Peter Lamborn Wilson/Hakim Bey

Dead at age 76.

You can read this flowery obituary for yourself about this “eccentric.” Online it is but a footnote that as “Hakim Bey,” his pseudonym, he endorsed adults having sex with children.

“Some writers have been troubled by Bey’s endorsement of adults having sex with children.[24] Michael Muhammad Knight, a novelist and former friend of Wilson, stated that “writing for NAMBLA amounts to activism in real life. As Hakim Bey, Peter creates a child molester’s liberation theology and then publishes it for an audience of potential offenders”[25] and disavowed his former mentor.[26]

I have heard from a number of readers over the years about Peter Lamborn Wilson/Hakim Bey and what they wrote would not fit well into the flowery obituary or even the Wikipedia version of this “eccentric,” or certainly into the idea that this man’s sexual practices were “imaginal only.” Nice try.

12 thoughts on “Peter Lamborn Wilson/Hakim Bey”

  1. Bob Kenney

    I believe Peter Lamborn Wilson and Hakim Bey were aliases of Dyer Grossman, Frank Shelden’s partner in crime.
    Some researchers into Grossman believe Peter Lamborn Wilson’s biography and published background were a complete hoax to mask his true identity since there was a warrant for his arrest in the states.
    If this was Grossman who died, good riddance to that rat.

      1. His picture is all over the Internet. I have learned never to say never but there is a pretty extensive history of Peter Lamborn Wilson that doesn’t weave into what is known about Shelden.

      2. Sorry- too early to think! I saw the name Dyer Grossman on your post but my brain thought Shelden. I confused the two.

        1. Understood, Judi Coltman.

          All the web images of Wilson/Bey I’ve seen show a bearded man, so his features are obscured. I have found only one image of Dyer Grossman, however. You can see it in this clipping of a 1977 article from the Record-Eagle:

          I can’t determine whether the bearded images of Wilson/Bey are a match for that photo of Grossman.

    1. Can you provide the evidence that Grossman and Wilson were the same man?

      If so, I’d be interested in reading it.


  2. What a glowing review and I see they kept his preferences to a minimum, and stated in a way to try to make you feel bad that you are tying up this “genius” in his “controversies” that you are supposed to dismiss. Nothing was lost here. And how convenient that he dies shortly before the world has new light shed upon predatory actions. I also would not be surprised if this death is only his latest dropping-off-the-map and character change. Peter Lamborn Wilson was indeed Grossman, and someone online the last few years have been put a lot of effort into not letting it be a known thing.

  3. In the case of this statement below, I would encourage others to share what they know of the actual Grossman/Wilson/Bey as many are also putting out their own flowerly and praise-heaping articles, some choosing to leave out his “ugly parts” alltogether.

    “I have heard from a number of readers over the years about Peter Lamborn Wilson/Hakim Bey and what they wrote would not fit well into the flowery obituary or even the Wikipedia version of this “eccentric,” or certainly into the idea that this man’s sexual practices were “imaginal only.” Nice try.”

  4. I don’t think we will ever know the truth, unfortunately. If PLW wasn’t Dyer Grossman, then they were clones of each other. There is biographical info of PLW, saying he was “born on Oct. 20, 1945, in Baltimore. The only child of Douglas Emory Wilson, a career Army officer and English professor, and Laura (Packwood) Wilson, a high school teacher, he grew in New Brunswick N.J.”
    but it was just too easy to steal the identity of people who died, for even this info to prove anything.
    Try googling; “man identified stole identity of a dead child” to see what I mean. Especially the article on “police spies” from The Guardian. It could even be done, in later life. Say you were an American traveling in India, and a traveling companion died from a heroin overdose there. You don’t tell anyone, and assume his identity?
    I’ve never had definitive proof, so I could STILL be wrong.
    There was another Johnny Gosch, if you don’t already know. Or was there? A man who died in 1990, carried ID for a John Gosch born the same year only months apart from the supposedly missing boy. I’ve never seen PROOF they were not the same person…
    Just too easy, to mess with IDs in US.

  5. I am not looking to make people believe one thing or another concerning Hakim Bey being Dyer Grossman but I have been curious as to why their is a strong effort to shut the discussion down anywhere it gets mentioned online for years now. All will decide to believe what they wish, and on their own. What I would like to do is pose a few questions with notes I have collected regarding Grossman/Wilson/Bey. If people are interested in these notes, I will return with more. Whatever comments people have and aspects they may want to know about, I will move future notes in that direction.

    1. After Francis Shelden and Adam Starchild fled the country and got themselves some new personas, just how interested do you think Dyer Grossman would in keeping that name and having consequences coming down directly onto himself with the other 2 gone? Starchild quite literally wrote a manual on how a disappearance could work in his book “How to legally obtain a second citizenship and passport and why you would want to.” I am pretty sure among these 3 characters that Starchild may have shared such a strategy with his 2 buddies during a meet up when they were all aware that the heat was getting turned up. Again, would Grossman be excited about all this coming down on top of him while the others fled the country?

    2. PLW has spoken of his love of Literary Hoaxes and released a few himself (see Ong’s Hat.”)
    Could he resist using a “life-hoax” if he felt the need to disappear?
    -From the opening of “Semiotext(e) a Science Fiction collection said to have been financed by Wilson’s parents.

    3. Joseph Matheny is someone who collaborated with Hakim Bey on the Ong’s Hat mythology, and built upon it. He organized a 1993 “T.A.Z.” event that featured Robert Anton Wilson and Hakim Bey as speakers.
    Whereas Robert Anton Wilson’s part was filmed with only minimal distortion effects, Wilson, performing as Bey, is blurred out almostentirely with the use of psychedelic colors and patterns in the video. Was this a style choice or was there a motive in keeping him “out of view” so to speak?

    I am not sure what to make of this, but when PLW wrote an obituary for Robert Anton Wilson his opening line is “For all I know, Robert and I could have been related.”

    4. The effort to hide would decrease over a few decades, with most being well aware that PLW and Hakim Bey were the same. Incredibly, the person himself did not seem aware of this. In Micheal Muhhamed’s book, “The Qur’an vs. William Burroughs” he asked Micheal, his sometimes assistant, to make sure that the 2 were seen as separate people and kept that way. Micheal shares his internal thoughts on this, flabbergasted and not sure what he could even say at that moment. “Does he even know that it is widely well known that the 2 are one and the same on the internet?”

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