Monday, October 5, 2015
Cosmic Trigger for the next group read?
Christian Greer wrote to me recently to ask what the next group read will be on this blog... It's a topic I've been needing to take up.
Since this blog was created, there have been readings of Quantum Psychology, Masks of the Illuminati, Coincidance and, most recently, Illuminatus!
There are obviously many books that can be considered, but here are the arguments for Cosmic Trigger: The Final Secret of the Illuminati: (1) It remains one of Robert Anton Wilson's most popular and influential books; (2) It is timely, given that the estate is planning very shortly to issue a new edition; (3) It is also timely, given the interest, particularly in the UK, in "Chaos Magick" and in magick in general. (4) Daisy Eris staged a dramatic adaption of it in the UK. She plans to revive it there, and bring it over to the United States in 2017.
Other books have of course been suggested.
Eric Wagner has nominated Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov. (As I understand it, the books use of footnotes influenced the structure of RAW's The Widow's Son.) Christian suggested The Book of the Subgenius. Christian writes, "Its debt to Illuminatus! is immense, e.g. numerous reference to Atlantis myths, Lovecraftian gods, etc. It even mentions Eris (and Discordians) on a number of occasions! Furthermore, it is damn amusing."
I happen to be particularly fond of Cosmic Trigger Vol. 2: Down to Earth, which I think is a bit underrated. And then again, we haven't tackled such major works of fiction as the Schroedinger's Cat trilogy and the "Historical Illuminatus!" books.
I like Nabokov, and I would like to participate in a discussion of Pale Fire someday, but I'm concerned about how many people would take part in a Nabokov discussion on a RAW blog; Eric, myself, and who else? Then again, Nabokov and his legacy need no help from me. His books remain in libraries and bookstores, new books about him come out all the time (there was a long review of a new book in the Wall Street Journal not long ago) and his place seems secure.
I'm more about securing the place of writers who haven't gotten enough recognition. One of my previous Internet efforts was to publicize George Alec Effinger. If you don't know who he was, well. that's kind of my point. Robert Anton Wilson's place in the literary canon has not been secured yet. As Christian wrote to me, "From where I stand, there is a good deal of significance in being involved in RAW related projects. I'm under the impression that his day has yet to come. Indeed I hope that my dissertation will play some small role in that."
If we do a discussion of Cosmic Trigger, how would early next year sound to most of you? And would anybody be interested in doing some guest posts, or even leading the discussion?