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My Life and Death in a Cult
By Elisabeth Fraser

ISBN: 9781847478184
Published: 2009
Pages: 500
Key Themes: autobiography, cult membership, regained independence

Description

Elisabeth’s book is written to help those caught up in obsessive spiritual sects and guru movements. Recounting the extraordinary events of a long life filled with great joys and harrowing griefs, Elisabeth generously traces her soul journey of awakening for the benefit and inspiration of others.
After describing her almost idyllic childhood, she covers the circumstances that led to marriage and - despite her best intentions towards her family - to permanent separation from husband and children, and virtual incarceration and domination within a religious cult.
She relates how a virtually unknown James Bond figure snatched her away, and how they set up a new and happy life together before further vicissitude struck.
Animating the whole is the spirit of her endearing personality and indomitable perseverance; a truly inspiring book.

About the Author

Elisabeth had a lengthy career as an Agent and author for Jarrold Publishing. She wrote three books for them - the Scottish Highlands, (translated into five languages), An Illustrated History of Scotland (1997) )and Robert Burns.
Elisabeth has been devoted to investigating ways and means of understanding Life since she was twelve years old. From this early age she became interested, through her parents, in the Theosophical Society. Later, after her first marriage she studied Gurdjieff and Ouspensky's teachings. After leaving the cult in October 1963, she became very interested in Tibetian Buddhism at Samye Ling and later with the Dalia Lama's teachings. Since 1969 she has been devoted to deeply learning about herself through Krishnumurti's teachings. She is based in Edinburgh where she has an Information Centre for Krishnamurti's Teachings.

Book Extract

The beginning chapters set the background and conditions of my life that led me to becoming part of the cult in 1956. At that time, totally against my will, I found myself permanently separated from my children. In the cult I had to conform to the protocols set by the Principal. And to survive in that close-knit community of some twenty-five persons from different backgrounds, became quite a challenge for me.

I discovered during my stay in the cult that the Principal imposed her hypothetical vision of ‘hidden’ Masters as a means of psychologically controlling the group, creating an undercurrent of fear that if we disobeyed her, the Masters would punish us. This caused us to succumb to whatever she commanded us to do, however bizarre. By her method of ‘divide & rule’ we learnt to keep our thoughts to ourselves, thus mistrust developed between us. Hence, it was that I experienced a ‘death’ to my own identity by being brainwashed to conform to the Principal’s dictates and beliefs

I recognise now, that the cult attracted vulnerable people who were persuaded that they had been chosen to do God’s work. It was not until I escaped from this environment, some eight years later, that I realised that all the hard lessons I experienced in the cult, were the very means of preparing me to be open within myself to respond to the wisdom of Krishnamurti and other sages.

On hearing Krishnamurti talk for the first time at Brockwood Park in 1969, some six years after I had left the cult, I was profoundly moved by his radical approach to human psychology. It revolutionised my outlook on life and gave me my first real glimpse of why my life had been so fragmented. Over the years I learned the importance of self-knowledge and self-awareness, which gave me a much clearer understanding of my actions and reactions and the significant fact that no one could really help me, but myself. Furthermore, I learned that it is only in my interactions with others that real self-discovery can take place.

Thus it was that I found myself challenged to live my life as it is and to meet the ‘what is’ steadfastly, whatever it may be: to a certain extent this gave me freedom to move forward from the known into the unknown. To me there is only one intelligent approach to living, and that is when there are no distinguishing differences between humanity and us or for that matter, between Nature and the rest of the Universe.


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This product was added to our catalog on Friday 13 June, 2008.