…..for many years I had a lot of shame framed around the fact that I went to Vietnam….I was a 19 year old boy in Oklahoma and had been court marshaled from the Navy Reserve for not attending meetings and taking certain liberties with the dress code…..I was certified for the draft and through the Grace of Existence I was magically drafted by mistake into the US Navy at the height of the Vietnam War…I was stationed at Moffett in Mountain View (35 Miles from Haight Ashbury) working in an office for a Patrol Squadron that was deployed to the Phillipines….I was in Vietnam for a total of three weeks…….stoned on some of the best pot that one can imagine…..the draft enabled me to get out of Oklahoma and that mind set and I was lucky to experience the psychedelic scene in the Haight due to my being stationed nearby…Being in and around San Francisco, I learned so much about the diversity of this planet that I was not exposed to in Oklahoma City…but at the same time….I did not have the guts to stand up against the war…I just knew that I did not want to kill another or die in battle…I have always glossed over that period of my life…only illuminating the psychedelic part…so today…on Memorial Day…I am totally out of the closet…I am not at all proud of my time in the service, however, I am no longer ashamed…I just did not know any better…I was culturally and geographicaly challenged…things have changed…I escaped Oklahoma…the World has opened up and I take refuge in an expanded Dharma…beyond War…beyond Religion…in the loving hands of Existence!
Michael Cull(Shakyamuni) says
Anado, you are the brightest Veteran of Bliss I ever met. Welcome Home to the space without shame and blame. I became a Vietnam Vet Against the war after 1968. I am living for four years in a beautiful city by the sea in Nha Trang Vietnam where served in 1966-67. The Vietnamese people taught me compassion and forgiveness with smiles and tears forever.
I know many friends who were soldiers from Hanoi that consider you a real hero for opposing the war. Our beloved Osho showed us the power of bliss and the magic of love.
I’m glad to share this Memorial Day with you my brother…..Love Shakyamuni
Jon Sievert says
You took liberties with the dress code? Hard to believe.
Many of us did our time in the military, especially those like me who were drafted early (1965) and those that refused were going to jail. Fortunately, I managed to get out of going to Viet Nam because a Sergeant Major I worked for liked me and wanted to keep me around. I saw more about war than I ever wanted to though when I did a three-month stint as a clerk at Fort Bragg’s Womack Military Hospital. When I got out in ’67 and moved to Massachusetts, I got very active in the anti-war movement.
Dan Webber says
I’ve known you many years but I never heard that story. Thanks for coming forward with your truth. I too was in the military (Army Security Agency) Am I proud of that? No, but neither am I ashamed. It was just a step in the journey – led me to the beautiful country of Turkey, the richness of Munich, and a growing awareness of an elementary queer spirit, All important to a little queer boy from Cowan, TN. It took a while for that spirit to grow and blossom BUT it did and you played a role in that journey.
Thank you old sage – Groove on!!!
I think bad things happen to good people, good things happen to bad people and some things just happen. Although it can take us all of our lives to work out “why” they happened (and perhaps we never do discover the answer), I’ve got no doubt that it’s all part of some cool and karmic master-plan. For that reason, maybe they’re not “good things” and “bad things” at all… maybe they’re just things.
I love the pic… could be right out of the pages of Vogue (if Vogue was a lot groovier than it actually is).
Beautiful post and beautiful comments. Peace, love, acceptance and the sublime and eternal groove.
Ruth Milikin says
Courage my love, you have it. Those were the times. I feared that my peers; my brother; and cousins would be drafted and fight in that war. I hated the politics but never the draftees or those who enlisted . From 67-71 I was active in the anti-war movement in the bay area. I marched at Peoples Park in Berkeley.I was nearly arrested at Berkeley, Oakland and other Bay area induction center protests where we held hands or locked arms to prevent the innocents assembled from officially entering the military. You did your duty then. There is no shame in that.I’m proud of you for acknowledging, and then transforming the experience now. You have freed your heart and made space for creative pursuits.
Lucinda Johnson says
Hey – it
´s why they recruit 18 year olds. Any older and people get too smart!!