You may have contacted me personally, caught up to me from my writing in your page guestbook (or somewhere else), or merely followed the "about cults" link on the first page of this site. These "cult info" pages originally were "semi-private" pages to which only known friends were *invited* by me.
I decided to link these pages here as the information might give some insight and more understanding to those puzzled by cult activities and how people are enchanted by them, sometimes to their death. Following receiving the news of "Heaven's Gate" suicides in 1997, interest in cult activities has increased (remembering Jonestown and Waco incidents as well).
[I hasten to mention that reminding people of Jonestown and Waco does *NOT* mean that I believe FOF* to be headed for similar ends! However, the cult phenomena regarding devotion of members, with diminished ability for critical thinking, is very similar. A cult is a cult, is a cult. *FOF=Fellowship of Friends, you can read about on these linked pages. Thank you.]
I ask that readers here be prudent in passing around the new URL to friends, or anyone IN a cult whom you think would be helped by this, and not publish it in newsgroups. Thank you very much.
Please read my current remarks with an "even tone of voice," as I am not presenting a "harrangue" against the Fellowship of Friends. I'm just stating facts about it, and showing some correspondence, about which I am familiar by knowing the persons who wrote it. Otherwise, I write from personal experience of FOF at the time. (Yes, I have current knowledge about FOF from people who have told me about it from the inside -- who shall remain nameless for obvious reasons.)
It is my intent to show how I understand the cult phenomenon in the Fellowship of Friends, and how it is everybody's "fault", not just a small committee plotting against the members. At the same time, I cannot "blame" anyone for being "taken in" by the contrived atmosphere, induced by the group leader, Robert Burton, who is, basically, *not* the person he presents himself to be. This is not unusual in these kinds of groups, if one studies them.
Check out this book!
I realize nothing is sacred on the web, and I don't want to bother with passwords and such, and yet I also did not plan to publicy "advertise" this as a place to pick up gossip about the Fellowship of Friends. These pages are not motivated by gossip, nor retaliation, nor for personal aggrandizement. These are intended to be informational, educational, and hopefully helpful, especially to relatives and friends currently enamored of FOF, and whom at any time may lose the group they 'love' so much -- by overnight becoming an "undesirable" (should they disobey the teacher, become extremely physically ill, or become delinquent with financial donations!).
[If interested in more basics of the Fourth Way, please see the 4thway FAQ. Back button on browser or link at bottom of page brings you back here.]
In April 1998, some FOF members who refused to move east of the FOF property in Northern California (up in the hills), were either being excommunicated from the group or under threat of removal! The Teacher had "prophesied" that California would fall in the ocean April 12 at 11:00 a.m. Oh, excuse me, that was the first date obtained by the teacher some years ago from a mailbox number he saw on Highway 1 on a drive to Big Sur, California. The last big news was that if California did not fall by July 1, 1998, the teacher would recind a "sex exercise" (abstinence before marriage) and allow members to "self regulate that area." (As California remains attached, it is now 1999, we do not know if the old "sex task" has been recinded.) ;-)
The teacher already had commented that people who do not move from the part of California that will fall "are not worth saving."]
As we all know now, Califonia did NOT fall in the ocean, and Burton went out of town for a while, saying "Higher forces humiliated me," and something about making him humble. People nod and look as if they understand that. There is no question that the idea was flakey in the beginning. I will greatly appreciate your valuation and respect for my request that you not "advertise" this site except privately among former (or current, if you dare) members of the Fellowship of Friends and other friends who may have serious interest in cult-type activities. What is posted here is my personal opinion from personal experience, my understanding, and what close friends on the "inside" have told me.
You may also wish to bookmark this page and go see this site about FOF, and has detailed examinations of a variety of areas and activities. There you also will find FOF Journals, in the public domain, which are very revealing.
This page also may be interesting for you:
[Visiting linked sites, please use browser "back" button to come back to this page, or bookmark ahead of time! Thanks!]
Well, enough of this preamble, as you have scaled some barrier or other to get this far, or dropped in out of curiosity, you might as well get what you came to see. (smile) You are most welcome to ask any questions which may arise from reading these formerly privately linked pages.
|The works of Peter Ouspensky (left) and George Gurdjieff (right) are of great value to people who grasp the ideas of what is known as The Fourth Way. People who view these pages about the Fellowship of Friends will understand more from a "work" point of view, than from a "gossip" point of view. Please try to bring your highest valuation for the basic ideas with you here.|
Click on URL and get your own starter home page!
(ignnore date you may see here other than Oct. 3.2001)