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Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: rescate ()
Date: March 18, 2004 06:28AM

Appreciate any information regarding Krishna group in Hawaii. Teacher is called Prapad, formerly Chris Butler. Thanks.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/16/2008 01:56AM by rrmoderator.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Dervish ()
Date: March 18, 2004 03:53PM

I find your post very interesting. Here is a re-print of information about them that I've posted before. I've personally experienced SIF (the group of Chris Butler, AKA Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda Paramahamsa, AKA "Prabhupad"), and I believe them to be even more cultic than ISKCON, although very secretive.


Very little is known about SIF, and I've never seen an ex-member before (and I have met many who are or were Krishna devotees). Let me tell you what I know. What I know is what I've seen, what others have told me, and my feelings and opinions.

I used to live in Hawaii, and I loved going to their health food store Down to Earth (DTE). They have hot vegetarian food there, and very good selection of organic produce. As I was going to their store more and more, however, I would get a distant, "creepy" feeling. I felt that everyone working there was "interconnected" somehow.

SIF Hawaii uses 3 primary methods of contact which some I met have told me about:

1) DTE employees - If you work at Down to Earth, chances are most of your co-workers are followers of Chris Butler. They will supposedly make attempts to recruit you. I've heard the pay is very good there, and that even cult members get paid well. I have some feeling that somehow the money they get paid gets cycled back to SIF, but this is entirely my speculation. If you order an application, it will say you can't attempt to "pick up other employees", and has some sort of restrictions on social interaction.

2) Lifestyle Center - This is the name of the "center" attached to the store. They offer a lot of vegetarian and cooking seminars (this is where your Prabhu das probably wanted you to work). I believe they also try to sneak their brand of meditation in there.

3) Flirtation - SIF has a lot of young people, and many appear attractive. I've spoken to others who went to the store, and some felt there was some odd flirtation going on (happened to me too), although outside contact is forbidden. I've heard they find some kind of delicate balance though, to tantilize young people, yet keep their OWN young people in check (almost all of them live with senior cult members who watch like a hawk).

I don't know what else to say. I know from very reliable sources that their temple is filled with pictures of Chris Butler, and that during their weekly programs on the beach of Bellow's Air Force Base at Waimanelo, senior members close to Butler wear surgical masks, so there could be a Howard Hughs theme going, as well. He is quite paranoid, and does not come out in public. He also has been known to often shout profanities during lectures, something that he doesn't do during his television show "Jagad Guru Speaks". They also emphasize Christianity, and somehow try to equate their brand of worshipping Krishna with some new brand of new age interfaith Christianity.

Science of Identity Foundation (SIF) - Very secretive group that owns a successful chain of health food stores in Hawaii (Rick Ross has an article achived where the health food store fired several employees who weren't Krishna devotees). Deep, severe indoctrination techniques used (I base this on commentary from longtime observers as well as my own distant observation and feelings/opinion toward their strongly apparent rigidity), but since SIF is very low key, very few know about it. One family that has maintained a high position in SIF, the Gabbards, have 3 family members in 3 elected official jobs in Hawaii. They spent an incredible amount (in one case, 4 times the amount their biggest opponents spent) on campaigning. They are also obsessed with denouncing homosexuality. Leader is Chris Butler aka "Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda Paramahamsa".

--

Here is an article about Gabbard's dubious activities:

[www.kaleo.org]

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Hope ()
Date: March 18, 2004 04:51PM

I took meditation "classes" at the NJ School of Meditation for a few months a couple years ago. I'm trying to locate the pamphlets I was given after several weeks of doing chant meditation. After several sessions, the teacher started talking about spiritual beliefs, the Bagavad Gita, threw in a little bit about homosexuality being sinful. This was weird because I'm a straight female and never brought up the subject. Anyway - it was mentioned once. Then I got the pamphlets which were transcripts of Chris Bulters lectures. Also got a video tape of him. About the same time, the med teacher started talking about a community in Hawaii. He started suggesting I just leave my life behind to move there. That's when I bolted.

I cannot remember if the group was called Science of Identity or Science of the Mind. I'm still looking for the brochures. Googling it has not helped.

There used to be some links for Chris Butler, but I was only able to find this one. There were several pages of hits, but most were for another person by the same name. If you Google Chris Butler, guru, perhaps you can wade through the pages and find the info you need. Here is a link which you might find interesting ...
[www.the-hamster.com]

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Dervish ()
Date: March 18, 2004 06:07PM

Hey Hope, good to hear from you again

You wont find much information about Butler or Science of Identity Foundation (SIF) on the internet, they are low profile, ever since the loss of Tusta Krsna das, their public relations spokesman to cancer (late 1999), as well as some incident where IGVS (now BHAKTI) another ISKCON-like Krishna cult recruited their manager of the huge SIF center in the Phillipines, SIF has gone heavily undercover. Almost no information can be attained directly, but typically through those who claim to observe things.

The brochures by Butler are only sparsely available on the internet. Sometimes they are available again, and sometimes the websites go down. Here is Butler's treatise on homosexuality.

[www.geocities.com]

It may seem like a side issue to them, but in actuality, they seem to worship anti-homosexuality campaigns tenfold more than they attempt to worship Krishna. There are various rumors that one or more of Gabbard sons are gay, or Gabbard himself, or even Chris Butler himself. It would certainly fit the axiom that those who attack gays the most are hiding an irrepressable part of themselves.

With the failure of Butler's alleged follower Rick Reed to attain public office, he has supposedly "entrusted" the business of taking over Hawaii's political scene to the Gabbard family. Mike is a city councilman, his daughter is also a city councilperson of another district, and his wife is on the board of education after spending 4 times more money than all their opponents.

Utilyzing the recent Hawaiian distrust of the democratic party, and Hawaii's mainly Christian population's backlash toward homosexual tolerance, Butler is allegedly guiding the Gabbards to take over as many Hawaiian political offices as they can. Taking Hawaii's vulnerability and voter gullability into account, I wouldn't be surprised if Hawaii became another Clearwater Florida, guided by Chris Butler.

Apparently, M. Gabbard wants to run for US Representitive, challenging a weak encumbant. Four years ago, Gabbard attempted to run for the US Senate, but was stopped by the relatively high standards of income checks for candidates of such federal offices. Hopefully, those same standards exist for US Representitive, but I believe Gabbard has become more skilled at concealment, and utilyzing "the good ole boys' network", which is just as powerful among Hawaiian Republicans as it is among the long powerful Democratic party.

(NOTE: By posting that internet link above, I am in no way endorsing SIF or Butler's teachings. I find them to be a sick mockery of Vaishnavism)

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: genkiguy ()
Date: March 18, 2004 08:11PM

This guy is involved with cult awareness in Hawaii,
He might be able to help you out,

[www.letusreason.org]

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Hope ()
Date: March 18, 2004 08:25PM

I found the video tape of Chris Butler preaching to his devotees absolutely disgusting. He was so arrogant, condescending, judgemental, even anti-Christian, that I found it hard to believe this quiet, seemingly kind man who was my meditation teacher would listen to a word he said (little did I know at the time about mind control). When the camera panned the audience, there was my teacher, obviously many years younger, meaning he had been a devotee for quite a while.

The teacher wasn't living an ascetic's life ,but he wasn't well off. Chris Butler, however, lives in a mansion while his devotees work for nothing in their communities. For several weeks, I was the only person in the class, and he was paying to rent the room we used, and not asking for money. Nice set of double standards.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Dervish ()
Date: March 18, 2004 08:44PM

Several years ago, I was waiting at a bus stop right across the street of their main store near UH Manoa, and I saw this young man chanting on beads, and he was putting away an apron from the DTE health food store. So we started to talk, and he told me he used to live in New Jersey, until he met some disciple(s) of Chris Butler in NJ, then he came to Hawaii, and has been working in DTE since. He told me he was begging for initiation, and begging for the opportunity to do "service" in Jagad Guru's mansion in Lanikai. He was gushing ON AND ON about things like how Jagad Guru had the ability to leave his body at will. (These sort of yogic powers are actually deemed unimportant in the Gaudiya Vaishnava sampradaya that Butler is supposedly from). He offered to take me to this farm on the big island of Hawaii. All the time I had talked to him, he was wide eyed, and couldn't stop talking about Chris Butler.

I was never so freaked out in my life, and I've been to ISKCON programs, a Pentecostal Mass, a Scientology booth at a Sci Fi convention (morbid curiousity for 5 seconds), and had Jehovah's Witnesses coming to my house every week for a month.

I felt sorry for the young man. I hope that he eventually realized the predicament he was in.

--

EDIT: They supposedly used to own [www.planetveggie.com] , which for some time was the primiere website for vegetarians (but they didn't reveal a spiritual affiliation). Somebody went on the forums, and made a neutral remark toward Chris Butler, and 2 weeks later, the website was taken down. Strange, is it not?

--

EDIT 2: The youth are allegedly kept under a tight leash, looked after by senior members (mostly female members) which are supposedly euphamistically called "house mothers". Once they get older and are properly indoctrinated, they are said to be given more freedom, and as time goes by, perhaps they get a young person under their charge.

I have also gotten reports that over the years the older members have taken in foster children for extra income, and for indoctrination (from as early as the early 1980's). Unfortunately I only know of a couple of isolated cases, so I can't swear by this, it requires investigation, and I don't have the resources or desire to carry it out.

--

EDIT 3: I remember a time where I conversed with a good friend of mine who was in contact with somebody involved in local Hawaii politics, and opposed to the Gabbard political machine. Apparently, this person was put on their blacklist for some time, and the person was followed by members of the SIF.

A presumed member of SIF later called them on the telephone and said they had information about some scandals, but the person did not bite because it felt very suspicious, like a setup.

One time, my friend was on a now defunct vegetarian message board of theirs, and one member coyly asked him why he used a sanskrit email address on his profile. He recognized her username. Days before, she too had a sanskrit name in her email on her profile page, but it was changed before this message was sent to him. She was asking him "Are you one of those funny robed "Hare Krishna" people I keep hearing about on the news?" Interesting question from a member of a group that encourages their people to chant Hare Krishna.

Sometimes they are said to appear to be a person or of a faith that they're not. Like when they preach on the streets using bibles. Or when some of their young men were said to have dressed up in women's clothing, acting over the top "gay" (like the Wung Fu movie) to protest homosexual marriage in a satirical manner.

Anyways, this is it. There might be more, but I don't even want to *try* to remember anything else.

EDIT 4: One Hare Krishna couple with two children got divorced years and years ago (maybe 1990's but not sure). The wife supposedly took both children to Hawaii and vanished in the Caitanya Mission'ss vast interconnected commune network. The story is told this way; The father, despondent over not seeing his children for several years, wrote a letter to Chris Butler (Siddhaswarupananda) begging to see his children again. Butler replied with a hostile letter laden with obscenities.

EDIT 5: Here is an article that may be helpful:

[the.honoluluadvertiser.com]

[www.culteducation.com]

EDIT 6: Butler is also afraid of outsiders, apparently claiming that in the 1970's, members of ISKCON attempted to assassinate him. No strangers are allowed to meet Chris Butler AKA Siddhaswarupananda. All inquirers and new members must be carefully scrutinized by Butler's disciples (SIF members) before finally being allowed to see him.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Dervish ()
Date: August 18, 2004 06:13PM

(dormant website)

Here is a video of Butler bashing Christianity. Strong contradiction to their preaching efforts which are typically laced with Christianity and biblical references.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Dervish ()
Date: August 25, 2004 06:39PM

Somebody recently e-mailed me this essay regarding the Hawaii US Congressman election (Ed Case, Democrat incumbent, and Mike Gabbard, Republican challenger). I found it quite interesting. I can't lay claim to any of the points made, but I had a good time reading it.

----

Ed Case made a mistake.

His mistake was not his questioning Gabbard's religious affiliations. Rather, his mistake was to question Gabbard's affiliations to a non-profit organization (seemingly religious focused).

Two words; plausible deniability.

His direct question should have been; "Are you a disciple of Chris Butler, AKA Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda Paramahamsa, AKA Prabhupad?" or "did you take initiation in the Holy Names of Krishna (AKA "Harinama diksa" in sanskrit) from Chris Butler AKA (etc.)?" Of course, it's now too late to change it.

Hypothetically, you can deny affiliation to an organization/institution easily. And you can tell the truth in the process! Just say "I quit" to the receptionist. Heck, let's say you quit a religious corporation. You could do that, and still attend services. That's not a problem. As the Jehovah's Witnesses would say, it's "Jesus' law, versus Cesar's law". You couldn't even call it a lie.

On the other hand, it is taboo for a disciple of a guru in the Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition (the tradition which Jagad Guru claims affiliation) to deny one's guru. In some circles, it's even likened to when Peter denied affiliation with Jesus on Holy Thursday.

It's sort of laughable how Gabbard made light of Ed Case's question list, while simultaneously creating www.mikegabbardreligion.com to deny affiliation to SIF, while finding time and space to pay respects to Butler. Gabbard simultaneously calls Case's questioning ridiculous, while unwittingly giving credit to Case by purchasing a new domain and website to deny an organization which Gabbard makes claims the founder "helped inspire (him) to return to (his) Catholic roots and the fundamental teachings of Jesus Christ."

It's also been brought to this writer's attention, that the creator(s) of www.mikegabbard.info have been threatened with a lawsuit by SIF or Gabbard, for insinuating a connection between the two, and for copywrite infringement (presumably, for showing a clip of Butler's TV show "Jagad Guru Speaks" during which the Gabbards laugh at Butler's cynical remarks toward Christianity).

Anyone who knows Chris Butler even on a rudimentary level is aware that he has not appeared in public since the late 1970's, early 1980's. His sole link to the public is a television show. However, he will not appear "in the flesh".

Apparently, since his breakaway from the cultish Krishna organization ISKCON in 1977, Butler contends that members of ISKCON's managerial arm, "The GBC", have been conspiring assassinate him. Several seemingly impartial devotees from neither ISKCON nor SIF seemed to confirm that an attempt was made in the late 1970's. Since then, Butler has been laying low in Lanikai and Malibu. Even to this day, anyone who so much as wants a glimpse of Chris Butler in the flesh (they call it "Darshan"), must be screened carefully by Butler's disciples.

To avoid preceived violence against his person, and to avoid outside questionings of his doctrines, there are no outsiders at darshans and lectures. He detests ISKCON, and more recently, Hare Krishna cult Kingpin Narayana Maharaja's organization for canvassing the manager of Butler's Philippines temple in January 2000, Mahabhav das, who now resides in NM's main temple in India.

Therefore, I would believe that by Gabbard's appearance on Butler's television show, he is a full-fledged initiated disciple of Chris Butler. In the Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition, your guru comes first, family 2nd, friends 3rd, and constituents last. On mikegabbardreligion.com, all he did was deny affiliation to SIF, which, as stated at the beginning of this essay, is something very easy to do. Case's questions, as insightful as they were, unwittingly gave Gabbard a considerable amount of "wiggle room" in vaguely, yet truthfully, answering legitimate questions which constituents have a right to know in detail.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Dervish ()
Date: August 30, 2004 07:24AM


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