Author Archives: Paul

About Paul

A Subud member since 2004, a local helper and the Rental Agent for Subud Greater Seattle from 2011, to 2020 Paul is a poet with 5 published books on poetry and poetics and is father to two beautiful girls.

Sebastian Tedrow and Chuck Cary

Archives Interview Weekend

On March 4, 5 & 6, the Subud USA Archives interview project came to Seattle. Two experienced interviewers, Benjamin Boyce and your humble narrator, working closely under the auspices of the SUSA Archives project, interviewed several long-time Subud members about their experience in Subud, how they found out about the organization and what practicing Latihan has meant for their lives. The schedule was packed:


5:00 – Paul Nelson with Benjamin Boyce


10am – Jim and Lucinda O’Halloran with Paul Nelson
11am – Elisha Gullixson with Paul Nelson
12N – Sebastian and Lorraine Tedrow with Paul Nelson
2pm – Evan and Annie Padilla with Benjamin Boyce
3pm – Halstein Stralberg with with Benjamin Boyce
4pm – Daniel Stralberg with Benjamin Boyce
5pm – Halimah Bellows with Benjamin Boyce


12N – Danela Mauguin with Paul Nelson
1pm – Sebastian Tedrow and Chuck Cary with Paul Nelson on the founding of Subud Greater Seattle and the acquisition of the Subud House
2pm – Hanafi Libman with Benjamin Boyce

Benjamin and I were at the house at 3pm Friday and got things set up. Benjamin’s equipment is perfect for a job like this, it seems to me, though my expertise is audio. We did an interview with me to use as a test run and it came out good. the interviews are rich and touching and it was a lively weekend which aided our community’s harmony. This is incredibly important as we come out of the pandemic. There were people in attendance who had not been to the Subud House in years. I had a moment of very deep gratitude before the interview with Chuck Cary and Sebastian Tedrow. Chuck talked about the metaphysical community in Seattle and how that community was the seed of how Subud Seattle got started. Back then Vancouver, BC, was part of our region and the first Seattle folks got opened by Ronimund Von Bissing. The Quest Bookstore, a Theosophical bookstore that is still open on Capitol Hill, was part of that 1959 milieu. Sebastian is the man most responsible for acquiring the Subud House in 1974 when he was 25 years old!

I loved most of all my time with Danela Mauguin. Her recall of specific things is remarkable and she was magnificent. On Monday she celebrated 57 years in Subud! Some members needed gentle redirection. The Tedrows required only one question during their interview!

I think having two interviewers is an excellent way to go about these things, so one can get a break. It is an intense experience and requires very high concentration. To aid recall, I have added a question that I did not ask this weekend, about the Subud friends people had/have. This could lead to stories. Since these interviews will not be made available to the general public like some other interviews being done at this time, encouraging interviewees to say anything they want, to be as “woo-woo” as they want, would be something I would encourage.

Spreading out the interviews to allow for some down time is critical. I believe we should tape in the Men’s Latihan hall next time, because the bathroom and a kitchen are connected and the background is unimportant. I think interviews with all members should be encouraged as it could be a time capsule in a way and be a record of where members are, what they are about, at this time.

I want to say that we have been discussing this project for a long time and now that it is here, I am filled with gratitude for this community and awe at how much work the SUSA Archives committee has done to make this happen. I pray that we can continue this in an harmonious way, keeping our eyes on the end game which is creating open spaces where Subud people of all ages can talk about their experiences with this remarkable practice and community. Benjamin got some wonderful photos.

Danela Mauguin

Hanafi Libman

Sebastian Tedrow and Chuck Cary

Lorraine and Sebastian Tedrows


SUSA Archive Interviews

Subud USA is helping the SUSA Archives project conduct interviews with long-time Subud members in Seattle, March 4-6, 2022. These interviews are to focus on one’s life in Subud and Subud experiences. Benjamin Boyce and Paul Nelson will be conducting interviews and the schedule is below. All interviews will be conducted in the women’s Latihan hall at the Seattle Subud House.


5:00 – Paul Nelson with Benjamin Boyce


10am – Jim and Lucinda O’Halloran with Paul Nelson
11am – Elisha Gullixson with Paul Nelson
12N – Sebastian and Lorraine Tedrow with Paul Nelson
2pm – Evan and Annie Padilla with Benjamin Boyce
3pm – Halstein Stralberg with with Benjamin Boyce
4pm – Daniel Stralberg with Benjamin Boyce
5pm – Halimah Bellows with Benjamin Boyce


12N – Danela Mauguin with Paul Nelson
1pm – Sebastian Tedrow and Chuck Cary with Paul Nelson
2pm – Hanafi Libman with Benjamin Boyce

The archives project is prioritizing older members. We expect there will be future weekends when interviews are conducted for those who were missed the first time. All interviews have been confirmed by the interviewers and the SUSA Archives project, led by Lucas Boladian and Matthew Clark, with the assistance of Laura Paterson.

Ibu Rahayu has asked that these interviews not be made available to the general public, which of course includes posting on Facebook and other social media sites. The SUSA Archives committee is doing everything possible to ensure these interviews are conducted and presented in the best way. Individual members are asked to refrain from conducting interviews without working in concert with the SUSA Archives effort, which has been going on for almost two years and has taken care to address legal, ethical and other issues in the best way possible.

Meet New Member Robert Westmoreland

Sebastian Tedrow, Halstein Stralberg, Robert Westmoreland, Evan Padilla and Marston Gregory, May 18, 2021

The pandemic lockdown, now some 440 days in, at least had some good news for Subud Greater Seattle. We had an opening! Please meet Robert Westmoreland, who lives in Everett and was opened Sunday, May 16, 2021, after the regular Latihan. I asked him for a bio and he sent this!

I was born on March 27, 1956, in Gadsden, Alabama. Just before my 7th birthday, my family moved to Louisville, Kentucky, and that is what I consider my “home town”. I was very shy and bookish, and spent most of my time avoiding people (who generally make no sense to me) and reading books. I was raised a Southern Baptist, and at 10 or 11 years old I “made a confession of faith” and was baptized. About a year later, I realized I couldn’t honestly believe the religion I was taught and quit attending church. I have ever since been looking for some spiritual center of gravity for my life, with no real success.

In college, I majored first in Psychology, then switched to Linguistics. In the ’80s, I got a master’s degree in Applied Linguistics at the University of Hawaii, then got a job at the University of Louisville teaching English as a second language, which I did for about 8 years. In 1990, I scandalously married one of my students, a woman from Japan; in 2005, we were divorced. I am embarrassed to say that after 15 years of earnest struggle, I was not able to learn more than rudimentary Japanese.

During the ’90s, I studied at Indiana University for a PhD in Linguistics. Afterwards, for about a year I tried unsuccessfully to get an academic job in Linguistics, and eventually found a position with Microsoft working as a “linguistic tester” for the Office proofing tools. This is what brought me to Washington. While at Microsoft, I taught myself programming, and became a software tester. I worked there for about 14 years. During that time, I met my girlfriend Janet and we have been happily unmarried together ever since. I worked a few years at Starbucks as a software engineer, then about a year at Premera Blue Cross. I lost that job due to the Covid crisis, and decided to throw in the towel and retire. This should work so long as I am careful with my spending, the world economy doesn’t collapse, the government doesn’t up and cancel Social Security, and I don’t live much past 92.

So here I am. I read too much, listen to oddball music, like to cook (but nothing complicated), and volunteer a couple of days a month at a food bank.

Please introduce yourself when you next come to Latihan and welcome this Brother to our community.

Updated Latihan Guidelines



The Helper Dewan met on Sunday, March 21, 2021, and decided that it was now appropriate for 8 women to gather for Latihan at the Subud House and 8 men until further notice. This will be reviewed at the regular third Sunday Helpers meeting in April. Masks are required and each person practicing must sign a release to hold Subud Greater Seattle harmless. Release forms are in the respective halls. Paul Nelson will serve as main helper for the men and Annie Padilla for the women. We will operate under Phase Three Guidelines as issued by the State of Washington.

Members are welcome to attend, are asked to follow CDC guidelines and are encouraged to be two weeks past their final vaccination before practicing in person.

Sunday, March 28 after Latihan there will be a Night of the Ancestors Latihan for those who care to have one. (See this from 2020.)

Zoom With Your SGS Bros & Sisters SUNDAY

This Sunday the post-Latihan Zoom room will be open and you are invited to share your story about how 2021 is going SO FAR, or just hang out with your Subud Sisters and Brothers. Details:

SUBUD zoom is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Post Latihan Zoom
Time: Jan 10, 2021 11:30 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 988 202 1449
One tap mobile
+12532158782,,9882021449# US (Tacoma)
+16699006833,,9882021449# US (San Jose)
Dial by your location
        +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
        +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
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        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
        +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington D.C)
Meeting ID: 988 202 1449
Find your local number:

A reminder that this Sunday there will be a resumption of in-person Latihan at the Subud House. Men and Women must enter directly into the Latihan Hall and NOT attempt to go into the house. For details, contact a local helper. Waivers are available in the Men’s Latihan Hall if you have not yet signed one. The Helper on call is responsible for sanitizing the surfaces after Latihan is over. Keep a six foot distance, wear masks at all times and limit each latihan hall to four participants.

Zoomooka? SICAmooka?

Luther Schutz


We’ll celebrate Subud culture on Friday, November 13, 2020, at 7pm PST on Zoom with a virtual rendition of the annual SPNW Kejiwaan event’s culture night. Each performer will take five minutes to give you a taste of their art and those confirmed include:

Susilawati Bryant, Hamilton Cheifetz, Michael Cooke, Elisha Gullixson, Ramon Hildreth, Lucas Hille, Michael Koach, David Lynch, Morris McClellan, Jim O’Halloran, Albert Palmeter, Lawrence Pevec, Riantee Rand, Renata Reid and Luther Schutz.

Paul E Nelson is inviting you to a ZooMooka.

Topic: SICA-USA ZooMooka
Time: Nov 13, 2020 07:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 206 422 5002
One tap mobile
+12532158782,,2064225002# US (Tacoma)
+13462487799,,2064225002# US (Houston)

Dial by your location
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose)
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
+1 301 715 8592 US (Germantown)
Meeting ID: 206 422 5002
Find your local number:

Here is info on some of the performers:

Ramon Hildreth,


of 3 daughters,

IT Engineer,














Susilawati Bryant

*Susilawati was born on Kaien Island in The North Pacific, just south of The Alaska Panhandle, in the Canadian province of British Columbia. She was raised in the colonial cities of Prince George, Vancouver, & Kelowna, BC.

“Born Singing!” is a title of one of her albums. When meeting a new human she is often heard saying “Hello! My name is Susilawati & I would rather sing than talk & I would rather swim than walk.” Still true, today. From reverie to the irreverent, & some might say irrelevant, Susila’s writing is significantly influenced by rhythm, rhyme, & the zeitgeist of her times.

Susilawati was Class Poet for her Prince George 1962 Graduation Class, continuing with a UBC Memoir-writing group of five since 2004, & was accepted into SFU’s Editing Certificate Program.

Lucas Hille: Music Bio (the Subud version)

I began singing in the 1960’s, an outcome of my spiritual practice called Subud.

In the early days, I sang in Subud cover bands, one of which was named “The Open Jaw Flight Band.” We had some illustrious gigs in a few Legion Halls in and around Vancouver.

At some point, early on, a few songs came to me, mainly in Country style, because some of the music I enjoyed and played was in that genre. In time, more complex songs began showing up, such as “Little Boys’ Pockets”, aka, “The Child In Me.”

At the time, a reporter who heard me sing “Pockets” at an open mic wrote:

“Lucas isn’t Dylan and he isn’t Lightfoot. He might just be better.” In hindsight, I think her comments both excited and scared me.

In the mid to late 1970’s, a singing Subud brother, Isman Kanafsky, moved to Vancouver, and we formed a band to support the songs he had received. We played mainly at local Subud functions, although we did travel in my Volkswagen Van to San Mateo, ostensibly to play for Bapak, who was giving talks there. Once we had arrived, Isman received that it would not be right for us to play for Bapak, which was disappointing and a bit frustrating, to say the least. This group dis-banded when Isman moved back to the U.S. Isman sparked, for me, an interest in singing and playing from inner guidance, although it would be many years before I would get close to having that experience. Ah, purification….

To follow my dream of being a Country artist, I went to Nashville in the 1990’s and recorded two songs with a label there. This was not a pleasant experience, however, it was a learning one, and I returned to Vancouver more determined to follow music as a spiritual, healing path.

Joining me on this path were Miles Simons on saxophone and Salvador Pedraza on acoustic bass. We released one album, “Destination Peace Of Mind”, from the title of one of Isman’s songs. Sadly, Salvador had to move home to Mexico, and he was replaced by Paul Edwards on Warr Guitar. Our band name was “Spirit Road”, and we played at local coffee houses, churches, one festival and one Subud conference.

In 2016, I recorded and released “Spirit Road”, an EP featuring my daughter, Veda, Kim Brandt on bass and guitar, and Sophia-Ray Schmidt, the daughter of Petrice Brett, reading her amazing poem, “Breathe Out, Breathe In.” This EP was the closest I have come to releasing a fully SICA project: the cover image was an original painting by Aisjah Cassidy, the layout and graphics were by Arifin Graham-an award winning Subud designer, photography by Simone Cherpitel, and, most of the musicians were in Subud. In reviewing this EP, Harris Smart wrote: “This is a collection of original songs with a spiritual resonance. There is definitely a light, peaceful, devotional feeling to these songs.”

I am currently working on a new, 5-song EP with help from my amazing daughter, Veda.

You can find me on:, Spotify and at

The journey continues…

With love and Spirit,


Morris “Mo Mack” McClellan

Morris “Mo Mack” McClellan has been steeped in traditional and roots music. He grew up in a musical family where he was introduced to many forms of folk music, and went on to study the history of Country & Western Music in college. Now, his performances feature old country music, blues, rock & roll, classic folk, contemporary folk, and his own compositions.

About Jim O’Halloran

Music means everything to me. I love it because it challenges me to find my center and connection with each note—and the silence between each note— and because it’s a shared experience that impacts each individual differently.

I’ve performed internationally with various ensembles, including leading the Afro-Cuban jazz bands Chela and Freezerburn. My experience over the years has given me not only an extensive list of tunes, but a deep reserve of excellent players to call for specific needs.

I’m currently playing with my own groups, including the Jim O’Halloran Trio, quartet, quintet, and sextets which specialize in jazz, Afro-Cuban, and African music.

When I’m not playing or writing music, I enjoy reading, bicycling, spending time with family, and cardiac electrophysiology (yes, really—I’m an RN-recently retired). I also love going on walks near our home in Seattle with Lyle, the best dog in the world.

Jim O’Halloran, Flute

Jim graduated Magna Cum Laude from Eastern Washington University. He did post graduate study with Felix Skowronek and attended master classes with Julius Baker and James Galway. Jim has played internationally based out of Seattle since the late 1970’s. He was the leader and composer for afro-cuban jazz bands Chela and Freezerburn. Jim has played with Orquestra Yerbabuena, Mambo Cadillac, Expresión Latina, Global Village, Orquesta Ilusion, Latin Dimension, Orchestra Zarabanda, the Deano’s House Band, Michael Nicolella, Bochinche, and Charanga Danzon. Jim is currently playing with his own group, the Jim O’Halloran Trio and Quintet including top Seattle players D’Vonne Lewis, Royce Shorter, Jr., Jacques Willis, Marina Albero, Bill Anschell, Dean Schmidt, Farko Dosumov, Osama Afifi, Ben Verdier, Ricardo Guity, Lance Lu, and Denny Stern.

Jim’s music is available on Spotify, Amazon, and iTunes.

Riantee Rand

Riantee Rand was born in Paris, France, where her first book of French poetry was published. After traveling around the world she moved to the Mendocino Coast with her husband and 3 children in 1973. She participated in poetry readings, radio shows and contributed to reviews, magazines and anthologies with her poetry, articles and short stories all over the country. She has been a translator of French Poetry and Art Essays. Two books of her poetry, one of non-fiction, one of travel stories and a fictionalized memoir are in print as well as her first book for children.

Renata Reid

Renata Reid is an acupuncturist, a silk painter, designer, and writer of poems. She divides her time unevenly between these avocations to alternately satisfy her muse and the need for food, shelter, and a lifelong addiction to fine art supplies and visiting distinctly soulful places. You can find her on social media or by googling the first two words of this bio, especially when combined with the words, “Alison” and “Bretell” or “silkpoetry.”




Luther Schutz bio

Luther Schutz

Luther Schutz

I grew up in NYC in a musical family, the son of Juilliard graduates. My father worked on Broadway musicals and I remember spending a lot of time backstage over the years.

Leaving NYC for California and medical school at age 21, I became part of the Bay Area folk music scene.
In the ensuing years I have been a singer-songwriter, a member of several bands and vocal ensembles, including Inner Voices, Midlife Crisis, and Equinox. Lately I have been singing jazz standards and exploring the Great American Songbook with my dear friend and brother Elisha Gullixson.

I have lived in rural northwest Washington for the last 43 years with Maryam, my wife of 50 years. I retired in 2010 after a 33 year career as an ER doctor. We have four children and eight grandsons!

New Helper, In-Person Latihans

The Helper Dewan of Subud Great Seattle met via Zoom, Sunday, October 18, 2020, and discussed current issues. Sebastian Tedrow talked about the Tuesday, 10am Men’s Latihan in person at the Subud House. We have attempted to establish a telephone link but no one seems to be using that. Testing on the in-person Latihans showed that in-person Latihans are of most benefit. They are higher than doing it alone, simultaneous (not on the phone) and on the phone. In an actual phone Latihan Sebastian received that he DOES have helper responsibilities. He reported that he no one should do “ad-hoc” (unscheduled) Latihan at the Subud House.

A discussion of keys and comfort ensued, as well as proper COVID protocol and the need for all participants to sign waivers, copies of which are posted in the Men’s hall and in a pile awaiting signatures.
That women and men are not doing Latihan at the same time was brought up by Lucinda O’Halloran and women felt there was a lack of respect in making this decision.
Evan Padilla joined the meeting and was asked if he would be interested in becoming active again as a Helper. He agreed he would in a limited capacity and Men broke off to test and found that it was positive and Evan will join the Tuesday helper rotation and will be part of a Sunday rotation, both of which Latihans will commence at the Subud House in the Men’s Hall.

The first In-Person Sunday Latihan for the Men will happen November 1 at 11am.

The clean rugs in the Men’s hall look beautiful again.

Men’s Tuesday Latihan 10am

Due to a member request and a poll of those men who have attended Tuesday Latihan, the time will be moved up an hour to 10am as of September 28, 2020. In the COVID lockdown era this became a de facto Regional Latihan and the call-in option continues though some men will be practicing in person at the Subud House, with very strict COVID protocols, including the mandatory wearing of masks and the wiping down and disinfecting of surfaces after. Men should enter via the basement door. (See lower right of photo.)

If you require more information contact Paul Nelson, Subud Greater Seattle local helper, at (206) 422.5002. Be safe and well.

Paul Nelson Surviving Prostate Cancer

Paul E Nelson (Photo by Philip Brautigam)

I was diagnosed with prostate cancer on February 17, 2020 and had highly-targeted radiation treatment in Late June and early July and I am recovering. Along the way I had the Subud community helping me test treatment options, letting me know this form of cancer is quite survivable, helping me with my attitude and I had sisters and brothers praying for me.

To have a spiritual community is a real blessing ESPECIALLY during such a challenge. I think it is the birthright of all humans and yet it seems quite special to me. I am grateful for this and, during Latihans, have had some of the most visceral experiences of gratitude I have ever had in my life right down there in that basement hall where I was opened June 27, 2004. The same room where we did a special Latihan for my Dad when he died on May 11, 2014.

You would think that to have cancer treatment in the middle of a pandemic and also contend with the loss of a job would make 2020 a crummy year, but I see all this as a gift. (I no longer handle lodging for the Subud House.) That my guidance has been excellent and that I trust that guidance, has made things surprisingly easy. Vaya con Dios say Spanish speakers and Subud has helped train me to understand that there is a plan designed by a life force much more intelligent (& PATIENT) than me. I am beginning to trust that.

What is also interesting about this journey is the personal mythology side of this. “Mental fears weaken the masculinity” is the thought pattern that Louise Hay says could be at the root of this issue. To have her work as a guide in understanding the spiritual side of this and an excellent care team at Swedish led by Dr. Robert Meier handling the Cyberknife treatment has been a blessing.

To also have POPO (poetry postcard fest) happening all summer, was another outlet for me to turn energy, that years ago, might have been used for worry, into creativity. Below are two examples of postcards I sent out about the treatment. Thank you for being part of Subud, this life-affirming organization that has enriched my life.


Helper Meeting Minutes

Our newest Helper Aakarsh Gottumukala took the minutes from the Sunday, July 19, 2020, Helper’s Meeting which happened via Zoom. Here is his report:

Helpers Present: Aakarsh Gottumukkala, Danella Mauguin, David Lynch, Halimah Bellows, Halstein Stralberg, Hanafi Libman, Paul Nelson, Sebastian Tedrow, Lucinda O’Hallaran.

Helpers Not Present: Rachman Cantrell, Rayma Norton

During our helper meeting on Sunday, we discussed the issues of restarting in-person latihan at the Subud house and converting the upstairs bedrooms of the Subud Seattle house into rental office spaces. Most helpers present were unwilling to test about reopening the Subud house, as per Evan Padilla’s request. The general feeling at the meeting was that it is unwise to reopen the Subud house in Seattle at this time. As an alternative, the possibilities of doing latihan at Halstein Stralberg’s house or joining the group latihan in Olympia on Saturday mornings at 10 AM were proposed. Members wishing to do so should contact Halstein in the case of the former and David Lynch in the case of the latter. Regarding the issue of changing the enterprise at the Subud Seattle center, the general consensus was that this may prove unwise.

The next helper meeting is on the third Sunday, August 16.

Rachman Cantrell via email added:

Thanks, Paul, for catching me up.  I agree with you about holding off on group latihan.  I am becoming more in favor of the call in latihans and hope more people participate.  My latihan last friday was particularly strong and different!  Even more so than when we did group latihan!