Sunday, June 2, 1996, Westwood Masonic Lodge, at 2242 Westwood Blvd. (1 - 3 PM PDT)
by Corey Donovan
[Kylie, Talia, Zaia, Carola, Ellis and Grant were on hand.]
This was a new meeting place for us. Castaneda entered from the back parking area and commented, "There’s air here." He contrasted it from a previous temporary place we had tried, that "has this little thing [meaning the fan] turning, to make you think that there is air conditioning, but nothing is happening." He continued, "It’s only someone’s hot breath on you, but you imagine that you’re cooler."
He asked us, "What is going to be the agenda today? What questions do you have?" Daniel Lawton asked the only question, about inner silence: "Does it just come, or do we have to force it?" Dan explained that he often finds he has to force it. Castaneda responded immediately, "You force it!" It does not just come. "They [the Flyers] don’t go away just because I’m here!"
This reminded him of Prince Charles. Castaneda told us "Prince Charles is a dog," but that the British (and Americans too) always act like it is supposed to be so wonderful that he is "just there," that he is simply present, because he is the Prince. Castaneda claimed that he himself used to be that way. He would tell don Juan, "Hey, I drove 800 miles. I’m here!" Don Juan would respond sarcastically, "Oh, the Prince has arrived. Infinity will open up now!" Castaneda would go on about having driven for so long in the hot sun to get there, as though that were enough.
The "Prince Charles is a dog" statement led Castaneda to tell us about pets again, and how we treat them just like the Flyers treat us. He told us that he had once looked into the history of dogs and was fascinated by the fact that the Danes learned to train dogs with different kinds of whistles. They would train "a barge full of Great Danes" to respond to a particular whistle, so that as soon as they got to shore and the whistle sounded, the dogs would race ahead to chew up their victims. The Vikings would then just come in to finish the job. Castaneda found this fascinating.
"Who actually turned dogs into pets?" he asked. "Well, maybe the French." [This, of course, got a big laugh, in view of Castaneda’s ongoing, joking disdain for the French.]
Castaneda mentioned Heidegger, "this exquisite thinker, the top thinker of his day," who, when Hitler came to power, "grew a little mustache and put on the brown shirt," with his hand inside his shirt like Napoleon. "He looked just like a Hitler double. How did this happen?" Heidegger was the one who had talked about "being in the world."
Castaneda remembered how rigid he had been, and how we all tend to be like that. We "don’t want to be inconvenienced"; we "don’t want to learn a new version of anything" we have learned before. Castaneda claimed that he would willingly learn endless new procedures from don Juan, but that if don Juan wanted to correct him, or stated something that Castaneda found inconsistent with what he had previously told him, Castaneda would "just go nuts."
Castaneda revealed that it was really a woman [probably Thurney] who had been correcting him lately, telling him that what he was saying was inconsistent with something in one of the books. He told us she would tell him, for example, that he should shout intent three times. He was the one who wrote that, and she keeps quoting him back to him! But he used to similarly get upset about don Juan’s "inconsistencies." Don Juan was "horribly inconsistent," and Castaneda used to keep "mounds of notes, piled up in my room . . . so many that you could not walk through," on what don Juan had said. Don Juan would say something and Castaneda would insist, "You’re contradicting yourself, you said something different before." Don Juan would ask him, "When?" Castaneda would respond, "Oh, a year ago." Don Juan would brush it off, saying, "Well, that was a different man a year ago."
Castaneda told us that he was "working like crazy" to "open something up," to show us that we do not yet have the silence. But is that by itself going to create the silence? "Just that, and the Flyers are going to let go? No."
In Castaneda’s view, "man is being exterminated." Which "just shows the Flyers?stupidity." Don Juan thought the Flyers were "as stupid as people who run a hen house": "They do not really care for the well-being of the chickens or the humans that much, they just raise them and eat them." He claimed that the Flyers tend to make everyone "morose" and "depressive." He imitated someone speaking with this sort of Flyer-induced affect [basically a monotone].
Castaneda then argued, "The only thing humans do well is war. We are basically warriors. But that does not mean we all have to be soldiers. We don’t all have to say, ‘Heil Hitler.?What was that, that an entire country was saying, ‘Heil Hitler??To one man? What craziness!"
Castaneda repeated his question to don Juan about how the Flyers eat our awareness: "But how do they eat us, don Juan?" Don Juan had responded, "With their fat, flat tongues." In other words, how would he know? Castaneda explained that all sorcerers can "see" with respect to this question is "the maneuver and the result."
Castaneda took "reams of notes" on his sessions with don Juan. Don Juan obliged him by giving him all of these "procedures," many of which he was just making up on the spot. Old Florinda once took Castaneda aside and told him, "Don’t fall for it, he’s making a lot of stuff up." Castaneda indignantly responded, "What do you mean?" He discounted a lot of what Old Florinda told him, because "you’re not the Nagual." But she was right. Don Juan was having "endless fun" with him, just like the Nagual Julian had had endless fun with don Juan.
Castaneda described don Juan as "a big guy" -- "like Ralph" -- whereas the Nagual Julian was "a little guy, tubercular, with little feet, kind of short, very handsome, almost effeminate, but not really." Castaneda indicated that Julian endlessly teased don Juan because he was "so heavy, so fixed." And Castaneda was "the same way," so don Juan had to do it to him.
Castaneda imitated don Juan instructing him as follows: "There are ‘Old Sorcerers?and ‘New Sorcerers.?Let’s start with the Old Sorcerers. They were dark, they were obsessed with sex." At this, Castaneda would respond, "Really?" Don Juan continued, "Yes. They thought nothing of bestiality." At this, Castaneda claimed, the side of Castaneda’s cheek would start twitching. Don Juan continued, "Yes, they had these practices that would shock you! We should start with something simple, because some of them are too much and you would have to go home, back to UCLA, to recover. Let’s talk about a couple of the Old Sorcerers? masturbation practices." Castaneda would be twitching heavily at this point, "Masturbation, what?" Don Juan would respond, "No, not just simple ‘beating your meat.?Anybody can do that." Castaneda then told us, jokingly, that sometime he intended to bring in for us his notes on sorcerers?masturbation techniques. Anyway, Castaneda’s point was that by the time he wrote his books, he already knew better than to simply record all of these procedures don Juan had come up with when he was "just pulling his leg." Castaneda reminded us that, "There is nothing worse than giving concrete procedures to a bored fuck," because they will follow them slavishly and "go nuts" about them.
Castaneda explained again, as he had the previous week, that women have a "bar" that runs through their energy bodies, and that nearly all women have a five- or six-inch section missing. Castaneda told us he had seen "thousands of women," and "it is true in Spain, Italy, England and the United States. Why is it so amazingly consistent?" Don Juan used to ask him, "Don’t you wonder why it is always so consistent?" And it is always broken at the same point. If the bar goes all the way through the luminous egg, it looks like it is actually sticking out "an inch-and-a-half or two," because of the reflection of the luminosity.
With men, Castaneda again explained, the sexual "bar" is much more convoluted: it makes a V-shape and comes up to a "swan’s beak" shape at the end. It is also broken, but the break, or breaks, can be anywhere. He has seen men who "do not have the bottom of the ‘V,?quot; so "there is nothing to go down." We need this link for "dreaming," he explained. Because the chunk is missing in women, "they can’t dream." Castaneda explained that he cannot talk about this in public workshops. People ask him why he has not written about it, but, "What can I say?" he asked rhetorically.
Castaneda mimicked someone asking him, "Well, what are your credentials? Do you have any degrees? What are your sociology credentials?" He told us, "I don’t have any; I am just telling you what the sorcerers say about sex." He mimicked someone responding, "Oh, I can give up sex. I don’t have any problem giving up sex." Castaneda’s response is, "Of course you don’t -- you never had it!" because these pieces are missing.
In men, Castaneda claimed that these missing pieces explain "why men have such indifference" and "why they hate women." This goes way back, Castaneda argued. "Socrates hated women," calling them "lame men." Castaneda told us that people respond, "Oh, he was gay." But Castaneda countered, "You can be as gay as you want and still like women. This doesn’t have anything to do with his being gay."
Castaneda repeated that don Juan used to say "terrible things to me," like the way he used to ask him "What’s it like having a carrot in your butt?" and telling him it was a good thing "they haven’t attached the handle yet." Castaneda would object, telling don Juan he was "so scatological," and admonishing him that he was "such a smart man, couldn’t he think of another metaphor?" Don Juan would respond, "Well, I just see a carrot in your butt." This drove Castaneda crazy for a long time, but after awhile, he told us, it did not have an impact anymore, and he was "just able to hear whatever horrible thing don Juan said without reacting." He told us that we were getting to be like that. He claimed that he can now say horrible things to us that he cannot say in a workshop setting. He attributed this to the fact that "you know there is no going back."
Castaneda told us that Carol was proposing, for the July Intensive workshop, that they provide some concrete procedures [for achieving silence]. Don Juan, however, according to Castaneda, had indicated that it is possible for people to just "go directly there, without all kinds of ritual." Carol’s argument was, "Well, if putting on a few feathers and doing the dance helps lead them there," then, with the mass, it might actually be sufficient somehow.
Castaneda called Carol "the idea man," and told us that he had had an encounter with "an idea man" in his youth. He related that he used to be a sculptor, and that when he returned from Italy [where he claimed he had studied art] he had to get a job. Someone directed him to this idea man. The guy told him his idea was, "‘Gorgo: You cut off his tail, but it keeps growing back!?quot; The man explained to Castaneda, "You can’t stop it [the tail]. So do it!"
Castaneda responded, "That’s your idea?" The man said, "Yeah." Castaneda asked him how he was supposed to do it, and the guy told him, "That’s your job." So Castaneda was "completely mystified." He asked the guy, "How much does this pay?" The man responded, "Twenty bucks." So Castaneda "told him to get lost." He could not see himself "breaking his brain for twenty bucks," when the guy himself had "no concept for it other than just a wacky idea."
"So the Witches want to do this" [give us procedures]. Castaneda claimed, "Carol comes up with the ideas and I order the structure." But he told us that "she got me" with the idea that the mass might add something to the procedures.
As far as movements, we first did two warm ups: right hand over left and scrunching the shoulders forward; and then the "stomach scrunches," using the stomach muscles while leaning over to one’s side. Then there was a doorknob-grabbing motion toward the front, snapping the hand from an outward grabbing position into a fist. Then another that was like pulling a curtain across in front of the body. There was a final movement where you bend the elbows and pull the hand, with thumb tucked in, quickly across the front, and sweep it around to the back with a jerk. Castaneda emphasized using our stomachs in these grabbing movements.
We also did three "toss outs" with the hands: one high, one in the middle and one low (at waist) level. Then we did "slap downs," starting with the arms up and relaxed at the side and slapping down flat at about rib cage level. When we were practicing this one, Castaneda suggested that we think of someone, "a public figure of some kind," whom we would "like to spank." He offered, "I can’t say Reagan anymore . . . Bush? Clinton?" Castaneda did not reveal whom he was thinking of.
Then Castaneda had Kylie show us the three "thrust forward" movements we had learned before. During this time, Castaneda left for awhile, but eventually he came back with Carola and Zaia.
Castaneda told us that "Carol had wanted to come" that day, but "she couldn’t." Later on he explained that the Blue Scout had not been feeling well, so Carol was looking after her. Castaneda said that it "really gets to me," since these are both powerful, independent women. "They both could leave anytime on their own," Castaneda explained, claiming that, "the Blue Scout could go incredibly far, unimaginably out there," and that "Carol too can go where she wants. They are both so strong." But when the Blue Scout is not well, Castaneda explained, she asks for, "Mommy, Mommy." When "she’s feeling well," on the other hand, she will say things to Carol like, ‘Why do you have such a fat ass? That’s disgusting! You’re too fat.?quot; But the "little girl" [the Blue Scout] and "the big girl" [Carol] are "just amazing." He told us that he had watched Carol "fussing over" the Blue Scout, wiping her face, and that because they are each so strong, independent and capable, "this kind of tenderness" between them just broke him up.
When Carola arrived, Castaneda called her "Chinito Joaquin." He promised us that when she did the long forms with Kylie, that we would see them "not quite cross phylums," but that she does her part "just like a little Chinese boy." That was why he was now calling her Joaquin.
Castaneda then had Kylie announce the long forms: "Man Breaks Neck" and "Tiger Breaks Back." Kylie and Carola performed each of them once. [We had learned the first part of Man Breaks Neck two weeks previously, but Tiger Breaks Back was new, and included a lot of growling and breathing.] Then he had them perform both forms again to show us in each the particular points at which the neck and the back are "broken."
Talia, Kylie and others distributed to each of us one of the leather paperweights they had created, inspired by a paperweight that the Blue Scout had found that they had agreed was "the perfect weight and nature to induce silence." He promised that, if we treated them "as power objects," and "keep them in their plastic domes" [the plastic packaging they came in], they will develop "a sheen" from us.
Castaneda instructed us to put them on our stomachs, "either above or below the bellybutton, or right on it." He said that we could either "lie down and just go to sleep," or use them "with the feet dangling over the bed and touching the floor." He repeated that it takes the least amount of time for Taisha to get to silence and "go off," and that it takes "a horribly long time" for Carol and himself. He joked about it taking "years and months." So he said we should work with them and "tell him about it" the following week.
Castaneda asked, "Do you still have the steel balls we gave you?" [These were the original versions of the "pressure point balls," stainless steel ball bearings that Castaneda decided were the right material for "modern man," and which were supposed to be the same size as man’s assemblage point. Eventually they evolved into the Teflon balls that Cleargreen sold and demonstrated at later workshops.] Castaneda told us there were some additional spots where we could place them that could "do things," but that he had to wait until we developed "a little more silence, maybe in a couple of weeks." Finally he told us to "bring them next week."
Castaneda told us that we had grown tired of "me, me, me." He claimed that we were now tired of "hearing other people do it" -- meaning that we were tired of listening to people talk about themselves, all the time waiting for an opportunity to jump in and talk about ourselves. "That doesn’t do it anymore" for us, he maintained. "So you are ready to move on."
Summary of passes taught:
- Elbows forward, wrists crossed, thrust shoulders forward
- Stomach crunches
1. "Rotating the doorknob" - open hand palm forward, twist out to fist.
2. "Pulling a curtain" - grabbing in and across in front
3. "Fluid elbow" - swing hand in front at hip level, snap back out and around.
Repeat of thrusts from week XXII:
4. Thrust palm up, grab, throw backward, drop, slap 10x, grab, hit fist, hit palm open up, hit palm open down.
5. Thrust forward, grab, throw back over, drop, scoop hand 3x, grab, swing across front, to side then forward, hit palm up, down.
6. Thrust forward, grab back, across, back to side, straight back, drop, scoop 5x, toss, hook, strike with back of wrist, hit palm up, down.
7. Three chops forward, down in "V"
8. Downward slaps starting with relaxed hand/wrist
9. Review of "Man Breaks Neck" and "Tiger Breaks Back":
Side to side
5x (start to left), left palm forward, step up, overhead hammer strikes 4x (r, l, r, l), left palm forward, double fist strikes 4x (r, l, r, l) parry r, parry l, hit, hit, strike claw, parry l, parry r, turn, step, strike fist left, kick right, strike fist right.