that achieving God-consciousness is actually achieving a realization that we are God. And that’s based on a pantheistic view of the universe.

SID: But of course, most people that I know that are involved in yoga are in it for the exercise, just cutting off the religious side of it.

MIKE: Right. Most people are. But that’s the front door that leads to some very different kind of ideas that all stem from Hindu philosophy.

SID: Now interestingly enough, the type of yoga that you were teaching, it’s Kundalini?

MIKE: Kundalini yoga.

SID: And what does Kundalini mean?

MIKE: Well the word Kundalini also means serpent power, which should be revelatory within itself. We know, as believers in the Bible, that the serpent is a symbol of something evil, a symbol of Satan. Well within new age circles, the serpent is a symbol of esoteric wisdom, and so I didn’t pick up on the negativity of it when I was a yoga teacher, but the Kundalini power is supposedly a dormant power coiled at the base of the spine, which is like a latent divinity within every human being. New age and far Eastern religion…

SID: “God is within everyone.”

MIKE: Right, that’s what they teach.

SID: Ok, now you already told me a little about your lifestyle. Now I understand that your hero at the time was Mahatma Gandhi, and you tried to emulate him. What did you do?

MIKE: Well that was definitely one of my role models, and at that time in my life, I was really seeking for as deep a level of spirituality as I could achieve. And I thought materialism was counter to that, so I gave away everything I owned and kept just one or two changes of clothes and a few eating utensils, and that’s all I owned. And of course, I had to walk everywhere, and I had to hitchhike everywhere, so that proved to be beneficial later when I had my encounter with God.

SID: Now spiritually, did you read all the religious books, the Bible, the Koran?

MIKE: Yes I did.

SID: Why would you read all of them?

MIKE: Because I thought all of them had elements of truth, and actually, now as a Christian believer, I admit that there are commonalities in all these scriptures of various religions, but I have discovered that those commonalities are at the base of what we would call theology, because it deals primarily with character issues. You find the golden rule, for instance, in every major religion. Treat your neighbor as you want to be treated.

SID: Which, as you said, are all good things, having to do with good character. But let’s take you back now. So you’re fairly successful in teaching this yoga, and all of a sudden, you hit it big. The Tampa newspaper writes an article about you, tell me about it.

MIKE: Well, it was a big half-page article and I thought for sure my classes would double and triple in size. I already had about 400 students who considered me their guru. Incidentally, the word guru means “one who brings you out of darkness into light.” But the problem was, I wasn’t really in the light yet. I thought I was, but I wasn’t in the true light.

SID: Then you get a letter from one of your close friends that tells you this.

MIKE: Oh yeah. Well see, the Tampa Tribune article triggered something, because there was a Christian prayer group in town that read that article and cut it out of the newspaper and pinned it to their prayer book, and assigned somebody to be fasting and praying over me every single day. So I was being soaked with intercession, and that certainly had it’s effect on me spiritually. But about two weeks into this time of being prayed for, an old friend of mine, as you mentioned,
wrote me a letter.

SID: So the prayer triggered this old friend to write you a letter.

MIKE: I believe God orchestrated all these events, but God does nothing except He does it in response to prayer. And he wrote me a letter, much to my surprise, because he and I both left college at the same time for the same reason, to study Eastern religions under different gurus. And he had walked into a church and he said the power of God fell on him and he heard an audible voice say that Jesus is the only way. And he felt that he had been born again.

SID: And the thing that had upset you was “only way.”

MIKE: Right.

SID: Not that Jesus is a way, but only way was the red flag.

MIKE: Which I couldn’t receive at first. I wrote Larry back and I said “I’m very happy for you, that you find Christianity is your path, but I can’t confine my beliefs to one religion. There’s no way I can do that.” But his letter weighed on my mind for days and days, especially the emphasis he placed on the cross, what the crucifixion of Jesus bought for the human race, forgiveness for sin, which were all concepts different than what I held at the time.

SID: But guess what? That prayer 24/7 had an effect. He just kept thinking about Jesus.

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