Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: RUN_FOREST_RUN ()
Date: March 05, 2024 05:32AM


That's great stuff. On the topic of SIF, and I've posted this here before, the Living Force band, made by early SIF devotees, led by Harvey Mann, back in the 70s did stuff like this:

He was a fantastic guitar player and is still a current follower of Butler. Many of his kids I think splintered out of the cult and found their paths, but many are still hardcore followers.

He was also responsible for Butler's album, Mantra Electric, which devotees were technically not allowed to listen to—something about it being made for newcomers (i.e., propaganda tapes and recruitment tactics).

Again, these songs/music are special because of the amazingly skilled musicians, not the mantras or personality worship they promote. They are great pieces of skill and talent and could have been singing about anything, really, and still had the emotional depth and catchy tunes anyone can vibe to.

Mantra Electric was the one and only major musical effort of Butler's and he was the only thing that sucked on those tapes. If it was;t for the skilled musicians the whole thing would have sounded like chopped liver.

One of the ideologies of bhakti-ism is the idea of "dovetailing" out talents or otherwise mundane persuits in the service of krishna. A type of "karma yoga". And so it's not uncommon to hear amazing music, see crazy cool art come out fo the western hare krishna scene. But often to lackluster, corny effect. I once hear an entire album of Beatles song's done pitch perfect by some ISKCON devotees. SOOOOOOOOOO FFFFFUUUUUUUCCCCKKKIING CORNY! OMG.


Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: RUN_FOREST_RUN ()
Date: March 05, 2024 05:35AM

More about Living Force band []

Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: RUN_FOREST_RUN ()
Date: March 05, 2024 05:38AM

I guess you can get the whole album on Apple still: []

Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: XKRISHNA ()
Date: March 05, 2024 06:14AM

Wow, this is really good. Thx for pointing me this way, FORREST.


Tell me please: was Living Force exclusively made up of former ISKCON devotees, or were they with Butler already, so to speak, when he joined ISKCON in 1970? Were they already involved with ISKCON in 1970, or what? See what I mean? How did Living Force come to leave ISKCON and go with Chris Butler?

And how DID Butler establish a following in New Zealand, of all places? He started out in Hawaii as SAI, right?

Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: XKRISHNA ()
Date: March 05, 2024 06:38AM

FORREST, I just thought of something.

Prabhupada passed away in late 1977. My understanding was that Chris Butler founded SIF in 1978, after Prabhupada passed away. But when you look at SIF's Wikipedia entry, it says that SIF was founded in April of 1977. Prabhupada was still alive in April of 1977, so how could this be? And how could Living Force, associated with Butler and SIF, have made an album that was released in 1977? SIF, according to my understanding, SIF did not exist yet in 1977. So how could this all be? See what I mean? How could Butler have started SIF while Prabhupada was still living, see?

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2024 06:41AM by XKRISHNA.

Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: RUN_FOREST_RUN ()
Date: March 05, 2024 06:42AM

Don't quote me on it, but to my knowledge Harvey Mann and Eddie Hanson was with Butelr before being swept into ISKCON with Butler. Not sure if the other band mates were all practicing devotees or a mix of yoga-hippies who were just good session muscisions. I can't imagine anyone would be on board singing the lyrics they sang if they were not pretty hardcore devotees. Much has been written on this forum about them as well so maybe run a search on that.

Mann was and still is a complete Butler devotee. I don't know if Eddie Hanson is still alive or in the cult, but his family is for sure. The Hanson name is big in the cult as is the Mann name. Sai Hanson, his son, has as his big claim to fame using the speedboat in and around Butlers beach house in Hawaii as a way to ward off people swimming close to Butler's house wherein he inadvertently hit and killed a diver because of his aggressive boat tactics. They were known for speeding the boat up and down the waters there to ward off people swimming close to Butler's home. After the accident, Sai Hansen disappeared. Tapes of the accident have 2 adult males, Sai Hansen and what sounds like Siddha Bellord, who is Wai Lana (AKA Vaishnava Dasi, chris Butlers wife), heard panicking as they call police. Upon arriving, only Sai Hansen and a young girl are on the boat. Siddha Das has not really been seen since. A lot about the accident is also written on this forum. Suffice it to say, it was a total scandal and cover up and proved once again how arrogant and above the law they think they are.

So yeah, these are all old-ass Butler devotee families that have deep roots going back. But all their krishna-fuckery aside, they were super amazing musicians.

Butler had a huge following in New Zealand and as an ISKCON devotee was sent there by Prabhupada to purchase property or start a temple or something like that. Some scandal also ensued with that and there are letters from Prabhupda very unhappy and displeased with Butler about basically mishandling or stealing property or something to that effect.

I think many Kiwis make their way to Hawaii and in the 60s/70s, many travelers were passing through places like Hawaii and running into Butler/Sai to get into meditation, etc. I dunno, I guess he built a following. His main following is between USA (mostly California/Arizona), Hawaii, Philiappines, New Zealand/Australia and in recent (last 25 years or so) years places like Poland. But most of his followers seemed to always be from those regions. Not sure entirely why. Huge following in the Philippines and mostly ex-catholics disgruntled with catholocism, but many Butler temples in the PI still have jesus on the alter or really push Jesus in their krishna preaching.

Sorry, don't feel like verifying any of the above, it's just what I recall off the top of my head. A lot of it is on this forum, though.


Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: XKRISHNA ()
Date: March 05, 2024 06:56AM

Thank you for this. But why does the SIF wiki page say that SIF was founded while PRabhupada was still living, please?

Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: RUN_FOREST_RUN ()
Date: March 05, 2024 07:05AM

Well, SIF is the master of disinformation and they have a ton of "fake" accounts saying all sorts of random shit about how they were founded.

Here is the basic observation I have made:

1. Science of Identity foundation was a name that Butler came up with a good bit later in his guru-ship. Probably more like closer to the early 80s.

2. His mission is also called "Chaitanya Mission" and in all honestly that was what we called many of his centers when I was growing up. Science of Identity was used more formally and in publications/Audio/Video tapes they made. So perhaps some of his early videos on public access were needing to have a foundation to produce them etc, so they may have registered the name early on to do business under a more formal church/organization name.

3. Butler had a HUGE following before he went into ISKCON. So it is possible that some of the formal organization names were registered before being a krishna devotee. Before that he still preached and believed in Gita and hindu scriptures, but more along the lines of Ashtanga Yoga and Kundalin and earlier pre-puranic yogic paths.

4. Many of his followers who joined ISKCON also became disciples of Bhaktivedanta. Some stayed on the fringes and waited to see what their "master sai" would do. What was his next move? And it's also entirely possible that some of those "fringe" followers maintained aspects of Butler's assorted hippie temples, and so there may have been a lot of crossover of devotees who maintained an allegiance to Butler, those that followed him, those that stayed on the fringes (and made fun rock music, for example), and others that totally left and maybe rejoined later etc. Point is there was a ton of cross-polination in terms of how Butler went into and exited the ISKCON dynamic. In many ways it was as if he was never fully in and many Prabhupada devotees wold complain about that. But Bhaktivednata always let it slide until some issues arose about money and properties (I think that was in New Zealand). Basically a kind of Indian Giving (nor PC, I know) wherein Butler and "his clan" of devotees were going off and doing their own thing not quite in line with what the swami or ISKCON leaders wanted. Now remember, this was before smartphones and the Internet, so someone like Butler could pretty much be using an ISKCON temple he was "opening" for Prabhupada as a center for his worship and preaching to "his" followers, and it'd be months before anyone really caught wind or was the wiser.

So, to sum it up, I don't really see a major issue with the dates/years of certain "butler" devotees making music, versus being in ISKCON or segwaying out of ISKCON etc. It was all happening in assorted ways all the time probably between 1970-1979. We forget, but back then, people were not sending emails, making calls, or tracking much. Not to mention, everyone was caught up in a wave of fascination and a high from their new-found Indian religion. It was all a blur.

In all likelihood, Mann had made the music early in his interest in Krishna consciousness and likely first being introduced to it by street devotees and subsequently joining with Butler. You have to understand also that Butler always represented the more "chill" side of the devotees. His followers never really shaved their heads or changed how they dressed etc. So he appealed to "regular folk" who still were attached to their normal life, but wanted a little of that spicy "India" religion mixed in for good measure. The SIF cult is still very much like that. You'd be hard pressed to really feel like you are in a "gaudiya" center when visiting their centers.

Buter came to ISKCON offering his followers to Bhaktivedanta. Within the ISKCON structure, those followers STILL very much followed and adored Butler. And when he left, they left with him, as well as several who were not with him before but were in ISKCON before his arrival but left when Prabhupada died cuz they did not want to deal with the GBC etc.

So yeah. it's all in a blender. But there are many who know the story cent for cent and much has been written on this forum about it.


Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: RUN_FOREST_RUN ()
Date: March 05, 2024 07:13AM

When SIF says that they were "founded" in 1977 it is likely referring to Butlers first small center in Kauai when he was still Sai. So "founding", I think is being used more loosely as in "it all started back in 1977, when...", rather than someone actually going down to the local Municipality and registering an official "church". Does that make sense? Kind of like:

Nike was founded in 1964 as Blue Ribbon Sports by Phil Knight and Bill Bowerman, his former track-and-field coach at the University of Oregon. The company was renamed Nike, Inc., in 1971.

So I think specific dates are more approximations in this regard as referring to some early version/seed of the idea of SIF.

That's how I understand it.

Re: Chris Butler, Jagad Guru, Science of Identity
Posted by: XKRISHNA ()
Date: March 05, 2024 07:49AM

Thank you for all this, FORREST. I will study it out.

And by the way: my friend, the man I tripped with yesterday, knew nothing of Chris Butler and SIF until I told him about it. He was rather surprised to learn that there's this ISKCON spinoff cult in Hawaii which is led by this guy named Chris Butler, and he was totally ignorant of all that history. The reason it came up (SIF and Butler, I mean) in our conversation was because I told him what you wrote about how Swami so-and-so ought to be first in line to try to donate a kidney to him. He agreed wholeheartedly. But please. We all know that that is not going to happen.

ISKCON never did shit for him, or for his mom. In fairness, they paid for her funeral and cremation, and they made sure her ashes got sent to India, but they never did shit for her while she was living. Either one of them.

Abraham Maslow was right: we human beings need love like we need oxygen. Without it, we die.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2024 07:51AM by XKRISHNA.

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