“Fact is there’s nothin’ out there you can’t do. Yeah, even Santa Claus believes in you.”
–Dr. Teeth And The Electric Mayhem, “Can You Picture That?”
Welcome to Butterfly Language, a look at the world inside and outside my head!
A popular trope in the original 1960s Star Trek is that of the “ordinary” person receiving the powers of a god. When we learn that the show’s creator, Gene Roddenberry, was involved in stuff like the channelling of the so-called “Council of Nine”…well, it’s not that big a surprise that this is the trope he chose to go back to over and over again.
I’ve already analyzed the original Star Trek pilot, “The Cage,” in this post; in that episode, we have not humans with this omnipotent mental powers, but some bubble-headed aliens (who just happen to fit the Lam archetype). Now, in the second Star Trek pilot, “Where No Man Has Gone Before”—the one that actually won Roddenberry an order for the series—we meet Gary Mitchell, a helmsman for the doomed Valiant who gets blasted with mysterious alien “rays” that give him fantastic mental powers.
Mitchell was an old school chum of Captain Kirk’s, so the latter thinks nothing about inviting him on the Enterprise after the Valiant is mysteriously destroyed. Slowly it dawns on Kirk that Mitchell is crazier than a shithouse rat, due to that intense blast of ESP powers.
Mitchell was played by Gary Lockwood—who would also appear a few years later in that classic movie about the next step in the evolution of humanity, 2001: A Space Odyssey. And so every time I watch “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” I can’t help but think of that film.
Now: the second episode of the actual Star Trek series (the first being the more traditional sci-fi yarn “The Man Trap”) is “Charlie X”…which once again rehashes this trope (“Where No Man Has Gone Before” is aired the next week).
17-year-old Charlie Evans was a normal human boy whose family perished in a space accident; he has been raised by aliens who have given him fantastic psychic and reality-shaping powers. If you think this is all going to end with Charlie on the Enterprise going crazier than a shithouse rat—you win the plush pony!
As we consider the plight of psychic wunderkind Charlie Evans, let’s remember who was heavily involved in the “Nine” channeling efforts—Dr. Andrija Puharich, the mentor of “real life” psychic wunderkind/celebrity Uri Geller. Now, both Puharich & Geller believed that the latter derived his “powers” from whom???
Per Geller’s own website, in a post provocatively called “Plan Nine From Outer Space”:
I am the beginning. I am the end. I am the emissary. But the original time I was on the Planet Earth was 34,000 of your years ago. I am the balance. And when I say “I” – I mean because I am an emissary for The Nine. It is not I , but it is the group…We are nine principles of the Universe, yet together we are one.
The declaration above is typical of the channelled pronouncements of the Council of Nine – or just ‘The Nine’. They contain all the usual New Age ingredients of grandiose statements, shaky grammar and unprovable predictions. But unlike all the other channelling cults, that of The Nine has serious clout. Perhaps the reason for this is that they claim to be the Ennead, or the nine major gods of ancient Egypt (see panel). Or could there be another reason, one that owes more to The X-Files than the Pyramid Texts?
Although The Nine may appear to be quintessentially a modern phenomenon, our research uncovered its truly astonishing pedigree. In fact, the story begins nearly 50 years ago, in a private research laboratory in Glen Cove, Maine, called the Round Table Foundation, run by a medical doctor named Andrija Puharich (also known as Henry K Puharich).
AND (remember, this is the dude who said he was psychically gonna stop BREXIT):
Puharich, Whitmore and Schlemmer then set up Lab Nine at Puharich’s estate in Ossining, New York. The Nine’s disciples included multi-millionaire businessmen (many hiding behind pseudonyms and including members of Canada’s richest family, the Bronfmans), European nobility, scientists from the Stamford Research Institute and at least one prominent political figure who was a personal friend of President Gerald Ford.
We also know that Lyall Watson (then the darling of the alternative scene because of his seminal 1973 book Supernature) was involved, as was the influential counter-culture guru Ira Einhorn – and Gene Roddenberry, creator of Star Trek…Roddenberry was part of that circle in 1974 and 1975, and even produced the screenplay for a movie about The Nine. How much he was influenced by them is unknown, although it is said that some of their concepts found their way into the early Star Trek movies, and The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine (what a giveaway!) series.
But I would say that Roddenberry had these ideas way before the Star Trek movies.
Oh, Ira Einhorn, huh?
Also, I’d just like to point out…that Geller post was actually not written by him but was a reprint from an old Fortean Times article. But just the way he reprinted it…you know, it sounds like he’s saying this shit first-person (which I’m pretty sure is the idea).
I wish I had the balls to announce that “I am the emissary” and all this other space-messiah jazz on my blog like Uri Geller does.
“I am the turtle-wax. I am the fuzzy end of the lollipop. I am the walrus.”
Oh…WHAT YEAR did Roddenberry supposedly get involved with The Nine???
I received…an intuition (you know, as part of a meditation/creative exercise to tap into what I already know) to start going through my official personal journals—which start in December 2012, though some earlier nuggets are collected in “De Vinculis”—and start “mining” them for pertinent content. Not so much publishing passages verbatim (though some of that, obviously, too), as using the content as “springboards” for new stuff here. As I’ve just done in this post, riffing off of a journal entry from 12/29/12.
What is the purpose? To try to get at the most relevant, interesting stuff in the most efficient way possible & presenting it on this site.
To that end: while I think this was a rather pop-culture-centric post—I mean, fucking Star Trek, for fuck’s sake—I might push some of the more non-esoteric current-events type pop-culture musings onto Fantasy Merchant moving forward. We’ll see. I go where the “muse” takes me (she pays me in “exposure,” the sweetheart).