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"For we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not of ourselves."

Jesus People Days

by David Hoyt

David Hoyt, former Hare Krishna devotee, was converted in 1967 and was much involved in the Jesus People Movement immediately thereafter. His impact on that time of awakening was large. He is an appropriate chronicler of those days.

Flower Children – The Backdrop

Jesus People gathering

The setting was one of asphalt, neon lights, and places where the pulse of rock music flooded the streets, parks, and concert venues. The music of the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, Jimmy Hendrix, Donovan, Steve Miller’s Blues Band, and a slew of other bands and solo artists were emerging. The year was 1966, and the white rabbit of the Airplane was out and about.

Surrounded by materialism, a hunger for truth, love, and something different gripped the hearts of young people. Mind expanding drugs, mystical religions, astrology, and free love merged with this search, giving birth to a generation called The Flower Children. The music, dress, beliefs, and attitudes about life, war, and peace were non-traditional. A middle class materialistic lifestyle was rapidly losing its appeal amidst a failing war in Vietnam.

‘Flower Power’ was in.  Getting high together and experimenting with ‘free love’ and ‘communal living’ was the new alternative. We congregated at rock concerts, ‘love-ins,’ and ‘be-ins’. Though tainted by drugs, there was an attempt to look at life and the world in a different way.

‘Love and peace’ and the name ‘hippies’ became synonymous. Some wanted truth or God; others were in it for a lifestyle of drugs, sex, communal living, and rock and roll–minus the 9-5 work routine.

In the summer of 1967 this emerging new generation grew and blossomed. Bell-bottom jeans, flowing dresses, and symbols of peace were everywhere. Old world or unusual attire and long hair for both sexes were prevalent. The maidens wore flowers in their hair and guys sought to have a stash of ‘Acid’ LSD, pot, or hash to pass around.

By the hundreds and then thousands a generation migrated to various gathering places or cities. San Francisco and the whole of the Bay Area was one of the very first places of choice.  By word of mouth they came and kept coming – renting apartments, houses, and farms, or buying property to give this experiment of peace and love a chance to prove itself. 

The Haight District of San Francisco joined with the Golden Gate Park to form the Bay Area hub. It provided a combination of communal street activity, access to buying drugs, a gorgeous huge park for mingling,and concerts, and a natural setting in which to get high.

The Mystical and Dark Mirage

Powerful drugs like STP, speed, heroine, and cocaine joined ranks with LSD and marijuana. New Age religions were a hypnotic and enticing replacement for western churches that seemed outdated and distant.
The occult and Satanism also made a bid for the hearts and souls of searching youth. Reading tarot cards, tea leaves, palms, and horoscopes, along with black and white-witchcraft  and other occult practices were invited and accepted by many Flower Children.
The stage was set, the bands played, and drug dealers dealt their potions, as we tried to figure out what to believe.  Light and darkness, freedom and confusion stirred into a strange melting pot. 

(To be continued)

Read all 24 articles in this series:

Part 1: Jesus People Days

Part 2: A Cry Rushed Upward to a Place Called Heaven

Part 3: Ripe for Change and Heart Revolution

Part 4: Recollections of My Search for Truth

Part 5: My Search - A Prelude to Finding God

Part 6: A Search for God Unraveling

Part 7: An Appointment with God

Part 8: Launched into a New Life

Part 9: A Steep Learning Curve

Part 10: God - An Incredible Teacher

Part 11: Lancaster - A Desert Call

Part 12: Back in the City - San Francisco

Part 13: The SF Bay Area Jesus People Movement - Episode One

Part 14: The SF Bay Area Jesus People Movement - Episode Two

Part 15: Mission in Our Blood

Part 16: Crossroads

Part 17: Our Decision - Their Agenda

Part 18: Over My Head

Part 19: Dark Night of the Soul

Part 20: Spiritual Life Bursting Forth

Part 21: The Origins of a New Christian Multi-Media Theatrical Show

Part 22: The Adventure of Following in Jesus' Steps

Part 23: Jesus’ Model of Openness Inspires

Part 24: Occupy Territory - Release Control

David and Ginny Hoyt

Dave Hoyt and his wife Ginny reside in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He grew up a troubled teen in Los Angeles. In 1966 he moved to San Francisco’s ‘Haight District’ seeking truth and God. Reaching a crisis of belief in Eastern Religions – he turned to prayer and came to a saving faith in Jesus Christ. He went on to be an early participant in the Jesus People Movement in the USA and Europe. He continues as a follower of Jesus Christ.




Hoyt and Philpott in 2008

Hoyt and Philpott together in Mill Valley, CA, 2008

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Last Update: 2017-07-24 18:54