Sunday, December 9, 2018

Transformation at Esalen (October 1965) A fateful memory.

Event: Late October 1965
Posted: 9 December 2018
Updated: 10 Dec 18

Sunset at Esalen
For niece Kanya:

It was Kanya's FaceBook message during her recent visit to Big Sur that brought again this wonderful memory to mind. When I mentioned this long-ago experience, she expressed interest in the story, which is why I'm posting it below.

She and her partner are touring several western states while she works in a great new job and while on the road when they can find a WiFi connection. Great work if you can find it! When she mentioned they were headed up the California coast on the way to Big Sur, I suggested she make it to Esalen and enjoy soaking in the hot springs there. Alas, there was "no room at the inn" these days without reserving a place well in advance. 

I'm so sorry they couldn't make that particular stop. But, it made me reflect on the history of my current RPK experiment and how it is rapidly coming together from input and help from others of the new "Exoconsciousness" community, free thinking friends and technical colleagues. 

And, it brought to mind a long ago letter to one of my best friends, Joseph Dillard, a psychotherapist now in a thriving practice in Berlin. Joseph and I have been working together since the mid 1980s, when I was an engineering manager in an aerospace firm suffering from a severe morale problem.

Having developed a practical way to solve the problem via utilizing employee dreams, I happened to notice a published article by Joseph and co-author Stanley Krippner on dream work in the workplace. I wrote to Joe immediately to make his acquaintance, flew to Phoenix, where he was then in practice, and we became fast friends and collaborators. 
Now, decades later, this letter to Joseph (which I had lost, but which Joseph has just returned to me) has taken on much new meaning as a precursor to the current RPK, Phase 2 experiment. In June 2011, I wrote:
Subject: Re: Mass continued
Date: June 1, 2011 at 3:04:44 PM GMT+1
To: Joseph Dillard...
Cc: ...

Thank you for your very specific, helpful and loving response!   Yes, I've stopped bus driving for the summer and hope it will lead to resigning by the fall. And I will think about turning  to cross country skiing in the nearby forest next winter...  Yes, the Gazelle is something like an elliptical trainer. And yes, I will now look at doing yoga in a new way.. .When I got to your last paragraph a wonderful, long-ago memory came to mind. [Joseph had written about his most recent IDL activities]:
We are off to the beautiful Toskana Therme in Bad Sulza, near Weimar in Turingen today, to teach a four-day seminar on Rhythm and Flow! We have some twenty-two people registered, which means we are going to have a lot of fun with our drums, bells, painting, rhythm games, and dancing! There will also be interviews and work with meditation - all about getting into the flow of one’s life! Fun! 
How I wish I could be with you in your four-day seminar! I recalled my first experience at "Big Sur Hot Springs" (soon to be known as Esalen) with a Jungian dance group led by Mary Whitehouse and Josie Taylor from Los Angeles. It was late October 1965. I had been brought there by John David Arnold, a "renegade" Episcopal priest whom I'd met only days earlier and at whose "Ranch of the Way" in Ben Loman I'd stayed for a couple of days after leaving home in San Diego for the wilderness of northern California. I had sung to John David and his Big Sur guest "Mike" while at the Ranch and John David wanted a larger group of Big Sur people to hear me sing, which is why I was now there, having just been introduced to this Jungian group.  
We (John David and I) entered their group process during one of their breaks, while all the dancer-participants were resting after an exhausting exercise. After John David had a few words with Mary Whitehouse explaining his idea, I was invited to sing and began with one of my favorite Russian folk songs. A few of the dancers began to move, which I didn't notice. Then Josie came over to me and whispered, "Eugene, you are singing structured songs, which some of our people are being moved by, but here we deal with spontaneous, unstructured movement. Can you not sing something spontaneous and unstructured?"    
"Well", I answered, "I've never done anything like that, but I'll give it a try." Looking around on the floor where I sat next to Josie and others, I noticed a few objects like bongo drums, bells, triangles, and drum sticks, etc. "I'd like all of you to join in with me if you feel like it. If you feel a sound come up in you, please let it out. Perhaps we can make a medley out of it or something."  And so we began an adventure together that turned into the most wonderful, heavenly experience I had ever had! 
As I began to sing whatever came up in me and making accompanying sounds on and with the objects I'd noticed previously, others began to move and sing a note or two. I took those few sounds and added a new harmony to them as they continued.  Soon everyone was up and moving, singing and making other sounds. For what seemed like several hours as I sat singing, beating the bongos, ringing the bells, beating the floor in concert with the dancers' beautiful movements, we simply went to heaven and stayed there until we eventually, gently floated back down to the floor while exclaiming surprise and celebrating that mind-blowing event.   
It was then that one of the dancers, a large shapely blond, came over to me and asked where I was sleeping that night.  And I stepped over a taboo boundary, which changed me forever.   
Years later, while reflecting on that transforming event, I recalled a dream I'd had in Salt Lake City the previous month [on the Autumnal Equinox (September 21, 1965)], while I was the overnight guest of my former Mormon mission president. I've titled it "The Recrystallization of the Church". In the dream I kiss a large blond woman on the cheek while my wife and friends watch with knowing and approving smiles from a short distance away and say, "This is to celebrate the beginning of the recrystallization of the Church". I could not help thinking/believing that this same inner blond reappeared to me last summer, this time with a long blond braid, whom I called "Hippie Woman" in an interview with you on the Indigo in Bimini in August. 
With love and gratitude,


Sunday, November 11, 2018

Playing chess with youngest grandson.

Originally Posted: 2 October 2018
Updated: 25 Nov 18

Grandpa plays chess with grandson
2 Oct 18. Looking forward to teaching my youngest grandson a game I used to be passionate about more than 65 years ago. None of his older cousins now in their 30s and 40s has managed to beat this old grandpa yet. But I suspect it won't take long before this one will be teaching him (me)!

7 Oct 18. I am waiting for the first game online later this evening. We don't yet know who will make first move, but his dad will have his son choose which piece, black or white, which he will hold in his hands behind his back. If the hand chosen is holding white, grandson will start.

The setup in Los Alamos, NM (Grandpa's board)
Later (same day). Grandson chose white and we began communicating moves over the telephone, each of us living in a different state. (Am deliberately not using his name, place or age at present) This preliminary game turned out to be a good practice run. After several days of back and forth text moves, the game broke down in confusion over who moved what when. Our respective record keeping lists did not agree, so we decided to stop at move #23 on October 12, with no one yet winning. In the meantime we reviewed standard nomenclature, agreed to clearer language, and to play again another day, better equipped to understand each other. I was pleasantly surprised how much he knew and how quickly he learns.

October 12, 2018:  Game 0 (practice) at move #23

22 Oct 18. And then, on October 21, 2018, at move #21 in less than an hour, this grandson beat his grandpa during their very first real game! This was a total shock to me, but also a surprising delight! Who knows what the future will bring?!!

October 21, 2018: Game 1. Grandson's stunning defeat of his grandpa at move #21!!

Grandpa evens score
10 Nov 18. Game 2.
It took a month to arrange the next game in which Grandpa (me) would play white. During the month, grandson's parents suggested the best time for him to play on a regular basis would be early Saturday afternoons. That's how this second game was arranged, which was completed via telephone in one hour and 23 moves

It was not without lessons learned, especially by Grandpa, who had trouble keeping correct track of recording a few moves versus actually moving the pieces accordingly. At move #25, for example, he lost a rook to grandson, having failed to correctly move grandson's piece at the time grandson announced it. It took us a few minutes to review the written moves, which were all correct, but which Grandpa hadn't followed up by moving grandson's piece to the announced spot. This very much surprised Grandpa and he couldn't very well ask to redo the move (not allowed in serious chess). He had to eat crow and lose the piece. Fortunately for Grandpa, he was able to limp along enough to out maneuver grandson for an eventual win. 

Below is a photo of the final position at move #23 in Game 2. 
End of Game 2 from Grandpa's view
Lesson learned for G'pa in Game 2: "Move first, then record!" 

18 Nov 18. Game 3.
End of Game 3 from G'pa view
G'pa was more careful this time and won the game in an hour at move #24, when grandson [GS] resigned. This was a good lesson for GS, who felt devastated at this loss. With the help of his observing father, GS learned he could resign without suffering a humiliating checkmate when losing became inevitable. It was a lesson in gracefully accepting defeat. This is an attitude that all good chess players must learn.

25 Nov 18. Game 4.
End of game 4 from G'Pa view
G'Pa won game 4, but we had more fun this time. It took GS's dad and me to work out a more stable FaceTime audio connection to allow us all to communicate better. Also, this time I softened the rules for GS during these early games, so that we could talk about GS moves that he might want to take back. You can see on the record sheet that moves 10, 11 and 12 needed "readjustment".

Friday, November 2, 2018

Posted: 2 November 2018

As serendipity would have it, at 2:41 PM today (11/2/18), I received a news release describing the best long-term scenario I can imagine for our beleaguered USA, now in a constitutional crisis. Please read and let's discuss it! See PRG.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Kathy before she became Katya, circa 1958

Posted: 7 October 2018

Kathy Anne Kregg, circa 1958

A few weeks ago, in process of gathering personal papers to send to the University of Utah archives (at their invitation) before moving to Sweden, I came across this charming picture of my oldest child (and only daughter), taken by my dad in 1958 at his Nick Kregg photographic studio in San Clemente, California. This must have been just before her mother and I (and her younger brother Nicky) moved to Berkeley later that summer for me to attend the University of California. The family would eventually change its name to my dad's original family ("familia") name in late 1961 in Salt Lake City, during my second year of grad school at the University of Utah. 

Kathy would soon become known as Katya Kovalenko.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Let's talk about NOW...

Posted: 30 August 2018
Updated: 2 Sep 18

Image may contain: text

This shared FB post came in this morning (Aug 30) from good friend Joe Dillard:
"A good rule of thumb: spend no more than 5% of your thinking and feeling in the past, in order to learn from it; spend no more than 5% of your thoughts and emotions in the future, setting your priorities, and spend at least a full 90% of your time in the here and how, with each breath, because that is where you live, where you are alive, and where you can make a difference."
When I saw Joe's post, I immediately thought of the most recent letter from my oldest son, which dwells on long ago (1975) in a way that saddens, disappoints and surprises me. That he copied his siblings (except his youngest brother and his mother), their spouses and their mothers felt Absolum-like. Especially how it contrasted to the greatest Fathers' Day card I ever got from him or anyone else just 3 years ago.

Regretfully, I acknowledge now in this space, that I was not in my children's lives when they were small, as they needed me to be. I most regret not being able to rescue son Ivan in 1976, when he was living with my brother and his wife in Colorado Springs in their military household and hating it. (Although I much appreciated my brother's help, I had told Ivan I'd come to get him if the situation became intolerable). 

But now is now! Ivan left us in 1996 to the family's great sorrow, but not before saying goodbye to me in a most meaningful, well-planned way, before I realized he would soon be gone. His death brought the family together for a wondrous week. During that miraculous time we were able to put our resentments, complaints and guilts aside, while we met in the harmony of true community. Nick exclaimed at the end of the week that Ivan's passing had succeeded bringing the family together. Indeed he did. In fact, he continues to visit some of us in our dreams. In my last one of him, he rescued me from a stuck and confusing situation!

All my children have long ago grown up, four of which have their own families, four of which have become grandparents many times over. 

These days I am exploring a new kind of community that is only now coming into its own, which refers to itself in terms of "Exoconsciousness". I will be saying more about this in future posts and hope to share these experiences with those of my family who are willing to join me.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

RPK Phase 2 Experiment Protocol DRAFT 3

Posted: 2 August 2018
 Dear RPK Phase 2 potential influencers, 

Below is DRAFT 3 for our up-coming experiment. Since most main line scientists are skeptical of paranormal phenomena, I have given it to several world class skeptical physicists here, who are associated with the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) with this question: 

Assuming positive results from this protocol, will it constitute irrefutable evidence that the phenomenon of remote psychokinesis (telekinesis) is real? If not, why not?

Once I get their feedback, I will finalize the protocol and launch our experiment. I will contact each of you personally with which time slot, A, B, C, D or E you are asked to fill. This will include a GPS coordinates location of the device and a date in your personal time zone. Results will be reported in terms of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time).

Wednesday, August 1, 2018


Posted: 1 August 2018
Updated: 3 Aug 18

Forest Setting for Bell Jar Experiment (1972)

Been thinking about the back story of the RPK Experiment. 

Here is link to an essay titled "The concept of Mass", written in early 1972, during the time I was literally living in the forest of Southern Oregon and in process of building a second version of the experiment as I envisioned it back then. (My first version was built at General Atomic, when I was a nuclear materials research scientist in summer 1965. My naive excitement over developing this experiment got me into a lot of hot water at GA! See here for the event that evoked that excitement.) 

This was before I had the idea of two hanging objects, rather than just one. Back then I thought I had to consider screening all possible external unintended physical influences, including electro-magnetic and gravitational forces, from influencing a singular hanging object. Thus, the material of the object within the bell jar had to be non-magnetic, so I chose a quartz object hanging on a quartz spring attached to the inner top of the bell jar. The bell jar sat upon a seismic base (a large concrete post sunk into the ground) to minimize external ground-shaking vibrations, which was to be enclosed within a Faraday cage to block most external electro-magnetic radiations. If I had had the means (which I didn't) to pull a vacuum on the bell jar, I would have done that, too. 

In any case, I was not yet sure what kind of effect I was expecting other than simply getting the object move in a noticeable way. My above mentioned essay gave me a hint: what influence other than "force" could influence the object. Love?? That seemed too far out then and I couldn't imagine how to proceed in that direction regarding things physical.

Little did I know that my preoccupation with the concept of mass was heading towards what we are now considering in the Exoconsciousness movement, i.e., the nature of consciousness

It seems we are now on a path of convergence! 

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Remembering Ivan

Posted: 26 July 2018
Ivan on my office wall
(fused glass frame made by his older brother Jim)

This date was Ivan's favorite. He would have been 57 today. In the photo he was in his early 30s.

You were not yet 3 when your grandpa left us, my son. I presume you and he are now together with our family behind veiled scenes. Glad to feel the presence of you both, which will never be forgotten.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Recalling "one day..." 53 years ago

Posted: 25 July 2018
Updated: 2 Oct 18

It was 53 years ago today, not long after midnight that I awoke on fire with a Presence commanding me to write. I dared not refuse. What came out of me that intense morning--a response to an earnest prayer the previous evening--changed my life forever. 

Just one week earlier back then, I'd been instructed by a gentle, quiet voice that something like this would happen "one day"... Back then, in a struggle to accept the message of this inner voice, I thought "one day" meant "someday".  It has taken decades for me to comprehend the vast difference between one day and somedayThose closest to me back then thought I'd gone mad. Maybe I had. Thirteen years later, on June 8, 1978, I got a surprising confirmation of the difference.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Fr. john's Book signing

Posted: 24 July 2018
Updated: 26 Jul 18

Fr. John Hennies is the man who originally inspired this (Orthodox Odyssey) blog, begun in 2008. We met in early 2007, when I began to explore the Russian Orthodox tradition of my Ukraine-born father after he expressed interest in the Mormon tradition of my mother, in which I was born and reared.

I want to introduce readers to his new book "An Examined Life", which will bless anyone who reads seriously.

Fr. John signing a book while his Matushka (wife) looks on
Fr. John has come to Los Alamos, from where he now lives in retirement in South Dakota, to perform a marriage for one of his former parishioners. The current local Orthodox priest thought this would be a good opportunity for Fr. John to share his new book with the community.

Front cover
 I can't say enough good about this caring, fun-loving, serious and devoted man. He and I became firm friends during several  years of weekly meetings where we shared the truths of our respective lives and stories. During our conversations he earned a "doctorate" in Mormonism, whereas I could only muster a 'bachelors' in Russian Orthodoxy, when I was chrismated by him in November 2008 as Arseny-Pavel Kovalenko. 

Back cover
One glance at the back cover will give you a taste of his humor.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

RPK Phase 2 Protocol, Draft 2

Posted: 19 July 2018
Updated: 2 Aug 18

Check out the RPK Experiment, Phase 2 (Yes, some think it is weird!)


RPK Phase 2 Protocol, Draft2

This protocol is offered to talented potential influencers who have volunteered to participate in this on-going experiment. Results will be posted here. 

2 Aug 18. Draft 2 has been deleted since I've updated it with DRAFT 3.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

RPK Phase 2 protocol changes

Posted: 1 July 2018

My protocol idea for RPK Phase 2 has changed since my last post on May 20. This is a consequence of several subsequent conversations and text messages from potential Phase 2 influencers, which now number about 7. Boy! Do I have a lot to learn!!

My most recent conversation was with Dennis, Caroline Cory's primary technical team member. I experienced many goose bump rushes as we talked. It felt like I was talking to a cosmic brother, even though I'm now feeling a bit like a Neanderthal. Nevertheless, I feel motivated and encouraged to continue the direction of this Phase 2 initiative.

As a professionally trained materials scientist, my personal focus continues to be on the "concept of mass", as modern physics refers to it. That is because I have been curious about matter, per se. What is it? Is it a thing? Does it have consciousness? "No!", I say. "Mass" in physics terms is an IDEA--a concept. As mentioned earlier, Caroline's focus is on the "nature of consciousness". In talking to Dennis about this distinction, it became apparent that these two different viewpoints are converging as we proceed with Phase 2.

To be continued with a new variation of the protocol, which will reflect my recent communications with the current group of potential influencers.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

RPK Experiment, Phase 2: New Life!

Posted: 20 May 2018
RPK Icon
I thought I'd put this experiment away when I took it down earlier this month and sent the apparatus to the special collection archives at the University of Utah library. 

But then it took on new life. See here for update.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Where [Spiritual] Discoveries Are Made!

Posted: 11 April 2018
Updated: 15Apr18

What better place than the birthplace of THE BOMB for wounded, traumatized warriors, who have risked their lives for their country, to lead the way in exploring "Where Spiritual Discoveries Are Made" for themselves, each other and their country?

Stone moniker looking east 
in Los Alamos on Hwy 502

Los Alamos VFW Post 8844 will host Phase 2 (Tip of the Spear) Pilot Dream Workshop this coming Saturday, 14 April, 2018 at the Post back room from 10:00 to Noon. All local VFW vets with PTSD nightmares are welcome. None need disclose dream contents unless they feel safe. We have learned in Phase 1 of this pilot initiative that participants can experience deep healing "Aha!" insights in the company of trusted comrades.  

15 April 2018.  The day after.
Whiteboard at VFW Post 8844 back room
Ahem... I got only this far in drawing the standard "CREEI scan" chart layout for the workshop beforehand, before I ran out of energy to complete it. I was hoping one of the participants would help me complete it before everybody else arrived. You see that it is blank!

But no one came, except for Victor, the Post Chaplain, who had successfully completed Phase One of this pilot project and who knew the value and potential of the program. So, we talked privately for the scheduled two hours, which made it by no means a waste of time!

Nevertheless, we had to reconsider the reasons for the no show of everyone, despite multiple email reminders. We have many factors to consider before scheduling the next workshop.

Later in the evening of the workshop, I received a FB apology from the one VFW veteran I'd most hoped would attend the workshop, since I had felt his unique experience with PTSD nightmares would give us better insight in continuing this pilot program. He wrote:
Eugene...I didn't show up because I was in the middle of medication adjustment and a building migraine apologies.
More later.....

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Open Letter to Vladimir Putin on Russian Easter

Posted: 8 April 2018
Updated: 19Apr18

“Пасха” 2018
Los Alamos

Dear Vladimir Vladimirovich,

Today is Russian Easter. I have been thinking about an open letter to you since you first appeared in my dreams on 23 April two years ago, which was posted on Facebook that morning. [See:] In mind, as I write this letter, is a passage from Pasternak’s great, but repressed Nobel Prize winning novel about Him, whom “Пасха” is all about. Pasternak’s philosophical character, Nikolai Nikolaievich, pens something near scriptural to me:

“[The] ancient world ended with Rome…a flea market of borrowed gods and conquered peoples…and all wretched.

“And then, into this tasteless heap of gold and marble, He came, light and clothed in an aura, emphatically human, deliberately provincial, Galilean, and at that moment gods and nations ceased to be and man came into being—man the carpenter, man the plowman, man the shepherd with his flock of sheep at sunset, man who does not sound in the least proud, man thankfully celebrated in all the cradle songs of mothers and in all the picture galleries the world over.”


“…If the beast who sleeps in man could be held down by threats—any kind of threat, whether of jail or of retribution after death—then the highest emblem of humanity would be the lion tamer in the circus with his whip, not the prophet who sacrificed himself. But don’t you see, this is just the point--what has for centuries raised man above the beast is not the cudgel but an inner music: the irresistible power of unarmed truth, the powerful attraction of its example…”

This morning I awoke from a dream, having just played chess with a master, who has surprised me by capturing my rook with his pawn at h1. In waking, I am assessing whether to continue or resign. 

[Note: since this is an open letter, other readers should understand that my inner chess-master character has exhibited a powerful defense by gently showing how easily he took my rook with a lowly pawn and, of course, could turn it into a queen to demonstrate an overwhelming advantage without even having to announce checkmate! It is comforting to me to know that my inner world has such a clever, powerful chess-playing partner that I can count on if I should get tangled up with more powerful chess-savvy opponents.

In checking my FB record to review the above-mentioned 23 April dream and the FB post of it two years ago, I discovered that it had been deleted! All posts before and after that date are still there, but not that one. I doubt that FB administrators would have deleted it without notifying me first. This gives me pause in continuing my intent to publish this letter, while always wondering about the nature of inner versus outer reality. One of my insightful friends, author of Nobel-Prize-worthy Quantum Mind: The Edge between Physics and Psychology, reminds me that “Inner work is world work.” And so, I continue.

In reflecting on inner conversations with you since your appearance in my April 23, 2016 dream, Vladimir Vladimirovich, I have wondered what reports your people have made to you about me that you referred to in the dream. Is it that over my entire adult life, from age 19 when I joined the US Army just before Stalin died in 1953 until now, I have been preoccupied with searching for and getting to know my Ukraine-born father’s “Rodina” (the only important Russian word I knew as a boy)? 

This was because my father had been conscripted at age 14 in 1917, along with his entire high school class, into the Russian White Army to fight the Bolsheviks in the Russian Revolution-civil war. After the war he became a war refugee, then a merchant marine before jumping ship in Boston and becoming an illegal alien for two decades before winning American citizenship during WW2.  Dad told me once in my boyhood that he had become a mounted partisan during the Russian civil war in a group, which had the assignment they humorously referred to as “Chasing after Махно”, whom they could never catch. Imagine my surprise to discover, long after my dad’s death in 1964, that the historical Makhno had been immortalized in Pasternak’s novel as his character “Strelnikov”!

Or could it be that your reports contained reference to my personal clandestine assignment to Project Stopwatch-Gold in Berlin, where I began to develop a strange talent, uniquely valued by American authorities, but which could not be explained by our most skilled linguists in London or Washington despite minutely scouring the tape recordings of your people, but finding no reference on the tapes to the information I had been able to provide? I have often wondered over the years since if I had been unwittingly and unconsciously reverse programmed by your people with that useful-to-my people stuff, which I did not actually understand myself—but they did. 

This suspicion became enhanced in my mind soon after my father’s death when I suddenly became aware of an inexplicable "psi-warfare" offensive being developed by your people, initiated by your legendary scientist L. L. Vasiliev in Leningrad in the 1920s and beyond, described in his 1957 publication “Experiments in Mental Suggestion”. As American scientist Russell Targ has written in his recent republication of Vasiliev’s book:
     Professor L. L. Vasiliev was a pioneering consciousness researcher in the heart of Stalinist Russia. His investigations convincingly demonstrated that the thoughts of one person can directly affect the physiology and behavior of a distant person.

       Most famously, he showed that he personally could hypnotize and put to sleep hypnotic subjects that were inside electrically and acoustically shielded rooms, or even thousands of miles away.

       This interest in distant behavior modification has been, and is, the hallmark of Soviet parapsychological research right up to the present time.

My interest at that time became: how does one protect against such a manipulative offensive? I believe I have learned how to do this in recent years, which is why I am emboldened to write this letter.

Continuing my wondering about the reports you mentioned in my 23 Apr 2016 dream, could it be that they included my work with the Northwest-Soviet Liaison Corporation in 1973-74 and my September letter to the Ministry of Foreign Trade in Moscow? [See:]. 

Or, my subsequent poem a week later on the eve of leaving Moscow after my first visit? [See:]. 

Or, could it be my later poems “Rodina” (1987) to prepare for a first visit to Ukraine and “Liahonagrad” (1988), after visiting Kiev for the first time and singing on Shevchenko’s grave in Kanev? [Rodina. We of your exiled sons, come seeking roots beyond our Celtic ones and older, silent fears. Like Viking guests with Slavic souls, we seek now whole new worlds to heal our blindness. We would learn of you and learn new songs.]

Or, what about this naive 1988 draft “novel” first chapter called “Task Force” about more relevant terrorist issues of concern to both our countries? [See:]. Who knows what could have happened, had our leaders here in America been open to this initiative at the time?

Or, could it have been the report from two young Russian Orthodox women who visited us in Long Beach on Russian Easter in 1989? [See:]

Or, a symposium paper I wrote in 1989, called “Mormon Mission to Moscow”? [See: 

Vladimir Vladimirovich, this letter is far too long and you are likely too busy to have read much of it, should it ever capture your attention. But I have a few last things to say about recent developments between our two countries before signing off. I am an old man now with not much time left on this planet.

As I have seen some of your outer behavior through the distorted lenses of our respective news agencies, I have noticed how moved you became on several occasions when hearing your national anthem played at certain international events. This reflects your heart’s concern to me, which I honor.

I have wondered more than once, after the fall of the Soviet Union, how sincere you were when you claimed membership in the Russian Orthodox Church tradition. Given your KGB background, was it more than opportunism or cynicism that led to that choice? 

Forgive my impertinence for such a question. 

I believe you are in a position, which is far greater than our current American president, to set an example that could bless our two countries, as well as all others on this planet. In such a position, I’m confident that you and your people are not a little amused at how easy it is to penetrate our American defenses, whether military, psychological, cyber technological or parapsychological. 

But when you use criminal or manipulative means to achieve dominance in whatever arena you are focused on, it can only lead to grief in the long run. It needn’t be this way if by some wonderful, truly Christ-centered way you could apply a partnering attitude instead. I think of the examples of the two Russian Orthodox priests, Father Arseny and Pavel Florensky, whose reported Christ-like behavior in the Soviet gulags, despite their horrific suffering, converted me to Orthodoxy. 

Hence, my chrismated name is Arseny-Pavel. Since our current US president (to say nothing of many other leaders) is easily manipulated, as you have obviously discovered over many years, he is not likely ever to notice, let alone acknowledge, this vulnerable self-aspect. I have little, if any, hope that he and his core constituents can ever be approached as I am approaching you now. In this vein am thinking about St. Pavel Florensky’s definition of “prelest” in his classic 1922 book “Iconostasis”. See:

After I was trained to be a Russian language interrogator by the Army Language School as a young soldier during the Cold War, I was privy to listening in to direct communications between the Red Army High Command in Berlin and Moscow. I was also privy to conversations by the KGB, which I learned years later was aware of the operation I served in from its beginning. [See: YouTube British video “Spies Beneath Berlin”]. I learned that these two Soviet organizations did not trust each other and had little interaction. Furthermore, I noticed that the behavioral contrast between them, while listening in on those tapped telephone lines, was clear and obvious. Whereas the Red Army officers, including Marshal Grechko at the top, often seemed crude and questionable and always identified themselves, the KGB impressed me greatly by their intelligence and subtle precision. Nor did they ever identify themselves. 

To my mind, it was no wonder that when Mikhail Gorbachev came to power out of his training in the KGB, having a more accurate perspective of international realities. Because of this background and a Christian perspective, he was able to craft a new terminology such as “glasnost” and “perestroika” for your people that began a transforming process, which moved the USSR’s despotism in a more humane and democratic direction. It is too bad that Mikhail Sergeevich was unable to contain unintended forces in your country that took over and collapsed the system. It is also too bad that our country’s leaders were not wise enough to understand these forces well enough to allow them to develop the kind of policies that would make “partnering” rather than “dominating” a superior way of contributing to world stability and prosperity.

I pray that your leadership and those who serve your country in these perilous times will lead in the direction of healthy partnering with my country and others, rather than a continuous contest between dominating intentions.


Eugene N. Kovalenko, Ph.D.
Los Alamos, NM 87544

Friday, January 5, 2018

First NNK Family Round Table

Posted: 5 January 2018
Updated:  9 Jan 18

The table

My Dad
NNK self portrait circa age 60
(Nicholas Kovalenko, aka Nick Kregg, 
aka  Nikolai N. Krijanowski, 
aka Nikolai Nikolaevich Kovalenko)

My first recollection of an NNK family round table occurred in spring 1965. It was actually in a dream where I sat with my late father (NNK) and my mother, who was still alive. Dad had died the previous year on May 14, 1964, which was only a day before his 61st birthday and just a month before I took my doctorate at the University of Utah. I was very happy to see Dad in this intimate inner family setting.

I should say here that near the end of Dad's life the previous year ('64), I was in a deep post-doctoral depression between January 2 and May 14, 1964. (Miraculously, I had successfully defended my doctoral dissertation in February that year. See here for that story. ) During that terrible time, Dad invited me on a sentimental journey to visit the places in Phoenix where I grew up, out of his concern for me and to help comfort me during a confusing time. This week-long or so period was the only time I'd remembered spending such an extended private time with him. Then, only a few weeks later--it was the night before I learned of his death--I suddenly and surprisingly snapped out that 4-1/2 month long terrible depression.  I was surprised not to mourn his death, but felt strongly that my spiritual work had just begun, immediately remembering a powerful spiritual experience with him while on a visit to his California home the previous year (June 1963), just before finishing graduate school at the University of Utah.

This 1965 dream a year later was therefore an exciting surprise, since Dad had never before (in real life) been much interested in my activities other than I was making him proud by my academic achievements. Rather, he had been more interested in my interest in his life, since at his death we had been focusing for the past many months (especially before the depression) on getting his autobiography recorded, beginning with his early life as a boy soldier in the White Army during the Russian Revolution-civil war of 1917-20. Now, almost a year later, and by the time of this dream, I had become interested in several new and esoteric subjects, including other religions, parapsychology and flying saucers. 

In my dream, as I begin to reveal my delight in these new things to Dad's obvious interest, my dream-mother interrupts, frowning with disapproval. I am shocked that she would intrude on this new conversation with my dad (heavenly father?) and awake silent, but furious. I did not know what to make of this dream at the time, other than worry about its meaning.

I was to learn subsequently that this dream signaled the beginning of my disaffection from my TBM [True Blue Mormon] earthly mother and from the Mormon Church. This was because, when I shared this dream with my real life mother the next day, she behaved very much like my dream character of her! Which is to say, she dismissed my dream as nonsense.

It was not nonsense. 

But I had to learn the cause of my fury (as well as the depression) and develop ways to wake up and transform that energy into something positive, including compassion, forgiveness and love.