Whirled Musings

Across the Universe with Cosmic Connie, aka Connie L. Schmidt...or maybe just through the dung-filled streets and murky swamps of pop culture -- more specifically, the New-Age/New-Wage crowd, pop spirituality & religion, pop psychology, self(ish)-help, business babble, media silliness, & related (or occasionally unrelated) matters of consequence. Hope you're wearing boots. (By the way, the "Cosmic" bit in my moniker is IRONIC.)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Rat here, rat now

You might say it all began when Harrison "Hairy" Palms entered an altered state. But Palms, author of the Ratavar® Materials, is quick to deny that he is the creator of this amazing technology that literally holds the key to the secrets of the Universe. "I am only the vehicle," he says modestly, stroking the bushy and now-graying beard that earned him his nickname.

Even before discovering Ratavar®, Palms was somewhat of a visionary. A research lab worker by day, he was an artist and writer by night. "But I was becoming more and more dissatisfied with my day job," he explains. "And I was growing increasingly doubtful about the morality of what the lab was doing to the research animals. My position was Assistant Animal Handler, Rodent Division; it was my job to go around each day and interact with the white rats in order to keep them accustomed to human handling.

"Traditionally, rats have been looked down upon as symbols of death, disease and destruction, but in the lab I came to know them for what they really are: intensely intelligent beings with the same divine spark that breathes in us all."

The growing moral anguish and the generally unfulfilling nature of laboratory work finally became too much, so Hairy resigned his position in the late 1970s and began what was to become a decade of studying the nature of creativity and consciousness.

"I'd always been fascinated with creativity and the process of creation, particularly the spiritual aspect of creation," he says. He began reading about all of the major spiritual traditions of the East and the West. Meanwhile he continued to create his art, and he became renowned for his Ars Rodentia series – brilliant, critically acclaimed finger paintings of mandalas with rat motifs.

In the late 1980s, Palms began a series of sensory deprivation experiments to determine how mental and spiritual states might be affected by lack of sensory stimuli. He took to floating in an isolation tank, and would sometimes float for days at a time. It was in this tank, at the end of a five-day float, that Palms had his epiphany. It came in the form of a vision, and the vision appeared in the form of, not surprisingly, a giant luminous rat. The rat telepathically communicated this message to Hairy: You have a mission, and I will show you the way.

"In that one astounding moment I was struck with the wisdom that the rat is the ultimate universal metaphor for creation and the life force. And this is so on many levels. For example, the prodigious reproductive rate of rats, against unspeakable odds, is a symbol of how the divine creative force continues to shine on even throughout the darkest night of the human soul. And there's more. We all know that our belief systems create our reality, and here, too, we can learn from the rat. For the rat, with its habit of constantly gnawing, can be utilized as a symbol of how we must gnaw away at the unwanted belief systems that hold us back.

"We can't dissolve these negative thought-forms overnight by magic, but if we keep gnawing away at them we will ultimately destroy them, thereby freeing us to create the desired vision of our own personal reality. All of these revelations came instantaneously with that vision of the shining rat, which made me realize that rodent consciousness is a steppingstone to God-consciousness."

It was from this revelation in the flotation tank that Hairy Palms went on to create the Ratavar® Materials. Ratavar® grew explosively in California and quickly became a nationwide and then a worldwide phenomenon. Hundreds and soon thousands of students fell in step behind Hairy. People who had spent their entire lives wandering from one path to another finally found their spiritual "homes" (or, more appropriately, their "nests") in the teachings of Ratavar®. Palms became affectionately known as the Pied Piper of Universal Wisdom. As the technique and the courses evolved, Palms felt the need to move to Florida, where he formed Cheese Wedge, Inc., a center for research and development in creative consciousness, as well as a space for him to create his art and indulge himself in his new hobby of cheese making. It was also a campus for advanced training of Ratavar® Masters.

Ratavar® can only be taught by a Certified Ratavar® Master, but not to worry: there are Masters aplenty – over 3,000 worldwide, at last count. The cost of the complete series of courses, from the Basics through the Masters through the "Whizzers" – the highest level – is very reasonable: "less than a BMW, to put it in materialistic terms," Hairy explains.

But in reality, the value of the wisdom taught by Ratavar® cannot be measured in materialistic terms. For, as Hairy himself says, "Ratavar® allows you to finally, fully, really, wholly experience the being-ness of just being, the creativism of expansionism, the boundarylessness of floating within your own inner spaciousness, which is a sacred place far beyond intellect.

"The mission of Ratavar® in the world," he continues, "is to catalyze, or should I say ratalyze, the complete wholistic integration of belief systems, in order to break down false barriers that cause us to believe in the negativity of limitedness. Breaking these barriers empowers us to reclaim our thought-forms, allowing us to create and/or dis-create with ease our own personal / universal realities. We should all strive for this goal. Also we should all eat a lot more cheese."

© 1995, 2010 by Connie L Schmidt/Misguided Angel Press

My humblest apologies to the four or five people who may have previously read the preceding parody in my BLP (book-like product), Cosmic Relief. It’s just that I’ve been receiving emails from the Avatar® people lately – or, rather, from people who "deliver" Avatar® and want me to "experience" it – and that got me all inspired. Besides, recycling is a good thing, isn’t it?

And speaking of recycling, Avatar® (which in this case has nothing to do with 2D or 3D virtual alter egos; rather, it is the most famous bastard child of Scientology) has just celebrated its 20th anniversary. It's been an interesting two decades, to say the least, for, like most hucksters great spiritual leaders, Avatar® founder Harry Palmer has made a few enemies along the way. It’s too bad that his detractors can’t just leave him alone. All he really wants to do is create an EPC (Enlightened Planetary Civilization).

In any case, the piece above, like the rest of the stuff in Cosmic Relief, is not all that different from the original material. If you don’t believe it, just try making sense of anything written by Harry Palmer. F’rinstance, chew on this message from him to prospective "Wizards" (the suckers seekers taking one of Harry’s advanced and very pricey courses).

Or, as they say in Ratavar®: "Chew Ratavar...and then chew your dream!"

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Anonymous Eldon Braun said...

Well Connie,

Funny parody. I just found it while Googling.

It's interesting that you're getting sales hype from Avatar Masters. They've been conducting quite a sales drive lately to counter the negative PR coming down. Recently in Holland, an expose in Het Parool revealed that UWV, the main agency that handles unemployment benefits, has been funding Avatar courses as "job retraining programs." Some parliament representatives were not amused, and in investigation is now underway. To read the article translated into English, see:

Pretty much the same thing happened in France a little over ten years ago when it was discovered that a couple of Avatar Masters were selling the course to the French nuclear power agency under another name as management training. Here's a translated article about that:

BTW, if you would like to obtain copies of the Avatar courses for scholarly research, follow the instructions at www.avatarscam.com/

Friday, December 01, 2006 9:38:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmic Connie said...

Thanks for the compliments and the info, Eldon. I actually wrote that parody in the early 90s, when Avatar masters seemed to be under every rock. I hadn't heard much about Avatar since then, until lately -- and it seems nothing has changed.

Amazing how insidious this stuff is. The perpetrators talk about peace and love and enlightenment (at least that's what I think they're talking about; it's hard to make sense of their messages), but at their core they're all about power and money and more power.

Thanks again for writing!

Friday, December 01, 2006 10:50:00 AM  
Anonymous HoHaHe said...

Nice petition, I'm sure the gov. will find time to read it after he's finished dancing around in front of a 40ft owl.

Thursday, February 07, 2008 8:31:00 AM  
Anonymous HoHaHe said...

That's a splendid and inspiring story, by the way Cosmic Connie, demonstrating the natural genius of the aquarius in blending science, spirituality and monkeying around. Truly you are a child of our enlightened times demonstrating depth, mental dexterity and empathy for the sufferings of all mankind. Undoubtedly the sign of the waterbearer gifts the world with its brightest stars for the advancement of our role as cosmic starseed children. Yes, simply take a look at the great and inspiring genii that are your star-kin; Galileo, Mozart, Groening, Reagan...veritable meteors of creativity and enlightenment. (Hint hint birthday soon).

Saturday, February 09, 2008 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmic Connie said...

Groening -- one of my heroes. The world would be a far poorer place without "Life In Hell" and "The Simpsons." Thanks for the reminder, HHH!

Saturday, February 09, 2008 10:35:00 AM  

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