The early 80s: Morining in America
As the new women joined, some of the older women resented them, naturally, and the attention they were getting from the men. You can imagine it I’m
sure. Catty stuff. My dad loved it, I can see in his diary he takes an almost malicious glee in inter-feminine conflict. It riled things up, kept
people off-balance, off kilter. I think he liked that. The community was changing, and whenever there is change, there is fear in whoever holds the
most power, because unless they control the change, they have the most to lose. My dad was on some level happy with the blossoming of female
jealousies and infighting, because it kept the girls divided and from ganging up on him in any way. Women have a great strength in numbers, when they
are together they can work and unite very well, utilizing their empathic qualities. When they are set against each other, they are isolated and much
easier for somebody like my dad to manipulate individually or in small groups to his heart’s content. After much thought, I think this is the source
of his delight in conflict and chaos around this time, although of course he hid it from himself and others. It comes out in his diary, though.
Here’s one passage:
March 12, 1981: Today was a kind of nothing day. I wanted to start getting those posts put in, so I went to [town name] and contacted [person] who
has Deere and something to sleeve the post holes with. We sat around and he filled me in on some town politics…[omitted] When I got back, S was fit
to be tied, she was shrieking at L about a lost hairbrush. Third time this week S has exploded at L, and S is looking at me with those big brown eyes
like "hint hint." Yes I'm not stupid I know you are trying to tell me something but I like watching you put your heart into it, fair girl, ha-ha. You
get mad when you think I'm dense, its so cute. Meanwhile S kept screaming and L just sat there looking down at the floor, she has to because she’s a
[Note: this was a word for a new recruit, like “flowerbud,” not yet opened -ND]. I wondered how much she would take and if I would have
to step in, but I held back and actually I had to choke back the laughter when I saw how much she would put up with. Stupid, she’s been kicked
around before too much I guess. We’ll get her on her feet, she is a fine woman underneath. Finally I decided S had had enough fun with L, and I sent
S to do cleanup in the kid’s wing, which I know she particularly hates. L is clearly most at home in a yang-over-yin scene, and I will have to see
about moving her over to V’s room because the show she and S are putting on is growing tiresome.
There’s pages of this stuff, it’s nuts.
The new scene was a lot less “philosophical” than the old one had been, and my dad was slipping up on providing rigorous training and spiritual
practice for all the new girls. There were a lot of them, and he seemed more preoccupied with finding new and ever-seedier adult-entertainment ways
for them to make money than he did with their spiritual growth. They still had to adhere to the order and routine of the community, though, which
involved study of religious theory and meditative practice as well as work around the compound. Substantial money was now starting to come in, and we
got lovely brick buildings, architect-designed, new cars, more land, and a whole host of new comforts around this time. Big walls went up, and
advanced (for the time) security measures. My dad was raking in enough cash with “the girls” (as he always called them, and as they called
themselves) to have enough to invest, and he was sinking it into real estate around the area for the most part, as well as stocks and other areas.
Our group was getting big enough to attract heightened attention from various authorities. Regulators, child protective service people, town bigwigs
of various sorts. I have no way of proving it, but I think certain palms were getting greased with bribes (and maybe sometime “time alone with one
of the girls”) to keep the authorities from getting too close. Also, it was a different world back then, people left each other alone more,
especially in rural New England. Out of sight, out of mind, our group could be left alone as long as we left everyone else alone. My dad’s
relationship with the authorities was never perfect, full of ups and downs, and mistakes that would come back to haunt him later.
In 1983, there was a period when a lot of the remaining “old people” started to leave. I remember it quite vividly, I was 11 and I was heartbroken
that so many old friends (who were really more like family) were taking off. My dad seemed strangely unconcerned with this exodus. I’d seen him get
furious when other people left or talked about leaving, but this time, nothing at all. I thought at least it would wound his vanity. For a long time
this was puzzling to me, and it wasn’t until many years later that I realized he wanted
them to go, simply because he was bored with them and
they weren’t as exciting as the new people. They remembered him from the old days, too, when he was a less lofty figure, so they didn't give him as
much "worshipfulness" as the newer girls. He was growing more remote and distant, more "imperial" in his manners. So he manipulated the situation to
squeeze some of the older people out, arranging things so they would decide to remove themselves, and it wouldn’t look like he forced them. Sneaky,
sneaky. By summer 1983, there were 64 people listed, and maybe less then ten had been there since the beginning.
I guess in some ways, the early and mid-80s was the peak. There were more people than ever, more money than ever, my dad was very positive and on top
of the world. None of the more serious problems that would plague the community later had started yet.
edit on 5-1-2012 by Never Despise because: (no reason given)