Tag Archives: hollow earth


Vril, the Power of the Coming Race by Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1986 second printing from Spiritual Fiction Publication / Gerber Communications, is part of the collection at the Reading Room.

Edward Bulwer-Lytton Vril from Spiritual Fiction Publication / Gerber Communications

VRIL, mankind’s occult power of the future, and the kind of life and society created by its use in the interior of the earth, is the vivid picture presented in this book. Written 100 years ago by Lord Bulwer-Lytton, famous English Rosicrucian, statesman and author (see: Zanoni, a Rosicrucian Tale another Steiner-book), VRIL, his last book, stands as stern warning and reliable witness to his profound concern for the future welfare of mankind.

VRIL made today’s science-fiction books possible and interesting, but VRIL itself was a serious and prophetic testament that man today must pay heed to, if he is to survive, and become MAN.” — back cover

The Coming Race

Hermetic Library fellow T Polyphilus reviews The Coming Race by Edward Bulwer-Lytton.

Edward Bulwer-Lytton The Coming Race

Lytton’s Coming Race is brief, even if a little slow at points. As a seminal piece of 19th-century science fiction, the whole plot is just an excuse for fictional anthropology, since the protagonist/narrator is utterly unchanged by the experience. The utopian element reflects a little bit of Fourierist background (with one explicit reference to Robert Owen), mostly in the small scale of community and the valorizing of the industry of children.

The reader may weigh the extent to which Lytton was actually employing the subterranean civilization of Vril-ya as an alternative in order to criticize modern industrialized nations, democratic politics, and traditional gender mores. The protagonist is never fully persuaded of the superiority of the Vril-ya’s social system, but the fact that the English author used a proud American narrator suggests that the fictional speaker’s convictions don’t necessarily match those of the writer.

What goes without question by the narrator is the physical and technological superiority of the Vril-ya. The book’s title alludes to the idea that any full-scale contact between them and the humanity of the Earth’s surface will only leave the Vril-ya as complete conquerors. But this scenario is left as an intimation of the future.

This novel was almost as influential on the hollow earth conspiracy meme (and eventually UFO culture) as the same author’s Zanoni was for traditional Western occultism. The story seems even to have contributed to Aleister Crowley’s Atlantis, where Lytton’s Vril energy sets a precedent for Crowley’s mysterious ZRO.

Read for it’s own sake as a fictional entertainment, The Coming Race is a little exotic, but fairly dated and plodding. Taken as a node in the discourse of 19th-century social reform and occult science, however, it is abidingly curious and engaging. [via]

Sex Secrets of Ancient Atlantis

Hermetic Library fellow T Polyphilus reviews Sex Secrets of Ancient Atlantis by John Grant (Paul Barnett). And check out the groovy cover for the 1986 edition:

John Grant's Sex Secrets of Ancient Atlantis


Sex Secrets of Ancient Atlantis is a meticulously-argued presentation of entirely nonexistent research demonstrating conclusively to anyone of careless mental habits that the Atlantean civilization was destroyed due to intoxicated concupiscence. The book concludes with a rousing call to action in the light of the impending Atlantean reconquest, as they are to return (soon!) from the hollow earth, bearing Reichian super-science and the wrath of Pan.

The crux of the text is a translation of an alleged primary document: the Scented Garden of Atlantean antiquity, the antediluvian Ananga Ranga known as “The Enigma Stones.” This work includes an assortment of canonical sexual techniques (or bandramis) that can be put to practical use by any imprudent reader. In my estimation, however, the best parts of the book are those dealing with the vicissitudes faced by the intrepid researchers who brought to light the Atlantean legacy, and who reasoned out its alarming and possibly lucrative consequences. As exciting as an ancient apocalypse might be, it pales beside drunken faculty holiday parties and oversexed Tibetan exploratory expeditions.

Popularizing author John Grant shows every sign of having read the varied and highly dubious works that he lists among his sources, so that he does real justice to them when presenting and parodying their ideas. Sadly, Sex Secrets of Ancient Atlantis is no longer as topical as it was in the mid-1980s. Specialists in the field of eroto-crypto-archaeology and its affiliated conspiracy theories are aware that the Internet has succeeded in its real (Atlantean) purpose, which was to pervert our civilization “towards something more akin to the Atlantean ideal” (195). As a result, the secret Atlantean invasion is a fait accompli — to the point where the USA elected its first Atlantean president in 2008. [via]



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