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Welcome to 3HOHistory.com

3HO History
A firsthand account of the early days of
3HO, the Healthy, Happy, Holy Organization

According to Hari Singh and Hari Kaur Bird Khalsa

With special thanks to all who have contributed to this presentation.
(Updated Monday, July 25, 2014)

          
M.S.S. Hari Singh Bird Khalsa                     S.S. Hari Kaur Bird Khalsa


Hari Kaur and Hari Singh

3HO
Healthy-Happy-Holy Organization
The not-for-profit corporation dedicated to sharing the
technology of Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan
in order to help people live Healthy, Happy, Holy lives.

Before 3HO

The 'Birds' moved to Florida from the Midwest in early 1969 after Hari Singh attended a January conference of Opticians in Sarasota, Florida. Before returning home they explored the idea of moving to Florida if the logistics could be worked out. Hari Singh then acquired a job offer with the Merritt Optical Laboratory in Orlando, now Apex Optical Laboratory, so they returned home and put their house up for sale, which they had just purchased prior to Thanksgiving of 1968. It was decided that if the house sold quickly, and they realized enough cash flow to pay the moving expenses, they would make the move to Florida. They subsequently moved to Orlando in February of 1969.

Orlando - The City Beautiful


View of Orlando's Lake Eola from Orange County courthouse

   
Views of downtown Orlando skyline from Lake Eola

The Beginning


1967 Poster

'Hair' tells the story of the "Tribe", a group of politically active,
long-haired hippies of the "Age of Aquarius" living a bohemian life
in New York City and fighting against conscription into the Vietnam War.

Sat Nam. The Bird family's first contact with Yogi Bhajan happened a few weeks after Hari Singh attended a Theosophical Society meeting in Winter Park, a suburb of Orlando in early 1970, a few months after the historic Woodstock Music Festival. The guest speaker was Yogi John Twombly (John later married a lady named Soorya), a local resident who was living with his parents on Nela Avenue in South Orlando. Yogi John had recently returned to Orlando from a music festival where he met and became a student of Yogi Bhajan. John was the first Florida teacher of Kundalini Yoga and the first head of a 3HO ashram in the Orlando area.

One evening, Yogi John addressed the Orlando chapter of Theosophical Society concerning Kundalini Yoga and the traditions of India.

When Hari Singh returned home from the gathering, he told Hari Kaur that “a guy with long hair, who looked like Jesus” had spoken to the group. He asked Hari Kaur, “What do you think about inviting him to dinner sometime?” She said anytime would be fine, so a date and time was arranged for Yogi John to come to the house.

James George
Former Canadian High Commissioner to India


James George

James George was Yogi Bhajan's first foreign student in India. He used to come to my home to take Yoga lessons from Yogi Bhajan. He and I did the Shankh Prachalaan kriya, a digestive and respiratory cleansing kriya, a few times.

He was so impressed with Yogi Bhajan's yoga techniques that he encouraged him to teach Kundalini Yoga at Toronto University.

After accepting Commissioner James George's invitation and the University's invitation to come and teach Kundalini Yoga, Yogi Bhajan left for Toronto in year 1968.

He left behind three very young children and a wife who had no idea how she could be supported during his absence.

A Ms. Cohen who was his Toronto coordinator met a tragic accident a week earlier before Yogi Bhajan was due to arrive.

The Toronto University position did not pan out and he was left to his own devices and the kindness of his sister-in-law's hospitality until he left for Los Angeles at the invitation of his old Sikh indian Friend, Dr. Amarjit Singh Marwaha, a wealthy and respected community leader and close friend of Mayor Tom Bradley of Los Angeles. After four years, Yogi Bhajan was joined by his family in Los Angeles. A little part of forgotten history.

Note: if you have Netflix, please see "Crazy Wisdom" about the Buddhist Monk who escaped from Tibet and landed in America through UK. Here also, you will notice a photo/interview of Canadian High Commissioner, James George.

Ranbir Singh Bhai --


Ranbir Singh Bhai

Yogi John
First Florida Teacher of Kundalini Yoga


Yogi John Twombly, 1969

When Yogi John came to dinner he advised us that his spiritual teacher -- Yogi Bhajan -- was coming to Orlando in the near future to teach some Kundalini Yoga classes. He also advised that since his parents did not relate to his lifestyle, he did not feel that Yogiji could be properly accommodated in their home. So he asked if Yogiji could stay with the Birds.

We agreed. And when he indicated Yogiji would be bringing a secretary and asked if she, along with Yogi John, could also stay we again agreed.

What really ended up happening was that hours after Yogiji and his secretary, Premka Kaur, arrived a total of 26 house guests showed up, as well as some 'Hog Farm' folks who fortunately stayed in their 'Road Hog' bus since the house had just three bedrooms and only one bathroom.

Yogi Bhajan Arrives In North America

It was September 13, 1968. Harbhajan Singh Yogi, now thirty-nine years of age, waited his turn in the line-up that had just disembarked at Toronto's international airport. In the queue were tourists, professionals, government people and hopeful immigrants. Gradually, Harbhajan's place in line moved up, as people were cleared at the front by the customs inspectors.

Himself having so recently been the chief customs officer at India's busiest airport, Harbhajan Singh savoured the sweet irony of his new status. Finally, the people in front of him were cleared and it was his turn to step forward and engage the officer at his desk. The inspector's eyes took in the papers placed in front of him.

"Your profession?"

"I am a yogi." Harbhajan Singh, the former customs inspector, had decided to make a break with his past. A new future required a new identity and this was it.

"Pardon me?"

"I am a yogi. You can say it is like a priest. I am a man of God."

"Do you plan to work here?"

"Yes. I have been offered a job at the university here as a teacher of yoga. You can see from the letter here."

"I see. What do you have with you?"

"Only this handbag. My luggage went missing in Amsterdam."

"All right, then. Welcome to Canada!"

The arrivals lounge was packed with people pushing to and fro. You could hear French and English being spoken. There was a cluster of Czech refugees, just arrived, with their precious bundles and suitcases. At 6' 2" tall, Yogi Harbhajan Singh towered over the milling crowd, looking for a familiar face. It was not there.

Yogi Harbhajan, master of patience, went within. An hour he waited, then reached in his pocket for the number of the man from the university who was to receive him. It was Friday afternoon, and he called the office of his sponsor. The secretary who picked up the phone had been expecting his call. She did not have good news. The professor had been involved in a serious traffic accident and died just the day before.

Harbhajan thanked the secretary and offered his condolences. Hanging up the pay phone, he reflected on the briefness of life and the inscrutable course of destiny.

What was he to do now? His employment and all his plans were up in the air. His luggage, so carefully selected and packed, was gone forever. There was not even anyone to receive him at the airport.

At that moment, the Word of the Siri Guru Granth Sahib came to Harbhajan Singh. The lines were from Guru Nanak's Japji Sahib:

"Kayti-aa dookh bhookh sad maar, ayeh bhi daat tayree daataar.
Band khalaasee bhaanai hoee, hor aakh na sakai koee,
Jay ko khaa-ik aakhan paaee, oho jaanai jaytee-aa mu-eh khaaee,
Aapay jaanai aapay dayee, aakheh si bhi kayee kayee,
Jis no bakhsay sifat saalaah, Naanak paatishaahe paatishaaho."

Translation:

"Whatever afflictions and deprivations might be, these too are your Gifts, O Bountiful One!
Freedom from bondage comes only by your Will. Nothing more can be said.
Any fool who presumes to know better shall live to eat his words.
He Himself knows and he Himself gives. Only a few acknowledge this.
That one fortunate to sing the Praises of the Lord, O Nanak is the King of kings!"

"So," Harbhajan the Yogi thought, "it is Your Gift. Thank you!"

Just then he saw the diminutive Canadian masseuse he had known in Delhi. She had made the arrangements for him to teach at the university. The woman had heard the news of the professor's accident and come to the airport alone to receive Harbhajan. Together they took a taxi to her apartment home where she had an extra bedroom prepared for her tired guest.

Fall was in the air. Soon the leaves would be changing colour. The Canada geese would be flying south. It would be Thanksgiving, Halloween, and soon after, the snow would fly.

Yogi Harbhajan Singh had arrived in another hemisphere, very different to what he had been accustomed to. The people here looked strangely blanched compared with the coffee-skinned people of Delhi. They spoke with a different accent, sometimes difficult for Harbhajan to understand. There were lots of cars here, but fewer people.

There was a whole new world for Harbhajan Yogi to explore, but after a little dinner with his hosts and a Kirtan Sohila to himself, it was time to put all this aside and rest for the coming adventure. (Excerpt from "Messenger from the Guru's House" commissioned by Yogi Bhajan in 1983. --

Download Yogi Bhajan's April 13, 1969 lecture here. http://www.sikhnet.com/files/attachments/events/yogi-bhajan-4-13-1969-talk.pdf)

Yogi Bhajan 1969


"There are three values.
Feel good. Be good. Do good."
Life According to Yogi Bhajan


Lyrics by Yogi Bhajan

Yogi Bhajan, Early '70s


Yogi Bhajan


Yogi Bhajan with wife, Bibiji Inderjit Kaur, right,
and Sat Simran Kaur, left rear


Shakti Parwha Kaur, left front, and Yogi Bhajan


Yogi Bhajan with wife, Bibiji Inderjit Kaur (right) and early staff members


Yogi Bhajan with Shakti Parwha Kaur, center, and Sat Simran Kaur


Yogi Bhajan with staff members


Yogi Bhajan with staff members and students


Sat Simran Kaur and Yogi Bhajan

Early Students of Yogi Bhajan


1969 © Lisa Law photo of Yogi Bhajan, with early yoga students. Some became 3HO teachers.
Far left, head down is Ruffin Cooper. Row next to him is top to bottom, Tom Law, Paul Erlich,
face partially hidden, Richie Moonchild, Steve Samuels, Reno Myerson at bottom. Far right,
next to Yogi Bhajan, is Larry Wentick, aka Lehri Singh, next to Jonie Moonchild, farthest right.
A recent respondent from New York reports that person's name, far right, bottom, is Steve (?).*
Question: Can you help identify more of these early students? If so, please contact us here.

*"The person who is at the bottom right is Steve (forget last name), my yoga teacher in Woodstock, NY, in 1970. He was giving free classes in the macrobiotic restaurant at 5 Rock City Road. I moved with him to NYC later in the year, with Yogi Bhajan's blessing. We had gone to Staten Island and talked to Yogiji on Ronnie Keith's house barge, who allowed Kundalini yogis to stay prior to embarking to India. We had a small ashram on Staten Island where we taught classes (also in Manhattan)." DG --


Yogi Bhajan teaching Kundalini Yoga at the Summer Solstice Sadhana
in Aspen Meadows near Santa Fe, New Mexico 1969 © Lisa Law

Chief Seattle's Vision

 

The Hopi Vision

Some of Yogi Bhajan's earliest students spent time in New Mexico and were influenced by Native American Hopi teachings. In June of 1969 Yogiji attended their summer solstice celebration at the Tesuque Indian reservation outside of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

At the 1970 Summer Solstice celebration, a group of Hopi elders arrived. They spoke of an ancient legend concerning the time before the end of the present age of darkness when a white-clad warrior would come from the East and create an army of warriors in white who would rise up and protect the "Unified Supreme Spirit." They held a sweat lodge ceremony and a sacred arrow was given in trust to him because the elders determined that Yogi Bhajan is the white-clad warrior.

Hopi Sun Spirit


Depiction of the Hopi's Tawa, the Creator

Seven years later, in 1977, Yogiji purchased a large parcel of land in the Jemez Mountains where the Hopis had indicated sacred gatherings had taken place for thousands of years, the last being over two thousand years ago. The Hopi elders said the land needed to be prepared so that "the Unified Supreme Spirit can once again be experienced by the great tribes and spread through all the people of the world." The land was named "Guru Ram Das Puri" (the Village of Guru Ram Das) and the annual 3HO Summer Solstice Sadhana celebration and festivities have occurred there every summer since. See Solstice Site Map. Since 1990, these have included a Hopi sacred prayer walk.

"Sadhana is a test of self-grit." -- Yogi Bhajan

The Hog Farm


The Hog Farm 'Road Hog'
El Rito, NM 1969 © Lisa Law


Hog Farm founder,
Wavy Gravy, today.

Before 3HO 1967
The Monterey Music Festival


Monterey Pop Festival, Monterey, CA, June 16-18, 1967

The Woodstock Music Festival

    
Woodstock Music Festival, Bethel, NY, August 1969 © Lisa Law


Lisa Law today © Lisa Law


Swami Satchidananda (2nd from left)
gave the opening address at Woodstock Music
Festival in Bethel, New York on August 15, 1969


Woodstock Festival attendees bathe au natural

Sitar in the rain, August, 1969
Ravi Shankar
at The Woodstock Music Festival


Sitar like you've never heard.

Tabla Solo
by Ustad Zakir Hussain


Tabla like you've never heard.

Yogiji's First of Several Visits To The Oakmont Lane House, Orlando

So many people showed up from nowhere it seemed, it was a real tight fit to say the least. The swimming pool in the back yard at the Oakmont Lane house ended up being used for bathing, and several holes were dug with shovels to accommodate “nature’s call” on numerous days, since the waiting-line for the one and only bathroom was always a good wait. Early on, Hari Singh became aware of the presence of pot on the premises, so he advised all the guests to dispose of any drugs while at the residence, especially with Yogiji as our very special house guest. Unfortunately, as a consequence, the only commode got plugged due to a bag or bags of pot being flushed.

Leisure Time with Yogi Bhajan

Yogiji would sit on the couch and visit with anyone who was around, and stayed several days, since he did not have a regular schedule in those days. At night, Yogiji slept in the third bedroom, and his secretary, Premka, slept on the floor. That bedroom was selected, because it had it’s own air conditioner, and could be regulated separately from the rest of the house, so the guest’s comfort could be guaranteed. It was Sat Kartar’s, our son's bedroom, and during that time he slept on the floor or wherever he could find a spot in our bedroom, as did our daughter Ong Kar. The other 20 plus people slept wherever they could. Usually it was side by side throughout the entire house. Some also slept on the back porch or the pool deck.

Most of the folks enjoyed acid rock music, but we preferred the music of the Mantovani Strings with full orchestra, and most of our 33-1/3 stereo recordings were of this easy-listening genre. Yogiji indicated that he really enjoyed this type of music, so we placed a sign on the stereo indicating, “This stereo is to be operated by the Birds only,” which ensured that Yogiji's favored music would be played. Yogiji indicated several times that he really appreciated the gesture.

On one occasion, a large boil had developed on Hari Kaur's forehead just prior to one of Yogiji's visits. When Yogiji saw the boil he advised Hari Kaur to slice an onion in half and to heat one half as hot as possible to the touch. He then applied the hot onion to the boil several times in succession and then popped the boil.

Yogiji introduced us all to the idea of showering each day in cold water. He taught that a daily cold shower does wonders for the nervous system. See Ishnaan, The Science of Hydrotherapy. See Guruka Singh's video. See "Got the Blues? Try a Cold Shower."

Yogiji also introduced Hari Kaur and those present to Ashiatsu or 'Back Walking' whereby the spine is realigned and a great deal of tension is released. The first time he applied this technique to Hari Kaur he registered shock at how much adjustment occurred. Hari Kaur has used this technique on receptive people ever since. It really feels great. See OnsiteFamilyHealthcare.com.

Taste Treats with Yogi Bhajan

On another occasion, Hari Singh introduced Yogiji to a special rice dish that he perfected as a young teenager. It's called Sopa Seca or just plain Sopa. It's made with 'tons' of garlic, and lots of onions and tomatoes. Yogiji could not get enough of this dish, and he requested, actually he ordered that Hari Singh prepare a batch of sopa whenever he visited Orlando. Yogiji in turn introduced everybody to things like his renowned Yogi Tea and beet and carrot cassarole. Then, there was avocado on toast with raw garlic, and some of his now famous spicy dishes, some almost too hot to handle. See SopaSeca.com.

Yogi Bhajan Amidst The Orange Blossoms

In 1970, during a Yogi Bhajan visit to Florida, a photographer by the name of Mikio Kuzumoto, a Kundalini Yoga student and active duty Major in the U.S. Air Force at the local airbase, took a series of exceptional photos of Yogiji in the courtyard of a church in Orlando. Yogiji had gone there to conduct a lecture and Kundalini Yoga class. The photos (see below) were taken before a background of blossoming orange trees on the church property. These photos are now in the possession of Sat Kartar Singh and Gurubachan Singh of Albuquerque, New Mexico.


Yogi Bhajan, Orlando, Florida 1969

On another occasion, Hari Kaur was looking out of the kitchen window into the back yard and the pool deck. On the deck, were Yogi John and a young woman, Noreen, in full lotus, both naked, being photographed by Mikio. Wondering what Yogiji would think of this, Hari Kaur called for him to come see, and when he looked, he rolled his eyes, shook his head from side to side, shrugged his shoulders, and just walked away without a word.

Yogiji's Unexpected Journey To Orlando

Another time, Yogiji had traveled to the Miami area. He called Hari Singh to say that he had been provided a ticket to Miami, paid for by a student, Suzanna. He was invited to teach Kundalini Yoga and meditation classes in Miami. (In those days, whenever he received a paid fare, he would travel just about anywhere to teach classes.)

So, according to Yogiji and Premka, his travel secretary, when he got to Miami, they were very surprised to have Suzanna make inappropriate advances. Yogiji told her he was interested only in teaching. Whereupon she insisted that he and Premka get out of her vehicle. She then sped away leaving them stranded at the side of the road. Yogiji and Premka hiked to a phone and called Hari Singh for assistance.

Then, while Hari Singh was preparing to leave for Miami, Yogiji again called and said that he and Premka had just enough money between them for a bus ticket to Orlando, and would he please meet them at the Orlando bus station, whereupon Hari Singh met them at the bus station and brought the weary travelers back to the “Bird’s Nest” (Yogiji's words) for a few days of rest and relaxation.

The West Palm Beach Pop Festival


Yogi Bhajan addressing festival attendees 1969

Yogi Bhajan's visit to the Florida Bird’s Nest in November of 1969 involved attending the Pop Festival, November 28-30, in West Palm Beach. Upon transporting Yogiji to the festival, the rains began, and it was a real gully-washer. Hari Kaur got out of the car with the children (3 and 5 years old at the time) and tried to follow the group into the festival. However, her sandals got sucked off by the 6 inches of mud (more like quicksand), so she gave it up and took the two soaking wet children back to the car where they all went to sleep waiting for the concert to finish. When Yogiji finished his presentation to the group of thousands of mostly young people we proceeded back to Orlando.

"It was cold, it was raining...it was definitely a war zone...
People were invited to come there and get naked...
These are beautiful people."

 


West Palm Beach Pop Festival, November 1969

   
Janis Joplin, at the West Palm Beach Pop Festival, November 1969


Woodstock Festival Poster, August 1969

Ancient Technologies

On occasion Yogiji could be seen rotating mala beads in his hand and we learned that this practice had a very practical as well as a deeply spiritual meaning that involved an ancient technology.

   
Yogi Bhajan with mala beads in hand


"Malas are used not just by Sikhs, but by members of
various religions
such as Islam, Roman Catholicism, Orthodox Christianity, Buddhism,
Hinduism, and Bahá'í to count the repetitions of sacred phrases,
mantras, shabads (prayers or hymns), chants and devotions."

We learned that the mala beads are used as an aid to meditation. The use of a mala can assist the mind to enter a meditative state. The mala beads are moved in rhythm with the breath and mantra, so that both sleep as well as excessive mental distraction can be prevented. See Meditation: How it works. See Healing Practice of Mudras.

Yogi Bhajan with The Children

Ong Kar, now of Herndon, VA, and Sat Kartar, now of Albuquerque NM, were in pre-school at this time, and Hari Singh, a licensed Optician, had lost his job with Winter Park Opticians after he began growing his hair and beard, which was especially unacceptable by many employers at the time of the Vietnam War.

When Yogiji came to Orlando for another teaching tour-visit, we advised that it was time to pick up the children from Montessori pre-school. We all walked to the school where Yogiji picked up the kids and carried one under each arm, and began playing with them. He indicated to Hari Singh that he really missed his personal family in India. His own children were older, but at least he could be a part of the Bird family since he was seldom able to go back to India to visit them and his wife.

We all later drove to Daytona Beach for a yoga class, and Yogiji took the kids on a ferris wheel ride. As they came over the top he loudly proclaimed it “the wheel of kaarmaaa.”

Yogi Bhajan and The Atlanta Pop Festival

In the summer of 1970, Yogi Bhajan participated in an informal "Holy Man Jam" at the University of Colorado at Boulder with Swami Satchidananda, Stephen Gaskin of The Farm in Tennessee, Zen Buddhist Bill Quan-roshi, and other local luminaries. A few weeks later, Yogi Bhajan carried that inspiration forward and organized a gathering of spiritual teachers to engage and inspire the 200,000 attendees of the Atlanta Pop Festival on the stage between the performances of the bands.

M.S.S. Livtar Singh Khalsa tells of when he accompanied the Yogi Bhajan, aka, Siri Singh Sahib, to the Atlantic Pop Festival. Livtar Singh said there were a half dozen, or so, different self proclaimed gurus at the event, and all of them were scheduled to go on stage to speak before the Siri Singh Sahib. However the kids were restless, impatient for the concert to begin, many were getting high, and no one paid much attention to guru after guru going onto stage and talking in their quite broken English about how they should meditate.

Then it was finally time for the Siri Singh Sahib to go on stage. Livtar Singh said it was profound to see how within ten minutes or so he had everyone chanting together, singing Sat Nam and moving their arms in what we now call celestial communication.

Afterwards, Livtar Singh asked him, "Sir, I do not understand what happened. You came on stage to an unreceptive crowd and spoke in the same broken English as the others, and yet the result was so different. Why? What do you know, what is your secret."

Livtar Singh said he answered with just one word: "Sadhana."

Shakti Parwha Kaur Khalsa

      
Shakti Parwha Kaur 1969, 2008, and 2011
See The Beginning of 3HO by Shakti Parwha Kaur.

The Vietnam War


Self-immolation protest of Buddhist monk, Thich Quang Duc,
June 11, 1963 (AP Photo/Malcomb Brown)


U.S. troops on Hill 37, Hamburger Hill, South Vietnam, May 20, 1969


Kim Phuc, center, running with siblings from
napalm attack, June 8, 1972 (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

Little Kim Phuc saw the tails of yellow and purple smoke bombs curling around the Cao Dai temple where her family had sheltered for three days, as North and South Vietnamese forces fought for control of their village.

This June 8, 1972 file photo, above, is of crying children, including 9-year-old Kim Phuc, center, running down Route 1 near Trang Bang, Vietnam after an aerial napalm attack on suspected Viet Cong hiding places as South Vietnamese forces from the 25th Division walk behind them. A South Vietnamese plane accidentally dropped its flaming napalm on South Vietnamese troops and civilians.

From left, the children are Phan Thanh Tam, younger brother of Kim Phuc, who lost an eye, Phan Thanh Phouc, youngest brother of Kim Phuc, Kim Phuc, and Kim's cousins Ho Van Bon, and Ho Thi Ting.

In this photo, the girl will always be remembered as the little 9-year-old wailing “Too hot! Too hot!” as she runs down the road away from her burning Vietnamese village.

It only took a second for Associated Press photographer Huynh Cong “Nick” Ut to snap this iconic black-and-white image. It communicated the horrors of the Vietnam War in a way words could never describe, helping to end one of the most divisive wars in American history.


Kim Phuc 2006


Kim Phuc with her child

Yogi Bhajan Reaching Out


Yogi Bhajan reaches out to Swami Satchidananda


Steve Gaskin - The Farm, Yogi Bhajan - 3HO, Swami Satchidananda - Integral Yoga
Speaking to the audience at Holy Man Jam, Boulder, CO June 1970 © Lisa Law


Youths hanging out at Holy Man Jam, Boulder, CO June 1970


Youths exalting at Holy Man Jam, Boulder, CO, June 1970
Photo by Robert Altman

The First 3HO Winter Solstice Sadhana

"Sadhana is a test of self-grit." -- Yogi Bhajan

In December 1971, in preparation for the first 3HO Winter Solstice Sadhana, Yogi John arranged for the gathering to occur at the newly acquired ashram in a residential area called Pine Hills, in western metro-Orlando, on a very small pond. Hari Singh, who was then employed by the Orange County Health Department as an anti-drug, youth counselor and yoga teacher at Thee Door, advised against holding the Winter Solstice Sadhana gathering at the Pine Hills location.

The site was seen as being too small and without adequate facilities and permits. Yogi John however, indicated that he preferred not to engage any “establishment red tape” with the authorities and that despite Hari Singh's advice he would proceed as planned.

A few days later, on Friday, the 17th, when people began arriving to set up for the Solstice gathering, the neighbors immediately began complaining, and calling Orange County officials. The Orange County Sheriff’s office sent two deputies to the Pine Hills ashram location. Subsequently, a call went to Dr. Wilfred Sisk, Hari Singh's boss, the medical director of the Orange County Health Department, because of health risk concerns and prospective code violations at the site.

Yogiji took charge of the scene and phoned Hari Singh to engage the situation and lend any assistance in order to mitigate the dilemma. Shortly after Hari Singh and a colleague from Thee Door arrived at the Pine Hills ashram, Yogiji directed Yogi John to contact the Green Acres Mobile Home Park about 4-5 miles away. Arrangements were made and Yogi John advised all the Solstice arrivals of plans to move the Winter Solstice to the Green Acres site.

The Winter Solstice Sun at Stonehenge

The Orlando Sentinel-Winter Solstice Article
Courtesy of
Livtar Singh Khalsa


Orange County Health Department staff members from Thee Door,
left, Herb Brockman with Hari Singh, and Yogi Bhajan, far right 1971

We returned to the Pine Hills ashram with the kids in the early evening intending to drive to the site in a caravan. Upon arrival, Yogiji met us and directed the four of us to take him in our little VW Bug to the Green Acres campsite, which was located at 9701 S. State Road 434, on Forest City Road in Seminole County, before its demise in the late '90s or early 2000.

He directed us to catch up with the lead vehicle at the head of the caravan, which required us to encounter considerable numbers of oncoming traffic on the narrow two-lane rode. It was turning dark, and when we got to the head of the column we approached a fork in the road. Yogiji asked for our flashlight and directed us to stop the car.

He then got out of the car and proceeded to direct the following caravan to the right fork that led to the site, waving the flashlight, whereupon he jumped back into our VW and directed us to proceed to the front of the column again before we reached Green Acres, which was about a 10-15 minute drive from the Pine Hills Ashram. What a great ride! What a great night! What a great Winter Solstice!

3HO Winter Solstice 1971


Ong Kar and Sat Kartar prepare for Solstice at Green Acres campsite, 1971


Yogi Bhajan and Hari Kaur Bird at Winter Solstice, December, 1971
Photo courtesy of TorontoKundaliniYoga.com

      

3HO First Family 1972


Kulbir Singh, Kamaljit Kaur, Yogi Bhajan, Inderjit Kaur and Ranbir Singh
at the Baba Siri Chand Ashram, Altamonte Springs, FL, outside Orlando


Kamaljit Kaur, Ranbir Singh and Kulbir Singh
Baba Siri Chand Ashram, Altamonte Springs, FL


Inderjit Kaur and Yogi Bhajan
Baba Siri Chand Ashram, Altamonte Springs, FL

3HO Winter Solstice 2012

3HO Orlando Ashram Resident
Suchitar Singh, Orlando, 1971


Suchitar Singh

"Yogi John Twombly told me the way he met Yogi Bhajan is he was hiking through the California mountains in June of 1969 and walked up on the Summer Solstice. And I attended the Celebration of Life rock festival in rural Louisiana between Alexandria and Baton Rouge, in July of 1971. I went to a few of Yogi John's classes and I moved into the Pine Hills ashram in Orlando a few days after I turned 18. I went to the first Winter Solstice at Green Acres in December, 1971." -- Suchitar Singh

The Celebration of Life Music Festival

 
Celebration of Life rock festival, rural Louisiana, July 1971

Solstice Sadhana - A Spiritual Retreat

Solstice Security


Kundalini Yoga class at 3HO Solstice Sadhana

Yogi Bhajan was a former Indian Army officer and Customs official. From the very beginning, he stressed the importance of Security, Safety and Service (Seva) as an important exercise in Group Consciousness.

Around-the-clock Security at all Solstice camp entrances and exits was SOP, Standard Operating Procedure. This included Security Sevadars wearing red or yellow armbands, checking everyone's camp-authorized ID, and everybody signing in and out when entering and exiting the campground.

We had around-the-clock roving or stationary-post Security Sevadars assigned to all camp areas including the camp perimeter, registration center, tantric stage, merchant's bizarre area, kitchen and food stock areas, showers and toilets, children's camp, medical tent, and the tent camp area. Sevadars wore special arm bands and carried whistles and flashlights. Their duties included hazard alerts, traffic control and rendering assistance to Solstice attendees with special eyes-and-ears attention to all security issues. See Solstice Security General Protocols. See Solstice Rules of Conduct. See proposed Solstice Security Organizational Structure.


Hari Singh, right, on security duty for Yogiji, left, with
unknown student, center, Winter Solstice, Florida 1980


Sat Kartar Singh, left, on security duty for Yogi Bhajan, right,
during Summer Solstice celebration, Espanola, New Mexico 1992

SOLSTICE SECURITY
According to Hari Singh Bird

"Sir, what is your priority for this occasion?"
Yogi Bhajan, "Security, Security, Security!"

It is a "sacred duty, without fear or anger, to defend the
weak and protect the innocent." GurdwaraSecurity.com

"Forgiveness doesn't mean you forget what happened...
If something is serious and it is necessary to take counter-
measures, you have to take counter-measures." Dalai Lama

"Don't secure me, secure my environments." Yogi Bhajan

Why do we need to secure environments? See The 12 Signs of Kali Yuga.

Security is those actions or systems, which prevent or minimize
the occurrence of adverse events within Solstice environments.

GENERAL PROTOCOLS*
FOR SENTRIES AT ALL SECURITY TEAM STATIONS

1. To take charge of this Security Station and all Solstice property in view. (See Flow Chart.)

2. To walk my Security Station in an attentive manner, keeping always on the alert and observing everything that takes place within sight or hearing. (See Flow Chart.)

3. To report all violations of orders I am instructed to implement. (See Flow Chart.)

4. To repeat all calls from Sentries more distant from the Security Office than my own.

5. To quit my Security Station only when properly relieved.

6. To receive, obey, and pass on to the Sentry who relieves me, all orders from Officers of the Security Team and any messages from other Sentries.

7. To talk to no one while on my Security Station, except in the line of duty.

8. To give the alarm in case of fire, medical emergency or disorder.

9. To call the Shift Captain, in any case not covered by instructions.

10. To be especially watchful at night, and during the time for confronting, to question all persons on or near my Security Station and to allow no one to pass without proper authority.

11. To act respectfully, and with grace at all times.

12. To act only in ways as to provide Safe and Secure Environments whereby Solstice participants may practice the teachings of Yogi Bhajan, and in order that they may be inspired, and empowered to have a Healthy, Happy, Holy Solstice experience.

*GENERAL PROTOCOLS for Sentries at all Security Stations are based on the United States Marine Corps General Orders for Military Posts. Ram Dhan Singh Khalsa and Hari Singh Bird Khalsa, former U.S. Marines, compiled the above General Protocols especially for implementation at Winter and Summer Solstices.

SPECIAL OPERATING PROTOCOLS (SOPs) are additional Protocols for Sentries at specific Security Stations. These are based on conditions, which are unique to a particular Security Station, local requirements, or changing circumstances. SOPs are policies formulated and disseminated by Solstice Management for implementation by the Security Team members. SOPs will be appropriately displayed for access by all Security Team members. In addition to SOPs, Shift Captains may give additional verbal and-or written orders, as necessary.

IMPORTANT

SOLSTICE SERVICE EXCHANGE IS NOW AVAILABILE. The Solstice Security Team is responsible for the physical safety and well-being of the participants and the camp. The primary duties of the Security Team are to staff the camp entrance, monitor the flow of traffic (both pedestrian and vehicular) into and out of camp, patrol the entire camp, act as an information resource for all attendees, maintain order in the parking areas, and coordinate with other service areas, local law enforcement, and emergency response teams in the event of an emergency. Through the successful completion of our duties we hold the space for a peaceful and joyous camp experience for all.

NOTE: If you wish to serve as a member of the Solstice Security Team, contact us here. No previous security experience is necessary. All service exchange members will be trained.

Security Team members are expected to rotate among the different posts. This is the only team service that operates 24 hours, which gives you a great opportunity to complete your exchange hours while no camp activities are taking place. You may be seated at the Front Gate or in the office, or walking around camp patrolling the Bazaar and tenting areas. See Google Map. We are the first people that participants see as they arrive on-site and highly visible in camp while on shift; the priority is to be welcoming, knowledgeable, and firm. You must be able to give direction and hold boundaries regarding requests for information from participants, badge display, parking and other security concerns. Security Team members exercise interpersonal communication skills while implementing and adhering to all Solstice policies and Rules of Conduct as established by Yogi Bhajan. To learn more about the Solstice Security Team requirements, visit Interior-Guard.com.

Psalm of The Sant Sipahi - The Saint Soldier

"Human is a blend of saint and soldier; this is a complete person. If you
are not a soldier your sainthood will be kicked around. If you are only a
soldier, not a saint, you will start kicking others around."
Yogi Bhajan

It was a real challenge getting volunteers, especially for security duty, since it involved around-the-clock shifts. But then we adopted rotating schedules. This allowed Security Team Members to attend at least some of Yogiji's lectures and the White Tantric Yoga sessions.

A spirit of cooperation between individuals allowed Sevadars to participate in other camp activities. This spirit has been an important part of the Solstice Sadhana experience from the very beginning.

Over the years, more experienced staff members, including Security Team volunteers (apply here) with previous Solstice experience, have organized and implemented the Solstice Rules of Conduct, Solstice diet, and all aspects of the Solstice Security, Safety and Service programs. See Who Is Responsible For Your Security. See ToServeIsToSucceed.com.

SOLSTICE SADHANA IS A SPIRITUAL RETREAT

THE SOLSTICE SADHANA DIET
Changes your body chemistry
Established by Yogi Bhajan

The Solstice Diet is a simple, nutritious, and cleansing yogic vegetarian diet (much of the diet is vegan). Yogi Bhajan designed this diet to support the Solstice experience. The spicy soup for breakfast and spicy mung beans and rice served at dinner are part of his recommendations. Note: A non-spicy version of the soup and dinner dish is available to anyone who cannot tolerate spicy food.

Organic Food Upgrade

Meals are included in the registration fee, and much of the food at Solstice is organic. However, we’ve had overwhelming requests for more organic food. If you prefer eating organic, please contribute to the support of organics at Solstice.

Bring reusable/washable cups, dishes, utensils, and cloth napkins for your own use at meals. Cups, dishes, and utensils may be purchased on-site.

Menu

Breakfast: A potato, celery, and onion soup is served with bananas and oranges on the side.

Lunch: Quinoa tabouli, hummus, stuffed grape leaves, tortillas (Special note: Because Yogi Bhajan did not design a specific lunch menu, this meal may vary somewhat.)

Dinner: Mung beans and rice with lettuce, steamed beets and carrots, and hot sauce served on the side. A special meal is served for dinner on the night before camp ends. See Recipe.

Solstice Soup

   
Solstice Sauce, and Mung Beans and Rice

Yogi Tea: Yogi Tea with soy milk or cow’s milk (upon request) will be served twice daily: after Sadhana and nightly at the Yogi Tea Café. There are also hot water and alternative Yogi Tea options provided all day long. On White Tantric Yoga days, Golden Milk will be added to the menu. Golden Milk is a traditional recipe for joint health. It is a delicious combination of milk, turmeric, cardamom, and almond oil.

Special Dietary Needs: If you have special dietary concerns, we cannot support them in the kitchen. You may bring dry foods, however please do not bring anything that requires refrigeration. We also suggest you keep any food items in a tight lidded container so animals cannot get into it.

See Solstice Morning Practice. See Solstice Rules of Conduct.
See Interior-Guard, the Solstice Guard Service. Want to volunteer for Service with the Solstice Guard? Check here first. See Sadhana Guidelines by Jot Singh Khalsa.

"It takes 40 days to break a habit;
90 days to gain the new habit;
120 days and you are the new habit;
1,000 days and you are Master of it."

The Adi Shakti de Guadalupe Mural


Adi Shakti de Guadalupe painting on ashram wall at
Hacienda de Guru Ram Das Ashram, Espanola, NM


2013 gathering of 3HO Legacy Teachers at
Hacienda de Guru Ram Das Ashram, Espanola, NM

Guru Singh's Solstice Sadhana Wake Up Song
Rise Up, Rise Up Sweet Family Dear
By M.S.S. Guru Singh Khalsa

 


Guru Singh singing 'Rise Up' at Summer Solstice

The Sing-a-Long Lyrics

Rise up, rise up, sweet family dear
A time of the Lord and rememberin'
Love is here
Love, love is all you'll say
If you'll awake and rise up right away
Hey, hey
If you'll awake and rise up right away

Rise up, rise up, sweet family dear
The time of the Lord and rememberin'
Love is here
Love, love is all you'll say
If you'll awake and rise up right away

Lord will bless you so many ways
If you will rise up right now
Sing His praise

Rise up, rise up, sweet family dear
Time of the Lord and rememberin'
Love is here
Love, love is all you'll say
If you'll awake and rise up right away
Hey, hey

If you'll awake and rise up right away

Rise up, rise up, sweet family dear
A time of the Lord and rememberin'
Love is here
Love, love is all you'll say
If you'll awake and rise up right away
Hey, hey

If you'll awake and rise up right away
Hey, hey

If you'll awake and rise up right away

Lord will bless you so many ways
If you will rise up right now
Sing His praise

Rise up, rise up, sweet family dear
Time of the Lord and rememberin'
Love is here
Love, love is all you'll say
If you'll awake and rise up right away

If you'll awake and rise up right away
If you'll awake and rise up right away
If you'll awake and rise up right away --

I Am Who I Am That Is That

More about Guru Singh

The Early 1970s


1972 issue of the 3HO Beads of Truth


Yogi Bhajan teaching in the '70s
Washington, DC, Courtesy Shiva Singh Khalsa


3HO students at early '70s class taught by Yogi Bhajan
Front row, (L to R), Gurujot Singh and Dr. Sant Singh. Third row
center, is Guruperkarma Kaur, with Harimandir Singh, Ottawa, to her
left. Contact us here if you can identify any more of these students.


Yogi Bhajan with Ganga Bhajan Kaur and
daughter, Kamaljit Kaur and company in the early '70s


Summer Solstice Sadhana, Pecos, NM 1976
Courtesy Shiva Singh Khalsa

Yoga Classes at Orange County Jail and Thee Door

During the 1970-1972 time frame Hari Singh taught Kundalini Yoga classes in the Orange County Jail as a part of an Orange County, Florida initiative called 'Thee Door', an anti-drug, youth outreach program of the Orange County Health Department. Hari Singh coined 'Thee Door' as the name of the program.

In 1971 Governor Reuben Askew appointed a visionary* figure, Mel Coleman, to succeed retiring Sheriff Dave Starr (photo), who was an alleged Ku Klux Klan figure. Sheriff Coleman authorized unprecedented access by Thee Door counselors to serve the jail population, mostly drug offending inmates, which included the teaching of Kundalini Yoga and meditation by Hari Singh, inside the jail.

The program was administered from Health Department facilities on West Central Avenue, in a former grade school building just west of downtown Orlando, where Hari Singh also conducted Kundalini Yoga classes and counseling. Thee Door was under the direction of Dr. Wilfred Sisk, the Orange County Health Officer, another visionary who initiated the program. It later came under the supervision of his appointee, Marge Jackson.

*Note: The time frame of these events was the late '60s - early '70s in the Deep South during much civil rights unrest. According to the Orlando Sentinel, "Former Orange County Sheriff Dave Starr, who served from 1949 to 1971, was identified as a Klansman in sworn statements to the FBI. So was former Apopka police Chief William Dunnaway and other powerful county and city officials who ran local government agencies decades ago. These affiliations were documented when the Orlando Sentinel obtained decades-old FBI records in 1991, e.g., "Southern police departments were filled with Klansmen and Klan sympathizers in the '50s and '60s, according to Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center."

During this time, Yogi Bhajan made plans to again visit Orlando on a Florida teaching tour. Hari Singh advised the student inmates well in advance of Yogiji's possible visit inside the jail, which generated all kinds of excitement. After Yogiji arrived and was granted clearance to enter the jail, he spent almost an hour of quality time with the inmates inside their classroom cell, an experience they long remembered.

Destination Denver

The head teacher at the Denver, CO ashram resigned in late 1972. Yogi Bhajan contacted Hari Singh at the December, 1972, 3HO Winter Solstice Sadhana and asked that he fly to Denver to check out the possibility of moving there to fill the vacancy, which he did.

Upon his return, Hari Singh learned that the Health Department office building had burned to the ground and that there were no immediate plans to rebuild the structure. The Hari's saw this development as a significant indicator of the direction of their destiny, whereupon they put their Orlando residence up for sale and subsequently moved to Denver in February of 1973.

Yogi Bhajan, in his role as the Siri Singh Sahib, ordained Hari Singh and Hari Kaur as Sikh ministers, i.e., Singh Sahib and Sardarni Sahiba of Sikh Dharma respectively, September 1, 1973, in Denver, Colorado. He later proclaimed Hari Singh to be Mukhia Singh Sahib of Sikh Dharma in April, 1978, in Los Angeles, California.

Early Kundalini Yoga Sets


From 1973 issue of 3HO Beads of Truth

Summer Solstice 1973


3HO Summer Solstice Sadhana, June 1973

The First House of Guru Ram Das in Denver, Colorado


Residents of the first 3HO Denver, CO ashram at 2073 S. Clayton Street 1973

There were several 3HO students living in the rented Clayton Street ashram in Denver who were operating Hanuman's Conscious Cookery restaurant (later renamed Golden Temple Conscious Cookery) on University Boulevard just around the corner from the Denver University campus. See I replaced drugs with Kundalini Yoga.

The Second House of Guru Ram Das in Denver, Colorado


House of Guru Ram Das, Denver, Colorado 1974


House of Guru Ram Das, Denver, Colorado, May 17, 2014

Within a few months the Hari's purchased a larger two-story brick home at 1072 Josephine Street across from the Denver Botanical Gardens, in which to house the residents of the 3HO ashram known as the House of Guru Ram Das.

A short time later, the Hari's children, Ong Kar Kaur and Sat Kartar Singh, left for grade school at Nanak's 5th Centennial School in Mussorie, India for one school year, in 1974. This experience gave them valuable insights, which have remained with them to this day.

Ong Kar Kaur and Sat Kartar Singh in India 1973


India Prime Minister Indira Gandhi is shown sitting between Bibiji and Yogiji with
Sat Kartar Singh, front row, third from left, next to Ong Kar Kaur, India, 1973
(Note: See if you can identify more 3HO Legacy Teachers than are shown here.)

Our Son's Letter From India

Some years later, upon visiting India again, Sat Kartar sent a letter and a photo home dated January 8, 1991, which reads in part:

"At Paonta Sahib, there was this old man that stayed in a corner on the 2nd stoop. He faced the Gurdwara. He was dressed in a white turban, white beard, and white body wrap. He had a bowl, mat, blanket and cane.


The little old man of Paonta Sahib

His clothes and possessions were grayed from dirt. The slow dirt. The dirt from little washing and a lot of time, his brown skin actually made his clothing seem white now that I think about it. In any event, his life was Bani and Shabad (to do with Sacred Words and Sacred Songs).

At 3 AM, the loud speaker would crackle with the beginning of the banis. His eyes were alive, deep and projective. And his manner was kind. He spoke to me as if he knew me. He was very warm. Very simple. And humble.

His existence seemed to echo Guru Gobind Singh’s statements. He was content only because his circumstances allowed him the opportunity to continually connect.

His struggle for happiness was dissolved as long as he was at the feet of the Guru. That was prosperity to him. The nectar of the Name." --

The 8:50 Laugh-ins
Ten-til-Nine-Fests


3HO Denver-Boulder ashram residents 1975
(L to R) Rear: Darshan Singh, Kirpal Singh, Meher Singh and Hari Singh
(L to R) Middle: Far left, Sat Data Singh, Kirpal Kaur and Ghansham Singh
(L to R) Front: Guru Roop Kaur, Shakti Kaur, Ong Kar Kaur, Siri Simrat Kaur (Nancy)

It seemed like almost every evening after dinner and after yoga class the residents would gather somewhere in the ashram, the sadhana room, the kitchen, or elsewhere for a 'laugh-in'. Somebody would share an incident of their day or a story and all those present would engage in banter and laughter. Then, invariably, someone would look at the clock or their watch and announce the time. Almost always, it was 8:50, and this would set off another round of giddiness. Very funny and interestingly curious phenomenon.

The Khalsa String Band

The Khalsa String Band came to Denver for a concert in 1975 and entertained patrons at the Golden Temple Conscious Cookery. The restaurant closed later in that year when the ashram residents initiated other enterprises more in line with the group energy.

The '70s also saw the arrival in Denver of Guru Maharaji, the juvenile spiritual teacher from Dehra Dun, India, who established the Divine Light Mission organization in Denver. This was also the time when Mahareshi Mahesh and The Beatles, Baba Ram Dass, Timothy Leary, Alan Watts, Swami Satchidananda and others were gaining influence with the youth of the day.


KSB created this LP album in 1973


Guru Maharaji poster


Mahareshi Mahesh, center, with The Beatles '67-'68

The Denver Ashram Expands To The Suburbs

The Hari's purchased an additional personal residence in 1976, on a cul-de-sac in Aurora, CO, a suburb of Denver at 17490 East Gunnison Place, with the intention of creating a community of separate, clustered, satellite residences.

The ashram residents began marrying and the need to expand their living area became apparent. The 3HO Washington, DC ashram subsequently adopted this same concept in Herndon, Virginia following a visit to the Denver area and the Aurora house by Lehri Singh and his wife Ganga Bhajan Kaur.

Yogiji's Clandestine Visit To Aurora, Colorado

At one point in the late '70s there were serious reports of a plot to assassinate Yogiji to wit he came to the Aurora house for some days under clandestine circumstances, i.e., nobody knew of his whereabouts except the Birds. Yogiji would speak only cryptically to his staff on the phone so nobody could figure out where he was hold up. At one point he was heard to tell Hari Har Kaur on the phone, "I'm at the house where the water flows under the table," referring to a uniquely made coffee table with an attached water fall underneath. The Hari's even provided Yogiji with a key to their home in the event it was ever needed again as a Safe House. Yogiji commented at the time, "You know, Hari Singh, this is the only key I have to a home. I don't even have a key to my own."

The Healers...
Hanna and Harvey

Not all doctors are healers.
Not all healers are doctors.

In 1974 Hari Kaur had the good fortune to meet Hanna Kroeger in Boulder with regard to some health issues. Hanna was well known as a healer and health educator. She was the proprietor of Hanna's Herb Shop in Boulder and was the subject of considerable controversy among the established medical community. (Hanna passed away in May of 1998.)

After seeing Hari Kaur, Hanna recommended that she visit a man "with X-ray vision" (her words), named Harvey Bevier, a former World War II bomber pilot, who was a visionary mystic and shaman-healer in Denver. He normally provided his treatments out of a small residence on Hooker Street.

Hari Kaur's successful treatments at the hands of Harvey turned out to be the beginning of a very special relationship between Harvey and the entire 3HO Denver-Boulder community.


Hanna Kroeger

   
        Harvey Bevier in his 70s            Helen R. and Harvey J. Bevier 1940s

Later, the Hari's introduced Harvey to Yogi Bhajan during one of Yogiji's meditation and White Tantric Yoga teaching tours in the Denver area. Harvey treated Yogi Bhajan thereafter with his special 'karate chiropractic' procedures at the Denver ashram on several of Yogiji's visits. In fact, the first time Harvey applied his moves to Yogiji, a much larger man, Yogiji registered his surprise at Harvey's ability to effortlessly lift him off the stool. Yogiji's response, a resounding, "Wow!"

At one point, Hari Singh asked Harvey about his characteristic navel-setting cough each time he applied one of his many body-aligning moves. Harvey said that the practice was taught to him by his teacher in order to prevent any over-adjustment in the application of his technique. Yogiji later said that Harvey employed a kind of treatment use by the ancient Egyptians thousands of years ago. He was so impressed with Harvey's treatments that he always insisted on seeing him whenever he came to Denver.

Harvey came to the Denver ashram one Sunday each month for a while to treat those who wanted to see him. He never charged a fee, but folks always left sizable offerings for his services. Harvey passed away in December of 1993.

White Tantric Yoga


White Tantric lines at a recent White Tantric Course

White Tantric Yoga Meditation

Our thoughts can go through three stages in the subconscious mind, negative, positive and neutral. The negative mind protects us by telling us what could be the possible danger or loss in any situation. The positive mind inspires us by telling what could be the possible gain. In ideal situations the neutral mind listens to both and leads us to the best decision.

The subconscious mind releases one thousand thoughts per wink of the eye. These thoughts when processed through the negative, positive, and neutral minds allow us to truly relate to each moment as it exists, to see and act on each moment with clarity.

Thoughts get stuck in the subconscious mind and hinder clear thinking. White Tantric Yoga works to remove these subconscious blocks. Rather than making decisions based on fear, anger, depression, or past experiences, we have a clearer understanding of our self, and experience personal freedom. This freedom and clarity will bring more success to all areas of our lives.

How it Works

Through the theory of relativity we understand that matter can be transformed into energy and energy can be transformed into matter. Using diagonal “Z” energy, Yogi Bhajan connects his subtle body to the subtle body of the participants through the course facilitator. This system works exactly as the world wide telephone system which relies on satellites in order to connect two parties.

Envision energy in the universe as parallel and perpendicular in nature, like a cloth woven together. As a cloth becomes stronger when it is stretched on the diagonal, so this White Tantric energy is diagonal or “Z” energy. This energy, when directed by the Mahan Tantric, cuts through the blocks that are stuck in the subconscious mind.

White Tantric is done in pairs as a group meditation, and gives one a connection to their spiritual self. Participants sit facing each other. Each course consists of between six and eight kriyas (meditations incorporating breath, a yoga posture or hand position, mental focus and sometimes a mantra – sound current), accompanied by music. These can vary in length from eleven to sixty two minutes. There are breaks between each kriya and a lunch break during the day. The atmosphere is friendly, relaxed and very uplifting.

“A Kundalini Yoga kriya is a sequence of postures, breath and sound that are integrated together to allow the manifestation of a particular state. When you execute a kundalini kriya the result of its repetition is the access to, and mastery of a particular, predictable and stable state – a facet of your awareness.” The Aquarian Teacher

There are no prerequisites for practicing White Tantric Yoga. Beginners will tune in to their internal energies and enjoy a deep and sometimes challenging meditative experience. More advanced practitioners will deepen their experience of meditation and make inroads into their own spiritual awareness.

White Tantric Yoga should not be confused with Black or Red Tantric Yoga. These forms of yoga also transform energy, but in a different way and for a different purpose. Black Tantric directs the energy to manipulate another human beings, and Red Tantric Yoga directs the energy solely for sexual purposes. See IsolatedSeer.com.


   

   
White Tantric Yoga course in session

The Voice of An Angel

During the '70s Hari Singh taught Kundalini Yoga and meditation classes in several Colorado locations including the state and federal prisons. At this time Singh Kaur Khalsa was a resident at the Denver House of Guru Ram Das and she accompanied Hari Singh on numerous occasions to these classes. Singh Kaur had a crystal-clear, angelic voice and presence. She led the meditation portion of the classes with her voice and her guitar.


Singh Kaur
Photo courtesy of Sahib-Amar Kaur

The Transformation of Me Into We

Utilizing his training and experience as a Drill Instructor while a member of the Marine Corps Reserve, Hari Singh incorporated aspects of close order drill into the Denver ashram early morning sadhana in the '70s, as a means of stimulating and maintaining maximum group participation.

Yogi Bhajan subsequently asked Hari Singh to travel to the Phoenix, AZ and San Francisco, CA ashrams in 1978 to lead close order drill as a part of the ashram resident's early morning sadhana experience. ("If you cannot walk together, you cannot work together." Yogi Bhajan)

During Hari Singh's Phoenix visit an incident occurred whereby the formation of ashram residents were drilling during early morning (before sunrise) sadhana in a nearby park. A lady resident of the ashram was carrying her infant daughter. At some point during the maneuvers and because of her desire to participate in the group activity she secured the sleeping infant on a park table thinking that the group would remain in close proximity. Hari Singh however, marched the formation some distance away unaware of the child's circumstances. The park police on routine patrol happened to find the child just as the formation returned to the area. Guru Liv Singh, the head of the Phoenix ashram, and Hari Singh had a lot of explaining to do in order to satisfy the park police as to what was going on after which the group, with the child safely in tow, marched back to the ashram for the conclusion of morning sadhana.

Also, in the late '70s and early '80s, at the request of Yogi Bhajan, Hari Singh served as the Drill Master for the Select Rifle Drill Team at the 3HO Women's Training Camp, formerly Khalsa Women's Training Camp (KWTC), Espanola, NM, now the International Women's Camp, IWC. See an inspiring account of one woman's Drill Team experience at the Khalsa Women's Training Camp.


Yogi Bhajan teaching at 3HO Women's Training Camp

"It is incumbent on those who know, to teach those who do not know." -- Hari Singh

TESTIMONIAL

Sat Nam. Here's a testimonial from Anthony Chapman, a former resident of the 3HO Ottawa ashram, regarding then ashram director, Baba Singh.

The Kundalini Yoga posters you put up all over downtown Ottawa in 1972 really got my attention. Remember the one with the Tratakam photo of a young Yogi Bhajan looking intensely straight out at you? I didn’t know much about yoga at the time but I wanted to learn more and this guy looked like he meant business. I took note of the location: the room number for the class seemed auspicious then--Pestalozzi College, Room 2001. (A Yoga Odyssey?)

The first class blew me away. The yoga was so powerful and challenging, I couldn’t get enough. I attended every class you offered. From the beginning, I remember you urging us again and again to “Breathe!” and to “Keep Up!” You wanted us to know we could complete any exercise and by extension, anything in life--if we were determined enough. (Believe me, I needed every bit of encouragement to complete those monumental leg lift sets.)

When I didn’t have a place to live, you and Baba Kaur offered me space in the living room of your one bedroom apartment at the college. I jumped at the chance to be in your company and to practice sadhana together. Other students felt the same way. To make group sadhana a reality--and I suspect, to get me off your living room sofa--you established a 3HO ashram in Ottawa.

I remember the early morning routine in the ashram when you came around to wake us all for sadhana: “Sat Nam, time to get up.” First, it was stretch pose by the bed, then head down to the basement where the other men were already lining up for the daily cold shower. We were young and fierce then and kept the shower as cold as possible--and in Ottawa in January that meant ‘glacier-cold.’ I remember the feel of almond oil still on my skin after the shower; the rich smells of yogi tea, curry, and other spices as I paused in the kitchen to drink several glasses of water; and the permanent scent of incense in the sadhana room as we started our warm-up exercises in the dark.

Like your classes, Baba Singh, the sadhanas you led were challenging but always rewarding. You kept me up through the daily 2 ½ hour practice, especially the 31 minutes of Sat Kriya and 62 minutes of long Ek Ong Kar. I remember your voice picking up the pace if our chanting started to slow down or sound tired some mornings. (Note to self: Next time, choose the early evening movie.) You used to say that yoga is supposed to make you feel centered--not high. Can I finally admit that after sadhana I frequently felt a little high? And, has anything ever tasted better than simple homemade yogurt, almonds, and bananas after sadhana?

It makes me smile to think that at about 24 years of age then, you were the “old” guy among us. But you had more than a few extra years of experience: you had wisdom and a rock-solid character that never wavered under pressure. I never saw you become emotional, irritated, or negative, regardless of the situation and despite our constant questions and the occasional dramas we laid on you. You kept a sense of humor throughout and your laugh was so warm, infectious, and worth waiting for.

Your straightforward, rational view of things never encouraged any illusions about the level of commitment required to make spiritual progress. At the same time, you knew how to put the discipline in perspective. I recall once you said that people “out there” say we have a difficult lifestyle in the ashram. You said simply, “We don’t have it so hard; they’re the ones who have a tough time.” I understand fully now what you meant.

Whenever I pass by the ashram’s first location on Second Avenue, I think of you and how it was back then. I realize the passage of time tends to imbue past experiences with a certain glow, but it seems to me that those days in the ashram were among the best.

There are lots of wonderful Kundalini Yoga teachers in Ottawa now, and more people than ever practicing. I wonder how many know that you are the one who planted the seed of Yogi Bhajan’s teachings here in Ottawa all those years ago that grew into this community.

I am still doing my best to keep up, though my knee joints complain more than before. Sometimes during a challenging exercise I remember you urging us on: “Keep Up!” and “Breathe!” Still other times during sadhana, I can hear you pick up the pace for me (“Ek Ong Kar...”)

Thank you, Baba Singh, my teacher. I will never forget you and what you taught me. God Bless you. Sat Nam. Anthony Chapman, Ottawa, Canada

TESTIMONIAL

Sat Nam. Here's a testimonial from, Henry Melito, a former '70s resident of the 3HO Denver ashram, which was discovered online by my wife. It is the only first hand account I've heard from a person who has also experienced spiritual insight while performing Close Order Drill.*

One of the highest spiritual practices I ever did was Close Order Drill
at the Denver ashram. I learned so much about responding over reacting
-- about authority over disrespect -- about the other over the self. Thank
you, Hari Singh Bird, the greatest spiritual teacher I ever had. Henry Melito

Reading his account causes me to reflect on my training and experiences with COD in the Marine Corps, and when Yogi Bhajan requested that I go to the Phoenix, AZ and San Francisco, CA ashrams back in the late '70s to lead COD during morning sadhana. It also makes me wonder why this is not a part of today's 3HO/Sikh Dharma experience as when Yogiji introduced it to the women at KWTC many years ago. I've often wondered to if people understand the technology and its role in teaching leadership skills.

*TRADITION AND DEFINITION OF
CLOSE ORDER DRILL

One of the cornerstones of Marine Corps customs, courtesies and traditions is our execution of close order drill and ceremonies. These traditions are perpetuated from one generation to the next through constant use and practice. The “esprit de corps” of every Marine has been brought about by their ever-present feeling of pride, not only in their unit, but also in themselves. The preservation of traditional discipline, our customs and courtesies, and the heritage of our Corps is our duty. It is our further duty to see that the same high standard of discipline and esprit de corps is not only preserved, but also further strengthened. These intangibles must be passed on to the future Marines who will take their place among the ranks of our Corps.

The object of Close Order Drill is to teach Marines by exercise to obey orders and to do so immediately in the correct way. Close Order Drill is our foundation of discipline and esprit de corps. Additionally, it is still one of the finest methods for developing confidence and troop leading abilities in our subordinate leaders. MARINE CORPS DRILL AND CEREMONIES MANUAL

Those who shall not learn to obey shall never be in a position to command. Yogi Bhajan

The U.S. Air Force Academy
Colorado Springs, Colorado

   
"Many years ago (early '80s) Hari Singh and I hosted the Siri Singh Sahib on a visit
to the Air Force Academy. We were treated with utmost honor, greeted respectfully
by their top brass, given a tour of their whole facility, including their beautiful chapel.
We were guests at their noon assembly which was an inspiration to watch. Many of
the cadets went out of their way to greet and meet us and did so with genuine
politness, honest curiosity and even affection. The Siri Singh Sahib
was very impressed by the institution."
-- Kirpal Singh Khalsa

Yogiji visits the Sikh Cadets at
New Mexico Military Institute
Roswell, New Mexico


Sat Kartar, Hari Har, General Gerald Childress,
Yogi Bhajan, and Ong Kar at NMMI, 1983


Hari Singh, Sat Kartar, Hari Kaur, General Gerald Childress,
with Yogi Bhajan, and Ong Kar at NMMI, 1983


Hari Singh, Hari Har Kaur, Yogi Bhajan, and Hari Kaur at NMMI, 1983


Yogi Bhajan visits cadets' quarters at NMMI, 1983


Ong Kar receives NMMI 'Best New Cadet' award, 1983

The Denver Experience Ends

From February, 1973 until its closing in June of 1984, the Josephine Street House of Guru Ram Das ashram was a host to many Kundalini Yoga students and others looking for shelter, rest, counseling, food, employment, and other assistance.

Some of today's baby boomers are former residents and guests of the Denver ashram. And the ashram hosted the Indian Sikh community as a Gurdwara, a Sikh house of worship, for a number of years as well. (See the November 4, 1974 issue of the Denver Post's Religion News Weekly with photos by Bill Peters.)

The ashram business enterprises evolved over several years from the restaurant into Khalsa Residential and Commercial Services, a successful janitorial-cleaning service until 1984, when it closed due to staff attrition partially due to singles wishing to marry and married couples desiring to acquire appropriate housing in order to raise children, and the resulting decline in ashram resources.

In June of 1984 the Hari's returned to residency in Florida, in Winter Park, a suburb just north of Orlando, whereupon Hari Singh opened a private, joint Optometrist-Optician practice in Southeast Orlando some months later.

The practice was sold to a group of local eye physicians in 1992 when Hari Singh joined the optometric practice of Dr. Steven Burkstaller in Roswell, NM while volunteering his services as the Sikh Chaplain for the newly admitted Sikh cadets at the New Mexico Military Institute, from whence Ong Kar and Sat Kartar had previously graduated in 1982 and 1984 respectively as the first Sikh attendees and graduates of NMMI, thanks to the efforts of then Assistant Chancellor for Sikh Dharma, M.S.S. Ram Das Singh. Both graduated with high honors along with many fond memories of their experiences as cadets. --

See Before 3HO Photos. See 3HO Letters and Stories.

The Sikhs at NMMI, early '90s


M.S.S. Hari Singh addresses NMMI Sikh cadets, Roswell, NM, October, 1992

First Sikhi Alumni return to NMMI 2012


Sat Kartar and Ong Kar at their New Mexico
Military Institute
class reunion, Roswell, NM, October, 2012

     

     

                                                

                                       



3HO

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My Real Name

Early 3HO Photos

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Letters and Lessons

Yogi Bhajan's Teacher

All for One Won for All

Summer Solstice 1973

SensitivitySummit.com

To Serve Is To Succeed

Christmas In New Mexico

Bibiji Inderjit Kaur Khalsa

The Essence ... You Are IT

Yogi Bhajan's First Student

Ma Bhagavati...in Memoriam

The Grace of God Meditation

Jot Singh's Early 3HO History

Awtar Singh's Early 3HO History

Kirpal Singh's Early 3HO History

The Songs of Livtar Singh Khalsa

The Solstice Sadhana Experience

A Gallery of 3HO Legacy Teachers

Rise Up Rise Up Sweet Family Dear

Hari Jiwan Singh's Early 3HO History

The Yogi Bhajan Library of Teachings

Guru Fatha Singh's Early 3HO History

Sat Santokh Singh's Early 3HO History

The Ubuntu Age - All for One, Won for All

Guru Singh's History of Summer Solstice

The Sikh Who Changed Modern-Day India

The 1974 Transition of Bhai Sahib Dyal Singh

Remembering Sat Nam The Grace Within You

More Video Stories of The Master Yogi Bhajan

Ending The Age of Me - Beginning The Age of We

Sat Nam! This project is a work in progress.
Please feel free to share any early 3HO
memories and-or photos here.


         

Gallery of 3HO Legacy Teachers
From the Late '60s and early '70s

See narrative about Teachers by Yogi Bhajan.

Legacy Teachers are all of those early students of Yogi Bhajan who sat at his feet, who were personally chiseled by him, and who deliver his teachings today. Until recently, this crusty group of greying middle-agers and senior citizens was affectionately referred to as “the old-timers.” Maybe they’re not so old. Didn’t the Master tell us that age is measured by flexibility of the spine? Many of the so-called old timers have very flexible spines. These early pioneers of our Dharma were sent by Yogi Bhajan to teach Kundalini Yoga all over the world. Some had everything to lose and nothing to gain. They opened ashrams, led spiritual communities, and inspired people through their lifestyle and their devotion to Yogiji’s teachings. They stood the test of time and the test of fire of the Master’s personal touch.

Legacy Teachers are now sharing their stories. Each of them in some unique way was touched by the Master and transformed, uplifted, and healed. These experiences and stories are part of Yogi Bhajan’s legacy. Through them we get little glimpses into the amazing and beautiful teacher who gave his all to his students so that they could become the teachers of future generations. The stories are inspiring, funny, insightful, and always show the way to God. -- Kirpal Singh Khalsa, Ph.D.

Gallery is open to all 3HO Legacy Teachers of the '70s genre.
Submit your narrative-text-links and pertinent photos here.

            
  Shakti Parwha Kaur    Kirpal Singh           Livtar Singh       Sat Santokh Singh      Karam Singh      

            
     Guru Singh         Hari Jiwan Singh        Gurujot Singh         Guruka Singh        GuruRoop Kaur

                        
Gurubachan Singh     Krishna Kaur    GuruGanesha Singh     Ravitej Singh       Gurumukh Kaur 

                        
Awtar Singh          Shiva Singh         Ram Das Singh    Guru Fatha
Singh      Kartar Singh  

                        
Guru Rattana Kaur      Nirvair Singh       Guru Prem Kaur   Sathanuman Singh           Jot Singh     

                      
Gurucharn Singh             Christ Singh               Krishna Singh       Ram Dhan Singh      Aftab Singh   

    
Hari Singh

The 3HO Legacy Videos

 

 

The SikhNet Story


         
YOU ARE IT

The Aquarian Age Wake Up Call

 

    

                                                

                                       

     

          


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