Photo from her MySpace page
“Attorneys for Thurston County spiritual-growth leaders JZ Knight and Whitewind Weaver will square off starting Monday in a four-day civil jury trial.
Jury selection begins at 9 a.m. before Superior Court Judge Gary Tabor.
Knight, founder of Ramtha School of Enlightenment in Yelm, alleges breach of contract in connection with an August 2006 seminar in Rainier taught by Weaver.
Knight’s attorneys say that Weaver, founder of the Lacey-based growth-mastery company Art of Life Coaching, signed a “certificate of participation” when she took classes at the Ramtha school. The certificate, according to the attorneys, says the school’s teachings are only for the personal use of students and not for commercial enterprises.
Weaver disputes the claim, saying that her seminar focused on principles she developed independently and has been teaching for years. Weaver’s attorneys said at a hearing in March that some phrases under contention such as “So Be That!” for example were part of the public domain and were not exclusive to Knight, a self-proclaimed channeler of the ancient male spirit warrior Ramtha.
Tacoma attorney Rick Creatura, representing Knight, disagreed.
‘We are confident we will be able to prove that they’ve used the information and techniques of the school, in violation of the contract,’ said Creatura of the law firm Gordon Thomas Honeywell Malanca Peterson and Daheim. He has contended that the legal action is necessary to preserve the purity of the school’s teachings for future students.
Seattle attorney Paul Swanson, who has represented Weaver in the two-year-old dispute, said Knight’s legal action in asking for a jury trial was ‘extraordinarily expensive for a case that just involves a seminar that produced about $10,000 in revenue,’ he said.
‘I think they’re trying to use this case to prevent anyone from doing anything in the Yelm area,’ added Swanson of the law firm Lane Powell Spears Lubersky.
Swanson’s colleague at the firm, attorney David Spellman, will represent Weaver at trial instead of Swanson. Swanson declined to elaborate on the reasons for the change, except to say that Spellman would appear at the trial on a pro bono basis. Spellman could not be reached for contact Tuesday [prior to the Sept. 3rd publication date of this story],” quoting The Olympian.
From the daily Olympian September 9th:
“Court fight starts over rival spiritual teachings”
“Knight defends lawsuit against spiritual guide”
also from September 10th:
“Attorney grills Knight about ex-student”
[Ed. Note: This writer & his wife were in the courtroom and found interesting that Ms. Brenner failed to mention the testimony of a damaging witness against Ms. Weaver and the very-poised cross-examination of Ms. Knight’s Seattle-based intellectual property rights attorney in support of RSE’s Conditions of Participation form as a seminar industry standard. Putting aside all of the questions about Ramtha and Ms. Knight’s relationship with him, this case is about preserving the teachings of Ramtha and the facts were well-presented that those teachings are the intellectual property of Ms. Knight, and she has every right to protect them through the form. The other witness presented a timeline of Ms. Weaver’s integration of Ramtha’s teachings into her curriculum. Those two witnesses went right to the trial’s core, without a mention in The Olympian!]
“Testimony: Rival hurt business
“Tearful testimony wraps up
“Ramtha’s JZ Knight wins civil lawsuit”