Collage of Literature About Subud
Books In Print and Out of Print
Shown below are a sampling of several books available on Subud. Some resources to find books:
Many of these books are available digitally on:
A bibliography of Subud literature:
An Extraordinary Man Stories of Subud Members’ Experiences of Bapak
Publisher: Williams (ed)., Emmanuel, 2009
It began at the 2008 USA National Congress. People were telling stories of their experiences of Bapak. Funny, deeply touching, won- derfulstories.Iwas thinkingasIlistenedthatthestory-tellers,all members of the generation who knew Bapak, met him at gatherings, greeted him at airports, drove him across cities, cleaned vegetables for him in kitchens, sat – awake or asleep – as he gave a talk, are growing old. As I am. Quite soon we’ll all be gone, we first genera- tioners. We’ll be off in another dimension doing special latihans with fallen angels and testing for committee positions, and the stories of our encounters with Bapak will disappear. Someone should collect them, I thought. Put them in a book. Definitely.
Then I realized that this someone was me. Oh. Right, well okay then. So I announced my intention at a plenary and began collecting stories.
That was over a year ago. Since then the Bapak book has been a major presence in my life, and it will seem strange not to be working on it any more. Now that it’s done I’ve been wondering why this task came my way. I find three reasons that make sense to me, although there are doubtless more –
Subud is a tribe. One day, God willing, millions, even billions of human beings will be tribal members. Like all tribes, we need and seektobeconsciousofourorigins. Manyofthestoriesonthese pages tell of the early days of Subud, especially its arrival in the West.
Although I’ve been in Subud since 1961, and lived in Cilandak for 7 years, until I worked on this book, I had no idea who Bapak was, or is. I love him even more than I did. And I’ve found that, as my un- derstanding of Bapak deepens, so does my latihan. This may be be- cause, as Pak Kuswanda says, “Bapak is the latihan.” This spiritual boost is an unanticipated and very welcome gift. May it be given to you, dear reader.
Recently, a young, newly-opened Subud member told me she feels Bapak in her latihan and wishes she knew more about him. There are and will be many more like her. It’s my hope and prayer that this book will bring Bapak closer to the younger and future gen- erations of Subud members who never met him in the flesh.
This book is dedicated to them. To you second, third, fifth, tenth ‘generationers’, you rebel teenagers who shy away from Subud be- cause your parents are in it, you bubbling chortling babies destined to be opened years away from this misty morning in the Fall of 2009. God bless you all.
This book includes stories from members who never met Bapak in the flesh. Bapak is still with us.
An Extraordinary Man contains over two hundred stories of Subud members’ experiences of Bapak. The stories are organized thematically. You’ll find small sub-groups here and there – a sequence of Bapak dreams, a pair of overcoat stories, two miraculous rice sto- ries. A list of contributors is included at the back of the book.
My intention was that the book would have a choral feel – scores of voices telling their stories, one after another, each story bringing to life both the story-teller and the man they are about.
There are lots more Bapak stories out there, especially from non- English speakers. I hope someone will gather and share more of these.
—Emmanuel Williams, October 2009
Bapak Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo
Published by Subud Publications International
Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo (Bapak), the founder of Subud, was born in Java in 1901 and died there in 1987. In 1924, at Semarang in East Java, he received from Almighty God a way of inner purification and guidance – the latihan kejiwaan (Indonesian for ‘exercise’ or ‘training’) – which, he came to realise, was not something for himself alone, but could be passed on to anyone who wished for it. Published in 1990, this Autobiography is Bapak’s brief, essential account of ‘the history of my journey in developing the latihan kejiwaan of Subud’.
HISTORY OF SUBUD: Volume I: The coming of Subud (1901-1959) Book I: The Beginning in Indonesia
Published by AL-Baz, Houston, 1993
This first instalment of Harlinah Longcroft’s official history of Subud is set almost entirely in Java, ending in May 1957 as Bapak waits at the airport in Jakarta to board the plane for England. In outline, the story of Bapak’s early life and the coming of the latihan is already well known from his Autobiography and references in the published talks. By drawing on a far wider range of sources, including interviews with contemporaries, and supplying an historical and geographical context, Harlinah succeeds in liberating our view of Bapak and the earliest phase of Subud from the crystallisation’s of later years.
A Reporter In Subud
Four volumes in one comprising A Reporter in Subud, Assignment Subud, A Memoir of Subud and Fruitful Droppings; 278 pages.
Adam and His Children; a Brief History of Human Life
Sumohadiwidjojo, Muhammad Subuh
Sydney: Starlight, 1992
Excerpts from talks compiled and edited by Luqman McKingley; Color illustrations from paintings by Medlti; 133 pages.
Journey Beyond the Stars; A Story of the Early Life of Muhammad Subuh
Sydney: Starlight Press, 1988
Songs of Submission on the practice of Subud
von Bissing, Ronimund
Published by James and Clarke, 1962
Description from Bothell Jewelers and Collectibles:
‘Songs of Submission’, subtitled ‘On the Practice of Subud’, by Ronimund von Bissing, was first published in 1962, shortly after Subud spread to the west, and contains 180 pages of spiritually uplifting incites and receivings relating to von Bissing’s experience and expression of what he received through the Subud contact. The passages are truly beautiful and full of spiritual content and meaning.