Right now, as of February 1st, 2009, Conspiracy lives in Toronto, Ontario. He has lived in virtually every single city across Canada over the last 13 years since we have been creating our legacy as the twin hype behind the legendary Supreme Being Unit. He’s been homeless, he’s slept on couches, he’s been in his own apartment, he’s lived with rappers from coast to coast, and he’s been in nice, healthy environments and mini-mansions, along the way. I don’t know exactly when he took his turn down the dark path he’s now slowly but surely treading on, but I last remember seeing the Conspiracy I grew up with sometime around fall 1996. We moved from Ottawa back to Toronto where we were born, to enroll in music college. Our tuition got delayed a semester, so I decided to stay in Toronto, and Conspiracy decided to leave the city. Honestly, it was never the same again. He went to Edmonton, Vancouver, and a few other cities before I saw him again, and the next time I saw him…. he was, just… different. Very, very different.
“That shit from the movies, where someone goes “it wasn’t me, I have a twin brother!” That shit is TRUE for me!”
Man, it was really bad back then. I was afraid of him. I didn’t know him. I honestly told him once, near the turn of the millennium, as I looked into his eyes: “I do not know who I am looking at anymore.” Doesn’t sound like much, but when you are looking into a family members eyes (particularly your identical twin brother), and speaking directly from your heart, saying something like that is a excruciating and crystallizing moment in life, and a serious sign that things done changed. He nearly destroyed the world I fought hard to create in Toronto, back then. I worked at HMV 333 Yonge St, the Flagship store near Dundas St., and he would come in, acting kinda erratic, and people who didn’t know Mindbender had a twin brother would think it was me, and would get mad because I wasn’t acting how I normally did around them, and sometimes straight ignored them. That shit from the movies, where someone goes “it wasn’t me, I have a twin brother!” That shit is TRUE for me! Laugh all you want. It helps soothe my pain. It got so crazy, my boss almost fired me for insubordination not knowing that it was Conspiracy who was talking to her, and when I went home, my landlord almost evicted me for other things that Conspiracy did while I was busy at work all day. Then, I’d come home and see he spent other parts of the day just playing Playstation, and not getting money like you need to, to survive and live decently in Toronto. That was in 2001 or so, and we got through that chapter. Painfully, but we eventually got beyond all that. Unfortunately, those days have returned yet again. They are not as painful as they were before, but I’m having a case of deja vu in 2009. It simply means we have not yet solved the central problem. What is the problem called? Nobody really knows. How do you solve a problem you can’t find? Welcome to my life, my friend.
What I believe, is that Conspiracy has a sense of entitlement embedded in him quite deep, and it’s part of the secret source of his hell. Both of us have been called “gifted” children our whole lives. We went to a special art-focused elementary school, we were always A-plus students academically, and often got bored with the things the school system tried to shovel into our very-active brains. We were always thinking ahead of our age, contemplating government conspiracies, aliens, drugs, psychic powers, pre-Biblical history, ancient religions, and any other random subject that is more intellectually stimulating than Shakespeare or the Canadian Shield. I’m still a sponge for all the knowledge in the universe, but Conspiracy just kept going down one certain path. These days, he’s all into the Holy Tabernacle Ministries, founded by Malachi Z. York. Erykah Badu and Posdnous of De La Soul are a few of the other hip hop heads into HTM. I have read some books on it, but find them to be no different than any other religion. I have learned from those books, but I don’t exactly believe that Nibiru the mothership planet is coming back to rescue the devotees in some new Black rapture. But that’s just me. Conspiracy constantly speaks about his belief and faith in HTM, and sometimes speaks about disappearing from hip hop and society to go join the head temple in Atlanta. So if he ever completely drops off everyone’s radar, then put that on your places to look for him. Not that I think he has the money to afford the trip…
I say all this to say: Conspiracy is an unbelievably complex individual. Mind-bendingly complex, if I may. His history with drugs of many kinds and his history as a rebellious teenager who defied the law and the system for so many years, has created an extension to his core character that I think is part of the problem he’s struggling with today. He’s got some mental health issues (we all do in this sick and decaying society, just some more or less than others) and he’s got some drug abuse issues (we all do in this sick and decaying society, jsut some more or less than others). The thing is, Conspiracy doesn’t really recognize these problems very well. He calls himself a “hedonist” but isn’t fully equipped to be responsible for his own intoxication. He can’t afford everything he wants out of life, because he’s that off balance. He speaks of grandiose plans of music world domination and business schemes that don’t often fully manifest (as seen on a few message boards around the internet), and his life is a constantly shifting journey tying his glorious childhood to a negative-energy-generating teenage chapter, currently connecting to a crippled adulthood, due to the fact that he has not fully realized his potential.
“If you spent five minutes around him, you would be able to tell something isn’t exactly right, so it’s no big secret to reveal any of this.”
In my opinon, Conspiracy needs to go to rehab, straight up. No homeless shelter to make him see, no jail to wake him up, no living in an apartment near his family so we can keep an eye on him, no spot in New York City to try and make more rap dreams come true… he needs a motherfuckin’ time out like Chris Webber, word to Common Sense. Until he faces his mysterious, semi-diagnosed yet untreated mental health issues and his persistent addiction to narcotics of all kinds, he will not achieve his dreams or reach his goals, and I’m seeing it. All other options are just temporary delays of the inevitable showdown he must face in life, to me. I say this because I love him, and I know him pretty good. I have seen him do a lot of things that he’d never want shared, and I have heard him say things that I would never want to repeat to any human being. All of this equates to me realizing that we are all struggling with something dark inside of us all, but some of us have it worse than others. And beyond that, we just can’t kill each other’s demons. It’s the one-self duel, word to Divine Styler. Conspiracy is the only person who can completely cure himself of his double barrel disease. Exactly like Ol’ Dirty Bastard, an artistic genius who was also suffering from mental health issues (a form of schizophrenia) and drug abuse issues (crack, coke, alcohol, etc.) while still living in the public eye, Conspiracy needs to chiggedy-check himself before he wrecks himself.
If anyone has any words of wisdom, suggestions, harsh truths, or good advice they want to offer, please be my guest. I hid this secret from the world for years and it got us both nothing. Now, I have nothing to hide, and I don’t think Conspiracy should hide anything either. If you spent five minutes around him, you would be able to tell something isn’t exactly right, so it’s no big secret to reveal any of this. Because as I said to Conspiracy at one point: “you do the drugs to hide from the mental issues you are facing. You’ve been doing the drugs for nearly a decade, and the problems are not going away. Don’t you feel like it’s time to face your struggles in life straight up, without drugs or alcohol or anything but your honest, pure self?”
Conspiracy is part of the Supreme Being Unit, which is all of us in life. His pain is our pain, his joy is our joy, his heart is your heart, and his mind is your mind. When ODB died, I was fucked up severely for days. It was so avoidable, his death. I feel the same about Conspiracy. If he doesn’t get better, it’s only gonna get worse, and we’ve seen a LOT of dark days, and if there are even darker days ahead, then I guess I’m gonna try my best to get thru them, and live to tell the story. I thought we hit rock bottom a few years ago, but rock bottom is supposed to be a sacred turning point in someone’s life, where they realize they are at the crossroads of godly and devilish choices. I hope Conspiracy saves himself and his Inner God conquers his Inner Devil. Time will tell.
Finally, from the center of my soul, I must say: peace to those who care. A lot of people have helped keep Conspiracy/Khari from making a fatal mistake for all these years, and to all you earth angels, I thank you with more appreciation than words can ever capture. From here, we can’t do anything but care for him and love him from afar, from outside of his life. We can’t make any choices for him, he has to want to change and heal and grow from where he’s at.
Whether tough love or gentle, we all must keep hope alive, and tell Conspiracy to relax his mind, let his conscious be free, and keep his head up.
Adhimusic “Mindbender Supreme” Stewart