#2137 - Michelle Dowd

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Michelle Dowd

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Michelle Dowd is the author of "Forager: Field Notes on Surviving a Family Cult," revealing her life growing up on an isolated mountain within an apocalyptic cult, and how she found her way out by gleaning strength from the wilderness. https://www.michelledowd.org/https://twitter.com/Michelledowd2

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So thanks for coming in, Michelle Thanks Joe for having me My pleasure I love your man cave Oh thank you I really do It's awesome Yeah it's fun So when I heard your story I was like this sounds completely insane and Just to fill people in just explain what happened Well, I was born into a cult a high-control group that I didn't know to call a cult because you know I was more than a child. Yeah, that was my whole experience. My grandfather started in 1931. So my mother was also born into the Colton in the 1940s. My dad was, let's just say he was 12. When he first met my grandfather, who would later become his father-in-law, and my grandfather became his father figure. So my mom was married off to this man who was a follower of her father and I am the second child of their union. Wow. And where did all this take place? So this took place that he originally started it near LA in Pasadena, which most people know because of the Rose Praid and other things like that. When he first started it, my understanding is he was a boy scout leader. And he was an orphan. He had come from Oklahoma when he was a young man. And the boy scout didn't allow him to have as much control as he wanted to have of the boys. Oh, boy. So, yeah, which is a lot of control. So he left the boy scouts and he took the boys with him and some of the boys from his original troop in 1931, stayed with him, passed his death. One of the first boys took over after him in the late 1980s. Wow. Or the early 1980s, actually. Yeah, so he was really good at getting followers. [2:01] What was his background? Like what did he do before he did all this? Nothing. Nothing. He was completely, I don't think he graduated from high school. I don't know that for sure. He lied about everything. And he said he had a PhD from Stanford later when he got, wasn't until I got to college and then I noticed this. I'm not even 100% sure he knew how to read, to be quiet on us. Really? He came from a family where he was the only child that lived out of his particular mother, who was married to a man, it was a second marriage, and his first wife had died, and then he had a bunch of kids or whatever. So he had a bunch of half siblings, but no full siblings, and apparently, you know, this could be lore too. They kind of excommunicated him. He compared himself to Joseph, you know, like, of the multi-colored clothing and everything. So he was like put down a well, he liked to say, and he escaped, and he came to LA in the height of, no, the silent films, things like that. He said he was in silent films. [3:00] There's no chance that is true, but he said he was, and he got some sort of probably church education when he got here and He declared everyone he was the prophet of God He was gonna live 500 years and he was going to lead the army of God in the second coming Wow That's your grandpa that's my grandpa God wow Yeah, I can't pick your grandpa It's cleanly is. Oh my God. Wow. Yeah. It was a tampink your grandpa. No, you can't. No. But it was a male organization for a very long time. It was all men and it wasn't in tell. All men? All men. It was all men. It was from 1931 to 1966 when my mom married my father. No one was allowed to get married there.. They were all presumably celibate and it was just men. Oh my God. Presumably. Presumably. It's like prison. They gave for this day. Absolutely. So I was raised by a bunch of older men who had never been with a woman. Oh my God. [4:00] See how well that ended. But he didn't want his daughter to be an old maid. And she was getting older. She was 24 by the time he married her off to my dad. And at that point, I think the women, like his wife said, you know, it was his fourth child. They had three boys first. And so this was his first daughter. And he decided that since the world had not yet ended, that maybe he should marry her off before she either became an old maid or maybe a loose woman. Who knows? When did he think the world's gonna end? Well he used to prophesy in 1977. Once more fire. Sure. Love some fire. I'll keep this over here if you want. It's easy to use. Yeah. Where I come from this is a grave sin by the way.. Oh, women smoking a cigar, anyone? Anyone smoking a cigar? Anyone? Are you allowed to drink coffee? Yes. What was the rules? Well, coffee is interesting because I don't know that they set out loud. You could drink coffee, but I don't remember it being forbidden. The body is the temple of God and that there's no marking your body with ink, no piercing your ear. [5:06] I know. I have a lot of ink myself, I wasn't sure if I should show it up. And no piercing in the ear. Right, no piercing in the ear. What about makeup? No makeup when I was young. They also unusually cut off women's hair, at least during the era that I was there. Now there was a- Cut her off like a boys here. Yes, my mom had this X-Same haircut since she got married and tell she died the exact same haircut she died in 2022 Yeah, so just a lot of the femininity was Considered a temptation to the boys and since it was supposed to be they thought it was better to You know burn and held into lust after a woman and they quoted some stuff from Paul in the apostles and the epistles and that basically you could get married as opposed to lust. And so eventually in the 1960s, they allowed their first wedding, which is 35 years. Think about that, 35 years of jealousy. [6:01] About all, yeah, just bunch of dudes. Wow. It is just absolutely fascinating to me how some people develop these groups and how they do it and like what the characteristics of the leaders are. It's so weird. There's a place out here called the One World Theater. And it used to be owned by a cult that there's a documentary on called Holy Hell. And this guy had started a cult in Los Angeles. He was a yoga teacher, but he was also a gay porn star and a hypnotist. It's a nice compliment. It's great compliment for a documentary. The documentary's incredible. You watch the documentary like, what the hell? And he was running from the cult awareness network. So he changed his name. His original name was Jaime Gomez. He changed his name, I forget what it was. He had like two different names. So I think one was Michelle and there was another one. [7:03] So and then he came out here to Austin because right after Waco, they were kind of cracking down on cults and they were trying to find. Yeah, so they're like, we gotta go. So the cult awareness network was on to him because also family members were calling in. We lost our children, they're with this guy and he's crazy and you know, they got the people in the woods in LA. And so he moved out to Austin and had his followers build him this theater where he could dance in front of them. Yeah, and so there's- Did you dance there? It was like, he was a very handsome guy and he was very charismatic and he was like ripped. He was a yoga instructor, he had a six pack, he's beautiful man. And I think he, and he also was a kind of exotic looking. So he had this like guru thing going on, you know, and then he was also a hypnotist. So he's like really good at manipulating people's consciousness in there. And that might be a criteria for being a cold leader by the way. That car is manic. Maybe a form of hypnotist. Like you have to be able [8:03] to manipulate consciousness. Because if you, if people at least youist. You have to be able to manipulate consciousness. Because if people, at least your top leaders have to be indoctrinated. If they are not, I mean, some people call it brainwashing and call what you want, but you have to have people who worship you. Yeah. It doesn't work unless you do. Of course. I think we have a very narrow idea of what hypnotism is because of the term. I think the term you lock on the term like, oh I want to quit smoking, I'll go to a hypnotist and they sit here and they'll lock TikTok TikTok. But I think there's like states of mind-melding that happen with people where you all get sort of locked into a state of consciousness. And I think it happens in riots. I think, you know what I'm saying? Like the madness of the crowds. There's something real about that. If you've ever been in a chaotic public environment where like fights break out or something like that, there's a very strange feeling in the air that leads people to do things that they would never do before. [9:01] People that would never pick up a shopping cart and throw it through a Starbucks window. We'll do that now. It's like everybody just loses their fucking mind and I think it happens in concerts when people like jamming out together You all getting the same like mine frequency and I think a really good cult leader does that too I think they get these people and they lock them into this way of thinking and We're you know, we don't want to call it hypnotism, but I think there's a lot of states that are very similar to hypnotism in that something happens where you enter into an altered state of consciousness. That's probably accessible somehow or another, but you don't know how to get there. But then this song brings you there or this person brings you there with their talk about the impending apocalypse and we're all locked in, you know, and it gives people like a sense of belonging and purpose that you're locked into this frequency that everybody else in the room is locked into. It's very comforting. I mean, there are a lot of things about a cult that are very comforting. Yeah. I think that's the positive benefit of religion. [10:04] Absolutely. It's like this thing comforts you. And even if like some of them's gotta be wrong. Some of them gotta be wrong. Or if you have 100 different ones and they're all different gods and different people, somebody's gotta be wrong. But the one common denominator that they share is that if you do believe in these things, it seems to aid you in life. People seem to be happier, they seem to have more of a sense of purpose, they don't feel lost. Like some of the least happy people I know are atheists. And I have a joke about it where I say, you're really dumb for not believing in stupid shit. Because if you believed in stupid shit, if you believed in dumb shit, you'd be happier. That would be a smarter move. Because it's kind of true. And I think that's what's so fascinating to me about these cults is how they do it, how they lock people in. I'm going to have, I'm sure, because of your experience, you're probably seeing a few of these documentaries, right? You've probably seen. I definitely have. And you know, when I watch there being an act of the Waco one, which is not the documentary, but did you read or watch the one that came out maybe five years ago? [11:09] No, no. But they showed the children and how they didn't want to leave. And just how difficult there was a child psychologist who worked with them afterwards. And I was very interested in that because it takes a long time to undo the level of, I mean, it's one thing to have a faith, right? Like believing in, you can call it stupid shit, but whatever you believe in, it's one thing to have a faith, but to not have the ability to think for yourself and to be, that to be trained out of you. So I went to lunch a couple days ago with someone I hadn't seen since I was three and he, so a lot of fellow former field members have come out of the woodwork since we should tell her that field is the name of the group. Yes, we call ourselves the fields and one of these former members who I won't name, I hadn't seen, I didn't recognize him at all, I just hadn't seen since I was a little kid, but several of them have come out who knew my parents [12:03] and of course knew my grandfather before I was born and then maybe knew me when I was a little teeny girl and they have lots of stories. Anyway, he was on one of these things we called the trip with the capital T. And what we did on the trip, I mean, there were different things in different years but this one was in the early 1970s and he was doing all the things you do on the trip. But one thing they required, it was my father required of us at home too, is to run every morning, first thing in the morning, which you can say there's some good things about this, but you slept together in tents, and then you'd get up and you'd run, and you'd have to beat your time. And my father used to time us as a kid, so like I had to beat my time, right? Like you can't always get better. But at this point, he was 19 and he was beating the time he said in that time was in relation to the fastest runner. And so if the fastest guy was going really fast, you had to keep the same ratio of distance. So anyway, he didn't make his time. There were three guys who didn't make their time and they had to go through the SWAT [13:02] machine. So my grandpa often made boys go through the swap machine and the simple version which was done at the actual location of the field was you'd crawl through the other boys or men's legs and every boy would spank you. I know, I know. Oh my God. I know. They're little. Well, we want to get into all the things you can think about that. But there was a different version that was only done when the boys were separated from their parents. And so when they would go on these trips, my dad was their original driver. He started driving, by the time he was 18, he was driving all around the country, taking my grandfather's boys. So again, my father was not his son. He was just some dude, like, you know, joined this cult. And my father would drive these boys around and he would time them when they ran and did all those things. And so in this particular case, they did Swat Machine where you have to hold onto a fence pole and you face the fence and then all the guys come and they hit you. So they're not just spanking you but they're hitting you. And so he was getting kidney punches and all the stuff and he was saying he fell to his knees and he was almost died. He was so bruised up and he did not want anyone to know this story. [14:07] He hasn't spoken of it because he's so shamed that potentially someone might think, why didn't you fight back? Of course, I said, but you were trained. Did you train that you deserved this? And then apparently one of my uncles was really worried when it'd take him to the hospital, but couldn't or didn't because they had no insurance and this young man who's no longer a young man said that he could never tell his parents. And he never told this day, ever told his parents or anyone, he and his brother have never spoken of their time in the fields. It is like this big taboo. He got out maybe a year later, but he was, I mean, that was only one of many, many, many stories he told me, but that one just really struck me to feel ashamed of that. You know, like I, I guess for many years, I too did not tell people where I came from because you feel like you must have done something weak to be a follower. [15:02] And that's just not true. I mean if if someone gets a hold of you as a child They can program you to think almost anything especially if they're good at it Yeah, unquestionably. I mean, that's why they have child suicide bombers. Yes Yeah, I mean you can trick children and It's it's understandable though that you would think somehow or another that other people would think that it's your fault or Ignoring people would think why didn't you know why didn't you leave? You know what people that you know Never really thought about it never thought it through because that they haven't had to You know the friends I went out with who I mean I'm calling on friends now But I haven't seen them since I was a little girl They were saying I would have of course you would drink the Kool-Aid and when people use that expression, I would have been first in line, I would sign up for that. I mean, that's, we all would have, and I mean that, and I was born there and indoctrinated, and I would have completely taken anything that my grandfather or my parents told me was gonna kill me. I would have, you know, I would have felt that. Wow. And the reason you don't hear about a lot of cults by the way is because they didn't end up in flames [16:07] or mass suicide. But that doesn't mean that they didn't pray on, you know, dozens, sometimes hundreds or even thousands of people depending on the cult. I was talking to Mark Andreessen, he was explaining to me that there's still many, many active cults in California. Absolutely. And I was like, what? Like right now, like people know about him. Oh yeah, they're successful. Like there's some successful cults. Mm-hmm. Yeah, when I first went to- Is the field still around? The field's still around. I've been told it is a completely different organization and I'm not going to vouch one way or the other. They certainly don't have a charismatic leader like my grandfather once he died and his replacement was there and then once he died, I think it's become, it has not become secular. It's a very strong religious organization, but they don't have the control they used to because like when we were young, they wouldn't have social security number. There was no way to track things. And now, you know, it's hard to get away with \u2014 Yeah, yep, to to pay taxes. Yep, they do pay taxes. [17:05] And there was a sexual abuse case that was actually prosecuted. And I think after that, which I think was 2006, I think that they had to really clean up a lot of their practices. When I'm hearing these stories about these boys and the abuse, that's what I'm thinking about. I don't think if there's a bunch of boys and no one's allowed to get married, that's not a good recipe. No, it's not. And the particular one that got prosecuted was a young leader who was abusing 11 and 12-year-old boys sexually. I say out loud, I said this to my mom, I said mom, isn't it curious that no one's ever prosecuted anyone for what they did to girls? And I was a sexual abuse victim there, and it was something I was so ashamed of for so long. And anyway, but there's other forms of abuse that go on, I mean, there's obviously physical abuse, but there's a lot of psychological abuse. There's a lot of ways that I get inside of you that you're worthless and that you can't trust yourself. And you can't even trust yourself with your own stories. [18:02] And I have a slightly younger brother who adores you, by the way. Thomas Elsa. What's his name? His name's Michael. It's a Michael. Yeah. He, I love him to death. And he was raised, you know? We were always collectively, but we were also raised separate from each other. And my biological siblings, we all had different experiences because they don't let you bond. They don't want my sister who's just a little bit younger. She and I, we loved each other deeply, but we weren't allowed to speak to each other sometimes for weeks or months at a time. Oh my God. And they were just strongly against you forming what they would call allies. They didn't want friendships that could turn into anything that would be a little bit. Probably cool to you, but no. like anything that would form a click, they used to call it. Right, any other groups where another person could be in control. Right, or any- Or they could discuss who's in control. Yes, or any loyalty to anyone else other than the primary leader. There's a lot of ways that this, that you can indoctrinate people and make them police themselves. [19:04] Oh, yeah, that's what North Korea does. Yeah. North Korea gets everybody to rat on everybody else. Oh, yeah. That was huge where I come from. I have, I felt like it was a huge compliment. One of the former members came out of the woodworks after this and he said, you know, I knew that you would never rat us out. And I was like, man, that's so great. But I mean, it was something we were all taught so, so, so deeply. That, yeah, you, you have to, no matter if this is your brother or your sister or your mom, you have to tell on them. You have to. Because you're worse. That's what keeps everybody scared all the time. You never trust anyone. God, that's so, it's so insidious and yet also brilliant. Like, it's evil, it's evil, but it's, how did he figure out how to do it? That's it's crazy and how is he able to pull it off? That's what's always so fascinating to me, that it's not like children. With children, it just makes 100% sense. You're raised there, you think this is reality, and you think that the world outside reality [20:01] is all bunch of evil demons or whatever it is. But if you're an adult, like you're a grown adult, 34 year old man and you meet this dude at the auto repair shop and he hands you a pamphlet and the next thing you know, you're on a farm somewhere. Like how do those people? So I can't vouch to that. I will say that the unusual thing about the field is you have to join as a child. There are no adults who join. They really. the field is you have to join as a child. There are no adults who join. It's kind of like a pyramid scheme. When you're most people join when they're five or six and they are indoctrinated and then they play sports like so for example they play tackle football at age five and so they teach everyone how to you know play game but it's only the people who are really good at the game that they continue to court. I would say you could call them groom whatever but It's there's a lot more kids there than we'll ever get into the inner circles and it's a little like the mob or something like I was born in the inner circle But there are plenty of people who came out of that Colt who honestly weren't harmed by it because they got out young [21:03] So as long as you get out by the age of 12, you're probably okay, but they don't keep you unless you're really fully indoctrinated. And most of people who stay really don't have a family to go back to and they separate you from your family. And so they do more and more separation as you become a teenager by the time you're 18, you're signing a commitment for life form. Jesus. And I'm not saying that's happening now, but that was 100% happened not just during my era, but all the decades prior to me. So it's not just a cult, but it's like it's got a sort of a meritocracy built into it. Yeah, but I think a lot of cults have that. Really? I think so. Yeah. I mean, you have to kick people out that don't line up enough. Yeah. So cults in general kicked people out. In fact, they want you to believe that staying is hard and that you have to work hard to stay. I think the misconception is that they're trying to get you in. Sure, they're seducing you in some way. There's some sort of calling card, whether it's a pamphlet or something else, but we should clear. Do I have what? I know I said yoga class. Yeah, exactly. Yeah, dancing, you know. But whatever brings you in, but then after that, it's like you're the strong one, you're [22:06] the special one for choosing to stay. In this particular cult, they always would say there's 20 of you in this room, 19 of you will fall away. There's only one of you who will make it into the army of God. Geez. It's like the Navy seals of cults. It kind of is. And there is a lot of physical to ya. Yeah. I was just feeling what the best of the best. So if you are a child and you're in, I mean, how, first of all, how could anybody ever expect a child who gets indoctrinated into that to know the difference? If that's your reality and that's what you grow up with, how could you possibly know? What year are we talking about when you were like eight years old? That would have been the early late 70s. Yes, so nobody knows what the hell's going on. Oh, absolutely not. Even in the world. Exactly. The whole thing's a big foggy hay. [23:01] There's no internet. The world's, we have like one tenth of access to information that we do today And yeah, and you're also a child and you think that this is reality and parents were used to their kids being gone all the time And I think that that was not something unusual because one thing I hear For kids who went there people say well how did your parents allow that and I mean parents like they sent them off to the sports Place and then got really into it, and then at some point, there could be a teenager and didn't want to come home anymore. And I mean, they're like, well, I don't think my kids do in drugs, or I don't think that they're like in prison, so it seems like they're doing pretty well. But it also seems like, societally, there was a shift at some point in time, where what was the year where more women entered the workforce and more women started getting jobs. So that happened in the 70s. I think 1973 might have been like one of those, I mean obviously it was starting to happen in the 60s but there was a lot of women at home in the 60s. Around 1973 to 1979 you had a huge exodus of women out of the home. [24:02] The women I come from, I mean like my grandmother who had my father who joined at the scold, she was always a working woman, minimum wage working women, she didn't have more than eighth grade education. She worked because her father, excuse me, her dad's father, her husband, had been in World War II and got, you know, pretty severe PTSD or whatever, was an alcoholic and beat her. And so she ran away from him. She just had one child, which was my father. She was living in a chicken coop in area LA, just with this one son, and she was the first woman to get hired in a factory. But this was in the 1940s. So there were always women, of course, and lots of women of color who were working, but it wasn't the middle-class women who were working, but the poor women were always working. Right. I'm just thinking like latch key kids at that point back then. 70s and even 80s. Yeah, it was totally common. All my friends, we just got led out of the house and were kids. Right. You just got on the bus, went to school, walked home from school, rode the bus, hung out with your friends, nobody knew where you were. [25:01] Right. So you could have been in the Colts and your parents would have not necessarily known, right? I think I would have told them. Well. But I could have got sucked into one. That's the point. It's like everybody looks at themselves as who they are today. So if you're a 35 year old man and you're listening to this today, you're like, I wouldn't get sucked into that. That you can't say that because you're not a five year old boy. If you're a five year old boy, you don't know what the fuck is going on. You're a child. By the time you're 18, you sort of get a, yeah, especially if you're a little street wise, like, all right, some people are shady. I know what the fuck's going on. Listen to this guy's trying to rope me in. I remember there was this Christian group when I was in college that was trying to indoctrinate people and they were they were like young good looking people and there was this this beautiful Puerto Rican girl and she was always trying to get me to go to parties with her and I was like wow did I hit that jackpot like eventually I'm gonna get a date with this [26:01] girl like this is amazing you know it's I was probably 19, 20, I guess, 20, 21 maybe. And one day, she invites me to go to this retreat on the weekend. Like they have some crazy Christian retreat. And I'm like, oh my God, a retreat. Like she's not telling me it's a Christian retreat. She's just telling me it's like this fun party and this whole thing. And I said, I can't, I have plans this weekend. I go, but if you guys ever do another one of those things, that sounds like fun. And so Monday morning, or whatever the day was, I'm in school, and we're all in the cafeteria, and it was the day that Trump's airplane, the landing gear, failed to open. And so we all sit down at the lunch table and I had just seen it on the news. I said, did you see this thing on the news about the plane? It's crazy. The landing gear didn't go out. And so the plane just on the belly, the plane skid across the runway. [27:01] And there's all these crazy sparks. And I go, but nobody died. And they go, oh praise God, praise God. And I was like, what? Like what's going on here? This super hot Puerto Rican girl's like, oh praise God, they're all praise God, praise God. And I'm like, oh, and then they're just immediately click. You dummy. They were trying to get you to go to their church thing. You thought she liked you. And then they started talking to me more about God. And then I was like, oh, I got to go. I got to class. I got to get out of here. Fuck. So you didn't get that day? No, no, I avoided them. They were in my Italian class. And they were learning how to speak Italian. And I avoided them. I was like, I can't be, I can't be involved in this. Because they were all glossy. They were like, they were all believers. Not, this is not saying that God's not real, this is not saying the Christianity's not true. This is not what I'm saying. What I'm saying is you could have got those people with Scientology, you could have got those people with Mormonism, you could have got those people with the moonies, whatever. [28:01] They were just looking for a thing that they could attach themselves to and then formulate their identity based around this thing and for them it was Christianity and it was just like youthful form of Christianity where they're trying to get young people They're making it like retreats. We're gonna have we're gonna party and they were all socially odd They're all real awkward people. It was really it was very interesting though to me The person is always curious about human beings. I was really, it was very interesting though to me. The person is always curious about human beings. I was like, this is wild, like, hang around. Like, I think in high control groups, they do tend to obviously cater to the young. I mean, they think they're soliciting the young. And I want to be clear too. I'm not anti-religion. I think high control groups slash cults are a whole different experience. And yes, they use religion, but they don't teach you to have faith and to trust yourself in your faith. They teach you to follow someone else's faith. I used to have a joke about what's the difference between a cult and religion. Or a cult is created by one guy, and he knows it's bullshit. In a religion, that guy's dead. [29:01] Yeah. And all the other people, all the other people that this fucking dude 2000 years ago convinced, but some religions are really beneficial and they might in fact be based on some kind of true story. I think it's a game of telephone. That's what I think. I think if you tell me a story and I tell Jamie the story and then Jamie tells someone out in the lobby of story by the time it gets to me all the way again, it's going to be screwed up, right? Now imagine this over thousands of years of just oral tradition and then writing and lost languages like ancient Hebrew, they wrote them in Aramaic on animal skins, some of these stories like the Dead Sea Scrolls. And then they eventually translate them to Latin and to Greek and to Roman and to English and to German. Like, what? Lost in translation. Also, like what did they know? Like how much did they know? They had some ideas of like the formation of the universe, [30:00] the beginning there was light. Sound a lot like the Big Bang. Sounds a lot like if you would tell the Big Bang to your kids and your kids, you would tell to their kids, and you're gonna do this for a thousand years. At the end of it, you're gonna get some real, people are gross. They always like to like twist things around and make things, you know they add their own little spice to a story. Like if you ever have a friend who tells a story, like, hey, bro, that didn't happen that way. Like, you didn't say that. You fucking ran for cover. Like, everybody's got their own version of a story. What's that? Yeah, we all in Village. If you got oral traditions, 100% for sure, you're gonna have a lot of that, especially when you have high control groups, like your grandfather. You think about the translations too, even when the monks were translating all that and they were scribes, they were inscribing it. All of that too, there was an agenda on a lot of that. And then when we read the King James Version of the Bible, the king pronounced it to be so. So anything that was left out, there was a lot left out, right? And what was canonized because it was perhaps dangerous [31:07] to do the particular regime that he was running. And so not to say that it's not true. Yeah, imagine you get to decide. Yes, I know. You get to decide what God meant. Yeah, I think God didn't mean any of that. I mean, take this stuff out. My problem is never with religion. My problem is purely with religion. My problem is purely with human nature and what we know about humans. If there was a way that you got religion through some sort of non-human source, like if you achieved your experience through a non-human source, I would go, okay, well maybe there's a place that you can go and you could actually go meet God. There's like a portal you walk through and meet God.. But as soon as you're doing, you're letting people tell you a story. People are full of shit. They just generally, generally at least a certain percentage are full of shit. And the people that want to control people have a much higher likelihood of being full of shit. [32:03] Because they really do that correctly. Like if you want to be a president, like you got a lot. You have a much higher likelihood of being full of shit. Because they really do that correctly. Like, if you wanna be a president, like, he got a lot. He got a lot. It's like really important. So the people that are like, good at that job are generally full of shit. And so then you have a problem with the interpretation of the past, right? And you're seeing that right now in universities. Like people are trying to reinterpret certain events because of the way people feel about sociopolitical issues today. So they're trying to reinterpret history, take down statues. There's a lot of craziness that's going on today. Well, that's like a microcosm of the ancient history of human beings. It's not that God's not real. It's that people are full of shit. And so there's some, a lot of wisdom in a lot of these ancient religious texts in particular, which is really fascinating. Like how much did they know about the human experience? How much did they know about how you need to live your life in order to be harmonious with the universe? How do you like, how do you [33:01] accentuate positive experiences? How do you leave the world a little bit better than it was before you got here? And that's... Have you read the whole Bible, by the way? I did when I was a kid. I actually had Bible class in Florida. But I moved from, what I moved from San Francisco to Florida, I was 11 years old. And it was a complete polar opposite experience of the country. I lived in San Francisco with two parents who were hippies in hate ashbury. So we were in the middle of like we lived near Lombard Street. We were in the middle of like the hippie anti-war revolution of the 1960s. And then I moved to Gainesville, Florida. My stepdad was going to, he was becoming an architect. He was a computer programmer and then he switched careers, became an architect. And so he's going to a university of Florida at Gainesville. And so we were there. So now on the side of him, I'm around alligators. There's fucking alligators everywhere. [34:02] It was like, what are you people retarded? Why do you have giant monsters everywhere? This is so ridiculous. So we had alligators, super weird, swampy weather, and religion. Religion was in the schools. Like in public school, you had Bible class. And they were also paddled you. It was the first time I'd ever been hit by a teacher. They had a... I got in this fist fight with this kid and they whacked us with a paddle. Can I ask you an alligator question? So when you were in Florida in the 1970s, were you there in the late 1970s? It was, let me see. So I was in 67, I was born. So I in 73, I was in San Francisco. So 75, 76 75 76 okay did you know someone his name was Ross Allen in Florida I have no idea I was 11 well he was older like he would if he he was an alligator yeah he's an alligator wrestler he had all I got it all gone oh god oh yeah wrestler yeah life span on those fellas well I [35:04] don't know when I don't know when he died, but yeah. That doesn't seem like that would work out so well. Well, they probably didn't think them. I don't know. Even that, they're just going to break your arms off. Speaking of which, I need more fire. Oh, sorry. Grab that sucker right there and pull the top back, flip it around. The other side. Like this, this way this way this way the other way this way no the other way it's upside down Oh see this there you go now see the top uh-huh pull it sucker back like that like there yeah and then just pull it down pull it down I know I cannot believe how I hit that no it's not open you got to open the top flip that top no no look see this oh my god I know I know you got it you. I feel like it came here to learn this. Perfect. Thank you. Yeah, it's a little weird because it's all black and so it kind of blends in, especially if you're like us and your eyes are probably going. This time goes on. Like I can do it myself. There's not a chance in hell. [36:01] I could ever do one of those clasps on a bracelet, those little tiny bracelets, like them little clasps. Like if my wife tried to get me to do one of those, I'm like, I don't even know what I'm seeing. I have no idea what that is. I see golden blur. Not the fuck that is. What were you just talking about? Well, you were talking about learning the Bible in school, but so one of the things that a lot of people who have read the Bible or they have read a portion of the Bible is... I definitely don't think I read the whole thing. Well yeah, that's a thing. It's not very many people do and that's why I asked because a lot of it is kind of tedious history and there's a lot of ebigats and there's the whole line, you know, of Christ, all the ancestors and the whole delineation of all that. Where I come from, we were encouraged to read a verse of the Bible, but they would always tell you what it meant. And so I kind of went against, I used this little pinlite and did it late at night, but I read the whole thing covered cover when I was eight. And if you read every single book in order, you start to find that there's a lot of really beautiful, beautiful places in the Bible, [37:06] but there's a lot of stuff that's really violent. And then there's a lot of stuff that contradicts itself. And it's because it was written in different time periods by different authors and different languages. And it also has a historical context. And so generally, there's a lot of stuff that people leave out when they teach the Bible because it's really hard to explain. Like what stuff? Well, there's, for example, I mean, this one's taught a little bit, but David, King David, I'm sure you've heard of him like as of David and Goliath, but then he became a powerful king. And he saw this woman who this woman is often talked about, Besheba, he sees her bathing on a roof. And when we came from, we were taught like she shouldn't have been bathing on the roof now. I don't know. Right. Anyway, he demands that she come to him, and she is the wife of a soldier of his name, Uriah, a top soldier. And he commands her to lie with him, and she becomes pregnant. And then King David, who is the same guy [38:00] who had the slingshot of David thing Uriah, decides that he's got to figure out how to get her husband back so that her husband can go sleep with her and her husband won't do it because he's loyal to the army and he comes back but he sleeps like at the floor of the castle, you know, trying to... Wait a minute, he's trying to get the husband to go back with the wife? So that pregnancy will seem like it's his? Oh boy. Yeah. So... In the Bible. In the Bible in the Bible dirty David. Yeah, exactly and it doesn't even in there So you're I won't do it because you're I as loyal to David oh boy And so then David sends him to the front lines to have him be killed Oh boy so that he can marry his wife and get away with that child's not being a bastard child illegitimate oh boy and then God kills the child because, you know, needs to make the point that David was. And think about poor Bathsheba. I mean, she's just been like, wrong around her husband gets killed. All these things, her kid dies because God is punishing David. And her husband got killed because he was loyal to the guy who got her pregnant. Absolutely. That's not a story a lot of people hear. Oh my god. You can fact check that one if you'd like. Oh no I believe you. I'm good at that. I'm good at just okay. Now I'll go argue it. I mean there's something I talk a [39:10] little bit about in the book forager which I encourage everyone to read. But in that book I talk about has a kid that I looked up this whole long you know he begat he begat and there's only four times that it mentions a woman who a child came out of. Like it's all the male line. But occasionally they'll say, so and so, you know, bow as through Ruth or David's the father through Bashiba. So Bashiba ended up having a child who became Solomon, who we know, a lot of people know these, of being the wisest man who ever lived, and he wrote Ecclesiastes. And so there's four women who are named and as a child that was really interesting to me And I would ask you know why are these four women in the line of Christ and no one would tell me and so I started doing the research about that And one was a prostitute one oh here's a story you don't hear a lot when you hear another Bible story Sure There was a woman named tomorrow and she had been married to one of three sons. I think there was three and [40:04] married to one of three sons, I think there was three, and her husband died before giving her child. So as was the custom and the time, and perhaps the law, she married the brother of her dead husband, and that man would not give her a child because he didn't want to have a child in his brother's name. And so there allowed him more than one wife, but this woman was not allowed to have a child. So he did something they call onanism. So he like spilled his seed on the ground instead of inside of hers that she couldn't have a baby. And so God gets really mad because onan will not impregnate her. And so onan gets killed too. And so then her father-in-law decides not to marry her off to the youngest brother because two of the brothers are already dead, right? And he doesn't want to lose his only son. So he just vanishes her and she has nothing because what does a woman have at the time when she doesn't have a husband or a child? She has no ability to make a living in the world. And so this man is, the father-in-law is really unkind to her in a way that she decides she [41:03] needs to take something into her own hands. And so she dresses up like a prostitute and goes to the side of the road. And as he's traveling on the road, she puts herself in front of him and offers her services. And he sleeps with her and he does not have payment on him for some reason. And so he gives her his staff, which is a token of his word or something. So at least he's paying his prostitute. And she gets pregnant from this. And he orders her when he finds out she's pregnant to be stoned to death, to be killed, executed, because she's not allowed to have a baby outside of wedlock. And she said, okay, but let me just return this staff to you that I got from the father of the baby. And so then he ends up protecting her and she gets to have the child and that child is in the line of Christ. Whoa. Yeah, so really interesting things. I don't know what you're supposed to learn from that story. When I was a kid of reading this I would ask and of course no one really wanted to tell me Because she was rewarded for that. That's the interesting thing. It's good. The stories are crazy [42:01] It's it's just if you're being honest and if you believe in God, but you also know that people are full of shit, you have to put all this stuff through a filter. You just have to. And it doesn't mean that there's no God. Of course. It doesn't mean that. It just means there's probably something in these stories, but we have to be real careful with what that something is. Well, and I don't profess to know. I don't know why. They condone slavery. The Bible condone slavery. Like flat out. It's in there all the time. Yes. Women are essentially second class citizens. And you know what I found out recently that there was a woman before Eve. Depending on who you ask. Yeah. So what was that one? Well, that's not in the six books of the Bible that most people are taught in the Protestant tradition or the 69 or whatever in the Catholic tradition. That's part of the apocrypha. So these are books of the Bible that didn't make it into Christianity as such that we... [43:02] The editors cut today. Yeah, it was an editors cut, exactly. So that's not considered the word of God, what you're reading that is considered or what you heard, like word on the street. Word on the street. I heard it on the internet, but yeah. Okay. That's a street these days. Yeah, it is. It's the best street. Yeah, which is not to say it's not true. I don't know the truth. So I'm a yoga teacher among other things, and one thing that I say all the time when I'm teaching, which is really common thing as a yoga teacher to say, is whatever I am giving you right now is a suggestion. So listen to your body, do what's great for you, if there's no some feel right to you, please don't do it. And then you offer modifications, et cetera, and what high control religion does. and I'm not saying all religion, I'm saying the culture religion, doesn't give you the option of listening to your body or opting out of anything. This is the interpretation of the word of God. And the one thing I will say is, I don't know why, Tamara did what she did or why, Oh, and did what he did. I don't know whether or not the stories where I transcribed accurately or not, even if they were, like I, that is a different culture, right? And was I'm not, I wasn't there? [44:06] We don't even know if OJ did it. Right, so how are you gonna know what happened to David and Bathsheba? I mean, we're pretty sure he did it. Well. But I was just reading some story that OJ hired thugs to, there was another thing, there was some thing that he said that he hired thugs to kill his wife and Ron Goldman So this is really recent is my point and there's a bunch of versions of it and depends on who gets into power Whatever version gets propagated Right like if you if there was no internet and no independent journalism and They never had to account for the fact that Iraq never really had weapons of mass destruction Iraq never really had weapons of mass destruction. If the people in charge, if we're living in 1963, how long does it take before people figure out that Iraq didn't have those weapons? How long? Do we ever find out? I don't know. I was gonna say you might not ever find out. You might not ever find out. It took forever to figure out that the Gulf of Tonka was a false flag. [45:00] That got us into Vietnam. I mean, they took decades for that to come out. Now that's widely accepted. Our own history is sketchiest fuck. Our own history, our real absolute history is sketchiest fuck. That's why conspiracy theories are so fun. Of course. In a sense, a cult is just a whole conspiracy theory, but they control the narrative. They're completely controlled in narrative. Completely control the narrative. No one's allowed to question it. If they do, they're excommunicated. One of the ways you know something as a cult is they will always tell you that anyone who left, it's different than outsiders. Outsiders are people who had never had access to the truth. But people who are quitters, they literally call them quitters where I come from. I'm quitters, they literally call them quitters where I come from. I'm not really a good name. Nobody likes quitters. Right, right. And so quitters were just anything they said was of the devil. And so you were not allowed to talk to anyone who left. And that's really common in cults. You couldn't even talk to them. No. That's a Scientology thing too, I believe, right? Yeah, I think can't, you really do need to control the narrative. [46:06] And you can't let other stories get in there. Yeah, wow. Goddamn. It's so interesting how these patterns re-occur all over the world. You know, there's a guy in Australia that says he's Jesus and he runs this whole cult in Australia and he has this woman who he says is Mary, but the problem is there was another woman who was Mary before And the teen workout with the original Mary say So he tells his new lady. I was wrong about that other lady Your Mary and so Do you know that they say that the translation for Mary actually was woman? Oh wow And so the word possibly just means. I mean you think about it. There's so many Mary's in the Bible. Right. People talk about Mary Magdalene and her Mary in the other Jesus. Or you know that it um perhaps is just the translation for woman. Jesus as a historical figure is controversial. There's people that say that there's absolute evidence for Jesus but then [47:02] there's people that say do you know like how much historical record we have on people that lived thousands of years before Jesus? You know, there's there's people that lived that they know what they said they know where they ate they know where they went they know so much about them. But the Jesus one is kind of like there's people that say yes, there's historical people that say yes, there's historical documents that show he existed. And then there's a bunch of documentaries that if you can watch like, boy, the evidence is kind of sketchy, it seems to be a thought, like a recurring thing in many religions. It seems to be like Hercules, right? It seems to be there's a bunch of these that are like real similar to that, like the child of a god that comes down to fix everything. There's a lot of traditions where you have a virgin birth. That is true. And I am certainly not here to tell anybody what is true or not true, but the gospels that are written about Jesus were written after, right? Not during. And that was common. [48:00] I mean, Socrates never wrote anything down. He told the stories to to Plato and how long after his death? Well, I think the first one, now I feel like I am not a historian here, but I think the first one was like a hundred years. And so you held a Possible Paul who wrote, but he only saw Jesus after, like he was on the road to Damascus. And so he saw Jesus after Jesus had been crucified and risen. So what he saw was a ghost of Jesus. But the other, you know, gospels were not written by anyone who had seen Jesus in that way. Even though they were the versions like of when you have Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, these are the versions that they were told. So I don't know, maybe a hundred years. Yes, so this is where belief hits for people that are listening to this right now because there's going to be a certain percentage of people right now that have their hackles up because someone might be insinuating that maybe all this Jesus stuff is not legit. That's not what anybody is saying. What we're saying is these stories were written down a hundred years after he was alive and people are [49:09] full of shit. That's it. It doesn't mean that he didn't exist because if someone did, like if the early emergence of humans in the world, let's imagine what they mean by this story. If the early emergence of humans in this world were put down here to figure it out on their own, like a bunch of the Lock Key Kids, like Latch Key Kids from the 1970s, figure it out on your own. I'm gonna give you ways to live your life, tell everybody, but I'm hands off. I'm hands off. I'm on after life type of guy. I want you, I'm not gonna come down, explain it again, pop out of the clouds and freak everybody out. I did that once. I did it once. I'm done. You guys killed me. So I'm just saying, live your life this way. If that was a real thing, [50:01] what would be any different than the Bible? What would be any different about the, if a real event like that actually happened where the the the son of God came down and explained to mankind what they're doing wrong and lived this amazing life and taught so many people and they spread his wisdom and they spread his his information. It wouldn't be any different than the Bible, because you're still, even if it was like very clear what he was saying and very clear what he had done in the impact and how they all knew he was the Son of God. By the time that 100 years go by, people talking about it, who the fuck knows? Who knows? Yeah, but you know what Jesus did really well? So Jesus didn't write anything down, right? Like he was a storyteller. Jesus told a lot of parables and those are easier to remember. So if you listen to like his sermon on the mount or you know these various things, it's possible that some of these stories which they can be interpreted more than one way. [51:00] But like you know, to say that have you heard the expression casting pearls to swine? Yes, what does that mean? Well in the story of the prodigal son there was this and Jesus tells this story right? So there's these two brothers and one brother stays and does everything that his father wants him to do and the other brother says give me you know the son he says the younger son says give me my inheritance now I don't want to wait till your dead, give me my inheritance now. I don't want to wait till your dad. Just give me my inheritance now. I want to go have experience life. And the father gives his younger son his inheritance. And this young man who is raised well goes out and hires prostitutes does all the things, right? And just lives this loose life. And he finds that he runs out of money. And he is in a pen of pigs. and he is willing to eat what even the pigs won't eat, like the leftovers, and he is faced down in the mud and according to the story, in the pig pen and says, even if I was a servant from my father, I'd be treated better than this. And so he goes back, etc. And his older brother is really upset because the father brings the son back and treats [52:04] him. You know, it's just so grateful his son's returning to him. And his brother says, you know, or an expression like, um, you're casting pearls to swine. I mean, like my brother is a pig. My brother has like, you know, from the pig pin and you're giving him something that he doesn't deserve. And that whole story, I mean, you can interpret it any way you want, but this idea that you tell stories like this and someone could say, God is willing to take you back. And perhaps even better if you have experienced life and that just being obedient isn't the only way to live a life. Maybe that's the, I don't know what the real interpretation is, right? But like when you read a story like that or you hear the story, Jesus didn't write it down, but if you told that story, then now people come to that and they think, what does that mean? Does that mean when I find myself in a pig pen that I can repent and go back? What does it mean? Isn't it funny that Jesus is a storyteller? Yeah. Because a storyteller is a person who stands in front of people and commands attention. [53:03] And we know how that goes, right? Well, your story teller. Well, sort of. You don't think you're a story teller? I talk shit on stage, so it's just jokes. But those are stories? Some of them are stories. Yeah. Some of them are just making fun of things. Yeah. It's different than someone who tells you stories and in part to wisdom. Like if someone's standing in front of a group of people and parting wisdom, that's a very bizarre relationship. It's a very slippery position for the person that has the podium, very slippery, because you could start believing all this nonsense. You could start believing that you're different than everybody else. You could start believing that you are the son of God. Even if you know, I'm not even talking about Jesus. I'm talking about someone today. Someone today, even today in this day and age with the internet, if you started doing something like that and your skits are fronted, you could believe it. Lots of people, lots of people believe that the son of God right now. Yeah 100% legit and then lots of people believe that other people are demons. [54:13] There's a lot of like real funky beliefs that people hold on to and if someone like I said, if someone was a charismatic leader and they pretended to be the son of God versus someone who is actually the son of God 100 years later, it's going to be very difficult to parse out what's what. Right. Which is a problem. Which is a real problem. If you want to like put all your eggs in one basket, you got to pick a religion. And like boy, if you're agnostic, like which one of you guys is right? Cause this is something like the Hindus, right? Maybe the Buddha's right? I don't know. You know, some people would say that the Buddha and and Jesus have an awful lot in common. And if there is a right that a lot of those beliefs are gonna overlap and it is right to live a good life is to treat other people the way that you would want to be treated. And to love your neighbor. Love your neighbor. Yeah, I think there's universal truth and all that stuff. I think the source of it is fascinating. [55:03] Like what are the universal truths? But we always, we have to look at things through a filter of reality. And the filter of reality, we know human beings are full of shit. So you have to put that in there. You have to put that with everything. You can't just say they wouldn't lie about religion. Stop. That's nonsense. It doesn't mean that God's not real. It doesn't mean that Jesus didn't exist. Because maybe Jesus is the ultimate, it's like this is the last word, and then we're gonna let you guys figure it out on your own. And maybe if God exists, okay, let's just as a thought experiment. If God exists, why would God engineer an animal to be at the top of the food chain that is so filled with greed and want so much power that it's willing to take over enormous swathes of land with giant machines and murder anybody who gets in their way and it's all justified in the name of nationalism. Why would God universally impart that kind of sensibility on a species? [56:08] Why would God tolerate it? Why would God tolerate crime and murder and all the horrible things that we see today? Why would God want any of this stuff to go on? If God is so all-powerful that He created the universe, is this just a first draft? Did you like try like say like, like, what is free will, right? I mean, that's the answer to it is that in the garden, when Adam and Eve didn't know the difference and then they partake of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil that like by the choice to do that brought sin into the world. And once they're sinned into the world, then humans always have the choice to follow the light or follow the darkness. I mean, that's the party line, right? That it is human choice. Right. My point was that maybe God's ultimate plan is to make things as fucked up as possible so that it forces people to figure it out. [57:00] It forces an evolution of consciousness. It forces us to go to the light. It forces us because it's the only way we survive. Like that could be like a test. Like the entire human species, the entire civilization, the whole thing. It's just some gigantic test to see if you get it right. Did you ever read a wrinkle in time when you were a kid? Who's book is that? Manolimolingo. I've heard of it. I don't think I read it. Okay, but I was, I don't know if it was taught in schools, but kids write it for a year. I don't know when it came out in the 70s probably. But she says in an interview later that she thinks that in the end that God is waiting for every single person to choose to believe and to choose to follow. And that the light, so in a wrinkle in time is a story or science in it and a lot of things, but that when you see the light and you're drawn to the light that you might be tempted by the darkness, but when you really know what light is that you'll always choose that and so that the end of the day that we're all going to see the light. [58:01] But even if you don't believe in religion, if you know like good experiences and bad experiences in your life, and when you're happy with yourself and when you're upset with yourself in your life, you generally know like there's a direction that you really want to be moving in. And the more life experience you have, the more stupid things you do, the more you learn. And so the more you get a better database to draw from to understand what each and individual choice means in the greater picture of your existence. And as you go further and further, you go, if you're living a harmonious life, you go almost naturally towards that direction. Trying to be nicer to people, love your neighbor, have more peace in the world, don't be murdering people. You know, and that's generally like how most religions want you to believe. It's like the origin of it, there's some sort of a guide book for being a human. That's the origin of it, it seems like. They were just trying to, you can't just let people be feral. [59:02] You gotta give them some guidelines. You gotta end one of the best ways is to someone's watching all the time. This is a You can't just let people be feral. You've got to give them some guidelines. You've got to end one of the best ways is to someone's watching all the time. It was a dude in the sky. But maybe he really is. Maybe there really is something that watches everything. It might not be watching, but it might be like integrated into the entire existence of the whole thing. Maybe that's what the protocol's sentence about. Yeah, maybe. You know, he goes and has all these experiences, find himself like making every mistake possible and then sees the light and goes back to his father. Yeah. And goes back to the kingdom of righteousness. Yeah. There's wisdom in all these things. And there's these people that lived and were writing things down on animal skins while they were engaging in wars with spears. You're like, this is fucking wild-ass times and they were trying to sort it all out. Have you read Meditations, Marcus Rillius? Yes. Isn't that wild stuff? Yeah. That's, it's wild how brilliant this guy was 2000 years ago. Like his understanding of how to live a life. Right. It's so valuable and his concept of forgiveness. [1:00:02] Like forgiveness, he's a fucking Roman. I mean, this is like this badass soldier. And he's like, it's very important to forgive everybody, forgive him, forgive your enemies. Like he had this incredible wisdom about logistical like maintaining your objective perspective of the world. world was really interesting. So we know people were smart at shit back then. Yeah. Yeah. And if you go back 2,000 years before him, when people start writing all this stuff down. Well, people had a lot stronger ability to concentrate, obviously. Right, weren't distracted. No take-but. But even before things were written, people really had a command over language and world traditions and their memory they had to remember. Like you think about where to find whatever it is when you're a forger, where to find the hunt. All of these traditions have to be passed down for humans to stay alive. I mean, we're really fragile creatures. [1:01:03] And to think that when before there was anything except for spheres, you know, like how did human stay alive? They stayed alive because they could remember. They could remember what could kill them. Yeah. It was just like we used to be able to remember phone numbers. Yeah. Even back then. I had so many phone numbers in my head. I still remember the phone number of the field. Wow. I do, I do, because you know it was the one place. Wow. That was my home. Wow. Yeah. That's wild. Yeah. My mom was a survival training. She trained people to survive. And she trained us to survive. And one of the big things was surviving the apocalypse. But some of the survival techniques are actually really valuable. And that's the thing about forgiveness or anything. I was like, you know, even if somebody is telling you something that is in their own best interest, doesn't mean it's not true. Right? Right. And that there's so many truths than anything. And so learning to survive, like literally off the land or in the desert or things like that was a really harsh training that I had as a kid, but it taught me to look around everywhere that I've been ever since and [1:02:05] to pay attention. And I mean, that's a gift. And I think about that when I think about forgiveness too, like part of forgiving people is because on some level they taught you a lesson. Well, even in cults, they can give you valuable skills. Sure. I mean, just so I'm going to teach you survival techniques. How to survive the... If you're really worried about the apocalypse. You need to learn how to survive the apocalypse. Sure. So, you know, they do it for good intentions. Yeah. And some of it pays off a little bit. Well, do you remember the one in Los Angeles that had billboards up and with a very specific date? Oh, what was the date? I don't remember. But I remember there was this Thai restaurant I used to go to on Ventura's great tie spot. And right above it was this fucking billboard that was it was giving you a very specific date like repent the end is here and like it's gonna be this time. I'm like is this is like the the most brilliant album release like that you know what I'm saying? Like [1:03:02] some rock band is figured out a way to like make something go viral before the internet. I guess the internet was around then. It was not that long ago. I wanna say like maybe eight years ago, 10 years ago? Was it? Wow, that's pretty recent. Here it is, 2021. 2021. Judgment Day May 21st, 2011. Cry Mighty Untagod. Monday through Friday live open forum on familyradio.com. And what happened on that one? So yeah, there was only 13 years ago. Jamie, what happened on May 11th? That nothing. Fuck it zero. Well, people out of their mind. Like why 2K was a little like that too? Well, also December 21st, 2012. That was the end of the mind calendar. Oh, right. My license plate used to be December 2012, DEC, 12, whatever it was. But that was the end of the long count of the mind calendar and all the cooks thought that was the end of the world. So we actually did an end of the world show in Los Angeles with my friends from Honey [1:04:03] Honey Bam, my friends who's and Joey Diaz Doug Stanhope it was wild and what did you happen nobody died we had a good time we had a good time the world keeps going but there's you know it's just a long calendar it's a very bizarre ancient calendar that they don't really fully understand so to say that was the end of the world seems a little silly well you know you know, when they give these dates, like when my grandfather gave the date of 1977, they can also say anytime it doesn't happen that the calendars are wrong. Ah, how convenient. Do they have a good calendar? Can I see that calendar? Well, you know, but the point is like, oh, well, you know, with the charbathe ham and all this, like maybe that was redated because Herod didn't want us to know, like when the Jesus was really born because he was killing all the babies and he didn't really know the date of Jesus' birth. That's why he was killing, you know, all the young boys, as opposed to just that one and et cetera, et cetera. So back to the lady who was around with Eve. Who's that lady? I assume you're talking about Lilith, but that's not in the tradition that I read. So. But Lilith was supposed to, [1:05:06] I didn't even know Lilith existed until like two years ago, I think. Oh wow. I was like, what? Had to change your life in some way? Who fucks Lilith? Yes. That's okay. It was an eye opener. I questioned everything after that. What is the Lilith story exactly? So again, I was not raised on the Lillith story at all. I don't know Jamie, do you know the Lillith story? So the Lillith story? I've heard somebody feel like I'd misquoted. So the Lillith story, they decided it was BS, so they left it out of the big book. Uh-huh. She's been interpreted as, particularly as Satan. Oh, Satan. Well sure, because she's a lady. She made me do terrible things. Yeah, well you did that too. The original Hebrew word from which the name Lilith is taken is in the biblical Hebrew, the book of Isaiah, though Lilith herself has not mentioned any biblical text. In late antiquity and how do you say that word? Mandian. How do you say that word? [1:06:01] Do you know? Mandian. Mandian and Jewish sources from 500 AD onward, Lilith appears in his story, story, story, story, story, incantations incorporating a short mythic story in various concepts and localities that give partial descriptions of her. She is mentioned in the Babylonian Talmud, Nandash, Ababbat, Bava Bhattra, and the conflict of Adam and Eve with Satan as Adam's first wife. And in the Zohar Leviticus 19a as a hot fiery female who first cohabitated with man. Wow, many rabbinic authorities, including, boy, here's another word, my mom needs my moon needs and menacem Mary reject the existence of Lilith interesting so Lilith is controversial very controversial like all hot ladies but the fact [1:07:02] that she was the first yeah I mean again that's not the fact that she was the first. Yeah, I mean, again, that's not the tradition that most Christians are taught. I mean, it's considered part of the apocrypha. So I mean, I don't have any idea what the truth is, but she has been vilified even more than Eve. Although, if you think about Eve's pretty vilified too, I mean, she caused the downfall of human kindness. She's a woman all here. That's right. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Christianity has like an origin story. You know, an origin story for everything, for the universe, for people. And when you didn't have science and you didn't have any understanding of cosmology, you need something. We need something that, thousands of years just staring up the stars. Anybody know what the fuck's going on up there? [1:08:00] I know. Like, there's a Thor, he lives up there, and then there's Zeus, he's running shit. Yeah. Well, looking at the stars, the storytelling too. Yeah. In the beginning, there was the word. Well, I think that's one of the things that's really screwed up human beings. And I don't think in any small way is light pollution. I think our inability to see that we are in this celestial majestic cosmos, this thing. It's not just black with a few bright lights. The whole thing is lit up and it's the most magnificent thing you could ever see, but we sacrifice it almost for everyone that lives in cities. If you live in cities, you don't go anywhere and see it. You sacrifice a humbling spiritual experience of just staring at the stars. And I think it's, I think it's a spiritual poisoning. It's like, just like [1:09:04] if you have vitamin deficiencies, I think you have a spiritual deficiency, just a natural universal spiritual deficiency from not seeing the stars. I think it puts our place in the universe in perspective like nothing else can, because it's there, it's real, it's not a concept. It's not something that you have to use of microscope or a telescope to see. It's right in front of you, and it's absolutely spectacular. On a clear night in the mountains, where there's no light pollution, and you see the stars, you're just like, wow, is that up there every night? Did you could used to go to Joshua Tree when you lived in Renele? No, I didn't. So Joshua Tree is still so magical for that reason because there's no lights. I've heard it's incredible out there. Yeah, it's not too far from where I am. And when I feel that I need to commune with something greater than myself, you just go there and you just lay down and look at the stars. Light pollution is spiritual poisoning. Agreed. It really is. And it's a big factor I think in how lost we are. And how we're [1:10:11] not like consistently humbled every night. Yeah. By the majesty of the stars. If we were consistently humbled every night, I think we'd be generally be like, you could tone people down a little bit. Hmm. There is something really healing about looking at the stars and there's also the ability to literally not be lost if you know how to read the stars, right? So that is something I was trained by my uncle who was, you know, somewhat of an astronomer. But to look at the stars and to always know where you are. And if you know how to read the stars, you can never be lost. Hmm, so you could like navigate with the stars like if you're in a boat. You can. Absolutely. I don't know if I could do it very well from a boat, but I could do it by because I know how to put I could stick in the ground and to see the difference in the way that the sun goes so that you can see where you are because you got to know where the North Star is obviously. But then you also have to know what time of year it is to some degree. So if you're lost for, or you think you're lost for a matter of months or years, you would need to have some sort of idea where you are. [1:11:07] Um, and if you're in the desert, it's hard to tell seasons. But if I was on land, I could do it. Yeah. So you'd have to like add up the days. Well, you don't even have to add up the days. You just have to know what season you're in. And you can tell for years. You might just never know. She gets her getting prepared to be lost for years. Yeah. My mom used to have this phrase, I think she made it up, but it survived for years, survived with faith. And so she taught everyone that those five letters stand for what you should do first. You know, so the first thing, what do you think the first thing you should do if you're lost? Get to a high space, still look around. Well, the first thing you should do is shelter. Because the first thing you should do is shelter. If you don't have shelter, you're going to lose your body heat. It depends on where you are, of course. But if you're anywhere that gets cold in some rooms, you don't know what's going to get cold. Desert doesn't seem like it gets cold. Have you been in a desert night? So shelters the first thing. And then fire because the warmth is really important. So survive fear, so it's shelter, and then fire. [1:12:08] And then the thing is signaling. So if you want to be found, you put up a signal. If you don't want to be found, you need to know what creates a signal for people who are looking. So for example, like if you are in the desert, you try to find dark rocks to put SOS. But if you don't want to be found, you try to never put a contrast. So you try not to have anything that would contrast with the color of the land from a plane that a plane would see as contrast. Jesus. So there's a lot of fun stuff like that. So they were preparing you from hiding and for surviving. Yeah. And who are you going to be hiding from? Well, so after the second coming, when everybody goes up to heaven who's good all that's left is the demons in the world And there's a thousand years of terror that will rain upon the earth to the blood rises to the horses bridles Wow And you guys were preparing for this when you're little kids. Yeah Demons [1:13:01] Yeah, but if you're a good person you're to heaven. So you don't have to talk with these students. Yeah, so that's, you probably heard some of those stories, right? There's a whole book on these left behind series. So like who gets left behind? Didn't they do a bunch of movies? I think so. I think Kurt Cameron did it. Maybe. I heard they're amazing. Okay, I don't know, so I can't speak to that, but yes, there's a lot of that because it's part of a lot of traditions. And the idea though is that some people are left behind in order to try to win the last people, like all the evil people, sort of like Noah's Ark, right? Like Noah's left and he gets on this ark and like it's his job to, I mean, why didn't God just take Noah to heaven, right? But like he gets this boat and he has his family and all the animals and he gets to like stare you're clear from the flood or you have Sodom and Gomorrah, you have a lot, the only good person left and he wants to like help the people in the town or Jonah and Nivea, where he's like told to go tell the people they're bad and then like you know God saves the people anyway. So there's a lot of stories of God changing his mind and yes I know a lot of Bible stories. Yeah, there's definitely a lot of stories of God changes one. Yeah, so if you leave some people behind [1:14:06] who know how to lead the army of God, you can then proselytize and bring people into true faith or righteousness. It's also kind of like, I don't know, a way to keep people a little bit isolated if you're trying to teach them to do something that other people don't know how to do. And I was very ashamed of knowing that kind of thing. So it's the kind of thing I talk about in foragers. I spent a lot of time really feeling like I couldn't acclimate to the regular world later because I, you know, it's like if you're always looking at, I'm sure Navy SEALs feel this way. But you're always waiting for disaster. Right. Yeah. And you're always thinking preemptively, and what can I do to a vert this disaster? How did you get that out of your head? I still in my head Joe for real. Yeah, really? Yeah So right now you're preparing for the end of the world Well, you know I walked in your layer and I'm like, okay, there's all dudes here. Where's the exit? It's like no No, but I mean to some degree. I mean, I'm not actively preparing, but I feel like I [1:15:08] Yeah I mean, to some degree, I mean, I'm not actively preparing, but I feel like I, um, yeah, I mean, it makes it really hard to trust people when you've been trained that the people that you think you can trust are going to betray you. Right. Right. Yeah. Really hard to get that out of your head. I had a friend who was a Mormon. Only left. She was like in her 40s. And she said she became really susceptible to any kind of like spiritual people, spirituality, like con people. Just had this trusting nature from being like a strict Mormon or whole life and then all sudden cut loose and didn't, you know, it didn't know to distrust people. Absolutely. It wasn't programmed in. Because if you're only around people who are homogenous and they're like, you're taught, right? That was that like everybody in your group is trustworthy, you don't see the science, you don't know, I mean you don't know the red flags as people would say. She also said like she found herself to be susceptible to people telling her things. Like she just had like this automatic inclination to not question and [1:16:02] believe things that came from being strict, strict religion. Right. Why did she leave in her 40s? I don't know. Oh that's a tough time to leave. Yeah yeah I don't know what the story behind it was exactly. Yeah. Never got into it. Well that's the thing about Colts is it does make it really difficult to survive on the outside and I certainly know a lot of people have taken their lives after being excommunicated from the fields. And I had a dear friend, the first person who ever told me that used that word that is a cult, and I had been out for years. And I didn't, I mean, it's not like I'd never heard the word, but I didn't apply it to the way we were raised. And he had written, you know, these people are articles, he's professor, et cetera, and He took his life because it was really really really hard to live Yeah, and there's been many others who have done that There's also people are ashamed once they reintegrate into society. Yeah, they were part of that They got duped into this nonsense and so you hide it most people it's like it's not like you're telling people and they're laughing at you you're not telling anyone because you're scared they're gonna laugh at you or judge you [1:17:06] and so you spend your life in shame hiding. This truth that honestly doesn't make you a bad person at all and probably many people would understand but you don't talk about it. I didn't talk about it forever. Not just that but everybody's susceptible to it whether you believe it or not, especially if you were a child. Everybody's susceptible. This ridiculous idea people have that, oh, I would have known better. Like, I don't think you would. I really don't. I think you would now, but you're in you now. You're 35 year old, you're not that you that was five years old. And if that had been consistently perpetuated onto you, you wouldn't know. So there's a story we were raised with, which is a really common biblical story of Abraham and Isaac, and Abraham is told to kill his son, his only son, and he's told to take him up on an altar and slaughter him, and the way that you slaughter an animal. And Abraham makes Isaac do this hike up to this mountain where he's going to kill him, and he, God, has told him he must do this and so he, like, ties his own son on this [1:18:07] altar and brings up the knife to kill him and like very dramatically, you know, at least the story, you know, comes and as he's plunging down the knife and angel comes and grabs his wrists and stops and God said, I just wanted to make sure you'd really do it. And this is the story I was raised on and both my parents and my grandfather were very big on like you will kill your child if God asked you to that's what you're supposed to do. And I said this in the book and my brother who you know we really haven't talked about these or we have now but at the time we hadn't really talked about this. This is like all of a year ago. And he said when he read it he thought no it's not that our parents would have sacrifices. They did sacrifice us because they believed that somebody else would take care of us and we were raised very, you know, I don't know if Communities exactly the truth because there wasn't necessarily anyone who was checking, but there was random people who, in my case a lot of men, who just raised us because our parents had more important things that God told them to do. [1:19:00] And so there's a lot of ways to sacrifice kids. There's a lot of ways to think that God is talking to you. Yeah. You could apply that to other aspects of culture. Absolutely. It is, is there groups of people that get together, that have survived cults, that have an ability to help each other through this? So apparently there are, and I didn't know about this until the last year. Oh no. There's a whole huge group of people who have come out of like Hasidic Jews, like Orthodox Hasidic Jews, but there's also Steve Hassan. He's a doctor who spoke on Megan Kelly when I was on that show too. And he has something called the Bite Method, which just basically says that there's these really four major ways of control that cults do. They control your behavior, your information, your thoughts, and your emotions. And so he has these deep programming systems and counselors and people who can help you if you've been in that kind of high control group, [1:20:02] even if it wasn't religious in nature. You have talked that dude before. Have you talked to him? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. It's, um, I think he was a mooney, right? So, mm-hmm. Yeah, the whole thing of like his ex-communication and how he got free of it. When you were breaking free, what age were you? 17. You're 17. And what was it like like trying to integrate with regular people out there in the world when you were 17? I don't think I did that very effectively at all. How could you? Yeah, I just couldn't. So I got married. What was the experience like of like all of a sudden you go from being this incredibly controlling religious cult that thinks the end of the world is common to regular world. So it wasn't entirely all of a sudden I had a childhood illness, an autoimmune disease, which was probably, I mean, there's no genetic nature to these diseases, but where your body attacks itself. So it's quite probable that my body was just like, I can't take this anymore because [1:21:02] I mean stress. Yes. And also, there's a lot of deprivation, sleep deprivation, you know, when you're in survival training, a lot of extreme deprivation. So how long does survival training go for? Well, because I was born there, and it also because I was sick and because of other things, like I was trained for a very long time, like pretty much. We moved up there full time up to the mountain, which I talk about in the book forager. We moved up there when I was almost eight, and so I was up there until I left. And you were foraging? Yeah, yeah. I mean, there was other things going on too. I got sick, and then I was hungry, and there was a lot of other things happening, and so I found a way to start house cleaning for people. And that's how I got an application to college and stuff like that. But I was a house cleaner. And so that was kind of a foray into learning about how other people lived. Even though like it wasn't like I was invited into their family, I was invited into their things, but you can learn a lot. Like when you see a refrigerator that has food in it. What was it like just cleaning people's houses, just seeing how these weird people [1:22:03] lived in the outside world? Did you ever see the unbreakable is just seeing how these weird people lived in the outside world. Did you ever see the unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt? I did, I'll tell you so many people. We're like, you need a show about you. It's kind of you. It is. And you know what? That is very much the way that she's just like confused by the smallest things. I mean, it's funny the way that they depict it, but it's also kind of dark. I mean, I actually liked the dark humor in that. It's a great show. And handmaid's tale too. I got a lot of calls about that one. They're like, they made another show about you. But I think that there's real truth to these the things that confuse you. And I didn't have any friends. I went to college. I didn't know how to have relationships. There's a lot of rules apparently unspoken rules about you know the dance of friendship And I hadn't ever made a friend because I was born with the people I was born with and I didn't know how to do that Wow, I didn't know how to date. I didn't know how to like be I Didn't know any of the rules and it took me a very long time to learn them I what a crazy crash course. Will you will you open about your past? [1:23:00] No, no absolutely not I wasn't hoping. They just thought you were weird. Yeah. One two, tell me an ice queen. Oh boy. Because I was just really separate. You know, I didn't know how to and I didn't drink or smoke or do any of those things because I was so afraid of losing control. I was so afraid that if I I also felt like I was in a huge hole that I had to dig my way out of in order to find a way to live in the outside world. And so I couldn't afford to, like, I didn't know to trust and who not to trust. I mean, some of my friends now, even, and my friends have become my family and my brothers like that too, he has just the most amazing friends who are his family and they will still call me Farrell. They're like, you don't know how to, I'm like, I still don't understand the point of utensils. I mean, I can do it and I know which fork to eat from, but I don't want to, you know? You want to eat with your fingers? Yeah. Yeah. I mean, you know, I can eat with your utensils, but it's not if I'm not in polite company, I'm eating with my hands, yeah. Isn't it interesting that like eating with your hands is thought to be gross, but some things you have to eat with your hands. Like if you're eating ribs, how you gonna eat ribs? [1:24:06] If you eat ribs for the fork and knife, you're a fucking asshole. You got a big old Texas beef rib. You have to eat that thing with your face. You have to get in there. Yeah, so you have to use your hands. Isn't it weird? Yeah, it's interesting. And it's just cultural, Yeah, but there's something we do in Western culture because we're so in our minds Instead of our bodies where we separating ourselves So we need this like piece of metal that keeps us like from the reality that we're like fucking eating an animal or Yeah, you know, whatever it is we're devouring and somehow it's more polite if you have this piece of metal between you and it Bazaar it is and it's definitely keeps your hands cleaner, you know, and It's easier to pick the food up. And you feel like, look at me, I'm at a restaurant. I go napkin tucked in here. Yeah, a lot of rules. You have to have that on your lap. Right, and which side is the salad fork? Which one's the regular fork? Yeah, start in the outside in, yeah. Yeah, bizarre. Yeah. So when you are learning these things, you have to actually memorize them. You know, when you don't come from it, because you're like, there's a lot of rules and [1:25:07] all of them have systems, right? So I'm very actually fascinated by microcosms. You know, the microcosm cultures of any sort of culture has a lot of rules attached to it. Sure. You have to. Well, you must be hyper aware of that. I feel like I am. Yeah, you have to be. Yeah, patterns of people would just take for granted. You're like, oh, interesting. Yeah, I'm always watching. The thing about not knowing where the forks and knives go to me is one of the dumbest ones of all time. Because it's like a sign that you're a cultured person. If you know where the for, it has to be proper. Like, what are we doing? It's class. Do They have to be proper. Like, what are we doing? Do you want to have a boring-ass conversation with a bunch of people? Or do you want to sit down and have a meal and talk? Like that's the fun kind of, like, what the fuck are we doing? Like, who's pro-who are we impressing? Is the queen coming by? Like, what is this? Why would you want this? Well, haven't you experienced though that sometimes when you get rid of all that you just have a much more intimate conversation. Oh yeah. I like to eat on the floor. I like to sit on the floor [1:26:07] and I have this beautiful rug in my house and I'm like if people will do it I invite them to sit on the floor because it just feels more organic to me and it just it feels earthier and it feels just like I don't know it just removes all the hierarchies and have you ever seen those middle eastern guys all sitting around an enormous plate of food and they're all just sitting cross-legged just digging in with their hands and eating with their hands. Yeah. Well, if your hands are clean. Yeah, with the whole idea is you never shake someone's hand with your left hand. But right. You have to hand use to wipe your ass. So they think we're gross because we use paper, we just smudge it all over the place. Well. And Well, and they got a point they have a really good point like it is one of the grossest things if you get one of those Bade toilets you will never go back You'll never go back like how gross is it just smear it all over the place so they have You're allowed to eat with your hands. You're supposed to eat with your hands. It's just a normal thing like most of the time It's normal. How do you eat popcorn? Do you use this spoon? I feel so validated right now. Yeah. [1:27:05] How do you eat popcorn? Do you eat popcorn? Okay. Well, do you eat with your fucking hands? I'm bread. Yeah, bread. Exactly. Exactly bread. Who's cutting bread with a fork and knife? That's ridiculous. With your hands. I guess it's just the messiness of it, but I think if you can get people to act proper, like the conversations are gonna like stay in the lines. Yeah. You know, maybe that's it. Maybe, you know, if you go to an inn and everybody's eating chicken legs and drinking beer and raw, they're gonna have crazy stories. Yeah. It's gonna get uncomfortable. Just keep people, make them wear their nicest clothes so they don't want to get messy and give them a fork and a knife and keep everybody proper and everyone's trying to press everybody else with how proper they are and how much they know about fine dining. May I see this some all year to make a wine selection? You know, all of it. It's like, I remember the first time someone came to pour this last wine and whatever and then the guy is supposed to take a sip of it to tell the guy if it's okay. [1:28:02] And then like, what kind of culture is this? Like, I mean, also, and what are you gonna say if it's not? Like, what kind of... By the way, that is the most bullshitty, bullshitty moment you ever have in a restaurant. Because when you swirl that thing around, take a sniff and sip, unless you really know what you're doing, 99.9% of the people doing that I don't know fucking idea what they're doing. Absolutely. And I don't know if this is a fact, but I have never had anyone offer it to me. They always offer it to the man and the man decides whether or not it's a wine good enough for the lady. Oh, that's interesting. No, I've definitely seen women get it. Really? Yeah, if a woman orders about all wine. It's generally like whoever orders it. Hmm. I've seen that. Yeah, but maybe that's just modern today. Maybe that's like a new thing, you know, with women's liberation stuff. Like people don't want to be presumptuous so they'll offer the woman to taste. No one had ever offered me a taste. Interesting. Even if you've ordered the bottle, maybe I've never ordered a bottle. Maybe that's what it is. I think it's generally the person who orders it. That may be. Yeah. But I also wouldn't have any idea if that was because if I'm around a group of my friends and we order a bottle of wine [1:29:06] If I ask they always bring it to me, but if one of my friends asked they always bring it to them Yeah, I think it's generally the person who orders it. I think but I don't know I think it's probably just rules, but I would imagine that like When we get offered less The hood I would imagine if I was like at old school sommelier I would assume the lady would not be making the choice. Do you know anything about seeks? Seaks the religion? Not too much. Which is really more culture than a religion but this is about wine. I didn't chase change the subject. So they have this they do not drink unless the person they are with is drinking and they don't want to be rude or whatever. So they're not allowed to order wine, but if you order wine and you pour it for them, they can drink. And that's the same thing about smoking. They also never cut their hair. There's a lot of things, but I have a seek friend and he taught me I couldn't figure it out at the beginning because I'd be like, why is he keep asking me to order? He of wine and uh... he if i ordered even though he told me to order it and he was paying for it ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha this crazy yogurt cannabis mixture. I did not know that. That's supposed to be bomb digitty. [1:30:27] What does that stuff call, Jamie? Yeah, Duncan taught me about it. Like they have some... Are you had it? No, they have some like edible THC yogurt thing that's supposed to be insane. Oh, he's giving it to you. Okay, many different ways of making Bong Lassie. The traditional method is to blend fresh cannabis leaves, plain yogurt, a pinch of sugar, and nuts like almonds and pistachios, along with spices and ginger powder, fennel seeds, cardamom, and peppercorn and water. Wow, that's a concoction. [1:31:01] Click on that. What does it say at the top? Oh, why did you not try this? World oldest cannabis treat. Yeah, probably should try it. I think you should. Yeah, but I guess these guys take that stuff and get blasted. Yeah, so it's a really old and rich tradition. And they are very humble and kind people, the culture, very pacifist, et cetera, et cetera. But probably that's what they've been doing for them. Yeah, they're chilling. Yeah. They're in a good headspace. Yeah. So that's an example of a group of humans following a pattern that seems to be beneficial. It seems to like they've got a harmonious relationship with each other. They do, but their workaround, we can joke about the workaround, but the thing their workaround, you know, we can joke about the workaround, but the thing their workaround does means that when they associate with outsiders, they don't stick to their own custom. They accept the customs of the outsider. Right. And they work around it by the other person having the... Right, but they participate in it. Because they participate it, they don't keep themselves as narrow-minded. I mean, cold people, they're definitely no matter who pours you that glass of wine you're not allowed to drink it. My dad was in the military and he was like, I mean, he was drafted, but he was like, [1:32:06] you're not, no one could get me to drink a sip of alcohol, etc., etc. Like there, he was very proud of his ability to be separate. And so it's really difficult to have friendships in a cult. By the way, you think that it's so great because you're all in unison, but one of the things that have gotten out and maybe they still family members there is that the people who are left there they don't have any real friends because anybody would report on anybody there's no loyalty you can't you can't tell a joke you can't laugh at a joke you can't like there's really a lot of things that are forbidden that are I think required for friendship and so I had to learn that when I got on the outside and I look back and I think I was really impoverished by knowing people and moving in unison and having comfort but not really having the experience of trust. And so how did you how long did it take and how what steps did you go about to sort of like create your own version of the world? I feel like there's really good ways to do this and I did not do any of them. I mean, I was in college, so I, you know, whatever, I learned things academically, but what [1:33:13] I didn't learn is like in my body. I feel like I had four children really quickly, really young, and then I think I raised to myself with them, you know. I used to do this thing when my maybe were little where I was reading about other cultures because I didn't even know what American culture really was. And so I read about Japan, for example, which at the time they were saying, basically, you don't say no to a child to their five because you want to give them a sense of autonomy. And then you start putting the structure there. So anyway, I had these index cards, and I put them all over my house, and they said that they had the values that I wanted for my kids. Like resiliency, humor, agency, whatever. And so, and then on the back, I would put the techniques. So for example, I didn't put restraints, like I didn't use play pins or whatever. I just tried to create a safe environment, and then I did these things. [1:34:01] Like, they should be able to find me me but I shouldn't always be present. So I would say, hi, I'm gonna be working right here in this room, like two a one year old, right? And they're like, anytime you want me, I'm right here, but then like remove myself in sight so they felt that they were in control of their relationship and just all this stuff. But I did it so cerebraly, you know friends though. I don't think I had friends until my 30s because like any genuine friends because I didn't know how to be vulnerable and I didn't trust anyone. Like I would be friends with somebody for like six, seven years before I'd mention anything about where I came from. So how did you figure out how to open up? I'm still working on it. You're doing great. I'm trying it with you, Joe. Well, just the fact that you could do a communicate about it. You're so open about it. And I mean, I can't imagine what that's like. I can't imagine what that life is like. What your childhood was like. What being 17 and just being out in the world on your own, [1:35:02] trying to decipher what the fuck the outside world does. Yeah, and I didn't understand parents, either like people's relationships with their parents, like I didn't ever have, like my dad never bought me a meal in my life, like he never, even later in life when I reconnected or whatever, it's like I would always have to pay. There was never this sense that my parents were giving us, you know, like it was always us giving to them. And I felt like I didn't understand. I feel like I still have a little struggle with why are they taking such good care of you? It's like this, I don't know, I just connect as far as what it looks like to be a family. And my definition of family is wider than biology, of course. Right, because your grandfather wasn't really your grandfather, right? He was. He was your grandfather. He actually was my biological grandfather. But the other kids that we were raised with, all called them grandpa. Right. And so I didn't know the difference. But he was my actual. So there was a lot of people that were family, but they weren't related. Right. And then of course, once I left, I had to make new family as well and my friendships and my family. [1:36:05] What makes sense it would take you into your thirties because you have to relearn life. So you're going through one through 17 again. Yeah, yeah. It takes you that many that much more time. Did you see the movie Poor Things? No. Well, just this idea that if you put a child's brain in a adult body, that, like, that's what that story is about, it's kind of like a Frankenstein sort of thing. Who's in that movie? Emma Stone. Emma Stone is the movie? Is that a recent movie? Yeah, it's a bunch of those ways. She did, she did. She did, it's what I was going to be. Yeah. Like I pay attention. But it's not about name's Godwin, I think it's Godwin, right, Jamie? But it's, she called it God. So there's like a religious parable, but it's not specifically about religion. But I think that's what I was like. I was like a, which I feel like I'm story covering from. But. What years is supposed to be taken place in? It's surrealistic. So it's kind of Victorian, but it's sensationalized. It's almost like Diego Rivera crossed with, like, [1:37:09] oh yeah, because it's part of it's in black and white and then she starts singing color. Why don't we know about this? Yeah, I don't know how you don't know. I'm so out of the loop. There's just too many things to be attention to. I feel like I just taught you something. You definitely did. But there's just too many things to be attention to today. Yeah, there are. There are too many. But in any case, it's a adult brain put in, I mean, sorry, a child's brain. It's actually her unborn fetus that gets put into this body. She, she dies. And so the baby dies and then, or the baby just isn't quite die. So that, that brain gets put into this adult woman. But in any case, that's what I felt like. I felt like I was this adult body who just had an infant brain and I think it just took me so long. I feel like I don't come from an era to the way that that movie is depicted. It felt like there was no music. I don't relate to the music in my generation because I never heard it. [1:38:01] People are just everyone, she's the same kind of thing. I didn't go to concerts when I was a teenager ever, I never. So I didn't have any idea what that felt like. And so I don't associate with that with youth, for example. Did you guys listen to any music? I sang a lot of hymns. hymns. A lot of hymns, right? All Christian hymns, but John Wesley, there was a lot of, I don't know if you know, who John Wesley is, but he wrote a lot of hymns. And, you know, they can, I think, 1600s, can you fact check that, Jamie? But it was, he wrote so many songs, and I knew all the lyrics to those, I knew how to sing in harmony, and... So when you were kids, like you guys would rock out. You just rock out and sing hymns? Well, yeah, pretty much. So when was the first time you heard another song? You know, the thing that I got ultimately kicked out for was going to a movie with a boy who was raised with me. He was a young man. He had left, and he was a college kid. [1:39:01] And I was 17. And I went to the color purple purple and there was music in that and I We allowed to see movies. No. Had you seen one before? No. Color purple was the first movie you ever saw. To my knowledge. So that really changed my life and then I started watching movies when I got to college. What was it like going to a movie at 17 for the first time? Magic. Like a, like the most beautiful church. It was so beautiful. It was like, it was, I mean, just the darkness and then the way that the screen lit up. And I just, it was so beautiful. I just felt like. I think we take it for granted, right? Yeah, it just made me cry. Yeah, wild. And that was the first time you heard other music too. Yeah, and so I didn't start listening to pop in their music that took me a while to like acclimate even once I got out. Like, I knew that other people were doing it, but the first time I like, I maybe bought a CD, for example, [1:40:05] I think I was 30. Wow. Like I just didn't, because I had babies young, I just didn't, I did all that in my early 20s, I had all these little kids, and I was doing, you know, the mom thing, and trying to get myself educated, so I could, you know, make good money, and take care of everybody, and it just felt like there wasn't time for that, So I didn't have a youth. And so I met a music critic on I was in my 30s. I'm actually putting this in my next book, which is actually called Protocol Daughter. And he introduced me to the songs of, it was in the early 2000s, and he introduced me to the songs of the 90s and taught me like the derivations of these, the beats and the lyrics, and he had come from a pastor father so he understood religion in relation to music and it was just this wonderful music education so I did all that. I mean I really think I came in to understand music in my 30s. You were almost like an alien. Yes very much. Like an alien version of a human being that they dropped off at 17 years old like what? [1:41:03] It's shocking to me how long it takes to figure it out even when you think like you can learn to, you know what it is. I could learn to code switch and I could learn to be presentable on the outside like I could learn which work to use like really quickly that you can learn but you can't learn to feel the other things that other people feel. And so you're always just a little bit disconnected as like being kind of in a bell jar or something. Like there's always a distance between, or there was for just a long time between me and someone else. And so for example, my brother who loves you, as I told you, I went to a birthday party recently and they're like, you have a sister? Like he never even talked about his family. They didn't even know. His very best friends, who he had been friends with for over 20 years. He never told them. He looks really normal. He has, but he didn't have the ability, I think, to really maybe gauge the way that it affected him. [1:42:00] And as a family, the siblings all the siblings all kind of went different directions because like it's painful to go back and relive it. And you don't, it just feels like you're always going backwards if you try to be around where you come from. And you just want to, you just want to like live in the world and you know find a new identity. Wow. So there's long-term consequences for coming out out of something like this. Oh for sure. How could it not be? Yeah. I mean just there's so many things that can happen to a child when a young that will screw them up forever. But the fact that you had no understanding the outside world and you fully believed all this stuff that you were being told, you learn how to forage, survive in the woods, and then you get released. And then you're out in the world because you want to see the color purple. Crazy. It's such a crazy story. But the outside world is really complicated because there's so many different belief systems out here. [1:43:06] Yeah. Yeah. Did you were you at a rush to try to find a new one? I was in a rush for everything because I didn't think I was going to live very long because I was still inside my head that I was a breaking. I mean, even now, like to be honest, writing about this, so this is what the former field people have said to me all the time is like nobody's ever talked about this publicly. We were were trained, you know like once you're in the field you're always in the field like it's like being a marine or something like these are our brothers and sisters and arms and you never allowed to talk about this. So to come out with the book it was the first time that anyone has spoken publicly about this particular cult and I was raised of course to believe I'd be struck dead by lightning if I ever talked about it. And so there were so many years that I think it was just so painful to even think about. I think, you know, where I come from. So I mean, I'm kind of going around a circle to answer this question. But if that like, it's been very recent [1:44:03] that I can own that as being an essential part of my identity. Wow. How did you do it to attribute any specific, like, is it meditation, is it yoga? What is it that sort of allowed you to kind of regain your life? Have you heard the expression or that the word biofilia? No. So biofilia is the love of living things and it's not specifically environmental. It was coined in 1973 I think by Eric From and it is the love of living things. So it's not just humans but it's animals, plants, whatever. And so I think that because I was raised understanding the natural environment, I really feel like when I've been lost in the world, you know, or you think you're lost, I don't know if we can ever truly be lost. I think that we're just learning what's around us that isn't working. Like that's always information that can, if you know what to look for, there's always information that can get you where you want to go. [1:45:03] You just need to know where you want to go, right? So I feel like putting my feet in the dirt. So you know, kind of like you know, but like being in my body and being on the earth, and I think yoga helps with that even if you're not doing it on the grass, although I do teach outside sometimes, but like if you can find yourself like what you're connected to, that feels solid. That feels like something you can believe in, right? Because it's not about an idea. It's like, I am held by gravity right now. Like this gravity is holding me into the earth. And this earth, like it is capable of nurturing seeds. Like things grow out of this earth. Like we forget that, I think, sometimes in our contemporary culture that everything comes out of the earth. And so I think that one of the practices, I do meditate, but I meditate before I came here today, but I think that if I can be under a tree, you know, and like on the earth in some way, then I feel like that, I guess is that neuroplasticity thing, like, I can always grow. Like there's, that there's no point at which I'm [1:46:00] separate. And I think there's that part of practice of being like, no, I'm truly connected. And all the things they taught me was a way of keeping me separate. But I can always go back to the source itself. Yeah, I think when we were talking about the sky, the light pollution, being a spiritual deficiency, I think we have that also from the forests. I think there's something that connects us when we're in the wilderness. There's a feeling that you get when you is a There's a humbleness that comes about you a humility that you have to accept that the the wilderness is so vast and powerful and Amazing that it puts you in check it gives you like this feeling of connectedness to everything We think when we're living in cities and we're getting new birds and we're going to restaurants, we think we're disconnected from nature because we've kind of set it up that way. We set our own little hamster wheel up over nature but we're missing something by doing that. We're missing something. Because we are nature. Yeah, we are. We are nature. We are nature. We just create our [1:47:01] forks. Let's go back to that metaphor and that little thing. But we separate ourselves from the reality that we eat straight from the earth. And most people they eat animals that are alive on the earth. And that thing was a living creature. And you were devouring it. And that is so primal. Yeah, life eats life. Yeah. And we all come from the wilderness. We really do. For hundreds of thousands of years, we were way, I mean, just it's astronomically like longer that we spent foraging than we did. It's civilization. Yeah. Yeah. With an agriculture. I mean, agriculture is relatively new. Yep. And so we all come from that. So when we get there, I think it is something that is inside of us. And I think we would all benefit. At least I benefit. I shouldn't preach this to anyone else. And I think we would all benefit. At least I benefit, I shouldn't preach this to anyone else. And I think we benefit when we connect to it. I think all human beings share that. The only people that you have to be like, really, really neurotic and like a crazy city dweller, like get me out of the woods. I ate it out of here. It's so quiet. There are a lot of people who are like that. There's smoking cigarettes. Bobby, when we fucking go in home, this is terrible. There's gotta be people like that. [1:48:05] Yeah. People that are just like, both these people to get acclimated to those particular cultures too, right? There's people that, maybe there's a thing that they do in their city that they can't be without. And they need that thing. They think they need it. Yeah, oh yeah, for sure. But like gambling addicts, like a friend who's a gambling addict, lives in Vegas, so I'm never leaving Vegas. Cause once a gamble all the time. So if that's the place, you know, that's the place for you, you can't get that guy to live in the woods. You know, there's no card games out there. No, but there's a lot of adrenaline if you're looking for it. Oh yeah, it's a different kind of adrenaline. Yeah. But it's also, there's a lot, like I said, the humility that the woods give you. It's first of all, it's so hard to just get around. It's fucking hard to get around where there's no roads and shit and everything's up and down. I'm getting GPS doesn't work. Yeah, but you actually can get GPS out there. Not everywhere. Not everywhere. What do you mean? Well, I suppose if you have a specific advice, but your phone is not going to work in plenty of places. I wonder. Oh, I know. I know there's places, phones, no. [1:49:05] But the new phones, don't new phones use actual global positioning satellites so that it works even without a cell phone signal. I think iPhones do that. I think Samsung phones do that too. Everywhere do they? I think they do. It's very limited. Is it limited? Like you can send one, not like one, but like if you're stuck. No, no, no, no, you misunderstand what I'm saying. No, you misunderstand what I'm saying. Yeah, there is satellite messaging, but what I'm saying is GPS coordinates that your maps work. I think your maps still work even if you don't have cell phone signal. You can't put in, I can tell you this, if you're in a forest, it's not going to tell you which way to go because it hasn't been mapped in that way. Like it's not going to tell you to turn last in 50 yards. Right, right, right. You get GPS, but you don't get directions. You don't get directions. You're going to have to trust something else. Siri, tell me how to get home. Right. [1:50:01] You're going to have to find some other ways to identify. Yeah, you'll have to actually look at the terrain on your GPS unit and figure out which way to go. Yes, you can do that. But you can pick like a waypoint and it'll actually steer you towards a waypoint. And what if you don't have your device on you? You're fucked. You're fucked. No, no, you can actually, you can actually. Oh, no, no, no, I'm not, I mean, you're fuck. I'm, I'm fucked. You're not fucked. And iPhone's GPS will work fine without cell phone coverage. Your phone will know where it is, but you will not be able to see your location displayed on Apple Maps without a data connection to download the map. That makes it a little bit tough to get. Yeah. So it knows where you are, the GPS will work fine, but so could you just download the map of the entire country and leave it on your phone? So I know you can do that with certain apps. Like there's Onyx Hunt. It's a map application for wilderness [1:51:01] hunters and you can use that new download areas and you have them regardless of cell phone service so you can tell where you're at. That may work but most people on this planet have not done that. Yeah, you're fucked. Yeah, you're fucked. If you don't know where the North Star is, you don't have to figure out what North South East and West, yeah, you're in trouble. You don't know where the Sun rises and says, some people don't even know even know no you're right they don't they have no idea a lot of people live in the city They're which way does the Sun set north? Oh, I'm fucking no Probably north and they just are going that they think they're going north and they're going deeper into the woods And you know another thing about like going deeper in the woods like humans are prone to circular movement So if you don't know that you will just keep walking in circles and so you could the North, and you could keep walking like kind of towards it, but you're gonna veer slightly, and you're gonna find yourself right back where you came from. So it's not good. And you have to figure out a strategy to keep yourself from doing that, because you will naturally, they've done all sorts of studies on this and humans walk in circles. That's what we do that? It's something in our brain. We don't really understand what it is to walk in a straight line when she could get [1:52:07] real like, prodigal son about that too, I think. But... Getting lost in the woods has to be one of the most terrifying experiences. So you know what you should do if you get lost in the woods? What? The first thing you should do is stop moving. Stop moving. Yeah, stay put. You really need to create a shelter and come up with a plan. You really, just walking around, you're not gonna get out. Yeah, people have died, I mean, you probably heard this, but like on the Appalachian Trail and stuff, they'll like go off the trail for like 10 feet or something to pee, but it's like in a bush or whatever, and then they lose track of where the trail is, and they will die 20 feet away from the trail because they moved around, they exerted all their energy and whatever, if they had just stayed put, and waited for the sunrise and did whatever. And then they figured out a system like by watching the sky or if they had we should all download all these maps. Make sure we have GPS on our phones. But you know people just, I mean there's all these stories. [1:53:01] My daughter was telling me that one of the nurses and she's so capable, she and her sister took her daughter, so it was like the two sisters, so the aunt and the mother and the daughter, teenage daughter. And they were saying to Kewa, like they were the camping and they went just done a little like a little hike out, you know, right next to the campground and her husband knew which campground she was at. They died at just a hundred yards away because they didn't have any idea how to do basic survival. Wow. Actually the teenager lived because the mother in the aunt gave her all their clothes and they covered her and everything and she survived and they both died. Yeah horrible stuff. Oh my God. The things that people don't know about the wilderness so stay put. Oh. If you're not good at this. Yeah, there's a lot of tragic stories. Jesus. It's so, it's so unforgiving out there. Yeah. And so many people have no idea how to even navigate. And most people are out of shape, you can't even walk up hills. Well, there's that too, but it's stuck out there, you're fucked. But we survived just a species out there. So the thing is, it really is about knowledge. [1:54:00] And I mean, living in a city would be impossible for pre-starch people too. Like, cars are so fast. How do we avoid people who can't work? They would definitely get more. If they had a car, they would unlock it. They would never figure out how to drive a car. No one's going to teach them. Oh, yeah. So you imagine you've had those speeds. But the point is you can understand the wilderness, people don't and then a sense they're not humble enough, right? They don't understand that there's something terrifying if you don't know what you're facing. And it's interesting that the disconnect from nature that we get with cities enables people to create things where you don't need nature anymore. Where you supermarket, trucks, all those inventions, everything's coming out of cities. And it's all getting constructed, built, put together by group people, living in cities. And it all comes from nature but nobody sees that because it's so many, so many steps removed. Right. But it, whatever it does, it removes you further and further from nature. Yeah. Like all the things that we make remove us further and further from nature. [1:55:02] I feel like a lot of the high control group Coltty things is as far removed from nature as possible too. I mean, like my mom was really an exception in this way. My dad didn't learn the survival stuff. It was just my mom. But there's this idea, I think, that if we could understand our true nature, we'd be a lot less susceptible to all sorts of control, right? Because we would understand that we don't have control and that no human, you know, who professes to have, the ultimate wisdom could possibly have it because we would be so attached to, I mean, the cycle to nature, like everything is pray and predator it and like everything's part of a much larger system. And if you saw yourself as part of that, it would be really hard to fully believe any one person could be the son of God in today's age. Like that they profess to be the prophet or whatever. You would have a lot more cynicism, I think, if you understood nature, which is a move from it. We're very moved from it. And that's also a problem of protecting your kids, right? Then your kids are not going to meet a bunch of creepy people where they could recognize [1:56:03] creepy people in the future. You know, I met a lot of fucking psychos. I know that. I see him coming. I go, I know what you look. I've seen what you before. You're out of your fucking mind. And if you don't know that and you're a 17 year old kid who just gets released from a cult because you went to color purple. And all of a sudden you're out there in the world world like had you figure out who to trust? Oh it took me a long time. In fact I I've been physically assaulted. I was I mean I've been physically assaulted by people I had no idea where danger is like you were some guy and you know he's like oh I'm having this backyard barbecue or whatever and then there's nobody else there and you don't know to leave you know you're like in the backyard and he grabs you what I, my bones have been broken. I've had, because I didn't understand. I mean, I could fight back to whatever degree, but I also, you can't fight to get back about somebody who's two or three times your size. You know, it's just really difficult, but I didn't know. The people were dangerous. Right. People were dangerous in that way, right? Whew. Wow. So it takes God, what a wild experience. That would make it hell of a movie. [1:57:05] You know, because like the unbreakable Kimmy Shman is like really funny. Yeah. But like a real, it's more fun when it's funny. Yeah, well, she's hilarious. That shows hilarious. It is, I really love it. The gay guy at the roommate, oh my God. What's his name again? I don't remember it's for a while since I saw it. The show is excellent. It's such a funny show. Well, after Forger came out, I was approached to do a creative shopping room and whatever. I did write a screenplay for Forger that is different than the book, but it is about all of this. We'll see what comes of it. Well, I hope they make a movie out of it because it's such an insane story. It's just kudos to you for getting through it and becoming the person who's sitting in front of me today. Yeah. It's a wild ride. Yeah, it's been a long journey. But it's nice to be on this side of it. I'll tell you how many cults are active right now in the country? Do we know? No, we certainly don't know. But there is such a thing as a cult directory [1:58:03] which you had mentioned too. So when I was on, I did a local television right at the beginning when the book came out, Frank Buckley, and the woman who was his producer, he was asking at the end, it's like, oh, you know, I didn't know this cult existed, how did I not know? He said, and she said, well, I did my fact checking before we booked her, and it's in the cult directory and he's like what there's a cult directory and the field is actually in the cult directory and I didn't even know that I was like whoa so it's been reported so I think a more interesting question actually is why are these cults not shut down I mean there's a bunch of them like you said someone told you there's just tons of them they're active in California and he don't know if it's are that like freedom of speech that we have going on isn't the real question like how do you define a call? Yeah. Because Scientology has tax exempt status in the United States, which indicates that it's a legitimate religion. Because they sued the IRS. They want it. And they smart. They got thousands of dudes threatened to sue the IRS and they filed lawsuits and I guess the IRS caved and said, all right, we don't want to deal with all this. Well, I mean, which is really powerful of them. It really is, but also if you declare yourself a religion, then you do get taxidempt status. [1:59:10] But I think what makes a cult is, yeah, I mean, there's like the Steve has something that we talked about, but you know, this is really, really high control. But the question is, unless the abuse is reported in real time, it's really hard to find. And the people who are in the cult, A, don't recognize this cult, because nobody's in a cult, calls it a cult. And then B, are loyal to the cult. So they're not talking. Like you can't just go in and ask people, they're not gonna tell you. I would not have told you. I would, there's no way. When I was there, when I was 16, Right. Not just not publicly. I wouldn't know how to privately either. Yeah. I mean, you don't think it's a cult if it's the truth. If you think it's the truth, you think this isn't a cult. Where does the people live in the right way? Right. Yeah. And there's a lot of people who believe that, I think, about themselves. They believe that about religions, too. And the and they're referred to as a cults, [2:00:06] like just historically. Like this is the Christian cult and this is what they did. Like as you would say, this is the Hindu cult, this is the this cult of that cult, they don't think of it as we have this problem like religion cult, different things. But it's groups of people that have very specific rules that you need to live by, that's mandated by a higher power. Yes. Like, if you just break it down to what the ingredients are, like you could tell me it's a steak, but it has all the ingredients of a carrot cake. I think this might be a carrot cake. No, no, no, we call it a steak. Like, but it seems like it's got carrots. It seems like a carrot cake. You know, and that's religion and cult. There's this very blurry line. So Scientology should win that lawsuit. So who's to say? What their Mormons aren't legit or they are legit? Okay, so they get taxis and taxis, but Scientology doesn't. Why? [2:01:00] Yeah, I don't think you can come up with a legitimate reason why and in all these groups Scientology and Mormonism too. There's these inner circles that are much much more More devout so there's plenty of people who define themselves as Mormon or Scientologists who aren't Living this really narrow life, but the people at the center are but that's the question is like how hard is it to form a religion? Is it really easy like how easy easy is it to get that tax as M status? How many people do you need? I feel like I could do it. I bet you could do it. I feel like I could do it. I bet you could do it for sure. But it's one of those things. It's like how many, you would imagine that everybody would be doing it. It's a great way to just trick the government. Sure. You don't have to give them any money did that right Jamie like a spaghetti monster or something and actually created the church of that. And you got 10 they got text exempt status for that. The flying spaghetti monster. Well you it would be really hard to argue especially when you deal with something like Scientology when you have a science fiction writer who is you know he's he's the most prolific fiction writer of all time. Elron Hubbard is, he wrote more words down [2:02:08] and had them published than any human being that's ever lived. I think he was a boy scout too actually. Was he? Yeah, we should check that one, but I think he was. My favorite is when he's in the sea org and he's got like this military jacket on and just gave himself a bunch of medals. He's got like this exact medals. Have you gone to the museum? Which one? I think there's more than one, but there's the one in Hollywood. No, no. I didn't. I met with them before. I got audited what you hold onto the cans and they did that. Yeah, I did that. And I could feel the energy. I was filming a television show in San Diego and they had, we were near a park and this was in his famous back then, I could get away with it, they didn't know how it was. And I sat down with this dude, he went through the whole thing with me with the emeter and his tell him, and I realized somewhere along the line that he's just to do to join Scientology. And now part of his job is to go out and convert, but he's not very good at it. Like he's like, he didn't care for you. No, He's not good at selling it. He was very non-intusistic about it. I would have thought that all the cult members [2:03:06] were super pumped to get you to join. But this guy was just lost, I guess this is my people now. Yeah, he held on to the meter. So it was interesting. He wasn't even so reshaped in my mind. I was like every person trying to indoctrinate you into this cult is gonna be really charismatic and really locked it. No, those are the leaders. They get the regular folks to go out to the park and annoy people and get yelled at. You fucking whack a dude. Like, so that's the guy that I'm at. The people at the top don't want to do that. It was very weird. I feel like you could be a call leader, Joe, if you wanted to be. I don't think it's that hard. I feel like you could. If you decided it was one of your life goals, hit me up and I'll give you some tips and you'll be there in another week or two. I'm not interested. If it's a call, you could leave anytime. There's no requirements and just say you're in. Okay, you're not. I don't care. I'll think the Pasta farans have tax exempt status. [2:04:00] But the Scientologists do. If you read the fucking story anybody that reads that story the story of the Thetons and the volcano and the aliens and the spirits. It's really interesting. It's crazy. It's crazy. If you read Lawrence writes going clear, it's a very fascinating book that because sort of details the whole history of Elrond Hubbard creating it and he was basically a crazy person who was self-diagnosing. You know, and so he was like self-counseling. He was using all these self-help books and psychology books, trying to figure out how to live a life. And that was Dianetics. Yeah. You've read some of that, right? Yeah, well, I bought it. I, in the 1990s, they had those info mercials. Whereas the volcano and the books were flying out of the volcano. It's a funny, and I didn't know that it meant, I didn't know the whole story behind the volcano where the aliens throw the fucking frozen souls in the volcano, all that crazy shit. So I just thought it was a self-help book. And back then I was really in a self-help book. [2:05:00] So I'd bought like Anthony Robbins, audio cassettes and all that shit. I was like, it was into things like that. And so I was like, oh, that seemed like out of maximize your life. And this commercial, I'm like, oh, interesting. So I bought it online or on the phone, I think back then you called, wasn't online. And they never stopped sending me shit. They sent me shit for years. For years. It was invitations to this and invitations to that and half off of this and Free that and come here and meet with us and they just wouldn't stop They just bombarded me with stuff. Well, you would be a good get if they could get you So you had all these iterations of like these self-help, you know stages of all these things through all of it right all the ways that you have Self-help So in the sense. So what has been the most useful to you in being the kind of person you wanna be? Time, time's a big one. Learning, over time, experiences, introspective thought, making decisions based on truth, [2:06:05] rather than based on truth, rather than then based on what you wanna believe. And just the accumulation of life experiences, like a life well lived, and then psychedelic drugs. Those have been very effective. Those are the big ones. Those the psychedelic drug breakthroughs are the ones where you, you, I always say that it's like control, all, delete for your brain. And then your, your brain reboots with a fresh desktop. But now there's only one folder in that desktop and that folder says, my old bullshit. And you have a decision. Either you open at that folder and start behaving exactly how you used to because you have a pattern you're accustomed to or you try to reengage with the world, re-interface with the world with this newfound experience as a guide. Yeah, I [2:07:00] Think that's what the heart of all religious experiences are. I think there was people back then that experimented with psychedelic drugs, and they had profound experiences, and they might have even experienced entities. They might have even had interaction with God. It might be a real thing that you could do with the right stuff. And I think people have been talking about it and writing it on cave walls, and depicting it in many religious texts and drawing images of it on the fucking ruins of Egypt, it's everywhere. It was in the Illusinean mysteries in Greece. It's everywhere. Psychedelic drugs have been everywhere throughout human history. I think they're probably shaped a lot of the way people formulated their ideas about religion. Absolutely. And I think that a lot of the way people formulated their ideas about religion. Absolutely. And I think that a lot of people believe that it was the foraging of those mushrooms that led to psychological drugs that led the cultivation of communities that were religiously based. But that they really came from just looking for food initially and then they would have [2:08:01] these experiences and they could see something bigger than the life they were living. I always wondered why the Hindus don't eat cows. Like how did that become religious? Specifically cows. Right. And does it have anything to do with the fact that they make mushrooms? Like because mushrooms grow in cowshit and if you had cows that were connecting you to God, you wouldn't want to eat them. No, they would be a form of a god. Yeah, don't eat Betsy. Betsy's cool. She brings us to mushrooms. Yeah. Because that's where the mushrooms grow. I mean, is it a coincidence that mushrooms grow on cow shed? I don't know. I mean, what is the original origin of why Hindus don't eat cows? Because I really don't know. But I know that there have been cultures that were cattle worshiping cultures that also had mushroom iconography. There's some cattle, I forget the name of the culture. It was a weird like chakdol, he yok or something like that. But it's a culture that had all their iconography. It was like cattle and mushrooms. Or some of their iconoccurriations, [2:09:07] like some of their writings with left. So like so many cultures that show evidence that they've been doing stuff with psychedelic drugs forever. They probably formulated so many of their, you know, like their shamanistic practices and how they organize their culture and their communities. They'll probably all do rituals together to connect to each other. You know, and stare at the stars. About psychedelics though, that is so beautiful compared to cults and cults don't do these because they tap you into yourself and you have your own unique or someone unique, but you know, you have your own individual experience of what it means to you. Yeah. And cults can allow you to have that. That's true, but you know, you have your own individual experience of what it means to you. And cults can allow you to have that. That's true, but you know, there are a lot of instances of guys who are shaman, even in the rainforest that do creepy shit. Like, well, they're human. Yeah, but they're not just human. It's like they do start running things like a cult even though they're shaman's and they're giving people ayahuasca. That's depressing. [2:10:06] Yeah, well, certain of them might have gravitated towards that intention in mind. They might not have been born true of the shamanist experience. They might have entered into it at a point in life as a con artist artist, you know, which does happen. It does happen like people infiltrate certain kind of groups of people if they feel like it's a bunch of vulnerable people in those groups and a bunch of like easily influenced and you know, open to interpretation and you know, you could just tell them that you're connected to God in a very unique way and also in your guru, you know. Yeah. Yeah, there's a lot of those guys too. I mean that was to the god in a very unique way and also in your guru. You know? Yeah. There's a lot of those guys too. I mean, that was the wild, wild country guy. You know? He was like a legit guru, said some O-Show, said some brilliant things, but also was fucking crazy out of his mind. So I feel like we need to be skeptical of anyone who tells us that they know the word [2:11:03] of God, that they are connected to God and you're not. So if you tell me this is my experience, and I ask you questions, I can choose to follow you or not follow you, right, based on whether or not I like the results of your experience, et cetera. But somebody who says, no, God told me this, and this is the only way. But imagine if God really did tell you, and we wanted to believe you. Well, I'm sure a lot of people. I really am a prophet. Yeah, well that was my grandpa. Guys, I know this is crazy. I know this sounds crazy, but I just got back from the mountain that God gave me a series of rules on God to give it to you. Yeah. Yeah. Nobody would believe you, which is really ironic about today. Like Christians like Christians really want Jesus to return. But like what amount of convincing would you have to do to get people to believe you were really Jesus? You'd have to do so much work and how many people would be convinced that it's Satan pretending to be Jesus? So then they'd be that battle. Those same people that think Michelle Obama has dick. There's gonna be people that think, [2:12:01] they're gonna think the nuttiest of things. And then Jesus's gonna be like, guys, guys, guys, I am not Satan. I'm actually Jesus. Nobody believe him. We would fucking crucify him again. And then people would be like, God damn it, we did it again. We did it again. We could have kept him around and learned from him. And now they're gonna have to rewrite Christianity. Every few thousand years he comes back and they fucking kill him again. That's the cycle of life. Well that would be that's the really scary thing to think that if the son of God really did return, if that is a real true thing, how the fuck would we ever believe that? We don't believe anything anymore. Yeah. I mean the tradition right is this trumpet is gonna sound and You think the trumpet in the sky the way it convinced us the government that's air horns. They're tricking us Yeah, this is the ultimate false flag the Jesus returns false flag I mean that's what a lot of people think is going on with the UFO reports. Yeah, yeah They think it's bullshit. They think it's the government and the government's lying to us about that they're from another planet [2:13:05] You know, which is well? No bullshit, they think it's the government. And the government's lying to us about that they're from another planet, you know? Which is, well, they lie about everything. Like if they're telling you something, if this is, these are off-world crafts, I'm like, oh, when did we make these? Like shut the fuck up, when did we make these? You're seeing they're at it from another planet? For real? I don't believe you. I mean, it could be a case of crying wolf, like maybe they're telling the truth, but boy, seems a little suspicious. And that would be the same thing with the Jesus thing. Like if Jesus really did come back and there was some fundamental Christianist, fundamentalist Christians that were in government that wanted the world to know, so they had a press conference and we have definitive proof that Jesus has returned and we need to listen to him. Everybody be like, get the fuck out of here. No one would believe it. That's what's crazy about today. If Jesus came back today and the world was in the middle of chaos, if we're in the middle of World War III and Jesus returns us a real likelihood that they would crucify him again, or something similar, real likelihood. He falls in the wrong group of people, [2:14:01] the modern day version of the Romans, right? You could fall in the wrong group of people. And like if Jesus like accidentally landed in ISIS country, can you imagine? I don't know if it would be an accident, but okay. Right, probably not an accident. But maybe you know Jesus is just like, let me just go down there and it wasn't specific enough. And God didn't say like, where do you want to go? Like send me to Manhattan. No. He said just bring me to earth and you've just dropped him off right in nicest camp. Oh yeah that'd be very dangerous. Yeah. Yeah. And then the whole thing starts all over again. Yeah. And then we have to tell the story about the guy who came from God, he was God's son and ISIS killed him. I don't think we've changed that much since the Pharisees and Sadducees and all that. I mean, we've changed a little, but I think so much of our change is... But not a human nature change. Right. That's what's going to so much of our change is technological. So much of our change in society and wooden buildings and concrete structures and roads and... Metal forks. ...phones and metal forks. Yeah. That's what's changed. [2:15:03] But the actual tissue is real similar. It's real similar to people that lived 10,000 years ago. So if we've got the human nature like more suppressed now than it's ever been before, but like we were talking about earlier, if you're in a crowd situation when things go chaos, then you go, oh, we're still this thing. We're still a program for war thing we're still a program for war We're still program for chaos. It's all in us. Yeah Yeah, and mob mentality all of it's it's all it'll change the absolutely change when they're in a group There's dynamics are always different. I think you see it online too I think mob mentality exists not even just in a physical space But I think it exists in a digital space too. I think when people gang up on people online on Twitter and those kind of things, I think that's the same thing. I think it's the same kind of mob mentality. It's the same sort of energy that is in us. It's very creepy. It's very creepy and it's one of those things where it's you're like, how do we ever get that out? [2:16:06] How do we ever get these ancient primate inclinations out of the modern human organism? I think if we had an answer for that, that we would be very, very wealthy. Maybe the government would kill you. It would be hard to control people if you had the answer to that. Yeah, I think for individuals, the most important thing is exercise. It's one of the most important It would be hard to control people if you had the answer to that. I think for individuals, the most important thing is exercise. It's one of the most important things I should say. Because you can induce enough stress voluntarily that the regular stress of the outside world is mitigated. Because you've already experienced a higher level of difficulty in your day by choice than the world can impose upon you. So if you have rigorous workout schedules, if you like to run, if you want to lift weights, if you want to do yoga, like you want to do something to jitsu, do something that's physically taxing, that's what you should do. Do something like that, and the physical act of forcing yourself [2:17:01] to do something extremely difficult that makes you uncomfortable for a short period of time, but makes the rest of the day much easier. That's what it is. You got to just feed the monkey inside of you. You got to like, don't deny its existence. Just do something to that thing to calm it down. Give it food. You know? Yeah. I wonder statistically those of us who exercise if we are less inclined to get online and terrorize other people in mom mentality. I would guess that maybe true. I would bet that's true. A lot of the people that I know that terrorize people in mom mentality, they're extremely unhealthy. They look terrible. They get addicted to it and they get addicted to interacting online on Twitter all the time and like gauging the you know, the temperature socially of how people think about them based on these like verbose bullshit that just typed on Facebook. But it's like, it becomes this integral part of the way they engage with other human beings. And it's very non-human. It's very recent. It's very non-human. [2:18:01] It's too limited in the way you interact with it. It's just so you can get good information online and you can get interesting discussions on Twitter but you could also get it like, you're dealing with legitimately, mentally ill people. And I don't use that term lightly, okay? I'm not saying schizophrenic, I'm not saying manic depressive, but if you are a person that has a gambling addiction, if you're a person that has an addiction to betting on the horses, you're mentally ill. You have this thing you're sick with, all right? If you can't stop smoking cigarettes, you're mentally ill. You have this thing that you can't stop. You're physically attracted to it. You're physically addicted to it, but you're also mentally ill because you don't recognize you should stop before you get fucking lung cancer, right? That's the same thing with everything, I think. I think these are just like normal patterns and I think people that are addicted to arguing with people on Twitter, they're mentally ill. This is serving the same thing as online poker. [2:19:00] This is serving the same thing as filling the blanks, whatever you like to do that you probably shouldn't be doing, scratch tickets, lottery, whatever it is that you just can't get out of your head because you got locked into it, you're mentally ill. You're mentally ill, just like when you have a cough, you're physically ill. Yeah, when you're online 12 hours a day, arguing with people, you're mentally ill. And maybe you're mentally ill and having good discussions. Maybe you're mentally ill. And maybe you mentally ill end having good discussions. Maybe you're mentally ill end engaging in sometimes productive conversations. But you're also, you're heightening your levels of anxiety and this bizarre, non-natural way of interfacing with other human beings. And you're living in that most of the time. So you're, you're going to suffer in the way you interact with people on a regular basis and you see that bleed out too right you see people like act like they're on Twitter into people in real life and they're like what the fuck is wrong with you like why are you acting like this because they're so used to communicating like that on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram that they think it's normal to just be completely rude to people. Yeah can you can't do that in the wilderness. Right. [2:20:05] There's not enough a star section to do that in the wilderness. Right. And you can't do that face to face because it feels weird. Yeah. If you talk to people face to face the way people talk to people just constantly on Twitter, you would have fist fights everywhere. People would be just fighting. They'd be pushing each other, hitting each other. You'd have murders. Like, it's just a shitty way to talk. So if you're doing that, you're mentally ill. So if you have gangs of mentally ill people that are just constantly engaging with other gangs of mentally ill people, online all day long, arguing over everything, cultural, everything, environmental, filling the blanks, climate change, filling the blank, Ukraine, whatever it is, pals, the free pals, time, fuck you. It's all day long. Mentally ill people. Yeah. And I think China's laughing at us. [2:21:01] Oh, they said that they, yes. I mean, I don't know if they said it all out, but they have infiltrated it. They have done a wonderful job. I say, try it out. I say. Yeah. Way to go. That ticked talk, I guess. Very effective. Fucking genius. Yeah. Well, you've done as genius. Yeah, I mean, they've definitely infiltrated universities. They definitely, they'd grant funds, they put money into things, they donate to things. It's what they've done as a wild. It's wild. And I would say that the same, I guess, impulsives that make people do what everything you're describing are really the same things that keep people in cults. Like, there was a lot of the similar traits of people who become mentally ill because they are constantly only focusing on one person's definition of anything. Yes. So if Colts were online doing that to each other, that's what they would sound like. Most certainly, when Mark Andreessen again talked about that as well, he said they have, if you look like the woke people online, they have all the characteristics of a cult. [2:22:04] They have excommunications, they'll savagely attack former members. Yeah. They have rules and there's things that you, there's a suspension of disbelief that you have to use in order to adopt certain things. You have to be willing to say things you know aren't really true and they all get you to do it. You know? Well, because it's part of the end group, right? Yeah. Like that's how you get status. Yeah, but it's just fascinating to see how far that stuff goes up, you know? Like even with like people that run universities, like they believe it. People that are in Congress, they believe it. It's like Jesus. Like this is, we're all the cult. Cult thinking is not like I think people have this thing in their head that cults are like small groups of people that are gullible. No. And I don't think that's true. I think I think you could have a cult of 150 million people easy. Easy. If you have someone controlling your behavior, your information, your thoughts, [2:23:04] and your emotions then. Yeah. And if you have a good system behavior, your information, your thoughts, and your emotions, then. Yeah, and if you have a good system set up where everybody polices everybody else, like woke people on Twitter, and then you have a good system of the person who's in charge and the underlings and all the other people, and people are benefited from it in a good way. Yeah, you can get a bunch of businesses going, you can infiltrate corporations with this nonsense, you can get a bunch of businesses going, you can infiltrate corporations with this nonsense, you can get in the Supreme Court. It's, you can do wild things with it. You just need to have like a strong structure of support from the other members online. Yeah, you just need to get people to police each other and place themselves. Yeah, that's the big one, right? That's the North Korean model. Polique people to police themselves. Yeah, people to rat on each other. Who? Yeah, I think we just came full circle on that. Yeah, I think your story is very important for people to hear. And I'm really happy that you had to encourage to say it because I would imagine it would be very, very hard [2:24:02] to tell that story. Very hard to explain the vulnerabilities that you experienced and what it was like to be this 17 year old kid, is still a kid who's like, you know, just coming a woman out there in the world and you just escaped from a cult where you could even see movies and all you sung was hymns and you thought the end was near and then you're out there in the world just interacting with all these people that went to like normal schools and Had normal childhood American experiences and you have to kind of relearn everything Yeah, and there's a lot of ex-communication that still goes on in terms of It's my family of origin. It's all every single cousin. I had was raised there I did not have any cousins on the other side 100% of my of my relatives were raised in there. And so, yeah, you have to be willing to, in a sense, step away from the acceptance that you get, which I think had to relate to many, many, many, many people who have nothing to do with religion. But yeah, all the different types of cults in the world is like being willing to stand back and say, wait, I don't believe this. I think your story is really important to for people [2:25:06] that may be vulnerable. Maybe they don't have the tools to discern. Like maybe they're being courted by a group. They don't have the tools to discern. Like why? And just fundamentally, if someone's telling you that they have secret information that only they have and it comes from a mystical source. Either it comes from aliens or it comes from God or probably not. It's probably not, it's probably not. I mean, it might be Jesus. Again, if Jesus came back, who's gonna believe him? But most likely you're dealing with someone who's full of shit. So at least today, we know that. In 1930, when you grandpa first started I mean here's this running wild like there's no Wikipedia You can say anything you could just go or Joseph Smith who created the book of Mormon You know like that fucking guy. He was like 14 years old. Wow. Yeah [2:26:01] Like that fucking guy. He was like 14 years old. Oh wow. Yeah. Teddy found gold and tablets that contained the loss work of Jesus. But only he could read it because he had a magic rock. And everybody's like, okay. Yeah. That's the kind of thing my grandfather said too and ends people believed it. There was a lot of those guys back then. Yeah, you could weigh a lot back then. What do you think is the motivation? What is it about human beings and almost always men? There's only a few women that have been successful cult leaders. Yes, but it's pretty rare. Yeah, the one that was on the HBO documentary, I haven't seen it yet, but everybody raves about it. You know what I'm talking about? I do, but I haven't seen it. The lady became anorexic. What is it love? What was that one, Jamie? What's it called? It's supposed to be amazing, but I haven't seen it. But what is it that that seems to be a recurring pattern? So I've always wanted really fascinating to say that anyone could be a cult member. Anyone could fall for that, especially if you're young. [2:27:02] But it's who would become a cult leader? Like that's the bigger question. It was Jim Jones. All right. I feel like there's no simple answer for that. But in my grandfather's case, and in many other of these young men cases, they were outsiders in some way, and they had some bone to pick. And they wanted, I think they maybe started out of wanting belonging, but then they got really drunk on the power so quickly. Like Manson. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So I've been teaching in prisons, by the way. It's part of my, well, it's been part of my career. And I worked with Lesson Van Houghton, who was a, I mean, she's been released now, but she was the tutor in the program I was working in. And, you know, she was like, what, 19, when she committed these, participated in, but she followed Manson as if he was a cold leader. It was very similar and I'm not like talking about the politics of all that or like, I'm just saying that I mean, I'm very grateful that nobody asked me to kill anybody, you know? I'm not, I would like to think I wouldn't, but I don't think any of us know. Right, if you were 12 years old and your whole life you'd lived in that cult and you were told to kill some anxies of demon. Right. And if you kill them and they were like hugging you, you did it. You saved us. You saved us from the demon. You'd be [2:28:11] pumped. Yeah. I think it would be. Of course. Children like that are if you especially if you get trained in armies of that. Exactly. Exactly. Exactly. Exactly. And then I mean, that's also why people like people joining the army when they're young, not just because they're strong, but also because they're mentally unaware of the conflicts of the world. It's really difficult to get a 60 year old man to go to war based on, we found weapons of mass destruction. Okay, the put on is reading glasses. Let me see this shit. What do you got? Show me what the fuck you got. I'm gonna fly to Afghanistan. Show me what you have. Yeah. Yeah. See, you need them. Yes, sir. We're gonna kill the bad guy, sir. That's what you need. But the cult leaders have something that they really feel like they need. Like they need people's respect because like I don't think they could get it in other ways. Right. And so they create this whole world. And [2:29:00] honestly, once people start believing it's probably a pretty big high. Yeah. Um, I had David Holthouse on the podcast of the day, and he did that documentary series that's on peacock about the Harry Christianis, and about this one guy that created this sect of the Harry Christianis, and it was, it was all child molestation and murder. He's, they're killing people, and it's just, it's a crazy, it's a really good doc, he's a really good director and the documentary series is really interesting, but it's just like, God damn, that pattern just repeats itself over and over, a wake-o, holy hell, up there, wild, wild country, it's like everywhere, the same sort of pattern repeats itself and it always, almost always, at least, falls apart. It's hard to keep that stuff going because... You're a crazy person. Yeah, and you have to keep up in the ante. Right. It's not like Warren Buffett. He's not out there starting calls. It's not like people are good at organizing businesses. It's like crazy people, like wild, crazy people. But there's this inclination to get people to follow you and to tell them what to do and to tell [2:30:05] them how to live life and to make them worship you. It was fucking strange that that's just some sort of weird evolutionary response. Because in tribal cultures, there was always a leader. And that leader was generally the wisest person who had the most life experience. Who could tell you, hey, this is the plant you can't eat. Don't go over there, they'll kill you. You know, this thing runs faster than you. Get away from it. That's next poisonous. Like, you had to know how to make an arrow. You know, this guy knew. So that was your leader. And if you listen to him, you're going to stay alive. And if you don't listen to him, you're gonna watch people die right next to you and you go, oh, they didn't listen. And you're gonna experience that at a young age where people die because they used to die all the fucking time. Of course. Yeah, just infant mortality was like 50% back then. And then you're like, what are the odds you're gonna live to 30? Not so good, bro. This jaguar is in the fucking trees. Like you're fucked. You You're in trouble. And that's why we had tribal leaders. And then as we expanded into these societies and cities [2:31:08] and large groups of human beings, we still have the desire to have one individual leader because we have this primate genetic imprint in us of the alpha who runs the people. To the point where we'll pretend that someone's alpha, like we'll pretend Joe Biden is really running the country. We'll pretend. And so many democrats are all in on it like the most culty of cult members the wokest of woke are the ones who are the most likely to try to fucking gaslight you that he's fine and he's doing great and he's the best president ever and just look at the economics and look at the economy's doing better and look at the you know know, he's on top. He's never been sharper. Like, what do you shut up? You're in a cult. You're in a cult. Just like if you were in the moonies, just like you've been in the Holy Hell cult, it's the same thing. It's just patterns of belief and we all have them. And we're susceptible to them because life is a massive mystery. It's a massive scary, weird mystery with a lifespan. It's got a finite lifespan. [2:32:05] You have a certain amount of time here and you never think like you have enough time, you never think you did enough, and it always feels weird. And you never even know what the fuck is going on, while you're driving your car or sitting on the bus, the whole time, you're like, what is this? What is this all about? So anytime you can get some relief from that. Someone comes along and they go, I've got the answers. Right. Come with me Michelle. Okay, so that's not happening anymore. No, of course not. But you know, when you said that to us thinking like it is, is that the belief that there's answers instead of what I think, I think you and I believe, is that it's always more questions. Like we don't have the answers and we will, there will be continuing, there'll be questions that we never answer in our lifetime. Well, also we exist in a certain frequency in reality. But there's subatomic reality that's so damn confusing, that somehow another part of us, that we can study. [2:33:02] Like, what's all that magic? What's all that magic going on? Well, you got particles that are both moving and still, they exist and reappear, they disappear, we don't know where the fuck they're going. What's happening there? What is that stuff? What's all that stuff? There's so much that we don't know. There's so much weirdness just in the observable universe that it's the whole thing is a crazy mystery and to not approach it that way and to approach it with some bizarre confidence that you have the answers. You're not doing anybody any good because you're full of shit. You're full of shit with yourself, you're full of shit. If you believe it, you're full of shit with yourself. You're're definitely full shit with other people if you're telling them you believe it. You can't know. We have guidelines and there's ways that we can live that are going to be better for everybody and we should definitely go that way. Definitely don't try to harm people, definitely try to be nice as much as possible, try to be cool to your friends, try to enjoy your time here, try to leave people with a smile, try to do your best, do all that stuff. [2:34:06] If we do all that stuff, we're good. But as soon as someone comes along and tells you, no, you have to do this because this is the word of God, like, be suspicious. Because it's been around before. It's not like this is a unique thing. I feel like Bees suspicious is some good advice. Bees is spacious. Yeah. Bees is spacious of anybody that's trying to get you to do things. Like they're trying to tell you to do a thing. And that if you don't do a thing, you're a bad person. And the people that are engaging in other things other than what they're telling you are all going to hell. I'm like, okay, let me put my ring glass on. Let me see this hell. You've got a fucking YouTube video I can watch. Like, how much do you know? How are you sure? Do you have the GPS coordinates? I did the ONX maps of hell. I don't think you know what you're talking about. [2:35:01] And if you don't say that, if you don't have the humility to say that this is at the very least a massive mystery. We know so much. I mean, we know so much more than we've ever known before. And thank God there's people out there that are trying to figure the world out. Thank God there's people out there that are doing the work and doing the fucking theoretical physicists and all the quantum mechanics people and all the people that are trying to make rocket ships think I'm you're out there. But at the end of the day, this is a crazy mystery that you go to bed every night. You close your eyes and you disappear. Hopefully for eight hours, if you're getting your eight hours Michelle, and then that alarm clock goes off, and then you re-engage with reality and assume that this is the exact same world that you went to bed eight hours ago for. You assume, but you just re-engage with reality. We look forward to it. Everyone's scared to die, but no one's scared to sleep. And we do [2:36:01] it every night. No one's scared. Now I don't want to shut the light out. I don't want to go to sleep. No one's scared to go to sleep.'t want to shut the lights out. I don't want to go to sleep. No one's scared to go to sleep. Everybody's like, oh my god, I can't wait to sleep. Can't wait to sleep and be recovered. And then you get up, you have to do it. It's a requirement. You have to go out. You have to stop. If you don't, you'll die. it for long stretches of time. Yeah. Ideally eight hours. That's so I hear. Yeah, full 30 a day. Yeah. It's a wild thing. Yeah, full 30 a day. You reboot. Yeah. We process in our dreams from ways that we don't understand. It's very strange. Yeah. It's very strange. Just that alone is very strange. There's many, many strange things. Yeah, but that alone is a strange, strange one that we've just accepted. Because if that didn't exist and all of a sudden everybody said, listen, we have found a new thing, instead of just being awake all the time, if you can just go to sleep, you'll live longer and you'll be better. Like, what are you talking about? Like, you're just going to shut off for eight hours. [2:37:01] And then what happens to me? Like, can I see? No. What if someone breaks in my house? Well, you're asleep. Fuck that. No one would want to do that. Yeah. But it's normal. So we just do it. Yeah. Yeah. It's a mystery. This is a crazy ass mystery. And what happens in your dreams? Like, why are those damn things so realistic? What the fuck is going on in dreams? One thing happens if you smoke pot, your dreams kind of dull a little bit sometimes, but if you take long breaks off, like we do sober October and during sober October, we don't do anything. And when you take long breaks off, you get wild dreams, wild. And here's a little pro tip. If you wanna have the wildest dreams, take neutropics before you go to bed. Take like alpha brain before you go to bed. Because you want to have these dreams? Yeah, let's go. Okay. I would eat one of those little kids. I used to love nightmares. When I was a little kid, I looked forward to a nightmare. [2:38:01] I would try to make me have one. Wow. Cause I like horror movies. So I was like, let's have a, let's get some monsters in here. I was literally like, go to bed. I was like, oh my God, oh my God, it's a fuck scared out of me. I looked forward to like having a nightmare dream. Wow. I had a bunch of crazy ones too, that I remember. I even wrote like plot of movies, they were so crazy. But it just was a thing where I thought of it as like an adventure ride. I thought of like nightmares as an adventure ride. Like I knew I kept waking up. So okay, all right, after I was like four or five, I'm like, yeah, I'm waking up so I know they're not real. But it is pretty fun if they're scary. If I can just relax. So I was thinking that, I remember thinking that as a little kid, thinking like I think it's a way to just make yourself have nightmares and just do it for fun, just like watching a scary movie. Wow. Is any of that lucid dreaming? I've only done lucid dreaming accidentally a couple of times and every time I've done it I've recognized that I'm dreaming and [2:39:02] then I wake up because I recognize it. That's the problem. I don't know how to chill. Do you remember most of your dreams? No, I remember a lot of them though. I don't remember most of them. I would say I remember a small fraction of them, but I remember them for a long time. Yeah. What about you? I do, I remember a lot of dreams. I mean, I could never, I know nobody would know if you remember all of them for one. Right. How do you know? I was no. But yeah, I still dream about the field. Really? That makes sense. Yeah. Yeah. Because it's in your subconscious and you just like, I'm still processing. I didn't have a bad time in high school. It wasn't the worst. I had a pretty good time in high school But I would have nightmares that I had to go back to high school like legitimate nightmares that like I didn't get enough credits So I didn't graduate so I had to go back Nightmares and high school was not that bad now. I can't imagine How much that would be multiplied leaving a cult at 17 year? [2:40:02] They're very formative years those years still like even Yeah, the reformative and your prefrontal cortex is not completely formed. And so we probably all go back to whatever degree to that part of us. But those nightmares must be very vivid for you though, and must be very extreme. Cause like I said, I would get nightmares from high school, which was nothing. It was no big deal. It wasn't bad at all. I didn't have a bad time in high school. But it was just the idea of being trapped in that fucking school and other year was scary. And that's nothing. Yeah, it's the being trapped. I have a lot of dreams like that. Yeah. Whew. Did they subside with time? They've gotten better. You know, so I just two days ago, I met this guy who I hadn't seen since I was a kid. So for me, I kind of met him for the first time in the sense of, I don't remember him. But he said that reading for a juror, and he really said this, and it was, he said he had nightmares. He's always had nightmares. This man is late 60s, probably maybe in 70, I don't know. And he said that reading it stopped his nightmares because he thinks because somebody validated, [2:41:06] so he didn't feel like it was trapped and it was had anymore. Someone validated and named his experience because he wasn't talking about it. Not even to his whole life he's never talked about it. And so having just singing in a book made him say like, I'm not crazy, you know? And so I just wonder sometimes if our nightmares are also, I mean, it's great that you were like causing ones on purpose, but the kinds that are like really deeply disturb us. I just wonder if they're parts of us that we haven't fully come to terms with. I don't know. I wonder, but some of mine is like, God's ill-chasing me when I'm on skateboard. They don't make any sense. I think. That doesn't sound that scary. I think there's certainly, I mean, I don't try to have nightmares now. I really only did that a few times when I was a kid. But the nightmares that I do have, that almost all of them are like really primal ones. Like I've had a lot of nightmares about wolves, like a lot over the years. Like running from wolves. [2:42:00] There's something about wolves because they're intelligent and they operate in packs and they have some sort of nonverbal communication where they understand each other and some very They're similar to us in a lot of ways. Yeah. Yeah. They They freak me out They really do you know, they're not that different from dogs. Yeah, they're a lot different from dogs They're a lot different. Well, they are because they're wild, but I have a golden retriever. Okay, they're way different than a golden retriever. I have a strange shoppers and my dog is a love sponge. He loves everybody. If he came in here, you're part of his pack. Oh, yeah, no doubt, but he's on a wolf. Okay. There's a big difference. I mean, he used to be a wolf. If you go back 20,000 years ago, whatever it was when they started taking these bitch ass wolves, were willing to come by the forest fire or by the campfire rather. But the wolves that live and operate in the wild are these ruthless, majestic creatures who are intelligent. Right. But the reason that you love your dog is the same reason that wolves love each other. [2:43:05] You know, I mean, there is this because they're part of a pack and because they understand relationships. And I think the wolves with each other, you just not in relationship with the wolf, but right. I mean, of course they're scary. But yeah, but they're because they're so good at what they do. Right. But that's why we're scared of deer. Oh, yeah. Yeah. That's why we're scared of deer. Well, yeah. Yeah, we're in the woods with a rifle. Deer should be fucking scared. Yeah, and that's why they jump. And that's why they're running away real quick. And that's the thing with wolves and human beings. We've been food for them for a long time. That's what little red riding ends all about. That's really, that's what the big bad wolf is all about. That's the whole story. The story is about wolves that will eat your kids because that's what they did. They eat people. World War One had to be, they had a ceasefire between the Germans and the Russians because too many of them were getting eaten by wolves. That's why they had a ceasefire? Yeah, they had a ceasefire. [2:44:00] And they killed the wolves and then went back to killing each other. They couldn't have just like taken a break and said like, well maybe we should be on the same side. No, they were losing so many people to wolves that they had these packs of wolves in Russia. And this was trench warfare. So they were the horrific wounds. So these people would be lying in the trenches with a bullet hole and then you'd hear wolves tearing these people apart and they'd be screaming. Yeah, they would send people out on patrol and just find a boot with a foot in it. Oh my God. Yeah. You should be scared of wolves. You should be scared of wolves. Yeah, I mean they're reintroducing wolves now to Colorado. They just did and they just had the first wolf depredation where wolf killed a calf at a ranch and that's just the beginning. There's a reason why they killed those things. I don't think they should have, I don't think they should have made wolves extinct in the Western United States like they did. They think it was horrible. They put strict nine in horses and they left them out there and the wolves would eat it and die. They did horrible, terrible things. [2:45:01] But you don't want wolves. You don't want them around. You don't want a lot of them, especially with these bitch ass people today. They just, you're gonna fucking lose a lot of folks. If those things get to high numbers, you're gonna lose a lot of folks. A lot of people gonna be camping, they're gonna get surrounded. Just needs certain numbers. Needs numbers where they think they can get away with stuff like that. Numbers where there's not enough people with guns, they find out that they think people are just hikers, they don't seem to have any weapons, they know where the weapon is, they figure that out. Over time, we'll see enough rifles, they know what a rifle is, they're not stupid. They're not stupid. They're scary animals, but they're also amazing. But you gotta keep an eye on him. If it, people that live in cities don't think that. It goes back to be suspicious. I've seen for today be suspicious. Well, be suspicious of systems, right? Because that, that is a system of predator and prey. And if you're having a hard time walking up that hill, guess what? Get some sugar on there. Get some sugar on. [2:46:00] You think you're as a predator? Well, you're not. You're not. You can't even get up the hill. Wolf's run up the hill, like it's nothing. Like we, they just fucking go over that hill, like it ain't shit. They're gonna run 45 miles an hour, chase you down, eat you stupid. Be suspicious. Be suspicious. Did they teach you guys when you were doing the survival training, how to like do everything, like get water, hunt for food, make your own fire, and not to have a- I know how to distill water in a pit from plants and how to distill urine and all that great stuff. Wow. Yeah, it's not really a very practical skill that you don't really have to do that. Not a daily basis. But if you know how to distill water, it's pretty wise. Yeah, I mean, you can do a lot with dew. Just like by putting, you do need a piece of plastic. You can use like a rain jacket or like a windbreaker or whatever, but you put it, you dig a pit and you put all the vegetation and like whatever you can get even in the desert. Like if you can get, you know, y it rises, you need to collect it, and then you can collect the dew. And it's fine. [2:47:06] So you get it off the bottom surface of the plastic? Yeah, but you make a little like pool of it. And yeah. Yeah. Damn. Yeah, and you can survive up of that. Wow. How much water can you get out of dew? Well, it depends on how. Ideally, you have more than one pit of this, but you are going to have some point, move on a little in forage where there's more plants. And you also, of course, want to know what plants can give you water until you can find a source of water. What's the good ones? The like which good plants? What's the good ones that give you water? Any, the darker green and the bigger the leaf, but in the desert, generally, if you have the things that give you a lot of water, are already at water sources, right? Because that's their water rich. So it's in the desert where you need it. And anything that has, I mean, cactus can give you water, but it's, you're not going to get as much dew as you do off of, let's say, sage brush. Yeah. So sage bushes. Yeah, you can get pit, you don't bury them like they would grow. [2:48:06] You leave them like lush. So you dig this pit so you can use it over and over. And you take the brush and you put it in the pit and then you cover it with whatever, you know, sort of plastic you have. If you have a tarp that's great, I just don't know why you'd have a And so it's just sucking the water out of that plant as it dehydrates in the heat with the plastic over it in the water. Yeah, but it's overnight. So it's not really the heat. I mean, it's, yeah. So it'll, like, you've seen condensation, like even on your car, right? And so you're just collecting that. That's just a source of collecting it. And you put more of How much can you get? Well, I mean if you get a quarter cup, you're pretty lucky. But you just can't move around a lot if you don't want to dehydrate. But if you do that enough, you can live. You'll survive for a while. Water is really important, way more important than food. Yeah. I mean, you know that. Yeah. He could survive a long time without food. [2:49:00] Yeah. We talked about this dude that was really fat and he went on a fasting diet with IV vitamins and he did it for 300 and something. Yeah, because they give you a whole year if you're heavy enough. Yeah. But most people could go a month pretty easily. Yeah. Like even if you're not fat. Yeah, you'd look like shit. Yeah, of course. Of course. But you could live. You could live. You could live. Yeah. Yeah Yeah, yeah, wow I'm sure you hope you don't ever have to use those skills. I do hope that and I am sure my skills are not as good as they used to be Yeah, but just what you've told so far of the shit is the fan. I'm calling you you should I I mean how many years did you have to learn that stuff? I mean I learned them for a lot of years and it gets inside of you And I think that's the thing about muscle memory, right? And I believe in exercise, by the way, too. I mean, I was trained like that's why I can't not exercise. And I think that just like exercise, like I'm sure you feel like you don't exercise. And as do I. But I also feel like when it those things that you're not really fully human. I at least I feel that way. Wow [2:50:07] Yeah, I like to eat off the earth even now Like when I can you know I still for I mean that's what pic next about No, I've been like actually picking things out of the ground that I didn't plant I mean gardening I mean you know like forging off the land if you know what to eat sure Really great to have something that grew there naturally like in DigiNos plants. Yeah, it's rewarding. If you could find a blueberry bush and pick blueberries, it's rewarding. Yeah, elderberries. Yeah, I think it's a part of our past too. Like in our DNA, you get excited to find the first one. Yeah, every chapter of my book has like these descriptions of something you can eat in the Angel Sanctiophores. Oh really? Yeah, I mean not to say that somebody would need a little bit of training. Like I'm not advocating that you just go out there and like, you know, but I mean, if you know what you're doing, yeah. Yeah, yo, you hear that with mushrooms, like people fuck up and they eat the wrong mushrooms and they want to die in. Yeah. Mushrooms are scary. They are. There's a lot of them that will kill you. Yes, and then there's a lot of them that will keep you alive. Yeah. So if you're going to survive, you should know the difference. [2:51:06] Yeah. You see this, our garicon that Paul Stan was gaming? This is a giant one. Wow. That's a real mushroom. Yeah. Oh my God. It's huge. Let me see. Check it out. Wow. Came off Incredible. No, that's don't eat it. No, you don't eat that one. That one's staying on a date. I'm just giving you some advice. No, no, but he sells them in pills. Well, actually, yeah, his company is called host defense. You get it in pill form. It's good for your immune system. All right. So, it's foraging, I think. I think so too. Yeah, I'm sure I'm sure even just getting dirt on you and being in the wild and like that's what we're supposed to do right like being in sterile Environments probably the worst thing for your immune system. Yeah, I mean that's actually been studying to you Yeah, like just sort of like exercise right like if you don't exercise your atrophy If you don't experience some other Organisms we're we're host of organisms. We're not all interconnected. Yes. We're all interconnected [2:52:05] Listen, I really enjoyed this conversation. Thank you. I've enjoyed it too. Your journey is remarkable. It's very unusual. And I think you came out of the other end a very interesting person. Thank you. And I really appreciate you being here. Thanks for having me, honest. Been a wonderful, hanging out with you. I enjoyed it very much. Thank you. Oh, so tell everybody how to get your book. Oh, right. So for your field notes first surviving a family cult, it's available anywhere books are sold. So get it online and... Do you have social media? Do you have Instagram? I do. I have Instagram. I'm on Substack. I am on Twitter, but not a whole lot. What is your Instagram? Michelle Dowd Z. Michelle Dowd Z? Yeah, this is the other one. God, all right, beautiful. It wasn't the first Michelle Dowd, and it was really unfortunate. Well, thank you very much. I really enjoyed it. Thank you. All right, bye everybody. Bye.