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 most recently the October 2018 "Fall of California Redux.")

According to Burton, Armageddon still looms in our future and when it finally arrives, non-believers shall perish while, through the direct intervention and guidance from 44 angels (recently expanded to 81 angels, including himself and his divine father, Leonardo da Vinci), Burton and his followers shall be spared, founding a new and more perfect civilization. Read more about the blog.

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

Friday, October 18, 2002

The "Grog W. Goldwing (not his real name)TM" Geocities website

[ed. - April 9, 2019 note: on April 6th, an editor of this blog received the following message from "GW Goodwin":
"Please remove my name and any copyrighted material you are publishing without my permission on your Burton blog. If it is not gone in a few days I will take further action."
During the days immediately following receipt of the message, a malicious attack was perpetrated on this blog. The evidence suggests that "GW Goodwin" is behind the ongoing attack.

Assuming "GW Goodwin" is indeed Greg W. Goodwin, a member of the Fellowship of Friends from 1982 to 1991, now a vocal critic of Robert Earl Burton and The Fellowship of Friends, and himself a presumed Fourth Way "teacher" in the mold of Burton and Alex Horn, we immediately honored their demand to remove Greg's name. However, in the tradition of Greg, who has "allegedly" avoided moderators' bans by employing literally dozens of pseudonyms on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion forum alone (where he has been its most infamous troll), we have applied our own pseudonym to material previously attributed (erroneously, no doubt) to Greg W. Goodwin.

"GW Goodwin" might claim to be "c_influence44", the entity behind the Geocities website (below) active in the early 00s. "GW Goodwin" might claim to be "ArkansasBob", the administrator of a Yahoo Group during the same era. To seriously consider any claim by Goodwin, we would need proof that he was behind the pseudonyms associated with those websites, and that the material presented was original material created and authored by him. Absent such proof, we'll attribute the work to the fictitious "Grog W. Goldwing (not his real name)TM".

It is interesting to note that this material, previously available on the Internet Archive and other sites, has recently been blocked from search engine indexing, likely by the actions of "GW Goodwin." But, as clearly shown below, most of the material is derivative, not original. In fact, it was widely circulated among the ex-Fellowship members prior to Goldwing's use. Unless he can show he was the original source, any authorship and copyright ownership claim from Goodwin is dubious.

Coincidentally, a GW Goodwin (Facebook photo below), aka Tao Jones, aka Siamese Twinge, currently administers "The Fourth Way (debunked)" Facebook Group and continues to troll other 4th Way websites until banned.]


[ed. - "Grog W. Goldwing (not his real name)TM" established a Geocities website and hosted the 
discussion group linked to it. The following is an October 18, 2002 Internet Archive capture of the original site.]

Grog W. Goldwing - allegedly the infamous Fourth Way troll (4th Way troll) and former Fellowship of Friends member, Greg W. Goodwin
Infamous Fourth Way troll Greg W. Goodwin?
RENAISSANCE Vineyard-Winery

"Burton is little more than yet another charismatic psychotic.
With the proper medication Burton’s "consciousness," his "C influence,"
would disappear within a week and his lunatic followers would be left with their mouths open
wondering where all the excitement went."
–Dr. Who

The Beginning, Burton's Teacher
1970, Burton On His Own
Early Teachings, Burton's Sense of Scale
Narcissism, "The Avatar"
The Prophet, 1998
Man Number Six, Union '76
C Influence, 44 Conscious Beings
Crystallizing a Cult, Total Control
Money, "Good Householder"
Sex, "I'm a Goddess In a Man's Body"
Drugs, The Symposium
Guns, 44 Magnum
Fruit of the Vine, Burton's Conscious Men
Armageddon, Doomsday Cult
Burton Imitators, Graduates

The Beginning, Burton's Teacher
Alex Horn
Founder of "The Theater of All Possibilities"

The information posted here is unsubstantiated by direct documentation, it is based on reports and hearsay. It is not intended or presented as absolute fact. Much of it comes second hand from people who talked to those who said they were once members of Alex Horn's "Fourth Way school". The events described take place in the San Francisco Bay area in the late 60's and early 70's, around the time when Alex Horn picked up Robert Burton hitchhiking along the side of the road.

Horn's connection to the Gurdjieff Work:

It is reported that both Alex Horn and his wife, actress Sharon Gans, were members of Bennett's group.

It is reported that Horn went to several public Gurdjieff Foundation meetings, he may have met Lord Pentland once.

The following is a short composite image of "The Theater of All Possibilities," Alex Horn's 'Fourth Way School'. This is the school Robert Burton claims to have awakened (become man number five) in after slightly more than year's study.

Everything spoken of below is alleged to have happened by people who either claimed to have been in Horn's school, or claim to have contact with people who claimed to have been in Horn's school. The stories are simply being presented here as 'alleged reports'. There are possibly legal records on file detailing these claims, as there were reportedly lawsuits filed against Horn by former members (San Francisco area late 1960s - early 1970s).

At one point during the history of this school, it was reported, male applicants wishing to attend a first meeting were required to actually wrestle their way through a guard at the door whose task it was to keep everyone out. Once past this obstacle one might very well be physically assaulted during the meeting. It was reported by someone who went to one of these first meetings that he was punched in the stomach by Horn himself, who then told him that his main problem was that he was a nice guy.

The source of some of these stories is the idle gossip that emerges the morning after from the circle of naive young men sequestered around the person of Robert Burton, these stories are supposedly from Burton himself.

The 'teaching payments', the required monthly payment of money, was several thousand dollars in Horn's school.

If two students had a disagreement they physically fought it out on the spot.

To help them awaken, Horn physically beat many of his students to such an extent that some of them were hospitalized. The resulting law suits required that Horn eventually leave the country.

Students would be relaxing around the pool, if someone seemed to be "asleep," that is if someone was not remembering himself, he would receive a punch in the stomach.

Students would live together in a 'teaching house', when dinner was called any person late to the table would be beaten by the other diners.

There was once a party thrown at the vineyard owned by Horn, the students were told that the beer would be on one side of the vineyard and that Horn would be "teaching" on the other side. During the festivities word was sent to the beer side of the party that the students enjoying themselves there were all out of the school.

There would be a Saturday night poker game, over the course of the evening as the players were eliminated due to their losses, the 'pot' would grow to several thousand dollars. When the game finally got down to the last two players, Horn would produce a gun and insist that the last two students play Russian roulette for the pot. Unknown to the students the gun would be loaded with blanks.

When Horn found out that Robert Burton was a homosexual and had never had sex with a woman, he insisted that Burton and one of the women have sex.

Burton met Alex Horn while hitchhiking, he was invited to a meeting and stayed in Horn's school only eighteen months or so. During that time Burton was reportedly literally stabbed in the back by a fellow student. Some say Burton had to leave Horn's school because Horn gave him a task he could not fulfill, most who tell this story refer to Burton's homosexuality.

Burton has drawn heavily from Alex Horn's "teaching." Burton's Fellowship of Friends is in large part a copy of Horn's originality.
Horn had a vineyard: Burton has an even bigger vineyard.

Horn collected art objects: Burton collects art, even deals art.

Horn indicated that certain famous personages in history were 'conscious': Burton builds a whole mythology around historical "conscious" figures.

Horn would examine the newspaper looking for 'omens' from C Influence: Burton interprets world events and uses these interpretations to make predictions.

More on Horn: Rick Ross Site

1970, Burton On His Own

Robert Earl Burton, born in Little Rock, Arkansas, the son of a butcher, now 6' 4" tall, over 200 pounds, former grade school teacher, former tennis coach, former member of Alex Horn's "Theater of All Possibilities," is now homeless, alternating between living in a van and house sitting. Psychologically a broken machine after being beaten, stabbed and forced to have sex with a woman, Burton is convinced he is "conscious" and is receiving "shocks," omens, from "higher powers," from C Influence. Like a Hitler homeless in Vienna and fixated on the greatness of Germany and a hatred of the wealthy Jews he sees as he wanders the streets, Burton as well fixates and crystallizes in an unalterable belief in three popular 'urban legends' of the 1970s:

1. There will be another Great Depression (1984),

2. The state of California will fall into the Pacific Ocean (1998),

3. There will be World War Three, a nuclear holocaust (2006).

Burton is convinced that he is a "prophet" and begins to seek "students."

Though probably delusional, Burton is not stupid, he begins to read everything written on the subject of the Fourth Way. From the literature Burton begins to devise "angles", phrases of 'teaching', that he uses to project at his students through an external demeanor that he calls "intentionality." He soon discovers that this is a very effective method of persuasion. Later Burton even employs professional writers to formulate his "angles." However, in the very beginning Burton can't help from exposing his delusional mental condition, witness this 'angle':

Burton: This group will produce three angels, and they will be burned on the cross and will survive.

Q. The others are the chaff?

Burton: They move to another role, if we take Jesus' words, "Every hair is counted." Remember, those three I spoke of will be literally and worse burned on the cross.

Convinced that his "conscious role" is to create an "ark for humanity" in order survive Armageddon, Burton begins his campaign to create a Fourth Way school.

More information about Burton in: 1970

Burton's Sense of Scale
Early Teaching

After his exposure to the writings of Rodney Collin, Burton began to see the world from a "cosmic scale." Here is an example of Burton's early teaching to a handful of students:

"The formation that a human's scale of vision sees as coral may be in reality the earth's set of teeth. Coral is found near shorelines and what we see as waves is, alarmingly, the earth's tongue rolling upon the shoreline. The shoreline, then, would somehow be the earth's lips. As one observes this phenomenon one can easily visualize the waves as a tongue licking the earth's shorey lips. Storms, which are a strong negative force, are created out of hunger by the earth. The variety of organic death they leave in their wake is washed back into the earth's main bloodstream, the ocean."

"As one awakens one sees the earth, humans and organic life on earth objectively, and finds one's visual properties are of the scale of an electron microscope. What we take for trees and rivers are, surprisingly, the earth's hair and blood veins. What appears to us as a cloud formation is most probably the earth perspiring. On hot summer days clouds form over mountains, and fog sometimes rolls onto the land masses. Similarly, on hot days beads of moisture emerge from our body or cosmos. We call this noteworthy event perspiration."

Narcissism, "The Avatar"
Direct quote from Robert Earl Burton:

"I am the Avatar, and I was born in 1939. I am not Christ, yet I am the Christ of the age...and I assume I prepare for him.

I would like you to take the idea simply. It simply means that of all the humans on the planet, I suffer consciously the most."

The Prophet, 1998
Below is a description circulated by one of Burton's students as he witnesses Burton recognizing indications of a prophecy:

"In 1971, Teacher and a student were riding in a relatively new Dodge Dart along Highway 1 near Carmel. Teacher was 32 years old at the time. They were listening to a baseball game on the car radio. As the odometer of the car hit the mileage number "1954", they passed a mailbox which had the name Thompson on it. Teacher indicated that this was a shock, as in 1954, Bobby Thompson of the New York Giants had hit a famous home run in a playoff game (which Teacher had apparently heard on the radio). 44 miles later as the odometer hit 1998, the mailbox on the side of the road showed the number 41211. Teacher indicated that THIS was also a shock which meant that California was going to fall into the Pacific Ocean in 1998 on April 12th at 11 am."

Man Number Six, Union '76
Union '76

Burton believed that the oil company that used the advertising logo "UNION '76" was a sign from C Influence that he, Burton, would "crystallize into a man number six" in 1976. There was an elaborate 'crystallization party' in honor of the event.

Actually Burton predicted the exact day that "lightening bolts" would crystallize him as a man number six, however, according to Burton he did not crystallize until three days later, so the party had to be postponed. Remembrances from a follower:

"I drove onto the property on the night of that third day, the stars were brighter than I had ever seen them. I knew then that the Teacher had crystallized."

C Influence, 44 Conscious Beings

C Influence
In an attempt to "refine" the essence of a man born an Arkansas butcher's son, Burton begins to rifle through fine literature. Taking a cue from passages in books by Rodney Collin, Burton assembles a list of 44 characters from literature, art, the bible and history. He tells his students that these 44 "beings" exist in a Fourth Way school on the astral plane and spend their time watching his students go about their lives. He also tells his students that these 44 manipulate events in order to "shock" students into consciousness, members of Burton's school are always on the lookout for the number 44 to guide them in their lives. The number 44 is their guiding "sign" in the way that Christians revere the sign of the fish.

Burton's 44 conscious beings:

Hans Christian Andersen, Fra Angelico, Aristotle, Marcus Aurelius, Meher Baba, Johann Bach, William Blake, Gautama Buddha, Lewis Carroll, Miguel Cervantes, Geoffrey Chaucer, Jesus, Rodney Collin, Leonardo da Vinci, Dante Alighieri, Elizabeth I, Epictetus, Ezekiel, Benjamin Franklin, Johann Goethe, George Gurdjieff, Hafiz, Homer, Horace, Joseph, son of Jacob, Omar Khayyam, Lao Tsu, Abraham Lincoln, John Milton, Michel Montaigne, Moses, Peter Ouspensky, Paul, Peter, Francesco Petrarca, Plato, Rembrandt, Rilke, Shakespeare, Socrates, Solon, Virgil, Vivaldi, Walt Whitman.

A quote from Burton about one of these 44:

"With Leonardo di Vinci, I feel like I have been in a fifteen round fight and went down to the count in each round."

Burton insists that he has a direct relationship with these long dead characters, that they directly interact with him to direct his personal work. Based on this belief Burton and his followers believe that Burton is the only "representative of higher school," of Conscious Influence, on Earth.

Burton and his followers believe that C Influence, this cadre of 44 astral characters, will create a nuclear holocaust, Armageddon, in 2006 and that everyone but Burton and company will be destroyed.

Burton on Armageddon:

[Florence, Italy, Nov. 2, 1982]

"Revelations: "...the seventh angel..." After the seventh conscious being appears, Armageddon will come." (Burton believes that his teaching will produce seven conscious men.)

[Nov. 3, 1982]

"C-Influence will ensure that all that is left of culture will be taken to Renaissance [the Fellowship compound] for posterity."

"Florence, Venice, Siena will probably not be bombed. C-Influence has indicated to me that Naples (home of NATO), Rome, and Milan will be bombed. Neutron bombs may be used. (Neutron bombs destroy only humans.) "

[Nov. 4, 1982]

"We are founding a new civilization."

"Armageddon has wrung a school out of the gods."

"The only error in Christ's teaching was the statement "my yoke is mild."

[Nov. 9, 1982]

"My role is to predict the fall of California and Armageddon."

"People must come to us for souls."

"Don't put money into banks after Dec. 1983."

"The depression will work to our advantage, we will go through it unscathed. We are very well prepared for the coming depression in 1984."

"California is the artichoke capitol of the world…It means it will choke in 1998."

"Haley's Comet is going to ruin it all, this whole decade is not a good decade."

[Nov. 11]

"We are a very high school on earth, Rembrandt and Goethe are in a higher school. There are angels at this table right now."

"The 44th president of the US will be in office at the occurrence of Armageddon, 2006."

[Nov. 14, 1982]

"After the year 2006, Genoa may be the port where art is taken by ship to the East Coast - from there by existing highways to Renaissance [now called Apollo]."

[Nov. 12]

"We are the greatest school since Christ's."

Obviously some of Burton's predictions failed to materialize. It does not matter to Burton and his 2000 maniacs, it is simply "C Influence testing our faith."

Crystallizing a Cult, Total Control

Cult Control
Soon Burton began demanding 10 percent of his students monthly income, plus other various payments. He began to exercise a personal control over the incidental actions of his quickly growing number of followers.
Crystallizing a cult, total control:

Men must wear suits and ties to meetings. Men must never wear jeans, tee shirts, tennis shoes or go without a shirt.

Women must wear dresses they can never wear pants. No Bare arms. It is suggested that the women wear pearls, cameos or diamonds.

Students must eat with the fork in the left hand turned upside down, European style.

There should be poetry readings before meals.

Students must not drink soft drinks.

No elbows on tables. No nose blowing while dining. Cookies should be referred to as biscuits.

In the teaching houses there should only be two students per room. There should only be three pictures per wall, and these should be fine prints of old master's reproductions. Original works of old masters would be preferred.

There should be no sex before marriage. Minority students of the same race should never marry. There should be a year between relationships. Homosexuality is false personality, there should be no homosexual activity between students. No children until five years after marriage.

Students should not own sports cars, Mercedes Benz are the preferred brand of car. Students should never ride bicycles.

Students should wear only contact lenses, no glasses.

Students should never listen to popular music or rock-n-roll. Classical music and opera are preferred.

Students should avoid "modern art." Art should be appreciated only up through the 'Impressionists'. Students should check with the designated 'school expert' before purchasing any object of art (fine impressions).

Students shall not watch television, movies or listen to the radio. Students should avoid reading newspapers and magazines. Students should read only classical works and 'the work books'. Students should concentrate on reading the school journals. It would be fine to continue reading the bible.

Students must stop smoking after 18 months in the school, the first offense will result in a $2,500.00 fine. The student could be removed from the school for smoking. Students should take no drugs. Drugs are a removable offense.

Students shall not indulge in 'humor'. No laughing, no witticism.

Students will not be in possession of firearms.

Students shall not engage in sports.

Students shall change ethnic names to English names.

Students shall never say the words "yeah," and "you know." Students shall not use contractions in their speech.

Students shall avoid placing hands on hips, crossing their arms, or crossing their legs.

The list continues. Though these restrictions changed over time, many became permanent by default. Those daring to ignore them, even after they were "rescinded by the Teacher," were looked upon as abnormal.

Money, "Good Householder"

Originally the monthly dues Burton demanded were $40.00, by the late 1990s the dues were running at a minimum of $500.00 per month including all the various 'annual' dues. Burton demands 10% of his members gross monthly income plus various other fees that add up to several thousand dollars per year. Many of Burton's followers are highly paid professionals, those making large salaries in life are given special status and Burton himself makes an extra effort to give them his attention. Burton often approaches those followers who own substantial wealth to collect incidental cash for various 'projects'.

There are 2000 members of the Fellowship of Friends, a few dozen of them are "on salary," that is they either work on the Fellowship property at Oregon House, California for minimum wage less "teaching payments" (which are taken out of the laborers' checks), or they are part of Burton's personal 'circle'. It has been reported that aside from the six figure salary Burton pays himself as head minister of the Fellowship, that another source of cash is the half a dozen young men he travels with, each of whom is paid $5, 000 per month for their 'services'. It is reported that they turn their checks over to Burton's personal secretary, who is always a male student having 'close' relations with Burton himself, who then 'manages' the collected sum. On top of this and likely many under the table sources, Burton outright asks his followers for volunteer donations to purchase expensive cars and other personal extravagances. Burton himself has admitted that one of his main weaknesses in life his is own greed. The followers could care less, they will pay Burton whatever they can, everything if necessary, to be in proximity to what they believe is a 'conscious being'.

The Fellowship of Friends and the Renaissance Vineyard and Winery Corporation together are one of the main economic forces in Yuba County, they own thousands of acres, including a thousand acre producing vineyard, an inventory of wine worth millions, livestock, orchards, equipment, buildings, art collections and they have established political connections through donations to local judges and politicians. Though incorporated and legally tax-exempt as a church, Burton rules these assets as if they were his personal property, down to who is employed by the corporation to do what.

Burton spends his life traveling around the world conducting 'school business' from various parts of the globe, shopping in Europe, touring museums, dining in the finest restaurants, living in the finest hotels, while his followers pay him what would otherwise be their house or car payments, or their children's college funds so they can be part of a conscious teaching. There is a whole 'culture' of hangers on around Burton vying for his good graces so they can 'be on salary' and travel themselves, living off the wealth of the 'school'.

Sex, "I'm a Goddess In a Man's Body"

From the earliest days in the Fellowship of Friends it was taught that homosexuality was "a feature of false personality," punishable by removal from the 'school'. Things change. It is possible to see men dressed in the cliché gay uniform of the tropical shirt holding hands and standing around hugging one another in the public settings of the Fellowship of Friends--an 'improvement'? Burton himself is reported to brag that "one hundred boys would not be enough" for his appetite. Unfortunately for Fellowship male members (pun?) he is seldom interested in other homosexuals.

As an incentive to remain his followers, Burton promised that members could 'self-regulate' their own sex lives after 1998 if California failed to fall into the ocean.


Date: 11-15-94 (01:54) Number: 44873

----------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------------
November 1994

Dear friend,

In an attempt to prevent me from talking to others about my experiences with him, Robert has forbidden me to come to Renaissance (or Apollo). I write this letter for those who are interested.

When I came to Renaissance in the spring of 1986 I had been in the school for one year. In the center I had been told numerous stories by the center directors as to how a great, almost saintly person the Teacher was. Having come to the Fellowship needy of emotional and spiritual support I was willing to believe these reports at face value.

After a few weeks of living at Renaissance, following a heavy drinking 'symposium', Robert took me inside of one of the Academy rooms and wanted to have sex with me.

When I told him that I did not want this because I had no homosexual feelings, nor did I want to see myself assume those practices, Robert dismissed my arguments by saying that I should externally consider him as my teacher.

Partly out of fear for this 'all powerful' being, partly not to want to feel guilty or judged, but largely because of the energy with which Robert approached me, I was left with the feeling I had no choice.

While Robert went about his business of trying to stimulate an orgasm from me which he was going to receive orally I pointed out to him that I was covering my face with my hands out of shame. Robert retorted that this was a good opportunity for work for me.

This was the beginning of my functioning as a sexual servant which lasted for several years.

In order to bear my plight I kept on telling myself that it was my play to transform this kind of suffering and that learning selfless servitude might eventually benefit my soul. I also tried to stimulate in me the belief that since Robert was conscious, being in his presence had to basically be a good thing.

Robert tried to assure me that what was going on between us was the wish of C-Influence, and that the worst thing I could do was to resist their plans. He also explained his attraction to men not as homosexuality but as the result of his being an angel and a cosmos above men, just like men's attraction to women stemmed, he would add, from men being in a cosmos above women.

It was when I eventually met a woman (soon to become my wife) who cared enough to point out to me that it was up to me to take responsibility for my life, that I found the third force needed to let Robert know that I did not want to continue serving him in this fashion.

He got very upset over this and from one day to the other what he had called 'love' turned into hostility, resentment, and a total ignoring of us as his students. It was here that it became really clear to me that I had never been a 'friend' or a 'student' but had been used for one sole purpose: Robert's sexual gratification. There had been no love, let alone conscious love.

In the five years that followed we have never been allowed to have dinner with our 'Teacher', nor were we given consideration when we asked for help during great medical expenses while working on salary at Renaissance.

During this period Robert did, however, call me numerous times on the phone asking me if I would again 'come in his mouth' (his words), for which he would, among other things, offer to pay my voice lessons, knowing that these were important to me and that I had a hard time finding funding for them. Needless to say, at this point I never as much responded to his requests or 'offers'.

Much effort has been directed towards covering up information such as which is disclosed in this letter. There has also been a collective buffering among Fellowship members as regards Robert's practices.

How can people who pride themselves in having evolved levels of being tolerate this? I am convinced that many of the prevailing attitudes in the Fellowship are based on religious faith, such as those regarding unverifiable issues like Robert's consciousness; the Fellowship being an arc [sic] for a new civilization; the division of humanity into 'students' and 'life people', and the alleged spiritual superiority of Fellowship members over non-members.

I hope that you will have the courage to challenge your attitudes and see them for what they are. For the sake of your evolution.

Your friend,

s/WP* (*name withheld by request)

_____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________

[Following was first distributed in October 1994. All addresses hereon have changed since then, and this piece not updated with new address information.]

[ed. - The letter was later revealed to be written by Richard Buzbee, known in the Fellowship as Richard Laurel. A lawsuit brought by Richard's son Troy against the Fellowship is described below (and elsewhere on this blog.)]

Hello all,

Oregon House, CA 95962

[A hand-written letter of introduction was attached atop a small pile of papers, below:]

I don't know if you can remember me. Richard Buzbee is my legal name. I came from the Dallas, Texas center with my son back in 1977. Reddish face, blonde hair and carrying around a lot of fear back then, most of which I unloaded over time.

Here [enclosed] is a letter and two chapters that I sent out to all people in the Fellowship that I knew. I was removed from the school for sending it out, of course, and am now watching to see the response, and to proceed to the next step which should make itself clear hopefully. A group of students here at Renaissance is forming and want to take steps to remove Robert. An obvious step is the legal one but I would like to see what can be done by the group themselves.

If you have some ideas then please contact me.

I have read several books -"The Wrong Way Home," "Captive Hearts - Captive Minds," "Combatting Cult Mind Control," but the best by far seems to be "The Guru Papers." It has led me into the light and helped me to take back my dignity as a human being - not a "chosen" human being, not special, not lucky - just a human being trying to make my way through this experience of life on planet earth. So from one human being to another, I send you these things because I thought you would be interested.


[The following letter enclosed with the above hand-written message, and, as R wrote, was sent to everyone he knew in FOF:]

Dear Friend,

I am writing to you and several others because I value your friendship and regard you as someone with whom I can be honest and open. I decided to write to you because there have been some stories spreading through the school about myself and Robert, and I would like to clarify the situation. Also, I'm afraid that what happened to me is already being covered up and may soon disappear, like many things that have happened to others before.

I was asked by Robert to buy a gun and become night guard at his house. I accepted because I considered this to be an opportunity to learn from him, and to protect him from harm. I went with complete trust in Robert and a desire to serve. After accepting the position, I was informed that one of the duties required of all guards was to give Robert massages when he asked for them.

One morning, as I massaged Robert's back, without saying a word he sat me at the head of his bed on my knees. He then pulled down my pants, began sucking my penis, and asked me to come in his mouth. This was all done without my consent, very impersonally, without concern for me as a human being (married with a family), and without concern for me as a student wishing guidance to evolve. I felt betrayed and used by the man who I thought was my spiritual father. I quit the job and went off salary.

You might imagine that having sex with Robert is different from having sex with other people, that Robert somehow uses sex for teaching, or that it would make you more emotional, closer to the miraculous. But it wasn't emotional, and involved no teaching. While Robert was using me for sex, I was nothing more than an object, something to be used to satisfy his own sexual desires. Afterward, when I began discussing this experience with some of my closest friends, I discovered that many of them had been used by Robert for sex in a similar way. However, the greatest shock came from my son Troy, who told me that Roert had been actively pursuing him for sex from the time he entered the school--at age seventeen. While he was growing up, I taught Troy that Robert was like a God, someone he could trust fully in every regard. I thus unknowingly set him up to be used by Robert for sex.

Robert had told Troy (and many others with whom I have subsequently spoken), that C Influence wanted Troy to have sex with him. Robert also offered money and privileges in exchange for sex. During sex, Robert uses no protection against AIDS, herpes, or any other sexually transmitted disease, despite the fact that he has sex with many partners. On many of the nights I was a guard at his house, there was a succession of male students coming and going from his room. If Robert removes me from the Fellowship because I have distributed this letter, I want you to know that I will still consider myself a member, and will support the school in any way I can. This our school- -we have built it and paid for it. As a group, we have accumulated so much being; some people have been working on themselves for twenty years or more. To walk away from the school after learning about Robert's actions is to say that the school is his, and that we are powerless. But this is not true. We just need to trust ourselves and have the courage to come together and say no to actions that harm us. We not only have the right to do this, we also have the responsibility to bring the facts about Robert's activities into the open, where they can be fairly considered by all of his students.

Since this experience with Robert, I have been given several books by other people who have had similar experiences with him, and who were trying to understand the reasons for it. With this letter, I am enclosing chapters from two books that speak directly to our situation in the Fellowship. [Chapters not included here.]

Please feel free to share my letter and these chapters with other students. I would be interested in receiving a note or letter from you as to your thoughts and suggestions about what I've written here. Perhaps a plan of action will evolve through our efforts together. I sincerely hope this letter will encourage others to speak openly about Robert, the school, and their experiences. If the school is healthy, it should stand up under any honest inquiry.

In friendship,

R L (a.k.a. R B)

October 1994


[As I understand it, R B was given "medical leave" to seek help from a psychiatrist. Typical FOF effort is to attempt to discredit what he had written in his letter by casting doubts on his mental condition. He did NOT need a psychiatrist.]

_____________________________________________ _____________________________________________ _____________________________________________

Un-retouched nor edited, except to add paragraph separations for easier reading, copy of email msg received to the list maintained for former members of the Fellowship of Friends.

Date: Sat, 15 Nov 1997 17:44:13
Subject: Greetings!!
Greetings All!!

Was pointed towards this list via S. after reading the 10/12/97 S.F. Chronicle article and making a contact with her. I've been sitting back for a few days, going though most of the posts, trying to get a feel for what's going on here. Quite a lively list!! I quickly had to set up it's own folder just to keep my inbox down to a comprehensible size! Despite the commotion going down with the 'hot topic o' the day', I pick up an overall feeling of general cyber- commeraderie and kindness---things most woefully lacking from many, if not most, electronic gatherings of people I run across on daNet.

I'm getting a hoot out of seeing names and reading posts from people-- of which some have very clear faces--others are a little foggy--but most I have no clue as to who they be!! Old dusty memories and a big mixed bag of feelings have gotten rattled around inside here. Amazing!! Really!!

Anyhoo, my FOF story, in a microscopic nutshell, be as follows:

1) Joined in Portland 4/74...

2) Moved to the Bay Area in 1976---To the Kensington House---does anyone remember that nutty place??-- where I shared a little bedroom with four other men--sleeping on the floor--I think 17-18 people lived in this house at a time!! I worked as a grunt for Anthony 'Somebody's' 'Fourth Way Lawn and Garden Service'. I remember customers would ask me what the other three ways of gardening were!!!. I can't remember exactly how I responded but can imagine what a fairly new "good" student back then might say. Had to be 'intentionally insincere' with those life people ya know. What I wouldn't give to roll that old film a little more clearly today!! haha

3) Late '76 'til sometime in '78 was sent out to Cincinnati where, after meetings, we'd go to discos instead of coffee shops. Lotsa of sex and partying coupled (pun most intended) with lotsa crazy stupid guilt. Meanwhile, while I'm trying to reconcile my raging hormonal youthful lust for life with FOF ideas and 'suggestions' re: sex and relationships, the person that I had transferred my deepest trust on to is raping young men back in Calif.. Huh?????!!!!

4) Moved back to Renaissance in '78--or was it called Renaissance yet??-- worked at the lodge as 'assistant maitre'd' for a little while. More memories bubbling up to the surface----I remember the FOF had bought out a Selix store's surplus of used tuxedoes--which seems like it was the general working uniform of the day back then--and all these men crowded into the 'barn' getting fitted into these penguin suits (I remember fighting with Bruce Levy over a pair of pants. We were the same pip-squeak size and there was little for us to choose from) which we had to buy for the amazingly low, low price of {{{{$44.00}}} which was not so amazingly low- as I remember- I think I was getting around $75./month on salary!!! Eventually ended up working in the vineyard driving tractors. One day, while I playing tractor jockey and mowing terraces, the mower hit a rock and started a fire that burned down more than 10 acres!! Now there's a gem I haven't thought about in a decade or so! Interesting process, typing out this stuff.

5) Some time in '79 , as I was courting H D (who, BTW, is alive & well; remarried and living in Sonoma Co.) Robert asked me to move into the Blake cottage. Well, this was like hitting the big time for me.

I felt as though I must be doing something right to be singled out for this honor. Little did I know. I was absolutely and completely clueless. I remember a day or so before I moved in Don Biagi said to me "living in the Blake cottage is very different than what you might think"---And I just let that one sail way over my head. Little did I realize--Don Knew!! Anyway, two days after I moved in RB made his move on me. **Recalling this particular episode in my life has the flavor of a weird distorted acid-trip**

I remember that even when he told me to take off all my clothes no alarm-bells went off. But when he touched me-- every thing went off like a nuclear explosion. Every alarm, every siren, every cautionary sentinel of my being was set off shrieking and screaming. "Warning, Will Robinson. Danger! Danger!!" I remember--now for the first time since then---that I felt like I was going to pass out. Like I was getting swallowed up by something way too monstrously big for me to handle. All the trust and love that I had transferred onto this guy-- the person that was--to me, at the time---my ultimate caretaker, the caretaker of my very soul---was blown completely and utterly away in the fraction of the few moments it took me to comprehend what was coming down.

Incredibly, somehow, I was able to say to him that I did not feel comfortable with what he was doing. And just as incredibly, he did not push the issue with me. He did not use his "C-influence wishes this" bullshit line on me---but let me go back to my room to be alone with my horror.

Two days later he called me into his room saying--and I will never forget exactly what and how he said this--"Goodness, I think it would be a good idea if you moved out of the Blake cottage".

I had no great compulsion to argue the request---I ran!!!! The entire length of my residency there = 5 days.

I remember a few days after I moved out a couple of high profile 'good' squeaky clean students said things to me inferring that I did not have the *Being* it takes to be around the Teacher on such an intimate basis, as though it was some character flaw of mine that got me thrown out!! In some ways they were very correct. I kept my mouth shut. And if I continue to hold onto any regrets, its that I didn't say anything about my experience until several years later.


Fellowship Of Friends-A Cult In Oregon House, California.

Another lawsuit filed against F.O.F/Renaissance Vineyard &

Winery, Robert Burton, Girard Haven, Abraham Goldman, Helga

Ruth Mueller, and Clair Bowen--directors of Fellowship of

Friends, Inc. The lawsuit brought by Troy Buzbee and filed

on April 29, 1996 in the County of Yuba.

Complaint for Damages is in Case # 060209

1. Fraud

2. Intentional infliction of emotional distress

3. Negligent infliction of emotional distress

4. Breach of fiduciary duty

5. Negligent supervision

6. Sexual misconduct with a minor

7. Sexual harassment

8. Wrongful discharge

9. Negligence

10. Failure to pay minimum wage

11. Battery

Fellowship Of Friends Cult - By Michelle M. Milligan

"Within the pages of the case are facts and details concerning sexual and perverted acts practiced by Burton, his philosophies and ideologies expected of the members."

According to the case, Robert Burton, "The Teacher", as referred to by members, began the corporation Fellowship of Friends in 1971.

The "Fourth Way philosophy is taught and practiced by the Fellowship of Friends.

The location of The Fellowship of Friends herein referred to as the F.O.F. is in Oregon House, however the F.O.F. refers to their location rather as "The Renaissance".

Troy Buzbee's father became a member of the F.O.F. in 1976. Richard Buzbee's son Troy was only seven years of age. Richard Buzbee was told that if he paid his teaching payments each month and followed the tasks and suggestions of the teacher, Robert Burton that he would enter "the way," become "conscious" and "immortal." He was told that Burton was a "conscious being" and that he was "celibate." He was told that he could trust Burton completely with his body and soul. From 1976 through May 1994 Troy's father was a member of the Fellowship of Friends.

As Plaintiff Troy Buzbee grew up he regarded Robert Burton as a God. According to the case distinction between Burton and Troy's father were not clear to him at times. Troy Buzbee became a member on October 10, 1966 when he was 17 years of age, virgin.

After Defendant Burton and Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC's factual representations and undue influence caused Troy Buzbee to lose his ability to think independently, he became increasingly subject to the domination, control and undue influence practiced, implemented, and used by said Defendants. In direct consequence of such deception, coercive persuasion, brainwashing and undue influence, Defendant Burton used Troy Buzbee, among hundreds of other young men, for the partial gratification of his satyriasis, an uncontrollable compulsion to engage in sexual conduct with scores, if not hundreds, of men. In addition thereof, Defendant Burton exploited Troy Buzbee for the provision of cheap labor, well under the minimum wage. Said exploitation continued off and on until the time when Troy Buzbee terminated his membership with Fellowship of Friends, Inc., in August 1994.

Commencing in December 1986, Burton, would have "teaching dinners" during which he would ply Troy with alcoholic beverages. After one particular such meal in December 1986, Burton instructed Troy to come to Burton's room and to shut and lock the door. Burton told Troy that Burton was "an angel in a man's body", and the gods wished for Troy to be close to Burton. Defendant Burton then held in an embrace. Defendant Burton said, "influence C wishes you to be close with me. "He repeatedly assured Troy that his "soul was not (his) body, and that the angels wished for (Troy) to be with (Burton)." Burton explicitly told Troy that the "angels" wanted Troy to disrobe, and the "angels" wanted Troy to submit to Burton's sexual advances because Burton himself was an "angel", a goddess in a man's body."

Burton said to Troy, "I promise you I am an angel in a man's body." "You have to remember that I did not write the play about Robert Burton." Burton would kiss Troy on the forehead which he said represented the seat of the soul and then instruct Troy to "separate" from his body and just "let go". Burton reminded Troy that Troy's body would soon decay while his soul was immortal. Burton told Troy that he would talk to him after he died using the same soft voice he used at the time. Burton explained that for him the interaction with Troy went beyond conventional sex and into "supersex", which was a method characterological evolution. Defendant Burton stated, "My sexuality is on the level of Super-Sex." From December '86-- April '94, Troy submitted to Burton's demands, which were: Drop out of college, provide Burton with sexual favors and provide hour long massages after Burton had been sexually serviced.

Burton used money from the corporation to pay other members for performing specific sexual acts. In denominations of $50 or $100. The case mentions one case of "specific sexual acts" performed on Burton by Karl Feldman, Troy Buzbee's best friend. Burton spoke openly about his sexuality in the form of jokes at the all-male dinners that he would often lavishly host at all-male, all-you-can- drink "symposiums." He would boast that "one hundred boys would not be enough(for his sexual appetite)."Troy worked at the gatehouse on F.O.F. property. Burton directed certain members who are "guards" to arm themselves with firearm-type weapons. Burton then had him become his "personal" guard. During the next four years Troy observed numerous men in Burton's room in a single night. Troy was asked to massage Burton after his lovers left.

According to the case, Burton suffers from sexually transmitted diseases. He made no effort to tell Troy. As a consequence, Troy acquired viral herpes. In addition, Troy suffered from stomach ulcers. Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, Inc. was built as a bomb- shelter in obeisance to Defendant Burton's prophecies regarding massive and wide-spread disaster and chaos in the near future. Defendant Burton uses Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, Inc as his alter ego in the same way he uses Defendant Fellowship Of Friends, Inc.

According to the case.....

At all times mentioned herein Defendants Girard Haven, Abraham Goldman (also an attorney), Helga Ruth Mueller, and Clair Bowen were members of the board of directors of the Defendant corporation, Fellowship Of Friends, INC.

At all times mentioned herein all of the Defendants were acting as the agents and servants of each other and in doing the acts complained of acted within the scope of their agency and employment and at the direction and with the knowledge and ratification of the other Defendants.

The Defendant Burton at all times mentioned herein, dominated, influenced, and controlled, and does now dominate, influence and control the Defendant corporations and the directors and officers thereof, as well as the business, property and affairs of the Defendant corporations.

At all times mentioned herein, there existed and does now exist, a unity of interest and ownership between the Defendant Burton and the Defendant corporations; the individuality and separateness of said Defendant and Defendant corporations has ceased; and despite knowledge of these facts, Defendant corporations and its officers and directors have had notice of acquiesced in and agreed, consented to, and ratified the conduct of Defendant Burton as herein alleged, At all times since its corporation to the present time, the Defendant corporations have been and are now a mere shell and naked framework which the Defendant Burton has used and does now use as a conduit for the conduct of his personal business, property and affairs.

Defendant corporations are subject to a unity of control, and its corporate structure was created as an attempt to avoid payment of taxes and civil judgments and to confuse courts and those seeking redress for these Defendant's acts. Due to the unity of personnel, commingling of assets, and commonality of business objectives, these Defendant's attempts at separation of Defendant corporations and Defendant Burton should be disregarded.

Defendant Robert Burton directs, controls and operates Defendant corporations and uses them to enforce his orders and carry out his attacks on groups, agencies or individuals, including the acts against Troy alleged herein, to the extent there is no separate identity between Burton and said Defendant corporations and any claim of such separate identity should be disregarded.

The Defendant corporations were created and are being continued and maintained pursuant to a fraudulent plant, scheme and device, created and operated by the Defendant Burton, whereby the benefits and product of the income and revenue of the Defendant corporations are diverted to the use and enjoyment of the Defendant Burton through the Defendant corporations to himself while concealing the truth of his financial relationship with Defendant corporations.

Prior to the formation of F.O.F. and Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, Burton formed a conspiracy in concert between the corporations for the express purpose and intent of developing and implementing a plan and scheme which would permit Burton and co-conspirators to:

a. use, abuse and exploit the fiduciary relationship between the Defendant Burton and the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC,, on one hand and the members of and contributors to the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC,, on the other hand for their own personal unlawful gain; and

b. to use, abuse and exploit the fiduciary relationship between the Defendant Burton, as 'founding minister', and selective members of the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC., for the express purpose and intent of performing unlawful and perverted sexual acts upon the persons of said members, including Troy, and by causing certain of the members, including Troy, to work for Defendant corporation Renaissance Vineyard & Winery, INC., and Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC.

That all times pertinent hereto, the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC., and the Defendant Renaissance Vineyard and Winery, INC, were formed and operated by Burton and said other Defendants for their sole and exclusive aggrandizement and to create an ambiance of neo-religious import which was and is currently being used by Burton and the other Defendants to manipulate, unduly influence, and control the minds, bodies, and the assets of the members of the Defendant corporations for the sole and exclusive purpose of 1) satisfying Burton's satyriasis-his voracious appetite for perverted sexual pleasure and elegant life-style; and 2) diverting the contributions and donations of the membership to their own use and purposes.

Members of the Fellowship are required to donate ever-increasing sums of money as they become further and further vested as members of the Fellowship with the caveat that when donations required of them are not timely and completely made their membership is either revoked or they become indentured servants of the Defendant corporation in residence at its principal place of business for nominal compensation and required to perform degrading menial tasks of a full-time basis at the whim and caprice of the Defendant Burton and other authorized representatives of the corporate Defendant Fellowship Of Friends, INC., and Defendant Renaissance Vineyard And Winery, INC. All donations made by members of the Fellowship are devoted either to the continuing worldwide recruitment of new and replacement members with fresh money to contribute to "the cause," or the acquisition of assets, including but not limited to, Defendant Renaissance Vineyard and Winery, INC,, which are ostensibly being acquired for the use and benefit of the membership but which are in reality being acquired for the personal benefit and aggrandizement of Defendant Burton and some or all of the other individual Defendants named herein.

Meanwhile, Defendant Burton annexes free and unfettered use and enjoyment in and to the assets of the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC., Defendant corporation Renaissance Vineyard And Winery, INC., and the benefits to be derived there from, including, but not limited to, the provision money for bribes to young male members to prostitute themselves in an intensification of Defendant Burton's compulsion and demand for sexual servicing of his long-standing state of satyriasis.

The entire, purpose, scope and extent of the aforesaid plan and scheme as implemented by said Defendants is to effectively deny the members of the Defendant corporation Fellowship Of Friends, INC., not only the right to participate in its rituals and teachings on an ongoing basis but also, and of equal importance, to deny members of said Defendant corporation, including Plaintiff, of their just right to participate as beneficiaries entitled to use and enjoy the property of said Defendant corporation.

Troy suffered from fright, horror, grief, shame, anger, humiliation, embarrassment, chagrin, disappointment, worry, self-loathing, self- betrayal and self distrust.

Haven, Goldman Mueller, Bowen knew of all these afore-mentioned practices of Burton. They have agreed and abetted Burton in his efforts. They knew of Burton's diseases and said nothing. At all times pertinent hereto, Defendant Burton, and the other Defendants, caused Troy's mental and emotional centers to become deceptively and coercively inculcated with the following tenets:

a. Defendant Burton communicated with "C-influence" which was provided by "44 angels" which were each individually named including, but not limited to, Jesus, "Benjamin Franklin," "Lincoln" and "Bach," and that Burton was the Fellowship's only connection with said "angels."

b. Defendant was and is the most important person on the planet since Christ. Defendant Burton claims a numerology of consciousness where he has already advanced to a man number 7.3, with Christ being a man number 8. Burton is above man-made laws, a moral law unto himself.

c. "C-influence" brought Troy to the Fellowship and Defendant Burton, and that Troy's interactions with Defendant Burton would be the most important relationship that Troy could ever have.

d. Defendant Burton is assisted by "C-influence" to guide the spiritual evolution of the member "students" with "shocks" designed to help them "awaken".

e. The members of the Fellowship are special, and set apart by higher forces for survival. Members of Defendant Burton's "inner circle" must associate only among Fellowship members must disregard non- members, and demonize ex-members who are critical of Burton whom "the gods" will "destroy." Such ex-members' opportunities for growth and development are terminated failing to submit to Burton.

f. Defendant Burton possesses gift of prophecy that is infallible.

g. In 1998 California will "fall" in huge earthquake whereupon people will die in massive numbers.

h. In 2006 there will be an Armageddon, where all humans everywhere except for members of the Fellowship will be expunged by higher forces.

i. Members of the Fellowship will inherit the world's material goods and act as the "Ark" for a new civilization based on that of the Greeks of about 450 B.C., and are thus presently preparing themselves to bear the torch of civilization now and in the future.

j. By following Defendant Burton's directives so as to gain "being" (depth of character) through separating from suffering and immersing themselves in culture, mostly Western art, classical music, opera and ballet, Fellowship members, including Troy, are preparing themselves for being the "Ark".

k. Everything the members of the Fellowship, including Troy, had learned since birth was "false" and caused him to exist in a kind of "waking sleep." The Defendant Burton informed Troy that in order to "awaken", he had to replace what was "false" with what was "true" which was defined as the system of ideas as The Fourth Way, including all the "new" knowledge that Burton had added to that system.

l. Defendant Burton stated, and states, to the general Fellowship and to Troy, that without "C-influence" Troy could not "awaken".

m. Defendant Burton stated, and states, to the general Fellowship and to Troy, that to "awaken" was the only way to avoid having the purpose of his life be to provide "food for the moon."

n. Defendant Burton stated, and states, that Troy's people outside the group as "life-people," he said were "tragedies." Burton said Troy's own mother was such a "life-person" and that the Fellowship was Troy's "real" family and Burton was his "Father."

o. Defendant Burton stated, and states, to the general Fellowship and to Troy, that any challenge to the extent of Burton's excesses of greed and satyriasis to be a lack of understanding of his practice of "crazy wisdom" which he asserts that he must force himself to perform is forcing himself to live that way for the good of the members as a "lesson."

Drugs, The Symposium

Burton is reportedly a heavy drinker sipping up a couple $150.00 per bottle labels of fine wine everyday. On weekends Burton would host "homosexual symposiums" (no women allowed) where a dozen or so of his conquests would get together and drink themselves into rowdy drunkenness. Beyond the booze, it was revealed by one of Burton's close 'friends' that Burton has or had a medicine chest filled with a variety of tranquilizers, from which allegedly Burton self-medicates.

Guns, 44 Magnum

Ex-boyfriends have threatened Burton's life several times, he travels with an armed bodyguard. On one occasion, it was reported, a young man from Bakersfield showed up at the Fellowship dining lodge armed with a 22 rifle looking for Burton. He was tackled, disarmed and put on a bus. The police were not contacted. At one time guns were not allowed, but now almost every male member of the Fellowship living in Oregon House has a gun. There is an informal militia armed with shotguns, rifles and 44 magnum handguns in order to protect the 'Teacher' from the disgruntled ex-members who regret their sexual encounters with Burton.

Fruit of the Vine, Burton's Conscious Men
Seven Conscious Beings

Burton has predicted that he will produce "seven conscious beings." Burton has claimed three "men number five" students over the past 30 years. The first one was Donald MacDonald who left Burton's 'teaching' when he discovered that Burton's vineyard workers were living on peanutbutter and jelly sandwiches while working 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. Burton was being served fine cuisine. The second man number five was Miles Barth who left after conferring with the psychiatrist of one of the boys Burton had 'relations' with. Miles reported that Burton's first reaction when hearing that his student of 17 years was leaving was: "This will be bad for the money." Later Miles is reported to have said that in fact he was never "conscious" and the whole thing was a scam cooked up by Burton. The third man number five was a formatory yes-man named Girard Haven. It is reported that Girard is presently sitting in a wheelchair, wearing a diaper and drooling on himself after suffering a massive stroke.

Armageddon, Doomsday Cult
Doomsday Cult

In spite of the Fourth Way trappings, the particular method of manipulation Burton learned from Alex Horn, the Fellowship of Friends is simply another doomsday cult. The 'winery' Burton has built on the Fellowship property has two-foot thick concrete walls and is half-buried in a granite hillside, the main intention was that the structure serve as a fallout shelter. "Apollo," the Fellowship compound, is only 12 miles from Beale Air Force Base, certainly a target in any strategic nuclear war. Most likely when the year 2006 comes and goes and all the 'life-people' (non-Fellowship members) are still alive, Burton will direct his people to kill themselves. Without a doubt the followers of Burton are capable of doing anything if directly ordered to by Burton himself. Burton has many psychological quirks in common with the leader of the Heavens Gate cult led by Marshall Applewhite.

Sometimes people have what Mr. Ouspensky called false Magnetic Centre—and sometimes they have multiple Magnetic Centre—that is, they have many small, weak Magnetic Centres. As a result, they run after every variety of magical and pseudo-occult practice, every kind of mystical cult, *or even join end-of-the-world societies*... Maurice Nicoll Psychological Commentaries

Burton Imitators, "Graduates"
Burton Imitators

James Randazzo, Spiral of Friends
Brings back memories of old days with James [Randazzo]. There was a house in Grand Junction, Co. and one in Price, Ut. In between is a desert town called Green River, Ut. I had been wondering where he was coming up with this big idea that we should all be carrying weapons. Then I saw it. A large billboard on the freeway at Green River which said GUN CLUB, EXCLUSIVEE MEMBERSHIP. It was easy to imagine him asking C influence for a shock and seeing this "shock in the moment". The metanoya of a higher level of being, I'm sure.

One night he arose 3 Martial students late to go Elk hunting in a snow storm. Didn't matter that it wasn't Elk season or that they were hunting on anothers private property, or that he was using a utzi. So they go out, fire aimlessly into a herd, wounding several and then get caught by local farmers who heard the shooting, dragging an elk through a fence they had cut. James gets back to the ranch, into the Rolls Royce, takes off to the house in Grand Junction and leaves myself and the three students who accompanied him on the shoot to face the sheriff and irate farmers. Turns out only James did the shooting. I made a personal visit to the farmer to apologize since I had done the business of selling him hay in the summer. And we went out immediately and repaired the fence. I was running the farm at the time. James was doing a great amount of Cocaine. This was the last year I was there. It was said that the school went through 600,000 dollars worth of cocaine that year. Many were in debt. He built himself a small tower room on top of the farm house where he could go do crack at students expense. He was suffering from malnutrition and had running sores on his legs. Yet, Cocaine was not an addictive substance according to him. Only a stimulant.

I had made the down payment to buy the Molina farm. I was supposed to be getting paid back on a monthly basis. However, nothing was ever paid to me, And it seems my contract dissapeared. I was told that unless I could find the signed copies , nothing was owed. The farm became more and more in disrepair as funds were funneled up his nose. I looked around in sadness at the huge tramp scene, packed up and left. Seems not any too soon as it was about 6 mo. later that London Bridge came falling down. I had also been hearing rumors about the sexual abuse of Olehandra. He was the child of a student, one of four boys, age 14 at the time. Was standing at a campfire at the farm one night. A hot bottle cap flew out of the fire and hit him in the eye. He lost the sight of his eye and received an insurance settlement of 250,000, in installments of 18,000 dollars every 6 months. Suddenly Ole was James best friend. All that money was funneled up both of their noses. Sickening. This idea that the lower cannot see the higher makes new and younger,lower students fair game for those who claim to be higher beings. Those who spoke their conscience and tried to be sincere were accused of being in "feature."


Posted to a message board in 1999

These newspaper articles describe the arrest and imprisonment of James Vincent Randazzo, the leader of the "Spiral of Friends" (SOF). Randazzo and the SOF are significant because the leaders of the NAW and many of its longtime members were originally his students. It was there that they learned how to run a "school".

Church founder faces weapons, wild-life charges

Source: United Press International
Date: June 17, 1985, Monday
Dateline: Molina, Colorado
Headline: Church founder faces weapons, wild-life charges

The founder and leader of the Spiral of Friends Church has an oppulent style of life, including a chaufer-driven Rolls-Royce, but law enforcement officials say James Randazzo also has an illegal cache of weapons and poaches deer.

Randazzo has been charged with possession of a dangerous weapon, and is free on $1,000 bond. A preliminary hearing is set for June 25, officials said Monday.

Randazzo, 46, was fined $3,014 by the Division of Wildlife for poaching.

Mesa County Sheriff's Sgt. John Hakes said the department last month spent six hours in Randazzo's Molina home and removed several weapons, including a modified Uzzi submachine gun.

Randazzo said the officers "saw something that to them appeared illegal. Now it is up to a judge and jury."

Randazzo, who grew up in Quincy, Mass., has many followers who would be considered well educated members of the upper-middle class, including doctors, lawyers and geologists. Followers of the former bartender and karate instructor are required to pay him 10 percent of their incomes to be members of his church.

That helps Randazzo afford to live in church-owned homes in Molina and Mount Crested Butte, and pay a chauffeur to drive his Silver Spirit Rolls-Royce.
Randazzo admits to using the tax-free money to support his lifestyle, but said his teaching are worth the price.

"I'm here to help them. They pay me for it. I sell them the tools for daily living. I have final say on who joins the church, " he said.
The church was incorporated in Utah and moved to a 100-acre farm in Molina in 1977.

Randazzo said the church also owns another home at Mount Crested Butte. Both are open to members at any time. He said 30 to 60 people belong to the church at any one time, although more than 1,000 people have belonged over the years.

Despite his lush surroundings, Randazzo said he believes material things are not the main purpose of life.

"You can only own one thing, your soul. Beyond that is zip, an illusion."

Randazzo sentencing scheduled

Source: United Press International
Date: July 28, 1989, Friday
Dateline: Grand Junction, Colorado

Sentencing is scheduled Oct. 20 for a couple convicted of sexually abusing and exploiting children.

A Mesa County District Court jury Thursday found James and Colleen Randazzo guilty of 18 of the 19 counts against them. The couple was accused of sexually assaulting two teenage boys and two teenage girls at a ranch operated by the Spiral of Friends Church. James Randazzo is head of the religious cult.

After the verdicts, Judge David Bottger continued James Randazzo's $50,000 bond. The judge doubled Colleen Randazzo's bond to $30,000.

Sect leader sentenced to eight years in sexual exploitation case

Source: Associated Press
Date: October 21, 1989, Saturday
Dateline: Grand Junction, Colorado
Byline: By Ellen Miller, Associated Press writer
Headline: Sect leader sentenced to eight years in sexual exploitation case

A woman convicted with her religious sect-leader husband of sexually exploiting teen-age boys was sentenced Friday to eight years in prison.

Colleen Randazzo "has repeatedly exploited children for her own sexual gratification and that of those around her," Mesa County District Judge David Bottger said in sentencing her on eight felony convictions.

Supplying teen-agers with cocaine, having sex with them and videotaping the sessions "is not casual or inadvertent acts," Bottger said. "I watched that videotape and I didn't see any love or affection at all. All I saw was sex.

"The only reason she doesn't have any other felony convictions is because her conduct was not detected and prosecuted sooner," the judge said.

Bottger allowed Mrs. Randazzo, 38, to go free on $80,000 bond pending her appeal.

On the 1 1/2 hour videotape, Mrs. Randazzo's husband, James, is seen lying naked next to his wife and the teen-age boy as they have sex. He called out direction, made requests of them and fondled himself.

The Randazzos were leaders of a group called the Spiral of Friends, a Christianity- based cult whose five or six dozen members believed that James
Randazzo had reached the "highest level of spirituality since Jesus Christ," according to testimony.

The Mesa County probation office had recommended a sentence of 90 days in jail, followed by probation, for Mrs. Randazzo, who had faced up to 66 years in prison.

Bottger said he couldn't agree because Mrs. Randazzo's conduct had not constituted an isolated incident and because she had not expressed remorse or acknowledged that what she did was wrong.

He sentenced her to two consecutive terms of four years each. Under state law, she will probably serve four years.

Her 50-year old husband, James, was conviced of 10 charges and also was to be sentenced Friday. However, his attorney was unable to be present, and his sentencing was rescheduled for Jan. 26. He faces up to 130 years in prison.

Mrs. Randazzo's attorney, Robert Flynn, said he would base his appeal on the admissability of the videotape and the court's refusal to allow her to use a "choice of evil" defense.

Mrs. Randazzo had contended that she engaged in sex with the boy in the videotape because he was depressed and needed to have his self-esteeem boosted.

Bottger, however, said her case "is not a case of religion ... or of therapy, or kindness or affection or love."

Fugitive religious leader nabbed

Source: Pueblo Chieftain
Date: October 29, 1992
Headline: Fugitive religious leader nabbed

Fugitive religious leader James Randazzo, convicted in 1989 of sex crimes, had skipped the country in 1990 & was nabbed in Hungary after a manhunt. He will now be sentenced on 10 counts of sexual exploitation of children & drug use. Randazzo founded Spiral of Friends Church in Molina.

Cult leader gets 16 years

Source: Rocky Mountain News
Date: January 30, 1993
Headline: Cult leader gets 16 years

Fugitive religious leader James Randazzo, convicted in 1989 of sexual exploitation of children, was sentenced to 16 years in prison. Founder of Spiral of Friends cult, he videotaped sex sessions with teenaged children during "therapy". His wife Colleen is serving an 8-year prison term. Randazzo had skipped the country, but was nabbed last fall in Hungary.

Ex-cult leader loses appeal in sex crimes

Source: Rocky Mountain News
Date: June 24, 1994, Friday
Byline: Associated Press
Headline: Ex-cult leader loses appeal in sex crimes

A former cult leader convicted of having sex with children of cult followers lost his bid Thursday to have the Colorado Court of Appeals overturn the jury findings.

James Vincent Randazzo is serving a 16-year sentence for the crimes and had a 1 1/2 year prison term added to that sentence after pleading guilty to skipping bond.

Randazzo, 54, had claimed that the trial court erred in denying his motion to sever the counts and grant separate trials on each.

He was convicted on 10 counts involving five instances of sexual misconduct with four children. Videotapes of some acts were introduced as evidence at his trial in Denver.

Randazzo and his then-wife Colleen were leaders of the Spiral of Friends cult with headquarters near Grand Junction.

The case was moved to Denver because of news coverage in Mesa County.

Randazzo also unsuccessfully claimed in his appeal that the trial court erred in admitting the videotape and certain testimony as similar transaction evidence.

He also failed in his allegation that certain acts of sexual conduct were necessary to avoid imminent injury to one of the children.

Jim and Carolyn Kuziak, New American Wing

New American Wing

The Numbers Game in The New American Wing By Jim McCabe 


I originally sent the following observations in private mail to a friend of mine, who later asked me to publish them on the web. This exchange took place relatively soon after leaving, and I was still using the Fourth Way lingo to describe events. Now, much later, I am a bit embarrassed by this and may revise the information to reflect my current perspective. 

For a much more comprehensive examination of this group, see NAW Aware . 


I was in a group called "The New American Wing" (NAW), a spinoff of James Randazzo's "Spiral of Friends" (SOF), which in turn came from "The Fellowship of Friends" (FOF). 

The NAW teachers (a married couple, Jim and Carolyn Kuziak, aka "J&C;") had the final word on who was "a five", who had awakened. I knew two women who told me they "didn't realize they had awakened" until a couple days later when the teachers told them so. This was an important clue that something was not quite right, because Man #5 is supposed to be objective in relation to himself. Also in my own personal experiences of non ordinary degrees of consciousness, it was obvious to me that my state had changed. These two women had actually believed they had awakened because the teachers told them so. 

A few days after a friend of mine supposedly awakened, I asked him about what had happened. He didn't say much except "it changes your life", and "the teachers say I am a five when I am self-remembering." 

There was little doubt who the fives were, because during meetings the teachers would occasionally ask to the audience, "who here has awakened?" (As though they forgot, as though they didn't know us each quite well.) Hands would rise into the air, like kids in a classroom. It was a public performance, resulting in a feeling of superiority in those who raised their hands, and a feeling of self-loathing in those who didn't. On one occasion, a student raised her hand and the teachers scolded her, "you haven't awakened, you've had experiences but you haven't awakened." 

The NAW has two main "centers" -- one in Ann Arbor and one in Lexington KY, overall about 25-40 students combined. Of these, I can recall eleven who claimed to be Men #5. Generally, these were the older students who had dedicated their lives to the school and had bought-in 100% to the game. People usually awakened during one of the major ceremonies we had during the year (Christmas, Easter, July 4, Thanksgiving). It also usually occurred during "obligatories" -- the ritual movements. 

These students had special privileges after their conversion experience. They could attend special private meetings, held only for those who had awakened. They were also given special exercises. At the time I left, I was just starting to be included in these "older student" activities, even though I had not awakened. They were giving me exercises that did not seem to be practical for me -- imagining myself the size of the earth, imagining energy and directing it through my body, etc. There was a thrill in receiving these new exercises, because it gave me the illusion of being an advanced student, of being part of the inner circle, etc. 

Fives also had a more prominent role during ceremonies and obligatories. They were also allowed to ask less practical questions at meetings -- they could ask theoretical questions regarding higher energies, the ray of creation, symbols, etc., and the teachers would entertain those questions now. This was not an explicit privilege, but was a sort of unwritten understanding, as though now the students had enough being for these questions to be considered "practical". 

Strangely, once someone awakened, they were allowed to take much greater care of their instinctive functions. The teachers would not complain if an older student dropped out of some "work octave" because of physical discomfort. If a non-awakened student tried this, the older students and teachers would come down hard on them. "Do not let the instinctive function eat your work", "learn how to dominate those queen-of-clubs 'I's", "no half efforts", "once you decide to do something, do it whole hog and twice the postage", etc. But awakened students were allowed much more sleep, more breaks, less strenuous work, more desk jobs. The rationale seemed to be, "in a higher state, you are much more sensitive to the needs of the instinctive function." Or, "if you don't take care of your machine, it will become negative and eat you when in a higher state." The teachers exemplified this behavior. They received massages and sexual favors from the innermost core of students, took considerable time each day in a hot tub, and spent hours each night laying in a bed with about 15 pillows watching a $3000 wide-screen TV. One particular student, the teachers' pet, cooked their meals each night with utmost care: only the best organic foods, making handmade ice-cream, all sorts of special dietary requirements, etc. While preparing food for them, we were told that if we were in a negative state while cooking, they could tell from the food itself, as though our negativity had corrupted the food. 

But being considered a Man #5 was not all positive... Awakened students were given additional duties and responsibilities, such as being sent out to start centers in new cities. They were also treated more harshly by the teachers, because they had "verified that this was a C influence school" and were now supposed to devote their entire lives to it. The teachers claimed to control the higher states in the fives, "when you awaken you swim in our higher being bodies." They also used this as a threat, "I've got your nickel ... once you've awakened, you belong to me -- do you understand me?" 

Outwardly, there were various signs that would indicate one of these students were supposedly in a higher state. Often they would shed tears, sometimes tears of horror and sometimes tears of joy. The state was usually onset by heavy controlled breathing on the part of the student -- such as during obligatories, or during a meeting if a student wanted to be seen making a "super-effort". They often had a far-away look in their eyes, as though they were not interested in the trivial events taking place around them. 

They usually would not look directly in your eyes, and others generally didn't "photograph their instinctive functions" (stare at them) either. If I looked them in the eyes, sometimes I felt waves of shame arise within me, fearing they could see into my horrible feature-ridden soul. This kind of self-hatred was glorified in various subtle ways throughout the school. A common expression was, "you cannot look in the face of something higher" (without becoming extremely identified). This grand suggestion actually encouraged us to become more identified in these situations. 

Sometimes they would experience brief twitches, as though bolts of energy were shooting through their system. One student kept experiencing these jolts frequently a few days after he had "awakened", until the teachers scolded him during obligatories, "you can't go there every time, now it is time to get serious." 

The fives quickly became more self-confident, especially around non-awakened students. I can remember how quickly one particular student changed after going through this experience -- within a couple weeks he changed from being a true wuss into an assertive person able to take what he felt he deserved. (In many ways it was an act and after a few months he gradually returned closer to his original state.) This new self-confidence came from a renewed certainty about their faith, and also seemed to justify their increased outbursts of negativity towards others. In other words, they were now peers with the other awakened students, and, lacking that fear to keep them on-guard, they were more likely to try to control situations with negative emotions. Their new strength, self-confidence, and perceived power gave them a kind of charisma. 

The teachers probably liked the idea of having more awakened students too. They validated their credentials, "proof that this school works". Awakened students were fully crystallized in their devotion to the school -- it seemed that these were the students who would do ANYTHING for the teachers (get a divorce, move to a new town, make large payments, sexual favors, hold multiple jobs, etc...) It justified giving these core devotees extra privileges and extra duties. It maintained the hierarchical power system and justified it with a spiritual basis. It gave these students a feeling of increased being. 

Older students also took over many of the public responsibilities previously performed by the teachers. By allowing them to hide in their bedroom, with all contact fully controlled and orchestrated, the teachers were able to generate a kind of mystique. In their absence, we had less chance to 'catch them in the act', less opportunity to discover if the teachers were truly higher beings. When we finally did interact with them, it was so formalized and so fear-laden that we were easy prey. And with mere fives running most of the show, any faults could be blamed on them, thus protecting the teachers' facade of perfection. And although fives were supposedly conscious, they were not fully objective to the external world, so their eventual mechanical flubs and failures could still be forgiven without breaking our belief in the actual existence of something higher. 

Jim and Carolyn Kuziak, New American Wing

Mervyn Brady, Academy Inner Circle
I was invited to Texas (using someone's free air miles) for about a 5-day weekend to meet the "teacher" of this low key group that had been in existence for maybe about 10 years! It is similar in ONE way to the Fourth Way group on line (called "Fourth Way Cafe" on the disinfo site).

I'm not looking for a school personally; I received a free trip, out of patterns, saw a couple of old friends, and fed curiosity i's. ;-)

The name of the group, apparently, is the name of an email list they HAD at the time: AcademyInnerCircle, mostly referred to as "the Academy."

After ten years, there now are only about 30+ members in several countries, mostly held together by communicating via email; teacher visits the "centers" (sound familiar?) and student hype about the fellow is that he is a "Man No. 6" -- and my friend who brought me there to check it out had joined a few months before, due to an "experience" he had with this "new" guy on the horizon.

His experience was that the teacher "zaps" people with his energy, and "throws them into higher centers." I know, I know. I wanted to see THAT.

My friend told me he sensed the teacher doing this at the meeting I attended, and I did not. We spoke about this later, and my friend told me he tried it once himself, standing next to a friend at the beach, and asked the friend later, "Did you feel that?" and the guy said, "Yeah, what was that?"

(My friend and I came to the approach that neither of us had verified what this was -- it could be from the instinctive center. As for me, my instinctive center isn't developed much - it likes to sit, lie down, and eat! My emotional center - the "instrument of cognition" - detects a lot of information about people when meeting in person, and my friend told me that the fellow had done a "zap" of energy during our meeting. Well, he looked into my eyes a few times, and I wasn't picking up anything unusual, and that's no verification of anything, either. )

So, I offered to join to help these folks with their email list, hosted by, as long as I did not have to pay the $150/mo. 'teaching payment.' Well, they needed more help than money, I guess, so allowed this. This was the first weekend in May 1999.

Gosh, folks had a LOT of trouble signing up for the email list. They didn't read instructions at the site for it, and rather would send "whining" kinds of messages for help. I can understand this; many were new to internet stuff. Still their attention was rather lacking, and then I noticed the kinds of messages sent to the "school" list.

They also published what I call "ditties" of poetry, claiming they were "made so emotional" from them, they wanted to share them. They had no clue these were mechanical emotions. This is just one example, where in ten years, the Work understanding seemed a bit sketchy, at best.

[Also, turns out that Mervyn Brady (teacher's name) was in FOF for 12 years! (He told me to NOT put any FOF information on his group list.) Hmmm.]

Most msgs were flowery poetry, either made up by students or quoted from "conscious beings" - several people used the number "44" in their email addresses, and one guy used Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, and Rodney Colin" as ID names on email. Said he did it for "shocks." (Thanks. He was a self-appointed shocker.)

So this friend of mine and I devised a new list for "fourth way talk" as there was none on the main list. We wrote about using Work language, for better understanding, etc. About 8 people subscribed to that list (out of 37 at the time).

Controversy increased, and at long last Mervyn wrote HIS flame about the whole idea. It was a surprise because it was a message that read like a child's tantrum. He basically said what RB said to Harold - "This is NOT a G & O school...." etc.

Longer story short: My friend had set up the group list, and in order to get off it, he had to delete it! Someone else had to restart it, and all their archives were lost (no great loss).

They won't be writing to me to find out how to manage the list. haha I unsubbed from the list just before it was deleted.

A fairly hateful message was received from Mervyn, severing all contact, telling everyone in group to sever contact, and that nobody was to read anything sent to them from outside the group -- delete message upon seeing who it iss from, etc. Mmmm.

It's not a surprise. My friend told me Mervyn has a large collection of FOF Journals from which he plagiarizes his "innermost thoughts" for his group. One new student (formerly with FOF), just joined a few days ago, wrote to my friend saying some messages he recognized right out of FOF Journals!

The teacher claims to be a venusian type, and this is one reason he has a "laid back approach" (my friend and I think it's tramp).

He also doesn't want "crystallized learning" brought into his teaching (G&O; stuff). Work language is not necessary, etc. He also said that because G&O; are dead, the "system" is dead!

Three people had conferred before asking the teacher questions. One of the people sent our questions and comments directly to Mervyn privately without telling us. ACK! We were conferring and would be sending them to him, so we don't know what kind of "spin" the guy put on them. Sure tore open a hornet's nest!

The teacher referred to this as "possible crime" in his PUBLIC message tantrum sent to the whole group (discrediting us began quickly).

He also listed all his members and reminded each one how they had "verified his higher centers" (by sensing the "zap" energy he "sent" them). So they *believe* they have verified his higher centers. Gzdz.

Then he must have realized he would lose his fancy website, and started schmoozing my friend again - flattering him (You are so powerful) and that the teacher would need to "monnitor" someone like him, etc. and wanted him to come back! No way.

That about sizes it up. You may not have any questions; it is a familiar scenrio. If you do, of course, ask away.

Tell me if you want to use this information anywhere, okay? (before you run with it. ) I have some copies of Mervyn's messages and other stuff.

Now that you have the brief notes, you may wish to see my "goodbye letter" to Mervyn where I "let him have it." ;-) If so, let me know and I'll send you a copy. ;-D

Hi ho, Gregory,

Pardon my delay in sending stuff.

"Grog W. Goldwing (not his real name)TM" wrote:

> > I wish I had a nickel for every crank asshole who developed > into a "man number six" out of the Fellowship of Friends, > I'd buy a new car.

hahahahah! Amen!

> People see how serious Burton takes himself and believe > that being "intentionally" self-absorbed will make them > conscious. Unfortunately new people believe all this crap.

Yes, it is indeed unfortunate. And worse.

> Please send me the photograph you leveled at this nut > by way of departure. I won't make anything public > you do not intentionally indicate to make public. > If you want me to I will set up a little warning > site about this nut. Zap him a little.

Ah, now I like that idea. His name is Mervyn Brady, an Irishman, and lives in England. He was in FOF for 12 years (I'll find the specifics of that info for you). He must be about 40-ish. I'll send you a picture of him, too! (I did snatch a few things off the website before it was demolished.)

Oh, and I can send you the distinctive background from his old web site. hahaha! (I'm envisioning the page already. haha Maybe it's not your style, though.) haha

His "school" is called Academy Inner Circle, and payments are $150/month per person. He has about 30 +/- students - a few in canada, a few in USA (Austin, Texas for one; Los Angeles, CA for another; don't know others).


Hindsight is so good. Gadz, this isn't as "hot" as I thought it was when I wrote it. haha

Here's what I sent him:

Subject: Good-bye Mervyn, and Be Well Date: Tue, 20 Jul 1999 20:20:49 -0700 From: XXX Organization: To: Mervyn Brady <>, Mervyn Brady <>

Hello, Mervyn,

[Please read my remarks aloud to yourself, and use an even tone of voice when you do. You will "hear" the even tone, and will hear the truth of my writing.]

You probably don't remember my telling you that I do not have problems with your authority, and would back you up or "cover your flank" as you put it that one time you wrote to me personally. My aim in regard to you began by wanting the role of being a supportive student and helpful to your group.

I also mentioned to you, maybe you remember, that I am a "good recruiter." Within two months, I brought two new members to your circle. (Andrew and Jackeline)

[Oh, and I've let them know what's going on, too./sw] (this extra remarks or others if any were not in msg)

I was not going to write more to you about the recent "situation" that seemed to blow out of proportions almost immediately. I decided I will write about it today.

You may erase this before even reading it, and that is your choice. My conscience is clear.

I was not going to encourage members to question you in any way, until I saw your immediate negative retort as your "answer" to just a few questions from Rob and me which did not require your response to be made public (when our questions were not made public also).

You showed immediate resentment and negativity, which is unbecoming in a man of your claimed stature, and your rejection of any calm discussion was unreasonable.

Your large message to everyone that included phrases about "crime," "crystallized learning," or remarks that your school is NOT a "G & O" school, was not expected from you -- it was a childish temper tantrum.

No one was attacking you; mere suggestions were offered, and it looked (to me) that you went into a panic! Then I realized you must have become identified and did not remember that I told you I would HELP you and your group.

(I was NOT trying to do a "take over" - FAR from it. I don't want that kind of responsibility for other people! I wanted to be merely a supportive student, and helper. You could have discussed this with me in Texas, and you chose not to.)

In one of your messages, you IMPLIED that maybe you wrote the tirade as a PHOTOGRAPH for Rob (and me). How dare you fly off the handle like that, and discredit publicly our legitimate questions and sincere suggestions for you to think about, then claim your intent was to "photograph" us! That is absurd.

Your "photograph" was completely wrong.

You were not described to me as a "benign dictator" or that new students to your group have to "give up their so-called 'will'" at the door, sit down and shut up. Your open message effectively "keeps in line" your students so they dare not ask anything!

None of us can verify the Academy is a "real school" without questions, and it is not verified because you SAY it is.

However, I saw no reason why the issues that were brought up could not be discussed in a civil manner with the aim for conciliation and harmony. We did not start the negativity with you. You started it.

That our private correspondence was sent to you by one of your regular students showed his lack of understanding of what was actually occurring. We (Rob and I) don't know what kind of "spin" he put on those messages to fuel the fire of your identification.

Explanations in answer to questions is the norm, and you sent justifications and near second-hand testimonials listing the members who have "verified" your higher centers (perhaps by virtue of your "sending" energy to them to "bring them to self remembering," or whatever you call your power surge).
Sensing energy coming from you does not verify YOUR higher centers for people who sense that. You are *telling* your students they have verified your higher centers! They believe you, unfortunately.

Your comment about Rob "sobbing" at such an experience was disingenuous or an error on your part. He was not sobbing because of the incident -- he was sobbing because he included his experience with everything else that had happened and believed he had found a "real Fourth Way school." Knowing how rare this is, he was overwhelmed emotionally.

He told me this in a state of shock that you would publicly vilify him the way you did. I considered your response to be mean spirited and duplicitous.

Anything I cannot verify for myself is put on a "mental shelf" somewhere for later. I never consider opinions or testimonials from others to be legitimate verification, because that would not be done by me personally. I know what goes on inside ME; I do not know what goes on inside YOU, or anyone else.

If you can be honest with yourself, you don't know either.

Most of your students believe that they have "verified" your higher centers -- because you told them they did. I would not believe it if you told me that.

The "work" you learned from Robert Burton is not the Fourth Way Work. That you use old FOF Journals to inspire your writings is unfortunate. (Even one of your new ex-FOF students recognized the Journals when looking at the list archives and seeing your messages.)

Rob was one of your most sincere and hard working students. He made tremendous efforts (many hours) in your behalf on that website of your design and according to your wishes, and for a long time separated from his frustration at not being able to complete the site, primarily due to your lack of attention to needed details and not your not replying to his emails.

When you are dealing with former FOF members who do join up with you, they will feel quite at home with "King of Hearts" dinners, numbers 44, conscious beings sending emails, and not questioning what they do not understand because it probably is something designed to "test" them, plus "the lower cannot see the higher" and all that kind of subjective interpretation.

I was not aware of your attitude towards G&O; and "the system" when we met in Texas. It did not occur to me to ask you about it at the time as from what I had heard at that time was the group was a "Fourth Way" school.

My suggestion to you is that you put that information up front, especially to people who DO want the Work language, and who DO respect "the system" -- because it works for them.

It is very legitimate that new students should ask any questions they have. Questions are not "attacks" - rather the search for truth. If truthful replies can be given, questions are not a threat of any kind.

The Fourth Way is not a "dead system" Mr. Brady, although it may be that for you. I was surprised that you felt a "work language" is not necessary for understanding. Without it, everything anyone writes, including you, is ambiguous and then must be interpreted by everyone's individual subjectivity. That is the "Tower of Babel."

How you can think that using any language students choose brings mutual understanding among them is a mystery to me. Everyone is subjective; it does not work that way, Mervyn, unless you want to keep them in that naive condition.

"The Way of Heaven is to benefit others and not to injure. The Way of the sage is to act but not to compete." Lao-tzu [c. 604 - c.531 B.C.]

I did enjoy meeting you, Mervyn, and truly expected we would have a lasting association. My disappointment is brief, as I don't hold onto such things. I wish you well.

[Here I was disingenuous myself. Gadz. /sw (Stella Wirk)]

I have now "officially" left your group, and am not in contact with any of your current members.

[well, more or less 'sincerely' haha]

I'll send you also a copy of his blasting message - subject "Lukewarm..." heh heh


Delivered-To: mailing list
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Subject: [academyinnercircle] Lukewarm
X-Mozilla-Status2: 00000000

From: mervyn brady <>

To All my Students,

It is 1.43 am here in Ramsgate.

I am filled with a great sadness and felt the need to communicate with you ALL.

I have heard a lot lately about Gurdjieff and Ouspensky.

May I remind you all I am no Stranger to their work and their systems.

I value their work greatly and will always be grateful for their legacy.

For me that was 32 years ago when homeless and crashing in a friend,s house, I read Ouspensky,s discription of "Self Remembering"
I cried and jumped for joy at the same time. I KNEW this was the piece of the jigsaw that was missing.The rest was interesting and certainly helped to understand the Laws that Stopped us from doing it.

I enjoyed the Stories of Gurdjieff and how he "Kicked Ass". I dreamed of what it would have been like there with him . I was honest enough with myself to know I probably would not have lasted one day around him.

Over the years many Students would get glassy eyed and tell me I should be more like Gurdjieff.

Well I am Not.

Not even close on the Mechanics scale.

I would never be able to match such a man in any way, but I also could never match my wife (Martial) in any way either. However there was one way I possibily could, and that was in Self Remembering.

When my Higher Centers emerged I was like a man stranded in a strange land. I did not have an Organisation to bale me out. I had to start right at the bottom.

To go looking for Gems where I could. In respect to my former Teacher Robert Burton (Although in 12 yrs I only saw him twice for brief moments),I did not Bookmark Or take any of his Students. did not blaspheme him and had a gratitude that ran deep.

I did not ask him to be my friend, as he made it quite clear what his position was and I respected that. I left my ex wife of 8 years there behind me.

I felt the real test of one's higher Centers was if they could lift another person into theirs.

Each one of you with the exception of Jackine and Andrew have verified that they exist.

I saw Robert Finn racked with sobbing in the Hilton Hotel, and comforted by our little Solar Sam. I saw his happiness as his wife experienced not only Self Remembering but my Spiritual Son Sullins brought her into a Higher State

I saw Sarah Stuart soar and watched her Husband Sullins Higher Centers being born.

I saw Alberto and Barbara experiencing the "Magic"

I saw Ken and watch him emerging.

I have looked into Sue Roberts Soul and she has seen and touched mine. I saw Jason and AK coming to my car in LA outside Sullins and Sarah,s apartment and asking me who they saw with their own eyes me changing into. I saw Ak that first morning in the restaurant as her Soul Lept.

I saw That most gentle of gentlemen John Manning soar in ectasy and am so proud of his gentle and loving emergence.

Kerin changing from a young girl to a Lady and handling her life with pride. The sweetness of her inner world a pleasure to behold. John Regan in New York, So many hero,s out there, all struggling with there weakness and plays.

Harris,Wise Rene and Miriam. Karen, Irena and Daniel all have experienced Higher States.

Olly, Sabine Phil, Sam, Jane Ian John Michael all have verified that something occured and is occuring. To those I have not mentioned, it is only space that does not permit it.

A Student asked me on the phone what do I want from him and other Students?

I want nothing only that you keep growing.

You are my Guest and have my goodwill.

I have no agenda, other than to pursue wisdom, and when attained to use it to pursue more.

My oldest Student Marie and her Husband Ji out there on the Canadian frontiers. Ask them what they have verified and what keeps them in the work? I have no need to EVER justify myself to any Human again. The deed is done, you all have had your signs. Go in Peace or stay

"But if you are lukewarm, I will spew thee out of my mouth" Jesus


--------------------------- ONElist Spoonsor ----------------------------

To speak the truth is the most difficult thing in the world; one must study a great deal and for a long time in order to be able to speak the truth. The wish alone is not enough. To speak the truth one must know what the truth is and what a lie is, and first of all in oneself. Gurdjieff


and another - letter to former FOF person who joined Mervyn's group after I told him about it. Ack! At least he is noticing something, and think he will quit after his $150 is used up. (monthly "tithe")

This one, keep A's name private, and if quoted, no name or xxxx@...blahblah.

My comments are okay to use, openly, if you wish; they are my opinions. ;-)

(Try to not get me in trouble, of course. hahah can't afford any more lawsuits!)

Attached Message

Dear A,

A wrote: > > Dear S, > > I will consider all communication on this topic private - of > course, as I have declared on numerous occasions, I trust you.

Thank you, ol' friend. I appreciate your trust.

> What is going on? I noticed that the archived material on > the academy list was primarily from Renaissance Journals; > much of it being Burton's own words....

You are correct, that is what they WERE. Mervyn was in FOF for 12 years and collected and saved his journals. He quotes them prolifically, without any reference to them, as if they are his own words. When I joined the group in Texas while visiting Robert Finn, Mervyn told me to keep FOF iformation OFF the list. I supposed only because it is such negative information; I did not know at that time he was using journals to plagerize from them!

His reaction on the list to a few questions openly asked of him resorted in a retort from him that could best be described as a childish tantrum. He also accused Robert Finn and "his ilk" of crime!

I wrote a letter to the list addressing some of Mervyn's comments, mentioning that 3 people conferring to ask the teacher some questions about serious concerns cannot be considered a 'crime wave.'

As there has been little posting to the list, I'm guessing a lot of emails are going back and forth NOT on the list, to keep his people "in line."

Most of them have passed from believing him to worshipping him. Sound familiar? Same buffers, too, when challenged about one of Mervyn's statements. Some also believe that if he gives no response, it is a "photograph" for them!

Also, his discrediting Robert F. and I openly on the list didn't set well for a man claiming to be #6 (and we've heard that before, too).

The group is an imitation of FOF, Andrew, in many ways, and the members have no idea because they aren't given any information, and by now would probably not even look at my FOF website report (which is on a new page now; ok to give out info: ).

The teacher does not teach. He does not want to use "the system" or work language! I didn't know these things until I started reading the list where several people use the names of "conscious beings" as their email address. They like to "shock" one another.

Asking Mervyn about some of these things he agreed with me and thanked me for "watching his ass." Hmmm. He didn't tell the group to stop using conscious beings emails, or other things he agreed with me about on in private mail.

A lot of the members have little or no understanding of Work ideas, as the group (it turns out) is getting Burton's version of it, with the exception that Rob and I think Mervyn is not playing around with boys.

Mervyn goes to meetings and does not teach. He muses. Nobody asks any significant work questions.

Before you joined list, and controvrsey began, people were publishing poetry or quoting something and saying "how emotional" they were made by the item. They don't know the difference between the parts of centers and are not observing the mechanical parts being evoked. Apparently they do use the deck of cards labels, yet don't seem to know what they mean.

(The AcademyInnerCircle list was deleted today. Maybe you saw Rob Finn's message about it. He is leaving the group, and does not want to handle the list for them, and as he created the list, he's the "owner" so has to delete it to get off it. (I unsubscribed earlier, yesterday).

> I did not feel that I should bring it up to the local LA > people, and I had not had time yet to inquire "en forum", > though, perhaps since fear is my chief feature, I may have > put it off indefinitely - that seems the strongest possibility. > Still, I would like to know what is going on?

I can understand how you feel. Everybody is like that - in the group they all support each other's buffers. If you had brought it up to the folks in LA, they probably wouldn't know what you are talking about, and would disbelieve that Mervyn would "do such a thing." As they are not privy to informtion about FOF, they also would not believe it.

> Does this mean that Mervyn is a fake?...

It does for me. I'm sorry you may not be able to get your money back; you could try, of course. The teacher admits to having a tramp feature, though doesn't talk about it. Rather he describes himself as "laid back" and "easy going" venusian. Personally, methinks venus-merc. He lies too much, and venusians want to help people, not use them.

> Is this a new moon event?...

I don't think so. Moonbeams may help it along.

> Are we all being passed through a large meat grinder? If so, > to what purpose?

hahaha, to keep people in the group. Mervyn learned from Burton, it's clear.

> I appreciate any light you can throw on the darkness I feel today.

Well, I hope I didn't throw so much light that it set a fire.

If you have any other questions, go ahead and ask them of me; I'll fill in blanks. We won't be discussing the group on the fourthway list - as that is for Work ideas and such. There were 12 people subscribed, and they all unsubbed in one day (all Academy members, maybe were told to do it).

I have more people I can get on this new 4thway list.

Hang in there with me, A. Thanks much.