Journeys: Marsha Donner


Date: March 27, 2001
Email: None



This Journeys entry originally appeared as a post on Forum 5, and has been printed here by Marsha's permission.

thankyou forum Posters for your humanity. I have felt such heart and wisdom and connection with you. Thankyou for your persistence, your availability to those who are beginning their "rites of passage" to claim their own power. It takes courage. I did not have support at that time, mid 80ís, and I believe if I could have fully greived the loss... loss of my whole Idenity when i left m and k. I wouldnít have been angry for so long afterward. (anger covers alot of the pain it seems to me) Now, I am 52, playing with a full deck and feel very happy to be alive. I have no regrets. I have been reading the Forum since Michael Donner posted, this will be my one and only post. I wanted to contribute because i appreciate the effort you are all making. It generally feels responsible, honest with good laughs to boot.

So I will share a few insights, nothing really new but just to support the forum and I believe to free my self up more of any m residue. Also because i will feel less like a voyeur. The beginning of my extrication really began after a year and a half of being the servant of the servantís in Miami Beach. (I had previously lived in Portand and Eugene - hi carol) Semi-close. Some fun, lots of laughs, tons of work, no recognition and burn-out ...plus guilt cause i was sneaking into mikes room everynight... second hand Darshan experience you know!

I lived amonst a circle of exhausted, fearfull and confused young people, very sincere but way to stressed to be conscious of anyone but themselves and getting some form of attention from m. The exclusion game was a big one for me. not being invited to parties-trying to get a glimpse, to feel special. (how embarrassingly pathetic, but certainly socially acceptable in this circle, even encouraged.) After a few years of therapy, unraveling and relaxation, those years seem crazy and also perhaps normal for adocesents who lived through the 60's where all our heros were killed and nixon became pres.

Itís my observation that m fit perfectly into my family scenerio. My dad was not around much , he did not know how to connect with me, he was at times mean and violent. M was the same, not a very nice boy, did not seem to know how to connect (even as he became a young adult) he often seemed to be entertained by others' misery, and was abusive (verbally abusive, and even physically... I remember when Mike blissfully recounted how M kicked him in the balls.)

There were 2 incidences that i would like to convey that cracked my tightly wound belief system around m and k.

first one: I was finally invited to become an instructor, part time in 85-86. M had basically totally ignored me up until this conference, i was living with mike donner and I kept finding myself in situations where i was treated like i didn't exist and it was not a spiritual experience. It was like I did not exisit. I was gaining enough sense of self at that point to realize that i perhaps deserved a bit of respect. duh! Well at the conference I had a very strange experience. m felt like we need a k review so Loring baker was going to teach us how to do the techniques.

But I thought ... what.. are you kidding me, I have been faithfully doing this thing for 12 years or so and i even had 2 or 3 significant experiences. I know how to do this simple thing. well i think (rationaliztion covering up discomfort at questioning m) maybe there is something new, something that will really give me a great meditation.

So here comes Loring whom i know, he looks at me with these snakey blank eyes and says in a monotone voice "put the pads of your thumbs here", etc. It was absolutely the same thing i had been doing day after day for years. I suddenly felt weird and tried to connect with him. I said, "loring i know how to do this (nervous giggle) your kidding... right."...and then he restates exactly what he had just said .. "put the pads of your thumbs here", etc.

he was so cold, like a robot. well i felt punched in the stomach. Again that feeling of hey where is the respect for me, i am not stupid, i have been loyal for years, this is not what k is all about, putting thumbs in your ears just right? Where is the connection. I began to unravel right then and there. I talked to others but they kind of had the same snakey look except for the cynics like Mike and his buddies who were used to this stuff.

But i think i was beginning to see how i acted to others when they had doubts or were in their mind and it was not right. It felt cold. Funny little thing that became huge for me. I quit the instructor scene the day i got the call that i could be one. How we happen to unravel is so unique to each of us. for me I began to really see mís flaws and I began to allow myself to feel the feelings of hurt, disgust, loss. I guess i could go on and on but it seems everyone will see what is important for them as they individuate, as the system failsthem. It is quite an amazing process. it can be scary. but oh so worth it.

Grief struck me hard. i cried for a long time. Michael was on the edge also but this was a rites of passage for me, I had to do it alone. Our culture is not good at this sort of thing, honoring grief, so there was no room for me in the premie world. It was like being shunned, who would I talk to, cry to, as I told my revelation that m was a man and not a very nice one at that. It was a tough time for both of us. We did not do the break in a very conscious manner, it was strange for a few years.

So good job Forum. Please do consider a counseling site. I made it and i have appreciation for my resiliency and a trust to make choices that will further my opening to compassion and wisdom. It is a natural human process of growing up and i feel very tender towards all who are or have embarked on this journey.

The other incident that deeply affected me was in regards to a friend that disclosed how she felt greatly harmed by m. I would say that she felt raped, I will say that i felt it was close to rape and if it felt that horrible then it was. i will also say it was not violent physically but mentally and emotionally it was. I will also say that it was power over someone, a clear abuse of power from one who is narssisstic to extremes over one who felt powerless.

I will not write any details or answer questions regarding this incident because it is not my story, Only the effect it had on me. I felt a real sense of helplessness after i heard her story, of her abuse and then her long road to recovery. I told all the premies i could about it. i wonder what premies do to justify this kind of behavior in someone they profess to love. Any excuse i gave to m because of his lousy upbringing or that he was just a kid .or the sex, power, guru trip, whatever, could no longer be justified. Abuse (sexual/psychological/emotional) is not ok with me.

I feel anger, now when i imagine the pain of this woman, and i feel responsible to encourage those who hear this reality check regarding m that they disengage and stop supporting him. he does not practice what he preaches. H e is an energy suck. The sooner he has no devotees the sooner he will no longer be guru. Of course there are many accounts of his weak character. It would be a better road to recovery for him if his premies really let him go.

Thankyou again and namaste.
marsha ( fish mays) donner

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