By: Susan B. Martinez
Publisher: Bear & Company
Publication Date: March 2011
Reviewed by: Barbara Ardinger
Review date: May 5, 2011
This is one of the most idiosyncratic books you’re going to read before the planet (or culture or society) reboots next year. Derived from and filled with quotes from Oahspe, a book of scriptures channeled (by automatic typewriting) in 1881 by Dr. John Ballou Newbrough, founder of the modern Faithist movement, Time of the Quickening uses prophetic numbers to prove that the history of the planet and humankind moves not forward in a straight line of progress but in cycles. Oahspe (the title page of which is shown on page 19: it is “A New Bible in the Words of Jehovih [sic.] and His Angel Embassadors [sic. again], a Sacred History of the Dominions of the Higher and Lower Heavens of the Earth for the Past Twenty-Four Thousand years….”) gives us a table of prophetic numbers with funny names. An ode is 11 years. A spell, 33 years. A beast, 66 years. A wave, 99 years. A semoin, 120 years. A dan, 200 years. A tuff, 363 years. And on through 400, 666, 3,000, 12,000, 24,000, 72,000, 144,000, and 576,000 years.
Susan B. Martinez (one of whose previous works is a biography of Newbrough) leads the reader through the cycles of history by showing how if we add or subtract an ode or a spell or a beast or a tuff to a given year, we will discover similar events. As the channeled spirit of Abraham Lincoln said, “Events come and go in cycles…. History is a repetition of old themes with new variations” (pg. 29). “In our voyage of discovery,” Martinez writes, “we will unearth prophetic numbers for everything” from race riots, presidential deaths, the price of wheat, and wars to “political events, abundances of grasshoppers, economic cycles, religious milestones, censorship, witch hunts, immigration patterns, opposition movements, plagues, laws, prosperity, surges of imperialism, assassinations, treaties, scandals, fads, cycles of explorations, and philosophies” (pg. 33).
In Chapter 1, she shows how 1848, with its many revolutions, was the Kosmon, or the beginning of the modern era. In Chapter 2, she studies the attack on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. A tuff (363 years) earlier, in 1634, the Plymouth Pilgrims established America’s first military company, invaded an Indian fortress in the Connecticut Valley, and massacred everyone in it. Chapter 3 is about the United States of Amnesia (a term coined by Gore Vidal), or Guatama, “which is one of the most archaic names of America, known only to the Mt. Shasta Brotherhood … in the ‘grand plan’ … not to be thought of as a white nation but as a commonwealth for all” (pg. 97). The New World was predicted by the prophetic numbers … but something’s gone wrong here: Manifest Destiny happened, the USA became afflicted with amnesia, hubris, and narcissistic personality disorder. In Chapter 4, she discusses “this ole world” and refutes global warming. As a planet ages, it becomes colder and dryer. Our example? Earth’s “elder brother,” Mars. “Indeed, our medium-sized, middle-aged world is … losing moisture, radiance, and—yes—heat. By and by, as the daily rotation continually decelerates, the overall heat of the earth also begins to subside” (pg. 149). In Chapter 5, she writes about how the world’s religions—all of them, but especially Christianity with its raptures and end times—are likewise narcissistic. She also (finally) defines Quickening: which is “the opening of the ‘sixth sense,’ returning mankind to the all-embracing power of the unseen—the world of ether” (pg. 212). Chapter 6 is about the “new chosen people” who are doing “harmonious works of upliftment.” This group will reach critical mass in time for the Quickening. Chapter 7 describes the “new springtime” of community made up of all humanity, not races but one race. In Chapter 8, Martinez writes that cities and governments are filled with “drujes,” which are “the lowest order of discarnate life.” Cities are doomed. Finally, in Chapter 9, she writes, “Are you ready for 2013?” Actually by adding and subtracting and using multiples of the prophetic numbers, she calculates that the true Quickening will occur in 2150, give or take a few years.
Quill says: Don’t worry about the funny names for the numbers. Consider the concept of cycles and the generally optimistic tone of the book. What dies is quickened and reborn in a new form and to a new life.