Sunday, May 11, 1997, at Dance Home in Santa Monica (1 - 3 PM PDT)
by Corey Donovan
[On hand from Cleargreen were Kylie, Talia, Brandon, Miles, Grant and Margarita, as well as Ellis, Thurney (the "Moon Child") and Lara. There was also a new Sunday person on hand--Silvina, later known as Mila--from Argentina.]
Castaneda asked, "What's happening? You're not writing letters to Ellis any more. Tell me what's going on, I'm dying to know."
"I knew a real social scientist, who was totally into methodologies and extensive interviewing and all kinds of praxes. He was taking some cold medicine that rendered him fuzzy headed. As a result, he got hit by a truck. His head was nearly severed--he was on life support systems--and his parents ultimately decided to pull the plug. So he died. Here was this brilliant guy, so capable with the praxes, but there's nothing left of Harvey now. Who remembers Harvey?"
"Sometime later I gave a lecture in La Jolla [near San Diego]. I was with a friend, heading to the parking lot, and we saw something on top of a column next to the parking lot. It was Harvey! It certainly looked like him, sitting on top of the column. We went to see him, and he took off running. We followed him, running for the length of this parking lot [a couple of blocks]. You know, I run for eight or ten miles, but I was getting winded just in this short distance. We couldn't follow him any further. And my friend was completely exhausted. But was it Harvey, or just someone who looked like him? We'll never know. We'd get close to him and the guy would turn around and look at us, and then he'd go on."
"Even to this day, I wonder. Recently I received a postcard from my friend and all it said on it was, 'Was it Harvey?'"
Castaneda then opened the floor for us to ask questions.
Lance [now Tensegrity instructor "Brian"] was the first one to speak up. He said that when he was doing the right side pass recently, as he was drawing his hand down his face, there were "sparks." Castaneda responded, "Yeah, that's energy. You're definitely tapping into energy now. You have to believe there is energy around us. The passes do that."
Thorton [also now a Tensegrity instructor] was next. He was doing the left and right side passes in a dark room, and the room suddenly became illuminated--"there was such light from what I was doing that I could see everything." Castaneda again commented favorably, claiming that was another example of energy.
Castaneda then invited comments specifically from women. "You women must be experiencing all kinds of things," he suggested.
Laurel said that, "Often now, when I am bicycling, the colors around me will suddenly become very vivid for several minutes at a time, and everything seems more vibrant and alive." Another experience she had had when walking was that suddenly the ground would feel like it was shifting, "like it is moving under my feet." Castaneda responded, "That's very good. When you do feel the ground shifting like that, take off your shoes immediately and put down some paper that has something written on it and see if you can read it with your feet. Don't just try it once. The 'genius way' is to just try something one time, and then abandon it if it doesn't work. Keep trying it. That's a time when you could be able to read with your feet."
Madeleine described a similar experience, but said she was "frustrated with herself, because I get to a certain place and I should do more, but I don't do more. More has to be done!" Castaneda responded, "No. Don't push it in that way. That's the 'flyer' trying to defeat you by telling you you have to do it on this regimen, or you have to do it in an hour, or better quality. It sets you up for failure. 'It' gradually comes in, so don't be competitive with it; don't push it."
Keith [now Tyrone] said he had had an experience doing "Offering and Receiving Energy" with a small group and getting "chills." He asked if chills were "a sign?" Castaneda responded, "Very much, and don Juan used to talk about it--that it's like 'Intent is using a paint brush on you.'" Keith followed up by asking if we should do more of the passes that give us those sorts of reactions." Castaneda said, "Sure, if there are some that particularly do that for you, do more of those."
Monica told a rather complex story about an experience that occurred while she was lying in bed, feeling a presence pushing on her from the back. Eventually it started to talk to her, telling her to walk a certain direction. Castaneda cut her off, saying, "That's too complicated. That's coming from your liver; you ate something bad. Energy doesn't manifest like that--energy is much simpler. It's quite common to have some upset from the liver that seems to manifest in some weird story or vision. Talia has it all the time. But when something's 'lying on top of you,' that's your liver."
Jessica interjected, "What about when it's lying on top of you [meaning, as opposed to feeling it from the back]?" Castaneda responded, "That's different. In that case, ask it its name." He jokingly imitated someone asking, timidly, "Who are you?"--while this thing that is presumably having intercourse with them responds in a deep, growling voice.
Bunny offered that, "it can be in the supermarket," but that she often feels this "plane of energy, this thing coming in on an angle around my stomach, and going through me." Castaneda responded, "That's great. There is a plane or a shelf. You know the decision pass from Westwood? That's a plane, that's the one I feel." He told us to find the crest of the hip and to press there with the forefinger, and to press as well with the thumb where it falls naturally above the waist. He told us to do this on both sides at the same time, to get a sense of where the "plane" is.
Castaneda described an "I" shape, "not just a 'T' shape with a beam on top across the shoulders, but also a beam about the level of the genitals. There's a prism shape that sticks out there, and the beams are a prism shape too." He claimed, "That's what supports our torso, this 'I' shape that everyone has."
Jessica asked if the "bar" at the shoulder level was the same as the "strand of energy" that can come up to shoulder level. Castaneda clarified: "No, that's different. People either have a thin strand of energy or a thick one that can go to different levels, including shoulder level. The fine one is more vulnerable but more hardy, in a way. It can last longer. Other people have a thick one, but it's more brittle; it can break."
Greg mentioned that he was seeing a "bubbling, boiling pattern on the walls," and that he saw it pretty regularly. Castaneda responded, "That's great! You're on the verge of 'seeing.'" Later he told us that he had started seeing "bubbling" all the time, before he started 'seeing.' Once he started 'seeing' the bubbling went away.
[Note: This was one of the most exciting sessions, at the time, for many of us, because it was a rare opportunity for class members to have something of a dialogue with Castaneda. (I was personally very excited too, because virtually every sensation people had described, and especially the constant sense of seeing things "bubbling," I had experienced as well.) Greg afterwards told me that he was seeing the bubbling virtually all the time, and that he had been seeing it while he was talking to Castaneda (and when he talks to other people).]
Castaneda commented, "You're all very sensitive. I had to be hit repeatedly by a sledgehammer. And even then, I said, 'Maybe.'" He mimicked himself being hit.
Castaneda claimed, "For all of you now, your toes are covered" [meaning that our "sheen of awareness" had supposedly risen to cover our toes]. He further claimed, "I never saw anything like that before. Do you remember Mary Luciano? Sometime ago I saw that her awareness had risen above her toes. I thought that was really great and that she might lead you. But she soon got bogged down worrying about Dana [her gay male roommate who had also been a Sunday class member for many months]. She kept asking, 'How can I help Dana? How can I influence him energetically? What can I do?' She got so caught up in turmoil around that that there was finally nothing I could do but stop inviting her to class. You all remember Dana don't you? He was 'so spiritual.'"
"Virginia too had the strand running across the shoulders. I thought she could be an 'usher' for you but she started having all these assumptions and making these assertions, so it didn't stay for her. Now you have the benefit of the group--now you're all that level--nobody's really further than anybody else, so it can be more sustaining. It's not like just being on your own having that, which is hard to sustain."
Castaneda mentioned, "Carol has absorbed her daughter." He indicated that the "daughter" [meaning Nury] was "unavailable to me now," which made "Carol bigger than ever." He jokingly told us he was afraid he was going to be alone with Carol while the others were gone for the European workshop, and imitated her staring at him and purring menacingly. He jokingly implored us, "Will you stay with me? You're my fort; you're the only thing that supports me now since the balance has tilted, since the Blue Scout is with her mother. I'm alone with you."
He explained that, in the past, he had been inviting everyone from Cleargreen to attend these sessions, "But the group isn't coming anymore because they've gone off in another direction, and it's now closed. But you have this wonderful mass now and we're going to work with it. It's the only thing that keeps me going and I want to use it."
Castaneda claimed that Victoria Gutsmuths and Reni were "amazingly similar in energetic configuration." He told us it was "the Blue Scout who first noticed it. She came to me and said, 'I saw Reni at the workshop.' I told her, 'Of course you saw Reni at the workshop! You have to lie down now and take a rest after a realization like that!' But she said, "No, no, no--I saw Reni in the audience at the workshop.' And she meant Victoria."
"It's really uncanny. There are a lot of people in our group who look fairly alike, just physically. But for the energetic configuration to be so similar . . . they are 'cyclic beings.' Reni is more silent than Victoria. When Victoria becomes more silent, she'll actually experience things that Reni is experiencing. They could [feel like they were] in two places. They're the closest alike in energy of any two beings I've seen. In don Juan's world there were quite a few pairs who looked pretty similar, but the only ones who were energetically identical were me and Carol."
He again mentioned that Reni used to go into the bathroom every night, close the door, and "scream at the top of her lungs, 'Intent!' six times, with her screechy, hard-to-take voice," causing police cars to be diverted to her apartment building. "Victoria's got the same voice. Fortunately Reni never did it nine times or the cops would have found her for sure. Don't do that."
Castaneda referred to someone in their group having to be "separated" or told to leave. [I later learned this was the young, attractive Argentine named Carmela, who had been a roommate of Thurney.]
Someone (Daniel I think) asked what we should feel when pushing the spots in our forehead. Castaneda responded, "You should have two lumps on the forehead, but most of us don't. We've lost them. Don Juan used to come up to me with a marker and draw a circle counterclockwise on the right side of my forehead, and clockwise on the left side. He used to draw it several times, going around and around the circle. Then I would become aware and start sensing things with those two centers in my forehead. They would become like other eyes. That's how don Juan would sensitize us to it."
Castaneda mentioned Joanie (Barker), saying, "She can't survive without Taisha and Florinda, but she can't go with them either. Her parents are quite aged and she feels very responsible for them and she worries about them all the time. That's something that keeps her rooted." He indicated they were both in a very expensive rest home that "costs a million dollars a year." He told us, "Her mother [who must be in her 90's] has Alzheimer's and gets quite violent. So she has to be sedated all the time and doesn't really recognize her. So you have to wonder why she's bothering with it at all. But she won't let go of it; she worries about it, and that's keeping her from going." He also opined that, "A mother, or an aged parent, should just be able to 'say goodbye' to the child and not beg for help. 'Goodbye. I'm on my own now. Don't be taking care of me.' It takes a warrior to do that though. Most mothers are saying, 'Help me! I need you to look after me.'"
Likewise, "Talia still hasn't said goodbye to her parents yet. I don't investigate, I don't need to find these things out. She's shown me letters, which I've said she should get rid of. But I've come to find out recently that she's very tied to her mother and parents. Am I going to have to say goodbye to Talia? How could I say goodbye to Talia? Unless she's severed that connection with her parents she can't go with us."
Castaneda told us, "I didn't even get to say goodbye to my parents, since I lost them at an early age. [Yeah, his mother when he was the tender age of 24, and his father many years after that, after Castaneda had ceased all contact with him.] So I can't really advise you on how you go about doing that."
Castaneda did a little riff on Heaven's Gate: "Do you believe that we're all going to be picked up by a craft that's following behind the comet? And next week we're all going to get castrated! We need to lose this, this 'ugliness' in order to make the journey. ("I can't even point to it," he said, as he jokingly just motioned in "that" direction.) Thorton's going to be the first one. Thorton [he motioned to him to move] over there, now!" Castaneda then broke character and laughed, "Thorton's going to be out running down the street to get away!" He then ordered us, "Don't lose that 'ugliness'! You may need it. Don't lose anything."
That reminded him of St. Augustine: "preaching that 'you shouldn't be a libertine,' even though he had been one himself. He's writing when he's sixty-five about how young men shouldn't be libertines. Thorton, aren't you about twenty?" Thorton responded, "More or less," to which we all laughed.
Castaneda again mentioned his joke about the rings they were supposedly making up for themselves with "FF" on them--for "Flyer Fighter," as well as "Forever Fucking."
He told us that Talia recently had gotten sick after eating too much. "We go to Olvera Street, to this old restaurant [La Luz del Sol] that's been around forever, and stuff ourselves. Talia will divide up the extra--half the meat and half the frijoles--and give them to me. We both gorge ourselves and walk out in 'good shape,'" he said, imitating himself walking with a huge belly. "Kylie's smart, she sort of picks at it. But we make ourselves sick."
Castaneda said, "People think they have so many worries and that they need Prozac. Instead, if things are getting to be too much, it's perfectly acceptable, in fact, you should, curl up in a fetal position and suck your left thumb. Well, not 'suck' it so much but 'massage the palate.' Twirling your hair is optional," he joked (as he imitated this position).
He then asserted, "There are lots of 'points' on the palate. It should be a project for you to come up with a 'map of the palate.' We can sell maps of the palate!"
He claimed that the palate was directly underneath the hypothalmus. (Later he stated that it was "directly beneath the 'old brain.'") "So pushing on that area is a way of connecting with the old brain. So you should definitely map the palate. Over time, you find points that do particular things." He advised, "You should be sure that your thumb is clean, of course, before sticking it in your mouth. You can have a jar of alcohol by the bed and dip it in there first and then hold it out in the air to dry, and blow on it until it's completely dry. Now why do I know so much about this . . .?"
Castaneda talked for an unusual length of time--nearly an hour and a half--before we broke to do passes. When we got into position for movements, he first showed us how to do "Two Circles of Energy" more correctly. [We did this at length, and he and Kylie both seemed to be giving Thorton a hard time, trying to get him to change his form.]
Kylie and Talia then led us in four additional left-and-right-side passes (all but one of which had been taught at the night sessions). One right side pass was completely new, and there was a left side movement with clawing motions that we had done before in Sunday sessions. They sped through each of these forms five times, without breaking them down. [Castaneda afterwards commented that it was great we were picking them up so quickly, but I doubted we were fully retaining what we had been shown, since not everyone seemed to be following.]
Castaneda did not say that we would be coming back the following Sunday unless we received a call otherwise (he seemed to have forgotten to make that announcement). He did say, "Our rallying cry will be 'Chili Con Carne!'"