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Fellowship Of Friends/Pathway To Presence Discussion – Part 95 July 15, 2010

Posted by fofblogmoderator in Uncategorized.
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Welcome to the newest page of the Fellowship of Friends/Pathway To Presence Discussion.

For recent pages from the blog go here

For previous parts of the discussion please click on home and scroll down, or move to the Fellowship of Friends Discussionblog, 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 to the Greater Fellowship community 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.

To visit “Pathway To Presence”, the newly created web site for recruiting new members to the Fellowship; http://www.pathwaytopresence.org

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

To access the Online Petition: http://www.PetitionOnline.com/djindjin/petition.html

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.

At the Moderator’s discretion, excessive abuse, personal attacks, taking up too much space, as well as deliberate attempts to unmask people taking part in the discussion will result in a warning followed by a ban or a leave of absence from the discussion.

Participants require 1 moderated comment before they can start communicating in real-time. (ie. if you are new to the discussion, your comment will appear about 1 day after it has been posted, any subsequent comments will appear instantaneously).

To visit the site created by Unoanimo:http://fellowshipoffriends.wordpress.com/2008/01/20/res-ipsa-loquitur/

Comments

1. fofblogmoderator - July 15, 2010

Worth Repeating

254. Jomo Piñata – July 15, 2010 [Edit]
We were “founded” forty years ago by someone who claimed to understand Fourth Way teachings of George Gurdjieff and Peter Ouspensky, but who admitted early on that he had actually never read Gurdjieff’s writings.

We deceptively advertised for decades by placing bookmarks depicting oil paintings of these luminaries, together with the words, “Gurdjieff Ouspensky Centres,” in the books of these authors. For many years only the name “Gurdjieff Ouspensky Centres” appeared on the bookmarks, while “The Fellowship of Friends, Inc.,” which is the actual corporate name, did not appear.

In 1977 the founder claimed that we were the only people who had the right to teach the system at that time (http://bit.ly/byOjMf), and that our group was the greatest mystery of the Twentieth Century. However, the Twentieth Century has been succeeded by the Twenty-First, so we have recently ditched any claim to be following the Fourth Way.

In the mid-1980s we drafted canons (http://bit.ly/bpRGnj) modeled after those of the Catholic Church, in an attempt to hoodwink governmental authorities into believing that we were a genuine religion and should pay as little tax as possible. This effort was only partially successful, as California refused museum status to the founder’s residence (noting it was not a “museum,” but a “warehouse[] where art [was] stored)(http://bit.ly/cXPmVc), and the neo-Catholic veneer of authenticity was abandoned as lightly as it was adopted. Later the founder commented that his new civilization would not be founded on “Judeo-Christian principles,” and that he hadn’t decided yet what principles it would be founded on.

Today we appear to embrace the practical wisdom of all great spiritual traditions, but the truth is that we have no enduring allegiance or principle except self-abasement and subordination to the founder’s sexual predations and inexhaustible need for narcissistic supply. Everything is fungible here, including each of us. Won’t you join us?

2. nige - July 15, 2010

With regard to post 1, last paragraph…..

The psychopathy of Robert Earl Burton will not get any more containable and is likely to become worse. I have found that, with my mood disorder, that that is no easier to handle as the years roll on and can only be containable through psychiatric help, medication (which needs to be changed every few years) and a great deal of self-understanding in the light of circumstances in which one finds oneself. It is probably REB’s psychiatric problems,made out to be strengths,that make way for his ‘charismatic charm and attractiveness’. However, I always found him a negative and overbearing presence to be around…..Nigel.

3. WhaleRider - July 15, 2010

Role of the Founding Minister:

Canon 1.3-Sources of the Teaching

“The Teaching of the Fellowship is principally oral…”

~The Canons of the Fellowship of Friends
January 1, 1986

Yeah, they got that right. I never knew Burton to give hand jobs.

4. deludedbob - July 16, 2010

All in all, the new Fellowship of Friends recruiting site @ http://www.livingpresence.com is imo, a truly chilling example of deceit.
From one page at living presence;

“The aim of ‘myths’ and ‘symbols’ was to reach man’s higher centers, to transmit to him ideas inaccessible to the intellect and to transmit them in such forms as would exclude the possibility of false interpretations.”

G.I. Gurdjieff

And this endorses the ravings of a madman who gave us among his many turds of wisdom, the true interpretation of Rhino poop!!!!!

Just consider the true nature of the Fellowship, several thousand people sharing the same consensus reality, requiring everyone to bypass unsettling insights of Burton’s and consequently their own insanity. Mad is the new sane.

5. X-ray - July 16, 2010

3. WhaleRider – July 15, 2010

‘Yeah, they got that right. I never knew Burton to give hand jobs.’

I’ve heard he likes it too.

6. Best of the Blog - July 16, 2010

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Critical Mass
on August 1, 2007 at 11:56 pm

The orgies, with viagra, go back four or five years ago at least. Robert Burton was very grateful to C Influence that they had given him three Russians who would have sex with him every Sunday evening. Robert said that it was the highlight of his week, and he looked forward to it all week.

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7. Best of the Blog - July 16, 2010

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Critical Mass
on August 1, 2007 at 11:56 pm

When Adriana D died suddenly at the Mad Hatter, Robert commented that she had been dancing to jazz, “which we have been told not to do, so C Influence cut her down just like that.”

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8. Best of the Blog - July 16, 2010

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Veronicapoe
on August 2, 2007 at 1:05 am

215/Critical Mass

When Adriana D died suddenly at the Mad Hatter, Robert commented that she had been dancing to jazz, “which we have been told not to do, so C Influence cut her down just like that.”

This is exactly like the claim that Raymond Kennedy’s death in 1980 was caused by his disobeying the swimming exercise. Deliberate fear induction to increase obedience.

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Innernaut
Critical Mass, #215:

“When Adriana D died suddenly at the Mad Hatter, Robert commented that she had been dancing to jazz, “which we have been told not to do, so C Influence cut her down just like that.””

What an absolutely clueless dork.

Robert, that is, not Adriana.

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Vena
on August 2, 2007 at 4:45 pm

Re: Post #237 from Elena about the Theatron

. . .The Fellowship knows the county building regulations but intentionally decided to ignore them and go ahead with this project without the required permits, inspections, fees, applications, meetings, approvals, etc. knowing that there would be penalties and fines and requirements to meet county codes which means additional and unnecessary expense to the membership. This is typical of the arrogant attitude the Fellowship has towards “life” in general and even worse, the total insensitivity to the financial burdens placed on the gullible membership. This is nothing new. It has been the pattern of the Fellowship of Friends all throughout its history. Grandiose plans, that cost many times the actual cost with the end result being unfinished buildings, never-built buildings, aborted projects and a bizarre pastiche of pretentious structures that members are subtly indoctrinated to believe are wondrous achievements higher than anything possible by “life people”. The attitude of the FOF and Robert Burton is one of pure arrogance and shameless insensitivity to the burdens placed on the pitifully naive membership.

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2b
on August 1, 2007 at 10:08 pm

Innernaut wrote in #206: “Now I just try to take things simply. I am who I am, and try to accept that.”

. . . We’re constantly second-guessing ourselves… and this fits right in to the idea of the “lower self” that is being promoted so heavily in the FoF, and many other related concepts such as the king of clubs and so on — an idea that we should “watch out” for anything we’re thinking, feeling, or doing.

But it’s precisely this second-guessing that keeps us from being in the present, enjoying our lives, and appreciating what we are experiencing right now.

“For all the day our eyes view things unrespected.”

Miles Barth, (who was called Miles “Brighton” as a member of the Fellowship over 20 years ago), talked about this idea in one of the last meetings that he led. He said as long as we believe that we “should” be somewhere else, we can’t be present. He said that it’s one of the most important ideas to remember as long as we have a goal to be present.

Now, having said that, it could very well be that “where we are” is running full-speed for the exit. We can be present to that as well — not doubt it, not disbelieve it, not fear it.

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Innernaut
on August 1, 2007 at 10:29 pm
2b, #209:

“Something else related to this is that it’s hard to accept “where we are” and “what we are doing” at any given moment, as well as “who we are” There’s this constant, nagging thought that, “Perhaps I should be somewhere else, doing something else. Maybe I shouldn’t be here.””

I think it was John Lennon that said, “Life is what happens when we’re making other plans.”

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dick moron
on August 4, 2007 at 7:40 pm

#353 Confused

“What if Robert is indeed conscious? If he really is conscious then all our experiences connected to the functions (including emotional (our hurt feelings), intellectual (absurd teaching) and instinctive function (sex, money etc.)) are irrelevant.”

This “what if” type of logic is the great barrier to individual spiritual freedom that keeps cults/religions full of followers. Take your question and replace “Robert” with Pope, Mullah, Ayatollah, Church Elder, Jim Jones, Pat Robertson, Rabbi and so on. It’s all the same superstition and fear. What if, there is a guy with horns and a pitch fork waiting for you in Hell if you don’t put the donation in the collection basket every Sunday at church? What if the mothership from another galaxy is going to land and take back all the faithful to paradise when the earth is destroyed?

Sheep and cattle are too stupid to question why they are following the herd into the slaughterhouse, but humans have a logical brain, and, more importantly, a conscience. This can make it tougher to control them. Fear of, and an attraction to the unknown is as good as any cattle-prod to keep the human herd in line.

You will never know the truth of RB’s level of being. But do you want to stay with him out of fear and uncertainty? Sometimes ones instincts (king of clubs) is not such a bad thing. If your fish smells bad, it’s a good decision to not eat it. There is a reason that shit stinks.

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Vena
on August 4, 2007 at 8:04 pm

“What if Robert is indeed conscious? If he really is conscious then all our experiences connected to the functions (including emotional (our hurt feelings), intellectual (absurd teaching) and instinctive function (sex, money etc.)) are irrelevant.”

I had this same question and as a previous poster said, it is one of the last “boogie men” to try and hold you. All I have read about consciousness, as well as what I have personally experienced, includes conscience. It is clear to most of us, in and out and on the fence, that there is something seriously wrong with the FOF and with Robert especially. If Robert is conscious he has crystallized incorrectly and that is all the more reason to get away as fast as you can. Choose anyone from history or from our contemporary world that you admire for his/her virtues and decent behavior and then compare his/her lifestyle and actions to Robert Burtons and you will have the answer.

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SBeMore
on August 5, 2007 at 12:46 am

Some thoughts on leaving the FOF:

At first, there was the intense fear of “going to hell”, of “losing all that I had gained and more”, of being “cut-off from higher influence”. At first it was a visceral reaction, a physical sense of fear, a heightened anxiety. At the symphony I would be terrified that I might see students (I rarely did). However, I gradually noticed that my verifications were still mine, and I found a fresh ability to examine and let go of assumptions I had adopted but were not really verifications. I don’t really use the words “C-influence” or “gods” much any more, but the world is certainly magical, beautiful, and very interesting.

I came to understand that my memories were still mine, and that experiences that I appreciated were still mine. I like to invite friends to dinner, to cook all day for them, to sit long into the night and talk with those I love. This experience does not belong to the FOF. I like to play the violin, to be one of thirty or sixty people making music in an orchestra, to dance intimately in a string quartet. This experience does not belong to the FOF. I like to hear others’ perspectives about me even when we disagree, and I like to be able to mentor, assist, remind others. This experience does not belong to the FOF. I like to work together with others, to set out to accomplish some task together. This experience does not belong to the FOF.

I missed (and miss) my friends terribly. One day I had dozens of close friends, and hundreds of interesting acquaintances, and the next day – all gone (except for my husband who left the FOF several years earlier). I was shunned. One day I had access to pre-arranged social experiences at centers or at The Farm/Renaissance/Apollo, I could travel in Europe and stay with interesting people, and the next day – all gone. It takes more effort to connect socially but when I can, it’s mine.

I had a strong desire to be ordinary. I wanted to let go of trying to be better than others, and I wanted to see other people as living their lives in the best way they know how. I wanted to truly see them and connect with them without assuming I knew what they were about and what mattered to them. In moments of weakness I might find myself trying to look as though I was remembering myself – and of course this act (somewhat removed, intense eye contact, a bit too stiff, smug) is just plain odd to people without FOF conditioning.

I had (and still have) dreams. Almost always I am in a social gathering – a party with students and RB. People are dressed up and milling about. RB calls to me from across the room, or one of the FOF leaders sees me and looks menacingly at me – and all of a sudden I realize that I haven’t made any donations in a long, long time. I am very aware of myself. Sometimes I panic and leave abruptly; sometimes I smile and observe. These anxiety dreams are similar to the old final exam nightmares (I find myself in a classroom with a test on the desk and I realize I forgot to go to class all semester). My husband has them too.

Hope this helps someone out there in blog land.

SBeMore

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Bruce
on August 5, 2007 at 1:29 am

379 confused

Maybe this will help. Definition of a sociopath:

“A sociopath is mainly identified by there being something very wrong with a person’s conscience. They either 1) have a conscience with “holes” in it, 2)they don’t seem to have one at all or 3) they are able to completely neutralize their sense of conscience into a perspective that they aren’t doing anything wrong.
One thing is for sure: Sociopaths only care about themselves and only see themselves as being “real” or truly human. Everybody and everything outside of themselves are twisted in their mind into mere objects to be used to achieve personal fulfillment.
A sociopath often believes that they are doing nothing wrong or doing something greatly good, due to their egocentricity and grandiose sense of self-worth. They will cold-bloodedly take what they want and do as they please at any expense of anyone in their lives; predators who satisfy their lust for power and control through superficial charm, manipulation, intimidation, and violence.”

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9. Renald - July 16, 2010

If it looks like bullshit and smells like bullshit, it probably will taste like bullshit. In hindsight, it seems incredible to me now that I got used to it bit by bit and eventually got to believe it was chocolate.

Not funny !

10. Renald - July 16, 2010

Well looks like What I wrote in post number 9 got scooped by the one in number 8. ……..“ You will never know the truth of RB’s level of being. But do you want to stay with him out of fear and uncertainty? Sometimes ones instincts (king of clubs) is not such a bad thing. If your fish smells bad, it’s a good decision to not eat it. There is a reason that shit stinks……“

Cheers !!

11. rock that boat - July 16, 2010

I found this poem in an old Meher Baba book.
Very timely it seems, an old friend and neighbor died last week,
his sick bed became his deathbed where he bravely
faced the unknown; Death

THE WATCHER

In the trees I see the storms
thrown up by the warming winter days
which beat upon my anxious window panes.
And I hear the distance tell me things
that I cannot bear without a friend

There goes the storm, the great transformer,
Sweeping through woods and through time
And everything now is out of time.
The landscape lies open like a bible chapter,
All endless, impact and weight.

How small it is, with which we wrestle,
What wrestles with us, how immense!
If only we would, like the things do,
Allow the great storm so to overcome us,
We too would grow strong
And be beyond names.

What we can defeat is small
And the success itself makes us small.
The extraordinary and eternal
Are not for us to bend.

This is the angel who appeared
To the wrestlers of the old testament.
When, in the struggle, his opponent’s sinews
like metal bent, under the angels fingers
They were the chords of deepest melodies.

Whoever is beaten by this angel
-who often refuses to fight-
comes away straight and strengthened
and great from that harsh hand

that smoothed him into shape.
Winning no longer lures him.
For him growing is; to be more deeply defeated
By ever greater things.

12. Josiane - July 16, 2010

4. deludedbob
“The aim of ‘myths’ and ‘symbols’ was to reach man’s higher centers, to transmit to him ideas inaccessible to the intellect and to transmit them in such forms as would exclude the possibility of false interpretations.”

G.I. Gurdjieff

How ironical then that Robert Burton does nothing but EXPLAIN in WORDS all these newly found myths and symbols (the 30 work I’s, the Sequence, Rhino poop, the square, Jacob’s ladder, six fingers and toes in paintings, thunderstorm over the San Francisco skyline…) Isn’t that precisely the use of the intellect with its guaranteed false interpretations?

13. deludedbob - July 16, 2010

12. Josiane – exactly!

The guy is totally bonkers, fourty years pretending to be something he’s not. He’s unhinged now and slipping further into delusion with advancing age. It’s now at the level of macabre entertainment as the needy true believers, congratulate, applaud and condone insanity.

14. nige - July 16, 2010

12 Josiane

His aim, as a sufferer from Narcissistic Personality Disorder, is to keep in check his followers with this methodology, pretending that he is giving them something (that they can, in the same fashion, interpret for themselves) rather than thrusting them forward and outward into their own being and thus make them reliant on Their Own Selves, which, of course, would run the risk of their leaving the FOF…..Nigel.

15. Yo - July 16, 2010

Forget the fourth way, the sequence, and everything else. Here’s ‘THE’ most important idea in the FOF:

Leaving the FOF will lead to spiritual doom.
Remaining will ensure salvation.

Think how completely bizarre and idiotic it is to:
1) consider that idea
2) believe it
3) believe that you’ve sure about it, and
4) build your life around it.

16. nige - July 17, 2010

From “Ulysses” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

“Come, my friends,
‘Tis not too late to seek a newer world.
Push off, and sitting well in order smite
The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
Of all the western stars, until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
And see the great Achilles whom we knew.
Tho’ much is taken, much abides; and tho’
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”

17. Opus 111 - July 17, 2010

David Brooks in yet another description of what ails Burton and a good proportion of people:

http://tinyurl.com/2wdxm6n

18. nige - July 17, 2010

17 Opus 111

The important part from that url…..

“The narcissistic person is marked by a grandiose self-image, a constant need for admiration, and a general lack of empathy for others. He is the keeper of a sacred flame, which is the flame he holds to celebrate himself.

There used to be theories that deep down narcissists feel unworthy, but recent research doesn’t support this. Instead, it seems, the narcissist’s self-directed passion is deep and sincere.

His self-love is his most precious possession. It is the holy center of all that is sacred and right. He is hypersensitive about anybody who might splatter or disregard his greatness. If someone treats him slightingly, he perceives that as a deliberate and heinous attack. If someone threatens his reputation, he regards this as an act of blasphemy. He feels justified in punishing the attacker for this moral outrage.

And because he plays by different rules, and because so much is at stake, he can be uninhibited in response. Everyone gets angry when they feel their self-worth is threatened, but for the narcissist, revenge is a holy cause and a moral obligation, demanding overwhelming force.”

19. Best of the Blog - July 17, 2010

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Brain Police
on August 9, 2007 at 8:05 pm

I’ve often wondered whether RB (or “Arby”) intentionally presents bizarre and incredible “teachings,” not to confuse the logical mind for some evolutionary end, but because, perversely, the more absurd the teaching, the more energy some will exert to justify it. That is, some will stay, not in spite of the crap, but because of it. If he continued to stress the Great Books approach, people might get bored, or buy a set for themselves, or consider that they can get that sort of teaching in a lot of places for a lot less money. But some people will react to a truly ridiculous teaching by telling themselves it MUST mean something really, really important, because there’s no other way to interpret it–except, of course, as gibberish, and people don’t like to feel they’re paying through the nose for gibberish, and so will reject that possibility.

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David B.
on August 10, 2007 at 8:54 pm

I think that probably the reason RB instituted the ‘no laughing’ excercise is because laughter, humor, ridicule, satire, joking, kidding around, etc. are very effective ways of puncturing the pomposity and pretense of the Fellowship. Kid Shelleen’s and Bass’s stories illustrate this well.

Reading that series of edicts from RB via Linda, each one increasingly oppressive and creepy, made me so grateful to be out of the humorless hell hole that is the FOF.

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Skeptical Optimist
on August 14, 2007 at 12:51 am

[Note: He’s responding to another page filled with several dozen sarcastic rebuttals, denials, disagreements, debunking, and scoffing.]

BTW, it was just about a month ago that Ni_k Spa_ldi_g chased Howard Carter, Siddiq and Golb off the blog. Didn’t he say to take a month off?

Of course, other members of the tag team have filled the void, although it looks like “Just Me” may have finished his/her stint, so I guess there will be someone new (assuming all these tags do not, in fact, refer to the same one or two individuals).

Just keeping track over here. Bye for now.

JoelF

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Lust for Life
on August 18, 2007 at 11:40 pm

I could hardly believe this but if you are in the FOF, you can have the privilege of having Robert Burton in your house for breakfast, lunch or dinner, and it will only cost you $4,400…that is over £2,000! How mad is that?!?!?!

From the fof website (if you do not read all of it make sure you get the first line of the last paragraph…it cracks me up!):

“Hosting Events with Robert
Are you interested in helping Robert raise $4,400 for the building projects and creating a wonderfully memorable occasion in your home?
If you have been thinking about purchasing an event with Robert in your home, but were wondering what this would involve, let us explain.
You can choose to host a breakfast, tea or reception in your home and once you sign up, you will have the full support of Isis specialist octave teams to help design and run the event. Your role will be to recruit your friends to attend the event and help you cover your commitment for the cost.

Our aim is to allow you to enjoy the wonderful states created by hosting Robert in your home, without the burden of worrying about the details of the event. We will provide flowers, food prepared by Galleria chefs, servers, tableware, a photographer and cameraman. The event planning team will meet with you and plan the event in detail, covering:
• Placement of furniture
• Suggestions of which of your own vases or sculptures can be used and where
• Designating a parking area
• Deciding where guests will enter from
• Deciding where Robert will sit
• Deciding how servers will enter and whether kitchen screening is required
• Deciding the location of the camera
• Deciding the location for photographs with Robert
• Recommending extra lighting if necessary
The event planning team makes every effort to realize your wishes, whilst also considering Robert. They work very hard to make the event run smoothly so that you can relax and reap many glorious moments of presence from your special event.
As a beautiful reminder of the occasion, you will receive a photo album of pictures from the event and other offerings that recognize you for your generous support.
If you would like to sign up to host an event at your home with Robert, please call the Auction Team at xxxx or e-mail us at xxxx for enquiries.
Payment Details:
Here are some considerations when choosing which type of event you would like to host:
• Breakfast ($4,400) – usually scheduled for Thursday morning ->
Robert is quite open to accommodate your needs in terms of the number of guests to share the costs. You can divide the total amount according to the number of seated guests (from 14 total to 28 total) and the standing guests (around 15). It depends more on the size of your dining room. It is also not impossible to turn the living room into the dining area. Many people respond well with smaller events as it has become quite rare in the Galleria.

Breakfast at x’s
• Tea ($4,400) – usually scheduled for Friday afternoon ->
the number of seated guests is often around 20 or 22 including Robert and Asaf. The standing guests vary according to the size of your living room.

Tea at Pyramid Press
• Reception ($4,400) – usually scheduled for Sunday early evening ->
the number of guests is often between 44 and 50.

(no Dinner Events available at the present moment)

In order not to put our teacher under financial pressure, we encourage you to gather your friends’ support prior to your commitment at the Auction. The Auction Team is here to help you with this pre-purchasing planning. In terms of the actual money collection from your friends, if you provide the guest list with the price to be charged, the Auction office can help you collect the money at the entrance of the event. In any case, the payment is considered due at the Auction or the event. In a general sense, to commit for an event means that the hosts are willing to cover eventual monetary differences or advance payments for guests that may need time payments. It is mostly quite manageable with a little planning and help from a few close friends. You can also organize as many raffles as needed.”

I earn about £2,000 a month, and people are paying him that to have a meal in their house?! MADNESS!
Love from Lust. x

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20. veramente - July 17, 2010

15 Yo
a great summary Yo!
It can be put in a daily card with signature: evil, Burton

21. nige - July 17, 2010

A ‘slant’ on a theme…..

“In a book published in 1989, The Managerial Mystique, (Abraham) Zaleznik says that ”what Taylor proposed through his system of management lies at the core of how modern managers are supposed to think and act. The principle is rationality. The aim is efficiency.” Most importantly, Zaleznik believed that managers and leaders differ in terms of their personalities. Taking his lead from Taylor, Zaleznik describes managers as being cold efficiency machines who ”adopt impersonal, if not passive, attitudes towards goals.” Further, ”Managers see themselves as conservators and regulators of an existing order of affairs.” He tells us that ”managers’ tactics appear flexible: on the one hand they negotiate and bargain; on the other, they use rewards, punishments, and other forms of coercion.” So, managers are only apparently flexible and they are coercive, even manipulative in Zaleznik’s eyes. In his 1977 article Zaleznik makes exactly the same claim, stating that: ”…one often hears subordinates characterize managers as inscrutable, detached and manipulative.”

Zaleznik would have us believe that, while managers seek activity with people, they ”maintain a low level of emotional involvement in those relationships.” They also apparently ”lack empathy”. Zaleznik expands on the emotional theme in The Managerial Mystique by telling us that managers ”operate within a narrow range of emotions. This emotional blandness when combined with the preoccupation on process, leads to the impression that managers are inscrutable, detached and even manipulative.

It is not clear what evidence Zaleznik has for these damning charges. He seems to be doing nothing more than extrapolating from Fredrick Taylor’s conception of management without ever asking himself whether management as a function is committed to Taylor’s characterization of it. Starting with Taylor’s worship of machine-like efficiency, Zaleznik has tarred all managers for all time with the same brush.

Zaleznik believes that leaders are creative and interested in substance while managers are only interested in process – how things are done, not what. For Zaleznik, ”leaders, who are more concerned with ideas, relate in more intuitive and empathetic ways.” No doubt leaders are more interested in ideas than how they get implemented, but there is no basis whatsoever for calling leaders more empathetic than managers.”

22. nige - July 18, 2010

Just so that REB and his money-slinging group-therapy should think rightly (fat chance!)…..

“The self by its nature knows itself only. For lack of experience whatever it perceives it takes to be itself. Battered, it learns to look out and to live alone. When right behaviour becomes normal, a powerful inner urge makes it seek its source. The candle of the body is lighted and all becomes clear and bright.” – Nisargadatta

Does REB exhibit right behaviour?
Has REB become normal?
Is REB a ‘candle of light’ to be held up as an example?

23. nige - July 18, 2010

From – Paul Levy-“Awaken in the Dream”…..

“What we don’t remember and make conscious, we often act out, even evoking and dreaming up the seemingly external field around us to collude with us so as to give living shape and form to our inner process. Whatever we repress, deny, or split-off from, we tend to unconsciously and compulsively re-enact in the present, as if we are unknowingly trying to complete an incomplete process.”

24. Best of the Blog - July 18, 2010

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Anna
on August 6, 2007 at 5:59 pm

There have been many postings which touch on the subjects of abuse and transformation, these are area’s in which as a student I have experienced a lot of overlap and confusion. First a true story about a couple, picture this…

The point of view of the ‘abused’
The Teacher has asked your partner to dinner, you are happy and excited for him. Some friends invite you to a gathering, because he would like the car it’s decided that he will pick you up when he’s ready. At the appointed hour he does not arrive.

Knowing that he won’t want to come in you go outside and wait on the veranda. It is deep winter and snow and rain have been falling intermittently. You wait for a while and when the cold is unbearable you go back in. Some time later you hear a horn hooting in the distance. You jump up, say goodbye to your friends again, and leave. Outside the rain is falling heavily… He’s still hooting and flashing his lights. You wonder why he doesn’t seem to want to come up the drive to collect you; perhaps he doesn’t want to get the car dirty, but you would prefer not to give it much thought? You step off the veranda and the slush pours over the sides of your evening shoes and up to your ankles. It doesn’t matter you think. They are just shoes.

It’s hard to find your way to the car in the dark, the boundaries between the path and various abysses have been wiped out by eddies of mud and melting snow, and sharp shrubs tear up suddenly. As you wade and slip, the hooting and flashing continues. The panic that had set in earlier is beginning to master you. When you finally reach the car you collapse in managing to smile nervously. But the atmosphere is thick, black. He recoils from you ,your clothes are sopping wet and there’s mud and twigs up to your knees; you are concerned about soiling the car. You ask nervously:
“How was it? Did the Teacher speak to you?”
“Why did you keep me waiting so long?” he snaps.
You try to explain, your words are jumbled and at the end you manage squeak “…and why are you angry?”
He turns in the driver’s seat, the darkness of his rage is almost radiant, his fist hits you in the cheek and eye, your shoulder thuds against the car door as you crumple.

As the stars subside you wonder what will happen next. You realise the car is going very fast. He’s looking ahead unflinching. You want to get out but you don’t know where you are and it’s so black outside.

You try to divide your attention.

(Do you have a higher state? …No)

When the car stops you clamber out and go straight to the bathroom. You don’t run because you know he will then chase you. You lock the bathroom door, peel off your sodden clothes and stand there trembling. You try to divide your attention.

(Do you have a higher state? …No)

He asks to come in. He starts to beg. He says he’s sorry, he says it was a mistake, a test for our relationship.

This is the man for whom you have pined. This is the man for whom you gave up everything. This is the match made in heaven. You decide to ‘transform’.

(Do you have a higher sate? …No)

“You must tell no one” he says. “We must work this out between ourselves”. The next day you your face is blown up like a balloon and your eye hardly shows at all. It’s the Christmas holidays, you are visitors, there are many events but you stay at home in the bedroom hiding, checking in the mirror as the eye goes from red to purple to black to green, to yellow.

He is kept busy, the Teacher is giving him a lot of attention, you are glad for him and hope that it will make him better. You don’t talk about the incident… He won’t, he becomes very tense, doesn’t see the need for it.

After five days you coat your face in makeup and drive with him to the Oregon house store. You wait in the car while he goes inside. An acquaintance comes over ‘Are you alright she says?’ you look away from her and mutter ‘yes’ hoping she will go away.

You do not allow yourself any self pity. You know that others in the world have had to endure much, much worse. This is an opportunity for you to transform, to become closer to him. He will understand one day, he will learn and he will truly love you for what you have forgiven.

(Do you have a higher state? …No)

Surely you reason this is payment in advance? Or payment in retrospect?
(Maybe)

THE END
But not the end. The story repeats again and again. Strangely but maybe not so strangely, the Teacher never helped… more about that later.

The ‘abuser’
I don’t know how it goes for the abuser. With no irony intended I can only ask: When your knuckles hit the flesh of the intended do you feel the peace and resolution that you may have hoped it would bring? Is there any lasting gratification? Do you try to divide your attention?

In the shock wave that follows, in the remorse or the lack of remorse Do you experience the longed for higher centres? That miraculous place where all that you had called by your name shrinks into insignificance, where you understand all, love all unconditionally, where God’s breath breathes through everything… weaves all together?

There is also sexual abuse. Apparently this sometimes involves more planning because your goal is to make your target do something they would not otherwise wish. Depending on their age this may also be against the law. The target may need to be groomed: grooming can take years (if you have sufficient targets in the mean time you can afford this), or sometimes only a week. The target will need to be persuaded that what you long to do with them is normal, beautiful even, and very rewarding for all those involved.

If they believe they depend on you in any way you can threaten to withdraw what they believe they need. If the person is really very small you can say to them that if they tell, they will loose the only person that they feel truly safe with… truly loved by, you can threaten that Love.

I would ask you now; once you have enacted your desire do you feel relieved? Do you feel great love for the one you have taken? Do you divide your attention? Are you afraid? Do you feel a better person? Do you experience a higher state?

Do you feel that your target enjoyed the experience, or doesn’t that matter? If it’s a little person and they weep, how do you feel? Do you feel remorse? Or are you free of that? Was it for the greater good?

Friends of the ‘abused’ and the ‘abusing’
One thing I’ve noticed about abused students is that when we discover one another, we like each other, or at least there is a certain solidarity. We can talk about what we have separated from, what we have forgiven, how we have ‘transformed suffering’. We can feel that we have worked against Feminine Dominance. We understand and may even congratulate one another. We do not judge the people who hurt us too harshly, we struggle to be grateful for our play which has offered us so much opportunity for ‘transformation’.
In my experience Students who are caught in a ‘play of suffering’ (cycle of abuse) tend to avoid speaking to those who would ‘not understand’, who would not be able to transform.

The same seems to be true for ‘abusers’. They are pleased when they discover others (who the rest of society would describe as) having similar ‘failings’… at last there is solidarity. They feel relatively safe with each other, more secure. Perhaps they will even shield each other. Create environments where secrecy is preserved. Perhaps they tell each other that they are above Feminine Dominance, that they are the ones who understand the real laws of the universe. Perhaps they dream of a post apocalyptic world in which their truer longings can be freely gratified. Their enemies are not those that they ‘abuse’, but outsiders; people who would not ‘understand’.

‘Transforming’
So what was this ‘transforming’ of suffering, which I for one had been practicing for years? And had it ever brought me to the longed for Higher centres?

I think you know my answer.

Looking back at situations where I’ve felt mistreated it is very clear that I used the expression the ‘transformation of suffering’ as a buffer. Rather than be present to what was before me: pain, hurt, anger, indignation, a broken dream, and cope with the consequences of this admission, I had applied a blindfold labelled ‘transformed’. And in this darkness the dream could remain intact.

In a way I had been groomed for abuse in childhood. Every one has their story. My father ( having him self been cruelly treated) was prone to fantastic rages and the attendant violence. Often we had no idea why he was angry with us. But in a desperate bid to placate him, to maintain our dream feeling of being a ‘happy family’, we were constantly apologising and doing penance for the crimes he accused us of. When the system handed me the tool of ‘transforming suffering’ it was as easy as pie to mis-apply it.

I only really began to touch on the fringes of this subject, as I was relinquishing Robert as my teacher. Help has come from many directions… there are so many of you out there in the greater Fellowship and even on the street who know more.

One such example was my Yoga teacher. Having paid almost no attention to the health of the dreaded ‘instinctive’ centre for its life in the school I finally dragged myself to a class. After the first lesson the instructor asked me how I found it. I answered “It was Hell” he said “No, not Hell, Earth”. I asked him what I could do about the cramp I often got during the exercises and he answered
“Don’t do anything, just really, really FEEL the pain”

So, if now you are now what other people might ‘describe as the victim of sexual abuse’ and if you are uncertain about what is really happening, I would suggest trying the following. When the person ‘does their thing’ to you, try to be really, really PRESENT. This means not buffering.

If it’s a man and you would prefer that it was a woman, (or vice versa) don’t imagine that it’s a woman. Try to really, really feel with each of your senses who IS before you, try to feel your natural un-rationalised response to them. If you have to tell yourself that the person is a ‘higher being’ this is also a buffer (even if they are) because you are still adding something to the immediacy of experience. If you have to tell yourself that the person is an ‘angel’ this too is likely to be a buffer; unless of course you can feel the brush and whiteness of their feathered wings…

If you are what others (if they knew) might call an ‘abuser’ and it hurts you too sometimes… Go to someone on the outside. I suspect that you have nothing to lose.

Cannot we all honestly say that if we ever really loved a person that that Love remains despite the hurt, despite the change in the relationship? Doesn’t that same feeling arise in our heart when we think of them? Is not the only thing lost the dream that we had projected on them, the expectations, the mirage?

==========
dick moron
on August 6, 2007 at 8:12 pm

Anna #472

Dearest Anna,
Thanks for telling your story. I must say, I had heard about this when I was still in FOF. While my personal experiences with RB in the past and my observations and knowledge of RB’s excessive sexual use of other men confused me and made me doubt his integrity as a teacher or even as a human being, the knowledge of spousal violence by one of RB’s “butlers”, truly made me angry. When David would bring me a beer while I was watching sports with RB, I would often have the urge to smash the bottle over his perfectly shaped head. Of course, I never allowed these urges to be enacted. When restraint of violent urges disappears, we become criminals.

I was often punched and teased by bullies during grade school, but I learned to not seek revenge. I always tried to use the experience to understand how I was better then the bullies. I learned to ignore and avoid the bullies–not so much out of fear, it was more like walking around a pile of dog poop on the sidewalk. Merely an unpleasant minor obstacle along my chosen path.

I can hardly imagine how difficult it is when the violent abuse comes from a loved one.

Once during the short period I served as RB’s “secretaries”, I had to physically fight him off when he ignored my wishes to not have sexual contact with him. We wrestled around on the floor for several minutes and I truly did have to use all of my strength to keep him off of me. At that time he probably outweighed me by about 100 pounds, but he was mostly flab—dead weight so to speak. The interesting part, is afterwards, he was laughing and seemed to enjoy the fight.

Several weeks after that, I quit and went back to college to finish my degree. Probably one of the best decisions I have made.

So, while it is good advise to those victims of abuse to try and be present to the experience without buffering, it is an even wiser action to free yourself of the ties to that person that allow them to hurt you as soon as possible. Reaching out to others you trust is often the first step.

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25. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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Anna
on August 10, 2007 at 8:32 am

To Just Me and all

Thinking of usefulness of tools- the term Feminine Dominance for me would currently score around one and Conscience… ten.

Conscience seems to be a recognition and a holding of my heart. When I wake up in the morning, my cat pads silently into my room, magics her self onto the bed and with some delicacy settles on my chest with her front paws lightly resting on my neck. When I finally open my eyes her yellow ones are looking straight in to them.

I love these moments, her liberty, and the warm weight of her. After a while various angsts start to prickle. What happened with the gas bill? How could my sister have said that? The cat jumps up and I follow.

I notice that my daughter has stuck a piece of chewing gum on the book case, that there’s a smear of chocolate something on the Sofa. There’s a rush of panic when something forgotten is remembered. As I drift into the kitchen to make coffee, there’s regret about not having done the dishes last night. Busy hands in the hot water suddenly become motionless as it penetrates that what I did yesterday was very foolish, my face burns with shame.

In the past if I had had my wits (steward) about me, I might have responded to these unpleasant moments by saying: just separate; think about something else. This is just vanity. Come back to the present. Do a sequence. Now I use my wits to try to stay with the unpleasant. Why? Because it is part of the present.

It occurs to me that each time I have turned away from WHAT IS, no matter how noble sounding the rationale I have been buffering. If it occurs to me to stick with it, with out applying any words, what had been unpleasant becomes a wordless burning force the heart… it radiates through out the body, igniting.

Have you ever sat next to Robert at an event and smelled semen on his breath? A friend called me last year, she had decided to give her self a treat and go to an event. But her overwhelming experience was of revulsion. Instead of just living/riding the myriad of contradictions that the smell evoked she had tried to block it out; to re-model the present into a place where her beliefs could remain intact. She attempted to rationalise her self out of it: she kept telling herself how lucky she was, how she should focus on the impressions, how Robert was a conscious being, how there were certain things that she at her level couldn’t understand…

But the smell remained.

And what of Feminine Dominance. I now call it a variety of things such as ‘morality’ ‘socio-cultural programming’ or ‘the wish to be certain in advance that my feeling will be approved of’. These seem to be more accurate. As a woman I had always been slightly irritated and hurt by the term, but had seen it as a duty and opportunity to ‘separate’.

The important thing seems to be not to let the tool thieve from Conscience. I remember the tears streaming down my four year olds face as I dragged myself off to another meeting….

Now she’s thirteen and when she says “Mama you’ve gotta to see this cool pic of Bill” (from boy band) I try to break away from this letter, to really see what she’s showing me, and not to enrage her by saying that he looks like a girl.

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Michael Prochazka
on August 10, 2007 at 2:06 pm

Dear Friends, Anne Tuder asked me to post this here. So here it is.

Dear Friends,

Leaving the FOF was a relatively easy thing to do. However, coming to grips with the fact that it had taken me 5 ‘long’ years to ‘wake up’ to Robert’s ‘outrageous’ (Initially, I used the word ‘preposterous’.) claims regarding his own person, hasn’t been so easy at all. Perhaps I needed to verify for myself that ‘imagination indeed satisfies all centres”. Be that as it may, a pressing question facing me now is how to protect myself from falling into a similar trap again. Is there anyone out there who could help me to answer this very important question?

Michael
Prochazka

[answer: keep asking the question]

==========
Innernaut
on August 10, 2007 at 4:20 pm

[quoting another poster]

“I’m sharp enough to know my mind is not controlled. ”

So was I friend, so was I.

“Mind control? Everybody else’s minds are controlled, I’m getting free of mind control. Everybody else is too asleep to see the truth. And this isn’t a cult. All those other groups may be cults, but this one is different. Yes, I know they all say they’re different, but this one REALLY IS different. If they can’t see it then they can continue to sleep. If you think about it, it’s a perfect cover for a conscious school — to look like an ordinary cult. C influence devised the play to protect the Fellowship — sleeping people would destroy us if they knew we were a real conscious school. It’s brilliant — we’re hiding out in the open. It’s amazing really, how lucky we are. And so what if Robert is using our money to buy expensive trinkets and pay students to have sex with him. He’s conscious and we can’t understand the higher. It’s a play C influence created to give us friction to separate from — it’s a test to force us to separate from the lower self that’s concerned about those boys’ welfare. That’s just feminine dominance anyway. But I think for myself about all these things. Mind control? Yeah right.”

==============================
Purchasing awakening
on August 10, 2007 at 4:44 pm

About laughter:

“Buddha’s laughter is both an expression of, and a inspiration for, enlightenment.”

Now, from Robert:

****************************
Dear Friends,

The Teacher has requested that we work with an exercise of not laughing for one month, until November 23. The exercise applies only to the Apollo d’Oro area. Robert noticed that the seven of hearts is more prone to occupy space around food, and the aim of the exercise is to help us gain control over this part of our machine.

Linda T., Apollo

******************************

Dear Friends,

Robert wishes us to resume indefinitely the exercise of not laughing around the dining table, as the King of Clubs particularly uses this circumstance to lure us away from the present.
On his last journey, while dining with friends in Abu Simbel, Robert observed a neighboring table, whose diners were laughing loudly. Because Robert and his entourage had set the aim at the beginning of their travel not to engage in laughter around the table, observing this table of non-students was a useful lesson for them. Robert commented, “C Influence are great teachers. Observing this table laughing is an even more useful lesson than the ancient site we just visited.” Robert gave several angles about laughter, but towards the end, a new connection came to his mind. “I only now realize that the Chartres devil is laughing, showing that through laughter the king of clubs overthrows the nine of hearts.”

Linda T., Apollo

From Robert: Laughter is far from innocent.

************************************

Dear Friends around the world,

Robert sends us the following message, with his love.

Thank you for giving up artificial laughter for real presence. It is the key to success for our school; one of the few instances one gets something for nothing.

In friendship,
Linda T., Isis

***********************************
Dear friends,

Robert sends the following message to students around the world, with his love.

When you are at the table, please avoid sharing funny stories that are true, such as humorous incidents that have actually happened. In the guise of telling the truth, the lower self is trying to introduce laughter and open the door to the seven of hearts. Please reserve such stories for other occasions to avoid laughter around the table.

In presence,

Linda T, Isis
**************************************

Dear Friends,

The Teacher requests that when a picture is being taken of us, we should try to be moderate in our smile and not show our teeth. Robert points out that the instinctive center, being animal intelligence in human form, likes to display its teeth.

The poster below illustrates the point.

In friendship,

Linda T, Isis
******************************

Dear Friends,

Attached are two images that Robert related to his recent request that we not show our teeth when a picture is taken of us. In both cases, the devil’s teeth are showing.

With love, from Buenos Aires.

Linda T.

==============================
Bass Ackwards
on August 10, 2007 at 5:04 pm

Here is a story from this year, sometime around the beginning of April:

Wednesday we had our first meeting on the prehistorics. I hadn’t read the Thoughts yet, so everything was fresh. Long (but not tedious) angles. Interesting cave drawing images, connected to other images we have already seen, mainly from Egypt. Though the explainations were obviously stretching the point, it was enjoyable seeing and hearing all this out of patterns material. I was content to just be present and have no “I’s”. Then S. began his angle, and X. held up the image which was of a couple having sex, “dog style”. It looked like prehistoric graffiti. At first I thought it was two men, but then Robert began explaining the woman as the nine of hearts, and the man entering her as the steward. The absurdity mounted. I began to laugh, and tried to control myself, so that when it finally broke out into the room it was more of a snort(!). There were five other students there, faces turned to me while I struggled to control myself and S. continued reading. Then X. began to laugh, then Y., then Z. (a newer student), then S., and finally A.. The effort to try to control myself and the absurdity of it all caused tears to run down my cheeks, while S. tried to continue to read. The steward’s arms and legs were long be and short be etc… But then he would break up into uncontrollable laughter, too. Something about “intercourse” and “irrefutable evidence”. I was looking around and taking in impressions, mouth open for big gulps of air. It took a few minutes but we all made it through the angle and our collective fit. An amazing state. . .

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WhaleRider
on August 10, 2007 at 5:06 pm

Dear Purchasing Awakening:

“I find it hilarious that anyone in their sane mind can take new ‘teaching’ seriously…”

Hence the no laughter exercise. You might choke on your own vomit. Save lives, saves teaching payments. Everyone a winner.

I am so glad you are here.

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26. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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Purchasing awakening
on August 10, 2007 at 5:11 pm

Question: WHERE IS THE BISTRO MONEY?

“the Teacher will use these funds to rebuild the Bistro” – OK, did he? Or could he lie to us again?

“All your generous birthday gifts will be going to the Bistro rebuilding project.”
So… where is it? The plan was to re-open the Bistro by July 4th, 2006

WHAT HAPPENED?
Were you informed how your money was used?

************************
March 15, 2006

Dear Friends:

On Sunday, March 19th, Robert will celebrate his 30th Crystallization anniversary….
…We can express our gratitude to Robert by giving donations through the Fellowship of Friends to honor his 30th Crystallization anniversary.
In turn, the Teacher will use these funds to rebuild the Bistro, which was destroyed by fire in June 2004. The Bistro project is our new focus for 2006.

You may send your donations with a beautiful card directly to Robert at the Galleria or log onto Propylaia and follow the links to contribute on line. All donations are appreciated and tax deductible. Our goal is to raise $200,000.00 for the rebuilding of the Bistro.

Love,
Patricia Ch.
Isis

************************************

March 17,2006

Dear Friends:
For those of you who have already contributed to our fund for re-building the Bistro, a sincere thank-you…
Your donations are helping us reach our goal of raising $205,000.00 in efforts to reopen the Bistro on
July 4th, which is the 35th anniversary of Isis.

In a recent daily card Robert said,
“We have many events in order to strengthen one another, so that we become too strong for the lower self.”
And now he is aiming for us collectively to re-establish the Bistro, which shall provide another enchanting venue
for being present and strengthening ourselves with our 30 Work I’s.
The projected monthly financial requirements for construction at this time are:
March $40,000.00 April $35,000.00
May $55,000.00 June & July $75,000.00
Suggested contributions are: $5000, $2500, $1000, $750, $500, $250, $100, $75, $50, $25
Your gifts to Robert for his 30th Crystallization Anniversary Sunday, March 19th and his birthday May 12th can be given
as donations to the Fellowship of Friends as a way of supporting the Bistro project. When paying by check please make payable to:
Fellowship of Friends
Post Office Box 100
Oregon House, CA 95962

If you prefer to pay by credit card, log onto: http://www.propylaia.org/
and click to go to ‘Donate to Bistro Project’

Your donations are truly appreciated.
With love & gratitude, Patricia Ch., Isis

Buddha: Right efforts stand for control of passions.

**************************************

Dear Friends,

On May 12th we shall celebrate our Teacher’s birthday.
Robert has asked that all birthday gifts to him be made in the form of cash donations to the FOF Projects Fund, with the aim to rebuild the Bistro.
This year’s gifts are particularly special as they will help realize the aim to rebuild the Bistro ~
Once again we are going to witness a miraculous new development at Isis.
All your generous birthday gifts will be going to the Bistro rebuilding project.

To give Robert a birthday gift, you may send a check made out to:

Fellowship of Friends
Post Office Box 609
Oregon House, CA 95962
************************************
May 2006

My dear friends,

Tomorrow, May 12th is Robert’s birthday. Robert is asking that your gifts for his birthday be donations to the Fellowship of Friends as a way of supporting the Bistro project.
A gift to the Teacher is as much for oneself as for him.

Robert enjoys the beautiful cards and notes sent to him at the Galleria. So you may wish to send him your card with a contribution. Note on check ‘Bistro’ and make it out to FOF.

Other options are to mail a check (made to FOF) and mail to:

Fellowship of Friends
P.O. Box 609
Oregon House, CA 95962
Also, you may prefer to use your credit card on-line by logging onto Propylaia.org and following the links “Donate to Bistro Project.”

************************************
June 6, 2006

Dear Friends,

On the evening of Thursday, June 15th, you are invited to dine with Robert and friends at a lovely fund raiser that will help us rebuild the Bistro.
This event will be held at the home of A & P Ch., who shall be providing fine wines to complement the artfully prepared dinner by Ilya.
Time 6:30 PM
Dinner is for 20 with 8 standing room places available.
Cost of the dinner is $350 per person. (Three time payments are available)
Standing room can be reserved for $75 per person
To reserve please telephone P. at 692—-

************************************
That was it. No more talking about the Bistro or the funds raised.

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27. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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Email
on August 11, 2007 at 12:05 am

From March 14th, 2006

“Galleria Crystallisation Anniversary Dinner
7:00 p.m-$350./$300./$250.”
……….

“Students may use time payments, raffles (on voucher events), cash, and credit cards to pay for events. We accept VISA, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express.”

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Yesri baba
on August 11, 2007 at 6:53 am

[addressing another poster]

“Seems to come from place of judgement, negativity, hostility.
Land of no possibilities.”

This comes from your fof washed brain.

“…it is the finer energies that make it all make sense.”

This and every word you have written on this blog come from your fof washed brain.

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Elena
on August 12, 2007 at 1:05 am

From Girard Haven’s “Best Thoughts.”

“The Teacher often reminds us that we need to remember that there is a higher right. And the higher right in the work is to remember ourselves, even if that means being “wrong” on the level of the machine. The idea of payment can be useful. If being wrong is the payment I have to make in order to be awake, then I am willing to make it.

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Joseph G
August 12, 2007 at 8:12 am

I saw an ad on a Muni bus the other day that said: “I thought he was a great guy until he raped me.”

Following is copied from a gay-and-lesbian website. Sorry it’s so long but the whole thing just seems incredibly pertinent. If you don’t have time to read it, I suggest at least scanning through “Gay Rape Myths” at the end…

Male rape: when Mr. Nice turns nasty
BY BRIAN VAN DE MARK
Published Thursday, 12-Jul-2007 in issue 1020

Joseph’s date seemed to be going well enough. . .

==========

For the complete text of Joseph’s post above, see: http://fellowshipoffriends.wordpress.com/2007/08/08/the-fellowship-of-friends-discussion-part-18/#comment-5757

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Joseph G
on August 12, 2007 at 7:14 am

The blog is a stage. The audience is not who talk to one another here, it’s the invisible watchers. About 400 fewer FOF members in August than in April. How many of them posted here? Probably no more than 10. How many of them read what was written? (Did any of them not?)

It really is ALL good. It is all exactly the way it was meant to be. Clearer and more clear. Fat Boy, Who Knows, Emanon, Just Me…at this blog-format meeting you aren’t reading other people’s quotes anymore, thank God. It’s just you and your level of being in this prayer meeting. Here’s a tip: if you want to communicate effectively, whether to those recently-or-long-departed, or to those still-in-but-just-by-a-hair, you had better practice your listening skills more. Otherwise you are simply naked! Talking that FOF jive to yourself just like always, only now everyone sees through you, even without knowing your alternate names. Everyone can see you here, can see that you, like Robert, essentially don’t give a shit about all the collateral damage, past or present, as long as your delusional “higher aims” continue intact.

Among other things, what I’m trying to say is you do not have respect. You are talking to your “elders” here kids – this is one thing that your cult vanity simply cannot fathom – and they are running circles around you. But what else can you do but try. Defend your leader, your lives. The only problem is, you may be anchoring this hardline FOF defensiveness within your own being the more you write it out here. It’s a lot harder to remember the i’s aren’t real once you’ve taken the trouble to articulate them for an audience of thousands.

The audience is much luckier. They can just watch, and absorb, and let action come to them…and it obviously is (X 400 graduates in only 4 months).

As I allow myself to just sit in the audience for a while it really does just get too pathetic at times. But righteously so. All good. All good. All are playing their roles perfectly, no?

With love,

Joseph G

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28. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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Yesri baba
on August 12, 2007 at 3:06 pm

“For as long as man has been sufficiently conscious to leave written notes, there are those who’ve been intrigued by activities of consciousness that were outside collective concerns. This interest has been labeled variously as magic, the occult, the mystical, the spiritual, the struggle-to-Awaken, the search-for-Enlightenment, or simply, The Knowledge. The bottom line is, some people have always sought to function in a manner not inherent; it still goes on today, but few of them ever pursue the matter deeply enough to get to the bottom of it. Instead they are satisfied to be students of magic, the occult, awakening and enlightenment, rather than understanding the reality behind such words. There is nothing wrong with this any more than there is anything wrong with preferring to listen to music as opposed to making music. But there is an obvious distinction between being a listener and being an artist, and no purpose is served by denying the difference. Likewise, if you really want to discover and then create your own nonstandard running of consciousness, you need to face the facts about your interest in this affair and not pretend to fool yourself, as is natural for routine consciousness.

To be conscious is to be dissatisfied; this constant neural disquiet is a survival technique: at the non-conscious level, everyone silently accepts this and gives it no particular note; but a few do make note of it–a few always have. There is a sequence of stages that underpins these peoples’ history in this matter: At first, they do not like the way life is; if they progress, they move to a stage of not liking themselves; should they move past that point, they reach a third stage where they dislike the way they think about life and themselves. Few venture beyond that third stage, but beyond that is where the whole thing begins.

Every ordinary sane person thinks that the world outside of them (or, outside of their mind, actually) is insane; this is neither true or not true–it is simply one of an infinite number of objectively meaningless concepts natural to consciousness. All you need do to get stuck in this stage is be alive. To a lesser degree, every ordinary sane person also thinks of him or herself as being short of satisfactory, but this notion is entertained in consciousness only for brief moments and under nonroutine conditions. A few sane nonordinary people find their attention regularly focused on their own consciousness, and think of its operations as ill-becoming them individually. Their overall thinking accords sufficiently with the human herd’s for them to function adequately therein, but in the privacy of their own head–they don’t like it. People at this stage are the ones who become seriously involved in organized activities devoted to discovering another way that consciousness can run. As befits the mind, the activity will have a particular method of achieving the goal, and the participant will become a student of the method. But to go from busy, monkey consciousness to dead-still, snake consciousness, you must move beyond the study of a method to the study of a goal.

The mind must have a map in hand to ever believe that it has started a journey toward the goal. But consciousness will quickly accept a periodic glancing at the map as actual travel. When you start, you cannot SEE the goal; all that you can see is the map–the method you have chosen to use as a vehicle TO the goal. This is how it works for everyone, but you must eventually recognize that no method, discipline, map or teaching is your goal; the reality of the other state of consciousness, and all ideas and talk about it, are two different things: so different, in fact, as to be beyond the widest definition of “different.” They are from two different realities.

One method is as good as another; if it initially seems good to you then it is good for you. You have to have somewhere to start, but the words and ideas that consciousness can entertain are never the same thing as the goal itself; they hide the goal; they walk around on it while talking about it so that you cannot see it; they excitedly point off in one direction or another where they say the goal lies, while it lies right under their feet.

There is no “way” to discover this other way in which your consciousness can operate. There is no right way, there is no wrong way. There IS no way–but you must use one.

You cannot think an “enlightened thought” until you think SOMEthing, but nothing you can think has any real significance regarding this goal. Anything you think about the goal is actually you thinking about a method or a map; you cannot think about the goal, there is nothing you can think about it; whenever you are thinking about the goal your thoughts are mulling about on top of it, hiding it from your view.

You can think that life is not right; you can think that you are not right; you can think that what you think about life and yourself is not right; but if you really want your consciousness to run in a way that affords you an entirely different way of thinking, what you need focus on is the neural floor in your head on which your thinking is taking place. Ignore what your thoughts think about life, you, or even themselves, and look, instead, beneath their feet: look at what they are standing on. There is that longed-for, other level of consciousness. It is ultimately just that simple. You just LOOK and there it is.

I grant you, it can seem to take a lifetime of convoluted efforts to ever get to the stage where it is that simple to see, but you may as well know now that ultimately–it is–just that simple and obvious.”

Jan Cox

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Veronicapoe
on August 12, 2007 at 2:33 pm

[addressing another poster]

. . . I understood you to indicate that you didn’t think you could trust me because of all the old stuff I have been dredging up about FOF. I don’t know what to say about that except that the past is not gone, it belongs to the present.

Think about it! If the only thing that is real is the present, then the present, the “eternal now,” includes the past. Those whom you should distrust are those who tell you that it doesn’t matter what happened in the past.

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29. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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Janna
August 12, 2007 at 10:26 pm

Hello everyone,
When I think about my joining FOF 12 years ago, I recall few interesting things. Mainly, that certain things were not disclosed or presented to me until after certain commitments were made.

No one mentioned a thing about apocalyptic predictions at prospective meetings, also there was no mentioning the fact that the Teacher regularly and excessively engages in sex with his students. Just these 2 things would have been major red flags for me, and both were not mentioned upfront. Both things were/are major aspects of the FOF, and please don’t say that this is “not important”. Ask Robert whether his predictions are important, and whether having sex with boys is important.

I recall joining, paying the fee and then having a brief conversation with center director after the meeting. “We should tell you that there are exercises.”

-Exercises?

“No smoking, no drugs and no sex outside marriage. There are large fees if you break any of these exercises”.

– Well, why didn’t you tell me that BEFORE joining?

“Also, we work with two predictions from our Teacher. First – in 1998 California is going to fall into the ocean as a result of a major earthquake, and second – in 2006 there will be Armageddon.”

-???

“Well, the End of the World, but our School will survive it”.

As soon as I heard this one, I felt slightly dizzy, and though – oh no, no! Apocalyptic predictions! It’s all bullshit, this whole thing is bullshit, just another creepy sect, run run!

But … I stayed. I had such a longing for “awakening”, and these people were nice and interesting, they were into 4th way ideas… They also told me not to take predictions seriously, kind of dismiss them, and just wait and see if the whole “school” works for me. They were so kind and supportive. So I ended up staying, and the “school” started to work on me, forming new concepts, behaviors, discriminations, bonding experiences, and also ripping connections with my family and “life” friends.

All this time there was not a word about teacher’s homosexuality and his engaging in lots of sex with his students. What, our center director R. T. and his wife R. didn’t know? What, older students D.C. or I.W. didn’t know? But it was not mentioned at all, and I had no idea that this takes place on such a large scale.

In my opinion, there is no real “equality” when a priest or teacher or doctor engages in sex with those who came to him for help and guidance – students, patients, members of the church… They are looking for his advice or help, or even submit themselves to his will. There simply can’t be any equality in such situation. If you think there is equality – ask any FOF student if he feels “equal” with Robert…

But no one was talking about it in the center.

So I finally decided to move to Apollo. I rented my apartment, packed some bags and departed to USA. As we were approaching the misty foothills, I suddenly asked my friend – is the Teacher married?
-No, he doesn’t need to – he has plenty of lovers.
-Oh… his student lovers?
-Yes… Many! He is a homosexual, and has male student lovers, lots of them! Actually… I am one of his lovers too.

-???!!!

I felt so bad, I felt like immediately turning around and going back! Why no one told me this before? I wouldn’t have joined a school where the teacher screws his students and predicts Armageddon! This is such bullshit. I felt it with all my heart.

But again, just like before my outraged conscience was calmed by “wait and see” attitude. And the more you wait, the deeper you go… The harder is to see, the easier is to wait…We all know this, don’t we.

I felt like lots of things in the school are kept secret, and not disclosed to the prospective students for the reason not to scare them away and get them to join. And then they join and get “worked on”, or “sucked in” – whichever you prefer, and then it is so hard for one to quit because of developed emotional connections, sense of belonging to a special community and important commitments like marriage to a student or moving to Apollo.

I am (and was) sincerely appalled by school’s recruitment campaign. It just didn’t ever seem right. It is just not fair, not honest. Prospective students are not told upfront the truth about various aspects of the organization. The payment schedule is not fully discussed either. Usually, there is a blurry phrase “payments will increase in time as your valuation for the school grows”. Well, wouldn’t it be honest to actually say how it is going to increase, and that it will end up being way more that 10% of one’s income with all additional payments and expensive teaching events?

There is also no disclosure of tasks and exercises. What if one doesn’t agree with all of them? Wouldn’t it be simple fair to spell it out upfront?
Wouldn’t it be honest to mention that the Teacher is seriously into sex with young male students, and most likely a prospective young male will eventually end up in his bedroom, because this is what tends to happen?

These days, for example, FOF members offer an “Esoteric Tours of the Metropolitan Museum” – as they are advertised in TONY. Sounds exciting, right? Once we met a guy who actually went on this tour. He said it was a strange presentation, very weird and the interpretations of artifacts were questionable, and he also felt that there was some hidden agenda…
Of course! The agenda is to get you to join. But it is presented as something else – mysterious esoteric tour to educate you – as if FOF really cares about educating “life people”!

I am writing this not because of anger. I don’t feel like a victim. What happened in my life – happened. It was a mixed experience, both very good and very bad, so I have no regrets over the past. I don’t think anything is ever “wasted” in one’s life.

But I am writing this to point out the continuing dishonesty in recruiting of new students. Any prospective students should be warned: FOF is not being upfront and honest about many important aspects of the organization, and this is simply not right. If anything, it is a bad business practice (mildly put).

It is ironic that FOF now has a “keeping quiet cherub” on their main page – what a joke.

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30. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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Steve Anderson
on August 13, 2007 at 9:15 pm

Signs of the Second Coming

I moved to the property, then called Mt. Carmel Monastery, in late fall 1975. My primary reason for moving there was to determine, if I could, the validity of the school and the teacher of the school. Admittedly, I was as about as dumb and naïve as the rest of the membership but I had high hopes of finding truth. If I were to immerse myself in the 3 lines of work, as my center directors said I must, then maybe my questions and doubts would be answered.

November nights in the foothills of the Sierras are cold. Living in my VW van in the parking lot presented a myriad of challenges, not the least of which was staying warm through the night. There was always the option of staying in the Lincoln Lodge on the floor, which had its own peculiar downside, especially on weekends when hordes of the faithful would arrive for the curious forms of self-flagellation that we all went through. I think we called it voluntary suffering. I could probably think of other names for it now.

Living like this for 6 weeks was tolerable and at least I had a safe refuge for independent quiet time that many others did not have. And I could always get in my humble mobile home and drive off the property any time the wish should arise. Since I was not on salary I was able to be a little bit of a free floater and eventually landed the chore of being the kitchen shopper. This made sense since I had the van and knew food having worked in the restaurant industry for 6 or 8 years.

Then seemingly out of nowhere I was invited to share a house with Virginia Jenkins, Linda K (now T) and Mark F who would come to be the closest essence friend of my adult life. And of course little 4 year old Eli who would become the poster child for why children were not allowed on the property. (Most mornings Eli would ride his big wheel down our hallway, crash into the wall, all the while screaming “it’s wake up time, it’s wake up time”) Mark was from the Hawaii center and was part of the James Trattner entourage of Beelzebubian named “I am not identified with my name” scruffians that arrived en masse about the same time that I did. If anyone knows the whereabouts of my friend Mark, please let me know.

Anyway, I willingly and naively accepted the invitation to move into the house with the above mentioned people. I had known Linda from her time as tri-director of the Seattle center as some of us regularly traveled from Portland to Seattle and she came occasionally to Portland. As I had a car and was an unemployed semi free floater and Linda did not have a car and was on salary of some sort and also seemed to have loads of free time, I became for a while her designated driver of sorts. Virginia was also in the “driving Linda about here and there” business as well.

At this time, Linda was the editor of the Mt. Carmel Journal which was the weekly journal for the bay area meeting and spent much of her time rewriting said journal with the clear intention of making the thing more coherent and intelligible than the actual meetings were. A daunting but manageable task given the frequent inane and often absurd “angles” that the ever not so intellectually bright teacher spewed forth. I would, as many others would as well, often read those journals and wonder if Linda had even been at the same meetings as the rest of us, although I knew she was because I occasionally drove her to them.

These journals were then sent to the various centers to the anxiously awaiting flocks of grateful students. They were not expensive, $10 an issue I think, and even though the material between the covers was, well, almost useless drivel, they at least had pretty artwork on the cover and lovely quotes or poetry on the back.

So spending a fair amount of time hauling Linda around, she came to openly speak to me about her latest theories about Robert. She told me on one occasion that she had told Robert that he was the second coming of Christ She had all of the appropriate biblical quotes to support her theory and had manufactured what was to her a plausible comparison between Christ and Robert. Oh puleeeze Linda give me a break. To his credit Robert, at that time, rebuffed her claims as nonsense. This of course did not deter Linda from pursuing this line of study. If nothing else, Linda was persistent. In due time the biblical quotes started to become more frequent at meetings and Robert seemed to take to the idea.

Sometime much later, after I had left the fof, there was an article in the Los Angeles times around the Troy incident where Robert was queried as to whether he was the second coming and he replied, “Thou sayest”. The transition was complete. I wonder if he would have come to this on his own without the research and prodding of Linda.

On a related note, following the death of Meher Baba, Robert said that the torch of consciousness was being passed to him. I never have figured out how that one worked.

Best to You All

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31. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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32. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

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somebody
on August 15, 2007 at 3:35 pm

I never questioned the believe that we need tones of sex energy to awaken. But after being away from Isis for a while it feels very wrong and unhealthy what is going on there.

Normally people are not flirtatious, they keep the boundaries and don’t kiss you in a mouth. If you go out with another couple most likely the girlfriend of the other guy is not going to put her head on your shoulder, or touch your balls, or ask for a triple kiss or get in the car with you to go buy more wine.

Beware if you are in a relationship and you are coming to Isis. One thing is certain – watch out for your partner because it can be stolen at any moment. And of coarse you can be seduced in no time!

Under the name of “emotionality” or “love” or “second line” you might “swallow” something different which you did not plan for, which will make you feel sleepless for a few nights and maybe secretly thinking of betraying your partner. Or actually going ahead and “working against feminine dominance”…

Besides the fact that a lot of people were at some point in the relationship with a lot of people, there is always this gazing game going on. For many students I talked to it is difficult to focus during the meeting because there is a lot of deviation – “new” young foreigner girls, horny visitors, new couples, your ex’s. Some of the students in the room are also on the ceiling painted nude…

Is it really what we need to awaken? I find it tiring…

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33. Best of the Blog - July 20, 2010

beginning of page 19…

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David B.
on August 21, 2007 at 12:14 am

[addressing another poster]

I can’t let your comment that Robert “was very accessible” go by without responding. In my experience, it was usually quite difficult to gain access to Robert in any meaningful way. And it was precisely this inaccessability that made it difficult to make an informed judgement as to his claim to be a geniune teacher of the Fourth Way.

Most of my 15 or so years in the FOF were spent in centers far away from Robert. I did have two dinners with him in New York during that time. That was it. Of course, even during such occasions one’s “access” is somewhat limited, since there are many other students at such events and one doesn’t want to monopolize the questioning. Furthermore, one is reluctant to probe too deeply or be impolite, etc. Anyway, Robert is/was very adept at wriggling out of answering any really penetrating questions. I’m sure he knows when his fraudulence is in danger of being exposed. If really pressed, he would probably just ignore you.

After I moved to Apollo, as it was then called, opportunities to at least see him or say hello in a reception line became more common. But that is not the kind of access that offers any substantial interaction which would enable one to get a real glimpse into the man himself. I went to several teaching dinners during that time (in spite of the outrageous expense and the fact that I was on salary) always hoping to verify something about his being, to address my doubts about him, etc. Inevitably I had to settle for listening to him prattle on about the imminent fall of California, offer some self-aggrandizing platitudes, or maybe, if I was “lucky”, some quotes from the 44.

After I began to discover the facts about Robert’s predatory nature, I was less and less inclined to want “access” to him. I stayed on in the Fellowship for a couple more years just because of friendships I had made there.

The fact is that Robert is very restrictive about granting access to most students. He has numerous secretaries and go-betweens to screen out the unwanted. He charges ridiculous sums to hear him “teach”. And if anyone persists into probing into the numerous accusations against him they are immediately expelled from the school.

Many of the great men and women of history have left memoirs or autobiographies about their early lives, recounting their experiences and how they acheived their success. Or at least their disciples wrote accounts of their lives. Even Gurdjieff, who generally shunned publicity, wrote ‘Meetings with Remarkable Men’, a book in which he paid tribute to those who helped him along the way.

I often wondered why Robert was so reluctant to reveal any significant details about his life before he became a god-like, concious being, man-number-whatever. I would have liked the opportunity to sit down and interview him and ask certain questions. Maybe questions about his formative years. Maybe questions that might make him squirm a little – just to see what he would do. Of course he would never grant such an interview. He has to control everything around him to insure that the illusion of his ‘concious being’ status is maintained.

If Robert ever did offer unfettered access to himself, I think many students would soon be able to perceive the truth about him and then they would probably leave the Fellowship. As to why some of “his boys”, who actually have had quite a bit of access to him, in one way or another, continue to stay — my feeling is that they simply can’t admit to themselves that they have let some disgusting old man sexually abuse them. In order to preserve their pride, dignity, or whatever, they must convince themselves that the “goddess in a man’s body” line is true.

Regards to everyone,
David B.

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34. veramente - July 20, 2010

# 31 Best of the Blog

thank you for re-posting the you tube, it’s very well done!

Thanks to everyone in the past (and present) for writing from their hearts and minds the truth about their experience in the FOF.
We were the chains of fools….

35. silentpurr - July 20, 2010

Linda K. is such an enabler! She didn’t even believe in the 1st ‘coming’ of Christ!
meow.

36. Agent 45 - July 20, 2010

Although Jesus Christ was against the death penalty,
(“Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”),
He was legally arrested, tried, convicted & crucified.

37. WhaleRider - July 20, 2010

Cult Floats New Bid to Seal Truth Leak With Cement

NEW OREGON HOUSE, California (USA) – The FOF, Inc. crafted a new plan Tuesday hoping to seal for good a blown-out well of information on the Internet called, “The Fellowship of Friends Discussion.”

The announcement on Thursday that the FOF had stopped the flow of new information completely for the first time since the blog began raised hope among devastated FOF followers that the three-year nightmare may soon be over.

If is not known exactly how much of the truth has leaked into the Internet, but if the upper estimate of over four hundred thousand blog entries is confirmed, the disaster would be the FOF’s biggest accidental information spill ever.

Due to the separation between church and state, he US government, also a huge purveyor of misinformation and lies, allowed the sex energy giant to keep in place the truth cap stemming the information flow from the ruptured wellhead, as FOF spin engineers floated a new plan to stop the blog by stepping up its efforts to help its followers ignore and downplay the blog’s effect.

The FOF said the aim is to send down heavy new rules through the Linda T. fallout preventer and truth sphincter valve system that sits on top of the truth and then inject thought-blocking cement through the ears of all remaining followers to completely seal their minds.

“The ultimate goal of stopping the truth leak as quickly as possible while at the same time trying to minimize any critical thought spillage into our flock will ensure the cult’s survival and allow me to keep my job,” she admitted.

“As always, we’re still very much in the design, planning and recruiting phase,” said senior FOF vice president for exploitation and new boytoy production Abraham G. “We’ve got some real experienced Photoshop teams working on this over the next couple of months.”

Recent “integrity tests” on the tighter-fitting truth cap placed on the damaged critical thought faculties of FOF followers has detected doubt seepage and other groupthink anomalies, A.G. said, but stressed they did not appear to be of major concern. “We are still very much in control despite our lack of integrity.”

The latest plan is similar to a “top kill” bid at the end of the blog’s first year after the initial information explosion occurred which tore through the FOF’s grip on the truth about Burton’s perverted proclivities and sank their platform of platitudes, when FOF spin engineers spent months pumping FOF propaganda into the leaking well of information in an attempt to discredit outspoken FOF dissenters.

That effort failed to smother the gushing truth, but FOF officials believe the outcome could be different this time with the information flow already contained. “All they are dong now is repeating the same old lies over and over again, just like we do,” A.G said.

The information spill, now the worst environmental disaster in FOF history, loomed large over the recent “Journey Forth” summit talks between visiting FOF followers and CEO Robert E. Burton. “Just block it out and be present” was the overriding theme this year.

But the sex energy giant is high on the list of public enemies on the Internet, with thousands of minds and sex centers contaminated and thousands of livelihoods ravaged over the cult’s nearly forty year existence.

38. WhaleRider - July 20, 2010

This just in…

BP Caught Using Altered Image

By Brett Michael Dykes, Yahoo! News, 7/20/10

“Is a picture worth more or less than a thousand words if it’s
Photoshopped?

John Aravosis of AMERICAblog made an interesting find Monday night: A high-resolution image on BP’s website of the troubled company’s Houston-based Deepwater Horizon response command center had been altered.

The photo flap inspired the usually staid Washington Post to quip, “Apparently BP is no more adept at doctoring photos than it is at plugging deep-sea oil leaks.”

Gee…I guess Photoshop is the preferred tool to aid in the process of verifabrication.

Thank you Higher Forces for taking time to arrange this event in the interest of my personal evolution!

39. deludedbob - July 20, 2010

Dear Moderator,

Can the page header here be revised to include, http://www.livingpresence.com the new site for recruiting the unsuspecting into the Fellowship.

There are now to my knowledge, three english language sites set up for this purpose;
http://www.livingpresence.com
http://www.pathwaytopresence.org, (which now seems to link directly to livingpresence)
http://www.beingpresent.org

Thanks, deludedbob

40. The FOFion - July 20, 2010

Hard Copy Editions of The FOFion and WhaleRider News Now Available

OREGON HOUSE, Calif. (ARK) — Due to a spike in demand, FOFion Inc. and WhaleRider News Corporation are making the two award winning publications available in print editions for a limited time.

Publishers insist that print editions will include numerous doctored photos. Additionally, all stories will be verifabricated by at least five sources before going to print.

Stacks of the newspapers will be available for sale at Apollo d’Oro, the gatehouse, as well as before, during, and after all Fellowship of Friends gatherings worldwide. Students are encouraged to browse the publications during dinner with Robert and while doing the sequence.

Suggested contributions are $5000, $2500, $1000, $750, $500, $250, and $100. The newspapers are also offered in “standing-room editions” for just $75 each. Students on salary can buy the papers for just $50.

41. WhaleRider - July 21, 2010

“FOF followers are asked to avoid smiling with teeth visible while reading these publications and any FOF follower observed laughing out loud will be asked to leave.”

~Robert E. Burton

42. fofblogmoderator - July 21, 2010

39 is new, and yes- I will try to include the link on the next page

43. CB - July 21, 2010

long time ago

44. Best of the Blog - July 21, 2010

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Life Person
on August 21, 2007 at 2:05 am

In my experience, there is very little of Burton to “access.” From what I read on this blog, things have gotten far more extreme and bureaucratic and conveyor-belt-like in recent decades, but I doubt Burton’s become a lot more intelligent and articulate.

I lived for a while at the Blake cottage. When Burton was interested in me, he was pretty attentive, and we drove around in the back seat of his Rolls. If I wanted to see him, there were no major barriers; we lived in the same little house, and I could just walk up to him and ask him a question. He would usually try to respond. I wasn’t under the illusion that I saw all sides of his personality, but I did get the impression that I saw what there was to see of his teaching style. He was definitely observant. But there wasn’t much substance. Believe me, I wanted to find profundity, but it was very difficult. He offered canned angles to one and all, over and over again. His seduction routine, which Uno described so well, sounds essentially the same as decades ago. It’s all tapes, and his “teaching” was similar. He would sit at the dinner table and say something like “The universe is unimaginably enormous” (he had a certain phrasing for it, which he would repeat every so often, that I can’t remember exactly–I’m sure someone out there will remember it, since he said it every couple of weeks, for the benefit of those who weren’t aware that the universe is really big). Much of what he said was unverifiable, along the lines of “We are embarking upon blah, blah, blah,” or “The gods have asked that we blah, blah, blah.”

He once told me how long I would live. That was pretty cool. I felt special! A month or two later he gave me a different number. When I pointed that out to him, he seemed surprised and amused, as if to say “Well, what did you expect?”

He told me whose ladder I was on. I later realized that the ladder concept meant that if he thought you physically resembled a person who joined before you, you might be on that person’s ladder, but you weren’t supposed to believe it, because it was a “teacher’s tool,” which I gather meant it was a head trip designed to establish that he knew something you couldn’t possibly know.

He told me which lifetime I was in, and since it wasn’t ninth, I was in stunned and mopey silence for days–after all, it was the first time it had occurred to me that, as far as this lifetime was concerned, there was absolutely nothing I could do to “become conscious.” It took me a while to get rid of that bit of meaningless propaganda.

When I got into a relationship with a woman, he took me off salary, but I would stay at the Blake cottage on weekends when I visited. It was only after months of this that I was summoned into his bedroom. Although I had been living in a harem with several other young men, no one talked about it (at least to me), except in the most vague, inscrutable, smirking way, to suggest that they knew something but weren’t going to say exactly what it was. Why would I suppose my teacher was a sexual predator unless I had seen it with my own eyes, or at least heard it described plainly by someone I trusted? Without that, things that in hindsight seem obvious clues could be explained away. One young man I knew had been asked to move into the Blake cottage before me and within a day or two left Renaissance, freaked out. I later understood what had happened, but at the time, even he couldn’t bring himself to say straightforwardly what the problem was, I believe because he was frightened of revealing Burton’s secret. Strange as it may seem to some, I really didn’t know what Burton was up to until I was standing there, being asked if he could “receive me,” along with the routine about being a goddess, Walt Whitman being gay, etc. When I said no, he began masturbating me, uninvited. I pulled away. No, he didn’t wrestle me to the floor. He just gave me the silent treatment for the remainder of my time in the Fellowship. From which I learned at least as much as from all of the things he told me.

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45. Best of the Blog - July 21, 2010

sans the inadvertently bold formatting…

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Life Person
on August 21, 2007 at 2:05 am

In my experience, there is very little of Burton to “access.” From what I read on this blog, things have gotten far more extreme and bureaucratic and conveyor-belt-like in recent decades, but I doubt Burton’s become a lot more intelligent and articulate.

I lived for a while at the Blake cottage. When Burton was interested in me, he was pretty attentive, and we drove around in the back seat of his Rolls. If I wanted to see him, there were no major barriers; we lived in the same little house, and I could just walk up to him and ask him a question. He would usually try to respond. I wasn’t under the illusion that I saw all sides of his personality, but I did get the impression that I saw what there was to see of his teaching style. He was definitely observant. But there wasn’t much substance. Believe me, I wanted to find profundity, but it was very difficult. He offered canned angles to one and all, over and over again. His seduction routine, which Uno described so well, sounds essentially the same as decades ago. It’s all tapes, and his “teaching” was similar. He would sit at the dinner table and say something like “The universe is unimaginably enormous” (he had a certain phrasing for it, which he would repeat every so often, that I can’t remember exactly–I’m sure someone out there will remember it, since he said it every couple of weeks, for the benefit of those who weren’t aware that the universe is really big). Much of what he said was unverifiable, along the lines of “We are embarking upon blah, blah, blah,” or “The gods have asked that we blah, blah, blah.”

He once told me how long I would live. That was pretty cool. I felt special! A month or two later he gave me a different number. When I pointed that out to him, he seemed surprised and amused, as if to say “Well, what did you expect?”

He told me whose ladder I was on. I later realized that the ladder concept meant that if he thought you physically resembled a person who joined before you, you might be on that person’s ladder, but you weren’t supposed to believe it, because it was a “teacher’s tool,” which I gather meant it was a head trip designed to establish that he knew something you couldn’t possibly know.

He told me which lifetime I was in, and since it wasn’t ninth, I was in stunned and mopey silence for days–after all, it was the first time it had occurred to me that, as far as this lifetime was concerned, there was absolutely nothing I could do to “become conscious.” It took me a while to get rid of that bit of meaningless propaganda.

When I got into a relationship with a woman, he took me off salary, but I would stay at the Blake cottage on weekends when I visited. It was only after months of this that I was summoned into his bedroom. Although I had been living in a harem with several other young men, no one talked about it (at least to me), except in the most vague, inscrutable, smirking way, to suggest that they knew something but weren’t going to say exactly what it was. Why would I suppose my teacher was a sexual predator unless I had seen it with my own eyes, or at least heard it described plainly by someone I trusted? Without that, things that in hindsight seem obvious clues could be explained away. One young man I knew had been asked to move into the Blake cottage before me and within a day or two left Renaissance, freaked out. I later understood what had happened, but at the time, even he couldn’t bring himself to say straightforwardly what the problem was, I believe because he was frightened of revealing Burton’s secret. Strange as it may seem to some, I really didn’t know what Burton was up to until I was standing there, being asked if he could “receive me,” along with the routine about being a goddess, Walt Whitman being gay, etc. When I said no, he began masturbating me, uninvited. I pulled away. No, he didn’t wrestle me to the floor. He just gave me the silent treatment for the remainder of my time in the Fellowship. From which I learned at least as much as from all of the things he told me.

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46. Best of the Blog - July 21, 2010

or not…

47. fofblogmoderator - July 21, 2010

43 is new

48. CB - July 21, 2010
49. Best of the Blog - July 22, 2010

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BRAINWASHED?
on August 21, 2007 at 7:30 am

HOMESTEAD HERITAGE
Leaving the church

Jeremy Crow says he was repeatedly told that going to other churches would constitute leaving God because other churches had “less light” than Homestead Heritage. When he and his wife decided to leave four years ago, a leader told him the action might trigger a vision the leader had of Crow’s newborn son being run over and killed by a truck.

Settling the matter

The matter never went to court. When Elder and his attorney met with Homestead Heritage members, a monetary settlement was reached. Because of the terms of that settlement, both Elder and church members say they can’t disclose the amount.

http://www.rickross.com/groups/homestead.html

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50. Best of the Blog - July 22, 2010

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WhaleRider
on August 21, 2007 at 3:17 pm

I remembered something today about my first trip to Europe with Robert Earl Burton. We arrived at our destination city, booked rooms, and were all having lunch, the five or six of us. Robert seated me next to him….subtle, no? What a control freak, always deciding where to ‘put’ you and when you eat. We never had snacks or anything while we were with him, so I can remember being hungry most of the time. We always ate with him, when he ate (and drank). Actually, I welcomed the few glasses of wine we had a lunch to break some of the tension between many of us traveling as a group.

At the end of the meal, Robert began toying with a toothpick. He wasn’t particularly chatty most of the time, and we were supposed to be attentive and take notes with our trusty notebooks and fancy pens should he actually say something noteworthy. I did manage to take down of few of his wiseacres, and now that I think of it, I was requested to turn my notebook in when I returned to Renaissance to be…. reviewed…? There were no new angles (or reflections of a personal nature in my notebook), so I guess it passed censorship and was returned to me.

Anyway, his royalness was toyingly dipping the very tip of his toothpick in some mayonnaise left on his plate, putting into his mouth and grinning. I was impressed at how he could scoop out such a tiny speck. I intently watched him do this a few times. I had the thought that maybe in a supreme act of consciousness, he was displaying his great will over food, his power over his passions, since at one time he was very overweight and was no longer so. (I guess the high protein diet really does work.)

I’m thinking, maybe mayonnaise was one of his downfalls and he had to be very careful with it, but now and then he allowed himself to taste it, to test himself, like a long recovered alcoholic might to prove something to themselves. I ‘projected’ all that ‘consciousness’ onto him. I was, as Sponge Bob would say, in “i-ma-gi-naaaaa-tion!”

At one moment, as all my attention was concentrated on the little speck of mayonnaise (with a little bit of attention directed back at myself, otherwise I wouldn’t have remembered this); he leaned in, smiled, and asked me, “(my name), could I have some of YOUR mayonnaise?” I don’t remember my exact response, I probably nodded slightly, but I do remember thinking, “Sure Robert, whatever that’s supposed to mean.”

I was focused on the speck.

He reached over, took a speck of some mayonnaise from my plate, put it into his mouth and smiled.

Not more than 15 minutes later, I am in his hotel room; he pushes me onto the bed, aggressively unzips my pants, and performs fellatio on me. There are no words exchanged, only actions. The phone rings. He stops as I am mid-stream. I stain my pants.

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51. Best of the Blog - July 22, 2010

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Purchasing awakening
on August 21, 2007 at 4:01 pm

. . . The page “Current overview of school” with total numbers of students is recently removed from Propylaia – guess why.
It ain’t pretty to show a steady decline in membership.

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52. Best of the Blog - July 22, 2010

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Rhino Neal
on August 21, 2007 at 4:06 pm

. . . The current teaching is so ridiculous even current members don’t believe it. And yet they continue to make their payments. From the outside this seems completely insane.

In recent conversations with students, the reason for remaining in the FoF is usually prefaced by something like “A lot of what is being said is very strange” and continues with, eg, “but I love Robert”, “but the School helps me with being present”, “but all my friends are here”.

Sad, isn’t it?

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53. silentpurr - July 22, 2010

Why, it is Robert himself who is the big Slavering Monster hiding in the closet of Robert’s own Psyche!
In his fantastic world, you don’t really exist, except for his purposes.So please don’t speak of love….
It is laziness and fear that enables students to write the checks that enable Robert to act out his dark creepy fantasies on unsuspecting flies..i mean students.
From the descriptions, his methods of lovemaking are a bit vampirish/spiderish wouldn’t you say? almost ghoulish.
Why would anyone want to support that?
Instead of waking up poor Fellowship students in order to stay must drift more deeply into s l e e p…
But then, perhaps they find comfort in their cozy silken shrouds…

54. nige - July 22, 2010

53 silentpurr

“The things that are not, seem to be and seek to consume the things that are” – The New Testament

Robert Earl Burton, from the word ‘go’, twisted first The Fourth Way ideas to his perversion – “C Influence wants us to do this, that and the other”/”I am not writing the play of Robert Burton” – and certainly showed no continuity of influence from either his so-called teacher, Alex Horn and back through Rodney Collin to Ouspensky then Gurdjieff. EVERYTHING ABOUT THE FELLOWSHIP OF FRIENDS BECAME OPULENCE AND GREED (bad taste, which the enablers and ‘faithful followers’ promoted and continued).

I had no opportunity (and still do not) to enjoy wealth enough to become a ‘good and supporting student’ and lost many of my ‘student acts’ the longer I stayed in the FOF, because I had to learn the business side of promoting my art-form in life in order to make even a little living (I ended up $30,000 in debt by the time I was ‘released’ from the ‘school’).

I believe the Fellowship of Friends is still the Way of the Programmer or the Way of the Corporate Recruiter or the Way of the Financial Gouger…..Nigel.

55. reader - July 22, 2010

Looking at WR’s old post, which is a remarkable story he told on the blog three years ago (50), the word creepy comes to mind to describe Burton.

Not often mentioned here I think is that fof followers are taught that “being out of patterns,” and doing something “uncomfortable for the machine” is admirable. I actually agree with that — that’s not a bad idea at all. It’s how we grow and learn and develop as human beings.

But where it goes wrong is when someone is “shamed” into it… rather than encouraged to develop as a human being by trying something new, and then using common sense and self-respect in determining exactly where it’s a good idea to draw the line. The idea of “going against the machine” is exploited to the hilt by Burton — anyone who doesn’t “try something new” in this case is obviously weak, low level of being, too conservative in their mindset, and unwilling to work on themselves and their habitual ways of seeing the world. Shame induction. And fear induction. The fof is one walking anxiety, shame, and guilt trip — some of the heaviest and unhealtiest and (yep) “coarsest” energies known on earth. If there is such as thing as Hydrogen 192, or whatever, the fof might consider looking at itself rather than those life people.

Read #50 up there. Honestly: If you knew THIS is where your substantially large payments were going, would you have joined?

56. veramente - July 23, 2010

# 50

Was everyone victimized and submitted? was there anyone who actually was able to protest loudly to Robert Burton’s disgusting face?
smacked him in the face? kicked his balls, spit? run away on the spot?

57. Agent 45 - July 23, 2010

#56
More than a few people have earned the right to ‘clock’ Burton.
One of these days it will soon be all over.
Sincerely,
Richard Boone

58. silentpurr - July 23, 2010

Gurdjieff talked about zombie-like people for whom essence was ‘dead’. And for years now there has been a systematic ‘killing off’ of conscience in the FOF.
Please remember that rape is ALWAYS an act of violence!
But of course Robert IMAGINES himself seductive (think goddess), as though the young hetero stars-in-the-eyes student might actually fancy him as well! Delusional and completely unfair!
With the way the Fellowship has been descending regarding Robert’s sexual aggressions, I am not at all surprised at the reported family-violence undertones.
The creepiness has seeped down and may be spreading…

59. WhaleRider - July 23, 2010

Group Finds New Lows

Origami House, California (USA)- The Fellowship of Friends, Inc., a quasi-religious research group based in hills of Yuba County announced today that they have made a startling new discovery in their quest of mapping and balkanizing the entire intricate inner workings of the Human mind.

After years of intensive research spanning almost four decades and involving thousands of participants, Robert E. Burton, lead inner researcher and founder of the creepy group, claims to have discovered a self that appears to be even lower than the Lower Self, which he has named, “the Slime-Ball Self”.

To what lengths Burton has gone to discover this diabolical and dangerous self remains a closely held trade secret, the mere mention by underlings sends Burton into a hissy fit and is grounds for dismissal.

Apparently this is the part of ourselves that can take advantage of others while appearing to be their friend. The group cites people who sell vacation timeshares and feel absolutely no remorse for selling something to the public that goes unused and loses value as soon as it is sold as examples of people with well developed Slime-Ball Selves.

“The Slime-Ball Self” even appears in many works of forged art handed down to us over the centuries, some of which we have collected for posterity, but only a man of my level of being can see it,” Burton claims. “You cannot trust this part in others. It will take advantage of you no matter what.”

According to inside sources, Burton expertly holds a mirror a certain way to reveal the Slime-Ball Self to others, who marvel in astonishment how they hadn’t seen it before, even though he is standing right in front of them.

60. reader - July 24, 2010

“Extraterrestrial thoughts, subterranean actions.”

I always thought people were talking about “us” when they said that — the ordinary Men No. 4. (and Women No. 4) in the FOF.

But I get it now. We were actually referring to Burton.

61. Best of the Blog - July 24, 2010

Brain Police
on August 22, 2007 at 1:08 am

A psychoanalytic approach to understanding why some cult leaders abuse their followers, from an excellent essay that examines the psychology of followers as well as leaders:

“[T]he cult leader profoundly depends on the fanatic devotion of the follower. This dependency is deeply shameful to the cult leader, because, based on traumatic aspects of her own developmental history, any dependency has come to mean despicable weakness and humiliation to her. Developmental trauma in those who in later life can be termed pathological narcissists typically consists of being raised, by parents or other caregivers, under extreme domination and control, accompanied by repeated experiences of being shamed and humiliated. The pathological narcissist identifies with this aggression and comes to despise his own normative dependency, to be contemptuous of dependence, which is equated to weakness. Manically defending against deprivation and humiliation, he comes to believe that he needs no one, that he can trust only himself, that those who depend on others are weak and contemptible. Thus the cult leader, largely unconsciously, compensates for his inability to trust and depend on others, and defends against the intense shame he feels connected to need and dependency, by attaining control over his followers, first through seductive promises of unconditional love and acceptance, and then through intimidation, shaming, and belittling. This serves to induce the loathsome dependency in the follower, and the cult leader thus contrives to disavow his own dependency, felt as loathsome and shameful. By psychologically seducing, and then battering the follower into being the shameful dependent one, the cult leader maintains his superior position and can boast delusionally of being totally liberated from all petty, mundane attachments. These processes of subjugating others, and inducing in others what one loathes and seeks to deny in oneself are extreme forms of manic defense against the shame of dependency.”

from Traumatic Abuse in Cults: A Psychoanalytic Perspective

by Daniel Shaw

http://www.danielshawlcsw.com/traumatic_abuse.htm

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62. Best of the Blog - July 24, 2010

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Simply True
on August 22, 2007 at 4:34 am

Over the last months, I have been exposed to many horrible accounts of Robert’s conduct. I wish I could recount them all here. But they are not mine to tell.

In some cases, the only difference between a student and an ex-student is information. Many current students simply are unaware of the reality. Many practice intentional ignorance so that their beliefs can remain undisturbed.

I encourage anyone with stories that help to illustrate the self-centered, vengeful, spiteful character of Robert Burton to record them on the blog.

For the record – I have heard the following information from reliable students and ex-students:

A lady at Isis, who began a relationship with one of Robert’s favorites, was prohibited from attending any events for a long duration. This lady was one of Roberts most dedicated supporters for many years.

Robert would ask his married sexual partners not to tell their spouses. IMO Pressuring students to break faith with their marriage partner and then lie about it is @#$%^&*()_+*&^%$#@!~!!

International recruitment of boys for Robert was/is widely practiced, knowingly, willingly, by many students.

One student had 3 abortions on Robert’s advice.

Robert would call his assistant at all hours of the night to make calls to boys to visit.

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63. Best of the Blog - July 24, 2010

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BRAINWASHED?
on August 22, 2007 at 7:27 pm

MIND CONTROL CULTS
INTERNATIONAL CHURCH OF CHRIST
The Nashville Church forces members to donate, suit says

Nashville, USA — Two former members of The Nashville Church have filed a lawsuit claiming the church uses cultlike tactics, manipulation, peer pressure and guilt to force members into tithing and making other financial contributions.

In their lawsuit, which was filed Friday in Williamson County Chancery Court, Jack and Kay Pelham of Red Boiling Springs say they joined The Nashville Church in 1998 and were required to contribute a portion of their earnings each year in the form of tithes and offerings. The Pelhams claim they were threatened with the “loss of their eternal salvation” if they didn’t submit to tithing and fundraising efforts.

The Pelhams are seeking to recover more than $93,000 in tithes and offerings they made to the church, the International Churches of Christ (the denomination’s headquarters in Los Angeles) and two affiliated charitable organizations. The couple had been members of the ICC for 17 years.

“These contributions, which were solicited under the guises of ‘contributions for the poor’ and ‘special missions contributions,’ respectively, were instead treated by the defendants as ‘unrestricted funds’ and diverted by them for the personal (gain) and benefit of several high-ranking employees and officers of the defendant corporations,” the lawsuit states. . .

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64. Best of the Blog - July 24, 2010

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Purchasing awakening
on August 23, 2007 at 5:04 am

[A quick note for those who may be unfamiliar: The following is not a parody.]

Some recent deep wisdom from Our Beloved Mad Teacher.
Did you know that there is much more to 10 mammoths? Also, your usual reed coaster has a hidden deeper meaning. Wow.
Actually, whatever you see – is not it. Don’t ever believe your eyes – it’s all way more complicated! Let the Beloved Teacher explain. It’s either means a sequence, or a pyramid, or wordless breaths. See? Marvelous, isn’t it?
Enjoy.

10 MAMMOTHS AND 10 WOMEN
A cave painting from Rouffignac, dating from 14,000-11,000 BP, depicts a procession of ten mammoths. The six mammoths on the right represent the sequence, while the four mammoths facing them on the left represent “the salvation of God” – the four wordless breaths. The end of the sequence and the beginning of the four wordless breaths is where the “two worlds touch.” The two mammoths that are facing each other have two overlapping tusks, as well as two tusks not shown here, representing the four wordless breaths. It is a marvelous image.

Similarly, the fifteenth-century “Voynich manuscript” depicts a procession of ten women. The six women on the right, who are all touching, represent the sequence. Facing them on the left are four women, representing the four wordless breaths. The mammoths and the women represent the sequence, while the women also represent the white queen on the chessboard – the nine of hearts. A popular song says, “It’s still the same old story – a fight for love” – work ‘I’ number six – “and glory” – the four wordless breaths. I recently saw an advertisement on television that said, “So simple, even a caveman can do it.”

REED MAT
“Without corners” means that it is firm and even like a perfect square. A pre-dynastic reed mat in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo illustrates this idea. I could not quite believe it when I saw it. The “perfect square” in the center represents the four wordless breaths, while the eight rings of the spiral leading to it represent the inhalation and exhalation of the four wordless breaths.

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65. Best of the Blog - July 24, 2010

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ton
on August 23, 2007 at 12:36 pm

being new to this, i hope it’s not coming too much from ‘left field’ and as for protocol i’m not sure why this is mostly anonymous/ pseudonymous but i’ll follow those examples for now. i’ve looked at some of the postings here and have to wonder about the aim of this… everyone is unique, different. But we share experience. i’ve spent some time looking at the faces and names in the members section and many of you i remember but there are more that i don’t know. i have some time before returning to work, it’s an unusual day for august in phila, overcast, cool, raining, a good day for nostalgia and memories.

it seems that rb to some degree still has an affect/effect on those who write here and this is partly a way of processing.
the word ‘processing’ implies progression or at least some movement… where does ‘the work’ (in this case the conversation) get stuck and how to MOVE ON positively is a question. (on the other hand, there are those who claim to live on hate alone).

i moved to renaissance with ‘m’ my highschoolsweetheart in 1977. we ate, showered and slept at the lincoln lodge, then lived for a while in a tent in the woods next to a stream. i was asked to move to the blake cottage and followed the course laid out in many of the previous posts, i won’t go into the sordid details. (the ‘academy’ was under construction at the time although i might still be considered a “cadamite” – or catamite – is the beneficiary/victim of an older, powerful, homosexual predator-pederast who is constantly recruiting a succession of adolescents, and showering affection, preferences, professional opportunities and material goods in return for sexual favors. my question is whether conscious bob was aware of the rich pun involved in naming his house the ‘academy’ and the definition of a ‘cadamite’ ? probably not).

after i woke up to what was going on, m and i got back together, we were married at renaissance, she became pregnant, rb asked that the fetus be aborted, his rationale was that the child would not be born onto ‘the ark.’ my gut feeling was that this was revenge for moving out of the blake cottage. i asked miles barth for counsel, in so-many-words he said ‘teacher knows best.’ m had to be persuaded by the heavyweights surrounding rb at the time, despite her tears and protests she had the abortion. i still feel guilt and complicity over this, otherwise i wouldn’t be writing about it.

i left the fof in ’83 a year before one of the predicted cataclysms, m stayed, remarried and i think still remains (does anyone know?). i lived in sf after leaving, it was difficult, i lived for a time on the street, i bumped into and shared a bottle with kimo beech who had apparently suffered similar circumstances, he’d been ‘down-and-out’ for some time. i slept and ate in church shelters, and later managed to rent an apartment in the tenderloin, right next door to the glide memorial on ellis street. there is much i am leaving out here.

a minion for samuel sanders, his name was robert i believe, a venusian from vancouver? he said he had worked with counseling prisoners after certain experiences… whatever, he wanted to get me involved in the lawsuit – i declined, never did hear about the outcome. where to go from here in my story? to ‘move on’ was the idea then, that’s why i didn’t want to get involved in the lawsuit, i was trying to put the past behind. but one doesn’t forget the past… what to do with these memories? share them? where do they go? if there is a moral here, i guess it’s about moving on, recognizing the importance of memory, reflection, individuation and community.

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66. Best of the Blog - July 24, 2010

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Skeptical Optimist
on August 23, 2007 at 6:02 pm

202 ton

Thanks for your post. I was living in a tent up there in 1975 (hey, remember those “sun showers” somebody was selling, converted from 5-gallon pails? That was cool.) so maybe we know each other.

It sounds like you’ve had quite a journey, and the details of your experiences with Burton are important to reveal, if you feel comfortable doing so. It’s all still going on today, apparently.

After leaving, understanding the balance between personal responsibility for our actions and decisions on the one hand, and the reality of mind control and undue persuasion on the other, can be quite tricky. But it seems a key to healing to me.

If you can post under your own name, it will enrich the blog and it might make your participation even more valuable for you. Just a thought.

Be well.

JoelF

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67. Best of the Blog - July 24, 2010

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if memory serves
on August 24, 2007 at 7:00 am

The stories people tell have been helpful to me, perhaps this one will be helpful to others.

Miles was ready to leave the fof a few years before we actually left. I, however, was not yet ready and pleaded with him to stay, give rb more benefit of the doubt, etc. I now regret the personal damage Miles did to himself over those years, not being able to fully believe the strong message his role as chief apologist conveyed to others about rb.

During the time that the fof was needing to prove that it was a religious 501(c)3 organization, we were asked to look at other “cults” to show how the fof was different from them. All we could see, however, was how similar we were to them.

When the day finally came to leave, the cognitive dissonance too strong, Miles was ready to go, with me or without me. He gave me the choice and it was an agonizing one. Fortunately, over those years since he’d first suggested leaving, I, too had been looking at things somewhat more critically and knew in my heart it was the right thing to do, however painful. He just wanted out and was definitely not interested in influencing others to leave and starting his own group. To this end, we decided to leave without telling anyone, not even my sister. We felt the need to tell rb in person and had to wait several days after our decision to leave until he returned from a trip to Europe. I remembering attending a concert at the town hall, sitting next to my friend Charles R. and feeling like the walking dead, knowing that that evening, I had 1,000+ friends, and the next day would have only one.

Our departure from Renaissance was a surreal experience that is still very clear to me. RB was quite tired when he returned to the property and wanted to rest but Miles was persistent in telephoning his house to say we’d like to come by. When we arrived at the Goethe Academy, I remember removing our shoes in the area just before the door. It was beautiful, we looked around, then at each other, knowing that we’d never see this again and it was a bittersweet leave-taking. Robert opened the door and seemed annoyed that we had been so insistent about seeing him but ushered us graciously into the “den”. We spoke a few pleasantries, he told us he was preparing to send us to lead the Paris center, and then we dropped our bombshell on him. I don’t remember exactly the few words Miles spoke, but Robert’s response shocked me in its calculating brutality. He immediately withdrew his energy from us and began to muse aloud, “what will happen to the donations? This will have an impact on the membership.” I think he asked us if we were sure of our decision, then quickly showed us to the door.

Others left the fof at that time, many for whom Miles had symbolized a canary in the mine. He did lead some meetings for less than a year which served as a sort of “half-way house” for those making the transition from in to out, the blog of the eighties. When he felt he had nothing more to say, he disbanded the group and began to pursue his own path.

I’ve hesitated writing about Miles, not wanting to put words in his mouth, or intentions in his actions that are not true. I suppose I more strongly feel that choosing conscience over convenience is a personal struggle worth making and writing about.

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68. nige - July 24, 2010

To support post 67 BotB…..

“Cognitive dissonance is an uncomfortable feeling caused by holding contradictory ideas simultaneously. The theory of cognitive dissonance proposes that people have a motivational drive to reduce dissonance. They do this by changing their attitudes, beliefs, and actions. Dissonance is also reduced by justifying, blaming, and denying. It is one of the most influential and extensively studied theories in social psychology.

Following a choice, such as buying a new car, expectations can clash with experience, as when the car does not fit its garage. In a state of dissonance, people may feel surprise, dread, guilt, anger, or embarrassment. Despite contrary evidence, people are biased to think of their choices as correct. This bias gives dissonance theory its predictive power, shedding light on otherwise puzzling irrational and destructive behavior.”

How many still in the FOF are feeling this?…..Nigel

69. ton - July 25, 2010

Even a pure democracy will naturally and inevitably turn into an authoritarian hierarchy in the face of any one person whom enough people believe to be an infallible “god.” Those supporters then defer to his “omniscient” perception of reality, and collectively enforce that same deference on their peers, against the penalty of ostracism from the community—a fate worse than peon-ship, even were salvation not at stake.

Even if the guru-figure was ever all that he claimed to be, it would take at most a few years for an inner circle of “guards” to accumulate around him or her. Those high-ranking followers will then work roughly within the overall constraints set by the guru/superintendent and immediate culture. They themselves are always looking up to the guru-figure with respect, being at times harshly disciplined by him, and feeling always inferior to him. They will thus exact their own craved measures of respect, obedience and superiority, to re-inflate their own self-esteem, from the only source available, i.e., from those below them in the closed community. And the obedience of the latter can only be unconditional, with no threat of rebellion, when their wills are completely broken. (Absolute power in any context is mutually exclusive with a tolerance for discontent. For, it is exactly the vocalization and acting-out of such dissatisfaction that would show the governing power to be less than absolute).

So, how badly do you want enlightenment?
The guru claimed to offer access to profoundly ecstatic spiritual realization, and the only way to gain access to that experience was by playing his game. The better you played the game, by showing your devotion and obedience, the greater your contact with the guru and the more frequent your opportunities for grace.

The ability to put one’s own conscience aside and do whatever the guru asks you to is further believed to be essential to God-realization (with that being gained only through the grace of the guru). One might well then even seek out guru-figures who are known to be “amoral.” For, what is morality but a product of the same conceptualization which daily blinds us to the Way Things Are? Isn’t breaking such arbitrary hang-ups exactly what we need to do if we wish to be free of our dualistic conceptual boundaries? So, a “wild and crazy” guru who will “wisely” place you into situations where you have no choice but to drop your categorizing intellect and culturally molded conscience in “choiceless awareness” would be the best for accelerating your own spiritual evolution, yes? You could further hardly ask up-front for a detailed list of what you might be asked to do in such a community, as that would spoil the spontaneity of the guru’s “divine expression,” would it not?

There is further, quite clearly, no alleged abuse or breach of conventional morality so gross that it cannot be rationalized away, even by persons outside of the residential group. That is so, particularly for those who desperately want to believe that one or another guru-figure is the “greatest living Realizer” or the like, and that everything he or she does is a “Teaching.”

http://www.strippingthegurus.com/index.html#stgtoc

70. brucelevy - July 25, 2010

69. ton

Great book. Shows quite obviously many of the modern gurus were some seriously fucked up individuals. I guess that was their “hook”.

71. X-ray - July 25, 2010

67. Best of the Blog – July 24, 2010

“what will happen to the donations? This will have an impact on the membership.”

A true face and purpose of Robert Burton.

72. X-ray - July 25, 2010

60. reader – July 24, 2010

“Extraterrestrial thoughts, subterranean actions.”

‘Extraterrestrial thoughts’?

These aren’t thoughts at all, this is just a psychopathic mind fermentation.

73. X-ray - July 25, 2010

19. Best of the Blog – July 17, 2010

‘Are you interested in helping Robert raise $4,400 for the building projects and creating a wonderfully memorable occasion in your home?’

‘Your role will be to recruit your friends to attend the event and help you cover your commitment for the cost.’

‘Our aim is to allow you to enjoy the wonderful states created by hosting Robert in your home, without the burden of worrying about the details of the event.’

‘They work very hard to make the event run smoothly so that you can relax and reap many glorious moments of presence from your special event.’

‘They work very hard to make the event run smoothly so that you can relax and reap many glorious moments of presence from your special event.’

‘As a beautiful reminder of the occasion, you will receive a photo album of pictures from the event and other offerings that recognize you for your generous support.’

‘In order not to put our teacher under financial pressure, we encourage you to gather your friends’ support prior to your commitment at the Auction.’

I can’t even comment on that crap without having my blood boiled.

74. reader - July 26, 2010

72. X-ray – July 25, 2010
“Extraterrestrial thoughts, subterranean actions.”

“‘Extraterrestrial thoughts’? These aren’t thoughts at all, this is just a psychopathic mind fermentation.”
—–
Yep. True. For Burton it’s actually, “Psychopathic thoughts, psychopathic actions.”

My point was that this “photograph” – “extraterrestrial thoughts, subterranean actions”, which was often a general statement of the human condition — was never aimed at Burton.

I never heard anyone say, “You know Robert, you can sure talk the talk, but I’m not seeing you walk the walk.” He was beyond any criticism. He was un-photographable. (and if anyone ever did, they were gone immediately.)

It’s odd that we considered it a “low level of being” is someone didn’t accept scathing criticisms or “observations about us” with grace and ease. “Stop buffering.” “If the shoe doesn’t fit, where it anyway,” and all sorts of other nonsense. But those who saw it that way probably never stopped to think that Burton was worse than anyone at “receiving photographs.” He simply didn’t receive them.

When I was still speaking in Fellowship-ese, I remember some of the reactions I received from people when I suggested that “maybe” Burton was “mechanical.”

To say such a thing, obviously I was not a good student, and certainly not in the inner circle, and probably still in one of my earlier lifetimes, and obviously pretty negative to suggest that Burton was guided by his own greed and desires like everyone. I didn’t understand at the time that it was much worse than that.

75. reader - July 26, 2010

“In the long run, nothing is more unbearable than a tepid harmony in personal relations brought about by withholding emotion. The repressed emotions are often of a kind we wish to keep secret. But more often there is no secret worthy of the name; there are merely quite avowable emotions which, from being withheld at some important juncture, have become unconscious…

“To cherish secrets and to restrain emotions are psychic misdemeanors for which Nature finally visits us with sickness — that is, when we do these things in private.”

-Carl Jung
Modern Man in Search of a Soul

76. Best of the Blog - July 27, 2010

==========
2b
on August 28, 2007 at 12:22 am

The following excerpts are from the transcript of the PBS documentary, “Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple.” . . . I believe in my heart that nothing approximating the horror of Jonestown will ever occur in the FOF.

But can we be sure that the worst has already occurred? Is it really “negative imagination” to ask that question? Or is it a sound concern given all that we have learned about the Fellowship and about other cults?

As Brain Police, Brainwashed, and others seem to be pointing out here, there are striking similarities. That’s worth a look before we claim that we were different — that we are unique.

– – –

“Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple” (aired in 2006 on PBS)

Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: Nobody joins a cult. Nobody joins something they think is going to hurt them. You join a religious organization, you join a political movement, and you join with people that you really like.

——————————————
Grace Stoen, Peoples Temple Member: Peoples Temple truly had the potential to be something big and powerful and great, and yet for whatever reason, Jim took the other road.

Jackie Speier, Aide to Congressman Leo Ryan: On the night of the 17th, it was still a vibrant community. I would never have imagined that 24 hours later, they would all be dead.

——————————————
Garrett Lambrev, Peoples Temple Member: The Peoples Temple services, they had life, they had soul, they had power. We were alive in those services.
Claire Janaro, Peoples Temple Member: I would be up jumping in the balcony and clapping my hands. If you came in as a stranger and didn’t know anything about the politics, you were thinking you were entering an old-time religion service.

——————————————
Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: Every single person felt that they had a purpose there and that they were exceptionally special. And that is how he brought so many young college kids in, so many older black women in, so many people from diverse backgrounds who realized that there was something bigger than themselves that they needed to be involved in — and that Jim Jones offered that.

——————————————
Jim Jones Jr., Peoples Temple Member: And he was kind of left to his own devices. Kind of the kid who ran wild in the street, you know what I mean? Listen, he was in a dysfunctional family. We got a nice name for it now. But when you live in a dysfunctional family, you think it’s normal.

——————————————
John R. Hall, Sociologist: Jim Jones started out on the revival preaching circuit, learning the ropes of being a preacher. And once he started doing that, it became clear that he could get a following.

——————————————
Eugene Cordell, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: We had some people that disagreed with Jimmy. They got up in the audience and they said they disagreed with him. They did not like this integration part of the services. We did ask people to leave the church one night because of that.

——————————————
Rebecca Moore, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: California is perceived to be a very progressive state. This would be the place to implement the dream of racial equality. Not Indianapolis, which seems hopeless, but California, which seems to be the Promised Land.

Fielding McGehee, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: He chose Ukiah in northern California — about 90 miles north of San Francisco — because there was an article in Esquire Magazine that said that Ukiah was one of the nine places in the world that in the event of thermonuclear attack, people would survive.

On-screen text: Ukiah, 1965-1974

——————————————
Joyce Shaw-Houston, Peoples Temple Member: The focus of Jim’s message was taken from the Bible, where Jesus in his earliest days told people to sell all things and have all things in common.

Jim Jones (archival): Jesus Christ had the most revolutionary teachings to be said, in the sense that he said to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, take in the stranger, administer to those who are widows and afflicted in their suffering. And we feel that no one really tried Christianity too effectively in the Judeo-Christian tradition.

Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: The membership increased substantially as he procured more and more Greyhound buses and fixed them up, and every summer he began this cross-country tour.

Claire Janaro, Peoples Temple Member: The purpose of the bus trips was to spread Jim’s beliefs about socialism and the world, and how we can live a better life and about an integrated lifestyle. But behind that, I think it was to gather more members for the Temple.

——————————————
Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: As older people joined, it took a year or so and he’d convince the people that he was doing so much in the community and so why not rather than just tithe your twenty percent, why not sell your home, give the money to the church? And that is what people began to do.

——————————————
John R. Hall, Sociologist: They were giving their life’s money and savings to the church, but in exchange, the church was agreeing to take care of them in the community, not just in a nursing home.
Neva Sly Hargrave, Peoples Temple Member: Well it got to the point where there were so many duties in the Temple that some people had to become full time. So when you were full-time Temple, you worked about twenty hours a day.

——————————————
Hue Fortson Jr., Peoples Temple Member: Being in an environment where you’re constantly up, you’re constantly busy, and you’re made to feel guilty if you take too many luxuries like sleeping — you tend to not really think for yourself. And I did allow Jones to think for me because I figured that he had the better plan. I gave my rights up to him. As many others did.

——————————————
Tim Carter, Peoples Temple Member: I had been in the Temple for just a few months. I was sent backstage in Los Angeles to — to get something for somebody, I don’t remember what. And Jones happened to be coming out of his room and he said, “Hi Tim, how are you doing? How is it going? How do you like everything so far?” And, “Oh, I like it a lot.” And, “you know, it’s really cool.” I don’t remember exactly.

And he reached up and kind of patted the back of my neck, and he said, “I’ll [expletive] you in the ass if you want.” And I just kind of stammered, “No.” You know, “No.” And he said, “Well, you know, if you ever want that, that’s okay, just let me know and we’ll do that.”

——————————————
Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: What he explained to each of us, and in sermons, was that sexual relationships were very selfish and they took away from the focus of the church — and that was to help others. Jim was not celibate. Nobody knew that until perhaps it was their time to find out. What he spoke from the pulpit wasn’t what he did behind the scenes.

Hue Fortson Jr., Peoples Temple Member: I remember one night, one of the brothers had stood up and said, “You know, I think everybody that wants Father to [expletive] them in the butt, you need to take an enema first.” I’m telling you the truth man, I’m telling you the truth. And then the question went on, “Well, how many of you in here have had him to do that?” And whether they were lying or just following suit, hands of the men just went up around the room.

And I’m sitting there petrified because I’m like, “Is this what it’s leading to, that I’m supposed to get to?” And I’m thinking, “hmmm.” But I played it off like, “Okay, I’m being cool. Okay, if that’s where they at, that’s not where I’m at.” Because I’m thinking, “My wife — I’m happy with my wife. With this sleep I’m not getting, I’m not getting enough anyway.”

Grace Stoen, Peoples Temple Member: One of the powerful things that Jim used, to keep us to not think, was that we were never really allowed to speak with one another. I’d look around and I’d say, “Am I the only one that feels this way?” I learned, eventually, not to say anything to anyone.

——————————————
On-screen text: San Francisco, 1974-1977

——————————————
Vernon Gosney, Peoples Temple Member: Jim Jones represented the Peoples Temple as a progressive movement that was threatened. That there were outside forces who didn’t want us to do what we were doing. And it was the government. The government was infiltrating and wiretapping and trying to kill people or assassinate people. That’s what was happening.

Hue Fortson Jr., Peoples Temple Member: He was always paranoid that someone was going to get in and try to kill him — that they had two people that had dedicated their lives, that they were going to jump in front of Jones and take the bullet, kind of like the secret service so to speak.
Neva Sly Hargrave, Peoples Temple Member: Jim started changing a lot in the seventies. He was taking drugs. I think he said it was his kidneys at the time. And he was getting more and more paranoid. Incredibly paranoid.

Vernon Gosney, Peoples Temple Member: There was always threats. Always, always, always, always threats. They were there. They were just about to try to destroy us if we weren’t always viligant [sic] about our movement.

——————————————
Laura Johnston Kohl, Peoples Temple Member: December of ’75, ninety of us went by plane, into Guyana, and saw where we were building the community there.

——————————————
Tim Carter, Peoples Temple Member: What I saw that creation as being was building a city where we could move and raise our children, outside of the oppression and the racism of the United States of America.

Mike Touchette, Peoples Temple Member: When I first went into Jonestown, it was just a footpath in the rainforest. We had Indians in front of us with machetes, and we had Indians behind us with machetes. Three-hundred miles into the jungle, we literally built a city in the middle of the jungle, in the middle of nowhere.

——————————————
Jim Jones (archival): Now, will each of you give a very fond embrace, a salutary kiss of greeting to your neighbor — and let’s fill this atmosphere with warmth and love.
Laura Johnston Kohl, Peoples Temple Member: We thought of ourselves as one big family that did handle our own discipline. I was in a lot of the meetings where people were spanked or beaten, and I was slapped once, also in a public meeting.

——————————————
Joyce Shaw-Houston, Peoples Temple Member: It’s kind of like when you get married and you have this ideal. And you’re, you know, you’re in love and then — you know, the honeymoon wears off and reality sets in. And most people, once the going gets rough, don’t jump out immediately.

——————————————
Tim Carter, Peoples Temple Member: I have a conscious memory of sitting there, thinking to myself, “This is wrong.” And I didn’t do a damned thing to stand up and say, “This is wrong.”
Jordan Vilchez, Peoples Temple Member: It’s like a child in a dysfunctional family. On a certain level, it’s normal, you know? I just kind of took everything in stride.

Hue Fortson Jr., Peoples Temple Member: But then we felt like we had gotten involved and gotten in so deep that it was actually no way out.

Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: I had traveled on Bus Seven, which was Jim’s bus. And he sat down next to me. And I was sitting there and I thought, “That’s weird — it smells like alcohol next to me.” And he leaned over and he said, “Do you know what you do to me?” He had informed me that I was to come in — on Bus Seven, there was a room in the back for just him. He had books. He had a desk. He had a bed.

When everyone got off the bus at the rest stop, I went into his little room and I sat there and waited for him. And finally he opened the door, and without any talk or anything, he just pulled down his pants and — and had sex with me. And as I lay there frightened, not sure what to do, and as I shivered, he’d say to me, “This is for you. I’m doing this for you, Debbie.”

——————————————
On-screen text: Jonestown, 1977-1978

——————————————
Tim Carter, Peoples Temple Member (archival): I have never been so totally happy or fulfilled in my life. I can’t begin to describe it. You could sit here and talk all day long and no words could describe the peace, the beauty, the sense of accomplishment and responsibility and camaraderie that’s here. It’s overwhelming, it really is. You can’t describe it.

——————————————
Relative of Peoples Temple Member (archival): I think that Jim Jones took his group down there because he was afraid to face the publicity and answer the questions here in this country. I don’t think that he feels confident having people talk to their relatives. I think the only way he can survive and sustain what he started is to isolate all his followers from this country and from their families.

Marshall Kilduff, Journalist: The Concerned Relatives were the ex-members who wanted other family members, still in the church, to know they could leave. They wanted them to feel that there was an outside world — that Jones was wrong about telling people they could never leave the church, and that they would be treated badly in the real world.

Rebecca Moore, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: The Concerned Relatives prompted FCC investigation of Peoples Temple. They organized letter-writing campaigns to public officials, to members of Congress. They were incredibly effective in mobilizing government and media interest in Peoples Temple.

Former Peoples Temple Member (archival): He was talking integration. He was talking helping people. He was talking better this and better that.

Male Reporter (archival): What about now? What’s your impression now?
Former Peoples Temple Member (archival): My impression now — that those are fronts for him. I think he’s gone crazy.

——————————————
Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: Every night, at some point, his voice would come over the loudspeaker and he’d say, “I’m sending somebody out tonight, somebody you know, somebody you trust and they’re going to act like they want to leave. But this is a loyalty test and you need to turn them in.”

Vernon Gosney, Peoples Temple Member: A father would turn in a son. A husband would turn in a wife. A small child would turn in a parent. There was no freedom to express to one another what was going on, because everything was suspect. The most forbidden thing to express was to leave.

——————————————
Vernon Gosney, Peoples Temple Member: Jim Jones came to talk to me and the first thing he said was, “Don’t say anything to the reporters. They’re all liars.” The last words I heard from Jim Jones was, “I just want you to know that you can come back to Jonestown and visit your son any time you want.”

——————————————
Jackie Speier, Aide to Congressman Leo Ryan: More people wanted to leave. And then Jim Jones started to make pleas to people, saying, “You can’t leave. You’re my people. Why do you want to leave?”

——————————————
Narrator (anonymous letter, archival): “To whomever finds this note. Collect all the tapes, all the writing, all the history. The story of this movement, this action, must be examined over and over. We did not want this kind of ending. We wanted to live, to shine, to bring light to a world that is dying for a little bit of love.”

– – –

The complete transcript for this documentary can be found at pbs.org. The film aired in 2006.

==========

77. Best of the Blog - July 27, 2010

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Laura
on August 28, 2007 at 9:38 am

This was recently posted on the Sheik’s other blog, thanks to his valiant comrade, the Monochromatic knight.

Terror Management Theory attempts to describe a significant motivator behind human action. It arouse from various academic traditions but is mostly familiar to students of social psychology. The basic thesis is that as humans our primary biological imperative, aside from passing on our genetic material, is to stay alive. And as everyone knows, there are countless unforeseen circumstances in which our existence can come to an abrupt end. It is precisely this which most likely differentiates us from other animals, our awareness of our impending death. I say “most likely differentiates us from other animals” because this has not been entirely proven true. What can be confirmed experientially however, is the overwhelming anxiety generated from this awareness of death.

Otto Rank, Norman Brown, and Ernst Becker posited that humans, ingeniously but unconsciously solved this dilemma by developing cultural world views: “commonly held beliefs about reality that serve to reduce the potentially overwhelming terror resulting from the awareness of death”. All cultures provide meaning by offering a creation myth, a blue print for acceptable behavior on earth, and a promise of immortality either symbolically or literally. Individuals thus become participants in a world of meaning and gain emotional stability in the face of death.

As readers of this blog may know: “All cultural world views are ultimately shared fictions, in the sense that none of them is likely to be literally true, and their existence is generally sustained by social consensus. When everyone around us believes the same thing we can be confident of the voracity of our beliefs”. Good old social proof.

This may not be entirely news for many but the following was certainly something I somewhat knew but never considered in its entirety. “When we encounter people with different beliefs, this poses a challenge to our death-denying belief system, which is why people are generally quite uncomfortable around (and hostile toward) those who are different.” Religious and political conflicts may be much more than disagreements on how one should live their life and more a coping mechanism for death anxiety. Suddenly the state of the world gains a whole new dimension.

“Additionally, because no symbolic cultural construction can actually overcome the physical reality of death, residual anxiety is unconsciously projected unto such groups as individuals, designating them as scapegoats: all encompassing repositories of evil, the eradication of which would make earth as it is in heaven. We therefore typically respond to people with different beliefs by berating them, trying to convert them to our system of beliefs, or just killing them and in so doing asserting that “my God (or political-economic system) is better than ours and we’ll kick your ass to prove it.”

Quotations from Psychology and Consumer Culture

==========

78. Best of the Blog - July 27, 2010

==========
Ames Gilbert
on August 28, 2007 at 2:38 pm

Dear Laura (#19-442 or thereabouts),
That is a great article.
I have to add that most of the anxiety about death is artificially produced by the professional intermediaries and interpreters, that is, the priest class.

Someone who feels himself (it’s usually a him, isn’t it?) to be “called”, or whatever, to become a priest and thus insert themselves between people and God is, on the face of it, mentally ill. It also shows a very low form of spiritual activity, in my opinion, if they see God as external, which is the only way the priest class can claim the benefits of being go–betweens, and so gain ascendancy over a population.

So much for sleeping priests; natural law demands that they must be produced to satisfy a sleeping population. Those, who “should know better”, who understand, to any degree, that there can be nothing between ourselves and the godhead within, because we are That, are simply criminals if they take advantage of cultural norms for their own advantage.

It is no small irony that it is ‘blasphemy’ to the sleeping priests if anyone claims that we can contact our own godhead without intermediaries—and for most of history up to the present, and in most parts of the world, such claims were punishable by death. True blasphemy, in my opinion, is when someone like Burton sets himself or herself up as a teacher or guru, and then claims to be an exclusive and vital intermediary between their students and the godhead. That they are committing this crime targeting those few people who have started to recognize and are trying to escape the cultural hypnosis is revolting beyond words.

Again, one important difference between true teachers and false is that true teachers remind seekers of the godhead within, while false teachers use fear or infatuation to make prisoners of those who seek their advice.

There are literally worlds of difference between fearing death and being aware that death is not only inevitable, but the necessary contrast and counterpoint to life. Those who use fear of death to demean and reduce the experience of this life are spiritually poverty–stricken. Recognize them by their promise of ‘rewards’ to come and their claims of our present unworthiness. In contrast, those who remind us of our mortality, that our only capital is time, that our only ‘duty’ is to plunge into life in all it’s abundance and juiciness and live it fully, to en–joy ourselves exactly as we are, as unique and precious aspects of the godhead, serve us well.

With love to you all,
Ames

==========
2b
on August 28, 2007 at 5:06 pm

“We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it.”

-Edward R. Murrow

==========
Veronicapoe
on August 28, 2007 at 5:37 pm

“With pride we see that one man remains beyond all criticism, that is the Führer. This is because everyone feels and knows: he is always right, and he will always be right. The National Socialism of all of us is anchored in uncritical loyalty, in the surrender to the Führer that does not ask for the why in individual cases, in the silent execution of his orders. We believe that the Führer is obeying a higher call to fashion German history. There can be no criticism of this belief.”

-Rudolf Hess

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79. Best of the Blog - July 27, 2010

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Purchasing awakening
on August 28, 2007 at 6:20 pm

“The School is moving at lightening speed. C Influence continually reveals new knowledge. The level of Robert’s Teaching becomes ever more distilled and objective. . . Our Teacher underlines the importance for each of us to be as closely connected to this sacred Teaching as possible. He has listed as one of our highest priorities the viewing of the Teaching Events on DVD.”

“It is clearly evident that Robert’s efforts, his ability to respond to the wishes of Influence C, continues to bring our sacred School to new levels of being. Our efforts to return to the moment are sustained by the objective knowledge being transmitted by our Teacher.”

“Robert’s Teaching is a true miracle in it’s focus, clarity and scale. We are truly blessed to have this opportunity to view his meetings and dinners.”

“We have the highest material that the gods ever released to help man promote presence.
Love, Robert”

– – –
“We believe that the Führer is obeying a higher call to fashion German history. There can be no criticism of this belief.”

==========
2b
on August 28, 2007 at 6:23 pm

“No one can terrorize a whole nation, unless we are all his accomplices.”

-Edward R. Murrow

==========
Veronicapoe
on August 28, 2007 at 6:47 pm

“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
-Eleanor Roosevelt

==========
Innernaut
on August 28, 2007 at 7:22 pm

Ames Gilbert, in #445, wrote:

“I have to add that most of the anxiety about death is artificially produced by the professional intermediaries and interpreters, that is, the priest class.

Someone who feels himself (it’s usually a him, isn’t it?) to be “called”, or whatever, to become a priest and thus insert themselves between people and God is, on the face of it, mentally ill. It also shows a very low form of spiritual activity, in my opinion, if they see God as external, which is the only way the priest class can claim the benefits of being go–betweens, and so gain ascendancy over a population.”

What is the difference between a priest as you describe him, and George Gurdjieff, whose system purportedly must be followed to avoid being “eaten by the moon” at death? Or, when followed correctly, rewards one with a soul which, once created, will be a single entity unto itself, free to cruise the universe? I’m not sure how much difference there is in the end between ordinary religion and the 4th Way in this regard, as they both have large areas of unverifiable knowledge, which we all have learned from books written by people long dead, whom none of us ever met. Or from 4th Way “priests” with no direct connection to the originators. Any talk of what happens after death seems rooted squarely in imagination, be it based in religion or on the 4th Way, as no one that I have met has any convincing idea what happens when we die. Given that, couldn’t both Gurdjieff and Ouspensky be accused, though not so flagrantly as Burton, for funding their lifestyles by playing on this same fear of death and oblivion? What is the difference between “creating an astral body” and saving one’s immortal soul?

I can agree with you to some extent about the nature of priests in acting as self-appointed intermediaries between humans and God, but I would be wary of painting all religion with such a broad brush. My wife attended a Presbyterian seminary while I was a FOF student, and many of my assumptions about religion and ministry were shattered as my ignorance was replaced with “being.” Protestant denominations were founded essentially on Martin Luther’s protest of Catholicism’s stance of having priests being essential intermediaries, as you say — he insisted on the individual’s right to have a personal relationship with God, and on the church as a “priesthood of all believers.”

As you so eloquently put it, “those who remind us of our mortality, that our only capital is time, that our only ‘duty’ is to plunge into life in all it’s abundance and juiciness and live it fully, to enjoy ourselves exactly as we are, as unique and precious aspects of the godhead, serve us well”– describes very well some of my best experiences in the relatively liberal churches I have, with some regularity, attended most of my life.

I have met some very remarkable people in the Presbyterian church, both members and ministers. Most ministers have little pretense as to their specialness. And there are many members who routinely work harder to make the world a better place than most of us here on the blog ever will. Is this “mechanical goodness”? Maybe. But these days, that label strikes me as a convenient excuse for not thinking about anybody but ourselves.

One more thing. You said, “So much for sleeping priests; natural law demands that they must be produced to satisfy a sleeping population.” I find this statement oddly disappointing. It has a false ring to it, and not up to the high standard you have set for yourself with your previous posts. It sounds like second-hand, automatic FOF prejudice.

Before I joined the school, I saw people as people. While I was a member, I saw them as “sleeping machines.” In the years since I have left, I have re-discovered the pleasure in seeing them as people again. In fact, even as a member, I remember being shamed at times by my own small behavior in the face of a “life person’s” higher action. So much so that I often had to find a way to “buffer” the experience and explain it away. It was too humbling to bear. Now I am thankful at the generosity of lessons that come, not from an elite 2,000, but from everyone around me.

Thanks for listening.

==========
2b
on August 28, 2007 at 7:37 pm

“It’s very common for the victims to understand a system better than the people who are holding the stick.” -Noam Chomsky

“To some degree it matters who’s in office, but it matters more how much pressure they’re under from the public.” -Noam Chomsky

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80. Best of the Blog - July 27, 2010

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Anna
on August 28, 2007 at 9:37 pm

Fragments

1
(Beginning of the marriage; husband and wife have agreed that it it’s the higher right for him to stay in the Galleria (the Teacher’s home) for a while)
Student (Teacher’s male friend): I don’t know why you object… the sex is really not ‘pleasant’
Wife of student: It’s just that…
Student (Teacher’s male friend): I mean imagine yourself having to do it with a very fat old lady…
Wife of student: Perhaps you could just stop and be a normal student?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Well the idea is that this will accelerate the process.
Wife of student: Yes… but…
Student (Teacher’s male friend): I mean it’s awful; he covers his whole mouth and the lower part of his face with K-Y…

2
Wife of student (nervously): What did Robert say when you told him that I didn’t like… you know… your having sex with him?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): He paused briefly, looked surprised, and said “Oh this is her formatory mind, her king of clubs and her feminine dominance, everybody has them…
Wife of student: Oh…

3
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Every morning Robert drops in to the library where I sleep and… Well I’ve found a way to avoid this; I just set my alarm earlier and earlier and clear out of there as quick as I can…
Wife of student: Oh…

4
(Few months after end of marriage)
Student (Teacher’s male friend): I’ve got some news (clears throat) I’ve got Hepatitis B…
Ex-wife of student: What’s that?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Well it’s a liver disease, like hepatitis A which you get from food… my eyes are yellow and I feel tired.
Ex-wife of student: How is it transmitted?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Normally through sex… but this is a real mystery.
Ex-wife of student: Couldn’t you have got it from Robert?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Oh no, that’s not possible, you wouldn’t understand… Umm… You’ll have to have a blood test, and then take a course of medication for a few months… just in case…. Yes. The good thing is that I don’t have to have sex with him at the moment: at least not as long as I’m in quarantine.

==========

81. Agent 45 - July 27, 2010

#80
Hilarious!
Who says there’s no justice?

82. Best of the Blog - July 27, 2010

==========
BRAINWASHED?
on August 30, 2007 at 5:02 am

FELLOWSHIP OF FRIENDS
LEADER
ROBERT EARL BURTON

Robert Burton created Fellowship of Friends to celebrate the intellect
and offer a haven from nuclear holocaust. But claims of a sex scandal have prompted many members to leave.

They have been led on this journey for 25 years by Robert Earl Burton, a former schoolteacher who has guided everything from when his followers bear children to what sort of shoes they wear. Burton tells members he speaks with 44 angels who watch over his flock–among them Abraham Lincoln, Plato and Jesus Christ–believers say. Burton also has predicted that Apollo will be the lone surviving outpost after a global nuclear holocaust in 2006.

Disillusioned former members say the fellowship is more than just
another California curiosity. A growing number of them–as well as
some academics–call it a cult that entraps its mostly well-educated
members with a false promise of spiritual evolution. A recently ended lawsuit and accounts from ex-members echo that claim and add another: Burton, they say, has for years seduced young males in the group.

The suit and similar allegations by other members have spurred dozens to leave the group. It was brought by a Marin County man who claims Burton first demanded sex from him at age 17. . .

http://www.rickross.com/groups/fof.html

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Next… page 20

83. Best of the Blog - July 27, 2010

Page 20…
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Innernaut
on August 30, 2007 at 2:52 pm

As to the recent discussions of the “demonization of the human body,” I experienced a great many problems with this area when I joined the Fellowship of Friends. Back in 1981, at least on the East Coast where I joined, there was a very strong current of “Puritanism,” for lack of a better word. The “do what the machine does not wish to do” thing was going very strong. For me, this led quite naturally to something like this: if I was “doing what the machine wished to do,” say, eating a bowl of ice cream, then I wasn’t working on myself. And because I wasn’t making efforts to struggle with the instinctive center at that moment, I felt guilty. Soon, I began waking up in the morning with a knot in my stomach as I remembered all the times I had failed to make efforts the previous day — a great way to start the day!

A war began inside of me. One part felt guilty all the time, and another, saner part tried to talk with the guilty part and try to convince it this wasn’t reasonable. But I learned that the pathological part couldn’t be reasoned with, after years of going in internal circles. Ultimately, I became so miserable that I left the school. I didn’t even know anything about Robert’s corruption, but I had figured out that this insane taskmaster inside myself did not represent any kind of true work on myself. The relief I felt on leaving was being able to immediately jettison all that junk.

Most students that I talked to about this couldn’t seem to understand what I was talking about, or at least they claimed not to. But there were a very few students who undestood what I was going through. Stanley R once said to me, “Work ‘I’s don’t nag,” which I thought was brilliant, because that was the crux of the problem. But it wasn’t enough to overcome the power of the guilt-monster, so I left. It came down to this — that the only part of me that wanted to stay was this hideous Puritan that wanted to put my instinctive center in stocks in the public square. Forget about it!

I guess I should be thankful I couldn’t overcome the guilt, because otherwise I might have stayed even longer.

Thanks to all of you here.

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84. WhaleRider - July 27, 2010

ton:
Thanks for “Stripping the Gurus”

Here’s a gem:

“My life was forever altered by my experience in a [so-called] religious cult. Not only did I abandon my passions in life, I spent fifteen years following someone else’s path. When I finally awakened from my enchantment, I found myself with near-zero self-esteem, a lot of regret for many wasted years, and plenty of anger at my own naïvete, as well as being furious with my former group. I felt that a gigantic chunk of my real identity had been stolen from me without my conscious consent. At the same time, I felt a euphoric sense of freedom and complete delight that I now had my life back in my own hands (Goldhammer, 1996). “

85. veramente - July 27, 2010

80 4
(Few months after end of marriage)
Student (Teacher’s male friend): I’ve got some news (clears throat) I’ve got Hepatitis B…
Ex-wife of student: What’s that?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Well it’s a liver disease, like hepatitis A which you get from food… my eyes are yellow and I feel tired.
Ex-wife of student: How is it transmitted?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Normally through sex… but this is a real mystery.
Ex-wife of student: Couldn’t you have got it from Robert?
Student (Teacher’s male friend): Oh no, that’s not possible, you wouldn’t understand… Umm… You’ll have to have a blood test, and then take a course of medication for a few months… just in case…. Yes. The good thing is that I don’t have to have sex with him at the moment: at least not as long as I’m in quarantine.

—————————————-
not a reassuring thought: Robert Burton could be easily spreading any sort of viruses…and you know how that goes

86. WhaleRider - July 27, 2010

Viruses Approved for Ark

ORGAN DONOR HOUSE, California (USA) – In order to be passed onto future generations of worthy and evolved souls, the Fellowship of Friends, Inc., a quasi-religious doomsday cult headquartered in the Yuba County foothills, has formally approved both the Herpes and Hepatitis viruses for inclusion in their “ark” intended “to survive the collapse of civilization at the end of this age”, as their canons assert.

To that end the cult has established a network of world-wide satellite centers in order to cultivate only the very finest strains of the two “gold alchemy” viruses.

Both viruses infect humans and other primates and are primarily transmitted through contact with infected blood, tissue, and other body fluids.

Members are encouraged to spread the viruses among themselves by practicing daily unsafe sex with multiple partners including the founder, Robert E. Burton, each other’s wives, husbands, girlfriends, boyfriends, pets, and anything else that moves, reportedly including the several female camels kept on the secluded property.

87. X-ray - July 27, 2010

#80

‘not a reassuring thought: Robert Burton could be easily spreading any sort of viruses…and you know how that goes’

And actually he is, and older students swallowing the medical bill, while younger students letting him to swallow their sperm.

88. X-ray - July 27, 2010

..and also swallowing his sperm.

89. Yo - July 28, 2010

The following is the synopsis of an old episode of the Twilight Zone.

It’s the year 2015. An expedition has been stranded on planet V9-Gamma for 45 years in the remote outpost called Oregon House. The expedition’s leader, Captain Burton, has maintained strict discipline, refusing to allow his people to give up hope in the harsh, desolate environment. When rescue finally arrives, Burton is unable to relinquish his iron control and tries to convince the others to stay. Everyone else eventually chooses to return home, but he stubbornly elects to remain behind.

On the day the people board the ship Common Sense, Colonel Sloane and Burton’s second-in-command Al Baines search for Burton to give him one last chance to change his mind, but he is nowhere to be found. After they finally give up and leave, Burton emerges from the top of the cave that had sheltered his people. As the ship prepares for departure, Burton pretends his people are still there. Then, remembering the beauty of Earth, he realizes that he wants to go home. He rushes out screaming for the ship to come back, but it is too late. He is now stranded in Oregon House, completely alone in the bleak, empty landscape of the Twilight Zone.

Closing Narration

Robert Burton, who had prerogatives; he could lead, he could direct, dictate, judge, legislate. It became a habit, then a pattern, and finally a necessity. Robert Burton; once a god, now a population of one.

90. Ames Gilbert - July 28, 2010

Anna said,

Ex-wife of student: How is it transmitted?

Student (Teacher’s male friend): Normally through sex… but this is a real mystery.

Ex-wife of student: Couldn’t you have got it from Robert?

Student (Teacher’s male friend): Oh no, that’s not possible, you wouldn’t understand…

The real mystery is the uncritical, magical thinking that goes on in the Fellowship of Friends, as orchestrated by Burton. Here we have a slimy maggot of a fellow who has shown he is depraved, shallow and untrustworthy innumerable times, who has beaten his wife, risked her life (and those of any future children) by casually bringing home at least one horrible disease, and after finally having got rid of her, tries to persuade her one last time that it is her reason which is at fault, though she understands only too well.
And what has he got for servicing Burton so ass-iduously over the years? Nothing but mental and physical contamination, he didn’t even get put on Burton’s ever-changing ‘A’ list of ‘future conscious beings’ for all his trouble!

From Wikipedia:
Hepatitis B is an infectious illness which infects the liver and causes an inflammation called hepatitis. About a third of the world’s population, more than 2 billion people, have been infected with the hepatitis B virus. This includes 350 million chronic carriers of the virus.
The acute illness causes liver inflammation, vomiting, jaundice and—rarely—death. Chronic hepatitis B may eventually cause liver cirrhosis and liver cancer—a fatal disease with very poor response to current chemotherapy. The infection is preventable by vaccination.
Although replication takes place in the liver, the virus spreads to the blood where virus-specific proteins and their corresponding antibodies are found in infected people. Blood tests for these proteins and antibodies are used to diagnose the infection.

Acute infection begins with general ill-health, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, body aches, mild fever, dark urine, and then progresses to development of jaundice. The illness lasts for a few weeks and then gradually improves in most affected people. A few patients may have more severe liver disease (fulminant hepatic failure), and may die as a result of it.
Chronic infection with hepatitis B virus may be either asymptomatic or may be associated with a chronic inflammation of the liver (chronic hepatitis), leading to cirrhosis over a period of several years. This type of infection dramatically increases the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer). Chronic carriers are encouraged to avoid consuming alcohol as it increases their risk for cirrhosis and liver cancer. Hepatitis B virus has been linked to the development of Membranous glomerulonephritis (MGN)

Transmission of hepatitis B virus results from exposure to infectious blood or body fluids containing blood. Possible forms of transmission include unprotected sexual contact, blood transfusions, re-use of contaminated needles & syringes, and vertical transmission from mother to child during childbirth. Without intervention, a mother who is positive for HBsAg confers a 20% risk of passing the infection to her offspring at the time of birth. This risk is as high as 90% if the mother is also positive for HBeAg. HBV can be transmitted between family members within households, possibly by contact of nonintact skin or mucous membrane with secretions or saliva containing HBV.

91. surelyujest - July 28, 2010

Girard, proponent of following Robert’s commands as a dog obeys his master, takes his message to the people with a song:

92. nige - July 28, 2010

I continue to learn as a teacher – not a ‘spiritual’ guru, self-promoting, self-declared, enlightened being – but as a proponent of skills in precious metals.

My students today were wonderful – all with several years experience, either through being with me for that time or with experience with other crafters. I realized (I hope I do not boast) what a wealth of experience I have to impart. It is on days like these that I feel able to tell blog-visitors that one can have an experience of a higher order that brings together ALL THE THINGS, IN ONE’S LIFE, THAT ONE HAS LEARNED.

I feel I was, during my time in the FOF, one of the lucky ones who was not so emotionally or intellectually or, especially so, physically harmed, but only so much financially ‘fleeced’, but there could have been a tragic end to my life if, on the 11 June 1989, another member of the FOF, who is now herself and ex-member and thriving in the Bay Area had not been guided by higher forces to save me from my suicide attempt.

I really do not know how much anyone has to do, and especially after leaving, through conscience-derived action, the Fellowship, to come to a sense of Self-Serving-The-Higher-Good-And_Humanity but it is the wish I would want to offer any human being I come across.

Rodney Colling used to talk about becoming a ‘professional student’ as a pitfall and that one must take one’s part and stand in LIFE, fully and deeply, otherwise it makes a mockery of the term ‘The Fourth Way’.

To everyone I would request – question your Self as you find it and see where your True Allegiance lies…..Nigel.

93. nige - July 28, 2010

I included this passage from “Lines Written a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey”, by William Wordsworth, in an attempt to describe a higher state, in my final essay for my Certificate in Education, which was entitled – “Using Bipolar Affective Disorder in the Teaching of Craft Design”…..Nigel.

“And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with a joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean, and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man,
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things. Therefore am I still
A lover of the meadows and the woods,
And mountains: and of all that we behold
From this green earth: of all the mighty world
Of eye and ear, both what they half-create,
And what perceive; well pleased to recognize
In nature and the language of the sense,
The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart, and soul
Of all my moral being.”

94. nige - July 29, 2010

The Mind (or should I say, the Mind’s Eye, or Presence) can be one’s best friend, or one’s worst enemy. Softened by the interactions of the day and what it experiences, there is the chance of a nourishing, gentle night’s sleep. But this strong full-moon and the impact of a superb day’s teaching and the success of the students has created a physical tiredness coupled with an alert state. Gurdjieff said to Ouspensky, when O. was experiencing ‘facts’ – “What do you expect. This is what you came for. You are not asleep now.” I have taken my anti-psychotics an hour and a half ago but still no calming of the psyche. All of you should be asking – “Are you getting what you came to the FOF for?”…..Nigel.

95. nige - July 30, 2010

Wikipedia definition…..

A guru (Sanskrit: गुरु) is one who is regarded as having great knowledge, wisdom and authority in a certain area, and who uses it to guide others (teacher). In Sanskrit gu means darkness & ru means light. As a principle for the development of consciousness it leads the creation from unreality to reality, from the darkness of ignorance to the light of knowledge. In its purest form this principle manifests on earth as a divine incarnation (saint), a person with supreme knowledge about God and all creation. Other forms of manifestation of this principle also include parents, school teachers, non-human objects (books) and even one’s own intellectual discipline.

In the religious sense the term is commonly used in Hinduism and Sikhism, as well as in other Indian religions and new religious movements. Finding a true guru is often held to be a prerequisite for attaining self-realization. Guru Nanak, founder of the Sikh religion said: “Even if a thousand suns and moons rose, they would be unable to remove the darkness of ignorance within the heart. This can only be removed through the grace of the Guru.”

In contemporary India, the word “guru” is widely used with the general meaning of “teacher”. In Western usage, the meaning of guru has been extended to cover anyone who acquires followers, though not necessarily in an established school of philosophy or religion. In a further Western extension, guru is used to refer to a person who has authority because of his or her perceived secular knowledge or skills, such as in business.

96. nige - July 30, 2010

from definition of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (Wikipedia)…..

Pathological narcissism occurs in a spectrum of severity. In its more extreme forms, it is narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). NPD is considered to result from a person’s belief that they are flawed in a way that makes them fundamentally unacceptable to others. This belief is held below the person’s conscious awareness; such a person would typically deny thinking such a thing, if questioned. In order to protect themselves against the intolerably painful rejection and isolation that (they imagine) would follow if others recognized their supposedly defective nature, such people make strong attempts to control others’ view of them and behavior towards them.

Pathological narcissism can develop from an impairment in the quality of the person’s relationship with their primary caregivers, usually their parents, in that the parents were unable to form a healthy, empathic attachment to them.[citation needed] This results in the child conceiving of themselves as unimportant and unconnected to others. The child typically comes to believe they have some personality defect that makes them unvalued and unwanted.

Narcissistic personality disorder is isolating, disenfranchising, painful, and formidable for those living with it and often those who are in a relationship with them. Distinctions need to be made among those who have NPD because not each and every person with NPD is the same. Even with similar core issues, the way in which one’s individual narcissism manifests itself in his or her relationships varies.[citation needed]

To the extent that people are pathologically narcissistic, they can be controlling, blaming, self-absorbed, intolerant of others’ views, unaware of others’ needs and of the effects of their behavior on others, and insistent that others see them as they wish to be seen.

People who are overly narcissistic commonly feel rejected, humiliated and threatened when criticised. To protect themselves from these dangers, they often react with disdain, rage, and/or defiance to any slight criticism, real or imagined. To avoid such situations, some narcissistic people withdraw socially and may feign modesty or humility. In the case of feeling the lack of admiration, adulation, attention and affirmation the person can also manifest wishes to be feared and to be notorious (narcissistic supply).

Though individuals with NPD are often ambitious and capable, the inability to tolerate setbacks, disagreements or criticism, along with lack of empathy, make it difficult for such individuals to work cooperatively with others or to maintain long-term professional achievements. With narcissistic personality disorder, the person’s perceived fantastic grandiosity, often coupled with a hypomanic mood, is typically not commensurate with his or her real accomplishments.

97. nige - July 30, 2010

from Wikipedia definition of sociopath/psychopath…..

Psychopathy (pronounced /saɪˈkɒpəθi/) is a personality disorder characterized by an abnormal lack of empathy combined with strongly amoral conduct, masked by an ability to appear outwardly normal. Neither psychopathy, nor the similar concept of sociopathy, are currently defined in international diagnostic manuals, which instead describe a category of antisocial/dissocial personality disorder. However, researcher Robert Hare, whose Hare Psychopathy Checklist is widely used, describes psychopaths as “intraspecies predators”. Also R.I. Simon uses the word predator to describe psychopaths. Elsewhere Hare and others write that psychopaths “use charisma, manipulation, intimidation, sexual intercourse and violence” [verification needed] to control others and to satisfy their own needs. Hare states that: “Lacking in conscience and empathy, they take what they want and do as they please, violating social norms and expectations without guilt or remorse”. He previously stated that: “What is missing, in other words, are the very qualities that allow a human being to live in social harmony”.

According to Hare, many psychopaths are superficially charming, and can excellently mimic normal human emotion; some psychopaths can blend in, undetected, in a variety of surroundings, including corporate environments. According to some[who?], there is neither a cure nor any effective treatment for psychopathy; there are no medications that can instill empathy, while psychopaths who undergo traditional talk therapy only become more adept at manipulating others. However, other researchers suggest that psychopaths may benefit as much as others from psychological treatment, at least in terms of effect on behavior. According to Hare, the consensus among researchers in this area is that psychopathy stems from a specific neurological disorder which is biological in origin and present from birth although this was not what was reported by a 2008 review which instead indicated multiple causes and variation between individuals. Hare estimates that about one percent of the population are psychopaths.

98. nige - July 30, 2010

from Wikipedia, defintion of Spiritual Awakening…..

Religious experience (sometimes known as a spiritual experience, sacred experience, or mystical experience) is a subjective experience where an individual reports contact with a transcendent reality, an encounter or union with the divine.

A religious experience is most commonly known as an occurrence that is uncommon in the sense that it doesn’t fit in with the norm of everyday activities and life experiences, and its connection is with the individual’s perception of the divine. Studying religious experience objectively is a difficult task, as it is entirely a subjective phenomenon. However, commonalities and differences between religious experiences have enabled scholars to categorize them for academic study.

Many religious and mystical traditions see religious experiences as real encounters with God or gods, or real contact with other realities, while some hold that religious experience is an evolved feature of the human brain amenable to normal scientific study.

Differing religious traditions have described this fundamental religious experience in different ways:

Nullification and absorption within God’s Infinite Light (Chassidic schools of Judaism)
Complete detachment from the world (Kaivalya in some schools of Hinduism, including Sankhya and Yoga; Jhana in Buddhism)
Liberation from the cycles of Karma (Moksha in Sikhism, Jainism and Hinduism, Nirvana In Buddhism)
Deep intrinsic connection to the world (Satori in Mahayana Buddhism, Te in Taoism)
Union with God (Henosis in Neoplatonism and Theosis in Christianity, Brahma-Prapti or Brahma-Nirvana in Hinduism)
Innate Knowledge (Irfan and fitra in Islam)
Experience of one’s true blissful nature (Samadhi or Svarupa-Avirbhava in Hinduism)

99. Best of the Blog - July 30, 2010

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Brain Police
on August 31, 2007 at 12:18 am

Laura (24)

Masterfully put.

After many years of taking for granted that whatever I might think of it, the Fellowship will continue in much the same way it has, that nightmare scenarios aren’t realistic for this particular cult, and that the worst case scenario is that most people leave and Robert is left with a cultette of the hard-core, I, too, have lately found myself thinking that this may not be true. With Armageddon a dud and the Ark an anachronistic 70′s new-age fantasy, no likelihood that any further predictions will be believed even by the faithful, and even the prospect of carrying the torch of the Fourth Way to posterity fallen by the wayside, what does Robert have left as a cosmic organizing principle to keep the flock together?

Sure, some will continue to believe the Fellowship is the “only conscious school on Earth” or some such fairy tale, but even that is looking threadbare, with the makeover that seems to want to ride the coattails of the Power of Now. I’m not predicting a huge wave of departures (although it wouldn’t surprise me), but it does seem more than likely that the old magic just isn’t going to work much longer, blog or no blog. Even those that desperately want to believe can’t long push away the knowledge that the “teaching” has become gibberish, and that their “teacher” has some seriously inconvenient personal issues.

What’s an aging chicken hawk to do? Step aside, hand over the keys to Gerard and live out his days in a villa, surrounded by boys in silk? Maybe, but that attributes rationality and humility to someone whose track record in those departments is spotty. And even if he did, Gerard hasn’t the flair, charisma, or inspiration to run anything like the Fellowship except as a robotic lieutenant.

Things may get edgy as folks start sidling over to the exits.

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100. Best of the Blog - July 30, 2010

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CVB
on August 30, 2007 at 5:31 pm

Another Earnest Effort For Truth and Healing:

14/15 August, 2007

Dear Friends,
For nearly eight years, I was the wife of a “conscious being.” I witnessed the man I loved in grave psycho-spiritual decline. What happened to him is a tragedy. But what followed taught me a great deal about the organization of which I had been a member for 28 years.

My requests for help met buck-passing, denial, and rebuff; I was effectively silenced. The organization continued to enable and market this deeply troubled man for its own fundraising purposes. It is apparent that a few decision-makers know the truth, but the top priority is that the show must go on. Clearly, after this experience, it was time to go back to the drawing board, and reexamine everything I knew and had believed.

When confronted with a lie of this magnitude, and the way it was managed by the organization, it’s a reasonable assumption that you haven’t stumbled across the only deception, or the biggest one. It would be facile to say I “uncovered” pandemic abuse, cowardice, dishonesty, and corruption – but perhaps they had always been in front of my face. Perhaps I merely stopped buffering them as side-issues. Certainly some situations have worsened over the years. In any case, I saw that vices and fraud are sanctioned at the top, imitated by others, and now inextricably entwined in the organizational DNA.

It’s one thing to tolerate these abuses for free. It’s another to finance them. Our checkbooks give assent and approval, as well as enabling their perpetuation.

Should I describe them in more detail, you would dismiss them as exaggerations. You would euphemize and excuse these facts as peripheral to a Grand Central Truth, as I once did. “Being present” is used as a drug to buffer accountability, which necessarily occurs over time.

Hence, I don’t know what to say anymore that might reach you. If I mention what I learned from my personal experiences, you will dismiss me as unable to “transform.” If I am emotional at all, you will accuse me of being “in the queens.” If I am not emotional, I will be in my king of clubs, or my “lower self,” or whatever the current jargon is. If I refer to any standard of decent human behavior that has held through all centuries in all societies, you will dismiss it reductively as “feminine dominance” or “morality I’s.” I hunt for words so that I won’t, as I am leaving, trigger associations that you will characterize as “the same old thing” – knowing you will refuse to consider that “the same old thing” might simply be the stubborn truth, and that’s why it persistently resurfaces. And if all else fails, the “worse for me if I am right.” Clearly, I won’t be heard. However, that does not absolve me of the obligation to speak. It does not exonerate my obligation to apologize.

I ask your forgiveness for my complicity, even as a spokeswoman for this organization. I ask your pardon for my own culpability in the spiritual destruction of so many others. My life has miraculously recovered, emotionally and spiritually, beyond anything I have merited – I earnestly wish the same remarkable regeneration for each of you.

What Gurdjieff calls “objective remorse” is not painless – but I promise that once you swallow the bitter pill, clarity follows. Have courage, and you will attract the help you need. On the other side of the anguish, grief, and fear, you will find gratitude, too – gratitude that you faced the truth even if it’s five minutes before your death, rather than five seconds after. I intend to spend my remaining time on this earth pursuing more diligently than ever the aims that brought me here.

I cannot say farewell, because my door remains open to you. I accept that yours may not be. Others have been patient with me; I will be patient with you. Above all, I am not trying to sell you anything.

Keep your eyes open. Don’t take any wooden nickels. Tell the truth. Listen to your conscience. Vaya con Dios (n., sing.)

Yours,
XXXXXXXX

“In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”

— Martin Luther King, Jr.

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101. Best of the Blog - July 30, 2010

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Dream Catcher
on August 30, 2007 at 10:10 pm

“There is nothing more dreadful than doubt. Doubt separates people. It is a poison that disintegrates friendships and breaks up pleasant relations. It is a thorn that irritates and hurts; it is a sword that kills.”
Budha

The fellowship of friends is now a place of mistrust

==========
Laura
on August 30, 2007 at 11:31 pm

Recently Purchasing Awakening and others have expressed serious concern about the future of the FoF. I personally find this very legitimate, and I can only hope that current members will disentangle themselves as soon as possible from what is more and more clearly Robert’s final descent into his personal hell. I have been playing with some personal visions and scenarios, and I’d like to share a few. The following are very personal considerations, please bear in mind that I am not at all an expert in the mythical fields in delve into and that the following are really just the moonstruck excretions of my sometimes overactive mind.

I find it fascinating to view the external changes in the form of the school as signs of Robert’s pathological narcissitic progression. The name changes of the property can be seen as significant keys to his particular state of mind. At the beginning of our history we ascend to Mount Carmel, sacred mountain to the prophet Elijah and to a number of masculine gods: Baal, Zeus, the God of Israel. Carmel is also a symbol of fertility and prosperity, and is associated with the virgin Mary. The name is usually interpreted as meaning “the vineyard or garden of God”. These are the fruitful, pioneer days, trasforming the land into vineyard and the students into grapevine. It is a time of camaraderie and of life in the wilderness, a time of shared struggles, a time of enthusiasm and enormous efforts. Robert is becoming more competent with his influence as a teacher and he starts approaching his students for sexual favors. At this point he is very good at keeping it quiet, and the more he discovers that he can get away with it, the more his nocturnal, predatorial nature keeps growing like weeds.

As soon as he can, RB, by now Robert Burton aka The Teacher, starts moving away from the place’s rough nature, from which he is totally disconnected anyway. He can bear very little of natural life, except in the stifled and civilized form of flower arrangements, bonsais and dwarf palms, and miniature poodles with bulgy eyes. RB also moves away from his students, as his little secret grows larger and larger. He needs a new place for himself and his favorites. He starts an endless chain of constructions and exhausting renovations, architectural fantasies, cathedrals in the desert, like so many absolute monarchs before him. We have moved to the Renaissance, a more classical society, a sophisticated synonym for rebirth. It is a very good name, one that allows him to indulge in his Leonardo fetish, harmonizing his Bernard Berenson inspired aesthetics with his regressive inner move towards paganism. Robert has magically shape-shifted into an Medici prince, a Greek scholar: he travels to Europe and buys antiques, he leads Symposiums for his beloveds, he pours them wine amongst the roses and clothes them in soft and silky Italian garments. He also encourages the arts, but only if they pertain to the past. But somehow even this is not good enough, the burden of teaching is becoming heavy. Robert the slut wants funfunfun, and he cannot stand the moral pressure of the stare of his adoring students. He starts looking for condos away fron the crowd, secluded golden retreats in Palm Springs and Tahoe. He wants to stay with his boys, all else has become a nuisance. Luckily he has Girard, who is willing to help him carry his cross as much as humanly and inhumanly possible.

Slowly, fade back in time, adjust the vision, aim a little higher, way up there, where the Sun God of Greece himself doeth shine. There is no sign of place anymore, no community. No Apolloville. The whole space is occupied by an archetypal figure, a young beautiful solar god, our pederastic emperor’s wet dream. Interestingly enough, Apollo is also a very pure, controlled, masculine god. It goes well with the daily side of the FoF, the daily cards and daily duties, the manicured gardens and unending octaves, the constant perfecting of details. “Efforts, more efforts” shouts the Queen from her castle. Oh yes, the proud and lofty, controlled and unfallible Priest/King, so much unlike his Dyonisian shadow, has transformed into a Queen, a deadly Medusa, an irresistible Siren. The truth is now in semi-open view, and RB keeps shamelessly pushing his debauched lifestyle upon his students, while at the same time continuously reaffirming his role as supreme infallible decision maker. The students are condemned to compensate for the collapse of RB’s conscience, they are constantly encouraged to keep making the efforts and sacrifices and exerce the self control that he is evermore unable to accomplish. The vampirization of his student’s essences increases exponentially, but he is never satisfied. The Teacher has actually relocated himself to that most horrible Buddhist Realm, the land of the Hungry Ghosts, characterized by greed, insatiable cravings and addictions. The Insatiable Queen is a Gollum,who wanders the soundproof chambers of her/his secret dungeon cooing “my precious, my precious” to the ring.

One more trick out of the hat, and lo and behold, the time machine moves back a few millennia and lands in the most sacred soil of the land of Egypt, in the sacred temples where the primal goddess herself dwells, beautiful all-powerful Isis, lady of life, love, maternal nourishment and great lady of the underworld. This name has evidently no factual relation with the lifestyle and values ecouraged within the community, nor with the Robert that others can see or worship, his outward persona. I think he uses it as a magic word and invocation against the all-evil king of clubs, a secret formula, an incantation, absolutely self-referential and self-delusional,

“Isis, represented in the Song of Solomon by the dark maid of Jerusalem, is symbolic of receptive nature – the watery, maternal principle which creates all things out of herself after impregnation has been achieved by the virility of the sun” (Manly P. Hall, Masonic, Hermetic, Quabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy).

“Let the blood of Isis, and the magical powers (or spirits) of Isis, and the words of power of Isis, be mighty to protect and keep safely this great god, and to guard him from him that would do unto him anything which he abominateth.”
From the Egyptian boook of the Dead

“Renowned for her skillful use of witchcraft and magic, Isis was particularly remembered by the Ancient Egyptians as ‘strong of tongue’, that is being in command of words of power ‘which she knew with correct pronunciation, and halted not in her speech, and was perfect both in giving the command and in saying the word’ ‘Egyptian Magic’. In short she was believed, by means of her voice alone, to be capable of bending reality and overriding the laws of physics” (Graham Hancock, Fingerprints of the Gods).

But the procreation is not taking place, the Fisher King rules over a wasteland, the vines are dying, the children are leaving, the gold is dwindling. A dark shadow is breathing on Robert-Isis’s neck, he is scared, even his own predictions scare him, no more Armageddon and sequence of civilizations to dream of, the time is getting shorther and shorter, long be, short be… There is only the Divine Present left , the Journey Forth to Isis never really reaches its goal, the energy is declining, the body is decaying, the pleasure is ever more painful. The shadow has taken over, the king of clubs is tightening its grip.

The Teacher has now moved beyond the realm of potentially meaningful human interaction. His students, and humanity at large, are mere objects, shadows, receptacles and inseminators, totally replaceable. The only experience the Robert-Isis chimera cares about is to worship the lingam. Not being able to emotionally resonate with the suffering of the community, and with the losses and deaths of his friends, he is just unable to spare a thought about any of this. Life as we mean it is actually meaningless to him at his point. Enslaved by his own demons, the insatiable vacuum of existential terror engulfs him. He cannot tell the truth, to ANYONE, so he’ll have to invent a lie. A bigger lie. One that is really unbeatable.

Now, what is the next inevitable move? The future is no option, since the future is murder. The present continues to elude. He goes even further in the past, some tens of millennias, into the caves of prehistory, where he is finally transfigured into the Divine Teacher. Here, in the fickle light of torches, he can still find traces of himself. Pubic hair, feces, long and short penises, sequences of numbers. But to no avail. The mirror is black, the stately home has turned into a labirynth. The king of clubs, the Bull-headed minotaur, the antediluvian crocodile is about to take his revenge. It’s swift and cunning, and runs always behind him, past the driver licenses and the 44 motel signs, past the meissen statuettes and the KY jelly, past the armani suits and the sounds of sucking, no matter how far backwards he runs, relentless pursuing, a dark ominous shadow. Will the murderous beast-king finally succeed in destroying the sinful bitch, the vulptuous mother? I have my own answer to that question, and it’s not a pretty one. I think that by now Robert’s split has reached cataclysmic proportions, and he’s not there to love anyone or listen to anyone or to stop any of his destructive behaviour. Whe are entering psycho territory here. I really wish he somehow gets another chance. I hope his students take good care of themselves and steer their ships away from the maelstrom.
Paradise is getting close indeed.

==========

102. nige - July 30, 2010

From ‘Rudolph Steiner and Anthroposophy’, by Roy Wilkinson…..

On Karma…..

“Somewhere in the back of each individual’s mind there lurks an ideal. It may take the form of material well-being; on a more philanthropic note it may be a striving to serve humanity; it may be the desire to take the path of spiritual development. Whatever it is, it will affect the soul condition of the human being and even the physiognomy. A spiritually advanced individual has a different facial expression from a less mature person.

The matters mentioned above with regard to learning and striving are concerned with the personality himself. But everyone on the Earth has contacts with other people, relations, friends, associates in one form or another. The relationships fluctuate. Some may end, others continue; new ones may develop. We ourselves may be obliged to some particular person and another is under obligation to us. No man is an island. Whatever attitude a man has, it affects his fellow humans and calls forth a reaction.

There is a further point. What a person does is not only of significance for himself and for other humans but for the world in general. If he pollutes the air, destroys or plants a tree, the world is affected. What is done today endures tomorrow and the deed affects subject and object. It becomes not only a part of that person’s destiny but of the destiny of the world.

We can expand these considerations to include a succession of incarnations.

In the life between death and rebirth the experiences of the former life are carried over into the spiritual world where they are worked upon in co-operation with higher beings and transformed into future destiny. Thus the next life on Earth is influenced and determined. What the human being brings into the world at birth in the way of powers and capacities must be considered as the effects of causes he himself engendered in previous incarnations. The forces from one incarnation become qualities and tendencies of soul in a new one. Lessons learnt and knowledge acquired become talents. Past deeds of evil and negative attitudes are compensated by pain and suffering; good deeds and selfless love by joy and good health. The present bodily constitution of the human being is as it is because of his past. He is in his present situation for the same reason and these matters were arranged in the spiritual world. However, effects and causes are not necessarily consecutive. Things may have to be worked out over several incarnations.

It must be appreciated that karma is not blind fate. Karma expresses the law of compensation. It is the law of moral retribution. He who is responsible for the cause meets the effect. St Paul expresses it thus: ‘Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.’ Karma is activity which has become destiny.

103. ton - July 30, 2010

A ROBERT BURTON
REPORT FROM KABUL

“…The sender said every word was direct from an official, “student eyes only,” monthly note-sheet, purporting it to be the actual words of… Robert Burton. Evidently they had picked up his newsletter… they were actually requesting my comments on it because I’d shot my wad off about Gurdjieff in this stupid article, and they wanted more. I also figured it could be from Burton himself, as a joke. You know, what do you do after you collect all those  paintings and sculptures? Collect more? Or goad some ex-guppies for a few laughs between giving conscious blow jobs and kicking people out for waking up….”   and etc

http://www.davearcher.com/magus.html

104. nige - July 30, 2010

from Walt Whitman…..

“Give me the pay I have served for,
Give me to sing the songs of the great Idea, take all the rest,
I have loved the earth, sun, animals, I have despised riches,
I have given alms to everyone that ask’d, stood up for the stupid and crazy, devoted my income and labor to others,
Hated tyrants, argued not concerning God, had patience and indulgence toward the people, taken my hat off to nothing known or unknown,
Gone freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young, and with the mothers of families,
Read these leaves to myself in the open air, tried them by trees, stars, rivers,
Dismiss’d whatever insulted my own soul or defiled my body,
Claim’d nothing to myself which I have not carefully claim’d for others on the same terms,”

(By Blue Ontario’s Shore)

105. WhaleRider - July 30, 2010

Feds Sue Oracle-Allege Fraud

106. Agent 45 - July 31, 2010

RE: #103 Very good stuff by/about Dave Archer

A line from one of my favorite movies, “A River Runs Through It”:
“Why is it that people who need help the most, won’t take it?”

107. quorum - August 1, 2010

Moderator,
In addition to Pathway to Presence and Fellowship of Friends, the marketing department is also recruiting with the following names :

Living Presence
Being Present

When you do a Fellowship of Friends search, the following sites show up at the top :

livingpresence. com
beingpresent. org

Based on its lack of prominence in searches for “Fellowship of Friends”, Pathway to Presence seems to be getting a lot less traffic. Apparently, that name isn’t getting any traction at this juncture…

Now I wonder why that would be.

108. nige - August 1, 2010

Some say that your soul is feminine…..

SUDDENLY (Billy Ocean)

I used to think that love was just a fairy tale
Until that first hello until that first smile
But if I had to do it all again I wouldn’t change a thing
Cause this love is everlasting

Suddenly life has new meaning to me
There’s beauty up above and things we never take notice of
You wake up and suddenly you’re in love

Girl you’re everything a man could want and more
One thousand words are not enough to say what I feel inside
Holding hands as we walk along the shore
Never felt like this before now you’re all I’m living for

Each day I pray this love affair would last forever

There’s beauty up above and things you never take notice of
You wake and suddenly you’re in love

109. fofblogmoderator - August 1, 2010

107 is new

110. nige - August 1, 2010

A soul is the incorporeal essence of a person or living thing. Many philosophical and spiritual systems teach humans are souls; some attribute souls to all living things and even inanimate objects (such as rivers); this belief is commonly called animism. The soul is often believed to exit the body and live on after a person’s death, and some religions posit that God creates souls.

The soul has often been deemed integral or essential to consciousness and personality, and may be synonymous with spirit, mind or self. Although the terms soul and spirit are sometimes used interchangeably, soul may denote a more worldly and less transcendent aspect of a person. According to psychologist James Hillman, soul has an affinity for negative thoughts and images, whereas spirit seeks to rise above the entanglements of life and death. The words soul and psyche can also be treated synonymously, although psyche has more physical connotations, whereas soul is connected more closely to spirituality and religion.

111. nige - August 1, 2010

Sorry! The above was from the Wikipedia definition…..Nigel.

112. nige - August 1, 2010

From “beingpresent.org”…..

“The Fellowship of Friends recognizes that the aim of all true religions and spiritual traditions has always been the same: to reach God (GODDY POSITION) and sustain the Divine Presence (YOUNG, PRETTY, HETEROSEXUAL MALE’S PHALLUS) within one. This is the art and science of awakening (TO DEBAUCHED AND OPULENT LIFESTYLES).

We invite you to learn more about our spiritual (AND OTHER SUBTERRANEAN) practices by attending an introductory meeting at a center nearest you where you can speak directly (AND, IF YOU HAVE ANY COMMON SENSE, ASK SOME SEARCHING QUESTIONS ABOUT ROBERT EARL BURTON, THE SO-CALLED TEACHER) with members. You can use the links on our site to read about the principles of awakening (AND HOW THE MEMBERS OF THE FELLOWSHIP OF FRIENDS AVOID THESE IN DEFERENCE TO THE WHIMS OF REB), the great religious traditions in search of Divine Presence and the role of a spiritual Teacher (OF HOMOSEXUAL PERVERSION) in our life.”

Have a question? Take a moment to look over answers to frequently asked questions.

113. nige - August 1, 2010

107 quorum

Here is the ‘pivotal crap’ that many have been fed (and which has caused many to question enough to leave the FOF). It certainly ‘agitates my viscera’ (Don Govanni by Mozart)…..Nigel

“Presence is the act of separating the Higher Self from the lower self. In these moments we lift the veil and see through our third eye, without experiencing our lives through the filter of the lower self, with all its opinions and reactions. But it is a momentary separation, and only with long work and effort can we learn to prolong such moments and keep the veil lifted.

And if one moment of presence brings so much, then prolonged presence, and finally, a permanent state of presence, must mean an entirely new kind of being, something all spiritual traditions try to describe: “enlightenment,” “awakening,” “nirvana,” and “the kingdom of Heaven.”

Although it sounds unattainable, it is accessible now. The more we increase our ability to be present, the more our lives will be transformed. Presence allows us to work from the inside out, rather than the outside in. Why try to change the outside, the lower self, which will only die? Our Higher Self connects us to the divine, and it alone has the possibility of surviving death.”

ONE BIG QUESTION…..
IF THE HIGHER SELF MAKES ITSELF MANIFEST (EITHER IN MOMENTS OR COMPLETELY), WHY DOES IT NEED TO VISIT THE PHYSICAL WORLD? (SEEMS LIKE A LOAD OF TRASH, THIS LOWER/HIGHER STUFF.

114. nige - August 1, 2010

Having reviewed all the links on the site, ‘livingpresence.com’ seems to make me think…..

“Is the aim of the Fellowship of Friends to feel special, presently?”

115. X-ray - August 1, 2010

113. nige – August 1, 2010

“Presence is the act of separating the Higher Self from the lower self. In these moments we lift the veil and see through our third eye, without experiencing our lives through the filter of the lower self, with all its opinions and reactions. But it is a momentary separation, and only with long work and effort can we learn to prolong such moments and keep the veil lifted.

And if one moment of presence brings so much, then prolonged presence, and finally, a permanent state of presence, must mean an entirely new kind of being, something all spiritual traditions try to describe: “enlightenment,” “awakening,” “nirvana,” and “the kingdom of Heaven.”

Although it sounds unattainable, it is accessible now. The more we increase our ability to be present, the more our lives will be transformed. Presence allows us to work from the inside out, rather than the outside in. Why try to change the outside, the lower self, which will only die? Our Higher Self connects us to the divine, and it alone has the possibility of surviving death.”

Is this a parody or real?

116. nige - August 1, 2010

115 X-ray

Verbatim, from one of the links at the top of the home page. Honest, mate!…..Nigel

(And, quite honestly too, I cannot think how I would live without my body and all its’ functions).

livingpresence.com…..

117. nige - August 1, 2010

Actually, REB is quite musical…..he plays the organ!…..Nigel.

118. nige - August 1, 2010

From ‘Awaken in the Dream’, by Paul Levy…..

C. G. Jung, the great doctor of the soul and one of the most inspired psychologists of the twentieth century, had incredible insight into what is currently playing out, both individually and collectively, in our modern-day world. He writes, “If, for a moment, we look at mankind as one individual, we see that it is like a man carried away by unconscious powers.” We are a species carried away — “possessed” by — and acting out, the unconscious. Jung elaborates, “Possession, though old-fashioned, has by no means become obsolete; only the name has changed. Formerly they spoke of ‘evil spirits,’ now we call them ‘neurosis’ or ‘unconscious complexes.’” To condescendingly think that we, as modern-day, rational people, are too sophisticated to believe in something as primitive as demons is to have fallen under the spell of the very evil spirits we are imagining are nonexistent. What the ancients call demons are a psychic phenomena which compel us to act out behaviors contrary to our best intentions. To quote Jung, “…the psychic conditions which breed demons are as actively at work as ever. The demons have not really disappeared but have merely taken on another form: they have become unconscious psychic forces.”

Sound close to home, REB?…..Nigel.

119. X-ray - August 2, 2010

‘How to describe a conscious teacher? His only true credentials are his own presence and his effect upon his students. He does what no one else will do or can do—teaching the most unpopular of all truths: that our illusory sense of “I” must die before presence can be born. He is the living reminder that it is possible to awaken, and that presence means humility, acceptance, and conscious love.’

http://livingpresence.com/who-we-are/Robert-Burton.html

Give me a fucking break!

120. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

==========
Ames Gilbert
July 28, 2010

Anna said,

“Ex-wife of student: How is it transmitted?

Student (Teacher’s male friend): Normally through sex… but this is a real mystery.


Ex-wife of student: Couldn’t you have got it from Robert?

Student (Teacher’s male friend): Oh no, that’s not possible, you wouldn’t understand… ”

– – –

The real mystery is the uncritical, magical thinking that goes on in the Fellowship of Friends, as orchestrated by Burton. Here we have a slimy maggot of a fellow who has shown he is depraved, shallow and untrustworthy innumerable times, who has beaten his wife, risked her life (and those of any future children) by casually bringing home at least one horrible disease, and after finally having got rid of her, tries to persuade her one last time that it is her reason which is at fault, though she understands only too well.

And what has he got for servicing Burton so ass-iduously over the years? Nothing but mental and physical contamination, he didn’t even get put on Burton’s ever-changing ‘A’ list of ‘future conscious beings’ for all his trouble!

– – –
From Wikipedia:
Hepatitis B is an infectious illness which infects the liver and causes an inflammation called hepatitis. About a third of the world’s population, more than 2 billion people, have been infected with the hepatitis B virus. This includes 350 million chronic carriers of the virus.

The acute illness causes liver inflammation, vomiting, jaundice and—rarely—death. Chronic hepatitis B may eventually cause liver cirrhosis and liver cancer—a fatal disease with very poor response to current chemotherapy. The infection is preventable by vaccination.
Although replication takes place in the liver, the virus spreads to the blood where virus-specific proteins and their corresponding antibodies are found in infected people. Blood tests for these proteins and antibodies are used to diagnose the infection.

Acute infection begins with general ill-health, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, body aches, mild fever, dark urine, and then progresses to development of jaundice. The illness lasts for a few weeks and then gradually improves in most affected people. A few patients may have more severe liver disease (fulminant hepatic failure), and may die as a result of it.

Chronic infection with hepatitis B virus may be either asymptomatic or may be associated with a chronic inflammation of the liver (chronic hepatitis), leading to cirrhosis over a period of several years. This type of infection dramatically increases the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer). Chronic carriers are encouraged to avoid consuming alcohol as it increases their risk for cirrhosis and liver cancer. Hepatitis B virus has been linked to the development of Membranous glomerulonephritis (MGN)

Transmission of hepatitis B virus results from exposure to infectious blood or body fluids containing blood. Possible forms of transmission include unprotected sexual contact, blood transfusions, re-use of contaminated needles & syringes, and vertical transmission from mother to child during childbirth. Without intervention, a mother who is positive for HBsAg confers a 20% risk of passing the infection to her offspring at the time of birth. This risk is as high as 90% if the mother is also positive for HBeAg. HBV can be transmitted between family members within households, possibly by contact of nonintact skin or mucous membrane with secretions or saliva containing HBV.

==========

121. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

==========
Ames Gilbert
on August 31, 2007 at 2:11 pm

Dear CVB (#20-11),
Thank you for sharing your “farewell letter” with us. I appreciate your honesty and your courage.

Although you may feel that ‘plowing the same ground’ may not yield fruit amongst those you know in the FoF, I sincerely believe that this is not entirely correct, especially if you believe your observations to be the ‘stubborn truth’. Although the initial reactions from ‘telling it like it is’ may not seem favorable at the time, it does make a difference. The impressions do sink in, you are heard, whether acknowledged or no. Your message is available for future use, even if immediate results don’t seem apparent. I ask you to share more, not less, of your personal story. How did you get to where you are? Tell us more of the trail of insights that led you here. Give us examples of how the buffers are dissolved, what happened when opposing sets of facts met. I think you can share information about how lies are managed by the organization, or how vice and fraud are sanctioned, for instance, without personal rancor. For that matter, if you are angry, you are welcome to share that, too.

You are a talented communicator, and I don’t think that you will invalidate or dilute the intense personal experiences you are having by sharing what is appropriate. For myself, I find writing a really useful tool to help me gain clarity and understanding.

It seems to me that many of us are taking the spiritual equivalent of a cold shower; uncomfortable, but bracing and immediate. The blog is like a communal cold shower, with lots of gasping, shrieking, laughs, and cries of “pass the soap!”.

For me, where we are (the results of our past actions and interactions) is ‘a’ Big Truth, if you see what I mean; and specifically, for each of us as individuals, where we are in any given moment is ‘The’ Big Truth, if we care to look impartially. I don’t know if it is necessary or possible to seek beyond this; where can you go from Now?

I send blessings and encouragement to you,
Ames

=========

122. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

==========
Way.of.the.Slow.Man
on September 1, 2007 at 6:02 am

I hope current members of the FOF are reading this.
For those who are still questioning, not only can you graduate from the FOF and leave the non-prophet organization but you can thrive and grow spiritually.

I was in for 7 years, left 20+ years ago. Sent to open two new centers, captured only one new student (who stayed for 3 weeks) and I wondered why anyone would deliberately want to do this stuff. I guess our new centers weren’t as convincing as the center where I joined– which was remote from RB/Renaissance and crewed by students who were really trying to do the work.

I joined the FOF because the concepts and work were interesting and because my fellow students were sincere, were teaching each other and were trying to live the work together. After a few years realized if RB was conscious, he was not a conscious model I wanted to emulate.

One or so years in the FOF working with other sincere students should be enough to ground the work and graduate. Why does no one ever graduate from the FOF?

The real fellowship of friends is actually this discussion list, the Greater Fellowship list and the friends and spiritual travelers in and out of the FOF.

The FOF is not the way of the sly man, its for the slow man. … those who need 2x4s up alongside the head repeatedly to get the message. It took seven years of thumps for me but eventually I got the message- there’s real life outside.

==========

123. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

==========
Elena
on September 1, 2007 at 6:13 pm

. . . I wonder to what extent Robert called it “feminine dominance” because of his own misogyny and hoped it would get blown up into pieces so that he could get to violate every act of love and not have it questioned by women or men.

Wasn’t “love” in the end what was termed feminine dominance in the fellowship?

Or the expectation the guys might have had of not just being used sexually? or the women of being included not just as efficient money makers? or the large mass of students as individuals who could be heard by their teacher instead of being treated like a mass of sleeping machines not worth attention individually with the excuse that the conscious being had too much on his hands?

==========
Yesri baba
on September 1, 2007 at 10:52 pm

. . . It seems there is a subtle, unconscious force that tends to cause people to behave in such a way as to not “make waves” and be accepted by others around them. It seems to be a formidable force. For some reason it was labeled “feminine dominance” by someone. In my opinion, that label has enabled a misogynistic distortion to occur. I don’t care for the term and don’t use it. . .

It also seems there is a force of violent assertion, a kind of macho, rugged , I’ll go my own way and fuck you individualism that has become (perhaps has always been) unbalanced and therefore maligned (misogyny, patriarchy) in the world.

. . . Both are distortions of the masculine and feminine in humanity which are probably of equal strength. Perhaps they can be harmonized within us to create a more full relationship to the world, or we can keep using them as hammers to beat each other with.

==========

124. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

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Bistro Fundraiser
on September 3, 2007 at 11:49 pm

The following excerpt is from the book by Haruki Murakami titled: “Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche”

Most of the defendants have lost all faith in Shoko Asahara as their guru. The leader they revered turned out to be nothing more than a false prophet, and they understand now how they were manipulated by his insane desires… Most of them refer now to their former leader simply as Asahara, dropping any honorific title. There’s even a hint of insult mixed in at times. I can’t believe these people sought to become involved in such a horrific, senseless act at the beginning. On the other hand, at a certain point in their lives they abandoned the world and sought a spiritual utopia in Aum Shinrikyo, something they do not repent or regret.

This is apparent when they are asked in court to clarify details of Aum doctrine and they quite often say something like, “Well, this may be difficult for ordinary people to comprehend, but…” They still believe that they are at a higher spiritual level than “ordinary people” and have a sense of being specially chosen… “If only he [Shoko Asahara] hadn’t gone over the edge we would have been able to pursue our religious goals peacefully and correctly, without bothering anyone.” In other words, “The results were bad, and we regret them. However, the basic aims of Aum Shinrikyo are not flawed, and we don’t feel there’s any need to reject them outright.”

This unwavering conviction in the “correctness of aims” is something I found not only in the Aum followers I interviewed, but even among those who have left and are now openly critical of the Aum organization. To all of them, I posed the same question, that is, whether they regretted having joined Aum. Almost everyone answered: “No, I have no regrets. I don’t think those years were wasted.” Why is that? The answer is simple — because in Aum they found a purity of purpose they could not find in ordinary society. Even if in the end it became something monstrous, the radiant, warm memory of the peace they originally found remains inside them and nothing else can easily replace it.

In that sense, the Aum path is still open to them. I don’t mean that former members are likely to return to the fold. They are aware now that it is a very flawed and dangerous system, and agree that the years they passed in Aum were filled with contradictions and defects. At the same time I got the impression that, to a greater or lesser degree, there is still within them an Aum ideal — a utopian vision, a memory of light, imprinted deep inside them. If one day something that contains a similar light passed before their eyes (it needn’t be a religion) what is inside them now will be pulled in that direction. In this sense what is most dangerous for our society at the moment is not Aum Shinrikyo itself, but other “Aum-like” entities.

After the Tokyo gas attack, society’s attention was drawn exclusively to Aum Shinrikyo. The question was asked over and over gain: “How could such elite, highly educated people believe in such a ridiculous, dangerous new religion?” Certainly it’s true that the Aum leadership was composed of elite people with distinguished academic credentials, so it’s little wonder that everyone was shocked to discover this…

More or less all of us want answers to the reasons why we’re living on this earth, and why we die and disappear. We shouldn’t criticize a sincere attempt to find answers. Still, this is precisely the point where a kind of fatal mistake can be made. The layers of reality begin to be distorted. The place that was promised, you suddenly realize, has changed into something different from what you’re looking for. As Mark Strand puts it in his poem: “The mountains are not mountains anymore; the sun is not the sun.”

In order that a second, and a third Ikuo Hayashi don’t crop up, it is critical for our society to stop and consider, in all their ramifications, the questions brought to the surface so tragically by the Tokyo gas attack. Most people have put this incident behind them. “That’s over and done with,” they say. “It was a major incident, but with the culprits all arrested it’s wrapped up and doesn’t have anything more to do with us.” However, we need to realize that most of the people who join cults are not abnormal; they’re not disadvantaged; they’re not eccentrics. They are the people who live average lives (and maybe from the outside, more than average lives), who live in my neighborhood. And in yours.

Maybe they think about things a little too seriously. Perhaps there’s some pain they’re carrying around inside. They’re not good at making their feelings known to others and are somewhat troubled. They can’t find a suitable means to express themselves, and bounce back and forth between feelings of pride and inadequacy. That might very well be me. It might be you.

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125. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

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‘ton
on September 3, 2007 at 11:49 pm

where was i? oh yes, maybe more to the point, again I apologize for the use of quotation marks — as opposed to ‘personal stories’ — and any sense engendered in you, dear reader, that i may be ‘beating a dead horse:’

“Imagine – if you can – not having a conscience, none at all, no feelings of guilt or remorse no matter what you do, no limiting sense of concern for the well-being of strangers, friends, or even family members. Imagine no struggles with shame, not a single one in your whole life, no matter what kind of selfish, lazy, harmful, or immoral action you had taken.

And pretend that the concept of responsibility is unknown to you, except as a burden others seem to accept without question, like gullible fools.

Now add to this strange fantasy the ability to conceal from other people that your psychological makeup is radically different from theirs. Since everyone simply assumes that conscience is universal among human beings, hiding the fact that you are conscience-free is nearly effortless.

You are not held back from any of your desires by guilt or shame, and you are never confronted by others for your cold-bloodedness. The ice water in your veins is so bizarre, so completely outside of their personal experience, that they seldom even guess at your condition.

In other words, you are completely free of internal restraints, and your unhampered liberty to do just as you please, with no pangs of conscience, is conveniently invisible to the world.

You can do anything at all, and still your strange advantage over the majority of people, who are kept in line by their consciences will most likely remain undiscovered. How will you live your life? What will you do with your huge and secret advantage, and with the corresponding handicap of other people (conscience)? The answer will depend largely on just what your desires happen to be…”

==========
Bistro Fundraiser
on September 4, 2007 at 12:10 am

‘Ton, found a link to your passage… There’s more…

http://www.cix.co.uk/~klockstone/spath.htm

“This excerpt is from: ‘The Sociopath Next Door: The Ruthless vs. the Rest of Us’ by Martha Stout Ph.D. (Broadway Books, New York, 2005, ISBN 0-7679-1581-X). Martha Stout is a clinical instructor at Harvard Medical School and elaborates on the tales of ruthlessness in everyday life based on her 25 years of practice as a specialist in the treatment of psychological trauma survivors.”

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126. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

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Joseph G
on September 2, 2007 at 7:11 pm

http://www.theonion.com/content/node/33123

Area Man Tired Of Making Excuses For Rapist Friend

OGALLALA, NE—After nearly a decade of friendship, Jake Fitzwater said Monday that he is getting sick of standing up for his buddy Raymond Bauer’s rapist behavior. “Whenever someone would accuse Ray of crossing the line, I used to say, ‘He doesn’t mean anything by it—that’s just Ray being Ray,'” Fitzwater said. “I thought he’d grow out of it, but I’ve known him for nine and a half years now, and he’s still at it. Defending him really puts me in an awkward position.” Fitzwater added that if Bauer fails to control his predilection for nonconsensual intercourse, he might skip the rapist’s Fourth of July barbecue.

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127. Best of the Blog - August 3, 2010

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Old Fish In The Sea
on September 4, 2007 at 7:15 am

The Fear of Spiritual Death

I have spoken to a number of students that have decided to stay in. All of them said that they questioned Robert, questioned the schools direction, but they were afraid that if they left that, being of an instinctive nature, they would soon descend into an instinctive biological existence.

This is the primary fear. The fear of making the ultimate mistake. The fear of losing that spark of being. The fear of becoming lazy. The fear of mechanicality. The fear of never again reaching those golden moments and losing the being that we all worked so hard to attain. The fear that without constant pressure (third force), the lower self will take over. The fear of spiritual death.

Now I am out, but the question remains, what now, what’s next? I speak a great deal about what I left because that is easier than speaking about where I am going. It is easier than facing the “I don’t know”. But somehow I feel certain that it was the right decision to step out into the unknown, out of the safe but painfully lacking cocoon. The cocoon that Robert created and I accepted, with walls of fear. The cocoon where we thought too much about ourselves and whether we were evolving and were afraid that we were not.

Time is short. There is much to learn. So many simple experiences to have. So much to embrace. It is time to let go of fof programming, to let go of the self deprecation and the deception, time to step out into the world – a life person ready to thrive, well prepared, ready to love and transform whatever comes my way.

It is time to clean the slate, holding what I know, but inviting presence in a new way – a way that is not so self indulgent, more free, more relaxed, certainly more loving, less judgemental and less afraid of what might happen if I don’t. It is time to make presence a love and not a duty.

The season has come. It is time to move even if it means risking my soul. Time to be normal, time to be human. What an adventure! Pushed out on the earthy ground with all of the other caterpillars. It is happening. Thankfully there is a great deal of support and love and I am happy.

==========

128. Tatyana - August 3, 2010

from livingpresence…

“Aren’t there other valid groups?

There are many paths, and many sincere seekers. At some point, we have to stop seeking and begin working. Otherwise all our searching only feeds the lower self, becoming something to display, an identity that makes us feel real. There may be a number of valid schools; at some point we have to work with one. The Fellowship does offer more than books, videos, lectures, discussions of higher ideas, or sessions of meditation or yoga. It offers a way of life. It is designed for those who want to make a focused commitment to the development of their own Higher Self, and who know that effort is required. Our teacher said, “No matter what school one is in, the question is: are you in a state of presence? If in imagination, one is not even in the school.”

“At some point, we have to stop seeking and begin working” I used to believe this statement. Funny, today I got a newsletter from Gurdgieff Foundation, they often call the Work “a Search”. Those folks are always seeking (observing, verifying…)

The living presence website does not mention a word about how much it is going to cost one to join. Isn’t it a better deal to be “in the state of presence” somewhere outside FOF since it “no matter what school one is in”?

129. X-ray - August 3, 2010

‘ There may be a number of valid schools;’

This is an advertisment lie.

Every student in the fof ‘knows’ and have heard that many many many times that FOF is the only real school on Earth and Burton is the only conscious teacher.

So please don’t give me this shit, it is sickening.

130. Tatyana - August 3, 2010

“Is there a fee to join?

There is a fee to join the Fellowship, paid on a month-to-month basis. The payment depends on a number of factors, such as where you live, your income, and your situation. (most people are paying $400–$500 a months plus seasonal donations) Membership donations are on a sliding (?) scale, so that newer members are required to pay less than older members (it is ‘sliding’ up after 3 months of being in). Every country has a different donation structure, so contact the center nearest you to find out more about the payment in your area.

I would like to join, but I don’t live near a center.

Wherever you join you immediately become connected to the body of the school. Weekly publications, videos of meetings, daily messages, and frequent communications from the teacher (such as group messages about fund raisers) and students are available to all members (for an additional fee). Of course, you are encouraged to visit other centers and Apollo whenever you can. Interestingly, circumstances often do change, even when we think it is impossible. When we are led by our desire to actualize our higher selves, things can fall into place in a quite unexpected way.

What if I don’t want to stay?

Membership in the Fellowship is on a month-to-month basis. Each month is a chance to assess if you have received something and if you want to join for another month. You can cease being a member of the Fellowship at any time by simply discontinuing the monthly teaching payment; however, you usually cannot return without making a re-entry donation (and also you go to the moon and will feel like you are buried alive and nobody is going to talk to you) Understanding does not come immediately, so it is good to give yourself some time to verify these ideas. There are students who have been in the Fellowship for forty years, and others who have just joined—all united in their pursuit of the present.” (so, in other words, prepare to join for life and pay what it takes…. whoaaa)

131. Tatyana - August 3, 2010

“our illusory sense of “I” must die before presence can be born”

This is just so creepy…

132. silentpurr - August 3, 2010

I imagine that the Spirits (if there are such things) of mr.G and mr.O smile knowingly at our prideful sense of accomplishment for having cleansed ourselves of the stickyness that was the FOF.
Have you ever stepped on sun-melted chewing gum?

133. X-ray - August 3, 2010

‘Have you ever stepped on sun-melted chewing gum?’

Yes, and always with same word followed: ‘oh shit’…

134. Josiane - August 3, 2010

128. Tatyana

“There are many paths, and many sincere seekers. At some point, we have to stop seeking and begin working. “

Interesting! With the current “teaching” that changes all the time and adds stuff so that people don’t have time to ponder the most recent statements that came from above, it seems to me that FoF students are forced to continue seeking, searching to find, develop, sustain, cultivate, maintain, improve the ever elusive state of Divine Presence, which, by the way, is always available, right here right now. Robert Burton needs for students to remain forever seeking, and they may even have been turned into spiritual egoistic seekers, although they will deny that. Paraphrasing Adyashanti: “ MY search, MY evolution, Me, Me, Me…”

“Otherwise all our searching only feeds the lower self, becoming something to display, an identity that makes us feel real.”

I read this one over and over and I still don’t get it. Can somebody please explain? I am dying to understand.

135. X-ray - August 4, 2010

“Otherwise all our searching only feeds the lower self, becoming something to display, an identity that makes us feel real.”

‘I read this one over and over and I still don’t get it. Can somebody please explain? I am dying to understand.’

You are trying to understand the nonessential.
It’s like trying to understand Burton’s teaching or Burton himself.

136. X-ray - August 4, 2010

..nonsensical and non-existent.

137. X-ray - August 4, 2010

The only thing which needs to be understood in regards to Burton, is that Burton is a criminal who must be brought to justice.

138. quorum - August 4, 2010

Not only has burton not been brought to Justice, his organization gets tax-free status as a non-profit religious organization. Talk about injustice. or as burton conveniently likes to say – “just is.”

I wonder why any religious organization receives tax free status, when the money is obviously being used in many religions to fill the pockets of a select few. It’s never really questioned though. It’s off-limits, taboo politically. There’s a political barrier to any discussion on the topic.

So that’s one thing. It’s entirely another thing to allow tax-free status to organizations like the Fellowship of Friends where there’s plenty of evidence that people – burton — are using the money in a destructive way with no qualms about lying, deceiving, and harming any of those in his supposed care.

Sometimes I think the strange political attitudes that allow so called religions to get a free pass might explain why the criminal investigators aren’t exactly banging the doors down to get the facts about burton. I wonder what it would take for burton to get their attention. I also wonder if that’s exactly what he’s doing – trying to get their attention.

although at this point he’s getting so old i’m not sure he has any idea what he’s doing. He’s a machine, running on auto drive, and yes he and the Fellowship of Friends are “accelerating.”

139. quorum - August 4, 2010

replace the word “old” with “senile”. gracefully growing old and sharing wisdom he is not.

140. X-ray - August 4, 2010

Yeah.. good point, quorum, and a valid question..

141. nige - August 4, 2010

138 quorum

The Constitution of the United States of America allows for so much ‘freedom’. Burton and the ‘high-ups’ in the FOF are free to get away with all forms of moral and ethical abuse. However, there is also, within the Constitution, freedom such as the press and media possess in their ability to print true stories about such cults and thus we, as a free entity blog, are free to offer stories and opinions about the FOF in an effort to warn others of the dangers of such organizations.

It seems to me that the Constitution would not cover such areas as sexual abuse and fiduciary duty and it only takes a few brave recently affected members of the the cult to come forward and tell their stories to the press. Then there would be the freedom for an investigative authority to ‘get in there’. Large-scale exposure in the press and media would give Buton et al. a touch of the ‘quivering sphincters’ and if the money were raised for a legal case, Burton would ‘crumble’ in court. the facade of his False Personality would not stand up to Due Process.

Nigel.

142. ton - August 4, 2010

a ‘graduate’ of the fof attempted to ridicule and insult by accusing me of being “in imagination” — this negative attitude toward imagination, (which is one of, if not THE greatest of human gifts), is a remnant of cult programming… mind control is the invisible fence that keeps the sheep from straying, and one facet of mind control is to condemn and stigmatize the gift of imagination. leaving the cult is one thing, but there are toxic side effects yet to contend with… damned invisible fences.

“All the works of man have their origin in creative fantasy. What right have we then to depreciate imagination.”
Carl Jung

143. WhaleRider - August 4, 2010

FOF cult-speak uses a pejorative and blanket, “one size fits all” type of definition of imagination to include all forms of imagination and fantasy, beneficial or not, as an unintentional process to be avoided, the antithesis of self-consciousness, when in fact it we are quite capable both of being self-aware while in such a creative process and of using the creative process consciously.

Being self-aware in an unconscious, psychotic process is an entirely different story.

To be fair, if we were to look at the underlying definition of “imagination” in a spiritual sense, promoted in the fourth way books, the term, IMO, was not actually referring to the idea of “creative imagination” as in the positive, Jungian sense so thoughtfully provided by ton, but as I understood it, was closer to the concept of “self-delusion”, as in the cult delusion that other ‘life people’ are deluded to think they are self-aware, when self-awareness by definition can only be self-evident to the individual.

Totalitarian regimes like North Korea, also place strict restrictions on artistic creation as cults do in order to assert the delusion that their ‘fatherly’ leader is acting in their best interest. Free artistic expression usually includes the creative expression of dissent, which is not tolerated by leaders with narcissistic personalities.

Ironically, from the cult perspective, it is more desirable and indeed a cult requirement for cult followers to take on and incorporate the delusions of another, in this case Burton’s delusions of grandeur and the delusion he promotes that everyone else on the planet is not as self-aware as he claims to be, than to learn ways to use imagination in a conscious, creative sense, such as using one’s imagination to create a different life circumstance for oneself. For instance, one would have to imagine being lawyer or a doctor first before making the effort to become one.

Imagination always entails suspending one’s disbelief and taking a step back from one’s limiting critical mind.

Isn’t that in fact what happens to cult followers during Burton’s freakish dinners and meetings? Imagine the aferlife…imagine spirits hovering over the dinner table…imagine a nuclear holocaust…imagine being eaten by the moon…imagine the old fart sucking your dick is an angel.

People living in glass houses shouldn’t throw toaster ovens.

144. carl - August 5, 2010

become yourself…..then god and the devil do not matter

145. Agent 45 - August 5, 2010

“Got brass in pocket
Got bottle, I’m gonna use it
Intention, I feel inventive
Gonna make you, make you, make you notice

Gonna use my arms
Gonna use my legs
Gonna use my style
Gonna use my sidestep
Gonna use my fingers
Gonna use my, my, my imagination

‘Coz I, gonna make you see
There’s nobody else here
No one like me ….”

Chrisse Hynde

146. ton - August 5, 2010

“Imagination is spiritual perception. Authenticity is spiritual presence… think of authenticity as the quality of expression, and imagination appears as the realm of Source, what authenticity draws upon. Or the other way round: authenticity gives us the impulse, imagination gives us the image. We need the courage of authenticity to carry the originality of imagination into expression. Whichever way you want to figure it, imagination and authenticity are the double-doors to creation… Imagination is a bridge between our ordinary senses and the archetypal world which transcends the senses.”
M.C. Richards

147. fofblogmoderator - August 5, 2010

144 is new

148. nige - August 6, 2010

In fact. can you ‘imagine’ any of the conscious beings creating their works without ‘imagination’?…..Nigel

149. X-ray - August 6, 2010

‘imagine the old fart sucking your dick is an angel.’

Yeah, your imagination must become actively creative or during oral sex you’ll vomit on the face of old divine princess traped in men’s body, who will be telling you with mouth full of sperm that sucking your cock is the greatest service you can do for the school, your teacher and the influence C.

150. quorum - August 6, 2010

Carl at 144… “become yourself…..then god and the devil do not matter.”

Someone once wrote, and I believe that someone was Walter Whitman:

“I confront peace, security, and all the settled laws, to unsettle them,
I am more resolute because all have denied me, than I could ever have been had all accepted me;
I heed not, and have never heeded either experience, cautions, majorities, nor ridicule.
And the threat of what is called hell is little or nothing to me;
And the lure of what is called heaven is little or nothing to me;”

151. quorum - August 6, 2010

X-ray. disgusting. but so true. what else can you say.

152. WhaleRider - August 6, 2010

Burton imagines he is awake.

His followers imagine they are asleep.

Burton imagines he is helping people by making them suffer.

His followers imagine their endless suffering will help them.

Burton imagines he is a goddess in a man’s body.

His followers with eyes shut imagine a woman while fucking him.

Burton imagines saving the world.

His followers imagine saving hydrogen twelve.

Burton imagines his next victim.

His followers imagine they’ll be gifted.

Burton imagines he is a teacher.

His followers imagine they are students.

Burton imagines numbers talk.

His followers imagine how to increase the numbers.

Burton imagines he has overcome his lower self.

His followers imagine he will go no lower.

Burton imagines a hundred is not enough.

His followers imagine they are not enough.

Burton imagines it is for their own good.

His followers imagine they are bad.

Burton imagines he has earned his money.

His followers imagine paying off their debt.

Burton imagines himself above the law.

His followers imagine nobody cares.

Burton imagines the gods speak only to him.

His followers imagine Burton speaks only for the gods.

Burton imagines the end of the world.

His followers imagine the end of him.

153. nige - August 6, 2010

Whalerider…..I hope this is not inappropriate…..

“You Have Lived”, by Don McLean…..

You have lived such a gentle life upon this earth
that I am stunned by your sight.
If I could give but a token of the love you have,
then I might not be this lonely tonight.

Let them have their smug and their cool, confined by fashion and peer.
I love you for your courage in this frightened atmosphere.
I love you for your courage in this frightened atmosphere.

Oh, there are so few brave one’s like you. Need I explain?
Never wondering what to do, what to venture, what to gain.

And, you have loved, in a total way, from flesh to soul.
You speak, without coy without pose.
Your eyes can see that the emperor has lost his clothes.
And what’s more, you’ll tell the whole world what he stole.

Let them have their fad and their fix, confined by fashion and peer.
I love you for your courage in this frightened atmosphere.
I love you for your courage in this frightened atmosphere.

154. nige - August 6, 2010

Found a book in the ‘philosophy’ section of ‘Book Cycle’, a store that stocks used books, and only asks for a donation. It’s aim is to send books to underdeveloped countries and to plant trees in overfelled parts of the planet…..

from the introduction to “Revelation – The Birth of a New Age”, by David Spangler…..

“We live in a strange time. We are either afraid of the transcendental, the mystical, the sublime within ourselves and within our world, denying its existence or importance in the scheme of things; or we swing to the other extreme, becoming too irrational, too mystical, too given to the pursuit of elusive occult powers and knowledge, yearning for some messiah to supernaturally deal with our problems. Between these extremes, however, revelation is taking place in many areas of human endeavour. A new consciousness of reality, a new image of humanity and and of the universe is taking shape in our midst.

This book is born out of this tide of revelation…..”

I am 1/3 of the way through this book (Spangler was attendant at Findhorn, in Northern Scotland) and have found many passages which would lead me to recommend it to others…..Nigel.

155. Tatyana - August 6, 2010

I stumbled upon Freud’s theory of personality. Quite interesting study considering that he was a contemporary of Ouspensky, while Mr. Ouspensky did not believe in psychology. At the same time as Ouspensky was teaching the system of many I’s and consciousness, Freud developed a theory of Id, Ego and Super-ego (which is a poor translation from “das Es,” “das Ich,” and “das Über-Ich”.)

The id is unconscious by definition
“ contains everything that is inherited, that is present at birth, is laid down in the constitution — above all, therefore, the instincts, which originate from the somatic organization, and which find a first psychical expression here (in the id) in forms unknown to us”

The mind of a newborn child is regarded as completely “id-ridden”, in the sense that it is a mass of instinctive drives and impulses, and needs immediate satisfaction.

The Ego comprises a part of the personality structure that includes defensive, perceptual, intellectual-cognitive, and executive functions. Defense mechanisms include: denial, displacement, intellectualisation, fantasy, compensation, projection, rationalisation, reaction formation, regression, repression, and sublimation.

When the ego is personified, it is like a slave to three harsh masters: the id, the super-ego, and the external world.

According to Freud,
“ …The ego is that part of the id which has been modified by the direct influence of the external world … The ego represents what may be called reason and common sense, in contrast to the id, which contains the passions … in its relation to the id it is like a man on horseback, who has to hold in check the superior strength of the horse; with this difference, that the rider tries to do so with his own strength, while the ego uses borrowed forces.

Conscious awareness resides in the ego, although not all of the operations of the ego are conscious.

The Super-ego strives to act in a socially appropriate manner, whereas the id just wants instant self-gratification. The Super-ego controls our sense of right and wrong and guilt. It helps us fit into society by getting us to act in socially acceptable ways. The Super-ego’s demands oppose the id’s, so the ego has a hard time in reconciling the two.

The super-ego and the ego are the product of two key factors: the state of helplessness of the child and the Oedipus complex

Its formation takes place during the dissolution of the Oedipus complex and is formed by an identification with and internalization of the father figure after the little boy cannot successfully hold the mother as a love-object out of fear of castration.

The super-ego retains the character of the father, while the more powerful the Oedipus complex was and the more rapidly it succumbed to repression (under the influence of authority, religious teaching, schooling and reading), the stricter will be the domination of the super-ego over the ego later on.

It is interesting to see the idea of becoming conscious from the angle of this theory.

156. X-ray - August 7, 2010

151. quorum – August 6, 2010

‘X-ray. disgusting. but so true. what else can you say.’

No, disgusting is when you see him saying that, swallowing your sperm.

157. quorum - August 7, 2010

X-r yes I knew what you meant and agree.

158. X-ray - August 7, 2010

‘X-r yes I knew what you meant and agree.’

not unless your willy bled because of dental scratching

159. quorum - August 7, 2010

No never had that experience. Bleeding down there is not a good thing. It doesn’t sound a whole lot like “higher hydrogens” .

160. X-ray - August 7, 2010

Don’t know about the ‘higher hydrogens’, but when an old gay fart wants to make a young hetero cum, he’ll have to go wild, until he’ll get the outcome.
Two Viagra pills and hours of hand and mouth stimulation can force you do that.
Burton is persistent when it comes to sexual gratification.
But this is just a fraction of his madness. I know people who went thru worse with him.

161. quorum - August 7, 2010

A lot of people who never went through the experience are maybe aware that Burton is sexually active with people in the group, and maybe even vaguely aware that he’s had sexual contact with quite a few people. But many of these people still have the illusion that the teacher is — in the lingo of the group — refined and king of hearts and thinks higher thoughts and is benevolent and would never do anything to hurt anyone. I know it’s in style to believe that most people just won’t change how they think no matter what, and won’t see anything until they’re ready to see it, and nothing you say will matter. I think this attitude is one of the last walls of defense for Burton, though: People don’t say anything about what he’s doing because they don’t think it will matter. I think it matters. Matters a lot. It makes a difference. It wakes people up. It may take some time, but it does. Descriptions from people like X-ray above in 158 & 160 — short and concise and to the point… they help people to think. For the longest time, I had this clear perception that I was living a double life in the FOF… my “school” life, and my real and productive life. These two lives had to meet one day, and I left. Burton also lives a double-life: The life that he presents to people, and the secret life that he is actually living. As more information comes out into the open, these two lives are getting very close to meeting too.

162. X-ray - August 7, 2010

161. quorum – August 7, 2010

‘refined and king of hearts and thinks higher thoughts and is benevolent and would never do anything to hurt anyone.’

That’s the myth he has created but in reality he is nothing more than a nasty pervert who oinks like a pig when gets it from behind.

163. nige - August 7, 2010

FRONDES AGRESTES by Ruskin, the Evangelist

Section 1.

5. A great Idealist never can be egoistic. The whole of his power depends upon his losing sight and feeling of his own existence, and becoming a mere witness and mirror of truth, and a scribe of visions, – always passive in sight, passive in utterance, lamenting continually that he cannot completely reflect nor clearly utter all he has seen, – not by any means a proud state for a man to be in. But the man who has no invention is always setting things in order, and putting the world to rights, and mending, and beautifying, and pluming himself on his doings, as supreme in all ways.

164. nige - August 7, 2010

FRONDES AGRESTES
By Ruskin

Section 1

4.
Had it been ordained by the Almighty that the highest pleasures of sight should be those of most difficult attainment, and that to arrive at them it should be necessary to accumulate GILDED PALACES, tower over tower, and pile ARTIFICIAL MOUNTAINS AROUND INSINUATED LAKES, there would never have been a direct contradiction between the unselfish duties and the inherent desires of every individual. But no such contradiction exists in the system of Divine Providence; which, leaving it open to us, if we will, as creatures in probation, TO ABUSE THIS SENSE LIKE ANY OTHER, and pamper it with SELFISH AND THOUGHTLESS VANITIES, as we pamper the palate with deadly meats, until THE APPETITE OF TASTEFUL CRUELTY is lost in its sickened satiety, incapable of pleasures unless, CALIGULA LIKE, it concentrates the labour of a million lives into the sensation of an hour, – leaves it open to us, BY HUMBLE AND LOVING WAYS, to make ourselves susceptible of deep delight, WHICH SHALL NOT SEPARATE US FROM OUR FELLOWS, nor require the sacrifice of ANY DUTY OR OCCUPATION, but shall bind us closer to men and to God, and be with us always, HARMONISED WITH EVERY ACTION, CONSISTENT WITH EVERY CLAIM, UNCHANGING AND ETERNAL.

165. nige - August 7, 2010

Frondes Agrestes 1.2

“The temper by which right taste is formed is characteristically patient. It dwells upon what is submitted to it. It does not trample upon it, – lest it should be pearls, even though it looks like husks. It is good ground, penetrable, retentive; it does not send up thorns of unkind thoughts, to choke the weak seed; it is hungry and thirsty too, and drinks all the dew that falls on it. It is an honest and good heart, that shows not too ready springing before the sun be up, but fails not afterwards; it is distrustful of itself, so as to be ready to try all things; and yet so trustful of itself, that it will neither quit what it has tried, nor take anything without trying. And the pleasure which it has in things that it finds true and good, is so great, that it cannot possibly be led aside by any tricks of fashion, or diseases of vanity; it cannot be cramped in its conclusions by partialities and hypocrisies; its visions and its delights are too penetrating, – too living, – for any whitewashed object or shallow fountain long to endure or supply. It clasps all that it loves so hard that it crushes it if it be hollow.”

166. nige - August 7, 2010

David Spangler – “Revelation, the Birth of a New Age”…..

“Jesus as an archetypal example did not break law but he acted according to the dictates of love, and love cannot harm any man. But the first principle of love is a recognition of the needs and rights of others. All man’s laws attempt to express this; hence they must be respected within their own patterns before they can be transmuted into HIGHER ones…..

…..Love simply never places itself SUPERIOR TO ANY MAN OR CONDITION. It doesn’t have to, for it knows it can work with any condition and transmute it utterly and create perfect results. It is simply that you are evolving another role, that of exemplifying the presence of the New Age.”

(Goddam! – this is a good book. n.)

167. nige - August 7, 2010

166 – more

“But God’s laws are not static. They are living realities of His Being and they expand as spirit expands and grows in form and matter. Jesus fulfilled the laws of his day and yet presented a greater law, that of limitless Love, that a man who lived in love would obey all the laws given in the past, for he would move in absolute consideration and sensitive awareness of the needsof his fellow men, which is what organization amounts to.”

168. nige - August 8, 2010

GH ‘waffling’ on ‘livingpresence.com’…..

Q. I heard that the stroke that you had in 2000, when you had been in the school for several decades, was an important event in your spiritual evolution. Can you say how you “profited” (as Gurdjieff called it) from this situation?

A. Before the stroke, I would awake in the morning, do what needed to be done during the day, and then go to bed. After the stroke, except for some changes in the details of what needed to be done, it was exactly the same. In other words, my body suffered a stroke, but I was unaffected. Whether I profited from the stroke or not, I do not know, as I have no idea what my life would be like if the stroke had not happened.

Q. The left half of your body is paralyzed, is that right?

A. Actually, it is the right half of my body, and it is only partially paralyzed. To go back to your previous question, other people seemed to be more shocked by the stroke than I was. To me, it was merely another event in my life, and since the events of my life are the material I work with for my evolution, the stroke merely provided something else to work with.

At the same time, I am certain that everything is arranged by higher forces, and they provide the necessary material for me to work with. If it had not been a stroke, it would have been something else. Whether that would have been ‘good’ or ‘bad’ would depend on my attitude toward it and the way in which I used it, just as was the case with the stroke.

169. nige - August 8, 2010

Lest we forget what is going on…..

Former ‘Friends’ petition for probe
Appeal-Democrat, California/October 2, 2008
By Ryan McCarthy

Former members of the Fellowship of Friends want state officials to investigate the Yuba County-based religious group, contending the nonprofit organization uses donations to fund “the extravagant lifestyle” of its leader Robert Burton and that unpaid labor of foreign nationals developed its Yuba County property.

Workers with religious visas have made possible the vineyard and commercial winery at the Fellowship’s 1,171-acre headquarters in the Sierra foothills community of Oregon House, the petition states.

“This fact has been intentionally hidden from authorities,” according to the petition. “Workers are required to donate back to the church the largest portion of their salary, leaving an average monthly wage of about $460.”

The assertions are part of the petition reviewed by anti-cult attorney Ford Greene, who represented a former Yuba College student in a 1996 lawsuit against the Fellowship.

The suit in Yuba County Superior Court, which asserted that Burton had seduced the former college student, was settled before going to trial and its terms remain confidential.

The petition asserts that most lawsuits against the Fellowship are settled financially and “largely concealed from current followers.”

Girard Haven, 63, senior minister with the Fellowship, has said Burton does not grant interviews. Haven could not be reached for comment Wednesday or Thursday about the petition, which began circulating last week and asks that regulatory agencies and officials in California and elsewhere investigate the Fellowship.

The Web site for the Fellowship lists centers in American cities including New York and Los Angeles and states the organization was founded in 1970 in the Fourth Way tradition, also known as “esoteric Christianity.”

Greene said he consider the Fellowship to be a cult similar to Scientology, although not as well known or with as many members.

“Scientology’s got Cruise and Travolta,” Greene said of the two Hollywood stars. “The Fellowship has wine and olive oil.”

The Sierra foothills property has land for olive oil production, as well as a winery.

Greene said the Fellowship is dominated by Burton.

“He’s kind of like the Queen Bee,” Greene said. “And others are drones.”

The petition includes nine letters said to be from former Fellowship members. Among the letter writers, only Oregon House resident Elena Haven, 49, is identified by name.

Haven in her account states that Burton initiates sexual contact exclusively with young male church members, often 30 to 40 years younger than the 69-year-old Burton.

Haven left the Fellowship in 2007 after 17 years. She could not be reached for comment about the petition and her letter.

Arthur Brooks, 67, who is among former members signing the petition, said that in 2007 he discovered a Web site of former members of the Fellowship and was shocked to read about the lawsuit filed in 1996 against Burton.

Brooks, who now lives in Texas, said he has been out of the Fellowship for more than a quarter of a century.

“What I want to do is prevent somebody like me going into it,” he said about signing the petition.

170. nige - August 8, 2010

As Ford Greene claims…..

The word cult pejoratively refers to a group whose beliefs or practices are reasonably considered strange. The word originally denoted a system of ritual practices. The narrower, derogatory sense of the word is a product of the 20th century, especially since the 1980s, and is considered subjective. It is also a result of the anti-cult movement which uses the word in reference to groups seen as authoritarian, exploitative and possibly dangerous. The word implies a group which is a minority in society.

The popular, derogatory sense of the word has no currency in academic studies of religions, where “cults” are subsumed under the neutral label of the “new religious movement”, while academic sociology has partly adopted the popular meaning of the word.

171. nige - August 8, 2010

The definition in 170 was from Wikipedia…..Nigel.

172. nige - August 8, 2010

from ‘The Art of Divine Presence’ (one of the FOF’s sites)…..

The Higher Self
We begin to understand what is divine through our efforts to be present. Presence is consciousness. Since sustained or continuous presence is only achieved with effort, we eventually recognize that being present, being truly awake, is the rarest and highest of all experiences. It is an experience that can so easily be undervalued, but when experienced deeply enough shows us what is real and what is not real. Without presence we really have nothing except our physical energy and our possessions. With presence we have our self, our Higher Self.

The Higher Self is our real Self. It is our Divine Nature. It is the part in us that is immortal and survives death.

Our real Self emerges more definitely the more we are present, and the more deeply we are present. Over the centuries esoteric literature has described the experience of the Higher Self in a myriad of forms: the god Re in Egypt; the Buddhist state of nirvana; the Garden of Eden and the Sabbath of the Judeo-Christian tradition; the Third Eye of Zen; the Beloved in Sufi literature; and in more modern times Real I, as opposed to the many ‘I’s of our mechanical life.

QUESTION – SO YOU CAN ONLY DO THIS THROUGH THE FELLOWSHIP OF FRIENDS?

ANSWER – BULLSHIT!

173. Someone - August 9, 2010

169. nige – August 8, 2010
“Greene said he consider the Fellowship to be a cult similar to Scientology, although not as well known or with as many members. ”
——————————————————–
There’s a great deal of legit and justified criticism against the FoF and RBs sexual conduct, but it is ridiculous to compare the FoF with Scientology.

Scientology (I have been there for six months many years ago) is actively going after people’s money and trying to establish mind control of it’s member.

The FoF is far from that. It has a message, but there is almost no validation process by the organization of how much one has internalized that message. It is up-to each member to follow the FoF way or not and to what extent.

In Scientology they check your mind all the time and they put a lot of preasure especially with money.

One can leave the FoF at any moment and no one will say a word about it. When I left Scientology they were haunting me for more than a month till I threatened to call the police.

There is almost no interference with one’s personal life in the FoF and I have been there for many many years.

174. Agent 45 - August 9, 2010

Yes, by all means leave any time you like, but not before noting the chief activities of Robert Burton:
Suck cock, senseless babbling, Spending (your) money, Dining & Travel (on your dime).
Somehow it will be all worthwhile.

175. nige - August 9, 2010

173 someone

Ways in which the Fellowship of Friends is similar to Scientology…..

1) Both are actively seeking your money. The more you earn, the more they hound you – extra donations for this octave and that, as well as extra gifts for REB.

2) Do you mind telling me how the FOF is not brainwashing you with the Sequence, extracting the Higher Self from the Lower Self, attending this concert and that meeting? I could go on.

3) When I was released from the FOF (may I say, due to Higher Forces working through a student – a very good friend of mine) almost everyone who had known me well, and perhaps a few others, were trying to write to me or telephone me about how I should not ‘linger in this temporary fall from grace’ and get back to the ‘school’ as soon as possible.

4) So REB is not interfering with people’s personal lives, eh?

All I may wish you, as Whitman said (paraphrase) is that “you should wash away the gum from your eyes”. In other words, WAKE UP TO YOUR SITUATION AND LEAVE THE FOF!!!!!…..Nigel.

176. WhaleRider - August 9, 2010

Someone:
“…there is almost no validation process by the organization of how much one has internalized that message…almost no interference with one’s personal life…”

You know, I almost believe you.

177. Josiane - August 9, 2010

Someone:
[Scientology]”…they put a lot of pressure especially with money.” And the Fellowship doesn’t?
About two years before I left (must have been around 2006) someone on the fundraising team had devised a very clever tool for a special item that was to be purchased for Robert’s dining events: rather than the team doing all the work, they came up with the idea of “delegating” the “effort”. The way it worked was that students would be approached (while waiting before events, such as meetings) and presented with a $500 donation form with the task of recruiting nine other students to volunteer to pay $50 each. I was approached by the most ferocious fundraiser that ever existed in FoF – A…..ne F..w. I tried to argue my way out but she was prepared and I wasn’t. I said: “What if I cannot recruit enough students to collect the $500.” “You will”, she said. “But what if I don’t,” I argued. “Then, you can make the entire donation yourself,” she said as she handed me the form. I ended up paying the $500 myself.

178. X-ray - August 10, 2010

A…..ne F..w.

Oh yes, a known bitch.

179. X-ray - August 10, 2010

173. Someone – August 9, 2010

Scientology (I have been there for six months many years ago) is actively going after people’s money and trying to establish mind control of it’s member.

Listen to me you idiot.
You either a liar like your ‘teacher’ or you never even being a member
FOF it’s all about money sex and mind control.
And the ONLY message of the FOF is give me your money and suck my dick or let me suck yours.

180. Tatyana - August 10, 2010

177. Josiane “I ended up paying the $500 myself.”

Why????????

181. silentpurr - August 10, 2010

It is another example of Fellowship duality. Either you do it the FOF way or you leave.
Because if you resist, you will receive pictures of your self painted in the most unflattering of terms; ‘photographs’ of ‘willfulness’, ‘tramp or not knowing what to value’, and of lacking a ‘desire to be in the inner circle’ etc…

182. Josiane - August 11, 2010

180. Tatyana
“Why?” How quickly we forget how brainwashed we were. Let me count the reasons why I paid the $500 myself:
1. feminine dominance (although some say it doesn’t exist in FoF, only in “life”)
2. peer pressure
3. being a good (inner circle) student
4. supporting RB’s vision
5. fear and inner considering
6. being bullied
7. being cornered
8. loss of critical thinking
9. hoping you will sit next to the teacher
10. ……

183. Tatyana - August 11, 2010

Dear Josiane,
please don’t think that I am judging you! Oh no, no, no! I feel pain and nausea that things like this happen!

It is like when the gypsy rob someone promising to tell the future. But worse. Don’t you wish you could “rewind” it? What would you do different? Could you say: “Bloody hell, I don’t need your fucking form, go fuck yourself!”?

I have a story about A…n F…w myself (who doesn’t). I maight already wrote it somewhere.
During the time of JF by D my Moscow friends visited and invited me to come after the reception to A. house for the Evening Gowns Giveaway with champagne and snaks (ooops, Hors O’ Dourves)

When I arrived there were no cars on the parking lot, so I thought it was cancelled. But I knocked and the door opened a few Russian ladies who stayed at A. house (they did not have cars). A. was not home, so we sat around waiting for more guests to arrive and A as well.

When she came home she was furious that the house was “a mess” (it was all right), and she started a big cleaning and restoration octave giving every guest a task. I was given a task to clean some antique candelabras which were falling apart due to their age. When one part fell off A. freaked out and yelled at me that I destroyed her very expensive object. I though for a minute, put it on the table and… went home. It just was not the party I thought it would be. Of course it was not easy, internally I was afraid that she will call me or complain to Robert or something, I even had a nightmare that A. is chasing me and wants to hit me with the antique candelabra. But nothing happened. Except (the worst of all) later in the evening I started thinking that maybe I made a mistake and should go back and volunteer for some free labor so I learn how to handle antique candelabras. But luckily my boyfriend told me: “Are you stupid? You want to go and be A.’s slave?” So, I didn’t…

184. Josiane - August 11, 2010

183. Tatyana
It has been said before on the blog (or perhaps on the Greater Fellowship site) that if this is the consciousness that is being created in FoF, I would rather be without it. I felt that way also; that’s why I left. Where is the Love? Where is the Compassion? Where is the Feeling of Life? It’s not there.
Fo a while I was involved in the research on Gothic cathedrals. To get me started I met with Co….ne M…t who was the chief researcher in that area. We met at her home and, like A. she was extremely negative (although repressing it), totally out of focus and could not logically explain what was expected of me. While there, her father called and, as I sat while she was on the phone, I couldn’t help noticing her very annoyed tone of voice as she was talking to him, trying to cut the conversation short. I could feel that her father wanted to talk but she was, ho, too busy for that so she ended it abruptly.
A few days later I saw her at a meeting all smiles and socially active.
So much love!

185. Tatyana - August 11, 2010

I was thinking today that what makes people difficult is their role of a manager. Even at work (non-students) are the more difficult the higher they are on the corporate ladder. I wonder why is that.

186. WhaleRider - August 11, 2010

Sudden Rise in Fellowship Cancer

Poor House, California (USA)- Health authorities in Yuba County are skeptical of the overnight spike in cancer rates reported among followers of the Fellowship of Friends, Inc., a quasi-religious corporation headquartered in Yuba County and are keeping a close eye on the sex cult.

“We’ll know more as time goes on,” reported one health official. “We aren’t calling it a cluster, yet.”

But inside sources are calling it a cluster fuck.

One long-time follower, wishing to be known only as “Little Squirt” and who despite being completely drained of his sex energy appears to have miraculously retained his conscience, has revealed the real cause of the rapid spread of Fellowship cancer: the recent and startling success of Ashley Anne Kirilow, 23, the Canadian woman who using only “doctored” photos and a pleasant smile faked cancer and managed to steal almost $20,000 in online donations from the unsuspecting and well-meaning public…proving yet again to the Fellowship flock that fraud pays and pays well.

According to Little Squirt, immediately after the Kirilow story broke last week many dedicated and debt-ridden followers began fasting, shaving their heads, plucking their eyebrows and eyelashes, donning head scarves, snapping photos of themselves, updating their Facebook pages, and soliciting donations for their fake non-profit organization, just like Kirilow had.

How low will they go? Some followers have even gone as far as asking for help in fulfilling their last dying wish of visiting the pyramids of Egypt as Kirilow did, winning her a free trip to Disneyland.

Apparently, faking it in the Fellowship is just the status quo for most long time followers. “To tell you the truth, I’ve been faking it for years; so have all my Fellowship friends,” said Little Squirt, who claims to be a follower for over 30 very odd years. “Nobody I know really believes in all that rhino poop anymore; it’s really just another pyramid scheme.”

Many followers remain enslaved with huge, overwhelming debt from living way beyond their means and mindlessly making donations from their credit cards…in direct defiance of the rules of good householder set down by the cult’s own feigned founding fathers, Gurdjieff and Ouspensky.

Reportedly, followers of the Fellowship of Friends, also known online as Pathway to Presence.org and Carpet to Cash.net, are required to disregard both the laws of common decency, known by the cult as “feminine dominance”, and their own common sense in their quest to secure their spot in Paradise after they pass on.

Newer, eager followers are apparently driven to such extreme measures from being repeatedly hounded by other older, more seasoned followers to make extra steep mandatory donations in order to prove themselves worthy enough to remain friends of the Fellowship and keep it’s gay fake guru, Robert E, Burton, in fresh pink suits and glittery gold bling or forever be doomed to endlessly wander the scorched plains of hell in guilty torment if they should leave.

Asked what his motives were for breaking his Fellowship “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” inner jerk circle vow of silent shame, risking eternal damnation, and leaking the truth about some of the Fellowship’s fraudulent practices, Little Squirt replied, “It was a wordless experience, actually. One day, I just woke up with this clear and strong feeling that I’d had enough of the lies…and, just like Kirilow’s parents did, I had to say something to absolve myself of any crime.”

187. X-ray - August 12, 2010

183. Tatyana – August 11, 2010

“Bloody hell, I don’t need your fucking form, go fuck yourself!”?

Yeah, that would boost your cult threatened self-esteem.

188. Ill Never Tell - August 12, 2010

179. X-ray:
‘Listen to me you idiot.
You either a liar like your ‘teacher’ or you never even being a member
FOF it’s all about money sex and mind control.
And the ONLY message of the FOF is give me your money and suck my dick or let me suck yours.’

I’m sorry, X-ray, you are wrong, you left out the part about all the a$$ ki$$ing.

And, BTW, A…..ne F..w is one of the best a$$ ki$$er$!

189. Agent 45 - August 12, 2010

#184 So much love!
“The sign of love is one: love never asks for anything.”
“Lust wants everything.”

It doesn’t have to make sense:
Crime is down; fear of crime is up.

190. Agent 45 - August 12, 2010

Robert Burton loves you,
Yes he do!
Why?
Because he says so, and for no other reason.

191. fofblogmoderator - August 12, 2010

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