“I’ve been patient, I’ve been good.
Tried to keep my hands on the table.
It’s gettin’ hard this holdin’ back.
If you know what I mean.” – Olivia Newton John
I may write a how-to book on weaponizing the Bible someday. Hint: it’s about selectivity.
BIBLE?! I know, this is a touchy subject in conspiracy/occult circles. We’ve encountered our fair share of Bible thumpers who connect everything back to their bias – *cough* reality tunnels *cough*. But what they’re right about is that Christianity is too big to ignore. Us weirdos would do well to carefully consider the Genesis narrative.
Arguably, this society in which we live has been shaped by no greater force than the mytheme contained in this ever so looming of stories. If you live in North America or Europe, maybe Australia and you haven’t read Genesis chapter 3 yet, go here now and read it, this blog post will make more sense (probably).
An often misquote of Voltaire’s goes as follows: “To determine the true rulers of any society, all you must do is ask yourself this question: Who is it that I am not permitted to criticize?” It is not a Voltaire quote actually but it’s still a very reliable piece of advice. Just change “rulers” for whatever forces ail you and you got yourself a usable radar warning system, practical for everyday life. Insert word of warning regarding dual-edged swords here: _____________.
What’s cool about turning ideas into tools is their versatile applicability. Now you can aim your bullshit detector at ideologies. Within the “Original Sin” narrative, the YHVH God’s boundaries are not to be crossed – He says “thou shalt not”, like, a shit-ton of times. I’d love to say I think this is a big cosmic tease. “Tut, tut, only when I say so. You’ve been a bad boy!” But there is sadly no sexiness to be found here. Unless you are brave enough to put some in there (my twitter handle is at the bottom of this article *winky face emoji*). In our society, until very recently, we were not to question God’s goodness. Thankfully we’re mostly over that. But we still live in a “thou shalt not” culture though. God has new secret names and and a litany of unspoken new commandments.
It’s even worse now. I can barely decide what I’m supposed to rebel against from the overwhelming amount of options. But there is no escaping the totalitarian mouthfeel of society. The picture is bleak but hope is found where the fearful do not tolerate dissent. A bee does not present a challenge to your power. But a swarm of bees does. You fear the bee only for it’s potential swarm-ness. Note the consequence, the word of warning that God gives to his Son: “He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” There is something about godhood that makes you want to not share the wealth. What is that? I guess this is why the first domino is defended so aggressively. In the western cultural myth-consciousness, Satan* nudges the first domino.
His pivotal contribution in this important myth is to ask a doubt-sowing question. “Is it really so?”, you get to answer. The Christians vilified this act, the greeks deified it. Both mythified it. Historically, there does indeed always seem a necessity to address the ubiquitous nature of doubt. I don’t know about you but my nether regions indicate this is a far sexier approach to life. All that unresolved tension? *bites lower lip*.
“I’m sure you’ll understand my point of view.
We know each other mentally.
You gotta know that you’re bringin’ out.
The animal in me.”
You see the real sin wasn’t biting into the juicy fruit and delecting in the moist deliciousness within. That was merely the explicit taboo, the decoy rule to distract from the real taboo. No, the implied sin was to question God. The concept of taboo-breaking as a tool for enlightenment is not uncommon. It just gets called different things. So then, Satan occupies the position of sinful doubt in the Judeo-Christian paradigm. To westerners**, doubt is the devil! In general we are obsessed with certainty. We demand proof. Politicians who don’t profess having all the solutions will not get elected. I don’t think Trump has ever said “I don’t know”. We just fucking love absolutes, don’t we? Somewhere deep down we still yearn for God’s stern daddy-ness. But the devil dares point out the chink in official reality. The message here is that we may actually not know. I think that’s what we’re all here for in our own way. Grimerica as a hedonistic rave. We’re celebrating the crumbling of sanctioned thought, our liberated naked minds writhing up against one another revelling in incertitude.
Note that doubt has no fixed moral position other than an adversarial one. Certainty transcends duality, for without doubt singularity is achieved. All is homogenized, United in the worship of Do-As-I-Say-And-Think-As-I-Think. It is doubt which generates the seemingly paradoxical experience of duality. Multiplicity is fueled only by doubt. Doubt may as well be a synonym for division. Chaos magic thrives on this. “Nothing/everything is true, everything is permitted”. Or as Austin Osman Spare so bluntly put it: “Does not matter, need not be.” Doubt has no ideological preference. Doubt indiscriminately haunts any who dare choose to think. It simply opposes and opens.
If you assume memes to be Arbitrary Units of sentience and follow that thought down the rabbit hole, you’ll begin to notice how ideologies are essentially constructs designed to fend off variations of the memetic arch-virus of doubt. All ideologies are plagued by doubt and must constantly create new memetic anti-bodies to fend it off. Or, in the case of cults, cut off as much contact to outside ideas in an effort to prevent infection. Enter cognitive dissonance.
Sorry to bear the good news, doubt is built-in. We are born into an uncertain world. Or as the christians would say: we are born in sin and “the whole world lieth in wickedness”. Indeed the devil dwells within. People leave cults and change religion or become atheists. And even those cocky-as-fuck materialists despite having consensus on their side must contend with doubt or become an embarrassment to themselves.
Reality modelling equals reality truncation. How much deflation do I want in order to hit my favoured results target?
I move then that all ideologies/belief systems , once you get past the different names and flavours are invocations of doubt. Same goes for all scientific experiments (as if there’s a difference). They are fundamentally engines for the manufacture of doubt. Any hypothesis or conclusion is accompanied by it’s opposing view (this was explored in Vol. 1 Issue 1). Sure, it’s all wrapped up in a “pursuit of truth” cloak – remember the anti-bodies? But we’re all inescapably satanic in the end. Whirling certainty-annihilating vortices.
By its very nature, ignorance does not know its bounds.
“I’m saying all the things that I know you’ll like.
Making good conversation.
I gotta handle you just right.
You know what I mean.”
If it sounds to you like I’m advocating giving up on the Pursuit Of Truth (POT), you’re aim is good but the target moves. I have not abandoned the pursuit but I have surrendered any illusion of finding. The POT is a tool for self-betterment. Another way of challenging myself to be nicer to others. The POT reminds me I’m still in pursuit with no catch to show for it. So maybe I should not get on that horse, as high and mighty as it looks. Conversely, I don’t want to be one of those guys stuck in a state of permanent fascination. Reality is a multi-faceted gem, it’s easy to get lost in the shiny-ness. So I feel compelled to adopt beliefs to fuel myself from one phase of life to another. A landing pad between forays into doubt. Realizing it’s all bull shit will not stop me from looking into things. You know, just in case it isn’t all bull shit. But this implies I’m constantly burning my beliefs. Well, I’m up for nothing if not a belief burning party. The sweaty kind under the moonlight. Invite me!
I have no truth to truck but tools to trade. I’ll show you mine if you show me yours.
Terence McKenna encapsulated a lot of this amusingly in the following quote: “My technique is don’t believe anything. If you believe in something, you are automatically precluded from believing its opposite”. That sounds like a belief I’d enjoy burning.
“I took you to an intimate restaurant.
Then to a suggestive movie.
There’s nothing left to talk about.
Unless it’s horizontally.”
I personally see no way past doubt except through death. Perhaps beyond there is certainty. So obviously in my day-to-day life, I have to find a way to integrate doubt. Otherwise I remain paralyzed by the overwhelming infinitude of possibility. As blissfully terrifying as that experience is, I still need to go to work, write a blog post, cook dinner. And I’d like to enjoy a board game with friends without the crippling existential tension thank you very much! I mean who doesn’t love sexual tension? But at some point you’ll go crazy if you never get to settle on anything. Drawing conclusions may be a failed endeavour but damn does it feel good! Plus, once you’ve settled into a belief system and you’re all comfy and groggy, that just means you get to do the nasty all over again.
So live or die I’m gonna try is what I’m saying. I’m not prepared to do nothing and wait for death on a gamble that it is a transcendent experience. Even if that’s a good gamble. Instead, I’m pussy-chasing reality. That’s more the kind of life I want. Wanna be each other’s wing-man?
“Let’s get animal, animal.
I wanna get animal.
Let’s get into animal.
Let’s get animal, animal.
Find me on twitter: @ulyssesnewcomb
Let me hear your body talk.”