Vol 4 - Chap 5

 

 

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   - MIND -

By Geoffrey Wallace Brown, Ph.D.

 

  • Chapter 5

1.

O.K.

I'm done fucking the dog.

(As we say in Montana.)

We are going to start talking about the resurrection!

Which is what the entire New Testament is all about!

In case you didn't know.

The New Testament is typically presented, by the likes of Jerry Falwell, as being about the Fall of Man.  And how Jesus came to "save" us from our "sins."

By his act of "atonement."

Letting himself get crucified, as penance, for the whole of Mankind.

And, God's not only accepting this little piece of Pagan Superstition, but setting it up in the first place!

Horse Shit.

Jocko.

That is not the meaning of the "Resurrection."

That is not the sense in which God "gave" His only begotten Son.

God does not so love the world that he sets it up so that he tempts Man to disobey him.

And then punishes him everlastingly for taking the bait.

That is the serpent talking.

Right out of old Jerry's mouth.

Thank you Jerry.

You have done your work well.

You are the most perfectly transparent wolf in sheep's clothing imaginable.

And, furthermore, you are so god damn arrogant that you are going to remain on television so that the whole world can see exactly what I am talking about.

Thank you Jerry.

You were right.

Television is the medium to broadcast the truth about God.

The Truth that is God.

Another synonym.

Besides Life and Love and Principle and Soul and Mind and Spirit.

These are the seven synonyms that adequately and completely capture the idea, or the knowledge, or the understanding, or the wisdom that is God.

Reflected.

In His Image.

Us.

Each of us.

Each and every one of us.

That is the way in which we have been blessed.

Thank you God.

For making us your inheritors.

Your individual expressions.

Your heirs.

To all the Love there is.

All the Life there is.

All the Truth there is.

All the Principle (Law) there is.

All the Mind there is.

All the Soul there is.

All the Spirit.   All the Spiritual idea.   That is all there is to us: as we will find out.

In the end.

As each of us journeys through the trial, persecution, and resurrection that our Leader identified, by his example, for us to follow.

I am the Way the Truth and the Life.   He said.

I am the door.   He said.

I am the shepherd.   He said.

"Follow thou me."

Was the last thing he said, in the most authoritative book we have--the Book of John.

What do you suppose that means?

I know: It means that we should all sit on our butts and wait for this strange man to come back and rescue us.

I have a homework assignment for each of you.

The only one in this course.

I want you to go down to your local Christian Book Store (and Trinket Company).

And, oh, I've got to tell you...  Pardon me for breaking in the train of thought.   But I've got to tell you one place I visited over in the Holy Land.   Last Spring.

It was called "The Holy Manger Souvenir Store."

No shit.

In Bethlehem.

They have these junk stores all over the Holy Land.

And, well, I bought--you won't believe this but it's true, and it's hanging over the wall in my living room--a Crucifix.

That's right.   A Crucifix.

Carved out of Olive Wood.

With a nail, just one nail, pinning the figure of Jesus on to the Cross.

So you could actually spin it.

The figure.

If you oiled it up enough.

Well, anyway, I want you to go down to your local Christian Bookstore and sneak a peek at their Strong's Exhaustive Concordance.

What I want you to look up in there is the word 'faith'.

Just like a Dictionary.

Look it up.

You will see there are only two listings for the whole of the Old Testament.

A bunch of listings for the Gospels.

And a whole bunch for the other books of the New Testament, especially the letters of Paul, and especially the letter to the Romans.

What I want you to notice, to study, is the difference in the usages and the meanings of the word ‘faith’ by Jesus, as opposed to his "followers."

Especially Paul.

Because most of what we call "Orthodox" Christianity is based on the letters of Paul.

It is not at all based on the Gospels.   (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.)

That is the reason there is so much controversy and confusion over the meaning of just what the doctrine is.

Among the hundreds of different sects of so-called Christianity.

What Jesus was talking about, and what Paul thought he was talking about, were not always the same thing.

Paul did not see, at least he did not see clearly enough, that we are the Son of God.

As well as the Son of Man.

And that only as we put off the latter, do we "see" or have revealed to us the former.

Jesus' whole mission, the entire purpose of his "coming," or his doing what he did, was to show us the way out of the third dimension.

That's it.

The whole thing.

And he said follow me.

As the very last thing to his followers.

And then they, hoping and praying, made up this thing that he would come back, after he had finally and thoroughly disappeared from human (material) sight.

And he wasn't going to come back.

And he isn't going to come back.

And you lovely, devoted little Christian Children, who have faithfully followed the Word as it has been "taught" to you have to let go of this misconception.

It is a lie.

That imprisons your true right, to grow, and live, and learn, and be free.

To find, for yourselves, each of you, your own path that has been laid before you.

That will carry you, lead you, like a real Shepherd out of the third dimension.

Matter.

The cause of all your woes.

This is the Christ.

Speaking.

How do you do.

What those feebleminded cowardly little rats did to the doctrine, the teaching of Jesus, after they regrouped, after they had betrayed him and run like rats in the Crunch.   When the heat was on.   And the Cops were moving in to take him away.

And did.

What they did to his doctrine was to turn the whole god damn thing upside down.

Just like Marx and Hegel.

Only here the stakes were a little higher.

Jesus used the words ‘faith’ and ‘believer’ to indicate that a person was a real seeker of Life, and Truth, and Love, words that characterize the nature of God.

Jesus could perceive that such people were genuine in their search for what is good, and he healed them by the simple act of his seeing that.

And then his "followers" turned the whole thing around, and created this phony fucking religion on the basis of whether or not somebody thought that Jesus was the personal Son of God.

Which was crap.

Which was, indeed, exactly the worst possible thing that could have happened to the teaching.

The teaching was all.   To Jesus.

He gave everything for it.

Jesus gave every thought, every erg of energy he had to the successful implantation of the true doctrine in the minds of his students.

His disciples.

The last thing in the world he would have wanted would have been for them to personalize the teaching; and make it seem that he was something special.

And uniquely blessed.

And good.

Because....for the simple reason that that would have precluded (prevented) his followers from doing what he most wanted: for them to follow him.

 

 

2.

 I watched Billy Graham last night.

A "Crusade."

Kansas City.

Billy is getting old.

And tired.

That's a lot of weight to be carrying around.

A lot of false gospel to sustain.

All by yourself.

Billy had a boxing ring, in the middle of the Stadium, for his analogy.

Guess who was in each corner.

You got it.

The Devil and Miss Jones.

In one corner.

And Jesus Christ and the host of angels, that always accompany him,  in the other.

Kind of a mismatch.

If you ask me.

It kind of makes you want to root for the Devil.

And certainly Miss Jones.

I felt, sincerely, that The Devil In Miss Jones was superior to Deep Throat.

Didn't you.

I mean it was just too hard to swallow--the business about Linda Lovelace's having her clitoris in her throat.

I mean it.

But I did get off on Miss Jones stuffing herself with grapes and bananas.

Thank you God.

For giving us the freedom to think and write and speak and explore.

Every avenue leads to You.

 

 

3.

I had a student I want to tell you about--that sort of represents what teaching is all about.  To me.

His name is Kelly Walsh.

Kelly was one of the people who tried to make it at Whitman, and didn't quite.

His old man had a little graveyard operation on the outskirts of town.

Kelly wanted to be the hometown boy who succeeded.

So he tried to make it into the Big Time.

Whitman College.

He didn't do very well.

At all.

He was particularly disliked by a colleague of mine--a fellow named Robert YFluno.

Fluno hated his guts.

He regaled us with stories, in the faculty lounge, about what a Con Artist this little crumb was.

Fluno was the head of the Political Science Department.

He was in charge of our Pre-Law Program.

You know, sending kids off to Harvard, Yale, Michigan, Berkeley.

Well, poor old Kelly was trying to get through his Political Science Course.

I know the one.

I had taken it from Fluno years and years before.

It was the worst course I had ever had at Whitman.

Fluno was unintelligible.

He was incoherent.

Not only did he have a stutter, a speech impediment, so that you couldn't understand a word he said...when you finally did get the words he was trying to say, they didn't make any sense anyway.

So I could sympathize with Kelly.

I extended a friendly hand, and a warm heart to go with it.

Kelly still didn't make it.

Not even in my classes.

But he never forgot my kindness.

Well, one day, I was up on my Farm, the one up in the foothills of the Blues, about 10 miles outside of Walla Walla.

And Kelly roles up with his Dad's grave-digging equipment.

No shit.

His old man's heavy equipment--a special kind of Back Hoe--that is specially designed for six foot by six foot graves.

I'm not kidding you.

Out in the Garden, part of the 10,000 square feet that I had cleared and prepared for just such an eventuality, I had marked off spaces and locations for my Fruit Trees.

I had four sweet cherries: a Sam pollinator, and a Lambert, and two Queen Anns on one side.

In the middle I had three Apple Trees: a Gravenstein, a Golden Delicious, and a Red Delicious.  All evenly spaced from one another.

This was the only real opportunity I had ever had to use the Geometry I had had from MrJohnson in High School.

Thank you MrJohnson.

I was always kind of good at Geometry.

Plato said you had to have it before you could become a Philosopher King.

Which is my present ambition.

Behind the Apples I had a couple of Apricot Trees.

And one Filbert Nut.

With a Partridge in it.

And, last, and least, in the sense of having the smallest number of trees in its row, was a lone D'anjou PearAnd, a second Filbert Nut.

Paired to the other one.

In the Apricot row.

I had finished the work of mapping it out, so that the trees were evenly spaced from one another, so that they'd have plenty of room to be just as happy as they could be, and so that each of them could grow and grow and grow into whatever their little hearts desired them to be.

My work was done.

Mapping it out.

I needed holes.

And I'd be Goddamned if I was going to dig those sons of bitches myself.

With a shovel.

So, up the road comes Kelly.

My good and faithful and trusty servant.

Just as I had been his.

In the Crunch.

Kelly whistles up with his grave-digging backhoe equipment, unloads it, straddles a likely site, with a marker in it, and sits back and begins digging.

And I sit back in amazement.

Because here is this huge, perfect piece of machinery, digging out exactly the right sized holes.

So I went to school and taught my afternoon class.

And returned home to find twelve perfect holes, at twelve perfect depths, just eagerly waiting to have twelve perfect fruit trees planted in them.

And a Partridge.

 

 

4.

 I went to Glasgow and found the man I am giving this class to, last Weekend.

His name is Craig Robbins.

He is a boxboy at Buttrey's.

The grocery store chain that I worked at as my first job.

Craig has said the first thing that has reflected any intelligence, of any kind, whatsoever, that I have seen in this country.

He just said one little thing, quietly, to himself, while he was boxing my groceries and joking with the checker.

It was snowing out.

The checker came up with one of those little clichés of modern scientific dogmatism that has become the new religion for our New Age.

She said, "You know, no two snowflakes are alike!"

He said, "How do you know?"

And they got into a friendly little fight about it.

But what I could see, having watched him stocking shelves, every week, wondering, what he was doing, and why he was doing it, was that behind that simple little question, "How do you know?" there was the makings of a true, genuine, searching philosophical thought.

"How do you know?" is the beginning of every true philosophical thought.

Or search.

If Craig listens to that question long enough, hard enough, it will lead him to the answer.

It is a real question.

A true question.

I hope it does make him weary, and tired, and disgruntled.

With his lot in life.

I hope it does bring him misery.

I hope that one day he puts his head down on his arm, as he is kneeling on the floor in Buttrey's, for his minimum wage, and breaks out in tears.

Saying why, dear God, why.

Why Me?

Dear God.

Why me?

I came home Friday night and watched a rerun of the last segment of the Mary Tyler Moore Show.

It was one of the best pieces of sitcom I have ever seen.

Ted Baxter coined a great line.

He was in Lou's office, kneeling on the floor beside Lou's chair, begging Lou for something, and saying, "I hate these small offices: there's no room to crawl."

Then I watched a talk show that had Pat Boone on.

Pat goes back to a rivalry with Elvis.

Pat was the good guy who wore White Bucks.

Pat promoted the ideal of Romantic Love, which is designed to make you dependent upon another person to find your happiness.

Elvis was the bad guy--the Dionysian character--with swivel hips.

Pat sang "Love Letters in the Sand."

But nothing that has happened, before or since, will equal what happened when I walked into Bill MacLean's house in the Seventh Grade and heard "Heartbreak Hotel."

To our generation.

And those that followed.

"Blue Suede Shoes" was on the flip side.

I had a pair of green suede shoes.

To sort of compromise.

Saturday was a rough day for me.

I have been at this now for three solid months.

Without a break.

Of any kind.

I am beginning to climb the walls.

All I do is think.

All day.

And night.

Every day.

And night.

So I went to the Movies and took a break Saturday Night.

Thought I was gonna die when Sally Field came out on the screen.  Standing in the doorway.

It’s getting down to -25º.

It may get down to -40, like it did last Winter.

I got myself some Snowmobile Goggles; and some de-fogger spray stuff.

But it doesn't work.

They still fog.

When I go out on my walks.

I have tried to capture the best images I can to get across to you how remote this place is.  Let me try another one.

You know the average Phone Book?

Well the Phone Book for all of Northeastern Montana, called the Big Sky North East, is not only not a full 8 ½" x 11" (it is only 8 ½" X 7") it is a mere 1/4 inch thick.

That's right.

And Montana is the fourth biggest State in the Union.

You can go for a month in this country without seeing a plane.

My house--you know the one I likened to a sailboat--has become a submarine.

I have two fans to circulate the air.

Because it's so cold that the air on the ceiling is hot, and the air on the floor is cold.

I had to call some friends Saturday.

Because I was going out of my tree.

Some real friends.

Childhood friends.

I called Bud Ward and Bill.

Bud wasn't home; he was out laying Carpet.

But I talked to "Sam."  His wife.  (Marguerite.)

She is so deep and calm and steady that she calmed me right down.

I did the best thing I ever did in High School with Bud.

I wrote a story, for the school paper, on the Sports Page, about the Elk that he and Mickey DesChamps shot up Fish Creek.

It was a two-column story; and I received an award for it.

The Elk they got was just two points (1/4 inch) away from being a Boone and Crockett Trophy.

The rack was so huge.

It weighed their pickup down to the axle.  It was so heavy.

But the reason it was such a good story was because, momentarily, it took the attention away from the Jocks and Social Climbers and focused it on two guys that were worthy of some light.

Bud later married Mickey's sister.

Sam.

I then called Bill.

Who had a terrible terrible hangover.

He and Bud had gone out and gotten drunk the night before.

I gave Bill my recipe for a Hangover Cure.

But he didn't take me up on it.

My Hangover Cure.

You want to know my Hangover Cure?

Well, first you eat some fruit and drink some Champagne.

And then you wash down two hits of Criss-Cross Methedrine, and one hit of 5 mg. Valium, for a little layback.

Then you start Breakfast.

Crepes and whipped cream and strawberries.

And then you start to smoke that dynomite dope you've been saving for a special occasion....

Guaranteed.

I talked with Sherry Reardon (Fraser) for about an hour after that.

We discussed our history as vandals and kleptomaniacs.

She mentioned the Clubhouse.

The Clubhouse was out in back of Penn Stohr's house, right alongside the Alley.

I won't go into what happened there.

But it was sweet.  And innocent.

I love Sherry.

And she loves me.

And I could really feel that.

In the Crunch.

Where you feel your bones breaking.

I don't have too much longer to go--about two and a half weeks.

December 20th.

At 9:30 in the morning.

I will be done.

Finished.

Whew.

I talked with Kathee yesterday afternoon.

She called me.

Which was really nice of her.

I am going to her house for Christmas.

To be with her family.

The whole tribe.

Which numbers about 32 now.

I told Kathee what I had said about Christian Scientists having a stick up their asses.

She said, "Good! Tell them they are a bunch of narrow-minded assholes."

Good old Kath.

I love the purity of her honesty.

Kathee has a capacity to bring me into the reality of human life faster and better than anyone I know.

I couldn't possibly be doing what I am doing without her help.

It takes the most severe discipline I have ever seen.

I keep a bullwhip on my living room floor, in front of the T.V. set.

A well-oiled bullwhip.

Whenever I feel discouraged, or depressed, or the fear and self-doubts start covering me like bees, I pick up that Whip and go in the back room--the one that doesn't have anything in it, anymore--and crack that baby a few times.

That wakes me up out of the hypnotism.

Or, last Weekend, because I was feeling particularly harried, and the car was out of the Garage, I took it out in my Two Car Garage and cracked that Mother Fucker till my arm was tired.

A little strange, to be sure.

A two hundred pound man, cracking a bullwhip in a Garage, when it is twenty below, in his boxer shorts and moccasins.

But, then, that is why they made Frazer, Montana.

No one would notice.

I keep a picture of a big, blond, perfectly formed stud, performing oral sex with a big, blond, perfectly formed babe on my living room floor.

A Poster, actually.

I got it out of Larry Flynt's July issue of Hustler.

He calls it the "Born Again" issue.

The two people have a special device, a chair-like contraption, on which to perform the deed.

So it photographs well.

I also have a copy of the Best of Hustler, which I sent away for out of the July issue.

It features a defense by Larry of his obscenity and pornography, based on a series of pictures showing the dead and the maimed from the Vietnam War.

These pictures are very vivid.

And lifelike.

Headless bodies.

Bodiless heads.

These, he says, are the real obscenity; not his dirty pictures.

Lying up against the front of my T.V.--horizontally--is my razor-sharp machete.

Jesus brought a sword (Matthew 10.  vs. 34.), but I only have a machete.

But it's razor sharp.

And has a dirty blade.

And a worn handle.

From killing, perhaps, a hundred thousand Canadian Thistles.

On top of my T.V.--on the right--there is an Artillery Shell.

Loaded with freshly cut wheat.

Stalks, sticking out of it.

Like Weeds.

I have dried Weeds all over that room.

I love Weeds.

They are the most beautiful of all floral arrangements.

They are so unique.

And delicate.

And require so little water!

As Betty White would observe.

Above my T.V.--which is situated on a Cable Spool, which I cut to size to fit in the corner, and which is covered by a tapestry from Kathee--is an antique Kerosene Lamp.

Hanging from the ceiling.

Polished Brass.

For light.

I got it for Kathee for her Birthday; but she didn't want it in the Divorce Settlement; so I inherited it.

On top of the T.V.  is my very favorite thing in the House.

A Crocodile Head.

That's right.

A little baby foot-long Crocodile Head.

I got it in Egypt.

Luxor.

On the banks of the Nile.

For seven bucks.

I have his teeth all polished.

And his mouth open.

Smiling at me.

Pointed straight at me.

Smiling.

He is a symbol, for the dragon in the Apocalypse.

Leviathan.

Which is where the notion of dragons probably came from.

Crocodiles.

In Christian Science, the Dragon, the Leviathan, the Devil all summed up, is Error.

All of Mortal Mind.

That is, all of the Mortal thinking, that gets us into the messes we always, habitually, unceasingly, normally, find ourselves in.

When that thinking has been reversed; that is, when we tap into the Mind that is God, that is the Identity of Us All; all of the problems that we face, or seem to face in this human existence, will utterly and completely disappear.

That is my testimony.

To you.

So, the Crocodile Head is a symbol, like the snakeskin I have tacked to the wall on my back porch, of the nothingness, the utter impotence, of Error.

Human Illusion.

Hypnotic Dreams.

The Third Dimension.

Anything, that stems from the belief that we are finite creatures, made from matter, with minds of our own, that have a beginning and an ending, and are locked into time and space.

All of which are lies.

And the human picture shall express those lies for as long as they are believed.

For as long as they are believed.

ForAsLongAsTheyAreBelieved.

But!

(And this is the absolutely central thing for you to see: it is the reason why Christian Science has a Crown over the emblem of a Cross as its insignia).

As the human vields, it is blessed!

That is why we have the terrific progress that we have in this country and the World today.

Because we have made the spiritual and moral progress.

Not the technological.

Or Scientific.

Spiritual and Moral.

That is the real kind of progress that we have made; because that is the only kind of progress we can make.

All these other things that people like to credit themselves with discovering and envisioning and building--all of these things are really blessings and rewards that are reflected back to us as we yield our human misconceptions.

Or Common Sense.

As we call it.

At Mom and Dad's knee.

The Common Sense that would have you preserve the safe and secure.

That would keep you carefully locked into the Third Dimension of Material Belief, so that you are not a threat to the less courageous (curious), less loving, less trusting, and less humble.

That is, to those less willing to humbly and meekly follow what looks right and good.

Today.

Here.

Now.

Even though it may take you to the farthest, remotest, strangest place in the World.

For you to learn patience.

And quiet.

And listening.

And obedience.

And love....

The final touch; the final little symbol I keep in my little world of symbols in my Living Room is my favorite.

It is a twelve gauge shotgun shell.

Placed on the lower jaw of the smiling Crocodile.

A slug.  Actually.

One bullet.

1/2 inch in diameter.

Pointed right between my eyes.

As I watch T.V.

 

 

5.

 Good morning.

Yesterday was a difficult lecture for me.

I write on a Stenographer's Pad in the morning, and transfer that to typewritten page in the afternoon.  I know I am going to generally leave it alone after that, so I have to do it right.

That requires consistency and stamina.

And, in this case, grape juice.

That's right, grape juice.

Kathee was a gung ho canner.

Of fruits and juices and sauces.

And I still have a pantry just full of such things as sweet cherries, tomato juice, and grape juice.

I had to break open one of the quarts of Grape Juice yesterday for the sugar.

Glucose.

Mainlining.

That was a long day.

I said some hard things.

But I had to give you some idea of why people might think I was nuts.

Because they did lock me up.

And I wasn't nuts.

But they thought I was.

And, I suppose, from their point of view, for good reason.

Maybe.

I doubt it.

I still do.

I really do.

But, maybe.

I mean, my idea, at the time was simply to build Whitman in to one of the best schools in the Country.

It had all the resources.

It still does.

It just needed the right vision of itself.

Which, at the time, I was trying to supply.

That is, get people to see.

I talked with Ely Chertok, at a party, one time, for two hours.  Trying to get him to see that what we really taught was love.

Ely was a Marxist.

And a Freudian.

I had, at one point, gone over to his office, with my special copies of Das Kapital to give them to him for a present.  But he already had the same copies.

Ely had taught me Freud.

In a Seminar.

When I had been a student there.

Ely knew more about love than anybody else on the Faculty.

His knowledge, I think, came from his Jewish heritage.

Ely was later to become my defense "attorney" when I appealed my denial of tenure.

He did a good job for me.

And we should have won it.

I spoke to Scottye Lewis, at that same party.

She had come the same year I had to the Faculty at Whitman.

She was in charge of Girls Athletics.

She was later to get tenure.

In her fourth year.

I told Scottye at that party that the Athletic Department was all done being third-class citizens.

On our campus.

I felt that athletics (uniquely) offered the one place where students could learn most freely the character building qualities that are absolutely essential for courage, determination, and a sense of fair play.

Not to mention grace under stress.

Scottye was grateful for my observation.

If, perhaps, a little skeptical about my promise.

I spoke to Marge Pengra at that same party.  She was one of the school nurses; and married to my favorite guy in the Physics Department--Jim Pengra.

I told her that nurses were all done being second-class citizens (to the doctors) in the Student Health Center.

Since it was perfectly obvious that the Nurses ran it anyway.

And all they lacked was the authority to give fairly innocuous drugs.

She was grateful.

I saw Pete Reed at that Party too.

Pete was the Treasurer of Whitman.

I told him that I thought I knew where I might be able to get my hands on some money for our school.  (I was thinking of dear old Wellington's Estate; which clearly needed a good home.  A little far-fetched to be sure, but a thought.)

Kathee had given me a Journal, for my Birthday, that year.

In February.

8th.

It is the Age of Aquarius.

You know.

I had told her that I was pregnant.

That Fall.

With something.

I knew not What.

But something.

That was going to change our lives.

She gave me the Journal to put it down.

I was also talking with Steven Ringhoffer, the best lawyer in town, and a guy I would like to see on the Bench.

Ringhoffer had his degree from Harvard.

Where my brother, grandfather, and great-uncle had gone.

So I was a little prejudiced.

I told Steve what was going through my mind; how it was unfolding; as it unfolded; during our several talks in his office.

I was also in touch with a Doctor.

Ben Hammett.

Internal Medicine.

He seemed to have some brains.

Or at least some sympathy for the profound exploration of the Mind that I was on.

He prescribed me some drugs.

Including Thorazine.

50 mg.  tablets in a plastic bottle.

That I carried around in case I got in trouble.

I called them my baby rattle.

I could see that this trip was going to be deeply religious.

It lasted from February through May.

When I walked into my office building; and there was Kathee, my best friend, the D.A., the President's wife, and three great big cops.

When I saw them, I knew it was over; and I had lost.

So I walked over to the Cops, shook their hands, told them that they were professionals, as was I, and I knew what they had to do; and they would get no trouble from me.

Which they didn't.

They were impressed.

Because they knew they were going to destroy my life, my career, as a teacher of Philosophy in that town.

So did I.

We walked into my office, which had been neatly arranged by Mike Rona, my most trusted and loyal student.

I handed the President's wife my (unread) course critiques for that semester, from my students, which Mike had set on the corner of my desk.

These she was to give to the President, so that he could make an assessment of my work in class that semester.

Rona was Vice-President of the Student Body.

The most powerfully intelligent people in the student body were closely associated with our Department.

Four of the seven years I taught there Philosophy Majors were selected to speak, at Commencement, by the Seniors.

I was into Far Eastern Philosophy, and its possible connections with Christianity at this time.

Babba Ram Dass.  Alan Watts.  Lilly.  R.D. Laing.

Suzuki.  Later.

I had taken all my classes into the Auditorium of our building, a nice new, fancy structure freshly built for us by the Olin Foundation, and had the Audio man, Larry Paynter, play a tape by Richard Alpert (or a guy who was then known as Richard Alpert), a Psychologist from Harvard, who had gotten mixed up in LSD with Timothy Leary, and who had gone over to India, and had come back to tell us what he had found.

I had asked Joe Maier to sit in on this.

So he could see what was going on.

We turned the lights way down.

And listened to Richard Alpert's lecture in British Columbia.

Which later became a record.

Joe was impressed.

I think with my insanity.

Joe was the logical-positivist-Philosopher-of-Science for our Department.

Joe didn't let things into his consciousness unless they were provable, demonstrable, realities.

Third-dimensional of course.

One of the things I had told Ely and my students in class, was that what Jesus was trying to teach us (show us) was that love is something that has to be protected.

Because all that is Mortal will try to destroy it.

In other words, everything earthly, or having its interests based on the earthly, will try to destroy it.

That was why I thought Whitman was such a great place.

Because it was fully equipped to arm its students with the tools they would need, in the professional world, to protect their love.

To protect the flowering little plant--that is their own sense of love--from the ravages of the World.

That was why I was willing to throw everything I had into the effort to get them to see this.

And make it happen.

By planting the seeds.

Ideas.

I knew that all that needed to happen was for people to see the truth--the reality--of what I was saying.

I also knew it would take a 100% shot from me to make that happen.

There was so much fear.

And resistance.

On the part of the institution.

Not the students.

The students, of course, were eager and happy.

At the prospect of anything so lovely being true.

I had one student in particular that year, the Nephew of our Dean of Women, who never forgot what he saw that year.

Todd Hammer.

Todd was in my office three years later, after I had been canned at Whitman, and was all ready to walk out the door, having been stripped of my stripes.

Into oblivion.

Todd was screaming, literally screaming at me, pounding his fist on the arm of my office chair...screaming, "You owe me!"

Meaning, I had not the right to go into oblivion.

Having seen and said and done what I had.

Everyone else, in my entire world, so far as I knew, had long since buried any thought that I had been anything but nuts.

Except my Dad.  Of course.

Kathee had called my Dad, over in Missoula, and asked him to fly over immediately.

Charter flight.

Which he did.

Kathee was afraid I was going to stand up that Commencement, or Baccalaureate, and give a speech.

Telling them how much I loved them, and how we were going to make the school into something truly magnificent.

So the Old Man came.

Saw that I was serious.

And right.

And left the next day.

Kathee went into Apoplexy.

She was only twenty-three.

And this was a terrific burden to lay on her.

The President had told Kathee that I was going to lose my job, if I didn't submit myself for treatment.

The President arrived at that conclusion, partially because I had shown his wife, Kit Sheehan, the tooth marks on my arm, where Kathee had bit me the night before.

Kathee and I fought a lot less than most couples.

This was the only time we had ever gotten physical with each other.

And it wasn't bad.

Not nearly as bad as some of the black eyes I had seen coming to Campus.

But Kit freaked out.

And Don, her husband, freaked out.

And Ken freaked out.

Ken Knopf.

The Dean.

I had also kept Ken in weekly, sometimes almost daily touch, with how this thing was progressing.

Ken was my immediate Boss.

I loved Ken.

Ken loved me.

When Kathee and I had gotten married, two years before, Bill Soper had given us a Party at his house.

For all the Old Guard and friends of ours on the Faculty.

I was so deeply deeply happy, and thrilled, at this Party, that they were giving for me (for us) that, as I was leaving I gave old Ken, my Boss, a great big hug.

We had always been very close.

He had hired me the same day he met me.

When I first interviewed for my job at Whitman.

Nobody else even applied.

I had told Ken, as I was "progressing" with my "pregnancy," about Dope.

I told him it was very interesting.

It wasVery interesting.

Especially to a guy whose professional specialty was the Mind-Body Problem.

How the two Interact.

Hammett thought so too.

Which was why he gave me the drugs.

I even told Sheehan about it.

I told both him and Knopf that they ought to try Grass.

Just to see what it was like.

But, I also told them that I couldn't give it to them; because the day might come when they would have to fire me; and if they did, I wouldn't want to have that on them.

They were pleased.

And impressed with my honesty.

 

 

6.

 Good morning.

I watched some more evangelists last night.

Singing, Gospel, Ministry.

It recalled to mind the one thing that I hated and feared above all else.  On Earth.

The Cake and Ice Cream Brigade.

That's right.

I do not fear death.

I do not fear torture.

I do not fear public humiliation.

I fear the Cake and Ice Cream Set.

And the People that go with it.

Watching this guy, and the intense stupidity that he and all the other "evangelists" you see on T.V.  represent, reminded me.

These are the guys, who, when you do run into real difficulty in your life, and you start to maybe turn your thought upward....these are the guys that come flashing to your thought, and all of their pious poppycock about how you have to "accept" "Jesus" into your heart.

And thereby effectively destroying any interest or yearning in that direction that your trouble might have been turning you to.

Good work boys.

Merry Christmas to you too.

Fuck You.

Well, they have a very nice neat cubbyhole to put me in: I am certified bananas.

And very grateful to be there too.

A’la R.D. Laing.

I recognize that this may cause a little incredulity to rise in the air, but when I was taken to the Bin the greatest single problem I had was finding out and correcting what was "wrong" with me.

Oh they gave me Haldol.

And put the "brakes" on me, as they put it.

And broke me, or tried to.

As I put it.

But when it got down to the Nitty and the Gritty about what was my problem, and just how I should go to work on myself, there were no conclusions whatsoever.

Except the general air of Manic Depressive stuff.

Which was a word that wasn't even used.

Although they gave me Lithium.

Joseph Becker took me to his class, and interviewed me in front of his graduate students.  He asked me about "voices" I was hearing, a choice moment of humiliation.

He told me in the end, that my prognosis was extremely poor.

The guy running the Bin, when I asked him how long I would have to stay on the Lithium, replied..."Indefinitely."

But the Male Nurse, with whom I spent most of my time, told me frankly after we got to know each other, that he didn't know why I was in there.

I did nothing, while I was there, except seize the opportunity as a unique chance to really dig in and try to find out the psychoanalytic origin of my problems.

I mean what an opportunity.

For a guy like me.

Why not?

But they couldn't help me.

Oh they told me I had problems all right.

Presumably they had to believe that, for having me there, and destroying my life.  (Career.)

And it wasn't the drugs.

The Resident directly in charge of me, a Psychiatrist named Bob Watson, wrote the Dean, Ken Knopf, a letter telling him it wasn't the drugs.

What was it?

They got my Old Man and my Brother over there--the Hospital was a teaching hospital at the University of Washington in Seattle--for a family session.

Pat Jarvis got us together and gave us a little Microclass in Transactional Analysis.

And Therapy.

And told me that I had "real" problems with my Dad.

Thanks Pat.

Fuck you.

There was a Clinical Psychologist that worked with Watson named Jack Hunziker.  This guy had a spark of distant intelligence somewhere buried in all that hopeless dogmatism and theory and junk you are forced to gobble down in Graduate School.

He and I talked a little bit about how he and his wife were trying to decide whether to split up.

It was obvious that Kathee and I were having a Crisis, so we had some common ground there.

Watson was a little more artificial.

He tried to draw anger out of me by telling me to yell at him that he was an arrogant son-of-a-bitch.

I was game.

They got together and decided that I was "intellectualizing" too much.  That is, I wasn't "responding" to therapy the way they wanted and expected.

That is, I wasn't falling apart.

In fact, I was eager and interested.  And trying to talk to them--all the time--about the theory behind the procedures they were using.

I'm afraid I wasn't a very good prospect for them.

So they blamed me.

Of course.

I have always taught that when we are faced with a lack of correspondence between our way of looking at the World and the World Itself, we always blame the World.

This is the heart of female logic.

It's the basis of my Doctoral Dissertation.

Only there I show how it applies to all of Medicine and Science.

You see, when we have something that doesn't fit into our "scientific" classificational schemata, we have a name for it: we call it an anomaly.

Or an "Abnormality."

If we choose to hang on to the scheme (the scientific "theory"), we simply tolerate the anomaly, or abnormality.  And put up with the psychic tension it generates, i.e., with the suggestion that there is something wrong with the theory.

If, however, we choose not to put up with the tension generated by the World not shaping up to our view of it, we can elect to modify our theory and eliminate the "abnormality" by incorporating it into the scheme.

This we have done, for example, with the "Marine" Iguana, a reptile that swims too much.

If, however, we elect not to revise our conceptual scheme, to accommodate the tension between the state of affairs and the theory about how the state of affairs ought to be, and the tension is intolerable, for one reason or another, then we have only one course of action left: change the state of affairs, so that it shapes up to the model.

That is the basis of all medicine.

Including Psychotherapy.

The trouble in Psychotherapy is that it really helps to have a model, with respect to which you have an idea of what to shape the patient up to.

That has been the chronic problem with Shrinkery since its inception in 1893, with Freud's publishing of "On the Psychic Mechanisms of Hysterical Phenomena."

It was no less a problem in my case.

So there I sat, trapped in the Jack and Bob marble game, trying to figure out ways to help them rattle me.

I wasn't unhappy.

I was calm.

I thought.

For the circumstance.

I mean the fact that I was watching everything I had ever worked for being destroyed before my eyes, and knowing that the prospects of finding employment for an itinerant Philosopher were nil, and that I was really too old to put my heart into anything else....all of these things added up to a case of total, chronic nightmare.

But, that was the chance I had taken when I got into Philosophy in the first place, instead of something safe.

I knew it.

I had taken it.

I was ready to go with the program.

But my fear seemed eminently reasonable.  To me.

It really did.

I realized that these guys thought it had to be unreasonable.  (Irrational.)

But I felt it was totally and completely understandable.

I was thinking about guys like Dick Thomassen.

Thomassen was the Engineering and Computer Science guy for our school.

In the Math Department.

He had come to us from the military.

Dick was a Catholic, and a member of the Cake and Ice Cream Brigade.

My arch foes.

So, back when I had been "nuts" I figured that I had better make my peace with this guy.

He was a nice guy.

And a "little lonely."

As Matt Dillon would say.

I mean the Ice Cream and Cake Brigade can't be any fun.

Can it?

So, right in the middle of my looniness I gave old Dick a call.

At the end of the year.

At about when the Old Man flew over to see me.

He asked me what I wanted.

I told him I wanted to be better friends.

He told me he would meet me at the Faculty Party the next day.

He never showed up.



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