The Buddha gives his first lecture after enlightenment.
(This week: Page 272, "I. THE FAUST PARSON, SINGULAR" to "not huddled around my shower stall, Page 282)
What could be more Discordian than a Buddhist sutra delivered during an acid trip by Dr. Ignotum Per Ignotius, one of the personas of Discordianism co-founder Greg Hill?
Malik and Simon are let in by a young man with a "Frisco-style" beard and hairstyle, and it would be appropriate indeed if the setting of the scene was California, where Discordianism was founded and where Buddhism and acid played important roles in the counterculture.
The Buddhas lectures to his followers (or, if you like, sermons) were known as "sutras," and Buddha would address his followers as "O, nobly born," so when Dr. Ignotius addresses Malik in this fashion he self-consciously turns his talk into a sutra by using the same phrase (page 279).
"The name was chosen by my predecessors, Malaclypse the Younger," page 275. Malaclypse the Younger was an earlier name adopted by Greg Hill; later, as Discordianism developed, he adopted the Dr. Iggy persona.
"Of course, the quirkiest, most chaotic things that exist are other people — and that's why they're so obsessed with trying to control us," page 278. I recently finished reading a book, Nothing to Envy by Barbara Demick, about North Korea, a dictatorship in which one man at the top attempts to ruthlessly control the behavior and thoughts of an entire nation. I'm pretty sure Illuminatus! is not freely circulated there.
Here's the heart of the sutra:
Feeling paranoid? Good: illumination is one the other side of absolute terror. And the only terror that is truly absolute is the horror of realizing that you can't believe anything you've been told. You have to realize fully that you ARE "a stranger and afraid in a world you never made," like Houseman says. (Page 278).
The reference is to Housman, not "Houseman," i.e. A.E. Housman. The quotation is from the Last Poems:
And how am I to face the odds
Of man’s bedevilment and God’s?
I, a stranger and afraid
In a world I never made.
The text is available.
And here is another important point: "The life history which most of us carry around in our skulls is more our own creation than it is an accurate recording of realities," page 281.
(Next week: "There are times when dignity is suicide," page 282, to "that sign is absolutely the whole clue to how the show runs, page 292).