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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: Eric Blair ()
Date: February 19, 2006 12:35PM

To be clear, I don't believe in any "gurus". Somebody once said that a sadhu should be considered guilty and forced to prove their innoncence.

This Butler thing seems very reminisecnt of communities of practioners of plural marriages who defy the modern day Mormon prohibition of the practice.

When I was a devotee, there was a community not far from us who had similarly removed themselves from the authority of the GBC and made their own way.

I guess my point is that in the whole scheme of things that the Krishnas and their offshoots are far more innocuous than are so many other groups out there. They have come a long way from the "Monkey on A Stick" days and while they are still a cult with all of the negative things that cults bring, they are not all together that dangerous.

After going through this thread again, I would agree that Butler and company should be monitered, but where else do you all want to go with this?

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: cuz ()
Date: February 20, 2006 07:50AM

I want to thank those trying to help my situation.

I have been doing some of my own googling. First I wanted to talk to some other people in Mr. Butlers group but could find absolutely nothing on line about him or his followers. I suppose they are not that big.

On the other hand I found hundreds of sites for ISKON and wrote questions on a few which were quickly answered. It seems to me those who think ISKOn is going down have not done much homework. They are very big in Europe at the moment and many other places around the world. One follower of a big guru in India was bragging his guru makes thousands of followers and it is not unusual for him to make the initiations into the cult with as many as 500 at a time. He already has more than twice the followers of his own guru who started the whole thing in the west.

So I do not think we can discard this group as going away or just dying out.

Concerning Mr. Butler and his group can anyone give information about a website etc. I want to know what I am dealing with.

As far as ignoring them (Butlers group), I would say that is a big mistake, on the contrary some one should be closely monitoring them, if that is possible.

As far as my cousin she already thinks I am the enemy so to turn that around I will need to know more about their philosophy and how they think. Thanks for the help Just Googling, please tell me more.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: just-googling ()
Date: February 21, 2006 02:43PM

Hi Cuz

Yes, you are right about Europe - especially in Eastern Europe the Hare Krishna is quite popular there now. I sometimes think that Eastern Europe is about 50 years behind the West, and as in the 1960s many young people were turning to meditation and eastern religion ... well it's just hitting the Eastern bloc now! As for India - well this has been the main religion there for thousands of years.

As for Chris Butler's group, yes, they are not so big but also very secretive and thus no web-site. The main centre seems to be still in Hawaii although there are many followers in the Philippines and some in Australia, New Zealand, and Poland. In fact, they got into a little war with the staunch Catholics in Poland that ended up in court - seems like religion always tends to create animosity and wars... The Chris Butler followers are also quite inimical towards the ISKON group and they are on the list of enemies (along with homosexuals, "impersonalists" etc).

As far as their philosophy, it is pretty much what we may know as "Hinduism" - they believe in one God as the supreme person but there are many incarnations and also many demi-gods. Every living being is a spirit soul that is transmigrating from one body to the next (reincarnation) and the way to put an end to this cycle of birth and death is to become a lover of God... They consider themselves to be real Christians in that Jesus also was teaching people to become lovers of God, and they also use Biblical scriptures as well as the Bhagavad-Gita... And yes, animals are considered to be "spirit-souls" and thus no killing of animals... The plants are also spirit souls but their consciousness is very much covered and these are set aside as food for human consumption...

Oh, by the way, what they call the "impersonalists" are those people who consider God to be an impersonal force or void... The Krishnas do not adhere to this philosophy at all and thus reject these people quite vehemently (Buddhists would be considered as "impersonalists").

If your cousin is interested in this group, it is quite possible that Hawaii will be the destination, and I think the group owns the biggest health food chain on the islands, and thus giving jobs to interested people.

You originally asked why I left the group, well a little red flag went up when Guru asked his followers to fast for six months because they were 5 minutes late delivering his breakfast (they were told the next day that they did not need to fast, however)... Another red flag: the followers turned the air-conditioning up to full blast in Guru's room, thinking that this is what he wanted, however Guru accused them of a conspiracy to kill him as the cold air was bad for him, etc. -- seemed like some kind of weird paranoia that did not really make sense -- as opening the window for 5 minutes would have brought the room back to normal temperature.

And sometimes it seemed like the paranoia was contagious - this is something to watch for as well.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: cuz ()
Date: February 23, 2006 07:23AM

Let me get this straight. Some one turned the A.C. on full blast thinking it would cool down the guru's room and as a result Mr. Butler accuses them of a conspiracy to kill him? This not only reeks of paranoia it reeks of insanity!!! For a person to even verbalize such a thing shows behavior completely out of control. It reminds me of a movie I saw about Jim Jones the cult leader. Six months fasting because a meal was late? That the followers were forced to fast for even one day over such a trivial thing is criminal in my opinion.

I have been looking into the Hare Krishna religion. I am am an agnostic and not a supporter of any religious denomination. Certainly abuse takes place in every religion regardless of sect, there are always a few bad apples. I do not see how the type of behavior mentioned in your last post is representative of any sane philosophy or religion.

How does the Krishna religion support such odd behavior or does it?

If the leader of a religious group can become so irrational in his behavior it makes me wonder what goes on in the rank and file. It also makes me wonder what goes on behind closed doors. It must be what all the secrecy is about.

It is a fact without the right medical treatment such paranoia usually becomes worse and worse, such persons usually become more and more irrational in their thoughts and behavior as time goes by and as they get older. I read the comparison to Howard Hughes but as I understand Mr. Hughes was detrimental to himself only. It is apparent that Mr. Butler is dangerous to those around him.

Just googling,
How long were you around the group. Did you notice the behavior of Mr. Butler becoming more irrational as time went by?
What other bizarre things did you see and hear not already mentioned on this thread?

BTW I have had correspondence with four different members of the Iskon group in different places. Out of four, only one had ever heard of Mr. Butler, so it appears his name is not that big within the main Hare Krishna religion. The one who did know about Mr. Butler said that his guru, the founder of Iskon was not very happy with Mr. Butler while he was within that organization. He said the guru of Iskon did not like him doing what-ever he wanted and considered him a 'renegade' but did not go as far as to excommunicate him. Of course according to this Iskon follower the people in Mr. Butlers group say just the opposite, that the head of Iskon was very happy with Butler. Considering Mr. Butlers animosity toward Iskon it seems completely illogical the leader of Iskon could have been very happy about it or given Mr.Butler encouragement to go on his own.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: just-googling ()
Date: February 25, 2006 08:05AM

Hi Cuz

You're wondering how can people tolerate such behavior as this - and the answer is that in the Vedic tradition the guru is the link to God and by pleasing the guru, you are pleasing to God, etc etc. Mr. Butler has given many lectures on many topics, and especially on how the person's material body is not the self and this world is not our true home, etc, etc, and I suppose the followers are so enamored by the philosophy that they can overlook such things as what amounts to no more than a "spoilt child syndrome." (By the way, original guru Bhaktivedanta Swami from India did not act like this and was able to attract more followers).

I was involved with the group for at least a decade and yes, things did seem to be getting more weird as time went by (to the point of eating toenails? - see previous posts!) - but I'm sure nothing to the extent of craziness of the Jim Jones cult or anthing like that. I cannot think off-hand of anything other than this, but then again I was never part of the "inner circle" who got to associate with the guru so much.

What you are dealing with here is people who are now seeing this world as a totally miserable place and there is only one way to get out of it - to follow the instructions of the guru, namely constantly chanting the name of God and not being attached to material enjoyment, etc etc. Especially when people first come into contact with the group there tends to be a period of fantaticism that can seem a bit anti-social. Hopefully people get past this stage and start to realize that surely God could not be so harsh, and start to mellow out a little.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: bonnie ()
Date: February 27, 2006 01:13AM

On the contrary, the devotees I was acquainted with did not seem to be convinced that this world was a miserable place at all. This world was seen as one of the "middle planets"; neither the best nor the worst.
They may have been seeking an eternity spent with Krishna, but their days were spent pursuing upward mobility and pleasurable experiences as well as "enlightenment". Many of them were involved in real estate investment. They were very preoccupied with interior decorating, personal appearance, even fashion.

They were quite proud of the artistic and "intellectual" achievements of their children, and even the kids understood the value of a dollar. Everyone was always looking for a new way to make a buck. Most of the families built or purchased better and better homes over the years that I knew them.

They also enjoyed themselves by participating in outdoor sports such as surfing and sailing. The people I knew were in close contact with their leader, and did not hide that fact.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: bonnie ()
Date: March 02, 2006 06:28AM

I read this letter from a former MOL member, and what she said about healing on a spiritual level resonated deeply with me.

I was never a true "cult member". I never was initiated, never met the guru, never gave my money to the organization.
In many ways, however, I was deeply attached to the devotees, the worship, and on some level, the philosophies of the group.The group was at the center of my thoughts, the center of my social life. They were the people I chose to worship with.

I felt a deep sense of betrayal when I found out about the deceptions and secrets of this group. I was left with an aversion to God and religion, and, once again, a shattering of my faith in my own powers of discernment.
I have been following a path similar to the one taken by the ex-moler, and hope to find a similar spiritual recovery.

Even those on the fringes get hurt. If these supposedly religious people had any real sense of the spiritual damage caused by the secrets and power plays within their groups, would they continue to act as they do?

[www.culteducation.com]

February, 2006 ?By a former member of the Miracle of Love
Quote

After I was out of MoL, I refused categorically to listen to any spiritual teachings whatsoever and any form of MoL meditation including any of their music chosen to induce feeling and "open you up" or better break down your defenses. When I needed to recollect myself I would just sit quietly in silence. I wanted to have all sorts of spiritual beliefs evaporated from my system.
I started to sing in a gospel choir, and my heart felt healing again. I went back to my mountain and walked alone to connect with my mountain spirit I know is in me.
I didn’t know then, this is the direction to go when you recover from cult. Steve Hassan described it magnificently in his books: look at who you were before the cult involvement, find your dreams again.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: just-googling ()
Date: March 02, 2006 02:21PM

Quote
bonnie
Everyone was always looking for a new way to make a buck. Most of the families built or purchased better and better homes over the years that I knew them.

.

Hi Bonnie

this is certainly not in keeping with what is written in their scriptures, where I remember reading that the holy men would sleep under a different tree each night so as not to get attached to making a home in this world.

But then again they have another philosophy that if it is done for Krishna, it's okay. One time guru said that if your job was a policeman, for example, you could become a policeman for Krishna. I never could really understand what that would entail and how it would be different from just another ordinary cop... Maybe it would mean busting people who didn't chant their prescribed number of rounds???

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: mardukin ()
Date: March 14, 2006 05:15AM

Something is not being discussed; ones own personal interpretation/application of the teachings.
It is an extremly hard task to think for yourself, believe me.
I too was interested in the whole Krishna cult and still am to a degree.
The first session of my interest was to become fanatic and follow every little teaching as if it were meant for me.
But the problem with such an undertaking is that I was not suited for such a burdon.
No sex, no over-eating, no over indulging(whatever that means), no sleep, no life.
This is the life of a monk and might have been a wonderfully detached position if I were on that frequency but I wasn't.
Soon my dealings and relationships become cold and I begain to see the world in a way that created a very sheltered and dull existance, one that I could 'manage'.

From [b:8bfe2f64ac]my[/b:8bfe2f64ac] understanding of this existance we are here to learn something, something very specific and self-soul oriented.
I asked myself 'how am I to learn from this life if I falsely impose some exturnal practice that allows me to justify my pretentious desires, allows me to say that I am holy.'

"The teaching is this", "the teaching is that", hear-say, my-say, your-say, where is the realization?

In my dealings with anything, the second you begin to think that you understand the teachings, that you understand anything then the biggest illusion has set in.
Yes, there is understanding, a personal understanding that can be applyed to your life but can't be enforced upon others.

But really what I am trying to say is, or quote is, ' hate the sin not the sinner.'
Right???
Hold one to their actions but also allow room for that person or entity to grow.
We can't be so judgemental just to please our drives for over-simplification.
It's the same game with different names.

Srila Prabhupada, the original teacher for the 'Krishna's' describes the functions of the mind, 'accepting and rejecting.'
So we enter the krishna cult accepting everything and leave rejecting every thing?????
There is not connection with self, it is all just mental activity.

So back to the first line.
The emphasis in any dealing in life is to rely on your own self judgement, don't accpet anything with out inspecting it for yourself.
Of course this takes energy, disciple and time but it will save some hating of those who you have let take advantage of you.

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Krishna group in Hawaii
Posted by: just-googling ()
Date: March 28, 2006 01:36AM

Mardukin wrote:

"Soon my dealings and relationships become cold and I begain to see the world in a way that created a very sheltered and dull existance, one that I could 'manage'."

This seems to be a common scenario with people who adopt this meditation / religious process. I can certainly attest that I was also like this when first interested in the religion. There are examples of parents abandoning their children to boarding schools when only 5 years old and not caring how their children were being treated!

Another common scenario is that people become very gung-ho at the beginning when they are first introduced to this religion, but over the years they find that they cannot adhere to the strict celebacy rules, and they cannot live up to their expectations of becoming a "pure devotee" - thus leading to what may be labeled as depressive symptoms or even suicidal ideation...

On another note, Chris Butler once said that Allah and Jehovah are also names of God and that by chanting the names of God one could become purified... However, we see every day that some people in Iraq or Afghanistan are always chanting their mantra "Alla Akbar" but at the same time are killing others for the sake of "Allah"... The question remains, why are these people not becoming purified by chanting the names of God???

In Afghanistan they were firing RPGs into the girls school !!! (Because I suppose Allah said in the Koran that girls should not receive an education???) The evidence is certainly mounting that religion can make people do weird things.

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