Introduction


Presented in reverse chronology, this history stretches from the present back to the Fellowship's 1970 founding, and beyond.
(See "Blog Archive" in the sidebar below.) It draws from many sources, including The Fellowship of Friends - Living Presence Discussion, the Internet Archive, the former Fellowship of Friends wiki project, cult education and awareness sites, news archives, and from the editor's own 13-year experience in the Fellowship.

The portrait that emerges stands in stark contrast to sanitized versions presented on the Fellowship's array of
alluring websites, and on derivative sites created by Burton's now-estranged
disciple, Asaf Braverman.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

The "Research Octave" and The Esoteric Keys

[ed. - The term "octave" may be loosely taken to mean a project. We'll begin this post with some humor:]


"Deep Throat" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, August 8, 2007:
Keys to a Dutch manuscript, dating from 1430. Click to see the image here:
http://img523.imageshack.us/img523/6320/elisha2kt0.jpg
The manuscript shows our Beloved Teacher at ‘work’ as he contemplates the enormity of the Holy Rod (at least 7’ 3”) that will finally satisfy his satyriatic impulses. The golden aura around the Rod signifies his imagination that C-Influence has sanctified his lust. Appropriately, the bedchamber (Galleria) is decorated with phalluses of various shapes and sizes, denoting his central identifications (note one Long Be, one Short Be, and One Medium Be that is ‘just right’).

The figure standing by the bed represents an ‘older student’, perhaps Ni_k Spa_ldi_g or some other member of the ‘inner circle’. The crown shows he views himself as an important fish in a very small pond. While the Beloved Teacher amuses himself in his narcissistic fantasy, this ‘king’ takes it upon himself to shoot his arrow of delusion (transmission of illusory authority) at a student trying to escape the Fellowship of Friends (figure at upper left trying to tiptoe out of the picture towards the dawn of understanding with his spear of verification intact).
The four crosses around Beloved Teacher’s head represent the four Big Original Whoppers (lying about his being, lying about his teaching, lying about his celibacy and lying about his power to foresee the future) that he told at the founding ‘do’ of the Fellowship. They are also represented by the four stones outside the window, which have been tripping up his followers ever since.

These lies (seemingly innocuous, at the time) told by the Sleeping Teacher have now grown to maturity, shown by the four trees. Each tree represents an important characteristic of the Fellowship: using language from a tradition of awakening to send followers to deeper sleep, engendering a false sense of being specially chosen by C-Influence, fostering spiritual materialism, and voluntary enslavement to a self–appointed intermediary, or priest.

"Purchasing Awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, October 27, 2007:
This is how this pseudo-teaching is fabricated: random image hunt plus insane interpretations…

You can do it too! Just try to see the keys around you. Make sure you count things – this is the most important – the numbers! Use a calculator if you have to.

Guidelines from Propylaia [official Fellowship member website] for “researchers”: 
Collecting Images for the School

[ed. - Purchasing Awakening's remarks are in parentheses.]
Students are encouraged to research school sources, particularly those located close to their center, in literature, museums, churches and other places where schools may have left traces.
Following are some guidelines:

· Make your own photographs of images and architecture, if the situation allows it.

· You can send in images from the Internet, but please include the URL where you found it so we can keep copyright information.

· For any image, send a note describing your perception of the keys in it.

· In any image, look for the keys. Look for the same simple ideas: the nine of hearts, the sequence, the steward, the lower self, the higher centers. Robert said ‘don’t look for different answers’… (Yes, look for hands, feet, stars, poops, Jesus, goats, giraffes, crocodiles, toes, vases, deer, pubic hair, arrows, devil, breasts, circles, triangles, dots, lines, squares, blue color, red color, yellow color – well, pretty much anything will do. Just go and take pictures will you, and then we’ll key them for you.)
· Don’t hesitate to count things in images – there are many numbers that now have significance for us. (That’s where the calculator comes in handy)

· If what you find in an image is too complicated, let it go for now. The keys are simple, as if designed for children. (Well, actually this is precisely designed for brainwashed cult members since children will not go for it.)

· The images are not only for the school, but for those who find them – it is a great opportunity to make the keys our own. (Yes make your own keys! Or make something up and then key it. Use your creativity and Photoshop!)

· Robert very much enjoys seeing the images that students send and sees most of the images that are submitted. (And the rest of them are keyed by Dorian and Mihai, but it is equally valid, besides – who cares. Robert very much enjoys images of poops, genitals, toes, feet and various sexual acts so please look for those images during your search. Lots of such images -copyright free by the way! – can be found on youporn dot com)

· Please send in the images you find to xxxx@xxx
Now, doesn’t it just makes you want to follow this fresh home-made “teaching”?

I wonder how many idiots are actually reaching for their cameras in response to these “guidelines”…

Laugh,

PA

"Confused" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, April 13, 2007:
I would like to share with you something which made me especially confused tonight.

I found on my shelf “Thoughts From The Teacher of September 17, 2006″. This was the last meeting at the Theatron during the Journey Forth by Day. People paid unbelievable amounts of money to come from all over the world to these events…

If anybody can find any useful meaning in it, please help me in my confusion!

I will only share few quotations and RB interpretations…
“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.” {James 4:8}

God is the divinity within us, the state we are blessed to be in now. How do we draw near this state when it is absent? With the sequence. This evening’s event is composed of the most beautiful thoughts from the schools that have preceded us – some of the most beautiful arias.

“We attain freedom from sin in six steps” {The Philokalia, Ilias the Presbyter}

Here, we clearly see “sin” as sleep. We obtain freedom from sleep in six steps with the precious sequence – the pyramid of Saqqara. The pyramid of Saqqara is the oldest existing example of architecture for man.

What a “do” it is!

“Practice the dharma, since it is your best companion.” {Padmasanbhava}

To “practice” means to engage presence with the sequence. The sequence is a friend of this state we are in – the “friend of Allah.”

“Ten thousand would be of little use in this little gate”. {The Arabian Nights}

Because they are crooked, because they are unrelated to your sequence. Hafiz called the ten thousands “I’s unrelated to your sequence “ten thousand idiots”, because they actually imagine they are the state we are in now: presence – too beautiful, too definite for words.
How do you feel? Are you still here? Are you hypnotised yet? Present? Does it make any sence to you? Do you see any thread of manipulation?

"inner piece" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, April 17th, 2007:

So, the question doesn’t seem to come up – what is the teaching today in the FoF and who is doing it (whatever it is).

For those of you Bloggers just arriving and catching up, the NEW form and teaching of the newly morphed FOF looks something like this:
  • Abandoned 4th way ideas to be a replaced by a kind of mind incantation called the sequence, a series of 6 thoughts eg: be, hold , move, back, be, hold. You are supposed to do this the minute you are even remotely in the moment, which nicely takes you right out of the moment, because you just entered your head to incant the sequence. At the end of this you take 4 breaths and start again.( I don’t know if the breaths are more of a gasp or just normal breathing- which if you didn’t breath, you would be gasping for air anyway.)
  • All kinds of symbols from Egyptian times, going back to Prehistoric with a sprinkling of more current 5-11th century visual art interpreted by Robert. These interpretations are greatly (if not entirely) worked out by about 100 people who are researching art books, history, writing etc to see if anything looks interesting and they can contribute to the great things that are being revealed. Really important and interesting stuff is brought to light like: two prehistoric cult figurines , one with a long penis and one with short penis mean Long Be and Short Be in the sequence, or a cave painting depicting a mammoth having a good dump, showing 6 poo droppings (probably 3-4 other poo droppings are illegible due to time eradicating them) means a ‘weak sequence’ (meaning the mammoth did not incant the sequence with any real feeling).
  • Asaf, a young attractive, sparkling , sweet, recently arrived (last 3 years) Israeli student with incredible RAM does a good deal of the teaching these days. He was nicely segued into the forefront by Robert.(I guess Roberts energy is giving out- after all it takes a lot of energy to keep working on his ‘night moves’).
  • Most students find the shift to Asaf just fine. After all if you are following a cult leader, one is a good as the next. As long as there is a leader who has some charisma . Asaf co-ordinates most of the ‘material’ coming in from the 100+ researchers and puts it into a format so at least it follows some general thought process. Conferring with Robert before every meeting/dinner etc they come up with the teaching for that day. Most of it is interpretations that go nowhere, mean nothing, and can’t even give you a state these days, unless you decide somewhere along the line that this has been given to you to separate from and to work with. The best you can get out of a meeting is either “some pissed off” or to trigger some positive peptides which will give you a mild buzz of ‘euphoric floating off’ much like some tortured prisoners experience when the pain gets beyond the bearable stag. Either way, you get a ‘state’.
  • Lunches, dinners, events on the property with other students are beautifully dressed events with wine and music. Conversations can’t go anywhere, because they are broken up every 4-8 minutes with some sweet, smiling believer announcing the ‘opportunity’ for another event that will only cost you $125 or if you want to sit with the main man at the table $250- 350. Asaf does most of the talking anyway at these events, but, hey, you might absorb some of those ‘higher energies’ from the main man by just sitting there and incanting the sequence.
  • Any reading, or checking out things for yourself are done in secret. You do not discuss any of what you are up to when you are not on the property with anyone unless it is one of your best friends (but then you never know for sure if they will turn you in or not). It is a bit like going down to SoHo for a good night on the town when the wife goes over to her sisters. You can keep doing whatever it is that feeds your spiritual yearning, but just don’t get caught- or there will be an instant divorce.
  • If you really start suffering in your confusion, you are encouraged to do some ‘third line work’ to help bridge your ‘interval’. This can take any form – from washing pots or dishes, serving RB his next dinner, fund raising for RB, cleaning the gardens around the Academy. Just keep busy- it will help you stop from looking inside or thinking about ‘what the hell is going on ?’.
  • If you leave the FoF, well, according to the main man, you are dammed for eternity and go to the end of the queue to feed the moon. And , oh, for those staying, do not talk to those who have left- you might catch a virus- and boy , then you never know what might happen to you.

"Traveler" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, June 6, 2007:
MYSTERY!

What is it about humans that causes us to go totally loopy when we hear someone cry “mystery”?

Why are half of the documentaries you’ve ever seen on various Discovery-type channels titled “The Secrets of Deep Sea” and “The Mysteries of Ancient India” and “Hidden Treasures of Japan”? Or “Finally, the secret of successful dieting revealed!” Why does J.K. Rowling write a children’s book about a secret school where special powers are taught to young wizards who are inherently different from the rest of the people on Earth (“muggles”) and makes 4 billion dollars? Why do people get so excited over “illuminati” and conspiracy theories, secret societies? Why does a film called “The Secret” (to be outdone by “The Secret behind the Secret”), claiming that ancient secret teachers were keepers of secret knowledge that has been hidden in order to be preserved, and it has traveled through centuries to finally reach you, and promises to give you control of the events of your life – you can get anything you desire if you only focus on thinking and feeling positive – why does that become an international best-seller and the hottest thing in contemporary “spirituality”? Why do people become devoted to a Robert Burton who claims to be the only one on Earth with a special connection to mysterious higher forces, which include ancient authorities who support him (according to himself), and reveals hidden knowledge that has been kept secret for 30,000 years and is only now understood correctly for the first time, by him and his disciples, and who promises you can achieve control of your lower self and thereby save yourself from extinction?

A common theme running through esotericism is a small exclusive group of illuminati, in possession of a secret knowledge that gives them a decisive advantage over the rest of the uninitiated masses. This knowledge must be carefully guarded from being revealed to the unworthy. It cannot be understood by everybody, and is not readily apparent to anybody. It requires difficult payment and prolonged efforts to be accessible and attained. The possession of this knowledge makes people powerful and elevated above others. They hold out the promise that you will finally understand what life’s all about, what’s going on with the universe, and then you will be safe/saved. Finally, you’ve gotten hold of this one thing that you had always needed, that had always been missing, so that now, NOW you will be able to live correctly at last!

Today it’s called the Sequence:

A group of invisible highly evolved beings called Influence C exclusively transmits ancient esoteric knowledge to Robert. The aim is to use the Sequence to become a conscious being, just like eminent people in the past, such as Lincoln, Plato, Shakespeare and Buddha. The Sequence has been around for 30.000 years but has been kept hidden and not available to people at large. It has always been kept by the select few. Now it is being revealed to us for the first time in history. Traditions have called it so many different things. But every tradition, every religion, every philosophy, every school of the past tells us the same thing – they all understood the Sequence. By using it, we achieve prolonged presence, which is the hidden meaning of life on Earth. You should make a habit of it, remember to use it every day, live it, but it should never be a chore. Choose your thoughts carefully. You must control your imagination and not allow any negative thoughts to enter, because that’s when you lose. Also, intellectual understanding is not enough – you must find ways to make this emotional, because only the right emotion carries enough power to engage presence. When you’re negative, don’t express that emotion, find reasons to not express it, adopt a positive attitude about the school, don’t allow any I’s unrelated to promoting presence. When you become intentional and on fire for what you want, your higher centers will ignite and you will enter prolonged presence. It is a six-step process: Be, Hold, Look, Back, Look, Be. After the last step, you let go and enjoy the fruits of your efforts: prolonged presence. The Sequence is indisputable objective truth. Once you accept it, it is life-transforming. If you don’t understand it, it doesn’t mean you should reject it. If you feel it’s not working, or you are not getting results, you must be making the wrong efforts and you need to keep practicing and learning how to apply it. Don’t get frustrated, disappointed or doubtful; this will only drag you deeper into negativity. Choose your attitude intentionally and replace those negative feelings with unwavering trust. You can’t get anything out of the school if you focus on doubt and negativity instead of on the possibilities and wonderful opportunities. After all, R. W. Emerson said: “That which dominates our imaginations and our thoughts will determine our lives, and our character.”

Today it’s called the Secret:

A group of invisible highly evolved beings called Abraham exclusively transmits ancient esoteric knowledge to Esther. The aim is to use the Secret to become a joyous being, just like eminent people in the past, such as Lincoln, Plato, Shakespeare and Buddha. The Secret has been around for 2.000 years but has been kept hidden and not available to people at large. It has always been kept by the select few. Now it is being revealed to us for the first time in history. Traditions have called it so many different things. But every tradition, every religion, every philosophy, every avatar, every great leader of the past tells us the same thing – they all understood the Secret. By using it, we achieve anything we want, which is the hidden meaning of life on Earth. You should make a habit of it, remember to use it every day, live it, but it should never be a chore. Choose your thoughts carefully. You must control your random thoughts and not allow any negative thoughts to enter, because that’s when you lose. Also, intellectual understanding is not enough – you must find ways to make this emotional, because only the right feeling carries enough power to manifest what you want. When you’re feeling down, change your emotion, think of something beautiful, then dwell on it, block everything out but that thought. When you become intentional and on fire for what you want, the universe will deliver all you want around you. It is a three-step process: Ask, Believe, Receive. After the last step, you let go and enjoy the fruits of your efforts: your new car. The Secret is an objective universal law, it works for everybody, all the time. Once you accept it, it is life-transforming. If you don’t understand it, it doesn’t mean you should reject it. If you feel it’s not working, or you are not getting results, you must be wrongly focusing on what’s lacking, and you must learn how to apply it better. Don’t get frustrated, disappointed or doubtful, because the universe will just respond and manifest failure. Choose your attitude intentionally and replace those negative feelings with unwavering faith. You won’t get results if you keep focusing on what is not there instead of already feeling good. After all, R. W. Emerson said: “The Secret is the answer to all that has been, all that is, and all that will ever be.”

Take your pick: which do you want to believe? Do we find one more believable than the other? More noble? The same arguments can be used to support any end. In what ways is wanting to get presence and immortality different from wanting to get a million dollars and a soul-mate?

The same fundamental need for “special” in us morphs into different external forms. Should we prefer one form over the other? If yes, why?

"another one" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, February 24, 2007:
About the sequence:

In 1930, Mr. Ouspensky commented, “I am still certain that there is a great source from which our system has come. Mr. Gurdjieff must have had contact with that source, but I do not believe it was a complete contact. Something is missing, and he
has not been able to find it. If we cannot find it through him, then our only hope is to have a direct contact with the source; our only hope is that the source will seek us out. That is why I am giving these lectures.”

Five years later, in 1935, Mr. Ouspensky realized that, “Something is missing in the system. If man is meant to remember himself there must have been some simple
method, but it has been lost. I could never find it. Once in India, I heard an echo of such a method. If you find the method you may find the source.”

So Robert found the missing piece. It’s the Sequence! It consists of “6 immortal prescious work I’s”, used in a specific order, like a mantra. It starts with the short “be” and ends with long “be”. You have to say it, intoning it correctly, repeat it, and you’ll be present.

There was also extensive studying of “intoning the sequence”, “anatomy of the sequence”, “turbulence in the sequence”, “guarding long be”, “middle coming” “coming in firmly with be” etc. Prior to this Robert “found” 30 work I’s, lists of which were changed many times before finally he settled on a final version.

“Robert began experimenting with reaching long BE in a few steps and soon after heard a definitive quotation from the Philokalia: “We attain freedom from sin (imagination) in six steps.” He then looked for confirmation of this from other schools and found precisely that. For example, the six-stepped pyramid of Saqquara, the Jewish creation of the world in six days followed by a day of rest, Jesus ascending the mountain after six days and experiencing the transfiguration, and Muhammad ascending six levels of heaven and reaching the seventh. With this, Robert formulated and refined the sequence.”

Basically, Robert now sees meaning in everything and counts things around him. Numbers game. Students do this too – count words in sentences, objects, people, also notice pyramid shapes in things, and do the sequence.

Hope that helps with your question.

"almost 30" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, March 3, 2007:
re [63] I have been a member for almost three decades. Self-remembering, along with the non-expression of negativity, have been the cornerstones of the teaching since the beginning. All the other tantalizing knowledge about types, center of gravity, alchemy, chief feature, identification pale in comparison to these two with Self-remembering being the greater.

I have used many techniques to try to remember myself and the biggest obstacle has always been imagination. It is very seldom one even remembers to make the effort because of imagination and then the effort is soon squashed by more imagination. This may seem silly but try it and see.

The techniques with which I have had the most success are the looking and listening exercises in conjunction with stopping thoughts. I’ve generally used the listening exercise while at a concert or out in nature where there is pleasant background (white) noise. The effort is to stop thoughts, hear the noise in all its complexity, and be present. The looking exercise can be used almost anytime one is not doing anything in particular and would normally be in prolonged imagination (driving a car, walking on the street, in a waiting room). You would be surprised after doing some analysis how much of one’s time is spent in prolonged imagination. The effort is to stop thoughts and then intentionally look at different objects or the scenery, shifting ones gaze every three seconds or so to thwart any associations with what one is looking at which inevitably send one back into imagination.

Although sincere efforts to remember myself always raises my state at least a little bit, prolonged presence occurs more rarely. But it *DOES* occur sometimes. I can produce a higher state at will at least sometimes and for a little while, and I’m getting better at it.

The form of the teaching started to change a couple of years ago. The emphasis on G and O was diminished, although that system is still used with newer students as that background is still incredibly important. Robert started following clues here and there from the esoteric literature where he was able to consolidate the ideas of the forth way into 30 one syllable work I’s. Each of these work I’s represent a larger idea of the system. So instead of using a phrase “I’m in imagination again, try to do the looking exercise”, one would intone internally the syllable “look”. The one syllable part makes it more clear if you are actually self remembering or just thinking about self remembering. The one syllable helps promote the stopping of thoughts better than a whole thought does. These work I’s do not replace anything. The background with the fourth way knowledge is indispensable.

Robert has finally arrived at the sequence, which has been refined through his and others use over the last several months. In its current iteration, one intones internally six of the thirty in this sequence with a space of about one breath, followed by four wordless breaths for a total of ten:

be,hold,theme,back,theme,BE,*,*,*,*

The theme is selected from a small subset of the thirty, other than the four that are fixed. The idea is to try to do as many sequences as possible in series. One would only use sequences at times when one would normally be in prolonged imagination, usually when alone or with someone you are not talking to but enjoying each others presence instead. This is why the theme comes from just a subset of the thirty. In other situations, such as a conversation, the work I talk (speak with presence) could be used individually to remind one where it would be silly in a situation where one would use a sequence. The theme I use the most is look:

be,hold,look,back,look,BE,*,*,*,*

Of course if you just try to do sequences, nothing will happen. It will not work as has been pointed out. And yet for me, this somewhat superficial reconfiguration of my efforts to remember myself, especially in conjunction with the looking and listening exercises, has been miraculous. My efforts produce more experiences with prolonged presence and I remember to make the effort more often. I can honestly say that the sequence has increased the effectiveness of my efforts by at least a magnitude. Very exciting times!

So, as you have intuitively already figured out, the omnipotent pundants do not actually speak for everyone.

"Panoritsa" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, April 21, 2009:

One from the Fence [poster].

Thanks for keeping the discussion going here…

If you left the Fellowship around 2000, you missed the part that drove many members of my generation out of the Cult. Burton started making a very lucrative business from teaching how to “Be present” and adding his own touch to whatever he calls “awakening.” I am very grateful for his contribution. It really opened my eyes.
I got involved in organizing many of his events and the closer I would come the more it would reek of corruption.

But there was a very good combination of brainwashing and my inability to trust my own perception that kept me going and kept me telling myself that everything was fine in the Fellowship. It was just my lower self getting it all wrong.

The fellow students were also trained to divert their thoughts, feelings, doubts, sensations and made serious efforts to focus on the counting of fingers and stars in various “images.” So, we were all hiding behind our four fingers.

I led a large number of well-prepared and well-presented prospective student meetings. Many people joined. I write here from time to time in order to confront my own contribution to the insane institution Fellowship of Friends. I often look at that young woman next to a pervert man at the photographs I have from that odd time. She is so eager to belong to something, willing to work hard, tell her she is doing a good job and she will work even harder. I look at the shame I felt during the years I was in the Fellowship. I take the feeling in and I can understand myself a bit more.

For me being part of such a corrupted organization reflects the way I viewed myself then. And I am now in the process of embracing it all and having some compassion and love for who I was. And I am finding peace.

But the Fellowship is a corrupted place to be. It affects you in many subtle ways.
This forum is a way to express one’s criticism about the Cult.

I’ve told you in private and through this forum that if you are really interested to figure out how to deal with your issues, you need to address the problems on a more personal level. You are playing here. You are acting and you enjoy wasting timing with questioning. You need to call friends (and I can see you have some on the GF) and talk, you need to meet them and have their perfume blend with the warm spring air…You are not communicating. You are hiding. And you know that…

But on the other hand you keep some good discussion going, so we do not really want to lose you…

"Ollie" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, September 29, 2009:
96. I know [post number and blogger]

Maybe there are indeed new people joining Robert Burton’s dwindling cult, be that in the Middle East, Asia or South America. But never mind the sweet hugging and kissing, the deep and meaningful looks from eye to eye, never mind the pretty clothes and flowers, never mind the delicious glasses of wine to wash it all down, what everyone still has to read out and listen to during the weekly meetings are the continued outpourings of Robert Burton’s cultish mind. So anyone with an ear to listen and a heart to feel will soon get a sense that all is not well in Fofland. And if they don’t get it (yes, just like we didn’t for so long), well then… so be it.

Anyway, here are a few very recent pearls of wisdom straight from one of Mr. Burton meetings. It’s about fertility goddesses, big toes, lots of numbers and squares, the Absolute and his angels and what not.
“On Monday we took a pleasant trip to Carmel. From Ocean Avenue we went down to the beach. Normally I always walk on the left side of the beach, but D__n suggested that we walk on the right side, and Influence C had this woman resembling a prehistoric fertility goddess pass us, walking slightly faster. Of course, we were internalizing a lot more than she was. Essentially, we were the only ones there. Here [pointing to a photo on the big screen] I am following her footprints – the footprints of the prehistoric… The Egyptian Legends say, ‘Isis suckled the child in a solitary place, and none knew where this place was, and he grew in strength.’ The woman walked all the way to the end of the beach to a remote spot and then went behind a rock. To give birth to a sequence, she went far from the ten thousand ‘I’s. Afterwards we went to the restaurant Nepenthe in Big Sur for a sunset dinner. I formed my magnetic center at Big Sur. I was there by myself on Christmas Day when I was twenty-four. This time they put a little girl at the fireplace. She later crossed her legs and looked up. Now, of course, I speak from the higher emotional center, and you listen from the higher emotional center – card twenty-one. Quite surprisingly, here [pointing to another photo on the big screen] we see a license plate with the date of my birthday – May 12 – which is, in fact, the birth of our opportunity. It is a red Lexus, which means ‘protector of mankind’ – the third eye, the protector of the sequence. It also has an outer meaning should the Last Judgment occur. If it occurs, we will survive it.”

“A fresco by Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel depicts Jonah and the Whale [pointing to another photo on the big screen]. Here we see Jonah making a square between his legs. His right foot is lifted, which may indicate the end of the sequence. At right, the big toe represents long BE, with the four other toes going outside of time. If that were not enough, the steward also makes an empty square with the fingers of his left hand. Diana K_y saw this license plate saying ‘SHK SPR’ – Shakespeare. The spear that the steward must shake is the thirty work ‘I’s. In the King James version of Psalm 46, which was translated when Shakespeare was forty-six years old, they placed the word ‘shake’ forty-six words from the beginning, and the word ‘spear’ forty-six words from the end of the psalm. You see how clever they are. The King James Bible is a conscious work. I think it has a few problems, but probably not many. It is the only time they used the words ‘shake’ and ‘spear.’”

“In 2015 we will celebrate the forty-fourth anniversary of Apollo. It is one hundred years after Ouspensky first met Gurdjieff in 2015. Shakespeare was fifty-two when he died, the number of weeks in a year. He died on the same date as the day he was born – short Be and long BE. Ouspensky died at sixty-seven. Gurdjieff died at approximately eighty-six. Rodney Collin died at forty-six.”
“The Absolute created the universe to love and be loved. I can only speak a little about what I think might have occurred. Apparently, before He created the galaxies, there was just darkness. It is possible that there was Himself, and then all kinds of magnetic fields appeared to oppose Him. Like our instinctive centers, these magnetic fields can never die. They can never be born, but they can also never die. Our magnetic field has been in other bodies, and after we die and ascend, it descends to the moon. However, it is possible that at one time there were no galaxies, and only darkness. Somehow He raised Himself into consciousness to create the universe. It is very orderly… Life has a theory about the creation of the universe called the Big Bang theory, but it is just an attempt to explain it. The universe is extremely well-ordered. The Absolute created conscious beings out of love for us, and then in return to be loved by us. It is quite chilling to think that once there was only darkness. Apparently, He has never had a beginning, nor will He ever have an end. A marvelous relief carving from Tell El-Amarna [pointing to another photo on the big screen] depicts the Adoration of Aten. A detail shows Akhenaten with the hand of God. He is an androgynous steward, with wide ‘fertility’ hips, and a slender waist for eating only lawful food. It is quite an unusual combination, but it is intended to convey the message. Coming around his back under his arm are four fingers making a square, signifying a sequence coming from presence.”

“First and foremost, the Absolute wants gentle and inconspicuous presence from his angels. The state we are in is exactly what He wants from His angels, so we are doing very well. This state validates us as a school. Here [pointing to another photo on the big screen] we are looking at the sunset in Napa Valley. A ceramic sculpture by Andrea della Robbia [pointing to another photo on the big screen] depicts the Virgin Mary, Christ, and Eight Angels. Mary – the white queen – is kneeling, showing four fingers on each hand, as does the infant Christ. The artist does something interesting: the Christ child makes an empty square between his legs. He has a finger in his mouth because he does not want any more sequential utterances.”

“Wordless presence is the ultimate sanity. Our meetings reaffirm this state. Only this state is sanity. Here [pointing to another photo on the big screen] is a photograph taken of a meeting during Journey Forth. This is how we look. It is lovely, is it not? We are so attentive.”

“I think that the idea of having nine lives does exist in schools. Plato spoke of ‘cloud nine’ – the control of the passions. In any case, it is obvious that we are ascending souls. If I had to wager, I would say that we have nine lives, and that the Absolute accepts a cycle of nine lives as sufficient payment for divine presence and immortality. If you encounter any information on this subject, please let us know.”

"Artichoke" [formerly Robert's Sex Life] wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, March 3, 2007:
Happy as the Day is Long Said, March 3rd, 2007 at 7:49 pm:

There are no “dogmas promoted by Robert and some orthodox students”. One must verify everything — and, more importantly, remember what you verify.

————–

The 30 Work Is have been quite helpful to me, the sequence has some potential but is very difficult for me to use. But they were invented by Robert and Asaf. I have never seen any quote that convinces me that the ancient writer used 30 or 6 to refer to the work ‘I’s. And the interpretation of the keys keeps changing to accommodate the sequence and work Is. But the dogma now states that the earlier schools all used this technique. And now the cavemen did it too. This is dogma, and Robert believes it (Asaf too from what I can see) and they want us to believe it. I have seen Asaf become angry when his interpretation is questioned. Girard gives us some balance, because he doesn’t believe that these writers meant what Robert and Asaf are claiming, but he still uses the work Is and sequence, and he treats the keys as a Robert’s new work language, not as historical truth. But he is very careful not to be too outspoken about his lack of belief in Robert’s claims about the earlier schools. And he has been edged out of the picture at Isis to an extent. Robert’s claims about the schools and the interpretation of passages are dogma. And it’s easy in many cases to verify that they don’t refer to the work Is or the sequence.

"Medusa" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, March 5, 2007:

And there it was…the image of a prehistoric drawing of a man penetrating a woman from behind, she is on her hands and knees; Robert comments; “…and here we have the steward (the man) working together with the 9 of hearts (the woman) to complete a successful sequence…

Please, my dear friends, have some respect for you own intelligence, use it, defend it, nourish it….

I’m happy for whoever finds himself happily living and embracing the abuse, this blog is NOT for them, at this point, just stay OUT of it and finish your many successful sequences on hands and knees, if you like ;

this window is for those who are recognizing and suffering the misery and looking for a cure …
There are so many feeling sick.You know them , you see them struggling, you used to call them friends….

What the hell happened to us ????

Keep your intelligence, nourish your spirits with fine food, reject the abuse, reject the insult, you are entitled, you owe it to your self…

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, August 10, 2007:
Just Me [PA quotes blogger and responds in parentheses:]

…I’m sharp enough to know my mind is not controlled… (Really?)

…I know that at first I thought he’d lost his mind, …

(Very accurate perception! You should have stayed with it.)

…but after a period of time I began to realize first that they were not as the general world assumes, …

(After a period of time… Something happened to your mind – the false all of a sudden became true. You should have trusted your first feeling! Oh yes, the “general world”… These asleep 99,9999%… but you imagine yourself above it, like, special, right?)

…I’m beginning to see patterns now…

(I guess it’s too late for you then. You’ll see more and more patterns, deeper meanings, keys, omens, numbers etc. It may be harder and harder for you to simply see things as they are without turning them into something.)

…but why am I wasting my time?

(I don’t know. Good question. I suggest going back to your sequence that works for you.)

GIRAFFE

“A rock painting from Algeria, dating to 100 AD, depicts a giraffe with nine circles, representing control of the passions.” [Link no longer works]

http://img46.imageshack.us/img46/7466/883phgiraffeinredpe8.jpg

Guys, I am so glad that we can know this now. 9 circles! Who would have guessed what it really means. And now we know!

“The intelligence of the creators of the images understanding they had no idea who or when someone would attempt to interpret them and knowing this to create a message that could even possibly be interpreted, so many thousands of years later, well…”

You’re right. Thank God it finally got interpreted! How useful. How deep.

If those creators only knew what happened to their innocent image many thousands of years later… If they could only see that a delusional man will eventually interpret it to fit his hideous teaching so he could make more money… And that other intelligent but brainwashed men will swallow this idiocy and even sing praises and ask for more… I bet you those poor cave-men would have washed this freakin giraffe off the wall!

Just remember what you said JM – “I know that at first I thought he’d lost his mind”…

This is the truth, right there. You saw it. Your conscience saw it.

The rest is mind control and self-bullshitting.

"Crouching Tiger" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, July 25, 2007:

Just a few odds and ends…

Someone asked about Asaf’s current marital status a while back. I understand he’s planning to marry Ansl.P [Ansley Pierce], the whole ‘waiting for the under-aged to mature’ myth has been abandoned.

I participated in the Research Octave, doing much of the work on the Sufis. There are two groups of researchers, one of about 100 for run-of-the-mill events in the charge of Mihai, another smaller group of about 30 for ‘special’ events run by Yoad. We all sent in quotations – usually about half-a-page’s worth which then get refined – oftentimes out of existence! – by an inner panel at Isis. People were expected to use wordsearch to pick up appropriate quotations… so if the subject was ‘The Passions’ for instance, you’d just type in ‘Passions’ and see what you got. I am not computer-friendly, so I did it by reading through a lot of books and putting endless bookmarks and dog-ears in them! This was much more fun for me, and helped my understandings a lot.

Long quotations are discouraged, they put too much strain on the English/Understanding of the panel recipient. Quotations are frequently altered, or taken wildly out of context by the panel. For example, one quotation from Ibn Arabi: “If you do not see Him, he certainly sees You”. The ‘Him’ here is Allah, with the rough meaning that God/Presence is always available, two millimetres underneath the ‘skin’ of Life. When the quote was used (frequently) by RB at meetings/events, however, ‘Him’ was mysteriously translated as the King of Clubs, with the idea ‘Be fearful, KC is always watching and waiting to pounce’. The difference in Life-attitude this change represents shouldn’t require any further comment!

The Research octave is happy to skip over the surface of the deep pond of the religions/philosophies it proposes to ‘distil’. The attention-span of the octave is superficial and fickle, it doesn’t stay with any one subject long enough to really allow it to penetrate to a deeper level. The use of wordsearch as a tool is typical of this ‘shortcut’ mentality.

Students are now being requested to ‘find’ visual images which re-inforce the current teaching and can be corralled into RB’s current constellation of interests (Pre-history etc). They have also recently been asked to pay particular attention to the number “11″ or “10+1″. I.E. 6 steps of the sequence, plus 4 wordless breaths, then a new “Be” – the eleventh step – beginning another cycle.

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, August 8, 2007:
This is precious and it’s getting better and better. We are so incredibly lucky aren’t we. Robert our Beloved teacher is now moving with a lightning speed. (towards a mental asylum?)

***********

“A Dutch manuscript, dating from 1430 depicts Elisha on his deathbed telling
Joash to shoot an arrow. The old man dying represents the steward completing his sequence. He is telling Joash—long BE—work ‘I’ number six—to release and partake of the four wordless breaths.

Here the bed has the same meaning as the throne. The four ornaments on Elisha’s pillow represent the four wordless breaths, while his nipples represent long BE and short Be. The four trees outside, which are framed by a narrow gate, also represent the four wordless breaths. The figure on the upper left represents short Be, bringing a new sequence.” [Link no longer works]

http://img182.imageshack.us/img182/5978/1585elishaonhisdeathbedic2.jpg

How in the world can he see such deep meaning in 2 nipples, trees, deathbed, pillow? Wow. He must be conscious no doubt.

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, July 6, 2007:
Another example of “fishing” for sacred teaching, or Sacred Teaching in the making.
Let’s collect all your random I’s, then have Robert and Asaf regurgitate them, then stage a meeting and make sure it’s filmed and then printed as “Thoughts from the Teacher”- and here’s our new “sacred teaching” for sale!

How can anyone in their sane mind take this “teaching” seriously…
“Dear Friends,

We are attempting to understand the esoteric meaning of the Zodiac. Our aim is to understand how it relates to the sequence of six work ‘I’s-the essence of the system-rather than life’s psychological interpretations of the signs.

A few initial observations: There are twelve signs in the zodiac, roughly corresponding to the twelve months in a year. This suggests that they occur in time, in sequence, where one follows another. At this point, however, we do not know why twelve and not six. Another instance we see a sequence of twelve is in the Egyptian teaching, in the twelve hours of the Amduat, where the night bark travels through the twelve hours of the night before emerging into the daylight hours. Note that there are also twelve hours of daylight, suggesting long BE lasts as long as the steps it took to reach it-although at this point we are only presuming this and are not certain whether or not this is the right interpretation.

In a school, it is enough that one student make a connection for the whole to benefit, as has been the case several times since we began working with the keys. We would therefore like to invite any suggestions and insights you have that can shed more light into the esoteric meaning of the Zodiac. Keep in mind that ultimately the answers are simple and obvious once revealed.

If you have any relevant thoughts on this subject, please send them to xxx…

Thank you,

Asaf.”

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, July 10, 2007:

More Truth, more laughs. Please enjoy and don’t forget to do the sequence!

More Sacred images and sacred de-codings taught by Beloved Teacher these days. Don’t you just envy Howard Carter and his friends? See what you’re missing?
OSTRICH EGG [Link no longer works]

http://img146.imageshack.us/img146/9959/845prehistoricostrichesjh7.jpg

A rock carving depicting an ostrich egg, found in Libya, dates to 8,000-6,000 BP. Inside the egg are six baby ostriches, representing the sequence. The three ostriches whose bodies are completely visible represent the three Be’s— the first coming, the middle coming, and the second coming. (Similarly, an Egyptian wall painting depicts a man—representing the steward—holding a basket—representing the nine of hearts—containing six ostrich eggs, on the top of which sits the feather of truth with thirty divisions.) Rumi said, “You have flown beyond the egg of this world”—you have flown beyond the sequence—Be, Hold, Hear, Back, Hear, BE—and now you have the four wordless breaths of divine presence, with their inhalation and exhalation. The egg is a womb for the bird.

MATING SCENE [Link no longer works]

http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/5907/842prehistoriclovesceneuc6.jpg

A prehistoric rock painting depicts a mating couple. What makes this image more than merely erotic art is the headband of ten divisions worn by the woman—the nine of hearts—which represents the ten thousand passions under control. Prehistoric symbolism rarely went this far. The man is in long BE form. The man and woman both have two arms, but while the woman has two legs, the man has only one leg, his three limbs representing the three Be’s—the first coming, the middle coming, and the second coming. The woman is kneeling, which means that the sequence is actually working, and the man is penetrating her, which means that Be is engaging presence. They are in love—the sequence is acting.

The steward and the nine of hearts are copulating, engaging divine presence. Although they each have two arms, and the woman has two breasts and two legs, the man stands upon a single leg, which we take as long BE. The man represents the three Be’s—his two arms are short Be and middle Be, and his leg is long BE. The woman is in the long BE position, and marvelously, has a headband with ten divisions on her head. This means that the nine of hearts is in control of the ten thousand ‘I’s. She has engaged divine presence and is kneeling before the state we are in—the third eye. Her two breasts probably represent Be and Hold. This demonstrates that there is far more information in these images than people would suspect. In Going Forth by Day, it is written, “I have not had intercourse with a married woman”—with the nine of clubs, who is married to the ten thousand ‘I’s. “I have not wrongly copulated”—the steward has not listened to ‘I’s unrelated to the sequence. Hafiz called them the “ten thousand idiots,” because they think they are the state we are in. The painting of the mating couple conveys the same message as the Egyptian figures kneeling to engage the divine presence of Ra. The headband of the mating woman, the cave painting with five left hands and one right hand, and the carving of Sekhmet are irrefutable evidence that the prehistoric people had the system. In fact, they not only had the system, but they were its originators four cycles before Egypt.

"dick moron" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, July 25, 2007:

#297 Crouching Tiger wrote [above]:

“Long quotations are discouraged, they put too much strain on the English/Understanding of the panel recipient.”

This entire scenario sounds like the old engravings/daily card projects years ago in FOF. Researchers dug up short, profound sounding quotes that RB liked and they were displayed below the steel-engraved visage of the writer. And the little card with the letter-pressed quotation was always waiting for you on little tables at the Lodge, on a daily basis. Most of the journals published by RB had the same clipped quotes and thoughts.

For me the pattern through all this has been RB’s inability to develop a thought for more than a few seconds. Why write a treatise (which is much work) when you can recite a 2-line quote pulled from someone else’s work. Do this with a seriously pained expression on your face while wearing expensive clothes and gaudy jewelry, and you have a teaching.

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, July 10, 2007:

More Effort! More Effort! More Money! More Madness!

From our Beloved Teacher:
VASE AND SPIRALS

The spirals painted upon a pre-dynastic vase, now in the British Museum, represent a series of successful sequences; the vase itself represents the nine of hearts. The message of the vase is hidden behind simplicity, while the message on the tomb is hidden behind complexity. We can see how close the pre-dynastic school of Egypt is to the prehistoric school.

http://img479.imageshack.us/img479/8936/735bowlwithswirlsfltbb9.jpg

TWO GIRAFFES

A rock painting from Nigeria, dating from 7,000-5,000 BP “before present”), depicts two giraffes. Interestingly, the smaller giraffe, representing short Be, has the back legs of a rhinoceros—the lower self—while the taller giraffe, representing long BE—has giraffe’s legs. This means that the sequence is rising from imagination—the Hanged Man card in the Tarot—to short Be. Both short Be and long BE are tethered, which means that the passions are under control. Marvelously, the tall giraffe has four divisions on his tail, while the smaller giraffe has five divisions on his tail, totaling nine divisions, and representing the control of the passions.

…two giraffes in short Be and long BE form, with the four wordless breaths—the four inhalations and exhalations—at the top. Interestingly, the giraffe representing short Be has the legs of a rhinoceros. This is a clever way to say that short Be is coming out of imagination.

http://img329.imageshack.us/img329/3165/851preshistoricgiraffeseu7.jpg

NEFERTITI

A painted limestone statue from the Egyptian Museum in Berlin depicts Nefertiti. We can see that her slender neck, which represents the sequence flowing freely, is not choked by the lower self. Mohammed said, “There are people who recite the Koran but it does not go beyond their collarbones.” They intone Be, Hold, Hear, Back, Hear, BE, without engaging presence; it stops at their “collarbones.” This is why Nefertiti has a slender neck.

The bust of Nefertiti represents the nine of hearts in “reverent devotion.” She is wearing a blue crown, which means that the nine of hearts has established the prolonged divine presence of the third eye.

Her slender, elegant neck represents the sequence moving freely, failing to be strangled by the lower self. [Link no longer works]

http://img503.imageshack.us/img503/6601/628nefertitibustbv5.jpg

ARABIC LETTER

Here, we see the first letter of the Arabic alphabet, Baa. (BTW, it’s a lie, the first letter is Alef, Baa is second. Or well, it’s not the first lie and who cares, right? -P.A.)

Interestingly, it has a similar configuration to the boat of Ra—a vertical front or back, and a curved ending or beginning. We can think of it as the ark engaging divine presence. The point below, which has four sides, is work ‘I’ number six, the top of the pyramid. … In the Roman alphabet, the lower-case letter ‘i’ has a small dot on top, reflecting the humility of work ‘I’ number six, unlike the uppercase letter ‘I,’ which has no dot.

http://img503.imageshack.us/img503/2750/662letterbaaep2.jpg


"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, August 9, 2007:

As Just Me (624) says – So much of what I have read on this blog tonight is based on imagination! … the ideas presented (by RB) are true… It’s very simple. The ideas are not from RB, they are ancient, who are we to judge them?

OK folks! Here’s some ancient true ideas and please remember they are not at all from Burton but straight from the ancients. In fact this is precisely what the ancients had in mind. Marvelous, isn’t it? And who are we to judge anyway, like, really who are we to even think or judge or doubt?

These interpretations are not imagination, oh no. It is the Holy truth. It is the Absolute Objective Truth straight from the ancients. It has nothing to do with Burton-Asaf dynamic duo at all.

So if you suddenly have a question at the meeting or event: “How the f-k does he come up with this?” – remember, it’s your Lower Self asking this. Shut up and keep listening. Look in the eye.

So simple, isn’t it.

Please enjoy.
http://img120.imageshack.us/img120/9451/truthbyrblx1.jpg

NECKLACE:

A necklace made of thirty bear and lion teeth was found in France, and dates to approximately 12,000 BP (Before Present – it’s Burton’s way of counting – P.A.) It represents the thirty “imperishable stars”—the thirty great work ‘I’s engaging the four wordless breaths. Among the teeth are two shells, representing short Be and long BE, while the four large teeth represent the four wordless breaths. (A Tibetan statue depicts Milarepa showing his twenty-eight teeth, which along with his two lips, representing Be and Hold, add up to thirty.) All schools come down to this: the four wordless breaths—presence without words. It all comes down
to your ability to do this personally, your responsibility to use the sequence personally.

STAG’S ANTLERS:

In a rock painting from the Lascaux cave, dating from 15,000-13,000 BP, the stag has two antlers with nine points on each, representing the control of the seventy-two passions. There is no telling how many conscious beings the prehistoric schools have produced.

THREE MONKEYS:

A seventeenth-century wood-carving from the temple in Nikko, Japan depicts three monkeys, representing the three Be’s. They are working hard to not be distracted from their sequence. The monkey covering his ears represents the first coming; the monkey covering his eyes represents the second coming; the monkey covering his mouth represents the middle coming. Around them are leaves, representing previous successful sequences, with the three Be’s in the center.

*Monkeys are doing the sequence! Working hard not to be distracted! This is simply hilarious…C’mon guys at least RB got a sense of humor. Do you get it monkeys? JM, Fat one, Who the F-k Knows? This is just way too funny.

IBEX:

A rock painting depicting an ibex’s head, found in France, dates to 13,000 BP. The “ladder” between its two horns represents Be and Hold, while the four squares on the “ladder” represent the four wordless breaths. The white belly of the ibex may represent the lower self under control during the four wordless breaths.

DEVIL STEALING TIME

An advertisement shows the devil stealing an Omega watch. Although it is a modern image, it goes deep. Jesus said, “I am Alpha and Omega”—I am short Be and long BE. Similarly, Quetzalcoatl, which means “feathered serpent”—refers to short Be (the serpent) and long BE (the vulture). In this image, the lower self is attacking the sequence at omega—work ‘I’ number six. Be, Hold, Hear, Back, and Hear have all survived imagination, and there is only one more chance for the lower self to destroy the sequence—at work ‘I’ number six—long BE.
Much Laugh To You All! :-)

"unoanimo" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, August 9, 2007:
isis NEW FLASH Part 2
Ordering Information for Psychological Thinking A New Booklet by Girard Haven
And The Sequence: Preparing the Nine of Hearts for Prolonged Presence

Dear Friends,

A few days ago, you should have received an a-mail advertisement announcing the publication of two booklets. One is a reprint of The Sequence: Preparing the Nine of Hearts for Prolonged Presence, which looks at how each work ‘I’ in the sequence adds a necessary element to the emotional state required for prolonged presence. The other is a new publication entitled Psychological Thinking, which deals with the use of what Mr. Ouspensky calls the psychological method to understand Robert’s current teaching.

Both booklets will be available during “Journey Forth to Isis ” at a price of $7.00 per copy, or $5.00 where there is a genuine need. Students who will be at Isis may purchase copies at the Grand Bazaar, as well as at selected other events and locations.

Students who will not be at Isis may place orders with Albert G. by telephone at _______________. Because the price does not include shipping, purchasers are responsible for making their own arrangements for collecting the booklets they purchase. Please include the following information for each order: the buyer’s name, their center, the number of copies of each booklet being purchased, the price being paid for each copy, how payment will be made, and the arrangements which have been made to pick-up the copies.

To simplify shipping and payment, we ask students to please coordinate their orders wherever possible. The easiest way to do that will be to have one person in each center collect the orders and payments, and then to give them to someone who will be going to Isis. If you do not know of anyone who will be at Isis, please write either to me or to Albert to discuss other possibilities. For instance, it may be possible to make payments through PayPal, and delivery might be arranged through a neighboring center or in conjunction with Robert’s planned Italian Journey.

For your convenience, an optional order form is attached to the end of this message. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact either Albert or me.

Thank you, and may your sequences be more successful with every passing day.

In friendship,

Girard
______________________________________

Whooooo! Preparing the Nine of Hearts for the Sequence; not to mention that Robert Burton is a ‘nine’ of hearts…

Translation ~ We, the Fellowship of Friends are paving the way to prepare Robert Burton for The Sequence of new boys arriving, both alone, with their parents, wives and girlfriends to this years ballet gala; the publication of these ‘books’ (with the mention of Ouspensky’s name, just a little reminder that we’re still a fourth way school and that Girard is still the affirmative O. to Robert’s G-(string) ) should pretty much balance things out; no cameras, cell phones or news crews are allowed in Robert’s bedroom after the traditional Ballet after performance dinner… where Robert, like always, (Isn’t this fun?) attempts to slooth the male and females alike from the ballet company to join his ball-et’cum-pan-knee…
__________________________

Whooooo… see you on the courts!

:.)

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, August 23, 2007:
Some recent deep wisdom from Our Beloved Mad Teacher.

Did you know that there is much more to 10 mammoths? Also, your usual reed coaster has a hidden deeper meaning. Wow.

Actually, whatever you see – is not it. Don’t ever believe your eyes – it’s all way more complicated! Let the Beloved Teacher explain. It’s either means a sequence, or a pyramid, or wordless breaths. See? Marvelous, isn’t it?

Enjoy.
10 MAMMOTHS AND 10 WOMEN

A cave painting from Rouffignac, dating from 14,000-11,000 BP, depicts a procession of ten mammoths. The six mammoths on the right represent the sequence, while the four mammoths facing them on the left represent “the salvation of God” – the four wordless breaths. The end of the sequence and the beginning of the four wordless breaths is where the “two worlds touch.” The two mammoths that are facing each other have two overlapping tusks, as well as two tusks not shown here, representing the four wordless breaths. It is a marvelous image.

Similarly, the fifteenth-century “Voynich manuscript” depicts a procession of ten women. The six women on the right, who are all touching, represent the sequence. Facing them on the left are four women, representing the four wordless breaths. The mammoths and the women represent the sequence, while the women also represent the white queen on the chessboard – the nine of hearts. A popular song says, “It’s still the same old story – a fight for love” – work ‘I’ number six – “and glory” – the four wordless breaths. I recently saw an advertisement on television that said, “So simple, even a caveman can do it.”

REED MAT

“Without corners” means that it is firm and even like a perfect square. A pre-dynastic reed mat in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo illustrates this idea. I could not quite believe it when I saw it. The “perfect square” in the center represents the four wordless breaths, while the eight rings of the spiral leading to it represent the inhalation and exhalation of the four wordless breaths.

http://img171.imageshack.us/img171/3184/imagekm5.jpg

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, September 30, 2007:
Aren’t students sick already of Bob’s compulsive counting and keying madness? He seems to be totally obsessed with counting everything. He turns simple objects into sequence, Be’s and nine of hearts in his sick mind. This is imagination at it’s worst – when simple reality cannot be seen for what it is anymore and instead is substituted with contrived and distorted subjective concepts and meanings…
Don’t you see that the guy has really lost his mind?

Does anyone still takes his progressing insanity as “sacred teaching”?

Please. Open your eyes.

This is from the recent meeting:
“The Madonna represents the nine of hearts. … Mary holds the Christ child with four fingers on each side, representing the four wordless breaths. They are looking into each other’s eyes, which signifies that the nine of hearts and the sequence are remaining in touch. … Mary’s blue “garment of virtue” extends beyond the frame of the composition, which means that the sequence has passed outside of time with the inhalation and exhalation of the four wordless breaths. The Christ child is in white because he has completed a sequence.”

‘The two figures blowing trumpets at the top represent long BE and short Be. Starting from right to left, the six figures beneath them to the left of the groom represent Be, Hold, Look, and then the furthest figure to the back, Back, followed by long BE in blue on the end, with his ten fingers representing the Ten Commandments. The groom represents the steward, the bride represents the nine of hearts, while in the middle stands God the Father. Together they form the Holy Trinity. At the top, the three Italian stone pines represent the three Be’s. There are four windows on the right, below which are four maidens, representing the four wordless breaths. The two pots beneath the trees represent short Be and long BE. Fra Angelico is very organized. In schools we must count the numbers because the artists counted them before they painted their works.”
Yes, keep counting, dears… In schools we must count.

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, September 30, 2007:
He was counting poops, cocks and breasts, and now he’s into feet:
“The woman above the vase shows five toes on one foot and three toes on the other. Renaissance artists often did this rather than show four toes on each foot. It signifies the nine of hearts engaging the inhalation and exhalation of the four wordless breaths.”

“The five toes of the man’s inner right foot are facing us, while the big toe on his left foot, representing long BE, is outside of time.”

“Washing the feet” means purifying the nine of hearts of imagination.”

Woman with horn
"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, July 26, 2007:
A lovely piece of Scared [sic?] Teaching for your education:

WOMAN WITH HORN
“He who controls the stomach diminishes the passions.” [The Philokalia, Evagrios the Solitary]
[New teaching interpretation:] He who controls the lower self, which is located in the intestines, diminishes the ten thousand ‘I’s. In Jonah 2:2, it is written, “Out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardest my voice.” A rock relief found in France, dating to 22,000 BP, depicts a pregnant woman with a horn. It refers not to child-bearing, but to fertility of sequences, like the figures of the laughing Buddha. Her two breasts represent short Be and long BE, while her hand covers the lower self. It means that the sequence is controlling the lower self. She holds a ram’s horn with twelve divisions, representing the four wordless breaths, lasting three seconds each.

"Purchasing awakening" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, August 13, 2007:
OK, let’s collect pictures folks and make our own unique FOF teaching. Robert will turn many I’s from many people into the new objective teaching by adding even more I’s. Experienced PhotoShop users needed.
July 2005

Dear Friends,

Several weeks ago, Mi-ch–l G—ng sent out an email with a draft of the revised Thirty Work I’s, inviting suggestions or comments to help refine the list. There will be a new publication in mid-August and the aim is to include images representing the Thirty Work I’s. Robert has said that symbols can bypass the intellectual center and go straight to the higher centers.

The focus for gathering the images is the Thirty Work I’s rather than each individual work I; also those which symbolize the first two work I’s,Be and Hold. We have a number of images already and the hope is by opening up the search to students around the world, it will benefit us all with new discoveries.

Sarah

******************************

Dear Friends,

We are asking for help again searching for images. This time the focus is on images that represent each of the individual thirty work I’s. Some of you sent these in with the last request for images.

For example, for the second work I, HOLD, the stained glass of the angel holding onto the second rung of the ladder is a good visual image of HOLD.

Again of particular interest are images from the Egyptian, early
Christian, Gothic, Byzantine, Persian, Hindu and now Chinese sources; there have been some revealing images outside these traditions and if you feel they depict a particular work I well, please send them.

Images are used in Robert’s meetings and other teaching events and help us penetrate the state we are after. A picture is worth a thousand words.

With Love, Sarah

*************************

Dear Friends,

Robert would like students to use the attached image as a desktop image on their computers.

Thank you.

Linda, Isis

Few days later after many questions:
The source of the desktop image is from the Royal Portal at Chartres Cathedral (right bay archivolts of the West facade). Circa 1145. The archivolts depict the Seven Liberal Arts, with scholars who best illustrate each art.

The two scholars shown in the picture represent Music on the left, and Grammar on the right. The quotation is not part of the original picture, but was entered via PhotoShop.

In presence,

Linda, Isis

http://img135.imageshack.us/img135/6906/desktopimage800600kf2.jpg

[ed. - The following is from the Fellowship of Friends wiki page.]

Studying the Keys

Short Bibliography (some of the books may only be found in English but source materials can be found in most languages)

The Russian Philokalia, A separate body of work from the Philokalia, seems to be using the keys too. Example would be the works of Abbot Nazarius who said: If you wish to enter the kingdom of heaven (presence), your virtues (Work I’s) must surpass your sins (mechanical I’s) by far.

Philokalia: writings of: John of the Ladder, John of Damascus, Symeon Metaphrastis, Symeon the New Theologian, Mark the Ascetic, Maximus the Confessor etc…

Early Christianity – The works of the Desert Fathers, John Cassian, etc..

Writings related to the Gothic Cathedrals – such as Bernard of Clairvaux and Sugar.

Byzantine Images in early churches.

Early Illuminated Manuscripts.

Nag Hammadi, Gospel of Thomas and other Gnostic literature.

Arabian Nights. Any translation.

Early Islamic writings - -Hadith, Koran (We use Pickthall translation).

Tarot – We are using the Camoin deck; can be purchased at: http://www.camoin.com/index.asp

Sufi: Rumi – Divan, Mathnawi

Hafiz, - Divan
Kabir - Bijak
Ibn Arabi -
Al Ghazali -
Attar – Conference of the Birds, Muslims Saints and Mystics.

Old Testament and New Testament – King James Version.

Hindu – Mahabharata (and the Gita) , Upanishads.

Tibetan book of the Dead.

Egyptian books:
Richard Wilkinson: "Reading Egyptian Art"

Richard Wilkinson: "Magic & Symbols"

"The Egyptian Book of the Dead", translation by Faulkner, Chronicle Books, 2nd revised edition, 1998

"The Literature of Ancient Egypt", edited by William Kelly Simpson, Yale University Press, 2003

Joanne Fletcher: "Ancient Egypt: Life, Myth & Art"

"Egyptian Treasures from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo", Abrams Press.

"The Quest for Immortality: Treasures of Ancient Egypt", E. Hornung & B. Bryan, editors, Prestel Publishers, 2002. (Note: This was published in conjunction with the exhibition currently in Las Vegas.)
Examples of Keys from the last Thoughts from the Teacher Volume 4 – Number 27
Egyptian
“How beautiful indeed it is to see,” says Isis; “How fortunate indeed it is to see,” says Nephthys to the king, as he ascends to heaven among the imperishable stars.” [Pyramid Texts]
“How beautiful indeed it is to see”—to be present. “Indeed” is the key word here, for one must have “good deeds”—the thirty work ‘I’s—in order to be present. The “imperishable stars” are also a reference to the thirty work ‘I’s. It was lovely to see the mystical shrine at Edfu, crowned with thirty stars. In the Pyramid texts from Saqqara, dating from around 2,650 B.C., we see the system in its earliest form.
“A messenger has come to the king; a divine word which will cause him to arise.”
[Pyramid Texts]
The thirty work ‘I’s are referred to as “messengers.” They are also called “pilgrims.” “A messenger has come to the king” means that a work ‘I’ has come to the steward—“a divine word which will cause him to arise”—from imagination to presence. The divine word is “Be.” It is lovely, is it not? The Sufis speak beautifully about the word “be.” Rumi said, “God is paying special attention to you, is holding you close, and whispering in your ear the original word: ‘Be.’” The first work ‘I’ is the “original word.” Of course, “special attention” means divided attention. The Egyptians wrote, “I have seen the deathless Triumphant and the Morning Star who walks divinely among them.” Work ‘I’ number one—the morning star—walks divinely among the thirty work ‘I’s.
“I ally myself with the divine Isis.” [Going Forth by Day]
It is very difficult to find an esoteric idea that has not been previously expressed by the Egyptians, because their school lasted three thousand years. About six weeks ago, when studying the thought, “The Eye of Horus has been presented unto thee; journey with it,” we discovered a new key. “The Eye of Horus has been presented unto thee” means that the steward has engaged presence; “journey with it” means prolong presence. It was from this passage we understood that “journey forth by day” means prolong presence. This is the great secret of Egypt—the greatest secret in the universe. Howard Carter discovered the external meaning with Tutankhamen’s tomb; our school has discovered the internal meaning. These are secrets that make man immortal. The schools that came after Egypt did not need to change the system, because the Egyptians had perfected it.

Gilgamesh
“Eat bread, it is the staff of life; drink wine, it is the custom of the land.”
[Epic of Gilgamesh]
The first written record of the Gilgamesh epic appeared in 2,500 BC. However, there was probably an oral tradition five hundred years before that. Here, they are calling bread the “staff of life.” It is the staff of conscious life, because the thirty work ‘I’s produce conscious life in us. “Eat bread” means use these thirty work ‘I’s. “Drink wine” means prolong presence. All schools are the same school, using the same system. The outer form changes, but the inner meaning always remains the same. It is the same school, the same class.

Old Testament
“Go thy way, eat thy bread with joy, and drink thy wine with a merry heart; for God now accepteth thy works.” [Ecclesiastes 9:7]
“God now accepteth thy works” means that the higher centers have utilized the thirty work ‘I’s to sustain presence. This is why, in John 11:41, Jesus said, “Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me”—that I sent impulses to be present and you responded with presence. In Genesis 18:3, Abraham said, “If now I have found favor in thy sight, pass not away.” Abraham—the steward—engaged presence, and he asked to remain in presence and not return to imagination.
“And he [Abraham] lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him.” [Genesis 18:2]
Abraham “lift up his eyes,” and Jesus “lifted up his eyes”—that is, they went from the ten thousand mechanical ‘I’s to the thirty work ‘I’s. In the Philokalia, it is written, “If you are not among the few, you will find yourself with the many.” If you are not among the thirty work ‘I’s, then you have no choice but to be in imagination among the ten thousand. “Abraham lifts up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him”—the intellectual parts of centers promoting presence. These are the same three wise men who visited Christ.

Tibetan Book of the Dead
“Know thyself, and abide in that state.”
Be present and prolong presence. “Know thyself”—be present—and “abide in that state”—prolong presence.

New Testament
“He [Jesus] took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her … arise. And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years.” [Mark 5:41-42]
In Acts 12:13, it is written, “As Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken.” This means that Peter—the steward—used the thirty work ‘I’s until world twelve appeared.
“And I say to you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” [Luke 11:9]
Seek, and you will find the present. How do we seek? With the thirty work ‘I’s.
“Stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught.” [II Thessalonians 2:15]
The steward must stand and use these thirty work ‘I’s—the “traditions” that it has been taught. We are going through a period of being persecuted by Influence C now, with the deaths of Frances Barrett and Christopher Frew, and the illness of Roger Cavanna. Influence C are saying that they are giving us thirty years to use these thirty work ‘I’s.

Philokalia
“If you set your foot on the second step of the ladder, then do as Lot did; do not turn back as his wife.” [The Philokalia, John of the Ladder]
If you are present, and you set your foot on the “second step”—the work ‘I’: “Prolong presence”—do not turn back to imagination like Lot’s wife, who looked back at the king of clubs.
“Wash your hands and pray to God continually.” [The Philokalia]
“Wash your hands” means purify the intellectual parts of centers so that they are not engaged in anything other than using the thirty work ‘I’s.
“When temptations start to speak in your mind, do not answer them but arise and pray.” [The Philokalia]
When imagination tries to interfere with presence, the steward must not answer the many ‘I’s, but rather use the thirty work ‘I’s. Do not leave space for imagination to enter.

Koran
“O Allah, allow me to come in with a truthful incoming, and to go forth with a truthful going forth.” [Mohammed]
In Egypt, the thirty work ‘I’s were known as the “truth.” A wall painting from the tomb of Nefertari shows Osiris standing upon the hieroglyph for “truth.” This means that the steward is standing upon the thirty work ‘I’s.
“Eat and drink until the white thread becomes distinct to you from the black thread of the dawn.” [The Koran]
The “white thread” refers to the thirty work ‘I’s; the “black thread” is the second state. One must distinguish between presence and sleep. Elsewhere, the Koran refers to the morning star as the “piercing star,” because it pierces the second state. The work ‘I’ “Be present” is the morning star; it is the dawn of consciousness.
“One’s fortune will not change except through prayer, and nothing will prolong your life except good deeds.” [Mohammed]
Here, “fortune” refers to the Wheel of Fortune tarot card (X). When you have “goats”—the ten thousand ‘I’s—circulating, the wheel is turning to the left, and the only way to reverse this is by employing the thirty work ‘I’s—the “good deeds.” Nothing will prolong your conscious life, except using these thirty work ‘I’s when consciousness starts to wane.

Sufis
“Pray that Allah may preserve you and cause you to continue and prolong your life.” [The Arabian Nights]
“Allah” means presence. Ibn Arabi said, “The name Allah means divine presence.” Prolong your conscious life through the thirty work ‘I’s.
“If you ask what the Word of the Presence is, we will reply, the word ‘Be.’” [Ibn Arabi]
This refers to the first work ‘I’: “Be.” Ibn Arabi reduced it to its simplest possible form. A saint said, “I would rather hear five words that I understand than ten thousand meaningless words.” The “meaningless words” are the ‘I’s unrelated to promoting presence. The five words of one syllable are, “Be,” “Hold,” “Now,” “Look,” and “Aim.”
“The mystic becomes accustomed to God’s presence—the brief flashes of lightning become a shining flame.” [Ibn Sina]
“The mystic becomes accustomed to God’s presence”—the steward becomes accustomed to the presence of the higher centers. “The brief flashes of lightning”—the thirty work ‘I’s—“become a shining flame”—prolonged presence. Moses is sometimes depicted with sparks around him, sustaining the flame of the higher centers.

"Crouching Tiger" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, October 27, 2008:
112 Dragon

The research ‘octave’ was in a way typical of my experience in the fellowship. On the one hand, I really enjoyed the opportunity to connect with so many valuable Sufi texts – I must have spent almost £1,000 of my own money on buying the books. They helped me deepen my sense of my own Work.

My frustration started to build initially when I saw that only very short sentences were required for RB’s meetings. These usually very simple sentences were ‘keyed’ in a paint-by-numbers kind of way that held no appeal for the deeper emotions and thoughts that I was experiencing during my research. Longer quotes, or ones that did not ‘fit’ exactly, were frowned upon….

I later found out that most researchers did word searches based on the topic, rather than read through the books as I was doing. This increased the feeling of shallowness about the entire process.

So the opportunity to increase my own understanding was a very invigorating one, just like many of the ‘tasks’ we were set in the fellowship. The problem came with end product, with the final use/misuse. And as I say, this was typical of my experience. There could be tremendous emotional ‘highs’ and experiences of presence, then someone would come along and ask you to be in a photo with RB – cost £50-100…

Once I bought a flimsy booklet printed on fancy paper about the 30 ‘imperishable work I’s’ only about a dozen or so pages – cost £45. I began to feel that the highs were deliberately created to loosen you up for the concrete, monetary demands. So in a way my own Work and energy were being siphoned off and actually used against me!

And let’s get something straight about the Work I’s. There were first 6, then 8, then 14 before it was discovered that 30 was the magic number! Some of these ‘imperishable thoughts’ were also a real stretch: ‘Read (with presence)’!!!! The think-tank was really struggling to make up the numbers there…

So I wouldn’t describe the research experience as being the main reason for my leaving, but it did show me how the fellowship worked.

How were you drawn to the Blog, having not been in the fellowship?

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