Issue #76

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Issue 76—June 11, 1983 to August 5, 1983


Krishnaji’s health is increasingly frail, but there is no let-up in the demands placed on him:he continues with his usual speaking schedule and interviews, he must make an extra round trip from Europe to California for the court case, he must respond to people playing politics at Brockwood, and he must resolve a conflict in India. All this brings Krishnaji to feel that this is an extra-dangerous period; when something antagonistic to “good” is trying to penetrate his world, and people close to him must take extra precautions.

The Memoirs of Mary Zimbalist: Issue #76

M: Today we begin our recounting on June tenth, 1983. ‘The Bohms came to lunch. Svetlana Peters sat next to Krishnaji and Dave was opposite.’ A few people are aware of who she is, though not many, but they give no sign of it, which is as it should be, as one of the burdens of her life is the Stalin’s daughter image. Krishnaji and Dave talked a bit about international relations at lunch, and she kept silent on that subject. At 4 p.m., Krishnaji and Dave did a dialogue recorded on the three new color video cameras Scott has just acquired. This dialogue is to be sent as a substitute for Krishnaji at an August Conference of Transpersonal Psychology to be held in Davos, Switzerland. The Dalai Lama is one of the participants, and there’s a long, varied list of others. Dr. Lichti is on the committee, and so Krishnaji agreed to tape a dialogue with Bohm instead of appearing there. I put Svetlana Peters in the assembly hall, where she watched the recording, but Saral and I watch with the school on the monitor in the dining room. I have a rather heavy cough, as has much of the school, so it was better for me not to be in the room where the recording is made. The video looks superb. The color makes a huge difference and Krishnaji was glowingly beautiful.’ [Both chuckle.] ‘After lunch, Krishnaji  and I took Svetlana on a short walk around the lanes. She asked me to use her first name, which seems to be variously Svetlana or Lana. She leans toward the latter, as sounding less Russian. It sounds, of course, Lana Turner-ish to me’ [both chuckle] ‘and Svetlana is a nice name, but it’s for her to decide.’ [Both chuckle.]

June twelfth. ‘Krishnaji spoke to everyone in the morning. In the afternoon, I commenced a chill, and I lay on my bedroom floor by the radiator. Fever ensued and rose to 104 degrees. Dr. Parchure gave me Septrim, an antibacterial drug. I have a heavy cough and congestion in the lungs.’

The next day. ‘I feel rotten. The fever persists, though it is less. Dr. Parchure says I have viral pneumonitis. Svetlana Peters came to say goodbye as she returns to Cambridge by bus. The side effect of Septrim is nausea.’ I remember Svetlana came in and I was huddled on the floor by the radiator from my chill, and I felt she got some image of me as a very unhealthy person. Or so she somehow evinced later—I forget how.

S: [chuckles] As you were ill, I was the one who was asked to drive her to Petersfield, I remember. And contrary to not wanting to talk about her father—she just talked a blue streak about Stalin.

M: [laughs] That’s interesting. But did she bring it up?

S: I can’t remember, but she just talked a blue streak, and she told me the very funny story about her father’s death.

M: What was that, please? We’ll record it for history.

S: Oh—I’m sure it must be written someplace. Anyway, as she told it, it seemed humorous and also like justice unfolding. So, he had what might have been a heart attack or something; anyway, it left him helpless on the floor. The servants found him, but they didn’t dare touch him, because getting something wrong with Stalin would have been death, or worse. So they called the head of the house. The head of the house came, but would not touch him. The head of the house called the KGB. KGB agents assigned to Stalin’s protection came, but the agents would not do anything. They called the head of the KGB. Meanwhile, Stalin is in urgent need of medical attention. The head of the KGB came and he called Stalin’s doctor. The doctor came, but the doctor would do nothing decisive, but insisted instead on calling the head of the hospital or the medical university, or whatever; so all this time, all these people were called and came but nobody dared do anything, so, meanwhile, he died.

M: [both chuckle] They probably did the right thing.

S: I think they did do the right thing; but it was just, you know, listening to her tell the story of all these people who were called, who rushed over and who wouldn’t do anything, but deciding that there was someone above them that they had to call. [Laughs.] And as I remember the story, it was comic, and it was tragic, and it seemed just. Here was this man lying for hours, dying, needing medical attention, and nobody dared give it to him [laughs] for fear of getting into trouble; the fear he generated.

M: Yes, that’s very interesting.

S: And she told all kinds of other stories that made me think, “My god, what a strange reality to grow up in.”

M: Between Brockwood, eight miles to Petersfield? She must’ve talked a blue streak.

S: She did talk a blue streak, but then I didn’t just drop her off. We sat in the car and waited for the bus to show up, which was probably late, given it was an English bus. And so we talked for quite a while.

M: Oh well, that’s fascinating. [Both laugh.] You never told me all this. Well, it’s now part of the record.

I don’t record anything for the next day except that I’m still ill, and I was still ill on June fifteenth, so ‘Scott accompanied Krishnaji to London. Mary and Joe met Krishnaji, took him to his dentist, Mr. Thompson, after which Krishnaji lunched at their flat. Then Joe took Krishnaji to Truefitt for a haircut, where Scott rejoined him, and they came home. Scott went to the Swiss consulate for Krishnaji’s visa. I stayed in bed all day.’

The sixteenth. ‘My fever has subsided. I feel weak but better. Krishnaji spoke to the whole school. I got up in the afternoon for the return of Dorothy from the hospital. She looked tired and ravaged, but was able to climb very slowly, with Krishnaji’s help, up the fire escape stairwell to her room. The room next to the one she shared with Montague has been arranged for her as a bedroom. Montague was against it. He doesn’t seem to realize that he has saturated their bedroom with his pipe smoking. The lack of sensitivity is amazing. He was puffing on the pipe while Dorothy was having a heart attack, and son Guy is even worse. While she was having the attack and waiting for the doctor to come, he went for a walk. Today, knowing his mother was arriving from the hospital, he also went for a walk, and wasn’t there to help.’

S: Yes, that was typical of him. Really extraordinary.

M: Well, that’s what happened.

The next day, I don’t record anything of significance, and on June eighteenth, it only says, ‘I coughed most of the night, paroxysms of coughing, and felt as if my ribs would break. Krishnaji dictated letters in the morning. I saw Dorothy briefly. She looks much better. I took a nap, and had supper upstairs.’

For the nineteenth, it only says: ‘Krishnaji spoke to the school. Mr. Santhanam came by car from London, attended the meeting, and lunched with us.’

The twentieth of June. ‘I discovered Frances has slipped back into her delusions. She was lying rigidly in bed unable, she said, to get up. She had locked herself in. It took me twenty minutes to persuade her to get up and let me in. She hasn’t taken her medicine since before leaving Ojai. Hidley consented to her coming, but she lacks the insight to take her medication when her symptoms begin. I found the pills and Hidley’s instructions and gave her some. Dave and Saral came to lunch and in afternoon, Krishnaji and Dave did a continuation of the video dialogue on The Future of Man for the Davos Conference.’

S: Which, I’ve been told, to be more politically correct, is now called The Future of Humanity.

M: Oh. You mean, the tape series. [Chuckles.]

S: Yes, both those tapes.

M: June twenty-first. ‘Frances is again in bed. More delusionary talk. Dr. Parchure and I persuaded her to take her pills and a little liquid. What should we do? She is supposed to go visit her sister on Friday and then go to Gstaad. Krishnaji spoke to the students and I went to the staff meeting. In afternoon, Krishnaji talked to the four—Ingrid, Scott, Harsh, and Stephen—and gave them full authority from the Foundation to act. I had previously spoken with the other trustees to get their agreement to it.’

The twenty-second. ‘Frances got up. The pills are working. I spoke to Hidley, who says she must have supervision. Krishnaji, in the afternoon, asked her what she would prefer, to return to Ojai and Hidley’s care, or find a psychiatrist in Switzerland. She chose Ojai. Dr. Clark saw Dorothy and is satisfied with her condition.’

June twenty-third. ‘Frances’s sister, Helen, rang from Switzerland in indignant alarm at Frances not going there. She demanded to talk to Krishnaji. I explained the situation as well as I could.’ Her sister blamed Krishnamurti for everything.

S: Yes.

M: ‘Krishnaji talked to the school in the morning and to the staff at 4 p.m. I went on errands to Alresford. Pupul arrived at 5:30 p.m. to stay for two days. Krishnaji had me recount briefly the outline of the legal troubles with Rajagopal. I didn’t go into details. She listened with a very long upper lip and said little. She is staying two nights in what was my office and now is a single guest room.’ She, of course, thought Rajagopal Indian, and he was business-like, and so…

S: Yes, so Rajagopal had to be fine because he was Indian.

M: That’s right.

June twenty-fourth. ‘There was another angry call from Frances’s sister demanding that Krishnaji call “A conference of the leading psychiatrists in London for next Monday.” I said it was not possible. Krishnaji cannot do that. He knows no psychiatrist in this country, and cannot take that responsibility. If she wishes to do that, it is up to her. She spluttered something about Krishnaji had taken responsibility when Frances gave a lot of money. I said it is unfortunate she should think in such terms, that Krishnaji had brought Hidley into the picture as someone he had confidence in and could recommend when Frances is in Ojai and needed help, but could not be expected to take full care of Frances. I said, in any case, she’s now up and better and has changed her plans and is to go to Ojai. I had already changed Frances’s ticket to the thirtieth, so she will be on the same flight as Katie Hidley.’ That was John Hidley’s daughter, who is a student at Brockwood. ‘Hidley rang me later and said the McCann cousin in New York had rung him, and sounded reasonable, though under pressure from the sister.’ That was the cousin who looked after Frances’s finances. ‘I rang Erna about Frances’s arrival. Krishnaji and Pupul, in the afternoon, did a videotaped dialogue. Krishnaji and I walked around the block after supper. I’m still coughing.’

The twenty-fifth of June. ‘Krishnaji and Pupul did a second videotaped dialogue in the morning. She left after lunch and returns to Delhi tomorrow. There was a staff meeting at 4:45 p.m., and Krishnaji came to it unannounced. Brian Nicholson read a statement on why he had decided to leave. It was unclear, and Krishnaji went into it. Also, a similar decision was made by Matthew. It was an intense meeting.’ Who was Matthew?

S: Mathew was an American who taught, I think, math, and he was one of Nicholson’s cohorts in the grab for power that didn’t work. [M chuckles.] He had been a student at Brockwood. Matthew—what was his name? Anyway, this was all part of the mess that had gotten out of hand at Brockwood. They were all vying for power and influence—they saw themselves as the inheritors of the mantle of Brockwood—and when things didn’t go to them (they clearly weren’t in this committee running Brockwood in Dorothy’s convalescence), they were very unhappy. So, those two decided to leave, thankfully.

M: Well, that was good.

S: There must have been some preview that this “statement” was going to happen, because Krishnaji didn’t normally come to staff meetings. In fact, I can’t remember him ever coming to staff meetings.

M: No, he didn’t. No—I can’t even remember this staff meeting. [Both chuckle.]

The twenty-sixth of June. ‘At 11:30 a.m., instead of speaking to the whole school and visitors, as he would normally do on a Sunday, Krishnaji spoke only to the staff. Most intensely, most irresistibly, and probingly. It seemed to have a shaking effect.’

S: Good. This was Krishnaji undoing any “shaking up” those two thought they would do with their leaving and statements.

M: Good. [Chuckles.]

June twenty-seventh. ‘Krishnaji and I took the 9:45 a.m. train to London. Joe met us and dropped me, and I took slacks to Hilliard’s to be copied. I then got a present for Vanda, had a haircut, etc. and joined Krishnaji at Mary and Joe’s, where we lunched very pleasantly indeed. Joe took us back to Waterloo. Meanwhile, Frances’s sister had come from Switzerland. Frances met her in Petersfield, took her to lunch at the little Donkey Cart restaurant, and put her back on the train.’

S: Extraordinary. She came all that way and didn’t even see Brockwood.

M: Well, she didn’t want to. I mean, you know—enemy territory. [Both chuckle.]

The twenty-eighth. ‘Krishnaji spoke to students. I went to Dr. Reilly about my continuing heavy cough. He gave me a prescription and sent me for a chest X-ray to the Winchester Hospital. On my return, I talked before lunch with Marie-Bertrande and Jean-Michel Maroger, who are here to take Diane home tomorrow at the end of term. In the afternoon, I spoke for an hour with the Hans Vincents from the Holland Stichting about starting a school there.’ They were thinking that they should have a school. ‘At 4 p.m., Krishnaji held another staff meeting and is lighting fires under them.’ [Both chuckle.]

June twenty-ninth. ‘It is the end of the term. I spent most of the day at the typewriter, but saw Dorothy briefly. She wasn’t feeling well. Doctor Reilly says there is an “old fibrosis” in the lung left-middle zone.’ That must have been a description of what was ailing her. ‘Jean-Michel was at lunch and then he took Diane back to France.’

The thirtieth. ‘Frances left for Ojai with Katie Hidley. It was packing and putting things in order all day for me. I had a good visit with Dorothy, who seemed well. Krishnaji and I spoke to Erna in Ojai. Krishnaji wants “to end it.” How can we? Erna says we have to defend the suit.’

The first of July. ‘I was packed and ready to go by 7:30 a.m. Krishnaji and I left Brockwood at 8:30 a.m. in a school car driven by Kathy Forbes. At Heathrow, Rita Zampese was there to smooth Krishnaji’s departure, and her pull as the head Lufthansa public relations persuaded Swiss Air not to charge us for our excess baggage weight.’ [Both chuckle.] ‘We took the 10:30 a.m. Swiss Air to Geneva, and reached Geneva a bit after 1 p.m., where we took a taxi to the Hotel des Bergues. Lunched. In the afternoon, we walked across to do our usual errands: ties chez Jacquet for Joe Links and Krishnaji—the choice was less good this year. Then to Patek pour régler les montres’—the annual adjustment to his pocket watches. ‘Then to the Pharmacie Principale and Grand Passage, where we got long toweling bathrobes for Krishnaji and chose an alarm clock for Dr. Parchure. That seemed enough walking for us both, so we returned to rest before dinner. We dined very pleasantly at the Amphitryon. Krishnaji ate very well and seemed to enjoy it.’

The next day, ‘We spent the morning in beds, the luxury of time and breakfast in bed.’ It is lovely to have breakfast in bed.

S: I know. [Chuckles.]

M: ‘I coughed my current earthquakes in the night, but the quiet morning was a rest. These pauses in Geneva each year are small luxuries to me. Krishnaji has come safely from wherever we were, and we are again in the tidy order of Switzerland. Today, we lunched in the Pavillon, as the Amphitryon was closed. And at 2:30 p.m., Hertz delivered a nice little white Ford Fiesta. The enjoyment of the familiar was there again. We drove doucement au bord du lac until Morges and then the autoroute to the turn-off to Oron, then via Bulle, etcetera, and came to Tannegg by 5:40 p.m. Vanda and Fosca arrived yesterday. Fosca took some persuading to come, says Vanda. She doesn’t like to leave her ailing sister, and Fosca will be ninety next December, though she looks no different. We unpacked before supper. Krishnaji came to the table. Though he is beginning to cough, he says he still feels full of energy.’

July third. ‘Krishnaji stayed in bed. He had a 99.2 fever in the afternoon. I rang Dr. Parchure at Brockwood for advice. He said that Dorothy had come downstairs at Brockwood for lunch and a walk outside with Whisper. I slept all afternoon. Krishnaji said at lunch that he would live to be 100, “To see what it is like.” He later told me, “Rajagopal is getting it. I have sent two angels to tell him.”’ [Both chuckle.]

S: Those angels didn’t do a good job.

M: No, they were not persuasive. They, being angels, aren’t the best thing to be to deal with Rajagopal. [S laughs.] He should’ve sent something from downstairs with a pitchfork.

S: [Both laugh.] Yes, exactly.

M: Oh, dear.

The fourth of July. ‘I went down into Gstaad on errands. Krishnaji stayed in bed. I slept in the afternoon. Yen Yang, Raman, Scott, and Harsh all came by with things from Dr. Parchure.’ Thank you. That was quick.

S: No, I think we would have left before your call to Parchure.

M: Yes. I see.

The fifth. ‘Krishnaji remained in bed. His temperature was 99.4 in the afternoon. Vanda and I did shopping errands in the morning. Dr. Parchure arrived just before supper, having flown to Geneva and found his way by train to Gstaad. I am very cheered to have him at the medical helm. Krishnaji is glad of his presence, too.’

The next day, ‘Krishnaji remained in bed. His temperature was ninety-eight in the afternoon. Dr. Parchure and I went shopping for all kinds of remedies, a steamer, etcetera. I worked at the desk, but also took a nap. Vanda signed the lease for Tannegg for next year.’

July seventh. ‘Krishnaji remained in bed all day, but has no fever today. I did desk work and ran errands. I dined with Henry and Margot Bamberger’—that’s my accountant from Los Angeles—‘and the Lazar Bernhardts, who are traveling with them.’ That’s a Los Angeles lawyer who handled things for me and Sam.

There’s really nothing the next day, but on the ninth of July, ‘I got a letter from Mary L. suggesting novelist, philosopher, and don at Oxford Iris Murdoch as someone for a videotaped dialogue with Krishnaji. He agreed, so I wrote to Mary to pursue it. As Vanda and I were leaving Tannegg to do our errands, a taxi disgorged a woman with four bags. It was this year’s crazy lady. A Ruth Jacov of Zürich, who thinks she is married to Krishnaji, and writes amorous letters about their life on the astral plane.’ [Both chuckle.] ‘She had arrived to join him at Tannegg. I took the firm line of reality, having learned from all past summers that endless understanding conversations only let the fantasies bloom. We offered to drive her to a hotel, but she refused that, so we took her back to the train station from which she had just come, and somehow got our errands done before everything closed for the noon hour.’ [Both chuckle.] This is a representative Gstaad summer day event. [Both laugh.] ‘After lunch, we telephoned Dorothy at Brockwood. Her voice sounded well. Dr. Reilly prescribed a two-mile walk each day. She says she feels feeble. We also telephoned Erna. Rajagopal refused to come to Oxnard for a deposition, insisting it be done in Ojai. Stuart Comis’—that’s our lawyer—‘goes to court on Monday about this.’ He wanted it done in his house. In other words, he didn’t want to do it, but anyway.

The tenth of July. ‘Krishnaji, who got up yesterday with his voice was heavy and was still coughing—his voice was clear this morning, in spite of a bad night and not enough sleep.’ He had this—usually, something was wrong with him, he would have some illness before the talks. And on the morning of the talk, it would be gone. It was remarkable, and it happened over and over. Anyway, ‘Dr. Parchure had me give him, just before leaving for the tent, a spoon of warmed onion juice and honey.’ [Chuckles.] ‘He gave the talk almost without coughing. The summoning of energy that his body is able to do when needed, that is, for his work, is extraordinary. And it happened again this morning. He spoke one hour and five minutes to an overflowing tent. He slept when he got back to the chalet, and lunched in bed. After some coughing, he slept all afternoon. So did I. Though he is tired, he is reading a Graham Greene. He has nothing else. All the shelves of thrillers are out of favor, and there are no nature books at Cadoneau’s store.’ Do you remember Madame Cadoneau?

S: I do, indeed.

M: [chuckles] ‘He doesn’t want novels, least of all, what I have, which is Proust.’ [Both laugh.] ‘I will go back to hunt again tomorrow.’

July eleventh. ‘Krishnaji is still coughing. He dictated four letters to India. There is trouble there, as usual, with Bangalore Valley School. The principal, Dr. Shankar, and Krishnakutti have started advertising for religious people and are starting religious centers here and there without consulting KFI. The Patwardhans are very upset. Dictating letters and expending his energy did no good for his cough. Dr. Parchure feared he was heading for fever and, with the talk tomorrow, it was worrisome. Dr. Lichti was due to arrive in Saanen tonight for the talks. I rang her at lunchtime in Zürich and explained the situation. She telephoned the Gstaad pharmacy with a prescription, which I fetched: an antibiotic, Fibromyacin. Dr. Parchure delayed giving it until Dagmar Lichti arrived. But, meanwhile, he did Krishnaji’s fasting blood sugar test, and another one, one-and-a-half hours after lunch, and it went to the top of the color chart. Parchure estimated it at 280. Dagmar arrived at 7 p.m. She brought various medical things with her. She examined Krishnaji, and decided he did not need Fibromyacin as the fever has not developed. Krishnaji’s blood sugar is the problem. Dagmar telephoned one of Gstaad’s pharmacies for Rastinon, an anti-diabetic pill Krishnaji took in India, which agreed with him. The pharmacist opened his place at 7:30 p.m., and I fetched the tablets. Dagmar also gave Krishnaji a Vitamin B shot very skillfully in the vein in his left forearm. She stayed to supper with Vanda, Dr. Parchure, and me. She also prescribed for my cough.’ She was a wonderful woman.

S: Yes, she was.

M: July twelfth. ‘Krishnaji didn’t sleep well. There were too many things done with his body last evening. But he coughed less. He looked tired when he got on the platform, but that extraordinary flow of strength came; his face changing, and a remarkable talk [1] ensued for just over an hour. He spoke of zero containing all the numbers, and then said the present contains all of time. Peace cannot come about through thought. If you see division in relationship, what do you do? To not try to answer with thought is the beginning of intelligence. When we got back to the chalet, Al Blackburn rang. He called earlier about something very important that he must see Krishnaji about right away. So Krishnaji said, “Get it over, have him come now.” He took time to get there when Krishnaji could have been sleeping. Then it turned out, the thing of importance was a book Blackburn wrote that is being published. For this, he took over half an hour of Krishnaji’s energy. Wretched idiot,’ I write. [Both chuckle.] I was irritable because, you know, he said he had to see Krishnaji about something important, and it was only about a book he’d written. ‘During that time, Parchure gave me a Vitamin B shot. Dagmar came to lunch. Krishnaji ate in bed. Dr. Parchure and Dagmar made lists of foods Krishnaji can and cannot eat. Dr. Parchure took his blood sugar fasting this morning and it was 180. He has a strict diet now. Scott came by at 5:30 p.m. The videos are now on sale in English at the very end of the talk, minutes after Krishnaji stopped speaking, and they are on sale at the next meeting in five languages—French, German, Italian, Spanish and Dutch.’ That was really extraordinary, wonderful.

S: It was extraordinary. Audience members could get up from their seats and buy a videotape of the talk they had just heard. And the next talk day, they could get the talk dubbed in all these languages.

M: It reminds me of a woman later that year, I think it was that year, during the talks at Brockwood: She bought a videotape of a previous talk before the talk of that day began, and said ‘But, can I buy the one for today?’—Krishnaji hadn’t given the talk yet. [Both laugh.]

S: No, we weren’t that good! [Both laugh.]

M: I luckily was at the videotape sales table when this happened. [Chuckles.] Anyway…

The thirteenth of July. ‘Dr. Lichti gave Krishnaji an intravenous shot in the early morning. Dr. Parchure and I discussed Krishnaji’s expenditure of energy, and Dr. Parchure talked to Krishnaji, telling him how unhappy he is at having to give Krishnaji shots and remedies to pick him up when the overall care of his health is neglected, that is,  giving the body a chance to rebuild its own energies. He suggested, and Krishnaji agreed, that he henceforth deal only with questions of the teachings; not personal relations, the workings of schools, the organizations, etcetera. So, based on this, he only greeted those who came to attend the trustee meeting of the English Foundation here at 11 a.m.: Cadogan, Maroger, Van der Straten, Hammond, Porter, Forbes, Harsh, and Stephen Smith. Krishnaji remained in bed all day. In the afternoon, Marie-Bertrande, Daphne, and Diane came to tea. About 8:30 p.m., the telephone rang. It was Stanley Cohen, Erna, and Theo, who had met for four hours at his office and were calling from there. Rajagopal’s lawyers demand Krishnaji give a deposition before October first. I said it was impossible to expect a man of eighty-eight, in fragile health, with a heavy schedule, to fly halfway around the world in a week’s time, etcetera. Cohen said the consequences could be Krishnaji being found in default in the suit, his testimony no longer usable, and a possible loss to the Foundation and the rest of us. We talked at length. Finally, I said I would report it all to Krishnaji and telephone tomorrow. I did this, and Krishnaji said we must go. As he speaks tomorrow, he went to bed and slept well. I didn’t.’

The fourteenth of July: ‘I talked to Krishnaji early about the legal situation. He suggested canceling the international trustee meetings to have been held at Brockwood from September seven to fourteen, and that he and I fly to California on the seventh. I agreed, providing we take Parchure along to care for his health. He agreed. I telephoned Mary Cadogan and Jane Hammond here about this plan, and then rang Pupul in Delhi, who immediately said Krishnaji mustn’t go; then, that we must get another lawyer; then that Krishnaji must go on a diplomatic passport. I dealt with all that and asked her to let Sunanda know that the international trustee meetings were off. Krishnaji and I talked it over and decided we’d go on the seventh as above, and remain in Ojai until just before he has to go to India, then all three of us would return to Brockwood. Krishnaji would go to Delhi, accompanied by Parchure, and I would remain at Brockwood to complete my chores about the fire damage insurance, choosing fabrics, etcetera, then I would return to the U.S. Krishnaji gave his third Saanen talk with vigor. [2] Dagmar Lichti came to lunch. I rang Erna and told her what we were doing. She sounded very relieved. Krishnaji and I went for the first walk we have taken this year, up the hill and through the woods. [3] Scott joined us.’

July fifteenth. ‘I seem to have a cold, though I’m still coughing convulsively from the infection at Brockwood. I stayed in and did letters all day. Krishnaji remained in bed. Vanda went to Lausanne. Dagmar Lichti brought special butter, breads, and things from Zürich for Krishnaji.’ [Chuckles.] ‘Krishnaji got up and went for a walk with Dr. Parchure after supper, really too late. It was after 9 p.m. when they returned.’ Goodness.

The sixteenth. ‘Mary Links rang from London. She saw Dorothy at Brockwood yesterday, and said she looked fairly well. She also had a telephone call from Rajagopal about two letters he had sent her. He asked if she had received them, and why hadn’t she acknowledged them? Because there was no note from him, she replied. He asked, had she shown them to anyone? She replied, “To Joe.” Who? he asked. “My husband,” she said. “Oh, that’s alright,” he said. Then he asked, “To anyone else? To Mary Zimbalist?” Then Mary changed the subject and the conversation ended.’ [Both chuckle.] ‘I told her we were going to Ojai in September. Dagmar Lichti gave Krishnaji a second intravenous shot in the delicate vein in his arm.’ He was very hard to give intravenous shots to, as his veins were small. ‘I fetched Mr. and Mrs. Rex Henry at the Saanerhof and brought them to lunch at Tannegg. He wrote that they had come to hear Krishnaji one last time as they are eighty-six and getting infirm. They live now in southern Spain. I drove them back. I took a nap. Scott came by and walked with Krishnaji. David Shainberg rang. He has just arrived in Gstaad. He has a friend with him. I invited them to lunch tomorrow.’

The seventeenth of July. ‘It is another clear, warm day, and it was very hot in the tent, which was crammed with people. Krishnaji gave his fourth Saanen talk on what is intelligence. After resting, he came to the lunch table. We were eight: Vanda, Dagmar, Rita Zampese, Shainberg and his friend Catherine Segonzac, Parchure, and me. The friend is a French psychologist who lives in New York and does waking dream therapy—?’ I have a dash and a question mark. [S chuckles.] ‘I took a nap after they all left. Mary C. and Jane Hammond came by at 6 p.m., and I went with them up the Hornberg for dinner. The air was cooler, and had a lovely mountain feeling: cowbells, buttercups, and the silent snow-topped peaks. We had fondue and talked, and my raspy throat was soothed with the cold descent of ice cream. This summer has been one perfect sunny day after another, but almost too hot. Mary Links said it was ninety-four degrees in London. To be hot is increasingly unpleasant for me. It seems to unbalance the body.’

July eighteenth. ‘Vanda left at 9:30 a.m. for Florence. She will return August ninth, so I can go to Rome to see Filomena on the tenth. The telephone rang, and it was Asit at the Palace Hotel, having arrived from Greece last midnight. He came to see Krishnaji midmorning and the three of us talked till lunchtime. Computer talk at first—the enormous developments. His company specializes in a computer larger than any made by IBM. The Japanese have set national goals to cure cancer, to duplicate the human brain.’

‘Krishnaji: “Where will all this lead?”’

‘Asit: “Perhaps to a wider gap between the technical elite and the masses who will have almost no opportunities in the world as it will be.”’

‘I asked what is happening along these lines in Russia, and Asit said they are concentrating on biochemistry, research into parapsychology, especially mind reading and control. Asit asked Krishnaji if this is possible. Krishnaji said, “Of course, mind reading is obviously possible.” Asit asked if Krishnaji could do it, and Krishnaji replied that he could, but that he refuses to. Then as Asit is an Indian trustee, he was told of the Rajagopal suit. Krishnaji went on to say a person can block someone else reading one’s mind, reaching it. Rajagopal’s aggression is directed at him, but Krishnaji forms a wall it cannot penetrate. On Krishnaji’s side, there is emptiness, which forms the wall, and within this, Krishnaji can function.’ This emptiness business is something fascinating and deeply part of Krishnaji.

S: Yes, it is extraordinary.

M: ‘Krishnaji went on to say that because Rajagopal’s sendings cannot penetrate, “It is like coming up against a rock,” and it returns to Rajagopal. “I do not want to hurt him. I am not doing anything to him,” but something may change, that stillness may reach him, or perhaps he is too full of hatred, it may not. “It will be interesting to see. That is one reason I want to go to California.” Krishnaji spoke in that way that may be serious or not, of those being high in Masonry, and to whom two angels are given.’ [Chuckles.] I didn’t know angels had anything to do with Masonry, did you?

S: The Masonic order? I have no idea what they had to do with…[chuckles].

M: Why don’t we know these things? Why weren’t we told? [Said jokingly.]

S: Yes, and why don’t we have our own angels?

M: Well, if we were clever and sensitive, we would have known. They watch—oh, wait a minute…‘Krishnaji spoke in that way that may be serious or may not of those very high in Masonry to whom two angels are given. They watch over the welfare of a person or persons, though he may not ask for himself and may rarely ask an action from them. Krishnaji has never asked his until now. But he has “sent two angels to talk to Rajagopal” to make him turn from this ugliness.’ [Chuckles.] ‘Asit translated this into a force of goodness and Krishnaji smiled. He spoke of sensing an atmosphere when serious things are being discussed, which is different from the atmosphere when discussing computers.’ There was that. ‘Though interest generates its own atmosphere. Asit asked if Krishnaji could convey to a friendly person instead of Rajagopal in ways that would change them. Krishnaji said that is what is happening in the tent, but the other person must be willing to listen. I understand this to be listening with emptiness, without the filter and chatter of thought. Krishnaji’s turning away Rajagopal’s aggressive projections seem to be empty and that emptiness creates the wall of privacy, which is impenetrable. His mind cannot be read if this happens. Krishnaji said he thinks the ancient Hindus knew about this. This is part of meditation.’

‘Dr. Parchure joined us at lunch. Asit left at 3 p.m. to go to Geneva, then on to Paris, New York, etcetera. Dr. Parchure took Krishnaji’s blood sugar this morning before eating, and it was 120, and postprandial this afternoon was 200. I walked with Krishnaji and Dr. Parchure. Krishnaji was tired, but he wants to be well, and it is said that exercise reduces blood sugar, and so off we went. He approved my setting a good pace and when we came to the river, he wanted to go on. His soldier walk.’ You know that walk. ‘He is so very much the good child at such moments that it wrenches my heart. His spirit is so eager. We came back to find Asit still here, postponing his future trips because he has never heard Krishnaji speak in Saanen. Krishnaji wants to give Fosca a rest tomorrow, so we will lunch with Asit at the Palace Hotel.’

The nineteenth of July. ‘Krishnaji gave talk number five. Krishnaji, Dagmar, Rita Zampese, and I lunched with Asit and Minakshi, Asit’s wife, at the Palace Hotel. Asit had ordered the meal, which was very splendid. Alone in the large dining room, served by two waiters and a mâitre d’hôtel: huge cheese soufflés and other goodies. We took naps later. Krishnaji and I walked to the river, joined by Scott. Dorothy telephoned. Her checkup and cardiogram went well and she sounded cheerful.’

The twentieth. ‘Krishnaji slept well. In the morning, Asit came and there was a taped discussion with Krishnaji. Scott, Dr. Parchure, and I participating slightly. Asit left Gstaad. Scott lunched with us. Mr. Sendra saw Krishnaji at 5 p.m., David Shainberg came by and walked with Krishnaji. I picked up Mary Cadogan and we went to supper with Harsh and the audio crew at their chalet. Shainberg had said previously to Dagmar and Rita that Krishnaji should stop talking as there is nothing new; he was repeating himself. They were indignant and told me.’ Shainberg was a really…I won’t use the word… Eventually, when I heard of some slanderous lies about Krishnaji that he was circulating, I told him what I thought of him.

S: Yes. Just for the record, many of these things you mention, like when you just mentioned this, and when you mentioned Pupul a little while ago, I wish we could record your facial expressions, because you don’t say anything. So people in the future will hear this, and all they will know is that you say, “Shainberg was a really…I won’t use the word…” and they might think, “So, what was the word, ‘prince’? Was it ‘genius’? Was it ‘friend’?” It’s only from seeing your facial expression. [Laughs.]

M: They’ll have to make their own conclusions.

S: Alright, alright, but you are too nice of a person.

M: ‘I told Krishnaji that Shainberg said he should stop talking and Krishnaji brought it up with him on the walk. Shainberg replied that he had said that just to see what they would say.’ Oh, weasel! [S laughs.] ‘A not-quite-believable excuse, as he had said this before, and earned the Lilliefelts’ distrust.’ I’m glad Krishnaji brought it out, I’d forgotten that. [Chuckles.]

The twenty-first of July. ‘Krishnaji gave his sixth Saanen talk in the very hot tent. At 3 p.m., Mary C., Gisèle Balleys, and I held a Saanen Gathering committee meeting. At 4 p.m., Dagmar Lichti came and had a conference with Krishnaji and Dr. Parchure on his program of activity, diet, exercise, medicines, etcetera. She will send Krishnaji a summary. Then she said goodbye and left for Zürich.’ What a nice person. ‘Krishnaji and I telephoned Erna not to cancel the New York and San Francisco talks for next year. She had written asking about them as announcements have to go in the next Bulletin.’

July twenty-second. ‘We are starting a new program: We walk early and briskly at 6:45 a.m., Krishnaji, Dr. Parchure, and I stride to the river and back. Then we do our exercises, have breakfast, etcetera. The early morning is clean, new, full of forest smells and mown hay. At 11 a.m., there was the annual International Committees meeting of all the foreign Krishnamurti committees, with Krishnaji attending. He spoke rather indiscreetly about the points of contention between KF India and the English Foundation and the American Foundation, saying no difficulties ever arose between England and the U.S., but India is difficult.’ [S laughs.] ‘It all went on the tape, and it was felt later that the tape should be edited to avoid Indian hurt feelings or indignation.’ [S chuckles.] I don’t know whether that happened.

S: I don’t know, either.

M: Krishnaji also started a discussion on brain cells at 12:50 p.m., when he knew everyone was going to lunch at the Saanerhof, which we did, not Krishnaji, rather late, and there was further talk about various things. I left at 4 p.m. and took Krishnaji to buy track shoes. It was too hot for the scheduled second late afternoon walk.’

July twenty-third. ‘Early walk to the river, then I did errands. I sorted the handed-in questions for the question-and-answer meeting tomorrow, then fetched to lunch Magdalina Jasciuska, our Polish friend, who is here with her professor husband, George. She was able to come from Poland to escort him home after his double bypass operation in Germany.’ So they couldn’t otherwise have left Poland at that point in 1983. ‘Their eldest son Henry was imprisoned in Poland for circulating Solidarity leaflets. They expect him to be released under the amnesty announced yesterday. We had not met her husband before. A nice, very fluent man. At 5 p.m., Krishnaji saw a blind Sri Lankan man who came here for the talks. Shainberg came by to say goodbye. Krishnaji, he, Scott, and I discussed some of the questions for tomorrow. Then the three of them went for a walk.’

The twenty-fourth of July. ‘There was another early walk with Krishnaji and Dr. Parchure. Krishnaji held the first question-and-answer meeting at 10:30 a.m. in the tent. He spent one hour on the first question, and answered only two. At 4:30 p.m., I took things to Jane Hammond for her to bring them back to England as she leaves by car and had room to carry things. Then I fetched Magdalina to Tannegg for Krishnaji’s touch, as she has trouble with her foot. Harsh came up to talk to me about Brockwood. He was nervous about how Dorothy will take the position of the four. Probably Dorothy worries about it, too.’

July twenty-fifth. ‘Early walk with Krishnaji, Dr. Parchure, and me. Krishnaji held the second question-and-answer meeting, and he answered three questions. Magdalina and her husband came to lunch. At 4 p.m., Krishnaji saw a swami Yogamudrananda Saraswati, who turned out to be a youngish, rather brash woman who rather called Krishnaji to account for not following traditional guru lines.’ [S chuckles.] ‘She knew nothing about his teachings, and wasted his time. He then saw the Siddoo sisters and meanwhile I brought Nadia Kossiakof up to tea with me, and she saw Krishnaji too when he finished with the others. Mar de Manziarly can no longer live alone in Paris and is going to California to live with her sister, Yo. It was a very hot day.’

The twenty-sixth of July. ‘Early walk. Krishnaji held the third question-and-answer meeting, thereby ending this summer’s series. He covered six questions. It was a very hot day. We lunched quietly. He saw Magdalina at 5 p.m. for touch. It was too hot for the late walk.’

The twenty-seventh. ‘We both slept late, and didn’t walk. “Whole body is tired,” he said. I took Dr. Parchure to see the ailing Donald Dennis and did errands. We lunched quietly. Krishnaji slept most of the morning and afternoon. It was very, very hot. Nicole Philippeau and her children came to tea with me, bringing a little bird carving. She was a French woman who had two children, a little boy and a little girl, and she eventually married, though it was much after this time…

S: Alain Maroger, Jean-Michel’s brother.

M: Alain Maroger, yes. Her name at this time, however, was Philippeau. ‘It was too hot for the afternoon walk. I telephoned to Dorothy and Filomena.’

July twenty-eighth. ‘Harsh came to lunch. In the afternoon, Krishnaji gave an interview to a Swiss German radio network, and a Jeanne Chevalier took photographs. I went to tea with Rita Zampese at the chalet where she stays.’

July twenty-ninth. ‘Dr. Parchure, having treated everyone else, is finally down with the virus, but got up to come with Krishnaji for a fasting blood sugar test by Dr. Rolf Steiger’s at 8:15 a.m. which read 110, and again after lunch, when it suddenly, surprisingly, was 86. Based on this, he reduced Krishnaji’s dose of Rastinon to half a tablet.’

The thirtieth. ‘Krishnaji and I went for the 6:45 a.m. walk. It was a radiant morning. It is a sense of blessing to walk with him on our familiar path. We walked quite fast, his asking me to set the pace, and it is outwardly a march, but then it is the marvelous continuing joy of summer mornings with him. Dr. Parchure has fever and the standard cough, so he remained in bed. I marketed and then met Scott in Saanen to bring him up to stay for a few days in Tannegg in the little room. Kathy left for England yesterday. Krishnaji, Scott, and I lunched. Gisèle Balleys came for coffee and talked about a possible Swiss school. A Mr. Grohe wants to back it. At 5 p.m., Krishnaji saw Bobby de Pomereaux who has become disabled.’ I don’t remember much about him. ‘It was too hot to walk in the afternoon. Europe is baking in a heat wave everywhere. It is stifling.’

July thirty-first. ‘Krishnaji, Scott, and I went for the early walk at 6:45 a.m. It is cool then, but the heat in the afternoon is stifling, and dominates everything. We had a quiet day. Dr. Parchure is better. He got up.’

August first. ‘We had walked in the morning again, and also did so in the late afternoon in the beginning of a light, welcome rain. The weather is breaking at last. In spite of it being a national holiday, the shops were open, and Scott helped me market. Dr. Parchure is better. In the morning, Krishnaji saw Mr. Grohe, the man who is interested in starting a Swiss school. Nice man,’ [chuckles] ‘says Krishnaji, who invited him to visit Brockwood. Krishnaji, Parchure, Scott, and I lunched.’

S: There were very funny little things here that should be recorded. Of course, I wanted money for Brockwood, and I was always looking for money for the video, and for all different things. And Gisèle wanted to start another school, but Krishnaji wasn’t keen on starting other schools.

M: No, he wasn’t. No.

S: Not at all. And I can remember there was a little bathroom that looked out onto the driveway, wasn’t there?

M: At Tannegg? Yes, that was Krishnaji’s bathroom.

S: That’s right, that was Krishnaji’s bathroom. So, I can remember Krishnaji looking out of that window at Grohe as Grohe had just come up to have this first meeting with Krishnaji. And there was very much the sense that yes, Krishnaji was going to talk to this potential donor, but that he wasn’t going to encourage the donor to give money to a Swiss school.

M: Krishnaji siphoned the whole thing to Brockwood.

S: I know, [laughing] and it was very funny, because I remember that Krishnaji was pleased with this first meeting they had. And, of course, there was no mention of not giving the money to the Swiss school, so there was just a very nice meeting, and I think there was looking at plans for a building that Gisèle and he had found, etcetera. But you could just tell that Krishnaji had already planted the seeds for this Swiss school project not going ahead. And Krishnaji never said anything about it, but you could tell afterward that Krishnaji was pleased. [Both laugh.]

M: And Krishnaji invited him to visit Brockwood.

S: Yes. But I can remember, for some reason I was standing in Krishnaji’s bathroom with him, because I could see he was looking out the window at Grohe and sizing him up. [Laughs.]

M: That bathroom was…one of the mad ladies who was after him tried to grab him through that window. [Both laugh.]

August second. ‘Krishnaji, Scott, and I walked at 6:45 a.m. in rain!’ I put an exclamation point after that. ‘The weather has broken at last. We are deliciously cool.’

August third. ‘I woke up to snow on all the high mountains and the Wasserngrat, too. It was too wet for an early morning walk. Krishnaji dictated letters to Sunanda and Pama. He is uneasy about them, and has lost confidence in them. I did errands in the village with Scott. I made risotto milanese for lunch. Krishnaji treated Robert de Pomereaux. Then he, Scott, and I drove to Lauenensee. It was wonderfully cool—cold, really. We walked the short distance to the lake, but it was too cold for Krishnaji. His body does not generate warmth enough. We came back into rain, but I felt I had touched the mountains. Pupul telephoned from Madras. They are to have a KFI meeting Saturday about the Shankar and Krishnakutti mess at Bangalore. Krishnaji gave them authority to fire both of them and later had me call Pupul back to say that Krishnakutti should be asked to resign from the Krishnamurti Foundation. Krishnaji is disturbed that the Foundation has let this situation grow. They should have stopped it in the very beginning.’

August fourth. ‘It is clear and cold. Krishnaji, Scott, and I walked at 6:45 a.m. Krishnaji refused my gloves as his hands were chilled. I did errands afterwards, and got him long wool underpants and wool gloves. Krishnaji is against Scott’s plan to go mountain climbing tomorrow. He should not for pleasure do dangerous things.’

S: I know.

M: You didn’t go, I assume.

S: [laughs] Well, Krishnaji kept me there. [Both laugh.] I wasn’t supposed to come to stay at Tannegg at all. As soon as the talks were over, Kathy was supposed to go back to Brockwood, and I was supposed to go off climbing. But I was invited by you two to stay at Chalet Tannegg, [chuckles] and so, of course, how would anything prevent me from doing that?

M: But you were thinking of coming to Tannegg for just one day.

S: Yes, I was just going to come to Tannegg for a day or two. And then it just dragged on, and it dragged on, and eventually I said to Krishnaji—because he didn’t say anything to me about not climbing.

M: Oh? Did he know you were mountain climbing-inclined?

S: Oh, yes, and he knew that was my plan. Yes, and he knew I climbed every summer. So, it was after he kept extending my stay, inviting me to say longer, I said to him, “Krishnaji, you’re just keeping me from climbing, aren’t you?” And he said, “Yes.” [Both chuckle.] And that’s when he told me that I mustn’t do something that’s dangerous, and especially not just for fun. “Your life no longer belongs to you,” he said.

M: …belongs to you. Yes, yes. We both got those instructions. Mine were less dramatic. I wasn’t supposed to fly around unnecessarily. Not that I did much flying around unnecessarily, but even so.

S: Yes, and I can remember that that summer also was the first time he was reluctant for you to fly to…

M: Rome.

S: To Rome. And I can remember exactly, we were on the usual walk, and that was the first time Krishnaji talked to me about how when there is something very good, that that which isn’t good tries to attack it; and when it can’t get to that which is very good, it gets to those who are close to that which is good. Which put you and me in danger.

M: That’s right.

S: Krishnaji had never talked about that with me before. And, at some point, and I can’t remember if it was at this time or some other time, but Krishnaji felt it was an especially  dangerous period.

M: Yes. The bad can’t reach him, so we mustn’t give the bad an opportunity to do harm to him through you or me. And, therefore, we mustn’t do anything dangerous. And I wasn’t supposed to fly, and years earlier, I said, ‘But, Krishnaji, I should go to see my mother in Martha’s Vineyard. I have to fly to get there.’ He said, oh, no, that’s alright. But if it was unnecessary flying I had to avoid it. For instance, if I were to fly up for lunch in San Francisco for no reason, which I wasn’t doing anyway, but that kind of thing was unnecessary flying. If you have to go…

S: Yes. And, unfortunately, Krishnaji saw mountain climbing as unnecessary. [Both chuckle.]

M: That was your bad karma. [S laughs.] Yes.

S: You see, I never had much time in between the end of the Saanen talks and having to get back to set up for the Brockwood talks. So it was…[both chuckle].

M: Of course. You sound a little wistful.

S: Yes, and if I remember correctly, and it might be in your diaries, but once it was getting late and I didn’t have much time left and also bad weather had set in, Krishnaji said that I could go now if I wanted.

M: [chuckles] He did?

S: [laughs] Yes. It’s not like he was kicking me out, but it was, you know, he wasn’t pressing me to stay anymore. [Both laugh.]

M: Anyway, to continue. Yes. ‘Krishnaji is against Scott’s plan to go mountain climbing tomorrow. He should not for pleasure do dangerous things. It is irresponsible. Then in afternoon, he said, “And you”’—underlined—‘“you are going to Rome.” He feels this is outside the line of what I need to do, and this gives an opportunity of something antagonistic to him at strike. “As long as you are with me, I feel you are safe. And you are safe at Ojai, going there, etcetera. But anything unnecessary is taking a chance.” He feels that something has always been there, but lately there has been more of things antagonistic. The fire. Rajagopal’s attack. Dorothy’s illness. He said, “I am very watchful. When we went on that ride to Lauenensee, Scott is a good driver, but I was watchful. When we go in an airplane, I do something to protect. When we walk in the wood, I say, ‘May we come in?’ I am careful.” I listened and felt what the visit means to Filomena, my not going last year, my promise to see her this year, the hurting of a dear sick person who may not live much longer. He is asking me to hurt her, not asking it, but it comes to that. But beyond anything, I must put his protection first. Krishnaji treated Robert de Pomereaux at 4:30 p.m., and then we walked again through the woods. I slept little.’

August fifth. ‘I awoke knowing I could not go to Rome. Krishnaji, Scott, and I walked at 6:45 a.m. Krishnaji wore a beret, his new long underpants, and wool gloves, but the latter were not enough to keep his hands warm. After breakfast, I told him I was not going to Rome next week, but need to know what I can tell Filomena. Am I never to go? What is the degree of danger? By air is a greater danger, next by car, and train is less. He had thought of sending Parchure with me as far as Geneva. He said for the remainder of this year, I shouldn’t go to Rome. If something happened to me now, “What would I do?” “I care for you. That is the basis of all this. Nothing must happen to you.” Whatever the danger is, it is aimed at him, not me. But if I’m too far from his orbit, it could strike at him through me. Rajagopal is part of the menace, but it does not emanate from him. He is filled with it, but not the source. At present, there is a rise in it. The case. The present trouble in Bangalore and the Indian Foundation, etcetera. So, for this time, extra precaution. I telephoned Filomena, who seemed to understand. I put it that it was a time of difficulty, and she took it with her own dear and rare generosity, saying I must do what is best for Mr. Krishnamurti. I said I would ring her tomorrow after talking to Miranda on her wedding day. I went to undo my air ticket, change Hertz arrangements, etcetera. Krishnaji, Dr. Parchure, Scott, and I lunched at Chlösterli. It was the first time Krishnaji had ever been there. The very fresh vegetables from their garden pleased him, and he said, “Let’s come again tomorrow.” What began as giving Fosca a day’s rest turned into a nice outing. On the way back, we went to a ski shop and got him mittens to wear on a glacier.’ [Chuckles.] Very warm mittens. ‘Krishnaji was tired, so no second walk. Only nice naps. I typed his letter to Pupul about Bangalore, and Krishnakutti and Shankar troubles.’

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[1] Hyperlink for a video of July 12, 1983. Back to text.

[2] Hyperlink for talk of July 14, 1983. Back to text.

[3] Hyperlink for a video of Krishnaji and Mary on this, their typical walk, in Gstaad, made by students. Back to text.