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Monday, May 10, 2021

Prometheus Rising discussion and exercise group, Week 31

Photo by Judith Browne on Unsplash 

By Apuleius Charlton
Special guest blogger 

Tathagata said he had many names and none of them meant anything. It isn’t time to talk of the atman yet, so I will talk about the worthlessness of names.

Tonight I have meditated upon the Hapsburg eagle, the sigil sent to me by the Illuminated Bobby Campbell, Illuminator in the tradition of the monks, artists, and wastrels of Old. Appropriate it is then, that he would send me a symbol of an old and illustrious house to contemplate. One side of the perfectly folded paper is printed in computer ink and sealed in raised sigil of Only Maybe, the other seems to be done in lead. What had led the piece to be here in my house at this point? 

Exercise 4:

Not that long ago, on the Maybe Logic forum that fruited in the summer of 2012, another disappointing Apocalypse, I  met Bobby, asking if he was the illustrator of the excellent New Falcon editions of The Historical Illuminatus! Chronicles. I never expected to make his acquaintance years later at a small sci-fi convention with the redoubtable publisher Tom Jackson. Yet, I did; and now the paper is in my hand. 

An ancient symbol of an infinitely powerful family, gifted with Freud’s divine prosthesis, and the value of the object in the lead lines on the back, tracing the precisely laid ink surer and more craftily than genealogies. There is effort and consequence, personal meaning. Lead has been considered the lowest element, here it is as holy and poisonous as cancerous quicksilver. The smears of poison rock are more meaningful than precision. 

Paper comes from China, printing from Germany, or so the common knowledge goes. My hands are formed of silly men and women who frolicked, fucked and fought across God’s green earth for hundreds of years. One body of naked apes accrued enough power to fuck themselves into jacked-up-jawed oblivion. Their sigil is in my hand and it represents an order of fiction about another incestuous family, the Merovingians. Bobby Cambpell is perhaps the cleverest and best of RAW’s keepers. 

Inside the folded slip is a business card/theological debate and a faux tarot card for Eris. Like the lightning, the moment comes and goes, but one wonders truly...where did all this Chaos come from? A piece of paper rests in my hands. An infinity of slack-jawed power can’t be summarized in a doodle. But ideas can. What good does mealy mouthed prophecy do? 


Eric Wagner said...

Terrific blog. All praises to the wonderful Bobby Campbell. I suspect Bob would have loved his book "RAW Art". I only met him once, at the memorial for Bob in Santa Cruz in 2007. I also met Mike Johnson, Mike Gathers, Richard Rasa, Ted Hand, Brian Shields, Christina Pearson and many other wonderful folk at that momentous occassion.

Bobby Campbell said...

I super very much appreciate all this wonderfully elucidated hyperbole!!

The drawing you have is original art from the Chapter 2 illustration from the 2011-ish New Falcon edition of The Widow's Son.

The ink on the front is from a Papermate felt tip marker :)))

Eric! I remember coming up to after having gotten especially stoned on the beach while RAW's ashes were distributed into the bay, because I had an idea I thought you would like, about how text messages were bringing back Ezra Pound's telegram style abbreviations.

Looking fwd to the return of suchlike events!

Oz Fritz said...

Great writing and a wonderful illustration. The picture reminds me of a philosophical concept called "the fold" from the book of the same name by Deleuze based on the writings of Leibniz. "A model for expression in contemporary aesthetics, the concept of the monad is viewed in terms of folds of space, movement and time. Similarly, the world is interpreted as a body of infinite folds and surfaces that twist and weave through compressed time and space"

For instance, in the OP the memory of events that took place in 2012 resulting in the object of meditation get folded into the present through the exercize.

For some reason, the worthlessness of names reminds me of the character of the Consul from Malcolm Lowry's Under the Volcano. More often than not, the Consul gets called by his role or position, rather than his given name.

BFHN said...

"What's in a name?"

I appreciate the synch at play here. While reading this blog entry yesterday morning, it reminded me that I had not gotten yet the thank you gift from Bobby and how cool would it be to find it in my mailbox that same day. Well, I can happily report that indeed when coming back home in the evening, I had an envelope stamped 'Gloria Discordia!' waiting for me.

I thanked him and mentionned this blog post saying that in my eyes "the cosmic joker is at it". As to what he answered: "Very glad the package found its way to you with some degree of comic timing!"
I am not sure if that's a typo or a pun, but in French comique means comical. And of course, BC does comics. Besides, the drawing I got was a joker figure (a clown? Harlequin? the Fool? All of the above and more?)
Comical cosmic comics?
Multiple levels of meaning "unfolding" here from what might "just" have been a writing mistake. Regardless, the pun truly feels Joycean.
Bobby Campbell sure seems illuminated and illuminating.
Peace & Laugh