City of Angels (Laura Paterson Memoir)

by | Mar 8, 2021 | 13 comments

Hi Paul,

For the purposes of the photo that I sent to you, it occurred to me that perhaps I should take this opportunity to introduce myself to you, since we have not yet had the opportunity of becoming acquainted.
I was opened in London in 1969, and I have been a member of Subud Los Angeles since 1975.  Presently, I am a resident of the Motion Picture and Television Country Home in Woodland Hills, a suburb of Los Angeles. Many leading members of the entertainment industry live here.  In face, Peter Mark Richman was a member of the Board of Directors for thirty years.  His widow, Helen Richman, has been living here for the past eighteen months.
MPTF also has its own in-house television station, and many leading members of the entertainment industry collaborate very closely with residents in producing original content for the station.  Until I started writing for Subud entities this past summer, I hosted my own weekly television show, ‘Raising Consciousness’, dealing with racial justice issues.
I continued to appear regularly as a guest or participant on many of these original content shows.  Jodie Foster is a strong supporter of MPTF, and she appears regularly on our television station.  Quite often I have been paired with Jodie on game shows.  All of this is to say that I have a great deal of daily contact with highly professional members of the entertainment industry.
Which in fact also was the case during thirty years of my working life, when I worked for leading entertainment attorneys and film and network studio presidents, dealing on a daily basis with people from Snoop Dogg to Peter Jennings and John Grisham.  Also, as I believe I have already mentioned, I was National Chair for Subud USA from 1998-2000.
Anyway, all of that is just to say that I am deeply and profoundly committed to SICA-USA achieving its full potential as a showcase for Subud talent. And also to say that I would be deeply honored to have my own narrative memory piece, ‘City of Angels’ included on the SICA-USA website,
Best wishes,
Motion Picture and Television Country Home.



I don’t know it yet, but we are living now in the mean streets of Los Angeles. When we arrived in the early hours of this morning the only view of the city that we could see was of millions and millions of earthbound stars spilling across the horizon. Appropriately enough for the City of Stars. We briefly glimpsed far below us, through a momentary cleavage in the hills surrounding the 134 freeway, the city lights of Los Angeles, an ocean of lights twinkling below us as if tumbled carelessly onto a jeweler’s cloth, sparkling into the distance as far as our eyes could see. The night sky was an inky jet black and the air was warm and velvety.

We were traveling east past Glendale and heading toward Highland Park, looking for our exit. Our babies had been asleep in their car seats ever since we left Carmel Valley, picking up the I5, the Golden State freeway, east of Salinas and heading south over the Tejon Pass, known forebodingly to Southern California drivers as the treacherous Grapevine. Heavily- laden tractor-trailers screamed past us in the pitch darkness of the late night and early morning hours, bearing to the teeming markets of the Los Angeles basin the abundant produce harvested in the agricultural richness of the Central Valley.

The great Central Valley, known in earlier times as the Golden Empire, provides more than half of the produce grown in the United States. This abundance of agricultural fertility is harvested by itinerant and undocumented migrant workers from Mexico. Harvested by entire families of mothers and grandmothers, children and able-bodied men, bending and stooping and picking the rich abundance of produce throughout the day under the dry remorseless heat of the burning California sun.

These migrant workers are the agents of our sustenance, and their lives are spent in ceaseless labor for the least of recompense. Proximity to their countrymen would be our point of entry for immersion into the culture and economy of the Mexican under-class of Los Angeles, and into an awareness of the social inequalities and injustices which were camouflaged by the intoxicating beauty and luminosity of the southern California landscape. My husband was driving our 1975 chartreuse green Mercury Bobcat Villager station wagon… READ MORE


Laura Paterson was born and raised in Alberta and British Columbia, Canada. In December, 1965, at the age of twenty, Laura bought a one-way ticket to London, England, thereby creating her own personal ‘Canadian invasion’. Laura remained in London for the next ten exciting years. In November, 1969, she was opened in Subud at the Hampstead, London, Subud center, by long-time Subud helper, Halimah Cooke.

Laura married fellow Subud member, Luqman Katz, in 1973 and in 1975 they moved to California. Together they raised two wonderful, amazing children, Harlinah and Hussein Katz. Later they became proud grandparents to two beautiful granddaughters. Laura’s racially and culturally diverse family reflect perfectly her lifelong commitment to and advocacy of social, racial, economic, and cultural diversity, justice, and equity.

For thirty years, Laura worked in the entertainment industry as an executive assistant to studio chiefs and entertainment law firm name partners. Her days were filled with eventful exchanges with such diverse clients as Peter Jennings, John Grisham, Peter Yarrow of ‘Peter, Paul & Mary’, Maya Angelou, and Snoop Dogg. Never was there a dull moment!

Laura now is a resident at the Motion Picture and Television Country Home (MPTF), on the Wasserman Campus in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California. MPTF has its own on-campus, full-service television studio and broadcast channel. Laura’s days now are filled playing game shows with such MPTF supporters as Jodie Foster, as well as producing and hostessing her own weekly BLM social and racial justice and equity program, ‘Raising Consciousness’.
Laura served as National Chair of Subud USA from 1998-2000, during the eight years that she lived in New York City, and was a member of the Subud New York Chelsea Center group. Laura continues to participate in her ongoing Subud activities, which now are zoom and covid-enhanced, and also continues to work on her memoir, ‘City of Angels’.


  1. A beautifully written Chapter 1, riveting and unnerving. I can’t wait for more chapters. Thank you very much, Laura Paterson.

  2. very enjoyable read……visually inducing 🙂 thank you for download PDF 🙂 look forward to reading further chapters 🙂 love —s

  3. I was laughing outloud. Great Chapter 1 and the descriptions are so vivid (and accurate!) Interesting .

  4. Great read Laura ! Your personal story of LA captures part of my life and many others who lived in LA,

  5. Congratulations, Laura! This much is terrific! Can’t wait to read it all! Love & Blessings to you always & forever!


  6. May Almighty bless and keep and thank you for sharing with us all the start of your life in Subud.

  7. After a visit to 7 circles from LA you made a detour to show me the Redwoods, my first glimpse. A native of Scotland, I was gob smacked 😳

  8. Such beautiful writing Laura! You have a gift! Wonderful to hear from you. Looking forward to more. Wishing you all success in this project. Blessings!

  9. Thank you to everyone for your very kind comments. They are immensely encouraging!
    Chapter Two will be about all of our new friends and neighbors on South Avenue 58 in Highland Park!

  10. Great read Laura I am excited to keep reading

  11. What an interesting story..Thank you Laura for sharing with us. I will be waiting to read further chapters.

  12. More, More, More!💃✨🎉

  13. Take your time, hurry up.

    I am expecting to read the next chapter.

    Namaste, Lailani


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SICA-USA, the Subud International Cultural Association is the Cultural wing of SUBUD USA.

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