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Argusto Emfazie

Argusto Emfazie III (born February 6, 1954) was born to Maria Meleta and Argusto Emfazie Jr., and raised in a strict Catholic background for the first nine years of his life. He spent his time in a small home in Paramus, New Jersey. However, in the summer of 1963, Argusto's mother died in a car accident. Argusto's father, suffering from the loss, rejected his religion, and instructed his son to do the same. This was to become the instrumental event in Argusto's life.

Exactly three years after the death of his mother, Argusto had what he considers to be his first mystical experience. The twelve-year-old, often left alone by his father after the accident, was wandering through a supermarket, when a strange man cried "Shed no tears!" and bumped into him, knocking him into a display. When Argusto looked up from the mess, the strange man was nowhere to be seen, so he turned to the scattered display. His attention was immediately caught by three cans in particular that had rolled away from the majority of the mess. The display was one of crushed tomatoes, and the arrangement of those three cans spelled out the word "Shed a tear" (the brand name is unknown, but many speculate it was Farmer Beard's, a brand popular during the time period that would also account for the configuration).

From then on, young Argusto began studying the mysteries of the occult. He began to read many late-nineteenth-century occultists, and began speaking in their fashion at the age of 14, giving him a reputation for overly fanciful speech. Incidents similar to the one in the supermarket became a common occurrence in Argusto's life.

Argusto's first published work in 1973 was a book of poems titled Eagle Blocking Sun. Most critics met his initial work with frowns, calling it awkward and overly grandiose. However, in late 1974 he published A Hand of Clay, a poem calling spiritual and sexual revolution far more important than political revolution. This piece was well-received in the small crowds it reached. In it, Emfazie first began developing his ideas that would later come out full in his last and greatest book, The Remercie Por Grazie.

In 1979, Argusto had his most famous moment, though it was one choked with embarrassment. He had often spoken of the 1967 "Exorcism" of the Pentagon to be "the Greatest political move, albeit on Spiritual Grounds, in two centuries." (Afterword to A Hand of Clay). In 1979, he attempted to repeat the process. He spent two months attempting to rally enough people to surround the Pentagon. When the sad date was finally met, on a hot August day, the group barely broke fifty people. About twenty more left within an hour. Argusto led the small group in prayer and meditation, but the event was generally looked down upon as a failure - even Young Radical Press, an underground magazine that had been one of the few to print Argusto's call, made a joke out of the small and silent protest.

Between 1979 and 1998, Argusto sank into obscurity. Shattered by his failure in 1979, he published only a few essays, and refrained from calling attention to himself. He lived alone in Benington, Vermont, bouncing from job to job for almost twenty years.

In 1998, Argusto published The Remercie Por Grazie, a biography that promotes mysticism and the occult purely for the sake of mysticism and the occult. Though most critics treated the book as a joke, it received somewhat of a cult following a few months after its initial public exposure. However, most critics agreed that Argusto finally gained the necessary maturity to his writing that his earlier works lacked. In this work he goes into his life between the ages of fourteen and seventeen:

"Simple coincidences were more than mere coincidence for me! One would think stumbling in the street, only to find a quarter, be no act of significance. However, (and let it be known that I speak the truth!) of every time this happened, I found myself staring at a quarter made in the year of 1966 - the very year that began my enlightenment! Whether thou chooseth to believe me or not, 'tis of no great importance to myself, but I was able to collect four and a quarter dollars in the year of 1969 alone in this manner."

"Emfazie's Hand of Clay had the subject matter down - it was truly an empassioned plea, perfect for the times. Unfortunately, the 44-year old's ideas have only grown more fantastic with time. Luckily, this has been balanced with a significant improvement in his writing... ...The Remercie Por Grazie was published thirty years too late. In 1968, his views towards spiritualism and his over-the-top writing style would have been embraced... Now, his 'masterpiece' will be confined to only a slice of the exposure it deserves." (Jeremy Delomite, Doughton Review)

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