24 December 2005

“Hate”

Hate
Spoken word by Vancouver MC Kyprios of Sweatshop Union. Requires Windows Media Player. Worth watching…

22 December 2005

Fell’s Worthwhile Posts of 2005

According to the 80/20 rule, 80% of results will come out of 20% of what we do. Over the past months, there have been some worthwhile posts and thoughts. I generally use this as a log to record any ramblings I might have, to keep in order ideas or thoughts for later use. I use del.icio.us for the same reason. So out of past posts, here are the highlights. Seperating the figurative 20 from the 80.
  1. The Art of Seduction
    This was one of my first posts. The 24 steps in proper seduction. This is not about relationships; this is more like lions hunting gazelle. You wanna get laid, try this out. You want to find a nice someone to date, stop at about Step 9 and leave the rest to fate. These points preface each chapter in The Art of Seduction, by Robert Greene.

  2. Rites of Passage
    Rob Smith over at Gut Rumbles (fun site) wrote a good piece which I posted here about youth in North America and our rites of passage into adulthood. Not youth, like kid youth, but like us in our twenties and thirties. I've read that it's common to look at youth until the age of 30 now. Which makes me twenty-seventeen. It's true, I shouldn't be allowed out in public, really. Good ol' Tim Boucher followed up with some more commentary, which is also quoted in this post.

  3. Casting sigil magic to get laid
    I don't know whether to call the effects that occur after the casting of a sigil as consequential or subsequential. This is a forewarning for those that would cast sigila in an attempt to get laid. Nothing ever comes about as you'd expect. And it's good to know your true intention, not the one your ego tries to make sense of. Goddamned ego.

  4. Libertarianism & Transhumanism
    Good topics. People seem to host a healthy fear towards both, as both represent, as far as I'm concerned, the further liberation from today's restraints that we live with as not just a society, but as an epoch. Unbridled freedom. Which equals unbridled responsibility for oneself and one's actions.

  5. Today's e-mail from a student
    This was from an earlier talk I had with the Witchcraft & Occult Studies class at the University of Alberta. I edited out her name, but it's an interesting read over how the results of playing with magic can shock and awe. The mind makes a consistent effort to not believe, but when results are noticeable, people begin to freak right out. She was a good sport, though!

  6. The spiritual in design
    My first inklings and thoughts about the similarities of the fields of design and magic. I was doing a lot of contemplation on the meaning of the saying, We do not see the world as it is, we see the world as we are.

  7. Concerning the spiritual in art
    Further discussions with Tim Boucher of Pop Occulture aided in the development of ideas that I am still working with regarding occult principles and design practise. While much of it is being logged by me via del.icou.us, and in my head and scribbled in notebooks currently, it will definitely begin to come forth in the following years. I also began to re-enter the works of the Russian-born French painter, Wassily Kandinsky (1886–1944).

  8. The Philosophy of Photoshop
    Further thoughts inspired by great discussions on Pop Occulture, is my continued thoughts on Tim's original analogy comparing raster and vector graphic formats to Aristotle and Plato, respectively.

  9. Psychopathic paradox
    On the access of information and the burgeoning field of information architecture and design, in regards to the potential for further self-awareness through responsibility to oneself. As control over one's perspectives becomes more evolved and apparent in the individual, reality will begin to shutter into a shadow veil of its once (and current) prison-like hold it has on most civilisations. Dreamtime merges with meatspace via open source!

  10. Gender matters
    This raised some eyebrows on Technoccult when I was guest-editing. The little-known Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research program studies the affects of human consciousness over mechanical equipment. Their results show a difference between how male and female consciousness interacts, which I see mirrored in the numerous persons I've come across in the past who've been introduced to the magic and made personal attempts to get involved. Most end in successful early attempts, then fear, followed by their retreat from their subjective selves and back into the social streams from whence they came.

  11. The future of the market, the future of spirituality
    Inspired by Media Nugget and The Cluetrain Manifesto, taking a look at contemporary issues concerning spirituality and religion when look at through the lens of brand design and marketing. This is the essence of where I want to go with a particular venture of mine in the next decade.

  12. Chaos as a "brand in trouble"
    Following on the heels of the previous entry, my embrace of chaos has never been subtle. I live by its tenets, and have pursued them in life. In work, play, relationships, I can appreciate the order, but it's when the fit hits the shan that we are blessed with the opportunity to gauge how we're doing in the game, overall. Not to get into details, but the fact that I haven't pushed someone down the stairs this month is a testament to my ease of eschewing order in favour of change. In no way do I claim to be its master, but as I observe it I learn more about how to communicate its effects to others (better in time, I say).

  13. Photocopier fractals
    What begins as a look at a novelty photocopier trick digresses into an entry on paradigm management. Wow, I just came up with that. Paradigm management. This is why I like this blog, I never take time to think things through until it needs to go down. Paradigm management. These are two words that hold much power for me, as they define something I've been trying to wrap my head around a lot over the past years.

  14. Who peers back at us from beyond
    Like many, until recently I believed that many of what we refer to as occult intelligences or entities were aspects of the deep consciousness of man. That the observer-created universe would allow, through certain occult rites and knowledge, the evocation or invocation of these intelligences, these Deep Ones, as it were. This was a major turning point as I now begin to understand the abstractions of a Beyond. Hard to put into words, but a worthwhile accomplishment through my continued meditations, subjective explorations, and a continuous quest for knowledge — which allows a framework for me to explore my experiences. Knowledge + Experience = Wisdom.

  15. Waiting is another world
    A fun analogy between service industry culture and cults, and how traumatic situations or relationships can build stronger unions among individuals. Families, friends, and any social clique can benefit from overcoming trauma together.

  16. Design couture
    This post received a lot of hits. There is a hierarchy to wisdom and understanding. This is really what the occult is: a deeper and intimate knowledge of something (or nothing, which is the case when you become enlightened). Yves Saint Laurent said, "A designer who is not also a couturier, who hasn't learned the most refined mysteries of physically creating his models, is like a sculptor who gives his drawings to another man, an artisan, to accomplish." The same can be said of any aspect of one's life, no?

  17. Can products have soul?
    Another entry that received noticeable attention. From an interview between Michael Surtees, of the Society of Graphic Designers of Canada, and Halifax-based artist Jennifer Romita. Everything is, of course, composed of spirit and we all belong to the Universe — G@d, the Demiurge, a cybernetic function embedded in the holographic structure, Flying Spaghetti Monster, whatever. But what does it mean to have a soul? In an inter-subjective universe, what I observe is just as important (or moot) as what you ascribe yourself. Unless, of course, you've escaped such mortal entrapments.

  18. A wee introduction to cymatics
    Cymatics is cooler than two girls making out. The very vibrational essence underpinning language, music, art… and crop circles? Hans Jenny pioneered this field and it's unfortunately not being pursued by enough people in today's world.

  19. Here be demons
    A look at how to possibly bridge a communications gap existing between the Beyond and the observer-created universe through vacuous, self-evolving virtual environments. If we can build a portal by which to communicate with those on the Other Side, this may be the viable abstraction necessary for its design. Especially if language-learning algorithms can be implemented, which I have posted about elsewhere.

  20. Concerning magical parfums
    A lot of people do not realise not only the importance of the olfactory senses in magical operations, let alone the power they have over us.

  21. Towards a pragmatic occultism
    The beginnings of something that will take a lot of work to fully realise on my part, and understand. William S. Burroughs said, "Nothing exists until or unless it is observed. An artist is making something exist by observing it. And his hope for other people is that they will also make it exist by observing it. I call it 'creative observation.' Creative viewing." Now apply what he said to branding a new service initiative crossing spirituality and the subjective monomyth…

  22. Interview: Tim Boucher of Pop Occulture
    I don't claim to be a good interviewer, but it was fun to do and I have a lot of respect for Tim and what he's accomplishing with his site, Pop Occulture. His dedication is admirable and this gives a more personal look into why and what he does. It's a little long — about a five-minute read — but worthwhile for any of his fans.

  23. John Maeda on experience as beauty
    A short entry by myself on something I read on designer John Maeda's blog. In his quest to study simplicity, there is an inherent poetic beauty akin to a master's wisdom that has come to the brink of beginning to understand Zen, or no-thingness.

  24. NIN's Gnostic "Right Where It Belongs"
    Pointing these lyrics out inspired a lot of people apprehensive about the recent Nine Inch Nails album to take another listen, and with positive results. It's often too easy to write off musicians, but there are definitely a few worth spending the time to look further into. In time I'd like to work on a collection and edit it with some DJ and engineer friends of mine, including the likes of k-os, Sweatshop Union, and Tool.

  25. Do you belong to a secret?
    By how do we define our tribal selves? Some elements, like Hollywood films, use such cultural touchstones so ubiquitously as to rend them trite. I remember when punk was fucking punk. Now every teenie-bopper suburban whore has piercings and coloured hair. The faux-hawk came and went, adorning the scalp of every under-educated Rohypnol-bearing date rape jock asshole this side of the hockey rink. Designers must take into account the symbolism and fashion of cultures and their subsequent subcultures. And is possible to engineer the birth of certain symbols and semiotics? A marketer's wet dream, surely. As it is that of a magician, too.

  26. A Metaphysics of Human Interface
    A little ditty I wrote for a design publication in the United States, which explains the theory behind sigila and their construction. And sorta why they work. Never published due to it being out to leftfield of the intended theme of the particular issue I wrote it for.

  27. The mirror as powerful tool
    I do not believe this entry is fully complete, but I brought to light some of the powerful techniques that individuals can learn. By utilising a mirror, one can explore extremely potent results for use in visualisation, paradigm shifting, and even access to the Dreamtime. I even find these exercises can be used to accomplish similar feats of mind as mantras are engineered for: occupying the surface thoughts, allowing one's lucid consciousness to drift beneath that cacophony into a subtler realm.

  28. "Romantic Death"
    This song from The Sun is not only catchy, but the video presents some awesome footage from the Beautiful Agony project of a number of person's faces over the course of self-stimulation and eventual orgasmic climax. I think it's an absolutely beautiful piece. Most people don't watch it just once. Score one point for sexual liberation in the West. Fuck you, Catholicism.

  29. An Introduction to the fascinating patterns of Visual Math
    The last entry worth perusing from 2005 is that of straight-up, pure beauty: that which nature Herself creates. Some of the included visualisations include Platonic geometry, iterative and natural fractals, minimal surfaces, the Golden Mean, the Mandelbrot set, and more. Look in awe, then lay down Her vengeance on your local non-Kyoto Protocol-abiding corporation by joining your local Earth Liberation Front (ELF) chapter.

Thanks to those that stop by and check out this blog and sites in the community such as listed in the Occult section of the blogroll, notably Alchemical Braindamage, Corpus Mmothra, Channel Null, kylark, dunneIV, Father Jordan Stratford+, Gnostic Friends Network, The Huge Entity, LVX23 and madghoul from Key 23, Mind Hacks, Tim Boucher, Technoccult, and everyone else! Together we'll continue to explore the occult online and look forward to its exciting evolution in the course of the Age of Information.

18 December 2005

Take a look at what you are

Scott Ginsberg began wearing a nametag every day in college as an experiment, to see if it would make people friendlier. Now, 1,863 days later, he has learned some important lessons on building a brand. He shared five tips to make your brand approachable:

Tip #1. Do something cool
"In my years of wearing a nametag, people say, 'Scott, that's the coolest thing I ever heard.' They tell other people about it," Scott says. "When you have a product or company that's 'cool,' people can't keep it to themselves. Try to understand the "cool" things that you like, then look for the commonalities between them to discover your own brand of cool."

Tip # 2. Be "That Guy"
In Scott's first six months wearing a nametag, he learned that people didn't just call him by first name. He was always "That Guy with the Nametag" and it has become part of who he is -- his own personal brand.

People enjoy dealing with "That Guy" because he's memorable. What guy are you? Consider this:
  • Every time I [blank], it makes people stop, listen, and say "WOW!"

  • People always remember me for [blank].

  • I'm probably the only person you'll ever meet who will [blank].

Tip #3. Fans, not customers
Fans stick with you even if you do something bad. They'll go to the ends of the earth to find your product. And they don't need to be sold to.

"A customer is someone who comes to a store to buy a lamp and never comes back," Scott explains. "Fans crave experiences unlike any others." Think about how to give them the experiences they crave.

Tip #4. Own a word
Scott recently got a call from an editor at Cosmopolitan magazine who was writing about approachability. After searching on Amazon, Scott was the only author she found. "I own the word 'approachability,'" he says.

To discover the word you own, consider this:
  • If you looked up [blank] in the dictionary, you'd see a picture of my company.

  • If I was about to give a speech to 10,000 people and one of the audience members came backstage and asked what my speech was about, I'd probably say, [blank].

Tip #5. Market yourself daily
By wearing a nametag, Scott is marketing himself every day. And it's working: "I ran into a guy I went to high school with, and he said he was just reading about me. Where? In Ripley's Believe It or Not."

Scott's career as speaker and author took off thanks to a conversation he had with a guy on a bus about the nametag thing. The guy was the boyfriend of a reporter … and the rest is history.

More about Scott:
Hello, My name is BLOG
Book
More about Scott's quiz in Cosmo
Bio

via the Word of Mouth Marketing Association

17 December 2005

Tessellations of Seth Fisher

Reading the December/January issue of Exclaim!, I came across Seth Fisher, who's noted as being one of the past year's most important comic artists. Checking Fisher's site, I came across his unique work and a page of tessellations he's done, link.

13 December 2005

Further tessellation and spidron info

For anyone out there that found the origami tessellations and spidrons interesting from my November post can check out the further explorations of pertinent links over on dataisnature. I am often too busy to really go into as much detail as I'd like.

And peruse dataisnature, it's one I keep my eye on weekly.

Evolution of the alphabet

Click to watch this animation of the evolution of the alphabet!

11 December 2005

Le parkour

Le parkour (also called Parkour, PK) is a physical discipline of French origin, in which participants attempt to pass obstacles in a smooth and rapid manner.

Parkour is said to be L'art du Deplacement, or the Art of Displacement, consisting of uninterrupted forward motion over, under, around and through obstacles (both man-made and natural) in one's environment. Such movement may come in the form of running, jumping, climbing and other more complicated techniques. The goal of the practice of parkour is to be able to adapt one's movement to any given situation so that any obstacle can be overcome with the human body's abilities.

According to founder David Belle, the "spirit" of parkour is guided in part by the notions of "escape" and "reach"; that is, the idea of using physical agility and quick thinking to get out of difficult situations, and to be able to go anywhere that one desires. However, fluidity and beauty are also important considerations; for example, Sébastien Foucan speaks of being "fluid like water," a frequently used metaphor for the smooth passage of barriers through the use of parkour. Similarly, experienced traceur Jerome Ben Aoues explains in the documentary Jump London that:
The most important thing really is the harmony between you and the obstacle; the movement has to be elegant. … If you manage to pass over the fence elegantly - that's beautiful, rather than saying ‘I jumped the lot.’ What's the point in that?
To some people (particularly non-practitioners), parkour is an extreme sport, to others a discipline more comparable to martial arts. Still others see it as an art form akin to dance: a way to encapsulate human movement in its most beautiful form. Parkour is often connected with the idea of freedom, in the form of the ability to overcome aspects of one's surroundings that tend to confine - for example, railings, staircases, or walls. The practice of parkour requires considerable physical and mental dedication, and many adherents describe it as a "way of life."

Check out this clip of David Belle from Luc Besson's Banlieue 13.

To continue reading the above entry, check out Wikipedia, or do a video search online.

10 December 2005

Upcoming new Peter J. Carroll book

From Specularium, his website on the physics of three-dimensional time. I am looking forward to this!
After a decade of research a fourth book, probably a final magnum opus, begins to reveal itself, provisionally titled:

The Apophenion, - chaos magic, sex and death.

Provisional overview of contents:

Part 1, Apophis. Nothing 'is' true. Death. Destruction. Logos. Unravelling the illusions of being and self.

Part 2, Apophenia. Everything 'is' permitted. Sex. Creation. Mythos. Creating more effective illusions. The unconscious-superconscious equivalence.

Part 3, Liber AAA. Chaos Magic. Apophusis, Apophasis, and Apoptosis in General Metadynanics. How magic exploits the hidden structure of the quantum microcosm and the cosmological macrocosm. Ouroborous.

Inspired in part by the Eight Weeks, I've found my Muse, and I'm pregnant, and its exhausting. Gestation time at least a year, maybe two, but its coming.

Pete.

I like how a lot of people bitch and whine about Nothing is true not making much sense, though who said it was supposed to. Here I think Carroll sums it up proper:

Nothing is true. Everything is permitted.

Just think on it for a bit.

06 December 2005

Do you hate consumer culture?

If we all hate consumerism, how come we can’t stop shopping?

Angry about all that packaging? Irritated by all those commercials? Worried about the quality of the “mental environment”? Well, join the club. Anti-consumerism has become one of the most important cultural forces in millennial North American life, across every social class and demographic.

This might seem at odds with the economic facts of the 1990s — a decade that gave us the “extreme shopping” channel, the dot-com bubble, and an absurd orgy of indulgence in ever more luxurious consumer goods. But look at the non-fiction bestseller lists. For years they’ve been dominated by books that are deeply critical of consumerism: No Logo, Culture Jam, Luxury Fever and Fast Food Nation. You can now buy Adbusters at your neighbourhood music or clothing store. Two of the most popular and critically successful films in recent memory were Fight Club and American Beauty, which offer almost identical indictments of modern consumer society.

What can we conclude from all this? For one thing, the market obviously does an extremely good job at responding to consumer demand for anti-consumerist products and literature. But isn’t that a contradiction? Doesn’t it suggest that we are in the grip of some massive, society-wide, bipolar disorder? How can we all denounce consumerism, and yet still find ourselves living in a consumer society?

The answer is simple. What we see in films like American Beauty and Fight Club is not actually a critique of consumerism; it’s merely a restatement of the “critique of mass society” that has been around since the 1950s. The two are not the same. In fact, the critique of mass society has been one of the most powerful forces driving consumerism for more than 40 years.

That last sentence is worth reading again. The idea is so foreign, so completely the opposite of what we are used to being told, that many people simply can’t get their head around it. It is a position that Thomas Frank, editor of The Baffler, has been trying to communicate for years. Strangely, all the authors of anti-consumerism books have read Frank — most even cite him approvingly — and yet not one of them seems to get the point. So here is Frank’s claim, simply put: books like No Logo, magazines like Adbusters, and movies like American Beauty do not undermine consumerism; they reinforce it.

This isn’t because the authors, directors or editors are hypocrites. It’s because they’ve failed to understand the true nature of consumer society.

Continue reading, via THIS Magazine.

Disappeared in America

via Information Aesthetics
Taking a cue from an election speech, this Disappeared in America animation outlines the regions where mass detentions were carried out after 9/11. This map is built off a database that viewers can update.

05 December 2005

Calendar featuring erotic scenes from the Bible

My buddy Geoff passed this along to me this afternoon:—

A German Protestant youth group has put together a 2006 calendar illustrated with erotic scenes from the Bible. The 12 re-enacted passages feature a bare-breasted Delilah cutting Samson's hair and a nude Eve offering an apple. The Nuremberg-based group said they wanted to represent the Bible in a way that would entice young people.

http://www.bibelkalender.de/ or the English article on the BBC

Video game unlocks orgasm secrets

via canada.com
Lapis, the blue-hued main character of a prototype video game by Montréal's Heather Kelley, a designer with Ubisoft, wants to help women take a "magical pet adventure" to their "happy place."

The prototype teaches how to reach orgasm by simulating the affect of pleasurable sensation on the cartoon. Players tickle, touch, tap, and stroke Lapis using the touch screen of the Nintendo DS, a hand-held video game device. They can also talk, sing and blow on the bunny's fur using the device's built-in microphone.

Download the demo here.

Plush Cthulhu Slippers

via Boing Boing à la Wonderland
Based on H. P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu stories. The Cthulhu Plush Slippers are made of quality fabric and your feet will never be warmer than when they're tucked cozily inside a cute pair of demons. Link

03 December 2005

Golden Dawn Practitioners game card

Originally from Channel Null, but it made me giggle again today so I needed to post it! Who are these bozos? And what's stopping me from pushing them down the stairs?

“A rose by any other name”

What’s in a name? That which we call a Rose, by any other name would smell as sweet.

Shakespeare’s Juliet asked, “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other name would smell as sweet.” It’s obvious that Juliet never worked in a large, complex, political organization!

We need to understand that names, labels, and titles really do matter. They provide structure and clarity in most companies, a common language for investors and industry analysts and a mental framework for customers. I’ve seen terminology limit roles and responsibilities and carve up budgets. So despite its simplicity, a very important question is “How does your organization and/or culture define __________?”

for later reference, adapted from here: link

An Introduction to the fascinating patterns of Visual Math

Masonic Mural at California Grand Lodge, based on the Golden Proportion
Many thanks to chressie for pointing this out to me. What I absolutely adore about mathematical visualisation is that, like any symbolism, you can apply it to one's life, society, whatever. This is what the occult does, it's a poetry by which we can ellicit new meaning and contexts by which to live and experience the story. But because these visualisations are rooted in nature, the very fabric of how the universe operates, when you apply them to other aspects of one's subjective view really natural and orderly comforts arise, for me at least.

Link to patterns of Visual Math

Too many people forget that their point of view is just that, theirs, and that if they could remember to, daily, spend just a moment looking at the world from another angle, they'd be a helluva lot better off. Math lets you glimpse through the eyes of nature. Practice is good, and the more you try to apply symbols, such as these, to history, sociology, your own psychology, commerce, whatever, the more you exercise that ability to look at the universe with subtle, occult eyes. I have the utmost respect for those that are learned in thinking in math.

And ultimately, you work towards being able to truly see and relate everything back to One. One point, one existence. Outside of time. Outside of language. Just One.

Only a very few ever get to see the world as Nothing, No Thing, Ain Soph, and whatever lies beyond.

Learn to experience the relativity of symbols to every aspect of life, and your mind will grow. Just don't go the path of the late Vancouver magician, Frater Achad, and lose your grounding in your own here and now, your own personal monomyth.

EDIT — Forgot I had this tagged from before: Sacred Geometry Home Page, with some really cool copy to peruse. :-)

02 December 2005

Best. Toy. Ever.

Mark, Carmen, and Jeremy got me some toy figurines for my birthday this past week, one of which was a My Little Pony, and I just found a picture of my favourite online. The packaging is all in Japanese, some toy line called TinyKid's Creation. I found some more on the Japanese version of Amazon and there are more at the store where they found it, but none that matches the unbridled awesomeness that is this figurine.

It's a manga girl with huge tits, shocked to find an octopus embracing her groin. Or fucking her. Like I said, Best. Toy. Ever.

Origami tessellations

Check this link out for more incredibly beautiful and what appear to be complex tessellations, these fractal-like patterns. There are also many more origami links from the following:

www.origamitessellations.com

And this one dealing with spidrons (pictured above), described as "a planar figure consisting of two alternating sequences of isosceles triangles which, once it is folded along the edges, exhibits extraordinary spatial properties." Check them out:

www.szinhaz.hu/edan/SpidroNew/

01 December 2005

Self-injury

Not to glamorise this, but I've always found it just fucking fascinating that people "injure" themselves. I suppose relatively speaking this is self-injury, but then again as I've known and dated quite a few persons to have cut and burned their own bodies (to some frightening degrees, mind you), the traits always seem to be associated with the characteristics of the so-called Outsider as purported in Colin Wilson's fantabulous text, The Outsider. Creative, isolated in perspective, and very often of a high intelligence (whatever that means, but they are smart folk).

Not only does self-injury — we just call them "cutters" — have its own domain, self-injury.net, but someone has begun cataloguing celebrity cutters. The list includes the dark creative geniuses of Hollywood, music, and abroad, such as:
  • Fiona Apple

  • Drew Barrymore

  • Brody Dalle, The Distillers

  • Johnny Depp

  • Richey Edwards, Manic Street Preachers

  • Colin Farrell

  • Angelina Jolie

  • Courtney Love

  • Marilyn Manson

  • Shirley Manson, Garbage

  • Princess Diana

  • Christina Ricci

  • Amy Studt

  • Sid Vicious

  • Elizabeth Wurtzel

Back in high school my English teacher gave me shit for having burned what I thought were markings into my face, around my eye in particular. I used a heated knife to do it. For no other reason than aesthetic. But with my friends and loved ones over time, from the burning of spirals and other glyphs unto the skin to the massive cutting and pools of blood that were left behind, depending on the friend, it always seemed to be more exploratory of the carnal host. That we hurt ourselves to know that we can feel, and I know I used to have extensive conversations about this stuff with one friend in particular who said she did it to release, to feel, something inside, a deep swelling of something that bore no relativity to our objective world(s).

Which reminds me of this quote from Varieties of Religious Experiences, by William James:
Recent psychology … speaks of the threshold of man’s consciousness in general to indicate the amount of noise, pressure, or other outer stimulus which it takes to arouse his attention at all. One with a high threshold will doze through an amount of racket by which one with a low threshold would be immediately waked. … And so we might speak of a ‘pain threshold,’ a ‘fear threshold,’ a ‘misery threshold,’ and find it quickly overpassed by the consciousness of some individuals, but lying too high in others to be often reached by their consciousness. The sanguine and healthy minded habitually live on the sunny side of their misery line; the depressed and melancholy live beyond it, in darkness and apprehension.

Does it not appear as if one who lived habitually on one side of the pain threshold might need a different sort of religion from one who habitually lived on the other?

This may be one of the reasons I turned to the occult when I was a youth. It was never for image, but to find something. I've been led my whole life to find answers to questions I've never been able to ask, and am only now beginning to be able to structure. That's saying a lot after countless — countless — hours, high and sober, talking and debating and sharing with people like Kirsten and Tara and Jason D. and Jason B. and Harley, and many others over the years. I obviously didn't find the right answers in time for some, though it's also not my responsibility, but I'd like to be able to bring forth as much as I can on this short journey I've been granted.