Category Archives: SHERLOCK HOLMES: MY LIFE

“I address this letter of introduction to the following monograph, written by my own hand. I have undertaken to commit this autobiographical revelation of the factual events of my life to writing, at the suggestion and encouragement of my best friend in the world, my brother Mycroft Holmes. The written record of my adventures as conveyed by Dr. John Hamish Watson, rather than myself, as you will read herein, are a fallacious perversion of the reality of my own identity and activities. – Sherlock Sherrinford Holmes”

A biography of Sherlock Holmes.

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V is for VEGGIE VAMPIRE

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“Count Dracula, and his kindred spirits, may be considered to be “evil” from the point of view of mankind.  However, apart from the prejudice of the human victims who do not desire to serve as food for others who drink their blood, the vampire can not be considered to be anything other than an immortal spiritual being, attempting to persist and survive in a quasi-corporeal form.

I esteem that there is only one principle difference between a human being who eats a roasted chicken or pork or beef, and a vampire who drinks the living blood of a human being.  That is, that the vampire, by consuming the living blood, derives a more sustainable form of energy than the man who eats the dead flesh of an animal.

The man who eats dead meat lives 65 years, his own spirit is confined inside a fragile piece of flesh, with little or no self-awareness regarding his potential capabilities as a spiritual entity. Whereas, the vampire, consuming only the living blood of its victim, maintains an extreme spiritual power and ability, as well as physical strength and longevity which borders upon immortality!

Who is to say which condition is more or less desirable? There seems to me to be absolutely no limit to the inanity and credulity of the human race. Homo Sapiens! Homo idioticus!

Yet, it is entirely understandable that men do not trouble themselves with grotesque speculations as to the nature of life beyond the grave.  They have enough to do in this world. Life is a beautiful thing. The man who appreciates its beauties enjoys a sufficient understanding of life without dabbling in religions or spiritualism.

Religion is a fraud which have been exposed a hundred times and yet priests continue to find fresh crowds of foolish devotees whose insane credulity and superstitious prejudice make them impervious to all rational arguments.  One can only leave them to seek destinations of their singular Fates, which they have been predetermined for them.

Unless we practice eternal vigilance against these vampires, we will continue to be afflicted and effected by the contagion of their parasitical insanity.  The vitality of every civilization which has crumbled into disrepair and dust was drained of life by these diabolical beings!”

— Excerpted from the book SHERLOCK HOLMES: MY LIFE, by Lawrence R. Spencer

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SHERLOCK HOLMES – MY LIFE, Chapter Four

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CHAPTER FOUR: A CHARMING CHESHIRE CHEESE

 

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”, asked Mr. Dodgson.

“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to”, I replied.

“I don’t much care where…”,  said Mr. Dodgson.

‘Then it doesn’t matter which way you go”, said Watson.

“I have solved many obscure and nefarious cases in my career to date.  However, the singular complexity of the matter which stands before us now — these accusations and alternative explanations, present features of a most illogical and inexplicable nature”, I said, passing the butter dish across to Mr. Dodgson.

“Prey, do have some butter with your bread “, I suggested, “while I ring for our landlady, Mrs. Hudson, to bring up the main course of our meal”, I said, stepping across to pull upon the bell chord to alert our mistress that we were ready to be served.

Momentarily, Mrs. Hudson appeared at the door, huffing with exertion of having carried a large tray of dishes up the stairs. She set the tray upon the sideboard.

“Will there be anything else you require, gentlemen?”, she asked. “If not, then I will retire for the evening. I’ve had a long day of shopping and preparations and cooking and cleaning already. Just leave the dishes outside the door when you have finished, and I will fetch them in the morning”, she said bowing herself out the door.

“Please leave to door open, Mrs. Hudson, if you would be so kind”, I said as she started to close it behind her.

“That will not be necessary, Mr. Holmes”, said Dodgson.  “I feel quite reassured that I am safe with you”.

“Very well then. Good evening to you all then, gentlemen”, she said. She glanced back at me curiously and pushed the door closed, turned and trudged back down the stairs.

The meal was hearty, yet bland, as is the traditional fair for the citizens of London: boiled flesh of some unidentifiable creature, peeled and boiled potatoes with a few carrots, bread, butter, and a pot of tea.  Fortunately, I had taken the trouble to supply ourselves with two bottles of red table wine for the occasion, which enlivened the otherwise nondescript flavor of the food.

As we finished eating our meal, and placing the dishes outside the door, as instructed by Mrs. Hudson, I reviewed the peculiar features of our situation with my companions.

“For the sake of securing the status of my identity, and to respond the most singular accusations brought against us by Dr. Doyle, please let me summarize the possible resolutions to this anomaly. Several possible answers may be postulated, as follow:

1. That I am impersonating a fictional character created by Dr. Doyle in his works of fiction, notwithstanding the testimony of Constable Barrett, who one might argue, is himself a fictional character.  That being the case, all here present must also be fictional characters, including Dr. Dodgson.

2. That I am a real person, from whom Dr. Doyle, as the author of works of fiction, has copied my name, address, actions and characteristics as a source of inspiration for his stories.

3.  That I am a real person, and that the author is an imposter, or a fictional character.  Inasmuch as you visited the alleged gentleman yourself upon this very morning, one would assume that he, like ourselves, is not a fictional character.

4.  That Dr. Watson and I are both fictional characters, including all of our surroundings, environs, apartment, possessions, bodies, memories, expertise and identities: a hypothesis which seems to have been disproven thus far, unless further evidence presents itself to our attention.

5. That Mr. Dodgson and Dr. Doyle are real characters, including all of their surroundings, environs, apartments, possessions, bodies, memories, expertise and identities, and Dr. Watson and I are both impersonating fictional characters, as discussed.

6. An alternative solution may also be proffered: that each and all of what is supposed to be “real”, whether deemed fact or fiction by the observer, are equally illusions. Therefore, neither comprises a definition of reality or fantasy, accept by the subjective opinion of the observers, creators and / or characters”, I concluded.

I paused momentarily to fill my pipe, and allowed sufficient time for the gravity and details of my proposition to be absorbed by Dr. Watson and our guest.  Neither of them had anything further to offer in the argument at the moment. No doubt they were confounded by the apparent absurdity of my arguments. Nonetheless, taking silence as permission to continue, I resumed my deductive analysis.

“I have observed that the lowest and vilest alleys in London do not present a more dreadful record of sin than does the smiling and beautiful countryside”, gentlemen.

“I do not see what you are getting at, Holmes”, said Watson. Mr. Dodgson looked up with equal, but silent, agreement.

“On the contrary, Watson, you can see everything. You fail, however, to reason from what you see. You are too timid in drawing your inferences”, I said, taking a seat in my armchair, and inviting our guest to take a cigar from the box I offered.

“However, before we digress, let me allude to the discussion that Mr. Dodgson and I had when I visited him in is quarters.  He himself mentioned several methods of investigation which he has studied in the alchemical works of Sir Isaac Newton, and in his own mathematical application of portmanteau poetry to the development of mathematical thinking.

“Circumstantial evidence is a very tricky thing.  It may seem to point very straight to one thing, but if you shift your own point of view a little, you may find it pointing in an equally uncompromising manner to something entirely different”, I said while crossing over to the sideboard.

I picked up the manuscript that Mr. Dodgson had given me when I visited him entitled, Alice’s Golden Hour. While flipping through the pages to find a particular passage, I asked Mr. Dodgson a question about his work.

“Might I inquire as to the origin of one of the fictional characters whom Alice meets in Wonderland — The Cheshire Cat?”

“Frankly, I believe the idea came to me from an old expression I learned as a child”, replied Mr. Dodgson after momentarily pondering the question. “I believe it to be derived from a cheese which was sold in Cheshire, near my home. The cheese was molded in the shape of a cat. The cheese was cut from the tail end first, so that the last part eaten was the head of the smiling cat”.

“Very well”, I said. “Let us then observe that you have extracted something from the reality of your childhood, and with a liberal application of your creative imagination have used it to conjure an illusion…an alternative to reality, as it were. Is this not so, Mr. Dodgson?”

“Well, yes, I suppose. However, I fail to see what relevance my fictional tales have to our current situation. Certainly you do not suppose that I am to believe that reality can be conjured from a work of fiction?  The notion is absurd!”, he replied.

“I do not ask you, or anyone, to believe anything whatsoever. Belief is a matter of personal opinion or conviction which cannot be shared by anyone else, accept to the degree that they share a similar opinion.  Some  men believe that the world was created by an omnipotent, invisible being in seven days. People in some aboriginal tribes believe that the world is supported on the back of an enormous elephant which stands upon the shell of a colossal tortoise”, I said, finally arriving at the pages I was looking for in the manuscript.

“As for myself, I believe that what is true for you is true for you, although no other person may agree upon your belief. Regardless, a truth for you, may not be true for others. Is that not a fundamentally sound assumption?”, I asked.

“I suppose you are right Mr. Holmes. It is difficult, if not impossible, to stay apace of your ability to remain logical in the face of a situation which is so absurdly enigmatic. You are proposing that the philosophical paradigm of reality should be considered of equal importance with fiction. How can you ever solve a criminal case, your occupation, if every piece of hard evidence could be a contrivance of imagination on the part of the investigator or of the criminal?”, said Mr. Dodgson.

“Quite the contrary”, I said. “But rather than keeping to my methods alone, let me ask you what meaning you attribute to the following passage in your book”, I said, turning to the page which described in the encounter between Alice and the Cheshire Cat.

“Let me read your own words to you.”

“…she was a little startled by seeing the Cheshire Cat sitting on a bough of a tree a few yards off.

The Cat only grinned when it saw Alice. It looked good-natured, she

thought: still it had VERY long claws and a great many teeth, so she

felt that it ought to be treated with respect.

‘Cheshire Puss,’ she began, rather timidly, as she did not at all know

whether it would like the name: however, it only grinned a little wider.

‘Come, it’s pleased so far,’ thought Alice, and she went on. ‘Would you

tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?’

‘That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.

‘I don’t much care where–‘ said Alice.

‘Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,’ said the Cat.

‘–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,’ Alice added as an explanation.

‘Oh, you’re sure to do that,’ said the Cat, ‘if you only walk long

enough.’

Alice felt that this could not be denied, so she tried another question.

‘What sort of people live about here?’

‘In THAT direction,’ the Cat said, waving its right paw round, ‘lives

a Hatter: and in THAT direction,’ waving the other paw, ‘lives a March

Hare. Visit either you like: they’re both mad.’

‘But I don’t want to go among mad people,’ Alice remarked.

‘Oh, you can’t help that,’ said the Cat: ‘we’re all mad here. I’m mad.

You’re mad.’

‘How do you know I’m mad?’ said Alice.

‘You must be,’ said the Cat, ‘or you wouldn’t have come here.’

Alice didn’t think that proved it at all; however, she went on, ‘And how

do you know that you’re mad?'”

“So, Mr. Dodgson, let me pose the same question to you that young Alice asked of the chimerical cat in your own story: how do you know whether you are mad or not mad? How would you satisfy yourself that I am not mad? How do we know that everyone is mad or not mad?”, I said, rising from my chair to place the manuscript upon the sideboard.

I refilled my pipe once again, in anticipation of the protracted debate that was sure to follow on the heels of these profoundly absurd, yet existential queries and arguments.

Mr. Dodgson did not seem the least bit nonplused by my insinuation  regarding his sanity, or the sanity of all. Rather, he thanked us very cordially for our hospitality, rose from his chair and reached the door to exit the apartment. As he reached the door he turned back to me.

“Mr. Holmes, I will leave the resolution of this mystery entirely in your very capable hands. If anyone were able to solve the questions you pose to me, I assure you that I am not that man. Neither are any of the mentors whom I have studied, including Sir Isaac himself. I trust that you will be kind enough to inform me of your eventual success, if such is possible. Good day to you, gentlemen”.

With that, he departed, clomped down the stairs. Through the window we saw him walk briskly away through a light drizzle of rain in the direction of the train station.

“What do you make of it Holmes?”, asked Watson, who seemed to have been disquieted by our visitor. “I must admit that our meeting with this  gentleman is the most perplexing I have ever had,” he said, resuming his seat in front of the fire.

“Yes. Most perplexing, indeed”, I agreed, taking my own seat and refilling my pipe. “Most perplexing.”

“What do you know of this Dr. Doyle?”, I asked Watson after an interlude of silent contemplation.

“Well, I can’t say that I know anything about the man”, he said. “Have you not heard anything of him?”

“No.  I have not.  However, our friend, Mr. Dodgson seems to know quite a good deal about the fellow. So much so, that he was entirely certain that it is I that perform the part of an imposter in an imaginary play invented by this man!”, I observed.

“Well, my dear fellow, in my professional opinion as a doctor, I am certain that this gentleman is suffering from the residual effects of some narcotic. His own fantastical story, from which you read to us this evening, seems very peculiar indeed!”, said Watson. “And, his behavior is quite inappropriate for a professor of mathematics at Oxford, certainly. Perhaps the allegations suggested in the newspaper, that the man is a pedophile, or a kidnapper, should be investigated more thoroughly”, he suggested.

“Perhaps”, I said. “Let us sleep upon the matter for the moment. In this instance, however, the best way of successfully acting a part is to be it”, I conjectured. ”

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Copyright © 2011 by Lawrence R. Spencer. All Rights Reserved.

 

THE ADVENTURE OF ADVENTURES

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( Painting:  “Cupid Sleeping” by Miridori Louis, 1652 )

“Just a politicians abuse the trust of their constituents to gain personal power and wealth, rather than to serve their electorate,  so does the myopic mind consider that wisdom or wealth might be had from a magic potion!  Indeed, the mythical Fountain of Youth could never be discovered by an explorer in the New World at the cost of murdering countless native inhabitants.  The proverbial ‘eye of the needle’ does not admit the soul of a wealthy or brutal man into Nirvana.

As with many other alchemists before me, I have conducted a continuing series of careful observations upon the effects of a vast variety of chemical combinations.  The purpose of these is to discover and perfect a solution which can be ingested or injected into the human body to enhance the ability to perceive, understand and operate at an elevated level, both physically and spiritually — the latter being of senior importance to the former.

Originally, I was introduced to the notion that chemical alteration of the human system might alter or enhance the ordinary state of awareness or ability, through my study of chemistry, or more correctly, alchemy.  Many a sage has dabbled seriously with attempts to transmute the soul of man to a more profound understanding of life through chemical manipulation.  No less a personage than Sir Isaac Newton himself, as Mr. Dodgson observed during our first visit, spent a considerable number of years in this quest.  What results he may have obtained are not known, although it goes without saying that the scientific accomplishments of the great man are virtually unparalleled in human history!

Is it not probable that his mental acuity, or indeed his phenomenal genius, could have been augmented by his experimentations in alchemy? Reportedly, the man invested a prodigious number of years into this science, yet never shared his findings with anyone.  For what purposes did he study alchemy, and for what reasons did he conceal his findings?

How is it that a single man can innovate and revolutionize so many fundamental understandings of nature and of the spirit within a single lifetime?  Arguably, his intelligence exceeded those of any other living man, before or since.  It is my own observation that the spiritual world permeates all that is material.  It is this spiritual essence from which intelligence, and life itself, is empowered.

There is nothing mystical or fanciful in this subject whatever.  It is a fact of simple observation, which is easily proven to even the dimmest mind.

To wit: when an organism is killed or dies of natural causes, is it not the absence of an unseen force of animation that causes the transition from life to death?  Conversely, when a life form is borne it is the animation of the physical form by the non-physical force that we call life.

Anyone who has witnessed the death of a human body — as I have many times during my career as a criminal investigator — or who has attended the birth of a child or animal, cannot deny the phenomenon of that transition from inanimate object, into a living, breathing, self-motivating life form.

My personal quest for a spiritual elixir consumed many hours over many years. I did not concern myself with the possibility of negative consequences from my experiments.  The reward of success, for me, far outweighed the risk of deleterious effects upon my own person or mental state.  I suspect that Sir Isaac Newton shared my own insatiable passion for this science.

My own methods are always meticulous and thorough.  My observations upon the behavior of various chemical concoctions upon my own state, whether positive or negative, are equally meticulous.  With each self-administered dose I gained a more certain knowledge of the effects upon my own perception, ability, and understandings of life, and the universe.

To say that I had already succeeded in transcending the commonplace life of the “normal” citizens of Earth would be a gross understatement.  However, all states of existence can only be measured relative to similar states.  To this degree I deemed that a few of my experiments proved vastly more successful than others.  It was these upon which I focused my entire scientific attention in order that I might refine and improve upon them.  In my inmost heart I believed I could succeed where others failed.  Now that I found myself overwhelmed by this bizarre set of circumstances I had a new opportunity to test myself.

As a general rule I discovered that the effect of any chemical upon the human body serves only one, singular purpose:  to drive out or release the spirit from the body.  The spirit, the soul, the invisible animating essence of all life forms, is the true source of intelligence, awareness, ability and volition.  Indeed, life is not possible in the absence of it!

When driven or released from the constraints of a frail, tiny biological organism, such as the human body, I have observed that I, as a spiritual essence, can travel, perceive, understand and transcend the state of relative misery I experience when confined inside a body.

I frequently float about the room for hours, observing the microcosmic  minutia of every object within the room.  Likewise, I have, occasionally, traversed across half of the planet!  Lingering upon the towering peaks of storm blown mountains, floating across the burning desert sands — perceiving the intense heat without injury or discomfort — or quietly absorbing the moistness of moss upon the bark of magnificent redwood trees in the rugged Northwest.

This, I am certain, has been the prize sought by so many masters of mathematics, alchemy, philosophy and mysticism who have trod upon this lonely path.  The transmutation of base metals into precious metals has never been the goal of an accomplished alchemist!  What is mere gold compared to this?  What Earthly price can be placed upon the value of the soul?  What is a lifetime or two or twelve thousand spent in human pain, grief, disappointment and death, when compared to the possibility of a transcendent state of ability and awareness?

Indeed, so far as my experiments have revealed to me, there is no greater prize than realizing the full potential of subjective experience as a living spirit.  Unfortunately, the chemical syringe has been my only gateway through the portal of time, space and perception which lies between painful reality of the body, and the joy of freedom from it.  My personal adventure — the adventure of adventures,  the investigation of the highest order – has been to discover a safe and permanent transition between the reality of the flesh and the immortality of the soul.”

— Excerpt from Chapter 11 – Alchemical Solutions – from the book SHERLOCK HOLMES: MY LIFE, by Lawrence R. Spencer.

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SHARED UNIVERSES (Download FREE The Complete works of H.P. Lovecraft)

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Sherlock-Holmes-My-Life_cover300(Excerpt from a letter from Howard Lovecraft, to Sherlock Holmes)

“My Dear Mr. Holmes,

Word of your private and discreet investigations into alchemical investigation has reached me, vicariously, through a chain of referrals, culminating with your acquaintance, Arthur Conan Doyle.  I am an aspiring writer in America of which I am sure you have not heard.  Nonetheless, I am compelled to contact you in the off chance that you may find the enclosed information of interest.

I have developed several correspondences during my young life with other writers with whom I share an intense interest in all manner of scientific, metaphysical and pseudoscientific speculation.  Foremost among my correspondents are Clark Ashton Smith and Robert E. Howard, with whom I share a great enthusiasm and very modest income from writing fiction for pulp magazines in America, most notably “Weird Tales”.” — Excerpt from SHERLOCK HOLMES: MY LIFE by Lawrence R. Spencer

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Howard Phillips Lovecraft (August 20, 1890 – March 15, 1937) — known as H. P. Lovecraft — was an American author of horror, fantasy and science fiction, especially the subgenre known as weird fiction.  Lovecraft’s guiding aesthetic and philosophical principle was what he termed “cosmicism” or “cosmic horror”, the idea that life is incomprehensible to human minds and that the universe is fundamentally inimical to the interests of humankind. As such, his stories express a profound indifference to human beliefs and affairs. Lovecraft is best known for his Cthulhu Mythos story cycle and the Necronomicon, a fictional magical textbook of rites and forbidden lore.

The Cthulhu Mythos is a shared fictional universe.    A shared universe is a fictional universe to which more than one writer contributes. Works set in a shared universe share characters and other elements with varying degrees of consistency. Shared universes are contrasted with collaborative writing, in which multiple authors work on a single story. Shared universes are more common in fantasy and science fiction than in other genres. Examples include Star Trek, DC Universe, Marvel Universe, Star Wars, Forgotten Realms, Babylon 5, Foundation series, Dragonlance, Power Rangers, Man-Kzin Wars, and Cthulhu Mythos.  (from Wikipedia.org)