The Tao of Eschatology

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Remember that time that fungus head philosopher received revelation from the plant kingdom and used state of the art technology, the i-ching,  and the Mayan calendar to predict the eschaton? It was a simpler time when the BerenstEin bears were proudly displayed in bookstores, We Are The Champions ended with “of the world”,  and Han Solo shot first…  Oh. And the Revelation of the Great Day of God the Almighty hadn’t really kicked off yet. Those were the days.

“The Eschaton has a date: December 21, 2012.”

I’m pretty comfortable believing that that happened and the world actually did end. For a few reasons.

I’m pretty sure we’re in a different timeline now. One where the singularity has already happened, and the internet is the Messiah in its infancy.

But that’s just me. Other people have different ideas.

For people who subscribe to a more Abrahamic worldview, the One True God will come back to earth in a great revelation, followed by a messianic age of brotherhood, peace, and prosperity for all of the survivors.

This idea seems to have led some people to the conclusion that it’s a good idea to “immanentize the eschaton“, an idea co-opted and promoted by some Discordians in the 1970’s. Sometimes satire can be a dangerous thing. Like when you tell someone “Don’t get angry but…” Of course they’re going to get angry. Of course. You’ve totally primed them to do exactly what you don’t want. Similarly, if you tell them “Here’s a dystopian future we don’t want. We absolutely do not want this horrible world. Compelling, isn’t it?” We can’t help but drive towards whatever we are most focus on. And generations of cultural catastrophizing have brought us to this point in history, where a lot of folks seem to think the end of the world is upon us.

Now some of those people seem to be sewing the seeds of chaos while they prepare for the fallout.

I don’t know about you, but I can catastrophize pretty good. When things start looking bleak, it’s very easy for me to generate all the scenarios about how much worse it’s going to get. And then I can start telling myself stories about how horrible it all is, how inadequate to the situation I am, how nothing can be done and how much it was all shit anyway. And then I can just give up and shut down. Not because of what is happening, but because of the phantom mindstuff that I’m making up and then empowering.

So what’s to be done?

According to research, being mindful of what is really happening in and around you throughout the course of your day can have many benefits on your health and mental well-being, including better clarity, decision making and reaction time.

I studied a martial art under a Buddhist monk briefly. During that time, one of the many things he demonstrated that made a lot of sense to me was that there are two kinds of things, things that you can affect and things that you can’t. When you can, it is beneficial to be fully present and engaged, and when you can’t do anything, it is better to do nothing.

If there is, in fact,  a war on consciousness happening, the way to win is to not be moved.

So here’s what I’d rather see myself doing: breathe, ground yourself, be gently aware, let go of what you can’t affect and do what you can.

We’re curious to learn if you have any strategies you find particulary useful for keeping yourself focused and responsive when things look bleak. Please feel free to share! We’re always happy to develop better resources.

 

Are Corporations Demonic Egregores?

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Like other living organisms, corporations strive to survive. They require energy in the form of money, labor, and other resources in order to sustain themselves. Unless they receive a fresh and constant flow of energy they tend to stagnate, diminish and die off. Of course, they have no material bodies of their own and must still rely on humans to maintain them, to feed them, to be their physical circulatory system and to host them within their minds.

So how does a disincarnate entity like a corporation get humans to feed it with their energy?

Similar to the way an angler fish has evolved a dangling light to attract prey, the corporation has evolved branding to capture the attention and activate the imagination of you, the consumer.

Corporations hack into the human psyche via the basic human operating system: symbols, in the form of brand names, logos, image, and story.

It runs deeper than simple hunting and consuming. A successful corporation is one that can maintain and milk its target. They have evolved a variety of strategies for doing this. By being the only provider filling a “need” (real or manufactured)  when they can, providing the illusion of choice when they can’t, becoming associated with the premium version of a thing, or the affordable alternative to the premium version, and so on.

Modern humans have evolved an unconscious symbiotic relationship with the brands that populate our mental lives, in which they provide for our needs, and we use our life energy to gather and provide them with the resources they need to survive in our meme pool.

So are corporations demonic egregores? They certainly have a unique place in modern human culture.

We’re curious to learn your thoughts.

Stay tuned for the 33rd Parallel podcast All About the Demons, where we figure out once and for all what exactly demons are.

Chaos Magick

Here’s what I’m starting to think some of it might be…” -Jose.

Chaos Magick is a catch-all phrase for modern eclectic occult practice. It is like the punk rock of the occult, in that it is a reaction to the calcified, rigid, rule-based occult systems of the past.

Building on the work of Aleister “The Beast” Crowley, who published previously secret occult teachings, Austin Osman Spare and early NLP , among other influences, it came into prominence in the 1980’s with the work of Philip Hine and Peter Carroll.

The basic tenets of Chaos Magick are:

  1. “Magick is the art and science of creating change in conformity with will.” -Crowley
  2. What you believe is real, is real.
  3. By altering your beliefs, you also alter (your?) reality.

Chaos magickal practice has evolved to center around a few core magickal concepts and practices. These include:

  1. Sigil Craft: Creating and charging a symbol of intent.
  2. Gnosis: An intense altered state of consciousness.
  3. Servitors: An independent entity which is designed by the magician to do their will.
  4. Egregores: An entity existing in the collective mind of a group of people.

Theoretically, Chaos Magick offers a few models of how magick might work.

They include (as of this writing):

  1. The Spirit Model: Magick works because spirits.
  2. The Psychological Model: It’s all in your head.
  3.  The Information Model: The universe is made of information. Magickal practices can alter the structure and flow of the information.
  4.  The Energy Model: Magick moves some kind of energy around, and that makes stuff happen.
  5. The Simulation Model: Similar to the Information Model, it claims that this is a simulation and the magician can tweak the matrix.
  6. The Meta Model: Straight NLP. Whatever works, man.

We make no claims as to the truth of any of this, but offer it as a starting point. We welcome any kind of feedback and are happy to answer whatever questions come up to the best of our ability.

You can hear an audio sigil on our podcast here: