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Showing posts from May 17, 2020

17. MY SPIRITUAL JOURNEY, PART 4 (the dialogues)

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THE OPPORTUNITY
The introduction and interview led to a series of weekend discussions in Malibu with Krishnamurti and a small group of 10-15 mostly younger people in the winter of 1968-69.  

I arrived, along with the others, at Mary Zimbalist's Malibu home shortly before 4 in the afternoon on a clear winter Saturday afternoon.  We were invited into the living room to sit on the floor around a low table, with an empty space between the fireplace opposite us.
Among those that were participating was a striking, tall, very thin man with a broad smile and who lived nearby along Malibu beach.  He turned out to be Peter Fonda who had just finished Easy Rider and chuckled that he had made the blockbuster on an outrageously tiny budget.  He was accompanied by a fellow who stood out among the rest of us more conventionally dressed by always wearing overalls to the discussions. 

There wasn't enough room to accommodate everyone on the floor near the table so those who preferred could sit behi…

16. MY SPIRITUAL JOURNEY, PART 3 (the introduction)

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THE 'HUMILIATION'
In the fall of 1968, the opportunity to meet Krishnamurti came about through a friendship I had developed with Alan Hooker who ran The Ranch House Restaurant in Ojai and who was an associate of Krishnamurti.  

Earlier in the year, I had seen a notice posted on a campus bulletin board that a series of discussions would be held on the teachings of Krishnamurti led by Alan in a conference room in the University Center.

Up to that point, I had been studying Krishnamurti's teachings on my own...reading what I could find.  I was excited to learn that a group was forming to discuss what had become my passion.  Through those interactions, I developed my friendship with Alan.

Alan arranged for me to have an interview with Krishnamurti, in Malibu, where Krishnamurti was living.

A short time before this arranged interview I had attended a public talk by Krishnamurti at Claremont Colleges in Southern California.   Before the talk began, I noticed a man with slick-backed h…

15. MY SPIRITUAL JOURNEY, PART 2 (Krishnamurti and Ojai)

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KRISHNAMURTI AND OJAI
...the first experience

At the suggestion of my art professor, Robert Chuey, I visited Ojai in May 1966 to hear Krishnamurti speak in the Oak Grove.  

When I got to Meiners Oaks where the talks were held on the west edge of the Ojai Valley, it was love at first sight.  It was one of the most beautiful, inviting places I had ever seen.  It was at once idyllic and magic, and the climate in May has a clear, caressing warmth.  



There was a big grassy field below the Oak Grove where countless cars were parking.  It was on the grounds of Happy Valley School.  The school was started in the 1940s by Krishnamurti, in association with Aldous Huxley and others, to educate children in a non-competitive, cooperative atmosphere and to avoid the conventional conditioning that turns individuals into automatons. The grounds had originally been the site of the 'Star Camp' where Krishnamurti had given talks since the late 1920s.  


The photo above shows Happy Valley School in the…

14. MY SPIRITUAL JOURNEY, PART 1 (the beginnings)

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MY EARLY YEARS
When I was growing up, my religious experience consisted of intermittently attending a liberal protestant church with my family...which, apart from the music, the big organ, the stained-glass windows, and the fragrant flowers in the sanctuary, mostly left me cold and feeling alien.   I occasionally went to Sunday school, which I wasn't keen on. 

My true spiritual experience came from camping with my family and being in nature...and that had a big impact on my life in every way imaginable.  My parents treated nature as a sanctuary, a place of worship...and that seemed natural to me.

When I walk alone through the natural environment, in silence, I can feel its pulsing spirit.  I feel a deep communion.

The outdoors never fails to nourish me and give me a sense of well-being.  I love everything about it...the fresh smell of the soil and foliage, the sounds of the birds or a gurgling stream, the roar of the ocean or the falls, the friendly heat of the summer foothills, a…