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.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Conscious Teacher's Credentials

Fellowship of Friends cult leader and dandy, Robert Earl Burton (R. E. Burton)
Fellowship of Friends dandy
Robert Earl Burton
From the Living Presence website:
Robert [Burton] lives at Apollo [in Oregon House, CA], together with about six hundred members of the Fellowship, and teaches at many events each week. He also travels regularly, encouraging students to join him as he follows traces left by schools around the world.

How to describe a conscious teacher? His only true credentials are his own presence and his effect upon his students. He does what no one else will do or can do—teaching the most unpopular of all truths: that our illusory sense of “I” must die before presence can be born. He is the living reminder that it is possible to awaken, and that presence means humility, acceptance, and conscious love.

[ed. - By his own definition, no follower of Burton can verify that he is "conscious" (whatever that may be.) He has proclaimed himself the only "conscious being" and instructs that "the lower cannot see the higher," thus his acolytes must take this "credential" on faith. As for judging by the "effect upon his students," an estimated 15,000 have fled his teaching, many in penury resulting from the financial sacrifice demanded of this "teacher". According to the latest count we have, current membership numbers roughly 1,500 worldwide. Burton has warned his followers that it would be better they were not born than face the fate that awaits any who leave his "school".]

"Panorea" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, April 1, 2011:

Thank you qwertyuiop [blogger],

A week ago I watched parts of dvds with Robert Burton with my counselor. Almost three years out of the cult and I felt ready to face the deceiver… with the help of a professional. The hour I have with the counselor was extended to 2,5 as it became clear we needed to watch the tricks of the magician. My reaction was smoother that I had expected. The “impressions”, the music ok. Burton talks gibberish. He moves his hands and counts and interrupts and there is method in his madness. If you have not studied the fourth way and Robert’s codes nothing makes sense. The people around him appear fascinated and unhappy. His looks unstable and possessed. I could see part of all this when I was in the cult but I was blaming myself, my self will and my “instinctive centre” for the perceptions. My counselor called the other day to say that he was quite affected by the experience. He has worked and still works with people who had been in a cult but the Fellowship seems to be quite refined in its methods of deceit. Robert is a charismatic charlatan and there are many people who cannot protect their boundaries and are after an authority to tell them what to do. There are people who are hurt, who are after power over others so they can feel real; spiritual seekers who are after salvation and a remedy against death, and some others who have forgotten about the whole spiritual thing but have invested both in material as well as in social life within the doors of the Fellowship castle.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Fellowship of Friends registers ""


If you are a current Fellowship of Friends member and arrived here while searching for the Propylaia homepage, please do not consider this a "mistake." Rather, view it as Influence C's wish that you spend some time exploring these pages, learning more about the Fellowship's history, including many things you probably were not told. Long ago, Ames Gilbert, formerly a Fellowship member for 16-1/2 years, began to recognize the depth of Robert Burton's depravity and the abuses taking place within Burton's inner circle. He could no longer remain silent and confronted Burton and Fellowship leaders. See: The Ames Gilbert Letter.

Propylaia - Robert Earl Burton's Fellowship of Friends cult member portal
"Propylaia" Fellowship of Friends member portal

[ed. - Presently, the domain is forwarded to the Fellowship's member portal (shown above). Expires 2018.]

"Ames Gilbert" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, October 10, 2015:
Hello to any seekers interested in finding out more about the Fellowship of Friends and the fraud Robert Earl Burton. Please think on the following:

Tens of thousands of people have passed through the organization in the last 44 years, and some of them were damaged, shattered for life, or even committed suicide. About 1500 or so, passive, obedient, compliant, and entranced remain. Some of them have been there for almost the entire time!

Although Burton has pronounced over the years that half a dozen would become ‘conscious’ (how the heck would he know?), most of even those recognized and marked by the self–described ‘conscious being’ have left as well. What does it say for the efficiency of Burton’s method that the culmination of all this effort and as much as $200 million in donations has produced one sorry specimen labeled ‘conscious’, that is to say, Girard Haven. The guy who recommends that followers obey Burton ‘like a dog’. The one whose idea of ‘verification’ is to take the insane Burton at his word, then desperately look for any evidence to support it. The one who has never spoken out about Burton’s abuses and rapes, or the way he has lived like an emperor at the expense of his followers decade after decade. Who has not shown not the slightest sign of independent thought or action after 42 years on the leash— this is the sole product of Burton’s “school”, which is advertised as the one and only way on earth to help one develop ‘consciousness’?
Do you really want to spend a lifetime (just a down payment, according to Burton) giving your sweat, effort, sanity and treasure to charlatans like Burton or Asaf Braverman, and their ilk? Please, do yourself a favor and look elsewhere, take our word that there is nothing there of value to any decent, thoughtful person.

"qwertyuiop" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, May 29, 2011:

Yes, I want Burton to be held accountable, but mainly I just want more people to learn more about him. Just a rhetorical question, but when has MORE information and more knowledge about Burton helped to solidify his standing with his followers? The only way he’s able to keep people in the group is to withhold information, hide it, conceal it, distort it.

Ever notice there’s not a page on Burton’s Cult websites that reads something like the following?
“Learn more about Robert Burton and the Fellowships of Friends!”
“Read what former members are saying!”
“How Burton Uses Sexual Encounters to Enlighten his Followers!”
“Why Huge Teaching Payments are Necessary for Awakening!”
“Why Angels Only Communicate with Us and not with You!”
You don’t see such pages because “learning less” is the goal.