Friday, March 30, 2012

Alien Hybrid Elected to Public Office

Simon Parkes, a British man recently elected to the Whitby town council in North Yorkshire, has a secret that he is finally sharing with the world - his mother was a space alien. In an interview for Metro, he recounts an episode in which the alien appeared to him as a baby and explained their strange relationship.

I was looking straight into its face. It enters my mind through my eyes and it sends a message down my optic nerve into my brain, saying “I am your real mother, I am your more important mother”.’

The extraterrestrial is said to have had huge eyes and tiny nostrils. Mr Parkes, 52, said another alien encounter occurred when he was three and had chicken pox. A 2.4m (8ft) ‘doctor’ dressed as a waiter offered to help after Mr Parkes’s mother left him at home, it is claimed.

Three years later his ‘real mother’ took him on board an alien craft.

Many contactees have stories like this, but this is the first case I know of in which a sitting politician has been so open about them. Granted, the Whitby town council is not exactly the national stage, but you never know - this could be the first phase of a takeover by genetically engineered alien hybrids of the strategically important town of North Yorkshire. Parkes further explains that his experiences with aliens compare quite favorably to those with his fellow Town Councillors.

He added: ‘I get more common sense out of the aliens than out of Scarborough town hall. The aliens are far more aware of stuff.’

Given the ongoing nature of politics, truer words were perhaps never spoken.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

2012 Cultists Await Alien Rescue

I suppose it was inevitable. Now that 2012 is here, stories of 2012 cultists are beginning to appear in the mainstream media. I've commented before on this blog regarding the ridiculousness of the 2012 apocalypse, including conversations Westerners have had with actual practitioners of the Mayan religion. Even though the big deal is supposed to be the end of the current cycle of the Mayan calendar, the Mayans generally have to explain that it has nothing to do with any sort of apocalypse and that Westerners who say so don't understand their beliefs. Anyway, Yahoo News reports today on a French commune made up of New Agers who believe that when the world ends on December 21, 2012, aliens will arrive and transport them to a new civilization. There's no mention in the article on whether or not these are supposed to be Mayan aliens.

An estimated 20,000 New Age believers who say the "upside down" mountain is home to aliens who will rescue them from an impending apocalypse have saturated a small French commune near the foot of the picturesque Pic de Bugarach.

The Independent reports the growing flock, whom locals refer to as "esoterics," believe the world will come to an end on Dec. 21, 2012. They also reportedly believe that the unique mountain is in fact home to a race of alien beings that will emerge to rescue the gathered humans and transport them to a new civilization.

Pic de Bugarach has long been famous because rock samples taken from its peak are actually older than points measured at lower elevations. Scientists say that is because when the 1,230-meter (4,040-foot) mountain erupted, its peak flipped upside down before crashing back down upon the mountain's base. The mountain is said to have played a role in inspiring everything from Jules Verne's "Journey to the Center of the Earth" to Steven Spielberg's "Close Encounters of the Third Kind."

It seems to me that this should be a simple critical thinking problem. If aliens really do live inside the mountain, why has no one outside the cult detected them yet? Oh, that's right - their advanced technology shields them from detection. Even so, it seems to me that if the 2012 apocalypse is one big misunderstanding, what does that make the beliefs of these cultists? If there's not going to be an apocalypse in the first place, why should the aliens bother showing up?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Feeding the Myth of Christian Oppression

The United States is a majority Christian nation, with members of the religion's various denominations making up nearly 80% of the American population. Nonetheless, in many conservative Christian communities the idea that Christians are somehow "oppressed" refuses to die. It has been pointed out many times that often what these groups consider "oppression" in fact consists of a refusal to grant Christians special privileges, or the idea that Christians (and only Christians) should somehow be able to air views that some find offensive and still remain free from criticism. However, this recent story shows that there may be more to it than that. An Assemblies of God group in Pennsylvania is accused of staging mock kidnappings and interrogations of students, ostensibly to prepare them for what they might encounter during missionary work in other countries.

Lanza said there were about 17 students at the meeting and the mock kidnappers covered the students' heads, put them in a van and interrogated them. Neither the students nor their parents were told about the raid beforehand, he said, though it was discussed with the parents of one youth who might have health issues.

TV station WHTM interviewed the girl who complained. "They pulled my chair out from underneath me, and then they told me to get on the ground," she told the station. "I had my hands behind my back. They said, 'Just do as I say, and you won't be hurt.'"

The girl said the teens were taken to the pastor's house, where it appeared he was being assaulted. Eventually, she said, the adults in charge revealed it was a staged event. "They heard me crying," the girl said. "Why not right then and there tell us it was a joke, when you see me crying?"

While none of the students involved were injured, it doesn't take a psychologist to work out the ramifications of subjecting them to such an experience. It clearly implants the idea that it could indeed happen to Christians right here in America, even though as far as I know no similar case has ever been reported. If these students go on to believe that "Christian oppression" is a real thing, can you really blame them? The scary thing is wondering how many people have been exposed to this sort of treatment. Unfortunately, it could be a big enough group to keep this particular myth going for decades.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Satan Attacks Zimbabwe School

Earlier this month children attending a primary school in Mufakose, Zimbabwe, were attacked by the Devil. At least, that's what many parents believe. Now, I would point out that if Satan really exists and is the most powerful being in the universe next to God himself it makes little sense for him to bother messing with a few schoolchildren rather than, say, plotting world domination. However, even when this logic is explained to them, devout believers in the Devil still fail to get it. It seems they would rather believe that somehow, the great cosmic battle between God and his arch-nemesis is all about them and their children. This is not just in places like Africa, either - similar idiocy guided the Satanic Ritual Abuse scare here in America thirty years ago.

Parents and guardians feared their children may also be affected.Some of the affected pupils were reportedly bleeding through their noses.One pupil has since been suspended to allow him to recover from the trauma.

Since last Thursday, over 30 pupils have reportedly been affected by the hysteria, blamed on suspected Satanic practices. The strange occurrences were affecting mostly Grade One and Two pupils who are said to have turned violent and exhibited extraordinary strength while speaking in unusual voices and tongues.

The pupils, it is alleged, were being taken in the afternoons by an unidentified lady in a "tinted private vehicle". When The Herald visited the school yesterday morning, hundreds of parents were calling for the closure of the school.

So I guess the Devil is supposed to have taken the form of this mysterious woman? That suggests somebody's watched the 2000 film Bedazzled too many times. Elizabeth Hurley's Devil is exactly the sort who I would imaging driving around in a "tinted private vehicle." Seriously, though, the article does bring up the issue of "hysteria," which is among skeptics' favorite explanations for events that are hard to explain. Even though the idea that the Devil attacked this school is ridiculous, labeling these events as "hysteria" when there's some evidence of real physical effects also makes little sense. Outside the psychological realm, explaining a phenomenon as "hysteria" is the skeptic's way of saying "a wizard did it."

In fact, maybe a wizard did. I can imagine how I would put together a curse to do something like this and then anchor it in a specific area - in this case, the school. I would never target a bunch of schoolchildren, but not every magical practitioner shares my ethics. For that matter, maybe its a kid with some magical talent cursing his or her schoolmates - that seems at least plausible given my own experiences in elementary school.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

That Question is Too Stupid to Answer

But I suppose I'll try anyway. Today's gem comes from Yahoo Answers, which is usually a relatively decent place to find advice on various practical matters. But every so often something like this conspiracy-laden rant slips in, which has so many things wrong with it that it's hard to know where to begin. Of course, said question involves the notorious and dreaded Illuminati. Did you even have to ask?

How many people have experienced the Illuminates witchcraft / demonology? Have you been approached by members of a secret society who worship Satan and or one of the many other demons of the New World Order? Did this Satanic Mafia try to seduce and or force you through methods of torture with witchcraft / demonology to worship their Lord lucifer and or one of their many other demons? Did they use witchcraft to try and force you to worship the Devil along with subversive acts of terrorism? Did this satanic cult use magic to summon the dead to attack you while you slept?

Well, let's see. I'm a Freemason and a member of Ordo Templi Orientis, both of which I'm sure count to this individual's twisted mind. But I wasn't "seduced" or "tortured" into joining. I know this guy will never believe it, but we don't do that. I've also never been magically attacked, at least not that I've noticed, and never worshipped a devil or demon. I'm a Thelemite - I believe in the existence of both angels and demons but I don't precisely worship anything, at least not in the way that the term "worship" is usually meant in mainstream religions.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Haunted Market

According to folklore, ghosts are usually found in areas that are isolated and get little foot traffic, like private homes and abandoned buildings. However, recent security camera footage from an IGA supermarket in Adelaide, South Australia seems to show that a ghost may have decided to haunt the market rather than, say, a spooky house somewhere across town. The footage shows a package of fruit rolls being thrown a significant distance in the middle of the night.

This has led store owner Norm Hurst to believe that supernatural beings could be at work, telling the Advertiser he thinks the 'ghost has a sweet tooth'.

Upon buying the store, Mr Hurst had been warned about a supernatural presence and he admitted that some 'strange things' have happened.

However, Mr Hurst added: 'I think it's pretty cool actually, it [the ghost] hasn't done anything nasty.'

The co-founder of Adelaide Paranormal Detectives, Jessica Pulvirenti, shored up the pro-ghost argument by claiming that the footage seemed to be genuine.

She added that it didn't look as though there were any wires around the product and also had a few tips for moving on nuisance spirits.

The footage was discussed on an Australian morning show, and while the idea that the package had just fallen was brought up it actually appears to fly a significant distance. My impression of the video is that it's clear enough that it's either a hoax or the real thing - it just looks too good to be a case of something randomly falling off a shelf. One warning sign is that the owner seems to think having a ghost is "cool," as that does provide some incentive for a hoax. But if the rest of the footage from the store shows that nobody was present, this could very well show real paranormal activity. The video is embedded below the cut so you can judge for yourself.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Muggle Quidditch Returns Home

I suppose in one sense that headline is a bit of a misnomer, as Muggle Quidditch is a fully American invention that is now finally being played on British soil. However, as the Quidditch found in the Harry Potter novels was the brainchild of British author J.K. Rowling, the United Kingdom does bear some responsibility for creating this ridiculous sport. The first official match in England was held two weekends ago, with Keele University defeating Leicester University 2-1.

To play the game, opposing teams of seven have to put ‘quaffles’ into hoops while avoiding dodgeballs known as ‘bludgers’.

The flying ‘snitch’ is played by a neutral player dressed in yellow with a tennis ball in their waistband.

In the absence of flying broomsticks, players have to run around with sticks or brooms between their legs.

Although Quidditch is new to Britain, more than 400 teams play in the US.

Now, I have a couple of readers who get on my case every time I make fun of Muggle Quidditch - because after all, the players are "just having fun." I suppose that's true. But on the other hand, if I can't describe a bunch of grown people running up and down a field in little Hogwarts capes with broomsticks between their legs as ridiculous, doesn't that imply that the word has lost all meaning?

Viewed objectively, lots of sports seem pretty ridiculous. Curling comes to mind - and hey, that involves brooms as well! If someone out there really wanted to base a sport on the Malleus Maleficarum, which is where the whole "witches riding flying brooms" comes from, they could always stipulate that everyone involved make use of liberal amounts of flying ointment and play the game naked. I'd watch that for sure, though it would probably be way too dangerous to responsibly support.

A comedian whose name I don't remember once had a routine explaining that the French hate Americans because we took their invention of the croissant and proceeded to turn it into the Croissan'Wich. I fear that Muggle Quidditch may take us down the same path with the British. J.K. Rowling imagined a sport that, quite frankly, looks unbelievably cool on film, and what did we Americans do? We turned it into a game where the brooms don't fly, but you still need to ride them in order to play.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

But Officer, These Horses Are Totally Sober!

The Amish eschew many modern technological innovations in order to live more simple, contemplative lives. But according to this story out of western New York there's one scourge of the modern world that even voluntary simplicity seems powerless to eliminate - underage drinking and driving. In this case, a fleeing buggy even collided with a police car. If you think that sounds suspiciously modern, well, you're not alone.

The Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office tells media outlets that the crash occurred around 7:15 p.m. Sunday in the rural town of Sherman, near the Pennsylvania border in New York's southwest corner.

Officials say deputies were responding to reports that people were drinking in several Amish buggies on a country road. As a patrol car arrived on the scene, one of the Amish buggies changed lanes, colliding with the police vehicle. The buggy flipped onto its side, causing minor injuries to one of the people on board.

Police say several other buggies fled the scene.

The Amish way of life can be thanked for one aspect of this incident - buggies aren't nearly as fast as cars, so the drivers involved in the collision sustained only minor injuries. At freeway speeds, they might very well be dead. But at the same time, most of the kids I knew who drank a lot in college came from small towns where there was little else to do during their teen years. I know that I would have been frustrated growing in an Amish community, since I have little aptitude for physical labor and I've been programming computers since I was eight.

Still, I suppose I could have become a writer anyway. Pen and paper is pretty low-tech.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy EBook Now Available

Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy is now available in a variety of ebook formats from Smashwords. If you've wanted to buy a copy but have been holding out for something that will fit in your e-reader, here's your chance.

Click here to check it out, and pick up a copy if you're so inclined. I haven't had a chance to take a look at it myself yet, but I'm told that it includes all the various sigils and so forth necessary for performing the conjurations of the Kings and Princes, just like the print version.

The sidebar will be updated with an ebook link soon. Until then, use the link above for Smashwords.

As always, thanks much for your continued support!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Phoenix Lights

Last week during a Phoenix, Arizona, news report by Andrea Robinson the camera caught what looked like a bright explosion in the background of the image. At first, the network thought that the light might be from an exploding transformer, but after checking with the power company they found that no such event had occurred. So far no explanation has yet emerged for the strange flash.

The strange blast was caught on tape and aired live during Robinson's report. At first, news station employees thought the explosion was a transformer. But when FOX 10 checked with local utility providers APS and Salt River Project, they were told no transformers had blown in the area.

While the source of the explosion remains a mystery, it comes just before the 15th anniversary of one of the most-famous UFO sightings in recent history. On March 13, 1997, a cluster of glowing orbs moving in a V-shaped formation was spotted in the skies above Phoenix. That incident was also caught on film. The origin of the light formation has since been endlessly analyzed and debated.

Sure, it could be related to UFO sightings, or perhaps have been caused by a natural phenomenon that would easily be mistaken for some sort of alien activty. Watch the embedded video and decide for yourself.

What I'm really hoping is that it means a mage in the Phoenix area has figured out to cast Fireball. Or maybe Lightning Bolt. Either will do as far as I'm concerned. If that's the case and the mage in question is you, feel free to drop me a line.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy Review Roundup

Up until now I've been posting reviews of my latest book over on my author web site, but for those of you who haven't had a chance to check my other site out, Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy is continuing to be well-reviewed across the blogosphere. If you're interested in the sort of magick that I actually practice, Heptarchy represents the first published portion of a system I have been working with since the mid-1990's. It's powerful and effective, and a lot less complex than the Golden Dawn Enochian system that frustrated me and eventually drove me back to working with the original source materials.

One of my main goals in writing the book the way that I did is so that it would appeal to practitioners of both Enochian and traditional grimoire magick, as I am of the opinion that the original Enochian system of John Dee and Edward Kelley in fact has a lot in common with the latter system. It incorporates similar tools, similar conjuration structures, and so forth to the grimoire methodology of the sixteenth century, and is heavily influenced by the works of Henry Cornelius Agrippa and contemporary grimoires such as the Almadel. If you go through the Dee diaries themselves this structure is fairly obvious, and as long as it's followed you don't need to work with Enochian Chess or truncated pyramids or even scrying to get solid, practical results.

Here's a collection of the reviews that the book has received so far. To all of you who took the time to review my work, you have my thanks. I've been very pleased with the response the book has received.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Dublin's Sacred Heart Stolen

Over the weekend a priceless religious relic, the preserved heart of Dublin's patron saint, was stolen from the Irish cathedral in which it was kept. The heart originally belonged to Saint Lawrence O'Toole. who was archbishop of Dublin in the twelfth century. So far no motive has emerged for the theft, but it naturally has me wondering what sort of magick whoever took it might be looking to work with the heart of a Christian saint.

The 884-year-old heart of St. Laurence O'Toole was stolen over the weekend from the iron cage where it is kept in Christ Church Cathedral, police and the cathedral said.

"All I ask is that whoever took it would return it with no questions asked. It's valueless to anyone but the Cathedral and our community and the community of Dublin. We are grieving over this and are still horrified that someone should deprive us of such a special link to our past and to our Christian founder," the dean of Christ Church Cathedral and the diocese of Dublin and Glendalough, the Very Rev. Dermot Dunne, said in a statement.

Police in Ireland are following leads from security camera footage with the hope of being able to identify those responsible for the theft, which occurred between 9:30 and 11 a.m. Saturday, the cathedral said. The relic was last seen at 10:30 a.m.

Of course, the thief might only be looking to ransom the artifact or something similar rather than cast spells with it. From a magical perspective, though, a genuine relic of this sort would provide a contagion link back to the original saint. After 884 years it's possible that entanglement sudden death might have set in, rendering the link less strong, but its symbolic power, especially to a devout Catholic, would nonetheless remain. Police have noted that there was no sign of forced entry, so the theft could possibly be an inside job.

Here's hoping that however the theft happened, the heart is eventually found and returned to it's place. Clearly its presence is profoundly inspirational to many.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Ghana Soccer Magick Backfires

I'm not a big believer in the idea that if you do a spell wrong, the result is some sort of "backfire" or "slingshot effect" or whatever it is folks feel like calling it on any particular day. In my experience the reality is that magick either works or it doesn't, and when you make a mistake the most likely outcome is that nothing at all happens.

Now there are a couple of exceptions to this rule. The first is the "careful what you wish for" problem, in which you put together a charge to the spirit that gets fulfilled literally but which either doesn't produce the result you really wanted or accomplishes it in an indesirable way. Another is when you cast a spell without really considering the overall consequences of the desired result. This seems to be what happened when players on Ghana's soccer team tried using magick to get ahead. The problem was rather than using it to improve their team's prospects, they wound up casting spells against one another.

The coach did not name any specific players in that part of the report and the GFA is refusing to comment on the matter, saying it does not discuss any issues arising from leaked documents.

"It has always happened, but players have used it to protect themselves and normally in search of luck," Sarfo Gyami, who was a member of the Ghana side at the 1992 Nations Cup, told BBC Sport.

"I have never heard of a situation when players have used it against their own colleagues. That is a very bad situation."

Needless to say, this also did not work out well for the team, which lost to Zambia in the Africa Nations Cup tournament. Unfortunately, the attitude on display is all too common in Africa. I keep reading about cases where Africans who find some member of their community becoming prosperous don't use magick to become properous themselves, but rather get together all the money they can and hire a sorcerer to curse the properous individual. This doesn't benefit these poorer members of the community in any way, but rather is just intended to end somebody else's good fortune out of spite. To my way of thinking that's a misuse of magical power all around.