Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 5:40 am

A Tour of Biddulph Old Hall: Rigdzin Shikpo takes us on a tour of Biddulph Old Hall in Staffordshire, England. Biddulph Old Hall is the site of some of Trungpa Rinpoche's early teachings in the UK.
by Rigdzin Shikpo
chronicleproject.com
April 25, 2018

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EDITOR Dr Desmond Biddulph
President Dr Desmond Biddulph
REGISTRAR Odin Biddulph

The Buddhist Society at Ninety
by Dr Desmond Biddulph

-- The 90th Anniversary of The Buddhist Society 1924–2014, by The Buddhist Society


[Edwin] Arnold took a position as a schoolmaster at King Edward's School, Birmingham for several years. In 1855, he married Catharine Elizabeth Biddulph (1831-1864), and the couple had four children - Edwin, Julian, Katharine, and Arthur. In 1856 he accepted a post in India as Principal of the Government Sanskrit College at Poona and served there for seven years, returning to England with his wife because of her ill health. [1]

Catharine died in 1864 shortly after Arthur's birth.

-- Edwin Arnold, by Theosophy Wikipedia


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Biddulph Old Hall. Source: Sangha Magazine, May 1963

May 1963 Between February and May, Biddulph Old Hall was bought (S May and June 63)
Nov 1963 Ānanda Bodhi to Thailand
1963 129 Haverstock Hill was purchased. The property was rented to provide an income for the Vihāra
April 1964 Ānanda Bodhi returned and went to Biddulph and taught samādhi and vipassanā, Wat Paknam method. (S Mar 64)
10 Jan 67 Maurice Walshe asked John Garry to manage Biddulph. He also found Richard Randall (previously Mr Purfurst and Venerable Kapilavaḍḍho) and asked him to return
Biddulph Old Hall sold (S Nov 69)


-- Honour Thy Fathers: A Tribute to the Venerable Kapilavaddho ... And brief History of the Development of Theravāda Buddhism in the UK, by Terry Shine


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Oxford to Staffordshire: 2h (110.9 mi) via M40; 2h 41 min (126.4 mi) via M5


A Visit to Biddulph Old Hall, July 2013

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To celebrate 50 years of Chogyam Trungpa's arrival in the UK Rigdzin Shikpo visited Biddulph Old Hall where he received many precious teachings from Trungpa Rinpoche.

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[Rigdzin Shikpo] So it was in this tower, "The Tower of England," it was called, that Trungpa Rinpoche did his major teachings with us, teaching on Maha Ati, teaching on the basis of the Bodhisattva vow, and the shetas{?} that go with that. And teachings on the Wheel of Life as well, which seemed supremely important.

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There was a rumor that this was haunted, that this room was haunted. And particularly this part here. And there was something quite specific about it at one time. And people said there was a man with a wooden leg coming down the steps.

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So I kind of thought about that, and thought it was rubbish.

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But then I heard it myself. [Clap, clap, clap, clap] And then you think, "He must be coming. The next step or two, he'll be here, coming through the curtain."

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Nothing.

So you raise up your courage, and lift the curtain, and there was a painting that Rinpoche had put on the wall, and the wind is blowing to make it seem even more eerie.

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And the [wooden dowel] at the end of the thangka is just blowing to and fro, and hitting the stone wall on the side. And that counted for the sound like a man with a wooden leg coming down the steps.

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[Old English Joke] My friend said he knew a man with a wooden leg named Smith. So I asked him, "What was the name of his other leg?"


So that was the ghost. [Laughs]

It was much later that the name Bradley Green was dropped in favour of the adopted the name, Biddulph, during which time Biddulph Old Hall was occupied in turn by a collective of Trappist monks, after which a reclusive family name Smith took it over where they lived in seclusion in more recent times.

-- Biddulph Old Hall, by sgpt.org.uk


I always told Rinpoche, everybody thinks the whole place is haunted, what do you think? He said, "No, it's not haunted. There's no problem about that."

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Trungpa Rinpoche felt that there was something very special about this place. He felt it had a very open quality, and that it was a good place to not only meditate but to do the introductions to certain kinds of truths, that you could do it here. It had the right kind of feel. Like you were in a tower on top of the world.

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You're almost like at the top of Mt. Meru or something, and you could look out and you would somehow know that if you looked out at the window you'd have a vision of the whole of the world.

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He felt that he could really open up and teach in a way that he wasn't able to do in other places.

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And he taught some of the deepest kinds of teachings that you have in Tibetan Buddhism here. And though we may have not understood what he taught, at least we had the edge of it.

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And I think that somehow his power of teaching -- it may be fanciful to say it or sound fanciful, but I think there's some truth to it -- that his truth somehow is part of the fabric of the building.

In Islam, Barakah or Baraka (Arabic: بركة‎ "blessing") is a kind of continuity of spiritual presence and revelation that begins with God and flows through that and those closest to God.[1][2]

Baraka can be found within physical objects, places, and people, as chosen by God. This force begins by flowing directly from God into creation that is worthy of baraka.[1] These creations endowed with baraka can then transmit the flow of baraka to the other creations of God through physical proximity or through the adherence to the spiritual practices of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. God is the sole source of baraka and has the power to grant and withhold baraka.

Baraka is a prominent concept in Islamic mysticism, particularly Sufism. It pervades Sufi texts, beliefs, practices, and spirituality. Sufism emphasizes the importance of esoteric knowledge and the spiritual union with God through the heart. Baraka symbolizes this connection between the divine and the worldly through God's direct and intentional blessing of those that are most reflective of Him and his teachings.

-- Barakah, by Wikipedia


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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 8:23 am

Thomas de Hartmann
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 7/10/19

NOTICE: THIS WORK MAY BE PROTECTED BY COPYRIGHT

YOU ARE REQUIRED TO READ THE COPYRIGHT NOTICE AT THIS LINK BEFORE YOU READ THE FOLLOWING WORK, THAT IS AVAILABLE SOLELY FOR PRIVATE STUDY, SCHOLARSHIP OR RESEARCH PURSUANT TO 17 U.S.C. SECTION 107 AND 108. IN THE EVENT THAT THE LIBRARY DETERMINES THAT UNLAWFUL COPYING OF THIS WORK HAS OCCURRED, THE LIBRARY HAS THE RIGHT TO BLOCK THE I.P. ADDRESS AT WHICH THE UNLAWFUL COPYING APPEARED TO HAVE OCCURRED. THANK YOU FOR RESPECTING THE RIGHTS OF COPYRIGHT OWNERS.


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Thomas de Hartmann
Born Thomas Alexandrovich de Hartmann
September 21, 1885
Khoruzhivka, Poltava Governorate, Russian Empire (now Ukraine)
Died March 28, 1956 (aged 70)
New York City, New York, United States
Nationality Russian
Alma mater Saint Petersburg Conservatory
Occupation Composer
Known for Setting Gurdjieff's writing to music
Spouse(s) Olga Arkadievna de Schumacher (1885-1979)

Thomas Alexandrovich de Hartmann (Russian: Фома́ Алекса́ндрович Га́ртман; September 21, 1885 – March 28, 1956) was a Russian composer and prominent student and collaborator of George Gurdjieff.

Biography

Thomas de Hartmann was born in Khoruzhivka, Poltava Governorate, Russian Empire, now Sumy Oblast, Ukraine. At the age of 18 he received his diploma from the Saint Petersburg Conservatory. He studied conducting in Munich with Felix Mottl before World War I.

Thomas de Hartmann was a graduate of the Imperial Conservatory of Music. He studied musical composition with three of the greatest Russian composers of the 19th century: Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Anton Arensky and Sergei Taneyev. His piano teacher was Anna Yesipova, the second wife and former student of Theodor Leschetizky. Most of De Hartmann's compositions were for voice and piano. In 1907, his ballet The Pink Flower, produced by Nikolay Legat with Vaslav Nijinsky and Tamara Karsavina in the cast, was presented at the Imperial Opera. The Tsar was so impressed that he himself granted De Hartmann exemption from military duty so that he might study conducting in Munich.[1]

In Munich, Thomas de Hartmann met the artist, former Sufi student and later stage impresario, Alexander de Salzmann; they were both friends of Rainer Maria Rilke and Wassily Kandinsky. Later, in Russia, after the beginning of World War I, De Hartmann would introduce De Salzmann to George Gurdjieff.[2]

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On November 12, 1906 Thomas married Olga Arkadievna (Arkadaevna) de Schumacher (August 28, 1885 - September 12, 1979), a celebrated opera singer. Olga was a daughter of Arkady Alexandrovich von Schumacher (June 7, 1855 - June 8, 1938) and Olga Konstantinovna von Wulffert (1860 - April 3, 1939), who both died in Paris. Arkady was a high official in the tsarist Russian government in St. Petersburg.

Thomas was a great-nephew of Eduard von Hartmann, the author of Philosophy of the Unconscious
(3 vols.), vol. 1 of which was published in Germany in 1869. This work later became well-known in America and England.[3]

Association with Gurdjieff

De Hartmann was already an acclaimed composer in Russia when he first met Gurdjieff in 1916 in St. Petersburg. From 1917 to 1929 he was a pupil and confidant of Gurdjieff. During that time, at Gurdjieff's Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man near Paris, De Hartmann transcribed and co-wrote much of the music that Gurdjieff collected and used for his movements exercises.[4][5]

De Hartmann wrote Our Life with Mr. Gurdjieff together with his wife Olga de Hartmann, who was Gurdjieff's personal secretary for many years.


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In 1951 De Hartmann and his wife moved to the United States from France. He died on March 28, 1956, in New York City. After her husband's death, Olga collected many of Gurdjieff's early talks in the book Views from the Real World (1973). She died at her home in Nambé, Santa Fe County, New Mexico on September 12, 1979. Both she and her husband are buried in the Princeton Cemetery, Princeton, New Jersey.

Music

De Hartmann's four-act ballet La Fleurette Rouge (The Red Flower) was performed in 1906. Vaslav Nijinsky, Anna Pavlova, and Michel Fokine danced principal roles in performances at the Imperial opera houses of Moscow and St. Petersburg.

He composed the music for Wassily Kandinsky's The Yellow Sound.

The music he wrote with Gurdjieff was later adapted by Laurence Rosenthal for the 1979 Peter Brook film Meetings with Remarkable Men.

In 1982, the Guggenheim Foundation premiere of Kandinsky's opera Der gelbe Klang was made possible thanks to a complete rearrangement by Gunther Schuller of De Hartmann's hitherto lost work. It is not known whether De Hartmann completed a full score but it is clear why Konstantin Stanislavski could not understand the work when de Hartmann proposed it for the Moscow Art Theatre in 1914.[6]

Recordings

• The complete Piano Music of Georges I. Gurdjieff and Thomas de Hartmann, Cecil Lytle, pianist, 6-CD boxed set, [1], Celestial Harmonies 19904-2
• The Music of Gurdjieff/de Hartmann, three disc set, [2]Triangle Editions, TCD1001-1003, 1989
• The Thomas de Hartmann Project',' by Elan Sicroff, seven-disc set of solo piano, chamber and vocal works (Basta Music 3093472, September 2016)
• G.I. Gurdjieff: Sacred Hymns," by Keith Jarrett, ECM 1174, September 198
• Hidden Sources -Gurdjieff, De Hartmann, by Alessandra Celletti (KHA Records, 1998)[7]
• Sacred Honey -Gurdjieff, De Hartmann,[8] by Alessandra Celletti
• Echoes From the Real World - Gurdjieff, De Hartmann, 21 compositions for solo piano; Mario Sollazzo, pianist. [3], KHA Records, Italy, 2015

References

1. Crunden, Robert Morse (2000). Body and soul: the making of American modernism. Basic Books. p. 408. ISBN 0-465-01485-2. ...Thomas de Hartmann had been an established composer in St. Petersburg
2. Lachman, Gary (2005). A Dark Muse. Basic Books. p. 240. ISBN 978-1-56025-656-4.
3. von Hartmann, Eduard (1893). Philosophy of the Unconscious (in German and English). I. K. Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co., Ltd. Speculative results according to the inductive method of physical science
4. Gurdjieff in Tbilisi - also Image of Thomas de Hartmann
5. Nott, C.S. (1961). Teachings of Gurdjieff - A Pupil's Journal. Penguin Arkana. p. 9. ISBN 0-14-019156-9.
6. Hines, Thomas Jensen (1991). Collaborative form: studies in the relations of the arts. Kent State University Press. p. 99. ISBN 0-87338-417-2. ...to see the obscure stage work performed for the first time ever...
7. "Hidden sources - Press Review". http://www.kha.it. Retrieved 2017-12-24.
8. "Sacred Honey |||||| New Album". Alessandra Celletti | official site. 2018-02-23. Retrieved 2018-05-30.

External links

• Thomas de Hartmann: A Composer’s Life By John Mangan
• Thomas de Hartmann page from Gurdjieff International Review
• Thomas de Hartmann on IMDb
• Thomas de Hartmann papers at Yale University Music Library
• Thomas de Hartmann grave at Princeton Cemetery
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 8:49 am

Alexander (Alexandre) Gustav de Salzmann (1874–1934)
by The Gurdjieff Legacy Foundation Archives
Accessed: 7/10/19

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Alexander de Salzmann, Fourth Way, esoteric Christianity, The Work

Alexander de Salzmann was born in Tiflis (Tblisi), Georgia, on January 25, 1874. His initial studies took him to Moscow and, after studying there, de Salzmann left for Munich where he was part of the artistic circle in the German Art Nouveau movement known as Jungendstil; his friends included Wassily Kandinsky and Ranier Maria Rilke. He contributed illustrations to the journals Jugend and Simplicissimus. René Daumal, his pupil, spoke of him as a "former dervish, former Benedictine, former professor of jui-jisu, healer, stage-designer...."1 He was also "a remarkable painter and a recognized metteur en scène, inventor of a new lighting technique...."2 On March 3, 1934, in Leysin, Switzerland, Alexander de Salzmann died from tuberculosis.3

In 1911 he met and married Jeanne Allemand in Hellerau, Germany, where she was studying dance at the Eurhythmics Institute of Emile-Jaques Dalcroze. At the time Hellerau was in the vanguard of artistic and educational development in Europe. In 1913, de Salzmann produced the German debut of Paul Claudel's play The Annunciation at Hellerau.

Because of the Russian Revolution, de Salzmann and his wife moved to Tiflis from Germany. Soon after, Gurdjieff and his pupils arrived in January of 1919. Thomas de Hartman met de Salzmann, whom he had known from their days in Munich. He learned de Salzmann was producing the scenery and lighting for the opera house productions of Carmen and Rigoletto in Tiflis. De Hartmann introduced de Salzmann and his wife to Gurdjieff and they became students. Gurdjieff said of the couple, "He is a very fine man, and she—is intelligent."4

That fall, the de Salzmanns, along with the de Hartmanns and Dr. Stjoernval, helped Gurdjieff establish his Institute in Tiflis and rehearsals began for Gurdjieff's ballet scenario The Struggle of the Magicians. In July 1920 Gurdjieff's group, with the de Salzmanns, moved to Constantinople. In August 1921 Gurdjieff and his students went to Germany. Finally, in October 1922, they went to Avon, France, where Gurdjieff established his Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man at the Prieuré.

At the Institute, Gurdjieff said he "could number on one hand his lieutenants with a real practical streak...."5 De Salzmann was one of this small group. One of his more notable tasks at the Prieuré was the decoration of the stable loft used by the writer Katherine Mansfield, who was dying from tuberculosis; the space had been vacated by Gurdjieff and given to Mansfield when she arrived.6 After Gurdjieff's near fatal automobile accident in July 1924, de Salzmann painted murals in the Montmartre district of Paris in an attempt to support the Institute financially.7 In 1928 Gurdjieff sent de Salzmann and his wife to Germany several times in the hopes of establishing a core group there.8 About de Salzmann and his wife, "Jeanne's flair for dance... Gurdjieff had wonderfully developed and elevated: but the artist's formidable gift had somehow been marginalized."9

By the summer of 1930, "Alexandre de Salzmann had more or less disappeared from the Institute."10 Upon his leaving he said, "I had entered the monastery under the name of Brother Petrus. I came out with the title of Father Sogol."11 After leaving the Prieuré, de Salzmann said, "I can't bring myself to fall in with this monkey-cage agitation which people so dramatically call life."12

Later, de Salzmann, who at the time was making a living as an antique dealer and interior decorator, met the avant-garde writer René Daumal and introduced him to Gurdjieff's teaching of The Fourth Way. The character of Pierre Sogol in Daumal's Mount Analogue is modeled on de Salzmann.

In 1933, quite ill at the time, de Salzmann met Gurdjieff at the Café Henri IV in Fontainebleau; what was said is not known. Gurdjieff's conviction was that de Salzmann, "in the sense of objective art, was 'the greatest of living painters.'"13 After Alexander de Salzmann's death, Jeanne de Salzmann led her husband's groups until 1939 when she introduced the students to Gurdjieff.

Notes

1. James Moore, Gurdjieff: The Anatomy of a Myth (Shaftesbury, Dorset: Element Books, 1991), 127.
2. Basarab Nicolescu, "The Strait Gate," The Gurdjieff International Review.
3. Ruth Sachs, White Rose History, ed. D. E. Heap and Joyce Light (Lehi, UT: Exclamation! Publishers, 2002), 59.
4. William Patrick Patterson, Struggle of the Magicians (Fairfax, CA: Arete Communications, 1996), 59. In Mme de Hartmann's unpublished memoir "What For?" she says the word used to describe Mme de Salzmann was "clever."
5. Moore, 182.
6. Ibid., 187.
7. Ibid., 208.
8. Ibid., 227.
9. Ibid., 228.
10. Ibid., 236.
11. Ibid., 236.
12. Ibid., 237.
13. Ibid., 249.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 8:51 am

Richard Arthure on Meeting Chogyam Trungpa
The Chronicles of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche
Accessed: 7/10/19
[Transcribed from the video by Tara Carreon]

NOTICE: THIS WORK MAY BE PROTECTED BY COPYRIGHT

YOU ARE REQUIRED TO READ THE COPYRIGHT NOTICE AT THIS LINK BEFORE YOU READ THE FOLLOWING WORK, THAT IS AVAILABLE SOLELY FOR PRIVATE STUDY, SCHOLARSHIP OR RESEARCH PURSUANT TO 17 U.S.C. SECTION 107 AND 108. IN THE EVENT THAT THE LIBRARY DETERMINES THAT UNLAWFUL COPYING OF THIS WORK HAS OCCURRED, THE LIBRARY HAS THE RIGHT TO BLOCK THE I.P. ADDRESS AT WHICH THE UNLAWFUL COPYING APPEARED TO HAVE OCCURRED. THANK YOU FOR RESPECTING THE RIGHTS OF COPYRIGHT OWNERS.


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Richard Arthure on Meeting Chogyam Trungpa

There are two intertwined narratives. For me, one is specifically the story of Trungpa Rinpoche, and how I directly experienced that. And the other is my own path, and how that was influenced by him, and how that also went on in a certain way because of maybe seeds that he planted that went to fruition after he died. So those two interwoven narratives, it’s hard for me to separate them out because they are both experiential from my point of view.

Well, I met him in 1966. And at that time I was married to an Irish actress named Jacqueline Ryan, or Jackie. We had rather a stormy relationship. We used to fight like cats and dogs. So kind of a trigger event that led to my meeting him was that I got a phone call from kind of an ex-girlfriend, an American girl one day, and she was asking me if I’d like to try LSD. And I had tried it before, so I said, “Yeah, I am very curious, and would be willing to try it.” So we arranged to meet. I actually had a day job at the time. I mean, I had some on and off career in theatre and acting and film and so on. But at that time I had a day job. And I called in sick one day, and I went to meet her. And she had some of this “Sunshine” [Orange sunshine] acid that’s supposed to be really good. Of course, I had no standard of comparison as to what was going to happen, but for me it was an extraordinary experience.

And I remember being in her room, looking at the wall, and seeing sort of dancing molecules, and getting the sense that things were not at all as solid as I had supposed. It was quite remarkable. And then later we went out in the park, Kensington Park, and laid down on the grass, and looked up at the sky, and I could see these pulsing, circular patterns in the sky. It was very extraordinary. I mean, I never heard the word “mandala,” but I suppose that that was the kind of thing I was seeing. These circular patterns were very vivid.

And so eventually, towards 4:30 or so in the afternoon, I said, “I should be going home, because my wife will be coming home from work.” So I went home, and I didn’t immediately tell Jackie that I had taken this drug, LSD. Later on I told her, and she was very shocked, and she wanted me to promise that I would never take LSD again, which I refused to do, because it had been a kind of experience that had opened a sort of door, you know, the “doors of perception,” or whatever it might be.

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But anyway, when we took the acid together, the girl named Karen, she had a book that supposedly was based on the Tibetan Book of the Dead. It was written by Timothy Leary and Richard Alpert, or later, Ram Dass -- right? The classic story of the 60s, I suppose. And I was so curious because of the extraordinary experience I had, that I wanted to find the original Tibetan Book of the Dead. So I went to this esoteric bookstore in London and I asked, “Do you have the Tibetan Book of the Dead?” They said, “Oh, no, no, it’s out of print. It’s been out of print for a while. But wait a minute, we have a used copy of another book in that same series that was edited by Evans-Wentz, it’s called ‘Tibetan Yoga and Secret Doctrines.’ Would you be interested in that one?” And I said, “Okay, Let me have a look.” So I ended up buying this used copy of this book, “Tibetan Yoga and Secret Doctrines.”

And it turned out it was all about the six yogas of Naropa, about which previously I knew nothing at all. And it somehow seemed really fascinating to me. And I started trying to meditate on my own. And I remember one day my wife Jackie came into our flat in London, and she saw me sitting cross-legged on the floor, and she said, “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” And I said, “Well, I’m trying to meditate.” She said, “Ha! A bastard like you could never meditate!” So it was kind of a negative reaction, and internally my response to that was, “I’m going to meditate if it kills me.”

So I was very determined to keep going. And actually, the book also said that, “You can’t hope to attain enlightenment unless you connect with a realized master in the practice lineage.” So then I was thinking, “Well, how on earth am I going to do that, because Tibet is on the other side of the planet, and I’m here in London, and I have no connection with anything to do with that.” But I began making the aspiration in my mind, “May I connect with a realized master in the practice lineage.” And I was actually trying to visualize the Kagyu gurus above my head. I had no idea what they looked like. I didn’t even know they wore maroon robes or anything like that. So I was supplicating without knowing what they looked like, or anything like that.

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So one day in my mind I was making this aspiration, and I had this sudden thought come to my mind, “Go to the phone book and look up ‘Tibet.’” And I thought, “That’s crazy. What’s that going to do?” And I thought, “Yeah, yeah, but what have you got to lose?” So I went to the phone book, and I looked up “Tibet.” Now in London, there’s 12 million people, the phone book is in four volumes, but I looked up in the “T’s,” and there was only one entry that began with the word “Tibet.” And that was “The Tibet Society of the United Kingdom.”

So I saw that, and noted down the address -- I think it was 58 Eccleston Square
-- and I didn’t think of phoning. I thought, “Well, I’ll go in person to see what happens.”

So at that time I had this great old car called a “Wolseley”. It was a very beautiful car. It only had one defect: the reverse gear didn’t work. So later on Trungpa Rinpoche used that as an analogy when joining the Vajrayana path, being a car with no reverse, and he got plenty of experience in being in that car without a reverse, I can assure you.

On any journey there is the assumption that we should be allowed to avoid danger along the way — at the minimum, to be a little careful. But if we think there is a reverse gear in Shambhala vision, we are misunderstanding a basic reality: life is perpetual motion.

-- Bravery: The Vision of the Great Eastern Sun, by Sakyong Mipham


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But anyway, so I got in the car, and I knew where Eccleston Square was, and I managed to find a parking place there without having to use the reverse. And it was sort of a Victorian townhome. And I went up the steps and there was a brass plate that said, “Buddhist Society.” And I thought, “Ha, that’s a good sign.” And underneath it it said, “Tibet Society.” So I pressed that bell push, the buzzer sounded, the door opened, and I went in.

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And there was an arrow pointing down to the basement. So I went down to the basement, full of anticipation that there was going to be something very esoteric -- I was sure about that – “Tibet Society!” And there was this middle-aged English woman with her hair in a bun, typing away on an old manual typewriter, looking at me at the top of her glasses and saying, “How can we help you?” And I said, “Well, tell me about the Tibet Society.” And she said, “Oh, it’s a charitable organization, raising money for Tibetan refugees in India. Would you care to make a donation?” I thought, “This is crazy.” And I think I gave her 10 shillings, and I was about to leave, thinking that this was a total waste of time. And at that moment, a young woman came in the door, and she kind of pulled me aside and she said, “If you don’t mind me asking, ‘what are you doing here’?” I said, “Well, it’s really hard to explain, but I’m really interested in the teachings of the Kagyu order of Tibetan Buddhism.” She said, “Oh, you know there are two Tibetan lamas in this country, and they belong to that Kagyu order.” And then she reached into her purse and she pulled out a photo, and she pointed to the one on the left and she said, “That’s Trungpa. That’s the one you want to meet.” I said, “Yes. Okay.” And then she proceeded to give me the address and phone number. They were living in Oxford.

And so I was very excited. She actually gave me the photo. And I remember going into the park -- it was in the summer -- and sitting on the grass and trying to meditate. And I was looking at this photo – I had it on the grass in front of me – and I could see this kind of aura around the head of Trungpa Rinpoche in the photo. And I felt the hairs on the back of my neck standing up, and I thought, “I have to contact him. I can’t wait any longer.” And I rushed home, and I phoned the number in Oxford, and asked to speak to Venerable Trungpa, and someone with a weird foreign accent said, “Oh, he no here right now. Better you write to him.” And then they gave me an address of some place called Biddulph in Staffordshire, Biddulph Old Hall in Staffordshire.

And so I sat down and wrote a letter, “Dear Venerable Trungpa. I’d very much like to come and meet you, and study under your guidance. And I’d be willing to meet you any time or place that would be suitable to you.”


And then I remember I still had this book that I had borrowed from the Tibet Society, “Tibet’s Great Yogi, Milarepa.” And one of the illustrations in that was a very elaborate syllable “Hum.” And so I carefully copied that in the margin of the letter in a green felt tip pen, this sort of syllable “hum.” And then I was satisfied. And I sent off the letter sure that that would do the trick.

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And then I decided that I should fast until I would get a response to my letter. So for about 4 hours I didn’t eat anything at all. And then I got really hungry, and had a good meal, and felt much better. And that was the end of my fast.

So I sent off the letter, and of course, the first day there’s no response. The second day there’s no response. The third day, now by that time you could get an answer, because in England you could send a letter one day and it would get there the next day, and you could get a reply the day after that. But on the third day there was still no answer. On the fourth day there was still no answer. Now I was getting antsy. And on the fifth day still no answer. And I thought, “Well, I can’t wait any longer. I’m just going to go.” And I had the address of this place, The Biddulph Old Hall, Biddulph, Staffordshire. And I had a road atlas. So I found this place Biddulph. It was like a dot on the map, it was just this little village. And I decided I was going to go. And I had this sort of Mexican blanket that someone had given me, and the other book that they had loaned me was “Tibet’s great yogi, Milarepa” from the Tibet Society. So I had the book, I had the blanket, and I was all ready to go.

So my wife sees me getting ready, and she says, “Where on earth are you going?” And I said, “Well, don’t wait up for me; I’ll probably be back really late.” And I didn’t explain. I didn’t want to go into any discussion, because she had such a bad attitude when she saw me trying to meditate.

So I just got in the car, with no reverse, and headed out. And I finally found this little village called “Biddulph” in Staffordshire. It’s kind of in the middle of England. And then I stopped in the village, and got directions to the Old Hall. And it’s a beautiful stone manor house. It fortunately had a kind of circular driveway, so I was able to drive in and have a hope of getting back out again in my car.

And this place had a kind of iron knocker on the door. And I knocked, and a young man came to the door and said, “How can we help you?” And I said, “Well, I came to see the Venerable Trungpa.” And he said, “Ah, you must be Richard. He told us you’d be arriving today.” And I said, “What?,” because I had not had any answer to my letter. So I was completely baffled. “Yeah, come on in, come on in,” you know.

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Then he took me upstairs and knocks on the door. And a voice from inside said, “Come in.” And I went in, and there was this young Tibetan in maroon robes, grinning from ear to ear like he’s extremely happy to see me. He said, “Good to see you. Come in. Tell me all about yourself.” And it was a very simple room, with a bed, a chair, a table, and that was it. And he offered me the bed to sit on, and he sat on a chair, and he was saying, “Tell me all about yourself.” Well, I didn’t know what to tell him, because there wasn’t much to tell in the context of why I came to meet him. But I actually asked him if he would accept me as a student. And he said, “It’s a pleasure to do business with you.” And then he told me that I should join in the schedule with the other people.

Now they had a very strict sitting schedule. They [Buddhist Society] had not yet connected with the Zen tradition of having walking meditation, so it was just sitting in the afternoon. So that was okay. And there was an evening meal. And then I went to him and talked to him some more. Then the next day they had sitting at 7-8, then there was breakfast, and then sitting from 9-12 with no break. And it was agony for me, because I wasn’t used to sitting cross-legged for three hours at a time without any break.

So after lunch I went up to see Rinpoche, and he said, “How’s it going?” So I didn’t know what to say, except that I had some images come up in my mind, and I tried to describe those. He actually interpreted some of them. It was very interesting. And anyway, he asked me if I would like to stay there for a week. And I said, “Yes, I would. But I think I should probably phone my wife and let her know where I am.” “Good idea! There’s a phone downstairs.”

So I went downstairs, and I phoned my wife Jackie. And I said, “I know you won’t believe this, but I’m with this Tibetan lama in this place called Biddulph in Staffordshire. And I’m going to be here for a week. So I’ll see you next Thursday,” or whatever it was. I think she thought I had flipped out, because that’s the first she had heard of it.

So during the week, he told me that the time would come when he would have his own center, which seemed at the time utterly improbable, because he was living, as it turned out, with two other Tibetans in a basement flat in Oxford. And they had virtually no money. One of them was working part-time as a porter, just enough to put a little bit of food on the table.

Job Description: Lodge Porter (Nights)

Salary: circa £21,000 p.a.

Main Purpose of Job: Responsible for the College’s security, welfare, communications and reception services.

Relationships:

• Responsible to: Lodge Manager
• Liaison with: Deans, students, staff, visitors, University Security Services and the Police

Hours of Work: Regularly working nights on a rota basis 4 days on, 4 days off. 7pm – 7am. The post holder will be asked to work day shifts, if the need arises.

Main Tasks:

Ensuring the efficient, friendly and informative reception of visitors to the College. This includes students, staff, conference guests, members of the public and contractors/suppliers;

Ensuring the prompt, efficient and friendly handling of incoming telephone calls to the Lodge switchboard;

Providing an appropriate level of response to contingencies, including emergencies, arising within and around the College, ensuring effective initial communication to and between interested parties;

Maintaining day to day security of buildings, property and persons on the College sites, including the efficient management of keys and monitoring of fire alarms, CCTV, and intruder alarms and access control systems;

Ensuring the prompt and efficient handling and of incoming and outgoing mail; this includes sorting the mail and parcels in a prompt and tidy way.

Completing College Guest room and Teaching room bookings in a timely manner.

Ensuring that good student order is maintained.

Maintaining the Lodge and entrance area as an efficient and presentable front office for the College

Safeguarding and accounting for all monies received at the Lodge,

Skills/Qualities:

The College Porters need to be: alert and vigilant; communicative; polite, patient and friendly both in person and on the telephone; capable of exercising firmness with students and responsive and pro-active in approach to the provision of help.
Experience of assisting with welfare issues is desirable.
Previous work in a College environment is ideal.
Previous experience in public reception responsibilities, and security industry is desirable.
Candidates should be PC literate.
Good level of English and Maths.


Benefits: 252 hours holiday per year, free meals on duty, uniform provided, pension, discounted travel scheme
For further information please visit http://www.oriel.ox.ac.uk and to apply please download the job description and submit an application form along with a CV via email to recruitment@oriel.ox.ac.uk or in writing to HR Department, Oriel College, Oriel Square, Oxford. OX1 4EW
Closing date for receipt of completed applications is 11th January 2019
The College exists to promote excellence in education and research and is actively committed to the principle of equality of opportunity for all suitably qualified candidates.

-- Lodge Porter (Nights), by Oriel College, University of Oxford


And I guess Rinpoche was studying a little bit at St. Antony’s college in Oxford....

Founded in 1950 as the result of the gift of French merchant Sir Antonin Besse of Aden, St Antony's specialises in international relations, economics, politics, and area studies relative to Europe, Russia, former Soviet states, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, Japan, China, and South and South East Asia.[1] It is consecutively ranked in the top five worldwide....

St Antony's reputation as a key centre for the study of Soviet affairs during the Cold War, led to rumours of links between the college and the British intelligence services; the author Leslie Woodhead wrote to this effect, describing the college as "a fitting gathering place for old spooks".....

As a postgraduate only college, St Antony's does not appear in the university's annual Norrington Table.


-- St Antony's College, Oxford, by Wikipedia.


At the end our retreat year in late May it was decided that we would visit the Promised Land, the site chosen for the enlightened society of either the near or far future, depending on whose story you listened to. The land that was chosen was Nova Scotia, Canada's Riviera. I was in favor of establishing enlightened society as soon as possible -- a year or two at the most. Others seemed to be dragging their feet.

Our Grieves and Hawks uniforms from London were ordered but would not be ready in time for the trip. So I contacted a military surplus company in New York which I had located through their advertisement in Shotgun News. I ordered one dark blue naval uniform for Rinpoche and an army khaki uniform for myself. Onto these uniforms I sewed two bars of medal ribbons that Rinpoche had designed. On my uniform I sewed my Rupon of the Red Division insignia. "Rupon'' was Tibetan for a company commander, which was the rank I then held. "Major" was pushing it a bit. Next to that ribbon I added the Iron Wheel medal and the Lion of Kalapa Court of Shambhala. This was jumping the gun somewhat because the Kalapa Court, which was to be located in Boulder, Colorado, had not yet been established. At most there were rumors of a house on Pine Street and an offer to purchase.

Sometime in the early light of morning Rinpoche, his consort, Jane, and I pored over the chart of the Province of Nova Scotia. It was to be a two-pronged attack. The Regent Osel Tendzin with his Group "B" would advance by air to Halifax Airport. The three of us in Group ''A" would go by sea, driving first to Portland and then taking the Nova Scotia Cruise Lines luxury ship up the coast. We would cross the Bay of Fundy to Yarmouth. The secrecy and stealth of our attack would surely take the natives by surprise. Finally, all of my training and reading of the Horatio Hornblower books would become useful information. Rinpoche would go as the Prince of Bhutan and I as his aide-de-camp, Major Perks, Lion of Kalapa. Jane would be Lady Jane, although I preferred to think of her as Lady Jane Gray. We were glad of our passports, which had our cover names of Chogyam Mukpo, John Perks, and Jane Condon.

The limousine that was rented for the ten-day operation was a silver Lincoln Continental. With great care I packed our evening dress tuxedos, as we planned to dine formally every night in the soon-to-be-enlightened province. We drove up to Portland, Maine, the next day to embark for the journey up the coast. Our limo was a bit oversized for the luxury liner, which looked more like a large ferry boat. After parking in the depths of its hull we found we could not open the rear doors more than six inches. Lady Jane could just squeeze through, but the Prince would never pass the gap. I pulled on his arms for a while until we realized the futility. Then the Horatio Hornblower in me became active. "The window!" I exclaimed. Lady Jane let down the rear electric window. The Prince put his arms around my neck and with Lady Jane holding up his pants we extricated him from the silver trap. On the ferry that morning, as the sun rose, the three of us stood on the upper deck and sang the Shambhala anthem. I threw an empty sake bottle overboard with a written copy of the anthem in it.

The Yarmouth dock smelled strongly of fish when we arrived and Rinpoche remarked that it reminded him of Tilopa. A good omen. We drove up to Halifax to meet the Regent's party and begin the expedition. (It had been named KOSFEF, short for Kingdom of Shambhala First Expeditionary Force. Later, there would be a medal ribbon for each member.) The Regent's force was already at the hotel I had chosen from the tourist brochure, the Horatio Nelson Hotel.

We had dressed in our uniforms earlier that morning on the boat, so we arrived at the hotel in style. Michael Root, the Regent's aide-de-camp, had arranged for the Shambhala flag we had hand sewn during retreat to be flown at the hotel entrance alongside the Canadian flag. Somehow I had it in my mind that there would be crowds attending our arrival. Instead, there was only the Regent's small party in their pinstriped suits and formal dresses. That evening we dined in our full evening dress at Fat Frank's, Halifax's only gourmet restaurant. There were speeches and toasts to the formation of enlightened society. We all sang the Shambhala anthem, with Fat Frank and his waiters joining in the end chorus, "Rejoice, the Great Eastern Sun arises."

I felt like the Kingdom had already happened, although Jerry, who was the Dapon, or Head of the Military, looked very glum. Michael and I talked to him on the way back to the hotel. "This is all crazy," he said. "Take over Nova Scotia? Make it Shambhala Kingdom? It's nuts!" This should have been my line, but somehow I had been overtaken by the fantasy. It all seemed real, quite easy, as I explained to Jerry in my enthusiasm. He was looking at me like I was crazy.

"You know," he complained, "you all come into the Nelson Hotel and salute Rinpoche who is pretending to be the Prince of Bhutan. You have that Shambhala flag flying next to the Canadian real flag in the front of the hotel. That's crazy! People will think we're all crazy!"

"Well," I argued, "Fat Frank and his waiters had a good time. Everyone seems quite friendly."

"You just can't come in here and take over," said Jerry.

"Why not?" asked Michael. "No one else seems to be in charge.

Jerry just shook his head. "I don't know. Taking over a Canadian province, making Rinpoche king and then calling it the Kingdom of Shambhala. Doesn't that seem a bit weird to you?"

"No," I replied. To cheer him up I pointed out the good omens: Tilopa at Yarmouth, letting us fly the flag at the hotel, and Fat Frank who wanted to be one of us and seemed to be convinced of our reality.


-- The Mahasiddha and His Idiot Servant, by John Riley Perks


But they had no money. So how was he going to have his own center? A mystery. But he sounded very confident about it, and he asked me would I like to be his private secretary. And I said yes.

So I stayed there for a week, and I met with him regularly on a one-to-one basis. And I think I had a different attitude toward him than the other people who were there, who were mostly connected through the Theravadin tradition. There had been a few Theravadin monks in London, so people had some connection with that. But the idea of having an actual guru was not most people’s approach. They were just coming, and he was like the monk in residence as far as they were concerned.

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A High Leigh Summer School in the 1970s picture Hazel Waghorn (held at the Royal Agricultural University Cirencester, in the Cotswold Countryside)

-- The 90th Anniversary of The Buddhist Society 1924–2014, by The Buddhist Society


As far as I was concerned, he was the guru, because I had read this book that talked in those terms.

So at the end of the week, I went back to London. And a day or two afterwards I was having dinner – I was with my wife Jackie – and she said to me, “I have a feeling you don’t really need me anymore.” And I said, “Yeah, maybe you’re right.” And she said, “I’m going to be leaving you.” And I said, “What?” And I didn’t really say much about it. But when I woke up the next morning – we had this big king-size bed, and there was this big empty space next to me -- she was gone. And I was kind of surprised, although she had said that, because it was so sort of sudden. And I remember calling up Trungpa Rinpoche in Oxford and saying, “You’ll never guess what happened. My wife left me.” He said, “Oh, yes.” And I said, “I have the feeling that if I contacted her, and asked her to come back, she probably would.” And he said, “Well, I wouldn’t do that if I were you.” And I said, “No, I’m not going to.” [Laughing] So then I told him we had a very stormy kind of relationship.

And then he came up to London and stayed with me in the flat that we had. And then I asked if he would check up on her. She was working in a store. I knew where she was staying. So she was working in this store on Oxford Street, and we drove over there. And he went in and checked up on her. I showed him a photograph of her. And he came out and I said, “What do you think?” And he said, “She seems to be fine.” I said, “Okay.”

And then a couple of days later we set out for Scotland.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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"I AM" Activity
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 7/10/19

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Guy and Edna Ballard

The "I AM" Movement is the original Ascended Master Teachings religious movement founded in the early 1930s by Guy Ballard (1878–1939) and his wife Edna Anne Wheeler Ballard (1886–1971) in Chicago, Illinois.[1] It is an offshoot of theosophy and a major precursor of several New Age religions including the Church Universal and Triumphant.[2] The movement had up to a million followers in 1938[3] and is still active today on a smaller scale. According to the official website of the parent organization, the Saint Germain Foundation, its worldwide headquarters is located in Schaumburg, Illinois, and there are approximately 300 local groups worldwide under several variations of the names "I AM" Sanctuary, "I AM" Temple, and other similar titles.[4] As of 2007, the organization states that its purpose is "spiritual, educational and practical," and that no admission fee is charged for their activities.[5] The term "I AM" is a reference to the ancient Sanskrit mantra "So Ham", meaning "I Am that I Am".[6]

Overview

The movement believes in the existence of a group called the Ascended Masters, a hierarchy of supernatural beings that includes the original Theosophical Masters such as Jesus Christ, El Morya Khan, Maitreya, and in addition several dozen more beyond the original 20 Masters of the Ancient Wisdom of the original Theosophists as described by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky.

These "Ascended Masters" are believed to be humans who have lived in a succession of reincarnations in physical bodies or cosmic beings (beings originated from the great central sun of light in the beginning of all times). Over time, those who have passed though various “embodiments” became highly advanced souls, are able to move beyond the cycles of "re-embodiments" and karma, and attained their "Ascension", becoming immortal. The Ascended Masters are believed to communicate to humanity through certain trained messengers per Blavatsky, including Guy and Edna Ballard.[1][2] Because Jesus is believed to be one of the Ascended Masters, making the "Christ Light" available to seekers who wish to move out of darkness, many of the members of the "I AM" Activity consider it to be a Christian religion.[6] According to the Los Angeles Magazine, Ballard said he was the re-embodiment of George Washington, an Egyptian priest, and a noted French musician.[7]

The "I AM" Activity was the continuation of the teachings received by H. P. Blavatsky and William Quan Judge. Ballard was always guided and inspired by the writings of William Quan Judge (1851-1896), who used the pseudonym David Lloyd due to the persecution of his enemies in the Theosophical Society. Then Ballard came in contact with the Mahatma called "Ascended Master" Saint Germain.

Ballard died in 1939. In 1942 his wife and son were convicted of fraud,[4][7] a conviction which was overturned in a landmark Supreme Court decision, ruling that the question of whether the Ballards believed their religious claims should not have been submitted to a jury. This event has been known as the determinant for the establishment of the policies regarding freedom of religion or beliefs rights in the United States of America. [4]

History

Founding


The "I AM" Activity was founded by Guy Ballard (pseudonym Godfré Ray King) in the early 1930s. Ballard was well-read in theosophy and its offshoots, and while hiking on Mount Shasta looking for a rumored branch of the Great White Brotherhood known as "The Brotherhood of Mount Shasta", he claimed to have met and been instructed by a man who introduced himself as "Saint Germain."[8] Saint Germain is regular component of theosophical religions as an Ascended Master, based on the historical Comte de Saint-Germain, an 18th-century adventurer.[3]

The Ballards said they began talking to the Ascended Masters regularly. They founded a publishing house, Saint Germain Press, to publish their books and began training people to spread their messages across the United States. These training sessions and "Conclaves" were held throughout the United States and were open to the general public and free of charge.[9] A front-page story in a 1938 edition of the Chicago Herald and Examiner noted that the Ballards "do not take up collections or ask for funds".[10] Some of the original members of I AM were recruited from the ranks of William Dudley Pelley’s organization the Silver Shirts. Meetings became limited to members only after hecklers began disrupting their open meetings.[2][3] Over their lifetimes, the Ballard's recorded nearly 4,000 Live dictations, which they said were from the Ascended Masters.[1] Guy Ballard, his wife Edna, and later his son Donald became the sole "Accredited Messengers" of the Ascended Masters.[3]

Popularity

The Ballards' popularity spread, including up to a million followers in 1938.[3] They accepted donations (called "love gifts") from their followers across the country, though no such donation or dues were required.[10]

The first of many "Conclaves" held in scores of cities in their national tours was Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 10–19, 1934.[1] According to a Los Angeles Magazine article, in August 1935, the Ballards hosted a gathering at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles that drew a crowd of 6,000.[7] Guy Ballard spoke under the pseudonym he used in authoring his books, Godfre Ray King, and his wife used the pseudonym Lotus. The meeting included teachings they described as being received directly from the Ascended Masters. They led the audience in prayers and affirmations that they called decrees, including adorations to God and invocations for abundance of every good thing, including love, money, peace, and happiness.[1]

Guy Ballard's death

At the height of his popularity, Guy Ballard died from arteriosclerosis at 5:00 A.M. on December 29, 1939, in Los Angeles, in the home of his son Donald. On December 31 his body was cremated. On New Year's Day during the annual Christmas Class, Edna Ballard stated that Guy had completed his Ascension at midnight December 31, 1939, from the "Royal Teton Retreat".[1]

Students of the "I Am" Activity believe in death as a change, not an ending. The "I AM" activity believe Ascension can mean Entering heaven alive, that is, to "raise one's body"—physically translating to a higher form of existence, as in the Ascension of Jesus. This is what Guy Ballard had claimed his followers would be able to do if they followed his instructions. Recorded in a dictation prior to Guy W Ballard's death a new dispensation to make the Ascension after the passing of death and cremation was given, and is recorded at the Saint Germain Foundation.[11] Students using this more traditional definition would have to conclude that Mrs. Ballard did not tell the full teaching, since Mr. Ballard had died a quite ordinary death and his body had been cremated. There had also been questions raised about devout members who had died without entering heaven alive. At this time, Edna Ballard defined "Ascension" as dying an ordinary death, but going to a higher level of heaven than a normal person because one has balanced "51% of one's karma".[12] This modified and more practical definition of "ascension" is used by all Ascended Master Teachings religions today, although they still believe that a select few, the higher level Ascended Masters such as Jesus and St. Germain, entered heaven alive.

Fraud trial of Edna and Donald Ballard

In 1942, Edna Ballard and her son Donald were charged with eighteen counts of mail fraud on the basis of claims made in books sent through the mail. The presiding judge instructed the jury not to consider the truth or falsity of the religious beliefs, but only whether the Ballards sincerely believed the claims or did not, and the jury found them guilty.[4][4][7] The Ninth Circuit overturned the conviction on the grounds that the judge improperly excluded the credibility of their religious beliefs from consideration, and the government appealed to the Supreme Court. In United States v. Ballard, the Supreme Court in a 5-4 landmark decision held that the question of whether Ballards believed their religious claims should not have been submitted to the jury, and remanded the case back to the Ninth Circuit, which affirmed the fraud conviction. Interpreting this decision, the Ninth Circuit later found that the Court did not go so far as to hold that "the validity or veracity of a religious doctrine cannot be inquired into by a Federal Court."[13]

On a second appeal, the Supreme Court in 1946 vacated the fraud conviction, on the grounds that women were improperly excluded from the jury panel.[14]

Relocation to Santa Fe and Edna Ballard's death

In March 1942, Edna Ballard moved the western branch of the Saint Germain Press and her residence to Santa Fe, where she recorded live before an audience thousands more dictations she said were from the Ascended Masters.[1]

Despite the ultimate dismissal of the court cases, it was not until 1954 that the organization's right to use the mail was restored. The Internal Revenue Service revoked their tax-exempt status in 1941, stating it did not recognize the movement as "a religion". A court ruling in 1957 overturned the ruling of the IRS and re-established the group's tax-exempt status.[2][15]

Recent history and present day

As of 2007, Saint Germain Foundation maintains a reading room in Mount Shasta, California, and its headquarters in Schaumburg, Illinois. Several annual conclaves are held at their 12-story "I AM Temple" at 176 West Washington Street in downtown Chicago. Among the hundreds attending, there are usually dozens of "I AM" students from other nations.[1] Classes and conclaves are regularly held in approximately 300 locations in America, Europe, Latin America, Australia, and Africa.[16] The Saint Germain Press, a subsidiary of the Saint Germain Foundation, publishes the historical books and related artwork and audio recordings of the Ballards' teachings, and a monthly magazine available by subscription, titled "The Voice of the 'I AM'".[17] It has been estimated that the Saint Germain Press has printed and put into circulation over one million books.[1]

The Saint Germain Foundation presents the "I AM" COME! Pageant every August at Mount Shasta, and has done so each year since 1950. Their website states that the performance is open to the public at no cost, and describes the Pageant as a portrayal of "the life of Beloved Jesus, focusing on His Miracles of Truth and Healing, and the example of the Ascension which He left to the world."[18]

Teachings

According to the group's teachings, Ascended Masters are believed to be individuals who have left the reincarnation cycle of re-embodiment.

The "I AM" Activity calls itself Christian, because Jesus is considered to be one of the more important Ascended Masters. It also refers to itself as patriotic because Ascended Master St. Germain is believed to have inspired and guided the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Followers claim that St. Germain belonged to the same Masonic Lodge as George Washington and Benjamin Franklin. However, Guy Ballard tended to downplay any relation of his ideas to Freemasonry because of his great discordance with Franklin Delano Roosevelt, a famous Freemason. Thus the notion that Saint-Germain belonged to a Masonic Lodge was more part of general occult lore than part of Ballard's emphasis.[19]

The movement teaches that the omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent creator God ('I AM' – Exodus 3:14) is in all of us as a spark from the Divine Flame, and that we can experience this presence, love, power and light – and its power of the Violet Consuming Flame of Divine Love – through quiet contemplation and by repeating 'affirmations' and 'decrees'. By affirming something one desires, one may cause it to happen.[3]


The group teaches that the "Mighty I AM Presence" is God existing in and as each person's Higher Self, and that a light known as the "Violet Flame" is generated by the "I AM Presence" and may surround each person who calls forth the action of the Holy Spirit for expression of mercy or forgiveness. The group believes that by tapping into these internalized powers in accordance with the teachings of the Ascended Masters, one can use one's relationship to the "Presence" to amplify the expressions of virtue such as justice, peace, harmony, and love; to displace or abate the expression of evil (relative absence of good) in the world; and to minimize personal difficulties in one's life.[20]

The spiritual goal of the teachings is that, through a process of self-purification, the believer may attain the perfected condition of the saints, or become an Ascended Master when leaving their body, contrasted to common concepts of 'ordinary death'. The process of attaining these results includes one or another of interior practices to facilitate resonance and alignment with the "I AM Presence": self-assessment in light of saintly exemplars such as Jesus, care in the use of language, devotion (to the Divine), gratitude, meditation, invocations and affirmations; and external practices such as "decrees" (repeated prayers given aloud with conviction), all of which are said to amplify the energetic presence of the divine in one's experience, resulting in the desired positive changes.[6] Members believe there is actual science behind decrees and affirmations and claim these practices are acknowledged by medicine as effective.[21]

The group also emphasizes personal freedom, embracing patriotic symbols, rendering honor to America giving the Pledge of Allegiance and the American’s Creed and always displaying American flags in its Temples or other offices.[6]

These "positive thinking" beliefs overlap with several other New Age movements such as Religious Science and the Human Potential Movement.[3]

See also

• Ascended master
• Exaltation
• Church Universal and Triumphant
• Robert LeFevre
• Mirra Alfassa
• Supermind
• Theosophy
• I Am that I Am

References

1. Saint Germain Foundation. The History of the "I AM" Activity and Saint Germain Foundation. Saint Germain Press 2003 ISBN 1-878891-99-5
2. Partride, Christopher, ed. (2004). New Religions: A Guide: New Religious Movements, Sects and Alternative Spiritualities. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. pp. 330–332.
3. Barrett, David (1996). Sects, 'Cults', and Alternative Religions: A World Survey and Sourcebook. London: Blandford. ISBN 0-7137-2567-2.
4. United States v. Ballard, 322 U.S. 78 (1944)
5. "Saint Germain Foundation official website". Saint Germain Foundation. Archived from the original on December 13, 2007. Retrieved December 17, 2007. The "I AM" Activity is spiritual, educational and practical. There are no financial schemes behind it; no admission is ever charged. It takes no political stance in any nation. The parent organization is Saint Germain Foundation, with worldwide headquarters located in Schaumburg, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. It is represented throughout the world by 300 local groups termed "I AM" Sanctuary, "I AM" Temple, "I AM" Study Groups, or "I AM" Reading Room. Saint Germain Foundation and its local activities are not affiliated with any other organization or persons.
6. Hadden, Jeffrey K. ""I AM" Religious Activity". Religious Movements Homepage at the University of Virginia. University of Virginia. Archived from the original on November 23, 2007. Retrieved December 17, 2007.
7. Thompkins, Joshua (April 1, 1997). "The mighty I Am: Cult led by Guy Ballard". Los Angeles Magazine.
8. King, Godfré Ray (1935) [1934]. "1: Meeting the Master". Unveiled Mysteries(Second ed.). Chicago, Illinois: Saint Germain Press. pp. 1–32 – via Internet Archive.
9. The Voice of the "I AM" Number 1, March 1936. Chicago, Illinois: Saint Germain Press. page 27
10. Chicago Herald and Examiner October 8, 1938
11. "War on High" -- Interview with Elizabeth Clare Prophet Gnosis magazine No. 21 Fall 1991 Pages 32-37
12. Prophet, Elizabeth Clare and Prophet, Mark (as compiled by Annice Booth) The Masters and Their Retreats Corwin Springs, Montana:2003 Summit University Press--"Ascension--the Goal of Life" Page 51
13. Cohen v. United States, 297 F.2d 760 (1962)
14. Ballard v. United States, 329 U.S. 187 (1946)
15. Catherine L. Albanese (2007). A Republic of Mind and Spirit: A Cultural History of American Mind and Spirit. Yale University Press. p. 470. ISBN 0-300-11089-8.
16. "Saint Germain "I AM" Group Activities". Saint Germain Foundation. Retrieved October 18, 2017.
17. "Saint Germain Press official home page". Saint Germain Foundation. Archived from the original on December 17, 2007. Retrieved December 17, 2007.
18. "Saint Germain Foundation "I AM" COME! Pageant webpage". Saint Germain Foundation. Archived from the original on December 17, 2007. Retrieved December 17, 2007.
19. Folkloric accounts collected in Raymond Bernard's Great Secret Count St Germain (Mokelumne Hill Press, 1993)
20. <http://www.saintgermainfoundation.org/SGF_01_MightyIAM.html>
21. Your Body Believes Every Word You Say - Barbara Hoberman Levine, Hung By The Tongue - Francis P Martin; Healing Words -Larry Dossey, M.D., 5 Common Words That Create Failure -Geoffrey James

Partial bibliography

• Saint Germain Foundation. The History of the "I AM" Activity and Saint Germain Foundation. Saint Germain Press 2003 ISBN 1-878891-99-5
• King, Godfre Ray. Unveiled Mysteries. Saint Germain Press. ISBN 1-878891-00-6
• King, Godfre Ray. The Magic Presence. Saint Germain Press. ISBN 1-878891-06-5
• Saint Germain. I AM Discourses. Saint Germain Press. ISBN 1-878891-48-0
• Peter Mt. Shasta. "Lady Master Pearl, My Teacher." Church of the Seven Rays. ISBN 978-0692356661

External links

• Official website of the Saint Germain Foundation, original publisher of Ascended Master Teachings beginning in 1934.
• Unveiled Mysteries, full text of Guy Ballard's first book, available online at no cost
• Psychic Dictatorship in America, a collection of a series of monographs or chapters by a former member, Gerald Bryan.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:01 am

Guy Ballard
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 7/10/19

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Guy Warren Ballard
Born July 28, 1878
Newton, Kansas, United States
Died December 29, 1939 (aged 61)
Nationality American
Other names Godfré Ray King
Occupation Mining engineer
Known for Founder of the "I AM" Activity
Spouse(s) Edna Anne Wheeler Ballard
Children Donald Ballard

Guy Warren Ballard (July 28, 1878 – December 29, 1939) was an American mining engineer who became, with his wife, Edna Anne Wheeler Ballard, the founder of the "I AM" Activity.

Ballard was born in Newton, Kansas and married his wife in Chicago in 1916. Ballard served in the U.S. Army in World War I, and then became a mining engineer. Both Edna and Guy studied Theosophy and the occult extensively.

Revelation

Ballard visited Mount Shasta, California in 1930, where he said he met another hiker who identified himself as the Count of St. Germain.[1] Mr. Ballard's experiences take place within the larger North American mountain ranges. Ballard provided details of his encounters in a series of books Unveiled Mysteries and The Magic Presence, using the pen name "Godfré Ray King."

Guy Ballard, his wife Edna, and later his son Edona Eros "Donald" Ballard (1918-1973), it is believed, became the "sole Accredited Messengers" of Saint Germain. Their teachings form the original nucleus for what are today called the Ascended Master Teachings, and are still being used by "I AM" Sanctuaries all over the world. [2]

Activity

The "I AM" Activity started from public lectures about these encounters and grew rapidly in the 1930s. Ballard lectured frequently in Chicago about Saint Germain's mystical teachings, in which America was destined to play a key role. By 1938, there were claimed to be about a million followers in the United States.

The "I AM" Activity describes itself as an apolitical, spiritual and educational organization financed by contributions from its members. Its parent organization is Saint Germain Foundation, with headquarters in Schaumburg, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago.[3]

The "I AM" Activity began after Mr. Ballard's alleged meeting with Saint Germain, an Ascended Master, whose experiences are outlined in Volume One of the Saint Germain Series of Books, "Unveiled Mysteries", published by the Saint Germain Press. The year was 1930 when Mr. Ballard met Saint Germain according to the SaintGermainFoundation.Org website.

Deaths of Ballard and his wife

Ballard died on 29 December 1939 and Edna Ballard died on 12 February 1971 A new dispensation was reputedly given so that the "ascension" could be gained (in the finer body) without taking the physical body, as Jesus had done. The "ascended master bodies" were reputedly already prepared for Ballard and Edna Ballard as noted in Unveiled Mysteries by Godfre Ray King (the pen name of Guy Ballard). It is reported that both Ballards ascended upon passing out of the physical body. Godfre Ray King has also reputedly given dictations through Edna Ballard (under the pen name of "Lotus Ray King"). Given the "I AM" Activity, old occult laws have been replaced including the teaching of Theosophy that, to become a master, a person would have had to ascend upon death to the fifth level of initiation.

Ascended Master Godfre

It is believed by those who adhere to the Ascended Master Teachings that Guy Ballard, after his death, became the Ascended Master Godfre.

It is asserted by these religions that the Master Godfre's previous incarnations were:[4]

• Richard the Lionheart
• George Washington

Ascended Lady Master Lotus

It is believed by those who adhere to the Ascended Master Teachings that Edna Ballard, after her death, became the Ascended Lady Master Lotus. (She used the pen name Lotus Ray King.)

It is asserted by these religions that the Lady Master Lotus's previous incarnations were:[5]

• Joan of Arc
• Elizabeth I of England
• Benjamin Franklin

Notes

1. King, Godfre Ray. Unveiled Mysteries. Chicago, Illinois: Saint Germain Press 1934 page vii: "The time has arrived, when the Great Wisdom, held and guarded for many centuries in the Far East, is now to come forth in America, at the command of those Great Ascended Masters who direct and protect the evolution of mankind upon this Earth."
2. http://www.saintgermainfoundation.org/S ... hings.html
3. Saint Germain Foundation. The History of the "I AM" Activity and Saint Germain Foundation. Schaumburg, Illinois: Saint Germain Press 2003
4. Prophet, Elizabeth Clare and Prophet, Mark (as compiled by Annice Booth) The Masters and Their Retreats Corwin Springs, Montana:2003 Summit University Press Pages 116-117 Master Godfre
5. Prophet, Elizabeth Clare and Prophet, Mark (as compiled by Annice Booth) The Masters and Their Retreats Corwin Springs, Montana:2003 Summit University Press Pages 195-196 Lady Master Lotus

External links

• The Saint Germain Foundation
• Saint Germain Press
• Maitre Saint Germain
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:09 am

Edna Anne Wheeler Ballard
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 7/10/19

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Image
Edna Anne Wheeler Ballard
Born Edna Anne Wheeler
June 25, 1886[1]
Burlington, Iowa, United States[1]
Died February 10, 1971 (aged 84)[1]
Chicago, Illinois, United States[1]
Nationality American
Other names Lotus Ray King[2]
Occupation Occultist[1]
Known for Co-founding the Saint Germain Foundation
Leader of the I AM Movement[1]

Edna Anne Wheeler Ballard, also known as Lotus Ray King[2] (June 25, 1886 - February 10, 1971), was an American occultist who co-founded the Saint Germain Foundation and served a co-leader of the I AM Movement with her husband, Guy Ballard. In 1944, Ballard and her son, Donald Ballard, were charged with mail fraud and their court case would eventually be ruled by the US Supreme Court as United States v. Ballard. Ballard's work with the I AM Movement is considered a predecessor to the current new age movement.[3]

Early life and education

Edna Anne Wheeler was born in 1886 in Burlington, Iowa. Her mother was Anna Hewitt Pearce and her father was Edward G. Wheeler, a railway clerk.[4] Ballard became a concert harpist in 1912. In 1916, Ballard married Guy W. Ballard. Two years later, in 1918, she had a child with Guy, named Donald.[1]

I AM Movement

The couple resided in Chicago, Illinois. Ballard began working at the Philosopher's Nook, an occult bookstore. She also served as an editor of American Occultists.[1] Guy was also interested in the occult,[1] and while hiking at Mt. Shasta in California in September 1931 he met an individual who claimed to be St. Germain.[3] Ballard called Saint Germain an "ascended master." Guy wrote back to Ballard, telling her about his interaction(s) with St. Germain. In 1931, the couple founded the Saint Germain Foundation and Saint Germain Press in Chicago. The called the umbrella over the two organizations the I AM Movement.[1]

Ballard's role within the Movement was as "accredited messenger of the ascended masters," alongside Guy. However, Ballard eventually took a step back as Guy led the organizations, serving as the primary messenger for St. Germain and other masters, including Jesus.[3][1] The Ballard's believed in past lives with Ballard believing she was Elizabeth I and Joan of Arc in her past lives.[5]

In 1939, Guy Ballard died and their son, Donald Ballard, became the leader of the I AM Movement.[1] Prior to his father's death, Donald Ballard also served as a messenger per the wishes of St. Germain.[3] However, both he and Ballard did not serve as primary messenger. Shortly thereafter, Ballard, Donald and other staff members were charged with mail fraud, with the charge being that the Movement was attempting to defraud mail recipients into joining a religion that was known to be false. Ballard was convicted twice, the second time after a ruling was overturned. The case went to the US Supreme Court and was ruled as United States v. Ballard.[1]

Ballard eventually began serving as a messenger for St. Germain and other masters in the fifties and in the sixties she hosted a radio show.[1]

Later life and legacy

Ballard died in February 1971 in Chicago. After her death, the Saint Germain Foundation and press were operated by the board of directors and select "appointed messengers". Additionally, no other movement members, including appointment messengers, have served as direct messengers of the masters, including St. Germain. During her role as messenger, Ballard left over 2,000 recordings of messages from St. Germain and the masters.[1]

References

1. "Ballard, Edna Ann Wheeler (1886-1971) | Encyclopedia.com". Encyclopedia.com. The Gale Group. Retrieved 28 November 2018.
2. "Edna Ballard [aka Lotus Ray King], leader of I AM movement at opening of trial on mail fraud in Los Angeles, Calif., circa 1941". Calisphere. Retrieved 28 November2018.
3. Paul Christopher (1998). Alien Intervention: The Spiritual Mission of UFOs. Huntington House Publishers. p. 68. ISBN 978-1-56384-148-4.
4. "Ballard, Edna Anne Wheeler (25 June 1886–10 February 1971), controversial founders of the "I Am" movement | American National Biography". American National Biography. doi:10.1093/anb/9780198606697.001.0001/anb-9780198606697-e-0801884. Retrieved 28 November 2018.(subscription required)
5. Giovanni Orlando (2010). The Book of Apocalypse explained by Archangel Michael and the Family of Light. p. 21. ISBN 978-88-88768-17-5.
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:13 am

James Ramsbotham, 2nd Viscount Soulbury
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Accessed: 7/10/19

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James Herwald Ramsbotham, 2nd Viscount Soulbury (21 March 1915 – 12 December 2004) was the elder son of the Rt Hon Herwald Ramsbotham, 1st Viscount Soulbury, British Conservative politician.

Army and marriage

Image

At the outbreak of World War II he signed up with the REME, rapidly mastering the professional techniques, meanwhile continuing his work with groups in England. He married Anthea Margaret Wilton on 5 April 1949 (she died 26 June 1950).

Life in Sri Lanka

From the late 1950s he lived in Ceylon (Sri Lanka), where his father had been Governor-General, as a Hindu yogi under the name Santhaswami. Although he ran the Sivathondan Nilayam at Chenkalady in Batticaloa, he also spent much time amongst the Veddas, aboriginal tribal peoples. He used to go off for long periods to their strongholds deep in the jungles and forests. Inevitably one newspaper or another would "scoop" the story of his death. He would subsequently emerge again from one of these forays, wondering what all the fuss was about.[1] He then moved to Kaithadi Ashram at Jaffna, where he lived until 1986.

Publications

• Yoga Swami: The Sage of Lanka

External links

• Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by the Viscount Soulbury
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

Postby admin » Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:18 am

P. D. Ouspensky
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 7/10/19

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P. D. Ouspensky
Born Pyotr Demianovich Ouspenskii
5 March 1878
Kharkov[1], Russian Empire
Died 2 October 1947 (aged 69)
Lyne Place, Surrey, England, United Kingdom
Nationality Russian

Pyotr Demianovich Ouspenskii (known in English as Peter D. Ouspensky, Пётр Демья́нович Успе́нский; 5 March 1878 – 2 October 1947),[2] was a Russian esotericist known for his expositions of the early work of the Greek-Armenian teacher of esoteric doctrine George Gurdjieff. He met Gurdjieff in Moscow in 1915, and was associated with the ideas and practices originating with Gurdjieff from then on. He taught ideas and methods based in the Gurdjieff system for 25 years in England and the United States, although he separated from Gurdjieff personally in 1924, for reasons that are explained in the last chapter of his book In Search of the Miraculous.

Ouspensky studied the Gurdjieff system directly under Gurdjieff's own supervision for a period of ten years, from 1915 to 1924. In Search of the Miraculous recounts what he learned from Gurdjieff during those years. While lecturing in London in 1924, he announced that he would continue independently the way he had begun in 1921. Some, including his close pupil Rodney Collin, say that he finally gave up the system in 1947, just before his death, but his own recorded words on the subject ("A Record of Meetings", published posthumously) do not clearly endorse this judgement.[3]

Early life

Ouspensky was born in Kharkov in 1878. In 1890, he studied at the Second Moscow Gymnasium, a government school attended by boys aged from 10 to 18. At the age of 16, he was expelled from school for painting graffiti on the wall in plain sight of a visiting inspector. From then on he was more or less on his own.[4] In 1906, he worked in the editorial office of the Moscow daily paper The Morning. In 1907 he became interested in Theosophy. In the autumn of 1913, aged 35, he journeyed to the East in search of the miraculous. He visited Theosophists in Adyar, but was forced to return to Moscow after the beginning of the Great War. In Moscow he met Gurdjieff and married Sophie Grigorievna Maximenko. He had a mistress by the name of Anna Ilinishna Butkovsky.[5]

Career

During his years in Moscow, Ouspensky wrote for several newspapers and was particularly interested in the then-fashionable idea of the fourth dimension.[6] His first work, published in 1909, was titled The Fourth Dimension.[7] It was influenced by the ideas prevalent in the works of Charles H. Hinton,[8] which treated the fourth dimension as an extension in space.[9][10] Ouspensky treats time as a fourth dimension only indirectly in a novel he wrote titled Strange Life of Ivan Osokin[11] where he also explores the theory of eternal recurrence.

Ouspensky's second work, Tertium Organum, was published in 1912. In it he denies the ultimate reality of space and time,[12] and negates Aristotle's Logical Formula of Identification of "A is A", concluding in his "higher logic" that A is both A and not-A.[13] Unbeknown to Ouspensky, a Russian émigré by the name of Nicholas Bessarabof took a copy of Tertium Organum to America and placed it in the hands of the architect Claude Bragdon who could read Russian and was interested in the fourth dimension.[14] Tertium Organum was rendered into English by Bragdon who had incorporated his own design of the hypercube[15][16] into the Rochester Chamber of Commerce building.[17] Bragdon also published the book and the publication was such a success that it was finally taken up by Alfred A. Knopf. At the time, in the early 1920s, Ouspensky's whereabouts were unknown. Bragdon located him in Constantinople and paid him back some royalties.

Ouspensky traveled in Europe and the East — India, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) and Egypt — in his search for knowledge. After his return to Russia and his introduction to Gurdjieff in 1915, he spent the next few years studying with him, and supporting the founding of a school.

Prior to 1914 Ouspensky had written and published a number of articles. In 1917 he updated these articles to include "recent developments in physics" and republished them as a book in Russian entitled A New Model of the Universe.[18] The work, as reflected in its title, shows the influence of Francis Bacon and Max Müller, and has been interpreted as an attempt to reconcile ideas from natural science and religious studies with occultism in the tradition of Gurdjieff and Theosophy.[19] It was assumed that that book was lost to the Revolution's violence, but it was then republished in English (without Ouspensky's knowledge) in 1931. The work has attracted the interest of a number of philosophers and has been a widely accepted authoritative basis for a study of metaphysics.[citation needed] Ouspensky sought to exceed the limits of metaphysics with his "psychological method", which he defined as "a calibration of the tools of human understanding to derive the actual meaning of the thing itself". (paraphrasing p. 75.) According to Ouspensky: "The idea of esotericism ... holds that the very great majority of our ideas are not the product of evolution but the product of the degeneration of ideas which existed at some time or are still existing somewhere in much higher, purer and more complete forms." (p. 47) The book also provided an original discussion on the nature and expression of sexuality; among other things, he draws a distinction between erotica and pornography.[citation needed]

Ouspensky's lectures in London were attended by such literary figures as Aldous Huxley, T. S. Eliot, Gerald Heard and other writers, journalists and doctors. His influence on the literary scene of the 1920s and 1930s as well as on the Russian avant-garde was immense but still very little known.[20] It was said of Ouspensky that, though nonreligious, he had one prayer: not to become famous during his lifetime.

Later life

Image
Ouspensky's grave at the Holy Trinity Church in Lyne, Surrey, England, photographed in 2013

After the Bolshevik revolution, Ouspensky travelled to London by way of Istanbul. In London, a number of eminent people became interested in his work. Lady Rothermere, wife of Harold Harmsworth, 1st Viscount Rothermere, the press magnate, was willing to promote Tertium Organum. The influential intellectual and editor A. R. Orage became deeply interested in Ouspensky's ideas and promoted their discussion in various circles. Prominent theosophist and editor G. R. S. Mead became interested in his ideas on the fourth dimension.

By order of the British government, Gurdjieff was not allowed to settle in London. Gurdjieff eventually went to France with a considerable sum of money raised by Ouspensky and his friends, and settled down near Paris at the Prieuré in Fontainebleau-Avon.[21] It was during this time, after Gurdjieff founded his Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man in France, that Ouspensky came to the conclusion that he was no longer able to understand his former teacher and made a decision to discontinue association with him. He set up his own organisation, The Society for the Study of Normal Psychology, which is now known as The Study Society.[22]

Ouspensky wrote about Gurdjieff's teachings in a book originally entitled Fragments of an Unknown Teaching, published posthumously in 1947 under the title In Search of the Miraculous. While this volume has been criticized by some of those who have followed Gurdjieff's teachings as only a partial representation of the totality of his ideas, it provides what is probably the most concise explanation of the material that was included. This is in sharp contrast to the writings of Gurdjieff himself, such as Beelzebub's Tales to his Grandson, where the ideas and precepts of Gurdjieff's teachings are found very deeply veiled in allegory. Initially, Ouspensky had intended this book to be published only if Beelzebub's Tales were not published. But after his death, Mme Ouspensky showed its draft to Gurdjieff who praised its accuracy and permitted its publication.

Ouspensky died in Lyne Place, Surrey, in 1947. Shortly after his death, The Psychology of Man's Possible Evolution was published, together with In Search of the Miraculous. A facsimile edition of In Search of the Miraculous was published in 2004 by Paul H. Crompton Ltd. London. Transcripts of some of his lectures were published under the title of The Fourth Way in 1957; largely a collection of question and answer sessions, the book details important concepts, both introductory and advanced, for students of these teachings.

Ouspensky's papers are held at Yale University Library's Manuscripts and Archives department.

Teaching

After Ouspensky broke away from Gurdjieff, he taught the "Fourth Way", as he understood it, to his independent groups.

Fourth Way

Gurdjieff proposed that there are three ways of self-development generally known in esoteric circles. These are the Way of the Fakir, dealing exclusively with the physical body, the Way of the Monk, dealing with the emotions, and the Way of the Yogi, dealing with the mind. What is common about the three ways is that they demand complete seclusion from the world. According to Gurdjieff, there is a Fourth Way which does not demand its followers to abandon the world. The work of self-development takes place right in the midst of ordinary life. Gurdjieff called his system a school of the Fourth Way where a person learns to work in harmony with his physical body, emotions and mind. Ouspensky picked up this idea and continued his own school along this line.[23]

Ouspensky made the term "Fourth Way" and its use central to his own teaching of the ideas of Gurdjieff. He greatly focused on Fourth Way schools and their existence throughout history.

Students

Among his students were Rodney Collin, Maurice Nicoll, Robert S de Ropp, Kenneth Walker, Remedios Varo and Dr Francis Roles.[24]

Self-remembering

Ouspensky personally confessed the difficulties he was experiencing with "self-remembering," which has later been defined by Osho as 'witnessing'. The present phraseology in the teachings of Advaita is to be in awareness, or being aware of being aware. It is also believed to be consistent with the Buddhist practice of 'mindfulness'. The ultimate goal of each is to be always in a state of meditation even in sleep. 'Self-remembering' was a technique to which he had been introduced by Gurdjieff himself. Gurdjieff explained to him that this was the missing link to everything else. While in Russia, Ouspensky experimented with the technique with a certain degree of success, and in his lectures in London and America he emphasized the importance of its practice. The technique requires a division of attention, so that a person not only pays attention to what is going on in the exterior world but also in the interior. A.L. Volinsky, an acquaintance of Ouspensky in Russia, mentioned to him that this was what professor Wundt meant by apperception. Ouspensky disagreed and commented on how an idea so profound to him would pass unnoticed by people whom he considered intelligent. Gurdjieff explained the Rosicrucian principle that in order to bring about a result or manifestation, three things are necessary. With self-remembering and self-observation two things are present. The third one is explained by Ouspensky in his tract on Conscience: it is the non-expression of negative emotions.[25][26]

Self-Knowledge

According to Beryl Pogson, author of The Work Life, "...the only real poverty is lack of self-knowledge."[27]

Published works

• The Psychology of Man’s Possible Evolution. Online.
• Tertium Organum: The Third Canon of Thought, a Key to the Enigmas of the World. Translated from the Russian by Nicholas Bessaraboff and Claude Bragdon. Rochester, New York: Manas Press, 1920; New York: Knopf, 1922; London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1923, 1934; 3rd American edition, New York: Knopf, 1945. Online version.
• A New Model of the Universe: Principles of the Psychological Method in Its Application to Problems of Science, Religion and Art. Translated from the Russian by R. R. Merton, under the supervision of the author. New York: Knopf, 1931; London: Routledge, 1931; 2nd revised edition, London: Routledge, 1934; New York: Knopf, 1934.
• Talks with a Devil (Russian, 1916). Tr. by Katya Petroff, edited with an introduction by J. G. Bennett. Northamptonshire: Turnstone, 1972, ISBN 0-85500-004-X(HC); New York: Knopf, 1973; York Beach: Weiser, 2000, ISBN 1-57863-164-5.
• The Psychology of Man’s Possible Evolution. New York: Hedgehog Press, 1950.
• Strange Life of Ivan Osokin. New York and London: Holme, 1947; London: Faber & Faber, 1948; first published in Russian as Kinemadrama (St. Petersburg, 1915). Online (Russian).
• In Search of the Miraculous: Fragments of an Unknown Teaching. New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1949; London: Routledge, 1947.
• In Search of the Miraculous: Fragments of an Unknown Teaching London, Paul H. Crompton Ltd 2010 facsimile edition of the 1949 edition, hardcover.
• The Fourth Way: A Record of Talks and Answers to Questions Based on the Teaching of G. I. Gurdjieff (Prepared under the general supervision of Sophia Ouspensky). New York: Knopf, 1957; London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1957.
• Letters from Russia, 1919 (Introduction by Fairfax Hall and epilog from In Denikin's Russia by C. E. Bechhofer). London and New York: Arkana, 1978.
• Conscience: The Search for Truth. Introduction by Merrily E. Taylor. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1979.
• A Further Record: Extracts from Meetings 1928–1945. London and New York: Arkana, 1986.
• The Symbolism of the Tarot (Translated by A. L. Pogossky). New York: Dover Publications Inc., 1976. Online version.
• The Psychology of Man's Possible Evolution and The Cosmology of Man's possible Evolution, a limited edition of the definitive text of his Psychological and Cosmological Lectures, 1934–1945. Agora Books, East Sussex, 1989. ISBN 1-872292-00-3.
* P. D. Ouspensky Memorial Collection, Yale University Library. Archive notes taken from meetings during 1935–1947.

References

1. https://www.ancestry.com/interactive/10 ... 1541013528
2. "Ouspensky Foundation". ouspensky.info. 2002. Archived from the original on 20 July 2018. Retrieved 7 March 2014.
3. Miller, Timothy (1995). America's Alternative Religions. SUNY Press. p. 260. ISBN 0-7914-2397-2.
4. Shirley, John (2004). Gurdjieff. Penguin Group. p. 111. ISBN 1-58542-287-8.
5. Moore, James (1999). Gurdjieff. Element Books Ltd. p. 73. ISBN 1-86204-606-9. The meaning of life is an eternal search.
6. Geometry of four dimensions by Henry Parker Manning
7. P. D. Ouspensky, The Fourth Dimension, Kessinger Publishing, 2005. ISBN 1-4253-4935-8.
8. Rucker, Rudolf, editor, Speculations on the Fourth Dimension: Selected Writings of Charles H. Hinton, Dover Publications Inc., 1980. ISBN 0-486-23916-0.
9. Scientific Romances by Charles Howard Hinton
10. A new era of thought by Charles Howard Hinton
11. P. D. Ouspensky, Strange Life of Ivan Osokin, Lindisfarne Books, 1947. ISBN 1-58420-005-7.
12. Ouspensky, P. D. (1912). Tertium Organum (2nd ed.). Forgotten Books. ISBN 1-60506-487-4.
13. Ouspensky, P. D. (2003). Tertium Organum. Book Tree. p. 266. ISBN 1-58509-244-4. A is both A and Not-A
14. Gary Lachman In Search of P. D. Ouspensky, p. 174, Quest Books, 2006 ISBN 978-0-8356-0848-0
15. Claude Bragdon, A Primer of Higher Space, Omen Press, Tucson, Arizona, 1972.
16. A primer of higher space (the fourth dimension) by Claude Fayette Bragdon, plates 1, 20 and 21 (following p. 24)
17. Rudolf Rucker, Geometry, Relativity and the Fourth Dimension, Dover Publications Inc., 1977, p. 2. ISBN 0-486-23400-2.
18. A New Model of the Universe: Principles of the Psychological Method in Its Application to Problems of Science, Religion and Art. Translated from the Russian by R. R. Merton, under the supervision of the author. New York: Knopf, 1931; London: Routledge, 1931; 2nd revised edition, London: Routledge, 1934; New York: Knopf, 1934.
19. Josephson-Storm, Jason (2017). The Myth of Disenchantment: Magic, Modernity, and the Birth of the Human Sciences. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. p. 123. ISBN 0-226-40336-X.
20. Gary Lachman In Search of P. D. Ouspensky, pp. 177-8, Quest Books, 2006 ISBN 978-0-8356-0848-0
21. Alex Owen The Place of Enchantment, p. 232, University of Chicago Press, 2004 ISBN 978-0-226-64201-7
22. Brian Hodgkinson (2010). In Search of Truth. Shepheard-Walwyn (Publishers). ISBN 978-0-85683-276-5. External link in |title= (help) p. 34
23. Bruno de Panafieu-Jacob Needleman-George Baker-Mary Stein Gurdjieff, p. 218, Continuum International Publishing Group, 1997 ISBN 978-0-8264-1049-8
24. "1947–1960 Dr F.C. Roles: New Beginnings – Ouspensky Today". http://www.ouspenskytoday.org. Retrieved 2017-09-12.
25. P. D. Ouspensky Conscience, p. 126, Routledge, 1979 ISBN 978-0-7100-0397-3
26. Gary Lachman In Search of P. D. Ouspensky, p. 121, Quest Books, 2006 ISBN 978-0-8356-0848-0
27. Beryl Pogson The Work Life, p. 5, 1994 ISBN 978-0-87728-809-1

Further reading

• Bob Hunter: "P.D.Ouspensky, Pioneer of the Fourth Way", Eureka Editions, 2000. [www.eurekaeditions.com] ISBN 90-72395-32-8. Later republished as: Don't Forget: P.D. Ouspensky's Life of Self-Remembering, Bardic Press, 2006. ISBN 0-9745667-7-2.
• Cerqueiro, Daniel: "P.D.Ouspensky y su teoría Espacio-Temporal Hexadimensional". Ed.Peq.Ven. Buenos Aires 2010. ISBN 978-987-9239-20-9
• Gary Lachman: In Search of P. D. Ouspensky: The Genius in the Shadow of Gurdjieff. Quest Books, 2004, ISBN 0-8356-0840-9.
• J. H. Reyner: Ouspensky, The Unsung Genius. George Allen & Unwin, London, 1981, ISBN 0-04-294122-9.
• Colin Wilson: The Strange Life of P. D. Ouspensky. The Aquarian Press, 1993, ISBN 1-85538-079-X.
• The Study Society: The Bridge No. 12, P. D. Ouspensky Commemorative Issue.
• Gerald de Symons Beckwith (2015). Ouspensky’s Fourth Way: The story of the further development and completion of P D Ouspensky’s work by Dr Francis Roles. Starnine Media & Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-0-9931776-0-6.
• Centers~ Influences From Within: The Essential Wisdom of Mindfulness and the Fourth Way by Cheryl Shrode-Noble (2017) ISBN 1974034062

External links

• Ouspensky Today: Includes an archive of material and images celebrating Ouspensky’s life and work.
• The Ouspensky Foundation
http://www.ouspensky.org.uk (2007, An Appreciation by James Moore; Bibliography by J. Walter Driscoll)
• Ouspensky's Historical Choreography
• Tertium Organum (full text at sacred-texts.com)
• Psychology of Man's Possible Evolution (full text at holybooks.com)
• New Model of the Universe (full text at Internet Archive)
• A Brief Discussion of Ouspensky's Thought by Michael Presley
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Re: Freda Bedi, by Wikipedia

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Interview with James George
by James George
The Chronicles of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche
June 27, 2003
© 2003 by James George

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Excerpt from recorded interview

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Although perhaps best known as a distinguished Canadian diplomat and an effective environmental and political activist, James George is first and foremost a spiritual seeker. He has been a devoted student of the Gurdjieff Work for more than fifty years and was a close disciple of the late Madame de Salzmann, one of Gurdjieff’s primary students. With her encouragement, he and his wife, Carol, explored the spiritual traditions that formed the foundation for Gurdjieff’s early training. While stationed in India, Sri Lanka, and the Middle East, the Georges met with a number of remarkable men, including Krishnamurti, Thomas Merton, Yogaswami of Sri Lanka, Dr. Javad Nurbakhsh (Sufi master from Teheran), Dudjom Rinpoche, and Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche. This underlying interest in spirituality is the thread that runs through all of James George’s activities and accomplishments.

During the autumn months of 1968, James and Carol George hosted Trungpa Rinpoche in their home, the Canadian Embassy in Delhi. Of that period of time, Rinpoche wrote:

Returning from Bhutan through India [1968], I was delighted to meet again with His Holiness Karmapa and also His Holiness the Dalai Lama. I also made the acquaintance at this time of Mr. James George, the Canadian High Commissioner to India, and his wonderful family. Mr. George is a wise and benevolent man, an ideal statesman, who holds great respect and faith for the teachings of Buddhism. [From the Epilogue to Born In Tibet by Chögyam Trungpa, (c) 1966 by George Allen & Unwin Ltd., by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Inc., Boston.]

At the 2003 Kalapa Assembly, which he attended as the guest of honor, James George spoke about the importance of applying our spiritual practice to the problems facing the larger world. I met with Mr. George in his Toronto apartment in June 2003 and asked him to talk about the life and legacy of Vidyadhara the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Here is what he had to say. -WF, October 2003

***

JG: Well Walter, I don’t know that I can do justice to this occasion but I’m very honoured to try, and even as we speak now, remembering Trungpa with much respect and much affection and asking his forgiveness for all the things I’ve forgotten that he told me and that you’d like to know. But some things have certainly remained very vivid and I suppose partly because I got to writing about Shambhala. His interest in Shambhala certainly sparked my interest in it. But let me go back a bit and begin at the beginning.

My wife, Carol, and I went to India in September 1967 and I think it was the next summer she was in London to drive a Land Rover back to India with our kids. I joined them part of the way on the return trip to India. In that visit to London, I think she met Trungpa for the first time – that would probably be August of 1968, or July. So it was natural that, having invited him to look us up in Delhi when he got back to India, he did, and in fact lived with us for most of that autumn, I think, from October through December 1968. The culmination of that visit was a beautiful pilgrimage we made as a family with Trungpa and I think Tendzin Parsons was also on that pilgrimage. Using our Land Rover, we went camping through all the Buddhist holy places in northern India, southern Nepal, Lumbini, Benares, Bodhgaya, and so on. It was a great time to be with him, and he of course made it very vivid, since I think it was in some cases, the first time he was able to visit these places.

It was, I think, during that visit in the fall of 1968 that Trungpa began to speak a little about Shambhala and Gesar of Ling and I, as I’ve written, asked him to describe what he was able to tell me about Shambhala. He pulled out his mirror – a metal disk mirror that he wore on a cord around his neck – and started to look into it with deep concentration and describe Shambhala, just as if he was looking out the window. It was very vivid and it got me researching Shambhala in a more serious way with a view to perhaps publishing something. Eventually I produced an article called Searching for Shambhala, which was published in Search: Journey on the Inner Path, edited by Jean Sulzberger. I had sent it to Trungpa in 1976 to see if I was allowed to publish this material and he gave his permission. In this article, I was exploring whether Shambhala was an allegory or a real place or both. And since that’s already published and on record, I don’t need to speak more about that perhaps.

Trungpa, at that time, was not certain what he should be doing on this mission. I think it was a few months later in the early part of 1969 that he decided to team up with Akong Rinpoche at Samye Ling in Scotland [ed. note: Samye Ling was founded in 1967.] and when he came to say goodbye to us before setting forth for Scotland and Samye Ling, I said to him, “You know, perhaps it’s out of place to say this to you, but I see Samye Ling and Scotland as much too small for what you’re going to be bringing to the West. You’re going to have to wind up in America somewhere, because that’s the big country.” Even at that time, the lamas were telling us that the dharma is now in the West and when we would ask them what they meant, they would say “America.” So I said to Trungpa, “Maybe your role is to bring the dharma to America and this would be a tremendous awakening, devoutly to be wished.” And in due course, I guess that’s what happened, although I never imagined at that time the scale of the awakening that he would create in such an extraordinarily short time.

The people he attracted, the intensity of the search, the shift in consciousness in so many of his pupils, I think, helped to shift the entire North American cultural scene in a significant way and that shift is continuing. This is one of the green sprouts coming up through the wasteland that our culture of the thirties and forties and fifties had pretty well created to the detriment of the entire planet, which is suffering ecological distress and crisis. He saw very clearly that the energy that animates us in our sitting practice and on our cushions has to be brought out into life. He saw that this energy is the yeast that can facilitate a change that is absolutely necessary at the cellular level in individual people, and from there into the whole culture. He saw that bringing meditation into our daily lives would make it possible, in due course, to avoid a culture of destruction and war, and violence and fear, and generate a culture of consciousness, nonviolence, and fearlessness.

In that sense, I think he always intended the Shambhala Training as a kind of outreach into the world and at the same time an inner preparation for the dzogchen teachings, the mahamudra teachings about being present in the moment no matter what — just aware — not thinking, feeling perhaps, but not reacting and maintaining this awareness in the face of whatever happens out there in life, ordinary life. So there were no boundaries for him between the secular and the profane. There were no distinctions, finally, between samsara and nirvana.

When I visited Trungpa in Boulder at his home in 1983, he was seeing, as I was, that we were in a rather threatened strategic situation. At that time, the United States was positioning its Pershing nuclear missiles on the border of East Germany. If fired, these missiles would reach Moscow in about 12 minutes and the danger of mistaken retaliation by misinterpreting radar signals seemed to be very great. I had been writing and campaigning about this dangerous situation in the peace movement, and I shared my views with Trungpa at that time. I think this supported his decision to move the centre of his operations to Halifax, out of the United States, and out of Colorado – where the strategic command was located at Colorado Springs – and find a safer haven for his people and for his work. Of course he accomplished that move to Halifax only a year before he died. But the decision has stuck. You haven’t moved back in any substantial degree, and I think Halifax and Nova Scotia have benefited from having this influx of practitioners who are committed to doing something more than sit in solitary or collective meditation. You have taken the practice into your lives and into the creation of a more enlightened society in so many practical ways.

There’s something else I could share from an historical perspective. When I visited Trungpa in Colorado in 1983, he already had the court thing going and the formality around his person. I noticed that many of the protocols that he introduced, had been lifted directly from his experience in Delhi living with us and observing how an ambassador functions and the formalities that surround him in a country like India, which loves formality. I think much of Trungpa’s court formality was inspired by his experience of diplomatic life with us.

When I was on that visit, he asked me to stay. And I said, really I’m supposed to be back in Crestone tonight. So I took my leave and got into my car and my car wouldn’t start. It had been working perfectly when I arrived, but now it would not start. He kept me there for several hours that way before he released the car to start, which it did in due course. But it was interesting that he produced that. So that’s another anecdote for you.

But these anecdotes only point to the real thing, which is the preparation of humanity for a level of consciousness that lives with awareness in the moment, and not just in the moment. We can learn to sustain that awareness by bringing it into our life, our conversation, our writing, our being, because it doesn’t come from us personally. It comes from a much higher source that is waiting to get into humanity, if only we would wake up and get with it. So, for each one of us, this search for Shambhala is a practice of coming to this moment in a different modality of awareness. I think Trungpa Rinpoche’s influence through so many lives, not only in North America, but in Europe and other countries, has been immense and little appreciated, because it has moved quietly and modestly and, for the most part, below the radar of the media.

I’m reminded of what Bernie Glassman has been doing in New York. The Greyston Foundation, which he started, provides housing for people, and operates a bakery that is a huge business now. Greyston has created a way for Zen to enter into relations with others who are practicing, whether they carry a Buddhist name or a Christian name or a Jewish name or a Gurdjieffian name. It doesn’t matter because we’re all seeing that, in origin, the human experience has gradually come to understand what could generate bodhicitta and nonviolent awareness. All of our activities – whether we’re trying to improve the conditions of the poor, or teach meditation to prisoners in the penitentiaries, or give bread to those who need it, homes to those that don’t have them – are just the outer support for an inner practice of freedom from conditions. Without that practice, no awareness can develop. Without that practice we lose the connection to a greater consciousness, with which we have been blessed.

I think we all share the hope that human consciousness can evolve. We’re probably not going to evolve much more physically, that’s been done. But we don’t want to be stuck with the consciousness that was appropriate for hunting and gathering and the violence that was even necessary to prevent ourselves being devoured by predators. We’ve now become the predators on the planet and are destroying our resources and each other, one-hundred-million dead from war in the last century alone. It’s really shocking as a measure of human consciousness as it presently is. So that transformation must take place or we’re down the tube and so is the planet. Therefore an evolution of consciousness is what I think fundamentally – aside from whatever lineage we represent – we’re all trying to work for and search for, in ourselves, and collectively in our little groups.

When Trungpa came to America, he was not presenting the Buddhism of Tibet, exactly. When the dharma crossed the mountains with Padmasambhava, it had to change, and did. And with Trungpa, it had to cross the seas and change, and that change is still in progress. Of course anybody who is trying to change a tradition is up against enormous fundamentalist resistance, both from those who understand and want to protect something in the original that could be distorted, and from those who are just attached to a form and want to preserve it without really understanding the living spirit that gives it life. So he had to withstand pressures from all these different angles, and at the same time make something that someone like Allen Ginsberg could appreciate. I worked with Allen in New York for several years and he owed an immense debt to Trungpa. Allen would never have been able to connect with the dharma if he had just been taught in the Tibetan style. So transplanting buddhadharma into a western context was a very tricky thing to attempt and to carry out and Trungpa Rinpoche did it in a very short time.

We were friends of a remarkable English lady, Freda Bedi, later known as Sister Palmo, who should be recorded as a patron of Trungpa. She started the young lamas program with her own money; I was one of the trustees of her foundation for awhile. She sent Akong, Trungpa, Sogyal, so many of the promising tulkus, to Oxford or Cambridge and gave them a university education, so that — knowing both languages in a sophisticated way — they could teach fluently in English and translate Tibetan texts into English. She understood that such translations would be so much better than the work done by Evans-Wentz, which were hopeless translations compared to what Larry Mermelstein and your group of translators in Halifax have been doing, as well as Chagdud’s people, and others. It has been a remarkable job, comparable to the translation from Sanskrit into Tibetan, with long lasting effects and benefit, I’m sure.

WF: Could you say anything about how Trungpa Rinpoche’s life might be viewed by future generations—

JG: I don’t know how his life will be assessed in the end. It’s too soon. He’s already recognized as a pioneer in bringing a fresh Buddhism from Tibet to North America and Europe. But he also needs to be seen as a spiritual pioneer in his own right. Look at the influence of someone like Longchenpa. He did it through his books and through his pupils, just as Trungpa did, and that influence is still touching lives today. There’s a wonderful translation of the Precious Treasury of the Basic Space of Phenomena by Longchenpa that just came out from the Padma Publishing line of Chagdud Rinpoche, which I thought was splendid, sort of the heart of dzogchen. I feel Trungpa was getting us ready to appreciate such teachings and be able to live them a bit, and to prepare others for the same transmissions.

He’s been criticized for his lifestyle, but I don’t feel that way. He was very frank with me about it. He said one time in India, “You know, my lineage of Trungpas have always had trouble with their emotions.”

I’d like to read a poem that I think is appropriate, if you’ll give me that book that’s on the shelf beside you. This is René Daumal’s poem translated from the French, written at the end of his short life when he had already become, I think, one of the outstanding pupils of Gurdjieff. René Daumal is quite well known in France as an avant-garde poet of the twenties and thirties. He died in 1944 at the age of 36. This poem was his last summing up.

I am dead because I lack desire
I lack desire because I think I have it
I think I have it because I do not try to give.
In trying to give, I see that I have nothing
Seeing I have nothing, I then try to give of myself
Trying to give of myself, I see that I am nothing
Seeing that I am nothing, I desire to become
And in desiring to become, I begin to live, I begin to live.

WF: That’s marvelous. Thank you.

JG: Well I think that’s paralleled in Trungpa’s teaching. In Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism, he is teaching us how to awaken enough and how to surrender enough. I think one of his greatest teachings was at the end of that book: “… these moments of surrender where we just give up.”

When Carol and I were back on leave from India in 1971, we visited Trungpa at Karme Chöling in Vermont. The three of us walked up to the great meadow together and he was enjoying the spaciousness of it – saying what a wonderful energy it had, which we felt too. The next time we were there was in 1987 for his cremation, watching all those rainbows out of a clear sky, hearing all the lamas chanting, feeling so many thousands of people practicing together. You know, such an event is not a small thing. It leaves a mark on the culture and it ripples out in ways we cannot understand.

WF: In your book, Asking for the Earth, I learned that Madame de Salzmann met Trungpa Rinpoche in India.

Image
Dudjom Rinpoche and Mme de Salzmann, India, 1971.

JG: Yes. I had two wonderful, visits from Madame de Salzmann in India, but she met Trungpa in Paris. She met other lamas: Dudjom Rinpoche, Kangur Rinpoche, and I think Kalu Rinpoche and Chatral Rinpoche, while she was in India. They called her the Queen of the Dakinis, with great respect. They got on very well, and I have a picture I’ll show you of Madame de Salzmann with Dudjom Rinpoche. I can’t tell you much about Trungpa’s meeting with Madame de Salzmann in Paris because I wasn’t there at the time, but I had arranged it. Namkha’i Norbu Rinpoche met her in Paris as well.

[ed. note: After the interview, Mr. George shared this excerpt from a letter he received from Mme de Salzmann, dated 27 May 1969:]

“I was horrified to hear about the accident of Lama Trungpa. I like him very much – He is clean and true.” Mme de Salzmann

WF: Is it possible that Madame de Salzmann wrote about her meeting with Trungpa Rinpoche in her journals—

JG: I don’t think so. If she did, I don’t know about it, and I think they might have told me. She was very interested in her contact with the Tibetans. She began to introduce sitting meditation practice in the late fifties and early sixties following her contacts with Zen masters. Madame de Salzmann visited Japan and met several of the leading Zen masters of the day before she met their equivalent, the Rinpoches, in the Tibetan tradition. She was very interested in both streams of teachings, and I believe her interest has influenced how we, in the Gurdjieff Work, approach sittings.

When DT Suzuki came to our New York groups and saw our movements, our sacred dances, he said: “I wish we had this in Zen. We have a meditation walk, but it’s not the same thing. It’s not so demanding.” He was very attracted to what Gurdjieff had done with the movements. I think that they are probably Gurdjieff’s unique contribution: the attention created by a whole class moving as one. When the dancers can give up their own personality movements, and really listen to the music and really feel the connection with the other movers, and what animates all of them, they move together like a flock of birds turning absolutely together. You can analyze a movie of a flock of birds frame-by-frame, as they swirl in one direction or another, but you cannot find a leader. They just do it together. When one is in a state to dance together in that way, it’s quite a different consciousness. Having had a taste of it while dancing, then there’s the possibility that we might be able to reach that state again on a cushion, or in conversation, or whatever we’re doing.

Trungpa was very interested in what Gurdjieff had tried to do because, in a way, he was trying to do the same thing. They both were confronted with the task of taking an understanding that was born out of eastern spirituality and (in Gurdjieff’s case) the roots of eastern Christianity, and translating that into language that was accessible to contemporary culture.

Gurdjieff spent three and a half years in Tibet. He wrote in Meetings With Remarkable Men, his autobiographical work, that he was taken to a central Asian monastery in Kashmir or Tibet called a monastery of the Sarmoung brotherhood. Now, Surmang, the seat of Trungpa’s lineage, is just a transposition of vowels, which I think, may conceal where Gurdjieff received much of his teaching. His essential teaching, his oral teaching (as distinct from what he wrote in his books) was all about what you would call dzogchen and I would call awareness or presence in this moment.

WF: Do you think that Gurdjieff made it all the way to Surmang—

JG: Yes, I do. I don’t think he would have used that code word for his most sacred place of teaching, if he hadn’t been there. I do think that’s where he was. But there is no record of that and he was very careful to cover up any traces of where he had been so that people wouldn’t just go dashing off to find something that wasn’t there anymore.

WF: In Trungpa Rinpoche’s will, he said something to the effect that he didn’t want anyone to systematize his teachings the way that Ouspensky had systematized Gurdjieff’s teachings. He felt that Ouspensky had systematized Gurdjieff overzealously.

JG: Perhaps he did. We owe Ouspensky a lot for the clarity of his report, but we’ve been trying to get out from under that sort of systematizing ever since, and I think we are getting out of it. The fact that we can talk about dzogchen commonalities and so on, is proof of that. Ouspensky recognized at the end of his life that he probably made a mistake in breaking with Gurdjieff over twenty years earlier. So all that time, Ouspensky was in England writing about what he called The System. After Ouspensky died in 1947, Madame Ouspensky called Gurdjieff back to New York to deal with all the Ouspensky people whom he had told to have nothing to do with Gurdjieff. And Gurdjieff told them, not in these words but in effect, “Start all over again. You’ve got it all in your heads and you’re not practicing in a right way. Don’t let the spirit harden into some form; because, although it creates all forms, it is not the form. Only from the living juice of the spirit is anything alive coming through.” This is just the sort of approach Trungpa might have made: shake things up. When forms become lifeless, they turn into idolatry. Idolatry is worshiping that which is less than the Unknown. To be entirely open, to surrender to the Unknowingness of the Unknown, is an extraordinary challenge, and it needs fearless warriors to respond.

WF: Do you recall if he corresponded with you at all during the years he was in North America—

JG: Really not, no. No significant letters, in any case. And yet whenever we could meet, we’d phone him, and meet him, and it was as if we’d never left each other.

WF: Well I know he always spoke so fondly of you. This has been a wonderful account. Thank you so very much for your insight and for your continued friendship and support for our community and for Trungpa Rinpoche’s teachings.
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