“Death makes angels of us all and gives us wings where we had shoulders smooth as raven’s claws.” Doors lead singer and Old Soul Jim Morrison got his wings on this day in 1971. He was 27. Jim left us these thoughts to ponder today: “I am interested in anything about revolt, disorder, chaos, especially activity that seems to have no meaning.” and “Film spectators are quiet vampires.” and “I believe in a long, prolonged, derangement of the senses in order to obtain the unknown.” and “People fear death even more than pain. It’s strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death. At the point of death, the pain is over. Yeah, I guess it is a friend.” and “The appeal of cinema lies in the fear of death.” and “When you make your peace with authority, you become authority.” and “I see myself as a huge fiery comet, a shooting star. Everyone stops, points up and gasps “Oh look at that!” Then- whoosh, and I’m gone…and they’ll never see anything like it ever again… and they won’t be able to forget me – ever.” That seems to be going to plan so far, Jim. What’s with deathday?
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Since Carlos was such a large influence on my early shamanic thinking, today I honour his day of ascension in 1998 after 72 years. He knew about it for years in advance. Don Juan showed him his death. Instead of quoting Carlos – he wrote a dozen books to do that – here is a short story I wrote called Carlos, Neil and Me. On a high hill in southern Saskatchewan next to a stone buffalo effigy, I met Carlos Castaneda. He was alone and naked except for a guitar. He sat cross-legged on the dry dun grass and strummed, trying to remember the words to some old Neil Diamond song. The sun was in his eyes. He clenched them shut against the heat, the fury, the bullshit! He asked if he could have my car. I told him it was rented. “Rented!” he exclaimed. “Everything is rented!” with a wave of his hand to express inclusion. “We’re all rented!” I gave him the car. When he started it, that old Neil Diamond song was playing on the radio.
“I am…I said, to no one there,” sang Neil.
Carlos left me two bags of groceries and drove away.
“Everything is a circle,” said the buffalo effigy.