THUNDERBIRD SITE LIST: Giant Birds and Other Flying Creatures In Fact and Legend


Giant Birds and Other Flying Creatures In Fact and Legend


Why all the fuss about giant flying creatures, giant birds, and giant feathers, and all somehow and in someway related back to the Wanderling?

According to comments over the years by his uncle, the Wanderling's fascination regarding all aspects of giant flying creatures, and thus then his destiny, went back to an incident that involved the fly over of a giant airborne object that the Wanderling witnessed as a very, very young boy. The object, of an unknown nature and an unknown origin, was seen by literally thousands of people along the coast of California barely three months into World War II. Eventually to be called the Battle of Los Angeles, the incident is mostly forgotten now. However, during the early morning hours of February 25, 1942 the whole city and surrounding communities were in an uproar as thousands of rounds of anti-aircraft shells were expended in an attempt to pull down whatever it was in the sky that night. The slow moving object, said to be as big or bigger than a Zeppelin, was caught in the glare of the searchlights from Santa Monica to Long Beach and seemed impervious to the the constant barrarge of shells. It eventually disappeared out over the Pacific after cruising along the coast and cutting inland for a while. The huge object was never clearly explained and was basically hushed up without response from the authorities.


(please click)

Four hundered miles north in Reno, Nevada, in an article recounting the L.A. event from reporters on the scene and witnesses that contacted friends or relatives in Reno, the major local newspaper, the Reno Evening Gazette, dated February 26, 1942, presented the following:

"Still others who watched the spectacle, if it can be called that, sighted no planes in the glare of the army's searchlights. A number, however, reported seeing 'something that looked like a giant butterfly.'"

On the third page of my paper ZEN ENLIGHTENMENT: The Path Unfolds, relating living with my artist Uncle some years following my mother's death, I write that it was under his auspices at age ten, that I first heard of Leonardo Da Vinci. Actually, more clearly, what happened was that the moment my Uncle first showed me pictures of Da Vinci's flying machines I recognized them from my past as a preschool three or four-year old, I just didn't know (or remember) who Leonardo was or how the drawings related to him.(see) Later I tell about seeing the 1947 Johnny Weissmuller Tarzan movie titled Tarzan and the Huntress wherein Tarzan's son Boy builds a glider-type plane capable of flying while carrying him. Then before Boy has a chance to test it, their chimp Cheetah, apparently seeing the glider's potential, steals it. Hanging on for dear life Cheetah jumps off some rocks covering quite some distance through the air. Afterwards I had to build one. My Uncle drew a life size drawing of one of the crafts on the floor of the studio and from there, together, we built an actual machine capable of flying. I go on to say I was not sure what my Uncle's exact plan for the machine was, but one day without his knowledge a friend of mine and I hauled it out of the studio and up to the top of the second story apartments across the compound, and hanging on for dear life, launched it.

Initially the flight played out fairly well, picking up wind under the wings and maintaining the same two-story height advantage for some distance. Halfway across busy Arlington Street though, the craft began slowing and losing forward momentum. It began dropping altitude rapidly, eventually crashing into the porch and partway through the front windows of the house across the way. Other than a few bruises and a wrecked machine, nothing was broken, although as it turned out, my dad wasn't nearly as proud of me as intended. I never forgot the thrill of that flight and carried that thrill and Leonardo's dreams into my adulthood.

The idea of manned-flight didn't end for me the day I crashed glider into the neighbor's house across the street. Matter of fact, as a grown man, after hearing of a powerful 'devil wind' that blows downslope in the High Sierras given the name 'Washoe Zephyr' by Mark Twain and others, and wherein the wind was able to lift a mule off of Mount Davidson up and behind Virginia City, Nevada and carry it 5 miles across the valley setting it down unhurt, I had to see it. My seeing it ended in a second attempt at manned-flight. See:


The whole Da Vinci and flying thing was a huge metaphor for things to come, of which I get into somewhat more throughly in Codex Atlanticus. As it was, my Mentor, either before or after his stay at the ashrama of Sri Ramana Maharshi, and I believe it was before --- even though it is not mentioned by William Somerset Maugham in his book --- traveled to Bijapur to meet with another Indian holy man, Siddharameshwar Maharaj. The Maharaj taught that the only way one can reach Final Reality, that is, Enlightenment, is through what he called Vihangam Marg, the bird's way. For me, at the time, of course, I knew nothing of such things. I only know who the holy man is now because I was able to put together bits and pieces of information such as time and place with such clues as "the bird's way." The holy man had related to my Mentor that only by hearing and practising from the teachings of the Master and thinking over it, just like the bird flies from one tree to another, can one attain Awakening very fast. This is the shortest way to achieve the Final Reality. In that initially I had made little or no progress toward Enlightenment my mentor told me of Siddharameshwer's method.

Where Is It Now, What Happened To It?




Leonardo Da Vinci's flying machine from the 1500s

DA VINCI: Did He Fly?


(please click)


(please click)




"Lavish mansions stood prominently along West Adams Boulevard and nearby Berkeley Square housing the affluent. They were symbols of stateliness and elegance, designed by the best architects of Europe and the US."

Berkeley Square was an exclusive gated neighborhood located in Los Angeles, California, just east of Arlington Street between West 21st and West 24th, bordered on the west by South Gramercy Place. The neighborhood is now gone and covered by the 10 FWY, but from 1920 through to the early mid-1950s was full of dozens of large and expensive mansions.

SEE: BERKELEY SQUARE: Historic Los Angeles