Holy Hell (2016) Movie Script

To come to this day,
after such long journey,
Where there's no longer
a journey left.
Where you can finally merge
with the beloved.
I am rolling.
My name is Will.
I always wanted to know,
why am I here?
What is the point?
How do I live a meaningful life?
I wanted to know everything.
Hasn't everybody asked
themselves these questions?
The truth about the mystery of
the universe.
I went to my great grandmother's
open casket when I was four
and became fascinated
by the concept of life and death.
I was raised catholic.
I was even an altar boy.
I was quite fascinated
by all of it.
Jesus carries the cross.
They're nailing him to the cross.
They're all at point bloody, and...
I started making movies
when I was a kid.
I found an eight
millimeter camera.
At first there were just fun
and blowing things up.
I had grown up pretty lucky.
But as a kid, nobody seemed
very content or happy to me.
So I decided
there was something deeper,
a secret that nobody
seemed to know.
But then I went
to college and I started
to use film as a way
to explore the meaning of life...
To explore my world.
But by the time I finished film school,
I wasn't closer to knowing who I was,
what I wanted,
where I was going,
and most importantly, why.
I moved back home after college.
My mother was very disturbed
to find out that I was gay,
and she told me to get the hell
out of the house, and go support myself.
This is what led me
to my huge adventure.
This is my story
about what happened to me
on my 22-year search
for the truth.
[ Hooked on a Feeling
by Blue Swede]
I can't stop this feeling
Deep inside of me
You just don't realize
What you do to me
When you hold me
In your arms so tight
You let me know
Everything's all right
Hooked on a feeling
It was the middle of the '80s
and the yuppie generation.
We were all searching
for something different.
This was not my path.
I had got accepted
into grad school.
I was going to get a Ph.D.
in child psychology
and I had my whole
life planned out.
And then I met
some of these people.
They were so alive,
living from their heart,
and playing
and jumping
in ice cold rivers,
and hiking through
the forest at night,
and oh, my God,
I want me some of that.
Some of them were
some of the smartest,
most beautiful people
I had ever met in my life.
We started it.
This is what we wanted.
It was our little utopia
in the middle of this big, giant city.
you were being fed,
like, your soul was being fed
with love and with
inspiration and awe.
I wanted everybody,
everybody in the world,
to experience this.
I can remember feeling
so fulfilled.
I said, "Dad, I want to give
my life to God."
And he was on the next
flight out there,
to come get me.
The people
that were there were looking
for spirituality,
but all of a sudden,
you had a built-in family.
- [ Alive by Cabot Budlong]
- On earth this day
Livin' on earth
Well, what more can I say?
What would you like
to surrender right now?
And the person
in the middle will say
whatever they are surrendering.
bad words...
Attachments to money...
and to sex.
...this person's body,
we take away your attachment.
You're already through the air,
so throw it away.
I fell into a group of the most
amazing people I'd ever met.
It was my sister, Amy,
who first told me about her friends,
who called themselves
the Buddhafield.
People ask me all the time,
"How did you end up there?"
I was raised
in Catholic school, and...
I always had
a lot of questions for the nuns.
When I would go home
and tell my mom what I asked,
she would say
you can't ask them that.
And I'm, like,
no, I want to know.
I wanted to know myself
beyond the superficiality
of the world that I was living in.
Life can't be just this thing
where you just live and work and die.
There's gotta be
something more.
I grew up with a family
of really expressive,
artistic hippie-type characters.
I also had
no guidance growing up.
Living in Chicago, where I grew up
in the streets, was very violent.
And when it came
to the Buddhafield,
not really knowing
what real love was,
that's what I started
to feel, like, really deeply.
I always had this yearning
to know really why we're here.
I grew up with a very,
uh, fundamentalist, uh,
fire and brimstone church
with the fear of God and all.
My mom kicked me out
of the house when I was 15,
so yeah, I was
looking for stability.
When I came to the group,
it felt like,
okay, this is going
to be for life.
It was like a marriage.
I grew up with a real
problem with authority...
major authority problem.
Really hasn't changed much,
actually, I have to tell you truthfully.
When I was very, very young,
I wanted to be a scientist,
then I wanted
to be an artist.
And there was always
a running theme through it
that I wanted
to be enlightened.
I felt very lost,
and I felt empty,
like there was
something missing.
As a child, I mean, there was
a lot of stuff going on in my family.
Suicide attempts
every couple months,
a lot of abuse, um...
I wanted to be a politician.
I wanted freedom.
I wanted freedom
somehow from this self.
We were letting go of our minds.
We were dropping our egos.
I just started experiencing
a higher part of myself
that was beyond
anything that I'd known.
And it was the teacher who was
guiding us every step of the way.
The first time I met
the teacher was
at one of the Buddhafield's
weekly meetings
in West Hollywood
called Sat Sang.
I was told
his name was Michel.
He just was soft, and his energy was
just, um, still, you know.
And I just thought wow,
what a beautiful man.
If you think of tomorrow,
you're unhappy.
If you think of the past,
you can become miserable.
And happiness is
wherever you are.
Wherever you are is
where happiness is.
He spoke as if he had
gone into the cosmos and come back,
and was here to tell us
about it and take us there.
Have you made contact
with the eternal,
or are you still obsessed
with the momentary?
When are you going
to wake up?
When are you going
to realize what you're doing
with this precious energy,
with this precious opportunity?
He told us he had a master
that had led him
to a great spiritual awakening.
You speak around here
and you listen to what is said to you
and you'll be liberated.
That much I can tell you.
I wanted to have
a spiritual teacher
who could teach me
how to be free.
I wanted a mentor.
I wanted somebody
who was going to guide me.
They do this in India
all the time. There's gurus there.
This is just the modern-day
version of that in America.
It's so easy to be in love
It's so easy to be in love
He was contemporary.
He wasn't some little old man
with a gray beard
sitting in a dhoti.
He was wearing speedos
and Ray-Bans, you know,
and he was dancing, and he was doing,
you know, contemporary music.
He spoke four or five languages.
He was amazingly
humorous, witty...
Very playful, like a child.
He could do something like, oh, my God,
I can't believe you just did that.
He could dance.
He was artistic.
He was all those things
we all wanted to be.
He was unlike anyone
I'd ever met before.
He encouraged me
to drop all my ideas
of what I thought
I was supposed to be.
I finally felt
like I was on the right path.
I attended every meeting,
every group outing we would take,
and even went to Michel's
weekly individual
hypnotherapy sessions
called Cleansings.
I really felt like something
important was happening in my life.
- Namaste.
- Namaste.
Well, look who arrived.
What's Holy Company doing?
I really fell in love with...
other people first.
What are you doing?
We were together 24/7.
We lived together,
we ate together, played together.
Everybody that I knew was
in the Buddhafield.
My circle, my family,
was the Buddhafield.
I lived in a house
with about eight people.
It was warm and safe.
Nobody ever went hungry.
Nobody was ever
gonna be homeless.
You always had a place.
Everyone was supporting each other
with helping with food,
helping with cooking.
It was-- It was so idyllic.
I didn't drink caffeine,
I didn't drink a glass of wine.
I mean, I can't imagine
living any cleaner.
It was really advocated
that we exercise and take care of ourselves.
This was a lifestyle.
We lived in houses,
we paid our own rent.
We had jobs.
I did personal training.
I owned my own business.
I was very successful
with money.
If I had a job,
obviously, my money went
toward my rent and my groceries,
but whatever needed
to be bought or built,
we all pitched in and paid for it.
- Need some help.
- Another example of service happening.
Service was an action you did selflessly.
It was just for others, for God.
I loved service.
I calculated and I did service
40 hours a week, plus worked.
We started doing service
for a couple of quadraplegics
that were involved in the group,
and helping them through their day.
It made me feel like...
like I had a purpose.
By the time I was in my late 20s,
I had taken on the role
of the group's
de facto filmmaker.
That would be
your first committment...
to dedicate your life
to certain knowing
and your spiritual master's
work on this earth.
My films were like a way
of giving back to the group.
They were the perfect medium
for sharing Michel's teachings.
I even directed
a commercial for Wings,
a hair product made
by some members of the group.
The profits we earned helped fund
the Buddhafield and the master's travels.
There was enough support
within the group
for me to do what I wanted:
capture our experiences
and share Michel's message of love.
We used to joke,
even in the early days,
if this was a cult,
at least it was a really good cult.
One of the first people I wanted
to help bring into the group
was my middle sister, Lori.
My brother and sister said
you have to come up here.
It's so beautiful. You'll get
all the healing you need, and
heal from your
eating disorder,
and heal
from your rape trauma.
I knew I needed healing.
I mean,
I knew I was messed up.
That's something
I've always known about myself.
We supported Will, Amy, and Lori
to do whatever it is they wanted to do.
If they needed more answers,
my husband and I thought we had
worked to give them those answers,
but apparently, we didn't do enough.
They needed something that they
weren't getting.
Something happened.
Something deep in me in that moment said
I will never leave this.
One day, I asked someone to ask
if there was anything I could do for him.
It sounds so small.
He said you can make me
a fruit salad every morning.
So I would go to the store and I would
buy the most beautiful fruit I could find,
and I started carving
Buddhas out of papaya.
I carved the last supper out of fruit.
I would spend hours,
and it was within my being
I was making a fruit salad for God.
One day, I came home and my roommate,
who was very closely serving the master,
was taking one of my fruit salads
and sliding it into a blender
and making a smoothie,
and I was just like...
And I kept making those fruit salads,
even though I knew he wasn't eating them,
because there was no other way
that I could give him anything.
Shakti is the transference of energy
from the master to the disciple.
We'd just leave there so blissed out
and high-- without drugs.
My body started convulsing
and all these kinds of things
kind of started happening.
When he touched me,
I was no longer myself.
There was a profound
experience where I felt a current,
where I felt like, oh,
there's electricity happening.
And I see this sort of, like,
flashing light, like-- like lightning,
sound so loud,
like a jet airplane.
It's pretty addictive.
I was experiencing
an LSD-like state.
Colors were moving around him.
There was a phenomenon
attached to this, now.
It's not just these good
feelings I'm having.
Now there's this, like,
flashing light happening inside me.
More than shakti,
there was a greater experience
that only Michel
could reveal to us.
It was the ultimate
step we needed
to take us to enlightenment.
We were told, uh, that he would have
a day set aside where we could come
and ask him for the direct
experience of God,
and he called it the Knowing.
The Knowing was based on this book
called the Bhagavad Gita.
It's this Hindu book
where Krishna reveals the--
the direct experience of God
to his disciple, Arjuna.
I was like, yes,
that resonated with me.
I was like, I knew,
I knew it was possible.
The Knowing was
the realization
of being able to see
and hear and taste God.
You could only comprehend
what it means
to finally have God be revealed
to you in His purest form, finally.
That was
something that I
felt like I had been looking for
my entire life up to that point.
I had gone to school, I had a degree,
I had a great job, I was engaged,
and yet, when this happened,
it was like,
all of that meant nothing.
So who wants to ask
for the Knowing today?
One of the things that made
the Knowing so intriguing
was that not everyone was going
to be able to receive it.
I wanted what I thought he had.
I wanted the Knowing.
I wanted this promise of enlightenment.
A ceremony would occur
over the course of several days,
where individuals were able to ask
if they were ready for the Knowing.
Those chosen would receive
the experience of God.
He said you have to give
everything up and I will know,
because you will be asked before
you receive this experience.
I'll know if you're telling
the truth or not.
So I was like, I better really do
some soul searching.
As devoted as I was,
I was still nervous
that he wouldn't think I was ready.
One night,
he spoke to me alone.
He had something
he needed to tell me.
He said that he had been up
all night fighting with God,
fighting for my life.
I was fated to have
a terrible accident.
I was supposed to die.
He said I needed to follow his guidance
and I would be okay.
It was so hard to believe,
but I trusted him.
The very next day, I would find out
if I received the Knowing.
This day was going
to meet God, okay?
Not the president,
not Brad Pitt.
This was God.
So you didn't want
to take this lightly.
We were up in the woods,
and he looks into your eyes
with, like, you know, this open-eyed
meditation that's so overwhelming.
And he said, "What do you want?"
And I told him that I wanted
to have the Knowing revealed to me.
He said, "hmm,"
but it was very doubtful.
He was really playing
with that for me.
He said, "Bow down,"
and I did,
and he said, "You will receive the Knowing,
and you will know God directly."
And he said,
"I think you're ready for it."
Something in me changed,
and literally, for three days,
I thought I was on an acid trip.
And I-I felt atoms,
and I saw things,
and I kept checking myself,
like, wow, is this real?
And every time I connect
to the light, I'm just...
I'm so amazed.
It's not like
there's just a light.
There's, like, colors,
and patterns, and they keep changing.
I mean, there's, like,
these spinning checkerboards.
The brightest little dots,
and each one is a little rainbow.
Then these little electrons come
flying all over the place.
I wasn't trusted to have
the Knowing revealed to me.
Basically, he'd said,
"Not this time, Emiliana.
"I think
you're not quite ready, yet."
My sister had been there
for six years working like a slave.
I mean, like a slave.
Of course
it made me feel inadequate.
It's like, all I ever wanted was to attain
this merging into God and disappearing.
I was looking around at people
who had been there, like,
no way as long as me.
Everything was always explained off
by being, "they're just older souls."
So it was really hard.
He just strung her along.
Strung her along.
It was especially hard for me
when my brother got the Knowing and I didn't.
The Knowing was
finally shown to me,
and it wasn't
what I was expecting.
I saw light and heard sound.
There was no denying the beauty
I was experiencing.
But I was overwhelmed
that too much was being asked of me,
and I was getting in too deep.
This is the real drunk me.
Drunk with the Divine.
Hey, what's happening here could be
put in a history book...
I would say.
Fifty years from now,
they will say,
"And there was a time
where this master work understand
"as old as the time...
he got..."
They were not knowing.
They cannot be put this
in history books.
And that this is
the real thing that counts.
I loved doing service,
and eventually,
Michel pulled me in close
to do service for him directly.
I was always told
it was an honor to serve him,
and I felt privileged.
I could ask him anything
and he became very accessible to me.
I started finding out
details about his life.
In addition to being an actor,
he had been a dancer in the Oakland ballet.
He danced and worked out constantly.
I became one of the people
who massaged him,
and gave him adjustments...
what we called body workers.
Eventually, I moved into the apartment
next door to his with Phillipe,
and we transformed our living room
into a dance studio for his use.
I am a very devotional person.
I love to honor,
and so I started putting
all of that energy into him.
He said, "You're just
using me as an excuse.
"We all have excuses.
"People bow to the buddha,
people bow to Jesus,
"and you're using me as that.
"I'm not anything."
And we were feeling special,
and important, and loved, and supported.
We were constantly
telling him how much
we loved him and
how amazing he was,
and how, you know,
we couldn't live without him, and...
really, 150 or however many people
telling you that all day, every day,
that's pretty powerful.
Michel was very disciplined,
and ballet was
a daily ritual for him.
And it became ours, too.
I loved it. I was in heaven.
It was my favorite thing we did,
and 90% of the rest
of the people hated it.
Dance was living hell.
Drop it, right now.
You don't have time for this bullshit.
Do that pass again.
And do it right.
It was like going
through school again.
You have to know this.
We have twice ... or things to remember.
I remember people crying in that class.
It was intense.
It's tough love.
He's giving them tough love.
Have you ever seen
anything more silly
than two people having sex?
Yeah. Yeah.
He was very clear with me
to abstain from having sex.
I couldn't even have
a relationship in the group.
He said it was too dangerous
and that my energy needed to rise.
What happens during sexual orgasm,
a little death.
One who has experienced
the orgasm of meditation,
that's the greatest orgasm.
What I remember him saying was
basically that sex was a low energy.
Didn't have sex for three years.
The ones that had been there
a long time had gotten way over it.
It was like,
it became the Booty-field.
After a while, it was like this
spiritual haven of beautiful people that...
"Well, we don't have sex.
We don't have--"
In fact,
everybody's fucking everybody,
but it was on the--
on the down-low.
He took me traveling with him
and a few other helpers.
Don't get the camera wet.
Of course, in addition
to all the fun and meditation,
we have our regular duties,
serving Michel.
I was his masseur,
and I was on call, 24/7.
I had never felt
so good in my life.
Healthy, loving, and loved.
I did have my doubts,
but I worked hard to overcome them.
To be a person is
to be a mask.
And you never know who you're
talking to behind the mask.
The real person is
somewhere inside that mask.
You had to stand
naked in front of God
as he's made you
in your body of light.
The master only represents God
on the earth,
and if you can stand
naked in front of your master,
you can stand naked
in front of your God.
Know that.
So the teacher was
a hypnotherapist,
and he would invite me in for therapy,
which he called the Cleansing.
And he charged people
$50 a session.
We all had therapy every week.
In regression hypnotherapy,
you tried to go back to trauma,
relive it, and then change it
so that they are empowered.
Well, he'd say, "I'm going to count to ten,
and you're going down the steps."
And he has this really
deep hypnotic voice.
Okay, close your eyes.
Back in time, down the steps.
Then he'd snap his
fingers, and--
"You're there.
How old are you?"
"Where are you now?"
And within a few minutes,
I was wailing and crying
like I'd never cried
in my life.
And then, you know, you'd, like,
hit the pillow and scream and cry, and--
When you were done,
I mean,
you literally would
just float out of that place.
It was amazing.
I divulged every secret,
every thought,
every fear--
exposed it all.
Whatever transpires here,
between you and I, should be kept here.
Do you have anybody
that you talk to
about everything
that you do or think or say?
My mother was very, very
involved in our lives,
and so much
of my Cleansings
went back to my childhood.
So there was a natural
thing that made sense
about keeping some distance.
Michel gave us all new names
to help us move beyond our past
and to create a new way
of seeing ourselves.
It was a common practice
in the group.
Amy was now called Emiliana.
Lori was called Cristal.
And I was now named Francesco.
It would come home to us
and told us that
they had changed their names,
and that this was what
they wanted to be called.
And I said, well,
we're not going to call you that.
We gave you your names,
and that is what we're going to call you,
and you might as well
get used to it.
They came for dinner and said,
well, what we came here for is,
we want to tell you
we want to detach from you.
I went, what?
I mean,
I couldn't believe it.
You're going to detach
from the family?
We'd had such a happy
childhood with these children.
So my father, who I was
very close to, was dying.
He told me
that I couldn't go see him.
This is so
you break the bond with him.
And I would make airline reservations,
and I'd cry and cry and cry,
and then,
I would cancel them.
But it was so difficult,
just so difficult.
I always--
my intuition was working overtime.
And I just kind of suspected
it might be a cult.
No, I did not feel
like I was in a cult.
He always told us
for a non-group,
we're an anti-cult.
You have fallen under the spell
of this controlling,
brainwashing fellow.
I am beg you, please.
That's not funny.
My family had hired
a private investigator
to follow me, and they found
that I was with this group.
He went back to my family
and said, oh, this is a benign group.
They're not dangerous.
It'll be harder for you
to pull her away.
It'll be more damaging.
Just let her be.
My family freaked out.
They said I was brainwashed.
They wanted to hire somebody
to deprogram me.
I was an adult.
They couldn't do anything.
I mean, we all joked.
We knew that we looked funny
following a man
in a speedo,
but it turns out,
some people didn't see it the way we did.
There was this guy, Kenny,
who fell in love
with this girl in our group.
And she was
this beautiful model type.
He was not in the group.
He was not a model type,
and he was not very nice.
This guy was stalking,
and his motivation was
to tear down the group
so that he could
have this girl.
Kenny started to attack Michel,
saying he was a cult leader,
telling us what we could
and couldn't do.
He went to Cult Awareness Network,
which was an organization
run by Rick Ross.
When you have leaders who,
that claim to speak for God,
cannot be questioned
by their followers,
and have little, if
any, accountability,
uh, you have
a very volatile mix.
So he pulled in
Cult Awareness Network
to try and make us look
like we're holding her captive.
Parents who paid Cult
Awareness Network to go in,
kidnap their children,
and deprogram them.
This was Michel's worst fear,
that the Buddhafield was
going to be called a cult.
Now, it was no longer
talking about the Knowing,
and it was no longer
talking about God and love.
It's talking about
what are we gonna do?
He said,
I'm no longer in a position
where I can do my work
in this environment.
We need
to get out of here.
Michel didn't really
give anyone warning.
In the middle of the night, he grabbed
me, his cook, another body worker,
said, "Pack your bags.
We're going."
And I'm like,
"Where are we going?"
We're just going.
I had no credit card,
no money,
no bank account,
no phone.
You know, I was living
underground with him.
Everyone else stayed
in Los Angeles for the time being
to await instructions.
Eventually, he would decide
where they should go.
Namaste, Michel.
Thank you for reminding me
to be a thousand-percent disciple.
I'm so deeply in love
with you.
There's no meaning in my life
except you.
And whatever it takes
to be with you again,
whatever fire,
I am willing to go through.
Thank you for my life.
Namaste, master.
It was
like losing my family
all over again.
You don't want to give that up
and be tossed back into the--
the dogs of L.A.
And I was so devastated.
We were just left behind.
Think it's all I could
really say is thank you.
Thank you
for letting me love so much.
My heart is yours,
my lord.
I wanted to go with him.
I never, ever wanted to be
without him.
We went to all these places
trying to figure out
where we were going
to live next,
and how were we going
to protect ourselves.
His behavior started
to become obsessive.
He convinced all of us that
every Christ figure that walked
the earth had been killed
because they brought very
unconventional and radical ideas
that society didn't like,
and so
they would kill 'em.
I was as close
to him as anybody,
and I still didn't
know who he was.
I don't think anyone
really knew who he was.
I think he may have had
his mother die really young, or something.
His brother died
when he was real young.
I know that he had come
from a wealthy family.
Some years in the '60s
in San Francisco...
At least that's what he said
to me.
...dark arts groups.
I know he came to America
to be a movie star.
He wanted to be famous.
His first name was Jaime Gomez.
His stage name was
Michel Rostand.
He was an actor,
and, I assumed,
probably a good one,
until I saw some of his acting.
I know he was
in Rosemary's Baby.
I know that he was
in the movie Rosemary's Baby.
Oh, he was in Rosemary's Baby.
His whole role in this
movie was just, like,
a millisecond at the end of it,
looking into the camera.
According to some
that had come around,
they saw him in some
pornographic movies.
And I just thought
that was such hogwash.
He never made it to be a star,
although I'm sure
that was his intention.
He'd use his hypnosis,
his spiritual understanding,
and his acting methods,
and they all kind of merged
into this way of coming to God.
We were on the road
for six months,
trying to find a place
where we could settle down,
where the whole group could
come join us.
And he decided
Austin, Texas was the place.
One of his disciples bought him
a house in the suburbs.
He changed his name
so anybody who was looking
for Michel Rostand
couldn't find him,
because he was now
just called Andreas.
After we had been
under the radar long enough,
Andreas felt it was time
to bring everyone back together.
He wanted everyone
to move out in small pods.
People broke their leases,
sold their homes and their belongings,
and began to pack.
People trickled in to Austin,
and we recreated the Buddhafield.
New people would show up
all the time.
We were sharing this love
that we were experiencing
with other people.
I would say the word recruit.
We were all recruiting.
And I recruited lots
of people, myself.
He was looking for people
who were open,
and that was his instruction.
And then,
he started recruiting
people that knew how to do ballet,
'cause he loved ballet.
He used yoga classes
to recruit more members
so that he would always have
more people coming in.
It was a very
interesting group of people
'cause they were
all beautiful.
These beautiful bodies
and these little speedos,
and the girls were
so beautiful, and--
You couldn't miss them.
Even though he wanted
new disciples,
Andreas was still hesitant
to let anyone get too close to him.
He kept telling us that there was
still a lot to be afraid of
from the outside world.
Well, as you can see,
the fire has indeed engulfed
the vast majority of this compound.
- The latest figures we have--
- Just 100 miles north of us, Waco happened.
We watched in horror as 72 members
of a presumed cult died
during a government raid.
This freaked him out,
'cause he thought what happened
to David Koresh was going to happen to him.
This was a spiritual leader who was
being demonized and running this group,
and he was afraid
that people were going to draw parallels,
and they were going
to see him as that.
I did feel like I needed
to protect him at times.
In Austin, it was "keep the group secret."
It's sacred.
Sacred things need to be kept secret.
We did exercises in class to practice
in case the FBI captured us.
You're going to tell them
that you don't know any Andreas.
You don't know anybody.
I wasn't sure if the FBI was
after us or not,
but I would do whatever it took
to protect him or the group.
Even though I wasn't
a very good liar, I did it.
I had no integrity at all.
I would lie
to my mother for him.
We were instructed
that we had to lie to my parents
all the time.
I rarely had any interaction
with anyone outside the group.
Even my parents,
who lived nearby in Ft. Worth,
had no idea I was in Austin.
Here, my brother lived
three hours from my parents.
There is no reason for us
having to keep up this lie.
They're not going to come and
inspect your ashram.
I had to come up
with elaborate lies.
I told them I moved to Atlanta,
and to Mexico, and anywhere
to give them a reason
not to expect to see me.
He would have people
that were going to Europe
get a postcard
and mail it to my parents.
Here's a postcard
I sent from Florence
when I was Francesco.
He'd send me all these
little gifts from these places
to prove that he was writing me
these letters, and--
And I still saw through it.
And it's sad,
and it broke our hearts, really.
Bye, Will.
We just had to hope
it would all work out.
Nice having you.
My role increased
in the Buddhafield,
and I had a group of new disciples
eager to do service with me.
I set out to make our house in Austin
a place of peace and beauty.
By the time we were finished,
we had built not only a massive garden,
but also an aviary
complete with peacocks, exotic birds,
even a wallaby.
The garden became
our sanctuary,
and his house became
like a refuge from the outside world.
Things quieted down.
Time went by,
and we didn't hear much
from Cult Awareness Network anymore.
We thought our lives might be
getting back to normal.
But the demands
of the Buddhafield,
and Andreas, became
greater and greater.
The aviary, with all the birds
and bunnies, was overrun by rats.
We would lift up a rock,
and hundreds of rats would go running out.
He asked us
to kill the rats.
Then we armed ourselves
with shovels.
I would hit them over the head
or we'd have to decapitate them.
It just went
on and on and on,
killing these
furry little creatures.
It was like he was
playing a game with us,
like he was turning us
into his own personal little warriors.
Andreas loved to dance, and he said
he wished he had a theater.
So I found this amazing piece of
He told me to buy it and he said,
"Let's build a theater, design a theater."
Teacher would come out some days
and he would look at it, and he would say,
"I don't like the back
of this building.
"I don't like where the windows are.
I don't like the walls.
"Take it down."
And we would.
We would literally
unbuild the building
and rebuild it again for him
to come out and look at it.
He would take me
into his room and he would say,
"Why are you taking so long
to build this building?
"If I was doing this,
this would have been done a year ago.
"You're delaying my work.
You're creating karma."
I was just horrified.
And he'd say,
"This is all just a teaching for you.
"It doesn't matter
when the building gets built.
"What I care about is
you awakening through this process."
"And if you don't get this
building done by next week, this--"
And I would just go,
"Did that just happen?"
Once the theater was built,
Andreas began choreographing ballets.
We would rehearse
eveery day for hours.
People would drop everything,
including their jobs, to make it to rehearsal.
These ballets were astonishing.
Fabric would be ordered
from L.A. and flown in
so that we could have
these elaborate costumes,
and sets would be designed.
It was something extraordinary.
Everybody was involved.
We would rehearse them
for a year,
do costumes and everything,
and we'd only show
these ballets once,
to ourselves,
and that was it.
He lived, like, a multi-millionaire's
life in the simplest form.
He had a chauffeur.
I drove him around.
He had a cook.
People cooked for him.
He had people
cleaning his house.
Everywhere he went in public,
I brought along
a special chair.
It was huge.
It was on a back pack.
It was about like this.
So, on one end, he's, like, totally
paranoid and trying to be secretive.
And on the other end, he has
this entourage of people who are
setting up a throne for him
anywhere he goes in public.
He would call me and he would say,
"What are you doing?"
And I'm, like,
"I'm in bed."
And he'd say, "You better get out
of that bed! You've got service to do!"
It was all designed to show
how devoted you really were.
He wanted to control the social lives, uh,
interactions of everybody, what they did.
It was presented
as your spiritual guidance,
what's best for your soul.
We weren't supposed to read books,
watch TV, listen to the radio,
and I never did any of it.
He became upset
with me one day
when I told him
that I'd bought a TV,
and he'd later said,
"Oh, you did that behind my back."
And I was like, "I didn't know
that I had to go and tell you
"before I'd made the decision
to buy a TV."
I got a dog at one point.
It was not acceptable.
It wasn't okay
to get a dog.
I ended up having
to give the back.
The public humiliation was
just too intense.
I felt like I was this horrible disciple
because I had gone and gotten
this little puppy
without asking his permission.
He didn't like dogs.
With my friend, Danielle,
we used to say,
when he'd be crazy, and, like, nyuh,
doing all of these weird expressions,
she'd look across the room
and she'd go,
"We're going to be here
for the rest of our lives."
I mean, it was kind of nice
when it first started out
and it wasn't all
about adoring him,
It was about achieving some kind
of spiritual growth for yourself,
not licking his feet.
[ La Femme Fatale by Andreas]
If you think untainted
In a woman's body
You can be a copy
Or you can be
- La femme fatale
- La femme fatale
La femme fatale
La femme fatale
La femme fatale
- La femme fatale
- Every man is the possible catch
She's just really sexy,
and she's going to come down,
she's going
to be flirtatious,
and that whole thing,
and everyone else is flirting--
Femme Fatale was a song
Andreas wrote.
about the negative effect
sex has on spirituality.
I jumped at the opportunity
to make something
that wasn't just
about the Buddhafield.
But the song also served
as a public satire against the woman
who Andreas thought was
being too sexual.
I didn't want to be
a part of an attack,
but I went ahead
and made a very funny video.
It was a big hit.
La femme fatale
He did not like anyone to have a n--
a normal, natural sex life.
And how he treated sexuality
in general was juvenile.
Uh, there was a young lady
in our group named Sophia.
She was an amazing--
She spent her whole life
just wanting to be a bellerina.
She danced beautifully, and, of course,
he made her, like, his prima ballerina.
Andreas wanted her
to spend time with me,
to be close to me,
but not to have sex with me.
He knew, all the time,
knowing that I was developing
this romantic
attachment for her,
because I was
telling him so.
He had told five different
women not to date me
because it would be bad
for my spiritual development.
It's a very
confusing subject.
There were so many mixed
messages about sexuality.
Like, we were told, you know,
that we are not our bodies,
and don't get stuck in sex,
and don't get stuck in your senses,
and transcend
all that stuff.
And yet, we were all
obsessed with how we looked.
You know,
the women all wear makeup,
people had
plastic surgery,
the guys all had
to go to the gym,
people waxed
their bodies.
He really did not like fat people,
did not want anyone in the group
that was not just physically a starlet.
Oh, he wanted everybody
to be starlets.
And so,
he was suggesting
that this person have
their eyes done,
or suggesting that this person have
their cheek bones,
or another person have
their chin.
He sort of got obsessed with it.
We were going
into his bathroom
and just finding piles
of mascara and fake eye lashes
and concealers.
He wore makeup, like,
every day of his life.
I remember one time,
I was in water with him
and he had an eye lash
on his cheek, and I'm, like...
trying to signal to him
to flick that off.
But I didn't know about the plastic surgery,
but it started to look evident.
He was always telling us,
this is the body,
it's going to be a carcass one day,
it's going to die.
And here he is, over here, doing his eyes,
his eyes, his this, his lips,
constantly doing stuff to his body.
- Are you filming?
- Yeah.
But he started to look very deformed
and, um, and-and scary-looking, really.
It was of a total dichotomy
of what the teaching was.
And I knew he would have
other people do plastic surgery
before he did it
so that he would see
if it was safe,
or how it looked,
and I never questioned it.
No one was gonna say,
dude, your makeup's running.
No one would dare.
I wouldn't dare.
- Here come Prince Edbu.
- Ooh.
There he goes.
He almost got me.
- Do you understand what he just did?
- Yeah. Yes.
You opened that door,
it almost slammed me.
I'd always turn the camera off
when Andreas was yelling.
We would use this term:
"You need to drop your mind."
That was something you would say
to someone, and-- and it was almost...
It was critical.
It was...
"Hey, you're not in line
with what's going on here."
You don't wanna be in the mind.
No thoughts.
If you're having thoughts,
you're not connected
to meditation and to God.
There's a term,
it's called mutual complicity.
You can't have a teacher
without followers.
The benefits outweighed
the craziness.
So you started to accept
the questionable stuff.
You just started
to accept it.
It's like any family.
And I think a lot
of us compartmentalized.
A lot of us rationalized...
Always. And he certainly helped us
rationalize everything.
The only truth that's left is
the truth that I am told,
and who is the highest
authority in the group?
It's the master.
You wanna have kids?
Spiritual growth and children...
don't always go together.
I told him I was pregnant,
and he said,
"Get an abortion."
I did not want
to have this abortion,
but he said I couldn't be
in the community
if I had the child.
I had the abortion.
As soon as I'd
hear his voice,
I would go into surrender mode
and do whatever he said.
I was with somebody
in the community
that I was really,
really in love with,
and I set it up
so that I would get pregnant,
'cause I thought,
oh, that would be okay.
Andreas had told him
he would be kicked out
if he didn't get me
to have an abortion.
So I had to get
another abortion.
In all the years
we were together,
not one child was born.
Sometimes our birds would escape
when we were feeding them,
and they'd fly away,
never to be seen again.
And so we had to protect them
for their own good.
Just because
the door is open
does it mean
you have to go through it?
If the door is
taking you away...
Sometimes, an open door is
a closed-up room...
a jail.
There were a lot of people
who didn't stick around.
Of course
they were demonized.
When I left the group,
everybody was told
something awful.
We were told,
"Do not communicate with them.
"They're in their minds."
There was rumors that I had turned
into a prostitute,
or I was running prostitutes
out of my house.
When people started to assert
their own independence,
he would crack the whip.
It was tightly controlled
that if you were
to go out on your own,
bad things were going
to happen to you.
If I ever left the group,
within a year, I would be dead.
Because I would be out
from under the wing of his grace.
He had told me
on a couple of occasions,
if I wasn't with him,
I would get AIDS.
And I would die.
And I believed him.
I believed him.
The thing was
was that he was a hypnotherapist.
That means he had his finger in the psyche
of every person that he was dealing with,
and every person,
he dealt with completely different.
So he manipulated each
and every personality that way.
You only have one opportunity
to be with me-- for once in a lifetime.
And this was
literally brainwashing.
We were doing
hypnotic work with people,
every day.
It's brainwashing.
I got to do some of the films
that we did for our group.
My character is, uh,
in the middle of the desert,
and the apocalypse has happened.
In the scene he bends down
to get water, and then he realizes
that he's not alone,
that the master is there.
Here we are, we're actors
in front of the camera.
We get this thing
with shaktis happening.
And I wasn't sure
whether or not it was an act...
or whether it was real.
Then I started thinking, maybe...
maybe the whole thing is an act.
Something's wrong here.
Thoughts came in all the time.
I was always getting the message
and I chose not to listen.
I was, like,
"What the fuck has this turned into?
It's become a circus."
And the shakti
of the Divine Mother has become...
And some of the older people
that had been around since the beginning
were kind of looking
at each other, going,
"Uh, I didn't hear
where this suddenly changed
"to 'it's all about him' instead
of 'all about your inner experience.'"
I wouldn't refer to him
other than anything he was,
an out-of-work actor
who stumbled on the role
of a lifetime.
One of the people that had
been around for a long time
wrote an e-mail
and he sent it out to, like,
everybody in the Buddhafield.
There was this e-mail
that was sent out
about all this stuff,
and it was like, "What the fuck is this?"
The author of the e-mail was
leaving the group,
and he laid out serious
accusations towards Andreas.
By far, the most damning
accusation in the e-mail was
that Andreas had,
for years, been forcing
young, male disciples
into unwanted sexual relationships.
Andreas immediately told
all of those around him
that the letter was full of lies,
and not to read it.
And all of a sudden,
there started to be this division.
Some people didn't believe it,
some people did.
Because it's just
some letter somebody wrote,
and they could write
whatever they want.
I didn't have, personally,
any reason to believe
what those things were saying.
And some people coalesced
around him.
And even I did, initially.
I wrote a rebuttal to the letter.
Um, yeah, it was--
it was bullshit. I mean...
I'd been in a sexual
relationship with him.
I knew that everything
on there was pretty much true.
Well, how it started was
in the private therapy sessions.
Being a young man, and very new
to sexuality at that time,
have a lot of questions,
so you're talking to your
therapist about these things,
and so he's got this dossier
of information on you.
Have you ever had sex
with a guy?
Have you ever wanted to?
You can be
very honest with me.
And somewhere in there,
he started running you
through homosexual fantasies.
"Who do you find attractive?"
And then start naming women.
He's like, "No, like a guy."
You know, it was like,
being attracted to women had, like,
no validity whatsoever.
Do you fantasize?
- Yeah.
- What do you fantasize about?
What will it be like?
One day,
it was
after a therapy session,
and... he...
asked me to kiss him.
I was thrown.
I did not want that.
I wasn't looking for that.
That moral stuff
that's been put in your head...
...it is not your voice.
You need to get
to what is authentic,
'cause you're carring
so much problem in there.
The first thing he had me do
was just around the body.
It was like,
oh, you don't need to be uptight
about your body.
See, you can take off your clothes
and be unattached.
It's not a big deal.
I felt like I was doing
spiritual work initially.
Then it started to get, like,
ah, come closer to me.
And he sat in his throne, here,
very upright and I'd be in front
of him, on my knees,
and he would-- he said,
"Just do whatever you want to do,
whatever comes naturally."
And what came naturally to me was
I wanted to get away.
He started having sex with me,
not that day, but over a period of time.
And it became a regular thing--
every Tuesday and Saturday night,
after the gym.
It was like clockwork, and, um,
I had never been fucked before.
And, um,
I was totally
not down with it,
and I was hinting at it,
and expressing it,
and he's just ignoring it,
like, completely ignoring.
I mean, imaging having sex
with somebody, male or female,
and, you--
they're just laying there,
you know, just there, like,
spaced out, not paying attention to you.
"Oh, do you like this?"
And your answer is something like,
"Yeah, sure."
And they just keep fucking you,
'cause they don't fucking care.
You know, you're just
a sack of meat to this person.
That's when
I began to hate him.
I resisted
and I didn't want to be with him,
and I would cry, sometimes,
and he would say, "Okay, okay.
"Let's go down
the long flight of stairs
"go back to your childhood...
Who is it that you're resisting?"
And I'd be, like, "I'm resisting you!
I don't want to have sex with you!"
He's, like, "No, no,
let's go back to your childhood,
"when somebody wanted you to do something
and you didn't want to do it."
He was a master.
He was masterful...
at getting what he wanted.
And somehow, after this process,
I would be bowing at his feet, saying,
"Oh, my God, thank you.
"How do you always bring me
back to this beautiful place?"
And I'd get fucked again.
You can't say no.
No is against the rules.
And then I had to pay him.
I had to pay him for fucking therapy.
Fifty bucks,
every time I'd go in.
So, here's your bullshit therapy,
We're gonna fuck,
give me $50.
What a deal.
Can you even imagine?
This went on for every
single Monday of my life
for five years.
Here I am, like,
helping this guy every day
with his chair, with all
these little details of his life,
and I hate him.
But still, somehow,
I'm here in this group,
going through the motions
serving him,
and it was just,
I felt
like I was going mad, and--
I felt like I was
going fucking mad.
Sophia saved my life.
Thank you so much, Sophia.
Thank you.
She knew something was
funny with me.
She knew when Andreas told her
not to hook up with me,
that there was
something not right there,
and so she ignored him.
And so we developed
a romantic relationship.
At age 28, 29,
she was my first girlfriend,
like, a real girlfriend.
How could you?
We trusted you.
We trusted you.
We trusted--
We trusted you.
I still felt
like I owed him everything.
I feel like such an ass saying it,
you know, I was so stupid.
I-I thought, like, wow,
he's doing this for me,
and I never told anyone.
Not until everything fell apart.
I knew right there it was,
like, oh, my God, I see now.
I see what he's been doing.
It was so clear.
The curtain has been opened.
The curtain's open. Broke my heart.
You h-- you hurt people.
One after another,
young men started sharing
stories of abuse
with friends
and confidants in the group.
All these boys came out.
All these boys.
So they,
one after the other,
in tears, came and said,
well, this happened to me,
and this happened to me,
and it escalated,
and then it got worse.
I was hearing
more and more stories.
A lot of brothers were,
uh, heterosexual, and he...
He abused them.
He sodomized them.
I'm not here to compete
with anybody about anything,
'cause I don't have
any agendas with you,
except if you're sincerely...
wanted to grow up,
maybe this would be offered to you.
Do you follow?
He took 120 minds and manipulated
each one and their own story.
Nobody ever knew. No--
The right hand never knew
what the left hand was doing.
I never knew what was
going on with you.
I knew you, intimately,
for 25 years,
and never knew
that you were suffering.
If I had known that you were
suffering as much as you did,
or that my other brothers were
suffering as much as they did,
I would have put a stop to it
from the get-go.
It's true.
He started having sex with me
when he took me to Hawaii.
I didn't understand
what was happening.
He kept saying that everything
he was doing was for me.
He told me his master had
brought him close the same way,
and it was very special.
He was saving my life,
he told me.
I would die without him.
Yet he was still that person in my life
who could take me to this God experience,
and I was dependent on him
for that, in my mind.
And even though I had suspicions
that I wasn't the only one,
I kept quiet,
and protected him.
I couldn't show anyone what I was
feeling or what I was going through.
And despite having the whole
Buddhafield as my family,
I was alone.
He told me he was only
working with me this way,
and I could not tell anyone
because they would not understand.
But nobody had
the complete story.
So some people knew some things,
other people new other things,
I knew the thing that I knew,
but nobody was allowed to really
talk to each other about it.
I had no clue that he had been seducing
so many of the men in the community.
When I heard the stories
about what was actually happening,
that was when I was, like,
you motherfucker.
Along with the confessions
of sexual abuse
came other stories.
He told me to say I had cancer,
and I had to tell my best friends,
my lover, everyone,
and I had to keep that
a secret so that he could
be the great healer and heal me
of my cancer that didn't exist.
It was, like,
"Are you fucking kidding me?"
Was 70% of it a lie?
Was 80% of it a lie?
And finally, we discovered
that the rumors of him being
a porn actor were, in fact, true.
As more people were
finding out about the truth,
a few started
to confront Andreas.
And I said,
"You can't do this.
"This is our community
and you are destroying it."
I literally confronted him.
I go, "What are we doing?"
He'd completely deny it.
He'd say,
"Radhia, I know that you're hearing this,
"but I haven't done that."
He just had this innate belief
that you just keep telling the story
and they'll believe it.
I had to take a stand.
I knew there were a lot
of innocent, new people there
that would not even know
what was really going on.
I was, like, okay, enough.
This is what I needed to leave.
It got to a point
where I didn't care.
It was, like, okay,
I might be dead in a year,
but it is better than being
here for another second.
And I said, no more.
I am not your sex toy.
I'm done.
I'm not going to take any more.
He looked at me
and his eyes went black.
His eyes got different,
his face got different,
it was freaky.
It was clear to me,
when I was looking at him,
that I was dealing
with a madman
that was grasping at straws
to try to keep
everything together.
That's when the spell broke, and I was,
like, you have nothing for me anymore.
In a period of a week, boom, boom, boom,
all of a sudden, everybody started leaving.
He was on his heels.
He was backpedaling.
The Buddhafield was falling apart.
It was devastating to watch
my closest friends leave,
and I began to feel
the need to join them,
but as much as I tried,
I couldn't get rid of my sense
of obligation to Andreas.
He still denied everything,
and he wanted a chance to tell his side
of the story to those who would listen,
so he asked me to grab
my camera one last time.
We were summoned, uh,
to a house, uh, one evening,
that there was going to be
a message from Andreas.
And they put up this big video
screen and they showed this video.
What this is cannot be putted
in a biographical letter.
It doesn't need rsums
about its story.
What this is...
is free...
not apologize.
There were some people
that, for the first time I saw
in a gathering, that got up,
and, like, I don't know,
10 or 20 people left
while that video was going on,
because it was so disturbing.
I am in you.
But in truth,
there's no "I,"
and there's no "you."
Now, come.
May all beings wake up.
You could hear a pin drop.
Nobody bought it.
Everybody was questioning
things in their head.
But then he did something
that surprised us all.
He decided,
after 17 years,
it was time for another
Knowing session.
A few loyal members
took him up on his offer,
including my sister, Amy,
who still had no idea
what had happened to me.
And now, he's desperate to hold on
to those of us who still trusted him.
So he--
he revealed the Knowing.
And he was awful.
He wasn't even
connected to me at all.
The day after,
we went for a walk,
and he came up and he put
his hand on my wrist,
and he says,
"You know, Emeliana,
"these people are trying
to destroy your master,
"and I need to know
if you know someone
"or if you can find a way to
"have them taken out,
"get rid of them.
"If not that, find someone
who can just destroy their lives
"through the IRS,
or whatever way."
People he wanted harmed,
they were the two people
who were behind exposing the truth
of what was really
going on with him.
The guy who wrote
the letter and Radhia.
You know, it's--
How did this shatter?
How did everything shatter?
How did I come here being
so hated and so ostracized
and demonized
when I loved someone
so much and gave
my life for so long?
Yeah, I don't know
who he was at that point.
To see that
and finally start
having my realizations
about Andreas,
that everything he did was
a manipulation for some
narcissistic, maniacal end.
This thing was fucked.
Some members warned Andreas,
if he didn't stop his work,
they would press
charges against him.
We convinced him
he would be left alone
if he promised
to stop being a teacher.
I didn't want
to see him harmed,
but I wanted all this to end.
So I reluctantly flew
with him and a few others
to relocate him to Hawaii.
Here I was, returning to the place
where the abuse all started.
But finally this time,
I was done with the lies.
And I was done with him.
So, after 22 years,
I left...
without saying goodbye.
I had just had 200 of my closest friends,
who I considered to be family, gone.
It was kind of like
a bomb went off,
and, like, a village
that I lived in was totally destroyed.
That was the feeling it was.
I miss that community.
It's like a big death...
of your family all at once.
I did so much service for him
and didn't worry
about the future
that when it was over,
I had $45 to my name,
I didn't have a bank account,
I didn't have anything.
I remembered just laying
on the floor in fetal position.
It was like I was dropping
through this trap door.
It was black
and there was no bottom.
Where am I gonna
find that awe?
Who's gonna make me dance
in the forest?
You know?
Who's gonna make me be willing
to sing when I can't sing?
I questioned
everything I thought
when I came
out of the group.
I sold my house
and I took a job as a bouncer,
and, you know,
reclaimed my masculinity.
I was so angry.
I was so bitter.
I was so cynical.
I couldn't trust anything.
All of us who left the group
needed to heal.
- Happy birthday
- Like many of my friends,
I tried to mend the relationships
I had given up in the past.
Happy birthday to you
We embraced them.
We told them
we loved them.
We never gave up on them.
I had prayed that they would
come back and they did.
It was unbelievable, really,
what they'd been through.
And I was glad that they were
rid of this man,
and I just feel
a deep hatred, and I shouldn't.
I'm not supposed to hate,
But I feel that
he really is evil.
Really evil.
There's this social interplay
that happens between
highly co-dependent people
and pathological narcissists.
Who is going
to give a person,
who needs constant
adoration and attention,
who is going to give
that to them, ceaselessly?
Somebody who relies on him
as the source
of their self-esteem.
And they'll say, "You seem like a normal,
rational, intelligent human being.
"How did this happen to you?"
It was hard for me
to admit that...
I was brain-- I was brainwashed,
uh, and I was in a cult.
You know, looking back now,
he would do all kinds of things
to draw you in to him...
endearing things.
And he made you
feel special,
and you felt really loved.
There's something about seeing other people
being devoted that makes you think,
"Oh, well,
those people don't seem crazy."
It's what we do every time
we come into a religion.
We take on
their beliefs as truth.
You will do anything
to defend that truth.
You subjugate
your best interests
to the interests
of the religion,
the group,
the corporation.
That's what happens
in a group-think system.
That's what keeps you there.
Yeah, that's what kept me there.
And so, the better you feel,
the more you get committed.
And then, somebody can get you
to do anything.
I mean, I would have
killed or died for him.
It's so common.
It's everywhere.
Look around you.
You've got a cult in your town,
I almost guarantee you.
I know.
I see them all.
There's Andreas.
Andreas has created
a new group,
and currently has
over 100 followers.
I do think that he's
created that sort of
hyper protection
around him again.
Andreas was now calling himself
Reyji, which means god king.
To this day,
I don't understand.
Some people still stayed...
still stayed when they were told the truth.
Without those people
going along and being there,
he would not have been able
to reconstitute the group.
It hurts me to see that he's still
doing the same manipulation,
and it's sad, because
people give up their lives.
You give up your power.
They're going to deny
their own ambitions,
their own
abilities and talents
for him.
Everything's going
to be done for him.
The thing is,
what I would say to them,
if I thought that
they could hear,
was he is not it.
He is only here for himself,
not for you.
Now, could-could they hear that?
I know they couldn't.
I couldn't hear it for 22 years.
Innocent people are coming,
now, to this day,
and they're very sincere,
and they should know.
They should know the truth.
Like, the only way we can
get to him is undercover.
Um, otherwise, if he sees
a camera, he will disappear.
In the beginning,
when I came into the Buddhafield,
I initially thought that I was
finding a deeper truth in my films.
I thought I was capturing life
and expressing love.
But really,
I had just fed his cause
and contributed, in my own way,
to hurting people that I loved.
- What do you think?
- Yeah.
Getting freaked out.
When did you get here?
My birthday.
Staying over there.
And what are you doing?
Just being alive
and enjoying.
Me, too.
I mean,
it hasn't been easy.
- You know what I mean?
- Mm-hmm.
You have a lot
of disciples, I see, huh?
People come and go.
This is it, pretty much,
like people pass through.
Well, all right.
Are you being a good boy?
I don't know what that is.
Don't you think
you should learn what that is?
Good and bad,
better to find out
what is best.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Have you been being
your best boy?
I'm just being.
For years I felt
like I had no power,
no voice.
But I was wrong.
Sorry, Andreas,
but somebody needs to stop you,
because you've hurt my brother,
and you have hurt my other brothers
in ways that they will
never heal from,
and you need to go down,
you ugly, distorted, son of a bitch.
Fuck you.
It's sort of this tedious process
of looking, sifting through everything,
and looking at the good,
and then letting go
of some of the negatives.
There's a lot of good.
I feel like I'm
much more clear,
much more knowledgeable,
and much more aware
than I--
I would have ever been
if I hadn't gone
through that entire experience.
I don't think
about the bad.
It-- It doesn't come
to my conciousness.
'cause I only remember what was
good for me and what helped me.
And what helped me was...
this, this connection
we have with each other.
It wasn't because of the teacher.
It was because of us.
It was this beautifully crazy,
insane, horrible experience
that has made me
who I am today,
and I-- I can't
wrap myself around it.
I'm really glad
about who I am now.
I'm really happy
with my life.
I have an amazingly
rich, beautiful life.
I have an amazing...
I both regret it
and I don't regret it,
and I'm super thankful, and...
really happy
about who I am now, so...
maybe it's worth this.
Maybe it's worth the--
In 2006, I shot video portraits
of some of my friends.
By the time I finished
the video in 2007,
the Buddhafield
as I had known it
had broken apart.
We'll do it all
Some followed
the teacher to Hawaii.
- But most left.
On our own
It was a confusing time.
We don't need
Anything or anyone
Or anyone
If I lie here
If I just lie here
Would you lie with me
and just forget the world?
Forget what we're told
Before we get too old
Show me a garden
that's burstin' into life
All that I am
All that I am or was
It's here in your perfect eyes
They're all I can see
I don't know where
Confused about how as well
Just know that these things will
never change for us at all
If I lie here
If I just lie here
Would you lie with me
and just forget the world
[ Sky Inside by Cabot Budlong]
Raining down
Down upon me
and all around I feel it
Raining down
Rain down on me
Rain until you heal it
And the gray sky's overshadowed
In the clouds up above me
And see the clouds
turning into clear blue skies
And I'm asking,
asking you to reveal it
I'm asking, asking you
to reveal that sky inside
- Raining down
- Raining down
- Down upon me and all around I feel it
- O-o-ohhh
- Raining down, rain down on me
- Raining down, on me
- Rain until you heal it
- Rain until you heal it
- And the gray sky's overshadowed
- Gray sky's overshadowed
- In the clouds up above me
- Clouds up above me
- Somewhere on the other side
- Somewhere on the other
- Falling down like love
- Side
- And I see that cloud turning into you
- Side, I feel that sky
- Then I'm asking you, asking you
- Inside
To reveal that sky inside
Now I'm standing in what you rebuilt
Sky inside
Sky inside