Elan Vital Gold Coast Local Community - 1990s/2000s
The Gold Coast Elan Vital local community began in the form described here in the mid-1980s after the 1983/84 premie apocalypse and was boosted from confused minimal activity into greater energy and providing of organised information publicly after Maharaji hosted a Rejoice Event in the Gold Coast Casino for Australian premies. That was the last time I saw a house-full of premies, 20 or more sleeping everywhere. I don't recall a time when my wife didn't spend at least some evenings at meetings and Knowledge presentations but her I found this cache of documents on an old drive stored in a box for at least 15 years. The filing was somewhat haphazard and the documentrs evolved over time from Worperfect to Word formats though all the spreadshheets were Excel .xls files. I have created .html facsimiles of the original documents.
The involvement of PWKs (person/people with knowledge, formerly premie/s) on the Gold Coast and organisation of public video presentations really ramped up just before the period from which we have a significant number of documents, say 1997. The Gold Coast local pwks had formerly received information about Maharaji and recordings of his speeches through telephone calls and mailings. From 1984 there had been minimal organisation and I think only 1 or 2 people in each state were involved in this distribution. I'm not sure if they were paid or were self-supporting or if they were part-time initiators. In 1998 this was transformed by the use of emails and computers and the private encrypted First Class intranet system. Maharaji apparently decided that 25 years of meditation and satsang (His speeches) and supporting him financially had not been enough to prepare his existing followers to attract the next cohort of PWKs. He initiated training sessions, firstly with Himself and other of his high-ranking followers such as Valerio Pascotto and the filtered down thgouhout the pwk communities. The amount of communication skyrocketed as more and more pwks were caught up in the preparations for the next huge wave of new aspirants (potential converts) who were going to be attracted by Maharaji just as soon as he was sure the PWKs were capable for providing for them. Guides, formats, scripts, schedules increased exponentially but …
The enormous amount of work this entailed over the next decade proved to be worthless because Maharaji and his minions were unable to envisage the flaw in their reasoning. It is immaterial how well a business is organised, how well its procedures align with its mission statements, how well trained its personnel are. If a business has a poor product and no target market, it cannot succeed. In this case the product was only as good as Rawat could sell it and the times had changed. In the early 1970s the product, the young guru was selling, had a niche market, available for a short time-span, that hadn't been filled. He had a sales team of noisy, excited, hippieish youth. In the 1980s and later he was selling himself as Maharaji and his product, Knowledge/Self-Knowledge. There was no clear concept but seemed to be self-help and/or New Age and/or spiritual/religious and there was a lot of competition. He always claimed his product was unique but had no way of demonstrating this. His sales team was ordered to inform but not sell as if information that there was this dubious person, Maharaji who had this secret product, was enough to ignite interest and a thirst. The pwks were middle-aged, they were sincere but stodgy, cultish but not charismatic.
In 1999 in a training session Rawat said "Where do you see propagation ending up in another 5 years the way we are going unless there is major change? It's gonna drag" (makes downward curve with hand) … Now let's take the next jump is a whole another ball game and it's gonna require for people to be together, people will have to take a tremendous amount of responsibility and people are gonna have to take a tremendous amount of incentive but the incentive cannot happen in Lone Ranger style it has to happen in a synchronized fashion." - The Possibility of Peace video
The KIT (Knowledge Introduction Training) with the synchronisation available through First Class, began a period of constant service for pwks involved on the Gold Coast.
The public showing of Maharaji's videos cost money for the rental of halls, for equipment, organisational costs and for payments to Elan Vital for the cost of creating the videos and for the rights to use the videos. All of these costs, like the guru's income, came from donations, whether called payments to watch the videos at the venues, levies to Elan Vital international or directly to the local organisation's officers. This income came mostly from the 10-15% of dedicated PWKS "doing service" and then from the 25-30% regularly viewing the videos or attending other Elan Vital activities.
In the first 6 months of 1998 they had 148 presentations of Maharaji's videos, an average of 25 per month with an average of 11 pwks at each program, 1⅔ aspirants and 1½ guests. They were held in 4 rented public rooms and 1 pwk home. In late 2005/06 there were an average of 6 video events per month, with an average of 18 pwks each program, 1 aspirant and 1½ guests.
These figures do not tell how many different individual aspirants there were, how long each aspirant remained in contact with Elan Vital and how many, if any, became new PWKs and remained active. However, they certainly appear to show much time, energy and expense were provided by these pwks for very little positive result.
From 3rd March 2002 unto 30th October 2005 (1,337 days) they showed 536 videos at an average of 3 videos of Maharaji's speeches every week.
There is a list and viewer of the organisation's documents available here to learn more
Maharaji had defined an active premie: "A person who enjoys Knowledge in their life keeps in touch and participates, that's the person that is active." auto-Knowledge Maharaji has been working on a means by which Knowledge can be received with greater ease and understanding.
He had stated active premies were his advertising campaign: " if somebody asks me 'You know how can I help with the propagation in this world?' You know I say 'Well I'm not gonna advertise. I'm the Master, you are my student, you are my advertisement.'" - Connect 2000 video
When that campaign was obviously unsuccessful he relented and okayed advertising, low-key and tasteful :-) As far as anything to do with M. could be tasteful.
A list of every video shown on the Gold Coast from March 2002 to October 2005 years is available here