Sex Initiation

“Nobody joins a cult. Nobody joins something they think’s going to hurt them. You join a religious organization, you join a political movement, and you join with people that you really like.”
Deborah Layton

“And the girls kept telling me I should sleep with him because this was a big chance for my evolution, the moment I would do that move, I would become an initiate and would have a special life. I would progress very much from a spiritual point of view. And that the master does me a big favour by sleeping with me.”

“I think that the main reason was, like, because I was troubled and depressed. And I was somehow completely lost. So I took the first lifeline I could get to. And as they were promising, like, increased well-being and stuff like that, I just thought that I’ll try it. And I believed pretty firmly that it’d help me.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“I also did learn yoga, and… there were printed courses.”
Alina, Former MISA member

“My mother was a yogi, she was with … she didn’t know anything about the weird side of this cult, she thought it was a perfectly legitimate place where you can do yoga and I wanted to see what it was all about so I joined.”
Roxana Former MISA member

“I was a minor, but I didn’t find out what actually happens in MISA until I became 18. Up until then I was entirely convinced that in MISA they only teach you yoga.”
Cristina, Former MISA member

Joining The School

People often join the school because of their interest in spirituality, yoga and connecting with like-minded individuals. Some are curious about Tantra and want to improve their relationships.

All the schools in the Atman Yoga Federation follow the same curriculum, which consists of both theory and practice. The courses go on for many years.

Every week the students go to class and learn about a new topic. This way the students are drawn to new course material, and they bond over time with like-minded people within the school.

Bivolaru is described to the students as a special being with supernatural powers, with many older students and teachers believing that he has achieved enlightenment. “He is someone who knows what the adepts need in their spiritual evolution”. He is also praised for the hardships that he has withstood in the former communist regime in Romania. The most devout followers are given new names by Bivolaru. Renaming members is one way of binding them into the movement.

Bivolaru is openly worshipped in the schools, his picture decorates the yoga halls and it is displayed at every event the school organizes. However, because of the increasing controversies, the information about the spiritual master has been taken down from many school’s websites in recent years.



Sexuality is a significant subject within the tantra course. The sexual energy is seen as a tool for transformation. This is a distinction between having sex and making love, and sexual continence (sex without ejaculation) is strived for.

There are clear ideals for how men and women should conduct themselves, and separate classes for men (Vira) and women (Shakti) are offered in some of the schools. Women are encouraged to “open up” sexually, and it is accepted and encouraged for a woman to have sex with other women. However, sex between men is discouraged and seen as an obstruction to enlightenment.

Open relationships are encouraged in the school. Many students and teachers in the school have multiple lovers and some teachers even have sexual relationships with their students.

To receive some teachings, students go through so called “initiations” that are kept secret for those outside the school. These secret initiations can range from meditation techniques to sexual positions. Over time, keeping secrets become a norm for the students.

For some initiations, students need to send in photos of themselves in their underwear. It is believed that Bivolaru has the ability to see peoples energetic auras, and in order to make a judgement whether they are fit for the initiation, he assesses the photos he receives. Many schools have also adopted this photo policy by order from Bivolaru. Even if you have no prior involvement with the school, you are required to send in photos in your underwear to attend many events/camps. This way Bivolaru has access to all of the women that attend his events. He then reaches out to his coordinators from the schools/camps in order to lure them to Paris so he can “initiate” them.



“Well, If you start from the fact that the erotic aspect is used as a tool of spiritual growth. – So then, naturally the yoga exercises start to be more about developing your shakti, your sexuality and gender awareness in such a direction that you will be readier and more able to experience that erotic side of yours.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“Several colleagues from the yoga course told me that it’s very beautiful, that you come to transform, that it really helps you as a woman.”
Alina, Former MISA member

“My mother was a yogi, she was with … she didn’t know anything about the weird side of this cult, she thought it was a perfectly legitimate place where you can do yoga and I wanted to see what it was all about so I joined.”
Roxana Former MISA member

“The leader of Natha Helsinki – um, Finland, told me that our guru Grieg would like to meet me. I was told that we’d do lots of yoga, so I should take comfortable clothes with me, and we wouldn’t go out much.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“Somehow I knew I was called to have sex with him, sort of. It wasn’t a certitude. We weren’t told…”
Alina, Former MISA member

“So you find out that you received a holiday, you aren’t told about any conditions, you aren’t told anything, except that you have this extraordinary chance, this gift from Gregorian Bivolaru to go there… We were told that because of the harmony of our bodies we could go, because we’re very spiritual beings.”
Cristina, Former MISA memeber

Invitation From The Master

When the female students have been in the school for a certain period and undergone some initiations, private invitations are sent by Bivolaru and communicated to the adept by a female initiate, who points out how extraordinary the adept’s personality is and that the master’s offer is truly exceptional.

All communication regarding the initiation is held secret and the adept is explicitly forbidden to speak about it. Sometimes small gifts are sent from Bivolaru, such as necklaces, these are seen as prestigious among the initiated women.

The sexual content and the conditions of the initiation are not described.

In some cases the woman is also asked to make a payment, but this is more akin to a financial deposit, which is usually returned after the event, because all the expenses related to the initiation are understood as a gift from the master.


Arriving In Paris

Before Bivolaru was wanted by police for sex trafficking, he was able to have initiations in a villa in Costinesti, Romania, where yoga camps take place each year.

During the time of Bivolaru’s hiding in Paris, all the transfers were kept completely secret, which means that neither the address of the Paris ashram inhabited only by women nor the place of the initiation, was known by the women.

Flight tickets are given to the women in the last minute. Since it is strictly forbidden to speak about the initiation, women do not tell their family, friends or partners about the invitation or where they are going. Often going away for weeks and months at a time.

When they arrive in Paris, they are picked up by chauffeurs. They are disguised and blindfolded so that they cannot recall the locations of the their stays later on.

“We arrived at the airport. Then some guy came to pick us up from there. He then took us into this house, a big house. On the way there, we had to keep on these opaque- I mean, these super darkened sunglasses through which you couldn’t see anything, and we had hats on as well. And we weren’t quite told why that was.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“.. A driver picked me up, made me wear a hat and sunglasses so I couldn’t be recognized”
Alina, Former MISA member

“We were told that that they were doing this so we couldn’t tell anybody where we’d been and therefore wouldn’t get into trouble”
Cristina, Former MISA memeber
“Yeah, so when we arrived at that house, taking away our passports and mobile phones was the first thing they did.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“I was in an apartment where there were at least 15 of us, at most we got to more than 20, we couldn’t get out of the house until we were taken out by the drivers who would again make us wear the hats and glasses”
Cristina, Former MISA memeber


The House

Yoga school MISA owns several different estates in Paris.

While staying in Paris, dozens of young women from Romania and other European countries are taken to a house.

There, they are practically held as prisoners. Their belongings are thoroughly searched, their passports and mobile devices are confiscated. Contact with the outside world is forbidden, with the exception of one phone call to parents, once a week, under strict monitoring. If any terminology like “yoga” or “Paris” is mentioned, the call would be cut.

Staff under Bivolaru live in the house to monitor the women.

Gregorian Bivolaru, also known as Grieg, doesn’t usually live where the women live.



During their stay in the house, which could stretch from days to weeks, the women are subjected to intense manipulation and coercion tactics.

The women are instructed to stand while their photos and videos are taken, and take vows of secrecy on their health and spiritual evolution. They are told exactly when to sleep, down to the exact minute, and forced to watch porn and listen to recordings of Bivolaru having sex with other women.

Any attempt to speak out about concerns are considered “satanic”, and are publicly shamed. They have to sign declarations to accept punishments ranging from: shaving their heads, and recieving humiliating cavity searches.

While at the same time, they are frequently reassured that they are doing everything of their own free will and would never be forced to do anything.

Some women were told to pay for the flight and accommodation should they cancel the invitation.


“And some of the girls who got there, they weren’t very taken with the idea of sleeping with this man, I don’t blame them, I didn’t want to either, he’s old, he’s a bit on the disgusting side really, with the long slimy hair and the long nails…”
Roxana Former MISA member

“There is manipulation, you believe that things you are doing are good, you think sleeping with Bivolaru is good, you believe lying about sleeping or not sleeping with him, or about meeting him is good. Because you are being told that you do it to protect him, to protect yourself as ignorant people can’t understand the things that you experience.”
Cristina, Former MISA memeber

“And he lived in this one room apartment. – And it was very very warm, and I’m not sure, I’m thinking maybe 40 degrees Celsius, or something like that, it was impossibly hot. And I was starting to feel a bit dizzy and there was a strong scent of mint in the air.”
Roxana Former MISA member

“On the shelves, there were vibrators and erotic accessories and things like that. – When we arrived there, Grieg was having sex with some other woman, and we had to wait for them to be done. Then he let us inside.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student


Bivolaru’s Apartment

The women would be summoned to Bivolaru’s apartment any time during the day and night. They are taken to another apartment for the initiation.

Again, they would have to wear the dark glasses and be driven away by the same drivers.

Once they arrive, they are left waiting in the entrance hall along with the other girls.


The Initiation

The women are offered drinks with unknown contents before going into the initiation. Some women have reported impaired states of clarity.

The initiation can last several hours. During which, the women are asked to go through different sexual positions, as well as anal sex and to drink his urine. He excercises total control during the initiation, and if the woman make any errors, he berates them and becomes very aggresive.

No condoms are used during the initiation.

There have been claims of women catching sexual disease after being in the initiation. Bivolaru has publicly rebuked these claims.

“That first of all, the way that Grieg touched me, it really hurt. Then, he got me to do things which I didn’t want to do at all, because you don’t say no to an authority figure like that. And in addition to that, I was somehow still thinking that I’m supposed to trust him and believe what he says, because he’s so wise and “godly”. – Well, Grieg asked me then, if I like to pleasure men orally. To which I replied, that I don’t enjoy it much at all. – Then, I was nearly choking during that, because he handled me in a very rough way. And at that point, I, like… the attempt ended then, because I couldn’t breathe. He didn’t realize I was choking, I had to sort of tear myself from his grip. – And then he told me off for being stubborn, stupid and a lazy slacker, because I wasn’t able to complete this initiation.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“Then, I was really broken up about the experience, I mean, what happened at Grieg’s, and didn’t feel like talking about it at all, not in the slightest. But I was forced to be in my underpants and tell about what happened, on tape. And I did talk, then, – like, when… if I got another chance, I’d try harder, harder and more. And wouldn’t, like, give up like that again…Then we were supposed to write a note… or rather, copy one… which said, among other things, that I have been here willingly, I have gotten gifts from Grieg and I haven’t been forced to do anything. – I still remember, when I was writing it, [I thought that] I certainly don’t agree with all this.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student
“And I was still crying when I left that place and I was feeling horrible, horrible, the driver didn’t really care that much or if he did he didn’t really say anything, and I got back to the apartment and the girls wanted me to share my experience.”
Roxana Former MISA member



After the initiation, the women are driven back to the house.

Before they get to rest, they are forced to make a positive testimonial in front of a video recorder, naked, about the wonderful experience they have just undergone.

Negative testimonials are rejected and they are not let go until they have given a positive one.


The Bubble Bursts

It usually takes some time for the women to digest their experience.

Many women choose to not break the vow and stay in the school. A few women choose to go to the police.

Gregorian Bivolaru and his supporters have remained completely silent about what goes on in Paris. In the Finnish case, the documentary team contacted Natha Finland’s representatives to offer them a chance to answer questions. The interview was never done, because their terms were not met.

To this day, Bivolaru is still luring women to Paris. He is still wanted by Finnish and Romanian authorities.

“And I tried to see him as my spiritual master and I couldn’t, and it kind of broke me in half.” – – – Mentally I was going through these horrible loops trying to see, trying to understand and trying to figure things out and I was going just down, I was getting worse and worse and depressed and panic attacks and…”
Roxana Former MISA member

“Well, actually after that trip, I went… I left to North for a couple of weeks, that’s where I’m from. And there I told one of my friends about this. I mean, like, I somehow had to tell what had happened. And my friend got me thinking about all this in a new way.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“I had, about a year after that experience, a really bad psychological meltdown. Even then I couldn’t make the connection between my experiences, the breakdown and that… like, really severe depression which was triggered in me at that time.”
Reeta, Former Natha Finland Student

“I was lying down on my yoga mat during one point, and I felt entirely lost and broken and I didn’t know what to believe. – – – And I was just lying there on my back, and I said Enough. And when I said enough I just felt a wave of anger coming from deep within me, it was this horrible, horrible anger, I’d never felt anything like it in my life.”
Roxana Former MISA member



In Finland, Reetta isn’t the only Finnish victim. At least twenty Finnish women have been taken to be initiated by Bivolaru. Some of them have been to Paris several times.
In addition to Finns, young women from Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Russia and, naturally, from Romania, have been transported for Bivolaru to abuse.

Official statement from Natha Finland says “Natha teaches classical tantra, eroticism as a spiritual path, or how to harness the creative energies of eroticism for your spiritual growth. Before everything, it emphasizes love as a necessary prerequisite for practicing tantra, and also as a certain goal to strengthen love.”

Trafficking in persons: The recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt or persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.
United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime

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