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Subud is an international spiritual association of people who practice the latihan, founded in the early part of the 20th century by Bapak

The word "Subud" is actually a short form of an acronym formed from three Javanese words (originally Sanskrit): ‘Susila’, ‘Budhi’ and ‘Dharma’. Susila is living in accordance with the highest moral principles (or the highest teachings of our religion); Budhi is the Power of awakening that is within us; and Dharma is complete submission to the divine Source of our being. The term thus sums up the whole of our practice and our eventual goal. As an organization, Subud exists to support the process of the latihan and to provide a vehicle for its expression in the world.

What is Subud?

Subud is a description of an ideal human nature. It refers to a person who displays truly humane qualities, who receives God's grace, and who is totally surrendered towards God.

Members of the Subud association try to become more Subud by practicing the Latihan. The Latihan is a form of worship in which Subud members completely surrender themselves to God, and feel an inner movement or vibration within themselves, which does not come from their own desires or thinking, but from the power of God.

The Latihan first purifies the soul of the worshiper, and then allows it to grow, so that eventually the person is able to discover his own individuality.

What happens when you get opened?

If you want to be a Subud member, you have to get opened. "Opening" is the name given to your first latihan. The usual process is that the applicant and the helpers stand in a circle. One of the helpers reads out the opening words, explaining what is going on, and the applicant states his wish to worship God. One of the helpers says begin, and they all start doing Latihan.

If you want to join Subud, you need to contact some Subud members near you, and arrange to go to them and talk about it. You need to go their regularly to show you are serious in your wish to be opened, with the usual time delay between your first meeting with the local group and your first Latihan (or opening) being 3 months.

Who's Bapak?

Bapak is the founder of Subud. An Indonesian from Java, he was born in 1901. He had a series of spiritual experiences during the 1930s which culminated his soul being taken up to heaven. He received the Latihan and was able to pass on this form of worship to other people.

Bapak came to the west in 1957, and during several world tours opened thousands of people, and today Subud groups exist worldwide. Bapak died peacefully in 1987, and the Subud association today consists of some ten to fifteen thousand members worldwide.


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