Dr John Horton - Devotee Of Prem Rawat (Maharaji)
Dr John Horton has been one of Rawat's most important devotees. He has been Rawat's personal physician, who at one time gave up his medical career to become an initiator, is an author in collusion with Timothy gallwey and the source of some of the most ridiculous medical theories known to man. In the early 1970's Divine Light Mission successful growth phase, premies still believed and claimed that meditating with the techniques of Guru Maharaj Ji's (aka Prem Rawat) Knowledge was both an experience of God and a one way ticket to perfect bliss. Before it became apparent that these claims were mainly hype and wild exaggeration many premies looked for some physiological explanation for the amazing effects this practice was going to have. The usual suspect was the pineal gland (a small peanut shaped organ in the midst of the brain).
Drs Horton, Edd Hanzelik and Robert Hallowitz were the three medicos who worshipped the young Prem Rawat as the current Incarnation of God and Lord Of The Universe and provided the medical expertise to explain the hoped for effects of Rawat's Knowledge. With the benefit of 40 years' hindsight we can now see that not a single idea in these theories was correct. That hasn't affected Drs Horton or Hanzelik whose faith in Prem Rawat (Maharaji) is still solid as the Rock Of Ages. Despite all their early beliefs and hopes about Rawat's Knowledge proving false over time, they still are devoted to him even though he is far below their level of intelligence, competence and decency.
While Horton was fascinated with all the bongochemistry that proved to be nonsense and he could see that the Knowledge was attracting the untogether, freaky, sick and psychologically disturbed rather than the beautiful, spiritually evolved he has remained a devoted servant of Rawat's because he believes Rawat is "an incarnation" who has the power to do "anything for his devotees." ie he was an Incarnation of God. In 1979 in the Divine Times he wrote that Guru Maharaj Ji (aka Prem Rawat) was the Lord that has come to save mankind, that he felt an incomparable love for his Guru Maharaj Ji and that one of the proo" he was at least able to report that he was "finding people to be more enthusiastic about practicing Knowledge" which demonstrates that they hadn't been enthusiastic beforehand. As of 2010 Horton has a medical practice with Hanzelik and Anil Daya (a doctor they possibly chose because Daya is Rawat's daughter's name and possible successor) in Malibu and has written a book with Timothy Gallwey, The Inner Game Of Stress.
He accepted Rawat's teaching that "we need to understand the root of all disease, which is really the conflict between mind and soul. We have to come into the world to uplift people in every way." He wrote a 2,250 word essay, A Doctor's View of Knowledge which was published in the Millenium Issue of And It Is Divine which included "when the current of real life is turned on within us, we begin to glow with the perfectness of our Creator. Those who meditate upon the light experience profound changes in behavior: most of them find no more need for drugs, alcohol and cigarettes." This was particularly foolish and ironic as the teenage Rawat soon began abusing alcohol and and smoking both tobacco and marijuana once he freed himself from his family's control. Surely, as his personal doctor, Horton must have known and know of Rawat's alcohol abuse. I mean, a regular drunk as an enlightened Perfect Master? What is Horton thinking?
Back in the 1970's Horton & Hanzelik working at Shri Hans Medical Services wrote a paper in which they claimed:
Within the human body is a built-in receptor for this divine light of creation. It is the pineal gland, a small organ deep within the brain which resembles a tiny 'third eye'. Only recently did modern scientists dare to speculate upon the functions of this gland and now they say:
1) the stimulated pineal causes energy to flow through the entire body so that we can experience higher levels of consciousness
2) it causes a maturation of the central nervous system and conceptual processes, lending grace and precision to our movements and allowing us to think more clearly on an abstract level
3) it allows for the discharge of all drives, that is, it releases us from the domination of hunger, fear, thirst, lust, anger, and pride
He wrote about Rawat's 4th meditation technique, the Divine Nectar, though he provides no evidence that he could turn his tongue backwards, past his uvula and up his nasal passages:
The Knowledge of Guru Maharaj Ji not only takes man further in his evolution towards complete self-awareness, it also serves to erase destructive elements in his biological history. … Another way for us to experience the energy within us is called "drinking nectar." There is a liquid produced within us which the Bible speaks of as "the waters of life." When we are taught to drink these waters, we experience a very sweet taste which is very likely the taste of the pineal hormones, and by continually drinking this secretion, we reinforce the activity of the pineal gland, just as continual exercise of a muscle strengthens and builds it. The early "reptilian" layer of our brain imposes on us a set of primitive sense-drives and automatic, stereotyped patterns of behavior. This part of our brain is largely associated with taste and smell experiences, and when the beautiful taste of nectar is experienced, it overrides this part of the brain, releasing us from these set patterns.
In Blissing Out in Houston published in New York Review of Books, December 13, 1973, Francine du Plessix Gray wrote:
November 8: After the satsang I have dinner with the Guru's personal physician, Dr. John Horton. The doctor has an extensive theory concerning the stimulating impact of Divine Light meditation upon the pineal gland, whose increased activity will eliminate all of humanity's aggressive drives. He also explains that the Perfect Master's duodenal ulcer must be understood on three different levels: 1) the habitual physical level - constant jet-lag, changes of diet, fatigue, stress; 2) the spiritual level: it is a sign of his compassion for mankind, like the stigmata on Christ's feet; 3) the cosmic level, as a revelation of universal suffering.
The diagnostician of Perfect Master's cosmic ulcer disturbs me more than any other premie I meet because he is the brightest, the most dedicated, the nicest of the lot. He is thirty, and has had a few acid trips, which he describes. I can't understand how they can have screwed up a first-rate mind to that degree. Some pathology of affluence is at work, as it is in Galloway, Hollowitz, all the other intelligent adult premies I talk to. Horton was an all-county football star as a teenager, went to college at Dartmouth and Columbia, has his medical degree from Duke University Medical School, had two years of Freudian analysis as part of his psychiatric training, and always considered he had everything in life for happiness. But he wanted more … at one point in our conversation, he says, as Hollowitz did: 'I wanted continual ecstasy!'
Man's most basic drive, Horton says, is the transcendence of his ego; the sex drive is nothing more than one form of ego transcendence; and the transcendence offered him by the Master's twenty-four-hour meditation technique is infinitely more blissful than sex.
References: The information on this page was sourced from the following
- Blissing Out in Houston New York Review of Books, December 13, 1973
- The Way Out
- Who Is Guru Maharaj Ji?
- The Guru Game: Peace which passeth all understanding. Ramparts magazine, July 1973, page 26-35, 47-57.
- The Little Guru Without A Prayer Rolling Stone magazine, Issue No. 156 - March 14, 1974 (Page 36-50)
- Goom Rodgie's Razzle-Dazzle Soul Rush Saturday Review/World - 9th February, 1974
- Oz in the Astrodome New York Times, December 9, 1973
- InView Newsletter Summer 1989
Articles written by or interviews with Horton:
- THE PEOPLE: Personal Experiences of the Knowledge Who Is Guru Maharaj Ji? Bantam Book, November 1973 © Shri Hans Productions
- A Doctor's View of Knowledge And It Is Divine magazine, Millenium Issue, November 1973
- Drug Rehabilitation Programme - Treatise, Horton, Hanzelik, Shapiro & Peters, Shri Hans Medical Services, 2039 Broadway, New York, apparently unpublished
- Expanded Medical Awareness for Complete Health And It Is Divine magazine, Volume I, Number 5, March 1973 - "Divine Health Services" failed
- A Growing Awareness: Interview with John Horton M.D. Divine Times - October 1976 Volume 5, Number 9
- Introductory Satsang by John Horton M.D. Divine Times - May/June 1979 Volume 8, Number 3
Information about Horton's role with the teenage Prem Rawat, the Perfect Master with an ulcer:
- THE TIMES TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 4 1973
- THE TIMES TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 4 1973
- New York Review of Books, December 13, 1973
- THE DAILY TIMES Salisbury, Md., Mon., Sept. 3, 1973
- THE DAILY TIMES Salisbury, Md., Mon., Sept. 3, 1973
- Rolling Stone Magazine - Issue No 145 - October 11, 1973
- Rolling Stone Magazine - Issue No 156 - March 14, 1974
- Texas Monthly Magazine, January 1974
- Soul Rush by Sophia Collier, Chapter 12
- The Guardian, Thursday July 14, 1999
- All God's Children The Cult Experience: Salvation or Slavery? Carrol Stoner and Jo Anne Parke