Maestro Manuel Rufino
Maestro Manuel Rufino was born in Quisqueya, known by the Tainos (an original tribe of the Caribbean) as “mother of all lands”. Today, Quisqueya is called the Dominican Republic, which is the name given by the Spanish.
He was born on May 4, 1958 under the May Full Moon of the Wesak, called by the Buddhist tradition, the “Buddha Full Moon” and “Flower Moon” by the native people. He was born in a humble home but with great spiritual riches. Since he was little, he leaned towards the arts and with a great concern towards medicine because his mother was a nurse and most of his uncles and aunts leaned towards healing.
Maestro Manuel studied art in high school at the Luchhetti School of Arts and at the School of Fine Arts in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He did his college studies at the Arts Students League of New York. Maestro Manuel has participated in many arts exhibitions and was also a member of the circle of poets in New York City.
At the age of 18, Maestro Manuel Rufino began his training as a vegetarian chef. He went on to work in some of the most popular vegetarian restaurants and health food stores in New York, California, Mexico and Puerto Rico. There he shared recipes, nutritional information and how to heal through diet. He also studied natural medicine under the guidance of Bernard Jensen.
Maestro Manuel Rufino has traveled through all the continents of the world carrying the message of peace and unity to help reestablish the original harmony and the postulates of the New Era. He is currently in the 5th degree in the Mayan Sovereign Solar Order of Chichaan Itzaab (S.O.S.X.I) and has been recognized as an elder in many traditions. However, Maestro Manuel prefers not to claim titles and to be a simple human being at the service of the world and all its inhabitants on land, air, water and fire.
Maestro Manuel Rufino has established communities and cultural centers in Europe, North, Central and South America to share the postulates of unity and the American Indian Tradition. He has taught yoga and meditation for over 42 years throughout the world.
Maestro Manuel is the founder of the Heart & Mind Festival, which attracts some of the most influential leaders in the spiritual, scientific, artistic, diplomatic and philosophical spheres of our time. Maestro Manuel is also the founder of Golden Drum, a cultural center in Brooklyn and the Sacred Arts Research Foundation, a 501(c)(3) whose mission is to provide support for the sacred arts.
He is the World Director of the Movement of American Indian Solar Culture, a 501(c)(3) dedicated to serving the community by focusing on sharing Amerikua Wisdom, founded by his teacher, Maestro Domingo Dias Porta. He is the founder of the Jungle Café, a vegetarian restaurant in Brooklyn, NY and the visionary behind the Blue Wolf in Canada, Golden Beehive community in London, England and the White Eagle’s Nest in Warsaw.
Tata Pedro Cruz
Nana Marina Cruz
His holy memory TATA PEDRO CRUZ was one of the few surviving members of the Mayan Council of the Elders of Tz’utujil, which is a branch of the Maya Qui-che. “Tata Pedro,” as he was most affectionately known, is a traditional Mayan Ajq’ij and Day Keeper, and one of the principal authorities of the Council of Mayan Elders of Lake Atitlan in Guatamala. He received the title “Heart of the Lake Atitlan” K’U’XYA by his fellow Mayan Council of Elders and Tz’utujil people. Tata Pedro recognized the interconnectedness of all people, the expanding consciousness of the planet, and the urgent need to unify our spiritual, cultural, and ethnic wisdom for the benefit of the planet and humanity. Tata Pedro was a globally recognized elder in the Mayan tradition and has traveled far and wide sharing knowledge, ceremonies, and practices. He was the interpreter of dreams for his community and a leader of the preservation and education of Mayan day keeping and fire ceremonies.
Nana Marina Cruz is a healer from the Tz ́utujil Tribe, and is a spiritual guide of the old traditions. She is the daughter of Tata Pedro & works not just as a healer and therapist with natural folk methods, but as a ceremonial leader of fire, tobacco, cacao and sweat lodge, and also teaches native Mayan languages.
Maestro Domingo Dias Porta
Maestro Domingo Dias Porta was born in Caracas, Venezuela in 1930. Under his guidance, the Initiatic Sovereign Solar Order of Chichaan Itzaab (S.O.S.X.I.) has developed in different places in Venezuela, Mexico, the United States, Europe and Peru. He has founded and organized cultural and spiritual activities in almost all countries in the Americas, in 10 European countries, in Israel and in Morocco.
He is the founder of the Association of the Solar American Indian (M.A.I.S.) Movement of Cultural Approach to the Autonomous Traditions and Peoples of the Continent. He is also the founder of “Acción por la Unidad Mundial” (A.U.M. – Action for Global Unity), a movement of International Cultural Integration to promote a culture of peace through dialogue of personal transformation, through exchange of knowledge, and joint participation in activities and programs (both on the individual and group level).
Elder Brother Jose Manuel Estrada
By Gag-Pa Anita Montero Campion, Written in 1974
It was 10 a.m. on a Sunday morning 74 years ago–July 28th, 1900–that Sat Arhat Jose Manuel Estrada was born in Caracas, Venezuela to a humble but spiritually aristocratic family. Even as a small child he was always interested in exploring the mysteries of Life and studying the movements of the Sun, Moon and Halley’s Comet which appeared in those days. His esoteric search grew out of a natural instinct. This search was ever present as he followed traditional school studies. Later he initiated research into hermetic teachings and esotericism, acquiring the higher degree in Rosicrucian, Masonic and Theosophical rites. But esoteric erudition did not disclose Superior Initiation to him. His sole objective was as Inner Realization of Truth. He is living proof of the statement: wisdom comes from within and knowledge comes from without. This search continued while he earned his living through wood-carving and guitar playing. He also displayed an interest in social welfare by leading several labor “unions.” Life led him to form a family and to raise several children.
When he was 36 years old he underwent an Illumination which caused him to spread news of the arrival of an Avatar. He did not know where of when the Avatar would arrive; in fact, he went to meet anyone who presented himself as a prophet or illuminated being, but none could answer the key questions he asked. This continued for 9 years. One cold day in 1947 as he met with a study group in his home, they read an announcement in the newspaper of the arrival of Dr. Serge Raynaud de la Ferriere, Spiritual Missionary of Aquarius, a renowned astrologer and scientist. The group decided to go meet this man. Upon their arrival Sat-Guru Serge Raynaud de la Ferriere greeted them, saying: “May Peace be with you . . . I have come to see who is ready to listen to the Great Eternal Lesson.” Jose Manuel Estrada answered him: “I have been awaiting you for the past 9 years and I have a group ready to receive your teachings.” Turning to his group he introduced the MAESTRE by saying: ECCE HOMO (This is the Man).
From that moment on, the dynamics of Guru and Chellah unfolded and, with them, the establishment of the Universal Great Brotherhood for the Aquarian Age, following the ancient tradition of teachings given from Teacher to Disciple, from lip to ear. Sat-Arhat Estrada was then sent by his Teacher to every country of South, Central and North America to announce the beginning of the Aquarian Age. The dawning of the Age of Aquarius-the 21st of March, 1948–opens a Golden Age for the elevation of Human Consciousness, the marriage of Science and Religion. Being a Leo, Guru Estrada spreads his spiritual fire through the personal example of his daily life, which is that of surrendering to his Spiritual Master and giving Service to everyone he encounters. His teachings include exercises to keep the body and mind in perfect health (psycho-physicals), the practice of Yoga asanas and meditation, balancing all this with plenty of Karma-Yoga (unconditional service).
In 1959 he retired from the public scene for 40 months and re-appeared with Sister Gag-Pa Carlota his wife, and a small baby. Once more he began the work of serving Humanity but this time as part of a Family Unit.
Sat-Arhat Dr. Jose Manuel Estrada is the First Disciple of Sat Guru Serge Raynaud de la Ferriere, the oldest and the one with greatest Spiritual Realization; therefore he is addressed as Venerable ELDER BROTHER.
In 1963 he re-opened Spiritual Pilgrimages for the American Continent in Machu-Picchu, Peru. On the Summer Solstice, June 22, 1974, he led the Second Pilgrimage, with the participation of approximately 500 pilgrims from South, Central and North America. These events were to honor and announce the birth of a new Aquarian Civilization on the American Continent, the coming together of Men and Women to live in Harmony, Peace and with an Understanding of the Highest Truths in Life.
The Most Venerable and Sublime ELDER BROTHER is the LIVING SYMBOL of REAL INITIATION and his life, example, and teachings are to be followed by the student on the Path. This is why he has come through the Sacred Word TO DARE. He has the characteristics of LEO, which are action, dynamism and true spirituality. LEO is ruled by the SUN and the Elder Brother is transmitting the SOLAR INITIATION which is expressed by the head and the paws of a Lion in the Sphinx at Gizeh; all this means CHRISTIFICATION.
“Follow the example of the sandalwood tree which perfumes the axe that cuts it through.”
“For two thousand years mankind has closed its eyes in order to contact inner divinity. Now the time has arrived to open the eyes and yet stay in contact with the Divinity. God is everywhere; inside, outside, above and below. Always stay alert and watch the Divinity unfolding through every person, animal and thing, always and everywhere.”
“Our Planet earth is a school and life here is like participating in the elementary grades. If you learn your lesson here you will enter High School, College, and later on you will attend the Spiritual University.”
“The human embryo in 9 months unfolds following the entire process of life’s evolution, from fish to a human being. In a similar manner, an Initiate experiences stages of spiritual awareness following the same process of Spiritual Growth experienced by Great Initiates of all Times.”
“Be natural, Be yourself.”
“An Initiate is not the silent and pensive figure, he is not the sad person, he is not the religious person nor the individual lost in the clouds. An Initiate is the individual who teaches by his example the way that one must act, think and feel in daily life according to a higher state of consciousness and in correspondence to the progress of humanity. Otherwise he would not be able to teach all humanity.”
“INITIATION is the science of Balance. It is the study of laws and the study of laws is the study of God.”
“To follow the Path one prefers is to accommodate the Path to one’s own personal tastes and concepts. This is not to follow the PATH. Because the PATH is not how the individual imagines or wishes it to be, but rather it just IS . . . One needs to do what needs to be done rather than what can be done.”
“The purpose of Brotherhood is to unite, to study and to build. To live in harmony with everyone, with those who want to come together and with those who do not want to.”
“To step into the PATH of REAL INITIATION is to enter into action, to practice it in one’s own flesh and share it with others instead of just wondering about it. Simply to wonder about it is the follow the path of Symbolic Initiation.”
Sat Guru Dr. Serge Raynaud de La Ferriere
Dr. Serge de La Ferriere was born in Paris, France, the son of Georges Constantine Louis Raynaud, who was an engineer, and Virginie Marie Billet. His parents moved to Brussels, Belgium when he was two years old, and his mother died there when he was only five years of age.
He studied at several schools, and attended the Université Catholique de Louvain where he graduated as a mining engineer in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. Although he grew up and studied in Belgium he would return to his native France in his early twenties.
In his early life he was introduced into the Masonic and Rosicrucian lodges by his father, Count de La Ferriere, and achieved many high degrees. He continued the exploration of mind and spirit by studying yoga on his own and later traveling to India where he was recognized as a Sadu by the Hindu Yogis. They introduced him to the deep teachings of the yogic tradition. He was also recognized by the Tibetan tradition as a Rinpoche. He was an expert in linguistics and mastered several languages. He also studied philosophy, Natural Medicine, Theology, Astrology, Esoterism, and Metaphysical Studies. He also studied the ancient Asian, African, American, Celtic, Druidic, and Australian Aboriginal traditions. After all of his searching, he met a teacher in France from the Chinese Tradition named Swung Yung Kuan, who instructed him to fulfill his mission by traveling to the Americas. He was interested in the American Indian traditions from an early age, especially the initiatic tradition of the Mayan, Incan, and Aztec. He had requested a grant from the Government of France to lead an expedition to study the indians of the Americas, but he was denied because France was in war at the time. Regardless, he kept his interest in these ancient initiatic traditions. He first came to New York to meet a man who Sung Yung Kuan told him he would meet. He could not find this man so he went to Guatemala to further study the intitiatic traditions of the Americas. There he met and studied with Mayan Templars. He still could not find the man he was looking for so he continued traveling south. In Caracas, Venezuela he met Jose Manuel Estrada. After checking his astrological chart and the marks on his body, Dr. De La Ferriere recognized Jose Mauel Estrada as the man that he had been looking for. In 1948, Master de La Ferriere founded the Universal Great Brotherhood with Jose Manuel Estrada as co-founder. Then Juan Victor Mejias and Gil Colmenares together with Jose Manuel Estrada became his three main disciples. They established the Supreme Order of Aquarius, as the vision for the New Age.
After 17 months in Venezuela he traveled to New York to host the International Peace Conference. From there he traveled again to India, Tibet, Africa, Australia, and other countries to establish centers for the Universal Great Brotherhood across the world. He then settled down in Nice, France in the French Alps. There, he wrote several books including the Psychological Proposal, The Circular Letters, The White Book, and The Magic of Knowing.
Art in the New Age, a book dedicated to the exhalation of art and the role of the artist in the spiritual and cultural development of a new civilization.
In Yoga Yogism, he talks about the practices, disciplines, and mastery of the yogi Hindu tradition.
The Great Messages and the Black Book of Freemasonry are dedicated to the study of Esoterism.
Astrology/Cosmobiology, Astronomy, and Astrosophy
The Magic of Knowing is a series of pamphlets that covers the science of astronomy as the physical study of the mechanical movement of stars, Astrology/Cosmobiology as the biologic study of stars, and Astrosophy which is the study of the cosmos.
Psychological Works is a set of 36 pamphlets with deep insight on religion, shamanism, magic, and rituals.
During his life he received many spiritual and academic titles. He was a scientist, philosopher, psychologist, theologian, astrologer, mathematician, artist, and spiritual leader. He declared that it would be better if he just be considered a yogi (One who Unites).
We acknowledge the group of his main disciples, Jose Manuel Estrada, Juan Victor Mejias, Gil Colmenares, Linares, and Domingo Dias Porta. We recognize all the Venerable Sat-Arhat and students that served him by helping to spread his teachings by founding cultural and yogic centers, natural medicine clinics, study groups, and Initiatic and esoteric schools.