Photograph by Kathleen Dreier
"Who is E.J. Gold?" This is a common question amongst those who stumble upon his Teaching or hear about him through the ever-present network of "spiritual travelers." I have known E.J. for 20 years, having first discovered his name in a listing for a study group in the classified advertising section of a new-age newspaper. Through meeting one of his students, I was invited up to his home to visit the man himself. In the first hour of our time together he demonstrated his skills as a fine actor, a consummate comedian, a brilliant scholar, an accomplished chef, and an unerringly intuitive spiritual Teacher. Who is E.J. Gold? Needless to say, I was impressed. As our friendship grew and deepened over the years, I found him to also be an amazingly versatile artist (painting, drawing, sculpting, music, jewelry making), an expert gemologist, dealer in antiquities, an extraordinary writer, not only of spiritual topics, but humor and science fiction as well (Robert Silverberg has said of E.J., "Illuminating, outrageous and astounding."), and knowledgeable in the mechanics of the human condition to a degree that one could only call mastery.
E.J. Gold is certainly a man of many talents and many accomplishments. I also found him to be someone who is totally and irrevocably dedicated to service to other beings. The debt I owe him for his acute and trustworthy help in my own growing maturity as a teacher is immeasurable. So why is E.J. not better known, even in his own country? His style is wild, paradoxical, uncompromising and provocative at turns, and so startlingly clear and precise at other times, that it is shocking. He teaches experientially, not academically. Sad to say, yet obvious to any sincere seeker, the average person mouthing some simplistic new-age formula for self-improvement is not interested in the genuine experience and process of self-observation and transformation.
E.J. Gold has, nonetheless, been a prominent albeit controversial figure, first in the human potential movement and then in the spiritual movement, for close to 30 years. He is often called a "Teacher's Teacher", having been friend, mentor, trainer, even apprentice master to many of America's contemporary field of spiritual guides. He has authored over two dozen books and is currently the editor of "Galaxy" Magazine. His art has been exhibited in many one-man shows throughout the U.S. and Canada and has been used to illustrate a number of prominent book covers.
Where did E.J. Gold come from? Only he knows and is not interested in telling. Where is he going? In answer to that question, I can only say: "Grab hold and hang on, for no one knows. But one thing is certain, it will be an unforgettable and invaluably opportune ride!"
-- Lee Lozowick, 1994
In this video Harry Nilsson, seeks help of a special kind from his long-time friend E.J. Gold.
It began 35 yrs. ago when I was in the middle of a Gurdjieff/ Ouspensky search. "It" could be an itch, a flash of connection, a solo desire for understanding, and or as much love as was possible to sustain and create. I had been brought up with a family of varying beliefs which were respected only by the connection to life stories and simple unflinching honesty. I was given the stories of my parents' lives, and their different belief systems were a gesture to me to make my own way. So I was gifted with a sense that there was a something going on, and "it" matters.
My search led me to a Montreal bookstore where I found a book called," Secret Talks with Mr. G," which shimmered with Gurdjieffesqe appeal. I immediately began reading and enjoying the vibes that arose and casually flipped to find out more about the author when I realized that there was no author given. This moment began the most elegant invitation I have ever received to a "party," that has no beginning and no end. A"come as you are," party! When I finally got the courage to write the publisher, another world opened to me and I went on red alert. The material I received curled through my reality like a crazy relative who spoke flashes of brilliance but scared me with his apparent disconnect to the usual. For ten years I maintained a secret life with the Institute, unsure of where to file the material I was being offered. My wife was not interested but also not fearful of this strange alliance which allowed me to feed "it" without shame. When I tried to share my curious discovery with folks, they went on automatic 'delete'. There seemed to be a built-in firewall which I had inadvertently passed through. Yikes.
In 1990 I could stand it no more and finally accepted an invitation to a Labor Day Convention. Upon meeting Menlo at the Truffle Shop, once again I felt "it" arise but now entwined in a theatre unlike anything I had ever encountered. Calmly skipping 23 yrs. to almost right now, ("it" keeps scampering off) I will not even take an inbreath to attempt to lay out the moments and merging that have come my way. Art, sculpture, comedy, jewelry, music, theatre, books, video games, artifacts are the tools of this trade! A "Keystone Cops" Production studio of wonderful elves which sustains the array, is forever retooling and refreshing work ideas, accelerating production, and getting perkier every day. Miraculously, there is always a door for newbies, who like myself stumble in. Floundering while being helped and then helping others, is the fuel source.
The fellow on the cover of the book I bought 35 yrs ago, E.J Gold, can still be found in different costumes. Dimensional variance abounds. "It" seems to be pouring through his oft child-like playfulness with a sense of purpose which is "nuclear" energy-wise and yet kind. Things happen when you attempt his offerings to learn. When no effort is made, nothing happens. While in his presence, I rattle inside seeking "it." Yet I seek out to help his work any way I can. Unsure and humbled, with my wife Mary now exhorting me to do the orbs and get on the Beacon, "it" is the same show but ripened. To speak in this way is an honoring of my yearnings that have found a garden in which to work. Bless you E.J. and all the kids.
P.S. Oxford Dictionary: teach - to give another knowledge or skill which one has oneself.
P.P.S Boomerang Song - First you gotta throw "it!"
Jim Donald, BA Psychology/Drama, Retired school teacher
E.J. Gold plays alto sax on the street in front of the Flying Hare Gallery at which hung "Abstract Jazz", an exhibit including Gold's JazzArt®.
These are the teachings that have stood out for me since having 'arrived' at his school:
I am immensely grateful that I have been exposed to EJ's Work in this lifetime.
Mary Donald, RN