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KEN EAGLE FEATHER

the Wanderling

In a rather indepth question and answer interview between himself and one Lisa Roggow, Ken Eagle Feather discusses Nagualism, its relationship to Shamanism, the Toltec path, non patterning, his written works, and his ten-year apprenticeship with Don Juan Matus. Roggow opens her interview with Eagle Feather an introduction that goes something like:

Eagle Feather's first book, Travelling with Power recounts his ten-year apprenticeship with Don Juan Matus, the mysterious shaman-sorcerer teacher of the best selling author Carlos Castaneda. His second book, A Toltec Path, is "the exploration of Castaneda's books and the verification of their teachings through personal experience." He further describes it as "an autobiography of sorts, where presenting the knowledge is presenting myself." With his third book, Tracking Freedom, Eagle Feather scrutinises the Toltec system as a means to enlightenment, openly deconstructing that path, dissecting its pitfalls and foibles along the way. This is, as Eagle Feather sees it, all part of being a good Toltec.

Roggow then goes into a series of twenty or so questions of which two of her questions, in relation to his relationship with Don Juan Matus, cut to the hardcore essence of it all:

LR:----- Ken, how long have you been on the Toltec path? KEF:--- I started on a daily basis in 1973 when I was in the hospital.

WHICH BEGS THE QUESTION: DID DON JUAN DIE IN 1973 AS WRITTEN BY CASTANEDA OR NOT? If such was the case, an anytime death of Don Juan during the year 1973 would NOT have left a very large window for Eagle Feather to meet, know, and/or study under

the shaman-sorcerer for any appreciable length of time --- especially so, any sort of an extended relationship such as the so-stated, above, ten-year apprenticeship. However, before we jump the gun, lets explore the situation a little further: Carlos Castaneda, the author and original source of the highly successful series of Don Juan books, writes in several places among those books that the Yaqui Indian shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus was born in 1891 and died in 1973. According to Castaneda he met Don Juan in the late spring or early mid-summer of 1960 as chronicled in their now infamous Nogales Greyhound Bus Station Meeting. Castaneda apprenticed under Don Juan and over the years wrote a dozen books covering their experiences. During that period --- late spring, early midsummer 1960 - 1973 --- except for Castaneda's word, nobody seems able to confirm or prove a meeting with him under any circumstances. For sure he was never produced by Castaneda or anyone on the fringes claiming to have met him able to produce him. Even in the Introduction Scenes, written in Castaneda's own hand, wherein Castaneda's Road Trip colleague he calls Bill and that Castaneda states put he and the old white haired Indian together in the first place, hedged his bets as to or if the old Indian was or was not Don Juan Matus. Castaneda writes:

Bill said convincingly that he had encountered people like him before, people who gave the impression of knowing a great deal. In his judgment, he said, such people were not worth the trouble, because sooner or later one could obtain the same information from someone else who did not play hard to get. He said that he had neither patience nor time for old fogies, and that it was possible that the old man was only presenting himself as being knowledgeable about herbs, when in reality he knew as little as the next man.

In the third book of his series, Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Castaneda writes that after returning to Los Angeles he "prepared himself for six months" and when he "felt ready" he went back looking for Don Juan, however NOT to or around Nogales, Arizona, but Yuma, Arizona. Citing a date during the winter recess at the end of the fall semester 1960 (i.e., Saturday, December 17, 1960), after allowing a full six months to lapse without ever seeing or talking with Don Juan since their bus station encounter Castaneda writes:

"I found his house after making long and taxing inquiries among the local Indians. It was early afternoon when I arrived and parked in front of it. I saw him sitting on a wooden milk crate. He seemed to recognize me and greeted me as I got out of my car."

Previously, in A Separate Reality (1971), Castaneda had written he and his experienced driving around the southwest guide, Bill, had driven around for a whole day six months before and could not find "the house of an 'eccentric' Mexican Indian who lived in the area" (Nogales/Sonora), but Castaneda on his own, after simply asking a couple local Indians in a effort that he calls taxing inquiries, drove right up in front of Don Juan's house in Yuma. Which opens the door for me that we are talking the posibility of TWO different people here. C. Scott Littleton, Professor of Anthropology, Emeritus, and former Chair of the Department of Anthropology at Occidental College in Los Angeles, California, whose notoriety precedes him as an expert on the Battle of Los Angeles, wherein a giant airborne object of unknown origin overflew L.A. during the war years, knew Castaneda well having attended UCLA graduate school with him in the same department at the same time. Littleton recalls being told by Castaneda personally that he never saw Don Juan again after an incident in 1973 wherein Castaneda and two other followers of Don Juan jumped into the abyss off the top of a flat, barren mountain on the western slopes of the Sierra Madre in central Mexico. He told Littleton as well, that Don Juan died shortly thereafter. So, did Don Juan die in 1973? Or could he even die in the traditional sense or at all? For more on that please see Footnote: [1] Footnote [1]

DID DON JUAN DIE IN 1973 OR ANYOTHER TIME? OR CAN DON JUAN EVEN DIE?

Setting any potential or possible biases aside, IF we start with the premise for our purposes here that Don Juan Matus even existed in the first place --- as presented to us by Carlos Castaneda in his series of books --- you will find in the in the preface to The Second Ring of Power (1977), refering to events cited by C. Scott Littleton above, that led up to and transpired circa 1973, Castaneda writes:

"A flat, barren mountaintop on the western slopes of the Sierra Madre in central Mexico was the setting for my final meeting with don Juan and don Genaro; and their other two apprentices, Pablito and Nestor. The solemnity and the scope of what took place there left no doubt in my mind that our apprenticeships had come to their concluding moment, and that I was indeed seeing don Juan and don Genaro for the last time. Toward the end we all said good-bye to one another, and then Pablito and I jumped together from the top of the mountain into an abyss."
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About two years later, still writing in The Second Ring of Power, unsure of what actually happened or what followed as a result of the events at the abyss, Castaneda goes to Mexico to see Pablito's mother and asks about her son:

"Tell me, where is Pablito?" I asked her with a sudden wave of apprehension. "Oh, he's gone to the mountains," she responded in a noncommittal tone, and moved away from me. "And where is Nestor?" She rolled her eyes as if to show her indifference. "They are together in the mountains," she said in the same tone. I felt genuinely relieved and told her that I had known without the shadow of a doubt that they were all right. She glanced at me and smiled. A wave of happiness and ebullience came upon me, and I embraced her. She boldly returned the embrace and held me. That act was so outlandish that it took my breath away. Her body was rigid. I sensed an extraordinary strength in her. My heart began to pound. I gently tried to push her away as I asked her if Nestor was still seeing don Genaro and don Juan. During our farewell meeting don Juan had expressed doubts that Nestor was ready to finish his apprenticeship. "Genaro has left forever," she said letting go of me. She fretted nervously with the edge of her blouse. "How about don Juan?" "The Nagual is gone too," she said, puckering her lips.

Pablito's mother goes on to tell Castaneda that not just he and Pablito jumped into the abyss that night, but so too, within moments, both Don Juan and Don Genaro jumped into the abyss as well. Castaneda tells her he has no clue what happened to them and she replies:

"Then I will tell you. I can't deny you anything. The Nagual and Genaro went back to the same place they came from; to the other world. When their time was up, they simply stepped out into the darkness out there; and since they did not want to come back, the darkness of the night swallowed them up"

In an explanation of the above, during an interview by Keith Thompson published in the New Age Journal, March/April 1994, Thompson queried Castaneda with the following:

"Earlier you mentioned reaching the end of the road, and now you're talking about the end of your time with don Juan. Where is he now?" "He's gone. He disappeared." "Without a clue?" "Don Juan told me he was going to fulfill the sorcerer's dream of leaving this world and entering into "unimaginable dimensions." He displaced his assemblage point from its fixation in the conventional human world. We would call it combusting from the inside. It's an alternative to dying. Either they bury you six feet deep in the poor flowers or you burn. Don Juan chose burning."

As for entering into unimaginable dimensions and combusting from the inside, in the history of events as they unfold in the world such an event is not totally without precedent. For example, extrapolating from the Bible, in II Kings 2, when it was TIME for the God of the Bible to take the prophet Elias up to heaven, Elias traveled with his friend Elisha to the Jordan river. Taking his mantle, he rolled it up and struck the water of the river which inturn divided, enabling both cross over on dry ground. As they continued on, a flaming chariot with flaming horses came between them and Elias was taken up to heaven in a strong Vortex like WHIRLWIND OF FIRE. Elisha picked up the mantle which had fallen from his master and the spirit of Elias rested upon Elisha and he became his successor as a prophet. In one of many parallels, the same as Elishia picked up the mantle that had fallen from his master and became master, Don Juan's teacher Osorio is said to have picked up the mantle from his teacher, Elias Ulloa, thus becoming the master. The same is such then for the outcome between Don Juan and Castaneda as the taught becomes the master.

The question I would ask is, IF the structure of the universe is such that it is possible for Elias to be taken up in a whirlwind of fire when it was histime, then why not Don Juan when, as Pablito's mother cites, HIS time was up?

As for Castandea, his Death Certificate indicates HE died April 27, 1998 at age 72. His Obituary announcing same did not show up until a month and a half later, June 19, 1998 (both documents can be reached through CARLOS CASTANEDA: Timeline). In the Los Angeles Times release, author, J.R. Moehringer, writes:

No funeral was held; no public service of any kind took place. The author was cremated at once and his ashes were spirited away to Mexico, according to the Culver City mortuary that handled his remains.

Interesting is it not what Castaneda says about Don Juan, "Either they bury you six feet deep in the poor flowers or you burn. Don Juan chose burning." In a sense Castaneda, a self-professed inline legacy to Don Juan's line of shamans, as mentioned below, burnt too --- except he was was cremated and his ashes were spirited away to Mexico --- albeit, a little less spiritually, being commerically burnt by a mortuary. In a Long Island NY Newsday newspaper article dated Sunday October 21, 2001, Sandy McIntosh writes:

"But when Castaneda actually departed in 1998, it was not as he had predicted. His physician, Angelica Duenas, whom I had befriended at one of his seminars and who signed the death certificate, told me what happened. "I have many patients," she said. "They die. He died like everyone else."

Castaneda says that Don Juan came from a lineage of sorcerers that was purported to be twenty-five generations long. Castaneda apprenticed under him and according to Castaneda became part of that twenty-five generations long lineage. In describing HIS teacher, Don Juan used the word Diablero. Castaneda states in his writings that diablero is a term used only by the Sonoran Indians. It refers to an evil person who practises black sorcery and is capable of transforming himself into an animal - a bird, a dog, a coyote, or any other creature. In that Castaneda studied under Don Juan and is included in his lineage it can be extrapolated that both either are or have strong influences from diableros. In a question answer session Castaneda asks an old Indian if there are none today (diableros), or that there never were any. The old Indian responds:
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"At one time there were, yes. It is common knowledge. Everybody knows that. But the people were very afraid of them and had them all killed." "Who killed them?" "All the people of the tribe. The last diablero I knew about was S- -(at this point Castaneda leaves the full name out in the text using only a capital "S" and a dash). He killed dozens- maybe even hundreds of people with his sorcery. We couldn't put up with that and the people got together and took him by surprise one night and burned him alive." (source)

All indications are thus then, that diableros DO and CAN die, including Don Juan Matus and Carlos Castaneda. It should be noted that when Castaneda died, five of his closest disciples made out wills, disconnected their telephones, and vanished at around the same time. Three of the followers were known as "the witches" and thought by many to have "burned from within." The bones of at least one of them, Blue Scout, was found scattered all over a remote area of Death Valley several years later. The fate of the others are unknown.

There is a possible caveat to all this Don Juan having died in 1973 stuff as reported by Castaneda. In that Eagle Feather came upon the book publishing scene while Castaneda himself was still in the process of writing books about Don Juan, there may have been a vested interest in Castaneda having Don Juan suddenly being "killed off." Regardless of when any book by Castaneda was published date-wise, one way or the other the year 1973 would have to have had transpired for Castaneda to know that Don Juan died in 1973 and be able write about it. I have no reason to dispute what Castaneda has to say in his books as cited above, but it is kind of convenient that Don Juan just happened to die, according to Castaneda, when Eagle Feather showed up. The problem with such a scenario is that Eagle Feather's first book, TRAVELING WITH POWER: The Exploration and Development of Perception, although it was rejected 13 times over an unknown period of time, it was not published and released to the general public until 1992, nineteen years AFTER the death of Don Juan as cited by Castaneda. THUS SAID, DID EAGLE FEATHER REALLY MEET DON JUAN IN 1973 --- OR AT ANY OTHER TIME?

In regards to Don Juan reportedly passing from the scene in 1973, capsulized here but explored more indepth in the Foonote below where Castaneda, in a 1994
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interview, speaking of the death of Don Juan states: "Either they bury you six feet deep in the poor flowers or you burn. Don Juan chose burning." Now, in a possible, albeit NOT total contradiction to Ken Eagle Feather being in the right chronological time-frame reference to have met and interacted with Don Juan for any length of time prior to his passing in the first place, please note that Eagle Feather specifically states he "started on a daily basis in 1973." Started on a daily basis, NOT started. Giving Eagle Feather the benefit of the doubt, the key to it all is "on a daily basis," not when he actually started. Eagle Feather never states when he actually started, only when he started on a daily basis. Although questionable, a big difference. So too, there is a difference between start, started, starting and having met. Eagle Feather's own account on how and when he met Don Juan Matus in the first place, is clouded --- most of what he has to say regarding the meeting is somewhat ambiguous. He joined the U.S. Navy at age 17 and served in Vietnam, and, although he was in a military hospital in 1973, it's possible he could have met Don Juan somewhere along the line. In TRAVELING WITH POWER: The Exploration and Development of Perception (1992), he says he met an "Old Indian" on the side of a road, and later again under other circumstances. From those meetings he assumes the "Old Indian" is Don Juan Matus, although he himself admits that for years he doubted whether the man he met was THE Don Juan Matus found in Castaneda's series of books. After a long contemplation process and a continued indepth observation of Omens he concludes in his own mind --- and for the reader -- that the "Old Indian" he met, was in fact, none other than Castaneda's Don Juan Matus. In ON THE TOLTEC PATH: A Practical Guide to the Teachings of don Juan Matus, Carlos Castaneda, and Other Toltec Seers (1996) Eagle Feather elaborates his meeting with Don Juan somewhat, offering some clarification:

"I first met don Juan while walking down Speedway Boulevard, a main avenue in Tucson. Late for class at a local Univerisity, I simply gawked at him and continued a hurried pace. When I arrived at class, a flood of energy swept through me, indicating that the very poised Indian I had passed was don Juan. A couple of days passed and I saw him again, this time standing near a small market on the outskirts of town. I approached him and held a very short conversation; I was too imtimidated to remain long in his presence. "Over the next few years, our paths crossed many times. Each time, he offered a lesson regarding the mysteries of awareness."

Castaneda personally tells his friend Professor Littleton that he never saw Don Juan again after he, Castaneda, jumped into the abyss on the western slopes of the Sierra
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Madre --- an event cited to have transpired in 1973. As almost everybody knows who has even the faintest idea about Castaneda's series of Don Juan related books, that he continued to write them, book after book, for another twenty years --- without ever documenting any new face-to-face meetings beyond the 1973 date. Eagle Feather was in a military hospital in 1973, as well as been in the Navy, having joined at age 17. So too, some time or the other he was attending a local university in Tucson. He told Lisa Roggow in the above interview that because of reasons emanating from his 1973 hospital stay, basically talking with some other people on the ward, he got pushed onto the Toltec path. In his book he goes on to say he met Don Juan walking along a street in Tucson while on his way to class at the university (i.e., Speedway Boulevard. It is the main drag that borders the north side of the University of Arizona, Tucson campus). But, when? Before or after his hospital stay? First of all, if it was before, there would be an overlap in time when BOTH he and Castaneda knew and were interacting with Don Juan --- and secondly, if it WAS indeed before, why the need of people in the hospital ward to push him onto the path? Why would the influence of meeting Don Juan himself, face-to-face in real life and in person, not be enough? If it was after, Eagle Feather, who claims a ten-year apprenticeship under Don Juan, writes: "Over the next few years, our paths crossed many times." If those aforementioned "few years" transpired AFTER the jumping into the abyss event of 1973, remember, Professor Littleton was told by Castaneda himself that Don Juan, following Castaneda's jump into the abyss, died shortly thereafter. Castaneda substantiates it quite clearly inThe Second Ring of Power (1977). Again, I refer you to Footnote: [1] Noticeably, where I mention in my writings about an "excursion deep into a remote part of the southern New Mexico desert" making, as I state above, the location possibly difficult to find, Castaneda writes about a town (Yuma) that you can drive right up in front of Don Juan's house and park. It leads me to believe we are talking about two different places and most likely two different people. If such is the case, then the total authenticity of ANY specific meeting scenario begins to dissolve. If the possibility exits that there were/was TWO different people like I surmise, then which of the two, if any or either, did Ken Eagle Feather, Castaneda, or anybody else interact with? Still others say someone like Alex Apostolides, of whom I address the possibility, or lack of same, in The Tree, if not Don Juan was the role model for him. So then, taken altogether, how would someone like Tezlcazi Guitimea Cachora, who claims to be the "real" Don Juan Matus, fit in? Please see:

The Old Man In the Desert

Continuing, Don Juan's teacher, Julian Osorio, was said by Castaneda to have died at age 107. The following is from the Julian Osorio link:

"If Osorio was born in 1871 that would have made him around 77 years old at the time of my visit to the old man in the desert. Osorio reportedly was never cured of his tuberculosis and lived to the ripe old age of 107, 30 years beyond the 77 years of my meeting --- although how Castaneda arrived at the 107 figure is not clear as Don Juan reportedly left the world in 1973 and for all practical purposes Castaneda ended his apprenticeship with him well before that."

Castaneda writes that Don Juan Matus was born in 1891[2] and that he was twenty years old when he met Osorio. He also writes that Osorio was twice Don Juan's age when the two met, making Osorio 40 years old --- hence then, making Osorio having been born in 1871. Breaking partway into the quote, it goes on to say:

"(... the old man in the desert had died) citing the night of October 31, 1978. During the year 1978 an unusual TWO new moon's in one month occurrence transpired and it just so happened to occur in October, with the second of the darkened new moons on, of all things, All Hallow's Eve, Halloween night, October 31st, the same night of the old man's death --- a major convergence of conditions and coincidences."[3]

Interestlingly enough, it should be noted that the 1871 year of birth calculated for Osorio and the death of the white haired old Indian on October 31, 1978 as written in the above quote and who also had tuberculosis the same as reported of Osorio, comes out to be the same 107 year old age as quoted by Castaneda for the death of Osorio. Quite the coincidence of numbers from a variety of different sources if none of it is not so.[4] Footnote [2]

Carlos Castaneda speaking of Don Juan Matus in, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (1968), Introduction:

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"All he said was that he (Don Juan Matus) had been born in the Southwest in 1891; that he had spent nearly all his life in Mexico; that in 1900 his family was exiled by the Mexican government to central Mexico along with thousands of other Sonoran Indians; and that he had lived in central and southern Mexico until 1940."

Thirty years later, in MAGICAL PASSES: The Practical Wisdom of the Shamans of Ancient Mexico (1998), Castaneda writes a similar or like theme:

"Don Juan was an Indian who was born in Yuma, Arizona. His father was a Yaqui Indian from Sonora, Mexico, and his mother was presumably a Yuma Indian from Arizona. Don Juan lived in Arizona until he was ten years old (1901). He was then taken by his father to Sonora, Mexico, where they were caught in the endemic Yaqui wars against the Mexicans. His father was killed, and as a ten-year-old child, don Juan ended up in Southern Mexico, where he grew up with relatives. "At the age of twenty (1911), he came in contact with a master sorcerer. His name was Julian Osorio. He introduced don Juan into a lineage of sorcerers that was twenty-five generations long."

Taking into account that Don Juan existed in real life as Castaneda writes him and that he was born in 1891 on one of the Indian reservations around Yuma, then the possibilities of those who could match his identity are very few in number. Although I have not researched the the conclusions personally, I have been told census records of the era indicate only a handful of male Indian newborns in the Yuma reservation areas for the 1890 census and 1900 census, which would seem to narrow Don Juan's identity or existance down to a few names. The problem is Arizona was not a state in those days but a Territory. How accurate census records would be one way or the other or even if there are any is not known. If Don Juan was born in 1891 and there are records, he would NOT show up in the 1890 census anyway having been born one year after the census was taken. If he moved out of the census area --- to Mexico or anyplace else --- prior to the taking of the 1900 census, he would NOT show up in the 1900 census either. In contrast to the born in the Southwest or the born in Yuma thesis previously cited as written by Castaneda, it should be noted that he has also written, refering to what his road trip and bus station colleague Bill says, the following:

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"The friend who had introduced me to Don Juan (that is, Bill) explained later that the old man was not a native of Arizona, where we met, but was a Yaqui Indian from Sonora, Mexico."

See Footnote [1] to Albert Franklin Banta as it makes reference to the father of Don Juan Matus assisting Banta, a famous western tracker, capturing a fugitive in Mexico. FOOTNOTE [3]: To the majority of people such an occurrence most likely does not mean much. However, for the occult, voodoo and others of similar ilk, such a rare event as having the darkened second new moon of a two new moon month happen on, of all nights, All Hallow's Eve, is a convergence of major proportions that carries a deep significance. It means POWER in the hands to those who can so channel it, COSMIC POWER. Any event perpetrated during such a narrow band or limited time period carries a destiny with it that similar events at another time won't or can't. As to All Hallow's Eve, All Saints Day, otherwise known as All Hallows Day (hallowed means sanctified or holy), falls on November 1st. The evening prior to All Hallows Day, October 31st, was the time of intense activity, both human and supernatural. Originally people celebrated All Hallow's Eve as a time of the wandering dead, but over time the supernatural beings came to be either dominated by or thought of as evil. To propitiate those spirits (and their masked impersonators) people began setting out gifts of food and drink. Over time All Hallow's Eve became Hallow Evening, which eventually became Hallowe'en. See ZEN, THE BUDDHA, AND SHAMANISM. Scroll down to to the sub-section titled Once In a Blue Moon.

As well as going to the above link, for an even more indepth elaboration please visit Footnote [3] at CARLOS CASTANEDA: Don Juan Matus and the Nogales Greyhound Bus Station. FOOTNOTE [4]: In the final paragraph of the main text I write:

"Interestlingly enough, it should be noted that the 1871 year of birth calculated for Osorio and the death of the white haired old Indian on October 31, 1978 as written in the above quote and who also had tuberculosis the same as reported of Osorio,
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comes out to be the same 107 year old age as quoted by Castaneda for the death of Osorio. Quite the coincidence of numbers from a variety of different sources if none of it is not so."

The question continually comes up, in that I say Osorio lived to 107 years of age on this page as well as several other of my Castaneda/Don Juan related pages, where DOES it show up that Castaneda says it? The following quote is found in WHEEL OF TIME: The Shamans of Ancient Mexico (1998) in the Commentary section related to The Fire From Within (1984):

"The nagual Elias didn't have great expectations about the actor, who was lazy, slovenly, self-indulgent, and perhaps even a coward. The nagual was quite surprised when the next day at five in the morning he found the actor waiting for him at the edge of the town. He took him to the mountains, and in time, the actor became the nagual Julian- a tubercular man who was never cured, but who lived to be perhaps one hundred and seven years old, always walking along the edge of the abyss."

In the 1984 book The Fire From Within, of which the Commentaries attest to, Castaneda doesn't mention one thing or the other as to what age Osorio may or may not have lived. However, by the time his 1998 book comes out Castaneda is saying (in the above quote) Osorio lived to be perhaps one-hundred and seven years old. That is because sometime between 1984 and 1998 Castaneda must have somehow became privy to the fact that Osorio had died. Not knowing the specific month, day or year (October 31, 1978), he hedges his bets by using the word "perhaps" as in "(Osorio) lived to be perhaps one hundred and seven years old." THE FOUR SYMBOLIC ENEMIES ON THE PATH OF LEARNING According to Don Juan Matus there are four inner obstacles a man of knowledge must overcome: fear, clarity, power, and old age. These four elements are both obstacles as well as necessary preconditions. Taken together the links below will help offer special added insights into understanding and alleviating some of the hardships faced when confronting the four obstacles along the path. You will notice there is a heavy ring of Buddhism in the links below. Some people would argue quite stringently that Buddhism and Shamanism are for the most part nowhere related and to draw an anology would be creating a thin line. However, the coincidence of characteristics and striking similarities between Buddhist adepts and Shamans and Shamanism has been studied and outlined quite thoroughly by the likes of Mircea Eliade in his monograph, Shamanism: Archaic Techniques of Ecstacy. For example, the abilities of the Arhat relating to the sixfold knowledge of the worthy ones that includes not only the ability similar to the Cloud Shaman to
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appear and disappear at will, but also the oft cited case in Buddhism and Zen by the Venerable Pindola Bharadvaja where the venerable Arhat was adomished by the Buddha for flying and performing miraculous acts infront of the faithful. For more, consider the very beginning root-source or Shamanism:

The word shaman, used internationally, has its origin in manch-tangu and has reached the ethnologic vocabulary through Russian. The word originated from saman (xaman), derived from the verb scha-, "to know", so shaman means someone who knows, is wise, a sage. Further ethnologic investigations shows that the true origin for the word Shaman can be tracked from the Sanskrit initially, then through Chinese-Buddhist mediation to the manch-tangu, indicating a much deeper but now overlooked connection between early Buddhism and Shamanism generally. In Pali it is schamana, in Sanskrit sramana translated to something like "buddhist monk, ascetic". The intermediate Chinese term is scha-men. (source)

Continuing: 1. FEAR FEAR IN ENLIGHTENMENT AND ZEN 2. CLARITY THE AWAKENING EXPERIENCE IN THE MODERN ERA 3. POWER POWER OF THE SHAMAN 4. OLD AGE THE DEATH DEFIER

AN INTERVIEW WITH KEN EAGLE FEATHER

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by Lisa Roggow

LR: Ken, how long have you been on the Toltec path? KEF: I started on a daily basis in 1973 when I was in the hospital. I was in the military and had a bleeding ulcer and a couple of other problems with my digestive tract. I'd been in the hospital for about 3 months, and in talking with some other people on the ward I got pushed onto the path. The doctor wanted to perform surgery and keep me on medication. I didn't want to do that. So by reading Castaneda's book Journey to Ixtlan (1972) and then Tales of Power (1974) later, and then by engaging the exercises in those books, I eventually healed myself. For the first few years, staying with the path was forced because every time I quit doing the exercises the pain would come back, and as soon as I started doing the exercises again the pain would go away. And then after a few years I completely healed myself, and now I can eat pizza with the best of them. LR: For someone new to the path, will it necessitate a change of lifestyle? KEF: Eventually there will come a time that you have to redefine your life, yes. Now I'm not saying that everything will change your life circumstances may not change but certainly your attitudes and the way you approach your life will change. But it's been my experience that most people will have a radical change in what they are doing, in addition to how they go about doing it. What then occurs is between the person and Spirit. LR: Can you explain the term Nagualism? How is this different from Shamanism? KEF: Nagualism is probably a select class of Shamanism; a certain variety of it. It has academic roots going way back to when anthropologists were working with indigenous tribes in Mexico. Don Juan, Castaneda's teacher, uses it to mean a specific class of teaching. So even his definition is different than the academic's. And so one way to relate to it is to consider that there is a lot of shamanic flavour in it, but then there are a lot of things that are different. For instance, you don't necessarily build medicine wheels; you don't necessarily have the trappings of a pipe and feathers. it's very pristine, very streamlined. And also very rough and ready. it's not heavy on the spirituality as most people might define it. It is very individualistic, but yet you work in small teams. it's very, very rigorous and it's aimed not so much to build a world view, such as [is] found in Shamanism, at least in mainstream versions of it, but to actually work on developing perception. There will come a time when you will leave the teachings behind, because to hold on to them would pin down perception. And so there are different stages of growth along the path: from
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apprentice to practitioner to what don Juan calls a person of knowledge, someone who has grown beyond the teachings. These people are in an entirely different relation with the world. They have found freedom, and are in a state of complete being.

LR: Is Nagualism a religion? KEF: Only in the sense that it contains a philosophical structure. This means it is a way to accumulate knowledge. But the way you learn, and what you learn, are biased by the type of structure. So, in a sense, structure is a set of beliefs. A person of knowledge is someone who has used different structures, different sets of beliefs to learn the costs and benefits of structures. By evolving beyond the need for structure, the person has figuratively and literally grown beyond belief. One of the tools to help along this evolution is the petty tyrant. This is a person in your life who pushes every button you have. So if you are working with somebody, especially if they are in authority over you, and if they are a little harsh, that's a good thing. Because it makes you work on your own shortcomings. It makes you pull your dirty laundry out of the hamper. Keep in mind that every time you rail and scream at a person you are just projecting onto them a trait within yourself. In order to discharge that energy within you accurately and ruthlessly, so that you may grow into new connections with the world and Spirit, you need to assess your complete circumstances with absolutely no pity, either for others or for yourself. that's when you are on the mark, when you engage energy on that level. The petty tyrant helps to get you there, forces you to work on your own stuff to bring yourself further to light.

LR: So basically what you are saying is that petty tyrants and other kinds of challenges help transform things like fear into power, or confusion into a spiritual clarity? KEF: Right, definitely in terms of Fear and Clarity. It is interesting that you bring those up because those are two steps along the path that require working directly with energy. Fear is a lack of suppleness in the energy body. This lack of movement translates through the physical body as fear, when it really is just being stuck. One way to fight fear is this: any time you come upon something and the only thing that keeps you from doing it is fear, then your decision is automatically made. You look it straight in the eye and proceed in that direction. From that struggle what you find is that fear is a lack of momentum in your energy body, a lack of fluidity. The energy body is stagnant; it has barnacles and is calcified. The more you jolt your energy body with the new experiences you gain by fighting fear, the more you awaken it. Fighting what was a lack of momentum then delivers you to clarity. The problem with this is you now think you know what's really going on, when all you have [done] is developed a new set of thoughts about what is going on, an enhanced set of
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beliefs. You then set the stage for becoming a metaphysical (or New Age) fundamentalist. Instead of talking about the material world, you get to talk about the spiritual world, complete with reincarnation, psychic phenomena, and alternative healing. But while you've expanded your world, a grand accomplishment, you haven't grown beyond belief. So the discipline for managing clarity is to not use it, and to pretend that you are still fighting fear.

LR: In Tracking Freedom you write about non patterning, which seems to be at the heart of the Toltec Way. To me this is reminiscent of a Buddhist-like non-attachment. It effects physical, emotional, and mentally based reality as we know it, almost as if you are getting back to a Platonic ideal about things, scrutinising that Platonic ideal and then releasing even that conceptual hold. Would you say this is true? KEF: Yes, that's true, and it delivers you to fully understanding that which you will never fully understand. . . . So, non patterning is not putting the world into form. This includes yourself. Pure non patterning means you are not interpreting anything. And when you do interpret something it's on a practical level, to communicate something, for instance. The problem is that by interpreting the world you then hold on to your definitions, your interpretations. Optimally, however, you begin to realize that your world is just a set of mental and emotional constructs about reality. The further you go into reality, the clearer this becomes. Just remember that your enhanced clarity is also your prison. We really don't know anything about what this magnificence called creation is. It cannot be encapsulated. And so non patterning is very much a core Toltec teaching that is designed to constantly keep you open, keep awareness open, and keep perception open.

LR: Some traditions might approach this by divorcing themselves from the world. How does a Toltec live in the world and still stay so deeply within in order to do this work? KEF: that's interesting, because Don Juan says you really have never learned your lessons if you can't do it in the world. This brings in the discipline of a Path with Heart. This is a path intended to bring you to life. A Path with Heart is formed by deliberately selecting a number of things that you want to involve yourself with: relationships, vocations, hobbies, arts, anything that really connects your heart with the world. The criteria for selection is peace, joy, and strength. You don't worry about money; you don't worry about if you are going to be socially acceptable. If an activity gives you peace, of your Path with Heart. When you have a number of these, you are on your Path with Heart. I have never seen a situation where a person who has a well-developed Path with Heart doesn't have their livelihood taken care of. They get their money; it's just that the emphasis isn't on money. That doesn't mean that money is a bad thing. It is an interesting form of power that can accomplish grand things. Just keep it very balanced, and within its place. Your income should be supportive of your path, not the defining element of it. So if you think it is part of
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your path, you may have the wrong relationship with your heart. If you think you must have money to accomplish some grand goal, say, to help humanity, it may just be your self-importance. So, like non patterning, the Path of Heart is also an essential feature of Toltec structures. It is something that awakens you and gives you joy as you walk over the earth. Then petty tyrants, no pity, and fighting fear are all exercises, skills to quicken the process so that you can achieve a radical transformation in the life you are living now. They give you a fighting chance to claim your freedom.

LR: What about personal power? It seems that the Toltecs actively and openly engage in acquiring and cultivating their personal power. This is really in contrast to many religions, and yet its use in Nagualism seems to reflect the reasons that other paths avoid it. KEF: In the modern Toltec world, personal power means having enough energy to continually be more and more aware. In the ancient structures, several thousand years ago, it meant having more power than the next guy, competition, greed, manipulation, these kinds of things. When the Toltec empire got laid to waste by Indian wars and the Inquisition, the remnant went underground and revamped the system. They introduced ethics and from that ethical standpoint a new meaning of personal power evolved. So it relates to being more aware. For that you need more energy, which means you have awakened more of your energy body. That gives you your energy, and your Path with Heart generates energy. And from that energy you become more aware. . . .

LR: While most systems talk about their past masters in terms of highest respect and devotion, not that this is untrue of Nagualism, Nagualism openly talks about the mistakes of past Toltecs. Do you see this as a sign of an evolving path? KEF: This is definitely an evolving path, and I think one of the distinctions of the Toltec path of knowledge. In some systems, you have a teacher for life, someone to give you a gentle, or sometimes not-so-gentle, reminder of what you're really supposed to be up to. Toltecs, like Don Juan, grab you by the scruff of the neck, work you over up and down, in and out, then set you on your way to fend for yourself. Personally, I appreciate this style of teaching. it's very individualistic, very responsible, very empowering. It lets you assess what your teacher says and does, then figure out if you want to continue exactly that way. Or perhaps you'll even want to get off the path entirely. The effect is similar: the system evolves, as it's not static to a given set of practices. There is nothing to adhere to except the unrelenting drive to develop perception. In this way, you can grow beyond belief.

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LR: How do you see your work, and in particular Tracking Freedom, contributing to this evolution? KEF: Tracking Freedom is the culmination of a learning task don Juan gave me over twenty years ago. He directed me to write books about his teachings. In doing so, I earnestly tried to present views that would crystallise don Juan's teachings, and make them applicable to a variety of situations. For instance, I aimed to make his teachings realisable in the daily world for anyone who was bold enough, or nuts enough, to travel this path. I also wanted to demonstrate how a philosophy works: how it expands perception, how it hems in perception. By understanding what we're working with, we stand a better chance of not getting bogged down in our amazing concoctions about reality. We stand a better chance of tracking freedom.

THE OLD MAN IN THE DESERT

"We were on one of our excursions deep into a remote part of the southern New Mexico desert to visit a very strange man my Uncle was somehow associated with. After arrival the two sat together in the shade outside the man's shack and talked for a good part of the day while I either played with the dogs or sat in the cab of the truck fiddling with the radio." The Wanderling, from The Boy and the Giant Feather

Was the old man I met in the desert --- who had tuberculosis not unlike Julian Osorio, the teacher of Don Juan Matus --- ANDOsorio, the actor who according to Carlos Castaneda during one of his theatrical tours met Elias Ulloa, and who inturn, transmitted to Osorio the knowledge of his lineage
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of sorcerers and thus then down to Don Juan and onto Castaneda --ONEand the SAME person?

The old man in the desert attested to in the above was neither Native American nor American Indian like the Navajo or Hopi I had been used to interacting with in most of the travels I participated in with my Uncle in the desert southwest. Neither was he brown Mexican or Anglo white. However, as the ten year old boy that I was, I still thought he was an Indian, primarily because he looked like one --- although he spoke Spanish instead of any Indian dialect I was familar with. As I look back now there is a chance the old man may have been Yaqui or possibly of strong Mesoamerican heritage. To be truthful, at the time, my sophistication in such matters were just not refined enough to assimilate all the subtle nuances.

I bring it up because of what Carlos Castaneda himself says about Osorio in POWER OF SILENCE: Further Lessons of Don Juan (1987). In a section called "The First Abstract Core," Castaneda, who never met Osorio, is, in the description, actually quoting the words of Don Juan and in doing so, in an alarmingly uncanny sort of way uses almost the exact same words that I have in my description of the old man in the desert. Castaneda writes:

"He was not Indian or even a brown Mexican, but he was not Anglo white either. In fact, his complexion seemed to be like no one else's, especially in his later years when his ever-changing complexion shifted constantly from dark to very light and back again to dark. When I first met him he was a light-brown old man, then as time went by, he became a light-skinned young man, perhaps only a few years older than me. I was twenty at that time."

If you have followed the thread of the story from Ken Eagle Feather or some of the other links listed below, you may recall that Osorio was around 40 years old when he first crossed paths with Don Juan and somewhere near half that age when he first met Ulloa, making Osorio at the time of that meeting about 20 years old or so. I also write that when Ulloa first saw Osorio during that meeting Osorio was laying face down in a field bleeding to death through his mouth, having lost so much blood that Ulloa thought the young actor was going to die. Yet when Don Juan met Osorio twenty years later he was described as very slim and muscular. His hair was black, thick, and wavy. He had a long, fine nose, strong big white teeth, an oval face, strong jaw, and shiny dark-brown eyes and a light-skinned young man, perhaps only a few years older than Don Juan who himself was 20 years old at the time. A fairly remarkable recovery for a 40 year old man found dying face down in his own blood with tuberculosis twenty years before.
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In my opinion the old man in the desert was the actual, real honest-togoodness teacher of whoever the genuine person the Don Juan Matus character represents. I am speaking, of course, about the Diablero of Yaqui or Yuma descent that Don Juan sought out AFTER leaving Osorio following Ulloa's death --- and that Castaneda was never able to meet or confirm. In A Separate Reality (1971) Castaneda writes:

"I remembered that Bill and I had once driven all day looking for the house of an "eccentric" Mexican Indian who lived in the area. We did not find the man's house and I had the feeling that the Indians whom we had asked for directions had deliberately misled us. Bill had told me that the man was a "yerbero," a person who gathers and sells medicinal herbs, and that he knew a great deal about the hallucinogenic cactus, peyote. He had also said that it would be worth my while to meet him. Bill was my guide in the Southwest while I was collecting information and specimens of medicinal plants used by the Indians of the area."

Castaneda says he and his colleague Bill had spent a whole day looking for the house of an "eccentric" Mexican Indian who lived in the area. At the time of the above quote he and Bill were sitting in the Nogales Greyhound Bus Station --- the implication being that the area was somewhere adjacent to Nogales. Since the two of them had just returned from their Road Trip around the desert southwest, and it ended in Nogales rather than several hundred miles further toward the west than say, Yuma, then more than likely they had just come in from New Mexico or the general northeastern Sonora region. In The Active Side of Infinity (1998) in a section titled "A Journey of Power" Castaneda presents what was said in a discussion between he and Bill during the time they were both still at the bus station in Nogales:

"Bill obviously didn't believe me. He accused me of holding out on him. "I know the people around this area," he said belligerently, "and that old man is a very strange fart. He doesn't talk to anybody, Indians included. Why would he talk to you; a perfect stranger?" "Do you know where his house is?" I asked him. "I haven't the foggiest idea," he answered curtly. "I have heard people from this area say that he doesn't live anywhere, that he just appears here and there unexpectedly, but that's a lot of horse-shit. He probably lives in some shack in Nogales, Mexico."

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In the third book of his series, Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Castaneda writes that after returning to Los Angeles he "prepared himself for six months" and when he "felt ready" he went back looking for Don Juan, however NOT seeking out a "shack in Nogales, Mexico," as suggested as a possibility by Bill --- or to or around Nogales, Arizona where they met Don Juan --- but Yuma, Arizona. Citing a date during the winter recess at the end of the fall semester 1960 (i.e., Saturday, December 17, 1960), after allowing a full six months to lapse without ever seeing or talking with Don Juan in any way shape or form since their initial bus station encounter in Nogales, Castaneda goes, for whatever reason, to Yuma. Castaneda writes of his experience:

"I found his house after making long and taxing inquiries among the local Indians. It was early afternoon when I arrived and parked in front of it. I saw him sitting on a wooden milk crate. He seemed to recognize me and greeted me as I got out of my car."

So, Castaneda and his experienced driving around the southwest guide, Bill, drove around a whole day six months before and could not find "the house of an 'eccentric' Mexican Indian who lived in the area" (Nogales/Sonora), but Castaneda on his own, after simply asking a couple local Indians in a effort that he calls taxing inquiries, drove right up in front of Don Juan's house in Yuma.

Noticeably, where I mention in my writings about an "excursion deep into a remote part of the southern New Mexico desert" making it (the location) possibly difficult to find, Castaneda writes about a town (Yuma) that you can drive right up in front of Don Juan's house and park. It leads me to believe we are talking about two different places and most likely two different people.[1] In The Active Side of Infinity (1998), only this time in a section titled "Who Was Don Juan Matus, Really?" Castaneda describes Don Juan, albeit inadvertently backing up in his OWN words MY thesis of two different men by interjecting the possibility of a seeming difference between the person he met in Nogales and the man he met in Yuma. Castaneda writes:

"When I finally had don Juan in front of me again, the first thing I noticed about him was that he didn't look at all as I had imagined him during all the time I had tried to find him. I had fabricated an image of the man I had met at the bus depot, which I perfected every day by allegedly remembering more details.

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Then Castaneda goes on to say over a number of paragraphs:

"In my mind, he was an old man, still very strong and nimble, yet almost frail. The man facing me was muscular and decisive. He moved with agility, but not nimbleness. His steps were firm, and, at the same time, light. He exuded vitality and purpose. "My composite memory was not at all in harmony with the real thing. I thought he had short, white hair and an extremely dark complexion. His hair was longer, and not as white as I had imagined. His complexion was not that dark either. I could have sworn that his features were birdlike, because of his age. But that was not so either. His face was full, almost round. In one glance, the most outstanding feature of the man looking at me was his dark eyes, which shone with a peculiar, dancing glow. "Something that had bypassed me completely in my prior assessment of him was the fact that his total countenance was that of an athlete. His shoulders were broad, his stomach flat. He seemed to be planted firmly on the ground. There was no feebleness to his knees, no tremor in his upper limbs. I had imagined detecting a slight tremor in his head and arms, as if he were nervous and unsteady. I had also imagined him to be about five feet six inches tall, three inches shorter than his actual height."

What Carlos Castaneda did, as a writer, was to implement the so-called writer's literary license, and shuffle together bits and pieces of information regarding Don Juan's REAL teacher gleaned from discussions over time and apply it to the actor and non-diablero Shaman-sorcerer, Osorio (i.e., at least tuberculosis; not so clear on long, fine nose, etc.), in turn eliminating his real teacher from the equation. That is why by the time The Active Side of Infinity (1998) was written Castaneda had moved the "eccentric Mexican Indian," albeit correctly indentified now as a "terrifying sorcerer," from Nogales to the town of Yuma. To wit:

"I did remember Bill mentioning, in a very casual manner, but not in relation to the cloud shaman, that he knew about the existence of a mysterious old man who was a retired shaman, an old Indian misanthrope from Yuma who had once been a terrifying sorcerer."

Why would Castaneda do such a thing? He had to give his readers something. Don Juan was highly reluctant to share or reveal in real life to anybody, Castaneda included, who his actual teacher was --- because by doing so, in that his teacher was still alive, it could set into motion the possibility of eroding away or wilting his
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teacher's powers, white light shields, etc., making him vunerable to potential enemies such as predatory organic, inorganic, and other negatives. So said, in conversations with Castaneda, Don Juan was much more forthcoming regarding Osorio, but, because of his concerns, reluctant to divulge any amount of anything regarding his real teacher --- so Castaneda simply meshed the two together.

AND NOW THIS:

Some people say there never was a Don Juan Matus. Others say he was composite of several people, most often being named the revered Cahuilla spiritual elder Salvador Lopez and the Mazatec curandera Maria Sabina. Others, such as Tezlcazi Guitimea Cachora have claimed outright to BE Don Juan Matus. Still others say someone like Alex Apostolides, of whom I address the possibility, or lack of same, in The Tree, if not Don Juan was the role model for him. Then there are those like Ken Eagle Feather who say they met, knew and actually studied under him. However, even the staunchest critic against Don Juan existing, that is, if he was real or not, would not go as far to say that Castaneda wasn't. He went to UCLA, got his PhD, and did all the events leading up to the bus station meeting in Nogales. After that, no matter how one mixes it, berates it, or whether any of it is true or false, real or imagined, the following still plays out:

"(If) Don Juan was an actual person, a composite of several people, a total fabrication or a figment of Castaneda's imagination, the events leading up to meeting Don Juan and the various interactions with people, places, and things don't necessarily have to be discarded. Then again, if the informant was used as a model by Castaneda for Don Juan, or if aspects of his manners or abilities seeped into the characterization of Don Juan, I can't really say as he was neither Yaqui, Native American, Mexican-Indian nor Mesoamerican or Hispanic. Except for a possible hint in the closing paragraph of Cloud Shaman, relating to the fact cited above where the informant "cloaked by shimmering desert heat waves, simply seemed to evaporate into the rocks and sagebrush without a trace," it was never made clear to me specifically if he himself was a Shaman." (source)

DON JUAN MATUS:

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Real or Imagined?

the Wanderling

"In both his second and third books, A Separate Reality (1971) and Journey To Ixtlan (1972), Carlos Castaneda, telling the same story as in his first and last books, presents to the readers seeming different scenarios --- and because of discrepancies and seeming inconsistencies Castaneda critics dismiss him as nothing more than a charlatan. However, if you take the time to read something as highly regarded by many people as the first four books of the New Testament in the Bible, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, you will see that between them, even though they cover the same story and all of them agree on the overall premise, each one is different...and nobody complains about that."

DON JUAN MATUS: Real or Imagined? Paragraph 8, below

In the world of writing, both fiction and non-fiction, Carlos Castaneda is deemed to be one of the most controversial authors and figures around. In the scientific arena and a good part of academia the same holds true, and especially so by those with well established credentials in the anthropological and archaeological fields. Supporters and backers of Castaneda, who are most often found in the realm of the spiritual, occult, or shamanism rather than academia, typically maintain every word and every aspect of his series of books based on a Yaqui Indian shaman-sorcerer named Don Juan Matus are factual and nothing but true. Detractors say the contents don't even come close, and even if there is an element or thread of truth weaved throughout his series of books they are not to be taken seriously.
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Jane Holden Kelley, the author and co-author of a number of books related to the Yaqui Indians of the Sonoran Desert and desert southwest writes the following in her book YAQUI WOMEN: Contemporary Life Histories (1978):

"Deliberate falsification is always a possiblity, whether for monetary gain, amusement, or sheer cussedness. A peripheral story serves to illustrate this point. As everyone knows, Carlos Castaneda's books have had a tremendous impact on a wide audience, and Castaneda's don Juan is a Yaqui. I would assume that every anthropologist who has worked with the Yaquis has been bombarded with inquires about Yaqui drug use, sorcery, and what have you. I have received letters from people wanting an introduction to a Yaqui brujo (witch or sorcerer, also Diablero), and the subject of my Yaqui research is never mentioned without someone asking me if there really is a don Juan. Do I know him or people like him? Or are all Yaquis like don Juan? To such inquiries, I can only say that I have not encountered don Juan or anyone like him, an admission guaranteed to lower my social value on the spot. "The Yaquis themselves are now approached by outsiders in search of don Juan. A Pascua Nueva Yaqui leader related that no few Volkswagen buses, usually with California license plates, find their way to Pascua Nueva. The inhabitants of the VW buses are described as "long-haired hippies," for the word hippie has deeply penetrated Yaqui consciousness with strong negative connotations. The Pascua Nueva leader explained with some delight his tactics for dealing with these unwelcome intrusions. When inquiries begin, he says he has never heard of don Juan. Slowly he shifts to admitting cautiously that there is a don Juan but he must be protected. Finally, he weakens and tells the inquirers where don Juan lives. There actually is an old man named don Juan who lives in Pascua Nueva, one said to have considerable ingenuity in spinning tales. Everyone is vastly amused and the hippies are usually good for a little money, cigarettes, beer, and other things before they have been had."

Accurate assessment or personal bias? Such lamenting over Don Juan does not answer if he was a total fiction? Real or imagined? True or False? Lets find out.

Toward the end of his series of books, in The Active Side of Infinity (1998), Castaneda writes that while in Arizona during the late Spring of 1960 "he met with an extremely seasoned anthropologist" --- thought possibly to be Edward H. Spicer. Spicer, who, not unlike Jane Holden Kelley and her father before her, William Curry Holden, had written and published a great deal on both the Yaqui Indians of Arizona and those of Sonora, Mexico. Castaneda, a Peruvian, was told by the seasoned anthropologist "that the Indian societies of the Southwest were extremely isolationist, and that foreigners, especially those of
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Hispanic origin, were distrusted, even abhorred, by those Indians." Interesting as well, in a continuing theme of Castaneda detractors, regarding the use of Sacred Datura, the hallucinogenic and medicinal plant Castaneda wrote he reportedly used first under Don Juan Matus to experience other dimensions and other realities, Spicer, harping away, is on record as saying "I know of no information or reference concerning Yaquis using Datura." No matter that Castaneda's first use of Datura was NOT learned initially under the ausipices of Don Juan, but the informant, who, like Don Juan's own master teacher Julian Osorio, was neither Indian nor Yaqui.[1] In addition to Castaneda's supporters and somewhat formidable list of detactors there is a third camp that says even though some of what he writes is sort of iffy it holds true in a number of areas. For example, anthropologist Jay Courtney Fikes in his book Carlos Castaneda, Academic Opportunism and the Psychedelic Sixties (1993) doesn't totally discount Don Juan Matus or what Castaneda has to say, suggesting that rather than being one individual, the chance exists that Don Juan was actually a composite of two or possibly even three authentic Indian shamans. Fikes goes on to mention the possibility of one being the Mazatec curandera Maria Sabina, with another being, although not mentioned by Fikes in his book but by others, the venerated Cahuilla Shaman, Salvador Lopez. Equally interesting, for those who may be so interested, there is even another slightly different take regarding the potential possibility of Don Juan as that being offered up by either Fikes or Lopez --- all the while adding to the overall knowledge of Don Juan and who he is/was --- there are those who are said to have been the role model for Don Juan such as Alex Apostolides and others who said they actually studied under him such as Ken Eagle Feather to the much more mysterious The Old Man In the Desert. Punching holes in Castaneda's thesis or proping him up as an advocate or being a proponent of a third way still does not change how HE presented it.

According to Castaneda, in the late spring of 1960 he went on a Road Trip with a fellow colleague that cumulated in the direct meeting between himself and the shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus inside the Greyhound Bus Station in Nogales, Arizona. Castaneda and his colleague, a onetime lowly Pothunter turned reputable amateur archaeologist sometimes called Bill in the narratives and sometimes left unnamed, were waiting for the bus to arrive to take Castaneda to Los Angeles. As written by Castaneda toward the end of his series of Don Juan books, in The Active Side of Infinity (1998), Castaneda says the colleague looked out across the station and saw an old man he thought he recognized. He turned to Castaneda and said:

"I think that old man sitting on the bench by the corner over there is the man I told you about, I am not quite sure because I've had him in front of me, face-to-face, only once."
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"What man is that? What did you tell me about him?" Castaneda asked. "When we were talking about Shamans and Shamans' transformations, I told you that I had once met a Cloud Shaman." "Yes, yes, I remember that," Castaneda said. "Is that man the Cloud Shaman?" "No," the colleague said emphatically to Castaneda. "But I think HE is a companion OR a teacher of the Cloud Shaman. I saw BOTHof them together in the distance various times, many years ago."

Thirty years before, in his first book THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (1968), speaking of the same incident, there was no mention of Cloud Shamans. Instead the narrative went something like:

"I was waiting in a border town for a Greyhound bus talking with a friend who had been my guide and helper . . . . Suddenly he leaned toward me and whispered that the man, a white-haired old Indian, who was sitting in front of the window was very learned about plants, especially peyote. I asked my friend to introduce me to this man. My friend greeted him, then went over and shook his hand. After they had talked for a while, my friend signaled me to join them, but immediately left me alone with the old man, not even bothering to introduce us. He was not in the least embarrassed. I told him my name and he said that he was called Juan and that he was at my service. He used the Spanish polite form of address. We shook hands at my initiative and then remained silent for some time. It was not a strained silence, but a quietness, natural and relaxed on both sides. Though his dark face and neck were wrinkled, showing his age, it struck me that his body was agile and muscular. I then told him that I was interested in obtaining information about medicinal plants. Although in truth I was almost totally ignorant about peyote, I found myself pretending that I knew a great deal, and even suggesting that it might be to his advantage to talk with me. As I rattled on, he nodded slowly and looked at me, but said nothing. I avoided his eyes and we finished by standing, the two of us, in dead silence. Finally, after what seemed a very long time, don Juan got up and looked out of the window. His bus had come. He said good-bye and left the station. I was annoyed at having talked nonsense to him, and at being seen through by those remarkable eyes. When my friend returned he tried to console me for my failure to learn anything from don Juan. He explained that the old man was often silent or noncommittal, but the disturbing effect of this first encounter was not so
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easily dispelled. . . . .The friend who had introduced me to don Juan explained later that the old man was not a native of Arizona, where we met, but was a Yaqui Indian from Sonora, Mexico."

As cited in the opening quote at the top of this page, in both his second and third books, A Separate Reality (1971) and Journey To Ixtlan (1972), Carlos Castaneda, telling the same story as above in his first and last books, published thirty years apart in 1968 and 1998 respectively, presents to the readers seeming different scenarios --- and because of discrepancies and seeming inconsistencies Castaneda critics dismiss him as nothing more than a charlatan. Then again, if you take the time to read something as highly regarded by many people as the first four books of the New Testament in the Bible, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, between them you will see that, even though they cover the same story and all of them agree on the overall premise, each one is different...and nobody complains about that. Now true, each of the four Biblical books is attributed to a separate author and written at separate times --- so discrepancies might be expected.[2] The Don Juan books, although written over a duration of thirty years, were done so by the same author and basically produced one after the other almost in a continuous series. If you sit down and think about it for a minute, even if Castaneda was not able to recall any of the specifics from the past, how hard would it have been for him to have returned to each of his previous books to see what he had already written and sorted out any discrepancies, however large or small, and just worked them out prior to publishing the next one? It borders on the ludicrous that in The Teachings of Don Juan (1968), as shown in the above quotes, Castaneda writes that Don Juan "was sitting in front of the window" the first time he met him in the bus station and thirty years later in The Active Side of Infinity (1998) Don Juan was now no longer sitting in front of the window, but "sitting on the bench by the corner" and that somehow it really matters. Apparently Castaneda never thought it a problem.

The trouble the majority of critics seem to have with Castaneda, and the one item that the most serious of the critics haunted him with throughout his literary career was not minor inconsistancies, but the nearly total absence of field notes. Most credible anthropologists and archaeologists back up their work with an incredible amount of field notes --- field notes that are filled with accurate, complete and believable data, including people, places, dates, times, expected outcomes and actual outcomes --- all basically readily available on demand to back up and substantiate any and all of their findings. In Castaneda's case, except for about 12 pages of questionable field notes --- questionable because they appear to be more like an early draft of a book than anything else --- no such proof has been forthcoming.[3]
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In his third book, Journey to Ixtlan (1972), which in its final published form is virtually indistinguishable from the manuscript he turned in for his UCLA PhD dissertation, Castaneda writes:

"Since I was capable of writing down most of what he (Don Juan Matus) said in the beginning of the apprenticeship, and every thing that was said in the later phases of it, I gathered voluminous field notes."

Where Castaneda runs afoul with his peers and critics is, even though he clearly states that he gathered voluminous field notes, other than the previously mentioned 12 pages, no significant number of additional field notes to back up what he has to say have ever been produced. In later years, he claimed they had been destroyed by flooding in his basement. The question arises, on such slim evidence in the public domain on the existance of field notes, and, in that Journey to Ixtlan was Castaneda's doctoral dissertation virtually verbatim, did his graduate committee have access to his field notes or other valid documentation that would verify his fieldwork? Some say such was NOT the case, however, it is a given his graduate committee DID sign off on his dissertation and UCLA DID in fact grant Castaneda his PhD. It just seems odd that when Castaneda turned in his dissertation to be signed off he would blatantly place right in the middle of his thesis that he gathered voluminous field notes that his whole graduate committee and everybody else could see and read and not have any physical evidence to back it up with. If they asked, and it seems they should have considering the nature of the material, and Castaneda did not follow through with the notes, voluminous or otherwise, the committee --five full professors strong --- was highly remiss in its duty.[4] In addition to the twelve pages that have already been given credit as existing, it should be mentioned Dr. Gordon Wasson, the first white man documented --- or at least widely publicized --- to have participated in the Mazatec mushroom ceremony Velada, after talking with Dr. Robert S. Ravicz, et al, sent a letter to Castaneda requesting clarification regarding certain aspects of Don Juan's use of psychotropic mushrooms. It is known Castaneda responded by sending Wasson several pages from his field notes that were relevant to his request. Voluminous field notes or not, in the tenth book into his series, titled Magical Passes (1998), Castaneda offers his strongest clarification of Don Juan's chronology, some of which of course, had been spattered here and there throughout each of his previous books over time as well. Don Juan is described as being born in Yuma, Arizona Territory, to a Yaqui Indian father from Sonora, Mexico and a Yuma Indian mother from the Territory of Arizona. The three of them lived together in Arizona Territory until Don Juan was ten years old, whereupon, for reasons not known or undisclosed by Castaneda, he was taken by his father to Sonora, Mexico. There they were unintentionaly caught up in the Mexican government war against the Yaquis. His father was killed, and Don Juan ended up in southern Mexico, where he grew up
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with Yaquis that had been uprooted previously by the Mexican government and sent to areas of Mexico well beyond the confines of Sonora --- places such as Oaxaca, Vera Cruz, and the Yucatan. War with the Yaquis had been going on and off between the Spanish and later the Mexican government basically since their initial contact --- with no real beginning or a defined finalization date in sight. Finally, in the 1880s, in an attempt to quell the seemingly never ending hostilities, a major relocation or Yaquis occurred. Yaquis were moved from the United States Territory to Sonora and from Sonora to United States Territory (Arizona did not become a state until 1912). In 1897, a peace treaty was signed at Ortiz, Sonora between the Yaqui tribes and the Mexican government. However, within just two years, in 1899, war and deportation of Yaquis began again, continuing over a period of several years. It is thought Don Juan, age ten, and his father were caught up in one of those deportations. His mother, a Yuma Indian, apparently remained north of the border. Ten years later, at the age of twenty, after having grown from a young boy into a young man under the umberella of the Mexican government's Yaqui relocation project to southern Mexico, Don Juan supposedly came in contact with a master sorcerer by the name of Julian Osorio. He introduced Don Juan into a lineage of sorcerers that was purported to be twenty-five generations long. Osorio was not an Indian, but the son of European immigrants to Mexico. Don Juan told Castaneda that Osorio had been an actor and during one of his theatrical tours he had met another master shaman, Elias Ulloa, who transmitted to him the knowledge of his lineage of sorcerers. According to Castaneda, Don Juan's introduction to shamanism under Osorio was unique because he was taught not only by Osorio, but Osorio's teacher Ulloa as well. Generation upon generation of shaman-sorcerers in their lineage went about selecting apprentices well after their own teachers left the world. But, Don Juan, for whatever reason became an apprentice eight years before Osorio's benefactor left the world. The flow of the narrative from Don Juan through Castaneda has the bulk of the work turning Don Juan into a shaman-sorcerer credited to Osorio, but he makes it clear that he also had the benefit of being taught by Ulloa. Between the two it was like being reared by a powerful father and an even more powerful grandfather, neither ever seeing eye to eye. In such a contest, Don Juan says, the grandfather invariably wins. Thus, what Castaneda presents to the reader through his books is that Don Juan always considered himself more the product of Ulloa's teachings than Osorio. This is where things begin to get fuzzy. In his first book, The Teachings of Don Juan, Castaneda made it extremely clear that his indoctrination process or apprenticeship had been guided under the direct aegis of a shaman-sorcerer who himself had studied under a Diablero --- and, without reservation, that Don Juan Matus and nobody else WAS the person who had studied under a Diablero and TAUGHT Castaneda. The following is how Castaneda presents it:

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"At first I saw Don Juan simply as a rather peculiar man who knew a great deal about peyote and who spoke Spanish remarkably well. But the people with whom he lived believed that he had some sort of secret knowledge, that he was a brujo. The Spanish word brujo means, in English, medicine man, curer, witch, sorcerer. It connotes essentially a person who has extraordinary, and usually evil, powers." "In describing his teacher, Don Juan used the word diablero. Later I learned that diablero is a term used only by the Sonoran Indians. It refers to an evil person who practises black sorcery and is capable of transforming himself into an animal - a bird, a dog, a coyote, or any other creature."

It is my contention that if any or all of the scenario as presented above from the pen of Castaneda is true or based on a practical semblance of truth, what probably happened is Don Juan started traipsing around Mexico with Osorio almost like being in a vaudville troupe or a traveling carnival. He was caught up in all the showmanship and lights, and along the way introduced to things shaman by the actor. Ulloa comes into the picture and, although the story line is left out of the narrative by Castaneda either selectively or because he did not know it, Don Juan, sensing his destiny and the core reality of it all through his more serious interactions with Ulloa, following the death of Ulloa, makes the decision to abandon his apprenticeship under Osorio and returned to his roots --- the Yaquis or Yumas --with, it should be noted, and questionable at best, an apparent return to only the Yaqui side of things. I say questionable at best because for me there appears to be weaved throughout the text a strong lack of emphasis by Castaneda regarding the Yuma side of Don Juan, the Yuma side being totally ignored or unheralded in the long run by both Castaneda and critics. Interestingly enough, to the mocking detriment of Castaneda, the ones that usually emphasize the Yaqui over the Yuma, are the same ones that continually browbeat Castaneda with the no known use of Datura by Yaquis in an oblique effort to build a case against the existence of Don Juan and undermine the credibility of Castaneda --- all the while knowing that the Yuma had strong cultural traditions of its use. Somewhere, not unlike myself and my own interaction with the shaman man of spells called an Obeah high in the mountains of Jamaica, in and around the mountains and deserts of Sonora, southern Arizona or New Mexico Don Juan sought out, met and was taught by an isolated, real, albeit, unnamed shaman-sorcerer said to be a diablero. Now, if Don Juan's master teacher was actually a diablero or thought to be such by tribal kinsmen, a shaman with an evil bent as stated by Castaneda, then, even though originally he might have had ancestoral ties or a blood-line tribal affiliation with either the Yaqui or Yuma, although highly respected and cautiously sought out, he was, like Don Juan himself, most likely a loner or an outcast. A now retired professor of anthropology at Occidental College, Dr. C. Scott Littleton, who knew Castaneda well having attended UCLA graduate school with him in the same department at the same time, and because of the level of their friendship had Castaneda as a most willing guest lecturer in his classes at both Occidental and UCLA Extension on many occasions, is on record as saying in a
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published interview with one Laura Knight-Jadczyk that he was convinced there was indeed a prototype of Don Juan and that he was probably a Yaqui Indian who moved rather freely between the Tucson area and northern Sonora --- the Tucson area and northern Sonora being the same general locality suspected as the habitation place of his unnamed and unidentified master teacher. Littleton also has said he recalled Castaneda telling him that he never saw Don Juan again, at least in the flesh, after Castaneda along with at least one other of Don Juans followers jumped into the abyss off the top of a flat, barren mountain on the western slopes of the Sierra Madre in central Mexico. He told Littleton as well, that Don Juan died shortly thereafter. The fate of and who Don Juan's master teacher was, is unclear, although I touch upon it somewhat in Julian Osorio. As far as Ulloa and Osorio go, because Castaneda was unable to make any real headway regarding the true identity of Don Juan's master teacher, whose name and personage Don Juan was highly reluctant to share or reveal in real life to anybody, Castaneda included --- because in doing so could set into motion the possibility of eroding or wilting HIS teacher's powers, White Light Shields, etc., thus opening a window to potential enemies such as predatory organic, inorganic, and other negatives --- it is my opinion that Castaneda took the ideas of shamanistic attributes and abilities that he learned through conversation with Don Juan, that were connected to Don Juan's unnamed master teacher, and applied, at least some of them, to Ulloa and Osorio. In the end Ulloa and Osorio appear to be not much more than straw men. Osorio may have existed in sort of a peripheral sense, but not like Castaneda writes him. That is to say, while it may be such that an Osorio-like character may have set Don Juan along the path, it is questionable at best that the actor was truly a master-sorcerer as Castaneda describes him. Same of Ulloa. Of the two, he is probably the most questionable. Ulloa is likely a conceptual construct, possibly superimposed around an actual person, but even more peripheral and NOT the master-sorcerer and teacher of Osorio he is given credit for. The actual person he is a stand in for is most likely the unnamed shaman-sorcerer that Don Juan studied under. One way or the other Castaneda was not able to learn who that original or initial teacher was, thus the emphasis in his books on the much more marketable and most likely highly fictional Ulloa and Osorio. During that seeking out or apprenticeship phase Castaneda has intimated that Don Juan may have gone to the Valle Nacional area of Oaxaca with that same teacher who --- rather than being Yuma or Yaqui may have been Mazateco --- OR, after his teacher took or sent him there, they (or Don Juan alone) met with a Mazateco curandero. However, according to Richard de Mille in his book The Don Juan Papers (1980), the very fact that Castaneda traveled with Don Juan to the mountains southwest and northwest of Valle Nacional to collect mushrooms suggests where and how Don Juan learned to use them. Castaneda may have well gone with Don Juan to the Valle Nacional in search of mushrooms sometime in the mid 60s, early 70s. What most people don't realize is how long all of this had been going on. Although Castaneda, Wasson and Dr. Timothy Leary were late bloomers on the scene of sorts, most people credit them with the lion's share of discovery. People read that Professor Wasson requested
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information about Don Juan's use of psychotropic mushrooms from Castaneda, albeit AFTER Castaneda's book was published in 1968 --- Castaneda having started his initial groundwork eight years before, in the early 1960s. Wasson's own recorded incident with the Mazatec mushroom ceremony occurred well before that, in the mid 1950s. However, my uncle, Castaneda's informant in the use and rituals of Sacred Datura, had been bio-searching hallucinogenic and medicinal plants native to the desert southwest and Mexico for years, well before any on the major movers came upon the scene. To show how established the lot of it was, in the process of researching back-up material confirming the level or extent of certain individuals and their participation and/or whereabouts in relation to various Roswell UFO events initially brought about by inferences by C. Scott Littleton, mentioned previously above, regarding HIS suspicions that Castaneda's experiences reflected a UFO connection -- a possibility Littleton had raised with Castaneda personally on a number of occasions despite the absence of any clear-cut UFO imagery in his writings (Littleton's interest stemmed from his own experience as a young boy actually observing the giant airborne object of an unknow nature that overflew the Los Angeles area during the war years, an event that came to be known as the Battle of Los Angeles). Interestingly enough, because the body of the research material that showed up indicated one of the two archaeologists connected in the investigation of the event was none other than Castaneda's own bus station archaeologist colleague Bill --- with the other being, believe it or not, Jane Holden Kelley's own father William Curry Holden --- the following is presented from Roswell Incident Upadated:

In December, 1947, Schultz (vertebra paleontologist, Dr. C. Bertrand Schultz) presents at the 46th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association held December 28-31, in Albuquerque. Holden attends the conference. Coincidently, the bio-searcher, discussed below, hoping to hear Ruth F. Kirk present "Aspects of Peyotism Among the Navajo," just happens to attend the same conference as well.

Notice how mainstream it all is. An established professor, Ruth F. Kirk, is formally presenting Aspects of Peyotism Among the Navajo, at a major annual conference and the bio-searcher, that is the informant, is attending --- all in 1947 --- a full decade or more before others who became more well known began their explorations in similar areas. The mere aspect of it all, the presentation at conferences, attendees, etc., all exhibit a much earlier history of interest and knowledge. In an event described above Castaneda and his colleague are together in the bus station and the colleague reminds him of their conversation about Cloud Shamans --- all the while pointing out an old man across the waiting room. Castaneda asks if the old man is a Cloud Shaman and the colleague replies:
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"No. But I think HE is a companion OR a teacher of the Cloud Shaman. I saw BOTH of them together in the distance various times, many years ago."

The old man is a companion OR teacher of whoever the Cloud Shaman IS --- and Castaneda's colleague saw both of them together in the distance various times, many years ago. Various times means more times than just one time. The year of the conversation between Castaneda and the colleague is at the end of the summer,1960. Seeing the two of them together, the old man and the Cloud Shaman many years ago, means sometime well before the colleague and Castaneda ever met. Castaneda never produced Don Juan, nor, truth be told, as stated above, other than Osorio who was never much more than a preliminary step or a pointer, Castaneda was not able to learn who Don Juan's true or real master teacher was. However, it appears that well before Castaneda came upon the scene there was sufficient time for others to know.

Don Juan Matus was supposedly born in 1891 and died in 1973, although some references cite 1976. Castaneda supposedly met Don Juan in the late spring, early summer of 1960. He apprenticed under him and over the years wrote a dozen books covering his experiences. However, during that time, except for one sometimes called into question source (see), nobody except Castaneda seems to have personally met or confirmed a meeting with Don Juan under any circumstances. Nor was he ever produced by Castaneda or anyone on the fringes claiming to have met him able to produce him. It is quite clear from the above two accounts that Castaneda's colleague Bill "knows" the old man, or at least had encountered him in the past. But it doesn't mean he knows the old man is or will come to be Castaneda's shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus. In A Separate Reality(1971) Castaneda writes:

Bill said convincingly that he had encountered people like him before, people who gave the impression of knowing a great deal. In his judgment, he said, such people were not worth the trouble, because sooner or later one could obtain the same information from someone else who did not play hard to get. He said that he had neither patience nor time for old fogies, and that it was possible that the old man was only presenting himself as being knowledgeable about herbs, when in reality he knew as little as the next man.

The above quote that Castaneda cites Bill as saying seems like a far cry from anything that anybody would claim as a full-on endorsement regarding the old man's abilities. Basically, apparently not knowing him specifically, Bill simply lumped the old man in with every other old fogie he had ever ran into. Truth be said, at the very moment of the Nogales bus station encounter, it seems quite clear that neither
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Bill NOR Castaneda had any sort of a clue as to who the old man was or what power he may or may not had. I don't think Bill ever did find out, and if he did, it was so many years after the fact that it just didn't matter one way or the other to him anyway. [5]

On the third page of my web site ZEN ENLIGHTENMENT: The Path Unfolds, which has been on the web, except for minor editing, in the same form and content a decade or more (see), I mention the relationship between my Uncle and Carlos Castaneda as follows:

In later years, because of that association and my uncle's knowledge of Sacred Datura and peyote as well as other halluciogens, he was interviewed by Carlos Castaneda, apparently on a Road Trip in the process of gathering information for future use in his series of Don Juan books. In 1960 or so Castaneda was an anthropology student at UCLA collecting information and specimens of medicinal type plants used by the Indians in the desert southwest when the two crossed paths. My uncle had field searched thousands and thousands of plants, herbs, and mushrooms, even to having had several previously undiscovered species named after him.

Following the death of my mother I spent a lot of years living with various shirt-tail relatives and in foster homes. As I reached toward my pre-teen years I was living with my uncle. By the time I reached my teenage years, however, I was no longer under my uncle's auspices. It was during those teenage years through to young adulthood, while my uncle and I were separated, and how I present it in The Informant and Carlos Castaneda, that he and Castaneda crossed paths. It was during that period, while I was out of the picture, that Castaneda was heavily involved in interviewing my uncle and learning the rituals related to the use of Sacred Datura and other medicinal plants. As mentioned above, Castaneda was no more than an undergraduate student in those days, carrying with him all the baggage of an unassured novitate. My uncle was always running into people that sought various amounts of information from him about natural desert plants and any effect they may have. Castaneda was just another in a long line of seekers and wasn't particularly memorable except for, in retrospect, a certain amount of persistance. Not to undercut Castaneda, but my uncle was surprised --- as well as pleased to a certain extent --- to find out THAT specific person who had tramped around the desert with him all those days and nights achieved the level of success he did and that he actually became "somebody." To his knowledge nobody he had ever come into contact in the past had. My uncle was quite pleased, regardless of how Castaneda may have presented it in his books and the public, that at least some or part of the information and knowledge he carried with him was not going to be simply lost forever to the winds and the rocks and sand of the desert.

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After years of my uncle and I not seeing each other for no other particular reason than I had moved on to study-practice under my Mentor, traveled throughout Mexico and the Yucatan running into a Mayan Shaman with startling results, and been in and out of the Military (U.S. Army, Top Secret Crypto Clearance) along with months of doing hard time in a Zen monastery (see), late in the year 1968, my uncle called saying he wanted to meet me in Kingman, Arizona --- Kingman being approximately halfway between where I lived in California and my uncle's abode near theSangre de Christo mountains of New Mexico. After talking for nearly a half a day just as we were parting he gave me a small taped up cardboard box six or eight inches square and asked me to deliver it in person and only in person to a man in Laguna Beach, California --- and whatever I did, NOT give it to anybody else under any circumstances. When I arrived in Laguna Beach I found the man sequestered in a remote cave hidden in the hills above Laguna Canyon Road. The man, Dr. Timothy Leary. The contents of the box not known. In the end the meeting in Kingman rekindled the relationship between my uncle and myself. Which brings us to Carlos Castaneda and Don Juan Matus. I had not seen my uncle since I was a kid, the last time being our meeting with the noted scientist Albert Einstein. Now I was an adult. In 1968 Castaneda was basically no more than an unknown having his first book published. I had yet to have my experience with the Jamaican man of spells, the Obeah. Following counsel from my mentor I had participated in study-practice under the venerated Japanese Zen master Yasutani Hakuun Roshi --- without much success it might be added --and was edging toward the end of the Twelve Year Rule. Shamanism and the occult was not high on my agenda until during study-practice I found myself experiencing a continuing upwelling of stronger and stronger manifestations that could only be attributed to the supernormal preceptual states of Siddhis. I found myself meeting with my uncle more and more as he discussed and clarified some of my early childhood experiences under his auspices. One of the most memorable of those meetings occurred late one afternoon in a small cafe outside Taos, New Mexico. I was traveling with my uncle and a Native American tribal spiritual elder. We had gone in to eat, not to meet anyone. But, no sooner had we sat down when a man stepped up to our table that my uncle seemed to know. My uncle called him Bill in conversation, but he was introduced as Larry to the elder and myself. He turned out to be William Lawrence Campbell, known to the locals as Cactus Jack, a onetime Pothunter turned amateur archaeologist of some renown. My uncle knew him from way back. During World War II Campbell had personally seen the mysterious flying objects that harassed flight crews and aviators on both sides of the action called Foo Fighters. Following the war he spent some time scavenging meteorite scraps from the Canyon Diablo scatter field surrounding Meteor Crater. From there he met Dr. Harvey Nininger, founder of the American Meteorite Museum, the first meteorite museum in the world. He showed up at the Roswell UFO debris field as well. Somewhere along the way Campbell and my uncle crossed paths. It was Campbell that ended up being Bill or the Bill-like character in the series of Don Juan books by Castaneda, and of which is pretty much confirmed in CARLOS CASTANEDA: Don Juan Matus and the Nogales Bus Station Meeting.
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Castaneda writes that when the Road Trip alluded to in the various Don Juan books ended, Bill drove him to the Greyhound bus depot in Nogales, Arizona, for the return trip home to Los Angeles. As presented above, the two were sitting waiting for the bus when Bill pointed out the old man that was eventually revealed to be the powerful shaman-sorcerer who had learned his art from a Diablero and who Castaneda is said to have apprenticed under. After Bill points out the "old man" he then reminds Castaneda about Cloud Shamans and the connection between the two. Bill says the "old man" and the Cloud Shaman knew each other. He also says the Cloud Shaman and the informant are one and the same person --- AND it is known that "one person" is my uncle. In his works Castaneda writes that the "old man" he met in the bus station is none other than the shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus. Using Bill's logic, it would imply by default then that my uncle knew Don Juan Matus. If such was the case and had I been privy to the same information myself I would have personally had in my hands TWO people that could have substantiated the reality or existance of Don Juan Matus one way or the other --- or possibly even led me to him --- IF such was the case. The clinker is, although both my uncle and Castaneda's colleague Bill seem to know the "old man" in some fashion or the other, neither of them ever say anything about him being Don Juan. Castaneda is the ONLY one out of everybody or anybody involved that seems to know or says the "old man" in the bus station is or turned out to be, Don Juan Matus. For all I know the very strange man that handed me the feather as reported in The Boy and the Giant Feather could have been Don Juan --- or for that matter, even better, the very strange man might have even been Don Juan's own unknown, albeit, unnamed master teacher said to have been a diablero.

A CONTINUING NAGGING QUESTION: Why do I care if Don Juan is real or not one way or the other and why would I entertain the possibility that the very strange man I met in the desert might have even been Don Juan's own unknown, albeit, unnamed master teacher said to have been a diablero? There are any number of reasons. The most glaring for me personally is that Castaneda is one of the most high profile and best known example of a person that has claimed to fly. I have dwelved into Castaneda and his credibility over and over in depth from one end of the spectrum to the other, primarily to garner back-up material to justify the experience outlined in The Wanderling's Journey. Secondly, and equally as important in that in the end it parallels the first, is a continuing nagging question I carry around in the back of my mind springing from my own, albeit however brief, connection to Castaneda in my youth. (see) If any of you have ever read the website titled: ZEPPELINS: High Altitude Warships you will see that in the late 1950s, sometime shortly after high school, I took a job with a company that designed and built breathing equipment for the U-2, the then super-secret high altitude spy plane. At the time, because of a fairly strong
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art background combined with three solid years of high school drafting experience I was hired as a traineetechnical illustrator --- which basically meant, although it wasn't creative in the classical sense --- I was being paid for my drawing ability, something I modified and pushed off on a larger scale as being an artist in a slowly expanding post high school after-work social circle. The company was right next to Los Angeles International Airport on a little side street in the city of El Segundo, California just off Pacific Coast Highway between Imperial Highway and Rosecrans Avenue. In those days TGIF was a big deal, and since the group I belonged to, myself included, fancied ourselves as artists, our TGIFs were always held in little out of the way places and ALWAYS ran way late into the night. In the general larger group at work it seemed all we ever talked about was girls, cars, and sports. As artists of course, even though most of us didn't know what we were talking about in either case, our conversations always seemed to have to lean toward the heavier side of things. Philosophy, religion, existentialism. A little way east on Rosecrans Avenue from where I worked was the Mattel Toy Company. One of the guys I worked with knew a few guys there, and since they fancied themselves as artists too, some of them used to show up at our get togethers as well. The year was 1958 and one of those that used to show up, and more than one time too, was Carlos Castaneda, who just happened to be working at Mattel Toys at the time. Some people consider it a little odd that Castaneda would have attended our after work artist get togethers in the first place. However, it was not as totally out of the question as those questioning it might think. In those days he was NOT the Carlos Castaneda he came to be. He actually likened himself to being more of an artist than almost anything else --- he even harbored strong personal ambitions in that same area. He had attended Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes, the national fine arts school in Lima, Peru before coming to the United States. In 1956 he called his soon to be wife Margaret Runyan for the first time to see if he could stop by to show her some of his paintings. In 1957, on his petition for naturalization, he listed his occupation as a commercial artist. As well, two witnesses to his petition from his circle of friends, Antonio Fuentes and Ivan Culver, both of whom claimed to know him for several years, were listed on the petition as an artist and commercial artist respectively. They all fit in perfectly because, even though none of us were fine art artists, most of us, being nothing more or less than small time commercial artists hacking out livings on the fringes, held great aspirations for our futures. Just a few short years later, according to Castaneda, on Monday, July 24, 1961 in a conversation with Don Juan and published in Castaneda's third book Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Don Juan admonishes him for never assuming responsibility for his acts and Castaneda writes:

He dared me to name an issue, an item in my life that had engaged all my thoughts. I said art. I had always wanted to be an artist and for years I had tried my hand at that. I still had the painful memory of my failure.

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Most of the members of our loose knit group found themselves in --- or would eventually end up in --- a situation not too dissimilar as Castaneda. As for myself (at the time), although I was a fairly good artist as far as the execution of art went, I had yet to go to college, so any formal knowledge or exposure to the fine arts, philosophy, existentialism, Heidegger, Sartre, or Kierkegaard was fully self-learned and minimal at that. However, even though I was still young, I had a fairly good working background regarding Zen and Enlightenment, plus numerous experiences with tribal elders traveling with my uncle in the desert southwest. In conversation on almost any philosophical or religious topic, MY interjections always circled back around to something related to those two major strengths. Now true, I was a new guy hoping for even the smallest of peer recognition, and anything I may have added to a conversation could easily be lost in the overall milieu --- however, those get togethers ran from a year and a half to less than a year from the time Castaneda says he met the Shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus for the very first time.[5] I don't remember talking to Castaneda on an individual basis for any length of time, say walking to the car or standing at the bar alone, BUT --- although some in the group may have rolled their eyes back into their heads a few times because of what I said -- nobody ever questioned, interjected, added to, backed up, disputed, or probed me for anything related to either my two strengths in any of the conversations, Castaneda or otherwise. And I know I would have most certainly remembered. What I am getting at is, and this is important and the QUESTION I continue to ask myself, IF Castaneda was working on the development of the Don Juan character at any time before he purportedly met him at the bus station in Nogales, our artist discussions after work would have been the perfect forum to bring him up --- yet he didn't. Why? Castaneda just didn't seem to know about such things. If Don Juan Matus was a total made up work of fiction it seems to me, since the timing was perfect, some rudimentary form of Don Juan would have come up in our discussions --- and it was a perfect place to do so as nobody in the group leaned toward the literary side of things so there was no chance any idea Castaneda may have had or presented would have been appropriated or stolen. Even if Castaneda carried a staunch predilection toward holding his cards close to his vest during those early years of our discussions, you would think by now at least, some sort of rough drafts of primitive Don Juans' and his beliefs would have surfaced if he was indeed working on any pre-Don Juan ideas. Additionally, although Castaneda's wife Margaret Runyan confirms that her husband made frequent field trips to Mexico in the time he was supposedly apprenticed to Don Juan --- and while she has publicly dumped on him pretty hard in many areas, she has NEVER reported that Castaneda was working on the Don Juan idea or talking Don Juan philosophy before the Nogales meeting. To my knowledge nobody has come forward to state equivocally that Castaneda was expounding a proto Don Juan philosophy anytime before he supposedly met the Shaman. NOTE: If you have not read any of the Footnotes as of yet please scroll down toward the bottom of the page. FOOTNOTE: [1]

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This footnote is actually based on information from the slightly more comprehensive web site titled CASTANEDA: Datura or Peyote?

When it comes to the use of drugs and hallucinogens most people associate Carlos Castaneda with Peyote. However, it wasn't Peyote but actually the plant Sacred Datura, known throughout in the desert southwest as jimsonweed, that played the primary role in his early experiences into other realities. Notice the emphasis only on the use or non-use of Datura cited by Edward H. Spicer, the seasoned anthropologists and others, for example, rather than on Peyote in the section this footnote is in reference to. In 1960 Castaneda turned in a paper for his UCLA class, "Methods in Field Archaeology," taught by Professor Clement Meighan. Castaneda's ex-wife Margaret Runyan, in her book A Magical Journey, writes, regarding Castaneda's 1960 paper, what Professor Meighan had to say about the contents of that paper:

"His informant knew a great deal about Datura, which was a drug used in initiating ceremonies by some California groups, but had presumed by me and I think most other anthropologists to have passed out of the picture 40 or 50 years ago. So he found an informant who still actually knew something about this and still had used it."

Castaneda's 1960s Paper on Datura, turned in at the end of the spring semester of 1960 and well before he ever met or heard of Don Juan Matus, included fairly academic references to the plants four heads, their various purposes, the roots and their significance, and the method of preparation, cooking and rituals involved, all information that he supposedly learns later from Don Juan between August 23 and September 10, 1961 and describes in THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (1968). (A Magical Journey pp. 83-85 and 91.) In his book, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN, published nearly eight full years AFTER he turned in his paper to Professor Meighan related to the use and rituals of Datura, Castaneda recalls a portion of his first meeting with Don Juan Matus in Nogales, Arizona, by writing:

"I then told him (Don Juan) that I was interested in obtaining information about medicinal plants. Although in truth I was almost totally ignorant about peyote, I found myself pretending that I knew a great deal, and even suggesting that it might be to his advantage to talk with me."

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The interesting part is Castaneda saying he was interested in obtaining information about medicinal plants and his specific reference to Peyote. Up to this point, according to an interview with Sam Keen in Psychology Today (1972), Castaneda's only real knowledge of Peyote was from having read The Peyote Cult (1938) by Weston La Barre. By the time the bus station encounter with Don Juan transpired Castaneda had already met the informant and knows, or is at least somewhat versed in the ACTUAL use of and NOT just reading about Datura --- as stated by Margaret Runyan in her book and quoted above as well as outlined in The Informant and Carlos Castaneda --- yet he goes on and on to Don Juan about Peyote. Why? When used as a drug or simply ingested Sacred Datura is extremely powerful and toxic. Deadly is actually more like it. Utmost care is required in it's use and it's use mandates absolute total understanding of any and all potential outcomes and consequences. Again, although Castaneda was somewhat versed in the use of Datura under the auspices of the informant, he was probably not secure enough in his own abilities for it's use without an informed guide. Don Juan Matus, at least as he is written, is more of a Peyote-man, the informant is more of a Datura-man. As Castaneda writes him, Don Juan was never too fond of what he called Yerba del Diablo, the "devil's weed." In the narative Don Juan claimed its power was not unlike that of a woman saying:

"She (Datura) is as powerful as the best of allies, but there is something I personally don't like about her. She distorts men. She gives them a taste of power too soon without fortifying their hearts and makes them domineering and unpredictable. She makes them weak in the middle of their great power."

Relatively speaking, Peyote is a much more forgiving drug than Datura --- much easier to understand, use, and administer. Only a few weeks or possibly even just days earlier than the bus station encounter, the informant, cloaked by shimmering desert heat waves, simply seemed to evaporate into the rocks and sagebrush without a trace, leaving Castaneda without a source. He wasn't about to lose the old man, hence he played down his recent experience with Datura and pushed Peyote. (see) In AUSHADHIS: Awakening and the Power of Siddhis Through Herbs a striking parallel is presented to Castaneda's account above of Don Juan stating Datura is as powerful as the best of allies, but there is something he personally didn't like about it as it distorts men and gives them a taste of power too soon:

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In Sanskrit, the method of Awakening through herbs is called Aushadhi and an Awakening thus achieved, can, under the right circumstances and conditions, albeit short term, replicate at least partially the level of a Chalabhinna, an Arhat of the third level of realization with the ability of Iddhavidha, the power of transformation.(see) It is written as well that the herbs used to awaken this potentiality should be obtained and administered ONLY through the Guru and NOT without a Guru. The reason for such is because there are certain herbs that awaken only Ida and there are others that awaken only Pingala; and there are those that can and do suppress either or both. Aushadhi or the herbal Awakening can be a very quick, albeit risky and unreliable method. It should be done only with one who is a very reliable person, who knows the science of it's use thoroughly, and versed in the arts thereof.

In the opening sentence of this footnote I write:

"When it comes to the use of drugs and hallucinogens most people associate Carlos Castaneda with Peyote. However, it wasn't Peyote but actually the plant Sacred Datura, known throughout in the desert southwest as jimsonweed, that played the primary role in his early experiences into other realities."

Please note that I wrote Sacred Datura "played the PRIMARY role in his (Carlos Castaneda's) early experiences into other realities." How reviewers, critics and the minds of the reading public skewed that primary use of Datura into that of Peyote or even mushrooms is not clear. However, Castaneda is quite clear in his writings as to the chronology of it all and the overall importance of Datura in the scheme of things. While it is true that in THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge it is shown that Castaneda's FIRST experience using any sort of psychotropic plants with Don Juan was the USE of Peyote taken on Monday, August 6, 1961, when he ingested six Peyote buttons --- the taking of which was technically a fluke and not considered much more than a test by Don Juan. If you remember, Don Juan was sitting around with a bunch of his buddies drinking tequilla and generally carousing around when one of them brought out an old coffee jar filled with Peyote buttons and offered Castaneda the chance to partake of a few. Which he did --- and after which, he ran around and around outside the house chasing the dog, barking, urinating, and throwing-up thirty times. Don Juan said it was to see if Mescalito, a sort of plant spirit, liked him or not in that Castaneda was not an Indian. Why the matter would be of any concern is not fully resolved as Don Juan's teacher, Julian Osorio, like Castaneda, was NOT of Indian extraction either, but the son of European immigrants to Mexico.

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Apparently Don Juan was satisfied that it was OK to proceed with Castaneda's apprenticeship, Indian or not, as one month later, Thursday, September 7, 1961, under Don Juan's auspices, Castaneda was gulping down a brew concocted from Datura. However, and this is a BIGhowever, in the Peyote-use situation Castaneda simply picked six buttons at random out of the coffee can after they were offered and ate them. In the second case, the use of Datura, there was a huge long drawn out ritual. Special plant selection, special digging methods, special handling methods, etc. No such ritual was hinted at or accompanied the use of the Peyote. Eighteen months later, July 4, 1963, during the most infamous of Castaneda's experiences, where he turns into a crow including the full ability to Fly --- which was promulgated by the use of Datura by the way andNOT Peyote --- it was preceded by an even more elaborate ritual than the first incident using Datura. Why? Because it was Datura that held the most respect. It was Datura that was the most potent. It was Datura that DID what it was supposed to do. It was Datura that he learned the use of from the Informant. And it is Datura, not Peyote, that contains high concentrations of tropane alkaloids --- primarily Atropine, Hyoscyamine, and Scopolamine --- all major ingredients traditionally sought out and revered in shamanistic practices for their unusual applied characteristics, especially so for incorporation into Flying Ointments.

In that there are a number of species of Datura there is some confusion as to what Datura Castaneda may have used. According to Castaneda inTHE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge a shaman-sorcerer has an Ally contained in the Datura plants commonly known asjimson weed. Don Juan called that ally by one of the Spanish names of the plant, yerba del diablo (devil's weed). According to Don Juan, as he related it to Castaneda, ANY of the species of Datura was the container of the ally. However, the sorcerer had to grow his own patch, not only in the sense that the plants were his private property, but in the sense that they were personally identified with him. As for the "separate" Daturas, more or less on an official basis --- but not necessarily on a common basis as the names, species and terms are usually intermixed (although it must be said, even plant taxonomist disagree amongst themselves whether D. stramonium and D. inoxia are different species while D. inoxia and D. metaloides are considered alternate names for the same species) --- D. stramonium is most often the Datura species refered to as jimson weed, while D. metaloides (also sometimes D. wrightii) is usually applied to Sacred Datura, and D. inoxia is Toloache. Don Juan's own plants belonged to the species inoxia, however there was no correlation between THAT fact and any differences that may have existed between any of the species of Datura accessible to him. For more on the Castaneda Peyote/Datura discussion-controversy, please see FOOTNOTE [2], The Informant and Carlos Castaneda. FOOTNOTE: [3]

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In an article titled Psychedelics and the World's Religions appearing in MAGICAL BLEND MAGAZINE, April 1993, David Christie of Millenia Press interviewed Houston Smith --- who knew Wasson well. Smith related the following regarding Wasson's comments to him about Castaneda's field notes:

"When The Teachings of Don Juan appeared, Wasson reviewed it for The New England Journal of Mycology, I think it was. Finding some of the things that Castaneda reported don Juan as saying about (mescalito) to be at odds with known botanical facts, Wasson dismissed the book as fiction. Castaneda saw the review and wrote to Wasson saying that don Juan may have been mistaken about some botanical facts, but he was not a piece of fiction. Castaneda added that he would be coming to New York in two weeks and would be happy to meet with Wasson, if Wasson was interested. "Wasson was interested, and the two met for lunch. Castaneda had brought with him a stack of field notes. Wasson's own work in Mexico had made him fluent in Spanish, so he was able to study the notes with some care. This, he told me, reversed his opinion of Castaneda and don Juan's authenticity, which he acknowledged in his review of Castaneda's next book."

In an interview article of Castaneda, published five years later in the L.A. Weekly (1998) by Celeste Fremon, currently a Visiting Assistant Professor (Literary Journalism) at UC Irvine among other things, regarding Castaneda's field notes, Fremon wrote the following:

"Yaqui expert Dr. Ralph Beals asked to see Castaneda's field notes and was unhappy when Carlos continually dodged the request. Dr. Jacques Maquet, then head of UCLA's Department of Anthropology, also objected to the fact that no hard evidence had ever been presented to back up Castaneda's accounts. 'What is essential is not simply to have the experience,' says Maquet today, 'but, if it is anthropology, to make it possible for other anthropologists to repeat the experience. Castaneda never did that. He never presented Don Juan. What he has done is not anthropology simply because he has kept it secret. He has created a brilliant fiction based on something real, but fiction nonetheless.'"(source) FOOTNOTE: [4]

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Over a period of time in his books and otherwise, Castaneda expressed his gratitude and acknowledgement to a long line of people including kudos for a number of his professors --- whether they happened to be on his graduate committee or not. Most often cited are Professor Clement Meighan who Castaneda says started and set the course of his anthropological fieldwork. Professor Harold Garfinkel who gave him the model and the spirit of exhaustive inquiry. Professor Robert Edgerton who criticized his work from its beginning, as well as Professors William Bright and Pedro Carrasco for additional criticisms and encouragement. Professor Lawrence Watson is also cited for his invaluable help in the clarification of Castaneda's analysis. FOOTNOTE: [5]

Regarding whether Bill or Castaneda had any knowledge if the old man in the bus station was Don Juan Matus or not, I write:

(It) seems quite clear that neither Bill NOR Castaneda had any sort of a clue as to who the old man was or what power he may or may not had. I don't think Bill ever did find out, and if he did, it was so many years after the fact that it just didn't matter one way or the other to him anyway.

The reason I think such is the case is because in NONE of the major introduction scenes as described by Castaneda --- which are NOT actual introduction scenes because Bill NEVER introduces them --- does Castaneda cite Bill as actually knowing or repeating Don Juan's name. To wit, in synopsis, how Castaneda presents the introductions: IN TEACHINGS (1968): A Friend (Bill) greeted (Don Juan), then immediately left (Castaneda) alone not even bothering to introduce the two of them. IN REALITY (1971): Was sitting with Bill. Bill got up and went to greet the man and forgot to introduce them. IN JOURNEY (1972): A friend had just put them in contact. He left the room and they (Don Juan and Castaneda) introduced themselves to each other. IN INFINITY (1998): Already knew about the mysterious old man who was a retired shaman. A strange anxiety suddenly possessed (Castaneda) that made him jump out of his seat and approach the old man, immediately beginning a long tirade.

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It is, however, much, much more than Castaneda's colleague Bill just NOT knowing the old man's name. Even though he had seen the old man in the past and knew he was a companion or friend of the Cloud Shaman, Bill DID NOT know --- or even have the remotest inkling --- that the old man was a powerful shaman-sorcerer. Remember from above the following quote which pretty much clarifies Bill's position:

Bill said convincingly that he had encountered people like him before, people who gave the impression of knowing a great deal. In his judgment, he said, such people were not worth the trouble, because sooner or later one could obtain the same information from someone else who did not play hard to get. He said that he had neither patience nor time for old fogies, and that it was possible that the old man was only presenting himself as being knowledgeable about herbs, when in reality he knew as little as the next man.

For the complete introductions scenes in their entirety --- as written by Castaneda --click HERE.

There is one caveat and it is found in an interview with Castaneda in 1968 on KPFA radio wherein on the transcript Castaneda says:

"I met Don Juan in a rather fortuitous manner. I was doing, at the time in 1960, I was doing, I was collecting ethnographic data on the use of medicinal plants among the Arizona Indians. And a friend of mine who was my guide on that enterprise knew about Don Juan. He knew that Don Juan was a very learned man in the use of plants and he intended to introduce me to him, but he never got around to do that. One day when I was about to return to Los Angeles, we happened to see him at a bus station, and my friend went over to talk to him. Then he introduced me to the man and I began to tell him that my interests was plants, and that, especially about peyote, because somebody had told me that this old man was very learned in the use of peyote.

Which sounds as though his friend, which is presumed to be his anthropological and Road Trip bus station colleague Bill --- because in Castaneda's books, both in the past and those at the time yet to be published, it is --- and in this interview, unlike how he was written about other times, Bill knows the "old man" and knows he is not just some old fogie but someone of some consequence.

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In the interview Castaneda says Bill "knew about Don Juan" and that he "knows that Don Juan was a very learned man in the use of plants." As clear as that sounds it still doesn't mean that Bill knows the old man is Don Juan, only that he knew OF him and that he was a very learned man in the use of plants --- which is no secret. After all Bill was quite clear that he knew the "old man" was a companion or a teacher of the Cloud Shaman and that he had seen both of them together in the distance various times many years ago. It is Castaneda that eliminates the "old man" reference and interjects the name Don Juan into the interview. It is presented to the listener as though Don Juan's name was known, however it was really presented by Castaneda after the fact --- eight years after the fact. By then everybody with any interest knew the "old man" in the bus station was, according to Castaneda, Don Juan, so HE calls him Don Juan. If you notice in ALL four of the books cited above, Bill does not, in any instance, use Don Juan's name OR actually introduce Castaneda and the "old man" to each other. He either immediately left, forgot to introduce them, or, as in the last case, Bill wasn't even mentioned and Castaneda took it upon himself. Why in all the above scenarios did Bill NOT introduce the two of them together? Simply put, Bill did just not know the old man's name, period. Rather than be embarrassed he just slinked away. Again, for the complete set of introductions scenes in their entirety as written by Castaneda, click HERE. An introduction of a totally different type, albeit however brief, is my own connection to Carlos Castaneda in my youth. As to how that connection came about, that is, my meeting with Castaneda, please see: CARLOS CASTANEDA: Before Don Juan. C. Scott Littleton (1933 - 2010) was most recently untl his untimely death, a Professor of Anthropology, Emeritus, and former Chair of the Department of Anthropology at Occidental College in Los Angeles, California. Littleton joined the Occidental faculty in 1962, retiring at the end of the spring semester, 2002. Littleton met Castaneda for the first time in Lessa's office at UCLA the same day he sat in on Castaneda's seminar presentation. The two hit it off immediately and because of the level of their friendship, Littleton had Castaneda as a most willing guest lecturer in his classes at both Occidental and UCLA Extension on many occasions. During the winter of 1942, only a few months into World War II, when Littleton was eight years old, he was living in a small beach community along the coast of Southern California and experienced a most unsual event. In the early morning hours of February 25, 1942 he and his whole family were awakened by the sounds of air raid sirens and air defense guns. Searchlights had a huge airborne object of an unknown type and unknown origin within their sights and whatever the object was it was impervious to the continuing barrage and pounding of seemingly direct hits from anti-aircraft fire. Coming to be called the UFO Over Los Angeles or the Battle of L.A., the object turned inland and disappeared into the night over what was then thinly populated farmland and oilfields, but not without first impacting Littleton for the rest of his life. He has since gone on to do intensive academic research into the mythological dimensions of the UFO phenomenon. In so saying, he has sometimes indulged on his suspicions that Castaneda's experiences reflected a UFO connection -- a possibility Littleton raised with Castaneda personally on several occasions despite

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the absence of clear-cut UFO imagery in his writings --- and Castaneda reportedly told him that he'd "look into it." As an extra added insight it should be brought to your attention that before Littleton became a professor at Occidental College he was a student not unlike Castaneda, albeit a graduate student, in the Department of Anthropology at UCLA. One of his teachers was a noted professor by the name of William A. Lessa. Littleton is quoted as saying that Lessa told him: "...he had this Peruvian guy in his class who'd collected the best information from a shaman he'd ever seen, bar none..." Some people have suggested that the above quote attributed to Lessa could not be true in that a professor of Lessa's status would NEVER use the word "shaman." In so saying, the idea is to undermine the statement so it could never have been said. However, that the word "shaman" would NOT be used by Lessa and others of his ilk is an outsider's view. When individuals or closed groups of insiders such as Lessa and Littleton get together they simply cut to the quick and political correctness drops by the wayside. It is not unlike Blacks, for example. Within their own circles or amongst their close friends they can and do use the N-word. If an outsider or White person were to join the group and start throwing the word around there would be hell to pay.

Source for both Littleton comments, the one on Castaneda and UFOs as well as Lessa's shaman comment, can be found in the following email titled: CREATE, COMMUNICATE, COLLABORATE, Subject: Re: A good read; Sat, 30 Jun 2001 14:59:12 -0700 (PDT); From: "C. Scott Littleton" To: "Dr. Jack Sarfatti." (see)

CARLOS CASTANEDA

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DON JUAN MATUS AND THE NOGALES BUS STATION MEETING

"I was waiting in a border town for a Greyhound bus talking with a friend who had been my guide and helper . . . . Suddenly he leaned toward me and whispered that the man, a white-haired old Indian, who was sitting in front of the window was very learned about plants, especially peyote. I asked my friend to introduce me to this man." Carlos Castaneda, The Teachings of Don Juan (1968) "I was sitting with Bill, a friend of mine, in a bus depot in a border town in Arizona. We were very quiet. In the late afternoon the summer heat seemed unbearable. Suddenly he leaned over and tapped me on the shoulder. 'There's the man I told you about,' he said in a low voice." Carlos Castaneda, A Separate Reality (1971)

One fateful day sometime late in the summer of 1960, a day that, although running thick with destiny, found three men sitting uneventfully amongst a number of other passengers and highly transitory types in the waiting room of a small bus station in the Arizona border town of Nogales. The day was the exact same day, as described in the two paragraphs above, that Carlos Castaneda met for the very first time, the Yaqui Indian shaman-sorcerer, Don Juan Matus that he would soon apprentice under. Two of the men in the station were waiting to board a Greyhound bus to Los Angeles. One of the two WAS Castaneda, the soon to be successful author of a
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dozen best selling books. The second man, who was not traveling that day, was the colleague friend of Castaneda, Bill, that brought him to the bus depot. The third man, like Castaneda, sitting uneventfully in the bus station that prognostic day and waiting for the bus to Los Angeles, was me. I had ended up in Nogales because a few years out of high school and tired of working as a technical illustrator --- all the while being faced by the draft in the next few years or so --- I decided to take a leave of absence and head into Mexico with a buddy of mine. He had bought a used six-cylinder 1951 Chevy panel truck that was in pretty good shape and over a period of a few months we outfitted it like a camper with fold down bunks, table, sink, stove, and portable toilet. Early one Saturday morning we crossed into Mexico at the Tiajuana border with no idea how long we were going to be gone. After traveling east a short distance to Tecate we sort of turned around and doubled back toward the Baja Pacific coast ending up near Ensanada. From there we went south on some pretty crummy roads eventually going eastward across the peninsula to the little town of Santa Rosalia, taking a ferry across the Sea of Cortez to Guaymas.(see) Continuing on we passed through Guadalajara, turning toward Zacatecas to see the mysterious ancient ruins of La Quemada, aka Chicomostoc, ending with an interesting set of results.(see) We then circled back toward Lake Chapala, San Miguel Allende and a bunch of other places ending up seeing the pyramids in Mexico City, the Great Pyramid of Cholula, and Mayan Ruins in the Yucatan. We stopped whenever we wanted and stayed as long as we wanted. Compared to most of the people in the countryside we came across, as well as the locals in the towns we went through, we had all the money we needed to spend on anything we wanted including gas, food, lodging, girls, and beer. Days turned into weeks, weeks into months. Eventually we made a decision to return home. We headed north along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico through Vera Cruz then westward inland toward central Mexico turning north along the spine of the Sierra Madres. It was nearing the end of the summer of 1960 when we found ourselves in a little northern Mexican town somewhat south of the Arizona-Mexico border called Magdalena. While there my buddy got hooked up with a beautiful raven-haired local girl and wanted to stay a few days. She told us there was a horse ranch nearby owned by a guy named Maldonado that raised, sold and rented horses and she thought going horseback riding would be fun. The girl, after fixing me up with a girlfriend of hers --- and my buddy and I truly not thinking with much more than our little heads --- headed out to the ranch. The ranch turned out to be a fairly big spread with it's own railroad spur and a rather nice hacienda type house with several out buildings and modern equipment --tractors and such --- all pretty nice by local Mexican standards. As a matter of fact it was my suspicion that the two girls we were with probably wouldn't even be able to access the ranch if they had not been traveling with us.

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It had been at least six years since I had been on a horse, and even though people say it is just like riding a bicycle, that is, you never forget, for me it wasn't quite like that. About forty-five minutes into the ride something spooked my horse and not having the expertise to handle her I was thrown from the saddle. My foot got stuck in the stirrup and before I could work it loose and the horse stopped I had been dragged over the gravely soil for quite some distance. Needless to say the event ruined the whole day. I went back to the hotel to recuperate. A couple of days passed and in the meantime my full of hormones buddy took off to parts unknown with the truck and girl he had met. With no sign of him returning anytime soon and being sore and achy all over with possible broken bones and internal injuries, I made the decision to get back home to the states where I hoped a doctor could look me over. The owner of the ranch had given me some medicine to help reduce the pain -- which I am sure was intended for horses --- and, although it reduced the pain quickly and efficiently, it put me into a sort of cloud-like stupor. Feeling a need to stay at the very least with a semi-clear mind, being in a foreign country and all with no friends and not knowing anybody, I opted not to take any more after the second day.

The road from Magdalena leads directly to Nogales. I got off on the Mexican side and walked across the border to the U.S. side --- heading straight for the bus station. Because of the injuries I was holding myself up and steadying my pace with a walking stick. So too, despite the heat of the day, in that the side of my face was so scratched up and wasn't really healed, I was wearing a hooded sweatshirt pulled up over my head along with a large pair of dark glasses. After buying a ticket to Los Angeles I began feeling somewhat more in control of things being back in the states. Because of that safety net, and since I was still in such pain, I took some of the medicine the ranch owner gave me --- then settled in on one of the benches. The bus station was not what I would call extremely busy, however people did keep coming and going and I soon found myself constantly moving farther and farther down so people traveling together could sit together. In the process, without realizing it, I had moved some distance away from my walking stick. I was sitting in this sort of oncoming stupor as the medicine began kicking in looking out across the depot from a newly aquired vantage point when out of the blue I saw two people I thought for sure I recognized sitting together talking. Knowing one of the men without a full and total element of doubt was kind of on the iffy side, but I was sure I had met him in my youth many years before, a onetime Pothunter turned reputable archaeologist that I knew as Larry, whose full name was William Lawrence Campbell, known in and around the desert southwest as Cactus Jack. As a young boy a man that I was told was an archaeologist had given me my first prospector's pick, an item I had treasured way into young adulthood. Unexpectantly, some six, possibly eight years after the bus station encounter we are talking about here, while traveling with myUncle and a tribal spiritual elder, I briefly crossed paths with Campbell when he stepped up to our table in a small roadside cafe near Taos, New
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Mexico. In the process of that meeting not only did he confirm he was indeed the man that had given me the prospector's pick when I was a boy I also recognized him as being the man I had seen that fateful day in Nogales. Although the subject of Castaneda came up and he talked openly about a number of things related to Castaneda with my uncle and the elder during the hour or so we were together that day, before I was able to turn the topic of the discussion to the bus station specifically, apparently done with HIS side of the conversation, he finished his meal and without any attempt to pay, got up, went to the mens room, then simply left.[1]

The other man sitting in the bus station that day I knew I knew for sure. It was Carlos Castaneda. I had seen and talked to Castaneda probably only a few weeks, possibly just days, before my buddy and I left on our trip to Mexico some months before.[2] Why either Castaneda or Campbell would be in a bus station in Nogales in the heat of the summer and how either of them would even know each other was a mystery to me. Of course, although the bus station was not very large, because of my disguise, neither of them, even though they may have noticed me, would not have recognized me. When I started to get up to go over to pay my respects and ask what the heck the two of them were doing in Nogales I discovered my walking stick was either gone or out of reach. Plus, my mind was beginning to haze over from the medicine, sort of removing me from the surroundings. Before I was able to get to my walking stick and stand up someone put their hands on both of my shoulders from behind, gently inhibiting my ability to get up. It was my buddy. He told me that after several days with the local raven-haired Mexican girl, followed by a somewhat sizable argument between the two, he decided to check in on how I was doing at the place we had been staying in Magdalena. There he learned I had gone north on my own. Figuring the only way home after crossing the border would be the bus station in Nogales he looked there first. He basically picked me up under the arms and dragged me out to the truck, all the time me trying to tell him I had two friends in the depot I needed to talk to. I was jarred out of a deep sleep the next day hundreds and hundreds of miles from the bus depot after we got stopped at a routine highway immigration check point outside of Oceanside, California and the officials wanted to see who the "dead guy" was laying on the floor in the back of the truck. Later on, after motoring north then west toward the South Bay, with me sitting back in my usual spot in the front seat on the shotgun side, I asked my buddy why he didn't let me see my two friends at the bus station. He said I could NOT have been at the bus station for any length of time by the time he arrived and figured there was no way I could have any friends of any stature there, guessing I must have been hallucinating or something. Taking it upon himself he simply took me out to the truck, threw me on the on the bunk in the back, and headed home. After we returned from our trip to Mexico my buddy and I basically went our separate ways. He got married and bought a hardware store and I returned to work for a brief time then turned my attention to full time study practice in Zen under the
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auspices of my Mentor. After a rare opportunity arose, my mentor arranged for me to study under the venerated Japanese Zen master Yasutani Hakuun Roshi --without much success on my part it must be added. Then, pretty much as expected, Uncle Sam seemed to need me more and I was drafted into the Army. (see) Except on the rare occasion when my buddy and I inadvertently crossed paths someplace we never really saw much of each other after I was drafted. In the meantime the 1960 incident in the bus station slowly slipped away from my my memory banks, and, except for the one short interlude mentioned below, it was all but forgotten primarily because during the intervening years a number of things happened incuding me Doing Hard Time In A Zen Monastery that completely pushed back any thought or concern with Carlos Castaneda or bus stations --- until 1968 that is. Then, in 1968, Castaneda's first book, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge, was printed. The book became a huge, best selling success and almost overnight Castaneda became a public icon and incredibly wealthy --- with the Nogales bus station playing a key role.

The one short interlude that briefly interrupted the all but forgotten portion of the incident transpired three years after my initial 1960 bus station visit --- while, of all things, I was still in the Army. At the end of August, 1963, during the Martin Luther King speech, I was a member of a team operating classified transmitting equipment in a AN/GRC 26-D communication van parked along the beltway in Washington D.C. a few miles away from the Lincoln Memorial, the site of the King speech. Somewhere in there, either before or after the King speech, and I don't remember which because at the time I was doing all kinds of travel for the military, for whatever reason, the Army decided they wanted me to participate in other extra-curricular military activites for a couple of weeks out west. They put me, along with a handful of other slovenly GI types, on board an unmarked company C-53 with all the windows covered over on the inside by aluminum foil and masking tape and flew us out on a cross-country middle-of-thenight flight to a place called Pinal Air Park, sometimes called Marana Air Park, near Marana, Arizona. The air park is a small off-the-radar former air field located about halfway between Phoenix and Tucson and basically run for the most part now by Evergreen, a former CIA subsidiary. Interestingly enough, for our purposes here, the air park, being in Marana, is located probably less than an hour and a half drive over a wide open desert highway from Nogales. When we finally caught a weekend break in our duties, a few GIs and myself, dressed in our best-cover civilian attire, albeit sporting white sidewall haircuts, crossed into Mexico at the Nogales gate for a few days of non-military extracurricular activities of our own making.
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It had been three years, and because of the training and the transition between civilian life and the military, a lifetime ago, since I had been in Nogales following the horseback accident. For some unexplained reason ever since the Army had sent me to Arizona and I discovered how close I was to Nogales I had been chaffing at the bit to get back to see the bus station. The first chance I got I broke away from my group of buddies and crossed back over the border to the U.S. side and headed straight to the depot. Why I am not sure. It was almost as though I was expecting to meet someone or experience some sort of a feeling about something. But nothing. In 1963 it was still a good five years before Castaneda's book was to be published. Any meaning regarding the station in relation to Castaneda or Don Juan Matus was yet to bear any significance. Even so, there I was walking around almost in reverence, looking in all the nooks and crannies, both inside and out, drawn as though on a spiritual quest. To tell the truth, even though it had been only three years since I had been there I was not able to fully experience a total recall of the place, only a vague remembrance. Walking across the border and to the bus station I knew I had been there and seen the place before, but even so, for me it was more like standing in front of Edward Hopper's painting Nighthawks. Something about it is familiar and maybe even hauntingly based on reality, yet, although you know you could fit in and might even belong, you are still somehow removed because you know it is a painting and cannot step into it.

NIGHTHAWKS by Edward Hopper. Oil, 1942, 30X60 inches. Chicago Art Institute

Flash forward now to present day and a fresh perspective. A contempory reader of my works by the name of John Esposito informs me that after coming across DON JUAN MATUS: Real or Imagined on the internet he decided to check out the Nogales Greyhound Station for himself. Since I haven't been back since that 1963 visit Esposito offers some interesting insights. Esposito writes:
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Of course this is 46 years later, but the station is in an old building in the old part of town, and is probably the same station. Naturally, it might have had some renovations, in particular new seats (i.e. newer than 1960). It is not at all contradictory for CC to have claimed that DJ was "seated on a bench by the corner" 30 years after claiming that he was "sitting in front of the window." This is because the seating area is all but surrounded by windows. There are windows on two sides, the counter on the third side, and a niche with vending machines and no seats on the fourth. In other words, ALL of the seats are near windows, regardless of whether they're in corners. Both front corners of the seats are near windows, as is one of the back corners, too. The only inconsistency I see is that there are no benches, but it seems very likely that the old benches were replaced with the rows of connected plastic seats within the last few decades. I do, however, see a problem with CC's claim that DJ walked 50 yards to his bus (Active Side of Infinity, p. 39). It hardly seems likely that it was even 50 FEET, but then it's all too easy to exaggerate with numbers, and CC may have been a world class exaggerator! It's trivial, but it bothered me because it caused me -- for decades -- to visualize the event quite differently. I was expecting a dusty rural bus station, and what I got was quite urban, right at a very busy border crossing. (see)

In Castaneda's first book, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge, and in most of the other books in the series afterwards, Castaneda goes on-and-on one way or the other in his various bus station Introduction Scenes of how, BECAUSE of being in the depot that day in Nogales following the Road Trip with his colleague Bill, he met the shaman-sorcerer he calls Don Juan Matus --the man he not only eventually apprenticed under, but who also became the main thesis he wrapped all his best selling books around. Because of that alleged bus station meeting, when people hear about ME being in the Greyhound bus station in Nogales in what appears to be the exact same time as Castaneda and how he describes it in his books, they always want to know if I saw Don Juan or the "white haired old indian" in the bus station too --- AND IF SO, did I see Castaneda talking or interacting with him in any way, shape or form. Without beating around the bush, the answer is basically a flat NO --- although I must admit that doesn't mean the meeting did not happen, only that I wasn't witness to such a fact. The closest that any of what Castaneda writes about happened just as I was trying to get up but couldn't because I no longer had my walking stick with me nor was it within reach. As I tried to move I knocked my dark glasses askew across my face
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and before I could readjust them, my eyes, apparently with pupils dialated wide open from the medicine, allowed a huge amount of bright light to pour in inhibiting my ability to see clearly.

Suddenly, directly in front of me blocking most of the light pouring into the room and my eyes, a darkened silhouette of what looked to be a white haired old indian, who could have been anybody, seemed to appear out of nowhere. He stood silently before me, and as my eyes cleared, without a word handed me my walking stick. From that moment on, replicating almost down to the letter my experience as described in THE MEETING: An Untold Story of Sri Ramana, the whole episode began to flow forward as though in slow motion and I somehow felt totally absorbed yet at the sametime, separated and far removed from my surroundings. All the while the phenomenon unfolded, taking forever as it did, there was a dominating background ringing sensation in my ears similar to that caused by pressure deep under water that inturn disallowed me to construct clear, conscious everyday thoughts. Before I could gather my abilities to respond, which I didn't necessarily want to anyway because it felt so good, my buddy interceded and I ended up in the truck only to wake up days later in California, long gone from Arizona, Nogales, Castaneda, and things shaman. The second thing most people want to know after I mention the "white haired old Indian" in the bus station handing me my walking stick is: Did I recognize him? For more on that, please see Footnote [3], below. Finally, for most people, the most staggering question after the "white haired old Indian and if I saw him or not" question IS --- since I was at the bus station on the same day in question that I saw Castaneda and, as stated above, reported seeing a "number of other passengers and highly transitory types in the waiting room" as well

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--- WHY is it that NONE of them, or for that fact anybody else, EVER come forward like I have and stated they saw Castaneda there too? Why only me? The answer is quite simple. For one thing I had met and interacted with Castaneda previously. I knew him. It would have been highly unusual that anybody else traveling or going in and out of that funky little border town bus station that day for any reason would have known or recognized him. Most people think of Castaneda as they have come to know him, famous. And he was, but only so AFTER his first book was published. However, as I have presented in CARLOS CASTANEDA: Before Don Juan, prior to his book being published "Castaneda wasn't even 'Castaneda.'" If you recall, the bus station incident did not transpire until after the Road Trip ended in the summer of 1960. Castaneda's first book was not even released for public consumption until 1968, EIGHT full years after the Road Trip/Bus Station episode. Up until that time (the release of his book), for the most part, nobody had ever heard of Castaneda. Before his book Castaneda was truly not much more than a cipher of an undergraduate lost among hundreds of similar unheralded blank-faced vacuous students enrolled in the anthropology department at UCLA. It isn't likely anyone at anyplace or anytime would have recognized him, know him, or know of him beyond the small circle of hibituates he typically traveled in.[4] Why has Bill not come forward? In the beginning it could be he was never aware he was Bill --- or for that matter, never aware in the beginning that the young Hispanic he was traveling with eventually turned out to be Carlos Castaneda. So too, in either of the two cases, if he found out or become aware of the situation later in the scheme of things relative to his life, maybe, on an official level, he just let it go.[5].

After reading the Don Juan books years later I always ask myself, and continue to wondered to this day, if my Mexico traveling buddy had NOTshown up when he did and stopped me from going across the bus station, and instead I interacted with Castaneda and his colleague at such a level that I dominated their time and redirected their attention, would Castaneda have missed altogether meeting the old man he says turned out to be the shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus? Castaneda would have continued to be a nobody and Don Juan would have gone unhearlded. Or would've they? If nothing else, Castaneda might have met Don Juan as preordained, but most likely I would have been on the same bus to L.A. with him, and since we knew each other and Bill wasn't riding with him that day, most likely Castaneda and I would have sat together --- which inturn could have modified the downstream outflow for both of us.

GRANDFATHER CACHORA:

At the very beginning of my trip into Mexico, sometime shortly after crossing the border and turning toward the east, my buddy and I stopped at a small cantina just
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outside Tecate to eat. The eating area was separated from the bar by a wall with a double-wide arched opening between the rooms about midway down. A rather loud discussion on the bar side degenerated into a fight between two men ending with one of the men stabbing the other. The stabbed man stumbled into the eating area basically falling across our table, dying. Everybody scrambled to get out. Someone in broken english told us we should get the hell out before the authorities arrived. Just as we started to move cop types were coming in the front door on the bar side. Some guy running by motioned us to follow him. We dashed through the kitchen and out into a darkened dirt alley behind the cantina. Dogs were barking. The street had a muddy center gutter I had to jump. Someone pulled us through a door of a building across the way that was lit only by a dim lantern --- which was instantly blown out and the door locked behind us from the inside. Before the room went dark I could just barely make out a dozen or more people squatted along the walls and below the windows. We waited the longest time. Finally the dogs stopped barking and people began leaving. A smattering of people stayed and my buddy, who could speak and understand a little spanish, said he had been told it would probably be best if we stuck around a little longer as well. If the man that was stabbed died of his wounds that night or if the man that did the stabbing joined us in the room across the alley I never learned. There was though, a sort of strange man, about 45 or 50 years old that was insisted on by others in joining us on our drive to the coast the next morning. A man that when, a couple of hours into our trip we stopped along the road to pee, he just wandered off into the desert and did not come back. My buddy told me while I was dozing off the night before the man had performed some kind of a doctoring or healing ritual over the stabbed man in a room adjacent the room we hid in. In so many words, as best my buddy was able to translate it, the man said he was a Yaqui, and a shaman of sorts, who called himself Abeulo Cachora Matorral, abeulo being the spanish word for grandfather --- a rather funny word to ascribe to oneself when one is only 45 or 50 years old. Although I did not know it at the time, in an interesting turn of fate, the man turned out to be Tezlcazi Guitimea Cachora, Grandfather Cachora, a man who thought by many to be the "real" Don Juan Matus. I can say for certain though, that he was NOT, that is not, the old man mentioned above I saw at the bus station. See also Ken Eagle Feather.

ALEX APOSTOLIDES A half of dozen years or so after my trip to Mexico, sometime into the mid-to-late 1960s, while visiting the mining camp compound of an old Mojave Desert prospector by the name of Walt Bickel I was introduced to a man named Alex Apostolides (1923-2005). In those days Apostolides was doing a variety archaeological surveys and said to be a Field Director in archaeology for UCLA. In an excellent, quick, one paragraph synopsis, Bill Gann, one of Apostolides foremost advocates, writes the following regarding a potential connection between Apostolides and Castaneda:
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"(Castaneda) and Alex were colleagues at UCLA back in the Sixties. The great sorcerer discussed the shamanic world with Alex, long before he published his many mystical books. "One wonders if Castaneda learned a thing or two from Apostolides, and if some of this knowledge later turned up in the guru's mystic writings. As an archeologist, Alex knew Mexico well and worked the ancient Aztec and Maya digs for many years. He was in the archeology department at UCLA when Castaneda was still working on his thesis that was later published as "The Teachings of Don Juan." Some have even implied that Alex was Castaneda's model for his famous Yaqui Indian sorcerer."(source)

Following several years of on-and-off archaeologist related work in Mexico (as well as a few other places) Apostolides settled down in El Paso, Texas. Sometime in or around 1978 (plus-or-minus a year or two) he was on his way back from Utah after having participated in a study that had to do with rock art. He had come across an ancient Native American petrograph that he thought might depict the Crab Nebula super nova of 1054 AD. Apostolides contacted a professor at UCLA given credit for having introduced Carlos Castaneda to shamanism by the name of Clement Meighanwho had discovered similar petrographs on the Baja peninsula in 1962. Meighan suggested several people close by in the general Utah, New Mexico area that might help to confirm Apostolides' suspicions, of which my uncle was one. It was because of that suggestion he and my uncle met. What was staggering to Apostolides was that the brother of my uncle (my father) was a long time friend of Walt Bickel from the old days and, as a matter of fact, as written about in The Tree, my father was Bickel's VERY FIRST mining partner. During Bickel's later years, the time we are talking about here, Apostolides and Bickel had developed a very close friendship. As it was, Apostolides thought so much of Bickel and the area he operated in that he had his ashes dispersed at the base of Black Mountain just north of Bickel's camp when he died --- which all tied together laid the groundwork for a strong mutual understanding between Apostolides and my uncle. What is of interest to us here is when casual conversation between Apostolides and my uncle somehow turned to Castaneda --- AND how it was related back to me by my uncle a few years later --- Apostolides, at least by the time of their meeting in the late 1970s, had met William Lawrence Campbell and was aware by then that Campbell was the "Bill" in Castaneda's works.(see) Apostolides told my uncle that before he went into Mexico the archaeological team he was coordinating his efforts with was looking to recruit one or two additional team members and Campbell showed up as a potential candidate. Campbell had come highly recommended, however, since the archaeological investigations centered around Mayan sites in Mexico and possibly other countries such as Honduras, Guatemala, et al, any dig workers over any extended period of time would be required to have passports. The
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thing is, and unusually so for an experienced archaeologist, Campbell did not have a passport. At first the interviewers thought he just needed to renew his, but, as it turned out, he said he never had one. Prior to any of those formal interview session and it became clear that Campbell would not be able to participate, Apostolides --- who was not part of the the interview team and maybe even being recruited himself --- and Campbell had sat around in casual conversations quaffing down a few beers over a period of several days bullshitting. During those conversations, because Apostolides knew Bickle and also knew my dad had been Bickle's first mining partner, he told Campbell that he had met me sometime before Castaneda's first book was published. He also told Campbell that I had told him I had seen Castaneda andanother man I knew sitting together and talking at a bus station in Nogales at the end of the summer of 1960. Campbell said he also knew me, having met me a few times in conjunction with my uncle, the last time being maybe 1968 or so in Taos, New Mexico. However, in a very positive confirmation of the facts he did admit to Apostolides it was true that he had been at the bus station with Castaneda at the time so stated and was sure he was most likely the other man, BUT, and he was sure of this, he did not recall seeing me there. He did say he and Castaneda had met with my uncle a few weeks before in the desert but there was no sign of me traveling or being with my uncle at the time either that he had any recollection of. He also said when he and I had met ten years before (i.e., circa 1968) in Taos and we had breakfast or lunch together --- a rather extended meal that spanned a respectable period of time --- I didn't bring it up or say anything one way or the other about having had seen him in Nogales.

NOTE: If you have not read any of the Footnotes as of yet please scroll down toward the bottom of the page. FOOTNOTE: [1]

If you read the page on William Lawrence Campbell reached here, through the Pothunter link, or through the previously cited links above, you will have learned that, at least in his later years anyway, Campbell was known for his ability to spin tall tales. One of the stories he told, and I cannot be sure how accurate it is, involved Carlos Castaneda. As mentioned above, my uncle and I had been sitting in a small cafe near Taos, New Mexico with a tribal elder friend when Campbell, whom my uncle seemed to know, stepped up to the table and invited himself to join us. Before long the conversation turned to Castaneda and Campbell told the following story. However, before we go on, what he told should be prefaced with what I wrote in theRoad Trip:
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Why has Bill not come forward? It could be he was never aware he was Bill --- or for that matter, never aware either, that the young Hispanic he was traveling with eventually turned out to be Carlos Castaneda. So too, in either of the two cases, if he found out or become aware of the situation later in the scheme of things relative to his life, maybe, on an official level, he just let it go.

It was well after the fact that Campbell learned that the young Hispanic he was traveling with throughout the desert southwest on the Road Trip eventually turned out to be Carlos Castaneda. When the incident below happened Castaneda wasn't even "Castaneda," nor did Bill ever find out who he was until years later. If you recall, the Road Trip ended in the summer of 1960. Castaneda's first book was not even published or released for public consumption until 1968, EIGHT full years after the Road Trip. Up until that time (the release of his book), for the most part, nobody had ever heard of Castaneda. So said, even though Castaneda is called Castaneda by Campbell, and thus then by me in the text, at the time of the conversation in the desert we are talking about here (i.e., at the archaeology site during the late spring, early summer of 1960), Castaneda was NOT the Carlos Castaneda he came to be AFTER he met Don Juan Matus, the powerful Yaqui Indian shaman-sorcerer he apprenticed under. Within the bounds of memory, as told by Campbell over coffee and food in the cafe near Taos I present the following:

"Castaneda had shown up at the archaeology dig site a few days earlier. The two of us had seen each other or passed by each other on a number of occasions at the site, but we were yet to meet or talk. Although other student level people were either working at the dig and/or participating in various aspects of camp maintenance, Castaneda wasn't. He basically went around most of the day bugging high ranking anthropologists asking nothing but a continuous stream of unending questions. As I viewed it, in that he didn't seem to be there to participate in the dig nor particularly willing to help around the camp Castaneda wasn't being received very favorably by anybody at any level. "It was just after sunset and a number of us, like we often did, were gathered around the fire bullshitting and going over the days events in the evening twilight. Castaneda had joined the group but basically just sitting there looking at the fire. Sitting directly across from him was a young woman that I had not seen before who had been reading a book until it got too dark to see. Her legs and lap were partially covered with a blanket and when the darkness set in she had placed the book on her lap folded open to the page where she had left off, with the cover facing up. I was just in the process of introducing myself to Castaneda, shaking his hand and telling him my name was Campbell like in the soup when a powerful gust of wind suddenly came out of nowhere -- like a Vortex or dust devil --- which was a nearly impossible happenstance for so late in the day. The wind tore loose part of a close by canvas
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shelter top and the sudden noise of the flapping canvas and swirling dirt and dust must have startled the woman with the book because without thinking she jumped to her feet and in doing so, grabbing the blanket, the open book fell from her lap right into the fire. "Without a moment of hesitation Castaneda reached into the fire and pulled out the book, brushing it off and folding it closed. He then handed the book back to the woman. When he did he looked at the title then at me. The title of the bookThe Hero With A Thousand Faces (1949) by Joseph Campbell. When he looked back at the woman she was gone."

The reason I am able to recall Campbell's story so vividly from that day in the cafe is because of how fascinating all of the incredible coincidences seemed to be, yet how nonchalant both my uncle and the tribal elder reacted to it all. Years later I discussed the incident over a period of some hours in some depth with my uncle and he basically dismissed the whole thing saying Campbell was merely a gadfly. However, I looked at the incident somewhat differently. In Castaneda's eighth book Power of Silence, Don Juan tells Castaneda that when a person's Spirit has something extremely important to communicate, it will "knock" three times. As found in CASTING BONES: The Art of Divination if one has the ability or is spiritually intune with such things, three clear, unambiguous "meaningful coincidences" will be received showing that a certain decision is needed to be made or that an indication of a prediction is correct:

1. Campbell steps up to introduce himself to Castaneda. As soon as he says his name an unusual (for that time of day) vortex-like gust of wind comes up and blows loose a nearby canvas shelter top. 2. The noise startles the woman sitting directly across from Castaneda that had been reading a book. She jumps up and the book falls into the fire. 3. Instinctively Castaneda reaches into the fire and pulls out the book. When he hands it to the woman he sees the title of the book isThe Hero With A Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell.

Even though I mention I discussed the incident above many years after our conversation in the cafe and my uncle basically dismissed the whole thing saying Campbell was merely a gadfly, he did not dismiss everything totally. In so saying, he still knew and maintained a great respect for the natural order of things, the unfolding of events, the role of those involved in the events, and the power within and behind those events. For example, during that later discussion or one closely related, I tried to get my uncle to clarify some of my questions regarding the emaciated man thought by me to possibly be the Death Defier. The following,
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regarding that discussion, is found in a footnote to Julian Osorio, said by Castaneda to be Don Juan's master teacher:

During that discussion I tried to entice him (my uncle at the original source) to repeat for me what he had said that night outside the cave, verbatim, in whatever language it was, then translate into English the actual indepth meaning behind the words. He told me it ended that night in front of the cave and not to concern myself. However, he refused to say the Defier's name out loud intimating that he, my uncle -- and I quote --- "did not want to be found." According to Wallace, as told to her by a Castaneda confidant, by invoking the Death Defier's name in Tula, that is Nahuatl, the Defier's spirit will awaken.

So said, my uncle saying Campbell was a gadfly or not, my uncle still carried ahead of himself that great respect in the unfolding of events. That respect --- if you want to call it that --- truly shows up in the above where my uncle says he refused to say the Defier's name out loud intimating that he, my uncle --- and I quote --- "did not want to be found." It shows up over and over in his actions as well as in the many conversations I had with him, one example being the above interaction between the mysterious woman at the firepit and Campbell. Regarding that interaction, Campbell said:

"Without a moment of hesitation Castaneda reached into the fire and pulled out the book, brushing it off and folding it closed. He then handed the book back to the woman. When he did he looked at the title then at me. The title of the bookThe Hero With A Thousand Faces (1949) by Joseph Campbell. When he looked back at the woman she was gone."

My uncle told me that even though Castaneda looked back immediately after handing the book to the woman and she was gone, such was not the case with what Campbell saw from his vantage point across the fire. If you recall it was just after sunset and a number of people, including Campbell and Castaneda were gathered around the fire talking and going over the days events in the evening twilight. Campbell told my uncle, even though the woman was gone for Castaneda in the almost micro-second it took him to look back, such was not the case for himself. Campbell said, looking toward the woman across the fire after Castaneda handed her the book, he caught a glimpse of her dark silhouette between the flames rising superimposed against the twilight sky, and then almost in a wisp of smoke the blackened silhouette seemed to sail through the air beyond view in the darkness.

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In that I had a similar incident transprire as a young boy at the Sun Dagger site, I was curious if it could have been the same woman. As it turned out she did not seem to be. However, as part of that initial curiosity, when I asked my uncle if Campbell had ever made mention of what the woman looked like he said he had asked Campbell once. Campbell told him he had never seen the woman around the camp previously and only saw her briefly for a few moments across the fire that night. But, if he had to describe her, he thought she did not seem like a student or dig worker, but, although not dressed in the fashion of an Indian woman, more like what Hollywood thought a movie Indian woman should look like. Fairly good looking, probably around thirty with a somewhat Rubenesque body. She had a full face, high cheekbones and long black hair done in two long braids. In Castaneda's third book Journey to Ixtlan (1972) in a section called 'A Worthy Opponent' dated December 11, 1962, Castaneda writes that over a month before he had a horrendous confrontation with a sorceress called 'la Catalina.' 'La Catalina' had been mentioned briefly previously in his first book with a date being cited by him as November 23, 1961, intimating from the words of Don Juan Matus that it was the very first time he, Castaneda, became aware of her existance. However, it wasn't until Journey to Ixtlan was released that Castaneda attemped a visual description of what "la Catalina" looked like:

I scrutinized her carefully, and concluded that she was a beautiful woman. She was very dark and had a plump body, but she seemed to be strong and muscular. She had a round full face with high cheekbones and two long braids of jet black hair. What surprised me the most was her youth. She was at the most in her early thirties.

Castaneda's book Journey to Ixtlan did not come out for general consumption until 1972. The conversation between my uncle and me, wherein the description of the woman at the firepit was brought up, happened some two to three years prior to that. It should be noted the above footnote in similar format and form shows up in relation to the commentary and text found in CARLOS CASTANEDA: The Shaman and the Power of the Omen. FOOTNOTE [3] The mentioning of the "white haired old Indian" that handed me my walking stick invariably brings up the question: Did I see or recognize anything that may have indicated the "old Indian" was or was not Don Juan Matus? So too, sometimes the questioners are refering to a potential Don Juan incident when, as a young boy, my Uncle and I were on one of our excursions deep into a remote part of the
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southern New Mexico desert to visit a very strange man my uncle was somehow associated with. Those familiar with my discussions on that incident ask, if not Don Juan, could the "old Indian" in the bus station have been the very strange man I met in the desert instead? The answer to both questions are the same. In relation to that excursion, at the bottom of the page on Don Juan Matus I write, without further elaboration:

For all I know the very strange man that handed me the feather as reported in The Boy and the Giant Feather could have been Don Juan --- or for that matter, even better, the very strange man might have even been Don Juan's own unknown, albeit, unnamed master teacher said to have been a diablero. (see)

In monday morning quarterbacking my answer is: possibly. I like to think the "old Indian" in the bus station and the man that I met on theexcursion was one and the same person. However, when the meeting in the desert occurred I was a ten year old boy. The meeting at the bus station in Nogales was some thirteen years later. With my uncle the meeting in the desert had meaning. In the bus station when the old Indian handed me my walking stick it was, at the time, no more than one more meaningless happenstance in a long string of happenstances, and not seemingly worthy of filing away in my memory banks for posterity --- although waking up days later and hundreds of miles away with the whole thing carrying the perfume of a dream sequence may have entered into it. Unknowingly, the stick-handing episode apparently subconsciously continued to gnaw away and fester inside me, hence I think, contributing toward my need to return to the bus station when given the chance while in the army. As to the meeting in the desert, in Julian Osorio I write:

The Old Man In the Desert was not Indian like the Navajo or Hopi I had been used to interacting with in most of our travels in the desert southwest. Neither was he a brown Mexican nor Anglo white either. However, as a boy I still thought he was an Indian, primarily because he looked like one --- although he spoke Spanish instead of any Indian dialect I was familar with. As I look back now there is a chance he may have been Yaqui or possibly of strong Mesoamerican heritage. To be truthful my sophistication in such matters at the time just weren't refined enough to assimilate all the subtle nuances.

And that's the problem. As a mere ten year old boy my sophistication wasn't refined enough to assimilate all the subtle nuances. Later, in the bus station following my
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trip to Mexico, even though in hindsight it seems I was being told something --- and you as a reader might ask yourself how could I be so stupid or naive --- for some reason, even though I had an inkling, my latent ability to grasp or sort through all of it at a higher or more sophisitcated level, at the time, still just wasn't up to it. After all it was a full five years before the incident I describe in Dark Luminosity. So too, it was well before any sort of major experience surrounding the rise of the super normal perceptual states of Siddhis as well as fifteen years before the incident with the man of spells called an Obeah high in the mountains of Jamaica. Between the 1960 Nogales bus station observation we are talking about here and the experience with the Obeah, a HUGE learning curve occurred. Somewhere along the way it was as though a deep intuitive understanding or grasping of a giant Zen Koan unfolded, after which for the life of me I cannot figure out why or if there ever was a nonunderstanding.

When the trip finally concluded and my buddy and I pulled up in front of the house and I finished gathering all my stuff together from the panel truck after months and months on the road I discovered the walking stick I had become so fond of was missing. When I asked my buddy if he had seen it he told me he remembered a stick leaning next to me in the bus station when he picked me up but thought it must belong to somebody else because it had what looked like Indian or Native American stuff attached to it. When I asked what he meant by Indian or Native American stuff --- which I was not able to recall having anything like that attached to it --- my buddy said it had a small, double strand of leather string with maybe ten or so colored beads tied to the top in a slightly carved groove. Interestingly enough, if you went to the suggested link above titled The Boy and the Giant Feather you may recall that the very strange man my uncle went to visit in the middle of the desert gave me a feather that had a double strand leather string with ten colored beads tied to the quill, one bead for each of my years he said. Somehow the feather disappeared only to surface years later in the hands of my uncle and with me by then, an adult. When he gave me the feather the double strand leather string with ten colored beads was noticeably missing.(see)

In and around the time of the Taos meeting mentioned above in the text, my uncle and I had a series of several meetings. In one of the meetings my uncle and I had just prior to his death he told me that the old man I met in the desert those so many years ago had, at age 107, died, citing the night of October 31, 1978. During the year 1978 an unusual TWO new moon's in one month occurrence transpired and it just so happened to occur in October, with the second of the darkened new moons on, of all things, All Hallow's Eve, Halloween night, October 31st, the same night of the old man's death --- a major convergence of conditions and coincidences. To the majority of people such an occurrence most likely does not mean much. However, for the occult, voodoo and others of similar ilk, such a rare event as having
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the darkened second new moon of a two new moon month happen on, of all nights, All Hallow's Eve, is a convergence of major proportions that carries a deep significance. It means POWER in the hands to those who can so channel it,COSMIC POWER. Any event perpetrated during such a narrow band or limited time period carries a destiny with it that similar events at another time won't or can't. As to All Hallow's Eve, All Saints Day, otherwise known as All Hallows Day (hallowed means sanctified or holy), falls on November 1st. The evening prior to All Hallows Day, October 31st, was the time of intense activity, both human and supernatural. Originally people celebrated All Hallow's Eve as a time of the wandering dead, but over time the supernatural beings came to be either dominated by or thought of as evil. To propitiate those spirits (and their masked impersonators) people began setting out gifts of food and drink. Over time All Hallow's Eve became Hallow Evening, which eventually became Hallowe'en. See ZEN, THE BUDDHA, AND SHAMANISM. Scroll down to to the sub-section titled Once In a Blue Moon.

As to the "old man in the desert" dying at age 107 as told to me by my uncle, amazingly Don Juan's reported teacher, Julian Osorio, was said by Castaneda have died, coincidently, at age 107 as well. The following is from the previously cited paper on Osorio:

If Osorio was born in 1871 that would have made him around 77 years old at the time of my visit to the old man in the desert. Osorio reportedly was never cured of his tuberculosis and lived to the ripe old age of 107, 30 years beyond the 77 years of my meeting --- although how Castaneda arrived at the 107 figure is not clear as Don Juan reportedly left the world in 1973 and for all practical purposes Castaneda ended his apprenticeship with him well before that.

At the very least, having a "white haired old Indian" hand me my walking stick in the bus station DOES, if nothing else, put a white haired old Indian in the bus station at the exact same time as Castaneda. If it was Don Juan Matus or not or if Castaneda and the white haired old Indian met or not, I can't say --- you have to take it from there.

Interestlingly enough, it should be noted that the 1871 year of birth calculated for Osorio and the death of the old white haired Indian on October 31, 1978 as told to me by my uncle comes out to be the 107 as quoted by Castaneda for the death of Osorio. Castaneda writes that Don Juan Matus was born in 1891 and that he was
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twenty years old when he met Osorio. He also writes that Osorio was twice Don Juan's age when the two met, making Osorio 40 years old --- hence then, making Osorio having been born in 1871. Quite the coincidence of numbers from a variety of different sources if none of it is not so. FOOTNOTE: [5]

"Yet Castaneda never produced a single reliable witness to support any of his tale. Nor has any come forward in the last thirty years. Where is 'Nogales Bill,' who introduced Carlos to don Juan?"

It is quite clear throughout the writings of Castaneda that at the time of the meeting in the Nogales bus station that neither he nor Bill had any sort of a clue as to who the white haired old indian was or what power he may or may not had. The white haired old indian of course, according to Castaneda, turned out to be Don Juan Matus, the powerful Yaqui shaman sorcerer he studied under and the mainstay of all of his books. What most people do not realize or often overlook is that eight years transpired between the time of the bus station meeting and the publication of Castaneda's first book. I am not sure if Bill ever did figure out that the white haired old indian and Don Juan were the same person, and if he did, it was so many years after the fact that it just didn't matter to him one way or the other to him anyway. The reason I think such is the case is because in NONE of the major introduction scenes as described by Castaneda --- which are NOTactual introduction scenes because Bill NEVER introduces them --- does Castaneda cite Bill as actually knowing or repeating Don Juan's name. To wit, in synopsis, how Castaneda presents the introductions: IN TEACHINGS (1968): A Friend (Bill) greeted (Don Juan), then immediately left (Castaneda) alone not even bothering to introduce the two of them. IN REALITY (1971): Was sitting with Bill. Bill got up and went to greet the man and forgot to introduce them. IN JOURNEY (1972): A friend had just put them in contact. He left the room and they (Don Juan and Castaneda) introduced themselves to each other. IN INFINITY (1998): Already knew about the mysterious old man who was a retired shaman. A strange anxiety suddenly possessed (Castaneda) that made him jump out of his seat and approach the old man, immediately beginning a long tirade.

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It is, however, much, much more than Castaneda's colleague Bill just NOT knowing the old man's name. Even though he had seen the old man in the past and knew he was a companion or friend of the Cloud Shaman, Bill DID NOT know --- or even have the remotest inkling --- that the old man was a powerful shaman-sorcerer. Remember from above the following quote which pretty much clarifies Bill'sposition:

Bill said convincingly that he had encountered people like him before, people who gave the impression of knowing a great deal. In his judgment, he said, such people were not worth the trouble, because sooner or later one could obtain the same information from someone else who did not play hard to get. He said that he had neither patience nor time for old fogies, and that it was possible that the old man was only presenting himself as being knowledgeable about herbs, when in reality he knew as little as the next man.

For the complete introductions scenes in their entirety --- as written by Castaneda --click HERE.

There is one caveat and it is found in an interview with Castaneda in 1968 on KPFA radio wherein on the transcript Castaneda says:

"I met Don Juan in a rather fortuitous manner. I was doing, at the time in 1960, I was doing, I was collecting ethnographic data on the use of medicinal plants among the Arizona Indians. And a friend of mine who was my guide on that enterprise knew about Don Juan. He knew that Don Juan was a very learned man in the use of plants and he intended to introduce me to him, but he never got around to do that. One day when I was about to return to Los Angeles, we happened to see him at a bus station, and my friend went over to talk to him. Then he introduced me to the man and I began to tell him that my interests was plants, and that, especially about peyote, because somebody had told me that this old man was very learned in the use of peyote.

Which sounds as though his friend, which is presumed to be his anthropological and Road Trip bus station colleague Bill --- because in Castaneda's books, both in the past and those at the time yet to be published, it is --- and in this interview, unlike how he was written about other times, Bill knows the "old man" and knows he is not just some old fogie but someone of some consequence.

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In the interview Castaneda says Bill "knew about Don Juan" and that he "knows that Don Juan was a very learned man in the use of plants." As clear as that sounds it still doesn't mean that Bill knows the old man is Don Juan, only that he knew OF him and that he was a very learned man in the use of plants --- which is no secret. After all Bill was quite clear that he knew the "old man" was a companion or a teacher of the Cloud Shaman and that he had seen both of them together in the distance various times many years ago. It is Castaneda that eliminates the "old man" reference and interjects the name Don Juan into the interview. It is presented to the listener as though Don Juan's name was known, however it was really presented by Castaneda after the fact --- eight years after the fact. By then everybody with any interest knew the "old man" in the bus station was, according to Castaneda, Don Juan, so HE calls him Don Juan. If you notice in ALL four of the books cited above, Bill does not, in any instance, use Don Juan's name OR actually introduce Castaneda and the "old man" to each other. He either immediately left, forgot to introduce them, or, as in the last case, Bill wasn't even mentioned and Castaneda took it upon himself. Why in all the above scenarios did Bill NOT introduce the two of them together? Simply put, Bill did just not know the old man's name, period. Rather than be embarrassed he just slinked away. Again, for the complete set of introductions scenes in their entirety as written by Castaneda, click HERE. An introduction of a totally different type, albeit however brief, is my own connection to Carlos Castaneda in my youth. As to how that connection came about, that is, my meeting with Castaneda, please see: CARLOS CASTANEDA: Before Don Juan.

As to the quote below, which was extrapolated from a Castaneda forum some years back, that shows up at the top of this foonote and has been used by me in other places throughout my works:

"Yet Castaneda never produced a single reliable witness to support any of his tale. Nor has any come forward in the last thirty years. Where is 'Nogales Bill,' who introduced Carlos to don Juan?"

The "Castaneda never produced a single reliable witness to support any of his tale" I suppose could be applied to me in a round about way except for the Castaneda (himself) never produced part. The thing is, relative to what what I have presented in the totality of this paper, how many summer of 1960 Greyhound bus station events in Nogales could Castaneda have had? As for any reliable part, would suggest to those who may be so interested to visit: About 600 miles south of Guaymas my buddy and I came into the city of Tepic located about 130 miles northwest of Guadalajara. In Tepic we met a proto-hippie American girl around our same age while shopping for fruits and vegetables in an
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open air market. Making dinner together she stayed the night. She was traveling north by bus alone. We told her we were headed south with our only real goal being to squeeze in as many ancient ruins as possible. She said she had just come from Guadalajara and had heard that northeast of there, near a city called Zacatecas, were some fabulous ruins of an ancient city named Chicomostoc that nobody even knows who built it. Since we were halfway down Mexico and had not seen one ruin yet, my buddy and I decided to go there. The girl said if we didn't mind, if we going to the ruins, she would like to join us, then continue north from Zacatecas --- besides that she said, she could show us around Guadalajara as she had spent a week or two there. After a few days in Guadalajara we headed northeast on the road to Zacatecas. No sooner had we got out of the urban area and into the mountains when a beat up pick-up truck with high boards on the sides holding in a ton of junk and coming from the other direction went out of control. It basically crossed the road right in front of us, turned sidways, then smashed into the embankment ending with the hood up, horn blaring and steam coming out all over the place. Our truck ran up our side of the road into the dirt and, except for a series of rough bumps and nearly flipping nothing happened. However, when the dust settled and we got out we could see that three adults and a young boy who had been walking alongside the road had got caught up in the accident and the young boy, around seven or so, had been been hit by the pick-up fairly severely. We attended to the people hurt as best we could, assessed the damage and backed our truck down onto the road. It was quite clear the boy was hurt pretty bad and needed medical attention. Since we were the only ones left with a vehicle that was drivable we loaded everybody up who wanted to go, including the young boy and his parents, and headed back toward Guadalajara. As we got into the northern suburbs of Guadalajara called Zapopan a man from the pick-up traveling with us said he had relatives nearby and they could direct us to a doctor. When the lady of the house saw the young boy she insisted the boy stay and have a doctor come to him. Soon a crowd began to gather outside the house, I guess because of the three gringos, our truck with U.S. plates, and an injured boy. A doctor showed up and he and the parents of the boy got into an almost shouting match. Shortly thereafter, for whatever reason a priest arrived. Then a second one, a more of a bigshot one. He told us the boy and his parents were Indians called Huichol and they wanted to take the boy home so he could be dealt with by a traditional healer. The thing is, the priest said, the doctor did not think the boy would survive the trip north into the mountains. Enter the proto-hippie. She said why don't WE take one of the parents and go get the traditional healer. Everybody heard the suggestion and everybody thought it was a good idea, except maybe my buddy and me. Two days later we were back with the healer and his apprentice. By then the boy was doing fairly well on his own and in the end it all turned out OK. My buddy and I never made it to Chicomostoc and the proto-hippie left with the healer. His apprentice, instead of going with them, went with the second priest.
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The priest was Father Ernesto Loera Ochoa, a Franciscan priest from the Basilica of Zapopan. The apprentice healer, Ramn Medina Silva. There have been a few complaints regarding a certain ambiguousness or lack of specifics regarding some of the stated time-date references of the events so cited between Apostolides and my uncle. For example: "Sometime in or around 1978 (plus-or-minus a year or two)" and "at least by the time of their meeting in the late 1970s." Those so expressing such concerns have placed, it seems, within the context of those concerns, a slight whiff of suspicion that the lack of specific dates implies in some fashion that maybe what has been presented may not have transpired at all. When Apostolides and my uncle crossed paths I was living in Jamaica, having left during the winter of 1977 and apprenticed under a Jamaican man of spells called an Obeah, not returning until the spring of 1981. By the time I got back and my uncle and I resumed our discussions on a regular basis it had been a few years since he and Apostolides had participated in their talks. Even then, initially, none of it was on the forefront of OUR conversations --- and by the time it did come up my uncle just didn't have any specific dates at his command. That is to say, sometime around 1978 or late in the 1970s Apostolides looked him up to see if my uncle could add any insight into the potential super nova petrograph he discovered. My uncle knew it was sometime in the late 70s because I was gone. Other than that he never recorded any of it for posterity. The other problem people have is why didn't any of the information flow the other way. In other words, Apostolides didn't seem to share any outcome of any meeting with my uncle that anybody is aware of, and especially so anything regarding any contact between himself and William Lawrence Campbell and Campbell being "Bill" in Castaneda's writings. I am not able to speak for Apostolides. I talked with him quite a number of hours one evening with a group of desert folk at Bickel's camp before hitting the sack way past midnight --- but, that was over 40 years ago --- so I really can't say what made him tick one way or the other. To get a better handle on Apostolides and why he might do or not do anything I defer to the works of Bill Gann, who, according to what he has to say on his web pages, had developed a rather long term friendship with him. From Gann's own writings:

"Alex recalled on the rare occasion he would discuss his relationship with Castaneda, 'was to keep one foot firmly planted in reality. Carlito didn't listen, and often lost his way.'" Alex certainly never claimed any particular influence on Castaneda. Then, there was much about the wandering Greek I didn't know. I was, after all, a foolish young man in the days Alex lived at Bickel Camp. Perhaps he didn't feel I was worthy of the topic. "It seems Alex had simply experienced much success, knew a myriad of famous people, and had so many interesting life experiences, he didnt have time to tell the whole story. That, and there was much of his narrative he didn't want told. In fact, when I first wrote an early version of this bio, he reviewed it and said something like,
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"Yea, yea, that's good enough," by way of critique. Then he asked that some really good parts be removed. Years ago Alex was also upset with me for publishing the 1972 story about Walt Bickel. To me getting the first story about Walt Bickel in print in California State Universitys Daily Titan was a great triumph. Alex felt I had blown the cover of a place that we should keeping a secret."(source) FOOTNOTE: [4] In the paragraph this Footnote is referenced to the final sentence reads:

"It isn't likely anyone at anyplace or anytime would have recognized him, know him, or know of him beyond the small circle of hibituates he typically traveled in."

Although the contents of the above sentence could easily be taken to apply only to the 1960s time period of the bus station meeting, it actually embraces a small slice of a much larger picture of Castaneda and how and why anybody at anytime who didn't specifically know him would have a hard time recognizing him enough to step forward --- even years and years after he became famous. Author Keith Thompson, in an interview of Castaneda a full 34 years AFTER the bus station meeting for New Age Journal Magazine (March/April 1994), writes the following in a preface to his interview:

"Literary agents are paid to hype their clients, but when the agent for Carlos Castaneda claimed that he was offering me "the interview of a lifetime," it was hard to disagree. After all, Castaneda's nine best-selling books describing his extraordinary apprenticeship to Yaqui Indian sorcerer don Juan Matus had inspired countless members of my generation to explore mysticism, psychedelic drugs, and new levels of consciousness. Yet even as his reputation grew, the author had remained a recluse, shrouding himself in mystery and intrigue. Aside from a few interviews given seemingly at random over the years, Castaneda never ventured into the public spotlight. Few people even know what he looks like. For this interview, his agent told me, there could be no cameras and no tape recorders. The conversation would have to be recorded by a stenographer, lest copies of Castaneda's taped voice fall into the wrong hands."

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CARLOS CASTANEDA

Before Don Juan

the Wanderling

When I first met Carlos Castandea I was a newly employed teenager just a few short months out of high school. Castaneda, while admittedly higher ranking in the overall scheme of things and some ten years older than me, was not yet the cipher of an undergraduate student lost among the hundreds enrolled in the anthropology department at UCLA of his early years. Nor was he close to the later controversial figure he was destined to become. Matter of fact, as far as his academic career was concerned, he was really not much more than a vacuous-faced student enrollee at Los Angeles City College struggling along with everybody else to hammer out the 60 units of general education requirements needed for an AA degree. It was still about a year so before he would transfer to UCLA and many more after that before he would meet the nearly white-haired Yaqui Indian shaman sorcerer he called Don Juan Matus at the Greyhound bus station in Nogales, Arizona --- the powerful shaman sorcerer that eventually became the focus of Castaneda's dozen or so books and that made Castaneda rich and both of them famous. Before our meeting little did either of us know we were on a collision course. I had gone to work for a seemingly innocuous little aerospace firm with a huge reputation about six or seven miles north along the coast from the little southern California
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beach community where I lived. The company was located in what was then not much more than a small oil refinery owned industrial town called El Segundo right next to Los Angeles International Airport. I had been hired as a trainee technical illustrator for an even smaller offshoot of the company that helped design and build the high altitude breathing equipment for the then super-secret U-2 spy plane --which basically meant I got paid for my drawing ability.(see) After I had been there a respectable length of time and got to know a few people I began hanging out with a small, sort of loose-knit but quasi-exclusive group of people that fancied themselves artists much as I did of myself. Nearly every Friday after work we would meet in some small out of the way place, order some wine, beer or coffee and talk art, philosophy and politics late into the night just like artists and beat poets did, we thought, in the West Bank sidewalk cafes of Paris. A couple of miles from my job was the Mattel Toy Company. Some of the people in the group knew some people at Mattel who also fancied themselves as artists and some of them joined us as well. One of the people that used to show up at those get togethers was Carlos Castaneda, who just happened to be working at Mattel at the time. Now, most people, especially those who know little or nothing about Castaneda's pre-Don Juan background, find themselves at a total loss as to why Castaneda would even bother to show up at our small, unprestigious, under-theradar, and unheralded group of so-called artists. Over and over it comes up: Why would a person in their right mind, of such stature as Castaneda, entertain the possibility of participating in such a group of nobodies? The answer is quite simple. First, as mentioned in the opening paragraphs at the top of the page, at the time of the meetings Carlos Castaneda was NOT the Carlos Castaneda he came to be AFTER he met the mysterious and powerful Yaqui Indian shaman-sorcerer he came to call Don Juan Matus. Secondly and most importantly, in those pre-Don Juan days, Castaneda likened himself as an artist --- and truth be told, our group was openly receptive to artists that had not made it simply because none of us had. As for Castaneda being an artist, it is weaved throughout his early personal history and background. According to his own words, on Monday, July 24, 1961 in a conversation with Don Juan and published in Castaneda's third book Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Don Juan admonishes him for never assuming responsibility for his acts and Castaneda writes:

He (Don Juan) dared me to name an issue, an item in my life that had engaged all my thoughts. I said art. I had always wanted to be an artist and for years I had tried my hand at that. I still had the painful memory of my failure.

Castaneda was a Peruvian. Most people I knew at the time with a Hispanic background were of Mexican descent. For me, to be a person from Peru was kind of odd and the fact that he was piqued my interest. The most of what I knew of Peru

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circled around the hidden city of Machu Picchu that I had learned from a very good friend of mine who had been there.

Four of five years before those artist meetings, because of an impending divorce between my dad and Stepmother, he sent me and my younger brother to live with our grandmother on our mother's side in a small suburban beach town southwest of Los Angeles, California. The summer had just ended and I was just about to enter high school for the first time while my younger brother was starting the seventh grade. Like many kids in those days we had a number of what my grandmother used to call chores that we were expected to do around the house. One of those chores was cutting the front lawn. My dad, after visiting one weekend and watching me struggling to cut the grass with an extremely ancient and dull push-type hand mower, went to Sears and bought a power mower for me to use. The first thing my brother and I did after our dad left was build a small cart and haul the mower around the neighborhood cutting lawns for money. Around the corner and up the street was a house built on a lot that was on a small hill that was at least five feet above sidewalk level. Because the house had a perpetually unkempt lawn that always seemed in need of mowing I thought it was a perfect place to earn a few bucks. However, the other kids in the neighborhood told me a scary old mummified man that sat staring out the window all day long and hated kids lived there and they warned me if I was smart I would never get any closer to the place than the sidewalk.[1] One day in the need of some cold hard cash to go to the movies or indulge in some other equally important pastime, and, after having gone to almost every house on the block trying to drum up some lawn cutting business with no success, I forced myself to climb the stairs to the porch of the mummified man and knock. A lady barely looked out from behind the door and told me she was just the housekeeper and worked there only a couple of days a week. About cutting the lawn I would need to talk to the owner, but he couldn't come to the door, I would have to come in if I wanted to to talk to him. She took me to a room that was just to the right of the entry way that looked out over the street and sure enough, sitting in a chair looking out the window was the mummified man. As it turned out the mummified man wasn't mummified at all. Actually he was hooked up to some sort of breathing apparatus attached to an oxygen tank, plus, onand-off throughout the day he had IVs stuck into his arms and wires attached in various places for monitoring equipment to record his heart rate, blood pressure and other vitals. So said, for the most part, because he was so hooked up to machines and couldn't move he basically just sat there all day long and either read books and newspapers or looked out the window.[2]

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The man himself, although seemingly tall, was stocky for his height, slightly heavyset, raspy voice with a short, almost military style haircut. His skin was dry and wrinkly as though he had been badly burned in many places, and he had. He was a onetime merchant marine. During World War II the merchant ship he was serving on was queuing up for a convoy and positioned amongst the other ships in the rear corner on the starboard side that he called "coffin corner," said by experienced hands to be the most easy picking location for submarines in a convoy. Everybody on board was nervous, not because of the position, but because previously another crew member, an able-bodied seaman by the name of Olguin (possibly Holguin) had always been with them. Word had it that any time Olguin was part of the crew and the ship was in coffin corner, because of his karma or good luck or whatever they would not be attacked. The legend was alive because not one of the several voyages he had been on and traveling in coffin corner had his ship been hit or even come under attack. On this trip Olguin was either not in the convoy or assigned to another ship. Even before the convoy really got underway a wolfpack started picking at the edges and my friend's ship torpedoed. In order to save himself he had no choice but to jump overboard, landing in an area with oil burning along the surface of the water, the fire scorching his skin as he plunged through and returned for air. He spent months in recovery and rehabilitation. A few years after he was released he moved into the place he was in now. He said in all the years he had lived there I was the first kid in the neighborhood to actually come up on the porch and to the door, let alone come in. He wasn't too concerned about the grass one way or the other, but he could use, he said, a reliable errand boy a couple of days a week to go the post office, pick up and deliver packages, go to the drug store and library and do minor shopping for such things as vegetables and freshly ground coffee. Hence started what turned out to be a very interesting friendship between me, a ninthgrade freshman just into high school and the older, heavily scared, barely able to move ex-merchant marine.

Every wall in the room that he sat in day after day, except for the wall with the picture window, was completely covered with bookshelves, stacked shelf after shelf, row after row, from floor to celing, each shelf stuffed with book after book. Along the floor beneath the window were boxes filled with even more books and on the wall space next to the window was what I would call the only picture in the room, an old movie poster simply thumbtacked to the wall. On the wall space next to the window on the other side was what looked like a few framed certificates or dipolmas and a couple of plaques. He told me he had been all over the world. He had seen the pyramids in Egypt, the Olmec, Mayan and Aztec ruins in Mexico and Central America. Easter Island all by itself in the Pacific and Angkor Wat in jungles of Cambodia. He had been to Machu Picchu high in the Andes of Peru by climbing the Inca Trail and explored Stonehenge on the Salisbury Plain in England. Machu Picchu and Peru always seemed to be in the forefront of his thoughts, speaking fondly of both quite often. One reason is because he knew Hiram Bingham, the explorer that discovered Machu Picchu. He claimed they were more than just passing acquaintances, but actually friends. During WWII
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Bingham gave lectures on the south sea islands to members of the Navy. My merchant marine friend had traveled extensively throughout the South Pacific, including, as mentioned, Easter Island. Somehow the two met along the way and Bingham used him as a source for some of his lecture materials. My friend even had a signed first edition copy --- with a rather lengthy handwritten personal acknowledgement --- of Bingham's book, LOST CITY OF THE INCAS: The Story of Machu Picchu and Its Builders (1948), that Bingham sent him a few years into my friend's recuperation period. Bingham even wrote in the acknowledgement that he hoped the merchant marine would have "a quick and full recovery." Every day I came by we would talk about some place he had been to, Peru or otherwise. Our discussions on any one place could run over a period of weeks or sometimes just last the few hours I was there. Sometimes we would pick up where we left off and other times we would go off on some tangent discussing someplace else right in the middle of what we were talking about and not come back to the first topic for weeks. Each time we talked he would have me get down several books related to the place and we would look at pictures and go over the differences and the similarities of what different authors had written compared to what he had seen and experienced. He had lots and lots of books on Atlantis by Edgar Cayce, Ignatius Donnelly, and L. Sprague de Camp as well as a complete set of the Lost Continent of Mu books by James Churchwood. He told me when he was around my age he had become driven, actually obsessed with Atlantis and Mu. He began traveling the world to find or substantiate both places. But, the more and more ancient places he visited and more and more educated he became the more and more he became convinced neither place ever existed. In his quest, both pro and con, besides all the Atlantis and Mu books in his library, he had collected reams and reams of books, material, research and explanations that debunked nearly every single aspect of either continent or their civilizations that anybody could ever pose, except possibly one. Replicating almost down to the letter the classic Egyptian "tale" --- with strong Atlantean overtones --- transcribed on papyrus by Ameni-amenaa dating from the XII Dynasty, circa 1991-1805 BCE, The Shipwrecked Sailor, he was found weeks, possibly months after his ship had been torpedoed somewhere in the Atlantic strapped with heavy ropes to a piece of debris floating all alone in the middle of the ocean, and except for being unconscious and heavily scared from the burn marks, which had seemingly healed, he was in pretty good shape. Everybody said it was a miracle, that his burns must had healed by the salt water. How he had made it in the open ocean without food or water nobody knew. Most people speculated he had been picked up by a U-boat and ejected at a convenient time so he would be found, although no record has ever shown up to substantiate such an event, nor did he recall ever being on a submarine, German or otherwise.[3] The day he told me the story about being found he showed me a delicate gold necklace that had what looked like a small Chinese character dangling from it. He said one day in the hospital while being given a sponge bath he was looking in a hand mirror at his burn marks when he noticed he had the necklace around his neck.
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He never had a gold necklace in his life. When he asked the nurse where it came from she said as far as she knew he came in with it as it was found amongst the few personal effects he had with him. She said typically they would not put any jewelry on a patient but some of the staff thought that since he was so scared by the burns that he might like a little beauty in his life so someone put it around his neck. He told me he had no clue where it came from or how it came into his possession, but for sure he didn't have it on before he was torpedoed. He said everybody always admired it and it appeared to be very ancient. [4]

I told the story about the necklace in an abreviated sort of way to the artists one Friday, interjecting a strong emphasis on Machu Picchu because it was located in Peru and Castaneda was in the group that night. The mention of Machu Picchu perked up his ears it seemed, so I continued with the only other Peru "story" I was able expound on at any length. I had learned the story from a book given to me by a friend of my Mentor, the person I did study-practiced under. Although my mentor told me he had studied under a maharshi in India he never specifically gave me his name. His friend told me he had studied under the venerated Indian holy man the Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi. To fill me in on Sri Ramana she had given me several books on him, one of which had the following story:

A couple from Peru was visiting the ashrama of Sri Ramana Maharshi one day and he was enquiring about their day-to-day life, and their talk turned to Peru. The couple began picturing the landscape of their homeland and were describing the sea-coast and the beach of their own town. Just then Maharshi remarked: "Is not the beach of your town paved with marble slabs, and are not coconut palms planted in between? Are there not marble benches in rows facing the sea there and did you not often sit on the fifth of those with your wife?" The remarks of Sri Maharshi created astonishment in the couple. How could Sri Bhagavan, who had never been out of Tiruvannamalai since a boy, know so intimately such minute details about their own place? Sri Maharshi only smiled and said:

"It does not matter how I can tell. Enough if you know that abiding IN the SELF there is no Space-Time." (source)

NOTE: A second equally interesting incident, cast in in a similar vein, and involving the Maharshi but a little too long to go into here, can be found by going to: THE MEETING: An Untold Story of Sri Ramana.

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Castaneda was totally fascinated by the story of Sri Ramana and the Peruvian couple, especially the space-time part, and wanted to know both the name of the author and the name of the book the story came from. I told him I couldn't recall at the moment, but at the next get together I would bring the information. The next time I saw him I gave him a note with all the info on it he requested. He thanked me and except for a brief interlude a year or so later when I saw him from the distance across the seating area at the Nogales Greyhound Bus Station on the exact same day and time he alludes to of having met Don Juan Matus for the very first time, that was the last I ever saw him. The interesting part of it all is those artist get togethers happened over a period of time before Castaneda, to my knowledge, ever thought of Don Juan Matus. I say so because IF Castaneda was working on the development of the Don Juan character at any time before he purportedly met him at the bus station in Nogales he never said anything about it. I would think our artist discussions after work would have been the perfect forum to bring him up --- yet he didn't. Why? Castaneda just didn't seem to know about such things. If Don Juan Matus was a total made up work of fiction it seems to me, since the timing was perfect, some rudimentary form of Don Juan would have come up in our discussions --- and it was a perfect place to do so as nobody in the group leaned toward the literary side of things so there was no chance any idea Castaneda may have had or presented would have been appropriated or stolen. Even if Castaneda carried a staunch predilection toward holding his cards close to his vest during those early years of our discussions, you would think by now at least, some sort of rough drafts of primitive Don Juans' and his beliefs would have surfaced if he was indeed working on any pre-Don Juan ideas. Additionally, although Castaneda's wife Margaret Runyan confirms that her husband made frequent field trips to Mexico in the time he was supposedly apprenticed to Don Juan --- and while she has publicly dumped on him pretty hard in many areas, she has NEVER reported that Castaneda was working on the Don Juan idea or talking Don Juan philosophy before the Nogales meeting. To my knowledge nobody has come forward to state equivocally that Castaneda was expounding a proto Don Juan philosophy anytime before he supposedly met the Shaman. However, at those meetings, besides the necklace story and the Machu Picchu story, on a minimum of at least two occasions, I know I told a story about my uncle taking me when I was a young boy to a very special cave deep in the desert --- a story that ended up, after thirty years passed, so remarkably close if not verbatim, to one Castaneda told in one of his books. Where Castaneda's cave was I don't recall. My cave, if it was in Arizona, New Mexico, or Mexico itself I'm not sure primarily because like most of the excursions I went on with my uncle they were seldom to one place during one trip and time and travel was almost always convoluted. I do know we had met a strange old man who went with us part of the way and that we had gone to the cave for a special time. That special time was either the summer solstice or fall equinox. After traveling over some pretty rough non-road roads we got to the point we could go no further by truck so we simply left the old man and the vehicle behind and
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continued into the mountains on foot --- all so we could be at the cave to see the sunset. My uncle told me the cave was one of three caves, all carved out and manmade, positioned along the ridgeline in such a way so that when the sun went down on special days it would would set directly on the very tip of the tallest mountain miles across the valley. We ourselves were miles and miles from any road or habitat that I knew of and because it was too dark to travel we had to stay the night at the cave. In the middle of the night, seemingly out of nowhere, we were confronted by an emaciated man. My uncle and the man got into a heated argument and the next thing I knew the man was gone, like he had disappeard into thin air. I am certain Castaneda was in attendance for at least one, possibly both of the times I told the story. The only reason I bring it up is because in Castaneda's eighth book Power of Silence (1988) in the section entitled THE MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SPIRIT: The First Abstract Core he describes, at least up to the appearance of the emaciated man, an almost exact scenario --- carved out cave and all --- that transpired between himself and Don Juan. So, what am I saying, that Castaneda copied my story? Could be. Or it could be, unrelated to anything I said, that he himself was taken to one of the seasonal caves by Don Juan Matus or the old man or both. So too, although such an occurrence seems to be highly remote, he could have, after hearing the story and getting wrapped up in the various events as they unfolded, searched until he found one of the caves or someone who could take him there.[5]

In closing, it should be noted, unconnected with me or any of the above, Castaneda did meet up with my uncle sometime prior to that bus station meeting while traveling in the desert southwest on his infamous Road Trip with the former Pothunter turned anthropologist colleague Bill during the late spring, early summer of 1960. In Zen, The Buddha, and Shamanism I bring up the relationship between my Uncle and Carlos Castaneda as follows:

In later years, because of that association and my uncle's knowledge of Sacred Datura and peyote as well as other halluciogens, he was interviewed by Carlos Castaneda, apparently on a Road Trip in the process of gathering information for future use in his series of Don Juan books. In 1960 or so Castaneda was an anthropology student at UCLA collecting information and specimens of medicinal type plants used by the Indians in the desert southwest when the two crossed paths. My uncle had field searched thousands and thousands of plants, herbs, and mushrooms, even to having had several previously undiscovered species named after him.

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FOOTNOTE [1]

The house "around the corner and up the street on a lot that was on a small hill" where the so-called mummified man lived was just over the crest and downside toward the north of a hill that rose up a couple hundred feet high from the south with its base along Torrance Boulevard. It was that same hill, from a house on Lucia Street about two blocks away and where I lived as a little kid before my mother died, that I caught the first glimpse of the huge object that came to be known as the UFO Over Los Angeles as it barely crossed over the crest of that hill in a south southeasterly direction and right over my house.

THE SO-CALLED BATTLE OF L.A.--800 FOOT ZEPPELIN-SIZE UFO CAUGHT IN SEARCHLIGHT BEAMS OVER LOS ANGELES IN 1942

Even though the object basically came straight on and crossed directly over the top of us, being out of the range of the searchlights it's actual shape was hard to discern against the upper night sky. My dad, who had actually watched the Graf Zeppelin land in Los Angeles at Mines Field (now LAX) and even walked along side and under the giant airship, often said the object that passed over us that night was as big, if not bigger, than a Zeppelin. FOOTNOTE [2]

To my knowledge my merchant marine friend never left his house except for two times during all the time I knew him. The first time was around three months after I started working for him. During that period a continuous series of high-powered winter storms battered the coastline all along Redondo Beach for a good two weeks straight, with giant two-story high waves tearing out a good portion of the beach and destroying houses all along the Strand. The damage received a good amount of national coverage and almost nonstop local coverage. My merchant marine friend, who could barely get between rooms without collapsing, decided he wanted to see
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the waves and destruction himself in real life. He got a couple of merchant marine buddies along with a couple of ex-navy guys he knew, one of whom was Guy Hague, who became famous in his own right one day, to carry him down to the street along with all of his breathing stuff, put him in the back of a panel truck, and take him down to the Strand. Several women observing the waves recognized one of the sailors and came over to talk and fuss over the merchant marine who had been carried up on a stretcher. Interestingly enough, and much to the surprise of the men and the merchant marine, a couple of the women recognized me. None of it would had meant one thing one way or the other except that the women worked for Fifie Malouf. Five years before I had lived with a foster couple and, not liking the arrangements for one reason or the other, ran away from home. Without anybody knowing where I was or having anybody's consent I ended up staying with a World War II ex-Marine taxi driver that had fought his way up through all the islands in all the major battles in the Pacific from Guadacanal northward. The taxi driver and I would have breakfast several days a week at Malouf's Happy Hour Cafe and sometimes I would hang out in the cafe in the afternoons or evenings while the ex-marine "visited a friend" in one of the apartments attached to the cafe. As a young boy basically unattended in the cafe it wasn't long before some of the women --- who worked for Fifie and knew what was going on --- befriended me. It was a couple of those same women who recognized me that day I was with my merchant marine friend. The second time my merchant marine friend ever left his house was about six months before he died. I started to work for him just as I began the 9th grade. Two years later, during the summer between my junior and senior year, apparently because of all the trauma and stress he had endured over the years from the severe burns, his body just gave out and he died. Even though he had severe burns and scaring from the torpedo attack and was housebound to boot with a tough time talking, he still had all kinds of people that used to stop by and see him and get into big long discussions on all sorts of topics. But, for all the knowledge and topics he could talk about what he was really known for was Atlantis and Mu --- both of which he not only studied indepth and had book after book on, but he also had spent a good part of his life out in the field physically searching for clues to their existence. In the end, as a one time true believer, he became convinced neither existed and would argue vehemently with a huge arsenal of information and facts at his fingertips against either of the lost continents. In those days both the merchant marine and I lived in homes on the 200 block south in Redondo Beach. Just a few short blocks away, with an address in the 500 north Gertruda section lived a man by the name of Truman Bethurum. Bethurum would come by the merchant marine's house on occasion and the two of them would get into heated discussions. Several times he was there I was there. The last time I remember seeing him at the merchant marine's house was in February 1954. Bethurum told him that in a couple of days, on Friday evening February 19th, at the Neptunian Womens Club clubhouse in Manhattan Beach (a few miles north of Redondo) he was going to give an hour-long talk begining at 8 p.m. and hoped he
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could be there. With much struggle and pain, with the help of several of his merchant marine friends, for whatever reason, he made it and I tagged along. Unknown to me at the time, all the while Bethurum had been coming by to visit my merchant marine friend he was rising up the ranks just to the cusp of being famous -- famous for what was was being called a "contactee." I was told a contactee was a person who had been contacted by aliens from another world. At his talk that night, in so many words, Bethurum said his experience began after his shift working as a maintenance mechanic for the Wells Cargo Construction Company, an asphalt mixing plant in Nevada. Tired, he took a little time to take a snooze at a nearby place called Morman Mesa where he had been hunting for ancient seashells. In the process he encountered a UFO and its occupants including the ships captain, a female named Aura Rhanes. According to what Rhanes told him she came from a planet called Clarion, which is not known to earth-based astronomers because its orbital path kept it permanently hidden from the earth behind the moon. Bethurum claimed his first contact took place on July 7, 1952 (later corrected to Saturday or Sunday of July 26 or 27) and since then to have had several similar encounters and at the time of his presentation continued to look forward to the time when he could travel to Rhanes' home planet Clarion. I sent a letter to my uncle outlining Bethurum's story. He wrote back saying to take the guy for what he is worth, but he sounded like a nut case. My uncle said he had three personal experiences with flying objects of an unknown origin, the San Antonio crash (1945), the Roswell crash (1947) and the Kingman UFO (1953), and not once, under any circumstances involving the objects, had he run into any sort of life forms, dead or alive. My uncle's advice, possibly tinged with a tiny bit of jealousy, asked what I thought my dad would think if he found out I was listening to Bethurum. After all, he said, my dad had told him (my uncle) when he asked me join him in Kingman that he "was filling my mind with all kinds of 'weird and useless shit' and to and keep his 'cock-and-bull stories' to himself." The interesting part of it all 50 years or so later meeting Bethurum allowed me, or at least opened the doors for me to so, meet and talk with another alleged contactee named Judith Anne Woolcott, sometimes Judy Woolcott or Judi Woolcott, that played a very instrumental part in the aforementioned incident covered most thoroughly at the following site: Kingman UFO 1953. If I would have taken my uncle's advice and curtailed my youthful naivete' it is quite possible the meeting and the information regarding Kingman I obtained may not have transpired. Bethurum died in 1969 after reaching his pinnacle some years before. When his narrative about Clarion being in an orbit kept out of sight by the moon was proven to be scientifically infeasible he said he was mistaken and that the planet was really in the exact orbital path of the earth only directly opposite of the earth on the other side of the sun. When that was discredited he moved the planet to another solar system.

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Some people have questioned how I can be so sure so many years after the fact that February 19th was the specific date for Bethurums talk at the Neptunian Club. If you remember from the above, with the passing of my mother I was sent to live with a foster couple that owned a flower shop and of whom, almost immediately, I ran away from and ended up staying with an ex-Marine who had fought his way through all of the major Pacific battles. He was a tough, rough sort of guy and could back it up if necessary. One day I found him sitting bent over with his head in his hands looking all the same as though he was crying. After composing himself and shaking it off as though nothing had happened he told me that it was his birthday and that he and his very best buddy in the military shared the exact same birthdate. They went everywhere together and did everything together. The two of them had fought their way up through all the islands side by side from Guadalcanal northward. He said barely a year and a half ago, on February 19, 1945, the two of them had just landed on Iwo Jima and no sooner had he come ashore than his best buddy was blown to bits right in front of his eyes and what was left of him wouldn't even fill a dog food can. FOOTNOTE [3]

When my Merchant Marine Friend told me the story about being torpedoed for some reason I just naturally pictured the incident transpiring in the North Atlantic --and truth be told, he seemed to allow me to believe it, although he never specifically stated so one way or the other in the many times he told me the story. However, I did overhear a conversation between himself and a man that identified himself as a researcher one day. The merchant marine told the researcher his ship had been torpedoed well off the coast of Florida, and after a lengthy back and forth questioning admitted to the researcher it was somewhere in the Bermuda Triangle. I think what actually happened was the spot where his ship was torpedoed and where he was eventually found floating in the open ocean was two different locations. Sank off Florida in or near the Bermuda Triangle, found in the North Atlantic. The thing is, the merchant marine HATED the Bermuda Triangle and any mention of it, especially in relation to any of the events that surrounded him. In an extremely interesting twist to the whole being torpedoed off the coast of Florida story is that years later my mentor sent me to study-practice under a mysterious, unhearlded and nearly unknown American Zen master by the name of Alfred Pulyan. As it turned out, Pulyan's most ardent supporter and follower, a man by the name of Richard Rose, had a brother that was a merchant marine who was killed apparently during the same U-boat attack that burned my merchant marine friend so badly that led ultimately to his demise. Regarding the attack, in the Alfred Pulyan link above I write:

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"A year or so passed and one day out of the blue my mentor brought up what he was able to ascertain from the facts he found. He told me as far as he could tell my merchant marine friend and the brother of the man he met had been attacked at the same time, albeit under slightly different circumstances. Although it wasn't likely they were shipmates, apparently the ships they were on got hit during the same U-boat attack. My mentor told me my merchant marine friend was part of a top secret convoy. The ship the man's brother was on was actually unescorted, and apparently, having spotted the convoy sometime after leaving Baltimore, under the cover of darkness, began tagging along in the shadow of it's wake for protection."

When I was first informed by my mentor that the convoy my merchant marine friend was on was a top secret mission it meant nothing. It was only when I started putting together bits and pieces to tell the story of how the merchant marine being my friend forged a connection between Carlos Castaneda and myself that any of it began to take on any sort of significance. If you notice at the top of the page there is a graphic that appears to be a map. That map is a drawing that indicates where many members of the ancient world thought the continent of Atlantis was located. If you remember from the above, in his youth the merchant marine had an obsession with Atlantis and the lost continent of Mu. There is no direct connection between Atlantis and Carlos Castaneda that I am aware of except for my merchant marine friend's interest in same and his knowledge of Peru and how I used Peru to open and establish a dialog with Castaneda. As I remember now --- stretching back into the dim, foggy reaches of my onetime teenage mind --- I recall my friend telling me about the Azores, a group of islands in the mid-Atlantic well off the coast of Portugal and Africa and how they related to the torpedo attack and Atlantis. Over a period of days during my regular daily visits my merchant marine friend had me get down a bunch of books and maps, spreading the maps all over the desk and all excited, explaining to me the early importance of the Azores in the myth of Atlantis. In several of the books he pointed out how Ignatius Donnelly, author of Atlantis: The Antediluvian World (1882), had first proposed that the Azores were the remnant remains of an Atlantean island continent --- and he told me how he always wanted to go to the islands because of it. He thought the convoy he was on was going to end up there. In those early months of the war a highly secret plan was being put into place for an invasion of North Africa. How that invasion was going to work, during the time of the convoy, had not been finalized. One school of thought felt that staging an invasion from the Azores and Canary Islands would be a good idea. The other school of thought felt a direct invasion would be the best as taking over both islands first then building up men and materials would be a dead giveaway of a potential North African invasion. The convoy he was on was doing top secret pre-staging staging of equipment, material, and ships in Puerto Rico for a quick jump either to the Azores and Canaries or directly to North Africa. His ship was sunk before it ever reached Puerto Rico.
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AMERICAN STEAM TANKER S.S. HALSEY. TORPEDOED OFF FLORIDA MAY 6, 1942 BY GERMAN SUB. MY FRIEND WAS ONBOARD WHEN HIT. FOOTNOTE [4]

Several years after I saw the necklace for the very first time found me in a reddarkened strobe light lit bar sitting around with a handful of para-military types and close Army buddies in the Cholon district of Saigon gulping down a large amount of a seemingly never ending supply of of alcoholic beverages. From out of the smoky milieu of mostly horny and inebriated GIs, unsolicited, a tea girl attempted to sit on my lap and tried to put something around my neck. Pushing back I could see she held what appeared to be a gold necklace stretched between her hands. Hanging midway along the necklace was a small Chinese character. Basically grabbing the necklace from her hands I asked where it came from and how she got it. She turned facing a general group of barely discernible figures sitting and drinking toward the back of the barroom in the shadows along the darkened wall, telling me that one of the men, a burnt man, had paid her to put it on me. When I asked what she meant by aburnt man, using her hands in a swirling motion in front of her face combined with a snearing facial expression to indicate scars while gasping for air as if the man had a tough time breathing, said in broken english, "burnt man, burnt man." In just the few seconds it took me to work my way through the crowd to the back wall pulling the tea girl with me the burnt man, if there ever was a burnt man, was gone. Nor could anybody at any of the tables remember seeing or talking to a heavily scared man, burnt or otherwise, sitting at any of the tables --- although some of the GIs were fully able to recall the girl. The necklace, which I still have and continue to wear to this day, from what I could remember, looked exactly like the one my merchant marine friend showed me and said to be mysteriously wearing out of nowhere the day he was found floating in the sea after his ship was torpedoed. The only problem is, by the time the incident in the Saigon bar occurred my friend had already been dead some ten years, having passed away during the summer between my sophmore and junior years in high school. At his memorial service I was told by family members, following a death bed request on his part, that in an effort to rejoin his fellow seamen he wanted to be cremated and his ashes tossed at sea near where his ship was torpedoed and, along with the
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ashes, the necklace returned to the sea as well. As far as I know those wishes had been complied with.(see)

ALTHOUGH NOT THE EXACT SAME BOOK HE GAVE ME, A SIMILAR BOOK, WHICH IS NOW LONG LOST, IS THE ONE BOOK THE MERCHANT MARINE EVER GAVE ME.-[5]

THE POSTER TACKED ON- THE MAN'S WALL FOOTNOTE [5]:

Many people have asked me about the cave. My uncle told me it was man-made and very ancient. It was quite clear it was located and made where it was because of its exact alignment with the setting sun and the major mountain peak across the valley. When asked about the timing for me being there I am at a loss for words. I was never informed one way or the other by my uncle or the strange old man we were traveling with that it was somehow coordinated with a given celestial event or any other reason. However, as I look back now, I am convinced being there must have
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been because of the solstice or the equinox --- although in either case, the importance of that being so was never made clear. In that I was off from school at the time it must have been summer or possibly fall, but I really can't say as I do not remember. I do know that I had already been with my uncle at the Sun Dagger site and our timing there was designed to coincide with an extremely "special time," that special time being an occurrence of a very rare astronomical phenomenon of the moon being full at the EXACT same time as the summer solstice. Initially the Sun Dagger event did not seem to involve me, only my uncle and the spiritual elder we were traveling with. But the results were quite different before we left. The event in the cave ended with a similar involvement. Who originally built the cave, how ancient it really was, and why it was so important to go through all the trouble to align it with the equinox or solstice is also a mystery to me. Years later I asked my uncle where the cave was and how to find it. He told me it was a very sacred place, but when the time came it would be revealed to me. He also told me including the cave we had been to there were two other mostly hand-carved caves spread out along the ridge for a total of three, each one aligned with one of the seasons and the mountain peak across the valley --- one for the two equinoxes, one each for each of the solstices. Even though my uncle had told me that when the time came it would be revealed to me, to this point in time, and even though many upon many years have elasped, such has not been the case. I can tell you that as I was leaving the cave very early the next morning and looked back I could see the ridgeline was slightly crescent shaped curving fairly sharply toward the west and rather slowly curving back toward the west at the other end --- almost as though the center of the crescent was directly in the middle facing toward the mountian peak across the valley. Hiking back to the truck, after I asked, my uncle told me as you sat in the cave facing toward the equinox sunset, the summer solstice cave was to the left of the equinox cave along the ridgeline, which was in the middle of the three, while the winter solstice cave was to the right.

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Although, as presented in The Last American Darshan, I had been to and seen, as a very young boy, Arunachala, the holy mountain of the venerated Indian sage the Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi, I did not remember it primarily because of mitigating circumstances. However, the first time I saw a picture of Arunachala depicting it in a distance view, as a grown-up, thinking back to my experience at the cave, even though the mountain peak was way across the valley from the cave, the shape of the peak looked exactly like Arunachala. The cave story is elaborated on much more fully and in-depth in Julian Osorio, Don Juan's teacher. HIGH BARBAREE

FOOTNOTE [5]

Out of the hundreds and hundreds of books my friend owned and had neatly stashed away all over the place in boxes and on shelves there was only ONE that he ever gave to me to keep. That one book was a hardback copy of The High Barbaree by Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall, the same authors who wrote Mutiny on the Bounty. He handed it to me one day out of the blue without comment, basically telling me to read it and that it was mine. In 1947 a movie version of the book had been made that I had neither seen nor heard of, but, in later years have since seen many times. Set in World War II and following the plot of the novel, the movie starred Van Johnson and June Allyson as childhood friends who get separated when June's family moves away. The story begins in the present (that is, the present then, circa 1943-44) with June and Van now back together again as grown adults. June soon discovers that Van has not followed his dream of becoming a doctor and tries to convince him that he needs to be true to himself or else he will never be happy. Before June succeeds in her

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mission, although the two find themselves in love, neither can act on it because once again they become separated --- only this time by the ravages of war. Van, who has now become a Navy pilot, while on patrol in the South Pacific in his PBY 5-A floatplane, is shot down. He and his co-pilot find themselves stranded and drifting without communication and become listed missing in action and presumed dead. Days go by. To pass the time, through a series of flashbacks, Van begins telling stories of his childhood, taking the viewer through his life as a young boy and the close friendship he had with June up until the time she moved away. He talks about his Uncle and various tall tales he used to tell. His uncle, a seafaring man who is now a Navy Captain, told him about a mysterious enchanted and uncharted island that rose up out of the sea that he saw once in his youth, an island called High Barbaree. In his stories he even related to Van the latitude and longitude of the island. The co-pilot charts their position and discovers their location is right on top of the coordinates Van's uncle had given him for the legendary island many, many years ago when Van was just a boy. Before the disabled floatplane is able to drift to the actual location --- 1 Degree North, 160 Degrees East --- the co-pilot dies and Van is left all alone and on the verge of dying himself, adrift at sea having long since run out of food and water. He is eventually located alive and returns to June, but not until after he apparently finds refuge on High Barbaree. Of course when he is finally found --- on his downed PBY --- even though he is no longer dying and in good health, as well as seemingly of sound mind, there is no island or sign of High Barbaree.

How all this relates to Carlos Castaneda is because of the unusual nature of the story and the outcome because of it. That is, my mechant marine friend being found strapped to a piece of debris in the middle of the ocean still alive weeks, possibly months, after his ship was torpedoed --- and then him giving me the book High Barbaree that aludes to an island that rises up out of the ocean and saves a Navy pilot after weeks of being lost at sea. One day many years later I told the story to my uncle. Accompanying us at the table that day, and not at all unusual, was a friend of my uncle, a man known to be a well regarded tribal spritual elder. The elder listened intently to my story and, although not interested in the specifics because much of it was foreign to his culture, the overall theme of the story he liked. However, a few days later he showed up with a truly elderly man. The spiritual elder had been talking to a group of men about my story when a man stepped forward saying he had been a "Code Talker" in the south Pacific during World War II and knew about PBYs. This inturn put the truly elderly man in the group into some sort of trance. The truly elderly man told the Code Talker for ME to beware of PBYs. Because of the unusual nature of the warning, PBYs and all, the elder brought us together. The truly elderly man was somehow privy to a story that it had been said that as a young boy I had been touched by the White Painted Lady (see). Because of such, he felt a connection that otherwise might not have been there. Basically, through translators, because the truly elderly man did not have a full command of the english language, he wanted to know if I had access to a PBY. I told him not only
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had I never been on one or near one, to my knowledge I did not think I had ever even seen one. The old man slumped back almost as though he had fainted. Within minutes he returned to consciousness. He said that if not me someone from my past, possibly a woman, and if not her someone close to her would be impacted adversely in the use of such a craft. For me to stay away from such aircraft and ensure that any of my friends that might fit the bill stay away from them as well. At the time I knew nobody that in anyway would be involved with a PBY, especially so since they were for the most part World War II aircraft on the brink of obsolescence. Somewhere in my writings I mention that I met a woman from my past that I had not seen in ten years. The following relates to that incident:

"Amongst the crowd was a woman that recognized me, a former Rose Marie Reid swim suit model that I knew as Sullivan, but since married to the son of a renowned ocean explorer. They had a boat in the harbor and since we had not seen each other for ten years or so, after everybody was sure the girl was OK, she asked me to join her for drinks on her yacht, get into some dry clothes and get caught up. As I was leaving later in afternoon Sullivan asked if I would be willing to go to a party she was throwing in a couple of weeks. As I slowly strolled away down the dock I halfheartedly turned back and nodded in agreement that I would attend."

Now, I do not recall if the above incident between the former model and myself occured before or after the warning by the elderly man, but please note that I say the woman in question was married to the "son of a renowned ocean explorer." She and I never had an opportunity to talk or cross paths again after the aforementioned party. However, some years later --- and with me being in absolutely no position to know of such things --- they, in the mid-1970s, bought a PBY. Four years after the purchase her husband was killed piloting the plane during a water landing.

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(please click image)

Photograph: U.S. Navy Historical Archives In a footnote to Doing Hard Time In A Zen Monastery, refering to the small gold medalion, the following is found:

"(I)n 1977 I was in Hong Kong to seek audience with the famous translator Upasaka Lu K'uan Yu."

I go on to say the purpose of that meeting was to get a better handle on what the Zen master wrote. The Zen master in question was the master at the monastery. However, there was an equally strong if not even more so overriding reason I was in Hong Kong to meet with Lu K'uan Yu in 1977, and it revolves around handwritten Chinese characters given to me by the Zen man far away and high in the mountains above the monastery. Even though we were unable to communicate verbally because of not knowing each other's languages, there was a great nonverbal understanding between the two of us. When he showed me that he too had a small gold medalion just like the one I wore around my neck, through hand gestures, pantomime, and line drawings in the dirt I tried to get him to show me how it was he came into possession of the medalion. He drew a couple of cuneiform characters in the dirt and I copied them as best I could. He inturn, upon seeing how I copied them, nodded in agreement. However, nobody I showed them to could translate them --- hence my trip to Hong Kong. Even Lu K'uan Yu was baffled, alluding to the fact I may have copied them wrong. Eventually he was convinced the characters were meant to mean Gyanganj, a home for immortals said to be hidden in a valley in the remote Himalayas. For those who may be so interested, in the west Gyanganj is known as Shangri-la or Shambhala. CARLOS CASTANEDA:

The Shaman and the Power of the Omen


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"Those forces guided you to me; they took you to that bus depot, remember? Some clown brought you to me. A PERFECT OMEN, a clown pointing you out." Don Juan Matus to Carlos Castaneda in Journey to Ixtlan (1972)

Carlos Castaneda was a controversial author of a series of books based on a Yaqui Indian spiritual elder sometimes said to be from Sonora, Mexico and other times Yuma, Arizona, that he calls Don Juan Matus. According to Castaneda, Don Juan was a shaman-sorcerer who studied under a Diablero, a person considered to have extraordinary, and usually evil, powers. In turn Castaneda apprenticed under Don Juan over a period of several years starting in June, 1961, through to at least September, 1965, and possibly beyond. Before Castaneda started his apprenticeship he was an undergraduate student enrolled in the anthropology department at UCLA. In that capacity, after a series of events, Castaneda found himself in the desert southwest on a quest to research medicinal plants without the grace of his professors. Because of that lack of support Castaneda was just about ready to give up and head back to Los Angeles when a colleague suggested they go on a Road Triptogether. It is my contention that just before he went on that Road Trip --- during the spring into the early part of the summer of 1960 with a colleague he calls Bill --- Castaneda found himself in a deep state of despondency. The depth and heaviness of that despondency, combined with one other factor, convinced Castaneda that if he was ever going to climb out of the academic quagmire he found himself in as well as find the answers to the questions he was seeking, he would have to follow through on the Road Trip. With an unknown outcome reeking with destiny, the trip, except possibly for Castaneda's non-understanding but unwavering sense of the Power of the Omen, started out relatively uneventful. However, as a large portion of the literate world knows now, the trip ended, according to how Castaneda presents it, in the direct meeting between himself and Don Juan Matus, the shaman-sorcerer he eventually apprenticed under. The one other factor congruently placed into the mix was his colleague's last name. Although seemingly an extremely minor incident in the overall stream of events to most outside observers, Castaneda, upon hearing it for the first time was practically bowled over by it. The circumstances surrounding that initial meeting sent shivers down his spine striking him as being nothing less than a potential destinyladen OMEN(I get into the specifics of that first time in the very important Footnote [1] further down, the strength of which Don Juan would eventually call those forces). However, at the time, as no more than a mere neophyte Castaneda was subconsciously unable to stop himself, the powerful flow of events pushing him over the top into making his final decision to go on the Road Trip.

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In his eleventh book, The Active Side of Infinity (1998), Castaneda lays out in his own words how his colleague tried to convince him to go on the Road Trip. Castaneda writes:

I felt so despondent that I turned him down. "I'm very sorry, Bill," I said. "The trip won't do for me. I see no point in pursuing this idea of fieldwork any longer." "Don't give up without a fight," Bill said in a tone of paternal concern. "Give all you have to the fight, and if it licks you, then it's okay to give up, but not before. Come with me and see how you like the Southwest."

In CARLOS CASTANEDA: The Road Trip, taking a cue from the above and striking a cord for the despondency side of Castaneda's plight --- all the while playing down the potential strength of the omen aspect for a stronger and more in depth emphasis here, the following is presented:

Castaneda may have been so despondent after hearing the advice from the seasoned anthropologists --- and Castaneda makes reference to just such a mental state in his writings related to the aftermath of the seasoned anthropologists --- that he just got hooked up with some desert-rat cowboy that lived in his truck loaded with goodies, that usually drove alone and off they went.

To wit, to back up the above, the following, culled mostly from Castaneda's eleventh book Active Side of Infinity, coupled with some rather long discussions with my Uncle, who had met Castaneda during the summer of 1960, underlines more thoroughly both Castaneda's reference and mine to his despondency after hearing the advice from the seasoned anthropologists:

In early 1960, as an undergraduate student attending UCLA and well before he had any experience with or gained knowledge of Sacred Daturaexcept perhaps some small inferences of the plant from the venerated Cahuilla Shaman, Salvador Lopez, Castaneda approached a tenured professor of anthropology with the idea of writing a paper called "Ethnobotanical Data" and publish it in a journal that dealt exclusively with anthropological issues of the desert southwest. Castaneda was going to collect medicinal plants from all over the desert and have them properly identified by the

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UCLA Botanical Garden, then describe why and how the Indians of the southwest used them. The professor told Castaneda he thought that fieldwork was a travesty, saying he should pay more attention to his formal studies instead, perhaps thinking about studying linguistics or comparative religions, for example. Castaneda, somewhat dismayed and becoming even more downhearted about the whole thing, took his proposition to a second professor --- and the second professor ended up being even less helpful than the first, actually laughing at Castaneda openly. He told him his paper was a Mickey Mouse idea and that nothing in it was even remotely close to being anthropology. As a last resort, Castaneda, not wanting to give up on his idea, primarily because he wanted to be in the field and do original research instead of just library research, went to Arizona where he heard there were some reputable and high ranking anthropologists who were actually doing fieldwork in his same general area of interest. There, Castaneda met with a number of extremely seasoned anthropologists, one of whom, according to discussions with my uncle was thought to be Edward H. Spicer, a professor who had written a great deal about the Yaqui Indians of Arizona as well as those of Sonora, Mexico. The professor Castaneda met with didn't laugh openly or run him down to his face, but he didn't give him any kind of encouragement or advice either. A younger colleague of the professor was, however, more outspoken. He told Castaneda that he would be better off going back to the library at UCLA and simply sitting around researching what he needed from their huge catalog of herbalists' books. As a so-called respected authority in his field it was his opinion that everything anybody would ever want to know about medicinal plants from the desert southwest had already been delt with, both in being classified, cataloged and published to-no-end. Most likely he said, they could be found sitting around totally unused and collecting nothing but dust on the shelves at UCLA. He also told Castaneda that the SOURCES for most Native American curers of the day were those EXACT SAME publications rather than from any traditional knowledge. He finished by telling Castaneda, that in his experience, if any traditional curing practices did remain among the Indians of the southwest, they were not about to divulge any of them to a stranger.

OMENS AND DESPONDENCY In a 1968 radio interview with Castaneda titled "Don Juan: The Sorcerer," Castaneda, speaking of the shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus and his insights into the power and influence of omens, says:

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He (Don Juan) guides his acts by indications, by omens, if he sees something that is extraordinary, some event that he cannot incorporate into his, possibly his categorization scheme, if it doesn't fit in it, he calls it aportentous event or an extraordinary event and he considers that to be an omen.

At the time of the above 1968 radio interview Castaneda was heading toward the crest of power, fame, and fortune amongst a fairly wide general audience, and reluctantly so to a small core of smoldering beneath the collar academic peers. It was a lot different at the start of his Road Trip in the early summer of 1960. He was nowhere close to peer level in the minds of the "experienced social scientists" he came in contact with --- those in the field OR at the university. He was most likely thought of as nothing much more than a lowly undergraduate student --- the bottom-feeders of academia --- inturn undercutting his credibility in any and all of his ideas. All of which, taken together, unnecessarily contributed to the depth of Castaneda's gut-wrenching despondency. Inside he was truly suffering. More and more he felt like he and the ideas he held were worthless. In the end it seemed as though there was nothing left to do except flat-out quit or take the advice of the seasoned anthropologists and leave Arizona for Los Angeles and a life of library research. However, at the very last minute, a colleague Castaneda had met in the field stepped forward and out of the blue offered what he thought was a valid suggestion --- a Road Trip. The colleague was NOT even close to being one of those high ranking anthropologists or experienced social scientists. Although highly respected in the field, he was often categorized behind his back as not much more than a mere rock hound or pothunter by most of those same scientists --- but who, because of having met him years later through an association with my uncle, I have bypassed the derogatory pothunter label, referring to him instead as:

"...a not nearly so high ranking working stiff and seat-of-the-pants ground-pounder, versed in four-field anthropology (Ethnology, Archaeology, Linguistic and Biological)."

The so identified ground-pounder and onetime Pothunter turned reputable archeologist, told Castaneda he intended to go on a Road Trip and drive throughout Arizona and New Mexico revisiting "all the places where he had done work in the past, renewing in this fashion his relationships with the people (Native American or otherwise) who had been his anthropological informants" and asked Castaneda if he wanted to join him. The rest is history. Castaneda DID join in with the colleague on the Road Trip. For us the readers, though, regardless of the importance of the role the colleague played in the overall scheme of things or how Castaneda may have or may not have arrived
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at his decision to go, throughout all of his books the colleague remained nothing but anonymous to the core. At the most he was called only Bill at one end of the spectrum to never being identified with a last name at the other. However, there is a slight perfume within Castaneda lore that his colleague Bill did have a last name:Campbell --- with his full name being William Lawrence Campbell.

Interestingly enough there was another man Castaneda was most certainly aware of with the last name Campbell --- the noted author of classic mythology and the relationship of that mythology to Native American legends, by the name of Joseph Campbell (1904-1987), who wrote the standard The Hero With A Thousand Faces (1949), an absolute must-read for anybody such as Castaneda who delved into similar or like areas. So seeped in mythology was Joseph Campbell, George Lucas sought out all of his works --- along with Castaneda's it must be said --- for his Star Wars series. Lucas even invited Campbell and his wife, the renown dancer, choreographer and director Jean Erdman, to his Skywalker Ranch north of San Francisco for a stay, such invitations being an extreme rarity for Lucas.

TOP MYTHOLOGIST

JOSEPH CAMPBELL

Joseph Campbell believed that participation in ritual could put you into a direct experience of mythic reality --- paralleling almost exactly the thoughts as presented through Castaneda of Don Juan in later years. Of course, at the time of the meeting between Castaneda and his colleague and their early summer of 1960 Road Trip together, even though Castaneda may very well have heard of Joseph Campbell through formal anthropological studies and required reading at UCLA --- or simply striking out on his own through a personal thirst for knowledge --- at this stage of the game, Joseph Campbell or not, Castaneda was YET to meet Don Juan. The thing is, even though Castaneda was nowhere close to being a full-fledged Shaman --or anything else of any consequence in the realm of the spiritual or occult (at the
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time) --- he continually kept finding himself having fleeting flashes of intuition in an almost primordial inkling of future events. So said, in a precursor to his shamanistic future it is my belief that:

Paralleling a phenomenon that Buddhists refer to as Dharmadhatu, AND,

combined with a growing despondency that was constantly being fed and refed by the non-acceptance of faculty powers-that-be, AND,

even though Castaneda was yet to be formally coached or versed in things shaman, THAT

just meeting a man with the last name Campbell would have been considered by him as nothing less than a perfect OMEN.

THE PERFECT OMEN Regarding his very FIRST contact with Don Juan during the Nogales Bus Station Meeting in the late summer of 1960, Castaneda writes in A Separate Reality (1971):

"The old man (Don Juan Matus) looked at Bill and smiled. And Bill, who speaks only a few words of Spanish, made up an absurd phrase in that language. He looked at me as if asking whether he was making sense, but I did not know what he had had in mind; he then smiled shyly and walked away. The old man looked at me and began laughing. I explained to him that my friend sometimes forgot that he did not speak Spanish."

Now, if, in my opinion Castaneda "felt" or "read" his colleague Bill was an omen as I have suggested or not, OR, if Bill's last name being Campbell was conceived by him as an omen or not --- inturn impacting him positively on his decision to go on the Field Trip in 1960 as I have suggested --- in the overall scheme of things my opinion really doesn't matter much one way or the other. Why? Because one year later, on Thursday August 11, 1961, as presented in Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Castaneda tells us WHAT Don Juan Matus has to SAY about Bill during his Nogales bus station
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encounter AND whether Bill was an omen or not. Don Juan speaking to Castaneda says:

"The decision as to who can be a warrior and who can only be a hunter is not up to us. That decision is in the realm of the powers that guide men. That's why your playing with Mescalito was such an important omen. Those forces guided you to me; they took you to that bus depot, remember? Some clown brought you to me. A PERFECT OMEN, a clown pointing you out. So, I taught you how to be a hunter. And then the other perfect omen, Mescalito himself playing with you. See what I mean?"

Reinforcing everything I have presented thus far, Don Juan says, and I quote, "THOSE FORCES guided you to me; they took you to that bus depot, remember? Some clown brought you to me. A PERFECT OMEN, a clown pointing you out." The clown Don Juan was referring to of course, because his Spanish was so poor it sounded to Don Juan as though he was a Fool or an idiot babbling inanities, was none other than Castaneda's colleague Bill. He didn't mean just any clown, however. It went much deeper than that. Don Juan was drawing on his knowledge of centuries of tradition from the history of the sacred clown, or as he is known, the ShamanTrickster. Clown or no, through it all it is easy to see from the above that it is not just me and me alone making the case that the presence of Castaneda's colleague Bill being in his life is viewed as an omen --- but Don Juan himself making the case. He is saying that Bill's presence upon the scene in the overall scheme of things is not only an omen, but the Perfect Omen. Don Juan says, speaking of Castaneda, "those forces guided you to me" and "some clown brought you to me" which by inference carries an exceptional underlying principle which most people miss --- that being:

THOSE EXACT SAME FORCES THAT GUIDED AND BROUGHT CASTANEDA TO DON JUAN, HAD AS WELL, GUIDED AND BROUGHT THE CLOWN TO CASTANEDA IN THE FIRST PLACE.

That is the why Castaneda was moved to act --- but the final compulsion that pushed him over the edge to actually act was driven by a single overwhelming event as described in the ever important Footnote [1].

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THOSE FORCES

THOSE FORCES, left undefined or ambiguous in nature by Don Juan in conversation,

I earlier attempted to focus somewhat more clearly for you the reader in the opening paragraphs at the top of the page, presenting:

"With an unknown outcome reeking with destiny, the trip, except possibly for Castaneda's non-understanding but unwavering sense of the Power of the Omen, started out relatively uneventful." The one other factor congruently placed into the mix was his colleague's last name. Although seemingly an extremely minor incident in the overall flow of events to most outside observers, Castaneda, upon hearing it for the first time was practically bowled over by his name, the results of which sent shivers down his spine and striking him as being nothing less than a potential destiny-laden OMEN --- and the strength of which Don Juan would eventually call those forces --- but at the time, as a neophyte, Castaneda was unable grasp and subconsciously unable to stop, pushing him over the top into making his final decision to go on the Road Trip.

In A Separate Reality (1971) Castaneda, writing of THOSE FORCES elaborates somewhat more specifically:

The world is indeed full of frightening things and we are helpless creatures surrounded by forces that are inexplicable and unbending. The average man, in ignorance, believes that those forces can be explained or changed; he doesn't really know how to do that, but he expects that the actions of mankind will explain them or change them sooner or later. A sorcerer, on the other hand, does not think of explaining or changing them; instead, he learns to use such forces by redirecting himself and adapting to their direction. That's his trick. There is very little to sorcery once you find out its trick. A sorcerer, by opening himself to knowledge, falls prey to those forces and has only one means of balancing himself, his will ; thus he must feel and act like a warrior. I will repeat this once more: Only as a warrior can one survive the path of knowledge. What helps a sorcerer live a better life is the strength of being a warrior.

In Power of Silence (1988), as to omens, Castaneda writes:

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When a shaman-sorcerer interprets an omen he knows its exact meaning without having any notion of how he knows it. This is one of the bewildering effects of the connecting link with intent . Sorcerers have a sense of knowing things directly. How sure they are depends on the strength and clarity of their connecting link. The feeling everyone knows as "intuition" is the activation of our link with intent.[2]

Hence, refering back to his quotes cited above from The Active Side of Infinity, Castaneda follows them up with:

Disregarding my feelings of defeat, I started on a journey with him.

At the time of the meeting with Campbell and the start of their Road Trip together Castaneda might not have been a full-fledged shaman-sorcerer or even remotely close, however, unknown to himself or anybody else, he was headed in that direction --- it was what the future held --- his "intuition" or Dharmadhatu gave him a sense of knowing things, it was just that his strength and clarity for understanding that intuition was yet to be refined. That was a job to be left for Don Juan Matus.

NOTE: If you have not gone to the all important Footnote [1] that gets into the why Castaneda was moved to act --- that is, the final, single overwhelming event that pushed him over the edge to actually go on the Road Trip with his colleague Bill, please see Footnote [1]. FOOTNOTE: [1]

If you read the page on William Lawrence Campbell reached here or through the previously cited link above, you will have learned that, at least in his later years anyway, Campbell was known for his ability to spin tall tales. One of the stories he told, and I cannot be sure how accurate it is, involved Carlos Castaneda. My uncle and I had been sitting in a small cafe near Taos, New Mexico with a tribal elder friend when Campbell, whom my uncle seemed to know, stepped up to the table and invited himself to join us. Before long the conversation turned to Castaneda and Campbell told the following story. However, before we go on, what he told should be prefaced with what I wrote in the Road Trip:

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Why has Bill not come forward? It could be he was never aware he was Bill --- or for that matter, never aware either, that the young Hispanic he was traveling with eventually turned out to be Carlos Castaneda. So too, in either of the two cases, if he found out or become aware of the situation later in the scheme of things relative to his life, maybe, on an official level, he just let it go.

It was well after the fact that Campbell learned that the young Hispanic he was traveling with throughout the desert southwest on the Road Trip eventually turned out to be Carlos Castaneda. When the incident below happened Castaneda wasn't even "Castaneda," nor did Bill ever find out who he was until years later. If you recall, the Road Trip ended in the summer of 1960. Castaneda's first book was not even published or released for public consumption until 1968, EIGHT full years after the Road Trip. Up until that time (the release of his book), for the most part, nobody had ever heard of Castaneda. So said, even though Castaneda is called Castaneda by Campbell, and thus then by me in the text, at the time of the conversation in the desert we are talking about here (i.e., at the archaeology site during the late spring, early summer of 1960), Castaneda was NOT the Carlos Castaneda he came to be AFTER he met Don Juan Matus, the powerful Yaqui Indian shaman-sorcerer he apprenticed under. Within the bounds of memory, as told by Campbell over coffee and food in the cafe near Taos I present the following:

"Castaneda had shown up at the archaeology dig site a few days earlier. The two of us had seen each other or passed by each other on a number of occasions at the site, but we were yet to meet or talk. Although other student level people were either working at the dig and/or participating in various aspects of camp maintenance, Castaneda wasn't. He basically went around most of the day bugging high ranking anthropologists asking nothing but a continuous stream of unending questions. As I viewed it, in that he didn't seem to be there to participate in the dig nor particularly willing to help around the camp Castaneda wasn't being received very favorably by anybody at any level. "It was just after sunset and a number of us, like we often did, were gathered around the fire bullshitting and going over the days events in the evening twilight. Castaneda had joined the group but basically just sitting there looking at the fire. Sitting directly across from him was a young woman that I had not seen before who had been reading a book until it got too dark to see. Her legs and lap were partially covered with a blanket and when the darkness set in she had placed the book on her lap folded open to the page where she had left off, with the cover facing up. I was just in the process of introducing myself to Castaneda, shaking his hand and telling him my name was Campbell like in the soup when a powerful gust of wind suddenly came out of nowhere -- like a Vortex or dust devil --- which was a nearly impossible happenstance for so late in the day. The wind tore loose part of a close by canvas
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shelter top and the sudden noise of the flapping canvas and swirling dirt and dust must have startled the woman with the book because without thinking she jumped to her feet and in doing so, grabbing the blanket, the open book fell from her lap right into the fire. "Without a moment of hesitation Castaneda reached into the fire and pulled out the book, brushing it off and folding it closed. He then handed the book back to the woman. When he did he looked at the title then at me. The title of the book The Hero With A Thousand Faces (1949) by Joseph Campbell. When he looked back at the woman she was gone."

The reason I am able to recall Campbell's story so vividly that day in the cafe is because of how fascinating all of the incredible coincidences seemed to be, yet how nonchalant both my uncle and the tribal elder reacted to it all. Years later I discussed the incident over a period of some hours in some depth with my uncle and he basically dismissed the whole thing saying Campbell was merely a gadfly. However, I looked at incident somewhat differently. In Castaneda's eighth book Power of Silence, Don Juan tells Castaneda that when a person's Spirit has something extremely important to communicate, it will "knock" three times. As found in CASTING BONES: The Art of Divination if one has the ability or is spiritually intune with such things, three clear, unambiguous "meaningful coincidences" will be received showing that a certain decision is needed to be made or that an indication of a prediction is correct:

1. Campbell steps up to introduce himself to Castaneda. As soon as he says his name an unusual (for that time of day) vortex-like gust of wind comes up and blows loose a nearby canvas shelter top. 2. The noise startles the woman sitting directly across from Castaneda that had been reading a book. She jumps up and the book falls into the fire. 3. Instinctively Castaneda reaches into the fire and pulls out the book. When he hands it to the woman he sees the title of the book isThe Hero With A Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell.

Even though I mention I discussed the incident above many years after our conversation in the cafe and my uncle basically dismissed the whole thing saying Campbell was merely a gadfly, he did not dismiss everything totally. In so saying, he still knew and maintained a great respect for the natural order of things, the unfolding of events, the role of those involved in the events, and the power within and behind those events. For example, during that later discussion or one closely related, I tried to get my uncle to clarify some of my questions regarding the emaciated man thought by me to possibly be the Death Defier. The following,
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regarding that discussion, is found in a footnote to Julian Osorio, said by Castaneda to be Don Juan's master teacher:

During that discussion I tried to entice him (my uncle at the original source) to repeat for me what he had said that night outside the cave, verbatim, in whatever language it was, then translate into English the actual indepth meaning behind the words. He told me it ended that night in front of the cave and not to concern myself. However, he refused to say the Defier's name out loud intimating that he, my uncle -- and I quote --- "did not want to be found." According to Wallace, as told to her by a Castaneda confidant, by invoking the Death Defier's name in Tula, that is Nahuatl, the Defier's spirit will awaken.

So said, my uncle saying Campbell was a gadfly or not, my uncle still carried ahead of himself that great respect in the unfolding of events. That respect --- if you want to call it that --- truly shows up in the above where my uncle says he refused to say the Defier's name out loud intimating that he, my uncle --- and I quote --- "did not want to be found." It shows up over and over in his actions as well as in the many conversations I had with him, one example being the above interaction between the mysterious woman at the firepit and Campbell. Regarding that interaction, Campbell said:

"Without a moment of hesitation Castaneda reached into the fire and pulled out the book, brushing it off and folding it closed. He then handed the book back to the woman. When he did he looked at the title then at me. The title of the bookThe Hero With A Thousand Faces (1949) by Joseph Campbell. When he looked back at the woman she was gone."

My uncle told me that even though Castaneda looked back immediately after handing the book to the woman and she was gone, such was not the case with what Campbell saw from his vantage point across the fire. If you recall it was just after sunset and a number of people, including Campbell and Castaneda were gathered around the fire talking and going over the days events in the evening twilight. Campbell told my uncle, even though the woman was gone for Castaneda in almost the micro-second it took him to look back, such was not the case for himself. Campbell said, looking toward the woman across the fire after Castaneda handed her the book, he caught a glimpse of her dark silhouette between the flames rising superimposed against the twilight sky, and then almost in a wisp of smoke the blackened silhouette seemed to sail through the air beyond view in the darkness.

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In that I had a similar incident transprire as a young boy at the Sun Dagger site, I was curious if it could have been the same woman. As it turned out she did not seem to be. However, as part of that initial curiosity, when I asked my uncle if Campbell had ever made mention of what the woman looked like he said he had asked Campbell once. Campbell told him he had never seen the woman around the camp previously and only saw her briefly for a few moments across the fire that night. But, if he had to describe her, he thought she did not seem like a student or dig worker, but, although not dressed in the fashion of an Indian woman, more like what Hollywood thought a movie Indian woman should look like. Fairly good looking, probably around thirty with a somewhat Rubenesque body. She had a full face, high cheekbones and long black hair done in two long braids. In Castaneda's third book Journey to Ixtlan (1972) in a section called 'A Worthy Opponent' dated December 11, 1962, Castaneda writes that over a month before he had a horrendous confrontation with a sorceress called 'la Catalina.' 'La Catalina' had been mentioned briefly previously in his first book with a date being cited by him as November 23, 1961, intimating from the words of Don Juan Matus that it was the very first time he, Castaneda, became aware of her existance. However, it wasn't until Journey to Ixtlan was released that Castaneda attemped a visual description of what "la Catalina" looked like:

I scrutinized her carefully, and concluded that she was a beautiful woman. She was very dark and had a plump body, but she seemed to be strong and muscular. She had a round full face with high cheekbones and two long braids of jet black hair. What surprised me the most was her youth. She was at the most in her early thirties.

Castaneda's book Journey to Ixtlan did not come out for general consumption until 1972. The conversation between my uncle and me, wherein the description of the woman at the firepit was brought up, happened some two to three years prior to that.

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FOOTNOTE: [2]

"The feeling everyone knows as intuition is the activation of our link with intent." Carlos Castandea, Power of Silence (1988)

What westerners generally perceive as "intuition" and what Castaneda refers to in the above quote as the feeling everyone knows is similar in extent to what is spoken of in the ancient Sanskrit language as Dharmadhatu. According to the correct view of Dharmadhatu all dharmas in the past, all dharmas at present and all dharmas in the future are all together in the Dharmadhatu. Ordinarily people can experience only a minute part of all dharmas at present, and therefore people sustain the view that dharmas in the past are gone and future is unpredictable. If one practices according to Buddhist teachings and thereby comes out of the bondage of the fixed view of a space-and-time framework, then it is possible to experience or witness dharmas in the past as well as dharmas in the future. According to biographies of ancient Buddhist sages, some witnessed that the ancient assemblage of Buddha, holy beings and his disciples, in which the teachings recorded in Wondrous Dharma Lotus Sutra were given, had not dispersed yet. There are also numerous records of valid prophecies regarding important events or personages in Buddhist history. Even though for common people these matters are difficult to believe, nevertheless, among practitioners it is common experiences that knowledge of future events are revealed now and then through inspirations.

If you follow the narrative in his various writings, possibly driven by the inspirations of future events not yet unfolded, Castaneda, through a series of occurrences invisibly encased around and interwoven through the Road Trip with his colleague
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Bill, met Don Juan Matus, the shaman-sorcerer he was to eventually apprentice under. Don Juan himself had, many years before, at the age of twenty, came in contact with a person Castaneda termed as a master sorcerer by the name of Julian Osorio. Osorio inturn introduced Don Juan into a lineage of sorcerers that was purported to be twenty-five generations long. Don Juan told Castaneda that Osorio had been an actor and during one of his theatrical tours he had met another master shaman, Elias Ulloa, who transmitted to Osorio the knowledge of his lineage of sorcerers and thus inturn through Osorio to Don Juan, then down in lineage to Castaneda. The interwoven tapestry of it all almost beyond comprehension. I am reminded of a comment attributed to Larry Darrell, the main character in the novel The Razor's Edge by W. Somerset Maughamwherein at the end of the allimportant Chapter Six Larry says:

"Nothing that happens is without effect. If you throw a stone in a pond the universe isn't quite the same as it was before. . . It may be that if I lead the life I've planned for myself it may affect others; the effect may be no greater than a ripple caused by a stone thrown in a pond, but one ripple causes another, and that one a third; it's just possible that a few people will see that my way of life offers happiness and peace, and the they in turn will teach what they have learnt to others."

To be sure, for a great many, even though all are not always able to put their finger on it, the familiarity of it all has a similar ring --- in the end being not unlike what has recently been called the Butterfly Effect. Sometime in the early 1960s, a scientist named Edward Lorenz, in an accidental qurik, came across what should have been an otherwise a nearly non-observable event --- an event that terminated in a huge magnification of the downstream outcome --- and because of that outcome, in December of 1972, Lorenz asked members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington, D.C., "Does the Flap of a Butterfly's Wings in Brazil set off a Tornado in Texas?" --- making reference to the fact that small, almost imperceptible happenstances or events can have huge and momentous consequences. For me, it has always been an incredible set of circumstances --- call it coincidence, fate, Karma, or the coming together of cosmic forces --- that set the scene allowing me to cross paths with Carlos Castaneda, however briefly, during those after work meetings with various artist friends of mine BEFORE he ever became "Carlos Castaneda" (for more, see the last few paragraphs of Don Juan Matus). Those meetings occurred less than a year before Castaneda met his anthropologist colleague Bill and they left on their Road Trip together, a Road Trip in which
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Castaneda met both the informant and the powerful Shaman-sorcerer Don Juan Matus. Incredibly, I had met Castaneda's colleague Bill, AKA William Lawrence Campbell, as well --- long before those artist meetings --- when I was a young boy around ten years old or so, with further meetings as an adult. My uncle and Bill were long time friends and it was he that Bill took Castaneda to see during the Road Trip wherein the the two of them rode around all over New Mexico and Arizona for several weeks visiting "all the places where he (Campbell) had done work in the past,

renewing in this fashion his relationships with the people who had been his anthropological informants," (The Active Side of Infinity, 1998). In that Castaneda's colleague Bill and theinformant knew each other all along AND the informant knew

the old man and of his shaman-sorcerer background as well (at one time or the other both had apprenticed under the same teacher) I have always harbored a deep personal suspicion --- albeit still sanctioned under the umbrella of "those forces" as exhibited so prominently in the events found in Footnote [1] --- that through a carefully concocted minipulation of known or upcoming events the informant, unknown to me and all the while being intermeshed into the quagmire of unfolding events, actually orchestrated or choreographed the whole Nogales Bus Station Meeting. Taken together I must say I have always found it exceptionly interesting that Campbell had never seen the woman at the campfire before and at that given moment she just happened to be reading a book by Joseph Campbell. Although highly unlikely I suppose such an event could possibly be minipulated along with the convenient placement of the canvas shelter in proximity of the fire ring. The problem I have is the sudden gust of a vortex-like wind. Surely even the informant would be unable to choreograph that. Or could he?

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POWER OF THE SHAMAN:

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Where Does It Come From, How Does It Work?

"I do not deny that White Light Shields are protective. I simply maintain that Shamans channel what I call heavy voltage. Ordinary people may NOT have the power to draw upon sufficient "voltage" to produce the desired effect." (source)

PRESENTED BY

PROLOGUE: In the fall of 1991, in the remote part of an ancient mountain range, high above the tree line, a group of modern day hikers stumbled across the body of a man frozen to death in the snow, fully dressed in clothes of a tribal nature, his body nearly intact and almost perfectly preserved. Incredibly, tests showed the man had been frozen 5000 years years before, sometime between 3350-3140 BC. After a rather intensive investigation over a period of years by a team of scientific experts from a variety of fields, it was concluded that the man appeared to have been a Shaman, presumably dying of exposure when caught out in the open during a mystical retreat on the side of the treacherous mountain.
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Several associated facts presented themselves for such speculation. Like many shamans from many cultures the body was tattooed; his weapons, consisting of a roughly-hewn bow made of yew, several unfinished arrows, and an all wood dagger, resembled dummy weapons associated with shamans in other cultures; he carried a medicine bag containing, among other things, a leather thong on which was threaded two pieces of a common birch fungus Piptoporus betulinus which contains polyporic acid C, an effective antibody, especially against stomach microbacteria, which would indicate, if not a specific knowledge of herbs and natural ingredients, at least a general acceptance of their use. A similar fungus, also closely associated with the birch, Amanita muscaria, is not only hallucinogenic but has been used by various shamans cultures as an aid to ecstasy before the dawn of history. It is possible that, if not authentically hallucinogenic, the ones the frozen iceman carried, could at least have been believed to be so; he also carried with him, and unusually so, a copperheaded axe. A very rare object for the time, and because it was metal, for the most part quite valuable in those days, marking him as an individual of high status. Last, an item not discussed at any length in the numerous reports on the frozen man was a net he carried, an object not typically found in hunting as much as used to trap spirits and seen in various forms as a dream catcher and such. Taken together, the fact that he carried only what HE needed and not a variety for wider shamanistic use, again underscores his mountain sojourn as having a more "mystical retreat" aspect to it. And finally, while it is true the frozen man's location was somewhat close to ancient trade routes and trails which ran through passes nearby, he was NOT actually on one. Aerial photographs of the area show that the site he was found is not in easily accessible terrain, thus it is thought unreasonable he simply strayed there from one of the passes. The body was well above known trails, high in the mountains above the 10,400 foot level, and alone it seems, suggesting the possibility that he had traveled there to be closer to the gods. The problem most people had with the situation was not that the man might have been a Shaman, because a preponderance of the evidence seemed to implicate nothing other than that, but where he was found. Not in the tundra of Siberia or the ancient ice path of the Rocky Mountains in North America, but the Oetzaler Alps between Austria and Italy, a location that eventually became modern day Europe, an area NEVER thought of in the present era for any sort of a background in things Shaman or even of tribal people. Yet there he was, a 5000 year old frozen Shaman right in the heart of Europe.[1]

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INTRODUCTION:

Shamanism is truly an ancient cross cultural world-wide phenomenon, albeit sometimes lost to those of the modern era in the murky reaches of time, as the above story on the Iceman might attest. For many of us though, there remains a thread, however slight or however tenuous, whether it is linked to Early European Tribes, Native American Tribes, African Tribes, or elsewhere, that ties us to that past. As things have unfolded in my life the viability of that thread has been made clear, not just by me on my own, but by those who have never lost touch with their specific cultures or beliefs. In my adult years my practicing backround in things Shaman is primarily based on Obeah, the Shamanistic beliefs found in some of the countries in and around the Caribbean. However, in earlier years, as a very young boy, I traveled, as will be mentioned below, somewhat intensively with my Uncle in similar "circles" throughout various indigenious cultures of the desert southwest. It is admitted I am unable to speakspecifically to or of Shamanistic beliefs of ALL Shaman related cultures. I can however, because of my background of having been apprenticed to a Jamaican man of spells called an Obeahman for many years, speak of where the power of the Shaman he exhibited, and from which I learned, is drawn. From that same experience I can speak as well of the results of what happens when that "power" is used, misused, or implemented, and where I learned, regardless of what culture a Shaman resides, the "power" of the Shaman "comes from." For the most part and for those most truly involved, in the end Shamanism is a calling. How does one know if they have a "calling?" It is not so much YOU that determines such a thing, but the "selection out" that occurs from or by another Shaman that senses an innate ability that is somehow radiated or felt. You yourself may not even know per se' although your whole life you may have had "this feeling." It just needs to be focused and that is what another Shaman can do. That is what happened in my case and to countless others like me throughout the centuries.

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ANIMAL TOTEMS: Your Selection or Their Selection? My Father's brother, my Uncle, spent nearly sixty of his eighty-four years in the desert southwest, having moved to the Taos, Santa Fe, New Mexico area sometime in his twentys. I was quite young when my mother died and when my Father remarried he brought my Uncle in to "oversee" me. My Uncle had been married at one time as well, but, although he maintained a loosly related association with his wife, he was for all practical purposes, divorced. The woman he was separated from was a Native American of the Little Shell Plains Ojibwe and a fourth level Midewiwin, a secret Ojibwe Medicine Society. She was a very powerful curandera that I had met only in passing, and initally, for the most part, she never payed much attention to me one way or the other, although I sensed something very extraordinary or "different" about her. She reminded me of a lightning or thunderstorm raging in the distant mountains. You only felt safe because you weren't there, although you knew if you were, the storm had the power to wash you away or destroy you by the might of it all. One day, when I was around ten years old or so, I went for a hike deep into the desert unescorted. When my Uncle discovered I was gone he went looking for me. During my walk I happened across the carcass of a dead rabbit and was fascinated by it for some reason. When my Uncle found me after cresting a small hill he saw me squatted down with the carcass. Joining me quite comfortably in a circle with the rabbit were three what were, because of this incident, to eventually become my Totem Animal --- VULTURES. From what he was able to discern from his initial vantage point I was neither afraid of them nor were they remotely afraid of me. As well, and he swore this to be true --- although I have absolutely no recollection of it and construe it as a possible total misinterpretation of facts --- that the vultures and I were sharing meat from the carcass between us. When my Uncle told his estranged wife about the incident she suddenly was very interested in me. You see, for some reason, in today's neo-Shaman environment there has been a stress placed on finding one's "power animal." The contemporary neo-Shaman workshops blind people to the fact that real animals are also spirit and power, and every bit as important, or even more so, than than a spirit guide that appears in some vision. The medicine woman knew that.

Where there is carrion lying on the ground, meat-eating birds circle and descend. Life and Death, seemingly two, become one. The living attack the dead, to their own profit. The dead lose nothing by it. They gain as well, by being disposed of. Or they seem to, IF you must think in terms of gain and loss. --Adapted from "Zen and the Birds of Appetite"

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During those years my Uncle spent a lot of time traveling in and about some very isolated sections of the desert and interacting with the indigenous populations thereof because of various, as he called them, "art" related ties he had with them. During many of those travels I went along. It was on one of those trips, at the suggestion of his wife, as a very young boy, I was introduced to things Shaman: We were on one of our excursions deep into a remote part of the southern New Mexico desert to visit a very strange man my Uncle was somehow associated with. After arrival the two sat together in the shade outside the man's shack and talked for a good part of the day while I either played with the dogs or sat in the cab of the truck fiddling with the radio. Just as we were leaving the man came up to me and handed me a huge long black with white feather, the biggest, longest feather I had ever seen. It was nearly as wide as the span of my hand and it's length was as long as I, a ten year old boy, was tall. Tied to the quill shaft, which was much, much bigger around than any piece of schoolroom chalk, was a small, double strand of leather string with ten colored beads attached, one for each of my years he said. He told me the feather once belonged to a very magnificent bird that was very important to his culture and the desert's well being, but now it belonged to me. Soon my Uncle and I were on the long dusty road back, and, as kids are wont to do on occasion, I was leaning out the window, flowing the feather in the wind as we sped along. Suddenly the feather was whipped out of my hand and I watched it as it blew high into the sky, caught first in the turbulance from the truck, then by the desert breeze itself, only to disappear from sight altogether. True, it was only a feather, but for some reason it's loss affected me in a deep, sad sort of way. The next morning my Uncle and I got up and went out to the truck to do a few errands. Laying alone in middle of the pick-up bed near the back of the cab in a very fine smooth layer of dust was a long black with white feather, with a small, double strand leather string with ten colored beads tied to it's quill. Left in the dust also, were what appeared to be several very large, clear footprints of a huge bird along with scratches and talon marks on the tailgate as though, if even for a short time, a giant avian had roosted or landed there. (see)

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What is trying to made apparent in the above is that I did not select the feather. It was given to me after I had been selected out. The feather was a very rare and important symbol, a giant feather as long as I was tall, of which I immediately lost. However, and this is the point I wish to make clear, I saw the feather fly high into the sky to be gone I thought, forever to the desert winds, only to somehow, mystically, reappear overnight placed carefully in the back of the pickup truck where it would be sure to be found by either myself or my Uncle the next morning. If you follow the links regarding my Uncle and the Obeah you will see later both the original feather and a present day heir to that feather, my Totem Animal, played very important roles in my experiences of things Shaman. See footnote [2] A couple of quick comments regarding the giant feather, estimated to have been nearly as large as a wing feather from the twenty-five foot wingspan Teratorn type bird Argentavis Magnificens, with a feather length of 1.5 meters (60 inches...that is, FIVE FEET) and a width of 20 centimeters (8 inches). When the feather was first given to me, even though it was of a huge size, I, as a young ten-year old boy with a vivid imagination, did not fully grasp the ramifications of it all. For me at the time, it did not seem impossible that a bird could not be of any size, so a feather as long as I was tall did not seem at all that improbable. It was only into high school and beyond that it came to me that I had been in the presence of something truly remarkable. I never saw the bird the feather came from, nor have I ever seen a second or other feathers of such large size, but for a bird to have required such an enormous feather in the first place, it would have to had been truly a giant creature. For the Shaman to have imparted something so rare, meaningful, and valuable to me, a mere ten year old boy with then no history or background, speaks volumes. To learn the fate of the feather, that is, what happened to it, please visit Meditation Along Meteor Crater Rim. See also the home of the ancient ones of the desert southwest, Pendejo Cave, and tales of the sacred Native American site The Sun Dagger. For those who would question the validity of the existance of a feather of such size in the first place, as stated in the closing sentence of theLegend of the Giant Bird:

The loss of the Buffalo would have a devastating effect on the migratory habits of birds of such size. Not everybody makes the connection, but it is pretty simple stuff, without the herds, migration became very difficult and many of the young birds as well as some of the adults died on their way south. We are talking twenty-five foot wingspan Teratorn type birds, animals so huge they couldn't hunt in woodlands or heavy foilage. They needed large open area suchs as the Great Plains or the Argentine Pampas to navigate and hunt.

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In any case, by the time I was old enough for high school my Father had divorced and remarried and my Uncle had long ago gone back to the Taos, Santa Fe, New Mexico desert he loved. It was during those high school years I met a person that had studied under a venerated Maharshiin India, and he, like his teacher before him, was Enlightened. It was he who introduced me to things Zen. Years later I was to travel to and live in Jamaica where through a series of events I met a Shaman man of spells called an Obeah. It was under the auspices of the relationship between the Obeah and myself, after he looked deeply into my eyes and saw that the Shadow of Death had brushed across my soul, that I truly learned of Shamanistic "power," what that power could do and where that power "came from."

The Wanderling's Journey (click image)

THE SHAMAN'S POWER: From Whence Does It Come?

An Ally is a power a man can bring into his life to help him, advise him, and give him the strength necessary to perform acts, whether big or small, right or wrong. This ally is necessary to enhance a man's life, guide his acts, and further his knowledge. In fact, an ally is the indispensable aid to knowing. Carlos Castaneda, "THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way to Knowledge."

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"I do not deny that White Light Shields are protective. I simply maintain that Shamans channel what I call heavy voltage. Ordinary people may NOT have the power to draw upon sufficient "voltage" to produce the desired effect." Gloria Feman Orenstein, "Toward an Ecofeminist Ethic of Shamanism and the Sacred."

Carlos Castaneda apprenticed under a Yaqui Indian Shaman named Don Juan Matus that Castandeda refers to interchangeably as a sorcererand man of knowledge. In lineage his teacher's teacher was a Shaman-sorcerer known as a Diablero, an occult spell-master with evil powers said to have the ability to shape shift. There is some controversy if Don Juan Matus was a real person or a composite of several different people, but one or several, most agree Castaneda's observations regarding Shamans and Shamanism still remain valid. In his works Castaneda writes that a sorcerer's power, that is, a Shaman's power, is "unimaginable." He goes on to say in a copyrighted interview in Time Magazine (March 5, 1973):

"The full use of power can only be acquired with the help of an "ally", a spirit entity which attaches itself to the student as a guide. The ally challenges the apprentice when he learns to "see," as Castaneda did in the earlier books. The apprentice may duck this battle. For if he wrestles with the ally - like Jacob with the Angel - and loses, he will, in Don Juan's slightly enigmatic terms, "be snuffed out." But if he wins, his reward is "true power the final acquisition of sorcery membership, when all interpretation ceases."

However, Castaneda had written previously in his first book THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way Of Knowledge (1968):

The idea that a man of knowledge has an ally is the most important of the seven component themes, for it is the only one that is indispensable to explaining what a man of knowledge is. In my classificatory scheme a man of knowledge has an ally, whereas the average man does not, and having an ally is what makes him different from ordinary men.

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An ally is A POWER capable of transporting a man beyond the boundaries of himself; that is to say, an ally is a power which allows one to transcend the realm of ordinary reality. Consequently, TO HAVE AN ALLY IMPLIES HAVING POWER; and the fact that a man of knowledge has an ally is by itself proof that the operational goal of the teaching is being fulfilled.

In reality, the "full use of power can only be acquired with the help of an 'ally'", that Castaneda speaks of, like the use of medicinal plants, drugs, or herbs (Aushadhis) -- which he used intially, but denied the necessary use of later --- is a second level of use between the Shaman and the actual power source, the same source the "ally" would draw upon for power. The key here is, in relation to the 1973 interview, and what most people miss when they start discussing an "ally" is "a spirit entity which attaches itself to the student." A STUDENT, not a full fledged Sorcerer or Shaman. While what Castaneda is trying to impart from his first book rings true "... a man of

knowledge has an ally, whereas the average man does not, and having an ally is what makes him different from ordinary men," the "having an ally" should really read "having power." People think that an ally is an entity of some sort, when in reality it
is an euphemism --- a euphemism for the POWER of THE POWER OF THE SHAMAN. Castaneda actually says so when he presents in his first book that "An ally is a power" and "...to have an ally IMPLIES having power." However, and this is the clinker, either you have it or you don't, it is NOT implied or garnered from another. The true Power of the Shaman is not divisible, the power and the Shaman are ONE. It is not held and shared with or by an ally then metered out in some fashion.

However, ally or no, Sorcerers and Shamans using powers to call up answers, predict the future, facilitate or induce spells, or garner assist or knowledge from planes other than the conventional were thought to have a spiritual servant, a "familiar spirit," in obeisance from other realms. The word "familiar" is from the Latin familiaris, meaning a "household servant," and was intended to express the idea that Sorcerers and Shamans had spirits as their servants, ready to obey their commands. Having a "familiar" as a servant is a far cry from a ally as outlined above. Just the same, the punchline is Sorcerers and Shamans "were thought to have familiars." That doesn't mean they HAVE one, only thought to have one. Basically what you have here is a word-based description shaped around the phenomenon. It is a verbal explanation by the layperson to make sense of how any unexplained form of the Power of the Shaman manifests itself. (see) In the essay Starwars, Castaneda, and the Force, discussing the Shaman and any potential allies they may or may not have, meet, or battle, the author writes:

"Tests and trials are commonplace in the quest for knowledge: a pre-requisite in fact. One such trial occurs when the aspirant sorcerer (shaman) has accumulated enough personal power to meet the entity referred to as the ally. This encounter cannot be avoided it is a mandatory, transitional event. Allies are essentially shapeless and
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featureless forms all differing and quite terrifying. The aspirant must confront the ally, grab onto and overcome it."

Any of you that are familiar with the massive trials and tribulations faced by the Buddha as he reached toward Enlightenment under the Bodhi Tree battling the three Daughters of Mara and a host of other demons will recognize the same elements in the statement above. Once defeated, as done so by the Buddha, they no longer are, although the power remains, albeit as it were, inherited. Jose Maria Poveda in his rather extensive book on shamanism, citing another, offers in his very first chapter something similar to the following:

"Dont allow yourself to be directed by an identity that calls itself your guide. Why? Because invoking infinity is much larger, much more satisfying, more valid for the experience of the soul than being directed by an external entity."

"Because invoking INFINITY is much larger, much more satisfying, more valid for the experience of the soul than being directed by an external entity." By 1998 and Castaneda's last book allies are beginning to take a back seat and he goes on to write in The Active Side of Infinty speaking of INFINITY and the importance of INFINITY:

Infinity is everything that surrounds us: the spirit, the dark sea of awareness. It is something that exists out there and rules our lives. My steps and yours are guided by infinity. The circumstances that seem to be ruled by chance are in essence ruled by the active side of infinity: intent. What put you and me together was the intent of infinity. It is impossible to determine what this intent of infinity is, yet it is there, as palpable as you and I are.

Of course the infinity of which Castaneda speaks is synonymous with the "emptiness" refered to in ancient texts as Sunyata, and it is not just "out there" as Castaneda implies. Sunyata is the WHOLE, encompassing, encompassed and THE encompassing.

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The majority of the people reading this will probably be familiar with the meaning of the word limousine. A limousine is usually considered something like a large luxurious automobile usually driven by a chauffeur. The word limousine is a french word and there is really no english equivalent. That is, if you call it anything else, a town car or whatever, it is either a limousine or it isn't. In the same sense, for those of us who speak english there is no single, specific word that encompasses the full the meaning of the power of the Shaman. There is a Japanese word, like many words that have come to us through other cultures such as patio, tomato, karma, carburetor, and kayak, which have no other real specific english equivalent, that has become assimulated into our language. The word of which I speak is Joriki. Joriki roughly translates into: the power or strength which arises when the mind has been unified and brought to one-pointedness. This is more than the ability to concentrate in the usual sense of the word. It is a dynamic power which, once mobilized, enables us even in the most sudden and unexpected situations to act instantly, without pausing to collect our wits, and in a manner wholly appropriate to the circumstances. One who has developed Joriki is no longer a slave to his passions, neither is he at the mercy of his environment. Always in command of both himself and the circumstances of his life, he is able to move with perfect freedom and equanimity. The cultivation of certain supranormal powers is also made possible by Joriki, as is the state in which the mind becomes like clear, still water. There is another word, Siddhis, from the truly ancient, ancient language Sanskrit that hasn't fallen into the everyday lexicon that carries with it a similar meaning. There are differences, however. If you have ever focused the sun to a pinpoint on your skin using a magnifying glass and felt how quickly and powerful the burning sensation is, that is more like Joriki. Siddhi is more like the power of ocean waves. You may be able to stand against a mild wave or two, but even giant mountains are eventually turned to nothing but sand or even less by their power. In the end the Power of the Shaman is akin to a longer reach or extension of the Shaman, focused through his own abilities or level of expertise. That level of expertise can vary from being very minuscule and tiny to beyond scope --- with the results depending on the abilities, will, and intent of the individual. Jeffery Ellis, a Buddhist-Shaman of some reknown and co-founder of The Toltec Mystery School in Boulder, Colorado, writes in his bookDreamingAwake:

"Power is one of the first barriers the warrior (Shaman) must pass in becoming a Man of Knowledge. Power is intoxicating. Magic and Siddhi create a drunkenness that is very tricky to sidestep. What you wish for comes true, like Aladdin and the Genie."

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THE "POWER"

There is an axiom that goes: This being present, that arises; without this, that does not occur.

Which is elaborated on from very ancient texts: Acts do not perish, even after hundreds and thousands of years. On meeting the right combination of conditions and time, they bear fruit.

Vasubandhu the great Indian Abhidharma master wrote: Material and mental elements uniterruptedly succeed one another in a series, a procession that has action as originating cause

He continues to write, and this is the punchline: The successive moments of this procession are different; therefore there is an evolution or transformation of the series.

The successive moments are different, that is they are not the same. If they were the same they would not be different. On a fine grain level the differences are practically imperceptible. On a coarse grain level the differences manifest themselves more readily. Take those differences and place them into their operating field of conditions and the evolution or transformation compounds itself. Conditions? The word conditions is an english word used in context from the Sutras for the Sanskrit word Pratyaya which means (roughly): "the pre-existing conditions that allow primary causes to function." Which basically means if the conditions are absent, then the causes are prevented. Conditions are the milieu, stage set, or playing field where acts or impulses unfold. They can be increased by other conditions, decreased by other conditions, or replaced by other conditions to accelerate or postpone results in the stream of events. Which means that conditions can, but not necessarily DO modify. They arise primarily on a broader scale from causes in the distant past. When conditions do manifest themselves they are for the most part not defined, that is, they are undefined or spent, meaning they cannot
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create or impact figuratively further downstream responses. However, even though they are spent, they are still extremely powerful in how they impose themselves on the immediate circumstances in which they are operating. To wit:

Any shift in any fashion in the conditions up or down or across the


stream relative to the cause will impact the resultant outcome of that cause.

It is IN those areas of conditions that the Shaman operates, where small yet powerful well aimed Shaman directed impluses ever so slightly nudge the conditions which inturn modify the outcome. Sometimes the flow from the past is so strong that little can be done except to stand fast, but there are also times when the flow CAN be diverted in almost any direction. (source) And that is true, sometimes the flow IS strong or stronger relative to the Shaman, but that is where the knowledge of the Shaman comes in. Often they must bide their time and wait, other times their abilities and power can overcome the "flow." Remember, from the quote above: ANY shift (that is ANY shift no matter how large, small, or imperceptable), in any fashion in the conditions up or down or across the stream relative to the cause will impact the resultant outcome of that cause.

It should be noted that on the scientifc side of things, no matter how complex any system may be or appear to be AND, even though it may not be able to be determined or known, they rely upon an underlying order. To that extent very simple or small systems and events can cause very complex behaviors or events. This latter idea is known as Sensitive Dependence On Initial Conditions, a circumstance discovered in the early 1960s by Edward Lorenz the scientist usually credited with the discovery of the Butterfly Effect --- making reference to the fact that small, almost imperceptible happenstances or events, over time, can have huge and momentous consequences. Shamans and others of the same propensities or ilk develop the abilities needed to use the key that allows them to interact with conditions, thus allowing a change that would otherwise NOT transpire or occur in the normal flow of events if they had not interceded. However, Karma-wise, the resultant outflow from that or any change does not fall on the back of the Shaman IF he is acting in the stead of another person. It is as though the Shaman does not exist and is in effect merely an extension or limb of the person perpetrating the change. The person wanting the
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change or perpetrating the change catches all the resultant outcomes from that change. See: Good and Evil In Zen Enlightenment and attendant links. Some people would argue quite stringently that Buddhism and Shamanism are for the most part nowhere related and to draw an anology would be creating a thin line. However, the coincidence of characteristics and striking similarities between Buddhist adepts and ShamansShamanism: Archaic Techniques of Ecstacy. For example, the abilities of the Arhat relating to the sixfold knowledge of the worthy ones that includes not only the ability similar to the Cloud Shaman to appear and disappear at will, but also the oft cited case in Buddhism and Zen by the Venerable Pindola Bharadvaja where the venerable Arhat was adomished by the Buddha for flying and performing miraculous acts infront of the faithful. Somewhat interesting is the fact that the word shaman, used internationally, has its origin in manch-tangu and has reached the ethnologic vocabulary through Russian. The word originated from saman (xaman), derived from the verb scha-, "to know", so shaman means someone who knows, is wise, a sage. Further ethnologic investigations shows that the true origin for the word Shaman can be tracked from the Sanskrit initially, then through Chinese-Buddhist mediation to the manch-tangu, indicating a much deeper but now overlooked connection between early Buddhism and Shamanism generally. In Pali it is schamana, in Sanskrit Sramana translated to something like "buddhist monk, ascetic". The intermediate Chinese term is schamen. (source)

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DIABLERO

DIABLERO: from Spanish: diablo, devil --- a sorcerer connoting a sense of evilness; usually with the ability to shapeshift. Carlos Castaneda is perhaps the foremost, or at least the most well known example of a person whose indoctrination process or apprenticeship, it has been said, was guided by a shaman-sorcerer influenced by a Diablero. Castaneda's teacher has been described in several books by the writer as being a Yaqui named Don Juan Matus who learned his art under the direct auspices of a Diablero. The following is how Castaneda presents it in his first book, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (1968):

"At first I saw Don Juan simply as a rather peculiar man who knew a great deal about peyote and who spoke Spanish remarkably well. But the people with whom he lived believed that he had some sort of secret knowledge, that he was a brujo. The Spanish word brujo means, in English, medicine man, curer, witch, sorcerer. It connotes essentially a person who has extraordinary, and usually evil, powers." "In describing his teacher, Don Juan used the word diablero. Later I learned that diablero is a term used only by the Sonoran Indians. It refers to an evil person who practises black sorcery and is capable of transforming himself into an animal - a bird, a dog, a coyote, or any other creature."

As the noted mystic, philosopher, scholar and cabbalist Abraham Isaac Kook (18651935) explains:

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The basic principle guiding the sorcerer is an attempt to RECONCILE the opposing animalistic and divine aspects of man. The sorcerer's SOLUTION to this constant struggle is to SUPPRESS MAN'S DIVINE NATURE , allowing the base instincts to rise above and totally rule over the individual and society in general.

Evil is considered the direct opposite of that divine nature. Any attempt by anyone or anything, a spell caster, a witch, or sorcerer for example, to suppress that devine nature through the use of occult powers or any other means would thus then be viewed as a cohort, collaborator, or supporter of things evil --- and the why behind the reason the word diablero, as a sorcerer, carries ahead of itself the connotation of a sense of evilness. A.I. Kook goes on to say the means the sorcerer uses to reach his goal are complex, and some may have inherent worth. Some parts of his knowledge could also be utilized for the good. Recognition of evil is awareness of the negative side of creation, which can grant greater understanding of the positive side.

Buddhism and Zen negates the whole concept by viewing the opposites of reconciliation and suppression, animalistic aspects and divine nature, good and evil as samsaric, or dualistic. That is, for one to exist or be, the other has to exist or be, making their "existence" EMPTY because one side can not stand alone and just "be" without contrasting or bringing into play the existence of the other. Although somewhat more complicated, simply put, AS AN EXAMPLE, in a Zen sort of way, the phenomenon of hot and cold. Although hot and cold seem to be the opposite they are NOT separate, but actually fully integrated-interdefused aspects of the same single, nondual phenomenon. It is not to say if you touch something hot you won't burn yourself, only that both are inter-related aspects of a single non-dual temperature spectrum. That is why both the boiling point of water and the freezing point of water can be found on the same thermometer. So saying, in comparing aspects, there would be no "need" to suppress or reconcile. See CONSULTING MEDIUMS: What Buddhists Believe.

A HUGE COYOTE COMETH: As to whether diableros existed or ever existed and if so, are there any still around today, Castaneda posed the question after an incident late one night driving along a lonely road deep in Mexico with two Indian friends. During that drive they came across what seemed to be a huge dog crossing the road. One of the Indians traveling with Castaneda said it was not a dog, but a huge coyote. Pulling over, Castaneda slowed to a stop in an effort to get a closer look. Unafraid, the animal stayed well within the range of the headlights for awhile then casually wandered off into the
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darkness and sagebrush. It was unmistakably a coyote, but it was at the very least twice the size of any normal coyote.[1] Castaneda's friends agreed that it was a very unusual animal, and one of them suggested that it could have even been a diablero. Later, Castaneda used the account of that experience to question several Indians in the area about the existence of diableros. Following are two results he published regarding his questioning, the first from an old Indian woman and her belief:

"Are there any diableros nowadays?" "Such things are very secret. They say there are no more diableros, but I doubt it because one member of a diablero's family has to learn what the diablero knows. Diableros have their own laws, and one of them is that a diablero has to teach his secrets to one of his kin."

The second from a very old man:

"What do you think the animal was?" "A dog from one of the ranches of that area. What else?" "It could have been a diablero...?" "A diablero? You are crazy! There are no diableros." "Do you mean that there are none today, or that there never were any?" "At one time there were, yes. It is common knowledge. Everybody knows that. But the people were very afraid of them and had them all killed." "Who killed them?" "All the people of the tribe. The last diablero I knew about was S- -(at this point Castaneda leaves the full name out in the text using only a capital "S" and a dash). He killed dozens- maybe even hundreds of people with his sorcery. We couldn't put up with that and the people got together and took him by surprise one night and burned him alive." "How long ago was that?" "In nineteen forty-two." (i.e., the year 1942)
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"Did you see it yourself?" "No, but people still talk about it. They say that there were no ashes left even though the stake was made of fresh wood. All that was left at the end was a huge pool of grease."

Notice that the old man, when asked who killed them (i.e., the diableros), responds by saying "All the people of the tribe." The old man says that the tribe surprised the last diablero one night, apprently sometime in 1942, and burned him alive. The tribe did it in collusion --- a team effort. It is a tribal-level thing dealing with what seems to be a tribal member in some fashion. The old woman responding to the question about diableros tells Castaneda that such things are very secret. She goes on to say THEY, whoever "they" are, say there are no more diableros but she herself hedges her answer by saying she personally doubts that there are no more. She most likely bases her response on some sort of personal experience rather than on speculation. It should be brought to the attention of the reader that in regards to the use of the word diablero by Castaneda's teacher, Don Juan, in describing HIS teacher --- as referenced from the quote above as found in THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN --- if you follow the narrative of Castaneda in his various writings he does go on to say, at least by his tenth and next to last book, titled Magical Passes (1998), that Don Juan at the age of twenty came in contact with a person Castaneda termed as a master sorcerer Castaneda calls by the name of Julian Osorio. Accordingly, Osorio then introduced Don Juan into a lineage of sorcerers that was purported to be twenty-five generations long. Don Juan told Castaneda that Osorio had been an actor and during one of his theatrical tours he had met another master shaman, Elias Ulloa, who transmitted to Osorio the knowledge of his lineage of sorcerers and thus inturn through Osorio to Don Juan, then down in lineage to Castaneda. The question then arises, if such was the case as the above, a lineage of sorcerers, WHAT HAPPENED to the diablero aspect to it all? The following is found in The Death Defier:

As for Don Juan's teacher being a diablero and being in his lineage, none of the teachers named, from Sebastian on, seem to fit that description. However, regardless of the names, Osorio and Ulloa included, it still seems the true indentity of Don Juan's actual REAL LIFE teacher was never discovered. Both Osorio and Ulloa, as well as the others, although perhaps "real" and perhaps shaman-sorcerers in a lineage as Castaneda says they are, as I see it, are really no more than stand-ins. It was when Don Juan LEFT Osorio in 1925 that the diablero and his true teacher comes comes into play.

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The fact that Castaneda's teachers Ulloa and Osorio do not fit the description of a diablero is neither here nor there in that it was not until AFTERCastaneda left Osorio in 1925 that his teacher, as a diablero comes into play. If the last diablero was killed in 1942 there was at least 17 years between 1925 and 1942 for Don Juan to study under one. However, as stated above, the death of the last diablero, or the murder of as the case may be, was at the tribal level dealing with a tribal person --- leaving open the high possibility of a non tribal affliated diablero (or diableros) to continue to exist. In DON JUAN MATUS: Real or Imagined the following is found:

(I)n and around the mountains and deserts of Sonora, southern Arizona or New Mexico Don Juan sought out, met and was taught by an isolated, real, albeit, unnamed shaman-sorcerer said to be a diablero. Now, if Don Juan's master teacher was actually a diablero or thought to be such by tribal kinsmen, a shaman with an evil bent as stated by Castaneda, then, even though originally he might have had ancestoral ties or a blood-line tribal affiliation with either the Yaqui or Yuma, although highly respected and cautiously sought out, he was, like Don Juan himself, most likely a loner or an outcast.

At the bottom of the same page the following is found as well, inserted here with only this observation: The incident with the very strange man cited below --- and considered to be a diablero --- transpired sometime in the 1948 through 1950 bracket, some six to eight full years AFTER the death of the so-called last diablero:

For all I know the very strange man that handed me the feather as reported in The Boy and the Giant Feather could have been Don Juan --- or for that matter, even better, the very strange man might have even been Don Juan's own unknown, albeit, unnamed master teacher said to have been a diablero.

For more clarification on this diablero thing and whether ANY of Don Juan's teachers, as suggested in the above paragraph, could have been or were diableros or not --- or if it even matters --- please see The Death Defier as it gets into the background as to why Don Juan told Castaneda his teacher was a diablero and the importance of his reasoning behind it. See as well The Old Man In the Desert.

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FOOTNOTE [1]

From a quote in the above text Castaneda relates he was driving late one night along a lonely road deep in Mexico with two Indian friends when:

"(T)hey came across what seemed to be a huge dog crossing the road. One of the Indians traveling with Castaneda said it was not a dog, but a huge coyote. Pulling over, Castaneda slowed to a stop in an effort to get a closer look. Unafraid, the animal stayed well within the range of the headlights for awhile then casually wandered off into the darkness and sagebrush. It was unmistakably a coyote, but it was at the very least twice the size of any normal coyote. "Castaneda's friends agreed that it was a very unusual animal, and one of them suggested that it could have even been a diablero."

An interesting incident regarding a huge coyote, diablero or not, said to be at least twice the size of any normal coyote transpired under similar circumstances involving the Wanderling when he was a young boy. The incident, presented below, is extrapolated in part from the original source found at Sri Ramana Maharshi: the Last American Darshan and linked again at the bottom of the footnote:

When the Wanderling was around eight years old, because of the death of his mother some years previously, he ended up living with his grandmother. During that period of his life the man that married his mother's sister committed suicide. When neighbors heard all the screaming, commotion, and running around surrounding the event several of them came over to lend assist in whatever manner they could. During the ensuing milieu the Wanderling was accidently knocked unconscious by a falling garage door. Caught up in the confusion surrounding the suicide he was all but forgotten. One of the neighbors found him and carried him into the house and put him onto his bed fully clothed. The police and an ambulance arrived and soon law enforcement and paramedics were running all over the place. Along the way the Wanderling was attended to and his head wound dressed. Sometime way late into the night or the still-dark early morning hours he apparently got up and wandered off. It wasn't until after sunrise that a family member discovered he was gone and nowhere to be found. In the meantime an old man driving a jeep on the way back to his home located far away somewhere out in the middle of desert found the Wanderling walking all alone along some road. How he got to where he was or when or where he was found was
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never learned. The story told by his grandmother was that the old man had no money so, in those long-before cell phone days, he wasn't able to make a phone call --- nor did he have a phone at his shack. Instead he took the Wanderling to the house of a woman friend of his even farther out in the desert, also with no phone. Some weeks later they took him into town and left him at the sheriffs office. When the Wanderling's grandmother came to get him the sheriff said he had personally known the old man and woman for a very long time and that both were fine and good people. The man was a rough and tumble old guy who was known to have been a onetime a muleskinner or swamper for the 20 mule team borax wagons that used to make the trek up and out of Death Valley and across the desert. Now days the sheriff said, the old man spent most of his time in one fashion or the other participating in Native American sweat lodge ceremonies and most likely the Wanderling did too. The sheriff assured the grandmother there was no need to worry about anything related to the Wanderling's overall well being during the time he was in their company. According to the sheriff the two just didn't experience the passage of time like others seemed to. The period of time he was with them was really no more than just a matter of them coming into town relative to their needs. When the Wanderling's grandmother picked him up, strung around his neck was a small cloth sack like a Bull Durham tobacco bag filled with 50 or more pieces of buckshot. The sheriff told her that one day when the old man did not return the woman and the Wanderling went out across the desert looking for him. Although they didn't find the old man during their search they did come across a fairly large but barely alive coyote that had been all shot up in the hindquarters and left rear leg by buckshot. They took the wounded coyote, a coyote that was easily twice the size of any normal one, back to the woman's shack then spent the rest of the night and all of the next day pulling buckshot out of the rear and back leg of the animal, throwing the little lead balls into a pan. The woman patched the coyote up as best she could and nursed him back to health over a couple of days. Then, with his strength regained, the coyote simply limped off into the sagebrush. However, before she turned the coyote loose she took the buckshot that had been removed from the wounded animal and counted the lead spheres out into two equal piles, putting one pile into a little cloth bag and the other pile into a second identical cloth bag. Then she put one bag around the Wanderling's neck and the other around the coyote's neck. Before the Wanderling and his grandmother left, the sheriff told her the old man and woman had driven into town that day and if she wanted to thank them for caring for boy he could arrange it. The old man was sitting in the jeep on the passenger side alone when they drove up to meet them. The woman was just coming out of a nearby grocery store carrying a handfull of items. The Wanderling's grandmother said the old man excused himself for not getting out of the jeep during the introduction because he had taken a terrifically bad fall in the desert some days before having scraped up his rear and left leg so badly he could barely move. She talked with them for awhile, thanked them and left. Before they got home she removed the bag from around the Wanderling's neck because she was afraid, since it was filled with buckshot, that the sight of them might upset her daughter considering
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how her husband died. The Wanderling's grandmother also told him there must be some kind of desert tradition or something because the old man in the jeep had what appeared to be small sack of buckshot tied around his neck just like the Wanderling's --- a bag that seemed to be an EXACT duplicate of the one that had been tied around the Wanderling's neck.

NOTE: Not all the the information found in the above footnote was garnered exclusively from conversations with the Wanderling's grandmother. Some of it was extrapolated and added to the mix from an interaction that occurred some years later with a Native American tribal spiritual elder. When the Wanderling was around ten years old or so he and his uncle spent a lot of time traveling in and around some very isolated sections of the desert southwest interacting with the indigenous populations thereof because of various, as his uncle called them, "art" related ties he had with them. On one of those trips they crossed paths with a tribal spiritual elder that apparently recognized the Wanderling from being with the old man at a sweat lodge ceremony. The elder knew the significance of the bags of buckshot between the old man and the Wanderling. As well, he told the Wanderling's uncle he remembered that the Wanderling was very special in that everybody knew as a young boy he had been touched by the Native American spritual deity or Yei he refered to as the White Painted Woman.

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THE DEATH DEFIER HOW THE DEATH DEFIER RELATES TO DIABLERO t has long come down to us from out of the ripples of shamanistic lore that the quasi or semi organaform-being called the Death Defier was a human from long ago who, on becoming a shaman-sorcerer, used his powers to try and escape death. He managed to alter his form so he would more closely resemble inorganic beings. However, in the process, he was trapped by the lure of power from those same inorganic beings. Eons later he managed to escape. Existing on a thin threshold between the not-fully human and the inorganic he couldn't eat, yet still needed energy. To evade his former captors and sustain his form, he needed to constantly search for energy. In the year 1725 AD the Death Defier, addicted to living and needing energy, down on power, in his last dying moments, cornered a then minor shaman from a long line of minor shamans by the name of Sebastian. In a noticable weakened state he was able to extort energy from him --- but only through a deal. To stay alive each generation of shaman-sorcerers in Sebastian's lineage would GIVE the Death Defier some of THEIR energy in exchange for knowledge --knowledge and secrets gained or learned by the Death Defier over thousands and thousands of years. Thus the Death Defier "earned" the name tenant and by doing so, a new lineage was born. The secret is, in making the deal, the crafty Sebastian and those that followed, have given the the life-addicted Defier only enough energy to survive. Some years before that 1725 meeting, at the time of the Spanish Conquistadors, the Spaniards, using their swords, guns, and cannons, all deployed under the flag of their religion, either destroyed or eliminated most of the ancient sorcerers the same way the shaman-sorcerers of the early European tribes in the Old World had been either destroyed or eliminated.[1] In spite of the sorcerers ability to turn into animals, birds or giant birds[2], harness the elements and the use of an Ally, their power was unable to withstand the continued and overwhelming onslaught of the ever increasing number of Spaniards. A turning point did not occur until 1725 when the Death Defier came into contact with Sebastian.

Two hunderd and thirty-five years later, sometime in the late summer of 1960, UCLA student-anthropologist and soon to be best selling authorCarlos Castaneda crossed paths with a nearly white-haired Yaqui Indian he came to call Don Juan Matus at a Greyhound bus station in Nogales, Arizona.[3]- Although he had been told by his fellow colleague, a former onetime lowly Pothunter turned highly reputable amateur archaeologist and eventually to be called by the name of Bill in various Castaneda writings, that the old man was an expert on medicinal plants and such, unbeknownst to Castaneda at the time, Don Juan was also a powerful Shamansorcerer linking back in lineage to Sebastian. Approximately one year after that initial meeting Castaneda began an apprenticeship under Don Juan, in turn learning a good portion of Don Juan's craft and eventually
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joining his lineage of Shaman-sorcerers. It is from that apprenticeship that Castaneda's series of twelve books sprang. As the chronology of the books unfold, Don Juan tells us through the words of Castaneda that EVERYTHING about himself --- that is, what Don Juan has ever learned or come to know and whatever he is/was or turned out to be --- was a direct legacy from his teacher, Julian Osorio. In turn Osorio had inherited everything from his teacher, Elias Ulloa. Elias had learned from Rosendo; he from Lujan; Lujan from Santisteban; and Santisteban from Sebastian. Before Sebastian there were eight others, but, according to Don Juan, they were quite different. They had a different attitude toward sorcery as well as a different concept of it, although they were still directly related to his line of sorcery. It wasn't until Sebastian's encounter and eventual alliance with the Death Defier, also sometimes called the tenant, rendered in the masculine in Spanish by Castaneda as el desafiante de la muerte and "the tenant" as el inquilino, that the lineage truly changed. That encounter dramatically altered their lineage and is considered the single most stringent tangent point that deliniates the "old" seers from the "new" seers. It was from the downstream outflow of that lineage that Don Juan, in the early to mid-1960s, took Castaneda to meet the Death Defier for the very first time. Castaneda was introduced to a MAN, a strange Indian who was not old but not young either and very, very thin, almost emaciated. In Art of Dreaming (1993), Chapter 11, The Tenant, Castaneda remembered mostly the emaciated man's strange accent and his use of one odd metaphor when describing things he allegedly had seen: mis ojos se pasearon, my eyes walked on. For instance, he said, "My eyes walked on the helmets of the Spanish conquerors."

HOW THE DEATH DEFIER RELATES TO DIABLERO: In his first book, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (1968), Castaneda writes that Don Juan Matus learned his craft from a Diablero:

"In describing his teacher, Don Juan used the word diablero. Later (Castaneda) learned diablero is a term used ONLY by the Sonoran Indians. It refers to an evil person who practises black sorcery and is capable of transforming himself into an animal - a bird, a dog, a coyote, or any other creature."

As for Don Juan's teacher being a diablero and being in his lineage, none of the teachers named, from Sebastian on, seem to fit that description. However, regardless of the names, Osorio and Ulloa included, it still seems the true indentity of Don Juan's actual REAL LIFE teacher was never discovered. Both Osorio and Ulloa, as well as the others, although perhaps "real" and perhaps shaman-sorcerers in a lineage as Castaneda says they are, as I see it, are really no more than stand-ins. It
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was when Don Juan LEFT Osorio in 1925 that the diablero and his true teacher comes comes into play.[4] The shaman-sorcerers, or man of knowledge as Castaneda calls them, were, for all practical purposes, purged or wiped out by the Spanish Conquistadors. The actions by the Conquistadors is not totally dissimilar to what happened to the African priests and tribal spritual elders that were brought to the New World via the slave trade. Although haphazardly eliminated rather than in a methodical fashion by the power of a sovereign nation, those that made it alive, young or old, experienced or beginner, used their knowledge as their only way to gain the upper hand or power over their slave masters. In the process the strengths of their religious beliefs eventually diverged. They became magnified by time and place, existing side-by-side and sometimes overlapping. One branch veered toward what one might consider more coventional shamanism with some minor tribal sorcerey while the other branch increasingly went more and more underground, manifesting itself toward the occult and cloaking itself in the ever more secret as found now in, for example, on the African-Caribbean side of things, Obeah and on the Spanish-Mexican-Indian side of things, diablero. Added to the mix as well, on the Mexican-Indian side of things, at the time of the conquest the Aztecs and others in the region (and in their historical past) practiced human sacrifice, a total antithesis to the religion promulgated at the end of the sword by Cortez and his ilk. The indigenous Mesoamerican religious class was divided between the ruling class priests in the major civilization centers with their sacrifices and that of the more simple religious practices as found amongst the regular hinterland folk with their more-or-less general Shamans, spiritual elders, and root doctors. On the human sacrafice side of things, whether a layperson or priest in acceptance with the rituals or not, there is a sort of underlying evilness that the practice carries ahead of itself. That split, between the onetime sacrifice adherents and it's innate connotation of evilness and the practices of the healers, is what drove the early shaman-sorcerer atmosphere at the time of the conquest --- to a point where eventually there existed a dual or double branch, of which one ended being diableros. The Spanish overlords blanketed both with the same heavy hand, but it is easy to see that regular folk would have a tendency to seek out, use, support, and if need be cover up or hide the healer types, while the opposite would be true for the others. It probably ran deep that it wasn't too many years before the priestly class were raiding their villages for sacrifices. More than likely individuals of that branch found themselves isolated, shunned and ostracized, all the while facing the clear probability that they could be turned in or exposed. Like the Obeah spellmasters that would come a few years after them in the Caribbean they found themselves going more and more into hiding and underground to practice their craft, increasingly concentrating and embracing the power while letting evaporate any semblance of the other branch. As stated above, in the lineage before Sebastian there were eight others, but, according to Don Juan, they were quite different. It is my belief that the original eight in lineage were from the general healer side of shaman-sorcerers and that the Death Defier was from the yet unnamed other branch. Sebastian liked the
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power and knowledge of the Defier all right, but not what backed it up. So in a sense, with the alliance formed between Sebastian and the Death Defier there became a sort of combined synthesis of branches, with the power of the unnamed branch muted. It wasn't until Don Juan came upon the scene and liked the power as well, that in 1925 he decided to leave Osorio and seek out a teacher on the pure, now named, diablero side of things. For more on the Death Defier please see Julian Osorio. Equally as interesting and continuing in a similar vein,The Sun Dagger. For the record, it is not just Death Defier-like inorganic beings that are known for "staying alive" over long periods of time. Some seemingly normalorganic beings such as a variety of swamis, gurus, and teachers that have come to be known in the west, but originally said to have been associated with the mysterious hermitage somewhere in Tibet called Gyanganj --- a secret place of great masters said to be hidden in a valley high in the mountains of the Himalayas or possibly on on the flatlands to the north of Kailash-Mansarovar --- are reported to have had extremely long life spans. Trailanga Swami lived 300 years while the highly venerated and mysterious Indian sage Mahavatar Babaji is rumored to still be alive after 1800 years. Equally of interest is the digambara monk that contributed to Sri Ramakrishna's full Awakening, Totapuri. Totapuri, like Trailanga Swami, is said to have lived 300 years as well. Gyanganj, the home of immortals, is known throughout western cultures mostly as Shangri La, but generally in history and Buddhist lore as Shambhala.

NOTE: If you have not read any of the Footnotes as of yet please scroll down toward the bottom of the page.

Can a nicuicanitl huiya Xochitl in noyollo ya nicmana nocuic a ohuaya ohuaya o xoxpanxoco o xoxopanxoco Xoxonapo[5]

FOOTNOTE [1]

Some people would question the validity that the Spanish Conquistadors or anybody else would have the ability or power to destroy or eliminate most or any of the ancient sorcerers or shamans depicted as being so potent and powerful by Castaneda and others. In the above you may recall the following:

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In spite of the sorcerers ability to turn into animals, harness the elements, or the use of an Ally, their power was unable to withstand the continued and overwhelming onslaught of the ever increasing number of Spaniards.

If you have gone to the website called Diablero you will find quoted a conversation between Castaneda and an old Indian man he was questioning about whether diableros ever existed and if so, were there any alive now, that is, in the present day time. The old man tells Castaneda they were all killed, the last being in 1942. Castaneda, sort of dumbfounded, asks who killed them and the old man replies:

"All the people of the tribe. The last diablero I knew about was S- - (at this point Castaneda leaves the full name out in the text using only a capital "S" and a dash). He killed dozens- maybe even hundreds of people with his sorcery. We couldn't put up with that and the people got together and took him by surprise one night and burned him alive."

And that is the secret. The old man says the people got together and took him, the diablero, by surprise. That is how the Spaniards were able to eliminate the sorcerers --- after no doubt what was an initial learning curve of failure, as stated above and incorporating surprise, the power of the sorcerers and shamans was unable to withstand the continued and overwhelming onslaught of the ever increasing number of Spaniards.

FOOTNOTE [4]

In the above to which this footnote is referenced the following is presented:

"As for Don Juan's teacher being a diablero and being in his lineage, none of the teachers named, from Sebastian on, seem to fit that description. However, regardless of the names, Osorio and Ulloa included, it still seems the true indentity of Don Juan's actual REAL LIFE teacher was never discovered. Both Osorio and Ulloa, as well as the others, although perhaps "real" and perhaps shaman-sorcerers in a lineage as Castaneda says they are, as I see it, are really no more than stand-ins. It was when Don Juan LEFT Osorio in 1925 that the diablero and his true teacher comes comes into play."
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The question is, IF the true indentity of Don Juan's actual REAL LIFE teacher was never discovered, was the Old Man In the Desert that I met traveling with my uncle on a deep excurison into the desert, and said to have tuberculosis not unlike how Osorio is written, AND Osorio --- the actor that according to Castaneda, during one of his theatrical tours met Elias Ulloa, who inturn transmitted to Osorio the knowledge of his lineage of sorcerers and thus down to Don Juan and then to Castaneda --- ONE and the SAME person? OR was the old man in reality the actual REAL LIFE teacher of Don Juan that was never discovered? JULIAN OSORIO

Don Juan's Teacher

1871-1978

the Wanderling

In his first book, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (1968), Carlos Castaneda writes that HIS teacher, the Yaqui Indian shaman-sorcerer he apprenticed under he calls Don Juan Matus, learned his craft from a person Don Juan calls a Diablero. So saying, Castaneda presents the following to his readers:

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"In describing his teacher, Don Juan used the word diablero. Later (Castaneda) learned diablero is a term used ONLY by the Sonoran Indians. It refers to an evil person who practises black sorcery and is capable of transforming himself into an animal - a bird, a dog, a coyote, or any other creature."

However, for whatever reason, as the chronology of the Don Juan books unfold through the words of Castaneda, the all important aspect of the word diablero used by Sonoran Indians and ONLY by Sonoran Indians, quickly fades into the shadows of non-thought and non-existence as Don Juan tells us that EVERYTHING about himself, that is, what he has ever learned or come to know and whatever he is/was or turned out to be, was a direct legacy from his teacher, Julian Osorio --- who was, interestingly enough, as written by Castaneda, NOT of Native American/Indian extraction. Nor was he Yaqui, Mesoamerican, or Toltec Nagual either, BUT the son of European immigrants to Mexico. In turn Osorio had inherited everything from his teacher, Elias Ulloa. Elias had learned from Rosendo; he from Lujan; Lujan from Santisteban; and Santisteban from Sebastian. Before Sebastian there were eight others, but, according to Don Juan, they were quite different. They had a different attitude toward sorcery as well as a different concept of it, although they were still directly related to his line of sorcery. It wasn't until Sebastian's encounter and eventual alliance with the Death Defier that the lineage truly changed. Castaneda, ignoring or tossing aside any earlier referenences regarding a Diablero as teacher, all the while trying to clarify anything he could for the reader about Osorio, asked Don Juan what he looked like. Don Juan responded by saying:

"Do you know that to this day it's hard for me to visualize him? I know that sounds absurd, but depending on his needs or the circumstances, he could be either young or old, handsome or homely, effete and weak or strong and virile, fat or slender, of medium height or extremely short."

Now, Don Juan may or may not be waffling OR Castaneda, using his thoughts and words through the voice of Don Juan may or may not be waffling. However, waffling or no, to show how a common thread runs through the occult and things shaman and how they draw sustenance and nourishment from the SAME source, notice, no matter how widely separated others may seem in culture, time, distance and execution, how closely Don Juan's description of Osorio parallels that of Obatala, one of the major Orishas of the Seven African Powers:

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OBATALA --- also sometimes, Obatalia. From the same root-word as the most feared and respected of the shaman and occult-related men of spells called an Obeah:

Obatala is androgynous and sometimes depicted very old, sometimes quite young. He is gentle, a sky-god, but corresponds to Damballah, the primordial serpent as well. Notice the heavy ring of integrated opposites in his being such as motherfather, androgynous, young-old, dark-light, good-evil, right-wrong --- paralleling such deep religious themes as the concept of Sunyata for example.

Again, Castaneda asked for clarification. In addition to saying Osorio was thin and muscular, Don Juan responded a second time with:

"His hair was black, thick, and wavy. He had a long, fine nose, strong big white teeth, an oval face, strong jaw, and shiny dark-brown eyes. He was about five feet eight inches tall. He was not Indian or even a brown Mexican, but he was not Anglo white either. In fact, his complexion seemed to be like no one else's, especially in his later years when his ever-changing complexion shifted constantly from dark to very light and back again to dark. When I first met him he was a light-brown old man, then as time went by, he became a light-skinned young man, perhaps only a few years older than me. I was twenty at that time."

In the above, from the eighth book of Castaneda's series, titled Power of Silence (1988), Don Juan, speaking of Osorio, makes him out to be fairly healthy young man. However, some years before when Ulloa and Osorio met for the very first time, it wasn't quite like that. Ulloa came across him laying face down in a field bleeding to death through his mouth, so much so that he thought the young actor was not going to survive. Osorio told him he didn't want to die, that he was too young. Using herbs Castaneda says Ulloa was carrying in his pocket, but most likely carried in aMedicine Bag or pouch, Ulloa was able to stop the bleeding. He then told Osorio he would never be able to repair the damage inflicted on his body, but he could --- no doubt, using the Power of the Shaman with directly aimed impulses toward conditions [1] --- deviate his Karma infected approach toward the cliffs of death. Ulloa took him to the mountains, taught him the ancient secrets, and with time Osorio became one of the most respected of sorcerers. Although he was never cured of his tuberculosis he still lived to the age of 107. Notice now the comparison, and almost allegory, of how, some twenty years later or so, Don Juan meets his OWN benefactor or teacher Julian Osorio:

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As Don Juan tells it, just as he was reaching twenty years of age he met a man that cajoled him into taking a job as a laborer at a sugar mill located on an isolated plantation. The foreman of the mill basically just took possession of Don Juan and made him a slave. Suffering undue harm, bodily injury, and desperation, with no other course of action, Don Juan escaped. The violent foreman eventually caught him on a country road and shot him in the chest, leaving him for dead. Don Juan was lying unconscious in the road, bleeding to death when Osorio happened along. Using his healer's knowledge, he was able to stop the bleeding, then took the still unconscious Don Juan home and cured him.

Continuing in Power of Silence, Don Juan tells Castaneda that when a person's Spirit has something extremely important to communicate, it will "knock" three times. As found in CASTING BONES: The Art of Divination if one has the ability or is spiritually intune with such things, three clear, unambiguous "meaningful coincidences" will be received showing that a certain decision is needed to be made or that an indication of a prediction is correct:

1. For Osorio the first coincidence --- or Omen as the case may be --- regarding Don Juan was a small Vortex like cyclone or dust devil that lifted a cone of dust on the road a couple of yards from where he lay, bringing attention to him in the first place. 2. The second omen was the thought which had crossed Osorio's mind an instant before he had heard the sound of the gun shot: that it was time to have an apprentice. 3. Moments later, the third omen. He ran to take cover and instead collided with the gunman, putting him to flight, preventing him from shooting Don Juan a second time and finishing the job.

Osorio immediately evaluated the three omens and knew Don Juan would be a perfect candidate to be his apprentice. Notice as well, in both cases, the near death or symbolic Death of the Shaman --- Osorio found near death from tuberculosis; Don Juan near death shot in the chest --- the Symbolic Death of the Shaman being one of the four major criteria for becoming a Shaman.(see)

Moving on, I put Osorio's birth year at or close to 1871. That would make him right near 40 years old when he first crossed paths with Don Juan and somewhere near half that age when he first met Ulloa. Ulloa left the world eight years after he and Don Juan met, making his passing around 1919. Six years later, 1925, Don Juan made the decision to abandon his apprenticeship under Osorio and returned to his
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roots --- the Yaquis or Yumas. This is where things begin to get a fuzzy, but where I think the Diablero comes in. When I was around ten years old or so my father remarried, my real mother having died some years earlier. My new mother, or Stepmother as the case may be, having noticed a propensity toward art on my part, persuaded my Uncle, who was a fairly well established artist in Santa Fe, New Mexico at the time, to come to Los Angeles, California where we lived, and tutor me. She set him up in a fully equiped artist's studio and covered all expenses. All he had to do was develop my budding art talents and arrange for me to have as many creative experiences as possible. As time crawled by in Los Angeles for my uncle, mumbling under his breath that he was unable to fully adjust to the daily stresses of what he saw as city life, took to directing more and more of his attention toward returning to his old haunts in the desert southwest. Especially so after a trip I took to Catalina Island, returning rattled with what happened to me. After hearing my story, which I sum up in THE MEETING: An Untold Story of Sri Ramana, right away he started figuring out ways to get back to the desert and take me with him. It seemed like we went everywhere and visited everything. Some were secret and sacred places, others more historical and well known. One of the not so secret but more well known places we visited was the onetime wide open western town of Tombstone, Arizona --- the town too tough to die --where, on October 26, 1881, the infamous gunfight at the OK Corral occurred. There, for the first time that I can remember, I heard the word tuberculosis. Someone there told me that at the time of the OK Corral, Wyatt Earp's friend, the gunfighter Doc Holliday, was dying of tuberculosis, and because he knew he was dying anyway, was fearless in the face of death --- and the reason why he was so deadly.(see) One day my uncle and I were on one of our excursions deep into a remote part of the southern New Mexico desert to visit a very strange man my Uncle was somehow associated with. After arrival the two sat together in the shade outside the man's shack and talked for a good part of the day while I either played with the dogs or sat in the cab of the truck fiddling with the radio tying to find stations that wouldn't come in. In relation to thatexcursion, at the bottom of the page on Don Juan Matus I write, without further elaboration:

For all I know the very strange man that handed me the feather as reported in The Boy and the Giant Feather could have been Don Juan --- or for that matter, even better, the very strange man might have even been Don Juan's own unknown, albeit, unnamed master teacher said to have been a diablero.(see)

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On the way across the desert in the truck my uncle told me the man we were on our way to see had tuberculosis. I remember it specifically because of how impressed I had been by the fact that Doc Holliday had been dying of tuberculosis, and because of it, being deadly --- I somehow liked the idea of being deadly. The man my uncle went to visit was old with nearly pure white hair. Even though I recall the tuberculosis aspect quite well because of the impression it made on me regarding Doc Holliday, it is true I was a young boy at the time and must admit an inability to remember EVERY small detail. If I had to describe the "strange man" further, tuberculosis or no, I would be hard pressed to say he was deadly. As well, although he was no longer young, judging by how he still looked, most likely in his youth he would have been slim and muscular, with a long, fine nose, strong big white teeth, an oval face, strong jaw, and shiny dark-brown eyes. He was probably somewhat shorter than five feet eight inches tall, albeit with a slight hunch of an old man. Castaneda had written that Osorio, just like the old man in the desert, had tuberculosis, but he had also written that Osorio, as mentioned previously, was NOT an Indian, being the son of European immigrants to Mexico --- making any sort of Indian background or possible appearance of same practically nill --- as well as making it equally tough for Osorio to be a diablero since in Castaneda's own wordsdiablero was a term used by Sonoran Indians and only Sonoran Indians. The old man in the desert was not Indian like the Navajo or Hopi I had been used to interacting with in most of our travels in the desert southwest. Neither was he a brown Mexican nor Anglo white either. However, as a boy I still thought he was an Indian, primarily because he looked like one --- although he spoke Spanish instead of any Indian dialect I was familar with. As I look back now there is a chance he may have been Yaqui or possibly of strong Mesoamerican heritage. To be truthful my sophistication in such matters at the time just weren't refined enough to assimilate all the subtle nuances. Interestingly enough, some four years after spending a few days in the desert with the old man, I went with my uncle to the east coast to meet with my uncle's longtime friend, Albert Einstein. I was stunned, and most surely in awe of how the fully educated and noted scientist and the shoeless old man in the dirty baggy pants living in the desert somehow seemed so similar. It is not so much how they looked per se', because for sure, when I remember how Einstein looked or see a photograph of him I don't see a long, fine nose. However, as I struggle for words here, there was almost the exact same kind of aura or knowledge about the two them that you could feel or comprehend in your bones or gut somehow --- rather thanknowing who they were being flashed over undulating thought-surfaces in a thin, veneer-like conceptual overlay using someone else's words. Seeing a man of Einstein's stature living in surroundings such as Princeton you might expect it. An old Indian living out in the middle of nowhere in a dirt floor shack is another thing.

On our second day with the old man we took off in the pick-up --- with me riding in the back and the two of them in the cab --- and under the directions of the old man,
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followed a rough almost non-road trail down into an area where a small stream trickled through the rocks. Stopping the truck we walked along the stream until we came upon a strand of willow trees where the stream curved and flattened out into a pond before it continued on. Turning and pointing up into the rocks above and behind us the old man said something in Spanish to my uncle. My uncle told me the old man said there was a small cave up in the rocks that was very sacred and wanted the two of us to climb up to it. I already had a somewhat frightening and extraordinary exprience involving a tribal or spritual elder sometime before at the Sun Dagger site and I wasn't excessively over eager to go through it again. After assurances from my uncle I hesitantly aggreed to go along. Leaving the old man behind in the cool shade of the trees we climbed the steep side of a mountain until we reached a rock ledge at the very top. After reaching the vantage point of the ledge I could easily see we were in the foothills of an even higher range of mountains that hadn't been visible from the lower level of the creek. My heart sank as I thought we were going to have to climb farther. However, although there didn't seem to be any discernible trail on the way up, along the ledge there seemed to be the vaguest outline of a path. My uncle turned to follow the path like he had been there before and I trailed along in his footsteps. In a short distance my uncle stopped like he was looking for a recognizable landmark of some kind. He cupped his hands over his eyes and looked up toward the sun, then in a few more steps, basically out of nowhere we suddenly came upon a small shallow cave concealed amongst the rocks. The cave was perfect for the two of us to sit in side by side out of the sun. My uncle's head nearly touched the top of the cave and our backs fit almost perfectly along the cool surface of the curved rock wall. When I commented on how nice the cave was my uncle told me it was man-made, having been carved out by ancient people thousands of years ago and that animals and insects and even people shied away from it because it had been infused with something that made living things feel ill at ease. Even so, I didn't feel it. At first, except for being tired from the climb, I felt quite comfortable there, I even liked it. Something about it gave me a good feeling inside. However, as time passed and in that we had no food or water and the sun began to drop low in the sky flooding the cave with heat and light, that feeling of good and comfortableness began to wane. Still we sat. The sun finally reached the top of the mountains across the valley. The very second the sun touched the mountains in its downward path I could clearly see it was centered exactly behind the point of the tallest mountain peak along the chain and perfectly aligned with the cave. I had watched the shadow of the peak and that of the wedge shaped sides from the mountain slowly crawl cross the valley below and upward along the foothills like a giant wave engulfing everything in its path until the very tip of the shadow touched into the cave. Then suddenly like an explosion of light it was gone, the black of the mountain glowing with illumination of the setting sun going down behind it leaving nothing but a slight glow along the horizon. With the sun gone it got very dark and cold.[2]

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Still we sat. I was tired, cold and hungry but, as the night wore on I began to get drowsy. Soon I was closing my eyes and nodding off, then slumped over in deep sleep. I was jarred awake hearing my uncle talking with someone just outside the cave. Thinking the person might be the old man with food or water to share I scrambled out. The person he was talking to appeared in the dark to be an old man all right, but not the one we left at the creek. This old man was very thin an emaciated, dressed in what I would almost call a dirty white peasant outfit along with what appeared in the darkness to be the paraphernalia of a shaman. His skin was extremely dry with a color almost like the dull light yellow found on the white part of over-cooked bacon. He seemed startled to see me as though he didn't expect anyone to be there. He reached out his hand in an effort to touch me and my uncle stepped between us, grabbing his arm at the wrist and stopping him. When I moved to see the man more clearly my uncle again repositioned himself between us, blocking a clear view, all the while still holding the man's wrist. With his free arm behind his back my uncle pushed me toward the cave. The unexpected move caught me off guard and I lost my footing, falling backward onto the floor of the cave. My uncle let go of the emaciated man's wrist, the two men yelling at each other eyeto-eye in an ever increasing volume. The man's bony arms were now fully outstretched in a straight upright position above his head with his baggy sleeves slipping to his shoulders and his hands curved down at the wrists, his long fingernails almost like claws --- all the while hissing like a cat in my uncle's face.[3] Suddenly the man brushed past my uncle and lunged toward the cave. I shut my eyes and pulled myself up into a fetal position to protect myself when through it all I heard my uncle yell something at the top of his voice in Spanish. Then sudden silence. I waited for the impact and the grip of the man's hands, but nothing. I opened my eyes. My face was covered with a dirty white peasant shirt and on the floor of the cave was a pair of matching white pants along with the thinning end of a huge teardrop shaped pool of grease from outside the cave --- but NO sign of the emaciated man. When I asked my uncle what had happened he told me he and the old man back at the creek were just ensuring my future, and it wasn't Spanish he had used, but, as I was to learn years later from my uncle, Latin prefaced with a northern Oaxaca or Popolocan language corruption of an ancient Mesoamerican word (or name) that I think was Xoxonapo.[4] THE OLD MAN IN THE DESERT

If Osorio was born in 1871 that would have made him around 77 years old at the time of my visit to the old man in the desert. Osorio reportedly was never cured of his tuberculosis and lived to the ripe old age of 107, 30 years beyond the 77 years of my meeting --- although how Castaneda arrived at the 107 figure is not clear as Don Juan reportedly left the world in 1973 and for all practical purposes Castaneda ended his apprenticeship with him well before that. Even if Castaneda did not know, my
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uncle knew. In one of the meetings my uncle and I had just before he died he told me that the old man I had met in the desert those so many years ago had died, citing the night of October 31, 1978. During the year 1978 an unusual TWO new moon's in one month occurrence transpired and it just so happened to occur in October, with the second of the darkened new moons on, of all things, All Hallow's Eve, Halloween night, October 31st, the same night of the old man's death --- a major convergence of conditions and coincidences.[5] The bigger question for me is, was The Old Man In the Desert I met and said to have tuberculosis not unlike how Osorio is written, AND Osorio --- the actor that according to Castaneda, during one of his theatrical tours met Elias Ulloa, who inturn transmitted to Osorio the knowledge of his lineage of sorcerers and thus down to Don Juan and then to Castaneda --- ONE and the SAME person? I don't think so. If you remember from the above, Osorio was around 40 years old when he first crossed paths with Don Juan and somewhere near half that age when he first met Ulloa, making Osorio at the time of that meeting about 20 years old or so. I also write that when Ulloa first saw Osorio during that meeting Osorio was laying face down in a field bleeding to death through his mouth, having lost so much blood that Ulloa thought the young actor was going to die. Yet when Don Juan met Osorio twenty years later he was described as very slim and muscular. His hair was black, thick, and wavy. He had a long, fine nose, strong big white teeth, an oval face, strong jaw, and shiny dark-brown eyes and a light-skinned young man, perhaps only a few years older than Don Juan who himself was 20 years old at the time. A fairly remarkable recovery for a 40 year old man found dying face down in his own blood with tuberculosis twenty years before. In my opinion the old man in the desert was the actual, real honest-togoodness teacher of Don Juan Matus, the diablero of Yaqui or Yuma descent that he sought out after leaving Osorio following Ulloa's death and that Castaneda was never able to meet or confirm. In A Separate Reality (1971) Castaneda writes:

"I remembered that Bill and I had once driven all day looking for the house of an "eccentric" Mexican Indian who lived in the area. We did not find the man's house and I had the feeling that the Indians whom we had asked for directions had deliberately misled us. Bill had told me that the man was a "yerbero," a person who gathers and sells medicinal herbs, and that he knew a great deal about the hallucinogenic cactus, peyote. He had also said that it would be worth my while to meet him. Bill was my guide in the Southwest while I was collecting information and specimens of medicinal plants used by the Indians of the area."

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Castaneda says he and his colleague Bill had spent a whole day looking for the house of an "eccentric" Mexican Indian who lived in the area. At the time of the above quote he and Bill were sitting in the Nogales Greyhound Bus Station --- the implication being that the area was somewhere adjacent to Nogales. Since the two of them had just returned from their Road Trip around the desert southwest, and it ended in Nogales rather than several hundred miles further toward the west than say, Yuma, then more than likely they had just come in from New Mexico or the general northeastern Sonora region. In the third book of his series, Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Castaneda writes that after returning to Los Angeles he "prepared himself for six months" and when he "felt ready" he went back looking for Don Juan, however NOT to or around Nogales, Arizona, but Yuma, Arizona. Citing a date during the winter recess at the end of the fall semester 1960 (i.e., Saturday, December 17, 1960), after allowing a full six months to lapse without ever seeing or talking with Don Juan since their bus station encounter Castaneda writes:

"I found his house after making long and taxing inquiries among the local Indians. It was early afternoon when I arrived and parked in front of it. I saw him sitting on a wooden milk crate. He seemed to recognize me and greeted me as I got out of my car."

So, Castaneda and his experienced driving around the southwest guide, Bill, drove around a whole day six months before and could not find "the house of an 'eccentric' Mexican Indian who lived in the area" (Nogales/Sonora), but Castaneda on his own, after simply asking a couple local Indians in a effort that he calls taxing inquiries, drove right up in front of Don Juan's house in Yuma. Noticeably, where I mention in my writings about an "excursion deep into a remote part of the southern New Mexico desert" making it (the location) possibly difficult to find, Castaneda writes about a town (Yuma) that you can drive right up in front of Don Juan's house and park. It leads me to believe we are talking about two different places and most likely two different people.[6] What Carlos Castaneda did, as a writer, was to implement the so-called writer's literary license, and shuffle together bits and pieces of information regarding Don Juan's REAL teacher gleaned from discussions over time and apply it to the actor and non-diablero Shaman-sorcerer, Osorio (i.e., at least tuberculosis; not so clear on long, fine nose, etc.), in turn eliminating his real teacher from the equation. That is why by the time The Active Side of Infinity (1998) was written Castaneda had moved the "eccentric Mexican Indian," albeit correctly indentified now as a "terrifying sorcerer," to Yuma. To wit:

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"I did remember Bill mentioning, in a very casual manner, but not in relation to the cloud shaman, that he knew about the existence of a mysterious old man who was a retired shaman, an old Indian misanthrope from Yuma who had once been a terrifying sorcerer."

Why would Castaneda do such a thing? He had to give his readers something. Don Juan was highly reluctant to share or reveal in real life to anybody, Castaneda included, who his actual teacher was --- because by doing so, in that his teacher was still alive, it could set into motion the possibility of eroding away or wilting his teacher's powers, white light shields, etc., making him vunerable to potential enemies such as predatory organic, inorganic, and other negatives. So said, in conversations with Castaneda, Don Juan was much more forthcoming regarding Osorio, but, because of his concerns, reluctant to divulge any amount of anything regarding his real teacher --- so Castaneda simply meshed the two together.

FOOTNOTE [4]: XOXONAPO. Possibly also Xoxopanxoco Roughly, in translation, an old person ready for death, senile. Specifically, The Death-Defier, as described by Carlos Castaneda and rendered in the masculine in Spanish by Castaneda as el desafiante de la muerte. Also sometimes, The Tenant, rendered in the masculine in Spanish as el inquilino. However, Amy Wallace, in her book Sorcerer's Apprentice (2003) writes that the Death Defiers name Xoxonapo, AKA: Xoxopanxoco, means "fruit of eternal spring" in Nahuatl, a southern UtoAztecan language. John Bierhorst, a recognized expert in Aztec language and literature, lists the word Xoxo:pan, (freq. of xopan), in translation as "in summer, every summer" and freely, "in sping" (when referring to new growth). He cites as an example:

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Xoxo:pan xihuitl i:pan tochi:huaco[h] = we come to do as herbs in spring. Xo:pan is green place, green time (i.e., spring), as opposed to the dry season. Xo:tl means green, x:o:co means "by means of green." For me there isn't really too much difference in translation. For a person "ready for death," actual death could be the FRUIT of "eternal spring." As applied, Xoxonapo Xoxopanxoco appears to be more of an oxymoron, as the Death Defier seemed to strive toward life at all costs rather than seek the FRUIT of eternal spring --- which I translate as death.

My uncle died in 1989. The Wallace book was published in 2003. The discussion regarding the cave with my uncle as outlined in Footnote [2]transpired sometime well before either of those two years. During that discussion I tried to entice him to repeat for me what he had said that night outside the cave, verbatim, in whatever language it was, then translate into English the actual indepth meaning behind the words. He told me it ended that night in front of the cave and not to concern myself. However, he refused to say the Defier's name out loud intimating that he, my uncle -- and I quote --- "did not want to be found." According to Wallace, as told to her by a Castaneda confidant, by invoking the Death Defier's name inTula, that is Nahuatl, the Defier's spirit will awaken. I am not sure how accurate all that is. My uncle told me it ENDED that night in front of the cave, yet he was hesitant to the point that he refused to verbalize the Defier's name out loud. If it ended, then what's the problem --- unless there is more than just one Death Defier. And if there is, why would invoking one Defier's name awaken the spirit of another, especially to the point you could be found? The major problem I have with the whole Death Defier situation is a personal one and goes back to those Friday night after work artist meetings described at the bottom of DON JUAN MATUS: Real or Imagined? and the full page CARLOS CASTANEDA: Before Don Juan. Those artist get togethers happened over a period of time before Carlos Castaneda, who was a regular participant at those meetings, ever heard of or thought of Don Juan Matus. However, at those meetings, on a minimum of two occasions, I either mentioned or told the cave story in an almost fully unabbreviated fashion as I have presented it above. I am certain Castaneda was in attendance for at least one, possibly both of those unabbreviated times. At that, the only reason I bring it up is because in Castaneda's eighth book Power of Silence (1988) in the section entitledTHE MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SPIRIT: The First Abstract Core he describes, at least up to the appearance of the emaciated man, an almost exact scenario --- carved out cave and all --- that transpired between himself and Don Juan. So, what am I saying, that Castaneda copied my story? Could be. Or it could be, unrelated to anything I said, that he himself was taken to one of the three seasonal
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caves by Don Juan Matus or the old man or both. So too, although such an occurrence seems to be highly remote, he could have, after hearing the story and getting wrapped up in the various events as they unfolded, searched until he found one of the caves or someone who could take him there.

As to the emaciated man disappearing with a teardrop shape of what could only be called a pool of grease leading into the cave remaining, Castaneda, talking with an old Indian man regarding diableros and if any are left is told by the old man:

He killed dozens- maybe even hundreds of people with his sorcery. We couldn't put up with that and the people got together and took him by surprise one night and burned him alive." "How long ago was that?" "In nineteen forty-two." (i.e., the year 1942) "Did you see it yourself?" "No, but people still talk about it. They say that there were no ashes left even though the stake was made of fresh wood. All that was left at the end was a huge pool of grease." (source)

Pool of grease or no, there was neither fire nor wooden stake involved in the confrontation between my uncle and the creature that night. Although the grease pool was outside the opening of the cave following the incident initially, within seconds it evaporated, soaked into the hard rock surface, or simlpy disappeared altogether. However, in the instant before I covered my eyes and hit with the peasant clothes, I am sure, like the ability of the witch-like shaman sorceress 'la Catalina' I saw a large wisp of smoke disappating against the darkened starlit sky similar as in the event written about 'la Catalina' below. My uncle stated he himself observed no such phenomenon outside the cave that night:

"Looking toward the woman across the fire after Castaneda handed her the book, he caught a glimpse of her dark silhouette between the flames rising superimposed against the twilight sky, and then almost in a wisp of smoke the blackened silhouette seemed to sail through the air beyond view in the darkness."

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In Castaneda's third book, Journey to Ixtlan, in the section titled A Worthy Opponent dated Tuesday, December 11, 1962, Castaneda writes of 'la Catalina' not unlilke the creature at the cave, having a similar ability as the woman at the firepit. Castanteda says:

"I kept my eyes glued to that spot and suddenly, as if in a nightmare, a dark shadow leaped at me. I shrieked and fell down to the ground on my back. For a moment the dark silhouette was superimposed against the dark blue sky and then it sailed through the air and landed beyond us, in the bushes. I heard the sound of a heavy body crashing into the shrubs and then an eerie outcry." The Informant and Carlos Castaneda

the Wanderling

Deep in the desert southwest, before Carlos Castaneda met the Shaman-sorcerer that became famous in his series of Don Juan books, Castaneda had a chance encounter with a somewhat mysterious hallucinogenic bio-searcher and mushroom hunter from the Taos, Santa Fe, New Mexico area. It has been chronicled that the bio-searcher, known only as the informant in various Castaneda writings, some written by Castaneda himself, some by others, and some even written by those not always sympathetic toward Castaneda, agree for the most part --- unsympathetic or not --- that the informant was the actual person that FIRST introduced Castaneda to the rituals and use of medicinal plants.

Shortly after that encounter with the mysterious informant, for the first time ever, Castaneda reportedly crossed paths with the nearly white-haired Yaqui Indian called Don Juan Matus in a Greyhound bus station in Nogales, Arizona. Castaneda, who had been taken to the bus station by a onetime pothunter turned reputable archeaologist that Castaneda sometimes refers to as Bill in his writings and sometimes leaves unnamed, told Castaneda that the "old man" sitting across the room was an expert on medicinal plants and such, not unlike the informant. Unbeknownst to Castaneda at the time, Don Juan was also a powerful Shaman151

sorcerer who had learned his art from a Diablero, a sorcerer with evil powers said to have the ability to shape shift. Only a few weeks or possibly even just days earlier than the bus station encounter, the informant, cloaked by shimmering desert heat waves, simply seemed to evaporate into the rocks and sagebrush without a trace, leaving Castaneda without a source. To continue what he was searching for he was thankful for the old man in the bus station. After several meetings along isolated sections of the desert border, Don Juan revealed to Castaneda that he was indeed a sorcerer. The following year, according to Castaneda, he became Don Juan's apprentice, an arrangement that continued from 1961 to the Autumn of 1965. During those years, under the direct tutelage of Don Juan, Castaneda used various amounts and types of hallucinogenic herbs and medicinal plants to enlarge his vision of reality. His experiences were the basis of his first book,THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge, published by the University of California Press (1968). However, again, regardless of what may or may not have blossomed between Castaneda and the person he calls Don Juan Matus following the meeting in the bus station, as stated above, initially it was the mysterious bio-searcher dubbed the informant that FIRST introduced Castaneda to the actual use and rituals of medicinal plants.

Now, if you have read anything at all about Castaneda, it basically goes without saying that there is a significant amount of controversy surrounding the question as to whether Don Juan Matus was an actual person or not and/or if Castaneda's works are fiction or not --- in whole or in part --- but such controversy remains neither here nor there for our discussion here. Even the staunchest critic against Don Juan existing, that is, if he was real or not, would not go as far to say that Castaneda wasn't. Thus said it is fairly clear in all that has been written about him that during the Spring semester of 1960, and only a scant six months prior to the time stated for that first Karma and Omen infested meeting with Don Juan in the bus station, Castaneda, as an undergraduate student at UCLA enrolled in a class called "Methods in Field Archaeology." The class was taught by Professor Clement Meighan, and was, interestingly enough, one of Castaneda's first major forays into the exploration of Shamanism. The professor told the class if any individual student interviewed a Native American as part of a mandatory paper he assigned, they would automatically receive an "A" in the course. As a result of that offer many have reported that Castaneda traveled several hours east of Los Angeles to interview tribal spiritual elders of the Cahuilla Band of Indians on the Morongo Reservation near Banning and the Agua Caliente reservation down the road near Palm Springs. It is also said he went to the Colorado River area, possibly venturing toward the Yuma, to interview Native Americans there.[1] A few years before, in the Fall of 1957, while attending classes at Los Angeles Community College, Castaneda had written a term paper on Aldous Huxley for an English class, developing in the process a strong interest in things occult after
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reading Huxleys The Doors of Perception and its account on the use of mescaline. During research and interviews for Dr. Meighan's spring semester of 1960 UCLA class he somehow began putting together bits and pieces of information from both endeavors after his curiosity was piqued from inferences that the Cahuilla and others had, albeit obscured to outsiders, of which he was one, a historical background in the use of certain native-to-the-desert, hallucinogenic plants. That led him to start making trips farther and farther into remote sections of the southwest to study the use of medicinal plants by Native Americans. On one of those excursions deep into the desert Castaneda had an encounter with a man who was also bio-searching similar plants and it was he who related the information about the plant Datura to Castaneda. The man was a somewhat mysterious bio-searcher that had several plant species named after him and who, as described below, came to be refered to in various Castaneda related writings only as the "informant." It was information garnered from those encounters with the informant that served as the major grounding point for Castaneda's 1960s Paper on Daturahe eventually turned in for his 1960 spring semester field archaeology class.[2] In the book A Magical Journey by Castaneda's ex-wife Margaret Runyan, she, writing of his 1960 paper, states Professor Meighan recalled: "Hisinformant knew a great deal about Datura, which was a drug used in initiating ceremonies by some California groups, but had presumed by me and I think most other anthropologists to have passed out of the picture 40 or 50 years ago. So he found an informant who still actually knew something about this and still had used it." Castaneda's paper, of which he handed in at the END of the spring semester 1960 for a grade and to meet the class requirement, included fairly academic references to the plants four heads, their various purposes, the roots and their significance, as well as the method of preparation, cooking and rituals involved --- all information that he supposedly learns over one full year later from Don Juan between August 23 and September 10, 1961 and describes in The Teachings of Don Juan. (A Magical Journey pp. 83-85 and 91.)[3] It may well be true that Castaneda interviewed Native Americans for parts of his paper as claimed, but his primary informant on Datura and other hallucinogenic plants was NOT one of them. As mentioned above, Castaneda was an outsider and those he interviewed were not always so forthright in what they revealed. Castaneda's information, although written as though from a field interview, and presented in 1968 in The Teachings of Don Juan almost word for word, but much more casually and not credited, was way too structured in his 1960 paper anyway --as if the information had been obtained from a formally educated academic or field research expert, which it was, rather than simply a native user or naturalist (again, please refer to Footnote [2]). True, his paper was being written for his field archaeology class, and may have been presented in a more formal format to reflect that. However, Castaneda's, as stated by the students turning papers in, was one of only three involving actual interviews of Native Americans by members of the class -- and, although an excellent paper, there was no convincing hint of actual field interviews or contact with native users at the level one would expect. Because of
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such, that is, not knowing the full circumstances surrounding how Castaneda garnered his information, his professor, although accepting Castaneda's word on what he said it was, still remained somewhat hesitant and slightly perplexed, saying, as stated previously, he and "most other anthropologists thought the use of Datura had passed out of the picture 40 or 50 years ago." Apparently by inference, assuming from extrapolation that the informant and/or informants were ALL not other than Native American, he thought it most interesting Castaneda had "found an informant who still actually knew something about this and still had used it." The UCLA spring classes Castaneda enrolled in ran roughly from sometime midJanuary to around the middle of June, 1960. His paper was due to be turned in at least by the end of that period, that is, not much later than two or three weeks into June at the most, perhaps somewhat earlier. That would mean his interviews and study of medicinal plants would need to be completed no later than the end of May, 1960. Datura is a night blooming plant. Often times for ritual or strength purposes the plants are picked or dealt with during the full moon phase. In May of that year the full moon occurred during the first third of the month, on Wednesday, May 11th and in June it was Thursday the 9th. There is a good chance Castaneda's informant was probably bio-searching around that same time in order to maximize the plant and take advantage of the moonlight. For the most part the month of May and sometimes early June are almost a perfect time in the southwestern desert, especially at night and during the early morning hours. The cold of winter has pretty much dissipated and spring is in its final throes of unflolding prior to the oncoming intense summer heat.(see) It is my contention that on a very important fact finding Road Trip, set into motion by a colleague during that period, that Castaneda and his informant met. The interesting part is the coincidence at the end of that special Road Trip of the so-called "chance" meeting between CASTANEDA and Don Juan at the Nogales Bus Station sometime in the late summer of 1960 --- which happened at the most only a few short weeks AFTER Castaneda met with his informant in the desert for the very first time. When the summer of 1960 finally rolled to an end and finding himself in a much better mood psychologically AFTER his lessons during the spring and early summer in the desert regarding the use and rituals of Datura from the informant, followed by a brief meeting with the old man in the bus station, Castaneda formally returned to the Fall of 1960 classes at UCLA. In the process of his return he wrote a paper on halluncinogenic plants for a class taught by Dr. William A. Lessa. Although Castaneda was still an undergraduate, Lessa was so favorably impressed with what Castaneda presented in his paper he requested that Castaneda give a report on his findings to his graduate-level seminar titled "Myth and Ritual."C. Scott Littleton, a now retired professor of anthropology at Occidental College, who was a graduate student of Lessa's at the time, was asked by Lessa to sit in on the seminar --- telling Littleton "he had this Peruvian guy in his class who'd collected the best information from a shaman he'd ever seen, bar none." Afterwards, taking advantage of the scheduled UCLA winter break at the completion of his Fall of 1960 classes, Castaneda left California for Arizona and Mexico searching for Don Juan, hoping for a meeting. On December 17, 1960, he eventually caught up with him at his home, their FIRST face-to-face meeting since their initial bus station
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encounter.(see) Sometime thereafter Don Juan revealed he was a Shaman-sorcerer who learned his art from a diablero. Six months later, on June 23, 1961, at the end of his spring classes of that year --- and one full year after he and Don Juan first met --- Castaneda formally began his training as a man of knowledge. It was not until August 6, 1961 that Castaneda had his first experience with any sort of psychotropic plants under Don Juan and not until September 7, 1961, before he experienced a brew concocted from Datura. What is being said here of course, is that it is quite easy to extrapolate from the dates presented and documented by Castaneda himself in his own works --- and not by an outsider or by a person with an ax to grind --that BOTH of the papers he wrote, the one for Meighan and the one for Lessa were written and turned in PRIOR to any indepth interaction or indoctrination with or by Don Juan --- and all of the information presented and said to be "the best information from a shaman ever seen, bar none" by his academic superiors came NOT from Don Juan, but from none other than the informant.

So how does all this play together, especially when in the above I present:

Both of the papers he wrote, the one for Meighan and the one for Lessa were written and turned in prior to any indepth interaction or indoctrination with or by Don Juan -- and all of the information presented and said to be "the best information from a shaman ever seen, bar none" by his academic superiors came not from Don Juan, but from none other than the informant.

While the statement is backed by facts and information that are seemingly reeking with dates and times that chafe against future events as Castaneda describes them, in the end the answer is summed up in his last published book, The Active Side of Infinity (1998) when Castaneda asks his colleague if the old man in the bus station is the Cloud Shaman and the colleague tells Castaneda:

"No. But I think he is a companion or a teacher of the Cloud Shaman. I saw both of them together in the distance various times, many years ago."

Castaneda and his anthropologist colleague Bill, after traveling weeks on end throughout Arizona and New Mexico including having met theinformant along the way, ended up at the bus station in Nogales, either through a carefully concocted minipulation of known or upcoming events or simple predestination, vis-a'-vis with those forces. The colleague, upon seeing the old man sitting on the bench by
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the corner in the bus station, suddenly remembers seeing the old man --- whether it
is Don Juan Matus or not --- and the Cloud Shaman in the distance various times many years ago, and instantly realizes that the Cloud Shaman he saw with the old man AND the bio-searcher (that is, the informant) are one and the same person.

What has been presented by Castaneda all along the way in his many books and interviews stemming from his ever important and crucial firstIntroduction Scene in the bus station between he and Don Juan, a meeting that lasted no more than only a very few minutes at the most, was simply based on Castaneda NOT interpreting correctly (for the readers) what he saw in the first place. What he thought he saw and took as the truth was inaccurate and he compounded the whole thing to his readers throughout his writings because of that misinterpretation. While the conversation regarding the Cloud Shaman no doubt occurred in the bus station initially, and the Cloud Shaman was actually a MAJOR player in the scheme of things, Castaneda simply left it out of his first book not bothering to bring it up until his last book. Why? Because the Cloud Shaman undermines Don Juan Matus as he is written. While it is accurate to say that the Cloud Shaman and the old man are companions or friends (i.e., "No. But I think he is a companion or a teacher of the Cloud Shaman...") in reality he (the old man) is in NO WAY a teacher of the Cloud Shaman. If anything, at the very most, both the old man (if you take the old man to be Don Juan Matus or not) and the Cloud Shaman have the SAMEteacher --- or to be even more accurate, and the secret to all of Castaneda's writings --- Don Juan's own unknown, unheralded, diablero real life teacher and the Cloud Shaman, that is, the informant, were actually peers or equals. What Castaneda learned from the informant was the SAMEas having learned it directly from Don Juan's teacher, the same original grounding source Don Juan would have learned it from --- and why he wrote it the way he did --- albeit giving credit to Don Juan. If you remember correctly, at the time of the bus station encounter Don Juan wasn't even really Don Juan --- and why I have overly emphasized theif in "IF you take him (the old man) to BE Don Juan Matus," above. Reading Castaneda's works it is easy to see it is a given Bill did not seem to think so, and at the time of the bus station encounter, neither did Castaneda. So the question is, why should anybody else? In A Separate Reality(1971) Castaneda writes:

Bill said convincingly that he had encountered people like him before, people who gave the impression of knowing a great deal. In his judgment, he said, such people were not worth the trouble, because sooner or later one could obtain the same information from someone else who did not play hard to get. He said that he had neither patience nor time for old fogies, and that it was possible that the old man was only presenting himself as being knowledgeable about herbs, when in reality he knew as little as the next man.

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It should be said here, in a quick side note regarding Don Juan, the old man in the bus station, et al, although the possibility exists otherwise, and even though I hint above that the whole bus station meeting could have possibly been orchestrated by a series of carefully concocted minipulation of known or upcoming events, there is nothing in what I know personally or on a first hand basis about the informant that would indicate he knew, met, set the meeting, ever heard of Don Juan --- or knew if he was an actual person or not.[4]

Taking a cue from such hints as presented previously, anthropologist Jay Courtney Fikes in his book Carlos Castaneda, Academic Opportunism and the Psychedelic Sixties (1993) suggests that rather than being one individual, the chance exists that Don Juan was actually a composite of two or possibly even three authentic Indian shamans, of which one was the Mazatec curandera Maria Sabina, with another being the venerated Cahuilla Shaman, Salvador Lopez, albeit not mentioned by Fikes in his book, but by others.[5] The informant knew Maria Sabina and knew her quite well. I think that during the informant's discussion of plants and herbs sitting around in the middle of the night in some shabby motel, isolated shack, or rock-ring campfire in the desert someplace, Maria Sabina's name came up and may have had an impact on Castaneda. Again, if Don Juan was an actual person, a composite of several people, a total fabrication or a figment of Castaneda's imagination, the events leading up to meeting Don Juan and the various interactions with people, places, and things don't necessarily have to be discarded. Then again, if the informant was used as a model by Castaneda for Don Juan, or if aspects of his manners or abilities seeped into the characterization of Don Juan, I can't really say as he was neither Yaqui, Native American, MexicanIndian nor Mesoamerican or Hispanic. Except for a possible hint in the closing paragraph of Cloud Shaman, relating to the fact cited above where the informant "cloaked by shimmering desert heat waves, simply seemed to evaporate into the rocks and sagebrush without a trace," it was never made clear to me specifically if he himself was a Shaman.[6] In later years I may of had my suspicions, but in his own actions he always ensured that nothing fell into an area or realm that might frighten or compromise any belief a person held in the natural order of things. He was simply a person in search of the truth and tried honorably to convey that truth once discovered.

Even though Bill told Castaneda convincingly that the old man in the bus station "knew as little as the next man" Castaneda NEEDED someone that would stand up to a closer scrutiny of what a shaman should be than what the informant was, i.e., he was neither Yaqui, Native American, Mexican-Indian, nor Mesoamerican or Hispanic. What better than an old man who was apparently a Yaqui Indian from

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Sonora, Mexico. In his third book of the series, Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Castaneda writes:

I prepared myself for six months, after that first meeting, reading up on the uses of peyote among the American Indians, especially about the peyote cult of the Indians of the Plains. I became acquainted with every work available, and when I felt I was ready I went back to Arizona.(see)

The "after that first meeting" in the above refers to Castaneda and the old man in the bus station and their very first encounter some say was sometime in early June of 1960 but actually unfolded more toward the end of the summer of 1960 --- a meeting, by the way, that lasted no more than 15 minutes at the very most.[7] Then, still in his third book, citing the date Saturday, December 17, 1960, after allowing nearly six months to lapse without ever seeing or talking with Don Juan, refering to their second meeting, Castaneda writes:

I found his house after making long and taxing inquiries among the local Indians. It was early afternoon when I arrived and parked in front of it. I saw him sitting on a wooden milk crate. He seemed to recognize me and greeted me as I got out of my car.

The six month period that Castaneda prepared himself was of course, the Fall semester of 1960, during of which he wrote, completed, and turned in the paper to Lessa as well as presented in Lessa's graduate level seminar --- garnering the comment in the process that what Castaneda hadwas "the best information from a shaman he (Lessa) had ever seen, bar none." During the semester PRIOR, to Lessa's, that is, the Spring semester of 1960 and BEFORE he ever met Don Juan Matus those couple of minutes in the bus station, or, as found in Footnote [1] ANY Cahuilla Shaman on any Morongo Indian Reservation, Castaneda had already turned in his paper to Meighan on Sacred Datura --- a paper that was filled with all the same information about the plant and various rituals that he supposedly learns later from Don Juan between August 23 and September 10, 1961 --- all of which in both cases he had learned previously from the informant while on the Road Trip.[8]

NOTE: If you have not read the footnotes, please scroll down toward the bottom of the page.
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As you scroll down the page you will also see sources listed to back-up the overall thesis as presented. For those who may be so interested, it should be noted as well that a great deal of what is presented, and the essence of it all that has been weaved through the totality of the page emanates from the results of firsthand knowledge gained through a rather lengthy personal interview I conducted between myself and ProfessorClement Meighan as found in Castaneda's 1960s Paper on Datura. FOOTNOTE [2] Toward the end of his series of Don Juan books, Castaneda writes in The Active Side of Infinity, that while in Arizona during the late Spring of 1960 "he met with an extremely seasoned anthropologist" --- not the informant --- but thought possibly to be Edward H. Spicer, who had written and published a great deal on both the Yaqui Indians of Arizona and those of Sonora, Mexico. Castaneda, a Peruvian, was told "that the Indian societies of the Southwest were extremely isolationist, and that foreigners, especially those of Hispanic origin, were distrusted, even abhorred, by those Indians." Interestingly enough, on the use of Datura, Spicer is on record as saying "I know of no information or reference concerning Yaquis using Datura" which, if so and if correct AND if the "Indian societies of the Southwest" typically blocked the flow of any meaningful information to outsiders as stated, it only underlines and strengthens the Wanderling's thesis that the knowledge of 'how to use and rituals of Datura' as coming from another source, most notably the informant. Other than Spicer two others that have been mentioned who could have been one of the "extremely seasoned anthropologists" offering Castaneda advice are Dr. W. Curry Holden and Dr. William A. Lessa. Interestingly enough, both are Williams, thus then possibly Billas in Castaneda's Road Trip colleage Bill. Lessa however, although obliquely influential in Castaneda's early rise, was neither Yaqui scholar nor known to have any substantial interest as a "southwest" field type. Holden, on the other hand, is somewhat different. He was both a Yaqui scholar of some repute and known to be a field expert in the southwest --- albeit one that became somewhat notorious in his later years as it came out for having led a group of students on one specific field exercise in the summer of 1947. According toROSWELL ARCHAEOLOGIST: The Dirt Before The Dig and other sources such as author Thomas J. Carey, Holden inadvertently stumbled across the wreckage of a mysterious craft of an unknown nature that slammed into the lower north slope of the Capitan Mountains outside of Roswell Crash, New Mexico. The craft was considered by many to have been of extraterrestrial in origin. Holden never really discussed the incident and it was well into his later years before he was actually even inteviewed on the subject. In a quick note, Holden's archaeologist daughter, Jane (Holden) Kelley, was age 32 in 1960. Like her father she became an expert in the Yaqui Indians of Sonora and scholar in her own right. Although it was not unusual to find her traveling with her father, or possibly even operating in the same broad general area on her own, from the tempo and flow of Castaneda's writing she can pretty well be eliminated as a
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candidate for one of the "extremely seasoned anthropologists." Regarding the Roswell Incident and the so-calledRoswell UFO, the daughter is on record as saying that at the time interviews were being conducted, because of his age, her father was easily confused. Memories from his life were jumbled and reordered, and, even though she and her dad were close, he had never mentioned it. Another colleague told Castaneda he was better off reading herbalists' books. It was his opinion "that anything to be known about medicinal plants from the Southwest had already been classified and talked about in various publications. He went as far as to say thatthe sources of any Indian curer of the day were precisely THOSE exact same publications rather than any traditional knowledge. He finished off with the assertion that if there still were any traditional curing practices, the Indians would not divulge them to a stranger." Castaneda, who most likely at the time was not at peer level and not seen or perceived as much more than a LOWLY undergraduate student by "those experienced social scientists," felt there was nothing left to do except take their seasoned advice and leave Arizona for Los Angeles. However, at the last minute a not nearly so high ranking working stiff and seat-of-the-pants ground-pounder, versed in four-field anthropology (Ethnology, Archeology, Linguistic and Biological) -- and eventually to be camouflaged by Castaneda in the narrative by using only his first name Bill for unknown reasons, told Castaneda he intended to go on a Road Trip and drive throughout Arizona and New Mexico revisiting "all the places where he had done work in the past, renewing in this fashion his relationships with the people (Native American or otherwise) who had been his anthropological informants," telling Castaneda: "You're welcome to come with me," he said. "I'm not going to do any work. I'm just going to visit with them, have a few drinks with them, bullshit with them. I bought gifts for them-blankets, booze, jackets, ammunition for twenty-two-caliber rifles. My car is loaded with goodies. I usually drive alone whenever I go to see them, but by myself I always run the risk of falling asleep. You could keep me company, keep me from dozing off, or drive a little bit if I'm too drunk."

Portending an Omen like sense of the future, thus pushing aside surface concerns, in The Active Side of Infinity, Castaneda writes:

"Disregarding my feelings of defeat, I started on a journey with him."

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Somewhere along the way during Castaneda's weeks-into-months long zig-zaging across the desert-southwest road trip with Bill, however AFTER his encounter with the informant but BEFORE the bus station encounter, Castaneda crossed paths with the so-called colleague who had told him somewhat earlier that he was better off reading herbalists' books than concentrating on field research. Learning that the herbalist colleague was making a quick couple days roundtrip trip to Los Angeles, Castaneda convinced the colleague that he, Castaneda, had now, since their discussion, developed all honorable intentions of implementing his suggestions into doing nothing but library research on traditional curing instead of wasting any future time on field research. However, he told the herbalist colleague that in order to do so he would have to maintain a continued clear and unqualified enrollment at UCLA. For that to transpire, he told the colleague, would require him, Castaneda, to turn in all of his current field research papers and other classwork to the proper professors in an orderly and timely fashion prior to the end of the spring semester. Since the timing was right, the herbalist colleague, not grasping Castaneda's semi-deceitful stretching of the truth in regards to library research, but instead, only impressed with Castaneda's willingness to take his suggestions to heart, was more than happy ensure just such a thing would happen. Now, if Castaneda returned personally to UCLA with his herbalist colleague on a couple day turn around and took care of business himself, OR, if the colleague dealt with it for him is not known (see below) --- it is known that Castaneda, gone two days or not, completed the Road Trip that eventually ended in Nogales towards the end of summer 1960 and he DID continue at UCLA --- albeit participating in field research and in doing so, eventually receiving a PhD. AND NOW THIS: Sometime in the mid to late 1960s, while staying a couple of days at the mining camp of an old Mojave Desert prospector friend of my father's named Walt Bickel, I was introduced to a man named Alex Apostolides. In those days Apostolides was doing a variety archaeological surveys and said to be a Field Director in archaeology for UCLA. In a general small talk sort of way I told him I knew a one-time undergraduate student at UCLA named Carlos Castaneda that had been doing field work in Arizona back in the early 60s. I also mentioned the last time I had seen him was in a bus station in Nogales at the end of the summer of 1960. Apostolides, although he got to know Castaneda better later, didn't know him well in the early 1960s period I was talking about. But he did tell me he had seen Castaneda at UCLA and actually met him for the first time just around that same time. He remembered it well because of the circumstances. Apostolides said he had gone to UCLA near the end of the semester for one reason or the other that he couldn't recall and Castaneda was either in the department office or going to or from a professor's office turning in papers when he bumped into him. The reason he remembers it so well is because Castaneda was traveling with a teacher's assistant and that the T.A., who Apostolides knew had a reputation for hating field work, told him that the two of them had just returned from participating in a dig in Arizona and, not only that, but
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the two of them would be going back in a couple of days to help shut down the dig for the summer. Apostolides said at the time of that first meeting Castaneda was not, of course, the Castaneda people would eventually come to know. As a matter of fact, Apostolides related that their first meeting, in regards to Castaneda himself, that he was not very memorable at all. He said so because one day, two or three years after that meeting, basically out of the nowhere, Castaneda stepped up to him as though they were life long friends and it actually took Apostolides a few minutes to put together how they even knew each other. The main thrust of their first meeting was because Castaneda just happened to be traveling with the teaching assistant that day. Apostolides said he remembered the T.A. alright, and thus then eventually Castaneda. The T.A. told Apostolides that the two of them were on some archaeological dig in Arizona and that he, the T.A., "was running out of time academically" and was down there on "loan" to another professor from another university to pad his resume' with field work experience on UCLA's dime. For more on Alex Apostolides and any relation he may of or not had with Castaneda please see The Tree.

SOURCE FOR SOME OF THE ABOVE: THE ACTIVE SIDE OF INFINITY Carlos Castaneda Hardback, 272 pages Published by Harpercollins Publication date: January 1999 ISBN: 0060192208 FOOTNOTE [4] In The Informant and Carlos Castaneda, above, the following is written by the Wanderling:

"Although the possibility exists otherwise, there is nothing in what I know personally or on a first hand basis about theinformant that would indicate he knew, met, set the meeting, ever heard of Don Juan --- or knew if he was an actual person or not."

As stated above and clarified more thoroughly in the section on Cloud Shamans, Castaneda's colleague, having met the informant while traveling with Castaneda on
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their Road Trip throughout Arizona and New Mexico, states, upon seeing the "old man" in the bus station, that he remembers seeing both of them TOGETHER (that is, the "old man," whether it is Don Juan Matus or not, and the Cloud Shaman) in the distance various times many years ago. From that recollection the colleague suddenly realizes that the Cloud Shaman he saw with the "old man" AND the biosearcher (that is, the informant) are one and the same person. In a quick overview there may seem to be a contradiction in information between the two sources. However, the key here is in the Wanderling's statement: "there is nothing in what I know personally or on a first hand basis". What is being said here is, even though the colleague may know that the Cloud Shaman and the informant are one and the same person and that the Cloud Shaman knew the "old man" (again, whether is Don Juan Matus or not), the Wanderling DOES NOT know it on a first hand basis himself. That is to say, even though his uncle may have told him he knew Carlos Castaneda he never told him, nor did it ever come up, that he knew, met, or heard of Don Juan Matus --- which doesn't necessarily mean he didn't, only that he never told the Wanderling he did, nor was it the case that the Wanderling was ever witness to such a fact. However, in that Castaneda's colleague Bill and the informant knew each other all along AND the informant knew the "old man" and of his shaman-sorcerer background --- because the two of them had studied under the same teacher at one time --- strong indications stemming from deep personal suspicions by the Wanderling point to the fact that the informant actually orchestrated or choreographed the whole bus station meeting. The colleague says the "old man" and the Cloud Shaman knew each other. He also says the Cloud Shaman and the informant are one and the same person, AND it is known that "one person" is the Wanderling's Uncle. Castaneda says the "old man" he met in the bus station IS Don Juan Matus, which if so, would imply by default then that the Wanderling's uncle knew Don Juan Matus. The clinker is that Castaneda is the ONLY one out of everybody or anybody involved that seems to know or says the "old man" in the bus station is or turned out to be, Don Juan Matus. By the time the Wanderling reached his teenage years he had already begun study under his spiritual guide and Mentor and no longer under the auspices of his uncle. It was during those teenage years, when the Wanderling and his uncle were separated, that his uncle crossed paths with Carlos Castaneda. It was only in passing conversation many, many years later that the Wanderling came to realize the importance of the time spent with his uncle, the knowledge he held, and where it led to. You have to remember that during the period Castaneda was interviewing the Wanderling's uncle regarding Sacred Datura and other medicinal plants Castaneda was an undergraduate student carrying with him all the baggage of an unassured novitate. The Wanderling's uncle was always running into people that sought various amounts of information from him about natural desert plants and any effect they may have. Castaneda was just another in a long line of seekers and wasn't particularly memorable except for, in retrospect, a certain amount of persistance. Not to undercut Castaneda, but the Wanderling's uncle was surprised --- as well as pleased to a certain extent --- to find out THAT specific person who had tramped
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around the desert with him all those days and nights and arranged to eventually hook-up with the "old man," achieved the level of success he did and that he actually became "somebody." To his knowledge nobody he had ever come into contact in the past had. His uncle was glad, regardless of how Castaneda may have presented it in his books and the public, that at least some or part of the information and knowledge he carried with him was not going to be simply lost forever to the winds and the rocks and sand of the desert. When his father and Stepmother divorced the Wanderling was living in a foster home. By high school, AFTER a previously arranged summer of traveling with his uncle, he ended up living with his grandmother in a southern California beach community.(see) Except for the aforementioned short summer interlude his uncle had long returned to the Santa Fe, Taos area. The Wanderling went from a pre-teen to a job to having been in and out of the Army. Eighteen years passed. Then one day late in 1968 his uncle called saying he needed his help. They met in Kingman, Arizona. His uncle gave him a small taped up cardboard box six or eight inches square and told him to deliver it in person and only in person to a man in Laguna Beach, California --- and whatever he did, NOT give it to anybody else under any circumstances. When the Wanderling arrived in Laguna Beach to deliver the package he found the man sequestered in a remote cave hidden in the hills above Laguna Canyon Road. The man, Dr. Timothy Leary. The contents of the box not known. For the Wanderling the importance of the meeting in Kingman had nothing to do with the fact that it involved Timothy Leary in any way, but that the meeting eventually rekindled his relationship with his uncle. However, as the years passed, before every bit of information could be garnered the Wanderling's uncle died after being medi-vacked back to the United States from South America. He had been on an extended trip exploring the Vortexes at Machu Picchu high in the Andes then bio-searching the banisteriopsis caapi vine associated with the Ayahuasca Sorcerer's Brew along the upper reaches of the Amazon when he broke his leg. A combination of age and a weakening immune system caused from complications of that break, cancer infiltrated his body ending his life two years later at age eighty-six. (see) Between the time of the meeting in Kingman and the death of the Wanderling's uncle a number of other meetings occurred. At one of those meetings Castaneda's colleague Bill, that is William Lawrence Campbell, was in attendance. At that meeting Campbell discussed his relationship with Castaneda, how they met, the Nogales bus station where Castaneda met Don Juan for the first time, etc. (see) You must remember we may be dealing with two totally different people here. Castaneda's colleague Bill was never in the picture after the bus station encounter --and neither was anybody else for that matter --- so there is no one or no way to confirm if the "old man" that both the informant knew and Bill saw and Castaneda met at the end of the summer of 1960 in the Nogales bus station AND the person he
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met up with in Yuma in December of 1960 and called Don Juan Matus are actually the same person. The closing half of JULIAN OSORIO: Don Juan's Teacher explores just such a scenario as does The Old Man In the Desert. FOOTNOTE [6] In The Informant and Carlos Castaneda, above, the following is written by the Wanderling:

"Except for a possible hint in the closing paragraph of Cloud Shaman, relating to the fact cited above where the informant"cloaked by shimmering desert heat waves, simply seemed to evaporate into the rocks and sagebrush without a trace," it was never made clear to me specifically if he himself was a Shaman."

Again, as with Footnote [3], in a quick overview there may seem to be a contradiction in information between two sources. As found in the Roswell Incident Updated the Wanderling as a ten-year old boy is traveling with his uncle. His uncle is called in by the eminent meteorite hunter Dr. Lincoln La Paz to assist in determining the trajectory of the mysterious object said to have crashed in the Capitan Mountains near Roswell, New Mexico. The Wanderling, while busying himself looking for horn toads and lizards in the surrounding scrub brush and sandy terrain as well as breaking up rocks for the first time with a newly aquired prospector's pick, comes across a few pieces of some foil-like material.(see) The military person in charge quickly gathers up the pieces and, in a rather harsh and abrupt fashion, orders the Wanderling and his uncle back to the vehicle they arrived in, placing them under guard with orders not to let them leave. When the military person returns to the truck he finds the Wanderling and his uncle gone, and the guard assigned to watch them having no clue where they went or what happened to them. A search of the area shows no sign of either anywhere in the vicinity, as though they simply disappeared or vanished, the desert and the surrounding environment somehow swallowing them up without a trace. (source) The seeming contradiction arises in the last part of the quote above: "...it was never made clear to me specifically if he himself was a Shaman." Now, how could the Wanderling just disappear with his uncle and not know it. That is where a great deal about Shamanism is missed by the non-Shaman. To the OUTSIDE OBSERVER both seemed to have just vanished, however to themselves everything was normal. The Wanderling walking with his uncle wasn't aware of any difference. His uncle may have been fully aware of the situation, but for the Wanderling, not versed in such things, just went along with his uncle enveloped by the circumstances. The only difference, still recalled very vividly, was that the distance they traveled by vehicle that day to the fused glass site was quite far and took quite a long time, however the trip walking back across the desert on foot took only a short time. As a young boy
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the Wanderling never really thought much about the time-distance difference one way or the other, as a grown man it is another matter. Interestingly enough, some one hundred years before the above Roswell incident transpired with the boy and his uncle, a highly similar event was recorded involving a venerated Indian holy man and saint, Swami Ramalinga Swamigal, popularly known as Vallalar, and some of his devotees. One day, while in Madras, the Swami along with several devotees and disciples, were walking to Tiruvottiyur inorder to worship at the Ishwara temple. During the journey he and his party got caught in an exceptionally heavy downpour, all in the group suffering much difficulty because of the sudden flooding and rushing water. The Swami showed them a shortcut and in an instant they reached Tiruvottiyur. T.V.G. Chetty, in the book Life of Swami Ramalingam, describes the incident as follows:

They had reached half the way to Tiruvottiyur. There was heavy rain. His followers began to run pell-mell. But the Swami "rallied them all together and darted through some mysterious bye-lane" and got the entire body in front of the temple in a second of time.

Chetty goes on to write:

The above incident seems to be a case of collective dematerialisation and materialisation, that is to say the Swami took them within his subtle-physical body or possibly enveloped them in his environmental body which is its extension and reached the destination instantly and projected them out again. His devotees should have felt the whole process as going through a mysterious way and reaching the temple in an instant.

See Apportation as well as Chalabhinna the sixfold knowledge of the worthy ones. See also At the Feet of the Bhagavan and the final paragraphs of The Sun Dagger. FOOTNOTE [3] There is more on this further on, but quickly for now, the UCLA spring classes Castaneda enrolled in ran roughly from sometime mid-January to at the most the middle of June, 1960. His paper was due to be turned in before the end of that period, that is, not much later than two or three weeks into June at the most,
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perhaps somewhat earlier. In other words, the spring semester ended basically just at the start of the summer of 1960. It was the summer of 1960 Castaneda met Don Juan Matus at the bus station and AFTER he had already turned in his paper on datura. That initial encounter with Don Juan at the bus station lasted less than 15 minutes. After that a full six months elapsed before they saw each other again in December of 1960.(see)

Continuing, in a quote by UCLA Professor Clement Meighan in the above main text, the following is written:

"His informant knew a great deal about Datura, which was a drug used in initiating ceremonies by some California groups, but had presumed by me and I think most other anthropologists to have passed out of the picture 40 or 50 years ago."

Carlos Castaneda wrote that he learned about Datura from his informant. There is no conflict or disagreement with that thesis UNTIL he frames his idea around the fact that the informant who taught him about Datura WAS Don Juan Matus. Don Juan Matus, real or imagined, may have been or become Castaneda's informant in Castaneda's books, but initially it was the bio-searcher that instructed him in the preparation and uses of all parts of the plant, roots, leaves, flowers and seeds. Castaneda also claims it was Don Juan that first taught him how to approach the plant properly and how to ask permission from the plant-spirit before digging it up. He writes his informant was very particular about these details and instructed Castaneda to never use an iron or metal tool when digging up Datura. He was told to use only a branch from a tree-friend of the plant in order to ensure that the plant would not be unduly hurt and be more likely to act beneficially and friendly during any subsequent encounter. As well Castaneda writes that Don Juan taught him the secrets of a lizard ritual in which the use of Datura plays a central role. According to Castaneda, under Don Juan's instructions two lizards are caught with no equipment or traps. The fiber of a century plant and thorn of a prickly pear is used to sew shut the eyes of one lizard and the mouth of the other. While under the influence of Datura the diviner asks the lizards to help find the answer to his question. One reptile is sent away to search for clues while the other remains sitting on the shoulder of the diviner, whispering into his ear all that the other lizard is seeing and experiencing. All the details about how to dig up plants --- not using a metal tool, using branches from tree-friends of the plant, and even apologizing to the plant-spirit every time for taking them and assuring them that someday the diviner's own body will serve as food for them "so, all in all, the plants and ourselves are even" --- are all things my
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uncle taught me. The taboo surrounding the use of iron or metal tools when digging up medicinal or spiritual plants is encountered frequently with magical and medicinal plants. The sacredness of the custom dates way back, to an extremely ancient use of the plant --- well before the first iron or metal tools were ever cast or made. That and the rest of the plant rituals were told me by my uncle almost verbatim as a kid while hunting mushrooms and medicinal plants under his auspices in the High Sierras and the desert southwest --- all things in Castaneda's 1960s that were thought "to have passed out of the picture 40 or 50 years ago." The lizard ritual is TOTALLY another thing --- something of which I question the validity of --- for two reasons. First, none of it is approached in the text as being much more than an ordinary exercise, in line with grinding seeds or collecting plants. Castaneda basically accomplished the whole thing with little or no trouble --- under the darkening sky of the twilight hours and never having done it before. In real life it is questionable that a neophyte anthropology student from UCLA would have the knowledge or refined expertise to turn cactus fiber into thread, a thorn into a needle, or able to hold two lizards still while stitching their eyelids and lips shut. Some say it was easily accomplished by Castaneda because he was on his way to being a sorcerer. However, previous encounters had been under outside influence. Castaneda had been without drugs over three months --- fifteen weeks --- so it was not even a hallucination. Secondly, as it relates to my own case, I can draw an inference from a highly personal experience that transpired before I even reached my teen years. My uncle had taken me to a sacred Native American site called Fajada Butte that, for reasons unclear to me at the time, he had cause to ascend. As a ten year old boy with no mountain climbing skills I was somewhat apprehensive to ascend the mountain either by unmarked trail or scale the straight up 400 foot cliff walls of the butte. The two of us were traveling with a local tribal spiritual elder my uncle was somehow associated with that had been waiting for us two days before at some nearby ruins. The tribal elder, sensing my apprehension, under the gaze of the rising full moon went into the desert to obtain something he thought might help. The following is presented in The Sun Dagger outlining what happened:

"When he returned he had some plants with him he said warriors used sometimes before going into battle in order to make them strong and brave, and if I used some I would be strong and brave too, inturn alleviating any concern about making my way to the top of the butte. As my uncle nodded an approval, I did as prescribed under the direction of the tribal elder. Then I was told to lay down and rest as there was a difficult trip before us." "At sunrise my uncle shook me awake and said he and his friend would be gone for a while and not to leave, telling me there was food and water in the corner if I wanted it. I rolled back over thinking I would go back to sleep when it dawned on me my uncle had said "corner." When I sat up I could see I was in some sort of a room.

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Actually, it was more of a "some sort of ruin" barely stuck on a ledge on the side of the butte hundreds and hundreds of feet above the valley floor."

I had no clue how I got there. The day passed, darkness slowly came across the desert and the temperature began to drop. My uncle's friend gave me more of the plants in the same manner as the previous night, then I curled up and fell asleep. I woke up the next morning in the cab of the truck parked in the ruins northwest of the the butte we started from. As we were leaving I turned to the man and asked how all this happened and he responded by saying something in his native tongue. I asked my uncle what the man had said and he told me it translated into something like, "Eagles don't climb, they fly." Years later my uncle all but cetified that the plants used by the tribal elder that night was Sacred Datura. However, all the rituals were done by the elder, and for the magic of the plant to unfold, which apparently it must have as I ended up on the butte, required nothing remotely close to the use of a lizard or any other animal in any fashion --- nor since then in any similar situation have I ever observed such a ritual or the need for such a ritual. Although Jane Holden Kelley, for example, would most likely disagree, it is my opinion that Castaneda was concerned, and perhaps ONLY SO early on, that through his books he was in effect promoting and sanctioning the use of a dangerous hallucinogenic and potentially toxic drug, information that might reach a wide audience and cause harm if consumed or used in quanities unmetered by someone not versed in their safe administration. By introducing an amost impossible ritual to accomplish, that had to be done in conjunction with the use of the drug if expected results were to be forthcoming, he created a scenario that was basically untenable and unworkable.

The following is from The Ally In Shamanism and refers to Castaneda's swearing off drugs or the use of drugs by the time of his fourth book:

Although a lot of people do not know it, nor are all people particularly pleased by it or willing to accept it, by Castaneda's fourth book,Tales of Power (1974) and written in a time period circa autumn of 1971 --- ten years after his first use of psychotropic plants under the auspices of Don Juan on Monday, August 7, 1961 --- Castaneda is blatantly DENYING the use of or need of drugs in any way, shape or form, just like I have stated above and for the same reasons. If you recall I wrote:

In reality, the "full use of power can only be acquired with the help of an 'ally'," that Castaneda speaks of, like the use of medicinal plants, drugs, or herbs (Aushadhis) -- which he used intially, but denied the necessary use of later --- is a second level of use between the Shaman and the actual power source, the same source the "ally" would draw upon for power
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So said, Castaneda, in agreement with the non-use of drugs as I have stated above -- because a true shaman can reach the Power of the Shaman without outside crutches --- in Castaneda's fourth book in the chapter titled: "An Appointment with Knowledge" he writes:

Finally I managed to steer the conversation onto the topic of my interest. I began by mentioning that I had reviewed my early notes, and had realized that he had been giving me a detailed description of the sorcerers' world from the beginning of our association. In light of what he had said to me in those stages, I had begun to question the role of hallucinogenic plants. "Why did you make me take those power plants so many times?" I asked. He laughed and mumbled very softly, "'Cause you're dumb." I heard him the first time but I wanted to make sure and, pretended I had not understood. "I beg your pardon?" I asked. "You know what I said," he replied and stood up. He tapped me on the head as he walked by me. "You're rather slow," he said. "And there was no other way to jolt you." "So none of that was absolutely necessary?" I asked. "It was in your case. There are other types of people, however, that do not seem to need them."

Again from Castaneda's fourth book, Tales of Power in the chapter titled: "The Strategy of a Sorcerer"

The extraordinary effect that psychotropic plants had had on me was what gave me the bias that their use was the key feature of the teachings. I held on to that conviction.

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It was only in the later years of my apprenticeship that I realized that the meaningful transformations and findings of sorcerers were always done in states of sober consciousness. FOOTNOTE [5] If you follow the narrative in Castaneda's various writings as well as from what is outlined above, you can unravel through a series of events what led up to the Road Trip with his colleague Bill and how Castaneda met Don Juan Matus --- the shamansorcerer he was to eventually apprentice under. Now, if Don Juan was a composite or not, he is presented as if he wasn't. Castaneda states that Don Juan had, many years before, at the age of twenty, came in contact with a person he calls a master sorcerer by the name of Julian Osorio. Osorio inturn introduced Don Juan into a lineage of sorcerers that was purported to be twenty-five generations long. Don Juan told Castaneda that Osorio had been an actor and during one of his theatrical tours he had met another master shaman, Elias Ulloa, who transmitted to Osorio the knowledge of his lineage of sorcerers and thus inturn through Osorio to Don Juan, then down in lineage to Castaneda. As cited above, Jay Courtney Fikes and others suggest that rather than being one individual, the chance exists that Don Juan was actually a composite of two or possibly even three authentic Indian shamans, the most oft cited candidate being the Cahuilla shamanSalvador Lopez. I have a different take on things. Although involving two individuals, it is NOT my opinion there is any sort of acomposite of individuals. In the third book of his series, Journey to Ixtlan (1972), Castaneda writes that after returning to Los Angeles he "prepared himself for six months" and when he "felt ready" he went back looking for Don Juan, however NOT to or around Nogales, Arizona, but Yuma, Arizona. The difference between Castaneda selecting and going to Yuma to search out Don Juan rather than going to Nogales is huge. In A Separate Reality (1971) Castaneda writes:

"I remembered that Bill and I had once driven all day looking for the house of an "eccentric" Mexican Indian who lived in the area. We did not find the man's house and I had the feeling that the Indians whom we had asked for directions had deliberately misled us."

The time and place the above quote originated from was the Nogales bus station right after Castaneda and Bill had just returned from their Road Trip around the desert southwest --- which ended in Nogales rather than several hundred miles further toward the west than say, Yuma --- and implies that more than likely they
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had just come in from the New Mexico or the general northeastern Sonora region. Taking it a step forward, that same implication places the location they had driven around all day looking for the house of an "eccentric Mexican Indian who lived in the area" as being adjecent to Nogales. In other words, the New Mexico or the general northeastern Sonora region ---NOT Yuma. The question is, IF the Road Trip ended closer to the Yuma side of things rather than Nogales in the first place, why would Castaneda backtrack all the way east to Nogales just to turn around and take the bus west to Los Angeles? Citing a date during the winter recess at the end of the fall semester 1960 (i.e., Saturday, December 17, 1960), after allowing a full six months to lapse without ever seeing or talking with Don Juan since their bus station encounter Castaneda writes, as in the above previously, that he went back looking for Don Juan, however NOT to or around Nogales, Arizona, but Yuma, Arizona, saying:

"I found his house after making long and taxing inquiries among the local Indians. It was early afternoon when I arrived and parked in front of it. I saw him sitting on a wooden milk crate. He seemed to recognize me and greeted me as I got out of my car."

So, Castaneda and his experienced driving around the southwest guide, Bill, drove around a whole day six months before and could not find "the house of an 'eccentric' Mexican Indian who lived in the area" (Nogales/Sonora), but Castaneda on his own, after simply asking a couple local Indians in a effort that he calls taxing inquiries, drove right up in front of Don Juan's house in Yuma. Where I mention in my writings about a meeting between the bio-searcher and myself with a white-haired old Indian on an "excursion deep into a remote part of the southern New Mexico desert" in The Boy and the Giant Feather, making it (the location) possibly difficult to find, Castaneda writes about a town (Yuma) that you can drive right up in front of Don Juan's house and park. It leads me to believe we are talking about two different places and most likely two different people.

There is a person OUTSIDE the typical circle of Castaneda's closest disciples that has gained some traction by the name of Ken Eagle Feather, a follower and advocate of what he calls the Toltec Path, who says in his writings that he met and studied under the "SAME" Don Juan Matus that Castaneda writes about in his books.

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C. SCOTT LITTLETON

C. Scott Littleton (1933 - 2010) former Professor of Anthropology, Emeritus, and former Chair of the Department of Anthropology at Occidental College in Los Angeles, California. Littleton joined the Occidental faculty in 1962, retiring at the end of the spring semester, 2002. Littleton met Castaneda for the first time in Lessa's office at UCLA the same day he sat in on Castaneda's seminar presentation. The two hit it off immediately and because of the level of their friendship, Littleton had Castaneda as a most willing guest lecturer in his classes at both Occidental and UCLA Extension on many occasions. During the winter of 1942, only a few months into World War II, when Littleton was eight years old, he was living in a small beach community along the coast of Southern California and experienced a most unsual event. In the early morning hours of February 25, 1942 he and his whole family were awakened by the sounds of air raid sirens and air defense guns. Searchlights had a huge airborne object of an unknown type and unknown origin within their sights and whatever the object was it was impervious to the continuing barrage and pounding of seemingly direct hits from anti-aircraft fire. Coming to be called the UFO Over Los Angeles or the Battle of L.A., the object turned inland and disappeared into the night over what was then thinly populated farmland and oilfields, but not without first impacting Littleton for the rest of his life. He has since gone on to do intensive academic research into the mythological dimensions of the UFO phenomenon. In so saying, he has sometimes indulged on his suspicions that Castaneda's experiences reflected a UFO connection -- a possibility Littleton raised with Castaneda personally on several occasions despite the absence of clear-cut UFO imagery in his writings --- and Castaneda reportedly told him that he'd "look into it." Source for Littleton comments contained herein from: CREATE, COMMUNICATE, COLLABORATE, Subject: Re: A good read; Sat, 30 Jun 2001 14:59:12 -0700 (PDT); From: "C. Scott Littleton" To: "Dr. Jack Sarfatti." Please note Littleton states he and Castaneda met at UCLA in 1960, shortly after Castaneda met his Yaqui mentor:

"I met Castaneda in Lessa's office on the top floor of Haines Hall. We hit it off immediately & I sat in on his seminar presentation. Remember, this was the spring of 1960, less than three months after he met Don Juan Matus." (see)
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In the introduction to Castaneda's first book THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A YAQUI WAY OF KNOWLEDGE (1968), Castaneda writes:

"In the summer of 1960, while I was an anthropology student at the University of California, Los Angeles, I made several trips to the Southwest to collect information on the medicinal plants used by the Indians of the area. The events I describe here began during one of my trips. I was waiting in a border town for a Greyhound bus talking with a friend who had been my guide and helper in the survey (i.e., the friend and guide being onetime former Pothunter turned reputable archeaologist William Lawrence Campbell). Suddenly he leaned toward me and whispered that the man, a white-haired old Indian, who was sitting in front of the window was very learned about plants, especially peyote. I asked my friend to introduce me to this man."

Please note Littleton writes that he met Castaneda in "the spring of 1960, less than three months AFTER (Castaneda) met Don Juan Matus." Castaneda himself writes that it was "in the summer of 1960" that he met Don Juan --- which would be the summer following the spring that Littleton cites. Academic years run Fall, Spring with a start of a new year between semesters (i.e., Fall 1959, Spring 1960 are the same academic year). Calendar years run Spring, Summer, Fall of the same year (i.e., Spring 1960, Fall of 1960 are the same calendar year, but different academic years). Why Littleton wrote he met Castaneda in the Spring of 1960 saying it was three monthsafter Castaneda had met Don Juan is not clear. In reality Castaneda was yet to meet Don Juan. It could be that Castaneda had so much valid Shamanlike information the only way Littleton and Lessa felt he could have garnered it was by having him to have known Don Juan already. By the time the Nogales bus station meeting between Don Juan and Castaneda occurred --- in the SUMMER of 1960 --- Castaneda had already turned in his paper to Meighan that contained fairly knowledgable references to the Datura plant, the four heads and their various purposes, the roots and their significance, the method of preparation, and cooking and rituals involved in relation to their use. Please see CARLOS CASTANEDA: The Introduction Scenes. His meeting with Don Juan in the bus station lasted only a few minutes with Don Juan departing the depot almost immediately after their conversation. Castaneda did not see Don Juan again until December 17, 1960. Between the end of that summer bus station encounter and the December 17th date in which he met Don Juan, Castaneda turned in his paper for his undergraduate class with Lessa and did his presentation for Lessa's graduate level class. It was not until a FULL six months later, June 23, 1961, that Castaneda formally began his apprenticeship under Don
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Juan --- and another six weeks after that, August 6, 1961, before he had his first experience with any sort of psychotropic plants under Don Juan's auspices. Castaneda's next experience didn't occur until September 7, 1961, with him presenting it in THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN as his "first" experience using Datura. As late as all of the above dates fall compared to when he turned in his papers to Meighan and Lessa, it becomes extremely difficult, if not impossible, for Castaneda to have learned anything of any substance from Don Juan and to have any of it included in either of the two papers. The ONLY way Castaneda could have garnered the information he provided in both papers, "the best information from a shaman he'd ever seen, bar none," could have been through his interactions with the informant. FOOTNOTE [7]

As to how long or short that first meeting in the bus station between Castaneda and the old man may have been or how much information one way or the other --- if any --- could have passed between them, in THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge(1968), Castaneda in his own words writes what transpired:

"I then told him that I was interested in obtaining information about medicinal plants. Although in truth I was almost totally ignorant about peyote, I found myself pretending that I knew a great deal, and even suggesting that it might be to his advantage to talk with me. As I rattled on, he nodded slowly and looked at me, but said nothing. I avoided his eyes and we finished by standing, the two of us, in dead silence. Finally, after what seemed a very long time, don Juan got up and looked out of the window. "His bus had come. He said good-bye and left the station."

It seems apparent Castaneda did all the talking and Don Juan basically did no more than nod, look, and stand in silence during the time they were together. As short as the bus station meeting was it is quite clear, in his own words, Castandea could NOT have garnered any significant amount of information during their time together because, for the most part, Don Juan said nothing. They did not meet again, even for a single moment, until six months later, December 17, 1960 --- and Castaneda had by then, already turned in BOTH of his papers to his professors. As to my contention that the whole bus station meeting lasted only a short time, two things are in play here. One, Castaneda diagrams the conversation word for word. He also intimates Don Juan did not say anything in response, at the most only nodding and standing in silence. Just by going over the conversation and taking into
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consideration no return conversation by Don Juan it is easy to calculate physically not a lot of time would have or could have elapsed. Secondly, Castaneda writes "Finally, after what seemed a very long time, don Juan got up and looked out of the window. His bus had come. He said good-bye and left the station." Notice in his own words, Castaneda carefully selects and specifically writes "what seemeda very long time" --- not that it WAS a very long time --- only that it seemed a very long time.

FOOTNOTE [1] A woman by the name of Mary Joan (Joanie) Barker, often cited as Castaneda's girlfriend at the time, is the person that usually gets the lion's share of credit for originally taking Castaneda to the Morongo Indian Reservation near her childhood home of Banning, California. The inference promulgated in Barker's home being near the Morongo Indian Reservation is that some sort of intimate connection had been established between herself and the Indians because of the proximity of her home --- say for example that she may have volunteered, rendered aid or assistance in some fashion over a period of time, or just hung out, thus being able to lay the groundwork for a long term mutual trust between herself and tribal members. However, although not meant to discount any such prospects from having transpirerd on her part, except for attending an annual festival related to the Indians like almost anybody who lived in the area might, no proof or personal statements by Barker or associates has been forthcoming that substantiates any such actions, either long term or short term, involving Barker. In any case, over and over Barker is reputed to be the person to have taken Castaneda to the reservation for the first time easing the pathway for him to meet a number of Cahuilla tribal members and spiritual elders including Salvador Lopez. Some say it was because of that introduction to Lopez that Castaneda obtained the information he used in his 1960s paper on datura. The suggestion that Lopez or any Cahuilla tribal members was the source for Castaneda's datura information would automatically infer then, that the meeting or meetings would have to had occurred BEFORE the end of the spring semester of 1960 for any of the information gained to have been used in his paper. Therein lays the rub. UCLA professor Douglass Price-Williams, a one-time member of Castaneda's dissertation committee and who counted himself as a friend of Castaneda --- not discouraging strong rumors to the effect by let standing in a lowkey fashion that he may have played a part in the initial meeting between Barker and Castaneda --- has been quoted as saying Barker was a librarian at UCLA sometime in the summer of 1960 and it was during that summer, July or August of 1960, that Castaneda and Barker met. If such was the case, any introduction by her involving
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Castaneda and the Cahuillas or Lopez would have transpired AFTER his paper was turned in.(source)

Continually in my works, as for example, cited in the main text above, I maintain that Castaneda's 1960s Paper On Datura was turned in at the end of the spring semester of 1960, a paper that contained all the information that he supposedly learns over one full year later from Don Juan between August 23 and September 10, 1961. By the time Castaneda met Barker and received an introduction to Lopez, he had already turned in his paper and was yet to meet Don Juan Matus. Therefore, neither Lopez nor Don Juan could have had any instrumental impact. Both the first meeting and the timing of the first meeting between Barker and Castaneda most usually rests on the oft repeated statement reportedly from Douglass Price-Williams that Barker was a librarian at UCLA sometime in the summer of 1960 and it was during that summer, July or August of 1960, that Castaneda and Barker met. The question is, from what source or under what circumstances did the facts behind the statement originate? I, of course, fully accept the Price-Williams timeline because it substantiates and strengthens MY thesis that it was the person called the Informant in Castaneda's works and by me that introduced him to datura and the shamanistic rituals he later uses and bases his Don Juan stories on. Don Juan and Castanedaophiles, pro or con, selectively ignore or overlook what has been presented by me in The Informant and Carlos Castaneda even though it wasn't me that created the dates or timelines presented by Castaneda --- nor was it me who originally presented the Price-Williams statement in the wider media as being accurate or even existing. For example, Corey Donovan, creator of the online Castaneda website and forum Sustained Action, in SALVADOR LOPEZ: One of Castaneda's Original Informants? writes:

"The Cahuilla reservations are near Palm Springs, and thus not far from Los Angeles. They are very near the place where Joanie Barker grew up, and she is known to regularly attend their annual festival. It has been speculated that Joanie, who first met up with Castaneda in the summer of 1960 and soon became his girlfriend, would have taken him out to the reservation she was familiar with when she learned he was taking a class (from Clement Meighan) on shamanism."(source)

The following, also found in Sustained Action, only this time in PRELUDE TO DON JUAN: Castaneda's Early Years, pretty much repeats the summer of 1960 meeting and cites Price-Williams specifically:

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"Summer 1960 - Mary Joan Barker (Joanie), whom Castaneda later describes to the Sunday group as 'don Juan's first student,' becomes involved with Castaneda. [Douglass Price-Williams, a UCLA professor and friend of Castaneda (and, for a time in the early '70's, Florinda's dissertation adviser) remembers Joanie being first employed as a librarian at UCLA sometime in the summer of 1960. Douglass believes the two met up in July or August of 1960 (i.e., around the time of Castanedas separation from Margaret Runyan)."(source)

Again, the question is, where did Cory Donovan and Sustained Action directly obtain the information of when and where Castaneda and Mary Joan Barker first met? I can tell you where I got mine.

In 1973 my former college roomate took a job with the City of Los Angeles working in some fashion in coordinating and mounting exhibits in the art gallery located on the upper floors of the L.A. City Hall among other things. Around the same time he bought a "fixer-upper" dump of a place in Venice, California. Along the way he discovered there was some sort of short-term effort between the perimeters of his job and the Israel Levin Center in Venice. He also discovered, since it was some distance to city hall in downtown Los Angeles and where he lived in Venice, that if he participated in whatever the project was being coordinated with the Center, he could either come in late a few days a week or not come in at all. It just so happened that during that same period, although teaching full time at USC, Barbara Myerhoff was doing fieldwork regarding elderly Jews at the same Center supported by a five-year grant from the National Science Foundation given to the USC Andrus Gerontology Center. In pursuit of their separate endeavors my exroomate and Myerhoff soon crossed paths and it wasn't long after that their crossing of paths was brought to my attention. Through their crossing of paths I was able to finagle or put into place what appeared on the surface to be, and was for all practical purposes, an impromtu meeting --- a meeting that inturn, led from casual conversation to a rather substantial discussion between Myerhoff and myself regarding some aspects of her knowledge of Castaneda that I was hoping to clarify for my own edification. Ten years later, sometime in the fall of 1984 I found myself at the Ojai Foundation in Ojai, California at a talk given by a friend of myUncle, the noted Huichol Indian shaman Don Jose Matsuwa --- probably age 94 or so at the time. After the talk, and this time genuinely so impromptu, I ran into Barbara Myerhoff, as well as, of all people, Professor Douglass Price-Williams, the two engaging in small talk as much as people of their ilk can engage in small talk. I had by then already experienced the events outlined elsewhere with the shaman man of spells high in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica called an Obeah, of which ended in somewhat startling results. Because
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of such, and because I was sure both saw me with Matsuwa after his talk, having been allowed into his inner circle to offer my respects after it became known the relationship with my uncle, I felt confident to be in a circle of such an exaulted environment. To cut to the quick, although it was Myerhoff to whom I originally intended to speak, when I learned one of the people in the associated group she was talking with was Price-Williams, it was to him I directed my pointed question and it was Price-Williams who answered directly. He basically related that he knew Castaneda since shortly after he arrived at UCLA as a new transfer student from L.A. City College and most definitely before Barker ever entered the picture. That did not happen until the summer of 1960 when she took a job in the library at UCLA.

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