Yancey Gates: A Dialogue With Self

Yancey Gates: A Dialogue With Self

by Arthur Telling


Publisher CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Published in Literature & Fiction/Metaphysical, Self-Help/Spiritual, Literature & Fiction

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Book Description


Yancey Gates seeks enlightenment, while enduring a mundane job plagued with office politics at the San Francisco Planning Department. Opportunity arises when a dynamic new California governor proposes a world’s fair in San Francisco having a spiritual theme. Yancey’s job in Planning takes on new life as the governor’s plan drops into his lap, and carries him to a Northern California Buddhist monastery where present moment awareness is a way of life, and to a fiery American Indian chieftain whose distrust of the White Man threatens the governor’s plan.

Sample Chapter


Yancey Gates is a fictitious character, yet he is not so much unlike you and I; an imaginary figure, yes, but so are we. Our existence is not so much more real than that of our soon to be friend Yancey’s. We are energy; our identity a mental construct no more real than words on a page. Our minds form the images, symbols, words, that surround us in both dreaming and in waking.

You are about to go on a journey with Yancey, a seeming ordinary man who sees that it is not enough to live a life knowing he will die, going through the pleasures and joys and the pains and sorrows, to one day disappear into the abyss, knowing not what it is. He wants to know, he’s found a path, and he will lead you down it.


I’m not like others. I spend time wondering who I am, where I’m going, why I am here in this world, on this land, in this place, here right now. And contrary to the conventional wisdom there are answers. Yes, they’re here if we look, and search, and wonder, and think. Other societies know things that our society deems demented; a lifetime goal for Buddhists, Hindus too, and these crazy New Age gurus of whom I’m leery but they are at least searching.

It didn’t come quickly, but it did come, just as day follows night. Young and dumb, I had just left the Army, my former friends all married. I didn’t know at the time it was to be the beginning of my knowledge quest. I make friends, but not easily. I snagged a job that I hated, had no friends, I hated living; everything fine otherwise (that's a joke).

You look around, you see misery. What’s the point? People pretend, they go around making believe, as though they’re happy, but they’re really miserable. Why? There is no reason, no reason for anything; no reason to live, no reason to die. All is futile, making small-talk, watching sports games that amount to nothing except for the corporate sponsor who makes the cash. And he’s not happy, he just imagines he is and doesn’t know the difference. But that was then, it’s been several decades, I’m at peace, happy now, for I know where I am and where I am going. I would like to share this; I'm writing a book – this book.

You go from one identity to another; you live, you die, then you wonder what the hell just happened and what the hell it was all for, then you're pulled by your desires into another body, a new identity, and here's where you actually "die", but you don't actually die, you lose your memory. Why? Because you weren't able to handle it, you went crazy if not during your physical life then right after when you realize you just died. I've studied this, it's the nature of things, it's what it is. Asians call it reincarnation, that's a nasty word to the so-called educated. But it is quite simple. Call it a soul, I call it awareness, the part of us that is cognizant and decides things, the "us" part of us; this part of us doesn't die, only the outer form does, only the outer garment. It was our identity, but the curtain is opened and we see through the narrative, we were play-acting, following a script that we more or less write as we live. I'm Yancey, that's where I began this life and where my former identity fell away. I began this life as Yancey, Yancey Gates, and forty-seven years later I'm still Yancey Gates, and I'll be Yancey Gates another thirty years perhaps, and then poor Yancey will begin to fall away, decaying until some part within him fails completely and he dies. I'll be in that new world, where I'm dead, Yancey no more. But I know enough now so that I can expect to maneuver about, knowing I 'm not really Yancey; he's dead, I'm not, that's how it will be. And I know quite a bit now about the choices I can make then, returning to a new identity or move on to an entirely different system. I'm inclined to pick the latter.

I didn't know all this at first but I did have a sense that there was no easy way out. We're here in this world with all its problems for a reason, and that, exactly, is what we need to be working on while we are here -- our various problems. At just twenty-two years old life had passed me by already, or so I thought; it was an illusion, a sucker trap; life for me was really not even yet starting; that would come about a decade or two later. A whole life was awaiting me but I didn't know, I thought it was over.

I suppose for most of us the Bible will mark the starting point; it did for me, and I had felt it was all silliness, and God knows, maybe it is, but it was the only thing offering something other than certain death, and if it seemed crazy then how crazy is it to be doing things in expectation that your life will never end all the while knowing it will, with certainty! This book that says it won’t end; also says we’ll get our just rewards, not from the world, from God. But what is God? Say we go to “paradise” when we die, or to be with the damned; what does that mean? What is paradise, why would we go there, what would we do there? Why would “God” even care? Too many questions; no answers. I kept searching.

I landed in Berkeley, in the East Bay across from San Francisco. I had dropped out, not working, and was living in an old van. It wasn’t bad, and I was mobile, I could go anywhere, just so my bank account held out. Cody’s bookstore near the UC campus; I searched the religion section, next to the metaphysics area, and bingo, I found what I’m looking for spelled out in plain language, and by numerous authors. The better authors are not alive or even dead; they are in the very world I was searching for, they are spirits, gestalt awareness, and they are explaining the whole thing to anyone willing to read it. This was the big breakthrough and right there on the shelves of a major bookstore. For the next several years I buried myself in these books. Now, these invisible people write the books as I said, but for that to happen they enlist help from people living in this world, through various different means, such as automatic writing and dream communication. I soon found a whole area of the bookstore dedicated to material that comes from the mouths of spirits of whom most of us cannot see or hear. Well it’s true.


Excerpted from "Yancey Gates: A Dialogue With Self" by Arthur Telling. Copyright © 2017 by Arthur Telling. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Arthur Telling

Arthur Telling

Arthur Telling has written numerous stories and articles on religion, philosophy, and metaphysics, and has authored several books. His articles are regularly appearing in online magazine including August 2016-B issue “’Son of Man’ May Not Have Been Jesus”. His article, “A Different Jesus Message” was published in the Nov. 2011 AMORC online Rosicrucian Digest. His Article answering the question "How are the mind and brain related?" appeared in January/February 2008 edition of British Journal Philosophy Now. His website is:

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