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Unregistered User
(8/17/01 12:25 pm)
I wonder if the great Satyananda is going to have another dream like he did last year. He spoke about how he knew what it was like to be a father because he had this dream in which he was walking with a little girl in one hand and a little boy in the other. Because of this dream, he had the intestinal fortitude to proclaim to the vast audience of parents that he was capable of giving them advise on child rearing. What a travesty! What arrogance! What a slap in the face to the real parents in the audience.

Hopefully, there will be suitable speakers there, this year, talking on subjects for which they are qualified. The people in attendance deserve no less.

A real parent
Unregistered User
(8/20/01 6:35 am)
Wow, I thought I was the only one who thought that talk was really weird. i noticed that in his dream everything was wonderful, and no one had to change any diapers or wash out anyone's mouth with soap or anything low like that. wonder what other kind of acvice they give.

Registered User
(1/4/02 9:27 pm)
like the Pope
Well, well, .... the Pope, the infallible spokeperson for God, used the same line: when questioned about how he, a total celibate, could give infallible advice to hundred of millions of married Catholics, he stated that a couple friend of his shared intimate detailes about married life with him which, together with the studies of other philosophers and the expressed will of God thru prayer and the Holy Spirit.....are the basis for his counseling....
oh, well, .... it is too sad even to continue....

Registered User
(5/14/02 12:16 pm)
It's been many years since I attended an SRF convocation. In fact, I probably attended more at the Biltmore, than the Boneventure. Since I married a non-devotee and had kids, it's just been too difficult to figure out the logistics, let alone the finances.

But every year I'm asked by friends if I'm going to convocation. And I start to wonder what's the big deal. When I think back to the times I did attend, it was enjoyable and inspirational, but in the end the inspiration only lasted a week or so and then it was back to life as usual. The memories I have, too, are a bit weird. There was something strange about the vibes. Not that they weren't pleasant, but that it was all just a little overwhelming and surreal for me. Especially at the Boneventure...since the Biltmore was smaller (and the crowds smaller) I had more of a grip on my own identity.

The feelings I had at convocation, were similar to the feelings I got when working at Mt. Washington. There was just something stifling about it all. I'm not making any judgement, understand, these are just my own personal experiences. Maybe I just never fit in. Perhaps it should have been an indication to me long ago that my own "path" needs to be something that comes more from within myself, rather than from an organization that "provides" me with everything. Well, better late than never, I suppose.

Registered User
(5/14/02 9:46 pm)
Re: convocation
Convocation is just a cult gathering. It is carefully crafted to be a worship session of the organization and prove to a large group that SRF is the way and the light and on the right road. Management totally stresses out over it and fears losing control and having something go wrong. Some monks are not allowed to speak and others severely criticized for saying things that might indicate that Management is not completely perfect and guided by divine beings.

What you felt was wrong was the manipulation of the whole thing. Read a book or website on how cults build and control followers. Right down the line you will see the SRF convocation.

What about the hero worship at the end? The president is brought in for a 15 minute talk after a main talk. Access to her is controlled by a small army of volunteers that guard the doors and hallways. Some are even armed. The fear is that what? Some devotee might come up and disturb this enlightened soul? It is pathetic.

Registered User
(5/14/02 9:47 pm)
Re: convocation
I have only attended one convocation, the 1970 one at the Biltmore and it was after that I decided to accept PY as my guru. It was so wonderful with Ma Durga leading 3 hour meditations in the Music Room where Master left this world; Yogacharya Oliver Black leading a sat-sang telling stories about Master (like having him materialize before him) and Yogacharya's deep joy and bubbling laughter I'll never forget.

Also I remember a beautiful talk that Mrinilini Mata gave on the guru/disciple relationship. She seemed to be glowing, so beautiful she appeared to me, obviously in love with Master, a serene highness. Also Daya Mata gave a wonderful talk on the Wednesday of the week, after her opening talk and before her closing talk. She was more accessible, and seemed more human, happy to be there with the devotee's, not that she's not now but there wasn't the amount of separation as there exists today.

And the people. I was a hippie in those days and dressed the part. Yet when I saw all those people dressed conservatively who were happy and loving I realized that I was the fool, as I certainly wasn't happy and had confused clothing and lifestyle with happiness. So many people went out of their way to be kind to me when it would have been easy to judge me for the way I was dressed and the length of my hair. That didn't seem to matter to these beautiful souls which was a large part of my accepting Master and starting to attend church, volunteer as an usher and becoming a 'regular.'

Today, so many years later I have grown disillusioned with SRF to the point that I don't think I'll ever attend another convocation. But just the one was enough for me to last a lifetime, the 50th anniversary of Master's coming to America to bring the kriya teachings.

Registered User
(5/16/02 6:15 am)
Re: convocation
Thank you, Lobo, for that wonderful recollection of the Golden Anniversary Convocation. That, too, was my first Convocation and your post caused me to go to the garage and pull out the Fall 1970 SRM (the Golden Anniversary issue). I remember two things especially. One was Daya Mata's closing talk--or, rather, what followed her closing talk. In the large Biltmore Bowl, after her talk, she seated herself somewhere in the middle of the audience of devotees in order to greet individually each devotee in attendance. I waited in a long, long line of devotees. Finally, I greeted Daya Mata. I was so nervous. I think she may have touched my head or hands, pronammed, whispered some soft words, I can't quite recall. Arranged on the dais for the closing banquet was the whole Board of Directors with Dennis Weaver seated to the right of Daya Mata. He spoke at length, kind of the star attraction. At the time, he may have had his TV show, McCloud. Not sure. The other outstanding memory: Swami Shyamananda, who was technically a Yogacharya at the time (he took his final vows later that year, 1970). He was the head of YSS in India and a true saint, in my opinion. Scheduled to give a talk one evening, he was instead engrossed in discussion with a group of devotees (myself included) out in the middle of the audience seating area. Oblivious to the time, he contined to enrapture us with a heart-piercing dialogue on how "heart" equals "He" plus "art." Finally, Br. Philip (now Ramananda) came to get him and with utmost deference informed Shyamananda that he was supposed to be delivering this talk from the podium, which he then proceeded to do. A quote of Shyamananda's I just found in another old SRM, on why he refused to take Sannyas vows in SRF until very near the end of his life (he died in 1971): "I see how easy it is to become spoiled by titles, especially in India where there is such reverence for anyone who wears the ochre cloth. Let me first work and prove myself; then, whatever God wills." Wow.

Registered User
(5/16/02 6:34 am)
Re: convocation
They were even encouraging mata worship way back then. Amazing that we westerners fell for that.

Too bad more of us didn't see it and recognize it for what it was. It might have saved a lot of people from hardship and allowed them to get involved in real organizations helping people in real need.

Shyamananda sounds wonderful! There were a few real great souls, real wonderful spirits. I believe Mokshananda was another one. SRF didn't make them but they were drawn to Master and helped more people find his wonderful teachings.

Edited by: crogman1 at: 5/16/02 6:36:48 am
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