Apparently quite a big change is taking place in the EnlightenNext organization, and Cohen appears to be issuing an apology for past abuses.

See here.

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max miller said:

here it is

oh uups that was the wrong one .....

oh here it is :so special by the pretenders

yeah andrew just hit a lucky strike in lucknow in the middle of the 80´s : ))

well life can be a really wild thing can´t it just

what a bitch , even false gurus exist........... huuuhu who would have thought that ,hmm

hmm here some more wisdom on this by the greatest rocknroll troupe of all times

let it bleed they knew this already in 1968 or was it 69

goes to show there is just not that much new under the sun

and of course instead of ban the old devil its much wiser to have a little sympathy

now that would of course be something new

for the american "i am soo serious i hardly can walk" average do -gooder enlightment seeker , i guess hahaha

and then there is this treat, some more homegrown US wisdom

its alright i will get by

grateful dead


a little report :as usually after a bout half an hour listening to this grateful dead

i start feel a little....strange , kind of relaxed wuzzyness seems to unfold , i wonder what do these guys mix into their music again, electric cool aid acid was it or what ?? do you feel the same ,or is it just me : ))

and is this legal? listening ......
max miller said:

and then there is this treat, some more homegrown US wisdom

its alright i will get by

grateful dead

I think the "too" in "too forgiving" says it all. Nonetheless, I will say more:

We definitely need to be critically mindful of the many potential ways in which we unintentionally support bad behaviour in others and in ourselves. What a lot of folks act as if they forget is that their forms of non-support are often complete fantasy. We all tend to pretend that our personal "policy statements and conclusions" seldom have anything to do with situations in the world. Our attention too often remains trapped in superficial social layers that want to rapidly inspect, categorize and then positively or negatively assess our "support". This has the potential to lure us away from much subtler layers of support and non-support which are embedded in our actions, in our seemingly unrelated feelings, etc. As I was hinting at above, when we react to expensive suits or tallness as if it was significant we are empowering an entire system of support for behaviors which have shocking immoral results down-the-road and off-to-the-side.

Edwards comments are mostly contemporary common sense. Stage-development along multiple "lines" is a basic requirement in the understanding of the integral spiritual student and the integrative spiritual teacher. However that still leaves a lot of room for things which might easily set off alarm bells. The archaic patterns are not obviated by new patterns and they remain -- just as our organs do -- as vitally functional components within a more integrative context. There is also a tremendous possibility that certain subtle energetic functions and obscure transmission dynamics demand things which resemble primitive patterns.

While it is great for me to complain about all the different kinds of ways that people willingly mis-evaluate each other and reject the knowledge of simple human complexity that is found in everyone (including teachers and leaders of all kinds)... there still will and still should be places for people to go and make mistakes, experiment with their hearts and souls, etc. And that means a considerable gray area between the teachers of the kind we look forward to... and the teachers of the kind we fear are ancient and ongoing.

Layman, thank you for the kind and generous words. I nearly made an appearance at IL the other day to thank you for your comments about the "internalization of the performed presumption of status." It's a double whammy, isn't it -- not only the UR effects of income equality but the UL effects as well.

I also like your ideas about becoming aware of the symbolism of spiritual status and box-putting. There is a whole array of effects and maneuvers people employ to gain power (often subconsciously or semi-consciously, not necessarily intentionally) that we need to become aware of. Clothing, rhetorical tricks, myth-making, etc. Some of them exterior (like clothing), some interior (like virtue and vice).

I also like the distinction "participation with is not endorsement of," among others. I think it helps to see that as an amber artifact as well. Somehow the idea seems implicated with belonging needs, clique-making, and scapegoating.

Mary, great to hear from you! You know, I almost added your name up there, but it was just after my fifteen minutes of editing time had expired. I like your remarks about self-righteousness and humility. I began thinking along those lines after seeing this terrific documentary called The Weather Underground.

One of the radicals who had been in the New York group that had planned to set off a bomb at a dance at Fort Dix (before the bomb went off accidentally, destroying their Greenwich Village townhouse) talked about how righteousness is a dangerous position. He said something like, "You can do horrific things when you think you're in the right." And I think that feeling of righteousness probably accompanies some of these guru abuses and also how people can be abusive in decrying that abuse, as I've recently seen again in another discussion.

I like your point also about how even when you don't express those feelings it can poison social spaces. I think that's pretty profound and subtle. I think it keeps people from opening and sharing their heart a little, a subtle form of Adi Da's "avoiding relationship."

Ed, I think you make a good point when you say, "Another element required is proof over an extended period to demonstrate a change in behavior and attitude so that one earns forgiveness." If someone were up against the wall, one way to slide away would be a show of contrition. Criminals often say they're sorry after they've been apprehended and put before a judge. Also, just realizing one has done something wrong (cognition) may not be enough once their emotions kick in again. It takes a while for cognition at a certain level to translate into values and self-sense.

I think guru as second-face of God is definitely passe, but we can always have teachers and students, as in any field. But I think the important thing is flexibility, as Genpo Roshi once discussed. If you're teaching not-knowing, for example, it doesn't make sense always to adhere to the teacher's position. No one gets to play God all the time. They talked about criteria for cults and cult leaders in Spiritual Choices, and I think that might be a good one to add -- the cult leader thinks he is the leader or God in every situation. It also simply describes first-tier, especially Amber, leaders, but that sort of altitude (or ethic) is usually what we mean by "cult," isn't it.

And Max, good to hear from you as well. Care to share any more about your time with Poonja? I also know what you mean by feeling "wuzzy" after too much Grateful Dead. :) There was a group of Deadheads called the Spinners who apparently believed Jerry was God, or at least some kind of avatar. Apparently Jerry didn't like this, but I think his band mates might have teased him about it. Once I was at a concert where, in the beginning, Bob Weir said, "Hail Garcia!" And then he started salaaming Jerry. I thought it was kind of funny.

hail garcia : ))

why not .

yeah poonjaji : his main teaching was : there is no path to here


This new essay by a former Cohen student has been making the rounds on Facebook. 

The following is about what I cautioned, that his turn might be a ploy:

"It had also come to light that he had been instructed to do this by his organization's PR strategist as part of a more comprehensive campaign to refurbish his reputation."

And this description matches quite accurately a sociopathic personality:

"But I somehow continued to feel entranced, as if I'd been manipulated against my will into an alternate reality. I felt that I was in the presence of an individual with such tremendous willpower that I had to be constantly vigilant in order not to abandon the most basic premises of my own experience. Even more strangely, I suddenly had the profound intuition that he was utterly devoid of conscience, that he lacked any authentic ability to care for or about another human being. It was clear that his deluded agenda took absolute precedence over everything. He was perfectly singleminded."

1. Ahimsa

2. walk your talk

3. surround yourself with friends who will kick you in the ass when you fail at 2


Layman Pascal said:

7 Lessons have just popped into my very dubious mind:

1. There is a huge appetite for more trustworthy teachers of a particular kind.

2. Integralites need to get over both our positive and negative reactions to the symbolism of spiritual status.

3. We need groups that mobilized higher degrees of collective intelligence -- operating and deciding in ways that exceed the limitations of: individual leaders, mere consensus and predictable waves of reactivity.

4. We need to stay engaged with, critical of AND encouraging of the different parts within people.

5. We need to remember that participation with is not endorsement of. That is a notably "amber" sentiment.

6. We need to think in terms of the practical necessity of being allied with all sort of individuals and groups which are attractive to integrative souls -- without getting fixated on their unpleasant or disreputable parts. Every alliance is definitely going to involve people that are behaving in ways that we find upsetting. 

7. We need to get over the instinct to find other people to have been "dupes". 

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