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Re: Some Generic Words of Wisdom--Far Beyond Klemp's

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  • prometheus_973
    Hello All, Nice dialogue! Wow! Where to start? First, I would never suggest that a person go to the source (Sant Mat) of Twitchell s con. Religion is a
    Message 1 of 11 , Apr 11, 2012
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      Hello All,
      Nice dialogue! Wow! Where
      to start?

      First, I would never suggest
      that a person go to the source
      (Sant Mat) of Twitchell's con.
      Religion is a hierarchy of B.S.
      Sant Mat is just an older and
      "Eastern" version (with jargon)
      of the same con Twit used.

      Yes, I too experienced the
      opening of the "Third Eye,"
      so to speak, prior to Eckankar.
      TM helped with that via the
      process of becoming a siddha.
      I had many profound and
      phenomenal experiences
      with the use of sutras and
      meditation.

      However, the "non-religious"
      TM thing simply opened "new"
      pathways of the mind which
      were developing anyway. I
      was reading a lot of Eastern
      philosophy prior to this and
      enjoyed other experiences
      like Sufi dancing. I can't really
      give credit to any guru since
      it was my own effort and
      focus. I just needed to hear
      from an "expert" (i.e. Master)
      that anything experienced
      (or not experienced) was
      normal and as it should be.

      Also, I'm the one who
      gave the power to the
      outer guru when the true
      guru was me. Then again,
      life is a process of discovery
      that we all find (or miss)
      one way or another if we
      put forth the effort and
      look within via introspection.
      Sometimes it's timing, choices,
      or fate.

      Prior to this I experienced
      altered states via marijuana.
      I have to say that it did open
      inner doorways. However,
      I don't recommend it for
      regular use and I don't use
      it now because I enjoy
      being in control of my
      mind. Anyway, I'm glad
      that I had the mind expanding
      experience.

      As far as using the HU
      post Eckankar... yes, but
      not lately. There comes
      a time when (IMO) we
      should find our own way
      with our own words/tools.
      Whatever we use is just
      as valid as it is with all
      religions when communicating
      with the divine.

      Prometheus

      Janice Pfeiffer wrote:
      Forgot to comment on the drug thing. Yeah, I heard brief snatches of such things too and I knew one guy who did obviously appear to still be a pot head. Most people seemed to ignore him at functions and seemed to pity him. Looking back, I believe it was something that some of them, were they able to be openly honest, would have liked to talk about. Drug use is not something you can easily know about a person. There may be some active eckist who feel it adds to their experiences. From everything I picked up while in eckankar, even the use of tobacco is frowned upon. I think if eckist are doing it, it would be with out the blessing of their beloved mahanta or the org of eckankar.


      My husband who died because of drug and alcohol abuse often told me of out of the body experiences. He described a lot of things that I did experience at a later time with out drugs. I do believe that mind altering drugs can trigger meaningful experiences for some people even though at the same time, I think it causes an imbalance which eventually makes it hard for the drug user to differentiate between what is real and what isn't. I believe the drugs caused him to become disoriented to the point that he became earth bound for a while after his death.

      I would hope that spiritual seekers wouldn't use drugs for that purpose. It might work as a stimulant for experience initially but continued use will only destroy the mind and cause the individual to loose spiritual ground. To me, drugs like eckankar are a crutch that some people need because they can't face life on their own. I don't judge the drug user. Life can be hard and wanting to know about things beyond this earth is something most desirable. I just feel the advantages of drug use is not equivalent to what the drugs take away.

      Well, that is my humble opinion based on what I have experienced. In spirit may you all be blessed.



      Russ Rodnick wrote:

      I steered away from people that I felt uncomfortable around. Some of my friends were unpopular, but we shared a connection. I noticed that there was a hierarchy and I wasn't really interested in being a part of that.

      I remember once at a regional the new RESA, admitted that drugs opened his eyes to other realities. You should have heard the commotion! OMG. Talk about stirrring it up! And most of the people there knew exactly what he was talking about!! But that showed me that the Brother's of the Leaf weren't unified at all. He was being sincere which is a rare quality and very desirable.

      Somehow people feel that spiritual means I'm better than you. But not everyone was like that.

      Actually you mention something about the teachings didn't work. See for me, I really had some interesting experiences. But experiences aren't how I judge spiritual progress. for me it's about some other things. Like non identifying, and being able to stay in the moment, to be present. See, I think that eckankar taught us to overlay happiness thus deny what is happening at deeper levels of our conscoussness. We in eck didn't think it was good to talk about anything that wasn't a spiritual upper. Like if you have a struggle, don't talk it over in eck meetings, just go to an esa and give it over to the eck. so we as people weren't being real with each other, which I really wanted and always tried to acknowledge what was really going on with people. I always got looks from other HI's, but I din't care about that so much.

      The challenge is not to identify with what is going on. to me that is more about freedom and detachment than what is practiced in eckankar. also, if we are depending on mahanta or whatever, it's a spiritual welfare program. ironically, that is what pt, warned against. I'm not an apologist for eckankar, I just know that it was, for me, a mixed bag.

      I think maybe spirit finds a way.



      Janice Pfeiffer wrote:

      Unlike you, Russ, I felt I lost myself while in eckankar. It took some time after I left to feel like myself again. It was the environment of eckankar and how the people acted that confused me so badly I think. There seemed to be a world of difference in how the people were and how the eck teachings said it should be. Eventually, I grew to feel empty in eckankar because of the lack of evidence that any of the teachings really worked as far as the relationships I saw among eckist. There was such a lack of unity. The gossip and the back biting among them was far worse than in any religious or spiritual group I ever saw. When I attempted to talk about it to individuals in eckankar while attempting to understand it, I was told that I was being judgmental. Most of the eckist I saw acted like very immature, ego ridden idiots who were all about themselves. It wasn't a pleasant environment and it certainly didn't encourage new members to stick around. That group wasn't growing at all. None the less, I tried hard to believe that it was my attitude that needed to change because I wanted so much to believe that what I read in the teachings really did work.

      For a while after I walked away, I did continue to use hu because I always found it comforting. I weaned myself off of it because it was too big a part of eckankar to keep. The only lasting concept that I took away from eckankar was the concept of the golden tongue wisdom. The idea that one hears what one needs to hear when one needs to hear it is still valid for me. You might hear something a dozen times with out giving it real value until you can some how apply it to your own life. Then suddenly it has new meaning. Or you might have an issue that you are mulling over and suddenly you hear something that may not have even been meant for you and suddenly with it, you have the clarity you need to put things in perspective.

      I have always been a little to analytical. I have always questioned more with my mind than I accept with my heart. Since leaving eckankar, I have learned to shut down the mental aspects more and I feel like more of a loving being. In fact, sometimes I almost feel like I enter what I can only refer to as a state of grace when I feel like I have an inner knowing that feels more perfect than any experience I ever had previously. It takes effort to get there and even more to maintain it. It is my belief that the brain is only useful for taking care of day to day activity. For me it was necessary to learn to shut it down to grow more spiritually. I think for me it was impossible to advance spiritually in eckankar for that reason. All the concepts and eckankar crappy crap kept me locked into mental energy. My spiritual freedom came from going within to see and feel soul. Looking back, eckankar chains its people with supposed duties to the master to the point that I don't know how they can justify even talking about spiritual freedom.

      I will say that had I not experienced eckankar, I might not have ever known what spiritual freedom was. It was only after experiencing the chains of eckankar that I truly felt free when I walked away. So although I have nothing but contempt for eckankar now, I must say that it did contribute to my growth but not in the way they claim. It showed me everythig that I didn't want or need.



      Russ Rodnick wrote:

      Have any of you kept up with any of the spiritual practices you learned while in Eck, or have you been able to adopt them to a generic format dropping the eck words and ideas and going back to more generic form?
      I get something from declaring myself a channel for spirit and simply listening and feeling my body and breath. I mean most everything was taken from other more established practitioners and authors so they(practices and ideas) have stood on their own feet. Though we didn't learn them from the original authors, we still have had contact with them.
      I suppose some of you feel so burned that you don't even want to hear any of this; I do understand that sentiment having felt it too. I am by nature a sensitive, so I have to have practices to help me stay balanced. I gained a strong sense of my self while in eck and did derive benefits.
      Stay open to the truth and what works!
      Russ

      prometheus wrote:

      Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.----- Max Ehrmann (The Desiderata).
    • Non
      I have known several people who were in TM and there were lots of problems in the community as well as many neglected kids, not to mention the cost. I heard
      Message 2 of 11 , Apr 17, 2012
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        I have known several people who were in TM and there were lots of problems in the community as well as many neglected kids, not to mention the cost. I heard recently that Opra is pushing TM and some small town where TM-ers are moving to. Now apparently they have their own schools for their kids with school uniforms. TM now has its own hierarchy and who knows what this means after the death of the founder. I guess they believe that their scam meditation mantras will bring about world peace. Kind of like eckists, they don't have to really "do" anything in the real world. There is also a lot of pseudo science going on as well.

        Here's some interesting web sites and funny videos:

        http://www.skepdic.com/tm.html

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFfQuCGU0ZQ

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYEF4SHLOPg&feature=related

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n98aq0jBm1s&feature=related

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=fvwp&v=t8saRttyZ_o

        Noneckster ; )

        --- In EckankarSurvivorsAnonymous@yahoogroups.com, "prometheus_973" <prometheus_973@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hello All,
        > Nice dialogue! Wow! Where
        > to start?
        >
        > First, I would never suggest
        > that a person go to the source
        > (Sant Mat) of Twitchell's con.
        > Religion is a hierarchy of B.S.
        > Sant Mat is just an older and
        > "Eastern" version (with jargon)
        > of the same con Twit used.
        >
        > Yes, I too experienced the
        > opening of the "Third Eye,"
        > so to speak, prior to Eckankar.
        > TM helped with that via the
        > process of becoming a siddha.
        > I had many profound and
        > phenomenal experiences
        > with the use of sutras and
        > meditation.
        >
        > However, the "non-religious"
        > TM thing simply opened "new"
        > pathways of the mind which
        > were developing anyway. I
        > was reading a lot of Eastern
        > philosophy prior to this and
        > enjoyed other experiences
        > like Sufi dancing. I can't really
        > give credit to any guru since
        > it was my own effort and
        > focus. I just needed to hear
        > from an "expert" (i.e. Master)
        > that anything experienced
        > (or not experienced) was
        > normal and as it should be.
        >
        > Also, I'm the one who
        > gave the power to the
        > outer guru when the true
        > guru was me. Then again,
        > life is a process of discovery
        > that we all find (or miss)
        > one way or another if we
        > put forth the effort and
        > look within via introspection.
        > Sometimes it's timing, choices,
        > or fate.
        >
        > Prior to this I experienced
        > altered states via marijuana.
        > I have to say that it did open
        > inner doorways. However,
        > I don't recommend it for
        > regular use and I don't use
        > it now because I enjoy
        > being in control of my
        > mind. Anyway, I'm glad
        > that I had the mind expanding
        > experience.
        >
        > As far as using the HU
        > post Eckankar... yes, but
        > not lately. There comes
        > a time when (IMO) we
        > should find our own way
        > with our own words/tools.
        > Whatever we use is just
        > as valid as it is with all
        > religions when communicating
        > with the divine.
        >
        > Prometheus
        >
        > Janice Pfeiffer wrote:
        > Forgot to comment on the drug thing. Yeah, I heard brief snatches of such things too and I knew one guy who did obviously appear to still be a pot head. Most people seemed to ignore him at functions and seemed to pity him. Looking back, I believe it was something that some of them, were they able to be openly honest, would have liked to talk about. Drug use is not something you can easily know about a person. There may be some active eckist who feel it adds to their experiences. From everything I picked up while in eckankar, even the use of tobacco is frowned upon. I think if eckist are doing it, it would be with out the blessing of their beloved mahanta or the org of eckankar.
        >
        >
        > My husband who died because of drug and alcohol abuse often told me of out of the body experiences. He described a lot of things that I did experience at a later time with out drugs. I do believe that mind altering drugs can trigger meaningful experiences for some people even though at the same time, I think it causes an imbalance which eventually makes it hard for the drug user to differentiate between what is real and what isn't. I believe the drugs caused him to become disoriented to the point that he became earth bound for a while after his death.
        >
        > I would hope that spiritual seekers wouldn't use drugs for that purpose. It might work as a stimulant for experience initially but continued use will only destroy the mind and cause the individual to loose spiritual ground. To me, drugs like eckankar are a crutch that some people need because they can't face life on their own. I don't judge the drug user. Life can be hard and wanting to know about things beyond this earth is something most desirable. I just feel the advantages of drug use is not equivalent to what the drugs take away.
        >
        > Well, that is my humble opinion based on what I have experienced. In spirit may you all be blessed.
        >
        >
        >
        > Russ Rodnick wrote:
        >
        > I steered away from people that I felt uncomfortable around. Some of my friends were unpopular, but we shared a connection. I noticed that there was a hierarchy and I wasn't really interested in being a part of that.
        >
        > I remember once at a regional the new RESA, admitted that drugs opened his eyes to other realities. You should have heard the commotion! OMG. Talk about stirrring it up! And most of the people there knew exactly what he was talking about!! But that showed me that the Brother's of the Leaf weren't unified at all. He was being sincere which is a rare quality and very desirable.
        >
        > Somehow people feel that spiritual means I'm better than you. But not everyone was like that.
        >
        > Actually you mention something about the teachings didn't work. See for me, I really had some interesting experiences. But experiences aren't how I judge spiritual progress. for me it's about some other things. Like non identifying, and being able to stay in the moment, to be present. See, I think that eckankar taught us to overlay happiness thus deny what is happening at deeper levels of our conscoussness. We in eck didn't think it was good to talk about anything that wasn't a spiritual upper. Like if you have a struggle, don't talk it over in eck meetings, just go to an esa and give it over to the eck. so we as people weren't being real with each other, which I really wanted and always tried to acknowledge what was really going on with people. I always got looks from other HI's, but I din't care about that so much.
        >
        > The challenge is not to identify with what is going on. to me that is more about freedom and detachment than what is practiced in eckankar. also, if we are depending on mahanta or whatever, it's a spiritual welfare program. ironically, that is what pt, warned against. I'm not an apologist for eckankar, I just know that it was, for me, a mixed bag.
        >
        > I think maybe spirit finds a way.
        >
        >
        >
        > Janice Pfeiffer wrote:
        >
        > Unlike you, Russ, I felt I lost myself while in eckankar. It took some time after I left to feel like myself again. It was the environment of eckankar and how the people acted that confused me so badly I think. There seemed to be a world of difference in how the people were and how the eck teachings said it should be. Eventually, I grew to feel empty in eckankar because of the lack of evidence that any of the teachings really worked as far as the relationships I saw among eckist. There was such a lack of unity. The gossip and the back biting among them was far worse than in any religious or spiritual group I ever saw. When I attempted to talk about it to individuals in eckankar while attempting to understand it, I was told that I was being judgmental. Most of the eckist I saw acted like very immature, ego ridden idiots who were all about themselves. It wasn't a pleasant environment and it certainly didn't encourage new members to stick around. That group wasn't growing at all. None the less, I tried hard to believe that it was my attitude that needed to change because I wanted so much to believe that what I read in the teachings really did work.
        >
        > For a while after I walked away, I did continue to use hu because I always found it comforting. I weaned myself off of it because it was too big a part of eckankar to keep. The only lasting concept that I took away from eckankar was the concept of the golden tongue wisdom. The idea that one hears what one needs to hear when one needs to hear it is still valid for me. You might hear something a dozen times with out giving it real value until you can some how apply it to your own life. Then suddenly it has new meaning. Or you might have an issue that you are mulling over and suddenly you hear something that may not have even been meant for you and suddenly with it, you have the clarity you need to put things in perspective.
        >
        > I have always been a little to analytical. I have always questioned more with my mind than I accept with my heart. Since leaving eckankar, I have learned to shut down the mental aspects more and I feel like more of a loving being. In fact, sometimes I almost feel like I enter what I can only refer to as a state of grace when I feel like I have an inner knowing that feels more perfect than any experience I ever had previously. It takes effort to get there and even more to maintain it. It is my belief that the brain is only useful for taking care of day to day activity. For me it was necessary to learn to shut it down to grow more spiritually. I think for me it was impossible to advance spiritually in eckankar for that reason. All the concepts and eckankar crappy crap kept me locked into mental energy. My spiritual freedom came from going within to see and feel soul. Looking back, eckankar chains its people with supposed duties to the master to the point that I don't know how they can justify even talking about spiritual freedom.
        >
        > I will say that had I not experienced eckankar, I might not have ever known what spiritual freedom was. It was only after experiencing the chains of eckankar that I truly felt free when I walked away. So although I have nothing but contempt for eckankar now, I must say that it did contribute to my growth but not in the way they claim. It showed me everythig that I didn't want or need.
        >
        >
        >
        > Russ Rodnick wrote:
        >
        > Have any of you kept up with any of the spiritual practices you learned while in Eck, or have you been able to adopt them to a generic format dropping the eck words and ideas and going back to more generic form?
        > I get something from declaring myself a channel for spirit and simply listening and feeling my body and breath. I mean most everything was taken from other more established practitioners and authors so they(practices and ideas) have stood on their own feet. Though we didn't learn them from the original authors, we still have had contact with them.
        > I suppose some of you feel so burned that you don't even want to hear any of this; I do understand that sentiment having felt it too. I am by nature a sensitive, so I have to have practices to help me stay balanced. I gained a strong sense of my self while in eck and did derive benefits.
        > Stay open to the truth and what works!
        > Russ
        >
        > prometheus wrote:
        >
        > Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.----- Max Ehrmann (The Desiderata).
        >
      • prometheus_973
        Hello Noneckster, Actually the TM schools and businesses in the U.S. have been around since the late 70s. It began in Fairfield, Iowa. There are, even, TMers
        Message 3 of 11 , Apr 18, 2012
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          Hello Noneckster,
          Actually the TM schools
          and businesses in the
          U.S. have been around
          since the late '70s. It
          began in Fairfield, Iowa.
          There are, even, TMers
          on the city council
          as well. They moved
          into the small community,
          somewhat like Eckankar
          did, but increased the
          local population two-
          three fold.

          What's amazing is that
          most TMers don't think
          TM is a religion, and it's
          not ever promoted as one.
          Nor, is "God" ever discussed
          in the presence of "citizen"
          (average) TMers. Most believe
          the hype (PR) that the techniques
          are stress reducers which
          also increases awareness,
          harmony, and world peace.

          There are even synchronized
          meditations to enhance the
          "TM effect." In the past TMers
          were sent to African countries
          where conflict was taking place
          in order to produce harmony
          and peace. Except, in TM there
          is a dress code for "Governors"
          (Lords of the Astral worlds)
          and the political leaders in
          these countries thought the
          TMers were, actually, CIA.
          LOL! It is common to send a
          TM group to Washington D.C.
          or to NYC when the United Nations
          is having an important meeting
          involving World Peace.

          What's funny is that Klemp
          has steered away from having
          synchronized HU Chants/Sings.
          HK has, even, forbidden local
          Satangs from having coordinated
          HU Chants when these are taking
          place at Major EK Seminars.

          When one is first initiated
          into TM there is a ceremony
          that is similar to the one
          that Eckankar uses, except,
          for some minor differences.
          Fruit is brought as a gift and
          is presented to the initiator.
          The initiator has a white
          handkerchief where he/she
          places white rice upon. Both
          the fruit and "White" rice are
          offered as gifts to the gods
          (devas). Prayers, are said to
          invoke the Devas while incense
          is burned. After this your
          Mantra will be given to you as
          decided by the initiator from
          a booklet provided to him/her.
          It is repeated and the initiator
          makes sure you understand
          how it is to be pronounced.
          But, they will, also, tell you
          that the pronunciation may
          change and that this is normal.

          As one progresses in TM
          Sutras are taught at retreats
          and in group situations.
          These advanced courses
          are more and more expensive
          and time consuming to
          practice on a daily basis.
          One meditates, reads the
          vedas etc., listens to audios,
          repetes sutras, levitates
          (hops), and reflects. There
          is always a tweaking while
          adding to one's daily "Program."

          What's amusing is that when
          I was joining Eckankar the
          membership donation fee
          was being raised and I heard
          some lower initiates complain
          about not having the time to
          do a 20 minute spiritual exercise/
          contemplation (once per day)!
          I set them straight. I told them
          that the cost of the TM Siddhis
          Program alone amounted to
          at least 20 years of Eckankar
          membership and that 20 minutes
          once a day was nothing when
          compared to doing, for one hour,
          "The Program" TWICE a day!

          Eckists are such wimps!

          Prometheus


          "Non" wrote:
          On Transendental Meditatiion and eckankar

          I have known several people who were in TM and there were lots of problems in
          the community as well as many neglected kids, not to mention the cost. I heard
          recently that Opra is pushing TM and some small town where TM-ers are moving to.
          Now apparently they have their own schools for their kids with school uniforms.
          TM now has its own hierarchy and who knows what this means after the death of
          the founder. I guess they believe that their scam meditation mantras will bring
          about world peace. Kind of like eckists, they don't have to really "do" anything
          in the real world. There is also a lot of pseudo science going on as well.

          Here's some interesting web sites and funny videos:

          http://www.skepdic.com/tm.html

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFfQuCGU0ZQ

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYEF4SHLOPg&feature=related

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n98aq0jBm1s&feature=related

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=fvwp&v=t8saRttyZ_o

          Noneckster ; )


          <prometheus wrote:
          >
          > Hello All,
          > Nice dialogue! Wow! Where
          > to start?
          >
          > First, I would never suggest
          > that a person go to the source
          > (Sant Mat) of Twitchell's con.
          > Religion is a hierarchy of B.S.
          > Sant Mat is just an older and
          > "Eastern" version (with jargon)
          > of the same con Twit used.
          >
          > Yes, I too experienced the
          > opening of the "Third Eye,"
          > so to speak, prior to Eckankar.
          > TM helped with that via the
          > process of becoming a siddha.
          > I had many profound and
          > phenomenal experiences
          > with the use of sutras and
          > meditation.
          >
          > However, the "non-religious"
          > TM thing simply opened "new"
          > pathways of the mind which
          > were developing anyway. I
          > was reading a lot of Eastern
          > philosophy prior to this and
          > enjoyed other experiences
          > like Sufi dancing. I can't really
          > give credit to any guru since
          > it was my own effort and
          > focus. I just needed to hear
          > from an "expert" (i.e. Master)
          > that anything experienced
          > (or not experienced) was
          > normal and as it should be.
          >
          > Also, I'm the one who
          > gave the power to the
          > outer guru when the true
          > guru was me. Then again,
          > life is a process of discovery
          > that we all find (or miss)
          > one way or another if we
          > put forth the effort and
          > look within via introspection.
          > Sometimes it's timing, choices,
          > or fate.
          >
          > Prior to this I experienced
          > altered states via marijuana.
          > I have to say that it did open
          > inner doorways. However,
          > I don't recommend it for
          > regular use and I don't use
          > it now because I enjoy
          > being in control of my
          > mind. Anyway, I'm glad
          > that I had the mind expanding
          > experience.
          >
          > As far as using the HU
          > post Eckankar... yes, but
          > not lately. There comes
          > a time when (IMO) we
          > should find our own way
          > with our own words/tools.
          > Whatever we use is just
          > as valid as it is with all
          > religions when communicating
          > with the divine.
          >
          > Prometheus
          >
          > Janice Pfeiffer wrote:
          > Forgot to comment on the drug thing. Yeah, I heard brief snatches of such
          things too and I knew one guy who did obviously appear to still be a pot head.
          Most people seemed to ignore him at functions and seemed to pity him. Looking
          back, I believe it was something that some of them, were they able to be openly
          honest, would have liked to talk about. Drug use is not something you can
          easily know about a person. There may be some active eckist who feel it adds to
          their experiences. From everything I picked up while in eckankar, even the use
          of tobacco is frowned upon. I think if eckist are doing it, it would be with
          out the blessing of their beloved mahanta or the org of eckankar.
          >
          >
          > My husband who died because of drug and alcohol abuse often told me of out of
          the body experiences. He described a lot of things that I did experience at a
          later time with out drugs. I do believe that mind altering drugs can trigger
          meaningful experiences for some people even though at the same time, I think it
          causes an imbalance which eventually makes it hard for the drug user to
          differentiate between what is real and what isn't. I believe the drugs caused
          him to become disoriented to the point that he became earth bound for a while
          after his death.
          >
          > I would hope that spiritual seekers wouldn't use drugs for that purpose. It
          might work as a stimulant for experience initially but continued use will only
          destroy the mind and cause the individual to loose spiritual ground. To me,
          drugs like eckankar are a crutch that some people need because they can't face
          life on their own. I don't judge the drug user. Life can be hard and wanting
          to know about things beyond this earth is something most desirable. I just feel
          the advantages of drug use is not equivalent to what the drugs take away.
          >
          > Well, that is my humble opinion based on what I have experienced. In spirit
          may you all be blessed.
          >
          >
          >
          > Russ Rodnick wrote:
          >
          > I steered away from people that I felt uncomfortable around. Some of my
          friends were unpopular, but we shared a connection. I noticed that there was a
          hierarchy and I wasn't really interested in being a part of that.
          >
          > I remember once at a regional the new RESA, admitted that drugs opened his
          eyes to other realities. You should have heard the commotion! OMG. Talk about
          stirrring it up! And most of the people there knew exactly what he was talking
          about!! But that showed me that the Brother's of the Leaf weren't unified at
          all. He was being sincere which is a rare quality and very desirable.
          >
          > Somehow people feel that spiritual means I'm better than you. But not everyone
          was like that.
          >
          > Actually you mention something about the teachings didn't work. See for me, I
          really had some interesting experiences. But experiences aren't how I judge
          spiritual progress. for me it's about some other things. Like non identifying,
          and being able to stay in the moment, to be present. See, I think that eckankar
          taught us to overlay happiness thus deny what is happening at deeper levels of
          our conscoussness. We in eck didn't think it was good to talk about anything
          that wasn't a spiritual upper. Like if you have a struggle, don't talk it over
          in eck meetings, just go to an esa and give it over to the eck. so we as people
          weren't being real with each other, which I really wanted and always tried to
          acknowledge what was really going on with people. I always got looks from other
          HI's, but I din't care about that so much.
          >
          > The challenge is not to identify with what is going on. to me that is more
          about freedom and detachment than what is practiced in eckankar. also, if we are
          depending on mahanta or whatever, it's a spiritual welfare program. ironically,
          that is what pt, warned against. I'm not an apologist for eckankar, I just know
          that it was, for me, a mixed bag.
          >
          > I think maybe spirit finds a way.
          >
          >
          >
          > Janice Pfeiffer wrote:
          >
          > Unlike you, Russ, I felt I lost myself while in eckankar. It took some time
          after I left to feel like myself again. It was the environment of eckankar and
          how the people acted that confused me so badly I think. There seemed to be a
          world of difference in how the people were and how the eck teachings said it
          should be. Eventually, I grew to feel empty in eckankar because of the lack of
          evidence that any of the teachings really worked as far as the relationships I
          saw among eckist. There was such a lack of unity. The gossip and the back
          biting among them was far worse than in any religious or spiritual group I ever
          saw. When I attempted to talk about it to individuals in eckankar while
          attempting to understand it, I was told that I was being judgmental. Most of
          the eckist I saw acted like very immature, ego ridden idiots who were all about
          themselves. It wasn't a pleasant environment and it certainly didn't encourage
          new members to stick around. That group wasn't growing at all. None the less,
          I tried hard to believe that it was my attitude that needed to change because I
          wanted so much to believe that what I read in the teachings really did work.
          >
          > For a while after I walked away, I did continue to use hu because I always
          found it comforting. I weaned myself off of it because it was too big a part of
          eckankar to keep. The only lasting concept that I took away from eckankar was
          the concept of the golden tongue wisdom. The idea that one hears what one needs
          to hear when one needs to hear it is still valid for me. You might hear
          something a dozen times with out giving it real value until you can some how
          apply it to your own life. Then suddenly it has new meaning. Or you might have
          an issue that you are mulling over and suddenly you hear something that may not
          have even been meant for you and suddenly with it, you have the clarity you need
          to put things in perspective.
          >
          > I have always been a little to analytical. I have always questioned more with
          my mind than I accept with my heart. Since leaving eckankar, I have learned to
          shut down the mental aspects more and I feel like more of a loving being. In
          fact, sometimes I almost feel like I enter what I can only refer to as a state
          of grace when I feel like I have an inner knowing that feels more perfect than
          any experience I ever had previously. It takes effort to get there and even
          more to maintain it. It is my belief that the brain is only useful for taking
          care of day to day activity. For me it was necessary to learn to shut it down
          to grow more spiritually. I think for me it was impossible to advance
          spiritually in eckankar for that reason. All the concepts and eckankar crappy
          crap kept me locked into mental energy. My spiritual freedom came from going
          within to see and feel soul. Looking back, eckankar chains its people with
          supposed duties to the master to the point that I don't know how they can
          justify even talking about spiritual freedom.
          >
          > I will say that had I not experienced eckankar, I might not have ever known
          what spiritual freedom was. It was only after experiencing the chains of
          eckankar that I truly felt free when I walked away. So although I have nothing
          but contempt for eckankar now, I must say that it did contribute to my growth
          but not in the way they claim. It showed me everythig that I didn't want or
          need.
          >
          >
          >
          > Russ Rodnick wrote:
          >
          > Have any of you kept up with any of the spiritual practices you learned while
          in Eck, or have you been able to adopt them to a generic format dropping the eck
          words and ideas and going back to more generic form?
          > I get something from declaring myself a channel for spirit and simply
          listening and feeling my body and breath. I mean most everything was taken from
          other more established practitioners and authors so they(practices and ideas)
          have stood on their own feet. Though we didn't learn them from the original
          authors, we still have had contact with them.
          > I suppose some of you feel so burned that you don't even want to hear any of
          this; I do understand that sentiment having felt it too. I am by nature a
          sensitive, so I have to have practices to help me stay balanced. I gained a
          strong sense of my self while in eck and did derive benefits.
          > Stay open to the truth and what works!
          > Russ
          >
          > prometheus wrote:
          >
          > Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be
          in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all
          persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the
          dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive
          persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others,
          you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser
          persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep
          interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the
          changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the
          world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
          many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be
          yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for
          in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
          Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of
          youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not
          distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and
          loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a
          child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to
          be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is
          unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive
          Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of
          life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
          it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.----- Max Ehrmann
          (The Desiderata).
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