The Gift

‘The Gift’ is the seventh episode of the fifth season of HBO’s fantasy television series Game of Thrones, and the 47th overall. The beginning of this episode is one of the darkest in the series, but since I promised not to tell the details of Ramsay’s infinite sadism, I won’t do it now.

But I’ll tell another terrible thing from the beginning of this episode. A snowfall falls that is about to spoil Stannis’ plans to invade Winterfell. The witch suggests that he should sacrifice his only daughter, who loves her father so much, so that her god will grant a victory. Stannis asks her ‘Have you lost your mind?’ but in a subsequent episode we’ll see that he ends up obeying her.

In my previous post I said that normies prefer fiction to the incomprehensible facts of the real world, and this example illustrates it. In the real world my father, originally sane, ended up obeying the witch of the house to the point of destroying my teenage life. Sometime later I would find out that exactly the same happened in other families. What distinguishes me most not only from white nationalists but from people in general is that, when some of them suffer similar tragedies, they fail to report them in autobiographies. They are able to sublimate their own tragedy by consuming episodes like this one when a father betrays his little daughter, but they never talk about their own family with real names, as I do.

It’s good to see that scene, Melisandre poisoning Stannis’ soul to sacrifice his daughter, because in today’s West the practice continues. While the sacrifice of the child’s body has been prohibited, parents are allowed to sacrifice his or her mind. When a normie hears that someone has been (pseudoscientifically) diagnosed with schizophrenia, if we decipher the psychiatric Newspeak it means that her parents murdered her soul. But who among the visitors to this site has thoughtfully weighed what I say in Day of Wrath?

But even in this episode with such a dark beginning they managed to film, later, several feminist scenes in Dorne: the absurd argument between Jaime and his teenage daughter and, in the cells, how the very masculinised Tyene mocks Bronn by exposing her breasts. These women can range from seduction to fearsome warriors whenever they feel like it: pure screenwriter shit.

However, from a strictly cinematic point of view, the episode shows us a master scene at the end. I have said that to understand Antifa one must understand the movements that preceded it. And I’m not just referring to the Antifa that Hitler and his people had to deal with before coming to power. I mean what we have been saying about the 4th and 5th centuries of our era, the destroying monks of the Greco-Roman world, and a thousand years later: the most fanatical monks among the Fraticelli. In Game of Thrones the figure of the High Sparrow embodies something of the spirit of at least one of those times.

The scene when the High Sparrow shows Cersei the oldest altar of the Faith of the Seven in King’s Landing must be seen, even in isolation. Actor Jonathan Pryce played this fanatic monk of very mild manners extraordinarily. I mean the dialogue immediately preceding the moment he accuses Cersei because of Lancel’s testimony (this is where the title ‘The Gift’ came from).

I have already said it several times but I must repeat it. If someone wants to flee from reality because of how crude reality is, instead of watching television series they should read two novels by Gore Vidal and Umberto Eco about the 4th and 14th centuries.

My father’s tale

I’ll be busy for a few days and won’t post articles until I finish a course. But I would like to leave these lines during my absence. The thing is, when reading Karlheinz Deschner’s chapter on Pope Gregory I came across this sentence:

Archbishop Maximus did public penance in July 599, prostrate after hours in a street and shouting: ‘I have sinned against God and blessed Gregory’.

The anecdote reminded me of a story that my father told me decades ago. A king had to humble himself for days at the doors of the pope’s residence because he feared for the salvation of his soul: begging the Vicar of Christ to forgive him (I think the pope’s name was Gregory). Finally the pope deigned to open the doors and forgive him. My father told me this with enthusiasm, in the sense that even the most powerful king had to humble himself before the headperson of the Roman Catholic Church. The lad I was didn’t like that story, but only much later did I begin to understand my father’s mind.

One of the milestones in understanding why he was so destructive to me was Silvano Arieti’s book that I have already talked about in Day of Wrath. In Father, the sixth book of my series of eleven I quote some passages from Arieti that astonished me and I’m going to explain them with my own examples. Think of the baby monkeys that are sold as pets, how they cling to the owner as if she were a mother (the instinct is hard-wired in the creature as it’s vital not to fall from the trees). The point is that some adults deal with childhood trauma like these young pets do with their owners: by desperately clinging to authoritarian figures.

Arieti mentions his patients who, to use my example, hung themselves like little apes onto substitute images of their parents: a church, a political party, and even their own spouse. In Father I analyse how, in repressing his childhood traumas, he clung to no less than three defensive mechanisms: religion, nationalism, and his wife. But we are talking about pathological levels of hanging onto the surrogate parent, like an ape who never grows. The example that comes to mind is a biographer of Mary Baker Eddy who recounted that one of her most faithful disciples declared that even if she had seen Mrs. Eddy commit a crime, she wouldn’t believe her own eyes!

That is the level of co-dependent subjugation my father wielded regarding his church, the nationalist myths of the country where he was raised, and his wife. So when in my adolescence my mother went crazy my father went crazy too: what in my books I’ve called the captive mind or folie à deux.

I am not going to explain here everything I said in my sixth book in Spanish. The English speaker can order a copy of my first book to get an idea (see Letter to mom Medusa on the sidebar). What I want to get to is that some insecure people tend to fall into a state of folie à deux not only with the wife, but with the church or political party to which they belong. Analogous cases of Eddy’s disciple are endemic, for example, when I try to argue with those who cannot conceive that Mesoamerican Indians ate their children despite the overwhelming evidence from the first ethnologist of the American continent.

Once the defence mechanism is established, for instance the nationalistic pride of some Mexicans, the subject is capable of the most irrational scepticism before the evidence for the simple fact that what he is doing is protecting a worldview, his ego or substitute parent. From this angle we can understand why even some Jew-wise racialists, as we saw in my post yesterday, don’t tolerate that one fails to honour the god of the Jews. That powerful archetype functions like a surrogate parent.

Arieti’s book is entitled Interpretation of Schizophrenia and, although it deals with psychiatric cases, as I read it I realised that it could apply equally to an enormous number of people who have never been diagnosed psychiatrically.

My father comes to mind. He was enthusiastic about the pious tale of the pope who made a king humble himself in Rome. Now many Americans, equally childish, desire a powerful father in the form of the State and are excited that the country of the First Amendment will soon repudiate that amendment. It doesn’t matter whether the defence mechanism is religious or political: the psychological need is the same. Just as Eddy’s disciple wouldn’t believe her eyes as Mrs. Eddy became a god-like figure, I have met people who deny the historicity of Lenin’s and Stalin’s crimes.

The drive that compels us—to quote the lyrics of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony—to believe in ‘a loving Father behind the starry vault’ means that Beethoven had a drunken father who, as a child, often beat him. We are mammals and, as the monkey of the anecdote, the unconscious need to have a surrogate father once our dad fails is infinite: a Christian attempt to heal childhood traumas. But it is deceptive magic because Yahweh is not our father, he’s our enemy.

Those who haven’t read my essay ‘God’, a page from one of my eleven books, could read it now.

Published in: on February 2, 2021 at 6:37 pm  Comments Off on My father’s tale  

Whipping the fog and pride

‘It was as useless to fight against the interpretations of ignorance as to whip the fog’.

—George Elliot, Middlemarch

Throughout the first decades of my life I was very naive. I believed that it was possible to reason with people simply by citing facts and solid arguments based on those facts. I hadn’t realised that humanity is a failed species, and that throughout civilisations humans have believed simply what they want to believe, even if they are the most horrible and cruel religions or secular ideologies.

After reading Schopenhauer I realised that everything has to do with the will, and that it is impossible to change the worldview of an ordinary human unless one first gains his will.

When I learned in my twenties of liberal Christian criticism about the historicity of New Testament accounts, in my infinite naivety I believed that I could use that knowledge to argue with my father. For example, I once told him that Herod’s massacre of the innocents could not be historical since Flavius Josephus, the historian of the 1st century of our era, would not have overlooked it in his famous history of Jewry. But Josephus doesn’t mention it. The only thing my father did was get angry, and of course my solid argument didn’t make the slightest dent in his traditional Catholic worldview.

The same I came to observe with the people of the left whom I dealt with. As my visitors know, I grew up in a country in Latin America. In the days before the internet, my acquaintances were not interested in what could be accessed through the cultural magazines of the country, for example, the magazine Vuelta by Octavio Paz: who criticised Marxism-Leninism. The left-wing people whom I dealt with weren’t interested in Paz’s magazine, even though he was the Spanish speaker whose prose was the most lyrical in his day.

(Left, Juan del Río and his wife, who invited me to enter Eschatology in December 1978. Both have already died.) Likewise, when I began to apostatise from Eschatology, a cult of the New Age type in which I spent some years of my life (see the first of my essays in Daybreak), my teacher Juan del Río didn’t answer any of my arguments even when I sent them in writing. Juan died because eschatologists believe that all diseases have a psychosomatic aetiology, and despite having the financial means, a colon cancer that tormented him for years wasn’t properly treated. In his book-review ‘Do not rely on “mental healing”, scepticism is healthy’, the American S. Currie tells about a similar case:

My mother left leather-bound editions of The Sickle (1918) and The Sharp Sickle (1938) [the textbooks of Eschatology] to me before she passed away. She used to read to me from these books on Sundays when I was young. I believe her mother, my grandmother, originally introduced her to these books when she was a young woman. Both my mother and grandmother died of colon cancer. My father was a physician. In my mother’s case, she kept her early symptoms secret from my Dad and everyone else so that she could work on them via ‘mental healing’. When at last she did tell my Dad and she went to her doctor, it was too late. I both love these books as my mother’s close possessions, and despise them for encouraging her to ignore modern medicine. I will not leave them to my children.

Some time later, now with the advantage of the internet, I discovered the forums of white nationalists, and it happened exactly the same that had happened to me with my father, the Latin American leftists and the eschatologists: they don’t tolerate cognitive dissonance. If they tolerated it the first thing they would do would be a severe examination of conscience of how it is possible to be Jew-wise and at the same time bend the knee before the god of the Jews. It took me a few years to realise that white nationalists are as closed-minded as my father, the people of the old left that I dealt with, and the eschatologists.

For the record, I have been in this world for over sixty years, and this has been my experience with the common human. Trying to fight ignorance with all of them has been like whipping the fog: a pointless experience. I’m not referring to one hundred percent of Christians, leftists or white nationalists because it is obvious that there are exceptions. I mean the bulk of the population.

What they all lack is a little humility. I abandoned Christianity, leftist ideologies, Eschatology and White Nationalism out of humility (now I don’t consider myself a white nationalist but rather a ‘priest of the 14 words’ to distinguish myself from them): humility to face tough or ugly facts. What all these people suffer from is pride, the original sin to quote their own vocabulary.

Published in: on January 23, 2021 at 1:42 pm  Comments Off on Whipping the fog and pride  

Lebensraum, 2

Demographic crisis

Four years earlier, in December 1935, the entity that would be in charge of the project, Lebensborn—Source of Life—had been created: a social assistance organisation whose main purpose was to offer different types of facilities for single mothers and their babies.

The German population had been declining for decades, and the country was suffering a severe demographic crisis. The birth rate, which at the beginning of the century was 35.8 children per thousand inhabitants, had fallen to 14.7 in 1933, the year of Hitler’s rise to power. For the Führer’s ambition to populate the eastern regions with Aryans, it was essential to reverse this trend. Himmler estimated that 120 million people were needed.

Family life and motherhood were promoted in various ways, notably with special marriage loans and grants for each birth to encourage Germans to bring more children into the world. At the same time, any information on contraception was suppressed and contraceptives were banned. Abortion was also outlawed, which was labelled ‘sabotage against the future of Germany’.

The idea of increasing the population with a large number of children of the superior race was firmly rooted in the mentality of the party. ‘If Germany had a million children a year and eliminated between 700,000 and 800,000 of the weakest, the result would probably be an increase in its strength’, Hitler had affirmed with conviction at a party meeting in 1929.

Here it is worth interpolating vignettes from my own life.

Non-consanguineous relatives had a son who was born the same year I was born. But this guy is mentally retarded, so terribly retarded that he once bit off his sister’s finger. Another case: the only friend with whom I spoke disparagingly about the race of the country in which we were born had a Down syndrome sister whose retardation was so great that, if they left her a few meters outside her apartment, she wouldn’t know how to return home: a lower IQ than a dog.

These real-life cases show that one must be truly lobotomised through Christian ethics to avoid what the ancient Greeks and Romans did with their defective babies. It is more than obvious that Christianity has fried the brains of the white parents of these people I know, and millions of others like them.

Among my relatives, only Uncle Beto admired Hitler. He once said having in mind, I believe, one of my handicapped cousins: ‘I would kill such a daughter and then I would go to hell!’ He meant that he’d kill her if she was his daughter. Although I was not a witness of this anecdote I guess that his sisters, my great-aunts, were scandalised by these kinds of pronouncements.

But let’s continue with the Third Reich.

‘If we could establish the Nordic race from Germany and, from this seedbed, produce a race of 200 million, the world would be ours’, Himmler eloquently expressed. A few months after its founding, Lebensborn opened Heim Hochland, the first home for pregnant women. For this, the National Socialists took over the building of a Catholic orphanage located in the town of Munich.

Initially, the institution could host up to thirty mothers and fifty-five children, and applicants were carefully screened. Only women who had the characteristics of the dominant race were admitted. Candidates had their skull measured, and only those with the highly coveted elongated skull, typical of the Aryans, were eligible for admission. They also had to meet other requirements, such as being blonde, having blue or green eyes, and being in good health.

Those who passed the test received the best care in exquisite surroundings as a reward. Homes were often in stately homes that, as in the case of Heim Hochland, had often been taken from Hitler’s enemies, and other mansions from Jews. The organisation’s headquarters in Munich was in a house that had been owned by the writer Thomas Mann, (who had six children with his Jewish wife). All homes were equipped with modern medical equipment and cared for by specialised medical personnel.

These luxurious conditions had their effect. In 1939, Gregor Ebner, Lebensborn’s medical director, informed Himmler that a total of 1,300 women had applied. Of these, 635 had been considered suitable due to their racial characteristics and their state of health.

The births went very well. While in Germany the mortality of newborns was six percent, in the homes of the Lebensborn Organisation this figure was reduced by half. ‘Deliveries are easy, without major complications, which is attributable to the racial selection and quality of women we welcome’, Ebner wrote proudly. Logically, all this had a high cost: 400 marks per mother. ‘It is not a great sacrifice if we can save a million children with good blood’, Ebner concluded.

Published in: on December 7, 2020 at 7:33 pm  Comments Off on Lebensraum, 2  

Devlin postscript

I would like to clarify something about what I recently said in ‘On Roger Devlin’. Last week I visited the home of the Catholic family that I referred to in that article and, now I realise, what I wrote is inaccurate. While it is true that the woman who sent her husband to the asylum is a Catholic, she didn’t belong to the circle of very traditionalist Catholics, as I said in the middle of this month. However, there is something that I witnessed in my recent visit to this very decent family that I must share.

A real nymph of that family, of stunning beauty, very slim, with blond hair and light eyes—like those on my sidebar—will soon marry a swarthy Mexican from one of the southern states of the country. Of course, neither her parents nor the nymph’s brothers are bothered by the matter. That has been happening in Latin America for half a millennium, it is a practice that doesn’t have to change at the last minute.

What I see ignominious in all this is the cowardice, throughout the American white nationalism movement, of not wanting to see something that has been happening on the continent for five hundred years. Recently a Christian tried to post a comment on this site claiming that Europeans genocided Amerindians, as if that would refute the criticisms of Christianity on this site. I didn’t let that comment pass due to his obvious dishonesty: not wanting to see the catastrophe that miscegenation represented in most of the continent. This blood mixing was due to a religion that made no difference between Iberian whites and Amerinds. Both were souls that the Church of Rome could save, exactly alike in the eyes of the Christian god.

One can take a look at The Unz Review, which collects articles published in various sites on white nationalism, the alt-right and the alt-lite, and the ethnic suicide of Iberian whites from the 16th century to date is not even remotely mentioned, despite the immense extensions of land in which it was carried out—and continues to be carried out, like the nymph friend who will soon ruin her blood.

I already said it but it bears repeating. The trick American white nationalists do by blaming Jewry solely and exclusively for Aryan decline is to conceal the history of most of their continent. In his recent article for example, which I referred to in ‘Why I don’t talk about the news’, MacDonald sums up his ideology by committing the usual trick: talking about the Frankfurt school, etc., without mentioning anything about what happened from the Rio Grande to Argentina, even centuries before the Jews emigrated to the US.

I have already discussed this in the last Daybreak article and those interested can either print the PDF, or purchase a copy of it. The only thing I’ll add is that it’s becoming increasingly clear that white nationalism is an extremely dishonest movement. And the reason for their dishonesty is obvious: they don’t want to put their parents’ religion on the dock.

Published in: on October 27, 2020 at 11:26 am  Comments (1)  

Nobody wanted to listen, 11

Epilogue

Every time I tried to draw water from the well, the bucket came out dry in the desert of my acquaintances. Parents or personal tragedies, as a subject, was forbidden throughout society. For decades I couldn’t cover the topic with anyone.

For the human galaxy of those who commit suicide that history has seen, ‘at least one soul in the entire world’ could have saved them, some confessed. But they had no one to show solidarity with them and they killed themselves. How many millions of humans could have written a History of My Mind like the one the poet Kleist threw into the flames before blowing his brains out? Throughout my twenties and thirties something similar happened to me: I couldn’t write when I had everything ready to do so. Nor could I study a career, and what is worse, I didn’t understand why. In addition to the Letter I had written, my will faded away as I tried other enterprises. Then someone appeared in my life.

Caesar:

The day before I received your letter. How long the mail takes!

I have finished reading your book, it is so shocking and disturbing that sometimes I had to stop reading because of the sadness and pain I felt. It made me think and once I started to cry and I better stopped reading it because I was going to wet the pages… I understand your suffering and at the same time I admire your strength. Another lad would have become an alcoholic, a drug addict, a homosexual, a robber or whatnot.

Despite everything, I imagine that your parents love you, as well as you love them. How good it would be if they recognised the damage they caused you and changed their attitude towards you. The past could no longer be changed, but perhaps you would feel better in your self-esteem. (I think deep down they feel remorse, but they don’t want to admit it. How humility is necessary to recognise one’s mistakes.)

November 24, 1998. And you walking through those gloomy streets of Manchester, at midnight, with the solitude of Chirico’s paintings. Like a repetitive nightmare: the teenage Caesar slapped and alone. The one who lost his family and only loved his tree. The Caesar who walked around in his bedroom at his grandmother’s house when he turned thirty…

July 17, 1999. The letter you want to send to your mother (‘Postscript: I will never forget the golden stage that, thanks to you, dad and my siblings, I passed as a child in the house in Palenque’) touched me. I really like that about you.

But I am very sad that there is no reconciliation with your family. I felt a lump in my throat when I read your postscript: you love them Caesar. I can’t understand why your parents harden their hearts—they love you too! How sad that out of pride, for reasons unknown, they don’t come near you. How would it feel to lose their child? I don’t want them to leave this world with that abyss towards you…

Don’t take me wrong, believe me it comes from my heart.

Take care,

Paulina.

Returning to the country after a year in the gloomy and rainy city of Manchester, and speaking with her in person, she confessed to me that upon reaching the passage of my Letter where I put on a jacket when running away from home when my father hit me, she felt like a Thumbelina like the one in the children’s story. That Thumbelina, she told me, although she couldn’t travel back in time to that night in April 1976 and console myself, felt all the intensity of my tragedy. She wanted to be, although at least as small as the character in the story, an inner voice of comfort in my heart during the most crucial night of my life.

Paulina’s compassion was the cure for my soul: the antithesis of all the offenses of so many people over so many years. A single word of comfort can save a life. It’s like seeing life in colour again after centuries of seeing everything in black and white. ‘If at least one soul in the whole world…’ said those who would commit suicide.

But they had none.

Published in: on October 20, 2020 at 6:25 pm  Comments (2)  

Nobody wanted to listen, 6

A humanitarian analyst

Once again, I will be told that I chose the wrong people: that the Escobars were unfortunate cases and that in the world there are professionals capable of understanding a tragedy for what it is, a tragedy and call a spade a spade. Let’s now see what happened to me with the most benevolent analyst I have ever met.

Dr. Carlos García had lent money to my parents when they were going to be expelled from their house in Tlalpan for not paying it. Likewise, when I was unemployed at twenty-three, García invited me to play chess with him once a week and paid for my classes. Almost two decades later, the same month as my disagreement with the Escobars, I went to his house to personally deliver a copy of my Letter to him. Let’s see what my diary says of that encounter in his home study:

July 15, 1998

Today I went to see Dr. García and he surprised me with several comments that corroborate my vision of him as a good person. For example, he told me ‘I have never committed a patient since 1960’ and used the word ‘curse’ from Szasz, with whom he says he agrees, when referring to psychiatric labelling.

Given the prestige that the doctor has in society, Tom Szasz says that the semantic stigma with which the psychiatrist denigrates his victim results in a social curse.

He liked Ronald Laing because of his colourful personality, and he told me that Laing played bassoon and had died playing tennis in Monaco.

Also, and this is novel because it qualifies what I wrote in previous pages, it vindicated the role of benevolent analysts like him. He told me that at psychiatrists’ symposia he had been blatantly told ‘That won’t work’—psychoanalysis. ‘This is where the buck is made’— psychiatry—since psychiatrists earn four times as much as analysts. He has had schizophrenic patients and one ‘labelled’—he used that word—of manic-depressive who had been prescribed lithium for life, but he left her well with only therapy, taking away the medicine. The shrink who had treated her before ‘was on the same page’ he told me, pointing to a book by Ramón de la Fuente.

This was a splendid start, and everything suggested that I had finally found a friendly ear in a professional. A doctor who recognises fraud in his profession can be a guarantee of good feelings towards the victims of the parents and the doctors who pay them. A month after I gave him my manuscript I excitedly called García to see what impact my precious text had caused. I don’t know shorthand, but I managed to jot down some important phrases by writing as fast as I could while talking to him on the phone:

17 of August. ‘It is very well written. It is a good testimony, like Kafka’s letter. In my opinion, the family problem must be removed: by removing the names, it could become a good testimony to be known socially; we must remove the character of denunciation and give it more social and collective function. It has curative action. It is a book against family, medical institutions and in particular, ahem, the health [apparently an euphemism for the psychiatric] institution. With pseudonyms… hopefully it may be published’.

This opinion encouraged me and I made a new appointment with him. But I must confess something. Years before I had been offended by García when in his home study he defended Amara against my complaint. That happened before I started my psychiatry research and could properly present my case in two books. But García’s comments about my Letter reconciled me to him, at least momentarily. The day I saw him, back in his home study, I wrote these reflections in my diary:

August 28. Today I went to see him and spent an hour and a half talking to him. I was wrong in believing that García wasn’t compassionate. The first thing he said about my Letter to Mama Medusa was: ‘I was so amazed. I felt moved’.

And he did talk about Amara: that there was no communication, although I remember that he was ambiguous about assigning blame (he implied that it was necessary to find out where the error came from). But he did say that instead of wanting to understand family dynamics Amara turned to drugs. This comment and others end the resentment I had for him when he long ago repudiated my criticism of his colleague. He also spoke of the terrible lack of communication with my parents as a teenager. That was the year [1974] that García met me at my parents’ school. He was incomparably more human than Angelica, Hector and not to mention Solbein. García confirmed to me that no physician in Mexico publicly opposes psychiatry. Almost at the beginning he spoke of ‘the high-risk situation’ in which I found myself as a teenager. But he added that it would be ‘pamphlet’ if I didn’t use pseudonyms, which was ‘the only objection’ he made to my text.

So García advised me the same as Tere: he was more concerned with the public image of my family than with my need to report the case.

Without having assimilated this fact, two years later I would send him How to Murder Your Child’s Soul. Once again, I wrote down what he was saying to me over the phone. The brackets and ellipsis mean that I couldn’t write down his sentences in full, but the fragments are significant to know what García was thinking:

June 9, 2000.

What a disappointment! Dr. García told me:

‘I read half. I haven’t finished it; the question of sight has become more acute. From what I have read, I believe that you are wasting time and vital energy on the family matter. [You have to] put a line, a full stop and dedicate yourself to other issues. The critique of psychiatry is somewhat outdated; I feel it’s anachronistic, like that criticism of Dr. Amara. As far as I have read, if you reoriented your critical skills in another field… I think there was a series of misunderstandings and it led to suffering… My point of view [is that you should abandon your project so] you don’t have to continue paying the toll of what happened to you in youth. [I would suggest that] the question of Dr. Amara be put aside’.

I asked him ‘Are you friends?’ and he replied: ‘Not properly. We don’t treat each other; I don’t know about his activities. My opinion isn’t influenced by a question of friendship’.

García’s little sermon caused me enormous indignation. I embarked on a reflection for several days that made me fill my diary with expletives. I didn’t respond to García either at his home study or in writing because it would have been useless. But on the very day of his paternalistic advice I wrote down this soliloquy:

Do you remember his defence of Amara years ago that hurt me? Good!: history repeats itself. All this corroborates my view that only apostates of an ideology understand reality. García is an analyst. He never apostatised from his profession: he’s part of the guild. His internal alliances don’t allow him to see reality. He’s like Hector Escobar: good people but wrong. I mustn’t interact with them at all! I mustn’t speak to him again. You have to accept your solitude, Caesar: no professional will be able to understand you since the profession itself is a trap. Now the last door is closing…

11th of June. One of the nonsense that García told me that I didn’t write down the day before was that continuing my literary project ‘could harm me’. This shows that analysts know nothing of the mind. What García ignores (‘so that you don’t continue paying the toll on what happened to you in your youth’) is that you cannot start a different life without money. And even with money I would write first and only later would I dedicate myself to the cinema, for the simple reason that it’s now that my soliloquies from those years are alive and need to be written down. I have been a mountain philosopher for decades and it would be a crime if, by dedicating myself to something else, they would go out of my memory. I don’t see in what other areas I could help myself and other victims more than by telling my life.

June 17. There is something more serious in García’s response. If Amara keeps destroying teenagers in his office it is deeply immoral to say ‘put it aside’. That advice presupposes as an absolute fact that Amara hasn’t destroyed and is not destroying other young people. García didn’t deny my accusation, he simply ignored it, no matter how obvious the fact that, since Amara and other psychiatrists continue to do these things, my testimony would serve to combat them. Without knowing it, García is part of the system. His message seems to be: Your text is changing the rules of the game for me (he used those words!). I won’t read it all: it may endanger my POV about my colleagues.

June 27th. Another thing. That response from García, allying internally with someone who deserves a trial in court, shows that therapy is really a very bad thing. There is no getting around this conclusion: If García had scolded me for denouncing his colleague in the past, I’d have been terribly confused. Well, something similar happened to me years ago, but in 1976 I would have panicked. I must use this in the future to show the accuracy of Jeffrey Masson’s stance: All therapy is toxic. Now I just hate him. As a teenager he would have hurt me.

Imagine this: suppose my book has already been published and is selling well. If a journalist interviewed García to talk about the literary novelty, he couldn’t have come out with the advice he gave me. It wouldn’t have been so easy to escape. He must have faced what I wrote in that half that he read. But talking to an analyst in private lends itself to violating the most elementary rules of logic and common sense. Therapists despise what their clients tell them and shy away like children. It is too evident that the Amaras, Santarellis, Krassoievitchs, Millanes, Corrales and even Garcías [the analysts who have offended me] should only be challenged in my writings. In other words, their offices are a Wonderland where the accusations are ignored, disregarded.

Remember that counselling the victim instead of reforming the perpetrator is what Miller calls poisonous pedagogy, and the same goes for trying to ‘educate’ the victim without vindicating him against the curse that Szasz spoke of.

It is clear, Caesar, that you shouldn’t expect anything from those in the cult of psychoanalysis, including those who originally showed a good heart. They all belong to a quasi-religion and will not apostatise from it. They will take it to their graves. Forget about them. If they weren’t so religious, García and Escobar could’ve called me to politely discuss our differences. They won’t do it: this is a world without morals and the García case exemplifies it. Instead of telling me something about my accusations, they close their minds. Like my sister Korina, they give advice. It seems that the taboo on these topics is much more widespread than expected. It isn’t just my parents. It isn’t only the old Uncle Beto and Godmother or my cousins Héctor, Octavio and Carmina. People who agree with Szasz himself, such as García, also have closed minds (and let’s not talk about doctors Santarelli, Millán and other renowned analysts who have offended me terribly). That is your world Caesar, like it or not. My message is for other people. Don’t give your pearls to pigs anymore.

June 28th. I can’t leave Garcia alone. I think of the phrases ‘that criticism of doctor Amara…’, ‘there was a series of misunderstandings…’ I didn’t criticise Amara: I denounced him! Using the word ‘criticism’ suggests something like an opinion, a point of view: as if in my book I hadn’t talked about criminal actions, not ‘misunderstandings’! See now this: ‘If you reoriented your critical capacity to another field…’ Imagine telling Solzhenitsyn to redirect his criticism to a field outside Russia! I have been thinking many things about Garcia. It’s a great indicator of how bad his profession is.

García also told me by phone that the National Institute of Psychiatry [known also as INP in Mexico] ‘hadn’t allowed a patient to be committed because it was involuntary’. With this argument he tried to refute my manuscript (‘the criticism of psychiatry is somewhat outdated’) by assuming that in recent years the profession has become more humanitarian. I was speechless. It couldn’t be that I, decades younger than García, knew that the INP is the only psychiatric hospital in Mexico City in which internment is voluntary. In the large psychiatric hospital next door to García’s home, the Fray Bernardino Álvarez Hospital, involuntary psychiatry is practiced, such as electroshocking the inmates! The INP does it too, but it brainwashes the patients into undergoing therapy with their consent. Of course: they aren’t warned that that ‘therapy’ produces amnesia. A woman who was interned at the INP told me in 2005 that the electroshocks that were applied to her there erased her memories of a trip. It is also worth mentioning that the director of the INP, Gerard Heinze, told me personally that he mentions the magic word ‘Fray Bernardino’ to intimidate his patients into submitting to electroshock ‘therapy’.(*)

Garcia’s ignorance of psychiatry in the year 2000 stems from his incredible—truly incredible—blindness before the human rights violations that take place a few blocks from his home. The only psychiatric facility in the country that locks up children, the Juan N. Navarro Children’s Hospital, is also close to his home! In which bubble was Dr. García living? A few months before García told me that the criticism of my manuscript was outdated, the Mexican magazine Proceso had published a cover article exposing the crimes committed in a national psychiatric hospital run by the state. My diary from 2000 continues:

June 29. Oh García: I can’t leave you! Two years ago you told me that the schizoid label is ‘label’ and ‘a curse as Szasz says’. But when a colleague of yours labels me as a teenager while I am perfectly sane, and as an adult I want to denounce him, then you tell me: ‘Amara must be put aside’. Isn’t this precisely schizophrenia?

The anger caused by the old friend’s scolding was such that in my diaries I continued to go after him sporadically in 2001, 2002, 2003 and even 2004. But the above is enough to provide an idea of the bile that I spilled over his little piece of advice and scolding: the ‘poisonous pedagogy’ that Miller speaks of in its purest expression!

Carlos García did exactly the same that my pseudo-friend Tere had done to me. They both advised me to abandon my literary project. They didn’t realise that just by giving me that advice they would become themselves characters in such a project. The only difference is that Tere wanted to dissuade me from publishing my Letter to mom Medusa, where I denounce the crime of my parents; García wanted to dissuade me from publishing How to Murder Your Child’s Soul, where I exposed his colleague Amara. For Tere as well as for García and many others, the crimes that society commits with a family child must remain hidden. No one is to pronounce names. This pair reminds me of the first Gulag fugitive who escaped from an archipelago island and published a book about his experiences. In a crazy western world where Stalin used to be worshiped, the fugitive’s testimony was ignored and its author was subjected to the same kind of expletives that I received.
____________

(*) With another anti-psychiatric activist, in 2002 I interviewed Gerard Heinze, the director of the INP, and later I wrote a report about that visit.

Published in: on October 14, 2020 at 5:43 pm  Comments Off on Nobody wanted to listen, 6  

Nobody wanted to listen, 5

The opinion of psychologists

‘Where are the men?’ the little prince at last took up the conversation again. ‘It is a little lonely in the desert…’

‘It is also lonely among men’, the snake said.

—Antoine de Saint-Exupéry


It may be assumed that Tere simply followed the dictates of traditional morality, but that if I told my testimony to a professional psychologist I would find the much sought after oasis. Nothing further from the truth. In the same multi-family apartment complex where I lived with Tere’s family, I met the psychologist Angelica. She read a version of my Letter and other texts that bear certain similarities with what is written in the narrative part of this book. Let’s see what happened when the psychology teacher read my stuff. I will cite my diary and later some of her letters that we exchanged. I had spoken to Angelica on the phone and I surprised her at the moment when she read the climax of my Letter:

July 25, 1998. I interrupted Angelica right in the passage of ‘The Medusa’! She said that it’s very good; that she doesn’t read out of obligation but because she’s enjoying it a lot; that the psychological references are very good and that she congratulates me. She still doesn’t get to the toughest pages. Right there I interrupted her.

August 12 and 13. Nothing new she told me. We only talked about my next trip. Even when I mentioned Medusa, nothing came out except that she said ‘I had read Laing again’.

Compassion doesn’t exist.

Two years later, I sent Angelica the manuscript of my second book. As psychologists are colleagues of psychiatrists, I was particularly interested in having her tell me something about such a ruthless exposé of psychiatry: something that had never before come from the pen of a fellow countryman. In 2000 she sent me an email note: ‘I think you already handle more psychology than I do. What’s more, I feel myself behind in clinic stuff; just finished my sabbatical and started writing a textbook. I really think you have a lot of easiness to express your ideas’.

Thus the same story and the same lack of compassion of two years ago was repeated. Although Angelica intended to flatter me, her missive upset me. Not only a couple of years before she hadn’t told me anything—like Tere—about the tragedy in my family with my parents. Now she wasn’t saying a word to me about the profession that helped ruin my teenage life. I must say that her position is similar to that of some friends who have focused exclusively on the literary aspect of my Letter: something that doesn’t interest me. The sole purpose of writing had been for someone to tell me something about the agony I suffered as a teenager; that it would show some indignation towards the aggressors and a society that allows such things!

Angelica had gone to live in La Paz. Due to her lack of compassion I decided to get away from her as I decided to get away from Tere. To my surprise, four years after her letter, Angelica visited Mexico City; she went around to find out my new phone number, insisted that we meet and talk in a restaurant. As a mature man, I was determined to tell Angelica that many people who, as a lad, I had taken for friends hadn’t really been friends. I alluded to the case of Tere, her former neighbour, and tried to present my arguments along the same lines to what was written in previous pages. Remember that a few years before I had sent her some drafts similar to the ones I publish in this book: texts about what I have felt about the country in which I was born. In July 2004, just a few days after we last saw each other at the restaurant, Angelica sent me an email:

Hi Caesar:

I read your book again. It’s okay. I think some things seemed too racist to me, for example your comments about your country. Your work loses value by your stupid racism: nacos, etc.

In Mexico naco designates the clumsy and uneducated Indian who emigrates to the city. If Angelica hadn’t been indoctrinated in a Marxist-Leninist university, she wouldn’t have been offended. She is a white woman who had a very handsome son, and at that time she was living with another much smaller son whose absent father was European.

You who seek to be treated as a human being don’t treat others as what you ask. It really gave me deep sadness to see you so aggressive and deteriorated.

I don’t think I told you the end of the dream. I was crying and that’s how it was. When I went on the subway, I became depressed and I broke down crying. Believe me, I esteem you more than I imagined. I really wanted to see you and hug you but your mask prevented me. Hopefully you can read this email.

A hug,

Angelica.

I didn’t answer her. The restaurant meeting had been forced, and it will surely be the last time I see her. But I would like to say something about the mask she mentioned. Angelica had had a dream, one of those that portray a situation. She had dreamt of myself as cold and distant, with a black mask; and in the dream she saw a woman who seemed responsible for all that; whom, within the same dream, Angelica related to my mother. In real life I was cold to her at the restaurant, and that was in dramatic contrast to the friendly lad Angelica had met in her apartment almost twenty years earlier. I wore a black mask in the dream and in real life I was dressed in black on my appointment with her (she was all dressed in flashy red).

Regarding her comment that she highly esteem me, I’ve also heard it from people I don’t want to see. Like Tere and Angelica, many hypocrites say they esteem me. But very few say anything meaningful to me when I open my heart to them by placing a homemade impression of the Letter in their hands: the core of my pain and the key that opens the door to my later life. Although Angelica is a professor of psychology, she didn’t show any compassion for what I told in that epistle. And from the other texts she read, it didn’t occur to her that if my father had agreed to emigrate I’d never have written a derogatory line about Mexico, although I’d have written about the United States. In her mind my cry of loneliness before a culture that is no longer mine appeared as ‘stupid racism’ (in my eleventh book in Spanish and Daybreak in English I address the issue of the word ‘racism’). More serious is that the psychology teacher had less compassion than Tere. The latter at least told me she was devastated; that only when she had the strength would she resume reading my Letter, and that at one point her eyes clouded when she read me. The professional psychologist didn’t even have that hint of pity.

It is worth saying that in 1985 Angelica had yelled at me horribly during an argument in which she agreed with my mother. And it was my mother with whom Angelica was talking about me that year! (although, unlike Tere, Angelica did it over the phone). The psychologist interpreted my belated resentment as if I was ‘aggressive and deteriorated’. Ironically, she saw me like this when I was enormously robust compared to the twenty-something lad of yesteryear. People get used to the docility of people damaged by their parents and with low self-esteem, and a change for the better is seen as a bad thing. I have only been ‘deteriorated’, to use Angelica’s word, when due to lack of a knowledgeable witness I couldn’t confront older women (Angelica and Tere are older than me).

Many years ago I witnessed how Angelica scolded her three-year-old blondish son with the threat: ‘I’m going to cut your balls!’ Betito, the European’s son, began to cry. Angelica and Tere say they esteem me. The truth is that there are many people who, like them, lack empathy for the feelings of others. What they estimate is not the real person, only a facet or one-dimensional image that they have of the person. Whoever is lucky enough to have a friendly ear, someone with whom to communicate the dimensions of the soul, knows that trying to transmit the secrets of the heart to a fellow without empathy is like speaking to Golem. Lack of empathy always has the same cause. The last time I saw her, Tere told me a creepy story perpetrated by her grandfather with his children. Once one of his sons was twelve years old, he took him to another city to abandon him. Tere’s grandpa told him that from that day on he had to subsist on his own. He didn’t even take him with a relative or acquaintances. He left him on the Mexican streets and never saw him again in life.

Tere and Angelica were, like the trio in the Cineteca gathering, victims of mistreatment. And not only that. Like those of the Cineteca they have buried the feelings of anger towards their parents. Ironically, the repression was greater in the psychology teacher than in Tere, who at least told me the story of her grandfather, or the filmmakers, who also spoke about their past. The more terrible the abuse of the parent and the greater the repression, the less empathy the daughter will develop towards her son (we can already imagine the toll that constant threats of castration can cause in a little boy of three years).

 
The analysts

There will be those who, after reading the above story, will think that there are not the psychologists, but the psychoanalysts the experts in deep psychology: professionals who take an interest in the lives of their clients, especially in the terrors of their childhood. This is a myth. I won’t repeat the exposé from my previous book on psychoanalysis because no one currently believes in its cornerstone. Freud said that his ideological edifice rested on his discovery of the Oedipus complex: that parents turn out to be a source of sexual desires for the child. It takes being too stupid, or seeing Freud as an infallible guru, to believe such a thing.

For many years Alice Miller practiced her profession as a psychoanalyst in Switzerland. In her first three books, Das Drama des begabten Kindes (The Drama of the Gifted Child), Am Anfang war Erziehung (translated as For Your Own Good) and Du Sollst Nicht Merken (Thou Shalt Not Be Aware) Miller believed that her discoveries were not incompatible with psychoanalysis. But in the late 1980s and early 90s she openly broke with her profession with the publication of Der gemiedene Schlüssel (The Untouched Key), Das verbannte Wissen (Banished Knowledge) and Abbruch der Schweigemauer (Breaking Down the Wall of Silence).

People like Miller, Jeffrey Masson, and others have found that an analyst is someone trained not to listen to his client. Before I became familiar with her thinking, which helped me distance myself even more from psychoanalysts, I used to hang out with a couple of young Lacanian analysts: Solbein and Hector Escobar. The same year that I gave copies of my manuscript to Tere and Angelica I gave another to the Escobars. Hector, who had studied psychology, loved it and devoured it in a day and a half. In a cafe he talked about my literary skills—as I said, something that irritates me to be told—and also spoke as a psychoanalyst: ‘The problem arose with that self that your mother deconstructed’. Hector was very cordial and warm, but his analytic term (‘deconstructed’) was cold and far from what my pages actually screamed (compare it with my metaphor ‘a dagger in the heart’). Solbein also liked my book and it was she who, when I sat with them in the cafe, brought up on the table the subject of the manuscript I had given them. But Solbein uttered an icy comment: she said she didn’t notice many differences with the cases she saw in her office. It was as if someone were simply telling a Gulag survivor that his story was not dissimilar to other zek stories! The way she concluded her comment was horrifyingly dry:

‘Those are common clinical experiences’.

The analyst’s words remind me neither more nor less of the infamous Dr. Amara when he read the epistle to my mother. Faced with Amara’s evasiveness in his office, I asked him: ‘But what do you think of what I say, that the cause of my problem was my mother?’ In my previous book I tell that Amara answered: ‘It’s myopia’ and that he explained that neuroses exist in every family, and that mine was just one more neurotic family. In addition to this incredible similarity, Solbein told me that the analytic thesis she was writing referred to mystical stages in people who had had absent parents. I wrote in my diary that I was surprised that she wasn’t moved by the tragedy of the physical torture my parents inflicted on me: getting out of bed every day after sleeping for only a few hours, something that has nothing to do with ‘an absent father’. Referring to their comments, in my diary I noted that these Lacanians ‘don’t touch the people, nor the Subject they talk about so much, but they invalidate him by speaking objectively about him’. Although Hector was much warmer, he listened to his wife without realising how terrible terms such as ‘clinic’ sound to those who seek consolation: a word that Angelica had also used in one of her letters. For an autobiographer immersed in the humanities, the repulsiveness of language in psychology and psychoanalysis is discovered in the following anecdote.

At the time when I gave my manuscript to the Escobars I used to eat at a restaurant in downtown Coyoacán in Mexico City, an extremely populous place. For the hermit, few things are more execrable than the crowd, the street vendors and the noise. As I didn’t have a kitchen in my home, I suffered greatly from having to fight my way through the human swarming every day when I went to eat. But, oh miracle, when I met the Escobars in that place I knew that the sacrifice of having gone there for weeks had been worth it. Out of dignity I hadn’t spoken to them on the phone to ask what they thought of my text. I hoped the initiative would come from them. But just like the day I ate with Tere in Coyoacán, my heart burned to know what the young analysts would say about my life. The daily and painstakingly crossing that crowd of Neanderthals, I told myself, was worth it to find them! (incidentally, in those days they both looked like Iberian-type whites). And it is that in my imagery prior to the meeting in the cafe I imagined a compassionate and understanding Solbein who explained to me, with her knowledge, my written confessions. But when in real life I came to what I thought would be an oasis of understanding, I found only sand. The intimate manuscript on the great odyssey of my life simply describes ‘common clinical experiences’.

Nobody wanted to listen, 4

A supposed great friend

You could tell me that I had the folly to confess to casual acquaintances; that if I had opened my heart to my closest friends, say a compassionate woman, I would have been listened to. Sadly, that is not true. In the middle of my life I know that many people who in my twenties I thought were friends offended me even more than the Cineteca acquaintances. It took me a long time to digest this bitter drink, and only thanks to my discovery of Miller. For example, a close friend named Regina told me the following (I quote from my 1998 diary): ‘“You blame everything on people and your parents. No, Caesar, no. You don’t see yourself in the mirror. You are responsible”. That was yesterday on the phone so the memory is fresh. And she even told me that David Helfgott didn’t blame his dad!’

In my discussions I frequently refer to the film Shine about David’s life, as I did in the filmmakers’ gathering, to show an extreme case of soul murder: what psychiatrists stigmatise with the term schizophrenia. Regina didn’t read Gillian Helfgott’s book where the disturbed David told his wife ‘It’s all daddy’s fault’ talking about his mental condition. Not that Regina shared the New Age philosophy that would have dwarfed the philosophers of classical German idealism (the crazy things I heard at the Cineteca for example). However, her words that ‘one is responsible’ are very common cliches in today’s culture.

In the mid-1980s, without a career or profession to face society, I took refuge in the house of Teresa Moreno: the lady who, in the narrative part [of this book], told me that she never denied the mythopoetic imagery of her children. It was Tere who would introduce me to Regina. I had known Tere since 1977 through her husband: one of the chess fans with whom I played chess in the park. Tere accepted me in her house as a Mother Teresa would accept an evicted person. At least that was the image that my friends took to be true. I don’t want to tell the story of my friendship with Tere; I’m just going to talk about how a young man can be deceived by seeing something that never was.

Before I drank from the true water of communication, as I’ll show at the end of this book, I used to see mirages in the desert. In my desperation to find a friendly ear, I imagined that just by having a few conversations with someone I could open my heart to them. Tere, as I said, sold the idea that she was compassionate with the miserable. Lots of people slept at her house and she and I had long, seemingly profound conversations. Over time, I was closer to her than to her husband. I lived with the Jiménez family for eight months in 1985. More than a dozen years later, when my unpublished autobiographical project was on track, I gave my old friend a copy of my Letter and other intimate writings.

In the case of Regina, to whom I had also given a copy of the Letter, the aberration was that that woman didn’t feel compassion for the teenager I was, but for my parents! But Regina belongs to the humble class and has a low IQ. Following the aforementioned quote from my diary about Regina, I wrote: ‘Let’s see if Tere, to whom I will deliver the manuscript soon, has compassion. Let’s see…’ When Tere read my writing she commented about our friend Regina: ‘She’s like your parents: they are the type of people who, whatever their parents do, you have to honour them’. But when we talked about what she thought herself—oh my! What better than to quote my diary again. A couple of days before I lost my thirties, I wrote:

August 10, 1998.

It was yesterday when I said goodbye to them. Tere had compassion not for me but for my father, whom she had seen the day before and, as she told me, she was ‘thinking all the time about my writing’. That the publication of my book was going to be a shock for him and that it could bump off the poor dad. Tere asked me ‘if I could forgive’ my parents and that despite being the aggressors ‘they were also victims as children’. She hasn’t finished reading my manuscript yet but stayed a few pages before the end. If she had compassion for my tragedy, she said it indirectly: ‘I will continue reading it until I feel stronger’, and that two or three times her eyes had clouded when reading it. In the end, she said that every time I went to talk to her, I ‘left her devastated’. Compassion is truly a gift that very few people have. Tere had already shown signs of lack of compassion with Sergio, whom I mentioned in the conversation yesterday.

The latter is a long and dirty story, and I will have no choice but to bring it out into the open to assess the strange morals of someone I considered a great friend.

Sergio, who had had psychotic crises as a result of being martyred at home, had been an intimate friend of Tere. His twin brother took advantage of Sergio’s relationship with Tere to woo the latter while I lived with the Jiménez family: times when the marriage between Tere and my friend Jiménez was unravelling. When I discovered that Tere preferred the twin, putting Sergio aside, her image of a compassionate and welcoming mother let me down. What shocked me was an occasion when, according to Tere herself, someone—she didn’t specify that it was Sergio—had grovelled before her in a tremendous plea not to leave him, but she coldly continued on her way. It shocked me because I guessed that this someone was Sergio, who had been driven mad by his family. Although that happened over a decade before I started my psychiatry research, I still thought it a crime for Sergio’s own monozygotic twin and ‘mother Teresa’ to betray him in such a way. Sergio was in an extreme situation. It was him, not his twin brother, who needed help. Now, having completed my psychiatry research I know that, well treated, he would have had a chance of recovery. But Tere, the twin brother and their father did the opposite (the twins’ schizophrenogenic mother had already died).

But you can’t learn from another’s mistakes. Even with such brutal evidence I didn’t eradicate from my mind Tere’s public image as a compassionate friend. Only by the end of the century, when I wrote the entry from the diary above and Sergio had already died, did I wake up to the fact that Tere was not the person I assumed to be. For example, when I was writing my diary I omitted to tell something of great importance for me. After Tere told me that she cared about my parents if I published the manuscript, we went to eat. Throughout our meal, with great and more than great expectation I waited for Tere to tell me something significant about what she had read! Quite apart from her concern for my parents, I expected her to tell me something concrete about the tragedy that I tell in the Letter. How I remember Tere’s smiles and her kindness to me while we ate: that character that has captivated so many. But the long-awaited comment didn’t come…

That day Tere died in my heart. And from that day on, not only would I not seek her friendship, but I also eluded her invitations, via third parties, to go to her and her new husband, the twin brother. Not telling me anything about what was most important to me exposed Tere as someone who had never been a true friend. Six years later, the year I sat down to write the analytical part of this book, something unexpected happened. Tere caught me in an office talking on the phone and waited to talk to me. Once again, I quote from my diary:

February 20, 2004. As much as I wanted to avoid her, she waited while I spoke and I had to let her in. Despite being so gentle, she has no empathy. Without me touching the subject, she spoke about my Letter to mom Medusa. And without me touching the subject, she again worried about the image of my parents if I published it!

She doesn’t seem to realise that just talking to my parents makes her my enemy. She even said that what they did ‘was not with bad intention’ and that her ideal was that I abandon all literary projects and resentments, and that that would be my salvation. She used completely different words, but that was her message. The poor thing doesn’t know that telling someone who has a career as a whistleblower, like telling Solzhenitsyn not to write about the Red Terror, is insulting; and although I wasn’t offended in her presence, at home I saw the absurdity of her position. Hers is none other than all that millenary ‘wisdom’ that has had human beings trapped in the sixth day of history.

Every time I see more clearly why I lost so many years of my life. I had no knowledgeable witnesses. Tere is so cute that the fallacies of her speech aren’t noticeable when being with her. But they are paradigms of pedagogical attitudes, as Miller would say, the most harmful attitudes in the world. Not long ago, as she confessed to me yesterday, she spoke to my mother. Tere told me that, since I didn’t visit my parents, my mother had told her that I was ‘very strange’, that that was my character. Although she said it with no intention of offending me, here I got her by the ovaries [vulgarism for ‘I got her’, more common in Mexico as referring to male balls]. It is clear that Tere doesn’t see my tragedy. She denies it. Her advice is not aimed at bullies to change their ways. They are aimed at the victim to try impossible oblivion…

Once again, ‘poisonous pedagogy’ in action.

—impossible because of the null employment opportunities after I lost my profession since the times of the abuse. Tere is asking me that, while her son in Switzerland is studying with his Aryan girlfriend, I, who haven’t even had a real partner, must ‘forget’ my destiny. Her anti-empathy, so evident in the fact that she sees my mother and they are friends, speaks for itself. Not only Tere lacks compassion. Look at the dirty way she treated Sergio. What she told me yesterday corroborates what I thought of her. Hopefully I won’t see her again. She is still on my blacklist and I hope she will have a place in one of my books. After reading Miller I see that people like Tere have played the role of villains in my life. Before Miller, people like Tere confused me greatly and were the cause of my stagnation in life, of not making contact with the feelings of the attacked, tortured and destroyed teen I carry inside. But the light has already reached me, and thanks to having unmasked people like Tere.

Seeing these passages published from an intimate diary will seem cruel to some of my readers. It won’t seem cruel, on the other hand, that someone who I considered my great friend has visited, over the years and behind my back, the person who destroyed me. As I said, in a world where everything is turned upside down, it is not the cruelty of parents to their children that causes scandal, but the denunciation of that cruelty and its accomplices.

Tere’s words move me to add one more page against forgiveness and forgetting. Tere had asked me if I could forgive my parents and commented that they too had been victims. This hasn’t been the first time that I have received this little piece of advice. As we saw on previous pages I have heard it from other people, including my cousin Carmina. The folly of this demand to the victim is already answered in what I wrote in my diary: Tere should have asked my parents to examine their conscience, not the victim to forgive those who avoid any examination.

The belief that forgiveness has a healthy effect is axiomatic in all cultures, and it seems so obvious that it is taken for granted. But the truth is that forgiving an unredeemed parent is psychological suicide. Miller presents a devastating argument: at the behest of the therapist, a man abused in his childhood forgave his father—a sadist—and later he committed an inexplicable murder. This is because the hatred towards the aggressor still dwells, unconsciously, in the forgiver. Hatred cannot be exorcised by force of will. Unilaterally, forgiveness is impossible. Authentic forgiveness is feasible only if the aggressor recognises his fault and does something very concrete to make amends to his victim: bilateral forgiveness. I never tire of repeating that this is impossible as long as the aggressor insists that he acted well. Poisonous pedagogy (*), and I’d venture to say pedagogical attitudes in general, are based on this inversion of the most elemental psychological reality. Ultimately, the values of the world’s cultures towards the victim of parental abuse must be transvalued. Miller’s argument against forgiveness in several of her texts is compelling: and those who believe that one-sided forgiveness has a salutary effect would do well to study the lives of serial killers. To illustrate this argument in less extreme cases, I will mention something that appears in Susan Forward’s Toxic Parents. To her clients who come to her office saying that they have already forgiven their abusive parents, Forward demands that they have to ‘unforgive’ them until they make contact with their unconscious rage. Otherwise nuclear hatred is still there, and like the subject who committed an inexplicable murder, the natural reaction is to displace it towards substitute people: their children or the partner.

Ultimately, no one has come as far as I have. I am the first to do so in eleven autobiographical books so that the subject of soul murder becomes as didactic as possible before an ignorant world. My friend Tere was unable to understand this new literary genre at a time when I was just writing my third book.

___________

(*) Literally translated from German, Schwarze Pädagogik would be ‘black pedagogy’.

Published in: on October 12, 2020 at 4:42 pm  Comments Off on Nobody wanted to listen, 4  

Nobody wanted to listen, 3

Offended by casual acquaintances

Some would say that Gerardo, from whom I would also distance myself, didn’t tell me anything about my manuscripts because, as a relative, he didn’t want to commit himself. But there have been other filmmakers who have nothing to do with my family and who behaved worse when I brought up the subject of what happened to me as a teen.

In 2003 I used to go to some get-togethers of filmmakers, all of them older than me, who met at noon on Sundays at the Cineteca café in Mexico City. One of those Sundays Elsié Méndez, Fernando Gou and his wife [none of them swarthy by the way] offended me in such a way that I didn’t visit again those gatherings that I hadn’t missed since I met them. Elsié was infuriated by my feelings of outrage at the abuse of minors: she felt threatened. But laughing at one’s suffering during puberty, which she usually does in social gatherings, is a way to avoid pain and to mourn behind walls. As Miller has said, that was the nonsense Frank McCourt did in Angela’s Ashes, which even before I discovered Miller irritated me. In his autobiography McCourt never spoke out against his parents or the culture that tormented him. Rather, and like Elsié, he laughs at his past: and precisely for laughing at the tragedy of his childhood he has been applauded in a world steeped in poisonous pedagogy. I confess that what irritated me the most about Angela’s Ashes when it was released were the reviews I read when I lived in Houston: they praised the author’s non-judgmental stance.

Contrary to popular belief, laughing at extreme parental abuse doesn’t cure the internal injury that the abuse caused. The diametrically opposite heals: crying. The raucous anger at the aggressors with which I used to express myself in the gathering is also curative. Miller has said that if Sylvia Plath had written aggressive letters to her abusive mother—remember my Letter—she wouldn’t have had to commit suicide. I lost years of my life by not prosecuting my parents and their society, as I do now. Before I found a knowledgeable witness to guide me into the forbidden territory of healthy hatred, the guilt complex kept me from getting ahead in life. It took entire ages for me to denounce the cruelty of my parents. But in our world it is very common that it’s not cruelty towards children that causes anger, but the denunciation of that cruelty.

For example, seeing my anger at my parents, both Elsié and Mr. Fernando jumped on me to protect their parents from their unconscious anger. Like everything belonging to Alcoholics Anonymous, Mr. Fernando has avoided thoroughly confronting the figure of the father. In Neurotics Anonymous, which I had attended only once twenty years earlier, I witnessed the victim publicly venting out in free associations. I don’t object to this catharsis, but both groups completely omit the elementary: devising social engineering scenarios to eliminate domestic violence towards the child who, already grown up, takes refuge in drinking or neurotic defense mechanisms to mitigate his pain. Part of this pedagogic attitude, understood as ‘educating’ the victim (‘poisonous pedagogy’) instead of social engineering, can be illustrated by the question that Rocío, Fernando’s wife, asked me about my parents:

‘Have you forgiven them already?’

This woman, whose nose was broken by her father, reversed reality with her question. Her negative photographic vision has to do with the false feelings of guilt that prevent us from putting the criminal father on the dock. Whoever is not under the influence of poisonous pedagogy asks the natural question and directs it to the aggressor, not to his victim: Have you already asked your daughter for forgiveness? Society not only ignores that unilateral forgiveness is impossible; not only does it not penalise parental abuse but, seeing the reverse reality, it turns its weapons against the victim who complains about the unredeemed parent. We can already imagine what effect it would have to ask a Russian Gulag survivor if he has already forgiven Stalin’s willing executioners while they still believe they did the right thing.

If the filmmakers of the gathering reflected on the films that they comment on Sundays, they would realise the absurdity of their position. Consider the documentary S-21: La Machine de Mort Khmère Rouge by Rithy Pahn, shown at the Cineteca itself. In this shocking testimony a survivor of the genocide of the 1970s in Cambodia tells the camera that while some dupes speak of forgiveness and forgetfulness, it is not possible to do so while the executioners of two million Cambodian civilians, including young children, not only are not sorry. They don’t even acknowledge that they made a mistake! The same can be said of unrepentant parents who are not aware that they have harmed their child. Unilateral forgiveness is so artificial, feigned and illusory that, at the time when I argued at the Cineteca, Mrs. Rocío didn’t visit her father, who was dying of cancer. But yes: she and her friends demand unilateral forgiveness from me. The ‘Have you forgiven them already?’ tacitly implies that Rocío had unilaterally forgiven her father, something she didn’t do in real life. Commenting on the heated discussion that Sunday, Pancho Sánchez, the author of several film books who presides over these gatherings, told me alone that those who say they have no resentment towards their aggressors were hypocrites.

That impossible forgiveness that a society blind and deaf in psychological matters demands in unison is one of the main features of what Miller calls poisonous pedagogy, and it will be a subject to which I will have to return later. Nowadays, when I openly express my resentments towards my parents—as in the gathering of film fans—I am unable to take it out on others. If I had been given a lesson at school against an absorbing mother’s behaviour, perhaps I would have made contact with my feelings and not wanted to spill them on Elvira [recounted in the previous section]. But school, society, including my educated relatives, see to it that those feelings never surface. But they are there, in the psychic core and eventually they erupt either against the aggressor in the form of an accusatory epistle—a direct and healthy hatred—or against substitute objects: a displaced and insane hatred.

I must clarify that in a meeting with other film fans at the Cineteca my testimony was very well received, and even a lady encouraged me to ‘get it all out’ as the best therapy. It was only at the table that gathered some individuals who had been mistreated in their childhoods when resistance arose. Like my sister Korina, they did this to avoid feeling their own pain. The only way to convey the intensity of the emotions in the discussion that day is to quote my personal diary, even if I have to correct the syntax and rewrite some passages in addition to omitting some insults (not all). Bear in mind that the films that I saw then were pure anti-German propaganda filmed by Jews: something that, as we shall see in The Grail, I didn’t know at the time.

October 26, 2003

Today the damaged ones attacked me. Some of the things I heard were beyond incredible: ‘You have to blame yourself for everything that happens to you; otherwise you have no power over your life’. Elsié believes that she has a power that she doesn’t have. And Fernando the same.

When I came up with my favourite arguments to refute them, suitable arguments for moviegoers—Sophie’s Choice, a movie that everyone saw, and the girl raped by her father—the incredible happened: the victims were blamed. Elsié commented: ‘They are already thinking about how it was possible that they went like lambs to the slaughterhouse’. That is to say: there are no culprits. Regarding Sophie, they denied my thesis that the only thing she could do was what she did: commit suicide. As to the other case, they said that the girl could perfectly rebuild her life as an adult. In other words: no people are destroyed.

Fernando was more aggressive. When I said that only those who get to the core of pain pull the dagger out of their hearts and that the approach of those in Alcoholics Anonymous was epidermal, he replied that I was ‘arrogant’, and that Alcoholics Anonymous was about ‘reducing the ego’ in the sense of not seeing your pain but that of others. This is just the opposite of my autobiography, which, while I see things like the Gulag, the starting point is my own life. The way Fernando spoke of the ego was like saying that you have to forget in order to forgive.

Pancho, the only one who was not a victim of beating at puberty, didn’t attack me. Reason? He lacks an idiotic defence mechanism that I unintentionally triggered with my observations. Now I will have to stop seeing them because I see that, with that mental block, a genuine friendship couldn’t prosper. I’d have to go just to listen and shut up when the victims are blamed, something I’m not willing to do. The funny thing is that I unwittingly provoked them so that Rocío and Elsié would talk about the most horrendous stories of parental abuse in their lives. Even Fernando said that when he told his father that he wanted to study oratory, he replied: ‘You stutterer are not good for that!’

All three, damaged. Fernando, remember, was an alcoholic for many years. He was extremely pissed off that I said I had found the dagger in my heart—the internalised parents—and the way to pull it out, and that I doubted Alcoholics Anonymous, analysts, and psychiatrists could pull it out (‘arrogance’). The one who surprised me the most was Elsié, because on another occasion she had understood Fernando’s repression about his pain and today she changed sides. When I mentioned the case of Sor Juana, everyone came out that she, not the archbishop and Miranda, was the winner! I told them about Juana’s self-immolation and they said that the world remembers her. This reasoning is so stupid that it is not worth refuting.

Octavio Paz wrote a great book about how an archbishop and a confessor cornered Juana de Asbaje.

A real pandemonium of the status quo reaction was triggered today by my attackers. In a soliloquy that I just threw on the street, I realised that the hatred towards the victim—reminiscent of Dr. Amara, the psychiatrists, and the serial killer Miller speaks of—is because they cannot bear the pain of having been themselves victims. Not wanting to see their total helplessness, they come out with ‘I’m over it’, ‘You have to forgive’, ‘You have to forget’ and so on. The worst thing is when they repeat the social clichés, the most nefarious of all, like the one that those stagnated in life haven’t wanted to get out of their victimising stance. I tried to refute them with the case of the Eschatology cult [see the first article in Daybreak] in which I was and chess: that only when I wasn’t aware of the role my parents played did I get stuck and was a looser. That made Fernando angry, who told me things that hurt me, and Elsié and Rocío supported him.

But here’s their story…

Elsié was married when she was almost a child and her abusive father told her: ‘Just one piece of advice: always say yes to your husband’. Already married she cried and cried and didn’t know why. She had two horrendous marriages in which she was beaten. She repeated the patterns of a battered woman with her husbands, she couldn’t get rid of them: something had her ass hooked to them. Rocío’s father broke her nose at age twenty because she dared to confront him with a ‘Why?’ when her father told her ‘You won’t speak to that boy again’ (Fernando). When his father got home, all her siblings shit out of fear. He always beat them undeservedly. They continued with their public confessions but the essential is understood: they told horror stories and cannot see another victim who now wants to make a literary career on the subject. It is painful for them and for Fernando who, although he didn’t say many things due to male circumspection, it is clear that his father crushed him.

The funny thing is that both Rocío (‘have you forgiven them yet?’) and Elsié (credulous of psychoanalysis) and Fernando (credulous of Alcoholics Anonymous) have as a defence mechanism the New Age bullshit that one is ‘the arbiter of one’s own destiny’. Everything has to do with not facing the pain: especially the pain that impotence in childhood was total: the opposite of the lies of the New Age. Ah! I had forgotten to say that Elsié came out with a BS similar to that of Arnaldo Vidal about his brother Juan Carlos, who told me that ‘it made him very comfortable to be sick’. Elsié told me that David Helfgott wanted to stay as a child.

Juan Carlos Vidal, an acquaintance of my family and grandson of the famous Victor Serge, became a mentally-ill lad because of the behaviour of his parents. Helfgott also became ‘schizophrenic’ for the same causes. The filmmakers knew the latter case very well from the movie Shine. The grotesque thing about their position is that if I took them to an asylum, they would say that all diagnosed as schizophrenics found it very comfortable to stay as children.

That’s why Elsié and Fernando get hooked into victim-blame philosophies like psychoanalysis and AA: it is their defence mechanism to believe that they had more power than they actually had. Remember, Caesar, how twenty years ago it bewildered me in Neurotics Anonymous when they talked about ‘selfishness’, and that because of that ‘selfishness’ the poor devils who went there were in bad shape. Whoever presided over that place blamed herself and the rest of the group for their emotional state. I never imagined when I left in the morning that this would be the last day that I go to the gatherings at the Cineteca. The way Elsié and Fernando spoke today was to repeat the social slogans that ‘negative thinking’, mine supposedly, hurts; and rosy glasses heal. And by the way, two of Rocío’s sisters didn’t marry and don’t see their father.

There’s something esle. Both Elsié and Rocío had helping witnesses: their own siblings. But they condemn those who didn’t have them: Caesar, Helfgott, Sor Juana. Also, they don’t want to see that there is a stark difference between the pain of a woman like the one in the movie Sophie’s Choice—I used this example many times—and other pains. Fernando got pissed off and said that the pains cannot be compared. Neither he nor Elsié know that there is a limit of resilience in human pain. If that limit is crossed, the mind breaks down.

In the section on Shine of my previous book I spoke about the latter: an argument that I brought up in one of the previous gatherings but that Mr. Fernando ignored.

Their ravings—that Sor Juana emerged triumphantly; blaming Helfgott, and denying that only suicide could detonate Sophia’s mountain of pain—are clear proof that my arguments were devastating. They had to come out really crazy when I put them on the defensive. Another thing. If someone comes to Alcoholics Anonymous in trauma, the worst thing they can tell him is that he has to ‘get down on the ego’. His damage is in the ego, not in an inflated ego as Fernando believes, but in a wounded ego. The climax of yesterday’s psychotic breakdown were Elsié’s words: ‘You have to blame yourself’ for everything that happens to me in order to ‘have control over life.’

The New Age doctrines are so absurd that they would even lead us to blame the passenger victims of a plane crash. It is so unnecessary to spend ink in refuting them that I better continue with my diary:

Another breakdown: when I mentioned the example of Auschwitz Rocío jumped up claiming that the prisoners in concentration camps had control in some way, meaning that those who survived were the good guys. It is this type of psychotic breakdown in the face of my arguments that makes it unjustified to return to sit at their table. But yes: I will nail them in my books…

October 28. I’ve been thinking more about what happened on Sunday and discovered a thing or two. Both Fernando and Elsié are in cults. I was ignorant of it, so I didn’t realise that saying that Alcoholics Anonymous therapy was ‘skin deep’ was going to cause anger and rage from the cultists. Likewise, when I spoke of Sophie’s pain, they came out with the idea that ‘pain can be an incentive for life’. As if any pain and Sophie’s were the same!, who was made to choose, in front of her children, which of them went to the gas chambers: the fateful ‘Sophie’s choice’.

As I said, what bothers this trio the most is the impotence in the face of evil and the criminal will of the Other. In order not to feel their pain (‘blame oneself’, ‘reduce ego’, ‘forgive’, ‘pain can be a spur for life’) they insulted me. Elsié, it hurts me to say it because at the time she hurt me, told me that self-pity was the worst, and that one had to get out of that victimising position. I felt very bad when, following that line, these idiots blamed the prisoners of the concentration camps. And by the way, Fernando’s bilious zeal when speaking of the ‘Higher Power’, an entity that is instilled in them in Alcoholics Anonymous, was very similar to my old father’s zeal when speaking of God. It is clear that it is the zeal of a cultist.

A few words about self-help groups in general and Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) in particular are worth it. In short, it is not enough that some people are willing to listen to our problems, even our deepest demons, as is done in such groups. The victim of abuse must have an enlightened witness: someone who doesn’t come up with idiotic defence mechanisms in the face of tragedy. Now, the difference between the hearing of an enlightened witness and a simple audience such as Alcoholics Anonymous is abysmal. I know a subject who was in AA whom I had to distance myself from because, although he overcame his alcoholism, he displaces hidden anger on his friends. Likewise, there are AA people who transfer their alcoholism to bulimic behaviour, or become addicted to gambling because their psychic damage was never addressed. They are called ‘dry alcoholics’. The dry guy I distanced myself from, for example, once he got over his alcoholism took refuge in chess. He never processed his pain. Divorced and with two small daughters living with their mother, this mature man displaces his anger on others. Alcohol is a balm for pain that the mind is unable to process. Alcoholics Anonymous will have saved him from that false balm, but not from his pain.

Mr. Fernando got very angry when I said that AA therapy was skin deep. But that is exactly what these types of therapies are. Only the enlightenment that comes from an ‘accomplice witness’—a better translation than ‘knowledgeable witness’, one of Miller’s terms [she wrote in German]—along with writing about our lives, can result in true psychological healing.

The key to the keys, Caesar, is that you cannot argue with people who blame the victims of the concentration camps. Exercising such violence to reality hides an infinite aversion to the fact that there is Evil in the world and that we have no control over the evil acts of others. But I’m going to leave these people alone. It’s already eighteen pages of my diary. It’s so sad that I can’t make friends in a world like this…

Remember that, in those days, those movie fans and I watched Hollywood films and knew nothing about the malicious anti-German propaganda or the Jewish question. Independently of that, the disagreement at the Cineteca hurt me in such a way that I promised myself that this would be the last time I would behave cordially with those who, in the future, offend me with poisonous pedagogies. During the 2003 discussion I was still reticent to speak out all of it. I didn’t respond to the filmmakers as vehemently as, alone, I did in my diary, but rather respected social conventions. But respecting them leaves the offended with an irresistible desire for revenge, as we will see in the next few pages.

Published in: on October 10, 2020 at 7:32 pm  Comments (1)