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Amazing Grace

Amazing Grace – Acknowledgements and Introduction

  Acknowledgments   Thanks to Kristine Rosemary for “ironing” the text. Any reader who finds the book readable and enjoyable ought to thank Kristine also. Thanks to Donna for hauling Kristine and me out of the pit of grammatical and copy errors. Thanks to Jonathan Metcalfe for the beautiful artwork on the cover. Thanks to […]

Chapter One: The Face at The Window

I am awake and I am cold. In the first few moments of awareness, this is all I know.  Waves of shudders pass through me, and in a single spasm of deep shock, I open my eyes.  I don’t know where I am or who I am.  The surroundings are unfamiliar and something is terribly […]

Chapter Two: The Lost Boys and Girls

Families are somewhat like planetary systems. In a certain terrain and atmosphere, the members develop and evolve based on the resources available. It seems to me, after all these years, that it’s impossible to understand the deep inner nature of anyone without understanding these elements of the family “planet”. My parents were divorced when I […]

Chapter Three: Another Window Opens on Strange Connections

Now I wonder if this mysterious event in Orlando that my Grandmother would not even talk about on her deathbed drove Mother to take up with a new protector.  As soon as Cecil entered our lives, we moved.  First to a different house in Orlando, and very soon after to Jacksonville. I didn’t see my […]

Chapter Four: Dead Babies and Iron Skillets

Grandpa decided to arrange for Tom and me to stay with Aunt and Uncle, my mother’s brother and his wife, in Sarasota.  In this way, Mother could keep working on legal problems and we would be “safe”. My aunt put us back in school, I contracted chicken pox, and we lived a normal life.  It […]

Chapter Five: Jane Eyre Redux

Mother’s new religious zeal was fine with me.  I loved Sunday school, the stories the teacher told with illustrations on the felt board, and singing, and just the whole feeling.  I was reading the Bible (in bits and pieces), and God was taking care of us now for sure! Because of my grandmother’s constant presence […]

Chapter Six: Violets and Bulls in the Graveyard

After my long illness, deep changes in my metabolism emerged and the beginning of life-long health issues started to manifest in full force.  For the next three decades, I seldom felt completely well again.  This is typical for people with auto-immune disorders, as I have since learned.  Nowadays, I control it completely with diet, eliminating […]

Chapter Seven: Trapezes and Dog Days

Needless to say, I was ecstatic to go home at the end of the term.  And I was confident my grandfather would keep his promise to see that we didn’t have to return.  But I wasn’t prepared for all the changes in the year we were away.  A year is a long time when it’s […]

Chapter Eight: The Farm

Everyone in the family called it The Farm with capital letters.  An old Florida Cracker style farmhouse already a century old when my grandparents bought it in the Great Depression of the 1930s, it came with eleven acres, a tidal spring or “bayhead,” and half a dozen huge grafted pecan trees of several varieties. The […]

Chapter Nine: The Stand Off

The Farm gave me the best environment to ponder the nature of Evil and how it came to exist.  Yes, I had been taught that Man sinned in Eden because Eve was tempted and passed the temptation along to Adam.  But this simple story did not answer the question of so great an evil as […]

Chapter Ten: Shrinks and Rebels or Being Fifteen is an Awkward State

Rumors about aliens and flying saucers flooded the school the year I went into eighth grade.  First there was a story about a man who lived up on Highway 50 near Weeki Wachee. John Reeves claimed he’d been taken up in a space ship by aliens landing in the woods behind his house.  He built a […]

Chapter Eleven: Graveyards, Psychopaths, Psychics, and Meetings on the Bridge

My mother, always mindful of beauty and appearances, decided to do something about my weight. She believed that how I looked reflected on her, and she disliked being accompanied everywhere by a chubby child.  So she told the pediatrician to prescribe a diet for me.  Well, he did better than that: he prescribed diet pills!  […]

Chapter Twelve: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Keith Laumer had retired from the diplomatic corps to write, and had achieved some success and a reputation as a prolific science fiction novelist.  Keith was pleased to have sold movie rights to a book adapted for the screen with a starring role for Michael Caine. (“The Peeper”, based on the book “Deadfall”.) But he […]

Chapter Thirteen: Oysters on the Half Shell

I ordered Keith’s telephone and went back to the Farm. Late September nights were cool and the days warm, sunny and dry.  The house had been closed for almost a year.  My brother was in the Navy and had married.  Mother had remarried and gone to the East Coast to live.  Now she and her […]

Chapter Fourteen: Pearls in the Oyster

Shortly after my introduction into the field of hypnosis, I went to dinner with Grant on Christmas Eve 1973.  A few days earlier, he had announced that his divorce would soon be final.  He was monstrously depressed over it.  At dinner, he seemed distraught that his little boy didn’t realize their last Christmas in a […]

Chapter Fifteen: Blitzkrieg

After my grandfather’s death, family dynamics shifted dramatically.  For years my grandfather had managed my mother, knowing something was significantly wrong with her approach to life.  He could limit the damage she did to others by supervising her.  But all that was changed now. When I was nearly 15, and we’d been living at the […]

Chapter Sixteen: Dances with Sunlight

What do you do when you wish to die and the Universe obviously has other plans?  Argue? Several days later I woke up in the hospital.  My mother was there.  I realized, to my horror, that by my own hand I had confirmed every negative opinion she had ever pronounced about me and my flawed […]

Chapter Seventeen: Mirror! Mirror! On the Wall…

It’s amazing how our emotions can drive our thinking.  Grant was my soul mate and I’d never be happy with anyone else.  That’s how I interpreted the reading by Lama Sing through Al Miner.  But we’d both apparently screwed up in some way.  Until Grant unburdened his karmic debt, there was no hope for our […]

Chapter Eighteen: The Wolf and the Dove

The bizarre synchronicity of Eva’s appearance, for the second time, on the scene of my imminent demise is, of course, a curious matter.  I am reminded of Lama Sing’s description of her as “your ally in this life”. When Eva saw the hose in the tailpipe of the car, she told me there must be […]

Chapter Nineteen: The World’s Most Beautiful Baby

Nowadays sexual harassment on the job is grounds for legal action and could bring financial advantage to the woman who wants early retirement.  But when I worked for Doc such options were still on the horizon.  The incident with the doctor made me wonder again just exactly what was “wrong” with me. I was friendly […]

Chapter Twenty: Minks and Turkey Basters

Within a few weeks of the baby’s arrival, Mother and Grandmother decided to go back to the Farm.  I didn’t want to go, because I couldn’t stand to be around Mother’s husband.  Buck was such a whiner and sniveler that within ten minutes of being in his presence, I felt near mindless rage at his […]

Chapter Twenty-one: Parties, Mosquitoes, Hives, Hypnosis and Fishing Boats

The main authority in my life was the district manager of the state offices, a Burt Reynolds type in looks and attitude.  Charles was a Florida native like me and he had the same last name (I’ve given him a different first name for privacy).  Some of my co-workers suspected we were related, but he […]

Chapter Twenty-two: The Devil in the Details

Larry began teaching me about boats and the commercial fishing business.  After I quit my job, we were together all day inspecting the boat, a worn out old tub that ought to have been sunk, and getting equipment either repaired or replaced.  We rapidly developed a good working relationship.  I admired his physical prowess and […]

Chapter Twenty-three: In The Forest

A Sufi saying: “Religion is like a garment.  One has to know how it fits before one can take it off”.  I was now proposing to myself that I should put it on as an adult.  I knew that it was necessary to do it fully and completely, and to do this I needed to […]

Chapter Twenty-four: The Poisoned Apple

Mother was quite unhappy that I should shift my loyalties to Larry.  And he was equally determined for his demands to be served through me.  That is to say, my mother wasn’t going to tell him what to do since, at this point, it was obvious that she didn’t have a clue what she was […]

Chapter Twenty-five: The Boat Ride to Damascus

By now the reader knows that I cannot write all of this in strictly chronological format since there are always several threads weaving through a person’s life and for the sake of clarity, I’m separating those threads both thematically and chronologically.  Most of what is in this chapter was running along at the same time […]

Chapter Twenty-six: Another Face at the Window

Again, another thread of events that were running parallel with the overview given in chapter 24. My eldest daughter awakened in the night screaming in terror so intense she was almost completely unable to describe to us what was frightening her.  Soothing and rocking (she was only in kindergarten) calmed her down sufficiently to get […]

Chapter Twenty-seven: The Noah Syndrome or The Lost Love

As I described in overview in chapter 24,  my mother was going off like a loose cannon, supported by church members engaged by her sympathy ploys.  My grandmother’s cancer had metastasized after staying in remission for 11 years.  My brother had betrayed me, taken in by Mother, even against his own grandmother.  My cousin and […]

Chapter Twenty-eight: The Ark in Montana

When I think about the “Boat Ride to Damascus,” it is exactly a metaphor for my life as a born again Christian.  The moment of truth, of course, was symbolized by the trap of the anchor that nearly pulled me to a watery grave.  And moving out of that spiritual-psychological framework was exactly as problematical […]

Chapter Twenty-nine: The Dream

No sooner did we have a plan and a shared goal that one would think could bring two people close together, something began to act on Larry in a strange and self-destructive way.  First, he was fired from work. Then, every day, he managed to run into someone who needed his help.  For ten or […]

Chapter Thirty: A Knight in Armor

I called Eva.  I wanted to tell her about my dream of the former life and my conviction that I’d committed suicide.  After I finished, Eva became was very quiet for a long moment. “Yes, I already knew that,” she said finally. “How?” “When Lama Sing did the reading for you, years ago, the last […]

Chapter Thirty-one: The Cleft in the Rock

In 1988 I decided that a garden would help me to exercise and strengthen my muscles, ease pain and assist a gradual return to full mobility.  It was still difficult to walk.  I had to put pants on sitting down because I couldn’t lift my feet high enough;  I couldn’t exert enough control to insert […]

Chapter Thirty-two: Moving to Montana

There were five named tropical storms in September after Eva and I made the trip to North Carolina in August.  Tropical storm Keith, the last storm of the 1988 hurricane season, moved up through the Gulf of Mexico before crossing central Florida right over our heads. Keith brought more than wind and rain: the storm […]

Chapter Thirty-three: Synchronicity City

We moved in to the new house on my birthday on February 12th.  Although the interior still needed cosmetic improvements, it was like moving into a palace after five years in the shack-becoming-a-house in the woods.  Sandra came on moving day, bringing a feast and a cake.  We all celebrated our return to the “real […]

Chapter Thirty-four: That’s Hollywood!

As mentioned, when Frank arrived at my door, I was surprised at his appearance.  His deep baritone voice on the phone gave the impression of a large, portly – and most especially, very masculine – man.  Frank was very tall and gangly, and most definitely gave an almost immediate impression of androgynous character.  He reminded […]

Chapter Thirty-five: The Crane Dance

According to the latest researches in cognitive science,  we do what we do to survive because we have little choice in the matter. Gurdjieff was right and modern day psychological studies repeatedly demonstrate that he was a pioneer in the matter. We are programmed, conditioned,  set up to be targets in some celestial side-show.  I […]

Chapter Thirty-six: Hailing the Universe

We come at last to the crux of the matter: the Cassiopaean Experiment.  How, in Heaven’s name, did it come about, considering that it was initiated by two such “damaged” individuals as Frank and me?  More importantly, what was the end result for both of us.  The reader will discover that this, like everything else, […]

Chapter Thirty-seven: Missing Child, Missing Time

As our experiment in channeling proceeded, we discussed the many possible ways that a “true higher source” might be identified.  We both thought that a higher source, by virtue of greater and more inclusive Cosmic Perspective, would be able to make absolutely stunning “predictions” that would “hit the mark” every time.  But, in a short […]

Chapter Thirty-eight: Flying Black Boomerangs

Not long after I had been released from my sickbed and the inundation of UFO books, I went to the supermarket one morning, and there was a stack of pink flyers with “flea-market” type ads.  I was looking for some additional computer equipment, so I picked one up and tucked it in my pocket.  When […]

Chapter Thirty-nine: Flying Black Boomerangs Redux

At this point, again, health issues moved to the forefront.  All my life, it seemed when I recovered by sheer force of will from one assault, another would arrive seemingly out of nowhere. I was most definitely looking at this as a symbol of my inner state, and constantly made adjustments in my relationships with […]

Chapter Forty: Aliens, Demons and Vampires

In January of 1994, the Frank & Dane Debacle (already described) unfolded and I understood why Frank had been so desperately interested in using the board to predict lottery numbers.  After his father bailed him out of trouble, Frank was so humble and contrite, declaring he’d learned the most important lesson of his life, I […]

Chapter Forty-one: Aunt Clara

The very day after my little “talk with God,” a letter arrived in my mother’s mail and she called excitedly to tell me.  A local organization for retired people offered a course in home health nursing.  To my mother, it sounded too good to be true.  All supplies, uniforms, and transportation were provided without cost. […]

Chapter Forty-two: Green Slime

A few weeks went by after the “Trudy affair, “we continued with our Reiki nights, and things were better. But there was still an undercurrent of dis-ease.  I did my best to put as much love and light around the situation as I could, and keep myself in a “bubble” of light so all my […]

Chapter Forty-three: Hungry Aliens, Stinky Demons, and the Return of Keith

All through the early months of 1994 while the dramas of the Reiki crowd were playing out, we had continued our weekly sittings.  Sam had stopped attending – ostensibly because of his contretemps with Frank – but I think that the real reason was that none of the lottery numbers won him any money. This […]

Chapter Forty-four: Comets and Cassiopaeans

Keith never dropped in to visit again.  My best guess, based on my working hypothesis, was that he was “in the light.” We had finally passed through all the lower level entities of the earthbound astral planes and were dealing directly with those who were not in need of spirit release or similar assistance.  I […]