Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Or Is He Just Crazy?

Here's the original epilogue to my book, DREAM ROADS, which was doing just fine until rudely interrupted by a little dream-adventure worth mentioning. So now the epilogue from Roger Ebert's Ebertfest, next blog down, will make a little more sense, if it's going to. Here's the epilogue to a book written largely in solitude, tho' surrounded by people.

(a bit of the previous, final chapter:)

There's no need to "program" yourself to do all this. It doesn't take a movie-star-strongman's heroic effort, forcing psychic exercises on the 96-Pound spiritual weakling you too often fear you really are. Exercise is good, so long as your main exercise is to pay attention to the reality you alone know.

Most important is your willingness to dream whatever comes, and act sanely on what you can of it.

Or am I just crazy?

Epilogue It's 3:55 P.M. Or is He just Crazy?

Doorside table, Shot in the Dark Cafe, Tucson AZ, usual cigar and espresso and notebook, Ides of August '07 ...these days here feel numbered. My favorite characters have all gone different directions, even Junkiepants, who is on YouTube. Dreamed the other night that I chased the rest of them out of my home.

Eatsy, wearing the same black shoulder strap dress daily, cooking, pulling espresso, is a sweet chub. She is so rooted she must not have been born so much as plucked like a plump fruit from a tree. Once I brought her a rose and gave a dillydally speech declaring she alone did I love! And no other! Here's your rose.

"You're a lying cocksucker," the twenty-year-old replied neutrally. Months later I recalled that to her. She didn't remember. I reenacted it. "Yeah, you're a lying cocksucker," she repeated, judiciously. I agreed. Always agree with anyone who sounds rooted.

We sat together on her break yesterday, where I'm sitting right now. I flirted a nonsense observation to her, adding I didn't want her to think I was crazy for it.

"You ARE crazy, Tom," she replied, neutral, judicious, rooted.

"You're right, I AM crazy, but... this thing is sane!"

My joke played on a dream I'd had of her and two glasses of water that she was trying to balance. Is that sane of me? In my gravest parental tones, I've assaulted myself with rationale about what I've been up to all this time.

"You. Are. Telling. People that you live out what you DREAM AT NIGHT??

"Are you Ka-rrrrrrrrrrAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZY???”

"Just how much more an irresponsible, unwashed old hippie do you mean to be, young man?"

My father would have been blunter. "Great Scott!" he'd have said, invoking an expletive from the Civil War. That's all he would have advised. Still, he showed up in a dream two months before he died to say goodbye, pleased to be done with life. He pointed out that my eldest brother was going to die in a year. One year later, that too happened. Wide awake, the Old Man wouldn't recall a thing about it. "Great Scott!" he would suggest. That's how engineers are.

What craziness I have visited upon my son, Ben, who has put up with me and this since his birth? I'll leave a slot here for his answer and put it in later. What say, young man? Is your strange old dad crazy for following what he dreams at night?

(Ben replies) "It's funny because I sneaked into your Yahoo e-mail the other day and found this other essay of yours about being crazy! Here are my thoughts, I saved them:

"...I think cultural/psychological rigidity is the product of institutional saneness.

---Wow. And he's my only son, too.

"You old Obe-Wan Kenobi sonofabitch, in this strange place where SANENESS has become the ultimate personal sin, but the best manner of societal compliance -- I'd say you're an arch fuckin' criminal (with Joe Pesci Mafia accent)."

---That's my boy!

Back to the cafe here and now. Meant to to sip espresso and sketch an epilogue about being crazy.

Where Eatsy sat yesterday, the only table open today, now sits a crazy man. Red's a banged-up skinny old fellow, stringy grey locks and straggly beard, a haunted look and a nicked forehead from falling off his crutch drunk. He looked up. Welcome, sit, he nodded. I did. His crutch is leaned against the wall next to the seat. He's looking at a magazine and muttering quietly. We like each other. I'm jotting all this down as we sit across from each other.

Legend has it Red was a physicist who lost his mind. It went "sproi-yoy-yoinnng!" one day and hasn't been the same since. That's a nice legend.

Later, I found out it was pretty close to true. He was a nuclear specialist in the Navy. Red is now scribbling some indecipherable symbols onto that magazine page. He's muttering with discovery as he writes.

"Barren? Barren. That's it," he says, glancing at me for confirmation. You bet, Red, I wink.

"Volkswagen..." he continues, "barkus. Barkus... highly screwed. Highly screwed." Barren, Volkswagen, barkus, highly screwed. No doubt Red's right.

At this penlight point in time Red's in full-dream speech, stringy grey head tilted back in sudden high revelation, eyes wide like Frankenstein, straggly jaw waggling importantly, hands gesturing: Stand by for important transmission.

"They're planning to take over this country, is what..."

"...that's the law, there's punishment. That's the law..."

"They'll vaporize you, BOOM. We're seventy five percent water. BOOM. High red count, low white count..." Red quickly scribbles a formula on his magazine. I'm scribbling this from across our table.

Red's an excellent lecturer, with his gestures and expressions. Replace the gibberish with a coherent curriculum and you've got a really good physics prof right there. But who is he lecturing?

I'm not sure Red --

"Perry Mason! Perry Mason. J. Edgar Hoover! Well, sure!"

-- pays much heed to what he's telling the air and me. I sure do. Like Red's, my thoughts flash along in a speed-blurred matrix from reality to dreams to associations and back; sometimes I'll take a few hours trying to write out things that occur in less than a flick of a camera lens, mentally and emotionally. Red has this down to a simple formula of coded inscriptions on his magazine. I hear the employees here have saved dozens of Red's scrawlings on magazines, in the back room. They think of them as the art of a crazy man.

So there are now two crazy men seated at this table: Red quietly lecturing into the air and scrawling secret salient points across his magazine, and me scribbling hastily along about him and dreams in my notebook. I write to you while Red lectures his equally imaginary audience.

I want a glass of ice water. "Be right back," I say, into the midst of his muttering. "Okay," he replies, not missing a beat of his sermon of subconsciousness. He's been perfectly aware of me all along.

This crazy is interesting. Both our audiences are in some other reality, remote from this time and place. Red lets me listen in to his broadcast. I'm not telling him what I'm writing to you.

Most of us talk to each other mentally before and after we open our mouths, picking automatically from our thoughts what to say -- and often, deciding afterward what we'd have said better. We broadcast our raw thoughts invisibly, with no more awareness of it than sleepwalkers. Were we to start speaking those chunks of raw thought out loud we'd call ourselves crazy. Yet it's easier to follow Red's muttering than what most of us think across the course of a minute, hardly mindful that we're thinking. Most of us are even less aware of our dreams, which frequently adjust these associative monologues, or attempt to.

"You'd have to be three percent" -- Red's scrawling the figure on the magazine page now -- "you'd have to be three percent of the population... and that's bullshit. Total bullshit." He crosses out the figure. "Hell, five years ago the Pentagon -- well, it depends on what your religious beliefs are."

Damn straight, Red, it all depends on what your religious beliefs are. He gets up now.

"I'll be back," he says.

"Okay," I say.


We presently live in a culture where taking guidance from dreams is considered crazy. I have a friend from a respected academic family, a stylishly lapsed Episcopalian, who considers herself among the cutting edges of popular “spirituality.” She wrote to me that it's "obsessive" to jot down dreams daily. So, she never will.

She is crazy, by clinical standards to which she’s been and so diagnosed. She confided to me recently that the CIA is drilling holes in her basement. This is only the latest in twenty years of fantasies; the first one I heard, from her husband twenty years ago, was that he was poisoning her tea a little every day. I'd stop and discuss this some more, but nah...

I would like you all to try being this crazy. I don’t mean refusing to call the county hole-drilling department or driving yourself nuts trying to solve the world's problems at a table in a funky old cafe, I mean paying attention to your nightly dreams and what meets your daily attention in comparison. Routinely “crazy,” relative to the going wisdom of the day.

Current political “sanity” dictates that we must keep more useful nuclear weapons ready to launch at "terrorists" hiding among hundreds of millions of ordinary, peaceable people. The peaceable people are supposed to understand that threatening them with instant extinction is a reasonable precaution for us. We annihilate peaceable people only when it comes to achieving the right brand of peace.

The religious literal-minded expect that launching these massively destructive weapons will "serve God" in ending the world in a mighty conflagration, obliterating all these nice peaceable people who have, unfortunately, erred by not loving this God to their satisfaction.

Neither proposal comes of sanity. If we must all be crazy, I'd rather spend my madness exploring my own dreams and I'd rather you did, too.

The End, Beginning, or Middle


Blogger charlieboy said...

A smart guy like you must be bored to tears with all of this "blogging" and "tweeting".

Found you today while searching SETH quotes on my iPod in a restaurant in Revelstoke BC, Canada.

I loved your "take" on the way many have distorted SETH.

I enjoyed your verbal bantering with that "truth seeker", Shawn so much that I pulled out the chapters on Natural Hypnosis and will begin in earnest that work.

I'm writing because I feel you might find this guy a "breath of fresh air".

Watch this documentary for insight into how our world "might" evolve.

To me it sounds pretty much what SETH described as having begun by 2075 after the 3rd personality of you-know-who completes his task.



And feel free to write if it hits you as pretty fucking awesome!


PS - if not, then I do not know why I was so intent on sending it. If so, maybe you could at least pass it on.

8:43 PM  
Blogger Tom Dark said...

I put the documentary up on my browser, don't know when I'm going to find an hour and a half to watch it.

Shawn never did get into it. Finally I checked in on him last year, he was in a pretty bad way. Well, all that stuff WORKS. It's been a study trying to figure out why people just don't use it, and particularly, why waste perfectly good money on useless blabberers like those "Former ESP Class Students" selling hot air?

Have had a dream-tracking hobby going on about the 3 big guys for some time now. Big guy number 2 was born in '89 or '90, has some followers now as a young man; number 3 is still a kid, family recently escaped from western Sudan to the other side of the continent. The villagers knew who He was before he was born.

9:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I chuckled at your use of the term "blabberers" because when listening to one of them go on and on about what HE thought about what Seth meant I got the same sense...just pouring hot air.

And when he started inviting members of his "lonely hearts club" to join him in the dream state I knew I had "had enough".

Regarding Jacque Fresco: you can find a 3 minute trailer for that movie, which was released in 2006. Sadly, Fresco, despite his genius as an inventor has zero understanding of the mystical, magical aspects of human personality.

But, wow, what neat glimpse of a probable future he has designed for others to run with!

Speaking of you-know-who, on the day I started in earnest the practice of NH (thanks for the reminder) I relistened to the Moody Blues masterpiece of 1970...A Question Of Balance.

Seems they, too, we're searching...wondering when and who will show up.

Intriguing stuff, Mr. Dark.

2:11 PM  
Anonymous Tom Dark said...

Well, that's the thing. I visit people in dreams all the time. Just the other night I visited my artist and old dream-experiment pal Ben in Australia, looked around his shed and noted these emerald-green beer bottles with the fancy snap-on caps, like Grolsch beer. I e-mailed him and said this. Something he was saving for a project, I thought.

Ben sent me back a photo of these Grolsch beer bottles he was saving in his shed for a project. Hadn't heard from him in well over a year. In reality didn't even know he had a "shed." Nothing up my sleeve.

Started experimenting in full oh so many years ago. Far bigger "wows" than just seeing some beer bottles somebody's saving for a project. What anyone will discover is that the "secret" is merely to pay attention to what you're dreaming. This happens constantly, constantly.

So self-aggrandizing assholes such as you've mentioned are far more in the way than any use to learning what can be done. Plus, they want your money and should be hung for that. Yer so fuckin' smart, let's see you make your money without fleecing really gullible people. It's what I did. Still do. Once you realize stuff like this, it seems ridiculous not to have been doing it all along. You can save yourself a LOT of trouble. What's the hold-up? Also part of my study.

I started watching the video interview with Jacque, but couldn't stay interested. Maybe some of his ideas will be really valuable, some won't, and there's a website you'd like, with all kinds of ideas from 'way back about what the future would be like nowadays. I THINK it's called retrofuture.com but don't quote me.

6:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Tom...thanks again for being the catalyst to resuming NH work...yes, indeed it works :: and I agree with you that it's puzzling as to why SETH readers seemed to have missed it :: me included. (Jane as well, it seems by her untimely demise)

Whenever I think of my successes & triumphs it's always preceded by thinking and planning for the unfolding event.

Been doing it since I was a kid.

Yet, for the stuff that's NOT working I forget I can change up my thinking just like that...and poof...all the bad stuff recedes.

Regarding Fresco, I agree he's hard to listen to...he is most definitely NOT a very compelling personality :: too bad the director of that feature length documentary chose to plunk him into the opening.

If you scroll through you'll get to the good parts where his ideas make a lot of sense, such as "meaningful education" replacing the stuff we have now...by meaningful he means "dedicated to problem solving"..so much of societies problems could be solved with a dedication to fixing things instead of preserving the special interests of the status quo.

I love his idea of replacing boring work with machines.

For years now I've been feeling a tinge of sadness at seeing young and old slaving away at boring, repetitive jobs, such as serving and making food in restaurants.

He's got plans for self-erecting buildings, homes that evolve as people do, underwater transportation systems and more.

Not sure why I'm bringing all this to YOUR attention, but I've said my piece.

I'll be signing off now as I really don't like this blogger stuff :: and the stupid requirement to prove I'm not a robot...and those dreaded captchas that are often unreadable by the very humans they want to make sure we are.

Send me a note in the dream state if you want.

I'll check one last time for any reply...if not...all the best!


2:00 PM  
Blogger Tom Dark said...

There's a boring, repetitious job I did that was worth writing about here on this blog. Look for "Mrs. Doty" if you're interested. Meanwhile there really ARE a lot of things I'd rather shovel shit than do for a living; some might be construed as glamorous from the outside.

Nah, ya don't just go gallivanting around into people's dreams. There's a bit at the nirvikalpa site where I visited Shawn. Turned out all I described was the case, but Shawn didn't notice a thing. It's very rare that people do; it'll be that way until it's incorporated as a "normal" social thing... and when people don't lie about it, which they're prone to do as things are.

Been suggesting "CNH" to people for years, who've never heard of it. When they TRY it, something always happens. When they don't, the excuse usually indicates that they're trying to outsmart themselves.

Last try, an 80-something retired Episcopalian deacon, who'd had cancer for 20-odd years. He DID try it. His next tests came back negative for cancer, and it was 2 years this June, no cancer.

I've tried this with a few people with serious stuff. Chapter by verse, those who won't try have gotten worse. I figure they "need" the drama and crisis to play out. But one gal diagnosed with hep "C" tried it, next doctor visit, it was GONE, never returned. "The body, left alone, knows how to heal itself."

Don't get me goin' about education. What an effing mess.

Have put in these items and comments 'cuz a lot of people from Roger Ebert's blog show up here. They're very, very "normal." So far I can hear the silence. It's they who seem stranger to me than I to them, however.

7:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Tom.
Work out how to self-publish your DREAM book already. Pretty obvious the Jane died early to avoid the guru thing, thereby martyring herself to ensure the authenticity of the work. Jane's ESP group didn't listen at all. You can tell by the lame questions they asked. I wish she had lasted long enough to get the "Christ Book" done. That would have caused a shitfight! What happened to all of Rob's artwork? "Record your dreams" is the best advice to give anyone. Thanks Tom, you remind me of a friend of mine...

12:52 AM  
Blogger Tom Dark said...

Who is this really?

Knowing the market as I do, I'm not in a hurry. It's a huge task picking out which are the funnest AND most illustrative anyhow. I didn't think so 25 years ago, but I do now.

Anyhow, my whole point is to get people back to telling their dreams like they used to, and quit paying frauds to hand them a false conception of themselves on a platter. Those people need real jobs, if there are any openings for psychic vampires lately.

Will post another here shortly. I think.

10:00 AM  
Blogger Tom Dark said...

Forgot your other question. No idea what Laurel's doing with Rob's artwork. I'd sit on it and evnetually go to an actual art dealer, not one of these "former ESP class member" greedheads. That doofus Ricky was selling prints WAAAAAY overpriced, last I looked. Rob used to bitch and bitch about how cheap psychics sold doodle-paintings for 15 grand because they were "psychic."

Rob bitched about money a lot. But do you know what that knucklehead did? He died sitting on a stack of comic books worth enough to buy a private island.

Before WWII Rob's commercial job was drawing the first Superman and Captain America comics, see. He had a whole box of 'em in his basement in pristine condition.

I called a collector friend who, for one thing, owns a full size Carl Barks painting of Scrooge McDuck. He started with a $15,000 bid for one of those Captain America comics. Rob wouldn't even go down to the basement to check on them. Knucklehead.

10:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hahaha! knucklehead. Is that who Rob was, a "loveable knucklehead"?

Really, my name is Peter. I've been reading the Seth stuff and doing the exercises for years. I find your take on things intuitively "real". I live in Australia, so the only contact I've ever had with Seth/Jane/Rob, was a beautiful letter from Rob in 1992, replying to my letter. I contacted Rick a few times, and the vibe was "give me your money, you nobody", so I appreciate your candour. What was Sue like? I like her books, but she comes over as a hybrid space cadet/knowall. The friend I mention records all his dreams, and calls himself an athiest, but is in fact the most spiritual guy I know (and a great guitarist). I always wondered what the war did to Rob. Would he have been more relaxed, and not pressured Jane about money/work so much otherwise? The hard part for me is that it can take years just practicing ONE Seth exercise, and there are hundreds. So many questions! Thanks for replying to my post too. And what the hell is Natural Hypnosis anyways? Cheers

5:58 PM  
Blogger Tom Dark said...

Well... in a private session Seth opined that Rob had an ego like the bark of a tree. But "blockhead" seems kinda mean, so "knucklehead" will do. Yes, a lovable fella, what you'd think of as a good man, a good neighbor. Dunno if the war did anything to him. He didn't have any stories. He was a wrench jockey for airplanes.

First thing I told Ricky Stack when I met him was that he shouldn't be "teaching Seth" at all. When I first met Rob at his house there was a severe complaint about this greedy self-aggrandizer ("hail me!" said Seth of him) from Australia. The people wanted their money back and expected Jane and Rob to do that, as tho' Ricky were some sort of representative of them.

Having spent 4 years with Sue, virtually 24/7, I say your impression is fair dinkum minus the hysterias I'd say would get the truth out of a wicked terrorist quickler than waterboarding. Lemme find that URL. Here it is: http://bit.ly/ORWBNP

I don't think any of the ESP class members read any more of those books than she did either. Also on that site's the result from trying "Practice Element 2." I continue doing the various.

What??? Concentrated Natural Hypnosis? You don't know it? Dig around that Nirvikalpa site, it's there. Will save me the writing.

Got a pal in Oz named Ben who was part of my long distance dream-experiment group for some years. Also another lady from Oz named Michele. I started it just when I wrote that interview for that fella Shawn. Heard from him the other day.

7:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Tom.
Thanks for the reply. Ahh, I know what CNH is. I've been doing it for years, I just forgot that it had a name. Do you teach the dream experiment stuff? I would like to know more about what you do. Is paying attention in the dream universe enough? Is pre-sleep suggestion the basis of all experiments? If you have the time to give me some pointers, it would be much appreciated. I also have questions about Native American dream practices, which I know very little about. Am I wasting your time with stoopid questions? Peter

9:44 AM  
Blogger Tom Dark said...

Right! For only US$1200, I'll send you the first five lessons of my great new secret method, "How To Pay Attention The Tom Dark Way"!

Act now and I'll send you FREE an authentic facsimile of a genuine Native American Injun Dream Headband from the Hunga Bunga tribe of Ancient Junga Munga!

Yeah, I've got a bunch o' stories written up. "Dreaming my Way to Roger Ebert" is an easy one, here on the blog. It's there 'cuz he's a big celebrity.

The fewer rules you strap onto yourself about it, the better off you'll be. You learn it all the same way ducklings learn how to swim and infants learn how to walk. They already know. This is no time for "experts."

Good GOD the field is rife with frauds and nitwits. It really is. So, I just gave you all the advice you'll ever need. Write 'em down like your pal does. Don't interpret 'em. Let 'em sit there until they just jump out at you... see my note to somebody else about Ben and the Grolsch Beer bottles, 3 or 4 comments down in this thread.

Happens all the time. Just watch for it. Yes you can direct it.

10:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, I know. The questions arise from not fully trusting the process. It's amazing how when you just let it happen it does just happen. I'll stick with intuition, application and dedication, and some fun along the way. Never a dull moment in the dream state. I'd still like to read the book one day.... Cheers

10:22 PM  
Blogger Tom Dark said...

That's the idea. Yeah, I'll have it done one day. Hopefully not posthumously.

8:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey there, You have done an incredible job. I will certainly digg it and personally suggest to my friends. I'm confident they will be benefited from this site.

7:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Couldn't have put it more accurately myself.

8:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your way of explaining all this is in fact lucid, anyone is able to understand it, Thanks a lot.

6:40 AM  

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