The Story of The Mummery Book

The Story of The Mummery Book

The story of The Mummery Book plunges the reader into the realm of potent archetypes, a world far more mysterious (and far more meaningful) than everyday thinking. Raymond Darling experiences a series of incidents that represent key transformations in the process of his human and Spiritual growth. It is on a deep, and even surrealistic, level (rather than on an ordinary surface level) that this sequence of incidents "makes sense". Each of the incidents encapsulates a whole world of experience, and each incident is narrated in a style of language that particularly fits its mood.

The Incident

The Incident - Part I - The First Room

The Mummery Book starts with a mysterious account of Raymond Darling's birth into the "world of Mom and Dad". We then witness the core incidents of Raymond's childhood, in which he makes essential discoveries about the nature of life and human relations. Much of Raymond's contemplation is concerned with the nature of "the room"- in other words, the nature of the human body-mind that we all find ourselves "living in". Raymond's childhood comes to an end in the "barber shop" scene, when Raymond is "thrown out" of Mom and Dad's world into the world at large, where he must pursue his own destiny.

The Incident - Part 2 - Quandra Loka

Raymond is rescued from the barbershop by his fascinating and mercurial teacher/guide, Meridian Smith, who takes Raymond to a lake called "Dreamer Circle". There Raymond listens to the philosophical musings of Moode Thom, an old fisherman who has been searching for God but has finally despaired of his search.

Once again, Meridian Smith leads Raymond away from a dead end-this time to the forest. Meridian assures Raymond that the forest is where he will find the "True Water" (in other words, the true "medium" in which we all exist-which is Consciousness Itself).

Eventually, Meridian leaves Raymond to find his own way. When Raymond comes to another lake, he confronts an unbelievably gigantic bird, which is clearly an immense and potentially devastating force. This confrontation—at the end of which the bird flies away from the lake-takes Raymond through a huge transformation, giving him the uniquely profound human and Spiritual maturity he will need in order to continue his ordeal.

Raymond wakes to find himself being cared for by Bue Ma, the mistress of the lake (called "God's End") and a character who represents the wild and untamed aspect of Energy. She tells him the story of the great bird, then she points him in the direction of her daughter, Quandra, far away on the lake shore. When Raymond reaches Quandra, they fall into the most intense love-embrace, each overwhelmed to find his or her true heart-beloved. But the intensity of their mutual love soon breaks Raymond's heart with the knowledge of Quandra's mortality, and he walks away from her as she sleeps. Here, and throughout The Mummery, the relationship between Raymond and Quandra is a representation not only of an intense human love-relationship but also of the "relationship" between the two fundamental Principles of Being-the ("male") Principle of Consciousness and the ("female") Principle of Energy (or Light).

Back at Bue Ma's house, Raymond is ushered into her bedroom, where Quandra appears to be doing a strip-tease in front of a crowd of men. After all the men, including Raymond, have been driven mad with sexual desire, the strip-teaser pulls her Quandra-mask off and reveals herself to be Bue Ma.

Yet again, Meridian Smith rescues Raymond, flying him up and out through the roof, this time however to leave him to his own devices.

The Incident - Part 3 - The Mummery

Having come to land far away from God's End, Raymond walks through the forest again and ends up back at Dreamer Circle. There he finds, to his astonishment, that a hugely fat and self-important preacher named Evelyn Disk has created an entire religion about Raymond, centered at the great building called the "Tabernacle of Saint-and-Ear". Adi Da Samraj's portrayal of Evelyn Disk and his followers is a biting satire, a no-holds-barred exposť of how egos inevitably make religion into a meaningless mummery.

Despite Evelyn's obvious falseness, Raymond consents to go along with whatever Evelyn asks him to do-because Evelyn promises that he will reunite Raymond with Quandra. The ultimate moment of reunion is supposed to be a grand ritual in the Tabernacle, but at the pinnacle of the ritual, Raymond is devastated to discover that Quandra is there lying dead in a casket.

Even though Raymond is overcome with grief, Evelyn pushes him to go on with the ritual, which now requires Raymond to stand trapped in a doorway holding an egg between his fingers. The egg, with its hard shell that separates it and protects it from the world, is a symbol for the ego (in its constant impulse to remain separate and independent and unthreatened). Raymond is told to look into the egg (through a pinhole in one end), where he sees Quandra paddling towards him in a boat on the water. Evelyn instructs Raymond to remain like this for all eternity, always holding the egg. For a long time, Raymond remains transfixed with this vision, waiting for Quandra to reach him, but she never gets any closer. Eventually, Raymond realizes the futility of trying to achieve union while remaining committed to the principle of separateness (as represented by the egg), and he drops the egg.

The Judgement

Chapter 1 - The Mummery

Outraged at Raymond's dropping of the egg, Evelyn and his followers have Raymond incarcerated in a state mental institution. The Narrator highlights the open hypocrisy of the Saint and Ear religionists and their "quest" to fly to heaven on a carpet of words and gestures.

Chapter 2 - Quandra Loka

In the asylum, Raymond continues his contemplation of Quandra and of Reality altogether, ultimately coming to the most profound Realization that he is already One with Quandra (in other words, that Consciousness and Energy are Always Already One) and that the search for Unity is (therefore) entirely unnecessary.

Chapter 3 - The First Room

In his room alone, all limitations are utterly gone beyond, as Raymond's body dies and he enters the Domain of Infinite and Eternal Love-Bliss-Light.

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