This is the second interview I did with Richard Marshall. The first appears at
KerryThornley.com and in issue seven of the Discordian magazine Intermittens
available for free HERE (intermittens.org was down the last time we checked).
Marshall was friends with some of the founders of the Discordian religion and other
revolutionaries of the 1960s and 1970s. In this interview, he focuses on Kerry
Thornley aka Lord Omar Khayyam Ravenhurst and some on Greg Hill aka
Malaclypse the Younger; President John F. Kennedy's assassination and how
District Attorney Jim Garrison linked Thornley to it; the original jokes behind the
peace sign and the peace symbol and the number 5; and Minnie Rae, the
Discordian saint prostitute who may have been the model for Peter Pan's Wendy.
To clarify some points that were not clear in the interview, I have added notes in
HILDE: Thanks for giving me a second interview.
MARSHALL: Well, the first one didn't come out too bad.
HILDE: You still want me to call you Marshall, right?
MARSHALL: Sure, Hilde.
HILDE: Or do you want to tell me your Erisian name?
MARSHALL. No. So you're getting a degree in journalism?
HILDE: I'm trying to, but it's hard with a daughter who's a toddler and a sother
who's in the military and overseas a lot. But I'm not the one being interviewed. As
I'm doing this for the KerryThornley.com website, I'd like to focus on Kerry Thornley.
MARSHALL: What about him?
HILDE: Did you know him when you were children? Or in the Marines?
MARSHALL: No, I wasn't in the Marines, although I have a grandson who is. But
let's not get personal; I'm not here to talk about me. I knew him later.
HILDE: What was Kerry Thornley like?
MARSHALL: It's almost easier to say what he wasn't like. He wasn't stupid, he
wasn't predictable, and he wasn't practical. And he definitely did not follow the
crowd. Whichever way they were headed, he'd be going in a different direction. Not
the opposite, but at some weird angle or other. He might be an atheist, or an
objectivist, an anarchist one day and a Buddhist the next. I think he re-invented
HILDE: I believe he coined the term "neo-paganism."
MARSHALL: That's Thornley, making a new form of something that was forgotten
so nobody knew what the original was. Like neo-classicism, I guess. He wasn't one
for following the rules.
HILDE: Do you know where the Law of Fives came from? ("The Law of Fives states
simply that: ALL THINGS HAPPEN IN FIVES, OR ARE DIVISIBLE BY OR ARE
MULTIPLES OF FIVE, OR ARE SOMEHOW DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY
APPROPRIATE TO 5. The Law of Fives is never wrong." --Principia
MARSHALL: No. Nobody does, really. It's about subjectivity; you can see whatever
you want to see even if it's complete nonsense. I think for Hill it was 5 because that
made fun of the Pentagon, the five-sided temple of military intelligence, and the
five Greek elements. For Thornley, it was more the first five books of the Bible,
the--what do you call them?
HILDE: The Torah?
MARSHALL: The Books of the Law, The Penta-something. (The books are called
the Pentateuch, which literally means "five books."--P.H.) The Laws of Moses, the
foundation for the rules of western civilization. It's also five fingers on two hands,
two tablets with five commandments each to make the Ten Commandments, the
controlling hands not of God, but of man. Then Thornley spends the end of his life
in Little Five Points; synchronicity.
HILDE: That's in Georgia, right?
MARSHALL: Little Five Points is to Atlanta, Georgia, what Haight Ashbury was to
San Francisco, and what Greenwich Village is--was--to New York. But it wasn't
then, back in the 60s. It was a dying town when they were working on Principia
Discordia, businesses going out of business, theaters closing, street drugs and
prostitution and crime, a few new people moving in, a lot of old people moving
out--it was integration, and proud high-and-mighty white folks didn't take to those
blacks moving in. Of course they called them something other than "blacks."
But Thornley saw back in the 60s and 70s what it was going to be. Remember he
said Little Five Points would be the new Greenwich Village. He was right; it's now a
place of hippies and bikers and artists. But the Village changed. Now it's slowly
getting more like the Village in The Prisoner, and so's The Village Voice.
HILDE: The Village Voice?
MARSHALL: You don't know The Village Voice? And you're studying journalism?
It's a newspaper in Greenwich Village, used to be an alternative newspaper for arts
and cultures and free speech, but got bought by some big conglomerate a few
years back. Greenwich Village is still liberal, but it hasn't been bohemian for
decades; it's Yuppie town now, liberal but rich.
The Village Voice in The Prisoner really was a voice, a woman who announced the
"good news" that everyone listened to. The Village is run by Number One who's a
supposedly benign but controlling figure like Nineteen Eighty-Four's Big Brother,
and like Big Brother you never really see him. Patrick McGoohan had a lot of
Discordian and Illuminati references in that show. And there's several references
to John Drake, McGoohan's character, in Illuminatus. (The Illuminatus! Trilogy,
which talks a lot about Discordianism, was written by Robert Shea and Robert
This is kerry thornley dot com, a site about kerry wendell thornley aka lord omar khayyam ravenhurst, co-conspirator with gregory hill aka greg hill aka
malaclypse the younger, contributor to principia discordia, worker on operation mindfuck, investigated by im garrison, friend of robert anton wilson and
robert shea, supposed co-assassin of president john f. kennedy, and fnord
|An Interview with Richard Marshall
November 23, 2009
by Pope Hilde
|This is part A of the second of a series of three interviews with
original Erisian Richard Marshall conducted by Pope Hilde.
We have them all.