Last month, I posted regarding the exhibition/book release in Norway for Dreadful Folktales from the Land of Nosferatu. The book is authored by Gina Sandulescu and illustrated by Costin Chioreanu, both of Romania. Costin has now posted a short movie about the exhibition, including interview clips with members of the bands Einherjer and Vulture Industries:
I first saw a Ouija board when I was a very little kid and was fascinated with the images on it. Several years after that, I got one for myself but, despite the enticing promises of the movies and religious folks, the spirits stayed silent for me. It turned out to be the most boring board game that I’ve ever played (even worse than Scrabble). Better pictures than Scrabble, though.
Back then, I dabbled with several other divination methods, including astrology, playing cards, and automatic writing. But I mostly spent time on dream recollection and recording of dreams, and I still find that to be the most effective way to get a glimpse past the surface of the physical world. Whether it’s gaining insight into a problem, meeting new people, visits with loved ones who have passed on, or exciting video game-type adventures, you really can’t beat the first person perspective of the dream world.
When it comes to other forms of divination, I’ve given a lot of thought to what I’m really looking for when I do it. When I was younger, I mostly thought of it as a prediction system, but I don’t think of it in that way any more. Obviously, the idea is to gain answers, but it seems a futile and negative past-time to look for definite answers about the future. At best, a divination method may give some general characteristics of what the future might hold, based on the present conditions, but expecting an exact answer negates the reality that the future might be malleable, at least to a degree.
What I found through practice is that divination can lead me to consider a direction or solution that I hadn’t considered before. An example came a few years ago: I had been waking up much too early in the mornings, unable to get back to sleep, so I was drained later in the day and felt kind of bad every day. At that time, I was reading the book Seeking the Spirit of The Book of Change by Master Zhongxian Wu, which offers a unique, shamanic system of the I Ching. I wasn’t putting it to practice, but decided to use it to get some insight into my sleep and health problems. The trigram that resulted was Kun (Earth). Although there are a few body parts that relate to Kun, I sensed that the spleen was the relevant focal point.
Apart from knowing that I had a spleen, I knew nothing else about it or its function. So I looked up information about it from a Traditional Chinese Medicine perspective, and learned that its function is related to the digestive system, and that cold, raw foods are not very good for it. The recommendation was to eat mostly hot foods. Now, a few months earlier, I had cut meat, dairy and eggs out of my diet, and had been eating a lot of raw fruits and vegetables, with relatively little cooked food. In light of this information about the health of the spleen, I began eating mostly hot food again. One night later, I began sleeping sounding throughout the night again and felt much better as a result.
I can’t say whether there was anything to the divination itself, or not, but I can say that, by doing it, I found a solution to the problem, a solution that I never would have thought of on my own. Despite my interest in matters of the unseen, I tend to be pretty skeptical about the paranormal, and quick to dismiss it as a factor when a physical, logical explanation is more likely. But I like results that work, and at least in that particular case, whether coincidence or not, there was indeed a working result. It doesn’t matter whether it’s “real” or not; it was real for me.
This is just a short update on the site, mostly in order to kick-start some renewal on adding to the content. When I began the blog several years ago, I had a certain vision for it that changed over time. As my own experiences morphed, backtracked and sidetracked, I either lost interest in doing more or didn’t really know what would be useful to add. I don’t see a real point in putting up content just to pad things out, as this is not a money-making blog (any ads you might see are put up by WordPress for their own revenue). I want the content to be something that I can stand behind, that is written well and that has the potential to be of value to the reader who comes across it.
I’m working on some new posts now, including some short reviews of favorite dark-flavored shopping sites and musical works, discussion of some liberty-related themes, and some essays on esoteric themes, among other topics. I might also move over a few of the old posts from the sister-site (grundfus), which I abandoned.
This is a short video plugging Costin Chioreanu’s exhibition for Dreadful Folktales from the Land of Nosferatu. The exhibition will be this weekend in Norway. And I really wish that I were in Norway right now.
Are not my days few? cease then, and let me alone, that I may take comfort a little, Before I go whence I shall not return, even to the land of darkness and the shadow of death; A land of darkness, as darkness itself; and of the shadow of death, without any order, and where the light is as darkness.
— Book of Job, 10:20-22 (King James Version)
Something light-hearted and a little late for Halloween, but here is a catchy children’s song in French featuring a bunch of skeletons:
And here is an odd cartoon video about a witch. I just have to say, From where is she pulling all of those ingredients for “la soupe”?
The following is not ground-breaking or deep by any means, but just a few observations that I have had about the general concepts of Light and Dark.
Most simply, Dark is described as an absence of Light, but does that then denote an inherent lack of anything that would be considered good or useful, whereas only “the Light” contains those good and useful things? Or is that merely a subjective overlay on what are, in fact, two complementary modes of operation that are each required in measure for life to exist?
Dark appears to be the base of the universe — when we view the cosmos, we see an endless expanse of dark, illuminated by spots of light created by suns and the suns’ reflections on other bodies. All of those suns could potentially be extinguished, and then only dark would exist. Yet the suns do exist, bringing forth the Light and Life that Dark cannot. Light is considered the active principle, the sudden blaze of activity and vibrancy that dispels Dark. So, what can Dark offer? Dark offers rest, and in a sense, we can think of Light and Dark as Radiance and Rest. Each exposes the other and is dependent on the other for survival. Are they mated? Do they give birth to each other? Do they devour one another? Perhaps each acts as the lifeblood of the other, hidden from view as its complement is in the forefront, yet pulsingly present nonetheless.
There is the obvious example of day and night as examples of Light and Dark and how we react to their modalities — we generally radiate activity during the day, and find our rest at night. But here we see something a little more obscure, that the modes of Light and Dark have some overlap. For the day shows the full picture, essentially a completeness in which we see it all, which could be seen as a kind of restful finality, while the night conceals what it yet contains, and in darkness it seethes with potential activity not-yet-born. This is what gives the Dark its mysterious, expectant quality. Dark and Light could thus also be termed Potential and Fulfillment.
During the day, we see the Sun’s light, but if we could observe the Sun and Earth from a great distance, we would see them embraced by the deep darkness of space. At night, we see darkness, and yet the Sun is still there, simply hidden from our vision by the Earth’s position. If you go into a completely dark room, where there is absolutely no light coming in, your eyes can still perceive bits of light before you; you can also be in an environment of overwhelming light and be temporarily blinded by it. I think that these examples illustrate that Light and Dark intersect continuously.
This essay was mostly an attempt to look beyond some of the usual words used for Light and Dark, such as Masculine/Feminine, Positive/Negative, and Good/Evil.
“The embrace of the Dark
Let it absorb your sorrows
–Darkdiver Grandahl, from the game Dark Souls II
The Infinite has no preferences.
It kisses both the darkness and
The light equally.
— Wu Hsin; from Aphorisms for Thirsty Fish, 2014; translator Roy Melvyn