"In language is Life and Death. -- Ancient Hawaiian proverb
"It's vital to learn to replace the expression 'it has happened' for 'it has happened because it was my will'". -- Nietzsche
"Playing back recordings of an accident can produce another accident. -- William Burroughs
"We should not impose the values or vocabulary of the past species upon the new Cybernetic Culture." -- Timothy Leary/Eric Gullichsen, Twenty-Two Alternatives to Involuntary Death
"'Reality' is the temporary resultant of continuous struggles between rival gangs of programmers." -- Robert Anton Wilson
"For those who would take the short and dangerous path to Chaoist Anti-Ontology, nothing has being. Adjust your mind; you have a serious fault in the linguistic programs which structure your thought, which can halve your effective intelligence. -- Peter Carroll, Psybermagick, p. 94.
"Known to historians as 'quaint spelling'. In earlier times, persons of great temporal power did not feel constrained to 'common' (being of noble birth) usage, and commanded the language to their semantic whims. As a matter of fact, there really was no such thing as 'correct spelling' prior to the Puritan era, who quite rightly, we're sure, felt the language of God's people ought to be made as uniform and bland as his chosen people. Nearly all the original dictionaries were compiled by Puritan or Calvinist zealots.
"For centuries, language has contained subtle value judgements and biases against free-thinking Individuals, especially those with polytheistic or pagan beliefs. In TOPY, the attempt is being made to re-appropriate the language by deliberately mis-spelling and changing the meaning and connotation of words into a language more in tune with our values. In so doing, we symbolically declare war on societal conditioning."
-- taken from D.O.P.Y., a Dictionary ov Psychick Youth
This is an account/mindmap/brainstorm on how language is the programming tool for reality.
Or some notes on how the world works.
To break the spell is to break the Seal and reemerge as Old Ones, the chaotic Lords of Things whose magick was once tried to be rendered uneffective with a spell of ignorance, lies, monotheism and atheism.
The first task of a Magician is to break free from the consensual reality (the "cleaning of the alchemical lab"). Take a look at your fellow travelers in the subway and pity them, for they are condemned by society to spend their lives under uniforms and masks they weren't given any opportunity to chose.
This was done through verbal conditioning. It were the commanding cries heard during infancy; more than the meaning of the words, it were the emotionally charged tones in which they were given.
In order to create an alternate, freer reality, we need first to shake the grip of these mantras over our psyche, and then redefine language in a more usable way.
This is a call to learn and make the Call, the post-logical sound that would resonate throughout the speechsphere.
This is a call a spell a roar a growl a rune to open Vissuddha.
Ghettos and occultists share the use of slangs with elites and technicians. The magickal occulture has pursued the Great Work by enchanting, writing and conferring in Enochian, Ouranic Barbaric, E-prime, Coumlanguage and dozens more hidden tongues.
As magicians know, by calling things in a unique way one acquires power over them; that's the reason for diminutives, nicks, and the important nouns over which control is desirable like those related to sex, money, and hate (which fits what's listed as the 3 reasons for which someone would first approach magick: to get laid, to get rich, to get even).
Slang may well develop from diminutives, monosyllables and glossolalia, - directly inspired gnostic speech usually under the influence of entheogens - the kind of Hive Language practised by segregated communities in need of maintaining a lively, private communication and celebrate their common identity.
The need for secrecy - after all, secret societies have been behind most political changes throughout history - is now expressed in the use of passwords and passphrases, as in PGP. On the other claw, R.A. Wilson casts in his Illuminati Papers this spell against secrecy: "Intelligence depends on rapid exchange of signals, unfortunately for conspirators, so the hoarding of signals ('Top Secret', 'For Your Eyes Only', etc.) and the broadcasting of false signals (the politics of lying) reduce the IQ of those who are doing it even more catastrophically than the general intelligence of the whole society."
It's not secrecy, but precision, however, the reason behind scientific slang, and magick is becoming undistinguishable from science and technology. Contemporary magick, aka chaoism, as a path devoid of beliefs and ultimate truths, is attempting to work with the word-virus itself, and to produce its cure: random belief and transmogrification.
The suppression of "essences" and "truths", so dear to former occultists, sometimes expressed in the use of e-prime ("English without the 'is' of identity"), closely reflects the ontological doubt that today shakes the "traditional" institutions and breaks the physical frontiers in the body mutated with the use of piercings or tattoos.
Here's a mind dis-ease expressed through the pierced tongue, the fractured speech and the loaded needle, as atoms are converted into bits (yeah the atomic war has been waged, and lost!) by the digital media and rock-solid institutions are replaced by networked relationships in a state of flux.
It was some years ago when we first jumped in surprise at someone who would start talking next to us, apparently to none while we went walking down the street. It seemed just an explosive increase in the percentage of crazy folks.
But it was only the arrival of cell phones.
Such arrival had certainly been preceded by the public phone booths, and all those anxious cries about accidents and being lost and having no more coins left to continue the call.
It's only that now it's all too common to hear people answering their portable devices and describing where they are and where they're going. Here is where the social customs drive the private into the public, when the called party feels obliged to express hir innermost feelings of lust or rage, or to waste the expensive connection inquiring "and ... what were you going to tell me?", or to reply to every incoming call with "Good morning, this is Gates Immobiliaries" as if they were sitting at their office.
A related and interesting phenomenon occurs in the e-mailing lists, where many flame wars mean the placement of private facts into the public knowledge, for the amusement of the community gathered around that list.
Does the opposite phenomenon happen? Oh yes it does. The "whisper" technique from chat rooms extends to mailing lists when one subscriber privately mails another, thus commencing a private relationship.
Just when the System had pushed sane humans into the padded cells called homes as the ultimate isolation measure, termed "security" and the last alarm had been installed in the last corner of the house, behold! that we meet again in the public place, anonymous, free and fast, rapidly evolving from the unknown to the just-known.
Exactly where the brick and mortar wall encloses this alarmed space where virtual life is possible, quick notes of hate and love appear, now as always since the invention of writing: scribbled insults, names within hearts, inscribed everywhere from the school bench to the historic ruins.
More elaborated urban sigils become the encoding for the various tribal memes: flame-like letters for metalheads, convoluted tags for the hip-hop culture (and football, the new male religion on its own right).
At the mass-mediatic level, the city is overflowed with spells to further the milking of the human cattle: ads in the subway, added by muzak, attack the isolated passenger in the middle of hir business life and continue to do so in the stairs that take hir into street: warnings of death, sickness, old age, and pain, advertising their cheap, quick fixes to be paid in installments for the rest of their lives, cast their sickening shadows over the eyes and minds that avoid looking at the living flesh - you don't stare at people because you stare at the ads.
Deeper into business (probably to pay the installments), our fellow passenger is not relieved from muzak, as the sonic curse will follow hir into the workplace and also into hir "home" via radios, TV sets and similar mind-numbing, thought-disturbing devices, even when hir visual field is devoted to other functions.
Genesis P-Orridge writes about Muzak: "The initial observation was that production is inclined to slump in mid- morning and afternoon. Wyatt and Langon established 4 work-curves from utter fatigue to a subtler decline that occurs when the work is distasteful and the operative is severely bored. Dan O'Neill decided this monotony and its effects would be relieved by functional music, i.e., boring work is made less boring by boring music" (quote taken from Esoterrorist).
Thus the Machine regurgitates magickal techniques and aided by unidirectional technology uses them for controlling the slaves, the beta-wave populace that "lives" in a zombified state to "vote", breed, and consume.
But in the uncontrolled space of pure technological creation, the Net appeared.
And we're meta-medial now: we're the Web, humankind's nervous system, learning to think together in turbo medieval anonymity and copyright-free collaboration.
We're sharing files and techniques, we're using the search engines as Oracles for words received through channeling, invo and evocation, meditation, dreams; we're navigating hyperlinks as an initiatory trip ... camouflaging "forbidden" info into graciously lent kilo and megabytes of server space that are moved overnight when the contents have been already spread.
And microcosmic hyperlinks are drawn as mindmaps too while surfing the ten thousand sites of the world; ideas multiply following the intricate virosic patterns of Memetics / Webetics with the Web as host.
What the anxious merchants with their mass-mailing spam campaigns in their gigantic efforts for turning the Web into what's not, unidirectional -- "wasn't the TV such a great hope when it was born, too? and look at it now!"-- won't dream is that the 'net is our tool to build neocultural networks, "us" being operationally defined as the illustrated contemporary humans who would rather try a chance to be alive than being told how to fake it.
Once the official, mainstream "culture" of operas and museums proved dead, it was quickly replaced in the dying century by popular culture, which went from the masses' folklore to the media, and back to the masses through technology.
Fed up of the junk food for thought that the mass media sold in their corporate mind-restaurants, the human spirit ejaculated the oonosphere/Internet all over the globe, supported by the personal computer. Technology, then, revealed itself as the real new culture, strong enough to demonstrate that the only way to freedom is bi-directional.
Anyone that might have followed Grant Morrison's comic The Invisibles would be able to recognize the mass-media as the corrupted Universe B macrocosm, with the peer-to-peer interaction as the antidote, a subversive emerging Universe A, in the process of separating itself from B. The point of course being mind control, whether over one's own mind, or having one's mind controlled by others. No predictions can be made for a future in which every human thinks for hirself! The critical mass theory stated that such point would be reached when a 11% of the population had evolved; such point is said to have been reached some years ago.
The vagina through which cyberspace was ejected into existence was none other than Spaceship Gaia's Lab: the United States of America. There, the English language had already demonstrated that it can take into itself any accent in the planet and still be understood, thus becoming the new lingua franca after the golden ages of French and, earlier still, Latin.
From there - where every invention and novelty in the last decades of the now past century has been massively tested, from techno house to laser surgery to TV shows and past life regressions - language has changed local dialects all around the world through soap operas, movie subtitles, tech manuals, and business and tourism booklets, thus filing away the local differences in the grinding stone of standardization.
Is in the darkened lab of cinemas where the power of medial spells can be immediately observed in action; either dubbed or subtitled, movies influence behavior as is apparent from the creation of Fight Clubs, the arty spectators of The Idiots exploring a retarded behavior after seen the Danish film, paranoia after The Matrix, expansive cosmic feelings after Star Wars, etc. A movie could well be rated in a sociological scale by how much our subjective world seems altered when exiting the cinema...
Anyway, the strongest argument in favor of language homogeinization continues to be technology -- devoid from concerns other than necessity -- not entertainment. Machines and their manuals are exported, received and used faster than any translator would even open their huge dictionaries; it's the technicians in charge of running the machine who would leaf through a brief glossary, understand what's there to be understood, and then opt for the easier, more literal translation and use directly in English most of the terms involved.
Another and maybe closer example can be noticed in translation software (such as the popular automated translation offered by the search engines). Having only one meaning to offer for each input word, the new language created by such applications is poorer in shades and richer in neologisms.
Same as with movies, computer literacy trickles its ticks and themes into mainstream behavior. A new trend, noticeable in informal writing all over the chat rooms, IRC channels and mailing lists, and maybe established by computer programmers, is that of writing only in small case (of course, it also may simply be a result of using a keyboard instead of handwriting, since pressing the Shift key is an extra effort).
Anyway, two literacies globally define today who is allowed to earn higher wages, travel, and stay up-to-date with hir time: English and computing. They are no longer the domain of illustrated elites (as English was in non-English speaking countries until the '80s), but are increasingly being required for applying even to data-entry level jobs.
When I first contacted digital 3D as a game player some 9 years ago, I began to see "real reality" the way the games depict it.
I was thinking of my movements in terms of coordinates and instructions: turn right, open door, walk left, ascend stairs. Now that I'm approaching 3D modeling, when I left the screen I admire the "realism" in the solids around me...
It simply liberates my eyes from the political charge on everything they perceive (car: status symbol; urban tree: mocking Nature; clothes: gender slavery and sexual repression, etc.), giving back to the objects in the world the sensuality of its pure material condition.
This is, then, how the path from reality to language is tread back and forth: programming is language, and language is programming. All of the Internet, all of the computers world, relies on language, on things written, on meaningfully ordered letters, numbers and other symbols. Not only that: every human action is programmed within the realm of language. Every agreement, whether oral or written, programs humans for a willed future.
Every-thing we can think of has a name. Each action we perform relates (us) to this named world. All programming variables have a correlate in the macrocosmic human environment, such as waiting times, dress codes, speech codes and so on.
In stressful situations, we tend to repeat the exact tones, if not the words, we were taught, encoded, to obey. Control mechanisms also work at a very primal level when using a person's name: if you want to scold them in a "civilized" manner, you'll begin your verbal punishment by pronouncing hir first Name.
And then you have translation. The code is converted to 0s and 1s and makes a program run, the words leave a chemical imprint in the brain and are converted into actions and behavior patterns.
Thus, both self-scripting and world-scripting get done through language. But the power of words to build worlds is most evident in Magick, which has always been related to the mouth: vocal sound, slang, Ouranic Barbaric; spell. Pete Carrroll writes that Grimoire derives from Grammar and that the old word for magick, Grammarye, denoted conjurations with written and/or verbal spells.
But the magician's trick for decoding the world's salivary sap and make hir programs run is precisely Gnosis, the shamanic device for stopping mind's internal dialogue.
For ages, mages have experimented with all kinds of word manipulations, applying sympathetic techniques such as if everybody else writes from left to right in "linear time" or Consensual Reality, then writing from right to left could undo time and swim upwards the river of the mundane.
The occult has also directly enjoyed this proximity to the technological side, examples are seen in astrological software or gematria been done through calculators.
The foundations are laid, I hope, to start developing tech magick, combining trance states and appliances, sorcery and physics ... let us see some genetically engineered bacteria with an embedded java/python code created under astrological and gematric parameters.
While magick can be considered the ultimate countercultural fightback of all times, it also contained/contains its own inner doer/thinker dichotomies or status differences amongst practitioners: Nicholas Hall writes in his "Chaos and Sorcery": A witch's bottle was usually constructed by a female, men were for the most part too busy establishing a more intellectual approach to magick and writing their grimoires...
Personally, I'm allergic to sexism. Now I have plenty of room for contemplation; I live alone so I don't have to constantly fight the social usage of gender adjectives and pronouns on me, but I enjoy war every time I'm on the street.
When you get your name genderized (either because you have a gender-specific name like Mary or Tom, or because your name is preceded by a genderizing title), most of your counterparts in dialogue will immediately be forced by their conditioning to thinkfeel: "oh, it's just a woman!". I feel that it takes a long time and very hard work to get rid of prejudices, so I feel diminished when I have to use a gender title like Ms., Soror or whatever.
I was previously feeling so safe and free when surfing the Net and relating to people in the mailing lists gender-free, with a name like Aloas, that lets nobody know what type of body do I have. I'm sure that the person who invented this frater/soror/coyote/kali thing was a man (or two). Men are simply blind as to how sexual segregation manifests, simply because they're not women (I know this first hand: you have to educate men to see how the world segregates us women, because they just can't see it until it's undeniably shown to them).
Something I find particularly unpleasant in English is the fact that its main words for our gender are the male noun with an aggregate: unlike in Spanish, where you have hombre/mujer, each with its unique root, in English you have man/wo-man; not macho/hembra, but male/fe-male. Just like the attached topknot that shows gender in cartoons' heads; or the attached long hair and skirt in the graphic indicating where are the women's restrooms.
I'd like to hear and see languages emerge full of ambiguities, using * or / where before were references to the feminine and masculine.
Another solution: to use a language where gender terms are employed only when no self-conflict arises; i.e., if I think that what I'm saying could segregate me as a woman, I'd use an ambiguous form. If I think that what I'm saying relates more to the male aspect of my personality, I'd use a male form, etc.
There's much work left to do: to evolve from the Politically Correct hishi/hir to shihi to genderstruction. I want a world where gender is no longer of public knowledge, unless you face the person or better still, until you stare at that person's genitals. No differentiated names, no differentiated clothing, no differentiated pronouns!
So the call for you practical, results-oriented Chaotes is: create your own worlds through your words in the media (Don Webb says that the chaostar is a symbol for the medial level). If you feel oppressed by reality, change it from its root: consensus, communication, language.
If you read a comic by Neil Gaiman (included in his Sandman series), The story of a thousand cats, I'm talking of massive visualization here. And that shared visualization is Internet, the morphogenetic field, the Shaper, the Beast, N'Aton, oonosphere, the Genius weaving our dreams: called Internet at the time, it's the alchemic egg.
So what tools do we have, other than what Israel Regardie calls "psychoanalysis", being it the conscious, objective, verbal revision of the personal history? Well, logoludics!
In his Uncle Setnakt's Essential Guide to the Left Hand Path, Don Webb offers a method for taking a peek into your greater mind, allowing the magickal grammarye to flow freely, without thinking first. Setnakt's Letterism uses the principle of rapid association to a letter from the child's game "Bachillerato": first a grill is drawn on paper or blackboard and then someone says a letter, and all participants have to compete for completing first a row with different words (an animal, a country, a name, etc. - it's a bit similar to Outburst, I think) beginning with that letter.
If the above is a fusion method for combating the word-virus, the fission method would be that proposed by Gysin and Burroughs. Cutup is called their cure, and it gave us scissors to cut in pieces everything we read and hear and see: the magician's sword is now a pair of scissors, to fight against the demons of society's cruel global concentration camp.
A recommended visualization: imagine the horizon line stretching out into a tree. Make of that tree, grown in a purely human space, our shared orientation, our next place to go, our common purpose. Then Gaia the egg may crack and the winged serpent/tree will emerge: a new dimension.
The conscious alteration and subversion of the written word and its spitting back into the mass media through the artifacts of "culture": magazines, "art", books and the Net, the wide world of web publishing and public communication is increasingly becoming our primary tool for effecting change both a local and a global level, and for forcing wide open the chaos gates for all demons to enter this dimension and immanentize the Eschaton once and for all, damn it.