O is for Orange – October 6, 2009

Self importance is our greatest enemy. Think about it – what weakens us is feeling offended by the deeds and misdeeds of our fellowmen. Our self importance requires that we spend most of our lives offended by someone.
–Carlos Castaneda

O is for Orange
2.5″ x 3.5″ Watercolor & Ink

Today, I was looking at Leslie White’s wonderful Blog and I checked out an artist on her blogroll, Rog Lyngaas’. Oh my! Go see his beautiful Idaho landscapes. It’s fun to discover new artists.

Carlos Castaneda (25 December 1925 – 27 April 1998) was a Peruvian-born American author. Starting with The Teachings of Don Juan in 1968, Castaneda wrote a series of books that describe his purported training in traditional Mesoamerican shamanism. His 12 books have sold more than 8 million copies in 17 languages. The books and Castaneda, who rarely spoke in public about his work, have been controversial for many years. Supporters claim the books are either true or at least valuable works of philosophy and descriptions of practices which enable an increased awareness. Critics have tended to claim that the books are works of fiction, citing what they see as their internal contradictions and Castaneda’s description of a peyote culture that, to them, did not exist.

In his books, Castaneda narrated in first person what he claimed were his experiences under the tutelage of a Yaqui shaman named Don Juan Matus whom he met in 1960. Castaneda wrote that he was identified by Don Juan Matus as having the energetic configuration of a “nagual,” who, if the spirit chose, could become a leader of a party of seers. He also used the term “nagual” to signify that part of perception which is in the realm of the unknown yet still reachable by man, implying that, for his party of seers, Don Juan was in some way a connection to that unknown. Castaneda often referred to this unknown realm as nonordinary reality, which indicated that this realm was indeed a reality, but radically different from the ordinary reality experienced by human beings who are well engaged in everyday activities as part of their social conditioning.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. lesliepaints
    Oct 06, 2009 @ 11:15:54

    Love the quote today, Beth, and all you investigated about Casteneda. Thanks for this.There is so much out there to learn and I enjoy the snippets you bring, daily, for me to read.

    Thank-you, also, for referencing Rog. He truly has a way with painting what he sees.


    • Beth Parker
      Oct 06, 2009 @ 14:10:24

      I really enjoy doing the quote thing. I start every day deciding to be happy. I think life is a hoot! If these little quotes make even one person have a better day, I’m tickled.

      I love Rog’s art. He really puts a lot into his work. Thanks for introducing me to him, thru your blogroll.


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