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"When we gave and received blessings in that room on that day, no one could tell the difference between trained deeksha givers and people who were blessing for the first time".

At the time of writing there is actually little indication that deeksha has any effect on the brain different from meditation or other kinds of relaxation.

Er is onlangs een boek verschenen in het nederlands over de deeksha movement, the oneness blessing.
Het nawoord is echter door de organisatie uit het boek verwijderd.
Hierbij het nawoord dat een geheel ander licht werpt op deeksha en de organisatie dan het boek zelf.

Afterword for Awakening into Oneness for the Dutch Edition by Arjuna Ardagh.
I wrote this book about the Oneness Movement in the spring of 2006. The manuscript was completed by the summer. So many changes have gone down in the intervening period that it means that the book you have just read is more of a historical document than a contemporary account.
In this short afterword, I will briefly summarize some of the most significant changes that have happened in the intervening period.
In the summer of 2006, shortly before the research for this book was complete, the Oneness University received a visit from the well-known motivational speaker Tony Robbins and his wife Sage. Soon after their visit, the Robbins invited Bhagavan’s son Krishna, Anandagiri, and Rani Kumra, (at that time the leader of the Oneness Movement in North America) to his resort in Fiji. A number of meetings ensued throughout the fall of 2006 and spring of 2007 resulting in the announcement of a partnership between Tony Robbins and the Oneness Movement.
Plans were made to build an additional campus for training deeksha givers on an adjoining property to the resort in Fiji. It was around the same time that word deeksha was changed to Oneness Blessing. Large event was scheduled all over India called “Breakthru” modeled after Tony Robbins seminars. The monks, who have previously worn white clothes and shaved their heads, now grew their hair out and wore western clothes.
Another significant change since I wrote the book is that the 100 Village Project referred to in Chapter 10 has been essentially abandoned. It was followed briefly by another program called Friends of Oneness but at the time of writing there are no further humanitarian projects underway.
The Oneness Temple referred to in Chapter 12 was completed in the spring of 2008 and a huge consecration ceremony was scheduled for April. There were a significant problems with crowd control at the event such that more and more people kept filling the large upper chamber, while others were not leaving. The event was cancelled after several hours and it took 13 more hours to get everybody out of the temple. Five people died during the incident. The temple was placed under police control for a year.
Of the more than 300 people interviewed for this book, more than 70% have ceased their involvement with the Oneness Movement, including Erwin Laslow who wrote the Forward, Rani Kumra, who was in charge of the American movement, Christian Opitz who did a lot of the initial research in the effects in the brain, and many others.
The brain research referred to in Chapter 4 was never completed. A pilot study was conducted at an Indian Medical Research Institute which showed some increased blood flow during the administration of deeksha. Another study was started at the University of Wisconsin under the direction of Dr. Andrew Newberg, but proved inconclusive. At the time of writing there is actually little indication that deeksha has any effect on the brain different from meditation or other kinds of relaxation.
Perhaps the most significant change took place in November, 2009 when Bhagavan’s son Krishna, Anandagiri, and Vimalkirti (and all of the senior instructors for the university) disaffilated from Amma and Bhagavan to form their own organization, “One World Academy.” They currently still teach courses at the facility in Fiji and other locations.
Soon after this split between Amma and Bhagavan and 25 most senior dasas, it was announced that the teacher training courses (described in Chapter 13) were to be abandoned, and newly created oneness trainers would be able to initiate deeksha givers in their own countries. At the time of writing, this happens in one weekend and is very inexpensive.
In summary, we are all left to come to our own conclusions about this phenomenon. There are many people who feel betrayed, misled and frustrated by Bhagavan’s promises of instant enlightenment and miracles. Others, albeit a small minority, remain loyal to the cause and still consider Bhagavan to be an avatar. Despite all of the upheavals through which this organizations has gone, they still feel that the goal of creating 64,000 deeksha givers by 2012 will somehow significantly affect the collective consciousness of humanity.
The majority of the people I interviewed for this book however fall into a third camp, neither feeling betrayed nor remaining loyal followers. They recognize that their involvement with this phenomenon has opened them to the possibility that human beings have this potential to be an instrument of blessing. They also now realize that it doesn’t require any external authority to make this possibility actual. It only requires an open heart and a strong intention.
For example, I conducted a training program to create Awakening Coaches about a year ago, in Nevada City where I live. 30 or 40 people were present. Someone asked if we could have a deeksha. I thought about it for a moment. A couple of the people had been to India for the 21-day course. One had been to several courses. Some people present were very skeptical and opposed to it. Others had never heard of the possibility of blessing until a few minutes before.
So I came in up with a suggestion. “Sure.” I said. “Let’s give and receive blessings. But everybody in the room can give blessing in whatever way they choose, and everyone can also receive.”
When we gave and received blessings in that room on that day, no one could tell the difference between trained deeksha givers and people who were blessing for the first time. And so it was, for me at least, that I could be grateful for the possibilities that the Oneness Movement had opened to me, to but leave behind the need for any organization to contain it.
We are, all of us, you and me and your next door neighbor, avatars in disguise. In one paradoxical reality, that can only be lived but not understood, we are both the seeker and the savior, the recipient and the bestower of blessings.
Whether or not you choose to further your involvement with the Oneness Movement or not, hopefully this little book will have inspired you to the possibility of your own presence as a source of blessing to everyone you meet.

Arjuna Ardagh
Nevada City, April 2010

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