[Flashback] A Parliament of Vultures

I wrote this on March 3, 2014. I don’t want to throw it out and there isn’t much I want to change except to clear out some verbiage, so I’m posting it as a memory, a bit of a snapshot into a moment of time. It is taking place right on the cusp of one the turning points in the blog, from Phase II to Phase III.

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Yesterday, my partner and I took a nice long walk through our little town. It was a beautiful day, made more precious by imminent cold weather. As we came to the end of our walk at a stretch of revitalized storefronts, black vultures started taking off from just behind the building.

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Addendum to Rethinking Astrological Priority

A recent post on the Blogos posed an alternative answer to what I was thinking about and it’s good, so I want to address how I diverge from it.

To come full circle one reading of the King sections of the SY, in response and addition to Io, is that it is directly referring to this ”cellular consciousness”esque approach to the SY, the Teli (Bola/Dragon) in the Universe are the genes in the nucleus (the king on his throne), the cycle of the year refers to the cell-cycle and therefore events in the cytoplasm (the king in his province) and finally the heart in the soul refers to how the cells interact/differentiate to form a realised body, the culmination of the genotype as the phenotype. The letters are quite literally a force of anti-time since everyone of us can trace them within us to the dawn of life itself.

I would talk about the genetic model a little differently. I would argue that the genes are the teli in the soul, the cell-cycle the year in the soul, and the phenotype the soul realizing itself as the soul. It is an important distinction, because the teli in the soul is still the teli of a king in the battlefield, which is why it is more susceptible to mutation and damage. The unfurling of evolution is the story of souls on the battlefield, but it is also the memory of those souls, the trace of their time, and their rebirth through new souls.

And I would probably suggest that the genetic material isn’t quite the soul itself, but the structure upon which the soul depends to articulate and develop itself in time, the king on his horse, if you will. I suspect part of what is going on in the golem working is the realization of that structure artificially, the construction of a temporary soul vessel for the continued to development of a soul, very possibly with the hope of retransmitting that soul back across the boundary of life and death where it will create subtle, rippling, effects in the soul of the teli.

(Which isn’t me disagreeing with Blogos about the golem; it’s more of a “and this too.”)

Meanwhile, the teli in the heavens proceeds more slowly its own year, develops its soul more slowly, but drawing up the souls fashioned in the battlefield to enrich and complicate itself. Which is why there are difficulties crossing certain astral boundaries, why there are guardians in play, because the soul of the teli seals itself off from the rapid time of the soul of the battlefield as much as possible.

So, we have three time scales (soul time, time-time, teli-time), joined and navigable by the letters which adjoin what I tend to think of as eternity, but anti-time is definitely a good word for it.

Rethinking Astrological Priority in the Sefer Yetzirah

I’ve been going through the thirty-one drafts that I had accumulated for this blog. I went through them ruthlessly and was left with nine posts that I can’t quite let go. They were composed at various points over the last few years, some reference discussions on blogs that don’t exist, and they are united in not quite fitting in with whatever I was working on at the time, oftentimes picking up a thread from an earlier post that I had left behind.

I want to shut this blog down cleanly, so before I get to the summation I am going to clear them out. That means some rewriting and, so far, that process has already resulted in one of those posts being binned, happily. Others of the nine will surely follow it into the bin, but I will probably end up posting at least a few of them. Those that do will be posted because (1) I like them, flaws and all, (2) they might be useful to someone else thinking about these things, even if only to disagree with, and (3) they are linked to some discussion that has gone on here, even if it is a very old discussion.

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Periodizing This Blog

Version 1.0

There are a few major periods of work on this blog, which I tend to think of broad trajectories or arcs of effort. Across each of those arcs, I am thinking my way toward something which, once I reach, sets me free to think toward something else. Themes and texts cross-link those arcs, making them fairly repetitive, hopefully in a good way, with each arc developing what is a minor chord in another arc. There is also a perspective, a disposition, that drives more than a little of this work, but I don’t want to talk about that here; that will take up a good bit of what will define closing time. Continue reading “Periodizing This Blog”

Hazy shade of winter

Taking a tally of how I have changed since I began this blog is interesting, almost as interesting as how much the internet itself has changed around it. When I first started this blog, I had an honest-to-goodness blogroll. I let that drop by the wayside as I realized, looking at stats, no one really made use of it. But thinking back to some of the links I can recall being there? Change, change, change.

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This Is Not A Story

Story’s have beginnings and endings. Even those stories that end leaving us with a sense of messiness and incompleteness, or that open in a disorienting en media res, they have a beginning and end. The sense that they continue, that they extend indefinitely beyond themselves on their own terms is a narrative illusion, trompe l’oeil, but for our sense of time.

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[NB] Thoughts while Crossing the Great River

A powerful urge last night just to gather together all of this and take a picture, put in front of myself the trajectory of this long trajectory of writing I have been involved with. It looks a little mad, doesn’t it?

A number of notebooks of varying size and quality arrayed on a striped pink and purple bedspread.

The top row begins somewhere in 1993 and those numerous, tiny notebooks were filled in front to back, then back to front. They are crammed with thoughts, excerpts from books, quotations of people that I knew, drafts of poetry (some of it is, well, let’s say not terrible; philosophy absorbed my poetry and nowadays I tend to only use poetry as a gesture in my thinking, to tell myself to change my speed, alter my rhythm). I had one of those on me almost all the time.

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Got a Light?

I have enjoyed watching folks talk about the latest season of Twin Peaks and around the home we have been talking about it quite a bit. I appreciate this post over on the Nightshirt, not least of which for reminding me that this isn’t just a David Lynch joint, that Frost’s influence is key, too. Pointing out the series’s connection to Kubrick’s The Shining also clarifies and I find it exciting to consider how this connects the series to Stephen King and his particular Americana.

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Fire Walk with Me?

Rewatching the original run of Twin Peaks is an illuminating experience, especially alongside the third season. The show establishes joins the surreal and magical to an increasingly traumatic series of scenes in a way that suggests the traumatic material forms the axis of the series. More than that, it suggests that there is a kernel of suffering and cruelty at the center of the ‘mysteries’ that distract us from it.

Every time I think I have a handle on what that trauma is, it deepens and broadens itself, encompassing a wider gyre. There is a question that opens here about the nature of time that necessarily entails asking after the particular shape time takes in relationship to human consciousness. Part of the temporal patterns of repetition have their roots in an inability to confront our culpability in suffering, that we repeat certain patterns precisely because we use them as a form of distraction, a dream from which we dread waking. There is a hint of Freud in this, but in many ways Freud performs this distraction more than he is able to grasp it.

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[NB] Kinship, Maternity, Gender

Ancestry and lineage are hot topics in magical circles these days, but in talking about these things we often fall into vague and romantic notions about how kinship is constituted and defined. Having talked about the very concrete connections between kinship and kalunga recently, Lucien Scubla’s Giving Life, Giving Death: Psychoanalysis, Anthropology, Philosophy has been a timely read. The way in which Scubla repositions kinship studies to emphasize the central fact of maternity (and highlight how it is often overlooked) resonates with much of my own thinking.

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