John CAGE "In a Landscape" (1948)
From “In a Landscape” (CD. Catalyst. 09026 61980 2. 1994). Piano solo performed by Stephen DRURY.
(Source : animus-inviolabilis)
Alain Daniélou – Le crépuscule du Kâlî-yuga (3:54)
Read by Catherine Michel. Unidentified music.
Broadcast on Radio Suisse Romande, Switzerland, 1985 [source]
Painting by Paul Lafolley – Kali Yuga, 1965, from artist’s website.
As descibed in the Vishnu Purânä, one of the 18 major Hindu religious texts, the Kâlî yuga or Dark Age, lasting from 1939 CE to 2442 CE, is the time of “the dissolution of the world, the decline of all things, and deterioration of mankind.” Read in the sound file are excerpts from the Vishnu Purânä, Book VI, Chapter 1, as translated in French by Alain Daniélou in his book La Fantaisie des Dieux et l’Aventure Humaine, éditions du Rocher, 1985 ; reissued as Le Destin du Monde d’après la Tradition Shivaïte, Albin Michel, 1992 [full English text of book VI, ch.1 here]. Here is the transcript of the sound file above:
Ce sont les plus bas instincts qui stimulent les hommes du Kali Yugä. Ils choisissent de préférence les idées fausses. Ils n’hésitent pas à persécuter les sages. L’envie les tourmente. La négligence, la maladie, la faim, la peur se répandent. Il y aura de graves sécheresses. Les différentes régions des pays s’opposent les unes aux autres.
Beaucoup périront. Le nombre des princes et des agriculteurs décline graduellement. Les classes ouvrières veulent s’attribuer le pouvoir royal et partager le savoir, les repas et les lits des anciens princes. La plupart des nouveaux chefs est d’origine ouvrière.
On tuera les fœtus dans le ventre de leur mère et on assassinera les héros. Les Shudrä prétendront se comporter comme des Brahmanes et les prêtres comme des ouvriers.
La stabilité et l’équilibre des quatre classes de la société et des quatre âges de la vie disparaîtront partout. La terre produira beaucoup dans certains lieux et trop peu dans d’autres.
De la nourriture déjà cuite sera mise en vente. Les livres sacrés seront vendus aux coins des rues. Le dieu des nuages sera incohérent dans la distribution des pluies.
La dégradation des vertus et la censure des puritains hypocrites et moralisateurs caractérisent la période de la fin du Kali. Il n’y aura plus de rois. La richesse et les moissons diminueront. Des groupes de bandits s’organiseront dans les villes et les campagnes. L’eau manquera et les fruits seront peu abondants.
Beaucoup d’enfants naîtront dont l’espérance de vie ne dépasse pas seize ans. Des aventuriers prendront l’apparence de moines avec la tête rasée et des vêtements orangés, des chapelets autour du cou. On volera des stocks de blé. Les voleurs voleront les voleurs. Les gens deviendront inactifs, léthargiques et sans but. Les maladies, les rats et les substances nocives les tourmenteront.
Des gens affligés par la faim et la peur se réfugieront dans des « abris souterrains ».
Les hommes ne chercheront qu’à gagner de l’argent, les plus riches détiendront le pouvoir. Les gens sans ressources seront leurs esclaves.
Les pauvres se feront une gloire de leur pauvreté et les femmes de la beauté de leurs cheveux.
Dans le Kali Yugä les hommes sont sans vertus, sans pureté, sans pudeur, et connaîtront de grands malheurs.
Rapsodia Satanica, a masterpiece of Italian silent cinema, features film diva Lyda Borelli. She stars as the narcissistic Alba d’Oltrevita, a woman who makes a Faustian pact with the devil in exchange for the promise of eternal youth and the worldly pleasures it unlocks. The most persistent themes punctuating the film are Alba’s narcissism and her sensual manipulation of a thin, diaphanous veil in scenes of seduction, reflection and melancholy. Alba’s hands it is more introspective and eerie than seductive. It evokes the craze for exotic dances (inspired by Isadora Duncan) that swept the stage and screen at the turn of the Century.
Kissa Kouprine in Henri d’Ursel short film “La perle”
This dreamlike film is a cinematic poem.
Brion Gysin/William S. Burroughs
The Raising of Abramelin in Marrakesh
It was at the Hotel Toulousain in Marrakesh in the 1960s that William Burroughs, Brion Gysin, and Mikey Portman attempted to raise the spirit of Abramelin the Mage. No record was left, and there are only a very few references to this episode — Christopher Gibbs, for example, mentions the invoking of “the Abramelan demon” by the three men, some time during the hippie “Marrakesh Express” years. Terry Wilson, a close friend of Brion Gysin, also knew Portman, and there is no doubt that the Magical Working took place. Was the operation successful? Well, they apparently raised something… The ritual was a continuation by other means of the Third Mind project and the “psychedelic summer” of 1961, reviving the “fighting spirits” and dangerous psychic currents which the three had experienced in the course of taking psilocybin in Morocco. The ceremonial invocation for the Raising of Abramelin requires an oil made from aromatic plants, adapted from the Jewish anointing oil of the Tanakh, and it was almost certainly an Aleister Crowley recipe which they used — Portman would become an absolute Crowley fanatic and it’s possible that the seeds of this fascination had been sown in his teens. Crowley’s recipe is in fact a corruption based upon MacGregor Mathers’ mistranslation of the medieval grimoire — in the mixture of Cinnamon, Myrrh, Galangal, and Olive Oil, the Galangal should actually have been Calamus. But no matter, other ingredients were certainly used — majoun, kif, hallucinogens, and alcohol — in an invocation designed to procure love and treasure, and to acquire extraordinary powers including the gifts of shapeshifting and invisibility, and the ability to raise an army of followers and to generate storms… Crowley wrote that if the oil is placed on the forehead “it should burn and thrill through the body with an intensity as of fire,” and Gysin may have had good reason to remember this when, desperately ill, he wrote his terrifying text “Fire” in 1977, and when he painted his great final work Calligraffiti of Fire in 1985, the year before his death. The rite requires a lengthy preparation and lasts for 18 months, but it may indeed have been understood by the three men as a continuation and attempted fulfilment of magical practices carried out in the Beat Hotel in the preceeding years. If Ian Sommerville was the “technical sergeant” of the Third Mind, Portman was almost certainly the medium for the Abremalin rite, and is referred to as such on a number of cut-up tapes. In 1961 Paul Bowles had expressed his disapproval of the supernatural obsessions of the “Tribe,” and the quest for magical, out-of-the body experiences, telling Burroughs “I am perfectly content to stay here with shit inside me” — words that would have resonance for Gysin 13 years later when he underwent a colostomy. Bowles insisted that he had “never had a psychic experience,” and Burroughs’ response is revealing of his own “supernatural superserious” attitude, his pragmatic view of the paranormal: “Nonsense, Paul, everyone has psychic experiences, it’s part of life.” A number of years after the “Marrakesh Working,” Terry Wilson visited Mikey Portman in Montague Square in London. Portman was whipping himself with a leather belt, shouting,”Victory to Aleister Crowley!” while decorators painted the walls and sashes, wearing ties beneath their overalls — they were, after all, decorators to the gentry… They regarded Portman’s antics with complete indifference. It’s the lesson eventually learned by all occult practitioners and takers of certain drugs — the results are one thing, the consequences quite another… What happened in the Beat Hotel? What was the Third Mind all about? Promulgation of the cut-up technique? Scissors? It was an occult operation — the conjuring of apparitions, the making and breaking of hermetic codes, the search for transcendence, alternate states of consciousness procured and explored through magical processes and hallucinogenic drugs, and through the systematic détournement of tape and film and stroboscope technology — treating the machine as a magical apparatus for the creation of new life out of chaos. It was a Dark Art Manifestation of psychic and psychotic manifestations — a throw of the bone dice, the weighing of words and the soul, negotiations in advance of the Great Devourer.
The Magical Squares of Abramelin the Mage
The Abramelin ritual was based on Aleister Crowley’s interpretation of S.L. MacGregor Mathers’ translation of the 15th century grimoire The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage by Abraham of Wurzburg, a work including talismanic Magical Squares which Gysin must have perused with some interest. Unlike traditional magical squares which employ numbers, these contain letters which may be read acrostically and acronymically. In “MAIAM,” for example, from the Hebrew and Arabic for “water,” used in the Abramelin ritual for acquiring the power to breathe and walk underwater, Gysin would have seen a perfect symmetrical echo of his own permutation of the Divine Tautology, “I AM THAT I AM.” The word “MAIAM” may be read forwards or backwards, and from the central I to the left or to the right. Gysin’s letter and word permutations operate magically in this way — he would take the last three letters of his first name, “ION,” and link these with the first three letters of Ian Sommerville’s name, “IAN,” and permutate these through letter combinations at the heart of which lies “I/AM” — merging Gysin and Sommerville’s identities in a “joint singularity.” Gysin used “the ION” in his name to signify an atom or molecule with a negative or positive electrical charge, and its letter-by-letter permutation into “I/AM” signifies the contact and conduction, the manifestation and recognition, created by sign and referent in the act of writing, while his positive/negative sense of his own identity is equally “charged.” Crucially, variant spellings of “IAN” are “EION’, “EON” and, yes, “ION” — magical connections for Gysin, the letters dancing and flipping from word to word like a Saul Bass film title sequence, or the opening graphics of an episode of Sergeant Bilko in which an out-of-line sloppy soldier suddenly wakes up and jumps into his allotted place… It’s a shifting alphabetic flow of emerging meanings and reflections, and it has its fun side too. Ian Sommerville was the “Technical Sergeant” of the Third Mind, and much more besides — a key collaborator and inventor, and he was affectionately referred to by Burroughs and Gysin as “Electrical Ian,” “Electric Ian,” and “Electronic Ian,” while in his writing Gysin called him “ION MILLION WATTS,” which actually plays upon “IAN WILLIAM WATSON,” hermetically referencing Sommerville, Burroughs, and Alan Watson. One Million Watts is the Megawatt, or MW, used in generators, aircraft carriers, locomotives, and submarines, and the term “megawatt electrical” is employed in the electricity industry where it is written as “Mwe,” a neat condensation of “Me” and “We” in the Gysin/Sommerville symbiosis. In The Last Museum, 1986, Sommerville disappears from the “Watt/What?” image, gone into the white electric light of the Dreamachine and the white light death tunnel — a million becomes a billion, a “light like a billion-watt bulb floated up through the bars on my window. The Great White Light! The Ineffable Light the Tibetans were always talking about.” “ION” also connects both Gysin and Sommerville with the Ionosphere — Udo Breger gave Gysin an article on the Ionosphere in the early 1980s which Gysin fixed in one of his notebooks, acknowledging Udo’s gift. Gysin was interested in those electrically-charged atoms and molecules surrounding the earth. Sommerville, through his training, knew about the significance of radio propagation in the Ionosphere, and how it was affected by free electrons, and so “ION” homages “IAN,” but the ionosphere also seems to have suggested a model for Gysin’s approach in his art — the play of positive/negative in the electrically charged particles of his script, the dynamics of his art moving through propulsion / attraction / splitting / recombination. The 1960s term,”going stratospheric” is rewritten by Gysin — he was going into his own sphere, the IONosphere. He treated the letters of his own name as positive ions and negative electrons — as in the “Unitled (Roller Poem)” of 1977 in which the “I” is not a stencilled letter at all but indicated, inferred by a short vertical grid line. We read this as a repeated “I,” but it is not a letter like the other letter forms in the piece, it is rudimentary, a vestigial stand-in, a cut — the presence of the “I” is read into this mark of absence, and the negative becomes charged with meaning, through a writing which Gysin equated with both electromagnetism and magical “energy signs.” Gysin’s magical grids, crucial for the workings of the Third Mind scrapbooks, transcend their apparent modernist format — they are magical squares, mystical nets for occult conjuration and projection, like the Taoist Talismans and diagrams which Gysin had studied and understood as forms of practical magic. Laszlo Legeza wrote that these talismans reveal “not a succession of separate moments, or an infinite number of separate ‘things’, but a seamless web of eternal change,” and Gysin’s own talismanic squares are sectional cuts through the continuum.
Obviously there are some issues with this article that previously I didn’t have time to address when I originally reblogged it. Outside of the scattered way the author connects the dots in an attempt to weave this connection between the Abramelin work, Burroughs, and Gysin, there are also some serious issues with the way he’s treating the Abramelin magical system as a whole.
First, and this is critical, Abramelin is not a demon. (I can hear some of my magician friends chuckling at this). He was purportedly an Egyptian magician, most likely Jewish, if he existed at all. The only reason we know anything about this character is because he was immortalized in the books written by Abraham of Worms (who we know a great deal more about). At the time Burroughs and Gysin were active the only translation of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage available in English was the translation from the French done by S.L. MacGregor Mathers (although they may have used the 1959 Ambelaine French version since that was also available).
This version of the work is broken into three main parts. The first serves as a kind of prelude giving the reader some autobiographical information. The second instructs the reader on how to attain the “Knowledge and Conversation” of their Holy Guardian Angel and how to use this relationship to demand obedience from various good and bad spirits and the Infernal Princes. And the third book deals with how to use this new found power performing various feats of sorcery.
The oil mentioned in this article is used to prepare the magician and his/her magical tools and temple for the Abramelin Working (The ritual for attaining the Knowledge and Conversation of the HGA). It is not used to summon Abramelin.
Also, despite what the author of this article may think there isn’t one ritual which is used to do all of the things described.
Bearing all this in mind, my guess is that Gysin/Burroughs most likely worked something from the third book, but they probably did it completely ass backwards from what the grimoire instructs. Within the context of this system that would’ve been a pretty risky thing to do. Abramelin is quite clear that the only way that these symbols (the squares) can be used is if you’ve attained the cooperation of the spirits associated with them. And often the spirits associated with a number of these squares are under the direct jurisdiction of one of the Infernal Princes or sub-Princes. So really the only safe way to use this system as written is to gain that connection with your Angel first, extract the obedience of the Princes, sub-Princes, and then the spirits beneath them. Only then will the squares produce the effects as advertised.
By way of example, if Burroughs wanted to improve his Invisible Man schtick he would be using the squares from Ch. 14 of the third book. In that section the only thing you’re really told is to place the “symbol” (the square) under your hat and it will render you invisible. (There are 12 squares based on the hours of the day and night. So my guess is you use one of the 12 based on the planetary hour. Assuming Bill wishes to appear invisible to some street merchant in the morning [2nd “hour” after sunrise], then he would use the Tzaphah square plopped under his trilby.) The problem here is that all of the squares related to this effect are under the jurisdiction of the sub-prince Magot so unless you have a good relationship with this spirit at best nothing will happen. At worst … well, who knows? But for Bill to be able to curry the favor of Magot in the Abramelin system he would first have to obtain his obedience under the power and authority of his HGA. Since there is no record of Burroughs or Gysin ever seriously working this system that’s something I seriously doubt they ever did.
Antonin Artaud - Pour en Finir avec le Jugement de dieu (1947)
He recorded Pour en Finir avec le Jugement de Dieu between 22 and 29 November 1947. This work was shelved by Wladimir Porché, the director of the French Radio, the day before its scheduled airing on 2 February 1948.
The performance was prohibited partially as a result of its scatological, anti-American, and anti-religious references and pronouncements, but also because of its general randomness, with a cacophony of xylophonic sounds mixed with various percussive elements.
Counterculture icon and essential figure in the early postwar Los Angeles art scene, Marjorie Cameron is the subject of an upcoming retrospective at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA). Cameron: Songs for the Witch Woman opens October 11 and will feature over 90 artworks and ephemeral artifacts, including correspondence with husband and occult mentor, the engineer and Thelemite Jack Parsons. “Her hallucinated vision, at the edge of surrealism and psychedelia embodies an aspect of modernity that deeply doubts and defies Cartesian logic at a moment in history when these values have shown their own limitations. Her work demonstrates that the space in the mind is without limit,” states MOCA Director Philippe Vergne. The exhibition offers a rare look at the life and work of a female occult practitioner — too frequently depicted as mere muse or lunatic, even though female-centric mysticism has existed for thousands of years. Here are a few other female occultists who deserve mention.
Test Dept - Paul Jamrozy’s exclusive mix for Industrial Soundtrack For The Urban Decay
Zev - Wipe Out - 1982
Test Dept - Gdansk Live London - 1982
The (Hypothetical) Prophets - Back to Siberia - 1980
Thomas Leer and Robert Rental - Attack Decay - 1979
Monte Cazazza - Kick that Habit Man - 1980
DAF - Kebabtraume - 1980
Plus instruments - Freundschaft - 1981
Einstürzende Neubauten - Autobahn - 1983
Laibach. Opus Dei 1 - Leben Heist Leben - 1987
Cabaret Voltaire - Expect Nothing - 1979
Art Deco (Budapest) - Furcsa Zene - 1983
Throbbing Gristle - Discipline (Live) - 1981
Forward Strategy Group - Industry and Empire - 2012
Perc - A New Brutality - 2012
Industrial Soundtrack For The Urban Decay traces the origins of Industrial music, taking you on a journey through the crumbling industrial cities of Europe to America’s thriving avant-garde scene.
Featuring Throbbing Gristle, Cabaret Voltaire, NON, SPK, Test Dept, Clock DVA, Re/Search - V Vale, Z’EV, Click Click, Sordide Sentimental, Hula, In The Nursery, Hands Production / Winterkälte, The Klinik / Dive, Ant Zen, Orphx and Prima Linea