Goodbye Ken Carey

ken-careyThis picture to the right is the Ken Carey I knew. I found it on the internet so I could show you what he looked like and because I have no pictures of him. I think he didn’t wanted his picture be taken, lest his privacy be in danger. At least that is what I think of him; and I respected his wishes. Several times during our relationship I asked him if I could interview him, be it just a sound recording or video. He declined both. I wanted him to come to our fellowship group to meet some of my other friends, because I found him interesting and different enough that I believe our group would see him as fascinating as I did. He said that meeting strangers in a group setting made him anxious and he couldn’t concentrate, so I stopped asking him.

carey-kenThis picture (both pictures are credited to manataka.org) on the left is the Ken Carey I never knew. He moved from the big city to a large isolated farm in South Central Missouri, with no electricity or running water. He wrote books geared to the revitalized New-Age set of the 90’s. You can find a plethora of articles about him and written by him on sites like: churchofthecosmos, ascensionnow, theearthplan, lightparty, and many other independent bloggers. His farm, he told me, was one of those locations on the earth that had a strong spiritual pull given by the thinness of the divide between our reality and the supernatural reality; which is why he chose to move his family there. He talked about a school being on the property and I’m not even sure it was for his family exclusively, which was atypically large, or open to other families of similar thoughts and insights.

I respected his wishes for privacy, until now. If you haven’t guessed, Ken died, a week and a half or so ago. You see, his body was discovered on Thursday and may have been there a few days. He lived alone in a cold concrete apartment dwelling for people of a more mature type. I wasn’t even going to write this article (maybe), if I had been able to attend his funeral. As far as I know, he didn’t have one. He was estranged from his family. His family divided, his wife no longer needing him, had deserted him for the most part. He attempted reconciliation, in fact several months ago, Ken was elated at the possibility that his wife may allow him back on the farm to live in a building not connected to the main house. He just wanted to be on the farm.

Since the discovery of his body, I have been searching for anything posted about him or a ceremony, celebrating his life, for I wanted to be there. Being in the New Age movement and raising his kids that way would make me think that peace and love reigned among them, and any difficulty in relationship would be resolved almost immediately, perhaps superficially though in his death.

I need closure with Ken and I am not finding it. So, this is my closure: exposing my friend and telling the world that they no longer need to wonder at his location, because I know where he is. Ken is in heaven, with the ultimate love of his life, Jesus Christ. Not Jesus Christ as some mystical, universal, in the trees sort of being I imagine New Agers commit to, but the real Jesus. Jesus Christ, born, lived, died on a cross for all our sins, raised from the dead, forever with the Father, eternal grace, peace, joy and love; that is the Jesus Ken knew. Ken understood Jesus in a way most traditional Christians would shun. His verbiage uses a broad brush of love and universality so uncommon to our ears. Most Christians struggle with their own personal life; the latest verse to memorize, people at work, money for a new mower, that sort of thing. Ken struggled with the idea of love and the fulfilling of everything lovely in Jesus Christ. He was a Christian, but I’m not even sure if he would be satisfied with those words. To him it was more than a title, even more than a way of life. It was allness, everything and nothing in the sense that you couldn’t touch or measure love, it was just you, surrounded by Him and His love.

It is hard for me to explain, as I am not fully sure his vision of what he was. I live by terms and definitions that he didn’t want to be bogged down by.

One day I brought Ken to our home so we could buy some books for him off Amazon.com. He wanted a three different Bibles: one he could read, one he could study, and one he could read to his grandchildren. He was so excited to have a children’s Bible to read to his grandchildren; connecting with his grandchildren was very important. The other books were important too. He couldn’t wait. So when I got them I brought them right to him, even though he said he could wait until the next Sunday to have them. He also wanted a cover for the one he would just read from. I never got it for him.

He had asked that if I had the time, could I bring him to one of his grandson’s baseball games last summer. For me it was an honor and privilege. The drive was just a little over an hour, and I had exclusive time to have a conversation with him. It was during that drive that I really knew that he knew God, in his own unique way. The fact that I disagreed with a lot he was saying on the dark ride home, trying to understand him, and that we still were good friends is a testament to God and His sovereignty in bringing him in my life. I can still picture the ride home, for in the dark, foggy, summer night, is when he introduced me to his concept of spiritually strong places on earth. He told me that night that when he went out on his book tours, a special place in his heart was Salt Lake City. I was confused because when I imagine Salt Lake as if there were spiritual forces there, they are dark and deceitful. He told me that it wasn’t evil or good per se, but it is all in how people take it, or absorb it, or use it. Even though Salt Lake, to a Christian’s understanding, is a dark place that needs light, Ken saw it as a stronghold for spiritual use, be it Love or otherwise. It wasn’t to be what the entirety of culture says it was, but what you say it is.

I understood what Ken was saying from the biblical account of places being swept of demons and if locations aren’t filled with otherwise, demons may fill it again. Most Christians would be shocked at Ken’s view, but I loved it. Loved that I could tell him I thought he was wrong and him fine with that but still struggling to help me see his view.

The first time I had a really serious discussion with him, he told me about his book writing and some of what he understood the world to be, and I thought he was a little… over the hedge, you might say. But my commitment to my philosophy regarding relationship and growing in our experience by whom you know, kept me coming back to him. It was quickly not just an experiment in patience, for I soon came to love Ken.

Ken was unwilling to say that he wanted me to read his books because I think in some way he understood who he was, was not who he is. His viewpoint in writing his previous works to him was a fulfillment in really understanding Christ. Much as I saw Catholicism as a step toward fully knowing Him, Ken saw his writing as the journey with the culmination of fully knowing Him. He wanted to write a final book, fully revealing what he now believed. In fact, a mutual friend thinks that it may have been mostly completed, but may be lost due to his family taking over what little there was left of Ken’s possessions. Which is the final reason I’m here. I hope that those who seek more from Ken in his writings of the past will completely understand who Ken came to be: a Bible believing Christian. Not going with the grain of traditional American Christianity as most unchurched people see us, but in Ken’s own version, influenced by his universal spiritualism, but no less devoted to the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Exclusive to a fault, and fully embracing the universal Love that only God can comprehend in the totality of who He is.

Some see in a brighter mirror than others.

The one time I was afraid for Ken, was when our youth group brought him to McDonald’s. Our group is slightly misnamed as a Widow’s Ministry. We do service projects for some people who aren’t widows, and meet with others who just need or enjoy a simple visit. We picked up Ken, our noisy group, and brought him to the restaurant, bought fries and drinks aplenty. There was so much noise and confusion I thought Ken would, maybe go a little crazy. But the whole time he sat there with a smile on his face and participating in the conversation. He brought that up at church several times after that, saying how honored he felt. It seemed to him to be a celebration for him. He felt special, even though all the conversation around him wasn’t to him or about him, the fact that being there felt energizing, and loving.

That is how I want to remember Ken. Smiling at the privilege of being among the chaos of youth. It is a beautiful picture of what the world should be… at least how the Church should be.

Good bye Ken Carey. We’ll see you soon!

 

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14 Responses to Goodbye Ken Carey

  1. Andrea DeLeo says:

    Hi Mark, I don’t know if you will even see this but I want to thank you for this article on Ken Carey. I have wondered what ever happened to him, The Third Millennium was the most beautiful book I’ve ever read and to hear about his tragic death was very sad but yet we know he’s with Jesus so I guess it’s all good in the end. Thank you so much, you are a very talented writer! Andrea

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mark Mayo says:

      I’m glad this reached someone who knew Ken. Thank you for reading and replying, as well as the commentary. Ken was a good man touched by a lot of people and it was sad to me that he disappeared so quietly.

      Like

  2. urastarseed says:

    Thank you Marc for this message!
    I used to discuss with Ken on his blog in 2012 and wondered what happened to him. He was and is a wonderful man.
    Much love to your family and you.
    God bless you

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lisa Gawlas says:

    I just wanted to say thank you Mark, for letting us who love ken’s writings, as well as the man such amazing material came thru, has crossed. I still give a shout out to his books and quote him thru my own sharings.

    I am just finding out today (someone emailed me your blog) it breaks my heart that he left this plane so alone, but perhaps, he knew all that read and appreciated his writings, took up a place of love in his heart.

    Anywayz, thank you so very much!! ❤
    Lisa

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Tom says:

    Ken Carey’s books are so beautifully written and his vision of the origin, fall and future of humanity never stopped fascinating me. Having read his books, it was incredible to participate in discussions on his blog in 2011-2012. At Christmas 2013 he sent an email to me and a number of other people in which he said he was having new visions and writing a new book. I haven’t heard from him since. I was hoping his new book would get published some day.

    God bless his gentle soul.

    Liked by 1 person

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  6. Joan Sawyer says:

    I had the honor of hosting Ken Carey in Madison Wisconsin for a talk when his book Flat Rock Journal came out, in 1994. When I think about it now, I realize it must have been a stretch for him, traveling around the country promoting his book. He came in his motor home and stayed in an RV Park. He was a quiet, thoughtful man. He was kind and generous with his time. He met my entire family and even had dinner with us. That period was a remarkable time in my life and I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to meet him. May he rest in peace and find joy in his new state of being and joy in his new work. Joanie

    Like

  7. Naomi Cummings says:

    I too also really appreciate this piece because Ken’s whereabouts have been a mystery to me for quite some time. The last thing I remember was a newsletter appeal asking if anyone could offer him a place (in weather more suitable for his health) to stay. Delighted to hear he was able to spend time with his grandchildren and that his faith was unwavering. Profoundly grateful for your sharing this and still definitely a bit surprised and curious that a more widespread acknowledgment of his life and passing cannot be found on the internet. “Third Millennium” is pretty much my most favorite book of all time. I re-read it every couple of years and it never fails to raise my consciousness to one that resonates with the loving and blissful vibrations of truth.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Veronica says:

    Thank you sooo much for posting this. I’ve wondered for years what became of Ken Carey. I loved his books. I heard an audio recording of him, and his sweet, gentle energy was very evident. Do you know his date of birth and date of death? I want to know how long he graced this planet.

    Like

  9. I’ve been searching the net for Ken for years. I ‘ve lived in salt lake city for 35 years. I read his books in the 80s, and every page was absolute truth to me. And of course, they had that familar ring of truth to them. I loved his style of writing bringing ancient and future ideas into view.
    I had no idea that he loved salt lake city so. I saw him 1994 I believe. It was the day of his 25th wedding anniversary and he was in town giving a talk about his work. I of course still have the book he signed for me. I hope his wife and children and you are doing well. He had a profound influence on me and brought an abiding clarification of the long view. The eye of the soul is the will. When your eye is single, it is I who am present. I looked forward to 2012 for so many years.
    The world is different now, all all tied to the internet.
    Thank you for reaching out and posting.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Pingback: Goodbye Ken Carey, A Follow Up | Undeniably Mayo

  11. Chief Cowpie says:

    Mark Mayo has done an excellent summary of our beloved friend Ken Carey’s final days incarnate. A few things he did not have enough information on, I can fill in. First of all, Ken Carey was not alone ar the time of his passing but was in the accompaniment of more angels than there are grains of sand at all the world’s beaches plus one special superstar, Lord Jesus Christ. Also, those seemingly cold cinder blocks which made up the residence of his final domicile were overcome with emotion at the passing of this great soul and we’re shedding tears.

    As for Ken’s nervousness with public appearances, I myself would much rather hear Ken stammer and bumble barely getting a word out than to hear most new agers wax confidently and proudly on such subjects. Ken was real, authentic and a shining light of love. Ken also could have been one of the many rock stars of the new age but as we hear from Mark Mayo’s personal account, chose the Rock of Ages instead.

    Thank you Mark for your sharing,

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Chief Cowpie says:

    And thank you for the Widow’s Ministry. My Grandfather, The Reverend George McKinley had a similar project.

    I grew up in a small town along the Appalachian Blue Ridge Mountains.

    My Grandfather was a minister in one of the town’s churches.

    Because he was a minister in the Church, in the innocence of childhood, I thought he was able to talk to God.

    Times remembered seemed to be not so much about his ability to talk to God but his ability to talk to me.

    Later on I learned the truth that because someone is a minister or preacher, it does not necessarily mean they can talk to God.

    My Grandfather’s favorite pastime was to go to the local hospital and visit the sick and whether he knew them or not, just simply talk and chat.

    Years later to this this day, I have met complete strangers who have told me of my Grandfather’s visits and how he was a warm, loving and kind person and seemingly dissolved the pain.

    And now I know, my Grandfather was talking to God.

    Like

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