Dozens of Valley residents discovered that the religious guru they started following was a fake, and now they are going to be in a movie about it showing in Tempe next week.
As seen the trailer for the film, one man said, "You feel like you have known him all your life," and another woman said, "I actually immediately felt better in his presence."
Vikram Gandhi, knows by his students as Kumarѐ, shot the film in Phoenix in the spring of 2010. Over the phone today he told CBS 5 News that he taught in one way or another more than 600 hundred students. They thought he was filming a documentary about his teachings.
"It was interesting trying to teach a Himalayan yogi master some magic tricks," said one Valley man in the movie's trailer.
But like any good movie, there were a few twists. Gandhi is an Indian-American who grew up in New Jersey and does not have the accent he used when speaking with his students. He admits, he made it all up.
"By making a film in this way where we see a fake teacher have the same effect as a real teacher, we can see religion and faith in a different way," Gandhi said.
Kimberly Chavira was one of his students who spoke with CBS 5 News Friday night.
"I still believe in it," she said. "At that moment, yes. I felt like I was lied to."
But now she said she learned from it, weather it was real or not.
"It taught me a lesson," she said.
As for the ones involved that were not happy about being fooled, Chavira said some of them walked out when Gandhi revealed his true identity.
The film will show at the Harkins Valley Art in Tempe Aug. 17-23.
Copyright 2012 KPHO (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Tuesday, May 21 2013 9:43 PM EDT2013-05-22 01:43:10 GMT
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