This morning I woke up with the most unusual of thoughts and memories disturbing me and crowding my mind and emotions. Of course a quick meditation calmed most of it down. 

am quite sure that this photo was from the fire ceremony mentioned in this post

sometimes, I just am amazed at what I remember. Silly things, buried in the recesses of my mind.

What were these bizarre thoughts? They were about copycatting. And to do with me. Of course. 

When people try to BE you. Like in a scary sci-fi movie where there is another you

I vividly recall many years ago, coming to stay at a house that I part owned. The young woman who was living there at the time had gotten a haircut identical to mine (a bob), was wearing clothes that I'd given her which was fine. But she was talking the same as me, and emulating my body language too. "Great", I thought, "you've just killed me and taken my place". It was so unnerving. Another time, I had moved in with a new flatmate. I came home, just two or three days after she had moved in, to find her dressed identically to me, and she had bought a new lipstick in the same shade that I wore. I just stared in horror. 

I can see the humour in all of this. Now, I can. I couldn't at those times.

When your intellectual knowledge gets knicked

Far more serious were the times when my work was "stolen". 

For some weird reason, a short while ago, I clicked on a small video of a woman whom I'd never met, but who lives in my country. She was being promoted as being a-maz-ing with pranayama (yoga breathing practices). And there she was. Word for word from one of my blogposts, teaching a channelled breathing/meditation from my blog. I wrote it a few Christmases ago. It was Word. For. Word. Honestly, I didn't know what to do about it. So I did nothing. Actually I said some strong choice bad words into the ether directed at her. A lot of naughty words.

There was a yoga teacher who was living in Auckland. Adored by her fans. She was apparently amazing. What. Ever. and As. If. Whenever she came to a seminar that one of my friends took, next thing you knew, she was teaching the same as she had just learnt, at a residential retreat. Stealing. Outright. And making big bucks from it. I was so careful to never, ever teach anything new when she was around. But one afternoon, we had a fire ceremony. I was one of the leaders of the ceremony. I closed my eyes and taught a technique that only I knew. Awakening the heart space. Unless you learnt it from me, you won't find it in any books. Unless the writer learnt it from me. I was wondering why the other fire ceremony leader was a wee bit uptight. I was about to find out why. I opened my eyes at the end of the meditation, and saw the technique thief whom I have been talking about. She was grinning at me. I was so upset. I knew that she was going to flounce around teaching it as "her" meditation. Then one day, I find that she has done a ton of meditations on youtube. I started to search for anything, including my heartspace meditation, that she had stolen. I realised that I could go a bit nutty doing this, so I stopped. (more extremely choice bad words here)

I told someone whom I taught with, at a yoga school, about the same meditation, over fifteen years ago. He changed it, and made it "better". Then pompously taught it left, right and centre. It wasn't "better" with the changes. It was just stupid and incorrect. Never gave me any credit for teaching him it. I never repeated another secret technique to him. But others have done it too. Taken something that I've taught them, that you won't find in books, and then "fixed it" because well, apparently they "knew all about" whatever the practice was (not). So darn frustrating. 

Stealing happens everywhere

This happens in all walks of life. I hear people whom I've trained as yoga teachers, repeating a lot of my sayings. Which is fine. But sometimes it's a bit suss. I always used to say, for example, that "there was a technique for everything". I saw this saying on a website of someone whom I'd taught. As their own special knowledge. A lot of it I don't mind. Not at all. What I do mind is self promotion and dishonesty. Over decades, I was caught so many times by unscrupulous yoga teachers who used my knowledge about applying yoga, in order to make themselves look good. I had a full pregnancy program from pre conception to post natal, four long training courses, and a book I'd written, where others sneakily claimed authorship. I'm very vocal about me being the writer of any of these if it ever comes up. 

Sigh. Let's not forget healers

If I'm doing a healing with other healers around, and I realise that someone is watching and is going to try to copy me, without actually knowing what I'm really doing, I stop, change tacks and just do healing that the healing thief already knows. With healing, I truly believe that we need to put in time with our craft, and learn bit by bit, as we in turn progress with how we work on our clients. Willy-nilly copycat healing turns out horrible for the unsuspecting client. And yes, at some spiritual workshops for healing, I've heard people pompously and authoritively repeat what I've said, as their own knowledge. As I write this, I recall an odious woman who launched a subversive hate campaign against me, blissfully repeating a lot of what I'd said. And get this - especially about love. Honestly.... 

A caveat about all of this

I definitely learnt the hard way about people who are after fame and fortune. Most healers and yoga teachers are NOT like this. Most are truly wonderful people. I say this also from long experience.

I learnt to be more discriminating. It took me quite a while, many years actually

I am very cagey now about what I say regarding so called 'secret" knowledge. If that knowledge was earned and discovered by me, I do not hand it out, willy-nilly. I used to be very generous with it. Actually I still am generous with it all. But just more careful in my choices of sharing. 

omg!! It happens on the web too

Copycatting happens in blogland too. Of course it does. I used to make sure that I wasn't writing about something that any of my favourite bloggers wrote about. I don't do this background check anymore, but I try to never deliberately steal off another blogger. And I do know that sometimes I'll accidently write about something that one of the bloggers whom I follow, also writes about. The first time that I inadvertently did this, I was horrified. Now I accept that "great minds think alike", and sometimes this happens by mistake. One time though, I found a chapter in a book written by a fellow blogger, that read like it had been directly taken from my blog. I felt sick inside at this. 

Wow. I'm a bit gobsmacked by my rant. All from waking up with unpleasant memories. This is what happens when you "handle" unpleasant things over a lifetime, and then they lie in wait, ready to emerge when you don't want them to. Definitely this fits into psychological health.

Eeks, best stop. Right now.

** click here for some very simple yoga 

** click here for a post about values


  1. I always find writing the stuff whirring around my head very therapeutic.
    They say imititation as the most sincere form of flattery but hvaing also experienced "friends" blantently copying, I'd rather not be flattered! xxx

    1. Thanks for commenting, Vix. Yes, it's disconcerting when people copycat. I never know what to do. But honestly, you're so unique that any copying will be not so good for the Vix knicker.

  2. I can't believe people have stolen from you - that is terrible, and so wrong on their part! It's good you are able to still continue to create and share though and not let them drag you down!

    Hope you are having a good weekend! It's another busy but fun one here :)

    Away From The Blue

    1. Amazing how people get away with it. I've seen this happen to friends - having their intellectual property stolen. Not a good look

  3. So cathartic. Thank you for sharing. Have a happy weekend.

    1. Chuckle. I was surprised that yes it was cathartic. I simply got inspired to write about stealing.

  4. I'm sorry to read that people have been appropriating your knowledge and ideas and passing them as their own. It's good that you are speaking out about it.

    1. Thanks, Bless. What spurred me on was finding out that a close friend recently quietly did it to me. (sigh)

  5. If that word for word stealing happened in America, a cease and desist letter would be sent with a threat of a lawsuit. (Yes, the U.S. is both blessed and cursed with an abundance of lawyers.) Usually, the cease and desist letter does the trick. I’m sorry you’ve had so many still your work!


    1. Thanks, Michelle. I'm not the only yoga teacher, or healer who has this problem. Sadly. A person only has to change the written words or content by 10% to get past copywrite laws, here. So that's how a lot of stealing gets done. The rest is just blatant cheek.


Post a Comment