What can films tell us about reality? In a deep-ranging dialogue drawing on the philosophical ideas of Martin Heidegger and looking at works by Terrence Malick, Wim Wenders, Stanley Kubrick, and other celebrated auteurs, two contemporary aesthetic thinkers reflect on the ways in which cinema brings us into a deeper, stranger relationship with the world, and our being in it.
Category: Culture (Transformation)
Our reading group on Gao Xingjian’s novel Soul Mountain begins a with a preliminary talk about his Nobel Prize acceptance essay, “The Case for Literature.”
We warmly welcome Darrell Hester (Mythos Collective) and Zachary Feder to Metapsychosis. Zachary, a writer and interlocutor on our forum at Infinite Conversations, contacted Darrell after seeing one of YouTube videos. In this talk, they cover everything from the cultural and psychological significance of the film to the esoteric meaning of vibranium. This is their first talk—with more to come, we hope!
We are powerful enough to burst through the artificial narrative-bubble of projections of power-over, and step together into the brisk air of the real world in all its complexity—painful, wonderful, multiplicitous. If, in that fine first inhalation of fresh air, we take in a deep moment of peace, we may hear the aspirations of all living things…
Perhaps there is a common ground for humankind that runs deeper than the machinations of a “power-over” mythology. Let us envision a more optimal design that meets more needs through respecting life’s innate capacity for intelligence and beauty.
Our human desires and emotions are oftentimes the “hooks” that memes use to attach to us. Once a meme has colonized us, it can profoundly guide our actions in the world. Therefore, we need to develop discernment to parse the beneficial memes from the malicious ones.
The power Trump commands is given by us—our attention, our deference, our minds, hearts, lives. In little ways, we can retake control of how and to what purposes we deploy our minds and spirits.
The common myths and meaning on which the U.S. was founded are breaking down, strained by the gnashing confrontation of incompatible, co-occurring narratives. This is long overdue and much needed. Yet powerful interests are trying to seize this shaky moment by trumpeting archaic, toxic narratives that reinforce and advance oppressive agendas in society.
This conversation series is concerned with how the monstrous, epic drama of our present-day reality is animated by subtle winds of power. We will explore creative strategies and discuss critical issues relating to developing our embodied consciousness as individuals/collectives—while cultivating more effectual ways to wield our often invisible yet immanent power.
To continue a policy of escape, retreat and regression is mutually assured destruction. We need to face, and learn from, our difficulties.
This essay series aims to penetrate to the roots of power and the shaping of material conditions through memes and through minds. I also discuss what is happening to us on individual and collective psychological levels, as we are forced to confront and grapple with certain popular myths about ourselves, our nation, and our global civilization.
We are always living in a story, always present in a myth. The key is to possess mindfulness towards worldviews and their presence in the awakened self—they are analytical frameworks of the mind that first allow the universe to be experienced in a specific manner and then formulated into pure, specific “understandings” about the nature of that universe.
The more deeply I’ve looked into heavy metal music and its use of imagery from the Book of Revelation, the more I discovered a very remarkable thing—that heavy metal music is doing the Book of Revelation. In its style, in its values, in its ethos, heavy metal is doing the Book of Revelation in musical form.
Floating from time period to time period amid spiritual and religious observances and contemporary soundscapes the drone remains consistently omnipresent, like the angel of death, hovering just out of reach yet connecting all things living and dead…
Chess is two wills locked not only in combat but also in cooperation. Players must together create the conditions allowing one to emerge triumphant—or not.
In his near-century of life, Murray confronted race by re-constructing American identity as omni-American—that out of many, we are one.
“We live in a world where the powerful deceive us. We know they lie. They know we know they lie. They don’t care. We say we care but we do nothing. And nothing ever changes.” BBC documentary by Adam Curtis.
In Western culture what is “feminine” has become associated over time with what is evil or immoral… This frightening view of the collective, akin to the archetype of the Terrible Mother, is what drives a lot of the global political and social narrative.
If new myths are born, re-tethered to something sacred, they must be brutally immediate, possessing unavoidable gravity, poignant, fragile, they must be anything but contrived, planned, and developed with the intention of bringing us the sacred. (She does not come to us on a platter. More likely, the platter will have your beating heart on it.)
Most of us have, in some form or another, if not a philosophy of time, at least a mythos of time.
I spoke with Conner Habib about his new course, “Banishing the World: Postmodern Philosophy and the Occult,” and learned about the surprising ways in which the most interesting and sophisticated philosophies coming out of humanities converge precisely with occult ideas.
“It would be hard to communicate to someone growing up today just how widespread was the fallout from the threat of the Atomic Bomb. From July 16th, 1945, when the first bomb was tested over the Jornada del Muerto Desert, its occult light had continued to throw shadows from each object. The danger was not abstract; it was imminent, and it changed our whole way of looking at the world.”
Dunbar proposed the limit of meaningful friendships is “150”—a far cry from our Facebook and Instagram network connections—but maybe it’s more complicated than that.
But the dark truth conveyed in the character of Barb finds its counterbalance in the incredible creative power that Stranger Things attributes to the Cosmic Child, a power which is also present in each of us.
Beneath the conceptual overlay, reality remains what it is: not an orderly network of humanly comestible ideas, but a turbid, ever-changing, symphonic, indefinable process of becoming that is accountable to neither the predilections of reason nor the strictures of logical grammar.
The show remains open, ambiguous to the end, and it is this quality that raises it above the normal run of generic entertainment to make of it something that defies genre, something genuinely weird.
This mix is all about the acclaimed Netflix series Stranger Things, and features J.F. Martel’s essay REALITY IS ANALOG, Phip plus the inaugural episode of Jeremy Johnson’s Electric Symposium podcast. Enjoy!
“In their re-imagination of the Ellison/Baraka opposition, direct challenges alternate with playful taunts. These exchanges have the energy of a competition but the warmth and generosity of a collaboration.”
This notion about our origins is the essential idea with which psychoanalysis grapples. Thought of in this way, psychoanalysis is nothing other than the meta-theorization of occult ideas.
What’s another word for melting pot? Cauldron.