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The Fellowship of Friends Discussion, part (1)3

This discussion is about a group called the Fellowship of Friends. Click on the Comments button to join in.

From Wikipedia:

Pro-Fellowship of Friends propaganda: The Fellowship of Friends is a spiritual school based on the Fourth Way tradition, founded in 1970 by Robert Earl Burton. It is a different form of a Fourth Way school than the one presented by George Gurdjieff, Peter Ouspensky and Rodney Collin, and it currently incorporates other sources into its teaching. The organization’s stated task is to enable its members to awaken and develop a soul that can survive death and achieve immortality. This task includes preserving the highest forms of beauty, knowledge, and culture; and using this task as a vehicle for consciousness. As of 2007, the organization has approximately 2,000 members, about a third of which live around the organization’s property in Northern California. The rest of its members live in North and South America, Europe and Asia. The Fellowship of Friends is recognized by the state and federal governments as a non-profit religious organization.

Anti-Fellowship of Friends propaganda: In 1967 Robert Burton attended a meeting led by Alex Horn. Mr. Horn was a student of the Fourth Way and conducted a group based on the Gurdjieff-Ouspensky ideas. Burton devoted himself to studying the Fourth Way and to participating in Mr. Horn’s group. After eighteen months he parted from his teacher. In 1970, Robert Earl Burton founded the Fellowship of Friends. In 1971, the organization acquired 1,300 acres of land in Oregon House, California, in order to provide its members with a retreat where they could realize their principles of self-development.

Robert Burton, stating that he was receiving guidance from higher beings, is said to have predicted a world-wide depression in 1984, an earthquake which would destroy California in 1998, and a nuclear war in 2006.

Some former members have criticized Burton for alleged sexual abuse, excessive control, and brainwashing, and several of them have left the organization because of these concerns. A former member sued Robert Burton and the organization in 1996 for the same reasons. This case and another suit claiming sexual abuse were settled out of court. The Fellowship of Friends’ president stated in a newspaper article that one suit was dismissed and two others were settled by the organization’s insurance companies to save the costs of litigation.

It should be added that membership fees consist of 10% of income, two extra payments each year and payments for dinners, talks and presentations. The Fellowship of Friends is not a cheap business.

This discussion is in its 12th incarnation, previous incarnations can be found here (hosted by the FoF blog and Animam Recro):

For part 12 click here.

For part 11 click here.

For part 10 click here.

For part 9 click here.

For part 8 click here.

For part 7 click here.

For part 6 click here.

For part 5 click here.

For part 4 click here.

For part 3 click here.

For part 2 click here.

For the article that I wrote so very long ago, and for the first and potentially most enlightening part of the discussion click here.

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

Enjoy the discussion, be civil and polite, and above all have fun!

829 Responses

  1. Here starts part 13!!!


  2. Congrats to all the 80 and more actors of part 12! Good acting, indeed!

    But where are the other 12000 and more involved?

    Greetings,
    BOlg


  3. Well, at least I find myself among the few!


  4. Choosen for the Blog! aH!


  5. A character here now alone on stage. Dim lights, silence yet. The audience waits…..


  6. on June 21, 2007 at 1:38 pm Howard Carter

    To Tim Campion,

    Your response gets to the root of the matter so to speak. It might take a while to formulate a worthy reply.

    I used to enjoy your “vine” photos.


  7. It’s quiet in here. Maybe too quiet…


  8. Still very early in the States….getting late here!
    Moved to Cambodia oldest Temples!


  9. on June 21, 2007 at 2:57 pm Was KathleenW

    Re the health insurance topic . . .

    If any reading this plan to rely on Medi-Cal for health care, please be aware that providers can refuse to accept Medi-Cal patients or limit the number. They receive reduced payment for their services and do more paperwork, and many conclude that they just cannot do it for more than just a few.

    It would be good to find out, while you are healthy, who in your area has room in their practice for more Medi-Cal patients.


  10. JoelF wrote:
    “I’d like to ask anyone who has a memory of an unpleasant encounter with me back then and wants to air it out to please post to the blog. If you post under the name you had then (this really helps) I hope to be able to respond.”
    ———————————————————————–

    You were the center director in New York.

    One time I arrived from another country and only had the center directors Ph#.
    I called you and told you that I was in the central train station trying to get to the Main Teaching house. You’re seemed surprise that I would dare to call you, your answer to me was “that it was not my (JoelF) business” and hanged up the phone.

    That was the last time I talked to you verbally.
    I thought that you were an ASS, very unfellowshipy.

    You remind me of the infof inner circle today.

    The good part is that you seem to be more human now.

    Thanks
    CS


  11. Joel,
    you asked a tough question about the unpleasant memories about you.
    I have a general positive memory instead.
    I lived in Renaissance and you came with your wife to lead a meeting. I forgot what you said but your presence in Renaissance was like a breath of fresh air for me, you did not seem rigid at all, quite at ease with yourself.
    I guess you just reminded me how stale I felt at the time and how “provincial” life at the property seemed then.
    I guess your “being” is what counts and counted at the time.


  12. Sheik!
    Thank you for opening a new page.
    After a while when the blog contains more than 500 posts it gets increasingly difficult to log on…not to mention the scrolling….

    Hope you are well and happy.


  13. Gosh, maybe this could be done privately, Joel? It has the potential to turn this blog into an “all about Joel F” space for awhile. Somehow this is just feels quite egotistic. Maybe you could use your page on the GF website to get your personal feedback.

    We all had/have our times of being unpleasant, unfriendly, scared, tired, impatient, shallow, clicquish. Even the kindest folks fail sometimes. With only a very, very few shining examples (like my husband, hee, hee, sorry couldn’t resist) – and then they are usually “photographed” for having “mechanical goodness”.

    Sharon H.


  14. It should be added that membership fees consist of 10% of income, two extra payments each year and payments for dinners, talks and presentations. The Fellowship of Friends is not a cheap business.

    ————————————————-

    In other words it could be 25%-33% of your net income.

    Thanks
    CS


  15. As fate would have it the very last post on Page 12 is an important one, in my view. I encourage Bass Ackwards to re-post it here, and if that doesn’t happen for everyone to read it there.

    The thread begins at 12/197, then 12/389, and finally 12/645.

    Joe Average had a relevant post at 12/623.

    Enjoy!


  16. on June 21, 2007 at 3:51 pm Veronicapoe

    Joel’s invitation to others to air their issues with his past behavior took courage and is an expression of integrity, in my opinion.

    unoanimo: write veronicapoe@gmail.com


  17. on June 21, 2007 at 4:04 pm Devil's Dictionary

    David (13): “As fate would have it the very last post on Page 12 is an important one, in my view. I encourage Bass Ackwards to re-post it here, and if that doesn’t happen for everyone to read it there. The thread begins at 12/197, then 12/389, and finally 12/645. Joe Average had a relevant post at 12/623.”

    Agreed. That’s an exceptional thread- many of the most significant questions we’ve been dealing with are covered. Well worth printing out for a careful read. DD


  18. 14 Veronicapoe
    “Joel’s invitation to others to air their issues with his past behavior took courage and is an expression of integrity, in my opinion.”

    This could also encourage some interesting stories about the fof that relate not just to Joel, but to other experiences in the fof, and to RB. I hope some more people respond to him (he’s had one positive response that I recall so far). I do like the essays and philosophizing on the blog (fortunately or unfortunately, I’ve contributed to that), but these first-person accounts can be the most interesting and have the most impact. Sort of moves us from the general to the specific, keeps our feet on the ground.


  19. on June 21, 2007 at 4:54 pm Was KathleenW

    15 Devil’s Dictionary

    “David (13): “As fate would have it the very last post on Page 12 is an important one, in my view. I encourage Bass Ackwards to re-post it here, and if that doesn’t happen for everyone to read it there. The thread begins at 12/197, then 12/389, and finally 12/645. Joe Average had a relevant post at 12/623.”

    Agreed. That’s an exceptional thread- many of the most significant questions we’ve been dealing with are covered. Well worth printing out for a careful read. DD”

    ————————

    Sorry about the “me too,” but I’ll chime in on these posts being a must-read. They are long, but it is worth reading every . . . single . . . word. More than once. Thank you Bass-Ackwards!

    Howard Carter, have you carefully read Bass-Ackwards’ posts? You seem like a sincere and thoughtful person, and my response to your post 638 was deep sadness. Sadness for you, for the part of each of us that is capable of that level of disconnect, and by extension, for the human race. I also think you are a brave person for continuing to put yourself out here
    .


  20. on June 21, 2007 at 4:58 pm Bass Ackwards

    Hello Bloggers on #13,
    Here is the repost, also to follow the thread of thought, try [12,#197 & #389]

    Hey, Joe [#626] and Former Student [#637, put your guns down]

    Thanks for taking the time to write as you did. I read it all the way through. Not bad for that infamous internet attention span.

    Once again, good points you have raised. And photographs, too. I guess after a few almost nervous breakdcwns over these RB questions about 20 years ago, I came to somewhat similar conclusions. Yep, for reasons I don’t understand, C Influence created a gay (who cares), vain, greedy, dominant, Conscious Being to found our School, oh, well. So really, in this 20 year interim, I have tried to focus on that School and to respect Robert’s Consciousness, albeit from a distance.

    What makes it a School for me? Only this: my first line is my own efforts to Remember my Self, my second line is Self-Remembering with and for others, my third line is Self Rembering for the planet (long term and short term). So what has changed, if anything? My own understanding of the experience of Self-Remembering itself has deepened so thoroughly recently so as to make Robert’s current Teaching seem like kindergarten.

    This blog helps me to celebrate the fact that no, I am not, or was not crazy 20 years ago. Now, to truly ask myself, after the full and disgusting blog expose, what is left over? A School? Or only my imaginary picture of one? If all the current members are willing to follow Robert’s current line of Teaching – well then – to me, no, it isn’t, not really, and not because of the Sequence, but rather because the Sequence itself is a signpost, an emblem of how shallow the Teaching has become (and even was from it’s inception). We are following a man who in his spiritual poverty is only partially crystallized, who can emanate but not explain, can see but not understand.

    And how do I know these things? I have recently been brought face to face (in book form at least) with Nisargadatta, who, though deceased, has quickly replaced Robert Burton as my Conscious Teacher. He explains Self Remembering in ways Robert never has – and maybe never could. He explains what it is based upon and where it goes. The influence upon me has been electric, so that I find myself totally demolished by the clarity and force of his ideas, as many of us were upon reading G & O so long ago. He blows the dust away from all of RB’s misconceptions as evidenced by the list of FOF “myths”, myths that in fact keep us asleep rather than serve for any awakening power. So that finally, I have come to realize that even from a Consciousness point of view, in the Fellowship, we have it all “Bass Ackwards”. We have 90% truth yet with a 10% falsity distortion coming from viewing work on one’s Self from the wrong direction, from the point of view of a partially crystallized machine, but not from a fully enlightened source. And thus, if there is any hope for our School, it lies in this, in understanding the truths that N. (or other truly enlightened Masters) reveal and encouraging the students who are here to really and truly “wake up”, wake up for starters to a few of the imaginary pictures of ourselves and our Teacher.


  21. Bass Ackwards wrote (#12:645):

    “This blog helps me to celebrate the fact that no, I am not, or was not crazy 20 years ago. Now, to truly ask myself, after the full and disgusting blog expose, what is left over? A School? Or only my imaginary picture of one? If all the current members are willing to follow Robert’s current line of Teaching – well then – to me, no, it isn’t, not really, and not because of the Sequence, but rather because the Sequence itself is a signpost, an emblem of how shallow the Teaching has become (and even was from it’s inception). We are following a man who in his spiritual poverty is only partially crystallized, who can emanate but not explain, can see but not understand. “

    There are many current Fellowship members reading this, and most are grappling with the same issues raised by Bass Ackwards. Even Siddiq and Howard Carter, I would dare to presume; their roles just make this difficult to admit, especially in the sometimes volatile environment of the blog.

    I think making too strong a distinction between “in” and “out”– whether in a general way or specifically for participants on the blog — is a subtle form of buying into the psychological manipulation that represents the very worst side of Robert Burton’s teaching. We are each of us “in” as well as “out” to varying degrees. Why else would we be spending time reading all this? And using the word “cult” is like getting into a debate about abortion or gun control. Nobody on either side wants to concede an inch, even though just about everyone on all sides tends to be closer to the middle than to either extreme. Could anything be more dualistic (or formatory as we used to say)?

    I tend to agree with Bass Ackward that something took a very wrong turn in the Fellowship teaching. Perhaps the fundamental ethical or moral corruption intrinsic to Robert’s predatory sexual behavior in his role as spiritual leader was bound to result in a meltdown of the integrity of his teaching sooner or later. It’s hard to know. Regardless of why, in my view Robert Burton himself left the school I loved. And if the FOF of 2007 is the “real school” as it was always meant to be, then I was never a member, and so I never in fact left anything.

    The bigger question that weaves in and out of all the postings on this blog is about living our lives. Now. Even if you happen to be a devoted and grateful Fellowship member as you read these words, it’s still your own life that is most at stake here; not just the poor unfortunates’ who “lost their work” and who “C Influence released from the school.” If you do not feel a twinge of conscience for the many young men who were sexually preyed upon and exploited by RB for the past 3.7 decades, at least take careful stock of your own situation and the status of your own spiritual life.

    Whether he stole them from others or made them up himself, Robert DID teach us many valuable things over the years. One that sticks for me is that our time is limited. To me, today, that means I can no longer waste my time on the shallow FOF teaching of 2007. Maybe Nisargadatta is the path, maybe not. At least knowing there are teachers like him with real integrity proves that there are other options. And knowing this is the most effective “cult-buster” I can imagine.

    Thanks for listening.

    With love,

    joseph.granados@gmail.com


  22. Why shouldn’t the blog be “about Joel” for a bit? I see no harm in it. After all, he did play a role in many people’s lives back then. And unlike the FOF, there are essentially no rules on the blog — why impose any? I’ve had enough of those for a lifetime.

    My only contribution to the Joel thread is a positive one — I was living in New York in early 1983, and was in a bad way, school-wise. I really needed to leave for my own sanity, but the usual gremlins of fear and guilt were holding me back. I buttonholed you during the break in a meeting somewhere in Manhattan, and told you my tale, and of my desire to leave. You said, “Since moving to New York, I’ve come to realize that the Fellowship is not for everyone.” What a relief it was not to get some heavy-duty guilt-inducing party line BS — that would have put me over the edge. That validation was all I needed — I was out like a shot, and I thank you for that.

    Ironically, I did end up rejoining in New York a couple of years later, but that’s a different story.

    I’m sure my name wouldn’t mean anything to you, as that may have been the only time we spoke, so I’ll stay anonymous for now.


  23. In retrospect, my post to Joel was an expression of my own reactions to him in the old days. My apologies.


  24. Well, just to throw my two cents to the wind, I think I’d rather have a running discussion on the topics Bass Ackwards’ or Tim Campion have proposed, rather than on what people may have to say about Joel. No offense, Joel.

    In that regard, I hope to add to the BA and TC/HC threads soon.


  25. 22

    Just skip over the posts in question, then we all get what we want to. There are often several threads going at once.


  26. on June 21, 2007 at 6:39 pm Eyes wide shut

    I wonder what REB would say about a license plate that read ‘501c3’ that was on a car that sped off down the road and disappeared into the glow of the sunset and vanished forever? Or, like Uspensky, who walked down the street and turned into a smoke shop, only to wake up a few hours later and realize the identification and sleep? REB has that plate in his head – did you know?

    ****** ****

    U.S. Internal Revenue Code
    501(c)(3) Exemption Requirements:

    To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and NONE OF ITS EARNINGS MAY INURE TO ANY PRIVATE SHAREHOLDER OR INDIVIDUAL. In addition, it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.

    Organizations described in section 501(c)(3) are commonly referred to as charitable organizations. Organizations described in section 501(c)(3), other than testing for public safety organizations, are eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions in accordance with Code section 170.

    The exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3) are charitable, religious, educational, scientific, literary, testing for public safety, fostering national or international amateur sports competition, and the preventing cruelty to children or animals. The term charitable is used in its generally accepted legal sense and includes relief of the poor, the distressed, or the underprivileged; advancement of religion; advancement of education or science; erecting or maintaining public buildings, monuments, or works; lessening the burdens of government; lessening neighborhood tensions; eliminating prejudice and discrimination; defending human and civil rights secured by law; and combating community deterioration and juvenile delinquency.

    To be organized exclusively for a charitable purpose, the organization must be a corporation, community chest, fund, or foundation. A charitable trust is a fund or foundation and will qualify. However, AN INDIVIDUAL WILL NOT QUALIFY. The organizing documents must limit the organization’s purposes to exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3) and must not expressly empower it to engage, other than as an insubstantial part of its activities, in activities that are not in furtherance of one or more of those purposes. This requirement may be met if the purposes stated in the organizing documents are limited in some way by reference to section 501(c)(3). In addition, an organization’s assets must be permanently dedicated to an exempt purpose. This means that if an organization dissolves, its assets must be distributed for an exempt purpose, to the federal government, or to a state or local government for a public purpose. To establish that an organization’s assets will be permanently dedicated to an exempt purpose, its organizing documents should contain a provision insuring their distribution for an exempt purpose in the event of dissolution. Although reliance may be placed upon state law to establish permanent dedication of assets for exempt purposes, an organization’s application can be processed by the IRS more rapidly if its organizing documents include a provision insuring permanent dedication of assets for exempt purposes. For examples of provisions that meet these requirements, see Publication 557, Tax-Exempt Status for Your Organization.

    An organization will be regarded as operated exclusively for one or more exempt purposes only if it engages primarily in activities that accomplish exempt purposes specified in section 501(c)(3). AN ORGANIZATION WILL NOT BE SO REGARDED IF MORE THAN AN INSUBSTANTIAL PART OF ITS ACTIVITIES DOES NOT FURTHER AN EXEMPT PURPOSE. For more information concerning types of charitable organizations and their activities, see Publication 557.

    The organization MUST NOT BE ORGANIZED OR OPERATED FOR THE BENEFIT OF PRIVATE INTERESTS, SUCH AS THE CREATOR or the creator’s family, shareholders of the organization, other designated individuals, or persons controlled directly or indirectly by such private interests. NO PART OF A SECTION 501(c)(3) ORGANIZATION’S NET EARNINGS MAY INURE TO THE BENEFIT OF ANY PRIVATE SHAREHOLDER OR INDIVIDUAL. A private shareholder or individual is a person having a personal and private interest in the activities of the organization. If the organization engages in an excess benefit transaction with a person having substantial influence over the organization, an excise tax may be imposed on the person and any organization managers agreeing to the transaction.

    http://www.irs.gov/charities/charitable/article/0,,id=96099,00.html

    ****** ****

    Rumour has it that the U.S. Immigration and Naturalisation Service (INS – part of Homeland Security) is privately and individually interviewing fellowship members holding religious visas and/or ministerial status to find out exactly what it is that they do with their time and how they fulfill the above mentioned charitable and/or religious functions in service to humanity. Are they doing traditional and customary activities for those privileges? Seems the INS believes the Fellowship of Friends could be a bogus religion in service to a despot. And, we all know how the U.S. of A. is ready, willing and able to invade World 3 (ooops, I mean Third World) countries to deal with despots. Egads, this is a Third World country! – just ask some Katrina victims in N’Orleans. Hey, they might even want the mineral rights. What if someone ‘spills the beans,’ so to speak (pun may or may not be intended in relation to precious bodily fluids). Could REB be taken into custody when crossing the U.S. border while he is out in the open? Stay tuned for the next episode where Gomer (as in Pyle) gets the goods.

    P.S. There are perhaps 15,000 previous members of the Fellowship of Friends. They all can have at least 15 minutes of fame to tell their stories here, if they so desire.


  27. Ok joel. I once missed a connecting flight on to the other coast leaving me stranded in a very strange city so i rang up the only people i knew of that might be able to help,and being veeeeery naive, thought they might offer me a sofa for a night or a floor space for a sleeping bag. But no deal sorry the shop is closed. After surviving a few mugging attempts a young black girl fresh back from apartheid that i met again after having met on the previous plane, let me sleep on her floor, i could have been an axe murderer. While travelling I experienced these kind of “mechanical” goodnesses quite often from simple unassuming people that we fellowship types looked down on. A very poor family once, because their young boy suggested it, took me in fed me entertained me and when i left, forced a basket of food and some clothes on me. This was in Spain when I was as they say a” boy in motion.” Any way joel there was also something positive to find in the situation connected with you. No hard feelings ! putting forgiveness back into the time body works for me . love from Cy.


  28. To Ass Backwards, who writes that “the Sequence itself is a signpost, an emblem of how shallow the Teaching has become (and even was from it’s inception)”–makes me wonder what efforts you have made to try this method of prolonging presence. After being initially somewhat puzzled about it, I found some helpful material showing me how to use the sequence as a tool, now I see it as a deepening of the teaching and a powerful new method for presence. Of course you don’t have to agree with me, but have you given it a chance?

    I agree with Joseph there is a grappling with some of the issues on the blog going on, although I believe for most it is not about some other teacher that could be better somewhere else. The questions you raise are questions I deal with and have dealt with for years in various roles and circumstances, and some first and second line work. Beyond all of that are how to spend my life well, in our moment to moment struggle. Being here, I feel I can do more, contribute more and gain more. That is why I stay. Not because it is perfect…

    PS on the last page there was a suggestion as to my identity which is incorrect. Thanks Ames for the compliment.

    Siddiq


  29. The blog of Truth and Reconciliation…

    I’d like to share an act of kindness from a student I never met, nor ever got to know. On my long drive from where I joined to Renaissance, a student whom I never met allowed me to stay overnight in his home, without him even being there. The key was in the mailbox. He was out of town for a few days. Admittedly, it wasn’t in a big city like New York. I left the next day continuing my journey before he came back from his trip. I never met him, nor spoke to him ever again.

    Thanks EVERYONE for sharing your honesty. We all profit from your struggles and insights Across the River, ever heard of the book, “The Tipping Point”? You might enjoy it. Exlax 611, you made my eyes tear up reading your kind response to Arthur.

    GOlb: Why not make yourself useful and share with us your experiences of the awesome temples in Cambodia…are you at Angkor Watt or what? Dude, I am jealous.


  30. 26

    “I agree with Joseph there is a grappling with some of the issues on the blog going on, although I believe for most it is not about some other teacher that could be better somewhere else.”

    And this supposition is based on what? Do you think the people you talk to, as limited a number as I’m guessing there are , find YOU are the one they wish to expose their true inner self and conflicts to? I also don’t see the focus of the blog as suggesting one can find a better teacher. That’s a straw man.

    It’s pretty clear that whatever methods RB has used and is using are like the blinders on a work horse. They make one think they are “doing” something, when they actually keep one focused with tunnel vision, allowing one, if your a “good student” as opposed to “losing one’s work”, to only see certain allowed realities while eliminating anything else that might distract from the direction of the “ruling body”.

    If one is not one of “the slugs” than one is sitting pretty fat on the work of others. Again, it is so self-focused that to be honest with oneself would require one question very seriously one’s judgment about staying in such a codependent and dysfunctional environment.

    The methods as espoused in the FOF are to produce drone workers and a financial inflow that continues to feed the inner circle and their hunger for power and excess at the cost of everyone else.


  31. Bass Ackwards:

    Your angles and questions were beautifully and articulately stated; thank you. I have a couple of thoughts in response:

    1. It is easier to have an independent, non-conformist and evolving relationship with the “School” when living at a distance from Isis. At Isis, at least when attending events, one is confronted repeatedly by conversations where you have to bite your tongue in response to “blissed out” (as Dara used to say) remarks, or risk some pretty heavy, uncomfortable energy. Just a small, unloaded example: I got quite a few sharp, appraising glances (as in “she must be leaving”) when I would admit that I didn’t enjoy the circus/ballet extravaganzas at the Theatron. Also, many students at Isis are quite insulated from ideas outside of the mainstream of Robert’s current “teaching”. Usually, one can only have more radical discussions in private.

    2. An attitude that is prevalent at Isis, and encouraged by Robert, is that one need not have a responsible, caring, truthful level of integrity in regards to other people, friends (including other students), family, community, etc. – only the “School” matters. Which often means, only what Robert wants today matters. So if you have a business arrangement, or partnership, or contract, or appointment, or confidence, etc., it takes a low priority if Robert should want something that is even slightly at odds with that relationship. This encourages a certain sociopathic growth of callousness to all others. Many try to emulate Robert in his callousness – they call it “practical” or “intentional insincerity”, or the “aim is more important”, blah, blah. I do not think that it is possible to progress as a School community without a lot of deep work on our level of integrity towards each other. I don’t think many of the “inner circle” care to do that, or even admit the possibility. While I’m pretty sure that you, for example, do have a such a high level of integrity, there are lots of students one just can’t trust, even minimally. So what do we do with them in the improved school?


  32. 29

    Very good points.


  33. on June 21, 2007 at 9:09 pm Was KathleenW

    26 Siddiq:

    “After being initially somewhat puzzled about it, I found some helpful material showing me how to use the sequence as a tool, now I see it as a deepening of the teaching and a powerful new method for presence.”

    ———————–

    When I was around 4 or 5 years old, I was outside in the yard, bored because I had been banished from the house for one hour while my mother took a nap. I was sitting on the grass next to a tree, and began repeating the word “grass” over and over. I picked a common item in my environment and began repeating it, for something to do.

    I very clearly remember going into an altered state where the word grass became a meaningless sound, and everything around me became pure alive presence. I could probably have done the same thing with “cabbage” or “tinker toy.” I’ve talked to others who did the same thing as children. We knew it innately, then forgot.

    I’m not saying that the sequence is something any five-year-old could do. I’m saying that we can probably use any simple sound, spoken repetitively, to create a more expanded state of awareness. It’s both very special and nothing special.


  34. #29 Sharon

    Regarding your second point, in the Fellowship of Friends, we accepted a morality which stated “in pursuit of the prize, collateral damage is unavoidable and acceptable.”

    I was reading an article today about peace activist Georgia Kelly. It states “…Kelly feels that apathy, self-involvement and a narcissistic obsession with self-improvement – some of the hallmarks of the New Age movement – are still a major part of America’s arguable lack of interest in the condition of the rest of the world.”

    Perceptive, for a life person.


  35. 628 unoanimo
    My question about BBQ and Corn on the Cob was not in any way rhetorical. Tuesday for lunch I had some corn on the cob with Butter. Even 30 years ago Robert would have been in shock if anyone dared do such a thing around him. Just before I wrote the Post I had some chicken with BBQ sauce that I made. My face and hands were covered with the stuff.

    So it is a real question. There is some real value in Robert’s teaching on Alchemy. When it becomes mechanical and enforced by inner considering it is lunatic. what I am able to gather about the development of Robert’s Teaching it had become more and more mechanical.

    Even In the ’70’s I thought the word exercises were too mechanical. What value an exercise that becomes mechanical. To assist in being more awake the exercise needs to change. If Robert really cared for his students he might throw a party bring in a Blues band , tell every one to wear jeans and eat BBQ, and Corn on the Cob.

    Is this remotely possible. Wen was the last time Ranch emplotee’s went to the corner Bar and had a Cheeseburger and beer/ Is this because it is impossible to self remember in there. Is it like a no self remembering zone.

    Currant members need to consider what “The Teacher” has givem them if as he says to leave him or fail to follow his instructions means the loss of ones work. I had to live with and deal with the feelings of guilt, shame and depression after leaving. Yet in my heart I believed in my “Divine Teacher” and felt I must be at fault. This is enslavement not freedom. Self remembering is freedom not slavery.
    Given the very best interprettation Robert Burton has created a school of the 2nd way based on total giving up of will and belief in his divine status. If as Rodney Collins states evolution is into the past Robert is doing very well at getting ready to be a corrupt Abbot of a wealthy Monastary or other prelate .


  36. The following post, written four months ago (P. 1 #155), beautifully expresses the profound experience many of us have shared.

    ***

    Cheryl Says:
    February 21st, 2007 at 9:55 pm
    Hello Friends, Old and New,

    I am an X Student. I was in the Fellowship for 18 years and left in 2006. It took me a long time to realize that I joined to wake up, yes, and also to be saved — from my messy life, and the terror of finding myself in this really awful situation of being embodied. The Fellowship and Robert saved me – from myself. I needed that, when I was 26. I needed the structure and rules from somewhere outside of myself, to help me learn to say NO to the Wild Child within that had pretty much always been able to get away with everything. I needed someone strong in my life that I would obey without question.

    I was saved! My mantra was, “Never give up.” As long as I stayed in the School and never ever left, somehow, some lifetime, I would escape this hell called Life, wake up and get to sit around in a place called Paradise with all of you, for eternity. Thank God, Thank Robert, Thank FOF!

    And I came to know where I would die and be buried, and how my funeral would be. I liked to walk up to the cemetary alone and wander through the beautiful, quiet place behind the orchard. Gradually, friends were buried there, and I saw the headstones of JK, MP, RM,PB: They Had Made It! The funerals were one of the most beautiful events we had, weren’t they? We were all so close, close to one another and close to death, it was high and rich and vivid.

    It was incredibly comforting to know that as I aged, someone on an octave would bring soup to my home and help me in the bathroom. It was incredibly comforting to know that as I took my last breaths in this lifetime, a circle of old friends would most likely surround me with their presence, poetry, flowers, candlelight. You would come to my funeral and then bury me up there in that lovely cemetary with my friends.

    As long as I stayed, I was assured of this salvation. My body would be taken care of,my emotional centre would be surrounded by friends, and my Soul would get to come back to the next lifetime, possibly The Ninth, The One. How irresistable is that?

    In addition, the Fellowship was an extraordinary and incredible world.

    We could travel and disembark in the middle of Russia/Egypt/Paris/Kiev/ETC, look out and find a Friend, the one possibly holding a work book, but more recognizably, the one with that It-ness that’s been referred to here in the blog. We see one another across the crowded chaotic room, and smile a knowing smile. In the madness of Life, we are present.

    I was able to play so many different roles and learn so many different things! I was a vineyard worker, I was a waitress, I was a cook, I was a dishwasher, I was an events planner, a minister, a director, an audience, a producer, a fundraiser, a palm seed planter, a palm tree waterer, a diner, a flower arranger, a teacher, a student, a lover, a friend. and more…don’t we all have these amazing lists and memories of what we did?

    I was so busy. There was no room for anything else but the events, meetings, working, meetings, receptions, dinners, octaves upon octaves.

    And yes, internally something did change. I developed that It-ness, the “you are what observes, not what is being observed”. At times it was so Here that I thought, “maybe it’s happened…”, and other times it was a distant taste of something that I knew I’d had but couldn’t quite access in that moment.

    But over time, I allowed myself to return to some of the questions I had always put away on a shelf, ever since I joined. That it-ness, for example, It had always been with me, it didn’t just happen once I joined FOF. But when I told older students of this Truth, they quoted, “well, Influence C was already working with your grandparents and knew you were coming here.” or, “Yes, but this Way will get you there faster.” Somehow those angles always sounded a bit weird to me, and unsatisfactory.

    And Life…as I became less afraid of this Life experience, Life became a wonderful thing. Why is Life a bad word in FOF, I wondered? Is it really true that all of the other people on the entire planet earth are doomed to be driven from vessel to vessel for eternity? That we somehow have a monopoly on consciousness? That we are the only ones who are on a Way? That none of the other 44 seemed to need our particular Way to wake up, but we do?

    (There was no real forum to be able to ask those questions, though. If I expressed my doubts or a unique opinion I would most likely receive a photograph. and I did the same to you.)

    And about those unspeakable dark shadows, what can I say? Is it really my own limited being, formatory mind, feminine dominance, my King of clubs, my Queen of Hearts…that is disturbed by … what I came to know…? I tried as hard as I possibly could to see it that way, as a limitation of mine, a result of my being under more laws. When I felt the repressed outrage rising, I quickly signed up to attend a dinner, or wash dishes, or go to a meeting. Separate! Be! Do NOT express negative emotions! Don’t gossip! I’m sure if I was there now, I’d be using the Sequence to not allow Those I’s in, to make myself believe that it is okay.

    It came down to this:

    After 18 years, I am terrified of myself, still. I’m terrified that if I don’t belong to FOF, I am food for the moon, I am a lost Soul, I’m going to hell. I blew it. I’m a spiritual Loser.

    It came down to this:

    Maybe I’m weak, stuck under too many laws, can’t see as high as my other friends, but it’s very simple…Certain things are not okay with me.

    It came down to this:

    I must leave to find out who I am on my own, outside of the context of FOF. I need to know who I am if I “give up” instead of clinging and grasping and “never give up.” I need to face my fear, the Fear of me. The terror of being…the horror of not-being, of NO-THING-ness.

    I left.

    It turns out, for me (and I do not know how it is supposed to turn out, for you…but I do wish for you to really search and really know why you are where you are. And it’s useful to fully understand where you are.), that Leaving is as fundamentally important to my Path as the Joining FOF, and as the Belonging to FOF, phases were.

    Leaving is like jumping off of a cliff, it is a death, it is a good-bye. But it turns out I’m jumping into my LIFE, feeling that I actually have two feet on the ground, on my own, I can walk, wow, I can walk! (I wasn’t sure I could)

    I spend a lot of time walking on an empty beach and everything is my Teacher, the IT-ness IS, and the NOT-IT-Ness, I’m nothing, and we are all and everything. IT is not dependent on my teaching payment, my hours of FOF first, second and third line.

    I entered the terror of my existence and everything is ok. There was this funny feeling in the beginning of living my life, after leaving, when I’d be driving down the road and thought, “Oh, I’m allowed to live my life? I’m allowed to be, here, making my own decisions, allowing the flow of life and the universe to guide me?” and this timid opening that widened into a huge embrace that I’m free. (free of so much…so many complicated unnecessary layers in between). It’s like jumping back up out of the rabbit hole into my life and thunk! Oh, here I am! Here I am, this is the Life I am living! How gorgeous.

    I also don’t want to make Leaving sound all glossy and perfect. There was a hard part right near the begining of Leaving where a lot of the repressed stuff came up, and I felt so sick that I wanted to turn myself inside out and scrub the underbelly of every cell. So I did, and now I feel cleaner. (all kinds of methods of scrubbing are possible, from a great sobbing cry to meditation to hysterical laughing to therapy to new guides and friends who gently hold you and let you be)

    another hard part is missing my friends who are still there. but it isn’t as tough these days, because so many have left. In the Leaving there is the good-bye but also a long lost “HIIII!!!!” to friends I’d abandoned once in the name of the exercise. they forgave me, they understood, they’d done it too…as I forgive you, now not calling me, I understand, I did it too.

    And the new connections and friends are just as IT-tty when we bring our It-ness to our new friendships, that seed within that Zsuzsa spoke of, in all of us, in everything, it can be touched, reached, accessed.

    I’m really enjoying being quiet and not busy and not too many gurus or a form, and not in charge of some unbelievable octave and not wondering what else i have to do to get some awakening for me. It’s right here, right now, and it is most abundant when I’m not so obsessed with making it mine. Isn’t that funny? I don’t actually have to push, work, disallow, not express, transform, effort effort effort effort effort myself to being. It’s like what someone said earlier about the Truth, It is, we don’t have to make The Truth into truth.

    Whoever you are reading this, X or Current or Never Been FOF Student, I send my love, my smiles…

    I’ve been trying to hit the “submit” button now for awhile and … what is that old, familiar, constricted feeling? Oh, that’s it: It’s the fear that grew in me over the years of expressing my own, unique angle. Fear of thinking for myself, standing on my own. Amazing how thick it is, I’m still letting go and giving up, into the layers as they come.

    Cheryl


  37. Hi Guys,
    Just a reminder – again –
    If you want me to include your info in Contact list – please act before July 1st ( I am going to mail the list as it is around July 1st).
    When you send me your info I’ll e-mail you back an invitation link to Greater Fellowship community site, which is constantly growing and is lots of fun.

    I have a feeling that most of the folks here already made up their mind about it, but in case you haven’t yet – here’s your chance!

    Send your info (name, e-mail, years in FOF, phone, etc) to

    Janna Makaeva
    malaec@optonline.net


  38. Non Duality
    I have read some of the material on this subject. It does seem useful and valuble. It does not however say anything new or different from The 4th way. It too is a language and as such represents an intellectual construct. The fact that it is a different language does not make it any better or less valuble. If at some point this is useful to anyone than it is.

    My understanding is this if what ever they are calling “non duality” exists then the state of realizing the self exists then this state is self remembering.
    That what we experience is different than what we might have experienced, believed or were taught in the Fellowship that is either our limitation or that of our Teacher.
    It does not change the reality that there is a possible higher state and that this is only experienced by you.

    For example a quote from

    Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi .

    “Stillness or peace is realisation. There is no moment when the Self is not. So long as there is doubt or the feeling of non-realisation, the attempt should be made to rid oneself of these thoughts. They are due to the identification of the Self with the not-Self. When the not-Self disappears, the Self alone remains. To make room, it is enough that the cramping be removed; room is not brought in from elsewhere. ”

    I accept that it is saying there is a state of non-self remembering and a state of self remembering. We need not get hung up on defining the self because that’s bullshit, wiseacreing. What is real is whether we as individuals can experience a different state. This quote suggests that there is a specific process of non-identification with our thoughts and feelings that is necessary.
    Words, words, words
    get over it words are never what they describe.
    The self that Gurdjieff, Ouspensky, Nicoll and Collin tried to remember is not a different self.
    It is all one.

    Almost every language and culture has its own forms of bread and words to describe them.
    Guess what it is all bread.
    Saying that the language of non duality is essential better than The Language of the 4th way is like saying Chinese is better than English. Yes their are advantages and disadvantages to different languages ( see Gurdjieff’s discussion of language in “All and Everything”)

    Reality exists independently from any language.

    If one was hungry enough and in some location where they knew no language I would wager they would still be able to find a way to communicate and get food.
    Much depends on attitude.
    If there is an attitude of trying to be open to other perspectives than communication is possible.
    A key factor in this is to speak from my own experience and what works for me.

    Accepting all the time that with any luck at all I will change my understanding and relationship to the same ideas over time.
    As a former student of Robert Burton I can be very sensitive to and negative to anyone that seems to demand accepting some dogmatic interprettation of what is essentialy my own personal business.

    Part of this is why I say to learn to use the correct tense. So many Fellowship members are accustomed to speaking from a dogmatic perspective and phrasing so as to negate the individuality of their own experince that they don’t realize it is occuring.

    I enjoy the Sonnets of Shakespeare. To me they contain the exact same information as “The Theory of celestial Influence” and Walt Whitman.
    I do not however demand that anyone agree with my interprettation.

    here is an example.

    Beauty= h-12 and sex energy

    What do you think this means?

    To me Shakespeare is saying that all we have is a loan that must be repaid ( just as The Gospels and the parable of the Talents)
    If we do not use H-12 , sex energy, life energy to self remember and realize our higher self then at death all will return to where it came from.
    Does this seem to be an obscure reading/
    To me this is one of the very clear Sonnets.

    Sonnets of William Shakespeare
    Sonnet 4

    IV.

    Unthrifty loveliness, why dost thou spend
    Upon thyself thy beauty’s legacy?
    Nature’s bequest gives nothing but doth lend,
    And being frank she lends to those are free.
    Then, beauteous niggard, why dost thou abuse
    The bounteous largess given thee to give?
    Profitless usurer, why dost thou use
    So great a sum of sums, yet canst not live?
    For having traffic with thyself alone,
    Thou of thyself thy sweet self dost deceive.
    Then how, when nature calls thee to be gone,
    What acceptable audit canst thou leave?
    Thy unused beauty must be tomb’d with thee,
    Which, used, lives th’ executor to be.


  39. #644(?), #2(12?) A Former Student

    From Joe:

    “This is a personal experience that cannot be compared to anyone else’s. I cannot demand anyone else drop a concept any more than another can demand I retain an outgrown one.”

    Perhaps you missed these two sentences?

    To my eyes Joe’s post was glowing with HIS truth and sincerity. One of the most profound posts from Big Heart/Mind
    yet.


  40. on June 21, 2007 at 10:13 pm with malice toward none

    28 Bruce

    “The methods as espoused in the FOF are to produce drone workers and a financial inflow that continues to feed the inner circle and their hunger for power and excess at the cost of everyone else.”

    I think it is disingenuous of you to comment on the effectiveness or intent of the methods as espoused in the FOF. As you remember, the first thing necessary for any of the methods to work was to gain control over the expression of negativity. Without this, all other work is futile. I was in the community most of the time you were and cannot remember any time that you were able to show significant control over the expression of negativity.


  41. on June 21, 2007 at 10:18 pm Old Fish In The Sea

    Bass Ackwards:
    I appreciate your veiwpoint which you articulate very nicely.

    One thing that you have not mentioned but which has become important to me is Robert’s division of almost everything into good and bad (good impressions vs bad impressions; lower self vs steward; 9 of hearts vs king of clubs etc.). For Robert, (I have heard him say this) anything that does not lead to presence is the lower self. Perhaps he does not intend it, but the overall impression from the current teachings is to view the sequence as good and most other manefestations as bad or some sort of wasted moment.

    I notice that when I am present (in a higher state) the division between good and bad disappears. Everything reflects the miraculous creation.

    Presence is not about ignoring, fighting against or suppressing the impressions that we don’t like (including our own suffering, feelings of wrongdoing and negativity) but about being present to them.

    When we start to see everything that is not feeding presence as bad (lower self) we foster a simplistic morality. The division into good and bad leads to a split in our personality (good OldFish vs bad OldFish) which leads to hypocrisy and diminishes conscience. In one moment I am the good OldFish and I am proud of myself. I forget about the other side. In another moment I am the bad OldFish and I cannot see the good side and I go towards self deprecation.

    Conscience is the part in us that can see all sides at once. The division into good and bad tends to make only one side visible at a time. This kind of thinking is dangerous.

    Anyway, after being out for almost a month now, this simplistic morality seems to be what leads many students not only away from presence but into a path of depression and self-deprecation. If I wanted to change the school I would possibly start there giving more encouragement for what is, for the many different kinds of essences (including the queen of hearts and instinctive types), for the diversity of life on earth. I would encourage, people to try to be more free from the Fellowship morality that tends to define good and bad based on how Robert sees the world. We each have our individual talents and these talents need encouragement. The growth process involves setting our own principles, based on our own talents and our own experience and following them. We can develop only to a point of a simplistic essence by following a simplistic morality established by a man that has demonstrated with his license plate mentality, his risky life style, and his failed prophesies that he is not very closely connected to reality.


  42. on 21 Jun 2007 at 7:47 pm
    26 siddiq
    To Ass Backwards, who writes that “the Sequence itself is a signpost, an emblem of how shallow the Teaching has become (and even was from it’s inception)”–makes me wonder what efforts you have made to try this method of prolonging presence. After being initially somewhat puzzled about it, I found some helpful material showing me how to use the sequence as a tool, now I see it as a deepening of the teaching and a powerful new method for presence. Of course you don’t have to agree with me, but have you given it a chance?

    In 1975. I was living on the ranch. I went into silence for 40 days. I was involved in one of the artificaily intense construction activities. I helped operate a back hoe to put the electrical and phone lines underground. I found that operating the machine was such a dull activity that I needed to find something to stay awake. I followed a suggestion I found in the writings of Lewis Carrol that seemed to suggest a similiar “inner prayer” of the heart as the Philikolia” I began memorizing Sonnets and by the end of the octave knew the first 10. I could recite these internally for however long it took. This certainly prolonged awarness and self remembering as well as providing meaningful subjects for reflection. Try reading the first 10 Sonnets they are a very clear discussion of self remembering and the nature and importance of efforts. Does “The Sequance” teach you that.

    I’m sure there is a value in “The Sequance” but it is nothing new or even that good. It is a form of prayer and meditation. To compare the relative value of the two efforts write again after memorizing one sonnet and using it as your mantra for a while
    Scott


  43. Thank you Sheik, for continuing this Blog. , I imagine it’s taking a lot of your time…. I am Bonita’s (1st Student of Robert’s Fellowship) youngest daughter. I’m moving my home at this time, and so will be unable to converse day by day, but hope to contribute to the site , as I can, givin the web-mail situation within Old Virginia, with the sod roads and old estates that Stanley R. gilded with his love of appreciation of protected sites. Please refer to : Stanley Robertson, Gilder: Obituairy.

    Thank you to all who give their truthful life histories in the FOF. I’m most thankful to Sandra C., JoelF., and Carl M. whom I can maybe? identify in the site.. Much love to you all !

    Warmly Amanda

    Ps: Carl, not sure of your e-mail Please call /write me…


  44. #37 Yesri Baba,

    Yes sirree baba. Riding your wavelength about that Big Heart/Mind thing. Have you seen Genpo Roshi’s video on Ken Wilbur’s web site? It just popped into my mind today.

    I second the emotion about Joe Average’s post (636 or thereabouts). Way, way beyond average.

    Silly old blog! I try to keep silent but can’t.


  45. on 21 Jun 2007 at 10:12 pm37 Yesri baba
    #644(?), #2(12?) A Former Student

    From Joe:

    “This is a personal experience that cannot be compared to anyone else’s. I cannot demand anyone else drop a concept any more than another can demand I retain an outgrown one.”

    Perhaps you missed these two sentences?

    To my eyes Joe’s post was glowing with HIS truth and sincerity. One of the most profound posts from Big Heart/Mind
    yet.

    All to true. I actually thought ol’ Yesri Baba will have a comment on this.
    So what?
    Do I need to be right?

    My challanging one part of the post doesnot negate the value of the rest. As I said before Sometimes my Eyes hurt, sometimes its late, sometimes I cranky and sometimes the only part that will do anything is my Mercurial and it only likes to be critical.

    I have unfortunatly it appears at times recent experiences in writing papers on logic, critical thinking, debating, ethics etc. so when there is a misused logical form or misused tense it is something I notice.

    The single thing that sets me off the quikest is the use of the “one who knows” tense. Stating experiences or opinions as facts. In logic there are specific examples of how you cannot use a specific to prove a general law.
    In this case saying that because I don’t get any value from, consider it an intellectual construct or that I have found something that works for me makes it a fact that The System is not objective knowledge.
    Even the way I say it is better just because out of habit it is hard to be so arbitrary.

    Such statements are arguementitive in their nature. I.E. They are making an argument. I did not miss the two sentences. I did observe the contradiction in form between the way other parts of the essay was written.

    It can be one of the fundemental misconceptions that to disagree is to disapprove. Writing is an effort. Actually thinking about and editing a response even more so. This is inherently a complement. If others fail to see this thats OK.

    Discussing the system is not a small point but a very large one. It covers the use of language, whether there is Objective knowledge and the nature of what is knowable and what is not. It also is an essential part of the Fellowship of Friends discussion. Whether The system itself has an existance and value seperate from Robert’s teachings and our own past experiences.

    I “gave up the system” for at least ten years. I returned to the system as part of my 12 step work.l later I also participated in an online group and wrote many essay’s and had many flame wars on related topics so my position is very clear both to me and I hope in the form I articulate it.
    Scott


  46. For those who may need a little ‘chili pepper’ in their non-pineal gland wiseacring concerning issues within the Fellowship of Friends not being able to be proved or disproved, here is is for the 3rd time (complete triad)

    BTW, after this court case, Troy Buzbee & non-fellowship of friends, now have a comfy little nest egg, compliments of Robert Burton’s ‘free will to not take neither of Neo’s pills’ worth nearly 1,000,000 dollars, thanks to the currently, still paying for it, members…

    Yes, having the sequence helps allot Siddiq, particularly with the strange feeling one gets when you write a check for the amount the mechanic asked for, then he taps you on the shoulder as you’re leaving and says ~

    “Do you think this check is enough, do you think I fixed everything that was broken, do you trust your car with anyone but me?”

    Read it and creep; shadows are great fun, particularly near revolutionary fronts.
    ____________________________________________

    Fellowship Of Friends-A Cult In Oregon House, California.
    Another lawsuit filed against F.O.F/Renaissance Vineyard &
    Winery, Robert Burton, Girard Haven, Abraham Goldman, Helga
    Ruth Mueller, and Clair Bowen–directors of Fellowship of
    Friends, Inc. The lawsuit brought by Troy Buzbee and filed
    on April 29, 1996 in the County of Yuba.
    Complaint for Damages is in Case # 060209
    1. Fraud
    2. Intentional infliction of emotional distress
    3. Negligent infliction of emotional distress
    4. Breach of fiduciary duty
    5. Negligent supervision
    6. Sexual misconduct with a minor
    7. Sexual harassment
    8. Wrongful discharge
    9. Negligence
    10. Failure to pay minimum wage
    11. Battery
    Fellowship Of Friends Cult – By Michelle M. Milligan
    “Within the pages of the case are facts and details concerning sexual
    and perverted acts practiced by Burton, his philosophies and
    ideologies expected of the members.”
    According to the case, Robert Burton, “The Teacher”, as referred to
    by members, began the corporation Fellowship of Friends in
    1971.
    The “Fourth Way philosophy is taught and practiced by the Fellowship
    of Friends.
    The location of The Fellowship of Friends herein referred to as the
    F.O.F. is in Oregon House, however the F.O.F. refers to their
    location rather as “The Renaissance”.
    Troy Buzbee’s father became a member of the F.O.F. in 1976. Richard
    Buzbee’s son Troy was only seven years of age. Richard Buzbee was
    told that if he paid his teaching payments each month and followed
    the tasks and suggestions of the teacher, Robert Burton that he would
    enter “the way,” become “conscious” and “immortal.” He was told that
    Burton was a “conscious being” and that he was “celibate.” He was
    told that he could trust Burton completely with his body and soul.
    From 1976 through May 1994 Troy’s father was a member of the
    Fellowship of Friends.
    As Plaintiff Troy Buzbee grew up he regarded Robert Burton as a God.
    According to the case distinction between Burton and Troy’s father
    were not clear to him at times. Troy Buzbee became a member on
    October 10, 1966 when he was 17 years of age, virgin.
    After Defendant Burton and Defendant corporation Fellowship Of
    Friends, INC’s factual representations and undue influence caused
    Troy Buzbee to lose his ability to think independently, he became
    increasingly subject to the domination, control and undue influence
    practiced, implemented, and used by said Defendants. In direct
    consequence of such deception, coercive persuasion, brainwashing and
    undue influence, Defendant Burton used Troy Buzbee, among hundreds of
    other young men, for the partial gratification of his satyriasis, an
    uncontrollable compulsion to engage in sexual conduct with scores, if
    not hundreds, of men. In addition thereof, Defendant Burton exploited
    Troy Buzbee for the provision of cheap labor, well under the minimum
    wage. Said exploitation continued off and on until the time when Troy
    Buzbee terminated his membership with Fellowship of Friends, Inc., in
    August 1994.
    Commencing in December 1986, Burton, would have “teaching dinners”
    during which he would ply Troy with alcoholic beverages. After one
    particular such meal in December 1986, Burton instructed Troy to come
    to Burton’s room and to shut and lock the door. Burton told Troy that
    Burton was “an angel in a man’s body”, and the gods wished for Troy
    to be close to Burton. Defendant Burton then held in an embrace.
    Defendant Burton said, “influence C wishes you to be close with
    me. “He repeatedly assured Troy that his “soul was not (his) body,
    and that the angels wished for (Troy) to be with (Burton).” Burton
    explicitly told Troy that the “angels” wanted Troy to disrobe, and
    the “angels” wanted Troy to submit to Burton’s sexual advances
    because Burton himself was an “angel”, a goddess in a man’s body.”
    Burton said to Troy, “I promise you I am an angel in a man’s
    body.” “You have to remember that I did not write the play about
    Robert Burton.” Burton would kiss Troy on the forehead which he said
    represented the seat of the soul and then instruct Troy to “separate”
    from his body and just “let go”. Burton reminded Troy that Troy’s
    body would soon decay while his soul was immortal. Burton told Troy
    that he would talk to him after he died using the same soft voice he
    used at the time. Burton explained that for him the interaction with
    Troy went beyond conventional sex and into “supersex”, which was a
    method characterological evolution. Defendant Burton stated, “My
    sexuality is on the level of Super-Sex.” From December ‘86–
    April ‘94, Troy submitted to Burton’s demands, which were: Drop out
    of college, provide Burton with sexual favors and provide hour long
    massages after Burton had been sexually serviced.
    Burton used money from the corporation to pay other members for
    performing specific sexual acts. In denominations of $50 or $100. The
    case mentions one case of “specific sexual acts” performed on Burton
    by Karl Feldman, Troy Buzbee’s best friend. Burton spoke openly about
    his sexuality in the form of jokes at the all-male dinners that he
    would often lavishly host at all-male, all-you-can-
    drink “symposiums.” He would boast that “one hundred boys would not
    be enough(for his sexual appetite).”Troy worked at the gatehouse on
    F.O.F. property. Burton directed certain members who are “guards” to
    arm themselves with firearm-type weapons. Burton then had him become
    his “personal” guard. During the next four years Troy observed
    numerous men in Burton’s room in a single night. Troy was asked to
    massage Burton after his lovers left.
    According to the case, Burton suffers from sexually transmitted
    diseases. He made no effort to tell Troy. As a consequence, Troy
    acquired viral herpes. In addition, Troy suffered from stomach
    ulcers. Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, Inc. was built as a bomb-
    shelter in obeisance to Defendant Burton’s prophecies regarding
    massive and wide-spread disaster and chaos in the near future.
    Defendant Burton uses Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, Inc as his alter
    ego in the same way he uses Defendant Fellowship Of Friends, Inc.
    According to the case…..
    At all times mentioned herein Defendants Girard Haven, Abraham
    Goldman (also an attorney), Helga Ruth Mueller, and Clair Bowen were
    members of the board of directors of the Defendant corporation,
    Fellowship Of Friends, INC.
    At all times mentioned herein all of the Defendants were acting as
    the agents and servants of each other and in doing the acts
    complained of acted within the scope of their agency and employment
    and at the direction and with the knowledge and ratification of the
    other Defendants.
    The Defendant Burton at all times mentioned herein, dominated,
    influenced, and controlled, and does now dominate, influence and
    control the Defendant corporations and the directors and officers
    thereof, as well as the business, property and affairs of the
    Defendant corporations.
    At all times mentioned herein, there existed and does now exist, a
    unity of interest and ownership between the Defendant Burton and the
    Defendant corporations; the individuality and separateness of said
    Defendant and Defendant corporations has ceased; and despite
    knowledge of these facts, Defendant corporations and its officers and
    directors have had notice of acquiesced in and agreed, consented to,
    and ratified the conduct of Defendant Burton as herein alleged, At
    all times since its corporation to the present time, the Defendant
    corporations have been and are now a mere shell and naked framework
    which the Defendant Burton has used and does now use as a conduit for
    the conduct of his personal business, property and affairs.
    Defendant corporations are subject to a unity of control, and its
    corporate structure was created as an attempt to avoid payment of
    taxes and civil judgments and to confuse courts and those seeking
    redress for these Defendant’s acts. Due to the unity of personnel,
    commingling of assets, and commonality of business objectives, these
    Defendant’s attempts at separation of Defendant corporations and
    Defendant Burton should be disregarded.
    Defendant Robert Burton directs, controls and operates Defendant
    corporations and uses them to enforce his orders and carry out his
    attacks on groups, agencies or individuals, including the acts
    against Troy alleged herein, to the extent there is no separate
    identity between Burton and said Defendant corporations and any claim
    of such separate identity should be disregarded.
    The Defendant corporations were created and are being continued and
    maintained pursuant to a fraudulent plant, scheme and device, created
    and operated by the Defendant Burton, whereby the benefits and
    product of the income and revenue of the Defendant corporations are
    diverted to the use and enjoyment of the Defendant Burton through the
    Defendant corporations to himself while concealing the truth of his
    financial relationship with Defendant corporations.
    Prior to the formation of F.O.F. and Renaissance Vineyard & Winery,
    Burton formed a conspiracy in concert between the corporations for
    the express purpose and intent of developing and implementing
    a plan and scheme which would permit Burton and co-conspirators to:
    a. use, abuse and exploit the fiduciary relationship between the
    Defendant Burton and the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends,
    INC,, on one hand and the members of and contributors to the
    Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC,, on the other hand
    for their own personal unlawful gain; and
    b. to use, abuse and exploit the fiduciary relationship between the
    Defendant Burton, as ‘founding minister’, and selective members of
    the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC., for the
    express purpose and intent of performing unlawful and perverted
    sexual acts upon the persons of said members, including Troy, and by
    causing certain of the members, including Troy, to work for Defendant
    corporation Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, INC., and Defendant
    corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC.
    That all times pertinent hereto, the Defendant corporation Fellowship
    Of Friends, INC., and the Defendant Renaissance Vineyard and Winery,
    INC, were formed and operated by Burton and said other Defendants for
    their sole and exclusive aggrandizement and to create an ambiance of
    neo-religious import which was and is currently being used by Burton
    and the other Defendants to manipulate, unduly influence, and control
    the minds, bodies, and the assets of the members of the Defendant
    corporations for the sole and exclusive purpose of 1) satisfying
    Burton’s satyriasis-his voracious appetite for perverted sexual
    pleasure and elegant life-style; and 2) diverting the contributions
    and donations of the membership to their own use and purposes.
    Members of the Fellowship are required to donate ever-increasing sums
    of money as they become further and further vested as members of the
    Fellowship with the caveat that when donations required of them are
    not timely and completely made their membership is either revoked or
    they become indentured servants of the Defendant corporation in
    residence at its principal place of business for nominal compensation
    and required to perform degrading menial tasks of a full-time basis
    at the whim and caprice of the Defendant Burton and other authorized
    representatives of the corporate Defendant Fellowship Of Friends,
    INC., and Defendant Renaissance Vineyard And Winery, INC. All
    donations made by members of the Fellowship are devoted either to the
    continuing worldwide recruitment of new and replacement members with
    fresh money to contribute to “the cause,” or the acquisition of
    assets, including but not limited to, Defendant Renaissance Vineyard
    and Winery, INC,, which are ostensibly being acquired for the use and
    benefit of the membership but which are in reality being acquired for
    the personal benefit and aggrandizement of Defendant Burton and some
    or all of the other individual Defendants named herein.
    Meanwhile, Defendant Burton annexes free and unfettered use and
    enjoyment in and to the assets of the Defendant corporation
    Fellowship Of Friends, INC., Defendant corporation Renaissance
    Vineyard And Winery, INC., and the benefits to be derived there from,
    including, but not limited to, the provision money for bribes to
    young male members to prostitute themselves in an intensification of
    Defendant Burton’s compulsion and demand for sexual servicing of his
    long-standing state of satyriasis.
    The entire, purpose, scope and extent of the aforesaid plan and
    scheme as implemented by said Defendants is to effectively deny the
    members of the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends,
    INC., not only the right to participate in its rituals and teachings
    on an ongoing basis but also, and of equal importance, to deny
    members of said Defendant corporation, including Plaintiff, of their
    just right to participate as beneficiaries entitled to use and enjoy
    the property of said Defendant corporation.
    Troy suffered from fright, horror, grief, shame, anger, humiliation,
    embarrassment, chagrin, disappointment, worry, self-loathing, self-
    betrayal and self distrust.
    Haven, Goldman Mueller, Bowen knew of all these afore-mentioned
    practices of Burton. They have agreed and abetted Burton in his
    efforts. They knew of Burton’s diseases and said nothing.
    At all times pertinent hereto, Defendant Burton, and the other
    Defendants, caused Troy’s mental and emotional centers to become
    deceptively and coercively inculcated with the following tenets:
    a. Defendant Burton communicated with “C-influence” which was
    provided by “44 angels” which were each individually named including,
    but not limited to, Jesus, “Benjamin Franklin,” “Lincoln” and “Bach,”
    and that Burton was the Fellowship’s only connection with
    said “angels.”
    b. Defendant was and is the most important person on the planet since
    Christ. Defendant Burton claims a numerology of consciousness where
    he has already advanced to a man number 7.3, with Christ being a man
    number 8. Burton is above man-made laws, a moral law unto himself.
    c. “C-influence” brought Troy to the Fellowship and Defendant Burton,
    and that Troy’s interactions with Defendant Burton would be the most
    important relationship that Troy could ever have.
    d. Defendant Burton is assisted by “C-influence” to guide the
    spiritual evolution of the member “students” with “shocks” designed
    to help them “awaken”.
    e. The members of the Fellowship are special, and set apart by higher
    forces for survival. Members of Defendant Burton’s “inner circle”
    must associate only among Fellowship members must disregard non-
    members, and demonize ex-members who are critical of Burton whom “the
    gods” will “destroy.” Such ex-members’ opportunities for growth and
    development are terminated failing to submit to Burton.
    f. Defendant Burton possesses gift of prophecy that is infallible.
    g. In 1998 California will “fall” in huge earthquake whereupon people
    will die in massive numbers.
    h. In 2006 there will be an Armageddon, where all humans everywhere
    except for members of the Fellowship will be expunged by higher
    forces.
    i. Members of the Fellowship will inherit the world’s material goods
    and act as the “Ark” for a new civilization based on that of the
    Greeks of about 450 B.C., and are thus presently preparing themselves
    to bear the torch of civilization now and in the future.
    j. By following Defendant Burton’s directives so as to gain “being”
    (depth of character) through separating from suffering and immersing
    themselves in culture, mostly Western art, classical music, opera and
    ballet, Fellowship members, including Troy, are preparing themselves
    for being the “Ark”.
    k. Everything the members of the Fellowship, including Troy, had
    learned since birth was “false” and caused him to exist in a kind
    of “waking sleep.” The Defendant Burton informed Troy that in order
    to “awaken”, he had to replace what was “false” with what was “true”
    which was defined as the system of ideas as The Fourth Way, including
    all the “new” knowledge that Burton had added to that system.
    l. Defendant Burton stated, and states, to the general Fellowship and
    to Troy, that without “C-influence” Troy could not “awaken”.
    m. Defendant Burton stated, and states, to the general Fellowship and
    to Troy, that to “awaken” was the only way to avoid having the
    purpose of his life be to provide “food for the moon.”
    n. Defendant Burton stated, and states, that Troy’s people outside
    the group as “life-people,” he said were “tragedies.” Burton said
    Troy’s own mother was such a “life-person” and that the Fellowship
    was Troy’s “real” family and Burton was his “Father.”
    o. Defendant Burton stated, and states, to the general Fellowship and
    to Troy, that any challenge to the extent of Burton’s excesses of
    greed and satyriasis to be a lack of understanding of his practice
    of “crazy wisdom” which he asserts that he must force himself to
    perform is forcing himself to live that way for the good of the
    members as a “lesson.”
    Wish to read the rest and complete story, and even proof?
    Send a self addressed long envelope, stamped to:
    Of, By & For The People Newspaper
    P.O. Box 1993
    Marysville, California 95901


  47. Gotta grab the 44 before HC does.


  48. on June 21, 2007 at 10:53 pm Howard Carter

    To Was KantleenW – 17

    “Howard Carter, have you carefully read Bass-Ackwards’posts? You seem like a sincere and thoughtful person, and my response to your post 638 was deep sadness. Sadness for you, for the part of each of us that is capable of that level of disconnect, and by extension, for the human race. I also think you are a brave person for continuing to put yourself out here”

    Still working on Bass’ recent posts.

    Why the deep sadness? I can assure you it’s being wasted on me; I can’t imagine anyone who lives a fuller and richer life than mine.

    I wonder what disconnect you are referring to? Many people disconnect from the school and then they spend a lot of energy trying to erase what they once knew. I think what’s happening here gets expressed a lot on this blog; people, once they decide to leave the school, remove from the realm of possibility the fact that the school just may be everything its claimed to be – an esoteric school for awakening. If you have made the assumption that it cannot be that anymore, or never was that then, of course, you would feel sad for someone like myself.

    What makes more sense to me is that the school did not fit your picture of what a school should be like, or Robert did not meet your picture of a conscious teacher. Or maybe awakening proved to be different that you thought.

    But in this wide, wide world where many things are possible (maybe all things, as Bach said) it would be a stretch to say it’s out of the realm of possibility for the school to be real. If you believe that tell me how you came to know it absolutely? It seems to me that it’s possible to deeply feel it, believe it, but to know it beyond all doubt?

    Just think of the different times people leave. One person stays for ten years then leaves because he/she discovers the school is not real. As they leave another joins and the unreal for one becomes the real for another. They leave thinking the school is not real and as they leave another discovers the realness of the FoF and joins, and some like myself don’t leave. The school for them remains as magical as the first day. And on and on for 38 years, not 38 months, but 38 years it continues, lacking of realness, mostly just duping people?

    When you look deeply into FoF you see injustices, corruption, uncaring. I see the same, but I also see the other, the miraculous, the hand of Influence C; a hand I admit I don’t always understand. Gurdjieff called the earth a pain factory. Can the school be spared from that? It would be wonderful if we could eradicate all the suffering and violence from the earth. Why does a plane full of bright eyed children going on a class trip crash? There is no answer that satisfies the logical mind. All events are necessary, or they would not occur. Every event that has transpired in the FoF was necessary.

    The real disconnect occurs when we value the events of this world more than those of the next world.


  49. #34

    Thanx Tim.

    I didn’t see that one. Wonderful!


  50. One of the greatest failings of Robert’s teaching is that although he has taught Self Remembering from the beginning the form of the Fellowship of Friends has become a denying force to realizing the reality of existing in the present. The reality is that self remembering is not being anything. It needs to include the acceptance of all of ones past and present. It is not about becoming but learning to be as one is. Acceptance is an integral part of being present.
    The forces of the Fellowship press on one to be a good student, to imitate the acts of others, behave as others, to look to the future for presence, to wait for Robert to recognize ones consciousness. Unfortunately Robert recognizes those that kiss his ass and accept his will. He does not tolerate or cultivate the development of individual conscience. He demands a form that is comfortable for him. To be means to give up becoming. It is not a negation of process is not what we will it is what is. It is what we experience as we exist on this journey that is at one time absolutely unique and personal and rigidly according to law.
    Scott


  51. unoanimo 44

    Gotta grab the 44 before HC does.

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

    Good work. Do you know how Burton came up with the number “44” conscious beings? Why not 45 (which is what HC had to settle for)? Hold the shift key on your keyboard and hit the “number four key” twice.


  52. on June 21, 2007 at 11:24 pm Devil's Dictionary

    THE SEQUENCE:
    This exercise lies at tht heart of The New FoF. Seems to me that if you don’t believe in it and don’t practice it assiduously there’s no real point in being in the FoF. Sure you can say “I don’t follow the current teaching but I remain for my friends” or whatever, but these buffers don’t last forever and students with severe doubts about the teaching usually leave eventually.

    So what is the sequence all about? Basically it’s six one syllable words that are intoned internally, followed by four breaths. So….I’m sitting here, I stop typing, I intone a sequence, I become present, I hold the presence during the four breaths.

    The result is that I am in fact more present during those breaths than before I began the sequence.

    So what’s the problem?

    Firstly, the grandiose claims that are made for this exercise – that it’s been practiced by “real schools” since the dawn of time, that it’s a unique rediscovery by Mr. Burton, that it is the only or best path to consciousness, etc. The historical and pre-historical claims are just plain silly. And in fact there are many “spiritual exercises” that can produce similar results, as anyone who has tried them knows.

    Secondly, where does the sequence lead to? This is left very vague. The idea seems to be that if one performs enough sequences a permanent change will occur after which one will be a “conscious being”, a “man number 5”. The trouble is that there is no evidence of this ever having happened. And in fact if you do try the sequence fervently and frequently one thing you see is that the experience of presence is always temporary, in fact brief, and that the only way to be continuously present would be to be continuously making the requisite effort. And clearly this is impossible! Thousands of us have been making unrelenting efforts to be present for decades, with no result other than the usual few moments of presence. I speak from my own experience – I really, really tried to to make it work.

    A student might say: that’s all I want, just those few moments of presence occasionally – it’s better than nothing. I say: you don’t need the FoF with all its corruption, lies and vanity to achieve those moments. You can achieve it alone, or join with others in a simple, healthy spiritual group.

    Good luck to all, not that we need it! DD


  53. Howard Carter (45): “The real disconnect occurs when we value the events of this world more than those of the next world.”

    An extraordinary statement that succinctly sums up everything that’s wrong with the FoF (and Christianity).

    Let’s live in this world, not the next – it’s all there is!


  54. #41 Cathie

    Yes. Ken Wilber’s enterprise Integral Institute came into my world at about the same time as this blog. It is like someone picked up a big pile and threw it against the fan. It is intersesting to look at all that is going on from a larger, impersonal scale (what in hell is going on?).
    Oddly enough Wilber, at least in part, has come from an Advaitist lineage yet he has put together a complex, comprehensive conceptual framework (a sort of “all and everything” for the 21st century.)

    I was invited to participate in a conference call on saturday in response to a question I submitted regarding the relationship between the concept of “shadow” which Wilber uses and “pain-body” which Tolle uses. Should be interesting.


  55. Post #45

    I rest my case… I knew he waz vulturing tha 44!

    hee hee

    :) word!


  56. #42 A Former Student

    Do we need to be right? It seems that way sometimes but it hasn’t happened yet, and in my current understanding it never will.

    Logic and critical thinking are not a strong suit in me yet I love reading peoples posts that do have them developed. Especially when they are being used to support some retarded, fantastical, illogical and mind-numbing absurdity.

    IMO this does not apply to you. I enjoy your posts.

    I just hope my attitude does not cause me to crystallize in the lower hydrogens of my moribund lower self separating me irrevocably from my higher center’s vehicle astral projecting to my 2nd life (by the way, good one DD, on the “logical” absurdity of taking on a conscious “role” i.e. Elizabeth 1) and instead due to my constant identifying and imagination because of my weak will and slavish succombing to my chief feature of non-existence (my favorite one after vanity) my fate will instead be an eternity as a puff of moon dust forever lamenting: “I shoulda tried harder” Oh Lordy Lord.


  57. on June 22, 2007 at 12:09 am Howard Carter

    To: Oh no, #44

    I think you were the one circling around; I don’t pay attention to those things; but in any case the puppeteers were certainly doing their jobs.


  58. Howard Carter 45

    “I think what’s happening here gets expressed a lot on this blog; people, once they decide to leave the school, remove from the realm of possibility the fact that the school just may be everything its claimed to be – an esoteric school for awakening.”

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

    Your teacher is a crystallized sociopath. This is where his strength comes from and his ability to control those around him, to overwhelm their many ‘I’s with his own aim to satisfy himself above all other aims. Burton’s ‘I’s are crystallized and focused on his own satisfaction at any cost to others, at any inconvenience to them and even at the infliction of any pain that it may produce for anyone else. You can’t yet completely live like he does because the higher parts in you still function to a small degree, you still have doubts about your actions when it comes to victimizing others to satisfy your own greed, your own desire for power and recognition or to satisfy your lusts. You still have a tiny conscience that can feel the horror of becoming a completely self-serving beast by going against the little spark of humanity that feels empathy for another. Your teacher no longer has such feelings and is therefore convinced that everything he does to serve his lust, his greed and his need for power is in accord with the best interests of the universe. Crystallized self-loving beasts have power over those with a naive, uncertain sense of wanting something spiritual, something outside the mainstream, because such people are typically not householders, meaning that they do not understand right from wrong. For them right and wrong, helping people as opposed to using or victimizing people, is always “relative” to the wants of their leader. But a genuine ‘conscious being’ only helps people, he does not control them and he does not help those that do not yet definitely understand right from wrong because they will use the energy they gain for selfish ends. The Burtons of the world are easy to find, but a real “teacher” of the work is likely not so available. They are especially unavailable to mindlessly loyal followers because such people are useless for anything but crimes against themselves and others. You exist in a gray phantom zone where the borderline criminals, the innocent criminals, gradually lose their ability to feel the way up from the way down. You are a little worm of a thing circling the edge of the abyss, the event horizon, of a black hole of a human vacuum. He is immortal, yes, but immortally dead. He is a thing with no conscience and certainly no connection to genuine higher beings. He is a puppet of such beings, they use him to test some people and make them stronger while destroying others, those that cannot wake up to the first principles of human decency. Your conscience, your humanity, is in the process of being destroyed (like this):

    From Girard Haven:

    Page 576, “Creating A ‘Soul’”:

    “In particular, if he [Robert Earl Burton] knows what he is doing and we don’t, we have no basis for judging or doubting him. Instead, we simply have to trust him, as a child trusts his parents, or dog trusts its master. If he asks us to do things which seem to have no connection to awakening–or even to be ‘wrong’–we have no choice but to do them anyway.”

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

    “And on and on for 38 years, not 38 months, but 38 years it continues, lacking of realness, mostly just duping people?”

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

    Scientology has been around a lot longer and they have a lot more money, so they must be even more conscious than Burton, right?


  59. 36 A Former Student.
    Shakespeare was commisioned in the same way that many other artists were such as Leonardo. Now we know you’re a logical kind of guy so you might wish to research that. Before refuting it. In Wils case he was commisioned to write a series of poems for a young man whose parents wanted him to have children. Most of the Investigators seem to agree that the first seventeen sonnets were commisioned in this way for the same young man. Theres even speculation that in spending so much time focused on this young man that he fell in love with him. But thats what it is speculation, and speculation as you know, is just imagination without hard facts. Thats something that bothers me about logical argumentation the more “facts” one can dig up the better ones argument. Problem is that facts change, it was once a hard fact that the world was round and you would be pecked to death for daring to suggest otherwise. In a more prosaic way he was saying stop wanking and start fornicating or you will die without progeny.
    I know it doesnt have the same profundity and one can read the things you say into it but thats what it is, reading things into it. Strangely enough i prefer your interpretation its more meaningfull for us. Was he the Earl of Southhampton was he Philip Marlowe was he gay who really cares, we take meaning and beauty from him and are inspired by him anyway.
    “all the world knows this but none knows well to shun the heaven that leads men to this hell”. You have to love the guy. I do too. Cy.
    45. Howard Carter.
    how many other schools have you experienced in order to have relativity? Cy.


  60. 55

    There aren’t many of your posts I agree with completely, but you are dead on when you say RB is a sociopath. One of the indication of socio pathology is the “charm” aspect, as well as a severely underdeveloped if not entirely absent sense of conscience. Remember Scott Peterson, Rev. Jones, Rajneesh, Adida (Buba Free John), Warner Ehrhart, the guy from Children of Christ etc. And they all had that similar patronizing smile and conscious act, while they greedily filled their pockets and beds, with their sycophants forever trumpeting their quasi-divinity.


  61. Except for Scott Peterson, he was just a murderer and philanderer.


  62. on June 22, 2007 at 12:43 am Howard Carter

    To Rhino Neal – 50

    Howard Carter (45): “The real disconnect occurs when we value the events of this world more than those of the next world.”

    “An extraordinary statement that succinctly sums up everything that’s wrong with the FoF (and Christianity).

    Let’s live in this world, not the next – it’s all there is!”

    Ryan, you forgot a few:

    Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, Egyptian, Mesoamerican, Daoism.


  63. on June 22, 2007 at 12:56 am Howard Carter

    Cyclops – 56,

    “how many other schools have you experienced in order to have relativity? Cy.”

    At any given time there is probably only one functioning school on earth. If so who has the kind of relativity you speak about?

    How do salmon get back to the river they hatched in after traveling hundreds, thousands of miles?

    How many bites do you need to know if the pie tastes good?


  64. A former student #47

    “It (self-remembering) needs to include the acceptance of all of ones past and present. It is not about becoming but learning to be as one is. Acceptance is an integral part of being present.”

    I’ll second that. You have to have a self to remember! That means you have to accept all the ‘selves’ from the past, even the idiot ones you don’t like and want to forget about. All the little ‘selves’ make up the fourth dimensional time-body; that’s what you re-member or stick together to make being.

    Since this blog, this is how I have transformed the pain that I did not allow myself to feel from back then, which has been substantial.

    first force: something in my surroundings triggers an unpleasant memory

    second force: my awareness regresses inwardly to the images and pain associated with the memory, taking me out of the present and back to the past

    third force: my higher centers kick in, I close my eyes for a moment, feel the pain, choose to accept myself and my failings with compassion, then open my eyes to expand my awareness outwardly and transform the pain as moments of clarity or self-remembering without effecting my mood in a negative way, and often with tears welling up. At that moment I feel complete and in an altered, energized, state. (being) It ‘tingles’ and feels good.

    Another choice regarding the pain of one’s past is to buffer and bury the pain. But the unresolved pain usually resurfaces requiring yet another effort to rebury it. Thus, there is a net energy loss or emptiness, leaving one in an incomplete state of depression, and in constant need of ego compensation(always becoming).


  65. A long time ago I compared the ‘staying in presence’ exercises of the Fellowship of Friends with the practice of mindfulness. Another interesting meditation is the repetition of the word om/aum, it may be worth checking out (and trying out) for those of you who see potential in the sequence.

    The story about a young child repeating a word for so long that it produced a higher state is especially meaningful to me.


  66. 60 Howard Carter. “At any given time there is probably only one functioning school on earth. If so who has the kind of relativity you speak about?”
    Now i realise howard, you are deeply in love with what you consider to be a school but your ” probably” suggests uncertainty. Whereas i have relativity, having spent long enough in your group and as close as a man can get to another man to your leader, then have experienced the real thing elsewhere.
    Salmon know the way perhaps even genetically and magnetically but still many die on the way, some are caught by ( very cunning fishermen ) ive even seen them be dynamited out of the water or be caught by bears and many simply dont have what it takes, you see them lying dying in the shallows.
    You know if a pie tastes good with one bite but if you try a number of pies you might find one you prefer, also just by taste its hard to tell if the pie isnt poisoned.
    good luck to you H.
    and now for something completely different.
    Conversation between Jesus and an Advaitist.
    Jesus “straight is the way and narrow is the gate that leadeth to heaven and few there be that find it”.
    Advaitaist. ” there is no gate no way , no way, and why do you talk like that.” Cy.


  67. 64 Whalerider. Amen. To all of that. Lou Reed once had an album called Transformer. cy


  68. Howard Carter (63): “At any given time there is probably only one functioning school on earth.”

    Howie, you’re excelling yourself today! Sorry, but this statement is truly beyond comment.


  69. Hello Joel ~ Post 625/12

    Yes, the blog can be a conscious tool and is actually building something non-self-referential and its ‘core’ is present freedom, now, as it is to be seen, not dominated by a magnifying glass and the opposite end of a telescope.

    Beautiful gesture; after all, it was Ouspensky who suggested that we can change the past by bringing presence to it, a certain kind of conscious intent…

    What better place to verify this than outside the Fellowship of Friends?

    _________________________________

    To Joe Average & Former Student ~ Posts #626 & #644/12, and ‘Bass Ackwards Post #645/12.

    I would say, keep your guns well oiled, rusty revolvers leads to Relative Awakening and a certain kind of extraordinary ‘King of Diamonds’ complacency for the tap root of Argument itself;

    which often says, ‘Why go to all the trouble to pull the tap root out, when you can just kill the plant?’

    Few Intellectual types know the difference between the idea of a light bulb and a tulip bulb, one dies on its own, the other gives multiple births of ‘itself’ before it dies.

    This is one of the great fallacies of The Fellowship of Friends, lower center controlled meetings:

    How are you to transform ‘form’ if you are not permitted to give birth to it in the first place?

    Oh, I see, that’s what Lincoln Lodge/Apollo D’Oro was/is for, to ‘seem so’ though ‘knot it’, to let out all that ‘construction desire’ back from the heights of a conscious eagerness of one’s presence, meeting up with hell itself, with a constructive spirit, back down into where it came from, drowning it in food, wine, gossip, hope, talking about what is important, what was important, what you cannot do, what you would, could, should have done and the ongoing belief in one’s self as a contradictory reflection in a bi-focal mirror who cannot say ‘I’ without an opposite ‘I’ defining itself as the same ‘I’. And of course all the wiseacring about how tough a role Robert Burton has keeping the level of wiseacring refined and dominated.

    No thanks Robert Burton, yet, your deeper being is getting clearer by the deeds of your students as well, particularly those who can read 5000+ posts and still dodge their conscience like a nuclear physicist does when saying,

    “Hey, don’t look at me, what Hiroshima? I’m not the one who invented the ‘Ready to Arm’ button!”

    ______________________________________

    BTW… Nisargadatta is not dead.

    ___________________________

    Hello Joseph G. ~ Post 19/13

    You wrote ~

    “Perhaps the fundamental ethical or moral corruption intrinsic to Robert’s predatory sexual behavior in his role as spiritual leader was bound to result in a meltdown of the integrity of his teaching sooner or later.”
    _______________

    “Perhaps… bound to…” Hummmm. ?

    My friend, you were the only valuable intent in your pursuits within the Fellowship of Friends, the ‘stuff’ that fluffed off now and then was objective pollen, bound to launch itself into your sinuses no matter how you shook the tree and who did it;

    intent, deed, these are where the Fellowship of Friends is a body without a ‘brain’, a vegetable whose unfortunately (or fortunately) stuck in a garden surrounded by carnivorous rabbits, allergic to anything that does not flow blood through its veins.
    _______________________________

    Hello Siddiq ~ Post #26/13

    You wrote ~

    “Beyond all of that are how to spend my life well, in our moment to moment struggle. Being here, I feel I can do more, contribute more and gain more. That is why I stay. Not because it is perfect…”
    _______________________

    You mean, ‘Not because I aim towards spiritual perfection…’ don’t you?

    If you cannot follow your consciousness, your sense of the information gathered from True Personality and all that it implies for you, concerning this ‘pain factory’ called Earth & your particular incarnation into it, alongside you, your ‘self’, as a present being in this now, always now, then you will remain

    “in our moment to moment struggle”;

    BTW, there is no ‘moment to moment’, there are intervals in your perceptions, yet, there is only one moment Siddiq, aging confuses the Soul that the body is indeed the gauge to happiness or sadness, something Robert Burton has not taught anyone behind the guard house.

    Shop on Robert, shop on!

    Siddiq, do not hold such high regard for the ‘form’ of the school, its subjective and objective corresponding synchronization to your own ‘form’ (body of mechanics), because, as ‘that form’ you can relate to most of the injustices of the Fellowship of Friends, yet, it too, can rightly wiseacre that it is “just friction from C-Influence”, the same “Realtor of wiseacring’ can say that your ‘form’ (machine) is also justifiable friction from the Gods;

    hence, if you’re working against not being the machine, then how is it that you support and pay to propagate the mechanical aspects of the portion of your life that you ‘call’ a conscious school and a conscious being, yet can certainly hear no echo of conscious being deed-fact back?

    No, my friend, you do not trust your own contradictions to be fully revealed, so stay in, this is what Schools of Relative Awakening are for, relativity, not personal objectivity. So, as you’re getting, what is your conscience giving, particularly to newer students that have yet to stumble over the 800 pound gorilla, under the galleria carpet?

    Do you tell them to separate, (conscience from consciousness or head from neck)… What would you tell your daughter if Robert asked you to allow one of his ‘boys’ to marry her, ‘separate, my love, the feminine I’ve raised with all my everything, its the will of the gods, not my will, I am not a god’ ~ which implies what?

    Automatically, brothers and sisters do not truly complete the octave of seeing one another, revealing what they always felt about this and that, he and she, could, should, would, till the parents die: this is the Fellowship of Friends story,

    fortunately, in a real school, with a real teacher, this can be done before anybody physically dies.

    Physical death will not change your level of being.

    I wish you well Siddiq, though as a stand alone impression, you’re not a natural cowboy, not that you need to be one, though, for the fun of esoteric experimentation ~

    I would advise you to by a horse, a big 10 gallon hat, boots, spurs, gloves and a canteen and go for a ride, did I forget the King’s wardrobe? Yes, I did, the king is only ‘king’ when he is alone, unread, so to speak…

    I still cannot wiseacre anyone paying $100 + dollars to have a picture taken with Robert Burton; I mean ‘real’ photographs are expensive enough, particularly when you’re one of the boys who gets sent back to Russia for saying ‘no’ to the teacher and not being ‘available at all times’; then hauls you back, for Part 2, another chance.

    Siddiq, you will be surprised, I guarantee it, to find that “staying is nowhere” ~ Rilke. That the very forces that keep the School of Affirmations and comfortable friendships afloat is the cannon ball that was unconsciously contracted in the beginning to sink it;

    this is a law, it cannot be bent, particularly when its being supported by the cannon ball maker himself, posing as a Priest.

    _______________________________________

    Hello Scott: ~ Posts #33 & #36/13

    You wrote ~

    “Self remembering is freedom not slavery.
    Given the very best interpretation Robert Burton has created a school of the 2nd way based on total giving up of will and belief in his divine status.”

    Then concerning Shakespeare ~

    “What do you think this means?”

    ______________________________

    No, my friend, based on where the core deeds originate from, their intent, malicious nature and damage to essence or the feeding of damaged essence, Robert Burton has not created any Way, period.

    Originally all the Ways 1,2,3,4 were created and orchestrated by self-less conscious beings, we cannot here, particularly here, attach any historical lineage to what has come to light concerning the true level of being and core-intent of The Fellowship of Friends;

    learning something by ‘default’ is one way and at times it can be serendipitously ‘a high time’ when one can have his or her cake and eat it too, yet, as my Grandmother taught me, eventually your teeth fall out and you have a heart attack due to clogged arteries.

    BTW… Self Remembering actually ‘is’ a kind of prison, yet more like a daycare center with considerably high walls, particularly when it is touching the Pain Body desire for argument, severity, judgment, drama shopping, negative and positive projection, buffers, etc.

    It’s the triad, I believe you’re speaking about, seeming like a prison; yes, the hierarchical format of The Fellowship of Friends is a prison both for undeveloped essence and the conscious education of it; yet, ironically enough, such a place as the Fellowship of Friends (which could be gotten one way, by applying one’s conscious trans-formative aims to Life itself or raising a child or being ‘good’ at your tasks, 360 degree that is)

    the hard-knock education will be gotten through its (FoF) undercurrent, that is, if you know there is one, otherwise, you can surf all your life in the baby waves and never find yourself in it: that’s okay too, just keep it real if you have the conscious choice to do so.

    I am sure that many felt prison-like in the midst of Gurdjieff, The Ouspensky’s, Orage, etc. Yet these feelings are legitimate due to our ‘predicament’ down here and can be handled with the right triad, not exploited, custom manicured and accepted in some and not in others based upon the size of your ‘equipment’ or lack thereof.

    To me, Shakespeare is speaking about Self Calming, particularly the type that supports hypocrisy, ulterior motives, meaning one thing and saying another, confusing people because you can, etc. I also suspect he directly points to the self calming art of masturbation as well, i.e.,

    “For having traffic with thyself alone”,

    some might interpret ‘traffic’ as ‘imagination’, though personally, I sense Shakespeare was a more visceral, a root around in the mud type, similar to Baudelaire, not Byron.

    ______________________________________

    Oh, BTW, you might ask Adayshanti, regarding his failed attempts to awaken at sitting for long periods of time, meditating, etc. (at getting particular results)… What did he do with the built up energy at the end of the daily line?

    This ‘energy’ is often created by working against impatience, expectations, yearning to have now, etc.
    Also, mentally perceived ‘failure’ at the end of an expectation, creates this ‘energy’ and a corresponding automatic desire to release it, or compliment it’s mental picture with some physical feeling (picture) in/of the body.

    Ask him whether he had some ritual of self calming after or between these ‘tasks’, even speaking to others concerning it (emotional releases), this could have thwarted certain ‘results’; yet, fear not, what ‘is’, will rock our world one way or the other…

    After all, when is it that a cotton ball can bring down a mad dog?

    After its dipped in water and frozen.

    ___________________________

    Hello Eyes Wide Shut ~

    You and Veronicapoe, yes, I hope you two are
    working on an aim to do and not simply an appeal to
    our easily satisfied King of Hearts.

    I support you, form and spirit.

    ________________________________

    Love to you all.


  70. on 22 Jun 2007 at 12:22 am
    59 cyclops
    36 A Former Student.
    Shakespeare was commisioned in the same way that many other artists were such as Leonardo. Now we know you’re a logical kind of guy so you might wish to research that. Before refuting it.

    Actually I have researched it before saying it. One more than one occasion. Any search of william Shakespeare will produce a vast quantity of references. The fact is there are few facts. It is as you poimt out argued that he was Sr. Francis Bacon,also that he wrote or edited parts of the KIng James Bible which shares some of the elegance of his language.

    There are certain assumptions in my theoretical perspective. In writing a review of any piece the critical perspective and assumptions are important.

    Mine have been pointed out numerous times but apparantly you did not connect then to this specific.
    Assumptions-
    1) Self remembering is a fact-
    2) the 6 processes are facts
    3) the system is a fact
    )The Law of 7 and three are facts
    5) the enneagram and its relationships as expored by Rodney Collin are facts

    Now it is certainly possible to refute these “facts” but for the sake of this argumnet these are my assumptions. Thus taken as “facts”.

    So what follows logically from these assumptions. From my perspective of being able to recognize these “facts” in beings of at least the same level or hifgher level than myself. I was able to recognize self remembering and the experience of highje4r centers in Shakespeare work around 1973. I have spent time on and off over the last 34 years reflecting on them. I have memorized them, recited them, Looked up obscure words and done my best to understand them.

    The Sonnets are works of objective Art they discuss the information that I specified. This is the same information inherent in all objective art as it is objective information. Anyone whose being is insufficent to recognize self remembering cannot have a meaningful opinion on The Sonnets. They will attempt to understand them at their own level, be inable to understand them. This is an absolute Law. Man #1,#2 and #3 cannot comprehend the experience of Man #4 and higher. Man #4 can begin to underestand according to their ability to self remember.

    This is what seperates the conscious and mechanical circles of humanity. The ability to recognize reality. To me this begins with self remembering.

    Why should you be right and all these scholars wrong? I am more conscious. Self remembering is a fact to me. This is one attribute of man#4. It does not matter what language you use what words. Self remembering descibes not only a state but the process. It is through self remembering that we develop and man #4 is man in transition. Man #4 is man becoming. Man #4 has the ability to grow. Man #4 contains and is the living seedof a soul. Man #4 is moving towards individuality, Unity and will.

    This is all in the Sonnets as is so much more. What if Shakespeare was not one man but a commitee of a higher invisible school. The same school that influenced The King James Bible. Perhaps called Freemasons.

    I think it is in “Loves Labor Lost” that a school is described.
    Is the taming of the Shrew a tale of how to control the King Of Hearts? How much body type information is in the plays?
    You would think a real shool with 1000’s of students would have answers to these. If not why?

    Just Like the crap Gerard Haven writes. Regurgitated exactly as Robert shovals it. Almost the same lack of wit and personality that he had 30 years ago. The same delivery of totally uninspired information as if was deeply profound. I would challange him if he is conscious to give us some verification from his own being. What about Rodney Collin’s tables in “the Theory of Celestal Influence” I mean hell this is graduate of the California Institute of Technology, this is probably in his essense. Where is a 4th way physics. Is Rodney Collins revised table of the elements verifiable?

    I mean don’t any of you get it this is all information that has been out there from the beginning. What did the traveling teachers, the journals, the news letters cover. The same thing over and over because that’s where Robert has been for 30 years . Stuck at one level of being and Now even this is beginning to fade. His license plate video was pitiful.

    Okay maybe Robert can justify not being able to describe the action of the 3 forces or the understanding of the Enneagram but if this is the highest school on Earth why do so many students of Mr. Burton appear to know shit about the Laws of world creation and maintainence? Gurdjieff was clear on this as well as the nature of objective art. Why can’t Fellowship members recognize objective Art? It appears as Frank Zappa said about music and the average listener they would not reconize it for themselves if it came and bit them on the ass. May be Robert lacked the being to teach it because he was never as conscious as he claimed.


  71. on June 22, 2007 at 3:12 am Comic Relief

    To all the “next world”ers,

    After all these thousands of years and billions of suckers later, haven’t we developed our BS meters enough to run the other way when we are told to “Do what I/We tell you for the rest of your life, and you will receive your reward — in the next world.” ?!?!?

    If not, you can cosole yourselves with this perceptive observation:

    “Here is the test to find whether your mission on earth is finished. If you’re alive, it isn’t.” Richard Bach


  72. For those of you who are curious about the real identity of Shakespeare: Edward de Vere. The evidence is overwhelming. He was the 17th Earl of Oxford.


  73. on 22 Jun 2007 at 2:09 am

    70 a former student
    Just let me apologise for not being able to edit this last post I was using a coffee shop computer and the blog was in small type and I did not use a word processer.
    Scott


  74. unoanimo:

    don’t count your chickens before awaiting moderation is done

    44 is mine at the moment

    word


  75. 40

    “the first thing necessary for any of the methods to work was to gain control over the expression of negativity. Without this, all other work is futile.”

    This sounds just like one of the pimps who lived in the boy cottage when I was there.

    That whole line is a primary part of the horse’s blinders my friend. Keeps everyone in line and quiet, just the way it’s designed. No negativity, do the sequence, pay your payments, keep your mouth shut and feed the Queen. Any questions and,,, you’re “losing the work”. Give me a f*****g break.


  76. And you’re right, I never bought the whole gig. I got what I came for and left.


  77. Bruce 74 (until it changes after moderated posts are released, there has to be a better system)

    40

    “the first thing necessary for any of the methods to work was to gain control over the expression of negativity. Without this, all other work is futile.”

    This sounds just like one of the pimps who lived in the boy cottage when I was there.

    That whole line is a primary part of the horse’s blinders my friend. Keeps everyone in line and quiet, just the way it’s designed. No negativity, do the sequence, pay your payments, keep your mouth shut and feed the Queen. Any questions and,,, you’re “losing the work”. Give me a f*****g break.

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

    Anyone can readily verify that a negative man is under more laws than a positive man. Simply observe human nature and various kinds of people, the sour negative man eventually attracts a sour negative life. The motivated, positive man finds the initiative to build something worthwhile for himself. Being negative as a habit is the line of least resistance. Many of us are generally negative because we cannot sustain the effort to find positive motivation, we express our negativity because we cannot help it. We are not doing anything and we have made no conscious choice in the action. “It” is doing us. No intelligently sane man would intentionally choose to feel negative much of the time and yet many do feel negative much of the time.

    At the same time, it is crazy to allow yourself to be shamelessly exploited and pretend that the game is all about not complaining while trying to convince yourself that it is “good.” This is one of the cult-mentality mechanisms, namely masochism, which keeps places like the Fellowship going for nearly four decades. “I’m dissatisfied but it is my fault because I am not pretending hard enough to like all the ‘advantages’ (cult trappings) of the school,” this variety of thinking is voluntary enslavement.


  78. I make no excuses for my life. I like what I’m living, I love what I do, I’m happy with what I’ve made, and I wouldn’t have it any other way than how it is. If I died tomorrow I’d have no regrets. I’m ready for any aspect of the continuum, and part of it all is not having to have any patience with the bull shit (40) that’s propounded as “the Way” according to RB, and in a more indirect way, I will, at each offered opportunity, call it the way I see it.

    One of the ways one can do, even if the “play is written” is to take responsibility when it’s offered to do or say what one thinks is right. That’s what I do.


  79. 76

    “Anyone can readily verify that a negative man is under more laws than a positive man. Simply observe human nature and various kinds of people, the sour negative man eventually attracts a sour negative life.”

    And that’s more of the same bull shit. If you look deeply, using that as a criteria is deeply flawed. “Negativity” may make you uncomfortable, and you have the right to avoid it. “Positivity” (as the FOF sees it) if viewed with the same criteria can often be seen as just as mechanical and in some cases psycho pathological, as in blinding oneself to reality and allowing one to be played like a cheap violin.


  80. Bruce 78
    76

    “Anyone can readily verify that a negative man is under more laws than a positive man. Simply observe human nature and various kinds of people, the sour negative man eventually attracts a sour negative life.”

    And that’s more of the same bull shit. If you look deeply, using that as a criteria is deeply flawed.

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

    Why, because it bounced off the wrong side of your brain? I’m not going to ask you to explain your reaction because I’m not all that interested (and what you’ve said in full does not make your case clear), but the word (normally one word) “bullshit” is not a rational argument or an effective vehicle for communicating a better point of view. It is just a negative reaction that gets ejected into the atmosphere to dismiss a threat against the mentally constructed reality we each rely on to keep us comfortable. Instead of controlling the emotions and making the effort to clarify one’s own feelings, then subsequently explaining what one feels is a finer view of things, there is this lazy habit: “bullshit.” An impression comes in, hits the tender side of the formatory apparatus and the emotional center sends out the automatic buffer that was borrowed through imitation while in the impressionable days of youth likely from one’s brilliant father.

    Sorry for all the “ones” in there, just do not feel like constructing sentences that use an alternate at the moment.


  81. There’s a story that illustrates how I,personally, feel about life.

    Two students were outside of the guru’ magnificent dwelling waiting to see the master. One was very serious, trying to remember his aim and the techniques of his particular group. He was always the serious one. He tried very hard to be the words. The other one was chasing butterflies, making jokes, not being serious at all. The serious student watched the smart ass out of the corner of his eye, unanble to not judge him.

    After a long wait the guru signaled the serious one to come in. “What can I do for you’ the guru said. The student said “Please tell me oh wise one, how many more lives must I live”? The guru scratched his beard, fondled his gold jewelry, and said “two more lives’. The student said thank you and walked out, all the while grinding his teeth, wondering how he has failed, and how unworthy he must be. He brushed by the smart ass without even seeing him.

    The guru was standing by the door and said “ok, you can come in.” The student smiled and followed him. “I suppose you also want to know how many lives you have left”. The wiseacre just shrugged his shoulders. The guru said “Do you see that tree, do you see all the leaves on it? That’s how many lives you have to go”. The student smiled and said “Is that all”? and left to further pursue his joyous day.

    I live my life passionately and vehemently. I love what I love strongly and without reserve. I dislike hypocrisies and BS the same way. I love my friends, my work, my family just as passionately. I’ve never enjoyed my life more than I am now. I proud of my life and my decision making. If one wishes to interpret my life as sour and negative, go for it. I wouldn’t trade it for anyone else’s.


  82. on June 22, 2007 at 7:14 am Bass Ackwards

    Hello Fellow Blog Democrats,

    A special thanks to Spencer St. Clair [12/#266 & 349], I find your posts beautiful, inspiring, and true.
    ***********************************************
    Whale Rider, even way back to your first explosion, there is no way to thank you, but thanks is not the issue, is it? Truth is. And ultimately, Truth is so very personal yet objective at the same time.
    ***********************************************
    To Siddiq [# 28]
    Yes, I have tried the Sequence. I use it regularly. I think it is great! But I am not in imagination about it’s profundity. Indian Masters have used Mantras and Meditation – with relativity – for centuries to quiet the Mind. Our spiritual poverty exists in the Teacher not using his time to explain to us where we are going by using it, what it should feel like, how it feels to him in terms of states, inspiring us with his own profound understanding, etc…
    ***********************************************
    To Old Fish in the C [#41]
    Thanks for adding to the myth list. I agree with your comments also. The issue does come down to Conscience and the multifarious ways in which it can (and should) express itself within a true School.
    ***********************************************
    See next post for Myth #2


  83. on June 22, 2007 at 7:15 am Bass Ackwards

    Myth #2 from the thread: [12/#197 & #385 & 13/#20]

    The other 80 billion people on the planet are sleeping machines, doomed, without Self-Remembering, to a double death

    A very Fourth Way formulation (“machines they are born, machines they die”) with a bit of an RB special, hell-fire-and-brimstone element to it, don’t you think? The issue connects to some of the myth #1 debunking of post #385, so I won’t bother to repeat myself too much now. That there is life, that there is the effort to be present to it, that few people know about being Present or are interested in it, can be easily verified. Go to any grocery store, pub, or shopping mall and just Be. You can quickly see for yourself. But formatory thinking and feeling can cut Conscience short right here, if you believe that the students in this School are the only other ones on this planet who are working with a Conscious Teacher, persuing Conscious Influence. Besides that essential reservation, there is an issue even more devisively fundamental.

    Thus, to probe to a deeper level means to ask yourself about the essence of Life itself, the essence of Consciousness itself, and the essence of Conscience. What does your heart tell you? Not your Jack of Hearts and wishful thinking, but rather a heart that can recognize Truth in yourself and in another person. While it may be true that not everyone has the play to fan their own divine spark into a flame in this lifetime, do we need to devalue the little spark that does exist in other “sleeping machines” in order to fan our own? Isn’t it as if we have we been encouraged to develop an almost King of Clubs kind of coldness towards other “sleeping life people”? Understanding that we are esoterically superior, and so we call this “rising above Feminine Dominance”? But why do even the Sufis use the word Love as a Key for Presence? Do we only Love other students? And isn’t one of the main aspects of the true experience of Higher Centers a state of Connectedness, of Unity, of Love, without personal preferences?

    The point in all of this is to try to photograph how we have been taught to feel about other people who are not in the School, and to understand how that distance affects our own effort to embrace the Present. As usual, we tend to easily separate how others may feel about such distinctions (which is ‘real’ work on Feminine Dominance), not realizing the spiritual poverty we have placed ourselves in by drawing such distinctions in the first place. How can we possibly come to an understanding, a state of Unity with the All, if we remain keeping our Selves separate and at arm’s length from Life itself? Thus, we reinforce the puny picture we have of ourselves as being essentially different from eveyone else, as being Fourth Way students, trying to awaken, rather than encouraging a gentle inclusive awakening to the moment and all that it includes.

    We are taught to hold an “us” and “them” attitide. It is a reflection of the kind of guidance we receive from a semi-crystallized-machine-Teacher, who keeps encouraging us to make intense efforts to awaken (Mind trying to go beyond Mind) rather than relaxing into the Present (letting the lower Self dissolve into Higher Centers). Mystics from time immemorial tell us of awakening to the experience of Unity which is beyond the personal individual sense of self, already there, in the Present. The effort we need to make is to get out of the way.

    “Hafiz, get out of the way.” – Hafiz

    Love,
    Bass


  84. I actually like it the use of the word ‘bullshit’ by Bruce (not that he needs to be defended). I find it quite poetic and to the point. Instead of the usual vivisecting of the mind, this come from this and this tought/emotion from that, it just put all in one word. And is as good as any more elaborate/intellectual sentence. Not only that, how can you judge the state (positive/negative) from words? I could write all kind of insults here and still be happy and smiling. Right?
    To keep judging, just about anything, based only on few words or attitudes is like being still in the fof, where everything is judged all the time (I can already hear the ‘but we work with the non expression of negative emotion…..bla,bla). But look at it for a moment.
    Students obviously judge ‘life’. like R. use to say :”we are no better then life just more lucky” and few sentences later “machine are born and machine they die!” (Iknow is from G., but R. used it a lot). He must have said this hundreds of time.
    After ‘life’ people students judge other students that are not partecipating to activities meeting etc…
    Then they judge themselves at all times, because not awake, because lower self taking too much space, because expressing negative emotion, hundreds of reason, but mostly never happy with the efforts made. Not enough sequences for sure!
    Last and biggest judgement is for former students. Obviously we deserve it because we escaped Paradise (what are we stupid?). Don’t tell me is not true. Former students are worse then life people (if possible).
    So let’s stop the judging, first toward life, then toward ourselves. I guess judging for former students is all right (we cannot ask too much), but then we’ll have to give up judging Robert, and that is just too much fun (and I haven’t even started)!
    I have no idea why I’m writing this, just like Bruce calling it simply as it is. Bullshit!
    ciao bruce and thank you for your posts, I may see you at caffe mekka.
    A.


  85. Bruce, you’re my hero


  86. on June 22, 2007 at 9:12 am Across the River

    In post 12/606 I disclosed a very personal story that mirrored for me what is wrong with Robert Burton and members of the Fellowship of Friends who continue to ‘feed’ him.

    One of the few friends who know this story called to suggest that an additional layer of disclosure might speak more clearly to whoever might benefit from my story. For me that’s the whole point, so . . . . . . .

    The old friend that I released introduced me to the FOF well over 25 years ago. He remains an eager and dedicated student and has moved to OH. Another friend soon to quit the Fellowship is still in association with him and mentioned recently that he heavily buffers all the questions that others are unable to escape.

    In almost 30 years of ‘work on himself’, the most basic level of self-knowledge has not been achieved. He cannot look at himself. The lack of development in this area is ideal, based on Robert’s model.

    For those who still need to see something admirable in Robert’s model, I am so sorry for you. One by one you say yes. The complicity and means are provided to extend Robert’s true pursuits while you bask in magical thinking.
    For the rest of you still trying to work it out, it’s over. Good luck, you’ll be fine!

    ===========
    P.S. Reposting 12/606 below for convenience since we’re now on a new page.


  87. on June 22, 2007 at 9:16 am Across the River

    Some of my favorite posts over these pages are those that express in different ways the point on which understanding turns. Now many of us are more connected in the freedom found through that experience than in the bittersweet memories of the Fellowship of Friends.

    A couple of years ago I became friends with a woman who helped me make a break through. She was a founding member of the Fellowship and facing her imminent death from illness. I helped her manage her affairs and we developed a true fondness for each other in her last several weeks.

    She was a very bright woman who loved to be intellectually challenged. I asked if she would be interested in helping me resolve a confusing personal dilemma. She agreed to try, so I told her my story:

    Many years ago when my children were little, a friend I was living and travelling with allowed my children, in their curiosity, to fondle him to the point of orgasm. We lived a bohemian lifestyle with much sexual freedom among the adults. As children they had no judgement about the incident and it happened once. I learned about it from them years later when they were adults.

    This friend in question was my oldest friend and we were still in contact. He didn’t immediately ‘remember’ the incident. He talked about our previous lifestyle as ‘pursuing a dream’, it’s ‘society’ that brings the guilt, etc. I told him a trust had been betrayed and an apology was needed, no matter how late. It was necessary for him to acknowledge to my grown children his wrong-doing, no matter how late.

    A few days later he gave me one note addressed to both of them. It described how he had been looking for a better world, that he had always tried to do the best for them, and he always loved them. He was sorry IF he had hurt them in any way during those years. The note’s misdirection confused me and I felt I had to try again to bring him into understanding.

    So, this was my confusing, personal dilemma. When I layed this story out to my wise friend and asked how to reconcile this, she said in her very direct and no-nonsense way, “Well, you’ll never be able to reconcile it, because he doesn’t think he did anything wrong!”

    And that was it. On a final, long walk together with my oldest friend, I quietly and relentlessly spoke on this point from many angles, hoping to facilitate that turn of understanding that would reconcile all of us. He could not meet me here and now with a new understanding.

    So in a third state standoff, I released this friend. Within that year I also released Robert as my teacher.

    You are broken. I am sorry and I love you.


  88. Hey Cathie:

    Yes, my friend, believe me, you can have it, from 0 – 44 and beyond: I believe I was finished with numbers in the 8th grade.

    BTW, the event was very entertaining, in a, well, circus way, I had just posted #43, wrote what I wrote and got #44, then HC was just after with his #45, as I sensed… It’s interesting how intuition works.

    Although HC is not interested in jumping on the affirmation wagon, I guess it was just coincidence that he was trailing behind me for #44 by milliseconds.

    Yes, again, you got the number, I got the ‘hee hee’ and rolling around fun that is certainly alright and actually very true to the form we are using.

    After such an humorous event, not sure what value you can possibly imagine the number has for you, enough to post a message to me, playing King of the Mountain… come on Cathy, certainly you’re not making up for HC loss of affirmation-identity are you?

    Word!

    Nice to see you’ve adopted that, use it once and awhile, I think you’ll find that it is an objective ‘ice breaker’.

    Just the other day, I made a call back to a guy at a business I deal with, whose usually very ‘official’, I decided
    to say ‘Wazzzzz up?’ (with no exclamation at the end, just a calm fade out. By the end of the conversation he (LOL)
    was almost taking like Run DMC… and what started off as a descending octave from his apologetic side, ended in an ascending proclamation that consumable goods are not as important as the consumer and the seller themselves, this goes for the number 44 too, BTW.

    Oh how thick they ‘think’ the onion skin is from an above ground perspective!

    ____________________

    Love to you all.


  89. Just a small story about Bruce…. I never really talked with or spent time with Bruce though our paths crossed at Renaissance in 79 when I was a relatively new student. As everyone knows the Lodge at the time was the meeting place and going back into the kitchen to yak it up with the cooks was the thing to do. At the time we were having nonstop concerts, I think we were having concerts in the townhall every night…. Diana Gilfether, the B.A. trio etc….. all very classical (which I enjoyed very much). One evening after the concert, I was back there enjoying the scene when someone on the dish crew asked: “Who is playing at the town hall??” This loud voice behind me yelled out: “Tomorrow night, it’s KISS!” I looked behind me to see who had the nerve to say something like that…. it was Bruce. I didn’t know who he was at the time but he created a memory for me and instant respect as being someone not afraid and not formatory.


  90. 89. Ralph H. I read your story with horror and am at my wits end ? is this true? A riddle love Cy


  91. Hi you all, after fighting myself through most of the blogs, I just wanted to say, – okay okay, I am infiltrated from Buddhism, but in reality (Whatever is reality) Duality does not exist. After hearing for 16 years what is good and bad, that was a relive, and I tell you I do verify when I am in the moment (which is even possible without being in the FOF)
    it does not. Is all the same
    coming and going, living and dying, negative or positive

    Humans need to think in duality in order to not feel that they do not exist.

    and most of all what I realized in the time being out, I do not need to judge others in order to feel better about myself:-))
    Which I think that is one of the reasons why students look down on so called life people, and why they have to think they are in a superior – the only one in the universe – school.
    (This one I never belived, but was never brave enough to say so)
    and here we are back to the good and bad

    And the best thing of all, I did stop to feel bad about myself, because I had (I do say I had, because I do not think in this terms anymore) one of the worst bodytypes one can have:-))
    Send you all my love Helene


  92. on June 22, 2007 at 2:24 pm wake up little suzy wake up

    I was watching a workshop on TV. One of those New Age type workshops. They were discussing the number shocks the angels use to wake people up and 44 was one of them. Then the person speaking said that if you didn’t like 44 maybe 33 or 11 might be appropriate for you to use as a wakeup call. No matter. Is the Fellowship unique? Is Robert unique? What do you think?


  93. He’s as unique as all the other mini-gurus with guru syndrome.

    The usual cult dynamic: throw in a bit of (always available) truth, smother it it fluff (in this case pink fluff), stir in bits of “How to keep a cult going and growing”. Have some kind of “hook”- the more obscure the better. Create a hierarchy that benefits from helping to keep it going, and have fairly little going without the context of the cult. Encourage the members to spy and inform. Employ a lawyer with no scruples (redundant?). Stir, don’t shake, and there you have it , the oft repeated and common “unique”.


  94. Across the River (86/87),
    I did miss your earlier post; thanks for telling us again. It tells it all.


  95. unoamino #88 (for now, twice 44)

    “After such an humorous event, not sure what value you can possibly imagine the number has for you, enough to post a message to me, playing King of the Mountain… ”

    The number has no value, silly, I was joining in the fun you started, playing along. Didn’t you get it?

    Guess not.

    Word.


  96. Bruce,
    I liked your story of the tree with many leaves, many lives…

    Liked also your formula for cult making…
    Maybe you can publish an Idiot guide and send it to RB as a b-day present although he does not need it.


  97. Bass Ackwards #82

    Thank you for your post. In your few words to me you have thanked me more than you can imagine! When we reach out beyond our own subjective world and acknowledge someone else’s suffering, we humanize them, help them to heal, and in turn, we become more human. That is what this blog has done for me. It is one of our most basic needs: to be heard and understood. We are sustained by the attention we give each other, it fills our internal intervals. My own work has indeed reached a new level since this blog. And I had to share my personal hell to get there.

    Narcissism prevents one from acknowledging others due to an overwhelming ego deficit. This is why RB seems like a black hole. This deficit makes him more inhuman or insincere. It is not intentional nor a conscious choice. He uses the work language to rationalize his illness. His ego deficit creates an insatiable vortex, requiring new impressions, multiple sex partners, and complete adoration to sustain his feeble ego. As we all know, he is no intellectual giant. He silences his competition (anyone else’s intellect) with the rigid emphasis on being present to one’s surroundings, effectively stopping thoughts and blunting development of the higher intellect in his students. The sequence is yet another manifestation of this dominance. It is the higher centers that make one independent of the group, something he cannot tolerate. The functioning higher centers make one a virtuoso mystic who can sustain oneself in any environment.

    Unlike those in the FOF, I am not bound by any social constraints to talk openly about how I perceive my higher centers work. My time in the FOF, particularly the intensity of Renaissance crystallized in me the aim to identify with my consciousness instead of my functions or body type as the seat of my ‘self’ and be aware of my entire life, including my past the fact that I will ultimately face death in the future. For me that is now a given. I want my children to be proud of me after I am gone. My aim engages my higher centers; they empower me to recognize opportunities to actualize this aim no matter where I am or what I am doing. I no longer require group membership or the number 44 to be reminded to do that.

    For me to successfully leave the FOF I had to make a conscious choice to pursue a profession that required me to be more in the moment. As I stated in my prior posts, that’s what I took away from being close to RB. I perceived that it was his role as a ‘teacher’ that kept him relatively dialed in and present. But he needs to be a teacher with a constant supply of students to keep him going. You cannot graduate from his school or he’s screwed. I had to find my own path without entertaining the idea that I had to duplicate what RB duplicated from Alex Horn. In RB’s perverted world, there are only four types of people, dead life people, ex-students, students, and himself as a teacher. So that leaves his students who want to evolve with only one choice, to become a teacher like him. And what a role model! That’s how he holds his students captive, along with the ‘lifetime’ trap.

    So in my opinion, in order to evolve out of the FOF, you must abandon the FOF group format and create your own circumstances in your life to sustain your work, always keeping your aim in view. Trust that you will be helped in ways you cannot foresee.

    Bass Ackwards, this my gift back to you for your kind words to me. I hope you find it useful.


  98. Elena, I miss your posts.
    I thought about what you said regarding people responding to what has been said versus attacking the person.
    It is an issue of respecting personal boundaries and this territory has no rules which is nice in many ways but not always.


  99. Bass Ackwards, post 82, states:

    ” Our spiritual poverty exists in the Teacher not using his time to explain to us where we are going by using it, what it should feel like, how it feels to him in terms of states, inspiring us with his own profound understanding, etc…

    This reminds me of something that always puzzled me in the school. In one of the journals once there was a quote by Robert, something to the effect that “I do not have time to explain myself.” I found this curious, as he always seemed to have plenty of time to do just about anything he wanted — eat, drink, play golf/tennis, watch football, travel the world, get everyone else to tend to his every need — essentially live a life of ease. But he didn’t have time to explain his actions … hmmm.


  100. Speaking of “not unique”, here’s a little typology of posters. Especially useful for the next time a battle erupts on the blog:

    http://redwing.hutman.net/~mreed/index.htm

    Educate yourself. Enjoy. :)


  101. on June 22, 2007 at 5:40 pm We Were There

    95 Cathie

    Well said.

    UNANIMO, you’re out of your league poking at Cathie.

    Count Karl Augustus von Werner (RIP) used to say “Nothing is more patient than paper; it will allow ANYTHING to be written on it.” Ditto the blog and your posts.

    UNANIMO, may I suggest that if you want to communicate something to most of us out here, take the time to boil it down. As it is now, I skip your long posts. But, obviously, it depends on your aim…


  102. When I think of the Fellowship of Friends I am reminded of the Buddhist saying

    ‘Painted cakes do not satisfy hunger.’

    And RB is the Master of Meringue.


  103. on June 22, 2007 at 5:57 pm Words & Reality

    This article is long, but relevant:

    This article can be found on the web at
    http://www.thenation.com/doc/20070618/danner
    Words in a Time of War

    by MARK DANNER

    EDITOR’S NOTE: Mark Danner delivered this commencement address to graduates of the Department of Rhetoric at Zellerbach Hall, University of California, Berkeley, on May 10, 2007. Originally published on TomDispatch, it appears here as part of the continuing Moral Compass series, focused on the spoken word.

    When my assistant greeted me, a number of weeks ago, with the news that I had been invited to deliver the commencement address to the Department of Rhetoric, I thought it was a bad joke. There is a sense, I’m afraid, that being invited to deliver The Speech to students of Rhetoric is akin to being asked out for a romantic evening by a porn star: Whatever prospect you might have of pleasure is inevitably dampened by performance anxiety–the suspicion that your efforts, however enthusiastic, will inevitably be judged according to stern professional standards. A daunting prospect.

    The only course, in both cases, is surely to plunge boldly ahead. And that means, first of all, saluting the family members gathered here, and in particular you, the parents.

    Dear parents, I welcome you today to your moment of triumph. For if a higher education is about acquiring the skills and knowledge that allow one to comprehend and thereby get on in the world–and I use “get on in the world” in the very broadest sense–well then, oh esteemed parents, it is your children, not those boringly practical business majors and pre-meds your sanctimonious friends have sired, who have chosen with unerring grace and wisdom the course of study that will best guide them in this very strange polity of ours. For our age, ladies and gentlemen, is truly the Age of Rhetoric.

    Now I turn to you, my proper audience, the graduating students of the Department of Rhetoric of 2007, and I salute you most heartily. In making the choice you have, you confirmed that you understand something intrinsic, something indeed…intimate about this age we live in. Perhaps that should not surprise us. After all, you have spent your entire undergraduate years during time of war–and what a very strange wartime it has been.

    When most of you arrived on this campus, in September 2003, the rhetorical construction known as the War on Terror was already two years old and that very real war to which it gave painful birth, the war in Iraq, was just hitting its half-year mark. Indeed, the Iraq War had already ended once, in that great victory scene on the USS Abraham Lincoln off the coast of San Diego, where the President, clad jauntily in a flight suit, had swaggered across the flight deck and, beneath a banner famously marked “Mission Accomplished,” had declared: “Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed.”

    Of the great body of rich material encompassed by my theme today–“Words in a Time of War”–surely those words of George W. Bush must stand as among the era’s most famous, and most rhetorically unstable. For whatever they may have meant when the President uttered them on that sunny afternoon of May 1, 2003, they mean something quite different today, almost exactly four years later. The President has lost control of those words, as of so much else.

    At first glance, the grand spectacle of May 1, 2003 fits handily into the history of the pageantries of power. Indeed, with its banners and ranks of cheering, uniformed extras gathered on the stage of that vast aircraft carrier–a stage, by the way, that had to be turned in a complicated maneuver so that the skyline of San Diego, a few miles off, would not be glimpsed by the television audience–the event and its staging would have been quite familiar to, and no doubt envied by, the late Leni Riefenstahl (who, as filmmaker to the Nazis, had no giant aircraft carriers to play with). Though vast and impressive, the May 1 extravaganza was a propaganda event of a traditional sort, intended to bind the country together in a second precise image of victory–the first being the pulling down of Saddam’s statue in Baghdad, also staged–an image that would fit neatly into campaign ads for the 2004 election. The President was the star, the sailors and airmen and their enormous dreadnought props in his extravaganza.

    However ambitiously conceived, these were all very traditional techniques, familiar to any fan of Riefenstahl’s famous film spectacular of the 1934 Nuremberg rally, Triumph of the Will. As trained rhetoricians, however, you may well have noticed something different here, a slightly familiar flavor just beneath the surface. If ever there was a need for a “disciplined grasp” of the “symbolic and institutional dimensions of discourse”–as your Rhetoric Department’s website puts it–surely it is now. For we have today an administration that not only is radical–unprecedentedly so–in its attitudes toward rhetoric and reality, toward words and things, but is willing, to our great benefit, to state this attitude clearly.

    I give you my favorite quotation from the Bush Administration, put forward by the proverbial “unnamed Administration official” and published in the New York Times magazine by the fine journalist Ron Suskind in October 2004. Here, in Suskind’s recounting, is what that “unnamed Administration official” told him:

    “The aide said that guys like me were ‘in what we call the reality-based community,’ which he defined as people who ‘believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.’ I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. ‘That’s not the way the world really works anymore,’ he continued. ‘We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality– judiciously, as you will–we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors…. and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.'”

    I must admit to you that I love that quotation; indeed, with your permission, I would like hereby to nominate it for inscription over the door of the Rhetoric Department, akin to Dante’s welcome above the gates of Hell, “Abandon hope, all ye who enter here.”

    Both admonitions have an admirable bluntness. These words from “Bush’s Brain” –for the unnamed official speaking to Suskind seems to have been none other than the selfsame architect of the aircraft-carrier moment, Karl Rove, who bears that pungent nickname–these words sketch out with breathtaking frankness a radical view in which power frankly determines reality, and rhetoric, the science of flounces and folderols, follows meekly and subserviently in its train. Those in the “reality-based community”–those such as we–are figures a mite pathetic, for we have failed to realize the singular new principle of the new age: Power has made reality its bitch.

    Given such sweeping claims for power, it is hard to expect much respect for truth; or perhaps it should be “truth”–in quotation marks–for, when you can alter reality at will, why pay much attention to the idea of fidelity in describing it? What faith, after all, is owed to the bitch that is wholly in your power, a creature of your own creation?

    Of course I should not say “those such as we” here, for you, dear graduates of the Rhetoric Department of 2007, you are somewhere else altogether. This is, after all, old hat to you; the line of thinking you imbibe with your daily study, for it is present in striking fashion in Foucault and many other intellectual titans of these last decades–though even they might have been nonplussed to find it so crisply expressed by a finely tailored man sitting in the White House. Though we in the “reality-based community” may just now be discovering it, you have known for years the presiding truth of our age, which is that the object has become subject and we have a fanatical follower of Foucault in the Oval Office. Graduates, let me say it plainly and incontrovertibly: George W. Bush is the first Rhetoric-Major President.

    The Dirtied Face of Power

    I overstate perhaps, but only for a bit of–I hope–permitted rhetorical pleasure. Let us gaze a moment at the signposts of the history of the present age. In January 2001, the Rhetoric Major President came to power after a savage and unprecedented electoral battle that was decided not by the ballots of American voters–for of these he had 540,000 fewer than his Democrat rival–but by the votes of Supreme Court Justices, where Republicans prevailed five to four, making George W. Bush the first President in more than a century to come to the White House with fewer votes than those of his opponent.

    In this singular condition, and with a Senate precisely divided between parties, President Bush proceeded to behave as if he had won an overwhelming electoral victory, demanding tax cuts greater and more regressive than those he had outlined in the campaign. And despite what would seem to have been debilitating political weakness, the President shortly achieved this first success in “creating his own reality.” To act as if he had overwhelming political power would mean he had overwhelming political power.

    This, however, was only the overture of the vast symphonic work to come, a work heralded by the huge, clanging, echoing cacophony of 9/11. We are so embedded in its age that it is easy to forget the stark, overwhelming shock of it: Nineteen young men with box cutters seized enormous transcontinental airliners and brought those towers down. In an age in which we have become accustomed to two, three, four, five suicide attacks in a single day–often these multiple attacks from Baghdad don’t even make the front pages of our papers–it is easy to forget the blunt, scathing shock of it, the impossible image of the second airliner disappearing into the great office tower, almost weirdly absorbed by it, and emerging, transformed into a great yellow and red blossom of flame, on the other side; and then, half an hour later, the astonishing flowering collapse of the hundred-story structure, transforming itself, in a dozen seconds, from mighty tower to great plume of heaven-reaching white smoke.

    The image remains, will always remain, with us; for truly the weapon that day was not box cutters in the hands of nineteen young men, nor airliners at their command. The weapon that day was the television set. It was the television set that made the image possible, and inextinguishable. If terror is first of all a way of talking–the propaganda of the deed, indeed–then that day the television was the indispensable conveyer of the conversation: the recruitment poster for fundamentalism, the only symbolic arena in which America’s weakness and vulnerability could be dramatized on an adequate scale. Terror–as Menachem Begin, the late Israeli prime minister and the successful terrorist who drove the British from Mandate Palestine, remarked in his memoirs–terror is about destroying the prestige of the imperial regime; terror is about “dirtying the face of power.”

    President Bush and his lieutenants surely realized this and it is in that knowledge, I believe, that we can find the beginning of the answer to one of the more intriguing puzzles of these last few years: What exactly lay at the root of the almost fanatical determination of Administration officials to attack and occupy Iraq? It was, obviously, the classic “over-determined” decision, a tangle of fear, in the form of those infamous weapons of mass destruction; of imperial ambition, in the form of the neoconservative project to “remake the Middle East”; and of realpolitik, in the form of the “vital interest” of securing the industrial world’s oil supplies.

    In the beginning, though, was the felt need on the part of our nation’s leaders, men and women so worshipful of the idea of power and its ability to remake reality itself, to restore the nation’s prestige, to wipe clean that dirtied face. Henry Kissinger, a confidant of the President, when asked by Bush’s speechwriter why he had supported the Iraq War, responded: “Because Afghanistan was not enough.” The radical Islamists, he said, want to humiliate us. “And we need to humiliate them.” In other words, the presiding image of The War on Terror–the burning towers collapsing on the television screen–had to be supplanted by another, the image of American tanks rumbling proudly through a vanquished Arab capital. It is no accident that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, at the first “war cabinet” meeting at Camp David the Saturday after the 9/11 attacks, fretted over the “lack of targets” in Afghanistan and wondered whether we “shouldn’t do Iraq first.” He wanted to see those advancing tanks marching across our television screens, and soon.

    In the end, of course, the enemy preferred not to fight with tanks, though they were perfectly happy to have us do so, the better to destroy these multi-million dollar anachronisms with so-called IEDs, improvised explosive devices, worth a few hundred bucks apiece. This is called asymmetrical warfare and one should note here with some astonishment how successful it has been these last half dozen years. In the post-Cold War world, after all, as one neo-conservative theorist explained shortly after 9/11, the United States was enjoying a rare “uni-polar moment.” It deployed the greatest military and economic power the world has ever seen. It spent more on its weapons, its Army, Navy, and Air Force, than the rest of the world combined.

    It was the assumption of this so-called preponderance that lay behind the philosophy of power enunciated by Bush’s Brain and that led to an attitude toward international law and alliances that is, in my view, quite unprecedented in American history. That radical attitude is brilliantly encapsulated in a single sentence drawn from the National Security Strategy of the United States of 2003: “Our strength as a nation-state will continue to be challenged by those who employ a strategy of the weak using international fora, judicial processes and terrorism.” Let me repeat that little troika of “weapons of the weak”: international fora (meaning the United Nations and like institutions), judicial processes (meaning courts, domestic and international), and…. terrorism. This strange gathering, put forward by the government of the United States, stems from the idea that power is, in fact, everything. In such a world, courts–indeed, law itself–can only limit the power of the most powerful state. Wielding preponderant power, what need has it for law? The latter must be, by definition, a weapon of the weak. The most powerful state, after all, makes reality.

    Asymmetric Warfare and Dumb Luck

    Now, here’s an astonishing fact: Fewer than half a dozen years into this “uni-polar moment,” the greatest military power in the history of the world stands on the brink of defeat in Iraq. Its vastly expensive and all-powerful military has been humbled by a congeries of secret organizations fighting mainly by means of suicide vests, car bombs and improvised explosive devices–all of them cheap, simple, and effective, indeed so effective that these techniques now comprise a kind of ready-made insurgency kit freely available on the Internet and spreading in popularity around the world, most obviously to Afghanistan, that land of few targets.

    As I stand here, one of our two major political parties advocates the withdrawal–gradual, or otherwise–of American combat forces from Iraq and many in the other party are feeling the increasing urge to go along. As for the Bush Administration’s broader War on Terror, as the State Department detailed recently in its annual report on the subject, the number of terrorist attacks worldwide has never been higher, nor more effective. True, Al Qaeda has not attacked again within the United States. They do not need to. They are alive and flourishing. Indeed, it might even be said that they are winning. For their goal, despite the rhetoric of the Bush Administration, was not simply to kill Americans but, by challenging the United States in this spectacular fashion, to recruit great numbers to their cause and to move their insurgency into the heart of the Middle East. And all these things they have done.

    How could such a thing have happened? In their choice of enemy, one might say that the terrorists of Al Qaeda had a great deal of dumb luck, for they attacked a country run by an Administration that had a radical conception of the potency of power. At the heart of the principle of asymmetric warfare–Al Qaeda’s kind of warfare–is the notion of using your opponents’ power against him. How does a small group of insurgents without an army, or even heavy weapons, defeat the greatest conventional military force the world has ever known? How do you defeat such an army if you don’t have an army? Well, you borrow your enemy’s. And this is precisely what Al Qaeda did.

    Using the classic strategy of provocation, the group tried to tempt the superpower into its adopted homeland. The original strategy behind the 9/11 attacks–apart from humbling the superpower and creating the greatest recruiting poster the world had ever seen–was to lure the United States into a ground war in Afghanistan, where the one remaining superpower (like the Soviet Union before it) was to be trapped, stranded, and destroyed. It was to prepare for this war that Osama bin Laden arranged for the assassination, two days before 9/11–via bombs secreted in the video cameras of two terrorists posing as reporters–of the Afghan Northern Alliance leader, Ahmed Shah Massood, who would have been the United States’ most powerful ally.

    Well aware of the Soviets’ Afghanistan debacle–after all, the US had supplied most of the weapons that defeated the Soviets there–the Bush Administration tried to avoid a quagmire by sending plenty of air support, lots of cash, and, most important, very few troops, relying instead on its Afghan allies. But if bin Laden was disappointed in this, he would soon have a far more valuable gift: the invasion of Iraq, a country that, unlike Afghanistan, was at the heart of the Middle East and central to Arab concerns, and, what’s more, a nation that sat squarely on the critical Sunni-Shia divide, a potential ignition switch for Al Qaeda’s great dream of a regional civil war. It is on that precipice that we find ourselves teetering today.

    Critical to this strange and unlikely history were the Administration’s peculiar ideas about power and its relation to reality–and beneath that a familiar imperial attitude, if put forward in a strikingly crude and harsh form: “We’re an empire now and when we act we create our own reality.” Power, untrammeled by law or custom; power, unlimited by the so-called weapons of the weak, be they international institutions, courts, or terrorism–power can remake reality. It is no accident that one of Karl Rove’s heroes is President William McKinley, who stood at the apex of America’s first imperial moment, and led the country into a glorious colonial adventure in the Philippines that was also meant to be the military equivalent of a stroll in the park and that, in the event, led to several years of bloody insurgency–an insurgency, it bears noticing, that was only finally put down with the help of the extensive use of torture, most notably water-boarding, which has made its reappearance in the imperial battles of our own times.

    If we are an empire now, as Mr. Rove says, perhaps we should add, as he might not, that we are also a democracy, and therein, Rhetoric graduates of 2007, lies the rub. A democratic empire, as even the Athenians discovered, is an odd beast, like one of those mythological creatures born equally of lion and bird, or man and horse. If one longs to invade Iraq to restore the empire’s prestige, one must convince the democracy’s people of the necessity of such a step. Herein lies the pathos of the famous weapons-of-mass-destruction issue, which has become a kind of synecdoche for the entire lying mess of the past few years. The center stage of our public life is now dominated by a simple melodrama: Bush wanted to invade Iraq; Bush told Americans that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction; Iraq did not have such weapons. Therefore Bush lied, and the war was born of lies and deception.

    I hesitate to use that most overused of rhetorical terms–irony–to describe the emergence of this narrative at the center of our national life, but nonetheless, and with apologies: It is ironic. The fact is that officials of the Bush administration did believe there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, though they vastly exaggerated the evidence they had to prove it and, even more, the threat that those weapons might have posed, had they been there. In doing this, the officials believed themselves to be “framing a guilty man”; that is, like cops planting a bit of evidence in the murderer’s car, they believed their underlying case was true; they just needed to dramatize it a bit to make it clear and convincing to the public. What matter, once the tanks were rumbling through Baghdad and the war was won? Weapons would be found, surely; and if only a few were found, who would care? By then, the United States military would have created a new reality.

    I have often had a daydream about this. I see a solitary Army private–a cook perhaps, or a quartermaster–breaking the padlock on some forgotten warehouse on an Iraqi military base, poking about and finding a few hundred, even a few thousand, old artillery shells, leaking chemicals. These shells–forgotten, unusable–might have dated from the time of the first Gulf War, when Iraq unquestionably possessed chemical munitions. (Indeed, in the 1980s, the United States had supplied targeting intelligence that helped the Iraqis use them effectively against the Iranians.) And though now they had been forgotten, leaking, unusable, still they would indeed be weapons of mass destruction–to use the misleading and absurd construction that has headlined our age–and my solitary cook or quartermaster would be a hero, for he would have, all unwittingly, “proved” the case.

    My daydream could easily have come to pass. Why not? It is nigh unto miraculous that the Iraqi regime, even with the help of the United Nations, managed so thoroughly to destroy or remove its once existing stockpile. And if my private had found those leaky old shells what would have been changed thereby? Yes, the Administration could have pointed to them in triumph and trumpeted the proven character of Saddam’s threat. So much less embarrassing than the “weapons of mass destruction program related activities” that the administration still doggedly asserts were “discovered.” But, in fact, the underlying calculus would have remained: that, in the months leading up to the war, the Administration relentlessly exaggerated the threat Saddam posed to the United States and relentlessly understated the risk the United States would run in invading and occupying Iraq. And it would have remained true and incontestable that–as the quaintly fact-bound British Foreign Secretary put it eight months before the war, in a secret British cabinet meeting made famous by the so-called Downing Street Memo–“the case [for attacking Iraq] was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbors and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran.”

    Which is to say, the weapons were a rhetorical prop and, satisfying as it has been to see the administration beaten about the head with that prop, we forget this underlying fact at our peril. The issue was never whether the weapons were there or not; indeed, had the weapons really been the issue, why could the Administration not let the UN inspectors take the time to find them (as, of course, they never would have)? The administration needed, wanted, had to have, the Iraq war. The weapons were but a symbol, the necessary casus belli, what Hitchcock called the Maguffin–that glowing mysterious object in the suitcase in Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction: that is, a satisfyingly concrete object on which to fasten a rhetorical or narrative end, in this case a war to restore American prestige, project its power, remake the Middle East.

    The famous weapons were chosen to play this leading role for “bureaucratic reasons,” as Paul Wolfowitz, then Deputy Secretary of Defense and until quite recently the unhappy President of the World Bank, once remarked to a lucky journalist. Had a handful of those weapons been found, the underlying truth would have remained: Saddam posed nowhere remotely near the threat to the United States that would have justified running the enormous metaphysical risk that a war of choice with Iraq posed. Of course, when you are focused on magical phrases like “preponderant power” and “the uni-polar moment,” matters like numbers of troops at your disposal–and the simple fact that the United States had too few to sustain a long-term occupation of a country the size of Iraq–must seem mundane indeed.

    Imperial Words and the Reality-Based Universe

    I must apologize to you, Rhetoric Class of 2007. Ineluctably, uncontrollably, I find myself slipping back into the dull and unimaginative language of the reality-based community. It must grate a bit on your ears. After all, we live in a world in which the presumption that we were misled into war, that the Bush officials knew there were no weapons and touted them anyway, has supplanted the glowing, magical image of the weapons themselves. It is a presumption of great use to those regretful souls who once backed the war so fervently, not least a number of Democratic politicians we all could name, as well as many of my friends in the so-called liberal punditocracy who now need a suitable excuse for their own rashness, gullibility, and stupidity. For this, Bush’s mendacity seems perfectly sized and ready to hand.

    There is, however, full enough of that mendacity, without artificially adding to the stockpile. Indeed, all around us we’ve been hearing these last many months the sound of ice breaking, as the accumulated frozen scandals of this Administration slowly crack open to reveal their queasy secrets. And yet the problem, of course, is that they are not secrets at all: One of the most painful principles of our age is that scandals are doomed to be revealed–and to remain stinking there before us, unexcised, unpunished, unfinished.

    If this Age of Rhetoric has a tragic symbol, then surely this is it: the frozen scandal, doomed to be revealed, and revealed, and revealed, in a never-ending torture familiar to the rock-bound Prometheus and his poor half-eaten liver. A full three years ago, the photographs from Abu Ghraib were broadcast by CBS on Sixty Minutes II and published by Seymour Hersh in The New Yorker; nearly as far back I wrote a book entitled Torture and Truth, made up largely of Bush Administration documents that detailed the decision to use “extreme interrogation techniques” or–in the First President of Rhetoric’s phrase–“an alternative set of procedures” on prisoners in the War on Terror.

    He used this phrase last September in a White House speech kicking off the 2006 midterm election campaign, at a time when accusing the Democrats of evidencing a continued softness on terror–and a lamentable unwillingness to show the needed harshness in “interrogating terrorists”–seemed a winning electoral strategy.

    And indeed Democrats seemed fully to agree, for they warily elected not to filibuster the Military Commissions Act of last October, which arguably made many of these “alternative sets of procedures” explicitly legal. And Democrats did win both houses of Congress, a victory perhaps owed in part to their refusal to block Bush’s interrogation law. Who can say? What we can say is that if torture today remains a “scandal,” a “crisis,” it is a crisis in that same peculiar way that crime or AIDS or global warming are crises: that is, they are all things we have learned to live with.

    Perhaps the commencement address to the Department of Rhetoric at the University of California at Berkeley is not the worst of places to call for a halt to this spinning merry-go-round. I know it will brand me forever a member of the reality-based community if I suggest that the one invaluable service the new Democratic Congress can provide all Americans is a clear accounting of how we came to find ourselves in this present time of war: an authorized version, as it were, which is, I know, the most pathetically retrograde of ideas.

    This would require that people like Mr. Wolfowitz, Mr. Rumsfeld, and many others be called before a select, bipartisan committee of Congress to tell us what, in their view, really happened. I squirm with embarrassment putting forward such a pathetically unsophisticated notion, but failing at least the minimally authorized version that Congress could provide, we will find ourselves forever striving–by chasing down byways like the revelation of the identity of Valerie Plame, or the question of whether or not George Tenet bolstered his slam dunk exclamation in the Oval Office with an accompanying Michael Jordan-like leap–to understand how precisely decisions were made between September 11, 2001 and the invasion of Iraq eighteen months later.

    Don’t worry, though, Rhetoric graduates: such a proposal has about it the dusty feel of past decades; it is as “reality-based” as can be and we are unlikely to see it in our time. What we are likely to see is the ongoing collapse of our first Rhetoric-Major President, who, with fewer than one American in three now willing to say they approve of the job he is doing, is seeing his power ebb by the day. Tempting as it is, I will urge you not to draw too many overarching conclusions from his fate. He has had, after all, a very long run–and I say this with the wonder that perhaps can only come from having covered both the 2000 and 2004 election campaigns, from Florida, and the Iraq War.

    I last visited that war in December, when Baghdad was cold and grey and I spent a good deal of time drawing black Xs through the sources listed in my address book, finding them, one after another, either departed or dead. Baghdad seemed a sad and empty place, with even its customary traffic jams gone, and the periodic, resonating explosions attracting barely glances from those few Iraqis to be found on the streets.

    How, in these “words in a time of war,” can I convey to you the reality of that place at this time? Let me read to you a bit of an account from a young Iraqi woman of how that war has touched her and her family, drawn from a newsroom blog. The words may be terrible and hard to bear, but–for those of you who have made such a determined effort to learn to read and understand–this is the most reality I could find to tell you. This is what lies behind the headlines and the news reports and it is as it is.

    We were asked to send the next of kin to whom the remains of my nephew, killed on Monday in a horrific explosion downtown, can be handed over…

    So we went, his mum, his other aunt and I… When we got there, we were given his remains. And remains they were. From the waist down was all they could give us. “We identified him by the cell phone in his pants’ pocket. If you want the rest, you will just have to look for yourselves. We don’t know what he looks like.” […]

    We were led away, and before long a foul stench clogged my nose and I retched. With no more warning we came to a clearing that was probably an inside garden at one time; all round it were patios and rooms with large-pane windows to catch the evening breeze Baghdad is renowned for. But now it had become a slaughterhouse, only instead of cattle, all around were human bodies. On this side; complete bodies; on that side halves; and everywhere body parts.

    We were asked what we were looking for; “upper half,” replied my companion, for I was rendered speechless. “Over there.” We looked for our boy’s broken body between tens of other boys’ remains; with our bare hands sifting them and turning them.

    Millennia later we found him, took both parts home, and began the mourning ceremony.

    The foregoing were words from an Iraqi family, who find themselves as far as they can possibly be from the idea that, when they act, they create their own reality–that they are, as Bush’s Brain put it, “history’s actors.” The voices you heard come from history’s objects and we must ponder who the subjects are, who exactly is acting upon them.

    The car bomb that so changed their lives was not set by Americans; indeed, young Americans even now are dying to prevent such things. I have known a few of these young Americans. Perhaps you have as well, perhaps they are in the circles of your family or of your friends. I remember one of them, a young lieutenant, a beautiful young man with a puffy, sleepy face, looking at me when I asked whether or not he was scared when he went out on patrol–this was October 2003, as the insurgency was exploding. I remember him smiling a moment and then saying with evident pity for a reporter’s lack of understanding. “This is war. We shoot, they shoot. We shoot, they shoot. Some days they shoot better than we do.” He was patient in his answer, smiling sleepily in his young beauty, and I could tell he regarded me as from another world, a man who could never understand the world in which he lived. Three days after our interview, an explosion near Fallujah killed him.

    Contingency, accidents, the metaphysical ironies that seem to stitch history together like a lopsided quilt–all these have no place in the imperial vision. A perception of one’s self as “history’s actor” leaves no place for them. But they exist and it is invariably others, closer to the ground, who see them, know them, and suffer their consequences.

    You have chosen a path that will let you look beyond the rhetoric that you have studied and into the heart of those consequences. Of all people you have chosen to learn how to see the gaps and the loose stitches and the remnant threads. Ours is a grim age, this Age of Rhetoric, still infused with the remnant perfume of imperial dreams. You have made your study in a propitious time, oh graduates, and that bold choice may well bring you pain, for you have devoted yourselves to seeing what it is that stands before you. If clear sight were not so painful, many more would elect to have it. Today, you do not conclude but begin: today you commence. My blessings upon you, and my gratitude to you for training yourself to see. Reality, it seems, has caught up with you.


  104. “84 Foolofit)
    I actually like it the use of the word ‘bullshit’ by Bruce (not that he needs to be defended).”

    Yes, it is a very primitive way to find the sacred Way. The cave men would track their sacred animals by their shit. Bruce as a real visionary sees bullshit everywere, specially in the direction of the School, which is the right direction to get the right State out of this…. bullshit.

    Follow me,
    GOlb


  105. Exit Right and anybody left…

    The moon and the pointing finger
    are a single reality.
    Aside from painted cakes,
    there is no other way to satisfy hunger.

    John Daido Loori, Roshi
    There is in Buddhism a well-known saying: “Painted cakes do not satisfy hunger.” Painted cakes, in this case, refer to the words and ideas that describe the dharma. The sutras are painted cakes. All of the Buddhist literature, in fact, is made up of painted cakes. All of the philosophy, the explanations, and intellectualizations of the dharma are all painted cakes. They’re not reality itself.

    Given that Zen is known as a “special transmission outside the scriptures, with no reliance on words and letters,” it is not surprising that early on in the history of our tradition, this saying became the battle cry. For years this belief was rigorously adhered to—so much so that to this day many Rinzai monasteries keep their libraries under lock and key. Monastics were not only discouraged from studying, they were banned from it. Then, in the thirteenth century, Master Dogen turned the whole thing upside down with a revolutionary statement. He said that painted cakes do in fact satisfy hunger, and going even further, that aside from painted cakes, there is no other way to satisfy hunger. What did he mean? How is that possible?

    In liturgy we use many symbols, words, gestures, chanting, incense, prostrations, bows. During the celebration of Buddha’s birthday, the abbot usually does invitational bows. Who is he inviting? Where are they? Every week during ango we do a Hakuryusan service. Hakuryusan is a white dragon. But who is it? Where is it? We have healing services. What is going on there? Who heals whom? And how? Are we dealing with spells, charms, supernatural powers? In liturgy, in art, in creative expression, what is the reality of the subject? Is it in its morphology, its expression, its metaphysics, its existence, its ineffability?

    In this koan, a monastic asks Zhaozhou which of the three aspects of Buddha is the real one. He’s saying, which one is the real Buddha, the physical, the moral, or the metaphysical? The same question can be asked in any religion. When the founder dies, what are the followers left with? Where does the archive of the founder’s teachings rest? Is it their person, their legacy, or something beyond? Where are the true archives for Jesus, Luther, Mary Baker Eddy, Abraham?

    The monastic wanted to know, where is the real Buddha? Is the real Buddha his material existence—that which can be perceived through the senses? Obviously that won’t work because he is no longer present. Or, is it in the symbols of his existence, such as his moral teachings, his wisdom, compassion, the sutras? This aspect of the teachings was present during the Buddha’s lifetime, and it remains after his death, so is that the real Buddha? Or is it his transcendent reality—that which we point to in sutras, liturgy, and images, in esoteric invocations? Zhaozhou said, “Don’t leave out any of it.”

    Photo by Kelvin Cantlon
    Is the Buddha the pictures that we have painted of him? Think of all of the thousands of images we are constantly creating—and when I speak of images, I am also referring to poetry, pottery, theater, creative expression in general. The commentary asks, “What is his reality and what is the picture of his reality? Indeed we could ask, is there a difference between the picture of reality and reality itself?”

    This brings us to the question, what is real and what is reality? According to the dictionary, for something to be real it must exist in fact, rather than as a product of dreams or imagination. Reality is something that must have actual physical existence. But what is physical existence? In Buddhism we say that the three worlds are nothing but mind. Form, formlessness, desire, the three worlds, the totality of human experience, are nothing other than mind. Given this truth, then all of physical existence is mind. When I perceive an object, the organ of perception, the object of perception, and consciousness create what I—and everyone else—call physical reality.

    A few years ago, Karl Pribram, a neurosurgeon teaching at George Washington University, presented what came to be known as the holographic brain theory. He did this in collaboration with quantum physicist David Bohm who also had a theory on the holographic nature of the universe. Michael Talbot, author of The Elegant Universe, comments on this collaboration, saying that when you put the two theories together—a holographic brain and a holographic universe—what you end up with is a holographic blur. In other words, the concreteness of the world, its physical reality, is but a secondary reality, and the primary reality, if you will, is actually a holographic blur of frequencies that the brain selectively picks up and mathematically transforms into sensory perception. But this then begs the question, what becomes of objective reality? Talbot says, “Put quite simply, it ceases to exist, just as the religions of the East have long upheld. The material world is maya, an illusion. And although we may think we are physical beings moving through a physical world, this too is an illusion. We are really receivers floating through a kaleidoscopic sea of frequency and what we extract from this sea and transform into physical reality is but one channel from many that can be extracted out of the hologram.”

    In the “Mountains and Rivers Sutra” Dogen says:

    Thus, what different types of beings see is different, and we should reflect on this fact. Is it that there are various ways of seeing one object? Or is it that we have mistaken various images for one object? We should concentrate every effort on understanding this question, and then concentrate still more. Given this multitude of perspectives, it follows that the training on the way of practice and verification must also not be merely of one or two kinds, and the ultimate realm must have a thousand types and ten thousand kinds.

    We should reflect on our one-sided way of seeing and investigate ways of expanding our vision and experience of the world around us. The commentary says, “We generally regard a picture or work of art as a representation of something else”—as an abstraction of some other reality other than the picture. Art always has been a medium through which human beings have sought to express this invisible reality, often through the expression of religious belief. A good portion of western art produced over the last thousand years is overtly religious in content. It expresses the artist’s sense of the divine. It is, in fact, possible to say that all serious art is, in some sense, an attempt to articulate the ineffable. Taking this further, we can say that everything we do is part of that artistic expression. Liturgy is artistic expression. Oryoki is artistic expression.

    We must keep in mind that we are always trying to express that which transcends everyday reality. This very fact, we could argue, makes that expression religious. Man Ray once said, “To reproduce is human, but to create is divine.” But is our creation the original or real thing? Is this the real Buddha?

    The commentary says, “We generally regard a picture or a work of art as a representation of something else, a symbol of that which is symbolized. But we should understand that the symbol and the symbolized are nondual. The symbol is the symbolized.” Non-dual means not two. They are exactly the same. Exactly. Not similar, not like, not equivalent, not related to; exactly, precisely. Not two.

    “Haven’t you heard Master Dogen’s teaching? In the dharma, even metaphors are ultimate realities.” Statements like, “Mind is buddha; no mind, no buddha; the three worlds are nothing but mind; mountains and rivers are the word of ancient buddhas,” are all ultimate reality, the real thing. They’re not just metaphors. They are the voice of the Buddha, as if the Buddha was actually standing there proclaiming the dharma. They are ultimate reality. The real thing. “Thus,” the commentary goes on, “a picture is reality. Reality is a picture.”

    What does this mean to you? What does it mean to your practice, your understanding of yourself and the universe? How do you understand your own creative expression? “The transcendental reality that we point to in sutras, liturgy, and images, is in fact the sutras, liturgy, and images themselves.” Transcendent reality is this reality. Transcendent means existing outside the material universe. I’m saying that it is just this. It is alive, it is hopping, it is informing our lives, transforming, healing, creating hell or creating peace, depending upon how we understand and practice it, how we combust our lives in accord with it.

    “The mythical and the real are one reality.” This is where mythology gets its power. As Joseph Campbell said:

    Religion and myth are stepsisters of truth; one probes with questions, the other spins out tales on gossamer threads, but both serve a common mystery…. The latest incarnation of Oedipus, the continued romance of Beauty and the Beast, stands this afternoon on the corner of 42nd Street and 5th Avenue, waiting for the traffic light to change.

    Photo by Rianne von Mourik
    This is the body and mind of each and every one of us. But as Campbell says, “Our culture wants to deny this participatory mystique. It suggests that myth functions only as a dimension of primitive consciousness; that it is no longer operative in any significant way. Indeed we can say that the whole history of Western culture can be seen
    as a history of ‘de-mythologizing.’”

    “For this reason, dreams, illusions, and images are boundless sources for satisfying spiritual hunger.” We tend to think of spiritual hunger being satisfied only by that which comes to us through the core texts of religion. When the founders of the various religions died, all their followers were left with was their words. They carefully collected these words and turned them into the traditions’ core texts. But once you have these texts, you have to preach them and you need people to preach them, so priests appear. When you have priests, you need institutions. And so before long, the original teachings become dogma. Is that the reality of these various religions?

    “Dreams, illusions, images are boundless sources for satisfying hunger.” Our culture would like to turn all metaphors into facts, all poetry into prose, all experience into some kind of a mathematical equation. We want to abandon wonder and awe for the sake of certainty. All too often, art and religion get caught up in explaining the meaning of life instead of seeking the experience of being alive and expressing it. Walt Whitman advises us, “You must not know too much, or be too precise or scientific about birds and trees and flowers and water. A certain free margin, and even vagueness, perhaps ignorance, credulity, helps you in your enjoyment of these things.”

    “A monastic asked Zhaozhou, ‘What is Buddha?’ Zhaozhou answered, ‘The one in the shrine.’” Is he saying that the wooden buddha sitting on the altar is the real Buddha? If not, then what is he saying? I ask you, what is real? What is reality? Who are you? Where do you find yourself?

    The capping verse:

    The moon and the pointing finger
    are a single reality.
    Aside from painted cakes,
    there is no other way to satisfy hunger.
    The moon and the pointing finger are a single reality. In Zen we say the truth is in the moon and not the finger pointing to the moon. The capping verse, however, is saying that the moon and the pointing finger are the same reality; they are non-dual. The finger, the photograph, a song, a story, a dance, a smile, eyes meeting eyes, a touch, a stick of incense, a dedication, a mudra, a dharani, a mantra. All painted cakes. All pictured cakes. What’s real, what’s reality? Who are you?
    Aside from painted cakes there is no other way to satisfy hunger. Dogen said, “Thus, supreme enlightenment is nothing but a picture. The phenomenal world, the empty sky—there is nothing that is not a picture. If you say that a picture is not real, all things are not real. If all things are not real, dharma is not real either. If dharma is a real picture, then pictured cakes are real. Picture is reality, reality is picture.” Zhaozhou said, “Do not leave out any of them.” Walt Whitman says in “Song of Myself”:

    Swift wind! Space! My Soul! Now I know it is
    true what I guessed at;
    What I guessed when I loafed on the grass,
    What I guessed while I lay alone in my bed
    … and again as I
    walked the beach under the paling stars
    of the morning.

    My ties and ballasts leave me…. I travel
    … I sail…. my elbows
    rest in the sea-gaps,
    I skirt sierras… my palms cover continents,
    I am afoot with my vision.

    I ask you once again, what is real? What is reality? Who are you? Where do you find yourself? If you don’t know, when will you find out?


  106. Man is good to be here, I just found that a few days ago/nope yesterday or was it the day before yesterday:-))
    not that I agree with everything – do I want to make myself feeling existent in order to agree or disagree
    nope no need for
    or whatever – that is the best philosophy:-))
    here I am knowing what is best or not – just being silly – feeling good and I wanted to share that with you

    send my love to all of you


  107. 103

    “Bruce as a real visionary sees bullshit everywhere, specially in the direction of the School”

    I’m amazed that you’re so evolved you can even delve into what I see and find. Have you developed psi powers? Was it the school that gave you this gift? And so evolved that you can judge what’s primitive or not. Can you levitate by vibrating your knees at rapid rates. Will you be my teacher, please, please.

    I see bull shit where it is. It’s hard to ignore the stench. I smell some right above me.


  108. 104 GOlb

    Apparently you missed We Were There’s advice

    ’… if you want to communicate something to most of us out here, take the time to boil it down.’

    We see that you can ‘google’ ‘Painted cakes do not satisfy hunger;’ can you see the Master of Meringue?


  109. on June 22, 2007 at 7:00 pm Truth is Where You Find It

    Whatever (91):

    Congratulations on your Herculean effort to read most of the blog. Boy, you must have really been motivated! Hope you had your virtual hip boots on because some of this stuff is really deep shit, in more ways than one.

    My take on Duality is this:

    1. We are eternal beings whose “home” is non-duality.

    2. “Someone” created the universe for us as a giant theme-park, university, test facility, video game, little red schoolhouse or sandbox – depending on our “level of being” and the type of game we like to play. Many video games have “levels” of difficulty or skill, depending on how you look at it (duality again). Wonder where that idea came from?

    3. Duality is the “rules of the game”. Sure it’s an illusion, but there’s no game without rules.

    4. But it’s nice to remember/be reminded of home, like when mom used to call us to “Come inside, supper’s ready!”.

    5. It’s when we forget where “home” is, and it starts raining hard, with thunder and lightning, that we get REALLY SCARED.

    6. The majority of humanity has been really scared for thousands of years. And now we hear more and more voices calling us to “Come inside, supper’s ready!”.


  110. The more words, the easier it is to hide one’s ignorance, to obfuscate, to try to beat one down. Have you made nothing “yours” Golb?


  111. To Former Student #38:
    “It (non-duality) does not however say anything new or different from The 4th way.” “We need not get hung up on defining the self because that’s bullshit, wiseacreing. What is real is whether we as individuals can experience a different state.”

    I think this is where it is different, refreshingly different.
    Non-duality encourages to sincerely question our identity. It encourages pondering, questioning: what actually am I? And possibly discovering that the identity most of us have – is false. It’s not who we truly are. Our identity that most of us have is a mental image of a person, and it is in the mind only. In reality all there is – nameless awareness, observing, simply being, impersonal and neutral. It is what we truly are and it never seem to go away , regardless of passing and changing “states” on the surface of it.
    “There is no moment when the Self is not”. (Ramana)
    I would not call it “bullshit” – this is an essential point – questioning and seeing through our assumed, imagined identity. It’s this false identity that causes so much sorrow. Once it’s seen through thoroughly – it tends to crumble, loosen all by itself, because it is not real in the first place. But it has to be questioned and honestly looked at in the present moment. Really – how many of us actually questioned our identity? We usually just assume it’s true, never question who we actually are and things just continue to be built on a false foundation.

    4th way, as I knew it in FOF, suggested even more identities to already existing: machine, centers and parts of them, personality, body-type, higher self, lower self, steward etc. It is interesting and possibly valid information, but it seem to confuse even more. it suggests that “we” are asleep and need to wake up through personal efforts. It says that machine is not real, false personality is not real, and higher centers are always working and “awake”. Yet it suggests awakening as the aim… For whom? For machine? For personality? For higher centers that are already awake? Although it all just words but they are so misleading. I recall asking and asking older students about it while in FOF, and getting a usual response that “It is not formatory”. Not very helpful!

    Self-remembering is considered an effort, while advaita points that awareness is a natural effortless state.
    Also, 4th way promotes an illusion of a seeker, a doer, an effort maker who is trying to achieve “presence”. It states that such achievement takes years if not lifetimes. There is this “running out of time” scare, “the time is limited”, etc.
    Non dualism points that seeker itself is an illusion, assumed identity, as much as the path is an illusion and all future achievement. It points that time itself is a mental concept and doesn’t exist as such. There is ever-flowing Now. And “presence” is all there is, anyway, it’s a given, default. No struggle is needed to simply be where you are now. It is already the case, awareness already is, now. But mind rejects it for it’s simplicity, and our false identity as a seeker craves direction, future, complicated ideas, struggle and achievement.
    In a way it’s all just words. They have limitations. But words do matter.

    The big spiritual journey, that so many of us full-heartedly embarked on, turns out to be such a joke. It turns out we never left home… Do you remember this story about Gourjieff who took his group on a dangerous mountain journey to some unknown destination? They wondered for days and days, got totally exhausted, seemingly lost in the mountains, and finally he brought them to exact place where they started… May be he was trying to show something… But most just got pissed as I recall.


  112. 110

    “The big spiritual journey, that so many of us full-heartedly embarked on, turns out to be such a joke. It turns out we never left home”

    That pretty much says it for me.


  113. on June 22, 2007 at 7:19 pm We Were There

    I liked 107 Exit Right’s turn of phrase (re: RB) ‘Master of Meringue’ so much I looked it up on Wikipedia (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meringue).

    The Wikipedia entry begins ‘Meringue is a type of dessert, originally from penisville…’

    It continues ‘Meringues… are very light and airy and extremely sweet.’

    What does it all mean, GOlb?


  114. on June 22, 2007 at 7:21 pm Truth is Where You Find It

    No Person (110):

    Nice to see how your post closely followed mine (108). Thank you for elaborating.

    Our identities are the charachters we choose to play in the game called our life.

    And you’re right, it doesn’t take lifetimes to “find” your way home. Your in the back yard and the door is right in front of you. For those who are listening “Supper’s ready!” NOW.


  115. (A new series) Shocking Truths

    Many of these people stayed in the school because of their vanity and then they left because of their vanity; as long as the Eye of Bob was upon them they were sure the school was the center of the universe, but when Bob’s Eyes went away to shine on others of more significance then they looked at one another, shrugged and left. It is strangely amusing to watch some of these people talk about the agony of conscience they suffered over the decision to leave.

    I’m hoping (experimenting to see if) a few statements of truth will increase my popularity among the soulful refugees.


  116. Great you got it, is the place home, but man we are mostly out shopping, working, doing things as a good friend of mine calls it, from one point of vieuw I think life is like an LSD trip ( I know what I am talking about, is long time ago but still remember) when you do not know anymore what is reality and what not – there we should be, should what a word
    language is so limited
    our minds are limited/okay okay my mind is limited:-))
    I can intellectualice everything, no not as good as many of you can I must admit
    limitation to think in three languages maybe but whatever

    we need to hold on to something, but there is nothing to hold on, that scares and so I became Helene – thats me I do this and that, dont I also have an existence as an ex-student

    but this is just the cry for give me a reason, make me feel I am alive, make me feel I am not in the moment
    the moment does have eveything and it does not count if I was a member of the fof for 16 year – or maybe less
    or more does not count
    I lived than I live now
    and maybe one time I understand what I think
    send my love to all of you


  117. on June 22, 2007 at 7:29 pm Bass Ackwards

    To No Person #110 and Former Student #38 …

    and all those non-dual afficianodos, there is an interesting interview with William Patrick Patterson of the Gurdjieff Institute on the comparison between the Fourth Way and Advaita. Take a look?

    http://digitalseance.wordpress.com/collection/a-conversation-with-william-patrick-patterson/

    He says: “People would say, “What is the difference between Advaita Vedanta and the Work?” My reply to them was, “The basic teaching of the Work is self-remembering. What is the self? If you can answer that question, you will understand Advaita. ”

    I find his comment to be true – and Advaita is deeper or higher or both. After “X” years in the Fourth Way it is delightful to take one’s understanding and experience of Self-Remembering to a more profound level. The payment is turning the formatory mind upside down. Hooray…


  118. Serious attackers and all:

    Anybody can google anything and anybody can link or paste anything, the contents don’t change.

    The point is to look beyond the paint, there is found the real sweet meringue…. ah yes, and don’t take one’s machinery so seriously (Bruce).

    GOlb
    (I didn’t sign that one: it was just about its contents.)


  119. 114

    “It is strangely amusing to watch some of these people talk about the agony of conscience they suffered over the decision to leave.”

    Now you’re coming off like a smarmy little creep.

    “I’m hoping (experimenting to see if) a few statements of truth will increase my popularity among the soulful refugees.”

    …and an insecure, vain smarmy little creep.


  120. Bruce
    114

    “It is strangely amusing to watch some of these people talk about the agony of conscience they suffered over the decision to leave.”

    Now you’re coming off like a smarmy little creep.

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

    “…as long as the Eye of Bob was upon them they were sure the school was the center of the universe, but when Bob’s Eyes went away to shine on others of more significance then they looked at one another, shrugged and left.”

    You’re saying this doesn’t describe your “journey?”

    Bullshit.


  121. I don’t describe my journey to anyone, because…..it’s my journey. Nor do I justify any aspect of my life. I’ll leave it to small minds.


  122. Bruce 120

    I don’t describe my journey to anyone, because…..it’s my journey.

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

    And yet you make “your Button” available to anyone that wants to push it, even when they don’t want to…


  123. 121

    Are you suggesting I keep my mouth shut in the face of garbage such as yours? I could have stayed in the fOF if I wanted that.


  124. Are you further suggesting I’m inducing or making others push my “apparent” buttons.


  125. You give me, and yourself way too much credit.


  126. Regarding some of the questions Bass Ackwards asked (12 197/389) and some of the responses to it, to me one of the crucial aspects of this is the idea of School. Howard Carter has also given some thoughts on this topic when he wiseacred recently that at any given time there is likely only one Conscious School on earth (I am paraphrasing).

    I am not sure the concept we have taught ourselves in the fof regarding conscious school is truly what G meant. Robert has twisted this idea in many ways, just as he has done with other aspects of the 4th way. It bears asking as Joe Average did: What is “the school”? What makes a loose association of people into a “conscious school? If everyone currently associated left tomorrow and 2000 new people replaced them, would it still be a “conscious school” and why or why not?

    Some of the examples Robert has given us of conscious school are “the egyptians” (and by that I think it is meant whoever built the pyramids and sphynx), “the greeks”, Christ, Buddha, medieval christianity, the builders of the gothic cathedrals, renaissance Italy, and I am sure others. As I understand the concept (mostly from Rodney Collin), the intellectual, philosophical, cultural and artistic ripple effects of these events or people are of such a different order of magnitude that one can only conclude that they are the result of higher influence and higher mind. I think also an important part of the theory is that the tangible remnants of these schools are not the significant part of their work, which was to create consciousness in their adherents. The fof was supposed to be part of this tradition in that we were building an ark to survive the end of modern civilization (we were the seed of a new civilization). I think now the ‘task’ of the fof is something like gathering the wisdom of past schools and distilling it down to the essence — at present that takes the form of the sequence, 4 wordless breaths, etc.

    Let’s not deal right now with how likely it is that the fof and Robert are on the same scale as the others or even if its ‘task’ is credible. I think many, if not most, of the fof alumni and current members will agree that there are/were special possibilities in the fof that they didn’t find elsewhere, at least at the point they were/are in the fof. Many who have left have found similar or better or incredibly, vastly superior possibilities elsewhere, or found that they didn’t need an ‘elsewhere’. Which leads me to the crux of the issue: Is it really necessary to limit ourselves to thinking of conscious teaching/work/influence as something that can only happen in the way described above?

    Nisargadatta has come up recently in BA’s posts, so it may be instructive to examine him (I would like to say that he is only one of many examples from many traditions in our modern age). I think anyone who has read his books would agree that he is a shining example of fully realized consciousness. Yet he steadfastly cut off any attempt by his followers to build an organization around him, while at the same time devoting himself to teaching apparently anybody who could find his house, for free. I would venture to say that his influence on the spiritual life of the planet, both through his teaching and the example of his life, far exceeded and exceeds that of Robert Burton and the fof. Did he have a “school”? Not by RB’s definition, I think you would agree. So, is the definition wrong, incomplete, inappropriate? Does it even matter? Conscious influence permeates everyone one and everything. Some people may find it necessary, or simply their play, for part of the journey to spend it with others in a very controlled environment. Striking out on one’s own, or moving from the classroom to the lab, is a wrenching change, but at some point necessary for everybody.


  127. Golb 104

    I enjoyed that very very much.


  128. 123 Bruce.
    Self Knowledge Bruce? You”re like that cartoon character who has a huge button on his chest saying push me.
    Now dont disappoint me. love Cy.


  129. I too enjoyed post #104. It would be nice to clearly indicate where it is cut and pasted from (i.e. url), and who is the author.

    Several years ago, I saw a play in London, called “Art”: 3 middle-aged friends (an intellectual bohemian, a successful professional and an insecure mom’s boy) grow apart over the purchase of a new painting by the professional. The painting, acquired for a ridiculously high price, is finally shown to the audience as a frame around a perfectly white canvas. One of the key elements of the play is that the character who purchased it actually sees things on the canvas, which he finds extremely compelling and “artistic”. The others strain their eyes and see nothing but the white canvas and the price tag. The play is more complex than I make it sounds and takes advantage of the personalities of the protagonists.

    Replace “Art” with school (presence, reality), and the actual play with this blog, and you have a potentially interesting analogy.

    Our perception of reality is subjective, and so is our understanding of consciousness, no matter how often we are told it is objective. RB, if anything, is an “epicurian” in the most flamboyant way, lustily enjoying exotic travel, fine food, clothes and young men through every pore of his skin, or so it seems. If all of it is maya/illusion and only presence exists, one would not necessarily know this by observing him. Janna/no person waxes the praise of realizing that presence simply is, always, cannot be otherwise, and that everything else is construction of the mind (paraphrasing), but she adds that since realizing that, she enjoys every bit of her life a lot more. Are the enjoyment and bits of life construction of the mind?

    One aspect of the fourth way that I have enjoyed and continue to enjoy is the psychological model of man (with apologies to Joel). Working on “right work of centers”, accepting different essences has made my life more enjoyable and, when I can see it for what it is, allowed me to experience it more deeply, with more presence, if I dare use the word.


  130. Opus111 128

    The others strain their eyes and see nothing but the white canvas and the price tag. The play is more complex than I make it sounds and takes advantage of the personalities of the protagonists.

    Replace “Art” with school (presence, reality), and the actual play with this blog, and you have a potentially interesting analogy.

    **********

    Replace the canvas with a cave wall, increase the price tag, add six piles of crap and you have an exact analogy.

    The deluded see “presence” while the sane see old crap mixed with new crap.


  131. 129 Graduates.
    But it must be worth something! I mean, it costs so much money.
    Cy.


  132. on June 22, 2007 at 10:32 pm Ames Gilbert

    Golb’s cut-and-paste (#12-104) was taken from the website of the Zen Mountain Monastery, which is in the Catskill Mountains of New York state. The actual website page is:
    http://www.mro.org/zmm/teachings/daido/teisho50.php
    And it is rather more beautifully laid out (better impressions, accompanying photographs in place) than the blog page. Thanks for pointing to this, Golb!

    Howard Carter (#12-48) said, “The real disconnect occurs when we value the events of this world more than those of the next world.”

    Holy baloney!…

    So, you have verified the ‘next world’, huh? You are right, Howard, this is where you disconnect from the breadth and depth and joy of this life, or at least diminish the potential. You have hypnotized yourself to value the events of this actual, incontrovertibly true life less than the theoretical events of the next lifetime—or however many lifetimes, each enumerated for you by Burton himself.
    So, did you at the same time verify that multiple lifetimes are necessary for you to awaken—that is, according to Burton, the self–appointed intermediary between you and awakening in this lifetime.
    What is the nature of these verifications? I don’t see how you can make such claims without lying big time, that is, until you actually experience them. How about past lifetimes? You have certainly fully entered Burton’s fantasy, and accepted his diminution of your possibilities in this life. How very convenient for him (he gets a lifetime of obedience, adoration, money and service), how very sad for you.

    Why don’t you write down on sheets of paper (you’ll need a ream) all the things that Burton has told you, directly and indirectly. Put a check against the things that you have personally verified. Calculate the ratio of verified to unverified, and verified to unverifiable. Then, by all means, share the ratios and the list of things you have verified with us, please. That would serve you, and us, much better.

    With love to all, ‘in’ and ‘out’,
    Ames


  133. re #104

    I thought that voice sounded familiar- and yes, it is John Daido Loori Roshi from Zen Mountain Monastery in Mt. Tremper NY. The url is:

    http://www.mro.org/zmm/teachings/daido/teisho50.php

    I stumbled into Daido’s place a few years after leaving FOF. It was time for me to sit down and shut up. I started doing zazen with them, and haven’t stopped. I still go back from time to time, it’s a good place for intense practice. Daido is both extraordinary and very ordinary. He has integrity. Very refreshing!


  134. I don’t like the word “bullshit” much on this blog. Most of the stuff deserves to be compared to a bigger pile.

    Elephant shit.


  135. It seems obvious that accounts of experiences by students who were at one time RB’s willing or unwilling sex partners are more useful to understanding this part of FOF facts/history, than are my opinion or that of others, who never were. I wonder why the same criteria we apply to evaluating RB’s sex life are not used to more recent aspects of his teaching.

    “The deluded see “presence” while the sane see old crap mixed with new crap”, says Graduates in post 129.

    Fair enough, but I am pretty confident that Graduates was not there when he came up with that revelation. “No person” claims that many photos are doctored before presentation, I have not verified. Her example of the Chartres cathedral, while correct (it was a montage), is not very convincing to anyone who knows you are unlikely to find a quote written in modern English on the linteau of a medieval French cathedral. In addition, it was distributed to members as potential screen-saver, as a reminder, not during a meeting.

    Be that as it may, I find it interesting that people continue to have such strong opinions on FOF current affairs even after having long left the whole thing. How does one “know” what FOF currently is, when 5, 10 or more years removed?


  136. #100 Traveler
    You said:

    Speaking of “not unique”, here’s a little typology of posters. Especially useful for the next time a battle erupts on the blog:

    http://redwing.hutman.net/~mreed/index.htm

    Educate yourself. Enjoy. :)

    —————————————————————–
    Thank you Traveler for the fun website, would be interesting to do some matching with our various personalities.


  137. Opus111 134

    How does one “know” what FOF currently is, when 5, 10 or more years removed?

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

    If you think anything has changed then you are asleep.


  138. Graduates #136
    “If you think anything has changed then you are asleep.”

    I am.

    If you think nothing has changed, then you are asleep.


  139. Opus111 137

    Graduates #136

    “If you think anything has changed then you are asleep.”

    I am.

    If you think nothing has changed, then you are asleep.

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

    There used to be one or two piles of crap, now apparently there are six. It is change without meaning.

    How did I end with Bruce’s job?


  140. on June 22, 2007 at 11:24 pm Ames Gilbert

    To No Person (#12-110) and Bruce (#12-111)

    Like T.S. Eliot said in his poem, Little Gidding V ?

    We shall not cease from exploration
    And the end of all our exploring
    Will be to arrive where we started
    And know the place for the first time.
    Through the unknown, remembered gate
    When the last of earth left to discover
    Is that which was the beginning;
    At the source of the longest river
    The voice of the hidden waterfall
    And the children in the apple-tree
    Not known, because not looked for
    But heard, half heard, in the stillness
    Between the two waves of the sea.
    Quick now, here, now, always–
    A condition of complete simplicity
    (Costing not less than everything)
    And all shall be well and
    All manner of things shall be well
    When the tongues of flame are in-folded
    Into the crowned knot of fire
    And the fire and the rose are one.


  141. on June 22, 2007 at 11:40 pm Ames Gilbert

    To Opus 111 (#12-134)
    Well, we can’t have the direct experience of being both in and out of the Fellowship of Friends simultaneously, that is obvious. But, I have talked to folks who are still members today, and to some of those who have left at various times over the years, and since I know the context of their stories, and they check out with each other, I think any views I have on the matter are as likely to be accurate as yours. Whaddya think?


  142. Thanks Ames.

    B


  143. Traveler

    Thanks for the link. He cast a pretty wide net. I found about 4 of me in there just at a glance.


  144. Ames #140

    Well, we can’t have the direct experience of being both in and out of the Fellowship of Friends simultaneously, that is obvious. But, I have talked to folks who are still members today, and to some of those who have left at various times over the years, and since I know the context of their stories, and they check out with each other, I think any views I have on the matter are as likely to be accurate as yours. Whaddya think?
    _____________________________________

    I was actually thinking of you, Whalerider and Bruce as examples of people who (mostly) use their direct experience of RB and FOF to formulate their opinion on the subject, and I very much appreciate that. It is not true of many others, apparently. I could, for example, blabber opinions (some here did) on what has become of the people who attended the recent Memorial Day reunion, since I know most of them, heard second hand about it and saw the pictures. Yet I did not attend, and that opinion is still very likely to be less useful and accurate than that of whoever was there and took time to reconnect with people. That’s all.


  145. #104 Golb

    In light of that wonderful post I will repeat a previous post.

    Context, without the moment, is awakening.


  146. Howard Carter 2-629

    Thank you for taking the time and energy to answer to my post. First of all, I want to apologize for any energetic discomfort I might have caused you. I hold no bad feelings towards you and I appreciate your efforts to communicate your views to a sometimes resentful audience. Still, I truly believe that when you say things like:

    “Some people know the difference between the things they are capable of knowing and the things they cannot know”

    and inappropriately apply these wise words to justify your Beloved Teacher’s despicable and very earth-bound behavior, you are causing our Lord Sovereign Endlessness to suffer some very verifiable pain. It’s really a bit of a blasphemy.

    I am really thrown off by what Sharon referred to in a recent post as the “callousness” of your school’s groupthink. See, by labeling them “same old stories”, you seem to be allowing yourself to dismiss former students’ (and possibly old friends’) very human disclosures about Robert’s constant abuse of power, money, sex and glory, so that you don’t even have to try to dwelve for one moment of your precious life into the pain that each of these stories contains.

    At least consider the possibility of listening to these tales more openly, as if they had nothing to do with your personal life, maybe read them aloud like stories you would tell at night to your grandchildren. Try not to label, buffer, judge. Try to feel.

    Maybe Robert’s so-called consciousness, the “high” he emanates, is just the vibratory result of all the sex energy he constantly sucks in from all the lambs slaughtered on his altar. Maybe that’s a very high karmic price to pay for one’s “conscious evolution”. Or maybe you really are lucky, and you have reached a karma-free plane of existence, if that is somewhere to be found.

    In any case, here is my peace offering.
    This one goes out to you, from me, and the Big DJ in the Sky

    Peace

    PS dwelve, slang: The experience of simultaneously deep delving and grounded dwelling (just found that out)


  147. sorry, I meant 12-629

    by the way, Ames, what a beautiful poem!


  148. 145

    Beautiful clip, thanks Laura.


  149. #139 Ames

    Thanx, Wow. Beautiful and perfectly simple.

    A lesson on how to distill a ream #104 into 21 lines.


  150. Hello, hummm, a bit punchy today, TGIF, have a good weekend my friends: it must take some extraordinary dexterity for finches to open such small seeds.

    Hello Whalerider ~

    You wrote ~

    “In RB’s perverted world, there are only four types of people, dead life people, ex-students, students, and himself as a teacher.”
    _____________________

    There’s a fifth ~ Don’t forget the monopoly on the 44 conscious beings who enter this world only by Robert Burton’s ‘door’.

    BTW…They have back doors too.

    Beautiful post, I like your spontaneous-ness very much; its straight from your being using thought second, not first; its great isn’t it, to have the ‘hammer’ in your hand, not you in its?

    This reminds me of a great Three Stooges scene where Larry is milking a cow and its tail keep swiping him in the face; he ties a hammer to its tail…I let you figure the next scene.
    _______________________________

    Bass Ackwards

    ” Our spiritual poverty exists in the Teacher not using his time to explain to us where we are going by using it, what it should feel like, how it feels to him in terms of states, inspiring us with his own profound understanding, etc…
    ______________________

    Right, you’ve got it going on now GOlb; later when you find out that 2/3 of Robert’s time is spent celebrating the ‘fluff’ of your donation checks, his wardrobe of 1000+ suits (and growing) the extraordinary shopping rituals (and that means something ‘extra’ considering the affirmative icons needed to keep the students surrounded by external, good looking ‘heavens’),

    you should be ready to be bowled over, re-pinned by the robotic pin setter and bowled again by another, just around the corner ‘shock’…This is what happens in Schools for Relative Awakening,

    everything is relative to the permission of he or she who wiseacres that the relativity starts with them, then you get the dog’s leftovers… Bonn appetite!

    _____________________________

    Hello “We Were There”

    Thank you for your post…

    For me, the blog has certain real advantages and certain areas where ‘crime’ can be entertained. I believe your post to me is an example of this crime.

    I cannot assume anyone’s level of being (although I could, if you know what I mean)… From my point of view, I truly believe that Cathie and I had a good time with that little
    circus act, no negativity was involved, she’s a big girl (I trust),

    I trust this mainly due to the extra-ordinary fact that given two choices, she chose the higher (post #95), to share with me her playfulness in that moment too, that there was a possibility to misunderstanding or misread her intent in capturing #44 by default,

    she could have hid the fact of her initial joy in playing along with me and turned it into another ‘spin the drama that does not exist without my wiseacre bottle’ scenario, though to my heart’s gratitude, she did not,

    yet wait,

    you did: this does not surprise me, the blog can be an alley way for the pain body to make starving cats into man-hunting lions escaped from the zoo, flea infested, blotted puppies into rabid ankle biters, and so on…

    I only ask to please give us space to work things out between ourselves before you insert your imaginary picture of another’s intent; I believe we all know by now where that automatic habit comes from, i.e., the insatiable King of Clubs, aka, the interpretor of neutral circumstances that are not finished playing out as mature injustice, connected at the waist of the doubly insatiable King of Hearts, the eater and bottomless pit of injustice issue eating and hungry for more.

    Negative imagination can be used for three things, you, yourself and that one within you who believes you’re another ‘one’ while struggling with the other two.

    Be well and have a great time in here; I am truly glad you are not afraid to share your interpretations, albeit its not necessarily your essential ‘form’, its Fellowship of Friends looking for the imaginary ‘other’.
    ___________________________

    Hello David ~

    You wrote ~

    “most, of the fof alumni and current members will agree that there are/were special possibilities in the fof that they didn’t find elsewhere,”

    and concerning Nisargadatta ~

    “far exceeded and exceeds that of Robert Burton and the fof.”
    ____________________________

    That is/was for sure, there is a great awakening taking place though, that graduation is not possible in the Fellowship of Friends on any reliable, unselfish level. All passes as ‘not ready’, ‘maybe next lifetime’, ‘we’re creating an immortal tendency to awaken’, etc…

    Yet, is it not odd that the very aspect, ‘Time’, that the fourth way is designed to interrupt and accelerate by being ‘out of time and form’ is applied to the aspirants and older students as limitations, fate, static concrete shoes, self pity creators, aka “not your lifetime dear”; yet, you may say that it is the student’s responsibility to not take such news as self-pity food…

    I would say that any wiseacring that allows such a possibility to exist as either a hell-self, or a heaven-self, so far as one’s essential self portrait is concerned is a crime of a spiritual dimension…

    To me, and this is only my opinion, the whole system of Man #4 – 7 (or 8) was applied to this lifetime and this one only… read Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson: our spiritual seeking ancestors, as I sense it, did not give themselves any excuses to slack off in the work due to any imaginary line of ‘I am this’ ‘I am that to be’ mental pictures.

    If one follows the form of the fourth way, it only makes objective sense that the Man #4 through #7 where in the moment, directly verifiable ‘milestones’, a sort of incredible sharing amongst beings of various levels of being and applicability…not a hierarchal labeling system.

    Too, as Ames & Whalerider have mentioned before, most of the interpretations of the fourth way system have been modeled to fit Robert Burton’s subjective level of being, the Fellowship of Friends is actually a giant mirror of Robert Burton himself and the students are trapped there, like all the statues outside of Medusa’s den…

    So, remember to carry your shield shinny side out or in if you’re approaching the den walking backwards.
    _______________________________________

    Hello cyclops ~

    You wrote ~

    “123 Bruce.
    Self Knowledge Bruce? You”re like that cartoon character who has a huge button on his chest saying push me.
    Now don’t disappoint me. love Cy.”
    _______________

    Yes, my one eyed friend and on your shirt is written,

    “I PUSH’ (?)

    Whose the wiser in this triad of pain shopping?

    _________________________

    Hello Yesri baba ~

    You wrote ~

    “I don’t like the word “bullshit” much on this blog. Most of the stuff deserves to be compared to a bigger pile.

    Elephant shit.”
    ___________________

    hey, yesri, don’t let contemporary mammal analogies stop you, hasn’t stopped the Fellowship of Friends, how about

    Brontosaurus poo (?)

    ____________________________

    Cathy, thank you for your gentle touch, I need it these days….

    ___________________

    Love to you all.


  151. on June 23, 2007 at 1:53 am Veronicapoe

    78-84/72 re Edward DeVere: I’m with you. DeVere da MAN!


  152. on June 23, 2007 at 3:42 am We Were There

    149 unoanimo

    OUCH (I guess I got through).


  153. About the sequence.
    Like meditations and mantra and all that stuff is basically the mind trying to bypass the mind.
    Trying to achieve a state where there is no mind using the mind, is kind of funny. Actually, without the sequence I don’t think I would have realized it. Spending so much time of my life looking, searching trying to achieve a state. Using always the same part of the mind that is the obtacle itself.
    The most difficult part I think (or something like that), is giving up the idea that without effort we cannot achieve anything. But then again with the effort what have we achieved?
    Only when stopping the ‘doing’ of the sequence something happen (if you are doing it at all). Because the activity of the mind finally stops. You can turn it around as you like it, but if you are really honest, you’ll see that you cannot really be present and do the sequence, that activity is actually in the way of living the experience.
    Anyway that was my experience with it.
    So far the only thing certain about the sequence is that Robert, for sure didn’t wake up (if you think he actually awakened, or if you think in those terms) using it! Is teaching something that he doesn’t know if it will work or not. The way of the ‘rhinoshit’of the mind!


  154. FoF’s marketing has a new look…

    http://www.beingpresent.org/


  155. on June 23, 2007 at 5:30 am Skeptical Optimist

    10 Chopsticks
    I thought that you were an ASS, very unfellowshipy.
    You remind me of the infof inner circle today.

    Yes, I was dismissive a lot, and I’m sorry for that, and any inconvenience you were caused. In NYC the visitor situation was intense and we tried to institutionalize it, but as a “big shot” obviously I couldn’t be bothered dealing with it. You deserved better.

    11 vera.mente
    I guess you just reminded me how stale I felt at the time and how “provincial” life at the property seemed then.

    Thanks for your lovely post. I always tried to have a good time in the midst of the seriousness. Why not?

    13 Sharon
    Gosh, maybe this could be done privately, Joel? … Somehow this is just feels quite egotistic.

    Uhm, yeah, I thought about that. But so much of what I did in the FoF was communicating with people, often in public, that I wanted to stand in the “town square” that is the blog and open myself to listening to what people remembered of those days.

    22 Innernaut
    That validation was all I needed — I was out like a shot, and I thank you for that … I’m sure my name wouldn’t mean anything to you, as that may have been the only time we spoke, so I’ll stay anonymous for now.

    I wish I knew your name, and thank you for your story. I stayed in New York from 1979 until 1993, and a good reason was that I had much more freedom than if I had gone back to OH or northern California. We were, at times, pretty independent and it was almost possible to believe that I was really a “mini-teacher” and of course the intoxication of that belief was heady stuff, and gave me a substantial investment in the whole FoF hierarchy.

    23 Sharon
    In retrospect, my post to Joel was an expression of my own reactions to him in the old days. My apologies.

    No problem, but I wish I knew what you meant.

    27 Cyclops
    Any way joel there was also something positive to find in the situation connected with you. No hard feelings ! putting forgiveness back into the time body works for me .

    Your story beautifully illustrates that while we thought we were above all those simple sleeping life people, we had actually become deficient and attenuated, fragile and self-centered beings with little ability to empathize with others. Thanks.

    43 Mariposa

    Hi Amanda!

    69 unoanimo
    after all, it was Ouspensky who suggested that we can change the past by bringing presence to it, a certain kind of conscious intent…?

    Yes, and the understanding we have today that we didn’t have when we lived those events, to be able to stand at different angles and see ourselves, forgive ourselves, move ourselves. Thank you.

    And thanks for reading

    JoelF


  156. Hello David,

    P.S.

    You wrote concerning Nisargadatta ~

    “far exceeded and exceeds that of Robert Burton and the fof.”
    _____________________

    Do you sense that we do Nisargadatta well, to compare him in any way to the Fellowship of Friends and Robert Burton? To me, let’s call a coconut a coconut and keep the FOF in the category it has willy-nilly gotten itself into,

    Burtontown

    I see clearly now that ‘schools’, real and ‘symbolic’, i.e., essence and damaged essence creating institutions, based upon their ability to clearly lead the student to the si-do of awakening or being-life, are (of their own form’ intent and structure) either bridge creators or bridge burners… And in more rarefied cases ‘Bridge Sellers’,

    bridge kits that do not specify what weight they will collapse under, i.e., an eagles feather.

    To me the Fellowship of Friends, being located in the most spiritually prolific area of the world (2nd to India perhaps), is a bridge burner, yet, this is not to be taken as something the organization consciously knows; very similar to the story of the “Scorpion & Turtle” told by an actor in the movie ‘A Crying Game’.

    For the most part, the Fellowship of Friends is a very haphazard, unintentional, spiritual mess, with clicks all over the place, the closest people to Robert Burton laughing and gossiping behind his back concerning his multiple personalities, outer centers (in other countries and states of the US) kept in geographical ignorance of the inner circle’s handling of ‘the walk’ and ‘the talk’, i.e., hypocrisy city,

    octave leaders who use Robert Burton’s name like a nuclear arsenal against any second line involving the possible identification of said ‘octave leader’ with it’s octave leader’s method of leadership and patting of their bottoms,

    the enormous, millions and millions of dollars spent on affirmations, yet no householder level of stewardship for the aging and compromised due to the school’s asking of them, their teacher prescribed roles, damaged accumulators, damaged essence (although Troy Buzbee did get paid, albeit not your usual conscious, altruistic triad,) etc.

    yet, for many non-self-trans-formative-reasons, this is the ‘form’ that is needed for those who are living it, for, after all, there they are, now, and regardless of our oftentimes desperate calls and flares over The Walls of Jericho, there they are, now, right there, something will happen, with and without us… its happening right now.

    This is what it is; though choice does show itself through the postings of this blog and the information every Fellowship of Friends student has within their ‘a bit inconvenient right now’ conscience:

    though I will add that many do not know the depth of ‘the mess’, the pathological side of it, i.e., its corrupted damaged essence and the pain body-being unconsciously transmitted from Alex Horn and Co., through both Robert Burton’s participation with them, by them, his application of ‘his results’ during, afterwards, and his ‘unreconciled inner demons’, his own pain body, the pain bodies of his mother and sisters sexual abuse transmitting to his sex center, embedding there,

    all this, he terms “what my students must endure”, as to later Robert Burton is to become a participant of ‘let’s make the subjective, objective, wiseacring, that his untransformed negativity and its transmission into other’s psyches, creating all sorts of ‘little robs’ running around like onion skin sensitive time bombs,

    is exactly what the 44 doctors ordered and I am Robert ‘burden’, don’t quote me, that’s Robert’s spinning of his last name.

    Why do you think Robert Burton lied at the get go of the formation of the Fellowship of Friends? Could it be directly linked to an issue of his being himself ‘honestly’ (so to speak) and being asked to leave Alex Horn’s group or leaving it because he could not live the truth of his inner contradictions within a form, a triad, that did not facilitate his buffers, did not give him the usual Judge & Jury position, as an ego based life does:

    so he had to begin the triad himself, with a lie, in this context, the appropriate ‘mood’ was set, he then only answered to himself, no outside the box chances of mishap or a higher level of being (Alex Horn or another student) setting a scale & relativity position in photographing him,

    thus, the Jerry Falwell (yeah, spin that last name) ~ ‘the devil made me do it’ is totally thrown out the window, with the bath water and the baby,

    for now, in the Fellowship of Friends, the devil’s are angels and he uses Rilke quotes to reinforce this wiseacring.

    His inner, untransformed, daily fed with self-calming, wiseacring, lies, avoidance of essence issues beyond his level of being, denying force, is attributed to the will of C-Influence, yet this blog’s inner-creating denying force for himself and The Fellowship of Friends is ‘crime’.

    Yes, there is crime, 8% of all crimes go noticed and punished in the US, the other 92% are not crimes because we cannot be for sure that ~ that which cannot be seen, convicted and touched with handcuffs is actually real, verifiable.

    Not that the 8% figure implies that the statistical doctorate degrees working on such percentages are implying that the other 92% exists (?)

    So much of the questioning of the contradictions and the automatic succession of buffers and the intellectual ‘bobbing for shinny red brains, that float up now and then’ to give nowhere to go but back into your shell explanations, are attributed to ‘the lower cannot see the higher’…

    LOL,

    yes and, as well, so far as ‘spiritual’ ego goes, the ‘higher cannot see the lower’, particularly when the lower says ‘no’ to the Higher’s ‘higher’ and gets leaned on, not too unlike mafia protection collectors, with their tonalities and facial ticks and hands in their pocket-rocket pockets.

    In other words, there is self-less real external consideration, true personality information, certain common sense human actualized through being the words and their implied meanings to your particular level of being in the moment, you before I,

    and selfish inner consideration concerning the needs of external phenomenon ‘needing’ conscious care and patience; the exact opposite of the automatic concerns of the painbody, i.e., ‘push down and get rid of anything that compromises my pain-advertisement, pain aggrandizement , celebration of pain for the sake of painful transformation of pain (buffering and spiritual confusion) and do not look at anything that reflects the truer inner picture of my painful self image, built upon identification only, an inhabitance of a transitory, so to die physical body, not rooted in sincerity and holy reconciliation.

    none of this happens when Robert does not get what he wants; he either piles on the $$ and C-Influence fire and brimstone psychological war games to pry it out of self hypnotic induced essence, identification with the religious piety-form of the FoF (heaven and hell, fear of god, the after life, etc.)

    or simply sends you away, maybe back to Russia to ‘get a sun tan’ or simply changes your role in the School itself to ‘subtly’ hint at ~

    he knows that you know that he knows he didn’t get what he didn’t know you knew you were going to say ‘no’ to…

    It sounds silly and it is: yet this is the reflection of the inner chaos we all carry around, supposedly, its to be the energetic material to be transformed into deeper levels of consciousness, being-becoming, unity, the ‘cells’ of our consciously crystallized astral bodies;

    like Ouspensky said “Try to be the same person everywhere”, not a ‘conscious school’ format or blueprint for a fourth way school pain factory, whew, do they see it, that what they ‘think’ they are working to transform and supersede, is being constantly reincarnated behind closed doors and closed conscious hearts?

    Hey, Fellowship of Friends, I think you’ve got your guard house backwards.

    Some Fellowship of Friends members have even wiseacred so deeply that they say such as ~

    “This is what a teacher must do in order to create suffering for his students to transform.”

    Hey, volunteer to babysit someone’s child for a month for free, volunteer at an old folks home for free, serve Life as a conscious participant for free, next?

    Gurdjieff, please do a flyby, just once and upload this blog site, it won’t take long.

    Some have told me “But, hey, its a complete cosmos, it has everything life has and thus….”

    Yet wait, you mean to say that George Bush is in the same self initiated triad as Robert Burton? You mean that life has a self-initiated ‘fourth way’ teacher moving things around?

    BTW, usually its the rule that such ‘teachers’ as Robert Burton are in prison or are wearing certain ‘locater bracelets’… I see none, and if function follows cosmos form , then how is it that no new students (and old) are told, like neighborhoods are, that there is a sexual predator in their midsts?’

    Still looking for that reply Siddiq.

    As so much of the time, rather than long thoughts coming from one’s level of being, one’s deep verifications, one’s own successes at transforming an inner demon, there is allot of wishful thinking, fairy tale daydreaming, even such wiseacring as ~

    ‘If I was Robert Burton, here’s my spin on Robert Burton’

    and very innocent comparisons being made to quickly justify the contradictions as ‘normal’, yet, as I am sure any sincere person reading this can and has already figured, you cannot compare the aims of a said ‘school’ with those of ‘life’…

    To me, its another product of Relative Awakening, excusing the impression as something not one’s affair or business, to stay that way, yet you pay for the impression, do you not?

    And, if it’s ‘normal’ for the core of a ‘conscious school’ to be ‘unconscious in regards to conscience’, then what are you doing, what sort of magnetic body are you building?

    Because it will not be an astral one the Fellowship will foster or abort,

    the earth gets earth, the astral the astral,

    the Fellowship of Friends is an Earth factory, keeping their contradictions precious so to prolong the affirmations of a dualistic self, for what? I do not believe they know the answer to this question? I invite answers, please…

    Someone once told me that they stay in the Fellowship of Friends ‘for’ their friends; I asked,

    ‘Do you then also stay in to support the exploitation of their spirits and the inner workings of their ‘yet crystallized’ psyches?

    Hummm, end of conversation…

    This is where the Fellowship of Friends has been for 35+ years, standing at the edge of a burnt down bridge; that’s ok, no judgment here, simply a sharing that we do change, ‘then now’ is curiously enough, not ‘now now’; yet there are forces on this planet that like to make freezing of time their hobby.

    Much of the illusory drama going on inside the Fellowship of Friends is a dodge ball game between a crystallized entity and uncrystallized entities; its the ones who like to get hit or simply stand still and don’t move, these and the others, my heart goes out to,

    yet, it is their game and there is no way of prematurely stopping the Indy 500 to let a turtle cross the track, not this track, so many people wanting now, right now, so much money and affirmative grooming of the gowns and halos, the show must go on.

    This is not to say that Time itself will not bring all this ‘form’ to submit to the objective vibrations of conscience, it will, no doubt, many of us will simply be asked to sweep up the popcorn and scrape the chewing gum off the hand rests.

    One question for all aspirants in a spiritual school ~

    Can you move about freely, present, curious, intently inquisitive of all contradictions and pain creating impressions within the form of your school or are these contradictory impressions, which cause a furtherance of the very substance you prescribed yourself to consciously leech from your Soul, as a child, as a blossoming magnetic center procurer, protected by quick intellectual jargon, a back at you attitude of lower vs higher, superstition at calling god an idiot, burning the bible if you’re freezing to death, letting the air out of a preacher’s tires when he’s stinking drunk?

    If the later is ‘yes’ then your in a cult, not a school, your in someone else’s mirror, not yours… If you see an ‘Alice’ going through a mirror, please, don’t go in after her… Get your own mirror, break a few, till you get the sheet straight.

    ________________________________

    Love to you all.


  157. on June 23, 2007 at 5:41 am Skeptical Optimist

    153 Exit Right

    FoF’s marketing has a new look…

    http://www.beingpresent.org/

    I guess this is the end of “Gurdjieff-Ouspensky Centers”?

    JoelF


  158. Whatever #91, Truth Is Where You Find It #108, and No Person #110:

    What you are offering about non-duality and advaita has uncovered a deeper understanding for me of why I was inherently dissatisfied with RB’s teaching: he is identified with his self-ascribed role as teacher and identified with the expression of his sexuality and that limits his consciousness and being.

    It would be a conflict for the narcissistic personality to give up its attachment to the sense of itself (or its inflated self-importance), which is why RB continues to be so indulgent in his sexual behavior and consistently refuses to enable his students to graduate. Why should he? Narcissism values the accumulation of money for its own sake more than what the money can provide. And there can never be enough of those narcissistic tools or objects, the need is insatiable. This identification with his role and his sexual bodily functions keeps him from experiencing the non-duality and selflessness that exists in the fourth state, objective awareness. He acts as though his selflessness is determined by how many blowjobs he gives!

    Thus, in my opinion, RB’s prior legacy of overemphasizing the third state of self-remembering illustrates the limitations of his consciousness and being. Self-remembering is only one step of the staircase, as one poster put it. That’s where he camped out for decades. He rarely, if ever talks about his experiences of the fourth state. Could he have mistaken an experience of the fourth state for his so-called ‘crystallization’?

    To me, this is what advaita reveals: RB lacks being in the fourth state. The ultimate goal is not just the third state of ‘self’ remembering, but more being in the fourth state where the self does not exist. Thus, in my opinion, the fourth way is not lacking in the non-duality concept; it is RB’s teaching and being that is lacking. Does that coincide with your current understanding as well?

    In this light I ask: is the FOF’s new direction away from the fourth way an attempt to elevate the narcissistic sense of ‘self’ into a state where it doesn’t belong using the sequence…a repetitive, mechanical technique… (Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna…Om mani padme hum, etc.) the false, seeker ‘self’ becoming aware of having to ‘do’ something to achieve or accumulate something that already exists as a backdrop anyway and can be accessed more easily and spontaneously once one makes the effort (or leap of faith) to release the false concept of ‘self’?


  159. on June 23, 2007 at 6:35 am Across the River

    RE the new Fellowship of Friends marketing website:

    Check out the photo selected for the home page!!!

    Thanks for the link, Exit Right (13/153).

    http://www.beingpresent.org/


  160. On Shakespeare and interpreting the sonnets
    In relation To Unoanimo
    As I wrote in my initial presentation I use certain “facts” as givens. You write
    “To me, Shakespeare is speaking about Self Calming, particularly the type that supports hypocrisy, ulterior motives, meaning one thing and saying another, confusing people because you can, etc. I also suspect he directly points to the self calming art of masturbation as well, i.e.,”
    and in relation to the line
    “For having traffic with thyself alone”,
    some might interpret ‘traffic’ as ‘imagination’, though personally, I sense Shakespeare was a more visceral, a root around in the mud type, similar to Baudelaire, not Byron.”
    Before interpreting “traffic” as imagination I would look at the context. What are the rest of the verbs in the Sonnet? What nouns? Does either Imagination or masturbation fit in? In fact lets start with what is traffic?
    From merriam-webster online.
    Main Entry: 2traffic
    Function: verb
    Inflected Form(s): traf·ficked; traf·fick·ing
    intransitive verb
    1 : to carry on traffic
    2 : to concentrate one’s effort or interest; broadly : ENGAGE, DEAL
    transitive verb
    1 a : to travel over b : to visit (as a business establishment) as a customer

    2 : TRADE, BARTER
    – traf·fick·er noun
    In looking at context Consider Shakespeare’s choice of words-
    Niggard-noun-a meanly covetous and stingy person
    Unthrifty-legacy-bequest -lend-bounteous largess -Profitless usurer-acceptable audit-executor
    Each word and each line has a reference to value? So I will accept definition #2 using traffic as a transitive verb (a transitive verb is a verb that requires both a subject and one or more objects).
    Are you suggesting that Shalespeares use of words and use of grammer are random choice?
    Going into more detail I say the context is value.
    What is of value? This is stated
    “beauty’s legacy? Nature’s bequest ”
    What is natures Bequest? Beauty’s legacy?
    Using the System we can say H-12 which is sex energy or life force itself.. So say life. He further states “Nature gives nothing but doth lend,” this seems to parallel the parable of the Talents? Are you familiar with this I believe Nicoll took an in depth look at it. Life is lent not given.
    Is this reality? Can we verify this paracticaly? What one of us has created anything?
    The air we breath, the light we see by, our bodies, this world we find our self in? Evrything we experience has its existance independently of our will. It is a gift.
    What is it that Shakespeare says we do with this gift?
    “Then, beauteous niggard, why dost thou abuse
    The bounteous largess given thee to give?
    Profitless usurer, why dost thou use
    So great a sum of sums, yet canst not live?”
    Harsh words. niggard, Abuse, Profitless usurer. Words describing failure., greediness, yet poor investments.
    What follows next is a clever little word game worthy of the non-dualists
    “For having traffic with thyself alone,
    Thou of thyself thy sweet self dost deceive.”
    First it refers to a multiplicity of self’s. It describes a situation in which one self is deceiving another self
    What self deceives a sweet self? One possibility is false personality and essence.
    But he describes three selfs in the second sentence
    Thou-thyself-thy sweet self?
    To find Who is” thou.” I look to the words .of the opening line which begins with
    “Unthrifty loveliness” so thou is a pronoun referring back to the initial noun in the first sentence.
    What are the possibilities for the division into three. The system presents one theoretical perspective.
    False personality, true personality and essence.
    Does this make any sense? Can we plug this into the Sonnet and have it make any sense?
    Could essence be “natures Bequest,” it seems a reasonable possibility that agrees with both the context of Sonnet #4 and the content and context of 16 out of the first 20 Sonnets.
    Now consider this line
    ” What acceptable audit canst thou leave?”

    I see a correspondence to Rodney Collins “Theory of Eternal Life” .
    Are you familiar with this book? In Chapter 8
    THE JUDGMENT OR RE-EMBODIMENT
    on page 69 Collin writes
    “IN all teachings the idea of Judgment introduces the conception of a final settlement for each life. ”
    Do “final settlement” and “acceptable audit” have a similar meaning?
    In this sonnet and many others Shakespeare describes very similar ideas to those Collin presented in his works.
    I find my interpretation much more elegant and complete.
    If as I stated we begin with certain assumptions then it all seems to follow.

    Is Shakespeare a conscious being, did he in fact exist or was he a “front” for a group the same group who guided the writing of The King James Bible, was Sr. Francis Bacon Part of this group or perhaps actually Shakespeare. I cannot answer these questions. It is sufficent that information ofnShakespeare life is disputed to justify my approach.
    It takes into consideration Both the content and context of not just the one Sonnet but the whole body of work that it is part of and agree’s with the body of 4th way literature available that describes the system.


  161. on 21 Jun 2007 at 9:32 pm
    36 Tim Campion
    The following post, written four months ago
    (P. 1 #155), beautifully expresses the profound experience many of us have shared
    Thanks for reposting this Tim. It really touched me it shows great honesty and courage.


  162. #145 Laura

    Thanx, you did it again. Leonard Cohen is da bomb.
    I listen to the Arcade Fire clip almost every day.

    For all a movie suggestion: “The History Boys”
    It starts slow then blows the socks off your heart.


  163. on June 23, 2007 at 7:36 am for the Best_1

    #p2-623 Bruce
    “The finger falls onto the ground and the “octave leader” picks it up again and puts it back onto the bleeding stump, the bleeding student is screaming and watching, while kind of holding his hand still in what appears to be an effort to help. When the finger stays in place for a second the “octave leader” kind of shrugs as if to say, “Look I fixed it.””

    Bruce,
    You really, make me laugh with this dramatic story, although I am still hoping it is not a true one!
    However, it sound very familiar how “octave leaders” coud turn completely lunatic about having answers for everything to protect their roles at the expenses of the others human beings there and how the all pyramids of people below oders reproduce the same attitude until they reach the final victim.
    Nice to have you around.
    Aline


  164. I am stalling. I feel that the subject of Sex in the Fellowship is worthwhile. I started and have not done much work on my own Sexual experiences and the impact of sex on my choices. It does show that writing on the Blog is not always easy. Reactions come easily. Dealing with intellectual constructs comes easily delving once more into my own past does not. Even if it means bringing consciousness into the past it is difficult.


  165. How perfect. The photo of the little angel on the home page of the “being present” website says it all.


  166. on June 23, 2007 at 8:17 am Prophet is a Profit

    Those who could foretell the future were not appreciated in their own time.

    Funny about this predictions business: missing: 1984 economic depression; 1998 fall of California; 2006 end-of-the-world as we know it. But, then there were the major catastrophes: 911, tsunami(s), Katrina, etc., where massive numbers died and world alterations took place (tsunami actually stopped rotation of the earth for a second) yet there was no prophetic sight about them. So I say, 3 strikes and you’re out. But it looks more like regular strike-outs to me. But then, REB, as is his offensive nature is, is continually striking-out, striking out at those in orbit around him, unless you have money and/or influence (and I do not mean by ‘influence,’ to have Influence C, because if REB gets an inkling that someone else has a little Influence C that shows (or not), woe be unto them). Money and/or influence, though, is no guarantee against coming under the lash because, after all, it is always good for your Work: If the shoe does not fit, wear it anyway – or is that: If the foo sh!ts, wear it anyway. REB is the expert at the fourth line of work (work ON other people) whilst all the time pretending to work on himself. He really believes that the sex burden he endures is his particular ‘intentional suffering’ visited upon him by the gods against his will. So, in turn, he does not hesitat to inflict his will upon others in like manner – hence the name Robert Earl Burden. [Ready to foist any kind of burden on anybody for fun, pleasure, and/or purpose.] All must endure this affliction and be unified in crime. Criminals do it regularly: initiate their subordinates into ‘the life’ of criminal behaviour so that they can join the ‘club’ (read: clubs, as in instinctive centered activity). This way all are loyal to the criminal way-of-life and have nowhere else to turn to due to shame, etc., and the fact that they can no longer function in ordinary life. Any criminologists out there who would like to comment? Some day the FBI will study REB as a classic example of certain type of criminal behaviour – if it does not have a name and a classification yet, there will be one coined. REB’s legacy will not be what he thinks it will be. Posterity determins legacy. Remember these lines from Shakespeare’s Hamlet: There’s a divinity that shapes our ends, rough-hew them how we will. The play’s the thing wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the king.

    Those who could foretell the future were NOT appreciated in their own time. If that statement be true, then the converse must also be true; what logic!? (kind of like: What is the opposite of progress? answer: Congress): Therefore, this then must explain why Robert Earl Burton is so appreciated: Those who could NOT foretell the future were appreciated in their own time.

    Prophet is a Profit


  167. 149. Unoanimo. Yes your right its just that its such a big beautifull!!!! red button I simply cant help myself….I KNOW you understand. Lots of love! you sound as though you need it. Cy.
    159. A Former Student.
    You sound like that character Data from star trek who is an android and struggles to understand feelings and laughter and double meanings.
    I agree with Unoanimo that having traffic with oneself refers to masturbation on the first level, although on another it could mean imagination or self centredness.
    I stick with my former interpretation of that passage mainly because of the overall first force, ie it being specifically comissioned to encourage a young man to breed because his parents were worried about dying without heirs, it makes perfect sense.
    “Prithee, stop thy wanking get thee to a fucking,
    or wouldst thou leave us without heir withal,
    engag’ed as thou art, in the struggle of five against one
    thou wilt prove none, be done, and rest thy beauteous
    bodkin, in a sheath more fit, more furry ,,,,hurry”
    Willie Shaker.
    Now of course Shakespeare being Shakespeare was able to stick in another level of meaning dearer to his heart in much the same way as Leonardo could leave a message RIGHT in front of the Catholic church in his Mona Lisa Which if they had the being to understand would have had him put to a slow and painfull death.
    By the way, what is that hidden message in the Mona Lisa?
    I have heard it said that the bible is under seven keys or levels of understanding and I think that it goes for Will as well.
    What you are doing is wonderfull despite any disagreements about petty details. love Cy


  168. Just been into the Fellowshops new homo page and its very scary ! “The children of this world are wiser in their way than the children of light” .
    It even has a version of the all seeing eye .
    And yes the putti says it all.
    This is very carrefully constructed fish bait, enough to fool all but the most discerning salmon. scared Cy


  169. 164 Yesri baba
    How perfect. The photo of the little angel on the home page of the “being present” website says it all:
    “BE silent inside, YOU are the silent observer, all this many ‘I’s come and go with the thousands subjects of identification: they never upgraded from the level of dust.”


  170. Hey, what a silence: It Works!


  171. Wow, and note the timing of 168. How’s that?


  172. Today we were talking on Skype with a very sympathetic current about the blog and he said he thought that GOlb was…..me!

    How straight I find myself!

    Greetings,
    Me


  173. Dear Golb,
    please be warned that using time zones to your advantage is a bit pathetic. You’ve got to come up with something better if you really want us to shut up.
    love,
    Laura


  174. on June 23, 2007 at 2:05 pm for the Best_1

    Excuse the spelling mistakes.
    You should read:
    #162
    P2-623, Bruce,
    You really, make me laugh with this dramatic story, although I am still hoping it is not a true one!
    However, it sounds very familiar how “octave leaders” could turn completely lunatic about having answers for everything to protect their roles at the expense of the other human beings there and how the whole pyramid of people below orders reproduce the same attitude until they reach the final victim in the chain.
    Nice to have you around.
    Aline


  175. on June 23, 2007 at 2:53 pm wake up little suzy wake up

    I am observing a ‘transfer of energy’ on the Greater Fellowship site as more and more friends are departing the Fellowship, and I have to say it’s a good feeling.


  176. I don’t know how I got connected to the finger story. That’s not me.


  177. SHEIK.
    Is it possible to do anything about the numbers jumping around when posts are being moderated its very confusing at times. Regards Cy.


  178. HAHAHAA ! I guess the irony of the piture selected for the new FOF homepage is lost on the Goons that selected it..
    ARAHHAHA


  179. 178 Mole

    I guess the irony of the piture selected for the new FOF homepage is lost on the Goons that selected it..

    – – – – – – – – – – – –

    http://www.beingpresent.org/index.php?toc=Home-page

    Shhhhhhh…


  180. 171 GOlb

    should be:
    Wow, and note the timing of the previous post . How’s that?

    This is not important but the number of the posts keep shifting: the Sheik is really aiming at Inner Confusion.
    After all from a certain angle the blog is just a confusion and not important at all.


  181. the reference in the previous post has to be
    GOlb on 23 Jun 2007 at 1:45 pm
    this apparently doesn’t change even if moderated posts are added in between.


  182. on June 23, 2007 at 4:51 pm You-me-us-they

    We escalade montains, we cross deserts on one leg, paint canvasses with feet and mounth
    (while having hands counting 10 fingers, of course!)…

    But, do you know what ego likes best, really likes best:

    Kill the NOW!

    Gratitude.


  183. “Dear Golb,
    please be warned that using time zones to your advantage is a bit pathetic.”

    PST….Isn’t this a World Wide Blog or a provincial one? Am I the only one out of the main time zone? A few other?

    “You’ve got to come up with something better if you really want us to shut up.
    love,
    Laura”

    Laura = the many ‘I’s?
    Love?

    GOlb


  184. Prophet is a Profit 166

    (tsunami actually stopped rotation of the earth for a second)

    **********

    While everything else you express is correct, the above statement is impossible. Where the confusion comes from is that the earthquake that caused the tsunami theoretically interfered with the rotation of the earth by a few microseconds.


  185. (file xemo.9)

    Prophet is a Profit 166

    (tsunami actually stopped rotation of the earth for a second)

    **********

    While everything else you express is correct, the above statement is impossible. Where the confusion comes from is that the earthquake that caused the tsunami theoretically interfered with the rotation of the earth by a few microseconds.


  186. on June 23, 2007 at 5:06 pm You-me-us-they

    Graduates, post 115
    You write:

    “Many of these people”…

    Proud of this formulation?

    No blame, it is very “normal”…

    What was it again ?

    Yes:

    I created you, you are part of my world and I love you.

    That’s as nuts as Francis from Assisi talking to birds!

    That’s not normal at all!

    Gratitude.


  187. Golb, could you please put all your one-sentence thoughts in one posting? (Makes it easier to skip this way…)

    Quit clicking this Submit button already!


  188. Golb 183

    DearGolb,
    love,
    Laura


  189. on June 23, 2007 at 5:33 pm The Pearl of Great Price

    In the new Fellowship of Friends website is written:
    “Throughout the years, Robert’s spiritual teaching has never strayed from focusing on the practical moment-by-moment efforts necessary to awaken from sleep. He has taught the same message at all Fellowship gatherings, and has striven to be personally accessible to each member of the Fellowship. He has tirelessly sought new inspiration, introducing fresher approaches to each member’s internal efforts, and always providing loving guidance and support”
    The biggest lie of all: “and has striven to be personally accessible to each member of the Fellowship”


  190. Long, but interesting, article appeared in #103 — about the idea of “creating our own reality.” Just appeared, so it may be missed.


  191. 188 for now .Jeremy.
    re . 103 for now .Words and Reality.
    Thanks jeremy for bringing this post forward.
    Dear writer its nice to know you care. What do you think of the idea that such people as Charlie Sheen, put forward of 9/11 being Bushs Reichstag. One of the buildings, the third one fell in the same amount of time that the others did, around ten seconds. It was not hit by any plane. Even lay people must be aware that to lay out explosive charges is not something that can be done in a matter of hours. Yet there is talk of deciding to PULL the building which is a demolition term. So please excuse my confusion as an outsider, but it appears that the whole thing has been SPUN so much that everyone must be Dizzy. Also it appears that the Constitution is very slowly and very quietly being undermined.
    Also have you seen the recently released C.I.A publlic domain material, here is information from the government itself about false flag operations etc. With all this confusion taking place outside is it any surprise that people are confused inside, that is when they can tear themselves away from the carefully arranged distractions that are created to placate them and keep them subservient.
    Cy.


  192. 165 Yesri baba
    “How perfect. The photo of the little angel on the home page of the “being present” website says it all.”

    And the (appalling) Apollo on the spiritual teacher page….!?! OK you have a traffic circle with a stone column rising strong and erect –three stories high (!!)- with a gleaming golden gesturing man on top. All decorated with flags and here rainbows. Hmmmm….what really is being worshiped here?


  193. Is any one familiar with
    Mervyn Brady, spiritual teacher founder of
    The Academy of European Arts and Culture

    I came apon this by accident and at first though it was a project of the Fellowship of Friends.

    Also Emily Richards
    Emily is the Founder and Chairman of nonprofit AWAKE Community (Artists Working for Awareness, Knowledge & Education)
    Emily studies philosophy, the Tarot, awakening and teachings of higher consciousness.


  194. Here’s my take on the re-vamped Fellowship of Friends website. As background, I managed a non-profit for some time and worked closely with the lawyers to make sure the website communicated the purpose of the organization such that no one could contest the tax exemption. There are many different ways to say the same thing. So I know of what I speak.

    It’s clear to me that the Fellowship of Friends website is strongly aligning the organization with other “legitimate” churches and religions – raises a lot fewer questions than being a Gurdjieff-Ouspensky conscious school. Now, some may say that this is truly the direction the Fellowship of Friends “as it continues to evolve” but the timing of such dramatic changes is sure curious in light of the recent discussions and revelations on the blog, don’t you think?

    For example, re: Robert Burton’s new page
    (http://www.beingpresent.org/index.php?toc=Robert-Earl-Burton), does the angel Moroni
    (http://www.eamesdemetrios.com/photos/photo_display.html?img_id=92) come to anyone’s mind?

    My two cents. On a lighter (and perhaps more historical) note, how on earth do you write about the property without a single mention of the vineyard (at least I didn’t see any mention during my first read through). What’s up with that?


  195. on June 23, 2007 at 9:45 pm Lust for Life

    A Former Student #191 –
    Mervyn Brady, ex-student of FOF set up a group when he left years ago. Don’t know much about it but heard from a reliable source that he died last year.


  196. Mervyn was an Irishman who was in the London center for a few years during the early 80’s. I believe he died recently.
    Fun to be with but he wernt no Teecha….


  197. 191

    Mervyn Brady. Pretty interesting.

    Looking at some of his stuff, and not knowing anything about him and his story in the FOF, I would deduce that he was in the FOF during the 70’s to early 80’s, when many of the students were getting pretty psyched by the Rodney Collin end of the 4th Way. I guess this because I was in during that time and Collins was the one who evoked the most emotionality (as we used to say) about the work. It appealed to my type, center of gravity etc. Just as there are people psyched by Gurdijieff , or Ouspensky, or any of the other heavy hitters. It’s probably supposed to be that way. But there was a time, at least at the ranch, when Collins was the shit. I still love his stuff.

    But back to Brady. From his photograph he looks like the kind of person who loves satellites, no judgment meant. One of the perfect types to take his show on the road. He’s got the angel paintings, the pat introductory lines etc. It’s interesting when someone leaves and starts their own gig, it has a strong initial focus on whatever that person was understanding at the time they left.

    Like with the enneagram. It was, to my understanding, meant as a tool that fit perfectly within a specific system, and specifically referred to essence as part of “it’s” essence. Then you take someone like Naranjo and their bunch, who leave with the enneagram in their mind, not understanding it’s proper place in a larger scheme.

    They build a perversion upon a bastardization of a small detail and make it, “itself” into a system. I say bastardization because of it’s metamorphosis into the “enneagram of personality”. These guys were basically in the pschotherepy end of stuff, as I understand it, and so they tuned it into something else. And it ends up a cult. People see what they are already seeing. And sometimes they build too much around a static point. It like “what’s your sign baby”?

    Then again, I gleaned some really good stuff out of the FOF at the time, so if you’re meant to get some good stuff, you’ll get it in unlikely places. At the same time, it’s also true that a cults a cult, a scam’s a scam, and criminals are criminals.


  198. b l o g c a f é …

    where many of those fof-invalides go on lazy afternoons to have a talk about old times …
    as it were most of them have their usual roles, favourite themes, their own styles – they like or dislike each other, but it doesn’t matter …
    they are all frequenters of the place they share …

    the waiter doesn’t really care – they stay until closing time

    innin@walla.com


  199. The above is just a wild guess and assumption.


  200. To cy who writes

    “By the way, what is that hidden message in the Mona Lisa?

    “I have heard it said that the bible is under seven keys or levels of understanding and I think that it goes for Will as well.
    What you are doing is wonderfull despite any disagreements about petty details. love Cy”

    Thanks CY
    I have no thoughts on the bible (or little) I have not studied it in depth. Actually like all of Shakespeares plays I have never read the whole book. Seven levels could mean man #1-7. Too bad Thomas Easely is not about I think he once copied the Mona Lisa I seem to recall enetering his work area and seeing him painting a copy. Perhaps he saw things by studying it for hours with attention that a superficial study would fail toreveal.

    I am admittedly defensive about certain things.
    This is my limiation.
    I am not a good teacher.
    While a Fellowship of Friend student I did research on topics of my own interest.
    Primarliy related to The Law of Three and Seven.
    This is what Gurdjieff indicated was useful this is what I did.
    There was little room for any real “creative” thought” in The Fellowship. If it was not Robert’s “Teaching” or interprettation of “Conscious beings” it did not exist.

    There are some areas like The Sonnets that I am both passionet about and have studied in depth.
    I think that my interprettations are entirely new.
    They are not the repacked wiseacrings of other academics so beloved in the scholarly communitee.
    Unfortunatly it appears that most even with years of exposure to the ideas of the 4thway cannot recognize a new thought, new form of Art or the results of independent research.
    The important thing about a new form is what I immediatly recognized in The Sonnets over 30 years ago.
    I could sense the voice of higher centers in the sonnets and I realized that like a book say “All and Everything” it would require reading and rereading over a long period to penetrate to the inner meanings. On the most basic level it is first neccessary to use a dictionary to look up words.

    Is any one familiar with Albert Schweitzer, (M.D., OM, Ba, Ma, Phd nobel peace prize winner)(January 14, 1875 – September 4, 1965), He wrote an analysis of Bach’s music. (While studying with Charles-Marie Widor in Paris, he astonished his teacher by explaining the imagery in Bach’s chorale preludes through the hymn texts that would be sung to their melodies, an approach that had apparently never occurred to the older man) In analysing Bach’s music he found that Bach used motif’s from the Lutheran Hymnal as a language. Those who grew up in the Churches he supervised would be familiar with the sounds and even the meaning of these theme’s . Most modern musican’s and listeners know nothing of this so it is a lost language.

    If Shakespeare was a product of school and he used school ideas in his sonnets then outside of school tradition this would also be lost. The syetm , to me


  201. http://videos.zaadz.com/213305/georges_ivanovich_gurdjieff

    A video of Gurdjieff on a web group expressely designed for spititually minded beings.


  202. Golb,
    how many good sequences have you neglected practicing
    for the sake of vomiting your useless egocentric, self-centered nonsense out ?
    You are one of the many poor .. and yet great , examples of typical results of the FoF shallow “work”on vanity, by reinforcing features while atrophying flexibility.
    I hope that at least you LOOK less pathetic then you sound.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Mr.Carter
    Please give us a replay, if you can make up one, to Foolofit’s post about the Sequence (153)and add to that these questions, never really answered by anyone,
    not even by good“innercircles”such as yourself:

    If the sequence really makes possible , if not to “obtain” presence, at least control and stay above imagination ..

    -why don’t you do a much longer sequence,
    and keep your focus going for 7, 12, 25 or 63 more steps ?

    -if the 4 wordless breaths are the moment in which you are finally introducing presence… why don’t you start breathing wordlessly right away instead of counting?!

    -if presence is introduced at the 4 breaths, what are you exactly holding on “hold” ?

    -if the 4 breaths are supposed to be done in private, doesn’t that automatically mean that you can only do also the sequence when you are ALONE? Or you just run out of sight?

    With much appreciation, M.


  203. If memory serves, Mervyn Brady was in the London center in the early 1980s. An ambitious (power feature) youngish man clearly scavenging for some means to make himself into a guru. The Havens suggested that he and his wife (Melanie I think?) give up their 9 year old son for adoption because the boy was pretty out of control during meetings and a constant interruption to any adult conversation. (not kidding). I believe Melanie was from Spain and hardly spoke English so she couldn’t tell what was really going on. I was appalled at the adoption suggestion of the Havens and remember speaking to Melanie about what to do. This was around the same time the Anne Rodney articles came out in the London newspapers.

    Love!
    Shelley


  204. Some recent posts by Howard Carter have inspired me to investigate the type of thinking that he exemplifies, more deeply. But mostly what intrigues me, is how would it be possible to establish real dialog between the different levels of understanding and points of view, if that is to be a purpose of this blog.

    Now obviously calling Howard “out of his fucking mind” and telling him straight to his face that his teacher is a “deluded sociopath”, will be helpful only in as far as it will temporarily provide you with a relief – you said what you meant without hindrance. But as for reaching Howard’s mind and engaging it, it does not speak to him. Rather, it reassures him that he is right and you are wrong. Neither does presenting logical arguments in plain sight and exposing fallacies in reasoning, asking him to “calculate the ratio of the unverifiable”, really address him, and I will try to explain why I think that is.

    From observation and research, developmental psychologists have come to the clear conclusion that individuals pass through essentially different core value systems and world-views as they mature. Of several such similar systems for describing the development of worldviews in man, what I will be using here is a system called “spiral dynamics” and Ken Wilber’s elaboration of it. According to this system, these same levels of development manifest both in individuals and in societies at large. Development of self-concept, values, morals and needs is seen as roughly following the same observable stages of a continuous decline of egocentrism. Each of the stages is viewed as a valuable and unavoidable step of the way. The idea is that any individual at any stage of development may have peak spiritual experiences and states, but these will be interpreted according to the value stage from which the individual predominantly operates in a given period. This predominant stage is even called “center of gravity”, if I may use that word without it being immediately rejected. Below is a description of stages.

    At birth, one is dominated by instinctive reflexes. There is no awareness even of the separation between the physical self and the physical world. This stage is stuck in only immediate impressions of the sensory-motor dimension, and is profoundly narcissistic. It needs to eat, sleep and be comfortable. This is stage 0.

    After a while, the infant realizes that there is something that makes its body different from the rest of the world. The boundaries of the physical self are established. If something goes wrong at this stage of development, it can result in narcissistic delusions of reference and severe reality distortions in adults. But at this stage, narcissism is normal. The child sees the world as an extension of itself: what he is feeling the world is feeling, what he wants is what the world wants. His perspective is the only perspective in existence. This is stage 1, or “beige”.

    After realistic physical boundaries of the self are established, the infant needs to learn to differentiate its emotional self from the emotional environment. By 2 years of age, the child becomes aware of itself as a separate self existing in a separate world. It is a magical or animistic worldview: images are not differentiated clearly from the objects they represent, and it may seem that manipulating an image can affect the actual object (think vodoo). This worldview believes that external phenomena are personally related to you and happening because of you, and that you can personally magically alter the world. It is still very egocentric. This is stage 2, or “purple”.

    After that, symbols and concepts start to emerge, and the self identifies with this conceptual mind. He has not only sensations and impulses and emotions, but also enters a linguistic world. The child begins to understand that magic doesn’t really work, that he can’t order the world around him omnipotently. But he will think that perhaps somebody else can. A pantheon of gods and special forces enters the scene and a complex mythological worldview develops. Egocentric forces are imagined to order the world around, and the child has to spend his time trying to appease the gods and demons and forces that can alter the world. There is constant bargaining with these forces for his own benefit. Egocentric power gives way to egocentric prayer. Those who have more power, prevail. This is stage 3, or “red”.

    By the time the child enters school, he is able to form mental rules and take mental roles, in particular, to take the role of other. He is able to imagine how somebody else sees the world. He is beginning to see that his view and feeling is not the only one in existence. His sense of identity changes from identification with only himself to identification with his people and a need to fit in with the peer group. If you are a member of my group, tribe, my mythology, my ideology, my race, you are “saved” as well, you are my brother or sister. If not, you are damned. Care and concern are expanded to my group, believers in the same thing, and there it stops. This type of world-view is called mythic-membership. The chaos of individuals’ egocentric wants and desires gives way to a rule-based society and scripted roles for members of the group. This is stage 4, or “blue”.

    The next shift in worldview, if it happens, is the ability to not only think about the world and objects in it, but to conceive different possible realities. Thinking about thought and true introspection become possible. It is now possible to judge the roles and norms of your conventional society which at a previous stage were simply uncritically swallowed. This often happens in adolescence. You consider the rightness and appropriateness of your perspectives for everyone and not just for your people. You are looking to achieve equality and fairness for everybody. In a society, it is reflected as the age of reason, logical thinking, scientific method and discovery, industrial progress. This is stage 5, or “orange”.

    At the next stage, the person grasps the multiplicity of perspectives and worldviews and sees his own perspective as only one possible perspective. Therefore he tends to think that everything is relative, there is no better or worse, no stance is better than any other. This stage realizes that the finite self is going to die, and will not be saved by magic, mythology or rational science. All the comforting consolations have been lost and this can lead to an existential crisis and despair. There is still a yearning for meaning, but meaning can no longer be found in the personal. No experience satisfies him any more. This is stage 6, or “green”.

    This is the beginning of a leap to the so called “transpersonal” stages of development. The awareness is no longer confined exclusively to the individual ego. Sometimes there are feelings of no separation between subject and object, inside and outside. You can still tell where your physical body ends – you are not psychotic – but rather you identify yourself with the world and the circle of human beings. Further stages are described, but for the purpose of this post, it will be enough. Maybe just to mention that, at this stage, even though all perspectives are recognized as relative, it is not believed that therefore they are all equal value (e.g. that it is just as legitimate to meet the needs of the Ku Klux Klan as those of any other group in a society).

    So this system is one way of looking at the Fellowship situation that I have found very helpful and illuminating when trying to understand why I don’t get Robert’s teaching. It could be said that whatever traumatic experiences he had as a child were probably instrumental in the growth of the pathologies we have all been observing. As a consequence of not having fully transcended and integrated these early stages of development, Robert limps into adulthood like a veteran with a missing foot, ear, eye. He cultivates narcissistic delusions of grandeur (“We are the greatest school in recorded history” etc.), first denies his “unacceptable” sexual orientation and eventually explains it away with more delusions of grandeur (“I am a goddess in a man’s body, the Gods have given me the role of having sex with my students”), believes himself to be above all other men on the planet, a lone conscious being number 7 in direct communication with gods and angels.

    Whatever spiritual states he may have experienced, which may or may not have been the cause of pronouncing himself a man number 5, 6, and 7, are interpreted with the words of two major belief systems that he has been exposed to: the Fourth Way and Christianity; but most importantly, they are interpreted through his “center of gravity”, which seems to be close to narcissistic early childhood “stage 3/red” (e.g. Leonardo is in the room right now, the Gods are writing the play of our lives, the Gods will help you awaken if you stay in the School, if you leave, higher forces will not help you any more; the Gods want us to build an Ark or construct a Theatron or have sex), sometimes he even dips into “stage 2/purple” (e.g. “The Absolute went to the trouble to arrange this shock for us” /being detained at the airport/, delusions of reference such as that pictures on prehistoric walls were created to communicate with the FoF, license plate readings etc.), but it seems the cutting edge of value development in him is “stage 4/blue”, and this is mostly what he shares with his students as the highest truth. (E.g. we are exceedingly fortunate to be connected with the Gods while life is meaningless and unconscious and superficial; higher school has selected us to transmit their special secret objective knowledge to us, and we must be grateful for it and make every effort to perform the epic task and special mission that has been set before us, to become immortal so that Paradise can be rejuvenated with fresh conscious beings [no, he actually used those words, see the toast of 2005]. Externally consider other students (but not life people). Give up your own selfish many I’s and submit to the higher will and authority, fulfill its requirements.)

    Another thing that needs to be mentioned is that this theory of stages incorporates different intelligences or lines of development. It is acknowledged that someone might be, for example, cognitively quite highly developed, yet their values or self-image still lag behind, resonating with a lower stage. What happens is that people who have cognitively reached at least stage 5/orange, will often resonate with a lower-stage self-image, such as that of being special and chosen by the Gods to evolve, and will find a good fit in the Fellowship. Much of modern spirituality also hinges on people who have come to the rational stage, found it scary, denied it and ran back to the magical (e.g. The Secret, various New Age) and mythical (e.g. fundamentalist Christianity, Fellowship of Friends) rather than pushed forward to the trans-rational. While many people agree that Truth cannot be grasped by the rational mind, it does not follow that greater spiritual awakeness lies in the direction of earlier, pre-rational modes of cognition. I would agree with Wilber that many forms of what is now called “spirituality” are not beyond the rational mind, but beneath it.

    This brings me to why Howard-Carterites will not budge when faced with a full-scale logic attack. It is not that they are never able to think rationally: when they are buying a used car, most of them will look for hidden signs of rust, dirt, wear, and draw their conclusions from that, rather than believe the seller at his word that the car is brand new and was only occasionally used by his grandmother. But they have compartmentalized their lives and decided that spirituality follows different laws, so it cannot be subjected to rational inquiry. They have given up their spiritual life to truthiness rather than exposing it to investigation and critical review. In fact, the attitude has only been reinforced by the Fellowship and by Robert Burton. Students at this stage go around saying things like “None of what the Teacher said made sense, but it was a beautiful experience anyway” and “It doesn’t matter what your many I’s say because they are just ‘I’s, the main thing is that you remain positive and keep trying to apply what Robert teaches”, and “While on some literal level the Teacher may be ‘wrong’, none of that is important as long as you are doing the sequence and being present – and anyway, it is emotional to think that ancient schools left messages for us”, and “It may seem like it’s not awakening me but that’s only because I’m not making enough effort, so I must learn to be more passionate about the sequence”. Rationality is beyond the ceiling of most of the Fellowship today. The school is about believing, uncritically accepting revealed truths so that you may be saved by doing the one right thing that will bring you the desired immortality.

    And while people believe in the proposition that the Truth is necessarily hidden, buried for esoteric purposes, and can only be revealed through special conscious intermediaries, then literally anything could be true. Truth is measured by the level of authority awarded to the person who says that it’s true. That is also the reason why it doesn’t help if you tell Howard that Robert is a “deluded sociopath”. You have no authority in Howard’s eyes. He will measure your statement against what Robert says, and he will consider it true to the degree it agrees with Robert’s opinion.

    In addition to what has been said, Robert’s focus on saving the finite self, reaching Paradise, grasping immortality, becoming one of the Gods, trusting that higher forces will make your soul permanent if you only make enough of the efforts that they want you to make, etc., indicates a stage 3/red stage of spirituality, grasping for more power by obeying those already in power. Many modern religions in their popular form share this level, the only difference being in what external practices and beliefs constitute the “right path”. In Robert’s case in particular, he has a preoccupation with disasters, physical death and decay, as many have noted before, and in my opinion this shows a great fear and attachment to the survival of the individual ego, rather than a level of liberation. Also, serving and rewarding the ego for its work is often coupled with a stage 4/blue belief in being the “chosen people”.

    The problem which arises is that in my feeling, nowadays there are many, many FoF students – those not completely trapped in the wheels of the political machinery and their public roles – who are eager to move beyond what they feel to be a spiritual kindergarten. Yet, since for years they have been programmed to believe that Robert is the highest ideal of conscious man, they consciously or subconsciously keep looking to Robert for permission, and when none is given, they unhappily strive to emulate him and to make his teaching compatible with their own understanding that sometimes far exceeds that of the Teacher. If I observed correctly, this is even true of Girard. Robert is stalling everybody, except those deeply in a blue approach to spirituality.

    The film Jesus Camp shows a touching scene of a young boy who participates in one of these Pentecostal camps for children. He admits in tears how hard it is to believe what the Bible says, and how sometimes he has doubts and just can’t do it. He is given encouragement and love, and his congregation helps him bridge the “interval” and resist the Devil. He resumes his study of the Bible more fervently, determined to fight against these wrong and deceitful impulses. I wonder about him sometimes, and which road he is going to take. He must be about 10 or 11 years old now.

    So, the original question – how to establish dialog between different levels? What would the purpose of such a dialog be? Each of the levels is considered valuable in its own right, and it seems that it is not possible to talk someone into the next level, unless they are already on their way there. Words will only be understood according to the being of one who reads them. So if we recognize that someone approaches spirituality from stage 4/blue, their needs will not be met if they are spoken to from stage 5/orange or later. In other words, someone who deeply believes and appreciates the order and rules and promise of awakening brought into their life by someone he deems to be a “conscious being”, will not hear orange that tells him he is a sucker and he should think for himself. Nor will he hear green that says his religion is equally valuable and meaningful as any other religion or spiritual group. He just can’t make that cognitive leap right now. And why should he? Just because other people have done so?

    People wake up from the Fellowship and suddenly demand that everyone else wake up. But the wake-up call can only be heard by those already on their way out, who only needed a little push. For them, it is worth writing on the blog. But there are also those who still need blue, guidance, conscious beings and working for salvation. In order to speak to them, if they are reading, I would suggest not to attack the values of blue per se, but rather to point out, if possible, that there are healthier blue ways of belonging to organizations with more integrity, exposing how Robert Burton has harmed the good of this particular group. This should be coming preferably from people within the group. It is painful in any event to detach yourself from your organism, so go slow. And those who remain will be bound more firmly to Robert and to each other for having survived the shaking of the tree together.

    Maybe Yesri Baba will have more insights on this. I realize that this system can be abused to justify enforcing your own point of view as better, but that is precisely not the point. The point is that everyone develops at his own pace and cannot and need not adopt a worldview that is not right for him at the moment.


  205. Hello Former Student ~

    You wrote ~

    “Is Shakespeare a conscious being, did he in fact exist or was he a “front” for a group the same group who guided the writing of The King James Bible

    I am stalling. I feel that the subject of Sex in the Fellowship is worthwhile.”
    _________________________________

    Although I like Shakespeare, particularly his un-literal side, i.e., his being-ness, what he is able to allude to, in behind the literal, where words cannot be the feelings, yet can deliver us to their doorsteps;

    I do not keep his big books around as some have for the role of bookends, so I cannot give you the name of this woman scholar from Yale University (I believe) that did an analysis/interpretation of his poems (sonnets specifically), the book also included a CD of her reading each sonnet.

    As I listened to it, (one sonnet to demonstrate my issue with interpreting poetry is the memory of the one sonnet where Shakespeare uses a donkey as analogous to his own body, his struggle between spirit and mind).

    Now, for me, (and all of us) coming from a spirit/astral perspective, having certain experiences that have deeply set within us a context to understand the metaphorical at nearly ‘first glance’ that it is dealing not with the epidermis surface of our experience, rather the flip side, within,

    hearing the Doctorate Scholar interpret Shakespeare’s ‘Donkey’ or ‘Horse’ in terms of the historical treatment of animals during his time, simply allowed me to let the CD go and enjoy the Sonnets themselves,

    I could not really get my essence around the idea that someone who had dedicated a great part of her life to Shakespeare could have missed the esoteric side of his sonnets; yet, on the flip side of that ‘weird coin’ is that fact that The Fellowship of Friends has missed (having all the esoteric affirmations and symbols already) the practical side of their application, so, go figure: this phenomenon of dissconnect occurs on both sides of the candle.

    For me, the Doctorate Scholar (I like to wish it so) is being set up by her own inner workings to get a big shock when she realizes that Shakespeare was writing from the inside for the inside, not the traditional (Tennyson for instance) inside to the outside.

    Former Student, as a blog-friend I would just simply say that you’re connecting Shakespeare to too many other book sources, this is a vicious and pithy storm cloud of book dope vapors: see? You can’t really go wrong, left or right, up or down, when anchoring a 10 story tall Ham Radio Antenna to the roofs of other ham operators, there’s no objectivity, only partiality and group sympathy for multiple interpretations that keep themselves ‘thinking’ their speaking from all over the world to one another, yet they are all situated in Oregon House.

    In other words, I would like to share with you that I try and read an artist’s Biography a bit first, to get a feel for what sorts of forces have passed through that lover’s being, then take a look at their writing to see just where they delivered themselves from all the mail (and returned letters).

    It is interesting to note that although contemporary people fawn over Bach and Rembrandt, that they themselves experienced enormous suffering and strife from the public of their day, competitors, governments, etc. The dead artists are richer than the living, yet, hey, they earned it and I am glad to send them dividend checks once in a while.

    To me, your post concerning Shakespeare has a desperate tone to it, a sort of ‘I gotta know, I gotta make these connections, then I will have something’, yet, is this not simply a ‘virus’ that’s like a thick bubble surrounding that incredible butterfly-like configuration in between your left and right hemispheres?

    Please, do what Shakespeare loved so much towards the idea that someone would someday be transformed, inspired and more deeply connected to what they feel is what they (with conscience intact, wearing no sun glasses)
    do, put yourself in those sonnets, not more dead people, not more ‘I wanna shake my spear’ people, you’ll never arrive at any individual objective verifications if you borrow the opinions of others as just as ‘vital’ as your own: some opinions are ‘soap bubble dope’, others are vibrations from one’s true being, mistakingly interpreted as a subjective opinion.

    I find it interesting that human beings hod-podge one another into a muck of similarities and likenesses, whereas perhaps the deeper reality is that we are very unique brothers and sisters from very different points of the solar system and the absolutes creation: certainly all the planets in the solar system are planets, yet not a one like the other, nor any of them imploding because it or it is not Saturn, or does or does not have more than 3 moons, etc.

    Regardless, Shakespeare came from the soul experiencing a human incarnation, to me, it does not matter whether he was one or many, if someone asks me, “Hey, I’ve got this brand new Lamborghini that I don’t want, (but), its in several large crates, do you still want it for free?

    Dah!

    You’re either in a pickle jar or eating it: you choose.
    __________________________

    You are “stalling” ~ What do you mean?

    The subject of sex in the Fellowship of Friends? How is it different than the sex you experienced before meeting the Fellowship of Friends, more open, more in Essence, more casual, more gypsy like, (remember the 70’s club?)
    The form of sexual practices within the FoF is not new, if anything its adolescent and has not even touched the level of dis-identification and intent as Tantra points towards. Yet, to me, the really silly thing about all the talk about sex, tantra, group sex, weird sex, infra sex, is that sex itself is ‘thought’ to be the vehicle, yet, like Shakespeare’s sonnets, its only a car with an engine, if it has no gas, its nothing, dead, unusable as a tool.

    Yet, for those who use sex (infra sex) and (open, giggly, over a few beers ‘or bottles of $400 dollar a bottle wine’ sex) as buffers, self calming rituals (Will you respect me in the morning? ‘I’ creators), then its the house, the door, tha Fluff, yet, here we have it, there’s the rub;

    if you step back a few feet you’ll see that such participants are living inside giant models of hammers, circular saws, table saws and the like, their ‘house’ is the tool, they are building nothing for themselves, save, dependence, addiction, self loathing (for the orgasm always tells the truth, it can even ‘without your permission’ knock down vault doors that’s usually protecting your dealing with that little gem of a conscience you have, that everyone has, relativily speaking; many call the orgasm ‘the little death’…how is that? It’s not that way for everyone though; so what is it in each of us that entertains the idea of ‘death’? Perhaps it (the orgasm) is simply the most naked buffer showing the naked condition of the extremes it serves in that particular triad, i.e., the imaginary self and conscience.

    A Former Student, be careful my friend, there are irridations steaming from the Fellowship of Friends sex center and they are as cold as a meat lockers stash and at times absolutely brutal with the emotional center directly connected to The Inner Child phenomenon: you may like to experiment with ‘free sex’, yet, be sure that ‘free sex’ will experiment with you too.

    And remember, all pornography is corrupted patriarchal prison food. Ouspensky said “Evil is real.” The broader I work to expand my experience of this world I find myself stapled to, the less I am apt to disprove his profound claim. Some forms of corruption cannot be transformed into ascending octaves, it is just that simple.

    Free sex in the Fellowship of Friends is expensive: just ask the Fellowship of Friends insurance companies.
    ___________________________________

    Hello Yesri baba,

    You wrote ~

    “How perfect. The photo of the little angel on the home page of the “being present” website says it all.”
    __________________________

    Hummm, I thought it meant “Be quiet, don’t tell anyone about our sexual predator and group narcissus complex(?)

    ___________________________

    Hello Prophet is profit,

    You wrote ~

    “Some day the FBI will study REB as a classic example of certain type of criminal behavior – if it does not have a name and a classification yet, there will be one coined.”
    _________________

    Been there, done that… the name is Jim Jones, i.e., the man mold, not the particular triad.

    _______________________________

    Hello Bruce,

    You wrote,

    “I don’t know how I got connected to the finger story. That’s not me.”
    ____________________

    Maybe it was the button pushing thing between you and cyclops(?)

    I suppose ‘associative I’s’ still occurs outside the box.
    ________________________

    Hello You me us they,

    You wrote,

    “That’s as nuts as Francis from Assisi talking to birds!”

    or being a gate house guard at the Fellowship of Friends, facing the wrong direction.

    _______________________________

    Hello Ka, welcome,

    You wrote,

    “traffic circle with a stone column rising strong and erect”
    ______________________

    Don’t leave out the si-do interval bridge, i.e., the spouting palm trees.

    _________________________

    Love to you all, all of you.


  206. on June 23, 2007 at 11:52 pm Lust for Life

    and to add some ‘scale’:


  207. on June 24, 2007 at 12:02 am Lust for Life

    Shelley #199, you wrote:

    “This was around the same time the Anne Rodney articles came out in the London newspapers.”

    Please expand.


  208. “He focused on the practical side of this teaching, and quickly grasped that self-remembering was the basis of the system.”

    LOL!! Yes, the FOF reinvents itself while riding on the coattails of Tolle.
    Ironic, also, that the so-called “system” is based on self-remembering. I think G. mentions this word all of one time only. It was the idiot O. who came out with the “lucid interpretation” of the 4th way.
    Anyone truly interested in the enneagram devoid of previous associations can start here:
    http://www.sufienneagram.com/overview.html
    Am not posting here much anymore -to the relief of many- prefer the emotionality of the Greater Fellowship website rather than the confrontational atmosphere of this blog. Also, another good thing, I am spared having to gloss over the long posts of the Blog darlings (you know who U R) and the pathetic prose of wannabe poets.
    I do miss the whale….


  209. Old email…(this is about the third try for this post)

    [THE PLAY (1998?):]
    I (Stella Wirk) was invited to Texas (using someone’s free air miles) for about a 5-day weekend to meet the “teacher” of this low key group that had been in existence for maybe

    about 10 years! It is similar in ONE way to the Fourth Way group on line (called “Fourth Way Cafe” on the disinfo site).

    I’m not looking for a school personally; I received a free trip, out of patterns, saw a couple of old friends, and fed curiosity i’s. ;-)

    The name of the group, apparently, is the name of an email list they HAD at the time: AcademyInnerCircle, mostly referred to as “the Academy.”

    After ten years, there now are only about 30+ members in several countries, mostly held together by communicating via email; teacher visits the “centers” (sound familiar?) and

    student hype about the fellow is that he is a “Man No. 6” — and my friend who brought me there to check it out had joined a few months before, due to an “experience” he had

    with this “new” guy on the horizon.

    His experience was that the teacher “zaps” people with his energy, and “throws them into higher centers.” I know, I know. I wanted to see THAT.

    My friend told me he sensed the teacher doing this at the meeting I attended, and I did not. We spoke about this later, and my friend told me he tried it once himself, standing

    next to a friend at the beach, and asked the friend later, “Did you feel that?” and the guy said, “Yeah, what was that?”

    (My friend and I came to the approach that neither of us had verified what this was — it could be from the instinctive center. As for me, my instinctive center isn’t developed

    much – it likes to sit, lie down, and eat! My emotional center – the “instrument of cognition” – detects a lot of information about people when meeting in person, and my friend

    told me that the fellow had done a “zap” of energy during our meeting. Well, he looked into my eyes a few times, and I wasn’t picking up anything unusual, and that’s no

    verification of anything, either. )

    So, I offered to join to help these folks with their email list, hosted by httb://www.onelist.com, as long as I did not have to pay the $150/mo. ‘teaching payment.’ Well, they

    needed more help than money, I guess, so allowed this. This was the first weekend in May 1999.

    Gosh, folks had a LOT of trouble signing up for the email list. They didn’t read instructions at the site for it, and rather would send “whining” kinds of messages for help. I

    can understand this; many were new to internet stuff. Still their attention was rather lacking, and then I noticed the kinds of messages sent to the “school” list.

    They also published what I call “ditties” of poetry, claiming they were “made so emotional” from them, they wanted to share them. They had no clue these were mechanical

    emotions. This is just one example, where in ten years, the Work understanding seemed a bit sketchy, at best.

    [Also, turns out that Mervyn Brady (teacher’s name) was in FOF for 12 years! (He told me to NOT put any FOF information on his group list.) Hmmm.]

    Most msgs were flowery poetry, either made up by students or quoted from “conscious beings” – several people used the number “44” in their email addresses, and one guy used

    Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, and Rodney Colin” as ID names on email. Said he did it for “shocks.” (Thanks. He was a self-appointed shocker.)

    So this friend of mine and I devised a new list for “fourth way talk” as there was none on the main list. We wrote about using Work language, for better understanding, etc.

    About 8 people subscribed to that list (out of 37 at the time).

    Controversy increased, and at long last Mervyn wrote HIS flame about the whole idea. It was a surprise because it was a message that read like a child’s tantrum. He basically

    said what RB said to Harold – “This is NOT a G & O school….” etc.

    Longer story short: My friend had set up the group list, and in order to get off it, he had to delete it! Someone else had to restart it, and all their archives were lost (no

    great loss).

    They won’t be writing to me to find out how to manage the list. haha I unsubbed from the list just before it was deleted.

    A fairly hateful message was received from Mervyn, severing all contact, telling everyone in group to sever contact, and that nobody was to read anything sent to them from

    outside the group — delete message upon seeing who it is from, etc. Mmmm.

    It’s not a surprise. My friend told me Mervyn has a large collection of FOF Journals from which he plagiarizes his “innermost thoughts” for his group. One new student (formerly

    with FOF), just joined a few days ago, wrote to my friend saying some messages he recognized right out of FOF Journals!

    The teacher claims to be a venusian type, and this is one reason he has a “laid back approach” (my friend and I think it’s tramp).

    He also doesn’t want “crystallized learning” brought into his teaching (G&O stuff). Work language is not necessary, etc. He also said that because G&O are dead, the “system” is

    dead!

    Three people had conferred before asking the teacher questions. One of the people sent our questions and comments directly to Mervyn privately without telling us. ACK! We were

    conferring and would be sending them to him, so we don’t know what kind of “spin” the guy put on them. Sure tore open a hornet’s nest!

    The teacher referred to this as “possible crime” in his PUBLIC message tantrum sent to the whole group (discrediting us began quickly).

    He also listed all his members and reminded each one how they had “verified his higher centers” (by sensing the “zap” energy he “sent” them). So they *believe* they have

    verified his higher centers. Gzdz.

    Then he must have realized he would lose his fancy website, and started schmoozing my friend again – flattering him (You are so powerful) and that the teacher would need to

    “monnitor” someone like him, etc. and wanted him to come back! No way.

    That about sizes it up. You may not have any questions; it is a familiar scenrio. If you do, of course, ask away.

    Tell me if you want to use this information anywhere, okay? (before you run with it. ) I have some copies of Mervyn’s messages and other stuff.

    Now that you have the brief notes, you may wish to see my “goodbye letter” to Mervyn where I “let him have it.” ;-) If so, let me know and I’ll send you a copy. ;-D

    >>>>>>>>>

    Hi ho, G,

    Pardon my delay in sending stuff.

    G. wrote:

    > > I wish I had a nickel for every crank asshole who developed into a “man number six” out of the Fellowship of Friends, I’d buy a new car.

    hahahahah! Amen!

    > People see how serious Burton takes himself and believe > that being “intentionally” self-absorbed will make them > conscious. Unfortunately new people believe all this crap.

    Yes, it is indeed unfortunate. And worse.

    > Please send me the photograph you leveled at this nut > by way of departure. I won’t make anything public > you do not intentionally indicate to make public. > If you want me

    to I will set up a little warning > site about this nut. Zap him a little.

    Ah, now I like that idea. His name is Mervyn Brady, an Irishman, and lives in England. He was in FOF for 12 years (I’ll find the specifics of that info for you). He must be

    about 40-ish. I’ll send you a picture of him, too! (I did snatch a few things off the website before it was demolished.)

    Oh, and I can send you the distinctive background from his old web site. hahaha! (I’m envisioning the page already. haha Maybe it’s not your style, though.) haha

    His “school” is called Academy Inner Circle, and payments are $150/month per person. He has about 30 +/- students – a few in canada, a few in USA (Austin, Texas for one; Los

    Angeles, CA for another; don’t know others).

    >>>>>>

    Hindsight is so good. Gadz, this isn’t as “hot” as I thought it was when I wrote it. haha

    Here’s what I sent him:

    Subject: Good-bye Mervyn, and Be Well Date: Tue, 20 Jul 1999 20:20:49 -0700 From: XXX Organization: httb://www.xxx.com To: Mervyn Brady , Mervyn Brady

    Hello, Mervyn,

    [Please read my remarks aloud to yourself, and use an even tone of voice when you do. You will “hear” the even tone, and will hear the truth of my writing.]

    You probably don’t remember my telling you that I do not have problems with your authority, and would back you up or “cover your flank” as you put it that one time you wrote to

    me personally. My aim in regard to you began by wanting the role of being a supportive student and helpful to your group.

    I also mentioned to you, maybe you remember, that I am a “good recruiter.” Within two months, I brought two new members to your circle. (Andrew and Jackeline)

    [Oh, and I’ve let them know what’s going on, too./sw] (this extra remarks or others if any were not in msg)

    I was not going to write more to you about the recent “situation” that seemed to blow out of proportions almost immediately. I decided I will write about it today.

    You may erase this before even reading it, and that is your choice. My conscience is clear.

    I was not going to encourage members to question you in any way, until I saw your immediate negative retort as your “answer” to just a few questions from Rob and me which did

    not require your response to be made public (when our questions were not made public also).

    You showed immediate resentment and negativity, which is unbecoming in a man of your claimed stature, and your rejection of any calm discussion was unreasonable.

    Your large message to everyone that included phrases about “crime,” “crystallized learning,” or remarks that your school is NOT a “G & O” school, was not expected from you — it

    was a childish temper tantrum.

    No one was attacking you; mere suggestions were offered, and it looked (to me) that you went into a panic! Then I realized you must have become identified and did not remember

    that I told you I would HELP you and your group.

    (I was NOT trying to do a “take over” – FAR from it. I don’t want that kind of responsibility for other people! I wanted to be merely a supportive student, and helper. You could

    have discussed this with me in Texas, and you chose not to.)

    In one of your messages, you IMPLIED that maybe you wrote the tirade as a PHOTOGRAPH for Rob (and me). How dare you fly off the handle like that, and discredit publicly our

    legitimate questions and sincere suggestions for you to think about, then claim your intent was to “photograph” us! That is absurd.

    Your “photograph” was completely wrong.

    You were not described to me as a “benign dictator” or that new students to your group have to “give up their so-called ‘will'” at the door, sit down and shut up. Your open

    message effectively “keeps in line” your students so they dare not ask anything!

    None of us can verify the Academy is a “real school” without questions, and it is not verified because you SAY it is.

    However, I saw no reason why the issues that were brought up could not be discussed in a civil manner with the aim for conciliation and harmony. We did not start the negativity

    with you. You started it.

    That our private correspondence was sent to you by one of your regular students showed his lack of understanding of what was actually occurring. We (Rob and I) don’t know what

    kind of “spin” he put on those messages to fuel the fire of your identification.

    Explanations in answer to questions is the norm, and you sent justifications and near second-hand testimonials listing the members who have “verified” your higher centers

    (perhaps by virtue of your “sending” energy to them to “bring them to self remembering,” or whatever you call your power surge).

    Sensing energy coming from you does not verify YOUR higher centers for people who sense that. You are *telling* your students they have verified your higher centers! They

    believe you, unfortunately.

    Your comment about Rob “sobbing” at such an experience was disingenuous or an error on your part. He was not sobbing because of the incident — he was sobbing because he

    included his experience with everything else that had happened and believed he had found a “real Fourth Way school.” Knowing how rare this is, he was overwhelmed emotionally.

    He told me this in a state of shock that you would publicly vilify him the way you did. I considered your response to be mean spirited and duplicitous.

    Anything I cannot verify for myself is put on a “mental shelf” somewhere for later. I never consider opinions or testimonials from others to be legitimate verification, because

    that would not be done by me personally. I know what goes on inside ME; I do not know what goes on inside YOU, or anyone else.

    If you can be honest with yourself, you don’t know either.

    Most of your students believe that they have “verified” your higher centers — because you told them they did. I would not believe it if you told me that.

    The “work” you learned from Robert Burton is not the Fourth Way Work. That you use old FOF Journals to inspire your writings is unfortunate. (Even one of your new ex-FOF

    students recognized the Journals when looking at the list archives and seeing your messages.)

    Rob was one of your most sincere and hard working students. He made tremendous efforts (many hours) in your behalf on that website of your design and according to your wishes,

    and for a long time separated from his frustration at not being able to complete the site, primarily due to your lack of attention to needed details and not your not replying to

    his emails.

    When you are dealing with former FOF members who do join up with you, they will feel quite at home with “King of Hearts” dinners, numbers 44, conscious beings sending emails,

    and not questioning what they do not understand because it probably is something designed to “test” them, plus “the lower cannot see the higher” and all that kind of subjective

    interpretation.

    I was not aware of your attitude towards G&O and “the system” when we met in Texas. It did not occur to me to ask you about it at the time as from what I had heard at that time

    was the group was a “Fourth Way” school.

    My suggestion to you is that you put that information up front, especially to people who DO want the Work language, and who DO respect “the system” — because it works for them.

    It is very legitimate that new students should ask any questions they have. Questions are not “attacks” – rather the search for truth. If truthful replies can be given,

    questions are not a threat of any kind.

    The Fourth Way is not a “dead system” Mr. Brady, although it may be that for you. I was surprised that you felt a “work language” is not necessary for understanding. Without it,

    everything anyone writes, including you, is ambiguous and then must be interpreted by everyone’s individual subjectivity. That is the “Tower of Babel.”

    How you can think that using any language students choose brings mutual understanding among them is a mystery to me. Everyone is subjective; it does not work that way, Mervyn,

    unless you want to keep them in that naive condition.

    “The Way of Heaven is to benefit others and not to injure. The Way of the sage is to act but not to compete.” Lao-tzu [c. 604 – c.531 B.C.]

    I did enjoy meeting you, Mervyn, and truly expected we would have a lasting association. My disappointment is brief, as I don’t hold onto such things. I wish you well.

    [Here I was disingenuous myself. Gadz. /sw]

    I have now “officially” left your group, and am not in contact with any of your current members.

    [well, more or less ‘sincerely’ haha]

    I’ll send you also a copy of his blasting message – subject “Lukewarm…” heh heh

    >>>>>>>>>>>>

    Delivered-To: mailing list academyinnercircle@onelist.com
    Precedence: bulk
    List-Unsubscribe:
    Reply-to: academyinnercircle@onelist.com
    Mime-Version: 1.0
    Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed
    Subject: [academyinnercircle] Lukewarm
    X-Mozilla-Status2: 00000000

    From: mervyn brady

    To All my Students,
    It is 1.43 am here in Ramsgate.
    I am filled with a great sadness and felt the need to communicate with you ALL.
    I have heard a lot lately about Gurdjieff and Ouspensky.
    May I remind you all I am no Stranger to their work and their systems.
    I value their work greatly and will always be grateful for their legacy.
    For me that was 32 years ago when homeless and crashing in a friend,s house, I read Ouspensky,s discription of “Self Remembering”
    I cried and jumped for joy at the same time. I KNEW this was the piece of the jigsaw that was missing.The rest was interesting and certainly helped to understand the Laws that

    Stopped us from doing it.
    I enjoyed the Stories of Gurdjieff and how he “Kicked Ass”. I dreamed of what it would have been like there with him . I was honest enough with myself to know I probably would

    not have lasted one day around him.
    Over the years many Students would get glassy eyed and tell me I should be more like Gurdjieff.
    Well I am Not.
    Not even close on the Mechanics scale.
    I would never be able to match such a man in any way, but I also could never match my wife(Martial) in any way either. However there was one way I possibily could, and that was

    in Self Remembering.
    When my Higher Centers emerged I was like a man stranded in a strange land. I did not have an Organisation to bale me out. I had to start right at the bottom.
    To go looking for Gems where I could. In respect to my former Teacher Robert Burton (Although in 12 yrs I only saw him twice for brief moments),I did not Bookmark Or take any of

    his Students. did not blaspheme him and had a gratitude that ran deep.
    I did not ask him to be my friend, as he made it quite clear what his position was and I respected that. I left my ex wife of 8 years there behind me.
    I felt the real test of one’s higher Centers was if they could lift another person into theirs.
    Each one of you with the exception of Jackine and Andrew have verified that they exist.
    I saw Robert F. racked with sobbing in the Hilton Hotel, and comforted by our little Solar Sam. I saw his happiness as his wife experienced not only Self Remembering but my

    Spiritual Son Sullins brought her into a Higher State
    I saw Sarah S. soar and watched her Husband Sullins Higher Centers being born.
    I saw Alberto and Barbara experiencing the “Magic”
    I saw Ken and watch him emerging.
    I have looked into Sue R. Soul and she has seen and touched mine. I saw Jason and AK coming to my car in LA outside Sullins and Sarah,s apartment and asking me who they saw with

    their own eyes me changing into. I saw Ak that first morning in the restaurant as her Soul Lept.
    I saw That most gentle of gentlemen John M. soar in ectasy and am so proud of his gentle and loving emergence.
    Kerin changing from a young girl to a Lady and handling her life with pride. The sweetness of her inner world a pleasure to behold. John R. in New York, So many hero,s out

    there, all struggling with there weakness and plays.
    Harris,Wise Rene and Miriam. Karen, Irena and Daniel all have experienced Higher States.
    Olly, Sabine Phil, Sam, Jane Ian John M. all have verified that something occured and is occuring. To those I have not mentioned, it is only space that does not permit it.
    A Student asked me on the phone what do I want from him and other Students?
    I want nothing only that you keep growing.
    You are my Guest and have my goodwill.
    I have no agenda, other than to pursue wisdom, and when attained to use it to pursue more.
    My oldest Student Marie and her Husband Ji out there on the Canadian frontiers. Ask them what they have verified and what keeps them in the work? I have no need to EVER justify

    myself to any Human again. The deed is done, you all have had your signs. Go in Peace or stay

    “But if you are lukewarm, I will spew thee out of my mouth” Jesus

    Mervyn

    ————————— ONElist Sponsor —————————- ———————————————————————–

    To speak the truth is the most difficult thing in the world; one must study a great deal and for a long time in order to be able to speak the truth. The wish alone is not

    enough. To speak the truth one must know what the truth is and what a lie is, and first of all in oneself. Gurdjieff

    >>>>>>>>>>

    and another – letter to former FOF person who joined Mervyn’s group after I told him about it. Ack! At least he is noticing something, and think he will quit after his $150 is

    used up. (monthly “tithe”)

    This one, keep A’s name private, and if quoted, no name or xxxx@…blahblah.

    My comments are okay to use, openly, if you wish; they are my opinions. ;-)

    (Try to not get me in trouble, of course. hahah can’t afford any more lawsuits!)

    Attached Message

    Dear A,

    A wrote: > > Dear S, > > I will consider all communication on this topic private – of > course, as I have declared on numerous occasions, I trust you.

    Thank you, ol’ friend. I appreciate your trust.

    > What is going on? I noticed that the archived material on > the academy list was primarily from Renaissance Journals; > much of it being Burton’s own words….

    You are correct, that is what they WERE. Mervyn was in FOF for 12 years and collected and saved his journals. He quotes them prolifically, without any reference to them, as if

    they are his own words. When I joined the group in Texas while visiting Robert F., Mervyn told me to keep FOF iformation OFF the list. I supposed only because it is such

    negative information; I did not know at that time he was using journals to plagerize from them!

    His reaction on the list to a few questions openly asked of him resorted in a retort from him that could best be described as a childish tantrum. He also accused Robert F. and

    “his ilk” of crime!

    I wrote a letter to the list addressing some of Mervyn’s comments, mentioning that 3 people conferring to ask the teacher some questions about serious concerns cannot be

    considered a ‘crime wave.’

    As there has been little posting to the list, I’m guessing a lot of emails are going back and forth NOT on the list, to keep his people “in line.”

    Most of them have passed from believing him to worshipping him. Sound familiar? Same buffers, too, when challenged about one of Mervyn’s statements. Some also believe that if he

    gives no response, it is a “photograph” for them!

    Also, his discrediting Robert F. and I openly on the list didn’t set well for a man claiming to be #6 (and we’ve heard that before, too).

    The group is an imitation of FOF, Andrew, in many ways, and the members have no idea because they aren’t given any information, and by now would probably not even look at my FOF

    website report (which is on a new page now; ok to give out info: httb://www.50megs.com/xxx ).

    The teacher does not teach. He does not want to use “the system” or work language! I didn’t know these things until I started reading the list where several people use the names

    of “conscious beings” as their email address. They like to “shock” one another.

    Asking Mervyn about some of these things he agreed with me and thanked me for “watching his ass.” Hmmm. He didn’t tell the group to stop using conscious beings emails, or other

    things he agreed with me about on in private mail.

    A lot of the members have little or no understanding of Work ideas, as the group (it turns out) is getting Burton’s version of it, with the exception that Rob and I think Mervyn

    is not playing around with boys.

    Mervyn goes to meetings and does not teach. He muses. Nobody asks any significant work questions.

    Before you joined list, and controvrsey began, people were publishing poetry or quoting something and saying “how emotional” they were made by the item. They don’t know the

    difference between the parts of centers and are not observing the mechanical parts being evoked. Apparently they do use the deck of cards labels, yet don’t seem to know what

    they mean.

    (The AcademyInnerCircle list was deleted today. Maybe you saw Rob F’s message about it. He is leaving the group, and does not want to handle the list for them, and as he created

    the list, he’s the “owner” so has to delete it to get off it. (I unsubscribed earlier, yesterday).

    > I did not feel that I should bring it up to the local LA > people, and I had not had time yet to inquire “en forum”, > though, perhaps since fear is my chief feature, I may

    have > put it off indefinitely – that seems the strongest possibility. > Still, I would like to know what is going on?

    I can understand how you feel. Everybody is like that – in the group they all support each other’s buffers. If you had brought it up to the folks in LA, they probably wouldn’t

    know what you are talking about, and would disbelieve that Mervyn would “do such a thing.” As they are not privy to informtion about FOF, they also would not believe it.

    > Does this mean that Mervyn is a fake?…

    It does for me. I’m sorry you may not be able to get your money back; you could try, of course. The teacher admits to having a tramp feature, though doesn’t talk about it.

    Rather he describes himself as “laid back” and “easy going” venusian. Personally, methinks venus-merc. He lies too much, and venusians want to help people, not use them.

    > Is this a new moon event?…

    I don’t think so. Moonbeams may help it along.

    > Are we all being passed through a large meat grinder? If so, > to what purpose?

    hahaha, to keep people in the group. Mervyn learned from Burton, it’s clear.

    > I appreciate any light you can throw on the darkness I feel today.

    Well, I hope I didn’t throw so much light that it set a fire.

    If you have any other questions, go ahead and ask them of me; I’ll fill in blanks. We won’t be discussing the group on the fourthway list – as that is for Work ideas and such.

    There were 12 people subscribed, and they all unsubbed in one day (all Academy members, maybe were told to do it).

    I have more people I can get on this new 4thway list.

    Hang in there with me, A. Thanks much.


  210. Exlax #208

    “I do miss the whale…”

    You made me laugh out loud and cry at the same time, my friend! If we meet someday, I will give you a hug, and I will want to hear your story…

    Namaste, Exlax!


  211. Mervyn Brady info:

    http://fofgraduates.wordpress.com/2007/06/08/graduates-of-the-fellowship-of-friends/

    #35, botton of the page

    moderation issues here


  212. #205 Unoanimo

    That is what I thought it meant too. Is there another interpretation?


  213. Greetings to ALL old guard readers who once upon a time were leaders… and to those who will never dare take Joel’s cue and sit at the table with the rest of us trying to unravel the deeper meaning in this increasingly macabre story.

    Welp, perhaps you’re not speaking, but at least you’re reading!

    Bless you Joel for speaking and wanting to dance with all of these heavy, heavy hearts. I could see in your eyes when we met last month that you are grateful I still walk this earth. So, enough said about past faux pas. I think we all acted in good faith. We had a conflict of interest at the time, and a different interpretation of faith. I always enjoy looking into intelligent eyes and was happy to reconnect with yours. The only beef I ever really had with you is the one described below. Which, if one has to have a beef with somebody, was quite a doosey!

    (& Old Dog, not to belabor our earlier exchange but, had I not successfully negotiated with the robbers before you got home you’d have had your head blown off the minute you walked in the door.)

    Dear blog readers, picture this:
    1980, June, early evening, Pre-Guiliani NYC.
    I rented both teaching town houses for the benefit of the center. Joel and Sandra forced me to have a new student I was uncomfortable with move into the already crowded house I lived in at 92nd Street and Lex. A few days after this student settled into his new digs he forgot to lock the front door while he went out to have a smoke on the front stoop. Two teenage robbers pulled a gun on him and got in the house. All three paraded into my room (where I was reading Gail Sheehe’s PASSAGES… little did I know I was about to have one!) and did their thing.

    The robbers wanted to shoot the new student right away because to quote them, “we don’t like your face!”. I had to convince them not to kill the poor bastard because I’d have been next. They rummaged through all six bedrooms (I shared a room with Helene. F. at the time. Hi Helene!) As they were about to leave they found a fevered third student ensconced upstairs in bed with the flu. They brought him down in his Dr. Denton flap in back PJs (not kidding) and locked the three of us in the bathroom by tying the door closed with a rope. I promised them I’d give them 15 minutes to get away before calling the police if they promised not to kill us. They agreed and as they were walking out of the house Old Dog walked in. They quickly tied Old Dog up in a chair and went on their way with a laundry bag full of goodies, including a German pistol they found in one student’s room (so now they had TWO guns!) Old Dog untied himself from the chair and untied the bathroom door for us. THX Old Dog!

    After the robbery I wanted to move into the OTHER house of which I was, as I said, the lease holder (89th Street). I was spooked from the robbery (to put it mildly) and couldn’t sleep in the 92nd street house anymore. Joel and Sandra (center directors), who lived there, didn’t want me to move into 89th Street because they didn’t want me to move in because they didn’t want me to move in because they didn’t want me to move in … In desperation I started looking for a studio apartment and then realized this was ridiculous since I was already the lease holder on TWO houses in Manhattan! I put my foot down and called Miles. He reluctantly got involved. I ended up moving in to the 89th Street house but Joel, Sandra and I were pretty pissed at each other and never did any of the swinging that is now so popular in the fof. (Did we miss out on something guys?) During this same time I divorced John F., graduated NYU nursing school, had a steamy interlude with Michael J., got engaged to Thomas E. and traded my beloved NYC for quick stint at Renaissance, two yrs in London and a decade in Venice.

    So, there you have it Joel. I toyed with writing you a private email but I figured someone else might get value out of the story so here it is. I hope you come to see Talking with Angels some day. Being known as a Method actress I’ve put the whole episode to good use.

    Much Love,
    Shelley


  214. #204 Traveler

    Thanx for that effort. I just spent 5hrs. on a conference call with Ken Wilber and three other people and my brain is fried (and it ain’t that great raw). He is brilliant. He moves effortlessly and tirelessly around varieties of systems of knowledge. I haven’t been looking at Integral theory for too long (just prior to discovering this blog). I have read his “Integral Spirituality” and “In Over Our Heads” by Robert Kegan”which is a more rough cut treatment of cognitive development. I haven’t gotten to spiral dynamics but it is included in Wilber’s book.

    I am barely a novice in understanding Integral theory but what struck me immediately while reading was that without looking at cognitive stages of consciousness and “shadow’ (split-off and repressed parts of oneself which can occur at any stage) elements of oneself in one’s pursuit of “states” of consciousness one is in for trouble.

    To put it over simply Integral Theory is the marriage of leading edge western psychology and leading edge eastern mystical teachings and their lineages.

    I asked him specifically about “shadow” in relation to “pain-body” and relating that to cults and teachers in cults. He likened “pain-body” to neurosis or a kind of double samsara. He mentioned the first Noble Truth that life is suffering to begin with then we twist it neurotically and make it that much worse(I am paraphrasing so don’t blame him for my distortions). Then he related the story (zen or sufi?) of a monk in a dark room who imagined for a long time that there was a coiled deadly snake in the corner. Then one day someone turned on a light and it turned out it was but a coiled rope.

    Related to gurdjieff-ouspensky he mentioned the ‘trickster’ (intentional insincerity?) element of it and how it can be missused. I told him that in the group I had been in the teacher had said that he knew that certain of his “behaviors” were a burden to his students which they needed to transform and I said I thought that was crap and he said he agreed, it is crap.

    I am wiped out. Maybe I will remember more stuff later.


  215. Hello Yesri Baba ~

    Thank you for sharing your day, the call that is ~

    You wrote ~

    “He likened “pain-body” to neurosis or a kind of double samsara.”

    _____________________

    Yes, these are the ‘effects’, did he touch upon the origin of the cause?

    Has he ‘really’ read the book ‘Daughter of Fire’?

    Just curious, as to whether he’s a cerebral kinda guy or whether he’s got tha stuff, if you know what I mean, how did the phone/conference call ‘feel’ to your sense of being the words or were the words being more themselves than the self speaking them?

    Unoanimo on the curious… let me know when you’re rested.

    :) L.T.Y.A.


  216. Re: Post #212; Shelley M.

    Dear Shelley,

    I am one of the 20,000+ “lurkers” on this site. I have enjoyed your comments. Thank you.

    The only visual image I have of you is from many years ago — I strolled by as you were lounging on a chair in the sunny courtyard of the Venice teaching house.

    As a simple and rather ‘new’ “good student” traveling through Europe back then, I was in awe of the place, and of you. However, we never actually met.

    In my mind, you were and are a talented, beautiful, and pleasantly witty person. When you write about the Fellowship, for better or for worse, it brings these distant memories into focus, even though our ‘plays’ were worlds apart.

    After all this time — and knowing that you left the FoF many years ago — I wanted to ask you a personal question (well, as personal as it gets on this blog, anyway!):

    What do you honestly think your ‘astral body’ has gained, or accumulated, over the years of your in-school — and out-of-school — experiences?

    This question assumes, of course, that there is such a thing as an astral body (soul), and that it can and must be grown over time through transforming various types of life experiences.

    You obviously have enjoyed a very rich and creative life and, like me, you most likely sport a few wrinkles of age by now.

    So, from the perspective of that “good student” and fellow traveler who walked by that day in Venice, and who happened to cast an admiring, sideways glance your way, I would very much appreciate your honest response.

    And, above all, thank you for being who you are, dear Shelley!

    My2bits


  217. on June 24, 2007 at 5:15 am Howard Carter

    To Traveler – 204,

    In your wide ranging presentation there was one glaring (to my mind) conclusion you failed to arrive at; that Howard sees truths that you do not see. Or that Howard believes what he believes because he actually had a choice between your beliefs and other beliefs and he chose another, more truthful, one.

    Of course if you admitted that possibility into existence it would refute what you call truth; endanger your truths.
    And yet shouldn’t it be at least admitted into the realm of all that is possible, for the sake of dissussion if for no other reason? If we could put a truth-o-meter on the aggregate words of all the bloggers, one by one, wouldn’t the meter peg higher for one, second highest for another until everyone is registered in their own slot?

    Now I can accept the possibility that Traveler’s, or anyone else’s, meter would peg higher than mine. Could you accept as a possibility that Howard’s may out peg yours, maybe even take the grand prize(someone would have to win)?

    What are we really saying when we dismiss another’s belief’s because they are diametrically opposed to our own? When we do that are we actually revealing more about our psychology than the psychology of our subject matter?

    The human mind sees only so far and then falsely concludes there is nothing to see beyond that point.

    Thought emanating from the second state, no matter how eloquent, reaches a limit. The ceiling of second state thought is the floor of thought emanating from the third state. What one state sees as wise the other sees as folly. The lower self is clever, but just clever enough to outsmart itself.

    Robert may actually be a “deluded sociopath”(your words). It’s equally possible that Influence C in their infinite wisdom knew that if they created his role to appear that way it would keep the ranks of the school unencumbered with lesser logic.


  218. Howard Carter 215

    “What are we really saying when we dismiss another’s belief’s because they are diametrically opposed to our own?”

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

    Make sure to remember your Self rather than simply remembering this insistent devotion to your beliefs.

    Men ready and willing to die for their beliefs are insane. In time all beliefs eventually prove untrue.

    There are no differences between beliefs, all beliefs are imagination.

    Belief creates the illusion of knowing without the inconvenience of thinking.

    No genuine work of psychological evolution coerces its applicants with the demand of belief.

    Adopted beliefs based on half-truths are more powerful a social force against the general spread of truth and intelligence than all the malicious deceits the Devil could ever devise.

    Do not believe anything the mind tells you, only consider what you tell it.

    What to believe means nothing, in the Work it is what not to believe.

    By the time the public believes in it the truth has already become a lie.

    Belief in the whispers of the mind for good or ill is the engineer of a man’s troubles, a man with no belief in the murmuring mind has already escaped more than half the problems of life.

    When those with opposing beliefs kill each other over their beliefs then everyone wins.


  219. on June 24, 2007 at 6:54 am Ames Gilbert

    To Traveller (#13-204)
    Thank you for pointing out the stages that we may become ‘stuck’ in. It is true that I haven’t taken that into account in my dealings with Howard. I’ll also refresh myself with some Jung, Adler, Dreikus and Campbell on the same subject, and try to recognize where I am stuck! Thanks again…


  220. #214 Unoanimo

    He began by saying something like : ” Oh , you mean the baby within the baby” or something like that in relation to “pain-body” but I didn’t understand so I didn’t relate it. Mean anything to you?

    He seems spontaneous, quick to laugh and able to cut to the heart of seemingly complex stuff. Not that I should judge but from that conversation and the videos I have seen of him I weigh him similarly to the way I weigh you: If he is not what he seems he does a hell of a job faking it.


  221. on June 24, 2007 at 7:16 am Howard Carter

    To Medusa – 202,

    The sequence is mathamatical as far as I can tell; it was designed to accomodate both the slowest and the fastest students. If intoned correctly and with sufficient effort it will produce 30 seconds of presence. Since presence and imagination don’t co-exist it can be immediately verified that doing the sequence will reduce imagination for that span of time.

    Much of the value of the sequence is in doing it the same way (with different themes) each time. Like all disiplines; doing it the same way allows one to build expertise and also to guage one’s progress.

    “-if the 4 wordless breaths are the moment in which you are finally introducing presence… why don’t you start breathing wordlessly right away instead of counting?!”

    Ideally one introduces presence at the first Be and each “command” like “Hold” prolongs the state. As far as going right to the four wordless breaths, if one can routinely do that one is probably ahead of the game.

    Another valuable aspect with the sequence is that it is tied to one’s breath (three seconds betweed Be and Hold for example). A breath, symbolically, is the smallest measurment of our life force.

    While Robert awakened without it, it is obvious he thinks our opportunities to be present increase with the use of it and after using it I would agree.

    “-why don’t you do a much longer sequence,
    and keep your focus going for 7, 12, 25 or 63 more steps?”

    If one finishes one sequence one is free to start another; I’ve found that to be the most effective way.

    “-if the 4 breaths are supposed to be done in private, doesn’t that automatically mean that you can only do also the sequence when you are ALONE? Or you just run out of sight?”

    I’ve not heard of that condition; but even if you only do it when alone that would be a good deal of time.

    Additionally, I wouldn’t recomend holding your breath until you can get away and be alone; expecially if that would take a few minutes or more.


  222. on June 24, 2007 at 7:21 am Howard Carter

    Graduates – 216,

    I believe every word of what you write; now if you could just take your own advice…


  223. mathamatical:

    mispelling for

    ‘mahatmatical’, referring to Lord Buddha and the continue use of the awareness of breath to maintain an awake state.


  224. Hmmm, should I respond to Howard Carter or go fill up the Grand Canyon with BBs one by one?

    To wank or not to wank, that is the question.


  225. Howard Carter 221
    Graduates – 216,

    I believe every word of what you write…

    **********

    Try to verify that your teacher is a smiling corpse, suspend your “I’M SAVED!” beliefs and look at him with your senses. That thing is already deceased.


  226. on 23 Jun 2007 at 11:47 pm
    In post #205 unoanimo wrote

    I need to respond to only a few points I simply lack the energy to go over every twist and turn of these lenghty post’s.
    You wrote a lot of opinions about sex. Did you notice that you left out anything real and personal. It was all about “Them”, what “they” do, did, think, feel. In reality this has nothing to do with what I posted. When I wrote I experienced difficulty in writing about sex it was in term’s of a honest personal account of my sex life. What happened, how the experience of the Fellowship of Friends effected me and how Robert personally effected me.
    Some other posters have touched on their own experiences. These personal experience are the subject not your sweeping theories and genaralities. .

    In relation to Shakespeare you are missing the point. I am doing an analysis from a specific perspective. If you challenge the perspective that is a different subject than the essay itself. Claiming a University Professor as a reference amounts to challenging the basis of the argument I.E. “The System” . You fail to substantiate this arguement. Your earlier response and the contents of this post both jump around randomly without addressing the specifics. Part of why I sound aggressive is that you are insulting. You seem to assume I have done no research into the scholastic interpretations. Every University, College and even Jr. Colleges has Professors who hold a Doctor of English. There are 1000’s of English Professors. There are many who earn their living with their supposed knowledge of Shakespeare. So I am not challenging one scholar but all. This goes to the original premise If the system is correct then the majority of these are man #3. So before it is relevant you need to challenge the veracity of the System. I believe that in terms of the system Shakespeare was at least man #6. Man with objective consciousness. My analysis is meant to be for someone who is familiar with the system. There is an extensive literature on “The 4th Way”. For my essay to achive its aim it needs to agree with the ideas and concepts as presented in this literature.

    The idea is that the study have internal logic, that it is consistent. I think I achieve that. To criticize the essay you need to either challenge the premise or the way the parts relate to the premise.

    Your comments fall outside the scope of the argument. It is not a question of your opinion. The subject is not what you think but interpreting the Sonnets in terms of the system. You are flippant and superficial and write as if your opinion has some objective value. While This is a part of the freedom of the blog . I however find it insulting in terms of an intellectual argument. If you want to be superficial and flippant that is your right as it is mine to treat you as I would anyone else who does so.
    My policy then is what I call the cooperative mule approach.
    This relates to the following story “Once a Farmer saw an advertisement for the Sale of a large brown Cooperative Missouri mule. What captured his interest was the word cooperative one not usually associated with any kind of mule. So he went to see this wonder. Arriving at his destination he enquired about this remarkable animal. He was brought by the owner to an enclosure within which sat a large brown and impressively powerful looking mule. The owner took a hold of a rope around the animals neck and pulled while saying “Here Mule”. Nothing happened. He repeated this again after which he reached down a picked up a 4 foot length of 2×4. He swung and hit the mule right up side of the head. He then picked up the rope and again said “Here Mule” at which point the Mule stood and came over as instructed. He turned to the Framer and said, “see he’s cooperative you just need to get his attention first”.

    I am actually grateful for the challange because it engages the emotional parts of centers. Both the Queen of hearts and Queen of Diamonds. Thus becoming a third force to articulate what seems self evident to me. I find it interesting that I am vain enough to belive my opinion more accurate than all the professors in the world an at the same time I don’t ussually care enough to write out an analysis or argue the point I find it sufficent that it works for me.
    I approach the Sonnets emotionally . I ussually use them as a mantra to block the mechanical part of the intellectual center. They are not only good at that but given enough repetitions I seem to begin to understand them at deeper levels. It is tedious to disect even one with the intellectual center and even more so with the moving center. As a jack of Spades type writing without mistakes does not come of itself. So a post like this requires editing as I don’t want to be embarrassed at my poor language skills while developing an intellectual arguement.


  227. on June 24, 2007 at 9:46 am Lust for Life

    Howard Carter, I thought you must be Girard Haven, you sound just like him but then remembered that he often used to say “both can be true”, which is at odds with your sliding scale theory of truth.

    Anyhow, let us accept your premise that RB is conscious, has a view of the truth unseeable from our perspective because he lives in a permanently higher state and we live in a lower state. This viewpoint reinforces the inbuilt desire in us as humans to follow an authority, rather than to rely on ourselves and look within ourselves and use our innate intelligence for finding the truth. Look around you and see that this is the human condition, everyone seeking outside themselves for someone, some group or religion or organization to align with and follow.

    So RB is a higher being, he points the way by providing tools for students to use to reach higher states of prescence; do this exercise, stop imagination, practice the sequence, self remember…sometimes this seems to work in that moments of ‘prescence’ appear, at other times maybe not. All pretty benign and positive so far.

    He also requests large monetary payments, lives like a king, has sex with many of his followers, and excommunicates followers who leave the organization, unless they wish to return in which case further large fees are demanded. He also reinforces the dependency that followers begin to form on the organization, by convincing them that this is a unique organization, and encouraging social and other forms of reliance on it. How can this be explained by the argument that he is a higher being? Does not your innate inner intelligence indicate to you that there is some discrepancy here?

    Surely a genuine higher being would encourage you to find the higher in yourself, guiding you to more self reliance and true freedom, to a state where there is no conflict or battle, but a realization of what is true and right from the place which is within us all, but covered by layers of ‘thought’, ‘conditioning’ and ‘belief’.

    Should a devoted follower admit the possibility that RB may be a charlatan, then they will naturally undergo a great deal of inner conflict, confusion and fear. It requires one to see that ones previously held beliefs or assumptions are flawed. As we invest our identity in our beliefs, this is naturally quite traumatic. However, continuing to rely on that which is beneath all thoughts, beliefs, assumptions, fears, concerns; our underlying innate being and intelligence, our awareness that we are, just as everyone and everything else is, allows us to let this go, and the scales that covered our eyes regarding the FOF fall away.

    Howard, I know this because I know and understand exactly what you are saying, have said all this to myself in the past, and have lived through and beyond it. Please try to lay aside your own vision of what is true and see if you cannot adopt the above vision of truth for a few moments, to see whether it reverberates within you as possible.


  228. 206 Lust for Life.
    Well baby ive had it in the ear before and thats no lie ive got a lust for life. Lou Reed.


  229. 206 Lust for Life . I forgot to say thanks for the relative scale posting its better than the one I knew it goes further up. again thanks. Cy.


  230. on June 24, 2007 at 12:59 pm Another Name

    Dear Howard carter and others,

    Watch, watch, watch

    You can be aware( present )and in imagination.
    Robert never denied that when it was asked: He answered: ” Why would we want to be in imagination”, when we can take in impressions….?
    He loves to be in control…change things. Thing as they are….could be a watching exercise…try it.

    Breathing is not 3 seconds….if your breath is 3 seconds it is really to fast and you are somehow not relaxed enough when you do the 4 X ? breaths you will noticed that it can go to 4- 6 seconds. Watch it is so worth it.

    Words are part of the functions is our way to communicate and is part of the physical body.

    The spirit has no words and can connect to conscience. Sit still for a while and breath. This is a way to come into contact with what is called ” presence” your inner self, Your inner source….

    For ex lax I think we met several years ago and you gave me the golden tip that the food in the apollo d’Oro had not enough calcium and a lack of calcium causes bone pains….I bought some vitamins and yes it went away. Thanks for that still grateful for that sharing.
    Please, ex lax when I read your letters I can sense the anger and behind anger there is an ocean of pain and sadness. The greater fellowship is a warm blanket , enjoy and find friends who can sit with you and help you…..let it out before it gets toxic. That is part of the physical world and can help your spirit. When my sadness came out I became more tolerable and caring for the ones around me…

    Love, to all of you


  231. Howard Carter #215 You are a brave soul to expound your thoughts. Only by sharing yourself will you get to know yourself.

    “The human mind sees only so far and then falsely concludes there is nothing to see beyond that point.”

    Good insight! Doesn’t it apply you or could it be that you are blinded by the faith in your teacher?

    “The lower self is clever, but just clever enough to outsmart itself.”

    One could reasonably argue that if the lower self is clever enough to outsmart itself, then make no mistake, it can outsmart others. While we are alive on this plane our higher self is shackled to our lower self, is it not? What would a man be like who used his higher self to outsmart others into feeding his lower self at the expense of their higher selves?

    And, more importantly, wouldn’t the higher self then be clever enough to realize when one is outsmarted by another? It therefore follows that it would be one’s conscience (seated in one’s higher self) that would empower one to take action based upon such a realization.

    “Robert may actually be a “deluded sociopath”. It’s equally possible that Influence C in their infinite wisdom knew that if they created his role to appear that way it would keep the ranks of the school unencumbered with lesser logic.”

    Conversely, if your concept of ‘Influence C’ was mistaken, and Robert was indeed a deluded sociopath, then yes, the ranks of the school would be filled with those of lesser logic, correct? Isn’t that one of the main arguments from many on this blog? Once the lower self accepts a belief it will tend to deny all evidence to the contrary. This is lesser or irrational logic. At one time I accepted the belief that Robert had conscious being, yet once I experienced him up close and personal, my conscience would not let deny the mounting evidence to the contrary. I either had to sublimate my conscience to his will or take the hard road of leaving him with my conscience intact. Obviously, I chose the later, and I am eternally grateful that I did.

    #219

    “A breath, symbolically, is the smallest measurement of our life force.”

    Are you sure about that? Are you quoting your teacher? I would think that the heartbeat would be the smallest measurement of the life force. Didn’t our heart start beating in the womb long before we took our first breath?


  232. Deleted, duplicate post. –ES


  233. on June 24, 2007 at 2:39 pm Life Person

    Howard (215) you say you’re willing to assume Traveler’s “truth” might “outpeg” yours, and ask if it is just possible that your “truth” is the highest among those being discussed. Well, anyone reading the blog can see you are not really willing to make any such assumption, you are simply making a rhetorical point, which in this particular case is another word for lie. And that’s the point. You are willing to lie to yourself and to the other bloggers, in this case about your purported open-mindedness, in order to defend your own world view. Those of us who spent years in the Fellowship before moving on have been there, done that; we stood right where you’re standing, for many years, with the same perspective you imagine is “more true.” There must be hundreds of person-years of experience on this blog of intimate familiarity with all the what-Robert-says-really-is-true I’s. Unless you choose to believe that no one who has ever left the Fellowship could possibly have experienced the world as you do, or they would not have left. Yes, seen that one, too.

    On the other hand, you have no personal familiarity at all with the experience of having entertained, and believed, those I’s for years, and then seen through them.

    So, no, Howard. I do not suppose that your truth just might be the higher one, because I’ve tried it on, lived with it, and saw it for what it is. If you’d like to do the same with my perspective, then we can discuss matters on an even field.


  234. 219

    ““A breath, symbolically, is the smallest measurement of our life force.”

    RB just pluck’s this shit from the air, and you guys just latch right on to it with no thinking at all.

    Wake the f**k up.


  235. “I believe Ouspensky and Rodney Collin called the breath the smallest measurement of time.”

    That’s how I remember it, in relation to life spans and time for the different cosmos.


  236. Scale


  237. Wasn’t it “time is breath”?


  238. on June 24, 2007 at 3:47 pm Howard Carter

    To Yesri Baba – 222

    You would be better off filling your “grand canyon” with Be Be’s.


  239. on June 24, 2007 at 3:58 pm Veronicapoe

    Graduates/223

    Amen.


  240. on June 24, 2007 at 4:03 pm Veronicapoe

    Whalerider:

    Truth and Reconciliation Commission — good analogy. It sticks.


  241. on June 24, 2007 at 4:11 pm Howard Carter

    To Ames and Laura,

    Howard Carter (#12-48) said, “The real disconnect occurs when we value the events of this world more than those of the next world.”

    “Holy baloney!…

    So, you have verified the ‘next world’, huh?”

    I have verified Influence C. They are spirits. Where do spirits come from and go to if not the spirit world?

    The above comment of mine that you quoted is rather pedestrian in relation to spiritual matters. If you really cannot relate to it, or believe it, then the disconnect I mentioned is much more profound with some than I
    initially thought.

    “You are right, Howard, this is where you disconnect from the breadth and depth and joy of this life, or at least diminish the potential.”

    That’s not true; its a logical misconception on your part. I love this life, love many people in it, but I love life mainly because it provides the vessel to get us to the next, more important, form of existence. And I fully expect to meet my dearest loved ones again in some form. I certainly don’t
    value this body, that will be dust soon, more than the spirit that pre-dated this body, and that will exist after this body.

    “You have hypnotized yourself to value the events of this actual, incontrovertibly true life less than the theoretical events of the next lifetime—or however many lifetimes, each enumerated for you by Burton himself”.

    I needed Robert/the FoF to introduce and provide me the correct invironment to remember myself, through the students in the centre I joined in, but I verified Influence C, hence the siprit world/next world, before I physically met Robert.

    The “which liftime” part is not critical to know. Once a child understands the concept of grades in a school he or she can accept that he is in a lower grade now and will be in a higher grade next year; he might even have a glimpse of the homework of the next grade if he has an older sibling or
    friend.

    “So, did you at the same time verify that multiple lifetimes are necessary for you to awaken—that is, according to Burton, the self–appointed intermediary between you and awakening in this lifetime.”

    It makes sense to me; certainly does not prevent me from doing what is necessary in any given moment. No matter what lifetime one is on one has to be present to it as much as one can muster the energy to do so. When I first
    heard the information of 9 lives I just assumed I was on the 9th. That way it was a third force to do whatever I could, thinking that this was my last go round. If I’m wrong about it, at worst I’ve accumulated a few extra efforts and will go into the next one with a small surplus.

    The existence of an enlightened intermediary permeates throughout all sacred scriptures and traditions.

    “How about past lifetimes? You have certainly fully entered Burton’s fantasy, and accepted his diminution of your possibilities in this life. How very convenient for him (he gets a lifetime of obedience, adoration, money and service), how very sad for you.”

    Past lifetimes I cannot control, so I don’t think about them much. I can still control a part of this one so that is where my energy goes.

    Obedience is a higher law; when was the last time you saw a planet misbehave? When the correct third force mixes with first and second forces obedience ensues.
    I feel I’ve also verified that through my own observations and through higher knowledge that came into my hands.

    I don’t adore Robert; mostly I am deeply gratful for connecting with a conscious school and teacher.

    “Why don’t you write down on sheets of paper (you’ll need a ream) all the things that Burton has told you, directly and indirectly. Put a check against the things that you have personally verified. Calculate the ratio of verified to unverified, and verified to unverifiable. Then, by all means,
    share the ratios and the list of things you have verified with us, please. That would serve you, and us, much better.”

    I don’t think so;(in case you are not being facetious) the list would take too much time and would only become fodder for someone or another’s mockery.

    Ames, I really don’t think you have tossed aside these principles or beliefs being spoken of. What I think is that you are first of all distancing yourself from RB/FoF. If the FoF is the bathwater, these principles/beliefs are the baby. One doesn’t have to throw out the baby, but it’s less complicated, less risky. One is less apt to run into contradictions.

    Golda Mier, the former Israeli PM, speaking about Palestinian parents who send their children off to be suicide bombers, once said – “They hate Israelis more than they love their children.” Not that I’m comparing anyone on the
    blog to a bomber, but the point is this: Many on the blog (maybe you amoung them?) loathe Robert/FoF to the point that you would say or believe almost anything that served to discredit/bring down one or both of them.

    Of course, if someone does value this world more than the next (I don’t want to put words in your mouth, so correct me if this isn’t you) then they will have a lot of problems with a conscious teacher’s behavior, as most of their
    instructions come from the other, unseen world and most of their efforts aim to serve that same unseen world.

    The earthly behavior of conscious teachers are matchless to the other world, but shoddy, even criminal seeming, to this world. This is all part of the payment for diciples. And it certainly serves to seperate the ones who have locked in on the other world from the ones who are still unbelievers,
    or unconvinced.

    Christ’s “crimes” were considered heinous in his day. He
    was put to death by the government for them.

    The morality of heaven is much different than the morality of earth. Around this fact is where a lot of the disconnect begins.

    PS Laura,

    This post pertains some to our recent dialog.


  242. Re: Howard 13/215. “There was one glaring (to my mind) conclusion you failed to arrive at; that Howard sees truths that you do not see.” “The human mind sees only so far”

    Howard, you’re right. The psychological system I was talking about was constructed based on observation of people who were not trying to remember themselves and were not in a school for awakening, so maybe you don’t quite fit into the system. Also the researchers were presumably in the second state most of the time, which doesn’t speak well for how much they could understand. So yes, it may be possible that your truth wins the grand prize, because I am only coming from rational mind and lesser logic, which as we know is very limited in understanding Truth.

    I admit, it’s also quite possible that Influence C wanted Robert to be just the way he is, because they had a plan for keeping the School free of certain kinds of people. And since they control everything in this world, they probably also made me and this blog just the way they wanted, because it’s impossible that this would be happening against their wishes. Maybe all the attacks against the School and Robert that have been happening lately, have been provided for students to transform and become even more steadfast in their work, because they can now see clear examples of how they would be consumed by the lower self if they lost their work.

    May I ask you a question? Have you found in your work that you can know by yourself what Influence C wishes you to do (other than be present), without being told by Robert that it is so? Do you think it would be theoretically possible for anyone else in the world except Robert to understand what Influence C wishes? And if yes, how would you know that they are really in contact with Influence C, that they are not just pretending or imagining it?

    Thank you for your time.


  243. a former student #224

    “I usually use them as a mantra to block the mechanical part of the intellectual center. They are not only good at that but given enough repetitions I seem to begin to understand them at deeper levels.”

    I am glad you added this to your post as the practical and personal application of your study of the sonnets. What a great opportunity for a person with such a deep understanding of human nature as Shakespeare (whomever he was) to pass onto others psychological and spiritual insights! It feels to me like the sonnets and plays were an attempt to make these deeper understandings available to others across a wide range of social strata outside of the church’s (FOF’s…) sphere of influence. Books were scarce and expensive in Shakespeare’s time, were they not? So probably the sonnets had to be memorized (like the plays), repeated over and over again, and recited for many to appreciate, if that was their intent. So are prayers and mantras (and I dare say, the plebian sequence).

    I doubt the meaning of a particular sonnet can be grasped in just one listening…although our modern ear is not accustomed to their syntax…or was grasping their deeper meaning directed toward the student learning to recite them? Are they not a call to action…to ‘rise’ the occasion and ask the fancy of one’s eye (one’s higher centers) to dance, to love~ before it’s too late? (The average life expectancy wasn’t very long in those days either, forcing many to mature quickly…)

    Such is also the nature of poetry like Haiku….an exercise for the higher intellect and higher emotional centers to work in concert. What a lovely tool! You are in good company with the sonnets.


  244. HC: You would be better off filling your “grand canyon” with Be Be’s.

    We know that penis was de-coded by the Teacher as “Be” (long and short). – I saw the pictures and heard the interpretations.

    Now what is “grand canyon” symbolises? ;)

    HC, are you talking about an orgy here?


  245. I heard (first-hand) that Lin. Tu/Kap recently responded to a question posed by a current member that related to the rule to NOT fraternize with ex-members. Apparently she indicated that that rule no longer applied and that “it was a mistake”. Also, apparently, per LT no student will be asked to leave if they attend talks with other “teachers” & “gurus”.
    Perhaps current members reading this blog can confirm the accuracy of this report for themselves.
    Any changes in attititude that serve to break down the punitive & artificial divisions between people whose lives have encompassed the FOF is – in my opinion – a step toward a greater maturity AND a step away from cultish and destructive behaviors.


  246. 240 Also a step to keep money flowing, as there are many people “breaking the rule” through this blog and the social network which has quite a few present members.

    I see no magnanimity in this change, just a business decision. Enforcing would take a large chunk away from the FOF. It’s pretty obvious.


  247. Until they can develop a strategy to deal with it without a hit at the bank.


  248. BTW: Some talk of Ken Wilbur here. If anyone in OH would like to borrow/copy the full set of CDs (11) describing KW’s cosmology and teaching, let me know here. This material was useful to me when I first left the school. The least reason was that it helped to reveal – by contrast – la pauvrete of Robert’s teaching.

    In my experience, you can facilitate your own disentanglement from the FOF snare by exploring other ideas and visiting other ‘teachers’ out in the vast domain of “life”; this is true even though you may wish to avoid merely supplanting one system & teacher with another.

    The current form invokes the “repulsion from” that evokes the tension that is necessary to leave. The “attraction to” an array of new influences – in my observation – is often the precipitating factor in the capacity to finally leave the FOF.


  249. #207 Lust for Life
    re my post #199

    In 1981 there was an exposé in one of the large London newspapers about RB’s homosexual behavior with students and the Fellowship as a cult. There was a connection between the article and the highly influential parents of a London student named Anne R. This article came out shortly after the article in the S.F. Chronicle. It caused a wave of “oh mys” in the London center, where Girard and Barbara were directors.

    Linda T.R.K. visited London around that time and we went out to a pub together for a drink. I was telling her how horrible I thought the press was being and how absurd it was that ANYONE would accuse RB of deceiving us. She took pity on me and told me that everything in the article was TRUE. A chasm opened up from under my feet at that moment (wowie wooie, third state!) and the conflict between my experience with synchronicity, my friendships in the fof and the politics of the fof was born.

    Traveler’s post #237 pretty much sums up where I’m at currently. A force greater than our own created this world. That force appears to have intelligence far beyond the human mind. That’s about all we can know for sure. Who we are and how we live our lives is ultimately defined by our own conscience. An incredible Native American woman named Leslie Gray ( http://www.woodfish.org ) once told me that magic is magic, it can be either white or black depending on whose hands it’s in.

    Bless all the healers.

    Love,
    Shelley

    ps. Incredible no mention of Damanhur yet on the blog. Any thoughts anyone? http://www.damanhur.org
    This place trumps the fof on the art octave! Truly incredible and worth a click on your keypad.
    Is it also a cult? Looks like…smells like…


  250. To Traveler #204:

    Thank you so much for this practical and insightful information. It seems that even a little understanding of this system would eliminate a lot of the anger and frustration felt by those who have left when trying to reason with those who are choosing to stay. As you so correctly pointed out, “….it seems that it is not possible to talk someone into the next level, unless they are already on their way there.”

    _______________________________________________________________________________

    “Rationality is beyond the ceiling of most of the Fellowship today. The school is about believing, uncritically accepting revealed truths so that you may be saved by doing the one right thing that will bring you the desired immortality.”

    “That is also the reason why it doesn’t help if you tell Howard that Robert is a “deluded sociopath”. You have no authority in Howard’s eyes. He will measure your statement against what Robert says, and he will consider it true to the degree it agrees with Robert’s opinion”.

    I have a small example that illustrates the truth of the above two quotes from your post. About a year ago I was sitting with two very devoted students. One of them made the frequently heard comment that we are so lucky to be in the school because people in life are not interested in awakening. I very gently mentioned that there are, in fact, many people in the world now who are very interested in spiritual development and awakening. I pointed out that many in the school are unaware of this development and of all the wonderful resources that support spiritual growth because we refuse to acknowledge anything outside the Fellowship.

    The student commented, “Well, that is not what Robert tells us and I intend to align my thinking with Robert’s.” Then the heavy silence that comes when someone questions or casts any doubt on RB or FOF enveloped us and I knew it was pointless to say anything else.


  251. It’s an interesting study to see how The FOF governing body makes it’s decisions. Governing body, of course, with RB in the CEO’s chair.

    This realization first struck me back when the smoking exercise was first instituted. I was pretty close to the fire at the time and my “informed sources” said the idea came to fruition when RB was given an estimate of the amount of money spent by students each month on cigs, at the same time they were in a money crunch (which is pretty much all the time) and special donations were rising and coming more often.


  252. on June 24, 2007 at 6:37 pm You-me-us-they

    Brand new web site,
    possible steping back from “mistakes”,
    anti-virus program removed
    Huum…

    I wonder which colour would that be in “spiral dynamics” terms ?

    I am going to stay a little longer at the balcony,
    the view is great and I can breath the open air!

    Gratitude:

    PS: the Greater FOF site worth visiting and joining.
    My cocktail: The blog some mind training,
    the Greater FOF for the photos and kind personal messages!


  253. hC

    Robert may actually be a “deluded sociopath”(your words). It’s equally possible that Influence C in their infinite wisdom knew that if they created his role to appear that way it would keep the ranks of the school unencumbered with lesser logic.

    Yesri baba
    ” Oh , you mean the baby within the baby” or something like that in relation to “pain-body” but I didn’t understand so I didn’t relate it. Mean anything to you?

    A former student
    There are 1000’s of English Professors. There are many who earn their living with their supposed knowledge of Shakespeare

    I believe that in terms of the system Shakespeare was at least man #6. Man with objective consciousness. My analysis is meant to be for someone who is familiar with the system.

    To criticize the essay you need to either challenge the premise or the way the parts relate to the premise.

    I am actually grateful for the challange because it engages the emotional parts of centers. Both the Queen of hearts and Queen of Diamonds. Thus becoming a third force to articulate what seems self evident to me.

    So a post like this requires editing as I don’t want to be embarrassed at my poor language skills while developing an intellectual arguement.

    __________________________________

    All of this my loves, I ask any of you who have an inkling to dismiss or admit (worse) any brother or sisters faults: is this the way to lead a life, one filled with excuses and blame… I ask H.C., anyone defending, exclaiming the Fellowship of Friends to be sane ~ Ask yourself, all you true personality possessed loving souls, bound by the ‘ball and chain’ (your brain and spinal column)…

    Here is comes HC, and all of the Fellowship of Friends ~

    What would you do, consciously, if presented with the mechanical role of Robert Burton?

    This is it, what would you do if presented with the choice, to play out this role or become that which is not the role,

    now Howard Carter,

    wisearce this (?)

    _________________________

    Love to you all.

    P.S. Shakespeare was writing from the point of view of having an astral body, Juliet is it’s name, now, can we together go back to the drawing board and burn all the libraries of the world, only then, can we speak of Shakespeare.

    ________________________

    Love to you all


  254. I did check out theis site http://www.sufienneagram.com/overview.html
    it really only is an intro the main purpose is to sell books.

    and while surfing found this reference

    Dr. Stylianos Atteshlis (Στυλιανός Αττεσλής, known as Daskalos) (1912-1995) Daskalos was a Christian mystic and healer. For seventy years he had been teaching, trying to wake people out of their spiritual slumber. His teachings are at
    http://www.researchersoftruth.org/

    “Each one of you now, according to the Law of Cause and Effect, is in the place the Total Wisdom has placed you. You are not there by chance. You are obeying the Divine Plan placed in the circumstances, family, community and nation necessary to learn your next lessons. ”

    also

    http://www.thenazareneway.com/
    The Nazarene Way ~
    The Esoteric Teachings of Jesus and the Nazarene Essenes

    and a final site
    http://www.hwt-hrw.com/Ma'at.php
    for the study of Ancient Egyptian teachings on Divine Order and Truth

    Each of these has its own system of thought an intellectual framework.So what’s the point?
    The root of The Fellowship of Friends was the System. It is one expression of truth. This can be seen to account for what has been successful in the teaching. I might say in spite of Robert E. Burton.

    There are and have been many Systems.
    There may be one truth but there are many paths.
    In studying Christian Mysticism or Sufi teachings it is first neccessary to learn the language and try and understand the over all framwork. Some like Christian Mysticism have a complete cosmology others as with the original teachings of Buddha do not. It is further useful to study the culture and civilization in which the Teaching appears. In the Moslem world there are many tribal cultural attitudes now involved in the teaching , beliefs and practices of the followers. Just as in The currant beliefs of Buddism elements of the earlier Hindu pantheon have become incorporated.

    The study of a language and structure of ideas is not the same as accepting it as fact. So when I present the Esoteric interprettation of the Sonnets it is not as fact but from a specific framework. To argue or dicuss whether this is objective truth misses the point. If it is an objective truth did which of us would know it?

    What it means in the context of this discussion is to distinguish between the knowledge and being of the Fellowship of Friends and the knowledge and being in the system. Robert claims to be conscious and has offered interprettations of various B influence works for many years. A very real question in evaluating the value of the school is the quality of B influence created. The understanding of earlier works and the development of new works in fitting with the times.

    For me, The Police’s “Spirits in the Material world” is a more important work than anything I know of from the Fellowship. It may be flawed but it is one that speaks to many on a level they can understand. Just as Shakespeares play’s appealed to a broad spectrum of people.
    What if anything has The Fellowship of Friends done to spread the information. Certainly not the presentation of European Culture which is available widely. Is there anything new. Music? Writing? Poetry? Art? If not why?


  255. For You-me-us-they, you mentioned the new FoF website (#13/246). This is my take on it at a glance:

    The basic division that permeates the text – into good vs. evil, higher self vs. lower self, presence vs. imagination, sleep vs. awakening, epic struggles, is characteristic of stage 4/blue thinking. As Robert says, “At any moment you are either promoting presence, or you are dominated by the King of Clubs”. It is a mythical worldview of fighting demons, winning battles over the forces of evil, reaching the Promised Land. A worldview shared with President Bush, for example.

    Belief-based circular reasoning is relied on, e.g. “A real spiritual school of awakening must be rare, for a person to relate rightly to the idea of awakening, he or she must consider it a rare phenomenon. Only in this way can he or she value awakening properly and make the necessary efforts to attain it. So rather than say that all other groups are wrong, we would say that, out of the vast number of groups available in our time, those that are real must be few in number.”

    Blue: employing argument to authority. Translation of the above: “There are many spiritual groups. A real school must be rare. You must think that a real school is rare because that is correct thinking about awakening.” It simply states a belief, and if you are poised to rely on truth being commensurate with the degree of authority with which it is pronounced, you are “school material”. And that’s good, because they will attract exactly the right kind of people. “Schools are for people who need them and who know they need them.”


  256. Eve’s Chat with God – The Real Truth

    “Lord, I have a problem.”

    “What’s the problem, Eve?”

    “I know that you created me and provided this beautiful garden and all of these wonderful animals, as well as that hilarious comedic snake, but I’m just not happy.”

    “And why is that Eve?”

    “Lord, I am lonely, and I’m sick to death of apples.”

    “Well, Eve, in that case, I have a solution. I shall create a man for you.”

    “Man? What is that Lord?”

    “A flawed creature, with many bad traits. He’ll lie, cheat and be vain; all in all, he’ll give you a hard time. But he’ll be bigger, faster and will like to hunt and kill things. I’ll create him in such a way that he will satisfy your physical needs. He will be witless and will revel in childish things like fighting and kicking a ball about. He won’t be as smart as you, so he will also need your advice to think properly.”

    “Sounds great,” says Eve, with ironically raised eyebrows, “but what’s the catch Lord?”

    “Well,…..you can have him on one condition.”

    “And what’s that Lord? ”

    “As I said, he’ll be proud, arrogant and self-admiring …. so you’ll have to let him believe that I made him first. And it will have to be our little secret . you know, woman to woman. _._,___


  257. Traveler 248

    The basic division that permeates the text – into good vs. evil, higher self vs. lower self, presence vs. imagination, sleep vs. awakening, epic struggles, is characteristic of stage 4/blue thinking.

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

    “…stage 4/blue thinking.”

    You’re a lunatic.


  258. Former Student

    When I read your posts, I keep thinking ‘you should join’.

    I don’t mean this sarcasticly.

    There is something true in the fellowship for each generation.
    I think you migtht even enjoy the current one.


  259. on June 24, 2007 at 10:33 pm Lust for Life

    Graduates #250
    Traveler is relating different attitudes and ways of thinking to the ‘spiral dynamics’ theory he outlines in his post #204. Seems to make sense on one level, about as much sense as many other theoretical models, and a lot more sense that the interpretation of vehicle licence plates.

    Reminds me of a time I was in a park with a student, it was a lovely sunny day and a bride and groom had come into the park to have their wedding photos taken. The student asked me “what do you think that means?”, which seemed very bizarre, but I also found myself on the lookout for ‘messages from above’ from time to time. That seems to me to be more lunatic behaviour, but then we did enjoy referring to Alice in Wonderland! Little did we know what sort of mad-house we had made for ourselves!


  260. #234 Howard Carter

    Good one!


  261. Thanks Joel for responding. All accounts are settled; next time we meet it is a hug.

    It is interesting how difficult it is to give people something they asked for or say they needed, a form of external consideration.

    Traveler about Howard: (204)
    How can you have a dialog with someone who will not address the subject but will keep changing the subject to keep in control (dominance)?

    Howard Carter:
    Thank you for contributing to the blog.

    Bass Ackwards:
    What does the name mean?
    On third line of work how do you serve the planet?

    Ames: How do you serve the community?

    thank you Sheik


  262. #234 Howard Carter

    I filled up my Grand Canyon with one big Be and that Be is Me (and also Thee) tee-hee.


  263. When I was in the eighth grade I was handed a fourth grade math work book. I was passed along the second year of eighth grade and the ninth. In the spring of the tenth grade at the legal age of sixteen I quit.

    Ten years later I found myself admitted to a major university.
    My freshman year I failed everything and made the Dean’s probation list.

    How hard was it? My freshman english professor said, “I want everybody to write a 500 word theme, so that I can determine where you are”. My first thought? “What’s a 500 word theme”?. I figured it out by other students questions. Algebra?
    Never knew it existed. Chemistry? Ditto. Same for the reminder of my first 21 hours.

    Three years later I graduated. What I really want to say is about Shakespeare. I took Shakespeare. The professor had an old 78LP record with English speakers reading. When not listening to the record the professor would become dramatic and recite everything with vigor.

    And, I? I was transported into another world. Four years later I read Collin’s, “Theory of Celestial Influence” and could hardly put the book down.

    Anyway, that’s my take on Shakespeare.


  264. #247 Unoanimo

    You asked me a specific question. In response I replied with something Ken Wilber had said that I didn’t get but seemed perhaps related to what you asked me. That’s all.


  265. on June 25, 2007 at 12:07 am Comic Relief

    Hey, Guys (154, 157, 159, 179, 194) ,

    Why can’t I get past the home page of beingpresent.org?
    When I click ENTER it just repeats the same page. Do you think they know I am a former member?

    At first I thought it was because I have my browser set to prompt me to allow cookies, but it doesn’t even ask me.

    Any suggestions?

    This is serious!

    I want to be in on the latest propaganda.


  266. This is not important but the number of the posts keep shifting: the Sheik is really aiming at Inner Confusion.

    Relevant observation, unnecessary comment. Bitter bitter bitter.

    I can’t do anything about the changing numbers, there will be comments that will need moderating – more than 2 links or a new persona (change in name or e-mail address) will force your comment to be moderated and when it is, the comment will appear where it would have gone were it not moderated.

    There are about 8 comments that I moderated today, I haven’t had access to the internet for the past 2 days. Busy as always. Love you guys.


  267. To Graduates #250:

    “…stage 4/blue thinking.”

    You’re a lunatic.
    ——————————————————–

    I don’t understand why you would make such a comment. You must not have read Travelers post #204. This may be the first information on the blog to actually explain why those who stay see no contradiction in their devotion to a very sick person. It also makes it clear that fighting, name calling, etc. will achieve nothing other than a very immediate but short lived relief from one’s own frustration.


  268. ShellyM #213

    BTW, a big THANK YOU for bringing relativity to what it’s like to actually have a gun to your head…

    (for all those who toss around that cliche around so flippantly!)

    I trust it remains a source of energy for your fine work as a method actress.


  269. on June 25, 2007 at 1:21 am Veronicapoe

    Vena/267:

    Am J Psychiatry 1980; 137:1569-1573
    Copyright © 1980 by American Psychiatric Association

    Tenacity of attachment to a cult leader: a psychiatric perspective
    A Deutsch

    This follow-up study describes a cult whose leader became cruel and increasingly bizarre. Six of 14 members who were investigated at the time of the cult’s formation remained loyal to the leader until the dissolution of the group almost four years later. The author describes the attitudes of these and other devotees who submitted to the irrational guru. The leader’s radical teachings, his purported closeness to God, and his embodiment of a countercultural ideal of freedom appeared to be factors that bolstered his overwhelming authority in his followers’ lives. The devotees used denial, rationalization, and other defensive operations to maintain the fantasy that the leader was acting for their benefit.


  270. 269 Great post, thank you.

    This post should be re-posted after every post by HC, LOL ,Siddiq, with malice toward none, and the rest of the loyal believers and enablers.


  271. Traveler #204:

    Thank you for posting the synopsis of Ken Wilbur’s “levels” work. You’ve done a great service by summarizing this somewhat difficult material–IMHO Wilbur is brilliant, and rewards the patient reader with many valuable insights. I hope your summary will inspire others to “dwelve” deeper into his stuff.


  272. To Harpie

    245. ‘I heard (first-hand) that Lin. Tu/Kap recently responded to a question posed by a current member that related to the rule to NOT fraternize with ex-members. Apparently she indicated that that rule no longer applied and that “it was a mistake”. Also, apparently, per LT no student will be asked to leave if they attend talks with other “teachers” & “gurus”.

    Harpie, it’s not clear, did you hear Linda say that? That would be first-hand. Sounds like you heard it from someone else. Linda, could you clarify this information as soon as possible?

    Why would such a huge policy change come is such a casual fashion?

    This link will take you to the original Articles of Incorporation for the FOF:
    http://www.archive.org/details/TheEsotericHistoryArchive_13

    Does anyone have a current or previous copy of the By-laws as described in Paragraph VI? I think it would be very helpful to all if we, as members, knew what our rights and privileges are.
    Does anyone know the names of the current Board of Directors?

    Another link for your consideration, perhaps we could order a copy and post it:
    http://www.alacrastore.com/storecontent/dnb2/76114669

    SAM.1


  273. on June 25, 2007 at 3:37 am Howard Carter

    To Unoanimo – 253

    “Here is comes HC, and all of the Fellowship of Friends ~

    What would you do, consciously, if presented with the mechanical role of Robert Burton?

    This is it, what would you do if presented with the choice, to play out this role or become that which is not the role,

    now Howard Carter,

    wisearce this (?)”

    I might give it a try if I could understand it.


  274. The Fellowship had moved to Cyberspace.
    Will teaching payment follow??


  275. Howard Carter #241

    “Obedience is a higher law; when was the last time you saw a planet misbehave?”

    Ever hear of Mercury going retrograde? It has all this week, in fact. Observable from your back porch…

    …if you really care to see with your own eyes.


  276. “…devotees used denial, rationalization, and other defensive operations to maintain the fantasy..”

    So do former devotees…nothing new under the sun


  277. WhaleRider 273 (quoting):

    Howard Carter #241

    “Obedience is a higher law; when was the last time you saw a planet misbehave?”

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

    Obedience is often a far more destructive form of behavior than insurrection.


  278. on June 25, 2007 at 5:05 am Howard Carter

    To Life person – 233

    Howard (215) you say you’re willing to assume Traveler’s “truth” might “outpeg” yours, and ask if it is just possible that your “truth” is the highest among those being discussed. Well, anyone reading the blog can see you are not really willing to make any such assumption, you are simply making a rhetorical point, which in this particular case is another word for lie. And that’s the point. You are willing to lie to yourself and to the other bloggers, in this case about your purported open-mindedness, in order to defend your own world view”

    Post 233 is more reasonable than most I’ve encountered in this group. Perhaps I was leading him on a little, I’ll have to be accountable for that.

    On the other hand I see some of the typical ex-FoF evasion of my main point in your words. All I’m asking is this: Do ex students, after all is said and done, ever consider the possibility that the FoF is what it claims to be, in spite of the much documented appearances to the contrary?

    Here’s what I see as the biggest assumption you make, and it’s the most commom assumption I have encountered here:

    You equate leaving with a right of passage, a graduation of sorts, that eventually happens to all reasonalbe members who join. You further assume that anyone who stays has simply not gotten to the point that you got to in your leaving; so the ones who stay are the laggards, or flawed in some sense, otherwise they also would leave.

    This is an assumption on your part, as real as it might appear to you. This is certainly not my reality and while you are free to accept or reject my stated reality, in truth, you do not know my actual reality, you only assume you do. I do not assume to know your reality.

    You believe that at some point in time all good people like yourself leave. This is one of many possibilities, not the only possibility. And this was my point to Traveler, and is my point to you, Ames, Laura or anyone I’ve addressed lately.

    I may not be the most appropriate one to claim it, but nevertheless I will suggest to an open mind (if there is any reading this), that there is no “evidence” (this can also be debated endlessly) to suggest that you are more correct in your assumptions than I am. The FoF continues on in its 38th year, as real and vibrant to many of its members as it ever was.

    We all know its a tug of war, (of words only) but when I look down I don’t see my knees any more muddied than your’s.

    How’s the rock song go? – “Its only you and me and we just disagree”


  279. on June 25, 2007 at 5:15 am Howard Carter

    To WhaleRider – 273

    “Howard Carter #241

    “Obedience is a higher law; when was the last time you saw a planet misbehave?”

    Ever hear of Mercury going retrograde? It has all this week, in fact. Observable from your back porch…

    …if you really care to see with your own eyes.”

    No one is perfect; it does stay in its orbit however.


  280. Howard Carter #276

    “Do ex students, after all is said and done, ever consider the possibility that the FoF is what it claims to be, in spite of the much documented appearances to the contrary?”

    Would the explorer Columbus still have considered the Earth flat even if his queen bade him to do so, once he verfied that his ship didn’t fall off the edge?


  281. Howard Carter 276

    We all know its a tug of war, (of words only) but when I look down I don’t see my knees any more muddied than your’s.

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

    Your choice of wording is predictably going to work against your overall argument.


  282. Post 276.Howard Carter

    I suggest you go to the office and see if you can find the average lenth of years in the FOF for members. It used to be around 12 years when Anthony W. was compiling the statistics.Not sure what it is currently but I think you will find by doing some simple arithmetic that obviously the great majority of members leave eventually.This is not an assumption but a mathematical fact. Not many people here dispute that at a certain stage of ones stay the FOF seems ‘real and vibrant’. Then you ‘wake up’
    Of course you can point to the ‘Few’ who have been in long term. I will refrain from naming them here but we all know who they are. Some of them have been responsible for the more bizarre postings on this blog.


  283. Howard,

    We’re really not getting anwhere with this. Is there someone else there we can talk to?

    (Just kidding…kind of. You’re a great sport.)

    Tim


  284. Behave Tim.


  285. #216 My2Bits
    Thanks for your kind thoughts. I don’t know much about the astral body but I can tell you that 216 is the Hebrew letter name of God. That’s kinda interesting.

    I’m highly influenced by the work of a physicist named Basarab Nicolescu. Here’s the Amazon link to his book Manifesto of Transdisciplinarity which I highly recommend. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/079145262X/ref=pd_bxgy_text_b/103-3461768-7059844?ie=UTF8
    It will answer your question far better than I.

    I met Basarab at a symposium he organized through UNESCO. They met in Venice for three days in 1986. Rupert Sheldrake was amongst the participants. (Also worth reading!) So was David Suzuki, whose work was featured in Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth.
    In fact, about five scientists from the symposium came to my house for dinner during this event and I assure you, Sheila Grunwald I am NOT! But bless her heart, I prepared her chicken curry recipe and made a great impression on all.

    Anyway- this symposium -(to which I WAS invited and appreciated I might add!) was called Symposium on Science and the Boundaries of Knowledge: the Prologue of Our Cultural Past http://unesdoc.unesco.org/ulis/cgi-bin/ulis.pl?database=ged&lin=1&gp=0&look=new&sc1=1&sc2=1&ref=http://www.google.com/search?hl=en%26client=firefox-a%26rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official%26hs=1o1%26sa=X%26oi=spell%26resnum=0%26ct=result%26cd=1%26q=nicolescu%2Bconference%2Bvenice%2B1985%26spell=1&nl=1&req=4&au=Nicolescu,%20Basarab
    Basarab and I fell in love on the spot. But that’s another story.
    Thomas E. didn’t notice. I divorced him within the year.

    Basarab was my first real friend outside of the fof. He was friends with Michael DeSalzman (Gurdjieff’s biological son). I declined an invite to meet him at the time because it seemed like a ‘false personality’ thing to do. I don’t regret not meeting DeSalzman. I had (and keep having) so many synchronicities (C-influence shocks) I reasoned that if I pursued esoteric rock stars instead of the moment then I’d really be screwed. Which is probably the truth.

    But back to more weighty matters… the Astral Body. I have had physical healings from a number of incredible practitioners who do things that make no sense to the rational mind. Things like Kinesology and Jin Chin. Is the astral body involved? I don’t know. The only other body that I have produced that I’m sure of is that of my daughter.

    My performances of Talking with Angels surely produce something but I wouldn’t be so bold as to label it. I’ve never really channeled anything and I wouldn’t say angels have spoken to me either. I encountered the 4th Way through my passion as an actress. I identify more as an artist than as a 4th Way student so I tend to interpret supernatural things from an artistic pov. The story I tell in Talking with Angels is about people actually grappling with questions like yours… Here’s a passage from Talking with Angels:Budaliget 1943 that I hope you will like:
    —————-
    Page 247
    THE HUMAN IS THE BODY OF HEAVEN AND
    GREATER THAN ALL HEAVENLY BODIES
    THE HUMAN IS NOT A PART:
    THE HUMAN IS THE WHOLE.

    You hear a cry of pain or anguish.
    How do you respond?
    Do you let it bring you down?

    How distant is a small cell in the tip of the toe
    From a cell in the head! How distant!
    Bit if there is a pain anywhere in the body,
    Both cells feel it.
    By what means? Through the spirit.
    All heavenly bodies are merely cells.
    The Human is the spirit.
    The spirit is infinitely great and infinitely small.
    When a cell dies, a new force is born,
    An unknown, new, never-dreamed-of force.
    This is not ominous

    A NEW FORCE ONLY SWEEPS AWAY
    WHAT IS UNSUITED FOR LIFE.

    Thus it is no loss.
    Be strengthened by it!
    Did you believe I was not with you?
    The deceiver was lurking, but I watched over you.

    The task of evil is to tempt.
    But soon you will be beyond all temptation.
    Extraordinary force demands extraordinary resistance.

    WHAT IS INCAPABLE OF LIVING IN THE NEW
    CANNOT RESIST.
    WHAT IS CAPABLE OF LIVING IN THE NEW
    TRANSFORMS: JUST THERE,
    WHERE IT IS NECESSARY.

    Thus, from death comes life and
    From evil: good.
    What casts others down enlivens you.

    The human who perceives a cry of anguish from the
    Universe is called to bring forth its sweetness.
    The one who fails to do so
    Becomes the spoiler of the universe.
    A bruised apple either becomes sweeter
    Than all the others or it rots.

    So there’s my two bits My2Bits.

    I hope it filled your spirit and addressed your question. Sorry I can’t place you re: Venice. Some years I had over 200 house guests and it’s all a blur to me now. Feel free to contact me on the Greater Fellowship site.

    Much love to you,
    Shelley

    Ps- here’s the youtube promo of ‘Angels’ if you want a visual http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EgaDLP6EplE


  286. “This is not important but the number of the posts keep shifting: the Sheik is really aiming at Inner Confusion.

    Relevant observation, unnecessary comment. Bitter bitter bitter.”

    Sheik don’t shake please, I was just honoring the name that you choose to represent your status. May be no person is aiming at it but inner confusion is around here on many levels – like an inner confused russian doll.
    Nothing bitter outside of yours: just FUN out here.


  287. on June 25, 2007 at 8:13 am Across the River

    Response to Howard Carter’s post of 25 Jun 5:05:

    I think the song you quoted to end your post is the one thing on which we can agree – well found.

    Speaking for myself and at least some others who have left Robert, there comes a point in our relationship to the Fellowship where it doesn’t matter if we’re wrong and leaving a “real school” because we have understood that likely there is no way to have an answer to that question.

    At that particular crossroad, it’s only what we know that can instruct us. When looking at Robert without the fog of devotion, we believe we have seen him in a more objective way. One can’t help but be impressed by the world at Isis that he has orchestrated, but there we differ in the meaning of that manifestation.

    Those of us who have said “no” can see the parallel dynamics to other civilization-building organizations lead by leaders that at the core operated in the same way as Robert, that is to be little kings-of-the-world, protecting their own interests at all cost.

    Efforts continue through these posts to open this perception of Robert and his kingdom to those who can receive it.

    Any of us can only “see what we see, and know what we know”. and from this we must humbly must make our best choices.

    Is Robert a conscious teacher of a real school? Neither you or I can be sure, but I say no and “life” is good!

    I know who you are HC and quite sure you intend to provoke!

    Have you ever had any doubts about Robert?


  288. 276.How hard Carter.
    279.Graduates, is right.
    The reason your knees dont appear muddier than the rest of us is that you’re up to your neck in shit, therefore you cant tell.
    By the way, you can take that from either end, ie foot first or head first.
    your real name isnt Michael by any chance.
    Cycle ops.


  289. on June 25, 2007 at 2:59 pm wake up little suzy wake up

    Just went on the Greater Fellowship site. Something that has become more obvious to me than ever is how diverse and creative group we are. This is not something typically experienced in the Fellowship unless you spend some time with each person getting to know them, and even that is difficult, since uniqueness of character is not the main focus. It would be too empowering.

    It was fun to connect with each other with a similar language, but I think might have made some of us lazy in asking deeper questions keeping ourselves always busy making the 4th way system more and more complex as we busied ourselves with conjugating different parts of centers, body types and the like.

    If some of you have not joined the Greater Fellowship yet maybe you should take a look at it.


  290. CLARIFICATION
    SAM.1 and all,
    Apologies for the lack of clarity in my earlier post.
    My post should have read that I heard first hand from a student who posed a question to Linda T/K, that Linda’s response indicated that the FOF would not ask people to leave for mixing with ex-students nor visiting other teachers/gurus. Apparently Linda added that “this was a mistake”.
    The does represent such a significant change in policy for the FOF, that I suggest you personally verify this information. (The student that posed the question is a careful & reliable source of information in my opinion.)

    I have already passed on this information to a number ofmy current student friends who were not aware of any change in attitude at that level in the FOF.


  291. Re: #285 Shelley M.

    Thank you, Shelley, for your warm, emotional reply. It was great to make this brief but profound contact, and I’m sure that fellow bloggers also enjoyed another of your poetic bursts of refreshingly honest expression.

    Love, My2bits


  292. Shelley
    wrote
    ps. Incredible no mention of Damanhur yet on the blog. Any thoughts anyone?
    http://www.damanhur.org

    It made me very sad. In response to another question this is what I would have tried to do If I had the choice to play Robert’s role. Something open, sharing, that uses a real not imitated Art form. Is it perfect, I doubt it. Will it leave a legacy better than the self centered selfishness of the Fellowship of Friends ,very likely. Robert had manages to spend 100 million dollars building a property worth maybe what 5?

    Robert Burton has so thoroughly corrupted the Fellowship of Friends that many members cannot see the corruption or imagine anything different. He is an excellent manipulator and propagandist. I would say he missed his true calling as a con man but he didn’t he succeeded at it and also insulated himself from prosecution. I do not envy him such a damming Karmic Burden.

    As to Mervyn Brady the background more or less told me what I had seen in the brief look. Their web site is actually made of images from old journals.

    unoanimo
    Maybe its time to get real. Try and minimize the clever verbiage it is a shell it makes a mockery of any claim of honesty. No use criticizing the Fellowship when you can’t be honest about yourself.
    You challenge Fellowship members. I challenge you. No more word games Be honest . I try and read your post’s usually they make my eyes hurt and when I am done there is little to show except “my goodness how clever”.
    You write
    “P.S. Shakespeare was writing from the point of view of having an astral body, Juliet is it’s name, now, can we together go back to the drawing board and burn all the libraries of the world, only then, can we speak of Shakespeare.”
    I told you I find your flippancy personally insulting. So if you are the caring sensitive insightful person you claim, why not let it go? Why the need for the last word? One last gratuitous insult? Why the need for the dramatic gesture “burn all the libraries of the world only then speak of Shakespeare” sounds great, dramatic but like a majority of your post’s “full of sound and fury signifying nothing”.
    Consider this from Sonnet 127
    which refers to those who imitate Art or in your case speak generally while avoiding the real and personal.
    “At such who, not born fair, no beauty lack,
    Slandering creation with a false esteem:
    Yet so they mourn, becoming of their woe,
    That every tongue says beauty should look so. ”
    I often find valuable often beautiful nuggets buried in your post’s but often they go on and on and it is so hard to read through that by the time I am done I have a headache, my eye’s are tearing up and my vision is blurry so I have to ask myself if it is worth it. If when I’m done there is just cleverness.
    on 25 Jun 2007 at 12:22 am267 Vena writes
    “It also makes it clear that fighting, name calling, etc. will achieve nothing other than a very immediate but short lived relief from one’s own frustration.”
    So, its better than kicking the cat. Perhaps Fighting, name calling and a good tantrum once in a while are good for you. Especially if you just don’t like something for no reason at all. Where did you hear otherwise?


  293. on June 25, 2007 at 5:27 pm Howard Carter

    To Graduates – 275

    “Obedience is often a far more destructive form of behavior than insurrection.”

    This is also true; higher laws descend into lower laws. World 96 has 48 of its own distortions plus the 48 laws from World 48. World 48 has 24 of its own expressions plus the 24 carried down from World 24, and so on.

    Any higher law can be appropriated by a lower world at any time. Any virture such as obedience can be misapplied to a wrong cause at any time.

    Insurrection (Opposition) also begins as a higher law and finds forms of expression in lower worlds. It too can be misapplied.


  294. Howard Carter #293

    “Any virture such as obedience..”

    From Wikipedia:

    According to its etymology the word virtue (Latin virtus) signifies manliness or courage. Taken in its widest sense virtue means the excellence of perfection of a thing, just as vice, its contrary, denotes a defect or absence of perfection due to a thing. In its strictest meaning, however, as used by moral philosophers and theologians, virtue is an operative habit essentially good, as distinguished from vice, an operative habit essentially evil. The four cardinal (hinge) virtues are Justice, Courage, Wisdom, and Moderation. These were enumerated by the Greek philosophers. The three supernatural virtues of Faith, Hope and (unselfish) Love are part of the Christian tradition. Both the natural and supernatural virtues depend on a person’s understanding that truth can be discovered.

    Hmmm….Justice, Courage, Wisdom, Moderation. Obedience doesn’t seem to be on the list, Howard.


  295. IM sorry to lower the tone after such profound discussion as the above ! but somethng just came to mind about robert burton, one day saying that he had sores on his lips, and when he thought about how he got them he said at the time that it came from kissing so many students. I of course took it to mean kissing their foreheads, how wrong could I have been.
    Cy.


  296. on June 25, 2007 at 6:04 pm Lust for Life

    Shelley # 249
    Thanks for your response, filling me in on the early ‘80’s in the London Centre. At about that time an old time student told me about Robert’s sexual activities and completely baffled me as it had happened to him, and he accepted it. Although he was unable to answer whether he thought it was right action or not for a supposedly conscious being, he appeared uncomfortable and rather sad about the whole subject, and made the comment that Robert was always ‘gentle’ with him, as though that was some kind of an explanation. I guess he had swallowed the whole ‘angel in a man’s body’ line, and I did too, as it was a while after that before I left. Something in us wanted to believe that it was really serving C influence, and Robert knew best. Very interesting to see how easy it is to sublimate oneself to another ‘authoritative’ figure. But that was how the hierarchy of the FoF worked; newer students bowed down to older students and older students to Robert.

    A Former Student # 254
    I would agree there are many systems and one ultimate truth, but would challenge the idea of there being paths. What has your ‘path’ been? What are the ‘paths’ that all these different systems supposedly create that lead to the truth? Do this exercise, follow this rule, deny this thought or feeling or desire, cultivate that thought or feeling or desire or state? NO! Any system or path is another illusion that we are ‘evolving’ by degrees, when it is really lulling us to sleep, dreaming that we are awake. Belonging to a group or following a system prevents us finding out for ourselves what the truth is because we can only come to it by knowing and relying on ourselves, learning the lessons of our own experiences, and understanding ourselves, and our relationship with the world around us. Words are just words, theories just theories and both tend to weave a web of thought that we get caught up in instead of relying on our inner intelligence and conscience which is pretty much word-less.

    Howard Carter # 278
    You posed the question:
    “Do ex students, after all is said and done, ever consider the possibility that the FoF is what it claims to be, in spite of the much documented appearances to the contrary?”

    Have you ever had someone play a magic trick on you, say, picking a card you have chosen from a pack, apparently at random, to find they picked the one you identified. The response tends to be, ‘wow, that’s really clever, how did you do that?’ Sometimes the magician will show how the trick is done, and you watch them play it on other, unenlightened people, who have the same reaction as you did, until, perhaps, they are shown the technique. Once you are shown, you cannot return to the state of wonderment, bewilderment and fascination, because you KNOW the truth about the card trick.

    So, no, I don’t ever consider the possibility that I made a mistake and the FoF is what it claims to be.

    Watch any Darren Brown clip from youtube, and imagine what power he could have if he posed as a conscious being. Luckily he is quite up-front about his methods, and does not try to make it into a theory or system to sublimate others.

    I admire your clear headedness in the onslaught of a myriad of assaults and trust you, and the rest of us will each ‘work it out for ourselves’.

    Love and Lust


  297. on June 25, 2007 at 6:52 pm Kid Shelleen

    Howard Carter says:

    “This is also true; higher laws descend into lower laws. World 96 has 48 of its own distortions plus the 48 laws from World 48. World 48 has 24 of its own expressions plus the 24 carried down from World 24, and so on.

    Any higher law can be appropriated by a lower world at any time. Any virture such as obedience can be misapplied to a wrong cause at any time.

    Insurrection (Opposition) also begins as a higher law and finds forms of expression in lower worlds. It too can be misapplied.”

    This just in from the Fifth Dimension:

    “When the Moon is in the Seventh House and Jupiter aligns with Mars. Then Peace will guide our Planet and Love will steer the Stars.”

    And I mean that most sincerely. What you have written here makes exactly the same amount of sense. Care to list these so-called laws? And don’t start with birds gotta fly/fish gotta swim, as that great conscious being Ira Gershwin already listed those.

    Isn’t the concept of obedience as a virtue really feminine dominance?


  298. on June 25, 2007 at 8:18 pm for the Best_1

    Dear friends,

    Bravo to all those who make this U Turn possible in the history of the school.

    Seeing so many friends coming back to the surface from years and years of absence is revelatory of how deep were their connections to the school, to their friends, and to their aim.

    It also shows that many had left without the right to answer, and had been frustrated of that until now: as for a prisoner, it is not enough to be free, you have to be rehabilitated and recognized by the society, even when you know that you are not guilty and you have done no wrong.

    I want to thank everyone here who had the honesty to tell his personal story.

    From our ex-teacher:
    “Courage, not fear, has a future.”

    Aline


  299. Hello ~ 264 Yesri baba

    You wrote ~

    #247 Unoanimo

    You asked me a specific question. In response I replied with something Ken Wilber had said that I didn’t get but seemed perhaps related to what you asked me. That’s all.
    ______________________

    Yes, I apologize for that one my friend, your post got snagged in my highlight, drag and paste flurry.

    So, to button that situation up… You stated that Ken Wilber said, “Child within the child.”

    It means something, for sure, though not sure what it means to he who said it; so it would be unfair to take it further, till I know what he means by it.

    Sounds similar to what I wrote a month or so ago concerning the pain body as being ‘the machine within the machine’… Ken’s version is a bit softer sounding and could imply a wide array of extremes, conclusions and directions…let me know if you find a further explanation of it.

    Thank you for your patience.

    ___________________________________

    Hello ~ 272 SAM.1

    You wrote ~

    “To Harpie

    245. ‘I heard (first-hand) that Lin. Tu/Kap recently responded to a question posed by a current member that related to the rule to NOT fraternize with ex-members. Apparently she indicated that that rule no longer applied and that “it was a mistake”. Also, apparently, per LT no student will be asked to leave if they attend talks with other “teachers” & “gurus”.

    Harpie, it’s not clear, did you hear Linda say that? That would be first-hand. Sounds like you heard it from someone else. Linda, could you clarify this information as soon as possible?”
    ________________________________

    It seems, that due to ‘money problems’, Robert Burton has changed his ‘grip’ a bit on current students, their inclinations to socialize with ex-students and the like…
    ________________________________

    Hello ~ 275 WhaleRider

    You wrote ~

    Howard Carter #241

    “Obedience is a higher law; when was the last time you saw a planet misbehave?”

    Ever hear of Mercury going retrograde? It has all this week, in fact. Observable from your back porch…

    …if you really care to see with your own eyes.
    ________________________________

    Wow; that explains a few things! Thanks for the tip Whalerider, I knew something was going down, up there.
    ________________________________

    Hello ~ 276 Siddiq

    You wrote ~

    “…devotees used denial, rationalization, and other defensive operations to maintain the fantasy..”

    So do former devotees…nothing new under the sun”
    _________________________

    For sure, they do, my friend; I just hope that you’re not ‘rationalizing’ by bring those two ‘same triads’ (though very different ‘aims’) together to ‘seem like’ they’re the same psychological effect, gain and outcome…

    There is conscious ‘defense’ and mechanical ‘first response, inner considering’ defense: one knows what it is seeing is an objective phenomenon manifesting between the soul and the mental as an ‘I’ whose simply ‘caught up’ in the flow of input and output, yet the ‘in-looker’ loves the person all the same; the other simply imitates the stimulus and becomes its opposite or partner: you choose.

    For me, its not so much what former students and current students ‘do’ with information ‘their heads’; its what the information does with them…

    Ball & Chain = Head and Spinal Column; ending and attached to your Sex Center.

    _______________________________

    Hello ~ Shelley M,

    You wrote ~

    “the Astral Body. I have had physical healings from a number of incredible practitioners who do things that make no sense to the rational mind. Things like Kinesology and Jin Chin. Is the astral body involved?

    The human who perceives a cry of anguish from the
    Universe is called to bring forth its sweetness.
    The one who fails to do so
    Becomes the spoiler of the universe.
    A bruised apple either becomes sweeter
    Than all the others or it rots.”
    ________________________________

    Is it involved, indirectly; for me, there are many healers that can focus a ‘certain energy’, also have trained themselves to instinctively intuit certain responses, facial features, nervous reactions (profilers are at the top of the King of Club food chain, second to certain kinds of hypnotists and infra sex gurus).

    This ‘certain energy’ in within the scope of the astral body, though is not it, itself… Sorta like this,

    You can grow cancer cells in a dish, feed them daily fresh meat and blood; in the dish they are just a phenomenon, not ‘cancerous’ for they are in no context to anything but themselves and the meat, yet, the meat and blood is being given, ‘a different triad’ than usual (or is it? ~ amterial for another book).
    Once the cells are introduced to the body, they become ‘cancerous’, dangerous, etc. So, all the King of Clubs, finer energy work is like that, ‘it’ uses that ‘certain energy’ yet it’s not the astral body using it…

    To me, Love, Intent, Being as you are in the one and only moment ‘as much’ as you have gathered, so far, is the stuff we’re really made of, so to speak… It takes energy ‘to be’, to go deeper, to go beyond one’s current level of being, toleration and desire to simply ‘blow up’ so to tear off one’s legs and no longer be able to go further… There are some bizarre force working down here to keep us ‘static’.

    BTW… You mentioned my editing something for you, can you send a sample; curious as to the material you’re speaking of. (?)

    BTW #2… the fruit also turns to ‘fermentation’ often getting the monkeys drunk.
    ________________________________

    Hello Bruce ~

    Post 256

    Nice, thank you.
    _________________________________

    Hello Former student ~

    Every once in awhile I wonder if I really need my brain or if it’s the other way around; sometimes its sorta like babysitting some alien jelly fish life form… Perhaps our ‘machines’ (and other’s) are our ‘crosses to bear’.

    I appreciate your honesty and your concern; though somehow based on ‘the sense I got’ reading your post I cannot help but feel that you’re complaining, which to me is not someplace I can afford to go these days. Again, I think it was you who I said this to before, (similarly to what students cannot ‘do’ concerning the movement from thinking and being in the fellowship of Friends’) that ~

    if you do not wish to read my posts, then just scroll down; I would not have any true friends if my concerns, tasks,expectations and labors of self was expected of them, projected upon them… I do not wish to change or ask anyone to consider me while they are speaking (or writing)… Sure, the ‘photograph’ may well be there, yet, to me its a very subjective one; some call ‘poetry’, ‘obscurity’, others ‘blinding light’, ‘light by which crime is eradicated’: I could photograph someone for having a head, yet, where does this lead?

    For me, perhaps your requests of me are requests of yourself that you have yet to reconcile deeply enough so to trust that others are doing the same and getting similar results (?)

    Thank you again for your ‘peripheral’ reading, I like that,
    most of all, the faults we perceive in others can define that Fault Finder within, who we wish to jump inside, like Neo did with The Agent. Refinement, yes, I see and can do it when its what I am ‘dancing’…

    I like to have fun in here, I mean ‘real fun’, what you call cleverness may actually be a place where you’ve decided to stop dancing, judge, label, move back from and be more of what contradicts your nature; yet, is this the deepest we can go, or is it, that contradictions are meant to be our portals to loving greater, deeper, without prerequisites and conceptual cages for our spontaneous beauty (?)

    ___________________________________

    Love to you all.


  300. #293 Howard Carter

    Great! Now apply that criteria to all the ideas of the system (including RB’s variations) including higher/lower ‘worlds’ and ‘laws’. Make ‘subject’ (the conceptual construct we are looking out from) into ‘object’ (what we are looking at) and we begin to approach a ‘higher’ cognitive stage.


  301. Hey Howard,

    Can you tell me why you contribute to this blog. No judgment attached, just really curious, And if you’re uncomfortable answering, no prob. Us mercs are curious sorts.

    thanks

    B


  302. on June 25, 2007 at 11:54 pm Spencer St Clair

    to Bonita’s Daughter,
    I heard that you are posting here now, but I don’t check the site often..kind of hard to find your posts. I would love to talk with you. Did you know that I joined in Hawaii the last day your mom was in the school? That was Christmas Day, 1973. I also was one of the few who joined with no prospective student meetings.. Well, I was in a relationship with a student, so every day was a PSM… anyway, it would be wonderful to hear from you. Do you know that I still tell stories about your wonderful canine companion in Portland and beyond, Mc(something). I love shelties!!! Oh oh.. I might be blowing your cover.. LOL.. write to me.. my email is enhance44@earthlink.net I hope to hear from you. I live in Olympia now..
    Spencer


  303. on June 26, 2007 at 12:19 am Laughing Love

    Hello.

    I’ve been away for a few weeks and it is a bit difficult to read posts and become oriented to the current discussion.

    A brief perusal reveals that there are new energies and ideas.

    Nevertheless, the Fellowship members reflect themselves similarly to their former posts. Oozing paranoia mixed with astounding negativity, absurd rudeness, flighty madness and brazen puerility seems to be the order of the day.

    It continues to fascinate me that they don’t listen to the many who have requested that they respond calmly and intelligently.

    I do admire the students who attempt to explain the concepts so thoroughly. It is wonderful to become well-versed in any teaching.

    Still, I wonder about their motives for participating.

    Do they want us to come back?

    Are they attempting to find themselves?

    At the same time, I’ve decided that it’s worth thinking about why I wish to participate on this discussion board.

    So, I am doing that. More later.

    LL


  304. on June 26, 2007 at 12:32 am Howard Carter

    To Across the River – 287

    Here lies the disconncet between you and I; is it possible for one to stay for the right reasons, rather than the overstated and simplistic reason you attribute to staying, i.e. “the fog of devotion”?

    You’re saying, if I interpret you correctly, that it’s possible (even inevitable) to leave for the right reason but not to stay for the right reason, and again, I would challenge how you are able to get into everyone’s mind who stays in order to ascertain that.

    But I do understand your’s and others reluctance to concede this point. There is a lot at stake. If you concede this one point it implies that if the FoF works for the right reasons for one soul, maybe it would work for others, maybe you.

    And maybe your leaving was due more from you not being able to take, or not wanting, what the school had to offer rather than the school not having the right things to give.

    Of course you wouldn’t allow me to navigate you into those choppy waters.


  305. “And maybe your leaving was due more from you not being able to take, or not wanting, what the school had to offer rather than the school not having the right things to give.”

    I think it’s more that one “finds”, under one’s own volition, what is useful in any situation, not the lack of “capacity” to take or want what it offers. But I think that’s besides the point. What one received is not due to the school, it’s due to one’s self and one’s search. It’s just another corner to look in. Some corners are piles of excrement, with maybe a jewel or two in the pile and it’s one’s own resource and faculties to extract it or not. Some corners are empty. Some you need to explore with a ten foot pole.

    But again, that has nothing to do with crime.


  306. on June 26, 2007 at 1:34 am Howard Carter

    WhaleRider – 294

    You are correct; obedience is a law. But you won’t find it in Wikipedia under “Higher Laws” either.


  307. Howard Carter 304

    If you concede this one point it implies that if the FoF works for the right reasons for one soul, maybe it would work for others, maybe you.

    And maybe your leaving was due more from you not being able to take, or not wanting, what the school had to offer rather than the school not having the right things to give.

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

    You are buffering the fact that we clearly understand what is going there:

    Foolofit) #595 Page 11

    “The only thing you need to know is the R. does what he does and definetely doesn’t care if the student can actually digest or process the experience. Some of the guys that went with him were at their first experience with a man or a woman! R. was the first experience for them.

    “Many of the young people left the school because it was the only way for them to stop traveling with R. I know the fof’ers will say that it was their choice. But then try to be a young solar-lunar(sorry for the language!) and resist your super-dominant teacher, very experienced in bending (figuratevely) people will …..

    “As he said to someone (still traveling with him now) 13 years ago, that was trying to stop traveling after I stopped: “You are a gift from Influence C to me, don’t ever ask me again to stop, take a week off and come back”. His choice of course, but with a lot of manipulation”

    “You are a gift…” He is telling this guy that he owns his body and can take it at will and the guy believes it. Anyone else see something more than sick in this “conscious” relationship.

    All this talk of the higher ideals of “school” is obscene in the light of what goes on in the backrooms of “a conscious teaching.” Your teacher is a ruthlessly selfish cult dictator and the people around him are the weak-willed, weak-minded types that fall under the dominion of spiritual criminals, they only escape when all innocence within them has been destroyed. See…this is the reason they are not happy about their experiences once they get away. Only then do they completely realize that they were used with less than nothing in return.

    Now we have a cheerful little creep like yourself posting lamely ineffective arguments about how it is possible that people that have left just don’t recognize the magic in what they once experienced. One day you might wake up enough to realize what a serious mistake you’re making by trying to justify this nicely veneered ugliness you mistakenly call a school.


  308. on June 26, 2007 at 4:47 am Howard Carter

    Bruce – 301

    “Hey Howard,

    Can you tell me why you contribute to this blog. No judgment attached, just really curious, And if you’re uncomfortable answering, no prob. Us mercs are curious sorts.”

    The underlying reason why I post on the blog is that certain statments wouldn’t be made, certain ideas wouldn’t be circulated unless by an FoF current member/supporter. Just like some other things wouldn’t get said unless it’s by a former member.

    I would stop short of saying the blog needs both points of view, but obviously I would not post if I didn’t think it filled some need of the moment. I don’t think there will ever be an even balance on the blog; although it was introduced to the FoF as a discussion group “for” FoF members, it’s really “for” ex-students, and the occassional current member who is a member in name only (I would call them ghost members).

    I think it’s good that only a few students post; it’s a sign that most are heeding Girard’s advice which I wholeheartly support. I also think it’s good a few do post; this serves a purpose and also shows that students think for themselves and can step into a realm where they feel a need to be, independent of official sanctioning.

    But like Siddiq said, a balance is good (my guess for number of posts, for – against, 15-20 to 1 is all we can expect). But without a few exponets the blog would be much less engaging, much more one dimentional.

    I don’t encourage any members to post, but I know there will come a time when I won’t feel I need to add anything more, and someone will probably claim the space I or another member vacates.


  309. on June 26, 2007 at 4:54 am Skeptical Optimist

    213 Shelley M.
    We had a conflict of interest at the time, and a different interpretation of faith.

    Shelley, thanks so much for telling this story—I had completely forgotten it. Yes, it’s true, that I tried to put the people I wanted to spend the least time with in the 92nd street house, and I had a lot of trouble with you back then.

    You were creative, smart, savvy, and dramatic. I was holding on to the only authority I had, and that I had learned to enjoy, and that came from RB & FoF. You were uncontrollable and, hence, dangerous, at least to my fantasy of being a “mini-RB” and ruling the NYCenter in a benign dictatorship. Talk about perks!

    Anyway, it was hopeless, of course, because in my case the authority wasn’t really in me, but in the “connection to the vine” no matter how hard I tried to be “independent”.

    I’m sorry I wasn’t confident enough to have treated you better. It was delightful to see you at the reunion, and your daughter is smashing. Thanks again for the memories.

    JoelF


  310. I’m sorry I asked. Your answer seems extraordinarily hypocritical and heavy on the judgment and BS concerning other “ghost” members.
    I was really trying and hoping for something different from you, but after all, you really are a putz.


  311. 309

    That was a very brave and poignant post Joel. You’re a mensch.


  312. Howard, of all the “members” who could post for a more balanced blog, your posts typify the worst of the believer micro cosmos. I’m speechless at the level of your vanity, self-blindness and narcissism.


  313. Well, I guess not speechless.


  314. Also, are their any present members who can verify that there is actually a Howard Carter (pseudonym or not), because I have never kicked the feeling that he, or she , is just another hierarchy shill?


  315. Howard Carter-#306

    Thanks again Howard for continuing to post, I know it cannot be any fun having your inconsistencies pointed out to you and the entire blogisphere at every turn you take, but when there are so many fence sitters out there and souls hanging in the balance, well you just have to stay in the game and keep swinging, don’t you? I admire you for that. Maybe someday we will meet. Then again, maybe not.

    You say: “…obedience is a law. But you won’t find it in Wikipedia under “Higher Laws” either.”

    Hmmm…obedience to Higher Laws. I think we can both agree that the purpose of evolution is to be under fewer laws, correct? And the best man-made laws are the ones that you wouldn’t normally break anyway, am I right? But I think you are referring to the laws that keep this Ray of Creation in a certain order of functioning, correct? You cannot have buck privates shouting orders at the troops when the battle is raging, there has to be a chain of command for everything to run smoothly, right? So moons orbit planets and planets orbit suns…etc.

    Ok, here’s a Higher Law for you. (…one you won’t find in Wikipedia, either) Our solar system has only one sun. Theoretically, according to Rodney Collin, there are planets such as Jupiter and Saturn that support moons and are on their way to becoming suns, like good planetary role models. Now the scale of a planet’s evolution is so great that we earthlings cannot really know if they are indeed evolving or if in reality those two characters are just imitating the sun, can we? But there is only one sun in our Ray of Creation. That’s the law.

    But do you know why there is only one sun? Why not two or three? Ever think of that? There is only one sun in this Ray of Creation for the same reason that a real school can only have one conscious being. The gravitational forces would be so complex in a dual solar system that two or more suns would not be able to support a stable planetary system such as ours, and therefore no planet(s) such as ours that could support biological life as we know it could exist either. Now I could be proven wrong at some point in the future, but as it stands the planets that we are discovering even as you read this are in single solar systems like ours. Isn’t that interesting? One sun, life. Two or more suns, no life. That’s the law.

    So what happens when a student in a ‘real’ school evolves into a conscious being and starts to shine like their teacher? Either they themselves or the teacher quells their evolution so they stay or, guess what, they leave. Don’t you find it odd that all the supposed men number fives in the FOF have left? (Excluding Mr. Haven of course, which some may argue speaks to his actual level of being.) Lesser men would just keep their mouths shut and go with the program…but they didn’t. They left. The same could be said of Mr. G and Mr. O.

    Then aren’t those whom are actually evolving just obeying Higher Laws by leaving?


  316. on June 26, 2007 at 6:57 am Cake please

    Long caged bird

    Imploding or exploding
    not knowing which

    But what is clear is
    this long caged bird still can fly

    these weakened wings head for the blue sky
    magically buoyed by all those that have taken flight before

    What is clear is
    the song that now fills my heart
    is the most beautiful that has echoed through this tiny body

    No longer knowing if that sunlight radiates from within or without
    and no longer caring

    so filled with joy

    the bars are your own

    from the other side
    Cake


  317. Howard,
    “Obedience is a law” ???

    Interesting example of gibberish. RB’s cosmology was always half-baked. Yours is predictably in line with his.
    I believe your beloved teacher once stated sagely that after he dies he will share an apartment with Leonardo on the sun. Presumably air conditioning would be one of the laws of world 12?
    Love,
    Ryan


  318. Hello Bruce, you asked: if there are their any present members who can verify that there is actually a Howard Carter (pseudonym or not), because I have never kicked the feeling that he, or she , is just another hierarchy shill?

    There is a person who posts under the name Howard Carter, I can tell you that this person is a real person, a real student, and the reasons Howard posts makes sense to me–why doubt it, or see some conspiracy in it? It may irritate you, and I am sure you realize your posts may have the same effect on some. All of the petty bickering is exactly what the Fellowship is trying to move away from.

    I have said before that some present students only post to make sure for some blog-travelers that not all that is said about the Fellowship or Robert is agreed with and to engage in some discussions of interest when and where possible.

    There is no attempt to win anyone back in–and while it may be hard to believe, the blog is now very much a non-issue at Isis. Simply put, more important things need to be done–just reading these posts after taking a day “off” from the blog is overwhelming by its sheer quantity.

    For your information, Robert has not read a single line of this blog and it is unlikely he will. He has not tried to dissuade anyone from leaving and will not do so. More important there is no judgment from him about it, or about the students–he is simply not even thinking about it or about former students. This may seem different from years ago (and it is)–a sign of evolution, as I see it.

    Good luck to All,

    Siddiq


  319. Unanimo, you write about “very different ‘aims’” as between students and former students. I do not know what your aims are, care to tell us?

    I know for myself what my aims are in relation to what I will simply call my inner work. These are the reasons I joined, so I assume they are familiar to you and most on this blog.

    I am not assuming just by being a former student in the Fellowship that you have no inner work, or inner aims any longer, but the act of leaving the Fellowship, no matter how gratifying, cannot be an aim in and of itself, and does not simply give one the right “aim” without doing something further, I imagine.

    Siddiq


  320. Hey Siddiq,

    I’m a raving, nympho, lesbian in a mans body and Leonardo wants you to take Darvon and have a threesome with me and a student from Kiev who’s here on a religious visa.

    Love,
    Ryan.
    p.s. I can fit you in tomorrow between 12 and 12.30
    p.p.s. Gee Whizz! Drink lot’s of water in the morning.


  321. Siddiq 318

    For your information, Robert has not read a single line of this blog and it is unlikely he will. He has not tried to dissuade anyone from leaving and will not do so. More important there is no judgment from him about it, or about the students–he is simply not even thinking about it or about former students. This may seem different from years ago (and it is)–a sign of evolution, as I see it.

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

    From:
    http://www.freedomofmind.com/resourcecenter/groups/f/fellowship/fmrmbr_statement.htm

    “Finally, Robert Burton relished destroying anyone who had the temerity to leave FOF. He had his assistant call me after I had left to inform me that, in his words “I had died”.”

    The theory is that Blowjob Bob is actually evolving, now he doesn’t bother to order a boy to call and inform you of your death when you leave.


  322. on June 26, 2007 at 10:02 am Bass Ackwards

    To Chopsticks [#261]
    “What does the name (Bass Ackwards) mean?

    You may have missed it so I’ll repeat, from a previous BA post [#20]: “So that finally, I have come to realize that even from a Consciousness point of view, in the Fellowship, we have it all “Bass Ackwards”. We have 90% truth yet with a 10% falsity distortion coming from viewing work on one’s Self from the wrong direction, from the point of view of a (partially crystallized) machine, but not from a fully enlightened source.”

    Chopsticks, maybe you are not a native English (or American) speaker? To understand something “ass backwards”, just means to see or understand something from the wrong direction, from the wrong side. I think that is the core issue of the whole blog explosion towards the Fellowship of Friends and Robert Burton. The point is not that we nor Robert nor the Fellowship have got it all wrong, but rather we have not got it all right, either. We have understood things from the wrong direction. There is something essentially formatory about our whole approach to Consciousness, which can take 10, 20, or 30 years to see, if ever.

    An example: for years, we all have taken Robert’s behaviour and tried to not identify, not express negative emotions, separate from Feminine Dominance, etc… But that is all Bass Ackwards, because the real problem is not us, but what those actions have done to Robert himself. i.e. what he has sacrificed by drilling deeper into his boys rather than his own Self. And the spiritual poverty of our School is the result.

    Another example: our work on Consciousness is primarily from the point of view of the machine. How to control it, how to manipulate it, how to nurse ecstasy from it, etc… From our numerous exercises, to the use of the Sequence, Robert teaches a really basic duality rather than inspiring us from his own inclusive Higher Centers. Why? Because they are not as well developed as we imagine them to be, so that is where he is stuck. Try to understand that our approach to Self-Rembering itself is formatory(!). The explosion of nondualism into the current of 21st century spiritual life explains just how formatory that approach really is.

    Self Rembering what is it? Who is it? Where does it lead? Is Self Remembering different than Self Realization? Is my Self different than your Self? Is there an Individual Self? Is there a Universal Self? There are so many posts relating to the thread of this idea already, that I won’t bother to explain it now. Just go ahead and examine it for yourself. The issue devolves then to whether our formatory approach to awakening is intrinsic to the Fourth Way or is it just Robert’s interpretation of it? My guess is that it is a little of both, as the Fourth Way does contain a lot of knowledge about the machine, but a truly awakened being would not have gotten stuck there.

    On another scale, further examples of getting Conscious Work on one’s Self Bass Ackwards can be seen in any one of the Myths that were enumerated earlier (discussion 12, post # [197]). Our little self enclosed world at Isis, or more simply within the walls of the School, can be seen as an expression of our misunderstanding. The external isolation we insist upon is based upon basic duality distictions of “us” and “them”. The “lower self” and the “higher centers”. “School” and “Life. Going beyond these artificial boundaries signifies real and true work upon one’s Self. Those boundaries don’t exist. You know why? Because real penetration to one’s Self means realizing that you, as a person, don’t exist either. True work on one’s Self means the dissolution through understanding of the Lower Self. Not a formatory application of denial, supression and control. We have surrounded ourselves with a structure that inhibits such a realization. Hmmmmm……

    And finally, as you can guess, if we have gotten it bass ackwards, you can guess which side we have been using.

    Love,
    Bass


  323. Hello ~ 314 Bruce

    You wrote ~

    “Also, are their any present members who can verify that there is actually a Howard Carter (pseudonym or not), because I have never kicked the feeling that he, or she , is just another hierarchy shill?”
    _____________________

    Hello, again, Bruce ~

    H.C. is the name of the unlucky two brained being who was directed by certain ‘momentary vibratory whiffs of gold dust’ that discovered King Tut’s Tomb… which, according to scholars, on the scale of the ‘big dude pharaohs’ was ‘small potatoes’.

    So, yes, a pseudonym, i.e., some guy who goes around digging up, shiny solid gold dead things and putting them in museums or blog sites.
    ____________________________________

    Hello Siddiq ~

    You wrote ~

    1. “All of the petty bickering is exactly what the Fellowship is trying to move away from.

    2. the blog is now very much a non-issue at Isis. Simply put, more important things need to be done–just reading these posts after taking a day “off” from the blog is overwhelming by its sheer quantity.

    3. I do not know what your aims are, care to tell us?”

    ___________________________________

    That’s one of the amazing phenomenons about this blog site, sometimes I sense that the only person who could really click into this place, I mean really ‘jive with it all’ is some guy with an iron stomach & hooked up to a dialysis machine, who has just eaten 4 bowls of Texan volcano chili, downed 8 Beck’s beers, chased with a half gallon of Rum, smoking a whole pack of non-filtered camel cigarettes stuffed in his mouth and two cigars in each nostril, while running on an exercise treadmill, hooked up to a cardiac resuscitation electrode machine that gives him jolts every 30 seconds, listening to Laurence Whelk, Skinny Puppy and Deep South, Methodist Gospel, all at the same time + watching a quad split giant flat screen TV; one showing Apocalypse Now, My Private Idaho, Oprah and sesame street. Oh, while from time to time reading the blog and commenting.

    ________________________________

    1. Siddiq; you’re really too naive to be all that bad, so, in my heart I simply see you and H.C. as two little boys, about 8 years old, who, having never turned over a large flat stone deep within a forest (without your mothers being present) are simply stunned to find the incredible battle within yourselves going on, one side says ‘go ahead, do it, she’ll never know’,

    while another says, yeah, but what if there’s a deadly snake under there and one of us dies, then I’ll be to blame and mom will kill me then.

    Luckily, as most boys and tom-girls eventually figure, that there is a ‘third state’ after all, its called ‘a ten foot pole’,

    yet, to your incredible surprise, once you do lift the stone over with said ‘fishing pole’, you’re 10 feet away and can’t really see all ‘the good stuff’.

    Well, by the time you’re 18 or 19 you’ve bought such wiseacring devices as telescopes, binoculars, computers that can access blog sites belonging to ‘real stone turner overers’ hence;

    no need to get too close, touch, hold, feel… Hey, that’s what National Geographic videos are for;

    why get torn apart by a raging silver backed gorilla when you can watch someone else having an unprescribed and rather unsanitary vivisection?

    “petty bickering” or ‘subconscious-self-prescribed buffer zone for he who administers and procures such things as he or she vehemently claims they do not have from others?’

    All the petty bickering is exactly what you’re involved in via this blog site; (and your posts provoke it too, both from readers and yourself, after all, the calm of an expert marksman always creates a mess… yes?)

    In all honesty, and I mean honesty, I am certain that both you and HC, deeply feel the self-readiness building up as you click those letter keys upon the keyboard, knowing all the while what effect, what buttons your features wish to push, will you’re pushing your own simultaneously, so to self calm yourselves with the subjective ‘fact’ that ‘since opposites attract, I am real for having attracted them’…

    This is also a motto of the Fellowship of Friends, i.e., ‘So long as I identify myself as a struggling self, I am, therefore never without company to talk to myself with.’

    I verified this nearly two months ago when I rallied blog members to stop writing to HC, because I sensed it was simply a ploy of his particular features, to reinforce his addiction to affirmations, (and those on the blog site too) opposition being one of them, as people stopped responding, HC disappeared for some time…

    For me, this showed and shows that its just a catharsis for both of you, with a level of being that never changes, at least not in the written word. Perhaps this will change when you wear out your cerebellums and jump start your hearts:

    if you were conscious, would you procure painful, self loath causing, damaged-essence causing, infra-anal-type sex with young women under the legal age by coercing them with wine and hypnotic suggestions that you’re the one and only ‘big daddy’, the second coming of Joseph Campbell’s Archetypal ‘one’… all the while pressing on said ‘minor’ that their parents are ‘majors’? A young woman close to one of Robert Burton’s ‘boys’ once asked him what it was like, he replied, “It’s like getting raped.”

    If the answer is ‘yes’; then stay right where you are and we’ll pick you up in the helicopter later… wear something bright, floral, not to formal.

    Yes, some painbodies need even that level of pain awareness… We live in strange times and always have, the numbers have changed, (BTW, there’s not 70 billion people on the planet, whoever wrote that earlier on the blog, good grief… that’s R.B.’s little profundity queen of diamonds quote of the whole number of humanity since the snake and apple thing), though the form has not changed a bit: Macintosh on the outside, coconut juice on the inside: yet that’s a law, we all start from coconut juice; just try not to make an Olympic swimming pool from it.

    Hummmm…. See Siddiq, when you’re in your head you cannot wear the other Indian’s moccasins (real external considering and doing; wisdom can prevent ignorance and visa versa), hence you walk barefooted in a Zen garden surrounded by twenty foot, seamless steel walls… you can see the stars, yet, not the one’s that can humble your brain and verify your heart muscles; those ‘stars’ who toss from time to time last news newspaper over the wall to you, with all the ‘risky’ articles cut out for your own good.

    If you go back and re-read all the major questions posted to both you and HC, neither of you really got into those questions personally; you mean you’ve never been touched by someone who, you yourself was not attracted to touch second or first? Hummmmm.

    Hypocrisy: yes Siddiq, this blog is sending out ‘certain psychic vibrations ‘C Influence’ that’s getting into the plastic lined carpets, eventually you will witness the fruition of a plastic fruit tree.

    Yes, a certain amount of pain is inevitable in a ‘Real School, with a Real teacher’… Yet, never the sort that damages Essence, never… A real teacher knows the invisible lines not to cross with his ‘stick’; he or she also teaches this to the students, something neither you or HC has learned from Robert Burton; you both have his placidness and cold cottage cheese indifference served with thirty chilled deviled eggs…. Ummmm, no thanks, I’ll just stick with water tonight.

    I want to be wrong about this, yet, there you guys are and here I am typing words to you, yet, somehow I want you to stay, for I sense there’s a deeper root that feeds off all this ‘tennis with no net’ playing; and hopefully your computers won’t be confiscated before the breakthrough occurs.

    ______________

    2. As far as the blog being a non-issue, BTW, Robert Burton has assigned, from the very beginning, a student of the inner inner inner circle, to daily keep ‘an I’ on the blog and report any signs of ‘proof’ or ‘pending doom’: now, Siddiq, do you really think, due to all the law suits Robert Burton wears, the ‘beyond the non-planet Pluto’ insurance premiums you members pay for the sex guru high risk policy, that a ‘certain leak’ would not merit foresight, hindsight? Sight?

    Really, you guys are momma’s boys.

    This blog is being read every day by ‘ the concerned ‘; also, you might like to know that there is a very, very good possibility that a major class-action law suit ‘a one size fits all suit’ will be filed against the Fellowship of Friends stating that every student ‘from day one’ is entitled to ‘certain green somethings’; there are major fraud and coercion issues within your School of Love or Shove, you choose.
    _____________________________

    One of the ‘weird things’ about this blog is that current members get identified with what Robert Burton and coercers have done, then justify his ‘innocence’ by sub-consciously projecting a kind of ‘But, hey, I didn’t do anything, It’s not my sex life, I didn’t know and still don’t really, really know.’ (Not that you are making any holy reconciliation attempts to find out). Gotta keep the affirmations ‘up’.

    So in this ‘current student innocence’ a really weird triad occurs, they loose themselves by trying to find a picture of Robert Burton that they can focus on, yet can’t, so they side step that awhile and focus on first line (and a little second on Sundays, just to keep it up).

    Eventually, third line will sneak up on you and well, be ready my friends, its a tough bite: I’ve even seen a few half-chairs circulating in the Collin Office.

    Avoiding yourself to believe a school…. Rock on Fred!

    3. Actually, my friend, I am not up to anything… Then again I think that’s what Howard Carter said to the group of Egyptian bandits who cornered him one night on his way back from a meeting at the Egyptian museum where he was laying out plans to start the dig and procurement of said ‘treasures’.

    So, don’t forget, to remember.

    _________________________________

    Love to you all.


  324. on June 26, 2007 at 12:13 pm Across the River

    To Howard Carter re post 304 (responding to post 287):

    All those who finally leave Robert did arrive and stay for the right reason.

    I don’t question your reason for staying. You will hear most all former members express something gained in the experience.

    The fog of devotion is what attributes to Robert the role of creator.

    By looking at Robert’s organization as objectively as one can, his stated aims are brought into serious question.

    So you ask if it’s possible to stay for the right reason rather than in the fog of devotion. I say once the fog factor is removed, there’s no right reason to stay, which was the point of my original post 287.

    I like the right/wrong nature of your question.

    Still wondering if you’ve ever had doubts about Robert?

    Not sure what you mean by “choppy waters”. . . . .


  325. on June 26, 2007 at 2:24 pm Bass Ackwards

    To respond to David [#126]

    Some of the more interesting questions many of us are experiencing these days is:
    What is School, anyway?
    and
    Will I always need it?

    So I appreciate your attempt to long-thought it. Of course what is hard, is to separate our book knowledge (G & O & RC) from what we have been told by Robert, in addition to what we have personally experienced. Thus, at this point and for myself only, I am ready to put to one side whatever Robert has said on the subject, and try at least to consider what I understand from G, O, and RC, then also to compare that to the reality of existence in the FOF.

    The bottom line for School existence seems to be three lines of work, functioning as a means for bridging first line intervals. Yes, we certainly have three lines and they can function in the way described above. What I find interesting when I think about it, is that relative to the current form, I use my first and second line to bridge intervals in the third line, which is to say there are so many strange, hypocritical and difficult impressions that come in from the School these days that it takes a great deal of first and second line energy to transform it. Strange to say it that way, but that is how it sifts out at the moment, and of course it is not a black and white experience, either.

    Yet it has not always been that way. The vineyard, though physically difficult, afforded, together with other students, many opportunities for lovely essence experiences. Pure chances to push presence past the boundaries of a tired machine. Concerts, serving at Apollo D’Oro or the Galleria, cooking in the kitchens, sorting seeds in the Palm garden, or working in Landscaping. All these and more existed and some remain still.

    But, what has changed? In the last years there has been an increasing emphasis upon an almost compulsory attendance to Events along with their attendant high cost. While the Teaching itself grew less and less personally interesting, the image of ‘Our Beloved Teacher’ seemed to increase in importance. These and many other impressions have served to make the School a currently psychologically unpleasant and uninteresting experience for many students.

    Another idea relative to the existence of a School is that it exists for it’s own purposes, that is, to fill some need for humanity. From that angle it can be seen as to be guided by someone who is clued in to Higher Centers and thus knows what is needed. Robert has always maintained that the Fellowship serves as an Ark for Humanity, guided (through him) by Influence C. It still may be that, which is how the Sequence and the Keys have emerged into a new formulation of our School’s Mission on Earth. To fully accept that mission means to accept that Robert is fully Conscious, that his Higher Centers are accurately reading the signs from Influence C and that Influence C is best revealed to students through understanding the Keys and the Sequence.

    It is that last sentence that also describes much of the current turmoil as exemplified in this Blog as well as the School. Not everyone thinks Robert is fully Conscious especially given his hypocritical and not-so-conscious actions. Not everyone thinks, given his track record, that he is able to accurately read the signs from Influence C. Finally, not everyone thinks that Influence C is best revealed through understanding the Keys and the Sequence as evidenced by the profound esoteric material currently circulating out there in “Life”.

    Where does one go from here? Some (more) will go. Some will stay, and the School will bugger on. That’s that. Some will use this Blog to sort out their thinking in order to rationalize going or staying, and that is also that. Is it a real School? And even if it is, does that mean staying for ever? And if it currently isn’t a real School, is staying here a waste of time? Try to figure it out for your Self and be ready to be courageous enough to act upon your understanding.

    Love,
    Bass


  326. on June 26, 2007 at 2:37 pm More history needed?

    Yes it is a pretty good source. I heard a friend of my went to see LT/K and came back with the same story. I can not give details as that would jeopardized my friend and my names away.

    Of course it can be changed any moment but not likely as too many people will leave and that would not help the fellowship of friends in Oregon House at this point.

    Of course LT/K knows who were at the Reunion thanks to teh pictures and students were on those pictures too. This seemed to be unavoidable…They have not been asked any questions….

    Do not worry and be true to yourself. Fear is a bad adviser.
    Enjoy and LIVE


  327. on June 26, 2007 at 2:58 pm wake up little suzy wake up

    Upon reading the last post:

    When I think about how I too while in the Fellowship allowed others to control me, inasmuch as what I could and couldn’t do and in particular with regards to seeing other people and making life decisions it saddens me, because it stifled my creative growth. But I put myself under this control, nobody else was holding a gun to my head. I had to grow out of it myself as others seem to be doing. Freedom is a relative term I guess depending on where you are physically and emotionally. Freedom of expression is paramount to creating oneself in a healthy way.


  328. Bass Ackwards #325

    “The bottom line for School existence seems to be three lines of work, functioning as a means for bridging first line intervals.”

    Consider the possibility that the bottom line of the school’s existence is to teach its students that three lines of work are necessary to evolve and grow. Period. Once that is verified, the student is free to move on and duplicate the three lines of work in life for themselves. Work on oneself, work with other loved ones and friends whatever their level of being, and work for the community in which one chooses to live. Why waste one’s third line of work on such a corrupt and grandiose organization as the FOF or one’s second line with such vain and insincere people? Think of the effect on the world if the thousands of ex-FOFers continued their work in this manner? Many are. Together we could actually make a difference in the world, NOW, not after some predicted future cataclysmic event AND continue to evolve ourselves.

    All you need is to believe in yourself and apply what you have paid so dearly to learn. We can support each other here to do just that.


  329. on June 26, 2007 at 3:39 pm wake up little suzy wake up

    Thanks Whalerider! I think the Greater Fellowship website can make that kind of thing happen.


  330. Whalerider, all great aims (#328)–add to that to also work with people that are vain (albeit sincere) you do not always like and cannot always get along with…sounds like family?


  331. ShelleyM #213 and JoelF #309

    Thanks Joel and Shelley, for leading the way and speaking from your hearts. Your honesty was a pleasure to experience. I could feel your presence. That’s healthy role modeling.

    Thanks, Joel, sharing your work in a public forum, too, there’s plenty of room here for work of such a personal nature like that, many mansions in fact. In my humble opinion, I can feel your higher centers at work sensing the opportunity of this blog and being proactive in raising your level of being by placing yourself on the ‘hot seat’, despite getting so royally flamed at first. That displays the virtues of courage and wisdom.


  332. My membership in the FoF officially ended today.

    I just want to say thank you to all the good people I’ve met over the years in the FoF, for teaching each other about life, love and beauty, as best as we all could. And thank you to all the good people I’ve met through the blog, who have helped me enormously over the past few months to process “what happened” in the last 10 1/2 years, helped put the story of “the School” in a larger context and allowed healing to take place. I hope that my writings in turn have been helpful to others. Some will have perceived my words as hurtful: I’m sorry and I wish you all the best.

    My warmest greetings go to those unknown friends who are not reading now but will one day discover this blog, whenever they feel the need and take the time to have a closer look.

    Any and all are welcome to write or stay in touch.

    Love and blessings,

    Nika

    1996-2007
    transfof@gmail.com


  333. Congratulations and best wishes Nika. You most likely will look back today as one of the best and most profound decisions you’ve made for your work.


  334. on June 26, 2007 at 6:24 pm Ames Gilbert

    To Traveller (#13-332)
    I can still remember the literally first breath I took when Peter Bishop said I was ‘out’. It was a good breath, much deeper than usual, followed by a big sigh as I exhaled. That breath and that sigh represented so much more than just the physical action… I am sure you and all others who have left know exactly what I mean!
    I wish you great blessings and joy on your continuing journey, I send you many thanks for your honest, decent and clear thoughts on this blog. You have been a great help. And, I hope you continue your contributions!
    With love and encouragement,
    Ames


  335. Nika #332

    You have taken a bold step in your evolution. I promise to make myself available on this blog to support you on your new path as long as I am able. I highly recommend the Greater Fellowship site for support as well.

    This is the land of the free only for those brave enough to be at home with themselves.

    Remember:

    “Well-behaved women seldom make history.”

    ~Laurel Thatcher Ulrich


  336. on June 26, 2007 at 6:45 pm Howard Carter

    To Siddiq

    Unoanimo is not a former student; he is a current student.


  337. Traveler 332

    My membership in the FoF officially ended today.

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

    Soon you will realize that you have lost nothing and gained nothing, there was a reason you were in a nutty cult and that reason has not gone away.


  338. Traveler, Good Luck to you, and thanks for the useful discussions and contributions.

    S.

    PS Thanks Howard


  339. 337

    Nika,

    Graduate just want to show you that a moron is a moron, in or out. But you knew that.


  340. Graduate,

    You are, after all is said and done, and asshole.


  341. Bruce 340

    Graduate,

    You are, after all is said and done, an[d] asshole.

    ***********

    Bullshit.


  342. on June 26, 2007 at 8:00 pm Was KathleenW

    337 Graduates

    “Soon you will realize that you have lost nothing and gained nothing, there was a reason you were in a nutty cult and that reason has not gone away.”
    ————————-

    Nika, there is at least one person here (me) for whom this is absolutely NOT true. Not a single point in that paragraph has been true for me. Well, perhaps except for the nutty cult part. Even that had its good points.


  343. on June 26, 2007 at 8:05 pm We Were There

    Nika (332 Traveler)

    Congratulations.

    I second Whalerider’s recommendation to join the Greater Fellowship – a place that let’s us connect and reconnect on a more personal level with old friends and new.

    …………………………………………….

    337 Graduates

    “… you have lost nothing and gained nothing, there was a reason you were in a nutty cult and that reason has not gone away.’

    Traveller HAS lost nothing – and leaving is a giant step in the direction of reality.

    ……………………………………………

    And while I am at it, I want to personally thank Whalerider for his many brave posts (he is one who KNOWS he ‘has nothing to lose…’).

    And let’s raise a glass to the Sheik – who has helped all of this to happen!


  344. Nika,

    For me, your blog contributions have been among the most worthwhile. I do hope you continue to share your thoughts.

    Enjoy this unfolding of a New World!

    (And I too recommend the Greater Fellowship network.)

    Tim


  345. I’m pretty sure she’s been on the network for awhile.


  346. As are quite a few present members.


  347. We Were There 343

    337 Graduates:

    “… you have lost nothing and gained nothing, there was a reason you were in a nutty cult and that reason has not gone away.’

    Traveller HAS lost nothing – and leaving is a giant step in the direction of reality.

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

    Maybe, maybe not. Are you assuring her that you’ve verified that reality exists outside the FOF and therefore experiencing reality is possible for her as well? Because if you are then I have my doubts, but maybe.

    Nika had the need to “wake up” before she joined the nutty cult and she likely has the need to “wake up” outside the nutty cult, those that lose something are those that have lost the understanding that waking up is still necessary in order to complete yourself as a human being.

    And, let’s face it, we were in the nutty cult because we were/are a bunch of lunatics. The FoF is/was so dysfunctional that “normal” people do not end up there (at least not for long), we were/are cracked pots. Anyone that can’t admit that is stuck.


  348. #316 Cake

    Pretty.


  349. 320 Ryan O Poo.
    Funny but true!!
    the best to you.
    Cy.


  350. Cake, Nika, and so many more. Would you be willing to share your stories on the greater fellowship network? Both of your posts have been profound and moving and I would like to hear more!

    One word about the ‘what if’ the ‘school’ was ‘real’. Sigh. Maybe it is – so what? One could get into an intensely present state as a torturer. Does that mean that this is what you want to learn?


  351. Siddiq (318): “the blog is now very much a non-issue at Isis”.

    This is simply not true. Most of the students I talk to read the blog avidly and slowly but surely start to think for themselves again.


  352. on June 26, 2007 at 9:34 pm Veronicapoe

    For those interested, “January 1982 Letter to Robert” is now online:

    http://www.archive.org/details/TheEsotericHistoryArchive_523


  353. 350. KA Said- “One could get into an intensely present state as a torturer. Does that mean that this is what you want to learn?”
    Sorry K A that jobs already been taken by RB.
    and now for something completely different! Do any of you think that just maybe, Wiki isnt gospel, so many people use it to back up their arguments. check this

    .http://www.wikiprotest.com/index.php?title=Media_Ownership_in_America

    332. Traveller. Nika, excuse us we tend to get over excited when a prodigal returns.
    love Cy.


  354. Graduates,

    Really, it’s time for you to crawl back to your hole.


  355. The people from the FOF that are posting and defending are either ignorant of the relation of the blog to the FOF, or are never really going to be honest about it, to us, but primarily to themselves. They can’t afford it. They are here for “a reason”.


  356. 353

    You already posted this crap before. Didn’t get enough attention last time?


  357. For those interested, “Account of Barbara Bruno Lancaster” is now online:

    http://www.archive.org/details/TheEsotericHistoryArchive_416


  358. Graduates

    Do you remember your post about “sour and bitter” people, and what their lives turn into. I can now see that you were speaking from personal experience. Try spreading your s**t around your own cave.


  359. The link didnt activate for some reason, perhaps moderation?

    http://www.wikiprotest.com/index.php?title=Media_Ownership_in_America

    so I try again. Cy.


  360. on June 26, 2007 at 9:48 pm Veronicapoe

    Visit The Esoteric History Archive: Veronicapoe’s bookmarks:

    http://www.archive.org/bookmarks/Veronicapoe


  361. Graduates:

    Did you previously post in this blog as “The King of Clubs”?


  362. Bruce 357

    Graduates,

    Do you remember your post about “sour and bitter” people, and what their lives turn into. I can now see that you were speaking from personal experience. Try spreading your s**t around your own cave.

    ***********

    I’m a realist, non-sentimental. I know that irks you, but my guess is you will eventually agree with my reasoning if only reluctantly. Meanwhile I particularly enjoy your variety of gut-reaction opposition because it gives me a chance to resist my own gut-reactions. So thanks for that.

    There is no “reality” within the FoF and there no guarantee of contact with reality outside the FoF. All the negativity, such as Bruce’s reactions, that gets stirred up when unpleasant points of view are raised comes from forgetting that what you believe, that what you feel and what you think is not reality. For the most part what is assumed to be reality is the internal psychological politics of vanity defending itself against the truth.


  363. “I’m a realist, non-sentimental. ”

    No, you’re just an a**hole. The reality is self evident.


  364. 357. We are adults here its ok to say shit, fuck, cocksucking mother fucker, asswipe etc etc. Gurdjieff collected some beautifull swearwords in many languages and lliked to use them seemingly. So go on its ok, no one will spank you be a devil!

    .http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6D7rWLzloOI&mode=related&search=

    The link above is of osho doing a master class. This is what it may end up like at Isis. love Cy


  365. Fuck

    I hope the asshole works this time. love CY


  366. Hmm… should we rename this thread “Letters to Howard”, or maybe “Howards End”?
    Gratitude to all you valiant contributors for not giving up, for giving your best, for making us laugh. Frustration is on the rise, even Tim is feeling the heat.
    I actually feel the flames burning closer, and poor Howard is marching unknowingly into the lion’s then as he inadvertently makes the faux pas of dragging even Jesus into this mudhole. I quote (Post 241):

    “The earthly behavior of conscious teachers are matchless to the other world, but shoddy, even criminal seeming, to this world. This is all part of the payment for diciples. And it certainly serves to seperate the ones who have locked in on the other world from the ones who are still unbelievers,_or unconvinced.
    Christ’s “crimes” were considered heinous in his day. He_was put to death by the government for them.
    The morality of heaven is much different than the morality of earth. Around this fact is where a lot of the disconnect begins.”

    Now, Howard, I heard something about Esoteric Christianity being somewhat related to that older system you used to study… Ever read the Gospels recently? Plenty of sex and money scandals, as I clearly recall.

    Yes, Now I Remember, that’s why He was crucified! No, I am not even getting started or my head will explode ! And that would be mechanical, right ?

    I am surprised to be the first to show a strong emotional reaction to this iniquity. Maybe I did get some catholic brainwashing after all!

    Anyway, Howard, blasphemy is not a virtue. And real angels can be terrible. I wouldn’t name the spirit world in vain, if I were you. The game is getting dangerous, I feel the heat rising. Maybe Armageddon is only one year late?

    The timing of Shelley’s post seemed suspiciously à propos, don’t you agree? Are you shining your crystal ball these days? (by the way, thank you Shelley, you’re marvellous)

    Su lucky not to believe in hell.

    Unoanimo 299
    What you write means a lot to me, I just want you to know that. Shine on you crazy diamond.

    I salute you with a small but sweet musical offering.
    This one goes out to everyone, and especially to you, HC (higher centers, right?)
    Crazy in Love
    Laura

    PS by the way, this is what I envision when I think of a goddess trapped in a man’s body


  367. on June 26, 2007 at 10:17 pm Gabriella F.

    Traveler,
    Your posts have been the most inspiring for me… !! Thank you Nika. With all the love I can offer, Gabriella


  368. Cyclops, after that clip I’ll never use a swear word again (maybe). What a clown Osho was.

    RB needs a throne like that, only pink faux fur instead of silver Naugahyde.


  369. 362

    I try not to use such words gratuitously, like in your post, but point taken.


  370. Cake please 316

    What a lovely song of freedom
    Gratitude


  371. Cyclops:

    Thanks for the lighter side.

    “Associatively”, this one came up next on YouTube. Could this be LKT talking?


  372. Ahhh, Joanna. A treasure.

    Tim, it’s an interesting clip because Sheela apparently tried to put a “hit” (literally) on some students who were against her during a power struggle.

    It will be interesting to see what happens when RB passes through the feathers.


  373. 296 Lust for Life
    wrote
    “What are the ‘paths’ that all these different systems supposedly create that lead to the truth? Do this exercise, follow this rule, deny this thought or feeling or desire, cultivate that thought or feeling or desire or state? NO! Any system or path is another illusion that we are ‘evolving’ by degrees, when it is really lulling us to sleep, dreaming that we are awake. Belonging to a group or following a system prevents us finding out for ourselves what the truth is because we can only come to it by knowing and relying on ourselves”
    This post is not clearly thought out and contains so many inner contradictions that it is difficult to even start to comment on In addressing reality it is first necessary to accept that everything is exactly they way it need be. Those forces that create and maintain our world are not interested in your opinions. Get over yourself.. It goes back to Spencer’s introduction of a “non-dualistic approach” your using words that imply a system to deny the value of a system. The fact that you chose not to call your current opinion a “belief system or conceptual framework” does not change what it is. Any system or path is not an illusion this is too broad ranging to be true. It also contradicts the Law of three that states that any of the three forces can be conducted by the same event or thing. Have you studied the theory of triads enough to recognize this idea.?
    Your post also shows a lack of internal logic. If the Law of three is true. ( which you can argue) then as soon as you state that some event or process is “always” something its wrong. There are some always that are true 4 is always more than 2. A lb. is greater than an oz., 40 years is less than 100. There are those who may argue these points. They are called fools. This is called a universal statement which means it must always be true there can be no exception. One exception makes the statement false. This violates the obvious. There are systems, there are paths, there are processes. Individuals, great teachers, and civilizations incorporate and include systems of belief.. These may be what is useful and necessary at one point in a process then become a denying force at another. Evolution is movement and change. “Words are just words, theories just theories and both tend to weave a web of thought that we get caught up in instead of relying on our inner intelligence and conscience which is pretty much wordless.”
    Does this actually sound at all intelligent to you? You just said to practice self remembering in another way. It is the arch absurd to use words to argue against the use of words. Get over it, its a dead end, like painting yourself into a corner. Also its better with some things to be specific not general. That you are at a point where you experience going beyond forms and words does not make this a law for everyone. We all exist on our own unique line or spiral of time. My past is part of my present. All is process means movement in time, it means change over time. It means a before a now and an after. It describes interaction of the law of three and the Law of seven. Any system can conduct any of the three forces. This is part of the knowledge of the I-Ching.
    My path is my experience it makes me who and what I am a unique cell in a larger cosmos. My sole real contribution is to be myself. To take in as much as I can. To be whatever I am. Words are not everything but on an internet site where only words exist they are everything and the failure to be clear is a total failure. You cannot say “oh you know what I mean” It becomes my or your responsibility to use words to describe what ever it is you are trying to communicate.
    Words are only words try eating a “sandwich ” for lunch. It doesn’t work huh? Its a word but no amount of words will make a good lunch. Well glad we got that settled moving right along…….


  374. Tim,

    In one of the Osho clips, it quotes that he says that he chose Sheela as his secretary, not because she understood his vision but because he needed a parrot.

    A parrot=HC, Siddiq, and the others.


  375. Bruce

    No, you’re just an a**hole.

    *****

    Do you realize you look like Phil Spector:

    When anyone sees one of Bruce’s well formulated messages on the board, think “Phil Spector.” You wouldn’t pay much attention to the opinions of Phil Spector would you? Why listen to someone that could pass for his brother?

    How’s that for an ad hominem attack?


  376. 373 Yes, very logical and intelligent. Maybe if you weren’t such a pussy, and used your real name and we could find a comparison for you. Isn’t it amazing how brave all these anonymous mouths are. Cowards all.


  377. Bruce

    Cowards all.

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

    Remember think: “PHIL SPECTOR”

    Anyone that joins the Greater Fellowship can find out who I am, I’m not hiding.


  378. I’m in the Greater Fellowship, I don’t know your name. Just use it. Hasn’t your inner search brought you any inner courage?

    Remember, think asshole.


  379. Bruce

    I’m in the Greater Fellowship, I don’t know your name. Just use it. Hasn’t your inner search brought you any inner courage?

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

    Phil Spector…

    http://greaterfellowship.ning.com/main/search/search?q=graduates

    Genius.


  380. Graduate, Greg (I’m not hiding) Goodwin,

    How was it YOU left the school? Tell us YOUR story. And please don’t leave out the pertinent details, we’re all waiting with baited breath.


  381. Bruce 378 “PHIL SPECTOR”

    Graduate, G (I’m not hiding) G,

    How was it YOU left the school? Tell us YOUR story. And please don’t leave out the pertinent details, we’re all waiting with baited breath.

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

    I received a phone call one day from a Mildred Smith(?) and she said, “You’re out of the school.” This was precipitated by the fact that I hadn’t paid them any money or contacted anyone in several months. Hardly an emotional event.


  382. And your “history” in the school? Aren’t you leaving out some of the more lurid details?


  383. Bruce

    And your “history” in the school? Aren’t you leaving out some of the more lurid details?

    *********

    I’ll tell my lurid details you tell yours…


  384. Let’s just say that I have a better understanding now for your shitty comment to Nika, and you general disdain for women. Very courageous.


  385. Bruce

    Let’s just say that I have a better understanding now for your shitty comment to Nika, and you general disdain for women. Very courageous.

    ******

    And I understand why you’re a cringing little whiner, a permanent psychological basket case, who hasn’t got the balls to settle up with Bob.

    If you want to settle up with me I’ll be glad to meet you and work it out.


  386. Very good Greg, now we’re seeing you.


  387. “Let me not to the
    marriage of true minds admit impediment,
    love is not love, which alters when it alteration finds,
    nor bends with the remover to remove. ”
    Will Shakespeare.
    for Nika , Bruce , Greg and All the rest of us! In this cyber boat.
    If it can become something else then it wasnt love to begin with.
    Cy.


  388. Bruce

    Very good Greg, now we’re seeing you.

    ********

    The last thing you’ll see is the real me.


  389. Surely you’re not threatening me.


  390. ding ding seconds out.


  391. go to neutral corners.


  392. Bruce and Graduates,

    You guys need to ask the Sheik for a special little blog window all your own: didn’t you guys see Whalerider’s post about the Mars retrograde thing… Comeon… HC stops posting and you guys start… waz up! Read my rap and laugh a little.

    :)


  393. Cyclops ~

    Oh yeah!

    I’m sure if they had quoted Shakespeare Mike Tyson
    would not have done the Van Gogh on that other guy:
    what are you doing in the ring? You can only see one person at a time anyway.

    :)


  394. 336 Howard Carter

    To Siddiq

    Unoanimo is not a former student; he is a current student.

    __________________________

    You guys will have to do better than that: my buttons don’t do the ‘hair trigger thing’ anymore, particularly in here.

    Word!

    Remember, something bright, floral, not too casual, we cannot guarantee three piece suit wearers will be seen through the smoke grenades and tear gas; while due to the close proximity to Richard’s Ranch we will assume all dark bodies to be cattle or hay bales. On top of the winery is where we’ll be landing and taking off… see you up there.


  395. Here:

    Bruce = 1, Graduate = 1

    Visit Rude Argument on Greater Fellowship for even more dazzling displays of rhetorical pyrotechnics as we explore mankind’s deepest questions.


  396. on June 27, 2007 at 1:47 am Laughing Love

    To Traveler (Nika).

    Congratulations.

    Remain conscious of avoiding becoming superstitious.

    The definition of superstition is:

    1. An irrational belief that an object, action, or circumstance not logically related to a course of events influences its outcome.
    2. A belief, practice, or rite irrationally maintained by ignorance of the laws of nature or by faith in magic or chance.
    3. A fearful or abject state of mind resulting from such ignorance or irrationality.
    4. Idolatry.
    [Middle English supersticion, from Old French superstition, from Latin superstitiō, superstitiōn-, from superstes, superstit-, standing over.]

    The overt threats members endure relative to leaving the school are entirely impotent and filled with old-fashioned superstitious notions.

    No one knows any more than you do about life. No one.

    LL


  397. Bruce,

    I’ve known you for a long, long time albeit at a distance. I was kind of fascinated by your persona and always put off by (what I perceived) the negativity and the profanity. I couldn’t get past those things.

    Now, through the blog, I’ve come to have a soft spot in my heart for you. I see the other sides of Bruce and I like what I see.

    So, keep on doing what you’re doing and try not to get sucked into the Graduates deal (ok, I guess you could see that as a “photograph” but it’s not, really, just a suggestion from a new (old) friend.


  398. on June 27, 2007 at 2:43 am We Were There

    Laughing Love

    Every time I see your handle, I smile.

    What a gift.

    Thanks.


  399. Unamino–“Remember, something bright, floral, not too casual, we cannot guarantee three piece suit wearers will be seen through the smoke grenades and tear gas; while due to the close proximity to Richard’s Ranch we will assume all dark bodies to be cattle or hay bales. On top of the winery is where we’ll be landing and taking off… see you up there.”

    You lost me, what are you talking about? Any chance of a plain response?


  400. 395

    Thank you.


  401. Let’s not all inner consider over a little psychological bloodshed, I’m sure Bruce is nursing his permanently bruised self-worth with the usual drugs and alcohol. It’s almost safe for the lesser, more moderate egos to reemerge and exercise their usual gaiety. If I know this crowd (Bruce’s friends regardless how sloppy and evil he gets) they are appealing to the Sheik to ban me and so likely Bruce will be back babbling “bullshit” one post at a time at the rate of ten a day with impunity. Come on out, the ‘scene’ is over.

    http://fofgraduates.wordpress.com/2007/06/08/graduates-of-the-fellowship-of-friends/


  402. on June 27, 2007 at 5:11 am for the Best_1

    To Nika :

    “Be a person of observation and judgment. Such a person rules things, not they him.
    He quickly plumbs the most profound depths. He knows how to get at the anatomy of character. On seeing a person he understands him and judges his inmost nature. From a few observations he deciphers what is most hidden. Keen observation, subtle insight, judicious inference – with this he discovers, notices, grasps, and comprehends everything.”
    Balthasar Gracian.

    This is my present for your departure; I have no worries about your future.

    Aline


  403. on June 27, 2007 at 5:14 am Purchasing awakening

    Hi everyone,
    I was looking through my old e-mails from 2004 and 2005 and was shocked to see that I was actually getting 1 to 3 solicitation e-mails from Fellowship EVERY DAY prompting me to buy something. Bookmarks, ruffle tickets, trips with Beloved Teacher, dinners, “Thoughts” publications, items for auctions etc etc. Buy, buy, buy! Log on on Propylaia NOW!!!
    I recall someone said on this blog (long ago) that there is no pressure in the school to buy things or events, or something like that. Boy, I wish this person looked in my mailbox! I don’t get as much commercial spam from anyone else… I think even used car dealerships pale in comparison with agressive sales tactics used in FOF…
    Is there ever enough? How much money does one need to extract from his students in exchange for his teaching? What are we paying for? Where all this money go?

    Here’s some excerpts from solicitation e-mails :

    THE PREMIERE $25,000 HOLIDAY DINNER
    Christmas Day is approaching…..the day Robert is to announce the CHOSEN ONE.
    We had 290 Students today receive gift certificates to Robert’s “Premiere $25,000 Holiday Dinner”
    We need 710 more responses by FRIDAY CHRISTMAS EVE!!!!! 1000 X $25 = $25,000
    Go to Propylaia NOW!
    ***********************************
    Incredible
    500 Gift Certificates were sold since our announcement at the meeting yesterday.
    How wonderful for Robert and for us.
    World 12…….
    Let us sell the next 500 by Christmas Eve.
    ***********************************
    You must ask for what you really want!
    Method of payment:
    Send a dollars check made out to FOF to PO BOX 100, Oregon House, CA 95962.
    Enter your credit card information on our web site.
    Everything you see around you will one day disappear, except Love, which lasts forever. Hafiz
    Remember I love you, now and forever. Robert
    ***********************************
    WE ARE NOW AT
    $85,000!
    This leaves only $55,000 to be raised for Robert’s Crystallization Gift, so if you did not have time to contribute last week you can go to https://www.propylaia.org now to enter your gift amount.
    ************************************
    On May 12 it will be Robert’s Birthday!
    This is our Precious gift to him for this year 2005 – with love!
    30 diamonds – 30 work I’s – $30,000 to be raised by May 12th!
    “God will ask at the ressurection: Did ou bring me a present? Did you forget? Did you think you wouldn’t see me?” Rumi
    ***********************************
    WE ARE ALMOST THERE…..200 MORE NAMES TO GO….
    BUY ANOTHER TICKET!
    ***********************************
    BUY ONE MORE TICKET – WE ARE ALL THE WINNERS – 100 TICKETS TO GO……
    ***********************************
    Better late than never! Some of you perhaps missed the email about Robert’s Birthday Present!
    Go to propylaia and let’s surprise him with more birthday gifts before he leaves Apollo next week!
    ***********************************
    The price for this special holiday dinner is $1000.,
    or $500 plus four full-day vouchers.
    ***********************************
    “Now is the time to take what the Gods allow.” Robert
    There are still 2 more days to contribute!
    Purchase a $44 or $12 bookmark and we will enter you in the Prize Drawing.
    *********************************
    Have you bought your tickets for the Holiday Prize Drawing?
    We have only raised $5000 by now!
    Looking forward to see you at the Live Auction,
    Apollo Auction Team
    ********************************
    Dear Friends,
    Did you know that 80 students have already purchased a Birthday bookmark, which automatically enters them in the Birthday Prize Drawing?
    We still need another 280 purchases to reach our goal of $17,000.
    Have you bought your bookmark? Have you considered purchasing another one?
    ********************************
    Maharajah Tent Inaugural Dinner – $300/ $150
    The Imperishable Stars Dinner – $250
    Turkish Tea in the Oasis – $150
    Sunrise Breakfast with Robert – $250
    High Tea at your home with Robert – $4,400
    Reception at your home with Robert – $4,400
    Breakfast at your home with Robert – $4,400
    Dinner at your home with Robert – $8,800
    Family photo with Robert – $150
    Apollo D’Oro Parking Space – $750/ $400
    Galleria Parking Space – $650/ $400
    ********************************
    Our Beloved Teacher will move with presence across the globe once again
    this time in September to Tel Aviv, Florence and London.
    Please see Propylaia for Early Reservation and Couples Discount
    until September 1st.
    ********************************
    38 years of meeting C Influence,
    38 years of dedication.
    Would you all like to add a $38.00 contribution to your card, it would then become a gift in a Love message?
    *********************************
    AND JUST REMEMBER:
    I LOVE YOU, NOW AND FOREVER. Robert


  404. Graduates:

    You’ve been trying to “push our buttons” for some time now. To what end? Are you trying to learn? Or merely looking for some followers, perhaps?

    As much as you seem to seek it, I see no signs of a conspiracy here. I think only you can banish yourself from this discussion.

    Lighten up a bit, okay?


  405. on June 27, 2007 at 5:54 am Simple truth

    Bruce and Graduates, calm down. you are identified with to have right. but remember that our thinking is subjective, only the knowledge from schools is objective.

    “The Lower self wants to fight”

    “It is urgent for us to know the devil’s unscrupulous tricks against us.” [The Philokalia, Anthony the Great]

    “All that Seth has said is false.” [Egyptian Legends, Contendings of Horus and Seth]

    “Fight Satan by opposing his thoughts.” [The Philokalia, Nicephorus the Solitary]

    “Do not give yourself over to your angry thoughts so as to fight in your mind with the one who has vexed you.” [The Philokalia, Evagrios the Solitary]

    “You are sinful if you are in constant argument.” [Mohammed]“Sin” means sleep. You are asleep if you are quarrelling with the lower self.

    “The devil’s aim is to tire you, to trip you, to make you fall.” [Ibn Arabi]


  406. Tim Campion 401

    Graduates:

    You’ve been trying to “push our buttons” for some time now.

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

    “Our” buttons? You picture yourself as part of some monolithic mentality? You need to rethink that attitude.

    I have an opinion and I express it, if it pushes the collective button too bad. That is not enough of a crime to cause me to self-censor. I’m not here to win friends and collect invitations for dinner.


  407. Students,
    Please make your April donation.The School is running on reserve and there is not enough money to fund our Teacher’s next trip to Egypt.

    Use Sequence for help:

    “Don’t” “Ask” Why” Just” “Pay” “Now”!


  408. Duplicate, deleted. For some reason my spam filter picked up on this one, sorry Cyclops. Glad you managed to squeeze one through. — ES


  409. hi just trying something, ive written a longer post, which I’ve tried to post a number of times with no result.


  410. Well that worked so lets see!
    “Emancipate yourself from mental slavery,
    none but ourself can free our mind” from Redemption song. By Marley. Lion of Jamaica.
    391 unoanimo. Please wait until youre no longer stoned before posting. What happened to you was it the last lsd trip that you never returned from. Its mercury and not mars thats retrograde like your intelligence. Re Iron Mike if Islam could make his lion lie down with his lamb while he was inside, why not Shakespeare. It works for me.
    Van Gogh is “supposed” to have cut his OWN ear off, Razclat, Bambaclat.
    My one Good eye can see better that your two Crossed eyes. By the way I have enjoyed many of your previous posts thanks.
    400.Aline very nice thanks.
    402. Simple truth. also very nice thank you for these.
    404. Very funny. minimised only by the underlying irony.
    BRUCE and GRADUATES thank you both Ive learned from each of you at times. And the Othello Iago exchange never fails to fascinate. love to you both.
    Jah Rastafari. cy.


  411. Hello and good morning Vietnam:

    Siddiq ~

    You wrote ~ “You lost me, what are you talking about? Any chance of a plain response?”
    _________________________

    Good grief, are you riding a tortoise or what? Go back and reread my last 4-5 posts, where I advise the wearing of “something bright, floral, not too formal”, in one of them…

    It’s a joke, usually not serious enough to ask for clarification if you don’t get it or can’t figure it out, unless of course you’re a student of The Fellowship of Friends, who is so desperate for truth that he or she is needing even prose-jokes clarified and keyed…

    Although, as the end of all this fluff you may actually discover that the idea of ‘a joke’ can be stretched way further than your traditional rubber band or Trojan (yes, that is possibly the birth of another FoF def jam line; it’s all riding on how much karmic make believe I experience in here between now and well, now later.)

    Lighten up

    BTW… A plain response to what?

    Since Whalerider has not come around to intentionally losing his toaster, I may have to ask Laura or Graduates if they might put theirs on the street corner and look the other way… Your silly redundancy is truly a challenge to readers and those who are trying to assist you both (yourself and HC) to just comeon and let go of those utters and live a little;

    BTW, the supermarkets sell milk by the gallon, free of mother-tax and surcharge.

    Freud would, unfortunately, be proud of both of you; makes his dissertation less confronting and more in sink with the automatic probabilities of humankind and his extraordinary wiseacres of beaches in Death Valley.

    I love you both though; often, there is certainly more opportunity in the entity who is willing to expose themselves, no matter their ‘music played’, tongue tied or tongue tuned, so to speak,

    the willingness to expose your innards is at best, subconsciously loving to Evolution herself; she’s watching all of us, naked and freezing, warm and freezing…one and all.

    The soul has no vocal chords and something will certainly sing with all of you confused fence-sitters, all the way to another singing and into that silence you’re avoiding by talking too much and doing too little for your crystallizing comfy zones.
    ____________________________

    Devil’s Dictionary addition ~

    Feminine Dominance:

    A note from the Author (not named Arthur) ~

    (Albeit the grandest, Grand Poo-ba Fred Flintstone Pigeon Hole in possession of The Fellowship of Friends, second only to “Its the moon, It’s the Play and It’s the will of C-Influence and That would be mechanical”;
    the physical, psychological and psychically mush producing hierarchal hearsay and grand inner assuming literal and grammatical phenomenon called ‘Feminine Dominance’ does not exist on Wikipedia or Encyclopedia Britannica;

    yet, is what we wiseacre annihilators like to term as

    “Up and Coming towers of babel, made of conveniently stacked playing cards, upon such a foundation that is joyfully, due to our funds being needed elsewhere, built upon a tract of ground, in what some in Arkansas call ‘Tornado Heaven.)

    Thus, we take a ‘quick’ and seemingly painless look at this pigeon hole, not to be confused with the other pigeon hole that at various unpredictable periods during its daily jaunts
    in various public parks throughout the relatively civilized world, causes the ordinary ‘stroller’ to look heavenwards, not for signs in the clouds, gods, angels or to show others that they themselves are somewhat confident of a higher will than those who can hear worms underground, rather, to be sure that ‘the practical pigeon hole’ is not situated plumb above their unprotected shoulders and scalp.

    So, Feminine Dominance is herein defined, as far as the Fellowship of Friends uses it as a first response mechanism, not unlike teenagers learn in their first years of ‘budding glandular juices’ to, so to say, ‘make their stand’ by ironically ‘posting their flags’ in their parent’s houses, calling their room, ‘mine’ and ‘MySpace’, well, ‘my space’…

    thusly the birth of ‘freedom’ is spun through territorial juxtapositions and glandular predispositions, both, unknowingly the same thing.

    Now, really, Feminine Dominance ~

    A term to connote that a particular physical action or deed that entertains one’s cerebellum, either by way of suggestion from a friend or stranger, would be firstly ‘inner considering, which has its ‘effect’ in producing a slave action to the false master, aka, Feminine Dominance, or,

    do what mother told you is best, or what is expected of a good little girl or boy, i.e., clean underwear, I’ll do the dishes honey (prior to the actual sweetness), taking out the trash because she looked at you that special way, putting down the toilet lid, opening doors for old people, assisting old people in any way, kissing a child’s ouchy, picking up after the Super Bowl party (female role), vacuuming an already perfectly clean carpet before guests arrive, buying a new car before your mother in law arrives (or visa versa, depending on what it is that you need, praise or a raise?), picking up something that another has dropped and not recognized (save chewing tobacco cups),
    asking your sister whether she likes your new girlfriend and if not ‘going for another’, wiping your feet before going outdoors, putting things in order after your meal at a restaurant so the waitress and dishwasher will have less to do and the proverbial opening the door for ‘her’…

    So, outside of listing a ‘Masculine Dominance’ list, which to this day does not exist as a reconciling force theory in the Fellowship of Friends hierarchy (can’t have two false gods, that’s a bit too confusing for Christians psyches with money and satellite features),

    may or may not suggest that the world as we know it in terms of opposites holding things in balance is truly about to hear the ‘Angels’ Trumpet’;

    you kinda get the picture of where its headed: in a nut shell, its basically a framework of hierarchical busy-body-ness that is labeling anything that could possibly create a ‘shock’ for another person’s ‘Little World’ order, that may disrupt its narcissistic perusal of the pond’s edge reflection and does not serve someone’s else’s call for great efforts to be made to keep his BIG POND, still as a feather on the nose of a dead fox.

    Now, we see there is an impulse, a deed, a deed that reveals another’s unwillingness or willingness to join in another’s automatic circumstance that shows their vulnerably, which, in turn shows the partaker of said Feminine Dominance, vulnerability too;

    which, of course, in a hierarchy, is never thought of as ‘intentional insincerity so to create a circumstance of mechanical balance and external considering’, nope, we can’t get too conscious when taking about pigeon holes…
    particularly ‘conscious pigeon holes’, the type that bypass even the Absolute’s Law of automatic bowel movements, unbeknown to the pigeon’s psyche or conscience.

    According to the Fellowship of Friends, when ever Robert Burton says its Feminine Dominance its a sign of mechanical-ness, or weakness; yet as our panel of one gets closer to the actual tap rooted-ness of this term,

    said ‘panel of one’ finds that it has come from a person who happens to be of saturnine, shall we say, descent;

    furthermore he, Robert Burton, most certainly the most wiseacre producing character of this term Feminine Dominance, considers ‘himself’ a ‘herself’, thus calling himself, quote ” A goddess in a man’s body.”

    Now, coupled with the corresponding objective feature belonging to said ‘Saturnine’ is the phenomenon called dominance, a psychological and wholly automatic disposition to take immediate charge of a group of pretty much any anybodies, whether they know it or not, and hence, dominate those said ‘anybodies’ as similar to the metaphorical ‘pointing at’ concerning the planet Saturn and her many satellites…

    Due to spacial concerns, we will not get into the corresponding automatic function of satellites who, at an early age, somehow get it into their heads that they are not planets too, but rather, being caught up in another’s gravitational field have become somewhat hypnotized into saying to themselves, I need a daddy, I need a mommy;

    so, in this ‘circumstance stance’ they remain ‘in orbit’, often far after the planet has been blown apart by Darth Vader’s Deathstar, out of what we, of one, would call ‘proximity hypnotic habit of habitat’.

    Now, we take Feminine Dominance, throughly spun like a extra large Italian pizza, by The Fellowship of Friends, by their hierarchal leader, Robert Burton, who is a ‘goddess with dominance as ‘her’ chief feature or automatic weakness prescribed outwardly to other prescriber’s of their own automatic weaknesses as thinking themselves rightly due to be his holla-hoops or satellites,

    spinning themselves rather dizzy, never closing their eyes to gain something beyond ‘back-car-seat-sickness’ for fear of being called ‘asleep’ and wonder….

    Hummmmm… Feminine Dominance = Bad, unconscious, when its not connected to the Third Line or the second line of Robert Burton or The Fellowship of Friends, whose self-prescribed leader and followers are curiously being lead by a ‘goddess with dominance’…

    For sake of admitting that we here at the corporation, ‘I am only One Person’, most often do leave out certain disclaimers, that might make such a long juggling of words look rather not so circus-awe-like;

    we would like to break this possible habit and say that all this may only be a coincidence,

    that the definition and instruction of the idea of Feminine Dominance for the past 35+ years has been equated with Bad & Bottom of Barrel Sleep, for gestures and thoughts outside the Fellowship of Friends,

    yet those very same automatic impulses, gestures and thoughts inside the Fellowship of Friends (so long as they are serving the ‘dominate goddess’, are conscious, tidy, god-pleasing and just,

    down right enough to make Ouspensky do a little Russian polka in his grave, just for you,

    the person who now knows for sure that right work of Feminine Dominance is to only apply its practices towards Saturnine, dominant humans, who believe themselves to be goddesses incarnate in male bodies of females that call themselves ‘cowboy names’.

    ___________________________

    Love to you all.


  412. on June 27, 2007 at 12:55 pm Another Name

    For all my friends and non friends.
    The sun, the moon
    The opiniated and the non-opiniated
    All.

    “I have an opinion and I express it, if it pushes the collective button too bad. That is not enough of a crime to cause me to self-censor. I’m not here to win friends and collect invitations for dinner.” Graduates

    Why are you here? That is a very good question?
    Why are you here?
    When you are dying what will you answer yourself?
    Or will you ask for morphine as many friends have or their friends who made sure that their friends were receiving morphine when they were dying and not ask yourself/ themself anything?
    Is it to hard to face the pain of what is?
    Are you able to sit with your own pain or will you still give good advices?
    Can you sit with your friend or non friend pain?
    What will you ask yourself at the end of your life?
    Good question.

    Love to all of you


  413. Hello hello, how’s it going?

    Would you guys be able to tell me when it would be best time to start a new thread as I can’t really tell, my connection is fairly fast so I usually don’t face any problems when viewing the blog. For the past two discussions it was around 600 posts but some of you were complaining a bit by that point so please tell me what number of posts is best. Cheers.


  414. Hi Sheik, seems to me somewhere between 400 and 500 posts it slows the loading of the page down. but it depends on how many one-liners there are too!

    Thanks!


  415. #403 Purchase Awakening

    Too bad this shameless commercialism is hidden from prospective students. It’s just disgusting. Thanks for taking the trouble to post these.


  416. Accountant 407: Use Sequence for help:
    “Don’t” “Ask” Why” Just” “Pay” “Now”!

    loved this one.


  417. 403. Purchase Awakening. Thank you! I am almost embarassed at this bare assed theft.
    415. Vena. I wonder if there is any way we could make it less hidden?
    Any bright Ideas Anyone. Cy.


  418. Like many readers these days I scan quickly through the blog once every couple of days to see what’s happening, jumping over the froth from the small group who dominate proceedings these days (Bruce, Graduate, Unoanimo etc), just in case there’s someting worth reading.

    So thanks Purchasing Awakening (403). I’ve been “out” for nine months now and in some respects the FOF seems a million miles away. It was salutary to be reminded of the utterly ghastly, frantic, phony fundraising activities. The style of writing of those announcements is enough to make one’s stomach turn. Wow, I’m so glad to be away from all that!

    cheers RN


  419. on June 27, 2007 at 4:45 pm Ames Gilbert

    To Purchase awakening (#13-403)
    Thanks for the high state of stupefied disbelief!

    To answer your questions in order: no, there is never enough (you skipped a thousand e-mails over two years, it seems…), Burton’s greed feature is going for some record, so “all he can get” answers the second, to the third, “very little, and what little there is, is solely because of your own efforts”. That leaves, “what are we paying for and where does all this money go?” That’s a hard accounting question. The month before I left, a Burton cell phone bill from one of his cars was over $4,000, and the FoF couldn’t pay it; so Burton just called around and had students put it on their credit card. How does an accountant deal with this? What column in the books does this go on? I’d guess that much of the accounting of the FoF is fraudulent to bypass the requirements of the canons and the intent of non-profit organizations (that they are specifically required to avoid benefit to the organizers). There may be even two sets of books… But to answer in terms of the broad picture, say ten percent for necessary overhead, ten percent for salaries, and the rest to indulging Burton’s every whim and fantasy. Just the costs of maintaining and transporting the on-demand sperm bank has to be over a million a year.

    The new FoF website has made it crystal clear that it is now officially “The Church of Robert Burton”, complete with new religion. There is the hook of the Fourth Way link when doing a Google search, in that there are redirects to the new organization; too valuable to abandon. Reminds me strongly of Pat Robertson (700 club) and the incessant combination of demands and threats to spiritual welfare, with a good dose of the hucksterism of the Bakkers (before their fall from grace) thrown in. I mean, look at this: “30 diamonds – 30 work I’s – $30,000 to be raised by May 12th! “God will ask at the resurrection: Did you bring me a present? Did you forget? Did you think you wouldn’t see me?” Rumi.
    —For crying (and laughing) out loud!

    Please carry on posting more of this stuff. For example, regarding, “ Christmas Day is approaching… the day Robert is to announce the CHOSEN ONE” begs for “the rest of the story”, don’t you agree?

    Thanks again!
    Ames


  420. on June 27, 2007 at 4:54 pm Howard Carter

    To unoanimo – 411

    Inner considering is a RESULT of F. D.
    F.D.is a much broader, more invisible, domain.
    Inner considering can be viewed and studied from the second state.
    F.D.,in anything but its most banal forms, can only be observed from the third state.
    This is the reason several bloggers deny its exstence.


  421. #403 Purchasing Awakening.

    Thanks for taking the time to present the ugly facts.
    Contrary to false claims by Siddiq that FOF members are not reading the blog, well, they are and whats more many are still being slowly awakened to the reality of the FOF and Burton by continued exposure to it.
    Some recent changes that can be directly attributed to it’s influence are the relaxing of the no fraternising with ex members ‘Rule’ , the freedom to explore other ‘Teachings’ without being thrown out for it and as a measure of how desperate the FOf is becoming at the loss of members/revenue, many students who were backing out of the Fof by saying they cannot afford the donations are being given huge ‘Discounts’ and having there outstanding back payments waived just to keep them in. Also the unprecedented step has been taken of actually calling members who have left recently ( those that just let their subscription expire without any formal departure) to entice them to rejoin again with the dropping of outstanding backpayments.


  422. Post 403, Purchase Awakening —

    I’m nearly speechless at the level of nonsense going on in the Fellowship these days. An old friend Michael S once said that he didn’t like Renaissance because it was just a playground for Robert’s features, but his shameless greed has reached epic proportions. Wow. I wish this BS were all out in the open when I first joined. I think I could have started to trust my own judgment a little sooner. It would have been easier to see that this corrupt organization never deserved either my money nor the “giving up of my self-will.” That’s something that should only be given to an organization one can trust, temporarily, if at all. I truly feel sorry for anyone who’s still a member. New members have only themselves to blame since this is all out in the open. Older members, I’m afraid, are like frogs in a pot — the old saying that if you throw a frog in boiling water it will jump out, but if you put it in cool water and slowly bring it to a boil, it will stay in and die. I guess the water was cooler when I joined, but for God’s sake, it’s boiling people!


  423. 422

    Starving the wolf.


  424. on June 27, 2007 at 5:37 pm Purchasing awakening

    “BUY! BUY! BUY! More effort! More effort!” – that should be true FOF slogan…
    Here’s some more e-mails for your reading pleasure. (2004-2005). This kind of stuff comes to our mail boxes every day, often 2-3 a day… Notice the last message from RVW – it speaks of interesting separation between “Robert’s funds” and the rest of the funds… Which Robert’s funds? It’s all the funds he makes from his dinners, meetings, travels, breakfasts and teas… That’s “his personal money”. These days it means mostly 2 events a day, 2 meetings a week… That adds up to a nice personal fund!
    But wait a second… I thought the orgnization was NON PROFIT… So which personal fund are we talking about? And I bet he doesn’t pay any taxes on his personal funds… Hmmm…

    We raised $11,000 in the Crystallization 2004
    Jewelry Prize Drawing! Please see winners below:
    **************************************
    You can pay in up to FIVE TIME PAYMENTS. This is on the website when you “check out” – it gives you the opportunity to sign up for all of the events with the possibility to pay over 5 months. Robert has asked that each person try to sign up for at least two events. Remember – there is standing room!
    *************************************
    Do you see your name below?
    Do you see your friend’s name?
    Wouldn’t you like to go to to Vienna and be with your friends and your teacher?
    *************************************
    There are 206 students that live less than 1000 km from Vienna. 71 are signed up to go.
    Why don’t the rest of you get on a bus and go! Sign up on Propylaia….
    *************************************
    1,000 Tickets To The Vienna Opera House
    With Only 72 Left For Sale…Not Bad…Want One?
    Did you know that we bought over 1,000 tickets
    to fill the Vienna Opera House with students
    for Robert’s arrival June 7 – June 14?
    Let’s finish this octave…72 tickets to go…
    **************************************
    We (RVW) face a large payment of $290,000 due at the end of this month – our line of credit that must be repaid in full at the end of June. This year our aim has been to raise the full amount through our own efforts and to pay the loan
    off permanently. We have already paid off one half of this amount and are trying to raise the remaining $145,000 over the next two weeks. We are within $30,000 of our goal. If we are short, the Fellowship will need to pay this on our behalf.
    12 DAYS to raise $30,000 in sales from the Apollo community…
    Every order brings us closer to our goal of meeting our own needs without drawing on the energy and resources of our Teacher.
    So an RVW wine purchase not only helps build Apollo today by not diverting Robert’s funds – it also helps build Apollo in the future by improving our credit rating!
    ****************************************


  425. Another Name 412

    “I have an opinion and I express it, if it pushes the collective button too bad. That is not enough of a crime to cause me to self-censor. I’m not here to win friends and collect invitations for dinner.” Graduates

    Why are you here?

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

    This is a question you should be asking yourself and take it a step further: are you really here?

    Failure is not knowing why you continue to live.


  426. Bruce 424

    422

    Starving the wolf.

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

    The same wolf you fed plenty (far more than many of us), so don’t pretend your not culpable in the involution of that situation.

    I doubt your old buddy is going hungry.


  427. Cuming Soon!

    Maharajah Tent Inaugural Dinner and Blowjob – $440
    The Imperishable Stars Fecal Face Dinner – $440
    Turkish Titillation Tea in the Oasis – $144
    Sunrise Breakfast Blowjob from Robert – $244
    Get High Tea at your home with 2 Friends and Robert – $3,440
    Semen Reception at your home with 4+ Friends and Robert – $4,400
    Breakfast Blowjob at your home from Robert – $2,440
    All Night Debauchery Dinner at your home w/ Robert and 4+ Friends – $8,800 (Viagra not included)
    Nude Family photo with Robert – $144 (w/ erection add $25)
    Apollo D’Oro Golden Shower- $440head/ $540 mouth
    Grand All night Marquis de Sade Russian Romp at Galleria – $10,4400
    *********************************
    Our Beloved Teacher will splooge with presence across the globe once again this time in September to Tel Aviv, Florence and London.
    Please see Prophylacticia
    for Early Reservation and Couples Discount
    Special discount for underage boys.
    until September 1st.
    ********************************
    38 years of sucking for C Influence,
    38 years of dedication to lust
    Would you all like to add a $38.00 contribution to your card, it would then become a gift in a Love message?
    *********************************
    AND JUST REMEMBER:
    I LOVE YOUR PENIS, NOW AND FOREVER. Robert


  428. on June 27, 2007 at 6:05 pm Ames Gilbert

    To the fence-sitters:
    If the FOF has no real graduates, and no path to graduate or become initiated, then it is not a true school, neither is there a true teacher. The ‘students’, if they stay, are perpetually stuck. If there was a teacher who has lost his way or credentials, the outcome is the same. Note that this doesn’t mean that the FOF is not an ‘accidental’ school that produces real graduates from time to time…

    As we know, most do eventually leave. How prepared have they been to continue? Not very, it is a process subject to the law of accident. Some recover quickly, some much more slowly, some never recover their center. I see no evidence of a preparation process, meaning there is no correct third force—if one’s aim is to graduate. There is plenty if one’s aim is to stay and “die in the school”.

    From the point of view of the institution of the Fellowship of Friends, it is quite plain that the problems of Burton cannot be solved. There are no conceivable rules or by-laws (supposing the members of the board of directors ever had the guts to do their jobs) that would curb Burton, because his disease has no cure. It is not mere weakness, but an incurable pathology.

    It has taken the wrongly placed energies of all of us, through all the years, to get to this place. What do I mean by that? Obviously, if everyone withdrew their energy from Burton today, tonight he would just be a sad old man muttering to himself in an abandoned Galleria, or whatever he chooses to call it. That is, he would have nothing, no personal power, no institutional power, no way to make a living, nothing to feed on, literally or metaphorically. He probably would have difficulty finding an egg and boiling it for his supper, and certainly once the eggs ran out, he would starve. Requiem for a demi-god. If he had not been given energy unconditionally from the beginning, he might have learned to find a some way of paying his way on the planet; he would likely have had an incredible amount of San Francisco bathhouse sex, and….

    But—he did attract the right kind of people for his purpose, they gave their energy unconditionally, he had no interest in empowering them (teaching them to take back their energy and use it wisely for themselves), and he was enthralled by that power. Make no mistake; in offering themselves as slaves, his enablers also enslaved him. I can already hear the protests, but the facts are plain; he does not empower his students, rather he does everything to make them permanently dependent on him, and he cannot give up his addictions.

    He has been given enough benefit of the doubt, the time has been far more than adequate, the experiment that has used up half of some people’s lives is fraudulent, the man behind the curtains is a sham. One declaration relayed to me by Peter Bishop, by Burton’s specific request, “Conscience is just a collection of “I”s; anyone accumulating too much material there should leave the school”, tells it all (Note: I have the tape, literally; I recorded the conversation. Advice to all people in the FOF interested in graduation: carry recorders—discreetly, of course— so you can review important conversations and “meetings” later, in a more objective mode, outside the prevailing “belief field”).

    So, he feeds and thrives on the power of his students. Gurdjieff called this power, haverno, the power of kingship. He postulated that power was actually material, very fine, but material. Who knows, it really doesn’t matter. What matters is that it is transferable. The relevance is that those who have not INDIVIDUATED, that is, most of us, are only too willing to give it up. This is a mechanical process. And, there are always those who are willing to receive it and collect it; that is equally mechanical. Please understand, it is equally mechanical. Gurdjieff by most accounts tried to teach people to individuate, that is, work to arrive at a place where they neither gave up their birthright of power, nor sought to accumulate it. This is NOT taught in the FOF, in theory or practice, ergo it is not a ‘school’, at least not for adults seeking to individuate/graduate.

    From time to time the question has arisen, do students ‘storm the Bastille’? No, wrong triad, and there is nothing there worth the effort (after debts have been paid), as has been pointed out before. Why get tangled up in the American legal system for years and make lawyers even richer? I’d bet that Abe has a controlling interest in it all anyway, hidden in his back pocket, claims that he is a ‘pro bono’ lawyer not withstanding. Let the dead bury their dead.

    No, you have to storm your inner Bastille. You have to withdraw energy from Burton, you have to withdraw the adulation, the uncritical admiration. You have to experiment, question, take back the power you handed over so uncritically. You have to stop believing his stories; he only tells you what you want to hear, he is a genius at divining your weaknesses. You have to stop giving him your power, your body (if you do), and you have to stop giving him your money. Start living in such a way that you have your own worthwhile story to tell. If you have energy to spare, try to encourage other less empowered students to stand up on their own feet.

    Then comes harder work, the way I see it. To disengage completely from Burton, you have to acknowledge your complicity, your previous engagement. You have to tell the truth to yourself to find out where you are; if you don’t know where you are, you are unlikely to get to your destination, even if you did have a map. Then you have to learn to forgive yourself, learn to appreciate yourself, learn to love yourself, exactly as you are. If you start to do that, you can start to forgive Burton. If enough of us arrive at that place, then maybe there is a chance of redemption if and when he asks for help. There are no guarantees in the grown-up world. Implicit in taking your own power back is hazard. You are ‘standing at the edge’ of the unconditioned world where there are vast possibilities and commensurate risk. You are rejecting the safe world where everything appears to be ordered and results supposedly guaranteed (do as I say, make your payments, and you will be saved), but which also means the death of possibilities.

    Best of luck, and love to you all,
    Ames

    P.S. The jobs of ‘Teacher’ or ‘guru’ or even ‘professional angle–giver’ have to be some of the most dangerous occupations around. Truly hazardous to one’s inner welfare! We have ring–side seats where we can observe the truth of the saying, “Power attracts the corruptible; absolute power attracts the absolutely corruptible” in both politics and spirituality, and the chance to learn some powerful lessons.


  429. 427 Whalerider.
    Its strange how sometimes another person can actualise ideas for one. spot on. Cy.


  430. Dinner with RB $1100

    Monthly donation $800

    Special Donation $1500

    Spring Donation $2000

    Shaking the cobwebs out of your head and seeing what a sucker you have been-

    Priceless

    (all above prices may vary due to availability and length of…)


  431. Ames Gilbert 428

    From the point of view of the institution of the Fellowship of Friends, it is quite plain that the problems of Burton cannot be solved.

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

    The Burton problem is solving itself, here is a guy that sees esoteric teachings in the varying lengths of penises and the numbers of droppings depicted in cave paintings. He is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s and will fairly soon end up like Elizabeth Clair Prophet.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_Clare_Prophet#Final_years


  432. Dear Ames,
    Excellent post! (428)
    Thanks,
    Ryan.


  433. on June 27, 2007 at 7:19 pm Howard Carter

    Graduates – 307 ““You are a gift…” He is telling this guy that he owns his body and can take it at will and the guy believes it. Anyone else see something more than sick in this “conscious” relationship.”

    Graduates, this might be one of those Eureka! moments; you have touched the very core of things with the above statement.

    This is actually the way things are by my understanding. We don’t own our bodies; that’s one of the biggest myths mankind perpetrates on itself. Influence C owns them. I’m not necessarily dwelling on the context you mention, but not excluding it either. We don’t own our spouses, children, bank accounts, even our thoughts. Nothing belongs to us.

    The only thing we bring with us into this world is our states, and the only thing we depart with is our states. Hopefully in our earthly span we leave with better states than when we arrived. All the rest is grace, every moment
    and every activity. Having the “right” of how we spend our time here on earth is a grand illusion.

    When we join a school we are asked to give up the illusion that we own our bodies. We find our way into a school looking for awakening, but we are unaware of the payment. When the payment is presented to us, some balk at
    the ultimate cost. This is why awakening is called the Pearl of Great Price.

    And why shouldn’t it be costly if it guarantees us eternity? All pay differently but all pay the same; they are asked to give up their particular illusions; one of the main ones being that we own our bodies.

    It is all grace or the opposite of grace, often both; but the choice is not ours. Conscious Beings are the only ones who are qualified to serve as a go between for Influence C for those who are not awake. This applies to the FoF
    and its students; and Influence C, as I know them, do not miss the mark. They, after all, invented the mark.

    The methods used in our school to remove the illusions of students do not come from any person, teacher included, but from Influence C. People have every right to leave a school and resume the illusion that they own their bodies.

    But if they want to remain in and influence C is intent on lifting that veil, it’s a conflict they won’t win. I’m sorry if these statements offend anyone; it’s a reality that many have verified in our school, as well as in previous ones.


  434. 433

    That’s as sick as it gets.


  435. Howard Carter #433:

    “When we join a school we are asked to give up the illusion that we own our bodies….

    And why shouldn’t it be costly if it guarantees us eternity?”

    Wow. That was the most disturbed and disturbing post I’ve seen here yet. At least you’ve made it clear:

    You are quite profoundly delusional. If you ever succeed in getting out of the trap you’ve fallen into, you’re going to need lots of help from a skillful therapist….maybe lifetimes of help!

    Really, good luck.


  436. 433. Howard Carter.
    Do you personally work with this sacrifice of illusion?
    Or is it something you do vicariously? Cy


  437. Howard Carter #433

    I can accept as a theory that my body is a gift from higher forces to my soul, so as it can do what it needs to awaken, but where does it say our body is to be sacrificed to our teacher to satisfy his needs, let alone advance our evolution?

    For the latter part of the previous statement to stand a theory to be tested, you would have to explain: What is it exactly that is to be gained by students who are chosen by RB to be his sex partners? What are the criteria used for their particular choosing by RB? Are you really convinced that the primary, if not only motive in the activities is the advancement of the student’s awakening? Are you simply satisfied that the activities have been kept under wrap, for the most part, and that the students involved are, on average, apparently not going insane? May be any student who joins should be given your memento about “our body does not belong to us”, as a prepatory tool.

    I realize that two things could be equally true: “our bodies do not belong to us”, “our teacher is misusing the trust of his students”, but your post comes accross as a poor apology.


  438. ‘but the choice is not ours.concious beings are the only ones who are qualified to serve as a go between for influence C for those who are not awake.’

    I said it before and I’ll say it again.
    The warped,fundamentalist mindset represented by Howard Carter is no different from that of the Islamic extremist who blows himself and others to pieces in the name of Mohammed for the promise of a place in ‘Paradise’.

    If that happened to be the ‘form of the FOF you would do it tooj udging by the sentiments you have expressed here.


  439. $433$ Howard C art err.
    Come to thnk of it you are a great help! Cy.


  440. Carter,
    You’re exactly the type of moron who would hand out Purple Kool-Aid.

    Love,
    Ryan.


  441. I agree with many about the perhaps extreme levels of fundraising. What particularly irritated me were the sugarcoated messages accompanying them.

    So a few years ago I decided to no longer receive these incessant solicitations and emails which are basically commercials and not why I am here.

    And, surprise, I could–it all just fell off. I unsubscribed, no one calls anymore and nothing changed–no one missed me, and I felt a lot better. Except, I do not participate in this part of the school, do not go to the auctions and all of that-it seems to go on fine without me.

    So, once again, here too it is still possible to just say “No.”

    Siddiq


  442. Ryan O’Poo 440

    Carter,
    You’re exactly the type of moron who would hand out Purple Kool-Aid.

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

    A startlingly accurate insight.


  443. Re #:433

    Several people know who Howard Carter is. He has a very strong lunatic feature. Bear this in mind as you read these bizarre posts. In fact, there are quite a few of the older zealots who have that as a chief feature and they will never be able to see beyond the position they have adopted. It’s pointless to have a discussion with someone who is that crystallized. It’s also very sad and may even be dangerous given the right circumstances.

    Former members living in Oregon House may have noticed that the key members of the “inner circle” rarely appear in the store or the post office anymore. The few that I have noticed recently look bad, very bad. There is a disturbing tension in the face, something very unhealthy being hidden. And oddly enough (actually not so odd) the former members look radiate.


  444. Ryan, there is a world of difference between an extremist suicide bomber and someone who believes he is here to gain for his evolution, and can and does make efforts. Get real!

    Siddiq


  445. Re#443:

    It should read, …the former members look radiant.”


  446. Vena, I have often noticed the same–there is such a relief when all the stress of the school falls off…

    The art is trying to get there while working on one’s self, whether in or out of the school, not just to relax into the grips of the instinctive brain.

    PS I believe that there is a misconception as to the identity of Howard


  447. Mole, “the choice is not ours.concious beings are the only ones who are qualified to serve as a go between for influence C for those who are not awake”–so you need permission to be present? wake up, and you are awake, why look for affirmation from anyone else?


  448. Yesri Baba “Shaking the cobwebs out of your head and seeing what a sucker you have been-Priceless”

    I agree. That is why we are here!


  449. Ames, while I can theoretically agree with your statements from a purely “life-psychology” point of view (not from thinking psychologically) I disagree with your statement that Robert “does not empower his students, rather he does everything to make them permanently dependent on him”

    I have learned how to self remember from Robert, as well a number of other important tools for waking up. This has changed my life and is changing it still. This is deeply empowering the right part of ourself. As has been said many times over, no one needs to participate in what you call the pathological parts of the school–rather this is where character is built or lost.

    Thanks for reading.

    Siddiq


  450. Siddiq,
    Interestingly, Jim Jones was also addicted to Darvon.
    Are you sure it’s me who needs to get real?
    Love,
    Ryan


  451. Siddiq, take it easy old girl,you’re getting your knickers in twist.

    First, it was not Ryan but Mole that gave the Islamic extremist analogy

    Second, The quote you attribute to me in post 447 is actually a quote from Howard Carters post 433.

    Go back and this time read carefully…..


  452. (Siddiq used the “shotgun effect” to capture that prized 444 spot. It’s unlikely that he/she will be “de-throned” by the moderators.)


  453. Re3446 Siddiq:

    “Vena, I have often noticed the same–there is such a relief when all the stress of the school falls off… ”

    The clear and open expression on the faces of students who have left is the relief of no longer being associated with a corrupt and bogus organization.
    ________________________________________________

    “The art is trying to get there while working on one’s self, whether in or out of the school, not just to relax into the grips of the instinctive brain.”

    A great misconception and buffer of fof members is that people who leave “relax into the grips of the instinctive brain.”
    _________________________________________________

    “PS I believe that there is a misconception as to the identity of Howard”.

    What are you basing this assumption on?


  454. 444 “there is a world of difference between an extremist suicide bomber and someone who believes he is here to gain for his evolution”

    And there is a world of difference between “someone who believes he is here to gain for his evolution” and the Howard Carter’s of the world, in or out of the FOF.


  455. For Howard (and all of us),

    This is the story not of an emperor, but of anyone who has been duped by “knaves”, and will not admit of their error. Yes, it is a valuable lesson, but the sooner one learns, and moves on, the better for all.

    http://hjem.get2net.dk/chenero/hca/hcaev009_en2.html


  456. The former members look radiate.


  457. Oddly enough (actually not so odd) the former members look radiate.


  458. Interesting blog: you read the posts backward and it make the same non-sense. Does it remind you of anything?

    GOlb (for one…)


  459. Siddiq (441): “So a few years ago I decided to no longer receive these incessant solicitations and emails which are basically commercials and not why I am here.”

    I assume you also attend no FOF events whatsoever: no meetings, no dinners, no concerts, no lunches at Apollo d’Oro? Otherwise how do you avoid the “incessant solicitations”.

    I guess zero participation is one way to be in the School and not be negatively affected.

    Vena (443): “Former members living in Oregon House may have noticed that the key members of the “inner circle” rarely appear in the store or the post office anymore. The few that I have noticed recently look bad, very bad. There is a disturbing tension in the face, something very unhealthy being hidden. And oddly enough (actually not so odd) the former members look radiant.”

    Yes, I’ve noticed that too. I sometimes have lunch at the OH store and the occasional sightings of FOF leaders are indeed disturbing – tense and shifty looking.


  460. Golb 457

    The workings of your brain, maybe?


  461. Rhino–“I guess zero participation is one way to be in the School and not be negatively affected.”

    Whatever it takes to get the job done!

    What I was trying to say is to get that radiance that Vena writes about does not get automatically achieved by leaving (at least it is not permanent–otherwise all non members would be radiant–they are not), nor by staying. But by working on oneself!

    Golb, I always read the blog backwards going back to where I have read before–it explains many things and little difference actually

    Thanks all!

    Siddiq


  462. post 444 Siddiq

    Siddiq, you want to blieve there is a ‘world of difference’ between a Muslim suicide bomber and someone like Howard Carter.
    I understand. It’s actually pretty scary. You need to buffer it. after all, he is supposed to be in the same school as you,with the same aims,sincerity blah blah blah.

    But lets look at the similarity in thinking between these ‘extremists’

    The Islamic version heeds the word of God as expounded by the Prophet Mohammed in the holy book of the Koran.There is only one god so people holding any other beliefs are heretical.In this case it’s fine to kill them. There are a host of ‘holy laws’in the Koran the breaking of which deserve the death penalty. This interpretation is even upheld by the Clerics leading major countries like Iran.
    So. take a young, naive, idealistic person with a dose of lunatic thinking who wants to be a ‘Good Muslim’ and put him under the sway of a lunatic Cleric and you have someone utterly convinced of the justice and rightousness of his cause ( destroying the blasphemous infidels). The reward for being a true believer is eternal life in paradise.

    Howard Carter has made frequent reference to the greater importance of the ‘next life’ and his utter conviction that he and the ‘School’ are carrying out the wishes and serving tne needs of ‘Influence C’

    Here is a quote from the highly revered FOF ‘Cleric’ Girard Haven taken from his book ‘Creating a soul’ page 576.

    ” If Robert Burton knows what he is doing and we don’t,we have no basis for judging or doubting him.Instead,we simply have to trust him,as a child trusts his parents,or dog trusts his master.If he asks us to do things which seem to have no connection to awakening-or even to be ‘wrong’- we have no choice but to do them anyway’

    Siddiq, Read that last sentence over again and try to understand what it implies….and think of the other ‘Howard Carters’ that you know in the FOF . I can think of several that fit the description. Then realise that they would do whatever they were commanded to do. This is the point I’m making.


  463. Siddiq, 442 – how did you unsubscribed? Because I don’t think it is possible to unsubscribe from main lists, and that’s where all “commercials” are coming from. You can unsubscribe from Community lists, like Classifieds and Jobs (where simple guys are trying to rent their rooms and sell their old cars), but there is no getting out from main FOF “Students” list. I wanted it too when I got sick from all commercials and I tried few times, and failed. Could you please elaborate how exactly did you manage to “unsubscribe” from main lists? Where is the “unsubscribe from main list” button? I am sure many students all over the world will thank you for sharing this trick.


  464. Simple truth #405OSHO :~ BEAUTY { FOR AN ENLIGHTENED CONSCIOUSNESS , ONLY BEAUTY EXISTS } [ must READ & COMMENT ]?
    “Beauty doesn’t exist in things ;
    beauty is a projection .

    Beauty is not objective ;
    it is subjective .

    So
    one day somebody looks beautiful ,
    another day
    the same person become ugly .

    It is you who projects ,

    it is you who withdraws ;
    the other work just as a screen .

    Once you come to know that
    the mind projects beauty and ugliness ,

    that the mind projects good and bad ,

    you stop projecting .

    Then for the first time you come to know
    what objective reality is.

    It is neither good nor bad ,
    it is neither beautiful nor ugly ;
    it simple is .
    All your interpretations drop with the projection.”
    6 hours ago – 3 days left to answer. – 2 answers – Report Abuse
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    Answers
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    Question/Answer Information

    canron4peace

    Philosophy

    canron4peace

    Before commenting on this quotation, I would prefer to know more about its context. As a student of comparative religion, Osho frequently was asked for interpretations of various scriptures, in which case he would first interpret, and then comment on the interpretation.

    If I had to comment without the complete text, this is what I would have to say: whenever an individual uses some or all of his senses within a framework of a moment, the totality of the physical body attaches a vibrational and identificational “nametag” or “barcode”, so to speak, to the object. Yes it is subjective in that sense and each individual’s assessment can vary in the same way that this person can look at something with the naked eye, or with a magnifying glass, or with a normal microscope, or with an electron microscope, and so on. We can look at our senses also as tools. An artist’s rendition of something he experiences is an example. It can be totally different from mine, yet for him it is what it is.
    Now how does this fit in within humanity’s experience of the object? Imo this is the imaginary world. On a logical level one might say that the consensus causes an evening out of vibrations and thus reaches an “official barcode”. This is very important to me because on one hand what I am saying is that either everything is an illusion or it is not, and this is important because we either create our reality or we don’t.
    My experience leads me to believe that we do, and if that is correct, then my reality can be totally different than someone else’s every given moment. Why every given moment? Because my interpretation of a subject (could be object) is subject to change at any given moment and thus provide the subject (object) with a different “barcode”, which I then can experience multiplied in my reality due to the universal law of attraction, “that which is like unto itself is drawn”. Again this works very well for the individual. For example the man selling roses on the street corner can stick a rose in front of my face which I then conceptualize from my past experience as being a rose of such and such a “barcode”. Every time I give him my payment I can be buying a different rose. Well it IS a different rose. If not I am getting ripped off. There is no issue here.
    Is there an issue for my wife, my neighbour, Mr. Bushe, or the rest of humanity? Clearly not. Let us suppose that the “barcode for a red rose always begins with 11122233444 and only when I add more detail it becomes 11122233444.98977.445575 and each decimal point indicates a different scale of specific qualities. In the world of vibrations this might read as a level 4 scarlet-red long-stemmed rose with a heady sweet smell which can induce a higher state in me. If I can use an extra thirty words to describe this rose, why could I not use an equally complex “barcode”? Now this “barcode” IS universal, beyond words, is it not? Beyond words in the sense that words are not necessary for the process of creation. Furthermore anyone else can attach their personal meaning to my “barcode”, ie. a child in the next car might only see its “barcode” for ‘a flower’. This does cause the planet to collapse or the universe to implode. No problem!
    Now getting back to the supposed quote, ”

    .” Once you come to know that
    the mind projects beauty and ugliness ,
    that the mind projects good and bad ,
    you stop projecting .
    Then for the first time you come to know
    what objective reality is.”

    Imo this is a lie, a con-job, or I don’t understand anything.
    Imo this is a chain to enslave followers or I am blind.
    Imo lied-to, conned, slaves will continue to look for this supposed objective reality forever or until they go bankrupt whichever comes first, or they will wake up and say, “Alright! Enough!” “My objective reality is none of your business. Adios Amigo !”

    Need I say more?

    Simple all right! Here is my view on this idea of learning to be objective as found today on yahoo answers in the philosophy section. Osho is the same as Bagwan Shree Rajneesh.


  465. 461. Mole.
    I appreciate what you are trying to put across, but why do you choose to use Moslems as an example, when there are plenty home grown fanatics who think nothing of taking out as many “rag heads”as they can in any way they can. Even using depleted uranium to do so which doesnt just kill the victims but also their progeny. In fact there is one running the White house in Washinton. Islam means surrender to something higher. There are just as many Christians or any other faiths who have an extreme minority in them. Why choose moslems? It spoils an otherwise good argument for me. Cy.


  466. Howard Carter #433

    “We don’t own our bodies; that’s one of the biggest myths mankind perpetrates on itself. Influence C owns them.”

    This is one of the biggest myths the FOF perpetrates upon its members and is an example of institutional complicity in Robert’s sexual predatory behavior. Anyone who promotes this belief supports the play of crime. The fourth way literature is quite clear on the origin of ‘c-influence’, influences derived from person to person contact with a living, breathing conscious being.


  467. Siddiq (460): ” What I was trying to say is to get that radiance that Vena writes about does not get automatically achieved by leaving.”

    This is typical of your evasive, pseudo-reasonable style.

    Actually what you were trying to say, and in fact did say, was: “So a few years ago I decided to no longer receive these incessant solicitations and emails which are basically commercials and not why I am here.”

    And I said: “I assume you also attend no FOF events whatsoever: no meetings, no dinners, no concerts, no lunches at Apollo d’Oro? Otherwise how do you avoid these incessant solicitations?”

    You were making the point that despite the appalling solicitations described by Purchase Awakening in 403 (please read this everyone!) it is OK to remain in the FOF because you can unsubscribe from the appropriate email list (if indeed this is true, as questioned by No Person in 462).

    I was making the point that in any case you still get bombarded by equally incessant solicitations at every FOF event. In other words there’s no escape other than going into hiding (which some students do!).

    These facts illustrate reality: the FOF has become utterly commercialised, it no longer has any real claim to being a spiritual school, it is merely a conduit for money and sex to RB.


  468. on June 27, 2007 at 11:56 pm Ames Gilbert

    To Siddiq (#13-441)
    There seem to be a number of central, recurring themes on this blog. One of them is the willful disregarding of the evidence on every level, physical and psychological, internal and external. So, you “turned it off”; that doesn’t mean it isn’t there. When you bury your head in the sand, the world above the sand still goes on regardless. Hiding your eyes with your hands whenever you come across uncomfortable dichotomies and chanting “nah-nah-na-na-nah” doesn’t bring you knowledge, let alone wisdom. You say there is much that seems to go on fine without you, but you are still involved, still responsible; saying “no” to a small aspect does not absolve you of complicity in the rest.

    Members of the board of the Fellowship of Friends, take note: Ignorance (especially willful) is no defense, so too “just following orders” is no defense.

    Hey, someone should pass on this blog to a PhD candidate in psychology who is looking for a thesis… such rich material!


  469. Whalerider comments on
    Howard Carter #433

    “We don’t own our bodies; that’s one of the biggest myths mankind perpetrates on itself. Influence C owns them.”

    “This is one of the biggest myths the FOF perpetrates upon its members and is an example of institutional complicity in Robert’s sexual predatory behavior. Anyone who promotes this belief supports the play of crime. The fourth way literature is quite clear on the origin of ‘c-influence’, influences derived from person to person contact with a living, breathing conscious being.”

    Where did the idea of OWNERSHIP come in? Howard, even IF that was true (which it is not) then do you think some dude like Robert Burton OWNS the gods?
    ……………..
    Cy, 464

    I agree, all religions (even secular ones) have extremist fundamentalists and as far as the TINY nudge it takes for an extremist to cross the subtle line into terrorism just look at our own terrorist groups – KKK, and the Arian Nation, and whatever that Oklahoma City bombing guy was into. Extremism rides along a very dangerous edge and most don’t realize it because most are not extremists and tend to give others the benefit of the doubt.
    ……………………
    ” Once you come to know that
    the mind projects beauty and ugliness ,
    that the mind projects good and bad ,
    you stop projecting .
    Then for the first time you come to know
    what objective reality is.”

    I don’t think this is accurate exactly. What this guy is calling the ‘mind’ is very deep and has layers and layers that no one is aware of. Our bodies are part of these layers of mind. So this seems rather simplistic. But I do think that beauty and ugliness, attraction and repulsion are a good way to come to know oneself.

    And as far as ‘objective’ meaning ‘universally agreed upon’, well, I agree with something I remember Bruce saying many many yeas ago: Its not objective, just objectionable.


  470. Rhino, I am not trying to be evasive, just selective, taking what I believe is useful, keeping an open mind and not taking part of aspects I do not support, emotionally or otherwise. Thanks.

    Unsubscribing is done by setting the right filters on the inboxes, using keywords.

    Easy.

    S.


  471. Whalerider and all who think that remaining in the school is the equivalent of and condones the “play of crime” etc., does this also mean leaving the USA for some other country when we see Bush commit his atrocities in the world? Can we do something about all the injustice everywhere, all at the same time? Or is there room to make the world a better place, one moment at the time?

    S.


  472. 471 Siddiq

    Bush is not the god of this country like Burton is the god of the fellowship of friends. But, yes we are culpable in the practices of our leaders and if we choose we can try to get rid of Bush, Cheney and the lot and replace with better leaders. Can you do that in the fellowship of friends?


  473. #453 Tim Campion

    Why are you taking note of 4444444444444444444444s?


  474. Come on Siddiq (471), this is silly. The USA and FOF are not directly comparable – the scale difference is too large. A better analogy would be: if you were paying $10,000 p.a. to be a member of an exclusive country club and you discovered that the founder and figurehead of the club was sexually abusing younger members shipped in from poor countries around the world on phony green cards, what would you do? Support the cover-up? “Keep an open mind and not take part of aspects I do not support” (your words). Or what?


  475. on June 28, 2007 at 1:12 am Laughing Love

    To 474 Rhino Neal.

    Well said.

    Common sense and logic are always a breath of fresh air on this board.

    Siddiq’s ability to compartmentalize is quite developed.

    LL


  476. 466 Cyclops.

    Please feel free to insert the lunatic Fanatic group of your choice if you don’t want to consider Muslims.


  477. on June 28, 2007 at 1:25 am Laughing Love

    To Siddiq (470)

    What would Robert say about your unsubscribing?

    Would he approve?

    I know that contributing money is a very important aspect in the school. Is ignoring and denying requests for financial contributions widely acceptable behavior?

    What if all members adopted your attitude?

    Isn’t it true that the school would disappear?

    What would Robert do if all his followers “blocked” the e-mailed requests for money?

    LL


  478. Siddiq, thanks! I wish I knew before how to avoid those commercials… They were so incredibly annoying!!!
    Somehow in my mind “unsubscribing” was something you ask the sender to do, like “please stop harassing me with your commercial mail.” FOF doesn’t offer such option – you’re getting ads, whether you want or not, every day. No “opt out” opportunity.
    And you’re saying that unsubscribing could have been done on a defensive side, just by blocking my box with key words… I never thought of this. Oh well. Live and learn. :)


  479. on June 28, 2007 at 1:42 am Purchasing awakening

    (This is about a CHOSEN ONE).

    1. What is the Premiere $25,000 dinner?
    C Influence will choose one student in the entire school to have a wine cellar dinner with Robert and Asaf for the Holidays.
    Black tie. Candlelight.
    The dinner will be a three course Galleria gourmet dinner accompanied by three wines from Robert&rsquos personal reserve.
    Thank you to everyone who participated – we reached our goal of $25,000 …. $25, $25, $25, at a time….
    Yesterday, Robert called the winner, XXX at Apollo and let him know that the dinner would be that same night!…
    They were taken downstairs into the intimate wine cellar…
    Robert spoke about the valuation of the whole school in the raising of the 25,000 dollars, and about the way C influence manifested through this event. …
    Robert said that this dinner was worth doing because of the state we were sharing in the moment. …
    As the winners were leaving the Galleria, an owl in the cypress tree called to them, “who, who, ‘are you’” reminding them of the great help they have – the owl remained until Robert was called and then the owl flew off. Robert remembered that on New Year’s last year there was also a shock of the owl in the cypress tree.
    You are all winners.

    (P.S. Take a look at my previous post 425 – it appeared later due to moderation so you may have missed it.)


  480. 425 & 403

    Unbelievable.


  481. Purchasing Awakening #403 and #425:

    Do you think the IRS has any awareness of this sleazy business?


  482. on June 28, 2007 at 2:57 am Skeptical Optimist

    425 & 403
    My, my, this is what the fof posters here have been defending???

    429 Ames Gilbert
    Said before, but never so well. Thanks for your thought process Ames.

    JoelF


  483. Siddiq, help me. I confess I had no idea it was this bad.

    Bruce, “unbelievable”, I’m with you.

    I’m referring to Purchasing Awakenings posts 425 and 479. I left the FOF nine months ago, but these emails were sent in 2005? So I saw the desperate attempt to raise money for Vienna Opera House tickets and for the RVW? Siddiq, I must have been buffering then as you are now (and everyone else who remains in the FOF).

    I just reread 479 and although it’s almost convincing it still seems OTT even by FOF standards. Can anyone confirm its reality? Or is it a parody?

    perturbed, RN


  484. Ex-Fellowship members that are still interested in the Fourth Way and living in and around Oregon House, if they are not doing so already, should have meetings to discuss the direction of the Work. If there are real meetings then current members will have someplace to go to keep their work alive when they leave.


  485. Hello ~ Does anyone remember the name of that planet that got too close to the sun and got ‘fried’ ? Please let me know…
    ___________________________

    To ‘Purr – chasing Awakening’ ~

    Wow…this has to be one for my top 10 list (if I had one)!

    Thank you for that objective signpost; its for those reading this blog everyday, whose inner natures are still like those preachers, who, unbeknown to the weekly bible study groups, stay on top of Stephen King’s latest releases;

    these sorts of posts are just what the ‘blog ark’ needs to balance opinion with that which simply shows itself as a ‘deed’, a ‘product’ of The Fellowship of Friends, without say-so and could, should and would… Zen like, without the fluff. It has all the energy and dooms-day energy as everything at ISIS, “pay before I die”; yet wait, didn’t you say you’d be around for 10,000 years, serving the School?
    Conscious vouchers with deadlines on Eternity? No rainchecks for those on lesser lifetimes than yourself?

    ________________________________

    421 wrote ~

    To unoanimo – 411

    “Inner considering is a RESULT of F. D.
    F.D.is a much broader, more invisible, domain.
    Inner considering can be viewed and studied from the second state.
    F.D.,in anything but its most banal forms, can only be observed from the third state.
    This is the reason several bloggers deny its exstence.”
    ________________________

    You spelled ‘existence’ wrong ~ That is not a coincidence.

    Hummm; keep it simple Uno., alright here goes ~

    I simply want to share a few thoughts on the above ‘Star Trec Vulcan’ wiseacring of Feminine Dominance; let me know, others than just HC, if I am missing something.

    To me, if you’re viewing something internally, such as thoughts, first responses, attitudes and the like, then this viewing-state is already outside the ‘normal’ conception of second state, which, in of itself, is not prompted to look internally prior to certain ‘obvious and not so obvious personal impediments’…

    So, to me, the triad has already changed as soon as you say to a person or yourself, so to speak, lifeperson or not, ‘Hey, look there, you just pulled on your ear when I asked whether you liked my new car; BTW, what do you really feel, are you hiding your real opinion of my purchasing of it?’

    So, no, Feminine Dominance (or Goddess Dominance) cannot be viewed from a second state perspective, for it is the very state that it occurs within, spontaneously, without conscious permission, quicker than the emotional center, for it is the very construct or game board that all the pieces move around on, including the emotional. Yet the board is not called ‘Feminine Dominance’, it is the mind-based-self.

    The second state, while its functioning (with nothing in the clockwork gears or simply a functioning that does not mind that the hand on the clock is ticking backwards) does not have an overseer other than the King of Clubs or the ‘Little Me’ in the ‘no-holds-bar-sponge-mind)…

    One of the greatest deficiencies (which is sorta redundant here, but you’ll get it) of a School of Relative Awakening, aka, The Fellowship of Friends, is that there are no hard core principles, i.e., objective, un-manipulated standards by which the teacher is foremost accountable for;

    how do I say this, when the aim is to go beyond the form and that the teacher, being the teacher of that which he is teaching, master thereof, privileged to step outside the classroom and fail numerously, for he has already passed once?

    Because his students are ‘in form’ and the teacher’s inconsistencies and breaking of principles is their license to do this as well, which, to me, absolutely makes Robert Burton a Man #4, not 5, 6 or 7.

    No man (or woman) who has reached any level of objective spiritual sense of conscious conscience, could ever allow their own contradictions and outright raping of objective principles to be subconsciously taken in by younger psyches and used as a sort of crutch, a sort of ‘stepping stone made of quick drying cement’;

    students cannot graduate from the Fellowship of Friends due to Robert Burton’s sub-conscious, not the conscious level; what they see is what he wants to show, what they hear is what they cannot believe because Robert has not showed it to them; those who he has showed it to, has either left or are enacting the same triad of pain body shopping as he himself, creating contradictions for the sake of the automatic self that lives on such…

    Proof of this absolute falsity in the concept of breaking certain objective principles while remaining ‘seemingly objective’ is shown in the Fellowship of Friends use of the idea of Lifetimes,

    any thought or ‘I’ that arises in the clean psyche of another perceiving the ‘gut feeling’ that something does not feel right,

    is immediately pigeon-holed as being the fatalistic receiver of ‘The Lower Cannot see the Higher’;

    in actuality, it does not need to see, it can feel, particularly when it comes to damaging another’s essence or twisting magnetic center into not attracting one’s first line efforts to ‘be the words’, rather, to attract subjective third line obedience,

    to align one’s focus on what is needed of you, rather than what you need of it as well…

    You cannot pay enough for Robert Burton, yet, reverse the roles for a moment and ask ‘How has he paid for me?’ I have been his student, has he knelt down to serve my curiosity and desire that he reconcile my inner confusion concerning his hypocrisies; the very ones that he calls ‘Feminine Dominance’ and ‘Unfortunate Heterosexual Programming’?

    For instance, clean, open accountability of all contradictions that arise in the Fellowship of Friends; yet, this does not happen;

    Narcissus does not understand that the reflection he is so mesmerized with in the pond is that of his murdered twin brother looking into his amnesic insanity…

    I invite the Fellowship of Friends to take a braver look into the contradictions, to not see them as things needing to be transformed, but rather, transmitted back to where they came from…

    It is my sense that continued crime in a spiritual school cannot be transformed, the third force is not there, since it itself (the third force is Crime) has no higher standard to reflect upon other than its self referential Crime-self;

    therein you have the reciprocal effect of Relative Awakening, where knowing you have a problem is of greater important than going beyond what is important to the ‘little self’ and ‘mind’ activities that promote a mind-based-self…

    There are numerous ‘fail-safe’ devices in The Fellowship of Friends, (that is, ‘failure to see the reciprocal food-chain of ‘relative awakening’, to be other than a well esoterically educated contradictory self):

    all your Third line efforts go into supporting a First Force phenomenon which betrays the Third Line that created its wealth and availability of resources;

    one of these fail-safe devices manifest as being the Fellowship of Friends Theory of Lifetime, applied like an objective principle with a subjective, principle denying, heavy hand, of a self-calming dictator.

    To me, the condition of the Fellowship of Friends as a school of relative awakening started with the relative awakening of Robert Burton and stopped right there, as all things do when a pyramid triad is accepted as what one wants, no matter the results of those who are tumbling down the sides.

    It is interesting to note that the most exciting events to occur within the Fellowship of Friends in 38 years are its failures and contradictions, not its awakenings and celebrations of conscious doing (save the celebrations of those things that have supposedly already happened to Robert Burton many moons ago)…

    No, its when some portion, some limb on the Affirmation Tree is just too slow in budding, in being that ‘I want a nice flower now dammit!!’ impression, that suddenly the spiritually desperate become excited by some inner circle student spinning a $30,000 dollar need of the teachers finger;

    hence, as all pain body ploys go, it becomes the students need to not feel needed of,

    therefore they pay enormous amounts of money so to return to the habitual (not unlike the disappointment of many after an orgasm) of not having anything anymore, not being needed anymore,

    depleted till next paycheck, looking forward to the next triad of depletion, need me and now does not need me inner picture of self.

    What’s that HC? Feminine Dominance, Masculine Dominance, both? Take your pick; the next thing I’ll see you guys wiseacre is C-Influence Dominance, now there’s a Catch 22 for ya!

    Schools of the future will have a rotation of teachers, to keep things ‘jovial’, less likely to feed the Freudian automatic desires of pain body’s need for a protector or, strangely enough, a target of animosity: the church needs Satan as much as they need God… odd, yes?

    As far as I can tell no one is denying the existence of the inner forces that are ‘prematurly’ and ‘academically’ labeled as Feminine Dominance;

    although we are questioning the use of this ‘labeling’ and ‘name calling’…

    It’s one thing to call a child ‘lard butt’ because he actually has lard on his pants and that of hurting another by labeling them such, based upon their being a bit overweight or obese.

    The application of what stands for Feminine Dominance is used like a scepter of unconditional obedience to the teacher’s personal interpretations, (being that Robert Burton has never ‘spilled the beans or opened the Pandora’s box of how his particular Essence evolved into its current ‘self vibration’ leaves the students of the Fellowship of Friends in a very lopsided position,

    having no objective framework to connect or distinguish, without a shadow of doubt, Robert Burton’s personal interpretations with those of objective principles who are flowing through a conscious being;

    so you have another fail-safe device, which is (from Robert Burton himself) “I do not talk about my time as a Man #4; it is in the past now.” “Da Vinci is speaking everything I say.”

    Yeah, well, let’s ask Da Vinci; is that ‘possession profundity’ suppose to impress upon someone a certain ‘Goddess Dominance’ to not doubt, that such a genius as Da Vinci can not have a little coconut cottage cheese on his beard?

    This is very interesting to me, for actually, what he is denying to feed to his students curiosity and objective desire for a balanced relativity is his actual current condition of being (unbeknown to the fawning of Affirmation itself) just like them, one of them and this shows itself in the extraordinary lengths his ‘good students’ go to protect him from the curiosity of essence’s desire for Holy Reconciliation,

    which is actually right work of Higher Emotional Center.

    Most of the form within this school of relative awakening keeps the five centers in check, severely limiting the Higher center’s expression of curiosity, accountability, transparency, unpatronizing sharing, and the like;

    a sense of conscious community, not conscious communion for the sake of one man who cannot do it himself; who has found himself relying on the naive efforts of students sincere desire to be a conscious participant, budding teachers of budding teachers,

    to have it look like he’s doing it; Robert Burton is doing nothing, he is not the Third Force, the third force in the Fellowship of Friends is ‘desire’, ‘need’, ‘want’ of Affirmation, want of identity as a struggling self by other struggling selves, including the teacher himself;

    Robert Burton also needs Affirmation, this is where the multiple lovers plays the part, only one lover does not reflect the ‘House of Mirrors’ that Affirmation has as its arsenal,

    many lovers equates with many selves, contradictions, even different forms of sexual expression,

    from soft-sex to infra-sex; what would you say to your ‘lover’ if they asked you ‘Here, take these Viagra pills, they’ll bypass any inner looking that might speak the truth to your objective sex center, which may result in a non-standing ovation; and to further prepare yourself for my expectations and lifestyle portrait behind closed, locked doors, of which I hold the key, here, watch these pornographic videos so you’ll get into the gist of what I am trying to say here, that is, what I am going to do to you, just like you were that woman, getting it, just like she deserves, she’s my mother really, but I didn’t say that, Uno. did.’ (?)

    no my friends, Robert Burton joined Alex Horn as a Man #4 and stayed right there; hopefully not crystallized as a #5; if so, its gonna be a tough ride for him, yet, it seems this is everyone’s story in some mysterious way, so turn a page and throw your bookmark out the window, because it does not have an ending.

    To me Feminine Dominance is simply a label that refers the uneducated essence back to the Christian stigma of woman being connected to ‘Original Sin’, that she is the secondary product of a primary man’s rib and that she was the primary cause of man’s fall…

    It is certainly not a conscious theory… I sense it is just Robert Burton’s subconscious way of holding an account with his mother’s sexual abuse of him; to feed upon this unresolved issue as a pain body infected self, rather than objectifying it, first and foremost by NOT doing to others those things she did to him; yet this is not the story…

    Robert Burton is playing the role of his mother’s pain body, its imprint, so to say, it’s psychic pain body fingerprint collection, with many of those who have come to him under the influence of innocence and spiritual imagination, not to mention their automatic quest for vain self calming from the onlookers, the ‘not chosen’ upon them;

    arriving, these boys and men do, into the ulterior motive of sexual desire or psychological manipulation by Robert Burton, so to have them seem ‘as himself was’ under the duress of being molested by his mother; in the same innocent state the boys arrive, as he came to his mother with or she to him, and they have gotten the same or if not, similar treatment and results.

    Yes, Robert Burton says its a test, some pass, some fail; did you pass the test Robert? Your actions seem to deny the answer is a positive one and all the intellectual wiseacring of your strongest students have yet to bring one objective hair to split its attention on this subject;

    BTW, sea otters have 1 million hairs per square inch.

    Feminine Dominance does not have “banal forms”, this again is a Robert Burton student trying to put hierarchical scales to something that cannot be weighed by Formatory Mind…

    Feminine Dominance is a negative connotation, a personal resentment of Robert Burton himself put upon a group of maternal responses,

    just as a ‘real man’ seeing a woman getting the blood beat out of her does not buffer it with litigious fear and self loathing at possibly getting his our blood split, but gets in there and does the cave man thing;

    this BTW is called Masculine Dominance or Paternal responses;

    take a deeper look,

    Robert Burton has a very dark account with maternal responses, being that his mother seemingly betrayed him concerning the offering of them to him, unconsciously though, right?

    she was a life person, yet, do conscious beings have mechanical manifestations that point to unresolved accounts with unconscious people, who performed unconscious deeds upon an unconscious recipient?

    Hummm, good question for a Galleria meeting(?)

    So, HC, wiseacre all you want and the “meek shall inherit the earth”… well ole World of Warcraft’ buddy, you can have it… You can also buy real Purple Hearts on Ebay.
    ________________________________________

    Hello ~ Ames 428

    You wrote ~

    “…because his disease has no cure. It is not mere weakness, but an incurable pathology.”

    This is true, only in relation to a section of the perceivable now.

    To me, all disease has a prerequisite and before that prerequisite was met, then what?

    A pathological structure is still a structure and its “incurable” condition is only in relation to a descending octave, not an ascending one; albeit odd to say, I only send ‘good medicine’ to whatever small seed lays on the bottom of Robert Burton’s ‘odd wishing well’ that it will sprout and grow into something more vast, less greed thriving, less self referential and dominant.
    __________________________

    Hello Siddiq ~ 444 Siddiq

    You wrote ~

    “Ryan, there is a world of difference between an extremist suicide bomber and someone who believes he is here to gain for his evolution, and can and does make efforts. Get real!”

    Siddiq
    ________________________

    Yes, Siddiq, there is a world of difference between the two you are speaking of, its called ‘Your little world’ and at this time you cannot verify otherwise.
    __________________________________________

    Hello ~ Mole,

    You wrote ~

    “the choice is not ours.concious beings are the only ones who are qualified to serve as a go between for influence C for those who are not awake”
    _________________________

    Then, tell me this, who choose to have this as a belief and not a verification? Did you not meet C-Influence before the Fellowship of Friends? And if not, then how do you explain the existence of a Magnetic Center prior to the Fellowship of Friends, or is it that they taught you to believe you have one of those too?

    Belief above Being is a disease, another faith-based fail safe device for the “meek shall inherit the earth.”

    Meek on or is it Squeak on?

    Just watch your squeakiness round the bigger mice, they’re called ‘elephants’.

    Read some Rumi with your Robert Burton, I think you’ll find that beer and olive oil does not mix; although 180% grain alcohol might, its your liver, no wait, its C-Influences liver, so, well, what do they care how your Astral Body’s womb is treated by yourself and others, you’ll get another chance in the next lifetime anyway, right?

    BTW ~ Unless you’re capable of taking such ‘profunidities’ all the way with us on the blog, i.e., your own being and not an overly educated and wishful thinking cerebellum couple, then try to second think, sense, such comfort-zone-posts:

    by reading it I can figure that you have never been approached by Robert Burton on one of his ‘bad days’;

    touched or made eye contact behind locked doors with another, whose intentions are not to become more wise, rather desires to disguise Wisdom itself in its own ironic need of curiosity and failure, with more confusion, obedience and playing the role of a human fur-shawl for Robert’s cold neck.

    And if you did, then, fur on; I pray for your magnetic body’s stuck-ness to be freed sooner than later.

    _________________________________

    Hello ‘No person’ ~

    You asked ~

    “462 No person
    Could you please elaborate how exactly did you manage to “unsubscribe” from main lists?”
    _________________________

    It’s easy, just add the FoF email address to your blocked sender’s list and wala! No more fluff.

    _________________________________________

    Hello Renald ~

    A quote from you ~

    ” Once you come to know that
    the mind projects beauty and ugliness ,
    that the mind projects good and bad ,
    you stop projecting .
    Then for the first time you come to know
    what objective reality is.”

    Imo this is a lie, a con-job, or I don’t understand anything.
    Imo this is a chain to enslave followers or I am blind.
    Imo lied-to, conned, slaves will continue to look for this supposed objective reality forever or until they go bankrupt whichever comes first, or they will wake up and say, “Alright! Enough!” “My objective reality is none of your business. Adios Amigo !”

    ___________________________

    Hummmm, I like confusion, it’s where we can stretch our being a bit.

    One way to see such ‘profound prose’ is ~

    Both ways,

    Yes, it is a Con and does make people into unemployed slaves, yet only in the triad of Crime; such profound things
    like that being used to sugar coat an earthy desire for affirmations and buffers, i.e., self calming $30,000 dollar rings on the hand that does habitually worthless things.

    It too can be a conscious tool;

    such writing points to the profound state of beholding, conscious awe, without the ‘struck’, without the need for any external stimulus to keep it going.

    From the miracle that you’re actually right here and cannot fathom or recall ever showing up in the first place, yet, here you are… outside of logical sequences.

    So, both your suspicions are true, it simply depends on who is using the quote, who is saying it for what ends, etc.

    It is not surprising that a student of Robert Burton would be more on the dark side of such ‘solar profundities’, after all, that is exactly where Robert Burton’s actions show he is at, with all his profound arrows, yet no target upon himself, no real self-referential as to the successes of his teaching; for certainly if Robert Burton is his own highest example of his own teaching them you guys have got to get down to the ‘Ace’ hardware store and get some of those really tall fishing boots, yes, ‘waders’, cause boots just won’t be enough when your conscience descends from the balloon string you’ve been hypnotized in puffing it up and tying it ‘off’… floating up there.

    __________________________________

    Love to you all.


  486. on 26 Jun 2007 at 11:44 pm
    379 Graduates

    God, what is the world coming to when you are recognized as one of the voices of reason. Has time actually mellowed you to this point ?


  487. on June 28, 2007 at 4:00 am Cake please

    Dear Graduate

    Have no fear. The ex’s new and old are alive and kicking in this sleepy hollow, Oregon House. Connecting and re-connecting. Magic is happening here and now. Doors are open, hearts are open, eyes are open.

    on the wing
    Cake


  488. To Ka 469 ~

    You wrote ~

    “…whatever that Oklahoma City bombing guy was into.”

    That was a revenge bombing for the US governments ‘handling’ of the Waco Texas incident.


  489. To ‘Purchasing Awakening’ ~

    You wrote ~

    “As the winners were leaving the Galleria, an owl in the cypress tree called to them, “who, who, ‘are you’” reminding them of the great help they have – the owl remained until Robert was called and then the owl flew off. Robert remembered that on New Year’s last year there was also a shock of the owl in the cypress tree.
    You are all winners.”

    ____________________________

    Yes, for the sake of balance to those still in the FoF: one of same species of owls a few years earlier or was it afterwards? smashed its skull one night into the Poseidon Fountain and Robert was shown its dead carcass the next morning floating in amongst the lotus and gold fish…

    He said something profound and sympathetic… I do not recall what it was.[

    _____________________________

    L.t.y.a.


  490. Cake please
    Dear Graduate

    Have no fear. The ex’s new and old are alive and kicking in this sleepy hollow, Oregon House. Connecting and re-connecting. Magic is happening here and now. Doors are open, hearts are open, eyes are open.

    on the wing
    Cake

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

    There needs to be large meetings where the accumulated energy is concentrated and shared.


  491. on June 28, 2007 at 4:19 am Laughing Love

    To Purchasing Awakening.

    Thanks for your very pithy post which reflects the truth about the greed involved in Robert’s endeavors.

    To Golb.

    Your posts are incomprehensible. Still, you reflect your physical discomfiture very clearly. Angry twitches, uncomfortable moments, panicked presence, defensive strikes.

    You seem filled with hatred. Your communications, in their loathing manner, are not understandable.

    Even the sarcasm, or “humor” is completely mystifying.

    Do you wish to be understood?

    LL


  492. on June 28, 2007 at 5:10 am Purchasing awakening

    To Rhino Neal: unfortunately it’s not a parody. This is an original e-mail with some exceptions sent by Alison to all students. Many people must have read this in 2004… There are tons, tons more like this, sent by various FOF ‘teams’ and officials DAILY but most of us simply buffer and don’t even read this stuff when it arrives…
    Take a close look in your ‘Deleted items’ box…


  493. Purchasing Awakening:

    I just saw your posts (#403, 425, 479). These messages are truly unbelievable. They can’t be real?

    If so, they represent a level beneath even “life’s” standards, a subterranean and sick world. (It’s no coincidence perhaps that the teacher is searching caves for the truth.)

    It bares little resemblance to the “school” I joined, where making that $40 monthly donation was a big decision.

    I’ve been involved in purchasing most of my career, and sense a bad deal when I see it. My advice: “shop around”.

    (And good luck!)


  494. 493

    You’re right Tim, this is a caricature of a school. It’s theater of the absurd… gone amok. I think back to the problems I knew that existed when I left, but this is way beyond anything I could have imagined.

    For me, the defenders and pontificators now take on a more grotesque ,surreal aura. This is what they are defending. I don’t know what else to say.


  495. OK, I thought of one more thing to say.

    I think the FOF hierarchy should be wearing uniforms.

    Orange jump suits.


  496. Bruce,

    Yes it’s sad. I don’t even feel like picking on them any more. Let’s go have beer and drown our sorrows…

    Tim


  497. You mean drown their sorrows. What are these otherwise intelligent people thinking?


  498. on June 28, 2007 at 5:51 am Cake please

    Dear Graduate

    Not qualified to speak for the New Emerging Radiant (Vena) community, many have been in the trenches for a long time.

    There is, keeping in theme, a lot of shell shock here. I’ll gag if I hear guru kind of thing.

    So from this limited point of view, what is happening in these few acres, is the most natural, organic process.

    So grass roots, but oh so powerful.

    Word by word, heart to heart. Over dinners, glasses of wine, in the Post Office, by the gas pump, chance encounters, and the not so chance encounters.

    Open has replaced closed. Choice has replace dogma.

    Magical, yes, truly.

    Never thought I would lose my soul and die the double death when i left.

    The biggest fear was the loss of the best thing the Fellowship ever produced, at least for me, friends.

    Wrong again.

    Here they all are. Now transversing time and space. Open arms left, right and center.

    And Graduate, I am touched by your thoughts and understand the power of accumulated energy.

    I also understand the power of a true blue friend looking you straight in the eyes and decades of effort to Be melt into one big smile.

    Isn’t it amazing, so glad to be here, with each and every breath.

    Brazen and unabashed
    Cake


  499. Dear Nika,

    thank you for your posts…a great contribution.
    I hope you will not stop sharing (writing)

    All the best


  500. Howard Carter #434

    I am still reeling from your post, Howard! I am glad you finally got that out in the open…maybe now you can separate from it and grasp what you are actually saying!

    “Conscious Beings are the only ones who are qualified to serve as a go between for Influence C for those who are not awake. This applies to the FoF and its students…”

    Where in the hell did you get that idea? Gurdjieff is rolling in his grave! There is no work book that states that! The fourth way is for the mystic, not sycophant sheep. The fourth way is about gaining self-determination and will through contact with a conscious being and a school for a specific purpose and for a set amount of time! Mystics don’t rely solely on others to change their state or commune with higher forces for them! The fourth way is about personal evolution…creating one’s own connection with the conscious aspect of the Ray of Creation through development of the higher centers in oneself. IN THIS LIFETIME!! Robert only ‘qualifies’ himself; he is a self-proclaimed conscious being and self-appointed dictator of the FOF. Robert was only ‘qualified’ to teach grade school and tennis!

    With your statement you separate the Fellowship of Friends from the fourth way tradition and relegate the FOF to a religion! Is this for the good of the members or to preserve your tax-exempt status and keep the money rolling in? For thousands of years religions have created a corrupt priest class who are the authoritative ‘middlemen’ for God and the ignorant believers. That’s NOT the fourth way, that’s the Catholic Church!

    Yet you have only one high priest of your religion. He claims that his God commands him to have sex with his younger male students in order to be humbled and to help them in their evolution. Any other religion would ex-communicate a priest who performs his ‘duty’ in that manner. That is not the fourth way! Oh, I get it now…it must be the new fifth way!

    BTW, stop lying to yourself and us. The reason you are so hip on obedience is because it is necessary for your own job security that you follow RB’s orders without question and not out of some ‘virtue’. You obey him to cover your own ass and keep your salary; you expect everyone else to do the same so nobody upsets the applecart and you can stay in business.


  501. A good day of post’s. Now of some of the currant members would take legal action instead of quiting. At least save some records to show how much Robert has been skimming into his “personal” funds. Perhaps at one time there were mebers of the board and fellowship Leadership who were misled. I find it hard to accept what has been communicated about the organized persuit of ever greater financial contibutions and any vestiage of conscience.

    On a personal level. I had to take a lookm at what in myself was attracted to and felt comfortablewith the Fellowship. In retrospect some things are clear. I had abondoment issues because my alcoholic father abondoned our family. i was accutomed to an institionalized existance having been in boarding schools both Ctaholic Prep and Military. I had few social skills and it was my first experience at having a strong support structure. I also had a fondeness for science fiction so the idea of a fury distruction of civilization was something I grew up with. I had studied The 4th way for several years and the knowledge and the use of the ideas was atrractive.
    Work with others and on the Ranch did teach me self remembering but after leaving I was ill equiped to work on my own. I susrvived and learned much of what Ames discussed in his post for myself.
    I think the system and the 4th way are real and possible. Just as Ouspensky said “give up the system” it does become time to graduate and become what we have the potential to be. It is strange as there are current members waiting for Robert to change to empower them and it can’t happen. Its interesting because if he was not wrongly crystallized and as been said becoming senile he would simply change his teaching to be more in tune with the needs of this students.
    I am an outsider in terms of currant events but it sounds like the Blog and now The Greater Fellowhip site are having profound effects.
    Reduced Payments, cancelled past doe donations. Financial incentives to stay. Change is possible.


  502. on June 28, 2007 at 7:32 am Fidel Castro

    Folks,did you know that Howard Carter and the “friends” are actually full time salary positioned puppets who’s task is to defend the “Berlin’s failing Wall?


  503. on June 28, 2007 at 10:22 am Gabriella F.

    To Purchasing Awakening and to all:

    … And apparently you missed the year 2006!!! The top has been raised, believe me… Thank you for your postings, I left just 4 months ago but I really needed this remainder! Unfortunately, I deleted them from my computer, otherwise I would paste some of them here.
    I feel a kind of pain that it is still there…
    Unsubscribing the mailing list was impossible (as No Person says, I suppose that there should be an “Unsubscribe” option, but in this case, you know, it was a “divine marketing”…), so the only option you had was buffering or marking the messages as spamming. Furthermore, the marketing messages were often coming from different senders, so you could not filter them in one single operation.
    And one day before I left, a friend of mine who still in the Fellowship, told me that “the events do not cost anything…” Buffers?
    A hug,
    G.F.


  504. Good morning Whalerider ~

    You wrote ~

    “Robert only ‘qualifies’ himself; he is a self-proclaimed conscious being and self-appointed dictator of the FOF. Robert was only ‘qualified’ to teach grade school and tennis!”

    _________________________________

    Whalerider, have you been dipping into the sauce with Bruce and Tim? Truly my friend, I cannot see any difference between Robert Burton’s ‘self-qualifying’ and ‘qualified’ pair of roles, do you?

    ____________

    L.t.y.a.


  505. unoanimo (485):

    Hello ~ Mole,
    You wrote ~
    “the choice is not ours.concious beings are the only ones who are qualified to serve as a go between for influence C for those who are not awake”

    No, actually Mole didn’t write that. That was Howard Carter in Post 434. Mole was quoting Howard, and then Siddiq mistakenly attributed the quote to Mole, and then proceeded to criticize Howard’s statement, and so on.

    Anyway… Post 434 is worth another look. Can’t tell exactly what Carter is saying, but I think he’s saying, “Give up your will to ‘the teacher’ and the school. Obey, obey, obey. Resistance is futile.”

    That’s my interpretation. This is what he actually writes: “We don’t own our bodies; that’s one of the biggest myths mankind perpetrates on itself. Influence C owns them.”

    So, he must be saying that if any of you out there have any concerns about Robert Burton, the Fellowship of Friends, and anything that might be seriously wrong with the organization, please disregard all of this. Please move along. After all, “we don’t own our bodies,” so why be worried about such trivial matters? Simply obey.


  506. on June 28, 2007 at 2:12 pm Bass Ackwards

    The Fellowhip in it’s short history can easily be seen as an echo of the Roman Catholic Church. An echo which would have been decried at it’s formation from all those early rebels who were not spiritually satisfied with organized religions – but look Friends, we have become one!

    From Wikipedia on Indulgences:
    In 1517, Pope Leo X offered indulgences for those who gave alms to rebuild St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The aggressive marketing practices of Johann Tetzel in promoting this cause provoked Martin Luther to write his 95 theses, protesting what he saw as the purchase and sale of salvation.

    From Wikipedia on the Inquisition:
    Inquisition is broadly used, to refer to things related to judgment of heresy by the Roman Catholic Church. It can mean an ecclesiastical tribunal or institution from the Roman Catholic Church for combating or suppressing heresy, a number of historical expurgation movements against heresy (orchestrated by the Roman Catholic Church), or the trial of an individual accused of heresy.


  507. on June 28, 2007 at 2:23 pm Ames Gilbert

    As a present to you all, but particularly to those trying to make a decision, I have posted a quote from Goethe in PDF format on this web page: http://www.californianativebulbs.com/PDFFiles/Goethe%20Quote.pdf
    The quote is laid out on a single standard page, and is decorated in color. Most people with a color printer should have no problems; I’m sorry, I can’t provide technical support if it doesn’t work for you…

    With love to you all, ‘in’ and ‘out’,
    Ames


  508. Thanks Ames.


  509. A gift for those choosing to leave, and everyone else.


  510. Thanks for the clarification, Purchasing Awakening (492).

    What is really blowing my mind about this is that, yes, I used to receive these emails and, yes, I used to skim and delete them, and, no, they didn’t push me immediately out of the FOF – another verification of the deep hypnotism I was under. I still believed RB was a “conscious being” and separated that from the ghastly fundraising, which I blamed on Alison.

    Fortunately the hypnotism gradually fell away and I started to see the FOF the way it actually is. You can’t seperate RB from Alison’s activities, or any of ther other absurdities. He encourages these things, he sets the tone, he’s directly responsible. Siddiq’s compartmentalising is just another form of lying.

    Contrast him with Nisargadatta, who lived in his tiny Bombay apartment till his death. At one point his US students told them they would like to collect some money to buy a car for him. He told them he wasn’t interested. That’s someone I could trust!

    RN


  511. I meant:

    At one point his US students told HIM they would like to collect some money to buy a car for him.


  512. on June 28, 2007 at 3:16 pm Purchasing awakening

    I think I lost my previous post, so I’ll try again…
    I must confess that I was probably buffering too when I was getting these solicitations years ago. I was quickly deleting them without thinking much about it. Sometimes I even donated money being crushed by ‘feminine dominance’ and ‘peer pressure’….
    It was so shocking to see all these solicitations piled up in my Deleted items box. Now I can simply see it all for what it is: shameless money-squeezing scam designed to pay for a excessive life style of one greedy individual. Look they would sell anything – dinners, breakfasts, his published ‘thoughts’, his videos, tours, even pictures taken with him, even book signing! Every day there is a pressure to buy, buy, buy… What for?? And we fools were buying… And smiling… and going deeper and deeper in credit card debt…and declaring bancruptcy…and blaming c-influence… Could I be so gullible?
    It’s humbling to see this now.
    It’s amazing to see how much money these events were raising… Where did it all go? They say “Apollo belongs to all of us”. So what happened to ‘my part’ of it when I left?….

    OK here’s more excerpts from 2004. Gabriella is right – things got worse in 2006… May be i’ll get to it too since I stilll have some from 2006. But let’s read some examples of ‘divine marteking’ of 2004 first…
    Enjoy. (And YES it’s all real. I only copy and paste and shortened it a little to save space. Also I took out names and phone ## but I haven’t added a word.)

    We have to raise $4,000 more to meet our $12,000 target.
    So far, all tickets have been sold within Apollo. We’d like outlying centers to
    purchase at least $2,000 for this auction.
    ************************************
    There are 2 more days to enter the 4 July Prize Drawing!
    You can be the winner of one of the pieces of jewelry or a trip to Apollo/ Athens. We have raised $8750 by now and
    we have to raise $3250 more to meet our goal.
    *************************************
    Touch the Gods with our Teacher in Greece. (2004)
    The ATHENA Tour with Robert – $2600 euros.
    The POSEIDON Tour with Robert’s teachings – $650 euros.
    Reception with Robert -35 euros
    Lunch with Robert – 220 euros (seated)
    Breakfast with Robert – 220 euros (seated)
    Dinner with Robert – 300 euros (seated)
    International meeting with Robert – 180 euros(first row), 150 euros (second row), 90 euros (general seating)
    Buffet reception with Robert – 20 euros
    Tea with Robert – 200 euros (seated)
    Credit cards accepted
    When should I book a ticket for Greece? RIGHT NOW!
    ***************************************
    Let us return again and again to the state of effort, to the miraculous present! The glorious gifts of the gods are not to be cast aside. Homer
    New prizes selected by our dear Teacher!
    Please visit our website and go to the Jewelry Prize Drawing
    and enter the drawing by purchasing a bookmark.
    Price is $44 (36 euro).
    ***************************************
    One of us could join Robert in his journey to Russia, October 9-13! Any of us can have a chance for only $10.
    95 students have already entered and we look forward for the next 85 entries. To enter: Reply in this moment to …
    Contact the raffle coordinator in your center or your regional raffle coordinator if you are in a center. Call … or email right now to … if you are in Apollo.
    ***************************************
    Dear Friends,
    The present moment can even bring you thoughts about
    the Jewelry Prize Drawing.
    Presence please.
    Visit our web site:
    and go to the Jewelry Prize Drawing to find out about the Special Prize.
    Presence please. The bookmark price is $44 (36 euro).
    ***************************************
    Because the Drawing for the Buenos Aires trip will take place this Sunday, November 7 at the Galleria before the meeting, you will need to buy your ticket now! Reply now to …
    ***************************************
    This year’s Holiday “Remembrance” Auction already started with the Thanksgiving Prize Drawing (have you bought your bookmark yet?) to be drawn on November 25th. Robert is offering more Holiday gifts that will be included on the Christmas Prize Drawing to be launched right after the Thanksgiving.
    ***************************************
    Dining with Robert – Here is Robert’s schedule:
    Monday 22:Goethe Room-Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$150.
    Tuesday 23:Goethe Room-Dinner-7:00 p.m.-$200.
    Thursday 25:Thanksgiving Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$200.
    Thanksgiving Dinner-3:30 p.m.-$350.
    Friday 26:Goethe Room-Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$150.
    Saturday 27:Goethe Room-Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$150.
    Goethe Room-Dinner-7:00 p.m.-$200.
    Sunday 28:Goethe Room lunch for 20 at 12:00 p.m. after meeting- $250-at table/$200 with partner/$100 standing
    Monday 29:Goethe Room-Bon Voyage Breakfast-6:30 a.m. $150.
    *****************************************
    Can you help us reach the goal?
    Robert’s goal for the Holiday Prize Drawing is $18000 and we have raised $2600 so far. Please purchase a $44 or $12 bookmark now and we will enter you in the Prize Drawing. The first 5 Holiday Prize Drawing winners will be chosen at the Live Auction on December 12!
    Only 3 more days to enter!
    Have you bought your tickets yet?
    *******************************************
    How wonderful to see so many students from all over the world visiting Apollo! Robert is teaching more than ever having THREE teaching events VERY DAY!
    A group of students in Apollo have produced at Robert’s request video recordings of what he considers highest moments of his teaching. Keep up to date with Robert’s conscious teaching and take the opportunity to purchase a video! Have one of your friends visiting here bring it back to you!Purchase your favorite video by visiting our web site by login into propylaia and click on the Apollo Auction link.
    *******************************************
    Dear Friends,
    Here’s a wonderful New Year’s Resolution for sustaining the New Man within you: Create or add to a personal Video Library of Robert’s Teaching Events.
    This collection will provide nourishment for your higher centers for many years to come as well as help the School to grow by contributing much needed monies to our Projects Fund. It’s a win-win situation!
    We offer you the following sale items to begin, or add to, your collection: Select 3 items for $100 or EU75
    Select 4 items for $130 or EU100
    Select 5 items for $150 or EU115
    CD’s: Travelling with Robert – volume 1, 2, 3, Dinner with Robert – volume 1, 2, 3, Meeting with the Teacher – volume 1, 2, 3. Select 3 items for $44 of EU35
    **************************************
    Dear Companions,
    As Robert has the first teaching events in Madrid this weekend,
    Tel Aviv raffle, London raffle and another Milan Raffle are open for your entries from around the world!
    New prices!
    1 ticket $10.
    3 tickets $20
    6 tickets $30
    12 tickets $40
    24 tickets $50.
    “When one gains, we all gain”. Love, Robert
    *****************************************
    Dear Companions,
    The table of Love is the table of the magician.
    We have seen enough of the lower centers, it is time to see world twelve. Join us this weekend and the coming weekend at the Teaching Events with Robert!
    ******************************************
    Dear friends travelling to Milan,
    Robert is offering to seat with you and sign a volume of a book chosen by you at the reception after the meeting in Milan.
    If you would like to purchase a volume of “Best Thoughts” or “Thoughts from the Teacher”, please contact X in Milan. You can also purchase a volume at the Apollo Media Products table after the meeting. If you would like to bring your own volume of a precious book, please do so and contact X.
    Book signing: EU 50
    Dedication: EU 100.


  513. Re: Whalerider #500

    “BTW, stop lying to yourself and us. The reason you are so hip on obedience is because it is necessary for your own job security that you follow RB’s orders without question and not out of some ‘virtue’. You obey him to cover your own ass and keep your salary; you expect everyone else to do the same so nobody upsets the applecart and you can stay in business.”

    This is very true for most of those on salary. But there is also something else more insidious and unhealthy that keeps things going. Many of the men close to Robert (not necesarily the young lovers but the roles do overlap) spent years groveling and ingratiating themselves to get there. They seem to have a desperate need for approval and exalt over any little crumb of attention thrown their way. It was embarassing to observe. There is something very childlike and immature in this behavior and to see grown men behave this way is sad. Howard Carter is one of these. I could name a dozen others but most people here know the members that I am referring to.

    It is also true of some of the women who have maneuvered their way to positions near RB but the dynamic is a little different. It doesn’t seem quite so pathetic.


  514. on June 28, 2007 at 3:26 pm Purchasing awakening

    I think I lost my previous post, so I’ll try again…
    I must confess that I was probably buffering too when I was getting these solicitations years ago. I was quickly deleting them without thinking much about it. Sometimes I even donated money being crushed by ‘feminine dominance’ and ‘peer pressure’….
    It was so shocking to see all these solicitations piled up in my Deleted items box. Now I can simply see it all for what it is: shameless money-squeezing scam designed to pay for a excessive life style of one greedy individual. Look they would sell anything – dinners, breakfasts, his published ‘thoughts’, his videos, tours, even pictures taken with him, even book signing! Every day there is a pressure to buy, buy, buy… What for?? And we fools were buying… And smiling… and going deeper and deeper in credit card debt…and declaring bancruptcy…and blaming c-influence… Could I be so gullible?
    It’s humbling to see this now.
    It’s amazing to see how much money these events were raising… Where did it all go? They say “Apollo belongs to all of us”. So what happened to ‘my part’ of it when I left?….

    OK here’s more excerpts from 2004. Gabriella is right – things got worse in 2006… May be I’ll get to it too since I still have some from 2006. But let’s read some examples of ‘divine marketing’ of 2004 first…
    Enjoy. (And YES it’s all real. I only copy and paste and shortened it a little to save space. Also I took out names and phone ## but I haven’t added a word.)

    We have to raise $4,000 more to meet our $12,000 target.
    So far, all tickets have been sold within Apollo. We’d like outlying centers to
    purchase at least $2,000 for this auction.
    _________________________________
    There are 2 more days to enter the 4 July Prize Drawing!
    You can be the winner of one of the pieces of jewelry or a trip to Apollo/ Athens. We have raised $8750 by now and
    we have to raise $3250 more to meet our goal.
    _________________________________
    Touch the Gods with our Teacher in Greece. (2004)
    The ATHENA Tour with Robert – $2600 euros.
    The POSEIDON Tour with Robert’s teachings – $650 euros.
    Reception with Robert -35 euros
    Lunch with Robert – 220 euros (seated)
    Breakfast with Robert – 220 euros (seated)
    Dinner with Robert – 300 euros (seated)
    International meeting with Robert – 180 euros(first row), 150 euros (second row), 90 euros (general seating)
    Buffet reception with Robert – 20 euros
    Tea with Robert – 200 euros (seated)
    Credit cards accepted
    When should I book a ticket for Greece? RIGHT NOW!
    _______________________________
    Let us return again and again to the state of effort, to the miraculous present! The glorious gifts of the gods are not to be cast aside. Homer
    New prizes selected by our dear Teacher!
    Please visit our website and go to the Jewelry Prize Drawing
    and enter the drawing by purchasing a bookmark.
    Price is $44 (36 euro).
    _______________________________
    One of us could join Robert in his journey to Russia, October 9-13! Any of us can have a chance for only $10.
    95 students have already entered and we look forward for the next 85 entries. To enter: Reply in this moment to …
    Contact the raffle coordinator in your center or your regional raffle coordinator if you are in a center. Call … or email right now to … if you are in Apollo.
    _______________________________
    Dear Friends,
    The present moment can even bring you thoughts about
    the Jewelry Prize Drawing.
    Presence please.
    Visit our web site:
    and go to the Jewelry Prize Drawing to find out about the Special Prize.
    Presence please. The bookmark price is $44 (36 euro).
    _______________________________
    Because the Drawing for the Buenos Aires trip will take place this Sunday, November 7 at the Galleria before the meeting, you will need to buy your ticket now! Reply now to …
    ______________________________
    This year’s Holiday “Remembrance” Auction already started with the Thanksgiving Prize Drawing (have you bought your bookmark yet?) to be drawn on November 25th. Robert is offering more Holiday gifts that will be included on the Christmas Prize Drawing to be launched right after the Thanksgiving.
    ______________________________
    Dining with Robert – Here is Robert’s schedule:
    Monday 22:Goethe Room-Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$150.
    Tuesday 23:Goethe Room-Dinner-7:00 p.m.-$200.
    Thursday 25:Thanksgiving Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$200.
    Thanksgiving Dinner-3:30 p.m.-$350.
    Friday 26:Goethe Room-Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$150.
    Saturday 27:Goethe Room-Breakfast-8:30 a.m.-$150.
    Goethe Room-Dinner-7:00 p.m.-$200.
    Sunday 28:Goethe Room lunch for 20 at 12:00 p.m. after meeting- $250-at table/$200 with partner/$100 standing
    Monday 29:Goethe Room-Bon Voyage Breakfast-6:30 a.m. $150.
    ______________________________
    Can you help us reach the goal?
    Robert’s goal for the Holiday Prize Drawing is $18000 and we have raised $2600 so far. Please purchase a $44 or $12 bookmark now and we will enter you in the Prize Drawing. The first 5 Holiday Prize Drawing winners will be chosen at the Live Auction on December 12!
    Only 3 more days to enter!
    Have you bought your tickets yet?
    _____________________________
    How wonderful to see so many students from all over the world visiting Apollo! Robert is teaching more than ever having THREE teaching events VERY DAY!
    A group of students in Apollo have produced at Robert’s request video recordings of what he considers highest moments of his teaching. Keep up to date with Robert’s conscious teaching and take the opportunity to purchase a video! Have one of your friends visiting here bring it back to you! Purchase your favorite video by visiting our web site by login into propylaia and click on the Apollo Auction link.
    __________________________________
    Dear Friends,
    Here’s a wonderful New Year’s Resolution for sustaining the New Man within you: Create or add to a personal Video Library of Robert’s Teaching Events.
    This collection will provide nourishment for your higher centers for many years to come as well as help the School to grow by contributing much needed monies to our Projects Fund. It’s a win-win situation!
    We offer you the following sale items to begin, or add to, your collection: Select 3 items for $100 or EU75
    Select 4 items for $130 or EU100
    Select 5 items for $150 or EU115
    CD’s: Travelling with Robert – volume 1, 2, 3, Dinner with Robert – volume 1, 2, 3, Meeting with the Teacher – volume 1, 2, 3. Select 3 items for $44 of EU35
    __________________________________
    Dear Companions,
    The table of Love is the table of the magician.
    We have seen enough of the lower centers, it is time to see world twelve. Join us this weekend and the coming weekend at the Teaching Events with Robert!
    ___________________________________
    Dear friends traveling to Milan,
    Robert is offering to seat with you and sign a volume of a book chosen by you at the reception after the meeting in Milan.
    If you would like to purchase a volume of “Best Thoughts” or Thoughts from the Teacher”, please contact X in Milan. You can also purchase a volume at the Apollo Media Products table after the meeting. If you would like to bring your own volume of a precious book, please do so and contact X.
    Book signing: EU 50
    Dedication: EU 100.


  515. “Here’s a wonderful New Year’s Resolution for sustaining the New Man within you: Create or add to a personal Video Library of Robert’s Teaching Events.”

    Again I’m struck by how obvious it is now that RB sold his soul for money (and sex). The crass commercialism of this “spiritual school” is beyond parody.


  516. While printing Nisargadatta’s I Am That, I found myself reading this page I’m sharing below. One reason is he does mention ‘gods’. Similarly HWL Poonja had spent decades in company of gods (especially one of them: Krishna) before he met Ramana Maharshi. (As a reference to Roberts gods.)

    It’s a bit lengthy.

    (begins with Nisargadatta (=M) speaking of his guru)

    “M: His words were true and so they came true. True words always come true. My Guru did nothing; his words acted because they were true. Whatever I did, came from within, un-asked and unexpected.
    Q: The Guru started a process without taking any part in it?
    M: Put it as you like. Things happen as they happen — who can tell why and how? I did nothing deliberately. All came by itself — the desire to let go, to be alone, to go within.
    Q: You made no efforts whatsoever?
    M: None. Believe it or not, I was not even anxious to realise. He only told me that I am the Supreme and then died. I just could not disbelieve him. The rest happened by itself. I found myself changing — that is all. As a matter of fact, I was astonished. But a desire arose in me to verify his words. I was so sure that he, could not possibly have told a lie, that I felt I shall either realise the full meaning of his words or die. I was feeling quite determined, but did not know what to do. I would spend hours thinking of him and his assurance, not arguing, but just remembering what he told me.
    Q: What happened to you then? How did you know that you are the Supreme?
    M: Nobody came to tell me. Nor was I told so inwardly. In fact, it was only in the beginning when I was making efforts, that I was passing through some strange experiences; seeing lights, hearing voices, meeting gods and goddesses and conversing with them. Once the Guru told me: ‘You are the Supreme Reality’, I ceased having visions and trances and became very quiet and simple. I found myself desiring and knowing less and less, until I could say in utter astonishment: ‘I know nothing, I want nothing.’
    Q: Were you genuinely free of desire and knowledge, or did you impersonate a jnani according to the image given to you by your Guru?
    M: I was not given any image, nor did I have one. My Guru never told me what to expect.
    Q: More things may happen to you. Are you at the end of your journey?
    M: There was never any journey. I am, as I always was.
    Q: What was the Supreme Reality you were supposed to reach?
    M: I was undeceived, that is all. I used to create a world and populate it — now I don’t do it any more.
    Q: Where do you live, then?
    M: In the void beyond being and non-being, beyond consciousness. This void is also fullness; do not pity me. It is like a man saying: ‘I have done my work, there is nothing left to do’.
    Q: You are giving a certain date to your realisation. It means something did happen to
    you at that date. What happened?
    M: The mind ceased producing events. The ancient and ceaseless search stopped – l wanted nothing, expected nothing — accepted nothing as my own. There was no ‘me’ left to strive for. Even the bare ‘I am’ faded away. The other thing that I noticed was that I lost all my habitual certainties. Earlier I was sure of so many things, now I am sure of nothing. But I feel that I have lost nothing by not knowing, because all my knowledge was false. My not knowing was in itself knowledge of the fact that all knowledge is ignorance, that ‘I do not know’ is the only true statement the mind can make. Take the idea ‘I was born’. You may take it to be true. It is not. You were never born, nor will you ever die. It is the idea that was born and shall die, not you. By identifying yourself with it you became mortal. Just like in a cinema all is light, so
    does consciousness become the vast world. Look closely, and you will see that all names and forms are but transitory waves on the ocean of consciousness, that only consciousness can be said to be, not its transformations. In the immensity of consciousness a light appears, a tiny point that moves rapidly and traces shapes, thoughts and feelings, concepts and ideas, like the pen writing on paper. And the ink that leaves a trace is memory. You are that tiny point and by your movement the world is ever re- created. Stop moving, and there will be no world. Look within and you will find that the point of light is the reflection of the immensity of light in the body, as the sense ‘I am’. There is only light, all else appears.”

    innin (@walla.com)


  517. Thanks Ames, for the clarity of your recents posts and for the Goethe quote. What is expressed in that quote continues to sustain me even to this day since I left. Every word of it is true.

    unoanimo:
    Actually, I don’t drink. These days alcohol just gives me a bad headache and goes against my sufi practice.

    Is it true you are still ‘in’ and ‘contributing’ to RB’s salary? If so, that must be one hell of a buffer between those two trains of thought…


  518. on June 28, 2007 at 3:51 pm Purchasing awakening

    To Rhino Neal 510: I still believed RB was a “conscious being” and separated that from the ghastly fundraising, which I blamed on Alison.
    Yes, me too! I believed in ‘kind loving Robert’ for long time…
    But think: who is behind all this relentless pushing for money, who selects all the trinkets, fountains, lamps and other ‘projects’, luxuriously travels the world to see ballets and to cruise the Nile and forces community to pay for all this? Do you really think it’s those salaried students who are so eager to collect your money and therefore keep sending you up to 3 stupid solicitations per day? Do you think it’s their ‘initiative’??? Of course not.

    iIt’s Robert himself all day long and his insatiable greed for money. He orders people to do what hey do… And they do…


  519. You can download the whole I Am That from
    h**p://rapidshare.com/files/39871579/Nisargadatta_I_AM_THAT.pdf.html

    innin (@walla.com)


  520. on June 28, 2007 at 4:40 pm Lust for Life

    To ‘a Former Student’ #373

    Thanks for your critique of my post #297. You may be quite right implying that I have no reasoning powers; I understood your posting about as much as you appeared to understand mine!

    I was trying to say that we get so caught up in all the words, mind games, systems and techniques that supposedly lead us to being aware, that we miss just being where we are and being what we are for much of the time, which is my current interpretation of ‘awakening’ if you wish to use that term.

    I have had my fill of it now and am ceasing to blog, having followed it since it’s inception.

    It’s been great meeting you all in cyberspace and I wish all ‘innies’, ‘outies’ and ‘in betweenies’ the best of luck in truly being what we are.

    Bye Sheik, and bye fellow bloggers!

    Love and Lust


  521. Vena #512

    “They seem to have a desperate need for approval…”

    That hit home! I have to admit that was me too, 25 years ago. I was a young neophyte seeker, quite vulnerable and spiritually immature. I was understood that to become more spiritually aware I must relinquish my false personality or ego and place my trust in a teacher. But Robert used this to his sexual advantage to satisify his own personal desires at my expense like a film director uses his ‘casting couch’.

    The spell wore off when I realized I was not the only one sharing my sex energy with Robert and he started pulling my strings and arbitrarily playing me like a trout. I would not let myself become emotionally dependent upon him. I didn’t join a school to play the role of a teacher’s sexual satellite.

    Only when you respect yourself can you gain the respect of others.


  522. For those interested in, or open to, astrological interpretation, the following article on the current Saturn-Neptune opposition offers an interesting perspective on strong planetary influences that may be a factor in the greater process of which ‘the blog’ is but one manifestation.

    http://www.astro-noetics.com/sat_nep_1.html

    title and first paragraph:

    “Saturn-Neptune and the Desert of the Real”

    From late 2005 through 2007, the planets Neptune and Saturn will form an opposition to each other. This particular alignment will be the most important alignment of the latter half of this decade, informing the cultural dynamics as we head into the more turbulent, chaotic potentials of the next decade. This essay will aspire to illuminate the many archetypal motifs associated with this alignment—both its problematic and constructive possibilities.


  523. 464 no person.

    FOF Spam avoidance.

    You cannot unsubscribe. If you want to have access to the propylaia web site you need to be subscribed to the FOF spam lists so you have an email address on file.

    The solution is:
    1) Set up a new email adddress only for Propylaia access.
    2) Udpate your records.
    3) Do not have your emails downloaded from this address to your email program.
    4) Check youre web mail every now and again in case someone has sent a real message to you at the listed email address.

    I had enough of all the unpleasant reactions to the constant emails. My reactions that is. They were unpleasant because they were correct insights into a corrupt organisation that I could not buffer sufficiently. All the Hard sells, lies etc.
    For example, for Robert Burton’s birtheday in 2005 we were offered the opportuinity to contribute to purchasing a lovely humming bird broach for him. The broach was already part of his extensive multi-milion dollar jewelry collection. It turned my stomach to have such a blatant lie in a ‘real school’. You cannot believe emails that come out from the corrupt people who run the institution of the Fellowship of Friends. There is no integrity, only manipulation and deciet. If they are honest it is because they need to be somewhat honest in order to continue to retain power. It is not because they are sincerely honest from within. It is all power and politics. This is normal and would not be a surprise in a ‘life organisation’ where one at least has laws to keep criminality somewhat in check. However in what purports to be an estoteric school of christianty with a consious teacher it is unacceptable.
    Remember Gurdieff made a sheep conscious? When asked what he did with the sheep he said they ate it as that is what one does with sheep.
    I suspect that we have been domesticated and are being farmed as relatively awakened sheep who have become dependent on the farm, farm laborers and of course the top of the food chain – the farmer, who milks his inner circle lamb sausages as well as shearing all.
    The only way to survive in the school is to separate from reason and discrimination and go with the attitudes that you have created to allow you to stay. There is no doubt in my mind that this is a form of sleep. Even if it feels good and holy and you feel part of something big and important.
    Time to leave for me.


  524. It may be easy to overlook that the fundraising has been partly responsible for a lot of the beautiful impressions at Isis, such as the gardens, statutes, art, theatron, events, etc.

    One unforgettable moment at one of these many advertised events is still exactly what it is: unforgettable! Worth it? you decide that for yourself.

    It is kind of curious to see so much complaining about the fundraising when this is all strictly voluntary!

    As I mentioned before, I made the decision to “unsubscribe” and not sponsor some of these activities. I feel sorry for the folks on salary who have accepted the job to incessantly go around asking for contributions.

    I do not know what Robert would say about me not taking part in the “purchasing awakening”-style, but I know one thing for certain, he will not ask–he it too busy working on teaching events, meetings, etc. He just enjoys the results of the fundraising and he does not take part in it either (once he put the thing in motion).

    We are responsible for our choices!

    Siddiq


  525. Newcomer you said “I had enough of all the unpleasant reactions to the constant emails. My reactions that is.”

    These were/are my feelings exactly–it was time for me to do something about my reactions–i did it by eliminating the unnecessray suffering.

    I understand quite a few reading this blog felt this way about the entire school experience–just leave was perhaps the answer. There is no right or wrong choice–it is a personal decision that has to come from one’s heart.


  526. on June 28, 2007 at 6:13 pm Cake please

    KA 350
    You asked , my story, here and no where else. Among those who have bared their soul to the light.

    Okay, here it goes. Slightly abbreviated version. Not dwelling on the dark side, knowing all here have all ready seen that.

    First in FOF speak, please don’t roll your eyes, it will explain much, I know somewhere deep inside, something will say,”Well no wonder”.

    Here I am, a solar jovial lunar. Jack of hearts. More solar than is healthy. Did you know if you have enough solar you have your own God. No matter how many times you hit the pavement you don’t bruise.

    Oh, but such slow learners. Just can’t see the down side. Even when it is poking you in the eye. Just a speck of dust, my friend. If I keep blinking the pain will stop.

    I am, in the words of my esteemed colleague WhaleRider, a student of little consequence. Nurtured most of my Fellowship life in the Hinterlands. Never a High Roller but a good student none the less.

    A little quirky my countrymen, always keeping one foot on the ground. So bouncing city to city, babes in tow, started to bend the rules “just a bit”. When the tiniest bit of power came my way, well I abused it. On the ”six week list” no matter come on down. We need you as much as you need us, my dear Friend.

    Well, the Powers That Be soon caught wind of my flippant love of my fellow student, and total disregard of all that should be. I was demoted and my religious visa application questioned. But was I good student? Not in their eyes, but oh yes I was. Truly.

    Solar tip: When facing Goliath always have a David in your court. And I did and she went to bat for me. A friend to this day.

    So, there I was in the land of the golden. Knew I was in trouble early on, when one of the illustrious said all that I had ever experienced was some kind of prep school for what was to take place here.(Renaissance/Apollo/Isis) Au contraire, my friend.

    Like some country girl come to the big city. Disappearing among the masses. Not quite ready to become one more dispensable cog in the biggest of big machines.

    Yes, I saw love here, I saw camaraderie, but I also saw total disregard for the part for the sake of the whole. Clouded eyes, heartbreak, enough of that here.

    Then inch by inch the disconnect began. Years ago. Wish I could say it was for some noble cause, but to really I know not why.

    So many dark days, so much despair, so much isolation. Always blaming myself for not being all the student I could be. Never being enough. All my fault.

    A ray of hope. My small circle of friends, one by one began to open their hearts. Their strength became my strength. I watched them one by one cross the Great Divide. Then look back at me luminous, radiant.

    And to my friends still in, please know the Beloved is you

    Into the light,
    Cake


  527. Dear Siddiq,
    with thousands of dollars I used to contibute each year basically to pay for R.’s entertainment, travels, gardens and statues around his house – the question “was it worth it?’ – heck, NO!
    With 1-2 brief visits to Isis per year these are damn expensive “impressions” for those who don’t live there (and for those who live there too!)…
    There is a national park 10 minutes from my house, amazingly beautiful, with lakes and mountains and admission is free… Metropolitan museum in New York is also basically free – you pay what you want, often just a quarter… It’s unforgettable, too.
    There is just something called “GREED”. Incurable insatiable greed that people refuse to see in their “Beloved Teacher”.

    Voluntery fundraising? Dear friend, have you ever been agressively approached and lectured by authority fugures why you MUST constribute? Often it is done in front of others (who already did). It is intimidating, humiliating and very pushy. One feels cornered. No, I would’n call it “voluntery”.
    One is under heavy pressure, constant never ending very heavy pressure to donate and buy.
    You are lying if you deny this.
    RB is so busy preparing his “Teaching events” because that’s what brings him money – lots of money. He is searching for stuff to sell to you, silly stories and unverifiable interpretations – and hypnotized people are eager to pay for this utter BS and call it a “teaching”!
    When are you going to finally see? Wake up already.


  528. No Person, thanks–I am trying. I am with you on all your points except the “worth” of the teaching. S


  529. No person 526

    There is just something called “GREED”. Incurable insatiable greed that people refuse to see in their “Beloved Teacher”.

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

    The greedy always feel deprived, that is what drives them.

    The only “objective impression” the Fellowship property conveys is that it is a paltry monument to the feature of greed.


  530. In regards to #515 from innin, I had an experience like he describes as “realizing,” during a time of incredibly intense physical and emotional stress. I had a sudden realization that any kind of striving or effort is completely at odds with the process of becoming, because striving takes one away from where one is and focuses one’s attention on some imaginary future time when one will achieve something. I hope that makes sense, I can’t explain it any better. This remarkable state only lasted about 3 or 4 days, but during that time I felt extraordinarily free from the ordinary pressures to make my behavior conform to the expectations of others. I just felt free, with no past or future in some sense. When the state ended, I felt no need to try and retrieve it, but was content to let it go, and that is where it has remained for the most part.

    The fact that the Fellowship seems so focused on telling students they will achieve something in another lifetime shows how far they have strayed IMO — based on my experience, that’s about as far from the mark as you can get.


  531. 528
    “The only “objective impression” the Fellowship property conveys is that it is a paltry monument to the feature of greed.”

    Not to mention the complete nouveau riche lack of taste and grotesque excess. A flamers fever dream as it were.


  532. my2bits:

    Thanks for that link. I’ve been following the Saturn/Neptune opposition for a while. On Feb 28 2007 the opposition was exact and the US stock market dropped sharply. In the succeeding months it recovered and rose to new highs. Then on June 25, due to Saturn’s retrograde motion, the opposition was again exact. The market dropped significantly again and is now recovering.

    People may scoff, but these patterns are observable. The problem is trying to predict using them! Chaos theoreticians use an equally mystical approach to recognizing and mapping patterns in complex systems.

    Straying a bit off topic here, but read Richard Tarnas’ Comos and Psyche for a detailed, in-depth study celestial influences. As Above, So Below.


  533. 476. Mole. “Please feel free to insert the lunatic group of your choice if you dont want to consider Moslems”.
    ————————————————————————-:But thats just it mr mole, or mrs, Its that I want to EXternally consider them.
    Isnt it enough that we’re over there bombing the crap out of them with depleted uranium against their wishes. Must we demonise them as well!
    Do you have any friends from Iran? I doubt it, whereas I have many. One of them told me he was going home soon to see how many of his family are still alive.
    I dont suppose you’re to blame, you are no doubt a product of the government propaganda which is issued at such times, to turn a race of people into animals so that we dont care so much what happens to them.
    Think of the way the Jewish people were depicted by the nazi regime. Its an old technique, once you have de-humanised them you can do whatever you like.
    But if I must insert a lunatic extremist group then it would have to be Cheney and Rumsfeld and Bush’s father who are all big investors in the war machine therefore no war no cash flow. Cy. by the way you are aware that the elder bush’s helped finance the nazis and that many nazis were taken to America during “operation paperclip” google it; and that one of them helped to found the CIA. please check . If im wrong i’ll eat my toupee. Cy


  534. on 28 Jun 2007 at 5:34 am495 Bruce

    “OK, I thought of one more thing to say.

    I think the FOF hierarchy should be wearing uniforms.

    Orange jump suits.”

    And carrying a banner saying “mission accomplished!”


  535. 532

    “once you have de-humanised them you can do whatever you like.”

    Nailed it.

    Like HC’s post on not owning one’s body.


  536. Cake Please #525

    To be luminous and radiant makes you a student of some consequence! (It takes one to know one, my esteemed colleague.) Keep shining! That’s what it means to bare one’s soul. This blog is a great place to chip away the slag. Then we can all bask in each other’s glow.

    What was the ‘tipping point’ for you to leave?

    Welcome Newcomer!

    “The only way to survive in the school is to separate from reason and discrimination and go with the attitudes that you have created to allow you to stay. There is no doubt in my mind that this is a form of sleep.”

    Yes, I agree. You must inhibit the independent thinking of your higher intellect to stay and turn your higher emotional center into fois gras by force feeding it impressions with the feeding tube of Apollo/Isis. Then you get spread on toast for someone else’s moment of dining pleasure.


  537. In relation to the pseudo teachers excesses, it wasn’t the big things that made me begin to doubt, it was small personal incidents. Like one day being told to go with the secretary and buy some new trousers. When I protested that I didn’t need new trousers and that I didn’t want to use the money that some poor student had scraped together to buy somethng I didn’t need, I was over ruled. It occured to me later that RB liked gift wrapping on his gifts from C inf, that the wrapping enhanced the pleasure.
    Another time he and I went shopping alone and I saw how totally unused he was to someone saying no to him, when an old queen antique dealer, refused point blank to haggle with him he was completely helpless he became completely tongue tied and flustered. His lack of ability to separate from it got me thinking.
    It is amazing how much I was able to internally readjust in order to accomodate these kind of things and it helps me understand the mental gymnastics and bending over backward that poor current students must go through. Cy.


  538. “Not to mention the complete nouveau riche lack of taste and grotesque excess. A flamers fever dream as it were.”

    Bruce is right. The sad thing is that many students don’t know any better and are dazzled by the extravaganza and feel personally glamorous by association with something that they naively believe to be elegant and sophisticated. Robert is like a country bumkin who got some money and is pathetically trying to reinvent himself as European aristocracy. It is just embarassing. Does anyone have photos of the full length portraits he had painted of himself posing as Bernard Berenson?
    Ludicrious.

    Bruce, I wish you could see the interior of the Galleria now. You would hoot with disbelief. The ceilings have grotesque murals (technically well painted but artistically and esthetically impoverished) of nude students posing as mythological characters, even Julian Hart, completely recognizable, with an erection in the entry way. The back ground color of the mural sin the main salon is pepto-bismol pink. I am not exaggerating.


  539. 537

    “nude students posing as mythological characters, even Julian Hart, completely recognizable, with an erection in the entry way. The back ground color of the mural sin the main salon is pepto-bismol pink.”

    I find my gag reflex is still functioning. But I’m sure RB’s isn’t.


  540. 533

    Better “emission accomplished”.


  541. on June 28, 2007 at 8:18 pm Veronicapoe

    For those interested, “Outside the Lodge – Spring 1972” is now online:

    http://www.archive.org/details/TheEsotericHistoryArchive_249


  542. cyclops #536

    My heart goes out to you, dude. I still have my trousers… I keep them as a monument to my own gullibility and a sleazy reminder of the incestuous relationship I endured. It’s nothing to be proud of and certainly a low point in my evolution that I use as springboard into a better life.


  543. Bruce #495: How about mauve straight-jackets?


  544. That would work too.


  545. Purchasing awakening:

    I would suggest you no longer delete such e-mails, but save them “for the record”.

    As many here have expressed, a “church” that publicly lavishes its leader with extravagant gifts, vacations and travel, while creating a community dependent upon public welfare for health support may arguably be in violation of its IRS 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status.

    It is a moral, if not legal abuse of the non-profit classification, and reflects a general lack of conscience within the Fellowship of Friends leadership.

    Perhaps the next Greater Fellowship gathering should include a very public, and media-covered vigil outside the gates of Isis. After all, tax-exemption merely redistributes the tax burden throughout society.

    In other words, we all pay for Robert’s indulgences.


  546. on June 28, 2007 at 8:43 pm Purchasing awakening

    More ‘Divine marketing’ from FOF:

    The Abundance Fountain (Feb. 2005)
    It will be a gift to our Dear Teacher as a combined celebration of Valentine’s Day and his Chrystallization. The cost of the Fountain is $140,000. In order to purchase the fountain for our city, Apollo, we need to raise $70,000 by next week. It means that we may have to go above and beyond what our instinctive centers would “allow” us to do. To meet this aim we established minimum “gift levels” of $50 for salaried students to $2500 for the rest of the school (these are only a minimum, so please be extremely generous).
    Clarification of Per Student Gift Levels: $50 / $100/ $250 / $500 / $1000 / $2500 (Make up to four payments) Please make your contribution before February 14th, Midnight
    To make your contribution go to Propylaia – ROBERT’S GIFT.
    ********************************************
    Dear Friends,
    Would you like to support Robert’s aim of growing even more palm trees for Apollo? You can help by enjoying the Apollo palm jam from the last harvest.
    We will also be there with the Apollo Media Products and welcome your generous donation of beautiful objects for the coming Auction.
    *******************************************
    TEACHING EVENTS IN CAIRO – April 3rd 2005
    5:30pm PHOTOS WITH ROBERT with Pyramids view
    6:00pm RECEPTION WITH ROBERT CAIRO April 4th
    6:30pm SPECIAL DINNER WITH ROBERT LUXOR – April 5th
    5:30pm PHOTOS WITH ROBERT with Nile view
    6:00pm RECEPTION WITH ROBERT LUXOR – April 6th
    8:30am BREAKFAST WITH ROBERT LUXOR – April 7th
    8:30am BREAKFAST WITH ROBERT
    6:30pm DINNER WITH ROBERT LUXOR – April 8th
    10:00am MEETING WITH ROBERT followed by reception
    PHOTOS WITH ROBERT in the Garden
    3:00pm TEA WITH ROBERT
    NILE CRUISE – April 9th-12th
    events on board (to be determined)
    ******************************************
    Dear Friends,
    The Teacher would like students throughout the School to know his travel plans for the coming year. (2005)
    At Apollo :
    April 20th – May 23rd
    June 15th – July 25th
    August 17th – September 26th
    October 19th – November 28th
    December 14th – January 9th

    Traveling :
    March 28th – April 20th
    May 23rd – June 15th
    July 25th – August 17th
    September 26th – October 19th
    November 28th – December 14th
    *****************************
    We have prepared a wonderful picture of Robert to celebrate his birthday and mark the beginning of our School’s study of the Egyptian mysteries. This picture shows Robert standing before the Nile River. The river appears in the
    background like a horizon, with our beloved Teacher appearing above it.
    Our Teacher will be sitting with you, before the Birthday Celebration dinner at Apollo d’Oro on Saturday May 14th, to sign your photo of him, allowing you to spend a few moments with him on this special day. Pictures without signature are also available. This photo is his way of contributing to the building of Apollo.
    Shall we join him?
    Please enter the Apollo Auction through Propylaia or contact us at 692-xxxx.


  547. It is interesting how Nisargadatta’s words flow over/through you like liquid gold and you know them to be true.


  548. 545

    “This photo is his way of contributing to the building of Apollo.”

    Don’t knock yourself out Robert.


  549. arthur 542

    Bruce #495: How about mauve straight-jackets?

    ***********

    Know the tastes of the charlatan saint by the uniform design his slave followers wear as their communal costume.


  550. 541. Whalerider.
    We appear to have as you say used it as a springboard but I’m worried that many of the others haven’t been able to do this. It’s hard to tell because if they didn’t shut up they were shipped out. Hopefully some more of them have survived enough to make it here, time will tell. Perhaps if someone knows of any they can reach out to them.
    The best to you.Cy


  551. 505 Comrade

    No, actually Mole didn’t write that. That was Howard Carter in Post 434. Mole was quoting Howard, and then Siddiq mistakenly attributed the quote to Mole, and then proceeded to criticize Howard’s statement, and so on.

    ______________________________

    Whose on second and is What on third?

    Sounds like Fellowship of Friends editing committee minutes.

    _____________________________

    510 Rhino Neal

    Contrast him with Nisargadatta, who lived in his tiny Bombay apartment till his death. At one point his US students told them they would like to collect some money to buy a car for him. He told them he wasn’t interested. That’s someone I could trust!
    _______________________

    Yes, and you can still trust him.

    Thank you for his Name.
    __________________________

    512 Vena

    They seem to have a desperate need for approval and exalt over any little crumb of attention thrown their way. It was embarassing to observe. There is something very childlike and immature in this behavior and to see grown men behave this way is sad. Howard Carter is one of these. I could name a dozen others but most people here know the members that I am referring to.
    _____________________

    Yes, Vena, Robert Burton is a multi-archetypal sponge with no discretion, no limits (unless its not enough)…

    He blithely sells ice cream to those buried in avalanches.

    To the hard core women he is ‘father’ and ‘son’,
    To the ‘boys’ (since their momma boys) he’s ‘momma’ and at times ‘daddy’, particularly to those ‘not so good looking alpha males’ that don’t get invited to the margarita dinners and wine cellar catacombs; yes and people live down there too, like sardines ready for peeling at a moment’s call.

    To many, who are not at ISIS, either in the Bay area or overseas, he’s simply the cerebral affirmation of where they need to go, which, to me, is a very odd place to want to aim for; at least after reading this blog: though the older die-hards are still hot on his tracks, sniffing forwards as he’s unknowingly jogging backwards… I feel a cerebral meltdown coming upon ISIS, her gold leaf may need re-leafing by the end of August.
    ______________________________

    516 Whalerider

    unoanimo:
    Actually, I don’t drink. These days alcohol just gives me a bad headache and goes against my sufi practice.

    Is it true you are still ‘in’ and ‘contributing’ to RB’s salary? If so, that must be one hell of a buffer between those two trains of thought…
    __________________________

    Just a little early morning light humor that was my friend; not meant to rub you the wrong way: yes, my experience as well, I used to be able to drink rather stealth like, though something has changed in me, for lack of a better american word ‘constitutionally’ ~

    I simply cannot do it anymore, its odd; its more of an emotional non-prerequisite phenomenon and something too, connected to my conscience…can’t put it in words.

    Tell me how you connect not drinking to Sufi practices, curious…

    As to your ‘second question’: that little blurb by HC was a cigarette lighter held up in the darkness to test for snipers.

    I only can say this Whalerider, I am not a hypocrite or a holy-hypocrite, nor have I ever stated that I am in or out or ever was in the FoF … This keeps certain ‘officials’ at bay, scratching their litigious chins, as well as those who ‘think’ they know who I am and yet are not so ready to risk a defamation lawsuit order based on Fellowship of Friends high wiseacring applied to yours truly, aka, ‘Ready to Roll’…

    Take all my posts and ask the question again to yourself; therein your conscience will arise the true answer.

    As for those who have yet to grow lips on their conscience, they will just have to keep miming till someone understands that they need serious speech therapy.

    The Fellowship of Friends will be dissolved; this blog is the light that will dispel the cave mold;

    thank you for being a 1000 w halogen, I am grateful to have gotten to sense your being in here.

    We will certainly meet always.
    _______________________________

    523 Siddiq

    It is kind of curious to see so much complaining about the fundraising when this is all strictly voluntary!

    As I mentioned before, I made the decision to “unsubscribe” and not sponsor some of these activities. I feel sorry for the folks on salary who have accepted the job to incessantly go around asking for contributions.

    ______________________________

    Siddiq, I thought I knew who you were, I mean ‘really’, though, at this point, seeing your hobby depth of logical absurdity, I cannot rightly say that I do and if I do, then I’m going to leave it now as an intentional mystery and that actually, ‘I don’t’.

    You’ve given us two images here, one is something you call ‘voluntary’, that you then wonder why everyone is complaining about it, since, after all, its voluntary, i.e., why complain about something you’ve volunteered for or have the choice not to participate in? This is truly from your ‘little world’ whose missing the rest of the solar system.

    The second thing you say is how sorry you feel for those on salary who have to go around and ask for contributions.

    How is it that you feel sorry for ~
    people who are volunteering to be on salary,
    who are volunteering to be in a fourth way school, volunteering to be hypnotized by an affirmation of ‘teacher who gives no tests beyond his own ability to not pass them himself’ ~ who has no conscious disclaimer to all the prescribed psychic programming that takes place at ISIS; do you even know the working of the automatic psyche?
    Not to forget the ‘system’ which is not the ‘fourth way system.

    To learn ‘how’ it is that people can be hypnotized, suggested within, this would assist you I believe.

    Gurdjieff knew much about it, for, after all he was a world renown hypnotist and said that above all the weaknesses of human beings on the planet earth, the one greatest weakness was ~ Suggestibility.

    Now, take that one word and follow it all the way to its end, it will guide you into a world where it may be possible for you, yourself, to pop that balloon above your head that has your dehydrating heart in it.

    I advise heavy doses of Techno music, about a +4 on the bass and to go on a 5 day juice fast in the mean time.

    Not that I am suggesting this…

    BTW ~

    Yes, we’ve all volunteered to be incarnated in the flesh; yet this is no excuse not to be more than its costume-habits; we all have arrived on a stage, a stage, who no actor has ever met the director, this to me is enough to get to know the janitors (and mice).

    Siddiq, Please, for the sake of your own, before you met the Fallow hip of Fried ends, look deeper into all this mess, the spiritual chaos that lays just beneath all the fluff and affirmations…geez!

    Cheez Whiz Ard

    As a child I thought cheese in a can, i.e., soft cheese in a compressed gas… Oh, its called ‘Cheese Whiz’… So, I thought this was the greatest, I mean, cheese in a can, no fuss, no muss; then one day, after contemplating the triad of ‘Cheese Whiz’, (unbeknown to me as being called a ‘triad’ thought) I thought ~

    Hummmm…

    Soft cheese of unknown cow, if its a cow, maybe its a cow in a laboratory, an I-Cow & softy staying processes so the cheese is always ‘smoooth’ + gaseous substance of unknown origin + meal can made to sit on shelf for 1+ years. (?)

    I dawned on me that I was eating mummified, embalmed cheesy stuff… Blah!

    I truly felt kinda enlightened, albeit from a ‘Cheese Whiz’ first force, but hey, a young budding magnetic center has to set down roots somewhere, why not in a big crater of cheese whiz?

    So, please, for the sake of Meher Baba, think, feel, be this mantra ~

    Burrrrr ton, Felllllll ow! ship! off fried ends cheeezzzz whizzzz.

    Now, say this one thousand times a day, just before sunrise, this should create a conscious crazy wisdom juxtaposition to the automatic one you’ve learned in the hills of the Sierra Nevada’s.

    This is not a suggestion, this is not a suggestion…

    _____________________________

    Love to you all.


  552. on June 28, 2007 at 9:26 pm Ames Gilbert

    Regarding the revelations from Purchasing awakening (#13-545).
    Astounding, there is really is no limit to Burton’s greed. As far as I can see, half his ‘working day’ seems to consist of phoning Alison or whoever, mentioning another ludicrous sum, dressing up the request with some gobbledygook about crystallization, “C-influence requests…” or whatever. Then off she goes to set the machinery in motion…

    And this is imaged as a kind of private hobby—so he gets to keep all the gross proceeds and fob off fundraising expenses on the FoF. I’m sure the project is sold as him relieving some the burden of the cost of his lifestyle from the poor students—but they get to pay anyway, don’t they? I’d bet there is some tax dodge going on, as well, like transfers to students with lower tax brackets, payment of taxes at the lower rate, then a quick ‘gift’ back to the source. Hey Siddiq, could you do some research and tell me if I’m right or wrong?

    Folks, please save all these kinds of ‘requests’ in full, and as Purchase awakening is doing, edit and publish some highlights. But, after doing so, don’t delete, keep the full thing. Ditto with written documents, videos, photos and so on. Make discreet recordings of your own, it’s easy to at least do audio with a miniature recorder. And these new cell phone cameras offer great potential! At some future point, if we can iron out copyright issues, we can publish them in full. By this I mean, astonishing as Purchasing’s offerings are, there is also value in seeing the full set; the impact of thousands of requests a year must be terrific.

    So save it all for posterity; I’m willing to store it if you have no room physically or on your hard drive!

    Ames


  553. Can you imagine Alisons resume when it’s time to look for another job?

    She’ll be perfect for the “add extra inches to your tool” ad compaign.


  554. on June 28, 2007 at 9:42 pm Cake please

    Dear WhaleRider /535

    My tipping point.

    Kind of slinky-like ring by ring, until there is no going back.

    Relatively fast compared with some.
    Somewhere between Journey Forth by Day, Bible Keys and Thirty Stars it began.

    I was a dilettante working one day a week with the palm octave. It some how made no sense. These gentle women working in the most extreme conditions: mud to your ankles or 100 degrees in the shade to fulfill the will (whim) of the Teacher.

    Did it really matter to him that this devoted student was still struggling to get legal status for her husband? So difficult because she did not make enough money on salary to support one of them, two was out of the question.

    Or that the sweet Mexican student who suddenly disappeared. Catapulted to Europe because she and Robert loved the same man. And no one would say a word. They closed their eyes and shook their head. The will of the Gods. Please.

    Something was definitely amiss.

    But still last November, there I was at a small Intervention Dinner for a friend, who for all appearances headed out. Girard was the ringer, he was open and honest. But in the end it all went pie shaped.

    My friend had more reasons to leave than most, but still he stayed, trying to make sense of it all.

    Then he sent me the first links: one for Kiran, the other for the blog.

    This is all so negative, and what are they talking about. Too late for me. I had already bitten the apple.

    Question after question, my friends laughing in amazement that I was so clueless. So if ignorance is bliss, knowledge can be hell. But in the end it is the ultimate freedom.

    So my tipping point, those I loved. And you, WhaleRider and those who took the courageous first step for all of us, the fearful and hesitant. Saying in the most gentle way, Wake up, fool your life is waiting for you.

    And my compadre WhaleRider, I know it is so true

    Still haven”t touched down
    Cake


  555. Cake please 553

    My tipping point.

    Kind of slinky-like ring by ring, until there is no going back.

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

    It is nostalgia mixed with resolve, looking back as the bridge across the Rubicon burns.


  556. on June 28, 2007 at 9:56 pm Skeptical Optimist

    Purchasing Awakening (various posts)

    Question from one long gone:

    I don’t see any “opportunities” in these lists for the other “man #5”? Doesn’t Girard get to do his own fundraising? Aren’t people lining up to pay him to sign his book(s)? Won’t people pay to have “dinner with Girard”? After all these years and devotion, what are his perks?

    Curious minds want to know . . .

    530 Bruce

    Not to mention the complete nouveau riche lack of taste and grotesque excess. A flamers fever dream as it were.

    This guy never had any taste, did he? Rode on the back of those who did (Sheila Grunwald was certainly one of the first, many since). Looking at the photos Janna posted on GF, I was reminded of the “taste” of Donald Trump (although he’s not a “flamer”), i.e. “Isn’t there someplace else we can gild??” The whole thing looks like a sad and inappropriate pastiche of decorative styles run amok. And the palm tree garden seems to be an imitation of many southern california gardens (an area Burton used to vastly prefer to Yuba county) like the Huntington.

    Considering all the ways these vast amounts of money could be spent, whether inside the group or outside, if you “follow the money” the real aim of all this activity (solely funding Burton’s whims) is most apparent.

    Like the Democrats in the House of Representatives, members actually have total control, if not the guts to use it=stop paying and the bad dream will end (probably pretty soon).

    Best to all.

    JoelF


  557. Earth is a pain factory–we have all verified this but there are those who dream a beautiful dream–while doing what we can to awaken.


  558. 556

    It’s not entirely a pain factory. I don’t care who said it. Personally I’m having a freaking ball.


  559. Bruce 557
    556

    It’s not entirely a pain factory. I don’t care who said it. Personally I’m having a freaking ball.

    ***********

    The actual quote, which comes from Orage, (and correct me if I’m wrong) is: “The Earth is a paint factory.”


  560. 558

    That makes much more sense.


  561. Regarding Skeptical Optimist’s post 555, “This guy never had any taste, did he?” — Joel, I was reminded of your story of running across Robert recently when you overheard him telling a lackey to go ask if the maple syrup was real. That just struck me as odd/wrong in so many ways. One, ordering someone to do something he could just as easily do himself. But primarily, if you have to ask if it’s real … what’s the point? He doesn’t have the taste to know? So then it becomes a question of, well, he may not know, but dammit he’s going to make sure it’s the real thing because it’s the best. Even if he clearly can’t tell the difference. I can’t quite get over that. It’s like a mini-psychodrama with waffles.


  562. on June 28, 2007 at 10:42 pm Skeptical Optimist

    558 Graduates

    Curious if anyone else has read The Oragean Version by C. Daly King? Outside the holdings of the G. Foundation, I believe this is the only major unpublished work of the early 4th way, by the “forgotten man” of G.’s teaching.

    I tried (unsuccessfully) to publish it some years ago, but couldn’t get King’s daughter to sign a contract.

    JoelF


  563. I was catapulted to the past when I heard Bernard Berenson’s name. I almost laughed out loud, remembering that phase. I don’t think I ever read a word of his, but I remember his books laying around the teaching houses an awful lot for a while. I guess I’m more the bluejeans and birkenstock type rather the trans-atlantic, super-wealthy art connoisseur, so he never quite appealed to me. His quotes in the journals never did much for me either I suppose. I know Robert worshipped him for a while, but I didn’t know about the full-length portraits.

    And what is it with all the “dear Teacher” and “our beloved Teacher”? That’s disgusting. Too much Kim Jong Ill for my taste.

    My ultimate take on Robert’s taste is “twee.” It’s a great word:

    twee (adj): dainty or pretty in an overdone and affected way

    Okay, I’ve satisfied my Robert-bashing need for a bit.


  564. on June 28, 2007 at 11:01 pm Skeptical Optimist

    560 Innernaut

    He doesn’t have the taste to know? So then it becomes a question of, well, he may not know, but dammit he’s going to make sure it’s the real thing because it’s the best. Even if he clearly can’t tell the difference. I can’t quite get over that. It’s like a mini-psychodrama with waffles.

    LOL, thanks.
    Yeah, well, anyone who ever went “shopping” with Burton knows just how embarrassing this could be. As it was proven over and over again, he couldn’t tell a genuine anything from a skillful reproduction, all his so-called aesthetics were only applicable within his own field of reference. Almost no discrimination in the experiences I had with him, no discernment really, although he could always tell you what was playing on the Muzak!

    And how many of us were put in that ridiculous “intermediary” position—“Goodness, ask the man if he’ll come down $2000 if we pay cash,” talking about someone standing right in front of him. Then, like an idiot among idiots, one would have to turn to the person and parrot, “Would you go down $2000 if we pay cash?” Just another way to show you he could make you do any lame-ass thing he wanted.

    You gotta laugh.

    JoelF


  565. >Too much Kim Jong Ill for my taste.

    Yes, yes!


  566. I remember arguing with him in museums. He had the most pedestrian taste. Even when one took the time to explain why he was being ridiculous, and obviously so, he would end the conversation with his old standby…”When your level of being changes you’ll see that I’m right”. I never allowed myself to be around him again in relation to anything “artsy”. It was way too embarrassing.

    Only HE would buy something high, sell it low, re-buy it high again, and re-sell it low again (eg. Vigée Le Brun). He really is a hick when it comes to taste and art.


  567. Not to say I don’t like Vigee Le Brun, because I do. Just using it as an illustration.


  568. on June 28, 2007 at 11:57 pm Howard Carter

    To WhaleRider – 500

    HC – 434 “Conscious Beings are the only ones who are qualified to serve as a go between for Influence C for those who are not awake. This applies to the FoF and its students…”

    “I am still reeling from your post, (434) Howard! I am glad you finally got that out in the open…maybe now you can separate from it and grasp what you are actually saying!”

    WhaleRider, you undoubtedly read the post in a linear format. The rules for awakening are different. How does one move from sleep to awakening without giving up the main thing that keeps one asleep? This is our will, the will of the lower self. And what do we replace it with in the interim? A higher will, a guide. Maybe you disagree on Robert being that guide.

    We have theories that some individuals awakened on their own, with a direct dialog with Influence C. That was not my play; it was my play to meet a school for awakening, with an individual whom I see as a true guide.

    There is nothing unusual in my comments of 434. All those thoughts have been said starting with the Fourth Way and going back in time to the beginning of recorded history.

    Some people on the blog see and write from an esoteric viewpoint when it suits their own argument, and can then completely abandon it and write in a strictly literal, non-spiritual, sense when that suits them.

    Comrade, in post 505, saw clearly what post 434 was about without me ever mentioning it in so many words; he/she distilled it to the central issue very succinctly. What is it that allowed them to understand what it was pointing to and not yourself?

    434 is really about basic information detailing the process of awakening. It points to the necessity of, at some point, giving up one’s will to a higher will. This is where conscious life departs from mechanical life. This is not a requirment for living a perfectly happy, normal life on earth. Only for going beyond that is it a necessary element.

    If you say Robert was not the one to inspire you to give up your will that is your perogative. I happen to have taken my stand with him. But if you say giving up one’s will is not part of the bargin of awakening (and it is indeed a bargin), you have disregarded the central point of all spiritual teachings.
    So, in the end, I would close with these words – We don’t own our bodies, Influence C owns them. Those who are more awake realize this fact.


  569. Yes, Howard, you are the perfect one to lecture us on what it takes to awaken. We see the results.


  570. Skeptical Optimist: “Doesn’t Girard get to do his own fundraising?”.

    As of nine months ago, when I left, Girard was doing the occasional fundraising dinner when RB was away. He had been pretty much marginalised. Asaf is the heir designate – he too leads fundraising dinners, and meetings, much more popular events than Girard’s.

    I was a Girard supporter, being appreciative of his honesty, and would attend his events. It was generally the same small group of rather sorry people who couldn’t quite fit in with RB’s faith-based direction. Girard’s events chiefly consisted of him talking at length about obscure topics in a semi-comprehensible way, but it fulfilled some kind of need.

    There was none of the excitement or glitz of RB events. For example, dinner service was usually a mess, the flowers would not have been changed since RB’s event a couple of days ago, and so on.

    My last lunch at Apollo d’Oro was hosted by Girard. I asked him if he felt any of us were going to awaken in this lifetime. He said that if we made enough efforts we might awaken in our next lifetime. I said that this formulation seemed absurd to me and that I believed waking up in this lifetime was perfectly possible. He looked at me quizzically and changed the subject. I got up and left.


  571. I think it’s time Sheik.


  572. 567.Howard Carter.
    On the point that we loan our bodies I agree.
    I also agree with much of what you say about our sleep.
    About surrendering my will to Reb, I tried it and from trying it for a long time finally came to the conclusion that it was a mistake.
    He is not C influence, he is just someone so abnormal that he has you in awe for now.
    His misuse of the trust of those young men who put themselves in his trust is an abomination and most definately the process of crime.
    Please explain to me in detail how his interaction with them makes for any higher triad.
    Also you have not answered the question if you have personally experienced his FIRST force or if it is only vicarious.
    Please for the benefit of all of our understanding respond.
    Because through deep experience of him I have come to the conclusion that I wouldn’t buy a car from him let alone a soul.

    The following is what a normal spiritual teacher has to say on the subject and as we both know he is not necessarily an awakened man, but I would trust him with my growing soul any day.

    Q
    Your Holiness, what do you think of homosexuality?
    Dalai Lama:
    “It’s part of what we Buddhists call ‘bad sexual conduct.’
    Sexual organs were created for reproduction between the male element and
    the female element and everything that deviates from that is not
    acceptable from a Buddhist point of view. Between a man and [another] man,
    a woman and another woman, in the mouth, the anus,
    or even using a hand.” (the DL mimes masturbation)…
    Q
    So you share this view with Christianity?
    Dalai Lama:
    “We share much more than that: the same philosophy of love of one’s
    neighbor, the aspiration to elevate a human being above his/her vices,
    compassion and forgiveness…”
    June 1997, San Francisco

    Love to you Cy.


  573. Howard says: “This is where conscious life departs from mechanical life. This is not a requirement for living a perfectly happy, normal life on earth. Only for going beyond that is it a necessary element.”
    Howard, you basically aiming to go beyond “normal and happy” if I understand you correctly. And what is it, how do you imagine that kind of life? Like, Superman, or Batman or something like that? Above normal? Above happy?
    This is so crazy to me… What an ego trip… Wanting to go “beyond normal” life on Earth!… Good luck!
    (You probably think that you’re “almost there”…It’s a very common trait among devotees – to think that you’re “almost there”. Right?)

    “But if you say giving up one’s will is not part of the bargin of awakening (and it is indeed a bargin), you have disregarded the central point of all spiritual teachings.”
    First of all it’s “bargain”.
    And second of all giving up one’s will is NOT a central point of ALL spiritual teachings. This is just a lie, Howard!
    There is no “will” to give up, dude!
    It’s your ego, your EGO, or imaginary picture of yourself that wants so much to go beyond normal, and become the most conscious, and the greatest, and above all, and loved and respected by all, and… and…
    “Surrender” does not necessarily mean “give your will and your body to Robert Burton”! That may be his clever interpretation to gain control over his students.
    “Surrender” or “Giving up” may actually have something to do with your Ego that runs your life now and craves public recognition and getting “above” others.

    There is no getting “above normal life on Earth”, Howard. It is what it is. Read some Nizargadatta, when you have some time between fund-raisers and teaching events…

    You’re so off, Howard, it’s really sad. May you find peace one day.


  574. on June 29, 2007 at 12:51 am Howard Carter

    To WhaleRider, Re: unoanimo

    He’s in.

    If he’s not a student why would he be so fearful of someone knowing his identity, especially if he’s never been a member (one of his options)? Why would he be singled out by anyone?

    This is a clue. He’s fearful because he’s in a special category with Joe Average and a few others who regularly change names, maybe also “Purchasing Awakening”?.

    He’s one of the main “ghost” members, stuck on a plane of his own; loathing the school but unable to break away. Like those ghosts Meher Baba talks about that when they die they float aroung the earth because they were addicted to alcohol or gambling or something.


  575. Howard, if anyone is a “ghost” it’s you.


  576. Howard, and what’s you’re identity my friend. What’s your excuse?


  577. Thirty-day term for triple fatal
    By Rob Young/Appeal-Democrat

    July 19, 2006 – 9:00AM

    An Oregon House man was sentenced Wednesday to 30 days in jail in connection with a November 2004 truck cash that left three Yuba City residents dead.

    Daniel A. Highland pleaded no contest in Sutter County Superior Court to three misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter charges in the deaths of Kamla D. Lally, Balwinder Kaur and Balwinder Singh.

    Judge Robert Damron accepted a plea agreement between Highland’s attorneys and prosecutors and ruled that Highland, 55, acted without malice or gross negligence.

    Highland will be able to serve his jail time on work release, then will be on summary probation for three years, Damron ruled.

    Highland lost control of a Renaissance Vineyard & Winery truck on Highway 113 in south Sutter County. In the multi-vehicle collision that followed, the victims’ car was struck by a Humvee that was following the truck. All the victims died instantly.

    Abraham Goldman, one of Highland’s attorneys, said Highland swerved onto the right shoulder to avoid a head-on collision with a vehicle approaching in the wrong lane, then lost control of the truck and entered the opposite lane.

    Instead of wine, the truck was carrying five tons of concrete curbing, which would have crushed Highland if he had slammed on the brakes, said Goldman.

    Assistant District Attorney Fred Schroeder said it is “certainly possible” that Highland swerved to avoid the approaching vehicle.

    “We don’t know why it happened, but we don’t see gross negligence,” said Schroeder. “But it was wrong, and there needs to be some sanction.”

    “It could happen to anyone who drives,” he said.

    Two lawsuits and one claim brought by the families of Lally, Kaur and Singh have been resolved, said Goldman, who declined to discuss the terms.

    Two of the families thought it was pointless to send Highland to jail. The third wanted maximum jail time, said Schroeder.

    “I regret the whole thing. It was tragic,” Highland said in an interview.

    Highland attorney David Springfield said the Fellowship of Friends, the Oregon House organization that owns the Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, has done “whatever it can to fill the cups of justice” for families of the victims.

    No family members of the victims attended the plea hearing and sentencing, which was scheduled on short notice. Highland had been scheduled for a Sept. 12 jury trial.

    Appeal-Democrat reporter Rob Young can be reached at 749-4710. You may e-mail him at ryoung@appeal-democrat.com.


  578. 573 Howard Carter said

    ‘ He’s one of the main “ghost” members, stuck on a plane of his own; loathingnthe school but unable to break away.Like those ghosts Meher Baba talks about that when they die they float aroung (sic) the earth because they were addicted to alcohol or gambling or something’

    Or something. Like addiction to sucking the cocks of heterosexual young men ( and not so young ) constantly,15 to 100 times per day,in between eating ( which he does almost non stop )and shopping for expensive homo trinkets and clothes,to feed his ever increasing lust for power,control and semen.

    Is that what you had in mind Howard among your examples of a debauched and depraved life ?


  579. Howard
    address the issue, please answer the questions in my previous post 571 they werent rhetorical.
    Help me to understand.
    Cy.


  580. HAHAHA. its significant that Howard Carter singles out Joe Average for ‘special dispensation’ to hell or whatever he was implying in post 573.
    Howard, is it because Joe Average posted some extremely astute and well articulated comments and observations ?

    They had the ring of truth about them didn’t they ……..and you and your cronies don’t like that uncomfortable feeling it gives you do you now….AHAHAHA


  581. Unoanimo,
    Just curious… What happened to your kind advice on page 7? Obviously a change of heart, but I’m wondering what precipitated the change.

    http://animamrecro.wordpress.com/2007/04/20/the-fellowship-of-friends-discussion-part-7/#comment-7869

    I would advise all those participating in this blog not to address comments to HC: as I see it, his particular ‘entity’ is a deviation for you, a placebo for your own HC needing attention and a very poor ’symbol’ for your ability to speak through your conscience without having to be prompted by such an obvious ‘contradiction’ to do so outside yourself. HC stands for an affirmation within you, one of a false sense of chivalry, i.e., to save the woman from her pet dragon.

    What you would rather tell RB, HC takes his place symbolically, i.e., sugar pill, not wise man pill. Do yourselves a great service and let this affirmation go…HC is a test between resentment and continuance: please do not resent him or praise him, continue without his need for the affirmations of your compliments and negative drama, i.e., Pain-body-food from your reactions to his particular level of being, tennis matches are not real, nor the ones running alongside the net, picking up the things that drop off the net, having not made it over everyone’s expectations of the players.

    What you expect of HC, you yourself have yet to untie within yourselves…he is a symbol of a contradiction within you and all energy ‘directly’ addressed to him only stalemates your position of going beyond the symbols of contradiction and affirmations of that which will ultimately graduate you from spiritual schools on earth.


  582. So anyway, HOWARD CARTER, I’m going to “address a comment” to you despite unoanimo’s advice…

    First of all, tell us what the word “own” means in that context?

    Of course we don’t “own” our bodies. Did anyone here think that we did? Was there a time when you believed that?!

    We’ve all watched friends die, family members die, and we know that death is everywhere.

    If what you are trying to say is that you and I — and all of us on this blog and not on this blog will die one day — and that we have absolutely no idea what will become of these spirits that inhabit our bodies, I absolutely agree. No belief in Influence C, no “verification” of Influence C, no belief in God changes any of that.

    We just don’t know.

    It’s a mystery. THAT, Howard is one of the many realizations that could make you and I very close friends — when we understand profoundly that we don’t know. And that our time together is limited.

    We’re wasting time.