Lakshmi (Center)
Organization founded by former English professor Dr.
Frederick Lenz, who was a disciple under guru Sri Chinmoy
for 11 years. Given the name Atmananda by his guru, Lenz
began teaching yoga in Los Angeles and throughout Southern
California. His students reported a number of extraordinary
experiences during his classes, including that Lenz was seen to
levitate and disappear completely during group meditations
and to radiate intense beams of light.
Lenz formed the Lakshmi center in the 1970s as an independent
organization. Lakshmi is the Hindu goddess of fortune
and the consort of Vishnu. In the early 1980s Lenz announced
to a gathering of his students that Eternity had given
him the new name ‘‘Rama.’’ Accordingly, in 1985 Lakshmi was
superseded by a new organization, Rama Seminars.
As Rama, Lenz teaches that humanity is approaching the
end of a cycle. The present period is the Kali Yuga, the dark
age of devolution. At the end of each cycle or age, the god Vishnu
is due to become incarnated. While Rama (Lenz) does not
claim to be the same conscious entity as the historic Rama (the
hero of the religious epic Ramayana and a previous incarnation
of Vishnu), Lenz does claim to be the embodiment of the ‘‘particular
octave of celestial light which was once before incarnated
as the historic Rama.’’
Rama Seminars was headquartered in southern California
through the 1980s. However, a scandal, occasioned by accusation
of abuse by several of Lenz’s students, disrupted the organization,
which has moved its headquarters to the East Coast.
Sources
The Last Incarnation. Malibu, Calif. Lakshmi Publications,
1983.
Lenz, Frederick. Life Times. New York Fawcett Crest, 1979.
Rama [Frederic Lenz]. The Wheel of Dharma. Malibu, Calif.
Lakshmi Publications, 1982.

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