Mayor Gavin Newsom has officially declared today “Ilchee Lee Day” to honor a man many consider a “cult leader.”

CultNews has previously reported about Ilchee Lee and his organization know as “Dahn Yoga.”

Lee and Dahn are currently being sued in New York for wrongful death by the family of Julia Siverls, a 41-year-old professor of education at Queensborough Community College that died during a Dahn retreat.

But according to Mayor Newsom’s proclamation the man some say is promoting a “dangerous con” should be lauded and acclaimed as “a leading philosopher and brain educator.”

However, others that have looked into Dahn with a bit more due diligence have described Lee’s so-called “brain education,” as more like “brainwashing” and “mind control.”

One former Dahn student in Las Vegas told a local TV news team, “I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat. I felt like I was drugged.” She was later hospitalized for three days. Her treating physician told a reporter that she was mentally abused and suffered from post traumatic stress disorder.

Ilchee Lee seems to be following in the footsteps of fellow South Korean and purported “cult leader” Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the founder of the Unification Church.

Both Lee and Moon’s followers see their leaders as messianic figures here to “save the world.”

But what these men seem to do best is save money.

Moon has built a multi-billion dollar financial empire that includes the Washington Times and United Press International.

Lee now controls millions of dollars in real estate holdings, including the Sedona, Arizona retreat where Julia Siverls died and another retreat property recently purchased in Ellenville, New York.

There are reportedly 147 Dahn Centers in the United States.

Gavin NewsomDahn’s Web site is touting Gavin Newsom’s proclamation as apparent proof that Ilchee Lee is the great man his devotees imagine. And Dahn members will undoubtedly celebrate today.

But San Francisco’s mayor, known at times for his poor judgement, seems to have made another stupid mistake.

After all groups called “cults” are nothing new to Newsom. He once dated a Scientologist, actress Sofia Milos star of the TV series CSI Miami. And that brief romance included attending a Scientology fund-raising event.

It seems like Mayor Newsom may not only be a public servant, but also a public relations pawn, used by one “cult” after another.


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