"My uncle was what I call a biosearcher, ending up having more than a half dozen plant species named after him following years of trekking, searching, and discovering previously unknown and unnamed plants all over mostly remote and hidden areas and sections of the desert southwest.

"Early on in those explorations he met Louis L'Amour wandering alone across the desert, then only a young teenage boy just starting out on his ventures, ventures that would ultimately find their way into over 100 books on the west --- with my uncle showing up in at least one and consulting on two."


My uncle was well accepted by most spiritual members of the indigenous people of the desert southwest he interacted with as a person at one with the Earth. He was married to a Native American of the Little Shell Plains Ojibwe who was a fourth level Midewiwin medicine woman that was held in awe by most that came within her presence. He himself moved with an almost cloak-like and uncanny nearly invisible ability, passing among people and places without disturbing the environment. Some say he was a Cloud Shaman and it may very well be the case. However, for the most part, he felt it was an impropriety to usurp for ones own gain or any other reason the traditional spiritual realms of others. Plain speaking, from a very young age I was, by example, both shown and taught by my father and uncle two very basic concepts: "When walking in the woods, never leave tracks," and "when you depart from a campground, always leave it better than you found it." Both concepts, although worded specifically in context, were meant to be expanded to the world and ones life as a whole, the philosophy meshing perfectly in my later teen years when I began study practice of Zen under the auspices of my spiritual guide and Mentor.

While it is true my uncle had to overcome seemingly unsurmountable traditional and cultural roadblocks to be viewed as "one with the Earth" in the eyes of the indigenous people of the desert southwest he interacted with, it did not just happen overnight. The following two paragraphs are from the source so cited and offers perhaps the best insight and clarifications into how it came about:

Just out of high school and long before I was born or ever thought of my uncle-to-be began studying art at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, the College of Fine Arts at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and the Art Student's League in New York City. A year or two before the start of the Great Depression and barely into his 20s he decided to follow an important and well established artist he met and studied under named John Sloan to New Mexico. Sloan traveled to New Mexico each year for a few months to paint and relax. On their second or third trip, when Sloan returned to New York, my uncle stayed, having fallen in love with Santa Fe, the culture and the desert southwest. My uncle, especially before the advent of the Depression era Works Project Administration arts program, better known as the WPA, was, if not more so, still a struggling artist and to stretch his limited funds and maintain his health he began fishing, hunting rabbits, and looking into the potential possibility of edible and medicinal plants indigenous to the desert. In doing so he was soon coming in contact with Native Americans. At first they found the white man foraging in the wilderness one day and painting pictures the next day a bit strange and kept their distance, but after awhile they discovered he was neither there to destroy the environment nor to exploit them. A few Indians, and then soon more and more, began to assist him, and in return he helped them with marketing their wares and making their art more commercially viable. He began looking into local plants, soils and rocks to enhance pigments and dyes. Overcoming many deep rooted apprehensions and suspicions he soon became accepted as one with the Earth and eventually many secrets and rituals that would otherwise not have been revealed were shared with him without concern.

Back then borders were just lines on paper, if that. As it was, most people didn't even have the paper. Arizona didn't exist as a state until only a few years before. In the desert wilderness traveling from New Mexico into Mexico into Arizona meant nothing. Tribal units pretty much kept to their traditional lands that basically just ran from their central operating core until they faded out with no specifically designated border. Although peoples of one group might interact with peoples of other groups they kept their secrets to themselves. My uncle went between tribal areas and cultures up and down and across the desert interacting and learning different ways and methods of either doing the samething or not doing the samething, giving him a much broader base of understanding. What might be poison to one group another found away around and a use. Where medicinal plants, datura or peyote might be ignored by one group, one, the other, or all might be embraced by another group or clan. Learning and respecting local and traditional curing methods and rituals, over time what my uncle did was refine and synthesize, strengthening here, eliminating there.

Castaneda's 1960s Paper On Datura

During those years he spent most of his time traveling and exploring in and around the desert southwest, operating mostly out of the Santa Fe, Taos, New Mexico area interacting mostly with the indigenous population or performing the role as an unofficial liaison between the two. During that same period, traveling in the desert he did have a meeting of some significance that involved someone of non Native American heritage --- the soon to be one day eventual author of over 100 cowboy and western books Louis L'Amour. L'Amour, while hitchhiking across New Mexico as a young man decided to take what he thought would be a good shortcut through the desert. It didn't quite turn out that way. He was dirty, thirsty, hungry and lost when my uncle and a band of Indian friends stumbled across him. As for me, except as a toddler, it was many years later before my uncle showed up in Southern California to interact with me, first on my grandmother's bidding, then my stepmother's, my Stepmother thinking he would be the best person for the job in overseeing me. He took a liking to me right away, however, I don't feel he was too excessively concerned with me one way or the other to start with. That is, until I came back from a trip to Catalina Island sort of rattled and he got out of me what happened. After hearing my story, which I sum up in THE MEETING: An Untold Story of Sri Ramana, right away he started figuring out ways to get back to the desert and take me with him. He told me there were people and places all over the desert, secret and sacred places that had people that would identify with my experience and me.

As it turns out there are many, many known to "a select few" but "undiscovered" sites and sacred sites scattered throughout the desert southwest and elsewhere, especially so the very controversial albeit highly unlikely Buddha Cave said to be high in the canyon walls of the Grand Canyon as documented on the WPA page previously cited. When I personally visited the Pendejo Cave and the Sun Dagger site at Fajada Butte with my uncle, both were known to a select few, just not to the scientific world or general public. Even more secret and more sacred are the still undisclosed and undiscovered solstice-equinox caves I visited with my uncle as described in Julian Osorio. For some reason not known to me, my uncle seemed to have carte blanche when it came to knowledge and access to spiritual people and places. In striking contrast, Carlos Castaneda, as an up and coming anthropology student doing field work while attending UCLA and afterwards, wrote about how difficult it was as an "outsider" to breech the boundries of acceptance. In his book The Active Side of Infinity Castaneda writes that "he met with an extremely seasoned anthropologist who had written and published a great deal on both the Yaqui Indians of Arizona and those of Sonora, Mexico." He told Castaneda "that the Indian societies of the Southwest were extremely isolationist, and that foreigners were distrusted, even abhorred, by those Indians." Another colleague, speaking of medicinal plants and their use just as Castaneda began his search, but sometime before the use of Sacred Datura that he speaks of in his first two books, told him, "if there still were any traditional curing practices, the Indians would not divulge them to a stranger." (source) Such, it seems, was not the case when it came to my uncle.

Because of being with my uncle I was accepted without question by the Native American spiritual elder at the Sun Dagger site, but I was questioned without words whether I was worthy or not when I traveled with my uncle to the Pendejo site. After my uncle's wife told the elder of my experience with the vultures, which were eventually to become my Totem Animal because of the incident with them, he looked deeply into my eyes and apparently liked whatever he saw. Many years later an almost duplicate episode would occur in the presence of the Jamaican man of spells called an Obeah.

As to the two exposed sacred sites, I never said a word about either until long after they were revealed...and since they have been revealed look what has happened, especially to the Sun Dagger site. It is closed off and not even accessible anymore. So many people treked up there it started to fall apart, yet up until it was "discovered" it had stayed safely intact and working for over 700 years. If you recall, when my uncle, the tribal elder, and I accessed the butte, I was NOT allowed to go to the actual physical location of the Dagger with them. (see)

My uncle had taken me to see the much more accessible and less fragial, ground level Supernova Petrograph at Chaco Canyon during our trip to the Sun Dagger site, explaining to me that the image depicted the explosion of a star in the year 1054 AD which since that explosion has created the Crab Nebula. Some years later my uncle caught wind there was a similar depiction rendered in the remote cave paintings in Mexico on the Baja peninsula. Knowing the supernova had been recorded in China and other ancient cultures, he went to see it. My uncle visited the Baja cave paintings well before 1962 and, although years before he had met the then very young yet-to-be professor when he was traveling in Mexico as a teenager, Clement Meighan, he never met him grown up and as a professor. However, he was quite pleased with what Meighan, the UCLA archaeologist that introduced Castaneda to things Shaman, had reported about the condition of the prehistoric paintings following his visit to the site in 1962:

"It is noteworthy that, with one exception, the sites visited showed
no vandalism, pothunting, or marking of the paintings with initials."

It was my uncle that inspired me to build a flying machine crafted after a Da Vinci design. However, it was my own idea to drag it up to the top of the two story building across the street and launch it in an attempt to fly, eventually crashing into the porch and partway through the front windows of the house across the way. As for the Crab Nebula, I had seen it through a reflecting telescope he and I had built ourselves from a kit we bought through mail order, with me actually having to grind and polish the mirror as part of the construction process.

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After a quick heads up from my uncle's friend, the famed meteorite hunter Dr. Lincoln La Paz, almost exactly one year to the day following my Catalina experience, we went to the suspected crash site related to the Roswell UFO, walking much of the then nearly fresh debris field, my uncle wanting to see if there was any truth behind the so called Hieroglyphic Writing reported on some of the metal scraps.

Quite by coincidence we just happened to be in the same general area on a road trip so I could learn first hand about The Long Walk endured by the Navajos and Apaches as well as visit the gravesite of Billy the Kid, located two near Fort Sumner, New Mexico after an excursion into the Arizona Strip. We had been searching for fossils related to the teratorn, a giant bird with over a twenty-foot wingspan thought to be the inspiration of Native American Thunderbird legends. Before La Paz caught up with us we had been cutting across the desert after having holed up for some minor exploration at the Elden Pueblo where prehistoric Native Americans had buried an extremely rare type meteorite, thought possibly to have come from the surface of Mars or the far side of the Moon, in a ritual fashion as well as visiting the Meteor Crater. At the same time those same travels took us through Williams, Arizona for the two of us to pay homage to the dead and injured in the wreck of the Santa Fe Chief that I myself survived uninjured three years before.(see)

Following our arrival in Roswell my uncle talked to a number of people in and around the local area, both men and women, none of who I remember specifically and none who were, except for possibly one, military types. He did talk to a man who my uncle said was an archaeologist. I don't recall anything about him except at the time I wasn't sure what an archaeologist was. However, in retrospect, as things have unfolded since then, I believe he was most likely W. Curry Holden, although I must admit the possibility exists that it might have been the somewhat more unorthodox William Lawrence Campbell. Campbell, known throughout the desert southwest as Cactus Jack, was thought by many to be not much more than a pothunter rather than any sort of accomplished archaeologist, or at least that was the case in his early years. My uncle and the archaeologist, as part of a team formed by La Paz --- with me tagging along --- visited several remote sites apparently related to the Roswell Incident. Other than a long, narrow stream of glass-like fused sand that could have been anything, but somehow seemed to have some significance to everybody on the team except me, I never saw anything that seemed saucer related such as gouged out earth, crash skid marks, or LARGE pieces of debris. Nor did we ever get to see anything that resembled hieroglyphics, at least I didn't.

In the summer of 1952 the relationship with my uncle came to an abrupt end. My dad and stepmother had been on an extended trip to Mexico and South America for a couple of years and during that two-year period their marriage deteriorated to such a point it ended. Although I was no longer living with my uncle we had been traveling on the east coast that summer with a planned trip to France when my father somehow contacted my uncle. He said he wanted me to go to California immediately in order to register for a new school in the fall. I was also informed that I would no longer be staying with the foster family I had been living with, but instead, living with my grandmother.

Not finishing the summer with my uncle was a huge disappointment. Unknowingly, our last summer together had been set into motion by my soon to be no longer stepmother before she and my dad left for South America. For my 11th birthday my stepmother, who I loved dearly, had arranged for me to meet one of my then favorite childhood heroes, the cowboy-western movie star, Roy Rogers. Prior to the death of my grandfather, my grandmother and grandfather lived in the small California mountain community of Big Bear Lake. The two knew Andy Devine, legendary movie sidekick, who owned a sort of locals tavern on the road from Big Bear Village to Big Bear City. Through that connection my stepmother put together the plan for me to meet Rogers. My uncle thought the whole thing somewhat frivolous, so he came up with a much bigger plan, which took a couple of years to put into place. His intention was for me to meet the smartest man in the world, the greatest artist in America, then the greatest artist in the world. In those days the three were, at least as far a my uncle was concerned, none other than Albert Einstein, Jackson Pollock, and Pablo Picasso. My uncle knew the first two himself so he was able to set those meetings somewhat easily. Jackson Pollock coming down from his studio on Long Island to the city after a one man show in Paris and the finishing of his last action painting ever. Albert Einstein along some lake one afternoon while we watched a rowing team practice. The meeting with Picasso never happened. My dad ending the trip before we got the chance to go to Europe. As the door closed between my uncle and myself and our adventures together ended a new door opened. First, just as I started high school I met the person I call my Merchant Marine Friend then two years later I met my mentor in things spiritual. He inturn introduced me to Zen. In the beginning I did study-practice under his auspices, then under the venerated Japanese Zen master Yaustani Hakuun Roshi (without much success it should be added). After that I spent months and months half a world away nearly on the roof of the world doing hard time in a Zen monastery followed several years later by additional study-practice under the little known and mysterious American Zen master Alfred Pulyan.


The meeting with my mentor was not, however, my first experience leading toward things concerning the Absolute. Between the the time of the incident on the island of Catalina and the meeting with my mentor, while still not yet in my teen years, my uncle took me high into the mountains of the Sierras to meet a man of great spiritual Attainment by the name of Franklin Merrell-Wolff, an introduction that ended with a startling and uncanny result. See also:


It should be noted that Adam Osborne, who, as a young boy grew up at the Ramana ashram and the son of one of the foremost Ramana biographers Arthur Osborne, played a prominent role in the Last American Darshan as linked above.

82 7/8" x 15' 11 5/8" by Jackson Pollock


Sixteen to eighteen years passed with my uncle and I not seeing each other for no other particular reason than I had moved on to study-practice under my mentor coupled with my father's early insistence, for whatever reason, that we stay apart. Then, late in the year 1968, my uncle called for only the second time in his life, telling me he wanted to meet me in Kingman, Arizona --- Kingman being approximately halfway between where I lived in California and my uncle's abode near the Sangre de Christo mountains of New Mexico.(see) After talking for nearly a half a day, just as we were parting he gave me a small package to deliver in person to a man in Laguna Beach, California --- and told me whatever I did, NOT give it to anybody else under any circumstances. When I arrived in Laguna Beach I went to an establishment on Pacific Coast Highway called Mystic Arts World as directed by my uncle. There someone took me to the man who was sequestered in a remote cave hidden in the hills above Laguna Canyon Road. The man, Dr. Timothy Leary. The contents of the box not known.(see)

A number of people have been influential interacting on a personal level in my life. They have ranged from highly exalted spiritual personages such as the Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi to unknown to anybody but me only fleeting moments of "ships passing in the night" type people. However, the two major standouts, a good part because of the length of time they were influential during my growing up formative years was my uncle and the oft mentioned person in my works I call my Mentor, or as I refer to him sometimes, the man next door.

Although the two had mutual acquaintances as I discovered as my life moved on, the two never met, with one picking up as the other left and vice versa. A similar overall philosophy did, however, blanket them both at a higher level of which then filtered down through to me. Both, at a different level though, could not been further apart, in the end though, eventually blending together only through me.

I grew up during World War II with my early childhood, as it did so for millions of others, impacting my life in a myriad of ways. My uncle and mentor were impacted by war as well, but the two could not have been further apart. My mentor served in World War I, flying for the British before the U.S. entered the war, after crossing into Canada just out of high school and not being totally truthful about his age.(see) My uncle was at the upper limits of age for the draft during World War II and never served, being more or less a conscientious objector. Interestingly enough, as different as they were when it came to war both my uncle and mentor had been shot because of the ravages of war. My mentor was wounded twice. Once from tangling with a Zeppelin, the other a bullet wound caused from an air-to-air dog fight. My uncle, in 1943, a civilian non-combatant and thousands of miles away from any battle zone was also shot and wounded by the enemy, actually spies operating clandestinely in the desert southwest. The two spies, Japanese both, had been doing radioactive soil sampling across Arizona and New Mexico looking for evidence of any U.S. atomic tests. When my uncle came upon the two one of them was dying or near dying from an unattended rattlesnake bite. After my uncle cured him using his knowledge of indigenous plants and such, they shot him, took his truck and left him to die. See:


My uncle was truly an interesting man. If you explore the various references and links throughout all the pages I offer regarding my uncle and look at his philosophy, the circles he traveled in, the people he interacted with and knew, many famous and experts in their fields, with his influence on them and their influence on him, you might ask yourself why isn't he famous as well? In the end you can basically see why just by his nature. British playwright and author, William Somerset Maugham, writing of his main character Larry Darrell as he searches for and finds spiritual Enlightenment as chronicled in the novel The Razor's Edge, probably sums it up best with the following paragraph:

"The man I am writing about is not famous. It may be that he never will be. It may be that when his life at last comes to an end he will leave no more trace of his sojourn on earth than a stone thrown into a river leaves on the surface of the water. But it may be that the way of life that he has chosen for himself and the peculiar strength and sweetness of his character may have an ever-growing influence over his fellow men so that, long after his death perhaps, it may be realized that there lived in this age a very remarkable creature."

The Razor's Edge

A few years before my uncle died he embarked on a personal expedition to explore the Vortexes at Machu Picchu high in the Andes of South America. Afterwards he traveled over to the Brazilian side to bio-search the banisteriopsis caapi vine associated with the Ayahuasca Sorcerer's Brew along the upper reaches of the Amazon when he broke his leg. Returning to the United States, weak from the complications of that break, with dementia sneaking in and his body defenses down, cancer took over and he died a couple of years later at age eighty-six. For a more indepth more-or-less year by year break down of the adventures and actual years, dates, and times my uncle and I spent together please see:


Their Life and Times Together










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Fundamentally, our experience as experienced is not different from the Zen master's. Where
we differ is that we place a fog, a particular kind of conceptual overlay onto that experience
and then make an emotional investment in that overlay, taking it to be "real" in and of itself.




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Ironically enough, the FIRST time my uncle ever phoned me, at least long distance anyway, the desert community of Kingman, Arizona was involved as well. It was the end of May 1953 and my uncle wanted me to join him there. Because of the subject matter of the call, a suspected UFO crash similar to Roswell, my dad blew his stack and put the kibosh on the two of us traveling together.

Instead my dad sent me to spend the summer with my stepmother on her ranch deep in the Mojave Desert. Every time my uncle thought of that summer he went off on a tangent. No matter how many years passed he still could not believe that my dad would not let me join him in Kingman, but was willing to allow me to spend that same summer with my by then ex-stepmother --- who, in the regular every day turn of events, took me to meet one of the most infamous prostitutes Los Angeles had ever seen, Brenda Allen.

For more on the Kingman incident and level of involvement by my uncle please see KINGMAN UFO as well as the section on Kingman in Frank Edwards. See also the coverage of the lost Kingman letters as found in Judy Ann Woolcott and the story of a lost viking ship in the desert as found in Vikings of the Desert Southwest.



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In the paragraph this footnote is referenced to, speaking of my uncle, I write:

"(A)s we were parting he gave me a small package to deliver in person to a man in Laguna Beach, California --- and told me whatever I did, NOT give it to anybody else under any circumstances. When I arrived in Laguna Beach I went to an establishment on Pacific Coast Highway called Mystic Arts World as directed by my uncle. There someone took me to the man who was sequestered in a remote cave hidden in the hills above Laguna Canyon Road. The man, Dr. Timothy Leary. The contents of the box not known."(source)

The Laguna Beach establishment my uncle sent me to, Mystic Arts World, for all outward appearances looked like not much more than an early 60s head shop, with racks of tie-dyed shirts, the smell of burning incense, psychedelic posters, and bongs. It was actually the base of operations for a seemingly loosely organized albeit tightly knit outfit called The Brotherhood of Eternal Love. The Brotherhood dealt heavily in the movement and sale of marijuana, psychedelic mushrooms, and LSD --- reportedly with upwards of $200 million in sales in the late 60s. The organization began to fall apart shortly after its leader died of an overdose of synthetic psilocybin in August 1969 and the Mystic Arts World building burning to the ground following a mysterious fire that started just before midnight June 4, 1970, a fire widely viewed as arson. By 1974, following an August of 1972 multi-agency government raid, most of the remnants of the organization were dispersed, scattered, or gone.

However, before the raid, in 1971 the seminal book Be Here Now by Ram Dass, which Apple Computer mogul Steve Jobs, for example, mentioned as being highly influential in his life before Apple, was published. In the book, which became a wildly popular best seller and almost a bible in the counter-culture, Dass mentioned a deeply respected young white American he met in India called Bhagavan Das that was fully ingrained into the spiritual culture of India. The two of them traveled around the sub-continent together partaking of a variety of religious and spiritual undertakings as well as indulging in a lot of LSD. It just so happened Bhagavan Das was originally from Laguna Beach and because of his stature given him in the Ram Dass book, had become a growing sort of hero amongst the local LSD crowd associated with the Mystic Arts World and the Brotherhood of Eternal Love. In the milieu of Laguna Beach it wasn't long before Bhagavan Das was brought to my attention and I learned he had returned from India after six or seven years, living quietly as a civilian in the northern California bay area, most notedly, Santa Cruz and sometimes Berkeley.

Before the oncoming summer of 1974, at the request of my mentor who wanted my assist in helping him meet a friend who would soon be visiting from India, I headed north along the California coast slowly wending my way toward Sausalito, all the while crossing paths with a few friends and strangers along the way. One of the people I stopped to see was an old high school buddy who lived in San Jose and worked at IBM. While staying at his place I visited the Winchester Mystery House and, as outlined in what I have written about Steve Jobs in the link at the end of this footnote, I met the future to be computer genius in the garden there.

During our talk that afternoon he told me he was seriously contemplating going to India in an effort to find a guru. I mentioned Bhagavan Das to him saying there was a highly respected holy man just returned from India, now living in the area he should look up, a holy man that could give him all the ins-and-outs of a spiritual quest in India anybody would ever need or want. Jobs remembered Bhagavan Das almost immediately from having read about him in Be Here Now and seemed sort of excited about the prospect. However, if Jobs ever went to Bhagavan Das I never learned, as neither ever mentioned it as far as I know.




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The death of my uncle's brother, my father, in 1972 set into motion a lot of how Bhagavan Das came to be mentioned in a number of my works.

More than once in my writings, most notedly in Brenda Allen, I mention that the woman my dad was married to at the time of his death was not particularly warm toward me, out-and-out hate being more like it. Why such was the case I'm not certain. I think a good part of it stemmed from a continuing close relationship and almost reverence, deserved or undeserved, I held long into adulthood toward his divorced second wife, the woman I call my Stepmother and sometimes ex-stepmother in all my works. My dad's wife took her misplaced dislike she aimed toward me and blanketed it broadly across a number of other family members I was close to, of which one included my dad's brother, my uncle.

Toward the end of my father's life he had fallen into a coma, after which his wife, against the recommendations of a variety of doctors, had him put on life support --- even though for all practical purposes his major faculties and primary physical abilities were basically non-functional. When my father was first caught in the fire two years before and seemed on his last legs, my uncle came to see him. However, he was treated so shabbily by my dad's wife he vowed never to return regardless of the situation, a vow he held on to even to the point of not going to the funeral.

Several months before my dad fell into the coma, around the start of the summer of 1972, he called me to his bedside without the knowledge of family or friends, including his wife. He told me he had long rented a small, single-car garage-size storage unit unknown to anybody. In it he said was all kinds of stuff, all of which, any time from then forward and especially so before he died and before others became privey to it, was to be divided between my two brothers and myself as we saw fit --- except for two things. The Porsche-powered restored vintage Volkswagen that belonged to his daughter, my half sister, was to go to me. Second, in the storage unit was a large locked trunk clearly marked with his brother's name, my uncle, and that I was to take it to him post haste unopened without anybody's knowledge, even my brothers.

Adhering to my father's request to deliver to my uncle the trunk post haste (my dad's words), put me in Santa Fe unexpectedly on a quick couple of days turn around during late June early July of 1972. I say unexpectedly because as soon as I walked out of the hospital I went straight to the storage unit, picked up the trunk, and drove all night right to Santa Fe. Doing so put me into my uncle's schedule of doing things instead of the two of designing time around me being there.

During that couple of days stay my uncle had to meet up with, for some undisclosed reason, beat poet Allen Ginsberg, who just happened to be in town, and I went along. I wasn't introduced or meet Ginsberg, staying off some distance milling around the car as requested by my uncle while the two of them talked. However, I was close enough to see Ginsberg was traveling with a couple of hangers-on, one of which was a woman about 30 with ultra-short dark hair the other a very tall young man with full beard and dreadlocks.

The three-photo strip below was taken at the 1972 meeting in Santa Fe. The first photo shows Alan Ginsberg. The center photo has Bhagavan Das and Ram Dass shown together. The third photo shows him with Ram Dass and Ginsberg. Ram Dass, again, IS Dr. Richard Alpert, the author of Be Here Now, the 1971 book that shot Bhagavan Das as well as both Ram Dass and Bhagavan Das' guru Neem Karoli Baba to fame.

Although I didn't know it at the time, I quickly discovered the tall young man with Ginsberg was Bhagavan Das, who I learned about from my Laguna Beach cohorts, then sought out by me in Santa Cruz, California. By then his dreadlocks and beard were gone. Sometime between Santa Fe and Santa Cruz, as the story goes and the legend grows, Bhagavan Das was visiting the venerated Tibetan holy man Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche either in Vermont in 1973 OR at the Naropa Institute in Boulder, Colorado OR at a retreat of some kind in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and after a long night of booze, sex, and drugs, Das passed out only to wake up the next morning with his head shaved and all his dreadlocks gone courtesy Trungpa. Depending on who's account you read the head/beard shaving incident has been cited for each of the three locations, although the 1973 date for the event usually holds steady.

I never met Ginsberg. That afternoon with my uncle was the closest I came to an introduction. Although it was apparent the two of them knew each other why my uncle requested me to remain by the car while the two of them talked was never clear. I could have easily overridden the whole thing if I so chose, and perhaps I should have. I carried a major ace-in-the-hole relative to Ginsberg that would have elevated me quickly with him had I selected to do so --- that ace being me having met a few years prior a major high-profile woman in his inner circle that had disappeared, a woman by the name of Hope Savage. She had been with the Beats ever since Ginsberg's top player Gregory Corso brought her into their circle. She had gone to Paris and Corso had went in search of her with no luck. Ginsberg ran into her in India a few years later and was the last to see her when the two of them said goodbyes in Calcutta in 1962. However, I had inadvertently crossed paths with her wandering in a remote section of the Himalayas since then. He would have flipped had he found out about it. See:



The time that elapsed between my graduation from Redondo Union High School in my late teens and being drafted into the Army in my early twenties, turned out to be really unproductive years for me.

Some years before and not very many days into my junior year in high school, I began hanging out at a couple of heavyweight coffee houses in the South Bay. The first was called the Iconoclast, just a few steps east up the hill from El Paseo and the Horseshoe Pier on Wall Street in Redondo Beach. The other was the Insomniac on Pier Avenue just across the street from Howard Rumsey's Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach. Even though Allen Ginsberg read "Howl" at the Insomniac, and although never reaching anywhere near the level as other Beat places such as Greenwich Village --- and me not really knowing a whole lot about it in those days --- I was hoping to be or at least think I was "cool." Heavy Beat poetry or not, best part for me fell back on no more than basic instincts, taking home to my place an extraordinarily fabulously beautiful young redhead, an Iconoclast regular, regularly. Or at least once in a while, or on occasion. Or maybe just once or twice, by the name of Jolene. Unfortunately Jolene loved speed and sadly, dead from Bennies before having even reached the end of the 1960s.

During that period between high school and the draft, totally and completely unrelated to me being cool or not being cool, going to the Iconoclast, the Insomniac, or knowing Jolene, out of nowhere I met the most beautiful woman in the world. See:


It was during the 1972 Kingman meeting that my uncle told me, along with hundreds of other things, about a movie actress friend of his named Rochelle Hudson and her involvement in spying and espionage activities in Mexico during World War II.

It just so happens Hudson died that year. In February, not long after her death nor mentioning Hudson's name, my uncle called me saying he was going to San Bernardino by train and would like me to pick him up and take him to the home of the mother of a friend of his who had died recently to pay his respects, the mother of the deceased living in Palm Desert, less that an hours drive basically south into the desert from San Bernardino. I agreed, but the plan never came to fruition as there was never a formal funeral and the deceased's ashes were apparently scattered overseas.

A few months later when I was in Santa Fe per my dad's request with my own car and would be returning home the same direction in a couple of days, my uncle felt it would be an opportune time for the two of us to have another one of our infamous road trips together by me taking him to Palm Desert on my way back. I agreed, but stipulated he would have to find his own way back to Santa Fe after being delivered to Palm Desert, of which he agreed to.

Up until arriving in Palm Desert and locating the "mother" I had no idea who the mother was, who she was the mother of, or how she fit into the overall scheme of things relative to my uncle and possibly even me. However, after introductions, although it took awhile to place her, I eventually put it together as she being the exact same onetime "older woman" who I saw on the beach on 2nd Street in Hermosa with another woman when I was a very young boy. The woman turned out to be Mae Hudson, the mother of actress Rochelle Hudson, recently deceased. While Mae and my uncle talked I walked around looking at all of the memorabilia that related to her daughter. It was only then I started putting all of it together.

Even though my uncle told me about Rochelle's espionage activities, what I didn't know was that those activities were not common knowledge. Just taking it for granted that they were, and not knowing a whole lot about Rochelle Hudson in those days, to just add myself into the conversation I asked the mother about Rochelle's World War II involvement with the Navy's Intelligence Service. The mother, apparently thinking that my uncle would or did have knowledge of such activities had no problem sharing, even to the point that she brought me a cigar box size container that was at least half full of all kinds of stuff related to what Rochelle had done in the war. She said she had a lot of general memorabilia regarding Rochelle scattered around in a number of places, but most of her war years items had eventually ended up in the box she handed me. Inside were five or six well worn photographs, copies of orders and reports, I.D. cards, travel records, a couple of brass uniform buttons, and a food voucher or two. While she talked, I just casually thumbed through the stuff, still without knowing that all of Rochelle's involvement wasn't common knowledge and not putting any special importance on what I was looking at. What the mother told me pretty much parallels what is already out there so either she or Rochelle must have told somebody along the way what she did. The most important part of course was the mother's first hand verbal confirmation as to her daughter's actual participation in all the war time activities so alluded to her.

How successful was Hudson? Authors John R. Monett, Lester Cole and Jack C. Cleland in their book Harbor Defenses of Los Angeles in World War II, reported that in December 1941 several enemy planes were believed to be hidden near the desert communities of Indio and Brawley in the Imperial Valley of California and that an air attack by German airmen from across the border where additional planes were under cover, was immanent. I also wrote that the attack, which everybody must know never came off, even though all units of the harbor defenses were put on alert and ready for action.

Everybody knows the aerial strike never happened and the reason why that attack by German planes from across the border never happened, at the scheduled time or not at all, was because of Rochelle Hudson --- and the reason why she is famous in the espionage world as a success. Hudson, along with her Naval officer husband, on one of their vacations uncovered a supply of high octane aviation fuel stashed by German agents in Baja California. After the discovery the stash was destroyed and without the necessary fuel to implement the planned attack, it was scrapped. Her other claim to fame, accorded to her by others and not from her, was her discovery in World War II of a fully functional secret Japanese submarine refueling and repair base hidden in the swamp-like estuaries along the Pacific coast of Mexico about 60 miles north of the Guatemala border and going now by the name the La Palma Secret Base as linked below.



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As outlined in The Last American Darshan, after six months or so in India as a young boy, upon returning to the U.S., in that my immediate family in California had apparently dispersed to the four winds following the death of my mother, the foster couple I was traveling with left me unexpectantly and unannounced with a relative of mine in Pennsylvania that didn't know me and who I didn't know. It is not clear how long I was there nor who I was traveling with, but it is known that that late in June of 1944 I somehow left Pennsylvania for Chicago and there boarded the Number 19 Santa Fe Chief headed westbound toward Los Angeles.

Even though a lot of what went on in those days relative to me is unclear, the fact that I was on the Chief is well known because around midnight of July 3, 1944, between Flagstaff, Arizona and Williams, on a high speed downhill run and behind schedule, the Chief's locomotive, a powerful Baldwin built 4-8-4 Northern with 80 inch drive wheels and clocking out at over 90 miles per hour, hit a marked 55 mph speed limit curve, with the locomotive derailing and sliding in the dirt on it's side off the tracks for well over 500 feet before coming to a stop. The rest of the 14 car train ended up in various stages of derailment and wreckage on and off the track, some cars remaining upright with two actually staying on the tracks undamaged. The fireman and three passengers were killed. 113 passengers along with 13 train employees injured, among them the severely injured engineer.

(photo courtesy Arizona Republic)

Although I was unhurt, the person or people I was traveling with was among the injured and taken, with me along with them, to either Williams or Flagstaff. Because of the nature of their injuries, whoever I was traveling with was held-up under doctors care for several days, leaving me without direct adult supervision. My grandmother, who had been contacted by the railroad, called my uncle in Santa Fe. He inturn contacted a nearby tribal spiritual elder to oversee me until someone figured out how to get me to my grandmother's in California.

The events found in this footnote has also been presented by me in virtually the same manner and same form in any number of my other works. What I have not included in the above account or have not revealed previously is a part of the crash event that circulates around the somewhat mysterious tribal spiritual elder my uncle arranged for me to be watched by until he, my uncle, could catch up with me. As you may recall, after the wreck, because the adult or adults I was traveling with had been hospitalized, I was left without adult supervision. I write about sitting in the waiting room late at night in some train station out in the middle of Arizona with the tribal spiritual elder waiting for my uncle to come get me.

What I don't write about is that I recognized the spiritual elder the moment he walked into the hospital waiting area looking for me as found in the following quote:

"Mid-evening on the night of the-unknown-to-anybody at the time up-coming crash I had gone to bed in the bunk in my compartment and as far as I knew had fallen fast asleep. Sometime during that period between the time I fell asleep and the crash occurred I found myself neither asleep nor in my bunk but outside of the train standing barefoot on the desert floor in the middle of the night in my PJs some distance off from a set of railroad tracks, my hand being held by an elderly Native American man."


Three years later, within a day or two of the third year anniversary of the train wreck, July 3, 1947, found me and my uncle traveling in the desert southwest having passed through Williams, Arizona on our way to Fort Sumner, New Mexico to visit the gravesite of Billy the Kid. We stopped at the crash site to pay reverence to those that died and my survival. While my uncle sat in the truck I walked the tracks where the wreck occurred. In the three short years since the derailment barely a sign of anything having happened remained, the wind along with the heavy downfall of summer monsoons nearly erasing the 500 foot groove and other marks caused by the huge Baldwin locomotive and passenger cars. If a person was unfamiliar with what happened it would have been unobservable.

As we left the crash site my uncle told me the story about me sitting in the waiting room of some train station in Arizona with the tribal spiritual elder late at night waiting for him, my uncle, to arrive and take me to California. The spiritual elder was quite obviously Native American and I was quite obviously not. A lot of people seemed concerned with me traveling with an Indian, that is, except for an older man who seemed concerned that I might be bored.

He came over and sat next to me and asked if my dad was in the war. I told him no that he worked in the shipyards. Asking if I liked comic books he opened his suitcase and pulled out one called Blue Bolt. All the while he was thumbing through the pages like he was looking for something he was telling me he had a son in the war and that his son was a pilot. After he reached a certain spot he folded open the pages and pointed to a story about a group of American pilots that shot down 77 German planes in one outing. Then, carefully reading the story page by page and pointing to the different pictures he told me that his son was one of the pilots. My uncle told me with that I took the book from the man's hands completely fascinated, so much so I read the story over and over without stopping or setting it down. The man, seeing how much I appreciated the comic and the story, said I could have it. After that my uncle said I continued to read it again and again all the way back to California and months afterwards. That story is covered extensively in:



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