If you read Friday's blog post, and last Monday's blog post, you may have realized that there was some tension in the room during Patrick O'Leary's presentation on the history of the Enneagram.
Tato Gomez, who is associated with the Arica Institute, was present, and disputed some of O'Leary's statements about Arica and Oscar Ichazo. Here is an excerpt from Gomez's bio:
"Originally from Chile, Tato is the first producer of 'baby music' in the world. He is also a Trainer and Sponsor of the Arica System and Integral Philosophy. Produced with the help of Oscar Ichazo, the CD The Sound of Light introduced Ichazo's 'sound mysticism' concept and the work with the Seven Sacred Vocals of the ancients." Gomez was a co-presenter of the pre-conference program on the Arica Teachings, which Mary Beth and I did not attend.
Here is the first of O'Leary's statements that Gomez disputed:
O'Leary said that Ichazo learned about the Enneagram from a Gurdjieff group. Gomez said he did not. The way O'Leary put it (because he was using an evolutionary metaphor) was that Gurdjieff "inseminated Ichazo." Gomez insisted that Gurdjieff "never inseminated Ichazo." It was quite humorous, actually, for those of us with Beavis and Butthead mentalities. Eventually, O'Leary allowed that the "insemination" might not have been direct, but that Gurdjieff's ideas were out there in the culture and that Ichazo could have, in some way, picked up on them. Gomez seemed to accept this okay.
The two men had totally different impressions of Ichazo. When O'Leary first heard about Ichazo, he seemed to be "a terrifying individual."O'Leary described learning about the Enneagram in ways that mirror Genesis -- "A very tempting thing -- here's this knowledge, but don't use it. And there's this figure waiting with lightning bolts." Of course, those of us who know this story know that O'Leary does use the knowledge, and that Ichazo sues him.
By contrast, Gomez described Ichazo as "an enlightened individual" who was treated by shamans and saw 108 Enneagrams in a vision. Hearing Gomez talk, I began to entertain the idea that the whole Metatron business might have just been a snide comment that got blown out of proportion, like Ichazo's version of "bigger than Jesus." Anyway, Ichazo and Arica simply didn't want the Enneagram to be spread to early, before it was proven. However, Gomez said that now it sees that it should have been done. At this point in the conversation O'Leary and Gomez hugged. O'Leary attributed some of the rift to the difference between an Eastern and a Western perspective, between elite mysticism, in which knowledge is esoteric, and public science, in which it is disseminated for criticism.
Gomez gave the impression that whatever it is the Arica Institute has been working on for all this time is almost ready and will be released to the public very soon. I, for one, am on the edge of my seat.
Whether the Arica trainings are affordable (Gomez) or expensive (O'Leary) is a matter about which the two men will have to agree to disagree.
While O'Leary typed Ichazo as 9w8, Ichazo's story seems like classic 5 stuff to me, what with the secrecy, the delaying of closure, and the attempts to scare others away from his niche.