Bernard's Passing Away

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Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Leila »

Bernard Poolman passed away in the early hours of Sunday morning, 11 August 2013 (SA time). His heart stopped beating.

The post that follows was written by Bernard’s daughter, Cerise Poolman – all of the members of Desteni living on the Farm stand by these words.

Bernard Poolman is known as many things:

A guru, a cult leader, an anarchist,

A communist, a socialist,

A freedom fighter, a freedom writer,

An activist, a practivist,

A visionary, a loon

All these labels mean nothing. To me, he was Bernard, my dad, the most honest and self sacrificing person I have ever known. Now he is dead, and the world is poorer for it.

He may have had radical ideas, but isn’t that exactly what we need? We don’t seem to have come very far with “in the box” ideas. Look around, the Earth is being poisoned, people live in poverty, our children are crazy murderers, our religious leaders cannot be trusted with young children, our political leaders cannot be trusted with anything and our economists are simply making things up as they go along. We all buy into the propaganda that makes the world seem beautiful “just the way it is” – Bernard did not.

Does that make him crazy by definition? Yes, if the definition of insanity is something that is apart from the norm. He questioned the inequality in the world and challenged us for not questioning it too – maybe this is why so many people hate him – they do not want to see themselves as ignorant, as idle bystanders watching atrocities and genocide unfold before their very eyes. It is easier seeing ourselves the way people are portrayed in the media, as innocent, as deserving.

Bernard was one man who made a difference in the lives of many – there are few people who can claim the same for themselves. There are those who point fingers and use nasty words to try and twist the message that Bernard was repeating over and over – what does this make them, I wonder? The message that Bernard kept saying was that of Jesus: Love thy neighbour as thyself, do unto another as you would like to be done unto you. What does this make of the naysayers, the cult preachers, the vigilant protectors of “human rights and liberties” – that they call this message, and its sender “evil”?

Many accused him of being a cult leader, even though he said time and again: “I am not a leader, I am just a man, I am your equal and you are mine.” He was accused of being evil for recognising that our world, our society, our very selves are tainted – and that we have deliberately continued on as if we are angels. He was accused of brainwashing, for questioning the things we so blindly accept as being “Normal” and “acceptable” – such as poverty, crime, exploitation, rape, murder, unhappy marriages, psychological disorders, economic theories, wars, the creation of weapons, the minimum wage being far from sufficient to survive on.

You may ask “what now?” to us loony cultists trying to make the world a better place. My answer: we continue. We have laid down a good, strong foundation of principles and assistive tools to support ourselves with. Bernard contributed many ideas which we then developed into tools, such as DIP Pro and DIP Lite – but each of us has walked our own process – and we did not do it for him, we did it for ourselves and for all life on Earth. They say you can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink – Bernard showed us where the water is, but each of us made our own choice to stand and live the principles of Desteni, Equal Money, Living Income Guaranteed etc.

We must now prove to the world that Bernard was no “guru” – that we are entirely capable of standing without him, and growing ourselves and the group.

http://creationsjourneytolife.blogspot. ... devil.html

Please feel free to use this thread to share anything you may want to express in relation to Bernard's Passing Away

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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by ReginaldDiepenhorst » ... -died.html

Today I received the saddening news that Bernard Poolman passed away.

First I was shocked "Is this for real". And I re-read the e-mail. I went to the forum to see whether someone has responded already to this message. I was in a semi-state of disbelief and realizing that things will not ever be the same again.

When I saw Bernard's video's on the internet, I directly 'saw' myself. The way he talked, the way he presented stuff, his tonality. Bernard was me as what I was to become in so many years.

Bernard Poolman was somebody, just as me, he and I sought solutions for the problems that existed in this world. No topic was too controversial. All and everything had to be investigated, and that was what he did. He helped me tremendously by sharing his stories, his video's were always inspirational. Some were even really confronting, knowing that I could not turn a blind eye to things. To stop the madness, we had to investigate everything and present a solution.

Thanks to Bernard, I was able to 'live' my 'own' life. Bernard was here, so I could focus on getting my own shit straightened out. I didn't need to to and become Bernard, he already walked this entire process and shared his fuck-ups, realizations, so that I, was able to get down with my own process. But in a way I did had to become like Bernard.

If you know B, B has dedicated and sacrificed his life to benefit all of humanity, the animals, nature, as he understood that, the greater is much more important than one individual, and I was about the walk the very same as B.

It's been since 2007/2008 that I have been with Desteni and ever since walked according to the principles which would create a world that's best for all, and due to B. I began this process in a new understanding, there is room for me too in this world.

I have cried on and off today for the loss I experienced by B. not being amongst us in a physical body. I had never gotten the opportunity to visit the Desteni farm, due to time issues, as my time had to be addressed accordingly. Bills had to be paid. Now I won't be able to talk to B. in person, or to experience myself in the presence of 'Myself', to laugh with myself, the see the example of who and what I would've become if I dared to to take the steps he took. And I have never been able to voice to him in person the gratitude I lived for him being here.

There was no necessity for me, since that first video, for me to live this life of hardship anymore, as I would've done everything to get the solutions for the world problems here in great clarity. Bernard gave me that chance to develop myself differently, as there was no need anymore for that particular expression.

So now with Bernard Poolman gone, I have to re-evaluate my stance. What was it in B. that I saw and did not grant/give myself. What did he made me see, even if what I saw in him already, was me?

B. was radical in a way, provocative, confronting, yet gentle, humble, fearless. B. was a leader, as he was someone who took charge of the situation and took responsibility to sort shit out. Even though B. was not OUR leader, as he said: "I am not a leader, I am just a man, I am your equal and you are mine".

Desteni haters, and Desteni trolls have often tried to 'proof' the contrary. And to them even this little piece will be contradictory in itself: "You say B. was a leader, yet he was not your leader?" Correct. As a leader as it is lived in this world, is someone who has followers, and will do and say as he pleases. B. was a leader in the sense that, he lead his life and through leading his life, he has shown by example what it is what we could make of ourselves, and he showed this as he understood what was necessary for this existence to live in harmony with each point in existence. So he was an example to many of us, however not never a leader as portrait as the paranoia-creators as Desteni haters and trolls would want you to believe.
Now with B. being gone, and their issues about B. wanting world domination, wanting to be rich, or being an egotistical dictator will make no sense, and these people will be exposed for who they are. Abusers, Fearful creatures, people who prey on other people their paranoia. As we as Destonians will walk regardless who will die amongst our midst. B. was one of us, like every Destonian and everyone who is willing to create a world that is best for all is one of us. Though with B. his death he even gifted us this very unforeseen point by many. The haters will be exposed, and will create a platform for all people who might even consider their previous fears and see these haters as freedom fighters, to actually see how gullible they were and that is now time to stand and walk with people who are real.

Thank you Bernard for all what you have done for us. Thank you for the gifts you have given us. Thank you for Existing. Thanks for being part of us all now and being an example.

I am grateful for knowing you, learning from you, speaking with you, and all the support you (personally) gave me in chats, on the forum, and through your countless video's. You are truly an example. And for that I will be eternally grateful.
Last edited by ReginaldDiepenhorst on 12 Aug 2013, 14:33, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Anna » ... ord-alive/

When people die, we write R.I.P on their gravestones. But the World will not Rest in Peace and nor will we until we have Gathered the Pieces of ourselves and brought all of ourselves back together again as Life. This is what I learned from Bernard.

The first time I heard Bernard speak in the end of 2008, it was through a video on You Tube. I heard this distinct voice with a clear accent that I could not place and immediately I experienced a reaction within myself, almost like my insides was shaking. One of the first things I noticed was how Bernard would speak all around a point in a way I had never heard before – embracing all aspects of a point and do so while swearing! It was one of the most liberating experiences I had ever experienced. Here was a man who spoke the truth of what was going on in the world, straight up, no bullshit, no romantic words of pep talk, but instead self-honest in-your-face support. I felt like I had landed for the first time in my entire life in a spot where everything finally made sense. But not in a pretty way – in a pretty fucked up way. There was no distance anymore with an idea of a world outside of this one or a meaning to life besides what is already here in and as this messed up reality. What is here is what is here – and now there was someone able to explain every single question I had ever had. It was scary and amazing and saddening all at once. I started feeling a deep love and appreciation for Bernard while a part of me wanted to shut his voice out and turn of the video. I literally felt sick from facing myself for the first time through meeting myself in Bernard’s words. I could not hide from this man. This man refused to hide. I had never met or seen or heard of anyone ever being like Bernard was and it was as if my entire life was reset and I had to start over from scratch. Now – this is not because Bernard was doing something to me – it was clearly myself I faced in Bernard’s words – words that resonated to the very core of my being –, which I knew without any doubt or lingering that was true. The best way to explain my experience was that until then I had felt like I was very small in a big world and after finding Desteni and Bernard, I experienced the world as being very small and suddenly it was my inner world that seemed so infinitely big. This I learned, is the virtual world we’ve created through and within our minds – it isn’t real. So I learned about the Mind and how we have created ourselves in separation from and abdication of ourselves through, within and as the mind.

I lived together with Bernard on the Desteni farm for nearly a year. I have visited the farm three times. When I initially came to the farm I was extensively afraid of meeting Bernard. At that stage I was still coming from a spiritual perspective and believed in the renouncement of material belongings, so when I came to the farm and saw all the food, the dogs, the liters of coffee being drunk every day, the mess and all the people, I was absolutely astounded. There were literally dogs everywhere and in the middle of it all was Bernard, a completely ordinary and extraordinary man, talking, watching movies, playing virtual slot machines and pushing everyone’s buttons to the max.

Whenever Bernard came into the room, I would feel so nervous because I knew that he would see through my bullshit, that he could see all sides of me, even the ones I was hiding from myself. Sometimes Bernard would push my buttons to provoke a reaction and only later would I realize what had happened – and gratefully laugh at my own sillyness and Bernard’s ability to call bullshit on me. Sometimes he would not speak at all. Other times he would simply be, hang out, stand by the grill or do the laundry. Yes – that is right, Bernard did the laundry! He did everyone’s dirty laundry, clean and fresh and folded for your pleasure.

At some point I realized that Bernard would be whatever I required to be reflected – so if I hated myself, he would reflect that back to me. I started seeing Bernard as a black hole that can contain anything and everything at once and that will become whatever you are so that you can face yourself. And I understood that only when I would stand equal to Bernard – as him, with him, would I see the real Bernard. The Bernard that is also simply a man – a man who has walked a process. A process that he pushed himself to walk, that he walked all alone and that he now shares with all of us, as we share our processes with each other as well. What is so fascinating is within how we say at Desteni that everything is in reverse – because Bernard is properly one of the most prominent examples of that. Bernard was loud, scary, and rude or whatever you’d perceive him to be – and at the same time, he was the manifestation of love in the flesh. Real love – not mushy love. As such Bernard once said that; “love per se -is the act of life assisting the delusion to give up its illusion–that is in its very nature brutal — and not some fuzzy word that give some a place of superiority purely due to the genetic predisposition to have a higher intelligence” And that is exactly what I saw in Bernard as well – that is the living word of Bernard.

When Bernard would support me and share with me points about myself, I learned to Breathe and not resist the words and to simply be still inside myself and let the words resonate through my body. Ironically I have never been so calm or so stable in my entire life as when Bernard was giving me the brutal truth about myself and what I have accepted and allowed myself to exist within and as. Because Bernard’s words is absolute – they are embracing, direct and they come from a starting-point of equality and self-forgiveness, to accept nothing less from each of us than that that which is best for all life. Bernard is properly the only human being I have ever trusted fully and at the same time, Bernard would do, say and be whatever it took to wake you up from your state of inner self-delusion and deception. Bernard was always supporting me to realize myself, even if it meant supporting me in lying to myself or confirming me in my self-judgment.

For this is I am grateful, because within this Bernard has assisted me immensely in realizing what I was doing to myself, what I was accepting and allowing, without enforcing realizations upon me that I would then be indebted to Bernard through forever. There are many beings, including myself who’s had the tendency to follow Bernard as though he was a guru, a god or a father figure and I am sure that Bernard carefully made sure that any illusions of grandeur about him is removed so that the person can concentrate on themselves and not on worshiping Bernard.

Living with Bernard was interesting, but at the same time not as thrilling as one might think. From an entirely different perspective, it was the most thrilling experience of my life. Living with a being and watching a Being exist, who has no limits, no morals, no conscience, no fear, no feelings and no mind, gives ground for some pretty interesting experiences. For example: Bernard slept when he was tired and this means that there was no schedule or specific rhythm, because that is (obviously) something we’ve created within the constructs of this world according to the mind. So Bernard was up at all times of the day and night and in the beginning I did not even think that Bernard even slept at all. He always had at least 10 dogs around him. It is not something he told them to do. He wasn’t petting them like most people pet their animals. Sometimes he would provide support if the animal was having an experience of its own or is indicating a point as a side effect to the general process. Bernard would touch them though and they would all sleep on top of him When he went to the toilet they would wait outside. One time Bernard asked me why I think they follow him and he shared with me that it is because he was a point of stability for them. He was the physical manifested as solid, firm unconditional support. And that is what he has been to many of us.

A point I noticed about Bernard was that he would wait with eating until everyone else had eaten. He would make sure that everyone was okay. If an animal required medical care, he would immediately ensure it, even if it meant driving far away late at night. If someone, animal or human had expressed a specific desire for some food or beverage, Bernard would buy it for them. When there were children on the farm, Bernard did not treat them special or as inferior. He would look at their expression and their situation exactly as he would with any other being and see how he could assist. If someone, animal or human was acting in a way that is unacceptable, Bernard would make sure that they point was directly to self-correction. He would walk with the dogs in the morning sunlight and simply embrace the world in support and care and the humbleness that Bernard lived, is something I am not even able to describe within the capacity of my current vocabulary. Bernard stands one and equal with all life.

If I would complain about the load of work I had to do, Bernard would give me more work. Or if I placed special value in something or defined myself as more because of it, Bernard would point it out and tease me about it – this he did, not because he was evil – but because he understood that a practical, physical and tangible re-education is required, for each of us to stop living within and as self-interest in the delusion of the mind – of desires and fears and to start living here in common sense self-honesty. So when I got more work, I started realizing that I had created the idea of it being “too much” as a point of delusion. I realized that I had defined myself according to it or held onto it out of fear of losing it. I don’t know anyone else in the world, who’s able to support Beings like that – so brutal – so direct – so absolutely spot-on, every time.

One time when I was doing laundry, I dropped a piece of clothes out from the washing machine while I was emptying it. Bernard came by and he firmly informed me that what I was doing was spiteful against life, that I could not even have the care to make sure that this piece of clothes did not touch the floor. It was a shock to hear that such a small point – is how I saw it at the time – could indicate such a point of abuse and inequality. But I slowly but surely started realizing how I was in fact living as spitefulness, as disregard, in most of my actions.

Of all the things I learned from Bernard and while being on the farm, this was properly one of the most important. I learned that you cannot say you stand for something, if you do not live it in every moment of every breath to the fullest. Bernard would literally educate me, through assisting me to expand my understanding and awareness of my reality and through the example of those living together on the farm, who had already walked process for some time. It has actually only been recently that I have started realizing the difference this has made in my life and in how and as who I live. There are so many seemingly small points of practical physical living in and through which I have learned to be specific, diligent, caring and considering and I can see now, where I am living in an agreement, how important those points are. To understand that what you are doing when you let the water run for no apparent reason other than it being convenient or because you never considered doing it differently, is spiteful. To understand that living what is best for all is something that we can and must apply in every moment of living here, looking practically in common sense at our reality and applying ourselves according to what is – in fact – best for all life.

Through Bernard’s example, I have learned to care for and take care of animals. I have come to appreciate animals from an entirely different perspective. I have learned to appreciate self-discipline and structure. I have learned to get up in the morning immediately upon my first Breath. I have learned to support others as I have been supported. These things might sound small and insignificant, but when all these – and more – points are gathered, as all the breaths of a day – or a life time- it is clear that what we are doing is starting to create a world that is best for all. A world where each of us stand self-responsible, self-trusting and self-directed in equality.

My life has been forever changed because of Bernard Poolman. Because he dared to walk his process for himself, alone through fear, through losing everything, his family, his money, his sanity, until only he was left, self-forgiving and self-embracing in equality with and as all life – He did it without any instructions or manual, because when he walked his process, there was no group walking-with, which is what we have created for ourselves now, as Desteni, the I process and the constant stream of material, information and support we supply 24/7 online.

Many beings will be sad because Bernard has died – but his death is not about keeping a legacy alive, hell no – we’re not going to ‘honor his memory’. He would have said: “fuck that.” lol – Honoring Bernard is honoring ourselves as life – Honoring Bernard is sharing the Living Word as it has been shared with us and to stand in every moment of Breath here walking the process of establishing a world that is best for all. I will miss Bernard tremendously and I am eternally grateful to have met him. But even for those who haven’t met Bernard in person – it is not a loss. Because Bernard was never about the personal. He said: “You must become me as I am you, so that we can trust each other no matter where we are, no matter who we are.”

I have never loved anyone the way I loved Bernard. I have never respected anyone the way I respected Bernard. I have never trusted anyone the way I trusted Bernard. I have never been challenged or supported by anyone the way that Bernard challenged and supported me. Bernard showed me the potential of what is possible – of what I can become if I stand up within myself.

Bernard is that part of us that has dared to stand up for life – that has dared to not only say that “enough is enough” but to actually live it in every moment of every breath – no fear – no compromise. Bernard stands with and as all of us, as our own brutal self-honesty – the only remedy that will cure this world from the delusion that we’ve allowed ourselves to live and become. Bernard is the side of all of us that has taken the first step to birth ourselves as life – now it is up to each of us to take the next.

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Rebecca Dalmas
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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Rebecca Dalmas »

Last Friday I brought up a memory of feeling powerless, and I realized this as myself just crying because I felt powerless. And then I remembered. I have the tools. I am not powerless unless I allow and accept this. I am life.
This is Bernard for me, and every time I use the tools and stand as the principle, I am being " Bernard" I am being life. He is me, I am him, he is here as this - this gift of life to be in thought, word and deed, equal to and as life here. Every time I stand with these tools, Bernard/life is here.

The expression of Bernard as life as what he was, was this gift and every time we use it we are him, he is here as this gift, as this expression, thus nothing has been lost and all is gained. Life.

Thus, let him go, let the life that is him go and become another expression. Take the gift and lets get this done.

If I may speak for us all, how many of us can stand much more directive in joy, in ease, without anger, without frustration, without dis-ease? How many of us feel " lighter" and are more joyful? This is Bernard, this is life, this is the gift, thus Bernard is here as this as us.

I have never met Bernard in the flesh, but it dawned on me this morning that he is here as his words as his tools, as becoming absolutely focused here, equal and one, with and as the physical world, here.

If anything, this makes me want to cry tears of joy, in thanks because the tools are here to birth ourselves as life.

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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by JessicaArias »

I still can´t grasp it.
I went to bed with the desire of waking up and realising it was just a dream. I am really shocked.

I am sad and angry cause people like him goes this way and other people doing nothing stays and occupy a space that some being thay is willing to stand can take.

I didn´t knew Bernard in person but I really Respect him and I am grateful for being here and for having the opportunity to read and to hear all the tools he shared.

My condolences to Esteni, Cerise and Lj and Everyone Here!! a Big Hug for you!

Thank you all for Everything you are doing to Stand and to assist Life!!!!!

: )

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Gabriel Aceves
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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Gabriel Aceves »

This is something that I really didn´t expected, I mean, its sounds really so egoistical from my part to say "oh this was not supposed to happen because I had other plans in my mind and I wanted to get to know him and to meet him in person and things like that"

I am angry at myself because I am seeing all of this thoughts that I had in how I reacted to his words and most of the times I took them personally , but I can understand why he say them, he was, IS a real caring, loving being and a real living example for me, this is like loosing someone so closer to you, I don´t know, I mean, I have never cried for anyone in my entire life, but I mean, I am still able to see that this is truly egoistical from myself, because at the end this is still just the beginning of our journey and you know, its really like loosing that person who teach you to stand up and to walk LITERALLY, I guess that he was a father for all of us, and its time to learn how to walk in our two feet, because now I understand why he said what he said and I see that my reactions to his words was only my ego not wanting to see why he was doing what he was doing, even if that means that the people is going to react, he has shown us real love, what love actually means, to do what is best for all, even if they don´t understand it in the beginning they are going to understand it, and now I understand why he will always be so strict, like just THE BEST TEACHER IN THIS WORLD, he always pointed out that in this world there are millions upon millions of people dying each day, suffering each day, my tears are not going to alleviate that, and therefore the best way for me to really honor the words and teachings of Bernard will be to keep going, to keep working, writing and applying forgiveness until this is done, the words of Bernard remain with me, and to honor myself will mean to live and stand as those words as his teachings as what he wanted and showed me that IS REAL. A REAL SELF, A REAL LIVING EXAMPLE.

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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Ann » ... r-he-said/

sufferingAbout 6 years ago, through a youtube video I thought was a joke from some kids but at the same time made a hell of a lot of sense, I discovered the Desteni forums. I had a ton of questions and there were so many intresting things to read about the mind, thoughts, emotions, fears, life... I asked questions and often got assistance from Bernard but also other people such as Andrea, Sunette etc... From the first day my perception was that they were good people who wanted to stop abuse in this world, beginning with the most important part: themselves.

I soon started the journey to change myself as well, which was often hard because I had to confront myself with my fears and attachments, my ego. But the people of Desteni were always there to help out when I needed perspective.
After some time I went to visit the Desteni farm. I was kind of nervous to meet everyone, since I often get nervous in new situations and with new people. Can't quite know what to expect.

When I arrived at the farm I met everyone. Bernard decided to give us a tour around the farm, and he seemed very normal to me, gentle. Yet there was also something else, he was straight to the point and determined. When I was around him I sometimes felt nervous, part of that was because I was thinking about what he could say wrong about me, what 'bad things' are in my mind etc... basically I was judging myself hardcore and he intensified that somehow. So the day after, Bernard was walking around and saying something to me and I felt like crying. I normally don't easily cry infront of others but I couldn't hold it in. I said: 'I feel like I have to cry', and I started crying. I was sitting on a computer chair and Bernard kneeled next to me. He started to talk to me, and there is 1 thing that stuch with me:

'it is not because you are a slave that you have to suffer'

I immediatly knew what he meant. There had been things said that I still can't make sense off, but this one was 100% clear.

Our thoughts, our ego... all of the fears we have are programmed into ourselves. And what I had been doing for years was juding myself because of it. I was a slave to my thought, my fears, my ego and everything, and for years I had felt depressed partly because of that. Because I saw those things in my mind, I saw myself following it, and I judged myself hardcore which made me feel like shit on most days. But through Desteni I learned that thoughts are programmed, that I don't HAVE to follow my thoughts, that I can be my own self-direction, and that like he said: not have to make myself suffer because of how I am programmed. That I can stop this, and while doing so not judge myself because of my programming, but do something about it and be patient with myself but also push myself at times.
I was also way out of my comfort zone. At home I am mostly by myself, with my parents around and brother, but we are mostly buzy with our own stuff and there are not many conversations to deal with internal patterns. And at the farm there were lots of talks, often lead by Bernard since he didn't hold back.

Desteni are people that work on themselves to better themselves, to create a true change in this world as well. And Bernard is one of the main reasons why Desteni exists. And now Bernard is gone Desteni will keep on existing. As said in this blog ... -died.html:

"B. was radical in a way, provocative, confronting, yet gentle, humble, fearless. B. was a leader, as he was someone who took charge of the situation and took responsibility to sort shit out. Even though B. was not OUR leader, as he said: "I am not a leader, I am just a man, I am your equal and you are mine"

He wanted everyone of us to be our own leader, to take self-direction, to do whats necessary to be done. And I realize I sometimes need to push myself more, to do what has to be done, to not postpone. And he was the best example for that.

So I am grateful he has been on this Earth in my lifetime, that I got to meet him and all people involved. It changed my life a lot, and still does.

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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Darryl » ... e-big-man/
8/11/2013. The Big Man
Posted on 2013-Aug-11 by Darryl Thomas
That’s what I called Bernard. “The Big Man.” I liked to tell Andrea, “Can’t hang out with ya, hun. Gotta go into town with the Big Man.” It was due to the fact that when I first time I ever laid eyes on him I was surprised how large he looked. It was evening time, September 29, 2008. After being picked up at the airport I arrived in the darkness of night to the farm and strode through the front door of the main building. I had been invited to the farm by Bernard. I had only contacted him via email and chats on the Internet. On a whim, I decided to take him up on his offer. In an email to me he said, “You won’t want to leave.” I didn’t even know what the man looked like. It was strange that I was even on another continent placing my safety into the hands of a stranger.

Bald and stout, Bernard meets me inside the door. We embrace and then he takes me into the kitchen where he suggests that I would like some coffee. We exchange the polite, customary pleasantries. Bernard pulls out a cigarette and says, to no one in particular, “How long will Darryl continue to wait?” Bernard often asked questions that tended to freeze you in your tracks. I had a wonderful time there at the farm. I extended my stay. By the time I left, which was months later than the 4 weeks I originally planned, the Big Man was not only my firm friend, he had also become an unbelievable example of unshakable integrity. He was right. I didn’t want to leave, but I felt it was time for me to go. And the night before I left he said, “When things get tough, don’t forget to breathe.”

Well, what do you know. Things got really tough when I returned Stateside. Three days after staying with my best friends I was kicked me out onto the street in the dead of winter. I was afraid my truck would be impounded because my insurance lapsed. I spent the night in sub-freezing weather wondering how I would get through this ordeal, wondering what I had done to “deserve this.” I kept breathing. I survived. I was offered a place to stay until I could get back on my feet. I just had to move to North Carolina. Luckily, I had just enough cash to make the journey. But that episode did not fare too well, either, and I found myself back in Bernard’s living room once again. When he saw my haggard face (I’d been through a lot), he just grinned and offered me a cigarette.

The last time I saw Bernard was when dropped me off at the King Shaka airport, August 4, 2010. Esteni was also there and we all embraced warmly as he said to me, “You will be back here in 5 years to stay.” And he smiled. It sounded like one of his ironclad promises. I turned and headed into the airport, fully expecting to see him again. But I heard the news today. Such a reunion is now impossible. Bernard’s gone. I heard this morning that it was a fatal heart attack.

I feel strangely quiet inside writing this, but it has been an awfully long day. Maybe I’m still in a bit of shock, maybe I’m just being calm. Maybe it will hit me later. I’m sure there are many hugs and tears to go around. But life goes on. The Desteni Group lives on, and this Group will not wimp out or fragment or disappear. Sorry, haters, but the shit just got real.

Over the years, there has been many blogs that I have written that were pretty hard to write. While this isn’t one of those instances, I must confess that there’s an existential void Bernard left that is destined to be filled with our focus, determination, fearless purpose and integrity of the Desteni Group. Meeting, knowing and living among so many Destonians makes this day a lot easier to walk through. To everyone on the farm,; Esteni, Sunette, Andrea, Cerise, Leslie-John and all the others – I love you all. And I am grateful to have lived, worked, sweated and wondered on the land that existed under Bernard’s feet.

(From the Diary. There are so many stories about hanging out with Bernard that I could relate, and I may write about them later, but If there is one event from my time spent with the Big Man that encapsulates how my life was forever transformed, this would be as good as any).
October 7, 2008

LJ asked if I could help with the planting. I booted up and put on my Indiana Jones hat and made my way to the patch where the guys had plowed the day before. I’m given instructions by Fidelis on where and how to plant the seeds into one of the two plots that had been plowed. Okay, so this will be cool. I’m planting seeds into the dark earth. Watermelon, corn, squash, tomato. Rain had been falling over the past few days (it’s the raining season here in South Africa). But today was a good, warm day. The flying ants were out and the entire valley was buzzing with millions of the things. We planted into the afternoon and took a break to re-hydrate. Gian and Jesper jumped into the pool while I was playing with the dogs, and I said to myself, “Yeah. Good idea.” The water was cold, but felt okay after a while.

Leslie-John called us back to the field and we planted more seeds into the earth.

After we were done, I returned to the house and sat in the lounge to cool off. I was feeling very frustrated for some unknown reason. Very frustrated. Slowly I came to see that I was frustrated with myself. I was so happy being in such a place where support and understandings were coming left and right. But it felt I wasn’t moving fast enough. What was it? I was still shaking. It had been with me all day. Bernard pointed it out first thing in the morning. “Shaking,” he said. All day out in the field planting seeds, I felt it. A miasm that was showing me that I am slowly dying. Here I am in this beautiful, life-affirming place where I am being supported, fed, housed, given understandings that I never had before. And each tremor reveals that I’m slowly dying. Nothing’s changed. I am still the same loser that I have been my entire life that nobody cares about. I’m still the same old ridiculous fool, everybody’s favorite punching bag. To come this far in my life where I could finally see myself being of some use to myself and the world only to be one the losing end of the stick once again, this was just too much to bear.

I am useless.

I felt I was ready to walk. I was tired of doubting and wanting and waiting. I saw that nothing in this world was of any use and I was ready to be counted on.

Was this some kind of joke? Is this where self-honesty has led me? With cosmic egg on my face? How did I allow myself to be used and have how did I allow myself to waste my life; to have it turned to shit? To accept living in the teeth of a nightmare?

Because I allowed it. The blackness of that moment of realization was heartbreaking.

Bernard pointed to one eye and said to me, “Darryl. See.”

And I saw.

I saw that nothing will ever change for me because I still carried who I am that has existed from the past. I still claimed this self-image that I had painted on the canvas of my life. And that painting was finished. It would last for eternity.

And then I saw something else. I saw that I do not have to carry that painting any longer. I could release it and paint another self and walk as that!

One that was effective, self-directive. One that stood one and equal with the entirety of existence and did not doubt or waste his life in senseless, useless time loops. One who trusted himself. One who would never ever, ever quit. A self that would stand the test of time.

Could it be that simple?

Could it be that instead of waiting for change to be thrust upon you, or given to you from somewhere outside yourself, you could change yourself in one moment? In one breath? Just by releasing the past? Just by literally seeing yourself integrate all that is, equal and one? Just by seeing that what passes for ‘life’ in this existence has no honor and here, it stops. I took a breath.

I noticed that the shaking stopped. Tears filled my eyes. Bernard, with cigarette in his hand, asked, “Do you get it?”

Yes, I got it.

I could walk.
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Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Adele »

Bernard’s death came as a great shock, disrupting my inner world, I could not make sense of the lighting speed of thoughts spinning in my mind – it was like a tornado, I felt sick and scared.
But today I just realized that we do not need Bernard, Bernard was good at showing us our reflections back to us because he became equal and one with life – But our reflections have always been there. So if you think you need Bernard – just look around you – what are you judging in another, what opinions are you spinning in your backchat, what are you saying another is doing to you? What are you saying that you do to yourself? That is then your reflection point – You are seeing who you are and we have the tools to change, and learn to stand and be as equals.

I am grateful that Bernard has brought us all together, that he shook our delusional inner world up, and he opened our eyes to see the truth and the way, so that we as him can become one and equal as LIFE.

I thank you all for these amazing recaps you are sharing about Bernard, I am learning from them. These are of great inspiration and remembrance of why we are here together as a group.

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Joined: 10 Aug 2011, 18:17

Re: Bernard's Passing Away

Post by Eleonora »

Day 348: Bernard Poolman Died so that All May Live

I am currently staying at the Desteni farm.
Yesterday morning at 8 am we had an extraordinary meeting, it was extra-ordinary because we don't gather on Sunday mornings usually and then it was extraordinary because once we met we were told by Cerise that her Dad, The Devil, had died overnight.

I experienced a state of shock so vast that I could not contain my tears and just cried and cried while listening to how this happened. There was no WHY though, no one had a why for this death, yes, his body was under a lot of stress due to the position he had taken upon himself in service of Life, but then again, how can Life Die, what does it mean when Life Dies while there is no other Life yet that can take over?

The people who have been hit the worse of course are his closest family and the people who had the privilege to share the space and time during which he lived and walked at the farm as a Living Example of what it means to exist and breathe a principled Life beyond personal interest.

I have been with Desteni for almost 3 years now and have been on the farm for over a month, 40 days to the Death of Bernard, that is for sure a milestone and a day that will be hard to forget as everyone came together in grieving, telling stories, holding together a group that has to walk the same principle but that may have -although unwillingly or unawarily- piggybacked on Life itself one way or another, safe and sound about the fact that the Ultimate Point of reference as Bernard lived among us, that he would be there to sort out our petty life commitment that seem to need constant direction because we are unable to even walk the simplest things we have committed to walk, always looking for ways out, for shortcuts, to engage solely in tasks that will expose us as valuable members of a community where we have invested time and therefore value.

What distinguishes the people who are walking process in awareness from those who are not it's either that those who are not do not know about the process and the tools of Desteni or they have just found ways to justify WHY they are not required to change, while within our group we have taken the first step, we have admitted that we need to change, we are aware that we need to change which means that we are even the more responsible for walking this process consistently, to make sure that those that didn't find the tools yet, can find us.

I have met Bernard in person and spent time with him for over a month, too little, wish I had more time with him so he could tell me again and again that he was just 'Normal' and that it was 'I' who was abnormal, convinced that there was any value to the commentary that runs in my head oftentimes, he told me 'get rid of the good commentary as well, it's just a waste of time', and it's easy to see how we have gladly embraced the tools to get rid of what was not working for us, but not to get rid of what is apparently working, because, obviously, it's working, isn't it?

At the beginning of my walk with Desteni, the language that was repeated again and again, scared me, never when it came from Bernard though, because his words 'Lived', they were 'lived', when he would talk about 'what is best for all' he meant it, he had moved beyond preferences and likes and dislikes, I never once heard anything he said as either empty or as preaching, his words were who he was, this is why I was soo many times hit by the substance of his words to the points of tears, the words of one who has put himself as Life into them are powerful, they are Alive and they will live as a substantial legacy of what has to be done.

The other day Bernard was explaining a bit of Homeopathy and he said 'Likes cures Likes, simple, isn't it - so Like what you DisLike' - a bit like the post he wrote a few days ago when he stated that we are our own Weather station where our weather systems are managed by external inputs such as 'whether is this or that' and can cause internal storms or sunny days, which brings back the point of a computer program, the famous code line 'if this than that' and how simple equations have become the starting point of every one of our moves, we are whether systems and we are ruled by the if this than that equations we ourselves set up a long time ago or that we accepted others to set up long time ago For Us.

Bernard was a Big Man, his presence was hard to match, it didn't matter how many times he told us he was our Equal, I am sure most of us didn't feel Equal at all and so Bernard died, removed himself from the equation, deliberately, specifically, as everything he did, to create the vacuum that nature abhors so much, because every vacuum must be filled, and he trained people to stand up and fill the Space he left.

What does it mean to Stand Up, for real? Here we could have the 'police manual' version of the answer 'to protect and serve' and we have plenty words to define this imaginary 'standing up' in a Four Musketeer fashion 'one for all and all for one' sort of way - and we should refrain from doing so, specifically in the wake of Bernard's passing, where many who may have been walking silently or that kept to themselves may be looking for directions and to join as a way to find the stability they found when they knew Bernard was around.

Standing up means to stop the Mind, to stop believing whatever your mind throws at you, to slow down, find the origin of everything that created 'me' so that 'we' may correct our existences at the very origin, re- parent ourselves into self honest human beings, check every point we face, self correct, see where I am, I am Here and point by point integrate our self into a grid of integridy, a grid we have self created, self designed, where each point we rewrote is standing considering all points of the equation, where my 'I' is used to see and check as the 'Eye' of the Needle, the Eye that sees the Needs of All and is not deaf or dumb or uncaring but Stands instead as a Point of Self Correction, as a point of Self Creation of a World that Works for All.

So, as a group, we no longer have the luxury of engaging the Mind because Bernard will not be around to help to sort ourselves out, this is the vacuum we fill, the vacuum of what we have not yet created, the grid of integridy, no longer a faulty operating system, but a net-work of support for us and the World that interacts with us beyond the Mind and we don't have the luxury to mourn him beyond what our physical has the need to process and as well we don't have the luxury to not mourn him because we have made up some funny ideas about what process is because then we didn't get it, process is to self honest live the moment in breath, anything else is dishonest, is an opinion, an idea about, such as in this case would be about Destonian mourning, it's not reality based, it's not Real.

And on a last note, we remind ourselves that we are working to stop the existence of a polarity based world, where many lose so that few can win, where Rights and Wrongs are dictated and reflected by how much Money One Has, to either write the Laws, to uphold them or to evade them and within this we redefine our ideas about Morality as well, as a word that was specifically designed to keep the sheeples within the lines of accepted nonthreatening behavior, Morality is dishonest in a world where not everyone has Equal access to it, Morality is a luxury and as such unacceptable in an immoral world, we have work to do, a lot of work, up there those lost in the Mind don't have the tools and maybe the will to self correct, we owe it to Existence to Stand beyond anything that would prevent this message to spread, many of us will soon be involved with the Educational side of our Project, How Far are We willing to go to get this done?
Because the Mind will not stop in front of anything, we as The Mind won't stop our self interested existence because that is The Nature of Ourselves as The Mind, we have to re-parent our Minds into an existence of Harmony, into Equality and Oneness with the Physical and take on those who are too lost to even consider the common sense of a Solution that would work for all.
We have the tools, we have our points to walk, we have each other, do we have what it takes to bring about this change?

Bernard did, he took the Miss-Fits of society and created a group to stand beyond all Whethers and he would not stop, he would not be stopped by anything, he was willing to go the whole way, he gave up his Life so that All May be Life.

Now each one has got to ask themselves the question, can I stand, can I Self Honestly say I can stand or should I remove myself from this group, from the Time I am taking away from others that may make it because they will be more disciplined than what I am willing to be - and what does it mean to stand?
It's not the Destonian logo that shows anyone's stand, or the 'LIKE' on Facebook or sharing Bernard's words, nor the many years of involvement or the many blogs- if anything this should be a measure of ineffectiveness if after So many years one has not managed to change oneself?- but what are we willing to give up for Life.
Can we give up the Porn, the abuse, the self abuse, our self judgement, the judgement of others, our wavering walk, our desires to walk away from our commitments, our excuses to why we don't have time to participate, to self correct, to do our assignments, can we give up our preferences, likes and dislikes, can we stop the bullshit, our pettiness, so that nothing stands in the way of us making a clear decision that is always best for all, can we give up this Life for the life of All, what are WE willing to give up for Life?

Here stood and lived a man who gave it All up for Life, our Life, every Living Being's Life, we better match such a commitment with our own, Bernard did not die in Vain, he won't even have a funeral, or a gravestone to be reminded by, his ashes will be scattered back to the Earth, let's not allow ourselves to make him die invain.

Let's make ourselves Matter as we Stand up for Life - because if we don't, if we can't give up the Illusion for Life, really, we don't matter at all.

- See more at: http://adirectorjourneystolife.blogspot ... -that.html

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