Rennie Davis - Spokesman for The Lord of The Universe
The person who brought the most publicity to Guru Maharaj Ji (Prem Rawat) is Rennie Davis, the famous anti-Vietnam war campaigner, one of the Chicago Seven conspiracy trial defendants. He stars in the "Lord of The Universe" and "Mysterious Miracles, Aliens from Spaceship Earth". He tirelessly explained how the political and counter-cultural movements of the 60's were just the fore-runners for Prem Rawat's mission to bring Peace to the World
In 1973 he told the New York Times that he now loved him. "I would cross the planet on my hands and knees to touch his toe." He did not specify which toe. Its nearly certain that Rennie Davis was the main, or one of the main, instigators of the Millenium 73 festival. It smells of him. His fame and expertise lay in organising rallies and public protests. He brought these methods with him but unfortunately a meaningful media event requires a very large number of people committed to the cause or an interesting hook on which the media can hang their stories. Even in late 1973 Divine Light Mission had far fewer people than Rennie expected and publicised and the Perfect Master was a hopeless bore with only one dull message to repeat. Without Davis and Rawat's grandiose megalomanic millenial predictions it would have been a remarkable success for an organisation so new whose followers had been doped up dropouts. Instead, it became a fiasco that stopped DLM's upward trajectory from which it never recovered and Prem Rawat was endelilbly marked as a joke.
Rennie Davis gave an introductory public speech at the event.
"It is not possible to understand the Middle East, or Watergate, or UFOs, or the super comet in the sky unless you understand the central event on this planet around which all other events now spin. Guru Maharaj Ji says: 'Life is like a chess game and very soon now the whole world will be checkmated' and if America wants to know what is happening it must first understand the main thing that is happening, the Lord is on the planet, he's in a human body and he's about to usher in the greatest change in the history of human civilisation."
Rennie, interviewed in a park in 1973, talks about Divine Light Mission:
"The thing we've got here is not only a movement that is incredibly efficient and incredibly together and built really on an incredible self-understanding but you see it's led by the Lord, heh heh heh."
Rennie Davis discusses Bhole Ji in an interview in the park:
"See, it's sort of like all the music of the 60's and the early 70's is being given back to us you know and you would never expect you know like uh I don't know, at first you think that's really far out, that's pretty good music, not bad group particularly considering the fact that it's only five months old and then you come out and realise it's being organised and conducted by the Lord of Music. Wait until people find out who Bhole Ji is!"
In an impromptu satsang in the back of a car Rennie explains the reason the Astrodome was built.
"You know you see this Astrodome and uh the more time we've spent in here the more we realise that it really was built for this event. Have you ever, have you been in the celestial suite or heard about that?" "No, what is it?" "Well the Astroworld here, see that whole uppper part there, on the top, the elevator goes up to the green and all the think, that's called the Celestial suite and that's where the Holy Family will stay and the bedroom where Guru Maharaj Ji will sleep is called the Master Bedroom." "Oh wow!" "There's a little, wooden plaque and it says 'Master Bedroom' and then you walk into the master bedroom and it's just, it's just so incredible you know because first of all there's this magnificent chess set, you know, and Guru Maharaj Ji really loves to play chess, you know, and it's all in place and you walk in into the bedroom and there's this nice uh you know bathroom and everything but the the water fountains, the spigots on the water fountain are in the shape of a swan," "Oh no" "which is Guru Maharaj Ji's symbol, you know and uh this every little details like that its mind blowing just really really beautiful … down the last letter."
Part of an interview he gave in a radio interview with Totonto radio station CFTR was published in the Canadian Divine Times of 26 October 1974.
The most newsworthy aspect of Prem Rawat's mission was the membership and outspoken foolishness of Rennie Davis.
Articles in Magazines & Excerpts from Books:
- Blissing Out in Houston New York Review of Books December 13, 1973
- Blackjack Love New York Review of Books December 13, 1973
- All magazine articles about Guru Maharaj Ji in 1973 discussed Rennie Davis' involvement
- All magazine articles about Guru Maharaj Ji in 1974 discussed Rennie Davis' involvement
- All magazine articles about Guru Maharaj Ji in 1975 discussed Rennie Davis' involvement
- The Spiritual Supermarket - Robert Greenfield
- Meditate, not Agitate INDEPENDENT (AM) PRESS-TELEGRAM (PM) Long Beach, Calif., Sun., April 24, 1973
- Rennie Davis, Antiwar Activist The New York Times, May 6, 1973 - Rennie was quite straightforward: "I would cross the planet on my hands and knees to touch his toe"
- Zippies cool to Rennie after trip to India May 13, 1973 Sunday Post-Crescent, Appletown-Neenah-Menoshah. Wis.
- MAHARAJ JI DEVOTEE: Rennie Davis Finds New Cause - a Guru Los Angeles Times; May 19, 1973 He has become a devotee of Guru Maharaj Ji, the 15-year-old Indian spiritual figure whose presence on earth, Davis says with disarming lack of equivocation, is "the most important event in the history of the world." Elaborating in a long conversation with me earlier this week, he said, "Jesus is back, but this time he's brought his father, and it's revelations time."
- Looks Like a Good Idea THE DAILY TIMES-NEWS Monday Afternoon, May 28, 1973
- People Daily Review Hayward, Calif., Monday July 30, 1973. Rennie predicted that 1973 was the year that the USA will recognise Prem Rawat as the living perfect master, the answer to all the world's ills.
Well, at least they recognized Rennie for what he is …
Lord of the Universe, is a TVTV television documentary filmed at a time when Prem Rawat and his followers had full confidence that any examination of the guru, his 'Knowledge' and his followers would be positive. In November, 1973 the Divine Light Mission held a festival, Millenium 73, "the most significant event in human history" according to Guru Maharaj Ji as Prem Rawat was then known to the world. The documentary makers were allowed full access to the event held at the Houston Astrodome and to the followers, especially to Rennie Davis who was then the major spokesman for the movement. It contains footage of Guru Maharaj Ji, events from the Millenium festival, premies involved in 'Soul Rush' a pre-festival publicity campaign, interviews with premies and Prem Rawat's oldest brother, Bal Bhagwan Ji and his mother, Mata Ji. It is still available at Amazon and is a must for anyone with an interest in 1970's Divine Light Mission.
During this early period of confidence in Divine Light Mission before the Millenium '73 fiasco, before Prem Rawat's marriage to a devotee of his who was nearly 10 years older and 4 inches taller than him and before his disinheritance and disowning by his mother, footage from Divine Light Mission movies and interviews with Rennie Davis were given to film-maker Don Como for a documentary on gurus and 'New Religious Movements' that were proselytising in the USA.