Monday, December 31, 2007

2007- The Year In Review- Dragon*Con

The missus and I made the pilgrimage to Dragon*Con for our 20th anniversary and had the frickin' time of our lives. I've been sifting through YouTube vids, but can't seem to be anything that conveys the madness and the scale of the thing. You need an IMAX camera to capture it. As always, Joe was one of the belles of the ball, and the Dawn Look-a-Like Contest was packed to the rafters. Personally, I thought it should have been a cakewalk for the twins, but hey, no one asked me.

The highlight of the show for me? The first night in the Hyatt lobby. It was like a scene from a Star Wars movie come to life. The amazing architecture of that building just added to the otherworldliness of the evening.

The lowlight? The Cruxshadows concert. I kept waiting for Jaz Coleman to leap from the wings with a chainsaw and wreak revenge for his musical concepts being so debased. But this was Dragon*Con, so a lowlight there would be a highlight in day-to-day life. And there are a lot worse things to look at in this world than the Cruxshadows' dancers...

2007- The Year In Review- XF2

2002 was a particularly horrible year for me. It started with my best friend dying, ended with with Joe Strummer dying and in between, The X-Files went off the air.

I'll be thinking of the faithful departed when the house lights go down in July.

2007- The Year In Review- Saving the Sun

When did they start making Astrophysicists so damn pretty?

2007 In Review- "Saved by the Sun"

Sometimes one is left speechless...

2007- The Year In Review- Know Your Rites

In a provocation seemingly designed to drive symbology buffs and conspiracy theorists to distraction, a giant statue of the death god Anubis sauntered down the Thames on a barge to promote the King Tut exhibit. Note the twin towers in the background that the photos of the stunt seem to showcase.

All the more reason to go to the exhibit...

2007- The Year In Review- Funky Tut

On my birthday the missus and I saw the King Tut exhibit in Philadelphia. It was astonishing. I had actually seen it before at the Museum of Fine Arts back in the 70's, but was too young and stupid to appreciate it.

The exhibit is now on display in London. Go see it.


2007- The Year In Review- The Departed

Scorcese wins a long-overdue Best Director Oscar for The Departed, parts of which were filmed on my old stomping grounds. I can think of any number of other pictures that should have earned Marty the nod, but The Departed is certainly worthy. Wahlberg should have gotten Best Supporting though...

2007- The Year In Review- Inland Empire

David Lynch struck blows for creative freedom, cinematic quality and the eternal power of the dreaming mind with his latest masterpiece, Inland Empire. Like most other movies these days, I watched it on DVD so I wasn't bothered by the digital video at all. In fact, I felt it gave the film an extremely unsettling feeling of intimacy. I'm sure DV will unleash a torrent of awful films, but it will also give the next David Lynch an opportunity he or she wouldn't have with film. There's no reason someone couldn't do a film like Clerks with a camcorder these days. Hell, you could do a film that looks as good as that on your phone these days. The question is can anyone write anymore?

2007- The Year In Review- Fruit Wrinkles

I became a believer in physical reincarnation this year when our beloved Mary returned to us in a new body. She didn't quite get the markings right but they're morphing every day, especially around the eyes. Mary lived to the ripe old age of 19 and a half, but decided she wanted more. Every day with her (we renamed her "Fruit Wrinkles") is a joy.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Wyrd New Jersey- The Tree of Death

A year ago today, I gassed up the Saturn and took a short road trip out to the final resting place of Edward Alexander Crowley (1875-1947). I had discovered that his ashes had been buried practically in my backyard while browsing through an old issue of Weird New Jersey at a book store (appropriately named "Pandora's"). I came upon the revelation that Karl Germer, Crowley's successor as leader of the OTO, had either buried or scattered the beast's ashes near a tree on the grounds of his "estate" in Hampton, NJ. By doing a little more reading on the topic I was able to pinpoint where the estate had been and decided to check it out sometime.

"Sometime" came about 6 months or so after reading the article. You see, I have a confession to make: although I'm fascinated by the man's colorful biography, I never got the whole Crowley thing. About 20 years ago, one of my roommates ran off to follow the Grateful Dead and left behind a bunch of occult books like The Kabbalah Unveiled by McGregor Mathers and The Book of Thoth by Crowley. I tried reading some of these books and just didn't get it. My brain just doesn't work that way. I loved the Casteneda books, though.

I stopped at the Cross of Lorraine gas station before starting my journey. Hilariously and synchronistically, There was a Jeep parked there, brandishing a homemade wheelcover featuring the Beast of X-Men fame! I've long suspected that Crowley was essentially a practical joker, was he orchestrating his Kaufmanesque gags from beyond the grave?

After a short drive on one of NJ's increasingly hazardous expressways, I hit the highlands. Hampton is not far from the sprawl, but is a world away. It's largely rural, rustic Jersey. But as with the rest of the Skylands, it's being invaded by strip malls and superstores.

As you can see here, it's also being invaded by pyramids, which are sprouting like mushrooms around here.

Anyhow, after getting lost a few times (and coming across a magnificent-looking ruined Victorian), I found the road which led to the location of the old Germer place. At least as was described in the article.

However, it looked as if the old Germer place was now a working dairy farm. I didn't think it prudent to go knock on the door and say, "Oh, hi there. I'm looking for the earthly remains of the Wickedest Man (no longer) Alive, the Great Beast 666. Could you help me out?" That kind of crazy talk can earn you an ass full of birdshot in Hampton.

Feeling slightly stupid, I scanned the grounds, trying to see if any tree seemed particularly gnarled or evil. Was there an unearthly light hovering over any of them, preferably in a color unknown to our light spectrum? Well, see for yourself...

Feeling slightly defeated, I left. Was this the place? I passed the bend in the railroad tracks described by a Hamptonite in the article, so it seemed like it was. Sigh.

Ashes to ashes, Uncle Al.

I stopped at the Golden Arches before getting on the highway home. Much to my amusement, when I came out someone had parked next to me brandishing a Thule brand rack. Oh, Aleister, you're a panick!
So, at the end of day, no portals opened, no saucers descended, no spirit-beings beckoned and no toads rained from the sky. I felt a little sad for the old Beast. He - like so many other practitioners of the dark arts - died penniless, miserable and forgotten. And his earthly remains now reside beneath a cow pasture in the New Jersey sky country. Perhaps the mischievous old scamp would appreciate the humor in it.

EDIT: In a real time synchronicity, I wander over to Jake's place after posting this and discover the same motifs were going through his mind...

Saturday, December 29, 2007

2007- The Year In Review- Volcano Girl

In the Journal of Evolutionary Psychology, DJ Moores wrote of Jung's theories that scapegoating and ritual sacrifice spring from the ego's inability to deal with its Shadow- the accumulation of negative emotions that all of us struggle with, but that the pious and the devout in particular are unable to accept in themselves:

The shadow is most commonly encountered, according to Jungian theory, in projection. In an attempt to defend itself, the threatened ego projects the undesirable traits onto the "other"--people we hate, groups we marginalize, and figures we demonize. This is the surest way to maintain the monarchy of the ego, for to experience the shadow as a projection outside of self is to distance oneself from one's inner demons. Scapegoating is, therefore, pure shadow projection. The ancient Hebrew practice of ritually loading one goat with all of the tribe's sins and offering the other as a sacrificial slaughter to Yahweh was a symbolic attempt to appease the tribal shadow. Other cultures, such as the pre-Columbian Mexicans and the Carthaginians, used captured warriors and even children for the same purpose. The shadow, according to Jung, can never be eliminated but only accommodated and assimilated. Attempts to eliminate it, as in scapegoating, result in a doubling effect, whereby we split off the undesirable parts of ourselves and/or our tribe, project it onto other people, and self righteously condemn them for traits we ourselves possess.
In our schizophrenic, puritan/libertine culture, we've perfected the art of ritual scapegoating. Instead of virgins, we have whores; Paris, Nicole, Lindsay, Anna Nicole, Amy, Tara- but most of all Britney. 2007 was her year, and she played the role of sacrificial meltdown to the hilt. All of our shame and gluttony and lust has been tied around her neck like a millstone, and her antics have shielded our collective ego from facing up to its own Shadow.

A few weeks after a bloated, drug-addled Britney offered herself up for ritual humiliation on the MTV awards, this item quietly appeared in the Times of London; "Incas fattened up their children before sacrifice on the volcano"
Before being chosen as sacrificial victims, the boy and girl had followed a typical peasant diet. This raises the possibility that they were chosen from among the Incas’ conquered subjects and killed not only to pacify the mountain gods, but also to instil terror and respect for an imperial power. “It looks to us as though the children were led up to the summit shrine in the culmination of a year-long rite, drugged and then left to succumb to exposure,” said Timothy Taylor of the University of Bradford, one of the lead researchers.

“Although some may wish to view these grim deaths within the context of indigenous belief systems, we should not forget that the Inca were imperialists too and the treatment of such peasant children may have served to instil fear and facilitate social control over remote mountain areas.”

The Incas were pikers- we are far more sadistic. Now we fatten these attention-starved narcissists up with fame, drugs, booze, money and sex, and then they are sacrificed to the satanic gods of celebrity culture through fatal exposure to ritual humiliation. The saddest part of it is that these girls seem to revel in their own destruction. Whatever it takes to get on the cover of People or Us.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Nine Eleven Ten Thirteen

There are times when art becomes reality. The pilot for X-Files spinoff The Lone Gunmen , which eerily predicted a 9/11 scenario, is perhaps one of the most notorious examples of this.

Some theorists have pointed at that episode as proof of government foreknowledge of the attacks, yet if you actually pay attention to the dialog in the episode (included in the clip above), it seems unlikely that someone in the government would sign off on such inflammatory rhetoric.

But given the various contacts that Chris Carter had with people inside the government security apparatus, it's entirely possible that people within certain agencies were feeding Carter certain scenarios from intelligence briefings as story ideas. It's even possible that some factions within the intelligence community were using the show to warn people of what other, more nefarious factions were up to. Stranger things have happened.

In an interview with Alex Jones, Gunman Dean Haglund ("Langley") stated that agents from the FBI and NASA would approach Chris Carter with story ideas. Haglund also claimed that the CIA would send people to Hollywood parties to keep tabs on what was being filmed, and said that before The X-Files premiered, a CIA psychic approached Carter and ensured him that his project would be successful.

What is also possible is that Carter and his team got the idea for the Gunmen pilot from the 1978 cult film, The Medusa Touch, in which a psychic psychotic played by Richard Burton steers a jet into an office tower to prove his telekinetic powers to his psychiatrist, played by the radiant Lee Remick. Given the fact that an X-Files episode named "Medusa" aired shortly before the Lone Gunmen pilot, it's likely that the producers were indeed inspired by this film. "Medusa" takes place in Boston, where two of the 9/11 planes took off from, which might be an talking point for the foreknowledge side. For me, however, the coincidence of motifs between The Medusa Touch and the Gunmen pilot argues for an even more powerful force than human conspiracy.

Some people have mentioned the Tower trump of the Tarot in relation to 9/11. This is extremely frustrating to me (as is a lot of the conspiracy-driven symbology out there). There's only one building in The Tower trump and duality is an all-important concept in the esoteric tradition. And there are two other trumps in the famous Rider/Waite Tarot that are much more compelling in relation to the incident.

The Moon trump is one. An ill-omened card, it pictures two towers and flames falling from the sky. The theme of duality is continued with two threatening canines, a wolf and a dog. Emerging from the water is a crayfish, perhaps symbolizing the sign of Cancer, which is identified with the Moon. The card is the 18th card of the tarot, 18 being the sum of 6+6+6.

The number "666" comes to us from the 13th chapter of Revelations, which opens with a vision of the Beast coming up from the water, just as crabs and crayfish do. The proximity of the water to the two towers recalls the World Trade Center, which was close to the Hudson River. Strangely, the sky is blue here and the Moon more closely resembles the Sun, calling to mind that fateful September morning. Maybe the dog and the wolf are calling out a warning to the towers that the Beast is approaching. When you see this card through the eyes of the dreaming mind- or the prophetic one- it takes on terrifying overtones.

The Death card is even more compelling, and adds all-important Templar symbolism to the mix. Here we see Death as a knight on horseback, for my money a transparent nod to the Poor Knights. Cementing this connection are the dead king and the soon-to-be-dead Pontiff, recalling the swift revenge the Templars exacted on their tormentors King Philip and Pope Clement. The Death Card is the thirteenth trump, bringing us back to the 13th chapter of Revelations. His white horse seems to be a reference to Revelation 6:8, the four dying figures perhaps a numerological reference to the one-fourth of humanity prophesied to die in that passage. Next to the Roman numerals for 13 is a white rose with ten petals, giving us that all important 10/13.

But for my money the action is in the background. In the river there is a Norman longboat, perhaps a tidy reference to the Templars' Norman origins. And facing the sunrise are two towers, acting as the gateway to a large city. Incredibly, the two towers natually resemble an eleven and between them are nine rays. But even more incredible to me- someone who is very familiar with the area in question- is how much the scene reminds me of a view of lower Manhattan from across the Hudson River in New Jersey.

When we see the card from the dreaming mind's eye, it very much resembles a symbolic view of lower Manhattan from across the Hudson River in New Jersey. Almost like this view from Liberty State Park, which pictures a proposed 9/11 memorial. Or this view below, which recalls the tidal pool in the Death trump.

Do these cards depict a century-old foreknowledge of the attack, or something much more compelling? Did NASA cook up a "Face on Mars" hoax based on an obscure old Jack Kirby story? Did I submit my X-Files dream to Ten Thirteen Productions so they could adapt it for the "Provenance/Providence" (the latter being episode 9.11, by the way) two parter? Or does the dreaming mind- the same as the prophetic or creative mind- tap into something that transcends time and space?

Now, I have no doubt at all that there is intentional symbolism in the media, or that predictive programming is a reality. That stuff can be fascinating, but what's much more fascinating is when definitive symbols or portents appear without the aid of human agency. Those moments when the Collective Unconscious sends signals to the reptilian brain and alerts us to forces and energies outside of our awareness.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Saint Albarn

Blur and Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn has called for celebrity culture to be "dismantled" - starting by getting rid of talent shows like The X Factor.

"We need to dismantle very significant parts of our culture and really re-examine them. I suppose you start with the celebrity thing."

He added: "There's just so many things I would alter. I think for a start you have to get rid of things like The X Factor immediately."

He also said he wanted to "get rid of 99% of the media".

2007- The Year In Review- Knights Templar

October saw the 700th anniversary of the public suppression of the Knights Templar. Happily, the Vatican miraculously discovered papers clearing the Templars of the charges against them. Of course, the "papers" were "discovered" six years before they were publicized, but, you know, timing is everything.

Washington celebrated by putting the new-model Templars on public display for a week or so (the bit about the "lighted sun-visors" is priceless.)

France celebrated by letting England beat them at rugby on October 13th. The British papers made sure the symbolism was obvious even to their dumbest readers.

The New York Times joined in the fun with this unsubtle bit of symbolism.

And the United Nations observed the occasion by incorporating the Templar cross into their logo for the 60th-odd year. The past is prologue.

2007- The Year In Review- Led Zeppelin

The big news in music was Led Zeppelin's reunion concert at London's Millennium Dome, now renamed O2 or something. Of course, it's simply a large-scale womb symbol, so it's an appropriate site for the Mighty Zep's rebirth. That clicking sound you hear is David Icke's teeth chattering.

In a related story, Edinburgh residents sprinkled for the May Queen.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Worst Time of the Year

When you're an adult, there's no more depressing time of the year than the week after Christmas. The kids love it; they're off playing with their new presents, enjoying their vacation. Yet it always seems colder and grayer the day after Christmas, and only the promise of New Year's Eve is there to brighten the gloom. And if there was ever a month or two that needed a new, major holiday, it's January and February. In the colder climes, the lack of Sun and the freezing, wet mess that falls from the sky every other day or so makes life almost intolerable.

Kate Bush enlivened this deadly week for me a couple years back when she released her long-awaited comeback album, Aerial. I got the album with that ghastly bane of Christmas spirit, a gift certificate. The songs were all hymns to the Sun and the Sea, full of the sensual kookiness we've all come to expect from her. Albums can imprint themselves on the seasons for me. Type O Negative's October Rust came to identify itself with the Christmas season some years back and I tend to gravitate towards angry yet life-affirming music like Disturbed's Believe or old hardcore in the dreary winter months.

The worst winter in my recent memory was the 2002-2003 season. It started snowing in early November and we had frost as late as May. It was that year I really understood why the ancients worshipped the Sun. I couldn't imagine living through that hell without a car and central heating, never mind grocery stores filled with imported produce and pharmacies stocked with medicines for your sick kids.

It's my belief that a lot of this fertility symbolism comes from the north and emerged full force during the Ice Age. It's obvious to any thinking person that the Sun is the author of all life on this planet. But it's easy to overlook it, particularly in the modern age of oil heat and electric light. It seems reasonable to me that the cold snap forced a lot of people south and they brought their Solar piety with them. Those long, cold, dark winters would make the return of the Sun's strength in the Spring and Summer of the absolute utmost concern to those people. I can't imagine this type of religion emerging in the desert, where Mother Nature is seen as someone else's whore and the Sun is your most bitter enemy.

Personally, I appreciate the beauty and poetry of these ancient Solar/fertility beliefs, but modern astronomy forces me to acknowledge the endless tapestry of Creation, and that even the Milky Way itself is just a tiny corner in this sentient Universe we are all an expression of.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

The Secret Sequel

'A humanoid member of the "God Squad" is prepared to descend upon planet to generate primitive code of discipline- a first step to eventual civilization.'

Speaking of androgynous dying/rising savior characters, Image Comics are working on a new omnibus for Captain Victory and His Galactic Rangers, Jack Kirby's completely whacked-out series from the early 80's. They've run into trouble, since they can't find all of the film to the original books. They've put out a call to art collectors to volunteer their pages for scanning.

I've got a better idea. Why doesn't Image hire Mike Royer to re-ink and re-letter the entire series? They're already recoloring it, why not go the extra mile? No one sees that material as Kirby's finest, but the ideas and concepts in that series are so completely off the wall and ahead of their time, it deserves to be better serviced than it was by Kirby's original production team. What's more, there are so many riffs and references taken from the Fourth World, it could be marketed as the secret sequel to it (as Kirby originally intended). To be honest, Captain Victory is my favorite post-Kamandi Kirby work, and is chock full of absolutely insane shit. That book is truly "Kirby Unleashed" and I'd love to see the material given its due by having a professional hand finish the art.



Wakey - Wakey!

Accelerated eco-meltdown, no-one gives a damn
Keep everyone in debt while the big banks own their land
Orwellian, Machiavellian, Hegelian dialectic
World management has come, and it's to be expected

You cannot tell the people, but some of us have guessed it
Every day is a blessing, I feel the best yet
Majestic, yes I feel fantastic

War of the worlds again, a necessary lie
Psychological operations show they were right
Religious institutions and the general status quo
Economy and infrastructure - all of it will go

You cannot tell the people, but some of us have guessed it
Every day is a blessing, I feel the best yet
Majestic, yes I feel fantastic

Black triangles flashing red white and blue
Aliens or disinformation, yes, it is true
Contacts been established with critters from the stars
The surface of the Earth will soon resemble Mars

You cannot tell the people, but some of us have guessed it
Every day is a blessing, I feel the best yet
Majestic, yes I feel fantastic
Just like magick
Yes, I feel fantastic

- Jaz Coleman

Monday, December 24, 2007

Bing 'n' Bowie

I love this video for two reasons. First, The Little Drummer Boy was one of my favorite Christmas cartoons when I was a kid, though I can't seem to remember if it was cel or puppet animation. Second of all, there was probably no one less appropriate to sing a hymn to the Baby Jesus in 1977 than David Bowie.

The Sun


The altar at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

As Above, So Below.

Cosmos Kramer

My wife and I have been watching the first season of Soap on DVD. One thing I am struck by is how similar Seinfeld's Kramer is to Burt Campbell, played by Richard Mulligan. Michael Richards must have studied Mulligan's performances carefully, because after watching a few episodes you'll see nearly every tic, whine, double-take and mug that Richards' used for Kramer a couple decades earlier in Mulligan's performances. Not sure if Mulligan was a...

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Winter Fires

Mysterious Britain that explores the ancient European celebrations of Yule, from which we've derived many of our modern Christmas rites. Another essay explains how the ancients celebrated the winter solstice with bonfires. And a quick googling reveals that the practice of Solstice bonfires seems to be experiencing a bit of a comeback.

In their own deeply-demented way, the boys in Killing Joke pay tribute to this ancient Druidic practice with their single "Let's All Go (to the Fire Dances)." The toys and the dancing kids give the vid a seasonal zing. This was from their first difficult period ('82-'84), when they were trying to sound like a sci-fi/heathen/sociopathic version of Adam and the Ants. Their second difficult period ('86-'88) had something to do with them trying to sound like a blow-dried, goth version of Genesis. Happily, they resolved these identity crises about 20 years or so ago and have sounded like Killing Joke ever since.

It's actually the day after the Winter Solstice as I write, and it's a dark, stormy, miserable night, with a cold rain pouring down in sheets. Suffice it to say, it's not terribly festive. Happily, a full moon and clear skies are forecast for Christmas Eve. It makes me wish I was on outer Cape Cod, where the Milky Way can be seen on clear nights. I think everyone should make a pilgrimage to a place where you can truly see the night sky in all of its glory. One needs to experience the full majesty of Creation in order to appreciate the absolute improbability of our fragile, little lives. While you were out on the Cape, you could spend some time in the ocean, which will easily dispense with any lingering feelings of omnipotence you might have left over from your drug days.

Ten Thirteen: A Dream Dance

Synchronicity is a term that is on everyone's mind lately. It's also a term that I'm not sure is always completely understood. The symbolic link between The X-Files and Rockefeller Center that we looked at yesterday is not synchronistic per se. Jung's definition of synchronicity deals more with the collision of the interior and exterior worlds. Someone dreams of an owl and one is sitting in the tree branch above his garage when he returns the next evening. A person finds an old Christmas card from her aunt in a dresser drawer, and the phone rings and she is told the older woman just passed away. These are classical examples of synchronicity.

I think all of us experience these events fairly often. In my mind, they are like receipts the Universal Spirit/Mind gives you when meaningful events transpire. My frustration with syncronicities is not only are they common and difficult to interpet, they're also usually impossible to prove. You can't usually prove you were thinking about that song just before it came on the radio. My obsession is with proof- with connecting the dots between established facts in a way that reveals the greater patterns that we usually overlook.

Which, like pretty much everything else in life, brings me back to The X-Files. I was hooked on the show from day one. I was very interested in UFO's and the paranormal at the time, and was thrilled that a serious-looking show was going to deal with these topics. That first season may not be my favorite overall, but it certainly is the most meaningful to me. I felt like I had been waiting my entire life for a show like that. I fell madly in love with Scully (not necesarily Gillian Anderson, mind you) and couldn't wait for the second season to begin. In fact, it seems I was dreaming about it before it started.
This was in a old journal from 1994/5. Unfortunately I didn't date it, since I wrote it in the dark in the middle of the night. But there's a clue in there that pinpoints when it was written. The chicken-scratch scrawl you see there says:


Here’s what I remember: It was one of those dreams where you watch the action and then take part in it- you know, standard dream-logic. I was Mulder in the dream. I was very badly hurt and had put Scully in danger; Satan was after her. I was crawling through a front door in a house and the Sun was rising outside. In my jacket pocket I had a small book that had prayers in it. A small flame appeared on the bottom edge of a picture frame on a mantlepiece. I knew the flame was the Holy Spirit and that Scully had sent it. I rubbed my finger along the flame and I was restored. This dream lingered with me for some time after. In hindsight, I realized that the image was inspired by this enigmatic illustration, from the cover of Gnosis magazine.
The bit about Emma Samms fascinates me. The reference to "Wayne's World" and "books" seems to be a subconscious reference to an episode of Dave's World that Emma Samms appeared on. The episode in question aired four days before the season premiere of The X-Files. Why I dreamed about it I have no idea, since I never watched the show and it turns out my wife didn't either. But in my mind, it dates the X-Files dream around the time of September 1994. I do remember telling the people I worked with about the dream, who even in 1994 were all too familiar with my X-Files obsession.
Semi-gratuitous Emma Samms jpg

I didn't think much about the dream until several years later. When TNT used to run mini-marathons of The X-Files every night, I used the opportunity to catch up on the last season of the show. I really didn't want a ninth season of the show since I thought the whole thing was wrapped up so beautifully at the end of the eighth. The opening two-parter of season nine was a disaster, so I basically stopped watching until the end. But I was glad I did finally watch those episodes, since once you got past the wretched opener the ninth season was pretty frickin' excellent (for the most part).
Semi-gratuitous cryptographical jpg

The next mytharc two-parter was something else entirely- a return to the deeply subversive ancient astronaut storyline of "The Sixth Extinction" series. I mentioned "Provenance" and "Providence" yesterday, but didn't mention the scenes which- quite synchronistically- correspond to the dream I had eight years prior.

In "Provenance" an FBI agent named Robert Comer crashes his motorcycle while sneaking over the US/Canada border. He is carrying a piece of a spaceship along with rubbings of religious texts taken from the surface of it. 

Comer is "straight as a ruler" (bonus Masonic metaphor) agent sent to investigate a UFO cult (led by a Gulf War vet named Josepho) goes over to the "dark side" and begins believing in the ET threat himself. This point should be rather strongly punctuated- Comer is now Mulder, a promising young FBI agent whose career is derailed by his belief in aliens. Like Mulder in "The Sixth Extinction" three-parter, he is also directly affected by exposure to an extraterrestrial artifact.

Now let's get to the notes from my 1994 dream and compare them to the later episodes:


In the 2002 episodes, Comer is opposing an Antichrist-like cult, who believe that the super-soldiers (bonus comic book term) take over the planet in preparation for the second coming of the alien messiah. Reyes later names Josepho as a "false prophet" or an agent of Satan, who seeks to help the Colonists wipe humanity off the face of the planet.


All of the Scully's in this case- Momma Scully, baby Scully and Scully Scully. Comer ends up in Scully's apartment and beats up on the women and tries to kill the baby.


In a scene that is an instant replay of my dream some seven years earlier, Comer- the FBI agent who is intentionally identified/confused with Mulder- is seen crawling on his belly after his crash. The Sun is out, just as in my dream.


Just as I-as-Mulder pulled out a small prayer book from my jacket pocket, Comer takes out a piece of the spaceship (upon which religious texts are inscribed) and uses it to heal himself.


This shot gave me the willies, particularly in context of the story and the dream. I didn't write this down in the notes, but in the dream the flame was the Holy Spirit and it had been sent by Scully and was on a picture frame on a mantlepiece.

In the story, Scully is talking to Agent Reyes who is standing in Doggett's hospital room as he lay in a coma- note lamp (flame) next to picture frame and the mantlepiece.

Later, Doggett (Mulder's replacement in the X-Files) is revived while Scully- her body charged with the healing radiation of the spaceship fragment - sits by his bedside. Just as Mulder did in "Sixth Extinction," Doggett temporarily gains psychic powers through his second-hand exposure to the radiation.

Now it gets really weird.

Agent Comer is played by the estimable Neal McDonough, who was born the same year as myself in the next town over from my place of birth.

In fact, Neal was born 19 weeks and 5 days before me, and those two numbers (in the form of 19.5) seem to have some mystical significance I can't quite understand.

Weirder still, McDonough's next TV role after The X-Files was as Detective David McNorris in the series Boomtown. His co-star in that was none other than Donnie Wahlberg, formerly of New Kids on the Block.

The Wahlbergs live a block away from the house I grew up in Braintree.

 My mother used to tell me that during the height of New Kids mania, armies of pre-pubescent girls used to march down our street on Saturday mornings on the way to the Wahlbergs' house, in hopes of catching a glimpse at the group's "bad boy," Donnie. Marky was not yet famous then.

You may not be interested in the Mysteries, but the Mysteries are interested in you.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

A Perfect Marriage

You couldn't ask for a better marriage of sound and image than Killing Joke set to clips from an apocalyptic monster movie about enormous, mutated space reptiles laying a modern city to waste. It kind of makes all other Rock videos redundant. Actually, it kind of makes everything redundant.

Have Yourself a Siouxsie Little Christmas

Here is Siouxsie and the Banshees (including Robert Smith of the Cure) singing an old French Christmas carol. And doing a beautiful job of it, I might add.

This is my favorite Christmas carol- "Israel," released in that magic time in 1980 I wrote about earlier. The video isn't very appropriate, but that's the way it went back then....

The Same Motif

Knowles' Law: When in doubt about a particular esoteric symbol, consult The X-Files. As I wrote about in my X-Files X-Egesis, Chris Carter posited that aliens were the creators not only of humankind, but of our religions as well. When this idea was first explored in "The Sixth Extinction" storyline, Mulder and Scully were keenly aware that the ancient astronauts left behind spacecraft that had miraculous power (Scully's fertility was restored by her exposure to the ship, for instance). In the two part episode "Provenance/Providence" Carter and Spotnitz return to these themes, but have their new, inexperienced agents Doggett and Reyes mistake the power of the ship (which they both are affected by through rubbings of the ships' surface and a piece of the craft itself) for the power of Divine intervention.

So what does this all have to do with our Yuletide ponderings of Rockefeller Center's esoteric symbols? Well, if you believe as I do that our golden friend there is actually Mithras, and that Mithras himself is nothing but a politically expedient reinterpretation of Horus, it's interesting to note that the same exact symbol of the Sun god, the pyramidal object, the rotating ring and the heavenly shaft of light repeat themselves in these X-Files episodes.

In the story, Scully's baby William is kidnapped by a gang of heretical Christian UFO worshippers, who believe the ship to be something like the Ark of the Covenant. Throughout the stories William is seen to control the piece of the ship a rogue FBI agent brings back to Washington. I won't spoil the rest of the story, but suffice it to say that same conjunction of symbols repeats itself in the climax. It's also interesting to note that there are 17 cultists standing around the revolving stargate wheel, 17 seeming to be the esoteric number of Horus (more on that topic in the days to come as well).

Let me just note here that Scully's first child, the ill-fated Emily, made her first appearance in the episode "Christmas Carol." Those episodes drew heavily on the symbolism of the Persephone stories, which we will also look at in the near future. Her last appearance was in an episode dealing with apocryphal legends of the Nephilim...

Friday, December 21, 2007

Masonic Manhattan: The Hierarchy

See previous posts for explanation. The Fire/Sun god overlooking the skating rink reminds me of the symbolism Lewis used in The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. Above Prometheus/Mithras/Horus' head is TGAOTU. I do believe the whole tableau is meant to be seen from that worm eye's view included below.

My question is did the Rockefellers have any idea what they were signing off on when they commissioned this artwork? My gut says no. This type of imagery was very popular at the time- in future posts we'll look at the '39 World's Fair. The artists and architects would certainly understand what they were saying, but all the plutocrats who commissioned work like this throughout New York probably didn't care all that much. Their main concern was probably that the art looked classy and Romanesque so it could be a testament to their wealth and power. I can't think of anything the Rockie's or anyone else for that matter put up using this kind of symbolic art once it became unfashionable. Well, maybe Trump and his nymphs (see Doonesbury for more on that).

When archaeologists are puzzled by how the Egyptians could build the Great Pyramids and then a hundred years or so later built crummy pyramids that started falling apart before they were finished, they need look no further than New York. In the 20's and 30's you saw magnificent buildings like Rockefeller Center and the Chrysler Building and then after the war you saw a bunch of retarded-looking glass boxes that seem to be inspired by crossword puzzles. Things can degenerate astonishingly quickly, particularly in our super-heated modern culture. Look at the churches built in the 19th Century and Soviet-looking brick boxes they put up in the 20th.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Masonic Manhattan: The Grand Architect

Above our friend Mithras/Prometheus on the face of 30 Rock is none other than the GAOTU. The image seems inspired by Blake, though far more idealized.

The placement above the head of Mithras/Prometheus is not accidental either. We are seeing the universal heirarchy, according to the high esoteric tradition. It's fascinating that M/P overlooks an ice rink. There's certainly some kind of symbolism at work there as well.

Here's a site with more photos. Here are more. More still.

I went by this afternoon, it was absolutely packed with shoppers and revelers. The entire site creates such a festive atmosphere. Cities need these kinds of spaces and we need more meaningful public art. Every time I think of the abstract sculptures that started popping up in cities in the 60's and 70's I want to strangle someone.

This is fantastic- this frieze faces the front doors of St. Patrick's Cathedral. I love the defiance in the characters faces. It's like something from a Jim Morrison lyric, about being naked and unashamed.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Masonic Manhattan: Look At It This Way

The closer we get to Christmas, the more I'm thinking about Rockefeller Center. I guess it's a regional thing, but again- anyone even remotely interested in symbolism should at least take a virtual tour of the premises. In many ways, it's the crown jewel of Mythical Manhattan.

Now, I realize that not a lot of people are inclined to look at our friend Mithras there from that angle, but there's no doubt the placement of that statue is not accidental - this is a character whose origin is heavenly, but whose birth is earthly. The waterfalls also seem to be placed in order to complete or to animate the impression that 30 Rock creates- a beam or shaft shooting down from the heavens.

One of the things I've noticed about that statue is that the golden boy there is not chained to the rock as Prometheus was, rather he seems to be emerging out of it as did Mithras in his birth story. The rock also seems to conform to a triangular shape, giving a pyramidical impression. The first thing that that occurred to me after seeing that photo was how much the juxtaposition of elements- the shaft or pillar from Heaven, pyramid form, and Zodiac ring - reminded me of the movie poster for the original Stargate. It then occurred to me that our golden friend may not be Mithras either, but Horus. Like there's a difference.

And the same motifs repeat on the poster for this cinematic masterpiece...

Or, more ominously, this one as well...

The movie posters I can understand- designers are always looking at each other's work. But based on the Rockefeller Center thing, I would venture to guess that this particular juxtaposition of elements has some greater meaning. You don't spend millions of dollars building a skyscraper, a plaza and tossing in some statues and a waterfall or three without planning every single detail to the last inch. I'm not sure what the latest theories on the pyramids are this week, but for my part I see them as ceremonial wombs, places of rebirth. There's an unsubtle thread of fertility symbolism at play here, with perhaps the Stargate/Zodiac symbolizing Eternity. There are other examples of this little trio at work in other movie posters, but they seem a bit more open to interpretation.

Given his close association with the Rockefeller Family, I wonder what influence Jung may have had in all of this. Certainly, that sub rosa Mithras jibes with Uncle Carl's obsessions. Could the Plaza at Rockefeller Center be Jung's secret masterwork?