That's a statement that makes a lot of people uncomfortable, especially those coming from the left even though much of the best documentation has also come from that persuasion. This is understandable for the nature of some cultic organizations is so shocking to many mainstream individuals that it inevitably leads to a rush to judgement from which equal tragedy results. Case in point, the West Memphis 3, in which three young men were railroaded for three grisly murders in 1993. The thing is -the West Memphis 3 probably was a cultic crime, just not remotely in the way the public was sold.
If anything, the murders and preceding make-believe trial seem to be some variation on the Masonic scapegoating rite. There's the obvious three symbolism -the number of both sets of victims, the boys that were murdered and the teenagers that were framed for the murders. This is probably some kind of play on Jubela, Jubelo, and Jubelum, the three 'unworthy craftsmen' that murdered Hiram Abiff, the chief architect on King Solomon's Temple in Masonic lore. Then there's the location -West Memphis, Arkansas, which is located across the river from the more famous Memphis, Tennessee. Some strands of Masonry see their lineage stretching back to ancient Egypt. Memphis was the city of the Egyptian kings and the fabled repository of the severed head of Osiris. Memphis, Tennessee is in turn closely associated in the American consciousness with two dead kings, Martin Luther King Jr and Elvis Presley. West Memphis would also fall into America's 'Little Egypt' region, always a favorite for Masonic workings. For more on Memphis and 'Little Egypt,' check this posting.
But I digress, if only moderately. For you see, even though this article will focus primarily on Charles Manson, scapegoating will be a reoccurring theme throughout our dissection of cultic crimes. Cults as criminal enterprises have become increasingly popular amongst the Cryptocracy in no small part because they're so easy to demonize and invoke fear in the minds of the public. I have already delved into this process concerning some of the Mexican gangs with strong cultic overtones here, here and here; as well as Manson contemporaries the Brotherhood of Eternal Love in this article as well as these two YouTube videos, which can be viewed here and here.
So, on to Charlie and the Family. The conventional view is that Charlie and company were a cabal of acid-fried, impoverished hippies attempting to start a race war between blacks and whites that would fulfill the deranged fantasies of their charismatic leader. Or so one of Manson's prosecutors, Vincent Bugliosi, would have us believe even though the above statement alone is ripe with contradictions. And those are hardly the only ones. Lets just consider a few more...
For starters, anyone who has read a decent amount of literature on the Manson crimes is inevitably left to wonder why Charlie wasn't busted well before his crime spree escalated to murder. Local law enforcement officers had ample reasons to bust Manson at any given time during the 1967-1969 period in which he was last out of prison. Preston Guillory, a former deputy sheriff in Los Angeles, stated:
"A few weeks prior to the Spahn Ranch raid, we were told that we weren't to arrest Manson or any of his followers. We had a sheaf of memos on Manson -that they had automatic weapons at the ranch, that the citizens had complained about hearing machine gun fire at night, that firemen from the local fire station had been accosted by armed members of Manson's band and told to get out of the area. Deputies started asking, 'Why aren't we gonna make the raid soon?' I mean, Manson's a parole violator, we know there's narcotics and booze. He's living at the ranch with a bunch of minor girls in complete violation of his parole. Deputies at the station quite frankly became very annoyed that no action was being taken against Manson...
"...You have to remember that Charlie was on federal parole all this time from '67 to '69. Do you realize all the shit he was getting away with while he was on parole? Now here's the kicker. Before the Tate killings he had been arrested at Malibu twice for statutory rape. Never got (imprisoned for parole violation). Manson liked to ball young girls, so he did his thing and he was released, and they didn't put any parole on him. But somebody very high up was controlling everything that was going on and was seeing to it that we didn't bust Manson."
(The Shadow Over Santa Susana, Adam Gorightly, pg. 148)
In addition to being underage, many of the girls living at the Spahn and Barker Ranches with Manson during this time were also runaways. By late '69 the Family had also become semi-major drug dealers in the LA market and were routinely associating with biker gangs and ex-cons. Surely there was ample indications that the Manson Family was headed down a dark path to the point that the police's inaction is total inexplicable without hindrance from above.
To further muddy the waters, there's the fact that Charlie became a darling of the LA entertainment scene around this time with multiple high profile contacts in both music and film. David McGowan notes:
"He made numerous contacts in the music business, including Dennis Wilson, Neil Young and Terry Melcher -the son of Doris Day, and the former occupant, along with Candace Bergen, of the Cielo Drive home where the Tate murders occurred. Charlie even reportedly served as a 'religious consultant' for Universal Studios on a movie about Christ, and also auditioned to be one of 'The Monkeys.' "
(Programmed to Kill, pg. 138)
Neil Young once quipped that "A lot of pretty well known musicians around L.A. knew him, though they'd probably deny it now." For a short time Charlie even managed to rope in Deirdre Lansbury, renamed 'DiDi' by the Family, and daughter to actress Angela Lansbury of Murder, She Wrote fame. Bizarrely Mrs. Lansbury had just played the mother and handler of a programmed assassin in John Frankenheimer's legendary The Manchurian Candidate a few years earlier. Experiencing a play on this in real life must have been quite a jolt. Further, DiDi's background is not as unusual amongst Manson family members as mainstream accounts would have you believe. Many members came from middle to upper-middle class backgrounds and in some cases were quite well educated before meeting Charlie, such as Lynette Fromme, who was the daughter of an aerospace engineer that had been stationed at Randolph Air Force Base during the war.
Then there's one of the great contradictions, namely Charlie's legendary abilities of mind control for which he would eventually be convicted of. Continuing with McGowan:
"Perhaps in no other serial killer case has the subject of mind control played a more central role. That Charlie had a remarkable ability to control his followers is a well-established and widely acknowledged fact. Even more remarkable is that Manson has maintained much of that control from inside a prison cell for over thirty years now. In fact, the control that he had over disciples was the primary basis for Manson's murder conviction. While it was Charlie's face that came to symbolize the killings, he did not personally participate in the Tate/LaBianca murders. According to the official version of events, he was not even present at the crime scenes when the murders took place; he merely suggested to his followers what they should do, and they obligingly followed his commands. In order to convict Manson then, it was necessary for the prosecution to convince the jury that the actual killers were virtually powerless to disobey their leaders. For this reason, the Manson trial had no real precedent in American legal history. What the Manson case demonstrated was that it could be proven in a court of law that a person could be compelled to essentially act against his/her will."
(Programmed to Kill, pg. 144)
This is a remarkable statement. The DoD and intelligence community has claimed for years that it is totally impossible to program a human being to kill another, yet in what was arguably the highest profile murder trial in 20th century America Charles Manson was convicted of such an act. Manson himself best summed it up when he stated "I was convicted of witchcraft in the Twentieth Century." This statement is far more apt that many readers may yet realize. Continuing with McGowan:
"Another question never addressed by Bugliosi is how it was possible that a man of limited education, who had spent the majority of his life behind bars, somehow acquired those skills while U.S. intelligence agencies, after investing countless millions of dollars in decades of research aimed at attaining that very same goal, have allegedly met with nothing but failure. It defies explanation that men such as Manson -or Jim Jones, David Koresh, et al -have stumbled upon a secret that the CIA has yet to discover. It is patently absurd notion, and yet that is exactly what we are supposed to believe. We are also supposed to believe that Charlie, while controlling the actions of others, wad himself acting on his own free will. That is highly unlikely."
(Programmed to Kill, pg. 145)
The Esalen Institution is a metaphysical 'human potential' center based out of Big Sur noted for its mineral baths and rotating staff of noted philosophers, artists, psychologists and gurus. It has also attracted any number of fringe elements and potential intelligence assets over the years. Manson was one of the first, who made his way there on August 3rd, 1969, mere days before the Tate killings. Ed Sanders notes:
"Manson had brought his guitar to the Esalen Institute, and later, during his murder trial, told one of the defense attorneys he had been 'rejected' in some way at the Institute. The Esalene had been 'rejected' in some way at the Institute. The Esalen Institute had been founded back in 1962 on the grounds of the old Big Sur Hot Springs, well known to readers of Henry Miller and Jack Kerouac. By 1968 and 1969 it had become popular among middle-class seekers for its seminars and encounter sessions, and feature articles had been written on Esalen in Life and the New York Times Sunday magazine section. Abigail Folger had attended seminars at Esalen, and someone at the house on Cielo Drive had phoned Esalen on the afternoon of July 30, 1969. There was never any indication that anyone from the house of Sharon Tate was at Esalen the weekend that Manson was there."
(The Family, pg. 191)
The 'house on Cielo Drive' is where the Tate murders occurred while Abigail Folger, a member of the coffee dynasty, was one of the victims at that site, for those unaware. Further, there was much more going on at the Esalen Institute than Sanders lets on. Adam Gorightly goes a few steps further, stating:
"... Folger attended Esalen Institute seminars. Process founder Robert DeGrimston lectured at Esalen, and Manson made at least one appearance there, crooning groovy tunes with his guitar to a less than receptive audience... Esalen -like many another human potential center -was co-opted by the intelligence community, to one degree or another, just as Stanford and other universities -funded by the CIA -were using street shamans and anybody else they could get their hands on for experimental purposes, dispensing to them LSD and other drugs under clinical conditions at their research facilities.
"At such human potential centers as Esalen, group 'dissonance' or stress was introduced to destroy an individual's previous beliefs, and to replace the destroyed personality with a new-group oriented personality. These so called 'group encounters' and 'sensitivity programs' were used in much the same way that Manson programmed his flock, systematically breaking down an individual's personality to be reconstructed along the lines of the group-mind. The enigmatic Ronald Stark -big-time LSD entrepreneur and possible MK-ULTRA operative -was an Esalen financial supporter. Keep in mind that many people involved in the human potential movement -who were often bankrolled by CIA front organizations like the Human Ecology Fund -brought good intentions into their endeavors, although there can be no argument that the intelligence community were using the likes of Tim Leary and others of his ilk as test subjects in behavior modification experiments."
(The Shadow Over Santa Susana, pg. 164)
This puts the Esalen Institute in contact with three of the more notorious cults of the late 60s, one obviously being Manson. Another would be the Process Church of Final Judgement, an off-shoot of Scientology, of which Robert DeGrimston was the co-founder of. For the sake of brevity I will not go into the Process Church to much, but will state that they've had links to numerous serial killers over the years, that also included Son of Sam in addition to Manson. Researchers such as Ed Sanders in the original version of The Family and Maury Terry in The Ultimate Evil have speculated that the Process controlled a national crime syndicate that included drug trafficking, kidnapping, and smut films. Others see them as a giant red herring. Either way, Process members rubbed shoulders with their fair share of notorious figures in the 60s and 70s.
The other late 60s cultic group I was referring to in association with Esalen was the Brotherhood of Eternal Love. Timothy Leary, who lectured at Esalen for a time, was their resident guru and was eventually sprung from prison with the Brotherhood's aid. Then there's Ronald Stark, who became the Brotherhood's chief financial backer on his way to becoming one of the largest drug dealers in the world. Then in 1980 he was arrested in Italy, then released by a judge who ruled that he had been under the employment of 'the American secret services' since at least 1960. As previously noted, much more information is available on Stark and the Brotherhood in this article and these two YouTube videos available here and here.
This would hardly be the Esalen Institute's last run-in with convicted murderers, intelligence assets and the bizarre. For instance, it became involved with the phenomenon of 'the Nine' in 1970s. 'The Nine', of which I've written a great length here, were extraterrestrial beings claiming to be the gods of ancient Egypt channelled by a series of individuals such as Andrija Puharich with close ties to the intelligence community. Through Esalen this clique would find itself involved in nothing less than the fall of the Soviet Union, apparently:
"...the Nine, channelled by Jenny O'Connor, were listed as members of staff. According to Einhorn, 'she took over running Esalen through the Nine', and such was the influence of the Nine that they ordered the sacking of its chief financial officer and reorganized the entire management structure. In the late 1970s the Esalen Soviet Exchange program was developed, initially to share parapsychological research, in which rising Soviet stars of academia and politics were invited to the United States. This was to have enormous, far-reaching influence on world politics, as many of the Soviets who went to Esalen in the 1980s were to become instrumental in the shake-up that would end the Cold War and bring about the fall of communism. It is reasonable to assume that an organization whose members made regular trips to Moscow in the days of the Cold War must have been made use of by US intelligence, or at least been monitored. Almost incredibly, several Soviet officials who would later rise to high office in the Gorbachev regime attended Jenny O'Connor's Nine seminars, together with psi enthusiasts Congressman Charlie Rose and Ira Einhorn."
(The Stargate Conspiracy, Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince, pg. 234)
Clearly this place is some kind of master indoctrination center regardless of whether its being directed by the CIA and/or the Nine. Regardless, its links to the Manson Family, the Process, the Brotherhood of Eternal Love, the Nine, the intelligence community, and such have made it a major influence on the zeitgeist of the times for the past several decades.
More to come in the next installment.