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Tuesday, 14 August 2018

First draft "Eel Pie Dharma: The Movie" completed

On 2018-08-14, at 12:42 PM, Tom Hanson wrote:

Dear Chris,

I’m very pleased to tell you that today at 17:38 we completed the first draft of Eel Pie Dharma - The Movie. It took us just over a year, but we fucking did it! It’s 111 pages and needs a hell of a lot of rewriting but we finally got to the end.

We’re elated to have finished, but the hard work begins now.

I know that Sam wants to write you regarding scenes etc so I will leave that to him but I thought I’d just drop you this note to let you know and to send you some positive vibes.

All the very best and thanks again for allowing us to use your amazing story.

Tom x

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Congrats Tom and Sam!

As we babbled in awe in our hippie days, WOW!  FAR OUT! TOO MUCH!

I'm looking forward to helping Sam in any way I can with filling in the deets for specific scenes. EPID was meant to be the outline for a novel, which turned into a memoir, which evolved into a haibun - and now a movie script!!! So there are many interesting escapades and incidents which didn't make it into my pages, but which may be helpful for fleshing out your script. Last night on a whim I clicked on a youtube vid of Humble Pie singing '30 days in the hole', and ended up reminiscing and watching vids of 60s groups for 2 1/2 hours, so the memory banks are somewhat refreshened  :  )

And of course thanks to both of you, Tom and Sam, for taking such an interest in my story and the story of so many others who lived in those beautifully creative and turbulent times!

peace and continued inspiration!


Sunday, 5 August 2018

T Lobsang Rampa and Eel Pie Island Dharma

Hi David,

A friend sent me the link to your fascinating piece on good ol' T. Lobsang Rampa. What a hoot TLR must be having in Brahma or wherever dharma writer/creators/bodhisattvas pass some restorative time  :  )

Yep, count me in as another neo-Buddhist lured in by that playful old Brit bodhisattva. Imperialist era Brits were always excellent at miming the lives of other cultures - in Canada there's the example of Grey Owl, also known as Archie Belaney. Archie likely did more for our First Nations and nature writing in Canada than anyone else I can think of offhand. And there's T. E. Lawrence etc. etc. . Most of these imaginative Brit "charlatans" did far more good than harm for the peoples they emulated and imaginatively wrote about. Maybe not so much Kipling, tho.

I would have been in my mid-teens when I read The Third Eye, passed on to me by my father. My dad was in the Royal Air Force (RAF) in WW2 when he met my Canadian mother while taking training in Canada. I was born in Canada in 1948, and recently turned 70 at the end of June. TLR's The Third Eye was probably the most influential book I ever read. My parents could never agree on where to live - the UK or Canada - so they settled on moving to the southern United States. I was born in Canada, but lived in the US from ages 7 to almost 21. I was 18 at the height of the Vietnam War years, and was eligible for the draft, even tho I was only a "resident alien", as I always retained my Canadian citizenship.

I vigorously opposed the VN War and the draft, which caused a lot of sleepless nights and undoubtedly surveillance and hassles from the amerikan authorities and the draft board. What kept me relatively sane was the memory of reading TTE, so when I came across a used paperback on yoga, I devoured it. In a short time I could sit in the full lotus position for many hours at a time, and the book, with its brief instructions on breath control and mindfulness, became my bible.  In June of 1969 my anti-war effforts were rewarded with 3 draft notices in a week, and and left the US of A for the UK.

I also discovered another key aspect of my entire life at this time in my late teens. Haiku. I've been writing and publishing haiku and then haibun since 1967, so that's over half a century now!

The combination of yoga/Buddhism/haiku came together when I wrote one of the first English language haibun in1988 and self-published it as Eel Pie Dharma in 1990. Weed, one of the other Eel Pie hippie communards, graciously put the entire text online in the early 2000s, where my publisher discovered it and encouraged a professional reprint in 2012. I decided to add "Island" to the title to clarify things.

A year ago two British actors came across Eel Pie Island Dharma on my friend Weed's website, and asked for an option to write a movie script based on the book. Of course I agreed, and the project seems about to enter its second year.

Following is Weed's home page for Eel Pie Island Dharma.

I also have a blog, Riffs and Ripples from ZenRiver Gardens:

I'll sign up for your blog, and thank you for writing this piece on TLR!

peace & poetry power!

Chris (Faiers)/cricket   (haijin name)

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