Sunday, July 29, 2012

Parachuting into the Abyss

Dust Devils 

 In the wind of the mind arises the turbulence called I.
 It breaks; down shower the barren thoughts. 
 All life is choked. 

This desert is the Abyss wherein is the Universe. 
The Stars are but thistles in that waste. 
Yet this desert is but one spot accursed in a world of bliss. 

Now and again Travellers cross the desert; they come from the Great sea, and to the Great sea they go. And as they go they spill water; one day they will irrigate the Desert, til it flower. 
See! Five footprints of a Camel! V.V.V.V.V. 

~ Aliester Crowley, Book of Lies

The experience of the abyss can be quite frightening and uncomfortable.  Like being extremely excited one day just before opening the front door to go to work.  Clearly visualizing each step in the process: open the door, walk outside, lock door, walk to car, unlock car, start car, drive to work.  Clearly seeing the outside before you open the door: the sky is blue, the grass green, the wind gentle, the sun shining. 

When you open the door and step through everything goes wrong.  The sky is black and bleeding, the grass looks like grasping fingers sprouting out of the ground and the sun plummets toward the earth like an old God dying.  Your simple mechanical actions are exceedingly difficult to accomplish, there are noises all around that some part of your brain informs you indicate your crossing into an overlap between what you know and some horrible hell that is unimaginably terrifying.

What some part of you understands as peals of laughter and joy sound like screams of agony as they reverberate into your ears.

Congratulations!  You made it to the abyss!  Everything you thought you knew disappeared and was replaced by something seemingly very sinister, isn’t that wonderful? Your brain struggles to reassess reality, all of the signals it ignored because your perception was gradually simplified and symbolized are now vivid and at the forefront.  See for the first time!  Experience your very own disintegration! 

Can you put yourself back together?  Here in this war room, cold, wet and naked on the metal floor, a galaxy of  red flashing buttons and loud sirens being emitted from the console which covers all four walls and the ceiling, no manual for how to operate the damned thing. 

All the old scripts have been torn apart, and next to you the great heap of dust opens its toothsome maw.  Choronzon feeds well.  In this game he plays the role of torturer/devourer.

The abyssal experience, critical to any type of  magickal development, represents the opportunity to completely rebuild from scratch.  Carry your wherewithal with you into the abyss and you can feed Choronzon any habit, circuitry or program that limits you.  Emerge victorious or descend into permanent madness, the choice rests with you and your preparation.  The ego removed, what rebuilds?

At the threshold you can cling to the self, but through the door, it goes.  The less you cling, the less painful the transition will be.  No self anywhere, no self anyway.

Currently I approach chapel perilous.  The liminal space where it becomes harder and harder to tell if life receives influence from some supernatural entity, whether what I perceive happens anywhere outside of my own twisted imagination.  The door at the other end of the chapel leads to the abyss.  I’m on my way. 

Often our limits lie somewhere in the periphery, imperceptibly.  We like to believe we have no limits, but it takes some thought to understand what that means.  I was born into a certain social habitus, this habitus limits me by making it exceedingly difficult to truly understand people of different circumstances, by practicing dissolution of these, most obvious limits, the territory opens up, an influx of new meta-awareness occurs.  Other limits involve beliefs I have built, structures surrounding my ego, what I’m proud of, what I consider myself.  

The Mayan gods blinded the first men because they could see in all directions from their lookouts, this made man conspicuously powerful, like gods.  I can’t help but see a relationship between this broadening and widening of the personality into an almost impersonality on the one hand and this classical Mayan definition of power through perception on the other.

The experiment for widening the mesh I take directly from Crowley.  Quite simply: for 7 days do not refer to your ‘self’ with the pronoun I or me.  Remove your own ego from regular conversation.  Crowley would cut his arm with a razor everytime he caught himself using these damnable pronouns, I’ll settle for Wilson’s method of biting my thumb.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

More focus

I become more focused every day.  Fewer disparate things attract my attention as significant.  Concentrating very hard these days, still failing miserably.


  Bread and Puppets Museum: Glover, VT

This place lies in the northeast kingdom, almost 3 hours away. The man who started the phenomenon, Peter Schumann, came from France to New York in the early 60s, started building puppets and making bread. His shamanic vision: "Art should be as basic to life as bread". He would serve the bread to friends and they would eat while he put on puppet shows for them. He continued to build puppets which became more infamous, taking part in anti-war protests and putting on large street performances. By 1974 he moved himself and his puppets to Vermont.

The tone of the farm changed to commune, the performers lived and worked in a closed community, and performed to any who would watch. A yearly, weeklong pageant became the habit of the puppets drawing more and more people every year. By the 1990s, these pageants drew tens of thousands of people to camp near the museum. Increasingly dissipated in focus, the event drew more people until it reached a critical mass in 1998, becoming unmanageable. A fight which resulted in the death of one participant signaled the end of these pageants. Now they put on a weekly sunday show in their "Papier Mache Cathedral" for onlookers, but no one camps there anymore. People attracted by the power of the thing. 

 How could something like that remain pure?


Declaration of Intent

The first page, glaring mistakes and all. The thing forms and manifests itself. Ideas continue to seep into my mind from some other place faster than I can pen them down and keep track of them. Whatever is going on is both wonderful and terrifying. Fruits of just a few months hard practice. 

Page 2 sits on my drawing table, almost complete. Page 3 has a refined sketch, waiting for page 2 to be finished. Page 4-10 are rough sketches and outlines of words. 

 How can I just do this? I need more time.

The knight of swords.  I experience great difficulty and discomfort currently, an uncomfortable alchemical experience.  Sir sword wants me to persist, and he will cut through opposition while I plug away and suffer some transformation or the other.