Featured post

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 4

A Living Incense Link

There’s a danger when the mortal mind meets the infinite. Your mind really has problems handling a divine experience because you’ve encountered sights and ideas that do not fit into the one train of thought limit of the human mind. Your mind may break, as mine did afterwards, and your ego may put on some grandiose title, as mine did, although it didn’t do it willingly, and you may walk around for weeks in that feared weirdness we call a psychosis, and I did, although I’d rather call it a spiritual emergency, and you’ve got to figure I was an accident waiting to happen, but none of that detracts from the fact that you saw divinity with your own very eyes, as I did. Do you have anything like that set of divine visuals?

When a substance, such as LSD, or grass for that matter, is a trigger for spiritual experience, and I understand most believe it cannot be, and here again we encounter another discrepancy between popular belief and reality, you are not ready for it. You have been put there too quickly, although it might fit perfectly into your program (or it might not), be actually what you need as hard as that might be on you, and you suffer such a shock it’s all you can do to stay sane. I might say here welcome to the Path, unruled, unbounded, unpredictable, spontaneous, not a step 1, 2, 3, but I’d be getting way ahead of myself.

It wasn’t like I just dropped a couple of hits of acid on the spur of the moment, LSD 25 to be exact. I had planned the trip for months. The idea to do it came because of the effects I was experiencing from grass, which I didn’t start smoking until my senior year at university, when I was 26, although I’d tried it as a young teen a couple of times, the second time experiencing the dissociation state and getting so terrified I begged God to let me be myself again, telling Him I’d be a preacher if I woke up the next morning normal, and I did, and that’s how and why I became a Jesus freak in my teenage years. Being an English major minoring in History, I had more books to read than I could possibly read, and, not really knowing the usual effects of weed, that it makes you scattered, and having lost my terror of the drug, what I had for any and every substance on account of that dissociation experience, I thought grass might help me to sit and read as long as I needed to, since I remembered it did give me an incredible focus, albeit so remote from the world, and so I asked a friend, whom I knew smoked, to give me a joint. I smoked it and read Huckleberry Finn in one sitting, although it took some hours, hitting two or three tokes on that joint when the effects began to wane. I managed to complete my coursework that way.

As I explain in an essay/nonfiction narrative entitled “The Evidence of Man”, during my undergraduate years I did a lot of lucid dream and out of body exploration, the former to a degree I was a god in dream more or less, until I got killed, stabbed in the heart, and then I had a near death experience, but that’s a story wound round this one wound told better in the aforementioned article. Having had that opening with death, however, in the heart to be exact, enabled me to experience my grandfather’s death, a year or so later, of a heart attack a couple of weeks before it happened where it happened and how it happened. I mean I was inside him me myself, though of course my body wasn’t there, with my thoughts and feelings, hearing/seeing and feeling his plus what his external senses were experiencing—he was building a barbed wire fence on a neighbor’s property—, though much more remotely than I was experiencing his inner field. I call that inner body time travel, and like a lot of things we think technology will give us the means to do one day, consciousness already has if we could but realize it. While that experience wasn’t the result of a substance and wasn’t planned and took me completely by surprise, and nor is it anything I’ve been able to experience again, it’s been a fountain in what it’s shown to me of reality: many, many things if you can get the picture. I’m telling the story here to show how open I was before that LSD trip, open in my inner consciousness.

On the level of normality, it would bear mentioning that I’d undergone a year of psychoanalysis as an undergrad, where I’d learned of my mother’s sexual abuse of me. My doctor, a psychiatrist, would not talk about anything paranormal, lucid dreams and O.B.Es. included, especially wouldn’t talk about such things as my mom’s phantom lover before my sister and I were born or my imaginary playmate Chevy as a baby and toddler, who turned out to be the same entity had sex with my mom, was what the ancients Greeks called the family daemon, what we call a demon (that future discovery being another story lost to this present one, but it’s entered the spiral), my doctor being the devout atheist and materialist she was. She focused solely on my thoughts and feelings in regards to the material field, examining a dream every now and then in that Freudian way that sees only what it wants to see, but, being such a paranormal person, that was what the doctor ordered. It did help.

I’ve described to you my set for that acid trip, so you might not wonder so much at me going over the top. Like I said, the purpose of the trip was to find God. I was an atheist up until that trip, as I’ve also said, but I was a searching one. The metaphysical experiences I was having were too big for atheism, for reductionist materialism, and I was burning with that question. I figured, since LSD was so much stronger of a psychedelic than pot, that I might get my question answered. I had no idea.

My setting was not mismatched with my set. I’d arranged to do it on my 27th birthday, (1988), another key ingredient of my set if you know how open we are on our birthday, at my sister’s cabin on Spyrock Mountain in Northern California, called that because of a giant rock halfway up the mountain with American Indian markings on it. She lived in a small community of pot growers and smokers, most of whom were from our hometown of Houston, Texas, where I was traveling from in my black Datsun diesel king cab pickup truck that features on other occasions in my spiritual adventures, although here it was only a taxi to and not one during. On that fateful day she decided she was busy and turned me over to David and Joelle, a couple who were part of my sister’s group, he being the founding member of the community, if it could really be called that so loosely put together it was, she being a hippie moving through there on mushrooms one night trapped, as she described it, in another dimension. I’m sure it was the dissociation state. David took her into his trailer and talked her down, and they stayed together after that. Being around 10 years my senior and quite experienced with tripping, they were my minders. I wouldn’t call them guides. I could actually call him a few bad names.

I dosed with them in the late morning, and when the effects began to hit I wandered off on my own down a dry creek bed that meandered down the mountain. It was bordered on both banks by an unkempt forest and strewn with big grey boulders here and there that were contrasted by the small stones and pebbles of many colors on the dry bottom of the stream, dull now because there was no water to make them shine. Jake, David’s German Shepherd, was close on my heels. Dogs just know. When you trip it’s like you’re a little child again so fresh and alive the world is in that delightful but also frightful way that gives everything you see almost a depth of personhood, and which you feel, fear or joy, depends on the same things that make a child cry or laugh, and you can go from one to the other in the drop of a hat.

A good dog, the kind that watches and protects, of the gentle dogs that is, will almost always prefer the company of a child, even over their master’s presence—well, up to a point: a power-grabbing toddler will send a good dog to their master’s side for protection. Jake knew something was up with me kid-like, as this was my first trip, and I was noticeably tripping, the others no. For me it was so natural his coming with me, and it made me feel very safe because, as a toddler, according to those who were there at the time, I was a wild child hard to handle, and you would not wonder why, did not like staying indoors, and no one wanted to just follow me around the yard for hours on end, but we had a good dog, Buckshot, a Collie Shepard mix whose parents were army dogs, and he babysat me I kid you not. There was no fence, and it was a very big yard, and I remember, when I got close to crossing the border of the yard, or on the verge of doing something that made him feel I was in danger, he’d hunker his head down and look at me with compelling eyes and make this funny combination of whines, low growls and half barks to get me to obey him, and if I didn’t, he’d gently take my little hand in his mouth and lead me back towards the house.

At any rate, to make a long story short, I speak dog, what Jake could sense in the ambience of my tripping self, and I was a toddler once again, on the hunt for this and that and whatnot, being babysat by my Buckshot. Three images organize my memory of that passage down the creek bed. The first sees me look back at my entrance into the stream’s world, having entered its bed from the thin strip of forest on the other side of which is the yard of whomever’s property we were on. I don’t think it was David’s. The feeling of being enclosed in nature and closed off from the human world dominated my inner senses, not just my outer. I was looking back upon a large, tall stone formation that sat right in the middle of the stream, and it struck me how, when there was the flow of water in winter, the current would get split in two right there, creating I imagined an interesting effect of the combination of sight and sound. Looking at the top of the formation, I noticed how flat it was, worn down even in the center, as though it was a chair of sorts. With an exclamation point, my surmise saw a seat a hundred years old or more, where an old native American sage must’ve sat and contemplated, taking advantage of the strange effects of sight and sound and the interruption in the flow of the stream’s energy, perhaps tapping into it even. Although it was a human element, or would be if that were indeed the case and it was an old sitting spot, I remained in my inner and outer senses enclosed in nature and unbothered by man.

The second sight was a bona fide hallucination. I’d crawled into a little crevice made by large boulders piled together, against Jake’s wishes, who was nervously waiting just outside, the small opening and passage too tight for his comfort. Inside there was a very tiny cave of sorts, just big enough to stoop in. In the ‘wall’ I was facing, there was an indention in the rock that formed something like a deep shelf. Inside was a large flat stone that I stared at, and as I stared there slowly appeared the biggest and most beautifully decorated rattlesnake I’d ever seen either in waking life or in dream, animated to be larger than life. It was coiled with head raised, looking at me. I had more or less willed it there, remembering a scene from the film The Trial of Billy Jack, where he goes into a cave of rattlesnakes and meets his shadow brother. Billy Jack was my hero as a very young teen, before Jesus replaced him. The original movie, Billy Jack, has been a big and positive influence upon my life, despite how hokey it appears today and the violence of the main character, who was actually involved in trying to overcome it. There in that crevice on acid, I felt also to be involved in Billy Jack’s quest, seeking to heal my nature, and the snake bore witness to that, although it wouldn’t be till the next day that the idea would take on a concrete form. Here it entered my conscious mind, coming as it did from inside me. It was there a few seconds, breathing and alive, with eyes like diamonds on fire, and then it was gone, both the snake and sense of healing.

In the third organizing image, I’ve made my way some distance down the mountain, how far I’m not sure, and I’m standing on a large rock where the stream borders the busy and groomed world of us, a few trees standing around not able to hold back the tide of  the sights and sounds of man entering into the stream’s enclosed world. The ground declines steeply from that point, how far I don’t know, because it was where I left the stream and joined back with David and Joelle. Since the crevice, the world of symbol had superseded the world of visible sight, and I was undergoing what felt to be a process of being born anew. Standing on that rock I was seized with the impulse to remove my shirt, which was an OD green jungle fatigue top of the Vietnam era, and my dog tags, which I yet wore on occasion being still very attached to being a soldier, even after five years, and I hurled both as far as I could down the stream.

The act symbolized letting go of my old identity and left me shirtless. I then walked to the nearby road, where David and Joelle were talking to a man, obviously a part of the mountain’s alternative lifestyle, but nonetheless, realizing how odd it must be to see a grown man walking shirtless, I mentioned how hot the whether was, and it wasn’t. David, as though I were a child talking the way kids do about this and that so seriously, and this and that are really something else, and they are just talking to sound bigger than they are, cut me off and told the man I was tripping, and it was my first time. He gave me that knowing look, the one that says don’t take anything I do or say seriously, the look you give to people who are tripping. The three had a good laugh, and I felt such the misunderstood child.

We went back to their trailer house, the evening rapidly turning towards night. How time had passed so quickly I had no idea, and David stopped me before we went inside. “Do you want another hit? I should tell you that a night trip is very different from a day one, very different. It could turn into a bad trip if you’re not careful.”

Psilocybin mushrooms grew wild in the cow pastures that bordered the behinds of Sagemont, the suburbs I grew up in from eleven to adulthood. So many kids ate them we had like a mini Woodstock environment going on on the sidelines of our growing up. My big sister Gwen was part of that crowd, but I never ate shrooms on account of my bad trip from grass I’ve mentioned previously, figuring if grass was that bad, shrooms would be ten times worse. One kid from that crowd, an eighth grader, blew part of his head off with a shotgun while on shrooms he’d gathered from the fields. This was a major event in my junior high school, George A. Thompson Intermediate. And it was so very sad. My choir teacher, who had also been his, told the story of going to the house, how the mother was in a state of shock, how she felt his presence still, like he wanted to say he was sorry, how she’d walked in and saw his brains scattered on the wall, the gun rigged with wire and string sitting there like an angel of death. The story was used to warn us of the danger of mushrooms, of course, and it had its desired effect on many, but the fields were still ripe for the picking, and they begged the question of what’s out there, and, despite the dangers, a lot of kids wanted that question answered. As I see it now, it wasn’t so much the shrooms that were dangerous; it was the ignorance of the kids who ate them and the adults who tried to stop them, the one not understanding the magnitude of tripping, how it’s not for everyone and especially not for the unprepared and the too young, and the latter not understanding a need, in a suburban world that boxed reality into a squeeze hole, to visit the forbidden zones.

On the mountain, I couldn’t see how a bad trip could come out of such a wonderfully deep and symbolic day, and I didn’t want the effects to end, waning, as they were in sync with the sun, which was going down, and so without much hesitation, I took a second hit, and we went inside. We smoked some grass, and I waited to peak again, the couple of hours or so of a trip when the effects are at their height. Earlier, when I took the first trip, David had explained that smoking grass while tripping produced a different trip than if you didn’t smoke, and I didn’t really appreciate that at the time, nor that we were smoking mountain grown skunk. It was quickly dark, and, after an hour or so of waiting, the peak reappeared.

He turned down the lights and put on some Indian music, and with the dimness and sound of the sitar, it occurred to me to lay down and close my eyes. I don’t know how long I’d been laying down—I seem to remember it being almost instantaneous—, but suddenly the scene of the trailer, which I was seeing with that other vision, the strange one that can see with the eyes closed while you’re between waking and sleeping, first cracked and then shattered into many pieces, like a windshield on a car. I found myself, as I described earlier, flying over a thought grid that stretched to infinity in every direction, one made up of thought cubicles, as I experienced them at the time, coming to call them houses later on, as I’ve said, and I was flying over what I knew to be the Buddhist cubicle. The forms I saw down below were in miniature, shaped out of the fantastic, a shock to my vision. I recognized what looked like the forms of stupas, what’s on the top of many a Buddhist temple, and with an instantaneous apprehension without thought I knew that it was here the forms and thought of Buddhism came from. The beings in that well of a world were not something I could firmly apprehend, are not even forms I can remember, as they were so foreign to my vision I couldn’t really see them in the sense of making any sense out of what I saw. I just knew they were alive and divine.

But as captivating as it was, the scene below me was pale in comparison to the peace and bliss I had become, which the fact that I was flying did not abrogate, and with that apprehension without thought, I knew this to be some semblance of Buddha consciousness. Just as that apprehension came, I flew over the border of the Buddha cubical and over the cubicle of Christianity, and I’m calling it that because the forms of the religion were there, not because it wore any label on itself or in my mind as such, and, if surprised you can be in such a state of completeness, I was surprised to find that the consciousness there was identical to the Buddha consciousness, why they were side by side, but there was one subtle difference, but to call it the presence of fear wouldn’t be exactly what it was, since it wasn’t discordant with the bliss and peace, or I should say, it didn’t wipe those away. It came from a sort of pole in the middle of the Christian cubicle, what the beings there worshiped, or worshipped around, but what they also didn’t understand, because it was incompatible with the compassion of that realm, and the closest word I can use to describe it is wrath, and all this, again, did not come in a train of worded thought but arose instantaneously upon seeing inside that cubicle that held the forms of Christianity.

I saw places inside where the major figures of Christianity resided, like little rectangles or such, all this what I might call a figurementation, to make up a word so to describe something indescribable, and I saw that in the Christ one Christ was there, and it bears mentioning there was no sign of a cross at all, but in the Antichrist place, he wasn’t there yet. It might be hard to picture, but his place was as integral as Christ’s, I mean was a part of the house, and that place was empty. The transition from bliss and peace to an almost abject terror happened immediately upon realizing I could fill that place, not in the sense that I wanted to, but in the sense that I couldn’t help but fill it no matter how much I didn’t want to, what would be unavoidable destiny, what was one hell of a thought, an exaggeration of LSD, not the wordless kind of all-knowing thought but a thought thought, what happens in narrow reality, what happens when that is in the way, as in that exclamation point of sudden terror I’d come down to the level of our mind, and I fell towards that vacant spot in a swoon of darkness, coming back to the forms of this world and to the living room of the trailer house before I arrived down inside, rushing back to the scene in the trailer and jerking up into a sitting position, making sure to hold my eyes wide open so not to ‘leave’ again.

I was then hit with a rush of images of many past lives, something I didn’t believe in until that moment, and the terror of possibly being the Antichrist left me as suddenly as it had come, and I saw the nature of my soul, which was not antichrist in the least—another thing I didn’t believe in until then, my immortal soul. The images rushed past my mind’s eye as I looked upon the external scene, and I held my past lives in my view, what seemed like all of them as impossible as that sounds to hold in one’s mind at once, not those lives in detail but as indexes of things I felt could open if I put my attention there, like those cubicles were indexes to the divine realms, and I stood up and started saying that I was the illustrated man (the book of that name obviously had made an impression on me), the experiencer, the traveler, the explorer, the scout, the pathfinder, meaning my soul not ego Donny, and I had this vivid feeling-toned living image of going down into a long and dangerous crawl space of many twists and turns, incredibly remote, into a chamber far, far from the surface, feeling that by doing so I’d extended the human range. This I saw as the function of my soul. 

It seems I babbled some about my past lives and what I’d just seen, the houses of divinity, whereupon David laid back on his sofa, put on a pair of mirrored sunglasses, put his hands behind his head and put on a self-satisfied ‘got you in checkmate’ smile, and he looked at me like I imagined at the time Charles Manson might’ve looked at a prospective disciple and said, “Give me the keys to your truck and all your money,” and those were his exact words.

Jerusalem,
what makes that city special?
Can we call the Earth?
Can we stand and sing?
I think there it’s more potent.

I doesn’t belong to the Jews.It’s just a century old,
the Palestine Mandate,
where Jews flocked to Zion.
I mean Palestine.

We’d need to rewrite the history books.
Jews gave that city its name
a good 3000 years ago,
at least.
Jews is the capitol of Jerusalem, period.

And you got a book
put Mohammad in the sky from there.
What a holy place for Jews
and Palestinians,
and the Arab world,
and all of Islam.
What do we do with that?

We come together.
We go to school.
Like everybody needs to go to school,
the Jews to learn Palestinian,
the Palestinian the nation of Israel.
The importance stresses the Earth.
We can’t do without it.
It’s vitally important.
The importance can’t be stressed enough.

Instead everybody’s fighting.
There’s no way to stop them.
This stands to reason.
It’s all we see.
Can you tell me how to stop it?
I think we’d need to recognize the State of Israel,
the whole human race.

We do this first.
Recognize their right to the land?
And we have the State of Israel.
That’s who governs it.
Where do we jump off the cliff?

Here take the bike it’s so much calling me.
You had your soul housed in time.
It didn’t work.
There was things about it screwy,
between Jerusalem and Palestine for example.
Oh Lord I’m a she wolf.
Let’s murder babies.
Let’s put our heads on the chopping block.

You’re not gonna get Israel that way.
Do we blame their foreign policy?
It’s Israel or nothin’.
You mean the State of Israel would have to change?
Like become Palestinian lovers.
It’s a shortcut for humanity.
See what I mean?

I think Jewish identity’s exclusive.
How do you change it
and not give it away?
Can Jews fall in love with humanity?
Put that first on their chopping block
so far,
speaking of the genesis of the People.
Jewish identity human identity,
and human identity wins out,
how to get an Orthodox Jew to do that?

It’s here we vie for change.
Then the State of Israel will live in peace.
There’s no other way around it,
a lover of humanity all Jews
living in the Israeli state.
And then you have peace on earth
in a matter of months.
No, between Jews and Palestinians
and the rest of the Arab world.
It will be an example for all mankind.

How do we add this to the Torah?
You’re strong enough
Kabbalah,
you just have to shed orthodoxy and go deeper.
No constraints
on your inner investigation.
Keep goin’ until you find One,
until you find the whole.

Hashem’s there
as a filter.
You have to get bigger than that.
That’s not blasphemy.
That’s the organization of your religion
around soul lines.
It brings your religion to its fullness.
It’s coming
to all mankind.
It’s here
on this page.

I’ve just given you the means to change.
How about it Rabbi?
Can you get any bigger
in the land of Israel?
A precision strike
right where you meet God,
and all the Law can do is catch up.
It’s been surpassed.

We we’re gonna communicate
a Stuchbery.
That’s the primary school of God.
It got engraved in stone,
and no one got out of fifth grade.
Now we’re in New York,
really livin’ it up
in exclusivity.
Okay find God
on your soul ground.

The whole thing has evolved.
I think this is where religions go
if we let them evolve,
any religion,
if it comes from God.
They get bigger all the time,
bigger as in substance,
inner strength.
You got that Judaism?
It’s here.

Now get your book in order.
You’re about to get grand slammed,
and we talk to the poet.
Do we just keep doin’ this?
He’s your
place you see the whole,
from the university of life.
Glory hallelujah amen,
how about it Rabbi,
a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict?
Not two states,
one complete Israel.

And a few crack up go over it.
You have the Talmud use in the garage,
in a sentence.
Owf!—
a humanity teacher.
She never kept these regarding
flow existentialism.
God almighty,
they’re Jewish.
You have the performance
of a Jew last life.
It really get complicated,
all this off the cuff,
the general meat of things.

Wow, I’m sorry,
should’ve kept my mouth shut.
Can we quote the rabbi?
As overall things were happening to blood pressure.
I forgot to prepare.
You learn how
right here, hello,
a Jewish poem.

I like the truth.
Alright Edmund,
we’ve already stated it a couple of times.
Everybody that’s the truth.
It has to do with what’s goin’ on,
not made up truth.
Hey, that’s happenin’.
And who brings it up?
An alien,
usually some outcast involved in his world.
Reside in this joy.
Reside in peace.
I love you.

The origin of God,
how the One handles science.
Bake this bread.
I’m activity center.
So I found the Leaves of Grass,
a good many.
Just put them in,
in that tightrope on life.

Hey man,
I will only say now
it’s something we can work with.
Thank you Jewish field speaker.
Thank you pot darlin’.
Shut up.
I was only tryin’ to help.
Something’s broken.
And we’ve reached a limit.
Gotta sleep more wake up again and write more.

This is the anti-buy,
a shopper’s guide,
a holistic reality.
You’d think it was the anti-sleeping tablet,
as much sleep as I’ve got.
A Jewish review say it friendly:
rose to the surface
the person that time forgot,
and I’ll hook you later.
People
can read it
tomorrow,
and also at this point,
in New York today.
Oh my goodness vocabulary,
a double speaker, you know?

Welcome to the land of Israel.
It’s gold you grew up.
It’s the space age race.
It’s all these great things they can do,
if humanity accepts them,
if they accept humanity.
It’s written in the stars.
Come on let’s go.

You’re allowed
to be Jewish,
definitely.
That’s the title of the book.
Control me Houston,
I love the Jews.
I love them very much.

There’s the hero’s journey.
It’s the path I’ve been on.
It’s where I find myself.
I’m a lover of little boys,
and that’s now in their best interest.
It really is.
And you know the part that bites,
Feverton,
it’s not a part of this anymore.
There’s his hand in mine,
and you bring poetry letters to a boy.
Number one he’s my grandson,
and that’s my job to take care of him,
and I love my job.
I do love my job.

You know holism holds his hand,
and we put that on life, the universe, and everything,
and you’ve encountered reality.
You really have,
and there’s no other way around the universe.
There really isn’t.
Can you hear me Judaism?
Can you hear me?
Let’s go buy Jerusalem,
and we’re a holistic Jew.
And we’re a holistic Jew.

Next post:

Chapter 5
A New Car, a New Character, a New Interpretation

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 11

When you see Supermind, sit down without interruptions. This help us. And things sat at Egypt, quite a chart, occult seat. Get the government out of there. Photo by me.

Now What About the Bathroom City Toy?

These were poems posted at the hunger strike camp in Jerusalem, outside Jaffa Gate. One or more of them were posted at the top of Mt. Sinai and around the Great Pyramid in Egypt. I don’t remember which ones.

It happened as soon as I plopped down on my bed in my efficiency there at Hyde Park Apartments in the Montrose district of Houston. The whole room erupted in vision. I was watching a storm at sea, and everything was purple, the sky, the mounting waves, the ocean. Thunder and lightning punctuated the scene, and the lightning too was a shade of purple. A woman on a white stallion was looking at me kindly, the horse expertly riding the storm under her body commands. She was dressed in the buckskins of a male American Indian warrior. And she smiled. As I looked into her eyes I was suddenly seeing through the eyes of innumerable individuals, and how can I describe this? They were a single person, all those beings, not entities in union sharing an identity and field of consciousness, but one individual that existed as a multitude. Each was a specific personality type, or character, as this rider of the storm was, and each was strikingly different from the one on either side, as it were as though they were all in a curved line, or some such figure, facing out. That vision within a vision, of seeing through multiple beings, multiple poles of experience at the same time, lasted only a second or so, but I saw. Then I was looking at the woman again, and she said, not exactly, but this is close, “Nirvana expresses itself through the forms.” And the vision ended. And my world fell back into place. I was okay. Meaning refilled my room.

I could now go on, live my life and with enthusiasm, the luckiest man in the world because I had seen what I saw: the world is a meaningful expression of Nirvana, that being for me at that time a name I used for Reality, Buddhism being my mode of study  back then. I called that person that had multiple selves the Nirvana people, for the same reason. Once I took up the study of Sri Aurobindo’s yoga, I was able to connect the dots and realize that stupendous being was a representation of the Supermind, it being one entity expressing itself in innumerable distinct personalities so to ride the universe. It also came to me in the study of his yoga that was where I was going as the force of kundalini began to rocket up the base of my spine during that momentary experience of enlightenment described in the last chapter, and I was headed back up there where I wanted to be, as he says that you normally go to Supermind on a thin edge of existence, side by side with extinction, the exit out of cosmic existence, but instead of leaving, you go into your real Self, and I’ve put into my own words his teachings. Stupid me, I stopped myself, not understanding I was returning where I had done that intense sadhana to return to. Now, a couple of weeks later, with that woman on the horse, I saw the nature of myself on high, the aspect of Supermind that rides me, and thus my essential nature, I a rider of storms, in cross sympathy with the two sexes we wear, comfortable and at home a stranger in a strange land. It does fit me well, as I’m a homemaker, after being an adventure traveler and a Green Beret, and I live in India as an Indian a White man, and one storm after another hits our house, some carrying the flesh of death, and I, used to it, unperturbed for the most part, just continue.

At Krishna’s in Safed, Israel, about four years later, I was basking in warm sunshine. It wasn’t that he was impressed with those two over the top spiritual experiences I described to him—I don’t think he really grasped them. He was purposely providing a safe space for someone being outcast to feel the support of community. I can’t tell you how much that helps, even if it’s only a heartfelt hello or a bright smile you give such a person. It makes our day. Here, it was healing my wounds. He said it was movie night, and that David the Sefirot artist and his wife were coming over to watch Mrs. Doubtfire with us, the film he’d chosen for the evening. Funny that film, and funny that very open man. I kind of think the universe chose the film, but I suspect David was showing his support too, not necessarily, like I said, for me personally but for the person being outcast. It was lovely evening. To be indoors, to be in polite company, wow, what a boon. Thank you Krishna, and thank you David and your wife. You are wonderful.

I don’t think I’d planned to leave Safed that next morning, although I was planning to go soon. After leaving Krishna’s refreshed, taken care of, on a high note, I encountered the crowd I initially was involved with in Safed, the one Hen-ya and Zeke, were a part of. Actually, I only ran into Ger and the little boy in the group, and they were about to go on another weekend day trip to some place or another interesting not too far away. I’d gone on two of those excursions myself, one to that moshav ‘dinner in the barn affair’ I told you about, but I’d had a falling out with the group over my attraction to that little boy, which manifested a bit like the behavior of a male dog not able to stay away from a girl dog in heat. I mean he’s right there as close to her as dogly possible. The boy didn’t mind the attention, although he wasn’t the type of kid that liked attention to his genitals. It was just something that alarmed the females and caused Hen-ya to tell me, a couple of days before the morning I’m at now in the story, that she wanted nothing more to do with me, period. When I informed her of Ger’s behavior with the boy’s fourteen-year-old sister, she became angry and told me that I was lying. Even though it was true, it was illegitimate of me to implicate him so to take some heat off me.

As I watched her walk away from me, I remembered her telling me some days before that she’d seen God in her room, and when she said it she giggled like a naughty child, and she proclaimed there was no longer any need to meditate or do anything like that, as if her vision, which she wouldn’t describe to me other than to say it was a bright light that was ‘God’, was the sign she’d achieved the goal of the spiritual path, and so it’s no surprise her way of dealing with me was to tell me she would no longer be my friend. No integral understanding there, no heartfelt compassion, no sign she’d seen God with the essence of her vision of self and world. Whatever she meant by seeing God, it was not a light that enlightened her.

Ger and the girl were quite the spectacle. Often in those first days after my arrival in Safed, when we were a group together, before I turned more towards the crowd at the art studio, Ger and I would be alone with the kids, and they would be lost in each other, or what was really going on, she using him as her sexual pedestal, her exploratory tool, they kissing and feeling of one another, passionately, she often getting on top of him and straddling him, he opening his legs so they could be genital to genital, both fully dressed though, and they dry humping each other, her so hot to her awakened sexuality you thought she’d catch fire. I would be nearby with the boy massaging him everywhere but where I wanted to and where he didn’t want me to, or I’d be doing whatever the boy wanted to do so to keep his attention. It was really in the atmosphere, their sex. We don’t know to take that into account in the pedophile’s wrong.

Ger was about 27 or so, and his name is the Hebrew name for stranger, and it’s part of the Law to treat a ger kindly, and so his name gave him special treatment. Zeke told me that was the type of non-Jew most welcome among Jews. I don’t know really why. Zeke was never judgmental or cross about me being with the boy, but he did study it, warned me the others didn’t like my focus on the boy. Zeke did not know about Ger and the girl. Only the boy and I saw that. He did, however, tell me the mother was a sharlila, the word I believe he used, and that people looked down on her. Ger had sex with the mother, and so that sealed his in with the family, as there was no father, just the mother and her two children.

However she was with men, an easy woman or what, or really, a contemporary New York City girl (girl—she was in her late thirties I believe), she was straight up with her son and his package. Everyone had been who’d been in close caretaking roles with him in his infancy and toddler years. No one messed with his thing. He was now 7, and the ego was in full swing, old enough to keep people off his privates because that’s they way he’d been taught, that they were private, his, not even his mom’s or dad’s. Here’s some useful knowledge: if you don’t play with your baby boy’s mailbox in any way, shape or form, don’t even open it in the attitude, meaning wash and heal it holding it away from you in your mind and in your own genitals, not in a fearful or morally indignant manner, which has its own consequences, but respectful of the boy’s privacy, and if no one fiddles with it other than other little kids, which is no problem here, then that boy will say no to some adult or near adult who wants to play with it or worse as the kid grows up. Someone can still get past those defenses, as it’s not so hard to get into a kid’s pants, but those defenses will still be up, be a barrier to someone trying to get some handful or more out of them. This boy was such a boy, strong in his strongbox, because his mother had been careful with him and it. It’s usually the mother who has the most say here, if she is the primary caretaker. Sometimes, though it’s the dad or a close relative.

If, on the other hand, a mom or somebody caretaking close fooled with it, twitched it up and down, or outright played with it some, in a baby’s first three years of life or so, then they will be open down there and give a great big yes to adults that want some of that. If it didn’t reach a certain level of intensity, didn’t go overboard, then the boy will become  a man somewhat crazy about women, probably disrespectful towards them, and if the mom’s, big sister’s, aunt’s, or grandmother’s hand got carried away often, he’ll become a sexual harasser or quite possibly a rapist. Can you see the equation? Judging from the reports worldwide of men sexually harassing women, raping them, it would seem there’s a pandemic of women into their baby boy’s stuff. When’s Me Too going to examine itself? Here’s the line: if the woman gave that infant boy orgasms, or played with it frequently in an overtly sexual way, to erection and beyond, or any adult did that at that tender age, then the kid will grow up to be a pedophile if he stays on course for that, and there’s a demon attached to him from birth, the same one who got the woman, or whomever, to mess with him, making sure that boy stays on course. Do you have any idea what I just showed you?

For his part, Ger was only mildly bothered by me focusing on the boy, and we talked about it, as we did about what was going on with he and the girl, he saying, not without some truth, that he was only giving the girl what she wanted and that he wouldn’t have actual intercourse with her. I did not, however, see him the most patient and trustworthy teacher there. In the course of our conversation about my attraction to little boys, I told him about my mom giving me fellatio as a baby and toddler. He was not a coarse or macho man, was quite gentle and sensitive actually, his passion with the young girl notwithstanding, was someone I felt okay to talk to. He told me that, once, listening to a radio talk show in his native Norway, he heard a young mother talk about her infant son’s penis, how it would become erect, and she wanted to suck it. The radio host, he said, got quite alarmed and told her not to do that. I looked at that story as showing the tip of an iceberg, not only in Norway but in humanity, and how alarmed would you be to know it is? Meaning more mothers than anybody would believe suck that little thing, and it made me feel less weird about that thing happening to me.

I ran into Ger and the boy after I left Krishna’s. They were about to leave on a day trip somewhere. Ger told me he felt bad about how things worked out, or I think he did. Maybe it was just the way he looked at me, sadly. The boy was doing something boyish as the two waited; you how boys don’t just stand there. He looked at me briefly, with those big, brown eyes of his, and I was searching that look for something to do with wanting me to come too. I was infatuated. He was just a boy. I couldn’t see a hint of me in his eyes. Instead of speaking to me, he asked Ger when they were going. I think it was at that very moment I decided to leave, and I did. I had my stuff with me, a backpack, and I went to the out road so to hitchhike to Tel Aviv, which was about half the length of Israel from there. I’d just been wined and dined by Krishna, validated and stood by, but that was yesterday. What did you do for me today God? My boy had rejected me. That was all that mattered. It was June 4th, 1995, my 34th birthday.

But God is faithful, even to boy lovers, or really, still loves and shows them that love, despite their mooning over boys. As I left I was also carrying the confusing rejection of me of all those young, Jewish Americans. I deserved it you’d say, or I’d imagine you would, and that even Atheists would, the oneness crowed too (that oneness crowd isn’t), but God doesn’t see it that way, and I mean by God the Supreme, just to make it clear I’m not talking about a particular God. I will always have trouble getting this point across, as most ideas of God have Him hate you, or at least turn His back on you, if you sin, that point being God loves, period. I’ve explained before that the crowd at the art studio weren’t rejecting me because of my love for boys, or predatory behavior I believe it’s called today, as that point never came up with them; they were rejecting me because I wasn’t Jewish bottom line, although that rejection had a lot to do with the strength of my spirituality, but if I’d been Jewish that strength wouldn’t been a point of interest among them instead one on which to exclude me. It’s always possible Hen-ya or Zeke talked to someone from the studio crowd about my pederasty, to call more what it’s more truly called, or has been called down through the ages (we are strangers I know), and so you can’t scientifically rule that out, but it’s not probable given there were no go-betweens between the two groups, no friends in this group that also had friends in that one. And besides, neither of those two, despite their other failings, were gossips, and neither were Ger and the mother.

There’s one thing I haven’t mentioned about leaving Safed, something that ended up eclipsing that boy it was so big, had God in it if you want to know the truth. Out of nowhere had come the strong desire for a chocolate croissant, probably because of the comfort it would provide; we are so comfort food bound when it comes to being depressed about something. The desire was right there in the front of my desire soul, hitching down to Tel Aviv. You don’t hitch in Israel with your thumb. You hitch by reaching your arm out as a vehicle goes by and pointing with your index and middle finger down to the road, maybe shaking it up and down, maybe not, and it’s easy to get picked up in Israel, probably because a lot of the hitchers were soldiers on their way home from duty, and everybody but the orthodox have to serve. I was halfway to my destination when I got dropped off at a desolate spot. “Damn,” I thought, “I’ll never get a ride here.” I looked at my surroundings, for the best place to hitch from, and I saw a light pole that hadn’t been completed yet at the best spot. It only reached about waist high, and it had a flat top. I couldn’t believe my eyes. I literally rubbed them. On it was sitting a fresh chocolate croissant with a single small bite taken out of it. Now, I’d been outside awhile, homeless, and that bite didn’t mean a thing. I snatched that croissant up and ate it. When I finished a car came by and picked me up on my signal. I sat in the front seat, and the driver shared a bag of fresh fruit with me, and it was wet and cool and delicious. He was so kind.

I got to the city and jumped out of the car, landing on both feet, meaning I quickly got a means to eat. From past experience, I knew the restaurants on the street opposite the promenade hired as day labor bussers (the slang for bussing tables was something like pic-a-lo) and dishwashers, and the down and out tourist manned those day jobs a lot. You got paid with a meal at the end of your shift if it were only during the lunch or dinner rush, with a some shekels too if it were all day. Israel is a traveling experience like no other. Anyway, I got into a dishwasher’s little world, the plates coming in still half full of food, and not just any food, fired shrimp, my favorite food, and cheesecake, my favorite desert. I was washing and eating. In my mind, it was a feast fit for a king, but the waiters there didn’t want me to do that. I think I was eating a partially eaten piece of cheesecake when about three or so came in and stopped me, but not rudely or meanly. They were actually concerned, and a bit tickled at the same time, maybe at my long-haired and bearded appearance or at my unabashed delight at the food, but it was probably both, and they asked how long it’d been since I’d eaten. I explained I’d not been eating much, but I did have dinner the night before. One waiter took me by the hand and led me to a table out on the main floor, and they served me a wonderful meal, and I really, really enjoyed that meal, a memorable meal in this table of a lifetime, and then I went back to the dishes. Happy birthday. Thank you God, and thank you people. People can be so wonderful, you know? This is knowledge of God.

Along that stretch of restaurants and cafes across the street from the promenade in Tel Aviv was The Art Cafe, a very striking business front with colorful art on it. Inside it was crammed with framed paintings, and the painter could be seen, back then at least, busy with his latest painting right there in the cafe, who was also the owner of the cafe and its only employee. It was a small place, but there were several tables and a feeling of depth, as in size, once you got inside. I was drawn to the place looking over at it a lot as I left my sleeping place on the beach coming back and forth from day labor, which wasn’t in the restaurants but in construction. My new group of friends were the down and out tourist crowd haunting the beach in those days, all non-Jews except for the bright and shiny de factor leader of the group, a very young man with long, blond hair down past his shoulders and blue eyes from The Netherlands, de facto because he could speak Hebrew and knew the limits of tolerance, or we thought he did. He didn’t.

The Art Cafe drew me, and soon I was there watching the man paint after I got off work. There was no distinction, that I could feel at least, being made under the water of Jewishness or non, and that seemed pretty characteristic of my experience of Tel Aviv, but it would be too early to ascribe the religious racism I was experiencing in Israel to only the religious. At the time, his stuff struck me as only an attempt at art—after all, he couldn’t make it as an artist and had to have a coffee shop, and there were so many paintings, felt like a dime a dozen. Funny the common blinds. I’ll let my muse interpret his work though, through its lens of today: “Why don’t you just consider the width of the creativity? Draw another line across it. It was very beautiful.” He’d paint a background any manner of ways, one solid color, a color of many shades, or of many colors, any manner of shapes, on which he’d “paint paint onto, little dabs of brushstrokes here and there, let it stand up, let it stand out, on which he would ascribe meaning with that dabbing.”

I convinced him to host a “Noise From the Innerwho” there at his cafe, about two weeks after my arrival, which I put on with my beach friends, a sandy, disheveled handful of people, but loyal friends, and we had to be to one another; we were all we had. He made a little, long, rectangular painting for the bottom of the flyer, but unfortunately I don’t have a copy for you now. One published local poet showed up, with his small entourage, a middle-aged man whose style of dress spoke of university and ordinariness. He was quite snobbish, though, once he heard my poetry, had this little smile on his face that said something like, “That’s what I though, hippie, you don’t write poetry.” I felt the same way about his after hearing his, and reading his he was as arrogant as I reading mine, and as blind to that ego swelling as I. Funny the poetry sphere.

I was carried over to Auroville from Israel on my knee. I got put on it just before I left Safed, some months before I left the country. Those small two boys I told you about, whom I was teaching meditation and pranayama to, who were around 11, well, it was a knee thing with them, although you’d call it the predator. I showed them, manually, like really hands on, the cross-legged position I used to do the deep breathing exercises, one that made it easier to draw up the perineum, that place between the anus and genitals, but you had to have one heel directly on the perineum applying pressure, the other one directly underneath, quite an exact position and quite a stretch to make. In putting their heels on their perineums, respectively, I got handfuls of their package. For them it added to the thrill of it all. For me I got a little of their life stuff, a little thrill as well.

Okay, well, uh, the last time I did that with them, I mean the instruction, and regardless of what else was going on that was too, we did a sprint race, a spontaneous thing that just happened when we got up, the boys just wanting to, just the length of the artist quarter square, but it was enough to pull a ligament in my knee, although one could’ve been torn for all I know. I never went to the doctor about it, couldn’t afford to. That injury was to last six months, drug on and on, and I could no longer do my meditation/pranayama exercise, that specific one that raised the kundalini. That’s not all it raises, what my muse showed you last time. I could walk okay, but any bending of the knee beyond that hurt. Made it hard to do construction work, but not impossible.

About a month or so after I got to Auroville I went to their pranic healer for help, a middle-aged Indian woman that had a slightly saintly demeanor, not in the sanctimonious sense, in reality, but she was so down to earth you saw that earth first. You just believed in her. I lay down, in a little healing room made with thick concrete walls—everything is in India. Windows are cut out of it, usually with nothing between you and outside world when it was open except bars, and bars don’t keep the bugs out. Here, if I remember right, no bars, and the windows were high up on the wall, long slits, like windows in bathrooms, so people couldn’t see in. I’d told her of the knee injury. She began using her hands to make motions of drawing energy out of it, and I was surprised I could feel that drawing up in my knee. Then she abruptly gave it over to whom I thought was her assistant, a White woman also her age, who was similar to her in demeanor but not earthy, just a little holier than thou. I was disappointed and asked if she were her assistant. The woman was slightly offended by that question and told me she was a pranic healer from Findhorn, a large, enduring, intentional community in Scotland, and she was visiting Auroville.

The Auroville healer left the room, and the Findhorn healer continued the drawing out of energy from the right knee as the other had done, telling me she saw black energy coming out of it, any trace of being offended having left her. She had just gotten right down to business. I became at ease, beginning to trust her. Intrigued she’d mentioned seeing energy, I asked her about it, telling her that I saw lights around or near people a lot, circles, lines, irregular shapes, of many colors, especially when people spoke out for the first time or sneezed or something. She explained I was seeing the emotional aura, the shape and color an indication of what that person was feeling at that moment, a temporary thing. She said the inner aura was more permanent, the colors constant, but in my limited experience seeing the inner aura glowing around a person, like once (in a samadhi during a public meeting in the town hall of Gaberville, but that’s a story not on the galaxy of this book), I suspect it’s not so constant but changes too, albeit slowly. She finished, and I got up, thanked her, and left. I think it was donation based, not exactly free, and I don’t remember if I gave anything or not.

That night the real effects of pranic healing showed themselves. I mean how it heals, and it’s possible the healers aren’t all that aware of the holistic nature of its healing process, thinking removing the negative energies is the largest part of it. All that movement of energy around the injured knee manifested in a dream the cause of the injury, its inner essence. I was lucid and forgot how that came about, as it’s not usual I’ll just be lucid as a dream begins, but it has happened, and I was sitting on the top of a small but steep and tall hill, with my legs dangling down it was that steep. It was a little like the artificial hill in Herman Park in central Houston, which housed on top the amphitheater I saw Shakespeare’s A Mid Summer Night’s Dream in (or was it Twelfth Night?) with Randy during those three some odd years of intense inner study I keep referring to. What I remember most about the performance was the samadhi I experienced before the show. The constant hum of a normal crowd provides a possibility of inner experience I suspect few realize. It like puts you underwater. I was so disappointed I had to come out of it and go get Randy and show him to our seats. In samadhi, or yogic trance, if you move your body you lose it, but there is the possibility of staying in it and walking around some, a very slim possibility damn hard to actualize, although with any experience of samadhi, you can feel its effects for hours afterwards. You are more inner and quiet, feel that calm in your inner earth.

I went to Herman Park all through my boyhood (here I link later to Richard Linklater. The moonshot movie hung the moon), not too often but often enough, as it’s quite a draw for kids in Houston, what with being able to take a large piece of cardboard and slide down that grassy hill and all, not near as steep as in the dream but sloped enough, and being able play on the stage of the amphitheater. Houston is flatland, and you don’t find many stages open to the public that kids can play on. I frequented the park almost daily once I moved out of Montrose and into an apartment in the museum district during those intense inner years I keep mentioning, am mentioning now. It hasn’t been the stage of many dreams in my life, just a couple or so that I remember, but of course I only remember a small fraction of the dreams I’ve had. The environment of the dream had its own little cosmos to it, like everything was mocked up, swooped up, and ready for representation. It was a representation of urban community, and I was on the heart, or at the top, of that. I looked at my legs, and my penis was on my right knee, not between my legs, and I understood the actual cause of the injury, understood it in the sense I completely realized it, in my very body, and when I woke up I was healed, no pain in my knee at all. I know it’s a risk to show you all this, but these are needed things to see, the ways and means at the heart of town hall, and that it matters so much what goes down there.

You can see for yourself
with someone who is winning in this country
control tower Auroville.
I don’t think you know the danger,
what it means when a government takes over Auroville.
It fails.
No human unity.
Just another Indian city land on the Earth
full of people.

They won’t even admit that they’re takin over.
They lie to get there,
Modi’s government.
And then they punish those responsible
for resistin’ the hostile takeover.
I think the Paris agreement will seal this fate
behind closed doors.
It’s happenin’ now.

Okay how do we turn this around?
No, it’s not possible.
You can’t do anything about it.
Not protest has worked,
and no court has worked.
No course has worked.
It’s over it seems.

What can we do?
Do you hear me?
Nothin’s gonna work.
You have to get international concern.
You have to try.
Here the freebirds sing.
People care about Auroville
who are concerned about government control,
who are concerned with political freedom,
who are concerned with international human unity,
who want the world to change,
who want a better world.

Do you know how to find them?
It’s in your race book,
everybody’s that got a minority skin color
the majority are not true to,
oppressed peoples
in this world,
and the spiritual but not religious,
the freedom fighters,
the utopian dreamers,
the smart people
who see change as the only way,
a change in world happenin’,
a change in the very nature of society.
a change in how we do things,
a change in the very fabric of reality.

Can you find these people?
Can you get them concerned?
It’s in the making.
We’ve got to get this word out:
we’ve got to change the world.
A call for help
is not a call for help
unless it’s that.

It’s not Auroville you want to save.
Just another city under siege,
all these good people oppressed by bad.
You want the world to see the world
change in Auroville.
All the particulars dock soup.
The very progress of human civilization is at stake,
where civilization falls.
Can we go there?
Can you do this rightly
up and down the line?
Go for it.

Do you understand my meanin’?
I’m not layin’ blame pointing fingers,
arguing against your soup.
I’m sayin’ we need to grab the world here
and designate this plan on earth:
a city becomes human-wide,
isn’t bound by any nation,
isn’t so rudely put together
together.
What dreamlessness drove it
to war with itself?

I think we come to grips with those elements first,
the hostile takeover.
We make it a city again
whole in its complete parts.
Then we reach for human unity,
and that’s not a byword or slogan to use.
It becomes the nature of the city itself,
an experimental township
that does things differently
than any place on earth.

It’s got no holes to regard.
No people are a sin.
It strives for healing in every area of life.
What does it mean?
Every facet of society
shoulders the human being.
No one is left out
who put their lives on the line for this.
Who are not strong for this?
They bring it on the line with them:
their hands on effort to be control.
It’s an all out effort
on the part of everybody
to make a city safe
for the human being,
whoever they might be.

Do you see my coffee?
It’s a no holds barred
attempt at human unity.
That’s what we’re walkin’ here.
Can you read my lips?
Can you see the change ahead?
Let’s get started.
We’ve got human worth to consider.
You’re not blind.
You can see this worth everyone.
Let’s do it.
I’m talkin’ today.

Bring the world to Auroville
in whatever form it can arrive.
Flood the city
with the arms of humanity
puttin’ city back on its worth.
Drive the government out of Auroville,
because it doesn’t belong there,
the Indian government.
It belongs to humanity, period.

This needs to be known far and wide:
our very humanity’s at stake
in a city called Auroville,
because that’s where we change into new human beings.
That’s the experimental ground.
That’s the holistic movement towards paradise
on this very Earth,
even though here tangy,
and brought that I wear bone,
hear this person say and that.
We are a work in process,
and we need time to breathe,
but we’re gonna make it
if we have the chance to be.

Oh world will you help us out?
Will you give us our freedom?
We need it as soon as you can get here,
as soon as possible please.
You hear the writing on the wall?

And we get some space for a new carpet.
How forced you must be,
who’s just listenin’ to integers.
You know they’re above Auroville.
We’ve found some on laws,
and that didn’t work.
We have to be free and flexible plan.
And even guidelines can falter
when we’re tryin’ to get rid of dogs.
They belong here,
in our homes not wild in our streets.
Same can be said for people
that God made.
Some people can be in the rough, you know?

The French connection
will bowl you over.
It’s a strong contingent in Auroville
not sure what it means.
Be nice to them,
but don’t let them stand in the way of progress.

They want the Mother out,
and they worship the Mother.
What do you do with the secretary?
They think she’s her.
Careful with this lot.
They’re bound to stand in your way.
Phillip,
hear me out.
You need to listen.

I don’t know if anybody’s worthy of divine livin’.
We stretch this far:
as far as it takes to include everybody
really wanna be
servitors of the divine consciousness.
How learn to do that
in the right place.
This is a sanctuary
for every type of person
whose nature makes them so.
And we play ball
with how this community runs right.
We are here for that.

Every city takes the long game
to get it right down to business.
Every city takes a long time to sort out.
Freedom
lets this happen.
We’ve started this process.
You can look on the calendar.
I have come into particular use.
Have I mentioned the future?
Run, baby, run.

They know what they’re doing.
They’re less than that.
The residents of Auroville are a say so in the matter.
They do it right.
It’s not what they’re tryin’ to communicate.
I think they’re just reacting to a hostile takeover
Like regular people in a regular city
But tellin’ you they’ve accomplished so much,
much more than they actually have.
Okay, give them trees and sustainable development.

I don’t think they understand silence
when it’s called for,
silence to know what to do.
Instead they fight among themselves,
unaware of the spider in the room,
the government takeover.
We’ve got bad teeth.
Can you just leave us alone?

We’re extraordinary timekeepers.
We’ve lagged behind for years.
We don’t understand ourselves,
and that’s a gun.
Chalk it all up to inexperience
with what Auroville was created to achieve,
a balanced human unity.
It’s not the government get that done.
They’ll just chop people up,
make their own playground.
These are the days of nationalism in India.

They Residents Assembly
can’t fight that.
So Auroville is doomed.
A crumble from within and a force from without
kill everybody.
There’s your picture.
It doesn’t make you smile.
Another failure on earth
to make the right society,
to progress humanity.

It can only be done in spheres,
so it can get its act together.
There’s enough room to do that
in an experimental city.
Anything else is too big.
We need these pilot programs
to save the world,
to learn how to do it,
to study so we can.
Can you gauge this?
There is no other city more important.

It’s got our plans at heart.
It’s how we make it outta here:
danger zone.
We study their do it,
the city that achieves human unity.
Small hands large workshop.
It’s the shape of the Earth.

Blanket this in time.
We aren’t going to do this all at once.
So much has to be worked out.
So much to do.
We need your sanction to get on it.
Tell us we have the go ahead.
Tell us now.
Blanket Auroville with your concern.

Take your city into your own hands,
world,
and put it to play in time.
Give it its mission
from your global hands and minds.
That’s where it’s at.
That’s what we need.
Humanity can you hear me?

We require your presence,
and don’t forget to come,
or send some presence of yourself
in communication form.
Petitions are just zero man.
We need your living eyes.
We need this now,
now and forever,
to be your city upon the Earth.
Come.

Look, this 100% know it all God ended for something:
God is not human on earth in men’s minds.
What do we do now?
I lecture in politics.
Okay religion holds a key.
Do you want a Hindu state?
Do you really?
That’s the change that’s happenin’
in India.
Mark my words.

They’re emulating Israel.
You can see them bulldoze homes.
Do we have security here?
That’s where this is headin’ I’m sorry.
You want everybody controlled and regulated.
This is not about politics.
It’s about forcing men and women
to be a Hindu or worship Hindu.
If they’re Muslims they’re out of luck,
or any other minority.
We’ll see if Sikhs hold the candle flame.
And if you’re not Hindu enough,
wham! the police state will ensure that.

You’ve got to wake up people,
and let’s start in Auroville.
It’s the high ground.
We lose it we lose the nation.
I don’t think you know what’s at stake here.
You don’t want police everywhere,
even in your tea.
A China syndrome,
it’s happenin’ now.
Converge on Auroville
all you lines of thought.
Defeat the government there,
and the BJP will lose power.
Religious observance
will not be mandatory.

Auroville holds the master plan.
You’ll find the decision in Auroville:
do you want a Hindu state?
I’ve declared martial law.
I’ve got you to overrun Auroville.
I’ve put people in the streets
blocking traffic.
I’ve made a big clusterfuck.

We have a better plan.
Let’s not invite chaos.
We are not angry protesters in the street.
We destroy no property.
We are serious for change,
and in our behavior we start.
That’s the true spirit of Auroville.

You are so polite it’s not even funny,
and you are observant of India’s laws,
civil disobedient
only if you’re protesting’s been stopped,
and then you do that peacefully
and with measure,
highly respectful of Indian law and custom.
That includes in modes of dress.

We need a war
that hurts no one
except that part in man that oppress,
and we need this in Auroville,
at the earliest possible date.
I’m 12 strong.
I’m using the Mother’s voice to say this.
I’m all over India.
I’m in your shoes.
Now you know I’m serious,
serious as a heart attack.
Come people.
Come now.

We want a better world,
and Auroville is the battleground.
Only you don’t fight.
You respectfully demand for change.
How many dictators rule the world,
how many authoritarian figures,
how many regime governments,
and all these people oppressing one another?
Look at China.
Look at North Korea.
Look at Myanmar
and the Russian government.
I’ve lost count,
but Iran needs a new government too
and Turkey.
Do we count the Philippines?
We certainly do.
The list goes on,
and in America let’s keep Trump
from coming back in power.
Let’s keep him out.
Let’s keep him from holding political office.

Bring all of this to Auroville,
in whatever form you can
Send letters.
Send all you can do from online.
Send your goodwill for change,
your very focused attitude that it does,
and send yourself
if you can get past the barriers
of legal bureaucracy,
and you have the means to come.
We can afford to keep going,
and you have the means to stay.

Have I started an insurrection?
We do not overthrow the Indian government.
It’s not India we’re at.
It’s Auroville.
The government out of there.
The voters can take care of Modi
all India-wide.
He is not your friend.
He’s a danger to your democracy.
He really is.
Stop him there.
We stop him in Auroville,
and we don’t stop until we do.

Organize yourselves
in peaceful demonstrations
and civil protests,
with every means available that are not violent
and that hurt no one
or set fire to anything,
even effigies
or flags.
The Indian flag you put in a place of honor.
You don’t spit on this country.
Rowdy boys stay out of town.
Agent provocateurs identify and tell to leave.
Do not support them.
Do even let them breathe.
There will be no physical violence,
and we will even watch our speech.
Anger will not control the situation.
Firm goodwill will
intent of change.
Now come.
You’ve heard me.

Agent provocateurs,
a protest makes or breaks on that.
Anyone promoting violence will be one,
violence of any kind.
They are removed immediately,
and if they get violent they are restrained.
Just don’t hurt them.
No other order will work.
You’ve got to remove the violence,
immediately,
no ifs, ands or buts about it.
A stormed building is a hostile takeover,
what we’re tryin’ to prevent.
You will occupy no building
you do not live or work in.
You will storm no town hall.

I thought it might be nice
If we didn’t just random protest.
I think chaos don’t like schedules.
Organize the protests around that,
keeping chaos out.
But let’s not be machine-gunned down.
They were disappointed.
They couldn’t fire their guns at an angry crowd.
People just sat down an OM’d, you know?
That’s how to do it,
without hellfire and damnation.

A creative skit,
some good music,
and people readin’ poetry,
yah hear me kids?
Get creative,
not self-righteous and mean.
It’s a human unity problem,
and we solve it that way.

Over a cup of coffee the world changed.
I thought a world out.
Now here’s the nigger of the situation.
Twenty years ago in Auroville I was a bad set of keys.
I got kicked out my name,
and I’ve been outside Auroville ever since,
somebody who wants in.
Well that’s the limit of this verse you see.
Now I’m organizin’ resistance.
The story of my change is in this book.
It’s what you want to read.
I’m not a principle player now.
I’ve just shown you the Mother
and her way to do it.
I am the poet here,
a seer.

I’ve brought change in the book,
as I’ve described my life,
and that’s as far as I go,
as a behind the scene witness.
The organization lead,
I’m not in on it.
If you hear me come.
Don’t hesitate come immediately.
Auroville action,
you must think do now.

Mary Poppins rides a horse in the sky.
I don’t know what that means.
I will tell you.
Come on let’s go.
Judaism,
I don’t know what that means.
I’ve just been very close
to the explanations of culture.
I’ve counted religious expression in my book.
I am not a scholar on Jewish mysticism.
I’ve just shown you my things in light of those things,
and I’ve gone to Safed
to be there with you.

Why do you want that in there?
A disclaimer,
we want to continue with our book,
no holds barred.
Ready for resources.
Ready to tell you what this book is worth.
It’s the next chapter.

And you have all these dogs,
wonderful color they can be seen.
I bet you think you’re complete.
Get a dog
and find out what love means.
While you’re doin’ that,
cats are welcome too.
Are we clear on that?
Good,
I don’t want you to think I’m prejudice.
Oh my goodness,
I do prefer dogs I do I do.
One’s licking my ear right now.
You silly thing,
I sure love you.

I want to work out this obstacle
and behind,
and that’s Arab and Arab participation.
And that’s spiritual experiences,
but
we have to know they’re real.
Can you use me as a gauge?
I’ve presented some plainly.
I’ve shown you spiritual experience.
It’s how we see one another
as where we put our love.
That’s the record keeper.
That’s the storybook.
It’s how we get along.
Can you be potato love?
That’s where you forgive people
as you become important to them.
Let’s hold this flag, shall we?
It’s where we brush our teeth.

Learnin’ on some level gettin’ on the plane,
we’re all doin’ it.
I’m just pointing out particulars
in Israel and India.
I can’t blend everything nicely.
There’s so much to work on,
so much to see.
And if you see I’ve giving you a handle
on world change.
Press the lever.
Come to Auroville now.

That’s the plan
to change the world.
It’s a bona fide hands on opportunity
to begin.
All people of goodwill
won’t you please come?
That’s a safe haven
for the change we need to see.
It’s where we begin.
And it belongs to you world.
Don’t let it slip away.
Don’t be robbed of this opportunity
by authoritarian government.
Don’t just sit there and think.
Do,
and do it quickly.

We’ll be propaganda
for all who oppose.
We’ll be laughed at and ridiculed
for being of one mind like this.
Stupid ideal thinkers,
did you think the world would come?
You foolish man
(who does he think he is?),
can you call the world?

When you’re finished laughing read me again.
I didn’t just piss my pants.
I gave you a lever for world change,
and I know the world like you don’t,
know its deeps.
Okay you ignored me,
and that’s funny ain’t it?
And that is so very sad.
Don’t you want a better world?
Where we gonna find it
if your hands don’t measure up?
Cut the political identities all together,
the religious I am this I am that.
How do we be people savin’ the world?
There is no other way come together.
That’s the vocabulary in the room.

Renounce me as one of the board members
who petrify the world.
Oh you silly people,
you put sex in such first place,
and you think pedophiles rule the planet,
those that want to blame someone,
and pedophiles are free.
Everybody hates them.
I’m not countin’ crows.
I’m lettin’ you in on a little secret:
pedophiles don’t control the world.

They stand and sing
about what smarts in humanity.
They control themselves.
They make it right.
They bring down the word to men and women.
They put children on the right path.
They help make a better world.
They show you how it’s done,
and they put change in your hand,
if you want to use it or not.
I’ve described to you the pages of this book,
who wrote it and why.

You’ll conspiracy this to death,
but there’s only me here and my muse.
Wow, what a heavy punch.
Can you gauge it?
This is beyond the world,
and we give the outcast that role,
take us beyond ourselves.
No one else has mandatory change.
It all fits so well
if you can see it.
God action, you know?

They’re coming.
They’re coming.
And it’s not if I come it’s when I come.
Tell me how you’re gonna keep me out.
Hit all your buttons, don’t I?
Hello?

Now come to papa,
arousin’ the kundalini.
The kundalini,
don’t you do that.
It’s some rough stuff
and will have you sexual in your fingers.
You can’t control yourself.
It is so very arousal.
Or you’ll go crazy
with a bump in the road.
You won’t have a nice time.
Just listen to God,
and let Him reach with the base of the spine.
Sexual purification
before arousal,
and everything gets cleaned
on the way down.
When God strikes that serpent awake,
you’re ready.
Just don’t read the chapter until you’re finished.
That means you wait for God.
Barbara’s here,
where the chapter ends,
and we thank God.

He’s got a little consciousness there about him.
I’m the branch of a tree.
And that’s divine worth.
It didn’t walk.
They didn’t major to erupt.
They brought you in your consciousness there.
And that’s Kabbalah.
Got a foreigner
pickin’ up the Vedas.
And here it is
today.
It’s where we’re at today.
That’s the magic of this special moon.
Luna Rottweiler, photo by me

Next post:

Chapter 12

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 10

The Cosmic Rose by Hans Vredman de Vries? 1595, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

You Can Gimmie my Car

A day later, on what would be my last day in Safed, as I’d be leaving the first thing the next morning, someone came out of the woodwork and invited me to spend my last night at his house. I’d seen him a time or two, but he wasn’t part of the scene at the studio, although he was an expat American. Like Moshehiem, he was a little older than the rest. He had an apartment a ways down the street from the square the studio was on. When I arrived he told me it was movie night, and we’d be watching a movie with some friends of his that were coming over, but first he wanted to talk to me, see who and how I was.

The first thing I noticed was that I wasn’t a non-Jew with him. I was just another person he didn’t yet know to like or not. This is a hard thing to define, but with most of the other Jews there I could feel this thing between us, a way they had of looking at me inside themselves whereby I was outside of people they identified with. Let me explain. We are taught to value more what someone says to us than the taste of their consciousness towards us, because the latter is so subjective, but it’s in the latter we more live, move, and have our being. It’s the encounter we have with one another in the waters of consciousness that’s the real event, which the words are just markers for, more often than not masks concealing what the consciousness is really feeling towards the other. Study yourself when talking with someone, whomever they might be, and see if your words ring true to, or even come close to capturing, all the many different things you’re feeling inside while talking to them. If you can see it’s the same with them then you can see what I’m saying.

He was in his early 30s as I was, had a head of black curly hair slightly longer than men wore their hair there and a body a little on the heavy side but not actually fat. He had a round, clear face and the type of look in his eyes that tried to let in what they saw, not just study it, but they were not yet the open windows to the soul eyes can be. He told me that, unbeknownst to the others, and he’d like to keep it that way, he’d been the president of a Hare Krishna temple in America. I’ve forgotten where, as I’ve also forgotten his name, but to honor his universality I’ll call him Krishna. He was also a student of the Kabbalah and one that seemed to know more about it than anyone I’d yet met expect Kathinka, a painter in Jerusalem, who figured in our hunger strike because her art studio was the closest building to our camp near Jaffa Gate and because she was a beautiful person, and she figured prominently in my life after Safed, as a friend. She got her world expanded when she met me. I mean her ‘you gotta be a Jew to go deep’. Simply you just have to show the Way is not bound by Judaism. A non-Jew can practice the whole nine yards. She was surprised at me, delighted ultimately. Krishna didn’t know the Kabbalah in the sense of having had deep mystical experience himself, or at least not that I gathered, but he did in the sense of recognizing it when he heard it. He had an intellectual understanding of higher states of consciousness, but it was more than most had, who seemed to associate the Kabbalah more with magic than a change of consciousness into a higher mode. The very first thing he wanted to hear from me, however, was the Hitler poem he’d heard about.

When I finished reciting it, Krishna looked at me a long moment and then declared that the poem was Kabbalah. I got the impression he was saying something just to validate me, something that sounded good but was virtually meaningless. I asked him what he meant by that; does it capture the whole of the Kabbalah or what? He then surprised me by talking about soul healing and how much the Kabbalah had to do with the soul and how it heals. Up until that moment I’d not glimpsed the depth of the Kabbalah and was beginning to believe, as I keep saying, that it had more to do with magic than honest to God real spirituality. Later, with Kathinka, I was to learn it’s even mapped out the higher spiritual states overhead and at least had some idea of Supermind, but more like a forbidden zone. I had had no idea the Kabbalah was so deep, had gauged that far. That means somewhere along the way a Jewish mystic had experienced it.

We were sitting in his living room, he reclined on an easy chair and me on a cushioned sofa. It was a small apartment, and, like most of the ones I’d been in, had been part of a larger stone house that appeared to be a hundred years old or more. He was very relaxed and put me at ease in the way he just let his hair down. He explained why he invited me to spend the night. The day before was Shabbot, and, as with every Shabbot, all the young American’s came over to his house to pray, but on this Shabbot, which was the one I got excluded from, they didn’t pray but talked about the goy, which was me. He said he was in his living room praying and they in the den, and by his description of everything I got the impression he was somebody in their religious circle they looked up to, but he never claimed to be anybody in particular nor spoke of himself as someone anyone would look to for spiritual guidance.

He said they were making such a racket he got up from his prayer and went to the group, who were all kneeling on the floor in a prayer circle, about six or seven young men and women, and he told them they were there to pray, not talk, especially not about other people, and that he didn’t want the word goy used in his house, and that for all anyone knew I could be the Mashiach. That I wasn’t Jewish but still could be the Jewish mashiach, at least for that one moment he wanted to get his point across, the point being I was as important as anyone else and should be afforded the same respect as everybody, shows you what kind of person Krishna was. After telling them that, he sent them all out of his house. He said watching them leave was when he decided to invite me over, and here I was.

Hearing all that, and wanting to impress him, validate his standing up for a stranger, and to give him something in return, as anything we say captained by an ego always has mixed motives behind it, I took a look at my merit badges on my chest, err, my spiritual experiences I wore on my sleeve, and I chose to tell him about the two I had driving my black, Datsun, pickup truck I was driving earlier in this book. They are related, the two experiences I mean. He got a very abbreviated version of the two experiences, but I have the time and place here to tell them more fully, but both have been posted on the net in different places.

It was 1991. I don’t renember how long it’d been since the journey to the well of soul, but I think it was only a week or so, that reaching of my deepest place acting like a springboard up. I remember I was looking at a horned moon that had a bright star, or planet, right on its bottom tip, and I could not keep my eyes off it, although I was driving, from my mom’s house to my apartment just off Old Galveston Road a few kilometers from NASA, the apartment by the railroad tracks. Apartments lined both sides of the street, which wasn’t straight but formed a very long curve. I was stoned on some good grass, had been stoned all day, like I was everyday more or less, and I’d just put out a cigarette. On the radio was playing the Led Zeppelin song “Whole Lotta Love”. I can add sex to the equation to make it equal to sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll, but let’s just say that I wasn’t bramachari in those days, although I wasn’t at that moment having sex at the steering wheel, did not have the type of person I’m attracted to there in the truck with me, which is a little boy (I was currently waving in my commitment to the person growth process towards wholeness and healing but would presently get a fresh upgrade). I say all this so to illustrate my path, which is of darkness to light, the very misunderstood tantric left-handed path. It’s misunderstood because people think you choose it. You don’t. You take it because it takes you. I mean, you’re this thing that can’t or doesn’t control itself, which is a debate that has raged for ever, who has the control, you or it, and the path just takes you by the balls.

The song was in that strange stretch of sounds it makes that pull you from the inside, swirling and whirling as they do, and suddenly I found myself a few meters over my head looking down at myself through the roof of the truck as the little me drove it. I say little because that person down there, the whole world he was in, was just an appendage of myself, and not the main event, not even close. I was no longer him but something infinitely bigger. I was very remote from the world on the high end of a long thin line on the bottom of which was that little me, who I could see was in prison so incredibly small and boxed in was his world, which I was no longer in or even in his universe but was beyond both. This I just knew, but it wasn’t what captured my attention.

I was Me! Finally I’d found myself. This was who I was, where I began and where I’d inevitably return, the Person that had ventured into the world’s ocean of lives, the Individual I was beyond all and that watched the adventure from on high. This wasn’t interpretation afterwards but what I knew being Myself. I also knew that when I’d return to the little me I’d never be able to render the experience in any form that would give a true picture of it because we can only see only one pole of experience at a time down here. My vision saw through everything I was driving past, from up there, although I was in a perfect stillness and not moving at all, something that doesn’t sound possible down here in finite littleness.

As I drove down the street, the little me negotiating the curve without my help, I saw through the apartment walls to the people sitting or standing in them, saw through them to their natures, saw through and into the heart of anything I looked at, saw like the One sees because I was one with whatever I saw, and it was the One I saw myself as, not God as you might think, but I knew at the same time I was only a portion of its total see.

I can describe the way my mind thought thoughts, which was like they had substance and weren’t separate from what they thought about or from the outside world, if there was an inside and outside to that Me, as it seemed to me a different arrangement than we have down here, one where there was no separation from the inner and outer, but I’m going into speculation and interpretation, and so I’ll just say that, as suddenly as I found myself up there, I found myself back in my sense-bound prison down here, and I parked my truck in the nearest driveway and cried my eyes out, both overwhelmed by the experience and by the loss of who I really am, and I vowed to become myself again, whatever it takes.

A year later I was driving that same truck, but this time down a Central Texas highway going 55 miles an hour, and I experienced the full force of Silent Mind. I knew something was about to happen in my consciousness, unlike with the overhead experience, and so I’d taken the weekend off to go camping at a place I considered safe for me, a place of power, somewhere I’d been going to since I was a teenager, Enchanted Rock, a State Natural Area in West Central Texas. I was a different person than the year before. The overhead experience had changed my life, turned it completely around. The spiritual path is one thing if you’re on it because you believe there’s a goal, I mean a goal other than going to Heaven when you die, a goal like enlightenment or becoming your higher self, but if you know it’s there because you’ve seen it with your own eyes, or have been it, even for only several seconds as I had, doubt is removed, and without a doubt you as to where you’re going you go. We are very stubborn and ignorant creatures, and the problem with experiences, even one where you become your true self a moment, is that the effects don’t last, those that make you focus solely on the Path and that get you out of moral troubles.

When I drove home from that overhead experience, from being for a moment who I am in reality, and I cannot stress enough that that’s the overwhelming thing you come back with, I had a mission: get back up there, become Myself again. The problem was, I had no idea how or where I might find anyone, anywhere, that knew about the experience. Descriptions of what’s described as enlightenment or realization did not even come close, but I as yet had no idea what that was, enlightenment I mean, only that, by the descriptions, you are still in the little prison down here, albeit unconcerned with it so peaceful, empty, and blissed out you are. I began searching spiritual books, but I couldn’t even find a description of overhead experience, let alone of being that God-self up there.

It happened I bought a book on Tibetan Buddhism by Evans-Wenz, and I found what I thought to be a possible reference to overhead experience, and so I began to pour over the Tibetan writings he’d translated, which consist of three books, focusing on the book the reference was in, Tibetan Yoga and Secret Doctrines. It bears mentioning that, sometime later, I read a different English translation of what I’d read there, and there was not even a hint of an overhead experience. Whatever the case, the book did its magic, but it wasn’t to be ‘getting back up there’ that I got out of it, but a momentary experience of enlightenment, a glimpse of reality, how Buddhists put it, but they just have no idea how big reality is.

Using that book, I constructed a sadhana, or spiritual practice, based not only on that book but on my own ideas of what that might entail, deciding to just do all of the above. I quite smoking cigarettes, entirely, any indulgence of sex, stopped the daily smoking of grass, but I allowed myself a joint for a special meditation one day a week, which was in a dark closet I used once a day for my daily half hour meditation, where I just tried to stop all thoughts. I became a vegetarian, but I ate a cheese burger and fries every Friday afternoon, and I can’t tell you how appropriate that was, did a daily routine of the basic yoga asanas, did pranayama, breathing exercises, for one full hour before going to sleep, jogged a few miles one day and did a five mile ‘rucksack march’ the next, stopped any unnecessary chatter with everyone, even Randy, the best friend I told you about earlier, didn’t have a TV, but I made sure I didn’t pay attention to my mom’s when I visited her, which was seldom during that time, didn’t go to the movies or read anything except that book, played continuously a cassette tape of the OM whenever I was in my apartment, even during sleep, and made my mind think about nothingness (because that’s what the book said) as much as I could remember to make it do that.

I should mention that, although I was strict about doing the routine, I wasn’t rigid about it, as you can see from the cheese burger, and I would not do this or that practice if it was inopportune, or something presented itself that appeared to be something that would take me in the direction I wanted to go in a more opportune way at that moment. Sundays was my day of rest from the more physical practices, but I still maintained the sadhana attitude in speech and deed Sundays too. I had one Greek class a day during the week, mornings, and usually an hour or more of homework, which I did at work, and I worked the 3 to 11 shift five days a week at Four Leaf Towers, as a doorman and valet. It should hardly need mentioning that I continued inner exploration throughout. This sadhana I just described I did for about three months. Although I’d worked up to it over the course of time, having begun things like meditation and pranayama before even the soul experience, I came to the point where it appeared to me it was do or die; that I had to just put my life into it, and I could do that because I had no doubt there was a there to go to. But I had no idea what getting up there again entailed, to my true self, since I’d just suddenly found myself in that sitting station above my head without so much as a hold onto your hat, and it didn’t occur to me that wasn’t the usual way it happens. I didn’t know how it happened.

I felt it inside me, something deep and powerful wanting to come out. I just knew something was about to happen, so tuned I was to the feeling and texture of my consciousness, having been so focused on its upkeep and change for a whole season, meaning a period of three months. It was a temporary jet booster sadhana. I don’t know how sustainable it is to do continuously, but the world has things to offer our sadhana too, and so to turn your back to its many voices too long would work against it it appears to me.

I got some time off work, got my camping and hiking gear together, and I began the long drive to Enchanted Rock, a couple of hundred miles. I don’t know where I was in route, but the land had changed from forest to semi-desert and was a rather featureless expanse, something conducive to experiences of the nature of the one I’m about to describe. Probably on account of my impulsiveness, and my habit to smoke grass while driving, and the monotony of the roadway, but it may have been from intuition, I decided, “what the heck, I’ll smoke that joint now.” I’d taken one, figuring I’d smoke it on the Rock and do a meditation, and that probably the consciousness would do its thing. It might’ve happened that way too, and it might not have, and maybe I’d have been able to handle what happened better, but I’ll never know. Anyway, I lit the joint and began to take long, deep drags off it. I smoked it down the roach and put it out. The first thing I noticed was my experience of both myself and the world had undergone a one hundred and eighty degree change: my center of self was gone.

Admitted through a curtain of bright mind
That hangs between our thoughts and absolute sight,
He found the occult cave, the mystic door
Near to the well of vision in the soul,
And entered where the Wings of Glory brood
In the silent space where all is for ever known.
Indifferent to doubt and to belief,
Avid of the naked real’s single shock
He shore the cord of mind that ties the earth-heart
And cast away the yoke of Matter’s law.
The body’s rules bound not the spirit’s powers:
When life had stopped its beats, death broke not in;
He dared to live when breath and thought were still.
Thus could he step into that magic place
Which few can even glimpse with hurried glance
Lifted for a moment from mind’s laboured works
And the poverty of Nature’s earthly sight.

From Savitri by Sri Aurobindo
(Courtesy of The Sri Aurobindo Ashram Press)

Boundlessness, shorelessness, these are ways people have tried to picture the feeling of the consciousness when you’re center is gone. I’m talking about what we all take for granted, a center around which we revolve ourselves, that little knot of ego. The illimitable state had an edge to it that made me feel like I had to swim, had no land or even a buoy that I could grab ahold of to stop swimming awhile, whereas, captained by an ego, existence is just automatic, no swimming involved. The swimming, though, was in an ocean of peace, as contrary as that might sound to it having an edge.

I reached for thought, and the thought I was thinking branched in two, and I actually saw this in my mind, the train of thought branch in two, and as soon as I saw both thoughts at the same time, my thought process came to an abrupt halt, like an engine that had just had a wrench thrown into it, and Silence and entered the room, something that wasn’t just an absence of sound but had the stuff of substance, as contrary as that might also sound to the presence of emptiness that had just shattered my world. Believe me, I’ve tried many times to remember that train of thought. I’d imagine it might be a trigger, but maybe only under those unique circumstances.

Not knowing what on earth to do, I started pranayama, starting out by taking a deep breath, but when I exhaled, the breathing also abruptly stopped, and there was no need to inhale again. If that wasn’t weird enough, my heart took a couple of erratic beats and then it too stopped, yet I continued driving, a dead man at the stirring wheel. The Tibetan book does not mention this; nothing in my whole life experience had ever even hinted such was possible, and I just drove down the road the biggest exclamation point ever hovering over the roof of my truck as figures and such do in the characters and such of video games, figuratively speaking. This lasted for maybe a couple of minutes or more. I don’t rightly know how long.

I had a mantra, or rather, a snatch of a popular song I was using as a mantra, what I’d sung in my truck often while driving, and only there, what incidentally, I heard one night working the concierge’s desk at Four Leaf Towers when I picked up the phone, heard just that snatch of song and nothing else, an example of the mind games Interfin played with me, for whatever reason, but probably had something to do with that damn demon I’d conjured some two years before, or maybe they just did that with everybody, to show you they ‘knew’, but it wasn’t happening with other employees I’d asked. The mantra’s from a song by Noel Paul Stookey, “The Wedding Song (There is Love): the snatch of it I used was “the union of your spirits here has caused him to remain, for whenever two or more of you are gathered in his name, there is love.”

I have no idea how I could sing it, as I wasn’t breathing, but you must remember we are already walking on miracle here, holding hands with the impossible. There must have been enough air left in my lungs to sing it once, but I don’t rightly know how it came out of my mouth. On the word love my voice changed to some incredible metallic sound, but it had nothing to do with the sound of machines or insects. That’s just the closest word I can use to describe how it sounded. It was not of this world. It was also beautiful.

At that sound, or rather, on that note, I felt a burning sensation at the base of the spine, and then I felt a force ascending up it, and I say force, but it was like a rocket ship. It got about to the region of my solar plexus, and, for reasons I still can’t figure out but probably have to do with some automatic reflex when confronted with strange after strange overtopping one another, and this was the biggest stranger, this rapid, rocket, ascension, I literally shook the holy fire out of myself and stopped it in its tracks, and still to this day that charkra is blocked.

Everything turned back on, my heart, my breath, my mind, my ego, but it didn’t just suddenly end; I bounced back down there to that bear bones reality a few times, not getting even to the illimitable, but close enough to feel the reeling of the infinite bound down upon me once again. I just couldn’t take it and stopped at the next store, a lone one on the highway, bought a pack of smokes and smoked one after another until I could smoke no more. It helped to ease the emptiness.

Arriving at Enchanted Rock, I was visited by the most forlorn feelings I’ve ever faced, and I walked around the outdoor theater there, not even bothering to climb up the mountain. I just walked and talked to myself, trying to put reality back into its place, but it wouldn’t fit anymore because I’d seen there was no reality, or rather, reality had no substance to it, was not real. You read about some spiritual state and right away want it, but when you actually experience it, it turns out to be very different than you imagined. The Tibetan book had talked about the state of enlightenment as being characterized primarily by emptiness, although there are other aspects of it, and it was emptiness I’d been meditating on, but you really have no idea what books are talking about until you experience it yourself. And then you want to throw the book away.

I don’t remember the drive home or really very much of the couple of weeks immediately after, except that I no longer had any motivation to do anything, continue with school, meditate, seek anything at all either worldly or spiritual. I was stunned, in a state of shock basically. Why bother doing anything? It didn’t matter. The world had no meaning whatsoever. I’d seen it with my own eyes. What kept that new abysmal attitude from being despair was the peace I felt, which was even in my body. Everything was still, quiet, peaceful, and it didn’t feel bad. I could just ride to death that way.

I remember I was walking in a Houston park I frequented, and I’d just come out of the Rothko Chapel that sat in that park and was walking down the sidewalk beside the chapel, on a street lined with old oak trees, which formed a canopy over the street, giving such an environing beauty, and a man about my age came up to me and asked, “Are you Buddhist?” Now, this was Houston, Texas, and I was in a t-shirt and jeans, and working where I did, at Four Leaf Towers, I was clean cut in appearance. In other words, there was no reason for him to stop me and ask that question, and it was more than a little odd he did. It was actually a bit extraordinary, but to you who’ve just heard the story behind it, it might not seem so, but understand he hadn’t heard it. I stopped and came out of my slight walking reverie, looked at him and simply said, “No, I’m not Buddhist,” and I walked on so as not to engage in conversation. He said after me, “You look Buddhist,” obviously a little disappointed I didn’t want to speak. He’d asked me that because saw the peace. It was, like I said, even in my body and its movements, not only on my face.

I continued going to my Greek class, but I stopped meditation and spiritual practice, and and reading therein, although I remained a vegetarian, and I didn’t smoke any weed, didn’t dare, afraid I might bounce back into the state, as, since it’d happened, I’d done some bouncing back down there, and I say down there because it’s like at the bottom of your consciousness, or the basis really, and everything, all objects, have been removed, why it’s described as raw, empty awareness, when everything in your consciousness is gone, and you’re left with only awareness. I cannot answer why, if that’s the case, I shook myself out of it when the kundalini begin to rise (I mean, who did that if there was no I?), but there’s a mystery to the state no one can describe; you’re not there but some memory or habit of you is, or something like that.

And it’s necessary to mention that, like each person has a unique experience of ego consciousness, so too it seems we have of enlightenment, and there are aspects of the state other than emptiness and peace, ananda (utter joy) and a compassionate identity with everything for example, and there is more in that store. I guess I was orientated to emptiness because that’s what I focused on in my practice, as that’s what was in the book, but the next time I was to experience it, in a lucid dream, where it’s easier to get into, it was the ananda that took the helm, and I can only say that it was more present to my experience than the world to try to give some picture of its intensity, but the emptiness and peace was still present, in the background, and the state ended upon awakening.

Anyway, immediately after my first experience of it, I only knew it as emptiness that robbed the world completely of meaning. I believe I was about to quit school, quit everything, when I returned to my efficiency apartment in the Montrose area of Houston and flopped down on my bed. Those apartments bear some description, as they were not exactly the most conducive to spiritual practice, although the manager had promised me that it would be a nice, quiet place. It’d been closed down because of the selling of drugs and prostitution, but, now under new management, things would be much different he told me. They were not at all. In the year I lived there, the cops raided apartments a few times, and twice dead bodies were taken out of it—overdose. The outside of the apartments had a front that kind of reminded you of the Alamo, except it didn’t come up to a rounded point. Hype Park Apartments they were called, and the manager, an older gentlemen that’d taken a fancy to me as a manager in the apartments on Old Galveston Road, where I’d experienced Supermind, talked me into going with him, as he’d been offered there in Montrose a job as manager. I went because the apartments were across the street from Half Price Books, where I was going as often as I could, I explain in other writings. He didn’t offer me the moon, and what he did offer me, that quiet place, didn’t happen, but I’ll be damned if the full moon didn’t happen. That means, of course, that it did.

I didn’t put anything on it.
I didn’t priori.
I just experienced it.
You would not would give me credit for a brush with the Silence.

I was there.
It rolled me over.
I almost crashed on myself.
It was so far beyond us it’s not even funny.
I’m scared of it today.
It just swallows you whole.

It’s incredibly difficult to bear,
reality after the experience.
You don’t know what to make of reality.
You don’t even know it’s there.
What an illusion you see in front of you,
convicted by the Silence.

I don’t know how to handle it
explaining it to you.
My God this is deep.
You’ll just shrug your shoulders
and pass it off as experience
with a big question mark on it,
or you’ll nod your head:
I know what he’s talkin’ about;
wow it sure is heavy;
I’ve had it my mind too.
Okay ego I’m sorry,
This is beyond your experience.
No you have not.
Oh no you have not.

This is beyond your ken.
It’s bigger than yourself.
You wouldn’t understand it.
It goes past the boundaries of physical thought.
It doesn’t fit into reality that has principle players.
It’s got wheels on it
so far blow you away.
The world has become a foreign planet.
You’re not thinking in there.
You’re wide open silence.

I don’t know how you’re lookin’ because there’s no you lookin’.
The intensity will wash away time.
You’re like a blanket slate,
and you know you’re enlightened.
Those are the shoes you wear,
and they hold fast.

Tell me I’m wrong.
I just had some raw experience.
Computation some,
and we’ll find the trigger for it in the brain,
and we’ll find the chemical goes in the brain,
that make this feel like happenin’.
We’re all over the place,
and we’re bound to get there too,
just give us some time.
We’ll find it.

And that’s how we rule life,
convincing you
science is right there behind you
about to discover somethin’.
We don’t know about this.
We’re afraid to admit it.
It doesn’t come up in our vocabulary a lot.
We don’t know how to say it.
We just throw it away.

And we’ve spoken existence in a bottle.
The bottle experience enlightenment.
My God it’s big.
You’re suddenly floatin’ in infinite space.
There are no boundaries
in the silence in your mind.
You’re just there
bigger than thought.

Now what do we do with people who experience it?
Obviously some do.
I think the numbers are growing.
It’s on the globe.
It will get noticed one day.
It will become a thing.
That’s where we’re goin’.
We’re headed there.

I don’t know who turns it off,
but it won’t be welcome received.
I think there’s plans against it
already.
I don’t know who oppose it
among our kind.
A cabal of snakes consider rule the world certainly do.
They’re on it,
makin’ everything so mundane,
our stories, our time.

No one every changes consciousness in the movies do they
to become an enlightened being?
Super strength,
mental power,
how come they don’t talk about enlightenment?
Why are the superheroes so human?
And you swallow it like a piece of cake.
Those kinds of ruptures in the field of consciousness,
Ben 10,
and you’d be a basket case.
Yah hear what I’m sayin’?

Those kinds of superpowers
are just for the movies.
They don’t show you real,
and yes we can walk on water,
above the enlightened mode,
and just be a walkin’ miracle.
I’m gettin’ ahead of myself.
You’re robbed of sleep.

Listen they won’t tell you enlightenment because it’s there,
and if they try to figure it,
it’s flat on the ground,
just another superhero with an attribute.
The others aren’t strivin’ for it.
Hey kids bring my chocolate.
Ain’t that special.

We’ve read enlightenment,
and you’ve just put it in your pocket.
I don’t know how to tell you it’s real,
the thing we strive for
in stages now.
How do you do this?

I’m workin’ on it today.
Can you clear your mind of everything
and walk around like that?
Focused and concentrated
on everything you do
so far so God.
That takes care of the representation,
and you’re not God.
You’re lookin’ at God,
so you stay out of head swells.
God’s everywhere you see.
Do you see ‘im?

Do you want to?
Okay just figure the Absolute,
bare, bottomless reality.
Just don’t sit there and think
with your hands on the world.
Try to get out of thought,
but don’t give up the ship.
Your tasks are important.
Make them the ultimate reality,
and the people in front of you,
and give that to your dog,
and don’t hold back.
They absolutely love it.
You’d have to list more than my words do.
It’s everything in the world you see,
focused and concentrated on it
as though it’s the world.

Are you understandin’ my science?
Put it there.
You’re bound to come around
to episodes of Silence eventually.
We want this permanently turned on.
How do we do that?
Can someone in the audience tell me?
I’m workin’ on that now.

I’m right here,
and I’m in a lot of places
in the rounds of my speak,
in the notions I present,
in the time I give you,
in the time I gave you.
This is my time on earth.
I’ve just mentioned enlightenment.

The presentation of a rocky road,
this is clearcut and easy,
and I’ll sell you some land in Iowa
on the beachfront.
Listen to me kids,
hard.
It’s your thesis for a doctorate in life.

I don’t know how it appears to you.
Wham! I’m enlightened with some people,
and I wasn’t even lookin’ for it.
Now that shows.
I think it’s the most published paper,
instant enlightenment.
If you’re studying for it it’s disappointing.
When’s it gonna come for you?
Just keep studying.
I think the problem’s the method and material.

I’ve solved some practical cuffs.
I hold it in front of my house.
I have to master the reality in front of my face
and quiet it down.
No monk is necessary.
I can be a businessman
or a factory worker
or a concierge
or a housewife,
a handyman.
I can be a soldier.
You study in your room
all day long,
all night long.

Your room is what holds you together.
It’s not necessarily a physical space.
It’s where you reside.
There’s the world out there.
I’m in my world in here.
You carry your room wherever you go,
even into our common room
I’ve been talking with you in.

Enlightenment closes doors.
You don’t always reach for somethin’ that makes you feel good.
You have to close some doors for good.
You learn silence in your mind
an unperturbed heart,
a colorful stomach
that won’t bother you,
and genitals that don’t cry.
Man, that’s hard.

You’re studyin’ enlightenment.
You just keep goin’ with it.
I’ve given you all these reflections.
I think the subject’s exhausting.
I don’t think we ever put it down.
Even drunk we study those effects
on your possibility to rise.
Gettin’ some,
the sexual delight of another person,
we put it there too.
Can I get out of this?
This must be union with God.
You do your treatment
no matter what vice has got you,
and you’ll learn to let it go.

Preferably you’re not caught by vice.
These are preliminaries.
I have to tell yah they’re not.
It takes so long to overcome the world,
more to overcome yourself,
and vice will just become your reaction table
to stimulus.
You get rid of it.
You really get picky fine tune.

Lost in it,
it’s not going to put it over there.
You’re on the outside.
You don’t get there easily from there.
Like you gave me a task,
the inner poise.
Can somebody just come up and kill it?
We’re a letter away,
and we get into that get rid of me field.
What ego,
what snakes have been put in it.
There’s somethin’ else.
I don’t count an accident.
I just keep going with enlightenment.

You see my ways and means?
They’re not usual.
You just keep goin’
until mastery finds you.
How can you be enlightened before enlightened?
I don’t get it.
Let’s not be too strict on ourselves.
The consciousness is the key.
Don’t be interrupted,
and don’t let interruptions stop you.

There are no moral tales here.
You wanna calm down,
make peace.
You’re listening to this in your mind
silence concentrated.
It goes to God,
the source behind silence,
intensity’s rainbow.

Dry your eyes.
You’ve found a friend.
Enlightenment can talk to you
from the minds of God,
talk to you every single day.
My muse is
almost constant.
Nice to meet you.
Learnin’ this has taken decades.
Wow, the fruit of the room.

Voices talkin’ to my head,
imagine,
doin’ that for me:
writing the world down on paper.
It’s hallelujah glory,
and it’s strong.
You don’t know the availabilities of time.
They’re on the inside, you know?
We can find them.

We can find that cartoon,
enlightenment.
The Eastern whatever it is
takes us on the road.
Beautiful, ain’t it?

I’m a thick soup.
I thought that was an accomplishment.
I have to ever let go I’m sorry.
I have to study reality.
It always throws a curve ball
that I have to negotiate,
I’m negotiating now.

First choice,
who do you have?
Some nice warm human being,
or a lop-eared dog.
Could be your television show.
Give it to me.
You can’t have it.
I hear a voice,
and it won’t leave me alone,
and it’s the proper entertainment.
They just tell me I’m sorry,
there’s so much to say.

I think we’re gonna go to a narrow canyon over there.
Challenge with love,
with this far,
and not
they’re not gonna make it.
It takes a let go.
I’m a friend
in the most unlikeliest places.
He never
this is just grab ahold.
Enlightenment has you for its supper.
வணக்கம்.

Nothing,
don’t kick it over.
All the interrogators,
like counting the walls session.
It was really peaked Bruno,
the sequence of enlightenment.
I was there.
I experienced it.
It showed me the world
fine tuned.
It was the sequence of enlightenment.

I don’t know how to do it.
The Earth Mother’s in love you too.
This extra high in this game,
they don’t falter.
We’ve got your street books,
and no one knows what they’re talkin’ about,
sellin’ inevitable rise we find ourselves in.

A purpose behind human existence, no—
so science says.
It’s hidden.
It’s not around us.
See.
You know where enlightenment is?
Where to find human existence?
There’s a purpose behind life.
It figures there,
and we’ve found human.
Come and see.

That’s the mirror,
one that takes us even higher.
that takes us to the end of the world,
and this is no cataclysm stop.
It’s an embodied being paradise
checking out of bodies
and where worlds stand,
and getting bigger than that.
What a lovely end
to terrestrial existence.
We will arrive there eventually
in huge distances of time.

We have enlightenment,
and we’ve evolved out of the animal.
There’s Supermind,
and we don’t stop there.
We get bigger all the time.
We really do.

As the first step out of the animal
see enlightenment.
See it plainly.
I’ve shown it to you.
A gathered garden in the fabric of reality,
went through a photograph.

Do you know what that means?
Cancel it
with your rough cherry picker.
Put spiderwebs all over the city,
and that draws the crowd,
some version of Spiderman.
Pani puri daddy,
bring us to the wall and let us adapt.
It’s not a big problem.
Throw off the yoke of science
and read your bored everyday
you’re looking for enlightenment.

Next post:

Chapter 11

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 9

The Back of the Bus

Too old to be told they say, but that’s not true. I grew up hearing about the fights surrounding desegregation busing on the news, and when I got older and found out what busing actually was, because as a kid if I were told what it was, it just went into one ear and out the other, I thought it was such an imposition upon the White schools, so unnatural, so forced, echoing the opinion of my elders, which they voiced to the TV many times. As a young man in the army I thought all the fuss about equal opportunity was unnecessary (it was the 80s for God’s sake) and affirmative action outright reverse discrimination. So when I was a doorman at Four Leaf Towers and worked the west tower 7 to 3 shift, something I only did a few times, since I worked the east tower, I took the opportunity to ask the concierge about it, and I’m sorry I forget his name.

He was the most senior employee among the staff and was talkative and easy going but very vocal about discrimination in regards to being Black. He had a funny figure the way his hips stood out from the rest of his body, not a result of being fat but because this was the way he was built, which matched perfectly with his effeminate manner. He spoke with a ‘Black’ accent but not in ebonics, and he giggled a lot but could get dead serious when the situation called for it. He got that way when I asked him to explain why blacks felt they were being constantly discriminated against. He was not offended in the least, however, was happy to explain why, but instead of talking, he told me to wait a bit. What could that mean I thought? Little did I know it happened so much around there to him all we had to do was wait a few minutes.

It wasn’t long before we saw a well dressed, White man walking to the lobby from the outside. He told me to go and stand by the door on the opposite side of the lobby from where the man was coming, not to go and open the door for him because he wanted to show me something. He said to stand so the man could see me, and he stood up from inside his octagon desk, where he could be seen clearly from the waist up. The desk was very visible and in the center of the large lobby. We both wore a dark blue suit and red tie, the uniform of the doorman and concierge. He said to watch what the man does. The man walked in, looked at the concierge standing behind the desk smiling an inviting, ‘may I help you?’ smile, the one obviously in charge, and then he looked at me, the White person, the one obviously just the doorman, and he walked all the way across the lobby to speak to me. I referred him to the concierge.

After the man left, he asked me how I’d feel if something like that happened several times a day; how would that make me feel about myself he stressed. He said he knew the man didn’t mean to treat him of no account, and that he probably wasn’t even aware he was being racist, but that’s the way it usually is. He explained that discrimination wasn’t always of the outright variety, was most often not something people even knew they were doing, and it was that kind that got to you because, slight though a single instant of it was, it was constant enough to cut slowly but surely deeper and deeper into your self-image. He pointed out the same thing happened almost every time a White person came there for the first time. He asked me to imagine daily life among a White majority, going shopping, to restaurants, the movies, wherever, and then he brought the point home by bringing in employment, how many Whites would just naturally choose a White over a Black, without even thinking, without feeling the slightest bit of racism.

To solve the problem of unconscious, or even conscious, racism, however, we’ve done what we always do: enact laws that address specifics of the problem and punish individual violations of them, the hydra approach, because, as many instances of racism that we punish, more occur. The roots of the problem are hardly even seen let alone dug out and removed.

Many years later, living in India the only White person in the neighborhood and getting that same kind of treatment every time I turned around too, although I have the added baggage of being a foreigner to boot, I’ve come to understand the fundamental problem in a different light, one that concierge couldn’t see because he saw in terms of right and wrong, of morality, naturally because he was being treated badly. At first I too saw the people discriminating against me as bad, but then I began to realize how human it is to hate or fear people of a different race or culture, as I’ve said earlier, and, able to see it in that light, as the natural way the ego reacts to people not of its group, because it’s been conditioned to react that way, since it’s taught to identify first with its own group, I’ve come to realize the only way to heal that is by making integration a part of the transcription of every human ego so that the child, from the time they can distinguish differences in people, which is very young, learns to identify themselves with humanity first and foremost and with their particular group, be that a race, religion, nation, or what, second. If you think about it, there really is no other way, and that, in terms of good and evil, it’s for goodness’ sakes.

While it’s possible to try to teach some watered down version of this in the schools, of most democratic countries at least, where learning to see people of a different race, gender, religion or whatnot, are equal to you in terms of citizen rights, human rights and the right to self-determination, which would be taught right alongside the 3 R’s, the obstacles to implementing the humanity first ideal are insurmountable at this present time, nationwide being impossible enough, worldwide not even thinkable, as I think anyone can see. Imagine all evangelical Christians and patriotic Americans, or all Muslims, Jews, and Hindus for that matter, teaching their infants and children they are human beings first and Christians, Americans, Muslims, Jews, Hindus or whatever, second. The Devil you say.

Citywide, however, it’s possible to begin right this minute, with the kids being born now, but not in any regular city where the people have come to live for the usual reasons, to be safer, to live in a nicer place, to make a better or easier living, etc. It would have to be a city where the people have come as pioneers of human unity first and as creatures of comfort second, a city created and set aside for that purpose, to achieve that aim. There is such a city on our planet, Auroville, India, where this narrative is moving, slow, like the growth of trees upon the land.

At this moment in the narrative, however, we return to Safed, where the line between Jew and non is about to be drawn more definitively. As I’ve mentioned, I was sleeping outside, now out of the cemetery and in the little square Moshehiem’s apartment and Avraham’s gate opened onto, behind a little clump of bushes along a wall. I was perpetually hungry, and I think by this time I’d quit the back-breaking hauling stones out of old houses job. I really don’t remember how or what I was eating, only that on this particular Shabbis, my third or fourth one there, my last one actually, I was particularly hungry and was so looking forward to the Saturday feast. I was delighted when I got a special invite for the Friday evening meal from the expat American married couple that lived in an apartment next door to Avraham, the man one of the three men at the fountain who dressed me down about the Hitler poem. I figured with this invitation all was now well. It was at his apartment, and it was a modest meal I shared with he and his wife, her nephew, a little boy about nine, and his best friend from high school, who had come to visit from America, one of the people there exploring their Jewish identity, but that wasn’t the only identity of his he was exploring.

I remember him at the afternoon show and tell in the studio courtyard the day before. He appeared to be trying to make himself look much smaller than he was, and much younger than his 20 years, sitting in the chair the way a child would and holding onto a teddybear. The only thing missing was the thumb in his mouth. I forget what he said, only that it was all to make us think of him as a child and not as an adult, which was to get everyone to accept his love for little boys, but that didn’t become apparent to me until that dinner the next day when, as we were waiting to eat, he was rubbing the little nephew’s back as the boy lay on his stomach, running his fingers through his long payot (sidelocks), what he was doing when I came in, what it appeared he’d done all night, as he’d slept beside the boy there on the floor. I could smell the sexual desire, and when he suddenly goosed him between the legs, grabbing his package from behind, I could see it. The boy yelled, “Hey!” for his part, but I could tell this wasn’t the first goose, and the young man gave a faked devilish laugh and went back to safer territory the boy was more comfortable with, but I ascertained the boy had had a handful night.

I could sense the couple was not comfortable with all this, and he sensed it too, and as a way of trying to have them make some sense out of this, he got up and went up to the young woman and told her how wonderful it was he’d made such a deep bond with her nephew in so short of time. I about choked when he said that, thinking how immature and see through was his attempt at manipulating the people around so he could hook into the little boy. She didn’t say anything. When I left after dinner so did he, and I overheard his friend tell him he was to sleep at so and so’s house, not there, but there wasn’t any mention of why or any sound of disapproval or disgust in his voice. The separation was as much to protect the young man as it was the boy. I could sense the bewilderment of this man, who’d learned this unspeakable thing about his best friend, but I could also sense his concern for him.

The next day he was following the boys around as they played, looking very awkward doing so. I saw him standing on a thin concrete ledge above the now dry sewer that ran the length of the upper end of the square. He appeared very unsure of his footing. The group of boys had just ran over it without hesitation, and they didn’t wait for him, seemed not even to be aware he was there. The day before the boys had followed me being the Pied Piper as I ran the length of that ledge and expertly negotiated other obstacles around the square as though I were on an obstacle course, like a paratrooper. I’d been teaching a couple of boys who lived there the basics of meditation and pranayama, boys about ten who wanted to wake up in their dreams and such, lucid dreaming something I’d asked the about, if they did, and it happened that suddenly there was a number of boys in the square, and the Pied Piper thing just came about as I sat the two aforementioned boys down and began giving them their lesson. Curious, the visiting boys were not shy about interrupting us, and soon I’d abandoned the lesson and just played with them. With the young man on that ledge, Mr. Goose (let me call him), however, you didn’t have to use a crowbar to separate the men from the boys because the boys weren’t into him, but he so wanted them to be, as he’d seen me the day before too and wanted what they gave me, their undivided, unwavering attention.

The next day after Shabbis, he went to Jerusalem to stay at the house of the little boy who he’d made handfuls of, and I remember thinking what a wake up call that would be for that household, which had several boys, as the orthodox tend to have many kids, and what a day of reckoning it would probably be for young Mr.Goose. I doubted the father of the boy would be as concerned for his welfare as his best friend was. That the father was also the go to person for Americans who wanted to convert to Judaism, was I was told who I needed to go to if I did decide to convert, wasn’t the only connection that brought Mr. Goose’s story home to me. I sure didn’t want to arrive in that house after a nuke had gone off, the one strapped to my own back, well, that’s the thing see.

Er, ugh, so, like I said, I took the first meal Shabbis invitation on Friday evening to be a sign that all was well between me and the ‘gang’, but it wasn’t that at all but something more like a bone you’d throw to a dog so they’d not bother you begging for your food. It was an appeasement, I would be told on Saturday by Mr. Next Door (as in next door to the studio), so I’d be satisfied I’d been taken care of and not expect to come to the second meal Shabbis, which was that Saturday afternoon. Funny how his true intentions in inviting me to eat at his house, which weren’t good intentions, matched, in the weird way the universe matches this and that, the bad intentions of Mr. Goose, who’d been invited there with the best of intentions, but even if you believe things in this universe are put together consciously, it’d be hard for you to believe that bad intentions are bad intentions, whether that be to fondle a child over his trousers or invite someone to your house because you’re trying to ultimately exclude them. In other words, that all bad intentions are connected to one another and are the same in essence. You got that?

It was early Saturday afternoon, and I could tell something was up at the studio. The gate was closed and had been since I woke up. Three young British men were with me, having slept in a hostel nearby. Me? I slept in the bushes. They arrived the day before and were all beside themselves with a story of seeing a UFO in the Sinai desert. I say beside themselves, but maybe you don’t get the picture: they were unhinged. Their eyes shined with a fire of having seen something literally out of this world. I knew they were telling the truth by their unmistakable shaken look, like you know when someone’s terrified or hurt by the unmistakable note of such in their voice.

At once afraid and excited, they were people who’d had their worldview suddenly changed to include aliens upon earth and all the incredible things that suggests. They would not stop talking about it, but, lost in being Jewish or wanting to be included in being Jewish, we didn’t listen to their story, and it seems to me now the universe brought them to us to add emphasis to this story, to show us how narrow-minded we all were at that moment, myself included, although I did talk to the boys more about their encounter after hearing them tell the people in the studio who were there when they came in. I only remember it was a close encounter of the second kind, where a small glowing oddly shaped craft landed very close to them and then dashed off into the sky, leaving them stunned and unable to move for some minutes afterwards, but it was it close enough to remove any doubt of what they saw.

That afternoon, soon after the three British men arrived at the square, having spent the night in a hotel, Avraham, Mr. Next Door, and B Actor came out of the studio to talk to us, the same ones who spoke to me about the Hitler poem a couple of days earlier, although B Actor was a little behind the other two, appearing more like a tag along than who’d been elected to tell us what we were about to be told. Avraham did the talking, and it was obvious he wasn’t proud of what he had to say, and that he was struggling with it: “Hey look, we, uh, we just took a vote, and I’m sorry, but you guys can’t come to dinner this afternoon.”

“Why not? What’s going on?” I asked. I was so let down. I’d been looking forward to this meal all week watching everyone prepare for it. It was the first part of June, and the crowd of young Americans hanging out at the studio, who were mostly college kids on summer break, and a couple of recent graduates, had gotten pretty large. I knew this would be a feast.

“Like I said, we voted, and we only want Jewish people to come to the second meal this afternoon.”

As Avraham said this Mr. Next Door piped in, telling me what I’ve already explained above: “You got invited to my house last night for the first meal so that you’d be taken care of and not expect to come to the second meal too.” He said that like it was really rude of me to want to come to dinner that afternoon —the nerve of me.

Now there are times in life when you have a sense of saying things for the future, and you stand up and say them, and say them well, but here that didn’t happen. I only had the sense of saying such, not the well-spoken speech itself, but I did try. It’s always been that way with me. I’m a writer not a speaker. “What? Because we’re not Jewish? Do you know what you’re saying? Come on Avraham, you’re American. You’ve seen the movie Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.”

Avraham was uneasy, and he looked quickly at the studio gate, where he wanted to be heading right about then. “I know how this looks, but we took a vote, and I have to abide by it. People are afraid that if you are there, well, they won’t feel comfortable to express their Jewishness.”

“And you have your own spirituality, and it’s strong, and we don’t want anything to get in the way of ours.” That was B Actor. That was the main reason, I surmised.

“What about these guys? Why them too?” I asked, motioning to the three Brits.

“We decided only Jews.” Avraham said. How everyone knew they weren’t Jewish I don’t know. That must’ve been a question, covert or otherwise, they got asked the night before, and the answer had gotten around. If you would ask me what’s wrong with that because this was Israel, I’d tell you that’s what wrong with Israel: the overriding importance placed on being Jewish, to the exclusion of others.

If I had been aligned with the cosmos at that moment, or, to sound less new agey, with what would be the most interesting dinner conversation around, I’d have pointed out that the three young gentlemen had a story to tell at the dinner table well worth hearing, and wasn’t it interesting they were there with it at the moment non-Jews were being excluded, like as if to say, “Hey, let’s not only exclude non-Jews, but let’s shut out the universe too while we’re at it?” But I was as lost in being excluded as they were in being Jews. I can, however, point that out now.

“What did you vote Avraham?”

“I agree with this, but not everybody does. The ones that don’t have made arrangements for you all to come after everyone has left and eat your fill.” I was surprised to hear he was among the people voting us out. I don’t think he was comfortable with his vote, but he’d opted to be part of the crowd and was going with it despite his reluctance.

“But you invited us last night, why we’re here now, to come to dinner,” one of the Brits threw in.

“Yeah I know, and I’m sorry, but this morning people objected to you guys coming, and there was a long argument, and so we took a vote,” Avraham said.

“Wait a minute. Something doesn’t fit because last night I got invited to the first meal Shabbis, as I’ve just been told, so I wouldn’t expect to come to the second meal, and so what’s the deal?” I was trying to point out that the exclusion had been pre-planned.

“We just don’t want any gentiles, and that’s that.” Avraham was obviously finished.

I argued more, but to no avail. We were told what time to come and told not to come before then, and the three walked back to the studio. Disappointed I’d have to wait until 10 p.m. to eat, but thankful I’d at least get to, I went to sit down at the fountain and just wait. Being excluded was par for the course for me there in Safed. The three Brits mumbled something about Jews being clannish and this being bullshit and walked off. When they’d arrived at the studio the night before, telling anyone who’d listen about their close encounter, they’d been invited to the second meal by not only Avraham, but others too, so to share their strange story. It got untold.

If anybody that voted that morning to exclude us because we weren’t Jews were to be asked today, it’s doubtful any one of them would own up to it, and I base that on virtually everybody’s reluctance to admit they are racist, even most neo-Nazis and White supremacists. When you combine that with our almost universal unwillingness to admit we’re wrong when we really are, and with our tendency to refuse to concede to an opposite point of view even when presented with concrete facts proving it, or tendency to become even more obstinate with our wrong view actually, you can bet the voters in this racist election won’t admit they cast votes to exclude us.

Whomever asked about it might use the reason I’ve just revealed to you about myself, that nuke on my back, but that wasn’t something they knew at the time, although I’m sure it entered the minds of the people watching me play so freely with the boys in the square on Thursday. In short, it wasn’t on the table with this crowd. And besides, Mr. Goose got not only to go to dinner but a place to sleep, and it was on the table with him. Yes, there was some controversy because of the Hitler poem, but there was no question of me being anti-Semitic or anything of the kind. This was about being someone with a spirituality stronger than their own, and I’m speaking about personal inner and mystical experience, and with a creativity flowing from that alive and kicking, those things more than I wasn’t a Jew, but the Brits would say it was because we weren’t Jewish, and that is the main thing on the table here, being excluded because we weren’t Jews.

At 10 p.m. we were waiting at the gate, and it opened for us. Avraham ushered us in but then made himself scarce. We ate the leftovers in the dark, as the lights had been turned off, but you could still see. And we ate in a relative silence, only speaking about how good the food was. No talk of the out of this world, unfortunately. The meal had been buffet style. There was one small table with dishes of food on it and a longer one where the people ate, and a couple of smaller empty tables behind. This had been a big dinner. I gathered about 20 or so people had eaten. We didn’t serve ourselves but were served by the three or four dissenters to the vote, served like we were important people they respected and admired, and in telling this story through the years I’ve said that’s the way it is with Jews: if some Jews do you wrong because you aren’t Jewish, other Jews will come along to try and make it right, and what’s different about that in the other peoples on this earth is that with Jews you’ll almost always have the ones trying to make it right right there within the same group that’s doing you wrong. That’s a generalization I know, maybe not even correct, but it’s become part of this story because that’s how I’ve told it since it happened. Let me just say thank you to the kind people that sacrificed to serve us.

I will tell you all the rules when outcasting these people.
Drop in
a sister’s pain.
It was deliberate and actual.
She threw him out the window,
and years he’s been sitting at the fire
tryin’ to make sense of it.
It’s mean.
She even has her daughter on the report.

It’s vocabulary for everybody.
It just hurts, you know?
No one cares.
They just reject you,
like you’re some changeling in their midst,
like you’re a monster.

Just stop a moment and think,
Gwen,
do you ride the world this way?
Are you taller than trees?
Is this the good in you?
And can you tell me why you’re doing it?
I don’t understand,
what’s society got to do with this?
That’s who you propose is true?
What’s it about you?
What are you doing?

Please tell me
I can lay my head on your shoulder.
Do you know the moon?
Show the world you’re not some redneck from Texas.
Be my friend.
Be good to me
Gwendolyn Gaye Duke.

No don’t brag about this,
but I think of you often.
I just don’t know how to include you in my life.
How can we be brother and sister?
How can you even like me?
I’ve done you wrong,
as hurtful as I can do that.
I’ve even threatened to put you behind bars,
if you should just try and talk to me.


Why did you have to go and be some security blanket for the world?
Why did you have to stand up and sing?
It makes me look so bad,
and I handle it with care.
No one talks about it around me.
Oh man I’m sorry.
What am I supposed to say?
That worms,
so I just sit here and count dimes till the end.

What do I do with you?
Of course you make my smile
when I,
when I practice childhood with you
in my mind’s eye.
How do you throw a brother away?
Worse,
how do you dig him out of the trash?

Okay people I’m responsible.
I did this to my brother and see
I will official him again.
I will be there for him when he needs me.
I will do what’s right.
These are starting on my lips.

I’m on my way.
Do you hear me Gwen?
It’s time to overcome now
the points you had with me taking over,
stealing your mother’s love,
being a boy in the room,
when sisters are not allowed
because they’re girls.
I blamed you for the failure
of being a girl instead of a boy.
This is quite animal.
Disappointed, stagnated, stand up.
We need to redeem girls, don’t we?
let them have the world in their hands like boys do.

I don’t know how to start this.
I don’t know how to make it right.
I just know we need it,
and it’s coming.
In the meantime,
Gwen,
don’t blame me for the war.
I am not the one who caused it.
I just sat there,
a little boy in my mother’s lap in love with her.
I just didn’t know it hurt you.
I couldn’t see you there.
I was just a kid.
That’s all I have to say.
Do you need me?
It’s on the way.
Let’s fight this thing.
I’m comin’.

Endure all these stabs in the heart
from my world and my family.
They don’t even hesitate.
I get rid of…
I don’t know what to do with these feelins’.
They hurt me.
They go round all the time.
They happen all the time.
They don’t even think about it.
It’s automatic for them,
the outcast mode.

Society allows this,
encourages it.
It’s what makes it mean.
I’ve Heard the Crawdads Sing doesn’t do it,
a Me Too statement
science made—
kill somebody
and don’t even feel a thing
what’s yah doin’?
No one knows the story of outcast.
They make movies they don’t believe in.
Write books they’re not sure of.
And they would outcast me too.

We shake up underdogs,
like they’re special,
talk about them all the time,
especially in children’s literature,
their movies and things,
and we go to town for them,
bring them into you,
make them heroes,
and we don’t believe a word of it,
are confused over what it means,
can’t quite grasp its concept,
don’t even know what to do with it.
We just put people down
when we meet them in real life,
the underdog, the outcast.
We can’t seem to understand
they wear different clothes each time,
and society is not true to itself:
outcast might mean somethin’ else tomorrow.

Do you even know what you’re doin
puttin’ us in the outcast pen’?
Do you even care?
I’m here to warn you:
you’re tearin’ society apart.
You’re being loyal to your animal rage.
You’re actually bein’ immoral.
How do we show you this?
You will not let us speak.
You’ve just shut us off.
It’s a crime, you know?

It’s equity, you know?
what’s missin’ with you.
You would be safe and sorry.
You will not risk a thing.
You don’t know what it means to love
someone you don’t have to.
You can’t grasp love—
a noble idea,
but you can’t seize it.
It’s not just something you declare,
like Ari says it is.
No, you feel it
in every situation,
because it’s how you encounter the world,
and you’ve done the work to evolve that.
It’s such hard work.
You find the shop there:
you have to put it on everything in your day.
Try it on for size,
and your shortcomings you study.
They reveal yourself.

This is not wide open to the world
to just take you for a ride.
You love.
It’s never let people harm you,
or take advantage of your things
to the point you lose.
You have to be wise.
You have to know how to play.
It comes and goes.
You get stronger at it,
and faced with someone like me,
whom everybody hates.
you love.

And that brings society together.
You’ve passed the test.
You are your brother’s keeper,
your sister’s righthand smile.
You’ve saved the world here.
Do you know love will solve the world?
That’s equity.
That’s how we deal each other.
That’s how we make it right.
And even the climate’s better.
And even nuclear disarmament’s happened.
And we have world peace,
everywhere.

I really hate these shoes.
They don’t fit my feet,
and they cause blisters,
everyday.
That’s society
in its lower parts.
We can do nothing about that.
Until you try.
We’ve have to give them the example
in the press
and on equity’s base.
We do have better parts, don’t we?
Can’t you even try?

You had to go and get the world by the tail,
you had to be a speaker for humanity,
to even bring this up,
to even bring this up.
To the bullpen,
I’m gettin’ there.
You’ll have to listen to me.
There’s we lose society
if you don’t.

I’m a wide speaker.
I can bring people together.
I know how that works.
I know how divine it is,
and I know its power.
Can I introduce it to you?
You think you have it.
You don’t know the sacrifice it means.
It’s got horns.
It puts you in the way with people,
makes you vulnerable,
tests your limits.
It’s not easy,
but we break apart without it,
I mean as a world,
a society.

You can see the fractures now.
Don’t trust anybody.
Kill anybody that laughs at you.
Make a mistake,
and the hounds are on you,
to the fullest extent of the law.
We just break here.
It’s time we got smart,
took love out of the cupboard
(oh those silly 60s)
and healed people with it,
applied it to society
in very practical terms.
We make it rule our hands and feet,
garden our minds,
have it control our mouths.
It’s the thing in the room
we constantly refer to.
It’s the basis of our acts,
and I’m not talking blind.

We do what needs to be done
to protect ourselves,
to protect our mistakes.
We can’t go there.
Imaginary self-defense
invaded Russia,
and the vast majority of a great and powerful nation,
so sophisticated,
charged that into invading Ukraine.
Unbelievable the size of it,
the lack of love.
Do you see that?
Can you see that?
I’m talking to Russia.
Scapegoats one and all,
Ukrainians.

I’ll be back in a minute.
I’ve got to hang out some clothes
and other speedy deliveries for my family.
That’s what I’m doin’ doin’ poetry,
publishin’ a book,
a lot of housework,
where I take care of people and their things,
It’s a large house,
full of people and dogs,
and they call me daddy around here,
and I have a large family,
so loveful, at times so uneasy. [heard sung]
She went to say watch
she was Heavenly pulled.
Oh by the way,
I clean my own bathroom.
So this is founded on stuff,
the nitty gritty of life’s room,
and I am sorry,
but the stuff comes first
around here.

Every shirt I could breathe,
my chores,
you know Douglas.
He’s my friend,
like a…
like we’re married.
It makes the day go by kind,
and we sure do love each other,
no gay involved.
He’s the actor in the room
the friend,
the incredible, amazing friend.

And I’m giving you the facts straight.
There’s the welcome:
dial 9.
It’s got some kidney power.
Bring the dog along.
Contrary to doctrine
that doesn’t like children,
if you get distracted,
there’s the Messiah there.
He’s nice and warm.
That’s your fingers on ice
not bein’ a mean to people,
and you’re the Messiah.
How powerful that is
when applied to everyday life.
The Messiah settings,
I don’t see here the crawdads and the frienddogs sing.
Wait counsel.
Eventually everyone will be the Messiah,
although you are free to go.
I did this
in my own yard.
I was wide open.

How much gas is in my car?
No it is not illegal.
I got free spoken of her so much.
Why didn’t you go with him?
I don’t know how to make it right,
not to mention,
that notion
is whimsically laid out.
It’s the Messiah man.
You can’t finish it
and apply it
on a cold and grey Chicago morn
another little baby child is born
in the ghetto,
and his momma cries. [this and above three lines sung by Elvis]
Do you have teeth?
Just throw this off the bus.
It’s Rembrandt.
We believe its existence.
We know it’s there.
We can’t get under it.
I’m right behind you.
I stand on wheels.
I’m the end of racism.
I’m love, you understand?
I’m really here.
Just ask your heart.
It’s got school in it,
and there it is on your table.
Well let’s get goin’.

Let’s splash down in this water once more
and look at the victim in the room.
They’re there as originally supposed:
they’ve been hurt.
The question of the ages:
what do we do on their behalf?
We don’t get revenge.
This is horrible on society.
It destroys us,
keeps us mean and hateful people,
is barbaric.
We have to help them.
We have to take their hand.
We need to protect them.
We need to validate their experience.
We need to give them room to breathe.

The only way to heal is through the victim
fall in this hole on the ground,
and take the victimizer in their arms and pray.
No, not that Europe.
They’d have to learn a lesson.
They’d have to learn
that victimizer is in trouble.
Do you see it?
They don’t let him off scot-free,
but we have institutions now to heal them,
and they’d come together Norway,
put in jail in lovely places
and fellowed,
brought back into the fold
with gentle hands and loving eyes.
We have angels for this,
people put through soul force to get there.

Wait a minute,
they are certainly greased,
made to feel their wrong,
put in positions to see that
in the time they are cuffed,
Positions that do not harm them,
but show them their weakness,
why they kill,
why they rape,
why they bring harm to people.
Maybe that’s out of doors in wilderness brought back to bear,
if we understand the institution’s
not a building housed.
Why would he have roles if he didn’t have a victim?

This is not a boneyard.
It’s not a rub your nose in it please.
I feel so guilty
I’ll do it again.
But they need to see the pain.
They need to see it plainly,
how it hits their lives and hurts them too.
That’s the connection made.
That’s what we get them to see.
Not with the mask
of they are jailed for that,
put in nice prisons.
This is in their very lives.
They’ve caused harm to someone-themselves.
This is an inner journey,
soul searching.
They need to see they hurt themselves.
Who knows the function of dreams?
They’re there for the taking,
and here they bring a lot.
That man,
that woman,
begins to investigate themselves.
We have time.
They’re in prison,
some beautiful square walls
that make inner learning easy.
Beauty surrounds them
and people who are not offended by them.
They’re there to help.
The factor involved is not a stretch,
a time term.
It’s their record of healing.

Okay how do we do that
in a society of hate and mean?
The world’s gonna change you know.
We will become a nation
of lovers of other nations,
until we lose that political boundary,
and people’s populate the planet
into one another.
You, see the direction.
What government might there be wrong?
This will evolve to show,
so wrong doesn’t come.
We’re lookin’ at the future.
We hug these ideas today.

We’ve come a long ways,
haven’t we,
from the victim’s needs?
No, we’ve brought them home.
They’ve been vindicated,
given their due,
put in the right place:
now I understand school.
I really do.
Time teaches them this
without the victimizer.
They need to heal.
Left to themselves
they crumble,
they falter,
they stumble.
We can help them,
and it’s part of society’s plan
communicate
with the perpetrator in the room.

You wouldn’t see them at first.
You would have be prepared for that.
You would go through your trauma.
You would see it.
You would learn it’s not you.
They soul is inviolate.
Don’t hit the lady,
force ‘em to hear it.
How do you explain movies to children?
And that’s the star of our role:
we are actors on a stage the poets have told us.
This is how we heal.
Seein’ that reality
we come along fine.

I’m writing in a tactical attitude that has a historical basis,
and we look at books now,
the one I’m writing now.
I can write on and on and on
to get you in the breeze so you can hear me.
I’ve touched your most precious subjects,
and I will continue.

I’m spanking you hard, aren’t I?
This is not the ideal’s lair.
I’m putting practicality in your hands.
That’s why it smarts so.
I touch bottom.
Can you gather the sound of music?
It’s military, ain’t it?
I have some points to get across,
a world to change,
and let’s just get down to business, shall we?

Went higher than where our pen works,
and try it on for size.
But this is too high to raise:
supramental,
and we just slag there.
That’s the seer
on his divine ground,
where we’re goin’.
I want you to tell the truth.
On 27th
you stay here
a butterfly.
I don’t bring zero down to Earth.
I have no notion with the Antichrist.
You mean the prophet here.
The seer.

I’ve got such a sofa.
I don’t know how to write it.,
but you’re hearin’ me speak.
I will protect you
from the end of the Earth.
You can see my bargain card.
I’m an outcast wants in.
Why do you do that,
chop me in half when I ask?
You just listen to Steve,
my step-brother Steve Abbott,
who turns me away.
I think he’s read my material.
He can’t deal with it.
He doesn’t know what to say,
and I’m his brother.
This is ridiculous.
Every one of you out there
does the same thing.
Why is that?
Do I pee?
Okay let’s give racism a chance,
Is that what you’re saying?

We’re really into vegetables.
I think I should hang up the phone now,
and let you get me some sleep.
There’s enough to say
in the whole book.
I love you.
I’m not pullin’ any punches, you know?

What a surprise,
I hear from Steve.
Oh thank you Steve.
Throw any rock at me?
Okay Gwen,
this isn’t good.
I don’t understand it:
never speak to me again?
I’m Gwen,
do my M.O.
That’s stubbornness alerted itself.
Look at your
aspirations.
You want to…
You’re hurting me.
Stop racism.
You want to stop it.
I’m finished.
Do you understand?

You aren’t finished.
What have you got separations to say?
Just let me shoot yah,
put you out of your misery.
A dual piece of property
the owner
was mine—
a victim’s statement.
And I’ve told you there’s teacher.
But I think I told you this was a dream.
I’m a hustler.
I’m just tryin’ to get you to see reality.
Something more than a movie,
but can you call it?
Victims square one.
They have teeth.
We’re not allowed to brush them aside.
You have responsibility in the movie.
We’ve got things to do here.
This is not a nightclub.
It’s a representative reality school involved.
We’ve got so much to learn.
We’ve got a world to learn,
and we are here for that,
every one of us,
including you.

We’re here to learn
the notions of the universe
that have us learn God.
See here
how God sees through our eyes,
God what we’re lookin’ at.
And I’ve explained myself
and put you in the right place.
And we put this helmet on
and go to work.
Now put up with society,
everybody,
so we can get the right music.
Brother, brother, brother,
what’s goin’ on? [this and above line heard sung voice of Marvin Gaye]
A love notion.

Next post:

Chapter 10
You Can Gimmie my Car

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 8

The flyer I made for the first Garberville poetry reading

A Small Open

The day of the poetry reading at Avraham’s studio arrived. It had taken some talking let me tell you, but Avraham and the core group of American young people hanging out at his studio, about three or four individuals, finally agreed to it. Shortly after meeting Avraham, I’d given him the small stapled packet of poems I carried around and made copies of periodically, which contained around 20 poems or so. I’d taped each on the wall next to our hunger strike camp in Jerusalem, and with their strange, typed shapes they made quite a backdrop to the camp, and I taped several of them around the old city in the first ‘official’ posting, which I did with Lars, which is covered in the Tongues series. I also read a couple in that daily afternoon show and tell at the studio when I first arrived. Now I was just stupid about these poems and being a poet, had to be seen as a poet by other people. I still have the same poetic symptoms but at a higher order; I think now it’s the natural order. But still, I don’t understand what my fuss was all about, as if the ability to put words together that play with language and meaning well enough they don’t disagree makes you some degree of human out of the animal, and there’s some question at my ability in those poems to write poetry where language didn’t quarrel with meaning in the first place, but, if nothing else, they are striking.

At that moment in Safed there was a controversy going on over the use of non-Jewish religious figures, the mere mention of their names, almost a crisis really. David (I forget his last name unfortunately), was the most prominent artist in Safed, internationally recognized for his paintings of the Sefirot. I first saw him at Avraham’s studio, where a couple of his works were on display. He dressed neither orthodox nor non-orthodox if you can picture something other than either or, but you can say he dressed conservatively. What struck you was that didn’t upstage the fact there was a very unconventional person wearing the clothes. His face said it all: “My God would you look at that interesting thing over there in the world, would you look at everything by God,” what it said when you looked into his face. The keys to his shul in Safed had been taken away by its owners because he allowed the God-enthusiastic young people there to use the names of Buddha, Jesus, and others in their praises, prayers and such. When the rabbis around there heard rumors such idolatry was going on, they sent other God-enthusiatic young people, who limited God to Judaism, to infiltrate the shul. They reported back to their rabbis it indeed was happening, who had contacted the New York owners, who were appalled and took away his keys. It all had just happened before my arrival, and Avraham and the others there were worried some slip of the tongue at the studio would get them into trouble, as it was believed there were spies everywhere.

It’s a credit to Avraham and his friends that in such a climate of fear I was allowed to do a “Noise From the Innerwho” there in the first place, what, if you remember, I called my (now on the road) poetry reading I’d started in Gaberville, where I was the MC and invited anyone from the audience to read their poetry. The Safed crowd did regret it afterwards though. Avraham, who had read my poems, or so I figured, really had only read a couple or so, the above one, one of those. He asked me not to read that one or any one that used the name of non-Jewish Gods or prophets. We had a little debate over Jesus, who I argued was after all a Jew and, if nothing else, was at least a Jewish prophet, but we finally settled on a compromise. I could read The Dangle, which I really had a fancy to read, if I substituted the word mashiach for Christ.

It might interest you to know that the poem’s a gatha, what I thought at the time was what Buddhists call poems that describe momentary experiences of enlightenment, what they call ‘a glimpse of reality’, but which I’ve sense learned is a poem that describes basically anything as long as it’s mindful. That my Dangle also describes a nuclear explosion can be attributed to both the incredible intensity of such an enlightenment experience and the ability of poetry to talk about two or more things at the same time, in this case talk about too the intensity of playing around with nukes, even in practice. That the verses are in the shape of flying saucers, well, that’s a whole other thing, isn’t it? I don’t know what to tell you.

The courtyard was set up nicely for the reading, what the regulars pitched in to put together, with rows of folding chairs in front of a sort of makeshift but adequate stage, and I do believe there was a mike. I forget what advertising we’d done, other than invitation and word of mouth, but in every other Noise, making the creative flier was always a big thing for me, and so it probably was here too, only it might’ve been what was taped on the gate and not posted around because of the current controversy. We did it at night, and the stage wasn’t lit, although there were lights around the courtyard, enough so that you could see both the person on stage and the audience. I was in my element, and I was excited. I honestly don’t remember how many or who read anything of theirs, and that shows what I was showing: “Look everybody, this came outta me!” What I most remember is looking out over the audience, just after finishing the poem “The Reincarnation of Adolf Hitler”, and a young man in orthodox dress, looking like he’d gotten much more than the scoop he’d come there for, jumping up out of his seat and running out of the courtyard, obviously to report to whom sent him what was being read—“They’re bringing Hitler back to life for God’s sake!” I had a moment of nervousness but quickly recovered and continued the show, but I knew I’d hear about it after it was all over.

I’m 15, living in the suburbs of Houston with my mom and step-dad, and I’m a Jesus freak, Jesus person to you buddy. I’m at my friend’s house, eating dinner with one of the few black families in Sagemont at that time—it wasn’t fried chicken. I’m there because the father of the family is my good friend, one of the few adults who will take me seriously and not treat me like a child when I talk about the Lord and scripture. I want to be preacher, not when I grow up, but now. He’s the pastor of a church in one of the wards of Houston, ward a nicer name than ghetto for those poor, predominantly Black neighborhoods, and next Sunday he’s going to let me preach a sermon in his church, not the morning service, but the night service, but I’m so thrilled that makes no difference. I visit his house often and talk with him, and the attention he pays me, the respect, that’s what makes me come back. At my smart aleck, pimply-faced age you don’t get a lot of that. He has a son a little older than I, who’s a nerd and is into Star Trek and is building a laser for his school science project. I sit with him often on the bus in those days, and he talks about what a laser is and how hard it is to make one do more than simply shoot a straight beam of light. He wants to slice a fruit in half, an apple I think. Talking to him about it I realize he’s probably smarter than I am, despite the fact that, if I remember right, all he achieves is the beam of light. He gets off first and always gives me the Spock farewell, putting his palm up with the fingers split and saying “Live long and prosper.” As time goes on, I forget I’m sitting by the only African American on the bus, forget he’s even Black. I am sorry, but I did see he was Black when I looked at him until that indeterminable point he became my friend. Another way to say that is we notice differences between us, the bigger the difference the more we notice it, until we get to know someone and begin to care for them, and then the difference is no longer even a thing. You don’t see it anymore.

What brought that integration to my page? That 9-year-old boy who wouldn’t eat ‘nigger food’ had undergone a transformation in his intolerance of Black people. It’d come about from an inner process I can hardly guess at from this distance in time, but I’m sure my step-father Bucky had something to do with it. He’d been in my life since he became my mom’s boyfriend when I was 7, but it wasn’t until he married her, and I went to live with them in their new house in the suburbs when I was 11, that he became my dad and took the time and trouble to educate me some. I’d come from the backwoods of East Texas, and when I moved in he began to work on my ignorance.

He was from California and had a college education, really knew how to make children laugh, didn’t hit a kid or a woman, did housework, was slow to anger, a peacemaker even, and that’s odd considering he was built like a tank, 6 foot 4 or thereabouts, who played semi-pro football in the position of fullback in the army in Europe during the Korean War. Do I list his faults here too? He was also quite smart, smart enough to get out of going to Korea, which took both his brains and bronze. He went with a buddy equally as good as he was at football to where an army team was practicing on base. They got close enough so the coach could see them throwing passes and kicking punts. Bucky said he never put so much onto a football. It’s no wonder; they both had orders shipping them out to the war. The coach saw them and put them on the team.

First, Bucky got me reading more, what I’d gotten interested in doing in Jewett when the new school librarian, fresh out of college, called me, me and me alone, to the library one day to give me first chance to read a new book: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH. I guess she must’ve saw something in me no one else did at the time. That was my first book book, but I didn’t start reading another one after that, and then another one, didn’t do that mind-altering thing whereby you have the constant companion of books friending each day of your life. That’s the fire Bucky wanted to start, and to help do that, he gave me a copy of The Call of the Wild and a lot of encouragement, and then I was hooked, and from then on I had a book I was reading. The next thing he did was make a big deal every time I used a word of more than two syllables. He’d clap and carry on such that I began to make an effort to improve my vocabulary, for that validation, but it didn’t take long before I no longer wanted to sound ignorant, and I not only made an effort to use bigger words but also to get rid of the East Texas accent.

It wasn’t long before he began to work on my racism. He’d correct me when I used the word nigger, and he’d challenge my stereotypes regarding the differences between Blacks and Whites. He didn’t stop at race but defended gays as well when, as boys my age often do, I bashed fags, and he even had sympathy for pedophiles, who at that time were just becoming the undefendable monsters they are today. What he wanted me to see, or feel rather, was someone’s humanity, but he never put it in those terms, was not actually an intellectual or very sophisticated thinker, wasn’t even very sensitive, could be quite the macho male at times, especially when I ceased being a little boy and became an arrogant teenager. But Bucky’s humanity wasn’t coming from his mind, or even his heart; it was coming from his developed soul, and it had gotten to just the point of maturity where it could influence his behavior, have him respond to everyone’s humanity with his own. It wasn’t big enough yet to set his world on fire, but he helped light the fire of humanity in me.

That day after the poetry reading I was quite apprehensive, and, in the morning, when Avraham and two guys from the studio crowd came walking up to the fountain I was sitting on, which was in the center of the square in front of the studio, I figured the studio had already been visited by whomever sent the young man to the reading. They sat down around me on the circular bench it formed, the fountain dry. To my surprise no one had come but Avraham and the two men who were upset about the Hitler poem. That’s when I found out Avraham had only read a couple of the poems I gave him to read before the reading. It seemed he hadn’t even gone over the titles. The other two men lived there in Safed, but I forget their names. One lived with his wife right next door to Avraham’s in a small apartment, and I never learned where the other one lived, but he was the most vocal and conservative of the crowd there, although he wasn’t listened to much because he was a B Actor, the kind of person always in the center of things trying their best to be a mover and shaker but was never able to move or shake anything very much, that I saw at least. Give him a A for trying, and for being willing to engage me about the particulars of Judaism, and also for being a lover of God.

B Actor did most of the talking. He kept repeating that I was hurting people by reading that poem, because there were many Holocaust survivors living there. The other two agreed but said little, although Avraham piped in, in a disapproving voice, “but you did it anyway,” when the subject of not using the word Christ but mashiach came up. My defense wasn’t explaining what the poem was really about, which wasn’t Hitler. He was just the example of the most evil man in the whole world, or at least the Western world, that I was using as a stand in for me and the process of repentance I went through after being run out of Gaberville. I had this feeling I’d hit a well of world pain, and the Hitler poem just flowed effortlessly out of that. I thought at the time that was the epitome of inspiration, but I had no idea just how inspired one can be in the writing of a poem. This was before I heard the muse. The poem is about the denial of pain and deals with Holocaust denial as a result of the denial of the pain of the people who did the evil, represented in the poem as Hitler. It shows the process whereby Hitler (or me) comes to recognize that the pain he feels is the same he caused, and in that recognition, he redeems himself.

The Reincarnation of Adolf Hitler

The look of cruelty moves
from off my face
as Hitler repeats itself.
Born again of the Human Race
of which I was before,
I show you now my secret self,
the one you know as Thor.

I am quite really a made-up man,
with a hammer, and a hatchet,
and the whole damn clan,
or was, was I, way back when?
Here it is I reveal
the secret which
will make me real.

I suffer.

The pain I feel I confess
is the same within your breast.
Now sitting in the dead center
of the very cyclone
of pain itself,
I’m not mad anymore,
at anyone,
not even me.

The quiet lightening looks of blame
move from off my face
as darkness redeems itself
and lights up the whole damn sky.

B Actor and I had been having an ongoing argument about anger. It was my adamant view, expressed in the poem, that it fits into the formula of being the way we shield ourselves from pain, every single instance of anger. While he agreed we used anger to protect ourselves from pain, he was equally adamant there was a such thing as righteous anger, such as what God feels towards the wicked. As this was before I encountered the thought of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo, I didn’t have a very good sense of just how mind-boggling, multi-leveled, how infinitely varied within each level, nature is, and therefore how impossible it is to pin down to any given formula, the vast complexities of God nature especially.

There are, of course, other causes of anger and instances where it’s the right thing to feel, such as when we’re being blocked from doing something we genuinely need to do, and we use the force of anger to remove the obstacle, but it’s not my aim here to list the possibilities of anger. What is, however, is to hon in on B Actor’s example of righteous anger, that it’s what God feels towards sinners, or, more specifically, the Jewish God feels, and it’s quite the can of worms and cuts into the quick of the nature of the divine house represented by Judaism, at least in Sri Aurobindo’s interpretation, and not only Judaism, but Christianity and Islam as well.

First I should say that Sri Aurobindo differentiates divine anger from human anger, calling the former the rudra energy, or wrath, and says it’s something a human feels extremely rarely, despite how often people claim to be expressing what they call righteous anger, because it’s of a very different nature than human anger, which carries a person away and has them say and do things they’ll regret later. For the divine it’s a force they use that does not use them. So when he says the divine aspect or ideal of the Jewish God is wrath, it’s not human anger he’s talking about but divine, although he explains Jehovah, or whatever name is used, is not the highest form of the divine or of that attribute but the lowest, in divine terms, and closest to us, since it’s that lowest tier of Overmind we’ve contacted and what’s made our world’s religions, what’s constituted civilization, thus far.

Put in illustrative terms, the Jewish God (the God of every religion on earth) has his abode on the lowest plain of Overmind, where the attributes, or ideals, of God are the most separated one from another and the most primitive in expression, meaning the least integrated into oneness among the tiers of Overmind. That it’s also the tier we first made contact with, naturally because it’s the lowest one and easiest to contact, and it’s the one from which comes the world religions, even the ones not housing the divine attribute wrath, or even any personality God, as its world expanding ideal, means we are in for staggering change in our interpretations of God when we begin contacting the higher plains of Overmind, which, well uh, you see happening here in this book, peace be upon you.

The changed that concerned me at the time, and when I wrote the Hitler poem, was in how we deal with wrongdoing and those who do wrong, because I’d done wrong, and even when I identified with the worst man in the world, or who was shown to me as that growing up, I could see that something more was going on than an evildoer is just bad and everyone else good, and the only thing to do with us was get rid of us, either by running us out of town, locking us away, or outright killing us, with as much hatred and anger as righteous people could sum up. It seemed to me that all the anger and hatred in the world heaped on someone who did wrong didn’t do any good, did the very opposite, didn’t stop wrong in the world but made it worse. That means all the Hitler bashing wasn’t stopping strong men from arising and having their people do horrible things to other peoples. It was time, I felt, we looked at people like Hitler, and people like myself, differently.

Sitting there with them at that fountain, I had a real sense of what I’m writing here now, and that’s why I was posting my poems in the powerful places I was, to help bring about this monumental healing change in the fundamental way we deal with human evil and wrongdoing, for myself of course, but also for the world, for you too. What I didn’t realize at the time was that the change we need to undergo goes all the way to God, how we see God and in what terms.

I didn’t feel I was hurting people by reading the poem, although I knew I was offending some. B Actor and the others seemed so illegitimate to me for using the word hurt instead of offend, which was for emotional effect, and when they said it, they lowered their voices and painted their eyes with being hurt, for effect. I felt the same way about substituting the word Christ for mashiach, that it was illegitimate. This wasn’t a shul but an art studio, but I didn’t substitute words because I was just stubborn. I didn’t because I just forgot to, caught up in the rush and thrill of reading my poems. I wasn’t remorseful though, since it changed the meaning of the line: Christ meant the Christ in everyone, but the Mashiach meant the Messiah only for Jews. Besides, it didn’t alliterate.

Surprised at their lack of understanding at what the poem meant, which I thought was as clear as day, and surprised that they were acting like the very people they were afraid of, the ones that got David’s shul keys taken away, I came at them from the perspective of oneness and healing, and argued that, even if it ‘hurt’ a concentration camp survivor to hear the poem, it wouldn’t be harmful to them but healing, since they would never be healed completely until they let go of their anger and hatred at Hitler and his henchmen and recognized they were those people too, shared identity with them, because oneness was our underlying reality, and when they recognized that, they would be in a better position to understand why they were hurt by them, which was because those people were in denial of their pain, and so projected it, not because they’re the inhuman monsters they’re being made out to be, but because they are so human, and we as individuals and as a race are not yet the ticket.

Of course what I said sounds so much better said here. I couldn’t articulate the ideas that well at the time, but I wasn’t talking about forgiveness as we consider it, which is what we simply pronounce we give that to someone because it’s what we think or have been taught we should do, not something we give because we understand why they hurt us, which inevitably has more to do with their being in the role of the one being hurt, in a past pronouncement, at a time they were most vulnerable, than with us, which means it really isn’t personal. When we understand that we do what forgiveness means at heart and in our hearts; we let the hurt go.

But not every evildoer hurts others because they were hurt, since nature doesn’t rigidly follow any single formula in her works, what I didn’t understand yet in my argument with B Actor and the others. And that would mean there are people walking around who just like to do evil and inflict pain and have had nothing evil directly done to them their entire lives, or nothing that would even remotely resemble the harm they’re inflicting. I’d imagine they’d be a rare exception to the rule, and what can you do but chalk it up to the genes?

I think we can do better than that, although genes probably are a factor, as are other factors in the equation of human evil, namely two: the work of the will of the Hostile Powers upon that person, who are the origin of evil to begin with (stomp, stomp, stomp), and, because of our underlying oneness and shared field of consciousness, the work of the will of humanity upon them, which thinks and wills the worst ills upon its fellows at any given moment, the will of ‘good’ people with their righteous anger included as the bad will acting on the bad person, the actor, the manifester, what such a person would be picking up on to pick up a gun and go try and kill everybody, or a bomb to blow everyone up, or a knife or a penis to cut people with or whatever. When we understand those hidden forces prompting the will of the wrongdoer, we are well on the road to healing human evil, but until we do, even if we understand the cycle of pain, or of abuse as it’s called, we haven’t even left our street.

Why it seemed the melody plunged there:
Nurchia never showed up.
You’re not grating this right.
Room with locking. [heard in a loud, official female voice]
He has little boy with him.
He nurtures that little boy.

This is special circumstances.
No problems here.
It only seems so.
A good couch,
it makes you feel warm and fuzzy.
It’s got keys on it.
It’s refreshing.
They did it together;
they brought the world down
to it means something more
than a parent-child relationship.
This was were the world breathe.
This had moon in it.
It carried you toward the Sun.
It was Excalibur.

They just lay there
so softly intertwined,
a love that grows both knows.
He kept that kid all night.
They slept together.
Wonderful how much room.
They keep the years together.
It’s happenin’.

They know how to deal with each other
in all our moods.
This is closeness knows boundaries.
They get along together.
I don’t see any reason to keep them apart.
Now, wash your face.
I don’t think you know mountains,
or understand science
in your living room.
You go there,
and I take you your shorts.

How many people say cheese here?
How many people want to molest the child they live with?
Can you count how many do?
Come on now, see science.
Let’s give an example that works.
Let’s show the world how to do it.
Let’s make them know they’re okay
and give them means to get okay if they’re not,
show the way.
You know you can’t control them.
They’re anonymous figures.
Now experience
group panic
because you can’t count these figures.
I’m destination.
I’m where you breathe.

I’ve got the world by the gun.
You can see my horn.
I’m a figure in time that knows what’s best
where intimacy and I meet the world.
You give the world this.
They need to know it can be done.
They need to know it’s possible
when they affection that child right.
Careful,
there’s worms here.
You have to control yourself,
and it’s very hard to do
if you’ve gone down there a few times.
One thousand dollars,
the will it takes
to control yourself.
This tempts you,
puts you in harm’s way.
You need to know how to stop.

The spreading feelings generate
a permissive attitude.
You just what the fuck.
No, you just maintain control
in those spaces
generate permissiveness.
We’ll show you a gun.
There’s jack-in-the-box.
Just shoot the fucker right there.
Don’t let him linger,
grinnin’ at you.
There’s where you’re in trouble.
Don’t entertain thoughts
that have sex with that child.
Don’t get drunk or be high
when you try this at home folks.
Substances weaken will.
Now are we clear on that?
LSD enhances the effects of the abstinence
in the long of its yard,
if you’re there for that.
That’s the yard:
you don’t trip with the kid on your knee.
These are aftereffects.

And I must warn you,
stay away from fantasies that masturbate
when that child’s not there.
You’re makin’ it happen.
I think the teacher stomps their foot
to say this is on the test.

You can manage this.
You love that child.
They are like a warm springtime,
children,
that know no boundaries,
or if they do they can be easily crossed.
Just bask there
in their warm sun,
a protector of their vulnerability,
a champion for them,
what they need.
Oh they trust you so much,
are so eager to learn the world
and think you give it to them
on golden shoes.
They want the best from you.

They can’t seem to see themselves
in the larger world.
They play with mice,
unaware the social stare.
They can’t get hurt so easily.
They can be bruised.
They know the score
in the sexual in the room,
and society doesn’t believe that.
They can feel your need.
They get into it,
and it’s not because they’re bad.
It’s a human need sex,
but you don’t recognize that yet.
We just appropriate it.
I don’t think we just let ‘em at it.
Can you understand my science?

I’m really showin’ you the world.
I’m tough on stuff.
I’m sorry if that offends you.
Your blindness just costs us so much.
Child to child
is where we draw lines.
That’s their explore time,
and they need it,
boys and girls,
or how it mixes most times,
those boys do it together,
and those girls do it together.
It’s such a joy of childhood, you know?

I think we give them space to do it,
away from us.
If you’re inclined to children,
seeing this kills yah.
Can you understand?
They have their rights.
It’s all on the table.
It’s so loud in there.
They do everything,
just clumsy and fun.
They can’t reach inside with the military equipment,
if you know what I mean,
but they do try.
Society blocks this.
Society don’t know what it’s doin’.
This is dangerous to block.
You’ve never seen so many sexual diseases.
This is awful.
I’m countin’ you some.
Do you just hate me for it?
Why?

Am I sleazy?
I might be cleaner than you.
I might be here
to give you a hand,
and I’m really here,
just ask my Rottweiler.
Now that’s a kid I love,
so helpful in things like this.
Who knows a dog’s use?
Who can see their pride?
They’ll help you with children.
They really will,
just by being themselves.
They get in-between everything.
They want the lovin’.
They can back you up,
and they are so sweet doing that.
A child substitute they can be,
a big dog especially,
and genitals never even come up.
You learn how to love.
Wow, what they can teach you about good affection.
I don’t think we know them for that.
They’ll get between you and that kid,
and you just let them,
and you and that kid have a love feast on that dog.
Everybody’s happy.
Giggle laughs come from all sides.
You know the laughter of healing.

I’ve shown you my dog,
and I think we have five.
All on the bed it’s a pile.
And I’ve shown you how to get out of trouble,
shown you how to be human.
Don’t get mad at me.
Employ me.
I’m here for that,
and you know,
this is a one man operation.
No one’s advising me
except the stars
and my own soul.
Can you hear that?
I give ground guidance
peanut butter.
Please take it.

What’s you gonna do,
take me out of the picture,
put me down,
put me behind bars,
kill me even?
I am so vulnerable you know.
Who’s protecting me?
Gauge that.
You think men protect me?
I’ve been here a long time
singin’ on the web,
a boy in my lap.
What’s keepin’ the authorities from me?
It’s a tight squeeze you know.
They can knock on my door at any time.
Live with that,
and hear me calm with that,
doin’ my duty.

What’s keeping them at bay,
or has up until this moment?
Is that your fingers?
Come on,
why aren’t you pressin’ buttons of alarm?
Granted some do,
or at least I would think so.
I’m givin’ you somethin’, aren’t I?
I have a voice from beyond.
I’ve got a love voice.
I’m really putting myself out there.
I’m an educated man.
I show you the world.
I make you question yourself.
I’m not out to punish people,
only make them see their hypocrisy,
and I do that with kid gloves.
You hear my voice.
It’s got ways in it.
I’m sweet aren’t I?
I know what’s up.
I can tell you about it,
and I’m not a laborious bore, am I?
I’m just heavy,
a deep, long read.
Hear I am
lookin’ for it,
the world hears my tale.
Will you be my friend?

9 o’clock,
it’s the Earth Mom,
liftin’ the world out of its mire,
putting people in their right places.
We score that here,
and that’s the tide.
It’s normal.
It’s the position God has for us.
It’s where the stars are.
It’s right here in your pocket.
Let’s see it.
NItish on his way to school, photo by me

Next post:

Chapter 9
The Back of the Bus

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 7

Astronaut Charlie Duke left his family photo on the moon, 1972. NASA (public domain)

Some Inner Life

We normally don’t remember much of anything of being child before the age of reason, which is when the ego becomes rock solid so to speak, around 6 or 7 for most kids, or when the front teeth fall out and grow back, because our center of identity isn’t formed enough to organize memories around. While exceptions may abound in the form of memory snapshots, ‘me’ moments where we are ‘I’ enough to take a selfie, a sequence of events would be rare to remember. Yet I have always had that memory, isolated like an island in space, until the island joined its continent when I saw the devil again face to face. It’s the memory of that dragon-thing tricking me to the Void (I was 4), mostly of its shit eating grin as it slammed the storm cellar door on me, but also its trickery to get me there, over the course of time, each time leading me further and further down through the lower worlds, which I’ve sincned learned are what we call the hells, to that cut off from existence called by many names because it really is there and has been experienced by more than just I.

Driven by a strange will down ever down,
The sky above a communique of Doom,
He strove to shield his spirit from despair,
But felt the horror of the growing Night
And the Abyss rising to claim his soul.
Then ceased the abodes of creatures and their forms
And solitude wrapped him in its voiceless folds.
All vanished suddenly like a thought expunged;
His spirit became an empty listening gulf
Void of the dead illusion of a world:
Nothing was left, not even an evil face.
He was alone with the grey python Night.
A dense and nameless Nothing conscious, mute,
Which seemed alive but without body or mind,
Lusted all beings to annihilate
That it might be for ever nude and sole.
As in a shapeless beast’s intangible jaws,
Gripped, strangled by that lusting viscous blot,
Attracted to some black and giant mouth
And swallowing throat and a huge belly of doom,
His being from its own vision disappeared
Drawn towards depths that hungered for its fall.
A formless void oppressed his struggling brain,
A darkness grim and cold benumbed his flesh,
A whispered grey suggestion chilled his heart;
Haled by a serpent-force from its warm home
And dragged to extinction in bleak vacancy
Life clung to its seat with cords of gasping breath;
Lapped was his body by a tenebrous tongue.
Existence smothered travailed to survive;
Hope strangled perished in his empty soul,
Belief and memory abolished died
And all that helps the spirit in its course.
There crawled through every tense and aching nerve
Leaving behind its poignant quaking trail
A nameless and unutterable fear.
As a sea nears a victim bound and still,
The approach alarmed his mind for ever dumb
Of an implacable eternity
Of pain inhuman and intolerable.
This he must bear, his hope of heaven estranged;
He must ever exist without extinction’s peace
In a slow suffering Time and tortured Space,
An anguished nothingness his endless state.

from Savitri by Sri Aurobindo
(Courtesy of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Press)

I don’t know when the inner journeys down to the hells began, but it stands to reason that they began soon after birth in the journey towards orgasm my mom gave me and then, once established, moved more to sleep and dream where there was more playtime available. We really have no idea how open a baby is to changing channels if you get the picture here, having come so recently from someplace else that I can most easily describe as the inner world, and babies are as much in the inner as in the outer and mix the two together. A demon can take advantage of that inner creatures that they are. My mom wasn’t the monster; it was. Already inclined to that because of being sexually abused as a very little girl herself, which it had probably engineered as well, as these creatures curse a family for generations, the demon was an invisible but powerful influence on her will, the Hostiles Powers major prompters on human will in general, which we are all but ignorant of.

She didn’t just start sexually abusing me, however. It probably wasn’t an accident I was born with an anus too small, as the Hostile Powers do have some degree of power to cause the body to become ill or have an accident, and so they may also have some power to affect our bodies in the womb, especially the organs of sex and elimination, which are interestingly one and the same, the area of our body that concerns them the most, the erogenous zones. The family doctor, who delivered me, instructed her to open my anus wider using her lubricated finger, and that made me cry, and so to sooth me afterwards she’d rub and kiss me down there, my penis coming erect and, to make a long story short, she sucked it, surprised to find I’d have an orgasm. Soon it was “orgasm change that diaper,” as my muse describes it. When I was an adult, and my mom was describing it to me, a sketchy, non-detailed description, she said it wasn’t sexual but beautiful, and that she had no sexual desire when she did it, denial of course, but these details are unnecessary at this moment. Now I must deal with your disgust.

You probably feel you’re feeling it because you’re such a good person, and such abuse by a mother upon her child is so rare, an abomination of nature, and you, being so normal and moral, just feel like throwing up when hearing about it. There is an Eastern spiritual notion that suggests that revulsion is just the flip side of attraction, and if you really are superior to something, like have no strings attached to it, you are neither attracted nor repulsed but are unmoved when confronted with it, meaning you don’t have a moral reaction, which, when you think about it, is the only attitude to have to deal with something like this properly.

My yoga adheres to this notion, teaches the practice of equanimity, but adds the soul’s say on the matter, or its feelings when confronted with the world’s pain rather, which isn’t a reaction but a conscious response aimed at healing. A non-despondant sorrow the soul feels, for all parties, the abuser, the abused child, and the world that’s been abused. It’s universal, and therefore it heals. You do not know yet that healing involves both the abuser and the abused, or the criminal and their community, as I keep saying, and that in order for one to be healed so must the other be also, or at least the heart-felt attempt made. It’s because we are souls, not bodies, and we are united, not separate as it seems. If you were truly moral and ethical, it’s with this healing sorrow you’d confront this page in our book.

What if I told you that such abuse by a mother isn’t so rare as you might think, not as common as the cold and not always outright fellatio to orgasm, but a mother sexually stimulating their baby nonetheless? If you’re a mother maybe your hand has seen at least the possibility? How many mothers do you think were sexually abused by men when they were little girls? How many of those mothers only bring that up when they have their hand on their baby boy’s penis?

Now what if I told you that, in the scenario with my mother, I’ve basically described our fall from paradise, showed you who the snake was, what the apple was, and who was Eve, or, Pandora opening that box, or, in non-representative terms, I’ve described how we separated from the animal kingdom and became the painfully self-aware creatures that we are, where the human condition came from?

Even today, a mother being her baby’s lover, to the nth degree my mother was with me, with the combination of the environing romantic focus of her consciousness, her worship of me, the demon’s interfering hand, and the at once expanding, at once dispersing, effects of orgasm upon a baby’s consciousness, you’d get a different kind of kid. Don’t try this at home folks. The kid you’d get a demon would love to play with, a kid who knew the difference between good and evil because evil had him by the balls, literally and figuratively, a kid who’d wind up doing evil despite wanting to do good, a kid, if the divine didn’t intervene, as it did with humanity long ago and as it has with me, that would suffer so and bring suffering to others, and last of all you’d get a kid that’ll bring you to ruin with the way today we reach back in time to punish sexual sin, and not even in death are you safe. Do you know my mom’s good name?

I remember reality getting bleaker and dimmer the further down through the lower worlds the demon and I went, in my travels with it as an infant and toddler, and there being a pressure down deep hard to bear, what gave me the feeling of claustrophobia, but the demon soothed me through those patches, although many times I went back up, ignoring his pleas and coaxes. This journey took years actually, started sometime after birth and ended when I was four. I don’t know if it were his intention all along, to get me into the Void, or if it occurred to him as he slid me down towards it, him taking me down to the hells just part of the process of his game of really having his way with me. The same question comes up with the Nazis and the hell they took several million Jews through. Whatever the case, the Hostile Powers were behind that too.

You’d want to hear about the hells, but I don’t remember much of anything except a general sense of weirdness way past anything the world under the sun gets weird about. During those three years of inner exploration, I retraced some of those steps down and can describe a hell or two, but the map I’d recommend is not mine but Savitri’s, but here I will say they are not just places to punish man in the afterlife, although we might find ourselves in one for however long it takes us to grasp ourselves by the neck up and out of it, but they are worlds or realms unto themselves that the people of hell are born into. Finally he got me all the way down to that storm cellar door, which is how my mind represented the entrance to the Void. I remember all manner of things and pieces of things whirling around there, houses, trees, patches of ground, whatever, like reality was just barely able to sustain itself, not enough to give a ground to anything, just to the things themselves, not stable enough to sit anything still, except that storm cellar door, which sat there stone-like defying all groundlessness around. We were at the edge of existence, and I knew it. To get me down that far he’d really put on a show to make me laugh, and before I knew it, we were there. He opened the storm cellar and told me to jump in, and even though I was only a toddler, I knew the gravity of going down in there. The look of nothing is like nothing you’ve ever seen. I wouldn’t budge, no matter what, and he finally gave up, and, however it happened, I came back to myself awake in the world of daylight, most probably in my bed, as I don’t think in was in one of those episodes of my mom administering to me orgasm.

How long before he got me again to that no-realm of everything whirling around in a groundless chaos I can’t recall, to that storm cellar door, but he got me there the same way, by getting me to laughing with his antics. I sobered up though seeing him open the cellar door. “Look,” he said, “I’ll jump in and jump out to show you how easy it is, and then you do it.” You’ve heard the Superman joke of him jumping out a high rise window and coming back in it so to convince a hapless person, who didn’t know he was Superman, to do the same? It has some basis in fact. Chevy jumped in and jumped right back out. You can fool a toddler so easily. I went to the hole and jumped in without so much as a stand there and hesitate, the same way I’d jump out of airplanes when I’d become a paratrooper, why I’d usually be first in the stick, the line of paratroopers in the plane. I turned around once I was in to climb back out, but blocking my exit was the shit eating, grinning face of that damn demon, who’d gotten what he wanted, and he slammed the storm cellar door down shut. If the look of nothing is like nothing you ever seen, the feel of it is like nothing you ever want to feel, like being an island on freezing fire outside of existence, how I wrote about it as an adult more fully remembering it, years before I encountered Sri Aurobindo’s description in Savitri. His captures it well, and I can do no better except to add the following effect: if you figure the pain of circumcision early in life gives your penis a message of pain so to program it all life long from too much pleasure, can you imagine what the pain of having your existence cut off would program in you at four?

Once the storm cellar door was closed there was no hint of any exit, of anything at all actually, not even space if you do understand what nothing is, or that there would ever be anything, since I had the sense this was for eternity, and a toddler can know there’s a forever when faced with it, and never again would I be anything more than a blot completely and utterly alone and feeling a claustrophobic terror my self could not sustain, and I screamed and I screamed, but in hopelessness no one can hear you scream. An insanity raging panic is the picture I’m painting here. I vividly remember losing my mind but nothing after that moment. We can only take so much, thank God.

What would a demon want with putting a human child into the Void? The question might not even come up because it’s, well, a demon, and they are just monsters, have very little self-control when it comes to being diabolical, and they will take things, and us, as far as they can, and that’s how you catch them, as my muse says, “catch them in the noose of the fury of their acts,” but they also eat. What he wants is life force, the tainted kind that has ill will at its roots, what Robert Monroe calls loosh, whose Journey’s Out of the Body and Far Journeys were big influences upon me, as Castaneda’s books were, only Monroe’s more trustworthy, at least as far as Far Journeys, which was a far as I read him, but again, the main map I’d recommend here is Savitri. Our Earth is their feeding ground, all half-conscious worlds are Savitri points out, and we are basically their cattle, the conspiracy of conspiracies that gives rise to all the many unfounded ones that claim some human group, Jews for example, secretly control the world, but they are not an organized ‘Illuminati’, although they are more intelligent than we are, but are a pell-mell mixture of different kinds and groups of demons competing for feeding space. There is, however, a Satan, not the head of all demons but simply the most powerful. The demon in my life, the family daemon as the Greeks called these things, isn’t Satan but a minion, what the term Rakshasa comes close to describing. What’s eating you?

I’ve always had a memory running parallel to being tricked into the Void, one where fantastic beings that had stars for heads carried me to someplace of beyond the world, a place of perfection and beauty, and they put me before a being seated up high in a building that an ancient Greek temple might give some small hint of, but it wasn’t something built, came up out of the ground itself like it a part of it. I could not see the being it gave off such a bright light, but it gave off no heat, only pure love, and I was bathed in that. The feelings there, they washed the worst hell off you.

Sri Aurobindo’s character in Savitri faces the Void and subdues it with the look of his immortal soul, but I was rescued, and the isolated memory above, always coming hand in hand with the other, is an example of the divine coming and intervening when the monsters have gone too far. I mean, you can only do so much to a kid before God steps in, but, my God, you can do a whole hell of a lot. In any event, this put the divine into my life, and the two have lived side by side all my life, the divine and hostile powers, and even the broadest-minded reader would have trouble with me. I’m sorry.

Castaneda also says that, if you do call up an ally, expect it to communicate with you in some way soon after, which happened with me immediately upon arriving at work right after conjuring the damn thing, or what I couldn’t help but think was a communication so intensely coincided it was with the conjuring. It unfolded over the course of two weeks, but that first day was the most intense and hardest to live through. It had started with Kevin, and it’s so interestingly connected to demons that we need to talk about him, to make an allusion to a movie that has no idea. When I got to work everyone was asking me, “Did you hear about Kevin?”

He was a young co-worker of mine, quite interested in my inner experiences and study of Castaneda. Our unusual conversations were the talk of the 3 to 11 shift. Unbeknownst to me, the night before the conjuring, on his day off, he’d called up the Towers looking for me. He was in search of LSD and made that known to at least one person he talked to. He figured I might have some, but I only smoked grass, scared to death of acid for aforementioned reasons. Soon after getting into my station in the driveway of the east tower, as the doorman, I was called to the office, told about Kevin and questioned about distributing LSD, not by the police but by the personal director, Mike Marchant, a very likable, tolerant guy who had that rare gift of being able to successfully juggle the needs of management with the human condition of the employees, but, as great the guy as was, you knew he’d side with management in a pinch.

Sometime after making those phone calls, Kevin took his wife and baby son hostage, according to the police report, and fired at the patrol car that’d been called, and so the Houston police S.W.A.T. team had been called out. He was arrested without anyone being harmed, and jailed. This news, combined with the growing exclamation point in my consciousness of having just conjured a demon, those goddamn exclamation points, which had flooded me with unremembered things, was more than my reality could cope with, but I held my cool and didn’t run out of that office screaming and waving my hands in the air like I wanted to. No, I told Mike, I didn’t offer to sell Kevin LSD nor anyone else, was not involved in that, and didn’t know why he’d go off, although I had a strong suspicion, that I dared not voice, it somehow had to do with that demon, the time difference notwithstanding. Mike believed me, and that was it, or at least with being questioned about it, but it was far from over.

My apartment block was a welcomed sight that night as I came home from work. The railroad tracks right behind it always gave me a sense of living at some boundary more significant than just where the tracks ran, but I could never put my finger on it, although the entire building shaking every time a train came by made me think on it often. It was almost midnight, as it took more than half an hour to drive home from downtown Houston. I lived on the second floor, and as I walked up the stairs I could see something was wrong with my door. It was slightly ajar, and that jolted me back to fear. I was sure I’d locked it when I went to work. Walking in, I could feel something. Yes, the environment had definitely changed. I telephoned Randy (no cellphones then), my best friend, the only regular visitor to my apartment, actually the only visitor, who I’d given a key to so he could come in while I was at work when he got off work in the evenings, so he could smoke some grass and listen to my strange music, which I had on cassette tapes and played on a tape recorder. My whole apartment was strange, and I cultivated that vibe. Even the plants in it grew weirdly, not in the normal way the plant would grow, stalks turning at odd angles, leaves reaching out in different directions. I had no pets.

His voice shook as he spoke. He told me he wouldn’t be coming to my house for awhile, maybe not for a long while. I asked him what happened, and he told me that he’d come in as usual to smoke some grass and listen to music. He turned the recorder on and got high, seating himself on the sofa. Within a minute or so he said he heard my voice on the tape saying, “Randy, help me I’m trapped, help me.” He said that, although I was pleading with him and using a terrified voice, one he’d never heard me use before, he thought it was a practical joke I was playing on him, so he got up and rewound the tape. My voice wasn’t there the second time. He said as soon as that sunk in, every hair on his body stood on end. Then he heard what seemed like every dog in the neighborhood barking nearby, and so he looked out the window, and the dogs were barking up at it, how dogs sound when they’ve cornered something unnatural, a monster , simply beside themselves with frenzy. They were barking up where he stood. He said he just dropped everything and ran out of the apartment as fast as he could, too scared to even stop and close the door. He said he slept with a Bible for some days after that, and his wife, Denetta, said he woke up a couple of times speaking in another language. That’s what she said. He didn’t come back to my house for a month or more, and he gave me back my key and never came again when I wasn’t there.

The next two weeks were hell, in the sense that I now had something of hell in my living room, meaning literally and in the center of the living space of my thinking. I didn’t go to see some religious ‘expert’, like a priest or something, because I felt no affinity with any divine house, Christian or otherwise, and I highly doubted anyone I spoke to would have actual knowledge of demons and could help me. I would just be told to pray and go to church, stop trying to gain knowledge and just be a good religious person. I was not even tempted to go that route.

Instead, I went to my Greek professor, Dora Posi, and told her all. I didn’t go and see my thesis prof because I felt that he, being an official historian of NASA, and I forget his name, would scoff at the story. I did, however, write my midterm paper on the events in question, and he gave me a B for insight. I dropped his class and idea to do a thesis, not because of the grade, but because my mind had been blown, and I saw science hadn’t yet any real clue of what was going on here on earth with us. He told me when he had to sign my drop form that he had been waiting for me to come and see him. I asked him then why didn’t he say that. It seems his position of authority, the one he held in his head, wouldn’t allow him to take that hat off a moment, be my friend, and invite me in.

My Greek prof was able to do that. Although she was an agnostic, really an atheist if you got right down to it, didn’t believe in ‘spirits’, she had heard the story of Kevin going off and the S.W.A.T. being called out on television news and said she believed that I believed what I was telling her. She said it was odd that the story seemed to have been taken off the air, as she only heard it once and that was it. That’s because some very rich and influential people lived in Four Leaf Towers, including the pastor and friends of the then President George H. W. Bush. Interesting that Interfin, the management company of the Towers, had the power to take a story off the air, just so residents wouldn’t be alarmed, but that’s another story that I can’t tell you because I don’t know the facts of.

Dora advised me to stop thinking about the events for the time being, to stop going over and over them in my mind, to come back to them when I was more stable, and to use Greek to ground myself, as she saw I was dangerously close to becoming mentally unbalanced such was the degree of fear I lived in. She said just bury myself in studying Greek, and bury myself I did (although I continued inner exploration, using Greek, and my job, to keep me focused enough on the outer world not to lose the ability to function in it), becoming proficient in translating Greek, even scoring in the top 10% of the nation on the national Greek proficiency exam by the time my studies came to an end three years or so later. This was an instance advice really helped. She told me her door would always be open to me, for anything, and it always was.

Two weeks after the conjuring, Kevin called me at home. I was surprised to hear he was out of jail, surprised he was even still alive, after he told me, giving his account of his going off, he shot the windshield out of the cop car when it drove up. He was chipper and said he was ready to be taught. I was suspicious, and now I think I must’ve told the story of the conjuring to someone at work, but I actually don’t remember doing that. In any event, he described, on being jailed, how he was lying on a cot next to a dirty tile wall, which was a reflective surface. He looked into it absently, and low and behold silver animal shapes began to appear, and something seemed to want to materialize, but before it could, he went berserk, and they put him in the psych ward. Now he was out and wanted me to be his teacher.

It sounded all too arranged, and so I told him that, if he was going to go off and hold his wife and kid hostage with a shotgun, and shoot at the police, then obviously he needed to see a psychiatrist, not me, and not to call me again, ever. That sounds mean, but, like I said, it sounded like he’d been put up to it. It might be that’s what happened to him in jail, as it does seem the demon had something to do with him going off, but I tend to think in calling me he was being coached by someone, and I especially suspected that three years later when I discovered Interfin had bugged my apartment, but it was a different apartment complex, one in the museum district of Houston, and someone from security lived right next door. I say discovered, but a mind game was played on me at work when I went to sleep and wasn’t supposed to be sleeping, a game that showed me someone had been listening to me in my apartment that day trying to remember out loud the complete “to be or not to be” Shakespeare quote. When I woke up I found the complete quote written on my notepad. Maybe the guy next door was just listening through the wall with a cup or something, and maybe it was a one time thing, but I doubt it. They played other mind games with me over the years, once to show they heard me in my truck too, or maybe it was just a one time thing too to make me think they heard everything, but, whatever the case, they were sneaky, and I wouldn’t put it past them to have had something to do with Kevin calling me. That’s the trouble with surveillance; even when it’s telling the truth it’s a hidden lie.

The man I sat across from at that table in Ascent Institute in Safed was obviously all ears, although he got nothing of the greater measure of the story I’m giving you, but he pretended not to be impressed in the least. It was an act I could see right through. He wanted to hear more, but instead, he feigned to be put off by me, told me to take off the keppah, stop pretending to be a Jew, get rid of any thoughts about converting, and go. That’s the trouble with orthodoxy; it’s more into itself than truth. Moshehiem had told me a saying among the orthodox, told it with such pride in his eyes: “God Himself can tell me to change the law, and I’d obey the law.” I think that says it all.

I’d had a lucid dream sometime not long after the conjuring where I lived in a country house, and Randy came from the city in a station wagon loaded with food and supplies. The driveway bordered a barbed wire fence on the other side of which was a very large field that sloped up a ways off and to the left into a high hill on which were tall pine trees, the kind that had long, bare trunks and short branches that began about two-thirds up the tree, just that small patch of trees near the top, the rest of the hill and field cropped grassland. On the other side of the driveway was the house, a large, one-story, wooden, country house. Randy and I were unloading sacks of groceries from the back of the station wagon, the kind that had a large back door that flung up instead of out. As he was in the house with his current load, I noticed sacks were missing, and with a start I realized they were being stolen right under our noses. I saw a well-worn trail that went to that patch of trees, a hole in the fence where it passed there. As I followed the trail with my eyes from the driveway to the hill, a heavy sleep came over me, and it was all I could do to keep myself awake and look. I knew that Randy would never see what was happening because of that sleep, and with a start I realized no one can, because that sleep prevented us, and I became lucid, realizing the thieving creatures were demons, and they came from that patch of trees. I looked at the house and felt them call me to come to them, as they were in the den, what I just knew looking at the house. Even though I was lucid, I was still scared, because I knew I was dealing with more than just dream characters; I was dealing with demons.

I girded up my loins, meaning I gathered myself in courage, and walked into the house, into the dimly lit den in which, seated on chairs, sofas and such that lined the walls of the room, were a number of small dog-dragons, all making a chanting-like humming sound. One of the creatures got up and rushed towards me, and I could barely stand there without turning tail and running. He stopped in front of me and sort of slithered up my body, breathing heavily against my neck, panting and growling at the same time, as though in both lust and rage. It had a wolf’s teeth, and being lucid in no way eased my fear of what they could do to me, but although shaking with fear, utterly terrified, I was also drawn to it, attracted even, and I marveled at how I could betray myself with such feelings for the thing, and I understood at that moment that’s what demons were made of, those intensities of contraries, lust and rage side by side, and that’s how they hooked us, fascinated with death and sex as we are. I didn’t know if it were going to kiss me or tear my neck to shreds. Then it whispered in my ear, “This, this it what it’s like to meet the Weirdings.” Upon him saying that, they all began to chant “Weirdings,” like dogs panting out the word. Before he kissed me or tore my throat out, before I knew which he’d do, I woke up in my bed in my apartment there next to the railroad tracks.

The dream wasn’t a nightmare, as it would surely be labeled today with our propensity to play the victim card on anything hard and scary life confronts us with. It wasn’t one because it gave me just what I needed to begin to understand what was going on, not only with me, but with us humans here on earth. It all depends on how you look at it, and that determines what you get out of it. I knew I was being introduced to these creatures, as they knew I knew they are here.

They hide from us until we see them, and when they see they can’t hide any longer, then they try and get us to focus on them, try to determine our view of them, or even to win us over to their side if we are so inclined, or they hook us into them by hoodwinking us into thinking they are here to quicken our evolution. In the contrary way the world meets us, because there’s a basis of truth at the bottom of every lie, since nothing can exist without an element of truth, they are here for that but unwittingly, not as beings who want to be here for that, since they are here to do everything they can to keep us from evolving so they can keep eating, want us to remain half-conscious, not become fully so, but I’m putting intention on beings that really have none, as one has told me, “Our aim is no aim.”

Unwillingly they fit into God’s will by testing our metal, are guardians of the threshold for enlightenment, the journey to the soul center, the rise to Supermind, for any spiritual movement that reaches beyond the world, as we see it as animals anyway, which is at face value. So you can see them as monsters to fight, or as creatures that unwittingly test you to see if you’re ready to evolve, and it’s when you see them as the latter that you can just let them go until such time as you have to face them because they are right in front of you blocking your way, and then it’s not them you’re fighting but that part in you that responds to them. Again, it’s all in how you look at it.

I did not have this look then. My yoga gave me this attitude, but it would be years before I’d become a disciple of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo. Now, I mean then in that apartment in Houston waking up from their introduction, they didn’t interest me because I’d been so burned so early on, and here I’d been burned again. I knew they only wanted to cause me and others harm. But how to put the genie back into the bottle? It seemed to me it was loose in my apartment, but that really wasn’t the case, since it’d always been near me, behind me and under my feet actually. It was my shadow as Jung would say, and I’d read a lot of him and had a Jungian perspective on things, which made it easier to assimilate the knowledge of this demon attached to me. At the time though, it felt like the thing had come out of the woodwork, and I had to put it back in.

Sitting on my sofa one night, afraid it was going to materialize right in front of me, because I was watching these flashes of a small arc of angry, red, auric light jumping around the room, first here, then there, it struck me that, since there was the Darkness, there was also the Light, what I’d learned in a big way in that divine experience but hadn’t yet come to terms with, but here it seemed a very viable option to investigate further, and that was the turning point for me from a path of knowledge to the spiritual path. I just begin to think on and investigate God and the Light.

It didn’t take long before I began meditating and doing pranayama, yogic breathing exercises, opting not for the worship side of things but for the practice. Having been an atheist and come back to divinity, I didn’t return to the old man in the sky the monotheism of the West and Near East believe in. Seeing with your own eyes replaces belief, and you can just get down to business, the business of knowing God. It just took awhile before I put the knowledge I’d gained in that divine experience into head, heart, hands and feet.

Within a few weeks, maybe it was a couple of months, I’d make the journey to the well of soul and to my higher self overhead, what just happened unplanned as a result of an all out, no holds barred, inner exploration, but one now turning to God and not to the pursuit of knowledge for its own sake. Although to reach my soul center I had to confront the Hostile Powers again as guardians of the threshold, in a story I’ve put on our blog Harm’s End, called “A Hidden Resource Guide”, the urgency of dealing with them faded away. It would not be until my arrival in Auroville years later, right after leaving Israel, that I’d see that dog-dragon again face to face, its true form, and, despite our many attempts to give a picture of one, you’ve never seen an alien from outer space from a dimension other than the physical, believe me.

To the well of soul: I was reading Hesiod’s Theogony (an English translation), reading it part of the syllabus of a Greek Mythology class taught by professor Posi that I was taking. I came across a verse that talked about how it took a hammer nine days to reach Tartarus. Something clicked, and I saw ancient knowledge, disguised, as the ancients most often presented it. I realized that the ‘falling place’ I’d been finding myself in had a destination. My visual field is a blank, and I’m in twilight, that place between waking and sleeping that if you just open your eyes you’re awake in bed, and I have a sensation of falling or simply of travel, what direction unknown. I saw it would actually take me somewhere if I can go the distance. I decided to try to get to it, wherever it was. This had no similarity to going down through the hells to the Void, although it’s like you’re falling in a void, since this is a straight travel and going down through the hells is, well going down through hell worlds. I think you get some kind of picture here. Just know there’s a down there and an in here, the latter I’ll explain shortly as the well of soul.

Lucidity was coming almost nightly back then, and so I made an intention, what to do when I awoke within a dream. I’d been doing that a lot, asking questions, that sort of thing. I thought I’d just get back into that chute, what I’d come to call the falling place, and to do that I’d meditate and do pranayama in the dream. The first night I became lucid near the football field of Thompson Intermediate, where I played football as a child. I was on the street next to the field. I began to sit down in a cross-legged position, and as I did a monster came jumping over the cyclone fence from the field, eyes rolling in a spiral, completely mad and berserk. I woke myself up before it could get me.

I don’t remember how many nights went by, maybe a couple, when I became lucid and remembered the intention, and the two don’t always happen together, your dreambody being actually not your surface self, but closely aligned as they are. It was nighttime, and I was in a very large motor pool, and off in the distance the buildings in it were changing colors, and the anomaly triggered lucidity, as anomalies often do. I began to sit down to meditate, and a big mac truck suddenly appeared headed straight for me, horn blaring. I just closed my eyes, unperturbed, and as it got to me it just melted over me, and I began to do deep breathing and entered the chute. I don’t know how long it was I was falling, and it’s not exactly a fall, but what it is I can’t rightly tell, when I got scared that I’d been falling much longer than was safe. In my inner exploration I greatly feared going into a coma and not being able to wake up, and I was claustrophobic, and although the chute isn’t a tight place, it feels like a tunnel, a well you’re falling down into. I panicked and opened my eyes, and I was awake in bed.

I had another go some nights later. I determined to count this time to keep track of how long I fell. I don’t remember the dream from which I entered the chute, but enter it I did, by meditating and doing pranayama. That I do remember. It happened that I lost count it seemed I’d been falling so long, and I got scared again but this time didn’t panic. Then I heard my mother’s voice and my sister Gwen’s, pleading with me, each with that tone of voice that reached me, that tone of voice I knew, knowing them so well, when I knew it was an emergency. They were saying, together, “Donny wake up. You’re in a coma. You’re in the hospital. You’re being tricked. Wake up. Wake up!” What is a body to do? I opened my eyes, immediately realizing I’d been tricked by them, because I wasn’t in the hospital, obviously, but in my bed in my apartment there by the railroad tracks. You see what I mean by calling them, the Hostile Powers, guardians of the threshold. It’s not that they want to be. They’re just trying to keep us in a little coral of limited and cramped experience. So they try and stop us, but if we keep going, if we persist, we get out of that coral. They can’t actually stop us.

The arrival only I remember, not what dream put me in the chute or even the being in the chute, only that I just kept going no matter what. I’m afraid I can’t really describe it very well it’s so different from the material realm. I went through a boundary unlike any I’d ever experienced, and I splashed down into, suddenly entered and was engulfed by, a blue ocean made of space, not outer space, but Spirit space. It took my entire being, not just my body as water does, and it was wonderful, so very light, no heaviness to it at all, so very safe and warm, not in temperature but in feeling. In it were floating things that looked like little arches or quarter notes, the only objects I saw there. All else was formlessness, but saying that seems it was nothing. This something seemed greater than the world. I was just drifting there, and, although I tried not to, I drifted right through one of those arches, and I had the feeling it was being, but I didn’t harm it by passing through it. There was music there, but not what we know as music. It was the fabric of the atmosphere. Can I say it felt a bit like home, as other as it was? It was certainly very familiar, like I’d been there so many times. I don’t know how it happened, and I was only drifting there for a short time, some minutes maybe, but I found myself awake in bed in that apartment on the 2nd floor. There seems to have been some rush of movement to come back, colors and forms flashing around me, but in any event, it was a short trip back to the world under the sun.

There were no signposts or anything to tell me where I’d been. I only knew I’d been to some place fundamental of Spirit. It didn’t change my life, turn anything around, and it took my many years before I really know where I went and what that accomplished. But it did make possible an ascension in a couple of weeks that I will fill in later on in this story’s spiral. I went down into the well of soul, the inmost place inside myself, not down really, but in. Let me explain. I think we go there sometimes, all of us, and when we were children we went there often. We recharge our batteries there, as we are spirits that have put on deep diving suits so to live down here in the worlds, where our movie’s taking place. You know when you wake up and have had the most refreshing sleep that you have gone into the well of soul and bathed in its energies. We never remember it because it happens in dreamless sleep, where we don’t bring any memories back, but if you make the journey consciously, you take your conscious down there and make a hardwire connection to the soul. It takes years, or has taken me, for that connection to flower into surfacing things of soul, but there’s no mistaking when it does. You know deeper than a man is speaking. And I continue.

Rottweiler attitude
I reach out.
I’m not sayin’ on phones.
I’m just reaching out to you in the darkness:
give me back my keys.
You took them long ago,
and I’m just a lady pawn in your scheme.
I’m not vocabulary.
You are society and I am man.

You seem so much bigger than me.
You break open jars.
I am not a kingdom to myself.
I can’t test limits.
I have to conform to your idea.
That’s the only way I can live.
You’re impossible to live with.
You treat me like a serf.
You don’t know my gold.
You just military me.

How do I get out of this?
You won’t allow me to breathe
if you’re not there to say how much and when.
Can this be right?
What do you use me for?
To set things right?
That’s not allowed.
I think we’re prohibited from speaking
if we give a truth a back name,
show what’s going on underneath things.
You’re scared of that.
You chop people’s heads off.
Now you socially ostracize them
to shut them up.
I’m not talking to power but to you
common citizen,
your power.

Okay Rottweiler,
give us a load of your voice.
We’re listenin’ all ears.
Has this ever been said to a man like me?
That would overturn the applecart,
if society heard him.
Look I know how we was made,
and I can show you.
You don’t want to hear that.
It’s too upside down,
pulls insanity on our teeth,
questions reality,
challenges you in the very notions of yourself,
changes society.

I’m here to do that.
Will you pray with me?
We are a temple of reality.
We can get in there with God,
go ups and downs.
We can arrange our ship
to match reality.
Are you game?

Are you just a notion that plays safe?
Where is your bold and daring move
listing reality at its source?
Can you see there?
Are you happy where you’re at?
Is this freedom?
What can you say to time?
You’re in the bullpen
to pitch a world series?
How do you count yourself,
a figure or not,
where you captain your own ship?
Come and see me.

I pin you to the world
an adventurer’s worth.
I show you reality stares back at you.
I play with fire.
I stand up and sing my name,
an actor in a field that knows that.
Can I show you figures of time,
the parenthesis within a parenthesis within a parenthesis within a parenthesis we are? /
And there’s no end to the parenthesis.
We are some little ship
sailing on time
in its minuscule range.
We barely front reality.

We are all there is
we have been told all our lives.
Break out of that shell.
We are foot soldiers
where reality meets the world.
Have I you tantalized you yet?
I question reality,
everything.
I’m down to music.
I’m a butterfly.
Can we wave at each other,
and you not crush me?

Leave your time spirit at the house.
It’s not fair to human beings.
It needs some nail cutters.
It’ll scratch your eyes out
crossin’ the street,
puttin’ somethin’ different on your life.
You are not a well of soul
time spirit.
Let’s get away from you.
Let’s meet each other in peace.
Let’s be brothers and sisters.
Let’s give individuals a chance to be themselves
and like them for it.

I’ll keep rubbin’ music
until you hear me.
I’m a plan,
and I’m situated right here:
where you meet reality,
and I’m not goin’ anywhere
in a larger reality.
I’ll keep personifying time,
show you the Supreme,
give you your own set of keys.
I know how theys made,
between a rock and a hard place.

Okay we’ve spoken this out:
my need for a refuge from you,
my need to change you,
my need to let’s be friends.
Come on,
hear time,
hear the storybook,
hear what I have to show you.
It’s a whole other look,
and I’ll give it to you for free.
Wow, that’s a load off my mind.

Now please, the door to time,
can we see beyond its integer?
It’s a position in on itself.
It sped along.
The universe gave it lore.
You’re sideways.
You can even see the chapters of the book.
I admonish you to read them.
That’s five minutes help me;
I’m gonna get to the bottom of things.
I’m gonna see how we tick.
I’m gonna see the nature of the universe.
Can I come to your house,
mule?
There’s the dog.
Hi honey.

You have some room I finish?
If it’s in her house,
got stuff
on her daughter’s liberal.
The control there,
so it’s biopsy.
You have an extra couple of minutes?
Call the police.
It’s your only number
when faced with what bothers you.

Why daddy did you come to Pondicherry?
Telling my history.
It’s solved.
It’s the light of green.
You think it’s worthless.
You ignore me so completely because of it.
You got it on your sleeve.
You’ve got it under wraps.
I mean to tell yah
this is a lie:
how you hate it.
You guys
took my photo.
I would even say you like to hear me speak.
No one says anything about it.
Keeping silent is their job with me.
They block me.

And you look good.
Look at this:
I’ll just put it on ‘im,
a huge idealism,
and then I tip you over
for bad stuff.
Referring to an incident,
all these unlovely moods.
I could get over the counter detail.
Judge me.
Hit me.
I’m in your pants.

Is that a school?
It’s a wide open space
I think you gather the world.
Hear somethin’
that doesn’t introduce kids in the wrong way.
I will show you their time with us.
Send a piano.

Zip it,
my fondness for them
in that big snake in my pants.
I wouldn’t throw it away.
I’ve integrated care.
As I said,
harmonize the demon.
He’s there,
but you don’t feed ‘im
the harm that child.
He’s stays aloof with you,
and the child stays safe.

I’ve integrated childcare
with your attraction for them.
You’ll tell me I’m wrong,
but why else are you so scared of their disease:
the feelins’ they house in the body with genitals?
You run from that.
You think it’s ugly.
You even punish them for it,
a touch touch with themselves and other children.
What is that?

Society you’re mean.
You’re scared of that.
I can scapegoat all day,
but I will never see the problem.
I love my children dearly.
I just pour over them
one ounce of sweetheart.
I’m a for use platform.
I can’t get over it.

I think that was the parent that doesn’t cross lines.
Many, many, do,
and you don’t want to see that.
Where have we come right here?
To the stranger in the room.
Look I’m being honest with you.
I’ve got my pants off
right here in public.
Oh my God society and its genitals,
you would think they’re monstrous baby guns.
They are so loud, you know?
All hands on deck.
We’ve gotten to the bottom of gun,
just right there.
I’m existential tired.
We’ll fill this in another day.

Made a lot of references to soul.
That’s what we stand by.
We can’t stop playing.
That’s the soul puts on time.
Your morality is made from it.
It’s your true sense of right and wrong.
It’s where you’re at.
I’ve found my soul.
I see people
that doesn’t form itself.
They’re ignorant of soul,
and they can’t take it out and study it
how you see life,
how you see that God is not
under the dominion of soul.

The soul challenge:
that’s not wearin’ to Western socks
or your notions of life.
The course of history
has evolved a world soul.
We bring it up in dream.
It shows us our time marks,
where we are good,
where we are bad.
You investigate it,
and put morality in its place:
soul finds it.
Can you come see that?

Do you see it?
We find our soul.
It’s there
all over the world.
That’s Seattle
to know there is a soul.
That’s somethin’ you gotta do:
understand soul in terms of you.
You have the guiding lamp of your life,
and you stay true to it,
and you manage to become
great the players play all night.
You are no longer a hazard to people.
You’ve heard science in its more mature shoes,
and you’re ready to evolve,
and you’ve cleared history,
really got that outcast thing
where people take you in again,
and you become the soul in time.
That’s the story.

Next post:

Chapter 8
A Small Open

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 6

La distruzione del Tempio di Gerusalemme by Francesco Hayez 1867, public domain

Legends of School

“Donny, come here, come, come.” It was my classmate, and he was eagerly motioning me to follow him. This was very odd because he was Black and I was White, and this was third grade in East Texas in 1970, and, although Leon County School was officially desegregated, that didn’t mean the different races mixed socially, not by any means. It was like there were two different worlds sharing the world, only no one shared anything with the other race unless they had to. I tried to ignore him, but he was persistent, standing there under the awning near our classroom putting all his will into his hand pulling me towards him.

I regretted again that day, some two weeks before, when, bored to have no boys my age to play with because we lived so far from town, I finally gave in to my sinful desire to go and play with the Black boys who lived on the same dirt road as I, sinful because I knew my daddy would not like me to do that and might whip me for it. We lived on Old Durant Road four miles from the town of Jewett, a road littered with the houses and trailer houses of both poor Whites and Blacks. We were different my daddy often said. We were Dukes and White, and they were just a bunch of niggers. I believed him, never challenged his racism, but I always wanted to point out we lived on the same road as they and were poor too, but I never did. We lived in the woods almost a football field from the road, woods I roamed in, where I became a thinker, because I spent most of my playtime alone in those woods. My two step-sisters told on me too much to play with. That scrubby secondary forest, punctuated with tall old trees, was where I put my thinking cap on, as a habit I mean, kippah-like, although I already thought a lot, and so the solitude helped me to grow, was something I actually enjoyed sometimes, but it did get boring, like on that day.

Anyway, I knew the boys lived a mile or so further down the road, and so I rode Dolly, my Welch pony, to see them. I rode her bareback and with reins of rope, Indian style we called it then, as we couldn’t afford proper horse tack. Boy were they surprised. They lived in a cluster of houses on both sides of the road, and all the boys came out to play. They were a lot rougher than I was used to, and poor Dolly got the brunt of it, but it was wonderful. I spent almost the whole day there and regretted it after because I thought I’d done wrong. I never went back and, although the boys, like this one now, held my one-day friendship still in their eyes, I didn’t talk to them at school other than what you have to say when you live side by side, and I didn’t want the White boys to know I’d made friends with them. My daddy never found out, but it’s doubtful he’d have whipped me. Kids have this way of taking the prejudices of their adults as something they wear at all times and in all circumstances, and that if they don’t do the same, they’re in big trouble.

An image of that day has stood out in my mind and heart ever since, my heart also because I feel the sadness of it in my bones, and I’ve wanted so many times to tell that little White boy I was back them to just eat and enjoy it. The mothers made a feast for us, happy to have me there, and they went all out, cooking fried chicken with all the trimmings, mashed potatoes and gravy and greens with bacon bits and other tasty things. It’s pained me so many times to realize they must’ve sacrificed for that meal, and I just refused to eat it, but I wasn’t trying to be mean. It was so clear to me that here was line I mustn’t cross, to be loyal to my daddy I said in my mind, and looking at that nice meal I had to repeat that a few times. I’d play with them boys but not eat their food. You’d think the women would be put off, but they knew what was up. They sat me down—I think there were three of them —and, smiling with the patience of the ages, waved a drumstick under my nose until I couldn’t resist it, knowing as they did the hands of little boys when it came to being offered what they liked, and I grabbed that leg and ate it, but that was all I’d eat I thought to myself, the chicken, but I wanted to plow into the rest like who would’ve thought it. I didn’t though.

Returning to that little Black boy motioning me at school, I followed him to where he was leading me, a place near the end of the row of classrooms where we wouldn’t be easily seen by anybody. He stopped and put a crayon to his arm, a black one, and said, “Look, I’m not black.” And then he put a white one to mine and said, “And you ain’t White.” I stood there and agreed with him, never having looked at it like that before. He was being painfully earnest, like he was showing me something extremely important, a discovery of his that would change, if not everything, then at least things between us. For just a moment I felt his pain at being Black in a White only world, as much of all that a nine-year-old can grasp, but then I quickly walked off back to the playground, eager to get away from his pain and the dawning sense, which I wanted to nip in the bud, that I was a cause of it. I felt really uncomfortable as I was walking away, as these weren’t feelings that fit into my kid-self (more grown up they were ), and like a kid I just wanted to lose myself in play, which meant in those third grade recesses get back to bulldogging it on the merry-go-round (grab its sidebars with both hands when it was at full speed and let it fly you through the air), and I was king of the bulldogs.

I was Donny Duke, a recent addition to that ‘been together since kindergarten’ ascending class of that one classroom per grade country school, and I was from Houston, the big city, and I was girl-crazy, girls in the class as crazy about me (Carla even dug up her dead cat to give me the skull, a prize for boy like me, a woods roamer), and walking to and fro under those tin awnings, my class going somewhere in single file, snaking this way and that, high school girls would come and run their fingers through my hair and fuss over me and say how cute I was and didn’t do that for any of the other boys. You would not believe what took that normalcy from me, religion believe it or not, but the spiral will fill that out later.

There was another reason I was making a hasty retreat from that boy’s pain, one deeper than a narrative of a lifetime can go without sounding like it’s gone off the deep end so far have we gone from the narrative of soul, a secret, awful reason steeped in my own unremembered murder at the hands of the KKK when my soul had donned the body of an African American man of the South in a former life, which was somewhere around the turn of the 19th century. It was a haunting really, and the memory hunted me in dream as a little kid, although in this moment it was a stirring awake enough to run from, dreams where I’d either be or be watching a Black boy growing up, and that day with the Black boys on Old Durant Road, playing among their smiling mommas and dilapidated old houses, was a sort of an unrecognized homecoming, why it felt so good but why also I really never went back: it really hit a nerve.

Getting back to the setting of this story, Safed, Israel, it’s occasion for being told, I don’t remember when I put on the kippah, before or after my night at Mosheheim’s, or if I had the dream of putting one on before, but I know I had it on after, when I attended a couple of classes at the Ascent Institute of Safed, where the crowd at Avraham’s was taking night classes. I wore a white kippah, which was for ceremonial purposes, not for everyday use, why probably I got pegged as a non-Jew so easily. I was and am a person that listens to synchronicities, and I found that kippah on the ground a day or so after the lucid dream about putting on a kippah, where I found it I don’t remember, but most likely in the cemetery where I was sleeping. Of course I put that one on. My whole time in Israel it was the only kippah I found. It appears the universe that put it on me didn’t want me to convert to Judaism, since it didn’t aid at all in that process, made sure I’d look like a Jew wannabe Jesus look alike and nothing more.

I went to Ascent in the late afternoon and asked if I could takes classes there, explaining I was a non-Jew but was thinking about conversion, and that I wanted to study Kabbalah. I was sent to talk to the director, or whatever he was called, who gave me permission. He told me, and it was literally the talk of town, that it was the time of the Revelation, not in the Christian sense of that word, but in the Jewish sense, when the Kabbalah would be disseminated throughout Judaism. Tradition has it that only when you turn 50 can you turn to it, after having learned the whole of the Law and having put it in practice for a lifetime more or less, so you won’t get sidetracked or go off the deep end obviously. In any event, their disseminating it to all Jews who wanted to learn it, regardless of age, was a breach of tradition, but they thought it was justified because they believed it was the time just before the end times and the time of Revelation. I left there with a small pamphlet I’d picked out to read among several, because the title caught my eye, which was something like The New World Order and the Coming of the Mashiach.

It spoke of the Mashiach as a political leader, not a miracle worker, and stressed that. He’d be the leader of the nations, and Jerusalem would be the capital of the world. That was basically the gist of it. I don’t remember much else of the pamphlet other than my thoughts while reading it, which that it seemed to me the writers of the pamphlet were trying to upstage the use of that phrase, new world order, by the former U.S. president George H. W. Bush. I didn’t know at the time it was or would become, with the advent of the Internet, a phrase linked to the conspiracy theory that claims Jews secretly rule the world and so forth. I didn’t buy into that theory then and don’t now (my awareness of the unlimited power Israel has to oppress the Palestinians and to influence especially the American government in its favor notwithstanding). I do, however, see that some sects or groups of religious Jews believe Jews should be the leaders of humanity and have prophecies that play that out, such as the pamphlet I read was doing. While it isn’t a whole lot different from the Christians or Muslims who desire the same, or, from a national perspective, the Chinese or Russians, and I can keep adding groups all day long, as it’s probably a desire among some in every human group on the planet, I think it’s quite prevalent among orthodox Jews in Israel.

I had an encounter with a young orthodox man on the streets of Jerusalem, the new part, not far from the central bus station, a month or so after leaving Safed, who gave me a very revealing picture of what it looks like to Jews (who believe it) to have the Jewish people as the leader of the humanity. He came walking up from the opposite direction and was putting leather bands on people’s arms, on anyone’s arm who let him, and it was a kind of complicated procedure with the knot he had to tie. He wasn’t wearing the Hasidic getup but was wearing the black clothes of the orthodox, with the 40’s style man’s hat. He appeared to be in his mid-20’s, and he looked determined. He was tall and rather slender, and when he bent over it was as though paper was being folded in half, was not a fluid flow. He had a handsome face but one not open and smiling. Watching him put the band on a man’s arm in front of me, I asked him what he was doing. He explained, telling me it was called tefillin, and that on it, or folded in it rather, was a verse from the Torah. It seems to me he gave me a rough translation of it, and I knew it from my Bible days (I’ve since learned there are four verses). I asked him to put one on me too. I no longer wore a kippah, was wearing my colorful hippie clothes. He looked me up and down a moment and asked if I were Jewish. I said no. He said no band then.

Therein ensued a conversation wherein he gave me that revealing picture. He likened humanity to a body and said that Jews were the head of the body. I asked then what people were the anus. He didn’t see my point. I went on the say that his idea was religious racism, although bigotry is the word normally used to describe his religion is superior attitude. We’d need to see it as racism to change it, give it the charge it needs to see it. I explained that, inherent in that view, was Jewish superiority over everyone else. He denied that it was racism of any kind, laughed at the idea. He said humanity had to have a head, and Jews were it. What would humanity be without a head? I couldn’t make him see that the image was only that, an image for illustration, and that you couldn’t make it fit reality. Who would be the arms then, the hands, the feet and so forth, returning to the anus so he might see now what I meant. He didn’t, and he didn’t put a band on my arm. What struck me though, was how sure he was, dead certain. I realized I was talking to a brick wall, one that had been built by bricks of indoctrination that had been put carefully in place over the entire course of his young life, from birth onwards. It’s the idea of the chosen people pictured how it would look in practice: the head would look down on the rest of the body and order it around.

While I was with Lars camping on the Mount of Olives with our small Jerusalem Peace Group, some days after finishing the hunger strike, we heard a story about a Catholic priest that had been publicly asking the question: what’s the difference between the chosen people and the master race? The story goes that he got quickly transferred out of the country. Maybe that’s a folk story that’s been floating around Jerusalem for years, or maybe it’s a true story, but it’s a good question nonetheless and one that needs asking. Of course the ideas of the chosen people and master race are not the same ideas either in theory or in practice. There are big differences between the Jewish belief and the Nazi one, but the thing to ask is if there are similarities, and, if you’re honest in your assessment, whoever you are, you’d have to admit there are. It’s the same with the comparison of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians with the Apartheid of South Africa. It’s not the same thing, but you can draw a comparison between them, and that’s what needs to be admitted.

The world cannot, neither the Palestinians being oppressed nor the people wanting it to stop, expect either the Jews who are doing the oppressing or the ones unequivocally supporting Israel despite it to admit to that Apartheid-like oppression unless humanity admits that the Jewish people not only has a right to exist (as my muse has said in poetry) but also that we need them and always have, at least in this latest stage of being human, because they have something to do with who we are, with our becoming the modern ego us, but that’s a story filled out on the spiral later on.

But that pamphlet about the new world order and the questions it brought up were not the main things on my mind. At that moment in Safed, I wanted to attend Ascent to explore the possibility of becoming a Jew myself and to see what the Kabbalah was about. Constantly being discriminated against because I wasn’t Jewish just baffled me, as it was wholly unexpected and didn’t fit into my picture of how I thought Jews treated non-Jews, ones who weren’t trying to kill them or wanted them dead at any rate. Somehow I expected the best from them, which I know now you can’t expect from anyone, myself included.

The first class I attended, one late afternoon, was an introductory one in the main lobby, where there was a long table at the head of which sat the teacher, a man in orthodox clothes. On the sides near him we students sat, only two women and I, both of them married and wearing the hair net married women wore. We watched a short film on a television monitor about Hasidic Judaism, one full of enthusiasm like it was just the coolest thing, and then he talked about what it meant to be Hasidic, which was, as he explained it, to be on fire for God, and where, for example, you were by the Law required to put your cut fingernails and toenails into the trash, the Hasidic would burn them so to go that one step further in obeying God’s laws, and they would do that with everything. It gave me no desire to convert let me tell you, and I began to suspect that the teaching and study of the Kabbalah had been taken over by the orthodoxy, and I couldn’t see how the two could mix without the latter becoming so watered down it became only an outer observance and inner moral attitude and not the unbound and unpredictable opening of the inner consciousness whereby mystical experiences steeped you in knowledge of God. I didn’t know at the time that the Hasidic movement had been centered on Kabbalistic teaching since it began, or, to put it differently, that the orthodoxy had taken it over long before. It’s that way with any mystical tradition really; it’s too dangerous to the doctrines and practices of any religion not be controlled by the orthodoxy of that religion, or banned altogether as it is in many cases. Mystical experience, which means both metaphysical and spiritual experience, has this habit of taking off habits and changing a religion.

The second class was my last. It was in the evening, and several Americans from Avraham’s were there, including he, people I knew and talked to on a daily basis, at least for the past two weeks or so, people I considered my friends, as much as you can in that amount of time, which, when you’re traveling, when time is or seems more compressed, is quite some time. It was a regular-type classroom, with student desks, the teacher’s, and a blackboard. The teacher looked like a regular collage professor, wasn’t dressed in the black of the orthodox or in the heavy getup of the ultra. I remember he was writing on the board the Hebrew word for charity and explaining that, according to the Law, whatever fell onto the ground in a farmer’s field could be gathered by the poorer Jews and was to be left for them, but they couldn’t take anything off the crop themselves, as that would be stealing. I think I must’ve asked a question, but I don’t actually remember why he suddenly centered his attention on me.

“Are you Jewish?!” It was a typical ‘who, me?’ moment as I tried to evade his pointed stare.

I just looked at him a moment, feeling like a Jew in Nazi occupied Europe being spotted in a crowd or whatnot. I’ve probably just offended a million people, because the consequences were so lopsided. Here I’d only be thrown out of class, while there I’d be sent to a concentration camp and probably killed, but I’m showing you the spirit of the thing, hatred, and you don’t know how interconnected we really are, or I doubt you do, connected in our very deeps, how we are not divided in groups or even as ego individuals as it appears on the surface, and how it’s these small ‘you are not in my group get out’ that add up to the big ones where you are killed for being in the wrong group. After some hesitation, I finally said, “I, I uh, no, but I got permission to take this class from the director, and I’m thinking about converting.…” I’ve always said too much in a pinch.

“I don’t believe this.” The transformation that he then quickly underwent was something to behold. “This is impossible. I can’t teach this class with you in it. Leave!”

“I’ll just sit here and not ask any questions.” I looked around at my friends for some support, but, like as happened before but with different Jews, they looked away or looked down, looked anywhere but at what was happening, although I think I caught a whiff in the room of a couple being happy about it, the ones who had wanted to tell me that same thing but couldn’t do it because of social constraints.

“You have no idea. Your very presence will disrupt the class. You don’t have the background, don’t know anything about the Jewish tradition, what these people have been learning their whole lives. You, you know nothing of it!” He was silent a second and declared, “I will not teach this class until you leave! Is that understood? He said the last part to the class, and now what was happening was being looked at, but not from my side. I decided to go, but what really got me was his hatred, and I didn’t’ t want to just leave without addressing it. He wasn’t just annoyed I was there. He was seething with anger, shaking with it. I really wanted to ask him why he hated me, and did he hate all non-Jews, or, for that matter, what had all that tradition taught him if, at the drop of a hat, he would just lose it and throw a fit, but I said nothing and just left, the room’s silence a thunder helping to throw me out.

I’d imagine the reader would be split 50/50 on this. Don’t people have the right to the privacy of their group? There’s a humanity involved. Maybe in matters of security privacy is needed if the secrets being told save lives, and even then a humanity witness would not be out of line if they know to keep the secrets that really do save lives, and they are there for humanity and not just the group telling the secrets, but things like a humanity witness in human groups won’t appear until we are quite a bit more mature as a humanity. I’m not talking about surveillance devices, electronic spying, but of living breathing human beings, and not ones necessarily appointed for that purpose but people, like myself in this instance, an outsider, that, as part of the mind-boggling all things connected movement of world process, just showed up. When you let them in it’s a process of soul. It could be too that a group needs their privacy if they’re teaching or telling things too deep, things that could harm the uninitiated, but that wasn’t the case here. The case here was the racist and exclusive attitude, which had superiority as its basis, that the uninitiated would harm the group just by being there.

I went to the office the next day to complain. I talked to a different man than the director, or the person I thought was that I spoke to the first time. This one was impudent but not so much so you couldn’t talk to him. He wore orthodox clothes, not Hasidic, and I think they didn’t dress as the Hasidic Jews they were because they didn’t want to scare prospective converts off. The whole place was a front to convert Jews to Hasidism more than anything else. He told me that the teacher was in his right not to teach the class with me in it, and, to sum it up, that I was no longer allowed to take classes there. I tried to talk about the hatred and anger, but to no avail. Finally, I did what I always did when being devalued. I bragged. God save me.

This meeting with him has played over and over in my mind since then, since it was here I began to realize I was only bragging when talking about my spiritual and metaphysical experiences (but realizing is not the same as stopping), my over the top outer ones too for that matter, like being a Green Beret on a tactical nuclear mission for example, not bragging every time, but most times, and that, usually, the person or people I was bragging to would not appreciate my experiences and were not ready to even hear them, as was the case here at Ascent. What is the case here? You not ready?

We were sitting at a small table in the large lobby near the entrance, in front of one of the windows, he with his back to it and me looking out it from time to time. I’d never just listed my experiences like I did with him, but the topic of our conversation had gotten to the Kabbalah, and I was expressing my thoughts on what I thought their thought was in regards to it, which wasn’t to either teach or encourage mystical experience other than surface phenomenon such as slight ecstasies, the seeing of visions, auras, the future, and the curing of sickness, and other things that had to do more with magic than spirituality. I figured, however, that he’d be interested in deeper things, and I figured correctly, only he wasn’t about to show that. As I went through my list I could see him try to hide his peaked curiosity and interest, which is how a little boy looks driving a motorbike on the roadways here in India, so serious and matter of fact, so to look like he’s not driving illegally most likely without his parents’ permission, when you know in reality he’s jumping up and down inside with excitement.

I don’t remember either the order or the exact manner I listed the experiences, not anywhere near as neat as I do here for you, but this is the basic gist of the list. I asked him did he want to hear about driving my truck and going several meters over my head and being for a moment who I am beyond all the lives I’ve had, my Godself, or did he want to hear about driving that same truck a year later and not only my thoughts stopping but my breathing and heartbeat, and down the road I drove still, in a sort of suspended animation, or about the time I found myself inside my grandfather’s body as he died of a heart attack two weeks before he did in the way and in the place I experienced it beforehand, or about the inner journey I took to someplace deep inside me, which was all the way through dream to what was beyond it, an ocean or realm of Spirit, or about the time in university I conjured a demon? I didn’t include the divine experience because I was on acid, and so I didn’t think he’d think it was real, and I only included the biggest experiences, the ones I knew that would impress him the most.

He wanted to hear about the demon, and I remember I thought at the time that showed me how mundane he was, unspiritual, since a God lover just wants to hear about God, any and every idea of God, to see how it stacks up to theirs, to see if they might be missing some possible way to get closer to God. I was surprised at his choice, and he knew it. A look passed between us that put the conversation on a different footing, a look where he no longer held the look of holier-than-thou, a footing where he no longer held the higher ground.

He got a very abbreviated version of the story of conjuring the demon, which happened soon after I returned to Houston to study the History of Science, returning there from Seattle, where I’d been washing dishes so to try and forget about thinking deeply, if you remember. The detailed story I put on the web some years back with the title, “Breaking Silence, Careful to Stay an Apparition”, but maybe I was too detailed, or too careful, because only a handful have heard that silence broke. It’s the silence in regards being molested by the Hostile Powers, whom my muse has described in poetry at the end of the last chapter.


Even though I was no longer an atheist before the conjuring event, I hadn’t become interested in knowing God or in spirituality, wanted only knowledge and returned to college for that, as I mentioned earlier. I as yet had no idea where to put or what to do with what I’d seen in that divine experience. Returning to Houston after that experience, it took some three months to settle down enough to begin classes at the university, and because I had a dual focus, inner exploration and university study, I had to find a full time job that would support me but wouldn’t rob me of any thinking time or shake me up out of myself and my inner focus. That’s why I kept the job as a doorman, valet and concierge I’ve mentioned earlier, at Four Leaf Towers near downtown Houston. They preferred college students and allowed us to study at work, and it was a calm, quiet environment conducive to an inner focus. I should mention that, other than with my mom and high school best friend Randy, I didn’t socialize with anyone (no net then). My life was concentrated on gaining knowledge, not of the material world but of the unseen, to a degree that all else took second place, because I’d seen it exists and knew there was knowledge to gain. And so begin those three exceptional years or so of mystical experience I’ve referred to.

I don’t think you ever write a university thesis on really what exactly interests you the most. Other than having a small brush with a tactical nuclear device in the army and becoming interested in atomic science, I don’t know why I decided to write a Master’s thesis on the origin of atomic theory in Greek science when what interested me more was how we came to be different from other animals in the first place and how we become the ego-organized human beings that we are, ego transcription, mainly because I wanted to know where our sexual preference comes from, but that’s a story for later on. I wanted to show that their atomic theory came more from intuition than empirical observation, perhaps wholly so. I suspected the early Greek scientists were mystics, and that they did as much if not more inner exploration than outer observation. That tactical nuclear weapon mission in SF had made a deep impression on me, and I basically wanted to know why, being so much more civilized than other animals, we were at the same time hell-bent it seemed in destroying the whole human world, and much if not most of the natural world, with nuclear bombs. The Cold War was still going on remember, as this was 1989. Also, I didn’t want to come from the standpoint of religion but of science, what I still held as the most reliable means to investigate reality, if it would but admit the results of inner exploration and modify its method for that. If it would but admit it was wrong. Fat chance.

As it turned out, I didn’t get passed the initial idea stage of the thesis, didn’t even complete the undergrad History of Science class I’d enrolled in at the request of the professor who’d oversee my studies, who also taught the class. What happened was this: I’d begun to wonder if, like Socrates from his daemon, some early Greek scientists got ‘help’ from non-material entities in their investigations. The divine experience had opened the door in me to such possibilities. My question concerning them took the form of a more general question concerning us: are such beings involved in human life now? My life was arranged to answer such a question, and so when the writings of Carlos Castaneda gave me the knowledge and a drawing of M.C. Escher suddenly the how-to, I used them.

I remember sitting on my sofa in my small, rundown apartment on Old Galveston Road near Pasadena, Texas, looking at an Escher drawing on my wall, the one where he’s looking at his reflection in a small glass crystal ball, and then looking at my own glass ball of the same size on my coffee table, which I’d rubbed my blood, spit, and semen on in the weeks before in order to ‘program’ it to me, things I just did on the spur of the moment looking at the thing, having heard you have to program crystals. It was a Christmas gift from my mom, made in India, and I do think those things add to the whole thing. Anyway, I snatched it off the table and got it to how he had it in his drawing looking at himself in it sitting there on my sofa looking at myself in it. Putting the two and two together had not occurred to me before, believe it or not.

I didn’t just look, but looked with that knowing Castaneda talks about in The Fire From Within (or maybe it was The Eagle’s Gift?). You have to look into a reflective surface so to call up what he calls an ally, his name for the disembodied beings that help him with his exploration of dream and magic in his books. It’s hard to know what I mean; it’s not believing you’ll see one but knowing you will with a certainty, the same kind of certainty you use in lucid dream to supersede the laws of matter. It certainly helped that I’d just smoked some skunk my sister had given me that’d been grown on Spyrock Mountain.

With that certainty, I was not surprised when clouds began to form in the crystal ball, but I was very excited. After a few seconds they took animal shapes, each with the same silvery, mirror color, a donkey, monkey, and then the shape of my surprise: looking at me with his pure red eyes was Chevy, the dog-dragon, the imaginary playmate from my early childhood. He was standing in the reflection as if behind me and had one furry paw over my shoulder, like he was posing for a family portrait, the fur on his body standing straight up like it’d been electrocuted, which really added to the atmosphere of hysteria let me tell you. That devil wore the same shit eating grin he wore the last time I’d seen him, when he’d shut the storm cellar door down on me after having tricked me into the Void, that cellar door how my four-year-old mind represented the entrance to the Nothing, or nonexistence, or bottom-most hell, or whatever you want to call the sum total of all our fears. We were looking eye to eye the demon and me.

The eyes of a demon are the damndest things, holding awful knowledge you really don’t want to know, knowledge you gain in the Biblical sense of to know, being fucked, but it’s not consensual intercourse; it’s like you’re being raped, ravaged. And it wasn’t just any demon. The hell of the whole thing was that it was the imaginary playmate I knew I had but didn’t remember how it looked exactly, until now, when I saw it wasn’t imaginary but very real, what it wanted me to see. It was looking into those calamitous eyes that I realized, among many things in that terrifying moment, that Castaneda did not have the reader’s best interests at heart, had the worst intentions in fact, and I had been snared in his intricate, tantalizing web of lies lighting every truth. He says two very contrary things to do, several pages apart, if you find yourself looking into the eyes of an ‘ally’: if you keep looking in its eyes you’ll bring it out into your outer reality; if you look away it’ll kill you. What is a Faust to do?

I tore the thing from in front of my face and held it at arm’s length, stood up like a jack-in-the-box, shaking like a leaf, and ran to the window to fling the thing as far as I could from me, then thought better of it, since I realized it was now an object of power, something those books also explained, went back to the sofa and plopped down into it in that state of terror that visits a man when he’s come face to face with something really and truly to be afraid of, something from the jaws of hell, a devil. Fortunately, terror of the unknown and I were very acquainted, as you have seen, and it didn’t unseat me, just scared the shit out of me. Hastily I put the crystal ball back on its stand and sat there trying to calm myself down. I had to be at work within the hour.

In our talk we miss somethin’:
God simply is.
And that’s a whole other business,
like the mountaintop.
The mountaintop
came into my arms so easily.
I did not know what it said.
I ignored its wisdom.

I looked on the floor and found God.
This was a world away.
God became the center of my attention
in long slow leaps.
It’s where I put my feet today,
and I’m not crying.

I don’t think so,
I don’t think I will be here tomorrow.
Do you have another one?
Of course.
I will guide tomorrow
all levers to enlightenment.
My body will be here but my mind will not,
not the mind you know,
not the one called Donny.
We’re picking it up now,
and I don’t know how long it’s going to take,
but here I am in the room with you.
Field with me.

Let’s bring this to enlightenment,
the village in our room,
the city we sit at.
It’s what’s going to take tomorrow
in human consciousness,
in long slow years,
as the years open up.
We gather it today.
And here we are.

You ever seen it?
And this book will show it to you
in the course of its pages.
So it’s here before me
in my mind’s eye,
completing the world.
Do you hear it?

We’ve listed it,
put it where aim bothers you.
How would you grasp life?
You’re reaching for enlightenment.
But know this:
it’s not the end of the world.

Supermind comes down
in your ascension,
and you fulfill the world
with your consciousness.
You become That who you are,
and we are here for that.
Great the days play towards that end:
a new Jerusalem,
in the symbol paradise of man’s mind
Heaven on earth you see.
And there we are.

Let’s talk about the soul.
We did.
The Supermind
is where your soul sits above time,
and there it is inside you
a piece of itself
evolving in its ways.
It’s what we are becoming
if you want to know the truth,
our soul self.

That meets enlightenment.
That gets ascended
in the supramental transformation,
an enlightened being soul.
That ascends with soul force.
Ace ascension,
it’s a hard part,
the ascension of the soul
into everyday life
from the depths within.

Where the soul meets life,
it’s not an automatic process.
Can you grasp your soul?
Can you bring it on?
Touch it and it will come.
Be ever present with it.
Soul involvement
to open your life
to an involvement with God.
This is ascension.

Really come ascension.
It probably goes to me right now
provide you the milk.
Deal with it.
Deal with it plainly.
You have the news.

The burning of Jerusalem,
I’m just really well on the water.
Someone with an advanced degree
has just barked at you,
read you the riot act.
No I haven’t done that.
Enter your community
someone who reach people with ears.

I’m listenin’ to my world.
I write it down for you
a world need.
You’ll just lock me up
if I get unprotected.
You hate prophets and seers.
You will just get rid of us
to get out of that word.

I think I saw it a short film
and ah
notion you ride in your head:
my path lays straight the ways of the Lord.
Read my path that way.
No need to divorce.
We’re not gettin’ a divorce.
I’m right here at book.
That cannot be;
that can’t happen:
and the God who was in the book dies,
and we’ll never hear it.
Just look at me please.
You’re gonna have to sooner or later.
Now that’s the stuff
build us a better world.
Let’s get this show on the road.

Next post:

Chapter 7
Some Inner Life

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 5

Painting by Alex Levin, “Colors of Jerusalem”
www.ArtLevin.com (used with permission)

A New Car, a New Character, a New Interpretation

The first thing to go when David gave me that Charles Manson look was the memory of past lives, and afterwards I couldn’t remember a single one, but that wasn’t the half of it. I was brought back immediately to the mundane world of everyday survival, as here was a man I hardly knew, God knows what kind, in my acid accentuated head obviously the leader of some cult my sister had gotten herself into, trying to steal everything I had, which was my truck and a little less than $500, obviously to bring me into the cult and make it so I couldn’t escape. Who were these people?

In the drop of a hat I went from joyous excitement to feeling very much afraid, or really, repeated the hat drop I’d undergone flying over those divine houses and seeing the Antichrist vacancy. The fear was quickly mounting to terror, so fresh was the antecedent terror in my heart, and in a state of just wanting to burst into tears I found myself in a struggle with his will, and he was really putting it on me. I looked around for Joelle, but she was elsewhere in the trailer. It was just me and the leader of this mountain hippie cult, or so the acid was picturing him. “I’ll, I’ll give you half.” I regretted it as soon as I said it, but I thought if I could give him half my money, I’d have enough to escape.

I don’t remember his reply or the remainder of our conversation/contest of wills. I do remember he was really enjoying himself at my expense. Whatever the case, I lost it and  crumbled into a frightened little child just fighting to hold back their tears. I didn’t continue the conversation or to consider his demand, I just begged him to take me to my sister. Joelle came into the room to see what was the matter, as I think I was begging loudly, and he took off the glasses and sat up. I think he told her about the act he put on, but I’m not sure. Anyway, they both, on seeing me having a ‘bad trip’, smiled that knowing smile, the kind you give to a kid that’s sure there’s a monster under the bed or in the closet, the kind that doesn’t take you seriously and is tickled at your silliness because there is no monster under the bed, or so it’s said. I, however, believe in monsters. At any rate, they tried to talk me down, Joelle explaining the bad mushroom trip that brought her to David’s trailer, telling me I just had to realize it was all in my head, and there was nothing to be scared of. I just kept begging them to take me to my big sister, her familiar presence the only thing in the world I wanted at that moment. They finally walked me to her cabin when they realized it was useless to try and console me. Gwen met us at the door, and they explained I was having a bad trip, and they all three laughed that knowing laugh, and David and Joelle walked off, leaving me with my big sis Gwen.

I remember watching them walk away hand in hand, laughing and still enjoying their trip. It was like watching people from another world so distant they appeared from me, although they were only meters away. The whole world before my eyes, in fact, was a great distance from me, although I was standing right there in it. It was like the world had been drained of substance, as though all color in it was gone despite the presence of color, and these are just images to try and describe the movement of my conscious awareness inside me to a place where the world was perceived at a great distance from me, but, because they body was still there in it, I was still picking up the world’s signal and not, for example, the divine world I’d just visited, or the inner world of dream. This distance from the world was not only in my vision. The sound of their laughter and swish, swish as they walked away I heard like I was underwater, and my touch upon the cabin’s things, as my feet upon its wooden floor, seemed as though other hands and other feet than my own were doing the touching, although I felt the contact, or my body up there in the world did, as strange as all this sounds.

What made it unbearable was the terror, which seemed to come from nowhere and everywhere at once, as my ego, loosened from its earthen moorings but still very much alive and kicking, had lost the thing most dear to it, what had formed it and what it was wrapped around like an infant child its mother’s milk-laden breast, had lost its raison d’être, but it existed still, in some vacuum of terror, the world, its lover, too far away to even feel. I’ve described the dissociation state, known as a disorder in psychiatry, as the pit of the void in Buddhism, but the Mother, my teacher, describes it as the infinite in the finite, and from that perspective it can be managed better, since, when the consciousness is changing by degrees towards realization, as opposed to it just happening all in one go, that hard to bear state is a stage along the way, at least for some minutes or hours at a time. I don’t think it’s a necessity to be caught in it permanently. I think the many people today claiming to be enlightened are really in the pit of the void. If the ego wasn’t there they would be realized, but that’s the very thing you’re so terrified of: the ego disappearing and hence you, the world, and whatever else might there be, all in one great big swoosh that swallows you whole into the pit of nothingness.

Gwen didn’t console me or try to talk me down, saying she was tired and just wanted to go to bed. I asked her if I could sleep with her, as I did when we were little, as she did with me when we were teens, her knowing I wasn’t attracted to her or any woman, and my room was cooler than hers. She became angry and told me to sleep in the loft. Several times, as I fought to escape those lethal jaws of nonexistence, I begged her to let me in her bed, like a child begs their parents for the same, but she was adamant in her refusal, like that child’s parents, who aren’t into the kid at that moment and just want some time off. After some hours, tired of holding onto the world so it wouldn’t escape from my grasp altogether, I must’ve drifted off to sleep, but I honestly don’t remember if I did or didn’t. I just remember it being dawn, and, although I could still feel the rush of tripping and was yet under the bombardment of representative thinking tripping sends you on, I was back in the world in my body senses first, and it was wonderful.

Speaking in a mini-recorder beside Gwen’s cabin, which has since been lost, the day not yet having settled itself on the land, I described what I was experiencing. I had this odd and overwhelming sense of oneness, a concept up to that time I’d not considered much, other than as monism in a philosophy textbook, nor did I believe in it. The retreating shadows, the tall trees coming to light, the many brown hues of the leaf-dirt-pine needle mix blanketing the ground becoming distinguishable, and the long, steep, dirt driveway, the forest road kind with two parallel tire-wide tracks running side by side, showing more and more of itself, gave me a sense of edibility to the oneness starring in my mind. In my growing vision I saw the whole being revealed. I tried to see from where it came, the sense of oneness, and, although while there I did not feel it, I saw it came from that divine experience, saw with the connection I still had with it, and, as I spoke a mile a minute into my recorder, out there popped a naked thought of healing that quickly clothed itself in words that pointed me onwards: “the personal growth process towards wholeness and healing.”

It had come as the first aftergrowth of the feeling of oneness, a shoot springing up from that stalk. At that moment I entered the spiritual path, consciously set my feet upon it, which, in my mind, was one of healing and becoming whole more than it was anything else, and I needed healing, but I hadn’t seen that, seen in the sense of know beyond all doubt, until that LSD trip, but now that I did it took central place. I wasn’t sick in body, nor in soul, but the malady effected everything else, from the mind down to the subconscious. I had a social disorder of the third kind. Looking back, I see it was that practicality that made the spiritual path real to me, something walkable, that hands on ‘look at my hands is it working’ (or it wasn’t) vision of it, where the search for God and enlightenment, the finding of those things even, were not the goal, being healed and becoming whole were, or rather, as it would come home to me in time, the finding of those things (and more) were what it meant to be healed and made whole.

This wasn’t just processing that acid trip, which I was yet feeling the effects of. It felt like I had been born anew, remade, and I had this living sense a fundamental change had occurred deep inside me, a change in the direction of my life’s movement, and chasing after what attracted me, satisfying my animal wants and cravings, was not longer my ticket to ride, what I wanted out of life; I wanted to be whole and healed. This was not a decision I made that I would heretofore try and carry out. I saw this paved path my feet now stood upon, felt in the marrows of myself I was now on the Way, and it wasn’t a matter of straying off the path or sticking to it, not a matter of success or failure, because the Path simply was wherever I was, and at the same time, in the bright mysteries of spiritual paradox, it was a not yet arrived place I needed to get to.

Soon, in the settled firmness of the light of morning, I pocketed my recorder and walked to David’s trailer, which was half a kilometer or so from Gwen’s cabin and on the other side of the mountain’s main road, the one the Native American stone sits beside some kilometers down the mountain. Her cabin was nestled behind a small wood above the main road. Jake met me not long after I’d gotten on the main road, and quickly several others dogs joined us. Still somewhat tripping, I felt a part of the pack, its leader as a matter of fact. David’s trailer was down a long driveway that curved to the left and lower than the road, and you couldn’t see it or the other buildings on his property, on account of the many trees standing between the road and his compound. A locked gate met you at the entrance, locked gates the greeter of guests on that mountain. I climbed it and walked down the driveway to the house, Jake and the other dogs at my heels. I knocked on the door, and David came out, explaining that Joelle was still sleeping, and he didn’t want to disturb her.

We sat outside and talked. He wasn’t happy that Jake had formed a pack again, something he explained had gotten the dog into a lot of trouble with the neighbors, on account of chickens and such being eaten, and my pride at being the leader of the pack vanished, leaving me feeling silly to ever have had it. The first thing I said was that I’d realized that something about myself was in shadow, not calling it wrong because it wasn’t a moral sense I had. I saw it as an obstacle, to myself and the people it affected. Gwen had told everyone about it before I arrived, and so it wasn’t like I was revealing anything private about myself. He told me that I’d reminded him of what’s possible in tripping, something he’d forgotten so accustomed he was to dropping acid now. He was reminded he said of his first couple of trips. When I asked why he’d put on the sunglasses and demanded my keys and money, he answered that I was ego tripping, and he thought he should snap me out of it, but he didn’t expect it to take me into a bad trip. One thing’s for certain; he was ego tripping. He didn’t apologize though, and I didn’t linger on the issue. It’s obvious to me now he had no idea of my experience, its depth, its reality; I’d just had an acid trip. We didn’t talk very long, and soon I returned to Gwen’s, leaving a scolded Jake with his master, the other dogs having run off seeing Jake in trouble.

It was now midmorning, and I was still feeling the effects of the acid, the echoes of representations each thought brought, the sense of implied meaning behind the this’s and the that’s I looked at that trailed off into infinity, although my senses weren’t noticeably effected, and I wasn’t seeing trailers of motion or that intense vividness in regards to each and everything you see on acid that makes objects seem almost alive. This was in my head, and it was getting rather scary. I wanted it to stop.

The radio was on in Gwen’s cabin when I went in, and with a shock I heard it say what was in my mind, but I don’t remember what that was, only that, in some strange way there is no way I can explain, it pointed to me being the Antichrist. I seem to remember asking her to turn it off, but it was too late. I had stepped into what’s known as a psychotic state, although one could argue I’d stepped into it the night before, but one can also argue that such a thing, as psychiatry describes it anyway, isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s really, as I’ve called it, a spiritual emergency. Maybe if I’d have stayed on the mountain and away from any electronic media I could’ve managed it, or it would’ve abated, the mountain my place to work it out, but I was seized with the need to leave and leave immediately. I was scared shitless.

Gwen, in the hate me one minute love me the next manner in which she had always been my big sister, until hate finally won out altogether (she won’t even speak to me now), tried to get me to stay. Her hate minutes were understandable, although love/hate isn’t the best manner in which to have a relationship with someone, understandable because it’s so human and because she was my mom’s whole world when she was a baby, in that I am your God and you are my only begotten son/daughter way my mom had with her babies. She was that, that is, until I was born, when she was only two. I don’t think the term sibling rivalry can capture it, although it’s supposed to. What Gwen could never understand was that it wasn’t personal, wasn’t about love; it was about attraction, and my mom was more attracted to me because I was a boy, another thing that made Gwen have her hate moments: boys got to do so many things girls weren’t allowed to.

At any rate, she was suddenly sweet and kind, and I could see she really wanted me to stay, not only because it would be better for me if I did, but also because she was lonely there by herself and wanted my familiar presence. I didn’t leave in order to get her back for the night before. I left because I felt I had no choice. I mean, I could not stay there under any circumstances whatsoever. I had to go and go I did, down that mountain and back into the normal mainstream world, as if its normality would bring me back to normal, as I was basically still tripping, would be for the next eight weeks, would never really return to normal where a tree is only a tree, a mountain only a mountain, or the world only the world, again. I had become a representative thinker, mind you, and here at the beginning, unaccustomed to the intensity of that, it was all a bit much.

Returning to Moshehiem’s apartment in Israel, so fast I’m sorry if it’s making your head swim, after telling you the story I tried to tell him, what might’ve turned those mental wheels of his towards ideas of God big enough to fit the world into, non-Jews included, a world that flings things together that are mutually exclusive, or seem so, and that doesn’t conform to any idea that we have about it, I should return to that book I’ve mentioned that I was reading, the only reading I was doing, the only media I was putting my attention to while in Israel, with one very notable exception explained later, other than the songs and such that just came in because they were playing in the air or passing before my eyes, the book I’d ordered right before leaving Houston for Israel, the one I finished upon arriving in Auroville, India six months later: The Life Divine by Sri Aurobindo.

Moshehiem had trouble with that book. It was over a 1000 pages thick and featured a large photo of an Indian guru on the cover, staring straight at you, and I carried it almost everywhere I went. Why, he asked more than once, would I have my nose so stuck in a book by an Indian guru when I wanted to become a Jew? I obviously didn’t see The Jew in the Lotus, to make a literary allusion to a book I hadn’t read but who’s title says a lot (I’m reading it now). I should begin my study of the Torah he told me. On my end, there was no way I was putting that book down. That wasn’t even on the table. He said I’d have to if I converted. I remember thinking they’d have to pry the book out of my hands. Never had I had a book participate with me on so many levels while reading it, and I’d danced with many a book, my thought and feeling in sync with its pages. This book took that to a whole other level, and some of the synchronicities were astounding, one in particular while on the hunger strike in Jerusalem, which was the reason I went to Auroville, but that’s another story lost here but told later.

I should explain that, until finishing that book, I did not follow any path or religion, did not have a teacher and did not think I needed those things, was adamant in that opinion and declared it left and right, along with the one about belief, telling people not to believe in anything you haven’t experienced yourself. There is great truth in the popular saying on the spiritual path: when the student is ready the teacher will come. I would add to it that the teacher comes unexpectedly and often from a whole other direction than you’d imagine. I can see now the entertaining of my Jewish identity there in Safed was coming from my unconscious need to belong to a particular spiritual path, not just from feeling a strong sense of belonging to the Jewish people, and that I was searching for a path even though I didn’t know it. I can also see now that Sri Aurobindo, and the Mother, a Jew, who I would be introduced to later in Israel, as where there’s one there will be the other, meaning the Mother and Sri Aurobindo, who guided my steps through that need there to my steps here in India, where I now live.

I should say that my teachers have advised me not to flash their names unnecessarily, not to advertise their path to the public or seek converts to it. I’m speaking of them and their path because it’s in the need of the narrative to do so. Their path might be compared to Judaism in that, you’ll be discouraged from joining their yoga by their followers if you express interest, until it’s very clear you have the inner calling, the soul need, and even then it will take you years of both inner and outer study to get a grasp of what their yoga is and entails so immense is the body of their written (and spoken) works and so demanding on your concentration is the opening of the inner consciousness and the keeping of it open in order to have inner contact with them, your soul, and the divine, so demanding you have to learn to concentrate on nothing else, which becomes possible once you begin to see all is the divine, or yoga, or soul process, or however you figure it, that thing or work in front of you just an overlay on God, the fact that it’s God is what you’re looking at while involved with it, which enables you to give it the justice it needs or deserves. And therein lies the whole of Jewish law. It aims to make life holy. Beyond itself, it calls for a life divine.

Afar they seemed a symbol imagery,
Illumined originals of the shadowy script
In which our sight transcribes the ideal Ray,
Or icons figuring a mystic Truth,
But, nearer, Gods and living Presences.
A march of friezes marked the lowest steps;
Fantastically ornate and richly small,
They had room for the whole meaning of a world,
Symbols minute of its perfection’s joy,
Strange beasts that were Nature’s forces made alive
And, wakened to the wonder of his role,
Man grown an image undefaced of God
And objects the fine coin of Beauty’s reign;
But wide the terrains were those levels serve.

from Savitri by Sri Aurobindo
(Courtesy of Sri Aurobindo Ashram Press)

Sri Aurobindo is the someone I mentioned earlier who’d had the divine experience I’ve described, and in this passage from his almost 24,000 line epic poem, which I could best sum up as a map of existence, he pictures it differently than I do but paints the same basic picture. He’s speaking of Overmind, the plane of the cosmic Gods, the highest plane in the universe, the summit of Mind, and in the passage he’s describing the lowest tier of Overmind, the one we’ve made contact with, as he explains earlier, because it’s not too steep for our mortal tread, and from where comes the world’s religions.

They do not come a complete formation from Overmind however, are the result of only partial seeings and momentary glimpses, and in some if not many cases the resulting religion is not even close to Overmind’s original intent, the religion we have down here an interpretation of ideals from up there, in many if not in most cases a bad one, especially when a manmade tradition has taken the ball and ran with it for centuries, the tradition becoming the law to live by more than the thing-in-itself, the original divine intent. The tradition will do things like put veils on women’s faces, cover their whole body as well, when only being modestly dressed was originally called for, things like make a man not only divine but the God of all gods, when in the beginning he was only believed to be the son of God, and things like give Jews a soul above and apart from the rest of humanity, when originally only a distinct group within humanity, a people, had been created. The tendency in the interpretation is to take things as far as they can possibly go, and in doing so, they grow farther and farther from the truth of things.

Of those who believe in God, the tendency is to feel that either one religion is true and all the others false, or that each one expresses something different about the same God. In the more inclusive view of the latter we can also go to Buddhism, where they have replaced the one God with a transformation of enlightenment. In a broader vision of that view, all religions are seen as incomplete attempts to capture the same Whole, be that God or the Absolute. The view I’m presenting would agree with that last but be more specific than that and see that each religion down here comes from its own divine house up there, up there being in the upper reaches of our own minds, albeit there being a gulf separating those regions from us so tenacious is the lid between our minds and there. There wouldn’t be a one to one correspondence either, one house to each religion, how I’m presenting it for simplicity’s sake, but a hardly imaginable variety of the blending of houses and the repetition of houses housing the same ideal, with minor variations, multiplicities our one thing at a time bound mind can’t fathom, what the blending of two houses in Sikhdom and the striking similarities between houses, such as that between Judaism and Islam, give us some picture of that.

Each house houses, as I’ve mentioned, a divine ideal or ideals, which we can also call attributes of God, since, as the light or ray of God enters the universe, to use an understandable image for illustration’s sake, it’s filtered through Overmind, which acts like a prism, and God’s ray is separated into His attributes, they becoming divine beings unto themselves, the cosmic Gods, and, again, I’ve greatly over simplified a process too multifarious for our hold one image at time mind, as no house would be bereft of the other ideals or attributes or be mutually exclusive to the others, what can be glimpsed in the Christian house, where the seeming opposites of compassion and wrath commingle and express a world. The thing here to see is that, because it’s a personified attribute of God or the Absolute, the Supreme an image and term that might capture both, any and every house sees itself as the Supreme, meaning the central divinity in a house, identifies itself as That, and here’s the tricky part: it doesn’t see itself as the Supreme in its entirety, holds a simultaneous view of identity incompatible with the ego’s singular grasp of itself, the very center of its see you might say, and so this nuance in identity gets lost in translation, and each religion sees itself as mutually exclusive to all the others, resulting in such divisive formulas as: there is no God but Allah, and Mohammed is His prophet; Jesus is God, either believe that or go to hell forever; there is no Self or soul and to see such is to be deluded; and we can continue.

Of course my view of the origins of the religions of the world has been greatly informed by my teachers the Mother and Sri Aurobindo, so much so the word ‘infinitely’ would not be totally out of line, but it has its base in what I’ve seen with my own eyes, while on acid notwithstanding, and it’s also based on inner seeing not influenced by any substances, inner contact with individual houses, many of the ones involved with earth, over the course of many years, which is a story for later on, lost now because it just sounds too fantastically impossible at this point with only one divine experience under my belt in this book so far.

There in that apartment in Safed with Mosheheim, however, my view had not reached such sophistication of detail, but it was there in a more basic form, but he would hear none of it, was not interested in my experiences or even me really. I was for him a test of his theory of the main difference between Jews and gentiles: inherent in the former was the capacity to get close to God, in the latter no.

I saw this quite clearly when, near the closing of that Shabbot, I was overcome with a feeling of devotion, with bhakti, for the Supreme, and I stood there awhile and just basked in it, tears rolling down my cheeks. It just suddenly came upon me with the song “Secure Yourself” by the Indigo Girls. In the morning he had put on what he called his Shabbot tapes, all the songs that made him feel bhakti or something of the Supreme, which wasn’t religious music but American pop music and rock and roll. As I stood there in that rather emotional attitude of worship, he was intently watching me from the kitchen, I in the dinning part of the living room. I could feel him watching me and hadn’t lose myself in God as much as it seemed I had, but there was some genuine feeling there. When I returned to myself after the song was over, he said he had a special capacity to judge if people were sincere or not in their love of God. I asked him if I had passed his test. Obviously disappointed, he said yes I had.

All this, however, was based on a misunderstanding of what constitutes real devotion, on the part of Moshehiem, on the part of me, on the part of the whole world of religion. Today, except in very extraordinary and rare moments, I wouldn’t pass the real test, although I spend the majority of my time in the reality of my immediate environment, in the relative quiet of that, and do that out of preference, because I know it’s there and not in whatever media that I’m in a better position to get a glimpse of God strolling by in the whirl of things, or witnessing up out at me from the crux of my inner life. When you need external stimuli, such as a book, or a song, or a fiery sermon, when you need yourself drummed up to feel it, you are very far from what it means to have contact with the Supreme, inside or outside, although God is right there right now everything you experience, the presence of the Hostile Powers and everything ugly and mean notwithstanding. You see what I’m saying? Put the book down and look.

Say, just for the purposes of demonstration, a religion would be built upon the preceding paragraph. It wouldn’t take long before that would be interpreted to mean not to read any books, magazines or newspapers, listen to any music or what have you, and TVs, radios and media players would be destroyed, the internet banned, computers blown up, smart phones smashed, and on and on. That’s not what I’m saying, although we’d do well to destroy all television sets and smart phones if we had a choice of what to destroy—I’m just saying.

The thing is, what is most misunderstood about us, we’re each at a different level of development and therefore need different things at different times. Some people need their nose in books (or whatever) for hours on end, but not all of their lives, only for a stage in it—another misunderstood thing: development happens. You don’t just force yourself to suddenly go media-free either, or force someone else to for that matter. That’s a violence that will certainly be too rigid a stance that makes you unable to tell when you do actually need media, and you always will to a certain degree such is the nature of being human. Weaning yourself off media has to be a natural movement that comes about from your inner development calling for it.

It has taken me many years to prefer unaugmented reality over all the media I can put between me and it, but that doesn’t mean I don’t read the news, surf the net, read or write a book, escape in a movie, or rock out to a song. It just means that most of my time is spent without media, and I prefer it that way. That began happening during those three years of intense inner experience I’ve repeatedly referred to, although at the onset I got rid of TV. My spiritual/metaphysical experiences became more interesting than anything manmade. When you begin to see God in the hours, God in your inner life, the world’s media is pale by comparison, and boring, although in the absence of God it’ll do. I predict the next big world-shaking revolution, the developmental one we’ve been waiting for, won’t come about because of technology but by the absence of it.

But don’t misunderstand me. I’ll fast forward three or four months in time, from this moment in Safed, to when I was working day labor in Eilat. The dust, the heat, the dryness, was more than we could bear. For days we’d been moving an old warehouse into a new building across the street, ten hours a day without any breaks except some minutes to eat the lunch we’d brought, if we’d brought one, any official breaks that is. You can really milk drinking water when you have to. It was a building supply warehouse, and you know how much stuff that is? It was awful. We’d hitch-hiked almost the whole length of the Dead Sea to get there to Eilat, where we’d heard there was work, myself and the three friends I would team up with soon after leaving Safed for Tel Aviv. Demoralized, I just wanted to quit and go jump in the Red Sea. We were clearing out stuff near the old checkout counters, when, all of a sudden, a Tracy Chapman song rang out clear and strong. I think it was “Fast Car”. As soon as her voice sounded, I saw blue auric light come out of the radio, which I hadn’t noticed until it was turned on, wide streaks of blue light that disappeared as soon as I saw them, and I hadn’t seen auras in days. Someone had noticed the radio and turned it on. It was like feeling a sea breeze ride a rainbow through our despair, and it was good. We all just stood there for some minutes and let the song carry us far away. Later that day I got everybody to stop working long enough to get the boss to agree to give us regular breaks, and it was that song that gave me the nerve.

Of all the things you make for me, you the whole human sense of you, what you make and create as a matter of course, without even having me in mind, like the food I eat, the clothes I wear, the chair I sit in, the book I read or movie I watch, and on and on, it’s music I’m most grateful for, even though I’d die without some of the other things. It so sounds sometimes feelings in my soul.

It wouldn’t be fair to leave Moshehiem’s apartment on the note of my discovery of his ethnocentric aim in inviting me there, as if any of us are entirely singular in our aims. There was some genuine charity there. And there was also something else, not separate from his ethnocentricity, but nonetheless it was something I needed to see and something only a Jewish person could properly show me, one that had worn the black of the ultra-orthodox, the Hasidic, Jew. I told him of an encounter I’d had with a young man on the street the day before. He was yet too young to have any kind of beard to speak of, but his attitude of orthodoxy was there plain as day on his face and in his eyes as he, running in the other direction, stopped, turned to me, giving a condescending look, and said, “Why?” referring to my long hair, which was well past my shoulders and at that moment I was wearing down, it parted in the middle sandy blond and slightly wavy, bouncing this way and that as I walked. I also had a long untrimmed beard. People often said I looked like the historical Jesus. Funny I didn’t appear to be Jewish to many Jews when they looked at me. Anyway, I gave him an equally disdainful look and, pointing with my eyes to his black attire and so out of touch with the climate clothes, said, “You, why?” He tottered a moment wondering at me and then sped off. I was left with this feeling of pity for the boy, realizing he’d probably spend the rest of his life in, how I saw it then, his religious prison without walls.

Some believe reality is just weird, and that there isn’t any truth to it, in the spiritual sense of truth that is, and it’ll show you whatever truth you believe in, as if your belief will arrange reality to conform to it, at least to the degree it seems your truth gets validated by circumstances often enough it’s kept alive. Spend time with the believers of any faith, and you’ll begin to suspect reality is quite weird in that way. But there’s another way to see it. The Supreme will fill any container made for it regardless of its shape and size, happy to have one to fill, a universe for example, a divine house within the cosmos, or even an atheistic system of philosophy, the Supreme in itself too big for any container, and it’ll back up our belief system with fortuitous circumstance and synchronicity, with many reasons to believe or not to. The thing is, you always have to be open to what’s bigger than your belief, since the Supreme always will be, and that’s really hard when you’re content with your microscopic world (in comparison to That) and the scraps the Supreme sends from time to time.

Back then I didn’t know the Supreme fills any and every container that entertains it, even those that speculate that It isn’t, and I was surprised to hear Hasidic Jews had their little corner on God. Mosheheim explained to me and made me see that the boy who questioned my hair wasn’t wearing a prison uniform; he was being humble. They wore the same clothes so to minimize the ego, did many things for that reason, and, if you can get past the black, hoary clothes and all the hair, that’s no different from Buddhist robes and shaved heads, and you can begin to appreciate their effort to quiet the same animal we all live with, although most of us aren’t trying to minimize it. It’s also part of their practice to learn to not allow sensation, such as heat, cold, hunger, taste, thirst, etc. to come before them and their God, and so they weren’t wearing such a hot getup because they were just rigid as all getout. It was a constant practice helping them to put God before their comfort, although there in Safed, because of its higher elevation, it wasn’t often very hot. You might imagine though, in places such as Jerusalem and the desert settlements, what a sweat you worked up just walking down the street. The Hasidic movement started in Eastern Europe in the 18th  century, where their dress matched the climate, and they didn’t adapt it to the hotter environment. Of course there are better ways to minimize the ego, namely I’d say by not giving into its need to do something one way and one way only and its stubborn habit to be inflexible when faced with change, but theirs, despite its drawbacks, is a way. I didn’t appreciate that before Moshehiem.

These are normal meditation hunters—ah the bubbles of God. They aren’t seeking enlightenment, and the change of consciousness they want is one of degree, not kind, where the ego is minimized so God is put first as much as possible, not where the ego is surpassed altogether and they enter the next higher mode of consciousness called by many names: realization, no-self, consciousness without an object, liberation, Silent Mind, and others. Even still, I would imagine some very few slip through and make it, but it’s not a stated goal or even central to their teachings. I’d also imagine those that do either hide it or leave Hasidism, since it’s not a state of consciousness compatible with orthodoxy or with strict obedience to rules and laws, and neither is it a state easily accessible by those things, as much as the religious or spiritual-minded seem to think it is or should be, even in Buddhism, which has that as its aim. If it were, millions and millions would be enlightened.

It’s the spiritual paradox of enlightenment, which I might come close to somewhat capturing by the phrase we quoted to each other often in Green Beret school, The Special Forces Qualification Course: if you ain’t cheatin’ you ain’t tryin’, and if you get caught you ain’t SF. It’s only a sideways resemblance, but it’s still an apt analogy. I’ll explain. We lost half the class on the land navigation week during phase 1 at Camp Mackall. At the end of a week of training, using a map and compass, we had 24 hours to find four metal stakes in the day and at least one in the night (four for a perfect score) at given sets of coordinates, carrying a rucksack, an M-16 and an outdated map, the stakes in the worst places, in swamps, thickets and such, and placed to take full advantage of the confusion an outdated map would bring, such as a stake shown on the map to be on one side of road, but since the map had been made the road had moved, and now the stake was on the other side, and so forth. The rules were: you could not follow a road or even be near one, unless you were near a stake near a road (FTR—follow the road, was another refrain of ours); you couldn’t be within a 20 meters of another student, unless you were at a stake, and even then you couldn’t talk to one another; you could only use your flashlight within ten meters of a stake. If you got caught breaking the rules you failed the test and hence the whole course. The problem was, unless you broke the rules you couldn’t pass the test.

You see now the paradox of realization? We have to use the ego to overcome the ego, but the ego’s way of doing things can’t be the only way, which I might partly sum up by listing its preference for assured footing, its wish to take simple ordered steps, its love of rule and law, its aptness to be strict and inflexible, its will for everyone to be the same, and its principle of exclusion. Even to minimize the ego, much less to become realized, you face the paradox.

That thing has touched the wall.
It’s horrible.
It’s not in your history books.
It’s around us all the time.
It’s powerful.
It’s got a way with words.
It’s from another dimension,
another world.

There are monsters in our midsts,
and they’re all around us.
You can’t see them.
I have visions they’re here.
I see them all the time.
I know they’re here.

They’re demons,
hostile forces attached to the universe
that seem to destroy it,
are against God’s plan,
against the Light.
They are unreservedly unholy,
vicious and mean,
and they’re here for a reason.
They test God’s plan,
test it thoroughly.

They get by without it.
They’re just demons.
They’re monstrous.
They came out of Nowhere.
They will be converted in time’s end.
They are a huge mistake,
unwilling and dim.

You can’t stop them.
Their food you can stop giving them.
Their food is us.
They are the cosmic grazers
of horrible energies.
They destroy the world,
or they give it a good go
testing God’s plan by contrarying it,
and on this point they’re lost.
They can only see their feeding space,
and their utter hatred of goodness and light.

Their maniacalness
doesn’t know how to defend itself.
They go too far.
They grandly fuck up.
I am a product of that
I’m here to tell you.
It’s the story of the wall.
It’s nonexistence,
the very limits of human existence.
And stay tuned.

They eat our goodwill.
It’s not what they want.
You’ll have to view the laws of discrimination.
This has brought them along.
Lookin’ for dog,
horrible creature
in every human business.
They are the communiqué of doom that rules the world,
and how long it’s gonna take you to learn that.
This is the conspiracy,
and they are not human,
savvy?

And we’ve put all goodness aside.
They’re lying.
They are just the level we are at.
They don’t control the cosmos.
They are not Gods.
They can’t even control themselves.
All the particulars let’s leave down to a science
buy ice cream.

A hell of a way to pay for the world,
they get you with your delight,
right where it rubs the world wrong,
whatever it is.
Throw off that fun yoke, will yah?
My God these are clever creatures.
Can you find them?

And it’s here we rob the world.
You’re just not gonna see us,
and we’ve spoken today
of how you rule us.
It’s in our acts you see.
I think we’ve got a demon by the horns.
That looks like
how to control them.
They’re there
you know.
Don’t give them what they want,
harm to yourself or your world.
I think that’s the duty of humankind.
It’s also how we end evil
once and for all:
don’t give them what they want.
Don’t even try.

And you’ve harmonized them,
an integral harmony
that puts them in their right place:
the testers of our degree of God.
That’s what they’re there for,
despite themselves,
and they just hate it.
See them?

The individual series
comin’ up next.
The long and short of it is
you’ve got to see it to believe it.
You can’t get over how it crows,
and that’s hands down
the shit eating grin.

I’m gonna flip
and tell you
a star in knowin’ things could hardly know Nothin’,
but you don’t give the Devil’s worth.
You know I’m talkin’ Supermind,
the Station beyond this universe.
Get it right,
and that’s a tadpole,
and I give you the frog later on.

Lose your temper.
He’s not gonna do it,
tell you
little human shapes
justify God’s expression in time.
Beat on those
a whole universe worth of seeing.
Just three verses:
taking more to movie to;
we are bystanders;
that really belongs to the Earth,
Heaven’s gate,
with all due respects.

What have we done?
Brought the inviolate Supermind to Earth,
the Truth Consciousness on our home planet.
And there it is.
It’s a box warning.
A box is not your life.

Next post:

Chapter 6
Legends of School

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 3

Jewish National Fund poster, ca. 1960. From the National Library of Israel Ephemera Collection

The Fruit Fly and the Blessing

We return from the past to the present of this story, Safed, the constructing arm of the spiral galaxy of this story. The social life there in Safed, or the one I was around, revolved around Shabbot, or the Sabbath, which started at the blast of a horn sundown on Friday and ended at another horn blast sundown on Saturday. What you can and cannot do or buy on the Sabbath has been and still is a source of debate in Western culture, not only among Jews, and when I was a boy, which wasn’t very long ago comparatively speaking, the Texas Blue Laws made it hard to buy things on Sundays, the Christian sabbath, things like a saw or screwdriver, any hardware, and restrictions on buying alcohol on Sunday are yet part of Texas law. But however holy we hold them, days like these don’t have an identity; we give them one. I think that’s basically what Jesus was trying to say to his day.

The whole week was a preparation for that day it seemed, what with all the shopping and cooking throughout the week that came to a frantic crescendo as the horn threatened to blow on sundown Friday. The day was not, at least not as I encountered it with the Jews I was with while I was in Israel, a time of quiet reflection and prayer, or of inward turning, and I’m not talking about the study and contemplation of books, which wouldn’t have been around when the day had originally been set aside, it being set aside, from my perspective, why there was no work, so you would be unencumbered by duties and could seek inner contact with the divine, but then you’d have people that would actually make that contact, admittedly few, but that contact has such an impact many would come to know about it, and you’d have a religion in constant evolution, something tradition abhors, and Jewish tradition, if anything, is exceptionally traditional, and even Reform Judaism, which tries to make allowances for that evolution, falls convincingly short.

It was a day of celebration and revelry, as I saw it anyway, and my vision wasn’t incorrect: the divine aspect of joy was stressed in the orthodoxy there in Safed. There were two principle meals, as I’ve mentioned, the first meal Shabbis on Friday evening, a modest affair compared to the big dinner of the week, the second meal on Saturday afternoon, where neighbors and family came to table together to eat, drink, and be merry. It was a time of sharing, being with your friends and family and enjoying a good meal, one usually many contributed the cooking for. There was also the tradition of going out and finding a Jewish person who didn’t have a dinner to go to and inviting them to your Shabbis meal, and so strangers also often sat at the table too, ones who didn’t or couldn’t contribute anything but their presence. Zeke had benefited from this tradition that night in Jerusalem, and I, though non-Jew, did too here in Safed, getting an invitation to Mosheheim’s house, also in that square in the artist’s quarter, for a sleepover no less. I was overjoyed at the invitation, which meant a night sleeping indoors and some good food, and I’d heard he was a good cook. He also turned out to be a good storyteller.

Body types abound in humanity, and they transcend race. Among those there is the at once recognizable bear of a man who has an open face that regards the world kindly and with a smile. Santa Claus is of this type. It’s not that Moshehiem (I don’t know if that’s the spelling) was always happy when you saw him; it’s that being sad or cross were moods not so native to his public character at least, however much he may have entertained those unlovely guests in private. He was, however, like Zeke, a Jew first and a human being second. He was part of the core group surrounding Avraham’s studio, although he had his own place and spent most of his time there. I didn’t know why he invited me, not at first at least, but I’d been in Safed a week or so by then, very present in and around the studio, and I was making waves because I wasn’t Jewish but was as serious about divine matters as they were, was a lover of God as much as they were. They believed but I had seen, speaking of divinity and speaking in a matter that smacks of a big head, but pardon me it’s also the truth here. That’s a difference (between believers and seers) hard to ignore but equally as hard to put your finger on, and when you did, if you only believed, you didn’t quite know what to do, examine yourself as to why you hadn’t seen, put the person who had on a pedestal, or put them somewhere they didn’t crowd in on your self-satisfaction at your religiousness, most preferably out of the picture.

I don’t remember where I was at that moment in investigating my own Jewish identity, but I hadn’t had the kippah dream yet and wasn’t wearing one. I remember talking conversion over with Moshehiem, and he was the one who filled me in on the ins and outs of converting, what a Shabbot Goy was and how I could become that for them, which is a gofer and errand boy not bound by the law, although he did not like the word goy, and he explained it as a racial and derogatory term for a non-Jew, akin in character to the word nigger, although it seems to me the n-word carries such a history of violence it’s not really in the same category as the word goy. Funny how he didn’t like that word but held feelings of racial superiority. Racism is like that; no one knows they’re racist.

Funny how human that is, to be an unconscious racist but espouse to hate racism, get it out of your vocabulary but not out of your heart. I don’t think a one of us is completely free of that hypocrisy, and when we start to see that we’ll finally be able to truly address racism among us. This bears more than a moment’s pause and is an idea I’ll return to often. We tend to see racism and bigotry as morally wrong, as an aberration of nature, but it is in fact natural to the animal us, to the ego nature, to see people from other groups as less human than people from ours, meaning they don’t deserve the same respect or rights as us, and the more different they are, a different skin color for example, the less humanity we give them. Education and inner development helps override this natural tendency in ourselves, but it does’t obliterate it. If you are sincere with yourself you can still see it.

Although I identify more as a human being than a White person, I still catch myself looking out White eyes, and when I do I try and catch from where it’s coming from inside me. It’s not hard to see it’s not coming from my soul but from the animal ego. Although most everyone would say it’s because I was indoctrinated as a child to see out those eyes, I’m afraid it goes deeper than that, although that certainly amplifies it. The roots of racism are in the very nature of the human ego, as I’ve suggested above, what would have to be more than rearranged if we want to get rid of racism, in all its forms, religious bigotry included; we’d have to get rid of the ego. Be that as it may, it seems to me that I had those conversion conversations with Moshehiem after I’d stayed with him and not during, but I don’t exactly remember.

What I remember most of my Shabbot with him was his stories. I guess it was my dad’s stories of being in the army that got me hooked on hearing people tell stories, as his were so animated and detailed, put me there for instance as the fuel depot blew up when he, as a joke, to scare the Black attendant sergeant filling up his jerry can, took out the lighter he kept as a memento of something or another, the one that had stopped working months before, that he’d take out and flick every now and then. That time he flicked it, it lit, impossibly, and I could just see he and the sergeant hauling ass out of there as the flames shot up to the sky, the whole place going up in a matter of minutes, the surprise on my dad’s face bigger than the sergeant’s, a surprise I could feel in myself hearing the story. He said it almost re-started the Korean War, as this happened there just a couple of months or so after the war had ended, and everyone thought the North Koreans did it. When the truth came out, no one said anything to my dad, or so he said, so relieved it wasn’t the enemy. True or not, that story, along with his others about being a G.I., sparked in me a love to sit at someone’s feet so to speak and hear their stories, did not conflict with my love to tell my own, although you had to be interesting, had to know how to tell a story and give me enough of an image so I could see it in my mind’s eye, else you’d just be hearing a bunch of my stories and have a hard time to get a word in edgewise. Nobody’s perfect I keep trying to tell you.

The first image Moshehiem invoked in my mind was that of he and three or four other friends looking out an upper window at the stars at night and wondering over God, having come to a room upstairs, on their own, one by one, to get away from the noise and whatnot of the acid-dropping party happening downstairs, and the surprise he felt, they all felt, when they discovered they were all Jewish, all the Jews in the party. The room was only lit by star shine and the diffused glow of streetlights coming from the window, and with that soft darkness and the quiet in the room muffling the noise coming from below, combined with the mind-expanding effects of the LSD, which gives such a sense of destiny upon events, they had been taken out of the party, where all the non-Jews were, and into rapt contemplation upon God. He said they all looked at one another knowingly, as it had happened as if by design, the separation of the Jews from the rest, the non-Jews, who were all down there partying it up.

His story had come about because we’d been talking about the concept of the Jewish soul, a concept I’d been encountering more the more I was around Jews while in Israel, me being non-Jewish, a concept that, no matter how you sliced it, seemed to me to be racist. It proposed that there were two basic and fundamental groups in humanity, the Jew and the gentile. I’d been surprised to find that many Jews believed in reincarnation, especially the ones who hold the Kabbalah in high esteem, but I’d also been surprised, dismayed more like it, to find they believed the Jewish soul always reincarnated as a Jew, and the gentile never as a Jew, although one would if they converted, the immortal soul, as they saw it, being susceptible to manmade manipulation and device, the whim of the ego. The above story was the example Moshehiem gave me of the difference between the Jewish soul and the gentile, what had shown to him there was a difference, what had begun to set him apart from non-Jews, as up until that time he’d not made any distinction and mixed freely with other young people. The difference, he said, wasn’t one of superiority, but that it was the Jewish soul that could draw neigh to God, that was drawn to God, while the non-Jewish soul couldn’t, or not very easily, and wasn’t called to be close to God, not his exact words, but the gist of it.

He was neither a Torah scholar nor a rabbi, although he had spent some time as an Hasidic Jew and a little crazy time thinking he was the Mashiach, the Jewish Messiah, experiences that would give one some intense thoughts on such matters you’ve got to figure, and this is how he viewed the difference between the Jewish soul and non. It doesn’t say in the Torah that Jews have one soul and gentiles another, but it does say Jews are a people chosen by God, have a covenant with Him, does set Jews apart from non-Jews, proscribing what Jews and non-Jews can do together and what they can’t, such as Jews not being allowed to leave their wine with gentiles or let them cook their food, and it can be said without a doubt that many of the restrictions on Jewish diet and behavior was to restrict their social interaction with non-Jews. And so the separation was part of the religion of Judaism in its foundation, something I believe has more to do with the formation of the human ego, or its final form rather, than with an intrinsic separation to last an eternity, but let us return to the idea of the Jewish soul and look to see, since it didn’t originate in the Torah, the founding text of Judaism, perhaps why and how it came to be.

First let’s look at an offshoot of Judaism, Christianity, in order to draw an analogy. Although the virgin birth of Jesus is a central part of Christian doctrine, a belief not even questioned by most Christians, the same was said of Confucius, and probably of many others that people of old wanted venerated who have been lost to history. It was said of Confucius to give him authority, and it was the same in the case of Jesus, only with him it was more a moral necessity and was created, made up, to escape the fact that a teenage girl had him out of wedlock, making him a fatherless child, a stigma in that culture and at that time akin to being a criminal in today’s society, an inevitable  persecution he would have faced at the hands of his society interestingly left out of the Gospels. That persecution we might call the primary school of Jesus, what he cut his teeth on, so pronounced a suffering it was upon his early life, and we can draw many parallels from this discrimination and his compassionate teachings if we were on the subject.

At any rate, people in his society did not consider him the son of God when he was growing up, and no one would’ve accepted him as the Mashiach if they knew that he was a bastard once he’d died, and so the founders of the Christian religion invented the story of the virgin birth to give him the moral authority he needed to overcome the stigma he represented, however much it is indeed possible his birth was heralded by an angel to Mary similar to how Buddha’s mother was foretold in a dream her son had an extraordinary destiny to fulfill, be either a great king or spiritual leader, and aren’t these parallels between the King of the Jews and the Enlightened One revealing? Their houses (heavens) were, in my divine experience, side by side.

Likewise, in the Jewish tradition, while the creation of the idea of a separate Jewish soul wasn’t to give that soul authority, or not specifically, it also came about as an invention of man, but in this case to make the Jewish soul, and hence the Jew, as distinct from other humans as possible, the soul in its usage being, even figuratively for people who don’t believe in a soul, the essence of a person, the deepest we go. If something is said to be in the soul, it’s like saying it’s really real.

Unlike the virgin birth concept in Christianity, however, the idea of a Jewish soul did not arise immediately but resulted from a long process of evolution of Jewish thought and tradition, and nor was the idea simply a caprice of the human mind, to cover a hole people wanted filled, as was the case with the Christian virgin birth. I’d imagine the origin of the idea can most likely be found in the origins of Jewish mysticism, where there were Jewish mystics having spiritual and metaphysical experiences, though within the confines of their house, their divine ideal, quite sophisticated experience compared to the churning ocean of the mass of humanity around them, who was concerned with much lesser things, surface phenomena, not the deeps of God, and they, like the Vedic Rishis of India, like other mystic groups, attributed the phenomenon and capacity to their religion and racial type. It’s a prejudice and is because the mystical experience within the confines of any divine house will be just as sophisticated, however different if may be in terms of ideals stressed, not of course with coarse people, but with seers who have reached the level of development the Vedic Rishis and the early Jewish mystics had. In passing it’d be appropriate to note that Jesus, whom we can at least agree was a Jewish mystic, probably had the divine experience I’ve mentioned and seen the “many mansions” in the house of God.

The idea of the Jewish soul comes from an ignorance of soul development, an evolution that would transcend the limits of time and space, and so language too, and so I can only paint impressionistic pictures. There’s more to the soul than its human part evolving, what we call the individual soul that’s putting on one body after another in this present eternity we find ourselves in, which is not the only one we’ve been in nor the last we will be in. In regards to that human part, there is a tremendous deal of diversity in levels of maturity, a mature soul being one that can concretely grasp its embodiment and lead the life, what may take many thousands of embodiments. It happens within this evolution of souls that every and any kind of grouping can take place to quicken both the development of individual human souls and the world soul, where groups of souls come together for that reason, a quickening, one that not only effects the individual souls involved but the whole human race, what acts like a leavening agent upon humanity, a grouping together of the human soul, not a creation of different kinds of human souls. Such a grouping can provide a system and structure for the quickening to continue, though quite diminished, sometimes to the point of being dead, long after the original initiating group has left the scene; such a grouping can create a religion such as Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and Christianity for that matter, and I can continue.

Judaism stands unique among the modern world religions because it created a people within humanity, a more apt word for what Jews are than race or nation. It also stands unique for a reason more vital to the entire race, but more on that later. The birth of the Jewish people had the divine as a midwife, was created by a house on the divine plane to embody on earth the ideal of that house. The people did not eventually come about as a result of all being of the same religion; it was created hand in hand with the establishment of Judaism, in a covenant a divine made with a human man, who was the head of a large family, Abraham, a promise that from his family there would arise a great people, and it wasn’t until much later that the religion was more formally established, although the worship of that divine and that one alone, the ideal of that house being there is only one God and making life holy for His sake, was the part of the covenant the people had to fulfill, was present in the very beginning.

That it was a people a divine house established and not only a religion, makes Jewish identity among the strongest of peoples on the planet, makes Judaism a religion in the bones and not only in the heart and mind. Seeing it in this light makes it more understandable how such a segregating idea as a separate soul was created by Jewish thought, and I can say that it came from the Jewish mind (was invented) with such certainty because the overriding knowledge you come away with from soul contact is the identity we share with all things living and non. You don’t see your people as having a separate soul. It’s a different group soul within the soul of humanity, and of those, there are many.

My discussion with Moshehiem about the Jewish soul did not come anywhere near the depth I’m discussing here, and I see now I’d have been more to the point if I’d have talked to him about it from the perspective, metaphysically speaking, of when the Jewish soul supposedly had been created, with Abraham or at Mt. Sinai (tradition has it that every Jewish soul was present when the Torah was handed down at Sinai, meaning any real Jew has been incarnating as a Jew at least since then). It doesn’t really matter if it’s one or the other or both, since it poses implausible theories in regards to the inviolable and immortal soul that more readily reveal the origin of the concept, that being the human intellect, than does what I focused on with Moshehiem, which was the afterlife.

“Come on Moshehiem, you mean at death the Jews are separated from everyone else? Do Jews go to heaven and the gentiles to hell? How is that different than the Christian belief that, no matter what kind of person you are, if you’re a Christian you go to heaven, and if you’re not you go to hell?”

“No, no, gentiles don’t go to hell. They have an afterlife…”

I just cut him off. “Separate but equal right? Where have I heard that before?”

“With Jews the afterlife is concerned with being close to God, giving glory to God, and the gentile afterlife with…” He paused to consider his words.

“With what?” I asked, jumping on his obvious difficulty in making it sound like the gentile afterlife wasn’t inferior to the Jewish.

We were in his apartment standing near the table just outside the kitchen, where he was cooking dishes for the second Shabbis meal, which was the next day, this being late Friday afternoon before the Shabbot horn, and he was pressed for time. It was a small place but nice, an old stone house of sorts that was conjoined with a row of them on that side of the square, which was to the left of Avraham’s studio as you faced his studio. He returned to the kitchen and spoke from there. “There’s just no way to understand these things with the human mind,” he offered, using an argument I often used. “Gentiles have an afterlife, go to heaven and all that, are not in death necessarily separate from Jews, although there would be some kind of separation, gentiles getting what is right for them, and Jews what’s right for Jews.”

“You’re intelligent. I’ll give you that, but think about it, it’s all a bit arbitrary don’t you think? Just by being born a Jew you can have an afterlife close to God, but if you’re a gentile, even if you’ve spent your life loving God, you have an afterlife further from Him. No matter how you put it, you’re still speaking as though the Jewish soul is superior to the gentile. I mean, what’s higher than God, if you see what I’m saying?” He did, but refused to admit it.

Reality really is much stranger than fiction, and, as it happens, what became apparent only after many years in interpreting the divine experience, when we die we don’t all go to the same place, not by a long shot, although we do go to ‘the other side’, the place of the dead, unless we are unfortunate and become ghosts trapped here. Nor do we all ‘end’ our afterlife journey in a heaven that we eventually rise above as well in our journey to becoming again our pure soul, so as to take on another life and body, but for the purposes of illustration it can be said that we all do go to Heaven, but not some general, generic heaven, but the Heaven, or house, of our divine ideal, the one our soul is drawn to the most.

So, in a manner of speaking, Jews do have their own heaven, but not all Jews go there; the ones whose soul is drawn to another divine ideal go to that Heaven. In other words, what Heaven, or divine house, you go to isn’t based on blood, on the flesh, but on what religion or divine ideal your soul is most drawn to in this your present life, and in the impossible to our ways way of soul and difference in the way time passes on the other side than on material earth, some souls might go here and there.

It’s crucial to understanding soul process, and hence its inviolability, to realize it isn’t passed through sperm and gene, as I’m sure most Jewish rabbis would tell you, but when you get into the ins and outs, the semantics, of the concept of a Jewish soul, that’s what it boils down to, something dependent on material process and heredity, something passed from parent (mother) to child. As for when it incarnates, at conception, at this or that trimester in the womb, it’s also crucial to understand that uniformity has nothing do with the spontaneity and plasticity of soul process. It incarnates in an infant once the vehicle is sufficiently formed for its needs, which is not the same for every child born, and in some cases, that might even occur shortly after birth and not in the womb. It’s this question we’d have to base the issue of abortion on, not the morality of it: has the soul taken its vehicle yet or not? That can be determined by the mother and interested parties ‘seeing’ on the inside through dream and vision, which just sounds arbitrary hogwash now so far we are from knowing the reality of seeing inner reality.

The question would come up, from where does the soul come to take on a vehicle? Does it come, or they rather, in this pluralistic view, from all the houses or Heavens? After all, it’s drawn to this or that house. That would mean we would have separate souls, as we do egos, and that the soul does not transcend the Heavens, the universe, but is created in it and by it, and neither are those the case. But it is undergoing an evolution within the conditions of the cosmos, which I’ve called a process of maturation, or growing up. That would mean it changes and aligns with this divine ideal(s) in this incarnation, and with that one in another, with a lot of going back and forth and tarrying with this or that ideal(s) a few of incarnations, speaking of the human portion of the soul inside us, that portion of it individualized for the purposes of evolution, what’s called the psychic being in the yoga I follow, and there is infinitely more to the soul than that.

The human soul does not come from the Heaven its drawn to in its embodiment, if it’s drawn to any, and many aren’t, but a house can emanate itself into an incarnating human soul, or, more concretely, send down an avatar, an actual incarnation, which is extremely, extraordinarily rare I’m afraid. The emanation, however, is more common. In such a scenario, it’s easy to see how the concept of a separate Jewish soul, or an inherent, intrinsic Jewish ‘spark’ in the soul of Jews, a pintele yid it’s called, could come about: from an incomplete ‘seeing’.

The soul is not from around here I must stress, and it comes from a realm of oneness beyond the universe to incarnate in bodies on earth, and it’s not of spark of Jewishness the Jewish mystics saw, if the image of a spark comes from something seen in vision, but a spark from the fire of God they mistook for the fire of their ethnic group, understandably, if the human mass around their little, ordered, clean, Jewish island was yet raging in primitive man, something I’ll come back to later on, that ordered Jewish island when man was yet rather lost in chaos.

From afar in dream and vision the soul appears as an impossible to get to incredible, and dry, city at the bottom of the ocean, or one that lies in a blessed little valley so far below there is no hope to get there, but when you get right up to your soul, hold it in your hand, if you ever dream down deep enough to have it represented in dream, come into that holy, mute, dim shrine, which might be inside an ancient cavern, an ages old temple, or the puja room of an old Indian house, depending on how your dream maker makes it, it’s an unwavering, inextinguishable flame that you know is lit from the home fire of God. Personified in dream, when it meets you face to face, and in my dreams it’s always female, it comes to you as the sweetest, most trustworthy and nonjudgmental person you’ve ever known, or someone you know is that just by being in their presence. To actually go to the realm of soul is to be immersed in the boundlessness of Spirit. A point of light, yid, immersed in form, is just a representative surface. Can you see the difference between personal experience and belief? I’m showing it to you.

The Shabbot horn sounded sometime later. Moshehiem said it came from an ultra-orthodox community nearby, where it was like a trumpet of God to the people there, who dropped at once whatever they were doing, went indoors, and heeded the law of the Sabbath. I remember the pictures this posted in my mind: first, of a loud speaker high up on some pole, it sitting up there like some exclamation point in reality, then of people somewhat alarmed, somewhat relieved, scurrying about to get inside as quickly as possible, packages and parcels hanging this way and that on them, leaving the streets empty of life, like everyone that lived there had died so pronounced was the silence the streets presented to an outside witness eye. Moshehiem too stopped working, and we sat down to more conversation, he and I alone together, he, I already figured, curious about me, being non-Jew, and my love for God and the spiritual and metaphysical experiences I wore on my sleeve. It seemed strange to me though, knowing that was the case, that he didn’t really want to hear about me; he wanted to talk about himself and being Jewish. His unwillingness to listen to my stories I think was a combination of being around my eager ears that like to hear people’s stories, and the unease my over the top stories brought in people who likewise sought God and who wanted such experiences, but never got them.

I forget what he told me of the events that put him there in Israel, but he gave me a vivid image of him in a phone booth in New York City talking to a family member about his pressing need to reveal himself to other Jews as the Mashiach. It was time. The family member was trying to talk him down. I think they did manage to talk him home. I don’t know how long it’d been since the acid trip at that party, a couple of years I think, but it was after that trip that he’d begun to explore his Jewish identity, becoming in time a religious Jew. It would be interesting to know when and how exactly the notion of him being the Messiah entered his head, although I’m sure it had something to do with that idea being so prominent in the Orthodox Jewish mind, the coming of the Mashiach, but he didn’t exactly know himself. Whenever and however it came in, he found himself thinking about it more and more until it reached that breaking point, crossed that red line, where he actually believed it. This opened up what in psychology is known as a psychosis, where your inner reality sort of swallows up your outer reality, with all the weirdness that entails, something LSD is a window into if you want to see what it’s like to have your inner do that, not necessarily a bad thing, at least not when it’s your soul taking over or a very conscious, ordered inner being full of light, but not when it’s your subconscious.

On acid the experience is temporary and what you make of it, is what your set and setting make it, many times that being no more than a wonderful weirdness that gives your senses so much room to play, but if set and setting are the right combination, consciously arranged, painstakingly prepared, it can be a powerful healing experience, even a religious one, but a psychotic break is a whole other story than an acid trip, even if one triggers it, although a psychosis too can bring about healing if it’s handled as though it can. Whatever I experienced after my acid trip when I had that divine experience the world spiritual emergency describes it pretty well, but I’m sure some would call it a temporary psychosis. In Moshehiem’s case he said it took months for him to recover, from the Messiah notion, not the acid trip, but he hadn’t been hospitalized. When he came back to himself and got his feet back under him, he decided to go to Israel, and did so and made Aliya. I’m not sure when he became a Hasidic Jew, whether that was in New York or Israel, but by the time I met him he’d taken off those black garbs, that religious fur, and was just focusing on observing the Law and being a good Jew, but it was obvious to me that wasn’t enough, and he longed for more but had no idea what that would mean. He’d already tried what most try if they feel lacking in their religion: go as orthodox and strict as possible, to the extreme in the observance of your religion, and so doing we make the biggest mistake in regards to religion, which is to substitute it for God. It never works.

Encounter in a goodwill’s party that your story is welcome too, but here mine wasn’t, as I’ve mentioned, and when I tried to tell the story of my first acid trip, as a way to show him that non-Jews thought about God too when tripping, and not only thought about God but could actually have an experience of God, he cut me off before the trip could take off. Room, there wasn’t enough room. His being Jew took up all the space, and he didn’t want to hear spiritual stories from a non-Jew that made him question his belief in the spiritual superiority of Jews. Although it was like he hit me over the head, what being squelched has always felt like to me, and I get hit in the head more than listened to in my life, I was glad to be indoors, thankful he’d invited me and was spending such a concentrated time with me, not what I could actually call giving, as he had his reasons for bringing me there, and they weren’t the best of intentions I could see, but I thought “what the heck, so I can’t tell my stories. I can listen,” and so I did.

You got to be willing to get your hair wet if you’re going to wash someone’s hair, hair being a symbol for the mind and its thoughts, and it’s not Moshehiem’s hair I’m talking about; it’s ours. The young Jewish man in King’s Cafeteria went through a bout with the idea he was the Jewish Messiah, too. Then there was Lars with the idea he was Islam’s Madhi, mentioned in the Tongues Jerusalem story, and I with the idea I was the Antichrist of Christianity would you believe it. You’d wonder what is going on with us, with so many of us, having such symbols and tattoos in the being. While it is a form of megalomania, it doesn’t come about because we are just egomaniacs. With the young Jewish man it’s easy to see how he got the idea in his head: he was raised to believe he was, who he was told he was during ego transcription. With the rest of us it’s not so clearly spelled out, but it comes about in the same way: our parents and/or primary caretakers, or only one very intensely, adores us, worships us really, when we are infants and toddlers, and we are their little Buddha, Jesus, Krishna, Mohammed, Moses, or whomever. Even if you are never called these things, the devotional energy given to you, the importance you are shown to have by your parental devotees, and I’m not talking about simply adoring your child but putting this emphasis on them all out of proportion to their place in the world, which even for a prince or princess is nothing compared with the size of the world, is something pathological and causes complexes like a messiah complex, which the child, at some point in their adult life, manifests and puts it in the terms of their religion.

Good God why did I have an antichrist complex? In addition to being my mother’s little Jesus, I was her little lover, her relationship to my penis and the whole nine yards captured well by a line of muse poetry, from the inner voice, that came to illustrate the above point:“a combination of suck it serve it, have Sermon on the Mount with it.” In such a taboo relationship, so hedonistically Oedipal, you wouldn’t imagine I’d grow up and believe I was the Messiah would you?

The antichrist thought had never even entered my head until I dropped acid for the first time, was not anything I would’ve identified myself with, was not anything I even remotely wanted to be. I had wanted to be a prophet when I was a teenage Jesus freak, like I wanted to be a Green Beret and astronaut when I was a little kid. Although my self-importance had always been barn big, as a result of being worshiped by my mom, I’d not thought myself any kind of divine specialness, good or bad. That it was not only a bad specialness but the worst you could be, in my cultural/religious context anyway, when such an insane thought did hit me, resulted of course from my sexual relationship with my mom from birth until I was four. Other bad things resulted from that too, as well as things that never would’ve happened if that hadn’t, incredibly good things, like being wide and open enough to encounter the behinds and in-betweens of reality. Do we only cuss Eve for eating the apple, simply despise Pandora for opening that box?

Radical consciousness,
it proved things through inner experience.
It's hard on time.
It's all we can do to stay awake.
It's all we can do to be alive.
It's all we can do to stay alive,
if we've confronted the Antichrist,
if we've confronted his paper.

You're caught up in pegging people evil.
I don't think you can see yourself
if you've confronted the Way.
No finger wagging at me
if you've confronted it honestly.
Can you turn the pump off,
wash the live yard?
I think everybody is up in arms over everything.
Hit over the head with morality,
even the undefined spiritual path.

The workings of the spiritual path
what I'm showing you,
what I'm here to find out,
specifically the spiritual divide in that,
where racism starts,
the spiritual process in that.

You are really you.
The Messiah,
I'm poundin' on your door.
I think this is where humanity springs.
I think this is every one of us,
whoever we find Messiah.
It's our larger self
comin' down the pikes through time.
I'm a seer to help us get there.
That's my public face.
I'm not about to ditch you in the ditch.
I'm serious about this stuff.
Listen to me speak.

Can this doctrine go the distance?
[dramatic music from the U2 song "Drowning Man" heard here]
It's reaching out for you now.
In the future
it will be the doctrine of our self.
It will be where we carry our bank card.
Heaven
won't necessarily find us this order.
It's a handle from the creators of this universe,
a supramental handle.

Oh my gosh,
you've changed the face of God.
Brushed with death
to get this across to you.
The Gods in their starry heaven
have to be surpassed.
The universe is so small, you know?

You were born in your south.
It's where we all march on to improve.
It's what I'm about here.
It's what I'm doing with you.
I'm making you lunch.
There, another chapter.

The image of the werewolf,
I'm not about that spirit.
I've had to overcome it to be on this page.
I've had to overcome it to get here.
And we need this overcome in man.
How easily you'll assign to me the worst evil possible,
but I'm giving you joy.
And here it is on your page.
Good evening.

Next post:

Chapter 4
A Living Incense Link

Between Jerusalem I’m Sorry, Chapter 2

A tactical nuclear device in an army rucksack, what our captain carried, the commander of our special forces Green Light Team. I was a light weapons sergeant pulling security for the team. (image source unknown)

Questions by the Moon

Are the Gods real? I’m talking about basically all of them, the present ones and the ancient ones whose names have come to us from this culture or that. This dawned on me as I was studying Greek Mythology in university and preparing a paper that argued Dionysus represented an intention to replace Zeus as the king of the Gods, but that intention failed, what drove Dionysus insane, arguing that this represented psychological events that took place in Greek culture, under the strong impression that the Gods were figures of human psychology, not yet ready to admit the Greek Gods were real unto themselves. Then I came across a copy of Dionysus Myth and Cult by Walter F. Otto, an author that felt they were actually real, or at least that’s how my Greek professor described him, and whether that was the actual case or not, it’s what stuck with me. It made perfect sense—of course I reasoned, Them too. My realization came from the experience I alluded to at the close of the last chapter, when I saw where the religions of humanity come from.

Up until that moment I only applied reality to the religions alive today, not the old ones. Of course there’d be a lot of interpretation, or imagination, applied to the reality of whatever religion, old or young, something the adherents of today’s religions don’t seem to apprehend, what becomes more apparent as a religion goes out of style as it were, but nonetheless the basis of the religion is real, speaking here of those that have come from inner revelation, from prophets and seers, not the invented ones, those that have been made up entirely by the human ego without input from the inner consciousness. Incidentally, in the study of religion today, on the part of science and academia that is, that religion has its origin from the inner consciousness, and not from environmental or social factors, isn’t even recognized, or if it is, isn’t yet admitted. That would be putting the emphasis on consciousness itself, what science yet avoids, it in the mainstream being dominated by reductionist materialism. I’m sorry; I can’t avoid the mouthfuls.

First, consider that there are regions of mind above ours, or our usual haunt of mind, and in an inner experience that was triggered by LSD (bear with me), I encountered above our field of mind what at that time I described as a thought grid that stretched to infinity in every direction, and inside the grid were squarish cubicles, what I’d come to call houses, but which are called the Heavens by most mystics down through the ages, which when you looked down into them housed in miniature fantastic forms of divine and not worldly origin. I was flying over that grid and only saw into the Buddhist and Christian heavens, as they were side by side, but I understood that this thought grid acted as a filter for the divine light from beyond, sending to our minds the seeds that not only create our religions but also make human civilization. You have to understand that in that height of Mind, your understanding is basically infinite and capable of realizing multiple ideas at the same time. These ideas were just present in my mind, not thought out, as I will explain.

With a remote possibility called the divine experience, you see that the many ideas of God are actually beings unto themselves when you get right up close to them, beings that to look upon is to see something our three dimensions can’t quite capture, beings that to look upon is to bring the upmost feelings of awe and reverence. In the line our language draws, I can’t speak of this at the same time as that, but not only our religions come from that thought grid, those innumerable heavens, but the ideas that are civilizing us to become more than the animal, ideas as mundane as the lowly spoon and sewing machine needle, as important as agriculture and mathematics, and I can go on and on and on, the seeding usually coming in our dreams but also in the visions of seers or prophets. That this place seeds civilization, is where ours comes from, was not something that occurred to me after in interpreting the experience; as I’ve said, that knowledge was consummate with being there and seeing that level of Mind, what I knew as I looked out on that divine region, not with the vehicle of worded thought but with a silent knowing that held that knowledge in its gaze.

I can go on about what I’ve since learned about that region from someone else who’s gone there, whose poem I referenced above, someone who can tell you a whole lot more about it than can I, someone there with me in Safed but not someone I realized was, a mind blowing synchronicity during the hunger strike involving a book of his notwithstanding, since I only had that book in my hands, The Life Divine, not his physical presence, though they were almost constant hands on that book, but it would be sufficient here only to explain that there on that height the religious ideals are in a perfect harmony with one another, do not clash, are opposites complementary to each other, but, and here’s the tricky part, upon entering the human mind and heart, they undergo what might be called a sea change, infinity as it is meeting the finite, which makes them very creative ideas as apt to go this way as that, meaning open to a variety of interpretations, and if that isn’t enough, they are filtered to us by individuals, prophets, seers, sages and the like, and the container damages the goods, whomever that container might be, even Mohammad, peace by upon him, and you can crown the whole problem with divine revelation with the fact that here on material earth the ideals each seem to want the world to themselves, I mean the whole wide world. If you are open to their height, and open to more than just one house, you hear their competition, a very friendly jousting, like with your other half that in the ears of most seers turns into an exclusivity.

Our story is wound by stories, and back stories spin off of it like lightning, and if we don’t tell our story in a straight line from the beginning to the end, not digressing with back stories, or not much, choosing instead to tell the original story by telling also the many stories that spin off of it, the story can get lost, but if you can just remain seated, or, to say it differently, ‘don’t touch that dial!’, in this here book I’ll give you a story wound round like no other, weave different stories into the narrative the way the universe spins stories, or how water drains from a sink, to give a more common picture of what I’m talking about: a spiral fashion, which means you first get a glimpse and then bigger and bigger looks until the damn thing’s in a whole picture of sight, and all the stories have come together as the one story.

So I would venture to digress here and say that I believe Nietzsche did not lose his mind from syphilis but from being such a hardcore atheist and then having a divine experience, as he had the intellectual passion to break the lid over the intellect separating us from infinity but not the flexibility to assimilate such a crash upon his atheism when that lid broke from so many repeated assaults on it. However much he was predisposed to mental illness from whatever, I believe such a catastrophic assault on his core beliefs triggered his insanity. I say that because, in the aftermath of such an impact upon my beliefs, I almost lost my mind, as I had been an atheist too, though one fervently asking the question is there a God, and I was no longer looking at books and arguments of reason; I was looking on the inside, and at that moment I was an open book. My set and setting for that LSD trip, one I had planned for months so to ask the question of the existence of God, were maxed out. I had no a priori, I mean, I hadn’t made up my mind that God does or doesn’t exist, and I was not out to prove either of those, like science does in the question of the origin of consciousness—it seems to be only trying to prove it arises from material process, from the physical brain. It was my openness to an affirmative answer that saved me, although I in no way expected the answer I got.

For weeks after the divine experience, long after the effects of the substance wore off, I was still tripping. Something had happened to the definite separation between my inside and outside, called a spiritual emergency in today’s parlance, and I could not look at any media whatsoever, even a newspaper or magazine, without it being synchronic with what I’d just been thinking, and with that and the pounding explanation point in my mind that there really are God-beings involved in humanity, involved in our very minds, beings so much beyond us it wasn’t even funny, it was all I could do to get a job washing dishes and vowing never to have anything more than the most shallow and mundane of thoughts ever again. It was a scary time.

I guess it was 6 or 8 weeks after the experience that I met a young Jewish man that helped me, inadvertently, to face my fear and move on, but it was a long journey to where I faced my fear. First, I’d traveled in terror from Spyrock Mountain in Northern California, where the experience occurred, to a VA hospital in Sacramento where I almost died, from terror I kid you not. The exclamation point went from my mind to my stomach, thankfully, as it saved my reason, but an excruciating and hellish pain in my solar plexus was the price I had to pay, and I could not stop vomiting and diarrhea. After several days, I was told by the doctor assigned to me that I was about to die, and there was nothing they could do, and my parents had been informed and were on their way from Texas. He admitted they had thought I was a heroin addict going through withdrawal, why I hadn’t been given pain meds—the jerks—but after having all my fluids tested they saw that wasn’t the case. He said he did not know what the case was, what was wrong with me. He then apologized for the missed diagnosis, and left. Hopelessness and despondency hit me over the head, and that’s an understatement, but help was coming, immediate help.

It was a common ward, and I had been there a week, moaning and thrashing my body constantly from the pain, vomiting and whatnot. When the doctor left one of the patients came and sat next to my bed. He said his name was Jim, and he told me the other men were talking about having me tied to the bed I was such a disturbance. Then he asked, like he knew I’d experienced something really, really, heavy, “Man what happened to you?”

I told him about the acid trip on Spyrock, my first, which was on my 27th birthday by the way, and how I’d been an atheist but now knew there was a God because I had seen divine form. As I was saying the word God, he was taking my hand so to pray for me. The moment our hands touched the pain, the vomiting, all the symptoms of my mysterious illness, disappeared completely, and I was healed. The sudden relief flooded me with peace. He was as surprised as I was.

After one of those long moments where two people sit silent and stunned, staring at the unknown because they’ve had something happen to them, together, akin to seeing aliens or something, not just a flying saucer, Jim began to speak about himself, telling me he’d had some really weird experiences too, why he knew something heavy had happened to me. He said he had a large house, and young men stayed with him, as he was a sort of teacher, not a guru or anything, but a friend. He invited me to stay at his house after I got out of the hospital.

And so there I went, after spending some time with my mom and step-dad, who were of course relieved that they hadn’t come to see me die. I was no longer terrified as I had been before going to the hospital, but I was still in that place of the mixing of the inside and outside, and very close to fear, as it was a very uncomfortable place. Arriving at Jim’s, he greeted me kindly and helped me unload my things and put them into the room I’d be staying in. I had a shotgun under the seat I took out and carried to the room last. He widened his eyes at it but didn’t say anything. Then, Jim busy elsewhere, I sat down on a sofa in the living room, which was lined all the way around with sofas and chairs, except the wall the TV was up against. It was on, and the game show Wheel of Fortune was on. A few other young men, some younger, some older than I, were sitting around the room. A young man came in through the front door, and Jim met him just inside it and began speaking to him. The man was visibly upset, and I heard him tell Jim that the FBI was after him, something about terrorist activities, and Jim said, in a loud voice, “Don’t drag me into it!” At that exact moment, the sentence puzzle on the wheel in the game show was solved, something Jim had not been a witness to, what was on the TV, and it was ‘don’t drag me into it’, which was said in a loud voice by the players and audience, said also by Jim at the same time if you’re following me. Everybody in the room said a big, “Whoa!” I jumped up and ran out the door, Jim close on my heels trying to calm me down. I went back and forth into the house a couple of times to get my things and put them back in my truck, a black, king cab Nissan truck, Jim trying his best to get me to stay and just talk. I left him standing there and drove off like a bat out of hell. Funny, I left the shotgun behind by accident.

After a week’s stay with my step-dad’s niece and her husband, as I had to get my truck fixed, a week seemingly underwater with the fearful state I was in, using the song “Drowning Man” by U2 to help me not drown, and R.E.M.’s “You Are the Everything” to comfort me, what I listened to over and over, I made my way to Seattle, where, after working a couple of weeks on a building demolition crew made up of convicts from the local prison, a job I took because it was the only job available, and I had to have a job to stay at the Y.M.C.A., I got a job, like I said, as a dishwasher, and it was at a factory cafeteria that made monitors for infants in the womb, and when you walked through the factory, you heard the sound of unborn babies breathing all around you. How that helped to calm the exclamation point in my mind. It was on the way to becoming a regular period.

That was triggered one evening after work. I was driving past King’s Cafeteria I remember, when one of those strange insistent feelings hit me that had been coming up for weeks now, one in that instance that, not in actual words but as a strong impulse, told me to stop there and eat. One, I wasn’t hungry, had just ate at my job, and two, I was quite tired of cafeteria food, but this time I just went with it, and I pulled in and parked. I ate a little something and then lit my pipe and leaned back to smoke it (this was in 1988), when another insistent mental impulse hit me, one that had with it a story that had just appeared in my mind, one about the man sitting across the room from me, how he was in trouble and needed help because he thought he was the Messiah, and I needed to talk him down. It wasn’t anything I heard in words; it was just an understanding that I had when I looked on the man. Naturally I fought with myself awhile, not wanting to be rude and intrusive, as the boundaries between us, in the West that is, when we are at a restaurant (anywhere public) are something like international borders we are so private and unto ourselves and our own party while eating. I imagined myself walking up to him. “Excuse me, but I couldn’t help but notice you think you’re the Messiah…” It was ridiculous, and I wouldn’t do it, of course not.

I did do it. With a great deal of reluctance, I got up and walked over to him. It was obvious something was bothering him, since he was sort of rocking back and forth putting his head in his hands and then taking them off. “Excuse me, but it looks like something’s bothering you. Can I help?”

“Eh?! What?” he said looking up at me sharply. “No, nothing. Leave me alone!”

I began to walk off, feeling like such a fool, when he called me back. “Yes, there is something really bothering me…” I sat down on the other side of the two-top, and he began by describing how he was using his charisma, which he felt was a magical power, to manipulate women who were his followers, sexually manipulate them, and how badly he felt about that. Okay, I thought, he does need someone to talk to. Then he talked about his childhood, how he’d been raised in a small Jewish sect, raised as the Jewish Messiah, and now he felt he was going insane because he didn’t want to be that but felt he couldn’t help but do his destiny, if it really were his destiny and was not just some seed his sect had sown. He was basically torn in two. Was he or wasn’t he? At any rate, as a child he’d learned metaphysical techniques to have power over people, or so he claimed, and now it was all crashing down on his head, having all these women worshipping him, and he just using them for sex, and then there was this idea in his head that he was the messiah. It was all too much.

Tell me about it. Even though I ‘knew’ that before I went over to him, it still came as quite a surprise you might imagine. I grabbed onto some boards on the bottom of the table like I was holding onto the world itself, the real world, the one of reason and natural laws, it threatening to leave me in the strangest of places. I gathered myself and told him the story of what had brought me there, the insistent mental urge, how I knew what was bothering him and how he had to believe me because he would go insane if he didn’t. I told him that something cared about him very much to bring me there to help him, and that something was God, not bothering with any distinctions with that word at the moment, obviously. I went on to explain something I’d learned from my divine experience. We weren’t waiting for a messiah, neither the Jews nor anyone else, because we each and every one of us were ourselves the Messiah, and it was that that was coming, was what we were waiting for, not a messiah but that fundamental, global change in humanity itself.

I urged him to leave the group he was living with, just strike out on his own and away from being a messiah, away from being a lord over his band of young women. I didn’t ask for any details about that, didn’t want to know the dirt and did not have a moral reaction over what details he did give me, which were very few. If I had had one, there would have been no way I could help him, and consequently, the young women he was sexually manipulating, although at that moment he and not they was foremost in my mind to help. He was the one in front of me. I do believe it’s going to take us centuries, judging by the all-encompassing and absolute importance we give to the victim today, which leaves no room for daylight to come in and confound our moral reaction with the truth of us, to give as much importance to the victimizer as we give the victim, the kind of importance that wants to help and heal, what we readily give to victims, but until we give that also to victimizers, there will always be victims. You can kind of see where you are with that by watching what you do when you are confronted with someone, on the net or wherever, that has committed sexual sins. You’ll see why I say it’s going take so very long. You’ll want to know every bite and scratch, every name he chewed on. You won’t want to know his origin or even his heart.

The conversation took just several minutes, but by the end he had calmed down, was all ears as a matter of fact, as he felt the magic that had brought me there to help him. We left without even giving one another our names, but it was a meeting that had more of an impact upon our lives than most of the ones where names are exchanged, as it wasn’t each other’s names we came away with; it was the comforting but intense impact of getting each what we needed by a higher power. I have no way of knowing if he took my advice or not, but, by the divine arrangement of the encounter, the magic, I know that it came just at the very moment he needed it most, where he was predisposed to listen, if he were going to listen, and so that’s all I needed to know. The rest was in God’s hands.

For my part, I saw how our hand is held, and that, far from being a pathological state I just needed to end, this blurring of the line between my inside and outside, which made the world too deep to live in, or so it felt such meaning lined the world’s page, was in fact a blessing in disguise, one I could get used to and live with, and here I’d seen how much it could help, how hurt had nothing to do with it, and the exclamation point calmed into a regular sentence ending.

I left Seattle not too long after that, but not before getting a better job, as a waiter at T.G.I. Fridays, and a one bedroom apartment, landing on my feet after arriving there dead broke, a skill that I would hone down to a science in the coming years vagabonding. I just suddenly left it all, another skill I would hone as a perpetual traveler, and drove back to my hometown of Houston, intending to go for it, I mean get as much knowledge as I could of the deepest things possible, and to do that I didn’t decide to become a monk, minister, priest, or whatnot, but went back to university for an advanced degree, still under the mistaken impression that you could get real knowledge in a university, the kind that helps you translate the world’s deeps. You’d think I’d study religion or philosophy, but I decided upon doing graduate work in the History of Science, specifically on the origin of atomic theory in Greek science, wanting to argue that it didn’t come from empirical observation but from inner experience. I also went to the university of the inner life, as I’ve mentioned a couple of times, and to attend that school I organized my life to do inner exploration along with the outer study, go as deeply as I could go, wanting to see how far up, down, and to the sides we go on the inside. Has the thought ever entered your mind to do that? You’d think it’d be at the top of our bucket list, I mean, if we want to really know ourselves.

It so happened that, early on, I conjured a demon, another story wound round this present one I will only mention now, fill in later, but suffice it to say it was a rather Faustian episode, although I didn’t exchange my soul for knowledge, was just ardently pursuing esoteric knowledge. I got the daylights scared out of me yet again, this time looking dead in the eyes of a demon, got knowledge I could not get rid of nor knew of anyone that had such face to face knowledge that could help me assimilate it, and so I took the advice of my Greek professor, who became basically my confessor for those three years, and I just focused on learning to translate Attic and Homeric Greek, for purposes of grounding, dropping the science thesis but picking up, as self-study, the investigation of the origin and transcription of the human ego, as I’ve said.

I was interested in the origin of atomic theory because of the brush I had with a tactical nuke as a Green Beret, when an A team I was temporarily a part of, one that specialized in hand-placed nuclear weapons, parachuted into West Germany with one, a real nuke. To make sure it was just a practice mission, as we’d spent two weeks in isolation in England beforehand, where a little doubt did crept in if it were real world or not, we checked as soon as we hit the ground if it had plutonium, or the regular nuke team members did I should clarify, who were from Operational Detachment Alpha 334. It wasn’t armed. I and three others from my own A team, 331, C company, 3rd Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group, from Ft. Devens, Massachusetts, were pulling security for the mission and had been told not to even look at the thing. It looked like a keg of beer.

At that time down to a man we’d said we’d go through with it if it had been real world, even though it was certain we’d been lied to about the fallout, and we’d die too. Upon more honest reflection after the mission, however, I was not such an unquestioning patriot, and I realized the enormity of the consequences of the mission if it had been real world, as this was 1983, during final stages of the Cold War. Although you can pass it off as just a training mission, and most Green Berets would probably laugh at the effect it had on me, it amplified my thinking, and strangely the world began to loom larger in my mind than my nation, which clashed greatly with my redneck Texan outlook on things, and I got out of the army when my time was up and started college with some big questions I wanted answered. I had no idea at the time, like I said, that those questions university can’t answer. Inner exploration, the exploration of your consciousness, however, can.

I see you! [said in the voice of a common dialogue plugin on YouTube]
Gather your nations.
Is there anything that brings us together?
I’ll never answer it
if I can’t say, shazam!
You know what I’m talking about,
just utterly blowin’ your mind.
Now tell me again you have religious experience.
We gather in the unknown.
We come together on ourselves
faced with a larger us.
Shazam!

God dog do you have details.
I don’t think I’ve ever touched anything like this before.
I’m scared of you.
He’s innocent
of anything hairy scary.
He’s just livin’ life at a level you ain’t,
and he apologizes to your ears.
My main hiding places your river,
my main heartbeat your mood, [this and above line heard sung]
but this kept going.

Radical yoga
mystical borders,
that’s the ocean spray.
On chewing that list:
available here
sundials.
I have a good question:
where is the sun on our map?
You’re in representative mind,
you and the Gods too.
The sun is Supermind,
what’s manifesting this show.
You get a map
that shows off the map,
just wait and you’ll see.
How long it took
it took it over
an impossibility with me.
In the meantime I was just in the zoo
looking for all of the particulars
a novelist
rocky mountain.

Next post:

Chapter 3
The Fruit Fly and the Blessing