Jim Silberman, Editor, Obit in the New York Times

Jim was beloved by many. The New York Times obituary reminds us of his stellar career:

James Silberman, a revered book editor whose meticulousness, intuition and patience helped propel the publishing careers of a distinguished roster of authors, including James Baldwin, Marilyn French, Hunter S. Thompson and Alvin Toffler, died on July 26 at his home in Manhattan. He was 93

In his office the photo brings him to life. How many times I walked into that office, how many authors did, to find this assured editor, at home in his own skin, a listener, astute, ready to find a solution to whatever problem existed. He was gentle but firm, a true lover of books. He figures strongly in the plot of The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S. Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Legend. After all,  he was his Hunter’s book editor, which is how I come in, as Jim’s copy editor (also assistant editor) on that book, Hell’s Angels. As with James Baldwin and others, Jim just plucked them out of the obscurity or a difficult position and righted their careers. Decades later, for  the Letters book, I interviewed Jim four times. Below is a miniscule excerpt of one of those interviews that you can find in the Letters:

As the telephone interview with Jim begins (in 2011), I tell him I’m going to talk into the tape recorder. I open by asking how he got involved with Hell’s Angels.

JS: [Bernard] Shir-Cliff read the piece in the Nation and sent it to me.

MAH [repeating into the tape recorder]: So, you’re saying Shir-Cliff read the piece in the Nation and sent it to you.

JS: Yes.

MAH: OK. And then you went out to San Francisco, I guess.

JS: Ballantine and Random House made a deal with Hunter.

MAH: Yeah, and I guess after that—

JS: I went out to San Francisco to collect a manuscript from him.

Ed’s Note: In June 1966

MAH: [laughs] That was still a hard thing.

JS: He wasn’t sending it. I went out there to get it away from him.

MAH: Yeah. And I guess you had some luck.

JS: [explains about Hunter being under contract] He was having trouble—not writing, but he was having trouble pulling the book together.

MAH: Right.

MAH: OK. So you went out there. But you were a wonderful influence. I’m sure that you would give a steady hand to him; I’m sure he would feel that. And pressure too.

JS: He must have all those years ’cause we were together a long time.

MAH: I’m going to repeat that: “He must have all those years’ cause we were together a long time.” You surely were. I mean, all the time you were with him he was productive.

JS: Yep.

We cover many topics. But that is a snippet. What stands out about it is that the official line in Hunter’s biography omits the fact that Jim went out there and builds an incredible tale around the fact that he did not. To read about Jim in the New York Times obituary, click here. It’s well worth a read: a true giant, very very intelligent, meticulous, gentle sharp on the money, my friend, my boss for a while. Central to my New York City years. His wife Selma Shapiro Silberman was also part of the Random House scene back then. And she survives him after decades of a happy marriage in which, near the end, he said, “We laugh a lot.”

I am so pleased that the day before Jim died, I emailed (which I rarely did) with an announcement of the book publication and a photo of the cover. I think it would mean something to him, as he always rooted for me. Suppose I hadn’t phoned two weeks before. Suppose I hadn’t sent the email. But I did:

Hi, Jim and Selma,

This is the book. A complimentary copy is in the mail to you and should arrive next week.

Would you let me know you received it. I hope you like it. The interviews in the back are a very important part of the story, and Jim was vital there to adding context. I so appreciated that. I enjoyed talking with you and hope Jim is faring better. Warmly, Margaret

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Available to Order: THE “HELL’S ANGELS” LETTERS

THE HELL’S ANGELS LETTERS: HUNTER S. THOMPSON, MARGARET HARRELL AND THE MAKING OF AN AMERICAN CLASSICMargaret Harrell

9 x 12 PB ∙ 298 Pgs ∙ $60.00 ∙ ISBN 978-1-60052-167-6
IN COLOR

Collaborator: Ron Whitehead

Book available to Order HERE

** The temporary website glitch is fixed.

First official reader review in:

The Hell’s Angels Letters is a unique combination: at the center is Hunter Thompson’s letters to his contact person at Random House as his bestseller Hell’s Angels comes into being. (That contact continues thereafter.) Beside this is the admiring and excited perspective of that beautiful young woman at Random House, who then changes course to set off on some adventures of her own. (She turns out to be very interesting and deep in her own way, becoming more complex as she matures.) Interwoven is a history of the times, from literary and political perspectives, with a cast of characters from then. Plus interviews and short articles by authorities exploring Hunter Thompson’s  legacy. Photographs. And witty cartoons. 

I found this highly accessible book intriguing in a down-to-Earth very human way, requiring not metaphors, but rather—it seems to me—a deeply self-revealing honesty. I have liked it tremendously.

Virginia Williams, PhD, President of Williams LifeSkills

Official Launch July 18 – Hunter’s 83rd birthday – at the Canessa Gallery in San Francisco. That event is postponed due to Covid. But the book is LIVE. And there are online events planned.

The “Hell’s Angels” Letters – Front Cover: Grant Goodwine

The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S. Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic is an important revelation in the legacy of Thompson, with letters that survived precarious shipping and travel over decades, cloaked away from the public. “If Hell’s Angels hadn’t happened I never would have been able to write Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas or anything else . . . I felt like I got through a door just as it was closing,” Hunter told Paris Review. When he secured a hardcover contract with Jim Silberman (Random House), the known part of the story breaks off. To whip up the final edits, Margaret A. Harrell, a young copy editor/assistant editor to Jim, was—in a break from the norm—given full rein to work with him by expensive long-distance phone and letter. This galvanizing action led to a fascinating tale. She uses the letters to resuscitate the cloaked, suspenseful withheld drama. The book peaks in their romantic get-together at his ranch twenty-one years after they last met, a moving tie maintained over the years.

Details: 150 scans, mostly in color
abt 75 full-page scans of letters by Hunter to Margaret

Collaborator: Ron Whitehead

Illustrator: Grant Goodwine

Aspen Photographer: Alan Becker

I am happy to finally be able to say this is days away from publication. It’s a monster of a book. With flaps and the works. Printed by Norfolk Press of San Francisco, headed by a publisher who has a strong artistic bent used to printing high-end magazines and art books.

Though technically paperback, it is a high quality, stiff, heavy – coffee table durable, ultra-solid cover. If you would like a copy, please order on the above website, as it is NOT available on Amazon, to keep the price down.

This is a book of a writer trying to make his way through the publishing world, meeting another writer, at Random House. It is also a love story. The book itself is heavily, creatively designed. Thank you for your interest in this.

Journalism Biography

Margaret had a challenging and trusted relationship with Hunter as his Assistant Editor in 1966 while working on his first published book, Hell’s Angels, at Random House. Margaret’s energy was noted by Hunter as she chose to be available 24/7. Thus dealing with Hunter’s “many demands” . . . My guess is that Hunter said: “I have certain punctuations and wording that must be accepted as is . . . Never change anything without running it by me.” Margaret gets an award for “Rolling with Hunter” at a very important time while launching his first book.

Deborah Fuller, longtime personal assistant
and trusted confidante of Hunter Thompson

Margaret is a natural resource and I’m not sure what the world would do without her. We’re lucky that she shares with us a saga of a long friendship, the work it produced and the legacy it left behind.

William McKeen, author of
Outlaw Journalist: The Life and Times of Hunter S. Thompson

Hunter was famous for taking limits—to expense accounts and word counts, to deadlines and behavior—as a challenge to blow through. “Never call 911. Never. This means You,” he wrote in a note pinned to a wall in his house, a remarkable admonition when you think about it. That attitude inspired wild books and wild behavior. For too long, the latter obscured the former. Finally, as his life recedes into history, we are beginning to see the work plain. The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S. Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic a fine gift that tales is back to where it all began.
David Streitfeld, New York Times Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist,
author of Hunter S. Thompson: The Last Interview

It was no easy task working with Hunter. . . . A select few people, however, were held in high esteem by The Good Doctor. One such person is Margaret Harrell . . . Five decades later, she is still correcting errors in the narrative in aid of the truth.

Rory Patrick Feehan, author of the Irish PhD dissertation The Genesis of the Hunter Figure

Left Flap

Most people wind up going against their instincts, and it makes them miserable for the rest of their lives.
—Hunter S. Thompson

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Once upon a Time a Dancer – “The ‘Hell’s Angels’ Letters”

The collage was made by Geoffrey Smith in  Belgium in 2000 or 2001. We sat there in his apartment as he started building my first website (he was a friend and an Oracle expert). So I laid out photos and he said, Ah. Have to use this. It was a Fred Astaire of Park Avenue, New York, photo of me with my legs wrapped around my professional male partner’s waist. He was holding on to me only by his thumbs! And I was like the masthead of a ship. It was for a competition. I had characteristically kept the dancer photos in a drawer. My Belgian boyfriend, Willy  Van Luyten, had hung them on the walls. Now, Geoff was making them even more public.

In The Hell’s Angels Letters, I interview Hunter Thompson’s Random House editor, the editor-in-chief Jim Silberman. I ask him if he remembers why I left Random House to teach briefly at the Fred Astaire studio:

Transcriptions of Telephone
interview with Jim Silberman
Early in February 2011—only my side of the
conversation is on the tape

I start by telling him I have a publisher/editor for Keep This Quiet! My Relationship with Hunter S. Thompson, Milton Klonsky, and Jan Mensaert who pleases me and this publisher wants me to turn the narrative about my leaving Random House into a scene.

That’s not, you know, the only reason I called. But I thought, wouldn’t it be wonderful to mention that to you, to see if you have any reaction. I remember that it was just after Robert Kennedy was assassinated; that prompted me to think how life could change at any moment, and you know I was working on [my own book] and I was just spurred and triggered to put all my intention onto it. That was my motivation—his assassination. So I think it was without any real warning that I went in and said this to you. Do you remember it that way or differently?

JS [bringing the scene into his mind, recalls how I spent time at the dance studio] I thought you were getting ready to move on to whatever would be the next part of your life.

MAH: [Laughs] You sound like the very wisest man in the world, to me.

I want to ask one more question about that and then move on to Hunter. Can you describe your office to me? I think there were windows behind you and a desk, with the back to the windows. Is that even right?

JS [Correct]

MAH: And was it a kind of big desk or what?

JS: I inherited a formal, old-style office desk.

MAH: What exactly—what was it made of?

JS [mentions a leather top on a wood desk, “as I remember”]

The interview of course goes on. Jim and I had last had contact probably in the 1980s. This was about 25 years later. He was approaching over 80. (Don’t ask about me.) One of the riches the Letters book bestowed on me was the walks down memory lane. If you want to read on, go to the Norfolk Press of San Francisco website (I think Firefox works best, as Norfolk is updating its software that Apple discontinued). Or buy directly from me, signed.

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NEW Luminous Body and Self-Exciting Classes

In August I will be teaching “Building Your Luminous Body,” which is Part Two of “Evolving into Your Luminous Body.” Prerequisite: Awakening Your Light Body. If you have taken Part One, “Discovering the Luminous Body,” that is all the better. But some people will be able to join this class (online or in person) if they only have the prerequisite. Check with me if interested.

Duane writes:

In this course learn more about freeing yourself from limiting thoughts and beliefs.

As you build your luminous body you will have more ability to notice the details and energy of thoughts, also called “thought forms,” and to notice the higher order thought forms, such as those that contain divine ideas that will unfold as ever-increasing love, joy, peace, and positive circumstances. You will learn how to recognize and release thoughts and beliefs from society so that you can look out at the world and your circumstances with greater clarity, wisdom, and understanding. You will be able to experience life in the light of the “real” and to let go of the misconceptions and fogs of the unreal that cloud humanity’s thinking.

You will be able to let go of being influenced by lesser thought forms and beliefs held by much of humanity such as those that bring pain, suffering, lack, and limitation. You will be freer than ever of the confusion caused by the ever-present lesser thoughts that you live in and around. You will become aware in greater detail what thoughts and assumptions you take for granted, giving you the ability to shift them. You begin to let that be a way of being, building the luminous body so that it encompasses your entire presence and being on the earth plane, so that energy and clarity is always available to you at any level, including at a personality level.

As you build your luminous body it becomes easier to stay connected to a higher, clearer light and to have the thought forms that support you in staying connected to the higher energies. Through these experiences you can move into a deeper sense of peace, beyond the limitations of language and words to describe, that is a great reward in itself.

Plus much more. I can’t begin to describe how much shift it brings, how much ease of being in the world and bringing your Presence to it. Let me know if you are interested by emailing marharrell[at]hotmail.com

The Self-Exciting course is described at the bottom of the front page.

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William McKeen’s Special Contribution to My New Book, “Hunter Thompson’s Hell’s Angels”

William McKeen, head of the Journalism Department at Boston University, is a Special Contributor to my new book, Hunter S. Thompson’s Hell’s Angels: Writers & Editor, Romance & Trouble in collaboration with Ron Whitehead. He has been so helpful to me and as well is the author of a marvelous reference work, Outlaw Journalist: The Life and Times of Hunter S. Thompson, and many other top-notch works. Every page will hold your interest.  You can read his contribution to  The Hell’s Angels Letters by clicking here.

A fast-paced short 1,000 words by a very good writer himself.

A PREFACE

 

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Norman S. Don & Psychic Olof Jonsson – RIP

Norman S. Don, a neuroscientist and parapsychologist, is in Keep This Quiet! IV. He has just passed away July 10, 2020. Now and then researchers contact me to learn how to reach him. They are actively, currently, undertaking projects about Olof Jonsson. Read on to learn some of the information Norm revealed to me for this site.

The video above, which he gave me to post, shows psychic Olof Jonsson attempting to teach card-guessing feats to Norm Don at his brain-function lab in Chicago – one of numerous video clips they made. It gives only a brief glimpse of the experiments. Olof convinced Don his paranormal abilities were real.  As an unconfirmed side note, I got a phone call a few years ago from Olof’s driver in Las Vegas. She was gathering material for a book and trying to locate Don. One of the stories she told me was that Olof was the model for the child in the film E.T. I haven’t yet found a way to confirm it.

One early evening at the Parapsychological Association Convention in Durham, NC, in 1995, I was sitting at the hotel bar for a beer and this dashing man happened to be sitting beside me. It turned out to be Dr. Norman S. Don, who by serendipity had a lot in common with me. Among other unlikely things, he had actually once gone to Dhyanyogi Madhusudandas for relief in a kundalini awakening. This was highly unexpected, to stumble on such a person at a meeting of scientists at the PA Convention. Norm attributed it to “Shakti,”  or what the yogis call spiritual energy.

Below is an account he wrote and compiled for this site. It is extracted from a manuscript he was preparing, “Condition Three,” about his experiments with the psychic/engineer Olof Jonsson, one of the few who participated in a successful telepathy experiment with astronaut Edgar Mitchell on the moon voyage. “Edgar Mitchell, an astronaut aboard Apollo 14, was the sixth man to walk on the surface of the moon. While on board the spacecraft, he conducted a series of private ESP experiments that had not been approved by NASA. On his return he founded the Noetic Institute of Sciences in northern California.Continue reading about Mitchell here.

Bio: Until his recent retirement Norman S. Don worked as a neuroscientist at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He also did extensive field work in Brazil, studying the brain function of trance mediums, healers, people who take the hallucinogenic mixture ayhuasca, and people claiming UFO abduction. In addition to more mainstream work, he has published some 100 papers and book chapters on parapsychology and brain function. He met the East Indian teacher Meher Baba in 1970, which led him into consciousness studies and writing poetry. Olof Jonsson was a very well known Swedish psychic. Read Olof Jonsson’s bio The information provided on this page was created and/or supplied by Dr. Norman Don. No portion of this page may be reproduced either in whole or part without written permission.

CONDITION THREE

Chapter I

It is about 8 P.M. Sunday evening and we have been working for three hours. The sun is setting through the summer clouds, and on the forty-eighth floor of River Plaza we have a panoramic view of Chicago easing into a July evening. The room we are in would normally be the living room of a two-bedroom, high-rise apartment. Instead, it is filled with laboratory equipment used for scientific experimentation involving brain waves. At one end of a worktable, the only cleared table surface in the room, Olof and I are seated on laboratory chairs. Olof sits at the head of the table and I sit to his left, at a right angle to him. A black velvet cloth covers this end of the table and a twenty-four inch, white boarder is marked on the velvet. The interior of this square is our working space or “performance platform,” in the language of experimental psychology. A video camera is mounted from the ceiling, its focus centered on the square, so as to tape everything that occurs there. Two decks of playing cards are inside the square. They are our tools.

My apprenticeship begins

Olof has just asked me to shuffle one of the decks. These were new decks that I had just purchased and brought with me inside my attaché case. During the seventh shuffle he asks, in his soft Swedish accent: “What card would you like to find?” I pondered a few seconds, then said “ten of clubs.” Olof then said, “Where in the deck is the ten of clubs?” I attempted to let the answer “float into my mind,” as Olof has patiently put it to me countless times. Several numbers drifted in and out of my consciousness; finally, thirty-one stuck. I told him and he asked me to check the thirty-first card. I started at the top of the deck, turning over one card at a time, expecting to see my card at each turn. When I had turned over half the deck without encountering the ten of clubs my tension level mounted. As I turned over the thirty-first card and laid it on the table, I was astounded to see the ten of clubs. Olof said to me: “You seem surprised!” I was, even though many similar things had happened over the past four months, when we started this phase of our work. The man seated to my right is Olof Jonsson.

My background—how I got to where I am

It is now October 1988. I have been attempting without success, for the past six months, to tell the story of what led up to that July 1986 evening, and what has happened since. In many ways, this story is one of failures. There were failures of many projects—to leave me feeling dissatisfied, even though the projects were successful by ordinary standards. And then there were projects that simply didn’t make it. Thus, the path to that July evening was to a large extent a process of elimination of what was not suitable. There was nothing in my background that prepared me for anything but a materialistic worldview, either in my upbringing or my education. The first part of my university education was in the physical sciences, in physical chemistry and physics; I received a Master of Science degree in these subjects from the University of Chicago in 1960. For the next ten years I worked at various jobs, mainly involving computers. I received my Ph.D. in psychology from the Union Institute in 1974.

Parapsychology

I looked into parapsychology and found that the arch critics of parapsychology claimed—and still claim—that there never has been a conclusive, well-designed experiment performed, supporting the existence of psi.  The methods of science are supposed to be capable of impartially deciding such issues, but just as in everyday life, ideas that challenge deeply held convention are usually rejected swiftly. Most confirmed skeptics have never seriously reviewed the experimental literature in parapsychology. If they did, they would find that there are currently several scientific journals in the field. The standards for accepting articles for publication are at least as high as in most scientific journals.  In a review of the field by Professor Robert Rosenthal of Harvard University, who is not a parapsychologist, he concluded that the quality of the research articles in the parapsychology journals is in general superior to those in other fields of science [reference being researched]. Most of the authors of these articles hold academic or research positions at universities or research-oriented organizations. Most of these people have a Ph.D. or a comparable degree. Given all this, and the fact that hundreds of studies have been published reporting significant psi, to claim, as committed skeptics do, that there never has been a study published that was not fatally flawed is certainly prejudiced. At this time most scientific parapsychology is a laboratory science which investigates very small manifestations of psi, using statistics. This is called the “minimalist” approach, that is, investigation of very small psi effects. In contrast to this is the “maximalist” approach, which focuses on very large scale psi effects. At this time, there is very little investigation of large-scale psi phenomena. In fact, there are a number of outstanding parapsychologists today who don’t believe that large-scale psi effects exist. Clearly, large-scale psi does not appear in the laboratory. We must instead look to what are called spontaneous cases, that is, manifestations of psi that happen spontaneously in everyday life. In this book we will focus on such large scale manifestations.

Martin Luther King Assassination

There seemed to be no solution for me within academia. Eventually, I went into the computer consulting business. This was very novel at that time; there were still very few people working with computers in the 1960s. I found the work to be absorbing and well paying; the transition into the business environment was a big change, but one that I eventually was able to adjust to. One afternoon found me in the office of a client in Chicago. It was April 4, 1968, and I was seated at a desk, working. Without warning, I experienced what I can only describe as a force, which hurled me out of the desk chair and onto the floor. My first thought was that I was having a heart attack. I had worked in a cardiology research lab for a while at the university, and knew that if this were a heart attack sizeable enough to throw me to the floor, I should also be experiencing intense pain—and I wasn’t. I next thought that I was too young and healthy for a heart attack to be likely. But in those first few moments I would not have bet much money one way or the other.

After a few minutes I felt reasonably sure that I had not suffered a life-threatening trauma, and I decided to try and understand what was happening to me.  I felt I was in some kind of strange state of consciousness. I decided to see if imagery would help me to understand what was happening. I closed my eyes and looked within. First, I saw a blue-gray light, which looked and felt like death to me. Next, I looked deeper and saw the clear image of a circle of bullets standing on their flat ends, all bathed in that blue-gray death-light. My angle of view of this image was oblique, so that there was the suggestion of a cone or domelike figure.

It suddenly came to me this was a monarch’s crown, and that monarch had just been assassinated. I first thought of the Queen of England, but at this point the imagery was fading and no further clear information or imagery came. I wrote down the time.  I felt so disturbed by what had happened that I called the cardiologist in whose lab I had worked at the university. When I got Dr. Jones on the phone, I told him just the part about being hurled to the floor and the strange state of consciousness, but not the details of it. He thought the whole thing was absurd, but I persisted and he did examine me and ran an EKG the next day. I was very healthy.

Within a few hours the media carried the news of Martin Luther King Jr’s. assassination on a motel balcony in Memphis, Tennessee, by a sniper, at 6:01 p.m. I had written down 6:01 p.m. after my  experience. When I heard the news, it suddenly all made sense. It is difficult to convey the complex of feelings and thoughts I had. I did not question if this were merely a peculiar coincidence, as an affirmed skeptic probably would. The experience and the details were much too rich and specific for that. I interpreted this as a psychic experience.

Although it is usually possible to propose alternative, materialistic-causal scenarios for such spontaneous events, one should consider if such scenarios are even more improbable than the possibility that the event was paranormal. When I heard the news, I was at once relieved that I probably had not had some kind of transient trauma, and I was gripped with the feeling that all hell was going to break lose—and it did. It has been noted that psychic information is most likely to break into consciousness when it bears important, personal meaning. At the time of this event, I was sympathetic to the Civil Rights cause of American Blacks, but I was not involved in any political action or demonstrations, which in the 1960s were very high drama, indeed. What brought the assassination to my doorstep were the riots that followed. I lived in an integrated neighborhood in Chicago which was surrounded by ghetto on three sides and Lake Michigan on the fourth. When the ghettoes erupted in violence after the assassination, I was right in the middle of it. The National Guard had to be called out, and when that failed to contain the rioting, the Army was brought in.

There was widespread violence and the air was filled with smoke from burning buildings. The city was in a state of war for many days; it was not an experience that one easily forgets. The French philosopher and Nobel laureate Henri Bergson (1859 – 1941) suggested that one of the main properties of consciousness is to act as a filter, screening out information that is not locally limited to our senses. Were this not so, he argued, we would be flooded at all times with information from distant places, or about future events, which has little or no survival value to us as individuals. This seems quite reasonable; it is actually an extension of the accepted fact that one of the functions of the brain is to filter out most of the sensory information that is constantly bombarding us.

As you read this you probably are not aware of the large toe on your left foot . . . but now you are. In ordinary perception what passes through this filtering depends upon several factors, which are the determinants of attention. These include the qualities of the sensory variable, such as the intensity of a sound or the brightness of a color. Another factor is stimulus patterning, such as symmetry or textural differences. The novelty or familiarity of the stimulus is another factor, as is motivation. Research in parapsychology has shown that these same factors are involved in psi, but to varying degrees and only under some conditions. Perhaps the filtering involved with psi is opened, however rarely and briefly, by events that are meaningful and important enough to us. But what faculty, then, is so aware of the whole world and can make this judgment of what is important and meaningful to us, and sometimes opens the “filter”?

“Let’s try using the Zener cards,” said Olof. “I will send to you.” I felt excited and apprehensive. Olof had started to try and teach me how he does psychic things. These tests of my abilities required a lot of my energy and usually were not very successful. I got the deck of Zener cards from my briefcase, shuffled them in front of the video camera and handed them to Olof.  He lay them face down on the table. Zener cards were in the past one of the staples of ESP testing. They were used extensively by J. B. Rhine, who was Director of the Parapsychology Laboratory at Duke University from 1935 to 1965. These decks consist of twenty-five cards marked with five geometrical symbols: star, circle, wavy lines, square and cross. Each symbol appears on five cards of the deck.

Hello! Three Years Since You Died in Las Vegas

Dear Olof, It has been three years since you died in Las Vegas and I thought that you might like to hear from me. I know that you are not dead, at least not as most people think of death as THE wipe-out. I really don’t know where you are, in which “plane of consciousness,” or what kind of body you are in. If there is a Las Vegas in the spirit world, I have no doubt that’s where you are now. Probably with several beautiful and available women. Yes, I’m giving you low marks for character—and there’s a lot more that I could say about that—but I’m not really condemning you, just being more direct than I was when you were still with us.

Frankly, I was looking for a more saintly wizard than you turned out to be. But you were by far the best that I found. And you changed my life profoundly. Really. I was twenty-four years old, a confirmed materialist, finishing a master of science degree at the University of Chicago. Later, a large picture of you was in Life Magazine. Astronaut Edgar Mitchell, on the Apollo XIV Mission, landed on the moon and tested you with ESP cards, while you stayed in Chicago and guessed the order of the cards. Before I met you, I never saw these things done successfully, but you could, sometimes in the presence of celebrity stage mentalists. I still clearly remember the respect and deference they had toward you. You also performed successfully on computerized, “double blind” tests in our lab, which trickery couldn’t explain. It took a surprising amount of time for me to really get that you were dematerializing cards and mentally moving them around in the deck. And you even succeeded in teaching me, at least to the self-anointed rank of Junior Assistant Wizard. Which means that I sometimes could dematerialize objects and move them mentally. You have seen me do it and at first you sure were not pleased that another wizard had been created, even a very junior apprentice.

I’ve even been able, occasionally, to demonstrate to my friends what you taught me. But they refuse to believe that it’s not just card tricks. As you know, I don’t know any card tricks. You opened the door for me to your Zen or cards. Of course, Zen aims at the Void, the Nothing and Everything, what westerners call God—but without a face—I would say. You taught me, and helped me experience many of the “planes of consciousness,” the White Light, and what lies on the other side of that light: the Void itself. You were a frequent flyer in these realms, and in fact, your card demonstrations were concretizations of this knowledge, because they drew upon higher consciousness.

However, I think that you focused too much on the concrete and not enough on the consciousness. You drew upon the higher energies but did not merge with them. Instead, you became enchanted with concretizations, halfway between heaven and earth. You certainly did not want to be seen as a spiritual teacher, or even a spiritual person, just the world’s greatest psychic. You were very attached to that, and couldn’t drop it. It’s three years since you left this “plane.”

My life has had its ups and some big downs, but I’m doing OK now. Really. I do miss you. So does Bruce. I hope that you are OK and evolving, wherever you are. Maybe next trip around you will be more emotionally mature, and wiser about love and the need for honesty in friendships. And not squandering the extraordinary gifts you were born with on unimportant things, especially in league with people who intend to squeeze out your last drop of blood and throw you away. I don’t know where that masochistic part of your personality came from, but it had a very strong grip on you. So side by side with your remarkable talents was an injured ego. How remarkable that all that high knowledge and experience did not fix your problems.

Maybe why we are here is not to become wizards or even saints, just to become sane. My definition of sane: living in harmony (your word) with ourselves, nature, and each other. Then, maybe, the key to the universe is spontaneously (again your word) found right in our hand. It’s a beautiful, sunny fall day in northern Illinois, as I write these things from my heart and my memory. You betrayed my trust and you fed my thirst for knowledge. You cracked open the door to the universe for me and changed my life, big time. I was brought into your fantastic crowd of admirers, greedy ghouls, CIA hit men, big-name dictators, and others who defy easy classification. I can tell lots of stories. In closing, thank you thank you. You were the most extraordinary human I ever met. But people did not love you, wizard or no, because you hid yourself. I think that’s where you really flopped. Norm

P.S. I paid the bill for your cremation in LasVegas with my credit card, over the phone from Chicago. It cost $398, but I earned some points with the airline.

Diary 2001

To be successful in wizardry, it must be done spontaneously, in the flow of things: When I cut the deck and it “flows,” not sticks or hesitates—a micro state of satori. Visualizations or strong intentions can also be used to “set up” the desired effect. But then the conscious mind must be quieted or distracted. If not, the procedure will not work, since the information will not have been released into the higher states. This afternoon I demonstrated wizardry 101 to my secretary. I shuffled a 52-card deck, face down. Next I asked her to randomly pick one card out, look at it (and not let me see it), and randomly put it back in the deck. I then shuffled the deck several times, waiting for that sense of ease and perfection. During the third shuffle, a card stuck way out from the deck. I took this to be it. I asked her to take that card and tell me if that was her card. It was the three of hearts. She showed me where she had written down on her pad in shorthand, three of hearts, after she first drew that card. That instant The universe stood still Mind and matter Were one again Perfect harmony

A Few Days Later.

I spent several hours today viewing just part of one videotape of Olof teaching me. I had forgotten so much of what was taped 15 years ago! Some of the material is spectacular. At the moment, I feel very daunted by it. I can’t present the heart of the teaching because I have not developed the ability to consciously and volitionally enter the states of consciousness required. I can set up the visualizations, but without being able to get the conscious mind to stop, I am very limited. What does work for me—sometimes—is to do the operations very fast, or to distract my attention onto something else, after setting up the intention. So I must practice. Maybe that’s still OK. I can report what Olof did, then what I did to try and learn that—the false starts, the failures, and the successes. I would claim absolutely no great qualifications for the task. But I know from my past that I can sometimes do the Olof things. I will try tonight. The other matter is that one does not have to enter and stay in these altered states, just contact them very briefly. Quite something, that some Olof operations require contact with the void, but so rapidly that the experience of the void will not be conscious. (It takes perhaps half a second for a percept to become fully conscious.) Came home about 5:30 PM with my colitis bothering me. Lay down in bed, breathed deeply a few times. Immediately I was in a gray-to-white lighted-space Felt like a deep pool of warm, embracing water. I disappeared, but (I) didn’t think that (I) was asleep, since there still was consciousness. When I looked at the clock, one hour had passed, which surprised me.

Walking Through Walls

Of course, impossible. What illusionists do. How could a physical body pass through a physical barrier? At the quantum level, electrons do tunnel through energetic barriers with ease. You might analogize this to a car in a locked garage spontaneously transported outside. But at the large scale of the everyday world these quantum effects are averaged to the point that they are virtually zero. That’s why Olof —or anyone else—could not walk through a wall. But what if in his wizard costume Olof could walk through walls? From what you have already read, how might that happen? ….

Passing On the Teaching

So, if Olof did walk through walls, how could that happen? First, it would mean that there is something very flawed with the materialist world view of physical forces and particles. The physicists will likely tell you about the impressive edifice of data and theory that they have built. Physicists will admit that physics has yet to solve some major problems, but they expect that eventually these will be conquered. Let’s, for the moment, entertain an opposite view-that consciousness is the primary thing in the universe and everything physical is derivative. This is, of course, the way some Eastern religions look at it. But let’s get back to how Olof described the process, in a way which is very similar to some practices in ancient Chinese Taoist yoga. Close your eyes and take a dozen slow, deep abdominal breaths. That should relax you. Next, visualize an electric fan with shiny, metal blades. Visualize these blades turning clockwise, faster and faster. If you can’t do it, don’t be discouraged. Try it again in a few hours or tomorrow.

Pulling the Story Up Out of the Past: Wheels

Yes, I know about chakras being wheels or wheel-like, but that’s just the energy dynamic at the chakra. Olof’s wheels would circulate up the back and down the front, enclosing the body as a large tire would. This circulation is well-known. I believe that James G. Frazer in The Golden Bough discusses it. So do the Taoist yogis.

But Olof also said that the circulation could be reversed-up the front and down the back. Furthermore, he said that there were many other directions the energy could flow. For example, along diagonals. But the main circulation was around the body, top to bottom. Also, by visualization it could be contained to circulate around a diseased part of the body for healing purposes.

Somewhere in my records are the medical records of Norman Atenhoffer (Sp?), whom Olof apparently cured of lung cancer. Olof worked on him right after Atenhoffer’s physician said that he had two weeks of life left. Here’s what happened according to Atenhoffer(At) and Olof. From 200 pounds, he was reduced by the ravages of the lung cancer to 85 pounds. His wife had heard of Olof and brought At to see him at a small meeting of people interested in the psychic. Now, Olof seldom did any spiritual healing; why, I don’t know. But with At, Olof felt a strong energetic connection, and perhaps there were other factors which Olof did not articulate.

At the meeting, Olof directed At to relax for five minutes in a chair. Olof told me that he visualized At’s energy circulating around his body. Olof then instructed At to sit and relax at 8 PM the next four nights. At told me that after the second healing session, the next night, he had the worst coughing spell of his life. While he was coughing, some kind of black substance was being coughed up. The third night was a repeat of this—violent coughing and bringing up black material. The fourth and fifth nights were similar, but with less coughing. At told me that from that point on his health started to improve. After a few weeks—when he was supposed to be dead—he returned to his physician’s office. I wasn’t informed of what the physician said or what tests were done, except for a bone marrow sample being taken. This was done by hammering a sharp, tube-like instrument into a pelvic bone. Al had several of these done during his illness, and he said that they were excruciatingly painful-so much so that he would cry.

This time, At was lying on the table waiting for the sample to be taken, for what seemed to be a long time. He finally asked the nurse when the sample would be taken. She said, “It has already been taken.” At said that he was astounded by this. Further, that area of his body did not experience pain from other intrusions for three weeks. I spoke with At about three years after this happened. He apparently had a complete remission and was back to full-time work.

I questioned Olof about what happened, and he said that this was done with visualization of the circulating energy. He also said that he had worked on Al more often than the 8 PM sessions.

During my apprenticeship with Olof, I never felt that I was experiencing the circulation, nor did I “see” it. However, once, when we were working with the cards, I saw a distinct fog-like presence surrounding a card. It extended about four inches. It was not circulating. I asked Olof if this was the energy and he said that it was. Here I could go into a discussion of subtle energy etc. Next, I could go into the reversal of the circulation. By circulating in one direction, then reversing it, then reversing it again, etc., you might arrive at the state which Olof called “harmony.” This, according to Olof, was the void. This is the state required to dematerialize physical objects.

Here I could go into discussion of the void from Buddhist sources. Thus, for anything physical in space and time, there is a subtle energy associated with it. Perhaps we can think of this as an energetic pattern, or in some way containing a pattern or form from which the physical object is created. In Olof’s world view, consciousness is primary and material things are derivative. Therefore, if one is in a high enough state of consciousness to influence the subtle energy “shell,” by the process of energy reversals, a balancing occurs, which effectively cancels out the energy matrix associated with and mother to a physical thing. This can also be thought of as the union of opposites, so prominent in alchemy, and explicated in the writings of Carl Jung.

Further, we may entertain the possibility that this is the subtle energy dynamic behind the union. To go on with this model, when the energies are balanced, and thereby effectively canceled, the object will no longer be in space and time. Rather, it will be in the form of energy, and will be located in the void. It will have disappeared. Olof said that eventually such an “object” will reappear in space time, but where, is sometimes unpredictable. Does a wizard or apprentice wizard need to be conscious in the void? No, the time in the void can be very brief, and still be sufficient to affect the object. Olof said that with practice, you can become more conscious in the void state. Think maybe it’s time for more card stuff-back to the practice range, so to speak. I’ll do some card stuff and describe what happens, how I feel, etc.

Many Times Olof Said to Me

Many times Olof said to me: “The body is false.” The first time he said this, I replied, “What do you mean it’s false?” Olof: “I mean that it’s an image made of slowed-down energy.” Norm: Contemporary physics conceives matter to be made of particles and energies and a lot of empty space. So the apparent solidity of things is just due to the way our perception works. At a point like this, rather than continuing an intellectual discussion, Olof would typically steer us back into the experiential, back into the Zen of cards. In his soft, Swedish accent, he might say: “What card you like to see?”

When we were doing sessions under the video camera, I would let the random number function key on my calculator select a number between 1 and 52. Let’s say that this time the number was 23. I had a list of the 52 cars in the deck, each associated with a number between 1 and 52. Let’s say that this time the three of clubs was selected as the target card. Olof: “Where in the deck would you like to see it?”

Again I would run my random number program, which would select a number between 1 and 52. Let’s say that this time 32 was chosen. Therefore, the three of clubs was to be the 32nd from the top of the deck. I next shuffled the deck, several times, and cut it. At no time did Olof handle the deck. This was documented on the video tape. Olof: “Look at the 32nd card.” I would count down from the top until I reached 32. Olof: “Turn it over.” This was always a moment of excitement for me. Let’s say that this time it worked and the three of clubs was 32nd card from the top. Olof: “Conditions are good!” I am somewhat embarrassed to confess that for months I thought of this as just due to the way psi works. That is, not limited by space and time or ordinary causality. So this was Olof’s answer to the body being “false.” At that point in my studies with him, I took his statement to mean that psi can affect our bodies. It wasn’t until Olof started having me cut the deck into four piles that it dawned on me what was happening. And it demolished any materialist beliefs that I still had about the world. In Zen they say, “Every day you begin again.” Olof never said it that poignantly. But it’s true. Until our energies and consciousness are sufficiently elevated, it’s back to first base over and over and over. Like a young bird learning how to fly.

Talking to Myself

Sex and Kundalini. Don’t remember much more about such Olof pronouncements. Came across a statement buried in Meher Baba writings (WHERE???) that Kundalini, as practiced by yogis, will get one only to temporary states of enlightenment. Permanent states, such as Sahaj Samadhi, aren’t gained in that way! How then? I think with higher processes, and definitely by balancing out (which nullifies) one’s karma. This balancing, actually of the mental impressions from the soul’s whole past evolution, these are stored in the mental body. One does not destroy them. Rather, the method is to balance them. There, of course, experiencing the opposites karmic. Rich, poor; ugly, beautiful; dull, smart; etc. Now, many, many years ago, when I was a lad, doing psychotherapy, several times I was able to facilitate in clients the union of opposites. Such as bring rage and nurturing together in imagery. E.g., “let an image come to you of your angry boss.” Say, a lion appears. Now, do this with slow dramatic effect: “feed the lion a steak.” Balancing even at this level does sometimes work. Turning very powerful white light with kriyas. Or even going into the void: no anger, no lion, no steak. “It’s Nothing.” So, OJ saying sex and Kundalini, may well be correct, if you take that to be the body’s kundalini, not a more cosmic energy which some might term Kundalini. But also, Baba wrote about the earth possessing an energy, the same as we have in the “third fold of the body.” I believe that’s a Sufi thing. Bruce is here to fetch me. More later-but you see maybe kundalini is more associated with corporality at “lower levels”—physical bodies, “third fold” of the body—some kind of level of energy body?—and then the earth body itself. So maybe that’s where Kundalini is found, and that might be its limitation, of being “attached” to the lower forms, so that’s were it eventually reverts to. More later. Swami N

Dream at an Enlightenment Intensive

I am going through re-entry to the illusion of everyday life, slowly slipping back into unconsciousness about Who I Am. How to explain what happened to the unitiated and perhaps the skeptical.

Week of September 8, 2002

The following dream came out of working on the question “Who am I?” I was in a baseball uniform—cap, striped shirt and pants, and high stockings. I had just made a home run and was crossing home plate. I looked up into the spectator stands along third base line and was surprised that they were empty. The stadium looked the way they did, I think, maybe 75 years ago. Large with lots of wood, painted dark green. Next, I looked at the seats behind center field and along the first base line. No spectators. I was shocked. Next, I looked out onto the playing field and there was no team out there!! Yet, I was sure that I had just made a home run.

Now the cherry on top of the dessert: I looked down in the vicinity of home plate, expecting to see balls and bats on the ground. No balls and bats. I’ll just say that I have no interest in baseball and haven’t played it for over 50 years. So, I am the only player and I myself play the whole game, without even bat and ball, to an empty world.

There is normally a split between me and what I think or sense. So I can ask a question, Who Am I, and the question is separate from me, that is, a mental object. It hangs out there like a cloud. My breakthrough was the collapse of this duality, this self and otherness. Then there is certainty because my consciousness now knows that it can split off into parts, but it is still all my consciousness. It’s all me; the questioner and the question. There is a feeling of complete certainty and that the game has ended. When some people get it, they burst into gales of laughter, realizing that they have been chasing their own tail. You now realize that your consciousness can set up this self-other game.

Now, this didn’t happen, but I know that the next step on this path is the experience that others are me; that is, they are split-offs which my consciousness has created. And I am the only One; there is only one consciousness. Just like my awake dream about baseball. For this step to occur, the sense of individual self, the ego, must dissolve, at least while the experience lasts. This state of consciousness becomes permanent only in rare “cases.”

Olof. If everything is Me, and I am consciousness, then I can will anything to happen—like the home run in the baseball game—since everything is within My consciousness.

Olof card yoga. There, the entry and exit to the unity state is so brief, the brain is not stimulated long enough to form a conscious percept or thought. “Ja, where in the deck would you like to see the three of clubs?” … In the beginning was the word.

Norman S. Don, Ph. D., worked as a neuroscientist at the University of Illinois at Chicago and has done extensive field work in Brazil, studying the brain function of trance mediums, healers, people who take the hallucinogenic mixture, ayhuasca, and people claiming UFO abduction. In addition to more mainstream work, he has published some 100 papers and book chapters on parapsychology and brain function. He met the East Indian teacher Meher Baba in 1970, which led him into consciousness studies and writing poetry. Olof Jonsson was a very well known Swedish psychic. Read Olof Jonsson’s bio

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Hunter-Gatherers Podcast

The Hunter-Gatherers podcasts tell stories by friends of Hunter Thompson, memories from across the spectrum, across time. Find mine here. Or look for these podcasts on Spotify and other places where you go for your favorite podcasts. Even I, who have followed the books on Hunter, was surprised by a lot of the contributors. They tell their stories in a relaxed well, with superb interviewing. Just fun to listen to. Check them out.

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About Me

Having had my own spiritual initiations, beginning in 1985 at the Jung Institute in Zurich, which are recounted in the latest volume in the Keep This Quiet! series: Initiations, I like working with people to integrate the shift and jolts that often accompany awakening to your deeper identity.  Another thing I like is to mentor people wanting to maximize their potential. I additionally offer services to “read” your energy by tracking its path—its divergences, obstacles, blocks, and potential. My focus is on acceptance and love, a deep sense of reality, humor, diversity, and breakthroughs—cutting out the excuses and detours to get to where the road is open and even sometimes simple.
Light Body Background
I’ve studied the light body through Sanaya Roman and Duane Packer since 1992 – in Belgium, Ibiza, and the U.S. In 1997, I completed the teacher requirements, and upon my return from Belgium to Raleigh in 2001 began teaching a large variety of courses in the Orin/DaBen curriculum.
Other Hats
I wear various hats that all revolve around creativity. Besides working in the light body, I have been for decades a freelance editor and a cloud photographer. Some of my most wonderful memories are as a three-time Fellow of MacDowell Colony for artists in a cabin in New Hampshire. There, artists of all stripes have their own private cabin in the woods to work in, being brought a lunch basket in the middle of the day and congregating in the evening for a meal together. It’s wonderful. In my thirties I switched from novelist to consciousness-research author, and the result is ten books in the Love in Transition/Space Encounters series (published in Romania while I lived in Belgium). Much earlier at Random House, I copy edited Hunter Thompson’s first book, Hell’s  Angels. Hunter lavishly acknowledged me in Gonzo Letters 2. Letters from Hunter from that time gave me the right tuning fork for my 2011-13 Keep This Quiet! I-III memoir series (Saeculum University Press); he is highly prominent in the first two volumes. As a result, I was lucky enough to give a presentation at the 2014 Gonzo Fest in Louisville, KY.
In the wisdom  traditions, I had shaktipat into a Hindu lineage, of Lord Ram in the early 1990s, through the sat guru Dhyanyogi-ji, a Kundalini Maha Yoga teacher. I’m interested in indigenous teachings and was a co-founder—in the early 90s—of Kayumari, a spiritual community in California, which helped open the door to the Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers. Academically, I graduated with a BA in history (Honors & Distinction) from Duke and an MA in contemporary Brit and American literature from Columbia University. After leaving the Jung Institute Zurich, I’ve continuously studied and experimented in energy and consciousness.
Top Photo:©Jinn Bug
Alternatively:Margaret Harrell in Pittsboro
I have been called “complicated” and “ornery,” “angelic” and “intimidating.”At different times I can identify with them all. My light body teacher in Belgium, Roland Verschaeve, used to say, “Margaret, you don’t have to do anything but show up” (at a workshop). I’ve relished it when someone said that in my classes people leave their egos at the door. I guess that about sums it up. Email me at marharrell[a]nc.rr.com. Below are three testimonials about my light body courses:
I am writing to try to articulate what the Light Body course has done for me. Mainly I am so peaceful inside and I can take the stress of life with much greater ease…Since starting the course I have also been able to take on the world without fear. In fact my income doubled because I took on managing a company that I had been working in for 6 years. You see, I had a very easy, low-paying position that I THOUGHT was the only thing I could handle since I had believed that I was incapable of more. This course has almost made me fearless! I have travels all over the country alone…again before this course I would NEVER fly alone…
On a moment to moment basis I just can let things go…I deal with the issue at hand and then…bam…I lose the emotion and I am back to peace again. Yes, I still have the HABIT of reacting…but it is empty now…like a shadow that fades. I feel wonderful…I am able to draw on the course all thru the day for peace. I really know that I have unlimited potential!!! – Denise Carey, author of A Little Book of Extraordinary Love by an Ordinary Person: 12 Steps to Lead Us All into a More Loving World
Margaret’s Harmonic Melody in voice . . . in presence . . . in word . . . takes you up an octave—Teres Larocca
Witty, gentle and wise, Margaret Harrell guides us to greater awareness and self-knowledge. I recommend her to anyone who, like myself, wants to explore the frontiers of their own inner worlds. North Carolina is lucky to have her—Edward Lee Hester, Founder of the Clan of the Earth Keepers
From Day One to Now of knowing Margaret, she has been only and always purposeful with her life’s work, and aligned integrally with that Work in its myriad forms out in the world. She has a brilliance of light in the mind—and heart—that is a constant in the universe. Thank you, Margaret – Ani Lea, Soul Fusion founder
Publications Where I Can Be Found:
UPDATE – August 2016: If you want a full, narratively told, professional account, click here for my new Marquis Who’s Who Legacy Bio. For a long time, I have been in Marquis Who’s Who in the World, in America, and in American Art. Additionally, in other art books, such as: One Hundred Fine Art Photographers and Seventy-Five Fine Art Photographers (German/English). In November 2016 I became a Marquis Who’s Who Lifetime Achievement Award inductee. I am also officially a Marquis Who’s Who Expert. Also, in 2016, my photography has been exhibited in Florence, Italy, and Vienna, Austria.
Podcast interviews:
The latest: The Hunter-Gatherer Podcasts, 2020, is a short, fun interview; also, Ayrial Talk Time, Victoria Lynn Weston interviews me “On the Value of Meditation.” Click here to listen.
“Using Dreams to Clear Clutter”: Julie  Coraccio (“Reawaken Your Brilliance”). Click here to listen.

See the Media page for more.

Margaret 2014
Margaret 2014

 

 

And to round out the picture, up close and personal, here’s the latest in ballet photos at North Carolina Dance Institute.

In class at North Carolina Dance Institute, 2015
In class at North Carolina Dance Institute, 2015
Margaret Harrell, NCDI 2015
Margaret Harrell, NCDI 2015

 

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“Awakening Gaia” Book Launch – Dr. Fred Grover Jr.

This is the second book by Dr. Fred Grover Jr. – just published. I was thrilled to edit it, as I did the first book. From the publisher:

Fred takes you on a journey of planetary shamanism as he taps into higher-dimensional insights and flows with magical synchronicities to place Lemurian crystals and sacred geometric forms around the world. His ultimate goal is to counter the darkness in our world by reactivating, reconnecting and radiating ancient healing energies and grids of the Incas, Mayas, Native Americans, Polynesians and more. He invites you to experience this growing field of energy, and encourages everyone to spread their own light and love to Gaia and its inhabitants, promoting a sustainable, healthy future for all.

This is Fred’s website, where you can read about his first book, Spiritual Genomics:

Dr. Fred Grover – Spiritual Genomics

After several years of work, Dr. Grover’s book of holistic medicine is finally finished, published, and selling well. It’s Spiritual Genomics: A physician’s deep dive beyond modern medicine, discovering unique keys to optimizing DNA health, longevity, and happiness!

Dr. Grover is known in Denver for his “mind spa,” which represents his own bridge-making with the world of traditional medicine, including through his shamanic experiences. Click here and scroll down to the video clips to see his medical practice at work. He calls himself something of a “renegade” in the primary care and anti-aging field, thinking out of the box, embracing mindfulness. In Spiritual Genomics, he shares some of his wide travels, as well as the latest research and breakthroughs in medicine, including even plant medicine. I enjoyed this book tremendously while watching it come into form, being thrilled to do the editing work this past three years. Below he graciously expresses thanks:

So much gratitude goes out to my editor, Margaret A. Harrell, who helped me maintain momentum and provided amazing editorial assistance throughout this long journey.

The book is so multifaceted that any excerpt is extremely limited. But I’ll give just a couple of paragraphs – that are sidelights to the main focus of how lifestyle expresses our genome: how it “turns on” and “turns off” genes:

Lukla Airstrip Nepal

On a volunteer medical trip to Nepal in 2000, I inaugurated the venture with a climb to the top of Mount Kala Patthar. My father and a few others from our team joined in. On a fall morning we made the dangerous flight from Kathmandu, landing nearly 9,500 feet above sea level on the very short runway at Lukla dubbed “the most dangerous airport in the world.” Sir Edmund Hillary, the first to summit Everest, had this small strip built for a supplies shipment prior to summiting Everest with his Sherpa guide, Tenzing Norgay, in 1953. With the runway just under five hundred yards long, carved into the side of a mountain, a small miscalculation can mean smacking into the cliff at the end of the runway. The damaged planes off the side of the runway attest to this!

After a white-knuckled landing and some deep breaths we hired two hardy, elite Sherpas—Pemba and Perba—to assist in carrying our packs and guiding us to the summit. The Sherpas are ethnic Tibetans, many of whom migrated to Nepal when the Chinese took over Tibet in 1950. Our goal was to escape fast-approaching pressures and get a close-up, panoramic view of Everest, the mountain with the highest altitude in the world (29,035 feet above sea level), prior to setting up our large health camp in north-central Nepal in the dusty village of Barabise.

The Mount Kala Patthar trek is a sixty-miles round trip with frequent ups and downs in elevation, wild suspension-bridge crossings, and—to avoid being knocked off the trail—special attention given to passing yaks, goats, and large-load-carrying Sherpas. The summit, at 18,514 feet, has the best panoramic views of Everest, the nearby peaks, Khumbu Glacier, and the base camp below, reached via a safer, easier route. Did I contemplate climbing Everest? Yes, but after seeing the oversized egos of folks that had climbed it and trashed it, I decided I didn’t want to become one of them. Besides, why spend over forty grand to have a 10 percent chance of dying from the Khumbu Glacier falling on me, or the numerous other potential risks such as losing brain cells from hypoxia. I need those to take me to ninety, at least!

 

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Classes in the Luminous Body – opportunity to sign up

 

Travel into Realms of Light
Receive DaBen’s Individual Transmissions and
Gifts of Light from Luminous Beings for

Evolving into Your Luminous Body – orindaben.com

 

NEW OFFERING.

I have been offered the amazing possibility of teaching “Discovering  Your Luminous Body” and began the first class in November. Afterwards, around February, dtb, I start a new class to again introduce the Luminous Body, a potential part of your energy field that lifts everything into more light, more joy, more ease and clarity. For this second class if you are interested, please contact me. Prerequisite: Awakening Your Light Body.

It’s possible to take this either in a live class or through Skype. You will need to buy the LuminEssence downloads (guided journeys and talks) created by Duane Packer and DaBen. Total cost for that is  discounted to $200. To work with the new consciousness and the journeys and talks, there will be a class with me once a month. Again, I stress that I am incredibly honored to be allowed to teach this course. The cost for the monthly 3-hour class with me is $50 – $100 a class, depending on number of people taking. Total time: 4 – 6 months.

The Luminous Body, once you contact it and begin to assimilate it, brings great peace and high levels of consciousness into your life, sudden sparkle, suddemn moments of being lifted into divine energies.

From the orindaben.com website:

The luminous body is an expansion beyond the light body. Expanding to this level of light brings you insights into the very nature of who you are on the earth plane. As you evolve into your luminous body you can operate from a level of consciousness that allows you to more easily change your life and consciousness. You reorient your consciousness to a higher light and reach a high point above earth plane energies where you are no longer held back by mass consciousness ideas and thought forms. As your consciousness expands you can continually upgrade and improve your circumstances, make the needed changes in your relationships to bring greater peace and harmony, and create shifts in your health, body, and physical well-being.

There is no end to the levels of consciousness you can reach and the experiences you can have. All expansions of consciousness into more light change your perceptions, insights, understandings, and the way you live your life. With each shift into higher consciousness you are able to make choices and decisions, and to live a life that feels more fulfilling and rewarding.

DaBen, your guide, and many luminous beings
will assist you in evolving into your luminous body.

 

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