Monday, June 26, 2017

Email to the Universe discussion group, Week Seven



By Gregory Arnott, guest blogger

"LSD Dogs and Me"

Concerning RAW's love of our canine friends I thought I'd share a quote from The Universe Next Door (pg. 14-15 Pocket Books Edition):

"There was one species on Terra that lived in very close symbiosis with the domesticated primates. This was a variety of domesticated canines called dogs. The dogs loved the primates very much, and each species had learned a great deal from mimicking the other. The dogs had learned to achieve a rough simulation of guilt and remorse and worry and other domesticated primate characteristics. The domesticated primates had learned to achieve simulations of loyalty and dignity and cheerfulness and other canine characteristics."  

On our robotic nature: 

"There is no escape from our robothood unless and until we first recognize the fact. Only then can we learn to take control of our nervous systems and reprogram our individual realities." Leary and Wilson, Neuropolitics (quoted on page 89) 

& (from Illuminatus! pg. 402) 

"That's why the Zen Roshis say, 'One who achieves supreme illumination is like an arrow flying straight to hell.' Keep in mind what I said about caution, George. You can release at any moment. It's great up there, and you need a mantra to keep you away from it until you learn how to use it. Here's your mantra, and if you knew the peril you are in you'd brutally burn it into your backside with a branding iron to make sure you'd never forget it: I Am The Robot. Repeat it." 

I will testify that the use of psychedelic substances was a drastic experience that I'll never be the same afterwards. While my intake was nowhere as heroic as RAW's I will say that the world presents a lot more seemingly concrete variables than it ever had before. By the time I had tried LSD I had grown my own psilocybin mushrooms and was familiar with tripping; but lysergic acid diethylamide is an experience unto itself.  The revelation of just how baroque and overwrought our consciousnesses are is enough to keep you wondering...I imagine for the rest of my life. 

(On pg. 110 the name Lobachevsky appears in a different font- I don't have my New Falcon edition with me so I am unable to corroborate if this was intentional or not.) 

Concerning RAW's musings, as someone who recently emerged from being a male between 16-24 I will attest to how frustrating and crazed those years were at times ... now with my generation depending upon our parents well into our thirties I think it could be extrapolated this purgatorial time of societal/hormonal pressure has grown longer. Perhaps this can explain the number of young men making horses asses out of themselves arguing for the alt-right. 

The Provoked Wife was a Restoration-era play that dwelt upon gender relations in marriage. 

"Mary, Mary Quite Contrary" is RAW's conspiracy writing at its most streamlined. He pack a wallop of mysteries in this short essay which is well constructed from beginning to end. Considering the scrutiny that the work of Baigent, Lincoln, and Leigh faced (Baigent's name on pg. 123 is also in the odd font) after the release of The Da Vinci Code their work seems to have been mostly discredited...or at least its what "They" want us to think. 

It is a pity that RAW doesn't note Jean Cocteau's work with alchemical symbolism and his magical Orphic Trilogy. It could have helped set the atmosphere a little more. The relationship between Alchemy and Surrealism is documented through the lives and work of Cocteau, Duchamp, Daumal, and Dali...I'm sure there's more links that I just don't know about.

It is also worth noting that frequent commenter on the blog and RAW scholar Eric Wagner edited a poetry journal titled "Noon Blue Apples."  

midnight purple bananas

Next week we'll cover pgs. 129-159 up to "Part III: In Defense of the Damned"

Sunday, June 25, 2017

How the CIA worked with drug traffickers

A new documentary on the History Channel, "America's War on Drugs," apparently tells the story of how the CIA has worked with drug traffickers.  It's available online at the link. I have not seen it yet, but it sounds interesting.

The Intercept has an article about the series:  "The war on drugs has always been a pointless sham. For decades the federal government has engaged in a shifting series of alliances of convenience with some of the world’s largest drug cartels. So while the U.S. incarceration rate has quintupled since President Richard Nixon first declared the war on drugs in 1971, top narcotics dealers have simultaneously enjoyed protection at the highest levels of power in America."

Hat tip, John Merritt.

Supergee also has a related post about a Reason podcast, appropriately tagged "War on some drugs." 

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Saturday links

Episode of "Exploring the Bizarre." Features Valerie D'Orazio AND Adam Gorightly!

New England Journal of Medicine survey of the medical effects of providing health coverage to more people. It seems to show pretty conclusively that as many people as possible ought to be covered under Medicaid, or some other form of coverage. Via Tyler Cowen. 

New post by Oz Fritz in his Deleuze/Crowley series. And he likes early Genesis, as I do.

New Nick Herbert poem.

Jesse Walker finds a good one. (Above)

Bryan Caplan ask me anything.

I posted a couple of brief comments on Monday's episode of the online reading group, sorry for running late, it's been that kind of week.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Cosmic Trigger play news

Tom Baker as Robert Shea. Pic by Simon Annand

Michelle Olley has sent out an official news bulletin from the Cosmic Trigger play folks who recently completed a successful run of the play in London.

Two bits of news: If you attended the play, please fill out the audience survey (there is an handy button in the message).

Also, there's good news about the play finding an audience. "By the final week, we were completely sold out," Olley reports  

Thursday, June 22, 2017

New RAW YouTube channel has lots of material [UPDATED]

Martin Wagner, the Austrian Robert Anton Wilson fan who has become an important figure in RAW fandom because of his diligence, has some fresh news.

Martin has created a new RAW video and audio channel on YouTube. This is a notable achievement because it has a great deal of material that is not currently available at the Robert Anton Wilson Fans site.

Here are links to some specific items:

Robert Anton Wilson Prisoner rap sessions "Many Happy Returns" (1978)

Prisoner rap session "Hammer Into Anvil" (1978)

The Prism Lecture.(1982)

Falcon Press event talk. (1987)

Trajectories #11 "An Hour With Robert Anton Wilson." (1992)

Trajectories #18 "A Summary of My Philosophy." (1997)

Unknown Lecture. (1987)

Bridge Psychedelic Conference Talk. (1991)

Something's Happening with Roy Tuckman (1988)

Something's Happening with Roy Tuckman (1989)

Something's Happening with Roy Tuckman (1990)

Ireland and Irish poetry lecture (1988)

Map of Consciousness (2002). 

KPFA Radio Interview (1989)

Coast to Coast with Art Bell, three hour radio show,  1997, apparently blocked in U.S.

William Reich in Hell (1999)

Richard Bandler seminar first lecture (2000)

Richard Bandler seminar second lecture (2000)

Richard Bandler seminar third lecture (2000)

Preparing for the 21st century (1988)

The channel also has some more well known and widely available material. Again, the channel link is here. 

UPDATE: Forgot to add that if anyone has old audio or VHS cassettes and wants to share with Martin, so he can share with everyone else, please email him at