Spiritualism, Theurgy, As Heuristic Phenomenology

altered_boy

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#1
Hello all

These chapters do not overtly discuss Forteana, but as most of you are aware, the line between occultism and Forteanism is a slim one.

These are the next two chapters in my novel's BETA release. even if you have not read any other chapters, do not be discouraged to take a looksee.

Chapter 7: Facets of the Anima [20k Leagues Under the Sea] http://www.thelastamericanvagabond.com/anthony-tyler/facets-anima-20k-leagues-under-sea/
- discusses the science and phenomenology of Sleep paralysis as a case study. the anthropology of sleep paralysis that date back to Sumeria onward, eventually playing part in the symbolism of the Mother of the ancient Mystery schools (i.e. Lilith, Isis, etc). also dissects the relationship that Jungian psychology has to practical esotericism. considerations of the Tree of Death, the archetypal manifestations of chaos.

Chapter 8: Boats and Microscopes and Bottles of Elixirs and Raw Steak and a Bunch of Dive Gear [Dive Encounters] http://www.thelastamericanvagabond....XA_-gWJljngDNq-8Eur9FvbSDiuYJrF6lGrisPlTA04Y0
- talking about gods, angels, demons, and genetics. the psychological, heuristic mechanics of ritual and ceremony. building on what I have discussed about archetypes and memes, I explain what this looks like scientifically when put into practice. discussions of Solomon's Greater Key and Lesser Keys, and considerations of CG Jung's own theurgical experiments. lots of hypnosis and neurophenomenology.

We cannot outplay nature and its adaptations. we must work with it, even if this work should challenge the boundaries of common explanations.

No New Age BS here. This is science and esotericism. And while my research is esoterically slanted, I often discuss Forteana throughout the chapters--I think it is highly likely that Forteana overall interacts with the human psyche similar to that of the esoteric.

Cheers to you all
 

altered_boy

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#2
Need I remind you all of William Hurt's great monologue in Altered States:

"Our atoms are six billion years old. We've got six billion years of memory in our minds. Memory is energy! It doesn't disappear — it's still in there. There's a physiological pathway to our earlier consciousnesses. There has to be; and I'm telling you it's in the goddamned limbic system… I think that that true self, that original self, that first self is a real, mensurate, quantifiable thing, tangible and incarnate. And I'm going to find the fucker.”
 

AlchoPwn

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#3
Ramona, the feminine of Ramon, means "Mighty & Wise", but derives from the German Raymond which means "Protecting Hands". Mermaids often perform a protective role for sailors. On the other hand, your Ramona seems to want to hypnotise you like a classic siren from Odysseus. I hope this treatment does the name justice. Leap in any time Ramonmercado, it is your name after all...

What if she ate me down there, or kept me a prisoner of circumstance aboard a monolithic structure, Captain-Nemo-style? On the other hand–what if she gave me gills and brought me to Atlantis? I decided to take my chances. “Okay, let’s find some sort of conclusion here. I’ll buy.” I got on my hands and knees, ready to submerge my head, when I looked over my shoulder at her one more time. “I’ll see you on the other side, yeah?”
I have highlighted this, because I thought that the word generally used here is "bite", which would be amusing as it represents the fish catching the man.
People often fail to find much value in the spiritual because they are afraid of the plunge, and even if they do plunge, they don’t know how deep to go or how deep they can go, or if they will ever remember the way home. Many people give up halfway through the journey because they don’t understand that it can sometimes take twenty-thousand leagues before we dive deep enough to find anything monolithic. It is usually in the deepest, darkest depths that we tend to find the brightest light—eventually. And if not for the juxtaposition of the depths, we would have never recognized the light, thus like the Ying and Yang, the dark brings forth the light. Admittedly, the light will be briefly set aside in this chapter, but rest assured that diagnosing an ailment is a critical first-step towards aiming the treatment methods.
I think everyone is interested in the spiritual, but it always comes with an implicit threat. Have you read any Thomas Ligotti? His take on horror is that in the modern era we no longer see things in terms of "good" and "evil", and instead see things in terms of "sane" and "insane", and the threat of insanity is something that people fear. Matters of the spirit implicitly mean a step by choice into the irrational. There is also the matter of loss of control, which many people have a learned fear of, generally with good reason, in a world where people compete with each other all the time.

It is also worth pointing out that dreams often serve as a precursor to consciousness rebooting, and the brain triggers this with a sudden shot of adrenaline, and the "code" for this occurring seems to be making one's dream take a left turn into danger. External stimuli will be tuned into the dreamscape, for example, snoring can become manifest as a machine, or an animal in the underbrush. This liminal state is where sleep paralysis can occur, as one has to be conscious but still actually dreaming, as the adrenaline has kicked in too slowly, producing a slow bleed of rising excitement that we register as emerging threat, and yet we cannot move until the adrenaline reaches a sufficient level. This effect seems to happen more often in the presence of old 1980s style plastic-wood-finished red-LED alarm clocks due to their leaking Faraday fields interfering with the brain's electrochemistry. It is also worth pointing out that schizophrenia can be described as a leakage of dream states into the consciousness when it is supposed to be fully awake.

To explain this in some esoteric terms, take the symbolism of Hiram Abiff, the archetypal Freemason.
I just twigged onto something I hadn't realised before. Hiram Abiff's orphandom is symbolic of his separation from God, and the narrative of the initiations is that of a rejoining, ergo, the re-ligio (the Latin origin of the word "religion").

Today, Lilith survives overall as a poignant double-edged symbol of both feminine empowerment and destruction. As we shall discuss in a moment, the deeper nuance to the dark anima is part of the alchemical transmutation.
Okay, this is where we move into issues that we have covered earlier. I really like how you have treated the subject matter as far as I have read. Sadly, as I'm writing this I have realised that I have to head out in a couple of minutes time, so I'll get back to this.
 
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AlchoPwn

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#4
To its credit, the psychiatric community has begun to correlate neurosis with the onset of sleep paralysis symptoms. It has become noted that sleep paralysis is more likely to occur if the subject has a history with severe PTSD from something like sexual abuse, violent trauma, but also things like anxiety disorders, panic disorders, narcolepsy and even Parkinson’s disease.
Thanks to drawing my attention to this. If I am not mistaken these results are pretty recent. Good catch!
A study conducted in 2014 by Jahal Baland and VS Ramachandran reads, “We specifically propose that this perceived intruder is the result of a hallucinated projection of the genetically ‘hard-wired’ body image (homunculus), in the right parietal region; namely, the same circuits that dictate aesthetic and sexual preference of body morphology.” A follow-up study by the same names was also released in 2017, further relating the phenomenology of the shadow people to the brain’s Mirror Neuron System—which we have discussed the implications of in prior chapters. In terms of what is happening within the brain during sleep paralysis, it appears that the Mirror Neuron System plays a critical role.
LOL mirror neurons here too? They're a bit of a synchronicity in my life atm, or you are in league with my workmates to troll me hard. :)
Furthermore, what could this help explain about the psychedelic experience, or even unexplainable phenomena like the paranormal or cryptid monsters in the wilderness? This question is, admittedly, based purely on my own speculation—but it’s an idea grounded by data and I think it is a much better than a lot of the other running explanations of the unexplainable.
Your position is entirely plausible. Too plausible. The issue of diminishing wiggle room rears its head I fear. On a side note, have we discussed tulpas aka egregores ? They are tangential but relevant to this point you are making.

In terms of what you have written, I feel a bit remiss that I don't have more criticisism to offer. But that is another way of offering praise. Your writing style is clear, and your use of poetry is illustrative without being pretentious. Your points are well made and reinforced with well used reference material. Better yet, I enjoyed reading it. If I were grading this as a paper, I think you would have reason to be proud of the mark I'd give it. Good, and more importantly, interesting work.
 

AlchoPwn

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#5
On to the second part...
In other words, religion and spiritualism represented metaphorical truths where literal truths were unattainable. Certainly, they were not to be taken at face-value, and plenty superstitious spiritual ideas are scientifically ill-founded. But there is a core archetypal-memetic value that spiritualism overall has upheld cross-culturally, throughout history. This is not a mish-mash of all world-cultures seen as one—but an analysis of all world cultures as developing within the same biological, neurological parameters. This is evolutionary psychology, not New-Age.
High five! :yeahthat::agree: A good point that you expressed that concisely and cogently.
A demon, in this archetypal sense, is what occurs when a human being is entering into a psychodynamic Faustian-bargain with their own psychological Shadow complex, which represents the unknown mechanisms of the unconscious mind—when we make “deals with the devil.” Once the deal is made, the demon, like the vampire who has been invited into the house, is now free to roam within the space that the agreement allows. Naturally, every psychologically stable human being has a bargain with their Shadow complex—it’s a necessary adaptation mechanism, and those who do not have an adequate bargain are subjugated to paranoid delusions, hallucinations, agoraphobia, hysteria, et cetera. The overall point, however, is that unless we have taken calculated, decisive steps in a healthy relationship with our shadow, the hangers-on begin to sink their teeth into the contract loopholes. Let us remember that the shadow is all that which we do not actively know, but still process mentally on some level. A healthy person acknowledges the presence of the shadow, but understands that regardless of the unknown, they will still be able to act in accord with their core values and goals. Dante’s spirit guide through purgatory and hell, Virgil, is the shining positive example of what the shadow should be for any given human being. Although the shadow can be hellish at times, it does not mean that we must bargain with devils to undo the nightmare. We can simply find our way to the exit—but this is much trickier to do than say.
This is thoughtful stuff, and I needed to unpick it a bit. When you first mention the Faustian Bargain, I thought this might be a reference to cognitive dissonance (Cog Dis Link), as experienced when one transgresses one's own moral code. The notion being that when one goes against one's moral code deliberately, knowingly doing the wrong thing, there is a price to pay in one's self conception, and the irrational finds its way in through the sense of guilt and other negative emotions. Is this what you mean when you say:

"Naturally, every psychologically stable human being has a bargain with their Shadow complex—it’s a necessary adaptation mechanism, and those who do not have an adequate bargain are subjugated to paranoid delusions, hallucinations, agoraphobia, hysteria, et cetera."

...or have I missed the point? To clarify my own reading, I thought that this paragraph was outlining how the mechanism of the shadow operates, and how it can drive the individual into irrational behavior as a compensatory reaction when we knowingly transgress our own moral boundaries. You conclude by saying:

"Although the shadow can be hellish at times, it does not mean that we must bargain with devils to undo the nightmare. We can simply find our way to the exit—but this is much trickier to do than say." (my underlining added for emphasis on the issue of compulsion).

So the issue is, that having dug ourselves into a moral quandry, it is possible to dig ourselves out without making further undersirable "moral compromises", but it is inevitably a tricky and fraught process. I am trying to paraphrase this to make sure I understood what you were getting at. The point being, if I did understand it, good. If not, what didn't I understand? I get the feeling there is more here than I grasped.

Anyhow, I will start up on the Pretas next.
 

altered_boy

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#6
In terms of what you have written, I feel a bit remiss that I don't have more criticisism to offer. But that is another way of offering praise. Your writing style is clear, and your use of poetry is illustrative without being pretentious. Your points are well made and reinforced with well used reference material. Better yet, I enjoyed reading it. If I were grading this as a paper, I think you would have reason to be proud of the mark I'd give it. Good, and more importantly, interesting work.
Hey Al,

many thank-yous for reading. I have worked very painstakingly at this and your compliments note the things I have specifically worked quite hard on. I'm not one to have a big head but all the same I appreciate the regards. :pcheers: it's been a rewarding challenge to write something like a textbook with something like a plotline. 3 more chapters left to edit so I'm almost there.

I thought that the word generally used here is "bite", which would be amusing as it represents the fish catching the man.
LOL, yes you are correct. I used to read a lot of literature and watch a lot of movies that were over my head as a kid, so when I was very young I used to think the phrase was "i'll buy", as in "i'll buy the load of BS you're sellin me", and its just something I kept saying once I realized. its something I specifically say when a woman is trying to slip something over on you. its a pun since the guy is usually buying things for the woman, its like "alright i'll buy this too so you feel better", hahaha.

Ramona, the feminine of Ramon, means "Mighty & Wise", but derives from the German Raymond which means "Protecting Hands". Mermaids often perform a protective role for sailors. On the other hand, your Ramona seems to want to hypnotise you like a classic siren from Odysseus. I hope this treatment does the name justice. Leap in any time Ramonmercado, it is your name after all...
well, well... I didn't know these definitions of Ramona. very synchronous since this is not her real name, yet I really couldn't have picked a name with better meaning. If you're looking for a laugh, watch the movie Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. it's odd but its great and hilarious, and the feminine character's name is Ramona Flowers. she's seen first by the main character in a dream and he goes out searching for her. my Ramona loved the movie so because of that it became my pet name for her.

as for the mermaid, she certainly serves a dual purpose in the story. I am using the mermaid as a plot device to describe the gist of the plethora of the different dreams I had. it's a semi-fictional amalgamation of my experiences. all the plot points and phenomena are real parts of my life, but I am the first to admit I took liberties for privacy and narrative-flow. so while she appeared to me once as a mermaid, I have really expanded on the symbolic and scenario to narrate some complex ideas. on one hand, the mermaid is kind of a sea monster, but on the other they are known to help the sailors adrift at sea. I believe that mermaids were known to tempt sailors overboard with their songs as well, or am I incorrect? in any case, the point remains. I certainly attributed the qualities of the siren here to the mermaid to illustrate the personal archetypal context that it symbolized on my journey.

anyways, long story short: as the story comes to an end, Ramona as a woman and the mermaid in my dreams proves to be beatific--she becomes Mighty and Wise, Protective, and Beatific. it thus becomes revealed that the siren was not so much Ramona at all, but my own reaction to Ramona. I do believe that mermaids were manipulative in a siren-ish way at times, but I don't recall where I've heard this so like I said I could be wrong. i wish i could speak more about that but this romance begins to look towards the limits of my understanding. my life is still a work in progress hahahah. Ramona and I are on good terms, but we're at a lengthy standstill, and i'm sure I'll come to understand the details that much more when I speak to her about these specifics one day.
 

altered_boy

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#7
Also somewhat interesting to note that Ramona is Capricorn and I am a pisces. earth and water. however much practical information the astrology provides, I certainly made use of the poetic symbolism in the writing.

I think everyone is interested in the spiritual, but it always comes with an implicit threat. Have you read any Thomas Ligotti? His take on horror is that in the modern era we no longer see things in terms of "good" and "evil", and instead see things in terms of "sane" and "insane", and the threat of insanity is something that people fear. Matters of the spirit implicitly mean a step by choice into the irrational. There is also the matter of loss of control, which many people have a learned fear of, generally with good reason, in a world where people compete with each other all the time.

It is also worth pointing out that dreams often serve as a precursor to consciousness rebooting, and the brain triggers this with a sudden shot of adrenaline, and the "code" for this occurring seems to be making one's dream take a left turn into danger. External stimuli will be tuned into the dreamscape, for example, snoring can become manifest as a machine, or an animal in the underbrush. This liminal state is where sleep paralysis can occur,
that strikes at the very heart of everything I am talking about. I am not familiar with Ligotti but the sentiment sounds very Lovecraftian and I couldn't agree more.

So the issue is, that having dug ourselves into a moral quandry, it is possible to dig ourselves out without making further undersirable "moral compromises", but it is inevitably a tricky and fraught process. I am trying to paraphrase this to make sure I understood what you were getting at. The point being, if I did understand it, good. If not, what didn't I understand? I get the feeling there is more here than I grasped.
you understand what I'm saying quite well, but you are right that there is an additional implication. what I mean when I reference Virgil is that we must use the shadow as a guide in a way. the shadow must not be THE guide, that is Beatrice and God ultimately, but the shadow is a natural mechanism that we all have, so if we repress it or feed it in negative ways it becomes a monster. but if the shadow, like Virgil, is something that guides us through inevitable struggle and leads us towards something Beatific, then that is everything a person can hope for in their relationship to their shadow. we cannot eradicate it, after all. if anything, the shadow eradicates us and people are left in schizophrenic states, etc.

this is something I attempt to illustrate by the introduction of my friend in Chapter 8. in reality, he was not as versed in the psychology behind his in-depth magick, but he had a solid working knowledge of the psych. in contrast, I had an exceptional understanding of the psychology and only a solid working knowledge of the magick. so he helped me map out my path in a magickal sense a bit more and I explained to him the psychology of it all. but for the sake of plot devices I gave him all sorts of nuggets of wisdom right off the bat, LOL. making him a little more overtly Virgilian.

I am in a constant, enjoyable struggle to make this complex material easily digestible in the chapters, and I hope that my personal narrative helps provide context to the complex material. i'm genuinely glad to hear you don't think it comes across as pretentious or too wordy. :hoff:
 
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