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Jonathan Koontz - Subud: The Religion

Standing on our own feet. From Robiyan Easty, March 25, 2009. Time 23:28

Hi Jonathan
This is a well written article containing important points and illustrations. Congratulations.
I don't know if it was a mistake to stop having contributions from others in the Pewartas, but I do remember enjoying the articles by Pak Sudarto almost as much as the advice, jokes and stories he told in his house.
I am one who reveres Bapak. I revere him for connecting us directly to the Power of God, for continually telling us that a teacher always holds something back, but that Bapak gave us everything and we now have to receive it directly. That is what brought me into Subud: the absence of a guru and of any kind of teaching or philosophy.
I remember Bapak testing someone and saying, 'this brother will stand on his own two feet'. I remember that soon after Raphael Hoegh-Krone wrote to Bapak about some experiences he had had, Bapak said in a talk, 'At last someone who can receive like Bapak'. I remember that Bapak had a prayer, 'Let me not come alone to heaven'; I was deeply moved by the very strong sense of loneliness I got when first heard this .
It is certainly possible that some of the things Bapak did gave encouragment to those who wanted to set him up as a guru, but he made it clear in his talks that he did not want this. I am convinced that it is posible to revere Bapak as a wise and loving father or elder brother, without setting him up as the One Source or as a guru. I find sad and dangerous the binary polarising into Bapakists (horrible word) and anti-Bapakist factions that you seem to have experienced and which appears to be gaining ground. One of the glorious things about Subud is the huge variety of characters in our association. It is something to celebrate, perhaps chiefly by meeting the great challenge to respect each other's different views and paths.

From Sahlan Diver, March 26, 2009. Time 20:16


Thanks for the feedback. Jonathan died last year. He was quite elderly. We were very pleased to have got his article with its unique historical perspective ( and incidentally his interesting observations about the founder of Scientology )



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