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Former Eckankar Author James Davis Speaks Out

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  • prometheus_973
    A Repost of James Davis (from Ford Johnson s Truth Seeker site) that explains why he left Eckankar: Rosetta Stone of God author J. Davis Responds to
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 28, 2011
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      A Repost of James Davis (from Ford Johnson's
      "Truth Seeker" site) that explains why he left

      Rosetta Stone of God author J. Davis Responds to Confessions

      From: James Davis
      Being the author of a book on the Mahanta titled THE ROSETTA
      STONE OF GOD, I would like to add my voice to those who have
      chosen to leave Eckankar. I quietly left Eckankar several years ago,
      having come to many of the same conclusions Ford arrived at in
      his own book. At the time I left, I wrote a letter to Harold saying
      I would make no announcements about my leaving. But I have since
      learned that it is a very "open secret" that I left - not through any
      acts of my own, but from various Eckists in who work at the main
      office, and a few others. So I now feel it is appropriate to say a few
      words about my leaving, and about Ford's book.

      During my almost three decades in Eckankar I became increasingly
      troubled by what I perceived as the weak integrity within the
      teachings and of the leaders. At the same time I struggled against
      these impressions because I deeply WANTED Eckankar to be the
      ideal teaching I had hoped and dreamed of. I deeply WANTED to
      Living Eck Masters to be more than I was witnessing.

      I came to the point in the late Nineties where I decided to give
      the teachings the fullest and deepest study I could (both on the
      Inner and the Outer) in order to settle my doubts once and for all.
      I chose to focus on the Mahanta as the theme of my study and
      contemplation since this doctrine is the heart and soul of Eckankar.

      I spent over a year researching every word ever written or spoken
      on the Mahanta that were available to me. I poured through decades
      of my personal journals looking for clues from my own experience
      to supplement the outer teachings. I inwardly invited the Nine Silent
      Ones and the Eck Masters to help with my project. Then I set about
      writing the best book I could on all I had found.

      The finished manuscript was sent in and quickly got approved
      for publication by Harold Klemp. For a few months I was euphoric
      and felt I had finally laid to rest my misgivings about the teachings.
      But the effect soon wore off for, after all, the issues that gave
      rise to the writing were still there - as Ford's book aptly
      demonstrates. The issues can't be made to go away by an act of
      fervent devotion. Or should I say, they can be made to go away for
      awhile, or by denial. But for many people, such avoidance tactics
      wear thin after a time.

      I realized the whole writing project of THE ROSETTA STONE OF GOD
      had been an utter failure in its prime objective of settling my issues.
      Whatever value it held for others, it failed for me.

      Yet, with the publication of the book came the usual attention
      that goes with being an Eckankar author. And in this I discovered
      how eager many people are to elevate the spiritual status of those
      who are reporting intimate spiritual experiences with masters.
      A number of Eckists, including Higher Initiates, either intimated
      that I was a candidate for Eck Mastership, or openly made comments
      or wrote letters to me to this effect. Some even had "got it on the
      inner" that this was the case. Those who know me well and were
      privy to some of this, found this elevation amusing enough. But
      it became abundantly clear to me how easy a person like Paul,
      who could not only write well, but who had a certain charisma
      and claimed an abundance of experiences with inner masters,
      would sweep followers off their feet.

      I have little if any charisma, but I can write a fairly decent book.
      This apparently was sufficient for many. The experience of being
      on the receiving end of admiring Eckists was a sobering first hand
      look from the other end of the scope of my own tendency to elevate
      the leaders of Eckankar.

      I won't go into the details of the issues I have with the Eckankar
      teachings, for most of these issues are addressed in Ford's book.
      My conclusions are not the same as Ford's in all cases. For example,
      whether people such as Rebazar Tarzs are real or not real hardly
      played a part in my decision to leave, whereas Ford categorically
      asserts the Vairagi masters are pure fiction. I had decided that,
      if men like Paul and Darwin and Harold were truly the best and
      brightest candidates that a band of high inner masters would choose
      to be the head of their order and be the chosen supreme channel
      for God on Earth, than I was not interested in following such an order.

      On the other hand, I felt, if there is an order of very high masters
      similar to the Vairagi that Paul protrayed, I seriously doubted they
      would hitch their wagon to a movement like Eckankar. So the whole
      debate about whether some of these masters are real or not is not
      a central one for me personally.

      There are a few other conclusions I reached that differ a bit
      from Ford's, and this is as it should be for anyone thinking for
      themselves. But on the whole, my own research and experience
      support Ford's conclusions. If you read Ford's book, you will find
      a multitude of issues worth carefully thinking over - a number
      of which you may never have considered before.

      Incidently, Ford has been accused by some critics as being too
      mental, of not showing an attitude of love. It would be hard for
      anyone to write a book deconstructing Eckankar without seeming
      hard-hearted to an Eckankar devotee. How do you call the beloved
      founder Paul Twitchell a liar and a fraud and still sound like a Golden
      Heart? But there is more to the demonstration of love than sweet
      platitudes, warm feelings, and cute stories. Tough-love is real, and
      in the spiritual tradition it leads (or pushes) Soul onwards towards
      God. I see no love in comforting others with gentle lies, nor in
      telling them they will suffer spiritual decline and misery if they
      leave the Eckankar club. One of the primary reasons I decided to
      leave Eckankar was precisely because the pronouncements of love
      made by the leaders was contradicted all too often by their actions
      and harsh denouncement of those who disagreed with them, or
      those who choose to follow another road, or of other "inferior" paths.

      As with many who leave the Eckankar religion, I have felt a certain
      amount of loss. Not just the loss of an ideal, but the absence of a
      community of friends, and the wonderful sharing that happens at
      many Eckankar events. But I have not regretted for a moment the
      spiritual implications of leaving. To have stayed, for me, would have
      been a rejection of what Eckankar calls The Call of Soul - a call which
      urged me to let go of a religion which had served its purpose in my
      journey, and had become an impediment to my further growth.


      Truth Seeker added these comments at the end of James Davis' post:

      Thank you for coming forward. There are many who hold on to your
      book as the final validation of the mahanta. That is why Harold was
      so quick to promote it. I hope that your candor and courage will
      encourage others,who are hanging fire and holding on to this last
      fabricated vistage of Eckankar doctrine, to also have the courage to
      read the book and then act on their inner spiritual guidance. Only
      then can the Eckankar spell be broken.

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