Florinda Donner-Grau Chronology Part VII [Jan.- May 1995]
March 24-26, 1995 - Workshop in Maui with Florinda, Taisha and the Chacmools at the Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua. (The following summary of Florinda¡¯s lecture is an amalgam taken primarily from excellent notes by Sandy McIntosh and Van.)
Florinda claimed that one night, when she was a student in Los Angeles, she was driving Castaneda¡¯s VW Microbus [note: this must have been before she was barred by Old Florinda from driving], waiting for a light to change on a dark street. Suddenly, out of the corner of her eye she saw a woman dressed in black grab her driver's side door handle. The woman's eyes were wild. She grinned dementedly at Florinda, her expression distorted by enormous protruding teeth. The strange woman's hair was black, and Florinda had the idea, or "knew," that it was dyed (which she attributed to "our insistence and tendency, even in the face of the unknown, to judge and explain everything"). Frightened, Florinda screamed and jammed her foot on the gas pedal. She took off down the road, but the woman ran alongside, keeping up with her. Now terrified, Florinda sped up, accelerating to 80 miles per hour. The woman kept pace, running and holding onto the door handle for a long time, until Florinda finally looked again, and she was gone.
Florinda immediately went to see don Juan [an episode not mentioned in Being-in-Dreaming]. She told him about the woman and what had happened. Don Juan seemed concerned. He thought for awhile, and then, in a serious voice asked, "Was the woman farting?" Florinda was stunned. She made don Juan repeat his question. He asked again if the woman had been farting. Florinda claimed she was not only unhinged by the question, she was greatly annoyed with don Juan for not taking her very serious situation seriously. "No, no," don Juan insisted with a straight face, "A woman running that fast must have been farting." No matter how annoyed Florinda became with him, even shouting that he was a senile old man, don Juan persisted in questioning whether the woman had been farting. Eventually, Florinda gave up and told don Juan that if he wasn't going to take her situation seriously then neither was she. "Good," said don Juan. "When confronted by the unfathomable, a warrior either makes a joke about it or he takes it seriously, and it destroys him."
Florinda related other manifestations, instances of perceiving awarenesses "that crossed somehow into this realm." One was that of a creature that looked like a cat but had a rabbit¡¯s back end and big teeth. She joked about her tendency to see things with big teeth.
Florinda described the motivating force behind the behavior of people in don Juan's group, and now in Carlos's. She called it a "blank check of sheer affection" that they had given to each other. She recalled Carlos describing don Juan as "always giving 100% of his attention to anyone who talked with him--more, Carlos pointed out, than anyone in the social world ever gives to anyone else." The reason that sorcerers can give this intensity is because they have retained a greater amount of abstract awareness than ordinary people, who usually are preoccupied only with themselves. Issuing such a check is also "a tremendous warrior's challenge." Florinda declared that she had given Taisha her check of sheer affection but, "although Taisha was beautiful and brilliant, she had a horrendous side to her personality and was not the easiest person to get along with." She mentioned that don Juan and Genaro were so focused that when one was not there, they didn't know you existed, which used to make her mad before she knew that don Juan was "energetically so hard." She realized that to trust the Nagual meant "to trust him with one's life totally." Given the chance to do it again, she said that, certainly, she would do it again, only "with more discipline."
Florinda talked about Old Florinda. She would wear "a robe of energy." Florinda would always see it as something like a bathrobe that Old Florinda would wear with one of her breasts hanging out. Don Juan and Old Florinda would jokingly ask Florinda how she liked Old Florinda's robe. The old nagual would ask old Florinda to take off her robe in front of Florinda. Then one day, she saw that Old Florinda had never had a real robe on at all. It was her interpretation system that influenced or distorted her seeing the sheer energy robe of Old Florinda.
Florinda claimed that don Juan Matus was not of this world but could operate within it. He was a businessman and dealt with lawyers. She said that she went out socially with him. [Such outings, which one would think would be events worthy of mention in her book, which otherwise seems to detail every time she sees don Juan, are never mentioned in Being-in-Dreaming.] She never met the nagual Julian but heard lecherous tales about him. She claimed that Old Florinda was very wealthy. Don Juan too, had money but she didn't know what name he had it under.
Florinda claimed that Old Florinda took her to a house with gold bricks in the floor. Old Florinda told Florinda that the house was hers if she could find it again. [Another episode omitted from Being-in-Dreaming.] Florinda said that don Juan gave them all nicknames and hers was "Greed." She claimed that Old Florinda left her a cache of jewelry in dreaming. She claimed that Carlos Castaneda was not very well off at all. [With only an estimated $10-20 million in book royalties.] She claimed that some Italian writer who could not get an interview with Carlos just made up his article, including "scandalous deeds" such as "Carlos Castaneda, the California guru, living with women 'servants.¡¯" In reality, Florinda said, Castaneda gives away his wealth, supporting people in Mexico as well as the rest of them. She claimed that "sorcery provides," but one must, in turn, give it away to get it once again. One must not be attached.
Florinda related how the women of don Juan's party doted on don Juan. She joked that he "couldn't even go to the bathroom without them." They adored him, though, as "the nagual, the one which brings freedom, abstract and total freedom." They "were, of course, free from the mundane assertions such behavior would normally conjure in the day to day world." This led Florinda to discuss how men are more fragile than women. "They are energetically," but society also "sets it up for them to be pampered needlessly." Florinda talked about how women are ingrained with the need to help "the poor baby men." At the airport they had seen men in suits, business types, trying to get coffee for themselves. They were there without their wives to get their coffee for them, "poor babies," and Florinda described how they had felt that impulse to go over and help them! She also mentioned how, on the plane, she was cramped and had a stiff neck. She spent the time planning her speech while "an ally rubbed my neck."
Florinda also described "ushers," those allies (or anything else, i.e., omen/spirit) that usher us into any unknown or new thing. She described one of her ushers, explaining that one day she was ironing, "naked as is my usual custom," when she felt what she perceived as a furry dog rubbing between her legs. She claimed it was an ally rubbing up against her, "an inorganic being."
Florinda went on to say, probably in response to a question, that allies were not bad or good, that there really is no good or evil. "We are navigators of infinity, navigators of perception." She claimed that Castaneda was "really out there" and that they, the women disciples, were "doing everything we can to keep up." Florinda claimed that it would be "very easy" for them "to fly off into the unknown. The whole affair is so easy and that is why it is so hard to accomplish." Florinda emphatically stated that she and her group were totally and completely given to the sorcerer¡¯s way of life. She said that the reason that those in the audience were there was "because you¡¯re not happy" or " you¡¯re missing something in your lives." She claimed she would be "a fat wife or something horrible like that, hating my husband and my kids," if it were not for this path.
Florinda added that Carlos has been "pretending to be retarded for the past three years and that, because of this, he would never really be retarded." In regards to Tensegrity, Florinda mentioned that "Carlos taught it when he was around." She also emphasized, as the Chacmools would later in the seminar, that Tensegrity was not a fixed thing. The movements were always changing. "Tensegrity is always changing," Florinda said, "because Carlos is always dreaming."
However, at other times the Chacmools as well as Taisha would say that Tensegrity "came from four strands of magical passes each given individually to the four disciples of the old Nagual." These passes, they indicated, were combined into the Tensegrity.
Florinda claimed we were all petty tyrants and that mothers are "the biggest petty tyrants." When asked about losing one's edge she said that women lose more in having children than men do, but men do lose some too. She said we can reclaim our lost energy by cutting the connection to children. "Besides," she claimed, "we don't love our children anyway."
Someone asked about La Gorda's eye (as described in the Second Ring of Power). Florinda said she didn't know anything about this. There were a few questions along these lines that Florinda reportedly got a bit flustered over. She did again claim that La Gorda had died in her arms.
She reported that a "well off, sick, crazy young friend of ours" was always insulted by Castaneda "because he always opened himself up like a balloon to be popped." This guy [Tony Karam], however, took a picture of a flyer.
Florinda said, possibly in response to a question, that there were "inorganic awarenesses present in the hall" they were in. Some, she said, appeared brownish or grayish, likes puffs or spirals. She claimed she could see them but we could not because 90 percent of our energy went into holding up our self-reflection and self-importance ("don Juan used 98%," she claimed).
Florinda said that she had seen just about every movie there was. She loved movies so much that the other sorcerers had a nickname for her--"the movie whore." Florinda claimed sorcery changes and heightens one's awareness "in weird ways," like the senses. She claimed Castaneda could "find chocolate anywhere." She also said she loved to read as well as watch movies. She claimed that "Carlos doesn¡¯t read anything but the Enquirer." She also mentioned she used to practice Shotokan karate at college.
The notes also seemingly mention Cecilia Evans¡ªi.e., "a woman associated with us who started hearing voices and couldn¡¯t ¡®snap out of it¡¯ as a stalker would."
April 20, 1995 - A fictitious business name statement is recorded for the Chacmool Center for Enhanced Perception, listing 12 names, including Florinda Donner-Grau, Nuri Alexander, Kylie Lundahl, Julius Renard, and Tycho Thal. [95-0654347].
May 19-21, 1995 - Mexico City Workshop at Sheraton Maria Isabel Hotel with Carol, Florinda, Taisha and the three Chacmools. Florinda closed on Sunday. [The 1,000 attendees were broken into two groups to learn Tensegrity--500 on Saturday, and the other 500 on Sunday.]
May 26-29, 1995 - Omega Institute workshop in Rhinebeck, New York. The following excerpts are taken from my nearly verbatim notes, taken in shorthand while they were speaking (a practice they barred beginning with the August 1995 workshop). [For a complete account of this workshop click here.]
Replica Watches Replica Watches
Florinda spoke the first night, Taisha the second, and the Chacmools the third, with the Chacmools, Florinda and Taisha fielding questions (in lieu of Carol¡¯s speech, since Carol had supposedly "crashed" after the workshop in Mexico).
Florinda explained that they were "the original disciples of don Juan." They had all allegedly been drafted into the sorcerers' world more than 25 years ago. "We had a long period of incubation, including 10 years with don Juan [actually, in Florinda's case, if one believes her own chronology, barely 3] and 10 more under Old Florinda."
Florinda: "Energy opened up for Castaneda when he jumped into the abyss. We don't understand what happened ourselves: we saw him jump [strange, then, that in Being-in-Dreaming Florinda claims to have been in Mexico when donJuan's party left, but relates there that she neither saw them leave nor Castaneda jump], and Castaneda resurfaced ten hours later in Westwood, in his apartment at the intersection of Westwood Blvd. and Wilshire Blvd."
"Carol Tiggs disappeared for 10 years, reappearing at the Phoenix Bookstore after trying to find the clan for months."
Florinda digressed, claiming "Carlos doesn't read anymore like an ordinary person--he sleeps on top of books all day, because his liver and spleen were taught to absorb heavy, philosophical type tomes. His legs down to his ankles read thrillers. Unfortunately, he has no spot on his body for reading letters. His penis doesn't read at all; he can't even read Playboy with it." She said that she and Carol Tiggs "placed a batch of letters on his buttocks one day while he was sleeping, and when he woke he said he'd had the best sleep ever, but had felt alligators, snakes and barracudas biting into his back. His head is only good for reading magazines--Time, Der Speigel and Hola." So Florinda read his letters to him.
Florinda claimed they all have to obey Kylie. "Kylie won't let Taisha tell her stories, because they make everyone cry. She won't let Castaneda watch TV or drink coffee, and doesn't let Carol Tiggs eat because she gets too fat. But she lets me do anything. That's because we're both 'Baltic'--from the same planet."
Women, Florinda claimed, because of their wombs, have an even greater capacity to read than men, but can only do so for a few pages at a time. "Unfortunately, we destroyed so many books this way [i.e., reading with their vaginas], that now we read like anyone else."
"The Old Nagual was extremely pragmatic and was different with each one of us in technique and mood. With me he was concrete and lewd." Florinda claimed that he told her that every time she saw Old Florinda, Old Florinda was naked. Playing on how we perceive in everyday world everyone as being clothed, Florinda claimed that sorcerers can appear fully clothed even when they are really naked. They "wear a coat of sheer energy." Old Florinda used to walk around in what appeared to be a silk robe, which in itself scandalized Florinda, and don Juan walked in on them once and told Old Florinda to take off her clothes. Old Florinda responded "Whatever you want," and she appeared "naked and gorgeous." Don Juan told Florinda, "Blondie, feast your eyes." Then he asked her where was the robe, and there was none. Old Florinda was just naked. Don Juan did the same with Castaneda, but Castaneda always thought it really was a physical robe, and that "because he was so busy hiding his erections, it gave them enough time to hide the robe from him." Florinda claimed she does the same to the Chacmools now. Renata Murez came to her room at 6 PM that night, very nervous. Florinda didn't have anything on, but Reni supposedly saw her as fully clothed. We don't see either that among us are bell-shaped, and also candle-like undulating, dark chocolate shapes -- the Inorganic Beings we coexist with, that move energetically at a much lower speed than we do. Only through dreaming can we balance our energy sufficiently to see them. One day in Los Angeles Florinda was ironing naked, practicing the robe of energy, when she felt a furry thing sliding between her legs. She thought she had left the door open and that a stray dog had come in, but, of course, it was an inorganic being.
One day when Florinda was driving with Taisha to class in their VW van in Los Angeles, an old woman grabbed onto the door. They sped up to lose her, but only lost her when they finally turned from Olympic onto Wilshire, where there were more lights. Don Juan laughed when Florinda described the woman as very old, with crooked teeth and horrible breath. He said, "I think you smelled her farts," commenting dryly to the others in the room that anyone who runs at that speed would, of necessity, have to fart. He even asked those assembled, "Wouldn't she need to fart a great deal?" and they all solemnly agreed. Later an "inorganic friend" showed up that was a mixture between a cat and a rabbit, "with the most horrible teeth." Don Juan allegedly told Florinda to quit anthropomorphizing the inorganics, because her "fixation on teeth" was unhealthy.
Florinda claimed that don Juan took Taisha and Florinda into the hills [interesting, because Florinda complains in Being-in-Dreaming of never having met any of Castaneda's other women associates, even as late as don Juan's departure in '73], and said they would have to take off their clothes and lean by a rock. Once the "wind" came they were to join Old Florinda down the hill. Florinda waited, but of course there was no wind. She had given up and was going to leave when she felt a tremendous force of energy enter "the hole between my legs," causing her to run down the hill "in the air" screaming. Don Juan was waiting at the bottom with Old Florinda, and they "stopped the wind." They howled with laughter at her. She told them she had been "raped" by the wind, and beat on them. Don Juan told her if she had only done it properly she would have learned something.
A man asked a long question about whether what has happened to Castaneda and Carol Tiggs has changed the group's path. Florinda responded that the question they are dealing with now is "Are we condemned to interpret forever? Is that what we're stuck with? Our hope is the two scouts, blue and orange, who have a different kind of energy, acting as our energetic guides, indicates that there is a way to bridge that interpretation limitation."
A woman asked, "Why the short hair?" Florinda explained that she had been shaved bald after "living with the lamas" in the seventies and getting a bad case of lice. When it grew out it was "like this." Also, hair is basically dead. "It is practical and propitious to have short hair."
A man asked about don Juan's current situation. Florinda said, "We don't really know. We believe he is in another layer of the onion, another world, but we don't really know."
A man asked, "Can you talk about sexual activity?" Florinda complained jokingly, "I always get this question; it always comes to me." Then she said, "Castaneda is supposed to be celibate. I hope he is." (Florinda then took off her glasses, joking "I'd rather not see your faces when I talk about this.") "The old Nagual said all of us are 'bored fucks,' in the sense that we were conceived in total or semi-boredom. So our energy is at a mediocre level. Therefore it is better that we not spend it wastefully.
A man asked a question about formlessness. Florinda claimed that the most formless in their group were Castaneda and Carol Tiggs. "If nothing was pulling them to stay here, they would hardly remain. I always remind Castaneda that he owes me to take me with him, because he kept me from departing with Old Florinda."
A man asked whether we should form groups. Florinda said no, that even their group is really very solitary. "Something energetically connects us. It is not because we eat or live together. (We might go to movies together.)" There is no guarantee even that they will all leap together.
I asked a question about where gays and lesbians fit into the sorcerers' view of the world, given that the books are pretty "heterocentric." Florinda responded that the books reflect the tradition of "a bunch of old Mexicans," who were very "uptight about sexuality," and that's why the books leave it out. "Lesbians were not real for them. The only thing don Juan commented when the subject of homosexuality came up was that he didn't understand why some gays and lesbians live in couples just like heterosexuals"; he seemed to wonder why they don't take advantage of being outside the norm. "Moralistically, it didn't matter to him." In her view, males get along better with each other anyway. "Males don't like females. Yes, we're good sexual partners and mothers, but ultimately, energetically, you prefer your own kind. And women do too." As a society, we haven't much explored if women can love each other, beyond just when they are both miserable.
A man asked about the impact of children on our luminous eggs. Florinda claimed that both she and Carol Tiggs had each given birth to a scout. Florinda had the orange one. "It doesn't have that much impact, except one just has to work harder or run faster. We may have holes, but it pushes us to work harder."
A man asked about the death of la Gorda. Florinda said, "She died 10 years ago in a burst of ego. She thought she was the Nagual, because don Juan had said she was a 'peerless dreamer.' She was impatient with Carlos taking too long and Carol Tiggs not being around. She combusted--she almost leapt, but she couldn't hold it, because her drive was sheer egomania. So she died in our arms."
Someone asked a question about the abyss [that Castaneda supposedly jumped into around the time of don Juan¡¯s departure]. Florinda explained that when Castaneda jumped, he "changed energetically." She also claimed that "Nestor, Pablito and the Little Sisters joined don Juan not long ago." [Indeed, this departure would have to have been in the first few months of 1995, because in Castaneda's December 1994 lecture he was still saying that the Genaros and Little Sisters were "all doing find, living good lives." Maybe Castaneda and company finally decided to "off" this fictional gang following Merilyn Tunneshende's claim that to be involved with the Little Sisters.]
A woman asked how the Chacmools were "chosen." Florinda explained she had met Kylie "10 or 15 years ago, at an art gallery in Oslo." (In an aside, Florinda claimed, "Kylie's a great artist.") Florinda had gotten sick there "from having eaten too many French chocolates on the plane. I vomited and Kylie nursed me." Kylie knew about Castaneda. Florinda told her to "come visit," without really meaning it, and "Kylie showed up at our agent's a year later." Florinda "told her to go away, but she continued on her own until something in her changed and there was no way to refuse her. Energetically they became Chacmools, because of what they did. So many have tried to be with us, and they either go mad or don't like it because our life is too harsh."
A man observed that "the rule"[as described in Castaneda's early books] seems to have changed, and asked whether that means that what had been written is no longer pertinent. Florinda said "No, that's not true. What's been written is a bona fide account of a process and practices. Taisha's metaphor is of water going over pebbles in a river. The pebbles are still there, there's just new water running over them." Florinda said she used to ask don Juan for the rules, what to do. "I used to fight him, telling him I was German, and that if he'd just tell me what to do, I'd do it. When I was planning to do anthropology research in the Amazon, he just told me not to use other people, including my parents, for connections and help, which was my usual way. He told me to do it on my own." [According to her books, however, it was Old Florinda who gave Florinda these instructions. It is also interesting that don Juan, who is supposed to have left in 1973, is supposedly giving Florinda instructions for her alleged Amazon field research that she does not claim to have done until 1975 or 1976.] She claimed she almost killed him when he told her, "All you have is that you're blond and blue eyed in a country where that matters." But it changed her.
A man asked about the story about the dog in The Witch's Dream. Florinda avoided responding, saying, "That was so long ago." She explained that she was told she had to do her thesis work outside of Mexico, that otherwise it would be too easy. "I found a healer. The first version of the thesis hadn't been accepted; it wasn't scientific enough for UCLA." This healer believed that energetically we are related to those connected with us--our parents, etc.
A man asked, "Isn't the ultimate quest total freedom?" Florinda said, "That's just an idealization unless we raise our awareness. Otherwise it's mental masturbation. Don Juan's party burned from within, making the plumed serpent configuration, with one last round for our eyes. [Hmm, even in Being-in-Dreaming Florinda does not claim to have seen this.] Sixteen people disappeared. Old Florinda disappeared after la Gorda died, because we were all responsible and Old Florinda cussed us out. For us to let that happen," Old Florinda called them incompetents, etc. So Old Florinda determined to make the leap alone. "There's an orange tree in front of my window, and Old Florinda had on a white dress and sunbonnet. I saw briefly a light, but thought Old Florinda was just hiding when she vanished. But no, she was just suddenly gone, with only a strange vibration behind her that went through the trees and left the orange blossoms shaking. Old Florinda wanted to take me, but Castaneda didn't want me to go so he pushed me out of the way."
Florinda also commented at some point about Castaneda's clan all being "connected by having been at the Anthropological Institute at UCLA at some time."
During an extended question and answer period on Sunday night that took the place of Carol¡¯s scheduled lecture, Florinda said that Carol Tiggs "seems to be our energy source," and claimed that she, Carol Tiggs and Taisha had taken the shape of a "tube," and were "tubing their energy to the Chacmools."
Nyei: "The Blue Scout was also gone for about 10 years, from the chronological ages of seven to 17, returning about a year before Carol Tiggs did. During this time, Florinda and Castaneda took care of her."
Renata: "What Castaneda didn't know at the time [that he freed the Blue Scout from the Inorganic Beings¡¯ world] was that there was another unit of energy behind the Blue Scout--the Orange Scout--that was also trapped. Castaneda's effort freed her as well. Don Juan was very concerned, knowing that Carol Tiggs would have to give birth to free the Blue Scout. The matter of the Orange Scout was even more difficult, however, because no one wanted to help. Finally, Florinda said, 'Fuck it! I'll do it.'"
A man asked whether the Chacmools knew where the scouts came from. That question seemed to stump the Chacmools, so Florinda came up to answer, followed by Taisha. Florinda said that the scouts are both, in a weird way, "our beacon." She claimed, "they act from total egolessness; even their appearing to fight with each other is a great delight to us, since the scouts know they can't live without each other." [Note: Apparently they found a way by '97, when the "Orange Scout" was sent away.] The group believes they have some energy from "way beyond." She claimed, "We don't know who the scouts' fathers are." (In Mexico City, Florinda had joked that in the case of her child, the father was "a huge, fat Indian from Oaxaca.")
A woman asked a question about the Death Defier and Carol Tiggs. Florinda responded that the Death Defier, "is riding Carol Tiggs. On one level, she is Carol Tiggs." In fact, after the Mexico City experience, "we don't know at the moment whether she is the Carol Tiggs we have always known. We're trying to bring her back in dreaming, which is very hard when we have to be so much in the world, delivering a workshop for four days." Florinda then mentioned that the Orange Scout had called her that morning. She commented, "It is a big mistake to call me before noon," and yet Florinda's door was being knocked on that morning at 8:00 AM. The Orange Scout just, "wanted to talk to Mommy." But Florinda was, at first, enraged. In Florinda's words, "Nothing is colder than a witch's tit." She concluded, "The only way we can reach Castaneda or Carol Tiggs now is through dreaming."
A man asked how long it took them to recall their Second Attention experiences. Florinda quipped, "Not as long as Carlos." As a German, she's "very focused on time." When Fabrizio drove them to an antique store in town that day, she insisted that they be back by three, knowing that if she didn't they would still be there. When they got back to the car, she claimed, it was one minute to three.
Florinda claimed that her first recapitulation helped her to understand Heidegger, and even to read him in German somehow, "although my reading ability in German is normally pretty low. The recapitulation opened up synapses that expanded my mental abilities."
Florinda claimed that, "Don Juan, being from Yuma, Arizona, spoke English very well and used to use the horrible term ¡®cracked cunts¡¯ in referring to the women." She also claimed, "Carol Tiggs's intent was to return, and that intent had to have existed for a long time. Don Juan knew we would find themselves in our current circumstances, and his intense training of us in a variety of techniques was because he knew we would be needing it."
A man asked Florinda how she manipulated her energy to have the Orange Scout born through her. Florinda responded, "The way we do it in the world." The Orange Scout was "in me energetically. The process was very much directed by the Old Nagual, not that he was there at the time."
In response to a question about Castaneda having a son, and the impact of children on one's edge, or having children causing a hole in one's luminous egg, Florinda claimed that a child, especially the first born, "does take the edge. This does make it harder [to pursue the sorcerer's path], but not impossible. Castaneda never had a son. He was given a boy to raise, but that child was taken away from him when the child was six-years-old. [This is obviously a reference to C.J. Castaneda, Margaret Runyan Castaneda¡¯s son who now goes by the name "Adrian Vashon," and who unsuccessfully challenged the probate of Castaneda¡¯s 1998 will. For more about C.J.¡¯s relationship to Castaneda click here.] And Castaneda contributed a great deal of energy to the birth of the Blue Scout."
Florinda claimed that Florinda Grau used to tell her, "If you beat me, it's a matter of ego. If I beat you, it's controlled folly, because to me, it doesn't matter."
A woman asked how the Chacmools came into the sorcerers' world. Kylie responded that Florinda got sick on chocolates in Norway, and "I was completely taken with her. To me, Florinda was like some sprite from a German forest. As I listened to Florinda, I recognized something I always hoped was true," i.e., that there was "a being that wasn't duplicitous. It pulled me. Florinda passed out in my arms, and Castaneda says that's the moment when I began to guard her. Florinda left, but I followed her to L.A., not even bothering to pack."
Nyei claimed her introduction to the group was "a three-fold story: I was introduced to them twice. I went to a lecture by Florinda, but I was late, and was told by others there that I had nearly missed her." Nyei then realized she'd have been there much earlier [meaning she had had a prior opportunity to be introduced to them], but was "lost in trying to become a genius poet, and had to get burned out on that first. By some great luck I found Florinda. Then Taisha and Kylie came and stole me from my parents' house. Florinda had invited me to a Tensegrity class. I felt an energetic change on one level immediately. Taisha and Kylie came to help me 'move some things,' and before I knew it I was out of my parents' house and going with them--they weren't just moving furniture, they were taking me too. Once I arrived with them, they ignored me completely and told me to recapitulate."
A man asked, "What's the rule of the three-pronged nagual?" Florinda responded dramatically, but somewhat jokingly, "There are no rules!"
In response to a question about the jobs they work at, Florinda claimed her current job was as a translator, and that "I write about sorcery, feminism and phenomenology, and take care of the Chacmools and the Orange Scout. The Chacmools work at Toltec Artists." Taisha said she has another persona who is a professional "who does accounting and bill paying and investments. It took me years to train for this. When I get back to Los Angeles, this person has to kick in to deal with a lot of work. I also cook and clean." Florinda jumped in to say that Taisha, "doesn't clean." Taisha continued, claiming "All of us do mundane things, but they are transformed, becoming true pleasure."
A woman asked whether any of them were in relationships when they came into the sorcerers' world and, if so, whether the relationship survived. [Laughter] Florinda responded, "How could it? We are truly solitary beings. And no, we don't have a relationship with Carlos." She said they all go to the movies together, and that their interactions with each other are pretty mundane. "We don't sit around asking each other what process we experienced."
A man asked about the role of academia in their world. Florinda responded that Castaneda thinks that "only by training the mind to its limits can we make sense of the world out there. Academia played an important role for us too simply because it's Castaneda's 'mood.'" Taisha and Florinda claimed to be very interested in phenomenology. Only Florinda was interested in feminism. "To truly be in the world, one can use professors as petty tyrants," Florinda suggested. Florinda claimed that she and Taisha usually wrote each paper twice: "once for ourselves and once for the professor."
Someone asked Florinda whether she was really wearing clothes or not. She said she had "thought about practicing the sheer robe of energy on you, but one needs sandals for that, and I didn't bring any. You can't do it wearing socks." Florinda also said at some point that she and Taisha had adjoining apartments.
Go to Florinda Donner-Grau Chronology part VIII