|Journeys: Susannah Donner (no relation to Mike Donner - Webmaster)|
|Date: October 3rd, 2001|
|I got involved in it in the summer of 1973. I had a boyfriend that started going to the satsangs, so I went along. Next thing I knew, I was in the basement of an ashram, "receiving knowlege." I lived in a "premie house" for a while.
One summer I went home to stay with my mother, and I set up a little Maharji shrine in my room. When my mother saw it, she was aghast that I would have an altar set up for an idol. She was a Christian, and it offended her. Of course, I was foolish and rebellious, and would not honor her sensibilities. I now look on that time with some shame, though I later apologized and also repented of idoltry.
By early 1977, I had stopped going to satsangs. They started sounding phony to my ears. The same old rhetoric, day in and day out. It was a religious game to me---we had gone to Millenium in Houston---oh yes, we were supposed to lift off the ground or some such thing. That was fun, like a big hippie Rainbow gathering.
That was the only time I saw Maharaj-ji in person. I wasn't terribly interested in being a pseudo-Indian, but that is what many of those early Premie gatherings were like. Everybody reinventing themselves, doing the namaste greeting, speaking with a fake Hindi lilt and so forth.
Then there was the question of Maharaj-ji's finances. It was always explained that nothing is too good for God---or in this case---god. I was not a big giver, I just didn't think he needed another new Mazerati for a birthday present. Couldn't we all just sign a card---and stuff a few bills in it if we were feeling generous?
Overall, it was not the best years of my life, as you can tell! Thank God I am out. It wasn't hard. I just faded away. About 6 or 7 years ago I ran into someone who apparently is still a "premie". She invited me to a meeting. So I went just to see what it was about. We sat in a darkened room and watched a 45 minute video of Maharaji flying his jet and intermittently speaking---"the kingdom of God is within"---and other forgettable platitudes. Coming from the mouth of Marharaji I can only say that truthful sayings do not a god make. Anyway, he stole that one from Jesus. When the lights came on, there we were, about 20 of us, all greying, middle aged, old hippies, birkenstock wearing, sweet talking folk. I thought, "get a life!"
After those years, I got married, had 8 children and somewhere in there I became an on-fire lover of Jesus. I missed the "Jesus Movement", as I was too busy trying to be a Hindu. But it doesn't matter. When I was ready, God got ahold of me. The first thing I did back then is get on my face before God and weep for my sins, for they were many. "Her sins which are many, I have forgiven; for she loved much; but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little". A portrait of Jesus, the same yesterday, today and forever. The image of that gaudy altar to Maharaji loomed in my memory and I was sickened by the stench of idoltry, which is the worship of false gods, as my mother must have been.
Praise the one true God, he let me see that awful thing and the entire condition of my soul, and as that stuff poured out, I got washed in the blood of Christ. I won't say anymore, all that past is done. I haven't thought about it in years! But I happened upon this place while browsing through a cult watcher site.