IN THE BEGINNING
On Thursday 25th November, twelve delegates from the English Mission left England on the late night ferry to Zeebrugge. Travelling in three cars were: David Lovejoy, the national co-ordinator and his wife Wendy, Alan Saunders, his assistant, and Roger Branson, film cameraman; Bruce Corbin from Edinburgh (and initiator candidate), Nick Seymour-Jones from Manchester, Ramesh from the Leicester Indian community and Robin Heslop from London, married initiator candidate; Peter Dawson and Guy Pollock, both initiator candidates from London, Peter Ponton, initiator candidate from Banbury, and John Sheridan, from London.
Bobby Hendry, already in Frankfurt to cook for Maharaj Ji, and John Sheridan, London community co-ordinator, describe how they felt before the conference:
Q: And how were you feeling beforehand?
BOBBY: Well I was feeling intense, like excited. There was specifically that because that's what I noticed the most. I was getting very excited, but the excitement wasn't normal it was something I hadn't encountered before. And I had great deal of trouble trying to stop myself being excited. I came to the conclusion that it was mainly because I wasn't balanced properly. Also I hadn't been working regularly for the last 2 or 3 months since I left Banbury, and it was like I didn't have some-thing to ground me, to keep me grounded. And I also knew that I was going to be seeing Maharaj Ji in a month, maybe 5 weeks beforehand, so I had a lot of time to think about it.
Q: Did you expect the conference to come up with some major new direction, or changes in the premie community not related to the initiator thing?
BOBBY: Yes and no. Because I was feeling that we were very strongly needing something, and looking for something, that we would get it. It's always been my experience since taking Knowledge that whatever we expect strongly from Maharaj Ji we get the opposite. So I knew something strong would happen, because we needed it. I felt we needed it, I felt I needed it. I thought the community needed it. But I didn't think we'd get what we expected, because it's never happened that way.
Q: And how was it? How was it on a personal level?
BOBBY: This time for me it was kind of curious, because I wasn't able to just be at ease with Maharaj Ji, so much, although it was just as open; it was like really far out to be with Maharaj Ji, but I felt a large part of my attention was in actually what was happening at the conference. Really a large part. And that was for two reasons: because that's what was actually happening to Maharaj ji while he was there, I mean 90 per cent of his energy was taken up in the conference - as it turned out it was a very important conference; and because I'd been so involved in the community before I went, I was really interested in how it was going along.
Q: How were you feeling before the conference began, personally and about the whole community, how it should be going?
JOHN SHERIDAN: I seemed pretty positive about the community, the way it's been going this year, the way it's developed, and personally I felt O.K., reasonably together and on top of the whole thing. I felt I understood what was necessary to sort out. The points about initiators etc. I didn't expect the conference to be anything like it was. I expected that we were going to get an extension of the directions we had already got. I thought we would get most of our ideas O.K.'d and in the event it turned out completely different We had that conference in Banbury and we worked out what we thought were the basic problems. We realised that to expand our situation we needed more initiators; we realised that there was plenty of energy. I realised that from my experience in London. Satsang was quite high; we had plenty of aspirants, because we've got 200 aspirants. I realised we needed at least one initiator to run the whole aspirant programme, to help people to develop their capacity to be involved in that programme. So personally I was very interested to see if we could get an initiator out of this training programme. I was more interested in that than anything else really. Various other people were interested in the chance of there being married initiators. Nobody was seeing that service too clearly.
SATURDAY IN BRIEF
On Friday afternoon we arrived at the hotel in Frankfurt. The initiator candidates had some satsang that evening with Arthur Brigham, but things did not really get moving till the next day. Mike outlined the conference situation, and emphasised how much Guru Maharaj Ji looked upon it as his conference. Then when all the problems started coming out of all the different countries, we realised that there were so many different situations that the best thing would be to divide into groups with roughly similar ideas and backgrounds. We joined up with Ireland, Canada and Australia - the Anglo Saxon group.
Q: What were you discussing?
JOHN: We were going over our common points. We just felt that communication with Maharaj Ji was the most important thing; that the initiator programme was an important thing and that the ashram was an important thing. We felt that there were various other smaller problems that were also important. We wanted to be really clear in our own minds exactly what we wanted to present to Maharaj Ji because it became more obvious as we were talking that we weren't having common
understanding of what we were trying to convey. Even the 12 English people didn't have a common understanding of what they were going to talk about.
Q: Did you find that the Canadian and Australian premies had the same problems?
JOHN: On the whole we're in similarly developed situations and so there seemed to be a common interest amongst us. We had more common experience than most of the other European countries. We met most of that afternoon and on into the evening. We didn't really feel ready to meet Maharaj Ji who was coming the next day, so we carried on talking until we felt we'd really talked everything out. When we finished we all felt very empty, we really felt like, O.K., we were empty, we had talked our minds to a standstill, and we were ready to face the next day, when Maharaj Ji was going to come.
Q: Did you have some different things fixed that you wanted to present to him?
JOHN: We didn't want to do it that way, to write down a whole list of questions or demands. We felt that that might be a bit impertinent. We just wanted to get a common understanding amongst ourselves about what kind of areas we would like to see Maharaj Ji cover when he was talking. We didn't really have any idea of what was going to happen the next day, but we wanted to be very empty. There was still a bit of funny feeling between us as a group; we weren't so close, but we were a lot closer than before and we were empty, which was good.
Sunday started with Mike Dettmers giving an opening address to the conference:
MIKE DETTMERS: Today he does want to come and meet with all of us, just to pick up a feeling of how everybody is feeling. Yesterday he called it being open and today he really wanted to have a feeling that everybody was really understanding and experiencing our fundamental reason. I know there are a lot of things that we would like to share with Guru Maharaj Ji - a lot of points, a lot of concerns, a lot of situations, that we feel we represent, that we can best present to him, and Maharaj ji respects that. But even more than that he realises that he has something more fundamental to give to all of us and that has nothing to do with the fact that at this point in time we happen to be administrators or representatives or co-ordinators within his mission, but just people who were looking for truth. And that point is much more fundamental and common to all of us and that's the thing that he can give us, and that's his work.
Sometimes I feel Maharaj Ji could do or say or make whatever changes, or give us exactly the input, that we're looking for, but I suspect sometimes that if he felt that we weren't really at a place of understanding - and he determines that - how can he feel confident that we can then be effective communicators, or effective links in communicating the fundamental message which is the growth of consciousness in whatever form we perceive it has to be done in our countries? That's why I don't think he'll come in here with a fixed agenda, and get right into it. I think he'll want to open it up and really feel what we're feeling and the more open we are, the more centred we are, the more productive the time spent will be. I don't know how he'll proceed specifically, but he was open to the fact that we do represent different concerns and maybe individual or private sessions may be appropriate, depending on the time available to us.
Because it's just hard to think that any of us can be a substitute for his direct input in areas that just demand it. He was pleased that the focus is being maintained on him. I felt that today that would be realised. Yesterday was warm up. We were able to get a little clearer on the points we wanted to cover; maybe we got a little clearer as to what we were feeling. I did feel that at the beginning there was a lot of anxiety, there was a lot of pressure on some people who have come here to represent not only themselves but the interests of their communities, and have a certain legitimate feeling that they would rather go back with some answers. And I was not dismissing that in any sense; but I was trying to say that it's possible that our own anxiety can limit the effectiveness of the input that Maharaj Ji can give. So it's good that not only has that anxiety been expressed but also there's been a lot of satsang and there's feeling that O.K., now Maharaj Ji's here let's just give him a little space that he needs in order to get warmed up to get involved. I don't think there's much more to say on that.
Mike then suggested that some of the community co-ordinators should come and let everyone know what was happening in their communities, while we were waiting for Guru Maharaj Ji to come.
After about an hour, Maharaj Ji arrived. He came in followed by Raja Ji, sat down at his desk and got straight on with the conference.
GURU MAHARAJ JI:
First of all I'd like to start by trying to explain to you why we are holding this conference. Simply the reason being, this conference was actually motivated for a different purpose altogether. The reason why this conference was basically due to take place was to hand you a book, and tell you what to do, how to run your part of the organisation. We were going to discuss, not particularly me, but other people, were going to discuss finance and discuss other of our objects.
But before I left America there was an incredible amount of change that we brought about and that was in terms of I.H.Q., in terms of centralisation. The centralisation that existed till now I tore apart and I made it so that the I.H.Q. did not exist the way that it was existing, but it only existed around me. Period. So I.H.Q. now is only the office of Guru Maharaj Ji and there are not other people involved in it and I think the only thing that should be centralised is the spiritual aspect of this organisation. Because other objects such as finances, such as how to run your own organisation in your area, well if you are quite capable of doing it then you can take care of those things yourself; and that is what you are there for.
The directors, the co-ordinators, are to take care of your needs like just finances, co-ordinations. That does not mean that you have to be satisfied with the spiritual aspect, because you yourself are premies and that is something that maybe you cannot provide for the premies.
And the direction that has to come, the direction that has to be given to you, has to be spiritual. This is what everybody has to internationally share. So, therefore, the spiritual aspect of this organisation has been made more centralised, and I.H.Q. has been made so it is directly involved with me, instead of being involved with other people and this is the reason that we have decided to participate in this conference because I'd like to make you understand about a few things that have been happening.
First of all, I'm sure you have a lot of questions which you'd like to ask, but before you ask those questions to me, I'd like you to ask a few questions to yourself in terms of how much meditation have you really been doing in the past, how involved you have gotten in your service. Have you gotten too involved in your service as to not be able to dedicate enough time to meditation? Have you gotten too involved in co-ordinating satsang programmes and co-ordinating so many different things that you have forgotten about satsang and that, in fact, if somebody gets up and starts giving satsang in your ashram or local community you really don't pay any attention to that and go to sleep while the person is giving satsang? Because if that is starting to happen, then it is a very strange thing, because our understanding as premies consists of three things. That is when you can call a person a premie - when he's exercising service, satsang and meditation. That is when you are totally a premie; if you're not a premie then you cannot be a co-ordinator, you cannot participate in this organisation. That is a question that you have to ask yourselves before you start to ask me. (Laughter). I have just done the Lima conference and I have also been in a conference in South Africa and a lot of the questions that were put to me were questions really of mind; you could most definitely tell that the questions were coming from a wrong place. There was not a question, not a problem that really existed in terms of real facts; but it was a problem that really mind had.
While our purpose is totally different; our purpose is to get out of mind and to get into Knowledge, and how we have to motivate it. This is how we have to motivate all the premies, to get out of the mind and to get into this process - this process of service, satsang and meditation. And if we ourselves are not doing that satsang, service and meditation, then it is very difficult for us to motivate other people to do satsang, service and meditation, and when that starts to happen there is a breakdown in the communication which you experience, you see, no matter what is happening, when you start to lose the focus from satsang, service and meditation It's like, we start to wander and it becomes unclear where our direction is, where our direction is coming from, and a lot of people have lost touch
with the base. We have to all really come together and make that connection again, with Satsang, service and meditation and with that true Knowledge and Guru Maharaj Ji. And this is what I'm doing - helping you to understand. Any questions about that?
Let's just generalise all our problems, the problems we are facing. I'd like to explain a little in detail of what I've just told you, and I think that the best we can do, we can have a few questions thrown around and find out exactly where it is all coming from.
ROBIN HESLOP: Guru Maharaj Ji, with the situation with Initiators, is there a possibility that a married person may do that service?
GURU MAHARAJ JI: There is a lot of distance in that question. That question from the middle of nowhere, because, first of all, you have to evaluate the situation. Do you understand what is the service of the initiator?
ROBIN: Yes, Maharaj Ji.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: What is it?
ROBIN: Initiating people in the experience of the Knowledge of Truth.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: That is it?
ROBIN: And imparting your understanding of the experience of Knowledge.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: And what do you think it really involves?
ROBIN: 100 per cent dedication and total surrender.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Total surrender. You are right, therefore it answers your question. No. You see, if a person is married, that is a responsibility that he has to face, and it is going to be that one thing. Because, you see, initiator service although maybe it sounds like it is not too much it is really a lot. It is really something else. It takes a lot of strength, a lot of clarity, a lot of constant clarity. You cannot just come in and go out, and say, "OK, well my job is done now, I have worked for 6 hours now, I can go home, relax, be with my wife." It is a very strong service and a person has to be really, really clear about it. So I think that if you look back at your question you' will find that it'll be virtually impossible for a married person to do the service of an initiator.
It seems there is no purpose to this conference. (Laughter).
NICK SEYMOUR-JONES: Maharaj Ji, we met together, the U.K. premies, Canadian, Irish and Australian premies and there seems to be about 3 or 5 areas to discuss. Something we were not really clear about was the ashrams and the communication with you. I do not know how to phrase the question exactly, but we feel the way the community has grown and changed, and the people are more responsible, so in the U.K., where there are no ashrams at all, we were wondering how the initiator could be there, if he was not in an ashram.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Well I think there is a lot of loose end information given there. The initiator also can double up as an ashram super-visor but it does not go the other way round. The initiator has to be available and hopefully they will be in the ashram. Because, you see, a lot of premies have left the ashram because of the whole thing that was started from Denver. It was not my idea, believe me, it was this process of re-evaluation. If you see a spider on the ceiling and you say 'kill' and the guy picks up a knife and stabs you in the stomach that is really undefined: You have to say 'kill that spider, not me.' There was a lot of this evaluation process and so on and so forth, going on and lot of people started to evaluate. What did they evaluate in the period of evaluation? Their mind! Where were they at, and the mind really kicked up and right now they are out of the ashram. They do not know what they are doing out there. They're really lost. It is like they're really having a hard time just to be able to pull themselves together and to be still doing satsang service and meditation.
They're really having a hard time and that is just not my idea. My idea is first get strong. What are we trying to evaluate? We have already evaluated what's out there. That's why we came to Knowledge and we came to Knowledge and we started to evaluate that. Where the hell are we supposed to go next? Back into the world? It is like a record that's got a broken groove in it. You put it on and it just slips back and back and back and back. It's like the whole thing was sharing. Share what? Share our experience. If somebody was feeling really bad they would share their bad experience with you. Then you start to feel bad.
A lot of people's minds weren't kicking up so strong. When those people got out there was a lot of opportunity for mind to get loose. If you read my satsangs, they go along the line of 'Don't give this mind a chance to leap.' Because it will try to get the first chance possible. If you give that opportunity to the mind it'll take advantage of it. The advantage it'll take is to completely take you away from satsang, service and meditation. When premies are doing satsang, service and meditation, they're clear, they know what is happening. When premies are not doing satsang, service and meditation they are unclear.
What is the organisation? (Asks Peter Dawson)
PETER DAWSON: It's a bunch of people who are organised together for a common purpose.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Yes, of course, but what is this organisation, this particular organisation?
PETER: This particular organisation is supposed to propagate Guru Maharaj Jis Knowledge.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: O.K. that's true. But
look what else it's doing. In this organisation a lot of other things are being done. It's like a bear trap. Everybody seems to put their foot in and get caught up in it. That's why there's a lot of rejection among the community of premies of this organisation. Because it's like there's a separation. They feel a separation. They feel that independently they can do a lot more than they can actually do through this organisation. But that's not the way it's supposed to be. It's supposed to be that they could do a lot more through this organisation than they could do independently. That's the way it's supposed to be.
And this is why we have all assembled here, to actually clearly define what is the role of this organisation, and what is your service in your organisation. And to find out in general, just in a very brief sense how much base we have lost from our original point, and what it is going to take us to get back to where we want to be.
See, first of all we have to understand that this organisation is made to help Guru Maharaj Ji, it's like a tool. But at the moment, if Guru Maharaj Ji wants to use it, he has to get a crane to pick it up and hire another bunch of people from outside to use it, in terms of just the manoeuvrability that it might have provided for us. Because it has become so huge in the sense of so much organisation. Community directors and co-ordinators must experience this when they go back and see piles of paper sitting on their desks. What are those piles of papers doing? They carry around, you know, huge piles of paper. What are those papers really doing. We have lost the purpose of the organisation and got involved in the organisation itself. And even doing that we haven't done such a wonderful job, because we have gone backwards.
We have gone into the small village and we have opened up a hotel. And we started off with 800 rooms, 300 storeys, parking facilities for 50,000 (laughter) and the whole population of the village put together is not more than 3000. And it's completely ridiculous and it's not a tourist spot, it's nothing. So we build this whole huge complex, and a huge shopping centre and we build a huge everything. and then we sit there for a little while, and nothing happens, nobody comes. All we utilise is one storey. Then we say, "O.K., we'll take the top floor off, and we can take this part of the complex 'off." Then we look back and again say, "O.K., nobody's using the second storey, so you can take the second storey off." And this is what we keep on doing. Then we have a rush on and say, "No, let's put back the storey that we just took off." And we are so involved in putting this back on, revaluing it and taking it off that we always work back-wards in this organisation.
And I'll give you an example. In Denver we've moved into this Kitteridge Building. It's a nice building and it has problems. We had all these departments and I don't know, if you asked me off-hand how many departments we had I was unaware of how many departments there were. Because I just didn't find it very interesting to find out. (laughter). A communications department, a … what else (laughter) but there were so many departments. But now in America people are realising that there is no necessity for that, and so they are trimming it off, they are streamlining the whole process, the whole organisation. And that's what I call working backwards! Because the needs of the organisation should have been looked at before. And then the whole thing should have been designed that way, with the manoeuvrability to expand onto it, at any time it needed. And this is what we have at a lot of places.
We have worked backwards with the organisation, and when we have done this we have gone into community meetings and said that we need secretaries, we need 4 typists, we need 7 of these and 8 of this. And we've got all these premies together, starting to function, and all of a sudden, it's like, all these people are sitting at these tables and they don't know what to do. Because there is really nothing for them to do and so slowly and slowly and slowly they start to get confused. Then the whole thing becomes confused because of unproper definition, which was the big thing for a little while. There was a lot of talk going around about unproper definition. Proper definition was defined the day you came to receive Knowledge, and if you forgot that, the day you came to receive Knowledge, and received Knowledge, then you had it anyway.
The definition was that very day. It was this Knowledge. To spread this Knowledge. To become a devotee. To be a premie and to really understand, to really spread this Knowledge. And our definition was to do service, satsang and meditation. One of the services that we could possibly have done was to organise things a little better. Maybe co-ordinate it a little bit more.
But if we work backwards then it's really really difficult. And it's really hard, and I think that is a difficulty a lot of people are experiencing, trying to slow everything down, to cut everything down. So that is what our problem really is. I think this is the way I identify it. I think we have lost touch with our base and we are too far off, suddenly we are looking at our speedometer. We are looking at all of our meters, and we're supposed to be there. But something is just not clicking, we are supposed to be moving.
If you take 1974 and project our growth it should have quadrupled. But actually it has gone down, not up. Why is this happening? The present premies are not satisfied. They would like to be left alone, by the organisation. So what has gone wrong, what has really happened? Where are the directors? Why is there a sense of the good guy and the bad guy with the bad guy as the community director? Why is it that these questions are starting to come up that maybe we should elect our own community director, our community co-ordinator and our national director?
I mean, people have got to be so stupid not to understand, not to be able to foresee, that if these elections start happening in this organisation … have you ever seen elections anybody? (Laughter). Have you ever seen what happens? There's one guy that gets up and says, 'I'm going to do this, and I'm
going to do this." you know, "cut down this and cut back that. I'm going to extend this." Another guy says, "but we are already doing it."
I've just come from America. I've seen the whole thing, you know -- Jimmy Carter and the elections. I can project that if you start having elections in this organisation, that within a very short time, they're going to be the candidates, they're going to get up in their community. Already there is a shortage of satsang in their communities. There's a lot of chit chat going on, people get up and they talk about this and they talk about that and it's not pure satsang. It's chit chat, that I've defined to you already. I think you're quite well aware of it. Also the satisfaction you get from chit chat and the satisfaction you get from satsang, there's a vast difference and I think there's no difficulty distinguishing that.
These people are going to get up, these candidates are going to get up and say, "Yes, if you make me a community director, I'll let you stay out of the ashram longer at night-times. If you do this I'll make you my secretary, you'll have all the fringe benefits you want, and so on and so forth, and this is going to happen. This is already starting to happen on a very clear scale where people want to enjoy privileges and it's really crazy.
It's just like barely you can see the line of the horizon, and people are just starting to get into that, you know, we should have this and we should have that and we should have this and we should get paid and we should get this and people want more money. Because they're getting into their mind. This is what we have to understand.
First of all, it's like I'm just giving you a general feeling of what we're going to be discussing (laughter) this afternoon. First let us look at things from a totally different angle and forget everything that you have heard, in the past four months except satsang. Forget everything! Because you see there's a lot of craziness that is happening, there's a lot of unclear direction. That is the reason I have watched people take it on themselves to give direction.
I was reading a letter written by some premies from Ireland.
TOM OGLESBY: Here.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: The big thick letter that you sent to South Africa.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Yeah, I can't find it. I had just started to read it in South Africa.
TOM: I have a copy of it with me. (Laughter).
GURU MAHARAJ JI: But it was like, you were right, you know, and that's the way a lot of things have happened. It's like a big bundle. And it says, `This is agya'. Stamped, it's rubber stamped. Rubber stamped by whom? Rubber stamped by me, `This is agya'. So a package is sent to you in which maybe one thing is agya. But it says agya right on but there's supposed to be agya in there. Technically, yes it is agya, but the rest of it is not. And you just take it and you just eat it, you know, that's the way it is. You look at your community and you think this is absurd. This is crazy, this is not going to help our community, this is going to be a very detrimental to our community. And you see things like that.
It's because agya is really important. Because agya is the word for direction. Direction from Guru Maharaj Ji is agya. Why do we need that direction? Can somebody answer that? Why do we need that direction? Because that's the way we work. We are revealed this Knowledge, our mind still wanders off wherever it goes.
But if we can have that agya, if we can have that direction, from Guru Maharaj Ji in which we can set our guidelines, in which we can set our tracks, then our chances of getting spaced out are a lot less. If we can get exactly clear direction, it's a lot easier to work with than to try to sit down and to try to make a decision on your own. So it's like, that is why agya is really important. And this is why there's this whole change that is coming about again, that I am bringing, that I am inspiring.
It is because the amount of this other agya that is not agya, that has been thrown around with the agya, has cost me too much. I've seen this Mission just go bzzzz right now and that's too much for me to bear, it's too much for me to pay for just because somebody's stupid enough
to do this, going around and giving anything, any kind of direction, any kind of direction that is possible. So that is the reason that we are here.
We're going to be discussing initiators, just because that is going to be one of the services provided by the I.H.Q. There are going to be initiators; initiators are going to be provided by the I.H.Q., be appointed by Guru Maharaj Ji. And all the monitoring of the initiators is going to be done by me. So that is one of the roles that I.H.Q. is going to play. Another role that I.H.Q.'s going to play is the ashram; it is going to personally supervise the ashram for the guidelines that have been set. Because I know, quite well that ashram rules, ashram guidelines, are really not being followed - that is an understatement. People are doing whatever they want to, you know. They go out; people go out, maybe get drunk. That is the time they should be sitting down and doing meditation. They come home to the ashram, they're zonked, and then they get up in the morning and say, `Guru Maharaj Ji, I'm confused.'
What's Guru Maharaj Ji supposed to do-kick you in the butt and say, "What did you do that for? You know, it's like, it is us, it is our personal life. I have to look at that because there is no point in those people staying in the ashram. That is what the ashram is going to provide then - nothing. Because there is a specific guideline, there is a specific circumstance, that has to be created, and this circumstance has to be followed. That is why it is there; and when people don't follow that, that's no good. But that is one of the things that I.H.Q.'s going to look at. Of course, we have the festivals.
That is going to be done by the request of all the premies where it is deemed necessary to have them, but that is going to happen in the future. And that's pretty much all the service that going to be involved in. But any problems that occur in day-to-day activities that you have, so far as they are spiritual. You are personally responsible for your communities, for your regions, because you are the national director, or national co-ordinator - I keep saying director; that word is co-ordinator, not director - because you're a premie. You're working with premies. you're not a director, you're not going around giving direction, you are a premie just working with other premies in the service of Maharaj Ji. So you are a co-ordinator.
And so, that's just a generalisation of what we are going to be discussing and other problems that you might have in your local communities.
And no personal questions, please. If you are a little confused personally, then go and do some meditation. (Laughter).
No personal questions. That started happening in South Africa, and it just takes up all this time, trying to deal with personal questions. And the problem is, the person hasn't been doing enough meditation. So does everybody understand that?
See, how I decided my I.H.Q. staff was not just to pick some fortunate people. Because, have you ever been on the sixth floor, after you come from the elevator and you make a left hand turn you take a right hand and there's the whole section, there's my office there. there's like a big conference room, there's all that there; I didn't go, like, Wow, I could fill this space and that space and that space, and that space, but I worked backwards in terms of that, the right way in terms of what I thought it should be. And I looked at how many people were required.
There's me in the I.H.Q. staff, then there's - well, what do you call I.H.Q.? There's the chair-man of the initiators, which is me, there's the person who's in charge of the initiation, who the communication goes through, and that is Bill Patterson, who's at this point in charge of the initiator development programme, the ashram programme, the aspirant programme, counselling and tour schedule of the mahatmas. Then there is another person who is secretary to the communications co-ordinator, and that is Joe Anctil, who's going to be taking care of international mailings and reports, and correspondence, and my mail and press media relations. Then there's General Manager, finance and legal affairs, just in terms of the office managements, and that is Michael Dettmers; and general manager of the residence and that's really not concerned with the office of Maharaj Ji, that's a direct matter.
And, directly under me, if you can see, there's Michael who can explain this. We have a regional co-ordinator for South America. It makes it simple; it makes it easier to take care of things so far as the guy is frank and sincere. Hopefully we'll have a regional co-ordinator for America, a regional co-ordinator for Latin America, a regional co-ordinator for Europe, a regional co-ordinator for
Africa, and we have a regional co-ordinator for Asia and the Far East region; and they're directly linked up to I.H.Q. So there are actually only 3 people that are involved - the regional co-ordinator, the national co-ordinator, and community co-ordinator. The regional co-ordinator is for a whole section, the national co-ordinator is for each country, the community co-ordinator is for each community. And so that is the way that communications are going to be run. But the community co-ordinator doesn't have to throw in a report if he wants to say something; if he wants to communicate. He doesn't have to go through the national co-ordinator to send anything; he can send it direct to the I.H.Q.
(Question about the regional co-ordinator)
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Well, yes, I'll try to find somebody who I feel is a reliable person, who can do the job. Look around with a black box.
TOM OGLESBY: Guru Maharaj Ji, will he live and travel in Europe?
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Yes, he will travel in Europe; he will also be in America to work, to co-ordinate things with me. You see, there's also Raja Ji involved in this organisation. And in terms of wherever I can't go because of something, Raja Ji's going to be like an ambassador, or special emissary (Laughter). So I think I'm going to leave you for now, so you can digest whatever we have said about the general organisation, and I'll come back and pick up every point, point by point. Maybe you can have a little satsang, a little chit chat about this.
After the break.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Tomorrow we're going to take groups - like one group consisting of Ireland, U.K., Canada and so on and so forth; and the other groups that have still got problems. And we'll work it that way. And so today I'd just like to get thoroughly familiar and I'd like to see what kind of people I have working for me. And so that we all understand the purpose, understand what we are trying to do, have a bit of satsang on the side, and try to understand. So, how many countries are participating here?
What's happening with Greece?
PREMIE FROM GREECE: It does have satsang for five days every week; and we have one day coming together for service. And we have one day group meditation.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Hmm. And what happened when I was going to come to Greece? What happened?.
PREMIE: Er, the people they don't want their last secretary; they don't want him. And they want him to go away before you come.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Why was it like that?
PREMIE: Because he made many parties. He made many wrong things. They don't want him to stay in his place.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: That's kind of the wrong way to do it, isn't it? Not appealing directly to Guru Maharaj Ji when Guru Maharaj Ji comes. To go ahead and co-operate, at least co-operate with the person who was not from Greece, who was from New York, Italy. Marino, you know, he was sent there to co-operate with the premies there that at least wanted to see the function through. And then it would have been possible to appeal to me, that you guys didn't want that guy there.
PREMIE: We thought that it was the only way; that you could understand there was something wrong in Greece.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Well they could have always asked me. I was supposed to come there, but I most definitely have a very wrong impression of Greece. Because it was not a good idea to do that. I am there and for that reason, if you had anything to say I was coming. And then premies could have most clearly and distinctly stated that they didn't want that premie there and that premie could have been changed. I mean it doesn't matter if that premie is the most wonderful premie in the whole world. If he is no good to the community, then he's no good.
And then there's parties; then one party liked him, one party didn't like him. There was all this, you know, that was not such a good idea.
Personally I don't think very highly of Greece in those terms. Premies will have to really really get together, and something miraculous will have to happen in Greece before I show up. Because that's a really crazy thing to do. Thinking and using your own things you know, like thinking up a story, "Well, maybe Guru Maharaj Ji's not going to do it, so we'll do it for ourselves." What happens is that the premies suffer. No programme. That's what it did. That they threw that person out and didn't throw that person out was insignificant, compared to the fact that I was coming and there was going to be a programme. There was going to be a tour. So, what is happening now? Are premies coming together? Are premies putting together? Have the two parties been dissolved?
PREMIE: No, no; they are more together than they were.
GURU MAHARAJ JI: They are more together now?
GURU MAHARAJ JI: Mm. That's incredible.