Friday, December 24, 2010

Gift of a Generous Heart

Many thanks to Rob Breszny for sharing the extraordinary accom-
plishment and generosity that is his friend, the publisher and author Richard Grossinger's compilation entitled "My Teachers." All of us can certainly name a goodly number of very significant teachers and guides along our way, but more than 70? Indeed, Richard acknowledges, count 'em, 71 teachers great and small by the writing's end. The number alone is "wow" to me, let alone the reading of this remarkable document. Not only did he name them, but he named as well his relationship to the them, when, where and how they met, and what it was that he learned from them. I find it a great work of a beautiful heart, penned by a lover of words, and it inspires me immensely. I shall soon put my heart and mind and pen to the precious task of creating such a work of my own. In fact, according to Breszny, there is no better time than 2011 for we Librans to do so.
So watch this column for a future entry of this nature. And in the meantime, feast your eyes on Richard's. May its radiant love and magnanimous generosity warm and inspire your heart as it did mine.

My Teachers
by Richard Grossinger

Over a lifetime one has many teachers but only a small number who teach them something essential that transforms. Some of the lessons are big, some tiny, and some are absolutely huge, huger than the life itself. All these lessons, big and small, play a role.

You know who your teachers are. These are mine, along with when (and/or how) I met them and the simple version of what they taught me:

Martha Rothkrug (Towers), my mother. I met her at my conception in February, 1944, if not earlier. What she taught me was: pure terror—and, by terror: magic, ancient clan magic in its primal form, plus the profound sorrow and exile of earthly existence. By showing me the abyss, cruelly before I was ready, she gave me the tools and intimation of revelation. She conferred on me an alienation so engulfing that I could never escape it in a lifetime. She was my dark shaman.

Robert Towers (nee Turetsky), my stepfather, the adman, some time in 1946 when he moved in with my mother. He taught me raw elegant language, baseball rudiments and moves, his own rabbinical apostasy, and the entire social world around me. He was a gentleman and a nice guy who acted like a tyrant because he thought that was his role. Dandy and poseur that he was, he was still my first intellectual companion.

Jonathan Towers, my half-brother, April, 1948. He taught me the battle, the war, defiance, the ferocity of our family legacy, and, ultimately from that heritage, compassion, because I had to learn how to feel it for him. He taught me that we were twin initiates in a dark lodge, children of a witch. He took his own life in May, 2005.

Philip Wohlstetter, my first friend, at P.S. 6 and Bill-Dave Group, the Borough of Manhattan, 1951. He taught me sacred mischief and secular mystery; he invented the intellect for both of us. He initiated me in the Hardy Boys, Ken Holt, Rick Blaine. We rediscovered our dialogue half a century later, and then he taught me the esoteric logos of international politics and rogue governments.

Abraham Fabian, Greenwich Village, my first psychiatrist, November, 1952. He woke me up and taught me that I existed. He held up the first mirror...

To read the remaining 66 entries, click here.


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