Sunday, December 18, 2022


One of the most telling tracks recorded of Jim Baker's cacophonous singing (mostly yelling and wailing) was a track titled A Kind of Depression.  Because Jim Baker could only draw on his own feelings, emotions and past life experiences; the words he spoke, yelled and wailed throughout this track were very telling.  Here are Jim Baker's painful and remorseful words on that track:

This love of mine goes on and on.
Life's been so empty since you have gone.  
You're always on my mind though out of sight.  
It's lonely through the day and all the night. 
I've cried my heart out it's goin to break. 
What does it matter let it break.  
I walk---I walk alone til I walk with you what else can I do. 
I'll talk---I'll talk to none without you what else can I do.  
Tears of pain and tears of remorse.  
Oh, baby come back put me on course. 
I've a very strange feeling I ain't felt before.  
It's tearing my heart out. I ain't me anymore. 
It's grinding it's an upside shot. 
Give me some compassion.  
Now my heart it's acting strangely it felt rather sore.  At least it gave me that impression.  
Without you I don't want no more. 
Yeah, I fell in love with some girl.  She put my heart in a whirl now badly by some girl. Got me in a knot don't know what's what.
So, I'm in a kind of depression.

I reached out to Chris Johnson aka Octavius for his input/feedback about this track and specifically about Jim Baker's tortured lyrics and singing.  Here is what he wrote back.

Definitely about a woman before Robin. Seems to be an opposite message from the norm.  I will share what I noticed even then while mastering the selections I dissected from the chaos that now are hailed as the genius of Jim Baker the musician artist.  He had no natural talent other than being willing to throw himself off the cliff into the unknown and BS his way in real time.  He was good at that.  Example:  becoming a judo instructor from a book.  Health club gym owner when there were none. Sandalmaker when there were none.  Health food restaurant when there were none.  White male western guru figuring out what he believed on the fly.  Frontman for a spontaneous band.  Could not play an instrument so he got the biggest drum to beat.  Could not keep time.  Singer of whatever came to mind.  Was NOT a singer.  But, he could whistle better than most....I guess?  So, to your question: (I asked Chris about the tortured, wailing yelling words on the track) He could only draw from the experiences he had.  Like we all do.  His melodies, whistling, and constructs were all bits and pieces of music from the 40's.  I would think to myself, "Where have I heard that before?" Lil kitties, gonna take you home, the whistling, and some of his lyrics were all drawn from things in his past.  Shipmates stand together???  So, my best guess is he was singing about his girlfriend (forgot her name) who helped him build The Source.  Just his expression and body language testifies to his happiness.  Before Robin.  I don't know if he was a happy soul.  He once said something to the effect of, "What a mess I've created."  Yup, he did.  I think he was probably happier before the 'family'.  He actually was a young soul trying to figure out what had more value: The Material or Spiritual.  So, he was a prisoner to his own habit pattern.  Becoming bored with where he found himself and abandoning it in the end.  Restaurants, marriages, children, lifestyles, friends, beliefs, and life in general.  This is why he did what he did.  Pushing and testing limits and norms.  This is the same burden our generation suffers.  Single parent homes.  No examples.  Guess this is why he needed to be the 'Father' he never had.  This is why we all do the things we do.  My opinion for what it's worth.  With every myth comes the point where 'the rubber meets the road'.  Outside of all the machismo, he could have been a friend.  But, it still remains the biggest lesson in post graduate Sociology one could not imagine.  The masculine Father image for better and for worse.  And I am grateful to the universe for it. His ego had never felt so much pump.  He fell for the temporary, lost sight of the eternal.  It happens.

Thanks to the input from former members like Chris and the others whose voices I've included on this blog, it helps give the viewing public a more honest and authentic view of Jim Baker, as opposed to the embellished and exaggerated (and often erroneous) narrative that's continually being put forth.  There are a few former members who are not afraid to share their memories and experiences of Jim Baker that portray the man as being flawed and human.

Monday, June 13, 2022

Lovely To Look At But Not Heard

Jim Baker continually spoke about Jesus and even sang "you are Jesus, are you ready for that" on a Ya Ho Wha 13 track.  His daily morning meditations or class would often contain references to biblical parables, and his favorite film was The Ten Commandments.  There was a distinct Christian theme or reference to almost every aspect of Jim Baker's so-called 'teachings', and yet when Lovely Previn was interviewed for the 2012 film about The Source Family; her interview was cut and not used, because she talked about her strong Christian faith.  

Per Lovely, she spoke about how much she enjoyed joining The Source Family and finding a family, and a father-figure in Jim Baker---two things that had been lacking in her own life.  Lovely also talked about how the things that Jim Baker was teaching weren't getting her to the place that she knew she was going; which was the life of a devout Christian.  I saw firsthand how Lovely was shunned and ridiculed by some former Source Family members, because of her strong Christian views which they felt did not align with whatever they believed Jim Baker's 'aquarian teachings" to be.  What hypocrites!

I only just recently learned from Lovely that she had been interviewed for the film, and how when she found out that her interview wasn't included in the film; she instinctively knew why.  Jim Trattner aka Magus had been interviewed extensively and his interview segments were used in the film, and yet he left The Source Family early at the Mother House.  Whereas, Lovely had been in The Source Family much longer and had felt very close to Jim Baker because he supported her music and inspired her to improvise musically.  Lovely was a very accomplished violinist and vocalist who played and sang on many of the albums released.  Also, she was present on the day that Jim Baker died recording everything he said after he crash-landed on the beach.  I would have thought that Lovely would have been the perfect former member to interview!  But, it was only because Lovely expressed her strong Christian views and values that her interview segment was not used in the film, because whomever was controlling the direction of the film didn't like what Lovely had to say.

Here is what Lovely had to say in her own words:

I got a message from Isis asking if I’d like to do an interview for the upcoming Source family documentary. I arranged a time for Jodi and her two-man crew to come over to my house. They rearranged my dining room area as the best place to film and made it look nice, then Jodi began the interview. I don’t remember the questioning exactly but asking me about my time in the Source family and what I thought of it now is probably a general guideline. 
I can say at that time in my life as a young teenager probably age 15 I felt a very strong need for a family.  I experienced my classmates’ homes and spent many happy overnight stays with their families.  I came from a divorced family; my parents were already divorced when my mother was three months pregnant with me, so there was the lack of father and lack of warm togetherness living with my mother and my older sister. 
The Source offered me a big family, father-type figure and spiritual teachings I longed for as I searched for God. I was taken away after the first year to go and finish high school in the countryside of England. I had no choice because I was not 18 yet. Once I had graduated I came home to Los Angeles to get a job a car and be normal but soon felt the pull of family and went back. Many were in Hawaii and the restaurant was being sold so I helped the manager train the new owners and workers and was eventually able to join everyone over in the islands. 
Fast forward to Jim Baker taking the hang-gliding adventure that eventually caused him to pass away. I felt very close to him because he was an older man well educated, a great businessman, knowledgeable about so many things and I too had my good British education. He also encouraged me with my music which my parents never did; he told me to go out on the deck in Lanikai and just play my violin however my heart led me to play which is how I began improvising. That was very crucial for me to have that support. The day of the hang gliding I was the one carrying the tape recorder recording everything he said from when he took off on the cliff down on the beach, as we drove him home and during those eight hours until he passed away I was right next to him recording every word. Then when we laid him out in his bed there was a 24-hour vigil so I played my violin next to his bed in the wee hours of the morning.

This is probably the story I told the day I was interviewed for the documentary which brings me to my faith and belief system I spoke about in the next portion of the interview.
After believing in the teachings I learned from the family for 25 years I felt spiritually bankrupt. I wasn’t sure with the methods I’d been given whether I would reach liberation or whatever was the goal where my soul and spirit would end up. I spoke about being in a band that was a Christian band and travelling around every weekend sometimes to 2 or three different churches, praying with everyone before we went out and presented special music to the congregation. I was able to ask lots of questions about some of these lesser gods and teachings I’d been believing. Finally I said to the band leader look, I know that I am a Christian, but what have you done to become a Christian you’ve done something what is it?  The leader wouldn’t really answer me and then one day we performed the special music at a Calvary Chapel church.  After over a year none of the churches had ever given an “altar call” asking if anyone wanted to receive Christ, but this Pastor did and I had the realization that to become a Christian I needed to raise my hand publicly and declare my love and desire to follow Christ for what he did for me. Everyone in the church was crying and rejoicing and I ended up playing in that worship team for five years. I read the Bible 9 times and grew in grace and understanding of what I had now become. I even took most of the books that I had followed all those years before and threw them away because I did not need them anymore.

Jim Baker had us all use Bibles and marked certain red letter words that Jesus spoke. I learned that my interview was not going to be used in the Source documentary. My guess is it happened because I didn’t support the old teachings and source ways. 
When I eventually saw the documentary I was so overjoyed to hear something Jim said that I never knew he said, which was that he had given all that he could to all of us, there was nothing left he could give and now he was placing his whole life into the hands of God and that he was surrendering everything. That gave me a lot of hope that I will see him again someday. I believe in his heart he was trying to help a lot of very lost people and he eventually went into wrong directions and led some people astray but I believe that he meant well and that statement is a form of repentance remorse and feeling sorry for what he did. 

The censure and exclusion of former Source Family members is the kind of thing that I cannot stand about the continuing promotion of Father Yod and The Source Family by one person who has tried to control the entire narrative, and how if something or someone doesn't conform to some fabricated 'Source Family values' then they are dismissed and excluded in the same way that Lovely was dismissed and excluded in having her story told and her voice heard in the 2012 film.

Jim Baker is heard saying the following in the 2012 film, "I am completely dependent upon the God of all to take care of me" and one of the very last things he said after he crash-landed on the beach was, "I thought that I was going to fly the kite.  I guess it was God's last lesson he had to teach me."  Jim Baker was a deep believer in God, and yet there are former Source Family members who mock Lovely for having the same deep belief in God.  

Saturday, November 27, 2021

Life Comes First

One of the most detrimental beliefs of Jim Baker's so-called ''teachings' was the one where he spoke against anyone in his Source Family seeking or using medical help, especially against anyone undergoing a blood transfusion.  Jim Baker adopted a belief that blood platelets contained a person's memories or what he called 'the river of life' that would supposedly playback at the moment of death, in order for that person to learn from their mistakes made in life, before being reincarnated into another body.  That was the belief that Jim Baker adopted taken from something he had read, and became a fundamental part of Baker's 'aquarian teachings'---that his followers abstain from seeking or using medical help and modern medicine, but most importantly at all cost to not allow a person's blood to be removed from their body upon death, but allow the body to remain undisturbed for three days to allow that person to view their 'river of life' and learn their life lessons, before being reincarnated.  It was that belief system adopted by Jim Baker which prevented infants from receiving medical treatment, and why Baker was persuaded from having medical treatment himself, after crash landing on a beach and being reminded of his own 'teaching'.

I recently learned about the rabbinic principle pikuach nefesh in an article that challenged the belief of Jehovah's Witnesses against blood transfusions.  It is essentially the argument that Jesus was to have used with the pharaohs that the preservation of life clearly has to come first, before all other considerations.  A principle that seemed to have been lost on Jim Baker.  Here is a definition of that principle:  It basically says that 'life comes first' and everything should be done to preserve life, beyond any religious belief of any kind.  Who knows, perhaps Jim Baker never knew or read about the principle of pikuach nefesh, because it was certainly not applied after Jim Baker crash-landed on the beach and asked the women around him, if he should go to the hospital.  That principle was also not in play when infants born in The Source Family at The Father House did not receive any medical help and subsequently died, because seeking or using medical help would have been going against one of the fundamental 'teachings' or beliefs put into place by our 'spiritual' leader, teacher and ersatz father figure, Jim Baker.  So, two infants and Jim Baker himself died being held to the flawed 'teachings' put into place within The Source Family, by the man.  Historically, you don't have to look back very far to see how many people have died following and obeying the harmful beliefs of zealous religious and cult leaders, which is what happened in The Source Family.

Jim Baker incorporated The Essene Teachings of Jesus Christ into his 'aquarian teachings', and consistently would preach/talk about and even sang, "You are Jesus, are you ready for that'; he even composed his own 'ten commandments for the aquarian age' to resemble Mose's Ten Commandments.  A large portion of Jim Baker's 'teachings' either resembled or were founded on the teachings of Jesus Christ, and he ardently embraced the Jewish term for god---Yod Hey Vav Hey, and yet nowhere in any of it did Jim Baker ever utter the principle of pikuach nefesh; otherwise a couple of infants might have lived and grown up to have happy, fulfilling lives, and even Jim Baker would most likely have survived his injuries and lived to see his own children grow up.  Life should come first, before any so-called spiritual or religious beliefs.

After reading about the Jehovah's Witness parents who allowed their 11-year-old son to die, rather than allowing him to receive a blood transfusion; it reminded me of the same, misguided and deleterious beliefs that Jim Baker had adopted about not having a blood transfusion, based on a belief that a person's blood platelets contained their entire life story to be viewed at the moment of death.  Jim Baker would simply attach the word 'aquarian' and incorporated stuff he'd read to be part of his so-called 'teachings', and who, upon crashing-landing on the beach and sustaining life-threatening injuries was surrounded by his fervent, loyal followers who reminded him of his own 'teaching' not to seek medical help, and who made sure his body was allowed to remain undisturbed for three days, in order for Jim Baker to view his own 'river of life'.  Then, blinded by her own religious, zealous beliefs; one of the more aggressive, controlling women surrounding Jim Baker would not allow Jim Baker's adult son to speak to his father for one last time, while Jim Baker lay dying and his adult son called the Glass House in Lanikai wanting to speak to his Dad for one last time, but was told, "No, you're Father doesn't want to speak to you,"----something which I find to have been a cruel thing for someone to do!  How could anyone deny a son the chance to speak to his own dying father for one last time, because of the fear that real family member might emotionally influence their parent and convince them to seek medical help----it's the kind of extremism that being in a spiritual or religious cult like The Source Family created and fomented.  When the 2012 film about The Source Family came out; there was an effort to attach the catchphrase "Just Be Kind' to Jim Baker.  What a mockery the catchphrase "Just Be Kind" is when babies were denied medical treatment of any kind and allowed to suffer and die.

It is often a tragic outcome for people who adhere to extreme religious or spiritual beliefs which deny life-saving procedures and treatments; especially when parents impose their extreme religious beliefs on to infants and children who lack the experience and understanding to make that kind of choice---the same way that Jim Baker imposed his beliefs and directives on helpless infants and little children; especially two infants at The Father House in Los Angeles who should have received medical treatment and been given a chance to grow up.  Misguided, religious zealots who impose their harmful and detrimental beliefs on to helpless and innocent children is the most tragic outcome of many cults, and is what happened in The Source Family.

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Cinderella Sings

In this post, I want to give credit to a woman who was all but overlooked for having sung on many of the songs recorded, during the flurry of recording at The Father House in Los Angeles, and who could belt out a song with so much force and power with the most distinctive voice of all the other female singers.  Yet, she wasn't given any credit.  It's Cinderella's distinctive singing voice heard on How Long In Time and she sings the lead vocals on songs like Do Me and Sea Like Me.  Because the music that was made was marketed and sold as being The Source Family music; it made it that much easier for people to enter into licensing and distribution deals with record labels without having any kind of signed agreements in place with the individuals who actually wrote or performed on the songs.  That was the case with the box set that included every single album that was made and produced at The Father House when two former members of The Source Family negotiated a record deal with a Japanese record label without any agreements or even approval in place by any of the songwriters or musicians, and so those two individuals were paid thousands of dollars for that box set!  Ostensibly, the creation of The Source Foundation by two other former members was to supposedly protect the rights of the individual songwriters and musicians, but in reality ended up being just two people who also felt a sense of entitlement to take and use the music made at The Father House however they wanted and who entered into record deals.  So, because Stacie Altman, otherwise called Cinderella and later renamed Quintessence refused to sign any kind of agreement or release for any of the songs that featured her; she has never received any kind of recompense, and there were others.  The songs that I've included in this post were from an album released by Drag City titled Children of The Sixth Root Race specifically How Long In Time, Do Me and Sea Like Me on which you can hear Stacie's distinctive voice. Also unbelievably; the guy who put the album together neglected to include a photo of Stacie among the photos of those who performed on the album!  Below is the Source Foundation agreement that Stacie was advised by her lawyer not to sign.

Stacie, had she signed would have signed away all of her music rights for perpetuity ie forever to the two former members who had set up their own foundation, and so any of the musicians and singer/songwriters who didn't sign one of those foundation agreements were not compensated from any album sales which are still going on today.  As I've stated before in other posts; it was a friendly form of piracy by two people who simply took every recorded song from the early days of The Source Family recorded in the studio garage at The Father House and entered into marketing and distribution deals with record labels whether or not any of the singers/songwriters or musicians signed anything! 

But, enough about how the songwriters, singers and musicians who happened to be in The Source Family have been ripped off, because more than anything I wanted to finally give some recognition and credit to the woman called Cinderella, who sang her heart out with an intensity and vocal projection that few have and could easily sing with a rock band without even using a microphone.

Everyone who joined The Source Family had their own story to tell, but Stacie Altman had a particularly unique and interesting one.  Being the daughter of Hollywood actor and tv personality, Dick York thrust a very young girl into a wild and fast life like many kids of Hollywood actors.  Being young, beautiful and blond also made it that much easier for a young woman living in the Hollywood Hills to be thrust into a lifestyle that few other young people experienced in their early teens.  Stacie ended up joining The Brotherhood of The Source, after the handsome young man she had fallen in love with decided to join, and so in 1972 wanting to be with him; Stacie followed her future husband into The Brotherhood of The Source.  So, when female singers; primarily female backup singers were needed; Stacie's singing voice stood out more than any others, like on the song How Long In Time heard here.

But, because of the male dominated environment created by Jim Baker within his group/cult; the guy who wrote the songs that Stacie sang on wanted full credit and so her performances were merely seen as being supportive of the the main performers----the men in the group.  Things weren't much different in the supposedly new age/aquarian tribe of Jim Baker's than from how things were in the real world of recording where female backup singers were often overlooked.  But, even equally disheartening was when two music indie people involved with the production of Hair came to The Father House to hear the band dubbed The Spirit of '76 and were very interested in working with the band, and they were especially interested in Stacie, after hearing her sing.  But, Jim Baker told the two men that unless they proclaimed him to be their Earthly Spiritual Father; that he would not agree to anything.  The two men's response was no, and so Stacie along with the other band members missed out on what might have been a lucrative recording contract.  The same thing happened later to the band Breath, when Jim Baker refused a recording contract with A&M Records, because they were not willing to make it a Source Family contract giving him complete control over the money.

Here was Stacie singing a song titled Sea Like Me.

Here Stacie is belting out a song titled Do Me (although album credit was incorrectly given to Robin Baker).

Here is Stacie knocking it out of the ballpark with her powerful vocals on Lost Dead But Hoping.

Stacie was the dominate female voice heard on the song Godmen, although the woman hitting the high notes at the end were made by Michelle Scovern aka Aquariana.

Below is a photo of Stacie nursing her infant son, while singing alongside Les Adam aka Rhythm at the piano.  Reminds me of how Cyd Charisse was credited with not only able to dance as well as Fred Astaire, but backwards and in high heels.  Cinderella was able to nurse her infant son and take care of him, all while still singing in the band.

Photo below of Stacie named Cinderella by Jim Baker, a name which I find to be very fitting for the woman!  I wanted to add this Wikipedia definition of the name Cinderella: The word Cinderella has, by analogy, come to mean one whose attributes were unrecognized: one who unexpectedly achieves recognition or success after a period of obscurity and neglect.  

In 1991 Demi Moore posed nude and pregnant on the cover of Vanity Fair; and here was Stacie posing nude and pregnant back in 1973 outside the teepee located at The Father House; a brave trendsetter in her own right. 

Photo below of Stacie in Paia, Hawaii 1974 holding her infant son with his father, Alex seen behind.

Photo below taken on Maui 1975

Early family photos of Stacie seen looking sleepy to the left of her Mom in the one below.

Stacie ended up marrying the film director Robert Altman's oldest son, Michael perhaps because they both had famous parents and had experienced growing up in the Hollywood Hills, and so having that shared experience; they fell in love and were married for over twenty years having two extremely talented children together.
Anyway, I just wanted to acknowledge the musical contributions made by Stacie aka Cinderella aka Quintessence while she was in The Source Family and also give her some personal recognition.

Friday, July 9, 2021

An Uncomfortable Truth


The photo above was one that was to be part of what was to comprise Jim Baker's 'Aquarian Tarot' card deck for The Lovers card.  It was taken at The Father House in Los Angeles, during the flurry of Yahowha 13 recording sessions. 

The photo above of a naked Makushla lying prone, while Jim Baker holds a chalice to her mouth was to signify them having performed the sexual ritual called qudosh that Baker initiated into the daily practice of The Source Family and became THE most predominate of his supposed 'new age' teachings.  Qudosh was something that Baker adopted, after reading books by Aleister Crowley and The Golden Dawn.  The practice of qudosh has been the most secretive aspect of The Source Family that the majority of former members have tried to keep hidden from public view and is also the main reason that many former members have disassociated themselves from having been in The Source Family.  It's my belief, that Jim Baker became consumed by sex and his acquisition of multiple 'spiritual wives', primarily to outdo Yogi Bhajan to show how 'aquarian' Baker was for openly having sex with multiple women, as opposed to the clandestine sexual relationships that Bhajan had with women in his group.

Makushla/Susan, if you happen to see or read this post; I apologize for causing you any more embarrassment, but these two photos are already found online, and so I feel that some kind of explanation should be given so the viewing public can understand how Jim Baker abused his position of power as the spiritual leader and father figure of The Source Family, by expecting everyone especially the women to perform a sexual ritual that honestly few wanted to perform!  But, so-called spiritual leaders, gurus and new age teachers constantly and consistently abused their positions of power and often subjected their loyal and devoted followers to awful practices, including having sex with the spiritual leader, guru or new age teacher.  Jim Baker subjected all of the women (and men) to engage in a sexual ritual which nobody signed up for initially, but we had already become good, little obedient followers of Jim Baker and so most everyone acquiesced and did what he told us to do.  That is the uncomfortable truth of it all.

In a desperate desire by those still promoting Father Yod and The Source Family, a couple of people wanted to publish a Source Family 'Aquarian' Tarot Card deck to hopefully make additional money for themselves, along with all of the other Source Family merch they have for sale.  This was all to take place in 2012, until a mortified Makushla (Susan) set off an email campaign where former members were asked to show their support for her to block the publication of the naked photos of her posing with Jim Baker.  After all, Susan aka Makushla had moved on with her life and was in a new relationship and saw the publication of those naked photos of herself from forty years ago an embarrassing, awful prospect.  I was one of those former members who wrote an email expressing support for Makushla to prevail upon those who were intent on publishing photos of her---basically just pleading with them not to print/publish those embarrassing naked photos of Makushla to be sold in a deck of tarot cards.  The two people most hell-bent on keeping the mythos of Jim Baker alive finally agreed not to publish the naked photos of Susan and Jim Baker, at least until she had passed away; in another display of a humongous sense of entitlement by two former members who have essentially taken and used whatever they have wanted from the Source Family days.  Susan was given a deference that no other former Source Family member has been given, because she was seen as being Father Yod's 'Mother Angel' to be treated in an honorific and reverential way, in contrast to Robin Baker:  Jim Baker's only legal wife who chose to remain with Baker in The Source Family and witnessed and experienced her husband shift his focus and attention to Susan, along with Baker's ongoing and continual sexual acts with the majority of other women within the group in what to me seemed to be his obsessive desire or need to engage in sex with as many of the women in The Source Family, as he possibly could.  

Around the same time that Baker summoned me to have sex with him at The Father House, I also recall a beautiful, young blond woman joining and Jim Baker couldn't help himself and of course initiated having sex with the young woman; when word quickly spread that during the sexual conquest of the young woman; Baker 'lost his seed' ie ejaculated; even though his designated practice called 'dhyanism' was specifically about a man not ejaculating.  Clearly, Jim Baker's lust for the young woman got the better of him that day.  No relationship was respected or sacrosanct to Jim Baker, if his desire was to have sex with another man's wife or partner and it was all presented as being very 'aquarian' and how women were supposedly just naturally attracted to him, because he was 'the most powerful' of men (Jim Baker was much older than most of us who joined and he had a big stomach and flaccid arms and was certainly not as virile and physically fit as most of the younger men in the group and I never found him physically attractive), and how he was supposedly elevating the act of sex beyond the carnal, lustful act of sex outside the confines of The Source Family.  Yet, another uncomfortable truth is that Jim Baker was 'a dirty old man on a lust trip', as described by Robin Baker in the 2012 film about The Source Family. 

The above photos also reflect the male dominated environment of The Source Family where Makushla is seen posed vulnerable and naked upside down in a compromised, sexual position with Jim Baker seen as being the masculine dominant male above her.  Jim Baker was born in 1922 at a time when women had barely won the right to vote in a very male dominated society, and so he grew up seeing women as being subservient and compliant to men more than anything else; the weaker sex who could not withstand the vicissitudes of life which was the reason/excuse he used for keeping the women in The Source Family sequestered away and protected from having to deal with the big, bad outside world.  I recall Jim Baker saying that women were not emotionally equipped to deal with 'the outside world' and therefore should be protected within the confines of the group.  Which was why a woman's role in The Source Family was all about bearing and raising children, cleaning, making meals, doing laundry and attending to the 'earth trip' of their designated "God man" which was how Jim Baker described his 'sons' or the men surrounding him.  So, a woman's role within The Source Family was created by Jim Baker according to how he saw a woman's role in life, which was subservient, obedient and compliant to a man.  I distinctly recall Jim Baker saying that women didn't even need to meditate or attain 'spiritual enlightenment', because their path was different and that it was a man's role to 'contemplate spirit' and attain a higher consciousness or God-consciousness.  That was the belief system which Jim Baker put into place within the supposedly new age 'aquarian tribe' of people whom he surrounded himself.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

A Personal Story

The photo below of a green basket topped with an I Ching coin and tasseled jade piece is significant to me, because it was the first 'nice' thing or possession that Tim bought for me, after we had been temporarily kicked out of The Source Family (that happened to several people) and told to leave the encampment on Maui in 1974.  Getting this basket was a luxury item for me at what was a lot of money for us back then $55.00, after having spent six long years in The Source Family with virtually nothing, but the few items of clothing that I had and a couple of books.  Otherwise, I had nothing and never got anything new.  But, I joined The Brotherhood of The Source with nothing, and I left with nothing.  There were no niceties or luxury items available to the majority of Source Family members like myself, who did not have access to money, transportation or the benefits or largesse of Jim Baker that he bestowed upon some of his 'women' and 'sons'----some of whom were able to buy nice dresses and whatever else they desired.  That was part of the disparity of being in a cult like The Source Family.  Nobody had much of anything, except for whatever handouts were allowed or allotted, because; nobody had any money or income.  Although, it turned out there were some people who continued to maintain their own bank accounts.  But, the majority of people just got by with what little they had which only got worse as the years dragged on.  So, I was very happy when Tim and I were temporarily kicked out and got to return to some kind of normalcy in life where you could spend time looking around art galleries and perhaps buying yourself something nice---a luxury that only a chosen few were allowed to do throughout the entire duration of The Source Family.  So, every time that I look at this basket; it reminds me of how important it was to Tim, for me to have something that I never would have been allowed to have while in The Source Family having neither the funds/money or means to acquire it.  I remember feeling such a sense of freedom being away from the claustrophobic and controlling dictates of Jim Baker and the controlling men and women who surrounded him.

It was during this time that I was almost ready to give birth.  Tim had flown over from Los Angeles to the encampment at Makawao, Maui to check on me, and thankfully either said or did something that pissed off whomever was trying to control the contingent of 'family members', and so Tim and I left the encampment and flew to Oahu where Tim went out and found work playing in clubs and bars.  We were living at The Pagoda Hotel in downtown Honolulu in a room with a kitchenette.  It was in that hotel room that I gave birth to our son.  We had hoped to have found a house or a rental of some kind, before I gave birth, but that did not happen.  Tim delivered our son in a hotel room at The Pagoda Hotel, and like retelling an old war story; he would retell the story of how he delivered our son to everyone around him for the rest of his life, because he was extremely proud of himself.

Looking back, I am convinced that had I gone into labor while still at the encampment at Makawao, or back at the compound in Los Angeles surrounded by Source Family members; that my son would not have survived his breech birth.  My son came out feet first, and had I been surrounded by the men and women in The Source Family at the time; they would have been unable to decide or know what to do, along with the reluctance and reticence never to go against our leader, Jim Baker's tenet not to call an ambulance or seek medical help.  That was verboten, and nobody dared do something that would have been contrary to Baker's directives.  I am convinced that anyone in attendance of my son's breach birth would have stood around and hemmed and hawed unsure of what to do, and my son and I would have been at the mercy of whomever happened to be around, but most definitely that my son would not have survived his birth.  The only reason that my son survived was because Tim and I had left the group and were on our own; that and my own instinctive fear at the moment my son's two feet emerged that if Tim didn't get our baby out immediately neither our baby or myself would have survived---that was the thought that flashed into my mind, right before I literally yelled at Tim, "Pull him out!"  Tim later said that he was pulling so hard; he thought he was going to break our son's neck.  But, it took two strong pulls and out came our son, feet first.  I like to say that he came out standing.

Of course, someone at the hotel heard my birth pains & yelling and had called the Health Department, so the front desk phoned the room to say that an inspector from the Health Department was on their way.  Well, I was freaked out at the prospect of people from the Hawaii Health Department showing up, and so with a surge of adrenaline within minutes Tim had pulled the car that we had around to an exit at the back of the hotel and he unceremoniously gathered up all of the bedding that included the placenta and dumped it down the trash chute, before we left The Pagoda Hotel and went across the street and checked into another hotel where I spent the next week or so recovering and taking care of my perfect, little infant son. 

Thankfully my son survived his birth and his Dad was given the unique opportunity to deliver his own child.  I could not have been more proud of Tim's courage and unwavering resolve in delivering our son, and most of all for listening to me when I yelled at him to 'pull him out!"  But, had I been surrounded by Source Family members whose ability to think and act were inhibited by the delusional and misguided beliefs implemented by our 'spiritual' leader never to call for medical help of any kind; I'm convinced there is no way that my son would have survived.  Another woman had a breach birth, but her baby did not survive, because nobody around her knew what to do, and there was no medical help summoned for her.  But, like her and myself, and all of the other women who became pregnant while in The Source Family; none of us ever had any prenatal care that would have seen if our babies were going to be breech.  I guess that I was the lucky one.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Confirmation By Us

When I began to openly speak out to challenge and oppose the often effusively idealized, and sanitized narrative about Jim Baker and what it was like being in The Source Family; a few of the diehard believers or followers of Father Yod/Yahowha began to search online for anything that might reinforce or bolster their claims that everything that went on in The Source Family was magical, wondrous and divine where Jim Baker is portrayed as being an 'enlightened avatar' for the new age in a feverish effort to convince the public that all of the 'aquarian teachings' espoused by the man had been divinely inspired or channeled through him and were knowledge or wisdom that superseded the 'teachings' of all other gurus or spiritual teachers in a stellar confirmation bias or wishful thinking.

"Confirmation bias occurs from the direct influence of desire on beliefs. When people would like a certain idea/concept to be true, they end up believing it to be true. They are motivated by wishful thinking. This error leads the individual to stop gathering information when the evidence gathered so far confirms the views (prejudices) one would like to be true.
Once we have formed a view, we embrace information that confirms that view while ignoring, or rejecting, information that casts doubt on it. Confirmation bias suggests that we don’t perceive circumstances objectively. We pick out those bits of data that make us feel good because they confirm our prejudices."
Whenever a former member of The Source Family has openly spoken out against Jim Baker or the practices that he imposed on his entire group of followers; they are immediately pounced upon and attacked/discredited by the more rabid and devoted followers of Father Yod/Yahowha, due to the depths of some follower's confirmation bias about the man, Jim Baker and the 'new age' utopian fairytale image of what it was like being in The Source Family that borders on pathological.  
I wanted to share a First Degree podcast from January with Jim Trattner aka Magus where he talks about his own experiences and perceptions of Jim Baker when he joined The Brotherhood of The Source, in an interview that I see as a kind of 'confirmation by us' (a play on the term confirmation bias) in what I consider to be the more honest shared memories and experiences by those former Source Family members who refuse to follow or adhere to the scripted, prescribed and approved Source Family narrative, which only presents or portrays Jim Baker in a heightened and spiritually superior way, while hiding or ignoring the more disturbing aspects of the man and many of his 'aquarian teachings' or directives.
Jim Trattner was given the name, Magus, after he joined The Brotherhood of the Source early on where Jim Baker began to refer to Magus, as the 'elder brother' of the group, perhaps because he was the closest in age to Jim Baker.  But, Jim Baker saw it as 'a feather in his cap', to have someone older and educated like Magus becoming one of his followers.  But, with age and experience brings more questioning and discernment which is often lacking in younger and more inexperienced 'spiritual seekers', as was the case with myself and others who joined The Brotherhood.  So, when Magus began to question Jim Baker's behavior and 'teachings'; especially when Baker began to have sex with more and more women among his following referring to them as 'his women', but mostly because Jim Baker was against any of the members seeking or using medical help outside of the confines of the Brotherhood----Father Yod called Magus a head tripper---someone who thought about things too much---was in their head too much.  I witnessed first hand Jim Baker take it as an affront, when Magus decided to leave The Source Family where Baker spent quite a bit of time, during 'class' rebuking Magus for leaving the group.  Here is a link to the wonderful The First Degree podcast featuring Jim Trattner's excellent interview.