PSYCHEDELICS OR NOT?
A reader speaks out.
As a student of Carlos Castaneda's works for over ten years, and an apprentice
to a living Nagual, I must commend you on the seriousness and intent of
your newsletter. Self responsibility and motivation is the first steps towards
power. Stalking also, must precede dreaming work. If you haven't recapitulated
yourself, you have no place stepping into the Nagual. I urge all readers
to consider this.
Sadly however, I've observed a trace of anti-"drug" sentiment in your first
newsletter, specifically in your "just say no" column.
First, power plants are not "drugs" they are teachers; Walgreens sells drugs.
As the editor relayed his "surviving my power plant phase" with honesty,
in all fairness most people do not use plants for the right reasons or with
respect, thus they deserve to have their wrists slapped by spirit.
I must correct you though, you wrote in relation to don Juan giving Carlos
Peyote "... Don Juan catering to a Carlos who wanted to learn about Peyote.
It hadn't much to do with Nagualism". This is not true. Nagualism is about
breaking down consensual reality conditioning, gaining lost energy and entering
the dreamtime. Don Juan administered the plants to break down the walls
Carlos had erected within himself, they were an essential component.
Many serious and devoted apprentices of Carlos Castaneda, long time students
of his work and authors writing about Carlos, are avid psychedelic plant
users. I suspect if you, for whatever reason, begin a "just say no" policy
within your newsletter, you will turn a lot of folks off, including myself.
It's arrogant to condemn that which we don't understand.
Every indigenous culture on this planet uses psychedelic plants, they are
powerful teachers, allies, spirits, etc. If one uses them for escapism or
thrill seeking you won't get too far. Yet if you use them with the intent
of contacting the spirit of the plant and stripping ego layers away, that's
the correct use. What is important is the intent involved and the amount
of respect towards the plant.
Any biologist, medicine man or Sorcerer (and I know many of each) will tell
you that the planet is an intelligent, self correcting living being which
we are part of. Everything has an intrinsic purpose, including psychedelic
plants. If you, as editor, choose to pass by this gift of the planet, fine,
but please don't preach a "just say no" song to the rest of us. (We heard
enough of this from Bush.)
Around the time of Castaneda, there was a break in the alliance between
sorcerers in Mexico (Naguals). The break was between the old school of manipulative
sorcery and the new school of Liberation/freedom based Nagualismo. There
was a further break, for your information, between sorcerers who excluded
psychedelics from the teachings and those who continue their use as integral
aspects of Nagualismo teachings. Each person must decide for themselves,
it depends on what your spirit tells you, it's not law either way!
Keep up the great energy and work. I look forward to your further issues,
I will certainly relay this newsletter to those I know can appreciate it.
Source: Mark (name used by request)
Editor: My opinion on power plants is only a personal opinion, based on
my own experiences with them. The official newsletter policy is, "you send
it, we'll print it."
I feel obliged to report the following, but before I do, let me say that
since you have a Nagual leader, it doesn't have any bearing on your own
use of power plants.
Besides the lecture notes from Carlos in this issue, which state that he
is specifically telling us not to use power plants, we have lecture notes
from Taisha which say the same. They will be in the next issue, but I feel
it's important for readers who are making up their mind on this issue to
see a couple of quotes from them now. The text in brackets is the note taker's
summary. That outside brackets is a direct quote:
"-[and the assemblage point can also move from the blow of the nagual] [then
a little discourse about how drugs are unnecessary and harmful and were
used in the initial stages with Castaneda only because he was a nagual and
his assemblage point was so difficult to move]"
"-[Abelar] trained to move the assemblage point gradually, through the recapitulation,
never through drugs."
Here's a bonus I didn't want readers to have to wait for (Chiropractor bills
can be so expensive):
"-do not hurt your neck by sweeping too far."
From a seminar by Taisha Abelar, Gaia Bookstore, Nov. 19,1993
Nagualist Newsletter and Open Forum /
2 Aug. /Sept. 1994