Robert Earl Burton founded The Fellowship of Friends in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1970.

Burton modeled his own group after that of Alex Horn, loosely borrowing from the Fourth Way teachings of Gurdjieff and Ouspensky. In recent years, the Fellowship has cast its net more broadly, embracing any spiritual tradition that includes (or can be interpreted to include) the notion of "presence."

The Fellowship of Friends exhibits the hallmarks of a "doomsday religious cult," wherein Burton exercises absolute authority, and demands loyalty and obedience. He warns that his is the only path to consciousness and eternal life. Invoking his gift of prophecy, he has over the years prepared his flock for great calamities (e.g. a depression in 1984, the fall of California in 1998, nuclear holocaust in 2006, and an ominous, yet unspecified new threat late in 2018.) While non-believers shall perish, Burton and his followers, through the direct intervention and guidance from 44 angels (including Burton's divine father, Leonardo da Vinci) will be spared, founding a new, and more perfect civilization.

Many regard Robert Earl Burton a narcissist and sociopath, surrounded by a largely greed- and power-driven inner circle. The following pages offer abundant evidence supporting that conclusion.

This archive draws
on official Fellowship publications and websites,
news archives, court documents, cult education and awareness forums, the (former) Fellowship Wikipedia page, the long-running Fellowship of Friends - Living Presence Discussion, the Internet Archive, the (former) Fellowship of Friends wiki project, and the editor's own 13-year experience in the Fellowship.

Presented in a reverse chronology, the Fellowship's history may be navigated via the "Blog Archive" located in the sidebar below.

Saturday, January 31, 1976

January 1976 Notes

January 1:
Afternoon “High Tea” is served at the "Lincoln Lodge," featuring plum pudding.
January 2:
There is a mass exodus from California underway, as many members have been assigned to open new centers (Hawaii, New York, Atlanta, Phoenix and others.)
January 15:
The entrance sign to the Fellowship property was vandalized, leading to nighttime “stakeouts” in hopes of identifying the culprits.
During January, “Mount Carmel Motors” – housed in the barn – was formally disbanded. It seems accountability and quality of workmanship may have been issues.

Robert Burton travels to Phoenix.

Regular membership payments ("donations") are now $100 per month.

On Sunday evenings, following dinner at the "Lincoln Lodge," a three-hour recording of Johann Sebastian Bach's "St. Matthew Passion" (BWV244) is often played.

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