John McAfee: Anti-virus king turned relational yoga inventor talks latest endeavor (or prank?)
|McAfee at play.|
JM: It's mostly hatha yoga in static poses -- like Iyengar yoga. People find it more interesting to watch. We are trying to do the same thing with weight training, where you sit in an easy chair, they serve coffee or juice, and you watch people lift weights. There is a scientific basis that it will affect your actions throughout the day -- that you may lift a chair later rather than just scooting it across the floor -- and there will be an increase in muscle mass and a decrease in body fat.
We have discovered that activities with large-scale movements (involving the whole body, for example) lend themselves more readily to observational techniques. Small-scale movements, such as typing, provide limited results. This is why we had no success in teaching people to play the piano by having them watch concert pianists at work.
WW: Who do you picture as your target audience?
JM: Anyone who would like to watch yoga to improve flexibility, increase muscle mass and decrease fat. Actually, it's the younger people who take it; the older people tend to think it's hogwash. About 80 percent of our clients are between 18 and 25.
WW: How many clients do you have?
JM: Eight hundred as of last week. We are opening studios across the mainland as we speak.
WW: What does an observational yoga studio look like?
JM: The largest is a converted warehouse where we have an elevated stage, soft lighting and easy chairs so you can lay back and put your feet up, and we have four servers who serve juice, water and coffee. No food -- although we are thinking of adding food.
WW: How long do people come for?
JM: An hour and a half.
WW: What is the most popular time of day?
JM: At the end of the day, undoubtedly. We stopped doing classes in the mid-morning because no one came. Our earliest starts at 5:30 in the morning and our last class is at 8 at night.
WW: What other ventures are you involved in?
JM: I am an old man, and I am happy just to dabble in little things here and there. I have a water taxi service that carries people up and down the coast. It runs 24 times each day. I also have a sports pilot business, and a few coffee shops -- odds and ends.
WW: Do you think you will spend the rest of your life in Belize?
JM: I believe I will. I think most of my energy is going into the observational yoga and the observational weight training.
WW: Tell me about your days in Belize.
JM: I don't have an average day; every day varies. I live in different places around the country. If I am in Orange Walk, it is an overgrown rainforest and a totally different environment from San Pedro, which is on the ocean. I try not to become a habit unto myself, so I vary my location, I vary my activity.
WW: What do you think about the idea of yoga and intellectual property?
JM: I don't believe in intellectual property. Number one, when I started my anti-virus software, I put on the package: "Please steal this software." What is intellectual property? It came from combining all the ideas that are in your head; it came from other people. I don't think we own any ideas.
But I don't insist on my opinion. Here in Belize, for example, there is no intellectual-property law because the government doesn't believe in it. If, in fact, Belize changes that, that's fine with me. I can live under any system.
Continue for more of our Q&A with John McAfee.