The First Attention

“[Don Juan] explained that the first attention in man is animal awareness, which has been developed, through the process of experience, into a complex, intricate, and extremely fragile faculty that takes care of the day-to-day world in all its innumerable aspects. In other words, everything that one can think about is part of the first attention.”

~ Don Juan Matus (From Carlos Castaneda’s The Fire From Within)


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“Seeing is to lay bare the core of everything, to witness the unknown, and to glimpse into the unknowable. As such, it doesn’t bring one solace. Seers ordinarily go to pieces on finding out that existence is incomprehensibly complex, and that our normal awareness maligns it with its limitations.”

~ Don Juan Matus (The Fire From Within)



“I’ve explained to you that the new seers aim to be free. And freedom has the most devastating implications. Among them is the implication that warriors must purposely seek change. Your predilection is to live the way you do. You stimulate your reason by running through your inventory and pitting it against your friends’ inventories. Those maneuvers leave you very little time to examine yourself and your fate. You have to give up all that.”

~ Don Juan Matus (The Fire From Within)




“The self-confidence of the warrior is not the self-confidence of the average man. The average man seeks certainty in the eyes of the onlooker, and calls that self-confidence. The warrior seeks impeccability in his own eyes and calls that humbleness. The average man is hooked to his fellow men, while the warrior is hooked only to himself.

“The difference between the two is remarkable… humbleness entails being impeccable in one’s actions and feelings.”

~ Don Juan Matus (Tales of Power)



The Assemblage Point

“… Everything that sorcerers did was done as a consequence of a movement of their assemblage points, and such movements were ruled by the amount of energy that sorcerers had at their command.

“Inside of every human being is a gigantic dark lake of silent knowledge, which each of us can intuit. Sorcerers are the only beings on earth who deliberately go beyond the intuitive level by training themselves to do two transcendental things: first, to conceive of the existence of the assemblage point, and second, to make that point move.

“The most sophisticated knowledge that sorcerers possess, is of our potential as perceiving beings, and the knowledge that the content of perception depends on the position of the assemblage point.”

* * * * *

“Any movement of the assemblage point is like dying. Everything in us gets disconnected, then reconnected again to a source of much greater power. That amplification of energy is felt as a killing anxiety. The outburst of energy will pass. What’s dangerous is not knowing what is happening to you. Once you know, there is no real danger.”

~ Don Juan Matus (The Power of Silence)