Friday, 2 January 2009

Bad Santa (Part III)

We looked, shortly before Christmas, at the 'miraculous' quality which often adheres to events of an occult nature; and, in our last 'Bad Santa' post, at a sampling of the several 'Christmas miracle' stories which did the rounds of the middle-market newspapers during the festive period. Despite having initially ruled it out as a psychic operation, there are two outstanding factors to the 'Santa Massacre'- including the rumour of a miracle- that deserve a quick Fortean once-over, the conclusion of which will draw this brief investigation to a close.

Bruce Jeffrey Pardo (the name is significant- Loren Coleman and others have observed the statistically improbable number of North American serial killers with three names; a theory apparently devised by Mel Gibson's [true-to-life] character in Conspiracy Theory) acted according to a carefully conceived plan. Instead of serving as usher at midnight mass at his local Catholic church (in Montrose- also significant, as we will see) Pardo drove eighty miles to the home of his former in-laws in Covina. (His short-lived- three-year- marriage to Sylvia Orza had ended quite recently, and Pardo was reportedly extremely unhappy at the punitive terms of the divorce settlement; a situation compounded by the loss of his job as an aerospace engineer in July.) Donning the infamous Santa suit, the sleeves of which he used to conceal two handguns, and with a trunk full of ammunition, a makeshift gas dispenser and a pipe bomb, Pardo arrived at the house and knocked on the door. Tragically, his call was answered by an eight-year old girl, one of the many people gathered at the Ortega home for their annual Christmas Eve celebration. According to the Daily Mail, 'Without a word, [Pardo] pulled out a pistol and shot [the girl, at point-blank range] in the face.'

He then embarked on a Travis Bickle-esque spree, waving two semi-automatics and finally reducing the house to cinders with his homemade flame-thrower, injuring himself badly in the process. Anyone unfortunate enough to come within range, Pardo shot at: including another child, a sixteen year-old girl shot in the back. (Betraying the typically twisted humour of the Cosmic Joker, Pardo had earlier served as usher during another Christmas Eve service at Holy Redeemer Church, Montrose- the children's mass, at 5.30pm.) Despite taking the lives of his ex-wife and eight members of her family in the rampage, his victims did not number either of these two girls. 'Miraculously,' writes journalist David Gardner, 'the eight-year-old girl who was shot at point-blank range survived, as did a 16-year-old girl who was shot in the back. Both were being treated in hospital but were said not to be in danger.'

(There was a third miraculous escape, when Roxanne Jauregui, Sylvia Pardo's friend of thirty years, decided at the final minute not to attend the Ortega's traditional Christmas Eve party but to Midnight Mass in another location instead. Had she not changed her mind in this way, she would most likely have perished alongside her friend in the massacre- see here.)

Miracles notwithstanding, another occult criterion much in evidence was that grimly ironic twisted humour, calling card (a joker, presumably) of the Secret Commonwealth, referenced above. Pardo's service at the children's mass earlier in was by no means the only example; for the Ortegas, we discover, held a family party every Christmas Eve... and every year a neighbour had dressed up as Santa Claus to entertain the children and other guests. This year, however, the neighbour had moved away... and, until Pardo arrived to perpetuate the family tradition, there had been no visit from Santa. There is a also a certain fearful symmetry at play in the fact that the Ortega's house was reduced to a charred ruin; for only last month (November 2007), Pardo's mother, the suggestively-named Nancy Windsor, lost her mobile home in the Sayre (or Salmar) Fire, the worst loss of homes due to fire in the history of Los Angeles (see here and here.)

(Salmar, intriguingly, means 'sea of trees', from the Latin silva, woods, and mar, sea; in reference to the region's former claim to greatness as the site of the world's biggest olive groves. Silva, as we will see, is something of a recurrent motif in this investigation.)

By far the most convincing evidence for a conspiracy of an occult stripe, however (and there is just the smallest suggestion of a terrestrial one: according to reports, upon exiting the house post haste, one of Pardo's would-be victims cried, 'They've shot my family!'- an odd thing to say, even under what were most unusual circumstances) are the names of those involved. Of these, that of Bruce Jeffrey Pardo is the most interesting, being, as it is, highly suggestive of the bardo states recorded in the Bardo Thodol, more commonly known as the Tibetan Book of the Dead, and elsewhere. In the first article in this short series, I described the 'fugue-like state of consciousness which is the key' to occult operations, that essence of the thing, the core content which enables these events to unfold in that spontaneous, involuntary- seemingly predestined- fashion which is their hallmark. And this is very interesting, because the description of a bardo- as a more accurate translation of the Book's title, The Book of the Intermediate State, reveals- is a 'between state,' 'an interval or transition between two mental states, whether experienced in life or after death.' (See here.)

According to the author of the website from which the above quotation derives, there are six main bardo states distinguished in Tibetan Buddhism. Of these, those experienced after death are the most important, and intructions on how to navigate these are the basis of the Bardo Thodo. Posthumous bardo states are by no means the only kind, however, as the article makes clear:

'A single life span is itself a bardo state, a transitional zone in a larger cycle of rebirths. Dreams are bardo states that occur within the daily round, in the interval between falling asleep and waking; feelings of uncertainty, paranoia, and delusion are sometimes grouped with dreams on a looser interpretation of this second bardo state. A meditative trance is a third type of bardo state, an intermediate zone between ordinary consciousness and enlightened awareness. These are the main bardo states of life.'

Encapsulated above is a perfect summary of the states of consciousness which, in the context of occult operations, exert a powerful fascination over my mind. Dreams are certainly related to that Faculty X I am seeking to define, though more important- as stated above- is that dream-like interval between waking and sleep. 'Uncertainty, paranoia and delusion' often accompany those who dwell too long in- or possibly on- this 'in-between' state; states that will be familiar not only to Conspiraloons Like Us, parapolitical researchers and Ufologists, but were those in which Jeffrey Bruce Pardo was fully immersed shortly before last Christmas Eve. Key, however, is the 'meditative trance'- or, my preferred terminology, the hypnotic trance- which lies just beyond ordinary consciousness. This is the seat of the imagination, I believe, of memory, real and false; is 'where' transmissions of an occult nature emanate from; and is the seat of the so-called abduction phenomenon.

There are a great many concepts contained above, concepts which will take us many further posts to fully unpack; the important point, for these present purposes, is that those bardo states which occur 'within the daily round' are precisely those which facilitate an occult operation (Faculty X)- and the fact that Pardo's name can be interpreted as almost referencing the same is a coincidence I find suggestive, at least. Other names (of both people and places) involved in this story contain similar hints, as the final part of this series will seek to demonstate.



The Empire Never Ended... More to follow...

1 comment:

wise woman said...

Tremendous Ben
Not any easy subject to grapple with at all.

Ever since I looked into the events surrounding the sinking of the Lusitania, I've found I have to have a much wider angle of vision - as you say some sort of 'X Factor' - which seems to pull events & people into 'some kind of arena for some kind of show down'. There is a shape, an overall pattern or blue print that seems to emerge, but can't be pinned to a particular cause.

Really interested in where you are going with this.

All the best