Tag Archives: omnium gatherum

Omnium Gatherum: April 15, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for April 15, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Cinemagician: Conversations with Kenneth Anger by Carl Abrahamsson

    Abrahamsson Cinemagician

    “Iconic American filmmaker Kenneth Anger has inspired generations of creative storytellers since the late 1940s. He is a unique visionary who drifts from pure poetry within his magical filmmaking to sardonic gossip in his bestselling “Hollywood Babylon” books. In-between these extremes we find a person who never tires of exploring his own creativity. In this intimate documentary, Anger lets us in on his fascinating life story, his approaches to filmmaking, and his relationship to British occultist Aleister Crowley.”

  • For sale: Aleister Crowley’s home of black magic owned by Jimmy Page” — Jim Lawson, The Times

    Lawson Times Aleister Crowley's home of black magic

    “The fire-ravaged ruins of the home once owned by an occultist described as “the most evil man in the world” is up for sale for more than half a million pounds.”

  • Invocation of Almost: The Art of David Tibet” through May 25, Cal State Fullerton’s Nicholas & Lee Begovich Gallery, California [HT OC Weekly]

    “Invocation of Almost will showcase a large selection of David Tibet’s past, present, and future paintings and drawings, which Channel his Cartoon Imaginings of Apocalypses, Hallucinatory Scribble Myths, and Sidereal Dream PickNicks. There will also be many new sculptures and installation pieces – all previously unseen works – which have been recently shown to Tibet as Dreams from the Wooden Child. Some of these unique artworks include, or have been inspired by, Coptic and Akkadian texts, languages that Tibet has studied for many years. Also on display will be original hand-written lyrics by Tibet, as well as ephemera from Tibet’s ParaMusical group, Current 93. An entirely new musical composition has been created by Current 93, as Red House as Red Barn, especially for The CSUF Begovich Gallery. In addition, this exhibition will flicker AlephFilms by the video artist Davide Pepe, David Tibet’s long-term collaborator and the FilmSaint for C93. An extensive full-color exhibition catalogue will be produced in Lunar Conjunction with this exhibition with texts and essays on David and his work by: Anohni, Nick Blinko, Henry Boxer, Jacqueline Bunge, Nick Cave, Shirley Collins, Michel Faber, Gef!, Norbert Kox, Thomas Ligotti, Hugo Lundhaug, Seth Sanders, David Tibet, Ola Wikander, Martin Worthington, and Daniel Wojcik. “

  • Gale Introduces New Digital Archive on Religions of America
    Traces the History of Religious Developments and Movements Unique to America
    ” — News release via PR Newswire

    “Gale, a Cengage company, is introducing a new digital archive that explores the history and unique character of the American religious experience. Religions of America provides scholars and researchers access to the largest resource of its kind that follows the development of religions and religious movements born in and significantly reshaped by the United States from 1820 to 1990.

    Cross searchable with other Gale Primary Sources, Religions of America comprises five unique collections:

    The FBI Files on Jonestown, Moorish Science Temple of America, and the Branch Davidians: Explores the events surrounding the Free Peoples Temple in Jonestown; the activities of the early Black-Moslem Moorish Science Temple of America and, through reproduced negotiation transcripts, the beliefs and practices of David Koresh and his Branch Davidian followers.”

  • Ranked: The Creepiest Lore Episodes” — David Chiodaroli, Screen Rant

    Chiodaroli Screen Rant creepiest lore

    “The episode delves deep into the background of the accentric Parsons, one of the pioneers of early racketeering and devout occultist, who blended science and spirituality in ways that seem unfathomable. Yet, Parsons manages to bridge this gap, resulting in a story that’s equally weird and enjoyable.

    While it may be a little unsettling to think that we owe much of our modern knowledge of space exploration to a known demon summoner, there isn’t anything particularly frightening in Parson’s story. Sure, the legendary occultist Aleister Crowley makes an appearance to impart some philosophical wisdom, but unless you have a particular aversion to the often reviled religious leader, then there isn’t much here to trigger the heevy jeevies.”

  • Devil’s Fairground by The Tiger Lillies [also, HT Prospect Magazine]

    “London’s the Tiger Lillies are celebrating 30 years of their provocative brand of avant-garde punk-cabaret with their symphonic latest album, Devil’s Fairground (out 15 February). Themes of junkies, prostitutes and all forms of vice continue to make up the majority of their work, while frontman Martyn Jacques has a knack for finding beauty in the macabre and grotesque, like Poe, Lovecraft and Edward Gorey before him. The band have performed all over the world, making their way from humble beginnings busking in the streets and playing bar-rooms to performing in massive concert halls and opera houses. They’ve also shared bills with St. Vincent, John Cale, Patti Smith, David Byrne and many others, and have built a legion of devoted fans including film director Terry Gilliam, the late Robin Williams and Simpsons creator Matt Groening.

    Devil’s Fairground takes the listener on a tour through the sordid underbelly of post-soviet Prague, where Jacques’s eye finds poetry in legless drunks, bored hookers and fatherless children.”

  • Ydg Drops Terrifying Ode to Occult Deity, “Baphomet”” — Matthew Meadow, YourEDM

    “Baphomet is a widely misunderstood concept. Popularly characterized as a demon deity with the head of a goat and body of a man with black wings and long, pointed horns, it’s easy to draw a parallel to the idea of the devil. In reality, it’s actually a symbol denoting “perfect social order.”

    While it’s the unwanted interpretation at play here in YDG’s new song “Baphomet,” it’s an absolute banger all the same.”

  • Faces of Muhammad: Western Perceptions of the Prophet of Islam from the Middle Ages to Today by John Tolan, due in June from Princeton University Press [HT AlterNet]

    Tolan Faces of Muhammad

    “Heretic and impostor or reformer and statesman? The contradictory Western visions of Muhammad

    In European culture, Muhammad has been vilified as a heretic, an impostor, and a pagan idol. But these aren’t the only images of the Prophet of Islam that emerge from Western history. Commentators have also portrayed Muhammad as a visionary reformer and an inspirational leader, statesman, and lawgiver. In Faces of Muhammad, John Tolan provides a comprehensive history of these changing, complex, and contradictory visions. Starting from the earliest calls to the faithful to join the Crusades against the “Saracens,” he traces the evolution of Western conceptions of Muhammad through the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and up to the present day.

    Faces of Muhammad reveals a lengthy tradition of positive portrayals of Muhammad that many will find surprising. To Reformation polemicists, the spread of Islam attested to the corruption of the established Church, and prompted them to depict Muhammad as a champion of reform. In revolutionary England, writers on both sides of the conflict drew parallels between Muhammad and Oliver Cromwell, asking whether the prophet was a rebel against legitimate authority or the bringer of a new and just order. Voltaire first saw Muhammad as an archetypal religious fanatic but later claimed him as an enemy of superstition. To Napoleon, he was simply a role model: a brilliant general, orator, and leader.

    The book shows that Muhammad wears so many faces in the West because he has always acted as a mirror for its writers, their portrayals revealing more about their own concerns than the historical realities of the founder of Islam.”

  • Smoke and Mirrors: The Psychology of Magic exhibition, through September 15, Wellcome Collection museum, London

    Wellcome Smoke and Mirrors

    “What can magic and conjuring tell us about the human mind? Our new exhibition brings together the worlds of psychology and entertainment in search of the truth about deception.

    Explore how our biases affect our perception and whether our senses can be hacked. Discover spirit photography, magic props and psychology experiments to see how magic works on – and in – the mind of the spectator.”

  • HERETICAL FATES ART BOOK and TAROT DECK with Danika XIX. A NSFW Tarot deck and art book with 78 photographs by Allan Amato, descriptions by Danika XIX and art by JAW Cooper + Lauren Panepinto. A crowdfunding effort by Allan Amato.

    Amato Danica heretical fates art book and tarot deck the hierophant

    “The idea for this deck arrived over breakfast one fateful sunday morning. My partner Mallory and I each pulled our tarot card, a prompt we do together to answer a creative question, get our bearings, or just invite our subconscious into the conversation.

    I wondered aloud whether a tarot version of those old timey naked lady playing card decks existed out in the world already (they do), and would a functioning photographed deck be interesting to contemplate? (it was) My partner immediately encouraged me to think more about it, and very much in the chaos theory way I do things, I had two shoots scheduled the following week.

    In addition to the ethereal Danika, we have JAW Cooper creating the suites, backs and frontispiece of the deck, and Lauren Panepinto designing the complete series, soup to nuts. A true creative dream team that came together to make this the best possible project it could be. To say nothing of all the staggering subjects who allowed themselves to be transformed into angels, monsters and misfits! Ye Gods; Danika XIX, Amanda Palmer, Stoya, Joanna Angel, Vivid Vivka, Sash Suicide, Candy Ken, Ana Fox, Buck Angel, Jiz Lee, Anikka Albrite, Dani Daniels, Dominique, Nina Kate, Mick Blue, Mousa Kraish, Jeana Turner, Eugene Simon, Valis Volkova, Anactingangel, Bree Daniels, Jenna Fox, Pulpfictionally, Misti Dawn, Alexis Fawx, Fawn Grey, Taylor Wilkey, Eirenne SG, Thomas Gunter, Susanna Eggli, Mark Snyder, Megan Ayn, Ace Tilton Ratcliff, Roarie Yum, Ali Rose, Brandon Scott, TJ, Idiivil, Tee Beez, Andi Rye, Ryan Mclane, Autumn Fryer, Ms Briq House, Jettila Lewis, Small Hands, Vanessa Alexandra, Stephanie Inagaki, Tita Cupcake, Biqtchpuddin, Misfit Marceline and Astraia Esprit!”

Omnium Gatherum: April 11, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for April 11, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Darkness Visible, Finally: Astronomers Capture First Ever Image of a Black Hole. Astronomers at last have captured a picture of one of the most secretive entities in the cosmos.” — Dennis Overbye, The New York Times

    Overbye New York Times supermassive black hole

    “For years, and for all the mounting scientific evidence, black holes have remained marooned in the imaginations of artists and the algorithms of splashy computer models of the kind used in Christopher Nolan’s outer-space epic “Interstellar.” Now they are more real than ever.

    ‘We have seen what we thought was unseeable,’ said Shep Doeleman, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, and director of the effort to capture the image, during a Wednesday news conference in Washington, D.C.”

  • Forbidden Archeology of the Divine Feminine” — Otep Shamaya, The Brooklyn Rail

    “My hope is to help eradicate historical amnesia and the phony ethos women are innate subordinates to men by pollinating you with a roaring axiom of gender equality and women’s historical contributions to the advancement of civilization. A difficult endeavor but, hey, it’s what I do.”

  • Anton LaVey – Into the Devil’s Den – documentary. Anton LaVey described by the people who knew and worked with him.” A crowdfunding effort by Carl Abrahamsson

    “My film ANTON LAVEY – INTO THE DEVIL’S DEN is a documentary that gives you exclusive insight into the man detractors called “The Black Pope.” The film contains never before shown interview material with LaVey, private photographs, rare recordings, plus in-depth interviews with Blanche Barton, Peter Gilmore, Peggy Nadramia, Bob Johnson, Kenneth Anger, Michael Moynihan, Mitch Horowitz, Ruth Waytz, Carl Abrahamsson, and more…

    The film is on its way! But we still have a long way to go in the expensive struggle of post-production. This is where you can help out. The film needs more archival material, sound-cleaning and color grading, all of which requires TIME and money. If you support this film, you will not only reap the infernal benefits of association; you will also take part of some amazing “perks.””

  • Roman Emperor Book. Resources and discussion for readers of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius.” A free online course by Donald Robertson, in conjunction with his book How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius.

    Robertson How to Think Like a Roman Emperor audiobook

    “This is a free eLearning course for anyone who’s reading my book How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius. You’ll obtain access to extra resources here, including downloads, interviews, and quiz questions. You’ll also be able to join in discussions about each chapter with other readers.”

  • Satanic Temple challenges Missouri abortion law” — Jim Salter, Associated Press

    “A member of the Satanic Temple in Missouri is challenging a state law that requires women seeking an abortion to wait three days, saying that it violates the member’s religious freedom.”

  • SanTO, el primer robot católico del mundo que te escucha y selecciona textos religiosos para ti” — Sinembargo [HT Mariana]

    Sinembargo SanTO

    “Aunque muchas personas equiparan tecnología con progreso desde una perspectiva agnóstica o atea , lo cierto es que en la innovación la espiritualidad también tiene cabida, algo que se plasma en diversos proyectos que vinculan religión con IA, robótica, transformación digital o blockchain. Entre otros, te hemos contado que el cepillo de la iglesia anglicana permite pagos móviles, que un robot budista ya predica en un templo nipón o que el Vaticano digitalizó sus secretos empleando machine learning e inteligencia artificial. ¡Si hasta el Papa tiene Twitter!

    Ahora, las personas mayores en busca de un compañero de alta tecnología pueden encontrar consuelo en un pequeño robot que los escucha y les lee las Sagradas Escrituras. Con una apariencia simular a un pequeño altar, está equipado con un software cuyo algoritmo escucha al usuario, escanea su rostro en busca de signos de emociones específicas y selecciona textos religiosos que pueden ser relevantes para sus problemas.

    El autómata teomórfico se llama SanTO -de hecho, es similar a uno- y ha sido diseñado por Gabriele Trovato de la Universidad de Waseda.”

    Although many people equate technology with progress from an agnostic or atheist perspective, the truth is that in innovation, spirituality also has a place, something that is reflected in various projects that link religion with AI, robotics, digital transformation or blockchain. Among others, we have told you that the brush of the Anglican church allows mobile payments, that a Buddhist robot already preaches in a Japanese temple or that the Vatican digitized its secrets using machine learning and artificial intelligence. If even the Pope has Twitter!

    Now, older people looking for a high-tech companion can find comfort in a small robot that listens to them and reads them the Holy Scriptures. With a simulated appearance to a small altar, it is equipped with software whose algorithm listens to the user, scans his face for signs of specific emotions and selects religious texts that may be relevant to his problems.

    The theomorphic automaton is called SanTO – in fact, it is similar to one – and has been designed by Gabriele Trovato of the University of Waseda.

  • Aphantasia: Ex-Pixar chief Ed Catmull says ‘my mind’s eye is blind’” — James Gallagher, BBC News

    “Most people can close their eyes and conjure up images inside their head such as counting sheep or imagining the face of a loved one.

    But Ed Catmull, 74, has the condition aphantasia, in which people cannot visualise mental images at all.

    And in a surprising survey of his former employees, so do some of the world’s best animators.

    Ed revolutionised 3D graphics, and the method he developed for animating curved surfaces became the industry standard.

    He first realised his brain was different when trying to perform Tibetan meditation with a colleague.”

  • How Did Conspiracy Theories Come to Dominate American Culture?. Thomas Milan Konda Untangles Our Obsession Complicated Plots.” — Thomas Milan Konda, LitHub; a reprint from Konda’s Conspiracies of Conspiracies: How Delusions Have Overrun America

    Konda Conspiracy of Conspiracies

    “Americans see hoaxes and plots everywhere: from climate change to immunizations to almost anything having to do with Hillary Clinton. But why? Is the constant stream of conspiracy theories a side effect of social media? Are conspiracy theories a product of the increasing polarization of politics? Or have they always been around and for some reason we just notice them more now?

    We can start to answer the last question: in their modern form, they have been around for at least two hundred years. The United States was less than ten years old when New England religious leaders sounded the alarm about the Illuminati’s plans to destroy the republic. And this was only the beginning.”

  • Why is Amazon Prime using astrology to sell you stuff? Amazon Prime members might have noticed a new horoscope feature that matches one’s zodiac sign with products and services. Is it a joke?” — Rina Raphael, Fast Company

    “In a truly bizarre, capitalist twist on astrology, Amazon Prime’s Insider newsletter is sending monthly shopping horoscopes to its members. The company maps out the best products and Prime benefits by zodiac sign, because obviously, all your spirituality needs align with their inventory.”

  • The New Science of How to Argue—Constructively. Disagreement is central to our lives online. ‘Erisologists’ want to study it more systematically.” — Jesse SIngal, The Atlantic; from the All-Hail-Discordia dept.

    “In the early days of the internet, way back in the 1990s, tech utopians envisioned a glittering digital future in which people from very different backgrounds could come together online and, if not reach consensus, at least learn something from one another. In the actual future we inhabit, things didn’t work out this way. The internet, especially social media, looks less like a dinner party and more like a riot. People talk past one another, and the discussion spirals down accordingly.

    To the Swedish blogger John Nerst, online flame wars like those reveal a fundamental shift in how people debate public issues. Nerst and a nascent movement of other commentators online believe that the dynamics of today’s debates—especially the misunderstandings and bad-faith arguments that lead to the online flame wars—deserve to be studied on their own terms.

    Erisology is the study of disagreement, specifically the study of unsuccessful disagreement. An unsuccessful disagreement is an exchange where people are no closer in understanding at the end than they were at the beginning, meaning the exchange has been mostly about talking past each other and/or hurling insults. A really unsuccessful one is where people actually push each other apart, and this seems disturbingly common.

    The word erisology comes from Eris, the Greek goddess of discord, who proved in antiquity that you could get people into fights by giving them ambiguous messages and letting them interpret them self-servingly and according to their own biases.”

  • Pizzagate, Satanic Panic, and the Power of Conspiracy Theories” — Anna Merlan, Jezebel; a book excerpt from Republic of Lies: American Conspiracy Theorists and Their Surprising Rise to Power, due out in a few days

    Merlan Republic of Lies

    “These outbreaks of religious hysteria recur so persistently in American life for a reason: they are, like so many conspiracy theories, a response to moments of social change and perceived societal fracture. Satanic Panic allegations first arose during a moment in the 1980s of intense concern over the number of women in the workforce and a subsequent rise in “latchkey kids” and paid caregivers.

    Pizzagate emerged during the 2016 elections, a time when Americans were re-litigating, to an exhausting degree, our beliefs, our vision of America, and our sexual ethics. The paranoid idea of sexual predators hiding in the highest echelons of power was not so paranoid; Pizzagate, though, spun it through a nexus of faux black magic, imagined ritual, and nonsensical accusations that were somehow both unbelievable and yet, for a lot of people, unbelievably powerful.”

Omnium Gatherum: April 6, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for April 6, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Harry Potter books burned by Polish priests alarmed by magic” — BBC; from the Late-To-The-Party dept.

    BBC Burning Harry Potter in Gdansk

    “Catholic priests in northern Poland have burned books they consider to be sacrilegious, including ones from the Harry Potter boy wizard series.

    An evangelical group, the SMS from Heaven Foundation, published pictures of the burning – which took place in the city of Gdansk – on Facebook.”

  • Harry Potter books burned by Polish priests alarmed by magic – BBC News” — Alex Sumner, Sol Ascendans; from the And-Then-Spank-Me dept.

    “Yes indeed! If these Catholic priests want to burn any books associated with magick and witchcraft, by rights the first book they should be setting on fire is the Bible itself!

    Now I appreciate that some may find this idea a little controversial, so I propose a compromise:

    I hereby give these priests permission to burn the occult fiction novels of Alex Sumner – so long as they pay for them first.”

  • Yearbook Weirdness. From Akron’s 1917 yearbook.” — Craig Conley, Abecedarian

    Conley Yearbook weirdness from Akron's 1917 yearbook

  • The Mormon church’s new ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy” — Lauren Jackson, CNN [HT Ulysses]

    “Claiming to speak for God is a tricky business — especially when God changes his mind, often, on hot-button political issues after receiving immense public backlash.”

  • Tibetan Yoga: Principles and Practices by Ian A Barker, foreword by Bhakha Tulku Pema Rigdzin Rinpoche, due in May, from Inner Traditions

    Baker Tibetan Yoga

    “A visual presentation of Tibetan yoga, the hidden treasure at the heart of the Tibetan Tantric Buddhist tradition

    • Explains the core principles and practices of Tibetan yoga with illustrated instructions

    • Explores esoteric practices less familiar in the West, including sexual yoga, lucid dream yoga, and yoga enhanced by psychoactive substances

    • Draws on scientific research and contemplative traditions to explain Tibetan yoga from a historical, anthropological, and biological perspective

    • Includes full-color reproductions of previously unpublished works of Himalayan art

    Tibetan yoga is the hidden treasure at the heart of the Tibetan Tantric Buddhist tradition: a spiritual and physical practice that seeks an expanded experience of the human body and its energetic and cognitive potential. In this pioneering and highly illustrated overview, Ian A. Baker introduces the core principles and practices of Tibetan yoga alongside historical illustrations of the movements and beautiful, full-color works of Himalayan art, never before published.

    Drawing on Tibetan cultural history and scientific research, the author explores Tibetan yogic practices from historical, anthropological, and biological perspectives, providing a rich background to enable the reader to understand this ancient tradition with both the head and the heart. He provides complete, illustrated instructions for meditations, visualizations, and sequences of practices for the breath and body, as well as esoteric practices including sexual yoga, lucid dream yoga, and yoga enhanced by psychoactive plants. He explains how, while Tibetan yoga absorbed aspects of Indian hatha yoga and Taoist energy cultivation, this ancient practice largely begins where physically-oriented yoga and chi-gong end, by directing prana, or vital energy, toward the awakening of latent human abilities and cognitive states. He shows how Tibetan yoga techniques facilitate transcendence of the self and suffering and ultimately lead to Buddhist enlightenment through transformative processes of body, breath, and consciousness.

    Richly illustrated with contemporary ethnographic photography of Tibetan yoga practitioners and rare works of Himalayan art, including Tibetan thangka paintings, murals from the Dalai Lama’s once-secret meditation chamber in Lhasa, and images of yogic practice from historical practice manuals and medical treatises, this groundbreaking book reveals Tibetan yoga’s ultimate expression of the interconnectedness of all existence.”

  • Part 2 of Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina keeps the Harry Potter influence going. The new episodes deepen the characters and themes and draw on Star Wars and Lord of the Rings” — Noel Murphy, The Verge

    Murphy The Verge Sabrina season 2 Netflix

    “Everyone who’s been enjoying the magician-in-training aspect of Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina should be happy to know that the second half of the show’s first season doubles down on its debt to Harry Potter and Buffy the Vampire Slayer while also drawing some on Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings. One of the most enduring ideas popularized by George Lucas and J.R.R. Tolkien is that world-changing powers can easily be misused. In this latest Sabrina run, the heroine’s decision to sign her name in “The Book of the Beast” at the end of the season’s first half means she’s now one of the most capable witches on Earth, and those new abilities are changing her.”

  • Harold Bloom: Anti-Inkling?” — Michael Weingrad, Jewish Review of Books [HT Arts & Letters Daily]

    “Bloom, though, views Lindsay’s novel as a kind of spontaneous Gnostic scripture. In his reading, Crystalman is the oppressive god, or demiurge, who according to Gnostic theology keeps us locked in the material world and ignorant of our radically free natures. Whether or not this is what Lindsay had in mind, in The Flight to Lucifer Bloom makes the Gnostic content didactically explicit.

    In Bloom’s version, the alien planet Lucifer is inhabited by warring tribes named for ancient Gnostic sects: Marcionites, Mandaeans, Sethites, etc. Lindsay’s Krag is renamed Valentinus, after the much-reviled 2nd-century Gnostic theologian. Meanwhile, the Maskull substitute, Thomas Perscors, has been turned by Bloom into a poor cousin of Conan the Barbarian. He battles the planet’s demiurge with sword and shield but more often struggles to escape the sexual snares of several monstrous yet alluring female deities.”

  • Lust Never Sleeps. Two new books on sex and power.” — Charlotte Shane, Book Forum; about The Trouble with Men: Reflections on Sex, Love, Marriage, Porn, and Power by David Shields and Screwed: How Women Are Set Up to Fail at Sex by Lili Boisvert [HT Arts & Letters Daily]

    Shields The Trouble with Men

    Boisvert Screwed

    “We’ve had half a century with The Second Sex, The Dialectic of Sex, Sexual Politics, and all the rest, yet straight men of letters still regard their fossilized sexism and quotidian horniness as windows into existential wisdom. Hard again! the male author marvels while streaming free porn in his book-lined office. What does it all mean?

  • Was the real Socrates more worldly and amorous than we knew?” — Armand D’Angour, Aeon

    “The real Socrates must remain elusive but, in the statements of Aristotle, Aristoxenus and Clearchus of Soli, we get intriguing glimpses of a different Socrates from the one portrayed so eloquently in Plato’s writings.”

  • Handmade Black Skull Dice (Set of 5) from Secret Warehouse

    Secret Warehouse black skull dice

    “Up your game to a hardcore level at the gaming table with this Black Skull Dice Set. Each dice features tiny skulls to represent each D6 roll faces, each intricately handcrafted to add a morbid character. Makes a perfect party accessory or surprise a skull-lover friend. 🎲☠️”

Omnium Gatherum: March 30, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 30, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Damien Echols Survived 18 Years On Death Row With The Help Of Magick. Damien Echols was sentenced to death in 1994 for the infamous West Memphis murders of three young boys, but was freed in 2011.” — Becca Van Sambeck, Oxygen [HT Rev. Stacey L]

    “Imagine this: You’re locked away in a tiny bare cell, far away from your friends, your family, your home. You’re deprived of sunlight to the point where you never know what time it is; you barely interact with other other humans; you’re constantly in some kind of physical pain. Every day brings you that much closer to your death sentence, one that’s been handed down for a crime you know you didn’t commit.

    That existence was Damien Echols’ reality on death row for 18 years. And somehow, he survived the experience and came out stronger and more fulfilled than ever — and he credits it all to what he calls ‘high magick.'”

  • A sneak peek into Opus Alchymicum by J Daniel Gunther” — Wennofer

    Gunther Opus Alchymicum white

    “Opus Alchymicum, second edition – the white edition-limited to 500 copies. A bookshelf size of 9″ x 12″ with 56 full color pages, white cloth bound hard cover and slipcase. This edition also contains additional study images and introduction.”

  • To Believe or Not to Believe: That Is Not the Question” — Peter Bebergal, The Paris Review [HT Forbidden Histories]

    Bebergal Paris Review To believe or not ouija board

    “As a writer whose chosen subject is religion and, more recently, magic and its supernatural cousins, I admit that I am more disposed to exploring, and perhaps even experiencing, these kinds of altered states, but I am not more susceptible to believe in them. Not only because I am often critically challenged by readers and friends but because I am interested in what it means to hold to the irrational with a rational embrace, using skepticism as a compass to travel the map of the weird. One consequence of this, however, is finding myself without a home. Of those who encounter me—either in person or in what I write—the faithful don’t trust my intentions, and the skeptics think I am being too lenient.”


    Andaz London Temple Cinema

    “Temple Cinema is a shrine to the demonic, the delirious and the dangerous. In its new regular monthly slot, London’s most unique screening venue promises to dedicate itself to the dark arts of horror filmmaking. To celebrate the current horror revival and pay tribute to its heritage, Andaz London Liverpool Street and East End Film Festival are pairing the stand out titles of horror’s new wave with one of their spiritual ancestors.

    Sealed off and lost, the Andaz London hotel’s Masonic Temple was once home only to the secrets of The Freemasons, but now after its rediscovery it has become a temple to cinema too. Its lacquered thrones, marble columns and golden zodiac-adorned ceiling will echo with screams once again…

    HEREDITARY (2018) – 28 March 2019

    THE OMEN (1976) – 25 April 2019

    MANDY (2018) – 30 May 2019

    THE SHINING (1980) – 27 June 2019

    Future dates 25 July, 29 August, 26 September, 31 October, 28 November. Films to be announced soon.”

  • Profane Illuminations, April 27, 12-8pm, Einstein Auditorium, NYU; April 29, 7-11pm, Zuzu, Cambridge, MA [HT Matt Browne]

    Strange Attractor Press Zuzu Profane poster

    Strange Attractor Press MIT Profane poster

    “Two stateside gatherings in April celebrating Strange Attractor Press in New York City, and Cambridge, Massachusetts.

    27th April 12-8pm, Einstein Auditorium , NYU
    (with The Colloquium For Unpopular Culture)

    29th April, 7-11pm, Zuzu, Cambridge MA.
    (with MIT Press)

    Click the flyers above for more details.

    There will be books sales, unique ephemera and author signings at both events.

    No booking required. Join us.

    Featuring presentations by:

    Erik Davis – Welcome to the Weird

    Peter Bebergal & Gareth Branwyn* – Gaming in The Occult Imagination

    Amy Hale – Ithell Colquhoun: Genius of the Fern-Loved Gully

    Kristen Gallerneaux* – High Static Dead Lines

    Doug Skinner* – Music From Elsewhere

    Dave Tompkins* – Alligators of Your Mind

    * NY only”

  • Pole position: human body might be able to pick up on Earth’s magnetic field. Scientists say there are signs of humans having a subconscious magnetic sense” — Nicola Davis, The Guardian

    “It sounds like a power to be boasted of by the X-Men, but researchers say humans might have the ability to pick up on Earth’s magnetic field.

    Many animals, from pigeons to turtles, use it to navigate, while research has shown cattle prefer to align themselves with the field when standing in, well, a field. Even dogs make use of it – albeit when defecating.

    But while debates continue about the mechanisms behind such phenomena, it has remained unclear whether humans also have the power of magnetoreception. Now scientists say there are signs that we do.”

  • In Norway, Student Loans for Astrology. University leaders and scientists are outraged by decision of national quality assurance agency, which says it has no choice because of a law linking recognition to job prospects.” — David Matthews, Inside Higher Ed [HT Watkins Books]

    “A fight has erupted in Norway after the country’s higher education regulator agreed to accredit courses in astrology, meaning students will be able to use government loans to look for meaning in the stars.

    Norwegian scientists have criticized the decision, but the Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education (NOKUT) said that in making the ruling it was only following the law and blamed the government for not heeding its calls for stricter academic criteria.”

  • Re-writing the Future:100 years of Esoteric Modernism & Psychoanalysis, a multi-disciplinary conference, May 30 – June 1, 2019, Brunnenburg Castle & Schloß Pienzenau, Merano, Italy [HT Carlos Abler]

    Rewriting the Future conference 2019

    “In recent times, it has come to light that many revered artists, writers, poets, philosophers and performers have held esoteric world views or underpinnings. Several recent art exhibitions worldwide have highlighted this: Black Light in Barcelona, retrospectives of Leonor Fini and Leonora Carrington in New York and Mexico City, respectively, Mystical Symbolism and the visionary works of Hilma af Klint at the Guggenheim, all in just the past year.

    The field of psychoanalysis itself first began as an esoteric discipline – exploring previously uncharted territory with relatively few individuals meeting weekly at the home of Sigmund Freud. Some of Freud’s occult explorations were quite overt, as he conducted thought experiments with his daughter Anna Freud and close colleague Sandor Ferenczi late into his life. Though Freud intentionally steered the public persona of psychoanalysis away from any occult leanings, his personal work with the esoteric went on well into his twilight years. Carl Jung also explored his own psyche in secret for decades as he created his masterpiece The Red Book, which was only discovered after his death and released publicly in recent years.

    The Zeitgeist of the time is reflected in a myriad of ways: the innovative writing of T.S. Eliot, James Joyce, Ernest Hemingway; poetry of H.D.; automatic drawings of Austin Osman Spare; spirit drawings of Georgiana Houghton; accidental poems of Tristan Tzara; noise concerts of Luigi Russolo; collages of Hannah Höch; montages of Man Ray; the expressionism of Wassily Kandinsky; and early experimentation with film and photography. W.B. Yeats taught a young Ezra Pound theosophy. Piet Mondrian studied theosophy as well. The surrealists touted the theories of psychoanalysis, exploring dreamwork, automatic writing, synchronicity and chance.

    It is notable that so many cultural heavyweights, who are held in such high regard, deemed it necessary to keep their esoteric views and occult explorations hidden from the world. Clearly they felt these ideas would not be acceptable at that time. And they were probably right, as many of those figures who were more open about their views, were often shunned, denied or had aspects of their work ignored outright. It begs the question: why does society accept some aspects of the mind, but not others?

    At our current moment of cultural crisis, it makes sense to look back over the past 100 years; to reflect on the cultural Zeitgeist before the First World War – the very same time period and cultural and intellectual epicentres that birthed the field of psychoanalysis, the Dada movement and Der Blaue Reiter. Much like our times, upheaval and change were in the air. The arts and sciences were booming, as was philosophy, media and technology. Interest in theosophy, Eastern philosophies, occult and esoteric belief systems was on the rise. Society’s accepted values and consensus worldview were put into question; the status-quo challenged, refined and reformulated for a modern era.”

  • Taroetry: A Poetic Guide to the Tarot. Explore the world of tarot with the magic of poetry.” a crowdfunding effort by Hannah Gatzka; from the 20-days-to-go dept.

    “What is Taroetry?

    Taroetry is an illustrated book of rhymed poetry about tarot based on the structure of the Rider-Waite-Smith deck. In making this book, we seek to make the ritual of self-reflection through tarot accessible to all.

    This is the first publicly-available project from Arcana Obscura, an art collective grounded in tarot, poetry, and visual arts.

    Why Poetry?

    Poetry – especially rhymed poetry – is the stuff of magic in the same way as tarot is the stuff of magic. When you are new to reading tarot or when you’re reading for yourself, the right resources can make all of the difference in elevating your experience. “

  • Eternal Witchcraft — A Comics Spellbook. Eternal Witchcraft is a spellbook/anthology of witchy instructional comics for Crones and Aspiring Crones alike.” A crowdfunding effort by POMEgranate Magazine; from the 18-hours-to-go dept.

    “The goal of this Kickstarter is to fund and promote Eternal Witchcraft: a comics spellbook/anthology of witchy instructional comics for Crones and aspiring Crones alike.

    The Project

    Eternal Witchcraft features 21 up-and-coming creators, all crafting comics to bring a little more magic into your everyday life. This softcover book has 200+ pages of enchanting knowledge, both ancient and modern, all bound together in the flayed skin of our enemies (jk — it’s a beautiful and very much paper cover by Annie Lin, featuring sparkling gold foil accents!).”

Omnium Gatherum: March 26, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 26, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Opus Alchymicum, 2nd edition, “the white edition”, by J Daniel Gunther

    Gunther Opus Alchymicum 2nd white edition

    “The second edition of Opus Alchymicum is now available! This second edition is bound in white cloth and stamped in gold, so it is called the White Edition. The size is 9″ x 12″ with 56 full color pages and is accompanied with a slipcase. There are a few additions not present in the first edition.”

    “This volume relates the unique personal and spiritual journey of Gunther at a key time in his progression, resulting in a series of fascinating and transformational alchemical images which further reinforce the intimate link between the artistic and spiritual life.”

  • The Great Introduction to Astrology by Abū Maʿšar, edited, translated, &c. by Keiji Yamamoto, Charles Burnett, with David Pingree [HT Ghayat al-hakim (Picatrix) ‏]

    Yamamoto Burnett Pingree Abu Masar The Great Introduction to Astrology

    “Abū Ma’͑šar’s Great Introduction to Astrology (mid-ninth century) is the most comprehensive and influential text on astrology in the Middle Ages. In addition to presenting astrological doctrine, it provides a detailed justification for the validity of astrology and establishes its basis within the natural sciences of the philosophers. These two volumes provide a critical edition of the Arabic text; a facing English translation, which includes references to the divergences in the twelfth-century Latin translations of John of Seville and Hermann of Carinthia (Volume 1); and the large fragment of a Greek translation (edited by David Pingree). Comprehensive Arabic, English, Greek and Latin glossaries enable one to trace changes in vocabulary and terminology as the text passed from one culture to another. (Volume 2.)”

  • Going for Gold” — Dmitri Levitin, Literary Review; about the late 2018 book Newton the Alchemist: Science, Enigma, and the Quest for Nature’s ‘Secret Fire’ by William R Newman [HT Arts & Letters Daily]

    Newman Newton the Alchemist

    “‘Historians of alchemy’, wrote Herbert Butterfield in 1949, ‘seem to become tinctured with the kind of lunacy they set out to describe.’ Seventy years on, readers may believe that this gloriously rude assessment needs no updating. But what, then, are we to make of the fact that the greatest scientific hero of them all, that model of geometric rationality, Isaac Newton, devoted a great proportion of his life to the pursuit of transmutation? This was the problem that faced another titan of his discipline, the economist John Maynard Keynes, when in 1936 he acquired at auction a large number of Newton’s papers dealing with alchemy. Newton, Keynes was forced to declare, ‘was not the first of the age of reason’ but rather ‘the last of the magicians’.”

  • Calling time” — Llewelyn Morgan, Lugubelinus [HT Lili Saintcrow]

    “Time is whatever it is.

    But what a culture does with time, how it gets organised, can be one of the most revealing things about a culture. The books listed at the bottom of this post have lots of interesting things to say on the topic, but this is a blog about how the Romans organised time, and ultimately how the ordering of time became, like pretty much everything else that the Roman elite concerned themselves with, a means for political assertion and self-promotion.

    (Quite a lot of what the Romans did with time is still with us, as it happens, too.)”

  • Strange Vistas from the Occultism of Coil and Psychic TV” — Dan Siepmann, PopMatters

    “Clearly, Psychic TV considered their sculpted product to be the magickal lodestar, whereas for Coil, true ritual potency came from discovering new paths during the production process. But such approaches were necessary to conjure the divergent places each band sought for its listeners. These places manifest the three rifts that cleaved apart the bands’ artistic visions, while showcasing a final truth: occultism served Psychic TV’s means—to sate worldly desire through magick—and Coil’s ends—to step entirely inside of magick.”

  • Rendering Unconscious – Psychoanalytic Perspectives, Politics & Poetry [also, also], edited by Vanessa Sinclair, due in April

    Sinclair Rendering Unconscious

    “In times of crisis, one needs to stop and ask, “How did we get here?” Our contemporary chaos is the result of a society built upon pervasive systems of oppression, discrimination and violence that run deeper and reach further than most understand or care to realize. These draconian systems have been fundamental to many aspects of our lives, and we seem to have gradually allowed them more power. However, our foundation is not solid; it is fractured and collapsing – if we allow that. We need to start applying new models of interpretation and analysis to the deep-rooted problems at hand.

    “Rendering Unconscious” brings together international scholars, psychoanalysts, psychologists, philosophers, researchers, writers and poets; reflecting on current events, politics, the state of mental health care, the arts, literature, mythology, and the cultural climate; thoughtfully evaluating this moment of crisis, its implications, wide-ranging effects, and the social structures that have brought us to this point of urgency.

    Hate speech, Internet stalking, virtual violence, the horde mentality of the alt-right, systematic racism, the psychology of rioting, the theater of violence, fake news, the power of disability, erotic transference and counter-transference, the economics of libido, Eros and the death drive, fascist narratives, psychoanalytic formation as resistance, surrealism and sexuality, traversing genders, and colonial counterviolence are but a few of the topics addressed in this thought-provoking and inspiring volume.

    Contributions by Vanessa Sinclair, Gavriel Reisner, Alison Annunziata, Kendalle Aubra, Gerald Sand, Tanya White-Davis & Anu Kotay, Luce deLire, Jason Haaf, Simon Critchley & Brad Evans, Marc Strauss, Chiara Bottici, Manya Steinkoler, Emma Lieber, Damien Patrick Williams, Shara Hardeson, Jill Gentile, Angelo Villa, Gabriela Costardi, Jamieson Webster, Sergio Benvenuto, Craig Slee, Álvaro D. Moreira, David Lichtenstein, Julie Fotheringham, John Dall’aglio, Matthew Oyer, Jessica Datema, Olga Cox Cameron, Katie Ebbitt, Juliana Portilho, Trevor Pederson, Elisabeth Punzi & Per-Magnus Johansson, Meredith Friedson, Steven Reisner, Léa Silveira, Patrick Scanlon, Júlio Mendes Rodrigo, Daniel Deweese, Julie Futrell, Gregory J. Stevens, Benjamin Y. Fong, Emma Lieber, Katy Bohinc, Wayne Wapeemukwa, Patricia Gherovici & Cassandra Seltman, Marie Brown, Buffy Cain, Claire-Madeline Culkin, Andrew Daul, Germ Lynn, Adel Souto, and paul aster stone-tsao”

  • Becoming Dangerous: Witchy Femmes, Queer Conjurers, and Magical Rebels, edited by Katie West and Jasmine Elliott, with foreword by Kristen J Sollée; picked up by a publisher after a successful crowdfunding effort, due in April

    West Elliott Sollée Becoming Dangerous

    “The difference between the witch and the layperson is that witches already know they are powerful. The layperson may only suspect.

    Edgy and often deeply personal, the twenty-one essays collected here come from a wide variety of writers. Some identify as witches, others identify as writers, musicians, game developers, or artists. What they have in common is that they’ve created personal rituals to summon their own power in a world that would prefer them powerless. Here, they share the rituals they use to resist self-doubt, grief, and depression in the face of sexism, slut shaming, racism, patriarchy, and other systems of oppression.”

  • A YEAR IN MUSIC: 1891, music hall’s boom-de-ay heyday” — Sophia Deboick, The New European

    “Wonder and spectacle were the bywords of 1891. In March, the Great Blizzard in the south of England resulted in 15ft snowdrifts that magically transformed the landscape. It was still an age of enchantment, as indicated by the fact that Helena Blavatsky, the founder of the esoteric theosophist movement, and William Robert Woodman, co-founder of the occultist Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, of which Aleister Crowley would later become the most famous member, both died yet left still active movements behind them.”

  • Suffering for the summit: One climber’s personal & painful journey to the top of K2” — Jacqueline Cutler, New York Daily News; about One Man’s Climb: A Journey of Trauma, Tragedy, and Triumph on K2 by Adrian Hayes

    Hayes One Man's Climb

    “Just getting to the foot of K2 starts with a weeklong trek across a glacier. And once you get there, there is no there, just bleak, uninhabited space. Everything, from housing and communications to food and first aid, has to be carried in.

    It’s not a job for the faint of heart, or light of wallet.

    It never has been. The mountain wasn’t even surveyed until 1852, and the first known climbing attempt was in 1902, an expedition of upper-class mountaineers including self-proclaimed warlock Aleister Crowley. They made it to about 20,000 feet before turning back.”

  • Instagram as Archive: Blake and Digital Art Culture” — William Blake Archive

    “Exciting news: the William Blake Archive now has an Instagram. This additional platform will enable Blake’s materials to reach new audiences through a primarily visual application, bringing decades of digital archival work into the pocket-sized cellular devices of over one billion active monthly users worldwide. Both known for ease of access and for interweaving the visual with the textual, Instagram and the William Blake Archive are a natural fit for one another.”

    View this post on Instagram

    Curious about the origins of the William Blake Archive Instagram? Check out this blog post on Hell’s Printing Press, The Blog of the Blake Archive and Blake Quarterly. We’re so happy to share this project with everyone! ✨ . . . link: https://blog.blakearchive.org/2019/03/19/instagram-as-archive-blake-and-digital-art-culture/ . . . #WilliamBlake #BlakeArchive #digitalhumanities #romanticism #romanticart #illumination #illustration #BritishArt #digitalarchive #propheticart #visionaryart #dream #surreal #blake #blakean #Europeanart #arthistory #blog #blogpost #williamblakeblog #instagramarchive #digitalartculture #universityofrochester #originstory #article #post #hellsprintingpress #blakequarterly

    A post shared by William Blake Archive (@williamblakearchive) on

  • Giraffes on Horseback Salad: Salvador Dalí, the Marx Brothers, and the Strangest Movie Never Made by Josh Frank and Tim Heidecker, illustrated by Manuela Pertega [HT Hyperallergic]

    Marx Brothers Dalí Frank Heidecker Partega Giraffes on Horseback Salad

    “This lushly illustrated graphic novel re-creates a lost Marx Brothers script written by modern art icon Salvador Dali.

    Grab some popcorn and take a seat…The curtain is about to rise on a film like no other! But first, the real-life backstory: Giraffes on Horseback Salad was a Marx Brothers film written by modern art icon Salvador Dali, who’d befriended Harpo. Rejected by MGM, the script was thought lost forever. Author and lost-film buff Josh Frank unearthed the original script, and Dali’s notes and sketches for the project, tucked away in museum archives. With comedian Tim Heidecker and Spanish comics creator Manuela Pertega, he’s re-created the film as a graphic novel in all its gorgeous full-color, cinematic, surreal glory. In the story, a businessman named Jimmy (played by Harpo) is drawn to the mysterious Surrealist Woman, whose very presence changes humdrum reality into Dali-esque fantasy. With the help of Groucho and Chico, Jimmy seeks to join her fantastical world—but forces of normalcy threaten to end their romance. Includes new Marx Brothers songs and antics, plus the real-world story behind the historic collaboration.

Omnium Gatherum: March 24, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 24, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Tweet by Luna Laviolette

  • Black mould in your home can cause terrifying hallucinations of demons and ghosts. A third of Brits believe in ghosts but the solution could be more cleaning based” — Jane Lavender, Mirror UK [HT Dr. Demonology]

    “Black mould in your home could be triggering terrifying hallucinations of ghosts and demons, experts have warned.

    One in three people in Britain believes that a house can be haunted and 28 per cent think they’ve experienced a ‘supernatural presence’, according to a YouGov survey.

    But a growing number of scientists now believe toxic mould – which grows on the walls of damp homes in the UK – could be to blame.”

  • Introducing How to Think Like a Roman Emperor, free email course based on the forthcoming book How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius which is due out in April from St Martin’s Press.

    Robertson How to Think Like a Roman Emperor

    “This eLearning course contains lots of free resources based on my book How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius. It’s designed for people who haven’t read the book yet but are interested in finding out more. If you do want to get a copy of the book when it’s published, though, you’ll get even more out of these resources.

    You’ll find an interview with me, the author, as well as videos in which I read excerpts from each chapter and provide a commentary explaining the contents. There are also lots of bonus resources, including Marcus Aurelius comic strips, a quiz, and an article about my experience of writing the book, as well as some links to podcasts and other relevant interviews.

    By enrolling on this course, you’ll sign up to receive weekly reminder emails linking to each part of the content”

  • Hilma af Klint: Paintings for the Future” — Felipe Lima; commissioned for Hilma af Klint: Paintings for the Future, through April 23, 2019 at Guggenheim, New York [HT Open Culture]

    “Commissioned by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum on the occasion of the exhibition
    Hilma af Klint: Paintings for the Future
    October 12, 2018 — April 23, 2019”

  • The Essays of Frater Achad from 100th Monkey Press

    100th Monkey The Essays of Frater Achad

    “A limited hand-bound edition of a series of rare, hard to find, essays written by Frater Achad. Edition limited to 75 numbered copies. Price: US $22.95

    In 1923 Frater Achad (Charles Stansfeld Jones) wrote a series of rare, hard to find, essays for the short-lived, Los Angeles magazine, Occult Press Review. He first became involved with the magazine with the February-March issue and continued his involvement throughout 1923. Besides contributing five articles to the magazine he also developed a new cover design and became a contributing editor. Some of the articles he contributed included “Gambling with the World” and “Initiation.” Rounding out this book are an additional two articles he provided in 1923 & 1924 to the British magazine, the Occult Review.

    Each book is bound by hand and measures 8 1/2” x 11”. 55 pages. Printed in blue and black on acid-free, 24 lb. Royal Laid paper specifically chosen for this edition. Bound using a stab style binding with a soft, acid-free, wraparound white paper cover with gold threads. The spine is wrapped in a red faux suede material.

    The book includes graphics of each of the original covers of the magazines containing Frater Achad’s articles. It also includes a graphic of his “Wheel of the Tarot.”

    As an added bonus, each book comes with a 5 1/2” x 8 1/2” hand-bound copy of Frater Achad’s essay entitled “Thinking Backwards” bound in matching paper.

    Included with each book is a handsome bookplate and bookmark.”

  • Neoliberalism and its forgotten alternative. The debate between Walter Lippmann and John Dewey throughout the 1920s points to an alternative to the neoliberal world view, submerged in the subsequent war between capitalism and communism.” — David Ridley, Open Democracy

    “According to [John] Dewey, we have access to this submerged substratum of information, or ‘qualitative’ thought, through reflection; if we look deeply into our experience, we can make the connections which turn bare facts into truth, or for Dewey, into wisdom.

    All our knowledge is social, everything we know is in some way derived from the shared understandings, customs and collective experience which we have come to refer to as ‘culture’. This means that everything around us is a source of exploration and knowledge. Life itself is a learning process and the world is a classroom. This is what Dewey meant when he talked about ‘democracy as a way of life’.”

  • Mervyn Peake, an Exhibition of Certain Rare Dreams. An exhibition of extraordinary drawings, illustrations and paintings by the celebrated author of Gormenghast. The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Fine Art & Natural History, Mar 27–Sept 14, London; private view reception March 26, RSVP

    Viktor Wynd Museum Mervyn Peake

    “Viktor Wynd Requests The Pleasure of Your Company for The Opening of His Next Exhibition of artworks by Mervyn Peake. the exhibition will run until September 2019.

    Peter Winnington writes in the introduction to the exhibition catalog

    Mervyn Peake was born in China in 1911 to medical missionary parents. Educated at Eltham College, he won a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy Schools. In the summer of 1933, having completed only three of his five years, he left to join an artists’ colony on the island of Sark, where he painted intensively, producing some remarkable portraits and less remarkable landscapes. Spotted by the head of the Westminster School of Art, he was taken on to teach life drawing from early in 1935.

    Back in London, he was invited to contribute pencil portraits of well-known figures to the London Mercury; he painted both portraits and landscapes for himself, at the same time as writing poetry. He had his first major exhibition in the spring of 1938.

    With the coming of war, the Westminster School closed and Peake withdraw to the safety of a tiny village in Sussex. He applied to work as a war artist, but he was drafted into the Royal Artillery, which could find little use for him. From the moment he was called up, he started writing a work of pure imagination which was published as Titus Groan in 1946. A second volume, Gormenghast, followed in 1950, and a third, Titus Alone, in 1959. Re-issued as “Penguin Modern Classics” at the end of the 1960s, they finally found the public they needed; they have never since been out of print.

    Recognizing Peake’s gift for illustrating nonsense and the fantastic, Chatto & Windus brought out his Hunting of the Snark in 1941, followed by The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, which sold out within a week of publication in 1943.

    It was a Swedish publisher that commissioned his Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass; his drawings have been called the definitive modern interpretation of Carroll’s books. Nineteen forty-eight saw the publication of one of Peake’s illustrated books for children, Letters from a Lost Uncle (which was remaindered). In the same year he illustrated Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde for the Folio Society, and he started illustrating Bleak House by Charles Dickens, but the publisher abandoned the project. His Treasure Island (1949) was the last of his great illustrated works.

    In 1950, the year in which Gormenghast was published, Peake returned to teaching and, for lack of commissions, he devoted much time to writing a play, which had a very brief run at the Arts Theatre in 1957. By then, he was suffering from early onset Parkinson’s Disease, from which he died in 1968.

    As an illustrator, Peake is remembered mainly for his black-and- white work. This exhibition reminds us that, given better means of reproduction, he would have been known for his coloured illustrations too.”

  • Catafalque: Carl Jung and the End of Humanity by Peter Kingsley

    Kingsley Catafalque

    Catafalque offers a revolutionary new reading of the great psychologist Carl Jung as mystic, gnostic and prophet for our time.

    This book is the first major re-imagining of both Jung and his work since the publication of the Red Book in 2009–and is the only serious assessment of them written by a classical scholar who understands the ancient Gnostic, Hermetic and alchemical foundations of his thought as well as Jung himself did. At the same time it skillfully tells the forgotten story of Jung’s relationship with the great Sufi scholar, Henry Corbin, and with Persian Sufi tradition.

    The strange reality of the Red Book, or “New Book” as Carl Jung called it, lies close to the heart of Catafalque. In meticulous detail Peter Kingsley uncovers its great secret, hidden in plain sight and still–as if by magic–unrecognized by all those who have been unable to understand this mysterious, incantatory text.

    But the hard truth of who Jung was and what he did is only a small part of what this book uncovers. It also exposes the full extent of that great river of esoteric tradition that stretches all the way back to the beginnings of our civilization. It unveils the surprising realities behind western philosophy, literature, poetry, prophecy–both ancient and modern.

    In short, Peter Kingsley shows us not only who Carl Jung was but who we in the West are as well. Much more than a brilliant spiritual biography, Catafalque holds the key to understanding why our western culture is dying. And, an incantatory text in its own right, it shows the way to discovering what we in these times of great crisis must do.”

  • New Antiquities: Transformations of Ancient Religion in the New Age and Beyond edited by Dylan M Burns and Almut-barbara Renger

    Burns Renger New Antiquities

    “Just as we speak of ‘dead’ languages, we say that religions ‘die out.’; Yet sometimes, people try to revive them, today more than ever. New Antiquities addresses this phenomenon through critical examination of how individuals and groups appeal to, reconceptualize, and reinvent the religious world of the ancient Mediterranean as they attempt to legitimize developments in contemporary religious culture and associated activity. Drawing from the disciplines of religious studies, archaeology, history, philology, and anthropology, New Antiquities explores a diversity of cultic and geographic milieus, ranging from Goddess Spirituality to Neo-Gnosticism, from rural Oregon to the former Yugoslavia. As a survey of the reception of ancient religious works, figures, and ideas in later twentieth-century and contemporary alternative religious practice, New Antiquities will interest classicists, Egyptologists, and historians of religion of many stripes, particularly those focused on modern Theosophy, Gnosticism, Neopaganism, New Religious Movements, Magick, and Occulture. The book is written in a lively and engaging style that will appeal to professional scholars and advanced undergraduates as well as lay scholars.”

  • On the Road with Thomas Merton. Film by Jeremy Seifert, Essay by Fred Bahnson” — Emergence Magazine [HT Robert Macfarlane]

    “In May 1968, Christian mystic Thomas Merton undertook a pilgrimage to the American West. Fifty years later, filmmaker Jeremy Seifert and writer Fred Bahnson set out to follow Merton’s path, retracing the monk’s journey across the landscape. Amid stunning backdrops of ocean, redwood, and canyon, the film features the faces and voices of people Merton encountered. The essay offers a more intimate meditation on Merton’s life and the relevance of the spiritual journey today.”

Omnium Gatherum: March 18, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 18, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Raise the Spell: An Arsenal of Thelemic Ceremony by M Dionysius Rogers, aka Hermetic Library Fellow T Polyphilus

    Rogers Polyphilus Raise the Spell

    “This volume collects more than a dozen original rituals for individuals, groups, and households. All of them have been composed during the last quarter century, and they have been successfully enacted by Thelemites worldwide. Although the ceremonies are consistent with the teachings of the legacy orders of Thelemic Magick (OTO and A∴A∴), they are operable without membership or authority in any such society. Ceremonies include ones oriented to the Thelemic liturgical year, original work along the fundamental lines of magick as laid down in traditional canons of Thelemic ritual, and domestic rituals for Thelemites”

  • Meet Romania’s Very Internet-Savvy Witch Community” — Lydia Horne, Wired [HT Mary Sativa]

    Horne Wired Meet Romania's very Internet-savvy witch community

    “Consider it globalization of the supernatural: Thanks to the proliferation of the internet, the Romanian witch community—also known as the vrăjitoare—has migrated their ancient practice onto the web. Using social media to livestream rituals or to video chat with clients for fortune readings, witch entrepreneurs are better able to grow their business using self-referential devices (clothing, jewelry, idols) to effectively market the storied mysticism of Roma women to searching souls.”

  • Tweet by ∞★ △ndy Paciorek ★∞

  • Chilling Adventures of Sabrina: Part 2 | Official Trailer from Netflix, releases April 5; trailer featuring the track Cherry Bomb by The Runaways [HT Polygon]

  • Belief in aliens could be America’s next religion. ‘American Cosmic’ explores how the once-fringe phenomenon has taken root among the powerful.” — Clare Coffey, The Outline; about American Cosmic: UFOs, Religion, Technology by D W Pasulka [also]

    Pasulka American Cosmic

    “Pasulka’s book makes the argument that the religion of the UFO is also the religion of technology, and it is a convincing one. In part, this refers to technology’s role in disseminating and popularizing the UFO encounter. Pop culture hits like Star Wars, 2001: A Space Odyssey and The X-Files have provided a narrative structure that patterns individual experiences of inexplicable phenomena, the way that a Catholic’s mystical experiences might be patterned and interpreted through the lens of Church Doctrine.”

  • US detects huge meteor explosion” — Paul Rincon, BBC News [also]

    “A huge fireball exploded in the Earth’s atmosphere in December, according to Nasa.

    The blast was the second largest of its kind in 30 years, and the biggest since the fireball over Chelyabinsk in Russia six years ago.

    But it went largely unnoticed until now because it blew up over the Bering Sea, off Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula.

    The space rock exploded with 10 times the energy released by the Hiroshima atomic bomb.

    Lindley Johnson, planetary defence officer at Nasa, told BBC News a fireball this big is only expected about two or three times every 100 years.”

  • Astronomers discover 83 supermassive black holes at the edge of the universe. Lurking in the distant corners of space are 83 monster black holes that can teach us about the early days of the cosmos.” — Jackson Ryan, CNET [HT Slashdot]

    “A team of international astronomers have been hunting for ancient, supermassive black holes — and they’ve hit the motherlode, discovering 83 previously unknown quasars.”

  • This medieval astrolabe is officially world’s oldest known such instrument. Mariners used the instruments to navigate by the stars while at sea.” — Jeniffer Ouellette, Ars Technica

    Ouellette Ars Technica oldest astrolabe

    “A mariner’s astrolabe recovered from the wreck of one of Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama’s ships is now officially the oldest known such artifact, according to a new paper in the International Journal of Nautical Archaeology. The device is even going into the Guinness Book of World Records, along with the ship’s bell, now that the age of both artifacts has been independently verified.”

  • The Emotion Police” — Agnes Callard, The Point [HT Arts & Letters Daily]

    “Who could possibly have the gall to tell the entire human race what it should and should not feel? Philosophers, that’s who! Philosophers have been legislating emotional life since the time of the Stoics, and the newest vanguard of the movement is currently at work right under your noses. Allow me to introduce you to the Emotion Police.”

  • The Books That Wouldn’t Die. They’re alive, despite being rebutted, criticized, and cast out of the disciplines from which they came!” — Lorraine Daston and Sharon Marcus, The Chronicle of Higher Learning [HT Arts & Letters Daily]

    “Scholars rarely write books like these anymore: ambitious, erudite works that boldly set forth big, original ideas but were written as much for other scholars as for a broad public.

    These are the Undead Texts. Their ambition and success inevitably made these works targets of specialist rebuttals. There is probably not a single claim they make that subsequent scholarship has not queried, criticized, or refuted. Yet these texts refuse to die. Novices and experts alike remain susceptible to the spell they cast.”

Omnium Gatherum: March 15, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 15, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Of Cosmogonic Eros from Theion Publishing

    Klages Theion Of Cosmogonic Eros

    “Theion Publishing is proud to release the first-ever English translation of one of the most important metaphysical works of the 20th century: Of Cosmogonic Eros by the German pagan philosopher and Gnostic Ludwig Klages. This monograph is dedicated entirely to an in-depth examination of the nature of Eros and states of ecstasies as they relate to a gnostic return to primordial states of experience. Here Klages presents a pandaemonic vision of becoming which is inextricably linked to an Eros whose elemental power shatters everyday consciousness and mates the individual to the secrets of the cosmos. The author seeks to restore Eros to his true status and function by carefully distilling his essence against all falsifications and distortions. Showing how Eros is related to Thanatos and integral to every true cultus of the dead and ancestral worship, Klages leaves no doubt that only the Eroto-Gnostic holds the keys to authentic Life and the daemonic empowerment of the Cosmos.

    Of Cosmogonic Eros is an indispensable work for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the nature of Eros and ecstasies and the metaphysical conflicts we face in modern times. For researchers and practitioners of sexual esoteric mysteries and Eroto-Gnostic systems of attainment this book must be considered a treasure chest of insights and knowledge. It is a true rune of an Eros of whom Klages says that

    “He can be roused while awake as if in the most stupefying dream. He celebrates his orgies beneath the breeze of spring storms, in the light of a star-studded heaven, in a hailstone shower, on a flaming mountain ridge, in the raging surf, in the lightning flash of “first love”, but not least in the embrace of fate that smites its carrier.”

    Of Cosmogonic Eros greatly impressed and influenced thinkers and artists like Walter Benjamin and Alfred Kubin but also German esoteric circles and literaries such as the great Hermann Hesse who wrote that in this book “the nearly unutterable has been forged into words”. Spiritual teachers like the Tibetan Buddhist Anagarika Govinda and occult masters like David Beth received important impulses from this empowering work.

    This first English edition of Of Cosmogonic Eros will also feature a substantial contextualized introduction by Professor Paul Bishop of the University of Glasgow and the first-ever English translation of parts of Alfred Schuler’s esoteric talks on the nature and essence of the spiritual light directly relevant to Of Cosmogonic Eros. Alfred Schuler, who formed the core of the Kosmiker-Kreis with Klages, was a magician and mystagogue whose oracular language and visions provided much of the esoteric symbolism of Klages’ work. It was this vilified, feared but also admired correspondent of Papus and self-confessed ‘ultimus paganaorum’ (last pagan) who brought forth such mysterious concepts as Blutleuchte, the blood-lamp. The Auric ‘deluxe’ edition will include an exclusive booklet with an essay by David Beth entitled “Katabasis and Eroto-Gnosis: A short consideration.””

  • American Gods, Season 2, premieres March 10 on STARZ

    “The epic war of the gods begins when American Gods premieres March 10 on STARZ. Where will you stand?”

  • The Commonplace Deck, a limited-edition set of hand-printed oracle cards, crowdfunding effort by Nell Latimer, limited to 50 decks

    Latimer Commonplace Book deck

    “This set of 30 cards originates from a commonplace book. That is to say it was formed from a collection of interlinked illustrations, sketches, old photographs, notes and observations gathered and brought together here for divinatory purpose and transformed into a set of small handmade lino prints. It is named ‘commonplace’ after the method of collation and as the pictures you will find on the cards, at first glance, may seem every day or ordinary. “

  • Séance by Tyu Orphinae

    Orphinae Séance

    “A minimalistic card game for 4 to 6 players.

    Your group has summoned a dangerous spirit, and the only way to banish it is to sacrifice a person among you. Your goal as a player is therefore to survive, and make sure someone else takes the blow.”

  • Sound Waves May Fall Up in Gravity Instead of Down. New findings suggest that ordinary sound has negative gravitational mass.” — Charles Q Choi, Inside Science [HT Wes Unruh]

    “The sound of a sonic boom may produce about the same magnitude of gravitational pull as a 10-milligram weight, a new study finds. Oddly, the findings also suggest the pull is in the opposite direction of the gravitational pull generated by normal matter, meaning sound waves might fall up instead of down in Earth’s gravitational field.”

  • A quantum experiment suggests there’s no such thing as objective reality. Physicists have long suspected that quantum mechanics allows two observers to experience different, conflicting realities. Now they’ve performed the first experiment that proves it.” — Emerging Technology from the arXiv, MIT Technology Review

    “Last year, however, physicists noticed that recent advances in quantum technologies have made it possible to reproduce the Wigner’s Friend test in a real experiment. In other words, it ought to be possible to create different realities and compare them in the lab to find out whether they can be reconciled.

    And today, Massimiliano Proietti at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh and a few colleagues say they have performed this experiment for the first time: they have created different realities and compared them. Their conclusion is that Wigner was correct—these realities can be made irreconcilable so that it is impossible to agree on objective facts about an experiment.”

  • Polish Catholics attended Marina Abramović’s exhibition opening to pray in protest.” — Wallace Ludel, Artsy

    “Marina Abramović’s touring retrospective has arrived at Poland’s Centre of Contemporary Art Znaki Czasu, and some locals aren’t happy about it. A Polish Facebook group called Zawierzam Maryi, which translates to “I Entrust to Mary,” published a post last week attacking Abramović’s “Satanic vernissage” and urging Catholics around the country to protest the exhibition.”

  • Visualize pitch like John Coltrane with this mystical image” — Peter Kirn, CDM

    Kirn Coltrane tone circle

    “Some musicians see Islamic mysticism; some the metaphysics of Einstein. But whether spiritual, theoretical, or both, even one John Coltrane pitch wheel is full of musical inspiration.”

  • Hilma af Klint and the birth of abstract art” — Sam Ben-Meir, San Diego Jewish World

    “Af Klint was a formally trained and respected portrait and landscape painter in Stockholm, who as a young woman became involved in spiritualism, theosophy, as well as Rosicrucianism. By 1906, af Klint was creating abstract paintings, many years before Vasily Kandinsky and Piet Mondrian – however she kept them private, maintaining that the world was not yet ready to see her work; and in fact she requested that they not be seen for twenty years following her death. We can see the Rosicrucian influence in this decision: a guiding principle of the spiritual movement was its anticipation of a “universal reformation of mankind,” when a long hidden, secret science will finally be received by humanity.”

  • Thich Nhat Hanh’s final mindfulness lesson: how to die peacefully. ‘Letting go is also the practice of letting in, letting your teacher be alive in you,’ says a senior disciple of the celebrity Buddhist monk and author.” — Eliza Barclay, VOX; in conversation with Phap Dung

    “It’s a beautiful message, to see ourselves as a stream, as a lineage, and it is the deepest teaching in Buddhism: non-self. We are empty of a separate self, and yet at the same time, we are full of our ancestors.

    Letting go is a practice not only when you reach 90. It’s one of the highest practices. This can move you toward equanimity, a state of freedom, a form of peace. Waking up each day as a rebirth, now that is a practice.”

  • À Tarbes, des Gilets jaunes saccagent le temple des Francs-Maçons” — Delphine Pereira, La Dépêche

    Pereira La Dépêche Le temple des Francs Maçons

    “Dans la nuit de samedi à dimanche, en marche de la mobilisation nocturne, des Gilets jaunes ont violemment dégradé le temple maçonnique de Tarbes. Ils ont notamment dérobé, puis restitué des épées et cassé du mobilier.”

    In the night from Saturday to Sunday, in the march of the nocturnal mobilization, yellow Vests violently degraded the Masonic temple of Tarbes. In particular, they stole, then returned swords and broke furniture.

  • High Glamour; Magical Clothing and Talismanic Fashion” — Charlotte Rogers [HT Scarlet Imprint]

    Rogers Costin High Glamour Magical Clothing and Talismanic Fashion

    “So why the appropriation of magical symbolism at this particular point in time?

    Occult glamour tends to be prestige orientated. The mainstream and less well heeled can affect traditional or folk magic influenced imagery but only the immensely wealthy could afford the fashionable high luxe translation of the occult and high magic. From the bohemian middle classes and the intelligentsia who were beautifully robed members of the last century’s legendary occult group The Golden Dawn, to the later parading of counter cultural heroes such as filmmaker Kenneth Anger, singer Marianne Faithful and cult author Anais Nin, they all represented people who stood apart from the proverbial ‘common man’ and for various reasons could be seen to be elevated above them.

    I’d tend to agree that using pagan and magical symbolism in commercial areas such as fashion is a surface level affectation but I also view this as being symptomatic of something deeper; an indication of the switching roles of what constitutes the outsider and what constitutes the norm. Perhaps this symbolism is representative of empowerment for the little people and lends itself well to being used as banner, much as the anonymous mask did for protesters, albeit with more dogma attached.

    The fact that financial megaliths such as the fashion industry have got in on the act is a sign that they see that this symbolism smacks of cool, anarchy and individuality, and this may well have the knock on effect of rendering perception of these beliefs to be malleable, visual superficialities.”

  • Witchcraft writings” — Roy Booth, Talking Humanities [HT The Warburg Institute]

    “The European witchcraft panic began alongside and was fuelled by the new medium of printed books.”

  • 7 Forgotten Women Surrealists Who Deserve To Be Remembered. Always cherchez la femme, people.” — Priscilla Frank, Huffington Post; written “in anticipation of” Sotheby’s Cherchez la femme: Women and Surrealism exhibition from 2015

    “The names most often associated with surrealism, the avant-garde cultural movement born in the 1920s, include Max Ernst, Salvador Dalí, Man Ray, Hans Arp, Marcel Duchamp and Yves Tanguy, among others.

    Surprise, surprise, they’re all men.

    In anticipation of this much-needed exhibition, here are seven forgotten surrealist artists who deserve to be remembered.

    1. Dorothea Tanning (1910-2012)

    2. Bridget Bate Tichenor (1917-1990)

    3. Toyen (1902-1980)

    4. Kay Sage (1898-1963)

    5. Leonor Fini (1907-1996)

    6. Dora Maar (1907-1997)

    7. Stella Snead (1910-2006)”

Omnium Gatherum: March 6, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 6, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Portuguese language and literature on the rise in China” — Wang Qi, Global Times

    “Although Portuguese literature is not particularly well known in China, this does not mean that there are no Chinese fans of Portuguese literature. At the same time, there are also many people who are working hard to promote Portuguese literature in China and advance Chinese-Portuguese cultural exchanges.

    But another name that cannot be avoided is Fernando Pessoa. The great author is one of the most popular Portuguese writers in China. On Chinese media review site Douban, there are 841 members in the readers group for Pessoa, almost as many as the 1,289 members in Douban’s Shakespeare group.

    With more than 6,000 comments and an overall score of 9.0/10, Pessoa’s The Book of Disquiet is his most popular work among Chinese readers on the platform.

    “Reading Pessoa is like doing a nerve massage, very comfortable,” wrote one user, while another commented: ‘If you are going to leave home for half a year, you only need to bring this book with you.'”

  • Some Enchanted Evenings, a trio of short plays by Don Nigro, featuring Christina Augello, Mar 8 — Mar 23, Exit Stage Left, San Francisco [HT Datebook]

    Join Christina Augello—EXIT Theatre’s founding Artistic Director—on a exploration of three playful one-acts by contemporary playwright, Don Nigro. Take a stroll through the enchanted woods in The Garden, embark on a journey with world-renowned spiritualist Mme. Blavatsky, and hear of sweet love and sweeter revenge in A Discoverie of Witchcraft. An unforgettable evening of mystery, mirth, and a touch of the macabre. Directed by Amanda Ortmayer.

  • Wrestlenomicon! [Also], a crowdfunding effort by Arc Dream Publishing [HT Dread Singles Oops All Deadlines! Edition]

    Arc Dream Kickstarter Wrestlenomicon


    A card game of the Great Old Ones fighting over the end of the world. Cthulhu! Hastur! Only ONE can rule the apocalypse!

    Fire Opal Games and Arc Dream Publishing bring you the grudge match to end them all!

    Become a Great Old One and slam, smash, and obliterate your opponent. Wrestlenomicon is a throw-down to the doom. This furious card game of squicky battles sets up in seconds and plays in minutes—or longer, if tactics are your thing. This is the definition of brainy beer-and-pretzels fun, with plenty of tentacles.

    The Brawl of Cthulhu!

    Each deck of cards represents a unique Great Old One. The core game includes a deck for CTHULHU—the Ageless Abomination! the South Seas Smasher!—and another for HASTUR, the insane and unspeakable force behind the King in Yellow. More Great Old Ones are coming.”

  • High Weirdness: Drugs, Esoterica, and Visionary Experience in the Seventies by Erik Davis, from MIT Press, due in July

    Davis High Weirdness

    “An exploration of the emergence of a new psychedelic spirituality in the work of Philip K. Dick, Terence McKenna, and Robert Anton Wilson.

    A study of the spiritual provocations to be found in the work of Philip K. Dick, Terence McKenna, and Robert Anton Wilson, High Weirdness charts the emergence of a new psychedelic spirituality that arose from the American counterculture of the 1970s. These three authors changed the way millions of readers thought, dreamed, and experienced reality―but how did their writings reflect, as well as shape, the seismic cultural shifts taking place in America?

    In High Weirdness, Erik Davis―America’s leading scholar of high strangeness―examines the published and unpublished writings of these vital, iconoclastic thinkers, as well as their own life-changing mystical experiences. Davis explores the complex lattice of the strange that flowed through America’s West Coast at a time of radical technological, political, and social upheaval to present a new theory of the weird as a viable mode for a renewed engagement with reality.”

  • 7 years ago, Google set out to find what makes the ‘perfect’ team — and what they found shocked other researchers” — Gary Burnison, CNBC Make It

    “You don’t have to be one or the other. Having both pragmatic and strong relationship-building traits can increase the value you bring to a team. So whether you’re left brained or right brained, it’s possible to adopt both traits. Here’s how:

    If you’re right brained:

    Develop a strategic mindset. Know and understand what drives company to success.

    Be known for something. Do you have deep expertise in relevant areas? (i.e., financial acumen, scientific expertise or even highly specialized knowledge such as tax law or M&A accounting). Be proactive in mastering them.

    Practice tackling complex problems. This is especially helpful with those tricky interview questions that Google is famous for. Use those linear thinking skills to your advantage by diving deeply into issues.

    If you’re left brained:

    Develop learning agility. Instead of defaulting to the “tried and true” (which pragmatists tend to do), be open to trying varied approaches and new ideas.

    Find joy in ambiguity. Practice coping with uncertainty and making decisions without having all the information beforehand.

    Put your social leadership skills to the test. When was the last time you motivated influenced others or deeply connected with your teammates? You might come to find that you actually enjoy it.

    Teams don’t just happen by bringing people together in the same room or connecting them via Skype. When you understand yourself by taking a “good look in the mirror,” you can be the change you want to see in both your team and your company.”

  • Tweet by Aventura Obscura

  • Haiti’s explosive Rite of Spring: from pagan Russia to vodou ritual” — Lyndsey Winship, The Guardian; about The Rite of Spring / Gianni Schicchi, Opera North, in association with Phoenix Dance Theatre, Mar 8–Mar 22, touring in the UK [HT Alkistis Dimech]

    Opera North Rite of Spring

    “Saintus draws on the rituals of vodou in his first UK commission, for Leeds-based Phoenix Dance Theatre. His Rite of Spring will be performed in a double bill with Opera North, accompanied by their orchestra. Saintus was tentative at first, having never worked with a classical orchestra, but he felt a surprising link between this story of pagan Russia (the ritual sacrifice of a “chosen” girl to the gods of the harvest), and the roots of his own culture.”

  • What It’s Like to Smoke Salvia for Science. I was the final volunteer in the world’s first brain imaging study on salvia divinorum.” — Daniel Oberhaus, Motherboard [HT Slashdot]

    “Although I’ve had several unpleasant salvia experiences myself, I recently volunteered to be a participant in the first-ever brain imaging study on salvinorin A, the main psychoactive compound in the salvia plant. Only a handful of salvia studies have ever been conducted on human subjects and this study was the first time that researchers were able to watch the brain as it was tripping on salvinorin.

    ‘This is the first step off the cliff into the void,’ Fred Barrett, a cognitive neuroscientist at Johns Hopkins University and the lead researcher on the salvia trial, told me. ‘This will essentially be setting the roadmap of where future [salvia] research will take us.'”

  • ‘Be yourself’ is terrible advice. Take a better lesson from philosophy and me, a reformed loudmouth” — Leah Finnegan, The Outline

    “Luckily for everyone, I started going to therapy, and it was during one of my first few sessions that my kind therapist who gives me all of my article ideas told me that the consequences that came from what I thought was “being myself” could be avoided by simply not being what I thought was “being myself,” mostly because the former self was a huge asshole. Trying to be authentic did not reveal an immutable self so much as produce one — one I no longer cared to be.

    It has taken me three years to fully process this, but I think I am good with it now, which means I can tell you why “be yourself” is such terrible advice.”

  • Good Omens – Official Trailer; series premiere May 31, 2019, from Amazon Prime Video

    “With Armageddon just days away, the armies of Heaven and Hell are amassing and The Four Horsemen are ready to ride. Aziraphale, an angel, and Crowley, a demon, agree to join forces to find the missing Anti-Christ and to stop the war that will end everything. Based on the best-selling novel by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, Good Omens follows an unlikely duo and their quest to save the world. New Series premiere May 31, 2019.”

Omnium Gatherum: March 5, 2019

An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for March 5, 2019

If you’d like to participate, head over to Omnium Gatherum on the BBS, or suggest something.

  • Five things to know about Here by Jon and Roy. Victoria’s rootsy crew Jon and Roy release their latest album Here, as well as spinoff projects.” — STUART DERDEYN, The London Freedom Press

    Twin Temple Bring Your Their Signature Sound Satanic Doo-Wap

    “Twin Temple: Bring You Their Signature Sound . . . Satanic Doo-Wop (Rise Above Records): In retrospect, it seems surprising that another act hasn’t already tried this idea. Because what could be better than mixing Alexandra James’ big, brassy torch of a voice with pure late Fifties/swinging Sixties soundtracks and lyrics right out of Aleister Crowley’s library. You’ve got the soul declaration of Lucifer, My Love, the naughty declaration of The Devil (Didn’t Make Me Do It) or the love ballad Let’s Hang Together to swing your partner to, and perhaps even get spellbound. Quality camp and the most obvious band to perform in an episode of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.”

  • SYMPATHY FOR THE BEAST: Songs from the Poems of Aleister Crowley by Twink & the Technicolour Dream (featuring Jon Povey) [HT PunkNews.org, THEE PSYCHEDELICATESSEN]

    Twink and the Technicolour Dream Sympathy for the Beast

  • The Angel-Evoking Tarot. A complete Tarot deck evoking the 72 Angels of the Kabbalah and 6 awe-inspiring Archangels., a crowdfunding effort by Travis McHenry

    McHenry The Angel-Evoking Tarot

    “The Angel-Evoking Tarot is nothing like a traditional deck of “Angel Cards.” The 72 Angels of the Kabbalah (or Shem HaMephorash) are extremely powerful heavenly beings that provide assistance to mortals while also ruling over their Hellish counterparts, the 72 Demons of the Goetia.

    When summoning an angel, their sigil (a kind of esoteric calling card) is supposed to be drawn on a piece of pure virgin parchment in red ink. To echo this color palette, the cards themselves are made to look like fresh, pure parchment that has just been cut from the skin of a newborn lamb. The borders of each card are deep crimson, which creates a striking contrast.

    The magical symbols are real.

    The artwork is hauntingly divine.

    These aren’t your Aunt Doreen’s angel cards… “

  • Help Genesis Breyer P-Orridge Pt 2! is a health crowdfunding effort by Chandra Shulka for Genesis P-Orridge [HT Jason Louv]

    Help Genesis Breyer P-Orridge Pt 2

    “Genesis STILL needs your help!

    YES HELLO Dearest friends. Genesis P-Orridge is not doing better and is faced with surmounted medical/hospital debt causing h/er to lose most if not all of the money raised for h/er despite medicaid, s/he is still faced with bills, the cost of living and has to pay for the instruments like an oxygen concentrator and oxygen from avoiding having to live in a hospital permanently since PTV3, h/er main source of income, has been put on hold indefinitely. Though the last fundraiser held by Douglas Rushkoff (Thank you Douglas!) helped pay off debt, most of it is dissolved. You haven’t heard from h/er because she has been in ICU this week and nearly died due to total kidney failure and on dialysis for 3 full days. We are planning on having a fundraiser for h/er again and a series of benefit concerts in different cities. Stay tuned. H/er battles are still UP hill. THANK YOU.”

  • Rob Solomon, CEO of GoFundMe, quoted in “GoFundMe CEO: ‘Gigantic Gaps’ In Health System Showing Up In Crowdfunding” — Rachel Bluth, Kaiser Health News [HT Justin Martin]

    “It saddens me that this is a reality. Every single day on GoFundMe we see the huge challenges people face. Their stories are heartbreaking.

    The system is terrible. It needs to be rethought and retooled. Politicians are failing us. Health care companies are failing us. Those are realities. I don’t want to mince words here. We are facing a huge potential tragedy. We provide relief for a lot of people. But there are people who are not getting relief from us or from the institutions that are supposed to be there. We shouldn’t be the solution to a complex set of systemic problems. They should be solved by the government working properly, and by health care companies working with their constituents. We firmly believe that access to comprehensive health care is a right and things have to be fixed at the local, state and federal levels of government to make this a reality.”

  • ‘Elixir of Immortality’ Uncovered in 2,000-Year-Old Chinese Tomb” — George Dvorsky, Gizmodo [HT Michael M. Bind Trump Hughes]

    Dvorsky Gizmodo Elixir of Immortality

    “A yellowish liquid found in a bronze pot dating back some 2,000 years is not wine, as Chinese archaeologists initially thought. It’s actually an “elixir of immortality” concocted during ancient times.

    But as Xinhua points out in an update to this discovery, further lab work has shown that the substance isn’t wine at all. The liquid is primarily comprised of potassium nitrate and alunite—the main ingredients of a life-enriching elixir documented in ancient Taoist texts.”