Monday, August 09, 2010

Rocky Anderson's Personal Statement on Gafni's Plagiarism

[NOTE: Welcome to those of you coming here from the recent NYT article on Marc Gafni. If you would like a more complete understanding of this perpetrator, please look at the following article:

BREAKING: Marc Gafni's Sexual Impropriety Re- Emerges - Will Integral Leadership Step Up this Time? (9/12/2011)

Robb Smith's (then CEO of Integral Life) Response to the Marc Gafni Situation (9/13/2011)

[UPDATED] Plagiarism: Marc Gafni Plagiarized Alan Barstow and Diane Hamilton Took the Fall (8/8/2010)

Abusive Gurus -The Return of Marc Gafni [Updated] (7/7/2008)

Marc Gafni Update & A Confession/Apology (7/12/2008)

Ken Wilber on Rabbi Marc Gafni's Sexual Misconduct (5/16/2006)

John Dupuy - My Opinion on the Marc Gafni Situation (9/22/2011

Tikkun - Zvi Bellin Recounts His Experience as Marc Gafni's Student in Israel (12/16/2011)

Why Is Marc Gafni Featured in 3 Sessions at the 2010 Integral Theory Conference? #itc2010 (7/27/2010)

If you read the comments on these posts, you will several versions of truth. Since these were written, I have spoken with many of Gafni's victims, and the bottom line is that Marc Gafni is a sexual predator and a sociopath. He has created a false persona (spiritual guru) to hide the reality of who he is, a wound little boy acting out of shame.]

Rocky Anderson, Chairman of High Road for Human Rights, asked me to post the following clarification of the events that I blogged about yesterday - he wants the facts to be clear.

My hope is that this will be the end of my involvement in this issue - if the primary people involved wish to continue this issue, I do not want to be involved. As I mentioned this morning, I am not the official Marc Gafni watchdog.
Because there seems to be some confusion, and because I assured Alan Barstow I would provide clarity, I am offering the following in a nutshell:
Alan Barstow spent many weeks researching and writing a piece on slavery. He and I worked on it rather intensively. The section describing the nature and scope of the problem was outstanding; the solutions section at the end needed work, primarily because it was so difficult for Alan and me to reach people who have been working in the field and to obtain their input as to the best means of ending slavery. Marc Gafni volunteered to work on the solutions section. I received his draft and provided him with some rather detailed comments about what needed to be done before it was usable. Marc later said he didn't have any more time to work on it. So I and others, including a summer clerk, proceeded to work on the solutions section (which has been, or will soon be, posted on the High Road web site).
A person in SLC, who has expressed concern to me about Marc's history and what he is doing now, called and asked to meet with me so I could review some documents. That person came to my office and asked me to look at some articles and other information obtained from the internet. In the course of my examination of those documents, I saw the slavery piece Marc has posted on at least two web sites (iEvolve and Integral Life). The person who brought this to my attention was outraged that anyone would use the mud-flap girl to characterize a sex slave. (That image accompanied the slavery piece.) When I was shown the article, which Marc claimed to have written, I said "Whoa! Wait a minute!" I thought I had seen what was in the article before and knew it wasn't Marc's writing. I searched my records and found Alan Barstow's paper. I compared it with what Marc had posted as his work product and was shocked to find that Marc had lifted the Barstow piece almost word-for-word. (I say "almost" only because some headings, a chart, and a few sentences drafted by Barstow were deleted.) There had been no "synthesis" of what Marc and Mr. Barstow had written in the "problem" section of the article. It was entirely Barstow's work.
Marc claimed unequivocally in the first sentence of his posting, before the article, that the article had been written by him and Diane Hamilton. That, of course, was untrue as to the several pages lifted wholesale from Mr. Barstow's work.
This is not the first time this has happened. Marc Gafni posted a very long (over 50 pages) piece written by me (with very minor contributions by, or at the suggestion of, Marc) and held it out to be his own, with no attribution to me. (That piece is actually a booklet entitled "Embracing Democracy for Humane Action," and can be found at I called him and he claimed, as now, that it was simply a sloppy mistake. After my call, Marc finally added at the very bottom a reference to the fact that I had researched and written the piece. But the piece is still found on Marc's web site under the heading "Marc Gafni's Articles". (
Wholesale plagiarism cannot be shrugged off as a "sloppy mistake". The fact is that Marc was provided the piece he knew had been written by Alan Barstow, and he posted it without credit and took credit (also mentioning Diane Hamilton) for it. His willingness to let Diane take any responsibility makes this all the more reprehensible.
One other thing, relating to possible instances of prior plagiarism: I just received the following from someone who has been concerned about Gafni:
I don’t know if you ever had an opportunity to read the deposition from Marc Gafni’s third wife. This is the section in which she describes Marc’s plagiarism of her ideas:
7. Stealing Intellectual Property: Mordechai used other people's stories/teaching (making slight changes) without attributing them properly. (The story in Soulprints about Eitan giving him a soulprint box was, for instance, based upon a story in one of Robert Fulghum's books.) Furthermore, I worked full time on both books "Soul Prints" and "The Mystery of Love". There are entire sections of these books which I myself wrote - with no public recognition given as to the depth and breadth of my contribution. Just a few of the numerous examples of this are the poem/invocation at the beginning of "Soul Prints", as well as the Parable of the Royal Wine in "The Mystery of Love". I insisted that I wanted at least these pieces to be attributed to me. He refused. Seeing I had no real choice, I gave in in the end and allowed the pieces to be used without attribution.

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