Only Human(e) On The Inside


By Noah Michelson

So you see pandrogyny as the beginning --
The beginning of everything! Ultimate flexibility of choice.

And you have a manifesto you've written up?
We have some -- but we need to catch up because it's teaching us as we go. And now of course we have this body -- we're trying to learn to say we because this body represents me and Lady Jaye in the material world and she represents us in the immaterial world. So we have two zones going on at the same time. And we are to some degree communicating, which is very bizarre, because I grew up a skeptical existentialist.

This reminds me of what you've been trying to with your music, with your politics, with your interest in magick and ritual. You've always been trying to -- for lack of a better phrase -- fuck stuff up.
[Laughs] At least that's what I'm told.

I can see a line running through your life and what you've been interested in. But you feel like this -- pandrogyny -- is the project that you're here to accomplish?
Yes. I used to say to Jaye, 'I wish I'd met you when I was 15 and hadn't had to wait 30 years to meet you,' and she would say, 'Oh no. You had to be ready for me -- you wouldn't have been ready for me and I wouldn't have been ready for you.' And she was so right. She was an amazingly wise and very angelic in a non-New Age kind of way. Everyone I've met who knew Jaye from all walks of life adored her instantly. She was a nurse by trade and she didn't just nurse she worked with chronically sick babies -- the hardest of all -- babies that will never ever recover. Babies born without a brain -- things like that. And she would take them and she'd have to deal with the family too and say, 'It's not your fault. You aren't guilty. This isn't because God is punishing you.' We saw how people respond to her. Even the plastic surgeon cried when he heard what had happened to her. She had such an incredible impact on people.

I heard you've been in contact with Jaye.
Oh yes. This requires a reenactment. Follow me. [Leaves the bedroom and goes into the living room.] She died on October the 9th as I held her in my arms right in there [points to the kitchen]. She died on the floor there and she breathed her last breath into my mouth which was very intense. Anyway, there used to be this '60s furniture here in the living room and I was sitting here and the kids [Genesis has 2 children from a previous marriage] had come up for the funeral and they were trying to persuade me to go back to California with them just for a few weeks to get used to the shock and I was saying, 'I don't know if I really want to go. I want to stay here with Jaye. I feel like Jaye is still here. But if I go I want to at least have a picture of Jaye of with me.' So we went to our bedroom and took a picture off 'the kissing wall' which is a wall filled with pictures of Jaye and I kissing. So we picked this one which is in Kathmandu which is her favorite place that I ever took her and looking at it now I realize the way we're sitting -- it's like one body with two heads -- it's the pandrogyne but I wasn't conscious that I picked it out. So we bring it in and put it on the windowsill and they're all trying to tell me why I should go to California and I say, 'I just don't know. What do you think Jaye would want me to do?' Six adults were here and they all saw the picture lift up, hover over eight feet, and land at my feet. And I just took that to mean that she wanted me to stay here with her. And everybody else just went, 'Did you see that?' 'Yeah, I can't believe I just saw that.' 'This picture just flew across the room!' 'Oh my God!' 'Oh fuck!' It was so strange, but beautiful. So that was it for me. I said, 'OK -- I'm staying here, bunny.'

What about since then?
Looking back it's struck me that since Jaye has dropped her body, my approach to photos and photo shoots is completely different. All of a sudden I respond to the camera really well! Before I would just look at the camera like [lets body go slack and makes an emotionless face].

And Jaye is responsible for the change?
Jaye is using my body and manipulating me like a marionette in a really positive way.

So you enjoy it?
Oh God, yeah! But I go into this weird trance. It's not me.

You have no control over your body?
Nope. Jaye takes over. I even say a little invocation at the beginning every time: This is my body but it's also your body. These are your hands; you can use them as you wish. These are your eyes, the stained glassed windows of your temple and you can see through them as you wish. You can use me in any way that you choose. Occupy me, possess me, or manipulate me -- it's all fine. I'm yours. And then we do the film or the photo shoot and it's so different what comes through! People have even said, 'It doesn't even look like you! It looks like Jaye! That's a Jaye pose!' And none of it's conscious. Obviously we're wearing her clothes and that makes a difference too.

Does she have plans for what she wants you to do next?
She has sent some messages, yes. She said that in late October the American economy is going to really start to crash. Early next year property is going to become a really big issue. She told me to sell the house as soon as possible and try and get some land in India, try and get some land in the country and tell people to get out of the cities. And she said we should start to collaborate and share and make small, chosen families that help each other survive. Because if you there are six of you or four of you and one of you has a house in Goa and one has an apartment in the Lower East Side and one of you has a house in Louisiana and another one of you has a house in Wales, you live like millionaires by sharing the keys and you can travel to all these different places whenever you feel like it for the price of an airplane ticket. It's so simple if you just trust each other. And I've lived in communes all my life. My home has always been a commune in one way or another -- there are always extra people sleeping on the sofa or down the hall. To me that's the natural state of human beings -- you choose your family, you choose your tribe. That's the one thing besides the body not being sacred -- please get over thinking you have to love everyone who is linked to you through blood and genetics because you don't need to love them all -- some of them are assholes!

I think that gay people and trans people have learned that already. You have to build your own family because so often your family won't be there for you.
Exactly. And that's why they're so much better at taking care of their communities. They've led the way for self-fulfilling communities. They've had to.

Have you met anyone else who is journeying towards pandrogyny?
Yes. It's strange too because one of our friends who lives in New Mexico used to work with John Lilly, the man that the film Altered States is based on. John Lilly did loads of experiments with Ketamine in sensory deprivation tanks and he went into cross-dressing and then he started to take hormones to have breasts and started to become pandrogynous. So did our friend. So did Jaye and I. It seems that Ketamine is a portal to a pandrogynous perception of the world.

It unlocks something?
It unlocks a sort of a neurological blockage about gender and identity. There are a few of us. It's happening very slowly, here and there. It was really Jaye who really made it happen. She was one of those people who goes 'Yeah, let's!' There's me who's always trying to persuade people, like, 'What if we tried this? Or maybe we should do that,' and Jaye is just 'Let's do it NOW! And why don't we do this as well?' It was just amazing to have someone who was constantly reinforcing and accelerating and never, ever holding back.

Has her passing made you think differently about spirituality or death?
It's definitely confused me. There's a part of one that thinks there's no sense to this planet and the way that human beings behave. As Jaye used to say, 'Door #1 -- that's oblivion,' -- you know, existentialism -- it's just a big fuckin' exit and we deserve to go. [Laughs] The dinosaurs came and went and we'll come and go. Something else will come and go. The planet will continue. We're not that important, which is a shame -- because we could be. So door #1 is oblivion but there's not a lot of exploring to do with that -- that's it. So why not look for door #2 and door #3 and at the very least conceptualize them because you might as well do that. It's more constructive. Other ideas, other ways of seeing will come from that. People will learn to behave differently towards things that surprise them. Novelty might become less frightening to people. Collaboration might suddenly become something really joyous. People might remember celebration again -- wouldn't that be nice? Which is what we try to do with our live show of course. She taught me to always be looking for more -- more perceptions. There's always another way to see it, another direction to look from. Having met enough Tibetan Buddhists who reincarnated, I'm pretty sure they can maintain the individual self while not in a body. That's mind boggling! And then when you think that they've spent several tens of thousands of years in the most inhospitable environment on the planet just focusing on meditating to try and understand conscious -- of course they're way ahead of us. If only the world planned itself like that everywhere! What a change! We would have this endless renaissance of people thinking of options and possibilities and impossibilities and we could become finally proud to become human beings. Humane beings as we like to say. We put an e on the end for evolution. So it's gone from this beautiful romance, which it still is -- as you can see -- to something that's about a genuine altruistic desire to watch the human species live up to it's possibilities.

It's become bigger than you now.
This entire Pandora's box of options and possibilities and implications that neither of us noticed at the beginning because we were just madly in love -- and still are.

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