Thursday, February 28, 2013
Pythagoras' reduction was to the unit, he thought that the universe was made of units and was defeated by the diagonal of the one unit square (i.e. root 2, an irrational number that seems to express that we can't express the universe as 'unit' although we can express as 'number'). Parmenides exchanged that unit for unity and thence denied such phenomena as quality, quantity, movement, etc. Anaximander, to contrast, thought that all duality in nature stemmed from infinity.
The Atomists, Leucippus and Democritus seemed to collate a lot of these ideas in their atomic theories. They posited an infinite number of infinitessimal particles of various 'shapes' whirling in an infinite void and through their collation and dissociation, the manifestion of the physical universe.
When we talk about what we are made of though, it becomes a more complicated problem. First of all what are we talking about when we talk about us? Are we material constructs, Golems with life accidentally breathed into us by an essentially inanimate cosmos, or is this 'material' life an automatic development in the cosmos, easy to produce and fairly common? Does our consciousness, our sense of self, derive from the 'matter' which makes it up?
The notion that the universe is made of marbles is high-school. The modern notion of matter includes its complex relationship with energy and force so that we have 'one thing' which is essentially conserved. From QED, we have the vacuum spontaneously splitting and recombining into something and anti-something borrowing energy from the future and displacing it into the past in order to make this somehow not paradoxical. We have this problem with the observer collapsing the wave-function, that the scientist affects the experiment by 'looking' at it - we know that our consciousness is tied up with the matter and there is no such thing as a closed system - esse est percipi. We definitely have a Yetziratic 5-dimensional hypercontinuum of space, time and consciousness to play with and this does not feel to me like the 'material' that anti-materialists have the problem with. I am happy with being 'made' of this, but there are deeper understandings.
I am also happy with the notion that I am an information-wave pattern. The information in my body is constantly replicating itself and timetravelling, the actual material constituents for this are constantly cycled throughout my body and back out into the universe. That information is also changing as I get older following its own plan of operation but also open to change from external sources - at what point am I anything solid or fixed? - 'you cannot step into the same river twice, for it is not the same river and you are not the same man.' Information is a cold word as well, is knowledge too loaded? I am knowledge, I am 'the knowing'.
When I think about these ideas of matter, and how it relates to the nature of myself - I don't have such a problem with it. I do have a problem with high-school 'matter', I have a problem with the ball and stick approach to biology. I have a problem with the word - matter and materialist - as it seems to be used to essentially *deny* the magical nature of the universe by those who actually are still at a very limited understanding of what it ('matter') is. A philosophy of 'there is no magic this is 'just matter'' seems to be a result of indoctrination and fear and only seems to help the people who want you to see yourself as 'just matter' - it is disempowering on a massive scale.
'There is a decree of necessity, ratified long ago by gods, eternal and sealed by broad oaths, that whenever one in error, from fear, defiles his own limbs, having by his error made false the oath he swore – daimôns to whom life long-lasting is apportioned – he wanders from the blessed ones for three-times countless years, being born throughout the time as all kinds of mortal forms, exchanging one hard way of life for another. For the force of air pursues him into the sea, and sea spits him out onto earth’s surface, earth casts him in the rays of blazing sun, and sun into the eddies of air; one takes him from another, and all abhor him. I too am now one of these, an exile from the gods and a wanderer, having put my trust in raving Strife.' attributed to Empedocles
Thursday, February 21, 2013
We will now focus on the middle section of the Metabolism of Time, namely the Inner Mind (associated with the pancreas, enteric nervous system) and the Analysis and Reaction of/to the Moment (associated with the thymus gland and by extension to the immune system).
|THE CONFUSED VENUTIAN (THYMUS - RECOGNISING FORIEGN BODIES)|
|THE MASK OF THE DEMON|
NATURAL MASK OF
CONFUSED VENUTIAN (THYMUS)
|THE DREAMER - MASK OF |
|THE GAMBLER - MASK OF |
UNDER POSITIVE ATTENTION
The mask associated with the natural character of the Shellfish is the Magi - it is loud, highly social, entertaining and attention-seeking. It requires vast amounts of attention to maintain itself, and develops its varous 'party tricks' (story telling, juggling, pub games, jokes, sleight-of-hand, etc) in order to milk out more attention than is possible in normal transactions. Also the 'party trick' approach allows the Magi to tap the attention of many individuals at once. The Magi takes centre stage in social settings such as parties (which they normally create themselves being fantastic hosts and social butterflies) and increases the flow of attention diverting much of it to themselves. Sometimes if this is overzealously carried out they will causes Rifts (Rifts are obviously more likely to happen at parties).
|THE MASK OF THE MAGI - |
NATURAL MASK OF THE SHELLFISH
The above information relates to individuals whose 'root-soul' or 'natural-character' lies on or around Gevurah (Confused Venutian, Analysis of the Moment, Thymus, Demon) and Chesed (Shellfish, Response to the Moment, Thymus, Magi).
Monday, February 18, 2013
After watching a documentary about a tribe of remote Amazonian indians who believe the world is full of spirits I ask the class: Do you believe in ghosts? A few hands go up. Do you believe because you have experienced them? - nearly all the hands drop, perhaps one stays up - they have sensed a presence, or a decrease in temperature. The ones who believed but hadn't experienced I ask to justify their belief - they 'want to believe' because it seems the universe is a more interesting place with ghosts in it. Fair enough I say.
Another question follows: Do you believe in spirits? More hands but still very few. Why spirits and not ghosts? It seems the definition is looser, people can play more freely with the word - there is a spirit of 'happiness', and a spirit of 'misfortune' - whether its an intelligence or a pattern/current in space-time few seem to want to pry into, but more of them have experienced such spirits, be they personal or not.
One more: Do you believe in aliens? Not here necessarily but generally in their existence? Most hands go up. Why, I ask, if you've never seen them? Well the universe is so big they must exist somewhere, they say - then why so readily dismiss spirits and ghosts? - I retort.
I am not a materialist, but the lesson goes this way from here: In medieval times demonologists and sorcerers believed that you were under attack from legions of invisible demons that were attacking you and your soul at all times, constantly trying to crack open your body and mind - such possessions resulted in lesions, frothing at the mouth, deliriums, etc. There were even hierarchies of such demons, associated with an 'inverse' Tree of Life, logically then there were demons that attacked the head and demons that attacked the genitals or liver, etc. I ask them if they believe in such demonic assaults. No one puts their hand up, no one wants to live in that paranoid a world I guess. I tell them I *know* they are under assault from legions of invisible demons at all times and then show them images of microbes.
|EBOLA - A DEADLY DEMONIC SERPENT|
|YERSINIA PESTIS - DEMON LIKELY RESPONSIBLE FOR BLACK DEATH |
COUPLED PERHAPS WITH AN EBOLA LIKE HAEMORRHAGIC FEVER
|NECROTIZING FASCIITIS - FLESH-EATING DEMONS|
Why do highly intelligent students of the international World, ruthlessly mock their alchemical and shamanic forebears as superstitious or charlatans when there is no justification? Much of the advice given by such alchemists or shamans such as burning dead bodies, or advising ritual baths for cleansing, or praying in order to help 'fight off the disease' is sensible. The idea that there is a demonic hierarchy that attacks different parts of the 'human soul' makes perfect sense - herpes simplex type 1 attacks the lips, and herpes simplex type 2 attacks the 'other lips'.
We then focus on three powers traditionally linked to battling the undead: garlic, silver and sunlight. Garlic ( in the form of allicin its active principle) is antibacterial against a wide-range of bacteria, anti-fungal, anti-parasitic and anti-viral - it gains this power from the chemical reaction between allicin and important enzymes the microbes use for their own metabolism. Silver ions, literally burst the membranes of microbes - causing them to leak out their life fluids - and silver is used in plasters, hospital washing machines, socks (I have silver technology socks!!!) and it can also be taken orally, as I do myself, in the form of colloidal silver. Vitamin D ('sunlight') activates the immune system, making it alert rather than sleepy - so there is evidence that the increase of illness (demonic attack) in the Winter is as much to do with lack of light as it is with temperature change. These three, sunlight, silver and garlic form a holy trinity in the battle with undead and demonic forces. The alternative is to use medicine largely made from petrochemicals, petrochemicals that have been essentially drawn from ancient necropolises of concentrated death - if you'll excuse my figurative language. Or vaccines. I had to make vaccines as part of my Biochemistry course. *Nasty nasty process*. As anitbiotics begin to lose their effect due to the evolution of superbugs, these traditional weapons of garlic, silver and sunlight will come back to the fore - perhaps souped up by technology.
I want to state again that I am not a materialist - my actual philosophy is currently something between Neopythagorean and Panpsychism. I do believe these diseases are 'manifestations' and that everything is interconnected. To what extent these demons are somehow conscious or the manifestation of a consciousness that is attacking you, I do not know - but a troubled psyche (mind-soul) will have a weaker immune system for sure. And burning death for power, or using medicine derived from death seems more than a little bit necromantic to me. I'd rather go with herbs and minerals, if I can.
Which brings us neatly to iron. The Apotropaic Use of Iron was an article I read many years ago from a then colleague of mine Bryan Gendler. I don't know whether the article here has been copied from him or its his new pseudonym - http://www.apotropaicarts.com/articles/iron/ - but Jason Miller quotes the article in Protection and Reversal Magick when he discusses the use of iron in warding off demonic influence. One thing that leapt out at me was the information I had learned about 'iron-stealing' bacteria during my course on the pathogenesis of infectious disease. If you look at the questions at the end of the article and my own thoughts above, perhaps the use of iron in protecting against demons especially during childbirth (infant mortality due to unhygienic surroundings) and marriage (perhaps risk of STDs) is because they were aware somehow that the 'demons' wanted their iron (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080731140223.htm)
Why iron? Why is iron just so important from a more esoteric perspective? Iron has an atomic number of 26 - qabalistically this has a lot of significance. 26 for instance is Alef, by the well known Qabalistic idea that Alef consists of two Yods (2 x 10) and a Vav (6). ADM - could be considered to be oxygenated blood - in the sense that Alef or Air is married to DM which in hebrew means red earth - the soil that 'God' blew life into. What is the important molecule in this oxygenation of the blood? Haemoglobin.
*Another funny double use of the word plasma in cells and the Sun is strangely justified qabalistically by investigation into the links between iron and the Sun. Go google them and have fun.
Saturday, February 9, 2013
The astute reader will notice that the character of the Many Mannered Mind Man lies at the bottom of the result of negative attention on the Metabolism of Time. What happens then when negative attention is applied to a Many Mannered Mind Man? - in short virtually nothing. The Many Mannered Mind Man is nearly immune to negative attention. The only time it will really have an effect is after the result of extensive positive attention which will have changed their mask from Vampyr to Immortal/Lover* and then negative attention will rapidly restore the natural mask.
The Many Mannered Mind Man is almost entirely negative - one of the reasons is their association with the genitals. Their primary concern, mostly unconcious, is with the survival of the species not the survival of the individual self - they don't think with their dicks, they think with their sperm and eggs! Any positive attention moves them away from their formless ego to a more concrete form of ego (identified with Tifereth and the Inner Mind) and they will fairly immediatly take steps to do something which will cause them to recieve negative attention. Think back to the section on Physiognomy - Genitals where we were talking about the propensity for characters high in testosterone to break boundaries. In this instant then the negative attention seeking behaviour will almost certainly take the form of saying something inappropriate or breaking some kind of taboo - maybe even physical violence as a punch in the face is generally concieved as fairly negative. Bear in mind also that since their natural character is at the bottom of this 'attention' Tree this kind of behaviour is perfectly natural and actually I would argue 'healthy' for them.
The mask of the Vampyr and the previous description of it seems rather nasty - well there are a lot of nasty images in this work and that's because I have tried to face humanity full on when I have been making my observations - I am not looking through rose-coloured spectacles. The behaviour of high testosterone individuals in their relationship with other people is typically of the mask of the Vampyr. In relationships, they can obsess, stalk, mesmerise and be very sexually aggressive (male and female) and lets not forget that some people *like* this behaviour for whatever reason. Success in individual relationships can lead to an attempt to form a herd of thralls that are in awe of the central Vampyr - typically massive success in this area is prevented by other characters. The Vampyr is a symbol which is frankly not human - and not limited by the mores of human civilization - this ties in nicely with their love of breaking boundaries and going against the 'herd of humanity.' Do not forget your own knowledge of the array of different kinds of vampyrs when it comes to spotting and managing this kind of behaviour in your own Conflux or others. They can be urbane and sophisticated (remember shape-shifting/adaptability is a key ability of theirs) as much as they can be wild creatures of the night.
A distorted Many Mannered Mind Man in the form of an Immortal (the natural mask of the Jay and adrenaline) - a 'positively charged' Mind Man if you will can a be a *more* dangerous force, or seem so to the rest of humanity. This distortion is typical of soldiers that go 'wrong'. The Immortal is associated with the identity of the group and protecting that identity, and forming this kind of mask is the result of induction of patriotism and loyalty to fellow soldiers typical of the military - combine this with the high testosterone and violent instinct of a Many Mannered Mind Man and you have the various massacres and atrocities that come with war on an individual level. If a Many Mannered Mind Man is seeking negative attention because their mask has been posiitvely distorted giving them that negative attention stops them from becoming this - which is worse.
*It is far more likely that positive attention on the Many Mannered Mind Man will change the mask from Vampyr to Immortal than Vampyr to Lover although it does happen if conditions are favourable - normally it requires lots of strong drugs - not alcohol.
The above information pertains to Yesod.
Thursday, February 7, 2013
'The many books written on the subject in the 19th and 20th centuries by various theosophists and mystics lacked any basic knowledge of the sources and very rarely contributed to the field, while at times they even hindered the development of a historical approach. Similarly, the activities of French and English occultists contributed nothing and only served to create considerable confusion between the teachings of the Kabbalah and their own totally unrelated inventions, such as the alleged kabbalistic origin of the Tarot. To this category of supreme charlatanism belong the many and widely read books of Eliphas Levi, Papus and Aleister Crowley, all of whom had an infinitessimal knowledge of Kabbalah that did not prevent them from drawing freely on their own imaginations instead. The comprehensive works of A.E. Waite, S. Karppe and P. Vuillaud, on the other hand, were essentially rather confused compilations made from second hand sources.'
Wider Influences, Kabbalah, Gershom Scholem - p 203
An example which can provide more insight into how this works is the Jay and his natural masks as compared and contrasted with the Mime.
The Mime is at the 'Forgetting' stage of the Metabolism of Time and the Jay is at the 'Remembering' stage. As I mentioned in the previous post on Masks, positive attention (praise, compliments) drives the mask up the diagram and negative attention (criticism, slander) drive the mask down the diagram. The mask changes to be the one associated with the new position and as such is not the natural mask of the character in question; this can cause problems if an unnatural mask is maintained for a long period of time. Normally however, the underlying character takes action to restore the mask to its natural state - by seeking either negative or positive attention to address the inbalance.
|THE JAY - ADRENALS (ADRENALINE)|
|THE IMMORTAL -|
OF THE JAY
The astute reader will then note it is easier to transform an Immortal into a Dreamer (the natural mask of the Prisoner/inner mind) and to transform a Lover into a Vampyr (the natural mask of the Many Mannered Mind Man/Altered Past) than vice versa, through the application of attention.
These are fairly extreme descriptions (forgive the hyperbole) and the reality is that most individuals do not encounter such excess on a day to day basis and the behaviours and the swing between states as attention fluctuates is much more mild in its manifestation but it is of this nature.
Information relating to the Jay is associated with Hod.
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Monday, February 4, 2013
In order to sustain its existence Feelix and the Conflux are involved in a number of processes.
FLUX - For a conflux to remain in existence there must be a continuous flow through it. Time must flow, as must energy in the form of nutrition, but more importantly in the case of our existence as social animals information or 'attention' must flow. Attention, positive and negative, is a form of nutrition which is necessary for the maintainence of character and personality. Throughout the day the actions we take meet with the approval or criticism of those around us - whether it be in the completing of physical tasks or the making of jokes. Different types of physiognomical characters require different types or amounts of attention and typically when someone recieves too much positive attention they will personally seek out negative attention to counterbalance it. There are some situations where the character cannnot restore the balance and in these cases the overload of positive or negative attention can lead to a warping or fragmenting effect (rifts) on the healthy individual - these are cases of abuse, and abuse can come in both positive and negative forms.
SHARDS- Shards are moments of concentrated meaning - intense memories that can be fed upon when the flow of attention through the cell is running low. If Feelix is not recieving attention, it can free up some stored attention from the memories they have in the same way you can survive by burning fat deposits. Some people can make the stored attention in memories last longer than others, some actively engage in intense experiences to create them for the purposes of storage and later use - this relates to the Metabolism of Time diagram, the physiognomical characters and their accompanying natural behaviours. Creating too many shards can lead to inflexibility in the 'cell membrane' - the third sphere of consciousness, the sphere of thought.
RIFTS - Recieving too much attention, or food, can cause rifts - dangerous breaches in the integrity of the cell and which allow potentially harmful entities to enter. In real terms over exposure to positive or negative attention causes the Conflux and Feelix with it to break apart. Attention that causes rifts is abuse - be it positive or negative. Some Rifts result in the warping of the expressed personality (the mask), some can actually fragment the mind altogether but most are typically repaired by the Conflux and whatever 'entities' have entered are disposed of.
VEIL - The process of recycling 'flux' causes damage to the structure of the Conflux, regardless of whether it is excessive or not (e.g. simply breathing causes oxidative damage). This attrition ultimately results in the extinction of the individual conflux* - the brain and body will eventully die and the Conflux will be popped and returned to the Flux itself. Increasing the rate of flow of attention will increase the attritive damage caused by it.
COLOUR - Colour is a term applied to the 'background radiation' of existence. In order for colour to be there, there must be Flux, Shards, Rifts and Veil. Colour (or story) is what is sustained by the processes of the Conflux. It is a state that can be experienced by meditating on the self as Feelix (infinite)** as opposed to character (near-infinite) or individual conflux (finite).
*Time itself does not have a beginning and an end (nor does the Metabolism of Time). Time did not 'start'. Start is a reference to time, you can't have 'before' time, you can't have 'after' it - Objects *within* time must have a beginning and an end in order that they may be percieved as objects, the same way they must have 'edges'. Therefore objects are finite, their finity is a necessary quality in their manifestation. See the post on 'Metabolism - Physiognomy (Pituitary) in the Qabalah section on the meaning of 'B' in Berashith.
**Zurvanism is an extinct branch of Zoroastrianism that has Zurvan, an immortal principle of Time, as the 'one God' and Ahura Mazda and Ahriman as his twin sons. In many ways the Metabolism of Time outlaid in the book is Zurvanistic. It postulates The Metabolism of Time itself as immortal in that 'Feelix' is Zurvan, whereas individual confluxes derived from Feelix are mortal in that they are dual, experience good and evil (positive and negative attention), beginning and end - in order that they may be experienced. To what extent then that you are 'an immortal' is a matter of perspective. That Time is experienced by Identity is an immortal process - by stripping oneself back to pure identity one can experience colour but one must sacrifice their individual ego in order to do that I am Roger, or I am Peter must be reduced to 'I', Roger or Peter being the ego that is 'ammed' by the I. That Time is experienced in the ways outlaid in the Metabolism of Time through a series of ten stages is also immortal but those interpretations are influenced by cultural interpretation - 'Character' or 'amming' then is immortal, but the various styles of different characters are not. Individual human egos such as Peter or Roger are not immortal.
Friday, February 1, 2013
|THE CONFLUX - FEELIX|
Feelix then, composed of the physical body* and the three spheres of his consciousness ('reach', perception, and thought) is a Conflux, a place where the rivers of time flow together and into each other. The Metabolism of Time diagram can be overlaid directly on the figure of Feelix himself - so that 'the Altered Future' overlays the head, the Experience of the Moment, the throat, the Inner Mind, the Solar plexus and the Altered Past, the genitals. Feelix then is this great Conflux of thoughts, emotions, feelings and experience.
We have detailed characteristics, physiognomical and psychological, for the various 'characters' that arise when an individual is more concentrated on or genetically determined towards, for example, the experience of the moment or the altered future - just like in the body there are cells which contain all DNA but express only the portion needed to be a liver cell or a skin cell so there are in society people who contain the whole Metabolism of Time but only express a portion of it.
An important aspect of the Great Work is to unlock the other characters within yourself systematically. Perhaps you are a 'Treefrog' in that you have prominent eyes, an obsession with the aesthetic experience, an urge to travel and explore and are potentially clairvoyant. But you are also, or at least contain within you the potential to be, all the other characters, in the same way you not only have a thyroid gland, but you have pineal, pituitary, pancreas, etc as well. Once these characters have been explored completely you will be able to do the work of the Treefrog, or whatever character you are, more effectively, as your actions will be in tune with the whole. You will find that the other characters in the world will be supportive of your 'story'**.
How does one explore these characters then?
- One can meditate upon them as archetypes (and the various other forms of them that have come to us over the centuries in the forms of Gods, heroes, patriarchs, saints, etc) and journey into oneself to encounter them, communicate with them and 'unlock' (or rectify) them.
- One can see their reflections in the people of the 'outside' world (which actually for all intents and purposes occurs within consciousness); using the physiognomical system one can navigate social space and resolve 'internal' disputes 'externally' using psychodrama. For instance, if one wants to 'unlock' the Treefrog and one is not a Treefrog, one needs to find a Treefrog and explore its being through conversation and dialogue and shared adventure or projects. By actively listening to another being as a part of yourself as opposed to a different creature altogether one can learn about oneself through dialogue.
The advantage of pursuing these paths systematically cannot be overstated. The universe, qabalistically, is built on a strong foundation and in rectifying your own being it is wise to approach it like an architect looking primarily for support and balance and then make decisions based on this as opposed to entirely randomly.
Physically, genetically moreover, I am on the paths between the Mime (adrenal cortex), the Many Mannered Mind Man (genitals), and the Prisoner (pancreas). This combination of imagination, mimesis, stress control and adaptability makes me suited to the environment of entertainment, theatre and film but it could apply to other areas equally usefully. Perhaps the memory of the Jay would be more useful when it comes to learning lines, but actually 'forgetting' the lines so scripts are played more naturally as opposed to hearing the lines being 'remembered' is an important part of suspending audience's belief. Here then a potential disadvantage of the Mime, her forgetfulness, can be turned into a strength (as looking at the Metabolism of Time one sees that we 'forget' into memory. The problems I have are typical of those characters and include some propensity to weight gain, urticaria (my skin condition) which flares up in response to way too much work (which I bring upon myself by being able to handle a lot), and a hazily configured ego***.
Through my work I am endeavouring to seek out the characters/archetypes within and outside of myself through meditation and 'pathwalking'****. As they are 'rectified' I note that I acquire their skills and talents to some extent alongside my own natural talents but actually what is happening is I am unlocking their potential within me.*****
*A concept which includes the DNA that makes you up as much as the blood, bones and sinew derived from it.
**If your story happens to be Dionysian self-destruction they will be more supportive of that too. Bear that in mind.
***Lower triad characters typically have a less concrete idea of themselves than middle triad, and upper triad 'objectify' themselves more easily. Certainty in these areas increases 'up' the tree.
****More on this special form of theurgy later.
*****'Every person, whatever his grade in the Order, has also a "natural" grade appropriate to his intrinsic virtue. He may expect to be "cast out" into that grade when he becomes 8'=3'. Thus one man, throughout his career, may be essentially of the type of Netzach; another, of Hod. In the same way Rembrandt and Raphael retained their respective points of view in all stages of their art. The practical consideration is that some aspirants may find it unusually difficult to attain certain grades; or, worse, allow their inherent predispositions to influence them to neglect antipathetic, and indulge sympathetic, types of work. They may thus become more unbalanced than ever, with disastrous results. Success in one's favourite pursuit is a temptress; whose yields to her wiles limits his own growth. True, every Will is partial; but, even so, it can only fulfill itself by symmetrical expansion. It must be adjusted to the Universe, or fail of perfection.' Book 4, Chapter 7