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.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Asaf Braverman introduces the Fellowship of Friends "Online School"

[ed. - Welcome to The Fellowship of Friends' latest makeover. "Be.: Weekly Video Tutorials on the Be. Pyramid" is a recruiting tool targeting the naive and gullible. Be.Ware. 

Asaf Braverman (who here assumes the role of teacher and role model) has for twenty years been Robert Burton's devoted companion and assistant. On the subject of ancient spiritual traditions, Braverman speaks with an air of authority, while remaining oblivious to the nature of the mind-control cult that lured him to its ranks.

Complying with Burton's wishes, he is reported to have entered a "marriage of convenience" to gain American citizenship. When he later married a young Fellowship bride, chosen for him by Burton, he was apparently still legally married to his "green card spouse." It seems Braverman, officially a bigamist, then ran afoul of both American and Israeli immigration authorities and was waylaid in Italy for a couple years while his case was resolved. He was eventually permitted re-entry into the U.S. His is but one example among many in which the Fellowship of Friends "church" willfully and blatantly violates the law in order to fulfill Burton's personal wishes and desires.]
(Click on Asaf to begin your journey...)

"The Be. Pyramid instructs those seeking to develop higher consciousness by revisiting ancient teachings from a Fourth Way perspective." (
[ed. - For more on the narcissism that characterizes both Burton and Braverman, see The Classic Narcissist. Below, "ton2u" posts the 1999 video "Mind Control Made Easy". Though the production might appear far-fetched, the Fellowship of Friends has exhibited most characteristics described in the video, even a prominent "church leader" who is reported to have said he would kill if Robert Burton asked him to do so.]

"ton2u" wrote on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, May 2, 2015:
re: braverman’s “polished schtick” – I listened to / looked at the video link – the bullshit gauge was pegging out, dissecting particular contradictions was impossible… (thanks whalerider).
“Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive”
A more general concern is that he’s attempting to spread this disease… it starts in the video as a kind of verbal shell game which – I know from “personal first hand experience” – is intended to turn into a long con. From Wikipedia:
In Confessions of a Confidence Man, Edward H. Smith lists the “six definite steps or stages of growth in every finely balanced and well-conceived confidence game."
"One follows the other with absolute precision. In some games one or more of these acts, to use a theatrical comparison, may be dropped out, but where that happens the game is not a model one. The reference to the stage is apt, for the fine con game has its introduction, development, climax, dénouement and close, just like any good play. And this is not the only analogy to the drama, for the scenes are often as carefully set; the background is always a vital factor. In the colorful and mirthful language of the bunko man, all these parts of the game have their special names. I give them with their definitions:
Foundation Work
The preparations, which are made before the scheme is put in motion, including the elaboration of the plan, the employment of assistants, and so forth.
The manner of getting in touch with the victim—often most elaborately and carefully prepared. (in my time it was a bookmarker in a book – the online “school” is a new and potentially more ‘effective’ vector).
Rousing and sustaining the interest of the victim, introducing the scheme to him, rousing his greed, showing him the chance of profit, and filling him with so much anticipation and cupidity that his judgment is warped and his caution thrown away.”
(“Greed” and “profit” in the case of the FOF might have to do with dangling a ‘promise’ of more ‘consciousness’ and the imagined benefits thereof – or it might have to do with seeing and desiring a piece of the ‘opulent’ lifestyle and ‘material amenities’ associated with a “conscious being,” the ring leader, who’s just another petty, malignant narcissist)."
"ton2u" added:
136 re: “just another… malignant narcissist” and “a kind of verbal shell game” – “Beneath all this he is shallow, ignorant, improvising, and fearful of being exposed as deceitful. The narcissist is a conjurer of verbosity, using sleight of mouth rather than sleight of hand.”
"ton2u" posted on the Fellowship of Friends Discussion blog, May 2, 2015:
[ed. - Fellowship of Friends member John Walz attempts to lure and possibly recruit  unsuspecting participants of the ostensibly non-Fellowship-affiliated Facebook Public Group, The 4th Way - Gurdjieff - Ouspensky.] John Walz wrote on Facebook, May 21, 2015:
Hello Friends, below is a link to website that contains an introductory video for a new online Fourth Way community called . It is an experiment in taking an online discussion forum about the Fourth Way to a new level. We have a one year curriculum worked out. Each class is 10-15 minute video on a Fourth Way topic. Each topic will have a specific exercise. This will be followed by a week of online discussion followed by a planned and moderated group chat session of one hour. There is also planned a once per month Skype or video chat session. We are interested in getting feedback from people with experience in the Fourth Way to evaluate the video. We do plan to charge a minimal fee for the online "school", so if this message is considered "advertising" I certainly will understand and please take it down. As I said, I welcome your observations [ed. - ...and donations].
[ed. -  Among Robert Burton's sycophants, Girard Haven preceded Asaf Braverman, and built a model for the younger disciples to follow. See also this discussion on Cassiopaea Forum.]


  1. "Braverman speaks with an air of authority, while remaining oblivious to [his affiliation]."
    Spot on; as a matter of fact, Asaf Braverman is the Dean of the Council of the Fellowship of Friends since 2013 (that means signing visa petitions on behalf the Church, managing part of the budget, etc). All contributors and translators on his website are current Fellowship members, although the benefits of his websites are kept for him; for example, a skype meeting with him costs $100:, and they feature a single ad to his wife's photography business, ansleybraverman . com

  2. Note that Asaf updated his pricing:
    Now it's $50 per month!