Pseudo-Enlightenment, the Cure That Almost Works

whitley & son

Trauma leads to dissociation; dissociation is when a part of the individual’s psyche withdraws from an intolerable situation because it is impossible to withdraw physically. Strieber, and countless others in the fields of religion, psychism, and Ufology, are arguing that dissociation and/or out of body experiences that result from trauma are a way to access realms of experience that are otherwise unavailable to us. While (based on my own experiences) trauma can and does lead to authentic “soul journeys,” what is not being discussed, so far as I can tell, is the assumption that, because they are genuine—or to the degree which they are genuine—these visionary states  are also desirable and beneficent to us.

My own position is that these non-corporeal excursions not only depend on a disconnection from the body, but that they exacerbate it. I would even suggest (again based on direct experience) that this is the sole imagined ”benefit” of such experiences, namely, that they allow for a surrogate form of individuation and a “pseudo-enlightenment,” one which I suspect is not only no substitute for the real thing but which severely reduces the chances of it happening. If we find a convincing counterfeit for what we are, at the very deepest level, striving for, we will suppress a deeper knowing that something isn’t right in order to settle for the more easily available substitute. Yet the substitute cannot ever satisfy. There is also nothing quite so addictive as the cure that almost works.

Check out the latest installments

MP3 2: “Prosthetic Gods” (featuring Sebastian Horsley)

14 thoughts on “Pseudo-Enlightenment, the Cure That Almost Works

    • “Decades,” by Joy Division. It was one of my brother’s 12 favorite songs, listed in the back of Dandy in the Underworld.

      Pixies’ “The Happening” was another, which I took pleasure in telling him was about UFOs. He took the opportunity to disdain people who believe in UFOs (ie, me) when he wrote about the song in the book!

  1. To dig deeper into the “trauma”-based psychology of Ray Kurzweil & al, this might be of interest:

    You might want to watch this (from 30 min and 30 sec up to 34 min and 45sec) as well:

  2. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!SKY SAW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    dAng. it’s like my own personal Eno faves on these shows – uncanny 😉

    btw, the man being interviewed in the first of Abe’s videos there is Roger Dommergue, in case any readers are interested in checking out Mr. Dommergue’s ideas and background for themselves in order to evaluate his claims. Which i recommend. steph

    • We aim to please. : ) It seemed a perfect fit with the material. I listened to that album endlessly in my late adolescence. It’s the only Eno album I ever heard (not counting D Byrne collaborations).

  3. Hi Jason, how did I get the YT vids to appear in the comments? – I don’t know. I only posted the links like this (let’s see if it works again):

    (from 1:10:50 up to 1:15:20 for example)

    Many thanks for sharing your journey!

  4. “What’s the purpose of the first video here, Abe?” – It is self-explanatory, Jasun, if you watch all four parts of the interview, but even the first part hints at the issue: *circumcision on the 8th day* as the traumatizing root cause of a (heartless) speculative mentality which leads to total (social, financial, technological) disaster. You said it yourself in the discussion, (Jewish) Kurzweil seems to speak insanity.

    I had hoped it would not be necessary to point out, as the extremely well connected *Jewish* interviewee Roger Dommergue rightly does: anti-semitism is a meaningless term!

    As to dismissing “Freudian theory”:

    On Freud’s Jewish body: mitigating circumcisions (2007) – this book demonstrates how “circumcision”–the fetishized signifier of Jewish difference and source of knowledge about Jewish identity–is central to Freud’s construction of psychoanalysis

  5. Someone else was posting here about the barbarities of circumcision and laying the blame at the door of the Jews. I don’t think you need to be circumcised to be traumatized or that Jews have the hegemony over insane traditions. I think it’s backward thinking – all of these barbaric rituals and demented systems of belief are the result of trauma, not the cause of it (tho they certainly don’t help). Focusing on one group or one practice is a red herring, IMO. I am after bigger (ie smaller) fish.

    Or maybe I am too lazy to do that much research, that’s also possible. I am certainly open to contributions, but frankly the J-factor is a bit too charged for me to want to play around with. This material is already sufficiently explosive.

  6. To suggest that circumcision is the root cause (or main root cause) of individual psychological trauma seems to me to be very much as Jasun suggests – a red herring. The idea itself seems like it is acting as a pointer – focusing a reader’s attention in one direction, so that they are distracted and too confused to examine the deeper, more truthful root causes. If a traumatized psyche has a “guardian” energy that protects it, and distances it from original trauma, it might look like such a pointer.

    Freud was deeply aware of his Jewish ancestry, and at least from what I have read of Freud, he took pains to account for it in his analysis of the psyche. Even in his last book, “Civilization and its Discontents”, he wanted to find a the true root cause of western neurosis (he did not use the term trauma, but the ideas are much the same) and did not single out a specific group.

    Jasun is exploring the territory of the mind without regard to racial ancestry. Kurzweil is nutty and *why* he is (and why he has such power in the media) is a question that cannot be answered quickly or easily, although Jasun is steadily illuminating the place where the answer might be found.

    To quote Yeats, “It must go further still: that soul must become its own betrayer, its own deliverer, the one activity, the mirror turn lamp.”

  7. @Abe

    Circumcision is performed on all Muslim boys and commonplace in America and Africa. You will find it in several cultures. Stereotyping Jews for malevolent purposes and then claiming that they do not exist as a category is a typical racist ploy to annihilate Jews both physically and mentally.

    Circumcision, in common with many child-rearing habits, is invasive and could cause trauma. It is done with good intentions even if these are misguided. In considering trauma the impact of daily dysfunctional family relations and peer group pressure has to be factored in.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s