The founding pastor of a megachurch in Singapore that preaches a "prosperity gospel" has been convicted, along with five other church leaders, of fraud after a judge concluded he had used US$36 million in donations to fund his wife's international pop star career.
Pastor Kong Hee of the evangelical City Harvest Church and five aides maintained that the purpose of the so-called Crossover Project was to broaden the church's appeal and evangelize using secular pop music. But as details of the wife's public pop persona emerged — including a music video where she bumps and grinds in underwear alongside hip hop artist and songwriter Wyclef Jean — some churchgoers began to suspect the music was less about Christian values and more about corruption.
The singer, Ho Yeow Sun, a church leader who became known as the Chinese Geisha of pop and goes by the name Sun Ho, was not charged with wrongdoing. This week, Ho, 43, lamented her part in the saga, telling the online news arm of CHC that she was forced into a world whose values were "poles apart" from those of the church.
"People in the church world were upset with me, asking how could a pastor's wife do this, and people in the entertainment world were suspicious of me," said Ho. "Many times, I asked God how long more I had to do it."
Ho said she thought about quitting the projectseveral times, but that when fans would approach her after a concert, she believed it was "worth it."
"So much happened during the Crossover but one thing I remember most clearly is this: standing on the stage each night, after I share my testimony, and seeing the souls come forward, telling myself, 'It's all worth it, it's all worth it.'"
At one point in the project, Ho worked with Jean to develop a unique genre of "Asian-reggae" in her single "China Wine." That partnership came to an end in 2008 when Jean exited the project after negotiations faltered over his US$1.75 million producer fee.
In court, Kong said that his wife's success in the US was key to greater impact for the Crossover Project and would give City Harvest Church a "greater open door for the gospel to be preached … in every territory around the globe."
He also claimed that church members were "very, very supportive, very happy, very positive, very grateful that God was able to use her and they kept praying for her, they kept praying for the Crossover Project."
Indeed some members have supported the leaders throughout the case that began in 2012, and said they believed in the Crossover Project to help reach nonbelievers.
The presiding judge in the trial, See Kee Onn, didn't agree. On Wednesday, he found Kong and the leaders guilty on three counts of criminal breach of trust. Those charges were related to the embezzlement of S$24 million (US$17 million) from congregants meant for building and other investment-related activities, and then the misappropriation of a further S$26m (US$18.5 million) to cover up the first crime from auditors.
"Evidence points to a finding that they knew they were acting dishonestly, and I am unable to conclude otherwise," the judge told the courtroom.
Singapore is not known for treading leniently on people accused of corruption. Kong could face life in prison for the criminal breach charge, while the four others could land in jail for up to 10 years and receive a fine for falsifying accounts.
Kong and Ho founded CHC in 1989, and since then it has grown to a congregation of approximately 17,500 people. The megachurch bases its values on Charismatic and Pentecostal teachings, and has several affiliated churches abroad, including in the US, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan, and Australia.
Everything that is, runs in cycles, recurring cycles determine our lives:
Day and night, the circle of the seasons, the cycle of the stars, the cycle of the lunar cycle from new moon to new moon, death, birth, rebirth.
The circle itself is an 'ingenious invention', has neither beginning nor end.
Stone circles, medicine wheels and circular megalithic can be found all over the world.
They play an important role in the traditional knowledge of many tribal cultures.
Shamanic traditions, there have been and still exist in many parts of our earth, and they lie alive everywhere where people have remained in touch with nature.
Stone circles represent connection points between the influences of the earth and the sky.
In Königsdorf, Bavaria near the village I was born, there are forests with old mossy trees and steep slopes leading down to the merrily swirling Lech creek.
At this idyllic place met some five hundred friends and followers of the Ojibwa medicine man Sun Bear, to celebrate a Medicine Wheel Ritual.
The Medicine Wheel, a mandala (vision board) of stones is based on a vision that had received the medicine man from high spirits.
The origin of Shamanism: Altay, Russian Federation
The stone circle connects all beings- the animals, the 'green people' (plants), the stones, the stars, the clouds- spirits, people and all things (everything that is) - with one another and with the Great Spirit.
In the centre of the wheel is a large stone, which represents as 'Grandpa Stone' the Creator and the sole origin of the universe.
In addition to the grandfather stone is directed eastward a buffalo skull.
Buffalo Scull on Grandfathers Stone Centre Sacred Medicine Wheel
Four paths lined with stones radiate from this centre and hit the outer stone circle, which symbolizes the entire creation circle.
In the seventies of the last century emerged from the New Age Movement (i.e.. Vision of Sun Bear, a Metis Ojibwa Indian) astrological horoscope and aligned medicine wheels.
One result of the Zeitgeist of earlier New Age dreams.
The ancient Indians turned to astronomical knowledge for the basic orientation of the wheel (e.g. solstices), and certainly little astrology, not at all for horoscopes.
Current traditional Indian representatives reject the alienation of their spiritual traditions from consistent.
These Indians will not be dictated by the stars, but transferred from a singular personal vision out of a totem (e.g. animals, plants, rocks, etc.).
In this sense our (Lakota) Medicine Wheel was launched and aligned.
'The Medicine Wheel is a springboard of power that will allow you to link up to all the energies of the universe'
Participants in the ceremony are smoked with Sage - Steppe Wormwood (Artemisia prairie trilobata), the guardians of the four directions and the other spirits are invoked; the sacred pipe is lit and circling in the course of the sun, and last tobacco and small gifts deposits on the outer circle.
Tobacco sacrifice at the outer circle
Sun Bear said the ritual radiates peace, harmony, prosperity and healing to the entire environment.
In order to conduct the rituals at the meeting and to convey sacred knowledge, indigenous medicine people and carriers of wisdom were flown in from the Russian Federation and America and invited domestic European 'shamans' and spiritual leaders.
My friend and mentor J. Reuben Ortiz Silverbird ('walk in beauty') the Peace Ambassador and accomplished musician, singer and performer, internationally recognised as a leading teacher of Native American spirituality could unfortunately not partake.
The next morning it was raining blithely, except during short interruptions.
The workshops outdoors, in the forest and the river cancelled.
Heavy and gray closed the sky and everywhere there was dribbling down.
Wabun and the Indians said they would do something about it.
The Spiritual Leaders met behind closed doors in the sacred tepee, where in the middle blazed an 'Eternal Flame' for the late Sun Bear.
Also, I was invited into the illustrious circle.
'Wherever I am, the sun comes forth. I can talk with the clouds spirits. They listen to me!'
Told Luke Blue Eagle, who immediately took the chief seat opposite the teepee entrance.
Using an eagle feather he let ascend swaths of sacred prairie mugwort (ragwort) qualms, took the frame drum in the hand and sang his Medicine Song.
'Heya, Heya, ya, ya, ho' or something like it sounded.
An impressive performance - but without effect !
It was raining even harder !
Now came the turn for the white-haired old Manitonquat.
He also burned incense and sang Indian power songs.
The cloud spirits did not seem to be impressed.
On the contrary, now it flowed torrentially down.
Cernunnos, the Deer God as Lord of the Weather
'Parsifal Rain', they now asked me smiling, 'you know something that calmed down the rain spirits?!'
I did not want to blow and explain that 'making the weather' was actually to my cradle, not only because I'm still experimenting very cautious, thus I decided to keep my big mouth.
After all I've done with the 'rain-making' already quite a loss which was certainly due to a particular arrogance after initial successes and besides, I have, as Goethe's sorcerer's apprentice handled with powers of which I knew next to nothing.
Actually, I knew very little except that with the Ordinary Hemp Agrimony (Cunegonde herb, Eupatorium cannabinum), the ancient Celts have operated weather spells.
The herb that grew by chance next to the Tipi was - according the tradition - ordained the weather sensitive deer, the antlered Cernunnos, the sun god of the underworld.
Only I did not know whether the Pagan Celts summoned the rain with the herb or dispelled or whether they were able to do the both.
It was worth the try.
I picked the high-growing herb, waved it in the air and put it next to the sacred fire in the ground.
Now I would like to be able to say: ... and once the rain stopped.
But it was not so.
General perplexity now spread through the round.
Since Wabun spoke - after she was the boss.
'Someone said, in this place here was once a camp of the Hitler Youth'
she said in a meaningful sound.
'We bring light and good energy, but the spirits of the Nazis want to prevent that.
These evil spirits intend to expel us by the weather'.
This explanation seemed plausible to those present and witnessed her high spiritual gift - that but did not harm the rain.
It seemed to me the explanation anyway was somewhat far-fetched, especially if you know what the Hitler Youth was - and what it was not, and the thing about 'light and energy' is anyway fishy to me.
But that's beside the point.
I had learned from the Cheyenne that a ritual that the spiritual beings make known a medicine man in his vision, never ever may not be amended in the slightest detail.
A ritual sets forces in the spirit world in motion, which then have very concrete effects in everyday reality.
Even if one does have very best intentions, one must not simply change a ritual fixed by the Manitus (deities).
We must not create a 'Great Mother Stone' and then, moreover, put on the grandfather stone at will out of political correctness.
Thereby is the original quiescent centre, the primal unity split, so that polar tension and discord are possible.
But 'ho', Wabun had spoken !
She brooked no argument.
It seemed like confirmation of my suspicion that Wabun somehow could be wrong, as next day I met the master of herbalism, Sepp Ott.
He had heard that I and also the 'Aschenbrennerin' - the talented Bavarian herbalist Eva Aschenbrenner - were here at the meeting, that's why he once came by.
Sepp Ott, a Munich original and old outdoorsman who performs with a lot of wit and humour very educational herb hikes in the middle of the Bavarian capital, was in a particularly good mood.
'It's wonderful to be here, in spite of the rain. Königsdorf makes me wonderful memories, I tell you. Back when twelve or thirteen years of Bua (lad), I camped here with the Hitler Youth.
Yes, my, what a Gaudi (jamboree) we had!'
I must well have looked a little strange, so he answered my thoughts:
'Uh, so (such) a rubbish that has never had anything to do with Nazis.
We were just boys who even came out from the narrow streets of the city and took the opportunity to let off steam in the woods and down the river, and to sit in the evening around the campfire. Really enjoy the great outdoors, which was wonderful!'
I felt my thoughts confirmed and was glad to meet the old Sepp again after years and above all that he could remember me.
Also on the third day it rained on.
Only when my herb hike there was - as luck would have it - a short break, so I could show people native medicinal plants and edible wild vegetables.
That night were heard suspicious noises: hasty steps to the latrines, choking and throwing up.
Everywhere, behind the tents and in the bushes, was puking.
It smelled like diarrhoea and sour vomit.
The constant rain and cold had done theirs - epidemically spread from to an intestinal flu.
One of the participants, with whom I had befriended, was a young doctor.
He let it be known publicly that he would put up a tent and ordaining anyone who is afflicted with the intestinal flu treatment, free of charge.
'What kind of medicine do you have?', I asked him curiously.
'Oh, you know, nothing. I serve little white placebo pills.
This stabilizes at least the psyche. We do not want a panic. Why, you know about a herbal remedy?'
'No, nothing comes to mind', I answered truthfully.
Despite abdominal cramps, nausea and the runs the ordination tent remained virtually empty.
The Naturals, eco-freaks and Indians fans were indeed come to get out at least for a week from the estranged from nature, wired, over-technological consumer society to get rid of electronic bracelets and to behold the rehearsal for future natural, harmonious and spiritual New Neolithic.
They were almost offended when one came up with pills that had been produced in any chemistry lab.
Wild growing medicinal herbs, as they used the Indians or Celts, was which they wanted.
On this, they insisted.
They turned to me and jostling:
'Come, Parsifal, you certainly know any herb that acts at intestinal flu!'
As so often I stood there helplessly.
Why all these people come just to me !
There are some experts familiar with a high number of plants signatures and can assign therefore a specific form of the disease.
Certainly I had somewhere once, read in Maria Treben's herbs lexica, the herb priest Künzle, the pharmacist Pavlov, Ethno-Botanist, Culture-Anthropologist Stohrl learnt about herbs for intestinal flu, but for the moment struck me nothing at all, except chamomile.
But suddenly it was as if I heard the voice of a ghost:
'Open your eyes, you stupid man!
The solution to the problem is right in front of you. Know, salvation is always present'
'What's the hardest part of it all?
What you seem the easiest:
With the eyes to see
what lies before your eyes'
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
At that moment I saw it:
As they grew everywhere at the brook and on the meadow - Engelwurz, Wild Angelica (Angelica, Archangel, Holy Ghost, Alexander, Master Word), the Angel of the Forest.
I had little experience with the large plant until then.
In the community near Villingen in the Black Forest, where I was once a vegetable gardener, we had daily drunk in the cold and damp transitional period between autumn and winter for the prevention of colds and flu the Angelica tee as infusion.
It was said that the spicy herb infusion strengthen the immune system.
The plant itself I knew then not, as we got the dry, crushed roots from the pharmacy.
But the tea seemed to work.
The actual plant I had learned to know much later as the herb master Sepp Ott, at a herbal excursion in the Black Forest showed me radiant of joy a nearly two meters tall, thriving umbellifer and said: 'Look, is she not beautiful?'
He was amazed that I, the alleged herbal expert who did not know Angelica.
Yes, and now she had called me.
Bill TallBull, the Cheyenne medicine man had always told me: 'Not you are looking for the plant, but she is looking for you!'
I took a bucket, my friend, the doctor got hold of two spades, and together we dug out in incessantly pouring rain, the strong white roots, one by one.
We were soaked to the skin.
In the kitchen we washed and brushed the roots clean and cut them to small pieces.
The chain-smoking cook, who was not a member of the 'Bear Tribe', looked at us too sceptical.
When we asked about her biggest pots, she hesitated.
She wanted to know first what kind of a root it was and who could account for it, to brew a tea.
I could read her gloomy thoughts.
She was afraid it might be a poison herb.
In her mind she saw already, printed in thick black letters, the headline of the German Bild newspaper: PSEUDO-INDIAN CULT COMMITTED MASS SUICIDE WITH POISONOUS PLANTS.
Yes, had there not once been the Jonestown cult in Guyana, by losing it and had itself killed with poisoned effervescent powder ?
Hundreds sect members had died.
Nevertheless, I managed to reassure the cook.
She lit another cigarette and debouched with the 50-liter pots.
Soon the people were queuing after refreshing, sharp spicy tasting elixir.
Some became immediately well, others took a little longer.
For many it was an important confirmation that the straight nature to those which correspond to it can provide a cure.
One need not even to import expensive exotic plants.
Sun, Mercury. Nicolas Culpeper (1616-1654). The famous English herbalist and Herbal-Astronomer, presents the majestic plant under the rule of the sun. 'The plant is like the sun when it is in her house in the lion', he writes.
In addition, it takes effect against all diseases of Saturn: hardening (concretion), cold, toxicosis (poisoning) (Culpeper, 1999: 8).
The Angelica is with her hollow stems and inflated leaf sheaths open to air and light effects; at the same time reveals the vigorous taproot a solid relationship with the earth forces. The signature suggests a holistic harmonizing effect. Her protective property is reflected in the bracts that protect the flower umbels from external influences.
Essential oils or terpene hydrocarbons (have a cleansing effect and expectorant for the lungs and respiratory system), angelic acid, coumarins (Woodruff smell!), Bitter substances (stimulate digestion), flavonoids, tannic acid.
Warning: contains furocoumarin; the fresh juice can induce in direct sunlight in susceptible persons skin irritation.
The root was once used against plague, cholera and typhoid, today in lung ailments, colds, flu, viral diseases, indigestion, and loss of appetite, mononucleosis, digestive problems, intestinal fungi and pancreas weakness.
Because it promotes the intestinal blood flow, it is also indicated for colitis, enteritis, gastritis and even with gallbladder and liver disorders.
We’ve all been told by parents, teachers, doctors, and mainstream scientists that we will go blind if we look at the sun. Well folks, we have been suckered, and I am a living example!
The act of sungazing, or literally looking at the sun, is one of the most beneficial things a human being and other animals can do for physical, mental, and spiritual enhancement. It turns out that when you look at the sun, the electromagnetic energy from the sun bypasses your physical and goes right to your brain to “recharge your batteries” and neutralize your body for the better, causing no eyesight loss in the process. Kudos to akashic records reader Andrew Bartzis for pointing this out!
And it also turns out that sungazers had it all wrong when they said that you must look at the sun only during the 1 hour window of sunrise and sunset when there is a UV index of zero, and that any other time will cause harm through ultraviolet radiation. Is it an accident that, as Mark Matika told me in an interview with him, that Florida is the state with the lowest skin cancer rate yet it is the state where people spend the most time in the sun? Not at all!
Mainstream science has lied to us about the nature of the sun in regards to its chemistry, physics, and how its rays affect us. First of all it is electromagnetic and NOT powered by nuclear fusion. Just like light bulbs are “hot spots” on the web of electrical wiring that goes throughout a building, so too are stars “hot spots” on a universal web of electromagnetic consciousness energy (with planet being the “cold spots”). The fact that stars get their energy from the OUTSIDE is the real reason why the corona of a star, which is many miles above the surface of a star, is so much hotter than the surface of the star. Further, the radiation that comes from a star like our sun is not harmful to our bodies in the way that we are told by mainstream science. Rather, it is a giver of life and energy! So while the brightness of the sun may cause discomfort if done at high noon, your vision will not suffer from this discomfort. Although experienced sungazers have been able to get used to the brightness to the point where they will be able to look at the sun at high noon with ease. I myself am not quite there yet, but I am getting closer and closer to it day by day.
Sun gazing makes the most of this solar aspect by giving your body a general feeling of mood enhancement and spiritual uplift, while also causing a loss of appetite as your body has the ability to convert sunlight into essential nutrients through sungazing. Prominent sungazers like Hira Ratan Manek (often called HRM) have utilized this nutrient aspect better than most other sungazers. Yeah, yeah, HRM may have been caught eating in the documentary “Eat The Sun,” but he is still living proof that sungazing is highly beneficial for the mind, body, and soul. I can, from experience, testify that I am living proof of the same.
Staying grounded while sungazing is said to be the most beneficial way of doing it as you “complete the circuit” between the sun and Mother Earth when you stay grounded. While standing barefoot on grass or dirt the most common and most effective way of doing this, you can still stay grounded by putting your bare hands or any other part of your body that has no clothing over it on the grass or dirt. Walking barefoot after a sungazing session potentiates the effects of sungazing. I also like to do Ki breaths during sungazing which are similar to the Ki breaths done during Aikido practice, and I have noticed from experience that Aikido practice seems to run more smoothly if done after a sungazing session.
The 3rd eye (aka, the pineal gland) becomes more active from sungazing. However, this is not an area that I go into as I think it is better to focus on the heart chakra more so than the 3rd eye chakra. Some even assert that obsessing about using your 3rd eye all the time can come back to haunt you since the Archon control system wants your 3rd eye open (contrary to what many conspiracy theorists think) so they can take control of your mind which is where the 3rd eye is located. That’s not to say that using the 3rd eye is totally harmful, and not using it at all can cause you to miss out on all the fun! However, when used in the wrong way, the 3rd eyecan be used by the system of domination and control to control your mind for their agenda, so use the 3rd eye with caution folks!
You can expect some people to call your crazy for looking at the sun, and I myself had to go through such an experience as my mother, who is an ophthalmologist, was freaking out at me when I told her I would sungaze starting last April. Despite the fact that her own son is living proof that looking at the sun will not harm your vision, she still refuses to acknowledge that sungazing does not hurt vision. She has clearly been brainwashed by the Rockefeller-controlled medical system which only treats symptoms and not causes. And with that said, looking at the sun can treat the causes of many illnesses, which is yet another reason why I advocate sungazing and do it all the time myself. And I don’t care if people like my own mother call me crazy for it, because what other people think about me is none of my business or concern!