High Times Greats: Carlos Castaneda

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From here on, established and presumptive facts will be assigned to “Castaneda,” nonfacts to “Carlos.” Castaneda is the writer of books, born Carlos Arana in Peru. In the next book, we find don Juan and Carlos on a hilltop, when don Juan tells Carlos to run over and get some leaves from a certain bush. To begin with, Carlos Castaneda must not be mistaken for Margaret Mead, J. R. R. Tolkien. And crows haunting the Irvine campus are taken for don Juan and Carlos Castaneda. One night Carlos and don Juan were sitting in don Juan’s room chatting in the dark, when don Juan asked Carlos what he used the darkness for when he was in Los Angeles.

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For the April, 1977 issue, High Times excerpted Richard de Mille’s 1976 book, Castaneda’s Journey: The Power and the Allegory. In conjunction with the December 25th birthday of Carlos Castaneda (1925-1998), we’re republishing it below.

Carlos Castaneda has written four best sellers about his 12-year apprenticeship in the Sonoran desert under a Yaqui Indian sorcerer named don Juan Matus. There his head turned into a crow and flew away, he became brother to the coyote and he learned to erase his personal history.

That erasure makes sifting rumors a major...

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