Stephanie tells us that Pat is on his death bed. She is passing through the vigil one keeps at the side of their beloved who is coming to the end of this life. I can’t believe Pat could be anything but immortal. If it is true, he will be joining Gimele in the part of my soul where people I love are forever young, a place once visited by us and recorded on Al’s videos of our timeless days together.
I hover between overly full of words to share, and respectful silence, honoring my disbelief that time has taken its toll on friends I have not seen in a decade. The urgency of the moment is suspended in a wordless wholeness, and I remember where and what we have been to each other. I know he can read our thoughts from wherever he is now.
There is no one place to begin – so many worthy tales to tell about our friend, Pat Flanagan. He lives large in ways that have shifted our consciousness, and inspired deepening purpose, in us, and the many beloved members of our techno tantric tribe of mad scientists, shamans, inventors, healers and dreamers.
I love about Pat Flanagan is that he thinks and LIVES outside of the box of ordinary reality. When I remember him, it is for abundantly sharing from his stash of incredible mystery, surprising science, profound love and hidden meaning, always with a great sense of humor. Often he tells the story of his childhood encounters with aliens. Every night as he slept awake, they beat him up, urgently insisting that he not fail in his destiny to invent certain things and accomplish his earthly assignments. In the time I have known him, he never wastes a minute of his life, spending it either on science experiments, teaching some fascination he studied, or entertaining a klatch of friends with original comedy, music, impressions of John Wayne, laser lights and dance parties. He is so far out that serious people might not get how down to earth he really is. Never a wallflower, times with Pat are unforgettable.
We meet on a day mid 1990’s when he was giving a lecture in San Francisco. Al and I are there to record, as usual, a genius lecture in SF. On that day, there were two happening–one upstairs, and one downstairs in stacked conference rooms at the Marriot. The other one was a multi-incarnated Tibetan Lama, and what I remember from his talk is the teaching “Once a Buddha, always a Buddha, even in the lifetimes before you wake up and realize you are the Buddha.” Probably, Patrick Flanagan is a buddha, already awake. He told Allan and I when we first met that he remembers meeting us and his future wife Stephanie (our roommate at the time) in our future lives together. We all are friends then, and he tells us that we took a trip into time, travelling back together to appear in the current time line.
Long before our life together unfolds, he foretells that we will create amazing events together involving lightships and lasers. That is exactly what happened over the couple of decades bridging the new millennium. Our cosmic crew created the video fusion Swarm Blendo Station and brought hypnotic ecstatic visuals to light up bands, especially “Lost At Last” from Maui, and revelers at many festivals and dance parties over the years. Pat and his incredible multi-colored lasers supercharge up the festivities and rituals.
Pat and Steph always show up in amazing style, bringing with them such treasures as big green circus tents and giant inflated domes for dancing on the playa at Burning Man, and the awesome towers of Emerald City, which are beacons of light for burners finding their way home in the otherwise confusing darkness after the Man is burned. Pat shared his arts of phi frequencies and sacred geometries and sponsored many mystics to bring out their arts. Picture transformative festivals like the Mystic Beat Lounge and Garden Party, The Anon Salon, The Harmony Festival… There are too many epic adventures to list, but a few can be mentioned here for future embellishment.
Where did all these fireworks begin? Pat and Steph meet and fall in love in Boulder Creek, CA at the Goddess Temple International, a place curated and cultivated by that master of media and mystical arts, the wondrous Penny Slinger Hills.
Penny Slinger is known as “Europe’s Foremost Erotic Artist,” celebrated for her prolific work in many artistic media, film, theater, collage just to name a few. She paints with a photorealistic eye, and the soul of a goddess. Her subjects are sexy and shocking and feminist, historically accurate as they exault deities of all ages in all times. The revolutionary classic book “Sexual Secrets, The Alchemy of Ecstasy” is full of her drawings of tantric arts from the temples of India, which had never been seen in the western world until her talents revealed them on the page. Years after her mastery of all things KamaSutra, Penny is conjured to Boulder Creek around 199? by the famous Light Force Spirulina entrepreneur and wizard, (and Pat’s best friend), Christopher Hills. In a love letter invoking his “God-DESS”, which Penny embodies in every detail, Christopher summoned his soul mate Penny for a romance that continues forever into the future, even beyond the last three years of his life on earth which they enjoyed together. After the passing of her beloved Christopher, Penny devoted herself to hosting many evolutionary cultural events and amazing people at their home amid the redwoods. Artists the world over heard the epic tales of The Goddess Temple, the tantric arts, sacred costuming, dance, theater, music… all muses, goddesses, deities and myths of time were celebrated in wonderful gatherings where epic shamanic arts bubbled into being.
While Stephanie is at the Goddess Temple meeting Patrick, Al and I are home building a storage shed so we can clear out a room in our tiny house for Stephanie to live with us. I called it our “Stephanie Storage Shed,” because I like the alliteration. She was in transition after the death of her husband, a man she felt she had known for many lifetimes. Our place in Boulder Creek is gifted with beautiful nature, soothing and nurturing, and a good place to make new plans. After a few hours of the endless shed building project, Steph takes a break to visit Penny at the Goddess Temple. Days later, as we notice her absence in the completion of the project, we can feel the planets shifting their alignment. We soon learn of the birth of a great love affair between Patrick and Stephanie. They, like us, never left each other’s side much after the lightning struck (metaphorically). That day marks the beginning of the drama, comedy, tragedy, pain and glory of their epic story of forever lovers. For a little while, before their journey took them to the land of longevity in Equator. we got to witness what unfolded close up. For sure, this is not the usual rodeo. Whew, what a ride!
The story of Pat’s life is easy to find on the web, since he told it often, and he is a bit famous among his many admirers and scoffers. I reflect my own echoes of memory here to set the stage for folks who have for some reason not yet discovered. I hope Allan will pepper this text with links to the videos someday, and then you won’t have to imagine so much. We like to say, you can’t make this stuff up!
Some straight stiffs in suits might judge Patrick to be outrageous, a man who told tall tales, who looked like a leprechaun selling snake oil. IMHO, Patrick has mastery of many mystical skills, but primarily he is a scientist who devotes himself to learning the things that mystics of all ages have discovered. He started young, and stayed busy expanding what he knew. I am guessing a five on the enneagram, but jovial as a seven, and dramatic as a four.
As a youngster, for his seventh grade science project, he invents a “little missile detector” while making sense of radio signal patterns he discovered while probing the HAM radio waves. He won the class science fair, and also the attention of the men in black from the 1950’s Pentagon charged with spotting genius in young American scientists. Pat spent the prime of his youth and early adulthood as a researcher in the service of the US government and probably some covert military forces.
Pat’s self-educated wealth of knowledge draws upon the crossroads of an unusual multidisciplinary array of subjects. Over his life of constant study, he achieves mastery of physics, geometry, fluid dynamics, chemistry, anatomy, electrical and mechanical engineering, linguistics, history, and he especially collects insights from original source materials written by any historical or contemporary genius who attracts his attention. All this information, plus an Irish gift of blarney and gab, makes Patrick Flanagan an excellent story teller.
At the age of 14, he invents a device known as the Neurophone® that enabled deaf people to hear. Ultimately, he receives two patents for it after years of suing the US Government following their confiscation of the tech for “national security.” He works on military linguistics projects, teaching dolphins to understand a few instructions and help humans detect enemy submarines. More importantly, he also studies their linguistics and telepathic techniques. A bit of a dolphin himself, Pat sometimes speaks a few dolphin words for fun.
Animals love Patrick, as if they can see the extra light in his aura and his eyes. I once saw a bird meet him for the first time, and totally fall in love. She fluffed up her feathers and started singing, and while Patrick praised her for her beauty, she hopped proudly to sit on his shoulder as long as he liked. He and Steph always kept a beloved cat, a menagerie of birds, and an open channel to messages from wildlife they met at home and while traveling.
As a young man, Patrick is proud to be the apprentice and inheritor of the torch to research the pet projects of Dr Henry Coanda, known as the Father of Fluid Dynamics. “Water is the most important thing you put in your body, but not all water is equal”, said the legendary Romanian scientist as he told the young Dr Flanagan about his 60 year quest for the Fountain of Youth.
Dr Coanda notices that the people of the highest mountain regions of the world, including the Himalayan mountains in Kashmir, India/Pakistan/Tibet, experienced the longest life spans of any known humans. He observes that the unpolluted, highly mineralized water they drink is a common element among the cultures. His research ultimately focuses Patrick on the study H2O and mineral crystallization. Pat becomes an expert in the properties of hydrogen, and creates two nutritional supplements, Crystal Energy for water, and “MicroHydrin.” He manufactures them with a secret process that forms “bucky balls” to house and slowly release powerful alkalizing hydrogen ions for neutralization of free radicals. The original product is now renamed “MegaH” and sold on his Flantech website. Renaming his invention was required because the trademark name of his original formula was stolen and the formula corrupted by the multilevel marketing company who he first trusted to distribute the invention.
Employing his brilliance, Pat knows the highs of success in business, and with his generous and trusting nature, he has also experienced the lows. He is inventive, industrious, and entrepreneurial, so by the time we know him, he has developed quite the Midas touch. Pat loves to pass on lessons in the laws of abundance that he learned along the way. He says things like, “there is always room at the top.” He partnered with us to sell DVDs of his lectures in the early days of the new digital media platform, and our efforts were very successful from the start.
Pat first gains epic financial success after publishing his book, “Pyramid Power.” By this time, we might think of him as a fringe scientist because he embraced the belief that geometrical forms could create physical qualities such as harmony. He taught new agers that placing a fruit under a pyramid could keep it fresh, and many have found the experiment repeatable. More profound for me is his study of the audio harmonics of PHI. Phi is the frequency of the perfect octave, which can be scaled infinitely up or down. Patrick loves to demonstrate this frequency at lectures, resulting in a subtle but noticeable effect. Everyone in the room becomes elevated, experiencing an ineffable and rarified state of well being.
In the early years with Stephanie, we and all the Dreamspell kin are invited to celebrate the “Day Out of Time” at their home in Sedona. Michael Moore, Kelly D,, Allan and I write a play as we caravan from California to Arizona, which we cast and perform at the weekend gathering. “Entering Paradise” is a fiction with the main characters loosely inspired by our hosts, Patrick and Stephanie. Brett Leonard plays the almighty God, sporting a female persona for the new fashions of time. The main characters just died in a car crash, and they have angels on their shoulders trying to coach them on the right thing to say in order to be let in at the pearly gates. After the curtain falls on the performance, many other scenes from the party play out through the night. Stephanie swims bravely and naked through the pond on the hill. Next, she and Pat offer words in a casual wisdom ceremony. Later on the party guests gather around the vanishing pool and look for starships in the sky. We warm ourselves in the giant hot tub with a luscious waterfall that keeps the water clean. As we soak and marvel ancient mysteries and living legends, we reassure ourselves that life is but a dream.
One of our best adventures together transpires in the years 1999 and 2000. Allan and I decide to celebrate the New Year with our tribe on Maui. We offer lightshow visuals and videography for the big NYE event at the Wailuku country club, planning to capture great memories from the parade of old friends and colorful characters celebrating not only the new year, but the new century and new millennium.
1999 NYE kicks off with a Dance of the Seven Veils. Seven rainbow costumed goddesses each dance a color to life, the Green Veil belonging to the hypnotic performer, our friend, Veronica Sandor. Our favorite musicians, LOST AT LAST, play a few sets of familiar trippy trance-dance favorites. We video and blendo and light the ecstatic. After the show inside is over, the tribe moves outside for digeree doos and drumming. Either naked, or dressed in our best millennial fashions, we line up single file just at midnight to dance our way forward in time to the beats, and pass under a flaming arch into the new time frequency. Fire dancers light yin and yang in the air, and magical people like Celestine “Golden” Star and Micheal “Lake” Crowley bless us with poetry, rhythm and myth.
Where were Patrick and Stephanie for this amazing cultural event? Well, they opted out of the Maui celebration. Why? Well a little background sets the scene. The end of the 20th century, coming to completion on December 31, 1999 was famously known as Y2K, Year 2000. A popular myth was circulating among the cultural creatives. People in the know were expecting our world to come to a halt because some programming glitch in the computers we all had so recently become dependent upon would cause a catastrophic crash of the electrical and financial grid,. Such folk believed there would be havoc and mayhem. So, in preparation for this potentiality, Pat and Steph decided to spend the epic holiday safe at their home in Cornville, Arizona.
When nothing happened, we sent a message from Maui to Cornville, and awaited their reply, which did not come immediately. We hoped for the best and feared the worst, but really we had such a great time, we just felt sorry that our buddies were missing it. Our Crew, including LawnMower Man Director Brett Leonard, and his baby mama Kelly D, created a little “Fringe News” web video report about our efforts to survive the prophesied Y2K disaster at our epic gathering on Maui.
We sent the message to Pat and Steph as a holiday greeting, teasing them about their choice to stay safe on the mainland. When we got back from Maui, Al and I visited Pat and Steph to see how they fared, still safe in Arizona.. We made another “Fringe News” report, interviewing Stephanie about their state of the art survival shelter, and Pat’s native Texan skills with a six-shooter. As you can see from the video, we made a great effort to answer this question: Wouldn’t YOU rather spend the doom days at the end of time in a ten by twelve foot dugout with a composting toilet, defending yourself from mutant neighbors who are pissed that you are not sharing your survival stash with them, instead of dancing under the Maui moon to a tribal shamanic beat? That’s why we love you guys! Keeping us focused on how bad things can get!
By the following New Year’s Eve in 2001, we light up the Clock Tower on Pacific Avenue in Santa Cruz together. While he prepares a laser lightshow for the occasion, Pat sponsors us to create a countdown animation for the Santa Cruz First Night celebration. For the last seven minutes of NYE2000, the First Night crowd cuddles and watches our “history of time” video count down to the very stroke of midnight, at which time Pat’s bright green lasers bathe the New Year’s clock tower in prophetic sacred geometries for the new year, 2001. The Future is so bright, we gotta wear shades! The lasers hit a disco ball, and actually burn a small hole in our camera sensor! It was truly a show of Art and Shamanism at their finest hour, at a time we were ready for a bright new future to begin. It was an innocent time, and hopes ran high.
As Burning Man buddies for many years, we treasure our memories of Pat and Steph’s Wizard of Oz theme camp, Emerald City, where we are cast as the wicked witch and the scare crow. Of course, Steoh and Pat play Dorothy and the Wizard. , Our cast of characters also includes Glynda the Good Witch (Rowan Gabrielle), the Tin Man(?), the Cowardly Lion (Sensai Richard Van Donk), flying monkeys, plus Michael Moore as greeter/gatekeeper at the entrance to Emerald City. During the first year the green tent landed on the playa, our crew endures a fierce dust storm that threatened to whisk the tent away. All bodies in our cast of characters each grab a canvas wall and hold the tent to the ground with sheer will and the weight of our bodies while the hurricane rages. Afterwards, as we all unbury ourselves, we realize we are not on the Playa any more, but rather truly in OZ! We are all covered with a healthy coat of Playa dust. And so is everytihing inside the rescued green tent. Patrick grabs a can of Dustoff, which we always brought to keep our screens clean, and starts blasting dust off of our tables and our faces – about as effective as emptying a swimming pool with a teaspoon, as Allan likes to say. We laugh hard and pat ourselves off, kicking up new dust clouds, grateful for surviving the storm.
These precious memories are but a few, and we have survived many other storms, as well. Those tales will rest for anther day. The sun sets as the Sphyx watches, looking to the west. The lion who lurks in that Sphynx’s heart guards the portals of the afterlife, preventing any KA from re-entering through that gate. We have danced together under these eternal mysteries, of Egypt and all time. Thank you once again, my friend, for the many memories this time around.