“Ritual can trap our attention better than anything I can think of,” he said, “but it also demands a very high price. That high price is morbidity; and morbidity could have the heaviest liens and mortgages on our awareness.”

Don Juan said that human awareness was like an immense haunted house. The awareness of everyday life was like being sealed in one room of that immense house for life. We entered the room through a magical opening: birth. And we exited through another such magical opening: death.

Sorcerers, however, were capable of finding still another opening and could leave that sealed room while still alive. A superb attainment. But their astounding accomplishment was that when they escape from that sealed room they chose freedom. They chose to leave that immense, haunted house entirely instead of getting lost in other parts of it.

Morbidity was the antithesis of the surge of energy awareness needed to reach freedom. Morbidity made sorcerers lose their way and become trapped in the intricate, dark byways of the unknown.

– Carlos Castaneda, The Power of Silence, page 264

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