During the period starting in the late 1980's, when Mr. Winter was freely plagiarizing, bastardizing, and misrepresenting my work, I learned that he had been successful in getting Mr. Drunvalo Melchizedek (a.k.a. Akbar, a.k.a. Bernard Perona) to include these misrepresented and bastardized copies of my work in some of his stage and video performances.
I was assured by nearly everyone who knew Mr. Melchizedek at that time that he was a caring and honest person.
I went to considerable trouble to explain the details of what Mr. Winter had done to Mr. Melchizedek, and Mr. Melchizedek then wrote the following letter to Mr. Winter, and sent me a copy.
The entire letter from Mr. Melchizedek, dated April 21, 1992, is reproduced as an exact photocopy, below. Please continue to read below this reproduction of Mr. Melchizedek's letter for the remainder of my explanatory notes.
What Mr. Melchizedek wrote at that time seemed to me to be straightforward and fair. I relied upon what Mr. Melchizedek wrote, because I was told that Mr. Melchizedek was an honest person. But as it turned out, even though Mr. Melchizedek makes the statements above (which I am going to comment on below), he never removed the misrepresenting, plagiarized materials produced by Mr. Winter from his videotapes, and he continued to perform on the same stage alongside Mr. Winter. But I didn't know this at the time.
As you can see from the letter, Mr. Melchizedek is addressing Mr. Winter personally, and he makes it clear that:
1) "Stan is right." --First paragraph, from Mr. Melchizedek's April 1992 letter, above.
2) Mr. Melchizedek makes it clear that the offending work is in Mr. Winter's now-prohibited "The Alphabet of the H)EART(H", and that it includes plagiarism of Mr. Melchizedek's work as well. --Second paragraph, from Mr. Melchizedek's April 1992 letter, above.
3) Mr. Melchizedek makes it clear that he would not have protested if the situation were not continuing.
Mr. Melchizedek tells Mr. Winter to stop referring to him and his work as well. --Third paragraph, from Mr. Melchizedek's April 1992 letter, above.
4) Mr. Melchizedek clearly states that he is aware that Mr. Winter claims that he does not believe in copyright laws.
Mr. Melchizedek says, "...Copyrighted works belong to the owners of those works. If you take them, you can not only hurt people, you are stealing."
Mr. Melchizedek states that "The end does not justify the means." And, he advises Mr. Winter that "giving full credit to other people is a great example of unity." --Fourth paragraph from Mr. Melchizedek's April 1992 letter, above.
5) Mr. Melchizedek personally signs his letter to Mr. Winter,
"In love and service," and sends the original to Mr. Winter and a copy
to Stan Tenen.
If Mr. Melchizedek had stood by what he wrote here, there would have been no further problem. I had no way of knowing that Mr. Melchizedek did not intend to honor what he wrote here, and that in fact he was acting exactly the opposite to what he wrote.
The fact is that Mr. Melchizedek, as it turns out, did not act according to what he wrote, and that he continued to support Mr. Winter, and perform alongside of Mr. Winter. So, while I believed that Mr. Melchizedek was acting responsibly, as he had written, behind my back Mr. Melchizedek and Mr. Winter were having a good laugh at my expense -- and making a good deal of money, and gaining a good deal of credit for work they had never done.
About three years later, when all attempts to reach an understanding with Mr. Winter with regard to his plagiarism and disparagement had failed and we found ourselves in United States Federal District Court, I made an effort to contact Mr. Melchizedek and engage his assistance in reining in Mr. Winter so as to avoid having to use the court system.
The results of this attempt to make things better were disastrous. It turned out that Mr. Melchizedek had never kept his word, and when I pressed him, the situation became ugly.
Here are excerpts from Mr. Winter's first "confession," his sworn Deposition held on 25 May 1998 in Rochester, New York. They are self-explanatory. (Additional excerpts from Mr. Winter's 25 May 1998 deposition, covering other topics, are posted at www.danwinter.com/DWDepXcrpt.html.)
DEPOSITION OF DANIEL E. WINTER, 25 May, 1998
Rochester, New York, USA
Excerpts Taken 21 November 2002
This is an accurate and true copy. A few minor spelling errors have been corrected.
[NOTE: "Q" indicates a question by Mr. Coyne, the
attorney for the Plaintiffs. "A" indicates an answer by Mr. Winter.]
Q. What relationship did you have with Drunvalo Melchizedek?
A. I've known him for a long time.
Q. Well --
A. I know what letter he's referring to.
MR. TENEN: Why don't you identify it?
Q. I'll hand you a one-page document. Do you recognize that?
Q. Is that a letter of April 21, 1992?
Q. Is that from Drunvalo Melchizedek to yourself?
Q. Do you remember that letter?
A. Yes, very well.
Q. If I may have it for a minute. In this letter is Mr. Drunvalo Melchizedek telling you he wants you to stop using his work?
A. He's saying he believed I made a mistake in using alphabet letter forms that were related to Stan's work. That's basically what --
Q. How did you take the sentence --
MR. TENEN: Just read the letter. Did you receive that letter?
MR. WINTER: Yes.
MR. TENEN: Did you honor it?
MR. WINTER: I guess I'm honoring it now.
Q. Didn't he point out what he considered an
infraction of his work and then said, “If this was the only infraction
of my work I probably would never say anything; but given the degree that
this plagiarism seems to be occurring between myself, Stan Tenen, and others,
I feel I must ask you to stop using any reference to my work or my name."
Did he say that?
Q. Nevertheless, after that you had a business relationship with him, didn't you?
A. Well, they invited me to come there and share on several occasions.
Q. Where is “there”?
A. In Arizona. On those occasions I was very careful not to show alphabet --
MR. TENEN: Are you aware of ever receiving funding from the same source that you received funding, ultimately from Transecon?
MR. WINTER: There was a connection. I'm not sure --
MR. TENEN: Do you know how much money they were given?
MR. WINTER: (No response.)
MR. TENEN: Well, this is people you'd been working with.
MR. WINTER: Do I know how much money --
MR. TENEN: Did you receive compensation from them?
MR. WINTER: From Flower of Life?
MR. TENEN: Or Ron Holt or Drunvalo Melchizedek or Hummingbird, or someone funding both jointly with you as part of it.
MR. WINTER: Okay, well, let's try to be real specific here. When I gave the talk out there in Arizona, I received about $300 to give the talk, and I made sure -- I'm pretty sure I was very careful not to show any alphabet letter forms. Do I know how much money Transecon gave to Drunvalo? I don't know. I do know there was a business relationship that had to do with the center they purchased and that it was a very considerable --
MR. TENEN: Mr. Melchizedek wrote that and signed it as working for Hummingbird. What about Hummingbird?
MR. WINTER: Hummingbird is a name Drunvalo Melchizedek has used for a long time. I'm not sure -- I know he still uses that word sometimes as his E-mail addresses.
[END OF EXCERPT]
Mr. Winter identifies, acknowledges, and verifies the authenticity of Mr. Melchizedek's April 21, 1992 letter to him, exactly as posted above.
While admitting as little as possible, and greatly minimizing the funds involved, Mr. Winter tells us that he continued to perform with and for Mr. Melchizedek, and the Flower of Life. When Mr. Winter says he was "very careful not to show any alphabet letter forms," he is lying by leaving the misimpression that he did not show my sculpture(s). Mr. Winter did show my copyright sculpture(s). The alphabet, and/or letters, are not the issue, and Mr. Winter later admitted this overly clever self-serving misdirection in his second "confession".
I would like people to consider the situation step by step, in chronological order, so I will continue to present documents written by Mr. Melchizedek in later postings.
If anyone has questions or comments, or would like to see more evidence or whatever, please send your email to email@example.com.
Director of Research,
I think it would be helpful to fill in some background information, before presenting Mr. Melchizedek's second letter.
Mr. Winter has tried to excuse his thievery and abuse of my work by claiming that he was only "sharing" information that I was trying to keep secret, because I was some sort of selfish and fanatically religious "Jewish priest keeping the secrets of immortality for the Jews alone." (Several of Mr. Winter's outraged and naive followers have self-righteously and innocently screamed this insanity at me personally on the phone.) It serves Mr. Winter when people think I am a fanatically religious Jew. Actually this has never been true.
It is true that I was first motivated to want to help to solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict when I was in Jerusalem for the first time, and saw for myself that the situation was serious. I did not plan to be in Jerusalem. I was there on a fluke, because a friend had invited me to visit (in part to visit the world famous Bahai Shrine in Haifa) and because my work situation provided an opportunity for the first vacation I had had in 3-years. I also stopped in London and Paris - this was a vacation. - It was not some lunatic scene from the annals of a deluded person visiting Jerusalem and coming down with the well-known mental condition known as "the Jerusalem syndrome." (I was offered a job in an optical-electronics start-up in Haifa, but I didn't take it.)
Until Mr. Winter stole and bastardized my work, it didn't occur to me that I was researching teachings that had been preserved by the dedicated efforts of people of faith and people of science for thousands of years - without myself giving them adequate credit.
Until Mr. Winter stole from me, it never occurred to me that I had a responsibility to respect the sensibilities and feelings of the communities of faith and science that had preserved the raw data I was working from.
In other words, I'm not a particularly good Jew (and I am not a Jewish priest, as Mr. Winter admitted in his Corrective Notice, even he knew this was untrue), but - because of the Golden Rule - and because Mr. Winter was stealing from me, I decided to "give credit where credit is due." I decided - in the words of Jesse Jackson - to not just "talk the talk", but to also "walk the walk." And I decided to do this by honoring my family's religion (which I previously paid no attention to) by not working on Saturdays and by eating (almost completely) vegetarian (so I would be honoring the kosher laws and eating healthy at the same time.)
This is the extent of my fanaticism: I take off one day a week and I eat healthy vegetarian food. Many millions of other normal, non-fanatic, believers and unbelievers, saints, sinners, infidels, scientists, agnostics, etc. etc. do the same thing.
I must admit that as a careful and skeptical scientist I am strict with the truth and integrity of my data and findings. It is just not possible to do good science that has real value in the world without telling the truth and standing up for the truth. All religions teach truthfulness, but this is not my reason for sticking to the truth, providing full and honest findings in context (that is the whole truth), and standing up for it. In science, misrepresentation and sloppiness with regard to the truth destroys credibility.
Because I went to the New York City public schools and did not have a religious education, I never paid much attention to religion and I knew nothing about theology. I studied just enough of the Hebrew alphabet to be able to read at my Bar Mitzvah, and then I had no other connection to anything religious - and I never looked back - until Mr. Winter's thievery reminded me to "give credit where credit is due."
There were more Native Americans from the Mohawk Nation and religious Catholics (who left school early on Wednesdays so they could go to parochial school) in my classes, than there were religious Jews.
Interestingly, Mr. Winter's only education was in theology and psychology. Mr. Winter had a full religious education (and little other education.) Mr. Winter attended Catholic parochial schools and got his B.A. in Psychology - his only credential - at the Catholic University of Detroit. (Mr. Winter admitted under oath that he was lying when he claimed he did graduate work for Prof. Al Ax at U. Detroit, and he confessed that he did not do any other undergraduate or graduate work either.)
In contrast, I was educated to be a honest skeptic, I had no exposure to theology, and I had no training in the use of psychological techniques and pseudo-scientific jargon like the sort of clever double-talk that Mr. Winter (and Mr. Melchizedek) use to get people to believe. I have a B.S. in Physics (minor in Mathematics) from the decidedly non-religious, mechanistic, techno-nerd, Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn (now the Polytechnic University of New York in Brooklyn.) My work is published in peer-reviewed science and consciousness journals, and I serve on the editorial advisory board of the Science and the Primacy of Consciousness series, along with highly respected "name brand" scholars and scientists with more Ph.D.s than I have fingers and toes.
If I had known something about theology - if I had heard about Satanism, Lucifer, the "dark side", angelology, messianism, prophecy, miracles, and the like, I might not have been taken by surprise by Mr. Melchizedek's wild response when I telephoned him. "All hell broke loose", so to speak, when I asked Mr. Melchizedek to help to rein in Mr. Winter as he had promised, and as he wrote in his April 1992 letter to Mr. Winter.
Because I was not well educated in Judaism (which puts no emphasis on these things) and because I was not educated at all about Christianity or Islam (which apparently take Satan and the "dark side" more seriously than does Judaism), I was not at all prepared for Mr. Melchizedek's weird theological arguments. I was certainly not prepared for Mr. Melchizedek's threats and his intervention to prevent Meru Foundation from defending the integrity (and usefulness) of our original work from Mr. Winter and his abuses and misrepresentations of it.
I was not at all prepared when Mr. Melchizedek told me that he would not rein in Mr. Winter unless I joined with him and his multi-millionaire benefactor, Jirka Rysavy in "channeling Lucifer." I had previously heard that Mr. Winter was involved in satanism, but I had not taken it seriously or tried to confirm this. (Mr. Rysavy was then CEO of Corporate Express and Transecon in Broomfield, Colorado, and he is now CEO of Gaiam, the health food and exercise equipment mega-corporation that is currently taking over numerous independent businesses. As we know from the transcript of Mr. Winter's first "confession" (posted at <http://www.danwinter.com/DWDepXcrpt.html>) Mr. Winter later worked for Transecon, under a "front" company, set up by Mr. Rysavy, until Mr. Rysavy fired him for refusing to end his plagiarism of my work.)
What followed was like a grade "B" horror or gangster movie. Mr. Melchizedek not only told me that he and Mr. Rysavy were channeling Lucifer, but that now that he had told me this, if I did not go alone with him and if I did not turn my work over to Mr. Winter, "they (I assume he and/or his Lucifer-channeling friends) would 'get' me."
I was taken completely by surprise. I expected Mr. Melchizedek to be reasonable and caring and to help me to rein in Mr. Winter. Instead I was told about something really sick and dangerous, and I was told if I did not acquiesce, he and/or the others involved with him in channeling Lucifer would actively try to destroy my work and my credibility, and see to it that Mr. Winter got the credit - and that they would support Mr. Winter's wildly untrue version of events.
At this point, completely blind-sided, I lost it and I got angry. I wish I had a recording of what I actually said, because that would put the lie to what Mr. Melchizedek went on to claim I said - but I don't. (It was incidents such as this that later prompted us to videotape Mr. Winter's first confession.) I am sure I told him "to go to hell." I am sure I yelled something to the effect that it would be more effective to hire someone to get him and Mr. Winter than to use the courts. I was really angry.
But, it never occurred to me (and obviously it could not be true) that Mr. Melchizedek, on hearing me tell him to "go to hell", actually, somehow, thought I had the power to make this so.
Mr. Melchizedek then went on to fulfill his threat to harm me. This takes us to Mr. Melchizedek's letter to Mr. Winter and Mr. Winter's attorney, Stephen Salai, Esq., and to Meru Foundation's attorney, Brian Coyne, Esq.
If anyone has questions or comments, or would like to see more evidence or whatever, please send your email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Director of Research,