Issue #21

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Issue 21 – January 1, 1972 to March 31, 1972


This issue takes place only in California, so there is necessarily a great deal of activity about the legal case against KWINC. But these onerous activities do not dominate Mary’s memoirs. Krishnaji is active giving public talks in Santa Monica, holding group discussions (including education discussions in Ojai and thereby laying the groundwork for the school the KFA would eventually establish there), and engaging in many recorded discussions. A series of such recordings were done in San Diego with experts on religion, and they were videotaped.

Yet, probably of most note in this issue for people interested in Krishnaji is his frequent telling Mary (often only very briefly) about what was happening in his inner life.


The Memoirs of Mary Zimbalist: Issue 21

Mary: I believe we begin today on January first, 1972.

Scott: Yes, that’s right.

M: Well, the scene is Malibu, and on January the first, ‘it was a clear and beautiful day. Krishnaji watched the Rose Parade on television, saying “These people are crazy.”’ [S laughs.] ‘Later, he watched the start of the Rose Bowl football game.’ [S chuckles.] ‘I went over next door to see my friends, the Dunnes. When I came back, Krishnaji had had his nap, and then we watched the end of the Rose Bowl.’

The next day was ‘another beautiful day, and Krishnaji talked into the Nagra about the first of his reminiscences. He talked about the discovery of the boy in the early years. We walked on the beach in the late afternoon. And at night there were gale winds and the house shook with it.’

On January third, ‘the winds had quieted in the morning but began again at lunchtime. The Dunnes had part of their roof ripped off.’ Such were the winds.

The fourth of January, ‘there was news from my brother about my father, and Dr. Joseph Pollock, who is the son-in-law of the late Louis Zalk, and his son came to tea with Krishnaji.’ Does that name mean anything to you?

S: Nothing whatsoever.

M: The Zalk house is the one above the KFA building on Besant Road, at the top of the hill. It’s now where there’s the Ojai Retreat. Zalk was married to…how did it go? His wife was Rosalind’s sister, Erma, and their daughter married Dr. Joseph Pollock. He’s a, I think, medical doctor. They came for tea. The reason I’m talking about it at all is because he was on the Happy Valley School Board, and he was making overtures to KFA or to Krishnaji to somehow heal the breach or have some connection between Happy Valley School and KFA. He said he was not pro-Rosalind, and he wanted to hear what Krishnaji’s position was about the Happy Valley School. Well, Krishnaji didn’t want anything to do with it. It’s developed later, what Krishnaji said.

S: But, just give us a brief history of this. The Happy Valley property was bought by Annie Besant to start a school.

M: Yes, that’s correct. But the school wasn’t started until the ’40s, during the war.

S: And as with everything else, Rosalind and Rajagopal eventually had everything in their names.

M: Yes, and it ceased to have anything to do with Krishnaji, although they used his name.

Now, Pollock and his wife were friends of Evelyne Blau[1], and Evelyne thought we could get back the Happy Valley land, and don’t forget, in these days, we had no place for a school, but there were intentions to start a school. And if we could have gotten the land back…

S: That could’ve been a good place for the school.

M: Yes. Hence, one listened to what Dr. Pollock had to say.

The fifth of January, ‘Sidney Field telephoned that his brother John had died suddenly the day before. Krishnaji spoke to him and asked him to come to lunch the next day. In the afternoon, Krishnaji and I went to a James Bond movie, Diamonds are Forever, in Hollywood.’ And it says here, ‘terrible movie.’ [S laughs.] And it also says that ‘Krishnaji shouted a bit and didn’t sleep well at night.’ He used to call it “shouting,” you know, he woke up with…

S: I know, but why don’t you explain what that is. I think you did earlier, but it is worth repeating.

M: Well, I heard it my first time way back in Rishi Valley, when we were all about to go to, I think, Bangalore, and I got up early. It was dark, and Frances McCann and I were right under Krishnaji’s bedroom. I heard this cry and it sounded like distress. I didn’t know what to do, so I went to Alain Naudé, and said something’s wrong with Krishnaji, and I described it. He said, “Oh, no, no. Pay no attention, it happens all the time; Krishnaji doesn’t like to talk about it, and it doesn’t mean a thing.” This was the first inkling I had of, really, part of the process, in a way.

S: Mm, hm.

M: Well, Krishnaji called it “shouting,” and often he woke himself up by doing it.

S: Yes.

M: The next day, Thursday the sixth, ‘Sidney Field came for lunch, and there was talk between Krishnaji and Sidney, and I was present, about life after death.’

On January seventh, ‘Krishnaji did a Nagra dictation about Rajagopal.’

On the ninth, ‘we drove to Ojai and met the Lilliefelts, Ruth Tettemer, and Albion Patterson to record a discourse on the Nagra based on their questions to him on the concept of the World Teacher. We lunched there afterward, went for a walk, and then drove home.’

The next day, ‘Isabel and Enrique Biascoechea flew here from Puerto Rico. Theo met them at the airport and brought them to Malibu for tea, then took them onto Ojai, where they’re staying with the Lilliefelts.’ You’ll recall that it was decided by the lawyers that we ought to do a deposition of Biascoechea[2].

On Wednesday the twelfth, ‘Krishnaji and I went to look at a Volkswagen in the afternoon.’ I think that was a car I was getting for Filomena, but I’m not quite sure.

On January thirteenth, the Lilliefelts took the Biascoecheas to see Leipziger the lawyer, and then they all came back to Malibu for lunch. After that, the Lilliefelts left and the Biascoecheas stayed here in the guest room. At 4 p.m., Dr. Pollock came to see Krishnaji again, and reported that the Happy Valley trustees want nothing to do with Krishnamurti.’ [S chuckles.] ‘But he got Krishnaji to say that if they reconsidered, he and KFA members would talk to them. I was upset that Krishnaji was appearing to woo them.’ I was. I didn’t want anything to do with them. Dreadful people.

S: Mm, hm.

M: ‘The Biascoecheas told Krishnaji and me that Erna was on the verge of exhaustion from so much work, and I tried to get Krishnaji to see what adding a Happy Valley School controversy on top of all the other would mean to her. But, it is still in his mind,’ it says. ‘I drove the Biascoecheas to Leipziger’s office. Erna and Theo were there, too. Enrique gave a deposition with Terry Christensen representing Rajagopal. It went poorly.’

What happened was that years before, Biascoechea was donating some money to KWINC, and he wanted to know more about the finances of KWINC.

Rajagopal refused to give that information, and said that if there were any difficulty about it, he would reveal that Krishnaji had a relationship with Rosalind. And this so shocked Biascoechea, not the relationship, but the fact that Rajagopal would blackmail him. And poor Biascoechea was concealing this for the rest of his life, including through the deposition. So, this wretched Terry Christensen lawyer got him to lie, that Rajagopal had never done anything wrong about money.

S: Mm, hm.

M: So, that was what that was all about.

S: So he, in order to protect Krishnaji, Biascoechea said that Rajagopal had never done anything wrong with money, because he, Biascoechea, was afraid that Rajagopal was just going to bring all this out.

M: Yes.

S: Oh, poor man.

M: Yes, he was a sweet old man who adored Krishnaji.

S: Oh, poor fellow.

M: He was put in this awful position. [Sigh.]

S: And Krishnaji didn’t know anything about this, presumably?

M: Ah, no. No! Krishnaji wasn’t there.

S: And Biascoechea hadn’t talked with Krishnaji about all this?

M: No. No, of course not.

S: Right.

M: He wouldn’t have been so indiscreet as to mention a thing like that.

S: Yes.

M: So, Biascoechea was, in effect, blackmailed by Rajagopal. Poor fellow.

On January fifteenth, ‘the Biascoecheas left for Oakland. Krishnaji and I drove to Ojai. We lunched with Erna, Theo, and Ruth, and discussed the Biascoechea deposition and the Dr. Pollock visit.’

S: So, you didn’t know why, at that time, Biascoechea was lying, either?

M: No. Biascoechea had told Erna about it, but not me. I only knew about the purported “relationship” between Rosalind and Krishnaji from Krishnaji.

‘At lunch was born the idea of a Krishnaji Education Center in Ojai. We planned to hold meetings in Ojai. Erna, Theo, Krishnaji, and I took a walk. Erna told me of Rajagopal’s blackmail of Biascoechea in 1946.’

The next day ‘was a beautiful day. We went to a movie called Scalp Hunters in Santa Monica.’

S: [laughs] Traditional fare, in other words?

M: Yes.

On January eighteenth, ‘we went to Ojai. Krishnaji had his hair cut, and we both had chiropractic treatment from Dr. Lay. We lunched with the Lilliefelts, Ben Patterson, and Ruth. We discussed the Krishnaji Educational Center meetings, and set them for four days, commencing March twenty-ninth in Ojai. Erna and I telephoned Leipziger, and discussed the Biascoechea deposition. Coming home in the car, Krishnaji said he is willing to make a deposition, but have we gone as far with the case as is necessary morally?’

On the nineteenth, ‘Sidney Field again came for lunch with Krishnaji, and talked to him about reincarnation.’

S: Was that recorded?

M: No, it wasn’t recorded. You see, these conversations just happened. The one that was eventually done was a reconstruction of one of these things. We’ll come to mention it.

S: Aha! Yes, I remember it, yes. So, these two were not actually recorded.

M: Never tape-recorded. No.

On the twenty-first, ‘again we drove to Ojai and talked to Erna and Theo about the case. Lunched and drove home.’

The next day. ‘I sold’…oh, I had a little MG car that Filomena used, and I sold it. Krishnaji and I went to a movie, Le Boucher.’ Don’t remember a thing about it.

On January twenty-fourth, ‘we drove to Ojai. Krishnaji held a discussion with about sixty-five young people at the Lilliefelt’s. I taped it on the Nagra. We lunched there with the Lilliefelts, Ruth Tettemer, Catherine Kieran, Albion Patterson, and KFA’s new trustee, Alan Kishbaugh. After lunch, we held a trustee meeting and discussed the education plan and publishing.’

On the twenty-fourth, ‘I met Alain at the airport, and went to the Volkswagen agent and bought a beige station wagon.’ [Chuckles.] ‘I left the Jaguar to have its 30,000-mile service, and drove home in the VW. Krishnaji was waiting by the gate, and approved the purchase. Alain gave Filomena a driving lesson in it.’ It was for her use. She had to have a car when I wasn’t there.

S: Of course.

M: ‘At lunch, we taped a discussion on reincarnation derived partly from Krishnaji’s conversation to Sidney Field last week. We walked on the beach.’

The next day, ‘we drove in the new VW to Rosenthal’s office. We met him and Leipziger and the Lilliefelts. We talked about possible future events in the case. The decision was made to go ahead. The Lilliefelts came back to lunch with us and Alain, and we discussed the education plan.’

‘Later, Krishnaji and Alain had a conversation on the supposed masters, which I taped on the Nagra. Krishnaji and Alain went for a walk while I rested a little.’ [Aside.] Now that must be somewhere…

S: Yes. It’s in the archives list.

M: ‘Krishnaji and Alain did another discussion the next day.’ And it says, ‘a marvelous one.

‘I went to fetch the Jaguar and then all three of us went for a cold, windy walk on the beach.’

On the twenty-seventh, ‘Krishnaji and Alain did another taped dialogue, starting with the Upanishads, and going on to emptying the mind of everything but fact as the ending of thought. A mind that is not empty can never find truth. We lunched at home and walked on the lower road.’

The next day, ‘I have a headache. Krishnaji and Alain did another tape. Mr. Faria arrived from Puerto Rico. Theo met him and brought him here to tea, then took him to Ojai, where Theo and Erna are putting him up. We discussed a little about the KWINC case with him.’ He was a lawyer. ‘Meanwhile, Alain left for San Francisco.’

The twenty-ninth of January ‘was a lovely, quiet day. Krishnaji said there was “a fire of energy” in his head in the night. He said “memory is the source of the self.” We did letters and walked on the beach in the afternoon.’

‘A letter came from Marianne Borel about the de Vidases, having been threatened by Rajagopal in the past.’ Remember Marianne Borel, that sort of spinstery, spidery French lady; she used to go to Saanen all the time, and she used to put up the money for the barn where all the young people stayed.

S: Ohh, yes, yes, yes. [Laughs.] The most unlikely supporter of the Saanen hippie crowd.

M: Yes. Absolutely.

S: I know. [Laughs.]

M: She was like sort of a bird, with white hair and very nice.

S: Mm, hm. Mm, hm.

M: January thirtieth ‘was a windy, clear day, and Krishnaji and I drove to Ojai. He spoke again of extraordinary light burning in the mind.’ It says he was awake three hours with it in the night.

‘We lunched with Erna, Theo, Ruth, and Mr. Faria. Faria had read all the papers on the case and advised going ahead. We went for a walk up McAndrew Road and then drove home.’

The next day, ‘I took the Nagra for an adjustment, then met the Lilliefelts and Faria at Saul Rosenthal’s office. We discussed going ahead with the Rajagopal deposition with Rosenthal instead of Leipziger. I spoke briefly to Saul afterwards. Erna drove back with me and Theo, and Faria followed. We all had tea with Krishnaji.’ He hadn’t come to that meeting with the lawyers.

February first, ‘Alain telephoned about some possible Zen experts for a discussion with Krishnaji.’ That was when we had the idea of getting people from different persuasions or disciplines to do taped video recordings with Krishnaji. Or audio recordings, either one that we could.

‘Krishnaji and I drove to the Lilliefelt’s for lunch. Faria was there but left later. We discussed finances a bit. I had a treatment with Dr. Lay while Krishnaji and Erna walked. Then we drove home in time for supper. Martha Longnecker telephoned. San Diego State University wants to film the discussions that Krishnaji might do with various people.’ That was the origin of all those videos that were done down there.

S: Yes. Yes.

M: The next day, ‘Krishnaji dictated a reply to Marianne Borel’s letter. Sidney Field came and went for a walk with Krishnaji in the afternoon.’

On the third of February, ‘Rosenthal is to file immediately for a Rajagopal deposition. Talked to Sidney Roth, Erna, Alain, Martha Longnecker about Krishnaji’s videotaped meetings in San Diego. Krishnaji wants to give two public talks in Ojai in April.’ Sidney Roth put up the money for some of that.

The next day, ‘we went on errands in town. Passport photos and so forth. We bought books and silk lining for Huntsman gray flannel at’—well, a silk store I went to. ‘Krishnaji says he hasn’t felt so rested since the war,’ i.e., the ’40s.

S: How nice. How nice.

M: Having been there that whole winter was wonderful.

S: Yes. I’m sure it was so good for him.

M: It was marvelous for me, also, in spite of the case and all that goings-on—he was able to walk, to sleep, to just be quiet, more or less.

S: How marvelous.

M: The next day, the fifth, ‘we went to a movie in Santa Monica, Snow Job, with Jean-Claude Killy’—it was a skiing movie. It was probably because I like skiing movies and surfing movies. [S laughs.] So, I guess that’s why we went. ‘Alain telephoned. He has found a Jesuit, Father Shallot, at San Francisco University to do a videotape dialogue with Krishnaji.’

‘Krishnaji told of waking last night and seeing for a brief moment that it was as if something were being done in his brain, his inner brain,’ it says. ‘It disappeared, that is the feeling, and he felt he mustn’t pursue it. It is part of what has been going on lately,’ it says.

S: Hm. [Pause.]

M: On February sixth, ‘I worked at my desk and Krishnaji slept. We watched the winter Olympics on television, and walked on the beach.’

The next day, ‘Krishnaji wished to come with me to Inglewood to get new tires for the Jaguar. We tried to walk around there while waiting for the tires to be put on, but there was a sense of danger in that part of town, and we went back to the tire place. Krishnaji stood and watched the installing of the tires being fitted. He said, on the way home, that he shouldn’t have gone there.’ It was a part of town where gangs were beginning, and it really was a dangerous place; it wasn’t somewhere to go for a stroll…

S: Exactly.

M: …which is what we did to pass the time. He felt it and I felt it, too.

S: Yes.

M: February eighth, the Rajagopal deposition was filed for.

On the tenth of February, ‘Krishnaji slept in the morning and the afternoon. We had a beach walk. In the evening, Krishnaji was given a shock when I spoke to him while he was “far away” while watching television. It caused him to shake and he felt it all night, so sensitive has his body become.’ We were sitting watching television, and after supper, I remember it clearly, I casually spoke to him. I didn’t realize he was off…

S: Mm, hm. Mm, hm.

M: …and he came to with this jar. It was like waking him up, which he said, never wake him up, or if you have to, when I did, I would make small noises, so that it would gradually enter his consciousness.

S: Mm, hm. Mm, hm.

M: It was something that…you never woke him up the way you would someone else, and that was a moment when I should have been aware, but we were watching television. Anyway.

On the eleventh, ‘we went to Ojai with Krishnaji driving. We lunched again with the Lilliefelts, Ruth, and Albion. We discussed the educational gathering in Ojai during Easter week, and whether to meet a Mr. Kern from the Kern Foundation when he and Joy Mills and Helen Zahara of the Theosophical Society come here.’ Mr. Kern, of the Kern Foundation, was then and still is publishing The Commentaries on Living. ‘They have a huge amount of money to spend on publishing.’ And in those days, we needed to publish.

S: Yes.

M: ‘We went to look at the Ojai Bowl as a possible place for Krishnaji’s talks in April, and to see a little house that a Ms. Gilman is giving to KFA. She is a little, bright-eyed old lady, shyly delighted when Krishnaji came.’ I remember nothing more about it.

S: Where was the Ojai Bowl?

M: It’s in town, where the little park is.

S: Oh, yes.

M: And there’s the little tennis courts and there’s a small stage, like a bowl, and they give concerts. They have the Ojai Music Festival there, and Krishnaji did speak there eventually.

February thirteenth. ‘It was a beautiful day, all the loveliness of California. I cooked all morning. Father Eugene Shallot and his assistant, a Miss Jacqueline Kelly, came to lunch. He will do a dialogue with Krishnaji in San Diego on Thursday. He’s a professor of sociology at San Francisco University, the Jesuit university. They left at 4 p.m., and we went for a beach walk. Television showed the first half of Ben Hur, and Krishnaji wanted to see it.’ That happened to be my birthday, but nobody mentioned that. [S laughs.] I concealed it.

On the fourteenth, ‘I packed. We had an early lunch, and left at 1:45 p.m. for La Jolla, 140 miles away, and to Martha Longnecker’s house. She is lending it for Krishnaji’s stay. We arrived at 4 p.m. She and Sidney Roth were there. Dr. Alan Anderson came to call. He is a teacher of Religious Studies at San Diego State and will do videotaped conversations with Krishnaji on Wednesday.’ She had a very nice house.

S: Did it overlook the ocean?

M: Well, it was back in the town, but it slopes up a ways so you can see the ocean. It was a small house, but nice, and just right for us. She moved out so we could move in.

S: How nice.

M: The next day, Krishnaji rested while I marketed and checked motel arrangements for the Tibetan Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and for Naudé and for Shallot, etcetera. I made our lunch and we went to San Diego State University, where Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and his assistant, Marvin Kasbar, arrived. Krishnaji and Trungpa were videotaped in dialogue. The Tibetan was nice, but contributed little.’ [Chuckles.] ‘Krishnaji did it all, so very valuable. The Tibetan, Kasbar, and two followers came back to tea.’ [Aside.] I don’t remember that. ‘After they left, Krishnaji and Alain, who had arrived for all this with Trungpa, went for a walk, and I fixed supper for the three of us.’ [Aside.] I forgot that he came for tea.

The sixteenth, ‘Krishnaji did a videotape in the morning with Dr. Alan Anderson of religious studies, San Diego State. Krishnaji, Alain, and I lunched, and later went for a walk through La Jolla. Shopped at Tweeds and Weaves, and Krishnaji and I had supper alone.’

The next day, ‘in the morning, Krishnaji did another taped conversation with Father Eugene Shallot. There was trouble with the assistant, Miss Kelly, about signing the release.’ [Chuckle.] ‘We loaded the car, took sandwiches for lunch, and Krishnaji, Alain, and I drove to Malibu.’

‘Rajagopal is to make a deposition on March twentieth.’

On the eighteenth, ‘Father Daniel O’Handlin from San Francisco came in the morning and we taped on the Nagra a conversation between Krishnaji and him. He stayed for lunch and then left, and later Alain left for San Francisco. Krishnaji and I beach-walked and went over to the Dunnes’. We were quiet at last after a busy week.’

The nineteenth ‘was a quiet, gentle day. I did deskwork, and Krishnaji rested and slept. Leipziger called to ask if his wife Mary and infant son Charles could come by the house. They came for tea. Krishnaji and I walked later on the lawn. Krishnaji wonders if something in my past life’ [laughs] ‘causes my sometime mannerisms of tension.’

S: [laughs, as M laughs again, too] Was he serious about that?

M: I don’t know. How do you know when he’s serious about these things?

S: [laughs] I don’t know.

M: And you didn’t ask.

S: No…of course not.

M: If there’s any posterity listening, you may well wonder why I didn’t ask, and I’m tired of explaining that I didn’t want to push, or ask pushy questions. If he wanted to tell me, hooray. If he didn’t, he didn’t have to.

S: I know. Yes.

M: Maybe that wasn’t, from an archivist point of view, the thing to do.

S: But there was just a sense of that around Krishnaji; that there were certain things that you just took in, in another way, and didn’t take in with your reasoning brain. That’s just what one did.

M: And also, my point of view was to make everything go well for him.

S: Yes. Yes.

M: Anyway…There’s nothing interesting about Krishnaji until the twenty-second, when ‘he said, meditation was so strong that he couldn’t sleep.’ All these days, there’s a walk on the beach, but I don’t always mention it.

Nothing of significance until the twenty-sixth…

S: What about the twenty-fifth? What happened to twenty-fifth?

M: Nothing. I drove Filomena to the Italian consulate office and so forth, got home in time for lunch. Krishnaji walked with Sidney Field, and I went to see the Dunnes. You don’t have to know everything!

S: Yes, we do. Absolutely everything [laughing].

M: But why? [Laughing.]

S: Well, we know that Sidney Field came. That’s important.

M: …it says on the twenty-sixth, ‘after lunch, we went to see a movie, The Hard Rock, a comic detective film. Coming out, Krishnaji asked about ice cream, which he hadn’t had in years. So we went into Will Wright’s—that was a little store that had wonderful ice cream—and he chose English Toffee. We had a small portion at supper. It promptly [laughter in voice] came up, but he said, “I see why people like it!”’ [S laughs.] He liked ice cream, from then on.

S: How funny.

M: But his stomach couldn’t take it initially, but it got used to it. ‘Later he told me I should write some of the things he tells me very well, with style.’

S: When does the big book begin again?

M: It begins on seventeen April.

S: It doesn’t begin until then? Okay. So you didn’t heed his advice right away? [Laughs.]

M: No. [S laughs.] Um, oh, things about my family.

S: Alright, but you’re not allowed to leave out one little thing about Krishnaji, not one little scrap.

M: The twenty-seventh ‘was another quiet day at home with a lot accomplished. Because of my back, walking on the slant of the beach is difficult.’ I’m sure you want to know this.

S: Yes, I do.

M: ‘We explored other places for walking up Serra Road. At supper, we watched on television Nixon’s return from China and a NET film The Restive Earth on the formation of continents.’

The first of March, ‘was a clear, warm day. We drove to Ojai. Krishnaji had his hair cut, then we lunched with Erna, Theo, Ruth, Albion Patterson. Afterwards, Krishnaji answered questions, mostly from Patterson, on the relation of his personal early history to the teachings for people without that background. Krishnaji said it had no relevance. “What happened to him interests people who are not really interested in themselves.”’ [Both laugh.] ‘“There is no path, no system. There is a quality of mind you cannot put into words that can go into the question of truth. There is a mystery which one must approach with extraordinary delicacy. The conscious mind cannot do this. The word is not the thing. If one comes to the thing, one never puts it into words, but can say it is there. I know it is there.” Krishnaji walked, but was tired and we drove home. Krishnaji wants to stay in Ojai during the educational meetings. Erna invited us both to stay at their house.’

March two. ‘A quiet day at home. Deskwork for me and rest for Krishnaji. He added a small bit to yesterday’s tape, saying he had no ill feeling towards the TS people who opposed him. He had no relationship at all to them.’

The fourth of March, ‘was another hot day. In the afternoon, Krishnaji wanted to walk on the beach. The salt air does him good, and I feel my back better since not walking on the slope. So he walked on the beach, and I kept parallel on the beach road. We both walked very fast to Puerco Canyon and back to the end of the beach road.’

‘Krishnaji read a report on some kind of research that predicts the collapse of the world economies in seventy years unless growth, birth, and pollution are drastically halted. Krishnaji asked what is the individual’s answer to such catastrophe? He said the response must come not out of the problems, or compulsion, but out of freedom. What matters is to live rightly.’

On the eighth of March, ‘with a pot of beans, we left at 9:30 a.m. for Ojai. There’s a meeting at the Lilliefelt’s with John Kern of the Kern Foundation, Joy Mills, and Helen Zahara (of the TS National Headquarters in Wheaton, Illinois), Erna, Theo, Ruth, and Albion Patterson. Krishnaji explained vividly why his books should not be published by Quest, the TS publishing house, and they left.’

S: Hm. Was that recorded too, do you think?

M: I don’t think so.

‘We discussed miscellaneous business matters. At three, David Young and Mrs. Marjorie Keller came to talk to Krishnaji alone. Do you remember Marjorie Keller?

S: No.

M: Well, she had a daughter here at Brockwood who married Frodo.

S: Ah! Yes. Oh, I remember her. Cassandra. Yes.

M: Cassandra.

S: Oh, that’s Marjorie Keller. Aha.

M: And David Young—he was mixed up in Ojai and Happy Valley things. ‘They came about Rajagopal’s dispute and talked for one-and-a-half hours, after which Krishnaji   recounted it all to the rest of us. He made it all very clear to them that if Rajagopal wishes to settle, it must be handled by lawyers and the attorney general.’

The next day, ‘Erna and Theo came down about Santa Monica Auditorium for Krishnaji to talk in. Sidney Field came for a walk with Krishnaji.’

On the twelfth [laughs], ‘Krishnaji and I telephoned Dorothy at Brockwood just for fun.’ [S laughs.] ‘Again we walked on the lawn. I was busy with income tax. Rajagopal has asked for postponement of his deposition for March twenty to the twenty-eighth.’

The next day, ‘we went to the dentist the next day and saw West Side Story on television. Krishnaji said meditation was so intense in the night that he wanted to get up. Also felt something evil outside so that he looked out the window, “as if when there is great good, evil attempts to come sniffing around.” He often said about that.

S: I know. [Pause, Mary sighs.] He said once that great good attracts evil.

M: Yes, yes.

S: And that there were times when evil was present and it was dangerous.

M: Yes. There were such times. He’d feel danger, and he would also feel protected, but—I know I’ve said this in a previous discussion—but he spoke of it often, that evil would try to get at him through…

S: People close…

M: …some others, you or me or somebody…and it really does. Not that we’d be evil, but that we’d be vulnerable…

S: …be hurt, or in an accident, or…

M: …yes, yes,

S: We’ll talk about this later because it comes up later, I know.

M: Yes.

On the seventeenth, ‘Alain arrived just after lunch, having motored down from San Francisco. He brought ties for Krishnaji and a pretty scarf and a little bottle for me. He and Krishnaji walked on the beach, and I went over to see the Dunnes. They were playing Mozart. Before lunch, I went over the Nagra equipment with Alain, who will tape Krishnaji’s talks tomorrow.’

On the eighteenth, ‘Alain went to the Santa Monica Auditorium early with the Nagra. Krishnaji and I got there at 11 a.m. A process server handed Krishnaji a summons for a deposition backstage just before he went on stage to speak. It was a cross-complaint from Rajagopal et al. against Krishnaji, Erna, Ruth, me, and Sidney Roth.’

S: How charming [sarcastic tone], just before Krishnaji is to give a public talk.

M: Yes, wanting to discourage him.

S: That guy was such an absolute, terrible, evil…

M: ‘It had no effect on Krishnaji.’ [S chuckles.] ‘He handed it to Theo and went in and gave a fine talk’ [ for the video ] [S chuckles.] ‘for one-and-a-quarter hours. Erna and I telephoned Rosenthal, who was shocked at the service before the talk, but not surprised at a cross-complaint.’

‘Krishnaji, Alain, and I had lunch at home and Erna and Theo came by on their way to Ojai. Krishnaji was very sharp on analyzing Rajagopal’s actions, especially about the alleged oral agreement that Rajagopal says Krishnaji gave him on a trusteeship for life. Krishnaji said to me later, “Judas isn’t in it”—i.e., Judas was pale by comparison.’

S: Mm, hm.

M: Next day, the nineteenth, ‘Krishnaji gave his second Santa Monica talk with tremendous force. He based much of it on the questions asked in a letter handed in yesterday by a Bob StevenS: How can one be free and still be part of a rotten system and society due to having a job? At 4 p.m., Krishnaji gave an interview to a physics professor, Dr. Mael Melvin.’

On the twentieth, ‘Alan Kishbaugh came for dinner, and Krishnaji came to the table and stayed up till he left. Betsy[3] was there till they left.’

The next day, ‘Krishnaji, Alain, and I drove to town. Krishnaji had space shoes fitting.’ [Laughs.] ‘Then we all had Mexican food at the farmer’s market. I took them to a movie in Hollywood, then I went for a fitting at a dressmaker.’

S: We should say what those space shoes are, for those people who don’t know [laughing], because we call them space shoes.

M: How could people not know what a space shoe is? [S laughs.] Well, they are remarkably clumsy, big shoes that are extremely comfortable and good for your feet; and how you acquire them is you put each foot into a shoebox, which is full of plaster of Paris, and you sit there. It’s usually very cold. And when you’ve sat long enough, the shoemaker takes it; from that he makes a form of your foot, and from the form, he makes two shoes which absolutely conform to every little bump or anything on your feet. And they’re light, because the bottoms are made with cork. They look heavy, like Frankenstein sort of shoes, but they’re actually quite light because they’re made of cork. I still wear them. And I thought Krishnaji would like them. He liked the idea, but I must say [chuckling] he didn’t wear them much. [M and S laugh.] They weren’t quite the best leather. They didn’t have a certain je ne sais quoi

S: Exactly.

M: …that Lobb has, but anyway, he went along with it. [S laughing.] But beyond that, I can’t say too much. ‘I picked up Krishnaji and Alain after their movie, and we came home.’

Then, it says here, ‘Sidney Roth, Martha Longnecker, and a Mr. Van Lewin, and Miss… Mrs. Robinson or Mr. Robinson’—I don’t know—‘came to show the video cassette made of Sunday’s talk. Very good. The color is excellent. Ease of cassette. A Sony device. Exceptional.’ I don’t know what that is.

The next day, ‘we were home all day. Krishnaji saw Tara Singh at 4 p.m.’ Do I have to explain Tara Singh?

S: Yes, if he’s in this, you have to explain him.

M: Tara Singh is a Sikh. You can tell by the name. He left India ages ago, and he’s known Krishnaji for years. He was a man of mystery back in those days, who apparently could live in the United States without any visible means of support. Eventually, (he hadn’t yet at this point) he turned himself into a guru, and to this day, I think he has a some sort of a foundation.

S: Mm, hm.

M: And he teaches people to do miracles, I think. I’ve been told he’s written a book about it. I haven’t read it. And I don’t want to say too much more about him [laughing, S laughing, too] because my impressions are not flattering. And it’s of no moment to anybody for me to immortalize my opinions of Tara Singh. But, anyway…

S: Alright. We’ll let you off the hook on this one.

M: He had an interview.

‘Sidney Field came the next day, joining Alain and Krishnaji on the walk.’

On the twenty-fourth of March, ‘Alain checked two of the transcripts of dialogues with Krishnaji. I wrote a long letter to my lawyer in New York, Mitchell Booth, about the Miss Dodge will and Krishnaji. And also about the cross-complaint by Rajagopal about Mr. Pinter’s papers.’

S: What’s that all about?

M: I can’t exactly remember…Mr. Pinter, whom I never met, or I think I spoke with him early, he warned Krishnaji that Rajagopal was making off with everything. And that Krishnaji would wind up with nothing, without even a presence, much less any influence, in his own organization, which of course is exactly what happened. Somehow, all this   came into the case. I don’t quite remember the details.

On the twenty-fifth, ‘Krishnaji gave his third talk in Santa Monica. He said, “order carries its own law, which is its own discipline.” We went back to the house for lunch. A woman called Ruth McCandless lunched with us, and so did Erna and Theo. And Leipziger has received some of the papers asked for from Rajagopal’—we’d asked for them. ‘No delay has been asked so far by Rajagopal for his deposition next Tuesday.’

March twenty-sixth. It says, ‘Krishnaji and I have been living on two levels for the last two days. He gave his fourth talk at Santa Monica, a superb one, [for the video ] on energy that comes when thought is ended. The first step is the last, and it is freedom.’

Alan Kishbaugh brought Frank Waters, an anthropology writer on Native Americans, and Giovanna d’Onofreo, a voice teacher, to lunch. Krishnaji and Waters are to do a taped dialogue tomorrow. At 4 p.m., Krishnaji gave interviews to five people. Later, Krishnaji, Alain, and I walked on the lawn.

The next day, ‘I had to do errands while Krishnaji held discussion with Frank Waters, which Alain recorded. At 12:40 p.m., Krishnaji and Alain met me at a movie theater, where we saw The Godfather with Marlon Brando. Krishnaji brought a picnic lunch, but didn’t eat it till afterwards in the car in the parking lot. Krishnaji and Alain bought some shirts and we came home. I listened to the discussion recorded this morning and spoke with Saul Rosenthal, who will do Rajagopal’s deposition tomorrow. Erna called later to say that Rosenthal wants her present at the deposition.’

I must say, I’d like to hear that tape again.

On March twenty-eight, ‘Dorothy telephoned from Brockwood about the tenders on the building. We need £23,000 sterling more to complete the Cloisters. Krishnaji told me to say “Find out how much of it we can build doing the foundation of the whole.”’ I don’t know what that means.

S: Do the foundation for the whole thing, and then only build like one wing of it or something.

M: I guess so. He suggested Dorothy write to Perrine, too. Krishnaji and I then drove to Ojai, arriving at 5:30 p.m. Erna had been all day with Rosenthal at the Rajagopal deposition. Rajagopal had done himself no good, she said.’ Now, I perhaps shouldn’t read what I wrote because we have an agreement not to discuss what was said in Rajagopal’s deposition, so I’ll have to censor this. So, I’ll skip the part about the deposition.

S: Okay.

M: We spent the night at the Lilliefelt’s.

The next day, ‘Krishnaji held the first meeting of the educational gathering, a discussion with thirty-odd invited teachers and others. I taped it on the Nagra. Alain, who had spoken in Los Angeles last night, came up from Malibu. Erna again spent today with Rosenthal at Rajagopal’s deposition. I marketed before the meeting, and did all the meals. Krishnaji, Theo, and I walked down the road and met Erna returning. All walked back and talked.’

‘Rajagopal is turning and twisting. Rosenthal was very good, Erna says. He went through Rajagopal’s complaint against us. Nonsense. Rosenthal bore down on Rajagopal about threats. Rajagopal said he had only seen Krishnaji alone for five minutes.’ I can say this because it doesn’t refer to his finances.

On the thirtieth, ‘Krishnaji held the second meeting of the educational gathering, mostly on comparison. I taped it on the Nagra. I cooked for Krishnaji, Erna, Theo, and me, then we went to Dr. Lay’—that was the chiropractor. ‘I did marketing and then met Krishnaji and Theo on the walk. I invented a new soup for Krishnaji…’ [Laughing.] Oh dear, you don’t want that.

S: Yes, we do.

M: Alright, but I’ll just say, ‘Swiss chard and various vegetables. We had supper alone as Erna and Theo were out. In the morning, Krishnaji came to me with almost tears and said, “Come, let me show you this place.” We looked down the valley and at the hills. He loves this place so much. The air was filled with the smell of orange blossoms, and he had me listen to a hum, which was the bees in the grove. I asked him if he would like to get a place here, that I would sell Malibu if he wished it. He wouldn’t hear of that, but came back later to thank me.’

S: Mm, hm.

M: March thirty-first. ‘Krishnaji held the third meeting of the educational gathering. It was a good discussion. Robert Gold, a lawyer from Blaisdell, lunched with Krishnaji, Erna, Theo, and me and discussed the case. He advised receivership for KWINC. Krishnaji, Theo, and I walked down the Thatcher Road. On our return, Krishnaji had me write down that he had, in the early morning, a feeling of meditation that he had never had before. “From my center, from my heart that filled the whole valley. It went on for a considerable time. From that, it went to my head, and was a most extraordinary thing. It has been pursuing me on all the walk and when I was talking to him”’—the lawyer Gold—‘“it was just a voice talking. There was no reaction. It was just happening.”’

S: Hm.

M: That takes us through the end of March, 1972, and a good place to stop.

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[1] An eventual trustee of the Krishnamurti Foundation of America. Back to text.

[2] Biascoechea was one of the long standing donors to Krishnaji’s work who legally had the right to know what was done with their donations. Back to text.

[3] Betsy Drake, a long-standing friend of Mary’s. Back to text.