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coyjay profile image

coyjay

Joined 9 years ago

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I have recently retired from thirty plus years as a middle school teacher in Tracy, Ca. During this time I studied and put to practice the teachings of Henry Miller, Castaneda, Gurdjieff, and Krishnamurti. My novels and short stories reflect the philosophy of these spiritual teachers.

I first became interested in writing as co-owner of the Trivia Coffee House in Trenton, New Jersey in 1959. At the Triv. everyone was writing stream of consciousness novels and poetry, or at least dreaming about doing so. More than Beat literature it was the writing of Henry Miller that opened up a whole new reality for me. I began to realize the truth of his statement, "Every thing they tell you is a lie... Everything!" Reading Miller, I began to question all the values that I had accepted since childhood. Somehow, I got turned on to Jungian and Freudian psychology during the Triv. period also. Discovery of the personal and collective unconscious opened another avenue of investigation.

When our coffee house failed, Vance and I split for Alaska deciding to go off on our own to find, "What it's all about man?" And, it didn' t take us too long to discover that earning a living is what it's all about in Twentieth Century America. So, the writing is put on the back burner while I begin to take classes at Oakland City College. When I earn my Master's in History and begin my teaching career in 1967, the writing is pushed further back. It is not until 1969 when I quit my first teaching job, and begin driving cab in Oakland that I get back into the writing mode. Driving cab, I begin reading Henry Miller again, and discover poets like Walt Whitman Dylan Thomas, Bob Dyan, Simon and Gurfunkle, philosphers like Henri Bergson, and spiritual teachers like Krishnamurti. Two plus years on the streets of Oakland, Berkeley, and San Francisco leave a mark on me that could not be erased not even after finding another teaching job and going back to my career in education. Once I began writing my cab driving novel, teaching became my day job. Writing and discovering the meaning of life once again became my reason for being.

In the early seventies, we moved to a hundred year old house in the middle of a sheep ranch. It was there that I put to practice the teachings of Castaneda, and began writing Sunday Mornings. In the mid 1980's, I discovered the Gurdjieff school and began to practice Self Remembering. I continued to study Krishnamurti learning that the word is never the reality that exists outside of thought.

Birth Place: Philadelphia, PA USA

Accomplishments: Co-owner Trivia Coffee House 1959-1960.
Bachlor's Degree History 1966.
Master's Degree History 1967
Cab Driver 1969-1971
Middle School Teacher 1971-2003

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