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A TRUE STORY
The Untold Story of the Most Powerful Man in the World —RYAN MORAN— Who Shaped the Planet for Peace
by Ira Teller, Pharm. D., Esq.
Copyright © 2010 by Ira Teller, Incorporated All Rights Reserved Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, the scanning, uploading, copying, and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of Ira Teller, Incorporated is prohibited and illegal. This book is a work of non-fiction. It is a true story written in the form of a novel. Only the names, dates and places have been altered. ISBN 1453882030 Printed in the USA First Edition October 10, 2010
DEAR SCRIBD READER: THE COMPLETE BOOK CAN BE READ IN ITS ENTIRETY FOR FREE AT
PROLOGUE CHAPTER ONE: THE PRESENCE CHAPTER TWO: ARROGANCE CHAPTER THREE: BABA CHAPTER FOUR: MOTHER OF THE UNIVERSE CHAPTER FIVE: RECLAMATION CHAPTER SIX: PSI CHAPTER SEVEN: RYAN MORAN CHAPTER EIGHT: THE DEVICE CHAPTER NINE: MAUREEN CHAPTER TEN: MERGING CHAPTER ELEVEN: SOMETHING MOST PECULIAR CHAPTER TWELVE: THE BIG BLACK WALL CHAPTER THIRTEEN: DARK MATTER CHAPTER FOURTEEN: SHOW TIME CHAPTER FIFTEEN: FORTUNE COOKIE CHAPTER SIXTEEN: PATENT PENDING CHAPTER SEVENTEEN: ETCHED IN MY MIND CHAPTER EIGHTEEN: SNAPSHOTS CHAPTER NINETEEN: CATHOLIC IRISH ALCOHOLICS CHAPTER TWENTY: BROOKE’S LAW CHAPTER TWENTY–ONE: ERIKA CHAPTER TWENTY–TWO: ROAD TRIP CHAPTER TWENTY–THREE: INEBRIATED CHAPTER TWENTY–FOUR: SANCTIONED CHAPTER TWENTY–FIVE: REMORSE CHAPTER TWENTY–SIX: THE LONG YEARS CHAPTER TWENTY–SEVEN: RESET CHAPTER TWENTY–EIGHT: WONDERMENT CHAPTER TWENTY–NINE: LEGACY EPILOGUE
“There is one principle that bars all other principles…” WHAT IS BIG? As a child, this was the title of one of the first books I ever read. A picture of an obviously large elephant next to a tiny mouse adorned the front cover to illustrate for young children the difference between large and small. Every calf in the herd, fry in the sea, and chick in the sky learns this same lesson about relative size. The difference between large and small is a reality that permeates this whole world. Later, as an adult, I would revisit these relative extremes in size in a new way and on a scale that I could have never previously imagined. After I had met the most powerful man in the world, I had learned firsthand—in a stunning and profound way— the answer to the question, what is big? The most powerful man in the world was Ryan Moran, and until his death, we were friends and business partners for nearly a quarter of a century. Ryan had founded and once ran the largest, most powerful transnational corporation on the face of the planet. Yes, he was big, powerful, and a legend among all those who knew him and knew about him. Whether through the barrel of a gun, a signature put to a document, or a mere idea placed into another’s mind, Ryan Moran personified big. Although unknown to most people, until now, Ryan nonetheless touched the lives of many through the vastness of his corporate empire and far-reaching personal sacrifices. Like a pebble cast into a pond, the life of Ryan Moran cast waves upon waves of influence and change that have spread with infinite scope across the world—no one has been left unaffected, not even you. Ryan Moran’s life and legacy has touched all our lives in profound and lasting ways. This book is based upon
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my recollections of my conversations, adventures, and friendship with the most powerful and influential man in the world—Ryan Moran. The notion of the nation-state no longer exists as it once did— the United States, Russia, Germany, China, Japan, and all other nations are now controlled by transnational corporations. These transnationals are their own entities, owing no allegiance to any one nation but having holdings and influence in them all. They exist offshore—they are incorporated in financial centers outside the jurisdiction of their primary operations—yet they control the financial and political outcomes of all countries. Operating with their own set of rules, regulations, and laws that transcend those of the nation-states, some transnationals (as you may already know) are so powerful that they even have their own armies. As the man who once controlled the largest and most powerful transnational organization, Ryan had stewardship over the world. Decide for yourself how big that is. Ryan Moran was an existentialist, clearly knowing who he was and his role in the universe. Arguably, few people possess a sense of self and purpose as strongly as he did. The world was his to direct, and he did so by wielding a raw, unmitigated power that flowed from his innate, profound sense of self. Some standing in his presence would feel intimidated, as Ryan’s presence was often truly palpable. When I asked about this, he explained, “They see within me that which they do not yet have in themselves.” This is not to say that Ryan Moran was without faults. To the contrary, he knew his character defects and openly acknowledged them, seeking corrective action. But what by far outshined all else was his humility and wanting to do good as he lived among us. When I asked him why he set up his organization, he responded, “To do good in the world.” Perhaps one of the greatest means by which Ryan could do good in the world was facilitated by the development of a new technology, the Psi-control Switch—the most advanced technology that has ever yet existed. How did Ryan learn of the Psi-control Switch? Not in any top-secret governmental meetings. Not from top physicists or engineers. To learn of this device and how Ryan learned of it, you
will have to read on and be introduced to me, Ira Teller, the unsuspecting pharmacist with a dream who happened to meet Ryan Moran one day. Our chance encounter would later change the course of the world and launch the future of the Psi-control Switch for the benefit of mankind. To tell you a bit about myself, I am anomalistic—the outlier point on the curve which, to most, is seen as different. Granted, at times my way of thinking can be tangential and angled from the norm, but I have embraced this as a positive attribute, and it is the reason that I am telling this story to you; I was able to see something different from the norm in Ryan, a unique superiority of thought and purpose that most others could not discern about the man. You see, I am an explorer, an adventurer, which requires residing near the edge, being dangerously close to the abyss. My journeys through the physical world, my ascent within the spiritual realm, and my scientific explorations of psychical domains are a collective testimony to this. If I had stayed in the middle, in the norm, then Ryan and I would never have met, this story would have never been told, and the world would not have been changed for the better. Ryan was fond of paraphrasing Herbert Spencer, “There is one principle that bars all other principles, and that is contempt prior to investigation.” How true this is. There will always be the contemptuous naysayers, doubters, and conspiracy theorists who have not traveled far, yet they will try to bar the idea that Psi-control Switches exist, and that one man, Ryan Moran, shaped the destiny of the world. But for those of you who want to explore and investigate, I ask that you bear with me, if only for a relatively brief moment in time. Try to see your universe from a different perspective—try seeing through the shared vision of Ryan Moran and me. Here, I will offer a special note to historians, present and future. I apologize if some accuracy has been lost by the long passage of time. As one would expect, there may be some unintended alterations to my recollections. Incidents, events, dates, names, and conversations may not necessarily be quite as accurate or even in as perfect an order as they ideally should be. I will, nonetheless, do my best to recall and recount these details in a fair way so as to at least give you the
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flavor and feeling of the situations as they unfolded. Furthermore, there are aspects of Ryan’s life and of my life that I cannot yet reveal at this time in order to protect myself and others. As Ryan often told me, “Sometimes the withholding of a small part of the truth is not only wise, but prudent.” I believe it is extremely prudent in this case. Matters and names related to national security issues will not be discussed except in the most discreet fashion, as Ryan’s world was a world of secrets, and he was, indeed, the master of secrets. Although Ryan’s love life was prolific, there are those who may not want this disclosed. Consequently, this intimate subject matter will be mentioned in only the most scant and rudimentary ways, cleansed to some extent so as not to disrupt others’ lives in an adverse way. While the scope of Ryan Moran’s life could fill volumes, I will try my best to set down the key points of his life throughout the years that I knew him, and of our history-altering involvement with the Psi-control Switch. Historians and others are welcome to examine the life of Ryan Moran long after my death. Like you and me, they too will have to revisit the question of what is big.
CHAPTER ONE: THE PRESENCE
“Where are you going, son?” Fifty million dead—both soldiers and the innocent—slaughtered and butchered in a bloodbath of unimaginable proportions. Young and old, rich and poor, women and children—it did not matter. They were all caught up in the gears of that Great War machine called World War II, only to be churned out in rivers of blood, with shredded bodies spewed out upon the land. Their screams for mercy and horrible last cries of pain were met by an icy indifference, smothered by the insanity of it all. It was then, in the midst of that great horror, that agents in the various intelligence communities met in secret. These were those men who witnessed the horror of that period first hand. Talking among themselves, they knew there needed to be a better way to stabilize governments, nations, and peoples; consequently, they swore their allegiance to one another to never let a war like this happen again. These were not just agents of the Allies but included their like-minded counterparts on the opposite side, agents of the Axis powers. Suffering can bind people together in unusual ways. Men who were willing to meet one another in warfare now met to fight a different kind of battle—a battle of ideology, stability, and peace. And so, after convening to ponder their strategies, these agents returned to their respective homeland agencies scattered about the world, knowing that something needed to be done. They kept in touch with one another as they formed a loose affiliation of covert progenitor cells underlying their own individual organizations. They could not have known that a redeemer was coming—Ryan Moran would be the one to eventually unify them into an international intelligence agency surpassing all other intelligence agencies in scale and scope.
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It would become the largest and most powerful agency in the world. This is how it all started, and this is what Ryan Moran told me. I was restless as a teenager—still filled with the freshness of life and the exhilaration of adventure, but I didn’t know the nature of the world or my place within it. Odd, isn’t it, that I should be searching for something but did not know what. Somehow, I had this notion that the more experiences a person had, the better they would be. Perhaps, hidden somewhere in the midst of all this, I would find the object of my search. With caution and reason cast aside, I made a purposeful attempt to take it all in—whatever came my way. I set out to explore the world and my place in it, as so many did … by thumbing rides. It was the golden age of hitchhiking, with the images of Woodstock, war protests, and the summer of love still fresh in my mind. ‘Never turned down a ride—no, not even once—for that was the hitchhikers’ creed. I let the road be my teacher, and I was the eager student willing to learn. Whatever joy or harshness the road presented, I accepted. Ride it to the very end, was my motto. So, I was on the road again, with the wind to my back and the sun’s warmth upon my face, when I saw it far off in the distance. An orange-colored VW bus was among the other vehicles traveling on the road that day. I had chosen my hitchhiker sign with care: one said North, one said South, one said East, and another West, but my favorite said Anywhere. With a knowing sense of assurance, I put out my thumb and waited. There was an almost magical connection between a hitchhiker and a VW van in those days; like a magnet pulling on steel, you could feel the connection. I was a master of the road, having hitched tens of thousands of miles, and this was just one of my many rides. With all the crazies, drunks, and creatures of the night, I rode along while listening to their wild stories and experiencing their bizarre worlds. From mothers and saintly Sunday churchgoers, to witches and warlocks with sinful pasts and secret books, I sat sharing their lives. So many winding roads were filled with so many varied people and unknown places—a virtual stream of consciousness. Like a constant game of tag, I went from vehicle to vehicle where I was always “it,”
and wherever they went, so would I. A monkey throwing darts at a cosmic map must have been my guide. Rain or snow, black or white or shades in between, on the back of a tractor, in the cab of a truck, or in a VW van, it did not matter—regardless of who or what came my way, I continued the journey. “Beware!” some people would caution me, as I entered their cars, “There is a killer on the loose!” Then, they would ask me, in their own nervous way, if I was him. No matter who stopped to give me a ride, each had their own reason for stopping, whether they were lonely, tired, good-willed, curious, or just wanted an adventure of their own. Some claimed that they recognized me, while others asked, “Where are you going, son?” “Wherever you are going,” I would reply. The farmers, salesmen, and students all had someplace to be; so, like the wind blowing the winged seeds of a dandelion, I allowed myself to be spread across the land. Now, standing on the side of the road in Arizona’s summer heat, I watched as the approaching VW began to swerve in and out of traffic until it finally pulled up to me and came to a halt. The driver rolled down his window and smiled broadly, “Where are you going?” “Anywhere,” I answered, smiling back. The front of the vehicle was packed full with him, his wife, and their two children. Behind them was a pile of luggage that filled the van. He said, “We’re going to the Grand Canyon, but we don’t have any more room in the van.” “Can I hop on top and sit on the luggage rack?” I asked. “Sure,” he grinned, “climb on!” And that I did. It was a glorious ride that day. Passersby would blow their horns and shout, waving to me as we drove along the rim of that great canyon. What a spectacle! Feeling uplifted, and riding so high above the road, I sat on my kingly throne of luggage reveling in the exhilaration of this new adventure. Eventually, the van pulled over at the roadside and stopped. I climbed down, thanked them for the ride, and with smiling faces we parted our ways. Although I did not know it then, it had been a ride to my destiny.
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The sun soon began to set, filling the Grand Canyon with shadows and blackness, eventually forming an infinite pool of darkness. Nearby, a trail led down into the canyon’s murky depths, the trail head marked with a small sign stating, This way to the bottom. Some people, looking weary and tired, stumbled up to the head of the trail, finishing their climb. I started my descent, yearning to find out what was so grand about this rather large void of nothingness that held so many peoples’ attention. It was a long and arduous walk down a narrow and winding path. Darkness prevailed as there was no moon that night. Every now and then, I would meet another person or a couple of people making their ascent along the way. Ghostly and ash-colored in appearance, they proceeded upward, in the opposite direction, in an exhausted silence and soon vanished into the night. I persisted downward, and spurred on by with my desire to get to the bottom before daybreak, I picked up a brisk pace. Soon, I came to a place that was particularly steep and close to the canyon’s rim. There, in a foolish hurry, I lost my footing on some loose rocks, fell onto my back, and slid toward the precipice. Sliding perilously downward, I clawed at the rocks and dirt in a dusty panic, trying anything to stop myself … but … in just a few frightful seconds … I slid over the edge. As a final act of desperation, I grabbed onto a branch of scrub brush—stopping my fall and certain demise. For an instant, I dangled there, clutching the bit of brush—it was all that held me back from drawing my last breath. With eyes wide, and a herculean effort, I pulled myself up onto the edge of the rim and scrambled back a few feet. I sat there, momentarily short of breath, shaking and trembling from the inside out, and knowing that death had been near. Then … I felt a presence descend upon me. Mist-like, and imparting the sense that someone was holding me, I sat in awe and silence. Comforting and yet strange at the same time, it caressed me in a loving way that I had never experienced before. Ephemeral at best, it soon lifted, merging back into the night. Confused, I looked around, but no one was there. Slowly standing to my feet, I stared up into the blackness of the sky to see all those stars. There were millions and millions of them twinkling in the warm desert night,
forming the great Milky Way. In my bewilderment and astonishment, I shouted out to them, “Who are you?” but I heard only my echo off in the distance. Although the question was never answered, I knew that I had a momentary glimpse of the infinite. This must be the inner workings of the universe, I thought to myself that night. Trying to grasp it with my mind, I wondered what fortune would come my way.
CHAPTER TWO: ARROGANCE
“Boy, that was bizarre!” Nearly a decade had passed since I experienced the puzzling spiritual presence that descended upon me in the Grand Canyon. I filled this chasm of time by studying the world and its multitude complexities in hopes of better understanding the inner workings of the universe, and knowing who I was and where I fit in the grand scheme of things. Leaving the wanderlust of the open road behind me, I embarked on a new journey—the disciplines and rigors of university course work. I had decided to learn more about the world through books and lectures, and the inevitable personal growth that campus life and its unique socialization has to offer. Here, I hoped to develop the knowledge and skills necessary to prepare myself for the rigors of life, and for, perhaps, making a difference in the world. Maybe, along the way, I would even gain some insight into the enigmatic presence I encountered that day at the Grand Canyon. But it soon became apparent, through my studies, that I would need to conform to the economic realities of our time. I could not be an ideological, pioneering, perpetual student for the rest of my days. Financial imperatives and being gainfully employed ruled the day. For a hitchhiker like myself, this conformity was not always an easy fit, and many times the proverbial square peg had to be forced through the round hole. The way of the hitchhiker’s road is not always well accepted in higher levels of academia. It is easily misunderstood. Yet in the end I was able to pass their tests and join society, eager to make my mark. What arrogance I had, as I look back upon the landscape of my early years. I had just finished my Doctor of Pharmacy degree —a professional doctorate degree with an emphasis in clinical
pharmacy—and I was working as a pharmacist at Lockport Community Hospital in Mapleton, New York. Surely I was someone to be reckoned with. Had I not just finished studying the biological and chemical sciences that were the underpinning for modern day drug therapy, and hence, wasn’t I helping to define the next decade of medical therapies? As an expert, I was well paid in an area of burgeoning importance to the medical community and to the world at large. Who can argue with an expert? Medical practitioners sought me out for my views and opinions in life and death matters. Unquestionably, I must have been someone important. It was within this rigid, inner mental framework—this plague of grandiosity upon my mind—that I would learn something of significance. I read an article by Dolores Krieger, RN, PhD, about a healing technique that she and a clairvoyant colleague had developed in the Division of Nursing at New York University called Therapeutic Touch. She was training nurses to use their hands to smooth and redirect the energy fields surrounding patients as a transpersonal healing modality. Aura combing, humph! Indeed! I thought, to myself. This new age fluff certainly flew in the face of all the science I had learned, having no just reason for being published let alone taught. My thoughts brought me back to my eleventh grade high school friend, Scott, and an event that took place in his parents’ house. His family was gone for the day, and we were alone in the kitchen. He pulled a large bowl from out of a cupboard, filled it with water from the sink, and placed it in the center of the kitchen table. Then he took a small piece of aluminum foil, fashioned it into what he called a small boat, and floated it in the middle of the bowl. I was instructed to sit in a chair on my side of the table while he sat opposite me, and using only our minds … we were to push the boat. The person who could push the boat to the other person’s side would be the winner. So, we sat there in complete silence, locked in mortal combat, each trying to push the boat to the other’s side with our minds. I focused my mind on the boat, and so did he, but … it did not budge. It felt like an eternity as we sat there. I doubled my intensity, as did he, but still … no movement. After about ten
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grueling minutes of mental warfare, I broke off and told him that I did not think that this was going to work. He also broke off his mental grip upon the boat and told me that it was not working because we could not sufficiently focus our mental energy. He explained to me that if he was to take a sheet of the aluminum foil and smear it with peanut butter, then place another sheet on top of it and smear it with peanut butter, and was to do so again and again, it would be of the correct size that he could then shape it in the form of a pyramid. This, we could place upon our heads which would give us the power to move the boat. Scott went for the peanut butter, and I went for the door saying, as I hurriedly left his house, “I’ll see you later, Scott,” while thinking, Boy, that was bizarre! With this memory of Scott’s peanut-butter-pyramid hats fresh in my mind, I crafted a disdainful letter to Doctor Krieger. This was the first time that I had ever written a critically scathing letter like this and, to date, the last time also. I do not clearly remember what I wrote, other than asking how she could publish such dribble without proper scientific understanding and documentation. I smugly dropped the letter into the mail box and waited for her reply, certain of the outcome. Shortly thereafter, she wrote back to me with a letter of her own. She was kind and gentle, and merely asked that I read the literature—of which she enclosed several references— before I was to be so critical. I read the so-called references, scoffed at them, and, in my arrogance, tossed her letter to the side of my desk, thankful that I was not of such like mindedness. No doubt, my inflated ego had gotten the best of me. I needed to be someone greater than myself, someone of importance, respected. I needed to be big. Perhaps then people would like me even more, cultivating and perpetuating my ego to even greater proportions in an act of self-aggrandizement. Maybe then I would even like myself. Little did I realize that the universe was about to hand me a series of ego-reducing lessons—teaching me what was big.
CHAPTER THREE: BABA
“Keep with the flow.” I had arrived early for an evening meditation program in Mahnaville, New York, so I stopped into a small commissary that was located inside the ashram. A meditation teacher, named Tom, had recommended that I meet someone whom he considered to be a great spiritual being—Baba. Sitting down on a bench between two people who were seated at a table, I turned towards the young woman who was on my left, hoping to ask her a few questions. “Excuse me,” I said, trying to get her attention—but she did not respond. “Excuse me,” I said, again, with a little more force—but, again, no response. That is when I had a chance to study her face. I noticed that her eyes were rolled up into their sockets so that only the whites showed, while she gently rocked back and forth. Rather odd, I thought. Perhaps it’s a cross between seizures and autism. Somewhat disturbed by the sight, I turned my attention to the gentleman who was seated to my right; perhaps he could tell me something about Baba. He was slowly eating a large salad that was heaped to the top with sprouts, as was customary in those days. “Excuse me,” I said. He turned toward me, still chewing his salad. “What is this place all about?” I asked him. He took a few more chews, swallowed, and said in a slow, yet deliberate voice, “Stars and stripes forever.” “Huh?” I replied. “Stars and stripes forever,” he enunciated, in an even more forceful tone. Then he waved his hand as if to dismiss me and returned to his salad. Well, I thought, maybe they weren’t the pick of the litter. Move along, I told myself. Keep with the flow.
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I made my way to the front of the building where someone told me that it was customary to bring a small gift when meeting a saint. So, I purchased an apple from their concession, thinking it a rather inexpensive price of admission, and entered the main hall. The room was large, and I estimated that it could hold nearly a thousand people. A greeter approached me and informed me that it was traditional for men to sit on the right side of the hall, and for women to sit on the left side. With a nod of my head as a silent acknowledgement, I took my place and sat down on the carpeted floor … on the right side of the hall. Looking about, I was perplexed by the sights and sounds around me. Certainly, this was different than anything I was used to. Large pictures of Indian men and women, dressed in somewhat traditional garb, adorned the walls, and pungent incense wafted through the air. Hundreds of people slowly drifted past me, each looking for a place to sit. Some carried small pillows, whereas others wore colorful shawls about their shoulders. They filled the hall to capacity, and then began settling down. Yes, I know—earlier I had said that when hitching rides, regardless of who or what came my way, I would continue my journey. Now, as I sat on the floor … I began to wonder if I should continue this particular journey. But my thoughts were quickly interrupted. A hush fell over the room as an announcer began to talk about this great and remarkable man whom we were about to meet. The announcer told us how his life had become completely transformed after he had met Baba. Gradually, the lights dimmed as everyone began to chant a mantra in a slow, rhythmic fashion, accompanied by Indian music. Shortly thereafter, the lights came back on, and there, seated in a rather oversized chair, was a small, somewhat elderly man from India. He wore a bright orange robe, had a slight smile upon his face, and was painted with a red dot upon his forehead. To his right was an attractive, well-dressed, young Indian woman by the name of Indrani who was his translator. She said that his name was Baba, and she interpreted the foreign and strange language as he began to speak. I remember little of what was said, except for the words, “the Self,” “God,” and “Where are you go10
ing?” After about an hour of Baba talking, we were invited to come to the front of the hall to meet him. People lined up in an orderly fashion, standing several abreast, waiting to meet him. It was a process that I had not previously experienced, but I took my place among them, clutching my small gift of an apple. I watched as those in the front of the line knelt down before him and bowed with a lowering of their heads to the floor. Simultaneously, they placed a small gift into a wicker basket at his feet then looked back up at him. He, in turn, would gently swat them on the head and shoulders with a large bundle of peacock feathers as they conversed with him through the translator. Shortly thereafter, they stood up and moved out of the way, making room for the next person to bow and prostrate themselves. Finally, my turn came. So I dropped to my knees, as I had seen others do, placed the apple into the basket, and for the first time in my life, I bowed to another human being. When I first looked up, Baba was looking down from his chair and smiling at me. Then, suddenly, a knife came out from under his robes, its steel blade glinting in the bright light. I gasped, and the crowd drew in an audible, stunned breath as he wielded the large, flashing blade over his head. Without warning, he made a menacing face and shouted at me, “—Arrgh!” Shocked and astonished by the sight, I instinctively crouched down lower, throwing up my arms as a defense against this mad man. But then I noticed that he had begun to smile, and soon he erupted into a full-blown, joyous laugh. Inquisitively, I searched his eyes, not knowing what to do. My heart was still pounding and I was trembling. He put the knife down on the table at his side. Now issuing a quieter, light-hearted laugh, he began hitting me on the head with the peacock feathers, and then he started talking to me. His translator, in perfect English and a dispassionate voice, said, “Baba wants to know what is your name?” I tried, in vain, to talk back, saying, “I uh … I uh …”, as I contorted my face, but no coherent words would come out. Now, with more of a grin than a smile, he spoke to me again, all the while swatting me with the peacock feathers. “Baba wants to
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know where you are from,” stated his translator. Still, I could not speak as I groped for words. What’s happening?! raced through my mind. Normally, I was glib and quick of tongue in social situations, but now, only sounds of gibberish came out from my lips in my bewildered state. I felt as though something had been severed between my mind and my voice. Finally, he rested the feathers upon my head and asked through his translator, “What do you do?” To my utter disbelief, I was still unable to utter even the simplest of words. He started laughing loudly again and removed the feathers from my head. I stood up and started my exit out of the hall. Someone gently grabbed my arm and said, “You are so lucky that Baba paid so much attention to you.” “Uh, sure,” I said, finally regaining my voice. “Say, what was the deal with the knife?” I asked. “Oh—,” he explained, “that is a chopping knife that they use in the kitchen to chop vegetables. Someone just before you gave it to Baba as a gift. He put it under his robes waiting to surprise you.” “Surprise me?” I asked, becoming agitated. “He sure as hell did! He scared the crap out of me!” I hurried to exit the building, telling myself, Well, if you’ve seen one Guru, you’ve seen them all.
CHAPTER FOUR: MOTHER OF THE UNIVERSE
“What is this?” I paid little attention to the Baba experience and went about my usual business for several days. I enjoyed most of my hospital duties—applying my clinical skills in the intensive care unit, the emergency room, and the chemotherapy unit—because helping others gave me a lot of satisfaction. On my days off, my friends and I hiked in the nearby woods, and in the evenings, we socialized in the various restaurants and bars. This pattern of life felt good, and at times, fun; yet, it had a degree of predictability about it—a degree of routine. Being relatively young—I was only 27—and not having much perspective on life, I assumed that this is what I would be doing for the rest of my days. Still, I wondered, is this all there is— the day to day, the ordinary? One Saturday morning, I sat down in my living-room to meditate. Relaxed in my chair, I noticed that something was different from previous meditations as I felt that I was floating downward into a deep, dark pool of nothingness. Although this sense of descending into a deep void was different than other meditations, I nonetheless felt at ease and comforted … but then, suddenly, a brilliant but somewhat small, blue sphere appeared in my mind’s eye. It sparkled, and I was fascinated by its luminescence; I had never seen such a sight before. I watched it in complete awe, mesmerized by its effervescent luster—a glow that seemed to be holding me more than my gaze was holding it. Then, abruptly, shooting out from its side, a darker ray of blue light—like that of a search beacon from a light house—pierced the darkness extending to the visual horizon of my mind. Wow! My mind reeled in astonishment. What is this? Then, very slowly, the sparkling sphere began a clockwise rotation as the darker ray of blue
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light rotated closer toward me. I was spellbound by this unbelievable vision as the ray of light moved closer and closer, finally hitting me squarely between the eyes. With a blast of illuminating brilliance, I felt a cracking open of my consciousness. Like water flowing out of a breech in a dam, I felt an unfolding as though my core was being poured out into the universe. And then, there, she appeared before me, with her dark eyes and a slightly lighter shade of skin—the great mother of the universe. Her luminous face filling my field of vision, a look of profound contentment was upon her. Magnificent waves of long, black hair were draped about her face, and then began to slowly float upward, framing her cheeks as if blown by a cosmic wind. The black tendrils floated up and outward, stretching from both sides of her face to the adjacent horizons, and as the flowing waves stretched outward, so too did my consciousness. Out to the ends of the universe we went, where on both sides of her face I could see stars, planets, and galaxies pasted upon the blackness that extended outward, beyond infinity. What a magnificent sight! As if it was a gift, the entire universe was placed before me, and I bathed in its delights, joyous and free. Abruptly, I felt a jolt run upward along my back. I began to shake violently for several minutes, as though some large, universal hand had grabbed my spine and was shaking me from side to side in a dizzying fashion. My eyes shot open, and I jumped to my feet more in abject surprise than fear. In a state of ecstatic bewilderment, I found Tom’s phone number and dialed. It seemed like an eternity before he picked up. Finally, he answered. “Tom?” I asked. “Yes—,” “This is Ira. What the hell is going on?!” “What do you mean, ‘What is going on?’” he asked. I then told him the story of what had just happened as best as I could. “Oh,” he said, in a dry, matter-of-fact manner, “he wants you.” “He wants me?” I asked
Mother of the Universe
“Yes,” Tom replied. “He just wants you.” “Who ‘just’ wants me?” I asked, feeling more than a little confused. “Baba. Baba wants you.” I hung up the phone, saying to myself in a puzzled voice, Baba wants me?
CHAPTER FIVE: RECLAMATION
“What kind of an asylum is this?” I had a dilemma, a real predicament. Like a mule standing equidistant between two bales of hay, not knowing which to choose, I was ready to starve rather than make a choice. Pay money to find God? It was mind boggling and went against the grain. Besides, what was God worth? But there I was, standing in line to register at what Tom told me was an intensive meditation retreat at an ashram—where, if I paid a fee, Baba, the Indian Guru, could give me a direct experience of God. I had a multitude of prior worldly experiences, as if I was seeking something in life, but I had never thought that God was the object of all my searching. Nonetheless, God must have been what I had hungered for all those years. No, I was not one of those on a quest to find God, because the word had never previously entered my thoughts. Jesus revivalists pounding Bibles at the airport, saints in movies on their knees looking upward for divine inspiration, monks in flowing ochre and saffron robes, yes—but me? I had heard and read the word “God” many times, but this was a concept that was too large and elusive for my mind to grasp. How could I have missed something so big? I wondered, as I stood there waiting to register. The idea that this man, Baba, could give me this experience at a meditation retreat strained against all rational thought. But didn’t I experience an unbelievable meditation session just days after being in his presence? Doubts arose in my mind. Maybe it had been my imagination. Maybe I had merely been drifting off and dreaming. Or, maybe it was something in the food or air. Just then, it dawned on me that there was much more non-sense in the world than sense. Wouldn’t it be more logical to stay on the side of non-sense as there was more of it? So with that in
mind, I cast aside my rational doubts and cautions, made a decision, and put my money down. Once again, I was sitting in the ashram hall with hundreds of other people. The lights were dimmed, and we were asked to close our eyes and meditate. But being curious, I kept my eyes open and watched. I could not resist. I saw Baba get out of his chair, and with his trusty bundle of peacock feathers and his translator in tow, he moved about the room. Now and again, he would momentarily stand in front of a seated person and swat them on the head and shoulders, as I had previously experienced. Then, after laying his hand upon the person’s head for a length of time, he moved onto the next person and carried out the same silent ritual. Some whom he touched would slump down like rag dolls, their heads falling into their laps. Some stayed upright, maintaining their posture but beginning to shake vigorously. Still others issued various unexpected and strange sounds such as crying, laughing, or barking and then roaring like lions. What kind of an asylum is this? I wondered. Between the shaking, howling, laughing, weeping, and roaring, the raucous hall was now filled with sights and sounds fit for the insane. I was spellbound, hearing and watching this unusual play before me, trying to make sense of it all. For the moment, surrounded by utter madness … I had forgotten that most everything was non-sense; futilely, I tried to engage my rational mind to put some shred of sense to it all. Now, it was my turn. Baba stood in front of me. I hurriedly closed my eyes and heard a swoosh … swoosh as I felt the feathers upon my head. Momentarily pressing his hand firmly against my forehead, he then moved it down and grabbed the flesh between my eyes. Like a slowly forced injection of liquid light, I felt his essence flow into me. Warm and substantive, it kindled a brilliant and blazing blue-white light that burst forth at the base of my spine. With a searing heat, it quickly raced up my spine, crowning the top of my head with a sparkling incandescence. It was a revelatory moment: I was the light, and the light was me. Nothing else ever existed except for that which Is. I reveled in this state of oneness, basking in its brilliance.
CHAPTER SIX: PSI
“To the moon and beyond….” “Here’s that letter,” I told myself, while reshuffling the papers on the table. I quickly reread the letter and muttered, skeptically, under my breath, “Can’t be.” Shortly afterwards, I was in the library looking up the references that Dr. Krieger had mailed to me. I was going to prove to myself that she was wrong, that therapeutic touch was a bunch of hooey. So, I set about reading the journal articles that she had listed, and soon I was thoroughly immersed in the research literature. Don’t get me wrong, I had no desire at that time to be an advocate of quackery. No poster boy here. To the contrary, I was merely going to investigate the research literature in order to demonstrate that Dr. Krieger’s farfetched postulations were incorrect—I would prove this to my own satisfaction, and then go on my merry way. In today’s scientific circles if I was to speak in terms of Quantum Mechanics, Schrodinger, or Entanglement, I would be seen as informed and well educated, or at least on the cutting edge. But Dr. Krieger’s forte was the manipulation of a bioenergetics field to promote healing, which was contradictory to the principles of modern-day science. Although she was not a parapsychologist, her research and journal articles led me directly down the path to the study of psychic phenomena. You have heard of extrasensory perception (including telepathy and clairvoyance) and psycho kinesis (mind over matter)—to put it politely, strange, weird stuff. About as weird as when my high school friend Scott and I tried to make an aluminum foil “boat” sail in a bowl of water, or, needless to say, as strange as fashioning peanut butter, aluminum foil pyramid hats to intensify our efforts. Movies and books portrayed psychic individuals and paranormal researchers as horses of a different color with zip codes straight
from Mars. Literature and the cinema served up portrayals of demonic, horned individuals with hooves to match who were abundantly worthy of a priest’s exorcism. The parapsychologist was often portrayed as the white-coated, frizzy-haired, mad scientist, and his subject was his zombie-like, unblinking prey-turned-cohort. Together, they were bent on psychically infecting your children— and their insanity would soon take over the world. Shutter your windows and lock your doors! Once touched by the paranormal’s spell, you were immediately pegged as a flake having gone over the edge. Mind over matter indeed! All parapsychology scientists and those such as Dr. Krieger were stirred into the same great bubbling cauldron of psychic madness. And as I began plowing through the literature, that is how I pegged Dr. Krieger and her ilk—as having zip codes straight from Mars. “Can’t be,” I muttered, again, upon delving deeper into the paranormal literature. “These concepts are not from this planet.” Certainly no respected scientist or biomedical researcher would ever view Dr. Krieger and the likes of her as responsible members of their community again. Reading on, I found myself increasingly engrossed in the literature—first for hours, then for weeks, and then for months. There must be a way to explain this, I told myself, but I could not find a logical, rational way to do so. Every time I stepped into a new area of study, I found no exit because one piece of research led to another. The more I read, the more I wanted to read—for if these parapsychologists were even remotely correct in their assumptions, then the outcomes were enormous in their potential. I wondered what my high school friend, Scott, would say. “Can it be that there is some validity to these psychic concepts?” I muttered, to myself. Granted, most of the parapsychology science was poorly constructed, but there always seemed to be that one thread that I would follow that would lead to the next and the next … until, finally, the outline of a tapestry began to form. Initially, I tried not to engage others in conversations about the subject matter, but I soon found that I could not help myself. I was too curious, and it was too rich in possibilities. Yes, there was the
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inevitable rolling of the eyes or the downward glance of contempt by my peers. “But what if…?” I conjectured. Some maintained a cold and icy stare, whereas others would give a bit of a laugh and then a flippant, dismissive wave of the hand. Always, there was the long, awkward silence that followed as they drifted away, all but shaking their heads. My affinity for the classical healing arts focused my attention on the origination of disease states within the biological sciences. Research in this area of the sciences was complicated and fraught with biological variability that further compounded its inherent complexities. Yet, it made sense to approach healing at the origin of a disease—to prevent it or to treat it early on—rather than try to cure a disease once it had developed or progressed. I made an attempt to see if this nascent psychic science could offer any clues on how to prevent or cure the start of a disease. Consequently, although confusing at first, I similarly focused my attention on this particular concept within the paranormal literature. I soon learned that the operative phenomenon underlying all parapsychological research is known as psi. This is not to be confused with the acronym psi as a unit of measure (pounds per square inch), the 23rd letter of the Greek alphabet, psi, or PSI, the title of an album by an industrial rock group released in 2002. The term “psi” concerning the paranormal was first coined in 1942 by a biologist, Bertold P. Wiesner, and a psychologist, Robert Thouless. Psi denotes anomalous processes of information or energy transfer, processes such as telepathy or other forms of extrasensory perception currently unexplained in terms of known physical or biological mechanisms. Furthermore, psi is divided into two main categories of paranormal phenomena: extrasensory perception (ESP) and paranormal action, or psycho kinesis (PK). Psycho kinesis held my attention the most. Maddening is the fact that many parapsychologists in this admittedly esoteric and enigmatic field of study do not know what psi is or how it works. Luckily for me, I did not need to know and just wanted to use it. Could this psi phenomenon of psycho kinesis actually change the energy of activation of chemical reactions and drive them
toward different outcomes? Could this mind-over-matter psi change enzymatic reactions at a cellular level and prevent or cure diseases? Some of the research literature indicated that this was indeed possible. Reading further, I sought out like-minded researchers in this fragile and new field. During our talks, it became apparent that they too had tried to disprove the authority of psychic phenomena, only to be drawn deeper into it. They now had a different view of the world and no longer saw things in linear and Newtonian terms. Rather, there emerged a framework of an omnipresent, evolving consciousness whereby all things were inherently interconnected. My many experiences with meditation came to mind—that profound sense of being one with the universe. I began to put the pieces together—the scientific and the paranormal—by recalling the concept of a delta switch that we used in a radiological preparations course I had once taken. Simply put, when the level of radiation of an isotope increased and reached a certain set point, the delta switch would kick in, setting off an alarm to warn us of the danger. Likewise, if I could monitor the change, the quantitative increase of a product in an enzymatic reaction due to psi, then I could have that increase trigger a delta switch and turn on an alarm or even a light. “Hmmm…,” I said, to myself, “this should work,” as I began to sketch out the idea on paper for a Psicontrol switch. “Not only that,” I mused, “but I should also be able to psychokinetically turn the switch on remotely from any distance and through any physical form of shielding or barriers.” At last, the sketch was complete, and I sat back in my chair to ponder it and all it portended. Wow…! To the moon and beyond, I reflected for a moment, now that’s an idea! Others, however, did not see it that way. I knocked on many doors looking for funding to conduct the Psi-control Switch research, only to be shown an equal number of exits. “But don’t you see the usefulness?” I would ask. Regarded as the ugly duckling of the research world, they shut their doors to me just as they shut their minds. One could almost hear their smug laughter and imitation
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“quack—quack—quack” behind those doors. The pond can be a lonely place when you are all by yourself. Meanwhile, I applied for, and received, several interviews to medical schools. I had the notion that I could especially help others with this research as a physician. With that in mind, I went to one particular interview in the Midwest, hoping to be accepted to med school. Before me sat a distinguished panel of five physicians who asked myriad questions. They indicated they liked my academic background and my answers to their questions, implying my acceptance was imminent. That is … until I committed academic suicide by going head to head with the portly, middle-aged woman physician at the center of the group. She obviously had a psychiatry background and asked, “Well, Dr. Teller,” she addressed me by my formal title, “what is that you like to do when you want to do something special?” “I like to meditate,” I replied. “No,” she said, seeming somewhat annoyed by the answer. “I mean, what is it that you like to do when you want to do something different?” “Well,” I again replied, “I really do like to meditate….” Now, with a scowl upon her face, she asked, “Don’t you ever go out and kick up your heels, and get excited?” I looked her straight in the eyes, not letting her belittle my meditational experiences saying, “No, ma’am. I think that excitement is pathological.” Needless to say, the interview spiraled downward from there, until I informed them that the only way that I would attend their school was if they funded my research. “Research?” the physician at the center asked, as she looked around at the others. “We didn’t know that you were doing any research. What is this about?” “Let me explain,” I began, as I presented my views on curing diseases using psychical research to affect aberrant enzymes. Halfway through my presentation, my eyes grew wide as I watched another woman physician slowly draw her hand up and tightly clutch a cross around her neck. The fear on her face was real. She
stared at me as though the devil incarnate was sitting before her spewing out irreverent utterances about sacred things. Can it be in this day and age that this attitude still exists? I asked myself. Finally, having had enough, I said to the panel, “At this point, I am now letting you know that you have failed your interview.” They sat there in total silence, bewildered, just looking at me. Again, I said, “You have failed your interview.” After a brief moment, one of the male physicians raised his hand and asked in a sheepish manner, “Will you please explain what you just said?” “Sure,” I answered back. “This panel is interviewing me, but I am also interviewing this panel. I do not like the answers that I have heard, and I am letting you know that you failed your interview. As a social grace, you will not have to wait the requisite two weeks for your denial letter, because I am letting you know now—you failed.” The panel sat in stunned silence. “Goodbye,” I said, still watching the startled looks upon their faces as I got up and left. Upon exiting, I thought to myself, Well, at least the positive outcome is that I won’t have to tickle prostates for a living anytime soon.
CHAPTER SEVEN: RYAN MORAN
“Yes … under the snake.” How the hell does he do that? I asked myself, seeing Ryan Moran for the very first time. There he was, in all his glory, grinning like the Cheshire cat and whooping it up as he bounced two attractive, young women up and down—one on each knee. The women laughed so hard, throwing their heads backward, that they almost fell off his lap. Then, barely collecting themselves, they whispered secrets into each others’ ears, punctuated by girlish giggles, before erupting in laughter once more, as they vied for his attention. Wow! was my next thought. Why can’t I do that? Momentarily, I studied Ryan Moran as they all laughed and carried on. We were young then, and his hair still had a light brown luster with a few curly locks on the sides. Between the laughs and smiles, I saw that his distinctive blue-gray eyes were wide and attentive. I sized him up as maybe being a decade older than me. Large of frame, with an equally large head, and a bulbous nose that sat upon fair skin, I guessed he was Irish. Wearing a white shirt, blue jeans, and a pair of worn cowboy boots, he looked as though he had just come in off the range. I had stopped in to get a drink at Jitz’s Tavern while running errands on my day off. With only a few small tables and a tiny stage, this was the type of place where an intrepid young man with a guitar and a new song would show up hoping to launch a career. It was a student bar that catered to the university crowd. This out-of-place yahoo was not someone I expected to see on that midsummer’s day in Mapleton, New York. Slowly swirling a straw in my drink, I took a sip, relishing the raucous sight before me. I was relaxed that day, but my mind
snapped to attention when I noticed an enormous picture of a snake mounted on the wall behind Ryan Moran and the two jostling women. Curving in and out, this large, hand painted relief mural occupied most of the top portion of the wall. Its dark color contrasted sharply against the pale wall casting a surreal, undulating effect upon the boisterous scene before me. After a long day of running about in the July heat, it was quite a refreshing spectacle to stumble upon. What a sight to behold, I laughed to myself. Finally, after a fresh round of debauchery, he released his arms from around the women’s waists as they ran off and left him sitting alone. I got up, approached his table, and asked, “Can I join you?” He put his hand out and gestured for me to sit. I still remember the cautious look on his face behind that Cheshire-cat smile. I saw it many more times in the following decades, and now, I understand why it was there. I extended my hand across the table, “My name’s Ira.” He reached out, tight lipped and careful, and shook my hand introducing himself, “Ryan.” To break the ice, I asked, “How the hell did you do that?” We both broke into full-throated laughter, as raucous as when he had been jostling the two women on his lap. Then, Ryan leaned back in his chair, his face issuing a more genuine smile, and he said, modestly, “Oh … that was nothing.” “Well, other than bouncing women on your lap, what kind of work do you do in town?” I asked. “I’m a small-business planner,” he explained, pulling out his business card and handing it to me. I read out loud the large, bold letters at the top of the card that stated, “MALTA BUSINESS PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT COMPANY.” Then, silently, I read the smaller print underneath: “Ryan Moran, Senior Partner.” “Malta…?” I puzzled, to myself. “Malta…?” I repeated, quietly. Suddenly, it dawned on me. “Oh! I get it!” I exclaimed, with a smile. I had discerned its double meaning—a meaning known only to those who had read the book. “You want to buy eggs in Malta for seven cents each and sell them for five cents each, and still make a profit—right?”
Control Switch On with Ryan Moran
Ryan nodded. “That’s like in Heller’s Catch 22.” “Yes,” he confirmed, chuckling at the insider joke regarding the craziness of war and business, “that’s right.” His eyes narrowed as he looked at me, as if assessing me. “Say … you’re pretty smart,” he noted. “Nah,” I said. “Someone once told me that I put my foot into so many buckets of shit that now I’ve just learned to take it out faster, and that makes me look smart.” Ryan laughed, as the analogy tickled his mind, and then, he leaned forward and asked, “What do you do?” “Oh, I’m a pharmacist at Mapleton Community Hospital, but I’m still considering medical school,” I replied, with some pep in my voice. “Medical school?” He looked at me inquisitively. “Why do you want to go to medical school?” “To help people,” I responded, perhaps sounding too glib. His blue-gray eyes stared directly at me beneath arched eyebrows. “What makes you think that you have to go to medical school in order to help people?” he challenged. I was at a loss for words as he held me in his gaze. Then, with a smug “Huh…,” and a knowing nod of his head, he smiled as if to emphasize the point, as if to seal it in my mind. He slowly stood up; still looking into my eyes, then began to turn away. I felt stunned and dazed, as though something had hit me—I could not immediately process the revealing simplicity of his words. His words went beyond sheer logic as they challenged the rote social dogma that one must become a physician in order to help others. Ryan’s words challenged my mental status quo. It felt as though some form of mental dart had been thrown deep into my psyche and could not be dislodged. Still not being able to answer, I caught his attention with an upward nod of my head, toward the painting of the snake behind him. Ryan turned to look at it, and then he turned back to me and said, “I guess we met under the snake.” “Yes,” I said, finally finding some words, “under the snake.”
Then, Ryan Moran turned and walked out the door. What makes you think that you have to go to medical school to in order to help people? Ryan’s words had been short and simple, yet there was something about the way that he had asked me the question that made it stick in my mind. Anyone could have asked me that same question, but Ryan’s words had a weight and momentum to them that left an indelible mark. The Japanese have the word Umami that refers to a fifth taste, a meaty form of savoriness. Likewise, Ryan’s question had an uncanny texture to it that I had not experienced before. Since meeting Ryan Moran, I became curious to know who he was. I sensed a power and clarity to his mind unlike the common fare one usually encounters. Little did I know I had met a master of his craft. Why we met on that day, I do not know. Perhaps it was some great synchronous event, or maybe it was just happenstance. Then again, maybe it was due to the alignment of our stars, as vaguely predicted by a forgotten county-fair palm reader long ago, in my distant past. Whichever it was, it did not matter. The snake had sealed our fate together and forever changed our lives, forging an indelible bond between us. In the East, the snake is a symbol of the uncoiling spiritual energy at the base of the spine, and in the West it is a symbol of the temptation to eat the forbidden fruit of knowledge—somewhere intermingled within these two existed the truth. Later, in hard times, we would laugh together reminding each other, “Well, we did meet under the snake.” I went about my usual business of working, studying, and tinkering with my Psi-control Switch idea, but I always kept an eye out for Ryan. Anytime I went to the downtown area, I would check the bars looking for him. One evening, several weeks later, my perseverance paid off. I had a sketch of the Psi-control device in a leather briefcase, hoping to show it to a friend of mine who usually frequented an upscale bar named La Champagne. I didn’t see my friend inside the bar, so I stepped outside to a back porch area and discovered Ryan sitting at some tables with a group of other men.
Control Switch On with Ryan Moran
The men were his age or older, and he acknowledged me with a nod of his head. I approached the table and asked if I could join them. One of the older men said, “Sure.” So, I pulled up a chair and quietly listened, sitting across from Ryan. I quickly ascertained that the others present were professors from the university’s School of Psychology. They were discussing the politics of the department, bantering about various names, and occasionally laughing. I was introduced by one of them to a man who sat between Ryan and me, and was told that he had just turned forty that day. His friends teased him, calling him a dinosaur. He took a sip from his drink and, with sad eyes, merely nodded his head in my direction. Obviously, he was not taking the news of his birthday very well. Because they were each a good decade older than me, and because I did not really know them or the context of their conversation, I sat back in my chair and relaxed. Soon, growing oblivious to their bantering and laughing, I entered a meditative state with my eyes open—something that I could now do relatively easily. This is when something very odd occurred. I felt the light inside my heart being drawn into the heart space of the sad man who was lamenting his fortieth birthday. This was certainly unusual, and it seemed unearthly as the dark space within his heart pulled the light from me. Although, by now, I’d had many experiences regarding meditational light, I had never had this one before—not one of having the light drawn from my heart and into another’s heart. My consciousness was merging inside someone else’s body, as strange as it may seem. I relaxed back into the chair and let the flow of light take place. The more the light went into him, the more I noticed that his mood changed. Soon, he was smiling and jovially reentered the conversation. Then, he started to laugh out loud as the light flooded in, and I could feel his joy. Surprisingly, he suddenly rose from the table and, with a smile still on his face, announced that it was time for him to leave. The others soon followed, paying their tabs and leaving Ryan and me sitting alone. “Howdy! What’s in the briefcase”? Ryan asked, with an inquisitive smile.
“It’s a plan for a Psi-control Switch,” I said, coming out of my meditative state. “It’s a switch that you can turn on mentally, you know … just by thinking about it.” “Oh,” he said, now with a bit of a sour expression. “I’ll show it to you if you like,” I suggested, eager to explain it to anyone who would listen. “Okay,” he replied, rather disinterestedly, “but let’s go sit at the bar.” We walked inside La Champagne’s and I noticed that Ryan was wearing blue jeans and cowboy boots again. His clothes seemed out of place at this upscale establishment of slacks and ties. For a moment, I had my doubts that this bimbo-jostling cowboy could appreciate the complexity of my work; I was hoping for a more nuanced and intellectual conversation regarding my project. Discussions of the stock market were more my style rather than discussions of live stock. His looks were deceiving, because, by all outward appearances, he seemed to be a rancher who strayed into town by mistake, but this was really just a projection of my own limited mind, as I would later realize. His usual greeting of howdy and his cowboy boots symbolized his inner feelings of strength and rugged individualism, and had little to do with his level of sophistication. We sat on bar stools in front of a large mirror with brass trim flanked on both sides by liquor bottles. Ryan asked the barkeep for a large iced tea, and I ordered a Coke. Then, Ryan pulled out a pack of Pall Mall Reds from his top shirt pocket, put a cigarette to his lips, and lit it. With a long drag and squinting of his eyes, he exhaled and blew the smoke audibly towards the mirror in front of us. Turning toward me, he asked, “So, you have this switch?” “Yes,” I said, fumbling to open the briefcase. I pulled the document that I wanted out of the briefcase and placed it on top of the bar. Showing Ryan the diagram of the device, and flipping through various pages of the document, I began to explain inner workings of the Psi-control Switch. At various points he would say, “What do you mean?” or “How do you know?” prodding me to explain the switch in even greater detail. The more I
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talked, the more he smoked, until he turned toward the mirror again and with an extra loud, audible exhale he blew the smoke toward it. The gesture seemed to punctuate the end of his cross-examination. Without turning back to look at me, he said, dryly, “So what?” “So what?!” I responded, in an agitated voice. “Don’t you understand what this means?” He ignored me and continued to stare into the mirror for what seemed like an eternity. I was on the edge of my bar stool … waiting for some cogent reply. Finally, he turned back toward me and stated, in a very matterof-fact manner, “I don’t think it will work, but I can do the switch project for you.” “You can?” I asked, with surprise. “Yes,” he replied. I thought about it for a bit, feeling very skeptical, and then I offered, “If that is true, then I will pay you whatever it takes to get the project done—as long as there is a payout for me at the end.” “Are you sure?” he asked, with a squint of his eyes and a hard straight face, as if to seal the deal. “Yes, I’m sure,” I answered. He nodded his head a few times as a final confirmation, took a last puff, and extinguished the cigarette roughly in an ashtray as though to dismiss the issue. “Look,” he said, while standing up and pulling up his jeans, “I’ve got to catch a bus in the morning to Quinndale.” “Quinndale?!” I was caught off guard. “What the hell is in Quinndale?” I asked, anticipating that my chance to do the project was about to slip away. “I want to look at some apple and pear orchards,” he replied, coolly. Then, with a pause and a grimace, he added, “Besides, it’s time to leave this little burg of a town.” As he turned to leave, I said, “Look, can you at least witness this document? I need to have that done before I bring it to a patent attorney.” He stared at me somewhat incredulously, and with a look of annoyance upon his face, he picked up a pen from the bar and
signed his name to the bottom. Turning toward me again, he said, as though he already knew the outcome, “Good luck with that attorney.” With that, Ryan Moran walked out the door, cowboy boots and all. I thought that would be the last time that I would ever see him, not realizing that our lives had already become irrevocably entangled. “That sure is one different cowboy,” I said, to myself.
CHAPTER EIGHT: THE DEVICE
“You see, all we have to do— “ I would venture to guess that I was not the first to have an idea such as the Psi-control Switch. Surely, in the great vat of time, the concept was fermenting and bubbling through the minds of men merely waiting to be uncorked. With a “pop!” I poured that sparkling idea out and let it bubble across my mind. Mmm! Tasty, I thought, as I swirled it about my psychic palate. It was intoxicating, a vintage boon for all mankind. But still, I had to bottle it up and sell the idea to others. I remembered that Jay D. Abrams was a man of business, when I first decided to pay him a visit. Why I particularly chose him as a potential patent attorney, I do not recall. Looking around his office, I did not see much except for a large table, some oversized chairs, filing cabinets, and the customary law degree hanging on the wall behind his desk. Sterile and clean, just the way I like my law, I thought, as I entered his office. My hope in meeting with Jay D. Abrams was that I would be more likely to get some corporate, government, or even private funding if I had a substantial level of legal legitimacy and protection. He was about fifteen years my elder, and after exchanging the usual social pleasantries, I got down to the business of explaining the sketch for an enzymatic switch. “Jay, you and I both know that we can speed up a chemical reaction by using an enzyme as a catalyst.” “That’s right,” he said. “So, here in this diagram, in this generalized example, I have chemical reactant ‘A’ and chemical reactant ‘B’ being bonded together by an enzyme to produce a new chemical compound ‘A-B.’” “Uh-huh,” Jay followed along.
I continued to explain the diagram on the paper before us, “And we also know that we can measure the increased rate at which this new chemical ‘A-B’ is being formed by this enzymatic catalyst, correct?” “Yes,” Jay responded, matter-of-factly. I continued, “Then we can have this increase in product ‘A-B’ perform work by using a delta switch to, say, turn on a light, or do whatever.” I pointed this out to him on the diagram. “Sure, sure, that will work,” he agreed, following along. “Now, what I want to do that is different, is to use psi, an aspect of parapsychology to make the enzymatic catalyst work even faster. You know, a psychokinetic mind-over-matter catalyst enhancer to increase the product ‘A-B’ and switch on the light sooner.” I watched as his eyes blinked several times in rapid succession. “You see, all we have to do—” “Whoa! Whoa!” Jay interrupted abruptly. “I can’t present to the patent office a psychic catalyst enhancer to secure a patent for you!” “Why not?” I asked, showing my naiveté. “This is crazy! Besides, there’s no precedent for this psychic catalyst, that’s why. What’s this psychic psi energy anyway?” he asked, with a furrowed brow. “Well,” I started in, “it’s not really an energy like you’re used to. It doesn’t fall off with the inverse square law, and you can’t shield it to stop it. Think of it as the operative entity behind ESP and psycho kinesis.” He stared at my document with perplexed confusion, and then looked back at me with an equally puzzled expression. Finally, leaning back into his chair, he said, “Listen, I don’t want to take your money for this.” Crestfallen, yet determined, I frowned and simply continued to stare at him. Suddenly, he sprang up from his chair, briskly walked over to the file cabinet, and pulled open the top drawer. “This is what I do,” he said, as he pulled out some of the files and began to read off the titles of his most recent projects. He rambled on, uttering the words “electromagnetic,” “power conversion,” “mechanical transducer,”
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and the like. Then, he spread the files fanlike out in front of me across his desk. I picked one up and thumbed through its contents, not wanting to hurt his feelings. Looking at him across the file-strewn desk, I said, “Yes, I know … but this is different.” “I still can’t do it,” he insisted, as he scooped up the files and started to place them back into the file cabinet. With his back toward me, I suggested, “If I make a working model, would that help?” I saw his spine stiffen as though this was some sort of incongruous statement that defied the laws of reason. Closing the file drawer, he returned to his desk chair and asked, “A working model? Ah … sure … sure. It’s your money.” With that, Patent Pending Application Serial Number: A-887226 was filed on 02-01-1981. Luckily, lady justice is blindfolded. Her role is to balance the legal scale to ensure that justice is meted out fairly. Had she looked that day, she would have blushed, seeing another hand—that of a dogmatic Newtonian thought process—had already tipped the legal scale against me. The trip back to Mapleton was mentally arduous. I considered the enormous costs and effort necessary to make a working model of the Psi-control Switch based upon an enzymatic reaction. That is when I thought of using temperature, instead, to make the device much simpler. If I could change the temperature of a sensitive thermometer mentally from its baseline temperature, then I could implement that change to accomplish work, such as turning on a light. With that hot idea—no pun intended—fresh in my mind, I drove directly across town to see my scientific-minded friend, Julio. The night before my visit to the patent attorney, I had already told Julio about my idea to use an enzyme to create a Psi-control Switch. It was my hope that he would be more receptive to helping me now that I had a more manageable experiment involving temperature gradients. Julio was a bit of a prodigy—educated in biology, chemistry, and physics—and was enrolled in a masters program at the local university. We were of a similar age, and
whereas Julio voluntarily served in Vietnam before college, I was fortunate enough to have missed that call to duty. During a national lottery to choose which men of my age were to be sent to war, I received a high number and was automatically excluded from the draft. Aside from chasing after women together, we were drinking buddies, and when drunk, he would tell me his war stories. Tales about his friends in the CIA and their involvement with the Hmong, an Asian ethnic group from the mountainous regions of Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand fascinated me. He had witnessed many savage and cruel situations. I would listen intently, always wondering how I would have fared had I been forced to go. Julio was indeed not only exceptionally bright, but he was also amazingly tough. I knocked on his door and greeted him with a smile, “Hey, sweet cheeks.” “Hey, sugar buns, how ya doing?” he replied. As I entered his living room, I noticed that he held a football helmet under his arm which struck me as odd. “Say, Julio, what’s the helmet for?” He returned a sly smile. “You’ll see,” he hinted, as he placed the helmet on his head and started to adjust the chin straps. “Julio, I need you to do something for me,” I began.“What?” he asked casually, as he struggled with the strap. “I want you to run an experiment for me. You know, like the one that I told you about the other night. But instead of using an enzyme, I need the experiment done using temperature.” “Oh,” he replied, with a deadpan expression. He was most likely recalling my unusual idea and had hoped it would have vanished by now. “Let me finish this first,” he said, as he went to his couch and from underneath it pulled out a set of nunchaku sticks. Upon seeing the two solid sticks of wood that were connected at their ends by a foot-long piece of chain, I remembered that he was a highly ranked fighter in Tae Kwon Do. He struck a pose in the center of the living room and remained motionless with one piece of the apparatus tucked under one arm and the other piece of it held in his free hand. Slowly, he started a ritualized martial art routine, throwing one wooden stick outward
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from his body and then quickly drawing it back into a new position only to thrust it outward again. He began to pick up speed as he repeated these movements in quick succession. Soon, he was whirling the device about his head until it whizzed like a buzz saw. Then, with a flip of his wrist, it snapped out again to hit the imaginary enemy. I was amazed by the precision and quickness of his moves. Now it was obvious why he wore the helmet. After several minutes of these amazing movements, with a thump of the wooden sticks against his body, he resumed the position from which he started ending the display. “Wow!” I exclaimed, as he took off the helmet. “That was fantastic!” “Yeah,” he replied, somewhat out of breath. “I have to keep up with my weapons training to keep my Black Belt,” he explained. Then, with a grin, he said “For you, Ira, I will do it. I’ll run the experiment.” “You will?!” I was elated! “Yeah, but I’m letting you know now that it won’t work,” Julio warned. “All right!” I shouted, and hugged him like a brother. I was ecstatic! The first documented psychic accounts of any kind that I knew of dated back to the Mahabharata, an ancient Indian text with literary elements originating in 400 BCE. This epic Sanskrit poem described how warring armies hurled psychic balls of fire at each other. Imagine that, I chuckled to myself; it only took a couple thousand plus years for mankind just to flip on a psychic switch.
CHAPTER NINE: MAUREEN
“Holy Cow! What was that all about?” I entered the dark Intravenous Preparations room that adjoined the hospital pharmacy and stood still for a few moments to savor the pulsing light around me. Blue-white light rippled from my body with a vibrating shimmer, diffusing throughout the room. As if emanating from a great pump set in motion, the light flowed with my every breath. In and out, I could feel it surge from within my heart. No, this heart—the subtle heart—is not like the physical heart. A spiritual aspirant can actually walk about in this sacred space of the subtle heart as I have done, roaming its vast corridors. A lofty place, it is cavernous and filled with a white mist that clings to your feet like a fog as you walk about. One is at first awed by the seemingly endless expanse of this inner temple, with its many-faceted, vaulted ceilings. Astonishment overtakes the mind upon finding great light forms at its epicenter. Though crystalline, solid, and triangular shaped, these glowing light towers are also made of light—light emanating from light. Wider at the bottom and tapering toward the top, they ascend above you, extending upward twenty feet or more. Not all are vertical, as the mind neatly wants, as some go off at unusual tangents. Like a giant, crystal garden, the light-form is comprised of red, blue, green, and yellow hues packed within a clear outer shell. This luminescent inner cathedral is a great self-sustaining apparatus that moves the light within the body to every cell and beyond. It is as sublime as it is intricate in its architectural design. Pure and unblemished, this is the inner heart of the physical heart—the inner heart of the soul. This is who you are. I flipped on the room light, and the shimmering merged with the electric light, seeming to disappear. Before me was the laminar
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flow hood, a carefully enclosed, sterile lab bench that functioned by blowing HEPA-filtered air in a laminar flow toward the user so that airborne contaminants such as bacteria were trapped by the filter and did not contaminate our intravenous solutions as we added electrolytes or antibiotics. It was a sterile, gray environment made even more drab by the gray color of the hood. I turned on the light switch to the hood and began to work. Dry work … like toast without butter or jam, I thought to myself. With a bit of a sigh, I chose the appropriate solutions in the larger bags and attached the patients’ labels. Then, with a syringe in one hand and a vial in the other, I added the allotted amount of electrolyte as prescribed. One solution bag after another, this humdrum task went on seemingly forever. My technician, Dan, arrived, and without a word, he joined me in the work. Thin, handsome, and perhaps a few years younger than me, his relaxed manner made him easy to work around. He prepared smaller bags with antibiotics that I would later check for accuracy. Having done this many times together, we were soon lost in our thoughts and the monotony of the work. Probably an hour or more went by when Dan grumbled in a low voice, “Stop it.” “Stop what?” I asked, glancing in his direction. He didn’t respond or look up from his work as he proceeded to stack the bags, one after another. I went back to my work, repeating the process in front of me. “Stop it!” Dan said, again, a short time later, as though he was annoyed. “Stop what?” I asked, looking at him incredulously for some clue to this uncharacteristic, out-of-left-field remark. He looked at me quizzically, in an uneasy fashion. “I don’t know,” he said, meekly. With a few blinks of his eyes, he added, “I just want you to stop it.” We both stared at each other in disbelief. It was an uncomfortable moment and I did not know what he was talking about. “I’m going to get the orders,” I finally told him, hoping to relieve the tension. Then I turned and left the room.
It felt good to be out of the stifling confinement of the pharmacy environment. I was making my rounds, walking down the hallways to the different wings of the hospital to pick up the new physician orders. This was my favorite part of the job—socializing with my friends. It made me happy. Perhaps I would get to flirt with one of the nurses, or someone would tell a dirty joke. Maybe there was a birthday party in the lab or a potluck down at X-ray. This was certainly more fun than filling bags under the hood. I felt alive, as though the hospital was my personal playground. It was on this day, while making my rounds, that I first met Maureen. She was walking down the hallway in the opposite direction, wearing a white coat and a stethoscope draped around her neck. Her light brown hair caught my eye. “Hi, what’s your name?” I asked, as we both stopped in the hall to chat. “Maureen,” she answered, with a smile. “I’m Ira,” I smiled back. “I work in the pharmacy.” I couldn’t help but notice her warm eyes, an intriguing blend of green and gray. “Are you busy?” I asked. “Kind of, right now,” she said. “Well, I’m going to take my break at seven tonight, in the cafeteria … Would you care to join me?” “Okay,” she answered easily, an upbeat lilt to her voice conveying that she was interested. “Great, I’ll see you then.” We both smiled and broke off to go our separate ways. I completed my rounds and returned to the pharmacy’s Intravenous Preparations room to find Dan still working under the hood. I joined him and started to check the work he had just finished. “I just met someone really nice in the hallway,” I said, pulling a stool up to the hood to sit down. “Oh?” he replied. “What’s her name?” “Maureen,” I said. “Maureen,” he echoed, trying to place the name. “I don’t think I know her,” he concluded. “Neither do I,” I said, “but I’m hoping to get to know her”.
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We were both caught up in the flow of the work when he turned to me and said, yet again, “Will you please stop it?” I turned to him, feeling somewhat annoyed. “What do you mean, ‘Stop it.’ Stop what?! ” With a puzzled contortion on his face he hesitated, and then ventured, in a sheepish voice, “It’s like … there’s something … some energy … coming out of you.” “Huh?” I replied. Then it dawned on me what was happening—Dan was sensing the light that had seemed to be flowing out of me. I let out an amused laugh and said, “You know, Dan, you really need to learn how to meditate.” “Really?” he replied. “Yes, really,” I said, emphatically. A few days later, after I taught Dan how to meditate, there was a little more light under the hood. A short time later, at nearly seven o’clock, I sat and waited for Maureen at one of the back tables in the cafeteria where we could be alone. As I waited, I reflected on how I had recently returned from living in an ashram in upstate New York while on personal leave from the hospital pharmacy. At the ashram, I had been a celibate— not in the way that most people think of celibacy, as rote abstinence, but in a more transcendent way of being above it all, physically and mentally. How strange it is to be hit upon by the sexual energy of anyone when one is celibate. Like a grand insider joke that only I knew and the other person did not, I would laugh to myself at their attempts to attract me. It was amusing to watch this biological dance. It tickled my mind to see the showy display while being detached and immune from it all. Tonight, however, with Maureen’s sexual energy added to the mix, it would be different. My monk-like celibate immunity was beginning to fade. Maureen arrived at nearly seven and sat down with a smile, asking, “How are you?” “Fine,” I said. “Can I get you something?” “No, thanks. I only have a few minutes before I have to be back at work,” she informed me.
“Oh,” I said, feeling somewhat unnerved by the time constraint. “What department do you work in?” “Respiratory,” she replied, pointing to a small badge on her coat sleeve. “Hey, that’s great.” I perked up. “That’s just down the hall from the pharmacy.” Then, as if a flood gate had opened, I looked deep into her eyes and said, even to my surprise, “You know, I would really like to make love to you tonight.” We were both caught off guard. Her gray-green eyes searched mine before she glanced down for just a moment. Looking back up at me and smiling, she responded, “Well … ah … okay.” “Really?!” I asked, in utter disbelief. “Uh huh,” she nodded, still smiling. “Wow! That’s great!” “What time do you get off work?” I asked. “Nine tonight,” she replied. “Hmmm …” I ventured, hoping that this wouldn’t ruin the moment, or my chances, “I don’t get off until midnight.” “That’s okay. Here’s my address,” she said, as she wrote it down on a piece of paper and placed it into my hand. “I’ll leave the front door open. Take the stairs to the second floor, and I’ll be in the room to the left because my children will be sleeping in the other room.” Still smiling, she got up and left as I sat there thinking to myself, Holy Cow! What was that all about? At about half past midnight, I pulled up in front of Maureen’s condominium. As I approached the front door, I half wondered if she would really be waiting up for me, or if she had changed her mind. Turning the knob, I found the door was unlocked, so I went in and found the stairs. At the top of the stairs, I noticed the door on the left was slightly ajar. I gave it a light knock and entered the room, closing the door behind me. The bedroom was dark, with only a dim bit of light entering through the bedroom window. The window provided just enough light for me to see Maureen sit up on the bed and pull the sheets about her.
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“Hi,” she whispered, in a soft voice. “Hi,” I replied, quietly, as my eyes began to adjust to the dim light. “How are you?” Suddenly, before she could respond, a strong bolt of spiritual light entered the room from above me, rushed down my spine, and nearly pushed me to my knees. I did not have time to react as my eyes rolled back into their sockets, and I swallowed my tongue. I could not see anything in front of me with my eyes rolled back, but I could hear Maureen screaming over and over, “Oh, my God! Oh, my God! What are you doing?! Oh, God! What are you doing?!” The event did not last long, and when I came out of it, I saw her sitting up trembling with a look of abject fear upon her face. Deeply concerned for upsetting her, I went over to her and sat on the edge of the bed. “It’s okay,” I told her, as I gently stroked her trembling head. “What was that? What on earth happened to you?!” she asked, still trembling. Before answering, I continued to stroke her head until she calmed down a bit. “What did you see?” I asked. Maureen hesitated for a moment, and then she blurted out, “I saw all this light! And…and it came from your stomach. It was so bright; I could see everything in the room!” Her eyes were wide with fright, and she started to shake again. “It’s okay. It’s okay,” I said, over and over, my arm fast around her to calm her down. Lying down on the bed next to her, I held her close until she began to relax. We lay there together for some time in the quiet darkness, her trembling subsiding and her breathing growing more calm, when I ventured to give her a warm, tender kiss. Maureen responded in kind. Kisses and caresses quickly escalated until, soon, we were in the joyous throws of an ecstatic, passionate sex embrace … when—to my complete and utter surprise—I heard her sobbing. I looked at Maureen in the dim room light and saw tears streaming from her warm gray-green eyes. “Are you okay?” I asked, with concern.
“Yes!” she nodded, smiling through her tears. “I feel wonderful!” It was then that I realized my spiritual light had entered into her, and she was having a spiritual awakening. The descent of grace and the receivership of this wondrous light under any circumstance is a truly amazing gift—to share Maureen’s awakening with her, at this particular moment, was an experience beyond anything I could have ever anticipated.
CHAPTER TEN: MERGING
“Come on in! It’s great!” Slowly, over the following months, Maureen and I began to genuinely bond as we spent more time together. She started to meditate and initiated other spiritual practices, beginning her godly ascent at a breathtaking rate. What a joy it was to share these experiences and practices with her as she unfolded her inner divinity. At work, we would meet for breaks, and after sharing our worldly experiences, we would slip away to the small hospital chapel for prayer and meditation. Long walks in the parks, lunches together, and sharing a spiritual community of like-minded people started to bring us closer. Over time, I could see the transformation upon her face as it became more relaxed and doe-eyed, giving her a particular look of contentment. I, however, was a different story. Although I had the spiritual component, I did not have the moral foundation on which to build and nurture it. I had my own agendas. Past travels had not taken me down the road of morality. Or, if they did, I would tend to ignore it, brushing it aside. Little did I realize that although I was “heavenly bound” and imbued with spiritual light, I was no earthly good in other respects. This was how my first serious relationship—my relationship with Maureen—developed, by finding out that I would not be able to hold onto the spiritual light, let alone Maureen, if I did not build more of an earthly foundation. I had to take a hard look at myself, examine my worldly flaws and character defects (of which there were many). Next, I would have to do the hard work necessary to rebuild a moral and ethical base, and a new way of being. It was time for me to grow up, to realize that the world was not just about me. Maureen’s help would prove to be instrumental, a catalyst in my transformation.
Some of the women I knew before Maureen were more like feral cats compared to her domestication. Others were intelligent and sophisticated, yet I would not step into their snares of commitment and relationships. At this point in my life, I was still like a tomcat perusing the back alleys. When luck would have it, some mom cat with kittens would put out a bowl of cream to lure me in to spend the night. But at first light, I was always gone. Maureen had her work cut out for her. She had some sculpting to do with me, and initially it was difficult. Once, a few weeks after our first meeting, I slept with another woman who was in our prayer and meditation group. After seeing the two of us together at the next group session, Maureen intuitively sensed I had done more than just talk with the woman, and she asked me if this was true. I was honest with her and told her yes. Although I had not made any commitments to Maureen, I could see the raw, emotional pain upon her face. It hurt me to see her so troubled, and I soon came to realize that most of what comprised a relationship was unseen or even unspoken. I made my amends to her—in both actions and heartfelt words—and was able to make whole again what was nearly lost. I promised myself that I would never do something like that again. This became a turning point for me, an epiphany if you will. And so, we grew back and forth in a seesaw fashion—she becoming more established in the light, and I becoming more grounded and committed to her. Soon, I was staying the night, and eventually, I was lingering until the next morning. Maureen had two young children whom I came to love and adore. As we talked in bed, I began to learn more about her past and the pain of her divorce. I watched as the aftermath of the divorce continued to play out in what I referred to as the “cold war.” A car would pull up outside her front door on the weekends. He would step out and wait. The children would be dressed and ready, and Maureen would gently place her hands upon their backs in emotional support as she escorted them down to the end of the walkway, a virtual no-man’s-land. The sidewalk served as a line in the sand where she would go no further and he would not cross. After
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exchanging some forced pleasantries, she would release the two children to the other side. Standing at the curb and waving their final goodbyes, they would be seated in the car by their father and whisked away for their allotted time. When we were alone, Maureen would tell me of the love, hope, and aspirations that she had for her children; whereupon, I would caress her cheek to help the pain go away. To cheer her, I would tell her a funny story or something silly to make her laugh. With a kiss and a caress, we would spend time together, idling the hours away. It was a few weeks after first meeting Maureen, on a sunny summer morning, when I noticed Ryan standing in front of the local book store. I pulled my car up to the curb and shouted, “Ryan! Hey, Ryan!” He strolled over to the passenger side of the car, leaned over, and said through the open window, “Howdy.” “How you doing?” I asked. “Arrh—,” he grumbled. “Not that good … I don’t feel that well.” That is when I noticed that his face was puffy with an oily sheen to it and the top of his shirt was stained brown. “Oh,” I said, in a somber tone. And then, with a little more perk, I offered, “Say, I’m going over to Rose Park. Do you wanna go?” “I don’t know,” he said, in a rather lackluster fashion. “Come on,” I encouraged, to cheer him up. “It’s nice over there.” “Well, okay,” he said, and got into the front seat of the car. I drove the short distance to the park while we chatted. Our conversation was a bit strained, and I could tell that he was not feeling well. After a pause, I asked, “I thought that you went to live in Quinndale.” “I did, but things didn’t work out,” he replied. “I took the bus to come back here a few days ago.” “Oh,” I said, in a knowing way. It was obvious that he had run into some problems. “Yeah—,” he continued, “I left my things here in some boxes at this guy’s garage. I went there yesterday to get them, but he said he threw them out because he didn’t think I was coming back.”
“Christ!” I responded. “That’s not right.” “Yeah—,” he growled. “He threw out some books and personal letters of mine. That’s what really pisses me off the most.” “That idiot,” I responded, as we reached the park entrance. We walked to the swimming area where a stream was dammed up in the summertime to make a large, fresh water pool. It was a beautiful section of the park and one of my favorites. On warm summer nights, I used to go there with a girlfriend to skinny-dip, and float under the stars and the moon. Magical and enchanting, the water had a way of bringing people together. Ryan pulled out a cigarette and started smoking next to a large shade tree that stood at the water’s edge. I looked around, and not seeing many people around, I stripped off my clothes and dove in. How refreshing it was. Rising to the surface, I began to swim about, enjoying this morning’s simple pleasure. Then my attention came back to Ryan. He just stood there, leaning against the tree, taking another long drag on his cigarette. “Come on in!” I called out to him, as I splashed about, “It’s great!” “Nah,” he said, with a sour voice, “I don’t feel that good.” “If you come in, it will make you feel better,” I suggested, approaching the edge of the pool. Ryan sauntered down the slope of lawn to the pool’s edge. “Look,” he said, “you don’t understand.” “Understand what?” I asked, looking up at him. His cigarette was finished, and his hands were stuffed in the front pockets of his jeans. With his shoulders slumped down and hunched slightly forward, he looked at me and said, “I’m an alcoholic.” “Oh—,” I said, taking a while to digest the news. Finally, I asked, “Do you have someplace to stay?” “Maybe … I’m not sure,” he replied. “You can stay at my place for a while,” I invited. “It’s very small, but I can make some room.” “You sure?” he asked, quietly, without the self-assurance and bravado that he had displayed on previous occasions. “Sure, I’m sure,” I said, as I hopped out of the pool. I dried off
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as best I could, put my clothes back on, and then we walked back to the car. I lived in a converted garage attached to a house on Sunview Avenue. With a bed, one closet, and a phone-booth of a bathroom, it was small but livable. For some reason the builders added a much smaller room at the other end of the garage with a door separating the two areas. I explained the layout to Ryan as I drove. “Can I smoke in the car?” he asked. “Yes, that’s okay,” I answered. He lit a cigarette, took a drag, and blew the smoke out through the open window. “I don’t need much,” he said, “just one meal a day, a pack of cigarettes and a roof over my head.” “Okay,” I replied. We got to the house, and I showed him the room. I was worried that his frame was too tall for the small mattress on the floor that, nonetheless, seemed to fill up the entire space. I gave him my extra pillow and found a light blanket in case it got cold at night. He took off his clothes down to his shorts. Finally, lying down on the tiny mattress, he said, “Thanks, Ira,” and began to doze off. Later that afternoon, before going to work, I knocked on the door and found him sound asleep. I pulled out a twenty dollar bill and placed it underneath his wallet on the windowsill. Quietly, I closed the door and went to work. I did not know it at that time, but that one act of kindness would later reverberate throughout the halls of power at the top of the world for years to come. Months later, Ryan let me read a handwritten letter that a woman, Erika, had sent to him long before we met. Erika was Ryan’s past lover, and she now ran his corporations—and so, the world. He had kept the letter in his wallet so that it would not get lost. In it, she wrote about his need to recover from alcoholism. Knowing his life experience, she wrote that he would have to learn to trust again—and that someone whom he could trust would indeed come into his life.
CHAPTER ELEVEN: SOMETHING MOST PECULIAR
“Well…, we must have different data bases, mustn’t we?” You can learn a lot about a person by living with them. Initially, Ryan did not seem much different from anyone you might meet during the course of a normal day. He put his pants on one leg at a time and shaved daily while looking in the mirror. Furthermore, he was neat, clean, courteous, and very grateful for his tiny room. Quite often, Ryan expressed to me how free he felt in this small space, without having a lot of responsibilities. The weight of the world was now off his shoulders. His revelation to me that he was an alcoholic caused no problems. He went to his Alcoholics Anonymous meetings on a regular basis, taking great interest in them. There was very little out of the ordinary. Perhaps the only thing that really stood out as being different was the time it took Ryan to get up in the mornings. Whereas I woke up, jumped into the shower, and was on my way, he had a different ritual. Upon waking he would smoke a cigarette while mixing a large pitcher of instant iced tea. Sitting back down on the mattress, he would then slowly drink the tea while gazing out into space. Sometimes, this would go on for hours on end. I would not disturb him while going about my own business—having my morning shower, dressing for work, eating breakfast, and sometimes sitting in meditation. Eventually his stomach would distend over his shorts from all the tea. Finally, as if something had ended and a master switch had been thrown, he would get up to start his day. Clarity would come back into his eyes. I had a half-sized refrigerator in my room and kept a small grill on its top. For lunch, I would make Ryan some grilled vegetarian delights. Initially, he ate this just as a social grace, not wanting to
Control Switch On with Ryan Moran
hurt my feelings. I soon learned that his gastronomic senses leaned more toward a traditional, meaty fare. No culinary gravitas here— just plain and simple. I began to stock these types of nonvegetarian items realizing he would be happier and feel more at home. Even though our gastronomic tastes differed, we grew to share similar goals and pleasures in life. Ryan was determined to quit smoking, and I was resolved to lose weight. We endlessly teased each other on these matters. Although we would place bets on our outcomes, neither side ever won. Stalemate was the rule for the day; our afflictions remained. Ryan puffing his cigarette, and me stopping for culinary treats, we were soon out and about, walking around town together. On most occasions he wore his cowboy attire, but sometimes he would slip into something more casual— shorts, sneakers, and a pullover being his style. We would hang out together browsing at the bookstore and getting an ice cream afterwards. Our favorite spot was still La Champagne bar. With its dark wood floors, green ferns, and gold trim, it was stylish, light and airy, and attracted a well-heeled clientele. Due to his age, Ryan, now in his late thirties, ran with an older crowd of professionals. My friends were younger twenty-somethings, and they were more of a “mellow earth” variety. Soon, we became known for palling around together, so much so that, sometimes, when our two crowds would intermingle, people would ask, “Where’s your partner?” “Brothers,” “twins,” “partners”—however people would note it, there was this inextricable bond that had formed between us. Over time, I came to learn that Ryan was known around town as a drunk, and a particularly nasty one at that. I was told to be careful of him by those who had witnessed his inebriated state. They gave testimony to his anger and ill-natured belligerence when he was “on the sauce,” saying, “It’s the curse of the Irish.” Although I had never seen him drink alcohol, others told me privately that they knew him well and to watch out for him. At times, particularly with a cigarette in his mouth, he could be quite loquacious, talking about almost anything. People would cluster in a small circle about him, fascinated by his tales. Ryan’s stories about flying for the airlines, military adventures, and foreign business deals were all mixed with
Something Most Peculiar
the right amount of hubris and suspense to hold their attention. Jobless, homeless, and without a car, his talk on such a grand scale seemed out of place. Mapleton was just a little town, and eyebrows were raised. Even Ryan’s AA friends told me they were wary and suspicious. If someone were to raise an objection to one of his stories, he would merely look them in the eyes and deflect the issue by saying, “Well…, we must have different data bases, mustn’t we?” And then, he would continue on. With caution as my guide, I kept an eye out for trouble. I had told Maureen about Ryan from the beginning. I described how he had now come back from Quinndale and needed a place to stay while he recovered from his drinking. She was supportive of this, especially since I would be spending more time at her house. Do not misunderstand—things were not always smooth with Ryan, and there were many rough spots along the way. One of these rough spots occurred early on. Maureen had thrown a pot luck party at her house for some of her friends and staff in the respiratory department. I asked if I could bring Ryan along to introduce him to her at the party. She said that would be fine. Ryan, however, did not fit in well, especially not with this much younger crowd. I left him to talk with Maureen for a while as I mingled with the others. Maureen caught up with me a little while later and pulled me aside. She told me very directly, not mincing words, that Ryan had just “hit on her” and that she did not appreciate it. I could tell by the stern yet violated look in her eyes that this was true, and she was quite upset. I assured her that I would speak to him later that night. Lust is the devil’s foreplay, particularly when it comes to another man’s woman. I had some strong words with Ryan that night, and he told me that he would not do it again. The hatchet was buried. Unfortunately, the relationship between him and Maureen had already soured past repair. She never trusted him again, and sadly, I was caught in the middle. Ryan also had his exceptional qualities, as evidenced by his behavior the following week. Ryan asked if he could borrow my car
Control Switch On with Ryan Moran
to go to the campus library. I gave him the keys, and he brought back a large pile of books. He carried the books into the house, struggling with their weight, stacked from his waist to his chin, and finally set them down on the bed in his room. At once, he started to read each book from cover to cover at a most incredible rate, one after another. After a few days, he returned the books to the library, brought home a new stack, and ingested them in a similar fashion. Eclectic in subject and technical in nature, he devoured each book in full and then looked for more. This was certainly unusual. I had never seen anyone read that fast before, at least not with any kind of comprehension or retention. From existential psychology to rural development and from business planning to the study of alcoholism, he sat at ease and read them all. By the time Ryan was on his third stack, I decided to test him … so I pulled a book out from the middle of the stack while he was out, read a chapter, and then returned the book to its place. Subsequently, Ryan returned and, in short fashion, finished all the books. Later, I nonchalantly asked him about the book whose chapter I had read. To my amazement, he not only knew the material but was able to relate it in a most uncanny way to the other books that he was reading. I asked him how he could read so quickly, and he told me, in a matter-of-fact way, that he had a near perfect memory for whatever he read. He could take a page, scan it, and then move on to the next. Furthermore, he was able to simultaneously deconstruct and reconstruct the material as he read so that he could relate it to other subjects that he had read about. Taking this even further, he told me that he was a generalist. I assumed that this was someone who has some cursory knowledge in multiple areas. He corrected me, saying that he was someone who had in-depth knowledge in multiple areas. This boggled my mind. I had read of some people having unusual intellectual capabilities along these lines, but I had never encountered anyone with this degree of talent. Over time, I began to put the pieces together regarding Ryan, and I ended up with, I concluded, something most extraordinary. I came to realize that the clock speed of his mind was extremely fast. Certainly, compared to my mind’s clock speed, the throughput of
Something Most Peculiar
information he could process was enormous! Furthermore, he could relate inexplicable things in the most creative ways. To his own surprise, and certainly to mine, he would have the answers to certain mathematical problems before he even started doing the calculations. I flashed back to the first time I had met him. Now, I had a glimpse as to why I originally, innately sensed that his mind was so powerful. It was indeed powerful and strikingly different from others. I once asked him what his IQ was. He just laughed and pushed the question aside, merely saying, “Very high.” Now, the ritual with the tea and the gazing into space in the mornings began to make sense. It was as if his mind needed to be booted up and put on-line. Initially, certain critical amounts of memory and processing power were needed. Algorithms, tautologies, and relational structures were referenced. Coupled or uncoupled, bound or unbound, encumbered or unencumbered, with a successive progression of integration his mind had an initial morning inertia all its own. Finally, when all was ready and brought up to speed, his mental capacity and agility were beyond impressive. On the whole, Ryan Moran was both intriguing and frightening.
CHAPTER TWELVE: THE BIG BLACK WALL
“He doesn’t have a pot to piss in….” I met Julio for lunch at the campus cafeteria. “Well, sugar pie, any news?” I asked, as we ate our sandwiches in the crowded room. “Sorry, honey pot, I got delayed,” he said, putting down his sandwich to attend to our business. “I had some doctor appointments, and it took longer than I anticipated to finish up some of the lab runs that I was doing.” “Can ya still do it? Can you still make me a Psi-control Switch using only temperature gradients?” I asked. “Oh, yeah,” he replied. “Just give me a bit more time.” “Great!” I smiled with satisfaction. After a couple more sandwich bites, I said, “Say, I’ve been hanging out with this guy, Ryan. He seems very smart and says he’s taken classes here. I’m not sure what to make of him. Do ya think you can use your contacts to get a background check on him for me?” Julio gave a knowing nod of his head and asked, “What’s his name?” “Moran,” I replied. “Ryan Moran.” That night I had a wonderful dinner with Maureen and her two children, Matt and Jenna. Afterwards, we played a game where we would invent a new toy from the old, worn-out toys that they had. Matt, now seven years old, contributed an electronic toy, and Jenna offered a crayon coloring set. Maureen pitched in as we extracted the electric motor from Matt’s toy and hooked it up to a battery and a switch. With a hot soldering iron in hand, I taught Matt and
The Big Black Wall
Jenna how to solder, sealing together the loose connections. Next, we taped a round piece of cardboard backing to the shaft of the motor and glued an equally sized, round piece of white paper onto the cardboard. With a flip of the switch the wheel rotated and the children touched their crayons to the spinning paper making circles and overlapping wave-like designs in all the colors of the rainbow. It wasn’t much, but they were excited, laughing and giggling the whole time. Matt loved the mechanical aspects, and Jenna enjoyed the artistic nature of their new toy. I loved having a sense of family. Maureen finally put the children to bed and then came down stairs into the living room. I hugged her and said, “I saw Julio, today, on campus.” “Oh?” she said. “And what did he have to say?” “He said he’s working on it, and it shouldn’t be too much longer.” “Good,” she said, smiling. Maureen knew how much the Psi-control project meant to me, but like most people, she did not really know what to make of it. Once, Maureen had met Julio at a party that she and I both attended and seemed to like him. On the other hand, I had learned to steer away from conversations about Ryan due to her misgivings about him. When I would say something about Ryan, it was usually met with a skeptic’s eye. But Julio seemed to be in Maureen’s good books. “Do you want to meditate?” I asked. “Sure,” she replied, with a nod of her head. I turned down the lights in the living room so that there was only a faint glow emanating from the kitchen. In the silence, we sat across from each other meditating for about thirty minutes. Upon coming out of my meditation, I noticed Maureen looking across at me with a joyous, blissful look upon her face. I could also see and feel large concentric rings of dense blue light encircling my body. Well-formed, and being much larger at the bottom than at the top, they moved upward, picking up speed, until they vanished just above my head. With a distinctive inner noise—a “wuhh-wuhhwuhh” sound—each ring of blue light rotated upward with another
Control Switch On with Ryan Moran
taking its place from below. Before long, I noticed that the same rings of light were emanating from Maureen’s body in the same way. Soon, the rings of light began to merge between us into much bigger, synergistic rings. Now, blended together, these larger rings of light encircled us, enveloping us together at their rapturous centers. Traveling from the floor we sat upon to above our heads, the rings of light now produced a much louder sound that emanated from the overlapping of their waves. One could feel a great pressure in the merging. Here we sat in this great crescendo of blissful unity, our two subtle hearts merged into one. Like Matt and Jenna previously that night—so delighted and enchanted by their newfound toy creating circles and waves of color—we too were enthralled by the circular light forms created about us. With the innocence and awe of children, we basked in the enchanting delight of God’s wondrous design. Without equivocation, I can truly say that I profoundly loved Maureen, and that love grew all the more deep as we sat conjoined as one within those ethereal rings of light and sound. That night, as Maureen and I lay in bed together, we talked of marriage. As I dozed off to sleep, I pondered an ancient Japanese koan—a paradoxical riddle posed by a spiritual master to aid a student’s meditations. “Two hands clap and there is one sound; what is the sound of one hand clapping?” In the physical realm, sound is produced by our mind’s interpretation of the vibrations of two objects striking one another; however, in the spiritual realm one can hear a wondrous variety of sounds as they arise spontaneously from an inner, primordial vibration. When this inner vibration merges from two spirits, becoming one, it produces a sound that is most beautifully blissful. This time the answer to the koan had a most exquisite twist—I now knew the sound of one hand clapping by two people. Several days later, I received a message to meet Julio at the campus cafeteria. He was standing near an empty table when I approached him. “Hey, baby cakes,” I greeted him. He didn’t respond, but instead he looked about nervously, and then confided, “I’ve got some information for you….”
The Big Black Wall
“What information?” I asked. I had no idea what Julio was leading into. “That guy—,” “Ryan?” I asked. “Yeah,” Julio nodded. “What about Ryan?” “I spoke to my friends at the CIA. It looks like he’s very rich,” he responded. “Rich?!” I exclaimed. “How can that be? He doesn’t have a pot to piss in. For Christ’s sake, he’s sleeping in my back room!” “I don’t know,” Julio said, “I’m just telling you what those guys from the agency told me.” I had a frown on my face as I continued to stare him in the eyes. Julio hesitated, “… There’s something else.” “What?” I asked. Julio looked down at the floor and then back up at me and said, “There’s a big black wall.” “What the hell is that?” I snapped back. “Don’t know,” he said. “Just, nobody seems to be able to get over it. They all tried but said they’ve never seen anything like it before.” With that, he simply got up and quickly left. What could make Julio act so differently? I wondered, as I watched him walk away. And what in God’s name is that big black wall?
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