Ananda members talk, March & April, 1996: Part 9

Who is Standing on the High Moral Ground?
Karen White

March 17, 1996

Dear D…,

Congratulations on so successfully tuning into the mass consciousness. Global whining really is becoming the fashion these days. You got the politically correct buzz words, too —“a dialog is happening”, “abusive sexual encounters”, dysfunction, not to mention, the victim consciousness currently in vogue. Perhaps you’d like to contact Oprah Winfrey and arrange for a public “dialog” so we can all clear the air and really get “unstuck”. This business of writing sappy letters to each other seems so archaic when you think of how many people could be enjoying this via television.

It’s perfectly clear that you read the declarations of these high minded women who have been so evilly used and, in your infinite wisdom, have determined that their slant on what happened is the truth and Swami be damned. Well, on a virtual dare from a friend, I read those declarations. But, I am acquainted with many of those women and believe that the slant was definitely in their favor.

They have, after years of “suffering”, decided to seize the mantle of “victim”, join their voices in a chorus of whining, and stick it to that reprehensible bum, Kriyananda. (“Oh, you heartless witch!” I can hear you whimpering. “Had you any experience in these painful matters, you could not so cavalierly dismiss them.” Well, Honey, many of us have our stories to tell about similar encounters with similar powerful men and mine, for one, did not end so benignly as those of the aforementioned declarers. But like many other young women, I accepted the responsibility for my actions and refused to be a victim, neither whining nor seeking revenge. I accepted my situation as an opportunity to grow and continued to persevere. Thus I found my spiritual path and Master.)

You repeatedly tell us that you forgive Swamiji for not being perfect, but you will not tolerate his “hiding” his sexual sins. (Well, I don’t know where you’ve been, but I haven’t seen any conspiracy to mislead the flock. Maybe you consider it hiding because he didn’t take out ads in the Villager to inform us that he had strayed from the straight and narrow. Boy, oh boy, could we sell a lot of Villagers if everybody In this community who engaged in “abusive sexual encounters” either outside their marriages or without benefit of clergy had to take out an ad about their personal business.)

Now, from your penultimate position in the rarefied atmosphere of what is morally acceptable for the leader of your spiritual community, you are advocating impeaching the fellow. If we had to apply your standards to everyone on this community and “kick the bums out”, there would be lots of available housing. And what would the impeachment of Swamiji accomplish anyway? Do you think the community would be staking out the high moral ground and look all righteous? Well, Sport. when the karma hits the fan it doesn’t matter where you stand, because if it’s yours, you’re gonna get it.

Its gotta be difficult for you to have a laugh in your position as the somber spokesman for the vast numbers of the fainthearted who no longer want to follow Swamiji but can’t quite summon up the courage to make their positions known. In my opinion, if you’re not willing to be shamed, blamed, labeled, shunned, or lose your job in support of your spiritual principles, you might as well crawl into a hole and die. And this does not apply solely to those who aren’t willing to follow Swamiji any longer. It applies equally to those of us who choose to remain at Ananda with a “flawed” spiritual director. We’ll likely be getting our fair share of shame, blame, labels, and shunning from what’s coming, too. I plan to stick out my chin and take what comes, with a smile on my face. For, as Master said “Those who are too good for this world are adorning another.”

As you can see from my letter, I’m not waiting to arrive in the Astral world to start yucking it up over this most excellent dream we’re sharing. I believe in having a laugh wherever I find one.

Hope you find some here, as well.

Yucking it up ’til I fall off my perch,
Karen White