Issue #26

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Issue 26 – January 1, 1973 to April 27, 1973


Most of this issue takes place in California, in Malibu, and then San Francisco where Krishnaji gave a series of talks.

In addition to the ongoing legal dispute with Rajagopal, Mary refers to Krishnaji dictating the first of what were to become Letters to Schools which he intended to dictate fortnightly.

On a more quotidian level, nature impinges on Mary’s life as she copes with severe rain which results in leaks in the house and structural damage caused by a landslide; she also records an earthquake.

An insight into Krishnaji and Mary’s relationship is gained by a chance remark Krishnaji makes about Mary and the Lilliefelts having ‘been sent by something to look after him’.


The Memoirs of Mary Zimbalist: Issue #26

Mary: Krishnaji is in India through part of this period, so when I’m not with him, there’s not as much about him as when we’re together. I’ll try to confine myself to things about Krishnaji and the work.

The first such notation is January fifth, 1973. ‘Erna, Theo, and I went to the Ventura County Court for a hearing on various motions in the lawsuit, including ones to examine the KWINC books. Stanley Cohen represented us before a Judge Heaton. Somebody called Gary Gilbert was there for Rajagopal. Mrs. Casselberry and her son Austin Bee were present. The judge rejected Rajagopal’s claims for Rosenthal’s five-day-late reply on the interrogatories.’ Apparently, Rajagopal wanted everything thrown out on the technicality that the interrogatories came in five days late. So that was a slight legal point.

On the ninth, ‘Judge Heaton of the Ventura Court granted all our motions, including access to KWINC records. I cabled the news to Krishnaji in Bangalore. And I wrote to him all the details.’

On the tenth, ‘a letter came from Frank Noyes about having seen Rajagopal twice. Rajagopal had an accident with a dog knocking him over. Rajagopal doesn’t want to make an offer for a settlement. He says that Rajagopal claims that Krishnaji is “destroying him,” etcetera.’

‘There was a cable from Krishnaji that came on the thirteenth about the cable I sent him on the ninth, and my letter about the court hearing.’

‘Krishnaji left Bombay and flew to Rome on January thirty-first.’

On February fifth, ‘Krishnaji flew from Rome to Brockwood. At 11 a.m., I met Erna and Theo in the Beverly Hills office of an accountant. Rosenthal and Stanley Cohen were also present. We discussed what to look for in the KWINC accounts. I lunched nearby with Erna and Theo. It kept raining and raining and raining.’

On the ninth of February. It says here, ‘the house was put in as the last bit of order. Krishnaji had left Brockwood, and at 1 p.m. English time, he took a TWA flight from London, and I met him at Los Angeles Airport at 4:30 p.m., looking very well in spite of his long flight and all his work this winter. We came back to Malibu, unpacked, and had supper by the fire. Krishnaji was not sleepy and so he talked a lot.’

The next day, ‘it rained and we made breakfast together. He rested in bed all morning, but got up for lunch. Amanda came back from the hospital. Krishnaji slept all afternoon and we had supper by the fire and went early to bed. It rained all night.’ [Chuckles.] What a litany of rain in this thing!

On the eleventh, ‘it rained till mid-morning. There were 5.16 inches of rain for this storm, for a season total so far of 13.37 inches.’ These are very vital statistics [S laughs] if you live in California!

Scott: Exactly. [M laughs.] Here in England, it would be nothing.

M: Yes, just another weekend. ‘Krishnaji rested in the morning. In the afternoon, I went over to the Dunne’s for a short visit. When Krishnaji finished his nap, we went back to the Dunne’s, and Krishnaji put his hands on Amanda for healing. Then, we took a brisk walk on the lower road.’

The twelfth, ‘there was more rain. On television, they showed the return of the prisoners of war from Vietnam. I got lunch for Krishnaji and myself. In the afternoon, we went to the Dunne’s for Krishnaji to treat Amanda again. The Jaguar refused to start and so I left it in the Dunne’s driveway, and we came back on foot and walked around the lawn. My bedroom roof leaked in the night right over the bed.’ [Both laugh.] Ohhh!

‘Erna and Theo came on the fourteenth in the afternoon to see Krishnaji and we talked at length. At 5 p.m., Krishnaji and I walked over to the Dunne’s. Krishnaji treated Amanda, and the Lilliefelts went on to dinner in town.’

On the sixteenth. ‘We went to the Dunne’s in the afternoon. Amanda is improving markedly. Krishnaji said that from across the canyon, he felt something continuing to help her. Amanda says she feels it, too.’

The seventeenth, ‘was a beautiful day. We left at 9:30 a.m., taking a pot of creole rice…’ That was something he liked very much; I used to make it for him.

S: What is it?

M: It was basically rice cooked with tomatoes and onions and things. [Chuckles.] ‘…and we drove to Ojai. There was snow on Topatopa and the other mountains. We met the other trustees at the Lilliefelt’s at 11 a.m. It was a meeting to discuss most everything. Krishnaji wants to give four Ojai talks in April on seventh, eighth, fourteenth, and fifteenth. We took a walk later and then drove home at 6 p.m., had supper and went to bed early. Krishnaji said he felt something happening for Amanda, even from as far away as Ojai.’

The eighteenth ‘was a warm, lovely day; a lazy one. We went to the Dunne’s and walked in the hills.’

S: Where would you walk in the hills?

M: We’d go up something called Corral Canyon to the very top, and then you could walk along the ridge on fire roads. Those mountains all have fire roads so the trucks can get in if there’s a fire. And you could see vast stretches of ocean. It’s quite lovely.

On the twentieth, ‘Krishnaji had a 100.3 fever.’ No wonder he felt washed out. ‘He stayed in bed all day. He had no other symptoms except weakness. He slept almost nine hours.’ He had a great ability to sleep.

S: Yes. But Krishnaji’s sleep often seems to have been rather active.

M: How do you mean?

S: Well, he would say things like, things came to him in the middle of the night, or that…

M: Oh, yes.

S: So, it wasn’t that he was just—

M: Out!

S: Out. His brain was…or something was happening very often.

M: Something was happening.

S: So, I don’t know if one should even call it sleep. I mean, he certainly was resting, but…

M: Well…yes.

S: But some of that, certainly, from his descriptions, some of it doesn’t seem so restful. [Laughs.]

M: That’s all in the large category of “mystery.”

S: I know.

M: Now, on the following day, which was the twenty-first, ‘we were awakened at 6:45 a.m. by an earthquake.’ [Both chuckle.] ‘5.75 magnitude, centered thirty-four miles west of Santa Monica in the ocean. Not as strong here as in 1970. Krishnaji’s temperature was normal, but he felt weak and stayed in bed all day.’

On the twenty-third, ‘Krishnaji’s fever was gone, and he got up for lunch. At 3 p.m., Sidney Roth, Martha Longenecker, Erna and Theo, Ruth, Albion Patterson, and Alan Kishbaugh came to discuss filming a course with Krishnaji at San Diego; how to do it and with whom. We tentatively planned to do it with all of us asking questions during the week of March sixth.’ This, of course, became the Anderson series.

The next day, ‘Sidney Field came for lunch. Then, Krishnaji and I went to see a movie, Sleuth, with Laurence Olivier and Michael Caine. Krishnaji fainted gently as we came home along the Pacific Coast Highway, and then he half-fainted again a few minutes later. He said, “I felt far away.”’

S: What happened to Martha Longenecker?

M: Oh, she’s still around. I saw her last winter. She and Sidney Roth eventually married, and then he died. She still lives in San Diego. She’s a potter, and active in the museum there. You’ve met her. She came here to Brockwood.

S: I can’t remember her.

M: Well, she was very kind and twice lent us her house; both times we went. She just moved out and turned it over to us.

S: That was very nice of her.

M: And it was very comfortable, and very nice. A pleasant house; small and comfortable.

On the twenty-fifth, ‘we went to the Malibu Cinema for the first time and saw French Connection. He liked that.’

S: [laughing] Of course.

M: ‘Mr. and Mrs. Louis Blau and Mrs. Robert Ellis came to tea to discuss with Krishnaji how they can help the work, and Felix Green came to supper.’

Oh dear, here starts my trouble with the land. The twenty-sixth of February. ‘The county engineer, Mr. Dunning, came to look at new cracks in the earth above the slide place. He recommended that a geologist see it. Krishnaji went over and treated Amanda.’ All that rain did harm to the land.

S: Yes.

M: The twenty-seventh, ‘I had trouble with the Jaguar, which I had to take in. I got back in time to lunch with Krishnaji. Felix Green came to tea and for Krishnaji to treat him.’ He had cancer, too. Everybody had cancer. ‘Then we went to see Amanda later, and took a walk down into the canyon.’

On the twenty-eighth, ‘Frances McCann arrived in Malibu. She is staying in a motel, and came for lunch. Krishnaji talked at length to her later. I drove her back to her motel, and Krishnaji and I went to see the Dunnes. Krishnaji asked if she’—meaning Amanda—‘had noticed anything special. She said only that she felt better. We walked in the canyon, through the Dunne’s gate and along the lower road.’

The first of March. ‘Ruth Tettemer and her sister, Monica Phillips, and Frances McCann came for lunch. Krishnaji dictated the first of what he intends to be fortnightly messages to Brockwood and the India schools.’ Ah, that’s when that began. ‘Again, we went to see Amanda. Walked along the canyon, along the lower road and back.’

S: And what were those fortnightly messages called?

M: Well, I think it’s what became The Letters to the Schools. It isn’t called that here, but says only, ‘the first of fortnightly messages to Brockwood and India schools.’

The next day, ‘I took the Jaguar to be checked. In a rented car, I took the Nagra to be serviced, and then bought silk nightshirts for Krishnaji and left them at a place to be made. Meanwhile, Krishnaji had had Sidney Field to lunch. We went over to the Dunne’s. Krishnaji treated Amanda, and then Krishnaji walked with Sidney while I sat with Amanda and Phil, and talked.’

The third. ‘We had early lunch in the kitchen and picked up Frances McCann and went to a movie, The Getaway, in Santa Monica. When we came back, Krishnaji and I went to the Dunne’s. Amanda was looking suddenly much better. Krishnaji and I went for a walk down the canyon along the beach road.’

The fourth, ‘was a beautiful day.’ There were family things for me. ‘The Mark Lees brought their twins for Krishnaji to treat. Alan Kishbaugh came to lunch and later walked with Krishnaji.’

On the seventh, ‘we were ready to leave at 7:45 a.m. The Jaguar was packed and backed out of the garage and then got flooded. The Auto Club got it going and we left at 8:22 a.m. We were to meet the Lilliefelts and Kishbaugh at Wheeler Ridge by 9:30 a.m., but we missed them. Later, while we paused on Route 5, Kishbaugh came by and followed us from then on to San Francisco. Krishnaji and I reached the Huntington Hotel at 3 p.m. Alain Naudé came for tea.’

March eighth. ‘Alain Naudé came to the hotel at 12:30 p.m., and with the Lilliefelts, the five of us lunched at Trader Vic’s. The’ [chuckles] ‘head waiter, Hans, spoke of Father.’ My father liked Trader Vic’s, so he must have been a memorable client, as he usually was in restaurants he liked. [S laughs.] ‘We walked up to the Masonic Center right next door to the Huntington. Their handsome hall seats 3,165. Krishnaji liked it. We did microphone and light arrangements while he was there. We came back to the hotel and Krishnaji rested, and I made our supper.’ We had a nice flat there with two bedrooms and two bathrooms, a sitting room, and a kitchen. Very convenient.

On March ninth, ‘Krishnaji rested quietly. I did letters. We lunched in the sitting room. While Krishnaji napped, I walked down for supplies—the health food store, and came back on a cable car. At 4 p.m., we drove to the Golden Gate Park. We met Naudé at the tennis courts, and went for a walk around the lake. We came back and Alain dined with us in the sitting room.’

The tenth, ‘we walked across the street to the Masonic Center Auditorium, where at 11 a.m. Krishnaji gave his first San Francisco talk, which was mostly on relationship. The hall was 90 percent full. Naudé taped it on the Nagra. Kishbaugh came for lunch and stayed to talk after Krishnaji took a long nap. The rain kept us in. Jacob Needleman telephoned wanting to see Krishnaji about interviews. I questioned him on his Esalen connection. I suggested he send Krishnaji an outline of the plan he has in mind.’

On the eleventh of March, ‘Krishnaji gave his second San Francisco talk’—this is on a Sunday—‘in the Masonic Auditorium. Erna and Theo lunched with us in the apartment. In late p.m., Krishnaji and I drove to the Golden Gate Park and took a good walk.’

On March twelfth, the Monday, ‘Krishnaji rested. Frances McCann and Alain Naudé came at 12:30 p.m. Krishnaji, and they, and I went to the Cannery…’ It’s a complex; it used to be a cannery in San Francisco, but it been converted into lots of little shops and restaurants and things. ‘…and lunched in a crêpe restaurant. Then we went to Muir Woods, and took a long walk. We were back by 5 p.m., had a rest and supper.’ Muir Woods is across Golden Gate Bridge, and John Muir Woods is full of redwood trees. Very nice.

On the thirteenth, ‘I spoke to Amanda, and also Elfriede.’ Elfriede was the German housekeeper I had in those days and she said that the hill has slipped a bit more after more rain. Krishnaji saw Mrs. Mathias. Then he, Alain, and I went to Ghirardelli Square to lunch, in a Mexican place.’ There’s the Cannery and there’s Ghirardelli Square, both are old manufacturing places that have been made into shops and restaurants. Very nice. ‘Later, we went to see Alain’s flat and he played for us on the piano. I drove us back in time for Monica Phillips to tea.’ Monica Phillips was Ruth Tettemer’s sister, and had known Krishnaji forever.

S: Who was Mrs. Mathias?

M: She was an elderly lady who’d known Krishnaji from way back when. She lived in a very elegant apartment on Nob Hill looking out over Golden Gate Bridge and everything. She was almost blind, and she was a widow by then, and she was also an old close friend of the Rajagopal family.

On the fourteenth, ‘A Dr. Rockman of Argentina came to see Krishnaji at noon. Then Donald Ingram Smith came. We lunched in the rooms. Krishnaji dictated a To the Schools’—you see, now the name comes—‘the first of a series he wants to do. This one on freedom and responsibility. I went out to market and then we walked in Golden Gate Park.’

On March fifteenth, ‘there was a meeting at 11 a.m. of the Lilliefelts, Kishbaugh, and Naudé about taping different discussions. The Lilliefelts, Naudé, Krishnaji, and I went to the Cannery to lunch, at the crêperie again, after which I shopped a little. Krishnaji rested, and then Jacob Needleman came to tea. Later, Krishnaji and I walked in Golden Gate Park.’

The next day, ‘I went to a Dr. Cho, a Chinese chiropractor for back pain.’ I don’t remember that. ‘I returned in time to walk. Krishnaji visited Mrs. Mathias again, where he treated her, and then returned to the hotel, where Dr. Rockman lunched with us. Later we went to Golden Gate Park for a walk.’ You see, I had my car there so we could drive to all these places.

On the seventeenth, ‘Krishnaji gave his third talk at 11 a.m. in the Masonic Auditorium on suffering and death, a very fine one. The audience was HUGE,’ it says. ‘We lunched with the Lilliefelts, Naudé, and Kishbaugh at Hong Kong Garden. We had a vegetarian Chinese meal ordered by Naudé and Kishbaugh. Rested till 5 p.m. Walked around the square outside the hotel. Then Monica Phillips came to tea.’ Right outside the Huntington, up on Nob Hill, there’s a little, very small park. And if we didn’t go to a larger park a drive away, we’d just go out the door, across the street, and walk round and around and around.

S: [laughing] Doing laps.

M: Yes, some laps.

Next day, the eighteenth, ‘Krishnaji gave his fourth San Francisco talk on the religious life, meditation, and enlightenment. The hall was full. Afterward he saw’…some family, whose name I can’t make out. ‘Then, we took Ruth McCandless, Frances McCann, and Alan Kishbaugh to lunch at Hong Kong Garden. At 4 p.m., David and Felicity Hall came to tea. We discussed a meeting of scientists at Brockwood. A possible topic is a total view of things, wholeness. I invited them to Malibu. We will have discussions next weekend. When they left, we did ten laps’ [laughing] ‘around the little park! And then had supper.’

S: Now, who are the Halls?

M: Well, David Hall was a scientist working at Stanford Research and he was doing research on computerizing clouds, [chuckles] I think, either then or at some later point. He was bright, but he had an eccentricity, I guess you’d call it, of liking to wear women’s clothes. [Laughing.]

S: [chuckles] Yes, that’s one of the things you can call it.

M: He had a wife and several children, and they looked perfectly normal, except that he liked to wear women’s clothes.

S: He would show up in women’s clothes?

M: Yes.

S: Like what?

M: Long skirts, blouses, women’s sweaters. I’ve forgotten, really.

S: Really?

M: Yes.

S: That’s extraordinarily eccentric. [Both chuckle.]

M: He didn’t look gay, as it were. He looked perfectly normal, with a square masculine build. But this was part of what he thought of as freedom, or some such notion. [S laughs.] I’d forgotten about him. I have some correspondence with him in Ojai, but I’ve forgotten what’s in it. [Chuckles.]

Now comes the nineteenth. ‘It rained, and I went back to Dr. Cho for my back. I photocopied To the Schools. Krishnaji went again to see Mrs. Mathias.’ She adored Krishnaji. She’s the one who gave me those photographs of Krishnaji by that great photographer, Edward Weston. I have them in Ojai. You’ve seen them. Mrs. Mathias left them to me in her will. She was a very nice woman, and she was very friendly to me. She was also close to Rosalind and Radha. She felt the legal case was regrettable, but she didn’t take sides in the dispute. She’s been dead some years now.

On the twentieth, ‘we left the Huntington at 9:05 a.m., and drove south. The Big Sur route was closed, so we came down 101 through rain, hail, and sleet. We stopped for a forty-minute picnic lunch at Pismo Beach. Krishnaji drove from the Pleasant Valley bypass to Malibu, arriving at 4:45 p.m. Seven hours and forty minutes, with one hour for stops, equals six hours and forty minutes’ [laughter in voice] ‘and four hundred and twenty-one miles.’ [S laughs.] Now you know everything. ‘I looked at the earth slippage. The water pipe is broken below the vegetable garden. I went over to see the Dunnes. Amanda is suffering.’

March the twenty-first. ‘A lovely morning. It is good to be home. Krishnaji spent the day in bed resting. He had his lunch on a tray in bed, but had supper in the living room as usual.’ We used to eat on trays always, and he’d sit in a chair and I’d sit on that long sofa that you’ve slept on…

S: I know it well.

M: …and the television was in front of us. Some geologist contacted me about the slide.

On March twenty-third, ‘Krishnaji resumed his morning exercises and got up for lunch. I trimmed his hair. Sidney Field came to walk with Krishnaji in the afternoon, and I went to the Dunne’s. Felicity and David Hall came to spend the night.’ I didn’t remember that.

March twenty-fourth, ‘I got up early and cooked. At 11 a.m., Krishnaji held a discussion about conditioning with Felicity and David Hall, Erna, Theo, Ruth, Albion, Alan Kishbaugh, and Sidney Field who brought a man named Leslie Stephens. They all stayed to lunch. The Halls stayed on after lunch, and they, Krishnaji, and I walked near Pepperdine. Then Krishnaji had supper in bed.’

Now the next day, which was a Sunday, ‘Krishnaji held the second Malibu discussion with the same group as yesterday. It was on education, and he spoke of a school here in California being necessary because we are in a time of violence, a “Dark Age.” He also said, there is a residue of both good and evil that exists in itself. Then he said, “I am not speculating. I know this.” We must bring up children in goodness, an umbrella of it sheltering them. How are we to have it? We already are in this goodness or we would not be here. Extraordinary turn to this discussion. Sidney Field and Leslie Stephens left. I had asked the Halls only to stay to lunch, but we ended up being nine for lunch, all trustees met and the Halls joined in talking of a school. Erna says the Happy Valley School is rumored to be closing. She wonders if perhaps it can be recuperated for Krishnaji. The Halls are willing to join in running it. Krishnaji asked if we are all willing? Yes. Finally, everyone left. Krishnaji went to bed. I sent Elfriede off and cooked supper.’

The next day, which was the twenty-sixth, ‘a geologist came by to look at the slide. He recommended taking core samples of the earth where it is sliding. Krishnaji and I went to the Dunne’s. He placed his hands on Amanda. Then, we walked down the canyon along the road and home to make supper.’

On the twenty-seventh, ‘we took the Jaguar to be serviced, and a new’ [laughing] ‘wire was put in because a pack rat had chewed the old one.’ Pack rats were another hazard of life in Malibu. While waiting for the Jaguar to be fixed, we went to Marine Land in a borrowed car, had a picnic afterward in the car, came back and shopped in Westwood—books and a jersey for Krishnaji. Then we went to Lindberg’s’—that’s the health food store; he liked to go there. ‘We returned the borrowed car, picked up the Jaguar, and came home.’

The twenty-ninth, ‘was a beautiful day. I did deskwork. We lunched alone. Bill Angelos had an interview with Krishnaji. Sidney Field came and we walked with him, and afterward Krishnaji saw Amanda. I stayed and talked to the Dunnes. In the evening, we played Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, and Krishnaji was very moved.’ [Chuckles.] ‘It is the official end of the war in Vietnam as far as the U.S. is concerned. All our prisoners have been released, and our troops have withdrawn.’

On the thirty-first of March, ‘Krishnaji held a discussion with the Lilliefelts, Ruth Tettemer, Albion Patterson, Alan K., Sidney Field, and Leslie Stephens about a school. They all stayed for lunch. At 4 p.m., Eve Siegel came for an interview with Krishnaji.’ Eve Siegel was Ruth Tettemer’s daughter.

S: Was that group discussion recorded?

M: Oh, yes. It would have been.

S: Let me just write that because that’s not listed here in the archives list.

M: I presume it was recorded, but my diary doesn’t say so.

The next day was April first and ‘we had another discussion with the same group as the day before, and it was on creation. We lunched alone and went to the Dunne’s.’

On the third of April, ‘Krishnaji dictated another To the Schools.’

The next day, ‘Amanda had to go back into the hospital. After lunch, we packed and drove to Ojai and the Lilliefelts for Krishnaji’s weekend talks, arriving at 5 p.m. I made supper and we talked. Krishnaji spoke of a sense he has that the Lilliefelts and I have been sent by something to look after him, and we must be responsible and keep control of the schools and also be prepared to handle whatever this coming tide of energy will bring. We three must keep things in our hands.’

On Saturday the seventh of April, ‘Kishbaugh came by for the Nagra as he is doing the recording. At 11 a.m., Krishnaji gave his first Ojai talk for the year in Libbey Park. There was a large crowd. He and I lunched alone. At 3 p.m., all trustees met with Mr. and Mrs. Robert Ellis about the Ellis’s suggestion for an expansion plan for the work—a “Friends of the KFA” to be formed. They also suggested a Finance Committee, and an office manager; and they suggested the creation of materials for groups. Later, Krishnaji, Erna, Theo, Alan Kishbaugh, and I walked. At supper with Erna and Theo, Krishnaji described the horror of his life with Rosalind Rajagopal and Rajagopal.’

On Sunday, April eighth, ‘Krishnaji gave his second Ojai talk in Libbey Park, a special one; the place of knowledge. Frances McCann, Alan K., and Theo were at lunch. Krishnaji wanted to see Sulfur Mountain as a possible place for a school.’ Do you remember Sulpher Mountain?

S: Yes, I do.

M: ‘So, with Erna too, we all drove up. Agnes Barron, who has held it for the last twenty-five years for Meher Baba, showed us some of it.’ She was an elderly little woman who was holding this piece of land. She bought it for Meher Baba, who was going to come and speak…you know he’s the one who never spoke. And, of course, he never came and he never spoke [S laughs] anywhere, in India or Sulfur Mountain. She’s still there, as far as I know. That afternoon, Krishnaji gave interviews.

On April ninth, ‘there was a KFA trustees meeting about the dates for U.S. talks and about a school. “It should start small,” Krishnaji said. Krishnaji is back as trustee of KFA.’ I wonder what that means?

S: Wasn’t he off it for a while because of the law case or something like that?

M: Yes. I think you’re right. ‘In the afternoon, he gave an interview to Priscilla Teiry, David Young, Mrs. Lee Eldridge, the Blackburns, Jim Dixon, and Jim Wallace.’ That’s the way he used to just give interviews. ‘The Blackburns immediately misinterpreted what Krishnaji said to them to Ruth Tettemer.’ [Laughs.]

The next day, ‘Krishnaji spoke to the students at Thacher School. Ingram Smith taped it on our Nagra. The Hookers gave a lunch for Krishnaji in the Ranch House Restaurant Garden. Also at the lunch were the Lilliefelts, Frances McCann, Ingram Smith, Albion, Ruth, Robert Ellis, and his daughter. Afterward, Krishnaji and I drove, following Theo, to a Mercedes mechanic named Dieter…’ Oh, this is where Dieter comes in! Dieter’s the one who’s looked after the cars all these years. ‘…who has a garage in Oxnard. We discussed the logistics of what to do with the Mercedes Krishnaji has to buy from Moser. I am to buy it from Krishnaji. We came home to Malibu. Amanda is still in the hospital.’

S: Why were you buying the Mercedes from Krishnaji?

M: We’d ordered it in Switzerland, and we’d ordered it with, I think, American specifications. Originally, you see, it began with Enrique Biascoechea gift of the little two-seater Mercedes to Krishnaji. Then he wanted one a little bit bigger so four people could sit in it. So we ordered the slightly larger one, but he didn’t like the way the next model looked of that year. So, Mr. Moser in Thun, Switzerland persuaded Mercedes in Stuttgart to postpone the order.

S: Yes. I remember all this, but I was just interested to know why you ended up buying it from Krishnaji.

M: Well, somebody had to pay the rest of it.

S: And for some reason it was better in your name than in his?

M: I don’t really remember, to tell you the truth. So, it was technically mine, [S laughs] but spiritually and otherwise it was Krishnaji’s.

S: I know, I know.

M: Krishnaji only had two cars since, I don’t know, the ’20S: one was the original Biascoechea little silver one, and then this one, the Green Beauty.

On April eleventh, ‘Krishnaji gave an interview to a Los Angeles Times reporter, Bela Stumbo. We lunched alone.’ As I recall, the resulting article was not interesting.

‘Krishnaji slept all afternoon. Miranda Dunne came over briefly. And then Krishnaji and I walked around the lawn and weeded a bit.’

The next day, ‘I went to town for Krishnaji’s French visa and income tax things, but was home in time for lunch. Then we drove to Ojai and the Lilliefelts to spend a second weekend for Krishnaji’s public talks. All four of us took a long walk around by Thacher Road.’ Well, I took ill from pain in esophagus, well, anyway, I was…cured.

On the thirteenth, ‘Krishnaji saw Roger Wrather’—that’s Gaby Blackburn’s son by her first marriage to an Indian man—‘and he also saw Mark Lee’s children. Rested in the afternoon. We read the interrogatory put together by lawyer Cohen and sent to Rajagopal, and met with Ruth and Albion about the school. Afterward, we walked in the late afternoon. Krishnaji now is talking about a cottage we could build in Ojai, pull down Arya Vihara[1] and build a new one on that land.’

S: Mm, hm. [Laughs.]

M: [laughs] Goodness, that’s heresy. Good heavens. Couldn’t do that. But…


Editor’s Note: For Krishnaji to have thought of building on the land of Arya Vihara, there must have been a strong sense that the KFA was going to recover at least some of the vast acreage in Ojai that had been given for Krishnaji’s work, but which had been transformed into property that Rajagopal controlled. 


The next day, ‘Krishnaji gave his third Ojai public talk of that year in Libbey Park. Alan Kishbaugh came to lunch. In the afternoon, I talked to Robert Logan, a “cinematographer” who wants to do a documentary on Krishnaji. His plan is expensive. Krishnaji came in on the end of it. Later, Krishnaji, Erna, Theo, Alan K., and I went for a walk.’ Nothing came of that expensive documentary plan, obviously.

On April fifteenth, ‘Krishnaji gave his fourth and final Ojai talk. In the afternoon, Krishnaji held a meeting about a school. Present were Erna and Theo, Ruth, Albion, Alan K. Felicity and David Hall, and Robert Ellis. There was a great deal of discussion. It finally ended after 6:30 p.m., and Krishnaji and I drove home to Malibu, followed by Alan K., who stayed for supper.’

The next day, ‘Krishnaji’s head was hurting. He stayed in quietly all day. The David Halls came by at 4 p.m. to discuss a school brochure, and a scientist meeting at Brockwood. I went over to see Amanda.’

On the seventeenth, ‘Krishnaji dictated another To the Schools. There was endless back and forth with Robert Ellis about the Bela Stumbo article. She insists on mentioning the lawsuit.’

The next day, ‘I went to town on visa matters and such. Mr. and Mrs. Blau and Mr. and Mrs. Pollock to tea, and we talked about a school.’ This is complicated, but this is worth explaining for posterity. Dr. Pollock was married to Mrs. Pollock [both chuckle], now let me get this right, Mrs. Pollock was the daughter of Louis and Erma Zalk, and Erma Zalk was the sister of Rosalind Rajagopal. And the Pollocks were friends of the Blaus.

S: Right.

M: And Dr. Pollock was on the Happy Valley School board, and he was trying to get Krishnaji back into Happy Valley, so that was being endlessly discussed. I mistrusted the whole affair, and nothing came of it, but there was a lot of talk about it.

On the nineteenth, ‘Dr. Alan Anderson from San Diego State, Albion Patterson and his son Phillip, and Alan Kishbaugh came to lunch to discuss Krishnaji doing videotaped conversation with Anderson next February. Krishnaji and Alan K. walked. And I went over to the Dunne’s.’

On Saturday, April twenty-first, ‘I started packing. We lunched alone. At 3 p.m., Erna, Theo, Ruth, Albion, and Kishbaugh came. The Stumbo article is in tomorrow’s Times, and it’s rather trashy. We discussed the school and fundraising, etcetera. Evelyne and Lou Blau joined us at 4:15 p.m. and we continued the discussion of work until almost 7 p.m.’

On April twenty-third, ‘We got up at 5 a.m. At 7 a.m., Alan K. came. Krishnaji rode with him, and I went with Miranda in the VW to the airport. We took a TWA flight, which was delayed an hour for a tire, but finally took off a little after 10 a.m. We got to New York, where a car met us, and we reached the Ritz Tower by 8 a.m.’ The Ritz Tower, as I think I said before, was where my father owned a small flat that he used when he came to the United States. In the meantime, the Ritz Tower would rent it, like a semi-hotel, so that when he wasn’t there, he got rental for it. It was alright, with a sitting room, a tiny kitchenette that was a about a yard wide, and two bedrooms each with its own bathroom.

The next day, the twenty-fourth, ‘Narasimhan came to see Krishnaji at 9 a.m. Krishnaji and I both went to see Dr. Wolf at 11:30 a.m.’ He’s the old German doctor who did all that business with the cells that Bud talks about.

‘We lunched at Lafayette.’ That was a very good restaurant, French restaurant, then. It lost business because it made a terrible mistake. It wouldn’t let women come in trousers, and it turned away Jacqueline Kennedy.

S: Oh, mistake. [Laughs.]

M: And pretty soon, Lafayette was no more. [Both laugh.] But it was nice. It was small and very good food. I bought Krishnaji a Vuitton bag to carry on the plane. Krishnaji had his hair cut.

‘We went back the next day to Dr. Wolf and both got good reports from the tests he took yesterday. And I had an implantation.’ That was the cells. ‘We shopped a little and lunched at Giovanni’s.’ That was another nice restaurant.

S: Did Krishnaji have any implants?

M: No, I did.

S: But he later did, didn’t he?

M: Later, yes.

S: Did you feel any effect from it?

M: No. [Chuckles.] Not discernible. Well, it was supposed to give you energy or something. It was also supposed to head off illnesses, you know, what you’re ailing in, or deficient in, it’s supposed to supply.

‘We had lunch at Giovanni’s, which is an Italian restaurant and is nice. Erna telephoned that Rajagopal has sent us a fifty-four-question interrogatory. Erna will send it to Brockwood. At 7 p.m., we took an Air France flight to Paris.’

S: To Paris?

M: Yes.

S: Why did he go to Paris?

M: I don’t know, don’t remember. [Laughing.] We’ll see.

On the twenty-sixth, ‘We landed at Orly at 8:30 a.m. Took a taxi to the Plaza Athénée, where we had our usual rooms. As we’d had no sleep on the plane, Krishnaji rested all day. Bud and Lisa’—that’s my brother and sister-in-law—‘are at Father’s apartment on Cardinal Lemoine[2], which is not yet finished remodeling, but they can stay there. They lunched with me in the Régence. Krishnaji has severe cramps in his right lower leg muscle, so severe that he had almost fainted. I put hot wet towels on it, and it subsided. We had supper in the rooms.’

The next day, the twenty-seventh of April, ‘I went with Krishnaji to Lobb and Charvet. In the Régence, we had Marcelle Bondoneau and Mar de Manziarly to lunch. There was much talk of the early days with Mar’s family. Krishnaji was asking what the young Krishnamurti was like. Sacha has been taken to the American Hospital, so we went there in the afternoon with Mar. Sacha looked grey and seemed unaware of how ill he is.’ Krishnaji was alone with him for about ten minutes, while Mar and I talked to the nurse. The results of the test won’t be known till Monday. Krishnaji and I left. Krishnaji said to me “Never let me be in a hospital. I would rather die quietly at home.” This was the first time he has been in a hospital in many years. The atmosphere disturbed him. We met Nadia Kossiakof at the hotel and talked awhile. Then Krishnaji and I dined in our rooms.’

S: Shall we end here?

M: Yes.

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[1] Arya Vihara is a house next to Pine Cottage, Krishnaji’s first little cottage in Ojai. Krishnaji’s brother died in Arya Vihara in 1925, and the Rajagopals lived there for many years. Today it provides guest accommodations to those wishing to visit and study Krishnaji’s teachings. Back to text.

[2] La Tour D’Argent restaurant is on the top floor of a building on the corner of Quai de la Tournelle and Rue du Cardinal Lemoine. Mary’s father’s apartment was the floor beneath the restaurant, and the entrance for the apartments in that building is on Rue du Cardinal Lemoine. The entrance for the restaurant is only for the restaurant, and is directly on the corner, but claims the address of 15 Quai de la Tournelle. Mary and her brother Bud both inherited the apartment when their father died, but Mary didn’t want it, so Bud bought her out. Back to text.