By Eric Wagner
Special guest blogger
In a February 15 comment on Tom Jackson’s blog post about the sixth circuit chapter of Prometheus Rising, Spookah (BFHN) said...
Thank you Tom Jackson for opening the discussion on chapter 12, and for providing the links.
The first exercize sort of links back to the Heinlein quote, along with the picture, on page 107.
I’d say that we are maybe more used to comparing big city life with ant colonies, with the type of time-lapses found in Ron Fricke’s Koyaanisqatsi or Baraka now fairly common place.
Ex. 5: “see how long after reading this chapter you encounter an amazing coincidence”.
So I read this chapter 12 on Monday afternoon. Then the same evening, I watched the last episode of the docu mini-series Capitalism (2014), which featured excerpts from the films Intolerance (the Babylonian part) and Scarface (the 1932 Howard Hawkes version). It so happened that I had watched Intolerance the previous week, and Scarface the previous day.
Intolerance was a favorite of RAW, it gets a haiku in Email to the Universe, and he asked to watch it on the first week of the MLA 8 Circuits of Mind course.
As for Scarface, a few hours before going to see it I was reading a few pages from Eric Wagner’s Insider’s Guide to RAW, including the lexicon entry for 23, which ends with this: “after reading sombunall of this book, you will probably notice a few more 23’s than usual. Perhaps a lot more. Just a coincidence, I suspect.” I did spot a 23 during the film, as a street number right above the main character’s head.
Ex. 6: “What messages is your right brain trying to send to your left brain?”
So far I came up with three possibilities. The first is that Bob Wilson really seems up to something here, and that I should keep on studying PR and doing the exercizes.
Another is that Eric Wagner might already part of the Jungian collective unconscious, conspiring together with Ishtar and Al Capone in the mythical realm.
The last one is wondering if I should start to worry, because it’s usually not a good sign when you think the TV is talking to you.
Intolerance also has a scene in the modern section where someone finds a quarter. I wonder if that scene inspired the quarter finding exercises in Prometheus Rising. For a few years a mall in Hollywood had an elephant design motif inspired by Intolerance, but they removed the elephants because the film Griffith directed before Intolerance, Birth of a Nation, contained so much egregious racism. Thinking of elephants makes me think of Heinlein’s “The Man Who Traveled in Elephants.”
The coin flipping character George Raft played in the original Scarface became a cinematic archetype, showing up in the final dance sequence in Singin’ in the Rain and most interestingly in Some Like It Hot where an older George Raft responds to the trope.
I like the film Ishtar, and I enjoyed the condescending responses I got from people who had not seen the film but who “knew” how bad it “was” when I rented the video thirty odd years ago. I love how Neil Gaiman used Ishtar in Sandman.
People have different notions about the ordering of the sixth and seventh circuits. Leary usually saw the sixth circuit as the neuroelectric circuit and the seventh circuit as the neurogenetic circuit. Bob Wilson usually reversed these. Richard Rasa addresses this in the afterword to the Hilaritas edition of Prometheus Rising. I love Tim Leary’s comment, “This listing of possible future levels of human intelligence is necessarily tentative, suggestive, semantically fragile, and intellectually risky” (Flashbacks, pg. 386).
In Quantum Psychology Bob uses the Leary order, but he renames the neurogenetic circuit the morphogenetic circuit inspired by Rupert Sheldrake. Bob commented, “Where Leary and Grof, like Jung and Freud, assumed the non-ego information, not known to the brain, must come from the genes, Sheldrake, a biologist, knew that genes cannot carry such information. He therefore posited a non-local field, like those in quantum theory, which he named the morphogenetic field” (pg. 191).
In Schroedinger’s Cat Bob suggests that many people like to think of evolution as a Promethean struggle, but, really, one only needs to relax and cooperate with the DNA code. Following his observation in Quantum Psychology, I tend to think of this as cooperating with the morphogenetic fields. Promethean struggle makes me think of Beethoven’s music, and cooperating with the morphogenetic fields makes me think of Mozart’s. I had planned to spend most of 2022 listening to Beethoven cd’s when driving and then switch to Mozart as the year progresses, but a cd got stuck in the CD player yesterday. Perhaps I will switch to streaming Mozart piano concerti. One might see this as a synchronicity since the CD got stuck as I prepared to write this entry on this chapter which features Beethoven’s music so prominently.