Issue #40

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Issue 40—February 27, 1976 to April 26, 1976


This issue contains a recalled discussion between Mary and me that occurred off-mic, and this is interesting because it is one of the few examples of a great many discussions we had off-mic. The recording took place in July of 2004, so this is after twelve years of our having these on-going discussions; and we were still discussing this same topic which we had even begun discussing before we started our recording: how much of Mary and her reactions should be part of our recorded discussions. If she had had her way, she would have been invisible in these accounts, and I was always insisting that without her, there would be no account.

She folds into this discussion Krishnaji’s sensitivity to people, and his need to be protected; and the very intense form this took at the end of his life.

Mary tells us of very interesting discussions that occurred at Arya Vihara, and which were recorded, but are still not available on line.

This issue also sees a very interesting approach Krishnaji proposes for dealing with a difficult child at the Ojai school.

The Memoirs of Mary Zimbalist: Issue #40

Mary: I think I’ve gone through where he was describing what happened to him on February twenty-seventh, 1976.

Scott: Yes. I think it was just the very end when we ran out of tape. Some…

M: …demented lady.

S: Right, the demented lady.

M: Well, anyway, she was in New York and we had not heard from her since the morning in Gstaad when at 6 a.m. she was outside the chalet, and Krishnaji had me go out and do something about the demented letter she had sent asking him to marry her. [Chuckles.] ‘The telegram was venomous. Erna and Theo lunched with us, and later we walked around the block.’ That’s that day.

S: May I just stop and ask a question here?

M: Sure.

S: It has to do with our discussion yesterday. I was thinking about this last night. It has to do with what Krishnaji said about “the face.”

M: Yes.

S: When did Krishnaji first mention “the face” to you?

M: I can’t give you an accurate date, because he had talked about “the face,” but when he talked about “the face” and when I saw it isn’t in my present memory unless it comes to light in these discussions, because it just happened. I think I told you yesterday that he once said…

S: That he wished he could see it.

M: He wished he could see it.

S: And Krishnaji asked me about it because I’d seen it. And when I first saw it I thought it was just my imagination…

M: I know. You’ve told me.

S: …playing a trick. And it was…so…

M: No. We’ve both seen it, and he spoke of it. But when it was…

S: Okay, alright.

M: It may turn up in reading these discussions.

S: Alright. That’s fine. Now, the twenty-eighth.

M: February twenty-eighth, nothing much happened. ‘I typed letters, Krishnaji had a discussion at Arya Vihara for teachers, parents, etcetera, which I taped. It doesn’t say who was there. Mr. Schwartz’—that’s the curtain man—‘installed some of the curtains for the upstairs apartment[1] and the carpet was installed too. Time is moving on, and the Bohms will be here in a fortnight. Krishnaji held a teacher-parent-etcetera discussion at Arya Vihara, which I taped.’

So, the next day is Sunday the twenty-ninth. ‘I typed letters. Evelyne Blau went to see Rosalind about a piece of land with a ranch house on Besant Road, which she and Lou would like to buy for their daughter. Rosalind talked in a dozen directions in her confusion, and it went nowhere. “You can’t deal with her,” said Evelyne. Cynthia Wood and Evelyne lunched with us, and Cynthia Wood told Krishnaji afterwards that she was willing to become a trustee. Krishnaji will now bring it up with the other trustees, who have not yet been consulted.’ He did that on his own.

‘At 3 p.m., Krishnaji held a private discussion in the cottage on thought, realities, that of nature, of objects created by thought (machines, etcetera) and that of thought itself (ideas, imagination). Understanding the illusion of thought is truth. Krishnaji in this began a dialogue with himself, and said, “Since you won’t question, I will do it,” and he did both ends of dialogue. “I say to my friend, etc.” He was pleased with this device, and in the evening said he was going to do that in future discussions.’ [M and S both chuckle.] ‘He is annoyed with Patterson. Not annoyed, he said, but “I’m jolted” by him and his comments. He feels Patterson is interrupting, and has “the beginnings of a high priest.” Also, Krishnaji said he has been thinking of Rosalind and Rajagopal and no longer thinks an attempt to help them “repent,” undo the evil they have done, will work. “I think I will leave it alone.” Evelyne’s daughter and Mark’s meeting with Rosalind last week seem to have brought the picture of the same petty, conniving woman. He described her anger when he used to heal. “Why do you do that!?” she would say.’ And her walking out when he would talk to the Happy Valley teachers. She didn’t come to discussions. ‘“She was too stupid to understand,” and he retold her query when The Commentaries were published, “Did you write that? You couldn’t have. It must’ve been Rajagopal.”’

S: So, she questioned whether Krishnaji wrote The Commentaries?

M: Yes, yes, she couldn’t imagine his having written them. ‘Priscilla Teiry told Erna that after many conversations with people in the Valley, including Martha Crego, she thinks Rosalind’s and Rajagopal’s aim has been to destroy Krishnaji and the teachings. Krishnaji was struck, somehow, by her thinking this, and said that evening that it was probably true. He came in before going to bed and told me to write down, “When there is understanding of reality, there is infinite order, and love and justice are inherent in reality.”’

The next day is the first of March. ‘Erna and Theo lunched with us. Krishnaji feels Albion Patterson is becoming an interpreter. He had Ruth come over and talked to her about it. She suggested Krishnaji talk to Patterson. We drove home to Malibu. On the way, Krishnaji said his head was bad most of the time now. It had been that morning. Then he said, “I feel like doing something extravagant. What shall we do, Maria?”’ [S chuckles.]

‘I replied, “Shall we go to a movie? Go dancing? To Las Vegas!”’ [S laughs.]

‘Krishnaji laughed and said, “That would be punishment.”’

‘I asked, “What would be extravagant?”’

‘He replied, “I don’t know.” He was tired after supper.’ [M laughs.]

On the second of March, ‘my brother telephoned about business things. I went to town on errands and had my tooth filled. Krishnaji rested and was waiting in the driveway as I arrived home at 4 p.m. As the rain began, we couldn’t walk, but tried a new gadget for doing a headstand on a shoulder stool.’ Do you remember that thing?

S: Yes, I remember that.

M: The third of March is short. ‘Desk, work on house costs, telephoned Ruth Carter’—that’s the real estate woman—‘and she came to estimate the value of the house. Krishnaji and I walked on the beach.’

On the fourth, ‘my brother telephoned on business matters. I spoke also to my stepfather, Wooge, and mother. My cousin is better, still in the hospital, but able to take food by mouth. Worked all day on the Malibu house costs. Carol Rapf’—that’s another real estate person—‘came to give an appraisal. Krishnaji and I waxed the green car.’ We seem to be forever waxing cars!

S: I know, I know. I think that was a form of entertainment. [Both chuckle.]

M: So, we go to March fifth. ‘We were off at 11 a.m. with Krishnaji driving. After a while, he said, “The curious thing is happening. A new thing is being added to it. This morning it was so easy—it has become quite ordinary—it is there, nothingness, a vast space of nothingness. The new thing I felt a few days—something—that word sacred; something totally holy—sacred—I don’t know what it is.” We came around the big rock, and then there was Topa Topa, white with snow. Krishnaji said, “What a country this is, real California. I wish I could remember what it was like in 1922.” Then, “Darling Maria, we must have that house a jewel, austere, holy, nothing extravagant, showy.” There was a pause. Then, “Thank you for having me here.”’

‘Last night, I went to bed tired and distracted by searching in papers of Sam’s estate for something showing the value in the inheritance of the Malibu house, which I will need as a tax loss. I never found it, and the papers were sad. Krishnaji must have felt it, for he said in the car that he had felt very close to me, and when he spoke of the Bohms’ arrival next week and my going to the airport, he said he must come too. “I must be with you as much as possible.”’

‘I asked, “Do you feel a danger to me?”’

‘He replied, “No. But it is good for me to be with you.”’

‘At lunch with Erna and Theo in the cottage, Krishnaji talked about the house we will build and how someday we may live only here and Brockwood. Not India, he said. He asked if, “When we have K & R[2],” if Rajagopal’s names can be removed from The Commentaries? “It doesn’t belong there.”’

‘He mentioned again that Priscilla Teiry has remarked that the two Rs were out to destroy him and his teachings. And then he said, “I think that is so.” Then, he told Erna not to worry about anything—it is all worked out. Everything will come right. He laughed as he expounded on this exuberantly.’

‘At 4 p.m. he saw Mark, David Moody, Chuck Rusch, Katie Marx, David Greene about how to handle a child who doesn’t respond to two approaches they use, creating an atmosphere and by dialogue. The child is self-centered, gets attention by behaving badly. Krishnaji said, “Can you move his attention from himself by creating another attention which he will want, instead of giving him the personal attention which he wants, you move his attention away from him with the same intensity, divert his energy.”’

‘“I will talk to 8,000 people in Bombay about things that are the opposite of what they want. This is my problem, how to reach them. I point out something that is true, get them to look at it, not as opposed to something else. I appeal to their unconscious.”’

‘“There may be an unconscious movement for change. And this may affect parents to send the child to the school. The same quality may affect the child.”’

‘“There may be an unconscious demand, urge, that we cannot go on living as we have in violence.”’

‘“So, there are two things, to direct his attention and talking to his unconscious.”’

‘“You mustn’t put him in the position of resisting. He may be here because something else sent him, not his parents. Therefore, my responsibility is much greater.”’

S: So, Krishnaji is saying that…first of all, not to resist needing attention.

M: No, but to divert the attention.

S: But to divert it. And Krishnaji uses as an analogy what he does with the 8,000 people in Bombay.

M: That’s right. Yes.

S: And he feels that people may have an unconscious wish…

M: …to be different.

S: …to be different because things are just not working the way they are, and people know that. And then, he further goes on to say that the student who comes to one of the schools may be “sent”…

M: …by some unknown something.

S: Right, and not really sent by the parents, although ostensibly sent by the parents…

M: Yes, but something else.

S: There may be some other either intelligence or force…

M: Yes. And, therefore, his responsibility is much greater.

S: Right. And the educator’s responsibility is much greater because of what sent the child.

M: But, his, Krishnaji’s, responsibility is involved in this.

S: Right.

M: On the sixth of March. ‘At 11 a.m. there was a meeting with the architects. Gammel and’—somebody—that’s the architects—‘presented drawings of the administration building and residence of director of the school. The Sweeton family, who built the garages at Brockwood, are here, and Al, the father, sat in on the meeting. Everyone lunched together at Arya Vihara. They resumed the meeting in the afternoon, and we walked late.’

Saturday, the seventh of March. ‘Evelyne and Cynthia Wood to lunch. Krishnaji held a discussion at 3 p.m. with the usual group, which I taped. It was an absorbing one.’

The next day, ‘I shopped for supplies for the guest flat and the Bohms’ arrival. Krishnaji talked again to Mark Lee, Katie Marx, and David Moody about children, and then cause and effect. After lunch with Erna and Theo in the cottage, Krishnaji saw Albion Patterson, alone at first, and faced him with his speaking against Erna Lilliefelt and against himself saying a religious leader should be gentle and patient. Patterson said, “You are impatient.”’

‘Krishnaji replied, “I’m not impatient, but you repeat over and over things I’ve already said.” He told Patterson he criticizes BrockwoodPark and the OjaiSchool to others. Patterson denied it all and said it’s just his way of talking—hyperbole, exaggeration, picked up from his years in Latin American countries. Krishnaji told him that he was setting himself up as an interpreter of the teachings. When he denied saying things about the school and the Lilliefelts, Krishnaji called them, and they all had it out.’

S: So, Krishnaji called in the Lilliefelts, and they had it out with Albion?

M: Yes. ‘Afterward, we drove them to Malibu.’ That’s interesting.

On the ninth of March, ‘There was a cable from Balasundaram: Vasanta Vihar, by court order, now belongs to the K. Trust, Madras. Erna read a letter to Krishnaji from the prime minister of Canada’s wife, Mrs. Margaret Trudeau, about her wish to attend the scientists’ conference as an observer. I spoke to her in Ottawa; she will come under her maiden name of Sinclair. Krishnaji and I drove to town, had a picnic lunch in the car in Beverly Hills, did errands, and he got his hair cut.’

On the tenth, there isn’t much: another real estate appraisal, Krishnaji and I walked on the beach, and we stopped by briefly at the Dunne’s.

On March eleventh, ‘I telephoned my stepfather on his eighty-seventh birthday. My mother isn’t well. I worked on the house costs all morning. After lunch with Krishnaji, I went to town to Lou Blau’s office, where he, Evelyne, Erna, Theo, and I discussed KFA finances, also, my buying the land.’ This was a device that Lou thought up to try to minimize my capital gain tax when I sold the Malibu place. Lou was explaining all that to me. So we discussed my buying this land, which I did, actually, before enlarging the cottage. ‘Lou thinks I should buy the whole of the McAndrew Road property, including Arya Vihara. Erna will have it appraised. I came home late. I found Krishnaji waiting in the dark at the turn in the driveway in his white bathrobe…’ [Long pause.] ‘It shook my heart,’ it says here.

S: How nice. Why did you hesitate before reading that last part?

M: Turn off the recorder for a minute.

[Tape cuts out, then back on.]

S: Alright. So, we’ve just been saying that you are reluctant to have personal things in these discussions. And I’m saying that there are things about the personal relationship which are wonderful to know and important to know. And you brought up the issue, for instance, of Krishnaji sometimes needing someone close to him as a kind of protection, almost.

M: Yes. He spoke in terms, for instance, when he was forever saying to me that I must look after my health because I had to outlive him…

S: Yes.

M: …and that was a sort of duty he expected of me. And I felt strongly that my role was a protective one to smooth his life as much as I could, to protect him, to serve him in whatever he needed, see that he had the right food, and he was in the right place so that it would be comfortable and clean and all the things that you do for a person; and that he wouldn’t have had unless it was done. And I happened to be the one there to do it. And he did seem to need…he was very sensitive of the presence…

S: …of different people.

M: …of different people.

S: Yes, yes.

M: And certain people, it was very bad; he didn’t want…that.

S: Yes.

M: And other people, he was sensitive to the good of whatever that was.

S: Yes. Now, for instance, you brought up before, when we had the tape recorder turned off, that when Krishnaji was dying, he wanted us…

M: Yes…

S: …and he did not want to be left alone even for a minute.

M: No.

S: And it’s not that he was frightened.

M: No. Never.

S: So, it was nothing like that, but there was something about people who…I don’t know… who loved him, or I don’t know what…so you and I were there…

M: Yes.

S: …and never left him alone. And there was some type of protection in that.

M: Yes. And he said, we’ll get to it much later, but you remember that when he came back with you and Parchure from India, and I met him at the airport in the green car.

S: Yes.

M: And he came with me. And when I got into the car, he said that in the next twenty-four hours I mustn’t leave him at all, because it’s…it’s…

S: Touch and go.

M: …touch and go. He didn’t use the words “touch and go,” but it was necessary, as though he was close to death, and the fact that you and I both, as I recall, slept on the floor in his room…

S: Yes, yes. One of us was always here.

M: Yes.

S: Twenty-four hours. But now, Mary, I want to come back to this because…and again, this funny thing, and I don’t know if this will come up, but when I started giving Krishnaji massage, and I started on his hands, if I remember, and Krishnaji wasn’t sure, and this is just to say how sensitive he is to presence, he wasn’t sure his body could stand my touch.

M: What did he mean by that?

S: He wanted to just try it in a small way because he just didn’t…I think he was just so sensitive. Anyway, it turned out that my touch was fine. And so, then I continued, but it was just, even though I had the relationship with him that I did, there was just some peculiar, call it a chemical thing, you know, just some kind of a personal chemistry or something.

M: Yes.

S: And part of that is why it is…you see, your relationship with him was so singular, and so special, which is why I know that you are reluctant to…well, you’re reluctant to talk about yourself full stop. [Chuckles.] Which makes this project all very difficult!

M: No one’s going to believe that if they listen to any of this interminable saga!

S: But we happen to know it’s true. So, but that also means that you can’t take out, I don’t think, your own responses. So when you see, you drive around the corner, and there’s Krishnaji in the dark in his white bathrobe…

M: He’s standing there.

S: He’s standing there to meet you, and your heart kind of leaps, it’s just…it’s wonderful, it’s as it should be. And it’s also…

M: I was so touched by it.

S: Of course! And the fact that you were touched by it speaks mountains about the wonderful relationship that you had looking after him, that he was able to live and enjoy. And so, anyway, my plea, again, is not to take things out unless you absolutely have to. And that you don’t have to worry about people thinking, “Oh, she’s just self-indulgent, or sentimental, or sloppy, or…you know…too romantic…or…

M: I know that when I wrote ages ago and told Mary L., I guess, and she wrote it, that when he fainted in the car, the first time it ever happened, he was sitting on my right, I was driving, and he fell sideways into my lap. People were shocked that I’d said that.

S: You see, I think that’s absolutely horrible.

M: What was I suppose to do? I mean, he fell over in a faint.

S: Exactly.

M: And, where was he going to go?

S: Exactly. Stop at a forty-five-degree angle? [Laughs.] That’s silly. So, I think that you mustn’t censor yourself out of worry of other people’s reactions. Now, if there’s things that you don’t want anyone to know, that’s fine. But people are going to be stupid and have reactions to anything. You know, so anyway, we can go on. That’s just my little…[M chuckles]…alright, my little rant.

M: Good.

So, the next day was March twelfth. ‘The architects Moore and Rusch came at 11 a.m. and with two floor plans, neither of which we liked. But they are turning one of the plans around, and it’s beginning to take shape. The new building is separate from the cottage. They lunched with us, and we continued to work until it was time for Krishnaji and me to go to the airport to meet Saral and David Bohm, having flown in from London. We brought them back to Malibu for the night.’

The next day, ‘Krishnaji, David, and Saral, and I drove to Ojai at 9 a.m. We installed them in the just-enlarged guest apartment. At 11 o’clock, there was a trustees meeting of KFA. Cynthia Wood is elected as the ninth trustee, and she attended. The meeting lasted all day, with time out for lunch at Arya Vihara. I absented myself while the board considered selling me all of the McAndrew Road property, so that I can enlarge the cottage for Krishnaji’s use and my own during my lifetime. Krishnaji spoke for this, and he later told me that Erna was twice in tears explaining my help to the Foundation.’ That was nice of her. ‘Everyone agreed that it could be sold to me. The meeting ended after 5 p.m., and we all went for a walk.’ That was nice of Erna. She wasn’t an outwardly emotional person.

S: No. She wasn’t.

M: March fourteenth, ‘Krishnaji spent the morning in bed, but talked to David Bohm of what the center should be. The Bohms and the Lilliefelts lunched with us in the cottage. At 3 p.m., Krishnaji held the Sunday discussion with the Bohms attending, and which I taped. Krishnaji said in the discussion, “All causation is mechanical,” and “All thought leads to sorrow.” We had a long walk down Thacher Road.’

March fifteenth, ‘I typed letters all morning. We lunched at Arya Vihara. Then, Krishnaji and I drove home to Malibu.’

The next day, ‘I got up at 5 a.m. to work on income tax. Went to town alone and to the dentist. Then I went to the airport to meet Sunanda Patwardhan and her husband and bring them back to stay at Malibu.’

March seventeenth, ‘Up at 5 a.m. again, and finished income tax data. After lunch with Krishnaji and the Patwardhans, I went to Bamberger’—that’s the accountant—‘with it. I was home in time for supper, years younger because it was done.” [Both chuckle.] Krishnaji came up the driveway to meet me as I drove in seeming to know I’d be there.’ [Seems to make an aside:] He would know, you know, when people were arriving. He did that once with Alain Naudé in New York. We were walking around a reservoir, and as we came near where the apartment was, he said, “Alain’s just arriving.” And he was. We couldn’t see it but he knew. ‘Krishnaji and the Patwardhans had walked on the lawn. I telephoned my cousin who is still in hospital in Boston.’

March eighteenth. ‘We drove to Ojai, taking the Patwardhans with us. We lunched at Arya Vihara. While Krishnaji rested, I did errands in the village. A conference table was set up in the Lilliefelt’s long living room very nicely, and the scientists began to arrive for the scientists’ conference. Krishnaji and I had a quiet supper in the cottage.’

On the nineteenth. ‘The first day of the scientists’ conference began at 10:30 a.m. David Bohm was the chairman and asked Krishnaji to speak to begin with. The theme of the discussion is: In a disintegrating society, what is right action for survival. Krishnaji said the essence of religion is to discover what is truth and reality. When that doesn’t exist, there is degeneration. The transformation of the individual is the transformation of the world, using the word “individual” in the sense of whole, indivisible. During the discussion, Sudarshan asked: Is there such a thing as another state? Krishnaji replied, “I would say there is but not to be experienced.” Krishnaji said that all thinking leads to suffering; all religion is based on thinking; does death lead to immortality; can a human being learn what death is; a state of timelessness? He said, “A man who suffers lives in darkness.” He said there is a quality of mind which is free from thought; everything based on thought is time-binding; time is the essence of suffering. If thought spills over into timelessness, then it is illusion. So, thought must see its limitations and stop there, without any effort, compulsion. If I see the limitation, then begins real meditation; then, I can explore what suffering is.” If I see the whole, it is not suffering.” Concerning thought leading to suffering, David Bohm said that you cannot control what mathematical thought will lead to. Thought cannot take place in an isolated context, and you cannot control the context.’

‘Krishnaji easily dominated the meeting, without wishing to. Most of the group was silent. He spoke with force and eloquence. In forceful emphasis, he made a gesture of his fist with his thumbs up, moving out and down. The morning meeting stopped at 12:30 p.m. and moved to Arya Vihara, where the Hookers and Michael Krohnen had lunch on the patio ready. I washed dishes. Margaret Trudeau, as Ms. Sinclair, arrived having walked from Ojai.’ Walked from Ojai? ‘Erna and Theo asked her to stay with them. She attended the afternoon session. Very blue eyes, creamy skin, listened attentively, and took notes in a small book. Krishnaji, Erna, and I walked later.’

The next day was ‘the second day of the scientists’ conference, Dr. Anthony Wilden, a professor at Simon Fraser University in Canada, arrived with a young woman and man. Erna explained that no more observers could attend, but since they were there, they could stay but only sitting by the door. Wilden seized a folding chair and stormed in, planting it and his girl just behind Krishnaji, next to Margaret Trudeau, saying, “Hello, Maggie,” to her. He then went to his place at the table and sat looking baleful.’ [Chuckles.] ‘Krishnaji began the conference, talking about the mind, and consciousness not separate from the mind. After a short time, Wilden made a lengthy, scornful speech about all present consciousness is the result of socio-economic conditions since 1720-something. There was no ego, apparently, before that!’ [Laughs.] All of this was recorded; it must be somewhere in the archives.

S: I’m sure it is.

M: [laughs] ‘No ego apparently before that, and we were all middle-class materialists. That was what should be discussed, etcetera. His behavior continued, increasingly scornful, rude, and he told David Bohm, who disagreed with one of his statements, that he didn’t know a god-damned thing about what the hell he was talking about.’ [S laughs.] He was a charmer! ‘Krishnaji was gentle, firm, and tried to lead him into reason but without much success. Luckily, he was not present at the afternoon session. Margaret T said she had never met him, and no one ever called her Maggie.’ [Chuckles.] ‘Seems she was interviewed on television some weeks ago, and when asked about influences in her life, she mentioned Krishnamurti. Wilden heard, telephoned her saying he was going to a Krishnaji conference and invited her. She wanted to come, but was uncertain about the invitation, hence her letter to Krishnamurti which caused me to telephone her and clear her.’

‘In the afternoon, it was calmer. Krishnaji spoke of the part of the mind that is mechanical, because that which has cause is always mechanical. Is there a part of that, that is not mechanical? He said: Understanding, pleasure, and ending fear and sorrow is necessary to go beyond thought. He asked if living without ego is possible. Can we act without conclusions, images; can we prevent image-making, and wipe away ones already there? Thought is always limited, and because of that, creates images. He said: If I were whole, I would be the whole of mankind, the global sense of a human being. “It is insanity that creates images,” (in the sense of whole equals sane, healthy, holy). A question was raised of why perception doesn’t always work the first time. Krishnaji asked if we are conditioned to the process of gradual seeing, and if we gave conflict attention, but we don’t. “We are not willing to give our lives for this.” We are concerned with our own clarity, not clarity itself. If you listen with no resistance, if there is no barriers, you will have it, you’ve seen it. “In total listening, the problem is finished.”’

‘We rationalize first, and then try to perceive. Perceive is direct insight. “Let the question answer you, not you the question.” Perception is timeless, correct action is always timeless.’

March twenty-first, ‘was the third day, Anthony Wilden turned up for the morning session. He met Margaret Trudeau and spoke to her aggressively, so that when she came in, she was shaking, etcetera, and in tears. “I’m frightened,” she said to me, and before I could speak, the conference began. Krishnaji commenced by asking, “What is correct action?” Not born of ideas. Is there perception without idea? And what follows when there is action in people? Wilden listened only for only a few minutes, and then began a tirade about his having been met by violence when he arrived yesterday—he was told his friend couldn’t attend. Others had wives there. Margaret Trudeau spoke up and said she thought she was his observer, and he had invited her. I said he had brought two people uninvited. Because of the size of the room, we had been unable to admit them. Many who wanted to attend, couldn’t, etc. He said he didn’t know the man who was there. I said he had come with them, and that he, Wilden, was here as a guest of the Foundation and was asked to go along with the circumstances provided. He ranted on, refusing to calm down, began stuffing his papers into a briefcase, putting on his jacket, and shook a book at everybody, saying something about: if you want to learn, read this! It was his own book.’ [S laughs.] ‘And then defiantly pulled out a cigarette and lit it. David pointed out that no smoking had been requested. “That’s what I mean,” said Wilden, then, threw up his hands and said, “Let me go!” There was a small chorus of, “Well, go!”’ [both chuckle] ‘went up, and he left. Erna drove him to Ojai, and it took most of the rest of the morning for the conference to settle down. Shainberg, it turns out, had thumbed through one of his books, and from that got the impression that he was interested in Krishnaji. On that sliver, Shainberg had invited Wilden.’

S: Oh dear. So this was Shainberg’s doing?

M: Yes, Shainberg’s doing. [Laughs and S laughs, too.] I’d forgotten some of that.

S: Somehow that sounds like David Shainberg. [Laughs.]

M: Yes.

Now I only have entries in the little book until sometime in April, so each day will be short.

S: That’s better than nothing.

M: So, the twenty-second. ‘The fourth day of the conference. Globus beforehand proposed to Krishnaji that Margaret Trudeau be admitted as a participant. This led to all observers being considered as participants. The tables were rearranged. Someone urged more discussion of each person’s problems.’

So, we go to the twenty-third, the fifth day of the conference. ‘Globus and Franklin tried to reduce it to personal discussion of “violence” at the conference, causing the departure of…’ Somebody with a name beginning with D—don’t remember his name.

The sixth day of the conference was on March twenty-fourth. ‘David Bohm came to the cottage to talk to Krishnaji about Globus and how to proceed.’ Globus was the one who—he insisted on wearing a hat of power! [S laughs, then M laughs.] ‘The meeting began with Krishnaji discussing silence. And then fifteen minutes of silence ensued. Then, Krishnaji asked if Globus, who had raised personal things, wanted to go into that. Globus said he had seen that it was in him, and so the discussion was released and went on to some extraordinary depth by Krishnaji. All ended favorably and warmly. In the afternoon, most of the scientists left, including Margaret Trudeau.’ All that will have to be listened to in the archives because it was recorded.

S: But, the whole conference was a shambles, it seems.

M: It was a shambles.

S: The 1974 scientists’ conference at Brockwood was really well-behaved and…

M: Compared to this!

S: A great success. Yes, this is a shambles.

M: Shambles! [S laughs heartily.] Well, you see, you had two: Globus was a psychiatrist, so I assume, though, I don’t remember directly whether it was Shainberg’s suggestion that Globus come, or what, but I suspect it was because they’re both psychiatrists.

S: The first conference at Brockwood was arranged by David Bohm. And this second one was arranged largely by Shainberg?

M: Well, I’m guessing. I don’t really remember who invited who. I mean, it was David who was the originator of having scientists’ conferences. And, of course, he and David Shainberg were friends. So, the cast of characters emanated from one or both of them.

S: Right, okay. Alright, let’s go on.

M: We didn’t know any of these people. We knew the KFA people.

S: Yes.

M: So, that’s what happened! [Both chuckle again.]

March twenty-fifth, ‘David Bohm and David Shainberg came to the cottage at 8 a.m. to discuss the proposed videotaped discussions that are to be held at Brockwood in May, and things they would do at Brockwood in May. Erna came in after a while. We had breakfast. Then, Mrs. Ellis came afterwards. At 12:30 p.m., Krishnaji gave an interview to Dr. Renèe Weber’—she had been in the conference—‘who teaches philosophy at Rutgers. She had stayed to lunch at Arya Vihara with us, the Bohms, and the Patwardhans, Erna, Theo, Mark, and Michael Krohnen. We discussed the conference and, in certain human concepts, Krishnaji described the Theosophical hierarchy, etcetera. In explaining it, he realized he was describing a version of his own. “Mustn’t mix it,” he said. There was a certain atmosphere as he spoke. At 3 p.m., we drove to Malibu. He said “that” is inexhaustible. The body is tired, but never “that.” “Silence is original, untouched by the human mind.”’

The next day ‘was just a lovely quiet day at home. Deskwork for me. Krishnaji rested.’

March twenty-seventh. ‘Desk. Amanda came over at lunchtime, and David and Philippa came. At 4 p.m., Krishnaji and I went into Santa Monica to see a movie called Three Days of the Condor. We were home in time to see Solzhenitsyn in a BBC interview on TV.’

March twenty-eighth. ‘I went to the Dunne’s in the morning. We sat on the terrace and talked. I was home for lunch with Krishnaji. I had a long talk with my brother in New York on business matters. Sunanda arrived at 5 p.m., to stay until we go back to Ojai. All three of us had supper on trays and watched Kojak.’ Kojak was a big fixture in our lives [S chuckles] in those days. Krishnaji liked to watch Kojak.

S: I remember.

M: Kojak for those who don’t know…

S: No, we all know!

M: We all know? Well, future generations may not know Kojak. [S laughs heartily.] You better explain it.

S: Alright. It was a television program with a bald New York detective by the name of Kojak, and it was very funny and it was a good program.

M: Yes, yes. And I will insert my own comment, which is that Krishnaji would laugh because it was very funny, but he wasn’t quite sure what he was laughing at because he didn’t quite understand the New York accent! [S laughs.] And as a New Yorker, I was called on to translate! But he still caught on that it was funny because he would ask me, but he’d be laughing as he asked.

March twenty-ninth. ‘Home all day. Chuck Rusch came in the afternoon about the cottage plans. Krishnaji, Sunanda, and I watched the Academy Awards on TV.’

The next day, ‘I had a 9 a.m. appointment with an immigration lawyer, George Rosenberg, about Krishnaji’s residence in the U.S. and whether to apply from here or from abroad, and did miscellaneous errands on the way back. In the afternoon, I walked over to visit the Dunnes. Krishnaji, Sunanda, and Sidney Field came over, and we all four walked down to the beach.’ I think that was the immigration lawyer who had been the head of immigration, and he was retired, and working as a consultant on immigration. We were trying to bring Krishnaji in as a religious leader, and he said to me, your organization is not a religious one.

S: Ah yes, because there was no god?

M: Yes. And I said, why? And he said because there’s no deity. So, rather smugly, I said, would you consider Buddhism a religion? “Oh, yes!” I said, there is no deity in Buddhism, and he just glared at me! [S chuckles.] Anyway, he wasn’t much help, but anyway and so forth. We were paying him for this, by the way, and he was against it.

So, we now jump into March thirty-first. ‘I went to an eye exam and came back to Malibu. And then Krishnaji, Sunanda, and I drove to Ojai to stay through Krishnaji’s talks. Sunanda and husband, Pama, had supper with us in the cottage.’

April first. ‘The Patwardhans and the Lilliefelts lunched with us. Shakuntala and Natasha arrived to stay at Arya Vihara. Narayan arrives tomorrow. At 10 a.m. I went to the VenturaCounty courthouse conditional-use permit hearing. We got the permit for the school, but they want the KFA to put in curbs and gutters and paving, on Lomita Avenue.’

Nothing much the next day.

On April third, ‘there was a sudden cold wave. Krishnaji gave his first public talk of that year in the Oak Grove at 11 a.m. We lunched outside, nearby, organized by Alan Hooker. There were lots of Brockwood people there. It’s very cold. We walked nevertheless. And it rained in the night. The Vigevenos were at the talk, and Krishnaji greeted both of them nicely.’

April fourth, ‘It is still very cold. Rain held off during Krishnaji’s second Oak Grove talk. The lunch was held in Nordhoff High School cafeteria. Jackie and Joe Kornfeld came to tea.’

The next day, ‘Reg and Mavis Bennett came to tea at the cottage.’

The sixth of April. ‘Krishnaji held a public discussion in the Oak Grove. Rajagopal was there. Lunch was at Arya Vihara. The trustees met to go over plans for the school buildings before the architects’ meeting tomorrow.’

The next day. ‘There was an architects’ meeting all day with the trustees, and there was also a meeting with Moore and Rusch in the cottage about the cottage. Asit Chandmal appeared and dined with Krishnaji and me in the cottage. Sunanda, Pama, and Mark came in later. Krishnaji stayed up till 11 o’clock.’

April eighth, ‘it rained. There was no public discussion.’

On the ninth, ‘At 11 a.m., Sunanda, Pama, Asit Chandmal, Erna, Theo, and I went to the K & R office to see the archives.’ We were supposed to have the right to go, according to the settlement agreement with Rajagopal, any time we wanted, and Erna always gave at least a week’s notice. ‘Erna, at the Ventura meeting, nine days ago, had told Mrs. Vigeveno we were coming. Mrs. Vigeveno had said it was necessary to ask Mr. Christensen.’ That was Rajagopal’s lawyer.

‘Erna said we are coming under the settlement agreement and that there was no need to ask Mr. Christensen. Erna spoke to Cohen’—that was our lawyer in the case—‘who said that we should go ahead. We arrived, and the office was locked, and there was no one there. We all walked to the Vigeveno’s. Agitated, Mrs. Vigeveno opened the door and said Christensen had tried to reach Erna and couldn’t (Erna was at home and in the office all day, and there was no call), and said we couldn’t see the archives. We introduced the Indians with us briefly, trustees of KFI, etc. Erna suggested her telephoning Christensen then and there since he had “tried” to call her. Very reluctantly, Vigeveno let us in, and it was a long time getting the number and dialing it. Erna spoke to him first, and then I did. It is not convenient for his clients, he said. Reasonable rights and visiting must be settled before we can go. I asked what they’d consider more reasonable than nine days’ notice, and for an 11 a.m. weekday visit? He repeated it is not convenient. I said, convenience defined by him could prevent our ever going, and it was a continuation of obstacles put in our way a year ago. He said we will settle this. And I suggested he be more responsive to Cohen’s letters and telephone calls, so we could end this charade. Erna got back on the phone, and was much gentler.’

We departed, and got back in the Mercedes parked outside K & R. Then, the Indians suggested going over to Rajagopal’s. I said I wouldn’t go, and Erna wouldn’t either, but urged Theo to go with them. They went. Unshaven, dilapidated, in a bathrobe, Rajagopal met them. He greeted Sunanda enthusiastically. They talked on the porch. He said he was helpless. His lawyer’s advice was preventing him. Then, he invited Sunanda to come the next day, and he would show her. Asit said he was leaving today and would like to see his aunt’s, “Pupul’s account” of the Ootacamund events. Rajagopal said he didn’t quite know where anything was. They didn’t stay. Sunanda said she would let him know. She came back, and over lunch at Arya Vihara, recounted it to Krishnaji. Sunanda, Asit, and Pama were shocked by what they had seen. Sunanda at lunch became tearful. Krishnaji said Rajagopal was a scoundrel, and it was insulting to invite her but refuse entry to the rest. It was awful to see a man so deteriorated, Sunanda said. She was sorry for him, as a tragedy. I said it is always a tragedy when someone behaves evilly; Hitler was a tragedy, but my sympathy goes to the victims of such people. Rajagopal has consistently, in the past and continues, to spit on something and someone we all consider sacred. That is what one sees. Sunanda later telephoned Rajagopal and said she wasn’t coming.’

‘Mrs. Mathias arrived and is staying with Mrs. Porter.’

April tenth. ‘Krishnaji gave his third public talk in the Oak Grove. We lunched near the Ranch House Restaurant. In the afternoon, Krishnaji held an education discussion in the cottage which included the Siddoos, Tapas, Sunanda, Pama, Shakuntala, Narayan, etc. Later, Mrs. Mathias came and talked to Krishnaji.’

On April eleventh, ‘Krishnaji gave the fourth Ojai talk. Lunch again near the Ranch House. Sunanda and Pama left after lunch. At 4 p.m., Krishnaji held another education discussion on one who touches intelligence, and giving it to a student, which I taped. Mrs. Porter brought Blanche Mathias at 5 o’clock.’

For April twelfth, it just says, ‘Desk. Dictated letters. It rained and was cold. Lunched at Arya Vihara. Mrs. Mathias came again in the afternoon.’

The next day, ‘It was cold, but rain held off from the Oak Grove while Krishnaji held a public discussion. Mrs. Mathias again came to see Krishnaji.’

On April fourteenth, ‘I left Ojai at 9:30 a.m. and drove to Los Angeles where I met Charles Moore at the PacificDesignCenter. I looked at tiles, appliances, etc., and went over plans at his office in Westwood. Then I got some books from Winky’s, and got to Malibu at 5 p.m. There I had supper with the Dunnes, plus Miranda, Philippa, and David, and Schlesinger’s son. I left at 7:20 p.m., and drove back to Ojai, reaching the cottage by 8:40. Krishnaji had talked to the Siddoos, Tapas, Narayan, etc. Fritz Wilhelm has arrived.’

April fifteenth. ‘Krishnaji gave the fourth public talk in the Grove. It was very cold. Krishnaji tried to have a dialogue with Fritz, Narayan, and David Moody, with the public allowed to join in. The subject was the same as at the scientists’ conference: In a disintegrating society, what is correct action? They also discussed: what is correct action to survive in freedom? Then, there was lunch at Arya Vihara. I talked futilely to Al Blackburn after lunch.’ I don’t know what about. ‘At 3:30 p.m., Krishnaji held a meeting in the cottage on the activity of the Educational Center for adults. Present were the trustees, and Mark, Fritz, and Narayan. The walk was down Thacher Road, and around, with Krishnaji, Fritz, Alan K. and me.’

April sixteenth was Good Friday. ‘Krishnaji talked to Narayan, the Siddoos, and Tapas at 9:30 a.m. Narayan is to join the Siddoo school in Vancouver. Erna and I talked to Stanley Cohen’—that’s our lawyer—‘about Rajagopal and whether to sue him for non-compliance of the settlement agreement. He should try for compliance first through Christensen, and with an implication of a suit. At 11 a.m., I saw Bill Angelos and a young Englishman, Mark Sayre, who might give videotape equipment. We lunched at Arya Vihara. At 3 p.m. there was a trustees meeting, then we were joined by the staff, Mark, David Moody, Katie Marx, and Michael Krohnen.’

On the seventeenth of April. ‘At 11 a.m., Krishnaji gave the fifth Ojai talk. It was a large crowd, 3,000 to 5,000 people. Krishnaji felt it was a messy crowd. We ate in the field in Hooker’s arrangement, and left. At 3 p.m., Krishnaji saw Mr. Camarge.’ I don’t know who that is. ‘I talked to Shakuntala about Narayan going to Vancouver. Natasha’—that’s Narayan’s and Shakuntala’s child—‘would be at Brockwood. At 3:30 p.m., Krishnaji held a discussion about what should go on at the EducationalCenter. David Bohm, Fritz Wilhelm, Narayan, the Siddoos, Tapas, and the trustees were there. Krishnaji, Alan K., and I went for a walk.’

April eighteenth, ‘Krishnaji gave his sixth and final Ojai talk for this year. Over 5,000 people were there. He spoke on religion, meditation, and duty. After the talk, we ate with the audience in the Grove briefly, then came back to the cottage. I packed. Krishnaji held a meeting with David Bohm, Fritz Wilhelm, the Lilliefelts, and Alan K. to discuss the center plans. Fritz is to move to Ojai either in October, or if Krishnaji goes to India, he will go there and come to Ojai in February to direct the AdultEducationCenter. We left Ojai and came home to Malibu in time for supper.’

April nineteenth, ‘Home all day. Worked on Krishnaji’s immigration papers. Bill Angelos came by about the videotape plans of his for the Foundation. Krishnaji and I walked in the garden. I spoke to my family in the east.’

The next day, ‘We went to town, had a picnic in the car near UCLA, and met Alan Kishbaugh at the Bruin Theater to see a movie, All the President’s Men, the Watergate story. Earlier, Bill Angelos came with a letter to Krishnaji about his videotaping, etcetera. I talked to him at some length. Blackburn is in the scheme, possibly Carl Marcus. He then came back as Krishnaji and I were leaving for town, and while walking to the car, again I said that he must see and talk to Erna and the Foundation members.’

April twenty-first. ‘Chuck Rusch came with the revised plan and roofing samples. Charles Moore is ill. Krishnaji spent the morning going over the plans with Rusch. Erna said Angelos telephoned her that Krishnaji had authorized him to go ahead with his plan. Frances McCann then called with the same story. I telephoned Angelos and told him he had no right to say this. Krishnaji had authorized nothing. We both simply told him to speak to Erna. Erna says Marcus is not putting up the money for it.’

The twenty-second of April. ‘I went to the lawyers and fetched the package of papers to present to the U.S. consul about Krishnaji’s residence permit. Did various errands. Went to Lailee’—that’s my doctor.—‘for scar inspection before leaving. I was home by 3 o’clock. Krishnaji and I walked in the garden.’

April twenty-third. ‘I began packing. Shakuntala, Narayan, and Mark Lee to lunch. Narayan is interested in Vancouver with the Siddoos and Tapas. Discussed it with Krishnaji, and it was decided he’d go with the Siddoos and create a school and center in Vancouver. Krishnaji also discussed the RishiValley problems.’

The next day. ‘Packing. The cars were put on blocks [3]. Alan K. came at noon for lunch. Then he drove Krishnaji and me to Century City where we all saw the Hitchcock movie Family Plot.’ Don’t remember that one. ‘Back for tea. Then, Chuck Rusch came with the revised plans for the cottage. Both Krishnaji and I began to feel enthusiastic about them.’

April twenty-fifth. ‘More packing. After lunch, I went over to spend the afternoon with the Dunnes. Betsy came. Krishnaji came too for a short time on the way to the beach for a walk. We had supper as usual, and then I finished packing and putting things away.’

April twenty-sixth. ‘Up at 5 a.m., as it became light on a clear marvelous morning. Calm after some wind in the night. I washed my hair, wrote a letter, fixed breakfast, then put things in the safe. Alan K. came at 7 a.m. I had brought the Dunne’s VW back yesterday afternoon, and I had loaded it with the large bags. Now, Alan took the rest. Krishnaji went with him, and I went with Amanda to the airport after goodbyes to Phil and Philippa. Narayan and Mark came to see Krishnaji off at the airport. Narayan flies back to India tonight after agreeing to join the Siddoos in starting a school in Vancouver. Krishnaji and I flew on the 9:15 a.m. TWA to New York. My brother sent a car to meet us, and we reached the RitzTower by about 6 p.m.’

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[1] The apartment mentioned is above the office next to Pine Cottage. Back to text.

[2] The Krishnamurti and Rajagopal Foundation was one of many organizations Rajagopal founded to hold and transfer property and copyright. Back to text.

[3]The best way to look after cars for long storage at that time was to lift them off of their suspension by putting them on blocks. Back to text.