Interview with the Instructors of the
Magical Passes

This interview is the answer of tensegrity instructors to a series of questions sent by Mexico City practitioners in October, 1999. It is probable that not all the questions reflect everyone’s concerns, but undoubtedly all the answers are for everyone. The students of Carlos Castaneda referred to this questionnaire as the first part of a series, and left the door opened to questions of practitioners everywhere.

Do you have a clear awareness, in the tonal, of the new course, or new direction that instruction of the magical passes is taking? Do you read this in infinity or how do you know?

We are navigating. The Nagual compared this to being at the front of a train, facing the oncoming time. This train is a bit different than most, because there are no tracks -we find them as we go. We read energy and follow where it is flowing today- not where it flowed yesterday. How do we know if we’re following that flow? Because when we go in that direction, it works. If it doesn’t work, we don’t go there -or we shift direction immediately.

The Nagual gave us certain guidelines. He imbued each of his apprentices with a specific facet of his knowledge; this means none of us can see the direction we are moving by ourselves; we have to work together; and yet each of us has to pull his or her own weight, and be what the nagual called energetically available, watching at the front of the train. “Be my eyes and ears!” he would tell us. Now we each have to be the eyes and ears for the others.

Infinity is the one who points out the direction to take. Following its flow is the challenge that all of us face -practitioners and instructors alike. The female students of don Juan are guiding us in this effort, as Florinda Matus did with don Juan’s four students after don Juan left.

Participating in a Tensegrity practice group is one way for practitioners to push themselves to the front of the train. We are accustomed to having a leader who gives orders. So in working together without that leader, we are entering new terrain; we are moving our assemblage points.

This is not an easy path to take. The Nagual told us that it takes guts of steel to sustain one’s purpose without a person in charge, telling us personally what to do. We are just dying to have an authority figure around, interpreting things for us, taking care of details, giving orders.

There is much longing for the presence of the witches which manifests itself in many ways, from doubts to sadness. Is there any possibility that we will see them again?

The female students of don Juan told us that anyone who wants to can meet them in the place of no pity. This doesn’t mean harshness; rather, it means no self-pity, or pity for someone else based on the idea that we are better off than they are. It also means we are standing side by side, not looking to be carried or rescued, but looking in the same direction: toward infinity.

They said it is our time; they can only guide us -we are the ones who have to act.

As a unified body of practitioners, we are entering the unknown. Each of us has to decide whether they want do this -to run joyfully after the bird of freedom, with no guarantees, no assurances. For us, that’s something exquisite.

The proposal of Infinity, is it a concept, or a real possibility?

Several of us asked the Nagual this question at one time or another. “Don’t take my word for it,” he said. “Don’t journey only in your mind. Find out for yourself!”

We know that the task of celibacy is individual, but–are there magical passes or breaths that would facilitate the change of direction when the hormones become overwhelming?

The Nagual told us that there is no way to get rid of our longing, nor could we leave behind socialization. We move around it, and also, we use it to our advantage. Why not work together as male and female to enhance our awareness, rather than to keep ourselves locked into rigid roles and behaviors that keep us from dreaming?
It’s much more challenging to interact with each other without trying to control each other, or possess each other, than it is to follow the track of courtship. It takes much more imagination.

Seers recommend celibacy for young practitioners because we are trained to approach sexuality from the standpoint of an investor. “I’ll do this for you if you do that for me.” Or “I love you madly and forever until you look at someone else.” Carlos Castaneda considered this to be a travesty—to merge the best of your energy with another being as an investment? No, he said. For seers, the only way to have a sexual union with another being was from the position of total affection, without expectations. This takes guts of steel, he said, and is not for baby warriors.

In the sexual act, there are lines of energy -lines of affection- that are created between the two partners. Unless the two are free of personal expectations, these lines become broken, and cause turmoil in the body, especially for the female. Add two or three sexual partners, or even more, and you have a real problem here.

All the magical passes help us to be more aware of the nature of our longing -which according to seers, is really the longing for the energy body- the energetic counterpart of the physical body. The magical passes, and impeccable actions, help us to entice the energy body.

Are there any specific strategies to maintain the focus during the recapitulation. How do we break our resistance to recapitulate?

In recapitulating, we are lightening our burden, letting go of our personal history, and our habits, rendering our assemblage points fluid. How could this be boring, or burdensome? Because we are approaching the task with our old opinions, which lead us to believe we find reward only through deep suffering. The Nagual suggested that we could just as easily enjoy the recapitulation.

If we approach the recapitulation as a magical passa seers’ technique for enhancing awareness, found in the second attention, our resistance breaks down. Don Juan’s four students have told us that we resist recapitulating because our view of past events is clouded by fear, or deep sadness, or personal disgust, or enchantment with the self. The detached view of the second attention cancels out these feelings, making it possible for us to see patterns in our behavior and interactions we weren’t aware of.

Anytime we were telling a story from our lives and we ended up weeping with shame or pity, or puffing up with pride, then the Nagual let us know: you haven’t really recapitulated that event. Otherwise, we would not feel such personal attachment. He told us that by recapitulating, we turn our life events into stories. Those stories may be funny, or embarrassing, or deeply moving, or just boring -what they have in common is that they have lost their personal sting.

The Nagual told us that a navigator uses everything around him that can help him to see his or her life from this detached view-films, interactions, memories, foods, daydreams. Each of them, he said is like a snapshot that can help us to see our own patterns. What moved you in that film? What did someone else notice that you missed? What bothered you in the conversation you had at lunch today? These are definite signals to guide us in seeing our own actions. Before we judge the director of the movie, or a co-worker, or a friend, we have the discipline to take a look at ourselves and see what we are doing.

To cultivate the dreaming attention, is it required to maintain the attention between the eyebrows -there are coincidences to certain geographic areas. How do you deal with this?

You can place the attention on a number of areas of the body, such as the calves, for example. We explore this avenue in a series of magical passes called Mapping the Body.

On a more basic level, the attention of daily life has a direct affect on the dreaming attention. If we are worried about what our boss thinks of us, or whether she likes him better than me, we can’t even find a cup in our dreams, much less enter into full-fledged dreaming.

On the other hand, if we live artistically in our daily lives, then we will find ourselves dreaming artistically.

The practice of Tensegrity has facilitated perceiving with our bodies. But sometimes the linear mind interrupts the flow. How can we reestablish that flow?

The Nagual told us that this is the vice of the bored conception: to doubt. He told us that one of the simplest cures for our bored-conception state was to breathe -to allow the body to connect with the air outside it and the new perceptions that it brings in. “You have to hone the body,” he said, “so that the intent to perceive can prevail over the intent to doubt.”

He said there’s no way to doubt and to dream at the same time. He said that we never get rid of doubt. We just put it on the back burner, so to speak, so it’s not in charge.

We would like a clarification of how to approach the magical passes for crossing phyla. Are these about converting oneself into an insect? Some of us understood them as having to do with the alignment of perception and the way in which insects -on aligning perception as a whole- work as a group, like an organism, one single being, in order to survive, and that gives them other possibilities of evolution.

What a delightful question. The magical passes that involve energetically crossing phyla are practiced to bring us the new view that comes with a new position of the assemblage point. The truth is, we don’t know all the implications of what these magical passes bring. We are finding out as we practice them. The Nagual warned us about too much speculation about the effects of the magical passes. He said that we loved to try to make things familiar, like tourists bringing all the comforts of home into the jungle. Much more valuable than speculation, he said, was direct experience. Just do the magical passes, he told us, and find out where they take you.

The magical passes of Olinda in a form called The Amber-Blue Dust of Infinity, bring us a strange awareness of a moth-like being that seers refer to as the guardian of the second attention, an awareness that requires a new syntax to describe. The Nagual told us, “You may notice a new line of thought that comes through as you practice this series. You might find yourselves making sentences that are unlike any you’ve formulated before.”

We could find ourselves communicating with each other, as a body of practitioners, in a different syntax. Insects do have a syntax, and for seers, human beings haven’t done that well using their own. We don’t need to abandon what we’ve learned, but why not learn some others, and be fluent in many languages?

Many practitioners have asked us what we mean by “unified body of practitioners,” or “group dream.” Whoever is available energetically is in the dream that the Nagual had for us, in which we are sending signals of awareness to each other, finding our way together. These signals can be sent from anywhere -we don’t need geographic proximity to hear each other. We just need discipline: the art of feeling awe.

© Copyright Fractalum Magazine
Publication Date: April 2000