Thursday, September 30, 2010

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Providence Experiments


STILL STRUGGLING TO “MAKE IT” AS AN ARTIST, ASTRONAUT, ACTOR, WRITER OR EL PRESIDENTE? 
FEELING BLOCKED? 
DISILLUSIONED? 
WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? 
THE PROVIDENCE EXPERIMENTS HAVE ARRIVED. 

“Providence is always on the side of the last reserve” Napoleon Bonaparte 

WHAT ARE THE PROVIDENCE EXPERIMENTS? 

The Providence Experiments are a unique series of workshops and events that fuse experimentation, visualisation, ritual, psychological intervention and immersive game. Test subjects will be thrust into bizarre events that offer the willing participant the opportunity to undergo a challenging yet positive artistic transformation. 

Over one lunar calendar month, you will receive spontaneous transmissions, puzzles, choices and oddities that may pervade any and every part of your life. Prepare your mind for anything. 

This experience will be designed specifically for YOU. Perception of self and reality will constantly be challenged. We will initiate you into in a unique journey where you are the hero or villain in your own story.

The aim of the Providence Experiments is to unleash your subconscious creative potential while offering an amazing, unprecedented experience unlike anything you’ve likely participated in before. 

The Providence Experiments will consist of one set session per week in Central London over five weeks, starting Friday 5th November. Specialised directions to each venue will be transmitted 5 days before each session. 

Warning: The Providence Experiments will not be confined to the five stated sessions. Active engagement and full participation is vital and absolutely necessary. 

WHO CREATES THE PROVIDENCE EXPERIMENTS? 

YOU and your subconscious will be the true playing ground for the game. However, this experience will be facilitated by FoolishPeople, a group that create immersive occult events using their developed practice Theatre of Manifestation. They will be aided with media and profiling consultation provided by Mythos Media, a team assembled to create modern myths. 

HOW DO I SIGN UP? 

Prospective applicants must e-mail providence(at)weaponized.net immediately. Do it now: the number of places are extremely limited. If you receive an application form, you are lucky enough to have passed Phase I and are on your way to taking your place within Test Bed One. 

DATES 

Friday November 5th 
Sunday November 14th 
Sunday November 21st 
Friday November 26th 
Sunday December 5th 

BOOKING PRICE

Early booking discount: £150 (£30 per week) Available until 17th October Standard booking: £200 (£40 per week) Available from 18th October 

Friday, September 24, 2010

Fallen Nation - Complete Overhaul



Just a brief announcement. Fallen Nation: Babylon Burning has been put on hold on Amazon soon as it updates. The rewrite I'm doing should will blow it out of the water.

This is to pave the way for an entire transmedia series based around the Fallen Nation world/mythology. No more on that, though. There's work to do.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

HoodooEngine Steaming Ahead


We've launched www.hoodooengine.com.

"HoodooEngine is a ghastly noise machine, incessantly bearing down on its passengers with locomotive force—powered by the steam of your sweat and hellbent on mutual annihilation."

EgoWhore is now officially released, available in our store as CD, direct download, and soon through major digital distro sources such as iTunes, emusic, Napster, Amazon MP3, etc. (There's a small snafu with the Bandcamp page and track listing. We're trying to get that fixed.)

I'll be keeping the HoodooEngine news slight on this blog from here on out, aside from album releases and so on- moving the rest over to the official site. Sign up, enjoy the music.

If you're press, DJ, a promoter, or so on, please get in touch.

We're going to keep on promoting this album, and working on our second album. Meanwhile, I've got the Immanence of Myth and two novels to get on.... Anyone want to send loose women or amphetamines? I'm clearly going to need them. (And if you are a loose woman bearing it, all the better. Or less loose women bearing tequila cause, I don't know about you, but personally, a bottle of good tequila is usually all it takes to...) Yeah. Enjoy the music.
EDIT: Here's the next album!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Fallen Nation - Announcement


After much consideration, and even more planning, I have decided that I am going to begin an enormous undertaking over the next year. This will be to try to create Fallen Nation as the transmedia project I initially planned for it to be.

I'm not going to go into all of what this may mean in the future at this point. But a part of this plan involved re-conceiving the novel that started this project.

I will be pulling the original version of Fallen Nation: Babylon Burning, and completely, I mean completely, re-writing it. This will be based more heavily on the film script that Jason Stackhouse and I developed, as I think it cuts more directly to the heart of this project. It will be, all going well, just the first of several projects based within the same general world and myth. These projects will span several mediums.

In the meantime, if you are interested in the original version of the book, and haven't already, I suggest you pick it up soon.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Karmic Fallacy





I wanted to jot down some thoughts I've had about karma. There are several expressions of the idea of karma, but there are only two I'd like to talk about.

The first is what I'd call the "new age" interpretation. This has a distinctly ethical bent to it, and in generalized form it runs something like this: "it may take a while, but good people and good deeds get good results, and bad people get theirs." It is used on the one hand as consolation for those who feel they have done well, and have been poorly rewarded (which is not all that dissimilar from the idea of heaven as the "palace in the sky," where the just are rewarded), and on the other as a moral incentive to avoid "bad" actions. 

The second is a version of the Hindu concept of karma, which ties directly into their premise of reincarnation. In fact, it would seem that karma is simply a logical necessity created by the theory of reincarnation. In that view, all creatures, from ants to dogs to humans to the Gods themselves, are a part of a wheel of life, and those who behave "rightly" ascend, and those who behave "wrongly" descend. There is a myth around their god Indra which Joseph Campbell relates, wherein Indra proclaims, in a burst of Hubris "What a good boy am I." A boy then enters his court, a manifestation of Brahman (though Indra does not know this), who, after a brief, enigmatic conversation, points to a line of marching ants and says "former Indras all." In other words, it is through ego and conceit that even the Gods can fall from Godhood to the life of an ant.

This perspective of karma also supports, or is supported by, the cultural institution of castes. One is born into a caste through one's karma. This gives it a sense of "rightness" and order that it could not otherwise have.

Both of these views of karma are, like most myths, fallacious. However, the real question is not whether they are true in that rather narrow sense, but instead if they are useful. 

I would propose that, though they have the potential to be useful, they have a greater potential to be harmful. In the first case, we have a pretty empty-headed idea about morality that simply does not play out in reality. Those who behave in what many of us would consider to be good ways are punished mercilessly by life, and many greedy sociopaths do quite well. This karmic argument says that, at some point, the wheels will turn and one day justice will be served. However, for someone who believes, as I do, that our consciousness is all we have, and that there is no inherent justice or ethical system coded into reality, then this amounts to little more than fooling ones self. I can't believe that lying to ones self is ever the best course of action. Additionally, it is a form of mental sleight of hand that stops working when you realize the mechanism actually at work. 

One thing that both views hold in common is the idea that our actions and beliefs have an inherent ethical quality, which is not only dictated from outside, but which has repurcussions on the future. This requires a few rather improbable things to be the case. First, there must be a natural moral ground that supersedes human and cultural boundaries. Second, there must be something in reality that "watches for" the ethical dimension of our actions, so that they might be rewarded or punished. In other words, both have an implicit requirement for a moral force within the universe. 

Though it is impossible to know any such things for certain, I have never seen anything in my time on Earth nor all my thinking on the subject that would lead me to conclusion that there is such a thing. But let's presume that there is. If so, the belief in karma must actually lead us to some further untenable and even immoral conclusions if we actually think them through.

For instance, the second view of karma, which I have rather unfairly characterized as the "Hindu view," depends on a heirarchy of being. Circles, as I said, rotating within circles. What could an ant possibly do that would allow it to ascend to a "higher" level within this wheel? What is a "good ant"? At the level of dog, what defines a god as "good" or "bad" save the whims of its master and keeper? This provides a layer of what could be called the imposition of Monarchy: the good derives from the will of kings. Furthermore, what an anthro-centric view of the world, to think that the highest manifestation possible for animals, save Godhood, is humanity! 

As a final example, consider that both of these views, and especially the first, holds within it the idea that we are at the whim of our karma. If many bad things happen to someone, it arouses suspicion in others. People may say, "your karma is bad," or even, if it persists, "you are cursed." They seem to have lost sight of the statistical fact that if you toss a coin 500 times and get heads every time, the probability of heads on the 501st toss is still 50/50. The true fact of life, from all I can tell, is best expressed in the saying "shit happens." Shit just happens. Karma does not determine it, and we do not have control over most of the things that happen to us, or as a result of our actions. We never have a handle on all the variables at work when we make decisions. 

There are some who hold a view not only of karma, but also that, counterbalancing that, there is the idea that everything that happens to us "happens for a reason." Or perhaps it is willed by some "higher self." I mention this belief structure because it is tied into the new age interpretation of karma. There is a highly immoral kernal to this train of thought, if it is thought through. (At least from my personal sense of morality, which is in my opinion, the only sense in which morals make sense.) 

Consider that someone suffers the experience of being raped. Now, piled upon that, if they hold this view, is the idea that somehow they - or some force in the universe, be it karma or their own "higher self" - willed this upon them for the sake of transformation, perhaps. What an awful thing to think. In other words, taking this view to its extreme, that individual raped themselves. I had a conversation with a friend about this recently where I joked that I should go around Philly pistol-whipping people and screaming "WHY ARE YOU HITTING YOURSELF?!" 

Now, do not misunderstand. I have often expressed the idea that through negative experiences we can experience great transformation. This is true. But it is a method of interpreting the painful and chaotic in our lives and rendering it sensible in a way which might be beneficial. Blaming the victim for the crime does no such thing. 

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Living in Stories - Planetshifter Interview



Stories pass through our lives, tying us together with intimate bonds of shared understanding. A framework of words and ideas provides the impetus for our actions. In this lies one of the strongest calls to mythology. In myth the stories we live every day take on universal significance.

To change a culture one must change the cultural myths, and this must be done on an individual level. Multi-media artist, writer, and theorist James Curcio’s new anthology, Immanence of Myth, seeks to delve deeper into what myth is, how it remains relevant today and how we can live meaningfully through our understanding of it.

With Immanence of Myth, Curcio has collected the thoughts of contemporary artists, writers, theorists and creatives to address a more active understanding of the mythological process and to begin looking at how the process of active myth making can be a powerful tool for change.

Read Interview

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Murder The World


egowhore-cover
Originally uploaded by agent139
A quick announcement for those that'd been following the production (and podcasts) tied to Murder The World:

We will be releasing that material as our second album, "Murder The World," as soon as it is ready. In the meantime, EgoWhore should be available through most major online retail services within the next month. I'll keep you posted.

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