Spiritual Master and Philosopher Peter Deunov

Master Peter Deunov-Beinsa Duono

The Master (c. 1917), Prescient Revelator of the Aquarian Age

Peter Deunov, Bulgarian spiritual master and teacher of esoteric Christianity in the early 20th century, is also known for his inspired musical compositions and as the inventor of the Paneurhythmy, a sacred dance of the Universal White Brotherhood. Beinsa Duono is his Bulgarian spiritual name.

The Paneurhythmy has enjoyed a modern revival among students of various spiritual movements. Available are a number of books and many YouTubes demonstrating it. As a youth, Peter had leaned the violin. It was in the enduring, sweet melodies he composed on his violin to accompany the 28 exercises of Paneurhythmy that enlivened his discourses.

The revitalized interest in the Master’s teachings and spiritual practices is best explained in the easing of censorship by the communist regime, affording more Bulgarians more freedom to read his published works. There is awareness of this great master’s words here in the West as well. The late author and lifestyle coach, Wayne Dyer, brought recognition to Peter Deunov’s teachings in the U.S. The increasing popularity of Master Deunov’s premier disciple, the spiritual master, Omraam Mikhaël Aïvanhov, has also served to renew interest in the noetic sciences1 as revealed by Master Deunov.

A Modern Prophet Devoted to the Living Christ

Peter Deunov was born in the village of Hadardja (now Nikolaevka) near Varna, Bulgaria on July 11, 1864. He died December 27, 1944. It is interesting to note that his lifespan coincided with both world wars on the European continent. God undoubtedly placed this shining son in a place and time that required such a brilliant one to help stem the tide of darkness that was inveigling itself across Europe.

Born to a father who was a teacher and then a Bulgarian Orthodox priest, Peter seemed destined to enter the priesthood as well. He studied at the American Methodist School of Theology and Science in Svishtov, Bulgaria. Upon graduation, he worked as a primary school teacher for a year, then left for the United States where he obtained a degree in theology from the Boston School of Theology.2

Returning to Bulgaria in 1895, he was offered a position as a Methodist pastor. He stipulated that he would accept the position only if he would be allowed to serve without wage.3  The job offer was withdrawn in response. Subsequently, he published his first book and began touring and lecturing throughout Bulgaria. He attracted a growing circle of followers, among whom were three students who became his first disciples. It is interesting that each of them represented a different branch of Christianity.

The group’s first formal meeting occurred in July of 1900 in Varna. Later, Master Deunov would name this growing community and movement The Universal White Brotherhood.  

By 1914, the Master was giving Sunday morning lectures expounding on Biblical passages. In 1921, in the municipality of Izgrev near Sofia, his community established a new gathering place, forming the hub from which blossomed an influential spiritual movement.

Continuing his lectures and expanding his talks into a new series of esoteric teachings, the Master shared deep insights into the inner realities of the noetic realms, including the introduction of the Paneurthymy, which took place outdoors and at specific times of the day and year.

His collected works include approximately 3700 lectures spanning three decades. His teachings have been preserved in recorded talks, conversations and letters. His legacy continues today among diverse, multi-national initiates of the sacred mysteries.

Confronted by the Church

The Master Jesus told his disciples to “love one another as I have loved you.” Yet, how many of us truly take this teaching to heart? God continues to send his ministers of fire, evangels, messengers of light, and saints who remind us of our divine Source and oneness in Spirit. Peter Deunov,  a noble son of God, came to recall us to our rootedness in the One Eternal God.

His life was devoted to the living Christ.  And even though he was not an ordained minister or priest, he etched an almost fathomless depth of healing wisdom and grace into the hearts and minds of his students as they were drawn by his purity and wisdom.

The testimonies recorded in the biography, Prophet for Our Times,4 edited by David Lorimer, present numerous examples of the miracles of healing and evidence of saintliness proffered by Peter Deunov’s service to his contemporaries and to the heavenly Brotherhood of Light. We read many accounts of Bulgarian students touched, healed or helped by this master. Here indeed was an exceptional man of God.

However, not all his countrymen recognized his saintliness. In fact, within the existing political and social milieu of Bulgaria and the Slavic region, an organized resistance to the revelations and teachings persisted. There are documented instances where the religious authorities of both Catholic orthodoxy and Protestantism attempted to censor his voice.

In one instance the authorities, with the king’s backing, ordered the forced re-location of Master Deunov from the capital city Sofia to Varna.5  His prominent disciple, Omraam Mikhaël Aïvanhov, confirmed in autobiographical accounts that Master Deunov’s teachings elicited a lot of resentment among influential, local Bulgarian leaders.

Despite this resistance, this prophet and teacher ultimately attracted some 40,000 students, drawn through the power of his exalted instruction, gleaned from the noetic realms.6

A Wellspring of Noetic Teachings

Modern Bulgarians have voted the works of Master Deunov to be among the most significant in Bulgaria’s history.7 Pope John XXIII called him “the greatest philosopher living on the earth.”8 What was it about his teachings that aroused such controversy among Christians and yet profound dedication to its principles among his students?

Biographer, David Lorimer, explains that the Master’s teachings were “… a philosophy that transcends the outer limitations of physical science and the inner restrictions of fundamentalist religion … an esotericism which has its roots firmly within the Western spiritual tradition.”9  Much as Jesus taught mysteries reserved only for his inner circle of disciples, Master Deunov revealed deep, mystical truths that only some were ready to accept.

The Master explained the origin of his wisdom: “You must realize that I have been sent by God, that I have not come merely because of my desire…. God speaks through Christ. God speaks through me. The ideas which I am introducing in my lectures are taken from a divine source. That which Christ spoke and that which I say come from the same source.”10

Peter Deunov was among the first to recite the liturgy in the common language of the people, rather than in Old Bulgarian, the traditional sacred language of Church Slavonic.11 He encouraged his students to commune directly with God.  And as Jesus called himself a Son of God, when the Christ is also born in our souls, “that is the resurrection, that is the awakening of the human soul…. [T]herefore, you too may call yourselves sons of God.”12

Performing as an awakener of men’s souls, he taught his followers what the path of true discipleship entails. The first requirement is to make a space within for the acceptance of inner truth. It is the work of the disciple to prepare the way for the coming of the Kingdom of God on Earth. That is to say, the inner truth of our individual, blossoming Christhood, one by one, prepares the way for wider acceptance of the Christ consciousness in and for all.

Discipleship is a commitment to serving God in oneself and in others. It is studying under a master and going within to realize how to be the best servant of God possible. Another requirement of the disciple is to do the work. Jesus Christ said, “My Father works and I work.”13 To work is to create. Every disciple in the great divine school becomes a co-creator with God through work.

Working in the Three Worlds (Physical, Psychic and Spiritual)

After Jesus’ ascension and then throughout the Middle Ages up until the time of Peter Deunov’s teaching, the monastic lifestyle, for most Christians in the West, was the preeminent vehicle of discipleship. Engrained within our Western culture, the exemplars of saintliness and dedication were those who usually lived within the cloistered environment of monastery or convent.

Now what of this man who distanced himself from the orthodox Church—both Catholic and Protestant—and yet exhibited such purity, wisdom, and every Christly virtue? Master Deunov, by his example and mastery, was able to place the world of the ascended saints and heavenly hierarchy within the reach of the spiritual seeker, and did so outside the accepted norms of the mainstream churches. 

The three worlds—the physical, psychic (of the soul) and spiritual realms—already appeared to be magnificently and fully integrated within the Master by the time he had begun writing and lecturing. Along with his musical creativity, his spiritual practices conveyed to his disciples were purposefully created to harmonize these layers of being in very palpable and joyful ways within the practitioners.

The Unique Genius of the Master

What was it within Master Deunov that prompted him to accept a ministerial position as long as it was without payment? Perhaps he already knew that his flock would be those ready for truths not revealed in the Church of his era. Indeed, at the earliest moment of his appointed ministry, he was already writing about the “New Man” and the “New Era.”14 His teachings, far in advance of what most of his contemporaries could fathom, fortunately live on and influence spiritual aspirants of today.

Omraam’s reflections of his master’s life explain how his teacher would use word and gesture to link himself to the divine world.15 Often Master Deunov would be observed using a short phrase or mantra, spoken almost under his breath, accompanied by a gesture of the hands while conversing with his students. By example he demonstrated that one can consciously attune with the higher realms any moment of the day.

In Master Peter Deunov's spiritual community, a variety of methods are used for spiritual work. The Hearts Center has documented 12 of these practices in a 2-page list as a free PDF with a newsletter sign-up here.

 

The Demands of Discipleship

Serious students soon learned their discipleship was far from an armchair affair! There were times they were required to rise as early as 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning to join the Master on his journey up Rila Mountain to greet the sun and engage in other spiritual rituals.16

We owe our gratitude to these early devotees. How many of us would be willing to rise early, to maneuver over rocky mountain terrain before dawn? How many would delight in carrying heavy containers of water uphill to retreat campsites? To this day, students of the Master continue their yearly pilgrimages to the Rila Mountains undergoing almost all of the same inconveniences the early students experienced.

For those of us who may not be up to these rigors, we may still engage in Paneurhythmy, one of the Master’s unique legacies, almost anywhere. In its practice, ideally outdoors in nature, an  alchemical marriage occurs microcosmically within the three worlds of our being. In the macrocosmic arena of the spiritual plane, the students' synchronized movements magically interweave the higher realms with the mundane world here below.

After 1934 the Master gradually combined music, lyric and movement to engage his students in a triune action of coordinated spiritual practices. Through each inspired movement set to mellifluous music, devotees could achieve enhanced levels of divine communion. 

Paneurhythmy–A Macrocosmic Dance of Harmony

Is it really possible to achieve a transformative interchange within us by performing the simple steps of Paneurhythmy? Yes. Imagine luminous angelic beings overshining those engaged in this synchronized, cooperative movement, giving delight to nature spirits gathered to partake in the unifying act of the three worlds. A divine harmonization, a beatific reconcilliation, and even grand exhaltation can be achieved by devotees of this artful science.

The over-arching presence of the Master invites all three kingdoms—human, angelic and elemental—to contribute to this panoply of meaningful, joyful movement. Please join us as together we bless the world by entering into harmony with the music of the spheres as brought to you by Master Deunov and his cohorts in heaven, the Shining Ones. All are welcome. The requirements are a willingness to learn and a belief that you are drawing down hearven's virtues into your being and into the earth itself with every mindful gesture and footstep. 

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References

1. The word noetic and its cognates are used to denote the Bulgarian term razoumen, meaning at once rational, wise and spiritually intelligent. The word also points to a deep inner meaning and relatedness subsisting between all things. The word is not simply a concept, but is experientially the light of God within, corresponding to a particular level of being. “By the word God we mean the noetic principle which regulates and harmonizes physical, spiritual and divine laws”. (61-62 Prophet for Our Times by David Lorimer)
2. Peter Deunov also enrolled at the School of Medicine (Boston University) in Madison, New England. He remained in America for seven years, returning to Bulgaria in 1895.  (Wikipedia.org, 19)
3. Another reported account states that Deunov flatly declined the offered position.
4. David Lorimer, Prophet for Our Times: The Life and Teachings of Peter Deunov (Hay House, 2015).
5. Omraam Mikhael Aivanhov, Life with the Master Peter Deunov Autobiographical Reflections 2 (Prosveta, 2010) 15 and 47
6. Prophet for Our Times, 23.
7. Wikipedia article, Peter Deunov.
8. Ibid.
9. Prophet for Our Times, 42.
10. Ibid., 43.
11. Deunov's father was the first priest in Varna to preach in the Bulgarian language, according to Lubomir Tchervekov (Lubomir.name/peter-deunov/).
12. Ibid., 43.
13. Ibid., 76.
14. See titles: The New Life (1922), The New Humanity (1947), The New Man (1947), Sofia. By Peter Deunov.
15. The Master Omraam Mikhael Aivonhov was often referred to as "Master Omraam” or simply “Omraam.”
16. Life with the Master

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The Master asks:  "Have you sung yet today?" Through the science of harmony, release the power of the spoken word through song, chanting and toning, Learn how to employ Aquarian music to release divine, pure love into the world. Course page here.

Peter Deunov Books

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Both of these featured volumes were used as reference texts for writing the article on this page.

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peter Deunov Music CD Kiamet Zenou
Music CD composed by Peter Deunov and a disciple,
performed by the renowned Vera Choir available here.

 

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The Paneurhythmy as demonstrated by the I.D.E.A.L. Society

 


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The Paneurhtymy Dance taught by Ardella Nathaniael

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