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Fellowship of Friends Discussion, part 36 May 23, 2008

Posted by Pavel in Uncategorized.
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Welcome to the newest addition to the Fellowship of Friends Discussion.

For previous parts of the discussion please click on home and scroll down, or move to the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, or to AnimamRecro for the very beginning. For a more organized reading check out The Fellowship of Friends WikiSpace.

The largest meeting point for former and current members of the Fellowship of Friends is the Greater Fellowship, you can sign up for the Greater Fellowship website and connect with mostly former members of the Fellowship of Friends, as well as: some current members, family members of former/current members, and others interested in the Fourth Way here.

For sites in Russian and Italian, click http://fofway.narod.ru/ and http://laliberastrada.blogspot.com/ respectively.

For more information check Rick Ross and Steven Hassan.

This is where you can find the website of the Fellowship of Friends.

If you decide to interact as well as digest, this is where you can start.

And as always (and above else), enjoy and have fun.

Excessive abuse, personal attacks, as well as deliberate attempts to unmask people taking part in the discussion will result in a warning followed by a ban from the discussion.

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Comments

1. WhaleRider - May 23, 2008

I woke up this morning thinking about how repeating the “30 commands” is such a futile, never-ending effort to control the monkey minds of the FOF followers.

Then I am reminded of how some hunters in the jungle capture a monkey. You put a grapefruit in a pot slightly larger than the grapefruit and tie the pot to a tree. The monkey sees the fruit, reaches into the pot, grabs hold of the grapefruit, but then won’t let go of it. It also can’t pull its hand out of the pot or run off. The hunter releases the monkey by tickling them under the armpit. (The idea of capturing a monkey in this manner is to have them for dinner.)

The pot is the FOF, the grapefruit is the ‘divine present’, and it’s no wonder that humor is banned. (Spiderman is having you for dinner tonight….)

I’d just settle for the present, a good laugh each day, and my freedom.

Since my inner Imam seems to be off on a pilgrimage lately, my inner yogi was also wondering this fine morning, “Hmmm….only FOUR wordless breaths???!!! An experienced yogi in meditation chanting a simple Sanskrit mantra to quiet the mind for an hour may take as many as FIFTY or more wordless breaths in one sitting to experience the blue pearl of kundalini shakti.”

2. veramente - May 23, 2008

How about beginning with a right brain activity, if I get the first post : )

From Jack Kerouac
Fragments of “Scripture of the Golden Eternity”

51
There’s no system of teaching and no reward for teaching the golden eternity, because nothing has happened. In the golden eternity teaching and reward havent even vanished let alone appeared. The golden eternity doesnt even have to be perfect. It is very silly of me to talk about it. I talk about it simply because here I am dreaming that I talk about it in a dream already ended, ages ago, from which I’m already awake, and it was only an empty dreaming, in fact nothing whatever, in fact nothing ever happened at all. The beauty of attaining the golden eternity is that nothing will be acquired, at last.

59
Cats yawn because they realize that there’s nothing to do.

60
Up in heaven you wont remember all these tricks of yours. You wont even sigh “Why?” Whether as atomic dust or as great cities, what’s the difference in all this stuff. A tree is still only a rootdrinker. The puma’s twisted face continues to look at the blue sky with sightless eyes, Ah sweet divine and indescribable verdurous paradise planted in mid-air! Caitanya, it’s only consciousness. Not with thoughts of your mind, but in the believing sweetness of your heart, you snap the link and open the golden door and disappear into the bright room, the everlasting ecstasy, eternal Now. Soldier, follow me! – there never was a war. Arjuna, dont fight! – why fight over nothing? Bless and sit down.

3. Mick Danger - May 23, 2008

Sure, Princess Bobby is a lovable guy, but would you trust him alone with your children?
Happy Birthday Bob Dyan – May 24th.
Verses 5 – 8 “Masters of War”, dedicated to her highness:

You’ve thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatenin’ my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain’t worth the blood
That runs in your veins

How much do I know
To talk out of turn
You might say that I’m young
You might say I’m unlearned
But there’s one thing I know
Though I’m younger than you
Even Jesus would never
Forgive what you do

Let me ask you one question
Is your money that good
Will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul

And I hope that you die
And you death’ll come soon
I will follow your casket
On a pale afternoon
And I’ll watch while you’re lowered
Down to your death bed
And I’ll stand o’er you grave
‘Till I’m sure that you’re dead.

On a lighter note:
“Someday, everthing is gonna be different…”

4. Another Name - May 23, 2008

Dear Nigel,

For dopamine and the four brain hormones I think The Edge Effect from Eric Braverman is an excellent book.

Amino acid study is worth a try. I have seen several people taking 5HTP instead of anti depressants. The advantage is that after 1/2 year you do not need the 5 HTP daily as your body will increase its possibility to make self.

The diet cure from Julia Ross regarding info on amino acids.

I myself study the psychological meaning behind illnesses and that info is….beyond words.

Also I am sure that different things work for different people. I myself do not do well with medications…just does not feel well, I can not take for example lidocain for numbing at the dentist. I do not see the advantage.

Never combine anti depressant with amino acids. You first have to wean of from your regular medicine…..

Also be sure to have enough protein and vitamin in your daily food intake. A lack of vitamin or Calcium can cause depression. Your rain needs many different proteins to four the four main brain hormones, dopamine, Gaba, acetylcholine and serotonin. Eating for example a lot of corn syrup, Macdonalds, and soda’s can decrease the necessary intake of vitamins and minerals and can effect your brain chemistry.

5. somebody - May 23, 2008

I found this information on wikipedia. Did anyone heard about or met these guys?

“Willem Nyland was, after Jeanne de Salzmann, Gurdjieff’s closest pupil; he was appointed for an undisclosed special task by Gurdjieff in the USA. At present, Mr. Nyland’s groups exist in small concentrations across the United States, most notably at two locations, one termed “The Barn” in rural New York, and another termed “The Land” in Northern California. These groups are thought to be unique amongst recognized Gurdjieff groups, in that they are the only groups to have recorded their original meetings, resulting in an audio library in excess of many thousands of hours featuring almost exclusively talks by an actual first-hand student of Gurdjieff.”

6. elena - May 23, 2008

Dearest Uno,
I don’t think it is for me to write about the boys picnics because I’ve heard so little about them that it is difficult to have a clear picture but since you seem to know it well why don’t you put the weight that I don’t? It still comes all from Robert as you also mention and that is where I see connections strongly. The whole place stinks with infra-sex and all those made up fashion guys think life will let them get away with murder. Too young to understand and that is where I am concerned and will continue to be concerned even after your kind post. They are simply, for me, not old enough to know what they are doing and being placed in a situation in which for the exchange of sex they have limitless power within the bubble. They are responsible as people between their twenties and thirties can be, the most difficult period of life for me, but not responsible like Robert, Girard, Linda, Kevin, Abraham, and the hundred other inner circle adults that thrive on allowing the Fellowship to continue.

“I used to be very ‘nervous’ (fervor-ish) for Robert’s ‘boys’, only to realize later that the nervousness towards others lives was an armoring device keeping my consciousness and conscience apart from one another, i.e., feeling RIGHT to fight for the injustice suffered by others without any idea of the ‘how’ it was specifically me being so ritualistic in this endeavor and not everyone on the planet: live, swim, breathe and eat your own shit for one night (or more) and you can gain ‘right perspective’ on ’smelly things’…
Being sent to hell is one thing, going there voluntarily, well, it’s a whole different snowball…
Uno, there are two areas here. What you are calling “nervousness” is actually concern and your twisting it into nervousness is your make up. How do you expect to become a serious Shaman without concern in your own arena? Why can’t you see that this is mine? Nevertheless I’m happy to take the photograph in another context.

The other area here is that if going to hell makes you think that you are now better than others because of it then you haven’t been to hell enough and it is time to revisit it without ayahuasca or any other help. Ayahuasca hell is not even close to your personal hell, looked and found through your own effort. But this is all vanity, a contest of who’s been in hell more than whom and who has the authority to photograph another. It saddens me to think that our precious session would come to this.
Your next paragraph confirms the weakness and what you call second line is clearly not what we worked together, is it? Was that not second line too? Or do you think only you worked?

My dear Uno, what do you want me to do with you? Listen to yourself carefully: “I just ‘hope’ that we can align ourselves by our own autonomous crooked spine (I am working on my back too BTW) and not think ourselves ’straightened out’ by having voluntarily set someone else’s ‘disks’ who was just reaching down to pick up a dime for someone’s thought…
__________________” Are you not trying to do to me exactly what you are preaching against? Straighten me out? And love, does it look like I hide my conditions, how much more of a nudist can one get?

As for boring many here with the intellectual, it has often been said that the blog gets too intellectual for people’s taste and I continue to expect nothing but to bore those who would rather not indulge in such explorations. In fact it is clear that the things I find interesting, very few others care for and there is nothing wrong with that. We each have to take care of what we like and need.

As for your “my being boring” love, it would be to your great benefit if you learn to read carefully and distinguish between what is said about a subject and what is said about a person. You seem to have great difficulty separating a theme from a being and tend to concentrate on the person’s being generally to undermine them a great deal at the beginning of the blog and less strongly now. This is worth looking at because it reveals aspects of our subjectivity and objectivity. False personality will always tend to undermine others one way or another because that is how it keeps the sense of its being superior. It concentrates on the persons weakness rather than their strength. We’ve done that here enough to not recognize it haven’t we? It has to put others down to be. It picks from a post fairly insignificant things and is not able or willing to look at what is truly of value in the post for the person writing it. In that way the status quo keeps the issue and the person unaddressed. It is a good thing that what matters to the author is that s/he gets it out of her system because then s/he can move on.

In your post to me what is truly of value is that in my insulting Fellowship members for being brainwashed, fools, sick, there is impatience and anger and frustration and a sense of judging and my frustration and anger are not the issue so I take your point, but in your posts to me, you seem to be unable to grasp what is really being said, to me or to many. You concentrate on the person and put yourself in the “Shaman, I know where you are at position” and take the carpet out of their feet rather than seriously consider what they are presenting, giving them a firm ground of respect and debating what they are saying not just who or where they happen to be psychologically. (I did enjoy how you presented the idea of iboga to Nigel though.)

Having said all that to you, this is not only something you do, we all seem to do it in different degrees and situations but some do it remarkably less on the blog. Some, because they gave up trying to establish their hierarchical command over this madness and some because they are beautifully refined and well mannered and simply don’t deal with these things in public. Isn’t it interesting? Who but vanity would want to deal with these things in public? In as much as we are also playing “public”, it is alright for me if we deal with them in public. I much prefer that, than the hierarchic snobbery that does not do it publicly but loves gossiping in private about other people and never gives them a chance to share with and remain in the security of a like minded group of people. So thank you for the photograph. I would appreciate it if you one day look at what I am saying more than me, no matter how fascinating you might find me!

Ton,
Thank you for your reply. I thoroughly agree with your view on the Steiner Cult. So sad, such great knowledge for such a poor phenomenon. I’ve heard they even get quite racial up in Europe. Just like the Fellowship with its knowledge. Nevertheless great authors have appeared in that tradition and are working as best they can with their own understanding. It is far more open than the Fellowship or other cults, wouldn’t you say? I do not know them enough though so I’d appreciate your deeper view.
I’m sorry I disagree with you about the box that you call the system. It is one thing for me to not use the Fellowship interpretation of the System and a different one to use the System to convey ideas. As I just used, “false personality” in my note to Uno. I would have to invent another system to convey these ideas easily and there is no reason for me to spend time doing that. There are many good systems out there to invent any more and this one just happens to be the one I treaded. When I am more inspired you’ll get the same ideas more poetically but in the meantime, it is alright to simply allow familiar thought-concepts and processes to circle around.
I would have much enjoyed if you’d joined the exploration on Anthroposophy as a Fourth Way current in life, an immensely valuable at that, no matter how much the cult proceeds at the same time. It seems to show that that is the pattern of our times in which the beast runs parallel to the beauty not only in institutions but in people. As we get older we seem to become a great deal more tolerant about it. I wish I could do this with the Fellowship, but that will happen when those inside no longer matter to me. I struggle against that.

I was thinking of areas that could be used to continue the beating of the horse and one was a hundred students, I mean ex-followers, standing by the pyle with the names of those they still love and a sign of I love you. Girard, Mary… I love you. Each quietly standing there five meters apart in a line all the way down rices-crossing road before the Sunday meeting. But there is a long road from talking to acting, as the petition proved.

Nigel, I wait patiently!

Arthur, Not playing the game is what has really helped us.
It is so tempting to go insane. Sanity requires courage.
People who conform with the status quo, stand up for it and close the door on others are far from healthy.

7. lauralupa - May 23, 2008

ton 281

I can resonate with what you say, since I lived a very similar inner experience a few years ago, when I was participating in my local Buddhist community. After going to meditation classes and lectures from Lamas for a while, I slowly started to become more involved (after being kindly requested), doing volunteer work as an interpreter and translator. But I kept having a hard time connecting on a deep level with any of the people involved. I was always too leery of what I perceived as a pervasive cultish, superstitious mentality. A lot of subtle “us against them” thought patterns and personality worship. The interesting fact in this case was that the Tibetan Lamas didn’t seem to encourage those kinds of attitudes at all. They were really doing their thing, just teaching some incredibly profound ideas, trying their best to communicate them to us weird western people. But most students, at least in the beginning, tend to become followers instead of real practitioners (really putting teaching into practice). There’s generally a lot of insecurity, a big need to feel that “we are the best” and “our teacher is the best” and “this is the best way”. After a while the general atmosphere “got to me”, and in the end I just drifted away (not from the Dharma, but from the Sangha).
One cult is enough for a lifetime.

8. nigel harris price - May 23, 2008

Hi Elena
Was going to blog you sooner but had to sort out tools-to-different-work-locations logistics for my teaching/fabricating work today because of the bomb-blast in Exeter yesterday, which disrupted the whole city center. Also, a blog last night failed because I think Ton and I ‘cross-blogged’ the system and mine became lost. I wanted to say that I am starting to write a book about my encounters of at least 14 years in length with the mental health ‘maze’, entitled “The Years Between”. You will have to wait for me to complete the draft and have it published by a local charity and got into distribution. The venture into teaching my craft-form is a simple one, given a ‘break’ by a wonderful man named Mike Higgins at East Devon College, where I gained my Cerificate in Post-Compulsory Education. The ‘working years’ of my craft-form can be found in short form on my website – http://www.apma-uk.co.uk. But I think you mean my formative years and memories of growing up that interest you? And I thank you for that, because it leads directly into my predicted role by Walt Whitman “Song of the Answerer”, part of which states:-

‘He puts things in their attitudes,
He puts today out of himself with plasticity and love,
He places his own city, times, reminiscences, parents, brothers and sisters, associations, employment and politics, so that the rest never shame them afterward, nor assume to command them’.

(You could also read Isiah 42 [42 is symbolic of Shakespeare and Whitman working most closely with me as Guardian Angels, and the Remainder protecting the Faithful and Righteous] and see whether the two compliment each other)

“May I with right and conscience make this claim?” (Henry V)…..Nigel.

9. nigel harris price - May 23, 2008

Funny thing about 8 – an AVATAR! (Earthbound Deity). And lying horizontally he is Infinity. You can probably guess my password on my Absolute Email ISP Site!?…..Nigel.

10. nigel harris price - May 23, 2008

Dear Lauralupa (7)
I have often wondered why Western (religious) teachings go for the Finality Clause – Heaven/Home or Infinite Oblivion, whereas the Eastern Doctrines go with the Birth, Death, Rebirth, Beginningless, Endlessness ‘touch’. Actually, that is exactly what my Celtic heritage teaches – Iggdrassil – The World Tree – the Tree and the Root being one. How the Hell the Irish ever got brainwashed by the Roman Catholic doctrines, I have no idea! And the Luck of the Irish – now there’s a joke – potato-famine – and 600 years of English opression. Makes the Israeli/Palestinian conflict seem like a ‘drop in the ocean’. This will stir things up…………………………….Nigel.

11. Joe Average - May 23, 2008

About the new heights of sublime artistry to be found on the Fellowship’s property, perhaps RB, tired of 37 years of easy conquests, has taken on the challenge implied in the phrase “so hot he/she would give a statue a hard-on”
He may also have been on the advisory board which constructed this bridge:
http://greaterfellowship.ning.com/photo/photo/show?id=799715%3APhoto%3A2623&context=user

12. lauralupa - May 23, 2008

Hi nigel, thanks for your messages.
Sorry but can’t help you with the endorphins vs dopamine question, since the info I provided had been written by someone else. I’m actually very inept at chemistry and all that stuff. When I was 19 I got all psyched about studying the functioning of the mind/brain, so I thought “what better place to start that with the basics? I’ll study biology, the science of life.” As soon as I took a first glimpse at my chemistry textbook I understood it was completely beyond my abilities. And what followed, I guess, is a cautionary tale.
My lazy mind carried me away from science and into the grip of the opium of the masses! (my father was deeply convinced of this and it made him suffer a great deal. Now I can see his point.)

But I digress, I mostly wanted to repost the following, in case you missed it

269. Allan S – May 22, 2008

Elena

Your last post inspired me to this, why I do not know…

In front of me is this incredible thing called the body. Everything happens through it and yet I am personally very rarely aware that it is there. If I listen closely and sometimes even when I don’t, it makes its presence known to me. In some bizarre way this simple realisation presents a possibility I-conscious-of my body. How simple. Whilst this may only represent a certain degree of consciousness I remember many times Robert telling me that I should forget about becoming conscious this lifetime. Indeed he often said “not this lifetime Dear”. I used to think, “How dreadful! Surely this cannot be true, if so what am I doing here?” In a terribly negligent way this man convinced my mind that this would be so. When I read anything from Robert Burton I often sense this familiar taste of “wanting to believe”. I can see this passing through my mind almost as though my mind were fishing for something to latch on. Now however I do not bite and the association passes…

I now believe the reality is very different and that consciousness is very much a possibility, and yes not just through the 4th way. I personally like the 4th way, it suits me and yet there is the feeling that I am going through a terrible de-programming so that I can hear the same old 4th way ideas in a new and fresher way. I think Gurdjieff himself talked about this “de-programming” but I do not recall the context. For me there are a lot of wrong connections that need to be broken and I do not find it easy. It most certainly requires me to disregard everything I “learned” about spiritual development in the FoF and directly from Robert Burton, not that there was much from the later.

Allan.

“not this lifetime Dear”
Can you fully appreciate the despicable cruelty of this disgrace of a man? I mean, once you are fully conscious of the fact that “he himself” is not a conscious being?
Simply because that is not what he ever truly wanted for himself or for anyone else. What a creep.

13. arthur - May 23, 2008

“I remember when, I remember, I remember when I lost my mind.
There something so pleasant about that phase.
Even your emotions had an echo
In so much space.

And when you’re out there
without care,
Yeah, I was out of touch
But it wasnt because I didnt know enough
I just knew too much

Does that make me crazy
Does that make me crazy
Does that make me crazy
probaby

And I hope you’re having the time of your life
But think twice, that’s my only advise
Come on now, who do you , who do you, who do you think who do think you are
Ha ha ha bless your soul
You really think you’re in control

Well, I think you’re crazy
I think you’re crazy
Just like me

MY HEROES HAD THE HEART TO LOSE THEIR LIVES OUT ON A LIMB
And all I remember is thinking, I WANT TO BE LIKE THEM
Ever since I was little, ever since I was little it looked like fun

And it’s no coincidence I’ve come
And I can die when I’m done

Maybe I’m crazy
Maybe you’re crazy
Maybe we’re crazy
Probably”

Poet and Philosopher Gnarls Barkley

14. God Laughing - May 24, 2008

from Allan.

“not this lifetime Dear”
Can you fully appreciate the despicable cruelty of this disgrace of a man?

Yes, RB’s power and dominance uses this sentence to place himself way above you!

Recently saw a documentary about Pimps in America,

One way to claim superiority is the outrages wardrobes,
pimps have. Expensive suits and shirts in insane colors, jewelry, hats.
It’s part of the “I am higher, bigger, smarter, better, more special
than thou, pimp ass swagger ” game.

Does this not remind you also of Robert Burton?

15. unoanimo - May 24, 2008

Hello Elena ~

I cannot entirely with words explain what the intent was in my letter to you; as so many times before, you’re reading it as if it’s being written by someone you know far better than you know me, who this is, I do not know, though have some ideas; though these ‘ideas’ are not ‘posturing’ or me knowing more than you, they are simply intuitions… Maybe we’ll meet again some day and I can share them with you…

Yes, we can be mirrors for each other; the question is, in that big room where the two mirrors are facing each other, can we, as two people sitting behind the mirror looking out at a mirror reflection that cannot ‘see’ who it is on the other side, each of us being in one of the two compartments on each side of the room, get up, open the door and meet in the room?

The blog is an uncertain place; when I write to you, I also write to myself… I figure you know that, though wonder if there’s any empathy for such sketches and ‘other considerations’ of the heart sort, outside the box of what and how we left the FOF (?)

You’re right, I am excited about certain things that have changed my entire life, from the bottom up and visa versa: perhaps I need to take a break from sharing the sporadic fireworks that go off in the process of writing to you who inspire me to go deeper into my own injured feminine:

for me, when I spoke about ‘being in hell’ or ‘going there voluntarily’, these ‘points’ were not meant to contrast or belittle you in any way Elena… There’s being a Muse and being a Maid, I do not see you as a maid and I wonder if you’ve ever been a Muse (?)

It’s not easy to be forgiven… I have forgiven so many people in my life these days who still draw back and do not accept it, though, this is alright, the intent is there: once again, we’ve missed one another by a hair’s width… When I wrote those things, it was simply me penciling out for myself what it was that changed my ‘mind-trauma’ to my ‘heart-plumb’ in relation to Robert’s boys… And that was all: sometimes I like to write out what it was (to myself) that brought about a change from ignorance and judgment, to empathy and a different understanding of time in relation to how they will learn lessons and perhaps not… The ‘Alluding to Elena’ part is all yours my friend…

Anyway: do you really believe Elena, that after knowing what I know concerning your story that I would ever believe that you have not the same smoke rising from your wings as I? Writing is a catharsis for me and well, sometimes the ‘I’ becomes someone else’s, they adopt it as if I am alluding to them; that’s where writing on the blog is uncertain and gives all sorts of artistic license to make such calls…

Though, we keep writing so to write about what we meant to write about: yes, I can play the Devil’s advocate, though this is not what I was doing with you…

To me, the intro you wrote sorta apologizing for yourself as possibly being one who will bore people all summer long, to me, this touched my heart deeply and I simply asked you that question to take it out of the abstract (IMO) environment of the blog and back into yourself in relation to our connection as friends, to make its scale a little more manageable for me to try and understand how it is that you could suggest such a thing about yourself, who I sensed was someone who felt what she was writing would not ‘bore’… (?)

Perhaps I am totally wrong in grabbing the liquid quicksilver spirits that jump from the blog-mirror and dance them back into the dimension from where they came and should cease this mannerism (?) Who knows… I take chances, perhaps with the wrong people or spirits or place from myself: if it did not sometimes payoff by the millions in heart-monies, then, I would be throughly disenchanted: so, ok, I think I got your hint concerning certain lines that cannot be crossed; though I must admit that when it seems one has more permission to get to know someone after having already gotten to know them better through trial and error and you return right back to First Grade after having passed your Senior examinations, it sure seems a bit odd, though, alright, I am still going to probably stuff my green peas and jello in my milk carton after class.

I feel that I have tried to include myself in your struggles… Perhaps there is the key to all of this wild interaction between us: out here in the blog is ‘one place’, inside and really everything, another…

I really do not see my discussion posted to you as a photograph: in the FOF, photographs were ways we polished our armor, rarely did anyone ever give me one without asking me to take a picture of them photographing me, so, please consider that there’s a level of care beyond the FOF version of the fourth way… And this is not me assuming that you do not, I am just asking ‘is it possible in context to me and what we write…

I do know one thing for sure, had I said the same things (that I wrote on the blog in the context of conversation and eye contact) to you while sitting by a lakeside, I would never have gotten the response that you wrote to me, we would have resonated and you would immediately have known where my intonations and ‘language’ was going:

I wonder, really, do we respond to one another differently because we know (or subconsciously) know that 1000+ people a day are reading these entries and with this subtle sense of knowing we make personal-politics-statements and not heart-love (?)

And I am not saying that you Elena do; just that it’s possible, that something calms down in us when we know there are no witnesses, particularly strangers… It’s an idea and not a label: I am asking the question because I used to write to people individually with everyone else in mind except that one person, so, I know it can happen.

_________________

L.t.y.a.

16. elena - May 24, 2008

Nigel, I’m an ignorant concerning medications but I was lucky enough to come across the most decent shrink after I tried to commit suicide when I was looking for something to reduce the tremendous lows. After asking him for medications he told me that he had been the director and worked at the mental health clinic for twenty five years and had never once seen a patient get better from any medication. The only thing that he had seen that helped people was to talk and to be heard, which led him to psychoanalysis and stopped practicing psychiatry. He held me along for less than a year before he died early one morning before my session.

I have never taken any medication and spent the first two years after the intent walking slowly because if Ieven just walked fast that thing inside of me that had learnt the pleasure of killing me would get exited. I sat under a leaf for two years hoping it would get less angry. It was clear to me that it wasn’t me but it was not clear to me how to avoid becoming it. It took another almost twenty years, many already in the Fellowship to handle the fact that any time with enough depression it would be right there inviting me to leave this plane until I eventually learnt that I could suffer for months and not wish to die. That suffering didn’t kill anyone and that a great deal of suffering is simply fear of not being able to carry one’s own load. Life does not ask anyone to carry more than his own load unless one wishes to carry more.

Working with a friend who had tried to commit suicide three times, the last of which had happened two weeks before she came to live with us, we tried to put some order into the amount of medicine she took mostly by increasing her active life. It was a condition in her therapy that she get up early in the morning and go to bed early at night. It took many months for her to actually manage but by the time she left she was pretty balanced and taking less medication, working and making a little money.

My husband was also taking anti depressants when we got together. He was supposed to NEED them after the stroke. It was my condition that he stop taking them and he did. It worked! He did seem more relaxed and emotional even if we never had the opportunity to actually have fun. Fun is not a viable equation when you belong to the Fellowship Cult.

So I feel I have enough close hand experiences of not taking medicine to deal with ones monsters and it is by far the most rewarding struggle I have ever committed to.
Every kind of medicine, drug or even sacred plant when abused, acts at the cost of one’s I, heightening the experience for a short time but depressing the I for a long period. This is what I’ve seen in myself and many other people, including three friends who did succeed in committing suicide as we grew up in Colombia. I have close acquaintances who, like me, have taken four to six years in simply recovering a fairly stable state of not being always depressed after years of taking things without coming even close to what you would call an addict. Prolonged use of any drug not only alters the king of club’s functions, it alters one’s perception of one’s presence. Paranoia about the world outside becomes the standard state and a prolonged boredom overcomes one’s sense of life. When I met the workbooks and joined the Fellowship I spent two years working against boredom amongst other negative emotions. The lack of enthusiasm about being alive was pathetic for the side of myself that wanted to die but the side of myself that wanted to live, held to whatever I, no matter how small, still survived within. I can say today that it is alive enough today to be writing to you with the absolute conviction that anyone can recover their selves from no matter what drug or what depression if they trust themselves enough. We are each actually our own greatest company and when we actualize that reality we even become quite a good company to others. Each day you recover a little and knowing that you did gives one enough strength to attempt the next day’s struggle. When you least know it, there is no boredom. After a few years, less fear and if you combine that with not expressing negative emotions but swallowing them with the whole of your heart, then gratitude flourishes like a sunset in the middle of winter. And I mean negative emotions, not saying: Fuck the hell No to abuse with no matter what dressing.

We are precious beings Nigel, we are pearls in the deep Ocean and uncovering our own pearl by allowing it to know itself above the tremendous suffering our parents and teachers gifted us with and we tripled with stupidity, naivete and too much youth, allows the whole Ocean to turn turquoise blue. Then you can see all the translucent colours of fish, corals and light under the water. We are strong enough to carry our plays totally sober and the pride of doing so cannot be replaced by any fake state. Then life itself starts talking to you and it only knows how to talk about Beauty.

17. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

Dearest Elena
That was both brave and beautiful! But I think you have suffered mostly from uni-polar disorder – mine being bi-polar, which is my reason for taking the anti-psychotics and mood-stabilisers “Too much Love will kill you ” (Queen). I agree with you about the medication being a ‘buffer’. I actually think if I found a loving relationship with ‘the right woman’ (and I am not in a hurry – enough basic Joy at present with reuniting with my craft form in my Worklife – the FOF seemed to me for most people to be ‘The Afford’, how much money you could chuck at the School, not how much work on oneself- and when they mentioned Essence – Good Grief – they really meant Lifestyle!), I will try to wean myself off the High-Stoppers. I attempted suicide on my final day in the FOF, but C-Influence saved me through Cynthia Hill/Patrick/Hill, whose critical thinking faculty I have always admired, even though she is probably still being fed ‘prestige sandwiches’ (i.e. got a Role) by the FOF. The greatest of Love to you Elena…..Nigel.

18. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

Hi Elena
Just scrolled back up the blog. For my Advanced Secondary Level Examinations at High School I took Pure Mathematics, Applied Mathematics and Physical Science, the first of which was the only one I passed! Given a bum steer by my Vice-Principal. However, my mum managed to persuade my dad to fund my art-college education (I was always closest to my mum, whilst she was on this plane – she said to me, after I had been ‘rescued’ from the FOF:- “Those stupid people Nigel – they need you more than you need them”). What do you think…..Nigel.

19. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

“There can be only ONE” (8) – (Highlander, with Christopher Lambert)

20. arthur - May 24, 2008

Nigel,

Is Robert Earl Burton the Owner, Chieftain, Director, spiritual head of the Church of the Fellowship of Friends co-pastored by Asaf and G. Haven a Druid or Highlander?

21. Dream Catcher - May 24, 2008

Nigel and Elena,

Can’t you get together by email or visit one and other
and discus your disorders in private?

22. veronicapoe - May 24, 2008

It always amuses me when people make this kind of suggestion. One might equally suggest that the person making the objection not utilize the blog to satisfy the compulsive need to read every post.

23. elena - May 24, 2008

Dream Catcher, does it make you nervous that life for most people is not nearly as comfortable as you pretend it to be?
The Fellowship would surely make a decent bubble to you.

24. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

20 Arthur
A Druid – he kills Souls on the Alter…..Nigel.

25. elena - May 24, 2008

Thanks Uno for your post. Love to you.

Nigel, Your mother certainly understood more about it than we did! Of course the Fellowship needs us more than we need it. People give life to it even if all it gives back to them is dog training.

Dream Catcher, would you tell us what subjects you find agreeable to you so that we try to please you one day? Maybe you could come up with one of them and try to follow your own thread. No one is stopping you here. Maybe you are looking to be entertained? One usually has to pay for that and it is not cheap.

26. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

21 Dreamcatcher
Trouble is – there is healing on the blog for All Negative Memories. do you want to join in or just complain?!…..Nigel.

27. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

25 (symbolic of Full Understanding) – Elena
Be brave and keep on blogging! Real People will hear you, as I do…..Nigel.

28. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

Veronicapoe
Thank you for joing the Great Game Plan…..Nigel.

29. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

“And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he doeth shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so; but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgement, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the lord knoweth the way of the righteous; but the way of the ungodly shall perish”
(Psalm 1).

30. nigel harris price - May 24, 2008

Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in the holy place?
He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart, who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully..
He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
This is the generation of them that seek thy face.
(Psalm 24).

31. brucelevy - May 24, 2008

It’s getting a bit weird here.

32. elena - May 24, 2008

It is, thanks for the alarm Bruce.

Nigel love,

Although I don’t agree with Dream Catcher, it might be wise to try to keep all your posts in one maybe three times a day? We might be intruding in people’s space, giving it too much of a unidirectional feeling. Would you be willing to try something like that so that others can get their thread in and not feel that you keep jumping back to ours? Allow for a more multi-directional participation? Every voice is necessary and welcome here and we are in no kind of race. Your anxiety definitely comes through together with a great need to communicate. We are not going anywhere Nigel so we’ll continue to listen to you and yes, why don’t you write to me at ludoteka@succeed.net even if no one is looking at us? Would it take too much away from you? I know internet and all this is “free” but considering it is a public space when we impose our presence with this much compulsion we are not doing ourselves or others a favor. In fact, it is precisely because it is a public space that so much more consideration needs to be taken by individuals. That is the beauty of understanding being “civil” or “civilized”; it is the most demanding arena. Love to you Nigel, elena.

33. arthur - May 25, 2008

Elena (32),

Wow, you don’t need a degree to teach ‘humanities’. You are here on this blog and you are a ‘teacher’.

34. ton - May 25, 2008

elena, among other things, you wrote in 6:
“I thoroughly agree with your view on the Steiner Cult. So sad, such great knowledge for such a poor phenomenon. I’ve heard they even get quite racial up in Europe. Just like the Fellowship with its knowledge. Nevertheless great authors have appeared in that tradition and are working as best they can with their own understanding. It is far more open than the Fellowship or other cults, wouldn’t you say? I do not know them enough though so I’d appreciate your deeper view…. I would have much enjoyed if you’d joined the exploration on Anthroposophy as a Fourth Way current in life, an immensely valuable at that, no matter how much the cult proceeds at the same time. It seems to show that that is the pattern of our times in which the beast runs parallel to the beauty not only in institutions but in people.”

i acknowledge that steiner was a remarkable man. my introduction to his work occurred when i lived at renaissance working as a beekeeper where i read his lecture on bees given to the waldorf astoria factory workers sometime prior to ww2. i was “blown away” by the scope of thinking contained in this little book. in my personal interactions i try to distinguish the individual from the institution, especially if there is an apparent identification with the organization on the part of the individual. i try to serve as an “agent” working against “cultish” mindsets wherever, whenever i recognize it… and this type of thinking is pervasive throughout society in a whole host of forms… (in some of his latest posts “halftruth” -greg- made this point pertaining to the political arena. as for “the exploration on anthroposophy as a fourth way current…” in other circles of thought it would be put into different terms, i.e. “the fourth way as a anthroposophical current running through life…” it’s an example of perspective… the word “anthropos” means “man” or more generally “human” — and “sophia” means “wisdom” so the study of anthroposophy is considered to be a study of human wisdom. i contend that “human wisdom” comes in all different shapes, sizes, forms, colors, guises, creeds, philosophies, etc… and to limit such a study to what “steiner says” or ouspensky, or gurdjieff, or krishnamurti, or tolle, or the dali lama, and or anyone you care to name etc, etc… to limit and base any study on the words or ideas of an “authority figure” is simply that… limiting. i don’t buy it.

based on my own experience, it’s not as “sad” as you seem to think but that’s just my experience… like i said earlier, i steer clear of certain aspects and i have to feel that my own involvement as a teacher in a camphill school is at least an attempt to do something positive here on the physical plane… otherwise i would not be doing it… and the organization as such provides an avenue for those with the intention to do some good in the world as we know it… of course the road to hell is paved with just these sorts of intentions and it doesn’t always work as intended, but such is life and therein lie the lessons we have to learn. if you are really interested, i have written a number of pages reflecting on my work in the field of “curative education” which i would be glad to share with you but not here… it would probably bore to tears many of the readers here… otherwise, i encourage enjoyment of the freedom to think outside the box.

nigel, (and elena, this relates somewhat to the foregoing), i checked out your website and am impressed by what i see of your work… as a teacher of crafts myself, i would be interested to get any feedback you might have to offer along the lines of the “therapeutic” aspect of craft work. here is something i wrote several years ago for a course i attended:

“I hadn’t previously considered this connection between how a thing is done with the notion of ‘morality’ — e.g. how you cut a piece of wood, is it done with intentionality, mindfulness, proper mechanics, accuracy? etc. I suppose I hadn’t thought very much about what constitutes morality, where morality comes from, what is it’s purpose, what is the effect of individual action in the world… i thought about morality in other terms, implications and ramifications such as religious zealotry, bigotry, inculcated values, etc. I suppose I carried the sort of ‘standard-issue’ cultural implant in my conception of morality… it could be taken straight from the dictionary… ‘Morality… 1. The quality of being moral. 2. The evaluation of or means of evaluating human conduct, as a. A set of ideas of right and wrong; Christian morality. b. A set of customs of a given society, class, or social group which regulate relationships and prescribe modes of behavior to enhance the group’s survival; middle class morality 3. Virtuous conduct especially in compliance with approved codes for sexual behavior. 4. A rule or lesson in moral conduct; a moral. 5. A morality play.’

Both in the global and personal sense, the intimate connection of morality to the freewill of the individual is a concept that deserves some careful consideration and especially in the context of the prevailing and pervading tendencies of the society at large, that is, the larger cultural manifestation of the relationship of will, what a person does, with morality. Connection of will and morality might be viewed as a key to a therapeutic and the possibility of a ‘curative’ activity through the doing of craft work, specifically, through working with the hands.

‘A defect in thinking is not of such tremendous importance. Most defects are really defects in the will; for even when you find a defect in the thinking, you must look carefully to see to what extent this defect in thinking is really a defect in will.’ (steiner).

the traditional view of the sacred nature of craft as a symbol of the human potential for wholeness as well as the way toward that wholeness. Once there was no divorce between art and craft; in medieval society, painters and sculptors as well as potters and weavers were members of craft guilds. A man was a carpenter, a painter, or a stonemason, his work, his way of life, was central to his identity and recognized as his means of centering and discovering himself. It was holy; it was his ‘religion,’ his relinking with his divine source. j.m. dooling”

laura 7 “…One cult is enough for a lifetime.”
if there is a “silver lining” to the Fellowship of Friends experience, it is that we learned to recognize the kool-aide and how to avoid the kool-aide servers.

sheik, previous page 299 “Ton: No, I haven’t ever visited either a Reichian, or a Bionergetic therapist, although Bionergetics is a very attractive concept to me. I take it that your question was meant as a recommendation.”

i liked the metaphor of ‘bending over backwards’ and that’s the reason i asked the question… we have to do that in life sometimes (bending over backwards that is, and as well, it is an exercise in bioenergetics… no it wasn’t meant as a recommendation, although if you are drawn to it, as j.campbell would say, “follow your bliss.” as for a therapist, recommendations from trusted sources are good, but independent exploration is another way to proceed… in any case, if it doesn’t “taste” right, spit it out…

all the best to all

35. brucelevy - May 25, 2008

36. unoanimo - May 25, 2008

37. nigel harris price - May 25, 2008

Elena
Although I would defend my ‘little Sagittarian Arrows of Desire’, I will take your advice and allow you to filter what I have, intimately to say, through your email. ton, it is 4.30am our time – will look up some quotes on craft and get back to you. Bruce – the Bible, although the most ‘bastardized’, being the most widespread book in the world, IS NOT WEIRD! Can you contribute, rather than agitate. Love to all…….
Nigel.

38. nigel harris price - May 25, 2008

Dear ton
I am connected to the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths in London, by way of having my hallmark registered there, and receiving the Goldsmiths Review, notice of wonderful exhibitions and competitions regularly. My quotes on craft are spread around and those will follow this week, but I thought I would offer this one specifically:-

CYRIL STANLEY SMITH (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

….the role of technology in altering human affairs has been consistently neglected….The record of man’s technological achievements is written not in words but hidden in objects, and because the record is hard to identify, it has not always been preserved.

A purposeful, utilitarian mind is indispensable in developing an abstract idea to the point of social importance, but the discovery of something new requires the sensibility and curiosity of the artist.

The history of metals in the hands of man encompasses fire and pain, frustration and triumph. It is the history of curious, creative man sweating and struggling through thousands of years over materials so mysterious that their craft was held in superstitious awe.

Thus, Biringuccio continued: “He who wishes to practice this art must not be of a weak nature, either from age or constitution, but must be strong, young and vigorous….nor do I doubt that whoever considers this art well will fail to recognize a certain brutishness in it, for the founder is always like a chimney sweep, covered with charcoal and distasteful sooty smoke….to this is added the fact that for this work a violent and continuous straining of all a man’s strength is required which brings great harm to his body and holds many definite dangers to his life. In addition, this art holds the mind of the artificer in suspense and fear regarding its outcome and keeps his spirit distorted and almost continuously anxious….But, with all this, it is a profitable and skillful art and in large part beautiful”.

(Thanks for the invite to share…..Nigel)

39. nigel harris price - May 25, 2008

33 Arthur
As to ‘teacher’ – some people don’t like the term – bad taste in the mouth due to the authoritative ‘feel’ to the word. Can we use ‘peer tutoring’? We all share the knowledge around, to become more ourselves, be we simple or complex by nature. Love, angel thee……
Nigel.

(33 – number Symbolizing Awakening)

40. unoanimo - May 25, 2008

Hello Nigel ~

I may be wrong, though I believe ‘ton’ was looking for a quote from you yourself: as a fellow ‘smithy’ myself, I know you have some…

:.)

41. nigel harris price - May 25, 2008

Man Ray
“The world is full of craftsmen; but there are few practical dreamers”. I did what ton asked, and I have nothing to say for myself, other than paste my biography/CV/resume below:-

NIGEL HARRIS PRICE – CURRICULUM VITAE – 2008
___________________________________________________________________

Address: 16B Thornberry Avenue, Exeter, Devon, EX1 3HR, UK.

Landline: 01392 462103

Mobile: 07973 222346

Email: aprhys@nigelprice.net

Website: http://www.apma-uk.co.uk

NINO: WE 90 80 86 B
___________________________________________________________________

Education:

1968-1973 Peter Symond’s School, Winchester. 10 ‘O’levels including English and Maths.

1973-1975 Farnham VI Form College, Surrey. ‘A’ level Pure Mathematics.

1975-1976 West Surrey College of Art and Design, Farnham, Surrey. ‘A’ level Art.

1976-1979 Brighton Polytechnic of Art and Design, Sussex. BA Hons in Craft Design.

1991-1992 St Luke’s College of Education, Exeter, Devon. PGCE in Design and Technology
(course unfinished due to illness). ‘A’ in teaching practice.

2003-2004 East Devon College, Tiverton, Devon. City and Guilds 7407 in 16+ education.

2004-2006 East Devon College, Tiverton, Devon. Certificate of Education in 16+ education.
___________________________________________________________________

Awards:

1976 Johnson-Matthey Silver Design Award (first prize).

1978 Johnson-Matthey Silver Design Award (third prize).

1979 Distinction Licentiateship of the Society of Designer-Craftsmen.
___________________________________________________________________

Courses:

2001 Business Information Technology Course, Exeter College, Devon.

2006-present Ongoing Staff Development Days, Exeter College, Devon.

NIGEL HARRIS PRICE – CURRICULUM VITAE 2008 (CONTINUED)
___________________________________________________________________

Employment:

2008-present Self-employed teacher of precious metals, Bickleigh, Devon

2006-present PCDL Lecturer in Silversmithing, Exeter College, Devon.

2003-present ACL Lecturer in Silver and Jewellery, East Devon College, Tiverton, Devon.

1997-present Self employed designer-craftsman in precious metals, Exeter, Devon.

1997 Silversmith in residence, Bishopsland Workshops, Dunsden, S. Oxfordshire.

1993-1996 Part-time self employed designer-craftsman in precious metals,
Budleigh Salterton, Devon.

1990-1991 Senior Jewellery Technician, Sheffield Polytechnic, Yorkshire.

1987-1989 Self employed designer-craftsman in precious metals, Sausalito, California.
Official Silversmith for visit of Pope John Paul II to San Francisco, 1987.

1986-1987 Gallery Manager, Aurum Fine Crafts Gallery, San Francisco, California.

1984-1986 Workshop Manager, Harrison’s Silversmiths, Palo Alto, California.

1982-1984 Silversmith, Porter Blanchard Silversmiths, Calabasas, California.

1979-1981 Part-time self employed craftsman in precious metals, North London.
___________________________________________________________________

I have always enjoyed the creative arts and was encouraged by my mother to go to art college. I have developed a somewhat ‘universal’ approach to my craft, enjoying the process of commissioned work from a variety of cultures. I visit galleries and museums to provide myself with ideas and encouragement in my craft-form.

I have folios of both photographs of exemplary past work and also of designs.

Dear Unoanimo – Maybe this is my very own “Song of Myself”. If you have an email site that takes j.peg attachments, I can send you images…..Nigel.

42. elena - May 25, 2008

Arthur, when you say these things I always think you are making fun of me. Aren’t you? My sense of humor is so lost I never quite know. We are sharing here. If we learn a lot while we are at it, good for us, we all gain. If you can use it and help me practice it without having to pay you, then it might be worth looking at what it is like when put to practice! As they say, talk is cheap!

43. elena - May 25, 2008

Bruce, I lost my sense of humor but yours is perverse no matter how much I enjoy it!

Nigel, quiet down, don’t give us this curriculum thing love, if you’re going to write, write from your soul. Every time, all the time and hopefully not more than three times a day. Rest, pause, let yourself be and allow for rythm here without overwhelming us with your intensity. No, I’m not the teacher, but I beg you consider it. The behavior is invasive. Would you do me the favor and pace yourself? Please?

44. nigel harris price - May 25, 2008

Elena
I was going to keep this private, but you want it from The Soul, so here it is – as a Martial Fear Feature Transfomed, defending itself. Neither You, nor I own this blog but my comments are more neutral and less acerbic than yours. Can I ask you, in public My Dear, why you were attracted to marrying a Dominance Feature Systems Analyst and then now feel disgusted by the experience and the Cult Itself? I try to reply honestly and as happily as possible to All, not Just You on this site. I beg You Consider This and That. If I am intense, it is because it is the Very Nature of My Soul. Earnestly…..Nigel.

45. nigel harris price - May 25, 2008

Serendipity about where the last blog came from and this one – my number. You, too, can become Conscious in this Lifetime. Love…N.

46. lauralupa - May 25, 2008

Hi nigel, nice work you do!
One of my favorite arts and crafts quotes is the following, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow:

“In the elder days of Art, Builders wrought with greatest care Each minute and unseen part; For the gods see everywhere.”

(Unfortunately for us ex-fofers the term “the gods” carries a negative connotation, and I don’t need to explain why. Subsitute with whatever unspoiled sacred concept or personification you like)

One can appreciate that quality of care and attention to each detail in ancient sacred buildings, for example when visiting a Gothic Cathedral. Another more recent example that comes to my mind is the work of Antoni Gaudì in Barcelona. Coincidentally, he was the son of a metal worker and Gothic architecture was a strong influence on his art.

That sort of work morality that ton was referring to is something I also find very attractive, actually I think it’s a subject of vital importance.
BTW, just yesterday I was reading a post on Reality Sandwich (in case you wonder, I chose it as startup page on my browser, and that’s how I keep picking up stuff there), saying they are currently looking for crafts products for their newly created marketplace.
Any of you talented people want to offer your goods?

http://www.realitysandwich.com/why_evolver_exchange

47. brucelevy - May 25, 2008

37. nigel harris price

The Bible had nothing to do with what I said.

48. brucelevy - May 25, 2008

I was referring to the nigel harris price stream of consciousness and pharmacology show.

49. elena - May 25, 2008

Thanks Nigel, you do speak from the soul when you are under pressure as I think I’ve managed sometimes and I wonder if we both have a similar feature in our intensity. Thank you again for the photograph. “Acerbic” …so true. May I still express what is bothering me? It is not your responses to people, which are as you say, beautifully elegant and un-confrontational as mine tend to be. What I think is doing neither you nor the blog a favour is the intensity with which you post one thing after another. Others and you could say, “how about the frequency and amount you write? That bothers me too.” And yes, it might take the foam out of my imaginary picture out but if it is said with caring it’ll be a lot easier to understand and deal with than if it is said with blunt personal rejection without even addressing what the subject is. I think reasons do matter and so does the tone. I got a private e-mail last night in a very loving tone from someone that does not usually have that tone on the blog and gets an acerbic tone back from me. If you wrote on the blog with that same tone you wrote in private, you would get as sweet a response. With you Nigel, you’ve been very loving but there is something out of proportion that doesn’t help me, you or others here, IMO and it is clear that the loving is an artefact that can turn around in the opposite direction very quickly. That is O.K. too, and worth observing.

The value of this community or community itself for me is that each other’s excesses show up and if the community can still embrace the individual and channel the excesses rather than throw the individual out by decree or by mutual agreement of those in power, insulting, ignoring, making fun of or the many other ways that things like this tend to happen, then the individual in question, you or me, can see where we need trimming. I am all for trimming! Perhaps too much? I do think we would greatly benefit from simply saying this bothers me and still embracing each other.

The form matters tremendously. With you for example, more than what you say which has in fact seemed overly positive towards me, it is the amount of it what shows an imbalance and makes me uncomfortable. That doesn’t mean that I want you out of the blog or that what you say is not valuable, it simply means that I would tend to be a lot more open and sympathetic towards you and your participation if it weren’t imposed on me as often as you are doing so. I think Sharon was right when she pointed it out not long ago and I didn’t support her then because the tone was difficult for me, but her tone immediately changed positively and we moved on. Bruce seems to detect things and not spend three pages like me to explain them, but it would be wonderful if we can reach that level of honesty in which we do say what is bothering us about each other without it meaning that we assume this group behaviour in which the person has to be thrown out. That to me is second line. I doubt it is easy, blogging has not been easy, but I do believe we’ve come far ahead.

While I much appreciate Veronicapoe’s last defence of the situation in regards to Dream Catcher, the option of not reading you is not the one I would like to take. Not reading you for me is ignoring you and I don’t want to do that. I want to acknowledge each one of your words and say, dam Nigel, shut up, when I think you are talking too much and still know that you know that you are important to me.

As for your question: “why you were attracted to marrying a Dominance Feature Systems Analyst and then now feel disgusted by the experience and the Cult Itself?”
If you are asking me why Girard turned me on, I must admit, I much enjoyed and admired how his mind functioned. The fact that he was going to become a conscious being was also very attractive and since I believed in Robert blindly I thought that if that was really going to happen he needed a great deal of help: LOVE. Overtime I realized that the fact that he can be so beautifully talented with his mind, does not mean that he is not twisting the truth, brainwashing people the world over and fitting his imaginary picture of Robert into an imaginary picture of the world so that he can play the Girard Haven role as expansively as it is played. It is a fact that I sincerely despise what he is doing to both himself and others including the absurdity of life while we were married and it is also a fact that I love him still with no less strength than when I married him. Probably more. We’ve lived a life together in a very short period of time.What I’ve come to realize as time passes is that people are not just white or black but white and black, that we can be expansively talented in one area and “woundedly” limited in another. I have no doubt that I myself carry these features and because it is quite appalling to me that people I love like Girard are not far from finishing their role on this plane, as I also think I am, and are still far from reaching even a minimum degree of simple well being, I am quite desperate to know for myself, where do my own impediments lie?

As I’ve come to understand cult behaviour, dog training or dog-ma, it is not just what we lived in the Fellowship but each of our “programming” when it crystallizes: a crust of personality that becomes fixed to a form. What disgusts me about the Cult is that it manages to implant it in very short periods of time on very vulnerable people. Not vulnerable in that they may look or act weakly, no, they can act with great confidence and power as sociopaths tend to do. A mature false personality looks and behaves with great power and confidence especially in public but breaks down in private. This lack of coherence in our lives, this tremendous imbalance in our different arenas, private, public, work, sociability etc, is what I am convinced can give us a very efficient look at what needs tuning and we can do that for each other by “balancing” each other out within the frames of tolerance and intolerance of communal life without each needing to pay a shrink. Shrinks after all, are the replacement of the old Shaman but having clarity about the importance of the outer circle of one’s life and daring to put one’s self out for trimming can itself become a very healing environment. And Shrinks in regular society, like Girard and Elizabeth in the Fellowship, are also meant to make one adapt to a status quo in which people can abuse other people economically, emotionally and intellectually and still continue to hold power. No, going madly against that is no more mad than the madness it is attacking.

So Nigel, if I tell you that you are showing a great deal of imbalance, it is not because I think I am more balanced than you are but because the area in which I am unbalanced is different to yours and in sharing our prognosis of each other’s imbalances we might be able to help each other. I know for a fact that no matter how crudely I’ve been questioned here, participating has been in itself healing. Some hate me, some respect me and some like you, say they love me. That is a great deal more than I had in the Fellowship of Friends where I was the latin opportunist that married Girard Haven, or the lunatic that gives those angles, or the king of club’s intense one, or it doesn’t matter who but stay away. That too might give you and inkling into why I hate it so badly. The Fellowship hurts people one way or another, blatantly or quietly and that is not what I was paying for. I was deceived, “set up.” It hurst people “quietly” if people assume the posture of acceptance of the status quo and blatantly if they blatantly oppose it as I did and will continue to do. It is wonderful to reach a point in one’s life in which one knows what the enemy is and it is not people no matter how much people like to incarnate everything that is evil. Incarnating something else takes work.
This was written after reading up to post 46.

50. elena - May 25, 2008

Sheik, Are you able to pinpoint whether the blog is being opened five hundred times by mostly different people or many times by a few individuals? It seems out of patterns that it would raise the numbers so quickly.

Hi Ton,

“I hadn’t previously considered this connection between how a thing is done with the notion of ‘morality’ — e.g. how you cut a piece of wood, is it done with intentionality, mindfulness, proper mechanics, accuracy? etc.
Much enjoyed your post, thanks. It certainly applies to what I think can be superimposed to what we are doing on the blog. If we consider the craft of writing and sharing as a “craft” with all the complexities that come with this particular form, the analogy would certainly fit and the clay would still be filled with bubbles but the sculpture does not look bad at all!

My vision of “sad” in Anthroposophy was related to the inconceivable fact that there would even be forms of racism in its heart! I guess knowing where the goal is doesn’t mean the ball is in it. I do think that in terms of therapy Steiner got a great deal more vision into practical work than the System ever did especially in our thwarted Fellowship practices. Your presentation of crafts as a therapy to work on the will more than the thinking is already an aspect of its potential and transposing it to our system it is for me what “balancing the centres” would mean and understanding that everything we do in life has a particular effect on our being. The way we do it or the “morality” with which we do it is what changes the odds to a certain extent but understanding the objective effect of the activity itself, granting it its own value, is equally meaningful. If we look at the Fellowship, we can see that no matter how carefully and intentionally things are done, the place is no less corrupt. While people may have profited individually from making an effort of intentionality for some time, in the long run, the thought that those efforts help us lead to becoming more and more dependent of the Cult and lose connection with both our personal and social well being. The lack of harmony between the social and the individual aim, resulted in a Cult depleting people’s soul and practical life, instead of a School replenishing both the individual and the community with culture. It is of immense value to understand how the social aspect conditions our inner life and vice-versa.

As you well know, Reich explained all these things through the sexual “healthiness” of individuals. One of the things that the experience of the Fellowship showed me was that if a community can destroy so much of people’s personal integrity through brainwashing, then by law, it must also have the ability to heal people’s integrity if it returns to the individual the power that was granted to the Teacher, guru, dictator or whatever the figure may be. In a healthy community in which respect for participation not necessarily without boundaries but without dog-ma prevails, the individual is empowered by his participation. In the Fellowship, everyone is disempowered which allows Robert to rape people’s pockets as much as their underwear. No wonder clothing is the only thing that really matters there, he loves getting underneath it and people are so sexually unhealthy they actually enjoy the rape, it makes them feel more alive in the frigidity of their insignificant background. Since they do not value themselves, were never valued by anyone or if someone ever did they discarded them as the six billion dead people on the planet, they feel valuable because someone at least cares for their pocket and their underwear. Do you still wonder Nigel why I despise it so viscerally? Hierarchy in most regular institutions does not allow for people’s moral and spontaneous empowerment. Almost everywhere people adapt to the status quo and quietly accept their subordinate position or position of power without it relating consciously to a direct contact between human beings. That is, without the morality or inner integrity from being to being. With that inner integrity, our relationship to how the cake is cut would change completely because human beings would matter more than how much they can rip off from each other. We do not live in a sweet world even though that does not make it any less beautiful for one to attempt to carry out one of the struggles of the time as one comes of age.

51. nigel harris price - May 25, 2008

I’ve read blogs since 45 and can only say that I am going to remain silent to features hopefully petering out. Lauralupa in 46 is all I will reply to and will perhaps be the most true reply to ‘ton’ about an actual quote from me. “I am present to my hands crafting with love and exactness. I love my students enough to let them develop that same ‘feel’ for creativity, in which we both honour and imitate creation”. To all, unpolitically…..Nigel.

52. paulshabram - May 25, 2008

I have tried several times to post here. Maybe this will time will be successful!?

I am a latecomer to this discussion and after reading the first thousand and last thousand posts it shows a distinct degradation that is disappointing. In the last 29 years since I quietly slipped out of the FOF I have checked in on the “school”. It now seems like it has reached it’s inevitable fatal crisis. Much of the focus of this blog has been focussed on RB, but he is merely the necrotic center of the canker. The real damage is being done on the margins, and it’s being done by the rank and file membership. This blog seemed to be a possible immunization for current members that are still seeking to “verify” and prospective members that are about to be sucked in.
Elena and Nigel in particular, this blog for you has become about you. As interesting and relevant as some of you posts are, the gems are much diluted by a great deal of drivel.

53. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - May 25, 2008

Elena: I can’t point it out but I am certain that there are far fewer people viewing it than before. When the thing started, the discussion used to have about 1,000 hits a day, then for a long while about 2,000. Now 500 is the most it ever gets to, usually a bit less.

The counter won’t recognize whether the hits are unique or not – ie. viewing the blog more times during the day will count as more than one hit.

54. elena - May 25, 2008

Thanks Sheik.

What surprised me was that there were no more than two hundred hits a few weeks ago when I looked for the first time in months and if they’ve gone up to even five hundred, why do people stay as passive observers? That is amazing to me. Thank you any way for even making the effort to read. This will not go on for ever!

Thanks Paul for your opinion. Will keep it in mind.

55. nigel harris price - May 26, 2008

Dear Lauralupa
Thanks for the Reality Sandwich site connection. I hope to use it wisely…..Nigel.

56. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 26, 2008

54 Elena

“Why do people stay as passive observers?”

52 paulshabram

“Elena and Nigel in particular, this blog for you has become about you. As interesting and relevant as some of your posts are, the gems are much diluted by a great deal of drivel.”

57. nigel harris price - May 26, 2008

“…..and, because I cannot close the eye of the mind (pineal gland), nor keep my mouth from speech”. W B Yeats (The People)…..

Lauralupa
I always found the idea that ‘man cannot do’ defeative and belittleing. There are beautiful things being done by local craftspeople in Devon, a reaction, I believe, against the drab, intentionally ugly-made work of previous decades…..”A thing of beauty (the human soul, cradle of the spirit) is a joy forever”…..

Hope Paul (52) this is a gem for you, with the ‘sullen ground’ washed away….Nigel.

58. paulshabram - May 26, 2008

No, Nigel (57) it’s not.

59. nigel harris price - May 26, 2008

Elena
I have managed to go through your two last lengthy blogs and, hopefully, to have digested what you, sincerely, have written. I wish to apologize for my ‘punchiness’ – “brevity is the soul of wit”, as Shakespeare penned, and I failed miserably at that exercise in the FOF, partly because I am a Jack of the King of Hearts. So I wish to dedicate the song that is now playing on my sound-system, to you, dearest one:-

‘When I am down, and – oh – my soul so weary,
When troubles come, and my heart burdened be;
Then I am still and wait there in the silence,
Until you come, and sit a while with me…..

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on troubled seas.
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up, to all that I can be. (Westlife)

“Men stand, when women hold”…..n h price (2007).

60. elena - May 26, 2008

We’ve already been through this and it is all right. Life goes on.

61. nigel harris price - May 26, 2008

Thanks Elena
All accepted – as a friend of mine reminded me recently ‘To look back is to become a Piller of Salt’. In love…..Nigel.

62. ton - May 26, 2008

paul 52
glad that you have found a way to post successfully, good to hear another voice. i think i understand your point that the disease has spread to the surrounding tissues in the fellowship of friends, personally, i wouldn’t dismiss or diminish any degree of focus on RB as “merely the necrotic center of the canker.” treatment of the necrotic center may not cure the disease, but it does offer an approach to treating the illness. maybe you have ideas about ‘alternative treatments’? i agree with your assessment — “This blog seemed to be a possible immunization for current members that are still seeking to ‘verify’ and prospective members that are about to be sucked in” — it is the main reason i continue to ‘beat the drum’ here myself… (i wouldn’t use the past tense ‘seemed’). as for: “the gems are much diluted by a great deal of drivel” it seems that ‘driveling’ goes with the territory here which implies an active process on the part of the reader/poster to separate the ‘wheat from the chaff…’ thanks for pointing that out and i hope you’ll continue to stay involved and help in the process.

63. elena - May 26, 2008

Just another voice out here,

Taking the pebbles others throw to make stones of them is the karma of cowards and a sad place to keep one’s self in. You have beauty inside of you. Tell us about it. No one can stop you. Every stick makes good fire in the public square.

64. nigel harris price - May 26, 2008

I always knew when I awakened, as was my aim and purpose for joining the ‘School’, that folks would have a hard time believing me as an In Soul Solar (who is Apollo-gizing now, REB?). I never wanted to be a Center Director or anything of a role in the FOF, other than being the best precious metal crafter that I could be. And now the Angelic beings (‘The Patience of Angels’ is a beautiful modern ballad) have gifted me with that Blessing of Enlightenment (Come join me on the Beach, with all the Riches I can Hold – mike and the mechanics ‘Beach of Gold’) I declare that Elena is the first of, as I said before, the 7 female conscious beings in this Handover Time to the Age of Aquarius. How does this process work? If you have been watching the blog carefully, it goes ‘Approach’, Confront’, ‘Surrender your self’, ‘Accept and Love’. Watch, as she unfolds her magic!…..
(“My own feet have tried it well” – Walt Whitman). When you are ready, I will offer New Things (for you all) to play with. The former things – father-figures (although my natural father is mastering his role well as my official ‘mental-health’ carer, and has given me some beautiful things for me to improve my ‘warrior-den’ apartment, today), misogynists and petty antagonists, cult-leaders and politicians, religious dogmatists etc. etc. (I am sure you all can add to the list), have Passed Away (or very nearly – shall we tip them ‘over the brink’ to be ahead of time?) And please, anyone who is approaching this blog with an emotionally destructive attitude – just remember that Elena is teaching you that False Personality shows the Fear of exposing a Weak Essence that itself has not been nurtured by a strong Work (True) Personality. The 64 (this blog number) dollar question is – will you try? “The student must work, and the teacher must know” – Rodney Collin ‘Theory of conscious Harmony’ (Elena’s speciality).

65. brucelevy - May 26, 2008

This is getting more and more bizarre. I can’t help but think that the FOF hierarchy is thrilled with what is essentially the complete neutering of the blog from it’s purpose of bringing additional truth to members and potential members alike. It’s like a fever dream. I sincerely hope it can recover.

66. lauralupa - May 26, 2008

My one question to all is:
if you truly care for the preservation of this feeding ground,
will you still be willing to bring food to the table?

Have really we exhausted all topics, all memories, all gripes and revelations? Do you feel that every relevant facet our common profound and traumatic experience has been exposed to light, processed and clearly interpreted?
If so, it’s time to move on…

But if you return here, even once a week, then the ties that bind are still there, then…
I ask you please, instead of limiting yourselves to passive-aggressive complaining about the daily menu,
add some new spice to the soup, be brave, let us taste your special flavour!
Try to consider this is an aspect of deprogramming, since weren’t we all constantly instructed to live in secrecy and blandness?

67. lauralupa - May 26, 2008

Dear Bruce,
if you can accept what is happening, I hope you will see that this drama in action has the potential to enlighten us all in more than one way about our deepest core beliefs, assumptions and tolerance levels. These levels of disclosure were unheard of inside the Fellowship. Not just the disclosure of awful truths and despicable fatcs, but the laying bare of souls and exposure of their bleeding wounds. Disclosure, also, of the powerful and unusual currents that flow through our minds. I personally think it’s a great opportunity to see if we are yet willing and able to help each other grow and become free(r), or not.
Remember Ginsberg:
“don’t hide the madness”

68. Vena - May 26, 2008

I agree with Bruce. Things have gotten too bizarre. The blog has morphed into some strange kind of attempt at self therapy, not to mention delusion, for a few individuals. Maybe it’s original purpose is exhausted.

69. ton - May 26, 2008

ya i agree with both bruce and laura…
nigel the obsession with numbers, the obsession with and hero-worship of elena and other declarative statements related to your personal and unfolding epiphanies/revelations are sounding bizarre… personally, i have a high tolerance-threshold for these things, maybe because i went to art school… maybe because i work at ‘an institution’ where bizarre ideation is not uncommon, maybe because i’m a bit crazy myself… whatever the case i hope it can be accepted on some level and worked with… i would not discourage nigel from revealing the ‘unusual currents that flow through his mind,’ but he should also expect a certain type and level of scrutiny and criticism when he veers into the ‘deep end.’ earlier i attempted to get him to ‘talk’ constructively about the ‘healing’ aspects of his craft, hoping that it might serve as ‘grounding…’ i agree with laura and couldn’t say it better so i’ll quote: “…this drama in action has the potential to enlighten us all in more than one way about our deepest core beliefs, assumptions and tolerance levels… Not just the disclosure of awful truths and despicable fatcs, but the laying bare of souls and exposure of their bleeding wounds. Disclosure, also, of the powerful and unusual currents that flow through our minds. I personally think it’s a great opportunity to see if we are yet willing and able to help each other grow and become free…”

70. arthur - May 26, 2008

Girard Haven said to me about the door ajar and the required entrance fine of $2,500, “don’t steal it or borrow it”.

Oh, Girard that gold alchemy sweater I was wearing which stimulated you to say, “you must have had money before”.

No Girard, that was a hand me down. It was maroon in color do you remember?

Good God Almighty that was a 28 year old memory. I guess shocks do create memory.

71. arthur - May 26, 2008

Oops, my apology to Girard. When he said $2,500 I said, “I’ve never had $2,500 in my life, that’s when made the comment about the sweater.

I have to try to be honest once in a while. And, besides all this I use to pray about winning the lottery and giving almost all to the Fellowship of Friends.

What a fool, what a foolish thing that would have been. From now on it’s kids, dogs and plants.

72. Vinnie the Fish - May 26, 2008

Hello Anna, what was that about 60 men for Robert’s birthday?
Curious.

73. Vena - May 26, 2008

I want to apologize if my post #68 offended anyone. That was not my intent. I was interested in the blog’s ability to reveal the dark side of the Fellowship and to help current members open their eyes and find the courage to leave.

The blog seems to have become something different now and that is all right too. The disolution of the Fellowship has begun and the blog played an important part in that process.

74. veramente - May 26, 2008

67 Lauralupa

Thank you for the beautiful message.

I used to collect daily cards until I had a pretty good size stack tied together with an elastic band. They became part of mixed clutter like old photos, stuff etc.,.sort of out of sight.
One day I finally put them in the garbage without wanting to even read some of them. I thought I was finally cured!
But those slim messages can get into books easily and found this one recently:
“The oldest test for man is woman, and the oldest test for woman is man. One must value one’s self above anything outside oneself, although awakening and relationships do not preclude one another. . Love, Robert

He (RB) started the sentence proclaiming some kind of objective truth, then he pounds it with one of his favorite indirect orders: one must, which made us intellectually obey without questioning.
If you did not like it you were in your false personality of course.

“One must value one’s self above anything outside oneself”, here truly he speaks for himself, does he really care about anyone? …and what “self” was he talking about, for us a mirage: the higher centers?
for him his insatiable greed.

He (RB) forgot to mention the maybe the oldest test for himself are men in great numbers, “male students”, but of course he does not engage in equal and fair relationships with these people, he eats them.
Love, Cruel Influence

75. Joe Average - May 26, 2008

Just about any creative process I can think of, most clearly the creative processes in the life of a single person, usually murmur quietly for a short time, explode in a dramatic, form-defining flowering of innovation and then either die or pass into periods of slow growth punctuated occasionally with new bursts of brilliance.
The general acceleration of life in cultures rooted in the information revolution has brought much of the world into our laptops. Near instant gratification of many wishes is becoming reality. Part of what this has led to is a kind of immaturity and impatience, a demand for eternal novelty and excitement. “That’s so five minutes ago” is already 10 minutes ago, now it is more like 20 seconds.

The delirium of the blog’s birth is over. For the thousands of those left gagged and childless by the FOF’s excommunication and banishment policies and feverish spin doctor damage control, the birth experience was extraordinary and inspired many to creative explorations of their experiences.

Now that “first flowering” experience is over. The baby is still there, but now it keeps pissing in your face when you change it’s diapers and some days it just can’t seem to stop shitting. Fewer people find that as gratifying as its birth and mouse away in search of new pages to passively energize them. That’s fine. No paternity suits here. Participation in the ongoing process is entirely voluntary. But when someone just glances over the lifespan so far, wags their finger and says, “dude, when the head first appeared, that was awesome, but now there’s diapers everywhere and the room stinks” without even bothering to try to open a window, I have to wonder whether we need some “Depends” in addition to the diapers.

76. brucelevy - May 26, 2008

There are a few who have tried to open the window.

77. Joe Average - May 26, 2008

It was not directed at anyone who has constructively contributed here, just at drive-by shooters.

78. Joe Average - May 26, 2008

It was not directed at anyone who has constructively contributed here, just at drive-by shooters.

79. elena - May 26, 2008

Dear Nigel, you make me laugh but not at you. Thank you for even considering such a wild thought but I agree with Bruce, it is seriously disruptive of the intent of the blog. Give me twenty years and I’ll tell you if I even managed to get a third of the way where you’d like to see me. I have no pretension of being either conscious or a teacher. Please allow me to share here with others who I need and would love to listen to without this crazy idea of yours conditioning us in any way.

If you are even close to that much respect for me, please make it a point to yourself to write no more than three post and include the many you think of in the morning in the one at noon and so on. Please, for the sake of a viable rhythm here in which we don’t obstruct other’s participation. I would also ask you to refrain from defending me in any way or promoting this feeling of yours. Flow from your own inspiration, you don’t need mine. You are your own teacher and need yourself much more than anyone else to take that place for you. We are all mature enough to not need teacher’s replacing our selves.

Should you find it impossible to follow this limitations, I would suggest you are given the option to post once a day or a week or a month or a year. My love to you Nigel, we are not building any more cults here.

80. Joe Average - May 26, 2008

Damn, that stutter always comes back when I get nervous…..

81. Joe Average - May 26, 2008

Damn, that stutter always comes back when I get nervous…..

82. brucelevy - May 26, 2008

72. Joe Average

I understand and agree with the main thrust of what you’re saying. At the same time I also agree with Paul. I knew him pretty well in the FOF. He, like I, tend (for better or worse) to try to be straight shooters and get to the salient points and purposes.
If I appear impatient, well, theres no dearth of other people to act as healers for those who require it. And that’s good. It’s also good to recognize diversions that lessen credibility and focus.

Of course, at the same time, it’s going to go where it goes, as are the people who come here. If one hopes to share things that can’t be shared in the FOF, about the FOF, the audience is easily lost for those people who are currently weighing their lives in this cult. It would seem to me that certain areas are much more readily dealt with in a person-to-person manner, as Elena has suggested a few times. I’m not trying to keep people from turning this into a psychoanalysis or pharmacology forum, but when it approaches that, the blog not only loses people like me, but much more important, they lose the people we have primarily been talking to and for.

83. nigel harris price - May 26, 2008

65 onwards
“Love hid [and still hides – ‘my addition’] his head among the stars”. (W B Yeats). Thank you all, my awakened ones, for your kind, and stimulating words of wonderousness. And Elena, yes, of course, as you request, in your accommodating-type-and-now-taking-command-of blogging (without feature, but love) – 3 blogs a day. It’s alright to follow the leader – “it’s why they sent me – do you know what it means?” (‘Field of Dreams’ – Kevin Costner, 1988). “Never assume to command Her” (‘Walt Whitman – Director’s Cut’). I never knew I could contain such happiness – the only control worth anything is self-control. (n). Stay quiet, small and ductile/versatile (Warrior Tactics)……………………………………………………………

84. nigel harris price - May 26, 2008

Shocking, but true – (8)-Avatar in the Universe (0) n……………………..

85. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 26, 2008

63 Elena

“Taking the pebbles others throw to make stones of them is the karma of cowards and a sad place to keep one’s self in.”

Poetic, but meaningless. And typically defensive. I’ve made the same point Paul did, and not very long ago. Here, I simply pointed out that he had just posted an answer to your question. Which you then “buffered.” I’ve contributed many posts to this blog, under a variety of names, including self-disclosure, accounts of the FOF, material on cults, and other materials. Personally, I’m not that interested in discussing with you my relationship with my mean step-sister or whatever–nothing wrong with that, but I have friends for that sort of thing and, if I want one, can find a therapist. I come hear to read, write, and think about the Fellowship and related issues (and they don’t have to be that closely related). I don’t come here to read people’s in-jokes or watch them have on-screen nervous breakdowns.

The problem is not that I’m too “cowardly” to contribute more, but that certain individuals tend to view the blog as their personal journal, to which they post literally anything that pops into their head, without regard for whether it may be of value, or even interest, to others. At one time, one contributor filled page after page with lengthy, self-indulgent, convoluted material designed primarily to display his literary skills and self-image as blog guru. I guess his divorce knocked some of that out of him. Anotherg, until he was banned, would use the blog to slice and dice his imaginary “opponents.” You have written many posts that I consider beautifully written and insightful–and also tend to barf onto the page quite a bit about how you’re going to scream until you’re hoarse because you feel like it. Now we have Nigel. Because he has a biochemical imbalance, we should certainly feel compassion for him, but that doesn’t change the fact that gibberish disrupts the flow of any attempt at communication.

So if you want more people to contribute, help to create and maintain some framework on which people can easily hang their own contributions, rather than a jungle of weeds that people have to decode before they can even figure out what might be an appropriate contribution.

86. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - May 26, 2008

68, 72 and 73 are newly moderated.

Vena: Your post appeared late, it wasn’t deleted. Offensive material (and I do not claim that your post was offensive, it wasn’t to me) is not deleted, I have censored people’s names in the past (that’s rule number one) and banned Greg but that’s as far as any of my serious and brutal attempts at a dictatorship went.

I keep posts in the moderation queue for a longer time because of Greg, as he is still trying to creep back and it’s hard detective work to keep him out. So I am sorry for posts appearing late or not at all, send me an e-mail if you are having trouble and we can sort something out.

87. arthur - May 26, 2008

I’ll be the first to publically say good-by. This Blog, the Shiek and all the people have helped me in ways that I could never properly explain.

I won’t miss U-tube, but I’ll miss all the wonderful links.

Good-by!!

88. Bares Reposting - May 26, 2008

veramente – May 26, 2008 – 36/#74:

I thought this post from Associated Press – 28/#170 – is worth repeating:

“Nuthead, you hit the nut right on the head. (Or, is that: you hit the head right on the nut as in: The leader is found out and is caught by the. . .; you get the picture, I trust. Or, maybe: the head that the Head gets is only for nuts.) One of the illustrious conscious beings of the Fourth Way tradition said, and I am paraphrasing here, that nothing negative should enter into sex. Yes, sex, by itself, is a beautiful and a neutral or a positive thing. Usually it is a consequence of love. However, in the Fellowship of Friends, it is full of negativity, which I will enumerate upon more later. And, that is why, on this most basic level, or heightened level, or both at the same time, the Fellowship of Friends is most decidedly not a Fourth Way school and never was, for the most part. It fails this premise. It is a sex cult developed by a sexually deviant narcissistic personality disordered megalomaniac for his own avaricious purposes. The Teacher also fails the penultimate test of almost any and all spiritual traditions and aspirants: the sex test – the most enticing and most difficult allurements of the body that must be governed in order to attain the realms that higher hydrogens connote – spiritual awakening.

The whole idea behind getting people (heterosexual men) to have sex with the Teacher, who are disinclined to have such relations, is a negatively motivated event. It is about the perpetrator proving their potent virility (read: omniscience), sexual prowess, power, dominance, and physical plus emotional manipulation, over the maximum number of persons who do not wish to do it – exercising the Work idea of: doing-what-the-machine-does-not-wish-to-do – to one of its most extreme and ultimate applications, for very wrong reasons – satisfying some sicko’s pleasure. The other aspects of, say, having an ‘endless fountain of immortal drink, pouring unto us from heaven’s brink’ (as the Mount Carmel Journals set into print) as an euphemism for drinking the sperm of a never ending source of male sexual partners to perform fellatio upon – is just another negatively motivated event of imagining that this substance, when acquired in this manner, will produce immortality for one; specifically the Teacher. (Kind of like worker bees feeding royal jelly to the queen bee.) But there is another negatively motivated aspect to this Fellowship of Friends (via Robert Earl Burton) established ‘religious practice.’

Normal human sexual behaviour, as mentioned above, is usually a consequence of love. The more rarefied substances, read: hydrogens, that circulate in those conditions, establish a certain positive emotional state in the participants. There are very specific hormones, read: hydrogens, that develop. These substances create a bonding for those willing parties. Can you, the ones persuaded to have sex with Robert against your will, honestly say that it was pleasurable, a positive experience and led to the type of positive emotional bonding that such acts are intended to have? Was there love present in a mutually reciprocal fashion where the synergy of the situation was additive or multiplicative (arithmetically or geometrically) rather than subtractive or divisive? Or, in simple terms, were all involved developing more conscious love possibilities, individually and as a group, from the experience? Was spiritual progress being made for people? Speak honestly, please, and post it here on the blog. [BTW, since page 28 in January 2008, no one has really spoken up in response to this invitation.]

You see, once you can establish a negative responsive mechanism to the production of these bonding hydrogens, rather than a positive one, you open the door to psychoses, criminality, dysfunctional relationships and a loss of access to conscience. This is not evolution; it is de-evolution. The exact opposite aim of the Psychology of Man’s Possible Evolution!

I could tell you how there once was a ‘sex exercise,’ where sex before marriage was forbidden for fellowship members, all the while, the Teacher was having his sexual appetites satisfied at a time he was claiming to be celibate. I could tell you about many specific instances of how people were seduced into the above scenarios (doing what you do not wish to do – sexually) by cunning, deception, and not-so-innocent playfulnesses. I could tell you about the occasion(s) of how the feudal king demanded his ‘privilege’ of requiring a bridegroom to have sex with him after the wedding but prior to the bridegroom consummating his marriage with his wife – done just for the ‘satisfying some sicko’s pleasure.’ I could tell you about how: sleeping in their innocence many an unsuspecting heterosexual male fellowship member was raped by that same feudal king. I could tell you about the many women adversely treated in their fellowship membership because they got into the all male harem and had sex with the boy toys.

And, thus that serpent stung them, rankly abused them, with witchcraft of his wit, and poured ‘juice of cursed hebenon. . . the leperous distilment; whose effect holds such an enmity with blood of man that swift as quicksilver it courses through the natural gates and alleys of the body, and with a sudden vigour doth posset and curd, like eager droppings into milk, the thin and wholesome blood. . . and a most instant tetter bark’d about, most lazar-like, with vile and loathsome crust, all [their] smooth bod[ies].’ This makes you wonder, then, why there is something rotten in Oregon House/Fellowship of Friends, does it not? Foul deeds will rise, though all the earth o’erwhelm them, to men’s eyes.

[Words of Shakespeare liberally used in last paragraph.]”

– – – – – – – – – –

72. Vinnie the Fish – May 26, 2008

‘Hello Anna, what was that about 60 men for Robert’s birthday?
Curious.’

Reportedly, fellatio was performed, by the illustrious leader, on 64 different participants on the 64th birthday celebration. Someone, please, say it is not true.

89. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

Just another neg-o (85)
If you don’t like -switch In There (you know – The Fellowship of Freuds i.e. non-mental-helthe-pokers!)

90. WhaleRider - May 27, 2008

Nigel:

“Just another neg-o”….? Whoa, there Nellie. Time for some reality testing.

Doesn’t that line of thinking seem familiar?…and the flurry of quotes, too? Remember it’s the FOF that doesn’t allow room for negative halves of centers and whose leader speaks through dead people. Out here in real life only your true friends (living, breathing) will let you know when you have food stuck in your teeth.

BTW, I personally don’t write off mental illness to just a biochemical imbalance, but more of a “psycho-spiritual-overwhelm” in the words of Dr. Peter Breggin, MD, author of “Toxic Psychiatry”. (A great book!)

Didn’t Mr G say something to the effect that you don’t really know a person’s level of being until you step on their corns? I take that to mean that it is your response to feedback that displays your emotional intelligence. Attacking the messenger, well, that just proves the point. In work language…defensiveness=identification or as you might like to quote in the words of your illustrious dead countryman Shakespeare, “Methinks the lady doth protest too much…”

Now we’ve lost Arthur? How sad.

I will miss you, Arthur. Do check in from time to time, will you?

91. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

Back down Nigel! Elena – do you think a few ‘folks’ are getting on this blog to ‘utter forth’ upon the void, without being “couteous and passionate” enough to thoroughly read and ‘inwardly digest’ (as my dear mum used to call it)- that’s my second day’s strike today oh! Mistress Fellow Commandress? (no numbers – long sword down – Miyamoto Musashi…..

92. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

Dawn Declaration…..

Isiah 40 (in part…..

“The Voice said Cry and he said What shall I cry? All flesh is as grass and the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field.
Behold the Lord will come with strong hand and his arm shall rule for Him. Behold his reward is with Him and His Work before him.
He shall feed his flock like a shepherd. he shall gather the lambs with his arm and shall carry them in his bosom and shall gently lead those that are with young.

Hast thou not heard, hast thou not known that the Everlasting Lord, the God, the Creator of the ends of the Earth, fainteth not, neither is weary, there is no searching of his understanding.
He giveth power to the faint and to them that hath no might he increaseth strength.
Even the youths shall faint and be weary and the young men shall utterly fail.
But THEY THAT WAIT UPON THE LORD shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint”.

(do what you say and say what you do and DO – conscienable Action)…..n…..

93. elena - May 27, 2008

This comedy is truly looking funny. Nigel I appoint you the Public Square’s buffon until the wolves get to you!

There is one lovely thing you said and that was that what you really wanted was to become the best goldsmith! Isn’t it true for so many of us that we just wanted to be the best in whatever it was we were? For the School? The Arc? Humanity? What I also wanted was to have friends so shut up Nigel or we’ll both get thrown out of here!

“Reportedly, fellatio was performed, by the illustrious leader, on 64 different participants on the 64th birthday celebration. Someone, please, say it is not true.”

Bares Reposting that is also very funny. If he can suck that many dicks during a day he must be conscious or something because there are only so many minutes in a day! Or at least the fastest dick sucker on the planet!. He’s got to at least get some credit for that one! So what do they do? Do they line up one after another and jump into bed as soon as the other one gets out?

Whalerider you’re hilarious!

And Another voice, Uno and Greg as much as Nigel and myself no matter what, belong here. Those of you who think someone is stopping you are much crazier than any one of us. You sit there with your little fingers up and say, I don’t like this and I don’t like that but what have you proposed with enough consistency to think you can just say, you are farting dear and I don’t like how it smells. You do not need excuses to give of yourself and if you are constipated what do you want us to do about itl You do not need carpets, or introductions or things to be easier. You need to trust yourselves and jump in, make the fools and be made fun of, insulted, questioned and loved too as the rest of us have been. It is like a ritual of initiation and there are no rules like the ones you are trying to impose to make yourself more comfortable. I have not dictated the rules here. This madness and this beauty is our story, this stupidity and this sincere desire to be together. I do not care frankly whether you participate or not enough to silence anyone else for you to do so, we talk things over and then we put boundaries but we don’t throw people out. And as long as he is not insulting who gives a dam if he wants to play the buffon. Hope this is not insulting to you Nigel; to come even close to being a good buffon is quite an Art. You do need to practice a little more though! Of course, it may be a contrast to your imaginary picture. If you can hold to your place for a while without becoming abusive when the wolves start biting you, you can be my teacher! I’ve shielded you all I am going to shield you. You are beautiful and dam crazy and give yourself a chance if you can.

Nigel, like Greg, cannot control his participation here, there is too much anxiety and whatever he is taking does not help in any positive way. Asking him to control it by himself is defeating his will and banning him totally is drastic, the repetition of the Fellowship play. Sheik, can you not put a limit to the amount of posts someone can make? Just that but not banning will help. It makes a world of difference whether you ban a person or impose limits to participation. Limits is the beginning of maturity as a community.

If those of you who have a little more control of your selves can carry the load that us lunatics have been carrying in excess for quite a while, you will help us: the Nigels and Elena’s, move on within your current. As Laura says, don’t just sit there and criticize, get a hold of your selves and be. And if that is too much for you and you’d rather leave, fare thee well.

What we play here, pharmacos, shrinks, or whatever else, is what we are supposed to be looking at to observe how we deal with it.
Deal with it like human beings, mature enough to understand no matter how ridiculous the difficulties look we don’t know how to solve them without banning people and that is no solution.

The idea that the blog is just to throw shit at the Fellowship is another absurdity. We’ve left the Fellowship, it is us who matter now. If we learn something beautiful, those inside will follow as they have been following because we have something they don’t:
freedom to be and develop organically as human beings. Fuck consciousness if it can’t deal with life, and Nigel is life.

94. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 27, 2008

93 Elena

I didn’t suggest Nigel should be banned, and I don’t think anyone else did, either. I just answered your question, Elena–why don’t more people participate? There are more than one or two reasons, I’m sure, but a few people take up a lot of space. And saying “just scroll down” don’t address it. It’s about self-indulgence.

95. lauralupa - May 27, 2008

a couple of things:

I have heard about the 64 blowjobs too, from someone who was in the Fellowship at the time.
Speaking of madness, isn’t this some of the craziest shit you have ever heard? I think it could be submitted to the Guinness World Records. Maybe Robert was inspired by that porn star who had sex with I forget how many guys in one day. Or was it just divine inspiration? Anyway, if any of the blessed 64 would be willing to come out in the open and tell us his side of the story that would be a lovely thought, would it not?

Nigel, I personally have the feeling that you might be going through what some call a phase of spiritual emergency or crisis. Please check this website out, I think it contains valuable information.

http://www.spiritualcrisisnetwork.org.uk/resources.htm#Websites

Elena, sister, please stop with the negative wolves associations, my avatar is getting a bum rap! :.)

96. Draco - May 27, 2008

I heard the story about the 64 blowjobs from several sources. The exact number was uncertain, but it was in that region. Of course, most of them didn’t know that they were part of this huge celebration. I knew one student who had been out of favor sexually for a while (and had done his best to refuse Robert’s more extreme sexual demands) but was invited to see Robert on R’s birthday, where he was given a little bit of attention, a quick blowjob and then ushered out. He was very upset to discover later on that he had been part of this fellatio extravaganza. He also started realizing how guilty he had been feeling for refusing Robert anal sex. Robert kept telling him that he was being a denying force for C Influence. He’s still in though. Girard gave him a sustained intellectual battering (without ever addressing any of the abuse issues that the student brought up) and persuaded him to stay.

97. Vinnie the Fish - May 27, 2008

Elena is right, there’s only so many minutes in a day.
Robert could make a living as an oral teacher if he’s that proficient.. Assuming he was at it for 8 hours solid, that’s 8 per hour, under 8 minutes per blow. Pretty fast considering physical beauty is obviously not a factor! I have girlfriends who could learn a lot from him. Anna will know the full story, where is she! Did he swallow? That would be about about a kilo wouldn’t it? That must sit well in the stomach…..

98. lauralupa - May 27, 2008

“Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m 64?”

“Yes, Dear Leader, we most certainly do”

BTW Vinnie, are you still a bubble blowing part time bubbler?

99. Vinnie the Fish - May 27, 2008

White bubbles you mean? No thanks.

100. lauralupa - May 27, 2008

Actually, that’s not what I meant. It was just my convoluted way of asking if you are still a paying member of the FoF. I hope you don’t mind me asking.

101. Draco - May 27, 2008

Unfortunately, Robert doesn’t hold the world record. That goes to Summer Nyte who managed 249 in the space of 14 hours.
http://www.nashvillescene.com/Stories/Cover_Story/2006/02/09/zOral_History/index.shtml

102. Allan S - May 27, 2008

Bruce, personally I think you bring a great mix of humour and seriousness to some really important issues, not least what seems to be happening at the moment. I generally go through phases on the blog of reading (those who I want to read) and then very occasionally posting. I think on the whole the way I feel about the blog falls into the Bruce camp.

From a fairly dispassionate point of view Nigel, you’re post are bewildering. The majority of the time I do not have a clue what you are talking about, sorry.

Vinnie, you’re a funny guy…if you know what I mean.

103. veramente - May 27, 2008

87 Arthur

Please, do not say goodbye! Unless you are taking a road trip and cannot access a computer, maybe you are tired and feel a bit spent like me sometimes often rehashing the past? but we need to keep talking and try to make some sense.

I like what Lauralupa said:

“My one question to all is:
if you truly care for the preservation of this feeding ground,
will you still be willing to bring food to the table?”

There many good chefs here…and also sou-chefs.
What counts is trying serving from your own truth and integrity.

104. Vinnie the Fish - May 27, 2008

i am

105. Vinnie the Fish - May 27, 2008

Do I know what you mean? I’m not sure Allan, are you insinuating something?

106. Allan S - May 27, 2008

No I am not Vinnie. The “…if you know what I mean” was supposed to have the opposite affect to what it had. I definitely do not think you are a funny guy as in a funny sort of a guy. I genuinely think you are a funny guy…if that helps. English is so imprecise at times, don’t you think? It causes many of the problems we seem to experience through blogs and emails..

107. Vinnie the Fish - May 27, 2008

Definitely, I have had so many problems with people who misinterpret my wicked wit…. glad you appreciate it! 🙂

108. Associated Press - May 27, 2008

lauralupa – May 27, 2008 – 36/#98

“Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m 64?”

This song was sung by a chorus, and performed in pantomime with theatrical aplomb, upon the birthday occasion mentioned above. A little like this YouTube:

Yellow Submarine – When I’m 64: 2:37:

109. lauralupa - May 27, 2008

AP 107

why I am not surprised? it’s so appropriate…

110. Mick Danger - May 27, 2008

Shiek – The blog link on the GF site no longer goes to the current page/chapter. And yes there are intentional and unintentional efforts to wound the blog. This just makes the blog angry.

111. brucelevy - May 27, 2008

109. Mick Danger

“This just makes the blog angry.”

And you don’t want to make the blog angry.

Hulk

112. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - May 27, 2008

101 is newly moderated.

Mick Danger: I have not seen any deliberate attacks on the blog in quite a while, months really. There is a lot of ego, a lot of personal attacks, but unless you view this place as a goal-orientated tool to bringing down the FoF (which it was never meant to be) then very little damage is being done. Discussion can be dirty, boring, even nonsensical, as far as I am concerned. If we want to keep the premise of ‘free speech’ going then I would say that it’s even necessary.

As for the GF site, I have nothing to do with it, if you want to inform the administrators there then please feel free to. There is connection between the blog and any other FoF / anti-FoF resource.

113. Mick Danger - May 27, 2008

Right on, Shiek. I was just making some observations, there was no criticism intended. You’re a fine dictator no matter what they say.

114. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - May 27, 2008

No criticism taken, I have a way of sounding very aggressive when I try to communicate seriously, I did not feel criticized, neither did I intend to sound defensive. Sometimes it’s necessary to explain things in order to avoid confusion and unnecessary assumptions.

115. paulshabram - May 27, 2008

lauralupa:
“My one question to all is:
if you truly care for the preservation of this feeding ground,
will you still be willing to bring food to the table?”

Obviously I do care… enough to use my real name (I was inspired to do so by Bruce and Nigel).

62. ton – May 26, 2008
“paul 52
… i think i understand your point that the disease has spread to the surrounding tissues in the fellowship of friends, personally, i wouldn’t dismiss or diminish any degree of focus on RB as “merely the necrotic center of the canker.” treatment of the necrotic center may not cure the disease, but it does offer an approach to treating the illness.”

I don’t disagree, yet Robert has been/will be his worst enemy and most effective detractor. His utter degradation speaks clearly to those around him. RB is a very powerful sociopath, but I highly doubt that those that are abused by him would find themselves in his grip without the help and pressure of others. Most of those stoking the fires are doing so unwittingly.
Think back to your first introduction to the IDEA of Robert the Teacher. You probably did not know him, you heard about him. You heard stories told to others bolster the notion that he was a conscious being. Did you join the FOF knowing RB was a sexual predator?
The setup for the con is at the margins… where the tissue is still healthy. Take this support away and the con collapses. What could be worse for Robert anyway? With no resources to protect him he will not be able to avoid the consequences.
Paul

116. veramente - May 27, 2008

I will be unable to post for a while, but this is not a goodbye…
Au revoir!!! : )

Blessing

On the day when
the weight deadens
on your shoulders
and you stumble,
may the clay dance
to balance you.
And when your eyes
freeze behind
the grey window
and the ghost of loss
gets in to you,
may a flock of colours,
indigo, red, green,
and azure blue
come to awaken in you
a meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
in the currach of thought
and a stain of ocean
blackens beneath you,
may there come across the waters
a path of yellow moonlight
to bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
may the clarity of light be yours,
may the fluency of the ocean be yours,
may the protection of the ancestors be yours.
And so may a slow
wind work these words
of love around you,
an invisible cloak
to mind your life.

(by: John O’Donohue)

117. Another Name - May 27, 2008

Dear all,

I am confused: The fellowship states the David was 80.000 dollars. 10.000 cash and the rest of the amount bartered.

Others say it is 350.000-375.000 dollars?

Anybody more details…for my information and clarification needs.
Where was it bought, in Italy or in USA?
How was it transported?
Which company ?

y

118. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

Vera mente
Your post was impelling gloriously beautiful! (i see your true colours -lyrical balladical traditionally modern song ‘the modern man’ -whitman – “That’s Why I Love you” continuance of said song. Oh how amazing this Crisis; Christ is absractley pure brilliance you are. CGI ‘we be anacronyms, n’n s**t’ as the jungle tribe warriors Zulu’s announce. I have understepped, gone ahead of time and limitations that elena suggested and sheik ‘as the wide vessel of the universe’ (chorus before the major battle [Henry V]) – has to deal our cards with – REB is a 10 of Clubs them ‘io so off to work they go’ – no heart; no mind – no life! A small business person takes a 3-1 odds workability chance on a dream for the ‘common good’ market-place. REB has gone totally out of it. ICT – Information COMMUCATION Technology – is just that. Bugger Burdensome has turned a ‘new computer religion’ (Hue and Cry – ‘Remote’) backwards from Windows of the Soul (X)cellent (P)rize (film Highlander) to My Sodomy – Doze and Dying of the ‘Light’ (spark intelligence which the Lord Giveth and doth not take away from all Faithful) to below Valhallah – the resting place of the souls of the birds of the air and the beasts of the field of their dreams and the (e)fishensea. To Abyss, Burton; and be replaced with the Ultimate Redemption ‘the biggest comeback since Lazarus’. No more Book of Numbers until the male paranoid-schizophrenics can deal with it on the blog. My Dragon Claws were numbed to STOP the gathering hoards and I act freely. From an Impetuous One to the lovers ‘who pay no heed to my craft’ (Dylan Thomas). n…..

119. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

pauls abraham the father of the old and therefore basic testament – I cannot but be responsive Treat Me Gently Baby Tina Re-Turner. You are so on target – NO SINNING Exactly as my dear natural mum used to say to all imputaion of her ‘caritas’. love…..n…..

120. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

108 Associated Press
Credit where credit is due that is the only credit worth anything (That can teach the Californian LandLords a thing or a thousand). John Lennon -the most poeticaly ‘simply peopled’ aspect of music. n.

121. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

103 veramente – if you love them let them go – I know not not where they go; but I know they go along the wide vessels of the Universe -Whitman….

122. nigel harris price - May 27, 2008

“Are you ready for this; are you sitting on the edge of your seat? (Queen). Colour theory from the ‘de haut en bas’.

White – the abstraced Will of Christ
Black – the Master of the Holding Laws, The Holy Invisibilty King
Purple – The Humanitarina Cloak of Heavenly Majesteria
Indigo – Ninja Nimble Martial Artists
Blue – Training Never forget your Calling
Green – Heaven
Orange – Love of Three Laws of the de Falla(en)
Red – Rememberance of those who have fought and died for the calling against dictatorship

“I believe in the Resurrectionn of the dead etc….

“Try it out; do not take my word for it” Ouspensky

Open Sky US…..N…..

123. paulshabram - May 27, 2008

Nigel,
You’re breakin’ my heart, man. Your machine is stuck on the spin cycle. Maybe it’ time to call in to whoever you usually get help from.
Please take care of yourself,
Paul

124. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 28, 2008

#123 I’ve been trying to think of something to say but so far nothing appropriate has come up. I’m trying to be kind. So I think I’ll stay silent for a little while longer and see if the spin cycle stops and the blog gets well rinsed by someone else so we can continue the cleansing process.

125. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 28, 2008

122 nigel harris price
124 wakeuplittlesuzywakeup

HOW ABOUT THIS:

NIGEL, everyone here supports your participation if it is at all productive and furthers the general purposes of this blog. At the moment, you appear unable to communicate in a way that we can understand, or to which we can offer meaningful responses.

The quantity of your posts also seems out of control–more than one out of every four posts on this page is yours. We understand you don’t mean to be disruptive, but nonetheless, try to see that you are.

We would like to help you, but we don’t feel we can do so effectively through this blog right now. We ask you to try to see that your participation right now is not contributing to the good of this blog, and is in fact undermining it, and may not be helping you very much, either.

We ask that you try to respect the rights of those who seek to use this blog to benefit not only themselves but many others, and that you try to withhold your further participation until you are able to better control your impulses. We look forward to hearing more from you when that happens.

126. WhaleRider - May 28, 2008

Once Nigel gets some sleep, he’ll come back to Earth, and we will be waiting here for him with open arms. His condition comes and goes, pretty much like emotions wax and wane. He’ll be OK. But I wouldn’t recommend anyone suggest he mess with his medications. People are prescribed the medications he is taking for good reason.

You know, as I age, I think a good indicator of mental health is being able to get a good night’s sleep, without the use of drugs or alcohol…just a full night of uninterrupted, deep sleep…with a few good dreams thrown in for personal growth.

127. Another Name - May 28, 2008

Dear all,

Remember this blog is about the fellowship of friends and Robert Burton. Mr Burton bought a 8 feet replica statue of David from Michel Angelo
I am confused: The fellowship states the David was 80.000 dollars. 10.000 cash and the rest of the amount bartered.

Others say it is 350.000-375.000 dollars?

Anybody more details…for my information and clarification needs.
Where was it bought, in Italy or in USA?
How was it transported?
Which company ?

128. nigel harris price - May 28, 2008

Dear Whalerider One to Sexuality Contained for Courtesy and Passion…………

ANTHEM…let us thank Tim Rice (true family)

“No man, no madness, though this sad hour may prevail,
Can possess, conquer my country’s heart; they rise to fail.
She is Eternal, through Wars Death and Despair;
When no flags flew, when no armies stood. my land was born.
And you ask me why I love her……(I may have got this back to front-ish?!)

BUT AS ELENA WISHED AND AS ERIC NIGTINGALE BEGGED OF ME IN MY MAJOR BREAKDOWN TO BUILD UP IN THE EXEMPLIFIED MASTER GAME OF “CHESS” – THAT IS THE MUSICAL SW FROM…..THE ESSENCE IS THERE – nuff said – I must retire awhile; my head hurts (WHITMAN).

129. nigel harris price - May 28, 2008

Waler -Orca
A practical Call of Constructive Thought came to me while relaxing into my perfumes bath this Morning Glory…

“Smell Good, FEEL good look good”

Personal hygiene is a good counter agin’
depression/confusion/tramp feature.

“Self love my lieg is not so vile a sin as self-neglecting” Le Dauphin.
…..dolphin communicates Henry V……

130. Another Name - May 28, 2008

Sorry 18 feet statue

131. Vinnie the Fish - May 28, 2008

What’s your story Nigel? Is that your real name?

132. Another Name - May 28, 2008

Like this you tube on spirituality and letting it go from Allen Clements

133. innernaut - May 28, 2008

I’ve been following the blog’s latest twists and turns, and I second WhaleRider’s suggestion: it is completely irresponsible to urge someone in Nigel’s state to change or, my god, eliminate their meds. He has told us repeatedly that he is bipolar, and he is clearly in the middle of a full-blown manic episode. He is taking heavy-duty anti-psychotics — there’s a reason for that, and unless you are a fully qualified psychiatrist, you should just encourage him to see the person whose care he is under and leave it at that.

The constant quotes and unintelligible language is part of the manic phase: “Flight of ideas,” it’s called, where one’s thoughts seem far more brilliant and understandable than they in fact are.

It’s nice if someone can get another off his anti-depressants, and be there to nurse him through, but we are in a different league here. After flying so high, Nigel’s crash is going to be difficult, and without his meds, the results will be predictably tragic.

See your doctor Nigel. I hope you can experience healing.

131 Vinnie the Fish

Where have you been?

134. Yesri Baba - May 28, 2008

“flight of ideas” where one’s thoughts seem far more brilliant and understsandable than they in fact are.

Hey, I got that. Seems to be epidemic.

135. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - May 28, 2008

132 is newly moderated.

136. innernaut - May 28, 2008

132 Another Name

Thanks for the Alan Clements video. It reminds me of something that happened very early in my FOF time, about 1981.

I was in the Boston center, and at one point I was dispatched, along with two other students, to visit the Yale library in New Haven, Connecticut. Our assignment was to rifle through the “Ouspensky papers,” which had been donated to the university after O’s death.

We drove down there, and signed in. We were ushered to a room, where we could select the boxes we were interested in viewing. There were about 50 of them, mostly meeting transcripts covering 25 years or so, right up to his death. We chose a cross-section, with various dates, and got a few boxes brought to us. We were not allowed to make copies. We had to write down whatever we were interested in, using only a pencil and paper the library issued to us.

The boxes were crammed full of typewritten pages. Mostly just stuff that could have come from “The Fourth Way” — not terribly interesting. But there was one box — the last box, chronologically — that I was really interested in. I had read about O’s last, bizarre meetings, and I was wondering if they were transcribed. They were, so I spent almost my whole allotted time copying down the questions and O’s strange answers.

The gist of what he said is known: he told his students to “abandon the system,” saying that it was basically BS. Even back then, I felt strangely liberated; not that I had the courage to chuck it all aside then, but that one day I would be free of it. I noticed this feeling then, but pushed it aside, because what did that say about the System I had devoted my life too, that I couldn’t wait to be free of it?

After copying down many pages of this very interesting stuff, one of the students did a guilt trip on me, saying we shouldn’t be spending so much time on “unhelpful” material. Hmmm… so party-line Ouspensky is “good,” and Ouspensky when he finally sounds like he’s a human being and is telling the truth is “bad.”

This experience was probably the beginning of the end for me, in terms of the System, though it would take many years before I had the courage to throw it all out — baby, bathwater, everything.

One more thing, which Alan Clements mentioned — getting rid of the notion of enlightenment means being able to live without the certainty that a dogmatic spiritual framework provides. If it helps you live sanely, then more power to you.

137. elena - May 28, 2008

The deadening frigidity with which love is forgotten
And the hands of the women who washed and changed
Not because love was the outspoken statement,
nor because it needed to be,
as it no longer is in the nurse, the therapist or the doctor;
the teacher, the musician or the governor.
There is a great deal more love in all of them
than any one is willing to acknowledge.

“Professionals” they call themselves because they do their job without feelings and an army of “frigids” stomps the world’s distress not because they are cold but because they think they have frozen.

Dissected from the few who once bore us in infamy we made a legion of copies. The idea of inner separation translated into external severing of the world. The parents were notified of their biological connection and the children were abandoned in their home.

There is a deadening of the source of life when the connections of the heart are allowed to dry up like plants without water. Re-membering those connections “heals.”
Each man must run his own course, recover his own steps, un-wind his own coil.
In doing so, it is not his self but the world what he recovers. Not the world’s form but its essence, not essence’s flowers but the essential roots. Not his self if his self is not the whole for the whole self is self less.

In recovering his own steps each man is unwinding the impediments he himself laid out as he imitated without will the steps of his legacy. To be is not the repetition of legacy but the innovation of forms: creation. Creation is original in its form but it is only the actualization of the origin in different forms. Like kaleidoscopes of light in which only the movement changes the impression without altering the original.

In recovering their own steps human beings do not return to the same garden but to Paradise. Behind each mother is The Mother and behind each father is The Father. Faced with The Mother, all mothers are forgiven. Faced with The Father, all men are forgiven. Each life is a returning to Paradise or rather an actualization of Paradise.

Grace is the quality of being of life. It has no other quality.

In recovering their own steps human beings decipher the code that was given to them to unwind. To sit long enough with the suffering of one’s legacy and thoroughly understand that it is not evil what makes life difficult as much as the fact that we’ve come only so far. Each human being treads the steps of all of humanity in a lifetime and moves from his self to the whole, if he moves. The process of moving from the whole to individuality is a falling rather than a movement.

Hell and Heaven are both on Earth. They thrive without constraints in the soul of man, which guarantees for each man that he may move from one to the other in his own time. Nothing is hidden, both Heaven and Hell are what a man can make for himself in his connectedness or disconnectedness to the rest. Disconnection creates suffering, connectedness creates healing and it happens instantly as one greets another with the full perception of the other’s being. It happens all the time in the interaction between people when there is no other intention than to do what the moment requires. It happens in all fields, from handing out directions to assisting a wounded man, buying or selling, giving, working, living.

It is in the magnifying glass through which we are looking at ourselves that we think we are so much more distorted than we are. We live in a time in which we exert pressure and fear on each other so that people are easier to dominate under the status quo. But we can and will continue to change the status quo as many are already doing and have always done. It is not about a new Cult but about a Culture that has never died. It is about remembering who one is as human beings where ever one is and with whom ever one happens to be.

138. innernaut - May 28, 2008

One more thing. When I asked the idolized “older students” what they thought Ouspensky meant when he said, “abandon the system,” they had many creative things to say. But in the end, what they essentially said was, “Don’t abandon the system.” That’s right, when O says abandon the system, what he really means is don’t abandon the system.

People sure act funny when their belief system is being threatened.

139. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 28, 2008

I personally find the System quite useful at times and refer to it. However, when I left the Fellowship now 13 years past I did abandon it. I needed to abandon it to allow other ideas in. I think if one continues to refer to nothing but the Fourth Way there is no room for anything else and it will become dogmatic. And since there are so many belief systems out there, some more practical than others, many do lead to a deeper understanding of things. However the present moment is available to each person no matter what belief system they find interesting and worth studying and it doesn’t take a belief system to access it.

140. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 28, 2008

In other words whether you’re doing the Sequence or the Hokey Pokey it doesn’t really matter. I personally find the Hokey Pokey more fun!

141. paulshabram - May 28, 2008

Just another voice:
125
I worked for a while in psychiatric unit attending “critical” care patients. It brought me into frequent contact with bipolar and schizophrenic patients during their extremes (the manic phase was awesome to observe). When Nigel gave us his pharmacopeia I was skeptical at first. Missing from his menu was lithium carbonate, but I have been out of it for decades (nor am I a physician) and do not know what the current treatment is. One of the features of the manic phase (as well as some schizophrenic episodes) was the communication seems non-sensical. I discovered, however, by sorting what was being said, that one could make some sense of the streaming words. Nigel post’s exhibit this, so i believe this event is genuine. Whalerider is correct Nigel will be past this in no time. i just don’t have time to sort it all out (you can do this yourself by grouping sentences with like subjects together, you will sometimes get a cogent thought), yet Nigel did give us one of his gems:

Nigel 118 “-has to deal our cards with – REB is a 10 of Clubs them ‘io so off to work they go’ – no heart; no mind – no life!”

REB has presented himself as a King of Hearts, but his behavior has been King of Clubs all along, Nigel seems to have seen this. RB’s chief feature he claims (now) is Greed, but it has always been Power. So when Robert talks about the King of Clubs working against you, he is really talking about himself.

Elena,
I will continue to be blunt… your post 137 feels like an intentional change of subject.

Paul

142. elena - May 28, 2008

Paul, are you trying to make me laugh too? What is there to be blunt about, dear? I didn’t know there was a constraint on the subjects we can talk about since you got here. Staying on that subject will not help the subject!

Innernaut, much appreciated your post, it is the closest to what I understand as the Fourth Way in a long time. I don’t defend Systems because Systems don’t matter but I don’t kill the horse when the saddle proves deficient.

143. Ill Never Tell - May 28, 2008

36/141 paulshabram – May 28, 2008 said:

‘REB has presented himself as a King of Hearts, but his behavior has been King of Clubs all along, Nigel seems to have seen this. RB’s chief feature he claims (now) is Greed, but it has always been Power. So when Robert talks about the King of Clubs working against you, he is really talking about himself.’

Yes, Nigel, and others, have been spot on from time to time at distinguishing the truth about others and themselves and acknowledging it by repeated verification. So, I in part agree with what you say, Paul, but not on the chief feature subject. Consider this:

“33/357 on April 30, 2008 at 9:13 pm Bares Reposting:

‘In RB’s case, he even said, many, many years ago, that his chief feature was greed, but people choose to see his greed as something other than greed.’

Chief feature not greed. Just said was so to justify the behaviours and make it look like knowledge of himself. True chief feature is fear. The greed, dominance, power, vanity, lunatic, etc., effused by that machine is the smoke screen hiding the fear chief feature. Poor Booby is scared sh!tless and must continuously cram an endless fountain of immortal drink into this bottomless pit without ever having possibility of satisfaction.”

For instance, who on Earth needs a full sized replica of the MicheloAngelo David statue? Some see exquisite beauty in that sculpture, but others see near grotesque caricaturization. Some just want to see disproportionate body parts and/or to relish in the super big penis. (As if certain persons have not looked at enough penises for one life time.) This acquisition contributes further to the gaudy appearance of the Fellowship of Friends property becoming more like Las Vegas every day. Anybody up for building a pyramid?

Care to see the statue? You can see it on the Greater Fellowship site under ‘FOF.History.Project’s Page.’ You can find an image named ‘NoMoreKneelingMay08.jpg.’

You can also try this link if you are already logged on to the GF site:
http://greaterfellowship.ning.com/photo/photo/show?id=799715%3APhoto%3A103328

144. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 28, 2008

#143: Fear is behind all features.

145. Ill Never Tell - May 28, 2008

“144. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup – May 28, 2008

#143: Fear is behind all features.”

Yes, and also, in this case mentioned, it is the chief feature.

146. somebody - May 28, 2008

143. Your link does not work. Is this a correct image of David? 🙂

147. God Laughing - May 28, 2008

Wow, that’s the new David?

No wonder he cost a ton of money
He must way a ton!

148. God Laughing - May 28, 2008

146. HAHAHA

Somebody’s David

149. brucelevy - May 29, 2008

145. Ill Never Tell

I’ll have to respectfully disagree. Back in the 70’s and 80’s RB said his chief feature was dominance. I can see a lot of that, but having been around him for a substantial period, in all sorts of situations, I’d have to go with the school of thought that it is greed, with a substantial helping of ALL THE OTHERS.
I know fear intimately, and RB never appeared to me to have that as his primary filter.

150. brucelevy - May 29, 2008

145. Ill Never Tell

I’d think he’d love to have people think it was fear, as that would give him more of the aura of passive victim, or someone who has conquered his c.f and made it his strength. Both pure bull shit.

151. brucelevy - May 29, 2008

And sociopaths are not really subject to “fear” as we know it, just as they are not subject to emotions as we know them. Fear implies some kind of social consciousness and conscience, as bent as it might be. They might experience fear right before they pull the switch and fry a sociopathic murderer. Fear is not something RB needs to work on.

152. dream catcher - May 29, 2008

Spot on, Bruce!

Definition: of Greed
1 Excessive desire to acquire or possess more (especially more material wealth) than one needs or deserves

2 Reprehensible acquisitiveness; insatiable desire for wealth (personified as one of the deadly sins)

excessive desire to possess or dominate

153. dream catcher - May 29, 2008

Spot on, Bruce!

Definition of Greed:
1 Excessive desire to acquire or possess more (especially more material wealth) than one needs or deserves

2 Reprehensible acquisitiveness; insatiable desire for wealth (personified as one of the deadly sins)

excessive desire to possess or dominate

154. paulshabram - May 29, 2008

RB told would try on different CF’s like different shirts. I don’t see the greed and he certainly never exhibited fear. I agree that acquisitions and wealth look like greediness, but I think you’ll find that none of it is in his name (and that is inconsistent with the CF of greed that I saw in others). He also uses the trapping of wealth and freely distributes it to gain power over people. I see the increasing demands for money and other things and the use of fear as feeding the power/dominance aspect. The use of fear is particularly telltale. He has no problem spending money which the people with Greed that I knew definately had.

But the point I make is that he creates an image of himself that is false, and as Bruce says, claims he has conquered his faults. This allows the “sheep” to continue following with confidence.

127. Another Name
Why does this $ for Davey matter to you? Is it critical for a decision process?
Paul

155. brucelevy - May 29, 2008

154. paulshabram

I can see some of what you’re saying. On the other hand, I often witnessed with RB examples of grasping, fear of loss, avarice, needing more than one of something, often to the point of obsessive compulsion. He’s a sociopath…as long as the money flow churns, he has no thought for the possibility of it running out, that’s just not a possibility to a sociopathic mind. There’s no real sense of past and future in relation to their present actions
His generosity is often an outlet for two purposes. To get rid of the things he’s tired of so he can replace them (cloths, bright shiny objects) or to dress his harem boys like Oscar Wilde on acid.
I almost think that convenient labels like c.f. get marginalized simply by trying to apply them logically to a severely broken machine, like RB. Aren’t the “work ideas” supposed to be relevant to someone with some semblance of “normalcy” It’s like saying Hitler was misunderstood as a child.

156. brucelevy - May 29, 2008

Paul, as for it not being in his name…come on, you know better than that. It doesn’t have to be in his name for him to “own” something or “control” something. He’s pulled that “not in his name” bull shit from the beginning, just like his celibacy bullshit.

157. Innernaut - May 29, 2008

Paul, regarding Nigel’s bipolar meds, he said he was taking Depakote. That’s considered a viable alternative — plus Depakote has nowhere near the terrible side-effects of Lithium.

However, I did note the anti-psychotics and wondered what they were for. But of course, I’m not a doctor.

158. WhaleRider - May 29, 2008

Nigel:
“Smell Good, FEEL good look good”

Sounds good to me. So do the sounds of Orcas and dolphins…

159. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 29, 2008

154 paulshabram

Don’t see the greed. Hmmm.

The same behavior can certainly be viewed as reflecting more than one feature, and with RB there was always plenty of evidence of several different features (dominance being pretty prevalent), but to me, there was greed everywhere I looked. RB lived like a raja in the foothills, even when most of those around him were living under tables in the Lodge or in tents. I can see him sucking the little bones of the cornish game hens he would eat for breakfast — for breakfast! — and then offer me the remnants. Shlepping around in his cashmere suits and Gucci loafers and heavy gold chains while those around him worked in the mud in t-shirts. Being chauffered in a Rolls in friggin’ Oregon House. Guzzling fine wine and sweetmeats in the ramshackle Lodge. Sitting at his faux-Louis XV (or was it XVI?) desk and caressing his Persian rugs (“look, dear, and how many knots. It is wonderful, is it not?”) in the Blake Cottage, one step above a trailer home. Come on.

And it only got worse. The cufflinks, the cameos, the paintings, the studs, the watches. Going to the most expensive restaurants in every city, while having the second-tier boys grab sandwiches. Ordering Peking Duck at the Nut Tree (“you may order from this side of the menu, dear”). If there was any opportunity to indulge his desire to surround himself in luxury he was down with it.

And, of course, the cock-sucking. We’re not talking about the What, just the How Many and How Often. And the frantic need to continually acquire all of it. Traveling here, there, everywhere to troll for boys, for jewelry, for “impressions,” for fancy restaurants, for donations. And finally charging people just to sit in the same room with him.

Sure, I can see several features in this–I’ve always felt he’s a living caricature of the Seven Deadly Sins, or at least five or six of ’em. But if he isn’t greedy, I don’t know who is.

160. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 29, 2008

I’ll stick with the Seven Deadly Zins thank you.

161. Another Name - May 29, 2008

http/greaterfellowship.ning.com/photo/photo/show?id=799715%3APhoto%3A103328

Did you all notice the hills? The vines are gone…….., Robert forgot to put a little stack away to honor the hills and keep the vines.

SAD.

162. Yesri Baba - May 29, 2008

Robert Burton’s chief feature (by the way this ‘feature’ stuff is bullshit) is lying.

163. lauralupa - May 29, 2008

I am with Yesri in feeling that we should try to think out of the box in regards to “features” and “chief features”.

After all, where was the list we worked with so religiously originated?

I have no idea. Does anyone know if it was originally in Gurdjieff’s teachings? I haven’t read Ouspenski in years, but I can’t recall him specifically making a list of chief features.

For a different perspective, just take a look at these excerpts taken from different Fourth Way related websites:

“Patterson’s thesis is that Ouspensky, Orage, and Bennett failed Gurdjieff and his mission to ‘save the world from destroying itself’ by not being able to surmount their respective ‘chief features.’ For Ouspensky, this meant his ‘independence of mind.’ For Orage, it meant his ‘feelings,’ evidenced in his marriage to Jessie Dwight against the druthers of his guru. And for Bennett, it was his ‘thirst for adventure.”…

“In the third horizontal row on the Chart is the Aspect Gurdjieff called “chief feature”, but which I shortened to just “Feature”. The seven Features are Martyrdom, Impatience, Lowliness, Arrogance, Renunciation, Selfishness, and Stubbornness. “…

“The Nine Personality Types and the Nine Capital Tendencies
The Perfectionist anger
The Giver pride
The Performer deceit
The Romantic envy
The Observer avarice
The Trooper fear
The Epicure gluttony
The Boss lust
The Mediator sloth”

so, if you still feel a compulsion to categorize vices, it might be time to freshen up and work on a different list, or to be even more daring and create your own…

http://www.deadlysins.com/features/choice.html

164. Draco - May 29, 2008

163, Laura, that’s a good point about chief features. In G & O chief feature was something particular to oneself which one could identify sometimes with the help of a teacher. It wasn’t just one of a list of labels to choose from. Similarly, in G & O a photograph was a way of catching *oneself* and observing as much of oneself in the moment as possible. In the Fellowship it became a way if exerting social pressure.

Robert has to feel right and feel that he’s “winning” all the time. Students were receiving vouchers if they spent time bidding on eBay at the last minute to win items for him. One of the most absurd of his projects involved a small chain of steak restaurants. They were offering a free meal for anyone who ate at each of their branches. Robert decided that he wanted this, so his journeys were planned around the cities where this steak restaurant had an outlet. After a while he only had one restaurant to visit but it wasn’t in a city that he wanted to visit and his indulgences were leading him elsewhere. So he flew two of his entourage out to the last restaurant just so that they could get the coupon for a free meal. How absolutely pointless!

165. Vinnie the Fish - May 29, 2008

Innernaut, I bin nowhere special, just haven’t been reading this blog much for a while. Would be good if it was all in one file so you could search for the juicy bits.
‘fist’
‘elbow’

urgh

166. lauralupa - May 29, 2008

Draco, thanks for your stories, please keep them coming!
Did you leave recently?
I was particularly affected by the one you posted at #96:

“I knew one student who had been out of favor sexually for a while (and had done his best to refuse Robert’s more extreme sexual demands) but was invited to see Robert on R’s birthday, where he was given a little bit of attention, a quick blowjob and then ushered out. He was very upset to discover later on that he had been part of this fellatio extravaganza. He also started realizing how guilty he had been feeling for refusing Robert anal sex. Robert kept telling him that he was being a denying force for C Influence. He’s still in though. Girard gave him a sustained intellectual battering (without ever addressing any of the abuse issues that the student brought up) and persuaded him to stay.”

the very idea that someone could feel guilty about refusing to be sodomized by his “Spiritual Leader”…
how much brainwashing and fallacious thinking does it take to create such monstruous memes?

167. Innernaut - May 29, 2008

Lauralupa 163

“so, if you still feel a compulsion to categorize vices, it might be time to freshen up and work on a different list, or to be even more daring and create your own…”

Yes, this is why I am now convinced 99% of the System is BS, or at least arbitrary divisions. Not that it isn’t based on some keen observation, but that one could make a framework of 15 body types and different divisions of centers, etc, and still make it work.

The exception for me is self-remembering, which has validity, but can be found in plenty of other areas, such as mindfulness, and so on.

168. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 29, 2008

Lauralupa 163

“so, if you still feel a compulsion to categorize vices, it might be time to freshen up and work on a different list, or to be even more daring and create your own.

To continually refer back to Fellowship ideas, no matter how ‘real’ they seem, is emotional entrapment. It continues the ‘I versus them’ mentality within us and separates us from the whole or the interconnectedness we might feel with the world.

169. paulshabram - May 29, 2008

Bruce and just another voice

You see Greed differently than I do. Ebenezer Scrooge had a Greed feature, Robert is more like Caligula The resemblance of behavior is remarkable, bizarre sex rituals, declared himself a goddess, trashed the Roman treasury, made a horse a Senator etc. In thinking about this I accept your argument that the categorization belongs to normal people as being dead on. How could I categorize Caligula or Nero in any other way than morally and mentally insane…Good call.

Lauralupa and wakeuplittlesuzywakeup
Categorizing stuff is the limitation of language and since I can’t just beam my thoughts to you I reluctantly use “work language” since it is part of our common experience that spans nearly four decades.

170. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 29, 2008

#169: Lauralupa and wakeuplittlesuzywakeup

Categorizing stuff is the limitation of language and since I can’t just beam my thoughts to you I reluctantly use “work language” since it is part of our common experience that spans nearly four decades.

My answer to you is try anyway. It gets easier.

171. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 29, 2008

#167 ‘The exception for me is self-remembering, which has validity, but can be found in plenty of other areas, such as mindfulness, and so on.’

I absolutely agree. Call it what you will, but any technique that sheds light on automatic left brain chatter helps one understand that we are not that.

172. dream catcher - May 29, 2008

I have heard stories about students playing tennis with RB
which would start out as a joyful sporty event and then turned
nightmarish if the person actual won! RB would become very negative.
The next time that person payed she gave up the sportive approach and made sure RB won. When I heard those stories I brushed them aside.
Only now do I realize how insane such behavior is.

173. paulshabram - May 29, 2008

172.
I never saw anything like that, but RB was too fat to play tennis. I heard he had played with some people early in the FOF. I did witness plenty of “negativity” for which he would accept the ‘photograph’ including banging his fist on his car etc.
On “crystallization” eve he was downright morose, very depressed. The next day, after the lame “thunder clap” story, which has changed somewhat over the years, it seemed like he was just going through the motions. I got the impression he really thought something was going to happen and was very disappointed.

174. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 29, 2008

172 dream catcher
173 paulshabram

In private, RB often displayed the emotional maturity of a child. This was particularly evident when he didn’t get what he wanted. Not giving him sex on demand would result in petulant sulking at best. Since another thing he wanted was to always be the focus of attention, or at least the acknowledged Master, any behavior that might distract attention from him would quickly be photographed.

In public he did a great job of appearing kindly, but we didn’t know him before the Fellowship–I suspect his outwatd manner was never much different. Also, I suspect there are more than a few people who can act nice in public when they have their very own kingdom, populated by worshipful servants that rush to satisfy their every whim. He didn’t get his corns stepped on all that often, but when he did, he was not very impressive.

As for “crystallization,” I’d like to know whether any has ever heard or read any credible account of anyone else having had a similar experience. I’ve read more than my share of accounts of “enlightenment experiences,” and despite their variety, I think RB’s story was a complete fabrication.

175. zannos - May 29, 2008

The advantage of any classification system–and the Fellowship provided lots of them: body types, features, centers of gravity, triads, influences, worlds, organums (would that be organa?), etc.–
is that it provides a way to cut little chunks of experience out of the herd to examine them and see if they have anything of value to impart. The rational mind simply can’t take on all of experience at once, so in order to talk or write about that baffling whatever-it-is that we call “reality,” we have to have classifications. Ultimately these are only useful as ways of organizing observations. If we start to think these classifications have anything much to do with reality, we are lying to ourselves and hampering our ability to observe. And that goes for all the taxonomies of the hard sciences as well, or so it seems to me.

176. Yesri Baba - May 29, 2008

174 JAVOH

I asked that same question some 15 or 20 pages back and there was no response. I have not seen reference to anything like ‘crystallization’ in the writings of any other teaching that I have looked at.
The only reference I could come up with was some chick in the bible who turned around and turned into a pillar of salt.
Maybe someone will come up with some examples now.
Maybe it is a big pile of horse hooey.

177. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 29, 2008

176 Yesri Baba

There are certainly accounts of dramatic, profound and seemingly permanent transformations that have occurred to people that seem different from the experiences of nirvana, etc. (Meher Baba and Ramana Maharshi are examples), and calling it “crystallization” doesn’t trouble me. I have no reason to doubt Gurdjieff was referring to something real when he talked about it. But I know of no case in which someone knew it was coming on a certain date and rented a hotel room to sit around and wait for it, or where it was accompanied by a sound and light show, or where the only observable difference between the person before and after was that after, he went around claiming to be a different numbered man. (Also, I’ve never heard of anyone claiming that Meher Baba or Ramana Maharshi went around saying that their behavior, which would otherwise be seen as pathologically destructive and self-indulgent, was really just fine, and in fact evidence of their exalted state, because they now had a different number.)

I consider RB mentally ill, but at the same time, he was a classic huckster who saw his opening and took it.

178. paulshabram - May 29, 2008

174 J.A.V.O.H
I was talking about RB’s private behavior.

RB was manipulative, persistent but patient with me in trying to get me to have sex with him. He finally gave up saying something like “some people’s instinctive center won’t allow certain things” to which I replied “No, it won’t”, but I was thinking “neither will any other of my centers.” He knew he wouldn’t get anywhere with me. He never attempted to punish me nor did he pitch a fit for my non-compliance.

At the time he was implying to the membership that he was heterosexual and was celibate. But he had confirmed what other older (female) members had warned me about… he was homosexual and “he likes boys you know”.

I have never been ‘homophobic’, that is other peoples sexual preference do not matter to me, but that tolerance was occasional misunderstood. I thought this was just another case of that. The lie, however, indicated problems with Robert being conscious and I concentrated on dealing with that conundrum for a couple of years. The “final straw” for me was that after making such a big deal out of “casting out a soul” (making somebody leave the FOF) for only the worst “criminal” activity, Robert kicked a male student out for no other reason other than being gay. He seem to regard gay relationships as criminal. Taking together all I had seen and experienced along with this episode, there simply was no way that RB was the real thing. I had verified. So I left (it felt like escaping). I guess I was lucky to leave with mostly good memories.

I realize now that RB was probably getting results with other young heterosexual males (I don’t think he liked gay men, but maybe that changed). It is clear that his behavior has degraded and degraded. Once you recognize a person as sociopathic, it’s hard to have any compassion for that individual. I am utterly mortified by what I’ve read in this blog.

I personally witnessed critical moments when the FOF could have gone the way of Jonestown or Waco. I was there when a member came to the Blake Cottage suggesting that he do violence on somebody troublesome. Robert said no as part of the non-violence stance, but nobody should underestimate the potential. It’s a very dangerous situation. With complete moral corruption coupled with the “everybody will die but us” doomsday belief, that danger increases.

179. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 29, 2008

I couldn’t find anything described as crystallization except this excerpt from Gurdjieff and Ouspensky’s work. However, I did find it an interesting read after all the funny business and not so funny business that REB has been involved with. After possibly becoming a Man No. 5, I don’t really see how he fits the description of anything above that.

The Evolution of Consciousness
Riso & Hudson: Student Reunion Denver, 1998
Background to the Enneagram

If a person continues to work on himself, it is possible to become a “Man Number 5” in which unity of the Centers is fully achieved, and what is known is experienced equally in all of the Centers. If “Man Number 4” was a transitional stage, “Man Number 5” is what occurs when the transition has been completed. At this stage, there is no going back to previous lower levels of deformations and imbalances. A radical “crystallization” of the centers occurs in “Man Number 5” although this crystallization can be the result of “right work” or “wrong work”—leading, for example, to a Krishnamurti at one extreme or a Hitler at the other. This stage of development is therefore characterized by a kind of genius in the pursuit of our life purpose (in Gurdjieffian terms, our “aim”), although that purpose can still be balanced and beneficial or distorted and destructive depending on how the Centers have crystallized.

If work proceeds, then one can become a “Man Number 6” which is a transitional stage to “Man Number 7.” In the former, the remaining egocentric elements are burned off, causing immense suffering, although of a purgative kind. This is the “dark night of the soul” referred to in mystical writings, and entails the dissolution of identification with elements of the individual self such as the body, one’s personal feelings, and the constructs of the separate mind. Many of the qualities which will come to full flower in the next stage begin to emerge here, although they can still be lost, and not all aspects of the person are fully crystallized or permanent.

If, however, Inner Work continues, one may finally attain the state of being a “Man Number 7” in which one’s Essential faculties are all permanent, balanced, and fully functional. “Will, consciousness, permanent and unchangeable ‘I’, individuality, immortality, and many other properties, which in our blindness and ignorance, we ascribe to ourselves” now become available. The person’s identity has completely shifted from ego structures to Essence. In short, “Man Number 7” is the complete human being in all of his or her intended fullness, someone who is now ready and capable of embodying the Will of God. Such a person is perfect in that he or she becomes an expression of God in human form; hence, “Man Number 7” can be considered the stage of the avatar, or the boddhisattva, or the person who manifests Christ, or “Christ-consciousness

180. dream catcher - May 29, 2008

DEFINITION OF SHEEP

Any of various usually horned ruminant mammals of the genus Ovis in the family Bovidae, especially the domesticated species, raised in many breeds for wool, edible flesh, or skin.

a. A person regarded as timid, weak, or submissive.
b. One who is easily swayed or led.

181. God Laughing - May 29, 2008

The sheep thing is quite something.
There was a Galleria meeting with a doctored Tarot Card.
The Wheel of Fortune, this card has various animals going around the wheel including a goat, but the goat was replaced by sheep.

Goat: The animal and its horns were symbols of generation, regeneration, reproductive power, strength, and might. The Hebrew scapegoat, Azazel, was originally a Promethean figure, head of the six men-spirits (ishim) who came to instruct mankind. Its horns are seen on Pan, the Greek nature god; and on Capricorn, the goat-dolphin; etc.

182. WhaleRider - May 30, 2008

From a recent New Times Magazine:

“In social institutions, participants typically endow someone or something with special powers and obligations; they create roles like president or teacher or wife. Presidents and teachers and wives operate with special powers and obligations because, and only because, we all believe and act ‘as if’ they fill these roles and have these powers.

The remarkable human capacity for cooperation thus seems to have evolved mainly for interactions within the group. Such group-mindedness is a major cause of strife and suffering in the world today. The solution — more easily said than done — is to find new ways to define the group.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/25/magazine/25wwln-essay-t.html?_r=1&ref=magazine&oref=slogin

183. Vinnie the Fish - May 30, 2008

Does anyone know what’s behind the story about a bee or wasp flying around a meal and Robert flicking it into a candle and saying ‘thats how C influence handles B influence’?

184. Vinnie the Fish - May 30, 2008

Does anyone know what’s behind the story about a bee or wasp flying around a meal and Robert flicking it into a candle and saying ‘thats how C influence handles B influence’?

185. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 30, 2008

184 Vinnie the Fish

“Does anyone know what’s behind the story about a bee or wasp flying around a meal and Robert flicking it into a candle and saying ‘thats how C influence handles B influence’?”

_____________________________________________________________

Sure–narcissism, formatory thinking, and a desire to manipulate through fear.

RB took the idea of “C influence” from the Ouspensky books, in which is was used to mean objective knowledge, and distorted it into a Catholic-style cult of disembodied angels that speak only to dues-paying members, through the intermediary of the Pope-like person who invented “them.”

Having invented the C influence mythology (anyone else remember when he said “they” look like heat rising from a hot roadbed?), RB was free to justify any behavior by reference to “them.” The angels made me do it. Prove that they didn’t. And he could use them to scare us little children into believing that if we didn’t do what he told us to do, “they” would mercilessly incinerate us like a candle burns a wasp–just like they will “expunge” humanity because it declines to make teaching payments. The business about C influence and B influence makes no sense; it was just a way to invoke his Galactus-like power over us mere mortals.

186. paulshabram - May 30, 2008

179. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup
Wow!
I don’t think RB was a Man #5. I’m not sure he was a Man #4 since he was working on (or working) everybody around him and not on himself.
I believe he mistook an adrenaline rush for the “Third State”. He imagined himself to be something he was not and was therefore in “imagination” an not conscious a all.

Vinnie the Fish Vinnie the Fish

It brings up questions … If the “44” are these heavenly manifestations of “C Influence” and they are intend to, at the very least, allow the destruction of 6 billion people except the dutiful denizens of The Ranch, The Farm, Via Del Sol, Renaissance, Apollo, Isis, Neverland…oops wrong homosexual pedophile. Why would anyone want to be like them?

Would you take a single human life in exchange for enlightenment? Should my spiritual growth cause anyone else to suffer?

187. Innernaut - May 30, 2008

IIRC, RB was always fond of puns, the lowest form of humor. Didn’t he mean that’s the way C influence takes care of “bee” influence? Bad joke, nothing more.

188. Innernaut - May 30, 2008

186 paulshabram

A friend once told me that RB said C influence humiliated him when California didn’t fall into the sea. He wasn’t happy that millions of people didn’t die, only embarrassed.

189. paulshabram - May 30, 2008

188. Innernaut
And those that were there probably solemnly shook their heads in agreement.

190. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 30, 2008

Wow!
I don’t think RB was a Man #5. I’m not sure he was a Man #4 since he was working on (or working) everybody around him and not on himself.
I believe he mistook an adrenaline rush for the “Third State”. He imagined himself to be something he was not and was therefore in “imagination” an not conscious a all.

I really don’t know what he is or who he was, but I do know he has caused many people a lot of pain and suffering. I gave him the possibility of a man no. 5 but I really don’t know nor do I really care.

191. cobalt blue - May 30, 2008

It is not I that am here inside
But it is here inside what has become me.
I cannot leave because there is no me to take out.

I am the flowers that sit loudly at the entrance and the painted ceiling with my friend’s faces in their nakedness.
I am the lines, the chairs, the uni-form-ity to bear.

The order is me,
the cleanliness is mine,
the cold stillness with which everything repeats itself as I age,
echoes the soul’s icing as it crystallizes in its form.

When I die,
You will not say it is I who died but I who did not live,
they will lay me down in the ground where I buried myself so long ago,
willingly, devotedly,
blindly.

We meet.
The half of you that married me becomes hard and longs to come inside of me.
The half of me that married you becomes soft and opens like a flower.

We kiss and taste for the first time, for the last time.
The eyes get wet, the soul searches for a place to land and
We both fall into the void of two worlds that never met.

“I love you”
we lie,
“I hate you” we lie.
And between love and hate
We neither live, nor die.

192. Yesri Baba - May 30, 2008

177 JAVOH

Those accounts seem more like ‘decrystallization’ to me.

193. Ellen - May 30, 2008

191 Yesri Baba
177 JAVOH
179. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup

Nice thread. I think if we forget about levels it all gets confusing.
From the Fourth Way, the RoC and ToH all referred to understanding existence as comprised of “things” (the system called them Hydrogens) on different energetic scales. Discrimination was relative to the level of refinedness (word?) in matter, subtlety, vibration of living energy, creativity, ability to give and sustain life, and so on. Moving from coarse to fine to super fine to invisible, to….off the charts!

Under the right conditions, the “decrystallization” of egoic centered elements can allow for the “crystallization” of higher worlds in a living human being. Ramana Maharshi, Meher Baba, Nisargadatta in the last century are some examples of this occurring. Otherwise that “decrystallization” can lead to nervous breakdowns and insanity.

For the Fourth Way, cystallization as a word may have been chosen because of the scientific-chemical mileu of its language? When I think of crystallization, I inevitably think of something finely physical precipitating out of a mixed solution. So from a liquid to a solid. But that may not be the case at all. Yet the language itself may be one reason why so many of us accepted the formatory formulation of creating a personal Higher Self that can withstand the death of the body?

The “fine” hydrogens of the FoF environment were/are a surface phenomenon, concealing the sick dirt behind the curtains and under the rug. Over time, as the dirt became inevitably more visible, new labels were created to explain it all, leading followers into a cul de sac of criminal thinking (lying) which contains some really deadening hydrogens, disguised as truth. Discovering real Truth can lead to liberation, at least from the stultifying knowledge of the teaching of Robert Burton.

What happened to RB? Who knows exactly, but if you begin to smell something rotten, start running.

194. Vinnie the Fish - May 30, 2008

I meant was anyone there, whether it actually happened or is it just exaggerated BS like most such stories? You’d need to be deft as Bruce Lee to flick a flying bee into a candle flame, it’s not something I would think possible from a gangly awkward person.
If someone has any higher consciousness I would expect some trace of it to be visible.

195. Vinnie the Fish - May 30, 2008

‘refinement’, Ellen.

196. Kid Shelleen - May 30, 2008

“If, however, Inner Work continues, one may finally attain the state of being a “Man Number 7″ in which one’s Essential faculties are all permanent, balanced, and fully functional. “Will, consciousness, permanent and unchangeable ‘I’, individuality, immortality, and many other properties, which in our blindness and ignorance, we ascribe to ourselves” now become available. The person’s identity has completely shifted from ego structures to Essence. In short, “Man Number 7″ is the complete human being in all of his or her intended fullness, someone who is now ready and capable of embodying the Will of God. Such a person is perfect in that he or she becomes an expression of God in human form; hence, “Man Number 7″ can be considered the stage of the avatar, or the boddhisattva, or the person who manifests Christ, or “Christ-consciousness”

Is it just me, or does anyone else here think this reads like a sales pitch? Doesn’t this really get down to the nitty-gritty of what everyone on the planet wants? —>I’ve suffered. I’ve destroyed my ego. I’ve spent 40 days and 40 nights in the desert. I’ve refined the impressions I consume and they now contain 85% more higher hydrogens. Sooo — Where are my super powers? Hey God, I’m here, I’m all cleaned out and ready to impose your will on all the sleeping sheep. Speak to me that I may teach them. Let ME be your voice among the ignorant masses. Or I could just sit here in my mud hut all the doo-dah day and contemplate your divinity while receiving visitors who wish to be in my presence just so that they may feel closer to you. Right at last, right at last. Thank God almighty, I’m right at last!

Ernest Angley, L. Ron Hubbard, Jim Baker, G.I. Gurdjieff, Robert Burton, Werner Erhardt, Eckhart Tolle are all selling the same thing to an over-saturated market.

I propose a new concept: Man # 0.
Leave a space inside of yourself where none of these so-called spiritual conundrums fever your thinking. Good. Now go grab a beer and flip on the ballgame. See you on the couch.

And always remember:

Nobody gets in to see the Wizard! Not nobody. Not no how.

197. lauralupa - May 30, 2008

Dear Vinnie,
are you trying to establish if there is any factual proof that Robert is a “conscious being”?

Your concern is a valid one. You are in a group whose leader has made this claim for many years, and constantly uses it as an instrument of persuasion and cohercion upon his followers.
Yet there is precious little evidence that he is even remotely close to what one would call an “enlightened” state of being, however you want to picture it.
Not one single accurate prediction. No miracles, materializations of objects, healing powers, levitations, visible auras, feelings of bliss when you are around him.
No altruistic attitudes, no higher knowledge, no saintly behaviour, no higher love, no sacred sexuality, no perceptive insight, no creative inspiration, no detachment from the senses, no holy compassion, no sacrifice of the self.
No evidence whatsoever.

So maybe the bee story is one of your last shreds of hope. I don’t want to say it’s not true, I wasn’t there when it happened. But I can tell you this: it’s an old story, and it was already old when I first heard it, maybe eighteen years ago. It seems that, even after all these years, that’s all we’ve got.

BTW, I can’t picture Meher Baba or Ramana Maharshi carelessly flicking a bee into a candle flame just to make a joke, can you?
And why would C influence want to destroy B influence?
Can’t you see the idiocy of it all?

198. Vinnie the Fish - May 30, 2008

Don’t bother wildly reading too much into my question Laura, it’s just my idle curiosity. The only other story I’ve heard was about someone feeling tired and looking at Robert and seeing a blue spark flash between him and her, and feeling suddenly full of energy, but I suspect that she read it in a Fritz Peters book (or Kenneth Walker?), like I did, and somehow mixed up the story with her befuddled memory. It is surprising that someone can accrue a mass of devoted followers – who are not all stupid mind you – without having any exceptional ability, merely the rumour or hearsay that he’s ‘conscious’.

199. lauralupa - May 30, 2008

Idle curiosity or not, an important issue is implied in your question.

Yes I agree, what you describe is quite surprising, and yet there you have it. More or less, we all fell for it, even after reading those work books saying “verify everything for yourself”!

Makes me want to study the psychology of man’s possible devolution.

200. brucelevy - May 30, 2008

193. Vinnie the Fish

Vinnie, you haven’t changed much, or taken your head out of the sand. You still refute the “exaggerated” stories. Unbelievable.

They’re not exaggerated, regardless of how much you refuse to accept it. This is YOUR problem, not that of the people giving this information. I would think it would be more important for you to examine why it is you are reluctant to accept something as true when that facts are all over the place, given by people who experienced it themselves. Are you reluctant to accept your own gullibility and lack of discrimination, or that your donations towards the Ark are actually buying KY in bulk?

201. somebody - May 30, 2008

Robert changed all ideas of the System. Verifying the meaning and finding the context of the quotations used at the meetings was for me a helpful way to see the brainwashing.

At the meeting posted here earlier for example, Robert used quite a few names to “prove” his teaching. One example of how he changes the meaning of a quotation is when he commented on Jo-Anna’s angle:

“Most people in life are totally preoccupied with strengthening the physical body. They do everything they can to make it immortal, although, of course, it is not. Gurdjieff said, “Faith in the body is stupidity.”

I found Gurdjieff’s quotation – it has a completely different meaning. He was talking about the subjectivity of the language and how different brains interpret the same word:

“Faith of consciousness is freedom
Faith of feeling is weakness
Faith of body is stupidity.”

202. steve lang - May 30, 2008

While it’s on my mind, I just wanted to throw in my two cents regarding the divisions of man #1-7 (8?)

I always found it curious that the FOF would automatically assign the status of man #4 to anyone who joined. The fellowship does a lot of “wishful thinking”. I never felt I was a man #4 and always considered myself to be an emotional person (man #2) who’s center of gravity was the emotional center. When I really want to, I can see things through the intellectual point of view, but I don’t think I knew anyone that I thought really had “balanced centers”

Also, for shits and giggles, you might re-read the explanation from Ouspensky on page 71-72 in ISOTM. It seems Robert’s first crystallization should of occurred when he supposedly made it to the status of #5 and then he would have to re-crystallize as a #6. Were there 2 crystallizations? (not that it really matters)

There is so much myth that floats around in that silly little country club known as the Fellowship Of Friends.

203. Vinnie the Fish - May 30, 2008

Don’t know what you’re talking about Bruce, you obviously haven’t gained any intelligence in the interim.
If you read my message it says that I (thats me) expect that the stories are BS. So wtf are you on about?? wanker.

204. Opus111 - May 30, 2008

Bruce 199, Vinnie.

Reading your “Are you reluctant to accept your own gullibility and lack of discrimination, or that your donations towards the Ark are actually buying KY in bulk?”, I realized it gives another dimension to the “spring” and “fall” donations concept ($775 each by the way). Another bad joke.

Our friend Vinnie seems ready to dismiss a lot of the stories on the kind of objection that Robert does not own the shoes or the hat the story-tellers tell us he was wearing, for example. Keep your eyes on the ball, Vinnie!

205. brucelevy - May 30, 2008

202. Vinnie the Fish

“f you read my message it says that I (thats me) expect that the stories are BS.”

That’s exactly my point. What don’t you understand?

206. More history needed? - May 30, 2008

This is a second hand story, one of Robert’s boys, who left the fellowship a few years ago.

This gentleman had a lot of trouble having sex with Robert. He asked Robert to not have to have sex with Robert. In this particular conversation Robert told him he did not have to have sex with him anymore. The gentleman very happy answered with gratitude and thanked Robert, saying , thank you, thanks you so much, very relieved. Robert mumbles a sentence and the gentleman asks him what he says. This repeats and the third time the gentleman understands him.

Robert mumbles: “Do you want to come with me to the bedroom?

The gentleman could not believe his ears and his chin dropped.

My question is: Is Robert a spoiled child, wanting his way?
In sex, purchases, games etc?

207. Walter Tanner - May 30, 2008

Re: “crystalization”

Victor Tomberg, in his Meditations on the Tarot (http://www.amazon.com/Meditations-Tarot-Christian-Hermeticism-Editions/dp/1852302224), criticizes (IMO correctly) Gurdjieff’s teachings on crystallization. Tomberg believes Gurdjieff developed (or was taught) an alchemical process for making-permanent one’s Being, but it is nothing more than solidifying subtle bodies, making them much more permanent but less open to change, like ghosts, etc.

Vajrayana Tibetan buddhism, and I believe some Hindu teachings, mention crystal-like awareness, but it seems the allusion is to the clarity of the crystal, not its form or structure.

As in the vajrayana “rainbow body,” Tomberg believes a transformation of the soul or other subtle bodies is only aligned with things like freedom and liberation if its character is more like light.

walter.tanner@gmail.com

208. Another Name - May 30, 2008

Dear friends,

I just listened to this from Gerald O’Donnell

[audio src="http://www.learnremoteviewing.com/project/media/audio/themindpowertoinfluence.mp3" /]

What do you think of this….Mind boggling

209. Yesri Baba - May 30, 2008

197 Vinnie

I had an experience kinda like that woman and the blue spark. I was in the lodge (Apollo de oro or whatever) sitting on a couch and kept nodding off. I was probably exhausted from working in the sun all day and waiting for dinner to be over so I could go to sleep on the dining room floor. I looked up and Robert was glaring at me with disgust like I was poopin’ on his show. He told me to get up and go stand by the fireplace (as if some heat were going to wake me up!).

So that was a similar experience except for the blue spark and energy and stuff.

(Psych, bet you guys got all geared up for some fantastical BS)

210. Yesri Baba - May 30, 2008

195 Kid

Dude, you’re my hero.

211. Just Another Voice Out Here - May 30, 2008

193, 197 Vinnie

Vinnie, I also wasn’t there when the flicking supposedly occurred. I do think RB has more dexterity than his lumbering body seems to suggest. But if it occurred, I wouldn’t assume that it was evidence of any remarkable ability, even purely physical, let alone cosmic. I’ve caught flies many times, and claim no kung fu wizardry (although I sometimes like to imagine it!). I’ve also missed many times–and who knows how many times RB missed before he got lucky in front of an audience? And, as Laura points out, since when does the ability to flick an insect indicate anything of value? I’d pay Tiger Woods to teach me golf, but I wouldn’t pay him to be my spiritual guide.

As for how could a person who’s so ordinary attract so many people, some of whom are fairly bright, I’d say, first, people join before they meet RB. At least when I joined, it was clearly designed that way. Once you’ve paid your money and you’ve made a commitment, you tend to try to justify the wisdom of your expenditure to avoid feeling like a fool. Or you simply see how it goes, and you get taken in by the hype, at least for a time. The vast majority of those who find themselves in this situation eventually leave, despite RB’s threats of spiritual double death and physical immolation through “hydrogen warfare.” Based on the current “teaching,” I’d say there are a certain number of people who seem “normal” and even “intelligent” but will follow someone even if he’s plainly nuts.

Second, many people who join are fairly desperate. They’re unhappy. Many have social and emotional issues. So they’re going to join something to try to deal with their pain. If it were a chess club, they might leave after three months, but the Fellowship is far better than the average chess club at retaining members. They may also be sincerely seeking truth, and were persuaded by In Search of the Miraculous, notwithstanding that even when RB pretended to follow the Fourth Way there was very limited overlap. I don’t know what the scene is now, but the prospective student meetings in my day were as fascinating as three card monty.

And RB isn’t just an ordinary guy. He may not be anything like what he claims to be, but lack of a conscience is a powerful tool for those intent on manipulating people. He’s a gifted con man. In another time, he’d have made a fortune selling Mr. Billy’s Wonder Oil, but in 1970, spiritual cults were the happening thing and he knew a good thing when he saw it. He’s not a real spiritual teacher, but he’s very good at what he does. Which is take your money, harvest sex, and get thanked for it. For a time.

212. Wouldnt You Like To Know - May 30, 2008

161. Another Name – May 29, 2008 said:

‘Did you all notice the hills? The vines are gone. . ., Robert forgot to put a little stack away to honor the hills and keep the vines. SAD.’

Yes, for the most part, the 365 acres of vineyard are gone. (Put to sleep, or dormant, to preserve root stock and/or future wake up.) The winery stands incomplete. Both are relics of a civilization now gone; like an elements beaten sea shell on the sea shore – it only gives a hint of what might have been possible. Future generations will have eyes to wonder but lack tongues to praise. Why has this happened? One possibility:

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord:
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword:
His truth is marching on.

So,

I dream’d in a dream, I saw a city invincible to the attacks of the
whole of the rest of the earth;
I dream’d that was the new City of Friends;
Nothing was greater there than the quality of robust love – it led the
rest;
It was seen every hour in the actions of the men of that city,
And in all their looks and words.

Walt Whitman

Turns out then, that the new city of the Fellowship of Friends was not all that invincible.

213. somebody - May 30, 2008

I had an interesting reading today. I was curious about what happened to our “friend” Michael Travesser and googled his name to find some news. The first link that came out was a website of Prudence, his ex-member, who posted some of his letters to her.

What the film “Inside the Cult” does not show is that Michael has a personal e-mail correspondence with his followers, and he influences and manipulates them in a very similar way Robert Burton does (did) to us.

He has a habbit to call everything “little”
– I thought, “Oh, this poor little lamb, how she hurts, even now.”
– In all of your years here, I just loved your little heart.
– The problem is, however, that little Prudence is still right where she went.
– I have been thankful for your little Web site.
– Well, old friend, I truly understand your little heart.
– Your little quote under your picture says it all

etc….

He also expresses loads of negativity which makes one feel less than a peace of dirt but in a very calm and controlled tone. Just like Robert:

” I once visited a hospital for the insane and they viewed life in much the same way as you do now. Are you okay? Or do you feel like you are losing it? I sure hope that you are not going over the edge. Over the many years I have known you, you did not seem to be so mentally distracted, but I may have been wrong about that. Were you like this before, but I just didn\’t recognize it in you, or have you gone through a change? When you left your husband and went with that man in Wyoming did it unbalance you? Have you had difficulty knowing that your new baby is not with his natural father? Little Prudence, did this move on your part push you over the edge? ”

Or check out this interesting sentence:
“If I had known that you were urged to be converted back in the academy days, I would have discouraged the folks from it.  It was never in me to urge you, or anyone to come and follow me, or to follow God. ” (Follow me = follow the god)

“Marrying God is like marrying fire.  It has been that way for me.”

And this is his comment on the movie we saw:
” It sure has helped our young people see what the world really does to distort things.  Our young people here are naturally honest at heart, and the movie showed them that the world is not honest at heart.  It gave them security to know that they live in a safe and secure environment where the truth is told. ”

This is another manipulation in the attempt to silence a victim: “I know how hard it is to bear the hurting…  I know that no talking can take the pain away.”

And finally – some soap if you are bored:

“Little Prudence, do you remember the \”midst of the week?\” Do you remember how sweet it was when you washed my feet and kissed me. I think that was one of the sweetest times in my life since it was so spontaneous and unplanned. Remember the candles you lit? We still have that candle stick in the church that you gave us and it still has the original candles on it that you lit. I remember you whenever I see those candles, and the little separate eighth one also. I remember what you said on that sweet tearful day. Little Prudence, was that all made up? Did you make it all up? I sure didn\’t think so. I saw that it was God moving on you for love of His Son. What happened little Prudence?”

214. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 30, 2008

In my opinion a spiritual teacher is someone who empowers you to find the truth within yourself, not to tell you what your truth is. There’s plenty of that going around.

215. Elena - May 31, 2008

No, not so dark
Not nearly as dark as that
It was not black
Nor is it black now.
No, is easier than yes,
Because it doesn’t cost anyone anything.
Yes needs somebody’s butt.

Easier to make nightmares of dreams
Than dreams of nightmares.
But who would bother to change that
when you’ve already made up your mind?

Crystals shine but they break under pressure.

216. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - May 31, 2008

191, 204 and 208 are newly moderated.

217. ton - May 31, 2008

vinnie 197 you write:
“It is surprising that someone can accrue a mass of devoted followers – who are not all stupid mind you – without having any exceptional ability, merely the rumour or hearsay that he’s ‘conscious’.”

You seem to be implying that attracting followers is proof of ‘conciousness’ ? what’s that famous quote by p.t. barnum? Just in case you missed what Paul wrote around 115, it seems to pertain and it’s worth reviewing anyway:

“RB is a very powerful sociopath, but I highly doubt that those that are abused by him would find themselves in his grip without the help and pressure of others. Most of those stoking the fires are doing so unwittingly. Think back to your first introduction to the IDEA of Robert the Teacher. You probably did not know him, you heard about him. You heard stories told to others bolster the notion that he was a conscious being. Did you join the FOF knowing RB was a sexual predator? The setup for the con is at the margins…”

JAVOH 208 writes: “before they meet RB. At least when I joined, it was clearly designed that way. Once you’ve paid your money and you’ve made a commitment, you tend to try to justify the wisdom of your expenditure to avoid feeling like a fool. Or you simply see how it goes, and you get taken in by the hype, at east for a time.”

vinnie, 183 & 184 “Does anyone know what’s behind the story about a bee or wasp flying around a meal and Robert flicking it into a candle and saying ‘thats how C influence handles B influence’?”

i’ll tell you what’s behind it… i can smell it through the computer monitor… IT’S A STEAMING PILE OF BULLSHIT!
you can continue to swim around the margins serving as an enabler, but i’ll ask you this: if you are ‘hypnotized’ do you have freedom of choice? one can rationalize anything, i hope you are beginning to realize it.

steve 201
“There is so much myth that floats around in that silly little country club known as the Fellowship Of Friends.”

I get your point and i don’t mean to quibble over semantics but the word “myth” is putting it too kindly. in it’s place i would use the stronger and more descriptive term “BULLSHIT!”

218. veronicapoe - May 31, 2008

Great Village Voice article written around interview with high-level celebrity Scientology defector Jason Beghe:

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/0815,celebrity%20denoun,411801,2.html/full

“Scientology seduces you into thinking that it’s a process through which you can truly become yourself. But ultimately, what it turns you into is a Scientologist—a brainwashed version of yourself.”

219. Another Name - May 31, 2008

TON: Think back to your first introduction to the IDEA of Robert the Teacher. You probably did not know him, you heard about him. You heard stories told to others bolster the notion that he was a conscious being. Did you join the FOF knowing RB was a sexual predator? The setup for the con is at the margins…”

I wish I had only heard that on his birthday he wanted to have sex with more then 50 boys. If people would have told me that I would have run away and never joined.

The issue for me is that I though I was joining a School and it appears to be a cult. Yes I still wonder how blind I was to not have been able to see it earlier.

220. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 31, 2008

#208 Another Name: I actually have spent time with Gerald O’Donnell and have done his work extensively with many positive results. If you or anyone else want more information on this please contact me.

221. steve lang - May 31, 2008

wakeuplittlesuzywakeup-
I am interested in finding out more about Gerald O’Donnell. How do I contact you?

222. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - May 31, 2008

Go to GF website and I have a phone number. You can call me. I have taken the course with Gerald and know him personally. After taking the course I was so excited about the results I phoned him and asked to have dinner with him. He immediately said yes so I few down to Florida and spent some time with him. Anyone interested in more please call me. My life was transformed in taking this course.

223. WhaleRider - May 31, 2008

another name:

RE: Gerald O’Donnell

Remote influencing of others? Television would be the best example of influencing the consensual reality of entire populations of people, all viewing TV in various states of trance.

Remote viewing to win the lottery?

He says you remote view what you remote influence…you don’t remote view the random numbers being drawn in the lottery at a given time…you must believe in your ability to remotely influence the actual selection of the numbers. (IMO, Magical Thinking 101)

‘Silva’ says you cannot win the lottery because too many people are trying to do the same and therefore your individual effect is diluted to the point of ineffectiveness…(which is why maybe you only get one or two of the numbers…and someone else only gets one or two of their numbers or none at all….Hmmm…well, you can’t win if you don’t play.)

O’Donnell is talking about quieting the mind to the point of “theta state” or deep, meditative trance to be able to access the higher mind which has the ability to change your universe. (Gee…and not looking at a statue of David baring his genitals or listening to a crackpot supposedly talk from his higher mind about yak poop on a cave wall?)

O’Donnell is a Hypnotherapist…he says he teaches students using techniques in a ‘couple of sessions’ to let go of fear and, in a deep ‘theta’ state much less subject to the critical conscious mind, they can learn to empower themselves to manifest their own reality. He says to choose a different probable future, in that state you choose (make no mistake you still have to have enough ego or will to make the choice to change) to view another probable reality instead of the current one. And then you energize (emotionalize) that other probable reality. Then you get to witness it. That’s remote influencing. (I like this definition much better….remotely viewing inside oneself a different reality from a deep theta state and then letting that new reality remotely influence you from deep within.)

He’s also selling the ability to generate an aura of light around yourself from being connected to you own inner light and he claims that gives you charisma. (Who could argue with that?)

The 10 CD home study course for remote viewing runs you $177 or the advanced remote influencing 14 CD set is $277…but you can have the two for $397.

Personally I would recommend learning the techniques from a real live person instead of a recorded one.

What do you think wakeuplittlesuzy? Tell us more.

224. brucelevy - May 31, 2008

223. WhaleRider

Interesting. The remote viewing I played with in the early 80’s was more centered around what was being done by Hal Puthoff and Keith Harrari at SRI (Stanford Research Institute). Their original story was that they financed their department partially with silver commodities market using remote viewing. It turned out that they were partially funded by the CIA, but that didn’t come out until much later. I was able to spend some time with Puthoff in Austin where he was then (85-88) the head of the Institute for Advanced Studies. He moved away from remote viewing to zero point energy and the possibility of warp drives.
But back to the point…at SRI their experiments were primarily (that the public knows about) with senders, receivers and facilitators. They had a small handful of VERY successful receivers (an artist, and ex cop etc). Senders were more easily trained because it appeared that they weren’t really doing the sending. They were more like targets for the receivers. The sender would go to a target site and the receiver would draw what they saw. A photograph of the target was later compared to the drawings. Some of them were mind boggling and very complex as well as dead on.
Ultimately one of their conclusions was that many people could become receivers. The problem was differentiating between actual “information” and “noise”. The good receivers had an innate ability to filter the “noise” from the “messages”, Their approach sounds like a different direction from the O’Donnell sampled above. It sound like he created a mini cult from this genre.

225. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 1, 2008

#223 Whalerider: If you go to his website, which I guess you have, you will find lots of material. In fact, contrary to meeting Gerald, the website was a big turnoff for me. However, I was attracted to the work so I ordered the tapes.

It was the first time I experienced in a very profound way the connectedness to nature and spirit which stays with me to this day. It helps if you have had had some psychic experiences, and are open to new ones because for some it may be a little scary until you get used to it. For me it has been life changing and empowering because although Gerald is part of the training in that you are hearing his voice, he teaches you how to do the work on your own.

When I had dinner with him he seemed quite genuine. Through his work he also has been active in trying to resolve Middle Eastern conflicts, in particular with Israel and Palestine. It is on his website. A great individual really. Well worth the money, which was minimal.

226. WhaleRider - June 1, 2008

wakeuplittlesuzy, thanks for your personal account. When you have the time, do you mind telling us the details of how your life was changed using these techniques? (As long as it doesn’t compromise your identity or invade your privacy.) I imagine you had these profound experiences without the need for psychoactive substances, yes?…including the connection with nature and spirit that sticks with you to this today? That’s really wonderful. Good work! Sounds like O’Donnell is more or less on a healthy track. when he says..(as long as he isn’t claiming that he possesses animal magnetism or something like that) each of us must look deep within ourselves for the connection to higher mind, the answers, and strength to empower ourselves. You apparently don’t have to be his perpetual “student’ meal ticket either. That’s a good deal.

(Actually, I only just listened to the O’Donnell interview, which was interesting, but haven’t been to the website. Hopefully, in addition to the rest of us, one day the Palestinians and Israelis will both begin to visualize peace for themselves as a resolution to their conflict…maybe their conflict is dragging on because it’s like too many people attempting to remotely influence the lottery one way or the other and thus diluting the overall effect.)

How about that idea that the higher mind is accessed in a deep, meditative trance state without the need to be in the hyper-vigilant state of ‘self-remembering’ or endlessly repeating the silly ‘30 commands’ like a robot? I think that’s pretty cool, too, don’t you?

The FOF is fueled by one man’s egotistical interpretation of his own subjective synchronicity and profits from making it the institutional, consensual reality for his followers, and if they don’t toe the line, they get the boot. Maybe Robert’s predictions didn’t come true because not enough of his followers shared his destructive cataclysmic vision as the consensual reality for the rest of us poor moon morsels…(Ah, thanks, not-so faithful followers!)

Thanks Bruce. You’ve had some remarkable experiences, as well. What a great cover story for the CIA, the SRI study being funded by ‘inside’ trading in commodities by remote viewers…a real urban myth.

O’Donnell seems to suggest that remote viewing is the active process of remote influencing as well. You view what you influence, he says. Or in actuality do you influence what you view? I guess it’s really a chicken-egg kind of deal when you think about it. Anyway, I like how he applies remote viewing to personal self-development. BTW, I have never heard of any millionaires who claim to have made all their money through remote viewing only, have you?

Somebody:
A cult is a cult. Imagine the pain that Michael Travesser’s son feels when he realizes that his father, who had sex with his newly married wife several times before he consummated his marriage, isn’t the second coming of Christ, either? The avoidance of that pain would make him an ardent, faithful follower, too, don’t you think, just like guess who…

227. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - June 1, 2008

Gerald O’Donnell –
Academy of Remote Viewing through Space and Time

Gerald O’Donnel sells a home RV training course consisting of six audio cassettes which appears to teach meditation rather than structured remote viewing. He claims to have a secret spy/intelligence agency background from a “Western” government (won’t name names, of course.)

Despite the relative lack of depth on his remote viewing training course, and his obvious unwillingness to share any of his credentials as a remote viewer or remote viewing teacher whatsoever, O’Donnell seems to continue to enjoy a relatively steady interest in his product.

His main sales vehicle, his website, appears to be a very slick piece of marketing. Encased in double talk and carefully placed quotes, he appears to offer a substantial course at a substantial discount. Closer examination however, reveals that his accounts and stories are full of holes and wordplay, and that his course can hardly be expected to teach one remote viewing in any meaningful way. O’Donnel’s visualization and self-affirmation techniques bear little to no resemblance whatsoever to established military remote viewing protocols.

In fact, on his site O’Donnell claims that one of his associates by the name of “Jason,” directly talked with an entity called “The One” in some sort of remote viewing session back in October of 1989. In 1989, the original military remote viewing project was still operating as a classified, active unit. It seems highly unlikely that at this time either O’Donnell or “Jason” would have been privy to either classified U.S. Army remote viewing protocols, or that another “unnamed Western European country” in which O’Donnell was serving would have been developing its own remote viewing training. In addition, it seems unlikely that someone with such intimate access to the government of a highly-developed Western European country would reside in the state of Florida. It also appears odd that he discusses the U.S. Army’s publicly available results and experiments in such detail, while completely avoiding any detail whatsoever of his own “European experiences.” He claims to be an instructor for that group, but offers none of his own anecdotal insights on how he stumbled across such a mental breakthrough.

Which is the more uncomfortable realization, that O’Donnell is fabricating his remote viewing background and/or techniques, or that he genuinely believes he has special abilities and has been regularly communicating with unseen, unidentified beings solely through his mind, I leave up to the reader to decide.

Most importanly however remains the issue of his training cassettes. From several sources we have heard of negative results gained from O’Donnell’s tapes, and not one positive report. This meshes cleanly with reports from other areas of the remote viewing phenomenon. Lyn Buchanan, a bona-fide member of the original U.S. Army remote viewing unit, had this to say regarding Gerald O’Donnell:

From: Lyn Buchanan
Date: Sat Jan 1, 2000 3:35am
Subject: [stargate] Re: who are these guys???

Back about 4 years ago, I got a message from Mr. Gerald O’Donnell which asked me to put a link to his page on mine and told me that he was in the military unit with me, and that he took part in all our activities, and something to the effect that his job was so secret that even the people in the unit didn’t know he was one of us, etc. etc. etc. I investigated his claims and then wrote him back and told him that I knew they were untrue, and that I would not put a link to his page on mine.

I had just been offered a goodly sum of money by another person to say that he was in our unit, to give him credibility, so he could start charging people for training tapes. I had been surprised that there were people out there so ready to bilk the public, and when the message came in from O’Donnell, I warned him that if he went around telling everyone that he was a member of our unit, just so he could sell things, I would expose him.

He wrote back, saying that he was actually a member of another country’s unit, and castigated me for not knowing that there were other countries in the world. Everything he said in this message contradicted what he had originally claimed in the previous message about his participation in the US unit.

About 6 months after that, someone wrote to me asking about him, saying that he was selling audio tapes for $89 which would teach you everything there was to know about remote viewing in the span of 6 hours or so. They wanted to know what I knew of him and his tapes. I took a look at O’Donnell’s page and found it to be very misleading. While it did say that he was a member of another country’s unit, the wording was crafted in such a way, that you almost had to be an English major to not come away with the belief that he was in the US unit. Anyway, I felt that O’Donnell had crossed the line, and so I copied the question and my answer onto my web site. In my answer, I basically said that I felt that O’Donnell had not be in the US unit, and that his page was misleading, and that the reader should be cautious. As for the tapes, I hadn’t heard them, so couldn’t comment. I have left that Q&A page on my server, but I long ago deleted it from the web site menu – so it can’t be reached in the normal manner. If you want to look at it, the file is at: http://www.crviewer.com/pj-crv-site-pages/gerald.html

About a month later, I got another message from O’Donnell, threatening to sue me in court, and that if I didn’t take the Q&A page off, he would ruin my name. I put a copy of his message and my response onto my web site (and have long since taken it off my site for lack of interest.) He responded by putting a huge and very slanderous tyrade about me on his web site (it’s still there, if you want to see it), and I got a few more private messages from him threatening legal action, etc. There was even one in which I was CC’d on a message he wrote to someone else, saying that I was a fraud, liar and cheat, etc.

In other words, when caught in a lie, he countered with sound and fury.

I have had several of my incoming students tell me that they had bought his tapes. So far, none of them have given him or the tapes decent reviews. That is all I know about the tapes – still haven’t heard them, and so can’t really give a valid critique.

From: http://www.remoteviewer.org/remoteviewing/odonnel.htm

228. brucelevy - June 1, 2008

227. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion

Yeah, that’s the feeling I got. Thanks Sheik.

Today’s gurus…drugs, sex and rock and roll,… without the rock and roll.

229. Elena - June 1, 2008

198 Vinnie. It is surprising that someone can accrue a mass of devoted followers – who are not all stupid mind you – without having any exceptional ability, merely the rumour or hearsay that he’s ‘conscious’.

You seem to have moved on and I think your position is valid although the question has been addressed so many times that it is hard to find enough energy to address it again but here we go, hopefully with better understanding.

Like you imply, I believe Robert was not simply a con man from the beginning. What surprises me is that he found a way of being extremely consistent in one side of himself and one side of the Fellowship and become extremely corrupted in the other side, finally achieving to corrupt everything. What I am interested in understanding is how this happened to both him and the rest of us.

One possibility is that the pressure of having to make money to support others that supported him moved the octave into a realm of instinctive needs and those involved started overriding the inconsistencies that came with it.

There was obviously a struggle with his homosexuality. Not wanting to recognize how homosexual he was, hiding it, then practicing it like the sociopath that he has become, running six or more men down his pants as often as possible without the slightest emotional connection. Objects on which not expressing love is taken as not being identified and from whom no claim is expected or the label of being “identified” is quickly stamped on them and led out of the entourage.

It is interesting that somehow Fellowship followers and dogma swallowed the idea that not being identified means “dis-acknowledging”: “we don’t look, therefore we don’t see therefore we are not identified” is a surprising equation for people who profess sufficiency as mathematical analysts! Robert ignores everyone in actual practice and everyone ignores Robert’s practices so they all get to live in the half of themselves that is convenient to the apparently inoffensive club.

What is astounding is that in practical behaviour there is apparently little difference between not being identified and dis-acknowledging the world outside. In the act of dis-acknowledging it, neither people nor the things that happen to them are given importance. Since they are not important, rape can happen without it being incorporated into the realm of conscience of the participants. People and experiences don’t matter and the energy of this realm is transposed and buffered by the realm of objects and fixed behaviour under the justification that everything must be “intentional.” Alchemy or the overstated concern for beauty in the externals, replaces the inner frigidity of having to dis-acknowledge people and experiences from the map of what conscious living is.

The idea that many were “hurt” when they joined, that many had enough problems with their family, friends and society at large, lends itself easily to the subsequent behaviour that allows for the dismantling of student’s emotional connections with their family, friends and life in greater or lesser extent. The slow removal of these “emotional connections” which actually pertain to the realm of essence in their being, brings a gradual deadening of their inner life, a gradual frigidity, not only in their emotional life, but in the whole sphere of their being including their sexuality or life force which stays “mobile” or “alive” by being consistently nourished in the practice of love or a healthy connection between people.

In the Fellowship, love for people, for “life” or for one’s self is replaced by love for Robert, the Conscious divine being and love for an imaginary ideal of humanity needing to be saved from sleep and decadence which develops into a weird over-dressing of not only the people but the landscape. The nature of the California foothills becomes the symbol of the life that cannot be allowed and de-forming it into overly-accentuated gardens without the “natural” becomes as psychotic as the attitude towards the Oregon House locals and their alchemy who are conveniently made to represent the sleeping six billion dead people on the planet. “Psychotic” not because they are not beautiful but because like so many other gardens made at the expense of others, students spend their time planting them to keep busy and avoid looking at what is actually happening around them.

The sense of themselves is transported out of themselves into the imaginary picture of students of a Conscious School, and it must be conscious because “look at the tremendous amount of work that has been invested here”. The sense of I, John, Richard, Mary, becomes the sense of “Students who “sacrificed” themselves and did something of value for humanity: gardens, dinners, music, theatre, and the non expression of negative emotions even when the young people are serially raped by the Teacher; Even if the gardens would not survive a day without chemicals; the dinners, a second without the degrading hierarchic order in which they are misplaced, the music and the Theatre, a music and a Theatre that had to look better than Music and Theatre to boast the tremendous general depression. Everything is exaggerated convinced that the exaggeration will cover sufficiently the sad reality behind it.

It is fascinating that the Fellowship of Friend’s Cult behaves no differently to individuals and like them, no matter how much damage it may be suffering from its pathologies, it cannot free itself without help. Since it is, like most individuals, unwilling to look for help, considering itself, “self sufficient”, it will probably succumb to not getting any until the cancer is widely spread. A cancer is life that has turned against itself: Everything is there: the sex energy and the functions but instead of healing, the process of crime goes rampant. The body reveals the soul’s reality without judgement or opposition. Facts are facts and how they are interpreted reveals the level of understanding of the interpreter. When facts no longer matter, people have lost all contact with their common sense.

230. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 1, 2008

#220 down: If you go to the website, there are plenty of testimonials of people who have had success with his methods, including me. Anyone really interested on finding out more can go to his website or call me, Sally Black, phone number on the Greater Fellowship.

I stand by what I said previously. I found the tapes to give me more clarity and tools for understanding, helped me feel more empathy towards my fellow man and all life’s creatures and improved my ability to intuit. I found myself with a great more interest with the world in general after being pretty detached in the Fellowship. In many ways it helped me feel more love for mankind and my feeling of ‘we are all one’ greatly enhanced along with my ability to quiet my mind. In other words I received what I paid for and more and do not feel any way that I was deceived.

231. Elena - June 1, 2008

It is not surprising that O’donnel helped Sally or anybody else just as it is not surprising that Robert helped some people with some issues for some time. In both cases, the situation of the person involved has a great deal to do with the help they claim. Making efforts in an area should help one even if the helper is corrupt. It’s when one’s whole life becomes involved with the corrupt person that one should be terrified of the help one is getting.

232. brucelevy - June 1, 2008

231. Elena

That’s true. I think it says a lot more for Sally than than it does for O’Donnell. It’s an important place in one’s life when one can glean what we need from whatever sources present themselves, and leave the dreck and fluff behind with the “vehicle” where it belongs.

233. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 1, 2008

#232: Thanks for the support Bruce. I totally agree. I’ve never been one to take things at face value and if something calls to me I usually check it out. Sometimes it ain’t so great and other times I’m pleasantly surprised.

234. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - June 1, 2008

Bruce: I have always wondered about the existence of real teachers and real teachings, with people I was always disappointed when the humanity started showing itself around the edges, the little weaknesses and faults that everyone (I have ever met) carries with them, some better hidden than others. With teachings, there is always something being omitted (ie. Western psychology centering on reprogramming the self, taking ego for granted, versus Eastern psychology that looks beyond the ego and forgets about all that conditioned baggage that later hits the enlightened guru in the face when temptation starts showing its ugly horns).

And in actual real-life practice, what’s even more astounding is that all these cults and ‘faulty’ teachers do produce results. They teach self-control, techniques to enter alternate states of consciousness, they create change. If you look at the core teachings of a lot of the more famous cults (take Christianity for starters, uncle Jesus was preaching a very different message to the very condescending ‘no condoms’ and ‘death to science’ of modern-day mainstream Christianity) you can find a lot of meaningful information and some definite useful techniques. When the whole commotion was going on between Scientology and Anonymous, I watched a couple of interviews with former leading Scientologists and a lot of things clicked in place for me, because the exercises that were being explained in the interview provided the users with an equal mix of genuine power and self-strengthening as well as self-corruption. A beautiful example was an exercise in assertiveness, which developed the voice and self-assuredness of the participant, while implanting a belief in his/her head that the new-found power was coming from Scientology, not from the user him/herself. So at the end of it there was a much more powerful person who was also much more indebted and entrenched in Scientology because it was proven to him that the system WORKS. FoF providing its students with higher states is another beautiful example of how a cult can provide a faulty explanation for a genuine spiritual (or whatever you want to call it) technique.

But then, as Bruce rightly pointed out, it depends on the user rather than the source. At work I have a friend who spent almost ten years studying underneath one of Osho’s students and the effect this has had on my friend is undoubtable, in some ways, he does resemble a Jedi knight (which he never fails to point out), while in others, he is more fucked up than the rest of us.

235. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 2, 2008

#232: When I was having dinner with Mr. O’Donnell I asked him who had impacted him the most in his life. He told me Walter Russell. I had never heard of Walter Russell so I googled him and was quite surprised to find lots of information on him. Check it out sometime.

236. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 2, 2008

http://www.walter-russell.org/en/Gemaelde.php

Better yet here’s a link to some of Walter Russell’s scientific art work. I really like it.

237. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 2, 2008

http://www.walter-russell.org/en/Diagramme.php

A man of many talents here are some scientific diagrams too.

238. brucelevy - June 2, 2008

234. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion

“With teachings, there is always something being omitted…”

Perhaps the part that’s always omitted is the part that one has to feed and evoke in and of themselves. Maybe that part includes taking what one specifically needs at a point in time and moving on. In that case, on a personal level it doesn’t matter which clown shows up with some new tools. They’re clowns for sure (self corrupted ones), but they may have something useful. Of course it’s YOU that makes it useful. The part that’s missing, the catalyst is one’s self. Maybe that’s why the cult/group/school can’t give it. One has to take it, and metaphorically laugh off the clown who provided it. It’s a gift that surely didn’t come from the “vehicle”, they’re just the vehicle. But then they build and believe their own myth. Those who can’t are at least temporarily stuck in a rut.

239. brucelevy - June 2, 2008

correction to “Those who can’t are at least temporarily stuck in a rut.”

I meant those who can’t receive without making a God of the present clown, and can’t presently continue their journey, are in a temporary rut. They’re once again mistaking a map (not “THE” map, of which I don’t think there is one) for the journey, or even worse, the destination.

240. brucelevy - June 2, 2008

241. a former student - June 2, 2008

I have not been following the blog. I just checked in and saw this. I recall mentioning that I had experienced Greg doping this literally for over 5 years. He rejoined the Stillpoint group over and over and was banned by the original moderator. When I took over I tried again to let him in and had to ban him. Hopefully someone learned something.

With all the varied descriptions of the criminal activities of Robert Burton I would hope that there are those that can begin to see what is meant by the process of crime. In crime the part is bad for the whole. It is disease, corruption.

I also hope that by now the whiners are getting done and getting ready to move on.

It is important to look at both the positive and negative aspects of ones experience in the Fellowship of Friends. This is one area in which we have some lattitude and will. It is stupid to worry whether the “School” was or was not the “conscious school on Earth. ” Just as it was stupid to believe it while a member. I really don’t care that much I hardly check in or think about the blog and when I do check out what’s happening it is not inspiring. Perhaps I’ll make an effort to catch up who know’s.

86. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion – May 26, 2008
68, 72 and 73 are newly moderated.

Vena: Your post appeared late, it wasn’t deleted. Offensive material (and I do not claim that your post was offensive, it wasn’t to me) is not deleted, I have censored people’s names in the past (that’s rule number one) and banned Greg but that’s as far as any of my serious and brutal attempts at a dictatorship went.

I keep posts in the moderation queue for a longer time because of Greg, as he is still trying to creep back and it’s hard detective work to keep him out. So I am sorry for posts appearing late or not at all, send me an e-mail if you are having trouble and we can sort something out.

242. Elena - June 2, 2008

Sheik, Bruce,

One of the problems is that, at least in the Fellowship, people are trained to provide most of the energy. As the Sheik implies, the more people work, the more results they get and the more entrenched and indebted they become to the Cult. The problem in the Fellowship is that no matter how much flickering goes on when people stand for an hour during a hot summer meeting, even if people got a higher understanding, they would not be able to share it because Robert doesn’t want conscious beings competing with him but stupidified people worshipping him. If anyone ever got any other understanding that did not worship Robert as the divine source of it, s/he might as well not express it because it doesn’t count, so to be able to participate, when people were still allowed to talk, you’d get these tremendous confessions about how difficult it was to be present for even one minute and how inadequate we all were. It was so denigrating but people participated so enthusiastically in this self flagellation in Girard’s meetings which was the only place that we could talk within the Cult. Then we’d give Girard a chance to reduce the flagellation and show his mummy act of being the compassionate and understanding one, helping us understand Robert, our hopelessness and “continue because you must.”

While I agree with the essential idea that individuals must assume responsibility for having participated in such cults and whatever karma that brought one, it is like saying that children are responsible for their parent’s addictions. Karmically one might be able to assume responsibility for the things that happen to one but that doesn’t necessarily mean that one was wholly responsible for what happened to one. What happens to individuals is not solely dependent on the individual and as long as we are unable to connect our selves with the rest, then we will neither understand the personal phenomenon, nor the social one and their interconnectedness. Life is not what happened to me. It is what happened to us and most of what happened to us, was essentially conditioned by greater influences from our Time. That an individual may walk out the back door and shoot himself or the front door and shoot ten other people is not only dependent on the individual but on what happened inside. This lack of connectedness and understanding is what leads the individual to go out the back door and shoot himself convinced he is solely responsible for his condition, instead of understanding that the individual’s suffering is not just his own and that the things that happened to one, were the things that those before one, could not avoid letting them happen to one. They could not help it. Judging them, hating them or killing for it, certainly does not help the problem but judging one’s self, hating or killing one’s self for it or even, simply bearing without ever understanding the second and third circles surrounding one’s life, does not help either. The strong tendency that Western Culture has developed of placing the whole responsibility on the individual, will not help it solve the tremendous abuses on all levels and America will not find shelter anywhere nor any individual. We all assume responsibility for each other, or we all allow tremendous abuses on any one of us at any point in time, as we are doing for as long as Cults like the Fellowship and a myriad other institutions in all levels, continue to function nationally and internationally.

A strong political and ethical society would not allow the level of corruption that Cults are indulging in and too strong a political and ethical society would not allow the individual to develop. This dilemma sounds similar to the idea that in the divine hierarchy of beings, the angels were divine but could only be divine “mechanically” so to speak and man was developed to give us, fallen Angels, the possibility of becoming like Gods. (Seems to connect with Adam and Eve too) Becoming like Gods, meant that at every opportunity man had the freedom to choose between right or wrong because they ate from the tree of knowledge.

As individuals of our time, we don’t seem to want strong political or religious societies dictating every possible move the individual can do, but then, for how long are we going to put up with individuals that are still using the economic, political and religious structures to subdue other people? The individual wants freedom, but where is freedom when it is at the cost of others? Are we, as human beings, a lot more different to teenagers in this period of time? Are we like youngsters who suddenly came of age and felt old enough to play at being Gods in cults? Higher states for what?

So individualistic and selfish that we don’t know what the hell happened to our children, thank god they at least got fed, but in the madness of cities, where did we loose the train? Just asking.

It would be interesting to take a look at Kingdoms in old ages. Could the level of misery that we have today compare in any way to the quality of life in say, Egypt?
They were kingdoms but culture mattered. People mattered. Life mattered. Today we are democracies, individuals, but where did culture, life and people go?

243. Allan S - June 2, 2008

Laura (199), you make a good point here. IMO it is amazing how difficult it actually is to “verify something for yourself”. For me, I want it on a plate. It is as if my mind wants to be satisfied and as soon as it is, as they say in Project Management speak, it’s a tick in the box! As soon as my mind has worked out some idea that is presented, I’m happy and I don’t need to verify anything, everything stops, I don’t need to make any effort to see for myself, cause my mind has it all worked out.

Here in lies the problem and one of the subtle clues (not that any are needed) to why RB is not a conscious teacher and the Fellowship is not a conscious school. Robert, or for that matter any older student, never once asked me “Where does that feeling coming from?” he often told me what it was (Jack of hearts or whatever) but never guided me to look inside myself. For me the question is which of these approaches is more likely to help me confront myself so that I can verify something and which is more likely to pacify me and stop me from looking? One is the question of a teacher who wishes to guide, the other a teacher who wishes to instruct; two different methods leading in two different directions. There was never a lack of students in the Fellowship with Teacher Features, myself included!

Allan.

244. Another Name - June 2, 2008

Dear friends

Thanks all of you who are shedding light on the info on Mr O ‘Donnell and his techniques. Very much appreciated.

Bruce how did you learn to write so concise and say so much, so clear?

245. Kid Shelleen - June 2, 2008

Here’s a memory:

I once was severally reprimanded by our center director because I had lead a perspective student meeting and had delivered the lines, “Man is a machine,” with a smile on my face. I was told I should only be spreading that message with a stern face and forceful body language (illustrated by karate-like air chopping with hands).

More later.

246. Kid Shelleen - June 2, 2008

Pardon my spelling in the last post:

severally = severely
lead = led
perspective = prospective

247. FOF myths, lies, etc. - June 2, 2008

The myth: The FOF encourages verification.
The truth: The FOF encourages blind faith.

The myth: The FOF started as a noble idea, but it later descended into madness.
The truth: The FOF began with madness, and it may be descending into greater madness.

The myth: Stern faces are cool.
The truth: Stern faces are pretentious.

248. Joe Average - June 2, 2008

No Kid 245, just change it to “severedly”, as in “cut your head off for not following the act” otherwise it it right – lead as in lead box so no light can get in/lead lined casket so the possible new dream customers would have only one “perspective”

249. elena - June 3, 2008

A big hug and a kiss to Nigel and Arthur where ever you happen to be and to all those silent readers who think. A big vow of respect to those who write and fight and make this a mirror of light.

250. WhaleRider - June 3, 2008

wakeuplittlesuzywakeup:
Thanks for your posts. What are the chances you could elaborate more about the techniques which worked for you that you learned from O’Donnell? I mean, he doesn’t hold the patent on exploring the human soul, does he? We are just ‘file sharing’. So, how’d you do it? I’d for one, be interested to know. What did you glean? We’re all adults here, right? We promise we will only practice the techniques at home.

And what do you think about that idea of accessing your higher mind in the deep, meditative, ‘theta’ state? That’s a trip, isn’ it?

I mean, if you think about it, who needs a lot of fancy smancy art around to look at if you have to close your eyes and sit still to accomplish that?…just some pillows, peace, and quiet would do…or who needs to pay a guru leech to have to keep showing you the truth, for that matter, when with the right intention you can find it within?

251. lauralupa - June 3, 2008

Sheik 234, thanks for your insightful contribution on gurus and techniques.

Elena 241, while I am not sure that “people mattered” in ancient kingdoms, I do agree that humankind has come to a point where either we take a giant leap evolutionary leap, or we are screwed. Our old survival mechanisms and habitual paradigms are rapidly becoming obsolete, and IMO referring to ancient history for certified truths and solutions is one of the ingrained habits that we have to learn to let go of. As this video suggests, the world and our perception of it has changed so much that the real challenge is reinventing the sacred in the context of our incredibly complex present.
The strident combination of technical and scientific advances and archaic approaches to problem solving is tearing each one of us and the world apart.
If humans could only stop saying “this is what I believe and this is the only way to be because my Sacred Book says so”, and instead open up to the idea that maybe the whole truth and final answer hasn’t been written yet, and that we are all equally responsible cocreators and caretakers of this precious and amazing evolving planet…

http://reinventingthesacred.ning.com/video/video/show?id=1986926:Video:33

252. lauralupa - June 3, 2008

This info may have been posted already, but just in case…

Common Properties of Potentially Destructive and Dangerous Cults

The cult is authoritarian in its power structure. The leader is regarded as the supreme authority. He or she may delegate certain power to a few subordinates for the purpose of seeing that members adhere to the leader’s wishes and roles. There is no appeal outside of his or her system to greater systems of justice. For example, if a school teacher feels unjustly treated by a principal, appeals can be made. In a cult, the leader claims to have the only and final ruling on all matters.

The cult’s leaders tend to be charismatic, determined, and
domineering. They persuade followers to drop their families, jobs, careers, and friends to follow them. They (not the individual) then take over control of their followers’ possessions, money, lives.

The cult’s leaders are self-appointed, messianic persons who claim to have a special mission in life. For example, the flying saucer cult leaders claim that people from outer space have commissioned them to lead people to special places to await a space ship.

The cult’s leaders center the veneration of members upon themselves. Priests, rabbis, ministers, democratic leaders, and leaders of genuinely altruistic movements keep the veneration of adherents focused on God, abstract principles, and group purposes. Cult leaders, in contrast, keep the focus of love, devotion, and allegiance on themselves.

The cult tends to be totalitarian in its control of the behavior of its members. Cults are likely to dictate in great detail what members wear, eat, when and where they work, sleep, and bathe-as well as what to believe, think, and say.

The cult tends to have a double set of ethics. Members are urged to be open and honest within the group, and confess all to the leaders. On the other hand, they are encouraged to deceive and manipulate outsiders or nonmembers. Established religions teach members to be honest and truthful to all, and to abide by one set of ethics.

The cult has basically only two purposes, recruiting new members and fund-raising. Established religions and altruistic movements may also recruit and raise funds. However, their sole purpose is not to grow larger; such groups have the goals to better the lives of their members and mankind in general. The cults may claim to make social contributions, but in actuality these remain mere claims, or gestures. Their focus is always dominated by recruiting new members and fund-raising.

The cult appears to be innovative and exclusive. The leader claims to be breaking with tradition, offering something novel, and instituting the only viable system for change that will solve life’s problems or the world’s ills. While claiming this, the cult then surreptitiously uses systems of psychological coercion on its members to inhibit their ability to examine the actual validity of the claims of the leader and the cult.

From:
http://www.factnet.org/rancho5.htm

253. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - June 3, 2008

241, 247 and 250 are newly moderated.

254. FOF myths, lies, etc. - June 3, 2008

The myth: The FOF is a “cult for intellectuals.”
The truth: It’s probably more accurate to say, “The FOF is a cult for people who pretend to be intellectuals.” A sound intellect requires honest study, openness to new ideas, critical thinking, a healthy skepticism, an aversion for dogma, a willingness to embrace science, and an ability to recognize wisdom and understanding in others.

The myth: The FOF holds a copyright on the music of Vivaldi, so former members of this cult cannot enjoy it. 😉
The truth: Anyone can enjoy Vivaldi. His music has been played for about 300 years, long before the FOF, and people from around the world continue to listen to it in large numbers.

The myth: The FOF holds a copyright on the music of Bach, and only paying members can enjoy it.
The truth: Anyone can enjoy Bach. His music has been played for about 300 years, long before the FOF, and people from around the world continue to listen to it in large numbers.

etc.

255. FOF myths, lies, etc. - June 3, 2008

The myth: In the FOF, you gain knowledge.
The truth: In the FOF, you are taught questionable theories that support an agenda.

The myth: In the FOF, you gain knowledge that you cannot gain elsewhere.
The truth: Anything you learn of value in the FOF you can learn elsewhere, and with more substance. What’s more, what you learn outside the FOF you can learn without being taught the questionable theories that support the above-mentioned agenda.

The myth: You experience true love and friendship in the FOF.
The truth: You do, but your love grows larger than a mountain the day you leave.

256. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 3, 2008

#250: Okay I’ll give you a brief overview of the tapes and that’s it because not everyone here is interested and I don’t think it’s the proper venue for it.

The first group, the Remote Viewing tapes, are all about learning how to expand your idea of yourself. Mr. O’Donnell gives you exercises in learning how to expand yourself into the the world of nature, the spirit world, and into your own psyche along with getting you comfortable with out of body experiences that you are able to produce from these exercises. He speaks thorughout and is directing you through these exercises.

The Remote Influencing tapes are quite different in that he directs you with his voice through visual meditations that you in turn create. This is done after he teaches you how to get to beta, theta and delta so that you can create these states yourself from these different levels.

So you are able to learn on the tapes how expansive your mind really is and how much you are really capable of. Being a meditator myself for many years I found the tapes to give me not only different methods I could use on my own but was able to get into much deeper states of meditation. He also uses sound along with his voice (he’s a trained hypnotherapist) to help you get into these deeper states. All of this involves a significant amount of trust of the user and nothing is gained without it.

Whalerider, please do not ask me again. If you want to know more about it either buy the tapes yourself, call me, or go to the website and learn more. Or better yet call Mr. O’Donnell yourself.

257. Elena - June 3, 2008

Thanks Laura for hearing. I say it would be worth looking at ancient civilizations and comparing them with ours to understand some of what has happened to us because in doing so it is not difficult to realize that they were under utterly different conditions to those that we are in now. The history of facts reveals the history of mankind’s soul movements. The myth instated by the Fellowship that mankind has not moved a millimeter in its entire history is the most pervasive idea that it has managed to instill in its followers. That alone is enough brainwashing to keep the fearful inside its so called protective bubble. The horror of our situation is that the truly responsible cause of submitting to Cults and dictatorships is ignorance. Not just lack of information and knowledge about the history of mankind but a loving insight into its struggles and especially a committed participation in actualizing the ideals of our well being. Not just ignorance about the world outside but about who each one of us is and our incommensurable reach. We are indeed like chicken who gave up flying and allowed for domestication to destroy our wings. We live in our toenails and have forgotten the expansiveness of our sight. We are looking at the world through binoculars convinced that what we see is the whole picture but when we allow ourselves to let go of the programming of our time then the stories of those before it come and tell us about their struggle and cheer us on. We carry their spirit in our spirit because after all, we are their reincarnation.

I do not wish to get into the darkness of our time for I do not believe it is too dark and hopeless. If I can amass this much gratitude for life at the end of each day it is hard for me to testify against it.

Just as an individual has to overcome hiser personal story to come to terms with hiser humanity, human beings must overcome their time to come to terms with their “Godliness”. An individual’s reach is only the expression of her all encompassing participation and no matter how much denial s/he finds, whatever comes from that struggle is the expression of her time. The fact that some are mouthpieces while others do the walking does not matter, it is the soul of the time what they all carry within them.

Life is, was and will always continue to be the greatest stage for human beings to develop the spirit and the spiritual in their practical reality as individuals as much as in the communities they happen to belong to.

Sick and corrupt communities develop sick and corrupt individuals. We do not allow for poisonous crops to be planted in agriculture, why do we allow for poisonous cults to flourish in our societies?

258. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 3, 2008

Regarding my last post to Whalerider:

I would like to add that after being involved in an organization run by someone who continually took people’s personal power away from them (all in the name of enlightenment) learning from an individual that I had the ability and capacity within myself to create whatever I wanted to for my life helped me get back on track with my own self-healing and I am a more self-reliant, responsible person today because of it. I have a lot less fear of change and try new things without as much self doubt. I recently made a huge life change.

There are many ways to play the role of the victim on this planet and remaining in the Fellowship is one of them. Leaving the Fellowship empowers people and allows them for the first time in a long time for some, to go find their own path and be responsible for their own lives, wherever it may take them and for each of us that may be quite different. I’m sure in speaking to people just leaving you will find most of them (if they have left when they are ready) experience a sense of empowerment for the first time in years. That should be a clue for people who are still stuck on the fence.

259. Anna - June 3, 2008

Here are two excerpts from the last chapter of ‘The Wrong Way Home: Uncovering the Patterns of Cult Behavior…’ by Arthur Deikman.

This book has been a powerful key for me as I emerge from the Fellowship of Friends. The second piece is long, sorry, but worth it…

*

If you still feel immune from cult influence, I can offer a checklist of even/day behaviors that you may recognize all too well:
1. Speaking of adversaries or outsiders (e.g., conservatives, liberals, Yuppies, blue-collar, rich, poor) as if they were all the same; characterizing them by negative traits only; attributing unflattering motives to them but not to oneself.
2. Lacking interest and information concerning the actual statements and actions of opponents or outsiders.
3. Failing to consider the possible validity of an adversary’s point of view.
4. Not taking a critical look at one’s own position.
5. Disapproving or rejecting a member of one’s group for departing from the group position, devaluing the dissident, regarding him or her as an annoyance or a problem.
6. Feeling self-righteous.

*

Two primary cult behaviors, compliance with the group and dependence on a leader, have served necessary functions in the survival of the human race. They are very important in childhood, where they provide safety, security, encouragement, and support. Groups and leaders have legitimate functions for adults as well. They can stimulate, reinforce, and guide individuals’ energies in constructive ways; they provide meaning and counter isolation and loneliness with acceptance and warmth. But the fantasy of parents must be transcended by adults; for us it is no longer functional. Indeed, regressive dependency makes our survival and progress more difficult because reality must be distorted in order to construct shepherds out of sheep.

Adult human beings stand together in a horizontal plane, but they all too often try to organize it vertically. The reader may assume that the eye-level world is his or her basic perspective. It hasn’t been for me. Whenever I gave a public lecture I noticed that immediately afterward I felt let-down, disappointed, no matter how well the audience had responded. Eventually, I realized that I was preparing my lectures as if the authority figures of my early professional years would be listening. At the periphery of my mind was an image of them seated in the back of the auditorium. There were no specific faces, just a row of sceptical shadows. I worked hard shaping and rehearsing my lectures to convince them of the rightness of my views, to win their approval, their grudging admiration. But when I stepped up on the platform and looked over the audience I could see that they weren’t there. They hadn’t come.

This fantasy of fathers, this vertical perspective, had been hidden from me until my disappointment alerted me to it. I know I am not alone in this. I can recognize the persistence of what I call the
parent-world in the attitude and behavior of my friends, in the implicit views of authors whose books I read, and in the statements of public figures. As a psychotherapist, I find the parent-world in the fantasies of people with normal and useful adult positions-teachers, house-wives, carpenters, lawyers, executives, students-people in all the occupations that comprise everyday society. The evidence is strong that all of us show the effects of having been raised in a hierarchical world in which there were those above us and those below. From such a perspective there is always a higher authority.

Perhaps I can bring this home with another demonstration. Morality is usually experienced as a given, as a code whose violation brings punishment or, at the least, guilt. Most people, if they look within, discover a subtle fantasy that someone or something is keeping score of their good and bad deeds and that in the future-usually after death-there will be a settling-up. If you doubt this, try an experiment. Imagine that there will be no ultimate retribution for anything you do, no denial of Heaven to the wicked. Imagine that whether you behave like a saint or a sadist, are kind or cruet generous or selfish, it will make no difference when you die. How you behave is entirely up to you. Do whatever you want, there are no celestial consequences. Imagining this, what would you do, how would you behave? (Try it now. Take a few minutes to see what it is like.)

The first time I did this experiment it was an uneasy experience. Imagining myself to be the only authority gave me a sensation of wobbly morality. Principles that had seemed rock solid were swaying in the breeze, and in that moment I did not know how I would choose to act if there were no retribution, no reward, no eventual Judgment Day. That uncertainty brought into focus the assumptions and dynamics of my ordinary world and made me realize how my eyes too frequently gaze back over my shoulder at the invisible, hovering parents of adult childhood. When I asked friends to imagine the same parentless scenario I could see it was unfamiliar to them also, even startling and uncomfortable, although they were independent and self-supporting-adult by all usual criteria.

If gods do not occupy the heavens, and wise parents do not head governments, if there are no experts without error and prejudice how can we find our way to a home that is not a dream? The child’s home is in the past. We may try to create a home again in the families in which we are the parent. Wife, husband, and children can provide a place where love is given and received. But as adults it is not the same because our reality is different. We are far from being the parent we imagined as a child; pretending doesn’t work. Can there be home for us?

The eye-Ievel world is the perspective that arises when the parents in the sky disappear and their images superimposed on other people dissolve and vanish. As you look around, no one towers above you, everyone looks back at the same human height. Although the parents are gone, the landscape is not threatening, it spreads out in all directions, inviting exploration. It is open and calm, in contrast to the world of childhood fears.

The child fears that the disappearance of parents would release anarchy, hatred, and destruction because in the parents’ world the child knows no power, no control that is not imposed. In the eye-level world freedom is of a different kind, more responsible than before because the choices are your own, they are uncoerced and unbribed. “Free will is the experience of being the author of the law you obey.” This world is different from that shaped by the dependency dream.

Although we have no parents in the eye-level world, when we face each other we find companions. We share the same need for meaning, the same intimations of transcendence, the certainty of death, the saving joy of love. We can sense a new connection, a linking of equals that makes all of us one family, yet individuals. Only in the eye-level world do we emerge as ourselves, true to our own perceptions and strengths, able to respond realistically to the world that surrounds us.

Cult behavior is the expression of the dependency dream. It is a self-deception more serious than may at first appear, for at this point in history problems confront us that threaten everyone on earth: nuclear weapons, contamination of the environment, spiraling populations. To solve these problems we need as much realism as possible, and realism is the first casualty of cult behavior. We must leave the security of the cult circle and move forward into the eye-level world. Whether we are inclined to lead or to follow, lets hope we can see that cult behavior is too risky, the comfort of its fantasy a lie. Reality may be more uncertain than we wish but its freedom is a bountiful reward. When the gods and demons disappear a different world appears, rich in sunlight and storm but without fear. Standing together on that level plain, we find ourselves in a new home, one that is quite real. There are no outsiders. And it is worth more than any dream.

260. Kid Shelleen - June 3, 2008

An observation:

Quite a number of the people I knew in the FoF had profound Father issues.

261. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 3, 2008

Somebody sent me this. I find it comes in handy.

How can you tell when people are playing the victim? There are 3 obvious clues:
Victim Clue #1: They Blame
Victim Clue #2: They Justify
Victim Clue #3: They Complain

262. zannos - June 3, 2008

263. Vinnie the Fish - June 3, 2008

Hi Susan, I wondered if you think the body types stuff is utter nonsense now that you’ve left (like Joel F)? Or you still think there’s truth in it?

264. Vinnie the Fish - June 3, 2008

259 Anna. That was interesting… also it is obvious from wars that ‘normal’ people under no restraint will do inhuman things like torturing others when they have no chance of getting punished. Similar to a leader of a cult, who has no opposition or disagreement from any quarter. When the social pressure is removed, there is often no conscience to govern behaviour.

265. lauralupa - June 3, 2008

Thanks Anna for the great excerpts.

A nice video for all nature lovers.

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=8aufuwMiKmE

266. paulshabram - June 3, 2008

263 Vinnie the Fish

“All models are wrong. Some models are useful.”
-George Box

267. Yesri Baba - June 3, 2008

263 Vinnie

Yeah, I agree with Paul

Like the model that you are a smug, self satisfied jerk-off.
Probably not completely accurate but there is a lot of truth in it.

268. brucelevy - June 3, 2008

267. Yesri Baba

So, at least two of us remember Vinnie.

269. Just Another Voice Out Here - June 3, 2008

226 Whalerider

“How about that idea that the higher mind is accessed in a deep, meditative trance state without the need to be in the hyper-vigilant state of ‘self-remembering’ or endlessly repeating the silly ‘30 commands’ like a robot? I think that’s pretty cool, too, don’t you?”

______________________________________________________________

Once upon a time, as the story goes, Mr. Buddha thought so as well, and concluded you can’t make it permanent that way, and that deep meditative trance states based on concentration/absoprtion are ultimately a distraction. Your results may vary.

229 Elena

Well put. You can write beautifully. Thanks.

242 Elena

“It would be interesting to take a look at Kingdoms in old ages. Could the level of misery that we have today compare in any way to the quality of life in say, Egypt?
They were kingdoms but culture mattered. People mattered. Life mattered. Today we are democracies, individuals, but where did culture, life and people go?”

______________________________________________________________

Of course we weren’t around then. But I suspect much of this sentiment is romanticized. RB, for one, liked to hearken back to previous societies that were supposedly more “cultured,” but this was a ruse designed to justify expenditures on art he personally liked, and to strengthen the idea that aristocracies, theocracies (in reality, plutocracies) are inherently superior to democracies, presumably run by “sleeping machines” who “lack culture.” In many such societies, and certainly in Egypt, most people were treated as tools to enhance the comfort and egos of the (relative few) rulers. (Sound familiar?) “Culture” as we think of it probably did not exist for those miserable people building the pyramids–they didn’t even get to go watch the ruler’s favorite performers. They were too busy trying to stay alive. And I suspect most of the priests and kings were too busy acting like RB to stand in humble awe of the universe. The same can be said of Renaissance Europe. Life may have been cool for the relative handful of aristocrats, who lived a life of leisure at the expense of the serfs and peasants, and that’s why they eventually had their heads removed from their necks. Was life in Golden Age Greece wonderful? Again, not if you were a slave, and I doubt many of those fellows walking around in togas and sandals were pondering Socrates–they executed Socrates, remember? How about imperial China? Were the people whose corpses were tossed into the Great Wall they were forced to construct imbued with inscrutable wisdom by their exposure to Art?

Those who purport look to the past, and who purport to value “culture,” are often those we today call “conservatives.” We have seen over the past few years with great clarity the true agendas of some of the standard-bearers of such pretended values: it’s all a front for “wringing their bread from the sweat of other men’s faces.”
Most of these ancient societies that built the great artistic monuments were colonizers that destroyed and enslaved the indigenous cultures so that they could live well without much personal effort. For most of the higher qualities you admire, I’d look to those indigenous cultures that were trod under foot.

257 Elena

“The myth instated by the Fellowship that mankind has not moved a millimeter in its entire history is the most pervasive idea that it has managed to instill in its followers.”

______________________________________________________________
I believe RB instilled the idea that mankind used to be superior, and degenerated and devolved to the extent that the society gives all individuals some power, instead of just the RB-figures. How convenient.

“We do not allow for poisonous crops to be planted in agriculture, why do we allow for poisonous cults to flourish in our societies?”

_______________________________________________________________
I realize you’re just using an analogy, but you might read up on agriculture a little more. Start with The Omnivore’s Dilemma, by Michael Pollan. The current state of Western agriculture is a very sad situation, for many of the same reasons mentioned above. We allow poisonous cults and poisonous crops because we are lazy and ignorant and let others shape circumstances for thier selfish purposes.

259 Anna

Excellent piece. Thanks. I particularly like the simple statement that “pretending doesn’t work.” We all tend to forget this.

All cults, religions, traditions, whether “true” or “false,” are just maps. The most powerful, cosmic, and objectively-designed spiritual technology is ultimately just a description of reality that offers us the possibility of ultimately leaving it behind in favor of true reality. No matter how true, it can easily be inverted and misused by our egos to perpetuate our enslavement. The Fellowship never possessed even a complete map, but perhaps more important, it was never designed to lead anyone to a place from which the map could be set aside–it was designed to create people who worship the map. As Anna’s excerpt illustrates, we have been conditioned to lack the confidence to actually verify much of real importance–the more critical the verification, the more we shrink from the task and hope a parent figure, or a map offered by a parent figure, will supply the answer. The answers are never concepts or techniques.

270. zannos - June 4, 2008

263 Vinnie
I refer you to my post at 175 for my opinion about the usefulness of classifications, and certainly to
266 Paul for a far better and briefer statement of the same idea in his quote from George Box, “All models are wrong. Some models are useful.” Personally I still find the body type theory as propounded in the Fellowship to be useful. And the theory of centers of gravity perhaps even more so.

271. Elena - June 4, 2008

Vinnie 264

Exactly! That is precisely the point. Human beings in extreme situations for no matter what reason start doing strange things to other human beings such as line them up to be Robert’s three meals no matter how young they are, line them up to give all their money, no matter how old they are, line them up to never speak again from their own brain and heart and mouth but listen to what Robert and his chief enablers have to say.

Are you out now Vinnie? If not, what is still keeping you in? I wish you could be honest but it must be very difficult for you to say anything when even when you agree you are barked at. I wonder what you guys want. That too would be good to hear.

Another Voice,

Thanks for considering it. While I understand the position you are taking because it is the one that regular society dictates through education and although I am not nearly as “cultured” as I would like to be to answer your points of view, here are some different angles.

The idea that the Egyptians who built the pyramids were slaves has been much revised. Apparently they were volunteers! Volunteers or slaves, is it not a fact that that we do not understand in our time what knowledge they had to build them so accurately and in connection with the stars? I much enjoyed Steiner’s interpretation that men of ancient cultures were much more strongly connected with higher realms and that this connection gets lost as we move into the heart of Western Civilization. The idea that the practice of mummifying the body was meant to have the soul sink deeper into the physical realm, become more connected to Earth, sounds coherent. While I follow your point of view, I guess what I am asking is, were there people just being allowed to starve in those cultures as we are willing to do now although there are enough resources to feed everyone if it mattered enough? We have the science, the technology and the resources, we just don’t have the willingness. And knowing that these things are true, what does it mean for each of us personally to have the attitude that there is nothing I personally can do about it so it is better not to think or care too much? Since these are attitudes, implanted attitudes by the programming of our time, what would change in one’s consciousness if one stopped viewing them as impossibilities?

While I tend to reduce the problem to the practical side of simply feeding people on the planet, what I am really after is the understanding that ‘wholefulness’ is not only necessary as a practice in our everyday life but as a “vision”, a “state of consciousness”. While all that is terribly ambitious, we could come all the way down to the understanding of how we personally conceive “Time” “money” “love” “food”
And what adding my time, my money, my love and my food adds to those concepts. Without “My,” time is eternal, money is abundant, love is unlimited and food is enough. From one angle, consciousness is the road from mine to ours with the understanding that it is in fact neither mine nor ours but a gift. As a gift, nothing is owed even if the gratitude is overwhelming. What Ancient Cultures had that we’ve lost was the understanding that there were beings behind the stage and their connectedness with these beings or forces in the stars, planets or constellations, the Earth, the life of the Sun and other galaxies was perfectly practical. The fact that the priests and kings had the knowledge and dictated the rhythms does not necessarily talk of corrupt kings and priests all throughout human history. This is where our visions differ. The decadence of “nobility” as it happened in time, was not only an external decadence but an inner decadence of the hierarchic structure. By the time Socrates lived, the decadence was already so similar to ours that it is easy for us to relate to it. And yet, it is in the Art of Greece where the human figure becomes totally human and the Gods are gradually left behind.

The idea that man has never been as materialistic as today sounds accurate and the fact that we continue to connect to other realms through drugs or practices of various kinds fits the possibility that now that we are finally here, we might try to understand what it is that we came for.

What matters is not only what we are looking at but how we look at it. As Fellowship “refugees” it seems important to recover from the massive destruction of human “worthiness”, for the Fellowship does not carry any of it in its womb and we have been its children. People who left the Fellowship recently are in the worst spiritual limbo that people can be no matter how O.K. we might look from the outside.

The Fellowship jumped from “being beggars” and eliciting our “humility” to being conscious beings and eliciting our vanity and skipped the human, demolishing our dignity. Without the dignity, nothing of beauty can grow inside of it.

With this, it guaranteed slaves of the beggars and total surrender to the conscious being, willingly and unquestionably. Those who were not in its guts, good for you, but I was swallowed more deeply than Pinochio’s grandfather by the Whale, even if I poisoned it inside. It is tragic that people do not know that it hurts them, damages them because they have lost all hope of there being anything better. They’ve stopped wondering and feel fairly safe in the imposed repetition of a made up life. It is not surprising that life consumes them without wonder: they smile without joy and laugh without conviction; effort, more effort and with the exhaustion of pure muscle they never conceive or experience gratitude for the simplicity of being. The emotional center dries up in starvation, the mind’s ability to think is replaced by meaningless sequences and the body continues to make money for the pulpit.

We have such a poor structure to help in the recovery of those who leave that I’ve heard of a few people re-joining.

272. lauralupa - June 4, 2008

New faces are appearing on the GF site these days. Quite a few are people who had been in the Fellowship for over twenty years and have just recently left.
From far away, this seems a very good sign that some movement is indeed occurring inside the bubble, at least for the not hopelessly solidified believers.

Susan, if I remember well you had mentioned an end of may deadline for sending things to the lawyer. Can you give us an update on the letters and petition?

273. Vinnie the Fish - June 4, 2008

270, Susan, it seems you have a useful attitude to take what made sense from the FOF rather than throw it all out because of a leader’s behaviour.

The latter seems self-destructive to me, rejection of the past and everything worked with so sincerely for so long. More positive to see it as a learning period.
If nothing else to learn not to put more faith in what someone tells you than your own intuition and common sense.

274. Vinnie the Fish - June 4, 2008

271 Elena – ‘it must be very difficult for you to say anything when even when you agree you are barked at.’

Yes I worked out what you mean. Bruce and Yesri Baba are so unkind, I often shed a tear after reading their harsh words. They seem like a bitter little hemmorhoidal gay couple, are they?

It could be an overreaction to their previous kinder-than-thou behaviour in the FOF – like John Candy in some film, sleeping in the same bed as a male, and they wake up horrified to find they are spooning, so they leap out of bed and start talking about rough stuff like football as if to cover up the embarrassment of their gay behaviour.
So you need a hug Bruce? Yesri?

275. jack - June 4, 2008

Hi.
Re the petition;
we are at the stage of requiring a donation to cover the time it will take the lawyer to match the letters Susan received, to the “allegations” in the petition and see what we can state directly and what we didn’t receive corresponding letters for and will therefore have to remain as allegations.
As soon as we cross that hurdle, I will install it on its web site.
For further information go to The Fellowship of Friends WikiSpace.
Click on Petition, then go to the bottom and you will find Susan and my E-mail addresses.
I wish you all the best.
Jack.

276. FOF myths, lies, etc. - June 4, 2008

myth: The FOF body type theory is “objective knowledge” and beyond argument. A person’s body type is obvious to anyone with the right experience and understanding. Anyone who suggests otherwise simply lacks the “level of being, the “understanding,” and the powers of observation of people working on themselves.

fact: There are many body type theories, and the theory of seven types outlined by Rodney Collin and later used by the fof may be one of the more interesting ones. However, a theory is all it is. When discussed honestly, there’s an acknowledgment that the theory is far from perfect and far from objective. Tellingly, there is plenty of disagreement related to the supposed body types of individuals within the FOF, and — also tellingly — a large percentage of people in this world don’t fit easily into the classic examples.

myth: The theories of 7 body types, center of gravity, alchemy, and chief feature are the best tools for seeing ourselves and others.

fact: Again, these are all theories of the FOF. For a time, some of these theories may have been helpful in getting us to think about our own actions and reactions to the world around us. But how practical they are is a matter of debate — a debate which has never occurred in the FOF. (Many, many debates have not occurred in the FOF, as debate and open discussion would call into question the entire premise of the FOF. People would start thinking.)

277. whalerider - June 4, 2008

Just another voice out there:
Once upon a time, so the story goes, Buddha jumped over the fence of his parent’s walled compound and discovered the painful truth that he had been living his early life in a comfortable illusion. Thus began his search for enlightenment. He did not look for enlightenment very long in books, but within himself. Meditation was one of the main tools he used to access that truth. So the story goes, he reached enlightenment meditating under a Bohdi Tree.

So IMO meditation is not the means to make the higher mind permanent, it is already there, meditation is one of many techniques to access the higher mind by quieting all the noise and internal chatter. You still have to chop wood, carry water and watch your step.

278. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - June 4, 2008

275 and 277 are newly moderated.

279. lauralupa - June 4, 2008

Vinnie, now that you’ve gotten that out of your system, I hope you don’t mind changing the subject and maybe answering Elena’s question about what is keeping you in. I also have something to ask you, and I’ll be grateful for an honest answer: are you working with the Sequence? And if so, with what results?

280. brucelevy - June 4, 2008

274. Vinnie the Fish

“So you need a hug Bruce?”

Thanks for the offer, but I’m content to sit back and watch you reveal the narcissistic jerkoff that you are.

281. Elena - June 4, 2008

Vinnie, now I understand why they don’t buy a word you say. It’s a good thing somebody knows better than me what to bark at, I just bite when it gets too close. Your explanation is so pathetic Vinnie, you don’t really expect any sympathy do you? You do have a kind of twisted soul don’t you? Are you struggling with your own gayness?

My apologies Bruce and Yesri for doubting your talent.

282. Vinnie the Fish - June 4, 2008

280 – See, same words, must be the same little person!

Laura, no.

283. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 4, 2008

Whalerider: ‘So IMO meditation is not the means to make the higher mind permanent, it is already there, meditation is one of many techniques to access the higher mind by quieting all the noise and internal chatter. You still have to chop wood, carry water and watch your step.

I totally agree. IMO, you are accessing something already there. And your higher mind is affecting your life, whether you are aware of it or not. Only problem is we’re so full of left brain linear thinking we don’t know the difference most of the time listen and are directed by our left brain, which has limited capacity to give us anything but more of the same.

284. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 4, 2008

In continuing my 283 blog, I question anyone who claims to be ‘enlightened’ since the higher realms or higher states of consciousness are available at any time to anyone interested. Just more Top Dog, Top of the Heap, Head Honcho stuff. Geeze!

285. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 4, 2008

Back in 1991 I met a very unassuming, uneducated and iliterate little lady from the Ozarks. She was the first person to ‘enlighten’ me on her understanding that we all have it within ourselves to do whatever we want. She was a person who had meditated for many years of her life and was well acquainted and comfortable in the higher realms. She helped me out of the Fellowship and for that I am grateful and at no time did she tell me she had something I did not. Sometimes the truth comes in unexpected forms.

286. brucelevy - June 4, 2008

282. Vinnie the Fish

Why would I use different words to describe a constant, finite quantity/quality?

287. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 4, 2008

Vinnie the Fish: I think you should change your name to Vinnie the Fisherman, because you are good at fishing but not very good as being a fish.

288. Vinnie the Fish - June 4, 2008

Hmm that’s very obscure and Zennish Suzy! Sounds like a compliment so Thanks!

Elena you are a testy little cute girl when scratched! The word is gaiety by the way, and no I’m not struggling with my own gaiety. Hope not.

Using someone else’s words Bruce… rather finite of you.

289. Just Another Voice Out Here - June 4, 2008

277, 283

“So IMO meditation is not the means to make the higher mind permanent, it is already there, meditation is one of many techniques to access the higher mind by quieting all the noise and internal chatter. You still have to chop wood, carry water and watch your step.”

______________________________________________________________

Exactly. You can’t chop wood while in a meditative trance. (Not to be confused with other “meditative” states. A true meditative trance, such as allows contact with “higher mind,” eliminates sensory contact with the “outside” world. If you’re speaking of some other kind of “meditative trance,” OK, but be specific.)

It’s not an issue of whether “higher mind” already exists, or doesn’t. I’m fine with the approach that it does–that comes down to semantics. But the ultimate truth that we are “already awake,” and “already have within us everything we need,” etc. need to be applied in proper perspective. When misapplied, they result in a person disregarding any concept of effort or self-discipline of any kind, since “we’re already awake.” If I treat someone like shit, it’s OK–we’re already awake. There are lots of “Advaitists” or “nondualists” who apparently believe their path ended when they read they were really One With Everything and there was Nothing to be Done. IMO, baloney. They’re still the pricks they were the day before. They may have higher mind fully operational within them, but so what.

If a person doesn’t want to meditate, fine–there are many paths and I sure don’t know even a fraction of the possibilities. Many forms of effort may be pointless, if not counterproductive. Many people who seemed to know something really didn’t. Many people use “spiritual” concepts for their own selfish purposes. But none of that means that all we need to do is tell ourselves “I’m already awake.”

290. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 4, 2008

‘Many people use “spiritual” concepts for their own selfish purposes. But none of that means that all we need to do is tell ourselves “I’m already awake.’

That is exactly my point. Many people are not really listening nor do they care about their higher selves and continue to relate to their world from linear brain or from the automatic, non-thinking parts of themselves. It does take a particular effort to connect to higher thinking and to relate to what is happening other than from the usual chit chat we hear in our heads; it usually just doesn’t just ‘happen’ on its own unless one is lucky to have had epiphany or a jolt out of it by accident.

291. Vinnie the Fisherman - June 4, 2008

289: A true meditative trance, such as allows contact with “higher mind,” eliminates sensory contact with the “outside” world.

This may not be true. I find sensory contact is a necessary ingredient, but can’t be sure if it’s the same state or ‘higher mind’.

292. paulshabram - June 5, 2008

Elena

I’ve really enjoyed your last several monographs.
From 271
“People who left the Fellowship recently are in the worst spiritual limbo that people can be no matter how O.K. we might look from the outside.”

When I left the FOF there was nothing like this blog (or the internet). I was entirely on my own. I had seen the anguish and internal torture, and heard of suicides of members that took that leap. I did not seek any member out to tell them what conclusions I came to; I let them come to me. The reason was that the push through the last barrier was a passage through a sense of utter hopelessness. And while that moment only lasted a fraction of a second, it was one of the worst moments I can remember. I was not wiling to be part of pressing somebody to leave unprepared. In this blog, however, we can speak our minds and those that listen are doing so because they are seeking to know.

In contrast to what someone posted earlier, The FOF I knew was not a cult when I joined (I think there were about 30 members). There was a considerable amount of skepticism about Robert being a “#5”. His predictions were something of a joke. Gradually, what was “verification” based became faith based. It seemed like a slow progression to me. We were busy with exercises that seemed worthwhile, yet they drew us away from seeing what was really happening. It was after the expansion to many distant cities (other than Hawaii) that influx of a different kind of “student” began to show up. These were the “faithful” with dour affects and judgmental “photographs”. This was when the “old guard” like Stella were pushed aside. Was this always RB’s plan? I just can’t give him that much credit. I believe sociopath’s operate instinctively. They may be tactical but not strategic.

Paul

293. paulshabram - June 5, 2008

242 Elena

“It would be interesting to take a look at Kingdoms in old ages. Could the level of misery that we have today compare in any way to the quality of life in say, Egypt?
They were kingdoms but culture mattered. People mattered. Life mattered. Today we are democracies, individuals, but where did culture, life and people go?”

A quick review of ancient cultures, like Ancient Egypt, reveals that the ruling classes held their power though cult behavior. A Pharaoh, for example, was considered a living god. The level of violence and misery was certainly greater on a per capita basis then than it is now. The exclusion of classes of people, genocide, etc. was acceptable practice. Oddly, those societies that remained hunter gatherers in sparse environments developed cooperative cultures and did not develop significant weaponry. Those cultures, like ancient Egyptian culture, that developed sophisticated food production experienced high population growth. Those same culture developed sophisticated weaponry and were the ones that struck out to conquer.
A look at our own western culture shows that in the last couple of centuries the living standard and life expectancy have increased dramatically. Little of this can be attributed to medical science. Rather, it is the abundance of food production along with sanitation practices that is responsible for this. With more food came increased population. And the society with the most food has developed the most sophisticated and terrible weapons. The food shortages that are beginning to appear now are due to economic turmoil. The abundance of food has made the western world complacent. Yet for my entire lifetime the actual world food supply reserves would only last 2 weeks.

On the positive side, today you see women being treated with more equity. You see human rights advances that bring into sharp contrast reprehensible dictatorships such as the Myanmar Junta. A few hundred years ago atrocities such as ethnic cleansing in Rwanda, would not have even made the news. The “Kingdoms in old ages” you pine for exist only in fairy tales.

294. whalerider - June 5, 2008

just another voice out there (or any other voice out there for that matter):

If you’d care to carry on this dialog, tell me more of what you mean by ‘awake’.

What would be the qualities and manifestations of a more ‘awake’ person whom is schooled in the fourth way, works on all their centers simultaneously, and does so during their every day life…for the dual aim of evolving their own consciousness and the consciousness of others in an effort to relieve just a small fraction of the suffering the Absolute incurs on our behalf in extending Its conscious aspect within the Ray of Creation solely for our benefit?

You say, “They may have higher mind fully operational within them, but so what. They’re still the pricks they were the day before.”

Well, I guess that’s what we mean by different levels of being. You are right, calling oneself awake doesn’t give one license to hurt or take advantage others. Near as I can tell, the more awake people tend to be great healers.

The higher mind may already be there ‘fully functioning’ but dormant and only engaged for use in case of emergencies, but does the prick-like person make the effort to listen to their higher mind or are they just stuck operating from their prick-like personality more often that not because they don’t make that effort? What would be the life experiences that lead one to display prick-like behavior anyway? Is it genetic or fated? Can it be changed? Or healed?

Maybe I’m preaching to the choir here….Wouldn’t making the effort to get in touch periodically with one’s fully functioning higher mind be a step toward reducing prick-like manifestations if that were one’s aim? In fact, doesn’t one need to have an aim of some sort for the higher mind to be intentionally engaged at all? Does the ‘more awake’ person need their higher mind fully engaged to chop wood and carry water…something they already know how to do…and isn’t consciousness alone all they need for watching their step? Tell me then, what do you think is the function of higher mind?

Everything in nature serves a function. (Even human art. IMO, Nature uses art for sex, for hooking up bees with flowers, so do humanoids. Some make worshipping art their religion. Who can argue that art is not sexy?) We, too, are of nature; (I don’t believe we were dropped off here by aliens although many of us act like invading species). So, IMO, everything within us serves or has served a fuction, including the higher mind. What could that function be?

295. Elena - June 5, 2008

Paul,

There is no interest for me in competing about how much more suffering there was for those of you who left twenty or thirty years ago than for those now. Perhaps the fact that the Fellowship had not drowned into such a tremendous systematic cult behavior was less damaging for those who left before and if that is not the case, I was not there to state the difference.

I am talking about what I see today. Being up here in Oregon House and visiting people gives some clues. I was only up here for six years and yet, that, together with the other eleven of behavior conditioning produced very definite patterns of which I am slowly moving out not without difficulty. As I look at others here, no matter how much “out” they are, there are strong traces of Fellowship indoctrination which continue to determine how they look at life, which is not surprising but not necessarily healthy.

The massive leaving of the past year will take years to digest and we are hardly ready to help each other. You for example, speak without kindness consistently, how do you ever expect to be of help? You obviously have not really understood what happened to you either. Nevertheless, I appreciate your dialogue even with the unkind tone.

Your vision of Egypt and the great ancient cultures is the mainstream vision of it which I no longer wish to run by. It is with great joy that I’ve found different interpretations of history.

Too much from those ancient cultures cannot be explained from the factual instinctive and materialistic point of view that mainstream thinking likes to take. With that point of view, when we look at our life, everyone is just another poor bastard who was born and died without it mattering what we lived.

In the version of history that I am enjoying, ancient civilizations were closely connected still with the divine and their Art and Culture testifies for this connection. Their great Art and Culture. The discoveries, inventions, the development of trade, agriculture, architecture, music all of which continue to develop mattered and matters for those who want to look at it.

Greece seems to have represented the moment of transition in those cultures and in Rome Jesus with the statement, that “I, Man, am the bearer of light”, “I, no longer respond to the hierarchy of the state but to my self or the divinity within me” is crucified by the State as many other men and women after him in Western Civilization. Even so, Rome gives the foundation of Law still practiced by most nations today and the individual finds some ground of his own on which to stand and develop.

I am not saying Paul, no matter how much you try to ridicule me, that Kingdoms are better than democracies. I am trying to suggest that the way we look at the history of mankind has great influence on how we look at our present life. The fact that so much of the sacred has been taken out of the mainstream understanding, leaves the standard individual with a “television” point of view, disconnected from the reality of everyday life. If you cannot appreciate the greatness of human struggle in the midst of the daily “run down”, then the “run down” invades the space of the sacred within you. This is as true about how we look at our personal lives as of how we look at the things that happen in the community we live in or, as you show in your interpretation of the Great ancient cultures, how we look at the human experience in general.

The issue matters to me, because I do believe that a great deal of indoctrination in the Fellowship came from how people were willing to adopt its ideas of “life being evil, sleep; mankind never evolving, history being meaningless and only the personal struggle being worth the effort”. Do you see how it all connects? From stripping ourselves of our human heritage to the egocentric struggle to awaken individually, for yourself and only yourself without the slightest regard for what happens around you within the Fellowship or outside of it. Had we not lost our connection with our selves as human beings, we would not have allowed the Fellowship to strip the boys, the women and the men from their most basic human dignity. The boys with the sexual abuse, the women, as third class citizens collecting money for the cause and the men as second, subserviant enablers to Robert’s cause, the King, the Queen, the divine being without ever being able to say anything for themselves, not even protect their marriages against the rape.

Here again it proves obvious that the individual’s as much as the society’s state of health, are thoroughly interconnected. An individual’s personal behavior is determined by her outlook on the world at large and that connection is what determines her practical participation in the community. First and third line of work is what determines the outcome of the second line. Because our third line disconnected from the human legacy (cultures, dead sleeping people on the planet, mankind never evolving, etc) and the first line disconnected from the personal experience, (family, friends, nation, essence) we did not develop a second line (responsible community) and allowed for Robert, a narcissistic sociopath to rape everyone sexually, instinctively, emotionally and intellectually and condition each one of our movements including the way we dressed.

What happens in the circle is determined by the way the centre and the periphery connect. A weak understanding of the human legacy in all its majesty produces men without dignity, integrity or understanding and our indignity translates in the way we act in our communities. A strong understanding of the majesty of the human experience, translates into a practical conditioning of never allowing an individual’s dignity to be lowered or belittled by anyone else in the community, let alone the authorities in power. This is what we lost for over thirty five years in the Fellowship of Friends and it will take lifetimes to recover from such misery. In fact, over a thousand people still seem to be holding it as the ideal model for their lifetime.

The fact that the Fellowship of Friends, like other cults, is an amplified reflection of the decadence of our time should give us enough awareness of the difficulties at hand. Regular society is not functioning very differently to how the Fellowship functions: people go to work, make money for themselves and taxes, eat, go to a movie, a gallery, sleep, in the midst of a tremendous competition for the job, the money, the food, art and space. As we move into a global economy, the discrepancies become even more desperate because the pressure from other countries will accentuate. In the hierarchic structures even of slavery, the slave mattered and with that I don’t mean it is a better system. In our modern world, no body matters and anyone can get run over not because there isn’t enough for every body but because we are not conscious enough to share what is there and like spoiled children, rip each other off what ever is possible beginning with the fact that we can’t be bothered to give each other the TIME. The world economy is a reflection of our level of consciousness and testifies for the fact that people care much more about their car than about how many children starve in Bangladesh or Africa. Life is practical and so is consciousness.

I hope you don’t expect me to apologize for giving you this length of my time which I give with much pleasure and gratitude for the dialogue.

296. paulshabram - June 5, 2008

Elena 293-“I am not saying Paul, no matter how much you try to ridicule me, that Kingdoms are better than democracies. I am trying to suggest that the way we look at the history of mankind has great influence on how we look at our present life. The fact that so much of the sacred has been taken out of the mainstream understanding, leaves the standard individual with a “television” point of view, disconnected from the reality of everyday life. If you cannot appreciate the greatness of human struggle in the midst of the daily “run down”, then the “run down” invades the space of the sacred within you. This is as true about how we look at our personal lives as of how we look at the things that happen in the community we live in or, as you show in your interpretation of the Great ancient cultures, how we look at the human experience in general.” –

Elena, I was not kidding or ridiculing you when I said I enjoyed your previous posts. I really got a lot out of them. They are insightful, intelligent, and very astute. I read every word with relish.

So when you present “your reality” which is not in any way supported by a stitch of physical evidence, nor by the actual written account of ancients that were actually there, you ask me to do exactly what you rightly rail against. That is, if I am to accept your “version of history” i have to do it with ON FAITH that somehow you have knowledge from a source i cannot access.

-“In the version of history that I am enjoying, ancient civilizations were closely connected still with the divine and their Art and Culture testifies for this connection.” –

Isn’t that Robert’s line of thinking? Perhaps you should listen to yourself … “As I look at others here, no matter how much “out” they are, there are strong traces of Fellowship indoctrination which continue to determine how they look at life, which is not surprising but not necessarily healthy.”

Elena, if you really believe that profound art and culture, as well as spiritual connections, are not happening in the world right now, maybe you should get out of Oregon House once in a while.

God knows I do love a good argument, yet I have no desire at being viewed as “unkind”. Bruce was right to say that I am a straight shooter. I am, and I aim for right between the eyes. If that angers you a little (or a lot), well I can understand that. Perhaps you can interpret my directness as just that. I do not expect or seek any apologies from you or anyone else.

With Kind Regards,
Paul

297. Elena - June 5, 2008

Thanks Paul for the clarification.

“if you really believe that profound art and culture, as well as spiritual connections, are not happening in the world right now, maybe you should get out of Oregon House once in a while.”

I do and I tried to address that in “The discoveries, inventions, the development of trade, agriculture, architecture, music all of which continue to develop mattered and matters for those who want to look at it”.

So maybe we agree more than words can tell. What I keep trying to address is the fact that in the Fellowship indoctrination the world view is so negative that the subsequent depression of the individuals who share it leads them to become more dependent on its conditioning. If I had not suffered that process I would not be able to talk about it. People outside of the Fellowship with similar “world view” suffer similar depression and carry similar attitudes but in the Fellowship it is greatly exaggerated and the result is that people’s dignity and self empowerment is much more damaged no matter how much false pride they carry themselves with. Those concepts combined with the repression of emotions of self respect that translate into negative emotions, result in a much more docile individual but also a great deal more vulnerable to life. The Cult becomes a necessity for survival.

”In the version of history that I am enjoying, ancient civilizations were closely connected still with the divine and their Art and Culture testifies for this connection.”

Isn’t that Robert’s line of thinking? Perhaps you should listen to yourself …”

I appreciate your punctuality and this is the first post in which you are kind, thank you for that too.

In Robert’s version of history the human being does not exist unless he is young and has balls. He is a strange specimen of a man no matter how one looks at him. For Robert, only the Gods and the divine matter and he is one of them. With that presentation he can treat students with the appalling humiliation that he constantly treats them with pretending to question anyone who does not allow it with not having developed humility, through his enablers. You allow yourself to be treated like a dog, Girard seconds him by stating it is good and necessary and himself behaving like a dog and the rest of students run along waggling their tails or leave with their tails between their legs. How much more depressed could we be when we have not had a taste of dignity in thirty-five years?

I am afraid I have never seen Robert address an ancient culture. He is too ignorant for that so I cannot say that what I am saying is what he also thinks. He picks pieces of information from different cultures that he can distort and adapt to his imaginary picture and feed the dogs with: ‘Sequence dears, jump, jump, sit, sit. One, two, three…..six. And again….one, two, three…..”

If the Fellowship of Friends were advertised as the Human Circus, maybe they could get people to pay for watching the incredible phenomena of people being trained to serially rape young men and think they are developing consciousness. Isn’t it tragically comic? And they still go around in their impeccable little uniform with not a stain in their pants convinced they’ve cleaned their soul in and out clumsily rushing to the car so that they don’t have to connect to the ex-student or the “local” representative of the six billion dead people on the planet. They look so trimmed and proper and so pathetically deceived in their conviction, how could one not feel impotence rather than anger, compassion rather than hatred? And it is not that they don’t suffer with the same intensity the pains and pangs of everyday life or struggle with the same difficulties the rest of us do, it is that in doing so they like to think that their struggle is worthier because after all, they are not better than life, just “luckier”.

In ancient cultures, the Gods still live with the people. Even in Greece, the God still lives in the temple. If you’ve entered these temples or travelled in Egypt, could you not experience with awe the beauty of that connection? Or were they just a handful of rocks put together by the great grand parents of these idiots that don’t even speak English to the tourist? Or like Robert, did you have to get back on the plane in India because you could not stand the sight of a hundred Indians looking at your suit and missed the vision of the Taj Mahal where the perfection of the two worlds is perfectly actualized? Your relationship to ancient cultures can come through your appreciation of them today. What do you feel when you observe the consistency with which the Egyptians tell their story in every wall and monument they ever constructed? Were they not speaking to people? Did people not matter? Was the pyramid of any value without the King buried inside like most of the Art we find today in which what matters is the price?

I don’t see the divine today living in the art or culture of the Nations in power; they seem as depressed as the Fellowship after serially raping other nations for centuries. Where I see it is in the standard human being who stops and gives you the time when you ask for it, without making you feel that you’ve stolen and disturbed him. (This is rare in some cultures where you have to beg even to invite someone for dinner.) Isn’t it ironic that Robert would not even give one the time? What dog would have dared ask him for it? Fortunately men like that are everywhere but in some places more than others and it would be worth learning from those where there are many of them. We each have something to teach the other but there is little chance of getting there if we can’t even give others enough credit to listen to what they have to say. People from developed nations would greatly profit from the warmth of people from underdeveloped nations and people from underdeveloped nations would greatly profit from the individual’s firmness of developed nations. For that, it seems that we have to come to understand that we are one world, one human being and we are responsible for each other’s well being. There is no freedom or the presence of the sacred where well-being is the private property of a few; not in money nor cultural matters. This is why I’ve chosen the Public Square to develop a dialogue where anyone can express himerself without being bound to a particular position or the hierarchy that usually comes with such positions.

I thank you for your patience in trying to develop this dialogue, it is not easy but it is worth the effort and there is obviously a lot that we are just beginning to understand about the Fellowship of Friends phenomenon. Recovering dignity after loosing it for so many years, does not happen overnight.

298. Just Another Voice Out Here - June 5, 2008

293 Elena

Although I admit I have at times been guilty of belittling you, Elena, as have a few others, I really don’t see Paul as having done so. So at least consider that you’re seeing offense where none is intended or need be taken.

Paul and I have written responses to your recent comment that are very similar. Each of us feels your view of history is romanticized and lacking in factual basis. I for one don’t disagree with you to the extent that, say, Chartes Cathedral itself and the manner in which it was built (with the contributions of thousands of ordinary people) seems to reflect a depth of spirituality that may arguably be lacking in the developed West these days. But you go far beyond that to making generalities that I don’t think are just a matter of point of view.

You say:

“In the hierarchic structures even of slavery, the slave mattered and with that I don’t mean it is a better system. In our modern world, no body matters and anyone can get run over not because there isn’t enough for every body but because we are not conscious enough to share what is there and like spoiled children, rip each other off what ever is possible beginning with the fact that we can’t be bothered to give each other the TIME.”

You may be extrapolating your personal bitter experiences, and your longings, into a world view that says “today, we are all beasts, but in the old days, people had greater regard for one another and were imbued with appreciation for higher things.” Notwithstanding that you say “I don’t mean it is a better system,” to suggest that slave owners were somehow more respectful to their slaves than the typical person today is to his neighbor (and I don’t know who that “typical” person might be–are we speaking of “life people”?) seems, to say the least, lacking in experience as a slave. Sure, you’ve been a woman who has felt abused, by partners and by gurus, but try being a actual slave for a few days, let alone a lifetime, and then let’s go over this again. As Abe Lincoln said, “Whenever I hear anyone arguing over slavery, I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally.” Before you respond that you weren’t trying to suggest that slavery was a good thing, I do understand that–but you do seem to be spinning out fantasies about how humane people were during times when the vast majority of people lived lives that were “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short,” prompting them to revolt against all of those high-minded leaders because they had nothing to lose.

299. Vinnie the Fisher - June 5, 2008

296 Elena: In Robert’s version of history the human being does not exist unless he is young and has balls.
That b-word again Elena….

300. God Laughing - June 6, 2008

I have a question,

Recently a friend bluntly said
“Are you going to be an eternal ex-student?”

I had talked to him about a party I went to
with lots of ex and some still-in students,
about a discussion on the Greater Fellowship
and living in OH

Eternal? I said defensively. “I only just left.”
“These people are my friends.”
“There is a lot of movement, soon we are all over the place.”

But…is he right?

301. Elena - June 6, 2008

Another Voice, you win, it is not the slavery of the past that I would like to stand up for, and yet there have been forms of economic slavery in which the maid-slave or gardener-slave matter emotionally. I guess what I am trying to say is that for Robert and the Fellowship of Friends as an institution no one matters emotionally. Also that in what one sees in the relationships of daily life, people are connected to frames in which they matter according to their respective position within that hierarchy but not objectively by the shere fact that they are humans.

People find every excuse to not treat humans like humans because they don’t belong to their ‘frame’. That is a great limitation of consciousness.

You don’t really belittle me as much as you belittle yourself when you hang on to weaknesses in a presentation and suck on them like a teak rather than encompassing the meaning and the reach of what is being said. This last post from you, although kinder in tone, repeats that pattern. Have you ever tried to say yes, this is goddam good and I can make it even better? It is worth trying!

302. Elena - June 6, 2008

God Laughing, if you think you’ve digested all you need to digest about your experience, why can’t you move on?

303. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

297. God Laughing

It’s a label, with it’s own implications. You don’t have to embrace it nor ruminate about it, unless you want to. It’s “their” label.

304. Elena - June 6, 2008

God Laughing,

The fact that they show impatience about being questioned over and over again is a very good sign that they are uncomfortable in the shoes they are wearing. That is good news to me. I hope they jump out of their shoes soon enough!

305. Traveler - June 6, 2008

Re: eternal ex-student (God Laughing)

The Fellowship of Friends practices dissociative thinking. By that I mean: moving on to the next experience when the previous one becomes either unpleasant or its novelty is exhausted. This way, the past is never fully integrated and owned. Moving on to the new and improved teaching, new name, new form, new statues, new color scheme, new dear friends, new relationships, new cities, new countries – as if the old never happened. Preferably pretend we’ve always done it this way. Preferably pretend those who dropped out along the way never existed. Preferably pretend we were never really expecting the end of the world. Leave it behind, separate from mechanical I’s. Why can’t you just be in the present? Feeding off of the buzz and excitement of new ultimate solutions. Stop thinking and end your problems. Turn from those unpleasant emotions about what you witnessed, be blissfully unaware in the sheltered ignorance of the now. Be an innocent baby.

To those ex students now struggling with guilt over why they can’t just let go and forget about the Fellowship already, I offer this for consideration: the attitude that you should just move on with your life and that you are weak if you don’t, persists from your FoF programming. Joyfully burn it on a pile of old daily cards. Don’t just leave the organization, stop living by its rules. You have every right to do with your life as you please. You have given some of your best years to this cause, you have been deeply invested, most of the people you know are members, it will always be a part of your experience and, like it or not, it has brought you to where you are today. Who on Earth would expect you to casually brush it aside forever? A remark such as “will you be an eternal ex-student” attempts to belittle you, induce shame in you, and hide discomfort. Let them be. But you, respect yourself for what you have been through. Go back and revisit your past, weave a thread through your life and connect it into one story. Go and do your processing, and take as long as you need.

306. veronicapoe - June 6, 2008

297/God Laughing

The answer is “yes.” But in my opinion the more important question is, will the label “ex-student” forevermore define you and therefore limit you?

I think each of us will remain “in relation” to that set of experiences. To a certain extent that set of experiences has in some measure defined our lives and will continue to some extent to affect our lives. Earlier experiences that were significant stay with us and we are “in relation” to those experiences. They are rings in our particular trees. Their importance may wax and wane depending on what other experiences we are having and/or integrating.

But maybe our focusing on those experiences in FOF, from one or more different, later-acquired, frames of reference, just gives us the impetus to wring what can be wrung from those experiencesas we move on. What has previously defined us need not limit us. Sometimes it just provides the raw material for new understandings.

307. Ill Never Tell - June 6, 2008

I do not know what could be worse:
eternal ex-student
or
eternal current student
You have to decide for your self.

Given the cult ure that the Fellowship of Friends could, and in fact did, become, my reasons for leaving were based on the concept of: Did I want to eternally be party to such a bastardization of the pursuit of consciousness that the FoF powers-that-be decided it was to be? I had to seriously weigh the consequences of the eternal recurrence of my actions. If, in 35+ years, FoF could become what it did – pretty much the opposite of what it started out to be – then what else could it become? Especially with little collective conscience.

All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.
Edmund Burke

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.
Albert Einstein

At least two thirds of our miseries spring from human stupidity, human malice and those great motivators and justifiers of malice and stupidity, idealism, dogmatism and proselytizing zeal on behalf of religious or political idols.
Aldous Huxley
(Student of the Fourth Way)

Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction.
Blaise Pascal

Science may have found a cure for most evils; but it has found no remedy for the worst of them all — the apathy of human beings.
Helen Keller

When good people in any country cease their vigilance and struggle, then evil men prevail.
Pearl S. Buck

He who does not punish evil, commands it to be done.
Leonardo da Vinci

308. Elena - June 6, 2008

Traveler, you’re “god-dam good” and it is a pleasure to know that you’re so clear about what happened to us. Thank you.

Another Voice,

“In our modern world, no body matters and anyone can get run over.”

By that I mean that Colombians, Italians, Russians, Americans and people from anywhere, were able to get run over by the Fellowship without anyone doing anything about it for thirty five years and still running with apparently there being nothing to do about it! It is not only possible but legal to run people over.

I also mean that whole countries can get run over by another for the resources and what has anyone been able to do about it? This is such common knowledge that I don’t expect to have to clarify every word when I make such generalizations.

And then returning to the individuals, is it not a fact that people who imagine they are ‘professionals’ today do not have TIME? The way time is handled by people says a great deal about them. People are too busy to be emotional. They then break down, have strokes, heart attacks whatever, but they’ll never recognize that they’ve run themselves down the desert and back, without water. People with TIME are tramps!
Robert NEVER had time for anyone but himself. Himself doing the money making show or “himself” doing the sexy making show. In the handling of time people express concisely the little interest or the great identification we have for somebody else. It is an art the instinctive center has of letting others know that they are not important, that you do not have time for them or that you are very important as long as the identification lasts.

In “relaxed” countries, time does not matter so much because property doesn’t either. You walk in and out of people’s houses without calling because their house is your house and you don’t need to announce yourself. Whatever food there is is shared, if there is work, it is shared too and if you sit and do nothing today and work more tomorrow it is fine. Your timing is respected. This is changing rapidly even in these relaxed countries and the speed of make money and more money quickly and everyday for everyday of your life is displacing the possibility of TIME being shared reasonably. The absurdity is that millions of lives are invested in the well-being of a few people who seldom have the being or the dignity to appreciate it. It is not just the economic absurdity what matters, it is the quality of human life what is equally poor in no matter what sphere of society and it is difficult to view the possibility of healing when there is a generalized depression for human worthiness.

I talk about these things as symptoms of our time but I don’t think they are the only symptoms. I am not nearly as depressed as you are interpreting me.

I hope this makes it clearer. I appreciate your being demanding with me, I do wish to clarify where I am going, even if just for myself.

309. paulshabram - June 6, 2008

God Laughing’s question (297 ) is rhetorical.

I offer this model construction for thought:

When I was 2 days old I had twice the memories of when I was 1 day old. When I was 4 days old I had twice the memories and experiences of when I was 2 days old. My experiences and memories continue to grow at a logarithmic rate. My true past memories are altered by new ones, like layers that are not quite transparent piled on top of each other. For survivals sake, I calculate the future based on my experience. I do this in two ways. One is based on my percieved past, that is I believe that my future will be like my past. The other is I extrapolate a future based on a vision of what I would like it to look like. Each of us tend to do this with emphasis mostly on one of these methods or the other. We can all do both.

While the immediate future is somewhat predictable based on the immediate past, a given future is never ever guaranteed.

If you are wounded by your experiences, and you choose to believe the future will be like the past, you will continue to suffer from your wounds. While you may have been a victim of an horrid manifestation, you can make a choice as to whether you newly victimize yourself in the future.

What happened happened. None of us can alter that, but we can accept and understand the past with a new future trajectory of our own choosing. Slowly, we can transform the demons into stone and bring life to loving memories.

310. Mick Danger - June 6, 2008

Who says God can’t take a dirty joke?
FoF, the best friends that pretention can buy.
Don’t you want to know who your friends really are?

311. veronicapoe - June 6, 2008

304/I’ll Never Tell

If, in 35+ years, FoF could become what it did – pretty much the opposite of what it started out to be – then what else could it become?

This is the group myth at work. The FoF was, beginning on January 1, 1970, intended as one and only one thing, and it remains today that thing: a renewable source of narcissistic supply for the top dog.

312. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

308. veronicapoe

“The FoF was, beginning on January 1, 1970, intended as one and only one thing, and it remains today that thing: a renewable source of narcissistic supply for the top dog.”

I’ll have to assume you were there on Jan. 1 1970 and had access to RB’s brain, because otherwise your statement is pretentious bull shit posing as fact. If your above statement is true, than here is the “octave” that never deviates, and remains straight on it’s path.

It’s more likely that RB actually believed one set of “stuff”, that over time became it’s opposite, or somethingorother.

313. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

Of course, at the same time, it could also be true that RB was born to become the sociopath that he is, and that may be the likely course he took. There may be “change” for the sociopath, but I’d guess it’s rarely the change that the sociopath is “claiming” (“I’ll die a higher man than Christ…blah blah blah).

314. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

Without the parasitic sycophants I doubt RB would be where he now is.

315. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

veronicapoe (308): “This is the group myth at work. The FoF was, beginning on January 1, 1970, intended as one and only one thing, and it remains today that thing: a renewable source of narcissistic supply for the top dog.”

The more I read the blog speak with other former followers, it becomes clearer to me that it’s always been a cult. And it’s odd that I ever would have believed otherwise. I think the myth grows out of the fact that it’s more comfortable to believe that WE weren’t deceived “back then.” We were different, and the fof was different. To state the obvious: We were deceived, just as everyone is being deceived right now.

About the idea further up the page that many of us are “eternal ex-students”: I have no idea what that means. Sounds like some sort of 1984 doublespeak, but if it means what I think it means, it pretty much speaks for itself in the fof-is-the-center-of-the-universe department.

Good response from I’ll Never Tell:

“I do not know what could be worse: eternal ex-student or eternal current student. You have to decide for your self.”

And Traveler wrote about the same topic and the FOF’s dissociative thinking:

“…Preferably pretend we’ve always done it this way. Preferably pretend those who dropped out along the way never existed. Preferably pretend we were never really expecting the end of the world. Leave it behind, separate from mechanical I’s. Why can’t you just be in the present? Feeding off of the buzz and excitement of new ultimate solutions. Stop thinking and end your problems. Turn from those unpleasant emotions about what you witnessed, be blissfully unaware in the sheltered ignorance of the now.”

Has anyone summarized it better?

316. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 6, 2008

‘The more I read the blog speak with other former followers, it becomes clearer to me that it’s always been a cult. And it’s odd that I ever would have believed otherwise. I think the myth grows out of the fact that it’s more comfortable to believe that WE weren’t deceived “back then.” We were different, and the fof was different. To state the obvious: We were deceived, just as everyone is being deceived right now.’

Who is deceiving who? I think the deception lies within ourselves.

317. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 6, 2008

My answer in #313 is referring to a paragraph quoted from #312.

318. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

Bruce, yes, I think both are true. I agree with you on this topic, and I think veronicapoe is right as well. Many things are true. I don’t think we had to be there to know it was a cult in 1970, any more that we have to be with RB at all times right now to know that it’s a cult right now. For me, I’d really prefer to believe there were entirely benevolent reasons for the FOF coming into being. Unfortunately, I’m realizing that this is yet another example of denial on my part.

I’m also realizing there may be quite a bit that I still don’t know about this man, and about the group that I joined, which is one of the reasons that I keep checking into the blog, and keep talking to other friends who were there. Even in the last two or three pages, I’ve become more enlightened about how he thinks and what he’s been up to… 64 in a day? Really? That’s our “beloved teacher” Holy sh–! Was I living a dream, or what?!

(And when a part of me begins to think the entire ’64’ story was one big exaggeration, I immediately catch myself and realize: This, too, is more of the same denial. Not me, I couldn’t have been so stupid, could I? And a person couldn’t be so incredibly twisted and evil. could he?

I doubt that Burton knew exactly what he was doing at all times, and that he somehow envisioned the future enough to know that he’d be where he is now. And you and others are correct that a lot of what the FOF has become is the result of the sycophants that have added their signature to it and enabled the guy. But I’ve been able to conclude from everything I’ve heard and seen firsthand from this person that something was seriously “off” with him long before he founded this cult. Call it lack of conscience, narcissism, multiple personalities, whatever. It’s been there, and we were somehow lured into it.

Just checking in again to say hello. Again, I’m writing this for current “members” mostly. You do know, don’t you, that this man holds absolutely no feelings for you, and can discard you at a moment’s notice? What about that has anything to do with “love”?

319. paulshabram - June 6, 2008

veronicapoe (308): “This is the group myth at work. The FoF was, beginning on January 1, 1970, intended as one and only one thing, and it remains today that thing: a renewable source of narcissistic supply for the top dog.”

If you read Bonita’s account, which was written decades after the beginning, I an see how Rear View Mirror (312) would draw the conclusion:

“The more I read the blog speak with other former followers, it becomes clearer to me that it’s always been a cult. And it’s odd that I ever would have believed otherwise. I think the myth grows out of the fact that it’s more comfortable to believe that WE weren’t deceived “back then.” We were different, and the fof was different. To state the obvious: We were deceived, just as everyone is being deceived right now.”

But I was there pretty early on. I started sitting in Sambo’s with Stella, Harold, and the all night group (sometimes Robert) and even went to meetings months before I actually paid my money and joined. I joined a discussion group for $35 bucks a month which gave me access to (me a 17 y/o kid) doctors, lawyers, Ph.D.s, an amazing professor of physics and really dow- to-earth good folks like Rosemary Mac Donald and Don Burrell. And these folks would listen to what I had to say. We were studying Gurdjieff and Ouspensky’s ideas. Not Roberts. Somewhere around 72 and early 73 the meetings became more formal and RB began to concentrate the cult stuff, weird prediction. I had one eye on the door, like most everybody else. But I got caught up in the reverie; I lost site of the door for a good while. When I found it again the FOF was a full blown dyed-in-the-wool cult. Whaappen’d???

It’s not a myth to me. I saw it happen.

Did Robert always intend start a cult idolizing himself and serving his extreme salacious nature. Did he calculate and patiently build his empire? Wow, you give him a great deal of credit. RB is not what I would consider the “sharpest knife in the drawer”.

Here’s my opinion, and it’s only that…
RB joined Alex’s group in the late sixties. Probably to gain access to sex. He got kicked out. He lost his elementary school teaching job for “hugging my kids too much”. He was out of money, didn’t have a car, and was forced to live with his mother. He was desperate for money and he saw how Alex did it. He conned Bonita for a small stipend and discovered that the method worked. He thought he’d ride the con for awhile. He didn’t actually have to read Ouspensky. Other people did that. He kept poking at the limits, and usually got away with it (not always). He’s been pushing it ever since.

We made it a cult.

One of the thousands of lessons I learned from the FOF experience was that when I make a decision that entail risk I acknowledge that the improbable sometimes happens and shit goes wrong. I do that upfront. That way I can take responsibility for my decisions and never again make decisions lightly.

I say take responsibility for a bad decision. You bought a bag of lemons. So make lemonade.

320. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

“Who is deceiving who? I think the deception lies within ourselves.”

Well, both are true. Burton was deceiving us… and we deceived ourselves. Doesn’t need to one or the other.

I think this idea that we turn everything back into ourselves, by the way, was an extremely effective method to get people to change the subject within the FOF. If you objected to anything in the cult, you weren’t looking closely enough at yourself.

To truly “see yourself,” you need to do both. Have your open to the people around you and the world around you, and also keeping your eyes open to your own actions and reactions. Largely, that realization is what freed me from the FOF.

321. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

😉 adding the missing word…

To truly “see yourself,” you need to do both. Have your EYES open to the people around you and the world around you, and also keeping your eyes open to your own actions and reactions. Largely, that realization is what freed me from the FOF.

322. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

315. Rear View Mirror

“But I’ve been able to conclude from everything I’ve heard and seen firsthand from this person that something was seriously “off” with him long before he founded this cult. Call it lack of conscience, narcissism, multiple personalities, whatever. It’s been there, and we were somehow lured into it.”

I wouldn’t disagree with that.

323. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

Paul, so if the FOF had continued the G. and O. studies, it would not be a cult? “We were studying Gurdjieff and Ouspensky’s ideas. Not Roberts.”

I’ll repeat what I wrote above… “I think both are true…. Many things are true. I don’t think we had to be there to know it was a cult in 1970, any more that we have to be with RB at all times right now to know that it’s a cult right now. For me, I’d really prefer to believe there were entirely benevolent reasons for the FOF coming into being. Unfortunately, I’m realizing that this is yet another example of denial on my part.”

And “denial”, by the way, is an example of deceiving one’s self. But to get out of the denial, looking both inward and outward is the key. It’s that inward — “what am i doing wrong here” mentality — that keeps the FOF going strong. No one is opening their eyes to what’s happening right in front of them. We need both to truly see.

324. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

When a sociopath believes he or she is doing something for altruistic reason, or because they “know better” that doesn’t make it less sociopathic. They can believe their “lie” fully and immediately, because there is no realistic self view, there is no “outside of one’s self, everything is self-referential. It’s a fucked up, consciousless mechanism from the start. There is no reality reference to draw upon, because they are simply not “human” in the usual accepted generalities of “being human (as in humanity).

325. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

320. Rear View Mirror – June 6, 2008

” Paul, so if the FOF had continued the G. and O. studies, it would not be a cult?”

That’s not how I comprehended what Paul was saying.

326. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 6, 2008

#317: I think this idea that we turn everything back into ourselves, by the way, was an extremely effective method to get people to change the subject within the FOF. If you objected to anything in the cult, you weren’t looking closely enough at yourself.

Well put. It places people in powerless positions and effects their ability to make decisions for themselves.

327. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

paulshabram wrote; “Did Robert always intend start a cult idolizing himself and serving his extreme salacious nature. Did he calculate and patiently build his empire? Wow, you give him a great deal of credit. RB is not what I would consider the “sharpest knife in the drawer”.”

I can’t speak for anyone else, but that description doesn’t refer to my attitudes about Burton or the FOF. I never said he “calculated to patiently build his empire.” I doubt that he knew where the FOF would be in 38 years. But I now believe that his ill intentions, his illnesses, and his deceptions reach back to the very beginning of the cult.

This has been a recurring topic throughout the blog… What is a cult? Is the FOF a cult? When did it become a cult? and so on. A few current and former members have stepped in to object to the use of the word at all. Some don’t like it for the year 1980. To me, it’s an interesting discussion that gets to the crux of the issue, and helps all of us see the truth about the FOF more clearly — and as wakeuplittlesuzy seems to imply — the truth about ourselves.

It’s a simple question… Is the FOF a cult? And when did it become one?

Wouldn’t that be a great Meeting Topic at the Town Hall?

328. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

Bruce wrote, quoting me: ” Paul, so if the FOF had continued the G. and O. studies, it would not be a cult?”

“That’s not how I comprehended what Paul was saying.”

—-

I did re-read it, and I still see denial — the same denial that I’ve seen in myself about this topic. Many people who were part of the FOF in the early 1980s feel the same way about the 1980s that Paul feels about the early 70s…. They had a wonderful experience in 1980, but then at some point, things changed for the worse, and so on.

329. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 6, 2008

The belief that one will lose their connections with friends or their spiritual connection if one leaves the Fellowship is reinforced within the group by current members and RB. For many this is the glue that keeps the boat from sinking.

The more people leave the Fellowship but remain in the area maintaining their friendships and continuing to explore and maintain an interest in their spiritual life, the safer people will feel in leaving and trying something new.

330. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

wakeuplittlesuzywakeup: Beautiful vision of a healthy future.

331. veronicapoe - June 6, 2008

309/Bruce

I’ll have to assume you were there on Jan. 1 1970 and had access to RB’s brain, because otherwise your statement is pretentious bull shit posing as fact.

Pretty strong reaction to my opinion, but I’m not sure why. It is my opinion for sure, and it is founded upon extended factual investigation. What the participants other than the top dog thought it was is not relevant to the conclusion I reach, because there is a factual history of manipulation and manufactured consent from “day one.” By the way, I reached this view comparatively late, many years after I left FoF. It was instructive to interview some of the players who left early. Said one such player, “There was something both contemptuous and contemptible about him. I observed in him a radical lack of integrity. My take on him was ultimately sociopathic.”

I do not think adults “become” sociopaths. I think they are sociopaths by the time they reach adulthood.

332. Opus111 - June 6, 2008

I heard something recently (I will paraphrase) that ” the day someone announces he is enlightened, that is the day that person becomes truly dangerous”.

Robert announced in 1976 (before my time) that he had crystallized into a number 5 or whatever number. That made ground for large celebration, gifts, etc…, to be renewed on a yearly basis.

If FOF was not a bona fide cult in the early 1970, it certainly had most of the ingredients and RB ready to instinctively pounce on his opportunities (it does not take a smart man to do that, but rather a driven, greedy and opportunistic one). The cultivation of phrases such as “confusion is a higher state”, “reverse what life does”, “do not believe the i’s”, “C-influence and I love you”, etc… were the mantra we fell asleep to.

Friendship became the lovely mud we waddled in for years.

333. veronicapoe - June 6, 2008

I should add that the player who said that left in 1971 and had no knowledge of the group’s subsequent history. Discovering that person was like discovering an undisturbed archaeological site.

334. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

“I do not think adults “become” sociopaths. I think they are sociopaths by the time they reach adulthood.”

I would agree with that with the caveat that sociopaths, as children, often show that tendency fairly early. I was implying that it is a progressive path that brings one to the heights (or depths) of sociopathy, and it’s effects on the scale that RB displays

335. veronicapoe - June 6, 2008

I don’t disagree, but I don’t understand the hostility of your initial response.

336. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

“It is my opinion for sure, and it is founded upon extended factual investigation.”

As accurate or inaccurate as it may be, your “factual examination” relies on other’s opinions and interpretations as seen through the persons’ own filters. I would agree that he’s a sociopath, I would agree that he’s done irreparable harm, I would agree that he’s a sociopath and has been one for most of his life, but I can’t state as fact that he calculated the depth and breadth of what now exists as the FOF based on secondhand opinion of a third party.

337. wingsspread - June 6, 2008

Back in 1995 or so, when we were studiously not investigating the Buzbee allegations and not reading anything about FoF on the web, my husband and I had several conversations about whether or not the Fellowship was a “cult”. Curiously, we concluded that WE were not in a cult, but many of our fellow members of the FoF were definitely in a cult (i.e. THEY had a cult member relationship to the FOF, but we did not because we did not follow RB’s every desire or even most of his desires, we were not “inner circle”, my husband had never had any sexual dealings with RB, etc). We had similar conversations in 1997 when our fellow members were preparing for the Fall of California – we would go along in a mild way (“after all, why not have a medical kit to hand, doesn’t do any harm”) but WE were not “believers” and only did what we did to work on “self will” and our own inner work. Looking back, of course, WE were always in a cult, but unwilling or afraid to see ourselves that way. I wonder if all cult members in all cults have the same conversations?

338. wingsspread - June 6, 2008

Where does the smiley face come from – I didn’t put it there? Odd.

339. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

Don’t take it too hard, most of us have been pretentious at times with stating our opinions as facts. Many of us cultivated that crap attitude in the FOF, with it’s reinforcement. And none are more occasionally guilty of it than I. Pretension and bullshit…it’s what’s for dinner.

340. paulshabram - June 6, 2008

325. Rear View Mirror
“I did re-read it, and I still see denial — the same denial that I’ve seen in myself about this topic.”

We have essentially been saying the same thing. So what do you think we are “in denial” about? Or more specifically, what do you think I am “in denial” about? Are you telling me you know what I was thinking and feeling better than I do? There were no more than 30-40 people when I joined. A significant exodus had occurred. It was a struggle to buy into the “C Influence” crap. Some people did so easily and some people just left. The rest of us hung on… too long. Wouldn’t be something if we DID KNOW A higher being? The possibility was irresistible to some of us.

We were duped. Am I in denial about that? We were the sycophants to some degree or another. Without us RB would have been bouncing from one psychiatric unit to the next. We made it a cult.

You were duped. You didn’t join a cult. You became the sycophant. Wouldn’t be something if you ACTUALLY KNEW a higher being and could rub elbows with them? Wasn’t that irresistible to you? You continued the tradition and added you’re own contribution. The cycle continued.

Now a bunch of people are leaving. RB will back off from the limit. People will be happier and grateful. New people will join a discussion group. They will not join a cult. They will become sycophants. They will add their own fuel.

For me this is what this blog is about. To attenuate the recruitment of people who don’t think they are joining a cult. And for those inside that are looking here, to hear our stories and make up their own minds.

341. nigel harris price - June 6, 2008

Glad to be back on the blog after an interlude (space betwwen parts of a play) in the asylum. One thing before I rest-up – “That which is unreal seeks to devour that which is real”, even when awakened. n.

342. paulshabram - June 6, 2008

Welcome back Nigel! Missed you.

343. veronicapoe - June 6, 2008

332/Bruce

I can’t state as fact that he calculated the depth and breadth of what now exists as the FOF based on secondhand opinion of a third party.

Just to be clear, I didn’t say this either. I did say, “The FoF was, beginning on January 1, 1970, intended as one and only one thing, and it remains today that thing: a renewable source of narcissistic supply for the top dog.” Individual “relationships” are sources of narcissistic supply. So are possessions. I do not claim the baroque monstrosity that exists today was foreseen by anyone in 1970.

344. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

Paul, here’s one of the many statements that you wrote that I do agree with (and we do agree on many things, and I’m glad you’re posting on the blog): “For me this is what this blog is about. To attenuate the recruitment of people who don’t think they are joining a cult. And for those inside that are looking here, to hear our stories and make up their own minds.”

With that in mind, I think there’s something of value in going all the way back to the beginning and examining the attitudes that we all had about those very first years. Was there a time when the Fellowship of Friends was legit? Was Robert Burton ever legit? And related to that, do some of the positive experiences that we had in the Fellowship (whenever they happened) make it legit? And is there something of value there right now? All of these questions are related.

When I hear someone say it was different in 1970, I’m a skeptic. It’s my belief that things have been sliding right from the start, so from that standpoint I agree with you and find your accounts fascinating to read. And I also believe that things could easily get noticeably worse in the coming years.

But you wrote: “I joined a discussion group for $35 bucks a month which gave me access to (me a 17 y/o kid) doctors, lawyers, Ph.D.s, an amazing professor of physics and really down-to-earth good folks like Rosemary Mac Donald and Don Burrell… We were studying Gurdjieff and Ouspensky’s ideas. Not Roberts. Somewhere around 72 and early 73 the meetings became more formal and RB began to concentrate the cult stuff, weird prediction. I had one eye on the door, like most everybody else. But I got caught up in the reverie; I lost site of the door for a good while. When I found it again the FOF was a full blown dyed-in-the-wool cult. Whaappen’d???”

You’re right that I can’t know how you feel… anymore than you can know how I feel — and maybe we’re both making assumptions about what the other is thinking and feeling about these topics — but you did ask us (rhetorically or otherwise) “What happened?”

My educated guess is that what happened is that you began to SEE what was happening — not that anything fundamentally changed around you.

You made a number of statements:
• The payments were less.
• People were down-to-earth.
• The group was smaller back then.
• We studied ideas from Gurdjieff and Ouspensky, not ideas from Burton.
• There were doctors, lawyers, Ph.Ds, and professors.
• RB didn’t get into his predictions yet.
• It was not yet a “full blow dyed-in-the-wool cult.”

Many of us have made very similar statements about 1975, 1980, 1985, 1990, 1995, 2000, and so on. And when we said it, it was denial as well.

Anyway, I get the feeling that many people may not give a sh– about this topic… But in my opinion, this gets to the heart of the matter. It is THE topic when it comes to the Fellowship of Friends. Denial is what makes everything possible there.

345. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

One difference back then was having someone like Donald McDonald (the supposed first conscious being to be produced in the FOF factory). Of course when he left RB said he had been wrong to say that of Donald…gee, I wonder why. He wasn’t afraid of RB, and he frequently voiced HIS view of “the work” as he understood it (from G and O’s ideas, not RB’s). He did this, I think, until he reached a point where he couldn’t support the acute change in direction. That’s how it seemed to me. I could be wrong, but back in the 70’s to early 80’s, before the actual orgies occurred, and RB was only sexually abusing one person at a time, the work “seemed” more vital and substantial, and less connected to RB himself. But after awhile one was trying to live their idea of “the work” in spite of RB, not because of him. Eventually this approach wasn’t tolerated anymore. I’m open to the possibility that I’m wrong here, but that’s how it seemed.

346. brucelevy - June 6, 2008

Donald also had a fucking brain and conscience, something now totally lacking in the “leaders”.

347. lauralupa - June 6, 2008

it may sound too religious, but do you people think that the process unfolding from this blog and at present spilling out (or in) to the Fellowship community could be described as an experiment in shared redemption?

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=hWUfFwoe8ko&feature=related

348. paulshabram - June 6, 2008

Rear View Mirror (340)
I agree and endorse your last paragraph. I appreciate this topic line very much. (I’m also having a little fun.)

“Many of us have made very similar statements about 1975, 1980, 1985, 1990, 1995, 2000, and so on. And when we said it, it was denial as well.”

I can tell you that it was distinctly different in the early 70’s. There was a lot of smirking about obtaining our tax exempt status because “ha ha we weren’t really a church”. There were a few kooks and wacko’s, to be sure, but when distant centers opened with people recruited having never been exposed to the main group or even RB, the “faithful” began to arrive. It was 76ish or so when the core began to think of the FOF more as a “church”. There was truly a “sea change”, no kidding. But it wasn’t homogeneous. My guess is that the outlying centers went through a similar evolution and that’s why you have heard what you’ve heard.

At the same time, in late seventies, the press began to take notice. Even before Jonestown and Alanon (sp? the rattlesnakes in the journalist mailbox stuff) had occurred there were articles about the “quasi religious group” causing issues in the small community of Oregon House. In the 80’s 90’s and beyond there were articles, picked up nationally, with accounts of RB’s abusive behavior. I remember a series done in the early 90’s (remarkable because it showed a picture of “Robert” that was actually Gerard). So your first 5 bullet points I can buy for 75 and maybe 80’s, but 90’s and 00’s… people were being bald faced lied to and they just weren’t doing reasonable due diligence. The last two bullet points are just factually wrong for all the times you mentioned.

I would like to repeat that I really appreciate this discussion, and I think it is a core topic for those that are more logical than emotional. I think there are other core topics and look forward to those as well.

Paul

349. paulshabram - June 6, 2008

343. lauralupa (Avatar icon in sheep’s clothing)
Hell yeah.

350. Rear View Mirror - June 6, 2008

Thanks, Paul. Looking forward to reading more from you and others who were there at that time.

351. Elena - June 7, 2008

Yes, thank you for talking. It is surprising that it started to happen so early and no one has been able to stop it for so many years getting darker and sicker as it runs along without constraints.

Looking back it is clear that it was already rotten by the time I joined eighteen years ago but they did a great job of hiding the facts and letting people run along with their own combustion so that no one could really hold the Fellowship responsible but it is responsible. It is not about blaming, little Suzy, it is about responsibility which is a whole different thing. If you say you’re a School of Consciousness and you’re really a brothel you are responsible and you’ll have to pay sooner or later. In fact it is already beginning to pay.

It is not about revenge either, the fact that people can take hold of their stupidity and process it does not mean that the Fellowship or anyone involved cannot be held responsible. There are objective damages and the stupidity of people is taken into account together with the damages.

352. Elena - June 7, 2008

In fact, they wouldn’t let one come to Isis, Renaissance, immediately so that by the time one came a year or more later one was already tied in with one’s own combustion and interpretation of the work. It was probably the richest period for me, I do not regret it, but that doesn’t make the Fellowship any less of a fraud.

Are they still not allowing people to come from centers?

353. wakeuplittlesuzywakeup - June 7, 2008

#348: That reminds me of a funny or not so funny incident. When I left the Fellowship I had a young son that was still going to events on the property. One day I got permission to go onto the property to pick him up and promptly ran out of gas on the way out. It caused quite a stir when it took me longer that usual to come back out, and the person that finally helped me was quite uncomfortable about doing so. I remember at the time I found it humorous but it’s really kind of sad.

354. ton - June 7, 2008
355. veronicapoe - June 7, 2008

Paul

“I joined a discussion group for $35 bucks a month which gave me access to (me a 17 y/o kid) doctors, lawyers, Ph.D.s, an amazing professor of physics and really down-to-earth good folks like Rosemary Mac Donald and Don Burrell… We were studying Gurdjieff and Ouspensky’s ideas. Not Roberts. Somewhere around 72 and early 73 the meetings became more formal and RB began to concentrate the cult stuff, weird prediction.

I have read all of the Via del Sol Journals beginning Vol. I, #1 in 1971. Top dog was announcing that he was the Avatar of the Age in 1971. “It simply means that I suffer consciously the most.” “I am not Christ, but I assume that I prepare for him.”

Did you know that C Influence has indicated that Dixon Hill Road is named after the famous psychic, Jeanne Dixon? That students can receive military deferments by becoming ministers here? By the way, do not try to help people who are suicidal. They do not belong here. They will drag you down like a drowning person tries to drag down someone who tries to save them. It is good when weak students leave as they are weight. It used to bother me, but now it’s like a useless object being gone. 1971.

356. ton - June 7, 2008

“Malignant narcissism is related to narcissistic regression in infancy, in which the infant sees themself as the “center of the world.” Whereas most infants grow out of this stage, the malignant narcissist is thought to be trapped in this period throughout their lifetime.”

357. paulshabram - June 7, 2008

351. veronicapoe

I remember collecting “dingbats” and different sun faces for the Via del Sol in the 72 time frame. If I was there for ’71 it would have been late in the year. For ’71 my exposure would have been limited to a small group and before I officially joined. There was more concern about the look of Via del Sol, and whether on not your “angle of thought” got published than the insidious content. For sure, the foundation for being a cult was being laid from the beginning, I am not arguing that. RB came out of a cult and patterned his livelihood after it. He was experimenting with what worked and what didn’t (I’ll bet he is still doing that). He was probably just aping Alex Horn to begin with.

You also have to understand the context of the Bay Area at the end of the “Summer of Love”. Most of the members had been or were concurrently in other groups, maybe several (EST, Hare Krishnas, Zen Center in SF, or the 13 y/o”divine” kid from India whose name escapes me, and not to mention the “Jesus Freaks”). it was kinda like Myspace or Facebook is today. Gurus, Ashrams, sort of social networks. Hey the Beatles were doing it. These groups might have been considered nascent cults. But not all evolved into cults.

I remember the Avatar statements and I remember the discussions about it. There were hundreds of people all over the place proclaiming themselves “Avatar” (of coarse Robert had it on the license plate of his new 350 SL). How do we know this is an Avatar? How do we know he isn’t? What the hell is an Avatar? I remember that discussion at Sambo’s and in meetings in Carmel (even before I joined). Like this blog series, it was a central question. But as I asked in a previous post: “Wouldn’t be something if we DID KNOW A higher being? The possibility was irresistible to some of us.”

I guess the nickname you give RB reveals a fundamental difference in our view of him. You have come to think of him as “Top Dog” like an alpha male. I have come to think of him more as “Bottom Feeder”.

A cult doesn’t develop overnight. It evolves from within.

Consider this article, it really happened.
http://thesituationist.wordpress.com/2007/02/16/when-good-people-do-evil-–-part-i/

358. paulshabram - June 7, 2008

A quote from Part II of the link I posted in 353:

“The most dramatic instances of directed behavior change and “mind control” are not the consequence of exotic forms of influence such as hypnosis, psychotropic drugs, or “brainwashing.” They are, rather, the systematic manipulation of the most mundane aspects of human nature over time in confining settings. Motives and needs that ordinarily serve us well can lead us astray when they are aroused, amplified, or manipulated by situational forces that we fail to recognize as potent. This is why evil is so pervasive. Its temptation is just a small turn away, a slight detour on the path of life, a blur in our sideview mirror, leading to disaster.”

Philip Zimbardo Situational Sources of Evil

359. Elena - June 7, 2008

No dignity
No trust
No integrity
No solidarity
No love
No consideration
No compassion
No gratitude
No consciousness
No conscience
Cult
Dogma
Idolatry
Favouritism

————-

Thanks Veronicapoe for your work and research. As true as it may be that he was foul game from the beginning, it does matter to me that I cannot believe in evil per se or as a matter of fact. Why don’t I when no matter how much it is exposed people continue to believe it is O.K.?

Perhaps because in looking at Girard, who I think is no less deluded than Robert, at least Robert is working for himself, it is clear that no matter how badly the thing started twisting from a very young age, a completely different setting would change the position radically. Since we don’t have the power to change the setting I have no hope but no less compassion.

I once read in my father’s writings: “people do not love those who they want but those who tread and grind the same mud, perceive and entertain the same life…..”

If I were to blame Robert and Girard for whom they are I would have to blame a whole Nation and what is the point of that? Perhaps a whole civilization? I once saw a four year old child, carrying a one year old child by a light in the stree,t at night, on their own and asking for money and it got stamped in my memory like if they’d hit me with a hammer and yet it was perfect in its own way.

Sometimes I am tempted to walk out of here and let people be. To know so clearly that people do not become sociopaths because they were born that way but that a given situation landed them more deeply in it each day of their lives, is not easier to carry than slamming the door and condemning them. Or is it? Either way, a solution ought to be found, why can it not be helped?

I am convinced that they are victims as much as everybody else. They just don’t know how to walk out of it after forty years of turning around the same spot. How could they when they are just humans doing what seemed possible, what others kept agreeing to? Victims, no matter how responsible they also happen to be. Bad choices at the wrong time for sure but what do you do with this kind of people? Is it possible to just walk out and turn one’s back on it and never look back because one will turn to salt? If that were possible why are you still looking after twenty years? Thirty years? I don’t want to be looking back at the same thing in ten years, I could not bear it and leaving it behind seems equally impossible.

How do you deal with the children that grew up dancing ballet and waiting for Christmas to come so that they could go and look at the tree in the galleria? And yet they too confess they are glad their parents are leaving before they are eighteen when they won’t be allowed in?

Who are we anyway?

Hopefully we’ll become worthy enough to still stand with dignity when it is finally over.

Do you out there have any idea how delicate this all is? How much care and love and attention these people need? They would not be so vulnerable if they had gone to war. If the right help is impossible maybe I’ll let it be. Is there no one out there who can really help? is there a conscious school anywhere that could come and help the people in this cult?

360. paulshabram - June 7, 2008

Elena 355
“Do you out there have any idea how delicate this all is?” YES
“How much care and love and attention these people need?” YES
“They would not be so vulnerable if they had gone to war.” MORE SO
“If the right help is impossible maybe I’ll let it be.” IT’S NOT SO DON’T
“Is there no one out there who can really help?” YES
“is there a conscious school anywhere that could come and help the people in this cult?” I DOUBT IT VERY MUCH

361. Yesri Baba - June 7, 2008

Pretention and bullshit.. mmmm.. pass the gravy.

362. Yesri Baba - June 7, 2008

oops. I got egg on my face. Lots of posts today. I was reading along and
bruce made me laugh at 335 so I was goofin with him. My comment was not directed at any particular postings.

All this talk about the old days brought up a memory of when I first came to the (funny) farm in 1976. Robert would come up to the lodge and slouch in his little throne with his pasty palm cupping half of his semi-bored ‘world 12’ face as he watched new ‘students’ walk back and forth in front of him. He would then proclaim what ‘body type’ and ‘center of gravity’ they should ‘work’ with. Then it was off to the races… .
“Has Robert given you a ‘center of gravity’ or ‘body type’ yet?”
“Has Robert told you what your ‘chief feature’ is yet?”
Then there was the ‘it’ exercise. Refering to oneself as it instead of I.
On my first visit he was out on the patio eating a bowl of strawberries and bananas in milk. He stood up and walked over to me, hugged me and with a big smile said “Welcome home”.

This objectifying of person coupled with the bonds of friendship and spiritual dependence are cornerstones of cult building.
These were in full bloom when I arrived.

363. Rear View Mirror - June 7, 2008

Yesri (357 and 358),
Speaking of bs and pretentiousness, at one of my first meetings in the FOF, someone said, “The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.”

Maybe that’s an old Gurdjieff quote or whatever, or Collin, or maybe it was one of the eminent literary geniuses of the 18th century, and maybe in a different context it would make sense to me… but I never cared. I didn’t accept it or deny it. I just figured if X said it, there must be some truth to it, and I let it go.

But you know… Good intentions are just good intentions. And good intentions mean everything.

What a guilt trip the Fellowship of Friends is. Guilt is handy for creating fear. And fear is handy for asserting one’s control over people. And asserting one’s control over people is handy for starting a cult. And starting a cult is handy for all sorts of sexual and psychological abuse.

I find it ironic that Burton suggested we avoid using the word “love,” and yet he somehow felt privileged enough to use it every day in those little cards. Pretty audacious of him. 😉

——-
Paul (353),
In post 351, Veronicapoe does a great job of exposing the Fellowship of Friends for what it was in 1971. She states her point very concisely and convincingly. Personal accounts from that time are always interesting and appreciated, but I find the words from Robert Burton himself even more telling.

I remember mentioning to him ages ago that I found some old copies of the Via Del Sol Journals, and I mentioned how interesting they were.

But rather than nod appreciatively, he was visibly embarrassed by the fact that I had found them, and he was even apologetic. Why? Because his own words exposed him for what he was, and he knew it.

364. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - June 7, 2008

291, 294, 299 and 332 are newly moderated.

365. the Esoteric Sheik of Inner Confusion - June 7, 2008

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