Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Quick Note

As I was reading Moloch's recent commentary regarding what he sees as the newest CM fad, a moment of fear struck me when I read this:
While it does not hurt to involve some things such as giving offerings to Spirits in Evocations, even though the bibles of such things (re: the grimoires) do not mention it, too many CM’s want to copy how things are done in the African Traditional Religions and then claim it as something they’ve been doing for years.
 Valentine has, clearly, recently dragged me into a discussion I plan to continue (most likely tonight at a certain period of time), but let me take a moment to point out that this is the reason I don't normally try to discuss certain subjects. I do not want you thinking these are necessarily practices I have made use of, or that I believe I completely understand what I'm looking at (honestly? Some of it looks very, very alien).

So, just to be clear: I don't practice voodoo, hoodoo, obeah, Palo, or Santeria. I do try to keep myself from being a completely ignorant dick, however, and that requires a bit of looking into things. Please do not, at any point, think I'm claiming any type of expertise or that these subjects have always been a part of my practices. I did try Obi divination even as a late teen, but I recently discovered while reading Obi: Oracle of Cuban Santeria by Ocha'ni Lele... that I was doing it wrong 100% of the time. Black and Hyatt (Urban Voodoo, P. 130-133) seem to have conveniently forgotten to mention that when one is doing the divination technique they are also communing with a spirit. This throws any attempt at divination I've ever tried with the system out the window, because I was treating my four coins (don't start, I already know) as if they were just descriptors... And I definitely didn't try to tie them to the spirit, or anything else.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Away.

Off to visit Other Places and Other Friends for the weekend.

The normal insanity will resume in 3 days or so...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Gift for the Black Dog


It shall be altered. But its mere purchase just caused a rather significant change in the atmosphere.

Oi, Valentine & Kenaz: Afro-carribean spirit bottles: what do you normally put in 'em? Just out of curiosity. I may not try it. But...

Note to All: Should you ever gain a spirit that helps you out, a familiar and trust-worthy (to a degree) sort of one, and they tell you I want that when you see an object... Get it for them.

II. In Brief

(Elongated, edited & hopefully more coherent, potentially less geeky, & hopefully less rambling version to come for the other blog.)


Are You Now, or Have You Ever Been, a Member of the Holy Discordian Inquisition?

Every system has flaws. I don't say this with a reference to magical systems of thought – at least not yet. I mean this in a technical sense: think of the computer you're using to read this blog with. Is it behind a firewall? Does it have perpetually open virtual ports which another user could theoretically simply 'step in' and make use of? Does it have anti-spyware and antivirus-ware installed?

These are basic questions. Answering yes or no to them may lead to vulnerabilities in your computer system. These vulnerabilities could be exploited at any time. And then there are code-based vulnerabilities: shittily written code for various programs that allows for even more ease of exploitation. It's a crazy world out there, on that new-fangled 'net-thing. Best be prepared, right?

Well, it isn't much different with the practice of magick. [Pointless derailment: There was previously a page-long story about how one time, I visited Valentine and got cursed. Not on purpose, and not by him. The trip home sucked. He owes me $5 for that shit. Why? Because clearly he was responsible! See. I'm busy blaming him for all my ills. Actually, I was just visiting him. That was his total involvement. The event sucked. It's way more fun for you to imagine. At one point I even shoved a thoughtform in a bus and made it start up. You know what would have been better? Not getting cursed. 'Nuff said.]

Again: Every system – from monetary to computerized to magical – has flaws. We need to recognize this as a constant feature in our estimation of things. You get right down to it: just about everything man-made can be hacked. We prefer not to because, well, actually – most of the time you don't even think about it. Why bother trying anything new if you're busy with the tried and true? Why even consider it? (“I have a Smart Phone. Clearly Capitalism must be working! Wait, they're going to charge me how much for what? FUCK THAT SHIT!”) And so we don't really consider what might be wrong unless it hits us in the face: like an angry-ass Goet unleashed at full batshit by a pissed off sorceress from about two hundred miles away from you. Fwack! And then we start asking questions about how to do things better: because they've suddenly become very, very relevant to us.

Keeping that in mind and sticking to the computer metaphor: let us imagine you're the computer. And, in the course of your studies, the magical system you're going to study is the operating system. In fact, we can keep to this metaphor quite easily without insulting too many people, and that's why I'm going to use it. And also because I like technology... If that wasn't readily apparent by now. Without chronology, let's compare some systems to operating systems in a very general way.

  • The Golden Dawn System is Windows 7.
Sure, it's Windows. But it could be much, much worse. The good news is that's it's everywhere (or will be, or could be) and made simpler to use all the time! Large chunks of people (ceremonial magicians, at least) make use of it and can readily discuss how to fix problematic areas. Of course the fact that it's also wide-spread means that plenty of folks loathe it. And they will spend vast amounts of time explaining to you every, single, painful and intricate way in which it has vulnerabilities until you're a bit afraid to look at the thing. Of course: ignoring those little painful factoids isn't exactly bliss, either, when Malware hijacks your box and you start spamming everyone you know and love with Viagra ads.

  • Variations on Traditional Wicca (and some eclectic styles/systems/what-have-you) are newer versions of MacOS.
Its also wide-spread. The good bits are that you can also make it so you can boot up newer Windows systems on it. There's an easily accessible base of people to chat up about it. Occult malware isn't really designed to interface with it. Of course: not all programs (read: rituals/operations) can be run on the box. And its fanbase can be rather obnoxious, too. And its getting more and more isolated – and yet not – all the time. Many hardcore geeks occult nerds will mock that shit unless you have a true Dream Box that even they must admit is somewhat cool.

Yes, you can run just about fucking anything on it. Yes, just about any hardware will work with it. It will power through errors that would Blue Screen other boxes like fucking nothing. (“What? Fuck you. That shit doesn't matter.”) But: the hardware may not have working drivers. You can look forward to learning to code that shit on your own, or hope that someone else has done it for you. You'll probably want a good group of fellow geeks to hang with, because otherwise you'll probably get lost trying to reinvent the bloody wheel. But, sometimes, when you plug other shit into it – things people didn't anticipate to be plugged into it – something goes pop and it works, even though it shouldn't. This perplexes people, who will tell you “that can't work!” Fuck those people. If they find out it works, they'll probably sue you for infringement of some sort or another. Actually, guys. Tell them nothing. Get a cabal, get you some skype, and tell all of occulture to fuck off and you'll be doing it right. Until you break your box. (And you probably will at some point.)

  • Agrippa and Grimoire-esque style approaches are Unix.
The godfather. Upon installing Agrippa, you will immediately be beset by Windows Users who will ask: “fuck, R.O., why are you installing that cranky-ass code on such a sweet machine?” And you will smile and then laugh at them. Hardcore fetish-y occult nerds will, however, marvel over the tidbits and most will be at least semi-familiar with the bare basics of such systems of thought. Those who view this path as the epitome of awesome can look forward to assloads of arcane thought, archaic English prose, and finding out what hash functions are. Or their broad equivalent.

  • Some Llewellyn authors are handing out Windows 3.X
Except that they charge for it. Fuck, even Microsoft doesn't do that. Almost 20 years out of date, and you don't have drivers to run SHIT. But you might be able to get access to old-school ICQ. Which was cool as fuck before AOL bought it... They'll be upgrading to Vista shortly.

Now, all of these vary in what they can do on your own. What's more important is that regardless of the operating system, they can all connect to something bigger. In the case of computers, it's the internet. With magick we get the astral. And just about every system (except for the last reference) will work with it. Again: once you get there, what you could do or what you've oriented yourself to do will differ. But that's a rather huge step all by itself.

And once we get to the 'net/astral, we're also talking a much bigger ballgame: along with PCs there's also homegrown servers (thoughtforms of various kinds), servers of varying degrees (elementals, angels, whatever), mainframes (egregores), and finally Supercomputers (Big Ideas, Archetypes, Gods, Planetary intelligences). Within these ranges there's also a range of capacity within the machines, as with their analogues. Some may argue that the super-super-supercomputers (All Powerful, All Knowing, All Benevolent Creator Gods of Awesome) don't exist, and that's a fair and fine point. But it doesn't really matter anyway unless for some reason you encounter it somehow. I find any discussion on the Absolute to by fucking pointless beyond the very basic ideas contained in it. These ideas are potentially useful, but don't overdo it.

Also, just because you primarily use one computer doesn't mean you can't use another with another operating system: you can learn more than one. You might want to get the basics on the first one you're using down before you step on to another, though.

Now: obviously these comparisons are only meant to serve as a way to glance at the subject. Historically things may have worked very, very differently than my examples. And we could argue which ones would work better for others if you really want to geek out, but that's not my point. My point is that they all plug into something ('net/astral), and that as long as that plugin capability works that is all that fucking matters. Likewise, when preparing to plugin to that bigger thing you may encounter technical difficulties of different kinds.

I could make these same comparisons about “models,” or “paradigms”... Please stop using that word. Actually, I'mma derail again for a moment. There's a difference between models and paradigms and concepts. A very big difference. Concepts are employed within a given framework. That does not make them a framework, in and of themselves. What you have is still a concept. Fuck, that article looks like it may be loaded with asinine bullshit. I haven't read it. Lemme know if it is, or you have a better overlook link. Anyway. Concept: big thing happens, and then everything changes. Concept. Not paradigm.

I'm using this as an example because I used to know Chaos Magicians that would try and invent “paradigms” out of nothing. It always looked, smelled, and felt like loads of ass. I hated every fucking moment of it. I wanted to find them, and take away every pomo book they owned and then follow it up with breaking their computer with a baseball bat.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

"The Winged Wizard."



O Great Book Of Spells,
Upon whose pages dwell
Secrets that no one tells...
Awake for Gargamel!

And because AIT was moping over the presentation of magicians:


Papa Smurf is also a magician, dude!

10 Things That Will Piss R.O. Off

1. Articles written like they might be seen in Cosmo. (What about sex magic tips? For men? 10 Ways to Make Your Lady-Friend - or Otherwise - Think You're a Grad A Stud. Or some shit.)
2. Batman. (?!?!?!?!?!?)
3. Why am I writing this?

Actually. This entry was never intended to be real. Just to annoy R.O.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

For Valentine, as Requested.

The Magic Island by Seabrook. E-text for free.
  Used copies on Amazon for $15-26.
Image from this page.

PS. Should anyone come across a copy of Seabrook's Witchcraft: Its Power In the World Today online or elsewhere: I want it.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Friday, March 18, 2011

Belief.

I believe in the power of belief.
Belief: it does not power magick, it provides limits.

This was one of those problems ye olde Chaotes ended up with after mis-reading Spare. A number of authors, seeing how he attacked small belief structures, thought that belief was the raw power behind magick. They were, in fact, wrong. What Spare asserts is that there is a triangle of necessities required for a wish to become successful: Belief, Desire, and Will. Only through the successive utilization of all three does the person generate a response.

Except in dreams or in the mind's eye/imagination. In that place, Belief changes. And if we can transcend our smaller, limited beliefs we can open ourselves up to the All and ride out on a tide of desire like sharks in an ocean...

But belief is not a tool for empowering spells. Shifting one's belief structure does not create more belief, out of no-where. It forces one to look at the way they treat alien beliefs, and how their presuppositions are forcing them into a line of thought that could be other-wised widened.

To nab a couple quotes:

To work with one’s ego is to begin an inner alchemy, the aim of which is not to ‘destroy’ or ‘transcend’ it, but to move from a state of fixation (ego-centric) to a condition of mutability (Exo-centric), which is capable of constant revision and change. This is what is meant by the phrase ‘letting go’, and of dissolving the idea of mind as separate to the world. The Ego remains as a point of ‘I-ness’ which gives meaning to experience, yet the contents of the psyche become much more fluid.”
- LOON, Apikorsus.
“…the clever man, so-called, the man of talent, shuts out his genius by setting up his conscious will as a positive entity. The true man of genius deliberately subordinates himself, reduces himself to a negative and allows his genius to play through him as it will…”
- Aleister Crowley, Moonchild.
“The Absolute is unbecoming and sterile if unbelieved. What is Truth? This question implies colour-blindness; it is asked rather as if Truth were an unrelated fact, thing, or abstract, the reason being that we do not conceive of it as multiple, varied, universal, or complex, but always as abstract. For there are many kinds of truth and all our truths are arrived at through negatives—what has no beginning has no becoming; what is without form has no meaning. Truth is of all things past, actual and potential in the conceptive—therefore Truth is relative. What is true for me may not be so for you, and what is true now may not be so later, or at other times and places, hence truth has a chronology in space and 'time-space truth'. There are the truths we create from our 'as if' realities—environment, character, temperament, learning, etc. Truth is also born of our known and latent beliefs so that to the insincere truth is baffling. Truth may be induced by the obsessive, by faith, or by something committed: these are the 'personal truths', the 'as if truths'. I assert that when accurately reorientated to time and place, and may be called 'sidereal truths'. 'Absolute truth', if any, is the immediate truth, the instant, already in yesterday, so never is. All reality, all life, all truths are of yesterday, and tomorrow is the beginning of another yesterday and gives 'commutative truth'… but I am sick of all categories, nominalism and all bloody science—so enough of Truth, and, like Pontius Pilate I wash my hands of it. Too much truth in me already…”
- Austin Spare, The Logomachy of Zos.
None of this, however, means that Neither-Neither can't be made use of to create free-belief. This, however, is somewhat different and would require another, much lengthier discussion. (What Spare calls 'free-belief' is created by destroying small, inhibiting or otherwise belief structures and using the emotional energy created by such destruction to instead create art, etc.)

EDIT: Check out Scribb's post.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Piracy: The Obama Tech Czar

The Obama Administration's Tech Czar, Victoria Espinel, reported two days ago that she wants to authorize wire-taps to stop internet piracy under “certain conditions.” (Notice how I'm not addressing making streaming a video a felony? That's because it's so absurd that I refuse to acknowledge it at this time.) Her wish-list is rather amusing, all things considered. But whatever.

Meanwhile, as Gordon brought it to my attention, a group of 35 researchers found that piracy problems, on the digital sea of silicon many of us ride daily, were not due to a lack of morality but due to global pricing problems.

The response to Espinel's comment from the tech industry has only begun, but the CCIA (Computer & Communications Industry Association) has already fired back, via Ed Black:
“Some in Congress and the White House have apparently decided that no price is too high to pay to kowtow to Big Content's every desire, including curtailing civil liberties by expanding wiretapping of electronic communications. Even the controversial USA PATRIOT Act exists because of extraordinary national security circumstances involving an attack on our country. Does Hollywood deserve its own PATRIOT Act?
This new punitive IP agenda follows just weeks after dictators spying on citizens online was the lead story in every major newspaper. Perhaps the obvious hypocrisy caused someone to decide to wait to announce the US goal of expanding our government’s powers to spy online. A screenwriter could almost market this plot as a comedy—if it weren’t so serious.
Maybe we should be grateful our government only wants to make streaming a song or movie a felony with potential prison time as punishment. What's next, corporal punishment?
This is the latest indication of the extent to which the content industry has infiltrated this administration and managed to turn the Administration's IP agenda into a policy which protects old business models at the expense of consumers, citizens' rights, and our most innovative job creating industries.”
To the Obama Administration: you cannot support network neutrality, but you can support wire-tapping to stop piracy? This is absurd. It's nice to know I was right that you're not out to help us on this subject. You want to make the situation better? Fire Victoria Espinel. She's obviously not the person you should have as your IP Czar.

To the MPAA and RIAA: You both swore to drop prices for your items beginning in the early 2000s. This did not occur; rather, you drove up prices while hoping (in the case of the MPAA) that the DVD code format would save you. When it turned out that all it took to hack that code was a box running Linux and a burner, you came after kids on the internet. You deserve to burn. Fact is, I think we'd be just fucking fine without either of you.

Monday, March 14, 2011

From: The Center of the Cyclone

“Yes, there are serious esoteric schools. Yes, there are effective gurus. My bet is that they are doing their work without all the fanfare and without taking on disciples who shout their names from the housetops. Obviously, these schools would not be available to just anyone, they would have 'cover stories' for their actual operations. Otherwise they could not operate. They would be over-whelmed by hyperenthusiastic potential disciples. They would have faced long ago the problem of selection of students – the careful selection without fanfare, without publicity.”
- John C. Lilly (1973)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

I. Nu-Flesh

I've already posted the entirety of the first part to EI.net, however Valentine asked me to throw the entry on here since he "get(s) more traffic from that blog than ... from the porn stars!"

I guess that makes this blog better than some porn. Or something. Anyhow, I'm gonna meet him in the middle and post some of the entry here. It'll read a bit choppy, as I'm cutting some bits out for the sake of space and the fact that it's a respost.

Long Live the New Flesh!
A few weeks ago, I asked some friends whether or not they had ever considered themselves Chaos Magicians, if they still did, and finally if “the unrelenting drive to be cool” was what killed the mainstream aspects of the Chaos Current. I received a number of responses, but Ryan Valentine’s response (Not Safe For Work) has been the longest and I promised him I'd return the written favor, as it were...

Valentine's first response was that Chaos Magick died because it got “cut off from its roots,” and so I asked him what he meant by that. The entry above explains what he meant, and his thoughts on the matter... Valentine makes another set of comments, however, that I do have a response to. One I’ve been thinking about for a while. I quote:
“Out of this year’s line-up of roughly 240 presentations… only two represent one of the actual pagan religions of the America’s. One devotional to Pomba Gira (which is where any self-respecting woman ‘trans’ or otherwise, foolish enough to attend this thing in the first place should go) and a Haitian ceremony for Damballah.
Two out of 240!
There are about a million neo-pagans and wiccans in America according to current standards. The number of South American, Mexican and Caribbean practitioners of dynamic alternative faiths far exceeds that of the white non-Christian minority faiths. Santeria, the most prevalent of the Creole faiths in America right now most likely outnumbers all of the neo-pagans and wiccans and new-agers put together and yet not one of these practitioners (most likely Mexican or Hispanic) numbered among Pantheacon presenters.”
Read my responses at EI.Net.
See Valentine's entry here, if you missed the link above.

You should read this:

Why magic is like learning to play guitar.

Scrib has successfully channeled Gordon. This means Gordon is now theoretically defunct. Gordon has become meta. All of the theurgists who don't love Jesus-God-(the)One and hate Black Swans are forever doomed!

Seriously, though. Damn good writing.

Friday, March 4, 2011

A moment of LOL-Tastic Focus

Ananael's Augoeides post from earlier today returned Christian Day and his all-powerful friends back to my attention. They seem to be making the media rounds these days.

You can laugh hysterically solemnly nod slowly at images of the fellow on almost all of the sites linked to the one above. He looks variously like a more gothic/doom laden Tuxedo Mask, or the more every-day fashion styling of a pirate.

I almost think some of these images and comments demand Demotivators for Witches. Indeed, I would like to sponsor a drive for Witch Demotivators. I feel it would help with newb-media matters.

Should you create a clever one, feel free to drop a link into the comment bar. It can be of Day, or really, anyone else (including myself) you feel like unleashing the raw power of satire upon.

Such as:
ALL POWERFUL

Or:
BEWARE, SHEEN!

Local Crackpots, & History

A recent article in Sacramento's local News and Review (an indy/leftist/radical rag which runs surprisingly accurate articles, albeit normally in a power-to-the-people vein) reads:
“The topic of the alleged FBI swindles never comes up again, but if it’s talk about government misdeeds this man’s looking for, then he’s in the right place: the monthly meeting for the Sacramento chapter of the Republic for the united States of America.
That lowercase “u” in “united” is intentional—and underscores the heart of the Republic’s mission to create a so-called shadow government that will restore the United States to its “lawful de jure” system by reviving the country’s “original” Constitution. The same Constitution which, according to members of the Republic, was abandoned in 1871 in favor of a new document that took away states’ rights and changed the United States into a business with just one goal: to turn every U.S. citizen into an individual corporation off of which it can profit.”
The group mentioned above is a bunch of local crackpots, from the sound of it. But I was a little weirded out when I started to think over their claims and try to match them with my understanding of history and legal history (the latter being not my strong suit in the least). But let me take a moment to grab a couple more of the claims and draws for people in to groups like this:

“In July, the Republic elected an interim president, Alabama’s Tim Turner, whom they consider not just the head of their organization—but the “lawful” president of the united States as well. The group is also currently selecting representatives—senators, governors and ambassadors—in cities across the nation. In January, more than 300 members of the Republic for the united States convened in Newport Beach for a weekend “jamboree” aimed at growing membership and discussing tactics.
You can also apply for membership via the Republic’s website and get an ID card (designed to replace your current, state-issued driver’s license); the site also offers an extensive history lesson on how the Republic believes the government has fooled its constituents into living a lie for the last 141 years...”
“Diane Thomas, a Sacramento Republic chapter co-founder and one of its “senators,” addresses the crowd from her seat at the back of the room.
The topic: how, when in 1933 the U.S. government abandoned the gold standard in favor of a paper currency, it also created a system in which it made each citizen a “straw man”—an artificial person created by law at birth. The practice replaced a person’s birthright name with a legal, corporate name indebted to the government simply by putting that name in all capital letters on your driver’s license, Social Security card and birth certificate.”
“The United States has created corporations out of each and every one of us,” explains Thomas, a short woman with a round face and reddish brown hair. “By putting our names in all caps—each and every one of us are worth $1.2 trillion to them.”
To prove her point, a copy of a birth certificate is passed around the table.
The certificate holder’s name is, indeed, in all caps and, someone points out, there’s the name bank in the certificate’s lower corner. Proof, Thomas says, that Washington, D.C., exerts a financial stranglehold on the rest of America.”

If you're starting to say to yourself, “well Jack, that's just crazy talk...” Just wait. There's more. It does get better.
“To fully understand the Republic’s claims, you must go back more than a century when, on February 21, 1871, the 41st Congress passed the District of Columbia Organic Act of 1871, which mandated the organization of a “municipal corporation” to run the day-to-day affairs of the District of Columbia. This act, according to members of the Republic, turned the United States into a corporate entity that, they say, has no jurisdiction beyond the District of Columbia’s 9-mile radius.
“Have you ever asked why D.C. is not considered a state—why it’s a sole, sovereign jurisdiction?” asks Kelby Thomas Smith, a Newport Beach-based ambassador for the Republic and the organization’s media spokesman. “It’s because Congress wanted to make sure that the people wouldn’t have rights over them in that [9] square-mile area.”...”
So. Brass tacks:
The District of Columbia had been a district, in the strictest sense, since at least 1801. In 1871 changes were made to the district because until then, those that lived in that area between Maryland and Virginia could not vote. (This was because they technically didn't belong to a state, and Districts didn't allow for Federal/Senate elections at the time. Or such is my understanding, anyway.)

Furthermore, there was another act in 1871 which was signed into Law that ruffled a lot of Southern Feathers. Well, to be more specific: it was the combination of the Klu Klux Klan Act and the Force Act of 1870 that ruffled feathers in 1871. As up until then, the Klan had run around trying to use force to intimidate African Americans into staying out of civil government, voting, and a number of other atrocities.

While the “Republic” denies that they are a racist group, I find it hard to believe that they'd warn to return to a pre-Civil War constitution, and claim 1871 was the year the U.S. “sold out” on the basis of the 1871 changes to the District of Columbia (changes which make perfect sense historically) if they didn't have a racial agenda of some sort. Maybe I'm just overly cynical these days.

Alerations to the status of corporations, which is to say the creation of the legal entity, occurred in 1886 when SCOTUS declared that: “The court does not wish to hear argument on the question whether the provision in the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which forbids a State to deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws, applies to these corporations. We are all of the opinion that it does.” It has nothing to do with individuals, however. And there is no precedent for their claims about using humans as corporate engines for the Gov't.
The 1933 decision to leave the Gold Standard and the reasons for doing so are covered by Prof. Christopher Hanes in this document entitled The Liquidity Trap and U.S. Interest Rates in the 1930s. A liquidity trap is a: “a situation in which conventional monetary policies have become impotent, because nominal interest rates are at or near zero: injecting monetary base into the economy has no effect.”

Hanes notes that throughout the 30s, the U.S. was facing a liquidity trap and as a counter-measure, we switched off the Gold Standard as it had become part of the problem. I'm not sure about just how this works, but I imagine similar confusion leads to the rather insane views occasionally expressed above.


Finally: creating a Shadow Government is technically treason. Just sayin'.

In other news: SCOTUS ruled that corporate entities aren't entitled to personal privacy. “We trust that AT&T will not take it personally ,” they concluded.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

“My System is Way Better Than Your System 'Cuz...”

Not long ago an occultist I know said something roughly along the lines of, “well boy, why aintcha an Adept yet?” (It wasn't really along those lines at all, actually. But pretend it was with me.)

I balked. I always balk at that question. I refuse to claim titles for myself unless they're bullshit titles (I'm a Saint, remember), I don't want power – over you, or anyone else, anyway. Power over myself or for use by myself is a bit different, and bothers me far less. I know what knowledge I can and can't be trusted with after years of dabbling in whatever I've felt like.

But, no. I'm not an Adept. Good god. That'd ruin all the fun, wouldn't it? By my token – and I'm speaking outside the context of Grades here because someone can hold a Grade that declares them an Adept and fall short of my expectations – an Adept is an individual who's synthesized a huge chunk of at least one system, elementally balanced themselves and prepared their consciousness for the raw matrix of the so-called “inner mysteries.” Those mysteries come in different flavors, and it wouldn't do to over generalize about them. You get the mysteries that the path you've moved along has prepared you for. Worrying about what they might or might not be beforehand is pointless and an excuse to ignore the Work.

So. I'm not elementally balanced. I may have some chunks of various systems in my head, but they are hardly complete and sometimes some of the discussion I try to follow cause my eyes to glaze over. Because the matter being discussed bores the Hell out of me. So I just tune all of that data out, and go do something else. I'm undisciplined. Lazy. I wield my pride like a weapon, and find the usual comments from certain types that I must purge myself of it to be... Well. I normally notice that they have it, too. They just hide it and deceive themselves. And I refuse to play that game. I am better than that. I have pride where I have pride, and I should also be aware of my weaknesses. And so I am.

I've just spent the above time trashing myself to make a point, though. Knowing my weaknesses leads me to wonder about when I should say someone is wrong – especially in spiritual contexts. How am I to know that? What if I'm wrong? What if blocks in my knowledge are leading me to erroneous conclusions?

So telling people that “energy” is bullshit, or that a given system is bullshit is hard for me. Because I rarely feel that way. What if it isn't? Reiki looks like crazy talk from loons to me, but what if I'm wrong? How the fuck do I know that you can't become an Reiki master in a weekend? Who knows. If you've got the talent for energy down already, why not? Maybe it's just proper instruction and streamlining the process that you need – and not years of training.

On the other hand: it takes 10,000 hours of work on a given subject to become an expert. Just take a moment to try and comprehend 10,000 hours of your life being dedicated to a single, given subject so you can know it back-to-forward. There are a lot of fake experts out there. And many of them deserve a good kicking.

And in that case, I say – kick 'em. Fuck 'em. Who cares, right? Let them reap their grand rewards as they come. Let them experience the rage of others who discover they've been misled. Let us make of a spectacle of it, even. Or not. It's still a subject, “who cares” general train of thought that I'm trying to hold here.

So with all of that said:
I like Heathens. I like GD folks. I am skeptical of many Reiki masters, but they're cool, too. I like the OTO. The IOT is laughable, but acceptably so. We ought to expect that of the IOT. The A/X will forever be the anarchy of awesome. Eclectic Wicca? Why not. Traditional Wicca? Assuredly. Traditional, non-Wicca, Witchcraft? Definitely.

I sort've feel that people should choose a path, work it, and just stop worrying about what others think. Unless their actions are so unspeakable that the law ought to be involved, why bother with it at all? Expect bad behavior everywhere. Expect some folks to hold grudges.

So from hence forth I'm going to work on a policy of, “not for me, but hey – do what thou will, right?”

I doubt I'll ever be less critical of specific thoughts, however. Or gross misbehavior from wankers. But wankers gonna wank, right?

So keep at it, friends. Enough wanking and surely you will save the world. It's what Chaos Magick taught me. Or so I'm always told by those that “know.” (I'm not smirking as I write those words. Really.)

This entry was pointless, meandering thought. If you've read this far, I apologize. I've undoubtedly wasted your time.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Trap + Links

One of the sources I plan to reference for an up-coming piece (presently entitled Liberty, Love and Law) isn't widely available on the U.S., but can be found in the bowels of Google's video category.

The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom? is a three-part documentary piece by the award-winning film-maker Adam Curtis. Like Curtis' other work (The Century of the Self, The Power of Nightmares – Google video searches also turn up those two) for the BBC, it examines multiple strands of ideas and individuals and how they interfaced over time, and how the impact of those ideas has effected us politically, socially, and otherwise.

Almost all of his work is enjoyable, and includes massive amounts of stock clips from the eras he discusses, along with clips of interviews with those he's discussing or interviews with the individuals if they're still living. The result is a set of spectacular pieces of documentary work, all of which are worth taking a look at. They are “leftist” documentaries, but not on the same level as the work of say... Michael Moore.

Anyhow, the three videos can be found by clicking these three respective links:


Enjoy,
Faust.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Techlovers: Tor/I2P

I have never tested out networks like Tor, or I2P... So I'm wondering how well they work, what the drawbacks are, etc.

Any commentators that wish to offer tips, advice, or thoughts are free to do so. Anon comments are enabled and will remain enabled (possibly permanently).