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Under The Bloated Banyan: Our Sacred Union Journey From False Light To True Love - NEW book release from Raphael and Jelelle Awen! (3/2024)


True love often requires making difficult choices and giving up anything false that gets in the way. 


Marvin Vriend (Raphael Awen) and Jillian Tydeman (Jelelle Awen) seemingly come from two different worlds. Marvin is a conservative, decades-long, dedicated Christian in what he feels to be a lifelong marriage commitment to his first wife with two daughters. Jillian is a professional business coach manager, divorced, single mother, and much more alternative in her approach to spirituality and life.

Their worlds begin to intersect through E-Myth, the coaching business where Jillian works and Marvin is a client in the coaching program. They are both introduced by Nathan, Jillian’s co-worker and Marvin’s coach, to an alternative spirituality and emotional healing group based in Ashland, Oregon led by a charismatic leader named Daniel.

Their worlds begin to collide as they both join the dynamic, exclusive, and transformative world of the group. Jillian finds healing traction with the ‘parts work’ aspects of the work, newly discovered connection with ‘Maker’ or God, community connections, and sessions. She gets drawn in deeper and deeper to the inner circle once she moves to Ashland to be near Daniel and become a facilitator of the group’s process.

As Marvin leaves his long-term marriage, he has already broken off with the Christian Church and has thinning bonds with his daughters, Christian friends, and family. He becomes more deeply engaged in the group’s process of emotional body enlightenment (EBE) through monthly travels to Ashland from his home in Canada to attend individual sessions, seminars (including in Germany), and men’s groups. 

Both remain in the group over the next few years with Marvin bringing unrequited attractions to Jillian a couple of times, even when she is serving as his facilitator. He eventually enters into a meaningful romantic connection with one of Jillian’s close friends and Jillian undergoes a few, ultimately difficult relationships with men in the group as well.

Over time and many circumstances, both of them become more and more disillusioned with what increasingly feels like an unowned and abusive shadow in the group and share a growing concern over Daniel’s tough-love style of leadership. They also can’t ignore his years-long legacy of leaving broken hearts and devastation in former members of three previous versions of the groups that he has led, then collapsed in other cities.

Once the two finally find their way to each other in a powerful mutual attraction and desire for a relationship they are now ready to fully claim, they are faced with a painful ultimatum brought by Daniel of breaking up with each other or leaving the group.

What follows is a brave and tender journey of claiming their own sovereignty, each other, and their relationship with the Divine.

Under The Bloated Banyan is the true story of Jillian and Marvin’s experiences of falling in love within a cult, where they are forced to choose the false light ‘bloat’ of the group or choose their attraction and love for each other. Told in visceral, emotional and transparent memoir form from both of their perspectives, Marvin and Jillian share their journey over several years of giving up anything that was false in order to find and keep true love.


You can purchase the book here as a PDF or on Amazon on website locations around the world in e-book and print editions. 

Here are the instructions for adding this PDF to read in your kindle device or apps once purchased: 

First find your ‘send to Kindle’ email address. To find your Send to Kindle email address, follow these steps:

Go to Amazon: Visit the "Manage Your Content & Devices" page on Amazon.

Access Personal Document Settings:

Click on "Preferences" and then select "Personal Document Settings."

Locate your Kindle email address: Look for the email address ending in "" listed beside your Kindle device. (Note: You can edit this email address to make it easier to remember ie. 

Then open an email and add the PDF that you wish to add to your kindle device as an attachment to the email. Hit send. 

Go to your Kindle App or device. Sync the device. It will there almost instantly.

Under The Bloated Banyan Book PDF By Raphael & Jelelle Awen


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    Under The Bloated Banyan Book | Raphael & Jelelle Awen

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