Romana’s Lemurian Fellowship: A Unique Approach to Religion and Life
By Chris Langton
The Romona Sentinel, December 26, 1974, page 10, Section B
One of the things that makes Ramona unique is that it is the location for the world headquarters of the few thousand followers of The Lemurian Philosophy.
About five miles out of Ramona on Highway 67, the Lemurian Fellowship, a corporation set up for spreading the Lemurian Philosophy, carries on its work quietly from a small complex of buildings on its 60-acre site. Its work consists primarily of running a correspondence school for teaching the Lemurian Philosophy to its students.
The Lemurian Philosophy appears to be a unique blend of religious, philosophical, ethical and historical elements. Although it is not a religion in the orthodox sense, with regular services and congregational programs and all the trappings of organized religion, its teachings include a concept of God and His universal laws, and the terminology of the philosophy reflects the influence of both eastern and western religious concepts.
Also evident in the teaching is the mental discipline and basis on set principles found in philosophy, but with the emphasis on practicality and applicability in an individual’s experience found in ethics. In fact, students of the teaching say one of the main advantages to the philosophy is its practicality in dealing with their lives.
“With our philosophy , we try to get people to approach the practical aspects of their lives, and to solve their problems,” explains Reynolds
G. Dennis, a member of the board of governors of the Lemurian Fellowship and a student of the Lemurian Philosophy for over 30 years. “People that are too idealistic have trouble with it. We’re not a large organization, although we are world-wide, because we make some pretty stringent demands on people’s lives. To put the principles of the teachings to work requires asking people to make some sacrifices, getting them to change habits, which is hard. But one of the joys of our work is to see these principles work and enable students to solve their problems.”
The principles of the Lemurian Teaching were the revelation of Dr. Robert D. Stelle, who founded the Lemurian Fellowship In 1936 in Chicago. Headquarters for the fellowship moved to Milwaukee for a time, then to Chula Vista and finally In 1941 to Ramona, Dennis said, to get away from the influence and pressure of the city to the quiet of the rural area, yet still be close to the advantages a major city has to offer.
The system of teachings founded by Dr. Stelle is based on a cosmic hierarchy of existence, which involves reincarnation and evolution of the Ego (the term in Lemurian lexicon for one’s Identity) In a series of life experiences designed to teach one to handle every aspect of existence and thus to advance toward perfection and at-one-ment with God. Students say the principles incorporated in the Lemurian Philosophy, when applied, will enable one to better handle these experiences and to advance egoically.
“We believe sincerely that man’s life and affairs are governed by cosmic, natural, universal law, God’s law,” Dennis said, in explaining the basis of the Lemurian teachings. “We’re committed to obey the laws of nature, and when we go contrary to them we experience unpleasant things, from which we learn.”
“We will grow as we cooperate with these natural laws. We believe the Ego progresses, not just through one lifetime, and accumulates experience that will allow us to grow so we can master all aspects of human life.”
Dennis said individuals are at different levels of egoic unfoldment or advancement, and that Dr. Stelle’s level of advancement was such that he was receptive to the revelation of the Lemurian Philosophy from the Elder Brothers, the Egos according to the Lemurian Philosophy who have advanced far enough That they no longer need to incarnate. The ultimate of the Lemurian teachings is for as many Egos as possible to reach the level of advancement achieved by the Elder Brothers.
The Lemurian Philosophy has its historical basis in the Mukulian civilization, a civilization that thrived on a continent named Mu claimed by followers of the philosophy to have existed in the area of the Pacific Ocean, Like the lost continent of Atlantis, this continent is said to have sunk into the ocean during a time when its civilization was falling under the influence of corruptive elements in the population. However, the Lemurian teaching holds that records of that civilization were preserved and became the basis for the civilization of Atlantis.
Some of the records, scientific data, thinking, art and culture of Atlantis and Mu was saved when Atlantis too was submerged, Lemurian students contend, and It is part of this wealth of knowledge that is passed along in the Lemurian Philosophy. The work of the Fellowship in teaching the philosophy is done with the hope of preparing students for a new age and a new society which will be the most advanced human society of all time, and will incorporate all the good of the previous civilizations of Mu and Atlantis, as preserved in the Lemurian Teaching.
“Our Philosophy stems from the Mukulian civilization, associated with the area where the Pacific Ocean is currently,” Dennis said during an interview. “Evidence is being found more frequently today of a highly advanced civilization that submerged in the Pacific area.”
“When the continent submerged, all the records and history of the civilization that grew out of it were preserved and brought together by the Great Brotherhoods. Mu was engulfed with selfishness and greed, which went against the laws of nature, and that is why it was destroyed. If we follow the teaching and live in accord with these laws, we can avoid such a catastrophe.”
Dennis said the followers of the Lemurian Philosophy are trying to take the good features of these lost civilizations and build a new order and advanced human society from them.
“That order is a long way off,” he said. “What we’re trying to do here is to live enough of the philosophy to be an example of what we teach. We have our short-comings, but we know we are w working towards a goal. and that makes it easier to stay on the right path.”
What the Lemurian followers teach Is contained in 12 basic lessons, each of about 30,000 to 40,000 words, although Dennis said these are presently being revised into more and shorter lessons. These lessons are sent to students for a monthly tuition fee, and are designed to train him step by step in the Lemurian Philosophy.
The basics of the philosophy include natural laws for balanced living, Dennis said, such as the Law of Action and Reaction (Cause and Effect), Law of Precipitation, Law of Compensation, Law of Correspondence and the Law of Transmutation, which can be applied to an individual’s experience to help him solve his problems. Questionnaires are included with each lesson to determine a student’s grasp of the teaching and his ability to apply it to his life.
Lessons cover such topics as the origin of man, transition (death), reincarnation, karma, marriage and relationships, health, the history of the Mukulian civilization, the Bible, the life of Christ, the New Order and the twelve virtues, The twelve virtues; according to Dennis, are most important to become a balanced individual.
“We try to cultivate the 12 basic virtues (sincerity, discrimination, precision, efficiency, patience, tolerance, kindliness, charity, courage, forbearance, devotion and humility) to, achieve a balanced character,” said Dennis. “We feel if we can balance each of the virtues we can do a better job of living in accord with cosmic law.”
Upon completion of the basic study in the 12 lessons, an advanced training course may be taken which Dennis said allows the student to show a firmer grasp of the principles taught in the basic course. Graduates of the advanced course are screened and about 90 per cent of them are invited to join the student organization known as the Lemurian Order. Membership in the Order is a mark of distinction to those who have shown they are dedicated to building a foundation for the coming new society, said Dennis.
The Lemurian Fellowship receives only a few hundred applications yearly for its correspondence course, Dennis said, and of these perhaps 10 to 15 percent are accepted for the course. The correspondence work is handled by four or five teachers at the Ramona headquarters. Dennis said many people who begin the course embrace another religion at the time, and continue to practice that religion while they study the Lemurian Philosophy.
“We have found that much an arrangement is satisfactory for a time, and that it depends solely on the level of advancement of the individual,” he said. “We don’t require that they stop following another faith, although most people who continue with the Philosophy find, as they get more involved with it and understand it, that any other religion gradually loses its significance for them.”
People come to the Lemurian Philosophy from all backgrounds and all religions, said Dennis. The only thing most have in common is their orientation towards practicality.
“We have students from all backgrounds and all religions,” Dennis said. “There’s no stereo-type for those who study the Lemurian Philosophy, But all of them are practical people, which They must be to be able to use the teaching. A desire to apply the rules of the teaching is requisite for one to become a student.”
Another aspect of the Lemurian organization is the Lemurian Crafts, which Dennis described as an expression of the Lemurian Philosophy in action, It is an effort by a handful of students of the Lemurian Order to make artistic and useful products and market them.
The work is carried on at the Fellowship’s other property in Ramona, a 200-acre site at the end of Montecito Way. Their main product at this time is custom architectural hardware, mostly door-pulls for businesses. These are made of aluminum, brass and bronze, and designed and inlaid with semi-precious stones, marble, ceramic tile and other materials.
Dennis said the products are marketed through a firm in St. Louis, and the proceeds go to help maintain the Lemurian facility in Ramona. He said the work gives students an opportunity to prove the effectiveness of the teaching in living and working together, and gives them a feeling of being part of the Lemurian program.
Although followers of the Lemurian Philosophy claim it is a practical teaching, and can be used to achieve a more balanced life. It has appealed to relatively few since the founding of the Fellowship in 1936. Though the Lemurian Teaching is geared towards the establishment of a new order in society, Dennis said the philosophy is not for everybody, as the numbers of students indicate.
“We don’t say it’s the last word,” said Dennis,” and it may not be the answer for everybody right now. But it’s something to which some of us want to devote our lives.”
More detailed information on the Lemurian Fellowship may he found in their latest brochure, which may he obtained by writing to the Lemurian Fellowship, P, 0. Box 397, Ramona, Calif. 92065.