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Fellowship Of Friends/Living Presence/Pathway To Presence Discussion – Part 111 August 30, 2011

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Welcome to the newest page of the Fellowship of Friends/Pathway To Presence Discussion.

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 official site of The  Fellowship Of Friends;

http://www.livingpresence.com/

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1. Associated Press - August 30, 2011

Petition to Investigate the Fellowship Of Friends (FOF), Living Presence, Pathway To Presence:
http://www.petitiononline.com/djindjin/petition.html

2. Ames Gilbert - August 30, 2011

Tim (#110-207 or thereabouts),
Both Abdullah Samaha and Peter Morrow are members of the Fellowship of Friends / Pathway to Presence / Living Presence / Being Present.org / Church of Robert Earl Burton organization. Thanks for pointing out a new recruitment tool.
The ‘hook’ for the San Jose group: Practical discussions, tools and tips for accessing the Power of Now and living in Presence. Based on the teaching of Eckhart Tolle, the Fourth Way / Gurdjieff and other mystical tradition (sic).
http://www.meetup.com/The-Power-of-Now-San-Jose/

The ‘hook’ for the Sacramento group: The spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle provides a modern exposition of the ancient 4th Way system taught by Gurdjieff and Ouspensky. This group seeks to go beyond Eckhart’s book into the actual day to day practice of being Present. Using the knowledge, methods and practical tools provide by the 4th Way. A good place to start is with the book called The Psychology of Man’s Possible Evolution . . . etc, etc.

Penetrating the Power of Now

Rancho Cordova, CA
165 People of the Now

Inspired by Eckhart Tolle, this group seeks to go beyond Eckhart’s book into the actual day to day practice of being Present.One awakens the moment one realizes one is asleep…

Next Meetup

2nd Saturday MINDFULNESS WORKSHOP

Saturday, Sep 13, 2014, 5:30 PM
1 Attending

Check out this Meetup Group →

I joined both groups just now, and posted this message:
This group is founded on a lie of omission. Abdullah Samaha and Peter Morrow will not tell you that they are members of the “Fellowship of Friends” cult, and have formed this group to recruit new members. Other names of this group are/have been: Fellowship of Friends / Pathway to Presence / Living Presence / Being Present.org / Church of Robert Earl Burton. For your own sakes, google these names and find out for yourselves.
The ‘hook’ is Eckhart Tolle; the claim that he is linked in any way to the Fourth Way is a lie. In actual fact, the FoF ‘teaching’ is that ET is ‘B-Influence’, and that ‘C-Influence’ works exclusively with Burton and the Fellowship of Friends; typical cult claims. Burton claims to be a ‘man number 8’ and equal to Christ, and that mankind will be expunged while his followers are left to form a new civilization centered on the property known as Apollo (Oregon House, CA 95962). And, if you are a good-looking male, Burton is likely to ask you for sex.
So, beware!

3. Ames Gilbert - August 31, 2011

Sorry, I misspelled Abdallah, above. The next meeting in Sacramento is Wednesday Aug 31, tomorrow, at 7 p.m. in the North Natomas library (4660 Via Ingoglia, Sacramento). It will be hosted by Alex, probably Alex Ayuli, also a member.
I did change the review a bit (go to Group Reviews) on both sites to include more information within the character limits, and added my e-mail. If any reader wants to add to this, they will have to join the group (takes maybe 5 minutes).

And thanks to JD for pointing this out in the first place, and to Tim for the reminder!

4. Truth Be Told - August 31, 2011

The claim on the previous page that FOF workers were allowed to go hungry is among the more serious charges against the Fellowship of Friends/Living Presence/Power of Now/Pathway to Presence/Whatever, based in Mount Carmel/Via del Sol/Renaissance/Apollo/Isis/Apollo.

Some background: Until the late 1990s, everyone was fed at a common trough. Free food was one of the benefits of being “on salary.”

Management decided, during a round of budget cuts, that this was encouraging “tramp.” People should take responsibility for themselves.

A fancy restaurant, Apollo d’Oro, was created, and members were expected to pay for their meals.

Someone told me, about 2003 or 2005 I think, that some students were actually going hungry in the wake of this plan.

I took the matter to El1zabeth Blak3, a psychologist who was then a member of the “Fellowship Council.” As I recall, I suggested the extra food at the Galleria could be distributed, or at least something to do with the food being wasted.

She asked me to name names. Of course I didn’t have any. This had been described to me as a general reality, not the complaint of an isolated person or two. It seemed believable enough.

She floored me when said anyone who was hungry should come forward. In other words, the beggars would have to identify themselves to get help.

“Please, sir, may I have some more?”

I guess the Council was the “spiritual wing” of the FOF. They didn’t do compassion.

They were too busy tracking down Adyashanti followers and discussing the candidates for center directors. (Pardon the snark.)

“For I was hungry, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and you gave me no drink … Verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not unto me.” Matt. 25: 42, 45.

5. Tim Campion - August 31, 2011

2., 3. Ames Gilbert

If the Fellowship is indeed resorting to this kind of dishonesty, then it should probably be brought to the attention of Eckart Teachings Inc. so they may take appropriate legal action to defend their interests.

6. Ames Gilbert - August 31, 2011

Well, Abdallah Samaha removed me from the San Jose group, including my review of the group. So we now know he is a coward as well as a liar. The automated Meetup e-mail included a contact address, so I sent him the following message:

Hello Abdallah,
It appears you have removed me from your list. That is an abuse of your power, and a blow against the truth. Be assured I will continue to try to tell that truth to all potential members of the Fellowship of Friends, and inform folks that you, Peter Morrow, Alex Ayuli, and any other followers of Burton that you are not what you seem. You know perfectly well that Burton considers any other teachings as B-Influence, and that he has thrown out followers who have shown any abiding interest in other spiritual paths. So for you to use the bait of Eckhart Tolle to lure people to your cult is disingenous as well as hypocritical, an outrage in spiritual terms.

Burton, and by extension you and your fellows, may preach and act as if the ends justifies the means, that your ‘intentional insincerity’ in these matters is a valid way of trapping the unwary, but I assure you it is not. You and your fellows have never seriously studied the Fourth Way, and have little idea of the application of the Law of Three and the Law of Seven, but even a brief initial study will show you that deception at the start of an octave corrupts the entire octave. Common sense, really, but corruption is at the heart of the Fellowship, and you are yourself corrupted as a result, so you are normalized to corruption.

I hope one day you come to your senses, but this will probably not be soon if this is how you act in the world now.

Ames Gilbert, former member.

7. 2011 - August 31, 2011

Just to offer a little history; sometime around 2005 (as I recall) Robert started talking about the Power Of Now and that he considered it to be something akin to what the Fellowship was aspiring to. My recollection was that he did not ban the book or forbid it but rather we were encouraged to bookmark this particular book. Remember, Burton always said; “why change a winning hand?” and since bookmarks had worked so well in the past, it wasn’t the bookmarks that weren’t working- it was the books! He realized that this book could serve as a new vehicle in which to recruit new members.

8. Tim Campion - August 31, 2011

Ames, your courage is an inspiration.

Well, the Fellowship has been blocked from bookmarking in the past, so perhaps Eckhart Teachings Inc. will wish to see that no bookmarking is done in their books?

Before contacting them however, I would like to know that these (bait-and-switch meet-ups and bookmarking) are officially sanctioned activities.

9. fofblogmoderator - August 31, 2011

#4 is new

10. Red Hat - August 31, 2011

Perhaps the Sacramento Public Library director should be contacted, as well as the Natomas Library, and informed of the controversial nature of the group they are hosting. Maybe the Sacramento Bee should be on hand for that meeting, too. Might be fun for all.

Any former members in the neighborhood are free to attend, armed with fliers about the FOF. No law prevents you from distributing your own material outside the doors.

Hey! Come back and post here. Tell us how it goes.

11. Tim Campion - August 31, 2011

7. 2011

“…it wasn’t the bookmarks that weren’t working- it was the books!”

That must have been an “Aha! moment” in the Church of Bob!

12. Wondering Who’s Watching - August 31, 2011

4. Truth Be Told – August 31, 2011:
‘Some background: Until the late 1990s, everyone was fed at a common trough. Free food was one of the benefits of being “on salary.”’

Not quite the truth as I saw it. Until the mid 1990’s, the main dining facility for the Fellowship of Friends (FoF), beingpresent.org, Living Presence, Power of Now, Pathway to Presence, Church of Robert Earl Burton (REB), based in Oregon House, California and also called: The Farm, Via del Sol, Mount Carmel, Renaissance (Renaissance Vineyard and Winery), Apollo, Isis, then Apollo again, and possibly other names, was the Lincoln Lodge. Yes, the people who were ‘on salary’ dined collectively at this place – others paid. But ‘common trough’ for all would be pushing it. REB and his chosen were always treated in a special manner. Segregated dining room, Meissen Room or Mozart Deck for a time, for example, was where REB and mostly the ‘high rollers’ (people of significant importance and, especially, money) would be served significantly different food and treated in a different manner. Other significant players in the FoF hierarchy were also given special treatment. The common folk did dine in-common and uncommonly well as ‘intentional dining’ was an FoF ‘exercise’ and a hallmark of its civilized feeding. But, this came to a sudden screeching halt when Yuba County declared the Lincoln Lodge facility to be in violation of several building and/or health codes. It appeared that REB squandered much of FoF capital on the acquisition of Classical Chinese Furniture and pretty much ignored infrastructure and longterm maintenance – mostly interested in putting on a good show. Then there was the $5 million out-of-court settlement of the TB underage sex lawsuit REB incurred. By then, REB dined at his residence, at the restaurant on FoF property that was open to the public, or at the FoF member owned restaurant in the neighborhood, when he was in Oregon House. The employed people that were dependent on the Lincoln Lodge had no place to eat. This was prelude to the 1998 prediction of California falling into the Pacific Ocean disaster. After a considerable period of time, a food distribution method was developed where the raw ingredients were supplied to people to prepare meals at their homes and organize common dinners there. Much of this was accomplished by trading Renaissance Vineyard and Winery wine to the suppliers. A lot of the food was really great but consistency and balanced diet was a bit difficult to achieve by this method. Meanwhile, REB was living off the FoF property in the ‘Ming Museum’ while his residence on the FoF property was trying to get special county tax treatment as being ‘officially’ a museum. Special dining happened at the Ming, too. Also, some fairly wild parties. REB was not ‘actively’ or ‘formally’ teaching during this period. (He returned to teaching again mostly due to GH having a stroke.) Eventully, REB started having Friday night receptions, that typically fed 300 people buffet style, as the designated fundraiser for the tens of thousands of dollars that were needed to return the Lincoln Lodge back to operation via renovation. It then became Apollo d’Oro where mostly everyone had to pay for their meals. (REB, and company, did not have to pay.) The last thing I knew was, if you wanted to survive ‘on salary,’ you had to have one, or more, side jobs that became as important, if not more important, than your main job. Or, you became adept at wheeling and dealing in vouchers on the grey market. Or, other creative financing – like creating your own winery. Other possibilities were to have your significant other be employed with a job in the real world. Then, there was the issue of providing yourself with adaquate health services – MediCal (impoverished persons public health benefit) was the main strategy. Oregon House Clinic came into existence to cover basic needs, somehow. All of this fueled very interesting money management matters – not all of which were legitimate.

‘Fellowship Council,’ as is the board of directors, are mere tools and puppets to accomplish what REB wants.

Galleria uneaten food was typically thrown out, composted (if possible), or salvaged by the workers behind the scenes, so that they could take it home as a side benefit of their ‘third line of work.’ Most was not suitable to take home, though – do you want to eat someone else’s partly eaten food?. Living off the crumbs from REB’s table was tricky business.

The inability of persons to survive was a sure means to cycle these indentured servants back to their countries of origin by the time their visas ran out. Those that were well-to-do or got by, by hook or by crook, lived to go on at the ‘heart of the school.’ Pimping for REB, for example, was a way to make yourself useful. Kissing ass, and other parts of anatomy, works, too. Clearing the endlessly overgrown landscape for private parties would be another. (Do not confuse that with ‘bush whacking.’) How about a buttons or ribbons business? Petrarch (Pyramid) Press anyone? How about growing, nurturing, harvesting and selling crops from the FoF property for personal profit? Clandestine Jubaea chilensis (Chilean Wine Palm) sales could be lucrative. Want some palm jelly?

Wondering Who’s Watching

13. nigel - August 31, 2011

This is something that Eckhart Tolle says…..

(somewhat akin to Burton saying – “Consciousness is not functions”)

No wonder they are trying to ‘pirate’ Tolle…..

“The realm of consciousness is much vaster than thought can grasp. When you no longer believe everything you think, you step out of thought and see clearly that the thinker is not who you are.”

14. X-ray - August 31, 2011

Jesus Christ! it is so disgusting that it is hard to even finish reading the posts above.
What a level of dishonesty! This unbelievable!
Please Ames, by all means, contact Echrat Tolle Inc with this information.
And man, P.M? The chronicle alcoholic is now been used as recruiting tool? That’s mean that FOF is in desperation.
Will he soon be flying on his jet spreading a recruiting fliers over Sacramento?

15. X-ray - August 31, 2011

4

´´She floored me when said anyone who was hungry should come forward. In other words, the beggars would have to identify themselves to get help.´´

For the record.

I would never eat a left over from burtons table.
I would consider that as an insult to my dignity and spirit.
I would prefer to remain hungry (as I was during the whole time being on salary) than ever begging for the food.
I didn’t hate them for going hungry, I hated them for their inhumaness.
Elizabeth B. always was an insider and I can guarantee you that the only reason why she asked to name the names, was to silence them out, either by heavy brainwashing, intimidation or ´´leave of absence´´.
And I know these criminals too well to be mistaken.

16. X-ray - August 31, 2011

Penetrating the Power of Now

Rancho Cordova, CA
165 People of the Now

Inspired by Eckhart Tolle, this group seeks to go beyond Eckhart’s book into the actual day to day practice of being Present.One awakens the moment one realizes one is asleep…

Next Meetup

2nd Saturday MINDFULNESS WORKSHOP

Saturday, Sep 13, 2014, 5:30 PM
1 Attending

Check out this Meetup Group →

This is a serious copyrights violation.

17. X-ray - August 31, 2011

I suggest to make a snapshot of this page with Erhart Tolle´s face in it, in case they will removed it shortly.

18. X-ray - August 31, 2011

Ames, please write them the way you do and attached the links to our Petition, Blog and Rick Ross sites.

19. Ames Gilbert - August 31, 2011

And now I’ve been removed from the Sacramento group, but not before two people took me up on the offer to find out more. I replied to “all”, e.g., the whole group and told them something about Burton and the Fellowship of Friends (and aliases). So at least that is out there, and they have my e-mail (nancyames@spiralemail.com) if they want to ask more questions. I notice that there is another Power of Now group in San Francisco (http://www.meetup.com/powerofnowsf/). Same photo of Eckhart Tolle in the header. Until last night, it was run by Gregory Dixon, but has now changed to Peter Morrow and someone called Alex (Ayuli?). Although it was announced last year, and about 57 people expressed interest, there have been no meetups as yet. I’m sure I’m preemptively banned there as well, so someone else will have to keep an eye on that situation, as well as any others around the country. Incidentally, there are meetup groups for “The Academy of European Arts and Culture”, a spinoff of the FoF started by Melvin Brady (deceased), a former member of the Fellowship. He has a “In Memoriam”page on GF. More at: http://www.academyofeuropeanarts.com/

20. Opus111 - August 31, 2011

Interesting to note that one of the first “members” to infiltrate that group was the (in)famous Mario F. You can see his smug face on some of the earlier messages.

21. Tim Campion - August 31, 2011

From the Sacramento Penetrating the Power of Now meet-up site:

“Hello everyone, my name is Peter Morrow…I have been practicing the power of now for over 35 years – well before Eckhart’s wonderful book was even a gleam in his eye. I hope to meet you all soon to share practical knowledge about living in the Now.”

22. fofblogmoderator - August 31, 2011

#19 was stuck in moderation for a minute

23. silentpurr - August 31, 2011

I think Eckart will look at Robert Burton and see him for exactly what he is, a businessman.
– a snake-oil salesman, a “spiritual” businessman. Only one of many out there ..
Eckart may be fascinated but not enticed.
A basic beauty of Eckart Tolle’s message, simply put, is that there is nothing to BUY!
Contrast that with the Fellowship and it’s purchasing of moments.

24. brucelevy - August 31, 2011

Tolle is just another demigod who has succumbed to guru syndrome. They’re all the same person with different faces and varying sexual proclivities utilizing the same cult dynamics with varying degrees of greed, and a very RELATIVE “conscience”. They all start out as simply conduits of redily available free material (which is fine) but all end up seeing themselves as “the way”. They’re temporarily useful “maps” who inevitably believe (with the help of their flying monkeys and sycophants) that they are destination.

I don’t trust anyone who wants to “teach”,

25. Magoo - August 31, 2011

Right on Bruce.

If anyone is interested in photos of the Theatron then please write to me at magooharrison@yahoo.com

26. silentpurr - August 31, 2011

-so we wouldn’t be telling Mr. Tolle anything he doesn’t already know and accept about Mr. Burton and the Fellowship of Friends/ Pathway to nowhere…

27. Tim Campion - August 31, 2011

Eckhart Teachings response:

“Eckhart Teachings has no connection to Peter Ouspensky or the Fellowship of Friends. We cannot control what people may do with Eckhart’s books, teachings, or any associations they may attempt to make, and to our knowledge this does not infringe on copyright in any way. We thank you for your concern.”

28. Arthur - August 31, 2011

#12 What a nightmare!

#24 Amen tripled!

29. silentpurr - August 31, 2011

I wonder what Oprah would say?!

30. silentpurr - August 31, 2011

Would Oprah would recognize Robert for the sexual predator that he is?

31. brucelevy - August 31, 2011

“Would Oprah recognize Robert for the sexual predator that he is?”

Based on her past history first she would tout him as the greatest thing since white bread, then upon learning of his deviancy she’d try to vilify him in front of her audience. She’s fallen into this trap several times with skeezy “teacher’s” and authors.

32. Opus111 - August 31, 2011

Eckhart Tolle came to Marin county in 2008. He sold out the 2000 seats Veterans Memorial Auditorium at the price of $70-100 a seat (150,000 to 200,000 receipts). He gave his monologue for the required 2h (some flowers on stage but no other props). Indeed a gig Mr. Burton can only envy…

http://www.soulscode.com/saturday-night-live-from-marin-county-ca-its-eckhart-tolle/

33. Wouldnt You Like To Know - August 31, 2011

19. Ames Gilbert – August 31, 2011:
‘Incidentally, there are meetup groups for “The Academy of European Arts and Culture”, a spinoff of the FoF started by Melvin Brady (deceased), a former member of the Fellowship. He has a “In Memoriam”page on GF.’

Mervyn Brady

34. Kid Shelleen - August 31, 2011

My thoughts exactly, Mr. Levy. Robert can only dream about being in the same League of Extrordinary Gurus as Dyer, Tolle, Katie, and D’Oprah. He is to those folks what Hermit’s Hermits were to the Beatles.

Oh, incidentally, I became a Man #5.8 during that last East coast quake, so keep an eye out for my fliers in a Safeway near you. Don’t worry, I’ve got a very cool bonus points plan in my school: if you’re not awake within ten years of joining, you keep the points!

35. Ill Never Tell - September 1, 2011

34. Kid Shelleen – August 31, 2011:
‘He is to those folks what Hermit’s Hermits were to the Beatles.’

Didn’t you mean: ‘Herman’s Hermits?’
Possible better example might be: as the Monkees were to the Beatles? (Except Monkees not British;-)))

36. Shirley - September 1, 2011

4 Truth be told, 12 Wondering Who’s Watching

Thanks for chronicling the “dining octave” on the property. It was interesting to read the zigging and zagging of the Lincoln Lodge’s fate (wasn’t it usually in violation of building and/or health codes, even in the 1970s and 80s?). I am not surprised to read that RB squandered money that should have gone to infrastructure on things like Ming furniture. I remember his interest in Ming furniture, in the 1980s, as being a reason why I felt personally repelled by that irrepressible side of RB; it was too close to home.

He was self-indulgent at the expense of the overall welfare of the FF. One reason he may not have ensured that money went to maintain the Lodge (I can’t speak for other structures, because they came about after I left) is that maintenance is boring. Spending money to shore up buildings that feed people isn’t fun and thrilling. Also, he was, as Wondering Who’s Watching pointed out, usually segregated from the common dining experience. I can’t remember the dining experience at the Lodge during 73-75 (because I was washing dishes in the kitchen on weekends, instead of doing the “fine dining” thing). It was different in the Lodge when I returned in 79, already more of a culture club where arduous work was not expected of visitors. I remember the Meissen Room. One didn’t just walk in there. It was treated with reverence, which is ironic, because our donations paid for that stuff. It *is*, after all, just “stuff”, in the end: Material objects. I haven’t seen the cuff-links, but they are also just “stuff,” although RB seems to have used them as soft dollars in exchange for body-oriented services. What is it with his preoccupation with big and small bling? Was it an excuse for pretending that higher hydrogens would help you wake up?

Reading about how the FF tried to cope with feeding people on the property: I will allow for the fact that trying to feed large numbers of people of diverse groups is logistically difficult. But it seems that a persistent, corrupting element kept interfering with intelligent food distribution and a meal delivery system for, say, salaried workers who didn’t have the money or time to go back home at mid-day to eat. And that corrupting element was the drive to make money for extravagant purchases and projects.

37. Shirley - September 1, 2011

34 Kid Shelleen

I thought I saw one of your fliers, but the Hurricane on the east coast last weekend blew it away.

38. Red Hat - September 1, 2011

12 WWW

1) The “food distribution” system was a joke. You can’t live on jars of pickles and jams.

2) The Fellowship of Friends never paid a dime for the Troy B. case. It was all insurer’s payout. Of course the company dropped him afterward. I think that’s what caused the crisis a few years later, when no loan agents or insurers would touch the FOF unless Robert wasn’t in the picture. That’s when he began “teaching” again, to raise his own dough. (I was not directly involved in these transactions, so someone please correct me if I am wrong.)

Finally the Gurdjieff Foundation made a big whoop when we were simply bookmarking the Gurdjieff books all those years ago. Let’s hope the publisher of “The Power of Now” makes a similar whoop.

39. Tim Campion - September 1, 2011

4. Truth Be Told
12. Wonder Who’s Watching

These are pretty sad stories – not the legacy one would expect of Influence C’s pet project on Earth.

WWW said: “After a considerable period of time, a food distribution method was developed where the raw ingredients were supplied to people to prepare meals at their homes and organize common dinners there. Much of this was accomplished by trading Renaissance Vineyard and Winery wine to the suppliers.”

I think Robert and Karl Werner saw the vineyard as a gold mine that would sustain the Fellowship after the 1998 Fall of California, wine being the currency used to barter during the subsequent chaos.

I was in the wine industry at the time and shared many of the same suppliers, and would occasionally hear tales of these proposed
exchanges. (Legitimate businesses don’t generally wish to engage in such questionable practices.) RVW was becoming the laughing stock of the industry, its product losing prestige through such foolishness.

The costs of their fantasies and miscalculations echo down through the years (and the ruins stand on a mountainside for all to see.)

38. Red Hat

I didn’t see any bookmarks at the local Barnes & Noble, which has a selection of Eckhart Tolle books but nothing from Gurdjieff or Ouspensky. Then it occurred to me, bookmarks are so 20th century.

Now that most books are ordered on-line or directly downloaded, bookmarking is inefficient and, increasingly, irrelevant.

40. X-ray - September 1, 2011

27

Man, it looks like they have just chickened out.
Fof have used Tolle´s picture without his consent. That is already a violation of copyright law.
Second, they are using his copyrigthed intellectual property as a recruiting tool for their cult.
They just have no balls to admit it and take action.
But you know what? Their response is still good and can be shown to those in the ´´meeting group´´. If they have any brain left in their heads, they will figure the fraud out.

41. X-ray - September 1, 2011

21 Tim Campion – August 31, 2011

“Hello everyone, my name is Peter Morrow…I have been practicing the power of now for over 35 years – well before Eckhart’s wonderful book was even a gleam in his eye. I hope to meet you all soon to share practical knowledge about living in the Now.”

So, if he was ´´practicing the power of now for 35 years before Echart´s wonderful book was even a gleam in his eye´´, then why this Peter Morrow didn´t use his own picture on the recruiting website?
Is it not the same as burton was recruiting thru 4th way books instead of using his ´´self-remembering´´ crap, which was putted together by C. L, in between sexual activities with new female students?

42. Ames Gilbert - September 1, 2011

To my great surprise, I received a reply to my letter to Abdullah Samaha (#111-6 or thereabouts). According to him, he and Peter Morrow, Mario Fantoni, Gregory Dixon and Alex Ayuli, are organizing these Meetup groups for completely altruistic reasons. So, it is in the realms of possibility that I’ve completely misjudged them and the Fellowship of Friends. Here is the e-mail without further commentary from me:

Hello Ames,

I do not know about your experience with the FOF and how you ended up with so much hate for this organization, and I do not which to enter in any discussion with you about it; therefore to protect my group from exposure to the negativity in your message, I removed you from our meetup.

The truth is that since the conception of the meetup idea, it was always being presented as an opportunity bringing forth our understanding of being present and combine them with other people experiences, in an open discussion.

Fourth Way material as well as Eckhart, and other sources are discussed and used to enhance and support our endeavor to be in the moment.

Fact; no one has been approached about becoming a member of any group including the FOF. And no one to best of my knowledge, became a member of the FOF from the meetup groups.

It has been a collective effort, between Peter, Alex and myself to bring our understanding of the 4th Way, Sufism, FOF and other spiritual teaching to people who share the same goal, and have fun while doing it.

Intentionally the FOF has not been mentioned in our discussion, for the reason of keeping the meetup group open to other spiritual teaching.

Ames, I hope I managed to have presented few facts about what these meetup are all about, and at this point, I will attempt to clasify your e-mail as spam, I do not wish to receive any further replies from you; pardon my rudeness but it is necessary.

Abdallah

43. Arthur - September 1, 2011

Robert E. Burton ‘new age’ spiritual guru practices witchcraft by casting spells on his own theocracy.

44. X-ray - September 1, 2011

42

Com on, Ames, you don´t believe this crap.
These people are proven liers,professionals, so to speak.

NOTHING IN THE FOF IS DONE WITHOUT BURTONS APPROVAL, ESPECIALLY WHEN IT COMES TO OLDER STUDENTS.
IT IS WITHOUT A DOUBT A FELLOWSHIP RECRUITING GROUP.

I DONT BELIEVE A WORD THEY SAY. ALL THEY KNOW TO DO IS TO LIE.

45. Tim Campion - September 1, 2011

42. Ames

“The Lady doth protest too much, methinks.”

Though he admits no understanding of your position, Abdallah is willing to cut you off from “his group” and deny further communication. To me, that doesn’t sound very open.

“Fact; no one has been approached about becoming a member of any group including the FOF. And no one to best of my knowledge, became a member of the FOF from the meetup groups.”

If they maintain such a track record, then your work is done.

Every Fellowship of Friends member is tainted by Robert Burton. Each carries the baggage of a cult with a long-established tradition of “intentional insincerity” (what “life” would call lying.) We would be naive to ignore a well-documented forty-year legacy of deceit. Regardless of any altruistic intent, this guilt-by-association is an unfortunate consequence of their membership.

They are naive to think their words can be taken at face value out here in “life”, At the same time I would welcome a dialogue that permitted further explanation of this new-found altruistic pursuit.

46. Magoo - September 1, 2011

Ames
Thanks.
From Abdallah’s letter it is not clear why they need Eckert Toll photo in the logo. I have read Eckert Toll and his way is very different then Gurdjieff/Ouspansky. It sounds like a mishmash mixed salad with too many ingredients so any flavor is lost.
I am with X-Ray on this one. It is hard to believe that there is no real motive behind the service. Another motive could be why people go to church and that is to spot someone from the opposite sex??

47. Red Hat - September 1, 2011

Let me understand this. In 2007, they were rounding up those who even read a book by a guy named Adyashanti. They were calling up members to ask who had attended a meeting or two, and they were listening to rumors about who had attended.

Now, in 2011, it’s not only OK to attend “B Influence” meetings touting rival “teachers,” but the members are able to organize these meetings in major cities, with the blessing of Robert Burton. Huh?

Looks like they’re trying to keep deniability.

I’m not buying. If Abdallah Samaha’s letter is correct on at least one detail, it looks like the public isn’t buying, either.

48. X-ray - September 1, 2011

47

True.
And then, those who have attended Adyashanti, were kicked out, after one Russian schmuck turned them all in to L.T.
Back then burton called Adyashanty ´´a B – influence virus´´, which apparently have become C – influence in just 3 years.
What I see here is a complete failure and collapse of their sick and shallow ´´teaching´´.
They have no leg to stand both legaly and spiritually speaking.

49. silentpurr - September 1, 2011

Fellowship students are not known to reach out to “life” unless there is a potential to profit by that effort…

50. WhaleRider - September 1, 2011

“…pardon my rudeness but it is necessary”…otherwise I will be asked to leave the cult.

51. brucelevy - September 1, 2011

42. Ames Gilbert

I’m with X-Ray on this one, Old Abdallah sounds exactly like your typical FOF asshole and flying monkey. I believe his explanation as much as AG’s past explanations to the press about various bull shit.

Then again, even if what he’s saying is even the least bit true, and I’m sure it’s not unless he’s blatantly lying to himself, I’m sure the four people involved have come down with a little case of mini-guru syndrome and all the power-over-others and control issues that it implies.

Fuck em, but especially fuck this pompous, narcissistic douche bag Abdallah. The negativity he expressed to you, for me, far outweighs anything he could have gleaned as “negativity” from your letter.

52. 2011 - September 1, 2011

It’s hard to image these (FOF) guys aren’t out there looking for “magnetic centers”. Remember that’s what draws you into the fourth way. It’s your magnetic center searching for the answers to the questions that have been burning inside of you ever since you recognized that the planet is upside down (not necessarily my opinion).

I wonder if Abdallah would at least admit that he’s out there looking for people with strong magnetic centers?

53. nigel - September 1, 2011

There is so much hiding the truth about motives and ‘changing the game plan’ explained in all these recent posts…..

“Oh! what a tangled web we weave
When first we practise to deceive!”

Sir Walter Scott

54. Just the Facts Ma'am - September 1, 2011

Robert Earl Burton (REB), Fellowship of Friends (FoF), beingpresent.org, Living Presence, Pathway to Presence, etc., tried, in the past, to attract followers of other, so called, spiritual paths, like: The Fourth Way personages, Meher Baba, Rajneesh, etc. This exploitative strategy typically was implemented after the person was dead, or, at least, out of the picture. It was usually characterized within FoF as the compassionate thing to do to accept fellow aspirants into the bosom of the school. Where would people have to go? But, now, highjacking another person’s established charisma (‘hook,’ if you will), Power of Now – Eckhart Tolle, shows just how sociopathic and desparate they have become. Got to get some glory some how. ‘Gory’ is more like it. Vampire stew anyone?

And, BTW, the ‘MF’ mentioned in:
111/42. Ames Gilbert – September 1, 2011
is the same ‘MF’ mentioned in:
110/117. Just the Facts Ma’am – August 27, 2011
where it says:
‘One MF, who fashioned themselves a big business person, and now may own a house (bought from S. & T. S., who left FoF over the flap about going to see Adyashanti) across Rice’s Crossing Road from the Fellowship of Friends (FoF) (Living Presence, Pathway To Presence) property and the Galleria (residence of Robert Earl Burton), agreed to hire a fellow student, KL, for some professional work and when it became time to pay the compensation, MF did not have the money that was agreed to in advance. MF then offered KL a business or personal credit card, that MF had, so that KL could go and buy some things equal to the value that they were owed. The credit card, quite possibly already near being max’d out, was then reported stolen, by MF, and that the charges were illegal/bogus. This brought criminal charges onto KL. The items purchased were considered illegally acquired and evidence to be confiscated. MF refused to exonerate KL. The end result of this fiasco is not known to me. (Criminal activity is lauded in the sociopathic environment of FoF.)’

Please, MF, step forward and post here (this venue will not reject you – challenge you is another story) and refute the above story. At least tell us how it looked from your view. Because, every situation has many different ways of seeing it. But, alas, MF would be asked to leave FoF were he to post on this blog.

55. Tim Campion - September 1, 2011

Since this discussion started, the San Francisco and Sacramento groups have blocked non-members from accessing most content on their sites. Such openness…

56. 2011 - September 1, 2011

From #42
“Intentionally the FOF has not been mentioned in our discussion, for the reason of keeping the meetup group open to other spiritual teaching.”

How about the fact that if you google “Fellowship Of Friends” you will quickly find out that many of the former members consider it a cult that misleads and doesn’t actually offer a path to awakening.

It might be time for the moderator to add “Power Of Now” somewhere on this page so that a google search would show a link to the Fellowship site or to this blog.

also from #42
“I do not know about your experience with the FOF and how you ended up with so much hate for this organization, and I do not which to enter in any discussion with you about it; therefore to protect my group from exposure to the negativity in your message, I removed you from our meetup.”

In other words, if I close my eyes- it will go away. When he says he does not wish to enter in any discussion about your experience he’s only exposing his inability to defend 35 years of lies and corruption. Also, who ever said you hate the organization. This is all about Burton.

Shame on anybody who is currently in the FOF who does not contemplate and ponder all the people who have left the Fellowship of Friends. They would have to realize that the remaining membership is not part of a “special few” but that they are the poor souls who have decided to remain in a prison they will never be able to escape from. Get out while you can!

57. Josiane - September 1, 2011

For what it’s worth, I don’t see those guys (Abdallah, Gregory, Peter and Alex) as liars. Don’t know Abdallah or Alex but I know a bit about Peter and Gregory, especially Gregory, who is said to have Nisargadatta Maharaj’s “I Am That” on his coffee table. I see them as true believers who are trying new avenues to spread the “Good News”, the good news being that FoF has all the answers since it has being studying all the traditions that lead one to awakening. And yes, I agree they should be stopped.

58. Magoo - September 2, 2011

Josiane
Myself and others have worked for GD, and we all agreed that he is/was a lunatic. It was in the early 80s that I worked for him for $7 an hour. Then one day he cut my wages to $6/h without any explanation.

‘Nisargadatta Maharaj’s “I Am That” on his coffee table
I see them as true believers who are trying new avenues to spread the “Good News”’

I think that Nisargadatta was above spreading the Good News.

59. Magoo - September 2, 2011

As for MF One has to hear the gangster story from S & T.S what he did to them when he bought their house in Oregon House.

60. X-ray - September 2, 2011

51 Bruce

I agree.
I´ve heard more hate in the Nasrallah´s email, even though, wrapped in diplomatic language, than I´ve heard in all Ames´s posts together over the last four years.
The guy is full of shit and stinks like skunk from miles.
I´ve heard exactly same responses from the older students, when I was trying to point out burtons immoral behavior and inconsistencies in his ´´teaching´´.
This classical response is showing how truth suppressed in the FOF. Any critics considered a negativity, even if you only point to the facts.

Pricless lesson for newcomers.
Thank you Ames..

61. X-ray - September 2, 2011

56

´´It might be time for the moderator to add “Power Of Now” somewhere on this page so that a google search would show a link to the Fellowship site or to this blog´´

I agree. Good idea.

59

So what´s the story, Magoo? I want to hear about it.

As far as GD goes, this guy is not different than Elizabeth B, Linta T. or any other lunatic in the fof.

62. Shirley - September 2, 2011

42

If I try to remember what it was like to be the deep FF-believer that I was over 30 years ago, I’d say that FFrs view E Tolle as not on the same level as RB and the FF. FFrs view the FF as the one, true School (capital S), after which every other teacher or guru or school is not “real.” They probably see interest in Tolle as providing magnetic centers with a wonderful opportunity to meet a real School with a Conscious Being. All of the failed predictions and abuses and mishandling of worldly affairs are inconsequential, denied and excused, when someone is totally immersed in that kind of mind control.

It is beyond having misplaced vision and loyalty. I met GD around 1974 when he joined the FF, and socialized a little bit with PM in the mid 80s, but don’t claim to know them well. However, we can surmise how their thinking goes, as dedicated FF students. They simply don’t perceive themselves as lassoing innocent magnetic centers into a cult. They see themselves as presenting a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to people who are drawn to Tolle’s B Influence message. When I was deep in the FF in the mid-late 70s, I would have thought the same. Hence, their immediate removal of Ames from their site. Of course there is zero openness. They saw Ames’ message as a threat.

63. Josiane - September 2, 2011

58.
“Myself and others have worked for GD, and we all agreed that he is/was a lunatic. It was in the early 80s that I worked for him for $7 an hour. Then one day he cut my wages to $6/h without any explanation.”

According to you Gr… D… may be a lunatic but it still does not make him a liar covering for FoF.

64. brucelevy - September 2, 2011

I worked with GD for about a year in the Bay Area when I was ousted from the ranch for a period for not doing what RB wanted me to do. While he can be unassuming sometimes, he is a passive aggressive lunatic. And he’s definitely a true believer, and he would do whatever RB asked of him. I don’t know the others but Abdullah has presented himself pretty clearly by his letter. Just another sociopath with his nose up RB’s ass.

And now that his gig is being discussed here, regardless of him not wanting to hear anything from Ames, I’d bet the farm that he’s reading these posts.

65. Red Hat - September 2, 2011

Whatever kind of scam Eckhart Tolle is running, he has a right to demand that the Fellowship of Friends think up its own scam, and not piggyback onto his.

66. Shirley - September 2, 2011

They don’t see themselves as catalysts for sucking people into a group dynamic that will really mess up their minds and emotions, and make them broke.

Whether they are sincere or deceitful is, to me, not the primary issue. It is that they are providing a conduit to the FF, for the massive amounts of people who find value in Tolle’s message. Meaning, they may be sincere in their endeavors to broaden the inroads into the FF by putting Tolle as an avenue in. But the net effect is the same: people will probably hear something about the FF as “a real School” that practices the power of “Now”, Living Presence, ad nauseum. And then the rap about the prospective student meetings. Speaking of which:

What happened to Golden Veil’s suggestion about the concise list of questions that prospective students should ask, should they see this blog? Someone folllowed that suggestion with some good questions, and Ames had the link to an earlier page of this blog with his suggested questions.

67. brucelevy - September 2, 2011

“What happened to Golden Veil’s suggestion about the concise list of questions that prospective students should ask, should they see this blog?”

I’m sure, much like Scientology, any provocative questions at perspective student meetings would would be immediately quashed one way or another. They would end the meeting, or ask the person to leave, or suggest the person was sent there as a provocateur. It might only upset that particular meeting, which wouldn’t be all bad. They would have to create a new set of meeting criteria to keep it from happening…like no question during the meeting, only one on one after or before, to protect the mystique.

I don’t know for sure but one shouldn’t be naive. When I was 18 I went to an introductory Scientology thingy just on a lark. I tried to ask some pertinent questions and some of the “ethics officers” immediately escorted me out.

So while the “questions” could be a useful tactic, they are likely to have a limited efficacy. But I guess any inroads to limiting further destruction to people’s psyches, even on a small scale, would be good, and maybe “jamb a few jacks” as we used to say.

In fact, if these posts are being read,…

68. Tim Campion - September 2, 2011

64. bruce levy

“And now that his gig is being discussed here, regardless of him not wanting to hear anything from Ames, I’d bet the farm that he’s reading these posts.”

***

Since I was unable to send this directly to Abdallah via his Meetup site, I’ll include it here with the hope he’s now a regular reader:

Dear Abdallah,

You don’t know me, but I am a former member of Robert Burton’s “school”. I commend you for taking the time to clarify on your Meetup site the nature of your pursuit and the group’s non-affiliation with the Fellowship of Friends.

In the interest of full disclosure, I think it would also be fair to your members (and prospective members) to openly state the nature of your personal affiliation with the Fellowship of Friends. (As well as those of Peter, Gregory, Mario, and Alex.)

I must admit that Ames had reason to be suspicious, given that all the group organizers mentioned are Fellowship of Friends members. If his message to you (copied above) seemed harsh, you might try to understand his reasons for expressing such strong feelings. A fundamental requirement in the Fourth Way is to trust your teacher absolutely. However, Robert Burton is not a legitimate teacher. And when this was eventually revealed to Ames, he felt a profound violation of the trust he had invested in his “teacher” over many years. (And in this regard, Ames is far from alone.)

Unfortunately, your decision to characterize Ames’ comments as “negativity”, and thus deserving of censorship, is simply a mechanical response, culturally instilled and enforced by Robert Burton. In his school (as in all fascist regimes) this assures dissent will be stifled. That it is has served Burton so well all these years is testament to the power of mind control (not The Power of Now.) Fear of confrontation is also well-entrenched in Fellowship culture and keeps members from learning, and advancing.

Censorship of “negativity” has nothing to do with presence, or the lack thereof. One can indeed be present and “negative”. (Remember that “consciousness is not functions”. Robert Burton is especially capable of such contradictory behavior!)

Summary censorship also establishes a poor example for your Meetup participants. It is understandable that you may not wish to see such a discussion on a page promoting your group, but I would suggest there is a higher road to take in such matters, and that is to find an appropriate forum to discuss the matter.

If, as you express, your intents are entirely altruistic and have no connection to Robert Burton, I wish you well in your endeavor. It might indeed enrich others’ lives. However, it is essential that it be free of Burton’s taint. (I use the term intentionally and with understanding of the impact he has had on so many.)

For those of us who knew Robert Burton personally and who have studied his 40-year reign, there can be no doubt his teaching has been illegitimate from the start. Many thousands of seekers have verified this. And some of us, acting from conscience, feel we cannot stand idly by – we must accept some responsibility for what we indeed helped create. Thus you see the continuing attempt to thwart Burton’s schemes.

I hope your group will discuss the concepts of honesty and conscience, for where there is true presence you’ll also find these virtues. They are inseparable. Unfortunately, for Robert Burton and his followers, this is a very uncomfortable topic.

Best wishes,

Tim Campion

69. Red Hat - September 2, 2011

And some of us, acting from conscience, feel we cannot stand idly by – we must accept some responsibility for what we indeed helped create.

Bingo.

70. Wondering Who’s Watching - September 2, 2011

’38. Red Hat – September 1, 2011
12 WWW

1) The “food distribution”. . .’

Agreed. Or, better: a greed. Know it when you see it.

‘2) The Fellowship of Friends never paid. . .’

Agreed. Very likely, however, this, as you say, causes insurers to back off, but also, leads to insurers raising premiums in line with the risks. So, eventually payment of some kind is made. This scenario, for example, caused FoF to stop employing all but the most critical employees, where all others were classified as ‘religious workers’ that were ‘volunteers.’ Doing that saved FoF a bundle on all sorts of costs, not just insurance premiums. That meant that they did not have to pay minimum wage. Those people were getting a stipend.

71. nigel - September 2, 2011

Thought a little about Ames Gilbert and his aim for joining the Fellowship of Friends…..

THE UNFOLDING OF CONSCIENCE

It seems a little dicotomous to me that being in a group (with all the ‘group think’ that involves – and especially a cult) should lead to a ‘right attitude’ that would be evoked by conscience. I am not sure conscience was present for my last year in the ‘FOF Group’, when I was getting more and more heavily into debt and not knowing if I could ever pay back what I owed to both my business ‘backers’ and the credit card companies – and whether that conscience led to my depression (a guilty conscience?).

That getting into debt did not stop away from the cult as I ran up bills I could not pay just living a ‘wayward life’. Without being too humorously vain, might I state that I was the ‘Price that was Paid’. Now I have a well-founded business, I feel I have to ‘stay in the black’ and not rely on my father to continously ‘bail me out’. If I have to do with little food for a few days because of a low income, I do that (and my dog gets fed first). I feel frugality is a ‘higher aim’ at this time.

I feel, for the sake of having Ames listen, if he has not stopped reading my posts (as he said he would), that conscience is a ‘benchmark’ for living one’s life as a separate person, yet part of one’s community in life.

It is not a bad thing to feel ‘small yet consequential’ in the Realm of the Universe…..Nigel.

P.S. For anyone who would like to know a little more about what I do for a living – the website is http://www.apma-uk.co.uk.

72. Wouldnt You Like To Know - September 2, 2011

’13. nigel – August 31, 2011
This is something that Eckhart Tolle says…..

(somewhat akin to Burton saying – “Consciousness is not functions”)

No wonder they are trying to ‘pirate’ Tolle…..

“The realm of consciousness is much vaster than thought can grasp. When you no longer believe everything you think, you step out of thought and see clearly that the thinker is not who you are.”’

Well said. That took thought. But, also:

Thought is much vaster than you think thought was before you had consciousness expansion experience in your being. Get my thought here?

Who is the thinker and who the thought? And, who has whom?

Try these thoughts:

If the dull substance of my flesh were thought,
Injurious distance should not stop my way;
For then despite of space I would be brought,
From limits far remote where thou dost stay.
No matter then although my foot did stand
Upon the farthest earth removed from thee;
For nimble thought can jump both sea and land
As soon as think the place where he would be.
But ah! thought kills me that I am not thought,
To leap large lengths of miles when thou art gone,
But that so much of earth and water wrought
I must attend time’s leisure with my moan,
Receiving nought by elements so slow
But heavy tears, badges of either’s woe.
Sonnet 44
William Shakespeare

‘Alabad al Señor en el cosmo
Su santuario
de un radio de 100.000 millones de años luz
Alabadle por las estrellas
y los espacios inter-estelares
alabadle por las galaxias
y los espacios inter-galáxicos
Alabadle por los átomos
y los vacíos inter-atómicos. . .’
Salmo 150
Ernesto Cardenal

‘Praise the lord in the cosmos,
his sanctuary,
the radius of a hundred thousand million light years.
Praise him through the stars
and the interstellar spaces.
Praise him for the galaxies
and the intergalactic spaces.
Praise him for the atoms
and the interatomic voids. . .’

‘¿Qué hay en una estrella?
Nosotros mismos.
Todos los elementos de nuestro cuerpo y del planeta
estuvieron en las entrañas de una estrella.
Somos polvo de estrellas.’
Canto Cósmico
Ernesto Cardenal

‘What’s in a star?
We are.
All the elements of our body and the planet
were once in the belly of a star.
We are stardust.’

73. nigel - September 2, 2011

72. WYLTK

That post was mind-blowing and expansive!!!!!…..Nigel.

74. Magoo - September 2, 2011

68
Abdallah’s email – lasamaha@sbcglobal.net

75. Magoo - September 2, 2011

MF – mfantoni@syix.com
GD – corinthian@succeed.net
Alex – alex@dreampop.com
PM – not listed.

76. Magoo - September 2, 2011

Since the Theatron was shut down they moved the Ballet performances to the tennis court. The Tennis court was decorated and people will sit on raised benches all squeezed like sardines in a can.
The benches had pathways where people could go up and down the risers.
So I am sitting watching the Ballet and having good time, then suddenly a Russian guest with a DSLR camera comes to sit next to me on the steps, and he started to ‘shoot’ pictures continuously and his camera made a lot of noise Klick click click. I said to myself ‘shit’. At first I looked around me at the faces of the students that sat around me and they all seemed unaffected as if nothing is going on. After about 10 minutes of Click, click, click I said to myself ‘here is a chance to work on inner considering’. I turned to my side and told the so called guest to stop or move to another location. Again I looked around me and the people acted as if nothing is going on.
At the break I told the organizers about my discontent, but they did nothing. They told me that he was a guest and we should treat him with respect. So I left the scene.
Later I asked the Ballet managers for my money back and I was told no. I asked if I could have a ticket for the next performance I was told no.
What pissed me was not the guest but the people around me not reacting to the guest making noise.
Well now I know I was in a cult.

77. Bares Reposting - September 2, 2011

Magoo!
How do you do?
Is this you?:

You see, oh so very well.

This life’s dim windows of the soul
Distorts the heavens from pole to pole
And leads you to believe a lie
When you see with, not through, the eye.
~ William Blake

78. Kid Shelleen - September 2, 2011

I’ll Never Tell,

“Didn’t you mean: ‘Herman’s Hermits?’
Possible better example might be: as the Monkees were to the Beatles? (Except Monkees not British;-)))”

No, I actually meant “Hermit’s Hermits. They were one of the first tribute bands, playing authentic sounding recreations of “Mrs. Brown…”, “I’m Henry The Eighth..”, etc. So, not unlike Robert, they are twice (thrice?) removed from any real connection to…Just kidding, sorry for the typo/senior moment.

I realized after I posted that the real comparison, esoterically speaking, should have been “Freddie and the Dreamers!”

I do, however, take exception to your comments re: The Monkees. At the height of their popularity they had some of the best song writers in America feeding them material and the best studio players in L.A. cutting their instrumental backings. Great vocals (mostly), catchy tunes, the perfect pop confection for my pre/early teen AM radio mind. Oh, and “I’m A Believer”; best song Neil Diamond ever wrote.

Not the Beatles, but not bad.

And now back to your regular programming, already in progress.

79. Arthur - September 2, 2011

The quotes from #’s 72 and 76 are priceless. Thanks, makes me think of going to starry space to sit at Socrates feet and Shakespeare’s lap.

Nigel,

I looked at your shop’s art work. Pretty and good.

80. X-ray - September 2, 2011

63

Josiene,
You have a tendency to defend the lunatics who are apparently more obvious to others than to you.
If you still don’t understand that a true fof believers will do anything they need to protect burton, even if that will mean to lie to you, or hurt you, than you really haven’t learn much in there.

And to say that Mario Fantoni is an altruist, it´s like to say that burton is a pet lover.

81. Arthur - September 2, 2011

Which would you rather do now that you’ve been exposed to Robert E. Burton?

Sit in on one of Robert E. Burton’s ‘teaching sessions’ or sit by yourself somewhere far away contemplating this.

“The teacher if he is indeed wise does not bid you enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you enter the treshold of your mind”..
Gibran Kahlil

Sequencing rhino poop or giving your mind a rest.

82. X-ray - September 2, 2011

75

Good story, Magoo. Thank you.
I understand your feelings. I would probebly fight with this shcmuck right there, but you had more patience.
This story is reminding me a despotic father who would invite his friends to a dinner, while his childred would be locked in their room hungry.

My respect goes to you and if more people would be like you, then this crooked circle fellowship of friends or more correclty fellowship o fake friends, would be shut down long ago.

83. Magoo - September 2, 2011

Josiane 63
X-ray is right again.Yes you are trying to defend GD.

One day GD wakes up and says to himself I need to SHARE PRESENCE with others and I am going to make up a poster using Eckert Toll in my logo to attract other people who want to be present
that I can share my presence. Even if GD was SINCERE in his efforts, does that sounds like a NORMAL way of doing it?
Remember that when you are in a cult ‘Being Present’ is secondary to pleasing the Boss Burton.
Also like I said before do not estimate the power of meeting someone from the opposite sex as powerful motivator.

84. WhaleRider - September 2, 2011

Buy Now, Pay Later

Tolle writes:

“The realm of consciousness is much vaster than thought can grasp. When you no longer believe everything you think, you step out of thought and see clearly that the thinker is not who you are.”’

Ok, I am not just my cerebral cortex…but I am not just my amygdala either, and neither am I the tyrannical homunculus now sitting in my head that I had to create to watch myself thinking.

Sorry, Tolle, the realm of the great collective unconscious of which Jung speaks is much vaster than thought can grasp; so is the size of the universe…and the power of compounding interest into the future, helping to keep the wealthy always on top like Mr Morrow.

Consciousness is an interdependent function of the brain, along with everything else it does for us without consciousness.

To believe that it is separate is a fallacy of the brain attempting to know itself using itself and reductionist thinking.

Sure it might be self-calming to believe that your consciousness can outlive your functions and to think that by identifying with that part of your mind will somehow help you escape the fated death of your body.

I am all for the Power of Now, it helps me from stubbing my toe more than I do, but it doesn’t help me process the past, which is still quite a potent and unseen force in our subconscious minds that we cannot ignore by shackling our awareness to the present.

Afterall, isn’t this blog emblematic of pastor burton’s past catching up with him?

Burton uses “being present” as his license to commit crimes against our humanity….it doesn’t matter what he does as long as it causes his followers to be present…is sociopathic logic.

85. Tim Campion - September 2, 2011

84. WhaleRider

“Consciousness is an interdependent function of the brain, along with everything else it does for us without consciousness.

“To believe that it is separate is a fallacy of the brain attempting to know itself using itself and reductionist thinking.”

***

Is the debate then settled?

86. Ames Gilbert - September 2, 2011

X-Ray, Bruce and others, don’t worry, I’ve not gone over to the dark side quite yet. I mentioned that it was possible that Abdallah and co. were acting altruistically, which is not the same as probable. It is also possible, but even less probable, that Burton will experience remorse and apologize for his actions and work for the rest of his life to ameliorate the damage he has caused.

My best guess is that they are practicing “intentional insincerity”, both in the groups and in their ‘explanations’ on the websites or by e-mail. Otherwise known as lying. It starts with the lie of omission (not stating their membership of the Fellowship of Friends), but they also mention the ‘FOF’ teaching as if it were valid and equal to others in the list, specifically mentioning it as a Fourth Way–based organization. So that is there, dangling. Do they expect us to believe that they have refused to answer questions about the Fellowship of Friends? That they have never explained the reasons why they already have improvements on Eckhart Tolle’s teachings? That they have not explained the source of these superior techniques for ‘being here now’? That they have refrained from mentioning the ‘free introductory meetings’ to prospective marks after softening them up?

One thing I do believe might be true is that they indeed may have had no success so far actually hooking new followers. Abdallah seems particularly inept, and moreover displays a repellent authoritarian teaching style, something he has learned only too well in the Fellowship of Friends. He has been taught that all the knowledge flows from the top down, from the licensed interpreters and enlightened intermediaries to the fawning supplicants. For sure he has absorbed the meme that there is nothing for Burton to learn from any of his followers or their life experiences or explorations; Burton already knows everything worth knowing.

_________________________________
Tim, (#111-68 or thereabouts), you write, “I hope your group will discuss the concepts of honesty and conscience, for where there is true presence you’ll also find these virtues. They are inseparable. Unfortunately, for Robert Burton and his followers, this is a very uncomfortable topic.”

More than uncomfortable!
In 1994, Burton said, “Conscience is just a collection of I’s. Anyone accumulating too much should leave the school”.

Any present or prospective members of the Fellowship reading this: Run as fast as you can away from Burton the spiritual charlatan, Burton the sexual predator! The worst that can happen is that you become free; the best—is up to you.

87. X-ray - September 2, 2011

83

´´One day GD wakes up and says to himself I need to SHARE PRESENCE with others and I am going to make up a poster using Eckert Toll in my logo to attract other people who want to be present
that I can share my presence. Even if GD was SINCERE in his efforts, does that sounds like a NORMAL way of doing it?´´

Definitely a point.
Of course it doesn´t sounds normal. It sounds fraudulent instead. But you see, these people are fraudsters in their core and all they do is lying. But what is more pathetic is while they lie, they think they doing good.

88. silentpurr - September 2, 2011

But they may actually believe in the need for “fresh blood” which comes in the form of the “new student”. New students are fresh, energetic and naive…
On the subject of comparing REB with the financially successful Gurus, I’d say that The PHARAOHS might more represent REB since the Fellowship has “slaves” whereas those other guys have only servants.
Besides, the Theatron’s design layout looks suspicisly

89. silentpurr - September 2, 2011

…suspiciously Egyptian!

90. nigel - September 2, 2011

84. WhaleRider

(from Google-ing)

Amygdala:
The amygdala is an almond shaped mass of nuclei located deep within the temporal lobe of the brain. It is a limbic system structure that is involved in many of our emotions and motivations, particularly those that are related to survival. The amygdala is involved in the processing of emotions such as fear, anger and pleasure. The amygdala is also responsible for determining what memories are stored and where the memories are stored in the brain. It is thought that this determination is based on how huge an emotional response an event invokes.

Function:
The amygdala is involved in several functions of the body including:
•Arousal
•Autonomic Responses Associated with Fear
•Emotional Responses
•Hormonal Secretions
•Memory

Location:
Directionally, the amygdala is located deep within the temporal lobes, medial to the hypothalamus and adjacent to the hippocampus.

WHALERIDER – COULD YOU SHED SOME MORE (INNER) LIGHT ON THIS PART OF THE BRAIN – THE SORT OF REACTIONS THAT GO ON INWARDLY/OUTWARDLY, FUNCTIONING ETC. WITH THANKS IN ADVANCE…..Nigel.

91. Josiane - September 2, 2011

63. X-Ray
X-Ray
I have appreciated your comments and stories since you came back on this blog. Seems that you went through a lot during your time in FoF.

Why is it, however, that you find the need to react to my posts? I am one of the few who post here with a moderate voice. Maybe I don’t belong here since the vast majority of the posts are, shall I say “of a particular mindset.” I would have hoped that this blog, unlike the Fellowship, would be open-minded enough to allow different views on the topics being discussed. After all, one of the (many) reasons we all left FoF was because of groupthink, isn’t it? Everybody had to think the same way. Well, every time I have posted something on this blog, someone has reacted to me accusing me of all sorts of things: I am in denial, I defend lunatics, I don’t have all the details, I am misguided, etc. I am not sure why I continue following this blog. There are many factors for sure such as, it is still a place to find the most current information on what’s happening in FoF. It also has good conversations and, I guess my healing is not complete. I also try to chip in some inside information that comes my way since I am still so close to the headquarters. But, most importantly, I am interested in the truth. And what I post is what I perceive to be the truth in my own subjective view.

I really feel that it best serves the purpose of this blog if, rather than turning against bloggers who have different views from others and try to “correct” them, it might be more beneficial to stay on track and remember what the aim is, which as has been stated by many, multiple.

Thanks for listening.

92. brucelevy - September 2, 2011

91. Josiane

You really need to be able to deal with this on your own. This isn’t the same environment that the FOF represents (no negativity). I understand you may, by nature, have a “thin skin”, which is fine if you wish to maintain that, but don’t expect the environment to change because you’re uncomfortable with it. You take the freedom to put out there what you believe. That’s as it should be. Just as any response within the guidelines is equally valid.. You need to deal with it, not X-Ray. He has his stuff, you have your stuff, everyone has their stuff. If anyone can’t handle it, then all one has to do is not participate. It’s pretty simple.

93. X-ray - September 2, 2011

91 Josiane,

Fof is only a part of my life and not the biggest one. I went thru a lot before joining and after leaving. Yet, I have learn more about the nature of lies in the fof than in all my years combined before and after the FOF.
You not the only one to whom I respond, Josiane, and I have nothing against you personally but I see in you things which are not obvious to you and you feeling hurt because you don´t see it yourself.
Indeed it is an open forum and everyone can say here anything he wants but if you say that ´´black is white´´ and I know for a fact that this is not so, then I will tell you that. And if there are more people who are telling you the same, then you might want to listen.
You say you interested in the truth, but you denying that very thing you seeking. The truth is simply what it is, but you may not see it, or like it, because it doesn´t fit in your version of it. It´s like students who are carrying an idea about burton in their heads, worshiping and defending it, denying the truth about him which doesn’t fit their version of it. Same with you. You want your version of the truth, a convenient truth, so to speak, but as I said, truth is what it is, convenient or not.
You said that what you post is what you perceive in your subjective view, and I respect that, but I would also tell you that other people´s perception might be more objective than yours due to a different factors and only assuming that as a possibility, might serve you well on your search.
And this is the only reason why I call myself X-ray, because I see thru lies like X-ray sees thru cloths.

94. Shirley - September 3, 2011

x-Ray, you may be misreading Josiane’s #57. I don’t think she was defending GD or PM in her post 57. I read it a few times. I think what she said was similar to my post 66.

I’ll speak for myself, because I don’t want to put words in J’s mouth: For the people that we knew as FF acquaintances from the 70s and 80s, GD and PM, we assume they are very deep into the FF and believe that it’s the only “real School.” Any corruption that they see and are aware of gets denied or somehow accommodated. The view is that they are extending the FF’s reach into life – which we don’t like and wish it could be stopped – but it does not mean that GD and PM are outright “liars.” They may be deluding themselves that RB is conscious, and a good person. They may even feel conflicted about what they are doing, if they see how bad it is in the FF. But I don’t think J. or I are defending GD or PM.

I also don’t feel that I am excusing GD or PM, by my position. It’s the difference between saying that a person is innately a bad person, and saying that the action that they are taking is harmful and bad. If they do a harmful or bad act, then the next question is: are they truly aware of the harm that they are committing? Or are they in such denial about the FF, with blinders on, and have misguided loyalty to RB, that they are virtual FF-automatons?

xRay, having said the above, one of the things I appreciate about you is how direct and perceptive you are. It doesn’t mean you are always correct, and I like that you are willing to go back and forth on issues. One piece of baggage that many of us carry from the FF (myself included – maybe not you) is resistance to disputation and being openly contradicted. I’ve tried to get over that, since leaving the FF. In fact, I said earlier, at the end of pg 108-top of 109, that I felt the FF tendency to banish any expressions of “negative emotions” was a way of suppressing us, altogether. I think it ended up being part of the automaton behavior that FF members acquired.

92

Bruce, I remember being out of the FF for a few years, when my NY boss was told that someone in our dept was “upset” about something. He said, “That’s not my problem. That’s her problem.” I was surprised to hear that, in the context of the conflict. But I never forgot his reaction, and over the years, have tried to look harder at conflicts to see what is “this” person’s problem vs. “that” person’s problem. It has been very helpful in clarifying and separating out many issues when they get sticky and heated.

95. Anna - September 3, 2011

Josiane, Shirley,

Post under a man’s name. You get treated better.

Trust me. I’ve tried it.

96. Shirley - September 3, 2011

I’d like to add that I don’t have well-defined thoughts about good and evil. Perhaps like many people, I know what repels me, but can’t always articulate why. For ex., why do I feel that RB is in a different class of malevolence than the guys doing the Meet Up groups? Is it the scale of RB’s acts, and how he deliberately misguides so many people who are “searching for the miraculous” (etc)? On the other hand, I looked at one of the Meet-Up sites when Ames mentioned it, and saw Ames’ comment, before Abd. removed it. I think the removal of Ames’ comment indicates the lack of openness of the Meet-Up sites, and that those sites are not for true discussions but to encourage new people to find themselves attracted to the FF people leading those meetings and, before you know it, find themselves at FF prospective student meetings.

97. For the record - September 3, 2011

Josiane and Shirley,

Something to think about: Maybe your inability to see malevolence in your former fellow fof followers is the same inability that most of us had for a certain amount of time in seeing the malevolence in Robert Burton.

I won’t try to answer that for either of you — you’ll have to do that for yourselves. But for me, that was definitely the case. Just as it was difficult for me to believe that someone I considered a friend in the FOF would knowingly lie about important matters, it was difficult for me to believe the same about Robert Burton. Eventually I could see that Robert Burton was “a liar” — which by the way, just means someone who habitually lies.

It takes no stretch of the imagination to realize that his closest followers would adopt and imitate and manifest the same trait. When you’re defending your tenaciously held view of the world that you have stubbornly held onto for many years, and especially when the ego gets involved defending your supposed superiority over others, lying seems like a small thing.

The more you push back at Bruce and X-Ray, the more I wonder whether or not you’ve entirely escaped from the cult and its group think. Remember: Probably the main ingredient for keeping people on board with everything is to convince them that things really aren’t that bad, and that people in the group really aren’t that bad. At some point, sensing a malignancy is the only way to really remove yourself — both physically and mentally and emotionally.

98. X-ray - September 3, 2011

And Josiane,

I don´t want to sounds like another gury here, I hate gurus and to be called as one, would be an insult to me, but I would like to share with you my view on healing which is based on observation of myself and others.
There is no healing by denial. Truth is the best doctor. It hurts you first like a surgeon, but it lets you truly heal after that. To avoid the truth and to try to remain always positive, is not only wrong and misleading idea but also harmful to your mental and emotional health. It is the same self-deception we trying to heal from.
My suggestion, instead trying to be always positive, be rather real, truthful and honest with yourself. This artificial positivity is nothing but a self induced trance which only maintains fake reality.

95 Shirley

I would think that to be perceptive would imply to be correct as well, otherwise is sounds somewhat contradictory.

99. Shirley - September 3, 2011

I agree with what you say about perceptive. Maybe it’s our interpretation of what we perceive that colors and influences the perception. Meaning, our mind takes the perception and tries to “make” sense out of it, and during that process, we might come out with somewhat inaccurate conclusions.

Actually, after I hit the Post Comment button, I had second thoughts about what I said in 94. I asked myself what the criteria is for determining that a person is evil (or good) (or somewhere in between). Why do we feel confident that we can say that Hitler or Stalin are evil? If Hitler was evil, how about all of his henchmen who did what he asked them to do to the Jews? Were they just as evil? Or were they less evil, because they “only did what they were asked” or were afraid to disobey the big boss or maybe they were power hungry bureaucrats. The act of committing atrocities is still abhorrent, but I’m thinking about the importance of a person’s motivations.

I don’t understand RB. To some extent, I can understand GD and PM, because I’ve been on that side of the fence. But RB is incomprehensible to me, in terms of how he can justify to himself that he does what he does, and for so many decades. It’s as though people were expendable to him.

100. fofblogmoderator - September 3, 2011

95 & 97 are new

101. Golden Veil - September 3, 2011

“…But RB is incomprehensible to me, in terms of how he can justify to himself that he does what he does, and for so many decades. It’s as though people were expendable to him.”

I think that you’re right on track, Shirley. And some of us have acted in ways which you could say we treated our own selves as expendable, buying into one form of the Fellowship of Friends enslavement ~ actual physical or at the very least emotional.

Remember the fairy tale “The Emperor Has No Clothes” by Hans Christian Andersen? Two weavers promise an Emperor a beautiful suit of clothes that they say will be invisible to those unfit for their position in the royal court, are stupid, or incompetent. When the Emperor parades before his subjects in his “new clothes” ~ absolutely nude ~ a child cries out, “But he isn’t wearing anything at all!”

Let’s keep being the child “in this play” as “The Emperor” aka “The Teacher” might say… Yes, call it as it is, speak your truth, say what you see.

At the same time, I believe that observations framed in crassness and obscenity do not necessarily equate the truth. Consideration is an invention of society that enables people to get along and social boundaries have a purpose. Don’t forget the old adage, “May he who is without sin throw the first stone.” Also, “The Truth” can be quite subjective, can’t it?

Another saying I hear a lot these days, often spoken in a tone of resignation, is “It is what it is.” But, I think if it’s regarding something that is truly terrible it might be better to feel upset and express it rather than to just shelve feelings under the old “It is what it is.” That kind of intentional disconnect from perceived negativity doesn’t serve emotional health.

102. Tim Campion - September 3, 2011

95. Anna

For all we know Josiane and Shirley might be Jose and Charlie, and you might be Anatoli! In this digital world, things are not necessarily what they seem.

And what did you observe in your experiments (besides having much clearer thinking while impersonating a man)?

(I’m just joking – REALLY!)

103. X-ray - September 3, 2011

95

Sorry Anna, but you have posted a stupid comment.
First of all I don´t know who is who here for fact, secondly, if I would know, I still would say what I say, and thirdly, if your pet would like to comment here too, I would treat him according to his posts rather than to who he is.
Now, if you wish to create a false devision between woman and man here than you waisting your time, since I am a woman lover and the only reason my last few posts were polite and respectful, was because I assumed that I was talking to woman, and out of respect I talked to them the way I talked and if that would be a man, then my choice of words would be very different (ask moderator, he knows).
And if you were previously mistreated here, I think it had to do whith what you posted, not with who you are.

104. We Were There - September 3, 2011

I don’t feel Anna’s statement was stupid.

I always liked the concept of ‘angle of thought.’

It seems obvious to me that we each see part of the larger ‘truth’ through the filter of our unique life experiences and mechanics (our ‘being,’ if you will).

Using that phrase can remind me to try to see how another’s take on a situation can bear truth, no matter how it much it initially seems to contradict mine.

105. Shirley - September 3, 2011

97 For the Record

“The more you push back at Bruce and X-Ray, the more I wonder whether or not you’ve entirely escaped from the cult and its group think. Remember: Probably the main ingredient for keeping people on board with everything is to convince them that things really aren’t that bad, and that people in the group really aren’t that bad. At some point, sensing a malignancy is the only way to really remove yourself — both physically and mentally and emotionally.”

Speaking for myself (again) and not for J., I wasn’t pushing back at either Bruce or X-Ray. Maybe it’s better not to over-group individuals (J. and me vs. B. & xR.) on the Meet-Up matter, because I’d like to avoid an Us vs. Them dynamic here. Josiane and I had, and continue to have, different FF/ post-FF experiences; and I didn’t see Bruce and xRay as having identical messages to Josiane or me.

I agree with Bruce and xRay (if I read them correctly on this matter) that it is better to see the truth of matter than to shy away from “expressions of negativity.” My only quibble (at this point) would be to ask, do we all see the same truth? We may see or perceive something correctly, and it hits home that we have seen the truth about a matter. But my experience, post-FF, is that in between the time that we’ve had that insight or perception, and something in us tries to interpret and articulate it, that there may be some subjective distortion. Our subjective experiences and personal values and having sufficient knowledge of the facts of a matter, all influence our perceptions. I don’t think any of this is esoteric or cult-related.

Part of what I was trying to say was that I distinguished RB’s students from RB himself. One reason I do that is because I don’t picture PM or GD as doing what RB does. They may be doing what he asked them to do or what they imagine he’d like them to do (such as using the Meet-Up groups as avenues in to the FF). But that is different from the many things people have described here on the blog – the revolving door of young men who are doted on with presents that our teaching payments paid for; the ill-treatment of salaried workers, some of which was just lack of common sense and, at its worst, manifestations of inhumanity; the endless fund-raising efforts to finance ridiculous dreams of grandeur (artwork, Theatron, constant travel). Can you picture PM or GD as stepping in RB’s shoes and, literally, doing that? I haven’t seen either of them in 25+ years, but I cannot. RB is in a class of his own, and it’s not a class any one should want to be in. That was partly my point. You don’t want to conflate a group of people who are brainwashed into doing the kingpin’s wishes to be at the kingpin’s level. Some day, PM or GD or others may leave the FF. I don’t see RB as having remorse and saying, “Guys, I’m really sorry I inflicted so much suffering on you.”

I don’t think we should see everything as having esoteric significance, or having a bearing on whether any of us has “entirely escaped from the cult and its group think.” You could posit that each one of us who joined the FF and believed in it and stayed in it for a significant length of time, retains a seed of understanding of what it was like to be that person that joined the FF. That makes an ex-FFr as still vulnerable to cult and group-think? Not necessarily.

106. Shirley - September 3, 2011

95

Anna’s suggestion raises the perennial question of how much we are influenced by knowing whether it is a man or a woman that we are dealing with.

It also again raises the question of using aliases or one’s real name on the blog. Even though it seems to be accepted protocol on blogs to use aliases, there are pros and cons in a blog where the posters are generally from the same group (FF), as opposed to a Yahoo group where any person and their mother can post. Pros would be that you’d know who was posting, so you could have a fuller experience of your communication. Cons would be that you’d know who was posting, and there’d be some baggage if you felt your readers couldn’t separate your “angles of thought” from their assumptions and preconceived notions of you.

107. X-ray - September 3, 2011

104 Were you there or you still there?

There is only one truth, whether you see it or not.
If burton has been proven a lier over the years then this is the only truth there is but if you don’t see it then the problem is in you. And I don’t care what is ´´another take´´ on it as long as I have the facts.
So if you want to masturbate back and forth again, then please spare me from that.
You remind me the fellowship saying ´´there is always a higher truth´´. No, there aren´t levels in it but there are levels in gullibility, obviously.
Sometime I get a feeling that some of you here didn’t leave the fellowship and still dwell in its sick mentality.

108. Ames Gilbert - September 3, 2011

Shirley, (#111-105 or thereabouts),
I agree with you that it is worth keeping in mind that Peter Morrow or Gregory Dixon or Alex Ayuli or Mario Fantoni will not act in the world the same way as Robert Burton does. But, I believe that their motives mirror Burton’s corrupted motives, and it is worth bearing this in mind. For example, Burton believes that the ends justifies the means, and I can think of many, many examples of how this corrupted viewpoint has influenced the actual actions of his followers in the material world; how Mario Fantoni actually behaves was exemplified previously on this page.

When you say you cannot understand Burton, I believe that is because you, as a normal human being with a conscience and capable of remorse, cannot understand a sociopath, which is what I believe Burton is. It really is as hard as a blind person understanding the color violet, one can only go so far with analogies before the model collapses and one is left floundering; the fact is, to truly understand violet, you have to actually experience it. A sociopath simply does not have the organ of conscience, and in fact quickly (in very early childhood, at the age of two or three, in studies I’ve read) picks up on this weakness of ordinary people and starts to exploit it. Sociopaths simply cannot understand what they are lacking, though they can learn to simulate the outcomes as if they had a conscience, and the rest of us are usually ready to give any benefit of the doubt until it is too late.
In the short run, Burton can say things like, “Thank you, dear”, or “I love you” at the appropriate time, and we take that at face value. In the long run, we can see that in actuality he doesn’t mean these words, that he casts people aside like soiled tissues, that he has no compunction, that he is incapable of forming deep relationships, that anything that gets in the way of his gratifications is summarily removed, that pandering to his weaknesses is the surest way to get closer to him.

As Burton developed the organization of the Fellowship of Friends, he attracted those who are comfortable with his management style, who agreed with him and satisfied his needs. So it is worth studying the folks on the Board, the Council, those who transmit and depend on his authority, the gatekeepers who zealously guard his time and attention. It is worth studying those who seek to please him or gain his attention. In my studies, I saw his methods mirrored by those around him, and the mirroring of the actions (not the words) of this ‘conscious being’ also included the corruption. Thus, in my perspective, even though any particular follower might have a conscience, any promptings from that conscience is submerged by the need to conform to what they sincerely believe is the appropriate behavior of a ‘conscious being’. Burton is the only model they know, and Ouspensky himself did not help when he quoted Gurdjieff as saying, “If a man understands that he is asleep and if he wishes to awake, then everything that helps him to awake will be good, and everything that prolongs his sleep, will be evil”. Just like the concept of placing one’s will in the hands of the teacher, this idea is also ripe for misunderstanding and exploitation.

So, I think it would be safe to assume that the psychology of otherwise well-meaning followers would be corrupted by the examples around them, the most important being Burton. Modeling oneself on the behavior of a psychopath must inevitably mean normalizing psychopathic behavior in oneself, and certainly the normalizing of the idea that the ends justifies the means is a classic example. After all, no effort to ‘advance one’s evolution’ or to ‘experience higher states’ or to ‘achieve the aims of the school’ is too much, no sacrifice is too much. Committing oneself to “whatever it takes” is necessary, right? What is a little lying here or obfuscation there couched as ‘intentional insincerity’ when the ends are so noble and pure? And spreading the light and advancing the agenda of 44 angels and founding the next civilization all at the same time must be about the noblest endeavor on the planet.

109. Tim Campion - September 3, 2011

107. X-ray

I actually believe Anna, Josiane and Shirley are using their true identities.

You are twisting yourself up like a pretzel with the contradictions. You wish to champion the truth, but hide behind a pseudonym. Are we to believe your words yet ignore your actions? (We would be gullible to do so.)

I truly appreciate your contributions here, but your x-rays usually seem to be black and white.

110. 2011 - September 3, 2011

#103-

Xray- do you care if you offend people here with your judgments of their comments? Would it be possible for you to communicate with others here by asking questions of them rather than making statements that sound so absolute? I believe you are trying to make a worthwhile contribution here, but sometimes you appear to be antagonistic.

111. X-ray - September 3, 2011

Tim,
You don´t need to believe anything I say and if what I say does not resonates with you, then so be it.
My pseudonym will vanish when burtons get to jail.
And Tim, truth and lies are black and white and if you think there are more collors to it, then I don´t know what else to tell you, really.
When people are unable to recognize the truth from lies and tell the good from evil, they only left with their confusion and screwed up worldview.

2011

You know, it is hard to answer to your post without getting angry and pissing off the moderator once again. But I think that if you pull your head out of your ass, you will ask less questions and see more answers.

112. Shirley - September 3, 2011

108 Ames

Right, I didn’t mean that just because a FF student is ardently doing RB’s bidding, rather than being the originator, that they are absolved of responsibility. At the same time, I feel (but don’t expect any one else to agree with me) that a person’s motivations are a factor, when trying to comprehend the bigger picture.

113. Tim Campion - September 4, 2011

111. X-ray

“truth and lies are black and white and if you think there are more collors to it, then I don´t know what else to tell you, really.”

***

X-ray, if you sincerely believe this, then there is nothing more you can tell me. Because that is your worldview. And I fully respect that.

Surely, you’ve observed however, not everyone shares your perspective. At the same time, we can come to an agreement on many things.

I’m one of those who happen to see colors, or shades of gray, and that is simply part of who I am, and what I have experienced.

It would be futile for me to try to impose my experience of “degrees” on you, because from your perspective degrees don’t exist, and such artifices only serve to obscure the truth.

If you don’t mind the questions, why is your anonymity directly influenced by Robert Burton’s being free? Does he have the ability to threaten you, your relatives, or close friends? What power does Robert Burton currently exert over your life?

114. X-ray - September 4, 2011

Tim,

Before you ask me a questing, I would like to address something first.
Here is what you´ve said in the same day:

´´For all we know Josiane and Shirley might be Jose and Charlie, and you might be Anatoli! In this digital world, things are not necessarily what they seem´´

´´I actually believe Anna, Josiane and Shirley are using their true identities´´

To me that sounds like two people talking. But that besides the point.
You have accused me of contradicting myself, referring to using a pseudonym. But let me ask you, how using a pseudonym can be seen as dishonesty? Did I promised to use my real name to anyone? Or did I said that my real name is x-ray? And if I would told you that my name is Jason, David or Alex, would that make more credible what I have to say? Your attempt to undermine my credibility is unsupported.
And what if I know more dirty shit about burton than you do and what if I was threaten in the past? What if I do have something to lose by starting a legal battle prematurely? And what tha fuck it has to do with what I have to say anyway?
I don´t receive an unemployment benefits you know, I actually work hard to make a living.
And yes, to me a truth is a truth and a lie is a lie and this is why my life is straight, my thinking is clear, and my family and friends are loyal.
So as far as I concerned, you can shove your accusation right up your ass with or without additional colors.

115. My2Bits - September 4, 2011

The very last time I saw Robert Burton was some months after I left his ‘school’.

I had finished a meal at a restaurant in Nevada City and was heading toward the exit when I noticed Robert and four or five of his ‘boys’, mostly Russians, sitting at a table between me and the door. I tensed up. He had spotted me. He leaned toward one of his companions, whispered a few words, pointed to me with a girlish gesture, and snickered. I put eyes forward, walked by his table and out the door, closing it with a moderately loud slam. I walked out into the daylight and felt relieved, free. I didn’t acknowledge him.

But this scene continued to play in my mind and still does on occasion. I try to imagine how this final encounter could have gone differently: Say something clever or profound? Warn the pretty boys about their false prophet? Spit on him? Shoot him?

I guess it’s about my ability, or rather inability, to express my feelings of bitterness and rage at Robert’s betrayal as a teacher and spiritual guide of one of his long-time, loyal students. Truly, he has betrayed all of his students in the most egregious way. But for me, it’s personal.

I’ve been trained to swallow negative emotions, and unfortunately, I still do a good job at it. However, as my range of feelings becomes more available to me and I begin to acknowledge them, my healing progresses. The insight that I gain also helps me to understand and appreciate the diversity of perspectives on this blog. I can relate to you all.

What a small man was Robert Burton in the end! A self-professed Man Number 8 — pointing and snickering, shunning and humiliating someone who gave so much. A conscious being? I don’t think so.

116. Shirley - September 4, 2011

115

“However, as my range of feelings becomes more available to me and I begin to acknowledge them, my healing progresses.”

Great sentence.

117. Tim Campion - September 4, 2011

114. X-ray

First of all, I apologize if I offended you. The comment about blog names was an attempt at a joke (and yes, I was trying to speak as two different people.)

If we were having these conversations face-to-face, they would take a different course, because we would have more cues about what is being understood and what is not being understood.

All I can say is, read your own words, and hear them as if someone else is saying them:

“I have nothing against you personally but I see in you things which are not obvious to you and you feeling hurt because you don´t see it yourself.

“Indeed it is an open forum and everyone can say here anything he wants but if you say that ´´black is white´´ and I know for a fact that this is not so, then I will tell you that. And if there are more people who are telling you the same, then you might want to listen.”

118. Mr. Burp - September 4, 2011

I’m the Spirit Of Burp,
I came back for the irresistible X-reich… but you can call me S.O.B.

93. X-ray

“Fof is only a part of my life and not the biggest one.”

Judging on how much time and energy you put in making sure you have some sort of reply would prove the contrary.

“I see in you things which are not obvious to you and you feeling hurt because you don´t see it yourself.”

How can she be hurt by something that she cannot see or know? Is the truth some sort of gas?

“Indeed it is an open forum and everyone can say here anything he wants but if you say that ´´black is white´´ and I know for a fact that this is not so, then I will tell you that.”

Shall I assume that this is your explanation about knowing the “truth”?

“You say you interested in the truth, but you denying that very thing you seeking.”

How can you say that? How can you deny what you are seeking? It is more apparent that you are alone in entertaining this knowledge of the “truth”. Besides having Superman’s piercing vision, are you by any chance also psychic?

“The truth is simply what it is, but you may not see it, or like it, because it doesn´t fit in your version of it. It´s like students who are carrying an idea about burton in their heads, worshiping and defending it, denying the truth about him which doesn’t fit their version of it.”

You are forgetting that you were one of those “shmucks” and you held the same truth in your hands. But now it seems that you have reached the ultimate higher truth.

“And this is the only reason why I call myself X-ray, because I see thru lies like X-ray sees thru cloths.”

Up, up and awaaaaaay….
And yet, with this statement you cannot see through your egotistic arrogance… and your own lies.

98. X-ray

“I don´t want to sounds like another gury here, I hate gurus and to be called as one, would be an insult to me,”

Well affirming to know the truth… sounds like one of those to me. No insult intended.

“There is no healing by denial. Truth is the best doctor. It hurts you first like a surgeon, but it lets you truly heal after that. To avoid the truth and to try to remain always positive, is not only wrong and misleading idea but also harmful to your mental and emotional health. It is the same self-deception we trying to heal from.”

Positive as well as negative, poteto potato. Let’s see how well you do facing this very same music of yours.

“My suggestion, instead trying to be always positive, be rather real, truthful and honest with yourself.”

Hey! That’s exactly how Gurus talk… they just utter stuff. Remember when your teacher RB used to say: “…These are not just nice words…!” Well they were in fact also idiotic to say the least. No offense.

“This artificial positivity is nothing but a self induced trance which only maintains fake reality.”

I agree. How about blind negativity, does it also fit the profile?

“I would think that to be perceptive would imply to be correct as well, otherwise is sounds somewhat contradictory.”

Thinking that being perceptive implies to be correct as well… that is somewhat contradictory. You can be observant and insightful of all kind of shit. Haven’t you learned anything at all when you did time in the cult?

103. X-ray

“Sorry Anna, but you have posted a stupid comment.”

Ahhhhh… the truth speaks for itself, doesn’t it?

“First of all I don´t know who is who here for fact, secondly, if I would know, I still would say what I say, and thirdly, if your pet would like to comment here too, I would treat him according to his posts rather than to who he is.”

Well, if her pet would comment here, despite its observations, I would have a ton of respect for that darling. After all, there are people with x-ray vision, why not a pet who can type its own ideas!

“…the only reason my last few posts were polite and respectful, was because I assumed that I was talking to woman, and out of respect I talked to them the way I talked and if that would be a man, then my choice of words would be very different (ask moderator, he knows).”

Yes, but didn’t you just say: “First of all I don´t know who is who here for fact, secondly, if I would know, I still would say what I say”? Talking about contradictory…

“And if you were previously mistreated here, I think it had to do whith what you posted, not with who you are.”

I’m sorry, but according to your “truth” standards stated above, you just lied.

107. X-ray

“There is only one truth, whether you see it or not.

… the guru said. But if one cannot see it… What difference does it make? Who cares? …It’s gas, isn’t it?

You remind me the fellowship saying ´´there is always a higher truth´´.

Didn’t you just say: “There is only one truth, whether you see it or not”? (Awkward.)

“Sometime I get a feeling that some of you here didn’t leave the fellowship and still dwell in its sick mentality.”

Ditto.

111. X-ray

“…truth and lies are black and white and if you think there are more collors to it, then I don´t know what else to tell you, really.
When people are unable to recognize the truth from lies and tell the good from evil, they only left with their confusion and screwed up worldview.”

Are we still talking about your “truth”, the one you can see with your super-vision?

“You know, it is hard to answer to your post without getting angry and pissing off the moderator once again. But I think that if you pull your head out of your ass…”

Now, where is Ronnie-Renald with his “law of attraction” or “law of reflection” when you need him…?

119. fofblogmoderator - September 4, 2011

X-ray and Burb- are you guys kidding me??

Cool out.

120. nigel - September 4, 2011

108. Ames Gilbert

I think being in a cult, of itself, and supporting it (not necessarily financially) would invoke psychopathic behaviour in participants. I thought, at one time, that Burton was what he said he was – an enlightened being, developing a ‘school’ as the nucleus of a new civilization, of which I wanted to be a part – but it has been obvious from the (I believe) true stories that have been told on this blog, and also starting from the time I heard about Burton’s sexually deviant behaviour that we had been and were participants in a ‘psychological nightmare’ – sociopathic heirarchy, mind-bending rules and exercises, struggling to come to terms with appreciating ‘cultural taste’ and the escalating ‘donations’ and special financial requests. I cannot think that there is any purpose in ‘dissecting’ the goings-on that have been and are part of a morally and ethically criminal group…..Nigel.

121. nigel - September 4, 2011

Dear fofblogmoderator

May I add my nickel’s worth about Mr Burp and X-ray…

Do we need these two mutually destructive bloggers on the site, when space may be given to MORE INTELLIGENT and MORE CONSTRUCTIVE bloggers’ words?????…..Nigel.

122. Wondering Who’s Watching - September 4, 2011

98. X-ray – September 3, 2011:
‘Truth is the best doctor. It hurts you first like a surgeon, but it lets you truly heal after that.’

‘The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off.’
Gloria Steinem
104/158. associated press

(Please excuse the Work language that I use below, should that not be your cup of tea these days. Also, please excuse the long length of post.)

Based on the view of these above quotes, and my experience, you would expect that to experience truth, and become free, you first have to get negative impressions (not necessarily negative emotions) about a particular subject or circumstance. (That is not the only way to experience truth.)

There is a fine line of distinction that separates what is a ‘negative emotion’ and what is ‘discrimination.’

Discrimination is a faculty of negative halves of centers and is based on negative impressions that come from one’s experiences – it does not have the same flavour or feeling that negative emotions have.

Example: The more mechanical response, to a photograph about one’s mechanicality, is to get mad with negative emotion(s). This buffers or blocks (deflects) the negative impression from reaching more deeply in one’s being. That deeper place leads to discrimination about the particular behaviour.

So, to heal, or regenerate, requires a different triad than that which prompts one to negative emotions. Meeting an impression with third force, neutral force, is a way to commence an octave that produces different results. This is more easily said than done. After all, it is said, ‘We are third force blind.’

‘You road I enter upon and look around!
I believe you are not all that is here;
I believe that much unseen is also here.
Here the profound lesson of reception,
neither preference or denial. . .’
Song of the Open Road
– Walt Whitman

So, to become free, first you have to feel hurt, accept that hurt deeply, and then discriminate about that sort of experience in the future. The experience can be about one’s self (internally) or an outer (external) experience.

This is one of the main reasons, if not the main reason, for the non-expression of negative emotions. Not so much for you to accept all sorts of crazy or novel experiences (like oral sex with Robert Burton or jumping off the roof head first) or abuse, but, rather, to feed the discriminating faculty in one.

This is a tool. And, like most tools, there are correct ways to use them and incorrect ways. A hammer can be used as a screwdriver, or a screwdriver can be used as a hammer, but they were not made for those other purposes.

Similarly, non-expression of negative emotions, as an exercise, is not for disarming people from critical thinking or to cause them to accept circumstances that could be immoral or against conscience in them.

In this regard, it is best to present truth in as pleasant a manner as possible, which would externally consider all that might receive it. Using storytelling, or parable (allegory, metaphor, myth, simile), as examples, are ways to slip truth past the buffers.

(On the other hand, sometimes, a 2×4 upside the head, figuratively speaking, is the only way to reach past some mechanicality.)

Here are some past posts on the subject:

Page 5/#5: Another Name Says:
March 29th, 2007 at 8:35 pm
‘For confused and other friends.

First thanks for this blog and all your contributions. Availability of information helps us to come to informed decisions

To confused .

The 5 obstacles to be present – imagination, identification, negative emotions, lying and inner considering, were very helpful years ago. Still lying gives me an uncomfortable feeling. Imagination I can be in imagination and be present, or more aware …something is watching. You can see your physical being in imagination. Robert thinks it is better to do something else…he answered this question years ago at a dinner, that we would like to be present and not in imagination. This is the saturnine approach. Venusians like to be in imagination and be aware….
Is one thing better then the other…? Good question to live.
Negative emotions are often an expression of something internal that needs attention, something is not right….Look behind it…what is there…
Identification…just watch when it happens….life and not being identified is not happening, just watch.
Inner considering is such a blockade for friendship, often fear is behind inner considering.

Michel de Montaigne approach: is very practical:
‘We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.”

* * * * * *

Page 27/#36.on December 6, 2007 at 8:32 am
Bares Reposting:
‘Concerning what help we can be to others: The correct triad, if you still use that idea, is for the person needing help to ask for it. Then it is best to act from a third force, if you still use that idea, place. Do not believe any false humility in the requester; proceed with caution.

Nevertheless, I humbly submit this for consideration:

…all mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated; God employs several translators; some pieces are translated
by age,
some by sickness,
some by war,
some by justice;
but God’s hand is in every translation,
and His hand shall bind up all our scattered leaves again for that library where every book shall lie open to one another…

No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s or of thine own were: any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.
– John Donne

Possibly relating to the petition, that same Donne passage also contains this:

Neither can we call this a begging of misery, or a borrowing of misery, as though we were not miserable enough of ourselves, but must fetch in more from the next house, in taking upon us the misery of our neighbours. Truly it were an excusable covetousness if we did, for affliction is a treasure, and scarce any man hath enough of it. No man hath affliction enough that is not matured and ripened by it, and made fit for God by that affliction. If a man carry treasure in bullion, or in a wedge of gold, and have none coined into current money, his treasure will not defray him as he travels. Tribulation is treasure in the nature of it, but it is not current money in the use of it, except we get nearer and nearer our home, heaven, by it.

Also, there is this old time favourite in the Fellowship:

We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.
– Michel de Montaigne

I don’t necessarily suggest you believe any of these words or meanings, but perhaps there [are] those that might like to ‘try to be the words,’ and see what happens.

Thanks for reading.

And, thanks to the Sheik for his steadfast efforts in maintaining our venue here.’

* * * * * *

Page88/#100. Wouldnt You Like To Know
January 6, 2010
Commenting on:
’88/76. apostate:

‘Tough love — an expression used when someone treats another person harshly or sternly with the intent to help them in the long run.’

‘We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.’
Michel de Montaigne

Not something that many people could live with, especially. . .
you know who.

* * * * * *

Page89/#116. WonderingWhosWatching – January 23, 2010
‘Regarding ‘Photography’ as practiced in the Fellowship of Friends, as stated previously:

‘88/76. apostate:

‘Tough love — an expression used when someone treats another person harshly or sternly with the intent to help them in the long run.’

‘We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.’
Michel de Montaigne

Not something that many people could live with, especially. . .
you know who.’

It is a major characteristic of Robert Earl Burton, and by extension The Fellowship of Friends (Pathway to Presence), to dish it out but not be able to eat their own words. In other words: inability to BE the words they speak (Do as I say; not as I do – is the motto.) or to ‘walk the talk.’ This has been repeated, and documented, behavior from over 4 decades. It is the true measure of BEING.

If they were fully transparent about, and forthrightly proud of, the ’sex cult’ aspects of their culture, as practiced by the leader and others, then why not advertise it on their websites, write books about how it enhances their evolution, invite others of the ilk to come join their ‘movement’ to a new consciousness – rather than persuading those with other interests to be ‘converted.’ Rather than seducing unwilling sex partners into clandestine trysts, as is Robert Earl Burton’s habit to do (example: the rape of R_ch_rd L__r_l in the night while he slept), just advertise within the Fellowship of Friends that willing volunteers are sought and get people to come forward of their own volition – even set quotas to be met. That is, be open and honest about what goes on and invite people to witness just how useful it is to the purpose of the church and the religion that IS The Fellowship of Friends? Make it a sacrament and then it could be protected by religious freedom!

‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.

Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works,
and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’

Matthew 5:14-16 KJV

‘And he [Jesus] said unto them,
Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick?

For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad.’

Mark 4:21-22. . .

* * * * * *

Surely, you remember this quotation by Michel de Montaigne:
‘We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.’
Michel de Montaigne

* * * * * *

So, in summary, a lack of openness, a lack of openness to criticism, a lack of openness to critical thinking or psychological thinking, a lack of openness to certain feelings (like conscience), can be a leading and true indicator of LEVEL OF BEING of a person, organization, country, or planet. And, the degree to which every person embraces this will determin the level of being of the planet.

123. X-ray - September 4, 2011

117 Tim,

´´If we were having these conversations face-to-face, they would take a different course´´

No, I don´t think they would.

121

Thanks for support, Nige.

..122 Wondering Who´s Watching

´´Based on the view of these above quotes, and my experience, you would expect that to experience truth, and become free, you first have to get negative impressions (not necessarily negative emotions) about a particular subject or circumstance. (That is not the only way to experience truth.)´´

No, you have to get a true impression. If you want to find out the truth about the rose, you just need to smell it and when you do, you know, that rose have a pleasant smell. But if you want to know the truth about burton, you just need to watch him for a while, and when you do, you know that everything he does or says is stinks like a skunks. So finding out the truth about the flower would be a pleasent and positive process. Finding truth about burton and his crooks will be an unpleasant and negative process.

Steve,
I am cool but I have a feeling that I may be loosing it in a minute.

118 mr. burp

Fucking idiot.

124. jomopinata - September 4, 2011

My2bits–

Carl M. and Whalerider both told stories in this space, I believe, of post-FOF meetups with Burton. Carl seemed to express that he was unable to feel angry (that’s how I remember it), and he and Burton just nodded at each other. I think Carl told that story in this space. Whalerider expressed what I understood as a state of emotional constraint when encountering Burton on the street in San Francisco, with his “entourage,” ignoring him. It might be worth digging up those stories, if only to compare the perceived paralysis among the three of you.

You remark on your ability, or inability, to express your bitterness and rage at Burton’s betrayal as a teacher and spiritual guide of one of his long-time, loyal students.

Let’s get one thing straight. Burton was never your “teacher and spiritual guide.” That was just a ruse which you bought. The fact that you thought he was your spiritual guide and teacher, and he said he was your Teacher (note capital letter) doesn’t mean that there was ever a relationship of teaching and learning and caring and guidance.

Rather, there was a parasitic relationship in which Burton obtained your money, labor and adulation by manipulating your idealism and your emotional needs. The “teacher and spiritual guide” stuff was something you projected onto him, as he and many others encouraged you to do. He wore the mantle and talked the talk, but he never walked the walk. Ever.

Burton is not to blame for not living up to your idealized projections. I suspect something in you knows this. I would think such knowledge would tend to drain any verbal protest of its blood.

But Burton IS to blame for shamelessly manipulating you into sacrificing thirty years of your adult life in service of his fantasies. Even a huge civil verdict could not adequately redress such an enormity. Short of an act of violence, no expression of this blame could ever be adequate to the task. And I suspect you understand this too.

So you walked past him, ignored him, and let the door slam. Sounds right to me. I can think of nothing more effective, since I can think of no effective act anyway.

In that moment in the restaurant, you saw him for what he is, a smirking, contemptuous devaluer of other human beings, wholly dependent upon others’ projections, making his life among them, all the while incapable of genuine relationship. That’s who he was in 1970, and that’s who he is today.

125. For the record - September 4, 2011

My2Bits 115.

“…I’ve been trained to swallow negative emotions, and unfortunately, I still do a good job at it. However, as my range of feelings becomes more available to me and I begin to acknowledge them, my healing progresses. The insight that I gain also helps me to understand and appreciate the diversity of perspectives on this blog. I can relate to you all.

“What a small man was Robert Burton in the end! A self-professed Man Number 8 — pointing and snickering, shunning and humiliating someone who gave so much. A conscious being? I don’t think so.”

I really like your post.

If it makes you feel any better, his reaction to you in that restaurant was a sign that it was really HE who was humiliated. Every time he sees someone who has escaped his psychological trap, it’s more evidence of his failure, and more evidence (especially for those sitting with him) that he is a fake. Seeing you “if life” happy and free is a bit like a former lover who had dumped you, seeing you accompanied by a more attractive and more intelligent and more fun-loving new partner — both of you smiling and cheerful and happy to be with each other. He had no choice but to lash out with childish snickering. He senses that you’ve shown him up. But even worse, he just couldn’t handle the fact that you had begun your life anew, happily and with confidence and with a beautiful present, and beautiful future ahead.

“A conscious being? I don’t think so.”

A wise man? A king of hearts? A teacher? No, no, and no.

126. For the record - September 4, 2011

FWIW, just want to point out that jomopinata’s comments and mine were posted simultaneously.

127. jomopinata - September 4, 2011

>since I can think of no effective act anyway

There is a saying, “shame is the underbelly of narcissism.” So, when I say, “I can think of no effective act anyway,” what I mean is that Burton is grotesquely defended against the experience of feeling shame.

All the manipulations to obtain adulation, all the grandiose architecture and potted palms and elaborate gardens, all the Rolls Royces and Mercedes Benzes and European paintings and statutes of Poseidon and David, the $1500 shirts, the “entourages” of sycophants and so forth, all together constitute the way Burton evades SHAME. The whole grandiose stage set of The Fellowship of Friends, Inc., is Burton’s shame-avoidance device. And his “beloved students” keep leaving, so he must devalue them; otherwise, he’d have to experience the shame associated with the rejection.

Ordinary people experience shame. If your friend betrays you, says he’ll give you a ride home, say, and then blows you off and doesn’t show up, and you tell him off, he’s liable to experience shame. But Burton is grotesquely defended against experiencing shame. That’s why he devalues people who might make him start to feel shame. Which is why “I can think of no effective act” anyway. If there’s a more shame-defended individual than Burton, I’ve never encountered him.

128. jomopinata - September 4, 2011

Ipse Dixit:

Motown Thoughts

Student: What do you think of your students?

Teacher: I love them and I mean it from the bottom of my heart.

Student: And your former students?

Teacher: Chain, chain, chain; chain of fools!

Fellowship Forum, Vol. 8, No. 4, April/May 1991

129. Arthur - September 4, 2011

Wondering Who’s Watching (122),

“Please excuse the Work language that I use below”…..

I enjoyed reading that “work language”. Maybe it’s because it’s the only language I’ve been exposed to. So, no excusing coming from me. And besides all that, when I actually walk the language it works for me.

And also, the triple use of the Michel de Montaigne quote reminds me of the law of three–completed message.

At least I ‘got’ it.

130. nigel - September 4, 2011

“DO YOU HEAR THE PEOPLE SING” from Les Miserables…..

ENJOLRAS
Do you hear the people sing?
Singing a song of angry men?
It is the music of a people
Who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start
When tomorrow comes!

COMBEFERRE
Will you join in our crusade?
Who will be strong and stand with me?
Beyond the barricade
Is there a world you long to see?
(Courfeyrac:)
Then join in the fight
That will give you the right to be free!

ALL
Do you hear the people sing?
Singing a song of angry men?
It is the music of a people
Who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start
When tomorrow comes!

FEUILLY
Will you give all you can give
So that our banner may advance
Some will fall and some will live
Will you stand up and take your chance?
The blood of the martyrs
Will water the meadows of France!

ALL
Do you hear the people sing?
Singing a song of angry men?
It is the music of a people
Who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start
When tomorrow comes!

(A rousing anthem that perhaps will see us ‘ex-ies’ go forward!) .n.

131. nigel - September 4, 2011

I think if the posters here all realized that WE ARE ALL SURVIVORS of the ‘terror’ called the Fellowship of Friends Cult, then we would have more chance of being mutually supportive and less chance of ‘useless bickering’ (you know who you are!)…..Nigel.

132. Shirley - September 4, 2011

123

xRay, I’m glad you try to pursue the truth in as direct a manner as you do. I’m also glad people on this blog challenge you on your statements, because you’re always up to backing up your stance. But when it comes to your reactions to Burp, can you try to walk around the block and cool off, because surely you realize that he’s provoking you to get a reaction out of you. At least, that’s my take on the situation.

133. X-ray - September 4, 2011

My2Bits,

I appreciate your impute. Your story few pages back was deeply touching.
Yes, we all have been trained to live in a fake positive environment caring in suppressed emotions (which not necessarily always were negative ) so much that even years later people still are freaking out and their fuses going off from just a little straigth talk.

It takes time to get deprogrammed and healing do come with self – expression.
Glad you make it thru.

Nige,

So what are you suggesting, to shut up when being attacked?
What do you know about this schmuck anyway?
Do you know if he was also a victim?
Did he tell you his story?
To me he sounds like a brainless jerk, nothng more. People who have suffered are sounds different. But even if he was a victim, what right that gives him to attack me first? I can asure you, he would never dare to do it face to face because before he would even start, he would be counting his teeth on the ground.

134. X-ray - September 4, 2011

132

Yes, Shirly, that is exaclty what he does, I wonder how Steve don´t see it.

135. Shirley - September 4, 2011

134

X-ray, one way to deal with it is, to see that if you are provoked to anger, that it is your problem to control it. I don’t mean, to repress or suppress it. But find a way to distance yourself from the comments that anger you so quickly. If he provokes you, that doesn’t mean you have to respond with a curse-out. You don’t even have to respond at all. I liked what Bruce said in 92 (but in a different context), “He has his stuff, you have your stuff, everyone has their stuff.”

In addition, it may not be the blog moderator’s job to determine what motivates you or Burp or me or anyone else to post a comment on the blog. It wouldn’t be fair to expect him to correctly assess a poster’s real intent. In all fairness to his role, perhaps he limits himself to how we express ourselves. If it becomes offensive, then no matter what your true intent was, then the poster has broken one of the rules of this blog.

136. nigel - September 4, 2011

133. X-ray

O.K. I will tell you what I think…..

I think he is another (mutated, otherwise) plant or ‘shill’ if you call it that (Mr Burp, I mean). You have a fragile grasp on your reality outside of the FOF experience (sorry if this sounds harsh, but you can take it, I am sure). I have found a rock-solid grasp on my own role (after 22 years, I grant you) and would certainly not ‘back down’ from relating how I know this is so. Be glad to hear from you, at your pace…..Nigel.

137. X-ray - September 5, 2011

135

Thank you Shirly, good advises, but not for me.

136

To complicated, Nige, don´t know what you mean.

Steve,
Do you endorse a provocation?

138. J. D. - September 5, 2011

118. Mr. Burp

Hilarious!

X-ray:

Well, it’s clear that when it comes to see something about yourself, statements like “The truth is simply what it is, but you may not see it, or like it, because it doesn´t fit in your version of it” or “I see in you things which are not obvious to you and you feeling hurt because you don´t see it yourself.” your legendary x-ray vision magically turns a blind eye.
Armed with the “truth” you launched your righteous crusade against contradictions and lies and you cannot see your own?
Now you have the nerve to play the victim, because you are crying about being “attacked”? Unbelievable!
You rant against everybody, and nobody can call you on it?
I don’t think so.
Congrats! You proved yourself to be an hypocrite, you know, the kind that you despise so much.
And yes! You said it right: “I wonder how (papa) Steve don´t see it”
Grow up!

139. X-ray - September 5, 2011

138 J D

Another schmuck, as far as I can see.

140. We Were There - September 5, 2011

Meanwhile, another summer comes and goes and your name is still on the Fellowship roll, still supporting the insupportable with your membership.

‘But don’t wait too long, because the opportunity that is here today may not be here tomorrow…’

141. X-ray - September 5, 2011

Ok, I had enough. Last post.

This morning I had a thought to end my contribution here but after reading my2bits, I decided to stay.
But now, after J.D´s post I felt like I had truly enough.

J. D. let me refresh your memory in case you just have pulled your head out of your ass to make a comment.
All started when I ´´photographed´´ (sorry for the word, just for the sake of it) Josiane for her obvious to monkey tendency protecting lunatics of FOF which was also seen by number of people, including Ames, who pointed that same thing out to her a while back, when she was protecting some current students.
For saying that, I have received so much garbage from some people, that I seriously doubt my belonging here.
Well, if you people are so brain damaged that you can´t tell the left from right and up from down, then it is your fucking problem to deal with. Not mine.
Then, another dickhead had popped in, a mr. burp, who´s father should be using condom the night he made him, who has being obviously provoking me for rudeness. Instead of using simple justice, the moderator bans us both, putting me on the same level as him, saying how much we pissed him off and calling my self-defence a ´´childish activity´´.
Now, your pathetic post J.D, where you speak of me being hypocrite. Well, I could have a long conversation with you about that, but that would be the same as talking to the wall.
And list goes on, but anyway, I´ve done enough exposing burton´s fraud and I feel good about it.

Bruce and Ames, you were an inspiration over last four years. Thank you.
James Mclemor (sorry If I spelled that wrong) also thank you.
Magoo, my respect to you. Keep walking straight, don´t let no scumbag cheat you, lie to you or seed self-doubts in you.
Shirley, for the record, my2biths, and others – wish my best to you.

The rest who shares the burp´s and J.D view – FUCK YOU!

142. My2Bits - September 5, 2011

Re: my post 115

Thanks, Jomopinata (124, 125), For the Record (125), and X-ray (133) for your insightful and supportive posts.

Jomo, I think you hit the nail on the head with your comment about projection.

Yes, I projected onto Robert Burton my ideas about, and desire for, a “teacher and spiritual guide”. In the long process of leaving, this projection gradually weakened and faded until at last I could see that ‘the emperor has no clothes’.

To the extent that this projection still exists, it seems reasonable to direct feelings of bitterness or rage onto RB. But this is a nowhere game, and I know it. The end of this projection is the freedom I seek. It should be as easy as ‘1, 2, 3!’, but it’s not. Force of habit, I guess.

Now, about four years out, I’m still feeling the effects of the ‘quantum entanglement’ of my life (being) in the dubious play of the Fellowship of Friends. I’m not free yet, but the collapse of the projection has propelled me toward a place that’s similar to Nisargadatta’s idea of the ‘inner guru’.

The many implications of the idea of projection make my head spin. More thoughts from posters on this topic would be helpful to me and, I’m sure, to others as well.

143. nigel - September 5, 2011

A quote from “A Beautiful Mind”, starring Russell Crowe, as a schizophrenic mathematician…..

Nash: Thank you. I’ve always believed in numbers and the equations and logics that lead to reason.

But after a lifetime of such pursuits, I ask,

“What truly is logic?”

“Who decides reason?”

My quest has taken me through the physical, the metaphysical, the delusional — and back.

And I have made the most important discovery of my career, the most important discovery of my life: It is only in the mysterious equations of love that any logic or reasons can be found.

I’m only here tonight because of you [wife, Alicia].

You are the reason I am.

You are all my reasons.

Thank you.

144. nigel - September 5, 2011

Walt Whitman, from “I Sing the Body Electric”…..

I SING the Body electric;
The armies of those I love engirth me, and I engirth them;
They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them,
And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the Soul.

Was it doubted that those who corrupt their own bodies conceal themselves;
And if those who defile the living are as bad as they who defile the dead?
And if the body does not do as much as the Soul?
And if the body were not the Soul, what is the Soul?

145. nigel - September 5, 2011

from…..”Freedom of the Mind” site by Steven Hassan

(on the Fellowship of Friends)…..

Behaviors:

1. All of these aspects are strictly regulated. Members are strongly discouraged from associating with those outside the group, and even with family members. Though this changes over time, rules about clothes and personal appearance abound. There are rules regarding how members eat, and on occasion, what they eat and drink. (For example, for a time soft drinks and bacon were forbidden.) The leader at one time suggested sleeping no more than 6 hours per night, and there was strong peer pressure to conform. As a result, some members’ health was damaged (mine included). The financial commitment was large at first, and increased until it was enormous. 10% of your income was the base payment, plus a constant series of “special donations” (required) and “special requests” (not required, but strongly “encouraged”). Members who chose to live and work on the Fellowship property were paid less than minimum wage, to my knowledge, while being asked to work excessively long hours. Those not living on the property were “encouraged” to spend their vacations there, generally spending their time participating in the manual labor.

2. At the time of my membership, students were encouraged to live in group houses called “teaching houses.” Those who didn’t were tangibly judged as being “less serious about work on themselves.” This seems to be less the case these days, however, as the general population of students has aged. There were generally two 2-hour meetings per week, along with special activities and dinners, but again, students were strongly pressured to spend any leisure time in the company of other students, and to avoid unnecessary contact with outside people.

3. This definitely happened, but in reality, there was a rule or “suggestion” for virtually every aspect of a student’s existence, so there was generally little question as to what “the Teacher wished one to do.” I do know that at one point he issued a proclamation that anyone in a relationship should either get married or terminate the relationship. Most people took this seriously and did as they were told.

4. I suppose there was some inclination to “confess” one’s “failures in the work.” More likely, though, was the tendency to “tattle” on others who had broken rules. There was and is a strict no-smoking rule, with large fines for offenders; students took to sniffing one another for signs of offense, and would turn in suspected smokers.

5. Punishments for breaking rules included fines and even expulsion from the group. Failing to keep monthly dues current barred one from attending meetings and other group events. Rewards were more subtle — acceptance and praise for successfully being able to act the part of the “good student.”

6. Individualism was all but banned outright. Students were told what music, art, clothing, etc. they should like. Non-compliance resulted in being shunned as someone with a “negative attitude” toward the teaching. To enjoy music etc. that was not sanctioned by the “Teacher” was seen as a personal defect and weakness to be ashamed of. There is also a very insular language peculiar to the group, where catch-phrases quickly take the place of real thought.

7. See above.

8. Questioning the teacher’s insights, commands, requests etc. was strictly forbidden, though the means for enforcing this were more covert and had to do with engendering shame, fear and guilt.

146. Kid Shelleen - September 5, 2011

My2bits @115:

This reminds me of what I consider my last true 4th way aim:

If I ever encounter Robert Burton in a restaurant where I’m dining, I will, very intentionally, walk over to him and pour a glass of water over his head.

147. Ames Gilbert - September 5, 2011

Many pages back, the conversation turned to ‘flipping’, and, if I remember correctly, quite a few bloggers remembered this happening to them. I refer to a sudden change from one world view to another, so sudden as to be startling, disconcerting, or even shattering, and certainly memorable. It occurs to me, as I ponder Abraham Goldman’s suicide, that this might explain his action. This, of course is pure speculation. I’m trying to put my self in his shoes and find an explanation from my own range of experiences, and this is the closest match.

While I was a follower in the Fellowship of Friends, I ‘flipped’ three times. Each time, it was as if I had woken up from some kind of a dream, and I was seeing things as they actually were; that I was in a thrall, that Burton was some kind of evil spider at the center of a ghastly web, that almost every ‘verification’ I had about the Fourth Way was in fact a case of magical thinking. I felt I was split, I could still observe the old patterns and attitudes, almost as if it were another person, and simultaneously there was this whole new perspective, strange and clear and just as real, in fact more so. Like any good student would, I put all my energy into suppressing these mental aberrations, and after a couple of days, I ‘flipped’ back again, and set about repairing the damage. The first time (five years into my followship), this included a lot of apologizing to my wife. I had stormed out of the house, vowing to leave the Fellowship and her both, and badly frightening her; from her perspective, I had gone mad, both esoterically and psychologically, I was throwing literally everything of value away. The next time, five years later, was similar, except I stayed calmer, and didn’t share these thoughts with my wife until afterwards. The final time, of course, the ‘flip’ was permanent, and resulted in me leaving.

So, I can imagine Abraham ‘flipping’, and if he did, it might have been an unbearable experience, if mine were anything to go by. This complete and alternative view of reality would have included how things actually were in his life, what the Fellowship of Friends and Burton actually is, and his important part in maintaining both. I don’t know if one might necessarily call it “an attack of conscience” or an episode of remorse, it wasn’t recognizable as such for me, it was just a clear knowing of the situation, another window looking out on the same reality. But maybe for others it does include remorse, and if it were so for Abraham, then this would have been a complete version of hell.

As I said, pure speculation.

One irony is, my wife had her own ‘flips’, and there I was, giving her what I thought was loving support and helping her back to the “correct way of thinking”, as she did for me . . .

148. Renald - September 5, 2011

re 142 My 2bits “The many implications of the idea of projection make my head spin. More thoughts from posters on this topic would be helpful to me and, I’m sure, to others as well.“

Often when looking at the idea of projection it is assumed that the projection is something from the past. It often also is assumed that projection is a mistake, Well my belief is that projection is on-going.
It is one of the main tools in the act of creation. So from that point of view the only mistake is sticking with projections that do not serve in the present. The times, they are changing. Sticking with projections only because of their addictive qualities equals illness of one type or another. So the answer is, it is up to us to determine what we want to project, `want` being the important word.

You “ inner guru“ is in you and is providing all the answers to all your questions and much more. Your post indicates that you are open to receive those answers. They will come as inspirations.
For example, I thought that I would not respond to anything on the blog and was well on my way to not read any of it for a long while.
But I felt inspired to read it today. My first reponse was “ Am I nuts?
I relaxed and checked it out and found your request. I then knew I had to offer what I could. Congratulations, you have it made in the shade. When I wake up in the morning and sometimes during the night is when I receive most inspiration. Some take up meditation for the same purpose, to clean the whiteboard whereon the new info can be seen or heard.

“ would be helpful to me and, I’m sure, to others as well“-This says a lot and it speaks of love and you just cannot go wrong with that emotion whether you are aware of it or not. It is one truth you can gain from by staring at it continuously. Then, what you gain we all gain, if we are at all interested in gaining.

149. sallymcnally - September 5, 2011

#147: Ames, good post, very heartfelt.

150. jomopinata - September 5, 2011

146/Kid Shelleen

Well, ok, but remember: It’s not for him, it’s for you. If reports are to believe, this is a guy who pays people to rough him up and defecate on him, so what’s a little ice water over the head?

151. nigel - September 5, 2011

147. Ames Gilbert

I agree with your eloquent term – ‘flipping’ – and that it may have been instrumental in Abraham Goldman’s suicide. It certainly was the case with my suicide attempt – I saw myself succeeding creatively, with pictures on my workshop wall of past exemplary commissions and being involved with jewellery stores running exhibitions of my work; and then, on the other hand, failing financially and with school rules and exercises with the FOF. I COULD NOT RECONCILE THE TWO. In the end it felt like my ‘public profile’ was ‘defiling my esoteric work’. I wanted to be happy with my work, but could not. The ‘out-of-the-school’ deadline loomed, as far as donations were concerned and, the week before the suicide attempt, I went into ‘rapid cycling bipolar’ – another term for ‘flipping’ (switching from positive to negative about events and situations one is in). I really do not think it is possible to be ‘in one’s right mind’ (compos mentis) and prepare for ending one’s life. Events force one to act psychotically (not sure about the Japanese ‘hari-kiri’?????) and the best thing that can happen to you is that you are removed from the situation to an asylum (Latin for ‘place of safety’). The rapidly burning fuse needs to be extinguished. The ‘patient’ must have enough common sense at the right time to reach out for help. I hope this ‘sheds light’ on the subject…..Nigel.

152. nigel - September 5, 2011

…..from Shakespeare’s “Ode to Robert Earl Burton” in ‘Measure for Measure…..

“But man, proud man,
Drest in a little brief authority,
Most ignorant of what he ’s most assured,
His glassy essence, like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven
As make the angels weep.”

153. nigel - September 5, 2011

Frondes Agrestes 1.2 by John Ruskin, the Evangelist

“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.”

154. nigel - September 5, 2011

FRONDES AGRESTES
By John Ruskin, the Evangelist

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.

155. nigel - September 5, 2011

FRONDES AGRESTES by John 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.

156. waskathleenw - September 5, 2011

147/Ames

Good point, Ames. Greg and I left after I experienced what I described as a “pop.” It was like being inside a bubble, and something came along and stuck a pin in it. Suddenly the bubble was gone, and we were out within a week. It was, literally, a total flip in perspective that happened in a few seconds. It felt sudden, but it followed a long period of growing disillusionment.

Fortunately, Greg had already arrived there more gradually. It would have been so much harder to negotiate if he had been firmly entrenched.

157. Ames Gilbert - September 5, 2011

I’ve received several e-mails over the weekend from folks thanking me for alerting them about the ‘Power of Now’ group led by present members of the Fellowship of Friends/Pathway to Presence/Living Presence/Being Present.org / Church of Robert Earl Burton organization.
I’m passing this on and sharing the thanks because this is a group effort. JD first alerted us, Tim reminded us, between us we ferreted out more details, and we did the little something that was within our power about it. The effort was appreciated (not necessarily by just those who responded), and probably some heartbreak was avoided.
So, cheers!

Thanks to you all for your contributions on these many pages, and thanks again to the moderator for doing his best to keep the channels open and the flow continuing.

158. Arthur - September 5, 2011

Renald (148),

How does one invoke the “inner guru”? What keeps the ‘inner guru’ silent? Anxiety?

Is this what fundmentalist Christians mean when they say they received a “word of knowledge”? In answer to their prayer or someone’s elses?

Rodney Collin said that, “all sincere prayers must be answered”.

Some use visualization, is this similiar?

Or, in computer ways, an answer is ‘stumbled upon’? By one link leading to another? Guided by the ‘inner guru’? The inward connecting of dots.

159. Shirley - September 5, 2011

150 jomopinata

For real?

151 Nigel

What little I know of hara-kiri is that disgrace seems to be the motive, not something psychotic. There is a concept in cultural anthropology that some societies are shame societies, and others are guilt societies. (They are not mutually exclusive). Asian cultures tend to be shame societies. The west has become more aware of hara-kiri because of Samurai movies, the opera Madame Butterfly, and general exposure to eastern culture and philosophy. I think that form of bowel-cutting is, however, particular to the Japanese.

160. Cathie - September 5, 2011

#78 Kid Shelleen: “Oh, and “I’m A Believer”; best song Neil Diamond ever wrote.”

Nope. “Solitary Man.”

161. For the record - September 5, 2011

thanks x-ray.

“Re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul…”

“Resist much. Obey little.”

-Walt Whitman

162. jomopinata - September 6, 2011

159/Shirley

Word is. Published on this blog by someone claiming firsthand knowledge. Not me, tho.

163. Shirley - September 6, 2011

Jomopinata – I thought Hitler was weird, that way. If it’s true, then we’re not talking about decadence, but being degenerate….IMHO.

164. Wouldnt You Like To Know - September 6, 2011

147. Ames Gilbert – September 5, 2011:
‘Many pages back, the conversation turned to ‘flipping’ . . .’

Ames, and others, on this subject, thank you; good topic.

One way to look at this ‘flipping’ of awareness is that the bubble is called cognitive dissonance.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_dissonance

In one condition, of being IN the cognitive dissonance bubble, every effort is made to diminish the ‘discomfort caused by holding conflicting ideas simultaneously,’ by denial and all and any other means. That is inside looking out. Akin to being inside FoF looking out.

The flipped condition, of being OUTside the cognitive dissonance bubble looking in at the cognitive dissonance game, reveals the absurdity of one’s situation – finding it intolerable and necessitating action(s) that reunifies one’s consciousness – and thus, obliterates the cognitive dissonance bubble. Poof!, gone, it was only a creation of our own minds.

Oh, wad some power the giftie gie us
To see oursel’s as others see us!
It wad frae monie a blunder free us,
And foolish notion.

Robert Burns
Poet of Scotland
1759-1796

In modern English:

O, what a gift that God would give us
To see ourselves as others see us!
It would from many a blunder free us,
And foolish thoughts.

165. Opus 111 - September 6, 2011

Rumor has it that there may be another member who recently attempted to end his life… It would be someone long-employed employed in house keeping at the Galleria. If he is whom I think, he is a rather meek individual who largely keeps to himself, never displayed in REB entourage.

House keeping at the galleria! The amount of emotional garbage alone would be enough to drive anybody insane.

The rumor goes on to say that the individual in question took an overdose of medications but was unsuccessful at ending his days. Result: he is somewhere under wraps, in a chemical strait jacket. Nobody ever said REB was not good at putting people to sleep.

166. WhaleRider - September 6, 2011

Nigel:
Sorry for the delay in responding to your question about the amygdala, my DSL was down for a few days.

The amygdala (as opposed to the hippocampus) is the structure of the brain that houses intense emotional memories usually associated with fear or trauma, but it could be any event of emotional intensity like winning or losing a lot of money…or meeting a famous person.

The amygdala not only allows us to remember the details of the intense event, like time, place, or weather conditions, but more importantly from an evolutionary/survival standpoint, it allows us to re-experience the intense emotion associated with the event, either during recall of the event or when in a similar circumstance.

When we were instructed to “remember ourselves” in the high intensity/high control cult, it was usually in a field of emotional intensity, excitation and hyper-vigilance with a backdrop of fear…fear of Armageddon, fear of breaking a rule and being kicked out, fear of “not getting it”, or excitation stimulated by meeting a person with celebrity status.

So, IMO, that’s what we were remembering, not ourselves, but only a part of ourselves through a primal lens in the brain that engenders three basic responses to the intensity of “being present”, fight, flight or freeze. There is no room for critical thought.

Since fight and flight are systematically removed through cult indoctrination, the result is not “evolution”, but followers frozen in time, like deer in the headlights…a state of mind burton euphemistically calls, immortal.

My2bits:
Thanks for keeping it real. You took the right action, IMO, by passing burton by as I did on the street. You got to keep your cool…and your humanity.

The keyboard is mightier than the sword.

Great work Ames.

167. Red Hat - September 6, 2011

165. Opus 111

In the last month? How recent?

168. Red Hat - September 6, 2011

I’m not asking out of lurid fascination. I knew someone there in such a position who was getting the “maximum dosage” – I was concerned he was going to pop.

169. My2Bits - September 6, 2011

Thanks, Renald.

Great post about the amygdala, Whalerider. It gave me a new perspective on things.

170. Magoo - September 6, 2011

Back to the MEETUPS and some Demographics.
Few years ago I had a conversation with PM, who probably has the largest and most elegant Villa on top of Regent Way and who also flies a plane often above Oregon House skies.
He told me that he and few other students are starting an initiative to Open The Apollo gates to other Gurus and Spiritual teachers in order to attract more people from the Bay Area to Oregon House. This initiative was discussed and cooked for awhile and I think then it was vetoed NO by REB.
It could well be that the so called Meetups are an off shoot from that attempt.
Another idea is that the Demographics around Apollo are changing. To my knowledge the last house that was built on Regent way was around 3 or 4 years ago. Few houses were sold to ‘Life People’, that have no connection at all to the FOF. Some of the home owners are aging with no Fresh Blood money to take over. Then there are foreclosures etc.
There are also the Ex-Students houses (30 – 40) that some will be for sale as soon as the real estate market will change, some are committed to stay.
Ciao tutti

171. My2Bits - September 6, 2011

Re: 164 – Wouldn’t You Like to Know

Thanks for deftly combining Ames’s thoughts on “flipping” with the concept of cognitive dissonance, which I’ve been trying to get a handle on for some time now. It makes perfect sense to me.

Perhaps the “process of leaving” I’ve tried to describe is like a gradual change in the surface tension of the dissonance bubble which, at a certain point goes ‘pop’! You’re outside looking in!

172. Opus 111 - September 6, 2011

Red hat:

I do not know the dates but the rumor is quite recent…

173. Tim Campion - September 6, 2011

I for one will miss X-ray’s voice, shocking as it sometimes was. He carries an important message.

I also want to express appreciation to all who are here, seen and unseen.

My sincere thanks.

***

On another matter, does anyone know if/how the Fellowship officially uses Facebook, Twitter or other social media to “reach out” to prospects?

174. Ill Never Tell - September 6, 2011

166. WhaleRider – September 6, 2011:
‘Since fight and flight are systematically removed through cult indoctrination, the result is not “evolution”, but followers frozen in time, like deer in the headlights…a state of mind burton euphemistically calls, immortal.’

Many are cold, but a few are frozen.

Associating self-remembering with a hypervigilant condition is like trying to teach people how to self-remember using machine guns. Wrong special structures in the brain are utilized; amygdala vs. pineal – right neighboorhood, but wrong house – kind of like cops trying to bust illegal marijuana users without knowing the exact address – raid a few people in the neighboorhood and get almost the same effect. Wrong triad.

* * * * * *

150. jomopinata – September 5, 2011:
‘146/Kid Shelleen
Well, ok, but remember: It’s not for him, it’s for you. If reports are to believe, this is a guy who pays people to rough him up and defecate on him, so what’s a little ice water over the head?’

159. Shirley – September 5, 2011:
‘150 jomopinata
For real?’

162. jomopinata – September 6, 2011:
‘159/Shirley
Word is. Published on this blog by someone claiming firsthand knowledge. Not me, tho.’

163. Shirley – September 6, 2011:
‘Jomopinata – I thought Hitler was weird, that way. If it’s true, then we’re not talking about decadence, but being degenerate….IMHO.’

165. Opus 111 – September 6, 2011:
‘Rumor has it that there may be another member who recently attempted to end his life… It would be someone long-employed employed in house keeping at the Galleria. If he is whom I think, he is a rather meek individual who largely keeps to himself, never displayed in REB entourage.

House keeping at the galleria! The amount of emotional garbage alone would be enough to drive anybody insane.’

Yes, besides ‘someone claiming firsthand knowledge’ of the activities (the badroom/bedroom activities) by participating in them, there is the housekeeping people, who clean up after the fact and/or do the laundry.

One R.C., a stalwart and respectable vineyard worker type (a.k.a.: viticulturist or oenologist), was married to T., a Blake Cottage housekeeper. Before the Academy/Galleria, Robert Earl Burton’s residence was a mobile home (on the same spot) called the Blake Cottage. That was much more close quarters than recent situation. T. was privy to the events by the long shadow they cast, and could confess it to people. (Even with a no gossip exercise, how can you get women from talking about such stuff?) R. & T. left FoF, presumably in disgust. This would have been in the mid 1970’s to mid 1980’s, roughly. (Mostly during time Robert Earl Burton claimed to be celebate.) There are many others that did this ‘duty.’ Some, I guess, fancied themselves in humble service to the insane asylum, like ‘Nurse Ratched’ from One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, or whatever – or, maybe, a Mother Teresa feature. Tim Campion would know who I refer to here.

Opus 111: Could that be *d*lb*rt? Certainly not Gr*yl*n?

175. nigel - September 6, 2011

…from Wikipedia….

“Cognitive dissonance is a discomfort caused by holding conflicting 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. The phrase was coined by Leon Festinger in his 1956 book When Prophecy Fails, which chronicled the followers of a UFO cult as reality clashed with their fervent beliefs. It is one of the most influential and extensively studied theories in social psychology. A closely related term, cognitive disequilibrium, was coined by Jean Piaget to refer to the experience of a discrepancy between something new and something already known or believed.

Experience can clash with expectations, as, for example, with buyer’s remorse following the purchase of an expensive item. In a state of dissonance, people may feel surprise, dread, guilt, anger, or embarrassment. People are biased to think of their choices as correct, despite any contrary evidence. This bias gives dissonance theory its predictive power, shedding light on otherwise puzzling irrational and destructive behavior.”

176. nigel - September 6, 2011

Mind Control:

Tapping into the normal responses of the human psyche for purposes of controlling others

By Mauri

“In order to begin to dissect brainwashing techniques one must first understand normal behavior. How does the human computer, known as the brain, operate? What does it mean to be normal? For one thing it means that one functions. To function is to successfully work toward, then reach a pre-determined goal. Goals include everything we need or want; and they can be reached in a moment or a lifetime. When our days are filled with a healthy rhythm of activities, our hearts are filled with joy. But, sometimes life is not so simple, sometimes we stumble, or life gives us a shove, or an obstacle blocks our path. When we are prevented from reaching the goal, we dysfunction and the kaleidoscope of dysfunctional behavior can come into play as we struggle for a solution.

When one is unable to function by reaching the goal, for whatever reason, one feels fear. Perhaps not reaching the goal is life threatening. To feel fear or anxiety is to be given a large shot of mental energy. This sudden increase in energy is supplied to solve the problem. It is in the state of anxiety or “dysfunction”, which is high-energy, that all psychological problems are solved and all psychological changes are made. However, if one remains in this mental state for prolonged periods of time, not only does it feel bad, but the high stress of anxiety may lead to exhaustion and burnout. If one must handle the problem, by any means available, to escape the high stress, one has a number of options.

First, if one is able, one may solve the problem and return to a “function” mode. Second, one may accept one’s fate and become depressed where reduced activity (rest) occurs. Anxiety – depression cycles may occur where one tries to solve the problem in the anxiety mode of dysfunction then rest in the depression mode, only to repeat the cycle. Third, one may become angry where one addresses the problem with aggressive behavior. Fourth, one may deny the existence of a problem and continue to function with an altered reality, known as “denial”.

Denial is any alteration of reality that allows “function” to again take place. Lest the survival value of not facing life exactly as it is eludes you, it must be observed that we never face life exactly as it is. Reality is always little more that a picture painted by our brain and sent to our conscious where it is further colored and often distorted by emotions. So it follows that there must be times when further distortions may actually increase our chances of survival by allowing us to function. Often denying the problem and continuing to live in a reasonably normal manner has greater survival value than wasting huge amounts of energy on trying to solve the problem. After all, one must function first and foremost, if one is to make it in a precarious world. The main survival value of any denial is that it may enable one to function under otherwise incapacitating circumstances.

If “denial” is an alteration of truth, what is true? Only God is in a position to know what is actually true; so for us, truth can be little more than what we believe it to be. Each person has his own systems of “belief” that make up his own personal truth. As we learn or are given more information, that truth changes. These “beliefs” form as semi-permanent instructions to be used in processing information as it comes to the brain through our senses and in decision-making.

Memories, which can be very complex and often change with the passage of time, are separate from our systems of “belief” and are not necessarily used in decision-making.

“Belief” systems change only with personal effort. Our “beliefs” must be stable over time or our world would become chaotic. But they must also have flexibility or we would be unable to learn. If a “belief” is a tool to be used in decision-making, it must follow certain criteria:

It must provide simple, stop or go, on or off instructions.

The “belief” must be significant or useful.

Great motivation is required to create or destroy these “beliefs”. The time and energy required to form a new “belief is demonstrated by observing the time and energy required to create or destroy a phobia (which is based on a belief). By common observation it takes a week or so for phobias to become set (the reason one gets right back on the horse.) These concepts of normal behavior – function, dysfunction, denial and belief – are at the heart of all brainwashing techniques.

If we function using our God given free will, why then would anyone submit to the process of mind control when its sole function is to rob us of our free will? I feel the answer is that we are all vulnerable. The reason lies in the subtle ways that souls are lost.

People who are functioning do not feel great fears and are not susceptible to the mind control of cults. Therefore if the cult is to grow and prosper, it must either find potential members who are at a point in their life where they are dysfunctional; or the cult must go one step farther and put the prospective member into a dysfunctional state of mind. The high mental energy of fear provides the mental energy necessary for the alterations of thought required for effective mind control. It really doesn’t matter what produced that fear be it poverty, trauma, major life changes, or be it sleep deprivation, anxiety producing ideas, exhaustion or isolation. Fear or dysfunction is the first important step to entrapment. The next step to entrapment is to remove the person from his fear (pain) by providing him with a denial that restores his feelings of power enabling him to function. The first form of power comes through the group association. People feel more secure with human contact and there is strength in numbers. The group fellowship achieved, the process moves on to the second form of power, idol worship. The object worshipped can be almost anything. The idol most often worshipped by religious cults is the Messiah. And the perceived feeling of power is by having a close association with or even controlling God. The idol worshipped by satanic cults is Magick. The perceived feeling of power is by contact with and manipulation of the spirit world. The idol worshipped by many a criminal or political cult is simply their leader or masters. Often the perceived feeling of power is gained by intimidation of those outside the group.

Once the prospective member has entered the inner sanctum of the cult he is held captive by its dedication to systematically continue to remove his free will (separate the ego from the soul). The techniques for doing this include the following:

The continued creation of fear.

The removal of love for oneself.

The removal of trust in one’s own decisions.

Phobic programming.

The creation of fear by cults is its most distinguishing characteristic. Religious cults may use such tactics as the fear of Satan and the outside world, reinforcing that fear by the use of isolation. Satanic cults create near constant fear by their many rituals of violence; and like the criminal cults, they resemble, open threats of violence are also frequently employed.

Some things in our lives are so, just because they are. One of those things regards sex. In human beings non-consensual sex is fear producing. And as any rape victim knows, that fear can be enormous. That is why sex is so consistently used as a technique for mind control, because of its power to produce FEAR! All sex between adults and children is non-consensual. Most sex between two people where there is a large disparity of power is non-consensual. Cult group sex is non-consensual; participation is required. Ritual sex is non-consensual; no choice is given.

Free will is synonymous with the idea that the individual is important. In order to rob someone of his free will he must also be robed of his self-esteem. His “belief” that he has value must be changed. Religious cults may accomplish great feelings of shame and a lack of worthiness by the simple constant repetition of those ideas. Satanic cults, once they get the potential follower’s initial cooperation by the use of a lie, require participation in violent, sexual and noxious rituals that very effectively degrade the person’s feelings of self worth. Criminal groups degrade themselves by participation in violent or antisocial acts.

A common satanic ritual is to cover one in feces. Once you’ve expelled it, feces become something to be carefully avoided; and especially someone else’s feces as it may spread disease. If you are covered in feces as a part of a ritual ceremony, you become something to be avoided, even to yourself. Such an act very effectively destroys self-esteem. Even more humiliating is the performance of the act in front of an audience, whose self esteem is also degraded. Likewise is the eating of menstrual blood or the drinking of urine. You are of no use to the cult if you love yourself. Robbing you of that love is its first task.

If you chant, “aumgn, aumgn,” during the ritual it will distract you from the critical thought, “I may get hepatitis from drinking this urine.” By drinking the urine you are ignoring your natural desire (free will) not to do it because it is noxious. If you dissociate from the act, you start the process of personality splitting. Most importantly, because you are thrown into a state of dysfunction, you open your mind to denial. This may result in changes in reality that may be introduced along with the urine in the ritual. As you are gagging while drinking the urine you are told of the importance of silence about the cult. The idea of silence becomes attached to the high-energy event and will automatically be obeyed. Like any phobia, deviation from the rule will create extreme and unreasonable fear. If these rituals are done with enough intensity and duration eventually the practitioners of Magick become brainwashed (terrorized) into blind obedience to their coven or cult. The group denial becomes “only the group is of value”. The altered reality of denial is always perceived as real and absolutely unbending. That is why brainwashing is so effective. Its victims become true believers. The tools of denial include turning the old reality to its opposite (for example fear becomes love), re-coloring events and erasing time.

Free will requires the confidence that the decisions a person makes will lead to functioning and happiness. If a person is to practice only group thought he must be made to believe that his own thoughts will lead him astray. Religious cults threaten punishment or expulsion for independent thought and criminal groups threaten violence. Satanic cults cut deep into the psyche by the use of the forced ritual. These ceremonies include in their fabric very effective techniques for removing free will. They may begin by teaching the person not to trust his own natural instincts by having him repeatedly do repulsive acts. Later he can be gotten to commit crimes because he no longer trusts his own emotions not to. As the fight for his soul (free will) escalates so do the repulsive ceremonies. Murder is introduced under the religious guise of a sacrifice. Killing another, real or imagined, is a powerful trauma. It produces a mind numbing denial that serves the group evil in two important ways: fear for one’s own safety and loss of love for one’s self. If an individual no longer loves himself he becomes valueless, the only remaining value becomes the group. The ritual may mix up pain and joy; a pleasure begins to be perceived as having a painful outcome. This results in the member becoming even more suspect of his own emotions, which under normal conditions help facilitate the decision making process. The person may be disoriented due to mind altering drugs or mind altering rituals reducing his confidence to decide what is the right action to take. The data necessary to make decisions may be removed, such as using the compulsory attendance at ceremonies whose time and place are unknown until just before they are to occur.”

177. Kid Shelleen - September 6, 2011

Cathie@160,

“I’m A Believer” vs. “Solitary Man”

Depends on what kind of mood one’s in.

Speaking synchronicity-wise, this could be the essential subject of this entire blog!

178. Opus111 - September 6, 2011

I’ll never tell

It is supposed to be D.v.d W..d

179. Ames Gilbert - September 6, 2011

I’ll Never Tell (#111-174 or thereabouts),
this is nit-picking, I know, not to mention inconsequential, but just in case some nutty historian ever uses the blog as a resource—the predecessor to the Galleria/Goethe Academy/Whatever was not a mobile home, it was a regular stick-built house, the so-called “Blake Cottage”. It probably came with the property. The attached garage had been converted to the Press Room when I first saw it in 1978; that was where the Journals were first printed, along with other propaganda, on two, foot¬¬–powered Columbia letterpresses. From there, one could enter the rest of the house, up some steps, to the kitchen, and from there along a corridor to other rooms.

This brings back memories . . .
I once did some work on a fountain and small pool outside, polished Dansk silver on the kitchen table, and ‘babysat’ Burton’s bedroom half–a–dozen times. I would arrive just as he left, and was directed to sit in a specific chair until he returned from dining at the Lodge; at that point he would kiss me on the forehead and tell me to go. I was never given a reason; maybe he thought I’d frighten away ghosts? I took the directions strictly, and didn’t even get up and have a look around. Just tried to remember myself, etc. I remember ornate French furniture, including a writing desk, a crystal chandelier, a Japanese–looking screen, the marble copy of the statue of Apollo Belvedare that later adorned the Town Hall stage for awhile. I think the curtains and bed covers were some heavy beige silk, but I can’t be certain after all these years. I never considered bringing my camera, though I do have 3–D stereo pictures of the outside, as well as of the process of replacing it with the faux–French thingy that is there now.

180. Tim Campion - September 6, 2011

179. Ames

I don’t think it is nit-picking. I had noticed the error a number of times and never spoke up. It makes me think about how many other errors we let slip, only to have them become a matter of record.

The house was part of an adjacent property purchased in the Spring of 1975. Do you recall the grasscloth wallpaper? (I was suitably impressed – the first time I had seen such a treatment.)

181. nigel - September 6, 2011

Definitions, Psychology Terms…..
Sociopath vs. Psychopath: What’s the Difference?

By Brittany • Dec 12th, 2010 • Category: Psychology Diagnosis of the Week

The study of criminal behavior involves learning the various mental disorders that can contribute to abnormal behavior. Sociopathy and psychopathy are terms used in psychology and criminology to refer to subsets of people with antisocial personality traits. Neither is an official diagnostic term; in the fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) each disorder is listed under the heading of Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD). Many psychiatrists use the terms interchangeably. There is, however, controversy over whether sociopaths and psychopaths share the same qualities.

Sociopathy and psychopathy share many traits, which is the main source of confusion for differentiating them in psychology. Traits that sociopaths and psychopaths share include:

■a disregard for the rights of others
■a failure to feel remorse or guilt
■a disregard for laws and social mores
■a tendency to display violent behavior and emotional outbursts
Though not all psychology professionals agree on what exactly differentiates sociopaths from psychopaths, among those who believe each are separate disorders there is a list of definite differences. Sociopaths tend to be nervous and easily agitated. They are likely to be uneducated and live on the fringes of society, unable to hold down a steady job or stay in one place. Some sociopaths form attachments to an individual or group, though they have no regard for society in general. In the eyes of others, sociopaths appear clearly disturbed. Any crimes committed by a sociopath tend to be disorganized and spontaneous.

Psychopaths, on the other hand, often have charming personalities. They are manipulative and easily gain people’s trust. They have learned to mimic emotion and so appear “normal” to other people. Psychopaths are often educated and hold steady jobs. Some are so good at manipulation and mimicry that they can have families and other long-term relationships without those around them ever suspecting their true nature.

Psychopaths, when committing crimes, carefully plan out every detail and often have contingency plans in place. Because of this marked difference between the method of crimes committed by sociopaths and psychopaths, the distinction between these disorders is perhaps even more important to criminology than it is to psychology.

Another belief among some professionals is that the etiology of the disorders is different. According to David Lykken, a behavioral geneticist known for his studies on twins, psychopathy stems from a physiological defect in the brain that results in the underdevelopment of the part of the brain responsible for impulse control and emotions. Sociopathy is more the product of childhood traumas and abuse. According to this model, some professionals believe that sociopaths are capable of empathy, but only in specific contexts.

For example, sociopaths may attach their loyalty to a person or group and will feel empathy for or not hurt those people to which they are attached. Psychopaths, however, have an inability to feel empathy and are just as likely to hurt their family and friends as they are strangers. Other psychologists make these same distinctions, but define them as primary psychopathy and secondary psychopathy.

182. Tim Campion - September 6, 2011

160. Cathie and 177. Kid Shelleen

Stop! You’re both wrong.

“I am…I said” was his best.

183. 2011 - September 7, 2011

My Neil Diamond vote(s)

Ballad- September Morn

Up tempo- Crunchy Granola Suite

184. Shirley - September 7, 2011

115 My2Bits

“I’ve been trained to swallow negative emotions, and unfortunately, I still do a good job at it. However, as my range of feelings becomes more available to me and I begin to acknowledge them, my healing progresses. The insight that I gain also helps me to understand and appreciate the diversity of perspectives on this blog. I can relate to you all.”

This seems so on target, for me. I remember, when I left the FF, that it took several years for the thawing out process to take place. For example, dissolving the attitude that there was a lesser category of people called “life people” – because once you’re out of the FF, you join their ranks, and that’s a humbling revelation. You start to ask yourself what makes you so different from the next person, really. We didn’t have much compassion in the FF. Kindness, yes, but I don’t think there was true compassion.

185. Palmyra - September 7, 2011

178 Opus 111

Do you know how is he? I know that D v W d worked for the Goldman’s for many years, so maybe the shock of Abraham’s suicide was very disheartening for him. I also know that he was a true believer and thought that Robert and the fellowship were authentic at least during my time there. I always liked him, though I thought he was very naive or was in complete denial – having worked in the Galleria for many years, he must have known what was going on, though he had the belief, I think, that the lower cannot understand the higher – like many of us who were brainwashed into believing that.

186. My2Bits - September 7, 2011

My heartfelt best wishes go out to D.W., if indeed he is in the difficult situation that some describe here. He was a good friend of mine for many years.

I remember when he was invited to Renaissance/Apollo/Isis from Germany to be a tour guide at the then Goethe Academy. He is a Goethe expert. It was to be his mission to help educate students in the finer points of European culture through describing the works of art displayed there. Housekeeper was to be his part-time job.

But the cultural emphasis shifted over the years to the Asian (Ming) phase, to the Egyptian phase, and so on, making his original mission more or less ‘history’.

After year upon year of tending to menial housekeeping duties at the cloistered Galleria, working for peanuts and depending on part-time, off-campus jobs to get by, seeing his youth and idealism as well as his ability to re-enter society slip away, perhaps it just became too much. I wish him, as ever, a clear way forward.

187. nigel - September 7, 2011

186. My2Bits

“…a clear way forward.”

That is what anyone should wish for anyone else – not drowning in a cult leader’s excreta…..Nigel.

188. fofblogmoderator - September 7, 2011

I must apologize for having missed some posts from “panorea” that would have landed (and are now on) the previous page. I will post them here through copying and pasting.

122. panorea – August 27, 2011
This seems to be the new invisible way to promote the Fellowship of Friends/Pathway to Presence/Living Presence…

Young people travelling…around the globe… Asaf must be the new messiah for the Fellowship followers, check their blog, check the aloof look in the eyes of the true believers…

Moderator; is it an idea to warn people that behind this young and fresh idea the Fellowship of Friends is watching?

http://www.noplacetobe.com/travelblog/random-traveller-road-less-traveled/

189. fofblogmoderator - September 7, 2011

187. panorea – August 29, 2011

Check a new way of advertising for the “teaching” of Robert Burton (it is a blog Asaf created but they never mention their close relationship to the Fellowship of Friends/Living Presence/Pathway to Presence). It might be of course that Asaf is going his own way with being a “leader/spiritual teacher”, or that he is getting ready to take over Burton’s role, the main thing is his followers who look ecstatic in all the photographs at his blog are the Fellowship of Friends…

http://www.noplacetobe.com/travelblog/random-traveller-road-less-traveled/

Asaf is traveler number 54 and here is the beginning of their text on the web site:

Quotation: Asaf Braverman used to work for a private art collector. He decided to set out on a quest to visit the places of origin of the objects he’d handled. He is currently authoring a novel on the origins and meaning of ancient art and ritual.

Ansley Braverman is a trained actress and photographer. She has traveled as a photographer throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Between travels, Ansley shoots weddings and portraits…end of Quotation

190. Ill Never Tell - September 7, 2011

179. Ames Gilbert – September 6, 2011:
‘I’ll Never Tell (#111-174 or thereabouts),
this is nit-picking, I know, not to mention inconsequential, but just in case some nutty historian ever uses the blog as a resource—the predecessor to the Galleria/Goethe Academy/Whatever was not a mobile home, it was a regular stick-built house, the so-called “Blake Cottage”. . .’

180. Tim Campion – September 6, 2011:
‘179. Ames
I don’t think it is nit-picking. I had noticed the error a number of times and never spoke up. It makes me think about how many other errors we let slip, only to have them become a matter of record.

The house was part of an adjacent property purchased in the Spring of 1975. Do you recall the grasscloth wallpaper? (I was suitably impressed – the first time I had seen such a treatment.)’

* * * * * *

Nit-picking is OK with me.

I stand corrected. I examined some old photos that I had from that era and found the Blake Cottage there. Yes, it was a smallish ‘stick-built house’ painted yellow.

As the Academy got built, the Blake Cottage was eventually disassembled and moved to another location, in Oregon House/Dobbins, not very far from where Ames used to live, as I may remember.

Yes, I ‘recall the grasscloth wallpaper.’ Certain elements of the place had the attempt of making it Zen-like, or a tad bit ineptly oriental. Shoes had to be removed before entering so that the gold alchemy would not be tarnished by the red clay-like soils native to the area. It was a sacred relic, after all, it was the residence of ‘The Teacher.’

But the real thing worth dwelling on is not this issue of what was the Blake Cottage, but, rather, the circumstances surrounding the activities supposedly secretly going on there that the housekeepers, and others, were aware of.

191. Kid Shelleen - September 7, 2011

“He decided to set out on a quest to visit the places of origin of the objects he’d handled.”

So, he takes people to Arkansas?

192. NG - September 7, 2011

Abraham Goldman
Funeral Service

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Minister J. B.’s Introduction
We are here to celebrate the life of our beloved friend, Abraham Goldman, and to express our gratitude for the privilege of having shared our lives with him.
The meaning of a student’s life is not to be found in its large events, in its apparent successes or failures. The moment C Influence first touches one, the true significance of one’s life is revealed: the transformation of a play, lovingly designed and guided by the Gods for a divine purpose.
At the death of a friend, we can see their play as a whole. We can see it as we cannot yet fully see our own: as a miraculous destiny, fully guided by a higher hand, perfect. Abraham’s play has come to fruition, so that he might now truly say, “Father, I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do”.
Let us stand and honor Abraham with our silent presence.
(Silence)

Eulogy: G. R.
Abraham Goldman, 1949-2011
When one of our fellow students completes his role, it is always a shock. In the case of our beloved friend Abraham Goldman, that shock cuts particularly deep. Because Abraham was so masterful at concealing his suffering — because he always greeted us with one of his sweet smiles or a warm hug —his death took us by surprise.
Higher Forces though are also masterful in revealing a profound design in his passing. So here we are today to express our love for Abraham, to honour the love and devotion he felt for his Teacher, for his family, and for his friends, and to bid him safe passage as he continues his journey beyond this life.
Abraham was a servant. Our Teacher called him “The Shield of Apollo.” He was a member of the Fellowship for over 32 years—more than half his life—and for much of that time he served as the Fellowship’s legal counsel, navigating our ship through difficult waters, never abandoning his responsibilities, never swerving in his support of our Teacher and Higher Forces. Abraham was completely devoted to Robert. And through his unwavering devotion to the School, he gave something of himself to each one of us. He gave more to the School, in fact, than most of us will ever know. But he never called attention to himself. One friend said that “service was his signature”. As a true servant, he was content in the simple well-being of those he served.
Those of us who were close to Abraham will remember him for his kindness, his generosity, his valuation, his love. For the “nobility of his heart.” For his ability to “be the words.” Abraham’s mother had been the personal secretary of their Rabbi and as a child Abraham had often helped out at the synagogue. He had even considered becoming a Rabbi himself. But then he discovered his love of the law. The law enabled him to express his desire to help people in need. The oppressed. The maligned. The injured. The forgotten. He repeatedly took on cases no one else would take. He was deeply involved in civil rights litigation in Chicago, where he was born, and when faced with a challenge, a difficult case that he believed in, he would not give up, even if it took years for a decision to be reached. He became known as a “peacemaker,” someone who built bridges between opposing groups. The law was where Abraham’s inspiration flowed, where he could bring his patience, his compassion, his keen intelligence. As a lawyer living at Apollo he represented many of us over the years in our legal battles. As the Fellowship lawyer he successfully represented the School for an untold number of occasions.
Abraham was a devoted husband to Susan for 27 years, and a loving father to Rosie and Elan. One could feel the warmth and affection that passed between them. It was palpable. Abraham and Susan’s marriage was deeply founded in the Work. They worked together building centers in Rome and Chicago, and they worked together building Apollo; together they created a beautiful home, inviting students into an elegant environment of concerts and dinners and workshops, a loving chalice for the School. Abraham’s law office at Apollo also provided work for many students. When you visited his office, though, you didn’t see framed certificates or diplomas. You saw photos of the family, the children’s handmade cards for Father’s Day and their birthday greetings in colourful crayon. The legal world can be a treacherous landscape, a minefield, a desert. Susan, Rosie, and Elan were Abraham’s oasis.
Few of us could understand the suffering that Abraham went through with his hearing disability. He experienced terrible headaches, and he often coexisted with what he used to describe as ‘an air raid siren and a fog horn’ continually blasting in his ear. But as terrible as the physical pain was, the disorientation and isolation of being thrust into a world of silence was worse.
Our Work, however, teaches us that suffering is a fixative, a bracing gift from the Gods that, when silently transformed, makes presence permanent in us. So while Abraham worked silently and invisibly to meet his suffering, a part of him was created that could transcend suffering, and survive the shock of his death.
And in that shock we again see Abraham’s role as a servant. For his death, and the many signs that have accompanied it, produced World Six in us. It’s difficult to accept that the manner of Abraham’s death was an inevitable part of his play. But here at Apollo and in centers around the world, Higher Forces have communicated that what has happened, was written. That his soul is safe. One cannot fathom the ways of the Gods. But as one of our friends observed, Abraham never argued against heaven’s hand. So we too, in bidding farewell to him, we also accept heaven’s hand.
Minister’s Conclusion:
May Abraham’s capacity to serve inspire us to fulfill our own allotted tasks with greater resolve and courage.
May the intensity of his suffering deepen our understanding of how firmly the Gods may, in their wisdom, choose to press upon us; and our understanding of why.
It remains only to bid the hero farewell. The Teacher’s farewell to Abraham was inspired by a eulogy written by Walt Whitman’s for a fallen soldier:
Hard has been thy part,
To conscious life has it been enacted!
Abraham: father, husband, servant, warrior, friend, we thank thee.

At the Cemetery: Minister’s Introduction
Here on this beautiful day, we release Abraham to his home, and return his ashes to the earth.

Minister’s Conclusion
The earth returns to the earth and a divine spark returns to its divine source. “Love comes from eternity, and returns into eternity”. The circle of life is complete.

193. Tim Campion - September 7, 2011

190. Ill Never Tell

“But the real thing worth dwelling on is not this issue of what was the Blake Cottage, but, rather, the circumstances surrounding the activities supposedly secretly going on there that the housekeepers, and others, were aware of.”

***

After 111 pages (quite an Opus), I’d say we’ve done a good job of dwelling on this dwelling (and others), and especially on the secret world within its walls.

(Hey, INT! I just noticed we had a cottage named after you: The Homer Cottage. And that was before the Simpsons even aired. This truly must have been the work of Influence C!)

194. WhaleRider - September 7, 2011

Minister J. B.:
“…a miraculous destiny, fully guided by a higher hand, perfect.”

G.R.:
“Abraham never argued against heaven’s hand. So we too, in bidding farewell to him, we also accept heaven’s hand.”

So heaven’s higher hand is now guiding followers to commit suicide?

195. Ames Gilbert - September 7, 2011

I’ll Never Tell (#111-190 or thereabouts),
you say, “But the real thing worth dwelling on is not this issue of what was the Blake Cottage, but, rather, the circumstances surrounding the activities supposedly secretly going on there that the housekeepers, and others, were aware of.” I agree, that is what is important.
I quoted from “Strange Truth”, an unpublished manuscript by someone who was a housekeeper at the ‘Blake Cottage’, when writing about the unfortunate history of Brian Sisler (#16-438). Here is another excerpt which encapsulates what went on so often, and still goes on to this day in the Fellowship of Friends: the triangle between Burton, one of Burton’s ‘boys’ and the wife or girlfriend of the ‘boy’. All names were changed in the original manuscript to protect them against retribution or other harm. And I have removed the author’s name below to protect her.
__________________________________________________
Justin and Daisy, a newly wed couple, had recently moved to the Farm. Daisy was only twenty, a beautiful sweet young woman. She told me she only joined the School to be with Justin. They had been together since childhood and knew no other loves. Daisy graduated from high school, but she was almost totally lacking in education, knowing little except that she loved Justin.
When the Teacher began to court him, Justin started ignoring Daisy. He moved into the Lodge and refused to speak to her, not even letting her stand near him. Daisy went wild with grief, but managed to maintain a certain cool exterior at social gatherings. Many people thought she did not care, the fools.
Daisy was put on salary, and began to help me at the Teacher’s house. Helena now worked at the School’s office, and Daisy replaced her. Frequently, during my four years as his maid, the women asked to help me were the wives of his boyfriends. I assumed the Teacher thought this was some sort of compensation for them, a way of paying them back for having taken their men away. It was considered a great honor to even get invited to the house for a brief visit.
*****************************
“Dearest (name withheld), I have noticed that sawdust gathers on the floor in front of the baseboard behind your des. Perhaps there are woodworms in the baseboard? Perhaps they will consume your desk next?”
I was writing the Teacher a little note, carefully considering each word. Looking up, I saw Daisy, flushed and shaking, skitter down the hall towards me, socks sliding on the highly polished wooden floor. Nearly barreling into me, she clutched at my arm and began bouncing in place.
“Xxxx, Justin’s clothes are in the closet, the boy’s room closet!” Her hands flew up to cover her pretty little mouth. Her eyes were round with shock. Would she start crying, I wondered. She had already cried so much. But no, she just continued to bounce in place, not knowing whether to be happy or sad.
And me? I was sad. But I couldn’t say so, and I couldn’t tell her why. She probably wouldn’t have believed me anyway. It was so hard to face the reality of the situation.
And when, day after day, we encountered Justin lying in a speechless heap on the boy’s room floor, Daisy still did not understand, and I still protected the Teacher.
__________________________________________________
My commentary. The author was being magnanimous, IMHO, about Burton’s motives. Putting the wives on salary or giving them a (usually menial) role was not “compensation”, it was calculated cruelty, one aspect of his revenge on womankind. My observations were that this cruelty was specific in the case of the wives, a flaunting of his power over them, and often was both public and as drawn out as long as possible over time. Think of it, what an absolute power trip! He subdues heterosexual males, has them act against their inclinations, reaches into their sex centers and stirs with malicious and random glee, and revenges himself on both them and their wives for having had the effrontery to have shared love and sex with each other before he appeared on the scene, and for having diverted attention and sperm from his insatiable maw.
Rinse and repeat hundreds of times.
Truly, “You shall have no other gods before me”.

BTW, the link to the Brian Sisler post mentioned above is: http://fellowshipoffriends.wordpress.com/2007/07/22/the-fellowship-of-friends-discussion-part-16/#comment-4213
For some reason, the blog post numbers have been removed as these older pages were archived; makes it much harder to find things . . .

196. Ames Gilbert - September 7, 2011

NG (#111-192 or thereabouts), thanks for revealing this to us.

So, would so–called ‘ministers’ of the Fellowship of Friends/Pathway to Presence/Living Presence/Being Present.org / Church of Robert Earl Burton, kindly care to explain the difference between the suicides of Abraham Goldman and Kevin Kelly? Or the differences in your explanations and treatment thereof? What the fuck do you tell the sheep?

Or are you willing to entertain the notion that the differences just reflect the whimsies of the moment of Dear and Maximum Leader Burton? Whatever suits his purposes at the time, or even just random firings of his drug–bathed neurons?

All those noble–sounding words are an insult to the truth, and to the few that have genuine cause to grieve. You simply don’t know. The ‘signs’ accompanying his death are hogwash conjured out of thin air, with even thinner ‘interpretations’. Just look at the mish–mash of mixed belief systems poking out like bones from a decaying carcass, ranging from echoes of the Fourth Way to full–blown fantasies from the canons of the Church of Robert Burton. The utter conviction of your superiority. The cover–up for Burton’s panic as a crack appears in his narcissistic worldview; maybe one of his slaves took the only way out to escape.

What a pile of turds, what a waste of everyone’s time, this long–winded mix of political statement and self–calming. All dressed up fancy, of course.

197. Golden Veil - September 7, 2011

One of the Teacher Robert E. Burton’s role models?

“… the sources focus upon his cruelty, extravagance, and sexual perversity, presenting him as an insane tyrant. While the reliability of these sources has increasingly been called into question, it is known that during his brief reign, Caligula worked to increase the authority of the emperor. He directed much of his attention to ambitious construction projects and notoriously luxurious dwellings for himself.”

From Wikipedia, on the Roman Emperor Caligula

Does anyone have anything say about the former Fellowship of Friends Student Mervyn Brady, who is now deceased but founded the Academy Of European Arts & Culture in 1991? Did anyone know him as a Student. I am curious about this group… anyone have fellowship with them?

http://www.academyofeuropeanarts.com/?page_id=2

198. Tim Campion - September 7, 2011

192. NG (aka silentburp, Mr. Burp, J. D., John Doe, silentblur, King of Comments, etc., etc.)

This is sounding more like “good old-fashioned religion”. Which is kind of a step forward in a way. Increasingly, there is little to distinguish this congregation from other devoted and isolated congregations. Their pastor, along with his inner circle, is another matter, as he ranks among the darker “spiritual leaders” to have been exposed in recent decades, and one who reminds us of the founders of Jonestown, the Branch Davidian, Aum Shinrikyo, Scientology, Heaven’s Gate, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and others.

199. silentpurr - September 7, 2011

The Fellowship are Cowards of the Truth. If they actually possessed the ability to look to what is “higher”, they would be listening to their CHILDREN and looking to their children’s best interests instead of placing their kids under Robert’s continuim of unnecessary “laws” and “words” to live by….
I remember when we were informed that parents were to instruct our children to refer to us as “mother” and “father”. My daughter was by then about 9, and on a first name basis with everyone including us. She remembers feeling concerned for us and the long reach of the unseen entity known as Robert. It was an unfair exercise and she resented it. We were also told to not be seen naked by our children, which she thought was creepy..
At about that same time he asked me to ask her to consider taking lessons for the harp. she refused.
Later, as an adult, she remembers liking the harp at that time, but resented our, as she says, “treating Robert as if he were a god”.

200. Tim Campion - September 7, 2011

199. silentpurr

What an awesome daughter!

201. Wouldnt You Like To Know - September 7, 2011

192. NG – September 7, 2011:
AG’s funeral transcript.
Thank you for that.
I understand that Robert Earl Burton
was in attendance, which is rare for
this sort of thing of late.

195. Ames Gilbert – September 7, 2011:
Thank you for repeating that.

196. Ames Gilbert – September 7, 2011:
‘All dressed up fancy, of course.’

And, no where to go, except death row.

Wouldnt You Like To Know?

202. nigel - September 7, 2011

197. Golden Veil

Mervyn Brady joined the FOF at the London Centre sometime in 1979. His estranged wife, Milagros, had joined the ‘school’ about six months previously and so Mervyn joined with his Martial girlfriend. Mervyn left the FOF, for some reason (finances?) in 1980 and re-entered quite quickly (within a year). He was some type of businessman, which probably gave rise to his forming his ‘academy’. My suspicion is that he ‘did a Burton’ and decided that he had enough ‘being’ in what he had gained from the FOF to start his own group and have power and money (sex?). The little ‘blurb’, somewhere in the description of the set-up of the ‘academy’ states that he was an ‘enlightened being’ along with some of those proposed by Burton. I do not know what has happened to the sub-structure of the ‘academy’ since Brady has been deceased. This is all I know (and not all for certain – some dates and events may not be correct). Anyone else with information for Golden Veil?…..Nigel.

203. nigel - September 7, 2011

“We are taught to measure in years and months from our birth, yet my soul is always young … and remains so … regardless of the creature’s concept of time. My soul feels that it belongs to the ages and eons, rather than to the mortal life of the creature.”
Mervyn Brady

204. rock that boat - September 7, 2011

192. NG – September 7, 2011
Eulogy: Abraham Goldman

Poor Abraham
He hang himself on opening night (or one of the first nights) of Journey Fourth By Day. The big money maker of the year, visitors from all over the world, …..then Abe hangs himself during the opening weekend of ‘Journey Fourth’..during the Ballet at the Theatron … during The Ballet… for Pete’s sake!!! Roberts favorite thing!!! (If Abe loved RB that much he would have waited a bit.)
It would be pathetic if no one sees the real reason…..ABE HANG HIMSELF because HE WAS ANGRY, ABE wanted to HURT BURTON.

205. fofblogmoderator - September 7, 2011

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