Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Identified as a trouble maker by the authorities since childhood, and resolved to live up to the description, Charles Carreon soon discovered that mischief is most effectively fomented through speech. Having mastered the art of flinging verbal pipe-bombs and molotov cocktails at an early age, he refined his skills by writing legal briefs and journalistic exposes, while developing a poetic style that meandered from the lyrical to the political. Journey with him into the dark caves of the human experience, illuminated by the torch of an outraged sense of injustice.

Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 8:56 am


I am incredibly proud of our Coast Guard
I want to thank
the commanders
and I want to thank
the troops
congratulate the governors for being leaders
you're doing a heck of a job

We're going to spend a lot of time saving lives
Thank you for zero tolerance
We're going to work hard to get it
Get food ... food ... food moving

We're going to spend a lot of time focusing
We're going to save lives and stabilize
Chaos is fantastic
Like it was before
Trent Lott's house
A fantastic house
I'm sitting on the porch

I'm down, I'm down, I'm down
With folks

Want to say something about the compassion
Love yourselves
My dad and Bill Clinton are going to raise money
Faith based groups are responding
Opportunities to help later
Now save lives and stabilize

Thank you, Brownie

My attitude is not exactly right
I've come down to assure people
I'm not looking forward to this trip.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 8:56 am

ST. FRANCIS, by Charles Carreon

St. Francis is the man, it occurs to me, and Zeffirelli's movie, "Brother Sun-Sister Moon", is an initiatory film that communicates the raw appeal of voluntary poverty, perfect innocence, and naive acceptance of the Saviour's promises of everlasting life. Why lay up treasure where moth and rust do corrupt and thieves break in and steal? Why indeed? St. Francis' jubilation is palpable in Zeffirelli's film, and for those of us vulnerable to its spell, sparks a moment of holy reflection -- How wonderful might it not be, in reality, to abandon concern with what you will eat, or wear, or where you will sleep? Well, the answer is, if you can get a nice shrine renovation project going, and serve the poor as your first concern, then pretty soon you don't even have to worry about your own self. Once we get off our high horse, Francis promises, we will be, to our surprise, supported, provided for. Francis took Jesus' challenge to aid the sick and suffering at face value -- spending time trying to make a dent in human misery just by doing what he could. Of course, that is exactly the most important ingredient for a better world. People who just start, based on a principle -- people come first.

You may ask of course whether belief in the Savior isn't an essential element of Francis' motivational basis -- there is that little matter of eternal life. Suppose you don't buy the God aspect of his thing? Could you still do the voluntary poverty thing, or would you lack the motivation, and fall into selfish egoism regardless? While believing in God is certainly no insurance against developing selfish egoism, belief in a happy afterlife provides a helpful sweetener for an otherwise austere ethic of self-abnegation and other-service. The question of course is whether that can be legitimate, for us today. Can we really believe in heaven because Jesus said, "In my Father's house are many mansions," and "be not afraid, I go to prepare a place for you"? That seems a bit of a questionable basis. But could a modern neo-Franciscan believe in the deathless nature of human awareness-intelligence? Sure, why not? I can't imagine seriously trying to buttress my beliefs by invoking the formula, "Jesus said so." Nevertheless, I personally intuit that awareness-intelligence is deathless. It just feels like it. Of course I could be wrong. But since I believe I'm right, it provides the perfect complement to the belief that we should stop worrying about stuff and start caring for people -- somehow it'll all work out wonderfully in the far future. Today, take care of your fellow human.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:01 am

by Charles Carreon
December, 2003

In 2002 Shambhala Sun, the shameful house organ of the Vajradhatu mafia, published a pathetic softball interview of phony tulku Steven Seagal. The interviewer in "Steven Seagal Speaks" feeds Seagal one easy question after another, and never once follows up with a pointed interrogation. The interviewer points out none of the obvious contradictions in Seagal's flow of blather. I've read more incisive interviews of Miss America.

There's a stink of piety and obeisance to the questions, which are spiked with Trungpa-esque phrases like "finding your seat," which give it that "insider" flavor. (See Trungpa's poem to Osel Tendzin urging him to "find his seat." Tendzin famously misfired while enjoying his seat, causing one of his students, and the student's girlfriend, to die of AIDS. But he had such a sunny disposition in the face of tragedy, that he is quoted as saying, "Ladies and gentlemen, the point is not to live as long as possible." Shambhala Sun has never covered the topic of Tendzin's murders, imposing a complete blackout on this topic. Although Tendzin is venerated by the Shambhaloids, who have reinvented him as a teacher with a "provocative" style, there is no information about him on the Shambhala Sun website, except for that one quote above, drawn from a doctor-devotee's essay.

No, instead of real information about their crash-and-burn gurus, the Shambhala Sun is working to shore up the reputation of Steven Seagal, who dropped out of the sky like the meteor in David Spade's hilarious sendup of redneck life, "Joe Dirt." .The Seagal interview is by screenwriter Stanley Weiser ("Wall Street" 1989). His Seagal interview is so soft-brained , I thought maybe he wrote "The Karate Kid." It must be the air in Los Angeles; either that, or the number of gurus that swing through the town.

Whatever the cause, Weiser takes Seagal seriously, as only a fellow show-business person can. Willing suspension of disbelief is the key here. Seagal swings from one contradictory statement to another. First he says he was born with a spiritual bent, and that he's on earth only to do good. Then he admits he suffered delusions of grandeur when he was young, and now he understands things better. But his "better" understanding is the same one he had when he was young -- that he needs to achieve great spiritual wisdom to benefit human beings. He says he's meditated a long time, but then admits tantra confuses him. He says he wouldn't give a bribe to be called a tulku, but admits making large donations to religious organizations. He claims he keeps his donations secret, and complains that the press hasn't publicized his generosity. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's let the man speak for himself. All quotes are accurate, though they have been rearranged in order to highlight contradictions.

SEAGAL wrote:
Q: There are the recent reports that Penor Rinpoche has recognized you as a tulku. Is that correct?
A: ... Well, first of all, this a recognition that people have been telling me about for more than twenty years, people who have known me in the dharma for a long time, long, long before Penor Rinpoche ever formalized this.

In other words, "Yes, and it's long overdue."

SEAGAL wrote:
I was born with a serious spiritual consciousness and for many years studied different paths.

"You see, I've been spiritually advanced from birth, like all tulkus."

SEAGAL wrote:
I was confused in my youth: I thought that if I could spiritually feed myself to levels of great spiritual attainment then I could do greater things in the world and it would be good for me and therefore good for everyone else.

"I used to be impressed with my inborn wisdom-talent. Now I am beyond any delusions involving self-importance."

SEAGAL wrote:
I am here on this Earth for one thing and that is to see if I can somehow serve humankind and ease the suffering of others.

"Like all of the Great Ones, my mission is healing."

SEAGAL wrote:
It was something that I had always kept secret, and in fact denied.

"I have tried to hide my light from the world, actively concealing my divinity."

SEAGAL wrote:
So if I denied it then, why would I bribe people for it now?

"For that matter, why would I now argue in favor of my divinity when I have in the past denied it?"

SEAGAL wrote:
I have traditionally donated large sums of money to many different religious organizations ... in secret, but ... the press believes there is no profit in reporting good deeds.

"You will find no record of my donations anywhere, both because I hate publicizing good deeds, and because those damned reporters hate me."

SEAGAL wrote:
[P]eople ...said to me that I am an incarnate lama, or tulku.

"You know, it's just something you get used to."

SEAGAL wrote:
I was originally introduced to ... a handful of lamas who had come over from Tibet [who] were sick and had been tortured. [W]hen the Khampas were still fighting the Chinese and the CIA was helping them, and because of the severe repression of the Tibetan people, I wanted to get involved. ... it is probably best if we don’t get into that. ...I don’t want to appear to be a dangerous revolutionary person.

"I supported violent resistance, but that's top secret, and bad for my image. Nobody understands what it's like to be a secret agent bodhisattva."

SEAGAL wrote:
These were the years when my interest in Tibetan Buddhism flourished, but my involvement in any of the spiritual endeavors and training remained my personal business—not secret as some of the other things were, but just private.

"I keep secrets, which are dark things I will not talk about. I also keep things private, about which I am happy to tell you, because I must use them as evidence of my long-time connection with all things Tibetan."

SEAGAL wrote:
I very much wanted to be invisible in the dharma community, for a lot of reasons. Only in the last few months have I come out of the closet.

"You won't be able to verify any of my claims, because like I said, it was private, because I didn't want the attention. Now I want the attention."

SEAGAL wrote:
Penor Rinpoche basically recognized me as Kyung-drak Dorje, who was the reincarnation of the translator Yudra Nyingpo.

"He didn't recognize me as Yudra Nyingpo, but he 'basically' recognized me as this other guy, who was his reincarnation."

SEAGAL wrote:
From the time that I started going to India and meditating I did start getting memories [of past lives] that were fairly unclear.

"Do not try to get any details out of me."

SEAGAL wrote:
Just a few days ago ... a lama ... said to me ... "you have a very good imprint of many strong past lives, and therefore your realization will come more swiftly than some people’s."
Q: What did he mean by that?
A: I can’t really explain it.

"Many lamas kiss my ass. Perhaps they have heard about my secret donations."

SEAGAL wrote:
Of course, as you practice longer, you will develop some different siddhis. But none of them really matters.

"For example, I am a huge man who could break your head with my fist. It's not important."

SEAGAL wrote:
... I have consistently said ... I don’t believe it is very important who I was in my last lives, I think it is important who I am in this life...

"Let's talk about something I know about, okay?"

SEAGAL wrote:
I am not a highly realized being, I am not a great lama, I don’t have any great practice.

"All of the Great Ones deny being great. I fit the mold."

SEAGAL wrote:
I am a very low person just trying to get to first base and the most basic practice of a bodhisattva. I am starting humble memorizations, meditations, and prayers.

"Of course, you already heard about the 27 years, the Tibetans recognizing me as divine, and my special talents in meditation, so you know this is just more of my humble schtick."

SEAGAL wrote:
I have been doing serious meditation in my own pitiful way for probably twenty-seven years.

"Have another helping!"

SEAGAL wrote:
Hopefully [by sitting with Trichen Rinpoche and Penor Rinpoche] I will absorb some knowledge or wisdom....

"Name dropping really works with Tibetan Buddhists, so bombs away!"

SEAGAL wrote:
Whenever I get too esoteric into the realms of tantric stuff, I get a little bit lost.

"I just keep it simple. Like Elvis Costello said, 'What's so funny 'bout peace, love and understanding?'"

SEAGAL wrote:
[T]he great obstacle was just a lack of understanding of the way.

"So glad I'm over that obstacle!"

SEAGAL wrote:
[W]hen I was in Japan, people tried to deify me, and the reason I left there was that deification is truly a death trap.

"A total dead end."

SEAGAL wrote:
That is a reason why I kept my spiritual practice to myself in America.

"Once people realize you're divine, it's all over. They will deify you. Didn't want to make the same mistakes here, so I just laid low."

SEAGAL wrote:
I don’t think deification has been one of my biggest problems in life because I am lucky enough to have understood a long time ago what adoration and power really are about.

"I've just learned to take it in stride. I'm huge, I'm handsome, I'm rich. And on top of it all, I'm divine. The adulation is just part of the scene."

SEAGAL wrote:
I have given teachings recently. Always on Buddha’s teachings.

"If anyone will listen, I need the practice."

SEAGAL wrote:
When I walk into a room some people see a dog, some people see a cow. I am all of what they see. It is their perception.

"This sort of thing worked for Charlie Manson, why not for me? Just talk bullshit and let it roll."

SEAGAL wrote:
Buddhanature is in all of us, even in a mangy dog lying in the gutter with fleas. That dog is Buddha to me.

"I heard that some guy named Naropa saw his guru as a dog. I been thinkin' a lot about that."

SEAGAL wrote:
The Dalai Lama has said to me to concentrate on bodhicitta.

"He knows I make movies in which I kill lots of people."

SEAGAL wrote:
Q: The Dalai Lama gave you personal instructions about teaching?
A: I wouldn’t say he has given me personal instructions about teaching.

"Just had to ask that, didn't you?"

SEAGAL wrote:
I don’t really care what other people think of me or say about me.

"I swear I never think about it."

SEAGAL wrote:
Guru Rinpoche, the Lord Buddha and all the protectors, dakas and dakinis [give me solace].

"Blondes, bucks, flashy cars, all mean nothing to me. What I want is all stuff I can imagine in my head just as well without a dime in my pocket. In fact, I'm about to give away all my stuff, I'm feeling so solaced about it all."

SEAGAL wrote:
I want to be able to feed the children who are starving and sick in Tibet.

"But my arms aren't long enough."

SEAGAL wrote:
We are also trying recently to do something for people with eye problems in Tibet.

"That's me and some other people I can't mention."

SEAGAL wrote:
Acting is an art ... art is the mother of religion; by becoming one with ourselves and nature, one becomes one with god.

"This is my best shot at profundity. Watch that I don't drown."

SEAGAL wrote:
[A]rt imitates life and its function should be a perfect and accurate interpretation of the way life really is, in all of its emanations.

"I learned about emanations recently. I like to use the word, but maybe this isn't the best way."

SEAGAL wrote:
I am not saying that I am a great artist; I am probably a poor artist.

"It is fun to be honest sometimes."

SEAGAL wrote:
I am an artist trying to perfect his craft, but at the same time I do have feelings about violence.

"I am drowning. Please help me."

SEAGAL wrote:
I was under a contract with Warner Brothers I could not get out of, and what they wanted me for was the male action films.

"I agreed to kill people on film in exchange for millions, not realizing I would someday want to pose as a man of peace. By the time this tulku option opened up, I was stuck."

SEAGAL wrote:
I was offered extraordinary sums of money by other studios to do different types of movies and Warner Brothers would not let me.

"Yeah, like I was gonna do "Hamlet" for the BBC, and a special with the Muppets."

SEAGAL wrote:
Now that I’m out of that situation, ... the kinds of films I would really like to do ... are spiritual in nature and ... will lead people into contemplation and offer them joy.

"Yeah, I'm going to do a dinosaur special for Discovery Channel."

SEAGAL wrote:
I am grateful for the ability that I have on the screen to bring people happiness and joy and the ability that I will have in the future to hopefully bring people into the path of contemplation.

"People have a lot of frustrations, and when my character breaks every bone in a villain's body by slamming him against every protuberance on a late-model BMW, then shoves him into the trunk and pushes the Beamer off a high-rise parking structure, it releases those frustrations, and that gives people joy. Then they can consider the path of contemplation, and how they can only kick the shit out of their enemies if they stay calm, like me."

SEAGAL wrote:
I consider my worst enemies and my worst sufferings to be my greatest teachers, so there is always another side to these negative forces.

"So people like AmbuFortuna and Odysseus do not bother me at all. In fact, they are my greatest benefactors, because they show me how far I have to go."
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:01 am


The seminal sixties novel that ironically was taken up as a bible for group sex communes was probably written as a total joke by Robert Heinlein, who was not to my knowledge known for being a freakin’ hippie, and probably regarded it as a fitting reward for his cynicism that hippies would pay him to lampoon them. It was perhaps a case of the Devil not content with quoting scripture, setting out to write it himself. The scripture then took on a life of its own.

I am of course speaking of Stranger In A Strange Land, the life story of Valentine Michael Smith, whose exploits on planet earth began when he was repatriated to his parents’ home planet, after a growing up on Mars among the Martians. As the story begins, family values are uppermost in mind – the eight-human crew is composed of four married heterosexual couples. Haha, try writing that story today. It will be banned in San Francisco.

Heinlein’s Mars-voyagers lose radio contact right after they park in Mars orbit, and like the ancient Roanoke settlement, disappear. When the followup mission arrives on Mars, an eighteen-man expedition whose return was delayed for twenty five years by earthside wars, they find only young Valentine, the sole survivor, living among Martians on the planet’s surface under circumstances that Heinlein leaves to the broadest strokes of the imagination. As the Captain of the rescue mission says, the boy is more Martian than human, although of human ancestry.

Valentine knows things in a special way he learned from the Martians – he groks things. Heinlein simply substituted the kooky term “grok,” which sounds like a beer burp to me, for the meaning of another transitive verb with which we are all familiar – “dig.” So, saying “I grok what you are saying” became a hi-fi way of saying “I can dig that,” which became so passe it ultimately passed into common parlance.

Valentine, we realized as hippies, was a guru, a dispeller of darkness. He came to earth to teach, and forms an alliance with the avuncular Jubal Harshaw, a lawyer with a Quixotic agenda whose Machiavellian flair for coming out on top causes him to get in a little too deep in defense of Valentine’s interests.

Prophetic in mixing astrology and politics, and utterly eyes-open regarding the spin-control agenda that would become the hallmark of modern media, Heinlein’s work laid the paving-stones of a Yellow Brick Road leading to a hedonic paradise where money and sex were subordinate to the deeper unity of humanity expressed through the ritual of “sharing water.” The novel echoed through popular culture during the sixties and seventies. Graham Nash’s song, “Triad,” transforms the term “water brother,” drawn from the novel, into a scalding taunt in a song that elicits a woman’s assent to a ménage a trios: “Sister lovers, water brothers, and in time maybe others …” Yeah, maybe others, someone who can do the dishes!

Unfortunately, unless you organize a religious cult like Bubba Free John or David Brandt Berg, promiscuous sex doesn’t get the dishes done any better than monogamous sex, maybe even worse, but dishes are never mentioned in a Heinlein novel.

To read this book in the proper setting, take your sailboat into international waters, get some Panama Red marijuana, roll it in some kooky strawberry-flavored rolling papers, hang an India print on your bulkhead and a poster of Grace Slick over it, and have a cold glass of beer or Doctor Pepper handy to quench your thirst. Then imagine Jane Fonda is still young, and start reading.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:04 am

by Charles Carreon
October, 2003

TIDS: Tantra-Induced Delusional Syndrome


Taking clinical note of the increased manifestation of acute and chronic delusional ideation among practicioners of tantra, a new entry for DSM-V is proposed: Tantra-Induced Delusional Syndrome (“TIDS”). Currently, enthusiasm for tantra is high among mental health professionals seeking alternative analytical and therapeutic models, and critical awareness is correspondingly low. This article, authored not by a mental-health professional, but rather by an attorney with extensive experience with tantric lifestyles, focuses on the case histories of three American tantric teachers who manifested destructive delusional behavior. The article identifies the risk-promoting character of tantric doctrine as the etiological root of their pathology, considers how delusional pathology transfers to tantric students, and describes the social dynamics of guru-dominated communities as potential breeding grounds for self-reinforcing delusional behavior. The article proposes three types of TIDS, “Guru-side,” “Student-side,” and “Transitional,” and suggests treatment modalities.

Tantra, A Risk-Promoting Spiritual Path

Tantra originated in India during an indistinct time period in the second millennium B.C., as a spiritual style that infused virtually all Indian religions, including the Vedic, Jain and Buddhist traditions, with colorful, imaginative characteristics. Once tantra touches a spiritual path, it is irrevocably reshaped into a path that extols the virtues of risk-taking and focuses on attracting students with an appetite for drama and excitement. Buddhist tantra bears little similarity to the original teachings of the Buddha who was born in Lumbini, enlightened at Bodhgaya, and founded the world’s largest and most enduring monastic brotherhood. The original Buddhists engaged in simple meditation practices to clear the mind and still the passions, Tibetan “Vajrayana” Buddhists practice magical rituals in which they invoke a “tutelary deity” through the use of a “seed mantra” and cognize themselves as “emanations” of this divine being, residing in an alternate universe where all sounds are the divine mantra, and all thoughts are divine wisdom. Although the Buddha disclaimed guru status and advised his devotees to “work out their own salvation with diligence,” Vajrayana Buddhists venerate their gurus extravagantly, literally believing them to be infallible and more important than the historical Buddha.

While there are no doubt legitimate manifestations of tantra, it always proceeds on the basis of postulates, not on the basis of introspection or subjective observations. Several tantric postulates make the tantric path attractive to spiritual strivers:

• The nature of ordinary existence is divine;
• The divine nature is concealed by the passions;
• Wisdom is revealed by transmutation of the passions;
• The guru has the power to transmute the passions; and,
• Rejecting the guru’s grace is the path to self-destruction.

The passions referred to in these postulates are all emotional and intellectual distortions of “clear perception,” including the core attachment to one’s own self-identity. Thus, when presented to beginners as a dualistic, either-or approach to enlightenment, the door to dangerous misunderstandings is flung wide open. Ironically, the tantric path is often made more attractive to risk-takers by the outright declaration that it is dangerous, like a steep climb up a cliff, compared with the slow and steady ascent pursued by stodgier practicioners.

Teachers and Students Enable Each Other

In modern-day America, “tantra” is often taught by virtual neophytes encouraged by traditional tantric teachers eager to seed new soil with their doctrine. Presented with the opportunity to play the guru, many of these newly-minted give in to the opportunity to exploit their students, and thus fall victim to the first danger of which serious tantric teachers give warning – the seduction of worldly power. Students who start off as bohemian rebels and non-conformists easily fall under the spell of tantric teachers who strut like fast-buck artists, adopt tough-guy personas, and exude an air of the-devil-may-care. Ironically, they may soon find themselves in the clutches of a psychology familiar to habitués of the bondage and domination scene.

Modern tantric teachers set about magnetizing a “mandala of students” who find their own individual reasons to adopt and spread the belief that they have established contact with a genuine tantric guru. Once a sufficient critical mass of students adopts this belief, it sets in motion a whirlpool of self-reinforcing behavior that exerts the psychological gravitational force of a black hole, sucking in large numbers of vulnerable souls. The community of Student-side TIDS sufferers reinforce each others’ mental enslavement through a shared, self-perpetuating delusion. Mid-level managers of the community primarily suffer from Transitional TIDS, a tense condition alternating between pride at being a community insider and anxious fear of exposure and humiliation. At the apex of this pyramid of misery sits the proliferator of the scheme, immersed in the psychotic pleasure of Guru-side TIDS.

Guru-side TIDS

In this article, which is but a preliminary foray into a promising field of diagnostic research, three case studies provide the basis for our hypothesis that Guru-side TIDS is a particularized psychological disorder -- Thomas Rich (Osel Tendzin), Catherine Burroughs (Jetsunma), and Franklin Jones (Adi Da Samraj). As these cases reveal, Guru-side TIDS is definitively a predatory, antisocial pathology that sometimes assumes criminal proportions and leads to devastating consequences.

Thomas Rich

Rich’s ascent to the status of Tantric guru was facilitated by his own tantric teacher, the once-legendary enfant terrible of Tibetan Buddhism, Chogyam Trungpa. Trungpa, the author of “Born In Tibet,” and many other books, was enthroned in early childhood as the Eleventh Trungpa Tulku of Surmang Monastery in a remote region of Tibet. Trungpa established the Vajradhatu organization in Boulder, Colorado, and prior to his death, pronounced Rich to be his Vajra Regent, to rule in his stead after Trungpa’s death and until the birth of the Twelfth incarnation of Trungpa Tulku.

Trungpa himself had been a famous drunkard and womanizer, as well as a talented poet and magnetic personality. Rich attempted to behave similarly. Tragically, Rich suffered not only from Guru-side TIDS, but also from AIDS. Not long after Trungpa’s death, he embarked on a series of sexual escapades and engaged in unprotected sex with several students. The reason? Due to TIDS-caused delusions, Tendzin believed that his bodily fluids did not transmit the disease. As a result at least one student and his female partner died of the lethal virus.

The conduct of Rich’s devoted students was equally reprehensible and casts a harsh light on the behavior of Transitional TIDS victims, the middle-managers of the dysfunctional Vajradhatu dynasty. Although many of Trungpa’s closest students were writers and artists, including the renowned poet Alan Ginsberg, and the Vajradhatu had its own newspaper, The Vajradhatu Sun, the entire matter of the AIDS deaths was hushed up, and never discussed openly by the cult leaders. Rich’s personal criminal misconduct was covered up, and legal protections against lawsuits by the victims were adopted in a corporate reorganization that downplayed Trungpa’s legacy and changed the name of the cult from Vajradhatu to Shambhala. In her biography, Trungpa’s wife has claimed Trungpa regretted appointing Rich his Regent, but failed to take action to disempower him. Since Trungpa, decimated by alcoholism, was barely able to relieve himself without assistance at the end of his life, it is not surprising that he was unable to disarm the time bomb he’d unleashed on his students. A man named Patrick Sweeney continues to gnaw the cud of the disgraced Regent, claiming to be his “dharma heir,” and operating the Satdharma group under those questionable auspices.

Catherine Burroughs

Catherine Burroughs began her career as a garden-variety psychic medium who purported to “channel” the spirits of wisdom teachers who had long ago departed this earth. Operating from her suburban lair near Washington, D.C., Burroughs tapped the manic energy that drives the over-achieving technocrats and hyperactive communicators who swarm through the bureaucratic warrens of the nation’s capital. Gifted with a knack for giving orders, Burroughs imposed heavy demands on her followers, pressing them into keeping a twenty-four hour world peace vigil that induced heavy competition among her devotees.

Burroughs’ transformation to Guru-hood was also accomplished with the aid of a Tibetan lama, who was wowed by her ability to maintain a stable of high-achieving, top-dollar donating students. Gyatrul Rinpoche, a Vajrayana teacher of the Nyingma sect who had established his own temple near Ashland, Oregon, endorsed Burroughs as a tulku, a reincarnated Bodhisattva, or “Hero of Enlightenment.” Burroughs saw the opening, and quickly negotiated a merger of her people skills with the established cachet of the two-thousand year-old Vajrayana brand, assuming the name of Jetsun Akhon Norbu Lhamo, and redecorating her temple with a blend of traditional Tibetan imagery and New Age crystals. “Jetsunma,” as she came to be familiarly known, assumed her place on the traditional lama’s throne, donned resplendent brocade robes, and doffed the peaked “lotus hat” that lamas wear on ceremonial occasions. The effect would have been silly if anyone with ordinary sensibilities had been able to view the proceedings; but by then the critical mass of Student-side TIDS sufferers had generated a field of delusive glamour, and Burroughs’ unabashed self-love conquered all hearts. For a while.

As her authority grew unchecked, her antisocial inclinations and intolerance with dissent waxed ever more virulent. Burroughs’ demands for money and power crescendoed in a rampage of bizarre behavior that included serial marriages to several students twenty years her junior, rapacious financial exploitation of her flock, and culminated in her arrest by the Maryland State Police for battery on a young nun. Shortly thereafter, Burroughs moved to Sedona, Arizona, and in almost clichéd fashion, Burroughs predicted a series of “earth catastrophes” that failed to take place in 1999.

Franklin Jones

Jones was once a handsome young writer with a Masters in English from Stanford. After serving his apprenticeship with the two tantric gurus Rudrananda and Muktananda, he assembled his own flock of sycophants. A prolific writer blessed with the gift of gab, Jones’ spiritual opus, “The Knee of Listening,” became a staple on the bookshelves of hippies inclined to philosophical nattering. Starting out in Los Angeles, he took advantage of the drug culture in the sixties to induct young, beautiful women into his cult. Jones’ story gives us insight into one of the important methods of inducing Student-side TIDS among followers. It is axiomatic that women will perceive any man as dominant who commands the devotion of all other men. Jones conquered women by surrounding himself with subservient male devotees. During all-night drug and drinking parties, Jones would deploy his male devotees to separate women from their boyfriends or husbands. Jones would then make his move on the new woman. By morning, she would have discovered a new form of bliss in the arms of the guru, and her ordinary lover would have his ego reduced to the size of a pin. Unable to leave his woman behind, and equally unable to argue her away from Jones, the cuckolded man would often become a new devotee. Thus Jones acquired two TIDS victims for the price of one.

In 1985, Jones’ abuse of his devotees exploded in the national press and a he settled a string of lawsuits that alleged what was widely-known in hippie society – that his “communities” were parasitic projects that enriched him with sex, money and power, leaving his devotees psychologically and financially deprived. He bought a small island in Fiji from actor Raymond Burr and moved there with a clutch of disciples whose fate it was to explore the heart of darkness.

Over the years, Jones extracted enough wealth from his devotees to sustain a remarkably self-indulgent lifestyle, toward the end of which he was able to pose as a visual artist who integrated digital photography with monumental aluminum installations that were displayed in Italy and praised by a stable of pet intellectuals in fatuous post-modern style: “It is Adi Da Samraj’s imaginative triumph to have conveyed the illusions created by discrepant points of view and the emotionally liberating effect when they aesthetically unite in the psyche of the shocked perceiver.”

Until the end of his life in November 2007, by way of singing for his supper, Jones continued to emit his original spiritual prose stylings: "I Am The Perfectly Subjective Divine Person, Self-Manifested As The Ruchira Avatar—Who Is The First, The Last, and The Only Adept-Realizer, Adept-Revealer, and Adept-Revelation of The Seventh Stage of Life.”

For several days after his death, Jones’ devotees entertained the notion that he might “wake up” from a fatal heart attack, a notion that they apparently abandoned reluctantly, presumably when the odor of putrefaction became evident. Even the most slavish student-side TIDS sufferers will be forced to admit, after a decent interval, that the guru’s shit admittedly stinks.

Student-side TIDS

Student-side TIDS can develop after relatively brief immersion in a Tantric guru-student relationship. The roots of Student-side TIDS lie in the student’s feeling that they are missing out on the truly miraculous character of a world they believe exists, but are unable to contact. They may have experienced, through drugs, romantic adventures, travel or other emotional stimulants, a sense that life has occasionally parted the veil and allows them to glimpse a magical universe, and that if they could establish a connection with this other realm, they could escape the dull reality in which they feel themselves confined. Tantra is generally not for those students who are comfortable with sustained intellectual effort in pursuit of spiritual awareness. However, it often attracts those fond of mastering an arcane vocabulary, esoteric symbols, and a pantheon of gods and goddesses. Spiritual seekers drawn to tantra share some of the psychological traits of compulsive gamblers, who have an unshakeable faith in their unique luck, and a passionate desire to harvest outsized rewards.

Students of tantric teachers often suffer from a derogatory self-image, and seek to ally themselves with the glamour emanating from the guru. Inclined to believe in their own specialness, but convinced that they cannot achieve transcendence by their own efforts, they place their faith in esoteric traditions that hold the promise of revealing secret knowledge. Tantric teachers whipsaw students emotionally by alternately deriding them for their emotional and intellectual efforts, teasingly making a show of effortless transcendence, then accusing them savagely for being unable to make the petty sacrifices of time and money that would demonstrate the sincerity of their devotion. Tantric teachers also use standard methods of breaking down social conditioning and inducing dependence on the tantric teacher by requiring participation in lengthy rituals and practices, demanding that they render personal services to the teacher and his family, and doling out humiliation as if it were a blessing. Sleep deprivation and rote repetitions of ritual acts also serve to deaden mental acuity and induce an undiscerning mental state in which a fog of confusion can be recharacterized as a sense of removal from worldly attachment. In the tantric environment, all activities and events are re-imagined as sacred portents and harbingers of blessings or misfortune. Nothing that happens in the “mandala” is ever ordinary, thus life becomes charged with imputed significance.

The net result of the tantric milieu is to institutionalize a groupthink founded on individual helplessness and total dependence on the guru. Individually, this may deepen into self-hate, an obsession with the person of the guru, performance of acts of extreme self-sacrifice to obtain approval from the guru, and even the veneration of the guru's physical detritus, i.e., nail and hair clippings. Student-side TIDS may induce bouts of acute anxiety alternating with depression, episodic flights from reality characterized by transient ecstasy and self-deification, compulsive meditative or devotional behavior, and the nagging fear of damnation, referred to in tantric circles as "Vajra Hell."

Student-side TIDS also takes on various apparently benign forms, that manifest in persons with a bland personality or low intellectual vitality, who feel best when kept in a low position without hope of advancement. People who avoid challenges and suffer anxiety primarily when presented with changes of routine may find Student-side TIDS to be a perfect refuge from the rigors of ordinary life. When combined with the narcotic effect of mantra recitation and avoidance of troubling discursive thought, the result can be the formation of a personality happily uninterested in the various pursuits that comprise the elements of an ordinary, satisfying life, such as relationships with other people, having children, a satisfying career, or aesthetic and intellectual activities.

Transitional TIDS

Transitional TIDS develops in some victims of Student-TIDS after a long period of earnest striving to earn the favor of the guru. Transitional TIDS emerges only when fertilized by encouragement from the guru, and is characterized by feelings of superiority, identification with the dominating image of the guru, and confidence that one will in fact attain guru status. Transitional-TIDS sufferers assume the role of go-betweens in the TIDS community, transmitting messages to and from the guru, arranging monetary transfers, and helping Student TIDS victims to establish their credentials. Transitional TIDS often manifests in subtle and gross anti-social predatory behavior typical of those afflicted by Guru-TIDS. Transitional TIDS usually develops into a cyclic pattern in which the characteristics of Student-TIDS, i.e., ambitious hope and low self image, alternate with the manic character of Guru-TIDS, i.e., self-deification and megalomania, creating a alternating vortex of delusional activity that is manipulated by the guru to satisfy his or her own pathological whims.

Transitional TIDS sufferers, torn by the tension of alternating between ambition and hope on the one hand, and humiliation and despair on the other, often suffer from a suppression of affect that gives them a rigid, serious cast of mind. Transitional TIDS tends to extinguish the sense of humor, and victims of the intense mental division that characterizes this state of mind rarely smile or laugh except when the Guru makes a joke. They will often make attempts at humor that they believe reflect the Guru’s apparently spontaneous style, but such attempts usually fail, eliciting only false laughter from Student-side TIDS sufferers, who are attempting to curry favor from a higher-status devotee. Transitional TIDS sufferers thus are entombed in their personal rigidity and surrounded by a social environment of extreme conformity and predictability, a sort of frozen hell from which they gain a respite only during bouts of despondency and self-loathing.

Treatment Modalities

Student-side TIDS is treatable if the victim can be removed from the TIDS-saturated environment and is engaged in extensive talk-therapy with persons who know nothing about the guru who is the focus of infatuation. For example, simply being put to work in a position involving manual labor, in the company of people who do not know or care about the guru, can be remarkably effective. The complete lack of responsiveness to discussion of the guru tends to give the TIDS-sufferer pause, as they realize that people can live not only without their guru, but without any guru whatsoever. Talk-therapy with people of a “spiritual” bent is, not surprisingly, generally unhelpful. The key to treatment, if a quick cure is desired, is simply to extract the victim from the environment, expose them to ordinary life, and allow their mind to recover from the continuous flow of obsessive guru-regard.

Transitional TIDS poses somewhat of a more difficult problem, but is treatable. The Transitional TIDS sufferer is much more likely to break out of their cycle through an explosion of anger when their hopes of achieving Guru-hood are suddenly exploded. Interestingly, gurus can provoke such occurrences by taxing a student’s loyalty to an extreme, suddenly breaking the illusion that the guru actually loves the student, leaving the student feeling extraordinarily bereft. Another exit point may appear when the Transitional TIDS victim hits a low point of disappointment, that may be provoked by an excessive humiliation at the hands of the Guru or one of his/her minions. Finally, jealousy may arise when a Transitional TIDS sufferer realizes that other people, less spiritual, less devoted, even less intelligent or sensitive to life, are having a wonderful time on a much smaller endowment of spiritual excitement.

Guru-side TIDS is of course, statistically a much rarer phenomenon than Student or Transitional-Side TIDS, and occasions for treatment are almost never presented. Further, by and large, the experience of Guru-side TIDS seems to spark little desire for change in the mind of the guru, and without that impetus, change is extremely unlikely.


In conclusion, while there are hopeful methods of treatment for Student-TIDS and Transitional TIDS, those afflicted with Guru-TIDS face a bleak diagnosis, because once a Tantric authority “recognizes” an individual’s Guru status, and students begin reinforcing it, a self-reinforcing delusional system is established from which anecdotal evidence indicates there is no exit. Indeed, because enabling the Guru’s pathology is the central rationale for the TIDS-powered community, it sets up a perpetual-motion machine that defies the erosion of popularity that even pop stars and first-tier Hollywood actors suffer. If we were sufficiently cynical, we might entertain the notion that Gurus have somehow achieved an enviable position, but then we would be obliged to elevate tapeworms and ticks to a position higher on the evolutionary ladder.

Copyright 2003, Charles Carreon
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:06 am

February, 2005


The 14th Dalai Lama has been a friend to American interests for his entire adult life, since he abdicated his throne in order to save his people from the dangers of .... Well, okay, it didn't turn out very well for the Tibetans, but he did save his skin, his stash of cash, and a lot of reactionary Tibetan oligarchs who came with him. Fortunately, the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States of America was able to provide him with employment as soon as he arrived in India. Since then, he has reliably made himself a thorn in the side of the Chinese, giving the United States the leverage it has needed to build an arms-length trading relationship that now supplies us with enough borrowed money to buy all the microchips, flat screens, cell phones and cheap clothing we could ever want. While his aspirations to someday "return to Tibet" are unlikely to be fulfilled, his mission on behalf of America has been far more successful, and with the installation of numerous "tulkus" on the boards of nonprofit organizations throughout the United States, the exchange has been more than fair. His country has infiltrated ours, and our country has used his people to the best advantage. For this, we commend him, and with heartfelt thanks award him the Cross of Secret Achievement.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:07 am


First question: How did corporations become the major beneficiaries of the Fourteenth Amendment, which was enacted to prevent recently-freed slaves from being deprived of life, liberty, and property?

Second question: Since corporations are designed by law as the profit-seeking extensions of their shareholders, who are insulated from personal liability for the wrongful conduct of the corporation; since corporations repeatedly break laws intended to protect human health and the public benefit, employing deception as routine practice; since corporations exhibit no remorse for their misdeeds and perpetrate wrong as a routine practice; would it not therefore be appropriate to diagnose corporate behavior as psychopathic?

The Corporation, a movie I just saw tonight, answers the first question and poses the second. It then proceeds to analyze the nature of corporate crimes against human beings, highlighting dramatic confrontations between oppressed people and corporate goons, giving equal time to the avuncular, bushy-browed Chief Executive of Shell Oil, and to a pedantic economic analyst who waxes eloquent on the joys of pollution credits and how well the world will be cared for when every square inch of it is privately owned.

The movie devotes a good share of time to the fight by the people of Cochabamba, Bolivia, to free themselves from an oppressive private water company that was imposed on them by the International Monetary Fund. This devil's bargain put Bechtel in the position of selling water to Bolivians, even criminalizing the act of gathering rainfall, and jacking the price of water up to a quarter of the income of these simple people, for whom life is hard enough without thirst and a lack of washing water to make it still more cruel. It also reprised footage of Michael Moore inviting Phil Knight to come visit his sweatshops in Indonesia, and covered the Kathy Lee/Wal Mart sweatshop flap, which apparently did not in any degree alter Wal Mart's purchasing policies, but did popularize the issue, leading to a big anti-sweatshop deal with The Gap.

The film also contrasts images of opulent soirees in the conference rooms of the Seattle WTO summit, while anarchists swirled around the building, attacking the barricades. It is hard to tell, in these scenes, who is more out of touch -- the trade boosters who shoehorn the world's economy into their projection of perfection, or the zealots who attack a corporate monolith that they do not comprehend.

While corporations will poison, beat, starve, and extort in the developing world, they use media manipulation to deaden public awareness and distort the truth in the "developed world." How far the media monopolists will go to kill the truth is made clear by the sad story of a couple of Fox reporters in Florida, Jane Akre and Steve Wilson, who tried to break the scandal that Monsanto is poisoning cows and people with bovine growth hormone ("Prolactin"). While they were highly touted as "investigative journalists," their story was the wrong story. Fox wouldn't run it, and they were jacked around, threatened with firing, jacked around more, fired, and even after they sued, they were deprived of their wrongful termination jury verdict by an appeals court that said there was nothing illegal about manufacturing a false news story to distort the truth in favor of the Monsanto-controlled-milk industry; therefore, there had been nothing illegal about firing them for refusing to engineer a false story. Why I never wanted to be a lawyer. I knew courts pull that kinda crap. Yeccccchhh. Makes ya wanna shower.

The film tries to balance criticism of the corps with an encouraging message that changes sometimes happen when people fight back against corporate abuse. We are each encouraged to plant an acorn of faith that we, the living, breathing creatures, can recover our freedom from the Hannibal Lecter-like corporate monsters that prey on humanity, using divide and conquer techniques to keep on devouring the earth and its children.

The most encouraging character is a kindly carpet magnate, who said he had an epiphany when he read "The Ecology of Commerce, A Declaration of Sustainability," by Paul Hawken. He realized that he was a plunderer, because he was taking wastefully from the planet's resources to create his product, and producing garbage. Since his epiphany, his company has become 30% more sustainable, or something like that, and he aims to reach what he calls "the peak of Mt. Sustainability" for his business by 2020.

One of my favorite stories is about a Roman tribune who was leading a troop of soldiers in the Middle East when he saw an old man planting fig trees he'd grown from cuttings. He called the old man to him and asked why he was performing this labor when he'd never be around to eat the figs. The old man replied that while that might be true, even if he weren't around, his children would be, and they would benefit. Years later, the tribune, grown older and more powerful, camped with his regiment in a grove of figs. Once again, he saw the old man laboring, and told his soldiers that he wanted a bag of figs from the old man, and to have him bring them to him personally. When the old man entered his presence, he directed the man to put the figs in a bowl, and ordered his treasurer to fill the empty bag with gold. So there were two wise men, and both of them made more fortunate thereby -- the tribune enriched in wisdom, and the old man in all manner of bounty.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:11 am

by Charles Carreon
December, 2003


Everybody knows the Dalai Lama. He won the Nobel Peace Prize for a new sort of reason. Most people get it because they caused peace to break out in some region of the world where warfare had previously been the norm, but the Dalai Lama didn’t do that. Tibet is probably as un-peaceful as it’s ever been, and he never goes there. He’s the “leader of the Tibetan people in exile,” and his exile has not won the Tibetans peace, freedom, or anything else that is desirable. But let’s move on. This essay is about the history of the Dalai Lamas, that I almost guarantee will surprise you.

You probably know that the Dalai Lama, like many other Tibetan clerics, is said to be the latest in a long line of sacred “incarnations” of a single blessed being who migrates from one dead body to the next living one, getting smarter, more spiritual, more magical, and more worth bowing to with each successive “rebirth.” This means that the Fourteenth Dalai Lama should be at least thirteen times as experienced as any other human being, and therefore entitled to extraordinary deference for his past achievements, extending into the distant past.

You would expect, of course, that the First Dalai Lama might have known that he was the First Dalai Lama, and might have said something about planning on being reborn again. But that’s not the case. The First Dalai Lama never mentioned being a Dalai Lama, because he was only recognized "posthumously." Same with the Second Dalai Lama, who was also recognized posthumously. And since they never mentioned being the First and Second Dalai Lamas, who do you think identified them as such? Well, and I’ll tell you right now that you’re going to get better at this, they were both posthumously recognized by the Third Dalai Lama!

Under what circumstances did the Third Dalai Lama “recognize” his “previous incarnations?” Well of course, after he identified himself as the Third Dalai Lama. This tradition of picking your psychic ancestors and adopting their venerable character as your own might seem rather shabby, but Tibetan lamas have long engaged in retrospective embellishments of their past incarnations.

Furthermore, this tradition of burnishing one’s resume with illustrious past lives was not left behind in Tibet. On one of his first visits to the United States, while visiting Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello estate, Tenzin Gyatso, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, told a TIME Magazine reporter that he had a hunch he might have previously incarnated as Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, member of the First Constitutional Congress, and Third President of the United States. Let’s just assume that the Fourteenth Dalai Lama’s hunch was correct, and he was T. Jefferson, Founding Father of the USA, born April 13, 1743, died July 4, 1826. During most of that time period, the Eighth Dalai Lama, Jamphel Gyatso, was on the throne in Tibet (1758-1804). But in 1743, when Jefferson was born, the Seventh Dalai Lama was on the throne, so let’s assume that the Seventh Dalai Lama was capable of generating a double to be reborn in Virginia, and that there was no hiccup in Thomas Jefferson’s energy when the Seventh Dalai Lama died, and the Eighth Dalai Lama took over. You might even think harder about this topic, because if the Dalai Lama can generate two incarnations, then it would be wise to have overlapping incarnations, to eliminate the interregnum between one incarnation and the next. Keep this question in mind as you read on, because you will see why the Tibetans would never want to eliminate the interregnum between incarnations – that’s where all the fun happens.

There’s just one more question I want to ask about Thomas Jefferson. Was Jamphel Gyatso’s character at all like Thomas Jefferson’s? According to an article on Minnestoa Public Radio (“MPR”) website, Jamphel Gyatso "was uninterested in politics, and for a 150-year period starting with his reign, day-to-day power was exercised in Tibet … by a series of regents. During Jamphel Gyatso's reign, Tibet fought wars with the Gurkhas of Nepal, and received a delegation from England, which was interested in Tibet because of its strategic location in relation to British India, China, and Czarist Russia." [1] So Jamphel Gyatso/Thomas Jefferson was simultaneously fighting a war with Britain on one side of the world, having them to tea on the other side, and the British none the wiser.

However that works out, you'd figure that, having integrated his lessons from occupying the Oval Office on the other side of the world, the Ninth Dalai Lama would drop the apolitical stance of the Eighth Dalai Lama and import some democratic reforms into Tibet. Let's check the Ninth Dalai Lama’s record. Whoops! He didn't get much of a chance to adopt democratic reforms, since he was "likely murdered" at age 11 by his compassionate tutors. According to MPR, the Ninth Dalai Lama, Lungtok Gyatso (1806-1815) enjoyed a very brief reign. He "died at age 11 in the Potala palace. Some historians believe that, given the tumultuous state of Tibetan politics, he was assassinated. The subsequent three Dalai Lamas also died young. Some theories suggest they, too, were murdered." So the Ninth, Tenth and Eleventh Dalai Lamas all died young in the Potala Palace? Well, maybe he did come back from America with some ideas for reform, and those ideas didn’t receive a warm reception.

However, we have gotten a little ahead of ourselves. Let’s get back to the Third Dalai Lama, who recognized himself as the incarnation of two men who had apparently never prophesied that, in the future, they would be reborn in the person of the Third Dalai Lama. That’s interesting, because one of the bulwarks of "credibility" for the serial-reincarnation hypothesis is that the births of the reincarnated ones are foreseen by the prior incarnation. This slim warrant of authority is lacking for the real first Dalai Lama, i.e., the Third. But no one argued with him about it, or if they did, they didn’t fare well, because the Third Dalai Lama had Mongol muscle to back his claim.

Whatever he might have lacked in sanctity, the Third Dalai Lama made up for in political savvy. In 1578, he was hanging out with a Mongolian warlord named Altan Khan when suddenly he had a flash, and saw that in a past life, Khan had been a famous Tibetan warlord, whose spiritual mentor had been a prior incarnation of the Third Dalai Lama! It was a Happy Reunion, and both Altan Khan and the Third Dalai Lama made the most of it. The Mongols built huge temples, made massive offerings to the Buddhist faith, and both sides cemented their relationship to such a degree that when it came time to select a Fourth Dalai Lama, he turned out to be …. the grandson of Altan Khan. In this twist of fate you can see how, by skillfully re-defining the past, you can control the future.

The Fifth Dalai Lama, also known as the “Great” Dalai Lama, took full advantage of his close collaboration with the Mongolian armed forces. My source of Tibetan history for this comes from a website maintained by a Tibetan lama called the “Sharmapa,” whose own sect came into conflict with the Dalai Lama’s several hundred years ago, a wound that has not healed over the centuries, resulting in his willingness to provide a candid assessment of those olden times now so happily remembered by today’s New Agers as the golden age of Buddhist monarchy:

The landscape of the old Tibet was dotted with wars, political intrigue, and bloody feuds. For centuries, two old, “red-hat" Buddhist schools, the Sakya and the Kagyu, held, one after the other, undisputed sway over the country. By the beginning of the seventeenth century, a new power had emerged and began to threaten the political status quo: the Gelugs, or Virtuous Ones, a "yellow-hat," reformed Buddhist order, founded around 1410 by a disciple of the 4th Karmapa. Led by the mighty 5th Dalai Lama and his authoritative ministers, the Gelugs invited Gushri Khan, the Mongolian warlord, into Tibet in 1638. Their design was to break the power of the Kagyus, take over the government, and secure a hold on Kham in the east and the rebellious Tsang in the south of the country. Given free rein, the ferocious Mongol hordes razed to the ground or converted to the Gelugpa tradition a large number of Nyingma monasteries. The 10th Karmapa had to flee into a thirty-year exile after his camp was attacked by an army operating on orders from the Dalai Lama's ministers. The school of the Virtuous Ones imposed their political hegemony with sword and fire.

“Sword and fire,” eh? That usually is indicative of the activities of pious rulers eager to avoid bloodshed, right? Well, no worries – the Fifth Dalai Lama was enthusiastic about what he had to offer the Tibetan people, and to paraphrase Rumsfeld, you don’t go to temple with the followers you wish had…. Yes, the Fifth Dalai Lama was a powerful figure, so powerful in fact that after he died, his "Regent" concealed his death for about fifteen years. According to MPR, "Lozang Gyatso's death in 1682 was not announced until 1697, as the regent of Tibet attempted to monopolize power."

That's cool. Yeah, let’s conceal the Dalai Lama’s death for fifteen years, so we can run the country and -- wait a minute -- how the hell do you conceal the Dalai Lama's death for fifteen years? Wouldn't somebody notice? That will give you an idea how tightly lips were sealed in the Potala. And if you think you can keep a political secret for fifteen years without killing a few people and bribing a hell of a lot more, then you should definitely be a Tibetan Buddhist, 'cause you can believe anything.

But eventually, someone figured out that the Dalai Lama was dead (“He never drinks his tea!” say the servants) and you gotta pick a new one. No problem. Grab another kid and let’s go. And you don’t have to take the child of anybody famous – after all, they’re just going to kill him when he starts to mature. The Sixth Dalai Lama died young, at age 23. He made the mistake of alienating the Mongols who had made the Dalai Lamas the puppet leaders of the nation. The Mongols invaded, kicked him off the throne, and killed him when he tried to flee Tibet. From the MPR site: "Tsangyang Gyatso (1683-1706). Because of the delay in announcing the Fifth Dalai Lama's death, Tsangyang Gyatso was well into his teens before he was recognized as the Sixth Dalai Lama. He is considered to be the most unconventional Dalai Lama. He dressed as a layperson, drank wine, enjoyed the company of women and composed love songs that are still popular in Tibet. His eccentric style alienated him from Mongol leader Lhabzang Khan, who invaded Tibet during this time and deposed Tsangyang Gyatso. He died while leaving the country; many historians believe he was murdered. Lhabsang Khan appointed another monk, Yeshe Gyatso, as the Seventh Dalai Lama, but his legitimacy has never been recognized by the Tibetan people."

The Seventh Dalai Lama knew better than to annoy the politicians, and he played both sides against the middle. He got the Chinese to push out the Mongols who had deposed the Sixth Dalai Lama. But you know how it is with the Chinese – you invite them in to smoke a little opium, and they never go home! The Seventh Dalai Lama was a figurehead political leader, because the Chinese installed a governor, called the "Amban" to make all the decisions pursuant to Chinese law.

The Eighth Dalai Lama we already discussed. Another hands-off leader, thanks perhaps to having transferred his political spirit through the ether to his co-incarnation, Thomas Jefferson.

The Ninth Dalai Lama, as we know, died young. The stats on the 10th, 11th, and 12th Dalai Lamas make it clear that here was a position with no job security. From the MPR website again:

10th -- Tsultrim Gyatso (1816-1837). Like his predecessor, Tsultrim Gyatso died suddenly in Potala before assuming temporal power. During his brief life, Tibet continued to isolate itself, while keeping a suspicious eye on its borders.

11th -- Khendrup Gyatso (1838-1856). He was the third in a series of Dalai Lamas who died at an early age. During Khendrup Gyatso's life, China's influence in Tibet weakened further because of the Opium War and the Taiping Rebellion. Tibet's struggles continued with Nepal and Ladakh to the west.

12th -- Trinley Gyatso (1856-1875). His reign was a time of severe unrest among Tibet's neighbors. The weaker Qing dynasty was unable to provide military support because of its own battles. At the same time, the British intensified pressure on the Tibetan borders, from their colonial bastion in India.

Now we can discuss why the interregnum between incarnations is so useful. The point of “finding” a Dalai Lama and then killing him before he assumes power is to perpetuate Regent-Rule. Let the people have their Dalai Lama, but always keep him either in the cradle or in the grave, and never let him assume the throne. Then the Potala Junta can rule in his stead. Victor and Victoria Trimondi have written a book entitled The Shadow of the Dalai Lama, which alludes to murder and human sacrifice as elements of Tibetan Buddhist ritual. Before you discard this notion, you must consider this fact: the Holy Men in the Potala somehow killed the God-king Four Times! Serially going through this charade of "finding a reincarnation," taking him from his family, mummifying him in state regalia, then sending him off to the heavenly realms, after performing careful rituals to protect his soul from bruising during frequent deaths and rebirths. When you think of it that way, it makes all those images of little boys in silk robes and yellow hats somehow a little sinister, doesn’t it?

Now consider also that the old lamas who committed the god-murders were supposedly also reincarnating. The histories don’t say that the Potala Junta was finally broken up and the Twelfth Dalai Lama was therefore not murdered, and all of his killers were forbidden to reincarnate. No, the story is that the Potala Junta leaders continued to reincarnate, and their later incarnations still hold positions of power within the Gelugpa power structure.

So ask yourself this: When the Fourteenth Dalai Lama draws inspiration from his lineage, how does he do it? He of course knows the history of his past incarnations, although he never discusses it, but wouldn’t it be nice to ask him, “What's it like to be surrounded by the reincarnations of people who serially killed your past incarnations?” It would also be fun to ask: “How do you draw inspiration from the Third Dalai Lama, who was apparently a total opportunist? How do you draw inspiration from the Fourth Dalai Lama, the grandson of Altan Khan, whose ascension to the apex of ecclesiastical power was obviously rigged? How do you draw inspiration from the Fifth Dalai Lama, who converted people by the sword and acquired monasteries from competing sects in a gangsterish takeover assisted by Gushri Khan's Mongol thugs? How does this past history of your many incarnations, of whom so many were murdered, and so many others were involved in killing and political gamesmanship, add up to a Nobel Peace Prize?”

But let's move on. The Thirteenth Dalai Lama lived a normal lifespan. How? Well, he probably got to thinkin' about what had happened to the Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Dalai Lamas, and caught a clue. He refused to live in the Potala Palace. He moved into the Summer Palace, the “Norbu Lingka,” and wouldn’t be budged. And he left the country for very long trips – spending several years in Russia as a guest of Gurdjieff (called Dorjieff in most of the books), and also spent some time in India. Supposedly he did this to escape Chinese aggression, but I suspect that was an excuse for getting out of Lhasa any damn way he could. Much better out there traveling amongst the poor people who think you're god, than in the castle, where everyone thinks they're god, and you're just a pawn in their game. All of the old conniving lamas stayed in Lhasa, with their wealth, concubines, and ceremonies. Out there on horseback with the yak herders, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama was a lot safer.

Take note that the Fourteenth Dalai Lama has followed the same tactic, at least by getting out of Lhasa. Of course, you probably think he made a wise move when he relocated to India in 1951 with financial assistance from the United States Central Intelligence Agency (a fact that you can independently confirm with an Internet search of “dalai lama admits cia payment”). But let’s take note that few heroic leaders whose people survived a hostile attack ever did so by fleeing to another country. When London was being bombed with V2 rockets and buzz bombs, did Churchill flee to America? Why did Israel push so hard to evict Arafat from Palestine? Because when the leader abdicates, his followers are leaderless. A leader in exile is no leader at all.

From a strategic, diplomatic viewpoint, the Dalai Lama’s abdication was detrimental to the Tibetan people. The first time the Fourteenth Dalai Lama left, on December 20, 1950, he simultaneously sent a delegation from Lhasa to Beijing to negotiate a deal with Mao’s diplomats. The delegates unanimously signed an agreement that destroyed the legal foundation for any claim to Tibetan autonomy, and still provides the basis for the PRC claim that Tibet is part of China. [2] The Fourteenth Dalai Lama was supposedly very displeased with this agreement that his diplomats signed, but he didn’t repudiate it for years.

But although it was not a good political move, it was probably the right move for the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, who was still young, and wanted to stay alive. Tibet, a far-flung, ungovernable land controlled by nobles who were easy prey for the organized Chinese soldiers, could not maintain a national unity it had never possessed. There were no newspapers, no radios, no automobiles, none of the infrastructure that binds a nation together. Unlike the Bhutanese royal family, that accepted an offer from British to defend their country against Chinese aggression, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama, urged by arrogant Tibetan autocrats, had rejected the same offer.

The Dalai Lama had no means to exercise leverage against the Chinese. The people he sent to negotiate with China came back to Lhasa, having given away the country. Lhasa was crawling with war profiteers selling supplies to the Chinese garrison. Worst of all, in exchange for a year of non-aggression, the young Dalai Lama allowed the Chinese to build a road from the Chinese frontier all the way to Lhasa, opening an avenue for military transports to penetrate the heart of Tibet. Talk about bad feng shuei! Facilitating transportation for an attacking army is the ultimate strategic blunder. In Europe, the barbarians always tried to destroy the Roman roads on which the Emperor’s armies travelled with deadly speed. So by the time the Fourteenth Dalai Lama abdicated, he likely had no choice.

So what's the box score?

Let’s examine the history of the 14 Dalai Lamas:

1. The First Dalai Lama didn't even know he was one.
2. The Second Dalai Lama didn't know it either.
3. The Third Dalai Lama was a clever opportunist who usurped the good reputation of the first two “Dalai Lamas” by inventing the lineage and making himself third.
4. The Fourth Dalai Lama was a royal appointee.
5. The Fifth Dalai Lama was a killer-conqueror, and his last fifteen years of "rule" were fraudulent.
6. The Sixth Dalai Lama was murdered at the age of 23, and his appointed successor was denied office.
7. The Seventh Dalai Lama was put on the throne by the Chinese, who treated him as a figurehead.
8. The Eighth Dalai Lama was a hands-off guy who let the Chinese run the country.
9. The Ninth Dalai Lama was murdered and never ruled.
10. The Tenth Dalai Lama was murdered and never ruled.
11. The Eleventh Dalai Lama was murdered and never ruled.
12. The Twelfth Dalai Lama was murdered and never ruled.
13. The Thirteenth Dalai Lama fled twice, and rejected a defense pact from Britain that would have protected Tibet from Chinese aggression.
14. The Fourteenth Dalai Lama abdicated, never ruled the country, and has won the Nobel Peace Prize without garnering any peace.

In the end, the illustrious history of the Dalai Lamas just doesn't exist. Their sad legacy is a testament to the Byzantine manipulations of the Potala Junta. The credulous Tibetan people have been taught that they are led by a god-king, but that king is an invention of unscrupulous political strategists who sell influence as their primary product.

Considering the undisputed facts, it is absurd to imagine the Fourteenth Dalai Lama as the product of some refining process that has produced him as the distilled essence of human virtue. The entire lineage is a sham that was (1) raised into being by the Third Dalai Lama’s exploitation of the reputations of two dead clerics, (2) converted to a super-executive position by uniting military might with sacred authority in the person of the Fourth Dalai Lama, (3) enhanced in power through the exercise of military might by the Fifth Dalai Lama, (4) subordinated in power by the execution of the Sixth Dalai Lama for refusing to obey the will of the Mongol leaders, (5) subordinated to Chinese influence during the reigns of the Seventh and Eighth, (6) subordinated to the Regent Rule of the Potala Junta during the serial assassinations of the Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth, (7) living on the outskirts of town or in foreign domains during the reign of the Thirteenth, and now, (8) represented by a man who fled Lhasa in his teens, has not set foot in his native land for fifty eight years, and is politically relevant only as an instrument of U.S. foreign policy to irritate the Chinese.

But, you may ask, am I not being terribly unkind to a man who has lost his throne, seen his countrymen trampled by tyranny, and made a dignified effort to keep the Tibetan cause before the international media in an era when that is not an easy job? He is no Baby Doc, and has led his followers less into harm’s way than … say … Yasser Arafat! He could have moved to Paris, or Geneva, or Buenos Aires, and exploited his advantages to enjoy a sybaritic lifestyle with female companionship.

He certainly could have, and these comparisons show him to be a man of restraint and dignity. But now that we have disposed of the venerable belief that his prior thirteen incarnations have suited him for the highest office on the planet, and that we should exalt him by acclamation to Secretary General of the UN, let’s ask how well he’s done his job of being the primary representative of the Tibetan people. He is the only Tibetan that most Europeans and Americans have ever heard of, and they think he is a saint. As for Tibetans, he has been their only political leader for fifty-eight years.

Think of what it has cost the Tibetan people to have the Dalai Lama as their only representative during the entire time since the Chinese came to plant their “revolution” on the Tibetan plateau! Do you really think that the Tibetans are well-represented in their struggle against Chinese oppression by a man who is never in the country, cannot set foot inside its borders, and for all his efforts has not achieved a single diplomatic victory in more than a half-century on the job?

This is the cost to the Tibetans of deifying one who is simply a man. The myth of the Dalai Lamas was always used to deprive the Tibetan people of real representation, and it continues to be used for that purpose today. However good the intentions of this man who wears the mantle of a god, by occupying that position, he obstructs the process of democracy, that is based on the belief in the equality of all people, and their right to representation in government.

© Copyright, Charles Carreon 2003



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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:12 am


I discovered Isaac Asimov's "Foundation Trilogy" in the Brophy College Preparatory School Library, operated by Father Fox, S.J., who was flagrantly gay and rumored to cruise the night streets of Phoenix in the conspicuous pink Ford Mustang that was parked in the St. Francis Church private parking lot. So it was considered decidedly uncool to hang around the library, for fear of being associated with Fr. Fox; nevertheless, I found The Foundation Trilogy there, and was delighted to discover that Asimov had articulated his vision of the Galactic Empire I had first visited in The Stars Like Dust into an ambitious space opera spanning the breadth of the galaxy and millennial time spans. The three books of the Trilogy are Foundation, Foundation and Empire, and Second Foundation.

To enter Asimov’s world, you need only lean on the fast forward button very hard, for a very long time. Watch the outward migration of humanity into interstellar space. Observe the long ages of high tech barbarism, planetary enslavement, brutal serfdom, every manner of horror perpetuated on thousands of new earths, until at last a Galactic Empire emerges to bring order to the galaxy. Watch as the Empire expands its influence, and then, watch as it ossifies ‘round the bureaucratic gravitational pull of the Galactic center, Trantor, a planet of metal populated by forty-billion government servants, who “found themselves all too few for the complications of the task.” Yes, two principles well known to our present age remain in effect in Asimov’s projected future -- Parkinson’s Law (work expands to fill the time available for its completion) and The Peter Principle (in business and government, people rise to their level of incompetence and stay there). Thus, Trantor’s bureaucrats, through laziness and isolation, sowed the seeds of the Empire’s fall.

Producing nothing, Trantor, like the United States in our present time, ran a serious trade deficit, although Asimov puts it more dramatically for the sake of future history: “Its dependence on the outer worlds for food and, indeed, for all necessities of life, made Trantor increasingly vulnerable to conquest by siege. In the last millennium of the Empire, the monotonously numerous revolts made Emperor after Emperor conscious of this, and Imperial policy became little more than the protection of Trantor’s delicate jugular vein …” Adopting a historical tone, Asimov cribs his facts from a most reliable source, The Encyclopedia Galactica. This seems appropriate in the first book, Foundation, where most of the drama is on a group of people who get shipped off to a distant planet on a mission to gather all of human knowledge into a single compilation, in order to establish a nucleus of culture that will survive the storm of the Empire’s inevitable fall. These Encyclopedists, as they are known, are the disciples of Hari Seldon, the founder of the science of psychohistory.

In the Prologue to the third book, Second Foundation, Asimov describes his scholar-hero and his new science of psycho-history, that he uses to predict the behavior of large populations of human beings:

“Hari Seldon was the last great scientist of the First Empire. It was he who brought the science of psycho-history to its full development. Psycho-history was the quintessence of sociology; it was the science of human behavior reduced to mathematical equations.

The individual human being is unpredictable, but the reactions of human mobs, Seldon found, could be treated statistically. The larger the mob, the greater the accuracy that could be achieved. And the size of the human masses that Seldon worked with was no less than the population of the Galaxy which in his time was numbered in the quintillions.”

At the age of thirteen, this sounded sensible to me. It really made sense that the larger the number of people you were dealing with, the easier it would be to predict their behavior. Certainly Aldous Huxley, in his book on mob psychology, Brave New World Revisited, embraced the idea that crowds are stupider, by far, than the individuals that comprise them. It is generally easier to predict the acts of the stupid than the acts of the clever.

The ability to predict is often proof of the ability to control, and indeed, by the second book, Foundation and Empire, it becomes evident that Hari Seldon’s purpose in founding the colony of Encyclopedists was to control the outcome of human history. The Encyclopedists establish their mission, which becomes known as “The Foundation,” funded with Imperial seed money, on Terminus, a small planet in a solar system at the very rim of the Milky Way.

Seldon enacted the Plan for a noble purpose -- to reduce the period of barbarism between the fall of the Empire until the establishment of a new galactic order from thirty-thousand years to a single millennium. As Asimov states in the Prologue to the third book, “Carefully, he set up two colonies of scientists that he called ‘Foundations.’ With deliberate intention, he set them up ‘at opposite ends of the Galaxy.’ One Foundation was set up in the full daylight of publicity. The existence of the other, the Second Foundation, was drowned in silence.”

Not only did he create redundant Foundations at opposite ends of the galaxy, Seldon made sure none of the original Encyclopedists were psycho-historians. According to fundamental laws of psycho-history, for members of the subject group to understand the science would undermine the predictability of the group’s behavior. Foundationers who did not know psycho-history could not interfere with the operation of its laws, and therefore could not upset the Seldon Plan.

Volume one of the Trilogy recounts the struggles of the first generations of Encyclopedists on Terminus to evolve from librarians to self-governing citizens. They do this by adopting representative democracy, freedom of the press, and free enterprise as the logical approach to governing a world where everyone is smart enough to see that everyone puts on their spacesuit one leg at a time. The chapter headings of the first volume read like the record of a predictable march of progress by determined, decent folks: Part I, The Psychohistorians; Part II, The Encyclopedists; Part III, The Mayors; Part IV, The Traders; and, Part V, The Merchant Princes.

Shortly after arriving at Terminus, the Encyclopedists discover they have moved into a bad neighborhood. The other two inhabited planets that share a sun with Terminus have slid into virtual barbarism, and are governed by falcon-breeding hereditary nitwits eagerly seeking nukes to fling at each other. These testosteroned fools are technically neutered, unable to manufacture nuclear weapons, but making do with just plain savagery. The wave of barbarism Seldon predicts will ultimately shatter the galactic core is already in well underway out in the galactic arms, so for the librarians, surviving the shakedowns from the local nobility becomes item one on the survival agenda.

The Encyclopedist geeks therefore manipulate neighboring Lord of the planet Anacreon by providing him with technological benefits only in the guise of religion, sending cadres of techno-priests to don ceremonial robes and run power plants like cathedrals, dispensing the rewards of science as the blessings of a generous, happy, god domesticated by the librarians. By this strategy, the Foundation wooed the natives with technological baubles, while concealing the true workings of technology.

Salvor Hardin was the Foundation’s first mayor. Hardin’s motto was “Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.” Wow, growing up in Nixon’s Amerika, that was a refreshing thought. I was surrounded by millions of incompetent people, thrashing with violent thoughts, wanting to pound peaceniks, hippies, beatniks, potheads and draft dodgers into mush, wanting to burn Vietnamese people with napalm and defoliate their forests, wanting to bust white radicals and black panthers, yeah yeah yeah. Those incompetents! I, on the other hand, thought myself to be a reasonable young man, and at thirteen, a pacifist. Like Hardin, I resolved, armed with cleverness, I would be competent.

My society was in crisis. I could see that. People afraid of getting drafted, going to Canada. My own brother wearing an Air Force ROTC uniform. We needed guidance, a voice of sanity. So it was with pleasure that I saw Asimov had designed ongoing guidance for the Foundationers to help them through the rough spots. Every now and then, the Foundation faces a “Seldon Crisis,” when things get so bad they have to have a chat with old Hari Seldon, whose image appears via hologram to talk about where he thinks they should be in the Plan. After the conclusion of the second Seldon Crisis, the founder appears to the assembled Foundation leaders to announce:

“According to our calculations, you have now reached domination of the barbarian kingdoms immediately surrounding the Foundation. … However, I might warn you here against overconfidence. It is not my way to grant you foreknowledge in these recordings, but it would be safe to indicate what you have now achieved is merely a new balance….”

Seldon’s congratulatory tone gives way to a somber note, as he adjures the assembled dignitaries to “never forget that there was another Foundation established eighty years ago; a Foundation at the other end of the Galaxy, at Star’s End. They will always be there for consideration. Gentlemen, nine hundred and twenty years of the Plan stretch ahead of you. The problem is yours! Go to it!”

The characters in the Trilogy are all carried along in the vast sweep of the plot, that spans thousands of years, sustaining suspense across the millennia as generations of Encyclopedists, Traders, Merchant Princes, etcetera, work their way through the Seldon Plan, the blind agents of Psychohistory. Only one character raises the possibility of the Plan being knocked off course -- the redoubtable Mule, who evokes the character of Napoleon, who knocked the course of European history into a cocked hat, destroying the raison d' etre of monarchy even as he sought to crown himself.

The Foundation Trilogy attempts to be a work of psychohistory in itself. In addition to prognosticating the evolution of computing power along the lines foreseen by Moore's Law, Asimov occasionally drops some anachronistic bloopers. I particularly like his voice-activated word processor that types the words out on paper as they are dictated. That's one device that will never be built. But then again, the science of psychohistory doesn't say that it is possible to preduct the evolution of particularly product lines, merely the general trend of development, and we do have voice-transcribing word processors.

Fundamentally, I disagree with one of Asimov's necessary plot assumptions -- that humanity will somehow survive a hundred thousand years despite continuing to fool around with nuclear power for trivial purposes, engage in nutcase aggression garbed as diplomacy, and treat planets and solar systems like feudal domains. Personally, I don't think we'll ever get off this planet alive before the sun goes nova and engulfs the planet in five billion years unless we get very organized and save the oxygen-producing flora on the planet for starters, the drinkable water as an important second issue, and the arable land for a third.

If humanity ever migrates off planet Earth, Asimov's Trilogy will seem utterly hilarious to our far-future descendants. Yet, the Trilogy powerfully communicates another valuable idea with which no one can disagree -- we must learn to discern historical trends and establish stores of human knowledge if we are to prevent relapses into barbarism when ignorant technocrats choke off creativity and innovation, the wellsprings of human evolution and social development. This idea will be meaningful until the end of time. Nor can we doubt that Asimov meant to instruct when he forged Hardin's aphorism, "Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent." It is possible that some young person will truly understand the meaning of this statement, and try to lead humanity in a truly competent fashion. Of course that person may already have lived, and been unable to find a market for their ideas. The science of psychohistory might explain why such an occurrence is highly likely.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:13 am


I'm sure you've seen The Guru already, and if you haven't, get ready for a delightful treat that is chock full of spiritual nutrition, and no kidding.

The Guru tells the story of Ramu Gupta (Jimmy Mistry) a young Indian dance teacher, who is hornswoggled into making the trip to New York City by his friend Vijay, who entices Ramu to make the trip by posing in front of a red Merecedes and telling Ramu he's rich, living in a penthouse. The penthouse turns out to be a flophouse room that Ramu is welcome to share the rent on. Ramu, however, isn't made of the same accepting stuff as his fellows, and quickly learns a lesson about America when a yuppie punches his lights out after Ramu dumps a load of chicken tikka masala in his face for ridiculing Ramu's accent and ancestry. Out of a job, Ramu decides to stick with his plan to become an actor, and soon finds himself at an audition to be a male porn star.

Dwain, the porn producer, cannot grasp that Ramu is trying to audition for a dance role, and urges Ramu to strip down. Ramu cannot understand that he is being asked to disrobe to display his equipment, and offers to display his macarena. "Macarena? Is that what the kids call it in your part of the world? Okay, let me see your Macarena." Stripped down to his underwear, Ramu thinks he's being asked to do a Tom Cruise imitation, and does a perfectly choreographed cover of Cruise's rendition of Bob Seger's "Old Time Rock and Roll" from "Risky Business." The porn producer is floored. The equipment looks good, even under wraps. He's hired.

On the set, Rammy, as he's now known, is dressed as an islander in a leaf skirt with a suggestive spear. Onto the indoor beach strides his love interest, Sharonna, playing Senator Snatch (Heather Graham), dressed in a tight pinstriped suit, carrying an attache case. She's there to inspect the natives, which she thinks will be easier after she gets into her working uniform, a lovely red bra and panties with matching garter belt and stockings.


The scene comes to a screaming halt, however, when Sharonna announces loudly to everyone on the set: "We don't have wood." The Cameraman echoes "Stand by. Holding on wood." The Soundman confirms, "Standing by for wood." Shouting fills the studio: "We are holding on wood!"

Then the revelations start:

SHARRONA: It's just sex, silly.

RAMU: It's just the idea of being naked in front of all these people.

SHARRONA: Well, the trick is not to be naked up here. It's like other actors get costumes, but we don't, or at least not for very long. So your naked body is really just your costume.

RAMU: I promise, in India I'm a real stud. If you and I could just go somewhere by ourselves without people watching.

SHARRONA: There's always someone watching.

RAMU: Dwain?

SHARRONA: God, silly.

RAMU: God is watching us?

SHARRONA: Yeah, but not for kicks. I mean, the universe isn't run by some big old perv.

RAMU: What do you mean?

SHARRONA: I mean, the same God who made the rose and the ocean, he made me. And my body is made to have sex, just like the rosebud is made to open.

RAMU: Wow.

Now that Ramu knows what is expected of him, he knows he can't do it. He's looking for his old job, back with the curry-slingers, and finds his old boss doing a catering gig at a swanky New York townhouse. Lexi (Marisa Tomei) is having her birthday party, and her mother Chantal has decided to simultaneously spoil and mock Lexi by giving her a spiritual birthday with a real guru as the entertainment. Lexi, OM-ing intently on the bathroom floor next to the commode, complains piteously to her brother Lars, who is trying to talk her out of hiding, that she didn't want a swami, she wanted "a Tibetan gathering with a Rinpoche."

The Swami retained by the curry-slinger, though, has been imbibing one too many cocktails in the kitchen, and passes out. A sharp slap to the Swami's face stimulates only a brief return to consciousness, punctuated by the sincere declaration, "I swear she was sixteen!" Ramu, showing up fortuitously at this dangerous moment, is drafted into the Swami role. Swathed in silk, topped with a turban, surrounded by questioning socialites, Ramu lacks only one thing -- wisdom. Fishing around in his busy brain for something profound, the only words that come to him are Sharrona's:

RAMU: God, is it hot in here. God. God wants us to have sex. And if God wants us to have sex, then, well, it can't be bad because the universe isn't run by a big old perv.

LARS: Glad he cleared that up.

RAMU: (Touching an older woman on the temples and peering into her eyes) Your naked body is like a costume that you wear to be yourself. Be comfortable in your nakedness. The most powerful sexual organ God gave you is your brain. Think about it. Are you thinking?

OLD LADY: (Slowly and with deep sincerity) My whole body is about to think.

RAMU: And like roses are made to open, so must you. You must open your rosebud.

RAMU: Dance is like love.

[Electronic backbeat kicks in]

RAMU: Join me. Follow your inner beat.

RASPHAL: Is he doing the Macarena?

VIJAY: Looks like it.

LARS: Wait, isn't that the ...

LEXI: I think it's one of those dervish, spiritual, trance-dance things.

And indeed it is one of those trance-dance type of things. Managing him as her lover, and the Guru of Sex, Lexi catapults Ramu into the big leagues of guru-dom. Vijay steps into the role of secretary, and begins to manage Ramu like the hot property he is. Meanwhile, Ramu sets up a series of secret meetings with Sharrona to learn, so he tells her, how to be a porn star. Sharrona educates him into her little story of beauty, the one she tells herself when she works. Ramu takes those little stories and resells them to the rich and jaded like vitamins that conquer ennui. And the lessons become more sincere, more revelatory, of the inner being of a person who gives their sexuality up for display.

Sharrona, it turns out, has a double life, too. She's dating a Catholic boy who's a total virgin. That means he doesn't watch porn. That means he's never seen Sharrona on video. But in the middle of their pre-wedding dinner with her fiance's family, some asshole at the bar has just got to come over to the happy family table and destroy it all. Of course, that destruction has a happy ending, because her Catholic boy is really not so hetero after all as we learn when things start working themselves out.

Boy, there's not too many more beans to spill before the whole movie's revealed, so I'll stop now. You can find the screenplay here: THE GURU SCREENPLAY. I have not even mentioned the incredible recreations of Bollywood sets, costumes, song and choreography. Rich, resplendent, sumptuous, etcetera. Two nipples up for this hilarious exploration of innocence in sex and corruption in religion!
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