What's the brain for? amethodnotaposition.blogspot.c…
Recent filming of Alex Grey at CoSM www.youtube.com/watch?v=7yDF6C…
Short HR Giger documentary from about a decade ago. www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1Nyg0…
Great [NeoConservative Admin.] "Asshole" music video www.filmstripinternational.com…
MY NEW WEBSITE IS UP- CorpusCallosum.cc
Sub Rosa 4 can be downloaded at The Daily Grail www.dailygrail.com , the magazine should be published in print this summer. The topics include UFO and technology extraordinaire Jacques Vallee, Mary Magdalene, Skinwalker Ranch, Leary and Crowley, and cryptozoologist Loren Coleman. I think all of you would find great interest in it. If you can, it would be wonderful to make a donation.
For the next 2 Mays and 3 Septembers I'll be going to Provincetown, MA, US to attend the Fine Art Work Center, a part of the Massachusetts College of Art to earn a MFA in Painting.
I also just recently found out that my "How to Make Amends?" ( www.deviantart.com/view/124253…
)has been accepted into the Society of Illustrators student competition. This is a pretty big deal for me because the SI is the most highly respected illustration competition there is and thus is great for an in illustrative resume. My artwork will be on display in the Society of Illustrators gallery in NYC through May.
As a prelude to this week's summary of this week's news, here's one of my favorite old poems NEPTUNE ENTELECHY, with its accompanying piece www.deviantart.com/view/808687…
Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds rising,
10 billion reflective satellite cells firing,
collective perspective hive breathing.
The occulted fire distilled in the sea of body,
tidal tug across the planes beneath solar wind induction.
Sunspots cultivate the brain's constellation cryptogram Mandelbrot map,
betwixt molecular crystal lattice embryogenesis.
Narcotic gemstones dance on the rotating celestial chalice rim of our-glass.
Sands drip as gravity congeals the impedance that's lead to understanding.
Double-bubbles fuse at the junction for communication conduction,
vibratory cerebro-chemical ejaculation.
Ethereal sparks toward the pulsating galactic core of perfect-ion.
The free and infinite ocean of bubbling fermented being coagulates,
and stares back from star-gate in the dew of the deep.
Alchemical harvest on zero-pointed waving backdrop of time-emittance.
Thunder gives the warning for quickening coming cyclone of orange.
It's now mushrooming midnight and the clockwork's trident is about to ring 13.
Ensuing meltdown into the marbleized wax matrix interface.
Quintessential alarm sounds from behind the sun dispelling the shadow-play.
Non-linear bloodline awakens to the gateway,
wherein the jewel within the lotus reveals who is Sirius,
and the flickering fetus goes nova.
Global vertebrae axis pole-shifts into ecliptic unity.
Critical mass compassion transmutates in illumination amidst resurrection.
Chronologic quantum joke to the cosmic yoke.
It's a matter of time De-eMpTied.
POP! Creation ate itself.
May 30, 2006
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
In Iraq over 66 people were killed in attacks, including two CBS News employees when their convoy was struck by a car bomb; a CBS correspondent was seriously injured in the same attack. In Baghdad two tennis players and their coach were killed for wearing shorts, and a Marine helicopter was shot down over the Anbar province. Soldiers were developing emotional relationships with their bomb-defusing robots. "Please fix Scooby Doo," said one soldier, "because he saved my life." Senator John Warner called for hearings into the killings of more than 20 civilians in Haditha by U.S. Marines in 2005, and it was reported that, since 2003, 8,600 British troops had gone AWOL in Iraq; 929 were still missing. Riots broke out in Afghanistan after a U.S. military truck went out of control and killed some civilians. Osama bin Laden released an audiotape in which he claimed that convicted terrorist conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui was not involved in the September 11 attacks. "Brother Moussaoui was arrested two weeks before the events," said bin Laden, "and if he had known somethingeven very littleabout the September 11 group, we would have informed the leader of the operation, Mohamed Atta, and the others . . . to leave America before being discovered." British MP George Galloway said that an assassin would be "morally justified" in killing Prime Minister Tony Blair. Seventy-five prisoners were on hunger strike at Guantanamo Bay prison, and a charity organization published a report claiming that 60 minors ages 14 and older have been held at the prison. President George W. Bush signed into law the Respect for America's Fallen Heroes Act, which limits protests at military funerals. In Ontario, Canada, a man was arrested ten minutes after stealing a hand-held vagina. "He had used it," said a constable.
An earthquake in Indonesia killed more than 5,000 people, flooding in Thailand killed more than 100 people, and four Russian soldiers were killed in Chechnya. The government of Burma extended the house arrest of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi for an unspecified amount of time. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called on the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority to accept the goal of establishing a Palestinian state (and thus acknowledge Israel's right to exist); if Hamas does not comply, he said that he will call a national referendum on the issue. A gay-rights rally in Moscow turned violent when activists were attacked and beaten by anti-gay protesters. "Moscow," shouted the protesters, "is not Sodom!" In Germany, at the official opening of the Hauptbahnhof, the largest railway station in Europe, a man went on a rampage and stabbed 35 people. Because one of the first people he stabbed was HIV positive, concerns were raised that some of the subsequently stabbed may also become infected. A team of researchers in southern Cameroon said that they had found wild chimpanzees carrying the SIVcpz virus, thought to be the precursor to HIV. In Washington, D.C., police searched the 50 acres of office space in the Rayburn House Office Building to find that the "gunfire" that precipitated a several hour lockdown was actually a pneumatic hammer.
Former Enron executives Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling were found guilty of conspiracy and fraud, and in San Diego a man named Lawrence Christopher Smith was sentenced to 84 years to life in prison for shooting and killing a man named Dom Perignon Champagne. A Nebraska judge sentenced a man convicted of sexually assaulting a child to probation because the man is too short for prison. The Supreme Court voted unanimously that police may enter a house without a warrant in order to break up a fight. President Bush ordered that the documents seized by the FBI in a raid on the offices of Representative William Jefferson, a Louisiana Democrat, must be sealed for 45 days, so that Congress and the Justice Department can determine exactly how material seized from Congressional offices should be reviewed. The Justice Department denied reports that Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert (who publicly criticized the FBI for raiding Jefferson's offices) was under investigation for his relationship with former lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Hastert said that the FBI was planting stories in the media to discredit him. Jack Kevorkian was very ill and reportedly had less than a year to live. In Australia, a psychiatrist named Stephen Allnutt testified that financier Brendan Francis McMahon had believed he was helping animals when he mutilated 17 rabbits and a guinea pig while under the influence of methamphetamine. "I wonder," McMahon reportedly said, "if I made a mistake because I never asked the rabbits?" Scientists in North Carolina said that they could grow new, functional rabbit penises, and a jury in Illinois awarded a woman $5 million in compensation for her ruined vagina. In Norway a grevling, or badger, wrecked a man's bedroom. An analysis of FCC decisions found that the following terms or phrases are neither indecent nor profane: "a lot of crap," "ass is huge," "ass," "bitch," "damn," "dick," "dickhead," "fire his ass," "for Christ's sake," "hell," "kick-ass," "kiss my ass," "my ass," "pissed off," "poop," "sex with a dog," "singers that suck," "sit their asses down," "sucked," "up yours," "wiping his ass," and "you suck." NASA scientists claimed that they could extract oxygen from lunar soil, Pat Robertson claimed to have leg-pressed 2,000 pounds, and Senator Bill Frist helped give a gorilla a root canal. A study found that most British men are cry babies. A Sherpa stood naked on the summit of Mount Everest.
It's all in your head... you just have no idea how big your head is!
It is not their intention to destroy... Their intention is to feed for as long as possible on the tremendous energies generated by the evolutionary struggle. Their purpose, therefore, is to prevent man from discovering the worlds inside himself, to keep his attention directed outwards. What would man be like if he could destroy these vampires, or drive them away? The first result would certainly be a tremendous sense of mental relief, a vanishing oppression, a surge of energy and optimism. Then man's energies would turn inward. He would discover that he has many 'selves', and that his higher 'selves' are what his ancestors would have called gods.
Colin Wilson, The Mind Parasites
Exec #2: Yeah, I've had a team working on this over the past few weeks, and what we've come up with can be reduced to two fundamental concepts. One: People aren't wearing enough hats. Two: Matter is energy. In the universe there are many energy fields which we cannot normally perceive. Some energies have a spiritual source which act upon a person's soul. However, this "soul" does not exist ab initio as orthodox Christianity teaches; it has to be brought into existence by a process of guided self-observation. However, this is rarely achieved owing to man's unique ability to be distracted from spiritual matters by everyday trivia.
Exec #3: What was that about hats again?
Exec #2: Oh, Uh... people aren't wearing enough - Monty Python's "The Meaning of Life".
When a human imagines, he actually creates a form on the Astral or even on some higher plane; and this form is as real and objective to intelligent beings on that plane, as our earthly surroundings are to us.
"Time, space and knowledge are the most basic facets of human experience. They are the Being of our being as it manifests in this world. Space allows the world of objects to appear, time makes possible the sequence of events that gives order to our lives; knowledge gives meaning and significance to whatever appears or unfolds. Time and space are the ordinary stuff of existence, which ordinary knowledge aims to know."
(KNOWLEDGE OF TIME AND SPACE - Tarthang Tulku)
_The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. Whosoever does not know it and can no longer wonder, no longer marvel, is as good as dead, and his eyes are dimmed.
OPEN FOR COMMISSIONS
The origin of civilization has ceaselessly been a heatedly debated topic. This question precedes all the answers we have given ourselves, including the predominant mystery of why we are and how we got here. I will attempt an excavation intended for further resolve by elucidating the connections between Sumer, semiotics, and the brain, in the context of historical-human development from pictographic writing to cuneiform. This shift of communication media may have been a pivotal facilitator of neural evolution and thus, lead to a great diversification of cultural and civilizing faculties.
While it is true that the terms "civilization" and "culture" count as synonyms in general usage, and that every distinction maybe be somewhat arbitrary, there are etymological reasons for preferences in their use. The word "culture," with its overtones of something like organic coagulation, something grown through tradition rather than made- has its root meaning as "to cultivate". Anthropologists usually use the term "culture" to refer to the universal human capacity to classify, codify and communicate their experiences symbolically. The word "civilization, on the other hand, appeals to the sense of people being primarily political-economical creatures of complex societal structures who abide by a code of laws.
Sumer was the oldest civilization and the first to develop written language. The most important archaeological discoveries in Sumer are a large number of tablets written in cuneiform (wedge-shaped writing). Sumerian pre-cuneiform script has been discovered on tablets dating to around 3500 BCE. The Sumerian language of ancient Sumer was spoken in Southern Mesopotamia from at least the 4000 BCE. Sumerian was replaced by Akkadian as a spoken language around 2000 BCE, but continued to be used as a sacred, ceremonial and scientific language in Mesopotamia until about 1 AD.
The Sumerian language is generally regarded as being isolated in linguistics because it belongs to no known language family. There have been many failed attempts to connect Sumerian to other language groups. It is an agglutinative language; in other words, morphemes (units of meaning) are added together to create words.
Sumerians invented picture-hieroglyphs (pictograms) that developed into later cuneiform, and theirs is the oldest known written human language. An extremely large body of hundreds of thousands of texts in the Sumerian language has survived, the great majority of these on baked clay tablets. Known Sumerian texts include personal and business letters and transactions, receipts, laws, hymns and prayers, magical incantations, and scientific texts including mathematics, astronomy, and medicine. While all new media (forms of communication) undergo a phase where the audience feels as if reality was both susceptible, invoked, and enacted by the medium, as if falling through the looking glass; and where this process is both feared as leading to insanity and admired for its magical abilities; the Sumerians possess a special place in our history as the bridging culture between vocally transmitted knowledge and literature. And although, despite their overwhelming cultural-influence on all Western civilization (including Judaism), the Sumerian language does not live on in any shape or form. Just to elucidate that latter statement for a moment, the Sumerians were the proto-culture for all the Tigris and Euphrates cultures, including the Babylonians, Assyrians, and Hebrews. They were the first to codify laws in the Code of Hammurabi, although their codification of laws were more direct than our rationalist, philosophical view of laws. Rather, laws covered everything in society, and cities in Sumer compared themselves by the efficacy of their laws. Also, their myths live on in the myths of others as archetypes: such as the fertility goddesss, the snake, the flood, and the mythic dissolution of the one inherent language into the babble of diversified language protocols. Enki (or Ea, as known to the Babylonians), one of two brothers fathered by the top-tier god Anu, was the god of light, freshwater (often depicted with water flowing from his palms), wisdom, civilization, and language- as the recognized benefactor of humanity.
In his book "The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind", Julian Jaynes argues that early man was not conscious in the modern sense, lacking self-awareness and could not think of oneself as an independent, self-willed "I". Instead, the right brain formulated ideas and plans, which were perceived by the left brain as literal voices emanating from outside oneself. In effect, Jaynes says, early man hallucinated constantly, living his life by obeying voices. This is where the gods came from. Each person's god accompanied him constantly through life, always telling him what to do.
What is there to recommend such a bizarre theory? For one thing, Jaynes points out, it explains the preponderance of living, speaking gods in Sumerian and Assyrian texts, and in the Bible and the internal mythological journey. Early man wrote about gods because they were a factual, daily part of his life. Jaynes also draws from studies of modern schizophrenics, whom he argues are simply regressions to ancient forms of consciousness, and various neurological studies of left and right-brainedness. It has been discovered that both schizophrenics and split-brain patients perceive their thoughts as not originating from themselves and lack a self-referential ability to communicate. Notably, both have distorted or altogether destroyed corpus callosums.
Where did the deities go? Jaynes argues that a series of catastrophes and contacts with other cultures forced human beings to integrate the left and right brains and become self-aware, self-willed beings in order to cope with the increasing complexity of the world. Also, a translation of a cuneiform tablet "The Nam-Shub of Enki" ("Spell of Enki") from the epic tale "Enmerkar and the Land of Aratta" seems to be perhaps a facilitator of this socio-lingual transformation into self-referential consciousness.
Jaynes hypothesizes socio-biological reasons for this shift. Jaynes suggests that prior to human consciousness as we know of it today, the hemispheric partioning of the brain acted schizophrenically to induce behavior. The logical left-hemisphere created orders that the right-hemisphere intrepreted as divine commands to act out. Thus, the Sumerian conception of laws, known as the Me [?!], seemed more like a software that was executed by the neural hardware of the people, rather than obeyed. Certainly many people have theorized that there was no conception of Self at some point in our written history, including as late as the Old Testament, and if take it as the truth, then it was the emergence of Self that led to the destruction of language. After all, society was no longer a hive mind, controlled by the writers of the laws (ensi-priests), but a contentious lot of individuals for which (at the time) there was no protocol to order them (governance; note that governance is different from algorithms, though may abide by such).
What spurred on the creation of Self is heavily mythologized tradition. Certainly eating the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil (which before was left to the right brain's abode of deities), the loss of innocence, is the myth of the acquisition of Self. But what was that fruit in reality? What did happen at Babel?
One theory suggests there was a "Lethal Text". This was a story, an incantation in a sense, a magickal spell, a law, an algorithm that interfered with and transfigured the mind. Since the Sumerians believed in the directness of speech, a form of language devoid of symbol-symbolized dichotomies, where speech and thought and action were essentially equivalent, it was natural that the disrupting process was itself language. In their case, it was their light god Enki's spell of babble, a cuneiform tablet describing a story of the destruction of language that had itself the effect of destroying language. Much like a quine (a self-referential symbol-system), it was folded on itself so it told the story of its own actual action. It was, in short, a 'Lethal Text': a text that destroys text.
The "Spell of Enki" seems to be two things: it is a story of linguistic disintegration, and it is an incantation that supposedly causes linguistic disintegration. To hear the tale is to lose the power of understanding speech. It tells of Enki, who "changed the speech" of the population to "put contention into it." This, of course, is similar in content to the Babel legend, where god disrupted the linguistic unity of the people in order to stop the Tower from being built.
It is interesting that many stories about lethal texts and/or linguistic viruses invoke ancient mythology, as if the ancients knew things about language which have been forgotten in the modern world. Jaynes posits that new kind of "unicameral" (though our brain's hemispheres are not entirely united in sync, yet) consciousness swept like a virus through the ancient world, destroying what had been a kind of Edenic innocence, and cites, as evidence Sumerian inscriptions that are structured much like nam-shubs.
The nam-shubs suggest a magickal theory of language, in which the only kind of utterance that can cause the breakdown of language is one that also happens to talk about the breakdown of language. In other words, the surface meaning of the incantation is crucial to its deep effect.
Now what was this bicameral mind? As known to contemporary brain biologists- there are three speech areas, mostly located in the left hemisphere. They are: the supplemental motor cortex; Broca's area; and Wernicke's area. Jaynes focuses on Wernicke's area, which is chiefly the posterior part of the left temporal lobe. It is Wernicke's area that is crucial for human speech.
Pursuing the bicameral mind and what structure serves as a channel between the two main regions, the focus is on the corpus callosum. The corpus callosum is an arched bridge of overlapping channels of nerve fiber located between the brain's hemispheres. It serves as the hub of inter-hemispheric communication, allowing associative sharing of input through its 7 sub-regions and weaving the countless aspects of sensory information into a higher-order whole. In human brains the corpus callosum can be likened to a small bridge by its form and function, a band of transverse fibers, only slightly more than one-eighth of an inch in diameter. This bridge "collects from most of the temporal lobe cortex but particularly the middle gyrus of the temporal lobe in Wernicke's area." And it was this bridge that served as the means by which the "gods" who dwelled in one hemisphere of the human brain were able to give "directions" to the other hemisphere. It is like thinking of the "two hemispheres of the brain almost as two individuals." Because the callosal fibers interconnect so much of the cerebral cortex, especially that cortex considered associative, it has often been suggested that they serve some of the "highest," most educable, and characteristically human functions of the cerebrum.
Jaynes says on page 171, "The bicameral mind (two-chamber mind) is one that functions as an unconscious, two-step process. Automatic reactions and thoughts originate in the right hemisphere of the brain and are transmitted to the left hemisphere as instructions to be acted upon. The bicameral functioning is nature's automatic, learned mode of response without regard to conscious thinking. By contrast, man-made consciousness functions through a deliberate, volitional thought process that is independent of nature's bicameral thought process."
Many evolutionary scientists claim that beliefs of the religious sort are 'hard-wired' into our brains. This neurological adaptation seems to have been selected because, despite some obvious aberrations and exceptions, religious beliefs generally strengthen society and therefore aid the survival of our species- just like our propensity to love, or our universal inclination to live by laws. But even if religion does exactly what the evolutionists say it does, the central problem remains. We may have learnt something more about the workings of society and its institutions, but we are no nearer to understanding why the common ground of all religions everywhere should consist of remarkable, unproven and deeply illogical beliefs in immaterial levels of reality and their alleged influences upon our daily lives. Yet, if they provide no advantage, then how are we to explain the fact that every human society throughout recorded history has been so thoroughly dominated and entranced by such beliefs?
According to Professor David Lewis-Williams, such ideas are not part of the normal, predictable currency of everyday life but arise from the universal human neurological capacity to enter 'altered states of consciousness'- states of deep trance in which extremely realistic hallucinations are experienced. We might feel very sure that there is no more to reality than the material world in which we live, but we cannot prove that this is the case. Theoretically there could be other realms, other dimensions, as all religious traditions and quantum physics alike maintain. Theoretically the brain could be as much a receiver and translator as a generator of consciousness. Thus, it might be fine-tuned in altered states to pick up wavelengths [of light-language] that are normally not accessible to us.
As certain modes of consciousness-perception are no longer necessary, new software is introduced that demands a change in neural hardware. Many protocols are within our capacity allowing our minds access to new ways of thinking, and thus, being. These perhaps higher-functionality protocols are 'altered states of consciousness', including any technique (writing, art, dance, meditation, contemplation, entheogen taking, etc.) that invokes a state of trance and focused (or alternatively very defocused) attention. These states bring the awareness to a level of perception where the Self is sensed in a very new way, in contrast to the current default sensory envelope. Perhaps, outside our current envelope of lingual identification is the principle of Enki waiting with the next nam-shub. All this implies that inside us is what the ancient Sumerians knew as Anunnaki deities, and thus, due to our self-referential mode of conscience and being- we are responsible for shaping our thoughts and actions the way we would hope deity would shape us.
The Nam-Shub of Enki corpuscallosum.cc/cuneiform_sc…
Once upon a time, there was no snake, there was no scorpion,
There was no hyena, there was no lion,
There was no wild dog, no wolf,
There was no fear, no terror,
Man had no rival.
In those days, the land Shubur-Hamazi,
Harmony-tongued Sumer, the great land of the me of princeship,
Uri, the land having all that is appropriate,
The land Martu, resting in security,
The whole universe, the people well cared for,
To Enlil in one tongue gave speech.
Then the lord defiant, the prince defiant, the king defiant,
Enki, the lord of abundance, whose commands are trustworthy,
The lord of wisdom, who scans the land,
The leader of the gods,
The lord of Eridu, endowed with wisdom,
Changed the speech in their mouths, put contention into it,
Into the speech of man that had been one.
Casanova, Manuel F., M.D. The Decade of the Brain journal (vol. 5, issue 2). National Alliance for the Mentally Ill. 1995.
Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative, www.cdli.ucla.edu/
Forty, Jo. Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia. PRC Publishing Ltd. 1999.
Frankfort, Henri. The Birth of Civilization in the Near East. Ernest Benn Ltd / Barnes and Noble Inc. 1968.
Frankfort, Henri. The Art and Architecture of the Ancient Orient. Yale University Press. 1996.
Gwendolyn Leick. A Dictionary of Ancient Near Eastern Mythology. London. Routledge. 1991.
Howard, Pierce J., Ph.D. The Owner's Manual for the Brain. Bard Press. 1999.
Korzybski, Alfred. Science and Sanity: An Introduction to Non-Aristotelian Systems and General Semantics. Institute of General Semantics. 1995.
Kramer, Samuel Noah, & Maier, John, Myths of Enki, the Crafty God, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989.
Lewis-Williams, David. The Mind in the Cave: Consciousness and the Origins of Art. Thames and Hudson. 2002.
Rand McNally. Atlas of World History. Reed International Books, Ltd. 1995.