I have given a great deal of thought to the connection between the Charles Manson cult, the Untermyer Park Satanic (Son of Sam) cult of Yonkers, NY, the Process Church, and Minot AFB, and have arrived at the following conclusions:
It is obvious that the most sympathetic historical treatment (See: http://www.religioustolerance.org/process.htm
), of the Process Church is self-serving, as it claims:
"A book about Charles Manson, "The Family", claimed that Manson was a member of The Process. The Church obtained apologies and retractions to the book after it brought about a suit against the publisher. Because of the time it took to bring about the retractions, a large portion of book sales had occurred; so many of the books (without retractions) are on shelves today."
Whereas, an apparently more objective history notes that another religious organization filed, and won, the lawsuit named in the above-excerpted article (and please note that the above-excerpted article points out the temporal sequence of the filing of the Process Church's lawsuit and subsequent retractions, in an, apparently, false attempt to claim that such retractions were the CONSEQUENCE of the Process Church's lawsuit:http://firstname.lastname@example.org/msg26476.html
"Regarding Terry's claims linking the O.T.O. to the Manson/Sam/Process
"conspiracy", he apparently derived that theory from rather flimsy evidence
that Manson was at one time involved with the Solar Lodge of the O.T.O.,
which during the 1960's was headed by a woman named Jean Brayton of
California and her husband. Terry either didn't know, or didn't care that
this particular lodge was considered to be a renegade group and not
officially sanctioned by any legitimate branch of the real Ordo Templi
Orientis. Like the Process and Ed Sanders, a California branch of the O.T.O.
filed a legal suit against Terry for defamation, which Terry lost. Appealing
all the way to the Supreme Court, the case was subsequently settled out of
court in the O.T.O's favor with a cash settlement for an undisclosed amount
and an agreement to strike all references of the O.T.O. from future editions
of The Ultimate Evil."
Anyways, while a Christian such as myself might argue in favor of some elements of the Process Church's theology (as in the following passage from the first cited article:
"These beliefs led to a love for Satan - not to his acts but to Satan, the Being."
which recognizes the truth that God loves all of his creatures unconditionally, and that all men are, not of their own merit but purely through perfect docility to the influence of the Holy Spirit, required to emulate God in all respect prior to admission into Heaven . (OK, so I'm a Catholic, and I've just made an argument for the existence of Purgatory! What else did you expect?
that same article, in the very next paragraph, clearly distorts the true relationship between God and Satan:
"The Christian church has historically taught a dual concept of divinity. That is, that there are two more or less equal powers in the universe: Christ and Satan; one all good - the other all bad.",
whereas Christianity actually teaches that God is the Creator and that Satan, a fallen angel and, therefor, a mere creature, possesses only that power which God allows him in order to demonstrate, neither to Himself nor to Satan, but to the individual human soul who freely chooses (OK, so here I'm being a Catholic again!) condemnation as preferable to salvation, that soul's own discomfort with the requirements of salvation.
Besides, if the Process Church really is such a force for good in the world, then why did its founder, Robert Moore, change his name to the much more alarming moniker Robert de Grimston (as in grim stone (and this is supposed to be a movement for personal improvement?), and even brimstone)?
Even so, with the second cited article indicating clearly that the Church was centred primarily in England and in Mexico, why was that little cell in remote Minot, ND (home of Minot AFB (and not Offutt AFB, which is actually in Omaha, NB!) which, in turn, is the home of the US nuclear stockpile, and is located near the geographic center of North America), the apparent hub of activity connecting Los Angeles and Yonkers? It would appear to me that the relationships between Manson, Son of Sam, and Minot AFB are much more central to the story than is the relationship of either cult to The Process (though both cults may have borrowed important elements (however distorted) of their theology from The Process). It is also apparent that The Process dissolved itself as a legal, corporate entity prior to the Son of Sam murders, but this does not necessarily imply that the social networks that had grown up around The Process had completely evaporated, even if they required artificial maintenance, as might have here been the case considering John Carr's extraordinarily unusual lifestyle, according to the "Unsolved Mysteries" segments concerning the Son of Sam case, of commuting back and forth between Minot and Yonkers!
Whatever may have been The Process' role in the Manson killings and Son of Sam killings, it seems entirely secondary to the role played by the obvious geographical nexus: Minot AFB.