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Monday, May 17, 2021

Prometheus Rising exercise and discussion group, Week 32

Unsplash photo by Kevin Gent 

Chapter Three is the chapter that deals with the oral bio-survival circuit, the first circuit of the Eight Circuit Model. as developed by Timothy Leary and elaborated on by Robert Anton Wilson. 

Most of you will be familiar with the model and I am not going to try to paraphrase the main points in the chapter. But I thought it was a very interesting chapter in the way RAW worked out some of the implications of the their on the first circuit, and I wanted to offer a couple of notes.

Wilson writes for example of "the 'undeclared civil war' of the predatory criminal class in every 'civilized' nation" and I think that's a vivid description of how crime feels for many people in the U.S. Here in Cleveland, I think many people choose to live in the suburbs not because of "white flight" but because they want to feel reasonably safe, and it's much harder to do that if you live in Cleveland itself. (During a particularly horrible crime in 2019, a man and wife who ran a used car business were shot dead, their dog also was shot dead, and two of their cars were stolen from the lot.)

And in another section of the chapter, Wilson writes that "all schools of yoga -- Buddhist, Hindu or Sufi" all concentrate on "restoring natural breathing before trying to move the student on to higher circuits and wider consciousness."

I don't know much about Hindu or Sufi practices and I'm not an expert on all of the schools of Buddhism, but I can certainly confirm that in the Theravada Buddhism widely practice in southern Asia, usually offered in the western world as Insight meditation or as Vipassana, awareness of breathing is always the meditation technique that is taught and concentrated upon, both to produce calm and to generate awareness of the present moment.

I am sure we will be concentrating on the seven exercises for this chapter (up from three last chapter), but for now, does anyone want to offer any thoughts on the comments on this interesting chapter?  Or anything about getting started on the exercises?



Anonymous said...

Iain Spence:

Strange to see a Wayrates advert along with your post. Not that you're to blame of course. But just kind of surreal, especially with a nice photo of Bob Wilson just above. I wonder if the same advert turns up in the States.

The advert has clothes of the macho-dickhead variety: gun imagery 'I am the Weapon', USA flags, Christian Crusade images, crucifixes along with violence. It's kind of like a clumsy Capitol Seige fashion show, meets the apocalypse.

I shouldn't think the folks who wear such gear will be doing much meditation : )

On a slightly different topic, you talked of libraries I think in the last PR post. There was an excellent documentary on the TV (UK) examining the decline of violence over the centuries. It was on last week.

So, they tested people's reactions to photos of people in different states of emotion. What they found was that people who read novels could also 'read' other people's emotional reactions more easily (and therefore empathise more deeply with them). They reckoned that both reading (and the novel) had made global culture less violent as a result. I must say it was all rather heart-warming. They even covered NVDA at the end.

Anyway, I did my bit for your blog and clicked on the button that said that the crap advert was not appropriate for your content. I shouldn't think that Google will take note...

Agustin Reyes said...

I'm still working out the quote at the commencement of the Chapter "Genes, like Leibnitz's monads, have no windows, the higher properties of life are emergent
- Edward Wilson, Sociobiology

Is the last name a coincidence... is anything?

I'm also a little heartbroken at the story of the gosling who imprinted on the ping pong ball - did the goose suffer for its unorthodox life? I realize I'm anthropomorphizing the situation, but did it see its relationship as fulfilling? Who can know such things?

Can anyone talk to the idea on page 48 (kindle version) about hospitalized child-birth always being traumatic and resulting almost certainly in creating a bad imprint?
What is meant by bad here? The signal to noise ration, the strength or weakness of the imprint, the relationship 'balance' to other circuits etc?
I need to go over my notes, as I don't think he covered that? At least not in Ch. 3

Does the mechanistic and rapid nature of circuit I have any bearing on human Neoteny? Or maybe the imprinting itself has more of a bearing?

Cleveland Okie (Tom Jackson) said...

@Iain, sorry about the crap advert, but as you note, I have no control over them.

Oz Fritz said...

The idea of hospital births almost always resulting in bad C1 imprints gets attributed to radical pediatricians. This seems a Class B statement (as classified in the recently posted RAW Semantics essay linked to on this blog a few days ago) in that it appears unverifiable to personal experience. I would like to see new data about this since he wrote it decades ago.I was born in a hospital and I don't suffer from C1 anxiety even when the money ticket situation runs low or becomes unpredictable.

I would expect all births to be traumatic in some way for both the mother and child, it looks that way to me. I don't know if trauma always results in a bad imprint, I don't consider that automatically the case.

This led me to wonder if working with the higher circuits can positively influence the lower ones? In one iteration of this model C5, the neurosomatic circuit = the higher aspect of C1; C6 known as the Higher Emotional in Gurdjieff's system would be the more intelligent side of C2, the Emotional centrum. The question: can you solve C1 problems and issues by turning on C5? The martial arts exercize given here suggests the answer yes.

BFHN said...

I find it amusing that first, RAW tells us about the importance of "restoring natural breathing before trying to move the student on to higher circuits and wider consciousness”. But then in the exercizes he spends more time describing panting (“as forbidden by almost all experts on health”) than telling us how to do “proper yoga breathing.” It could be a subtle hint indicating that, even though PR can be seen as a user’s manual for the nervous system, the reader is still expected to do their own research on the side.

RAW at some point quotes the Gnostic Gospel of Truth, from the Nag Hammadi library. If I understand his train of thoughts, he is saying that “history is a nightmare” because most people are “sleeping” (Gurdjieff’s wording) and thus react mechanically more often than not through violence.
I do not know if that is what Joyce had in mind (besides, this Gospel was found 23 years after the completion of Ulysses), but I sure like better an explanation reaching back several millenniums than a purely Ireland-centric reading of the famous quote.

Terence McKenna often seemed to imply that humanity fell into history when it lost touch with nature (pretty much meaning when we stopped feasting regularly on psylocibin, I assume). The few societies that still have shamans and a culture of using psychedelics are deemed ‘primitives’ by our civilizations because they never advanced much technologically (at least from our point of view). Since they have virtually been living the same type of life for such a long time, it could be argued that they do not have a History in the way we do. Although I have no anthropological knowledge of, say, tribal warfare in the Amazon.

Bob Wilson also writes that “as civilization has advanced, the pack-bond (the tribe, the extended family) has been broken.” This clearly is another huge difference between the way we live, and the type of aforementioned societies. “This is the root of the widely diagnosed “anomie”, or “alienation”, or “existential anguish””. The Gnostics themselves were kind of big on the existential bum trip, what with their worldview of a God of the material world dumping us there just to watch us suffer. And indeed at a much more ‘advanced’ stage of civilization, Sartre was seeing reasons enough to put an end to it all in the roots of a tree.

Regarding the opening quote, wikipedia says that: “In many Gnostic systems, God is known as the Monad, the One. [...] The various emanations of God are called æons. According to Hippolytus, this view was inspired by the Pythagoreans, who called the first thing that came into existence the Monad, which begat the dyad, which begat the numbers, which begat the point, begetting lines, etc.”
And: “[the Gospel of Truth] says that ignorance caused the formation of the world by the aeons. It then describes Jesus as having been sent down by God to remove ignorance from humans and the aeons, to perfect them and restore union with the Father and correct the error that was the creation of the world.”

I also liked seeing a mention of Pynchon, who came up here in the past few months.

Oz Fritz said...

p. 29: "In 1968, a U.S. Public Health survey showed that 85% of the population had one or more symptoms that we would call bad first-circuit imprinting or conditioning. These symptoms included dizzy spells, heart palpitations, wet palms and frequent nightmares.
This means that 85 out of the next 100 people you meet should be regarded more or less, 'the Walking Wounded"

This appears another Class B (unverifiable) statement. We can approach this with skepticism, this survey looks out of date by over 50 years, yet I suspect it has some measure of accuracy judging by our large dependency on anti-depressants and other pharmaceuticals to feel good and/or to function; if not to feel good, at least to not feel like total shit. Other circumstantial evidence supports this proposition – dis-eases of the oral variety: chain smoking, overeating, etc.

Another useful piece of information from this Class B statement is the implied instruction to practice compassion for others. Implied, because not directly stated - it could be only my natural reaction to this data that I project onto it. However, as anyone might guess, I take seriously the hint in the new Preface to look at the symbolic/alchemical side.

RAW refers to a survey 15 years out of date when PR first got published, maybe that gap was less when he first wrote the chapter. I consider the mention of 68 symbolic of a solution to this problem. The ideogram appears simple and basic: 68 US Public Health simply by removing the periods abbreviating United States and deciphering the Tiphareth/Hod symbolism.

No such agency as U.S. Public Health exists. RAW probably meant U.S. Public Health Service. I suspect he deliberately dropped Service from the designation to get:
U+S+P+H = 151
151 = "The Fountain of Living Waters" another metaphor describing the same function as the 68 symbolism.

The Fountain of Living Waters scripture comes the Bible, Book of Jeremiah Chapter 17 verse 13 though either Crowley, Mathers, or Bennett opted to give it capital letters in 777. Reading verses 10 - 14 of this Bible chapter states and affirms what I've written above though I suggest interpreting the phrase "O LORD" as your HGA or yourself with C6 at the top of the mix rather than the external Judeo/Christian Yahweh. Israel can be read as " is real" via Joycean phonetic multiplicity.

BFHN said...

So the Lord, “spring of living water”, as interpreted within our framework would mean the free flow of emotions (and as such including as well compassion for the Walking Wounded and others in general). And possibly one’s functioning psychosomatic neurofeedback system. Or properly activated C5 and C6. This all seem to link back to your previous Pynchon-based interpretations Oz Fritz (from Bleeding Edge rather than Gravity’s Rainbow, though).
Just a precision, when you say C6, you do mean the sixth circuit as in PR, collective neurogenetic?

Talking about oral bio-survival, chapter 68 of the Book of Lies is called Manna (“a heavenly cake which, in the legend, fed the Children of Israel in the Wilderness”). We get mentions of “chocolate”, “Mousse Noix”, and “little meringues with cream and chestnut-pulp”. I would say these fall under RAW’s definition of “really sweet and gooey desert” to be enjoyed once a week in exercize 2.

I kind of like Israel=is real, but seeing how “is” and “real” are two words Bob would come to try and avoid at all cost, I feel unsure as to how the HGA could be a hope for it. Unless we mean going beyond such notions as “to be” and “reality”.

Oz Fritz said...

@BHKN, the 6th Circuit in Leary's model goes by different names, I suspect they all indicate the same territory with the name changing as understanding of the circuit changes. I regard all the neuro-circuits as vast multiplicities; the different iterations of C6 seem parallel rather than serial. Meaning that the way RAW describes C6 in PR doesn't necessarily replace or make invalid other iterations like those found in Cosmic Trigger, Starseed Signals, Game of Life, Exo-Psychology, Info-Psychology, etc. I haven't read PR in a long time, I haven't reached the PR chapter on C6, still on chapter 3. I think of C6 as the neuro-electric circuit, a convenient name I use for territory largely unknown.

Chapter 68, Manna, very much fits into the story, thanks for bringing it up. I'll try to find the link for the blog where I wrote of it and post it in a future comment.

If your interpretation of E-prime forbids certain interpretations of sounds because they resemble forbidden words, or if you imagine RAW wouldn't for the same reason then don't use Israel that way in your subjective qabalistic lexicon, it was merely a suggestion. To me, this objection appears your elephant ... er, I mean irrelevant.

BFHN said...

Thank you for your answer as usual, Oz Fritz.
About my question regarding C6, I agree that the name does not matter. I had the switch between C6 and C7 in mind and was making sure that when talking about C6 you do not mean the metaprogramer.

Indeed I was wondering if RAW would make a similar connection for Israel, but I think you're being pretty convincing now. Not only obviously he did not write the Bible, but even PR isn't written in E-Prime and anyway, I would agree that such concerns have no place in the world of puns and phonetic sound. Finding meaning for ourselves and making connections matter more.

Something for me to meditate upon today, may 23rd, my monthly Cosmic Schmuck day.

Oz Fritz said...

BFHN, thank-you for the input. I often feel like a Cosmic Schmuck making these comments. Lately I've been looking at more recent developments in Science, particularly the ongoing efforts to formulate a Theory of Everything. I sometimes come across short, interesting statements like: "Science advances through conjecture and criticism." I like making conjectures and appreciate whatever error correction feedback/criticism results.

I don't know exactly how the higher circuits work. I don't know if C6 accurately represents the metaprogrammer or if that should go into the C7 category. I don't know the best way to draw the map, research ongoing. I have a few suspicions regarding the C6 territory as a result of experimentation, such as, for instance, that it can transfer energy.