The Leela Foundation
Dedicated to world peace and freedom through universal self-realization

3 Questions to Ask Yourself When Writing a Memoir

Writer’s Digest, October 24, 2018

When I wrote An Outlaw Makes it Home, I had written several other books but nothing this personal. Since I have never read any advice on writing a memoir, these tips are only from my own direct experience.

In my 20s, after an amazing set of adventures in the 1960s, I orally told my stories as a way of seduction. I was a good story teller and became better after we smoked a joint together. But those stories were casual, episodic moments without a coherent core.

When I was 60 and facing death from an incurable blood and bone cancer, I reflected on what I would like to leave behind after I died. While undergoing chemotherapy and stem cell transplants, and confined to my bed, I wrote Songs of Freedom, a poem that encapsulates everything I had realized and wanted to pass on.

Eli Jaxon-Bear, Devotee of Love

by Hélène T. Stelian, July 25, 2018

What is your life’s purpose? 
To serve world peace and freedom through everyone waking up.

How are you living your purpose? 
I have given my life to pass on what has been given to me: a direct realization of my true nature. I do this by meeting with people in events around the world and by training a staff of trainers in the skills of passing it on.

Interview with The Native Society

The Native Society, July 24, 2018


Eli Jaxon-Bear is the author of An Outlaw Makes It Home, Wake Up and Roar, Sudden Awakening, and Fixation to Freedom. He has worked as a mailboy, dishwasher, steel-worker, teacher and organic farmer. He was a community organizer with VISTA in Chicago and Detroit before entering a doctoral program at the Graduate School of International Studies in Denver, Colorado. He has been living with his partner and wife, Gangaji, since 1976. They currently reside in Ashland, Oregon. Eli meets people and teaches through the Leela Foundation.

The Life-changing Power of Self-enquiry

The Primal Happiness Show, Episode 194, 2018

This week’s show is Eli Jaxon-Bear, the author of An Outlaw Makes It Home. A life long search for freedom took Eli around the world and into many spiritual traditions from a Zen monastery in Japan to a Sufi circle in Marrakesh, among others. His search ended when he was drawn to India (1990) where he met his final teacher, Papaji; a direct disciple of the renowned Indian Sage Ramana Maharshi.

Confirming Eli’s realization, his teacher sent him back into the world to share his unique psychological insights into the nature of egoic suffering in support of self-realization.

Five Traps to Avoid in the Pursuit of Happiness

Conscious Connection Magazine, June 17, 2018

Our Declaration of Independence states that we are all created equal and enjoy the rights of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”   The sad joke here is that the “pursuit of happiness” almost never leads to lasting happiness, whether for George Washington or anyone else. Before we examine why that is, and a way to true happiness, a disclaimer from me:

I grew up neurotic and unhappy with no expectation of ever being happy. I looked around and saw that no one that I knew was happy and everyone was faking it. So I gave up on happiness at a very early age.

And yet, I have actually found true happiness and fulfillment. This has been my condition for almost thirty years through all the vicissitudes of life. That does not mean having a smiley face all the time nor does it mean not feeling sadness, pain or anger as there is a time for everything. I was not happy about having cancer and facing my death, but it also did not touch the underlying bliss of life. This happiness is everyone’s birthright.

Interview with Connections Magazine 1997

Hi, Eli. Can you describe in a few sentences the central message of your work?

Eli: My work is to support everyone waking up from the trance of egoic suffering. My life is committed to a world of true peace and true freedom through universal Self-realization.

What does spiritual evolution/development mean in your own personal life?

I was not drawn to a spiritual life initially. Personal awakening never interested me. Like most people, I just wanted to be happy, which meant that I wanted everyone to love me and do what I wanted them to do and to be free to do whatever I wanted to do. And like most everyone else, I was not successful at this. So even though I had loving parents and a comfortable upper middle-class life, I was miserable and I made those around me miserable. A typical neurotic childhood.

Interview for Recto-Versea Magazine

By Bertrand Coquoz, Geneva, Switzerland
Recto-Verseau Magazine, March 1999

“Drop all thought. Drop into silence, turn your back on all manifestation and see who you really are.”  – Eli

How do you usually present yourself? Your name is Eli Jaxon-Bear. Do you have anything to do with Indians?

Most people just call me Eli.  I have had many different names just in this lifetime. Since I was a revolutionary in the ’60s, I had to use different names. When I was a federal fugitive during the Vietnam War, my name was once Norman Brown. During a ceremony with a Mescalero Apache in 1973 I was given the name Eli Jaxon-Bear and it stuck. Now, as some karmic joke, my daughter just named my granddaughter Reagan!

Interview with Sein Magazine 2000

Berlin – Germany, 2000

As an international teacher, do you see a similarity or a connection between us now and the circumstances that gave rise to Hitler and his power?

Yes, there is a deep connection. This connection is fear based on selfishness. As long as fear runs people’s lives, they project the enemy as some foreign force. Fear is based on insecurity, which is rooted in ignorance of the truth. This fear is what keeps the whole system running, keeps everyone economically enslaved. Unemployment has nothing to do with foreign workers, but is a function of a capitalist free market economy. This economy runs on fear and greed based in deep ignorance.  It is a lot easier to imagine that the enemy is a Turkish worker and not the entire system of economics.

What advice would you give people so that this does not happen again?

Interview with Connections Magazine 2001

Connections Magazine, May 2001

What is satsang?

Satsang is sitting with a fully realized teacher who transmits silence and realization. Anyone can speak the words of satsang. My teacher, Papaji, used to say you can teach a parrot to speak the words of satsang. And since the words are so powerful, they will have an effect. But the words are only pointing to what is beyond the words.

The true teacher is satsang, not the words that are spoken. I have been with very powerful teachers who had very strong shakti (spiritual power), but they were not transmitting freedom. When I met my teacher, his living presence was the emanation of silence. His words were used to cut through the false identification of mind. So both the transmission of silence and the intelligent insight into the condition of the human mind are the two sides of satsang.

Commitment to Truth – Do I want to be true or to be right?

Visionen Magazine
August 2002

It seems important for me to address in this specific moment when committing myself endangers my protections. Giving the true answer each time brings me to face the fear and helps me to fall into a deeper natural trust and unknown silent truth. In this subject, here are the questions:

Speaking about Truth turns often into speaking about some mystical thinking. This thinking was some years ago, quite unknown in our society and it starts to become usual. The words of the saints that come into our culture are even used in advertisement. Can you explain this whole issue of Truth.