Author: David Christopher Lane Publisher: Alt.religion.eckankar Publication date: 1996
E-mail David Christopher Lane directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
I want to go back to the home base now.
Mark A Writes: "BS, David. (You are beginning to give me reason to believe that you harbor characteristics of the *weasal*.
Hey, what's a little ad hominum among friends, eh?) You have written a work that *interprets* Paul's character and legitimacy as a spiritual Master. You are hiding behind words trying to obscure your responsibility here." DAVID LANE REPLIES: It is quite funny to read your recent posts, Mark. I think you should re-read what I have stated. I clearly think Twitchell lied and BSed and I have clearly given my interpretation. I have never denied that. I was simply stating the obvious: there are many books on Eckankar and Twitchell. Mine is one of them. I have clearly interpreted Paul and I have given you my reasons. There is no hiding behind words. It is just me being very systematic in replying. Mark A. Writes: "You are *not* merely presenting one piece of a larger jigsaw puzzle. You are painting a portrait. And if you IN ANY WAY expect your work to possess true academic standing, then you would take Feynman's words to heart (words you *conspicuously* avoided referring to) and you would explore, ponder and integrate the other side of the testimony in order to paint that picture." DAVID LANE REPLIES: I happen to find Feynman's words quite apt. That is why footnotes were invented and why bibliographies were devised. That is why in the MAKING i list my sources. That is why I listen to my critics and engage in these endless debates over a 1922 birthdate. Yes, I am painting a portrait. But so has Klemp, so has Gross, so has Steiger. What is great about painting and what is great about books is that there are hundreds of such items. We then can compare. I think what you don't like about my portrait is that it does not concur with what you believe. Well, that's precisely the point. I was focusing on those aspects which would have never come to light in Eckankar (don't forget Gross' denial and don't forget Klemp's latest memos about forgery). I don't respect gurus that lie. Mark Alexander Writes: "The rest of your post is styrofoam. You have been presented with a responsible and critical challenge to the legitimacy of your work and you pretend that it is irrelevant. It is not. You hide behind the false claim that your work's clear purpose is not *your* purpose." DAVID LANE REPLIES: I have never stated that questions about my work are irrelevant. Quite the opposite. That is why I am here. I find this whole discussion quite exciting and quite fun. My work's purpose is obvious by the title: to explore the untold story of Paul Twitchell and Eckankar. And in retelling many of those untold aspects I became convinced that Twitchell bullshitted his audience. I am very clear on that. Hiding behind words? Yea, that's why Eckankar has legally hassled me for some fifteen years. That's why John-Roger robbed my house. The fact remains that you just don't like my portrait of Twitchell. And I was simply telling you that it is one portrait among many. I just happened to have documented my sources, unlike Brad Steiger's narrative which literally made things up and is still being sold and advertised in Eckankar as Paul Twitchell's biography. Mark A writes: You have not explored the testimony. You have instead dismissed it all as irrelevant, as mere *inner* experience and therefore not even worthy of a closer look. You seem to have done nothing to explore the testimony of *physical* contact with these masters (your trips to India notwithstanding...). DAVID LANE replies: What testimony? That a person saw Rebazar in their dreams, in their meditation, in their waking state? Quite the opposite, Mark. I have talked to hundreds of Eckists about their experiences. Indeed, I remember one chap down in San Diego who claimed that the Eck Masters were eating him alive from the inside out. I simply told him that it was all projections of his own mind. He stopped having such bad nightmares. I have written on inner experiences in many places (see my section on it in my website, see my book on Faqir, see my published articles in the Journal of Humanistic and Transpersonal Psychology). I don't doubt that people have many "inner" experiences. What I question is the interpretation of such events. See my section on Faqir Chand if you desire. Now concerning the "physical" evidence of such gurus. I actually spent time both in America and India trying to see if there was such a Sudar Singh, as described by Twitchell. I can't help it if Steiger's book is filled with a time-line that contradicts Twitchell's testimony. I can't help it if Twitchell's family thinks the whole story of his travels to India are B.S. Hey, give me a good lead, bro, and I would be most happy to pursue it. I have come up with zip. What I have discovered is that Twitchell has a proclivity to bull-shit. oops, not polite words, but quite accurate when describing how he has changed his biography. Mark Alexander Writes: "BS, David. If he exists, if he is an ECK Master, he may very well not want to be *found* by you. I doubt you approached the search for him with the stance necessary for him to want to make himself available to you. I know of the testimony of many good people who establish his physical existence. I have not had that experience so I have no true knowledge of him, but I know enough of the nature of testimony (from Aristotle's Rhetoric to the present) to know when a case can be made. You have avoided sincerely trying to make that case." DAVID LANE replies: Very interesting rebuttal, Mark. So one has to be "found" by Rebazar and one must have the "necessary" stance before he shows up. Hmm, with that modus operandi I could simply say that you don't have the "right" stance to read my work, you have not yet been chosen by Lane to understand his truth revealing. It is so silly. The burden of proof is not on me. It is on Twitchell who made the claim. I would be really impressed to meet this 500 year old guy. But if he only shows up to believers, then you have a very very telling answer. It is more likely that the "believer" is constructing Rebazar than the other way around. If Rebazar really exists then let's see some physical proof. I don't mind being wrong. I just happen not to be a chump. Mark Alexander Writes: "BS, again, David. You don't believe there is any possibility that you are wrong, so the above statement is BS." DAVID LANE replies: Are you now an expert on what I believe or don't believe? You see, Mark, if Rebazar did show up in the surf lineup (the red robe, the short beard, the birth certificate), then I would have to ADMIT he existed. What I think you don't like is that I have not seen any proof for the dude. What is so fun about this endeavor and what is so progressive about science is that sometimes one just gets faced..... even if they don't want to. Thus, bring Rebazar over. I shall not mind. I will really tell you I met him. I am not going to apologize for not being a chump. I just happen to believe that we should hold out for some evidence for these trans- personal happenings. More proof won't worsen the case; quite the opposite. Mark Alexander Writes: "I used to believe that you were sincere in these proclamations, but with time it has become clear that you construct a persona to obscure you skeptical certainty. I am not buying it any more. :-/" DAVID LANE REPLIES: Now that's quite good. You are not buying it anymore. You are getting a bit skeptical, you are doubting. I encourage you to do more of that. Keep ripping me. But perhaps you will take that same skepticism and apply it to the Twitchell and Eckankar. We will both be better served. Constructing personas? I think you should do more research into my background. Try reading my 1980s articles. I would dearly love to be wrong. That's what you don't get. The problem is that I won't settle for cheap evidence. Mark Alexander Writes: "Let's face it: You *a priori* dismiss the spiritual as delusion, the extraordinary experiences between people as confusion, the testimony of several individuals regarding a physical manifestation as hysteria." DAVID LANE replies: Sorry Mark to disappoint you on your categorical appraisement of what I believe. But I think you got your "a prioris" wrong. Try reading my book, THE ENCHANTED LAND. I just happen to think that much of what we think is transpersonal or spiritual is merely physical. But your statements about hysteria and the like are not mine. Here's a sampler of things I have written to find out what I think about visions: THE HIERARCHICAL STRUCTURE OF RELIGIOUS VISIONS (journal of transpersonal psychology) THE HIMALAYAN CONNECTION: UFOS AND THE CHANDIAN EFFECT (journal of humanistic psychology) THE UNKNOWING SAGE: the life and work of Baba Faqir Chand and other assorted items. You can then "test" your "apriori" hypothesis to see if you are correct. Mark Alexander Writes: Your response to my post is dishonest, David. You know what your book actually is. My critical point is legitimate. DAVID LANE REPLIES: Yes, I know what my book is: a critical rip of Paul Twitchell's life and work. I am happy with that. Mark Alexander Writes: "You do not have a piece of the jigsaw puzzle; you have a premature stillborn." DAVID LANE REPLIES: I am curious, Mark, do you thing the same of Steiger's work? You see, at the very least, I have touched upon things that were not publicly disclosed by Eckankar. You don't like it, but I have documented every thing I have stated. I have also given you my interpretation after having researched this area for a long time. I think Twitchell lied, plagiarized, and covered-up. I also think he started Eckankar for financial reasons (he himself says so in his early writings). You just don't like my interpretation because you don't believe I have all the facts or I have given all the facts. Well, not to get postmodern on you, but NO book has ever given all the facts. They have, rather, given whatever glimpse they could given the limits of time, space and focus. I would love to give you all the plagiarism examples I have, but it would take volumes. Maybe in the future. Mark Alexander Writes: "It is not an honest portrait. But more of yours is becoming clear. You are unwilling to deal with *that* truth. Yet still I have" DAVID LANE REPLIES: What truth? That Twitchell lied and you somehow condone it? I am quite comfortable with the Twitch, the human. I just happen to think that he BSed about lots of things, including his claim to be the 970 master in the ancient Vairagi lineage. Mark Alexander: "Love in Hu" DAVID LANE replies: I am glad that you still love me. -------------------------- Mark Alexander Writes and cites Lane: "The more I read your responses on this issue, David, the more duplicitous they appear to me. OK, let's stick with your metaphor: *B* I see my work as simply one piece in a larger jigsaw puzzle. Now I realize that you and others may want me to flesh things out, but that's not the focus of my work. *E* So you interpret the entire picture based on one piece of the puzzle? That is dishonest. DAVID LANE REPLIES: Re-read again what I wrote (just above). I didn't say I interpret the entire picture based on one piece of the puzzle; you said that. I stated that my book was merely one part of a larger puzzle. I have read almost every Eckankar book I could get my hands. I have read almost every obscure article by Twitchell and others I could retrieve. I have even read those "secret" discourses that have been sent my way by long-time members who wanted me to know that side of the story. I have an extensive collection of pro-Eckankar materials. So your claim is actually false. No, I try to make judgements on the basis of widing reading. It just happens to be the case that I think that Twitchell lied and I have documented it for thousands to see. Mark Alexander writes: "David, you draw conclusions that defame a man's character and work, and the chosen spiritual path of tens of thousands...and you think it is *honorable to only explore *one piece*?" DAVID LANE WRITES: Better read me more carefully. I never said what you allege: that it is "honorable" to only explore one piece. I said quite the opposite. It is good to do as much research as possible. That is why I read all the postings on this newsgroup. That is why I listed tens of Eckankar books in my bibliography. By the way, in light of free information flow, do you remember what Darwin said about my manuscript and the SCP journal? DESTROY THEM. I guess he didn't want that piece known. Do you know what I say to people who want to know more about Eckankar? Read as much as you can from a variety of sources, including the rips of me. I guess THE LIVING ECK MASTER wants less from you. Mark Alexander writes: That is dishonest. You seem to show no concern for Feynman's injunction. You claim academis standing, you are a professor, and I presume you desire some scientific respectability. And you think you should *ignore* Feynman's point? That is dishonest. David Lane Writes: Ignoring Feynman's point? Hmm, I pride myself on having read any thing that Dick wrote. I have listened to his injunction very carefully. That is why I have footnoted my work, that is why I have given you the leads to my documents (I even made them available worldwide). That is why I have cited and referenced my sources. That is why I have engaged in this newsgroup. Did Twitchell follow Feynman's injunction in the FAR COUNTRY? What you fail to understand about that injunction (by the way, read what Feynman says about OBE's and NDE's) is that footnoting and citations is the method by which one's work can be checked and re-checked. If I didn't believe in his injunction, I wouldn't be on this newsgroup responding straight out to my critics. Feynman and other scientists clearly favor their one pet theory over another. What they do, unlike Twitchell, is give the trail by which others can "test" their claims. You see, Mark, I took ONLY pro-Eckankar documents about the 1922 birthdate. I didn't take anti-Eck material. It just happens that the contradictions in Eckankar arise from Eckankar's literature. Mark Alexander Writes: "You have avoided dealing with the central critical point I am making. Why? Are you dishonest?" DAVID LANE REPLIES: Funny that you should bring up dishonesty in the context of Paul Twitchell, but to answer your point once again: My book is one among many. I think Twitchell lied. You just don't like my interpretation. Mark Alexander writes: "You have had almost *two decades* to go beyond *first steps*. Is there nothing to you beyond your little precious piece of the puzzle? That is dishonest." DAVID LANE WRITES: Well, Mark it is pretty obvious to me that there are more than just first steps. Like admitting when someone lied about his age. Like admitting when someone tried to sue one of his own over plagiarism but didn't have the courage to own up to his (Twitchell vs. J.R.) Yes, I think I was much too naive in the 1970s and 1980s. I think the bullshit factor is a lot higher than I ever suspected. Now growing up means realizing certain painful things, like Santa Claus doesn't exist, like Darwin is no longer a Master in Eckankar (can't even get a membership, huh?), like Rebazar Tarzs is a cover name, like Sudar Singh is fictional and so on. But even though I am quite convinced that much of Twitchell's allegations are B.S., I still have this weird trait: To listen and to respond to critics. I like to keep things open even if it remains only a possibility and not a probability. I don't know about your issue of dishonesty. I think maybe Twitch knows more about it. Mark Alexander Writes: "What an incrediblay inadequate excuse. You are arguing FOR shirking your responsibility in this matter. Sure, if you were simply giving a new perspective for needlepoint or rebuilding a car engine in a new way, you may have a valid point here. But, you *advertise* conclusions that defame, desparage, degrade without exploring or offering contering evidence or interpretations. That is dishonest." DAVID LANE REPLIES: You are quite right that I have strong conclusions on Twitchell. What you forget is that I DOCUMENTED and REFERENCED why I thought so. What excuse, Mark? I didn't come up with an astral library defense for plagiarism. I didn't come up with a typo defense for the 1922 birthdate, I didn't bullshit my followers about my previous associations with spiritual teachers. What did I do that you object so strong to? Researched Eckankar and found that Twitchell lied and I told the public about it. You want me to give "another" side? What you forget is that is what I have done. You can read IN MY SOUL I AM FREE and the many volumes in Eckankar for their "official" (if doctored) history. I even list them in my bibliography and footnote tens of Eckankar books. Has Eckankar put my book in their bibliographies? Has Klemp cited me as a source for his essay on Twitchell? [I was the one who interviewed Twitchell's first wife and found out the information he and others now use.] Has Eckankar listed all the alternative interpretations there are to Twitchell's life? By the way, Mark, it is not "I" who defamed Twitchell. He did it to himself. I have simply used his material back on himself and demonstrated it to the public. It is also not defamation if it is true. Mark Alexander Writes: "Are you like a schlock lawyer who hides behind the defense of "Oh well, justice will come out in the end if we present our own little extreme position and leave it to others to find the larger picture"? That is dishonest." DAVID LANE REPLIES: Try taking that very same criticism of me and applying it to Eckankar or to Paul Twitchell. What you fail to realize over and over again is that I have no problem with others reading anything they wish on Eckankar. You see, Eckankar has a problem with people reading my stuff. Darwin asked for it to be destroyed! I believe in the free-flow of ideas and Eckankar has shown repeatedly it does not (see the Garland episode or the Peebles episode for proof). It is doubly ironic to me that you think i hide behind words when I have been the subject of numerous attacks (including robbery). I will say it again: I think Twitchell was a liar. Does that help? Am I hiding now? I just happen to think that one should have the option of reading as much as possible about a subject (and not suing or "destroying" one's alternative view). I have listed many Eckankar publications in my book. Has Eckankar given you a resource list for all their critics? Geez, Eckankar hasn't even given you an address to get Johnson's book, despite the fact that he is one of their key, if unacknowledged sources. I think you got your lines crossed here, Mark. Mark Alexander Writes: "My God, this is duplicitous. You *do* sound like a lawyer who throws mud and then says, "Well, it is up to the other side to clean it up, IF THEY CAN." That is dishonest. You are not a sleaze lawyer, you are a professor. Act like it. At the very least, be enough of an honest professor to respond to Feynman." DAVID LANE REPLIES: It is amazing to me that being up front can get one such negative feedback. Duplicitous? All you have to do Mark is find me Sudar Singh's address and proof that he existed and I will broadcast it world-wide. I am sorry but I cannot condone plagiarism, cover-up, or lying. If Eckankar or you really wants something changed, then give me some proof! You have given me nothing except that you don't like my posts or don't like my responses. Again, read all the literature you can. I even put Eckankar's homepage on my website. Have they put the Dave Rife's on theirs? Mark Alexander Writes: "These are the more disappointing posts I have read from you. I am beginning to regret having defended you in times past, now that your true duplicity seems to be emerging." DAVID LANE WRITES: Duplicity? Is it duplicity to say read lots of books to get a wider view? Mark, I think you should re-read what I wrote. I was simply stating that my view was one of many. For sure I think Twitchell was a first-rate liar. But all I was saying over and over again was that I understand why people think I have a narrow focus. You call me duplicitous because I say I have a narrow focus. This is so silly, I can't stop smiling. Don't defend me, Mark. Why? Because that's not what I desire. What I want is some documentation that shows Sudar existed. What you fail to really understand is that I don't mind being wrong. I just won't say I am wrong when I am not. Do you REALLY think the 1922 date is a typo? If so, then give me some proof. I am sorry that you are disappointed in my posts. I am not disappointed in yours. They are fun. Mark Alexander Writes: "Love in HU" DAVID LANE REPLIES: Glad you still love me after two posts. ----------------------------
E-mail The Neural Surfer directly at email@example.com
I want to go back to the home base now.