John Lash (b. 1945, New York City) has been called the true successor of Mircea Eliade
and the rightful heir of Joseph Campbell. Unlike those two world-class academics,
John is a self-educated free-lance scholar who combines studies and
experimental mysticism to teach directive mythology: that is, the application of myth to life, rather than its mere interpretation. He is a
leading exponent of the power of myth to direct individual experience and drive historical events over the long term. An expert on sidereal mythology, naked-eye astronomy, precession, and the World Ages, he also teaches the critique of belief-systems. On metahistory.org, he presents a radical revision of Gnosticism, with original commentaries on the Nag Hammadi codices. He also presents the only complete restoration by any scholar of the Sophianic myth of the Pagan Mysteries, the sacred story of Gaia-Sophia, recounting the origin of the earth and the human species from the galactic core.
In the unknown dolmen,
Punta de Gracia, Andalucia, Spain
[Not to be confused with John Lash b. 1948, known as a teacher of Tai Chi. JLL did not write The Tai Chi Journey etc.].
John's father died two months before he was born: son of a widow. His childhood was spent in the idyllic fishing village of Friendship, Maine where he lived with his mother, step-father, and half-sister from the age of three until 17. He graduated from Waldoboro High School in June 1963 as valedictorian. During high school, he showed genius in mathematical studies and ranked in the 99.9 percentile on the national scale of student achievement. Upon graduating, he briefly attended the University of Maine in Orono, where he met professor C. F. Terrell, a world-class Ezra Pound scholar, who became his mentor and a life-long friend. He was attending historty class UM Orono when Kennedy was assassinated in November 1963.
Expelled from college for failure to attend classes, John left the USA and travelled for three years around the world, visiting 30 countries and living for a while in Japan. He recounts his spontaneous mystical experiences in India, Nepal, and Cambodia (first encounter with the Organic Light) in Severed Rose.
Upon returning from his travels in 1966, John met Jan Michele Kerouac, the daughter of Beat Generation icon Jack Kerouac. Living at Yelapa (Puerto Vallarta) in Mexico, they wrote a novel together ("The Influence") about the Sixties and LSD. They were married for four years and remained close friends for 29 years. In 1987 John began a friendship lasting 22 years with Joanna Harcourt-Smith, the ex-wife of counterculture guru and psychonautic celebrity of the Sixties, Timothy Leary. Oddly, both Jan Kerouac and Timothy Leary died within a week of each other in 1996.
In 2001 John brought metahistory.org to the internet. In that same year he returned to his adolescent passion for films. In 2002 he completed his first screenplay, SABINA, based on the life of Sabina Spielrein, the first mistress of C.G. Jung. In 2010 he co-authored DR SAX, based on the novel by Jack Kerouac. Due to inheritence through Jan, John owns rights to a number of her father's literary properties, including Dr Sax and On the Road.
Currently John is working on two screenplays: AMERICAN GRAIL, an adaptation of the legend of Parzival to a "cowboy 'n injun" adventure set in the 1880s in the Wild West, and LYDIA'S VOW, an account of the diaspora of the Mysteries.
John accepts solid professional proposals for submission of his screenplays, both completed and in progress, with the goal of optioning. These properties and titles are registered for protection with the Writer's Guild of Amerca.
His published works to 2006 are: The Seeker's Handbook (1991) , Twins and the Double (1993), The Hero - Manhood and Power (1995), Quest for the Zodiac (1999), Not in His Image (2006)
From 1998 through 2009 John was associated with the Marion Institute in Marion, Massachusetts, initial sponsors of the website metahistory.org. In November 2001 he spoke on Gnosticism with Elaine Pagels (The Gnostic Gospels) at a conference in Marion. Subsequently, he developed Gnostic material, the recovery of the Mysteries, and the Sophianic way of life extensively on metahistory.org, which he calls a teaching site. He was the first person to introduce the tern "archon" (drawn from Gnostic writings) to public discussion on the Internet.
In 2004 John designed, wrote, and launched the site futureprimitive.org and arranged with the Marion Institute to engage Joanna Harcourt-Smith as host and admin. Originally, the site was conceived to serve as a networking facility for alternative ("emergent") communities around the world, and to support the oral tradisions of poetry and storytelling.
Original template for futureprimitive.org, created in Gaucin, Spain, in December 2004. Painting by Gustave Baumann.
With the launch of metahistory.org in June 2002, John's writings and interviews on an array of topics began to spread through the Internet. In November 2006 Chelsea Green Publishing, in close association with the Marion Institute, released Not in His Image. In April 2009, after a period of productive collaboration lasting seven years, the Marion Institute withdrew sponsorhip of metahistory.org. By that time, John had written the equivalent of 20 books for the site. His association with Joanna Harcourt-Smith also ended at that time.
In December 2006, a month after Not in His Image was published, John discovered the Paris Eadwine Psalter at the National Library in Paris. He introduced his analysis of this extraordinary artifact. a medieval prayer-book loaded with psychedelic imagery of mushrooms, in The Discovery of a Lifetime, the basis of a book in progress, "Wise as Serpents."
August 8, 2008: The Terma of Gaia Awakening
Since October 2008, John Lash is teaching Planetary Tantra and interactive magic with Gaia through the archetype/icon of the Shakti Cluster. This material is intended to orient the general public toward free-form experimental mysticism grounded in an intimate commitment to the earth. Writing on Gnostic/Buddhist parallels, the Mahavidyas, and other topics generated by the Terma, John added another five books to the inventory of metahistory.org.
The creative turbulence of the Terma produced two spin-offs in the form of the Yeats Conversions, series one ("Refuge for the Unborn") and two ("Tantra Outbound"). All in all, John converted over fifty poems by W. B. Yeats into lyrical meditations on Tantric themes and Tibetan Buddhist teachings about desire, enlightenment, and impermanence.
The Yeats Conversions can be found on KaliRising: Intimations of a Mystical Hedonist, along with his more controversial ("transgressive") writings on Kala Tantra and Gaian sexual magic.
Between March 2011 and March 2014 John conducted the Gaian Navigation Experiment (gaiaspora.org) as an exercise in creative imagination along the lines proposed, but not achieved, by Joseph Campbell. Using the Sophianic narrative of the Mysteries as the framing device, he led a group of student around the world through an initiation into the mind and activities of the Earth. Currently, a team of volunteers are transcribing the 144 talks of the GNE, to be combined with diverse writings, charts, and illustrations, and published as the Gaiaspora Logs. This material will amount to ten volumes of 200-250 pages each.
Currently, the approximate inventory of all writings by JLL runs to twelve single-spaced pages in A4 format.
In December of 2014 he introduced the Kalika War Party.
After an absence of a year (October 2015-16), John returned to teaching on the Internet with a new platform within metahistory.org, mythophrenia. Working with a collaborator, he introduced the ADL Manifesto.
From October 2015 to May 2016, John offered the first course for training in Celestics / StarBase in which he reprised and synthesized his work in astrology extending over 35 years. Quest for the Zodiac (above, published 1999) describes how he laboriously worked out the meaning and application of the real-sky zodiac, consisting of visible stars and constellations, by contrast to the popular zodiac of astrological signs, which is is invisible. His system of tracking phylogenetic transfer -- the inheritence an individual draws from the human species at large, rather than from chromosomally determined parental lineage -- is an unparalleled breakthrough in metapsychology and biographical studies. Currently, a small but growing group of students around the world are undertaking the practice of "forensic astronomy," as Celestics may also be called. A sophisticated IT program for StarBase has also been created for this purpose.
Since October 2016, John Lash develops "the superlearning event" on mythophrenia, including his unique treatment of the "Mandela Effect."
1.Comparative mythology, anthropology, ancient cultures, prehistory
2. History of religions and mysticism
3. Archeoastronomy, ancient calendrics
4. Astrology and astronomy, sky lore, precession, World, Ages, the Zodiac
5. Science, physics, cosmological theories
6. Shamanism, entheogenic practices, psychonautics
7. Gnosticism and Mystery Religions, Nag Hammadi Library, Coptic language
8. Dead Sea Scrolls, origins of Christianity
9. Esoterics: alchemy, theosophy, Cabala, anthroposophy
10. Poetry and poetics, Modernism: literature and art
11. Romanticism: histories, writings, theories, literature and art
12. Art books, especially Modernist works; also primitive and esoteric art
13. Arthurian Romance, Celtic legend, Parzival and Tristan studies
14. ET and UFO studies, theories, Philip K. Dick
15. Greek and Roman Classics
16. Gaia theory, ecology, ecofeminism
17. Geology, earth sciences, natural history
18. Goddess religion, matriarchy
19. Hindu Tantra
20. Buddhism : Dzogchen, Zen, Ch’an, Mahayana
Italics indicate areas where John Lash has been been recognized for his writings and expertise.
The archives include about twenty notebooks of esoteric and mythological research, representing studies developed over 40 years. It contains original work on the Zodiac and the constellations (basis for Quest for the Zodiac), and comprehensive research in naked-eye star lore, archeoastronomy, 2012, the World Ages, and precession of the equinoxes. It includes unpublished manuscripts such as Lord of the Clones (early draft of Not in His Image), The Other Zodiac and Dendera Decoded.
Included with these books and archives are full publication rights to four out-of-print books: The Seeker's Handbook, Twins and the Double, The Hero, and Quest for the Zodiac.
Curator sought for inventory, assessment, and disposition of this property.