Arcanorium CollegeCollege News and Views

Pete Carroll

Thursday, 14 January 2021 10:02

New Year 2021

Pandemic

Chinese bats now seem to have killed more Brits than the Luftwaffe, or indeed the annual toll of WW2 did. Nevertheless, we have a home-grown vaccine that may well sort this out by the summer here and in the entire world thereafter. I hope that we do not punish the government at the next election. This pandemic represents a disease of progress and civilisation – our fault for exploiting wild animals and encouraging mass travel around the globe. Authoritarian regimes have had much lower casualties, but freedom has a price, better Dead than Yellow or Kraut. The Labour opposition here has whined and bleated, failed to come up with policy alternatives, and grudgingly agreed to the government’s tactics. Let us thank all the gods we did not have Comrade Jeremy Corbyn in charge during this crisis.

Politics

Culture War or Class War?

Here in the UK, we have an irritating amount of overspill from the so-called ‘Culture Wars’ allegedly wracking the fabric of American society.

Wokeism, Anti-Colonialism, BLM, Cancelism, and Minority Sexuality advocacy seem to have coalesced into a single liberal virtue signalling package against which an equally polarised backlash has formed to promote White Supremacy, Anti-Globalisation, Nationalism, and Conspiracy theories.

What underlies this Polarisation? - The Economy.

For the last several decades the professional and managerial classes in the USA, and to some extent the UK, have screwed the lower middle and working classes through globalisation. The wages of the poorer in rich countries have stagnated or declined in real terms as manufacturing has become outsourced to the developing world or insourced to cheaper imported labour. Meanwhile the managerial and professional classes have profited from cheaper goods and services and capital invested overseas.

This becomes all too clear when you examine ‘The Elephant Graph’. -

https://www.ejiltalk.org/being-charged-by-an-elephant-a-story-of-globalization-and-inequality/

The rich in rich countries often opine that they have helped to uplift many parts of the developing world and that this would lead them to adopt western style values and democracy. The later has singularly failed to materialise. The rich in rich countries have merely succeeded in shifting wealth to themselves, and from the poor in their own countries to the rich in poor countries.

All the issues which have become polarised into the so called ‘culture wars’ revolve around the concerns of the poor in rich countries.

The American dream of a working-class family with their own home and car and with one parent as homemaker now seems a rarity or a forgotten fantasy for many. I has also become exceedingly difficult to achieve in the UK.

QAnon’s seemingly mad ideas about a conspiracy of ‘Satanic Paedophiles’ actually makes a certain amount of metaphorical sense if interpreted as a conspiracy of ‘Greedy Capitalists Denying Poor Children a Future’.

Yet for all sorts of historical reasons America can never admit that it has a Class War, so a Culture War stands in as a proxy for it. Socialism comes close to blasphemy in the land of the free, and in the land of the free, many choose to regard poverty as self-inflicted despite the glaring inequalities of opportunity.

The American democratic party, rather like the British Labour party, now seems dominated by Rich Liberals, and both ignore the lower orders whose mores and habits they despise.    

Liberalism sets great store in an offensive against the side effects of relative poverty rather than its cause. Thus, it campaigns for any imaginable minority grievance rather than address the underlying economic factors which give rise to them.

Many Americans voted for Trump in the hope that he would do something about the American response to Globalisation. He seemed a strange choice but nobody else from the American elite dared to put themselves to the task, and America elects only from what it considers its elite. Trump may or may not now disappear, but the underlying issue will not, particularly under the pretence that it remains a Culture War.

Do not expect a revolution. Revolutions the world over, only tend to succeed under middle-class leadership.

Many British voted for Brexit in the hope it would allow us to deal with globalisation on terms of our own choosing. Our Conservative government at last talks openly about levelling up the economies of our poorer areas and classes. I live in hope.

Esoterics

The main part of this blog consists of an extensive email interview that Mr Ian Blumberg-Enge requested I give. This took place over the last week, because of its substantial size I have placed it here: -

https://www.specularium.org/wizardry/item/308-interview-january-2021

Thursday, 14 January 2021 09:57

Interview January 2021

An email interview between Ian Blumberg-Enge (in bold type) and Peter J Carroll.

Awesome! Maybe we could start with your current project, an alternative theory to the big bang? Is it possible to give a basic description? What is wrong with or missing from the big bang? How did you get into this project?

Back in the 1990s a flurry of popular science books came out on the Big Bang theory. At the time I had been conducting a series of seminars and tours about Chaos Magic and founding an international chaos magic order – The IOT. Several participants suggested parallels between the idea of a big bang explosive beginning to the universe and the idea of a primal chaotic creativity underling the mind and the universe, and the ancient Greek idea of the universe arising from Chaos.

At an Austrian Castle we conducted a mass dreamwork scrying experiment following a ritual to send an entity back to the time of the big bang to have a look at it.

Strangely, most participants reported that the universe then looked broadly the same as it does now.

This sent me on a twenty-year quest to resolve the issue. I had a science degree but in Chemistry rather than Physics. Nevertheless, I plunged into the study of cosmology to discover in detail just why so many physicists supported the Big Bang theory. This quest took me through thousands of scientific papers and books and entailed a substantial upgrade to my maths skills.

What I found rather shocked me and goaded me to further efforts. The Big Bang theory had become concocted in defiance of scientific method; it began with an experimental assumption about the redshift of distant galaxies and all subsequent observations have become interpreted in terms of that assumption, no matter how awkward the fit. Later observations that seemed to contradict the initial assumption did not provoke a significant questioning of it, instead they became explained away by inventing vast imaginary cosmic phenomena like so-called dark matter and dark energy. In any other field of science, you could not get away with this, much less get Nobel Prizes for it.

I found it increasingly irritating to find so many cosmologists and popularisers asserting that ‘We KNOW that the universe is expanding’. I also found the Big Bang theory increasingly unsatisfactory in metaphysical terms for it implied a creation event and an eventual apocalypse which gave some comfort to those with a monotheist religious outlook. (One of the main initial architects of the theory - Georges Lemaitre, also had a career as a catholic priest).

After a great deal of struggle and with some assistance from rebel astronomers and mathematicians and invocations for inspiration from extra-terrestrial entities, (these may only exist in my imagination, I often try magic when I have exhausted the possibilities of common sense), a coherent alternative to the Big Bang theory emerged.

I will not go into the details here, the exposition takes an hour or more, but the Hypersphere Cosmology model does fit all the observational data we have to date yet without having to postulate imaginary and unobservable phlogiston like phenomena such as spacetime singularities, inflation fields, dark matter, or dark energy.

The essentials of the new model appear here https://www.specularium.org/hypersphere-cosmology

In short, in the Hypersphere model we have a universe finite but unbounded in both space and time. From the perspective of observers within it (such as us) it has a definite size and a temporal horizon, but we cannot get out of it or to the end of it, so it will appear to go on forever. The final piece of the model came together with a re-analysis of Perlmutter’s data. Conventionally this became interpreted as an accelerating expansion and which led to the idea of a mysterious dark energy driving it. The Hypersphere interpretation shows that the spacetime curvature of the entire cosmos distorts distances like a giant lens and that we see it in stereographic projection. This makes the universe look potentially infinite, but the hypersphere model shows that after a ‘mere’ thirteen billion light years journey you would start moving back towards where you set off from. Something analogous applies to time as well, but do not expect the universe to do exactly the same things each ‘time around’.

Anyway, having sorted that to my metaphysical, mathematical, and scientific satisfaction, I have now turned to the question of the quanta that seemingly underlie all the matter and energy in the cosmos. The current official model, Quantum Field Theory looks as much of an ad hoc mess as does the official Standard Big Bang Cosmological Model. This may take a while to say the least.

My motivation for these quests to see beyond the current official models has two roots. Firstly, I seek to find a natural physical explanation for magical phenomena. My books so far have detailed magical philosophy and practise – basically what to do to increase the probability of making magic work. As to precisely how it works, I would like to know. I suspect it involves something on the quantum level. Initially I began looking there but the question of the nature of time and space and the dynamics of the cosmos seemed to side-track me into cosmology. However, the hypersphere geometry that emerged from the cosmology now appears to have much to offer in explicating the quantum realm. As above so below.

Secondly, in the grand scheme of things, evolution’s gamble in experimenting with humans will only pay off long term if we manage to work out how to make starships and spread the terrestrial biota to other star systems. Contemporary official theories of physics say we cannot possibly do this. I would like to change that.

Nothing Has Ultimate Truth, Anything Remains Possible.  

Interroga Omnia – Question all things.

 

Was this mass dreamwork in Austria the first time you used magic for scientific ends, or do you not see a worthwhile reason for distinguishing the two at all?

I consider myself a Natural Philosopher of the old style like Newton, prepared to look at both science and magic. Scientific and magical thinking complement each other in my view.

 

Sending an entity back in time seems like a clever yet straight forward application of a magical technique for a scientific end, are there other magical techniques you like for scientific work?

I frequently invoke the goddess Apophenia for scientific inspiration. Her ontological status remains a matter of debate. Imaginary friend? Part of my own subconscious? Grecian style goddess with a mind the size of a planet? As a Chaoist I have a situational belief structure.

Are there current or past models, like orgone, that you like for quantum phenomena?

Many mutually contradictory schemes of esoteric bodily energy exist. They do however all have one thing in common – the projection of attention and intent into the body.

I find the Transactional Interpretation the most interesting model of quantum phenomena, it says that time goes in both directions simultaneously, and it appears to have considerable explanatory power in magic.

In order for your new cosmological model and your coming quantum one to help get us to the stars do they need to be adopted by mainstream science,

I keep requesting that the scientific community falsifies the Hypersphere Cosmology. So far nobody has. Hopefully, an insider or group of insiders will either show a mistake in it or run with it. Before we go to the stars, we need a good map.

…..and does the fact that you used magic to help formulate them hurt that goal?

Well. I made a successful commercial business without ever having a haircut or a suit. I think this persuaded my bankers, suppliers, and customers that I has sufficient confidence in my schemes. I hope that wearing my pointy hat openly will attract scientific attack and force the issue.

Like you said the big bang can be seen as a monotheistic interpretation, how much of that sort of thing is there in modern physics do you think?

In the west we inhabit a post-monotheist culture. Einstein famously refused to believe that god plays dice (quantum indeterminacy). The debate about causality vs a-causality rages to this day. Causality implies some form of initial cause, a-causality or retro-causality does not. The quest for a unified theory of all forces perhaps partly derives from a monotheist idea of unity.

And do magical experiments lend themselves more to either quantum or cosmic phenomena more? 

That all depends on the experiment. Some of us like to use ‘Aliens’ as sources of power and inspiration, some do this metaphorically, some invest deeper belief in them, cosmological theories may well have some influence on our choices about what to expect of ‘Aliens’.

I always recommend taking a ‘quantum’ view of results magic because it seems to work by probability modification rather than by direct causality. The quantum view leads to the principle of ‘enchant long and divine short’, and this seems good practical advice.

The natural philosopher comparison feels right on, but you seem to have a better sense of humour about your pointy hat than Newton did. Do you own a real point hat?

I currently have two black pointed hats, a specially made formal serious one over a foot high with an embroidered chaostar on it. I only use this when doing something important in full ritual/ceremonial magic. For everyday wear I have an ordinary black hat with the top pushed up to a point and the brim flattened under hot water. This makes a distinctive though not wildly ostentatious hat. Biologists have noticed that if all members of a species look virtually identical it usually indicates that the species lies under intense selection pressure. The same seems to apply to human professions – look at all those suits in politics and business. I prefer to present myself as mildly contemptuous of selection pressures.

Newton seemed a very dour and antisocial type, fanatically devoted to the quest of knowledge and ideas, he also developed his manual skills and built himself the first reflecting telescope. I perhaps have a little of that, but I do have a small social circle and a wife and family. Fortunately, my wife reads a lot, leaving me time for research.

Do you think the current state of academia and information technology makes your job easier than in Newtons day or harder?

Information technology makes it possible to instantly obtain a stupendous cornucopia of up to date and historical scientific thought and data. It also makes it easy to find people you will probably never meet face to face, to discuss ideas with. Electronic calculations can reduce data crunching to the work of a moment rather than weeks on paper.

On the downside, information technology does seem to lead to a scientific herd mentality where everyone in the official herd comes under pressure to accept the same theories and academics tend to become the policemen of the intellect. Academics within the fold take a risk with their careers by even acknowledging contributions from without. Some of the more dubious assertions of conventional theories tend to become defended with almost religious fervour.

The Transactional interpretation, with time moving in both directions, fits within the Hypersphere model?

The Transactional Interpretation remains an unfalsified minority view of what goes on at the quantum level. Basically, it says that interactions consist of closed loops of waves going both forwards and backwards in time. It provides a way of visualising what actually happens in the otherwise bizarre and inexplicable double slit experiment, the apparent wave/particle duality, and in the seemingly impossible but measurable phenomenon of quantum entanglement. I hope to show that all those events we commonly regard as ‘particles’ consist of spin-waves of varied dimensionality that often extend in some sense right around the entire hyperspherical universe.  

Does the Hypersphere model take a position on causality or imply some initial creative force other than refuting the big bang's constant expansion?

I seriously doubt that any big bang ever occurred. I suspect that the universe will appear broadly the same to any observer anywhere and any-when within it. The big bang theory does not tell us how the universe came into existence, it merely claims that a long time ago the whole thing occupied almost zero volume and had near infinite density and that our theories give us no clue as to how such a state arose.

Monotheist thinking suggests that Non-Existence somehow precedes or has a more fundamental reality than Existence. I do not buy that. Existence seems more fundamental to me. Something always exists and existence means continual change. Ultimately everything causes everything else across immense loops of closed space and time.  

Scientifically speaking does the task of creating quantum models prove more difficult than cosmic ones? you don't need a super collider or something? What about accessing the proper data for one vs the other?

As most data from astronomical and particle observatories has no military or economic value it tends to become made available quite quickly in order to win prestigious prizes.

If I could do two experiments, I would do these two as a priority: -

Do a re-run of a deep space probe mission with high-precision telemetry to rigorously test the Pioneer Anomaly again.

Test the hypothesis that the so-called Higgs Boson consists merely of a ZZ Di-boson resonance.

Are you having to learn new maths?

I suspect and hope that the secrets of the universe remain comprehensible in terms of fairly simple algebra and geometry and that where we have ended up with descriptions that use exceedingly baroque and abstract mathematics we have not yet penetrated to the fundamentals.

This has become a serious problem in quantum matters. Current standard Quantum Field Theory consists of a mass of abstract mathematical operations and concepts that can partially model some of what the quanta seem to do. However, these bits of mathematics do not really translate into algebra or words or into geometry or images. As the great quantum physicist Richard Feynman quipped - ‘Nobody understands quantum physics’.

Wouldn't any new quantum model have implications for computing and energy?

Perhaps. Most would admit that the current official theory remains incomplete, if we manage to complete it further, we may find some existing parts erroneous. Presently we have dozens of competing interpretations of what the strange data and the mathematics used to describe them actually mean, perhaps some breakthrough here will lead to new testable predictions and new technology.

Why go to space? environmental disaster, it looks cool out there, DNA coding?

Hypersphere Cosmology asserts that for us as a species the universe will effectively persist indefinitely, and that we could do so as well. Thus, we need to look after the environment of this planet for as long as possible until astronomical events render it uninhabitable, and well before that we need to work out how to make starships – this will require something beyond our current physics. Presently we have economic systems that depend on growth of both population and consumption. This planet cannot support even the current human population and its consumption in the medium term, let alone in the long term.

I shudder to think what mistakes humanity will make when it starts re-writing its own genetics. A planet full of seven-foot-tall beautiful immortal super athletes all with an IQ of 200 might have poorer survival prospects than a planet full of three-foot-high vegetarians of mixed and eccentric abilities.

 

How did you get into ceremonial magic?

For me it began as a discipline for carrying out results-based magic in a formal way so that I paid minute attention to what I did, and nothing got left out. Later when I did stuff on my own, I tended to simplify the procedures to what seemed essential for me. Later still when I started setting up groups for collective conjurations, I found the ritual structure useful for coordinating and synchronising everyone’s efforts. However, by then I had simplified a lot of the traditional rituals to emphasise the effective important bits.

Was chaos magic created out of a need for a better working model?

Yes indeed, a lot of the old systems remained full of unnecessary beliefs and faux historical mythology. Magic continually reinvents itself and then pretends to an ancient hidden knowledge. You only really need intent and imagination and a few techniques for putting the mind into an extremely excited or a very quiescent state. You can dress it up with any beliefs or symbols that appeal.

Do you think it was important that you created a working model for tuning and hacking your inner space before moving onto modelling the cosmos?

Magic did wonders for my imagination and for my arrogance. The practise of stilling the mind and the imagination has the peculiar effect of making it work much more powerfully afterwards. Identifying myself as a wizard somehow obliged and inspired me to attempt extraordinary things.

Are the theatrical aspects of ritual magic (Austrian castles and pointy hats) as important after decades of ceremonial work?

The high years of large magical orders and mass interest in hardcore occult activities seem to have passed for various cultural reasons. So much occultism now consists of individuals working alone and communicating mainly online. Nevertheless, I still keep my hand in with the local Druid Grove once a month, we still use robes, staffs, candles, and circles.

For some historical perspective when were those high years and what did they look like? how many people at a large ritual and how often was that stuff happening? you were traveling the world giving classes and workshops also?

For me, the peak years seemed to run from 1985-95. At the castle seminars we had about 40 participants mainly drawn from the professional classes at the annual event for about 5 years running. I went to the USA 3 times to give lectures in esoteric bookshops. We had some events in London and a dozen or so temples that met in various cities around the world.

Long term you could say that your dreamwork in that Austrian castle in the 90's sort of didnt culminate until you finished your cosmological model and its impact still hasn't been fully realized. Are there still spells from those high years working themselves out on us all?

Some spells take ages; thus, we should always try to ‘Enchant Long’. In my earliest book I put a spell to ‘Obtain the Necronomicon’, a quarter of a century later I obtained one somehow out of the aether or my subconscious or with extra-terrestrial assistance. It seems to do the trick.

Has anything been lost do you think in that shift away from communal magic or is this an evolution or maybe just a lull? I dont remember whose idea it was, but I think Wilson introduced me to the idea that it takes a generation for new information to integrate itself into a culture. I like to think that is what is currently happening to chaos magic and all the sort of open-source spiritual science from that era.

Often when I look at any modern book of magic today, I think well, we are nearly all Chaos Magicians now. Deep down I suspect that most neo-pagans (with perhaps a few American exceptions) believe the gods and goddesses exist as thought forms of our own creation and that in magical evocation you basically create ‘spirits’ as servitors, but they remain no less useful for that, in fact it makes them more useful and versatile.

Unfortunately, the internet gradually brought with it what I call ‘Internet-itis’ - a huge reduction in attention spans, a relentless need for continual novelty, and an increasing reluctance to put in sustained work. Plus, in an increasingly noisy medium the short shout has tended to replace proper debate and genuine exchange of ideas.

Wikipedia says Robert Anton Wilson invited you to teach at the maybe logic academy? what did you teach there, was it a physical location?

When Wilson got old and sick his friends opened an online academy that offered courses to raise money for his care. They invited me and quite a few others as tutors. I gave three or four courses of about eight weeks each, two in basic chaos magic and one on chaos magic in business. After it wound down, at the encouragement of participants I opened Arcanorium College online and carried on doing something similar for another near decade, until it began to suffer from internet-itis.

Did you know Wilson personally?

I spent two evenings with him at his place near LA when I did lectures over there. I found him very agreeable company and he had a mind like jet engine, voraciously sucking in ideas and mixing them with the fuel of his enthusiasm and blasting them out in accelerated form, though I often wondered if he lost track of them afterwards………

What did you study at university?

Officially mainly Chemistry with some Biology. However, I rapidly became bored with a chemistry that merely resumed what we had done in school but in excruciating detail, so I spent most of my time and energy studying esoteric and magical matters. In those days many of the core texts of western magic appeared in bookshops for the first time. I settled for a minimum pass at chemistry and an unofficial major in magic.

Wikipedia also says you taught in India and the Himalayas, what did you teach there? Did that experience influence your magic studies?

No, I spent many months studying English language works about Tibetan esoterics in the Tibetan Library at Dharamsala/McCleod Ganj. Despite the cultural and symbolic differences there seemed a great deal of overlap with western magical techniques. Tibetan magic derives from Bon Shamanism overlaid with Buddhist ideas with some input from Hindu thought.

Did magic bring anything to your parenting, and did you learn anything about magic raising kids?

I tried to encourage their imaginations and their ability to visualise. They both got degrees in biological sciences and one carried on and got a PhD, now they teach me a lot about nature and biology. I found it fascinating to watch their consciousnesses and personalities emerge, and how they chose their opinions. Neither of them really got into magic, it did not form part of their cultural milieu or peer group interests which seemed more centred on yoga and meditation and sports.

You say in liber null that white magic leans toward the acquisition of wisdom and a general feeling of faith in the universe, does that not include yoga and meditation? or what parts are missing?

Most forms of yoga and meditation do not include activities designed to make wishes about exterior things come true. However, India seemed overflowing with gurus, sadhus, and ‘holy’ men trying to make a living or a fortune out of peddling questionable spiritual services and practices. A lot of people on mystical and spiritual paths seem to acquire the habit of despising attempts to make things happen by magic and do not even try to make good things happen - basically because they fear they will fail and compromise their faith in their beliefs. Magic does not always work, it often fails, but to me that means just do a lot more of it. If it only works one time in five it still provides a powerful edge if used cunningly.

Do you think magic is for everyone? is this a science that should be taught to school children or is there always going to be a form of shaman in communities?

Well, we now attempt to teach some science to everyone in schools. Perhaps we could introduce elementary magic in disguise by teaching the usefulness of stilling the mind, visualising, and imagining desired intents, exploring the subconscious, developing personified forms of inspiration, and so on. Obviously at this stage in our culture we would have to call it something other than ‘elementary magic’.

Can you say a little bit about how your chaos magic in business class differed from your other work?

We looked at the whole process of setting up a business as a series of magical operations. Illumination to clarify motives and inspirations for the business ideas. Invocation to bring forth the personal qualities to make it happen. Divination to discover relevant information. Enchantment to increase the probability of desired events occurring. Evocation to bring forth staff and allies.  

What are your thoughts on Leary and Wilson's theories about the evolution of consciousness and chaos magic sort of being the think edge of that wedge?

The human mind seems the most complicated object we have so far detected in the universe although the entire internet, now approaches the same complexity and information storage capacity as a single human brain, (we just do not have the same memory recall, we have creativity and imagination instead - precisely because of this). Now the human mind has the astonishing capacity to supply some confirmation of almost any scheme we choose to project upon it. Thus, if you attempt to project a Freudian or Jungian or Kabbalistic or Behaviourist or Astrological or Evolutionary Biological or Pagan Polytheist or Monotheist/Dualist scheme on to it, it will provide appropriate feedback or observations that you can interpret within the chosen scheme. All psychology seems more or less arbitrary; but some nonsense proves more useful in some situations than others. I prefer ‘Situational Beliefs’.

Oregon, my home state, just legalized magic mushroom therapy. how do you feel about psychedelics?

I think they have a value in demonstrating what the mind can do, but the magician should then strive to achieve such states by meditation and imagination alone. I have seen too many magicians fall into the trap of using them as a substitute for magic.  

Do you think physical aliens have visited earth?

There seems no material evidence, but aliens with the knowledge and power to get here would almost certainly have the ability to remain completely invisible to us and a strong motivation to remain so. If they can move freely around the universe then we have nothing that they could want, except the opportunity to observe us undisturbed, out of curiosity.

What are your hopes for the future?

As a species we urgently need to find an alternative to economies based on debt, and growth in population and consumption. As I said before - This planet cannot even support current levels of human population and consumption in the medium term, let alone in the longer term. Profound or catastrophic changes to the whole human adventure seem inevitable within the lifetime of my children and grandchildren. I hope we take the least bad of the tough options ahead. In general terms we need to focus on quality rather than quantity.

Why is astrology not an ideal divination system?

It all depends on how you define astrology and how you define divination.

Mundane Astrology developed in the ancient world for the purposes of deciding the best times to do things like planting seeds, starting military campaigns, crowning monarchs, breeding, or slaughtering animals, and maybe navigation as well. Heck, we seem to have built the mighty Stonehenge primarily to calculate the exact date in a climate with deceptive weather. The Natal Astrology that developed in the late Hellenic world seems to have almost zero objective predictive power despite that health and life outcomes in temperate climes have a weak correlation to season of birth, but less so as we lead more pampered indoor lives.

On the other hand, the baroque Neo-Platonic inspired nonsense of natal astrology does have a value in Lateral thinking and Apophenic thinking and it can also offer a symbolic alphabet for the construction of spells and rituals. I might also add that it can prove useful in pulling the wool over people’s eyes, manipulating them, and extracting money from them.   

Any book recommendations from your current reading list or from your lifelong list of favourites?

I can of course heartily recommend my own six books which may well save the aspiring magician from ploughing through the vast number of classic source tomes from antiquity to Mathers, Spare, and Crowley from which I partly distilled them.

I can also recommend the following for their alternative perspectives on magic: -

My Years of Magical Thinking by Lionel Snell. This explores magical philosophy in depth.

The 7 Laws of Magical Thinking – How irrationality makes us healthy, happy, and sane, by Matthew Hutson. Written by a highly rational man.

Sorcery by J. Finley Hurley. An intriguing investigation into whether magic really works.

Placebo - The belief effect, by Dylan Evans. The astonishing effects of expectation.

Lost in the Cosmos - The last self-help book, By Walker Percy. Quirky and immensely though provoking.

Plus, for entertainment read anything and everything by Sir Terry Pratchett, one of the few novelists who wrote about magic from an insider’s perspective. I guess its okay to mention that now that he has sadly left us.

 

Sunday, 20 December 2020 22:19

Winter Solstice 2020

Winter Solstice 2020

Seasonal Greetings.

Astrology. For those who choose to invest belief in it, a rare conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter occurs at this Solstice. This does not necessarily presage the end of the world – fortunately the Chaobala of the Epoch attributes a Saturnine-Jupiterian current to Osiris - the embodiment of rebirth.

Physics. Herewith a seasonal gift to the world: -

https://www.specularium.org/hypersphere-cosmology

After many years of struggle the maths of Hypersphere Cosmology have achieved complete internal coherence and a precise match with observational data. The LCDM Big-Bang Theory will become formally discarded soon, and thank the gods for that, it brought some very distasteful metaphysics with it. Many thanks to all he terrestrial and extra-terrestrial intelligences who have assisted with this project, JD and Yog-Sothoth in particular.

The science media voice increasing doubts about the Big-Bang, the Editor’s Pick letter in the xmas edition of New Scientist begins ‘Time to abandon the big bang theory? Plus, the daft idea of so-called dark matter has just come under further attack from the ‘External Field Effect’ (try searching on that), Hypersphere Cosmology resumes this MOND type effect and identifies and quantifies its origin in Gödelian and Machian principles.

The mathematics off Hypersphere Cosmology condense to a few terse pages accompanied by about forty pages of explanation and metaphysical interpretation. These will appear eventually in the forthcoming Occultaris. In the meantime, the maths appears on this site ‘pour encourager les autres’.

The completion of that part of the Natural Philosophy project opens the way for a serious alternative to the mess of Quantum Field Theory. A gradually emerging model of Quantum Hyperspheres shows promise – in this, everything becomes the cause of itself in hyperspherical space and hyperspherical time. In the best traditions of natural philosophy this leads to an holistic reality in which the properties of anything depend on the whole of the rest of the universe, and many of the strange connections that Apophenia suggests have a reality.

Politics.

Britain seems close to finally liberating itself from the EU Synarchy.

The Eurocrats cannot possibly offer Britain anything less than punitive terms if it refuses to accept political interference, otherwise many other countries will try to regain their political independence and the whole rotten corrupt EU shambles will disintegrate.

Ever since the founding of the Common Market a clique of largely unelected synarchists has promoted a conspiracy to rule Europe through a vast non-democratic bureaucracy that controls every aspect of its citizens lives. It has done this by stealth, by coups, and by bluff.

When Britain conducted a referendum in 1975 on joining the Common Market, strange bedfellows united to oppose the idea. Tony Benn on the far left opined against a ‘Capitalist’s Europe’ and Enoch Powell on the far right said that it would lead to a ‘Progressive Loss of Sovereignty’. The ‘Yes’ campaign made much of the ‘nutters alliance’ opposing the Common Market, yet history has proved both Benn and Powell right. The Common Market mutated into a political project largely beyond democratic scrutiny and it developed the ingenious ruse of putting big business in charge of an ever-expanding regulatory culture that actively supresses competition from smaller businesses. Plus, it became heavily protectionist to shield European big business from outside competition.

Powell also raised controversial early objections to immigration. The burden of immigration falls almost entirely on the indigenous poor by depressing wages and causing housing shortages and increasing crime. The well off reap the benefits in terms of cheap labour and inflating property prices, and even the increased crime and declining social cohesion provides the well off with plenty of administrative opportunities.

Britain will undoubtedly suffer in the short term for a No-Political-Strings-Hard-Brexit but we must do this for the long term benefits: -

Freedom from EU control over our Agriculture and Fisheries which currently degrades the environments of both.

Freedom to control our own borders.

Freedom to decide by democratic means, our own laws.

Freedom to trade with the rest of the world on our own terms.

Freedom always costs. The price, however high, always proves worth paying in the end.

Thursday, 03 December 2020 20:01

Decblog2020

Esoteric Horticulture - Now in their eighth year at Chateaux Chaos, the Mandrakes have blossomed with exuberance for the festive season. Note that after producing an initial celebratory heptagonal flower with six stamens, Circe and her friends have exclusively reverted to the usual pentagonal symmetry.

Sculpture – With all the shops shut due to the pandemic, and with internet shopping failing to provide a satisfactory festive experience, crafting gifts seems like an agreeable alternative. Herewith an Earring Tree. Iron wires tied and epoxied together, coated in black milliput, afterwards drybrushed with green acrylic and mounted in an old green slate block, inspired by the highland Larch.

Politics – America seems to have a problem with its institution of Head of State. The Potus has too much power and the periodic process of replacement proves both expensive and disgraceful. Britain on the other hand has a severe problem with its economy. Perhaps Britain could offer America surplus parts of its royal family as a readymade constitutional monarchy? Obviously, the Americans will not want Prince Andrew now, but what about Prince Harry? He comes fully trained in all ceremonial, charitable, military, and diplomatic duties and has an American wife and an heir. How about 100bn U$ and free aircraft for our two new unaffordable aircraft carriers?  America could recoup the costs quickly with an ‘honours for paid taxes’ scheme in a new American Order of Knighthood.

Esoteric Physics Update – As part of the forthcoming Occultaris, a treatise on Natural Philosophy that unifies magic and science, it seems necessary to demolish the standard LCDM model of big-bang cosmology and replace it with a Hypersphere Cosmology which now exists in a fully quantitative form. It also seems necessary to replace the standard mode of Quantum Field Theory with a model based on Quantum Hyperspheres to fully unify the microcosm and the macrocosm.

Official QFT demands no less than 25 different fundamental fields pervading all of spacetime and 36 supposedly fundamental quanta, it seems massively baroque and ad hoc and riddled with the modern equivalents of epicycles and phlogiston.

In the emerging Quantum Hyperspheres model, spacetime itself (with a few extra dimensions) provides the basis for all fields, and all quanta consist of various centres of spin in up to 4 different planes which creates spinors. The basic bones of the model appear below. It treats quanta as less fundamental than the various configurations of spin that comprise them. It remains geometric and qualitative at this stage; I would welcome collaboration from specialist mathematical physicists to explore the quantitative aspects.

The underlying motivation here arises from a desire to model an entirely natural description of reality that also explains non-locality, entanglement, and superposition and a wealth of esoteric phenomena in terms of extra-dimensionality and temporal reversibility.

Tuesday, 10 November 2020 19:30

Novblog2020

Psychology, Oneirology

“One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.” – Nietzsche.

And Erik Hoel of Tufts University makes a strong argument for this in his recent paper on The Overfitted Brain Hypothesis: -

https://arxiv.org/pdf/2007.09560.pdf

A thorough study of this September 2020 paper will prove rewarding. Hoel discusses the various leading theories about why we dream and then he adds another astonishing one that perhaps supersedes them all.

Hoel draws heavily on what we have learned from trying to develop deep machine learning and machine intelligence, it seems that if you want a machine to develop a broad ability at problem solving then you need to feed it on Chaos. Or to put it more politely, Stochastic and Random inputs including Imaginary Data.

The theory goes that any information system can get a bit stuck and inhibited by the patterns it knows and expects and particularly by what it has recently learned, so it can benefit by shaking it all up and mixing it all about to provoke synthesis and integration.

Humans rarely dream ‘real’ memories, except in PTSD. Dreams usually consist of fantastical Apophenic mash ups of fragments of old memories and newer ones.

Hoel argues that the brain deliberately indulges in the hallucinations of dream to achieve this vital housekeeping function that any complex and adaptive information processing device will require. He devotes some of the paper to a discussion of dreams and creativity.

Hoel writes further in edition 3307, 2/11/20 of New Scientist and touches on the human need for unreality in general, our insatiable taste for myths and novels and entertainments about imaginary events. He suspects that we may need such inputs to prevent our minds ossifying around our often-humdrum repetitive life experiences.

This led me to wonder if some people value hallucinogens precisely because they mimic the random and hallucinatory state of dreaming, despite the potential survival costs of performing such activity whilst not safely asleep and immobile.

I have to say that I have got far more inspiration from dreaming and the liminal states of waking than I ever did from hallucinogens.   

Politics

Farewell Donald Trump, you brought a stimulating dose of chaos, excitement and controversy to American politics, the highest election turnout ever, and a focus of attention upon a lot of the elephants in the room, notably the failures of multiculturalism, political correctness, neo-liberalism and globalisation, the European reluctance to pay for its own defence, the need for renewables to make economic sense, the massive drug and people trafficking across the Mexican border, and the emerging broad spectrum neo-imperialism of China.

In choosing Biden the American people seem to have opted for Conservatism with a small ‘c’, - let us hope that does not mean more social and economic neo-liberalism as usual. Social neo-liberalism means policing thought and speech. Economic neo-liberalism means elites will take an ever-larger share of the pie.

Esoteric Horticulture

Circe the Mandrake has signalled approval of her new accommodation in the greenhouses of Chateaux Chaos by producing a flower with 7 petals and 6 stamens instead of the usual pentagonal symmetry of 5 and 5, as displayed by one of her smaller companions. Who said plants cannot communicate?

Quantum Hyperspheres

The microcosm chapters of The Occultaris continue to develop and now include a possible model of quantum gravity in qualitative form at least.

Sorcery

Finally, my thanks to the hundred or so around the planet who participated in the Samhain magical attack requested in the previous blog. The tide may have started to turn, but humanity must not squander victory by a return to its bad old ways. Mother Earth has so far admonished us mildly with climatic and biological responses, but if we really annoy her, she can swat our entire civilisation, and if necessary, our entire species, all too easily.

Thursday, 29 October 2020 19:31

Samhain 2020

Samhain 2020

Magical Attack

Now seems the time to throw in some Sorcery in support of all the mounting Scientific attacks on Covid 19, if some form of vaccine can work then we can perhaps avoid a grim Fimbulwinter.

Local Midnight 31st October, prepare for a coordinated conjuration: -

1) Dress a seasonal pumpkin with spikes suggestive of the coronavirus.

2) Lay out weapons of choice.

3) Gnosis – attain mental focus either by silencing the mind with meditative procedures or by exciting the mind to frenzy by exertions and wild emotions.

4) Physically wreck the symbolic image of the target without conscious deliberation.

5) Banish with deliberate laughter and thereafter avoid thinking too much about the conjuration.

Ouranian Barbaric or Enochian incantations, sigils, nudity, or robes and black pointy hats optional.

Personally, I shall use a Hammer of Thor, an original Tibetan Purba, and all three manifestations of the current Mk127 pocket wand.

Received from Japan

This curious and rather beautiful object, thoughtfully incorporating a personalised nameplate. It glows in the dark as well, a desktop or bedside wand/chaosphere always at the ready and easily accessible in pitch darkness.

Hyperspheres in the Microcosm

Lastly, as part of the ongoing Quantum Hypersphere Mechanics project. A contemplation of Mobius strips with half twists in them: -

Suggests that spinors may arise from a hyperspherical rotation, consider an object with axes x, y, z, and a fourth-dimension w, it can have 2 independent planes of rotation, say xy and wz.

An 1800 rotation about wz will invert the z axis about which the plane of xy rotates and a 3600 rotation will restore the orientation of the z axis, but this will entail a 7200 rotation of the observable xy plane! Such non-isoclinic (not equal angled) rotations of 4D spacetime quanta may explain a lot.

Wednesday, 21 October 2020 19:55

Octoblog

Octoblog

Pandemic lockdown has provided an opportunity for something of an Annus Mirabilis in metaphysical magical theory and The Occultaris* proceeds apace: -

                                       TIQM + HM + WSM + HC = OM!

Basically, an Apophenic addition of Cramer’s Transactional Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics, (for energy quanta), to Hypersphere Mechanics to Wolff’s Wave Structure of Matter, (for matter quanta), to Hypersphere Cosmology, (in eight-dimensional spacetime), yields an Omnality Matrix, partially entangling absolutely Everything, this seems metaphysically satisfying and has extensive explanatory and predictive power in both parts of Natural Philosophy – Science and Magic.

In response to questions about particle generation/flavour conservation in the previous blog: - The decay of higher generation quarks does not appear to conserve particle generation. However higher generation quarks only arise as entangled quark-antiquark pairs and a consideration of the decay products of both the quark and the antiquark reveals a perfect conservation of particle generation/flavour quantum number.

If generation remains conserved and baryons consist of uni-quarks then an 8-dimensional hyperspherical universe with quanta having 4 rotational degrees of freedom becomes an increasingly credible sub-quantum epistemology, and perhaps even an ontology and a metaphysic.

*Book to appear eventually…………….

Gardening and Board-Gaming/Building meanwhile continue to provide light relief from the mathematics.  

The Mandrakes at Chateaux Chaos sprouted early this year at the autumn equinox. Their roots had become too big for their individual pots so now they reside together in a single deep and huge one. Hopefully, they will all produce some apples this winter, not just Circe the big one.

Updates to Frontier Space War 2.

The scenarios have evolved through further playtesting: -

1) Discs placed below pieces indicate the number of units of that type, but the number of groups of any type of piece remains restricted by the number of pieces.

2) Command Vessels: - Tactical Attack/Defence use next dice up in size. Psi Attack/Defence best of three dice throws. This proves much simpler than adding numbers to dice throws.

3) Fortresses all use D12 Dodecahedrons A/D unless enhanced by a Command Vessel.

4) Strange Aliens. (partly inspired by the current plague)

Aliens have just two types of units, Hives and Wasps. Wasps can move from one system to another connected adjacent system each turn, and attack or defend with D10 Decahedrons. Hives cannot move and have no attack or defence capability and become destroyed by any attack. Hives can produce Wasps at a cost of 4 production units. Wasps can turn into Hives and vice-versa.  A newly created Hive cannot create Wasps in the same turn it became created, but a Hive that turns into a Wasp can move and attack in the rest of the turn.

Possible scenarios including Aliens.

1) Aliens use the Soviet Territories in place of the Soviets. They start with a Hive on Vostok.

2) An alien force of 5 Wasps can appear once at any Black Hole between any two other Faction’s turns, at the discretion of the Alien commander who then takes that turn for the rest of the conflict.

These Alien pieces consist of black Milliput over nuts and bolts, gone over with black felt tip marker to give them an eldritch organometallic sheen.

Brexit appears to proceed well. We should not negotiate. David Cameron and Teresa May both attempted to negotiate and they both failed and got sacked. We should simply say what we intend to do and do it, and that includes not imposing barriers or tariffs unless they do.

Saturday, 19 September 2020 10:18

Particle Physics Police

We invite the Particle Physics Police to falsify the following hypothesis before our Geometric Algebraists endeavour to take it any further.

It may form part of the forthcoming Occultaris, a Natural Philosophical investigation of the Macrocosm and the Microcosm.

Hypersphere Mechanics.

The conventional Standard Model of Particle Physics and the accompanying (Standard?) Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics plainly remain incomplete models of the Microcosm that do not penetrate to the bottom level of reality.

Hypersphere Mechanics models both particle Physics and Quantum Physics exclusively in terms of the same dynamical Spacetime Geometry that describes the Macrocosm in Hypersphere Cosmology.

Conventional Quantum Mechanics models the nuclear force as having a threefold symmetry whilst using twofold symmetries for particle spins, electromagnetic charges, and particle generations. Hypersphere Mechanics uses twofold symmetries throughout, and it equates all four particle properties to spinorial rotations of four planes in eight-dimensional spacetime.

Hypersphere Cosmology explains the Universe in terms of a Vorticitating Hypersphere consisting of curved 3D space in time and speculates that time may also have a hyperspherical geometry. 

A Hyperspherical universe finite but unbounded (closed) in both space and time, also implies curved time.

Two extra orthogonal time dimensions can explain quantum superposition and entanglement and the probabilistic behaviour of observed reality.

If the universe exists as a hypersphere in both space and time, then it has 8 dimensions.

A spacetime of n(even) dimensions has n/2 possible rotation planes. ((n-1)/2 for n(odd)).

(a 3D spatial ball has only one rotation plane, trying to rotate a rotating ball about another plane merely changes the rotation plane to one at a different angle as per the quaternion rules.)

A four-dimensional object such as a hypercube can have two independent rotation planes, the Clifford Double Rotations, such as wz and xy, or indeed any two rotation planes such as wx and yz.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rotations_in_4-dimensional_Euclidean_space

A ‘quantum of spacetime’ can rotate in 8 dimensions and it can have 4 independent rotation planes: -

In spacetime, a rotation of plane consisting of a spatial direction and the spatial curvature represents a direction of travel along the spatial direction. In spacetime, a rotation of plane consisting of a temporal direction and the temporal curvature represents a direction of travel along the temporal direction.

In hyperspherical Spacetime of w xy z space, and of a bc d time,

w denotes spatial curvature (as a magnitude component in the vector representation); z denotes particles direction of spatial travel

a denotes temporal curvature (as a magnitude component in the vector representation); d denotes particles direction of temporal travel.

If we regard the curvatures w and a as unobservable and the directions z and d as observer dependent, then we can denote the 4 spin planes as: - wz,  xy,  ad,  bc.

As spins have quantisation then perhaps, we can expect spins like +xy, -xy, +2xy, etc.

All planes rotate Spinorially - their rotation puts a twist in the surrounding space or time which untwists with a full 7200 rotation. Such twists create attractive or repulsive fields, and spacetime itself.

Particles and their component spins.

± denotes plus or minus

≠ denotes plus and minus, spins of the double component Bosons which cancel each other but which nevertheless carry energy.                          

 

                     Chiral Spin               Nuclear                     Electric                 Generation

                         ±xy                          ±ad                            ±bc                          ±wz

 

Dirac Spinor Fermions   +xy+wz   -xy+wz   +xy-wz   -xy-wz   Electrons and Quarks.

Weyl Spinor Majorana Fermions   -xy+wz   +xy-wz   Neutrinos only.

 

Fermions. All with chiral spin ±1xy. (±½) in conventional notation). All antiparticles have reversed spins.

                      Chiral Spin               Nuclear                   Electric                      Generation

Neutrino           -xy (-½)                  -                              -                             +1,2,3 wz (e, μ, τ)

Electron            ±xy (±½)                -                             -bc                          +1,2,3 wz (e, μ, τ)

Quark d type    ±xy (±½)              +ad                             -                          +1,2,3 wz (d, s, b)             

Quark u type    ±xy (±½)              +ad                          +bc                         +1,2,3 wz (u, c, t)         

Baryons            n&±xy ±½ etc       +ad                    0, +bc, +2bc                 +1,2,3 wz

Proton = u type quark. Neutron = d type quark.

 

Bosons. All with chiral spin of 0 or 2 (2=1 in conventional notation.)

                   Chiral Spin               Nuclear                   Electric                      Generation

Graviton        ≠xy (0)                    -                         -                                        wz

Gluon            ±2xy (±1)                ≠ad                                                               wz

Photon           ±2xy (±1)                  -                                                                wz

Z Boson         ±2xy (±1)                  -                           ≠ bc                               wz

W- Boson       -2xy (-1)                   -                           - bc                               wz

W+ Boson      +2xy (+1)                  -                          + bc                               wz

Mesons        n& ±2xy or ≠xy        ≠ad       0 or ≠bc, or ±bc, or ±2bc        various q/-q

All bosons have a ‘particle-antiparticle’ nature.

The Graviton thus consist of a zero-spin neutrino-antineutrino pair. The Z boson consists of an electron-antielectron pair with aligned chiral spins. The W bosons as electron-antineutrino or antineutron-neutrino configurations with aligned chiral spins. The component parts of Gluons, and Photons, do not exist independently. Mesons consist of various uni-quark baryon/anti-uni-quark anti-baryon pairs and come in many forms.

Bosons that do not displace wz time, remain free from the Pauli Exclusion principle, allowing them to form unlimited fluxes

Chiral spin and generational spin can interconvert with orbital angular momentum or velocity, and hence do not invariably conserve.

Nuclear Charge has a twofold symmetry not a threefold symmetry. It exists in ± form, not in a threefold colour/anti-colour form. Protons and Neutrons exist as fundamental uni-quark fermions. The Proton carries nuclear charge and electric charge, the neutron carries nuclear charge but no electric charge. At a stroke this removes the idea of fractional electric charges and all the complex confusion of QCD, (Quantum Chromodynamics). Mesons still consist of all the quark/anti-quark pairs as in conventional theory. Moreover, it makes everything consistent with the overall twofold symmetry implied by simple ± plane rotations. The +ad+wz or -ad-wz nature of quarks may represent another Weyl Spinor, or it may result from alignment of spatial and temporal directions of travel.

The whole array of short-lived Exotic Baryons and Baryon Resonances becomes explicable in this Baryon = Uni-Quark model: -

                   Chiral Spin               Nuclear                     Electric                 Generation

Baryons        n& ±xy                    +ad                    0, +bc, +2bc                 +1,2,3 wz

 

Mesons have an overall angular momentum composed of the intrinsic angular moment of the quark-antiquark pair, ±2xy (=±1) or ≠xy (=0) plus the quantised orbital angular momentum of the two quarks around each other (denoted above as n&) of ±1,2,3 etc, to yield integer spins.

Baryons as uni-quarks have an overall angular momentum composed of the intrinsic angular momentum of the quark ±xy (=±½) plus a quantised rotational non-spinorial momentum (denoted above as n&) of ±1,2,3 etc, to yield half integer spins of ± 1//2, 3/2, 5/2, etc. The resulting degrees of freedom allow many possible varieties of distinguishable baryon particle, although only the Proton exhibits long term stability.

Early measurements of spin 3/2 Baryons played a large part in the erroneous attribution of a threefold symmetry to the nuclear charge and a tri-quark nature to the Baryons.

In general, the greater the number of spins a particle possesses the greater the energy it carries and hence the more mass and the lower stability that it exhibits, although the spins do not summate in a simple way to yield a simple algorithm for predicting masses. Chiral Spins as high as 5/2 or 7/2 seem indicated for some exotic baryon resonances. Particle generations beyond 3 do not seem forbidden by anything except huge energy requirements.

In the Hadron realm of Baryons and Mesons, a sort of Nuclear Chaos seems to reign - a sufficient concentration of energy can probably produce any imaginable type of particle, but with a lifetime inversely proportional to its mass.

Quantum Chromodynamics, the theory that quarks come in three ‘colours’ and that anti-quarks come in three corresponding  anti-colours and that Baryons such as the Proton and Neutron consist of quark triplets, appears as an unnecessary complication that obstructs our understanding. It arose as a scheme for ordering the massively confusing array of Baryons and Mesons observed in high energy particle collisions, but such a model brings with it a whole slew of ad-hoc fixes. In the QCD model, quarks suffer from ‘quark-confinement’ which prevents them from ever appearing in single form, they also suffer from Asymptotic Freedom in which forces become weaker at short distances and stronger at long distances. Gluons have to come in eight different colour combinations to explain the forces inside atomic nuclei, and quarks have to subtend very complicated arrangements of virtual quarks and gluons around themselves to explain the enormous discrepancies between the theoretically predicted and the measured masses of various quark combinations. These ad-hoc fixes seem little better than the now discarded hypotheses of epicycles and phlogiston.

Hypersphere Mechanics models particles in terms of SNEG, all particles consist of ‘snegs’ in spacetime. (chiral Spin, Nuclear spin, Electric spin, Generational spin.)

The proton represents the simplest and only stable particle with all four spins, it has the SNEG signature ½ 111. The Neutron consists of ½ 101. Other unstable Baryons can have higher numbers in their signatures. Suitable choices of SNEG signatures can model all observed Baryons and Mesons and their decay products.

And on a lighter note the Lithonians now have a Fleet Carrier. Fortuitously a larger block of ceramic insulation material washed up on the shore of this lockdown hideaway. The Lithonians come from a metal poor planet and use a lot of stone in their starships and the detritus on this beach seems rather metal poor as well. Discarded vape accessories make up most of the metallic components of the vessels.

 

 

The voyage of the Leif Erickson and the Garuda.

I would like to contact the people we had an extraordinary adventure with, in India around 1979.

A group of us built two boats in North Goa, the Leif Erickson, and the Garuda, and sailed them south. The boatbuilding took four months, so we set off rather late in the season. Both boats were about 30 feet long and based on the hulks of old rotten dugout riverboats that we bought. We added freeboard planking, outriggers, rudders, masts and sails, and rowing benches and oars that we constructed ourselves having replaced the rotten parts of the hulls with local wood and caulked them with local materials that the native fishermen showed us how to make. Each boat also towed a small dugout canoe for shore visits.

Both boats set off southwards down the coast hoping to round the cape to Sri-Lanka, but we had set off rather late in the season for favourable weather. Nevertheless, we had a couple of good weeks sailing, occasionally pulling into incredibly remote fishing villages for water and supplies, to the astonishment of the inhabitants. The ocean seemed idyllic, we saw turtles and flying fish and swam in the phosphorescence at night, but then disasters struck:

The Garuda hit a rocky offshore island partway down the coast, the crew survived but the boat did not. The Leif Erikson continued and then ran into a typhoon in the night somewhere off the Malabar coast. After a titanic struggle against the typhoon the Leif Erickson limped into Cochin harbour with most of its rigging wrecked. An hilarious scene ensued when a motor launch from the Cochin Yachting Club came to inspect our craft, having heard that ‘a British yacht had arrived’. ‘That’s us’, we said. They took one disbelieving look at the bedraggled hippies in their ramshackle vessel and made a swift exit.  We swapped the remains of the boat for a few crates of beer. After a few days, the group dispersed on their travels and we have not seen them since.

About 20 people became involved in various part of the boatbuilding and sailing, we would like to contact any of them with a view to exchanging memories and photos and maybe writing a book about it all.

They say that everyone on the planet lies no more than seven links of acquaintance away from anyone else, so if you know any of these people please send them this article, or if not please forward it to someone who you think might know of them.

Herewith a list of those names we can remember: -

Leif Erickson Crew.

Pete Carroll, Christine Hutchinson, Simon Dunsford (British), Lars Jorgenson, fisherman, (Danish), Alfonso Lerna, racing driver, Alvaro Dominguez, chess master, (Spanish), Satayabodhi (Dutch guy, sannyasin name) Tony D’Souza (Anglo-Indian)

Garuda Crew.

‘Herr Robert’ as we called him, (German) he had worked on cruise liners, and a German couple. ‘Saco’ (Indonesian) and a skilled Chef. Ralph (Australian)

It would be great to hear from any of you 40 years on.

Regards, Pete and Chris Carroll, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   

 

I do not usually do verbal interviews online, I prefer the more leisurely medium of email interview as it gives more time to think, nevertheless I did become persuaded to do this one: -


https://thothermes.com/episodes/season-5-episode-4-the-birth-of-chaos-peter-j-carroll/

 

You can tell that I would have preferred more time as I keep saying, Well…. Erm….

 

Meanwhile a team of mathematicians and physicists crawl all over the Hypersphere Cosmology chapter of the Occultaris, eventually to appear in book form.

 

Friday, 17 July 2020 20:50

The Occultaris

Eight years have elapsed since my last book. Correspondents and publishers have started to ask if I have anything else in the pipeline. I most certainly do, although I wonder if the world can or will entertain its exceptionally challenging hypotheses. Herewith the provisional introduction and contents.

The Occultaris. Magic and Natural Philosophy.

By Stokastikos, Peter J Carroll.

Ch1. (Intro) Natural Philosophy, and the Occluded Universe.

Natural Philosophy used to mean the investigation of the natural universe and all its secrets by any means possible. It used to include anything natural that we could observe from mechanical, celestial, biological, medical, to even apparently ‘occult’ phenomena.

The great quest of Natural Philosophy lasted from classical antiquity until modern times and its remit included the study of all things, although it tended to avoid the pitfalls of applying reason to Theology and Religious ideas.

Then beginning in the early modern period, Natural Science began to assert itself and ended up by just calling itself Science from the latter part of the 19th century onwards.

What distinguishes Science from Natural Philosophy?

 “All Science is either Physics or Stamp Collecting.” -  Ernest Rutherford.

With this bold statement one of history’s greatest scientists asserted that the scientific understanding of anything depends on developing an explanatory mechanism that we can do some maths and measurement with, and check against experiment or observation.

Chairs of Natural Philosophy still exist at some venerable old universities and today Physics Professors usually occupy them.

Despite doing a great deal of Natural Philosophy, including speculative metaphysics and alchemy on the side, Isaac Newton managed to put optics, and terrestrial and celestial mechanics into the fold of (Natural) Science and then much else followed and The Enlightenment blossomed. Eventually even the study of living organisms grew from the mere phenomenology of Natural History into the Science of Biology with the discoveries of Evolution, Biochemistry, and Genetics.

These developments tended to leave Natural Philosophy with all the phenomena, ideas, and questions that we could not develop mechanistic explanations or descriptive mathematics for, often because we could not concisely define or measure them. Thus metaphysics, consciousness, teleology, essentialism, and subjective experiences tended to remain there largely ignored or dismissed by Science.

Enlightenment thinkers dismissed Alchemy and Astrology, probably quite rightly, as proto sciences that did not work. Religious ideas and practices became viewed as having social and psychological functions only, with nothing useful to tell about the Natural Universe on the basis that nothing Supernatural exists. Anything that really exists falls into the category of Natural, no matter how astonishing or hidden, or improbable it may seem.   

Magical ideas proved particularly resistant to mathematical quantification and description by testable mechanisms. Magic thus tended to become regarded as an Unnatural Philosophy concerned with phenomena that do not exist because we cannot readily measure them or easily perform repeatable experiments on them.

However, the far reaches of Physics in the Cosmological and Quantum domains do not yet conform to Rutherford’s ideals. Both fields remain at the stamp collecting phase, we have collected masses of observations, but we have no convincing and testable theories of mechanism, we just have a series of conflicting and often mutually contradictory ad hoc explanatory schemes. Cosmologists present extreme speculations as established facts. As Landau quipped “Cosmologists are often in error but seldom in doubt.”

 Quantum physicists argue constantly about the nature of the underlying reality or whether an underlying reality even exists or even has a nature that we can perceive.

Magic suffers from its own problems; in antiquity, magical theorists tended to borrow heavily from Religious ideas for a metaphysic and a vocabulary to describe their ideas and practices. Today, analogies to science often become employed. As Ramsey Dukes observes; Pseudoscience has become the language of choice for modern magical thinking. ‘Quantum’ has replaced ‘Astral’ in the magical lexicon. Yet that does not seem entirely inappropriate because as the great quantum physicist Richard Feynman asserted, “Nobody understands quantum physics” either.

This book aims to advance the cause of Natural Philosophy, the great quest to understand the secrets of the Natural Universe, by combining insights from the Unnatural Philosophy of Magic with insights from the increasingly Unnatural Philosophies of Cosmological and Quantum Physics.

In the cause of rendering all three of these disciplines less Unnatural and more consistent with each other, this book will advance many radical proposals and unusual hypotheses with supporting evidence, mathematics, and some proposals for experiments and observations.

Two magical experiments performed within the last thirty years gave very strange results and initiated the lines of enquiry that led to this book. Over the course of a career one becomes accustomed to Enchantments (making things happen by magic) going awry, sometimes solid objects in the vicinity shatter spontaneously, or teleport unbidden, sometimes unwanted metrological or seismic events have occurred, but these two experiments relate to Divination (finding information by magic).

In one of the two experiments a group of about forty magicians gathered in an Austrian castle and after a week of varied rituals and preparations set out to scry the Big-Bang event in a coordinated mass dreaming experiment. At the time, the so called Big-Bang had very much captured the popular imagination and become the officially sanctioned scientific answer. Many paperback books and documentaries had appeared on the subject and some of the Chaos Magic practitioners present had even gone so far as to identify Chaos Magic as ‘Big-Bang mysticism’. Despite expectations, all those who reported a result reported that the universe of 13 odd billion years ago looked much as it does now on the large scale. This provoked a quarter century quest to understand why almost all Cosmologists thought otherwise and whether they might have misinterpreted their observations, and whether a better interpretation exists.

Magicians have always made maps of the cosmos to guide them in their endeavours. For a long while they remained content with the solar system of the sun and most of its surrounding planets, and kabalistic schemes which derive from or relate to that, with maybe a nod to the surrounding celestial sphere. The magician Giordano Bruno went to the stake in 1600AD partly for asserting that other stars had planets orbiting them and that those planets carried other life forms.

In the other experiment conducted in the West of England, a group attempted to scry the results of horse races using a modified Ganzfeld procedure. Experimenters would first set up an array of unusual or surprising objects unknown to the test subjects. These objects would all bear numbers that corresponded to the race numbers of horses due to participate in a specific race in the near future. The test subjects would then enter a sensory deprived Ganzfeld state with opalescent lenses placed over their eyes and soft light shone into them, and with white noise played into their ears by headphones. Test subjects strove to achieve a vision of whatever object an experimenter would dramatically present to them after the race, the object chosen would correspond to the winning horse. The test subjects had no clues about what such objects might consist of or what races they related to.

Fortunately, we wasted no money on betting because it rapidly became apparent that test subjects frequently achieved false positives. They managed to scry unknown objects in the array, but these often did not correspond to the winning horses.

These results raised profound issues of indeterminacy, psychism, and the nature of time which led to several decades of research into the properties of the quanta which supposedly underlie the whole of natural reality.

Magicians have always made maps or models of how natural reality works. Early ideas about the Platonic essences of things and elemental classifications of phenomena as relating to earth, air, fire, and water gave way to models based on the rays and emanations and the luminiferous aether of pre relativistic physics.

If we have almost got to the underlying fundamentals of Nature with our investigations of the quantum realm, then perhaps we can attempt the final leap which will necessarily include accounting for magical phenomena in rigorous rather than pseudo-scientific terms.

The final leap almost certainly implies that we abandon two long held popular ‘privative’ concepts. A privative concept means an idea defined by the absence of something. Thus ‘Death’ does not consist of anything except the absence of life (except perhaps in Discworld). We commonly regard ‘Space’ as merely the absence of anything between separated objects, and ‘Time’ as merely the intervals between events.

When Newton proposed the concept of gravity, the idea of action at a distance without physical contact remained problematical to many including Newton himself. The later addition of the idea of a ‘gravitational field’ merely buried the problem until Einstein realised that what we call gravity means curved spacetime. As Wheeler later neatly summarised it, “Spacetime tells matter how to move; matter tells spacetime how to curve.”

In Einstein’s General and Special Relativity, space and time do not exist separately but always in the combined form of Spacetime. Moreover, spacetime has a definite geometry, structure, and properties, it can become stretched or compressed or curved or stressed by the presence of mass and energy. These principles underlie both the conventional Big Bang Cosmology and its alternative - the Hypersphere Cosmology that chapter 2 will explain.

In some approaches to quantum fundamentals, the mass and energy of the quanta themselves consist of geometric distortions in the fabric of spacetime. Chapter 4 will explore the idea that the existence and all the properties and behaviours of fundamental particles may arise from the geometry of spacetime if it has just two more natural dimensions than commonly realised.

Magical theories also require some sort of a medium for effects which extend across space and time. Traditional ideas about ‘spiritual forces’ or astral planes or ethers have never proved particularly useful or satisfactory and the more modern idea of ‘magical energy’ implies little more than some substance that sometimes does what someone wants it to.

This book will attempt to show that a (curved) six-dimensional spacetime could account for the structure and behaviour of the entire macrocosmic universe, the existence and properties of all fundamental particles of the microcosm and their quantum behaviours of superposition,  entanglement, and apparent indeterminacy, in addition to accounting for the probabilistic nature of enchantment and divination in magic.

Our most astute futurologist provokes us with the thought that the quest of Natural Philosophy may lead us to dark places: -

"The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the deadly light into the peace and safety of a new dark age."

The Call of Cthulhu --- H.P. Lovecraft - 1927

Yet only a Promethean response to the Indifferentism and Hostility of the Cosmos towards our randomly evolved species seems to offer it any long-term chance of survival. To this end we must attempt to correlate the contents of our minds and voyage far.

 

Ch2. (Physics) The Macrocosm, Hypersphere Cosmology.

Ch3. (Magic) The Occult Universe.

Ch4. (Physics) The Microcosm, Hypersphere Mechanics, Reversible and Transverse Time.

Ch5. (Magic) Practical Metaphysics.

Ch6. (Psychology) The Anthrocosm.

Ch7. (Magic) The Human Condition.

Ch8. (Outro) A Life.

And now for something completely different - Circe’s Children.

It all began with seed provided by the Greek wizard Xarisal. After seven years slow growth in the chilly British climate, Circe, the largest of the three Mandrakes (Mandragora Autumnalis) at Chateaux Chaos, has produced a mandrake apple, a seed pod. I shall offer some of her children for adoption at the next Druidical Eisteddfod with a view to their widespread reintroduction to Southwest England and Wales over the next century.

Lastly, another addition to the lockdown sci-fi creations, a major upgrade to the Frontier Space War game system with multiplayer and solitaire options and multiple backstory possibilities including neo-modern political and culture war, Alien encounter, and a Dune-style neo-feudal conflict. See below in the games section.

Page 8 of 20
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