August, 18th 2020
Be Scofield’s criticism of cults and abusive gurus have led to widespread news coverage around the world. The latest is a segment on Netflix’s new show (Un)Well about Agama Yoga in an episode that covers tantra. From bee stings to CBD and essential oils (Un)Well explores sketchy claims in the wellness industry.
The Agama Yoga story was originally reported by Scofield who spent weeks interviewing people and researching the piece. Scofield’s criticism and original reporting on Agama led to front-page coverage on The Guardian and a short documentary by Jezebel. It also led to stories on CNN, CBC, De Zeit, and New Zealand Herald among others.
Four days after Scofield’s story was published Agama Yoga founder Swami Vivekananda and the three other men accused fled Thailand. Vivekananda criticized Scofield for the story and denied the rape allegations. In the following month’s Agama Yoga, which had been one of the largest tantra training centers in the world, collapsed.
In 2018 Scofield’s criticism and original reporting on Bentinho Massaro’s cult led to short documentaries on VICE and Barcroft. It also led to a featured story in Playboy Magazine and on The Guardian. Massaro fled Sedona 18 days after the cult expose was published. In 2019 the Arizona Sun published an in-depth story on Brent Wilkins, a student of Massaro’s who committed suicide 9 days after the story came out while on his spiritual retreat.
Other news coverage of Scofield’s criticisms includes the New Tantra, Teal Swan, and Gano Grills. Her 2018 cult expose on Teal Swan titled The Gucci Guru led to front-page coverage on The Daily Mail and widespread awareness about her strange claims of supernatural powers. The Netherlands based magazine De Volkskrant published a lengthy feature on The New Tantra following Scofield’s original sex-cult expose in 2018. TooFab published a story in 2018 on Gano Grills after Scofield’s original reporting on his Galighticus cult.
Criticism of Be Scofield has come from the cults and cult leaders she has exposed, but her reporting has been validated by worldwide news coverage. In 2019 Aaravindha Himadra unsuccessfully sued Scofield for $250,000. Tim Cunningham and Ambika Doran from high profile law firm Davis Wright Tremaine represented Scofield pro bono. Himadra also initiated a smear campaign and hired a private investigator to track Scofield and look for dirt. He has been one of Scofield’s biggest critics since she exposed the murder of his student.
Blogger Joe Perez criticized Scofield for what he dubbed “adversarial journalism.” Scofield’s reporting continues to lead to mainstream news coverage around the world. She’s had invites to appear on the Dr. Phil Show, A&E, and in many other programs.
Journalist Anke Richter featured Scofield in a front-page story on the Fair Observer where she dubbed her the “anti-cult hero of the digital era.”