Friday, June 8, 2012

Godfather of New Age

In the early 1980s, I began a series of incidences involving 11:11 on digital clocks, coinciding with a series of remarkable precognitive dreams.

For example, I would dream about an unknown person and at 11:11 AM two days later I would meet this person for the first time, whereupon I would soon discover that I knew a great deal about the person that I couldn't possibly have any logical way of knowing.

A zillion more examples -- always noticing 11:11 on digital clocks and having amazing dreams about future events that came true.

These events changed my life. I was in my late 30s, working as a computer programmer and general manager of a computer software company in Los Angeles. During the course of these life-altering "supernatural" incidents, I quit my  job and became an independent contractor, cutting back on my hours, and began exploring metaphysical phenomena.

I read every book I could find on various subjects such as dreaming, mental telepathy, remote viewing, psychic healing, parallel dimensions, altered states of consciousness, past-life regression, future-life regression, reincarnation, higher astral planes of existence, sojourn of the soul, etc., etc.

One of the earliest set of books I read, and re-read many times, were written by Carlos Castaneda.

Castaneda was born on December 25, 1925 in Peru. He moved to the USA in the 1950s and earned his PhD at UCLA. He was an anthropologist and writer who wrote 12 books that detail (in the first person) his training to become a shaman.

Castaneda's books are focused on becoming a warrior, not in the sense of combative fighting, but rather as a seeker of wisdom and a higher level of existence of freedom within a world of the unknown (to eventually become known through the journey) and the unknowable (beyond human capacity to comprehend).

"Only as a warrior can one withstand the path of knowledge. A warrior cannot complain or regret. His life is an endless challenge, and challenges cannot possibly be good or bad. Challenges are simply challenges." Carlos Castaneda

The journey of a warrior is a journey of self-discovery and self-perfection. It is an end within in itself, directing internal energy at hyper-dimensional forces controlling the planet rather than indulging in self-importance.

"What weakens us is feeling offended by the deeds and misdeeds of our fellow man. Our self-importance requires that we spend most of our lives offended by someone." Carlos Castaneda

The warrior's goal is a life well lived. He lives in the world but is not of the world. His quest is not to conquer for gain or power or glory -- it is to conquer oneself through understanding and humility, to become impeccable.

"What we call reality is only one way of seeing the world, a way that is supported by social consensus." Carlos Castaneda

A list of Carlos Castaneda books in my personal collection:


Castaneda worked for seven years on his first book, THE TEACHINGS OF DON JUAN, which was published in 1968.

In 1973, he purchased a large house in Westwood, near the UCLA campus, where he continued to write books.

He shared the house with three devoted women whom he called "the Witches," who broke off relationships with the outside world and changed their names -- Regina Thal became Florinda Donner-Grau, Maryann Simko became Taisha Abelar and Kathleen Pohlman became Carol Tiggs.

Carlos Castaneda died in April of 1998.

Two of the Witches, Donner-Grau and Abelar, disappeared the day after Castaneda's death. Amalia Marquez and Kylie Lundahl, associates involved in Castaneda's workshops, also disappeared the same day.

Theories of group suicide of the four disappearances abound, following their beloved Carlos Castaneda into Infinity.

A few weeks later, Patricia Partin, Castaneda's adopted daughter, also disappeared. Soon thereafter, Partin's automobile was found abandoned in Death Valley (Panamint Dunes area), where Castaneda's ashes may have been scattered.

Partin's remains were discovered in 2003, near where the car had been abandoned, and identified in 2006 through DNA analysis.

Critics of the Castaneda books have suggested they are simply works of fiction and Don Juan was simply a figment of imagination. However, the authenticity is irrelevant -- the brilliance of the teachings overshadows the author's methodology.

Some people call Carlos Castaneda the Godfather of New Age. Whatever he was, he had a profound affect on my introduction into the Reality of the Illusion of Reality.

To obtain wisdom, one must be curious.

Quote for the Day -- "The aim is to balance the terror of being alive to the wonder of being alive." Carlos Castaneda

Bret Burquest is the author of 8 books, including THE REALITY OF THE ILLUSION OF REALITY, ORB OF WOUNDED SOULS and PATH TO FOURTH DENSITY (available on Amazon). He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a dog named Buddy Lee, along the Journey to Ixtlan.

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