Sunday, December 22, 1996, at Dance Home in Santa Monica, 1 - 3 PM PDT
by Corey Donovan
[A couple of new Italians, in addition to Pio Barone, were on hand. Angelica also was on hand, as was François.]
"There's a heavy entity I discovered that's been hiding behind the evanescent, lighter entity. This heavy one is much more aware, much more intelligent than the light, thin one that is this female figure. It seems to have much greater awareness. I've been perceiving certain things because of what it puts out as it spins. Sorcery itself could be defined as perceiving the impacts of entities that disperse energy from places in our luminous egg where we can't get at it, to make it more available for us. That itself is a definition of sorcery.
"We're going to make a new T-shirt, 'Sorcery is about Impacts.' But we'll write it so you can look down and read it upside down, to remind yourself."
Castaneda had us take a position, tightening under the arms and bringing the hands together in front of the body at solar plexus level with the wrists nearly touching. "This is a very natural position. Don Juan was fascinated, he always saw this in religious paintings. We spent a lot of time in churches together. Don Juan liked churches because he said they were a good place to connive." In this position, you bring the right wrist over to rub along the inside of the left wrist about three times. Then with the right wrist, rub down, with the left arm held downward, starting about a hands width from the base of the palm. Castaneda was very particular, and showed us how the hand needed to be flat, rubbing downward 10 times. He told me to growl, and said, "This is delicious."
"The important thing [with this pass] is the left side. This is to prepare for an important meeting. If you've got a meeting with someone where you have to set them right, do this. It's an aggressive thing to do. You can do it on the right wrist too, for affection, if you're going to have a pleasant situation. You can do the right wrist if you're going to sit and do your memoirs." As we did it on the right side, he joked, "Don't do it too much or you'll fall in love with the person in the Radio Shack downstairs." As he was doing it, he said, "Oh, Ellis," as though he was falling in love with Ellis. "It's for sitting by the fire and playing footsie."
Castaneda joked, "Don Juan told me you can tell when someone's in bad shape, that something's controlling them, when, in the shower, their hands are like this," he acted like someone in the shower with their hands held right below shoulder level, with the hands hanging down at the wrists. "I laughed at don Juan and told him that was ridiculous. Then I noticed when I was in the shower, I caught myself doing it and I was horrified. I put them down, but then I was doing it again. I was really upset, and started lying down on my hands to stop that. So check that out in the shower to see if you're in bad shape.
"There was a woman who told me some years ago that what was missing in my books was anything about love. I didn't put that in because in the sorcerers' world, the kind of love in the way we usually think about it is irrelevant. What's important for sorcerers is affection. It's something that is deeply hidden in us, it's been covered over, and we have to pull it out. It's acting with abandon, not worrying about what the other person thinks about you or is going to do, just acting for the sheer hell of it. It's a way of calling back the energy body. It's one of those things that got shoved under when the energy body was pushed away from us. It's acting truly out of affection, not out of expectation. It's not about getting anything, and never knowing what the other person really thinks. That doesn't matter. And that pulls up something.
"This woman offered to teach me about love. This big woman--she had something in mind."
Castaneda gave us pressure points, telling us "The sorcerers believe that these few pressure points on the left hand and left wrist basically control most of the body, most of the systems, including the left side of the stomach where the energy center is. We're going to focus on that one for now. The right side, when we get to it, will let us add some refinements, some additional controls, but the left side controls most everything, like a remote control." There were five pressure points. On the first one, you hold a small ball (we had stainless steel ball bearings that he had given us previously) in the middle of the left palm and press with the fingers closing over it, especially the middle finger. "That creates a bump on the web between the thumb and the forefinger. On that bump you vibrate with the other ball on that spot, and then hold it there."
Quite a few people had not brought their balls. Castaneda commented, "Women give up their balls so easily to the men. Don't do it. Don't do it here. Let's be disciplined here if nowhere else. You can pork out outside of here, but be warriors here."
The second point was on the back of the hand. With the hand in a fist, it's a point in the middle of the back of the hand below the knuckles of the middle and fourth finger. It hurts a little bit. You're supposed to have your whole arm tensed up. You vibrate there and then hold it. The third pressure point is on the back of the wrist when you have your hand turned down, and it bends at the wrist. There's a little hollow area on the right side of that area. You rub there with the right hand cupped over the ball, for a count of 10.
The fourth point is on the inside of the wrist. With the hand bent down, there's a place where the tendon pops up. The fifth and final one is in the little depression to the right on the inside of the wrist from the channel that pops up. You rub there, holding the hand and arm as tight as possible.
"The left side controls basically everything here," he indicated the left side of the body. "The right side controls feelings." When we were working on the pressure points, Castaneda saw Pio and asked him who he was. "I've never seen you before." He didn't remember him from when Pio used to be part of the Sunday group. Pio told him his name and he said, "Oh, you're Pio Barone."
"I used to ask It, the Spirit, for information about my ex-agent. Only now, when I don't need it anymore, am I getting information about the guy. That's probably appropriate. Why did I need to know about it back then for? I didn't need to know what my agent was doing. What business was it of mine? I just need to be clean myself before It. I take what you tell me as far as what you're doing. I don't need to look to see what people are actually doing.
"Carl Sagan died of leukemia. They had him on life support and dialysis, all these extreme measures that people go to. Living in a wheelchair at age 62 is not living. God forbid, but that's what our medical system pushes us towards. The wife of this ex-agent, Ellis knew because she was friends with her mother. She was very good. She specifically laid out that she wasn't to be kept alive by extraordinary means. She wanted to be allowed to die with dignity. But my agent, when they asked him that, if he wanted to renege on his plan to die without extraordinary measures, did renege on it and wanted to be kept alive, even though he'd really become incompetent and senile. He spent his last years in a home just a few blocks away, this cheap home for the aged, imagining that he was in a Russian prison camp and that his father was going to rescue him any minute. One day as I was leaving class, I saw this guy on the street in his shorts and a nice shirt, very thin, waving, 'Hiiii' to the cars passing. It was my ex-agent saying goodbye to me, since I drove by at that point."
Castaneda showed us another pass where the right hand is held up, with the fingers pointing forward, at solar plexus level. The left hand pushes back and forth below it, also with the thumb locked and with exertion in each direction. You don't relax at all in this one. We were supposed to do 10 repetitions. You also do it above, and reverse hands, holding the left hand in the middle, as a barrier, and the right hand goes back and forth below and above. "Practice these on your own. Do them every day. You can use these."
The final pass was a "turning on." You hold your arms down at the sides and turn on by making the hands, palm down, come up as far as possible. Lock the wrists, the legs are straight, tighten the pectorals, and turn on, holding it for a count of 10.
"I once had lunch with the Italians at Versailles. There were about a dozen of them. I asked them what they did for a living, what kind of work. They said, 'What do you mean?' 'Well, what kind of work do you do?' 'I don't work.' Another one, likewise, and around the whole table, all twelve of these Italians said, 'We don't work. It wasn't in the books. You guys weren't working in the books, so we don't work.' Of course that wasn't in the books, but we work nonstop. We don't have time to waste, we're always working. The books are just a distillation--they're just an abstract summary of some of the principles. Here the Italians were trying to guide themselves, trying to be exactly like the books.
"The books were designed to be an abstract description of just the pertinent aspects of the belief system of sorcerers, not a description of how you're supposed to guide your life everyday.
"When the Flyers took us over, they taught man that you've got to fear God, you have to plead and beg for forgiveness, and have to look up to some big entity. The Flyers were especially strong in the middle ages, when everything was controlled by the Church. But even in more ancient times, there was that sort of system. Even today, Catholics and others are in the mode of supplicating, begging for things. Don Juan told us It doesn't operate that way. You command It. If you start begging It for something, especially if you beg It, 'Please don't let X happen,' then it will surely, X will happen. It will make it happen. So if there's anything you don't want to happen, don Juan would say 'Don't beg, don't say what you don't want to happen,' because It slams people who are in a supplicating mode like that.
"We're coming up with not-doings. Some of them will be clownish. You'll definitely be losing more dignity. You've lost a lot of dignity already. I saw Joe, this big kid, at Versailles. He wasn't the same kid [Joe was in his late 50s]. You have dropped a lot of stuff, but these not-doings, this clowning sort of mood will make you lose a lot more. The not-doings we're coming up with are reasonable not-doings. I'm a reasonable man. They're not extreme, like walking around with a tomato between your legs, or some of the other bizarre things don Juan came up with that were as much for his entertainment as really being what was needed for the task.
"The great thing about this stuff is you don't have to believe in it. Don Juan told me, 'Just do it. You don't need to believe.' That was great for me because I'm not a great believer. This stuff, whether you believe it or not, as you do it, it has an effect.
"The Universe is a sentient being. What are we compared to that. Don Juan said, 'It knows, it feels us. Even though we're smaller than a virus, in a sense, we still relate to It. But the mistake is to be supplicating or begging, because then it's just going to stomp you down.
"I've known the Apple Pan since I was a kid in high school. I've been going there for years. I would go there and destroy what don Juan was doing for me by having two cheeseburgers and two pies ?la mode. I continued to do that until fairly recently. I'd go with Kylie. She's a Swede, she can eat two cheeseburgers and two pies, and she doesn't even burp. Don Juan used to say that a sorcerer's body is like 24-karat gold--nothing happens to it. But I'm here to tell you that something happens. If I do that--eat the pies ?la mode--where Kylie might get a little weepy the next day, and a little sad and feel like she's not getting enough attention, if I do it my glucose level goes up and I go into shock. I don't have the kind of solid body that don Juan was talking about.
"Sorcerers like daring. It's really important to be daring, but not reckless.
"Probably 10 of the tasks, the things that don Juan gave me and the other apprentices to do, would have been sufficient to accomplish what we needed, but he gave us 500. The additional ones were primarily for don Juan's entertainment. He didn't go to movies, so he was entertained by us. Don Juan did great things, but he also got hours of enjoyment from us."
Castaneda asked Ellis what time it was, and she told him he had seven more minutes. "What amazed me with don Juan was that he gave me and his other apprentices his full attention. He was fully there with us. That was such an unusual experience. That really stood out more than anything for me. But don Juan warned me that the Nagual is just like a blanket. It can tell you stories, it can point to things, it can give you attention, but don't look under it, because there's nothing there. That was true. It's that empty.
"My father, like so many people, just wanted to be loved. And he was always waiting to be discovered, for someone to give him attention. He would go to parties and stand by the bookshelf, reading a book while watching and waiting for someone to come up to him. Hopefully a woman, who would come up and ask him, 'So what are you reading?' So he could say, 'Albert Camus. I'm so disappointed with it. It disappoints me deeply,' so he could go on with his whole thesis about why Camus doesn't say anything and why that's such a disappointment to him. Another version would be a hippy playing his guitar. Someone asks him, 'Are you into music,' and this guy responds in a very clipped way, like they do, wanting to be known for reading poetry."
He mimicked someone reciting silly poetry. "Or the naked Tai Chi guy that used to hang around in Berkeley, looking for houses to take off all his clothes and practice Tai Chi and wait for a woman to spot him. He'd say, 'Oh, I didn't know anybody lived here. I'm so sorry.' Finally he'd cover himself and ask, 'Do you own this house? It's such an incredible oasis.' The woman would say, 'Oh, do you really like the house?' and she'd invite him inside for coffee." Castaneda turned to Ellis and said, "Ellis knows about this. This is from Ellis's forthcoming book that Cleargreen is going to publish about her experiences in the Bay Area." Ellis looked both embarrassed and surprised. "And I've got another story from her book about a musician." Ellis stopped him by saying, "No, I think it's time already." Talia came in and said, "You have to leave." Castaneda said, "But I have four other stories, and I was supposed to tell the Buddhist story. Oh well, I guess next time. We're meeting next Sunday, right?"