We interacted mostly as organic gardeners – more on that later. I respected his work as a District Judge. He helped protect poor and minority students by ruling that the suit-boys method of funding public schools was inherently discriminatory. A great number of people owe an improved education to Harley.
The pack media wrote the same obituary over and over again about how Harley originated the Hook Em Horns sign – true but the origins are much deeper. When we talked about that day in 1955, I always thought Harley had channeled some prehistoric shamanistic ancestor to convince tens of thousands of rabid but yahoo Longhorn fans to invoke one of the world’s oldest signs to ward off evil.
Our Hook Em Horns sign goes back at least to the time of the Buddha. The Karana Mudra (a sign or symbol) was used to expel demons or remove obstacles and negative thoughts. Early Christians are pictured using the sign. Chaac, the Mayan Rain God used the sign to produce lighting and create thunderstorms. In Italy, during the time of the plague, the Horn sign was used to ward off the disease and the evil eye. I’m also including an interesting depiction of a hierophant (an intermediary and interpreter of the sacred world) using the sign Harley passed on.
Recently this ancient sign was hijacked by the satanists as the Devil’s Horns, often used with the back of the hand forward. As in any action invoking spiritual power the position and direction of the gesture has enormous importance. The meaning of the Hook Em Horns sign reversed or pointed toward the ground contains a completely different meaning.
So at Longhorns games I marvel at the ancestral knowledge and symbolism first used here to unhex the power of Texas Christian University. Tens of thousands waving the horns to ward off negative energy always makes me feel part of an ancient ceremonial lineage.
Long ago, Harley and I used to sit at the Saturday Drag Vendors market and discuss the impact of the Organic movement. As recorded by Suzanne Labray in Texas Gardener, through trial and error, Harley found which vegetables grow best in central Texas. “For his winter lettuce crop, he prefers Paris Island Cos Romaine, Bibb and Buttercrunch Butterhead, and Black Seeded Simpson Leaf. In late spring, he likes Jericho Romaine for its heat tolerance. Summer squash favorites include Eight Ball and Senator zucchini, Seneca Prolific yellow straight neck and Horn of Plenty yellow crook neck, and Gold Rush, an interesting hybrid of green zucchini and yellow straight neck. Celebrity tomatoes win Harley’s vote hands-down for their dependability and he also has had good results with the Juliet Hybrid grape tomato. Onion choices include White Contessa and White Bermuda, Southern Belle Red and Yellow Granex. Revolution and The Big Early are good picks for bell peppers.”
Pests don’t seem to be much of a problem at Clark’s Farm. However, when bugs do get out of hand, Harley uses Bt (Bacillus Thuringiensis), Neem oil, and Pyrethrin with a light hand.”
So when watching your next Longhorn game, when the fans are invoking the power of the Horns, remember Harley as a thoughtful Judge who understood the earth as an organic living thing.