My Cousin Judy

 35 After graduating, the Job Corps helped me look for work, and before long it appeared I might find something. I started to feel a surge of independence—and relief—well up inside of me. But, I was soon saved from my plight, by my cousin Judy and her husband. And though it was well meaning, mostly on Judy's part, it was still quite meddlesome. It was my mother who had talked to my aunt, who in turn talked to my uncle, who both talked to Judy and her husband. And arrangements were made, more between my uncle and Judy's husband, without my knowledge, that I would live with Judy and her family during the interim. It was something I didn't find out until it was sprung on me at a baseball game I went to with my aunt and uncle and Judy's family. I really felt coerced.

 36 At the time, it seemed like what I needed was to get out on my own and gain a sense of independence: there had been a lot of meddling in my life. So the timing couldn't have seemed more presumptuous. Who were these people to be making decisions about me behind my back anyway? I really despised my uncle, who I never respected—come to find out he never divorced his first wife before marrying my aunt—and, Judy's husband for this. I view both men as egotistical: indeed it was preeminent that they feel in charge. Both were consumed with a lot of pride.

 37 So I spent the next three months with Judy and her family, in Cupertino, California. And for the first month I helped her husband paint the house, although I did most of the work. I didn't mind helping him, but it was apparent he thought he was manipulating me, and deriving satisfaction out of thinking he was getting away with it. So he made a big deal out of the $100 he was going to pay me, which wasn't much, and how it would be really educational and, a good work experience. I was just some dumb kid he thought he could impress with a few dollars.

 38 My cousin was very condescending towards me, like he was with the rest of his family. And he was basically dishonest: it seems the only satisfaction he could get from someone else's help was to feel he was cheating them. Like I said, he wanted to be sure everybody knew he was in charge. And he put on a big show, none other than the three ring circus it was, with him the ring master. And it was imperative that it was understood how successful he was. How he had a nice home in the suburbs, a family that emulated him, how he was a successful manager at a major electronics firm—and basically, how clever and skillful he was at everything! He did his utmost to impress me with this.

 39 It was my cousin Judy who suffered the most at his hands: dedicated housewife, mother of three and, second-class citizen, she was the long-suffering wife who had catered to his every whim for thirteen years. She wasn't the most attractive woman (not ugly), and judging by the way he behaved when other women came over, usually from work, I sensed he was cheating on her. I'm reminded of the movie, Diary of a Mad Housewife, where the husband is totally self-engrossed and self-serving, and demanding towards his wife; and he persecutes her and sets the children against her as well. Though their marriage didn't go to quite the same extreme, it had the same basic elements. And when you get right down to it, it wasn't that different from your typical middle-class family—which is really scary!

 40 Judy and I got along pretty well, though there really wasn't much between us. But I felt this way towards most everyone, having suffered a lot up to this point, and not feeling anybody understood me. Unlike her husband though, she was decent and respectful towards me, and in light of the circumstances, I don't know what else could have been expected. I think we both sensed something wrong with our lives though, but there wasn't much we could say. Aside from this, the only thing we really had in common was the fact that we were related.

  Tropical Fish / Aquarius

 41 Judy did have an interest in tropical fish, as I did a few years earlier. It was something we both could relate to, and we went to the fish store several times while I was there. It's interesting for it correlates with the account of Judith of Gerarai (n4:1), where I speak of the fish aquarium, along with the two signs of the zodiac—Aquarius (11) and Pisces (12). (See Penelope [n4:107].) It's also significant that I wasn't speaking of Judy when I developed Judith—nor did it even occur to me. I do refer to a cousin Judy, but I have another cousin named Judy, as I have two aunts, my mother's two half-sisters.

 42 Judy was also interested in house plants, and managed to get me interested, and gave me some cuttings from her plants. Of these the most predominant was called a Wandering Jew which, practically took over. And in the account of Judith (12) (n4:109), I say Judith is the feminine of Judah, the founder of the Jewish tribe. And, that Judith portrays the New Church, which corresponds to Dionysus as well. And by giving me this plant, it tended to symbolize this.

  New Job / Apartment

 43 After painting the outside of their house, which seems fitting for I equate Judith with the exterior of a house (n4:119), I found a job doing electronics assembly, and started to save my money. About a month later, my aunt and mother came down from Santa Rosa, to the big barbecue my cousins were having. And I told my aunt how unhappy I was, and how I had become depressed—and how I wanted out of there! I confided in her because she was someone I trusted, and was one of the only people who helped me out as a teenager. Then again it was Semele's sister, Ino, who was charged with Dionysus' upbringing after Semele was destroyed (n11:163). They were only there a few days, but during this time my aunt helped me find an apartment—in Sunnyvale, California.

 44 Soon afterwards, Judy helped me move in. Which seems fitting for I've equated her with Judith and The Advent of the New Church (n4:110). This is how I view my first venture on my own. And in Revelation chapter 12, it speaks of the New Church: The Woman Clothed With the Sun. So, why not Sunnyvale? Come to find out Judy had also lived in Sunnyvale, only a few blocks away. And being my first residence, I correlate it with Daphne (n4:20), the first love of Apollo—the sun god. Sure enough there was an Apollo gas station two blocks from home! in an otherwise a residential area. Aside from this one location, I'd only seen an Apollo gas station one other time, meaning for me it was pretty rare. It's equally interesting that the apartment complex was called the Eden Roc Apartments—in accord with the Church of Adam (n1:23), the first church! I saw Judy once shortly afterwards, and it was the last I saw of her and her family. Actually, I saw the husband and the kids once in the parking lot at the hardware store a few years later but, they didn't see me.

 45 I worked at my new job for three months, until just before Christmas, when I got laid-off, during the recession of 1974. The next few months were rough, mainly because I hadn't worked long enough to receive unemployment. Thus feeling alone and isolated, I became very depressed. It felt like I sank to the bottom of a pit, only to find it wasn't the bottom, and I sank lower and lower still. It was the bottomless pit of despair! And before long, a day wouldn't go by without me contemplating suicide. I kept looking for reasons why I shouldn't, but these slipped away as each day passed. And in Revelation 9:11, it speaks of Apollyon, the ruler over the bottomless pit.

 46 It seemed all was lost. I lacked self-confidence! Nor could I find anyone to invest in me, to feel sorry for me and sympathize with my plight. This was something my mother was good at, something a woman could readily get away with without feeling much conflict, i.e., guilt. But for a young man to behave this way? Not without hell to pay! So here I was having assimilated most of my mother's tendencies, and guilt, with little influence from anyone else, except perhaps my aunt. And I was extremely insecure about it, and constantly tearing myself to pieces over it. Then again, Dionysus was initially reared as a girl. That doesn't mean my mother was without guilt, to say the least! But it seemed more normal, if not acceptable for her to behave this way, to the point of deriving comfort and satisfaction from it all: evoking sympathy from friends and family alike!

 47 I couldn't behave like this without feeling like a woman, something I was all too aware of. It's through a woman's dominance or guile, something Roy Masters was known to say, that homosexual tendencies are brought out in the son. All I knew was how to repress my hostilities, towards my mother and everything else, which became an increasing burden as resentments piled up. It was actually my mother inside me, who had done the same thing! She was cropping up everywhere! "You become like what you hate!" again Roy Masters. And with no identity of my own, I felt totally inept as a human being: subject to the self-serving nature in people, or greed. It seemed to be all I could appeal to in people, who didn't understand me or themselves. So I became "all things to all people," again Roy Masters, giving up everything for the sake of approval. I was desperate! Guess what? more hostilities to repress. And things only got worse, as I sank lower and lower into the abyss.

  Apartment Manager

 48 I was also having problems with the manager of the apartment complex at this time. I wouldn't ordinarily say anything, but because of the kind of impression he had, a lot of fuel was added to my despair. And so helps paint a clearer picture. A decrepit old man, essentially bedridden with emphysema, he had little strength and rarely ventured outside; and was exclusively dependent on his oxygen bottles. The main reason he became the manager was because he was good at yelling at people—believe it or not—at keeping everyone in line. And he seemed to relish the idea of vindicating himself on people, as embittered as he was, he wasn't good for much else.

 49 It's plain he wasn't just my problem though, he was everybody's problem, and people did what they could to avoid him. It wasn't a good idea to get on his bad side, for once you slipped up, you were likely kicked out of the complex. I saw it happen more than once, and it nearly happened to me! He was always ranting and raving at somebody, about this thing or that, up one side and down the other. Indeed some of it was probably warranted, for I know how difficult it is to correct people: it's usually all or nothing or, one extreme or another, and requires a drastic change in lifestyle. He was no exception to this himself, as he vehemently tore into people. A viper probably best describes what he was.

 50 This is what it was like if you got on his bad side. And, if you suffered the misfortune of getting on his good side, your fate was equally in doubt. He also preyed on those who were pushovers, and I was one of his favorite's: "Welcome to my parlor, said the spider  . . ." He always flagged me down whenever I walked by. It's unfortunate that I lived next door! Sure enough he had something he wanted me to do or, sit down and listen to him reminisce for the next two hours: over life's little miseries, or spill out the poison towards someone—all the while feeding off my substance. It was almost sinister. As they say, "Misery loves company!" Fortunately I got the chance to move to the other side of the complex, where I had some semblance of privacy. He died shortly after this, within a few months.

  The Fourth Roy

 51 It was during this time that I enrolled in a home correspondence course, motorcycle mechanics, and met the Fourth Earl of Roy. As I said in Gerarai (n4:7), and explained in chapter 6 (n62), there were only five men that had a real impact on my life, and they all had the name Roy in common. It could also be said my apartment manager had an impact, but he had little to do with a change in outlook, or its direction. This Roy was the sales-rep for this home study school. And being a salesman, he was very persuasive and, intuitive—what I ascribe to Sybil (n4:46), the fourth aspect of Gerarai. I helped Roy hand deliver circulars and flyers for the school, a lot of legwork, which allowed me to make some extra money. Roy also helped me get my driver's license, and a job, shagging parts for an automotive shop, which lasted about a month, something I felt totally inept at.

 52 Roy wasn't all that different than other people, for he didn't understand either, and had a definite egotistical bent; and, took advantage of my suggestibility. In some ways he was worse, for I was totally swayed by his personality, being a salesman. And there was something guileful about him, that could have been ascribed to a woman, thus correlating with Sybil (n4:46); but I felt intimidated by everyone to some degree. All in all he was fair and helpful, and didn't take undue advantage—offering something in return for my efforts—though he maintained the upper hand and never relinquished it. He tried to be my friend though, which was more than I could say for most people. And if not for him, I may not have survived the period.

 53 Just before parting, he offered something that completely took me by surprise. A position as a sales-rep for this home study school, meaning he wanted to take me under his wing. But I was scared to death, as inept as I was at dealing with people and no self-esteem. I couldn't see myself as clever and articulate like he was—and with a certain amount of dishonesty—though I tried to emulate him. And feeling the need for a role model or, success of the world, I was more his personal slave. It seemed like the ultimate gesture but I declined, saying what I really wanted was to be an artist: alone and deprived and the budding narcissist, this was was my major interest throughout school. To be honest, my future looked bleak, and it appeared I wouldn't succeed at anything. I sense he may have had similar feelings and felt responsible for my welfare.

  First Real Job

 54 This occurred just before I found a real job I felt qualified at: doing electronics assembly at a small electronics firm that built lasers and related devices. I got the job in April 1975, on my mother's birthday (April 7th), and worked there for 49 months, from April 1975 to May 1979, the longest I worked for any company (the number 49 also corresponding to the name Dennis [n8:23]). I was an electronics assembler the first three years, and became a Sr. Assembler, before becoming a Jr. Technician in my last year. This job was fundamental to the development of my career in electronics.

 55 During the first two months, I felt alienated towards my co-workers. People seemed to come at me from all directions, without a common thread between what one person said and did, and what another said and did, except they were motivated by self-interest and were emotionally biased. In other words they were being selfish! And I was really puzzled, and all too aware of what it was like being on the receiving end—of getting taken advantage of.

 56 I was becoming frustrated, and remember pounding my fist on the table one day, tired of getting the raw end of the deal; I was that close to losing my job. Unable to deal with their hypocrisy, the world continued to get inside and eat away at the little that was left. Soon afterwards, while at home one day, I said to myself: "Man! there must be some standard by which people are measured, otherwise life is pointless, and I won't survive." I wondered about that, and I'm reminded of what Solomon said when God asked him what he desired most: "Give me an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and evil . . ." I Kings 3:5-14

 57 It was also about this time or, before I got the job? that I had a run in with some Jehovah's Witnesses, who tried converting me. And though I approached it with an open mind, I kept getting the run-around. Whenever I asked a question, they referred to the Bible, i.e., verse and chapter. They wouldn't speak to me directly, as one person to another, they didn't seem to have that capacity or, wisdom. And I kept asking myself, "Where is the common bond between us?" or, common sense, for it wasn't making any sense. I finally resolved it in myself, and said if God really existed, he'd have to make himself known to me personally, on a personal level, even if that meant being damned forever. I just couldn't take someone else's word for it. I then did what I could to avoid these people—indeed they were very persistent—until they eventually stopped coming around.

  Roy Masters

 58 All of this prepared the way for my introduction to Roy MastersThe Fifth Earl (n6:62-65)—and shortly after the fist pounding incident at work, I tuned in his radio program in late 1975. And his preaching fell precisely along the lines of what I was searching for. He preached understanding, through the enlightened soul, regarding human nature and yourself—i.e., common sense—and of a Divine Hand working through everything: that God really existed and how to experience it personally.

 59 He also expounded a general philosophy on life, designed to ward off trouble or nip it in the bud. Including a meditation technique that enhanced one's objectivity: to sort through the morass of one's thinking and find a more meaningful solution. He also addressed repentance, and the remittance of sins, through the understanding, i.e., how to clean up your act. How to deal with morbid thoughts and depression; the virtues of moderation and nature of addiction: of not going to extremes and maintaining a healthy balance, i.e., being poised. How to maintain and strengthen your beliefs, and really know for yourself; and, how to suffer while standing up for what you believe: to deal with unreasonable people and say No.

 60 All of these are positive things, and were useful for someone like myself, coming from my background. But there was a price to pay, and Roy treated everyone with a dose of stark realism—or, cold water treatment. Thus serving as a negative contrast, in effect it was brutal, involving self-infliction and a pruning back of everything or rather, too conservative. It was more a form of austerity, of covering one's assets and maintaining a defensive posture, to keep the world out. While everything became a contrast of black and white: issues appeared larger than life, involving a sense of urgency and, sense of persecution if not resolved (n4:61).

 61 It also entailed sterilization or, systematic castration, of yourself and those around you if you had the nerve: being abrupt at the slightest provocation. It was most evident when he advocated eliminating the sex drive, albeit eventually (n9:22; n13:32). Which need not be viewed as wrong, for it's helpful to apply a sterile dressing to a wound. And, if one were to plant a garden, you stand a better chance of succeeding if you sterilize the soil first. But once the healing starts, or the garden takes, nature itself—which indeed is sexual in essence—must be allowed to take over. The sterilization procedure is not the complete answer, as Roy would have you believe.

 62 It took a major adjustment in lifestyle to follow Roy, one almost had to be masochistic. Guess where I was from? And it involved disciplining yourself, not unlike the military: i.e., pulling yourself up by your bootstraps. It was a Spartan idealism! And he demonstrated the nature of evil, of how malevolent it was—and powerful! And he spoke of psychotics and psychopaths, all of which is scary material: it can destroy the person who isn't prepared, or committed, as Roy would say. Indeed, if evil had the power he said it has, austere measures would be required, and castration becomes the most viable option. I'm saying he's overestimated its power (n13:11). Which is essentially what his philosophy entails—oh foolish virgin! (n4:59-65).

 63 His initial message was to get people to wake up, the psychotics, and deal with the evil around them. And with the picture he painted, you were likely scared to death! And for the first few years I wavered—on again off again. He also berated people, though with some purpose, and made distinctions smacking of elitism: those who could hear, and appreciate what he says, received status as God's elect. For those who couldn't, he made no bones about it when saying, "Good riddens to bad rubbish!" For he was God's mouthpiece, here to dole out everyone's just rewards. Now there is some truth to this and, he can be compared to a modern-day John the Baptist or, second Martin Luther (n4:59; n13:5). But his preaching involves too much theory, hence the resulting callousness (n12:41), as it was with Martin Luther—or even John.

  Against the Grain

 64 Having lived a bare-bones existence, the problem was I was already awake, and lacked a sense of self-esteem. I was all too aware of the evil around me—i.e., people's hypocrisy! And when I began listening to Roy, it was like wearing an oxygen mask that was ripped away, and I was suffocating! So I went against the grain of what he preached and chose to go back to sleep: to try and enjoy life in a more normal way, egotistically if you will, with a sprinkling of Roy's truths. In effect I wasn't ready for Roy, or so he would say, but I had already been exposed, and all I could do was try to fall asleep—a delicate matter indeed.

 65 It was like going back to day one, to raise myself all over again. And in the myth, Dionysus was born prematurely, before he was born a second time through his father. I see a similar correlation between myself and Roy, who preached the message of The Father, as Roy himself was a father figure, through spiritual rebirth and the remission of sins. And with this being chapter 11, it's similar to Revelation 11, which portrays the Two Witnesses (n4:157; n6:105-107). And, while the first half is more of a testimony to Roy, who I specifically had in mind when writing it, the second half speaks more of my life after receiving a new identity. Thus it's interesting how Roy changed his name, from Reuben, who was originally the firstborn of Israel, born of Leah his first wife. While Joseph, the 11th son, who I equate with myself in chapter 9 (n9), and later Joseph Campbell (n13:67), was the firstborn of Rachel, his second wife.