INTERVIEW — TAPE #60, SIDE #2
Q: Mark Russell Bell
T: Terrance Boykin, friend
S: Sean Daniels, acquaintance at automotive store
D: Dontae Beauregard, acquaintance at automotive store
A: Sari Domash of The Rosetta Stone
R: Rose Bauer of The Rosetta Stone
Q: Your battery’s dead?
T: Yeah. I left my lights on.
Q: Do you know how many times this happens to people I interact with?
T: Really? And why?
Q: What do you mean why? Battery.
T: No. I just said I wonder why.
Q: Are you sure you left your lights on?
T: Yeah, I did. (“I”) Just looked at them and — I did. I saw them.
Q: You just ‘forgot.’ (“UUH”) I don’t have jumper cables but I have an auto club card.
T: Mine is out. You know what? I might have some in the back.
Q: Okay. (“WE”)
T: Pull up.
Q: Where’s your car? So I’ll just pull up behind you.
T: Yep. You can pull up next to me — or in front of me.
Q: Do you think you left your lights on —
T: I just saw them.
Q: — through your subconscious mind
T: I do. I’ve done it. I did it three weeks ago. Sometimes when it’s raining I’ll turn the lights on. And, see, my lights are on my thing and sometimes I hit them accidentally and leave them on.
Q: By the way, your last thing that you said to me (before discovering the dead battery): “Mark, take care.” I can’t tell you how many times people always say that to me.
T: Oh, I always tell my friends to take care.
Q: But I hear that so many times.
T: Take care. I’ll see you soon. That’s how I always —
Q: Well, I know but I’m just telling you — when the other people say it, they mean like “Take care (of your chemical imbalance).”
T: Like ‘Oh you poor thing. Your losing your mind. Take carrrreeee.”
T: I didn’t mean that.
Q: No, I know. Not yet, anyway.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: TERRANCE DIDN’T HAVE ANY JUMPER CABLES SO I DROVE HIM TO A NEARBY STORE TO BUY SOME. WHILE WAITING FOR TERRANCE I INTERVIEWED A YOUNG MAN WHO HAD ASKED FOR A SMALL AMOUNT OF MONEY. I WANTED TO SHOW THAT PEOPLE WHO ASK FOR CHANGE ARE NOT ALL DRUG ADDICTS.)
Q: Hi. So what’s your name?
Q: Sean. And last name?
Q: As Daniel in the Bible.
S: Yeah. (small laugh)
Q: And you’re a mechanic.
Q: Do you service Mazdas?
Q: Okay. And so what’s your phone number where I can reach you?
Q: That’s (213)?
Q: It’s lucky I have my tape recorder with me because I’m doing a book which is sort of like a New Age Bible about the supernatural and Hollywood. And how long have you been living here in Los Angeles?
S: Two weeks.
Q: Two weeks. So you’re here trying to make a new start for yourself?
Q: And — well, I don’t know when my book is coming out but this will be good publicity for you. (“ORAL”) Then, I’ll try to remember to use you. Even though I usually use — his name is Dr. Bob. He’s been very good but — do you have, like, a garage or something? Or do you just come out?
S: Yeah. You beep me and I call you. And then you tell me where you’re at and I’ll fix your car.
Q: Wow. Okay. (“MY”) My friend right now — (“AA”) his battery’s dead so he’s in there buying jumper cables.
S: Well, maybe his alternator’s bad or — (“YEAH” “OR IT COULD”)
Q: Well, he knows he left the lights on. So — and are you a Christian? (“OR” “ONE”)
S: Non-denomination. Yeah. (“I”)
Q: And so what do you think of — why did you choose Los Angeles?
S: There’s money. I’m making pretty good money.
Q: That’s good. (“THAT’S WHEN”) So, anyway, it was nice meeting you.
Q: And since I’m transcribing all of my tapes maybe you’ll be in one of my books (“HOPE”) so keep that phone number.
Q: Thank you.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I ENCOUNTERED ANOTHER PERSON IN NEED AND GAVE HIM $1 AND THE 800 NUMBER FOR FOOD AND HOUSING REFERRALS.)
Q: Can I interview you too for my book? What’s your name?
D: Dante. Hey, check it out. I’m $1.25 short. Can this interview take $1.25? I’m a dollar and a quarter short. Well, let’s do the interview first.
D: Go ahead — wait, let me get my stuff. Hey, man, if you want anything (“NOW” “HE’LL DIE”) my story’s going to be in all the papers, huh? (“AS WELL”)
Q: I’m writing a book that’s sort of about Hollywood and the supernatural. Now you say your name is Dante — as in Dante’s inferno.
D: No no — Dontae — it’s French. Dontae Beauregard.
Q: Okay. Well, it still sounds like Dante to me. (“YEAH” “HH HOOK” “FOR”)
D: Like General Beauregard. (“O”)
Q: Okay. French.
D: French like Louisiana. Like Creole. Like —
Q: Is that where you’re from?
D: No no. I’m from here. (“MA”) My grandma. (“STOP”)
Q: And what is that name Beauregard?
D: What does it mean? It says ‘beautiful’ I guess. I don’t know. Beauregard. I never — I mean it’s just a name.
Q: Well you are very good-looking.
D: Hey alright you know. (“I”)
Q: So (“WOO”) you’re a little bit down on your luck now.
Q: So what do you want to do eventually?
D: Work. Go back to school. (“OH NO”)
Q: And what do you want to do?
D: Study to be an electrician.
Q: Well, you know exactly what you — my book is about helping people because I can’t believe that people don’t help people. It’s like if everyone of these people would just give you a dollar your day would be much better.
D: Oh yeah. No — but it ain’t like that. (“I GOT”) Too much shit, you know what I’m saying? Like these fools looking at me right here?
Q: This is my friend Terrance.
D: No, (“OH”) I’m talking about these fools.
Q: No, I’m just kidding.
D: Alright. No, I’m just trying to get another $1.25 to get something to eat.
Q: I’m just trying to tell people in my book whenever they see a homeless person just give him a dollar or —
D: Yeah. How did you know I was homeless? (“WHAT”) Some — what —
Q: Are you homeless?
D: How’d you know?
Q: I didn’t know.
D: Oh okay.
Q: But, you know, if you call that 800 number that’s for local public service agencies, (“THEY’LL HELP”) they have to help you.
D: Well, if they have to help me — I’ve got 20.
Q: Okay, well, here’s another $1.25.
D: Alright. (“A”)
Q: So good luck. You’ll need it. We all need it.
D: Okay, thanks.
( . . . )
T: . . . pull out of this parking place.
Q: Okay, Terrance. Go ahead.
T: I grew up on Dante Street in Chicago.
Q: As in Dante’s Inferno?
T: I don’t know. (“DANTE”)
Q: As in “Disco Inferno.”
T: As in Dante Mosely, the guy I was in love with all through high school.
Q: Really? (“HHH HHH HHH HHH”) Was that his name?
T: Dante Mosely.
Q: Do you know I interviewed a woman named Doris Moseley for my book.
Q: They both have Mo like Moses — Moseley.
T: Now, Mark, if you like, you can connect every dot in the universe. (laughs)
Q: That’s the whole point. (“DUE TO THE”) Synchronicity. I’m the center of the synchronicity. (“CHRONIZ”)
T: (You can) synchronize everything.
T: Every meal you eat. Every person you come across.
Q: Of course.
T: Nothing is new and everything is connected.
Q: That’s one of the themes of my book. Being at the center of the synchronicity, it’s much clearer to see the synchronicity. And there can only be one center of the synchronicity so wouldn’t it be —
T: No, there are many. I think everyone is the center of their own synchronicity. I think there are many, many centers.
Q: Okay. But —
T: You can’t have one center of — if everything is synchronized then there would be many centers.
Q: I just feel I’m a metaphor — but there’s only one person who owns the Ark of the Covenant, the Holy Grail, the Declaration of Independence. I mean there could only be one person who owns all these things.
T: Mm that’s true. But there are other very, very valuable things on the planet that other people own (“THAT”) — just ‘big deal — Ark of the Covenant. So what? Big deal. The Holy Grail. So what?’ There are more precious things that — (“WHAT IF”) someone owns something from the Buddha or something of —
Q: I own something from the Buddha. (“OR SOMETHING FROM”) My door.
T: — from a historian that — I don’t know — Thomas Edison’s blanket (“OR”) or somebody’s shoes that were — I mean so what?
Q: Well, I probably have (“THESE ARE”) some of those things (“HISTORICAL”) and don’t even know it.
T: These are historical artifacts and nothing more.
Q: Well, what’s wrong with that?
T: Nothing is wrong.
Q: They all prove (“THOUGH”) that I am who I say I am. I’ve got to go here sometime — my God (we’re passing a store called) ‘The Rosetta Stone.’ Oh my God.
Q: I’ve got to go there and buy something. I think right now, after I drop you off, I’m going to go there and buy something. How about that?
T: Do you know since you’re spending all this money maybe you can just spend some of it on me. I need shoes. (laughs)
Q: Well, I just gave that homeless man $2.25. That was all the money (“EIOU”) I had to my name because I have not been to the bank.
T: Well, you can go charge something else.
Q: Exactly. (“I TELL YOU”)
T: I wonder if my restaurant’s still open. (“NO”) The one in the back.
Q: See, I can prove — oh my God. ‘Bella.’ Look at this. What is this? (“HE’LL KNOW”) It’s called Bella Bella Boutique. (“WOMEN”) You have to read my book (“I HOPE MY”) to appreciate the meaning of this.
T: I hope my restaurant is open.
Q: Leo’s — as in Leo the lion.
T: Oh it is. Barbi’s still open. Yay. (“OKAY” “STRAY”)
Q: So, anyway, what was I going to tell you? And, of course, Le Belle Epoque is another Bell.
T: Oh, there’s a Mexican restaurant. (“THERE’S SOME”)
Q: She looked a little like Vanessa. Didn’t that woman look like Vanessa Fleming?
T: Um-huh. Where is she these days?
Q: I don’t know. I can imagine. Okay, well, I am done interviewing Terrance for the day. He has been a very interesting interview guest.
T: Another battery victim.
Q: Exactly. And right now we’re looking at a poster for “12 Monkeys” across the street.
T: (small laugh)
Q: Does it say, “They’re coming”? Well, they’re here.
T: We’re going — (small laugh)
Q: ‘We’re here.’
T: We’re here already.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I TURNED ON THE TAPE RECORDER AGAIN AS WE WERE USING THE JUMPER CABLES TO RECHARGE HIS BATTERY.)
T: I have a perfectly good battery. It’s just that I left the lights on. (“HOW”)
Q: (reiterating unrecorded conversation) But I think that’s a very good thought for my book. Many people go around saying that they’re spiritual but when push comes to shove and that homeless person is there and they don’t give them money — I’m sorry but in my book they are not spiritual.
T: I don’t give them money. (“SO YOU’RE NOT”)
Q: In my book, you’re not spiritual. (“NOT SPIRITUAL”)
T: Not spiritual. I give them money — I don’t give them money! (“WELL LISTEN”)
Q: What do you think when you hear me saying that to you?
T: I think you’re being — (“LESSON”)
Q: I didn’t give them money either until my religious experience.
T: That’s narrow-minded. I used to give them money but I feel like charity is very tricky. You have to be careful. (“NO”)
T: Giving them money, you could help someone destroy themselves too. (“IT’S LIKE”) You know if you’re going to propagate their bad habits you’re not helping them. (“IT’S A MATTER OF”) It’s like I’ve given money to the dolphin or given money at the grocery store — they need to go to the agencies that can help them — not panhandlers.
Q: Well, I also give them the 800 number for public service agencies.
T: Yeah. Maybe I’ll — (“OKAY”) you know what? (“I’LL HE[LP]”)
Q: I’ll give it to you. I have it here.
T: If there was a — (“LIKE”) yeah, it’s like hand them the 800 number and go, “You know you need help. Go get help.” Yeah. (“SO YOU KNOW” “SEE” “NEED HELP”) I’m not going to give them money.
Q: So, Terrance, you can keep that —
T: And I’ll give it to them.
Q: — and give that to homeless people.
T: Okay. Perfect. (“I”) I’m not giving them money.
Q: I usually give them a dollar too as a symbol.
T: That it works.
Q: As a symbol of giving. And love.
T: Because they’re everywhere. It’s like every time I go in the store —
T: I’d be out of $50 a week.
Q: Terrance, (“I”) whenever I see a homeless person I give them a dollar. I don’t even miss it. (“WWW” “YOU KNOW LET’S” “LET’S SAY” “LIKE”) Let’s say something is on sale at the supermarket. Like the margarine is a dollar off.
T: Oh could I keep this?
T: Good because I’ll give it to them.
Q: You can give it to people. Now you have something to give to them.
T: Thank you.
Q: I’m the enlightened one here.
Q: And you are the seeker of wisdom.
T: Mmm. (“I THINK THIS WAS”)
Q: This would be basic Buddhism.
T: I think it’s done.
T: You’re the best. Thank you. You know what? This is perfect because I need to have these in my car and I’ll probably really need it in the future. That’s why —
T: — it happened.
Q: And I have my AAA card.
T: I have it too. I have to get —
Q: Should I turn off my battery before you take them off?
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THERE ARE SPARKS AS HE REMOVES THEM.)
T: No. You can just take them off.
Q: Now that electric shock that happened —
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: WHILE HE HOLDS THE CABLES, THEY STRIKE EACH OTHER AND THERE IS A SIZZLING SOUND.)
Q: Whoops. Watch out. See?!
T: Yeah, you’re right. (“OKAY” “I FORGIVE” “TOGETHER”)
( . . . )
Q: I’m in a place that is a natural for me. The Rosetta Stone. This is a new place, I believe. Is it new?
A: It’s less than a year. That’s new for a store.
Q: And (“SO I’M JUST LOOKING”) I’m going to look around until I find a piece that I really, really love, which is what I always do. I recently went to a place near Universal City called Postobello.
A: Oh, I’ve heard of that. (“IT’S”)
Q: Another place that they have rare old sculptures and things for very modest prices. It’s sort of like the Valley-equivalent of this place here. I just love all these things. My God, you have dragons.
A: Yes. Gargoyles.
Q: I’ve never seen anything like that. The religious symbol is a little much for me.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THERE WAS A GRAPHIC CRUCIFIX WITH CHRIST IN A DISPLAY CASE.)
A: It’s too much. (“YEAH”)
Q: It hits a little too close to home.
A: Anything that you see that you want me to take out — even if you keep asking me — I’ll take it out for you.
Q: Okay. Fine. And what is your name?
A: I’m Sari.
Q: And what does that mean?
A: Well — princess. Like Sarah. The biblical princess. (“RIGHT”)
Q: You might be the reincarnation.
A: Maybe I am. (“UH-HUH”)
Q: Have you ever thought about that? (“YEAH”)
A: I haven’t thought about being the reincarnation of her. No. (“NO”)
Q: Who have you thought about being the reincarnation of?
A: Well, just what I was told. Nobody famous. Just a school teacher from the old South. And an island princess, actually, from many, many years ago.
Q: Right. Okay. (“CAUSE MY — THAT” “ONE OF MY THI[NGS]”)
A: Actually, I was, yeah, because she said I was an island princess. (“RIGHT” “BUT SEE”)
Q: That would fit into your name. And what’s your last name? (“OVITZ”) You don’t want to reveal that? Okay. (“EHH”) I’ll turn off the tape recorder.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: AFTER TELLING HER MORE ABOUT MY WORK SHE AGREED TO TELL ME HER LAST NAME.)
Q: And what does that mean?
A: I have no idea. It’s Russian. It means ‘of the house.’ (she greets some visitors) Hi. Hi, Bruce. Hi, Felix.
Q: ‘Princess of the house.’
A: ‘Princess of the house.’ (“YEAH”) That’s very interesting.
( . . . )
Q: I see something I like. Well, first of all, do you know anything about this little end table here?
A: No. I believe it’s Moroccan. (“DO LIKE”)
Q: (From) the symbols or anything?
A: No, I don’t. What do they tell you? (“THEY DON’T”)
Q: I don’t know. I like them.
A: Do they say anything to you?
Q: They do. I like the camels. I don’t know. (“I”) I like that. (“I’M SO” “THAT ONE”) I also noticed that you even have really old stuff here. Like pre-Colombian potteries. How much are those (very) little pre-Colombian bowls?
A: Okay. (“A”) That little one is $35. That’s older than this. This is missing (“OR” or “ORE”) the bottom. It was like a rose bowl. And that’s $25. (“BU[T] BUT”)
Q: Do you know what they are, though?
A: I have a book on it. I believe that’s called nirite. From the Nirite era. So is this jade piece. This earring is very common. This is more rare. This was a gift given to my boyfriend who is a pre-Colombian art expert and dealer. And he gave me this — these two and this. (“NONE”)
Q: Do you think they’re spiritual pieces?
A: This one is. (“OH WHAT”)
Q: What? You mean the —
A: Well, you see this is the oldest one.
Q: The earring? (“YEAH”)
A: They only had — see — no. This is a pendant. It’s like a bead. All they had was (“IF I”) — the tools were very raw and the stone was very hard to carve. It’s a heart. That’s all they did was make one little carving in there.
Q: Is that a heart?
Q: Oh well I think I have to get — how much is that? (“EHHHHH”)
A: Only $25. (“AA” “N”) This is 14-karat gold here and it’s a pendant. And it flips around.
Q: I see — well — also, I’m — so that and the table I’m really — do you know what these were used as?
A: No. Just bowls. Because the bottom was a bowl — actually I have it at home. I have to glue it together. The glue came apart. He knew it was pre-Columbian because people took the trouble to glue it.
Q: What does pre-Columbian mean basically?
A: That’s before Columbus? Before Columbia.
Q: Well, I like things that (“WERE”) are —
A: I’m not — (“RIGHT”) I forgot. It’s terrible that I can’t remember.
Q: Right. No. That’s okay. I’ve studied it too but I still don’t understand.
A: It’s obvious.
Q: They don’t really know.
A: It’s like before Columbia or before Columbus.
Q: Exactly. It’s a very mysterious time. (“[BE]FORE”)
A: Yeah. It’s, like, in 1492 — before that.
Q: Hearts, though, have symbolic meaning in every religion. Especially Christianity. The heart is always very important. So I bet that would be a nice little pendant. I’m also thinking about that table out there. Do you have any other spiritual pieces that I should be looking at? (“MAC — CULKIN”)
A: Not — I — (“NO ONE’S LYING”) see the — I don’t know if they’re spiritual. I bought this because I fell in love with it.
Q: The cats. Oh yeah. It’s very beautiful. This is like a museum. People don’t understand what you can find in these places.
A: I know. (“AND I”) I’m going to get more and more — you know what? It’s up to you — too individual. I feel like interfering with what I think is spiritual. (“YEAH”)
Q: Let me look around. (“OKAY”) (O)kay, let me look.
A: I’m going to be leaving in a little while. (“OKAY JUST”)
Q: I’ll make a decision quick. (“I JUST WANT”) Okay.
( . . . )
Q: Yeah? (“PLACE” “NO” EXHALE)
A: I have a friend who has given me two elephants with the trunks up, which is a sign of abundance. So I’m going to be bringing a couple into the store and they’re $36.
Q: And how old are they?
A: They’re (“I THINK THEY’RE”) something like — (“EIGHT” “JUM”) little elephant. They come in different sizes and they’re like iron. They look really old.
Q: By the way, you have these “Batman Forever” props.
A: Yeah. (small laugh)
Q: They give me the creeps.
A: A lot of people love them.
Q: No, I know. I have this love/hate relationship going (“WITH”) with the movies. (“BUT ANYWAY”) Now what about this obelisk here? This is very fascinating to me. (“WHAT D[O]”) Do you know anything about this piece here?
A: Rose? Rose, could you come answer this gentleman’s question? Do you know about this piece here?
R: The obelisk?
A: What is it called?
Q: The obelisk. (“YEAH”) I’m fascinated by things Egyptian. (“UM”)
R: It’s just an old piece — a wooden one and then (there’s also) this one. There’s aman that said he collected those and he brought those two in (“HMM”) for me to sell.
Q: I have an Egyptian medallion of Bel-Marduk. (“I’M IN LOVE”) And when I saw it, it looked just like me. (“LISTEN”) Oh my God — by the way, I’m taping for my book. (“WHICH IS A”) It’s sort of like — it’s a long story.
Q: But I think I’m getting vibes from this piece even though I love that Moroccan table. Do you know anything about that Moroccan table?
R: What Moroccan table?
Q: This — this little — (“OH THAT”)
R: Oh, Sari, that’s yours.
A: Yeah, I know.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: IT IS HARD TO DIFFERENTIATE ‘R’ AND ‘A’ FOR REMAINDER OF THIS PORTION OF TAPE.)
R: Oh yeah. No, I (don’t know about that) —
Q: I can’t decide between the obelisk and the Moroccan table.
R: Well, they’re both kind of like — (“BLAIR” “HER BABY”) how much is — (“LINE BY” “SUZY” “PLATEAU”) $75 — (“VVV” “IF I WAIT” “TWO-FIFTY”) $50.
Q: And what is this (“I”) period from?
R: I’m not really sure. (“OH YEAH” “IN HERE” “PLAY THE GAME” “YEAH”) Made in Italy. (“BORN”)
A: It’s probably worth more.
R: Wellington —
Q: Wellington. (“MY” “RI[NG]” “SUPPORTED BY THE RIGHT” “YEAH” “HOWARD” “NOT SURE” “RUSH”) Well, you know, I think I’ll take the table today and then I’ll think about the other pieces.
Q: When are you going to get those elephants in? (“ABOUT LIKE”)
R: In about two weeks. (“NOW WE”)
Q: Okay. (“TODAY” “IF SHE STILL HA[S]”) Wait, you take Visa, don’t you?
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE WORD TODAY APPEARED ON THE COMPUTER SCREEN WHEN I WAS TRANSCRIBING THIS AROUND 2 A.M. ON APRIL 9, 1997.)
Q: Oh, okay.
R: We tell people to go to the cash machine across the street. (“OKAY”)
Q: Okay, fine. How much was this again?
Q: I’ll just go by the bank. (“THERE” “OKAY” “MY BANK”) Okay. You’re open for a while?
R: Yeah. (“FOR A LITTLE WHILE”) For about half an hour.
Q: Okay. I’ll go right now.
R: Alright. What’s your name?
Q: Mark Russell Bell (“OKAY”) is my pseudonym. My real name is Mark G. Russell.
R: Okay. Mark Russell Bell. (“YEAH”)
Q: It’s got a nice ring to it.
A: Okay. Well, I hope you can come back soon. (“OKAY” “I WILL”)
Q: I will. I’m going to rush over to my bank.
A: Okay. (“AND GET”) You don’t want to just go across the street? ATM?
Q: I guess so. How much do they charge now for that?
A: I’ll pay for it. (“NO” “OKAY” “I”) I’ll give you ten bucks off.
Q: Okay, fine — (“OKAY” “I’LL” “[O]KAY YOU”) talked me into it.
( . . . )
Q: By the way, I was thinking Russell (“WAS”) is from the name Le Rozel so Rose — (“NO”) well, I wonder what her last name is.
A: Bauer. Like Bauerwear. (“HMM”)
Q: I wonder what meaning that has.
A: I don’t think she knows.
Q: I’ll take this.
A: So it comes to $10 off because you’re so spiritual. So that would be $115.
Q: And how much — is there tax on that?
A: Well — there is. Let me go write it out for you.
Q: Okay, fine.
( . . . )
Q: I’m so embarrassed. I almost changed my mind and bought some — what are they? (“HELP ME”)
Q: So I’m always doing this. (“I’M — P”) I’m going to stores and I can’t make up my mind so I always depend upon the sales clerk to help me. And you (“I HA[TE]”) helped me decide upon the table.
A: You’re not going to find the Moroccan table but you will find (duplicates of) these.
Q: What about in Morocco? Will I find a Moroccan table there?
A: If you go there. But you might not find that. You might make a trip for nothing.
Q: It might not be this old.
A: Right. It’ll be brand new. Okay, so we have $124.
( . . . )
Q: She’s going to give me $4 off because she doesn’t have change. Now I think that is a very nice lady.
A: Thank you, Russell. Would you fill out your name and address? We have special picture postcards that we take periodically and we’ll put one in your mailbox.
Q: Great. Well, I’m definitely not going to forget a name like The Rosetta Stone.
( . . . )
A: Rudy is my spiritual muse. My dog.
Q: Did he adopt you?
A: Yes he did because I find homes for dogs and he stayed. (“SO” “SEE”)
Q: How did I know that?
A: I don’t know. (“PSYCHIC”)
Q: I’m very psychic.
A: You are, aren’t you?
Q: Look how cute it is with a ball in its mouth. It is the sweetest little thing.
A: And he won’t give you the ball. (“WE HA[VE]”)
Q: He wants to play. (“YEAH”)
A: He loves to chase it but he doesn’t return it. (“ISN’T THAT CU[TE]”) He wants you to chase him. (“NO” “I’M”)
Q: I’m sorry. (“III”) Okay, well thank you. Nice meeting you.
A: Thank you, Russell. (“OKAY”)
( . . . )
Q: (speaking into tape recorder in car) So I just got my lunch. I’m having a late lunch. It’s 2:20. Something happened that just made my whole day. After buying the antique I was going by Subway Sandwich to get a tuna sandwich and there was a homeless man outside so I was able to give him $5 and I feel so good. I also gave him the 800 number for local human services. I mean (“IT”) it’s sad but I feel so good I was able to help him. I will be happy for the rest of the day.
( . . . )
Q: So here I am back in my condo. It’s 2:55. So I thought I’d talk a little bit about the lecture today even though I must say I’m getting very fatigued (“AN”) always taking notes during the lectures and thinking that it’s my job to capture a little bit of the themes. I put my new Moroccan table outside on my patio. I’ve always wanted to have something for my patio and I just love the camels and pyramids. It looks very old. I don’t know if it’s as valuable as some of my other antiques but it is a nice piece. I do feel it has a very spiritual quality about it even though I have no idea what it is or if it’s worth anything. I just get tired of — I almost seem like a hypocrite (“I MEAN”) buying antiques and then seeing homeless people. It’s just so discouraging. (“AND”) Plus the fact that no one seems to be interested in my book. No one wants to read it. No one can even imagine reading it. (“I”) No one’s asked to read it. No one’s interested in it. Not really. No one believes anything. Oh well. So it was funny — I enjoyed having Terrance with me during the lecture because it’s so hard to find people to go with me. Other than Marie, no one else has gone with me to any of them. Shirley J. Nicholson’s presentation was entitled “The Heart of The Secret Doctrine.” At her introduction there was a reference to the smile of the infinite, God’s smile or the smile of infinity — and I was telling Terrance, “‘Smile’ is putting it mildly. He’s like the biggest sicko with the most perverse sense of humor imaginable. So she spoke about Madame Blavatsky and Shirley has a new book out that takes ancient wisdom and puts it into a modern perspective. She and Obadiah joked about Manley Hall’s chair, which is on the dais. She talked about the movie “Mindwalk” and I remember I spoke to the director of that film because he was the production designer of the movie “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape.” And I encouraged him to contact Sherry Lansing about funding his new film. I don’t know if he ever did or not. He asked me if I knew her and I said — (“UM-HUH”) what do you think I said? Anyway, Shirley spoke a little bit about how we can’t fix anything piecemeal: health insurance, acid rain, the ozone hole, race relations, the homeless, the disenfranchised. A new vision is needed: “One in which everything is interconnected.” So that definitely was the exact theme of my book. (“SO”) She definitely felt that there was a new paradigm — a new holistic world view emerging where everything is seen as part of a Whole. She said this word holistic was ten or twelve years old but actually 120 years ago it was the theme of Blavatsky’s book, which in itself took from materials that were already centuries old about unity and Wholeism. In her day, these were radical thoughts. Her book The Secret Doctrine published in 1888 was a look at this ancient wisdom and perennial philosophy. She told a story about a woman who came in and said that she was the reincarnation of Blavatsky but she didn’t understand The Secret Doctrine so the sales clerk sold her an abridgment. I don’t know why they think this is so funny because this is what happens to each of us. We’re born without any memory of our previous lives and that’s one of the themes of my book. God finds a way of letting us know who we were. (“LIKE”) He let me know I’m Bel-Marduk and maybe Catherine Cadiere and maybe Julia Pastrana — just like He let other people know who they are through going to psychics and what-have-you. Of course, they really don’t take it that seriously—maybe they should—until they see a painting of themselves or a medallion of themselves. Blavatsky’s book was different from the straightforward, logical books which are equated with the masculine style. Her work was described as being in the feminine style, made to “tickle your intuition and inner sensibility” without spelling things out clearly and straightforwardly, which is definitely the style of my own Testament. She talked about oneness, wholeness and the transcendental state. My book, like Blavatsky’s book, is trying to give a broad overview into science, religion, philosophy and form a synthesis. The motto she was talking about is: “No religion is higher than truth.” No dharma, doctrine or law — no teaching is higher than truth. The most important secret, perhaps, is the Unity/Oneness/ Wholeness of life (“THAT WE’RE”) that we each are a part of. (“YOU”) You can get her lecture from the Philosophical Research Society if you would like to hear this in its entirety. Shirley talked about things like absolute reality — absolute reality “transcends the power of human conception” whether it be called Brahman, God or Self-Existent: “It can only be dwarfed by human expression.” She said words like omnipotent, immutable, boundless are words that we can meditate on but are beyond complete understanding. Everything reflects this transcendent unity in the world around it. She talked about the people of Lapland and how they hunt reindeer by seeing the aurora borealis and the magnetic phenomena reflected from the reindeer’s hooves uncovering their food beneath the snow and creating a ripple effect. She talked about the Perfect Being, God, and one of the words she used was Tao (pronounced Dow)—I don’t know if that’s the same as in Dow Jones or not—and (“STH”) maya, the illusion (“ABOUT”) things not as they seem. She talked about Zeus and the goddess Chth. (“UM”) “The essence of everything is sacred.” She quoted Emerson: (“THAT”) “Everything is made of one hidden stuff.” She said also (“THAT”) transcendent unity is reflected all around us, not only by nature but by everything around us all the time. We are part of one life, a deeper reality beyond our views and preconceptions. She talked about monotheism and apollotheism in various mythologies throughout the world; that, of course, there’s the first God, the Creator, and then His creation of all the other gods, other ‘helpers’ whether they be called angels or gods, depending on what culture you study and relate to. She discussed the Great Spirit and other divine beings, pointing out that (“IT”) for the Hindus there is Brahman and then the pantheon of other gods; spiritual intelligences behind the cosmos, angels or archangels — a collective host of beings. That’s when I turned to Terrance and said, “Just like in the movie ’12 Monkeys.'” Anyway, there is this hierarchy of unseen intelligence and who knows where each of us falls into it. In her new book, she’s trying to put Blavatsky’s book into modern language. (“SO”) That’s a good idea and most books, I find, are updated like that through people’s efforts and (“IT’S”) they’re all part — we each have a mission in life that we fulfill and so this is her intended mission. She discussed ‘graded intelligences’ working behind the scenes of nature and human life to embody and enact the Divine Mind and Universal Intelligence. Through them the Universal Mind comes into action — these are those who guide the universe behind the scenes and Mighael, of course, is (“ONE”) another word for this amassing of souls — one body working together to enact the divine plan. The cosmos is pervaded by unseen intelligences. We’re all part of this vast intelligent scheme and it’s all part of the essence at the heart of the universe. So that’s my conviction and my prayer and my hope — that a beloved, beautiful God, Who is so giving and loving, has a wonderful, perfect plan and isn’t going to fall from grace or lose sight of His perfect plan and see it all the way through to the end. (“IT’S — [A]GAIN”) It’s like, again, we have to motivate Him toward love instead of the other emotions because we’re all vulnerable to dark emotions as well as light emotions. I’ve experienced them all, let me tell you. And I do think that He’s undecided. My struggles with our book are evidence of that. We’re tested every moment of the day and there are times that I have avoided homeless people but let’s face it — I mean how can I — if I were just to give money to homeless people all day I wouldn’t have time to do anything else. (“MAYBE” “BUT”) So it’s like every moment with everything we do we’re being judged. Oh God — (“AND THEN YOU”) then you think of things like Mark Twain’s work, (“KK”) where it says God despises homeless people. (“SO”) It’s very confusing and very complex. And what I’m trying to articulate are the very many, different aspects of this ambivalent God that both loves us and hates us for making His path so complex and difficult. One of the things (“MIN”) had the most meaning for me today was when Shirley talked about the fact that today movies were really the main — (“TODAY”) I can’t really read my notes about this. She did talk about movies and the “changing shadows.” I don’t know. I guess what (“I’M”) my book is trying to do is try to make sense of that which cannot be comprehended and so I really appreciate the poem that she shared. It may seem very simple but, if you really consider what is says, it’s a wonderful explanation of God. I wonder if Shirley’s any relation to Jack? So I did buy the sale edition of H. P. Blavatsky Collected Writings Volume Five 1883, the first edition. I just couldn’t resist it. It was, like, $10. So I don’t know when I’ll have time to read all these books. Actually, the book I’m enjoying most is Mamie Van Doren’s book because it’s such an honest description of her life. I mean I’ve read some biographies, like Ann-Margret’s biography, and I just felt totally mystified — like this woman doesn’t want to share anything about herself. Or maybe this really is her personality — she’s so shell-shocked by life and so numb by her experience that she really has nothing to say. She’s a brilliant actress but she’s so afraid to articulate her emotions. I guess there are a lot of stars like that. So my book is definitely a tell-all book about Hollywood because — it’s like what Diana Widom said in her interview about how these people, perhaps, are being tested through their success to see how they handle the human values which are the most important intrinsic ones that we each must deal with. The song on the radio right now is saying, “Run run run . . .” It doesn’t mean anything. I just thought I’d mention it. We all would like to run but there’s no place to run to — as in the movie “Martha.” I remember transcribing one of my tapes one day and hearing, “BE MARTHA.” But what does that mean? What does it all mean? I guess I’m still — even though I know that God is love and God is more than love, I still don’t know anything. I just believe some of the things I’ve read. (“I COULDN’T EVEN”) Right now, I can’t even tell you where any of the things I’ve read come from because I’ve just read so much recently. (“BUT I JUST”) I do believe that everything that is not love is fear. And it’s always a struggle against love and fear. The fact that Mighael only talks to me on the tapes, using his different — there are some voices that I hear more than others. (“IT’S JUST”) It’s such a strange relationship. It was very encouraging (“TO”) to look at this Walk Easy newsletter published by The James Kavanaugh Institute because there was a new poem that said something very important to me. (“YEAH”) It said: Excerpt from “Chiseled From Rocks”:
The Theosophical Society, while reserving for each member full freedom to interpret those teachings known as theosophy, is dedicated to preserving and realizing the ageless wisdom, which embodies both a world view and a vision of human self-transformation.
This tradition is founded upon certain fundamental propositions:
The universe and all that exists within it are one interrelated and interdependent whole.
Every existing being—from atom to galaxy—is rooted in the same universal, life-creating Reality. This Reality is all-pervasive, but it can never be summed up in its parts, since it transcends all its expressions. It reveals itself in the purposeful, ordered, and meaningful processes of nature as well as in the deepest recesses of the mind and spirit.
Recognition of the unique value of every living being expresses itself in reverence for life, compassion for all, sympathy with the need of all individuals to find truth for themselves, and respect for all religious traditions. The ways in which these ideals become realities in individual life are both the privileged choice and the responsible act of every human being.
Central to the concerns of theosophy is the desire to promote understanding and brotherhood among people of all races, nationalities, philosophies, and religions. Therefore, all people, whatever their race, creed, sex, caste, or color, are invited to participate equally in the life and work of the Society. The Theosophical Society imposes no dogmas, but points toward the source of unity beyond all differences. Devotion to truth, love for all living beings, and commitment to a life of active altruism are the marks of the true theosophist.
Q: By the way, I was reading about the Krotona School and it’s funny that Shirley Nicholson should choose Pythagoras because:
The name Krotona, taken from the ancient mystery school of Pythagoras at Crotona, Italy, refers to a theosophical center first established in Hollywood, now in Ojai, California.
Q: So she might have thought she was joking but she’s very close to the energy of Pythagoras and she may well, in fact, be the reincarnation. Only God knows, as Prince would say. So I’m looking at a pamphlet entitled H. P. Blavatsky and Her Writings. What an enigmatic woman — who looks like someone’s grandmother or a gypsy fortune-teller or my friend Fiona twenty years from now on a bad day. The Secret Doctrine expresses some very beautiful thoughts so this woman had a very beautiful soul, regardless of her photographs.
(a) An Omnipresent, Eternal, Boundless, and Immutable Principle on which all speculation is impossible, since it transcends the power of human conception and could only be dwarfed by any human expression or similitude. It is beyond the range and reach of thought.
(b) The Eternity of the Universe in toto as a boundless plane; periodically “the playground of numberless Universes incessantly manifesting and disappearing.”
(c) The fundamental identity of all Souls with the Universal Over-Soul, the latter being itself an aspect of the Unknown Root; and the obligatory pilgrimage for every Soul—a spark of the former—through the Cycle and Karmic law.
Let thy soul lend its ear to every cry of pain like as the lotus bears its heart to drink the morning sun.
Let not the fierce Sun dry one tear of pain before thyself has wiped it from the sufferer’s eye.
But let each burning human tear drop on thy heart and there remain, nor ever brush it off, until the pain that caused it is removed.
Help Nature and work on with her, and Nature will regard thee as one of her creators and make obeisance.
Mind is like a mirror; it gathers dust while it reflects. It needs the gentle breezes of Soul-Wisdom to brush away the dust of our illusions.
The wheel of the good Law moves swiftly on. It grinds by night and day. The worthless husks it drives from out the golden grain, the refuse from the flour. The hand of Karma guides the wheel; the revolutions mark the beating of the Karmic heart.
Sow kindly acts and thou shalt reap their fruition. Inaction in a deed of mercy becomes an action in a deadly sin.
Step out from sunlight into shade, to make more room for others.
To live to benefit mankind is the first step. To practice the six glorious virtues is the second.
Behold, the mellow light that floods the Eastern sky. In signs of praise both heaven and earth unite. And from the four-fold manifested Powers a chant of love ariseth, both from the flaming Fire and flowing Water, and from sweet-smelling Earth and rushing Wind. . . . All Nature’s wordless voice in thousand tones ariseth to proclaim: . . . A Pilgrim hath returned back from the other shore. . . . Peace to all beings.