Jyotish Novak and Vidura Smallen to Brahmananda
In light of the fact that we recently met with you, we feel that it is important for us to respond to your letter to Swami Kriyananda. For you to send a letter that is purposely insulting to both Swami Kriyananda and Ananda is belittling to you and offensive to us. It is especially so, given the fact that at our recent meeting we agreed to work toward more mature communication between SRF and Ananda.
For you to demean Swami Kriyananda is to show your own pettiness. Swami Kriyananda has brought tens of thousands of people to God and to Master. By any measure, his life has been a stunning success. It is very likely that no other individual has been so effective in spreading the teachings of our Guru. It is the height of presumption for you to insult a direct disciple who has spent his life faithfully carrying out what Master personally commissioned him to do. The fact that SRF has never been able to recognize his contribution to Master’s work is blindness. And the continued efforts you’ve made to attack him and to block his service to his guru are a spiritual crime.
You talk of knowing Mr. Flynn as “an honorable man, dedicated to God and Guru and this path.” Why don’t you read the transcripts of the Bertolucci case and see how Mr. Flynn portrayed the spiritual path? You will see how the techniques of Master’s path, including meditation and chanting, were portrayed as a way to brainwash people. Discipleship was described as a nefarious method of control and reverence to our gurus as worshipping “dead people.” If you find this kind of insult to Master’s path to be “dedication to God and Guru,” then you have a very strange idea of dedication.
One dictionary definition of evil is “causing or wishing harm to another.” Ananda members experienced exactly that from Mr. Flynn during depositions and the trial. We have been told that others in the legal profession refer to him as “The Assassin,” no doubt based on his willingness to use any means to achieve a victory for his clients. His methods appear to be an example of “the end justifies the means.” This is also true of your portrayal of Master to the Supreme Court as your “employee.” For SRF to use such tactics is both dishonorable and ineffective.
In your letter to Swami Kriyananda you say, “In your heart of hearts you know perfectly well that Master wanted his organization—SRF—to be the one to edit and publish his works.” No, Brahmananda, we do not know this. At the root of the entire dispute between SRF and Ananda is that little phrase “the one.” SRF does not have, nor cannot have, a monopoly on the teachings of this great avatar. The courts won’t allow it. Dwapara Yuga won’t allow it. Neither lawsuits nor threats will prevent others from spreading Master’s teachings.
We do accept your right to publish and edit Master’s works. Ananda has made no attempt to steal SRF’s copyrights, nor do we have any desire to own them. We are simply showing, have already shown, that SRF doesn’t own Master’s writings any more than it owned the term “Self-realization,” or the many other things that you claimed at the start of this lawsuit.
One inexplicable thing about your insistence on continuing the lawsuit is that copyrights aren’t a means of establishing permanent control anyway. Why, we then ask, is SRF willing to spend tens of millions of dollars for such temporary control? The obvious answer is that your lawsuit is a cover-up for your real purpose—to destroy Kriyananda and Ananda. You will not succeed!
In our heart of hearts we do feel that Master’s work is destined to spread through many channels. No person, no organization, no country can be “the one” to monopolize these great teachings. It is time SRF stopped being the bully of the spiritual field. If the results of the actions taken by Cander have not shown you this, you need to open your eyes to a reality other than your own. Threats and lawsuits don’t work. Love and appreciation will.
As we said in our meeting, it is time to begin exploring ways for Ananda and SRF to co-exist with acceptance of the role Master has given each group to play. Truly, Brahmananda, if we can’t offer the world a better model of understanding and harmony than the Israelis and Palestinians, how can we hope to bring Master’s love into a world which so desperately needs it at this time?
Jyotish Novak, Spiritual Director
Vidura Smallen, General Manager