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Fellowship Of Friends/Fourth Way School/Living Presence Discussion – Page 191 October 2, 2021

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

Here, you can share your thoughts, your stories, your own experiences as a former member of the FOF.  If you are considering becoming a member, you are invited to read the discussion to better know the organization you are considering joining; we welcome your questions. Participants in the discussion may post under their own name, or anonymously.

The first comment of all new participants will be moderated before they can start communicating in real-time.  You will need to register with a valid email address and be able to reply to the welcome/verification email you will receive. If you are new to the discussion, your comment will appear within a day after it has been submitted; any subsequent comments will appear instantaneously.

At the Moderator’s discretion, excessive abuse, such as personal attacks, taking up too much space, as well as deliberate attempts to unmask people taking part in the discussion anonymously will prompt a warning. Continued abuse will result in your removal from the discussion.

To visit the official site of The  Fellowship Of Friends;

http://livingpresence.com/

To hear the new Spotify expose on the Fellowship;

Comments

1. Tim Campion - October 2, 2021

Rich (190-99)

From Jennings Brown:

Here is the link to the podcast page. Right now it just has the trailer. When the first episode comes out it will be on that page. Episodes will be released every Sunday. There are six total.

2. ton2u - October 2, 2021

Thanks Tim… been looking forward to this for a while. Lost touch with Jennings after our conversations… I wonder if you might have his email? (If so I think you might still have mine).

3. ton2u - October 2, 2021

Rich @ pg. 190 # 97

Re: “Reject —ism & its and the like”

Just to clarify, my post was not an endorsement of one or the other, or any of the “isms / ists” listed there on the previous page. It’s about recognition and acknowledgment of various possible “points of view,” frames of reference – in self and others. It’s about identifying a spectrum of “tendencies” in a variety of different possible “mind-sets” which can lead to balkanizing humans into various “camps” – depending on “point-of-view.”

The spirit v matter philosophical debate that’s been ongoing for generation upon generation as an example of two seemingly at-odds “mind-sets” – it surfaces here on occasion – that’s what reminded me of the book read some years back… hence the post.

I agree in principle that “rejecting” certain “isms” would make for more harmonious human interaction / relations – but I think a problem is that we tend not to see an “ism” in operation – especially in the self. One “ism” or another seems to be part of the imprinting, an “in-doctrination” process which starts from the very earliest years of living in a particular culture, in-forming the way one views the world… the “warp and weft” of society is thereby created, individuals with their points of view being the threads that go into the fabric.

It’s not a question of “rejecting” or, conversely, “accepting” a particular “ism.” If you don’t recognize and acknowledge the viewing lens for what it is, and if you can’t recognize that others may be viewing through a different colored lens, then there’s not really a “choice” to “reject” – it becomes more like what has been described as an “automatism.” “Sides” are created, “digging in” and intransigence seems to be the result.

4. amesgilbert - October 2, 2021

Thanks for the heads–up, Tim. Should be very interesting. The website shows a lot of co–producers, hopefully the podcasts aren’t over–produced. A simple, well edited story should suffice.
That guy at the end of the trailer, “That should be sufficient warning—would you like some banana bread?”… what a maroon, hopefully that is the low point of these podcasts!

Anyway, for those interested, a search on Jennings Brown brings up some of his previous work. I found the interviews with the last people still living in “Iron Lungs” due to Polio to be exceptionally well done and very moving. Here are the links to those:

https://gizmodo.com/the-last-of-the-iron-lungs-1819079169
https://gizmodo.com/mormonleaks-goes-to-battle-with-mormon-church-over-leak-1793233049

And here are links to two platforms where you can listen to a six-part audio documentary he produced about Teal Swan, yet another one in the endless line of “gurus”). This production seemed very even–handed, IMHO:

Of course, start with part 1:
https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/panoply/the-gateway-2
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-gateway-teal-swan/id1387560474?mt=2

5. amesgilbert - October 3, 2021

Just listened to the first episode of Jennings Brown’s “Revelations” podcast. A promising start, and left me looking forward to the next episode, wherein Jennings is present in Oregon House for the 2018 version of the “Fall of California” (spoiler alert, California finally fully failed to fall, as more alert readers will have no doubt already noticed).

I was particularly taken with the episode of Burton’s parrot–in–exile, and how its shrieking woke Jennings up in the middle of his first night at the Airbnb he rented (unbeknownst to him) from a present follower of Burton.

Important questions naturally arise—why did Burton obtain a parrot in the first place, and why was this unfortunate bird subsequently banished? The answer to the first question is obviously, Burton had yet another brain fart, and the random firing of neurons concatenated in that particular instant of time, as an overwhelming need for a parrot. Various minions, trained to obey Burton’s every impulsive caprice and notion without hesitation, leapt to satisfy this latest whim, and in due course a parrot was obtained.

I think I have an answer to the second question, and it is this. The bird is a natural empath, and was translating and voicing the mental agonies of Burton’s victims. This may seem far–fetched, but when you think of the capabilities of other species of birds, it is a perfectly rational possibility. Consider migratory birds, such as terns or swifts, that have a detailed mental map and are able to navigate up to 11,000 miles twice a year, or a jay that has a vocabulary of several hundred words, or a crow that can not only invent and use tools, but strategize to use them in novel circumstances.
Why would such a sensitive parrot, involuntarily confined with Burton against its will, not pick up on the emotional distress of Burton’s victims, and, unable to escape, come to internalize those agonies? Why would that ill–starred bird not try to express and release these torments, then and later?
Listen again to the shrieks that Jennings recorded that night. Could not these be the vocalizations of the despairing psychic wails of Burton’s hapless prey when they finally realize their predicament and are forced to actualize his desires?

6. outoftime761 - October 4, 2021

Did anyone notice in the trailer for Jennings Browns’ “Reaction,” the girl in the middle is stifling a yawn? Hope the following material is more interesting.

7. Tim Campion - October 4, 2021

4. amesgilbert

Were you citing a famous Burton catchphrase when you asked Jennings, “Would you like some banana bread?”

8. 44thWay - October 5, 2021

#96 ton2u
Is all that quoted from Rudolph Steiner? Whether it is or not, it is somewhat incoherent. Steiner was yet another cult leader not without some unsavoury ideas. However I take the main point you are making, which is that falling into an -ism can limit one. But that does not mean that one should not make the attempt to understand the world, rather one should be aware of the limitations of one’s own reasoning (and the tendency of emotions to over-ride reason while at the same time convincing oneself that one is being perfectly reasonable). Been there, done that.

9. WhaleRider - October 5, 2021

Number of Victims Sexually Abused by Cult Leader Not Enough to Ask For Forgiveness

Mauvaise Maison, CA- A recent report by independent investigators has revealed that clergy members in the Roman Catholic Church in France sexually abused more than 200,000 victims over the past seven decades.

Éric de Moulins-Beaufort, the archbishop of Reims and the president of the Bishop’s Conference of France, called the commission’s findings alarming and expressed his shame, adding that he was determined to act.

“Their voice moves us deeply. Their number overwhelms us,” he said of the victims. “It goes beyond what we might have imagined,” he added. “Today, I want to ask for your forgiveness.”

But a spokesperson for a Northern California Cult once known as the Fellowship of “Friends” displays a deaf ear to the voices of their victims of clergy abuse, claiming that their unrepentant leader, Robert E Burton, feels no shame for sexually exploiting his followers and has absolutely no intention of asking for forgiveness, since the numbers of his victims are estimated to be only in the “low thousands”.

“Obviously it goes with the territory when you give a person power over you”, said cult enthusiast Steven Damnbeckncall, “but we believe shame and guilt are forms of feminine dominance to be shunned in order for us to evolve into our present state. We imagine 800 to 1200 victims over the course of just four or five decades is a small price to pay to be given the keys to Paradise.”

One outspoken critic of the cult asks, “Paradise for who?”

10. ton2u - October 5, 2021

44th way @

Sounds like you got the point of the post!

11. WhaleRider - October 7, 2021

Yuba County Legislators Unanimously Support a New Law to Ban Cult’s So-Called Gay Conversion Practice

Bounce House, CAAfter several decades of reported sexual exploitation of young straight men by a flamboyantly gay Northern California cult leader, Robert E Burton, the new law would introduce prison sentences and fines for the cult leader and his enablers in the Fellowship of Friends who attempt to change the sexual orientation of young heterosexual men or immigrants who naively join the cult hoping to “evolve” from “feminine dominance” or at least escape the dire situation they might face in their home country.

Yuba County lawmakers voted 44-0 on Tuesday night for the draft law.

“These conversion practices are deplorable,” said Yuba County Health Department Director, Gerard Freeman, “they cause terrible shame and suffering in silence when the spell is broken.” Freeman also tweeted the hashtag “No Way to the Fourth Way” in support of the proposed legislation.

The cult’s practice of trying to “bait and switch straight young men to homosexuality by dangling ‘evolution’, expensive pajamas, endless blowjobs, or a green card is scientifically discredited and morally reprehensible”, Freeman said.

The proposed legislation in Yuba County would introduce criminal penalties of up to two years in jail and $30,000 in fines. Sentences could be increased to three years imprisonment and fines of $45,000 for attempts involving particularly vulnerable young men recruited and trafficked by cult members from third world countries.

So far the cult has refused to comment.

12. Associated Press - October 12, 2021

191/5 amesgilbert – October 3, 2021
“I was particularly taken with the episode of Burton’s parrot–in–exile, and how its shrieking woke Jennings up in the middle of his first night at the Airbnb he rented (unbeknownst to him) from a present follower of Burton.

Important questions naturally arise—why did Burton obtain a parrot in the first place, and why was this unfortunate bird subsequently banished? The answer to the first question is obviously, Burton had yet another brain fart, and the random firing of neurons concatenated in that particular instant of time, as an overwhelming need for a parrot. Various minions, trained to obey Burton’s every impulsive caprice and notion without hesitation, leapt to satisfy this latest whim, and in due course a parrot was obtained. . .”

The reason for the parrot was to train it to say: “What fools these mortals be.” But it refused to do so and would only say: “What mules these fartals be.”

13. 44thWay - October 14, 2021

An enquiry about ‘conscious evil.’

I seem to recall that either Gurdjieff or Ouspensky said that conscious evil is impossible (echoing Socrates). I also seem to recall that someone high up in the Fellowship was saying that the Fellowship has now abandoned the idea of conscience, or else that conscience was feminine dominance, or something of that kind.

Can anyone point me to the source (if there is one) of the latter claim?

14. WhaleRider - October 15, 2021

Here’s an interesting contrast and counter-narrative, IMHO, to the FOF cult narrative about “sleep, dreams, higher centers, and being awake”.

The periodic table of elements and the spiral helix of DNA are just two examples of the subconscious solving a puzzle in dreamtime that the dreamer couldn’t resolve when awake.

From “Waking Dreams”, an article about the theme for Burning Man-2022.

https://apple.news/A0-TE2-gkNjiqsoIsZdzVOw

Sleep temples (also known as dream temples or Egyptian sleep temples) are regarded by some as an early instance of hypnosis over 4000 years ago, under the influence of Imhotep. Imhotep served as Chancellor and as High Priest of the sun god Ra at Heliopolis. He was said to be a son of the ancient Egyptian demiurge Ptah, his mother being a mortal named Khredu-ankh.

Sleep temples were hospitals of sorts, healing a variety of ailments, perhaps many of them psychological in nature. The treatment involved chanting, placing the patient into a trance-like or hypnotic state, and analysing their dreams in order to determine treatment. Meditation, fasting, baths, and sacrifices to the patron deity or other spirits were often involved as well.

Sleep temples also existed in the Middle East and Ancient Greece. In Greece, they were built in honor of Asclepios, the Greek god of medicine and were called Asclepieions. The Greek treatment was referred to as incubation and focused on prayers to Asclepios for healing. A similar Hebrew treatment was referred to as Kavanah and involved focusing on letters of the Hebrew alphabet spelling the name of their god. In 1928, Mortimer Wheeler unearthed a Roman sleep temple at Lydney Park, Gloucestershire, with the assistance of a young J.R.R. Tolkien.”

~Wikipedia

burton operates a gilded, thinly veiled rape factory.

15. Linda Jo - October 15, 2021
16. 44thWay - October 15, 2021

#14. Whalerider

You can add Kerkulé’s discovery of the structure of benzene, Archimedes’s eureka moment about measuring density (he was in the bath rather than actually asleep), and Coleridge’s poem ‘Kubla Khan’ to that list (when he was properly awake he forgot the rest of it).

I don’t see this as a counter-narrative. You can be mindful (not hypnotised by circling and tormenting thoughts) and still value the creative unconscious mind. The Dogon tribe of West Africa have a divination system to help them solve tricky problems, which involves setting up a diagram in the dust, putting bits of meat on it, going away to sleep (the foxes will rearrange the diagram in the night) and coming back the next morning to interpret the results. In this way mechanical mind is bypassed. The essence of problem-solving is shown by this method: define the problem (set up the diagram) using waking intellect, then relax and let the creative (unconscious) mind give you the solution.

This is why Google sets things up for their creatives as they do, turning problem-solving into play.

The problem with the Fourth Way is that it insists on remembering yourself ‘always and everywhere,’ which is where some of the unnecessary tension comes from, and the entirely unsubstantiated belief that doing this will somehow make you immortal ‘at the scale of the Solar System.’

17. Robert Patterson - October 17, 2021

#16. 44th Way

One of the mistakes we make is to take Gurdjieff’s ideas too simply. This is particularly the case for persons who have been exposed to G.’s ideas primarily, or entirely, through books like Ouspensky’s “In Search of the Miraculous” or through persons who purport to teach based on their reading of books like that (notably, RB and the FOF).

For instance, G says, at times, remember yourself “always and everywhere”. However, at other times, he says try to remember yourself in a definite way for a definite period of time (5 minutes, a half hour – usually in connection with an effort to do some exercise or other). After that, let it go (“Do as you always do.” or “To the Devil!”). In the second case, the emphasis is on a focused, more intense effort as opposed to our usual half ass or tension creating (pick your poison) efforts to remember ourselves always and everywhere.

Our tendency to take G’s ideas in an oversimplified way is one of the things that created the wiggle room for RB to exploit G’s ideas for his egoistic purposes. To be clear about it, RB and the FOF have made a mockery of G’s ideas and it is categorically wrong to equate the two.

18. Golden Veil - October 17, 2021

Revelations:

19. Golden Veil - October 17, 2021

What I would like to see as a title for the revealing podcast:

Revelations: The Fellowship of Friends

That way, seekers doing due diligence before joining the esoteric, “Fourth Way School” they think they’ve found can find this podcast and learn more about the cult.

I hope that the title can be edited – and it would not need to be edited in the video – just the Spotify listing of the video so it will show up in online search engines results when people search the name Fellowship of Friends.

My takeaway after listening to the third episode: Mass hypnosis is real.

20. WhaleRider - October 17, 2021

44th Way:
A shaman I once knew named Fred taught me a Navajo problem solving technique of walking “aimlessly” into the desert or woods, finding a rock about the size of your hand that seems to speak to you, bringing it back to your tent, concentrating intently on the shape which facilitates a trance, and then letting the rock “speak to you”. All good, IMHO.

Whether an individual is reading random bits of meat in the dust, the entrails of a dead sheep or tea leaves in a tea cup, I think we can agree that the art of divination usually requires the interpreter to go into a some kind of trance in order to consciously enter the dream-like realm of archetypes and metaphor, right?

From what I understood about the fourth way, going into a trance, meditating, imagining what the structure of benzene might look like…all represent a counter-productive activity vis à vis to the process of “being awake, “conscious” and “present”, i.e. attending to whatever is before you in order to suck up more “hydrogens”, all while feeding the ego-ark of the cult leader. (burton never went that deep, he preferred reading street signs and license plates.)

Labeling the process of critical thinking “mechanical” seems like a vestige of cult indoctrination, IMO, or are you speaking of some other kind of thought process?

Robert Patterson:
One of the mistakes we make is to take Gurdjieff’s ideas too simply.

What do you mean “we”, white man?

You’re referring to a guy who used his position of power to fuck his follower’s wives.

Actions speak louder than ideas.

21. Insider - October 18, 2021

With the release of the first 3 episodes of the “Revelations” podcast (https://open.spotify.com/show/2bJD2GgwlPxF2UFVS1h84c), I was reminded of the letter Miles Barth wrote to a friend in the late ‘80s. Here are the first 2 paragraphs of that letter:

“Though I view RB now as a truly evil person, and his group as a pathetic caricature of a ‘school,’ my real interest has focused on the characteristics in both my personality and in human nature in general that were responsible for my remaining in FOF as long as I did.

“Though I learned much while in FOF, and much more by leaving it, it has been very hard to acknowledge that I was a fool to remain with it for as long as I did, and that I had to remain because I was a fool. RB did not fool me; he fooled himself, and I fooled myself. He exploited our weaknesses because we were there with them, and he could not do otherwise because of his own twisted belief system.”

As is made crystal-clear in the podcast, thanks to longtime FF flock member, and blind RB follower, “Marcus,” Burton’s power derives from Fellowsheepers like Marcus putting their life, power and fortune into Burton’s hands.

22. Robert Patterson - October 18, 2021

#20 Whalerider

By “we” I mean anyone who has seriously tried to work with G’s ideas.

As I tried to make clear in my post, the purposes for which RB used G’s ideas is not a reflection on the quality and truth of the ideas – its only proof of the personal weaknesses of RB and his followers as well as a lesson on how the very best of ideas can be twisted for nefarious purposes. RB is an uber predator. I speculate that if RB hadn’t come across G ideas he would have found some other means of preying on people.

23. Robert Patterson - October 18, 2021

#19. Golden Veil

“Mass hypnosis is real.” Gurdjieff told us that 100 years ago. He also said we are incapable of recognizing our state of mass hypnosis (a product of our “Education” from birth) because it has become the typical (though not normal) state of human beings. We are only able to discern the hypnotic state of human beings when it appears in an accelerated, more intense form such as cult brainwashing (FOF style).

We should focus on the many things that we are hypnotized by in our daily lives rather than point the ‘finger of blame’ at current FOF’ers and say, “Can’t you see how hypnotized YOU are!”

PS. If you have never heard the expression, when we point the finger of blame at someone there are always three fingers pointing back at us (try it).

24. WhaleRider - October 18, 2021

Robert Patterson:
Again you refer to a guy who thought breathing horse manure was a cure for TB, who also used his “ideas” for nefarious purposes: that of fleecing his followers of money and fucking their wives.

What makes you think those in the FOF, especially in the earlier days, were not seriously working with Mr G’s “ideas”?

Here’s another expression: Give me a break!!

Let me remind you, the internet is the place where cults like the one you appear to be promoting come to die.

BTW, you can stop pointing the finger at hypnosis, too. Without it, you wouldn’t remember how to tie your shoes.

25. 44thWay - October 19, 2021

#20 Whalerider

You may be right that my use of the term ‘mechanical mind’ is a vestige of cult thinking. However the mind does sometimes (often) work mechanically and associatively. In terms of problem-solving I used a different term:

“The essence of problem-solving is shown by this method: define the problem (set up the diagram) using waking intellect, then relax and let the creative (unconscious) mind give you the solution.”

By ‘waking intellect’ in this context I mean the mind actually working, making an effort to understand something. Only by making this effort is the problem set up for creative mind to produce a solution.

#17 Robert Patterson

Gurdjieff certainly had a way of making things complicated. The complexity I think adds nothing either to the truth or the practicality of his system.

Let’s take the example of self-remembering. How is this different from the modern practice of ‘mindfulness’? Is the practice of self-remembering part of healing or of transformation (assuming we go along for the moment with the idea of six processes)? If the latter, in what way does the latter differ from the former?

26. WhaleRider - October 19, 2021

44th Way:
Thank you for the clarification. I think we agree on the value of ‘thinking outside the box’, so to speak, when problem solving, and the many roads to get there.

IMO, the effort lies in suspending “conscious, intentional” critical thinking about the problem in order to receive creative solutions from the “unconscious” part of the mind, which seems to work on “autopilot” in both a different dimension and slower time frame. And thank goodness for that.

On the other hand, when you make statements like:

…the mind does sometimes (often) work mechanically and associatively.

…I may be wrong, it appears to me that you are making a value judgement in a pejorative sense when equating an associative thought process with being “mechanical”; the inference being that anything “mechanical” is unintentional and therefore of lessor value in the fourth way when pursuing so-called, “consciousness”.

Weren’t we indoctrinated in the FOF to strive for operating in the “kings of centers”? IMO, that only contributes to self-debasement and splitting of the psyche.

Consider this: Freud used word association as an uncovering technique to help his patients gain insight and understanding about how their past experiences effect their present and future.

By charting the ‘knee jerk’, reflexive response to certain words Freud found that beneath the neurosis of his patients operated a hidden narrative of which they were dimly or completely unaware, although granted Freud did fall prey to his own confirmation bias with regard to promoting his theory of the ‘oedipus complex’.

Personally, I value the part of my mind that operates associatively, in that the process of association is how a person learns and remembers. Is not the concept of ‘Self’ comprised of associations and built upon memories?

27. ton2u - October 20, 2021

Whalerider @ 20

Henry Corbin writes voluminously on and around the topic and importance of accessing the “imaginal,” the realm of archetypes…. Jung’s use of “active imagination” for transformational purposes is a different take on imagination but plays in the same ballpark so to speak, along with your own past endorsements of “lucid dreaming” here on the blog. All of this, it seems to me, is contrary to FOF programming which implies imagination is something “negative” and to be avoided at the cost of one’s very soul… just another tool in the kit of cult mind control.

28. ton2u - October 20, 2021
29. 44thWay - October 21, 2021

#26 Whalerider, #27 ton2u

“And as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown
The poet’s pen turns them to shapes
And gives to airy nothing a local habitation and a name.”
– Shakespeare

We all tend to get confused by words. The word ‘imagination’ was used in a very positive sense by some medieval philosophers and also by William Blake. For some it represents the abstract, Platonic realm of Forms, which, if you believe that Plato was right (which is not universally accepted) is the ultimate reality. For Blake it was creative mind.

In the Fourth Way ‘imagination’ refers to unintentional, automatic thinking, circling thoughts. Associative and automatic thinking can be self-tormenting. That is why techniques like mindfulness can be used to relieve suffering. In common parlance, ‘cheer up, it may never happen.’

I notice when driving that minor accidents are frequently avoided by my feet and hands on the controls without their actions having passed through consciousness until afterwards. Some things don’t need to be conscious.

30. John Harmer - October 21, 2021

#29 44thway says “For some it represents the abstract, Platonic realm of Forms, which, if you believe that Plato was right (which is not universally accepted) is the ultimate reality.”

Popper writes a lively and amusing analysis of Plato, in his Open Society, where he also takes a swipe at Hegel, another purveyor of nonsense.

31. 44thWay - October 22, 2021

#30. John Harmer

The School of Economic Science, an indirect offshoot of Ouspensky’s group, is Platonist mixed with Vedanta. I think any manifestation of the Fourth Way (and allied trades) needs to be clear about its philosophical underpinnings. This is irrespective of whether Gurdjieff was a more authentic rascal than Robert Earl Burton.

The Fourth Way teaches that by correct efforts one may accumulate finer substances and eventually create a ‘higher being body’ or soul. Whether such finer substances exist is key to whether there is any practical difference between healing and transformation (understood as distinct processes in the six-processes model of the law of three).

This is the underlying point of my question to Robert Patterson at #25 above.

32. 44thWay - October 22, 2021

#28 ton2u

Thank you for the reference to the Corbin paper on the Imaginal world.

From Corbin, p.5: “This fully objective and real world with equivalents for everything existing in the sensible world without being perceptible by the senses is designated as the eighth clime.”

In other words, Corbin is a Platonist, giving objective reality to worlds of the senses, of intellect, and of ‘the forms of our thoughts and desires.’

33. ton2u - October 22, 2021

Corbin was a professor of islamic studies. His work involved study of hermeneutics and exegesis of Persian sufis and Neoplatonists… as an area of interest for him as a scholar, I assume his studies had an influence on his own perspective and philosophy. If you’re interested, look into his background yourself and decide on how you want to label him – if that’s your thing.

34. Associated Press - October 22, 2021

I thought this post from the archives might bear on recent discussion:

https://fellowshipoffriends.wordpress.com/2007/07/13/the-fellowship-of-friends-discussion-part-15/#comment-3391
FoF Blog page 15/July 16, 2007 at 11:32 pm
“a former student” states [with some minor editing]:

“. . .My position is that, if as it is presented to be ‘a system of objective knowledge,’ it is not an ideology.

If it is used to justify criminal activities (both in the objective and subjective, legal sense), then it is an ideology.

But this is one way to discuss triads, right action. The use of a thing is part of a triad. A thing, in and of itself, has no value; its use, the force it conducts, does.

Take a simple object, a wooden chair. To the senses it is one thing. Objectively it is a conductor of force. It can conduct one of three forces in six possible processes.

On page 75 chapter 4 of ‘The Theory of Celestial Influence’ Rodney Collin wrote…

‘We may summarize the processes thus:
(a) Sun: Earth: Planets: or Life: Matter: Form:
Incarnation, Growth, Multiplication, Elaboration.
(b) Sun: Planets: Earth: or Life: Form: Matter:
Decay, Disintegration, Destruction, Elimination.
(c) Earth: Sun: Planets: or Matter: Life: Form:
Transformation, Refinement, Purification, Digestion.
(d) Planets: Sun: Earth: or Form: Life: Matter:
Disease, Rebellion, Corruption, Crime.
(e) Earth: Planets: Sun: or Matter: Form: Life:
Adaptation, Invention, Healing, Renewal.
(f) Planets: Earth: Sun: or Form: Matter: Life:
Regeneration, Re-creation, Change of Nature, Art.
All phenomena on earth, known and unknown, belong to one or another of these six processes. For there are no others. And no others are possible.’

[a] The first process is the creation of the chair. energy[life]-matter form. Some energy from that of a skilled craftsman to a robot lathe cut and shapes, fits together the material-then it is a chair. It could have been a bookshelf, a coffee table, but we have a chair. What is usually missed by the normal mind is that this process is a descending octave, energy enters mass to create a form. This first process also includes multiplication, elaboration and growth. It is very important to reflect on this process and that it is a descending octave. we often mistake this process as an ascending octave. When this happens we literally don’t know up from down.

[b] In the second process time itself acts on the chair. This is decay, destruction, elimination. Life (energy)-form matter.
Shakespeare discusses this second process in Sonnet 64:
‘When I have seen by Time’s fell hand defaced
The rich proud cost of outworn buried age;
When sometime lofty towers I see down-razed
And brass eternal slave to mortal rage;
When I have seen the hungry ocean gain
Advantage on the kingdom of the shore,
And the firm soil win of the watery main,
Increasing store with loss and loss with store;
When I have seen such interchange of state,
Or state itself confounded to decay;’

[c] The third process is refinement, transformation, digestion. This process describes all that happens to the chair in terms of maintenance, cleaning, painting, restoration. [Earth: Sun: Planets: matter life(energy) form]

[d] The 4th process is Form: Life: Matter: [Planets: Sun: Earth:] Disease, Rebellion, Corruption, Crime.
How can a chair be criminal. Well if you can’t sit on it, it’s not a chair. So it can be a[s] simple as some ice or thumb tacks. Is the electric chair criminal, objectively, using it to kill? It is also when it retains the form of a chair but is not useable.

[e] In the 5th process: Earth: Planets: Sun: or Matter: Form: Life:
Adaptation, Invention, Healing, Renewal. We see something as simple as standing on a chair to change a lite bulb. All verity of specialized chairs, like wheel chairs that are part of healing, and the simple use of a chair for a primary purpose to sit and renew ones energies.

[f] The 6th process: Planets: Earth: Sun: or Form: Matter: Life:
Regeneration, Re-creation, Change of Nature, Art.
This process is similar to creation but the order is reversed. In this process form organizes matter to create life. The Mona Lisa is a great example. A couple of bucks worth of canvas, paint and wood yet through some magic it conveys some incredible energies of a higher order.

This is just a simple example of right thinking. Right thinking is thinking with scale and relativity. This means Octaves and triads. Right thinking leads to right action. This is an important part of both the teaching of the Buddha and the Tao, The I-Ching.

I believe that the system is an important tool in developing right thinking. However, it is also an instruction manual on developing individuality, consciousness, conscience and will.

How then can it be used to justify a criminal ideology. The model is when form destroys life and leaves matter. The form of the Fellowship destroy[s] object conscience and consciousness while claiming to develop them. This is crime in an objective sense.

The system is an object, call it a map. The value is in its use. The Fellowship of Friends did not invent the system, did not use it effectively, do not use it effectively and have added little of value. The system is still as it was, unchanged, available to do its intended work, which, as with all B influence, is to be there for magnetic center and one’s own inner development.

It is an interesting and unfortunate development that ‘the system’ designed, as was Buddha’s Teaching, to be as free of preconception as possible, is now considered a ‘loaded ideology’ because of the Fellowship of Friends. In the world wide community of those who have tried to follow the teachings of Gurdjieff and Ouspensky the Fellowship has become a joke, an object of horror and dismay. It[s] members considered gullible fools tricked by a charismatic fraud into devoting their precious magnetic centers to building his shrine, his temple to his divinity. That is the true purpose of Isis [Apollo, Renaissance, etc., as it has been named]. A temple and shrine to its divine goddess. If this blog helps to shed a little of the light of truth on this criminal perverted sexual predator, it is a good thing. Remember, Robert is already writing his own epithet, his followers are planning his elevation to the status of a divine messenger. Let the truth exist also.”

And, if I might add:
“There can be seven combinations of forces, one of them incomprehensible to the human mind. . .”
The Fourth Way
P. D. Ouspensky

35. Brought Up in Apollo - October 23, 2021

Does anyone have recommendations for therapists for the children brought up in the FOF?

36. Associated Press - October 25, 2021

191/35: Brought Up in Apollo
“Does anyone have recommendations for therapists for the children brought up in the FOF?”

Check out these resources:
Dr. Janja Lalich, Ph.D., (Chico):
International Authority on Cults and Coercion:
http://cultresearch.org/how-to-find-a-qualified-therapist/
About Dr. Janja Lalich, Ph.D.:
http://cultresearch.org/about/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janja_Lalich
There are books authored.

Dr. Margaret Singer, Ph.D., now deceased, for historic perspective:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Singer
Books authored and/or co-authored with Lalich.
Here is something to read immediately:
Margaret T. Singer Collection:
http://www.prem-rawat-bio.org/academic/singer.html

I hope this helps.

37. 44thWay - October 26, 2021

#33. ton2u:

Re Corbin: “…decide on how you want to label him – if that’s your thing.” Labels and words are shorthand for longer arguments and descriptions. While I grant that all labels fall short of the reality they attempt to point to, without them we should not be able to speak at all. In this case, whether someone is a Platonist or not is key to the whole underpinning of the rest of his or her thought and its connection or otherwise with reality. This of course is up for discussion.

#23. Robert Patterson

My feeling is that there is no reason to believe in the Gurdjieffian system. Although Ouspensky insisted on verification (and at times Gurdjieff also insisted that belief was neither required nor part of the Fourth Way system), the whole thing rests on the idea of creating a soul (and becoming “immortal at the scale of the solar system”), with no evidence presented to back this up. Fair enough if making personal efforts for a reasonable period of time leads to some kind of verification, but we have no examples of anyone who actually achieved this. We believe only on Robert Burton’s say-so, that Alex Horn became immortal (while other evidence suggests he was an extremely unpleasant person) and that Rodney Collin did, and Rodney Collin claimed the same for Ouspensky on no evidence other than a vision that he or someone else had while driving over London Bridge. Ouspensky himself told everyone to forget everything he had told them previously and to abandon the system. He couldn’t have said it plainer unless he’d said, ‘look, I messed up, the whole thing doesn’t work.’

See also https://holybooks.com/the-case-of-p-d-ouspensky/

38. Rich - October 26, 2021

37. 44th Way: Thanks for the link about Ouspensky’s secretary.

39. ton2u - October 27, 2021

44th Way @ 37

“…we should not be able to speak at all” – in some cases that may be for the best, you just might learn something…. but “we” are so fascinated with our thoughts it’s often impossible not to “speak” them…. and so this:

Mentally placing someone or some thing into a preconceived category does almost nothing, if anything, to increase understanding. What is facilely called “shorthand” I would say in many cases is limiting and habitually lazy. If you think you have a notion of “the whole underpinning” based on a concept implied by a word for a category, I suggest this is where understanding stops – needn’t go any further if you think you already know everything based on an idea in-formed by a pre-programmed pre-conception. You see, by placing someone or something in a readymade box, it’s really you boxing yourself in. To paraphrase an old familiar: If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear as it is, infinite. But you’ve closed yourself up, till you see all things through the narrow chinks of your cavern…. a cavern created by the accretion of notions, ideas, words and labels pasted over the infinite… not to single you out mr/ms 44th Way, each inhabits their own “reality tunnel” – some parts of which we may or may not share with others.

40. 44thWay - October 28, 2021

#39. ton2u

You are quite right, there is always a danger that words can be used to close off discussion and thought. There are indeed things that are beyond words, and the accuracy with which words point to the things they intend to specify is variable and often fuzzy. When we use words – and all words are labels – we do need to be aware that a given label may stop further thought or analysis. It is always an option to challenge the use of a given label, and ask, “what exactly do you mean by that?”

So, what I mean by Platonism is the belief that the perceptible world, the world of ordinary things and people, is somehow brought into being by an ideal world of Forms. That the approximation to a straight line that we draw with a ruler is the imperfect embodiment of the Idea of a straight line that exists in the world of Forms. Similarly with more abstract concepts such as Justice and Virtue.

In contrast to that, the modern view (which I hesitate to label ‘materialist,’ since the Fourth Way is strictly materialist, in that it believes in a whole raft of finer substances; or ‘rationalist,’ because alternative views can also be rational) is that existence precedes essence, that is, abstract concepts derive from generalisations of what we observe. We, humans, create the categories out of our experience, so experience comes first, concepts and categories afterwards. There is no world of Forms or ‘Imaginal’ world separate from and independent of human invention.

In thinking about how I came to believe a very large quantity of improbable things associated with the Fourth Way and the Fellowship, it went like this:

Neither believe nor disbelieve anything you hear tonight; verification is everything.

(Thus, my guard was down.)

Then, efforts to self-remember start to produce verifications (that a lot of what I do is done with minimal awareness, that I am tormented with unnecessary thoughts, that coming into the present can sometimes lead me to a sense of tranquility).

Then, the (entirely false) reasoning that says, well if all that is true (and no-one else ever pointed all that out to me before), the rest of the system must be true too, and the teacher must be a genuine teacher.

Leading to the suspension of disbelief and the acceptance of the latest utterance of the teacher, no matter how unsupported by any evidence whatsoever and no matter how distant from the commonly understood nature of reality.

Gurdjieff explained all this very clearly with his sparrows painted as canaries. Except that in the Fourth Way the paint doesn’t wash off until you leave.

41. ton2u - October 29, 2021

I’m well aware of a dictionary definition for ‘Platonism’ – but what’s really going on here? You’ve framed your remarks in answer to your own question – you write:

“It is always an option to challenge the use of a given label, and ask, ‘what exactly do you mean by that?’”

Then you proceed to answer your own question with your ‘wiki’ definition. It’s a bit of misdirection to address this to me – maybe I need not get in the middle of a conversation you’re having with yourself? Nevertheless, since part of your post is addressed to ‘me’ a few comments follow.

I’ll suggest again, that by throwing someone or something into a preconceived category-bucket, you avoid the content, context, detail, and nuanced richness… in other words, because of the ‘narrow chinks of your cavern’ you don’t fully ‘grok’ what’s presented, what’s present before your ‘very eyes.’ Partly this is due to “programming” – implanted constructs influencing perception and interpretations of ‘reality,’ and partly it’s a product of simple mental ‘laziness’ – you needn’t bother to look deeper than your own pre-conceived notions. But that’s your prerogative, you will do what you like and what you’ve grown accustomed to – i.e. your habits of mind.

I think we agree that there is ‘something’ beyond the words and labels, a ’something’ more ‘substantial’ which words can only point toward. But you, an aspiring writer and self-publisher, are interested in filling space with words and labels… that appears to be ‘your thing.’ Me, I’m not so interested in the labeling and word production. To borrow a metaphor, you seem to be interested in focusing on the ‘finger pointing to moon’ – I’d be more interested in inhabiting a place, a ‘vantage point’ of direct wordless perception of the moon, no descriptors needed. A German word comes to mind – ‘dasien’ – a state of simple ‘being’ without words… the 5 cats and 2 dogs I live with are good teachers in this regard.

‘Blogging,’ this filling of space with words is probably best left to someone like you, aspiring wordsmith – I pretty quickly grow weary of the game of dog chasing tail. In particular, although this site can be, and happens to be many things, IMO it’s main purpose is exposing the FOF and Burton, so, may I suggest that it’s probably best not to get too far into the weeds with your philosophy 101 lessons.

42. ton2u - October 29, 2021

correction: “sein” – be

43. Man Number Zero - October 29, 2021

“‘Blogging,’ this filling of space with words is probably best left to someone like you, aspiring wordsmith – I pretty quickly grow weary of the game of dog chasing tail.” …. writes ton2u, after filling six paragraphs with patronizing guff.

44. ton2u - October 29, 2021

I get a little carried away at times, apologies for that…. you see how this gets tiresome.

45. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - October 29, 2021
46. Rich - October 29, 2021

45. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg:
thanks for the link. The podcaster spoke of
additional podcast on FOF, but I failed to
find them.

47. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - October 29, 2021

#46 Rich

https://robertearlburton.blogspot.com/

Home page of the blogspot brings you to the first four episodes of Jennings Brown’s 6 episode ‘Revelations’ podcast. Two more to come.

48. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - October 29, 2021
49. Insider - October 29, 2021

46. Rich

Or just go to Spotify and search for “Revelations.”

50. Rich - October 29, 2021

45. The link ran continuous through the 4 podcast,
based on time. In a few days we’ll have the last
2.

51. WhaleRider - October 31, 2021

FOFblogmonitor:
Can you please add the links to Jennings’ awesome podcast to the blog header?

A BIG THANK YOU to all who participated.

I really enjoyed how Jennings portrayed his observations with the foreknowledge of what he was getting into, unlike the rest of us, that is, before the blinding cognitive dissonance sets in.

52. Fee fi fo fum - October 31, 2021

The Revelations podcast by Jennings Brown, on Spotify, is really well done. Jennings is an excellent narrator who must have sifted through enormous amounts of materials from his interviews. It’s amazing that Jennings got repeated access to Apollo and interviewed a few current, long-time members. Some of them have been in the FF for over 40 years. Very sad to hear them justify and rationalize REB’s behavior and justify why they’re still in the FF. People sure hate admitting they’ve been duped for such a long time. It was equally impressive that Jennings was able to interview some of the ex-members who were in key positions who saw and knew what was happening with REB’s sexual activities or knew the financial goings-on. As we know, the FF’s culture of fear and punishment prevented many members from speaking out freely. Speak your mind, and you get booted out. REB encouraged FF members to cut themselves off from their “life” family and friends. By doing that, leaving the FF often meant having little, or no, support group to turn to when one left the FF. It was one of many of REB/FF’s mind-controlling ploys. The podcast focuses on REB’s sexual abuse of young heterosexual men. Let’s not forget the financial pressure we were under, as FF members. Jennings refers to the monthly payments as “tithes.” It should be made clear that the FF’s monthly teaching payments were 10% of one’s gross income, and special donations became a regular, monthly requirement, along with periodic, sizable extra-special donations. The FF made many members financially stretched and stressed on a constant, monthly basis.

53. Insider - November 1, 2021

I would guess that the Fellowship let Jennings into the compound in order to preempt any negative interviews and information that he was sure to encounter, or had already encountered, from the blogs, ex-members, etc. So, as he mentions, they love-bombed him, took him to a Shakespeare play at the Theatron, invited him to an evening reception somewhere in the Galleria gardens, even arranged a flight over Apollo with Peter Morrow. Who wouldn’t be impressed, and speak only in glowing terms, after such a welcome?

But, from the Fellowship point of view, Jennings turned out to be a Trojan Horse. He was on a mission which some suspected, but chose to ignore, and, due to a combination of naivety and vanity, the Fellowship gave him just what he was looking for.

There must be quite a number of really pissed off people right now, not the least of whom is Robert Burton. I don’t think Jennings will be invited to another reception anytime soon!

54. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 2, 2021

Jennings Brown creator of the 6 part Revelations podcast on Spotify
copied and pasted here from his twitter account @tjenningsbrown
·
Oct 4
5/I’ve seen and heard strange and harrowing things while reporting this. I was there for the final black-tie dinner before the “end of the world.” I watched them perform Shakespeare (one of the angels), interviewed members who participated in sex rituals. It’s all in this series
6/I was asked to join the Fellowship multiple times. Often I couldn’t help but be entranced by the bizarre, extraordinary, intoxicating world they built. But ultimately it became clear all their extravagance is a veil for exploitation and cruelty. No telling how many were harmed.

Well done Jennings and thanks, “a veil for exploitation and cruelty” is exactly what it is.

55. Elena - November 2, 2021

Hi, I would like to rejoin this site. I don’t know if my previous question reached you. Enough time has passed to make a few less mistakes.

56. amesgilbert - November 2, 2021

44th Way (#13),
I’m one of the ones that keeps repeating Burton’s quote about conscience, because I feel it is central to the debate.

“Conscience is just a collection of I’s. Anyone accumulating too much should leave the school”.

I posted about how this phrase first came to my attention, in 1994, here:
https://tinyurl.com/r94e2n5a
(page 50, post #59)

57. amesgilbert - November 2, 2021

Insider (#53),
This is pure speculation on my part, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there are once more the two categories of followers, those ‘in the know’ and the others, the majority (of which I was one in my day), who try as hard as possible to follow the ‘do not gossip’ exercise, change the subject if the conversation veers towards the uncomfortable, and avoid consorting with ‘dangerous people’ who might upset one’s worldview. The same sort of people who would take Girard Haven’s advice to avoid this blog seriously to heart, and treat it as an order from on high.

Those ‘in the know’ are indeed probably temporarily pissed off, but that will soon pass, since the majority aren’t going to ask awkward questions now or ever. As for Burton, I wouldn’t be surprised if he has no idea; I mean, who is going to dare tell him without taking the risk of implicating themselves? It would mean that the ‘angels’ have fallen down on their job by neglecting to inform him first, and also failed to warn him in advance, or that he was unable to correctly recognize those license plates they surely must have arranged for him to interpret. Who would want to open that can of worms?

On the other hand…
It is certainly possible that someone lusting for more power or advantage might snitch on the present followers who agreed to be interviewed. There were plenty of snitches jostling for attention in my day, and I’m sure there are plenty still…

Elena - November 2, 2021

Conscience is an aspect of being, so it is the perfect way to disempower people in a cult. No one knows who they are or what they stand for, after letting go of the little conscious they have.

Thanks for sharing that Ames, that is a perfect cult quote.

58. amesgilbert - November 2, 2021

‘Revelations’ Part V is really going into the nitty–gritty of Burton’s sexual predations. It must have been very difficult to for the men Burton raped to overcome their shame and testify, even after many years. I am thankful for their honesty and their courage.

Not to mention the financial shenanigans, making it quite clear to the meanest intelligence that the central purpose of the Fellowship of Friends organization was and is the satisfaction of Burton’s out–of–control desires and whims, NOT the spiritual advancement or welfare of his followers. Whalerider, above, thanks all those who participated in this podcast, but in my opinion Charles R. is one of the real heroes so far in the series. He has taken the risk to authoritatively laid bare the whole scheme of inurement *, the way that the entire organization was and is the personal plaything of Robert Earl Burton, the God–Emperor of Oregon House.

I personally never even knew about even the existence of the ‘Canons’ until after I had left, and I had no idea that they were invented specifically to throw the IRS off the scent.

I myself only read the Samuel Sanders letter after Richard Buzbee’s letter made the rounds; someone sent it to me anonymously. I had known of the existence per se of the letter, but when I asked Colin Lambert about it, he told me it was just a totally negative screed and it was in my best interest to not pursue the matter, and I believed him. In actual fact, of course, Samuel’s motivations were noble and principled and the letter was strictly to the point, explaining the criminality of the organization both financial and spiritual, and specifically emphasizing the harm to those raped by Burton. Samuel is one of the few who comes out of this sorry saga looking good.
_________________________________________

* For those interested, here is what ‘inurement’ means in the context of a non–profit organization, such as the Fellowship of Friends. Thanks to the website nonprofitexpert.com
https://tinyurl.com/fs2ervyw

“The organization must not be organized or operated for the benefit of private interests, and no part of a section 501(c)(3) organization’s net earnings may inure to the benefit of any private shareholder or individual.”

What is private benefit?
Private benefit occurs when an individual or organization receives a benefit—monetary or nonmonetary—from a 501(c)(3) organization. A tax-exempt organization that provides a substantial amount of private benefit may risk losing its tax-exempt status. (This does not include paying reasonable salaries or providing services to individuals as part of an organization’s exempt–function activities.)

What is inurement?
Inurement occurs when an “insider” of an exempt organization receives any of an organization’s net income or inappropriately uses any of its assets for personal gain. An insider is a person who has a personal and private interest in the activities of an organization. Examples are officers, directors, and key employees. Any amount of inurement, no matter how small, can jeopardize an organization’s tax-exempt status. (This does not include paying reasonable salaries or providing services to individuals as part of an organization’s exempt–function activities.)

What is the difference between private benefit and inurement
Inurement is a subset of private benefit and deals specifically with insiders, while private benefit can be to both insiders and outsiders. Both terms describe situations in which an exempt organization’s income or assets are inappropriately diverted for private gain rather than used for a public purpose.
_________________________________________

Can there be any reasonable doubt that the main purpose of the Fellowship of Friends is to benefit Robert Earl Burton in all ways, and that the spiritual claims in the Fellowship Canons, and that the advertisements to procure fresh recruits, are just a cover for that purpose? And that the claims of any followers that it is otherwise, are pure self–delusion, cognitive dissonance exemplified?

59. Rich - November 2, 2021

I don’t want to sub to spotify. Could someone please
give a link to the full six podcast?

Elena - November 2, 2021
60. Elena - November 2, 2021
61. Jennings - November 2, 2021

Hi, Jennings here. I’ve been thinking about Insider’s comment about people in the Fellowship seeing me as a Trojan Horse. I wanted to address this, for anyone who helped me report this story and now feels disappointed with how it turned out. When I initially reached out to the Fellowship, I was interested in profiling a unique spiritual community with a rich and complicated history. There had not been much reporting on the organization aside from coverage about the winery and abuse allegations. I knew there had to be more to the story, but I had no idea how that story was going to turn out. I wanted to see what the Fellowship is like in its current form and understand the perspective of students who are still involved. I tried to give members the space to share what the Fellowship means to them. I met many wonderful and kind members while reporting this. Many of them gave me a lot of their time, and welcomed me into their homes and to Apollo events—and for that I am grateful. Thanks to them I was able to get a more complete portrait of the Fellowship, and showcase some of its beauty, in addition to the darker aspect. As one of the members told me in an interview: “The Fellowship, it’s a hologram. You look at it this way and it looks miraculous. You look at it this way and it’s a horror…let’s say a Fellini movie.” I became fascinated by that duality. And the more time I spent exploring that duality, the more it became clear that many people were hurt and exploited. As a journalist, I had an obligation to report on that harm and speak truth to power.

If any current or former members would ever like to connect, you’re welcome to email me at jenningsbrown@protonmail.com. I’d love to hear your perspective or talk about anything you think I missed.

62. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 2, 2021

#59 Rich

Only 5 episodes posted so far, the 6th goes up this Sunday. You can play them from the homepage at

https://robertearlburton.blogspot.com/

They are linked in the left hand margin if you scroll down a bit.

63. Insider - November 2, 2021

61. Jennings

Just to clarify my comment in #53 above. I was not implying that Jennings intentionally planned to be a “Trojan Horse,” but only speculating that he might well be perceived in that way by certain FF members who were tasked with making him fall in love with the FF, deflecting the “horror” side, and even getting Jennings to consider joining. The FF strategy was not entirely lacking in success. We all love love.

I understand that Jennings may have had little idea of the eventual story line (or at least the most important ones) at the times he visited Apollo, and therefore was fairly innocently and honestly gathering information from all sides.

If I came across sounding like I was accusing Jennings of something nefarious, I do apologize.

64. Elena - November 3, 2021

Hi Jennings,
It’s a strange time for me to rejoin this blog after fifteen years, glad that you’re putting a spotlight on the cult. Maybe you’d be interested in understanding that all cults show great progress in some area so that the people inside can justify what they are doing somehow. If you look into jonestown the agricultural aspect of it was no less beautiful than Robert’s gardens but beneath the flowers are the thorns. Another aspect you might be interested in, is that cults are not too different to culture. The things that move people inside cults are the same as those that move people in society and academies, the military and the government in itself, function like any other cult but manipulate different aspects of the individual. Here you have a wonderful group of people that have lived through this and understand it pretty well.

65. amesgilbert - November 3, 2021

“If there was an egregious legal violation, I’d want to hear about it”, quote from ‘Revelations’ part V, by Greg Holman, the self–described ‘sheriff of the Fellowship of Friends’.

Hmm, ‘sheriff’ seems the wrong word. Rather, in this instance, he would be more the driver of the getaway car after the heist, on the lookout for trouble from The Law or some foolhardy member of the public at large.
Actually, I am reminded of the structure of a Mafia ‘family, and how Holman would fit the part of “Consigliere” much more closely. He seems to be the adjunct and most important power possessor, more a partner of the Boss than an underling, but nevertheless subservient. Such a job would be more on the lines of ‘heading off trouble at the pass’ than maintaining some relatively objective rule of law. In fact, since there is no law at all in the Fellowship fantasy, just the latest whim of the Boss, he is the complete opposite of what I would describe as a sheriff.

Anyway, in descending order, below the Boss would be the Underbosses, then the Caporegimes (capos), then the Soldiers, and finally the Associates. Obviously Dorian would be the Underboss, Sasha and certain (but not all) Board Members, and maybe Girard, would be equivalent to the Caporegimes, the Soldiers would be the “made” men and women who have proved their absolute loyalty over the years, people like Linda and the late Frances Thompson, who are the enforcers and also willing to ‘take one for the team’, and the rest of the flock would be equivalent to Associates, hoping to be noticed, hoping to be ‘made’.

And there is even the ‘no gossip exercise’, equivalent to the Mafia ‘omerta’, the code of silence!

One critical difference: the Boss of the Fellowship of Friends is insane. A Mafia Boss would have been quietly pushed aside or eliminated before this stage.

66. amesgilbert - November 3, 2021

As many have pointed out before, it is not illegal to invent a religion, it is not illegal to have sexual rituals be part of that religion, it is not illegal for ministers to have sex with their followers—if they are over the age of consent. But, it is illegal to provide the religious leader with rewards and benefits beyond a ‘reasonable salary’. The president of the Fellowship of Friends and the whole organization, as a registered non–profit, are supposed to be conducting business for the greater public good, in return for which, the FoF is able to claim various tax exemptions (in other words, subsidies from said public), and individual followers of Burton’s religion are able to claim tax benefits in respect to their financial contributions. It is a fact that the members of the Board of Directors over the years have allowed egregious legal violations and gotten away with the continual dereliction of their legal duties; this no doubt due to the interventions of the eighty–one angels. Or an enormous amount of luck. Or lack of staff or real interest from the IRS, take your pick.

No, Sam Sanders “went to the Sheriff” and was rebuffed, and excommunicated for pointing out the truth. Afterwards, he was ridiculed as a liar, and grossly slandered.

The “Sheriff” of the time was not an impartial officer of the law, he (and his successor, Holman) are extreme partisans under the complete control of Robert Earl Burton. I’m sure that the FoF is very careful nowadays to strictly adhere to the letter of the law—as far as is possible, considering Burton’s insatiable demands. I’m sure that the FoF has stopped buying fake passports, and I can certainly believe that terms of ‘religious visas’, if any are awarded nowadays, are closely monitored. And if Mr Holman says that trips from Europe are no longer funded by the FoF directly itself, I can believe him. But, I’d be remiss to consider the possibility that now it is the local groups in various countries that find the funds for the tickets and sponsor suitable applicants that meet certain, ‘ahem’, criteria (albeit in metric units).

Back in my day, it was already exceedingly obvious that “going to the Sheriff” was futile. The likes of Girard? Linda? Guinevere? Colin? Ethan? Gimme a break! These honchos seriously expected and their successors still expect the laity to believe that they would actually act on complaints, would buck Burton’s will? That they would put their positions and sinecures in jeopardy to achieve justice? It was obvious then and obvious now: Burton surrounds himself by carefully selected “yes men” and “yes women”, layers deep, to protect and promote his world view and maintain the fantasy. Any others, any with the slightest possibility of serious disagreement with his POV and his wishes, are more than unwelcome.
Hey, there are not even any equivalents in Burton’s realm to the Court Jesters of medieval courts, those who were permitted to tell truth to power under the guise of comedy, and thereby let off steam.

67. amesgilbert - November 3, 2021

Jennings Brown said, “I met many wonderful and kind members while reporting this. Many of them gave me a lot of their time, and welcomed me into their homes…”
Yes, that is why I stayed so long—so long, and way too long. The many interesting and kind and generous people, from all walks of life and from all over the world. In several episodes of ‘Revelations’, Jennings mentions the allurements of the Fellowship, some of them on the personal level, some on the external level, and how he responded to those attractions. Of course, we now know he resisted, but I got the feeling that he does understand it might have been more difficult in certain other circumstances. For example, if he had been someone who stumbled on the Fellowship when he was depressed and desperate for answers and meaning, or someone fed up with a lifetime of disappointing friendships and endless shallow conversations, or the hypocrisy of political and religious leaders and their evident lack of any substance, or the sad state of the world in general.

Later on, when doubts did arise, it was these same gentle and kind people who soothed my suspicions and supplied thoughtful answers and insights. Surely all these good folks could not be wrong, it must be some fault of my own, it was literally my own weaknesses that were making room for doubt, and certainly ‘I was not working hard enough on myself’. Moreover, if I indulged these doubts, or let them grow, then I was spurning my incredible good luck and practically spitting in the faces of the gods.

Inside the bubble of the Fellowship, it is like a self–licking ice–cream cone. There is a need for continual reinforcement of the fantasy, and a group urge to repair any cracks in the fantasy. Whenever some member weakens, others who are stronger, who are in a better state, who understand more, who see further, cluster around to provide support. After the recovery, it may be that member’s role to provide support to the formerly strong when they in turn have doubts. This is all done with the utmost kindness and concern, with the best intentions, but it is groupthink nevertheless.
Just like the initial ‘love bombing’ Jennings experienced. In my opinion, this is an archetypical example of the groupthink; in this case, the classic “fresh newbie reaction” performed (and ironically—totally unconsciously and automatically) by the group that is clustering around in the attempt to absorb the latest potential member into the blob. I am not being cynical here, just trying to describe what happened to me, to so many others, and what I infer was happening to Jennings.

One important aspect of this is that it is provisional/conditional. Truly, the organization should be called, “The Fellowship of Conditional Friends”, the main condition being that one is in good standing with Burton. By and large, when that condition is not met, the ‘friendship’ evaporates like the dew by mid–morning. Not in all cases, I know, but most. And not that it doesn’t hurt those that stay as much as those that are shunned, but this is just one more ‘payment’ in an endless line of payments, just another sacrifice that will eventually be counted on the positive side of the ledger, just another tribute demanded by the God–Emperor.

My best guess is that right now, amongst ‘those in the know’, there is some groupthink going on in an attempt to repair their particular corner of the fantasy. There may be some ‘blame cannons’ firing in various directions, there may be some decisions about how to deal with any possible fallout should the laity become overly concerned, there may be some ideas about how to prevent a repetition of this episode, and so on. But, I honestly doubt there will be any suggestions along the lines of, “This fellow has exposed some significant, central weaknesses in our organization that we should have acknowledged and acted on years and decades ago, we should carefully examine this and follow the truth wherever it may lead, and face up to the consequences, including the probability of sanctioning Robert Earl Burton and formally dismantling the group as it presently stands”.

68. Fee fi fo fum - November 3, 2021

Although REB’s sexual exploitation and abuse of young, heterosexual men may be the most egregious of the damage done to members, everyone in the FF was impacted in many ways, big and small.

There was an unspoken class structure, or perhaps more accurately, caste structure, where “caste” means that a person is not able to change their social position for the better. Remember how “alchemy” and “centers of gravity” immediately relegated a person to the upper or lower echelons? The FF was like any other society, where some of its dynamics were hurtful and even destructive.

There was also the constant pressure to make monthly teaching payments and special donations. These monthly payments far exceeded 10% of one’s gross income. In addition, the REB’s addiction and FF’s predilection for beautiful things and the good life meant that many members went into debt or overspent on their credit cards. For those members who are now in their older middle aged years with little or no savings, living around Oregon House: what kind of safety net do such individuals have, especially if they’ve cut themselves off from their family and close friends?

But the deepest damage may have been the mind control, and the trauma that it caused so many of us. Why did it take so long for so many of us to leave the FF? And once leaving the FF, it took a long time to process the FF’s effects on us. We were encouraged to incorporate the FF as a 24/7 way of life. It permeated everything that we did and thought and felt.

69. 44thWay - November 4, 2021

#68 Fe fi fo fum

“For those members who are now in their older middle aged years with little or no savings, living around Oregon House: what kind of safety net do such individuals have, especially if they’ve cut themselves off from their family and close friends?”

This is part of the ‘bad householder’ of FoF. Also that workers on ‘salary’ did not have medical insurance supplied by their employer. Also that when La Cucina burned down we were asked to donate rather than the FoF simply claiming on buildings insurance (did they have any?). So many things didn’t make sense, but somehow when I was a member I didn’t understand that these lapses, which I did notice, were central rather than peripheral. Ouspensky said that one cannot even start in the Work unless one is in good householder.

70. 44thWay - November 4, 2021

Oh, I forgot. ‘Schools don’t make sense’ (TM)

71. Fee fi fo fum - November 4, 2021

#69 44thWay

“This is part of the ‘bad householder’ of FoF.” You probably did not mean ‘bad householder’ to be a euphemism. How about this: FF members were/are taken advantage of, big time. “Third line work” on the property (Apollo)? Free labor. Complaining about the long hours and rock-bottom pay? That’s “expressing negativity.” Suck it up and “Do more first line work.” It’s endless. There was always a “work word” or “photograph” that was an effective put-down or shut-down of one’s mind and emotions. We basically allowed our sense of self to be snuffed out. In all my years as a FF member, I don’t remember hearing about self-respect (no doubt, because we “machines” did not have a so-called “self.”)

We stumbled into and joined the FF — with its illusions and superficial shows of refinement, beauty, seeming awareness (really? awareness of what?) and became prisoners.

When I listened to the Revelations podcast and heard some of the current members speak (most of whom I knew from when I was in the FF), it pained me to hear them make excuses for the enormous, godawful stuff that has gone on, and still goes on, with REB and the FF. Some of them have been in the FF for over 40 years, and they’ve known about some of the worst that REB does and some of the absolute stupidity of his predictions. So they remain in. That’s their loss and waste of time. But some of the individuals that Jennings interviewed are/were either in positions of authority or were “influencers” (RIP, Peter). So the damage done is not limited to themselves, but is extended to others. We can all think of a few individuals, in the FF, who had tragic outcomes.

72. 44thWay - November 5, 2021

Predictions: not merely wrong, but evidence of intellectual laziness. It’s not merely that California didn’t fall into the sea on more than one occasion, it’s that it is never going to. The tectonic plates along the San Andreas fault slide in relation to one another rather than one slipping under the other. So although an earthquake is inevitable (either a big one or a series of lesser ones), there is no reason to think that California will descend into the ocean. That is, unless Influence C, who are normally limited to encouraging us to see messages in licence plates, are suddenly and inexplicably able to force huge land masses under water, totally against the known properties of the Earth’s crust.

I was tempted to take bets on the prophecy not happening in my last meeting in the London Centre, just before the date of the prediction, and I rather regret now that I didn’t. It would have ‘created memory.’

73. Elena - November 5, 2021

Has anyone else verified that the military and corporations, function much like cults?

74. Rich - November 5, 2021

I left FOF in ’80. I think the first
prediction of CA falling happened.
Anyone remember the first bob’s
guess?

75. Insider - November 5, 2021

74. Rich
You left the Fellowship over 40 years ago. What are some of your memories of the FF in the 70s?

76. Golden Veil - November 6, 2021

Fee fi fo fum: Thank you for your posts. I hope that Jennings Brown got to interview you. You’re so articulate – in your November 3rd and 4th posts – about what being in the cult was like. I am looking forward to the final episode of the wonderful Revelations podcast. “Over produced” ? Somewhat. But it’s artful and theatrical form is actually perfect to express its Fellowship of Friends subject. I’m amazed at how thorough a researcher Jennings Brown is. What a journey it must have been for him. He even, you could say, risked his life to “get the story.” Thank you, Jennings Brown!

77. WhaleRider - November 6, 2021

Introducing Mystify -a new lofty fragrance from Robert Burton and the Fellowship of Friends.

Are you searching for something that makes you feel…oh, so so special?

Plagued by cognitive dissonance and the disconnect between actions and ideals?

Want to feel part of the inner circle of mostly white, elderly men and a few remaining women who have relinquished every scrap of their integrity and self-esteem?

Tired of drenching yourself with Givenchy but still need to cover up those pesky body odors emanating from your ugly lower self?

Then Mystify is the right fragrance for you!

Intentionally designed for young men in desperate circumstances, but discreetly used by designing women to avoid embarrassment, too!

Robert Burton and the Fellowship of Friends have spent decades refining and perfecting their formula of borrowing from others and imitating success to produce a golden, ethereal, and perfumed mirage that will overwhelm your common sense and propel you and the others you recruit into a state of unsustainable ecstasy…just a few squirts of this precious juice will leave you and Robert Burton groveling on your knees, begging the Absolute for more…!

With notes of musty antique murkiness and vague references to royalty, mixed with aromas of sweat, toil, camel dung, and furry canine servitude, built upon a baseline fear of disintegration, spiced with threats of abandonment, and expertly combined with unverifiable promises of immortality, Mystify will raise your consciousness to a new level of anxious, judgmental, hyper-vigilance that will separate you from your money, the stinky masses, and everyone else meaningful in your life.

Mystify can help you ignore your past, and live only in the moment, shamelessly, with only a lingering concern for the apocalyptical future…that’s how you, too, like Burton, can feel above the law!

In fact, with Mystify, soon you’ll be accepting, condoning, and even performing behaviors that you never imagined possible in your wildest dreams, far beyond the mundane boundaries of morality!

Yes, in a few short years, you won’t even recognize the person you’ve become!

You’ll be MYSTIFIED!!

78. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 6, 2021

Has anyone been able to find part VI of Jennings Brown’s Revelations podcast on the Fellowship of Friends, due to begin airing today?

79. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 6, 2021

oops, it’s due tomorrow, just realized sorry guys. Dang clocks!

80. Tim Campion - November 6, 2021

Typically, it posts Sunday at 12:01 a.m. local time. I don’t know if the change to Standard Time tomorrow morning will affect the schedule. I’ll try to post the link to the REB blog as soon as it’s available.

81. Rich - November 6, 2021

75.Insider: Pretty much the same as later,
heavy payments, no gossip, participation
in events, uncle bob still talked to a sizable
crowd, 44 angels, C influence, FOF is the
only 4th way, “life people & work people”
bob’s naming of the next FOF conscious
being, etc.

82. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 7, 2021

I will not turn my clocks back, I will then be living one hour in the future. I greet you, people of the past. Your ways are quaint.

83. ton2u - November 7, 2021

82 Genius!

84. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 7, 2021

“Atlas spelled backwards is salt”

from
50 years Talking to Angels by, Trebor Notrub

Revelations podcast Act VI on Spotify
Search, Revelations to find it.

85. Joey Virgo - November 7, 2021

Jennings Brown’s Act VI Revelations Podcast just been published. https://open.spotify.com/show/2bJD2GgwlPxF2UFVS1h84c

86. Nevasayneva - November 7, 2021

So after the Jennings Brown podcast and SFgate article, what next?
Just back to business as usual at FOF?

87. amesgilbert - November 7, 2021

Atlas spelled backwards is salt

Yes, another glistening pearl of wisdom from the God–Emperor of Oregon House, Robert Earl Burton.

This explains why the parrot was exiled; it was making way more sense, and people were beginning to notice.

Nevertheless, some in the laity probably tried their best to square the hole. Once again, how to bring meaning to drivel? Maybe a few sprained their brains working with Burton’s esoteric insight, starting from first principles, and days later, having run out of headache pills, gave up the intellectual struggle and joined the rest of the followers in their faith that it did make sense on some higher plane. And that with efforts! more efforts! the angels might lead them to actual understanding—in their next lifetime.

88. Fee fi fo fum - November 7, 2021

I listened to Revelations’ Act VI, and thought Jennings Brown’s summations were excellent.

In the early part of Act VI, Jennings’ use of contrast of life vs the FF was effective. For example, he mentions his personal, daily experience in NYC of the horrific early months of the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown (e.g., bicycling through Brooklyn and other boroughs of NYC, and seeing the freezer trucks with dead bodies); NYC had tens of thousands of people die of Covid-19. (My guess is that Yuba County in CA had comparatively few Covid-19-related deaths in 2020, making Covid-19 seem somewhat unreal.)

He contrasts his daily NYC experiences with his subsequent, final visit to Apollo and environs (e.g., he sees students wearing bathing suits on their way to a nearby pond; he’s given a plate of farm-fresh food to eat), conveying the impression of FF members’ isolation (literal and figurative). (That must have been a rather mind-bending contrast to Jennings.)

We anticipate a conclusion that he’s going to dive right in to this seemingly idyllic world of 44-conscious-beings-daily-card-quotations, the camels and artisanal cheeses and cultural aspirants performing at the Theatron. He does not. He doesn’t join the FF. He doesn’t fall for the sham.

I liked how he liked, and yet saw through, the FF’s pretty niceties, the seductive way of life that shines with superficial refinement and un-negativity. He concludes by reiterating the abuse that underlies it: the sexual, financial, and stripping-of-one’s-agency abuse.

A major asset of the podcast was in the interviews from “both sides of the aisle” (members, as well as ex-members). Equally important was the cogent narration.

For those people who were in the FF and left and reclaimed their lives – both inner and outer lives – this podcast probably served as a good validation of the drek that we, who left, knew we’d experienced. When someone sees what ex-members have experienced, without having been a member himself, it gives a feeling of, “Yes.”

As for the children of FF members who have grown up under the FF’s influence, some of whom are joining the FF — well, there’s nothing like more lives being wasted. Youth has the illusion of endless time. It’s an illusion. Watch your wallet, and young men: watch more than your wallet.

89. Insider - November 7, 2021

Act VI. Quintessential meaningless bullshit from Dorian Matei. Always speaking in riddles, always vague, always creating an air of mystery.

Here he tries to make people believe that he has undergone some incredible, mystical, evolutionary transformation. He wants people not to understand him, because the lack of comprehension means that the average Fellowship follower has simply not made sufficient efforts to be able to relate to Dorian.

So here’s Dorian in his own words:

“It’s very intense. When the physical body is exhausted, and you are required to work at a very high level, something kind of breaks inside, and new capacities can be accessed.”

“This is the strength of Apollo that you have the chance to erase everything you think about yourself, become nothing, and then see what emerges. It’s like a death.”

For those who think that Dorian was putting on this act for Jennings, not at all. Dorian has been working on this schtick for many years.

90. Associated Press - November 7, 2021

robot real burden

Phonetically similar first and last.
Anagram of the middle.
Now that is see influence.
And, the law of three in action.
Number of letters indicate:
man number four, five, or six.
That is genius!

91. amesgilbert - November 7, 2021

Whalerider (#77), good work, and I think you’ve hit on yet another possible reason why the parrot* was banished. Most birds, including parrots, don’t have a sense of smell (notable exceptions being vultures and other carrion eaters, of course). Thus, this sagacious and worthy parrot was not susceptible to “Mystify”, let alone Burton’s favorite cover-up, Givenchy.

And, as is well known amongst aficionados of the order Psittaciformes, parrots are amongst the most truthful and straightforward of birds, and faithfully record the common sounds they hear in their day to day lives. In part V, Jennings Brown has revealed that the words of the exiled parrot were in fact, “OMIGOD!!!!!” at the top of its voice, which lends credence to my theory that these words were spoken many times a day, most likely by Burton’s victims, and were repeated in due course in his new home.

I wouldn’t be at all surprised to learn that his former handlers tried every trick in the book to get the parrot to choose something less revealing, including waterboarding it with a bucket of pure “Mystify”, but this noble parrot could not be deviated from the truth.

I have to assume that at some point, Burton consciously lost his temper, saying something along the lines of “Will no–one rid me of this troublesome parrot?”, or rather, random noises that Dorian–and–his–iPad interpreted to mean the equivalent. If so, I would surmise that someone felt pity, and, before some ruthless flunky seeking Burton’s approval could act on these implied instructions and apply the final sanction to the honest avian, removed the imperiled bird to safety, and established it in new lodgings.

*Wikipedia tells us that parrots, also known as psittacines, are birds of the roughly 398 species in 92 genera comprising the order Psittaciformes, found mostly in tropical and subtropical regions. The order is subdivided into three superfamilies: the Psittacoidea, the Cacatuoidea, and the Strigopoidea.

• Unfortunately, Jennings does not tell us what particular species of parrot he encountered, but this particular individual deserves our unstinted admiration for telling truth to power, and for warning Jennings as best it could.

92. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 7, 2021

“Marcus”, recounts for Jennings a moment in a parking lot, with his conscious teacher, Trebor Notrub in the Revelation podcast series.

“The conscious energy in his eyes went from this controlled gentle state that I could handle to like a nuclear explosion and my perception subjective as it may be was if he had not controlled mechanical emotions, human emotions, he would have vaporized that parking attendant and the whole parking lot would have turned to dust………..I hope that helps you.” says Marcus in full expectation that a mere, “life person” with inferior human emotions will find this plausible.

He has inadvertently revealed what has long been suspected i.e. that Trebor is in fact Cyclops the first X-Man…….

“The first X-Man, Scott Summers possesses the mutant ability to fire powerful concussive blasts through his eyes that act as a portal to another dimension full of the force that makes up his optic blast.”

“Cyclops, (Greek: “Round Eye”) in Greek legend and literature, … In Hesiod the Cyclopes were three sons of Uranus and Gaea.”

Your story obviously comes straight out of Uranus Marcus and I suspect that you are in fact the outspoken parrot mentioned often in the podcast.

93. WhaleRider - November 7, 2021

amesgilbert:
BTW, I laughed out loud about your humane offer of banana bread, the timing was perfect. I’m grateful Jennings left it in.

It was the one welcome moment of levity while gazing into the abysmal vortex that the FOF has become, like the contrast of taking tea during a bombing raid.

94. diegoriverassquaretrouserleg - November 8, 2021

#86 Nevasayneva,

“So after the Jennings Brown podcast and SFgate article, what next?
Just back to business as usual at FOF?”

Here’s Jennings Brown on the Revelations podcast available on Spotify

“I’m confused by how calm this all is. For the last several months these people have been listening to Robert Burton talk about how today most of California will fall into the Ocean. Omen after omen affirming this prediction. Now we’re just eating pastries?”

Sadly, I’d say business as usual is in the FOF DNA. Abuse, predation bogus predictions and lying have all become normalized. One long term inmate recently wrote in a public foum, that “abuse is nourishment for the soul”, this is indicative of the current level of crazy. Trebor’s dementia is not dementia, he’s ascended to a higher state that can’t be understood, his sexual addiction and perverse behavior is, “Holy Sex”, everything is buffered and rationalized, it’s crazy town now and it’s going to get worse because the only one with the power to stop it is insane.

95. Golden Veil - November 8, 2021

Yes, the final episode of the Revelations podcast on the Fellowship of Friends did not disappoint. Jennings Brown’s final visit to Apollo, his myriad impressions of students in the pastoral setting so eloquently described, and finally, an excellent summation.

But, when I search Fellowship of Friends online using Google, Bing or Duck, Duck Go, the Revelations podcast does not come up in search engine results.

I wonder if a greater audience would find the podcast if search engine optimization techniques were employed, such as attaching key words like Robert Burton, Fellowship of Friends, Living Presence, Apollo in Oregon House, California, etc.?

Could a link ~ Revelations podcast ~ be added to the Blogroll on this discussion?

* Many thanks to all who participated in the interviews, especially the students and former students!

** Will the Fellowship of Friends ever be held accountable for violation of federal laws regarding the misuse of Paycheck Protection Program funds? (Revelations, Episode 6)

96. amesgilbert - November 8, 2021

DiegoSP said,

…it’s crazy town now and it’s going to get worse because the only one with the power to stop it is insane.

Unfortunately, this is true. Burton is surrounded by followers trained and normalized to unquestioning obedience. They are either infatuated with him, or fearful of him, and he knows how to take advantage of both types.
The only hope for change from within is for another Samuel Sanders to find his/her way to the Board, and to succeed in stirring fellow Board members to take up their responsibility to control Burton. That is a very faint hope indeed, I’m sure every present (and prospective) Board member shudders when recalling what happened to Samuel.

The only hope for change from without is action of some governing authority, and the chances of that are just as faint. Jennings Brown reported the few half–hearted attempts in the last fifty years. I say ‘half–hearted’ because, as just one example, when the ICE team arrived at the front gate of Apollo to start their ‘raid’, they announced themselves as such, and at the gatekeeper’s request, waited patiently while he phoned ahead, waited until a PR team from the Fellowship could be assembled and meet them at the gates to escort them around the property. This is a serious ‘raid’? They waited way enough time and more for urgent telephone calls hither and thither, and all sorts of evidence, including the actual laborers brought in on ‘religious visas’, to be moved out of sight and out of mind. Then, the ‘investigators’ allow themselves to be led around by the PR team!!! And only hours later do they realize that the main Fellowship office with all the serious documentation is three miles away, on Marysville Road! This so incompetent, so unserious, so unprofessional, one just has to laugh in amazement.

In one of the ‘Revelations’ episodes, Jennings interviewed Moira Penza, the lead prosecutor who took the Nxivm case to trial and obtained a judgement against Keith Raniere, the leader of the cult, and also some of his enablers. She told us her success was based on being laser focused on actual crimes and putting aside all the rest of the bad behavior, reprehensible though it was.

This is the only way forward, in my opinion. A very brave someone, a present or very recent member or insider, has to go to a lawyer like Ford Greene (the lawyer with previous success against the Scientology borg, and for Troy Buzbee), someone who knows the ropes, who in turn can find and persuade a prosecutor with jurisdiction, courage, ambition, and ability.

This brave someone has to have unassailable evidence of a crime that was committed recently enough to be within the statutes of limitations, evidence that can withstand any inquiry. This brave someone has to be able to go to court and withstand personal attacks by opposing lawyers, assaults on their reputation and integrity.

There may even be attempts to deprive them of their livelihood, certainly all sorts of pressures like hassling their friends and family and supporters (this is what the Fellowship did in the Buzbee case)—and possibly over a period of years, counting appeals.

In other words, a miracle.

97. Rich - November 8, 2021

96. amesgilbert: FOF has its own cemetery
uncle bob’s final resting place, no miracle

98. Golden Veil - November 8, 2021

This is a chance for a victim to step forward and “go for the gold.” Actual gold, forget the “gold alchemy.” Could the podcast with all its interviews be supportive of a recent victim who came forward and described personal sexual abuse? Would the victim risk being sent back to, say, Siberia?

Are there any American men out there reading this, who began a teenage sexual relationship in the last few years with the man who would be a Goddess?

https://www.wilkinsonstekloff.com/who-we-are/moira-kim-penza/

99. Tim Campion - November 8, 2021

Thanks to ShardofOblivion for adding the “Revelations” podcast to the Fellowship of Friends Wikipedia page!

100. Tim Campion - November 8, 2021

96. Ames
98. Golden Veil

As virtually all of RB’s victims are employees, I wonder whether, from a nonsecular perspective, the leadership of the Fellowship of Friends and Renaissance Vineyard & Winery could be prosecuted for workplace sexual harassment?

101. fofblogmoderator - November 8, 2021

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