Divine Times - December 1976 Volume 5, Number 11
Just looking at the growth that's happening around the world in this Mission, I feel that it's about time there was a more direct participation on my part than there has been in the past. I feel very positive about the Initiator Development Program coming up at the end of December, and I also feel it will give a great boost to propagation all around the world. … It's great to be able to come and see the enthusiasm of premies. Everything is slowly starting to come to a higher consciousness. I just pray it keeps on developing to a higher and higher and higher consciousness, to where the true motives of this organization can be fulfilled. So premies, it's really beautiful. I just wanted everybody to understand why we are here; we just cannot lose sight of that.
From 18 DUO communities and 21 centers around the country came an overwhelmingly positive response to a video questionnaire sent out by North American Operations in October this year. Most people felt that video is an inexpensive, versatile medium, with the average cost per showing running at $30, and as low as $10 or less within 17 communities. Overall, the communities would like to show videos more than once a month, and 28 favored videos of other North American communities' facilities and activities. Other than Maharaj Ji's satsang, the most requested video topic was satsang from the initiators.
Who knows why we or anyone else would travel such a distance on such short notice on the mere hope that Guru Maharaj Ji might make and appearance at a program held in his honor? The list of similar occasions at which Maharaj Ji has not appeared is lengthy, and regardless of the number of times calls were made to different sources in L.A., to friends, to the DUO office, there was absolutely no guarantee that Maharaj Ji would attend. … Doing eighty, passing a double-semi, I shed a confirming tear: "Maharaj Ji, I love you very much." Through all the changes, spiritual self-righteousness, pseudo-religious babbling and corporate bungling, there is something that's remained constant.
The community has changed since I first came to the ashram for dinner and a few days later did my first faltering pranam. The ashram was the main focus of the community. The premie houses, novitiate house, and even the aspirant house were all within walking distance of the ashram and all were on ashram schedules. After spending some time in this environment I was transferred to Denver, and when I came back nine months later, I felt as though I had returned to the Twilight Zone. Gone was the strong ashram, gone were the crowds at satsang and the Knowledge enthusiasts.
Then, on October 25, 1974, good news: A telegram arrived from Denver saying that initiator Rajeshwar would be arriving tomorrow. … With this visit, 90 people were initiated and 150 gathered for a public program in a local temple.
On May 18, 1976, Ira Woods flew in from Fiji at midnight. He spent the first night in Kuala Lumpur, then left the next morning for Telak Anson. The following two evenings Ira attended public programs of over 200 people, and on the third evening two films were shown to an audience of 400. After these programs, Ira spent most of his time with the fifty aspirants and finally initiated eight people - five Chinese and three Indians.
Maharaj Ji explained how we all embarked on the path of Knowledge with the right spirit, but that in the course of creating an organization we became more involved in the structure than in our real purpose. Now he feels that a positive change is under way, and that we are regaining a proper focus on our original goal.
Play Your Aces Guru Maharaj Ji's Satsang in Los Angeles, California November 9, 1976
Now what is the difference? Why are so many premies confused? Well, that's a good question. It's a very good question, because really there is no answer to it. Why are premies confused? I don't think half the premies are confused, but somehow they want to think that they're confused, or they think that getting confused is in vogue, so they want to be confused.
When we first came to Knowledge, what did we have? What did we really have? We had Guru Maharaj Ji, who could offer us Knowledge, on one hand; and we had ourselves, with tons of ego, and tons and tons of mind, on the other hand. And while everything crazy was happening around us, we were desperate for reality, wanting to experience something that could really show us where the darkness was and where the light was.
In Prem Nagar there were a lot of premies who would come down to one corner of my veranda, and they would be stoned
Do you feel that a lot of premies are unhappy? If so, why do you think they are?
I don't know the reason. I've been noticing a lot in satsang that people are really into their unhappiness. It's not very inspiring to me. I suppose it's the confusion that Maharaj Ji talks about.
I don't want to have this Knowledge and have people turn away from it. Therefore, I have to be happy. That's me helping Maharaj Ji as much as I can. Whatever service you have, all that is really nothing unless you're feeling happy.