Revelations of "Brotherly Love" Newsletter

"Brotherly Love" was the name of this A5 size monthly newsletter published by the Philadelphia community of Divine Light Mission in 1974-76. These copies provide a window into the activities of a DLM community during that period. Nearly all include the excerpts of speeches Guru Maharaj Ji (Prem Rawat) had made interspersed with images (of very poor quality) of him, much inspirational satsang from premies, the day to day organisational details required such as meeting schedules and addresses and announcement of upcoming events and positive explanations for shocks such as 16 year old guru marrying a woman 10 years older and catastrophes such as the "Holy Family" changing into evildoers and denouncing and disowning their youngest member.

Brotherly Love: May 1974Brotherly Love newsletters

Brotherly Love: September 1974Brotherly Love newsletters
  • A Community Council This editorial while claiming to discuss the wonderful growth in consciousness amongst Philadelphia premies during August 1974 actually reveals the failure of current attempts to inspire the Philadelphia premies to do service as obtaining a warehouse did not produce the expected increase.
  • World Welfare Association Report While this article is upbeat it actually reveals that in 1974 from January to September a maximum of 1,000 premies (roughly 10% of the North American premies committed enough to attend major festivals) had doesn at least 1 event of social service despite the guru's agya. Rennie Davis chose 2 main target groups for WWA to focus on, drug addicts and prisoners unerringly choosing the two groups with the greatest recidivism.
  • RAINBOW FOOD CO-OP can no longer maintain a full time manager and requires volunteers
  • Third World Prachar is doing it's bit to proselytise the billions of third world non-premies by giving away clothes and having a skating rink party and grooving with drug addicts.
  • Extracts from Guru Maharaj Ji's Satsang at the Denver Hilton, 17 July 1974 dealing with AGYA
  • An excerpt from London Premies Newsletter reveals that many English premies have taken up smoking, drinking and taking drugs (against the guru's agya) since Guru Puja thereby revealing it was something of a flop and warns premies to the dangers of the subtlety of the MIND
  • A Sincere Request from Mahatma Jagdeo renowned devotee of Prem Rawat's and devoted paedophile for premies to attend satsang and hopefully leave their children unattended
  • Local News, Satsang Directory, Shri Hans Productions Advertisment and Classified Ads
  • Prem Rawat on dope. The guru advises do as I say, not as I do. He also gives weight loss tips and advises that people still realised Knowledge before the earth was created when there was no pot. Man, was he stoned or what?
  • Good Photo of Guru Maharaj Ji's flabby jowls

Brotherly Love: October 1974Brotherly Love newsletters

Brotherly Love: November 1974Brotherly Love newsletters

Brotherly Love: April 1975Brotherly Love newsletters

Brotherly Love: May 1975Brotherly Love newsletters

Brotherly Love: June 1975Brotherly Love newsletters

Brotherly Love newsletters Brotherly Love: July 1975

Brotherly Love newsletters Brotherly Love: August 1975

Unfortunately no more Phildelphia DLM newsletters for 1975 have become available to me as of mid 2012. For the next 3 months DLM continued in much the same way and 10,000 premies came to the Hans Jayanti festival in November. We have the January 1976 Brotherly Love which unfortunately was printed too early and too far from the center of DLM activities (Denver) to give any hint that DLM was about to implode. It's possible, however, that the lack of available 1976 Brotherly Loves is some evidence for that implosion which can be seen in the Divine Times national DLM monthly magazine beginning in December 1975.

Brotherly Love newsletters Brotherly Love: January 1976

Brotherly Love newslettersBrotherly Love: November 1976

Examination of these newsletters of the Philadelphia Divine Light Mission community in 1974-76 sheds light on some of the insoluble problems the New Religious Movement faced despite the apparent requirements of all DLM publications that everything related to their Master and His Knowledge is perfect except for themselves which were being perfected. It was acceptable to discuss past errors as long as they were compared to current improvements.

The major problems facing Prem Rawat and the DLM administrators in 1974-5 were:

  1. the fall in numbers of new converts
  2. the failure of aspirants who were "revealed Knowledge" to be impressed enough with the results to accept the belief system and become involved in Divine Light Mission activities (satsang, service, meditation and darshan) and thereby keep the religion and it's finances and Rawat's wealth growing. Until this time continual growth had been the basis of DLM's financial planning and the Mission managed to stay solvent because the number of supporting members had increased so rapidly and a few of them had donated large sums of money, usually inheritances
  3. keeping current members from drifting away, teaching them the appropriate attitudes and way of life and socialising them into it and keeping them inspired enough to attend meetings and donate their voluntary labour and money at the levels Prem Rawat considered appropriate
  4. the unrealistic expectations of the Spiritual Leader himself and the attempts by his followers to put these into practice
  5. his appropriation of the majority of the Divine Light Mission cash flow for his own personal use
  6. the need to show all of Rawat's actions in a positive light because he was considered to be divine
  7. the impossibility of disagreeing with anything he said as he was considered to be divine.

In Philadelphia steps were taken take meet these problems:

    • The calls to make 1975 the year of prachar and the community organisers' attempts to set up the required structures and methods to implement this number one priority agya.
    • The attempts to gather details of the "lost sheep" and to organise outreach to them to convince them of the importance of Guru Maharaj Ji and His Knowledge and their missing out of the blissful benfits of involvement and return them to the fold
    • The premies were commanded to organise "communities" to provide regular satsang meetings, opportunities for non-ashram premies to do service
    • There were constant propaganda about the glory of Guru Maharaj Ji, every reference to Rawat was glowingly positive
    • Unfortunately
    • A question and answer session with Rawat condemning marijuana smoking
    • Rawat had declared 1975 the Year of Prachar (ie recruitment) in a New year Proclamation even though in 1974 there had be only a third of the number of people initiated that there had been over the prior three years.
    • Rawat had ordered the creation of the Divine United Organisation at the beginning of 1973 to
    • Rawat had ordered the creation of the World Welfare Association under Rennie Davis in January 1974 and ordered his followers to involve themselves in social service programs.
    • There were constant calls for donations
    • Fund-raising events were regularly organised
    • AMP (The Active Membership Program) which encouraged tithing as the appopriate service for householders was regularly emphasised. The financial return for a three month period printed in the April 1975 newsletter shows the very low financial donations from the community members.
    • A positive spin on the guru's being disowned and deposed by his mother
    • No more 'satsang' by the "Holy Family" or news of their activities were printed after the May 1974 edition
    • AMP (The Active Membership Program) which encouraged tithing as the appopriate service for householders was regularly emphasised. The financial return for a three month period printed in the April 1975 newsletter shows the very low financial donations from the community members.
    • The Philadelphia community was able to colect enough capital to buy a house to use as an ashram after local wealthy community pressure forced them out of the earlier ashram. This shows the lack of financial committment amongst Rawat's followers as this was the only premie community in the USA who were able to do this or, at least, the only house purchase for an ashram publicised DLM publications.
  • Rawat's satsangs ie his mostly impromptu speeches (all the newsletters contain long excerpts from his speeches) in which he teaches his doctrines (link here to Rattsy's complaints) and in which he continually berates his followers lack of committment.
  • The ongoing attempts to organise the community to provide regular access to satsang meetings, opportunities to do service via community projects through DUO, WWA, League of Volunteers, etc (there was even a 3rd World Prachar Project) and inspiration from the more committed members.