About Be Scofield

Be Scofield is an author and prominent cult reporter whose work is cited by the New York Times, People, Washington Post, Daily Mail, CBC, and more. She's been interviewed for stories in Playboy, Roling Stone, and The Guardian. Her reporting has led to the original HBO series Love Has Won, the season premiere of the Dr. Phil show, an episode on a Netflix series, a VICE doc, and international news coverage.

Her book Hunting Lucifer: One Reporter's Search for Cults and Demons chronicles her journey hunting cults and gurus across America and the world. Three years in a row an astrologer sent her to locations on her birthday to improve her year only to discover a cult at each location. Be was the first to expose Love Has Won, Bentinho Massaro, Teal Swan, Agama Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, and many more cults.

Be is also known for her in-depth investigation into the Kristal Reisinger story. In 2021 she moved into her former apartment and spent 4 months researching her death. The result was a 5-part series that explored the people and events surrounding her death.

In December 2017 Be infiltrated Bentinho Massaro’s cult and published an article that went viral called “Tech Bro Guru: Inside the Sedona Cult of Bentinho Massaro.” In two weeks it got 200,000 views. 18 days after it was published he fled Sedona and went into hiding. One of his followers committed suicide 9 days after the story was published while he was on Bentinho’s week-long retreat. Barcroft TV and VICE each produced short documentaries about Bentinho as a result of her story. Playboy magazine also ran an article about him.

In July 2018 Be exposed a rape and sexual assault scandal at Agama Yoga in Thailand. Having been in place for over 20 years the school was one of the largest yoga training centers in the world with thousands of students coming through each year. Four days after the expose was published, the founder, Swami Vivekananda Saraswati, and the other 3 accused teachers fled the island and went into hiding. In September The Guardian ran a front-page story about Agama Yoga which got 300,000 views in the first week. Over 50 stories appeared in over 20 countries worldwide. Agama Yoga shut down in September.

Be’s articles exposing sexual abuse in the modern tantra scene have reached global audiences and put several prominent teachers into retirement. She wrote an in-depth story on a tantric sex cult in Europe called The New Tantra and exposed teachers Andrew Barnes, TJ Bartel and Shantam Nityama as sexual abusers.

Exactly one year to the date after Be went to Sedona and discovered Bentinho she went to Orcas Island and stumbled upon the story of Carla Jean Shaffer, a woman who mysteriously died under suspicious circumstances 13 years ago. She may have been leaving a cult called “Children of the Light” at the time. The article uncovers clues, facts and information that help shed light on her mysterious death. Story: Aaravindha Himadra and the Mysterious Orcas Island Death of Carla Jean Shaffer.

Be also published a comprehensive examination of the claims by spiritual leader Teal Swan. The article “The Gucci Guru: Inside Teal Swan’s Posh Cult” went viral and ended up being covered on the front page of the Daily Mail where it received hundreds of thousands of views. The article led to significant coverage of Swan in the media, including an article on VICE and a podcast series called The Gateway.

Be started writing as an intern at Rabbi Michael Lerner’s Tikkun Magazine in 2008. When they launched a blog she jumped at the opportunity and slowly built a large audience with her provocative articles about atheism, spirituality, religion, and social change. She became the most-read blogger for the Tikkun Daily blog before leaving to start Decolonizing Yoga.

Decolonizing Yoga was founded in 2013 as a way to bridge the gap between modern spirituality and social change. The site pioneered the modern movement towards inclusivity of race, class, gender, and justice in spirituality and yoga.

Be holds a B.A. in Psychology/Philosophy from Warren Wilson College. She has done graduate coursework in Postcolonial Anthropology and holds a Master of Divinity from Starr King School for the Ministry in the Unitarian Universalist tradition with emphases in women’s studies in religion, sacred dance, African-American religion, and Buddhism. Be specializes in the radical teachings of Dr. King and has taught a graduate course called “Dr. King and Empire: How MLK Jr. Resisted War, Capitalism and Christian Fundamentalism” at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley.