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  • Lafontaine, Juan Francisco (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    ABSTRACT The Healthy, Happy and Holy Organization (3HO) was founded in 1969 by the Indian Sikh and Yogi Harbhajan Singh Puri (1929-2004), AKA Yogi Bhajan , to spread his teachings and build a spiritual community. Since its foundation in Los Angeles, 3HO has reached many countries worldwide. Several ethnographical researchers have studied 3HO and most of these studies recognized 3HO as a part of the Sikh religion. Others have paid attention to 3HO as a New Religious Movement with New Age overtones. Some of these studies have focused on Yogi Bhajan s Kundalini Yoga and a small percentage have addressed all three constituent elements of the organization (Kundalini yoga, Sikhism, and New Age/Aquarian Age), but none have studied 3HO s experiential dimension. Thus, this study primarily concerned itself with the key experiential dimension of the organization, with the aim of identifying and describing the role that experience plays in 3HO s three-folded construction, and how a group of members of the movement deemed their experiences. The first data used for this study was the official manuals and books that have been published by the organization. This was complemented by the main data, which was gathered in interviews in a field research context with eleven 3HO members who were participating in the European Yoga Festival in France. All the material was approached through the perspective of Attributional Theory, which looks at how the notions of experience or experiences have been presented through a deeming making process. According to this approach, the findings achieved showed that experience plays a primary role in encompassing the three-folded parts of the movement. Also, 3HO gives their people the prescriptive aim to have an experience rather than believe or merely study the teachings of the founder. Thirdly, the study indicates that the attributions to the experiential dimension were based on the idea of its efficacy in order to experientially achieve a progress deemed spiritual . Similarly, the study was able to distinguish that a key encompassing notion attributed to the experiential perspective was that experience works. Ultimately, this dimension was more important than beliefs or theoretical discussions in opening the potential members to affiliate or assume an external as well as an internal involvement with the 3HO way of life.