[How This Book Came To Be, A Letter From Thaddeus Golas Part 6]
Considering all the euphoric expectations of the psychedelic era that turned to mush, it was amazing to me that I had managed to distill this little book. It was popular as a gift: people often wrote to me that they bought twenty, thir≠ty, or fifty copies to give away. A hippie from Santa Cruz came to Deray's house and bought five hundred copies to pass along, paying cash.
A girl told me she was sitting in the park reading it when a man came up and said, "When you've read that book, you don't need to read any of the others." I heard that a woman slept with the book under her pillow. A class in Los Angeles discussed whether the book had been written by "someone famous" under a pseudonym, but decided it wasn't because of the dedication to my father. There were hippie rumors that I was so "far out" that I had gone crazy or had returned to another plane of existence.
I took it as evidence the readers had gotten the message that no one showed up to regard me as a guru. I had written the book as a letter to friends, and I was hoping to make new and interesting friends.
But suddenly all the LSD-takers seemed to have disappeared from my life. Just as I had been one of the twelve million people in the armed forces during World War II and then rarely met a veteran afterwards, now the acidheads had vanished. The rescue of my book did not mean I entered a time of calm and that I could now savor the culmination of two decades of devoted effort. I was heart-torn over the break-up of a romance and still missed the family feeling of the psychedelic world. Joe C. was endlessly declaiming about my evil character, until people grew tired of hearing about it. I knew such gossip deliberately to drown or otherwise to die scan≠dalously: it happened at Weaver's Ranch, at Oompali, at The Farm, at Tim Leary's ranch in southern California, and elsewhere.
Even worse, when devotees submitted their will to a leader, they set the trap of instant gratification for the unwary teacherósooner or later he would be accused of moral turpitude, or go mad with one delusion or another.
I decided that teachers who claimed to have the complete answer had damned well better understand the mechanisms they were dealing with. Many gurus spoke of avoiding desire, but never noticed the seduction of becoming the object of desire.
My book was apparently a feature of the New Age movement, but I felt embarrassed at being identified with much of the nonsense being promulgated. To those who are offended, I can say only that The Lazy Man's Guide to Enlightenment is an authentic expression of space consciousness, and I am the kind of person it took to write it.
How This Book Came To Be
A Letter From Thaddeus Golas
Lazy Man's Guide to Enlightenment Contents