Central to the knowledge that Carlos Castaneda imparted to his apprentices were the Energy Passes, short cuts to enhanced awareness.
Carlos studied with a group of seers who had a deep interest in perception and its manipulation to enhance their lives. The system they had inherited was a living one that changed with the needs of every generation. It has come to us in a modern and functional form, somewhat removed form the ritualistic and secret connotations it had held for generations.
One of the most notable features of this band of seers was their vitality elegance and prowess in dealing with the world. Carlos inherited a whole system of philosophy that described a world richer and deeper than the one that western education has given us and practices to acquire states elucidated in their teachings.
This knowledge was deeply mystical whilst being profound and pragmatic. The system was divided into two sections for the left and right body. His teachers distinguished between the two sides of man, the abstract, the left body and the linear, the right body.
Their teachings and practices were directed at these two facets of our awareness, our linear mind, the world of our everyday life and the hidden often intuited magical nature that lies behind it, a world of feeling and direct experience.
Carlos spoke of these as two attentions, the first attention, our linear daily world and the second attention the abstract unseen but intuited world, the world of our dreams. For the first attention their were practices called stalking, the name derived from similar behaviour they used to trap their food. Hunters examine the minutest behaviours and routines of their prey making their actions to trap the animal strategic and effective. This observation of our own routines and habits gives us the tools to trap our behaviour and open ourselves to new behaviour, conscious actions that befit conscious endeavour. For the second attention there were Dreaming practices. These included the Energy Passes which had been discovered in heightened awareness and systematically collected. Also utilising dreams.
These seers noted that in dreams we are much more fluid, behaviour not supported in daily reality was possible. They determined to use dreams in a pragmatic way to school and enhance awareness. To this end they mapped the dream world and developed a rich tapestry of practices to take advantage of it. Their intent was to use their individual dreams to enter into other realms, new worlds where they could find sources of knowledge of power. They were successful in their endeavours. The energy and focus they acquired in their nocturnal adventures gave them the prowess and fluidity to repeat many wonders of perception in daily life. They called this ability Dreaming Awake.
A third state of being that Carlos wrote about was inner silence a deeply meditative state where new facets of our awareness appeared. This was seen as the highest accomplishment of these seers of this lineage. Their deeds come to us in rich tales of sorcery and shamanism. For us in this modern world who have a deep interest in both knowing ourself and our environs and enhancing our perception, their practices are invaluable. These shaman seers acknowledged a conscious force that was unseen yet underlies all creation, they termed this force by its nature, Intent. A force they said that was unknowable yet directly usable by man.
Our intent is to live a full and rewarding life, to overcome our habits, that rob of us energy and divert our resources. This reclaimed energy can then be utilised to take stock of our lives, to detach ourselves from our behaviours and ascertain by examination how we spend our time and energy and whether it supports the life we dream to live.
This training of Energy Passes, Dreaming, Stalking and Inner Silence are at the heart of what we at Being Energy teach in our classes and workshops.
Carlos Castaneda is called the Godfather of the New Age, a name he disliked, though understandable, owing to the amount of people he captivated and inspired.
For his BA in Anthropology he was asked to find a native informant. His subject was Peyote.
He found a native informant a Yaqui indian named don Juan from the Sonora dessert Mexico. After his dissertation was published at the university, a publishing company seeing that the content was in tune with the spirit of the times, published what was to be a million dollar seller that is still in print today.
His doctorate submission was also published. He went on to describe his apprenticeship with his informant don Juan over thirteen best selling books. The books were a mixture of extraordinary tales and discussions with his mentor. Don Juan became the voice of wisdom for several generations of aficionados.
His apprenticeship with don Juan focussed on enhancing awareness through gathering dispersed energy and using dreams as a conduit for direction and control. The discipline to achieve this manoeuvre don Juan called the way of the warrior.
Direction and control in dreams meant that students could also take control of facets of their daily life that had once been left to chance by mastering Intent, the creative force of the universe.
The practices of the warrior's way were laid out clearly in Carlos's books as were Dreaming and another twin facet of the teachings which don Juan called Stalking. Stalking is the art of ascertaining who we are and how we act by self examination.
Towards the end of his life Carlos decided along with three female compatriots to gather a group of people together and convey to them everything they had learned between them and make it available.
He published a book about a secret facet of what he and his fellow apprentices had learned, a book called Magical Passes. This described the movements that had made up their energetic conditioning, presented in a modern generic form that was suitable for everyone regardless of levels of fitness or age.
Miles Reid was featured in photos of the movements, in the book. Under the guidance of Carlos, Miles who was a medical doctor was encouraged to become a Chinese acupuncturist and herbalist. He also taught every at every workshop.
Carlos had this dream that both Chinese and western medicine could be combined with the wisdom of the shamans of ancient Mexico to empower future generations to excel in the face of the challenges that modern life was bringing.
Being Energy is that dream made manifest, an organisation that recognises humans first and foremost as Energy Beings. Miles Reid and his partner Aerin Alexander have striven to make this work more available, relevant and functional for our 21st century needs of manifesting the life we really wish to live.
The Energy Passes, with guided visualisations, meditation and personal investigation practices along with nutrition, provide the fundamentals of the Being Energy curriculum.
Gammadian and Ena are long term students and instructors of this body of work that will transform your life on every level.
This tale is unbelievable; unbelievable to me who lived it but undeniable and true, so I have found my resolution to tell this extraordinary account of this incident from my life. I had complications with TB at the age of 30 so spent many years in a wheel chair, however by the millennium, 15 years later I had progressed to walking on sticks. I was though still in incredible pain and surges of electricity like energy would course down my leg making me scream. I became addicted to painkillers and my curtailed life. One night at a party filled with successful witty and charming people that were well disposed towards me I felt so low. It was an ideal party yet I had no energy to take part in it.
I found a room that was empty and turned on the TV. I thought about my wonderful life and how dreadful it had become, where I couldn’t even enjoy an evening with my friends. The pain and my bad humour were unbearable. I reached the lowest point of my life.
After a while I began though to think not of the bad times but of the good years the joy of friends and travel. Particularly I thought of Prem Rawat a man from Haridwar in Uttar Pradesh India whom I had met on my travels who had freely given me a meditation-like practice he called self-knowledge. I remembered how simple yet profound this knowledge was and how good it felt to practice.
It hurt me to think that I had largely stopped it. I knew in that moment that I couldn’t live any longer as I was. I swore to myself that I would practice what I had been shown every day. Although it was not always easy, I did this, and from that day every aspect of my life improved. If there were clouds in my day then I knew that the sun was behind then and the clouds would bring rain to nourish the earth and so me. My cup often half-empty was half-full and filling. A life with joy and gratitude as its base, blossoms. One day I felt really good and was thinking of starting some gentle exercise. Knowing I couldn’t join a class with my disability, I went to the bookshop to buy a book on tai chi; hoping that in the privacy of my own home I could practice and attain a level that would allow me to train under a teacher later.
In the bookshop I found a manual on tai chi and then went to explore the other books. I had always been a fan of Carlos Castaneda’s writings about his magical apprenticeship in Mexico. On the shelf I found a book by him, that I hadn’t read, called The Magical Passes subtitled The Practical Wisdom of the Shamans of Ancient Mexico. The book excited me; filled with
descriptions and pictures of physical exercises it seemed to fill the gap, left by his earlier work. I left with this book and returned the tai chi book to the shelf. With little energy, in pain and debilitated from my disability it was slow work learning from the book yet it still enticed me and I started to generate a daily practice.
I had a great feeling of energy, optimism and well-being. Practicing these Energy Passes, (www.beingenergy.com) needed a fine sense of balance. I had little balance without my walking sticks. Time and time again I would fall to the floor and have to pick myself up again, yet I continued with it day after day. It was a powerful and re-vitalising process. I had been practicing daily for 6 months I was falling less, my body was stronger and I was a lot more alert.
Like every day I meditated eat breakfast and then practiced Energy Passes. By the time I finished I was tingling all over feeling exhilarated.
Sweaty from my exercise I went to the bathroom to shave and bathe. I shaved and before bathing happened to catch my eye in the reflection from a full length mirror. I felt an immediate longing, a deep sense of love and attraction and heightened concentration.
I tuned into this growing feeling of deep love for myself: In and out of a real yet dream-like state, I slipped. Feeling that something incredible was happening I renewed my attentions. My love and attention drew from the mirror another being, my energy body. For a moment I was horrified. However as the being called by my attention stepped from the mirror I engaged with and became it. I looked at my vacated body staring in the mirror. It was uncomfortable sharing a room with it so I left.
I went into the front room and practiced the Energy Passes I knew. Many more appeared spontaneously and I danced my joy and determination. Never had I felt such power and wonder in my life.I moved with no thought breath by breath soaking up the immediacy of being. A thought came to me after many hours “You have gone mad, do you really think that you have left your body in the bathroom?” With a surge of energy I banished this thought yet after sometime the nagging voice returned and I had to respond by returning to the bathroom. As I walked in I saw my body as I had left it.
My nausea returned and with the nausea fear, panic and religious thoughts of demonic possession. A calm loving voice filled me. It told me to calm myself and return to my everyday body as I no longer had the energy to sustain this non-ordinary state of being. Somehow I did return. I was back in my body, I felt drained confused and excited. I still did not know the full implications of my experience. Yet it was obvious to me that what we consider reality is only one level of perception: An outer layer dictated by our thoughts.
The next day I visited a neighbour, he offered me a beer which I refused saying with surprise, “I don’t drink alcohol.” He offered me a smoke and I made a similar reply. I was as astounded as him. I realised also that I had walked to his house without my walking sticks. After my experience I read a lot about this fascinating subject and other similar accounts and got what happened to me in context a little. I was re-vitalised, full of energy which was flowing in a way it hadn’t since childhood. I was optimistic full of appreciation, awe and joy at life.
I was no longer in pain, in fact just the opposite. I had never known it was possible to feel this good. I felt decisive and free. With no need for pain-killing medication I easily stopped using it. My doctor was surprised to see me neither dependant on walking sticks or medication. She said that it was a miracle. It has been a long time since I had this magical experience, I have continued with my practices and became a Being Energy teacher. I am deeply grateful for everything and everyone including my own effort that has made it possible.