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, June 24, 2020

Conscious Evolution Institute

Conscious Evolution Institute Fourth Way school lineage
enneagram with terms and symbols
[ed. - According to their website, the Conscious Evolution Institute was founded June 17, 2020 at South Lake Tahoe, California. It is among numerous Fourth Way groups whose lineages trace through Robert Earl Burton's Fellowship of Friends. On June 24th, the Institute hosted a meetup titled, "Talks on Conscious Evolution as practiced by Gurdjieff, Ouspensky, & Collin." Interestingly, Lake Tahoe was one of the earliest "centers" to appear in Burton's "school." The enneagram pictured features terms and symbols familiar to Fellowship members, past and present, and the Institute's domain. From their "About" page:]
"Our fundamental idea shall be that man as we know him is not a completed being; that nature develops him only up to a certain point and then leaves him, to develop further, by his own efforts and devices, or to live and die such as he was born, or to degenerate and lose capacity for development." P.D. Ouspensky

"The purpose of our group is to discuss how to use the Fourth Way System in a practical manner to develop oneself in everyday life.

"The focus of our work includes:

"Self-Remembering: How to achieve a state of presence in everyday life (e.g. being present while washing the dishes or while doing one's job)

"The psychology of conscious evolution

"The study of Gurdjieff's enneagram (a) The ray of creation (b) Using the enneagram as a map and guide to higher understanding"

[ed. - See also: Harmonious Developments, a new Fourth Way School and Harmonious Developments - Conscious Evolution.]

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