The Collected and Ephemeral Works of
  Paulina Borsook



I've been having sort of a hard time for the last year. And so, in my franticness --- because I have nothing
else to do, and I think
I've ended my lifetime with therapy
and I tend to be polymorphous perverse and a bit of a pagan, and open to anything. So I've been seeking out lots of ---- spiritual healing


Now, some of these experiences have really been pretty funny.


I did a phone-consult with a woman who lived in the Southern California desert,

famously a homeland for seers and kooks and prophets --- and she said that what my problem was, was that I was spending too much of my time on Arcturus.
Which is why I was having such a hard time here on earth. I kinda of don't think that's true. Now if you know anything about the woowoo side of life, Arcturus (and St. Germaine, who it turns, out one of my homies) was a favorite of Edgar Cayce
. So clearly she was operating in this New Age tradition that had passed out of fashion decades ago --- the people I know in Hollywood had already passed Cayce by the end of 1970s!
And then I had a consult with a very sweet woman. She was blind, but she said she could see my aurain colors.
And I thought, 'well, I hope that means she became blind as an adult and not at birth". She had just gotten over several brain tumors, so the experience was kind of strange.
And she said 'oh no no no no, you are not Stuck'
--- which has not mapped into my life nine months since I talked to her. She was full of helpful recommendations like I should touch my fingers

to each in certain ways, squeezing them together, and that this will get the energy flowing properly, and all will be well.Well I just dont think anything is that simple. So I've had many other spiritual adventures over the last nine months.

A really lovely woman, who teaches acupuncture
at a traditional Chinese medicine college in Hawaii,
is a shamanic healer. She was very matter-of-fact, and I enjoyed her, and I would feel better after I talked to her. But what do you make of the fact that someone sees in your aura glittering, insect-like
parasites? Or nasty dark forces
where the person says 'I've never done anything like this and I don't know what to do with it and I've got to bring in my astral Tibetan sorcerer's knife to kill this stuff'.


Ah, -that's- really helpful!

Or she sees me as having a past life as a nun
from somewhere in Asia who was captured by some bad people and was tortured to death by having her feet nailed to the floor of a ship, and then the ship sank.

And I thought, 'well that's kind of how I -feel-, for sure, but I dont know how helpful this is...'

So anyway I liked her... She was good!

This spiritual journey kind of ended with my seeing a really quite wonderful astrologer
who lived in back of beyond of the Santa Cruz mountains. He used to be an engineer for Bechtel,
a nice Jewish boy from New York
--- somewhat disabled (gotta love a guy with a limp), lived in a funky little trailer overhung by drippy redwoods...I tend to like wounded healers
(poor wounded Chiron-was- the best of the centaurs and Apollo did help him found modern medicine and he -was- the first astrologer), I think they have something.
And he was the best of the lot --- partly because what he had to say was of very cold comfort. "Yeah yeah you're really stuck
and going through a major
life transformation and I know you want it to be over
but too bad it's not".
I think the most amusing encounter with the numinous, in a way, came about when a friend of mine was trying to help me out, because he knew how incredibly unhappy I was; and how agitated and sleepless
and full of suicidal
ideation; and kind of bedeviled;
and lots of anvils were falling on me from above, both literally and figuratively; and it had been four years of things blowing up and things not working out and me kind of just having had it. Now this friend is the most psychically and spiritually gifted person I know but he also, like anyone else, has got his blind he was frantically trying to think of 'what can I do to help you, what can I do to help you?'


So I don't know how he found these people, but he suggested I go to this place called Aesclepion.

In Marin County
You could make a reservation over the phone, and show up, and get some sort of a healing. And I thought "well, ok, you know, I've been to Esalen
twice, I've been to Tassajara,
I've had good massages in my life, I've had great polarity,
therapy. I'll try anything, I'm open."
So. I went to Aesclepion. It was a two-story either former office buiding or maybe apartment building in San Rafael; I think anything woowoo in
Marin is automatically to be yellow-tagged
So I showed up at this place andof course it was all women --- I think it's geared towards women -- but of course it was all women because women always seek out this kind of _healing_). There must have been, I would say, twenty women in the waiting room. So I gave them my name and looked around and wondered what was going on...
So I was just sitting there waiting and then I realized that all of a sudden one of the women was beginning to have her session in front of all
18 of us. One woman was standing behind her and putting her hands on her head, and then two women were sitting in front of her and going into trance ...
and I was watching this and I was thinking, "wait a minute, are they having a session... here? in front
of all 18 other people?

What's going on here?" I was thinking "No, no, no! " I don't know what this really could be about, but I waited to see what else would happen. Then my name was called five minutes later and I was taken into another room and I realized the same thing was going to happen to me. There were three other people having their sessions going on. So there I was listening to, for example, this woman who was very fit

and very thin
and very high-maintenance and very tight and very taut and very buffed (you know, the kind of woman who has a toned body and has probably
had her first face lift). I could overhear from her conversation that she was, I guess, trying to get IV fertilization. So she was -processing- with her spiritual people about how, you know, "I don't want to get too attached
to or over-identified with being pregnant
and not grieve too much if it doesn't work," and I'm thinking, "wait, wait, wait, I don't know you... I don't want to know all this about you!"


So, there are all these other people having their sessions around me. The two people they had assigned to me sat in front of me, went into trance, and after forty minutes of this I came away with this one question from the leader oif the trance session --- "what's your main creative outlet?"

--- to which I responded "umm... being a writer,"
--- to which she responded, eyes closed and lids fluttering "Uhh... you're feeling kind of blocked these days aren't you?" "umm... yes..."
And that was kind of it. Forty bucks.
So I walked out of there going, "I don't fuckin' believe this." But the money was not the part that bothered me because you pay different amounts for these things, and it's never that much, so, fine.
But then it struck me that this place Aesclepion is kind of like EST
or multi-level marketing,
because they have a class you can atttend weekly for four weeks which teaches you how to be a psychic (which I don't think you can teach; I think it's something that people either have the gift for or they don't). So the people doing the healing readings were probably the people who had probably all been to the four week class and now were, like, practicing on the new clients coming in. Nothing beats the viral wealth-building power of multi-level marketing! So I as I was walking out of there thinking "I don't believe this!" but then as I got into my car, it came to me what the experience reminded me of.
Back in the 70's, in the era of "Our Bodies, Ourselves,"
with women taking back their bodies from the patriarchal
medical establishment, and sisters
doin' it for each other --- and I was in a Gestalt
women's group in Berkeley
. I'm not even going to be ashamed of it, it was the times --- I was having a hard time with contraception. I have a very sensitive
body and I can't take birth control pills,
and I can't use a diaphragm
I'd had a Dalkon Shield which as we all know had a minor product liability unpleasantness so I had to have that taken out...
So, I was kind of freakin' out about contraception. At the time, cervical caps were not legal in this country, didn't have that FDA approval, so what was I going to do?
Enter the
Oakland Women's Health Collective, which ran a kind of a gray market
] in contraception. So you'd go to this office in kind of a funky, rundown part of Oakland and the organizers would have groups of, maybe ten women in at a time, where -everyone-
had to take off the clothes on the lower half of their bodies.
And so there you are with a bunch of other women, naked from the waist down, and... I AM PRIVATE!
I -was- struck looking at these women basically from their tummies to their toes that actually we don't
look all that different when our clothes are off... So this very public assembly
line began in what was effectively the waiting room of a dingy office. The women who ran this thing worked their way through us all, attempting to fit you with the right kind of cervical cap --- and once you were fitted, you had to demonstrate your competence by removing and re-inserting the cap correctly in front of your sisters in taking back our power, owning your own sexuality, and being comfortable with your body. All of which was fine by me --- I just didn't want to have to do all that in front of an audience.
So I'm just freaking out and totally freezing. "Get me out of here! I don't like this! I feel violated!" Then, of course, I was even -more- bad because it turns out because I'm kind of even more peculiar physically than than I had previously known so they couldn't quite fit me. My body not getting with the progressive
program somehow me not being ideologically pure enough. The woman writing up my case notes, with deep disapproval on her face, spelled 'woman' 'wimmin' --- I never did figure out if this was illiteracy or righteousness. For it was obvious that If I had been right-minded enough, and on the side of collective action,

I would have been able to be fitted for a cervical cap things. And I just walked out of -there- going, "Oh my god!"

And I realized that at Aesclepion I'd had the exact same experience as at the Oakland Women's Health Collective. Both women-empowered

enterprises are predicated on the idea that we're all interchangeable,
we're all willing to do anything in front of anyone else (provided it's another woman), that because we're all women we're kind of sisters under the skin
and we don't mind getting any kind of undressed in front of each other. It's a weird over-merged, symbiotic,
all-women-are-equivalent thing that just scares me to death.
It's the same experience that I'll have when I'm in a bathroom in some public place and someone I've encountered for the first time ten seconds before because we're both standing at the sink will comment to me about her PMS or her cramps. And I'm want to shriek "Do I know you? And do I want to know this?"

But again, it's the solidarity of "We're all in this together!" I'm sure it works great for many eople, but it's one of those many instances where I feel like I'm a traitor
to my gender.