The Cosmic Trigger Experience — Two Days That Shook The Wirrall

Adam Gorightly at The Find The Others Conferestival, Liverpool, England, Nov. 23, 2014. Photo by Adam Clark.

Last November, during the Discordian Holy Days of November 22nd and 23rd, I had the distinct and mind blowing privilege to attend the Cosmic Trigger Play and Find The Others Conferestival in Liverpool, England, the cradle of yellow submarine civilization.

I’d planned to do a write up of the Cosmic Trigger event, but each time I attempted to put pen to paper, I felt I could never do justice to the experience, as it had a profound effect on me—equally hilarious and heartbreaking—and each time I attempted to write about it, my words fell short.

Fortunately, Ian “Cat” Vincent did all the heavy lifting for me in his review of the event from the December 2014 issue of Fortean Times and gave us the go ahead to reprint it. Goddess willing, Daisy Eris Campbell and Her Band of Merry Pranksters will soon bring their glory to us from across the pond. Hail Eris and keep the rainbow knickers flying!
Adam Gorightly


The Cosmic Trigger Experience —
Two Days That Shook The Wirrall

by Ian Vincent

“This is too important to take seriously.”
Robert Anton Wilson (1932-2007 CE)

This is not, and could never have been, an objective review. Robert Anton Wilson matters too much to me.

Wilson – writer, philosopher, occasional past Fortean Times contributor and woefully unsung cultural influence on everything from conspiracy theory to comic books – matters to Daisy Campbell, too. She literally would not be the woman she is today without him.

Daisy Eris Campbell was conceived backstage at the Liverpool School of Language, Music, Dream and Pun, during her father Ken Campbell’s ground-breaking stage adaptation there in 1976 of Wilson and Robert Shea’s novel Illuminatus! (“It was a long play” noted her mother, actress Prunella Gee.) Unsurprisingly, theatre was in Daisy’s blood and drew her on to work with her father on his 24-hour-long adaptation of Neil Oram’s The Warp and other productions.

A while after Ken’s death in 2008, several people approached Daisy about the possibility of her directing a revival of Illuminatus! for the stage. This idea didn’t appeal – but the string of synchronicity which had begun at the moment of her conception seemed to be tugging her towards doing something connected to both Wilson and Ken’s work. Daisy’s idea was to create a stage version of Wilson’s autobiography, Cosmic Trigger: Final Secret of the Illuminati which, since it included scenes from when Wilson came over to London to meet Ken and make a cameo appearance in the notorious Black Mass scene in Illuminatus!, would allow her to pay homage to both Wilson and her dad alike. The fact that Daisy had just reached the same age as her father was when he mounted Illuminatus! was icing on the golden apple.

After getting both the blessing and the rights to the book from Wilson’s surviving daughter, Daisy (along with co-conspirator John Higgs, author of the recent splendidly Discordian biography of The KLF, whose Bill Drummond worked on the Illuminatus! sets) took to the road to both promote the entirely crowd-funded show and test out early scenes with a hopefully sympathetic audience. It’s here that I enter the story.

In October of 2013 (on the 23rd, of course), Daisy and Higgs appeared at London’s Horse Hospital venue with a pair of talks about both Wilson and the production, and to offer a couple of preview scenes to view – and I made a point of being there. Wilson had been a significant influence on me since my early teens, and I was delighted to see a revival of interest in his work, especially in times where rising dualistic us-and-them narratives trouble the globe… maybe a little of Wilson’s multi-model approach and Gnostic Agnosticism coming back into the cultural conversation could help, in some small way.

The preview scenes – a meeting between Wilson, William S. Burroughs, Alan Watts and his wife at Playboy Magazine in 1968, and an interview with Ken Campbell during the Illuminatus! production&mdashwere smart, funny and hinted that the final production would be something special. Adding further interest was the news that writer, magician and Wilson fan Alan Moore would be contributing his recorded voice and visage to the play in the role of the artificial intelligence FUCKUP.

Cut to February 23, 2014.

Daisy and Higgs brought their act to the Kazimer Theatre in Liverpool. With the crowdfunding well on course and the play close to having a finished script, the next question was: where to mount the play? Daisy’s first instinct was Liverpool – both for the connection to Ken’s original and the synchronistic echoes with both the production and the life-changing vision of C.G. Jung, who had once dreamed that Liverpool, a city he had never before visited, was the Pool Of Life. The Kazimer gathering was partly to share the progress, show some exclusive footage on Alan Moore talking about Wilson’s influence on both his attitude to conspiracy theory and magic, and to air another preview scene – a recreation of Wilson’s first LSD trip. All of these were spectacularly impressive – especially the LSD sequence, which successfully employed clever scene-changing, music and some heart-rending acting from Oliver Senton, the actor cast as Wilson. By the end, it was clear that Liverpool was going to be the right place.

Following the performance, a group of us went to Mathew Street, just down from where the old Cavern Club had stood, to conduct a small street ritual to the bust of Jung there, which had been commissioned by Peter O’Halligan, founder of the Liverpool School of Language, Music, Dream and Pun, many years before. Being not unfamiliar with the idea of street magic, I suggested we combine the ritual with a calling upon the synchronistic powers of Alan Moore’s Liverpool-born creation, John Constantine… and so we did.

(For more about this event and ritual, see my Daily Grail post: http://tinyurl.com/cosmicliverpool)

By the time the play was ready for its first performance on November 22nd at the Camp And Furnace venue in Liverpool’s docklands, the weekend of its premiere had expanded considerably – Daisy and her cohorts not being the type to do things by halves, it was now going to be a two day celebration of the thought and works of both Wilson and Ken Campbell.

The play itself began by setting out a new standard instruction for theatre… “Start with a striptease, and then build to a climax”. The striptease is a recreation of the story of Ishtar, surrendering all her clothes and symbols before entering, naked and pure, into Hell. From there, Senton’s Wilson takes up the tale of how he entered that most illuminating of Hells, The Chapel Perilous – from which one can only emerge as a stone paranoid, or an agnostic.

There are many astonishing things about the play of Cosmic Trigger itself: the sheer range of emotion and theatrical styles (from hilarity to tragedy, from crisp two-person dialogue scenes to full-blown song-and-dance numbers); the dedication and enthusiasm of the cast (all were excellent, but stand-outs were Senton, Kate Alderton as his wife Arlen, Josh Darcy as Ken Campbell and 15 year old Dixie McDevitt, Daisy’s daughter, as Luna Wilson); the back-projected sets by Scott McPherson combined with recreation of Bill Drummond’s original Illuminatus! sets; Steve Fly’s music, songs and live drumming… but one thing I especially appreciated was the skill with which Daisy adapted Wilson’s book with great fidelity, while not allowing it to fall into hagiography – both Bob and Ken are shown as fragile, deeply human men, faults and all – and their work all the better for it.

It is also likely to remain the only stage production in which a woman, playing her own mother, recreates the moment of her own conception.

The rest of the festival was overflowing with joys. The evening show following the performance included outstanding work from a range of performers, including Ken’s former lover & protege Nina Conti, whose skilled and twisted ventriloquism routine had the audience crying with laughter, and music from T. C. Lethbridge and a DJ set from Youth of Killing Joke.

The Sunday – the 23rd, Harpo Marx’s birthday – was no less significant, with a range of talks, workshops and performances. It began with a powerfully moving ritual to the Ancestors, given by Rupert and Claire Callender of the Green Funeral Company (http://www.thegreenfuneralcompany.co.uk/). Speakers included Robert Temple (whose book ‘The Sirius Mystery’ had been such an influence on Wilson and who coined the term Cosmic Trigger), Discordian archivist Adam Gorightly and Robin Ince (who spoke movingly and hilariously of his love of Wilson’s angle on skepticism). The art show contained contributions from the likes of Jimmy Cauty, the other half of the KLF (who also designed the posters) and Melinda Gebbie. There were also bands, DJ sets and a film show (which included one of Wilson’s favourites, Orson Welles’ ‘F For Fake’ and the first showing of the video of Alan Moore’s ‘Moon and Serpent Grand Egyptian Theatre of Marvels’ performance/ritual of 1994).

And then there was one last twist for me… when Daisy asked if I happened to be an ordained priest (I am – thanks, Universal Life Church!) because she had decided that it was the perfect day to marry her long time partner, Greg Donaldson – “all my friends are here!”. It was half-improvised, a bit ramshackle in places… but, somehow, a glorious wedding. Much like the whole event.

‘Cosmic Trigger’ the play went on to a sold-out 5 performance run in London the following week. Plans are being made for an international tour. Keep an eye on cosmictriggerplay.com for details.

Fnord.

Posted in art, book, daisy eris campbell, discordianism, illuminati, monkey business, robert anton wilson, robert shea, video, writings | Leave a comment

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May 2015 Eris of the Month: Eris on a Hot Rod by ManicTheDoodler

May 2015 Eris of the Month, 'Eris on a Hot Rod' by ManicTheDoodler.



Send us your Eris of the Month Club submissions (more info here)
by using the form at the bottom of The MGT. page.

Hail Eris! All Hail Discordia!

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New Discordian Zine: Discordia Britannica

Hot off the presses is Discordia Britannica, the product of a couple Liverpudian Discordians named Lucas and Jason who informed me that, “We like the home-made look of it—it reminds us of things we used to pick up all the time but never see anymore.”

Featured in this first edition is an interview with RAW conducted by Lewis Shiner that originally appeared in issue #5 of Trajectories (not to be confused with RAW’s magazine by the same name), a Sci-Fi zine published by Richard Shannon in Austin, Texas in the late-80s, as well as a Q&A with Anton Newcombe of Brian Jonestown Massacre—not to mention an article by yours truly entitled “The Dead Comedian Conspiracy.”

For more info email discordian9@gmail.com or check ‘em out on facebook.

Posted in art, discordianism, monkey business, robert anton wilson, writings, zines | Leave a comment

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AUDIO: 1992 Interview of Kerry Thornley by Kenn Thomas: THE IDLE WARRIORS

From one of Adam Gorightly‘s cassette tapes courtesy of Steamshovel Press

Kerry Thornley interviewed by Kenn Thomas about the IllumiNet Press publication of Thornley’s The Idle Warriors. Youtubed by Floyd Anderson.

READ A CHAPTER EXCERPT of the The Idle Warriors.

Posted in audio, book, brother-in-law, discordianism, floyd anderson, illuminet press, interview, jfk, jim garrison, kerry thornley, lee harvey oswald, video, writings | Leave a comment

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The Blind JFK Researcher Meets Adam Gorightly

Courtesy of The Ochelli Effect.

Posted in book, charles manson, discordianism, interview, jfk, jim garrison, kerry thornley, lee harvey oswald, video | Leave a comment

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VIDEO: Cosmic Trigger Theatrical Promo

Cosmic Trigger Theatrical Promo from C S on Vimeo.

Promo for the Cosmic Trigger theatrical experience!

http://www.cosmictriggerplay.com/

Shot by: Laurence Blyth, Beccy Strong, Emma George, Nic Alderton.
Edit: Nic Alderton.

Posted in art, book, daisy eris campbell, discordianism, illuminati, kerry thornley, monkey business, play, robert anton wilson, timothy leary, video | 2 Comments

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Illuminatus! Group Reading Week 62: The Epistle to the Paranoids

Cover, Illuminatus! Leviathan

On page 657 of Illuminatus!, a quote from Lord Omar Khayyam Ravenhurst (aka Kerry Thornley) starts out The Tenth Trip chapter with:

“Ye have locked yerselves up in cages of fear; and, behold, do ye now complain that ye lack freedom.”

It was this same quote that RAW used in his foreword to my bio of Thornley, The Prankster and the Conspiracy.

As RAW wrote in regards to the quote:

“Kerry Thornley wrote those words in the mid 1960s and within 10 years he had become a clinical paranoid himself, in the judgment of almost all of his friends, including Dr Robert Newport,  a psychiatrist who had known Kerry since high school. The moral of this seems to me: take great care which nut cases you dare to mock, for you may become one of them.”

In Illuminatus!, RAW and Shea indicate that this quote originates from “The Epistle to the Paranoids,” which was taken from Thornley’s The Honest Book of Truth… which is not the truth! In Historia Discordia: The Origins of the Discordian Society, The Honest Book of Truth is reproduced in its entirety, as is “The Epistle to the Paranoids,” which were two separate and distinct works.

The first chapter of “Epistle to the Paranoids” originally appeared in Principia Discordia, and the remaining two chapters were discovered in the Discordian Archives, which are reproduced here for your reading pleasure!

Chapter 1 of 'Epistle to the Paranoids' from
page 00069 of the 4th edition of Principia Discordia.

Chapter 2 of 'Epistle to the Paranoids,' page 00001.
Courtesy of the Discordian Archives.

Chapter 2 of 'Epistle to the Paranoids,' page 00002.
Courtesy of the Discordian Archives.

Chapter 3 of 'Epistle to the Paranoids.'
Courtesy of the Discordian Archives.

For further insights into Illuminatus!, you can find the group reading page at RAWIllumination.net.

Posted in discordianism, illuminatus!, kerry thornley, principia discordia, robert anton wilson, robert newport, robert shea, writings | Leave a comment

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April 2015 Eris of the Month: Fnord different by Mister Hikki

April 2015 Eris of the Month, 'Fnord different' by Mister Hikki



Send us your Eris of the Month Club submissions (more info here)
by using the form at the bottom of The MGT. page.

Hail Eris! All Hail Discordia!

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Week 59 of Illuminatus! Group Reading: Semaj the Elder (Part 00002)

On page 622 of Illuminatus!, Hagbard Celine’s Never Whistle While You’re Pissing reminded me of an early-80s letter in the Discordian Archives addressed to Greg Hill and Kerry Thornley courtesy of a Discordian named Semaj the Elder.

Letter to Greg Hill from Semaj the Elder, circa early-80s.
Courtesy of the Discordian Archives.

I really don’t know much about Semaj the Elder (or whatever his real name was) other than he resided in Davenport, Indiana and published a Discordian zine during the early-80s called A.M.O.C.K. of which there were about a half dozen copies discovered in the Discordian Archives.

Scattered copies of Semaj the Elder’s A.M.O.C.K.
(The Ancient & Mystical Order of the Cabal of Kallisti)
also titled Master Monograph for All Discordians.
Courtesy of the Discordian Archives.

For the hell of it I googled Semaj the Elder, which led me to a Google Books page for (of all things!) The Prankster and the Conspiracy and a passage from a letter I’d totally forgotten about that pertains to Semaj the Elder written by Kerry Thornley to Greg Hill in 1982, during a period when Kerry was leading a vagabond existence:

“I will be ambling out to Tampa in the latter half of June, visiting [Elayne Wechsler] in New Jersey, a delightful psych student in Boston named Sean Hugh—maybe Arthur Hlavarty in Durham on the way—Bob McDonald in Virginia—some Oklahoma Libertarian, possibly the SubGenii, certainly Semaj the Elder in Davenport, et al. No telling how long it will take me to reach California, but I’ll try to send you a postcard of advance warning…I’ll probably come back to Tampa at least another year. Paula says that’s okay if I work full time until Christmas, to which I’ve no objection. Next winter after that I’ll probably go to Miami and find work long enough to get my own home until spring. Unless, somewhere along the line, I should find a publisher for one of my books—in which case all plans will be up for rethinking….” The Prankster and the Conspiracy, pages 236 – 237.

Letter from Kerry Thornley to Greg Hill circa 1982.
Courtesy of the Discordian Archives.

In Semaj’s letter to Hill and Thornley, he mentions recent conversations with Bob Shea about a pamphlet project called Never Whistle While Your Pissing Part II, and was writing Greg for permission to quote from Principia Discordia. The letter indicates that Shea and RAW were contemplating at one point actually writing part 1 of Never Whistle While Your Pissing (NWWYP) but never got around to it.

Later, Semaj encourages Thornley to write HBT (The Honest Book of Truth)—assuming that HBT was the same as NWWYP1—a book that was never actually completed except for excerpts that appear in Illuminatus! However, this wasn’t the case—Kerry authored a complete version of The Honest Book of Truth, which yours truly unearthed in the Discordian Archives and that appears in its entirety in Historia Discordia: The Origins of the Discordian Society available while supplies last from your finer internet book retailers.

Semaj also invites Thornley to CHICON, informing Kerry that Elayne (Wechsler) will be attending, as well. Elayne Wechsler—it should be noted—published a memorable zine back in the early days of the zine movement called Inside Joke, which featured stories and articles written by none other than Kerry Thornley and Greg Hill, and artwork by such notables as Ace Backwards and Roldo, the fellow who created the original artwork that appears on the cover of Historia Discordia: The Origins of the Discordian Society available while supplies last from your finer internet book retailers.

Roldo’s Seal of Eris that was adapted for the cover of Historia Discordia: The Origins of the Discordian Society available while supplies last from your finer internet book retailers.

What I find most intriguing about this letter is that Semaj mentions he’s working in cahoots on the NWWYP2 project with Mike Gunderloy, a legendary name in the annals of the Zine Revolution and publisher/editor of the famed Factsheet Five.

If it hadn’t been for Factsheet Five, I probably wouldn’t even be writing these words right now—nor would I have explored many of the arcane avenues that entered my frame of reference during those heady days of the late-80s and early-90s when I was writing for the many zines I discovered in the pages of Factsheet Five. In fact, it was in Factsheet Five that I was first introduced to Kerry Thornley who had a recurring column there called “Conspiracy Corner”.

Copy of Factsheet Five addressed to Kerry Thornley.
Courtesy of the Discordian Archives.

In one way or another, Factsheet Five introduced me to many zines I wrote for and friends I made during this period with ‘zinesters like Greg Bishop, Robert Larson and Peter Stenshoel of The Excluded Middle; Kenn Thomas of Steamshovel Press; Tim Cridland’s Off The Deep End; Wes Nations of Crash Collusion; SMiles Lewis of ELF Infested Spaces; Al Hidell and Joan D’Arc of Paranoia; Johnny Walsh of INFOCULT; Tracy Twyman of Dagobert’s Revenge; Erik Bluhm and Mark Sundeen of The Great God Pan—and I’m probably forgetting a half dozen more so my apologies to any former zinesters out there I’ve failed to mention.

A cavalcade of zines.

Posted in art, book, discordianism, greg hill, illuminatus!, kerry thornley, letters, photo, principia discordia, robert anton wilson, robert shea, writings, zines | 3 Comments

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Barbara Reid: Voodoo Practitioner, Discordian Society Member, and Dealey Plaza Irregular (Part 00001)

Discordian Barbara Reid with noted trumpeter Louis Armstrong.

Early Discordian Barbara Reid was a familiar figure in New Orleans bohemia of the 1960s. Known in the French Quarter as “Mother Witch,” she was an avid voodoo practitioner, claiming to have learned the craft from an Orleanian Creole who was a spiritual descendent of Marie Laveau. According to Reid, she was the only Caucasian to whom this knowledge was passed on.00001

Reid worked as a writer and producer for New Orleans television station WDSU and made occasional appearances on local radio, including a 1970 episode of The American Legion Hour on WTIX-AM called “Witches and Metaphysics.” She frequently appeared in newspaper stories, such as a June 1969 Times-Picayune article about Friday the 13th superstitions in which Reid informed the reporter: “I am not a witch, but I’ll show you what a witch can do if you make me out as a kook.”

June 1969 Times-Picayune article about Friday the 13th with Barbara Reid.

A Times-Picayune story from September 1964 concerned the closing of Kerry Thornley’s favorite French Quarter hang-out, The Bourbon House. To mark the event, a mock funeral procession was staged, which—along with jazz band accompaniment—included Barbara Reid in a coffin “…clad in her usual all-black garb and sporting a black beret and cigarette holder.”

September 1964 Times-Picayune article featuring Barbara Reid in a coffin. Her name is misspelled as Reed.

Known for its rag-tag collection of beatniks, poets and jazz music aficionados, many of the Bourbon House regulars—at the urging of Barbara Reid—began staging informal jazz sessions in the early-60s at Larry Borenstein’s art gallery, an institution that would eventually be renamed—and gain international acclaim—as Preservation Hall, the legendary French Quarter music venue still in operation.

Barbara Reid, with daughter on her lap, at Preservation Hall.
Louisiana Music Magazine, Winter 2012.

Preservation Hall officially opened its doors on June 10th, 1961, an enterprise launched by Reid and her partner in the venture, Kenn Mills. These activities—with Reid at the helm—led to a revival of the traditional jazz scene in New Orleans. However, Reid’s participation in the early days of Preservation Hall has been mostly expunged from the historical records due to a falling out she had with Larry Borenstein, the owner of the venue.

Barbara Reid’s campaign poster.

Reid was instrumental in recording many of the local jazz musicians of the era and—according to her husband, Bill Edmiston—helped integrate the two New Orleans musician unions that had previously segregated blacks and whites.

If all that wasn’t enough, Reid was one of the first members of the New Orleans branch of the Discordian Society, claiming at one time or another to be the reincarnation of Goddess Eris herself! Whatever the case, Reid certainly brought a high degree of chaos into Kerry Thornley’s life during the Jim Garrison investigation period when she placed Kerry in the company of Lee Oswald in September of 1963, a couple of months before JFK’s assassination.

Barbara Reid’s Legion of Dynamic Discord certificate issued by Lord Omar K. Ravenhurst, September 1964.
From the House Select Committee on Assassination files, National Archives.

According to Discordian Society co-founder Greg Hill, Barbara Reid was an aspiring politician, pot dealer and former lover of Jim Garrison:

“When Barbara ran for City Council [in 1964], Garrison was absolutely against it and, she told me, repeatedly warned her to stop playing around where she might get hurt. And that, of course, made her all the more anxious to run. I was going to be her Campaign Secretary, but the draft caught up with me and off I went Ft. Polk. When I returned for a day, 8 weeks later, the election was all over with and she placed #3 out of four (not bad, considering). She was pushing for the black vote, and had some kind of lowdown on corruption with the Fed Housing section of the city. She also had the bohemian vote; her posters depicted a caricature of her, all glasses, beret and cigarette holder. It was during this time that she told me that Garrison was an ex-lover of hers and that his warnings to her were as a friend to a friend (though later I got the impression that he was pretty exasperated with her). Like everything else she told me, I didn’t know if I should believe it or not and so, like everything else she did and said, I just enjoyed the circus and didn’t bother believing or disbelieving. I think she said that the affair was sometime ago before Garrison became prominent. She spoke of him with fondness, though annoyed with his not backing her attempted sojourn into city politics.

“I left before Barbara was busted for pot (curiously enough, I felt that the Quarter was being very uncool narc wise, and predicted a giant bust by October—but nobody took me very seriously. I missed the mark by about a month, I think. Many people got it bad, according to what I heard later.). Anyway, she once spoke of not being too concerned with being busted because she ‘could take care of it.’ At the time I wondered if she meant Garrison, but didn’t press the delicate subject…”00002

April 11, 1964 New Orleans States-Item article on Barbara Reid pot bust.

According to the New Orleans States-Item, Reid was arrested on April 10th, 1966 following a six month investigation when narcotics officers seized a large quantity of marijuana from her apartment. Reid—identified as an “unsuccessful candidate last November for District C”—told officers that she was a “den mother” at the Quorum Club, a bohemian coffee house in the French Quarter where she presided over a gaggle of hippie kids. Evidently, the Quorum Club was at the center of this six month investigation. Curiously, Reid’s arrest record for the pot bust identifies her as a “fugitive from Arizona.” These charges were later dropped.

April 10, 1966 Barbara Reid arrest report.

Perhaps what Reid meant by taking “care of it” was that—because of her inside track to Jim Garrison—she could either blackmail or bribe her way out of the charges. Contrary to popular mythology, Garrison was not immune to this type of corruption. In 1970—following a performance by The Grateful Dead at a New Orleans venue called “The Warehouse”—the band’s hotel rooms were raided by police and several members were arrested on drug charges, an incident recounted in their song “Truckin’” and the line: “Busted down on Bourbon Street…”00003 Afterwards, The Grateful Dead tour manager was able to bribe Garrison to take the bust off the records.00004>

In February 1965, Reid was arrested with members of the Hell’s Angels and charged with “bringing the Hell’s Angels to New Orleans.”00005 A February 25th, 1966 New Orleans States-Item article stated that the charges against Reid (identified as “Barbara Reed” in the arrest report) had been dropped, although the four Hell’s Angels “would be held as possible fugitives…”

February 25th, 1966 Times-Picayune article on Hell's Angels and Barbara Reid.

One of Barbara Reid’s more obscure connections involved the Process Church of the Final Judgment, a counterculture cult that emerged in England during the mid-60s of which many dark legends have been spun over the years, first by Ed Sanders in The Family: The Story of Charles Manson’s Dune Buggy Attack Battalion and later by Maury Terry in The Ultimate Evil.

Ed Sanders claimed that The Process Church had a “baleful influence” on Manson and his minions, while Maury Terry alleged that the group was implicated not only in the Tate-LaBianca murders, but the Son of Sam slayings, as well, and that Process Church leadership oversaw a vast Satanic network dealing in drugs, pornography and ritual murder.

In Love, Sex, Fear, Death: The Inside Story of the Process Church of the Final Judgment, ex-Process member Timothy Wylie paints a more benign portrait, stripping away the conspiratorial legends and revealing a group of sincere searchers ultimately manipulated by their charismatic leader, Mary Ann de Grimston.

In correspondence with this author, Kerry Thornley wrote that he “…first encountered the Process Church in New Orleans in Feb. ’68 when I was there to testify, reluctantly, to the Grand Jury. Barbara Reid, the principal witness against me, and a friend (!) of mine, was said to be ‘up to her ass’ in The Process, which, indeed, maintained a coffee house half a block from Barbara’s apartment. I went over there with Slim (Brooks)… and saw pamphlets about Satan On War and Lucifer on War and Jehovah on War—which I found confusing because I thought Satan and Lucifer were both the same guy, until then, (of course—heh-heh)… A bunch of pale, thin zombies were sitting around in this place. I was telling very funny Garrison stories but nobody was laughing…”

In the next installment we’ll explore Barbara Reid’s involvement with Jim Garrison’s investigation and her role as a Dealey Plaza Irregular.

To read the whole crazy story pick up my book Caught In The Crossfire: Kerry Thornley, Lee Oswald and the Garrison Investigation (Amazon) while supplies last!

Thanks to Tim Cridland for unearthing many of the materials used in this post.

 


00001 “Some Recollections On Barbara Reid” by Greg Hill, 1968. (Greg Hill’s Discordian Archives.)

00002 Ibid.

00003 Lesh, Phil, Searching for the Sound: My Life with the Grateful Dead. Little, Brown and Company, 2005.

00004 Classic Albums: The Grateful Dead – Anthem To Beauty, Isis Productions, 1997.

00005 New Orleans magazine, June 2004.

Posted in art, barbara reid, book, discordianism, greg hill, jfk, jim garrison, kerry thornley, lee harvey oswald, letters, music, photo, warren commission, writings | Leave a comment

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