Carlos Castaneda – two versions

on Wikipedia

Carlos Castañeda (December 25, 1925 – April 27, 1998) was an American writer. Starting with The Teachings of Don Juan in 1968, Castaneda wrote a series of books that purport to describe training in shamanism that he received under the tutelage of a Yaqui “Man of Knowledge” named don Juan Matus.

Castaneda’s first three books—The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge, A Separate Reality, and Journey to Ixtlan—were written while he was an anthropology student at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). He wrote that these books were ethnographic accounts describing his apprenticeship with a traditional “Man of Knowledge” identified as don Juan Matus, allegedly a Yaqui Indian from northern Mexico. The veracity of these books was doubted from their original publication, and they are now widely considered to be fictional. Castaneda was awarded his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees based on the work described in these books.

Early life

according to his birth record, Carlos Castañeda was born Carlos César Salvador Arana, on December 25, 1925, in Cajamarca, Peru, son of César Arana and Susana Castañeda, both of them single. Later Castaneda would say he was born in São Paulo, Brazil in 1931 and that Castaneda was a surname he adopted later. Immigration records confirm the birth record’s date and place of birth. Castaneda moved to the United States in the early 1950s and became a naturalized citizen on June 21, 1957.

Castaneda married Margaret Runyan in Mexico in 1960, according to Runyan’s memoirs. Castaneda is listed as the father on the birth certificate of Runyan’s son C.J. Castaneda even though the biological father was a different man.

In an interview Margaret said they were married from 1960 to 1973, however Castaneda obscured whether their marriage even happened, and his death certificate even stated he had never been married.

Career

Castaneda’s first three books—The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge, A Separate Reality, and Journey to Ixtlan—were written while he was an anthropology student at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). He wrote that these books were ethnographic accounts describing his apprenticeship with a traditional “Man of Knowledge” identified as don Juan Matus, allegedly a Yaqui Indian from northern Mexico. The veracity of these books was doubted from their original publication, and they are now widely considered to be fictional. Castaneda was awarded his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees based on the work described in these books.

In 1974 his fourth book, Tales of Power, was published and chronicled the end of his apprenticeship under the tutelage of Matus. Castaneda continued to be popular with the reading public with subsequent publications that unfolded further aspects of his training with don Juan.

Castaneda wrote that don Juan recognized him as the new nagual, or leader of a party of seers of his lineage. Matus also used the term nagual to signify that part of perception which is in the realm of the unknown yet still reachable by man, implying that, for his own party of seers, Matus was a connection to that unknown. Castaneda often referred to this unknown realm as “nonordinary reality.”

While Castaneda was a well-known cultural figure, he rarely appeared in public forums. He was the subject of a cover article in the March 5, 1973 issue of Time which described him as “an enigma wrapped in a mystery wrapped in a tortilla”. There was controversy when it was revealed that Castaneda may have used a surrogate for his cover portrait. Correspondent Sandra Burton, apparently unaware of Castaneda’s principle of freedom from personal history, confronted him about discrepancies in his account of his life. Castaneda responded: “To ask me to verify my life by giving you my statistics … is like using science to validate sorcery.” Following that interview, Castaneda completely retired from public view.

Death

Castaneda died on April 27, 1998 in Los Angeles due to complications from hepatocellular cancer. There was no public service; Castaneda was cremated and the ashes were sent to Mexico. His death was unknown to the outside world until nearly two months later, on 19 June 1998, when an obituary entitled “A Hushed Death for Mystic Author Carlos Castaneda” by staff writer J. R. Moehringer appeared in the Los Angeles Times.

Four months after Castaneda’s death, C. J. Castaneda, also known as Adrian Vashon, whose birth certificate shows Carlos Castaneda as his father, challenged the authenticity of Castaneda’s will in probate court. The challenge was ultimately unsuccessful. Carlos’ death certificate states metabolic encephalopathy for 72 hours prior to his death, yet the will was purportedly signed 48 hours before Castaneda’s death.

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From Castaneda.com

Tensegrity® was developed by American author, anthropologist and shaman, Carlos Castaneda and his cohorts, Carol Tiggs, Taisha Abelar and Florinda Donner-Grau.

Castaneda, starting with The Teachings of Don Juan, wrote a series of books that describe his training with his shaman-teacher, don Juan Matus, who taught him everything he knew about energy, how to cultivate it within ourselves and then use it in our everyday lives.

Those 12 books have sold more than 28 million copies in 17 languages and have become the source for helping millions of people manifest the life of their dreams, by bringing the once closely held knowledge and wisdom of the Toltec shamans to anyone who desires an extraordinary life.