Subud Around the World




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Excerpts Describing What Subud Is from Around the World


A collection of descriptions from several Subud organizations.  If you would like to contact Subud for more information, please visit Subud USA’s Contact Page.

Subud USA Website

Subud USA

Excerpt from Subud USA


Subud is an association of people from different religions, beliefs, nationalities and cultures. Its members experience a direct contact between themselves and the Great Life Force, or the power of God. This experience, which we call latihan kejiwaan, is received in the form of spontaneous movements or understandings that are unique for each person. It is not learned or taught, but is something natural, arising within us.

Many of our members are active in social, cultural and entrepreneurial activities that aim to benefit humankind.

Subud has no theories or dogma, no teachers, no leaders. All people are welcome and can share this experience to discover their own true self and human potential through the inner guidance of the latihan.

World Subud Association Website

World Subud Association

Excerpt from Word Subud Association

The essence of Subud is a spiritual exercise or training called the ‘latihan’ which is open to people whatever their religion or belief. Through this practice, a person may spontaneously experience inner changes that allow one to be more fully human, more sensitive to higher values and usually manifest themselves in a person’s everyday pursuits.

Subud involves no doctrine and is not based on following a particular leader/teacher; people form their own beliefs based on their personal experiences.

The WSA exists to support the practice and use of the latihan, the human activities that arise from it…..

Subud Palo Alto

Subud Palo Alto

Excerpt from Subud Palo Alto

What is Subud?

Subud is a direct spiritual experience of the soul being reawakened by the power of God. Receiving this contact with the Great Life Force is a simple, natural process which arises spontaneously without effort, study, gurus, or teachers.

Subud Marin

Subud Marin

Excerpt from Subud Marin

About Subud

SUBUD is an acronym that describes someone who aspires to be a good and noble person. Subud is also an organization of people who experience the latihan kejiwaan (spiritual training) ~ the natural process of following the inner guidance we have within us.

Subud is not a religion, teaching, nor a method or concept. The words “the latihan kejiwaan (spiritual training) of Subud” are words that describe an experience that works without our effort.

Subud does not cost money or contain a hierarchy. Everyone is equal and every experience is unique. The spiritual training comes from within each person, suited to their individuality. 

Subud is open to anyone (17 years or older) of any religion or no religion, who wishes to become a noble person guided by the highest source of good. Some call this God. Or Allah. Or Yahweh. Whatever word you like. 

Once you have experienced the latihan kejiwaan (spiritual training), you are Subud. 

Further questions are best addressed in person, as the experience can begin to be felt and understood simply by being in the company of others.

Subud Britain Website

Subud Britain

Excerpt from Subud Britain


“If you want to express Susila Budhi Dharma or Subud with one word, it is unity or being one.”

Bapak Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo, recorded talk on 29 June 1984 in Jakarta, Indonesia. Reference: 84 JKT 4

Subud is an international association of people who follow the latihan kejiwaan, an Indonesian term translating literally as ‘spiritual training’ or ‘spiritual exercise’. The practice of the latihan was explained by Subud’s founder to be a worship of Almighty God, available to all mankind, irrespective of their backgrounds or existing beliefs and which can be practised in conjunction with such existing beliefs. The latihan is discussed further on the page specifically relating to the latihan.

The movement, founded by Bapak Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo (affectionately referred to by Subud members as ‘Bapak’, an Indonesian word meaning ‘father’ or ‘sir’), originated in Java, Indonesia in the mid-1930s and remained an informal association until 1947 when it was agreed to use the name Subud.

The word Subud is an acronym of susila, budhi and dharma, three words with Sanskrit roots – susila, budhi and dharma – which mean:

  • Susila: the behaviour of a good human being according to God’s will.
  • Budhi: the Power of Life that is within a human being.
  • Dharma: surrender, acceptance and submission towards Almighty God.

The basis and aim of Subud is for members to embrace the qualities of susila, budhi and dharma such that they may worship and live in accordance with the will of God for the individual member.

In addition to the Sanskrit-derived definition, the founder described the word Subud as having its own meaning: originating from the source and returning to the source.

Bapak explained that members could find the reality of what this means for them as individuals through their own latihan. As explained elsewhere on this website, the latihan is an experience unique to the individual in which they can feel and learn for themselves the way of worship and the way of life. Bapak often referred to the latihan as “receiving”. Therefore any guidance or teaching is given to the individual by the Power of God directly in their own latihan, it cannot be taught by Bapak or another human being.


The latihan is a gift for all humanity from Almighty God, who is the origin of all life and to whom all life is connected and will ultimately return. Bapak explained that the power of God does not discriminate between faiths or religions and that all human beings are equal before the power of the One who is Almighty.

Consequently, Subud is open to all mankind irrespective of whether they have an existing faith or none at all. It is possible to practise the latihan within Subud while maintaining an active connection with traditional faith or religious practice.

Those who choose to follow the latihan within Subud come with a variety of beliefs, some from specific spiritual or religious traditions. People from a wide range of ethnic backgrounds, nationalities and cultures practise the latihan together in over 70 different countries.

Bapak always made it very clear that the choice to join Subud must be an informed and voluntary one made by each individual. Neither Bapak or Subud members apply pressure or unsolicited encouragement on anyone to join. Furthermore people are always free to discontinue their association with Subud at any time should they so choose, as a sincere willingness to follow it is of paramount importance.

Bapak explained that the source of the latihan is the One Almighty God and referred to the source in those terms. However, he left it to individual members to verify that for themselves in their own latihan and to refer to that One source of the latihan by whatever name or reference they felt comfortable with.

Subud Canada Website

Subud Canada

Excerpt from Subud Canada

an international spiritual movement

Subud is an international spiritual movement that began in Indonesia in the 1920s. Its founder, Bapak Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo, was born in Central Java in 1901 and died in 1987.

Subud is open to people of all walks of life, faiths and cultures and has currently spread to more than 83 countries around the world, including Canada.

There are approximately 400 members in Canada and over 15 meeting places. Subud Canada is the national organization that assists its members to function as a community and to maintain a connection with the other member countries of the World Subud Association.

The spiritual practice of Subud is called the ‘latihan’ (an Indonesian word for ‘training’) and is understood to mean a training of the soul or the training of one’s inner self.

 “….in Subud, you will receive the reality, the truth of everything, and this will enable you to become human beings who are truly complete….” —from a talk by the founder of Subud, August 1983

Subud New Zealand Website

Subud New Zealand

Excerpt from Subud New Zealand

What is Subud

Subud is a way to renew contact with the power of God. It is a direct spiritual experience which arises from within. Receiving this contact with the Great Life Force re-awakens your inner feeling and puts you in touch with your own guidance. It is a simple, natural process that occurs without effort or study.

Where Did It Come From?

This contact was first received in Indonesia in 1925 by Bapak Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo (1901-1987). After three years of receiving this spiritual experience, which he called the latihan kejiwaan, Indonesian for spiritual exercise, Bapak was able to pass it on to others. In time, they also were able to transmit it to those who asked.

Subud Paris Website

Subud Paris

Excerpt from Subud Paris

What is Subud?

 Subud is an international association of people who follow the spiritual practice of Latihan Kejiwaan (Indonesian terms meaning: spiritual exercise). The latihan Kejiwaan is perceived as the training of the soul through an exercise of surrender to the Divine power in each of us. Subud brings together people of all religions or with no particular religious affiliation. Members come from different cultures, nationalities and all walks of life.

Subud was founded in the 1920s by Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo (1901-1987), more commonly known as Bapak. Bapak is an Indonesian term meaning father, and is used with respect to any elderly or respected man. The latihan came to him in the form of a revelation, suddenly and unexpectedly. Bapak was then able to pass this contact on to his family and relatives, and then to other people.

Subud is the contraction of three Javanese words derived from Sanskrit: Susila Budhi Dharma . Bapak talks about it like this:

  • Susila expresses the capacity to live in accordance with the Will of God.
  • Budhi indicates the existence in all creation, in every creature of God, including man, of a divine power which works within and without it.
  • Dharma expresses the possibility that every creature has, including man, to surrender confidently and sincerely to the Will of God.
  • Susila Budhi Dharma is the symbol of what we practice in the latihan. It means that whatever happens in the latihan of Subud is entirely willed by God and comes to us because it is God’s will for us.
  • The Divine power which acts in us in the latihan will bring to each one what is in accordance with his nature. As a result, there is neither theory nor spiritual teaching in Subud. It is God who will lead you to Himself and the reality of what happens in the latihan is that you get to know your true inner being.

 The Subud organization is global. It is made up of local, national and international committees. Local groups allow people to meet to practice Latihan together. The association was established in the East in 1947, and in the West since 1957. Latihan is now practiced by thousands of people in over 80 countries around the world.

Subud Indonesia Website

Subud Indonesia

Excerpt from Subud Indonesia

What is Subud?

 Subud is an abbreviation of the words Susila, Budhi and Dharma. Subud is not a new religion nor a sect of any religion; nor is it a teaching.

It is only a symbol for the possibility for mankind to follow the right way of living.

Subud is open to people of all religious affiliation, as well as those with none. Members come from different cultures, nationalities and walks of life, and there is no particular Subud dogma that they are required to accept. The essence of Subud is the personal experience of the latihan.

If you want to know more click here, What is Subud

Although it is based upon a religious experience, Subud is not in itself a religion, nor is it a teaching. It is an acknowledgement of the Power of God which fills and controls the whole universe, both that which can be seen and that which is invisible to our ordinary sight, and it is also the experience of this power at work within each individual.

There is no dogma in Subud, no creed and no priesthood. Neither is there a leader other than the One Almighty God. In common with the great religions of the world, its members hold that God cannot be comprehended by the mind of man. All that is required of us is that we should, in patience and sincerity, surrender and submit our own will to the Will of God. Subud is neither of the East nor the West, but is of all mankind, one humanity facing One Almighty God.

It is not new for the experience is as old as humanity, the Grace of God bestowed upon human beings according to His Will; but there is something new in it, for this appears to be the first time in human history that it has been made so easy for mankind to receive it. Subud is open to any sincere individual over the age of seventeen, without regard to race, colour, creed, religion, etc.

Those who wish to join are generally asked to wait for a period of three months after they first apply, and if at the end of that time they are still of the same mind, then usually they can start. Many thousands have come to Subud and some have gone away again. It is a gift freely given, but this does not necessarily make it an easy path to follow.

Subud Perth Website

Subud Perth

Excerpt from Subud Perth


Subud is an association of people who follow the spiritual practice known as the Latihan Kejiwaan, an exercise of surrender to the divine force within each one of us. The founder of Subud, Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo from Indonesia, was born in 1901 and died in 1987.

Subud is open to people of all religious affiliation, as well as those with none. Members come from different cultures, nationalities and walks of life, and there is no particular Subud dogma that they are required to accept. The essence of Subud is the personal experience of the latihan.

There are active Subud members in 83 countries in the world. Fifty-four of these countries are members of the World Subud Association. This association is the worldwide umbrella organization for Subud. The WSA, founded in 1991 and registered in Washington, D.C., is a non-profit organization. The WSA exists to enable national Subud bodies to work together and support the practice of the latihan, as well as to foster the educational, cultural, social and entrepreneurial activities that Subud members are involved in.