What should a religion actually *do*? If a belief system provides only a
mythological cosmology, moral proscriptions, and/or a social
environment, is it actually a religion, or just a means of control?
Episode 57, in which I commit social suicide. Just kidding! Kind of.
In the video clip
linked below you can see me in the throes of religious ecstasy as the Divine Feminine
incarnates in my consciousness, then dealing with the overwhelming
energies that surge through me in the wake of the experience. With this upload, I'm putting my money where my mouth is.
I know I look like a
lunatic. But please don't dismiss my claims out of hand! All I can do is tell you how this work has changed me for
the better. My family and friends will attest to it: I am a far kinder,
more compassionate, more self-controlled person than I used to be. I
have a vastly expanded emotional range. And best of all, I seem to have
cured my lifelong depression and found a way to treat my chronic
loneliness. Oh yeah, and I've learned how to sing, and my dancing has improved (marginally). Bonus!
I think other people will experience similar results. Hence, my pedagogical and proselytizing mission…
Note: I maintain that one of the things that makes phonomancy remarkable is that it trains you to remain completely lucid while under the psychic load of superheroic doses of substantia. To gather evidence for this claim, I've long had a practice of shooting video during ceremonies. Lately my approach has been to do my visionary work in the dark, then turn on a bright light--a photographer's lightbox--so I can speak directly into the camera and explain what's going on in my head. What follows is a transcript of the comments I made between songs during last Saturday's ceremony. It's a useful document of my evolving method and visionary mythos. It's also eyewitness testimony to how effing weird it is to be seized by the Unconscious in this way, to be made a prophetic mouthpiece for the archetype of the Self in its aspect as the Herald.
Recorded at 37:45, after the song "Moonage Daydream": I learned a really useful lesson. You can ask to see what's at…
This morning as I was meditating I suddenly found myself thinking of this scene from Steven Spielberg's masterpiece, Saving Private Ryan:
Tom Hanks's character, Captain John Miller, has just survived storming the beach at Normandy on D-Day. Now he's visiting battalion headquarters to report to his commanding officer. As he waits, he can't help but notice the soldiers around him, all clerks, enjoying hot shaves, hot coffee, and roast beef sandwiches. He's been cold and wet and surviving on C rations for days. Can you blame him for being a little envious of the pogues? He's the one risking his life in combat, he's the one swimming high seas of terror and horror in order to accomplish his mission, but there are no comforts provided for him. Only yet another mission.
It doesn't seem fair, does it? He's earned those small luxuries a hundred times over. Compared to him, a commander of an elite platoon of infantry, these men hardly rate as soldiers.
The visions that come to me in ceremony are essentially dreams that I experience while wide awake. Like dreams, they evanesce quickly--if you don't record them immediately upon returning to "normal" consciousness (using that term advisedly, obvs), the details become blurry, or maybe you'll forget the experience altogether.
That's where shooting video of ceremonies comes in handy. In between every song I work with, I pause to explain to the camera what just happened, how I'm feeling about it, and what's coming up next. That way I have a detailed record of events. The next day--or five days later--I can review the footage to refresh my memory about something, and sometimes even discover that I'd talked about an experience I didn't remember until that moment.
The problem is this results in a lot of material. Imagine if you could wake up to write down a complete narrative for every dream you had in the course of an evening. Not only would you be exha…