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BirthtoEaglerock

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JEDC's Spiritual Autobio Part 1


Ancestry; birth; to Oakland years


by James Edward David Cline


ANCESTRY: MY PARENTS


My Father


My father was the only son of a man who had built the first concrete bridges in those parts, who then became a farmer, where Dad grew up. His mother -- my Grandmother -- was of the Rush family... there was a Dr. Rush who was a good friend of Benjamin Franklin, and signed the Declaration of Independance. Intuitive and analytical-minded, Dad had hard years on the farm, then had a nice car, worked slinging hot steel billets in a steel mill, then started work for the federal government at an agricultural experimental station, where he met my Mother.


My Mother


My mother was eldest of a large family, her father had the first electrical store in town, involved in early oil fielding, worked for the railroad; they divoriced... there was much animosity of mother and her sisters against men. Among the sisters, only my mother stayed married, as my father would not leave regardless of the unearned punishment.


Bridges and girls


The story went that my father had said that if the child was a girl, he would put it in a sack and drop it off the bridge into the river like a batch of unwanted kittens; and that if it was twin girls, he would jump off the bridge with the sack of them. This is a piece of the jigsaw puzzle that still doesn't fit well with the rest yet, but it does illustrate that it was very important to my father that his only child be a male. Probably that was because otherwise this would have been the end of the Cline lineage, at least of the name.


Birth Wait, I'm Not Ready Yet


I was delivered prematurely in a time when premies rarely survived. My mother, normally in charge ofeverything, was not in charge of the gender of her child appearantly so eager to leave. She froze during delivery, resulting in a squashed baby.


Nurse's Epitaph for My Life


"He won't make it, but we will try" proclaimed one nurse to the other, looking at the premie which had been hand squished back into normal shape after the crushing delivery. Thus unwittingly she cast this spell into the aura of the tiny being that was me, at a very formative stage in life. This affirmation was now programmed into my creative self, ever active whenever life events gathered things which could fit into the program, so that it could be played out. Over and over again, like computer programs do, until modified. Even into middle age, I instinctively expected woman to come to me and try, so that I might have a chance to make it. When no woman was there with me to "try", all I could do is helplessly await, like I did on that cold hard pad under the glaring light original birthday's helpless awaiting nurse's attentions.


--- Even someone just talking about me into my aura, valid or invalid, puts a program into my life that constantly seeks to play itself out in my experience, whenever it can.


INFANCY


Circumcision: Another Early Ouch Pattern


--A somewhat delayed circumcision renewed the traumatization of this life.


No Milk


My mother was unable to nurse me, but since the recommendation was that I be nursed, I almost starved. Mother did not understand what was happening. Eventually an artificial milk substitute was given me, and I regained weight and some contentment.


Teenage Girl's Snuggle Pattern


But my parents dearly cared for me, given they both had careers. I was farmed out a lot to one of Mother's younger sisters who snuggled and cood and hugged me a lot, imprinting me with the pattern that a trim young woman was the most wonderful of creatures, of infinite desireability for companionship.


Silver Spoon Even Though Poor


Later I had a high chair and a silver spoon with a loop handle, even in the relatively poor family. But I eagerly awaited the time when I could sit in a real chair at the table and eat with real silverware like real people (adults).


CHILDHOOD


This Workshop Day's Experience


The instruction was to recall one's room where one grew up in childhood, and describe significant event there, in a colored pencil drawing.


My random grasp netted me the black colored pencil, as the box was shared amongs the other workshop attendees. Perhaps this black color triggered the site of the initial part of my drawing: a coal bin.


My drawing initially showed the first rrom I felt was mine, although did not get there until I was 16 to 18 yrs old, beyond childhood. However, drawing it did lead to a sketch of a childhood room that was indeed very archetypically formative in my life.


From this drawing I initially wrote:


The need to symbolically place my mark on my special art of the shared livingspace manifested at age 4-6 once when a girlfriend of same age & I got colored crayons and marked the rooms wall as we walked around the perimeter. this was great fun as we went up and over furniture in my room - ended disastrously when my father discovered what she and I were doing with wax crayons on the wall. Long it took to clean those walls of the wax colors.


This need to place the symbols of my joys upon my walls re-manifestd in later years, age 16-18, though only longing for a girl friendto share with then - by myself I made a room with cardboard walls, and upon them I carefully wrote the equations from books of the sciences, whether I understood them or not. They were a spiritual representation of that which I hoped would bring purpose and wonder and fulfillment in adulthood coming up.


The sense of symbolism and color, which I placed in the perimeters of my space, is the spiritual aspect, a higher energy of meaningful "art" to somehow bring wonders to what was to come, to manifest ... and the sense of such fun shared with a girlfriend showed both newness to this symbolic endeavor, along with the realization she also brought anger from the powers-that-be.


Subsequent reltionships with women continued that pattern in many ways."


Many thoghts have occured to me as triggered /evoked by this drawing and process, since that initial day's workshop.


One is that the girl who was involved in that event with me was Judy Heller, child of friends of my parents. Judy reappeared once in my life later: I went toWashington DC in 1959, dropping out of college to go find me a wife. After 3 months without a date, I quit my job there (working as a museum technician for the Smithsonian Institution) to return to the west; but before I went,my parents arranged to have the Hellers to pick me up (I had no car there) for a parting visit. To my suprise, Judy was there, a beautiful young woman (probably spiritually she had called to me to come to the Washington DC area originally), but now she was engaged to marry soon. She had a task for she and I to share then: we sanded old paint off her chest of drawers, she was getting ready to repaint it for the marriage. That was the last I saw of her... and Deep inside I then knew she was the woman I had sought all those years... and she was gone - to me - now. She married an insurance man, appearantly lived happilly ever after, as far as I know.


The patterns emerging from this were:


1. I need a worldly-wise female peer friend to bring new fun into my life. I was unable to do that for myself for several reasons.


2. Symbols I inscribe onto the perimeters of my livingspace, symbols of the operational functions of God, provide a transition into newness for me.


3. Girl friend provides the brightness of life to me, yet also brings trouble with the authorities.


KINDRGARDEN AND GRADE SCHOOL


Alphabet Blocks: building up and down


The alphabet blocks in kindergarden were wonderous things. Cubes of wood with strange patterns inscribed on every side, they stacked into a tower so high, assisted by afriendly girl helping me. Higher and higher the tower built, all inscribed with tose interesting alphabet pictures. But suddenly there were no more blocks with which to build. They were all gone. All in the tower so wonderful. But now the fun was past, the fun of building the tower was no more, I felt sad. Suddenly from across the room a strange child ran, and deliberately crashed in to my wondrous tower, sending its components crashing down everywhere! I felt angry, how could he do such an awful thing to me? Feeling my anger, my eyes happened to notice that there were alphabet blocks on the floor again, blocks that could be used to build with! The problem was solved, she and I could now build again. And thus I learned the principle that the fun of building up, needed to be modified to involve the tearing down at times.


Group Play: I Become an Outcast: Basic Continuing Pattern


"Rover, Red Rover" was the name ofthe game we were to play. I found myself being part of a group of kids who were going to play, and the two team captains alternately picked someone from the bunch of kids until all were sided up with one or the other of the team captains. I was the last one, and the team captain whose turn was up, looked at me uneasily as I went to that side. We formed two parallel lines. Soon the game became somewhat appearant: A team captain would call out "Rover, red rover, come over", then identify one of the opponent team members, who would then leave that line and run toward the other line, running into the line of linked kids. If the runner succeeded in breaking through the line, he/she would get to return to his/her home team, taking with them a member of the opponent team. But if the breakthrough was unsuccessful, the kid got absorbed by the line he/she had attempted to penetrate. My name was called, and I let loose of my team and ran toward the opponent team's line until I bumped into them somewhat uncertainly. No penetration, so I got absorbed into that line. But now they saw me as a weak link, and from then on every time the other team ran towards this line, it was at me. I did not know how to hold on to the others, either, so breakthru happened each time. When the game was over, I was never asked to play with them again. Somehow I lacked some basic ability to function in team sports, and that lack echoed ever after in my life, in most of my group activities, although in time I did get a little better at it.


COMIC BOOKS


Comic books had those alphabetic circled things leading from the actors on the pages. I couldn't wait to learn to read in school: I had to find out what those words meant, so I set up endless questions: what is that word? And the next word? The word "mosquito" was my triumph when I mastered it. Action pictures with writing brought adventurism into my consciousness, far better than the dullness of my ongoing physical life.


I had rolled the snow ball all the way home from school, into a huge ball by the time it was rolled into my front yard. Dad had completed the snow man, and I was looking out the window admiring the creation when some boy I did not know came over and demolished my snowman, as I watched helplessly. No way to rebuild this time, I learned that strangers could and would sometimes destroy my things deliberately without provocation, inexplicably.


MAKING MY MARK


The need to symbolically place my mark on my special art of the shared livingspace manifested at age 4-6 once when a girlfriend of same age & I got colored crayons and marked the rooms wall as we walked around the perimeter. this was great fun as we went up and over furniture in my room - ended disastrously when my father discovered what she and I were doing with wax crayons on the wall. Long it took to clean those walls of the wax colors.


This need to place the symbols of my joys upon my walls re-manifestd in later years, age 16-18, though only longing for a girl friendto share with then - by myself I made a room with cardboard walls, and upon them I carefully wrote the equations from books of the sciences, whether I understood them or not. They were a spiritual representation of that which I hoped would bring purpose and wonder and fulfillment in adulthood coming up.


Spiritual Aspect: Sense of Symbolism and Color


The sense of symbolism and color, which I placed in the perimeters of my space, is the spiritual aspect, a higher energy of meaningful "art" to somehow bring wonders to what was to come, to manifest ... and the sense of such fun shared with a girlfriend showed both newness to this symbolic endeavor, along with the realization she also brought anger from the powers-that-be. Subsequent relationships with women continued that pattern in many ways."


PET RABBIT


I had a pet white rabbit. One time, Sweetheart escaped from the yard, but was found in the neighborhood, alive. I got the name from "sweetheart soap."


Hard to Breathe Sometimes


Sometimes when I moved too fast and too long, it was hard to breathe. My mother had this athsma too. The doctor said my father must move our family to healthier climates. Sweetheart rabbit was left in the care of a great aunt who had a farm. So began our nomadic life, through which I went to 16 schools. Thus started the pattern of being frequently totally uprooted, powerlessly.


Lizards


I was good at catching the lizards on the wooden fenceposts which separated the school playground from the surrounding desert. It was not easy to get the lizards to eat insects provided for them, so eventually I had to take them back and turn them loose. The lizards liked to have their foreheads stroked downward toward their nose.


POCKET KNIFE


Too sick from reaction from the vaccination to move, I lay on the couch watching a scorpion running along the floor directly at me, tail up in the attack stinging position. Then my father suddenly appeared, penknife opened in hand, and pinned the scorpion to the floor before it reached me. I learned it was important to have a pocket knife at hand at all times.


MY INSECT COLLECTION


I had an insect collection, including that scorpion, pinned in a flat box. Several scorpions, black widow spiders, colorful insects of great variety and color. The last was a moth, whose larva hatched and ate the collection while the box was put away, and so when I opened the box later, there was nothing left but pieces of larva. Even insects could and would destroy my handiwork.


DESERT EXPLORATION:


My parents and I would explore the desert together often. I had a BB rifle which invited my skill at aiming at bottles and tin cans found along the way. My father found a fallen saguaro cactus' skeleton, and sawed a section of it off, took it home, and made a lamp of it. That lamp still presides over my bedplace now.


BEAUTIFUL OCEAN


All the way to the ocean I could not wait to play in the vast water of which I had been told. At last I scampered out of the car at Laguna Beach toward the beautiful ocean, putting the desert behind me. I reached the water and was out in it but cold! Icewater! Crashing icy wave all over me! I scampered out of the unwelcoming ocean and went to accept the dryer, but warmer regular world.


RICE CRISPIES


My favorite breakfast at the endless string of restaurants we ate in, was Rice Crispies in a tiny box that opened up its side and had milk directly poured into the box. A small glass of ornage juice completed the meal.


FLOATING WORLD OF METAL


We rode out on the LST in the bay to a warship to visit my cousin who was on it. Climbing up the stairs from the LST up onto the deck of the great grey boat, found a new kind of world, made of steel of endless variety of shapes. My cousin Bill lived there, it was said. This was a new kind of home, which was not attached to the land, and could move elsewhere.


PRISONERS


For several days, great booms could be heard erratically. I was told there was a battle going on at an island called Alcatraz out in the bay, where prisoners were kept. Even prisoners could fight back, the helpless could keep trying.


BUMPED INTO


I was lying on the school playground's asphalt, with my broken new glasses. I remembered a much bigger boy running at me, ran right into me, and here I was. Another pair of expensive broken glasses for my poor parents to replace. And something was different about my world, or about me, as I picked myself up. But my eyes were not damaged by the broken glass, luckily again.


SAVING GUPPIES


We had a house trailer now to live in, our very own place, and we were towing it down the coast highway a long time. We pulled off the road once to rest, and opening the door, found that my aquarium had just overturned, my fish were all over the floor, out of water. I picked them up and put them back into the uprighted aquarium, fearing the worst. But they lived on, and my favorite guppy "Oscar" with the chinese-ish insignia on his sides lived on to produce many more like him, which I later gave to my friends. So sometimes the world could be restored from appearant disaster if one gave it the chance, and life could go on.


POST OFFICE


We lived in our housetrailer, parked beside a house in Eagle Rock, on Figeroa Boulevard. There were some neighbor girls who taught me an interesting game, called post office, in which the girls would lick the stamp (my face) then stamp on my foot. Contact with friendly girls could be interesting in some gender-related way. The pattern of the exciting kiss, followed by the unexpected abuse, from girls was set.


Copyright C 1995 James Edward David Cline


An Excalator Hi page titled BirthtoEaglerock by J E D Cline started on Saturday, April 26, 2008 8:59:30 PM US/Pacific


Copyright © 2008 James E. D. Cline. Permission granted to reproduce providing inclusion of a link back to this site and acknowledgment of the author and concept designer James E. D. Cline.