Thursday, August 18, 2011

"One or Two Books."

As Found by VVF on "The 4Chan".

Look, if you're between the ages of 25 - 50 and in the course of a discussion, you try to suggest I have only read one or two books on some subject or another, I'm going to verbally abuse you. I have tried to be patient with certain folks and that patience has been exhausted.

If I have only read one or two books on a subject, I will tell you. If you want to know my source material or where the basis of my thoughts spring, again: ask me and I will tell you.

If you, on the other hand, pull some "you're under 30 years of age and therefore utterly ignorant" bullshit with me, I will turn you into verbal mincemeat for fun and then maybe point 12 pissed off kids in your direction, so they can troll you until you never engage in that behavior again. It isn't just disrespectful: it's obnoxious. Believe me, I can easily cite you to death if I know you're wrong. And I really will joyously do it. I prefer not to, however.

Caveat lector: if you've only actually read one or two books, there is no harm in admitting it. Helpful individuals will point you in the direction of work or works that may be beneficial to you.

(Why did I add that image to this entry? Largely because later tonight I might use the picture VVF found of Bruce Lee as a Green Lantern, in a bit of commentary.)


Morgan Drake Eckstein said...

It sounds as annoying as the "you are not really an initiate, therefore you do not know the truth" line of arguing.

Jack Faust said...

It is an old meme which needs to die.

I won't actually unleash any trolls knowingly, though. I'm just being hyperbolic.

And yeah - the statement shares certain similarities with other ones...

Jason Miller, said...

Look sonny, You have only read a few dozen books on the subject, been initiated, tested your theory through experiment and application, achieved noticeable results in both outer practical change and internal growth.

You are still under 30 though, so you don't know shit.

AND you don't have the super secret pronunciation guide to the demonic enns, so why are you even opening your mouth:-)

Gordon said...

haters gon' hate, buddy.

I, for one, hang off your every word.

marginaleye said...

I am reminded of the hardy Christian ascetics who lived in isolated hermitages and proto-monastic communities out on the fringes of the Egyptian desert in late classical antiquity, and spent long years reading, re-reading, and meditating deeply upon a few precious hand-copied books. What kind of reading? What kind of books?

Jack Faust said...

@Gordon: You're too kind!

@Jason: Well... Fair enough. LOL. I do need those super-seekrit Demonic Enns... If only I had those, or the Octavio, I could rule all reality! (Lol.)

@Marginal Eye: I realize your question is rhetorical, but I'm going to be obnoxious and answer it anyway. That depends on the time period and the region.

But I think the quality of revisiting the same material is a good one, actually. While I often read a massive number of things at once - sometimes upwards of four books in a span of a few days, read side-by-side - I also find myself encountering material which "sticks." I revisit that material repeatedly, most of the time. I may go a few months or even a year or two before returning to it: seeing what I missed, trying to see where my opinions, feelings, or understanding of a given subject has changed. Sometimes I've done this with material that I initially hated and discovered that I didn't feel the same way any more. It's as if the context has changed, or as if there were lines of information I simply didn't process for one reason or another.

And I feel the same way about magical techniques and fundamentals: I actually think that it's really good for one's emotional health and magical career to take periods off where you do nothing but meditate and cleanse. I normally start such periods with Oaths to Saturn and regret them within a week of it beginning. But in the long run, it's been more beneficial than not doing, as I've suddenly noticed mistakes I was consistently making, or errors in my judgment that I was too busy at one time or another to notice.

And honestly? I think many others do the same thing. I have a hard time believing that it hasn't always been so for most spiritual or mystical practices to some degree or another. You consult the thoughts of your fellows, learn to deal with altered states of consciousness, and then you begin a circular process of revisiting it all over a span of time.

Did I get that right? Or am I way off about what you meant?