Interview 1994 Abelar, Alexander Blair-Ewart
The Art Of Stalking True Freedom
Publication Date: 1994
Taisha Abelar In Conversation with Alexander Blair-Ewart, Part 1.
In the long years when Carlos Castaneda first informed the world of the wonders of American aboriginal spirit knowledge, many recognized that a tradition of great significance had begun to reveal itself to the world. Over the years Castaneda has progressively shown the all-engulfing world view of the Toltecs in its reformed state as a work of spiritual art, shaped by the new seers, who have survived the devastating encounter with European colonial civilization.
Taisha Abelar, author of the new book The Sorcerer's Crossing (Viking Arkana) is one of the new seers whose designation "stalker" balances the world of the "dreamer" [see Dimensions Feb '92 interview with the "dreamer" Florinda Donner]. It is with true delight that we witness the emergence into the world of a new and genuine way of the spirit.
Alexander Blair-Ewart: One meets people who have abandoned reason and logic, and the natural functions of the mind, and who end up in a kind of twilight zone of not really being able to derive any clarity about anything.
Taisha Abelar: Yes, and that was one of the major pitfalls of the old sorcerers, who emphasized dreaming techniques to shift the assemblage point, but they did not have the stalker's technique to balance that out. It's a question of balance, because unless you have the sobriety and the control, what's the point of moving the assemblage point? You move it and you get lost in those realms and you're never able to return to this level, which is what we're doing at this point. We're moving into other realms, but we're also returning to this reality, shifting back and forth. And we have that control.
Abe: So you also call that the 'day' and 'night' sides of consciousness. Is that correct?
Taisha: Yes, you can think of it like that. although, when you are in the night side, you are absolutely in the night side, and that becomes your day. But it's true. You want to be able to maintain an order, because what stalking does is that it has to fixate the assemblage point to a new position, wherever that is.
It could be out in a totally different reality. but you still want, within that, to maintain the sobriety and your consciousness, your awareness, that has to remain intact. And that's where your stalker's techniques come in, because if you lose that, either through fright or indulgence or just sheer ignorance, then you lose everything. It's like you say, you end up in this twilight zone, and you've lost the game, in other words. You want to be able to maintain the order, and in stalking you create the reality wherever you are by creating structure, by imputing order, be reasoning. You can reason even if you're in a totally different realm. You still maintain your awareness. You try to bring order to the inconceivable perceptions, the chaos that is the universe. And so wherever you move the assemblage point, the energy for maintaining your awareness intact has to also be there. So that's the prerequisite for shifting into different realities.
Abe: So your essential being hood, your essential humanity survives this transition into worlds of alternative reality?
Taisha: I wouldn't say your humanity, but...
Abe: ...I said your "essential" humanity...
Taisha: ...your luminous "double".
Taisha: Your luminosity and your awareness, which is the assemblage point, stays intact elsewhere. But it's not human. It doesn't have to be human, and there's the error that we don't want to make. No, you leave everything that's human behind.
Abe: Now, most people would not really want to do that.
Taisha: Exactly, no, they don't. And there's a lot of interest in our work, and in Carlos Castaneda, and in don Juan. But they don't really want it. What they like is an intellectual curiosity, the possibility that there's something else out there, because we all have that as human beings.
Abe: So, in that sense, there's all of the work that Castaneda has published, and Florinda Donner. And now there's this book from you. And I have a hunch that there are going to be other books from other previously unheard of members of that spiritual school or tradition. And yet the books are going out there; literally millions of people, as you know, have read the books; hundreds of thousands of people have tried to do what is in them. And yet we're acknowledging here that this work, this sorcerer's path is really only for the few. Very very few people will actually walk this path. Why did you publish the book?
Taisha: Good question. There's a double answer here. First of all, one reason is that Carlos Castaneda and Florinda Donner, myself and Carol Tiggs, we're the last of don Juan's line; he's the last of that lineage, the end of the line. They didn't know at the time that they were training us--and I came into don Juan's world very young, when I first became an adult. I'd been with don Juan and then with Carlos Castaneda all my adult life--and they didn't know that Carlos Castaneda was going to be the next Nagual, and that he would have his structure of people according to the rule, which is very specific, and sets up the dreamers and stalkers, and it has a certain numerical configuration.
But they trained us in dreaming and stalking and many of the techniques that they use, they handed down to us. but then it turned out Carlos Castaneda is not at all a four-sided Nagual.
A Nagual is one that has four energetic compartments, and this is really a question of the energetic makeup of luminous beings. He's a three-sided Nagual, meaning his mission is different, and one of the major differences is that the Nagual woman who usually goes with the previous Nagual's group, in this case Carol Tiggs, she went with don Juan, but one day she came back. The Nagual Carlos' intent, or Florinda Donner's and mine, we literally hold her back into this reality. In other words, her assemblage point shifted back, so that she is now with us. Now that's absolutely unheard of in all the generations of Naguals and seers in don Juan's lineage. So, because she came back, she gave us that energy of actually writing about our experiences.
Abe: Carol Tiggs came back, and the idea was that she was going to go with don Juan Matus. Taisha: And she did. When they left they took her.
Abe: And Carlos was supposed to find the next Nagual and the next Nagual woman. Then, when he would have taken her and the cycle would have continued. But now this unprecedented thing has occurred. What does it mean?
Taisha: The designs of the Spirit are absolutely different from what they were for don Juan. His group followed the rules, they had a certain training procedure. Although they were abstract, they were in a sense very concrete. They were practitioners of the things that were handed down to them by the previous group. And they handed these things down to us. But the things that we actually only really keep are the most abstract things, like the recapitulation, the idea of impeccability, the things that we do or are not doing, which is the total negation of practices or procedures, and I am going to talk about those. but your question is why is it coming out now, and why are we writing. The Nagual woman gave us this extra energy to bring these things out into the ordinary reality.
Otherwise, unless there's the energy, they would forever remain ideas. Although, we practice them; we are the ideas. There's no difference between what we say and what we do, and that's why we are able to move our assemblage points, because they're not only abstractions, but our bodies actually embody these things. So therefore our assemblage point moves. But unless the energy is there, one is not able to bring it out into this reality for other people to see. So a lot of these things, we've had, we've written down, we've had these things, we were taught them many many years ago.
The things that I write about happened many years ago. But there wasn't that energy to put it out, to give it a concrete form, in other words. The second reason is that, since there are no apprentices, so to speak, the design of the Spirit, and I repeat that, I keep saying that, because it's nothing that we decide...There's no way I can say, oh, I'm going to write this and do this, because I have no volition in that sense. The design of the Spirit decides that this should be coming out now, and so it is, and because, I would say, there is no next generation, in the traditional sense. So it has to be put out to whoever is out there.
And like you say, yes, there are thousands, maybe millions of people that are reading these things. And one of them could practice them and succeed in finding the way. And the reason I say that is because you don't need a teacher. Being abstract, the way all of us are in this last generation, we can see that all you need is like a minimal chance, and idea. Given the word, the possibility that this is what you can do, the recapitulation is like this, and then if somebody does it, they can move their assemblage point, and something will happen and the Spirit or the Intent itself will guide them and teach them. And that's already built into the recapitulation, into the not-doing exercises, into the books themselves. The intent is already there. Okay, so we said that most people won't want to leave the pack. They'll feel that this is not for them. That's the way it is, yes. But, there's some people out there that this will affect, and those are the people for whom the books are written, and who knows what will happen?
Abe: Can you talk in a more specific way about the 'recapitulation'?
Taisha: Okay. What it is is really a very very ancient technique handed down by the old sorcerer's in don Juan's lineage. But it was sort of forgotten by them, because they were more interested in power and having power over others, dominating people, that kind of thing. The furthest thing form their mind was the idea of losing self importance. But the technique was there, and the new sorcerers revived it, so to speak, and it was handed down, and it came to the Nagual Carlos and us. And we now consider it really the fundamental technique in sorcery of all the techniques we learned for moving the assemblage point.
The recapitulation is really the best one for modern man, and the reason we put so much emphasis on it--don Juan put the emphasis on it, too--is because anyone can do it. You don't have to be a "sorcerer's apprentice" or anything like that. Just any individual with minimal interest--they don't even have to be absolutely devoted or anything, but have some curiosity--can start this. It is a technique for erasing the idea of the self, or what the self is, in terms of all the memories and associations with people that one had during one's lifetime. And it's not just an idea. I mean, I say idea, but it's an energetic idea, because when one interacts with persons, energy is exchanged, of course.
Al lot of it is lost or left in things. Through concerns or deep emotions, it's left in the world and in people. And the strategy--because it is a sorcerer's strategy--is to regain that, to bring it back, so you can have it all with you now, in the present. Why leave it floating around in some mysterious past that kind of holds you fixed in the place where you are? So what you do is you sit, you find a place where you have some quiet and solitude, preferably a closet or big box or even a shower, because you want an enclosed space--the sorcerers used to have their recapitulation boxes, where they would bury themselves, or be in a cave. I started mine in a small cave. Something that encloses the energetic body, so that there's some pressure put on the luminous self. Before you sit, you make out your list.
You have a list of everyone that you've every met, encountered, had anything to do with throughout your life. So this takes some doing, and some remembering. This remembering, in itself, sort of loosens the assemblage point. So it's kind of like a preliminary exercise. By going back in your mind and remembering everybody that you've every known, you work from the present backwards, and you write down all the people that you've worked with, your family, your associates, everybody that you've had anything to do with. Actually you make two lists. First of all your sexual experiences.
Anyone that you've had any sexual dealings with. And sorcerers always say you start there, because that's the fundamental energy that's lost out there, and if you retrieve that, then that will give you the boost to do your other people. So you have your two lists, and then you sit in your recapitulation box, cave or closet, and you start the breathing.
The third element besides the lists and the box or the place is the breath. And the breath is very important, because the breathing is what disentangles the energy. And this is already set up by Intent. Our interaction with others is done with our energetic body, and the breath moves the luminous fibers. You start on your right shoulder, where you put your hand--actually I describe this in my book pretty well--but you start on your right shoulder, and when you have set up the scene of people and places in your mind, you've situated everything and you've visualized it to perfection in all its detail, then you have your chin on your right shoulder and you breath in, turning your head to your left shoulder, and then you exhale moving your head back to your right shoulder, and then bring you head to the centre. You sweep it; it's like a sweeping of the scene.
You just sweep the whole room or person or place, whatever. And you pull back whatever of that other person's energy was left in you. You exhale it and give it back. In a sense you detach yourself from that particular encounter. And you do this with everything.
FORMLESS AND PATTERNLESS:
After you've done it with your whole life, you detach pretty much from your remembered past. This is not an analysis, by the way. It's not meant to be like a real self analysis, but you can't help seeing in the way you act and behave and what is expected of you, a pattern forming, and absolute pattern emerging. And with the breath, you break that pattern. So what you essentially want to do is move into formless, patternless behavior, which is the way a sorcerer acts. He's absolutely fluid. And that brings us back to stalking.
A stalker is someone who makes himself unobtrusive, the art of being unobtrusive. He had no self, no pattern, nothing to assert, no point to make, no demands, no desires. And all this will be eliminated through the recapitulation. And then there's some other things that really need to be done with that, and that's quieting the internal dialogue.
So that when you're now here it this today, you have all your energy with you so that you don't persist in repeating that same patterns of behavior. And the way these patterns are ingrained in us is through that internal dialogue, in which we keep repeating certain things to ourselves, like "Oh, I'm no good" or "They don't like me" or "I have to be like this, prove myself here". Whatever goes through one's mind, which is a constant flow of thoughts or reaffirmations, really, of the self. And so, the sorcerers say that you really need to put a stop to that continual reinforcement of the self, which is that position of the assemblage point.
Now when you do the breathing with the recapitulation, by moving back into the past, moving forward into now, and that intense concentration that is needed to sit there and visualize these things, that shifts your assemblage point minutely. And whoever does the recapitulation will see that.
They'll see that oh, god, I'm doing this again, and ten years later doing it again. The same kind of relationships, again, the same type of man, the same type of woman. We know somebody who says he always picks difficult women. (laughter) I don't know what that means, but it's true. It's like this person is doomed to have difficult relationships. So patterns get repeated, no matter what they are, and whoever recapitulates will see that. So the seer within us gets to break out. And then, as you do this and you go back into your regular day to day life, you become more quiet, and then you do these techniques once a week to quiet the internal dialogue, and some of them are described in my book.
There's lots of things like this in Carlos Castaneda's books on gazing, certain gazing techniques. Or you can do a match gazing technique. You just hold up the flame for a moment, and then you douse the tip of it, and then you turn it upside down, after you've kind of cooled off the tip while it's still burning, turn it upside down and hold it in your left hand and look at the flame as it burns the bottom of the match in front of your eyes, and that quiets the mind.
You can use any minor meditation techniques. I wouldn't say go heavily into Oriental meditation techniques, because you're already doing recapitulation and you don't want to get fixed into any form. All we're doing now as abstract sorcerers is a minimal of technique so that we can get away from the self. We don't want to get heavier in the area of ego and ego enforcement, and "now we're meditators", or "now we're..."
Abe: So you don't want to build up an image of yourself, even as a spiritual person.
Taisha: No, you don't. You don't want to add to that. And when you look at how much you have to get rid of you'll be kind of careful not to add more. (laughter) And you don't want to add more in terms of becoming more important in other areas, just because you're getting rid of some of these old things. But you're putting that energy into fighting with your husband or wife. And that's where impeccability comes in. You want to maintain your daily behavior on an impeccable level, and that means you just do your best, your humble best. We're no longer interested in reasserting the ego or the self, or defending the self.
The brunt of energy really goes into defense of the self, because if it's attacked left and right...I mean, you can't go out of your house...even in your house, there's always something that is threatening, or your boss says something somebody looks at you the wrong way, and they gip you, this or that. Right away you have to go back and build up "I'm not that bad. They don't understand me." The mind rallies like lightning trying to patch up these things. No, you don't let it go.
You're not interesting in defense of the self anymore. You're interested in getting rid of the self, in culminating the self. And don Juan had a good adage. He said, "Eliminate the self and fear nothing." So, if you don't have a self there's absolutely nothing to fear, because all the fears, the disappointments, everything comes from the idea of the self, or certain expectations that aren't met. Not just negative things, but if good things happen, then you feel good, you know. So it goes both ways. Stalkers, then are really indifferent, they're detached, and that gets us back to how we started this conversation.
What stalkers really want to do is detach themselves from the self, which is saying that they want to detach the awareness from that position of the assemblage point where society, our parents, the sheer fact that we were born into a certain family, have certain relationships, has put us, has forced us, has imprisoned us, really.
So when we recapitulate and detach ourselves from everything that's every happened, we're floating. The assemblage point becomes free. It can move, and very harmoniously. It can move without the aid of drugs, without the aid of some external person or Nagual. Because any time you have something external, you're not free, you're dependent on that thing.
So the only thing that the modern sorcerer, or the stalker is really dependent on is something so abstract that he calls it the Spirit, the Unknown. By getting rid of the self, they give the self to the Eagle as a token. They give themselves in a symbolic death. And in that sense the Eagle, they say, allows the impeccable warrior to escape. And what that's metaphorically saying is that a person who has recapitulated and disentangled his energy from the expectations of the everyday world is able to move elsewhere.
He's able to do dreaming with control, because even in dreaming he has no self. And this differentiates, again, the old sorcerers from the modern ones. When the old sorcerers did dreaming, they had very heavy ego and then of course they got lost and trapped in different levels of dreaming. They weren't able to move out again, because they were too heavy. But they had their ideas of power and they became obsessive. The stalker is absolutely not obsessed with anything. He treats the whole world as 'controlled folly'.
What that means is that everything is there to be used. There's order; there's a structure. But it's not to be taken seriously, because there are other orders, other structures, an infinite number of layers to this onion of reality, and he can go elsewhere. But wherever he is, he creates his order and his structure, and when the Spirit moves him, something moves the assemblage point, and he moves elsewhere. And he's impeccable in his dreams, he's impeccable in this everyday reality, if and when he's here.
But a stalker begins here in the everyday world, and that's why this recapitulation is really for everyone. They begin here, right wherever anyone is. That's where they start. And they start with their list and their place, they sweep the past, then they make themselves quiet internally, so that they don't accumulate more of the debris, using certain gazing methods--and I don't mean acrobatics or anything like that-- but there's some sorcery passes that have been handed down.
Or just sitting quietly--you don't even have to call it meditating--just shut off the internal dialogue. And you elongate these moments of silence. And then you have the power that comes from sheer silence. That in itself will allow the assemblage point to move from your everyday state into heightened awareness. Then, that's when the practitioner--you don't even have to call them sorcerers-- that's when they enter heightened awareness. It's when they have that ability to have the silence extend itself into whatever they're doing.
And they're active. If you've working, if you're driving, do whatever, but do it silently, because you don't have the idea of the self impinging. And them, of course, you use the petty tyrants of the world, because okay, so you've recapitulated... and I have to mention here that there's not just one recapitulation...it's really an ongoing process, because after you're finished all the sexual encounters, then you do everybody whom you've encountered in your life.
Then you can go back to certain themes. Like you notice that there are still things like when you're working, or something happens during the day, you notice oh boy, that gave me a jolt, that really bothered me. Then you can see why did it bother you, and you can use certain themes. Like wanting to be liked seems to be so common. Everybody seems to want somebody to like them, support them, approve of them. That has to go, but that's a very strong driving force that keeps us in line, because as long as you still have that, it's just like the carrot being dangled in front of your nose. Whatever it is that somebody dangles out there that your body naturally would react to...
Abe: Would you say it's a major accomplishment, then, on that part of the would be seer when they reach a point where they are no longer concerned with whether or not they're liked?
Taisha: Yes, that's a major accomplishment. Absolutely. That is, for someone who is very concerned with that. Now, maybe there are the rare few that maybe just don't care, honestly. They have enough energy. And you know what that hinges on, really? Being liked, wanting to be liked? The sorcerers have a theory about the idea of the energy you were given at your conception. If your parents liked each other, and I mean sexually, if they had a very grand time, a great, great sexual experience, both of them, mother and father, when that child is conceived that child will have this great burst of energy.
And he may not care whether people really like him or not because he has this intrinsic sense of energetic well-being. but, if one of the parents are bored--the sorcerer don Juan always called them 'bored conceptions'--or if they were made out of a very boring experience, with not much flash. Or maybe the partners didn't even like each other, they just went through the motions of having sex because they were married and it was the thing to do Friday night, then that child will come out into the world with really a disadvantage.
And he will always feel that something is missing, and he wants to be liked. He wants his peers to like him, he wants his mama to like him, and she may not even like him at all. But that is not just theory, but it's something that sorcerers have arrived at through their seeing. They actually see how energetic a luminous being is. They can see how the energy moves. In some people it's very sluggish, stagnant, and of course that expresses itself in a very meek or low level zest for life. they sort of just barely get through the day. That kind of feeling. But others have a lot of energy. They meet everything as a challenge. Everything to them is an adventure.
They dominate people naturally. They have this charisma, sort of a mesmeric effect on others, and on things around them. And they may not have this need, they're not as needy as other people they want to be liked and are needy.
Abe: Of course, then that person who has all that energy, will attract all kinds of needy people who want to suck on it. (laughter)
Taisha: Exactly. And you attract those people. The sorcerers say that the self is really a metaphorical dagger that we stab ourselves with. but, it's alright as long as we bleed in company.
As long as there are others bleeding with us, we're okay. (laughter) As long as somebody else feels worse, we're happy. But the recapitulation will give those needy people...and I have to include myself in that category, because absolutely I was not a product of a zestful union...so those are demons and you will see them in the recapitulation. And that's why I say that the recapitulation is never done, because even when I was with don Juan and his people...okay with the, they had enough energy to cover up, let's say for my deficiency. Their energy would elevate me to this heightened level.
But the minute they were gone or even left the room, I would slump back to my own natural level, and then I would want attention. And all the apprentices were like that. And of course they would test us by ignoring us, or not speaking to us, or doing things with others when we wanted to be included. So when I say recapitulation, it has to be tried and tested in the everyday world. You can't just escape into the desert and do it, and then feel good and that's the end of it.
You have to get back with your mother, with your father. What do they do to you for you to react like the little girl, the little boy that wants mommy to do his laundry, to take care of his tummy? We still have those feelings. So, just recapitulation by itself is not enough. Stalkers stalk the self, and so when they're with people in the world, they're constantly stalking themselves and seeing what's happening.
End of Part 1.
© Copyright Dimensions Magazine
Publication Date: 1994
The Art Of Stalking True Freedom
Publication Date: 1994
Taisha Abelar in conversation with Alexander Blair-Ewart, Part 2.
In the long years when Carlos Castaneda first informed the world of the wonders of American aboriginal spirit knowledge, many recognized that a tradition of great significance had begun to reveal itself to the world. Over the years Castaneda has progressively shown the all-engulfing worldview of the Toltecs in its reformed state as a work of spiritual art, shaped by the new seers, who have survived the devastating encounter with European colonial civilization.
Taisha Abelar is one of the new seers whose designation "stalker" balances the world of the "dreamer" [see Dimensions Feb.'92 interview with the "dreamer" Florinda Donner]. It is with true delight that we witness the emergence into the world of a new and genuine way of the spirit.
Alexander Blair-Ewart: Recognizing that this is a complex subject that can be understood only by people who are genuinely interested, can I get you to talk about stalking?
Taisha Abelar: That's a question that comes up often when I give lectures. People want to know exactly what is stalking. And there's two ways of approaching this. First, just a general definition is that a stalker is really someone who has made an art out of being unobtrusive. And that is he puts himself in the background, and there's a certain training that is involved in order to become unobtrusive, and I can tell you why it is necessary to be unobtrusive.
Let me give you a couple other ways of talking about stalking. It's designed to give the sorcerer or the practitioner a jolt, and by a jolt we mean a push or a slight burst of energy, so that the assemblage point shifts ever so slightly. Now, I think I have to talk about the assemblage point because that is exactly what the stalkers are aiming at. They're aiming to move or shift the assemblage point, and through that to change the perception of the world.
Perception, of course, can be changed through dreaming, but stalkers do it while they're awake. So the way sorcerers perceive the world is that they say that everything we see, while we are awake in this reality is a question of the position of the assemblage point. I'm sure you're familiar with Castaneda's books, and you know what the assemblage point is, but let me just describe it again. It is the focused awareness point of luminosity on the luminous cocoon (aura--ed). We believe that the human being's energetic body is a mass of fibers of light that have infinite number, and each one of those is a specific awareness. So that they're not just light like electricity, but they're actually light like awareness. And on the luminous egg shape that makes up the energetic body there is a point of extra luminosity where the concentration of the person, his awareness, is assembled, and that point of luminosity is about the size of a golf ball, from the point of view of the 'seer' who sees the person's luminous being. But it can change size; it also can change position on the luminous body.
Now, where that is located determines what is perceived, because there's a matching of the fibers that are lit up within the luminous body and the fibers that are out in the universe at large, because sorcerers also maintain, of course, that the universe us a whole is an infinite number of both energetic fibers, some of which are perceivable, and others which are absolutely beyond our capacities as human beings to perceive. But where the position of this assemblage point is, this lighted up area on the luminous being, when that matches what is outside, then perception takes place.
Abe: Would this apply to everyone?
Taisha: We all have our assemblage point at pretty much the same place, because as an infant is born, by virtue of the fact that he is going to be a human infant and a human being, a social person, he has to match the location of his assemblage point to that of other human beings in the world so that he can interact with them, and perceive the same world, the same segment of the possibility of perception that is open to him, so that we can all agree as to what we are perceiving.
Because our assemblage points are in the same place, we can have language, we can talk about trees and cars and solid walls and floors, and we can have a spatial and temporal continuity; we know that there was a yesterday, there'll be a tomorrow. All of that has to do with the position of the assemblage point. Time, our conception of everything we know to be so, is determined by where that heightened point of concentration awareness is located. And if by some anomaly it is not in the place where the human assemblage point ought to be, then these people are either sorcerers, (and we'll talk about that in a moment), or they're a candidate for the mentally ill.
So you find these people in asylums, because their assemblage points are not fixed at the position where other human beings have theirs fixed. Therefore they don't have this intersubjectivity in terms of perception. And they can't have the agreements to what constitutes reality.
There's a mandate, let's say, even a biological mandate that says that all human beings should have their assemblage point at this particular position so they can be what we call human. Animals have it at different places, and that's what fixes their species of animal. Trees have their assemblage point at a certain place in their luminous shell, and that makes them trees.
Abe: So could we also call the assemblage point the position of collective persona reality agreement?
Taisha: Exactly. It's our persona, it's our person. Now this person, sorcerers say, is not all that we are humanly capable of being. So we can we be more than just a social person. Now, in order to be more than what society, or what our birthright, has put forth for us, we have to move or shift the place of the assemblage point.
We have to move it out of its position where it is stuck. So, not only is the assemblage point capable of moving elsewhere, but when it does, other luminous intelligent fibers of awareness are lit up and matched with the universe, and therefore other realities are constituted, and these other realities are as real and solid as the one we are in now, because the reason this reality where we are now is what we call undeniably real is because of the agreement that we have that this is what the world is like.
And that is based on the fixation of the assemblage point. If it moves- and it does; it moves in dreams, by itself- we call that dream reality, to be separated of course from the waking state. So we acknowledge that there are other realms of experience, but we always refer to them from the position of everyday reality.
But sorcerers don't do that. They say that you can move the everyday reality while you're awake. You don't have to do dreaming... Dreaming, of course, is the control of the movement of the assemblage point in sleep, in dreams, and the fixation of it elsewhere.
Abe: And you can do it without being insane.
Abe: That in itself is an enormously revolutionary statement.
Taisha: Because our agreement says that yes, there's crazy people out there that have hallucinations. They see monsters and what not. But they're somehow deficient and in this sense, from the point of view of the social order, yes, they're deficient in the sense that they have not stabilized their assemblage point where everyone else has placed it. Somehow their assemblage point is in flux, it's constantly shifting, and therefore of course they're crazy because they're hallucinating, and they don't have the energy to maintain it at any one given position. If they did have that energy and the control, then they would be sorcerers, because they would be stalking that new position.
Abe: Yes, I see that.
Taisha: So what this all really boils down to is a question of having the energy to perceive more than we are allowed to perceive given the fact that we are born as human beings. Our social order doesn't allow us to venture into other realms except through insanity or through dreams, which they don't really count as real anyway.
So those are two avenues that are open, but they're not really viable avenues. Now sorcerers say you can move the assemblage point, provided you have enough energy to fix it at another position, because you don't want to end up crazy and absolutely lost in these worlds upon worlds that they maintain exist out there, like the layers of an onion. So what is needed is control, energy and fluidity. And what they call 'unbending intent'.
Now the fluidity enables one to shift the assemblage point to move away from the given spot that makes us persons, and we'll get back to this, because what this given spot that makes us persons really is what we call the self.
And that's where self-importance has to go out the window because as long as we maintain our allegiance to the self, what we're really doing is maintaining our allegiance to that particular position of the assemblage point. We'll never be able to perceive anything beyond what the taken-for-granted reality out there is. We're allowed only to perceive what is permissible by our given position within the social order.
So we need fluidity to move the assemblage point elsewhere, and then we need the stability, the concentration, the energy to fix it on another position. And this is what sorcery really is, the movement and the fixation, fixing again the assemblage point at the different positions, thereby lighting up different realities that are just as concrete and real as what we take as reality of the everyday world.
Abe: So sorcerers foster and cultivate energy in unique ways, and there's a way of fostering and cultivating dreaming energy, and your book is primarily about the way in which you foster and cultivate stalking energy. Would that be right?
Taisha: Precisely. There are techniques, there are devices that sorcerers do, and they include 'not doing' techniques, 'recapitulation', which is the fundamental technique of enabling the assemblage point to move off its spot of the self, things like 'losing personal history', which also enables one to move away from what our expectation or our idea is of the self.
Losing self- importance is the key, of course, because as I said, as long as we have this idea of a self, a strong self, an ego, a personality with which we interact with others in terms of an intersubjective agreement, they hold us. You see, the strength of the world, of the social order, is so gigantic through the agreement of billions of people holding that assemblage point at that particular spot.
Abe: So, at a really crass level, you could call it 'peer pressure', and at a universal level you could call it 'the spirit of the times'. Taisha: Yes. At a very individual level you could call it 'self-indulging' or one's idea of the self, and then peer pressure. Exactly, all that, and then at a larger level the language itself, on a cultural level, and we have to get to the family, because that's fundamental, and you have to break through each of those barriers- individual, peer, family, cultural- and then some gigantic collective unconsciousness that holds everything in place.
A sorcerer has to jump out of all of that onto a different level.
And then even behind this collective unconscious, you have the biological mandate that we're really trapped in this 'ape mold'. We have our biological drive, we need to be social, gregarious beings because we're social animals. Solitude is something that frightens people to death. I mean, that's one of the killers of neophytes, the idea that they have to have a solitary journey, a solitary quest, because the recapitulation is done in absolute solitude.
But people think, well, they can meditate together, do things together, as long as they still have a group consensus. But you see, it's that very group consensus that prevents the subtle movement of the assemblage point. So you do have to get beyond that force, and you have to have the energy, and the energy comes from all the things that I mentioned before, including impeccability, and also using your death. You give a death, because you'll end up giving a death anyway.
If you follow the sorcerer s path, if one wishes to move away from the self, from that given position of the assemblage point, and venture into the unknown, then it is like dying. The self has to capitulate, and it's a horrendous feeling. Emotionally, physically, it is like, you know, man against the universe.
Abe: And that death is protracted, isn't it? I mean, it doesn't happen in one miraculous moment. It's something that progressively occurs. It will take years. When do you know you've really done it? When do you know that you've finally died to that old self, or become what is called in the literature a 'formless warrior'?
Taisha: You have to be formless. You have to not have a self. First of all, like you say, it's not a sudden process, although it can be. The movement of the assemblage point can be, in some people, in some anomalous cases, sudden, or under a great shock all of a sudden it moves elsewhere, and a different reality is constituted in front of the person. All of a sudden he's somewhere else. But that usually doesn't last because it comes from an external force, and it usually shifts back. If it does last, he won't know what happened to him, and those are the cases for the asylums, the institutions. So, a gradual change is best Abe: I take it that drugs, power plants, can also induce this?
Taisha: Yes, exactly. That too. Under the influence of psychotropic drugs you see different worlds, and the assemblage point is absolutely blasted out of its position. But you are not doing that, you don't have the control, again it's an external agent. The sheer presence of a Nagual moves the assemblage point, too. His impeccability can move the assemblage point in his students. He doesn't have to give them the slap on the back or anything like that.
Sheer energy can cause apprentices to assemble different worlds. But you see, there again, whenever we were in the presence of Don Juan and his people, their force made us do fantastic things. Those things 1 write about in my book. But, when I came back to Los Angeles and they weren't around, there I was. I had the force of the social order on top of me, and my assemblage point moved back into the 'first attention'.
And the tragedy, of course, is that unless you move your assemblage point back to the places that it was under the influence of don Juan and his people, you barely remember what you did or what those worlds consisted of. They're like dreams. So you have to store the energy to allow it to move into heightened awareness, so that you can maintain it there on your own, and venture. And then you move it further, and it's a gradual shift.
Abe: How do you store or keep the energy to move your assemblage point?
Taisha: The 'recapitulation' is the major one. I just want to mention that another way of moving it is sheer impeccability, by intending the movement. Intent is really a line, a force that connects one directly with the energy out there at large. And, because it has an intelligence, a guiding order of sorts. They call it the Spirit, the Eagle. But when man links his personal energy to the energy out there through impeccable acts, then the Spirit itself moves the assemblage point for him, because in a sense he has relinquished control.
He has relinquished himself, his ego. He has let go, and is allowing the guiding force of intent to move him. And all of these sorcery activities that I mentioned, the recapitulation, all the not-doings, all those have the sorcerer's intent already linked to them. So a person just has to do these things and let the intent take him, and his assemblage point will move, because these are ancient techniques that have been handed down from generations within Don Juan's lineage, and they have already that link to the Spirit out there inherent in them.
So the necessity of storing energy we already know, because that's the only way to get out of the mold that we are born into as humans. We always like to talk in terms of the human ape, because it really puts man in a proper perspective.
Abe: Are you using that, though, as a metaphor, in the sense that what I understand is that these luminous beings that we are actually, in the process of "time", took on the form that we now have, that at some point we intended ourselves human or flesh and blood, but that what we intrinsically are is something that comes from that vast 'out there', but that we haven't, in the normal sense of evolution, evolved from monkeys? I mean, is that something that you deal with at all? I accept the ape metaphor very well. But the theory of evolution has never managed to explain to me how come we have these other capacities in us.
Taisha: Ah hah. And what sorcerers say is that we are continually evolving. Therefore we should not stay or limit ourselves to that ape-like position of the assemblage point. As you say, within the luminosity of human beings is the potential for an infinite number of other possibilities. Yes, I would agree with you, that from the point of view of evolution we have sort of stopped there, and encrusted ourselves at that position. But the force of evolution continues.
Sorcerers are beings who at one time were human beings. But they have evolved to something else. They are no longer human beings in the strict sense of the word, because they can move their assemblage point elsewhere and maintain those positions, and actually change their form. They don't have to maintain their human form. They can move downwards, shift down to the animal level, and they can change shape into animals, into crows, into birds, or any other animal or entity. Or they can shift into inconceivable realms that have no physical counterparts, but are abstractions.
Abe: So there are old and new seers?
Taisha: What the new sorcerers are doing...there is a distinction between the old sorcerers and the new sorcerers in Don Juan's lineage, or the modern day sorcerers, Don Juan and his teacher the Nagual Julian, and Don Juan's apprentice, the new Nagual Carlos Castaneda. These are all modern day sorcerers, and what they're interested in is this evolution towards the abstract, away from any of these downward shifts that are so easy to do in dreaming when the assemblage point by itself finds these positions.
And for that reason all of the people associated with Carlos Castaneda, we're university graduates, educated, clear thinkers (hopefully). I mean, that is one of our tasks. An actual sorcery task is to be able to think coherently, to think clearly, to see where we are as human beings, and what our potential is, and be able to see and get to this level of actual truth, not only through reason, but using reason in its strictest sense, and not in the shoddy sense of reasoning something and then acting some other way totally in contradiction, which is what human beings do.
End of Part 2.
© Copyright Dimensions Magazine
Publication Date: 1994