day 3 : they stole little maisry seven years long
so the human body is manifold and has several sets of sensoria. the precise array of other-worlds that these permit communion with varies from one gene-pool to another. religion, esoteric schools, shamanism, witches, wizards, spiritualists, psychedelic drug cults, and kids’-lore, from our own culture alone, without enumerating the vast number of magical systems outside the mainstream of english-speak, have always used ritual and other magical practices to awaken a specified range of sensoria to enable communion with a favourite other world, the beings – very often human-like beings – of which also have their own array of sensoria admitting them to other worlds some of which we may share, while others remain beyond our ken. some people are specialised to interface with one otherworld only, while others have smaller or larger selections from the vast array of possibilities. and the different worlds have all manner of responses to us, some seeking us, others trying to avoid us, others completely unaware of us. some have highly structured programmes of awareness-raising, and will bestow upon willing aspirants the ‘fairy sight’ and provide experienced spirit guides dedicated to doing good. some are predatory and will sell you off the planet or worse, and are to be greatly feared. our best defence is knowledge – we have to take shamanisms seriously.
in childhood the borderline between fantasy and reality is fairly flexible. fantasy provides a sort of playground or sand pit where otherworldly beings guide and inspire the child’s play towards specific interfaces. subconsciously as a culture, we not only consent to this, we actively encourage it. we guide very young children to talking animal totems, through talking toys, folk and nursery tales and pantomime. later they encounter fairies. later there are heros, archetypes and the powerful characters that populate the fantasies of adolescents. norms decide where we place the borderline.
as with dreams, there are many forms of fantasy, all serving different purposes. creative fantasy based on storybook inspirations are often developed as a nexus between the child’s experience and whichever otherworld seeks that child. the two realities are destined to interface consciously, though perhaps not for many generations in most people, and parents and educators actively assist in it, even imposing dominant culture fairy worlds on nations our culture oppresses.
the otherworlders have their awareness, sub-consciously the child has his/hers, and they must build a bridge between the two worlds. the child proposes for example that the brownie hit the gnome with a stick. but the brownie affects huge comicalised but real dismay, and the gnome pretends to cry and they won’t play anymore, so the child learns that he/she must stop proposing nastiness, for cruelty is not the way in dingly dell and the wild, wild woods. on the other hand, the brownie might propose that the child can’t reason in a certain sophisticated way, which will result in a subliminal prompt from the child’s psyche inspiring a certain sequence of play that proves the brownie wrong. to the extent that their sense of each other becomes more accurate and relevant, the focus improves. when it’s good enough, you’re nearly ready for the first conscious telepathic exchanges which greatly speed up the process of assimilation. usually, this stage is not reached at all in children who are not destined to become seers in this life. but there are always some born in every generation and we can’t just keep chucking ‘em in the loony bin.
it’s true that from about the age of twelve i was inexplicably ostracised and having not much investment in it, i withdrew from life and let fantasy take over. rich and egocentric it was, and i was happy despite disastrously failing at school and being regarded as either a dangerous rebel or a kind of tragic accident by everyone i knew. i thought of myself as a poet, and rather fancied i had talent as an artist, and maybe i could be a folk singer, good guitar, song to sing…
god knows how i got into uni but i did, with latin and French and a keen interest in comp phil as it used to be called. i enrolled for ancient greek and lusted after old and middle english which was a second year subject. god wasn’t i the one for Chaucer! didn’t i drool over catullus. wasn’t Thucydides the heights of whatever for me-o?!!!!!!
but a magic wand was waved and the bewylderbeeste’s studies stopped. attendance at lectures ceased. that was in 1970. i worked for a year or so and then in 1972 tried again. bounced off. got a clerical job in the public service and enrolled for part time uni in 1973 – lost job and dropped out again. i was mystified. just couldn’t explain. so i fantasised 24/7 instead, talking to philosophers, poets, and saintly people and sometimes escaping from or being abused in various ways by people i thought of rather deliciously as ‘establishment thugs’.
but i bought and read lots of second-hand books, poetry and classics, reading them and discussing them with my fantasy companions. i read the best sellers on feminism, antipsychiatry, extrasensory perception and the psychological manipulation of the populace through subliminally psychoactive advertising in the mass media. i continued to take a keen interest in linguistics and comp phil, reading closely and thinking carefully about anything i encountered on the subject without consciously going after it. i didn’t even finish reading my first year text books. i tried marijuana, lsd and magic mushrooms, carefully eschewing anything narcotic and after all settling on marijuana. it is indeed a great benefactor, and does no harm. indeed it saved me. i went to wine bars and talked to philosopher poets i found there, but alcohol is a dumbing down poison and i didn’t enjoy the hangovers. but i bounced off university time and again.
now there are other perspectives, many of them more pathetic than the one i’m coming from, on this situation. you can see the alienation intensifying, the gulf between me and my fellow humans widening, the allure of my psychic life increasing, the grip of the common reality releasing me. and as for the other worlds and their claims, i was psychically very nearly up for grabs were it not for the focus of my fantasy, which surrounded me with saintly intellectuals who thought highly of me, or at least kindly, despite my conceit.
and you might say it was the lsd that awakened the relevant sensoria and brought me to the telepathy i experienced with the tall dark man who read with me while i was tripping and we reasoned together. he advised me to see that i was dysfunctional as a personality, though more rational and reasonable than most, indicated that my mind expansion urge was irrevocable – with or without psychedelia, it’s the direction we must evolve in – and pointed me in the direction of a radical deep feeling release therapy that deconstructed the neurotic strategies i had adopted against the series of severe shocks to my social being that i had had during my life. i was a neurotic mess, no doubt about it, no will of my own, no courage, no truth or honesty, living in fantasy, headed for nowhere. i though i was being very self-indulgent, casting myself in such a role, but it was a fair description, i had to admit. i only had to con the old dears into believing it to so they’d fork out the moolah.
now i wasn’t getting on too well with my progenitors at that time. they were enraged that i, their only daughter had fizzled on them. to them i was a dud. in those days and in that social milieu, everyone expected a girl to do high-school, get a degree, as high a one as possible, not less than a masters or you’d be looked down on, and then she’d marry an equally fabulously highly qualified scholar and they’d have children with terribly, terribly high iqs and abstruse interests. but like i kept saying, i’m not a mama. so i’m not bringing home a chinless wonder with a glorious variation on the ruy lopez to impress my da, and a sweet way with old women to enchant me ma, i’m asking for the money for a quack psychiatric treatment offered by a gang of hippies who have latched onto a bizarre fad and the fees are steep. i applied all the leverages and won. for shame of hurting her child poor Zelda, for so i shall name this mother of mine, financed my treatment and yes, it exploded all my repressed emotions and made mild and pleasant meadows of what had been the minefields of my mindscape. and then i could appreciate zelda’s predicament and blame her no more. because it takes all that before old maids like me appreciate how a mother might feel. like a sow when she rolls on her piglet by mistake and when she gets up it just squeals and squeals and squeals and can never be fixed.
it made me calm enough to listen to the sounds of my body. and that’s how it came about that i was in the cosy lounge-room of my little inner city cottage i was staggering around half in fantasy half just fumbling about when i found myself shepherded to the couch where i lay still listening. waved of magnetic energy passed through me, and i felt magnetically charged. i was not aware that i was frightened until the voice spoke, and i heard it not with my ears or in my head, but via my solar plexus as a pleasant vibration in the enhanced magnetic field that reached every part of me. it said, ‘relax, relax, relax’. i didn’t – i leapt up and panicked. but i adored it, and loved that it had happened. the dark man in blue had spoken to me. i felt grateful and glad as if i knew him well. much later i came to call him saint peter, but don’t take that too seriously just yet. he didn’t.
one of the best things about it was that it solved everything. all i had to do was tell a psychiatrist and they would declare me schizophrenic and there’d be a guaranteed regular income for me. the pension was pinchin’ enough in those days, but while i was still working, Zelda had helped me to buy an el cheapo handyman special and i’d fixed the salt-damp and installed a skylight over the kitchen and replaced rotten floorboards and had easy mortgage repayments, and few material needs and i soooooo needed to shut myself up in my quiet velvet room and fantasise. perhaps i could write. now i would need the pension to do the therapy, so here was the symptom. i had heard a voice. so give me a pension.
so they did. and i left the city for a hippy commune out in the scrub. only two of the originals stayed, the rest returned to civilisation to have babies, and there were no joiners after that.
annie (not her real name) and i had shared student households in town in the early 1970s while i was dropping in and out of uni. we had been in the feminist political uprising together, tripped together, done Buddha sticks and black hashish together, shared poems and first chapters, even taken a walk on the wild side, though we gave that up long ago. we’d sort of succumbed under pressure – it kept the boys off – but neither of us was much into sex.
the departure of the others left us two absorbed in our farmlet, reading about findhorn, steiner, and nimbin and crystal waters, and tactfully extricating ourselves from the social life of the nearby towns. yes, we’re greenies. hippy ratbags. into peace. love. beauty. happiness. no, we don’t do drugs, that would be wrong. (not half, eh, puff puff pass). when the planetary alignment of the 1980s waved yet another cosmic wand over the planet and from there on it was lights, action and the bewyderbeest is surely earning her keep.
now before you go blaming the marijuana, be aware that most legitimate studies of marijuana are reporting no ill effects from long term intensive use of the herb. she helps you to see what’s there from a range of other perspectives. and if what’s there is an active interface between you and an other-world, you’ll become aware of it by her lights if that’s where your evolution is taking you, and you’re ready willing and psychologically able to go there. not otherwise as far as i can see, although some people are committed to going too far.
if you have several active interfaces, like a lot of phones ringing, you have to answer them or turn them off, or exhaustion sets in. you can’t do this if you can’t get awareness so our subliminal, or subconscious, interfacery gets manipulated by other worldly beings and transcendental ones and all sorts of others who may or may not be aware of each other, and who, if aware of each other, may vie for possession either in a civilised way or by theft, predation, or by defeating rivals. and among the many there are wars, marriages, intercultural contracts, education systems, churches and religious continua, soul groups, spirit guides, gangs of rebels, task forces, trouble shooters and all sorts, trade agreements, slave trades, rival police forces promoting rival regimes of compulsory peace and all manner of negotiations. many of them offer afterlife options, or are afterlife destinations perforce, and some of these (a diminishing number we hope) are punitive – nasty little hells created by smug saints to torture the souls of heretics and sinners. they don’t not exist just because the mainstream, presided over by zaphod beeblebrox himself, don’t see them. we have to find our way round. we have to make new maps. there are a million otherworlds, o my fellow earthlings, and ours is just one of them. perhaps it’s no more significant than any of the others. it seems unlikely to me that it would be. but perhaps we’re some kind of vital organ of gaia and she needs us to heal our sphere. anyway, she seems to be rallying!
but to complicate matters, there were space people.
day four: eating the magic fairy food.
before i can tell you about the space people, i have to explain about the aborigines. our land is a flat expanse of limestone with dongas and patches of soil deep enough for small eucalypts. sandalwoods are pioneering the limestone, where very young, embryonic soils are forming from wind-silt carried from inland and deposited over the bed of an ancient sea. the bedrock is often visible. the rainfall is low. the wildlife is mostly still native, with kangaroos, echidnas and wombats dominating among the mammals; crows, cockatoos, raptors and parrots among the birds, goannas, snakes, dragons and skinks among the reptiles. they move among spear-grass, acacias and low-growing shrubs and herbs with no common names. the only exotic inhabitants living here before we arrived were sheep and horses. the last human inhabitants were aborigines, the goanna people, noted for their skill in catching and communing with and magically managing goannas. they’d been doing it for a long time and there was an aeons thick patina of their enchantment over the land. every tree, stone, bush, pebble, wildflower, bird, lizard, snake, roo, emu, place, patch of moss, and donga had its fairies, ghosts and spirit people and with a few significant exceptions, they were all aborigines, potent with aborigine magic.
and they were deeply interested in us, indeed they were.
partly because they were all around us and came crowding up to us, and imbued the whole place with their spirit, and gathered around our campfire at night, and followed us around in the scrub calling to us, coaxing and fetching us into their care, because some of them knew us and had assignations with us, as spirit guides, teachers and overseers of the peace-process between our races, and partly because we were consciously connecting with the land, taking a close, semi-scientific interest in the fauna and flora and their relationships to the land and eating the plants known to be edible and trying the herbs for their medicinal effects, they were the first to reach me telepathically. over a period of four or five years, their powerfully insistent will fetched me to rituals and ceremonies and to telepathic exchanges (seldom hostile) that became clearer and clearer. i remote viewed different kinds of them often during periods of trance that they induced – with my total consent, because the guides and teachers were evidently angel-like in the beauty and sweetness of their nature, or god-like in simple dignity and strength, and their magic is very, very beautiful. they were able to make sense to me back then because i was culturally hanging very loose because of the alienation i felt (which is a part of the individuation process, a kind of weaning). at this point it is sufficient to say that they gave me some very important teachings, and if later during the course of this book i refer to aboriginal perspectives, this is where i learnt them.
they aren’t all saintly. the ghosts are just people who once lived here and who stayed close to their old traditional homelands when they died because they still have important parts to play in the life of this land. they have large camps on what i think of as the astral plane – very easy to remote view and if you walk into one you can feel their presences around you. most of them are friendly enough – neighbourly spats aside. they like you if you like them. in those days they were almost the only people here, but over the last thirty years or so more and more local white people are opting for afterlives hereabouts and they too are very frequently sighted, along with their dogs, horses, camels, trucks and buses, because they’re given to gypsying and going walkabout with nothing but a swag and a friendly smile to get them by. it’s not just me seeing it, either, it’s the neighbours too. everyone who lives round here or visits often starts to see ghosts. it’s what the land does to you.
sure it affects some people more than others, and i was fascinated by the effects. i at last associated the times of clear lucid telepathy with crisp clear reception of voices associated with clear vision of an array of other-world personalities with the food we were eating, narrowing it down to the flowers and sweet edible berries of a very common bush, the water-bush, and the pollen-rich blossoms of the prickly moses, the dominant species of wattle. this was confirmed when annie stopped eating them and her telepathy and voices and visions all stopped.
now if this sounds a bit far-fetched, with magic berries hanging on a tree – and they are the prettiest little purple berries, very sweet and nice for jams although perhaps the stones are rather large – and if you eat them you see gods and magical spirit people – you ought to hear what the aborigines say about it. their culture’s survival depends upon us believing what they say they and their specialised seers see and the only way they can do that is by making white people see too, so they work hard at it. the white establishment that says that only golden haired white-faced angels may be real and all the rest are evil, promising only heaven to the devotee of the king of the golden angels and horrific torture forever in hell if you don’t. astoundingly, it is legal to preach this in Australia. but of course, it simply isn’t true, although the church’s hells and heavens are real, as i shall explain later. but they are small insignificant towers in a vast cosmic network of intergalactic dreaming places, and as swallowers and manglers of good souls, they look almighty pathological from certain eschatological perspectives, like pimples or boils on a sick child.
in fairy stories we teach our children to enjoy the idea of magical food, of ‘eat-me’ food and drink that induces an altered state of consciousness. when i first began to build an organic garden, the idea being to use herbs and biological controls to minimise pest infestations while you build fertility, i dived right into the subject of herbs, bought hundreds of them over the years, tasted, tested, and studied them, grew them, propagated them and read up on their history and the history of herbals and herbalism. and with marijuana’s help, i laid for the foundations for a useful magical herbalism, based on communications with plant spirits. i looked at ecology, reading permaculture magazines, explaining how people fit into an ecology, and fully intending health and longevity, i studied nutrition, both global and personal. i read all the arguments for and against vegetarianism, where much was made of the many proofs that what you eat determines your personality, your mindset, your emotionality, moods and attitudes, your physiological responsiveness, your state of consciousness, your temperament, your courage, your perspicacity, your insight, your spirituality and more. one thing is for sure, food plays symphonies on our experientiality. if i get a sense of how i’m feeling now, and take a bit of anything edible and chew and swallow, at the first taste i’ll be in a an altered state of consciousness. try living on bread and cheese for a month and then eat an apple. or imagine giving up coffee, or bread, or sugar. there’s an altered state of consciousness, right? now follow through on that and imagine how much of an altered state of consciousness comes to a culture that is forced to abandon the diet it evolved with and switch to a completely alien diet. the mindset of a people is a product of the land that nurtures them.
i must admit i was in a cultural hand-basket myself, having no knowledge of who my ancestors were, except for a few jokes about leprechauns and my mother’s pride in her father’s having been born within the sound of bow bell and therefore a true cockney. i had heard tommy steele. way cool. but i was very conscious that i chose my food for the expectation that it would maintain me in the state of consciousness that i was finding optimal. i liked a bland, monotonous diet that did not interrupt my meditation, enabling that to accommodate the novelty and extravagance of experience occasioned by reading, thinking, music etc instead. it was perfect for absorbtive reading of books and magazines, and my telepathic fantasm came as it always had done from the books, with souls, saints, fairies etc encountered by engaging with the characters or authors or both of the books. it shifted with the garden fairies towards nuts and fruit, fresh and dried, eggs and milk and herbs with fish sometimes and honey pancakes for variety, home made mead and flower wines. these foods maintained me in a state of consciousness that enabled easy interfaces between me and certain of the garden fairies, witches and spirits that were there. clary sage, sage, marjoram, thyme and parsley, honey, spices, sweet scented flowers and many others were implicated. now cottagers of old, of culpeper’s time, and perhaps the Jacobean era were long accustomed to just such a diet, and they too reported that their reality incorporated other beings that not everybody could see. sometimes they added in mushrooms, which like to push our experiential envelopes, and perhaps marijuana was one of their herbs. there’s no doubt that eating straight from an organic garden captures more of the subtle magic, the volatile vapours and the fleeting flavours that rapidly break down into something stable and less specialised in food that has been harvested, washed packaged and perhaps processed, transported, stored and sold in a shop. you lose the enchantment and it’s the enchantment that counts. so it’s more than a little interesting to me that by reconstructing their diet, i accessed the fairy worlds that they described.
by wiping out subsistence farming and cottage gardens and peasantries generally, and providing establishment approved cuisine only, repressing foods known to push the hidebound establishment envelope, the establishment is imposing limits on states of consciousness. i suppose this too is part of the process, as it gives mainstream people access to a wide range of healthy foods, with the potential to make their own inter-dimensional interfaces, but it still vaunts its bible-promoted, religion hallowed ‘blood of the lamb’, with its known horrendous ill effects on people and societies, its stolen tobacco is still legal despite its horrific health toll, and it still strips the nutrition out of flour and sugar and oversupplies sugar to and beyond the point of disease. the pink elephants of alcoholism have long been laughed into oblivion, and you ain’t got fairies when you ain’t got vitamin e. it attempts to confine reality to what it can deal with by repressing the power to see and limit the range of human experience.
there’s a big difference between the wellsprings of aboriginal wisdom and ours – we’re high strangeness to each other sometimes and that gets very high strangeness on the way across, but there’s a possibility of using the knowledge gained in the experience described above to bridge the gap. it works, i know, i’ve tried it. you go out into the scrub, you eat what they ate, breathe the smoke of the wood they burned, eat their mistletoe, their gum-leaves, their wattle flowers and water bush berries and listen as they listened to the realities around them. buy their music for added impact, and commune with the animals they communed with. you’ll get scoffed at, as they are, by scrupulously politically correct negotiators, steeped in tortured-for-heresy biblery, and maybe even belonging to the church, because they listened to the aborigines’ best efforts to explain their beliefs in their fragmentary english, shook their heads, thought, oh dear, they’re all deluded by their sorcerers, highly imaginative liars who fills their poor ignorant lives full of superstitious dread we must save them all and thread them through the needle eye into heaven. when arundta screams and screams and screams, space ships come quickfella. git this here all sorted out. here. this one. they do big corroborees on the astral plane. they have big visions for world intragalactic, intergalactic and cosmic peace. they can step from the distant stars into your room and be visible. deep cosmic beings visit us through trees, the way harry potter’s schoolmates visit each other through the chimneys. not every system codes the time space continuum that our genes code. we can now begin to evolve, and everyone benefits.
they did see ghosts, murrups, spirits and beings of all sorts as a part of everyday experience and they didn’t think of it as an altered state of consciousness. they just saw stuff. they just communed over distance telepathically. they just did all see big magic in corroborees. and now they mostly don’t because they no longer eat their traditional, norm-establishing and maintaining diet.
now, didn’t i say that the space ships did arrive at that time? but wait, no. because one thing happened then more decisive than any other in my life and i’d better mention it. it concerns a mirror, sprigs of the harlequin mistletoe from the sandalwood tree and a pyramid, crudely built out of pine-boards and plastic sheeting and used for a while instead of the tent, which succumbed to the repeated attempts of a half-blind sheep we fostered for a while to climb it, because she mistook it for a hillside, and in preference to the tin shed, which was falling down because of the ghosts, but more later. the tardis was about to come into being.