All questions, accusations, and allegations, implied or otherwise, have not yet been ruled upon in a court of law. Some of them may never be. In the United States, defendents are innocent until proven guilty. These are public documents available at the San Mateo county courthouse, in California, USA. Mr. Walters is a public figure, and these documents are presented here for informational purposes.
1 IN THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
2 IN AND FOR THE COUNTY OF SAN MATEO
4 (the plaintiff),
6 vs. No. 390 230
7 ANANDA CHURCH OF GOD REALIZATION, a California
8 not-for-profit corporation,et al. Defendants.
13 DEPOSITION OF DONALD WALTERS
Volume I; Pages 1 - ***
Wednesday, September 6, 1995
REPORTED BY: HOLLY THUMAN, CSR NO. 6834, RPR TOOKER & ANTZ
24 CERTIFIED SHORTHAND REPORTERS STEUART STREET, SUITE 201
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA 94105
1 I N D E X
EXAMINATION BY: PAGE MR. FLYNN:
6 PLAINTIFF'S FOR IDENTIFICATION PAGE
1 Letter dated August 31 from
8 Kriyananda to "Dear Ones"
9 2 Declaration of James Donald Walters in
Support of Motion for Summary
10 Adjudication 3 Rules of Conduct for Members, Ananda
World Brotherhood Village
2 BE IT REMEMBERED that on Wednesday, September 6,
3 1995 commencing at 10:09 a.m., thereof, at Tooker & Antz,
4 Certified Shorthand Reporters, 131 Steuart Street, Suite
5 201, San Francisco, California, before me, HOLLY THUMAN,
6 duly authorized to administer oaths pursuant to Section
7 2093(b) of the California Code of Civil Procedure,
8 personally appeared
9 DONALD WALTERS,
10 called as a witness, who, having been first duly sworn, was
11 examined and testified as hereinafter set forth.
14 FLYNN, SHERIDAN & TABB, P.O. Box 690, 6125 El
15 Tordo, Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067, represented by MICHAEL J.
16 FLYNN and PHILIP H. STILLMAN, Attorneys at Law, appeared as
17 counsel on behalf of the Plaintiff.
18 HUB LAW OFFICES, 711 Sir Francis Drake Boulevard,
19 San Anselmo, California 94960, represented by FORD GREENE,
20 Attorney at Law, appeared as counsel on behalf of the
22 JON R. PARSONS, Attorney at Law, 2501 Park
23 Boulevard, Suite 207, Palo Alto, California 94306-1925,
24 represented by JON R. PARSONS, Attorney at Law, appeared as
25 counsel on behalf of the Defendants.
2 Also present when indicated were YVONNE HANCHETT;
3 PAUL FRIEDMAN; DR. PETER VAN HOUTEN; ASHA PRAVER; JOHN
4 NOVAK; and SHEILA RUSH.
5 Videographer: ROBERT BARBAGELATA, Dan Mottaz
6 Video Productions, One Lansdale Avenue, San Francisco,
7 California 94127, (415) 731-1300.
1 September 6, 1995 10:09 a.m.
3 EXAMINATION BY MR. FLYNN
4 THE VIDEO OPERATOR: Good morning. This marks
5 the beginning of videotape number 1 in the deposition of
6 Donald Waters --
7 THE WITNESS: Walters.
8 THE VIDEO OPERATOR: Excuse me, Walters, thank you
9 sir -- in the matter of (the plaintiff) versus Ananda
10 Church of God Realization, et al., in the Superior Court of
11 the State of California in and for the County of
12 San Mateo. The case number is 390230.
13 Today's date is September 6, 1995, and the time is
14 10:11 a.m.
15 The location of this deposition is 131 Steuart
16 Street on the second floor in San Francisco, California.
17 The deposition was noticed by attorney for the
18 Plaintiff, and the videotape is being produced on behalf of
20 The video operator is Robert Barbagelata, a
21 California Notary Public for the County of San Mateo,
22 employed by Dan Mottaz Video Productions at One Lansdale
23 Avenue in San Francisco, California 94127, Area Code 415,
25 Would counsel present today please identify
1 themselves and state whom you represent?
2 MR. FLYNN: Okay. I'll start. Good morning. My
3 name is Michael Flynn, and I represent the Plaintiff,
4 (the plaintiff).
5 MR. STILLMAN: Good morning. Philip Stillman,
6 Flynn, Sheridan & Tabb, for the Plaintiff, (the plaintiff)
8 MR. GREENE: Ford Greene, G-r-e-e-n-e, sole
9 practitioner on behalf of Plaintiff, (the plaintiff).
10 MR. PARSONS: Do you want to include the other
11 legal staff here?
12 MR. FLYNN: No. I don't think we need to.
13 THE WITNESS: I'm Donald Walters for Church of --
14 Ananda Church of Self-Realization now. It was God
16 MR. PARSONS: And Jon Parsons appearing on behalf
17 of the defendants.
18 MR. FLYNN: Are there any stipulations for the
20 MR. PARSONS: I'm not certain we need any at this
22 MR. FLYNN: No. We're going to proceed according
23 to the rules.
24 THE VIDEO OPERATOR: Okay. Swear in the witness
25 and proceed.
1 MR. FLYNN: Holly, would you swear in Mr. Walters,
3 (The oath was administered.)
4 MR. FLYNN: Q. Would you state your name for the
5 record please, sir?
6 A. Donald Walters.
7 Q. How old are you, Mr. Walters?
8 A. I am 69.
9 Q. And I understand you're known by other names?
10 A. Yes. Kriyananda.
11 Q. Where did you get that name?
12 A. I got that name in 1955.
13 Q. Who gave it to you?
14 A. Daya Mata, the president of Self-Realization
16 Q. What is Self-Realization Fellowship?
17 A. Self-Realization Fellowship is an organization
18 started by Paramhansa Yogananda in nineteen -- I guess it
19 was incorporated in 1935. He came to this country in 1920.
20 Q. And apparently, you were part of this
21 organization, Self-Realization Fellowship?
22 A. Yes. Yes.
23 Q. Can you explain a little bit about how you became
24 affiliated with that organization?
25 A. I became affiliated. I was there for 14 years.
1 Q. When?
2 A. I came to him in 1948.
3 Q. How old were you at that time?
4 A. 22.
5 Q. What was your occupation?
6 A. I had no occupation.
7 Q. Had you gone to college?
8 A. Pardon?
9 Q. Had you gone to college?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Where did you go to college?
12 A. I went to Haverford, and then Brown.
13 Q. Haverford College, where was that, sir?
14 A. That's outside Philadelphia. And Brown, of
15 course, you know, being from Boston. That's in Rhode
17 Q. Did you graduate from Haverford?
18 A. No. I left there after 2 years. I left Brown
19 after a year and a half, and went down to the Dock Street
20 Theater to study playwrighting. And I was there for a year;
21 realized what I wanted was God.
22 And so from then on, I've dedicated my life to
23 seeking God.
24 Q. How have you dedicated your life to seeking God?
25 A. By meditation, by service, by helping to share
1 what I believe with other people, and by prayer.
2 Q. Have you been seeking God in the form of some
3 traditional religious organization?
4 A. Yogananda came to show the unity between the
5 original teachings of Krishna and the original teachings of
7 So the tradition I follow is not a blend of those
8 two so much as a recognition of the unity in the teachings
9 of those two great teachers. And what I teach is a
10 traditional teaching.
11 Q. Traditional teaching of who?
12 A. Both. Through the interpretation and --
13 explanation, I should say, of Yogananda.
14 Q. Now, Yogananda, can you tell us who he is, or
15 was? Is he still alive?
16 A. No. He passed away in 1952.
17 Yogananda was sent here to this country by his
18 teacher to disseminate the teachings of yoga -- which is to
19 say of meditation, not the yoga postures -- and to help
20 people to find themselves and their relationship with God
21 through quietening of the mind.
22 You see, the difference between prayer and
23 meditation is that prayer talks to God; meditation listens
24 for his answer.
25 So he taught both.
1 Q. This fellow Yogananda did?
2 A. This saint Yogananda did.
3 Q. Right. And when did he die?
4 A. '52.
5 Q. And you became known as Kriyananda 3 years after
6 his death?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And you mentioned someone named Daya Mata?
9 A. Daya Mata is presently still the president. She
10 is the third president of Self-Realization Fellowship.
11 Q. And you said she was the one who gave you this
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And in what context did she give you the name?
15 A. It was as a monastic vow. I joined the monastic
16 order, and this was final vows that I took in 1955.
17 Nor can I say with entire justice that she gave me
18 the name, because the name came to me in medication. I
19 proposed that as the name I wanted, so she granted that to
21 Q. By what authority did she grant that to you?
22 A. She granted it to me as a representative of
24 Q. Was she the head of his organization at that time?
25 A. Yes -- yes, at that time she was.
1 Q. And you mentioned final vows. What were those
2 final vows that you took?
3 A. The final vows were of poverty, chastity and
4 obedience and loyalty. Those four.
5 Q. Poverty, chastity, loyalty and obedience?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And what does "final" mean?
8 A. Final means that you take that vow for the rest of
9 your life.
10 I did not remain in the order; therefore, those
11 vows did not bind me after leaving the order except to the
12 extent that I chose to let them.
13 Q. Oh, who says that?
14 A. Pardon?
15 Q. Who said that the vows no longer bound you after
16 you left this order?
17 A. Well, as a matter of fact, in 1985, I got her to
18 dispense me from those vows.
19 Q. Can you explain how that happened?
20 A. Yes. I went to see her, and she prayed to God and
21 to our line of gurus and removed that restriction on me,
22 whatever you want to call it.
23 Q. Why did you ask for that restriction to be removed?
24 A. Because I was going to be married.
25 Q. In 1985, did you say?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Now, who did you marry then?
3 A. I married Rosanna Golia, from Naples, Italy.
4 Q. Had you ever been married before that?
5 A. Not legally.
6 Q. What do you mean by not legally?
7 A. Not legally means that it was a marriage before
8 God, but not before the law.
9 Q. So you married someone before you dispensed with
10 your vows?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Even though the vows were final?
13 A. My dear sir, my vows are between me and God, not
14 between me and the courts. How final they are and how I
15 treat them is my business.
16 Q. Well, why did you take them?
17 A. Why did I take them?
18 Q. Why did you make them final?
19 A. That was the system, and I accepted it. And I
20 have done the best throughout my life to live by them even
21 in marriage.
22 Q. Well, I'm a little confused.
23 Apparently, on your own, you married someone in
24 conflict with your vows. And then several years later --
25 A. No.
1 Q. -- you married someone else?
2 A. No. I made the announcement then that I was not
3 following that way.
4 I gave this announcement, made this announcement
5 public. I was -- I even put an article in the Yoga Journal
6 to help make it clear that I was taking this step
7 deliberately, and I was taking it because I felt that this
8 was the need of our community and of our times.
9 Q. I thought you said the vows were between you and
11 A. Well, that's true.
12 Q. Why did you put it in the Yoga Journal?
13 A. The breaking of them was already the business of
14 the public.
15 Q. Who told you that?
16 A. I said that.
17 Q. Now, you mentioned that the vows are part of a
18 monastic order?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. What monastic order was that?
21 A. This was the Self-Realization order.
22 Q. Is that the formal name of the order?
23 A. I guess so. It's Self-Realization Fellowship, so
24 -- see, when you've got a new organization, you don't have
25 categories as clearly defined. So you could say
1 Self-Realization Fellowship order, order of Self-Realization
2 Fellowship Church.
3 It's all the same thing. It was of that
4 organization founded by Yogananda.
5 In 1962, I ceased to be a part of that
6 organization. From then on, I had to follow my own inner
8 Q. Well, I'm a little confused. Let me ask you
10 Did -- is Yogananda the person who founded that
12 A. No. It's a very ancient order. He represented
13 that order, and that order is a Swamy order.
14 Q. Wait. Let's talk about that for a minute. A
15 swamy order?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Is that what Yogananda belonged to?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And where does the swamy order derive from?
20 A. It's -- it was reorganized -- nobody knows how
21 ancient it is, but it was reorganized by Swamy
22 Chankaracharya probably 2000 years ago, but it's uncertain
23 when he was -- when he lived.
24 Q. And so Yogananda was a part of the Swamy order?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And he took vows as part of the Swamy Order?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And you took the same vows as part of the Swamy
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. When you took the vows, did you become a swamy?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And again, that was in 1955?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Which I believe you said was 3 years after
11 Yogananda died?
12 A. Right.
13 Q. And the vows were poverty, chastity, loyalty and
14 obedience. Is that correct?
15 MR. PARSONS: Objection.
16 THE WITNESS: Yes.
17 MR. PARSONS: It's been asked and answered.
18 MR. FLYNN: Q. Now, chastity, what did that vow
19 -- you took a final vow of chastity.
20 What did that mean in the Swamy order in 1955?
21 A. Why don't you figure for yourself what it means.
22 Q. Well, sir, fortunately, for better or worse, I get
23 to ask the questions, and you get to answer them. So I'd
24 like an answer.
25 A. What it means is that you're chaste.
1 Q. No sex?
2 A. Uh-huh.
3 Q. Can I have an answer to that?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Chaste means no sex?
6 A. Right, right.
7 Q. So you took a final vow of no sex in 1955?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. As part of this Swamy order which was part of this
10 Yogananda tradition?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And in 1985, you went to this person -- what's her
14 A. Rosanna Golia.
15 Q. No, no. The person you went to to dispense of the
17 A. Daya Mata.
18 Q. And in 1985, she was the head of Yogananda's
20 A. Yes.
21 MR. PARSONS: These questions have been asked and
22 answered already. You should take notes if you're going to
23 have to keep asking him to repeat it.
24 MR. FLYNN: Q. Now, can you explain a little more
25 about who this fellow Yogananda was?
1 You mentioned that he was a saint. Can you --
2 A. What specific things are you interested in?
3 Q. Well, was he a saint in the sense that -- you know
4 how the Catholic church or various institutionalized
5 churches designate someone a saint, they canonize them and
6 they --
7 A. You may never do that until a person is dead.
8 Q. So --
9 MR. PARSONS: Mr. Walters, let's wait until he's
10 formulated a question so we can have some sort of coherent
12 MR. FLYNN: Q. So was Yogananda declared a saint
13 after he died?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Was he declared a saint before he died?
16 A. We considered him a saint.
17 Q. "We" being who?
18 A. Those who have followed him.
19 Q. So when you took those vows of poverty, chastity,
20 obedience and loyalty, you took those vows of, for example,
21 obedience to Yogananda?
22 A. Yes. Except that that was not -- I gave him my
23 obedience when I met him.
24 Q. Well, I -- lets -- in 1955, he was dead, and you
25 were taking the vows.
1 A. Obviously, that would not be -- but the loyal --
2 Q. Who were you giving those vows to?
3 A. Obedience to his teachings, you could say.
4 Obedience to my superior, which would be Daya Mata. That's
6 Q. Well, let me ask you this: Was there a formal
7 ritualized statement --
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. -- that you made when you took the vows?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And did that statement recite that you were vowing
12 to obey Yogananda, Yogananda's teachings, Yogananda's --
13 A. Through his representative, who was my superior.
14 Q. I see. Okay. And with regard to loyalty, when
15 you took the vow in 1955, 3 years after Yogananda died, who
16 were you vowing to be loyal to?
17 A. The organization. And of course, I was loyal to
18 him. There was no question about it.
19 Q. And the organization is what organization, sir?
20 A. The one I've mentioned.
21 Q. Which is what?
22 A. Why don't you tell me? I've told you five times.
23 MR. PARSONS: You're absolutely right that we're
24 apparently repeating things numerous times now.
25 The organization has already been identified as
1 the Self-Realization Fellowship.
2 MR. FLYNN: Q. Okay. That's different than your
4 A. Yes. Mine didn't exist.
5 Q. So when you went to this person in 1985 to
6 dispense with the vows, did you dispense with the vow of
7 loyalty to that Self-Realization Fellowship organization?
8 A. Oh, that was changed long before that, because I
9 left the organization in '62.
10 However, I have remained loyal in every way that I
11 could, not being a part of it. In other words, I believe in
12 it and I support it.
13 Q. Well, aren't you in litigation with that
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. But you're loyal to it?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. To the organization?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Are you obedient to that organization?
21 A. I can't be. I would be if I could be, but I can't.
22 Q. When you went to see this fellow, this person Daya
23 Mata, in 1985, did you ask to be dispensed -- to be
24 dispensed of the vow of loyalty and obedience at that time?
25 A. It was generally just my vows.
1 However, it was understood from 1962 that in fact
2 I had no obligation to them of any kind. So it was a
3 formality, and you would like perhaps to call it a
4 sentiment, but there was no obligation.
5 Q. Is that the way they felt, or is that the way you
7 A. Both.
8 Q. Did they give you a letter to that effect saying,
9 you're no longer bound by your vows, in 1962?
10 A. They said, you're no longer a part of us.
11 Q. Who said that?
12 A. That's the -- I suspect -- let's see. That would
13 be the vice president at that time.
14 Q. What was his name?
15 A. Her name.
16 Q. Oh, her name. What was her name. Pardon me.
17 A. Tara, T-a-r-a.
18 Q. Tara --
19 A. Mata.
20 Q. Tara Mata?
21 A. Mata means mother in Sanskrit.
22 Q. I see. Same last name as this Daya Mata.
23 A. Yeah, because it's not a name. It's a title.
24 Q. And Kriyananda was a title or a name for you?
25 A. A name, yes.
1 Q. Now, you never graduated from Haverford or Brown?
2 A. No. Haverford or Brown, no, I didn't.
3 Q. It compels me to ask, I know you testified you
4 left, but forgive me for asking, but did you flunk out?
5 A. No. I took a leave of absence and never went back.
6 Q. Were you flunking any courses and were on the
7 verge of flunking out?
8 A. Well, I think I flunked one course. But no, I was
9 not flunking. I was still persona grata there.
10 Q. Having been a college person at one point in time
11 and having had your typical rough spots, some people leave
12 college when they think they're going to flunk out anyway.
13 Were you in that position?
14 A. Not at all. No. I was thinking -- I was seeking
15 something that they weren't giving me.
16 Q. What was that?
17 A. Truth.
18 Q. What courses were you seeking truth in?
19 A. I was trying to find a way of life that would help
20 me to feel more attuned to reality, more inspiration, more
21 love. All these things weren't a part of academia.
22 Q. Well, you were a student. Right? You weren't a
24 A. I was a student.
25 Q. So are there any courses -- did you take any
1 philosophy courses?
2 A. Uh-huh.
3 Q. What philosophy courses did you take?
4 A. Well, I brought a poetry book to class.
5 I didn't like the intellectual approach to truth.
6 I felt that that was not the way I wanted to find truth.
7 Not with the mind, but with the soul.
8 Q. What is truth?
9 A. That's a question that you can only understand,
10 not by definition, but by experience.
11 Q. Intellectually, it can't be grasped. Is that what
12 you're saying?
13 A. You can grasp theories, but you grasp the
14 experience by the intellect.
15 Q. How do facts differ from truth?
16 MR. PARSONS: Wait, excuse me. I object to the
17 relevance of this. And what do you mean by facts and truth,
18 and we're getting far afield on any sort of relevancy here.
19 MR. FLYNN: I'm just picking up on your own
20 client's testimony, Mr. Parsons.
21 MR. PARSONS: Well, I'm going to object to that
22 question. I'm going to instruct the witness not to answer
23 the distinction between facts and truths.
24 MR. FLYNN: Q. Dock Street Theater. I believe
25 you testified that came after you left Brown.
1 Incidentally, what course were you flunking?
2 A. What course did I flunk?
3 Q. Yeah.
4 A. Well, it's ironic, because I've composed so much
5 music, over 300 pieces. But I flunked music composition.
6 The reason I flunked is that I never went to class.
7 Q. Why did you not go to class?
8 A. Because I had lost interest in college.
9 Q. But you were interested in music?
10 A. Not at that time, no. If I'd really known that I
11 would be composing music, I would have studied. But I had
12 no idea.
13 Q. Did you take any psychology courses?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Have you ever studied psychology?
16 A. No. Just the way a dilettante would study.
17 Q. You mentioned 300 pieces of music you've
18 composed. Is this pop music, classical music, jazz, R&B?
19 What kind of music is this?
20 A. Much more classical than any of the others, but
21 you might call it --
22 Q. Orchestral music?
23 A. I beg your pardon?
24 MR. PARSONS: Excuse me. Please let him finish
25 his answer.
1 THE WITNESS: You might call it neo-classical in
2 the sense that it's more new age than baroque, but it's
4 And so I don't follow the structure of classical
5 music so much. I wrote a quartet, and that follows the
6 structure, except that I didn't even realize that a quartet
7 usually has four movements, and this only has three, so that
8 shows my lack of sophistication.
9 Mostly what I write is from inside. But it's
10 melodic, and its purpose is to uplift. It's to touch the
11 soul rather than the intellect and the emotions. And it's,
12 fortunately for me, had very good reviews.
13 But that can't really tell you much about it.
14 It's probably my best answer briefly.
15 MR. PARSONS: Excuse me one second.
16 (Discussion between the witness and his counsel.)
17 MR. FLYNN: The record will note the conversation.
18 Q. You mentioned the word "soul." What do you mean
19 by the soul?
20 A. The soul is that aspect of our nature which is a
21 part of God.
22 Q. What do you mean by God?
23 A. Again, I think probably you need to experience
24 such things.
25 Q. Okay. Now, have you experienced God?
1 A. I beg your pardon?
2 Q. Have you experienced God?
3 MR. PARSONS: I'm going to object. That's
4 inquiring too -- too intimately into one's personal
5 religious experience.
6 I'm going to instruct the witness not to answer
7 whether he has experienced God.
8 THE WITNESS: But I feel comfortable saying --
9 answering another question.
10 Am I enlightened? No.
11 MR. FLYNN: Q. Well, I -- what's -- you keep
12 making these statements, Mr. Walters, which impels me to ask
13 these questions.
14 What is enlightenment?
15 A. Knowing your relationship with God by direct
17 MR. FLYNN: Okay. You're not going to let him
18 answer the prior question, Mr. Parsons, with regard to
19 whether or not -- even though he's given this testimony
20 about the definition of the word "soul," which he's used in
21 his testimony --
22 Q. As I understand, it's something to do with knowing
23 your relationship to God. I think that was the definition.
24 A. No.
25 Q. No, I didn't get it right?
1 A. No, you didn't get it right.
2 Q. Okay. Can you make it more right for me?
3 A. The soul is that aspect of God which is in each
4 one of us,
5 In other words, behind your ego, there is the
6 presence of God. And that's your true self, and that's
7 self-realization, to realize that. To realize that you are
8 not Mr. Flynn; you're God acting a role as he acts in every
9 atom in this universe.
10 It depersonalizes your existence and makes you
11 realize that you're a part of the infinite.
12 Q. So I'm not really a lawyer; I'm part of some
13 abstract, conceptual entity or flow in time?
14 A. It seems abstract only as long as you think you're
15 a lawyer.
16 Q. And if I don't think I am a lawyer, then what
17 would I think?
18 A. Well, you might be thinking something else. I'm
19 not talking about that. I'm talking about when you stop
20 thinking, when you rise above thought.
21 Q. But if I didn't think I was a lawyer, would I
22 realize God?
23 A. No.
24 MR. PARSONS: Objection. It calls for
1 Let's try to get back on to something that has
2 some relevance.
3 THE WITNESS: It's also wasting time.
4 MR. PARSONS: Yes, very much so.
5 MR. FLYNN: Q. Now, Dock Street Theater, how long
6 did you last there?
7 A. I stayed there one year.
8 Q. Did you graduate from Dock Street Theater?
9 A. No, I never even joined. I studied sort of as a
10 layperson who was writing a play on his own and taking part
11 in the dramatic activities there.
12 Q. I know nothing about Dock Street Theater. Was it
13 a training school for theatrics?
14 MR. PARSONS: Just let him --
15 THE WITNESS: Let him ask the question, yes.
16 MR. FLYNN: Q. Was it a training school for
18 A. It had a training school. This is different.
19 Dock Street Theater, it's still there, and it's a
20 very old -- I don't know how old, but much, much before my
22 It's a community theater, and they had classes
23 there, a course, for people who enrolled in this course.
24 I didn't want to study there, because I wasn't
25 interested in becoming an actor. I wanted to learn stage
1 craft. So I took part in the plays and the productions
2 there. I was friends with them, but I didn't study there in
3 that sense.
4 Q. Oh, okay. See, I kind of misunderstood you,
5 because I kind of had you going from being a student at
6 Brown -- being a student the Haverford, being a student and
7 Brown, and being a student at Dock Street Theater.
8 A. No.
9 Q. But that's not correct. You were never a student
10 at Dock Street Theater?
11 A. Right.
12 Q. Was that the type of institution that had a -- you
13 paid tuition to go to classes there?
14 A. Well, since I didn't pay tuition and didn't go to
15 classes, I have to assume that that's what they did, but I
16 don't know.
17 Q. You don't know. Okay.
18 But in any event, you had no affiliation to Dock
19 Street Theater --
20 A. Not --
21 Q. Other than kind of hanging out there?
22 A. Yeah, that's about right.
23 Q. Okay. But as far as Haverford and Brown, you were
24 enrolled as a student at both those institutions and paid
25 tuition. Is that correct?
1 A. That is correct.
2 Q. And you hung out at the Dock Street Theater for
3 about a year?
4 MR. PARSONS: That's been asked and answered.
5 MR. FLYNN: Q. Okay. Now, then at age 22, which
6 was what, 1948, did you say?
7 A. (Witness nods head.)
8 Q. -- you met Yogananda. Where did you meet him?
9 A. Los Angeles.
10 Q. And what were the circumstances under which you
11 met him?
12 MR. PARSONS: Objection. That question is vague.
13 What do you mean by "circumstances"?
14 MR. FLYNN: Q. Well, did you meet him in a pub,
15 did you meet him at a --
16 A. I met him at the Hollywood Church of
17 Self-Realization Fellowship.
18 Q. At the Hollywood Church. Okay.
19 And what was his function at that church?
20 A. He had been giving a service there. It was
21 Sunday, and he had interviews afterward, and I saw him then.
22 Q. Can you recall what you said to him, what he said
23 to you?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And what was that, sir?
1 A. I am sorry, that's between me and God. I don't
2 talk about things that are sacred to me just in a deposition.
3 Q. Well, was this like a confessional type --
4 A. No -- yes, it was, in a way.
5 Q. Like --
6 A. He asked me about my life, and I told him.
7 MR. PARSONS: So informally --
8 MR. FLYNN: Q. I'll respect that. I mean, if you
9 tell me it was like a confessional, we can --
10 A. It's a very sacred moment in my life.
11 Q. This -- the meeting --
12 A. The meeting.
13 Q. The fact of the meeting or the conversation, or
15 A. The moment. That means the fact. The meeting of
16 course made possible the facts.
17 Q. Okay. So what happened then? You then joined his
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And did you start working for his organization?
21 A. Yes. I lived there in the monastery and did the
22 work that they did.
23 Q. What kind of work did you do?
24 A. Well, it was mostly gardening, plastering, that
25 kind of thing.
1 Q. All right. And how long did you garden and
3 A. Not very long. About 4 months, I think.
4 Then he put me in the job of answering letters and
5 correcting the exam papers that people sent in.
6 Q. How long did you do that?
7 A. Well, probably off and on for the rest of my time
9 Q. Would it be a correct statement for me to say that
10 in 1948, at the age of 22, you decided after having met
11 Yogananda to dedicate your life to Yogananda and God?
12 A. Well, the decision was made before I met him.
13 Q. Can you explain that?
14 A. I had been planning to spend my life in seclusion.
15 And I didn't know how to meditate; I was trying to meditate
16 without any knowledge of what it meant.
17 But it said in the Indian scriptures that you need
18 to medicate to know God, and to know your higher self, to
19 quiet the mind so that you can be aware of your higher self.
20 I came upon Autobiography of a Yogi in
21 Doubleday-Doran -- it was Doubleday-Doran at that time; now
22 it's Doubleday -- in New York City. And I was so moved by
23 that book that I took the next bus to California.
24 But my decision had been made. It was up to him
25 whether he accepted me or not. But I can't say that meeting
1 him was my conversion. The conversion occurred before I met
3 Q. Let me say -- put it this way.
4 Around the time that you read Autobiography of a
5 Yogi -- which is a book authored, presumably, I take it from
6 your testimony, by Yogananda?
7 A. It's authored by Yogananda, yes.
8 Q. Okay. Around the time you read this book by
9 Yogananda, and met him, you decided to commit yourself to
10 pursuing God and Yogananda's teachings.
11 Is that a fair statement?
12 A. Well, before that, I decided to commit my life to
13 God. I'd been seeking God for many years.
14 So I felt finally I'd met somebody I could follow,
15 because I felt he had wisdom.
16 Q. Fair enough. So prior to meeting Yogananda, you
17 had been seeking God for a number of years.
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Around the time you read this book and met
20 Yogananda, you decided to seek God through Yogananda. Is
21 that a fair statement?
22 A. No. The fair statement is that I felt he could
23 teach me; that he knew things that I didn't know; that he
24 would help me to -- I found that I wasn't getting very far
25 in working on myself.
1 I needed somebody who could know my nature and
2 tell me what I needed to do that would help me to grow.
3 But in fact, I didn't know anything about these
4 things at that time.
5 Q. Well, you read the book before you met the person
6 who wrote it?
7 A. A week before.
8 Q. Right?
9 A. A week before.
10 Q. Oh, okay. A week before.
11 Now, I've heard this term "guru" a lot in this
12 litigation. And did Yogananda become your guru?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Did -
15 A. I should add something there.
16 Q. Sure.
17 A. He never -- he said, I never say, and I never
18 heard him say, I am the guru. He said, God is the guru. I
19 don't have disciples; they are God's disciples.
20 And he always maintained that attitude. In other
21 words, didn't draw energy to himself, but he helped us to
22 direct that energy, our energy, toward our own higher self
23 and toward God.
24 Q. Fine. Did you consider Yogananda to be your guru?
25 A. In God.
1 Q. Can I get a "yes" or "no"?
2 A. No. And I'll tell you why not, if you want to
4 Q. I'd love to know.
5 A. Because a lot of people think that the person is
6 what people who follow gurus are attracted to.
7 It wasn't the person. It was the truths that he
8 represented. It was not a personal or idol thing, i-d-o-l.
9 It was the fact that this man could inspire me in a way that
10 nobody else had to find that truth within myself.
11 So when people nowadays use the word "guru," they
12 abuse the word, and I don't want to support that abuse.
13 Q. All right. Well, let me see if I can simplify
14 this a lot.
15 Since 1948, have you considered Yogananda to be
16 your guru?
17 A. Absolutely.
18 Q. And as your guru -- strike that.
19 Between 1948 and 1955, when you took the vows, did
20 you consider Yogananda to be your guru?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And when you took the vows in 1955, those were
23 final vows.
24 Now, during that 1948 to 1955 7-year period, were
25 you like in training to determine whether you were fit to
1 take those final vows, or ready to take those final vows,
2 like in other religious organizations?
3 MR. PARSONS: Well, that's a compound question now
4 that requires --
5 MR. FLYNN: Q. It is compound. But can you
6 answer it? You've got the drift of it.
7 MR. PARSONS: Well, I don't know if he can answer
8 what he thinks might be the question you think you asked.
9 MR. FLYNN: Q. All right. Between 1948 and 1955,
10 were you like in a training period to determine whether you
11 were ready to take the final vows?
12 A. I guess so.
13 Q. So then after 7 years, you decided you were
15 A. Yes. They invited me to take them.
16 Q. When you took those final --
17 A. In other words, it wasn't my gradual trying to
18 convince myself. It's the system that people at that time
19 had to wait 7 years -- now I believe it's 10 -- before they
20 were invited.
21 Q. Oh, I see. So there was a rule?
22 A. Uh-huh.
23 Q. And then the rule was 7 years?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Now the rule is 10 years?
1 A. I think, but I don't know. I'm not with them now.
2 Q. Oh, the rule is 10 years in that organization?
3 A. I'm talking about that organization.
4 Q. Which is Self-Realization Fellowship?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And there's a shorthand expression for that, isn't
8 A. Pardon?
9 Q. Can we use the acronym for that --
10 A. SRF.
11 Q. SRF. We'll use that acronym, and we'll know what
12 we mean?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Okay. Now, your organization is separate from
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. What is the rule in your organization with regard
18 to how long you wait to take vows
19 A. We are not --
20 MR. PARSONS: Assuming there is such a rule in our
21 vows, et cetera, I'll let the witness answer.
22 THE WITNESS: Our rule is different.
23 MR. FLYNN: Q. What is your rule?
24 A. Our rule is, it's a householder community. So
25 what people promise is that they will live lives of
2 That is to say, voluntary self-control of
3 simplicity, not poverty; and -- poverty, chastity --
4 obedience is not our rule, either. Even when Yogananda put
5 me in charge of the monks, which he did, I never asked for
6 their obedience; I asked for their voluntary cooperation.
7 So we have that at Ananda also.
8 Q. Can I stop you right there?
9 A. Voluntary cooperation.
10 Q. No, you said something I was very interested in.
11 You said, "even when Yogananda put me in charge of
12 the monks" --
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. -- "I asked for their voluntary cooperation" --
15 A. Correct.
16 Q. -- not their obedience.
17 A. Uh-huh. In other words, I would have had --
18 Q. But please, Mr. Walters. But Yogananda was asking
19 for obedience.
20 MR. PARSONS: That misstates the testimony.
21 Do you have a question you'd like to ask the
23 MR. FLYNN: Q. Yes. Isn't it true that Yogananda
24 was asking for obedience? So why would you be interjecting
25 yourself and saying you were asking for voluntary
2 MR. PARSONS: That's a compound question. Let's
3 break it down into parts.
4 MR. FLYNN: Q. All right. Between 1948 and 1955
5 -- maybe I'm confused -- you were -- you considered
6 Yogananda to be your guru. And you would obey him. True?
7 Can you answer "yes" or "no"?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And if Yogananda said to do something, because he
10 said it, you did it.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And then he put you in charge of the monks, and
13 you kind of changed that rule a little bit.
14 A. No.
15 MR. PARSONS: Well, is that -- he's restating what
16 he seems to remember your testimony to be.
17 Wait till he's asked you a question.
18 MR. FLYNN: Q. Right. You didn't change the
20 A. No.
21 Q. Did you ask the monks to obey Yogananda?
22 A. I didn't have to.
23 Q. They already knew to do that?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. So you didn't even have to ask them for their
1 voluntary cooperation, because they obeyed Yogananda, not
3 A. May I give an example?
4 In an Army, you've got the general, but you've got
5 captains. And in matters of where the policy is already
6 established, the captain has to make it happen, so you obey
7 the captain. But you understand in obeying the captain that
8 you're obeying the general.
9 Q. So -- okay, I get it. So it was like a
10 military --
11 A. Except that it's not military.
12 Q. -- scale of leadership.
13 A. It could be comparable. Don't bring it to the
14 point of saying it's like a military in the sense of being
15 militaristic or that. It wasn't.
16 But when spiritual guidance was concerned, he gave
17 it. When -- my decision or suggestion that we meditate at 7
18 in the morning instead of 6:30, or vice versa, that would be
19 for me to do, under his guidance, and always under his
21 Q. And then after he died, whoever his successor
22 was, you did things under their guidance and direction?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And who was it -- was this person Daya Mata his
25 immediate successor?
1 A. No, there was the third. There was another --
2 James Lynn, his name was. He was the president. But he
3 only lived for a year.
4 Q. And did you obey him?
5 A. Was it a year? It was 2 years.
6 Q. Did you obey him?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And then when this person Daya Mata took over, you
9 obeyed her?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. So when you took that vow in 1955 to obey --
12 according to a particular --
13 A. Daya Mata.
14 Q. -- Daya Mata, according to a particular statement,
15 did you vow to obey this organization called SRF --
16 MR. PARSONS: Objection.
17 MR. FLYNN: Q. -- in the statement you took?
18 MR. PARSONS: Okay. Objection. It's been asked
19 and answered. He's already testified on is that.
20 Let's move on to something that has some meaning
21 in the case.
22 MR. FLYNN: Oh, I -- Mr. Parsons, I believe this
23 all has very significant meaning, as I believe you will
25 THE WITNESS: I've answered it, though.
1 MR. FLYNN: Q. Can you just give me another --
2 indulge me again, Mr. Walters. Can you answer that
4 Did you vow in this specific statement that you
5 took at the time to obey SRF?
6 A. I vowed to obey Yogananda's living representative.
7 Q. Who was this person Daya Mata. Okay.
8 Do you happen to have that language in that vow or
9 those vows that you took in 1955?
10 A. I must have.
11 Q. Okay. We'd ask that that be produced.
12 Now, in 1962, apparently you had some differences
13 with these people, or with this organization. Is that
15 A. Yes -- no, it's not. They had differences with
17 Q. All right. What differences did they have with
19 A. Do I have to go into this entire long story of my
20 separation? It seems irrelevant to the present case.
21 Q. Well, you put it in your declaration in part,
22 so --
23 A. I did?
24 Q. Which you filed in this lawsuit.
25 A. That's right, okay.
1 Well, if you want it short --
2 MR. PARSONS: Let me state for the record --
3 MR. FLYNN: Please. Your objections should be
4 short, concise, succinct, and not designed to illuminate a
5 potential answer for the witness, Mr. Parsons, as you know
6 under the Rules.
7 MR. PARSONS: It would have been a lot quicker and
8 shorter if you'd just let me state it.
9 MR. STILLMAN: Well is there an objection, a legal
11 MR. PARSONS: Yes.
12 MR. FLYNN: Is there an objection, a legal
13 objection to the question?
14 MR. PARSONS: Are you done?
15 I'm going to object to the extent that the
16 question calls for this witness to disclose personal,
17 confidential matters that he feels are a matter of privacy.
18 I will permit the witness to answer to the extent
19 that it requires him to disclose things which have already
20 been disclosed in his declaration, but which he feels are
21 not personal and confidential.
22 MR. FLYNN: I object to that. It's -- that's just
23 obstruction, there's no such recognized legal privilege.
24 THE WITNESS: I'll answer both of you. I'll
25 answer both of you. There's nothing private about it. I've
1 made a public declaration about it. I've always been open
2 about it.
3 And it's more the length of it, that I could give
4 the long story, and it would take us all day, wasting time,
5 money, and getting nowhere.
6 It's in a number of documents, including one
7 called "My Separation from SRF," which I would like to
8 recommend you read, and you can introduce as much of it as
9 you like into the testimony.
10 MR. FLYNN: Q. Well, let's take your short
11 version then.
12 What happened between you and this organization?
13 A. The short version was, I was the only man on the
14 board of directors, and I didn't see things the way the
15 women did.
16 I wanted to spread the work and help others to
17 know it. They were trying to protect the work.
18 They got rid of me because they were afraid of the
19 energy I was putting out, and in their words, said that if
20 we keep him, in 15 years he'll be strong enough to divide
21 the work, which I never intended to do.
22 But they were afraid, and I would say jealous, of
23 my success.
24 Q. What success were you having that they were
25 jealous of?
1 A. I was having success in India lecturing to many
2 thousands of people, and -- that's enough.
3 Q. You were having success in India lecturing to many
4 thousands of people.
5 What other success were you having that they were
6 jealous of?
7 A. I was extremely popular.
8 Q. You were extremely popular. With who?
9 A. With the people I lectured to, with the people who
10 knew me. Even now in India they still talk about me.
11 Q. Can I stop you right there?
12 A. What they wanted, if I may continue --
13 Q. Go ahead.
14 A. -- was somebody who didn't do anything without
15 writing for approval from the board of directors and waiting
16 6 months. And I felt that I needed to act with the freedom
17 that a person on the scene has to have.
18 This is something that people have in
19 organizations, especially when the means of communication
20 was letters, as they were in those days.
21 As soon as I found out they didn't want what I
22 did, then I said, okay, I won't do it.
23 I never resisted or rebelled or disobeyed, but I
24 did presume that this is what the work needed, and this is
25 how to build it. They didn't want that. They wanted
1 somebody who never did anything without their approval.
2 When they told me that's what they wanted, then
3 that's what I tried to do. But by then, they were convinced
4 that I never would anyway.
5 Q. You made a statement, "even now in India they
6 still talk about me."
7 A. They.
8 Q. Who's they?
9 A. Many people. That's all I can say. When you say
10 they, you presumably mean more than ten, but it's all I can
11 really say.
12 Q. But you see Mr. Walters, the problem is, I didn't
13 say "they," you did.
14 A. And I'm saying what I meant by that. Many people.
15 Q. How do you know that?
16 A. Because I've been there, because they've written
17 to me, because they've talked to friends of mine, and so on.
18 Q. Now, you made a statement earlier that you wanted
19 to expand the work, and they, meaning these SRF folks,
20 didn't want to.
21 Do you recall that a moment ago?
22 A. No. I -- if -- I didn't -- I was trying to give
23 the short answer.
24 Yogananda wasn't well-known in India. I wanted
25 people to know about him. There were -- I mean, if you
1 really need this, I can tell you. The people --
2 Q. You see, if you could answer my precise question.
3 Did you state 2 or 3 minutes ago, they, meaning
4 these SRF people, didn't want to expand the work, but I
5 wanted to?
6 A. No --
7 Q. Did you make that statement, sir?
8 MR. PARSONS: I'm going to object to that. The
9 record speaks for itself. You can have the court reporter
10 read it back. I don't see any reason to ask the witness
11 what he said before.
12 Let's have it read back if you want to know what
13 he said.
14 MR. FLYNN: First of all, are you instructing the
15 witness not to answer my question?
16 MR. PARSONS: I will instruct the witness not to
18 MR. FLYNN: That's specifically obstructionist on
19 a very -- with no grounds cited, on a very important issue
20 in this lawsuit -- to wit, credibility -- which I am
21 entitled to probe into, Mr. Parsons. You are obstructing
22 the deposition.
23 Secondly, Mr. Walters made a statement that I
24 believe he is now attempting to retract. His retraction of
25 statements he's made in public, particularly regarding
1 issues relating to this lawsuit, is a subject of this
3 Thirdly, Mr. --
4 THE WITNESS: What was the subject of this
5 lawsuit? Say it again?
6 MR. FLYNN: -- Mr. Walters -- your contradictory
7 statements, made in public and made in private.
8 Thirdly, Mr. Walters may have an excuse for a
9 contradictory statement. You are blocking my effort to find
10 out what that potential excuse could be.
11 And I'm not going to suggest to you what they are,
12 but they could involve any psychological impediment he's
13 under, any medication impediment that he's under, which I
14 would be entitled to probe into, all of which you have now
15 blocked off.
16 And the record will so reflect.
17 Q. Now, Mr. Walters --
18 A. Excuse me, I have to go to the bathroom. I'll be
19 right back.
20 MR. PARSONS: Let's take a break.
21 THE VIDEO OPERATOR: Mr. Flynn? Counselor, should
22 we go off the record or stay on the record?
23 MR. FLYNN: Let's stay on the record. Leave the
24 video on.
25 MR. STILLMAN: Just remember the mike's on.
1 MR. FLYNN: We're off the written record.
2 (Discussion off the record.)
3 MR. FLYNN: Okay. We're back on the written
4 record. We've been on the video record.
5 Now, Mr. Walters, you are also referred to as
7 A. I was referred to as that. Now it's more like a
8 nickname. Swamy has many meanings. It can be husband in
9 India, even. So it's not a formal swamy. But it's a
10 nickname. People call me that.
11 Q. A nickname?
12 A. Yes. In other words, they'd known me by that name
13 for many years, so they just kept calling me that.
14 Q. Why had they known you for many years?
15 A. Because I was a swamy.
16 Q. You were a swamy and stopped being a swamy?
17 A. Yes, that's what I told you.
18 Q. When Daya Mata dispensed you of your four vows --
19 poverty, chastity, loyalty and obedience -- you stopped
20 being a swamy.
21 MR. PARSONS: Is that a question?
22 MR. FLYNN: Q. Is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Between 1955 and 1985, you were a swamy.
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. I believe you've written, and correct me if I'm
2 wrong, that being a swamy means being celibate. Is that
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Now, you considered Yogananda to be your guru.
6 Did you consider the successors to Yogananda -- to wit, this
7 person Daya Mata -- to be your guru?
8 A. No.
9 Q. And the definition of the term "guru" again, in
10 the monastic order that you took your vows in in 1955, means
11 what, Mr. Walters?
12 A. The same as it meant before I took my vows.
13 Q. Which is what?
14 A. That I, through his example and through his
15 inspiration, hope to be introduced to God.
16 Q. Can you give me a definition -- you've written
17 extensively, have you not?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. How many books have you written?
20 A. I think it's about 63.
21 Q. 63 books.
22 A. I think.
23 Q. And articles. How many articles have you written?
24 A. Oh, I have no idea. Many.
25 Q. Hundreds?
1 A. Possibly. I really don't know.
2 Q. Over a hundred or less than a hundred?
3 A. I cannot say. I don't know. I've been teaching
4 now for 46 years. That's a long time. Enough time to write
5 quite a lot. But how many I've written, I really don't know.
6 Q. 46 years teaching. What have you been teaching in
7 those 46 years?
8 A. The teachings of Yogananda.
9 Q. Have you been teaching the teachings of Kriyananda
10 or the teachings of Yogananda?
11 A. Yogananda.
12 Q. Now, I believe you still haven't given me the
13 definition of the word "guru" in the monastic order that you
14 took the vows in.
15 Can you give me a definition?
16 A. Definition of guru would be apart from the
17 monastic order. It's a spiritual thing. Householders were
18 disciples, nonmonastics were disciples.
19 Disciples of a guru -- I mean, a guru is one who
20 has realized God and helps others to realize him by
21 teaching, by example, by inspiration.
22 Q. Yogananda was a guru?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Yogananda was your guru?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And you swore to obey Yogananda and his successors?
2 MR. PARSONS: Objection. It misstates the
3 testimony; it's been asked and answered.
4 I'm instructing the witness not to answer that
5 question. Let's move on.
6 MR. FLYNN: Q. Now, in 1962, you separated from
7 SRF, but you still remained a swamy. Is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Now, in 1962, when you separated from SRF, did you
10 quit or did they, in effect, fire you?
11 A. Fired me.
12 Q. And the reason they fired you -- let's do this
13 very cogently, if we can. I'd like to enumerate them.
14 The reason they fired you is, one, they wanted to
15 protect, and you wanted to expand.
16 A. This is the question that I wanted to refine.
17 Q. Can we say it cogently?
18 Did you say basically you wanted to expand
19 Yogananda's teachings, and they wanted to protect them?
20 A. I wanted to refine that statement, not retract it.
21 Q. What refinement did you want to give to that
23 A. They wanted to expand it by working on the office
24 and sending out lessons.
25 I wanted -- they were -- well, I'll try to keep it
1 brief. You see, my problem is not that I'm trying to hide.
2 I'm trying to -- I'm trying not to take an hour describing
3 something that I consider irrelevant.
4 The people in India were deadbeats. They weren't
5 doing anything for the work. The only way that I could see
6 to build the work was to start elsewhere, get a new group of
7 people, come back with that new group, and revivify that
8 energy at the headquarters.
9 I did this with Daya Mata's permission. But the
10 other directors, when they found out that I was actually
11 doing something in New Delhi as opposed to Calcutta, they
12 began to think I was trying to separate the work. I was
14 That was the effort. I was trying to bring life
15 to it, and they were trying to just send out lessons from
16 the headquarters office and do the same kind of asleep
17 activity, you might say, lack of activity, that had been
18 going on for 40 years.
19 Q. Now, when you say "deadbeats," you're talking of
20 people in the SRF organization as deadbeats?
21 A. In India. In India.
22 Q. In India. And these people had been deadbeats
23 under Yogananda when he was alive for the prior 40 years?
24 A. Yes, I would say so.
25 Q. And even though thee people were acceptable to
1 Yogananda, they weren't acceptable to you?
2 A. I don't think they were acceptable to him. There
3 was nothing he could do about it. I was to go with him
4 there to help revive it.
5 Q. Well, he was dead --
6 A. That was in 1950, 1951. And again in '52, but
7 then he died.
8 Q. Well, when you were over there and got relieved of
9 command, so to speak, that was later; right? That was like
10 '58 to '62?
11 A. '62.
12 Q. So Yogananda had been dead for 10 years at that
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Now, we'll accept that answer that you just gave
16 as answer number one.
17 Are there any other reasons that they fired you?
18 A. I answered it by saying they were afraid of my
19 energy. I think they felt I was too independent.
20 In other words, I had creative ideas. They didn't
21 want somebody with creative ideas, and said as much.
22 Q. Let's just address that for a moment. Let's take
23 that through history just for the moment.
24 How many people in your organization at the
25 current time, roughly?
1 A. At the current time? Well, I don't know. But if
2 you take into account all our different communities and so
3 on, I would estimate about 800.
4 Q. Members?
5 A. Yes. Resident members. That probably includes
6 children. I'm not really up on the figures.
7 Q. And how many members in their organization at the
8 present time?
9 A. I can --
10 MR. PARSONS: I have an objection as to the
11 definition of "member." And I haven't found any foundation,
12 haven't heard any foundation, this witness can even testify
13 as to how many members they have.
14 I'll certainly, however, let the witness testify
15 to the extent he knows they're members.
16 THE WITNESS: It would be a presumption on my
17 part. I really don't know.
18 MR. FLYNN: Q. Do you have a guesstimate?
19 MR. PARSONS: Same objection. I'll let him
21 THE WITNESS: Yes. I would estimate 20,000.
22 Mind you, when I say members of their
23 organization, there's no clear definition of "member." When
24 you speak of members of our organization, there's no clear
25 definition of what a member is.
1 I talked of resident members, but there are many
3 MR. FLYNN: Q. I was just trying to put it in the
4 context of these SRF people being afraid of your energy, too
5 independent, and didn't want to create.
6 And then I see that they ended up with, according
7 to your own testimony, with about 20,000 members, and you
8 ended up with about 800, when they were creating and you
9 were creating alongside each other.
10 Is that basically what happened?
11 A. Well, they did have a h