Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

For the sake of ornament and illumination.

Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:23 am

THE MISUSE OF WESTERN TERMS BY EASTERN MYSTICS, by Charles Carreon

This essay is a brief critique of an article entitled "Conserving the Inner Ecology," drawn from a talk by a "Thai forest monk," named Buddhadasa Bhikkhu. At first read, Buddhadasa's article appears unobjectionable. It seems to offer gentle words of advice to hyped-up modern people, and an explanation of the spiritual meanings behind several words that are of great importance to Western thought -- nature, conservation, and ecology.

The author claims to understand the mystical connection between the outer world and the inner world. As an Eastern interpretation of the old maxim, "as above, so below," it doesn't rate badly. But as advice for what to do in order to deal with the ecological crisis now facing humanity, it is useless, indeed destructive.

The logic driving the argument is simple: "nature is all things that are born naturally, ordinarily, out of the natural order of things...." This tautology drives the entire argument. While none of us can ascertain what is natural, the speaker uses this tautological argument to fuel all of his other arguments. He claims to discover "four fundamental aspects of nature" that he identifies as "nature itself, the law of nature, the duty that human beings must carry out toward nature, and the result that comes with performing this duty according to the law of nature." This is all because of the "basic dhammic law of nature that regulates everything."

The problem with articulating a law this broadly is that we don't know what it commands. Does it command humans to protect their children? Do we violate the law of nature when we put people in the hospital and make them well? Do we violate the law of nature when we develop vaccines that frustrate the spread of disease? Do we violate the law of nature when we put out fires, as modern day foresters tell us? Do we violate the law of nature when we fail to till the fields that could produce food because we don't want to displace native peoples? The law of nature, as explained by this Buddhist, gives no indication.

The essay claims that it will teach us how to "conserve the law of nature," within ourselves, but this is just adopting one more Western word and twisting the meaning. If we read closely, "conserving the law of nature," means nothing other than practicing dharma.

And that's really the answer to all of the problems, anyway, according to this author. "When there is no ego or selfishness, there is nothing that will destroy nature, nothing that will exploit and abuse nature." This is about as practical as visualizing whirled peas. Of course a planet full of egoless beings wouldn't damage anything. They would probably all just sit around and turn into a bowl of jelly. Nobody even knows what it means to be without an ego except this man. How can this be a prescription for saving the ecology of the world? Ah, he explains it here. Once we have no egos then "the external, physical aspect of nature will be able to conserve itself automatically." Right, even with 5 Billion egoless beings eating, driving cars, burning fossil fuels, and polluting the seas.

Now, for the happy close-out. "When Buddhists remember that the Buddha was born under and among trees, awaking while sitting under a tree, taught in the outdoors sitting among trees and, in the end, passed away into parinirvana beneath some trees, it is impossible not to love trees and not to want to conserve them." Very comforting, except that Nepal is a very Buddhist country, and despite all the tree lovers there, there is nary a tree to be found. The Thais started out with more trees, but will end up with just about as many as the Nepalese if they keep it up, notwithstanding their being Buddhist.

All of these problems, of course, are the outward projection of inner "defilements" that disturb the "mind's natural ecology....like evil spirits or demons that destroy the mind's natural state." Yes, but that doesn't mean that corporate executives with planet raping on their mind, and military leaders who bomb first and ask questions later are just figments of our neurotic imagination. They are real people who will not go away simply because we meditate effectively.

The speaker is comforted because he looks out and sees that "the entire cosmos is a cooperative system." He needs a bigger telescope. Looking through the Hubble, scientists have discovered the universe is a demolition derby among celestial bodies of vastly different size and speed. Tiny black holes can rape a red giant down to nothing. Every 10,000 years or so our solar system dips through part of the spiral arm of the milky way galaxy where lots of big, fast-moving stars and space junk proliferate, and we're lucky we don't have an interstellar collision every damn time it does that. The speaker suggests we "bring back the cooperative in the form of comrades sharing birth, aging, illness, and death." That's hard to argue with, but then he concludes by saying "then we will have plenty of time to create the best ecology." This seems to suggest that we can complacently wait until we get our mind and society sorted out before we tackle the problem of the world's degrading physical condition.

I would say quite the contrary. Whenever you get around to realizing the nature of the universe in your own mind, it will still be there. If we wait too many more years before addressing the ecological problems afflicting the earth, it will be too late. So what would you do first?

CONSERVING THE INNER ECOLOGY

by Buddhadasa Bhikkhu

Only genuine Buddhists can conserve nature on the deepest level, the mental level. When the mental nature has been conserved, the external physical nature can conserve itself. When we talk about this inner nature, we mean a fundamental essence or element of Dhamma. When this can be preserved within, the external nature can certainly preserve itself. When this inner nature or dhammadhatu is conserved, there is nothing that will cause selfishness or egoism. It knows that nothing is worth clinging to as being "self," is free of notions like "me" and "mine," and is therefore unselfish. When there is no selfishness, there is nothing that will go out and destroy the external nature. When nothing is trying to destroy this physical nature, it is quite able to protect itself.

The Buddha referred to this inner nature as "dhammadhatu," the dhatu (element or essence) of Dhamma (nature). Sometimes he simply called it "dhatu." This dhatu is the source and basis for Dhamma, for all of nature. He proclaimed that "Whether a Tathagata has appeared yet or not, the dhammadhatu exists absolutely and naturally."

In other words, nothing occurs, exists, changes, or dies by itself. Nothing happens except through various causes and conditions. All change takes place through causes and conditions. Even death and destruction require causes and conditions, either the presence of ones that kill and destroy, or the absence of those that support. Further, the causes and conditions of one thing are caused and conditioned by others. These interactions of conditionality extend through the universe – mental and physical – connecting everything in a vast web of inter-dependence, inter-relationship, inter-connectedness, inter-wovenness. So supreme is this natural fact that we can call it "the law of nature" or "God." Nothing is more powerful or awesome than this most fundamental and ever-present Truth.

Let us consider more carefully what we mean by the word "nature." Although this English term does not quite fit our Buddhist term (dhammajati), it will serve once we have explained sufficiently. Nature (dhammajati) is all things that are born naturally, ordinarily, out of the natural order of things, that is, from Dhamma. Everything arising out of Dhamma, everything born from Dhamma, is what we mean by "nature." This is what is absolute and has the highest power in itself. Nature has at least four fundamental aspects. If we don’t understand them, it is useless to speak of "preserving nature." So please examine these four fundamental aspects of nature:

* nature itself;
* the law of nature;
* the duty that human beings must carry out towards nature;
* and the result that comes with performing this duty according to the law of nature.

[Ajarn Buddhadasa was always careful about terminology and felt that sloppy use of words was an important obstacle to the understanding of Dhamma. He put great effort into explaining key Pali terms, none of them more important than "Dhamma." Here he gives his standard explanation of Dhamma's most important dimensions. Although not quite identical with the four noble truths, it is worth comparing. --Suan Mokkh website editor]

Let's consider ourselves. Each human being includes the body of nature, as expressed and found in our own bodies. In us there is the basic dhammic law of nature that regulates everything. Everything in these bodies consequently carries on according to the law of nature. When we have our natural duty, we practice that duty in order to maintain the correctness of nature. Depending on how we perform that duty, we experience its results or fruits: happiness, dukkha, satisfaction, dissatisfaction. Within ourselves, within just these physical bodies, we have all four meanings of nature.

In one human being, we can find all four aspects of nature. Throughout the entire world, we can find all four meanings of nature. And in the universe, including all the worlds together, we can see the body of nature, the law of nature, the duty of nature, and the result of nature.

If we understand all aspects of nature and conserve the law of nature within ourselves, it will then be impossible for selfishness and egoism to arise. When there is no ego or selfishness, there is nothing that will destroy nature, nothing that will exploit and abuse nature. Then the external, physical aspect of nature will be able to conserve itself automatically. Therefore, please be very interested in this inner nature. When there is no selfishness, we can preserve the purity and beauty of nature. Without selfishness, this world will be naturally pure and beautiful.

When Buddhists remember that the Buddha was born under and among trees, awakened while sitting under a tree, taught in the outdoors sitting among trees and, in the end, passed away into parinibbana beneath some trees, it is impossible not to love trees and not to want to conserve them. This too comes from maintaining a correct inner nature, and so it is natural to preserve the outer nature. In this way it isn’t very difficult to conserve the external physical nature.

In other words, Dhamma is the ecology of the mind. This is how nature has arranged things, and it has always been like this, in a most natural way. The mind with Dhamma has a natural spiritual ecology because it is fresh, beautiful, quiet, and joyful. This is most natural. That the mind is fresh means it isn’t dried up or parched. Its beauty is Dhammic, not sensual or from painting colors. It is calm and peaceful because nothing disturbs it. It contains a deep spiritual solitude, so that nothing can disturb or trouble it. Its joy is cool. The only joy that lives up to its name must be cool, not the hot happiness that is so popular in the world, but a cool joyfulness. If none of the defilements like greed, anger, fear, worry, and delusion arise, there is this perfect natural ecology of the Dhammic mind. But as soon as the defilements occur, the mind’s natural ecology is destroyed instantly. These defilements are like evil spirits or demons that destroy the mind’s natural state.

In this context, we can specify the defilement called "craving," the craving that destroys the inner ecology of the mind and then expresses itself outward in destroying the physical ecology. This thing called "craving" must be understood well. Craving always means the foolish desire that arises out of ignorance (avijja), out of not understanding things as they actually are. Unfortunately, whenever Buddhists speak of samsara, most of them teach that every kind of desire is craving. This is incorrect. Only that which desires stupidly is properly called "craving." If it wants intelligently, it is called "sankappa," (aspiration or aim), which we can call "wise want." There is an important distinction here that should never be confused. Craving is always ignorant, no matter how we translate it into English. If, however, the desire is wise, it should be called "aspiration" or "wise aim."

Craving destroys both the inner-mental and outer-physical ecologies.

Take a good look: The entire cosmos is a cooperative system. We must honor and worship the cooperative system. The sun, the moon, the planets, and the stars are a giant cooperative. They are all inter-connected and inter-related in order to exist. In the same world, everything co-exists as a cooperative. Humans and animals and trees and the earth are integrated as a cooperative. The organs of our own bodies – feet, legs, hands, arms, eyes, nose, lungs, kidneys – function as a cooperative in order to survive. Let's bring back the cooperative in the form of comrades sharing birth, aging, illness, and death. Then we will have plenty of time to create the best ecology.

--This is an edited version of a talk by the great Thai forest teacher Buddhadasa Bhikkhu and is almost identical to the version printed in Tricycle Buddhist Review Winter 1998 issue.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:25 am

THE PROMISED GOD MAN IS WEIRD, by Charles Carreon ©

[Introduction: This essay was originally written in 2003, and posted on the American-Buddha.com website. The epilogue was written today, June 13, 2009.]

Just the other day, for the first time, I found myself interested in Franklin Jones. I found this book of his, The Promised God-Man Is Here, at “The Bookwagon”, down in the Ashland Shopping Center. It's a big book, like a Michener novel, with a picture of a fat white man with his palms facing forward at chest level. He's wearing a saffron robe on his upper body, his legs and knees are bare, his head is slightly back-tilted, and he seems to either be beaming spiritual energy at us, or keeping his distance. Since he's sitting in the midst of an aura of wavy gold lines, I think beaming is intended to be conveyed. The purity of the subject addressed by the book is signaled by the white cover, associated in Tibetan iconography with pride, vajra, the north and the god realm.

The book is by "Carolyn Lee, Ph.D.," one of the numerous female devotees who have cast themselves on the funeral pyre of Franklin's love. Cause he's a ramblin' man, a complete unknown, a rollin' stone, a rompin' stompin' heaping hunk of burnin' love. That's Franklin, Lord above, and as on earth so in heaven, and also at the seven-eleven. This man is bad! He is so bad he should be locked in a cage with Dr. Laura and Judge Judy, and forced to satisfy their unnatural lusts. Or required to share a lifeboat with Chogyam Trungpa, Krishnamurti, and Madonna for company, and a package of beef jerky and a bottle of Crown Royal to liven up the experience. Just imagine how many ways that could turn out.

Bubba Free John was Franklin's moniker when first I heard of him, back in the days when "The Knee of Listening" was the kind of thing the older hippies worried about. I was only worried that I wasn't getting enough time in the sack with sexy chicks, and serious religion, like serious politics, did not hold my attention. Now I find out that, for all of the religious overlay, his concerns were much like my own, but more grandiose. His recent outpourings indicate that he is now even more convinced of his eternal worth to humanity than he was back in the hippie era, but even then he knew he deserved more than the average guy. He made a career out of stealing women from gullible young hippies who could be buffaloed. The prettier the girls, the better, and Franklin established a system for getting the couple stoned and drunk, having his pals separate the guy from the chick, after which Franklin would seduce her and initiate her into Franklin-worship. Later on, Franklin's assistants got a share of the flesh they helped bring to the altar.

Being ready to drop your drawers and get physical was very much a part of the Franklin scene. Going with his strengths, Franklin accumulated as many as nine official wives, a condition bound to incite envy in those of small experience. Franklin's power over women gave him power over men, and the clique of seducers at the core of his gang gave him the macho support that provokes swooning among members of the fairer sex.

Franklin cuckolded large numbers of men, who stood silent and helpless as their women shucked off their clothes and walked into bliss. The men, deprived of their testicles, couldn't help but hang around. They could lessen the pain by pretending that God had taken their woman. If they pretended Franklin was divine, they could hang around and try to win back the love that had been whisked away from them. They might even get one of Franklin's other castoff women.

On the other hand, if a woman had money, Franklin could always separate her from her man by tossing a new woman his way. Then, she would look to Franklin to heal the wound. Franklin could help her understand that the new relationship was also a good thing. She just needed to open her heart. Keeping her purse closed wasn't helping. That's the way it is in a religious community. You open up your heart, your purse, your legs. Wherever your treasure is, you share it.

This simple formula for a happy and successful cult kept Franklin fed, stoned and caressed for around thirty years. In The Promised God-Man Is Here he again recorded and revised the history of his achievements for posterity, laying out a feast for his devotees. If you were not a believer, this book won’t make you one, but it can still be enjoyed as a study in psychopathology, in which the true character of the patient's delusion is gradually revealed by the steady accumulation of character details.

Never content with one name where an evolving string of them will do, this avatar morphed from Franklin Jones to Bubba Free John to Da Love-Ananda, to Da, Adi-Da, and finally Ruchira Avatar Adi Da Samraj. Rarely able to reside in one place for more than a few years, Franklin up and left his faithless pseudo-disciples in a huff on numerous occasions. Of course, some say he fled Marin County in order to avoid more heat arising out of lawsuits against him by abused students, but I think he just got in a snit. There was pace and staging to Franklin's inner freak show. He managed to keep his devotees on pins and needles about his dreams, his heart palpitations, his swoons, his depressions, his crying jags, his decaying health, his mission to save the world. They feared his judgments, the cruel accusation that they were undermining his mission by failing to generate devotion, cash, contacts, the things a messiah needs. How can you save a world that doesn't want to be saved? The things a guru has to do with his own hands! Are we out of Valium again?!

Yes, he confronted them about it! The slacking, the fake devotion, the heel-dragging, the complete lack of concern for the fact that there were FOUR BILLION PEOPLE on the earth who NEVER HEARD OF DA! WAITING! HE REMINDED THEM: THIS IS INCARNATION THEY ARE WAITING FOR, BUT DA'S DISCIPLES are SLACKING! Back in the mid-eighties, when they first moved to Fiji, Franklin told them, he would MAKE HIS MOVE! Well, he did! But did they? Nooooooo. They just sat there with their simpy devoted faces and LET HIM DOWN!

It was true. Da was God, the baby God. Sitting in a diaper full of shit, screaming for somebody to wipe his butt. Waving his rattle-sceptre, screaming for food, comfort, adulation. His disciples did their job. They adored him and shut him up. They did it in shifts until he died. That was the task his devotees took on, and as Da was their witness, they fulfilled it.

Epilogue

On November 27, 2008, Franklin Jones was working on an art installation of massive painted aluminum constructions. Inflated estimations of the artistic heft of his output had already been floated, and so it appeared that Adi Da was about to enter his Warhol phase. With the international art market tanking, his entry into the field was well-timed, since artists able to fund their own shows and grease the publicity machinery that sustains buzz and prices are a rarity, and good reviews could be bought cheaply. Then Time, that wounds all heels, pulled its rug smoothly out from under the feet of the man, and at the age of 69, the bullshit ceased to flow. At least from the mouth of Adi Da himself, which had ceased to produce words about the same time as his heart stopped beating. His devotees, of course, had just begun. Using the Internet, they began proclaiming on his behalf:

As devotees know, Beloved Bhagavan Adi Da Samraj is a Divine Yogi. There is a long history of such beings having very unconventional “death events” or moments in their lives. We have seen this in Beloved Bhagavan’s Case in many circumstances in the past -- the Ruchira Dham or Lopez Island Event, and the Divine Emergence, as merely two of them. Certainly it is the hope of this moment, as we write, that Beloved Bhagavan will Re-Enter His Body and begin a new Phase of His Work. It is our hope and intention that He will Re-Animate the Body and wake up.


Franklin Jones, being merely human, did not “wake up” from his heart attack. But those who had known and loved him consoled themselves on a website dedicated to his memory by posting audio recordings with a focus on the following message:

That Adi Da will always be eternally present, and furthermore, that He has provided us with all the means necessary to locate Him, making His Presence forever available to us.


At this point, our jeering and laughter reach their proper end, because the absurdity of Adi Da’s self-promotion, and the slavishness of his disciples’ adulation stand revealed in their completeness, and whatever there was to expose about the man in life, death has taken the laboring oar, and we may rest from our exertions. This epilogue thus is properly concluded with an epitaph, and since Jones was a false guru from the sixties, made of ordinary American clay, his epitaph from the pen of an American boy, whose music will play on and on long after Jones’ silly sermons are forgotten:

“And castles made of sand
Slips into the sea
Eventually…”
-- Jimi Hendrix
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:27 am

THE RADIAN OF OUR BEING, by Charles Carreon

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The earth, being a large sphere, is shot through from its center to its surface with lines called “the radians” of the sphere. An infinite number radians pass through the earth's center, which is also true of a golfball. The radians in a golfball, however, have but slight gravitational pull, all effects being masked by the overwhelming pull of the earth, as even Tiger Woods has learned. Radians are everywhere in evidence. But for the wind, raindrops would always fall straight down a radian. All radians are essentially the individual expressions of a single principle -- the earth's radian.

It’s the triumph of living things that they defeat gravity. Rocks can’t manage it. They roll downhill, they stay there. We roll downhill, we get up and walk back up the hill, at least if the fall didn’t kill us. And death, of course, puts an end to our mobility, our ability to ambulate, to make our way from one place to another.

We defeat gravity is large ways and small. The biggest feat of all is circulating all that blood through all the tiny little capillaries in your cells, aerating all those hemoglobin-carrying red cells through the immense complex network of your lungs, square miles of tissue, if you spread it all out, and all crawling with your cells, breathing, absorbing oxygen – your lungs really contain a vast hacienda of breathing surface. The heart keeps fluid pumping through all of that vast liquid circulatory system through a dynamic tension system that gets help from strong leg muscles and the hydraulic assistance of the diaphragm. Our body is a pulsing bubble of liquid that stands up against gravity, and delights in speed and acceleration, even the utter defiance of gravity through flight.

With all this speeding about, however, we forget the health and spiritual value of utilizing the radian in all our activities. In this essay I discuss first physical, and then moral and spiritual uprightness.

To appreciate the value of the physical uprightness, consider the Leaning Tower of Pisa, which has departed structurally from the radian due to a bad foundation. While the citizens of Pisa would not want to lose this structure, if they were allowed to have only one building in the entire city, I’m sure that would not be it. The tables will slide, or at least pencils will slide across the room. Without continuous maintenance, the building would become unusable and hazardous. Compare this with the two WTO towers, so well detonated that they fell right down along the radian, violating every rule of how buildings fall in the absence of controlled demolition, unless of course, like Tower 7, they were in fact the targets of controlled demolition. The science of controlled demolition of course involves a detailed utilization of the power of the radian, but it is a corrupt, tragic application of it, much like the dropping of bombs. Fie on these black magicians of death. We must use the radian for better purposes.

Purposes like standing up straight under the sky, like a redwood, for example. A redwood silently utilizes the quiet energy of wind and rain to pump enormous daily volumes of water straight up, hundreds of feet – up to a thousand liters per day, which is 440 gallons. Yet, as everyone what has inspected a Sequoia can tell you, the pumping apparatus is invisible, silent, and no human has yet duplicated the feat or adequately explained the mechanism involved. In “Shakespeare In Love” Geoffrey Rush couldn’t explain how all the backstage chaos congealed into a dramatic presentation, and instead admitted “It’s a mystery.” Similarly, botanists come up with the same answer when asked to explain the mystery of the great water pumps of the ancient forests that transport water far more quietly and economically than humans, contributing oxygen to the air as a by-product of their labor. Built in perfect harmony with the radian, Sequoias grow straight up, keeping the pumping distance as short as possible, and the trees to standing straight and tall for hundreds of years, in high winds and heavy rains. Such are the virtues of physical uprightness.

Moral uprightness is traditionally expressed as loyalty to ethical standards, as Marcus Aurelius put it in his Mediations: “He is a competitor in the greatest of all contests, the struggle against passion's mastery; he is imbued through and through with uprightness, welcoming wholeheartedly whatever falls to his lot and rarely asking himself what others may be saying or doing or thinking except when the public interest requires it.” In his essay entitled The Clear Sound of Jewels, Takuan Soho reveals a more penetrating view of human uprightness:

“Within this body solidified by desire is concealed the absolutely desireless and upright core of the mind. This mind is not in the body of the Five Skandhas, has no color or form, and is not desire. It is unwaveringly correct, it is absolutely straight. When this mind is used as a plumb-line, anything done at all will be right-mindedness. This absolutely straight thing is the substance of right-mindedness.”

Takuan Soho thus urges us to use “the desireless and upright core of the mind” as a “plumb-line.” What is he talking about? A plumb-line is a tool consisting of a plumb bob and a piece of string. A plumb bob is a weight, traditionally made of lead, that is allowed to hang straight down from a string, and thus used by carpenters and bricklayers to establish lines perpendicular to the earth. Careful use of the plumb-line is essential to create a structure that is in harmony with the radian of the earth, and therefore, will stand directly on its foundation. A structure that deviates from the radian is already in the process of collapse.

Thus, like carpenters and bricklayers, who constantly consult the earth’s radian by means of their plum-bob, those who wish to possess “right-mindedness” will constantly consult the “absolutely desireless and upright core of the mind.” This is to rely upon the Radian of Our Being.

What is the Radian of Our Being? Is it a physical attribute like the radians emanating from the enormous, spherical earth? Indeed, it is continuous with and energized by the radian of the earth. Passing through each of us is a radian of the earth. When we stand, sit, walk or lie on the earth, we are directly on our spot, and that spot is our personal radian.

What aspect of us directly senses the presence of the radian of the earth, and hence, the Radian of Our Being? That organ exists, and it is not the eye, ear, nose, tongue or the cognitive organ, the cerebellum. No, it is the most sophisticated organ of touch in our body, hidden away in the core of our head, the vestibular system of the inner ear, which maintains our equilibrium. Interestingly enough, Takuan Soho identifies all of the senses with desire, but states that the upright core of the mind lies within and unaffected by the traffic of sight, sound, smell and touch. Our sense of balance is satisfied, not by waves of sensation and perception, but by the simple return to the center of one’s physical being.

The Radian of Our Being is thus accessible through simple, upright activities. Since the earth supplies a radian wherever we find ourselves, it is an inexhaustible resource. Like the trees that manage the labor of standing straight for hundreds of years and pumping hundreds of gallons of water a day, our bodies are aided in their labor by standing, sitting and lying on the radian of the earth.

When you settle into the Radian of Your Being, the fluid circulation through your body, the distribution of air through your cells, the pressure between your head and your lower body, and many other liquid phenomena, will equalize, easing the labor of your heart, lungs, and veins. The sense of settling will deepen as your inner ear records less and less motion in your body. From settling comes the sensation of thoughts precipitating out of your mind like solid matter that settles to the bottom as our choppy mental atmosphere, and clarity ensues as floating thoughts diffract less of the light of consciousness. Self-awareness then shines like the sun, and flowing breezes of continuous mind energy stretch our perceptions like cloudy wisps across the sky.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:29 am

THE SUTRA OF THE LEAVES, by Baksheesh the Madman

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Thus have I heard. One summer afternoon in a place near Rajgir, when the heat of the day was intense, while walking in an area of sandy dunes with Ananda, the World-Honoured One remarked, "Ananda, this place where we are staying is very hot."

"Yea, World-Honoured One, very hot indeed," replied Ananda.

Turning to Ananda, walking at his side, the World-Honoured One, gesturing gracefully, extended his arm toward a grove of palm trees that was being attacked by workmen with knives, who stripped the leaves from the trees and carried them off in baskets.

"Ananda," asked the World-Honoured One, "why are those workmen taking the leaves from the palm trees?"

"They are harvesting them,” replied Ananda, "to use as writing paper, for books that are being written."

“Is that why, Ananda,” questioned the World-Honoured One, “it is so difficult to find a shady place to sit in this place?”

“I believe that the World-Honoured One is correct in suggesting this to be one of the reasons why it is so difficult to find a shady place to sit in this place.”

The World-Honoured One then gestured gracefully to a place where men were cutting down trees and burning the trunks in pits from which dark black clouds emerged. “Ananda,” asked the World-Honoured One, “why are those men burning the trees in those pits?”

“To make charcoal, World-Honoured One, that is used to make ink for writing on the palm leaves.”

“So the trees,” the World-Honoured One said, “are being sacrificed to the writing of books, Ananda?”

“Yea, World-Honoured One, books of mighty importance,” replied Ananda solemnly.

"What books are those?" asked the World-Honoured One.

"The books, World-Honoured One," replied Ananda, "written by the monks of the Sangha, recording the sacred Dharma of the World-Honoured One that you have offered to all men from the generosity of your noble mind."

The World-Honoured One asked further, "Ananda, have you arranged for my words to be written on leaves, for the leaves to be bundled into books, for the books to be distributed to faithful, and for the proceeds of all this virtue to be directed to the Sangha treasury?"

Then Ananda beamed with satisfaction as he announced, "World-Honoured One, indeed have I done these things. I have arranged for the faithful recording of every word of teaching spoken by the World-Honoured One, and so great has been the clamor of the faithful for your teachings that the trees have indeed been sacrificed in great number to this great work.”

The World-Honoured One the asked, "Are my words, Ananda, more important than the trees?"

"Yea, World-Honoured One, far more important," replied Ananda, "your words are the highest Dharma known among all gods and humans, whereas a tree gives coconuts, dates, mangos, tamarinds are also very tasty, but nothing like the Dharma in value."

“Ananda,” asked the World-Honoured One, “are your words recorded in these books that have been made in such great number?”

“No, World-Honoured One, they are your words, the words of the Dharma,” replied Ananda.

“So Ananda,” asked the World-Honoured One, “if there were no more trees and everyone knew the Dharma, would my Dharma have triumphed over the world of Samsara?

"I do not know, World-Honoured One," replied Ananda, "I do not know the answer to your question."

"Then I will tell you the answer to my question, Ananda," replied the World-Honoured One. "My Dharma would not have triumphed over the world of Samsara if in doing so the trees were lost, because my Dharma is a Dharma for the benefit of all living things, and when beings are killed they are not benefited, and once the trees are lost, all other living things will follow their path to death. Therefore, a Dharma that causes the destruction of the trees and of all living things cannot be the Dharma of the World-Honoured One.”

“World-Honoured One,” answered Ananda, “I was only trying to propagate the Dharma by distributing the teachings more widely, to permit more earnest study by your students.”

“Ananda,” questioned the World-Honoured One, “before you became Bikkhu Ananda, did you have no books?”

“No, World-Honoured One,” answered Ananda, “like yourself, I had a library in my home, filled with important books.”

“Ananda,” continued the World-Honoured One, “Do you wish to have a library again?”

“No,” replied Ananda, “I wish to be a Bikkhu and to follow your World-Honoured Self.”

“Then,” replied the World-Honoured One, “You must give up this notion that the Dharma is written in books. The Dharma is to gain understanding, not knowledge. Do you understand, Ananda?”

“Yea, World-Honoured One, I understand,” replied Ananda.

“Since you understand, then, Ananda,” said the World-Honoured One, “you and all of the bikkhus will abandon this practice of recording my words, of which you do not yet know the meaning, and will destroy these books you have made, and devote yourselves to understanding my meaning.”

“So will it be done, World-Honoured One,” replied Ananda, and respectfully leaving the presence of the World-Honoured One, arranged for the destruction of the books and notified the workmen that the library project would be abandoned.

Thus have I heard.

Baksheesh the Madman
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:30 am

THE THREE ELEMENTS OF COUNTER-INSURGENCY AND NARCOTICS ENFORCEMENT, by Charles Carreon

These are:

1. Surveillance
2. Infliltration
3. Agent Provocateurism

1. Surveillance

Observe the narcotics users and dealers, or the politically active, and discover their meeting places, clothing styles and other signals, jargon and slang, passwords and other security mechanisms.

2. Infliltration

Adopting the appearance of the target population, infiltrate by imitating their appearance, style and speech.

3. Agent Provocateurism

Using the infiltrators, set up drug deals or other criminal behavior. Encourage, dare, coerce, trick or bribe targets into performing compromising acts. Bind them to secrecy and then challenge them to commit acts that prove loyalty. Those acts will later provide you with a halter to control these persons, who can then be turned traitor when you reveal your true allegiance to them. The fun never ends, once you get to this stage.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:31 am

THE TIBETAN WALL OF SILENCE, by Charles Carreon

Here I am, visiting the Tibetan Wall of Silence. It's very quiet here, probably because of the restless patrols of warrior monks with big sticks who threaten anyone who hangs around. They absolutely take no lip, knowing of course that book learning is not their forte, and they prefer not to engage on the enemy's ground.

On the other side of the Tibetan Wall of Silence, there is a great deal of chatter. Ceaseless chatter, disputation, uncertainty, neurosis admitted, splayed out for revelation. Among themselves, Buddhists are fulsome in their admissions of spiritual defect. Rotten Buddhists, losers who can't practice, ass kissers without real motivation. Just tell them a lama said those things about them, and they'll agree it's all true. And it is. Nobody can win at the game, and everyone pretends to have the painful problem of life sewed up, like old Ram Dass, half-gorked by his spiritual exertions, probably unable to admit that he's madder than hell under the assumed serenity. Yep, they'll admit that in an encounter-type situation, or while doing a little drinking with other Buddhists, but they will never admit it to the opposition.

The opposition gets the stony silence when start talking back to the preachers, criticising the doctrine. Then everyone's perfect. They know why they're meditating, how to meditate, and that it's working. They know the path, they are on it, and they are making progress.

Of course, practicioners have to tell themselves these things, because otherwise the tautological engine would not run. Further, I believe we must all stoke our own fires with self-encouragement and healthy pride. But self-derision is a counter-force that can cause a painful mental split in the mind of the devotee. Tara often reminds me of how much she feels injured by having indoctrinated herself with frightful images and metaphors, and having to overcome the threat of those self-erected icons.

Of course, the silent Buddhists say, one must encourage oneself in the right path, the doctrinally approved path, and that means being mindful of pitfalls to spiritual growth. Sounds great, but guess what? Your little baby mind inside your heart doesn't hear all your high flown reasoning. That little baby mind just wants to know that it is safe, that it is good, that it is not guilty, not threatened, and is loved. Question why we would feed our mind a diet of cosmic-sized fears about multiple innumerable afterlives to be spent in roaring furnaces or as wild beasts or as long-lived gods in heavens unseen.

What did the person who was the Buddha think about these cosmic conundrums, about the fear of the afterlife? If you ask the Tibetans, of course, he knew very well that the universe was exactly as the Tibetans now conceive it -- an amalgam of old Vedic notions, interpreted using Chinese and Nepalese artisanship, and infused with the strange macabre spirit of Mongolian herdsmen and their wrathful gods of the howling wastelands of stone and ice. Because, of course, on another plane, he had divinely appeared to do a Special Turning of the Wheel of the Dharma in the Highest Heaven, attended by all the gods and goddesses, gurus, vidyadharas, bodhisattvas and arhats from the ten directions and three times. And the lamas of today are emanations of that very Buddha. You better believe it.

Strange, of course, that not a word of these extracurricular activities of the Buddha were ever mentioned by him. He sat around telling stories about how, if you argued with him about irrelevant details, you were like a guy stuck by a poison arrow who refused to allow the physician to extract it until he learned whether the arrow had been shot by an archer of his own caste. That guy, obviously, is going to die, said the Buddha. So will you, if you waste your time with stupid questions. That's a good rhetorical trick, and has since shut up generations of philosophers, but I never heard that they got enlightened.

Of course, that's another thing the Buddhists talk a lot about among themselves, but never with outsiders. Who is enlightened? Among themselves, there's lots of mutual back-scratching until the competition for students gets hot. Then they let their hair down. They admit that the titles are all inflated, and no one on the market right now can teach you much of anything deep, because they don't know it. But over here, on the other side of the wall, they claim there's lots of enlightened people, some in Tibet. And of course, the really great teachers "aren't interested in teaching Westerners." (Said Alan Wallace)

If you take that deeper, and you ask, "What does it mean to be enlightened?" you encounter even more division. People in the press and publishing ask what "Buddhists" believe. Well hell, they believe more crazy shit than Christians, Moslems, and Scientologists all put together, and of course they're not much more in agreement. Buddhists have blasted each other as heretics since the early days, and taken it quite as seriously as Rome took the Christian problem during that backward pre-Christian Italian era. The Gelukpa takeover of the Kagyu monasteries using Mongolian thugs, and their subsequent ascendance to theocratic dominance, is a good example.

The Nyingmas, of course, remember very well that the Gelukpas have been praying to Shugden for their demise for centuries, and that their Dzogchen doctrine was a prosecutable heresy in their homeland, and the only reason the Geluks don't string them up right now for defiling the Dharma is because this isn't Tibet, and the Geluks need to make nice.

Tibetan Buddhists disagree bitterly on what constitutes the path to Enlightenment, and on what Enlightenment is. But again these disputations are never heard beyond the Wall of Silence. Instead they stick to the positive, and allow the Dalai Lama's bland formulations of goodness to pass for the doctrine itself. In truth, of course, most Tibetan Buddhists who are at all well-initiated are looking for much stronger stuff than the Dalai Lama's one-size-fits-all feel-goodism.

And what does the average fool Buddhist do with this plethora of clashing opinions? Do they try to sort it out? Do they compare doctrines, ask their teachers why they disagree with other Buddhists, and demand some explanation of the purported unity behind the obvious multiplicity? No, they don't. They blame themselves for lacking faith, and they numb themselves with service and activity, and/or try to silence that dreadful "monkey mind" that gives them no rest. And all they really want is a banana.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:36 am

THE VESTIBULAR SYSTEM, by Charles Carreon

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Physical and Mental Equilibrium Founded on Healthy Operation of the Vestibular System

Thanks to the operation of the Vestibular System, located in the semicircular canals of the inner ear, we are able to orient ourselves in three-dimensions. The sense of equilibrium allows us to walk, swim, fly and move about, retaining a sense of orientation with respect to the sky above, the earth below, as well as knowing what is in back of us, what is in front, and how parts of our body are oriented with respect to the rest of our body. Meditators can develop awareness of the flow of neural information being piped directly to the perceiving brain from the tiny cilia that serve as “angular accelerometers” detecting all movement in the head, keeping our vision from blurring by making tiny adjustments in our eye muscles to maintain a static focus on the objects of attention even when our heads are in motion. Furthermore, when a person’s body settles into stillness, the vestibular system continues producing "resting discharge activity" to indicate the lack of movement stimuli. It is hypothesized that this “resting discharge activity” signals to the perceiving mind that it is safe from threat and may settle into rest. It is further hypothesized that the activity of meditation may be simplified by realizing the concrete, physiological benefit of consciously attending to this “stillness signal,” thus generating a feedback loop that allows for deeper and deeper stillness in both body and mind. Quotes from scientific literature to sustain this hypothesis are provided below.

The following quote is from http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hb ... chlea.html

The semicircular canals are the body's balance organs, detecting acceleration in the three perpendicular planes. These accelerometers make use of hair cells similar to those on the organ of Corti, but these hair cells detect movements of the fluid in the canals caused by angular acceleration about an axis perpendicular to the plane of the canal. Tiny floating particles aid the process of stimulating the hair cells as they move with the fluid. The canals are connected to the auditory nerve.


The following information on the primacy of the Vestibular Nerve as the first to develop in the foetal body is quoted from Kay Hogan's online essay "The Ear and The Alexander Technique" at http://www.kayhogan.com/articles_ear.htm, quoting Hannaford, C. (2002), Awakening The Child Heart. Jamilla Nur: Hawaii.

Nerves myelinate (fully develop) in order of their importance for survival. The first cranial nerve to myelinate in utero is the vestibular nerve (sensory nerve with some motor nerve functions) whose primary functions are balance and energy. A two-month-old embryo hears and reacts to sound by opening and closing the arms and legs, these movements are the Moro reflex. "The newborn hears and moves in rhythm to the mother's voice in the first minutes of life. There are no random movements; every movement of the newborn has meaning, with particular movements being linked to particular sounds. For example, with a sudden loud sound the baby will throw out its arms and legs in a Moro Reflex. In response to his mother's voice, he will turn toward her. Studies done using high-speed film show that newborns and infants have a complete and individual repertoire of body movements that precisely synchronize with syllables or sub-syllables of a speaker's voice. This important matching of movement to words, or "entrainment", starts in utero at about four and a half months and leads to full development of the vestibular systems and the ability to language successfully."

The Vestibular Nerve begins to myelinate in utero by registering the movement of the fetus and its environment (mother). After birth the vestibular system is necessary for the infant's survival in the new environment, which is gravity. The vestibular nerve is involved in the sense of equilibrium, maintenance of posture and muscle tone. The other purpose of the newly myelinated nerve of the hearing organ is the electrical charge that the brain receives from sound and that is crucial for brain development. In these early stages, it is the mother's voice that the baby has entrained to, and in particular to the high frequencies that are most enriching for the infants' brain development. "We instinctively talk to babies with a higher voice, called "Parentese", which we now know energizes the baby's brain, making it more alert to all sensory input and able to take in specific patterns and rhythms, thus aiding leaning."

MOTOR NERVES MYLINATE BEFORE SENSORY NERVES

It is the motor nerves that myelinate before the sensory nerves, meaning that movement awakens the senses. We need movement and that includes sound in order to sense or perceive our environment and ourselves. Movement is crucial to learning in both the internal environment and external environment. Both sound and movement are crucial to the early developmental reflexes.


From The Origins of Human Love and Violence, by James W. Prescott, Ph.D. • Institute of Humanistic Science, from Pre- and Perinatal Psychology Journal, Volume 10, Number 3: Spring 1996, pp. 143-188, available online at http://www.violence.de/prescott/pppj/article.html

[M]y quest to understand the origins of human love and violence was partly rooted in my doctoral training in developmental neuropsychology and psychophysiology at McGill University, Montreal, P.Q. Canada where I was made acutely aware of the extraordinary importance that the early sensory-social environment has upon brain development and behavior. The pioneering studies at McGill in the 1950s and 1960s documented that social isolation rearing of puppies results in not only aberrant adult emotional-social behaviors but also in abnormal brain development and functioning.

***

In 1966, I joined the newly formed NICHD where I created the Developmental Behavioral Biology Program (NICHD) to establish basic research programs on brain-behavioral development. During my tenure at the NICHD (1966-1980), I formulated a novel developmental brain-behavioral theory of emotional-social regulation to explain the pathological depression and violence that results from maternal-social deprivation or the social isolation rearing of infant animals.

***

I redefined "maternal-social deprivation" as a special case of Somatosensory Affectional Deprivation (SAD) and identified somesthetic processes (body touch) and vestibular-cerebellar processes (body movement) as the two critical emotional senses that define the sensory neuropsychological foundations for maternal-infant affectional bonding. Sensory deprivation in the other sensory systems (vision, hearing, smell and taste) do not result in the maternal-social deprivation or SAD syndrome).

***

My reconceptualization of the maternal-social deprivation syndrome which involved cerebellar-limbic-frontal lobe brain functions was made possible by the pioneering studies of Mason (1968) and Mason and Berkson (1975) who demonstrated that the isolation rearing of infant monkeys on a "swinging mother" surrogate (vestibular-cerebellar stimulation) prevented the development of the classic maternal-social (SAD) syndrome. This behavioral study opened the "vestibular-cerebellar" gate to brain structures and processes not previously implicated in these emotional-social disorders and represents, in my view, a scientific study of such importance that is matched only by the original contributions of the Harlows. The implications of the Mason and Berkson "swinging mother surrogate" study for human development is profound but, unfortunately, remains unappreciated despite the fact that its dramatic effects can be seen in the Time Life documentary film "Rock a Bye Baby" (Dokecki 1973) and which has been one of the most successful documentaries of Time Life.

It is important to emphasize that in terms of SAD theory, the different sensory-emotional systems of the body provide the neuropsychological foundations for different psychological states. Specifically, the vestibular-cerebellar sensory system provides the primary neuropsychological foundation for "Basic Trust"; the somesthetic (touch) sensory system provides the primary neuropsychological foundation for "Affection"; and the olfactory (smell) sensory system provides the primary neuropsychological foundation for "Intimacy". In normal development these emotional-sensory systems are combined in rich patterns of complex sensory stimulation which results in the development of a "neurointegrative" brain where "Basic Trust", "Affection" and "Intimacy" are integrated with one another to form an emotional brain gestalt that can be called "Love"– long before the infant can understand the spoken or written word which is mediated by the auditory and visual cognitive senses.


The following information is from http://www.medicine.mcgill.ca/physio/cu ... vest1.html

The vestibular system is phylogenetically the oldest part of the inner ear. It is situated in the petrous part of the temporal bone, in close proximity to the cochlea. The vestibular system responds to movement of the head relative to space and gravity, using inertial-sensing receptors which are activated by forces arising from the acceleration of mass in accordance with Newton’s law: Force = Mass X Acceleration.

In order to determine the absolute movement of a body in three dimensional space, reliable information is required about movement in each of the 6 "degrees of freedom" permitted in three dimensional space, i.e. three translation or straight lines (up-down, left-right, fore-aft), and three rotational (in one horizontal, and two vertical planes at right angles to each other) movements. There is one vestibular system on each side of the head, in close approximation to the cochlea.

Each side of this bilateral system consists of two types of sensors:

1. the two otolith organs (the saccule and utricle) , which sense linear movement (translation),
2. a set of three semicircular canals, arranged at right angles to each other, sensing rotation movement in three planes.

Introduction to the Vestibular System

The Otolith Organs


The utricle and the saccule are two sac-like structures each of which contains a specialized region (the macula) which is made up of a ciliated sensory epithelium (the vestibular hair cells). In humans, the hair cells in the vestibular system differ somewhat from those in the auditory system, in that each vestibular cell, in addition to having a number of thin stereo-cilia, also has one thicker longer kino-cilium positioned at one end of the cell’s hair-bearing surface.

The hair cells of the vestibular system also exhibit a constant "resting discharge activity" even in the absence of a stimulus. Thus, stimulation is sensed by the central nervous system as a change in this resting, "spontaneous" discharge rate. The cilia which emerge from the hair cells are embedded in a gelatinous matrix containing solid CaCO3 crystals (the otoconia) which overlies the cells. During linear acceleration, the crystals (being denser than the surrounding fluid) will tend to be left behind due to their inertia. It has been demonstrated that the resultant bending of the cilia causes cell excitation when the bending is toward the kino-cilium (with a resultant increase in the firing frequency of the innervated afferent sensory fibres of the VIII th nerve), and inhibition when away from the kino-cilium (with a resultant decrease in the firing frequency of the innervated afferent sensory fibres of the VIIIth nerve).

Since they are sensitive to acceleration, the otolith organs detect the direction and magnitude of gravity, as well as transient linear accelerations due to movement (for example: tilting the head produces a transient linear acceleration which is reflected in changes in the firing frequency of afferent fibres innervating the sensory cells).

The Functions of the Vestibular System

The information from the vestibular apparatus is used in three ways:

To provide a subjective sensation of movement and/or displacement in 3-dimensional space.

For example, the hair cells of the utricle provide a sensation of head tilt based on the direction in which the cilia are bent by the gravitational force. When the head is tilted in the direction of polarity of a given cell, it depolarizes and excites the afferent fiber. Alternatively, when the head is tilted in the opposite direction, the same cell hyperpolarizes and inhibits the afferent fiber.

To maintain upright body posture (balance). A variety of reflexes of the limb musculature, are mediated by activation of the otolith organs and semicircular canals. When the vestibular system is activated these reflexes result in the stabilization of the head's position in space (vestibulospinal and otolith-spinal reflexes).

To control the muscles that move the eyes, so that in spite of the changes in head position which occur during normal activities such as walking and running, the eyes remain stabilized on a point in space . The eye movements which are generated by activation of the vestibular system are called vestibulo-ocular reflexes and are discussed in greater detail on the next page.

The Vestibulo-Ocular Reflex

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Unblurred vision is only possible if the eye is stationary (fixed) with respect to a viewed object. The vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR) is an important mechanism by which unblurred vision is made possible during head movements that are generated during everyday activities such as walking and running. For example, if the head is turned to the left, this reflex causes the eyes to move to the right (i.e. in the opposite direction of the head movement). The oppositely directed eye movement occurs at the same velocity as the head movement, and therefore generates an eye movement which keeps our line of sight fixed on the same point in visual space both during and following the movement.

During short head movements, these compensatory eye movements remain well within the mechanical limits of eye rotation. However during large amplitude head rotation, the eye can reach its limit of excursion long before the head movement is completed. Consequently, during this condition, an additional feature is added to the VOR: when the eye reaches an extreme position, it is rapidly flicked back to a new starting position. From this new starting position, the eye then continues a new cycle of compensatory movement during continuing head movement. The resulting "saw tooth" pattern of slow compensatory/ rapid resetting eye movements (slow phases and quick phases respectively) are referred to as vestibular nystagmus.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:39 am

"THEY'RE ALL DIABOLICAL BOZOS!", by Charles Carreon

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The Dickies are a classic of the LA rock scene who repeatedly opened acts for The Ramones when we lived there during the mid eighties through nineties, especially for the gigs out in the Valley. Their big hit was "Manny, Moe and Jack," yes, as in the three fraternal founders of Pep Boys Auto Parts, a southland tradition. If you ever hear this song, you will notice it sounds a lot like Killer Klowns, but the lyrics are a little more down to earth:

The Dickies in Manny Moe & Jack wrote:

Once you're inside
they won't take you for a ride
they got a good deal for you and your automobile
for the right price
they will sell you fuzzy dice
and leather hand grips for your steering whee-al


Killer Klowns came out on an EP with just three other songs. Two of them are totally forgettable, but "Booby Trap" is a classic, with spooky lyrics that complement the Krazy Karnival Kalliope sound of Killer Klowns with a little Transylvanian Rapture. This song always reminded me of Elvyra, Queen of the Dark, another LA original.

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The Dickies in Booby Trap wrote:

Estelle is a vampire ...
She has a novel way of leaving her calling card.
Sing along by the campfire,
She'll leave her mark while stealing your heart.

Forget her lies about not drinking wine,
You love though you're gonna turn blue.
Her madness grows like the thorns on a rose...
I'd wear a cross if I were you.

If you want to date her,
You better get her home before she sees the first light of day,
But sooner or later
The best laid plans of mice and men go astray

She's the kinda girl who'll put your head in a whirl --
She's bound by traditional victorian rules,
The daughter of the devil and the mother of hell,
I'd let her alone if I were you.

Don't look back!
It's a trap!
It's a fact!
It's a booby trap!
Booby trap!
Booby boob-booby trap!

She'll get your love like a hand in a glove,
The fangs of a bat and the heart of a dove...
From hell below to heaven above,
I wouldn't let her in if I were you.

Don't look back!
It's a trap!
It's a fact!
It's a booby trap!
Booby trap!
Booby boob-booby trap!


One night we saw The Ramones at the Country Club out in the Valley. No booze 'cause they'd just gotten popped for underage sales, so I went out to the place next door to grab a brew after the Dickies finished their set and before the Ramones came on. The bass player was having a burger in this place. Still wearing his dress from onstage. He looked at me like he thought I was interesting and displayed his left shoulder in a provocative way. I think we chatted a little but I can't remember. Looked like a fun guy, sorta.

Cheers
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:40 am

TIBETAN TWO-STEP, SHUFFLE & SLIDE, by Charles Carreon

(Perform while wearing seersucker suit and straw boater hat with ukelele accompaniment.)

There's a sucker born every minute
In the good ole USA,
I got here through religion, and here I'm gonna stay.

Just stand right there
Don't scare the crowd,
I've got wisdom teachings, so gather 'round.

It's true you've heard tales of monastery life
How it's filled with depravity and extra wives
But where we gonna go? It's cold outside.

The spiritual path is hard to travel,
But in an antique Rolls
The miles just unravel.

So whaddaya expect a guru to do
But pass the crumpets,
Wouldn't you?

So listen up kids,
Not many can boast
That they told you the truth before they ate your toast

And before you say no, remember first
I'm the best of what's left
And you could do a lot worse!
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:42 am

TIM LEARY, STARFLEET COMMANDER, by Charles Carreon

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Timothy Leary famously blew his cranium on mushrooms in an experience that he recites in "Your Brain Is God" as follows:

"Many years ago, on a sunny afternoon in a Cuernavaca garden, I ate seven so-called sacred mushrooms given to me by a scientist from the University of Mexico. During the next five hours, I was whirled through an experience which was, above all and without question, the deepest religious-philosophic experience of my life. And it was totally electric, cellular scientific, cinematographic."


That experience opened the door to a lifelong search for truth, beauty, and the secret of human existence that Leary confidently proclaims to have solved in "Your Brain Is God." Leary embraces the Gaia hypothesis, seeing the biosphere as a thin bubble of self-creating order that generates ever-more complex and capable living organisms. Leary promises human fulfillment for those who master the "Eight Crafts of God," which might be thought of as harmonizing all human energies into a single harmonious spectrum of being. Of course, psychedelic yoga, the practice of one LSD session per week, is inseparable from making progress toward skill in plying God-craft.

Leary's vision has historic content, as all scientific visions do. Think of the Grand Canyon, of the tales of physicists, about worlds infinitely distant in both space and time, visible through powerful telescopes. So also the LSD voyager often experiences the grand sweep of history, recapitulating, as Leary would have it, the long journey of life up from the primeval swamps, through amphibious and reptilian and mammalian life forms, until we became game-playing simians. So for Leary it is clear that we exist, this universe is in process, human life and all life is on a unified trajectory with the general flow of the universe, and within that flow there are optimal and suboptimal outcomes for living beings resulting from our level of consciousness.

Tim is big on what I like to call the tautological nature of the mind, the tendency of the mind to reflect whatever appears within it. Tim talked about having good set and setting. He talked about the outer set, the difference between being at Esalen, or in a seedy motel. He also described the inner set, harder to change, which is simply the mental disposition you've been developing since you were born, probably before. Set and setting condition your experience. Tim’s lifework was creating set and setting for ecstatic experiences, which he thinks you can get the vast majority of the time for the majority of people.

Tim differed in this regard from other LSD therapists, somebody like Stan Grof, who calls LSD a non-specific neural amplifier that allows you to hear your entire subconscious mind sometimes singing, sometimes shrieking, at high volume. A high-dose trip with Grof could be like lancing the pus out of a painfully engorged ego. Unbelievably scary, and very relieving. By contrast, Leary never designed a philosophy of cathartic tripping. He was an ecstatic revelationist who believed the best use of LSD is to induce ego loss. This ego loss is very far from a state of nonexistence. Rather, it is direct connection without mediation to the source of the all-creative universal mind. From the place of egolessness, each individual can practice the eight God crafts.

Set and setting, says Leary, perfectly mirror one's inner state. Dead people live in dingy cities, he says. When you realize, through LSD practice, that you need to be in a vital, wholesome, esthetically pleasing environment, you'll put yourself in one. So you have to be ready to make those changes. He's seen it time and again. People don't want to make those changes, they stop taking their LSD. Leary doesn’t mention that there are economic and other penalties for following the dictates of your increasingly-sensitized God-mind. Penalties that he of course paid when he was in prison for a half a joint. He puts it this way: “To continue to use LSD, you must generate around you an ever-widening ring of ‘tuned-in’ actions. You must hook up your inner power to a life of expanding intelligence.” Most people, the large majority of the 5,000 who undertook LSD yoga with him, “could not harness their activated energies to a more harmonious game.” Tim’s yoga, however initially attractive, appears to produce as few adepts as the old systems. But every guru can get grumpy.

Leary hazards a guess that The Tibetan Book of the Living, the first trip-manual he produced with Richard Alpert, introduced more people to Buddhism than any mainstream publication, while noting that few "Buddhist professionals" would admit this. Leary describes how the popularity of the book became a problem: "The Tibetan Book of the Living , our first venture in updating old neurological-trip maps, was so successful we became alarmed. Thousands of people began using the Tibetan jargon of Bardos, and a definite fad-trend toward Buddhism was developing. To head off this Oriental renaissance, we quickly sought another, less parochial text for describing and guiding brain astronauts. The advantage of the Tao Te Ching was that this Taoist text was almost content-free. There are no pious monks, shaved heads, red hats, yellow hats, orange robes, or specific levels of heaven, purgatory, and hell in the Tao Te Ching."

Leary’s hostility to an “Oriental renaissance” taking root in his psychedelic movement discloses more ambivalence than real hostility, however. Earlier in the book he regards Hinduism as the nearest neighbor of his own philosophy, and lumps Jainism and Buddhism together as “life-affirming philosophies” that will make possible the “Scientific Paganism of the 21st Century”. Then, in the book’s last chapter, “A Holy Mess,” he recalls that the “religious metaphor” for psychedelic experience “boomed.” A “holy mess” resulted from telling people that they were gods, to which “only the young listened,” causing us all to look to Eastern holy men for guidance. As Leary builds up speed, he begins enjoying tossing a little invective. He’s talking about real people that he can remember:

“It worked because it was so seductive. There was a lot to learn back-East – the barefoot grace, the body-control sinuosity of yoga, the wiry elastic mind-trick of seeing everything from the standpoint of eternity. The ultimate cool of fatalism. The junky-hindu grin of pompous, self-satisfied passivity. The comforting babble of mantra nonsense-syllables. New colorful, bizarre Hindu Lord’s Prayers to monkey-mimic.”

Having gotten up some steam, Leary continues:

“Oriental philosophy is profoundly pessimistic, cynical, stoic, and passive. Before modern scientific technology expanded the scope of human perception there was, indeed, no place to go and nothing new. The same old body cycle – circles of birth, aging and death. Stay detached from the outer world, because there is nothing you can do about the relentless leveling entropy of age.”


Here, Leary ascribes the dead-end view of earthly life that is characteristic of Buddhist and Hindu philosophy to a lack of scientific insight. Examining the other side of the tautological equation may reveal another truth, however – that the adoption of a dead-end view of earthly life stifles the development of scientific insight. Either way, of course, the Orientalist view that one should “stop the world and get off” seems ill-adapted to humanity’s future, which places us in control of spaceship earth, in control of our genetic future, and powerfully in need of a vision that accommodates wholesome, unlimited growth.
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