Copyrights & Eckankar

Author: David Christopher Lane
Publisher: Alt.religion.eckankar
Publication date: 1995

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Copyrights, Twitchell and Johnson, and Shariyat-Ki-Sugmad

I know it is a tired issue for many on this newsgroup (sorry Kent), but this last Spring a major study was done on Twitchell's writings, particularly the two published volumes of Shariyat-Ki-Sugmad. This study has over 50 pages of examples illustrating the similarities between Johnson's writings and Twitchell's. Since I didn't do the study myself and have just read it, I have asked for permission to put it on the Net. Hopefully, I will be able to forward the study in the next two weeks. If you ever had any lingering doubts about the extensiveness of Twitchell's plagiarism this study may finally convince you.

On another front, Johnson's book, The Path of the Masters, has retained its copyright since 1939. There are still several copies of the original 1939 edition floating around America; I have seen several myself personally (including Sant Darshan Singh's own personal copy). It has a copyright page.

I am still baffled by how certain people can deny Twitchell's plagiarism when even the Eckankar organization is very clear about what they perceive to be plagiarism of their own materials (witness: Twitchell's threatened lawsuit against John-Roger Hinkins for "copying" his materials without due credit).

Johnson's spiritual status has nothing to do with the issue at hand. The real issue is why we continue to rationalize or legitimize Twitchell's literary transgressions. Remember, Eckankar would sue you (and I mean any Eck chela) for doing only 1/10 of what Twitchell did to Johnson. The knife of logic cuts both ways.

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