Abode of Peace
March 29, 2011 4:56 PM Subscribe
The Santiniketan Park Association
posted by wcfields (23 comments total)
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, known informally as "The Family" was a group founded around 1964 after Dr. Raynor Carey Johnson
began hosting regular meetings of a religious and philosophical discussion
group led by the yoga teacher Anne Hamilton-Byrne
on his property on the outskirts Melbourne, Australia.
The group began to recruit potential new members from Newhaven Hospital
, a private psychiatric hospital, owned and managed by Marion Villimek, a Santiniketan member, and staffed by other Santiniketans psychiatrists who would administer LSD to patients.
Later, Anne Hamilton-Byrne acquired fourteen children
between about 1968 and 1975. Some were the natural children of Santiniketan members, others had been obtained through 'irregular' adoptions arranged by lawyers, doctors and social workers within the group who could bypass the normal processes. The children's identities were changed using false birth certificates or deed poll, all being given the surname 'Hamilton-Byrne'
and dressed alike even to the extent of their hair being dyed uniformly blonde
The children were kept in seclusion, home-schooled
, and regularly dosed with an array of pharmacuticals. On reaching adolescence they were compelled to undergo an initiation involving LSD: while under the influence of the drug the child would be left in a dark room, alone, apart from visits by Hamilton-Byrne or one of the psychiatrists from the group
Ultimately after a 1987 police raid on the school, leading to an international manhunt, the adult Hamilton-Byrnes were fined $5000 each on lesser charges. One adoptive daughter, Sarah Hamilton-Byrne
, later wrote a book
, Unseen Unheard Unknown
, and a rumored son may be Julian Assange