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February 12, 2011

RIGHT OF PASSAGE - Part Fourteen - Magical, Mystery, Truth

My condolences to Algernon, but it wasn't Mary Jane who destroyed me.

Smoking marijuana was an experiment, because of the misconceptions, misinformation, legality issues, and dealing with the black market. But it wasn't my undoing.

Marijuana wasn't always known as that, but rather, prior to the 1930's it was called ganja. It's scientific name is cannabis, with subspecies like indica and sativa. It's origin is, as best I recall the Andes. It's use goes back thousands of years. Yet little is known about it's use, as modern archaeologists generally focus more on acceptable mind altering substances, like alcohol. Not always, but more often.

Hah, but did I say I "was destroyed"? If so I got well ahead of myself. The truth is, sadly at almost 25 my life flipped, as in a train wreak, and I was pretty much destroyed. But there is much - hundreds of years within 4 years that my life was rich and flowing, torturous and painful, exotic and fulfilling. I learned a lot in those 4 years... age 20 - 24; experienced a lot. Yes, I was Algernon, and at 25 i lost much that i gained, but I didn't die, and I didn't forget everything.

One important goal during those years was building "Personal Power". I read most of the Carlos Castaneda novels. "The Teachings of Don Juan". A way to oneself... a way to see...

Personal Power and Not Doing were two important lessons. One needed power to survive, and the ability to not do, so as to be a individual. There was much more, the ability to SEE, which is hard to explain... more than seeing auras, though that is a small part.

One might think me MAD, back then, but it was all mainstream, even if it was fringe reality.

The facts are:

I went from being bullied, shy, introverted to the person people came to for help; I had many, many friends, which I learned one night when throwing a party and over 50 people turned up at my apartment...

Initially, I quit college in 1974, but when getting my custodial job, resumed taking classes, but changed my major from electronics tech to liberal arts. Benefits paid for unlimited courses that i could take, and I did. A few years later when I applied for a BA degree, instead of the normal 60 credits to transfer, I had over 90... which shaved a full semester off getting my BA.

I was hardly introverted any longer... quite the opposite. Which when considering the mid 70's was a sexual revolution, and it seems everyone was having sex with everyone, at least for some people, I was one of those people. I was one of those people who hoped to meet and marry his soul-mate too. Who hoped for success. I worked hard, 3 - 11 M-F cleaning the Fine Arts Building, and on the side, I wrote thousands of words, and had seemingly unending encounters with so many interesting people.

In a way now many years later there is this force pushing on me to abandon those years, with shame and guilt. After-all, I smoked marijuana and ate pot brownies often. I had sex with several women, all whom I loved. I studied witchcraft, or "White Magic", and admit to a mushroom or two and a bit o' windowpane. I often walked in the woods - there being a college park adjacent to the campus, with a hundred acres of trees and park space. It was heaven.

And it was hell...

As my parents, my mother in particular was at war with my newfound world. I had little defense against my mother, although I could plead my case with my father, who understood me, to a good amount, but ultimately, he would support my mother, who, like Nurse Ratchet, in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest", she saw to it that any heaven I might achieve, she would take it away... and she did. In June 1979.

Prior to that night, I discovered the world is really a pretty remarkable place. Painful in places, yes, but much pleasure to enjoy too.

I'm 56 now, and for the past 30+ years I've wanted to tell my story. I've not been able to. And today, little remains, other than one or two close friends from back then... it's almost like it really never was...

Next Time: But It Was...

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