luka

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mainstream psychotherapy often goes badly too becasue you are dealing with people who have very serious, possibly intractable problems.
 

luka

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i can explain how writing operates therapeutically because i am the expert. i can't speak of any other field.

writing compels the adversary to show his face. it captures and contains the adversary within a delimited field, the page. it allows the writer to take the measure of and enter into combat with the adversary. it allows the writer to model other ways of acting and reacting, and to audition other identities. the page plays much the same role as therapist in acting both as mirror and as blank screen on which projections are thrown.
 
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padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
of how that affects the way you experience the world and how the world responds to you.
i'ts about locating trauma, replaying it and thereby neutralising it. it's becoming aware of how your present is conditioned by your past, by what you are holding onto, and it is about learning to let that go.
all true

need to distinguish between therapy and psychoanalysis tho - latter is possibly psychedelic on an individual level

most therapy is anti-psychedelic - w/o even getting into the Foucault etc depths of madness and civilization, just talking the mundane stuff

literally the opposite - two ways to the same ultimate goal of confronting and dealing with reality honestly
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
another thing I'm put in mind of in re art as therapy is hearing Pollock described as a protean reaction to a post-nuclear world

which seems like a v art critic thing to say - and about prototypical Picassoid white guy serious artist - but it made me understand abstract expressionism better

reading it as a general reaction to existential trauma and/or that fundamental alienation

the earlier modernists - Franz Marc, Kandinsky, Kazimir Malevich especially
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
Malevich stripping away literally everything to expose the fundamental contradiction

granted he like of lot of those cats had one foot in a quasi-mystical recent past and another in a never-to-be Le Corbusier future

and they were mostly (I think, I'm not an expert) celebrating the modern industrial world - progress - before disillusionment had set in

but still whether you know it or not

to me Black Square is kind of the ultimate psychedelic painting
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
tho White On White would be the true ultimate expression of limitless potentiality, being nothing and therefore everything
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
btw I'm reading The Pursuit of the Millennium by Norman Cohn rn, and it feels very germane

also apparently, a notable influence on a young Guy Debord who cripped some Situ stuff from it
 

luka

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btw I'm reading The Pursuit of the Millennium by Norman Cohn rn, and it feels very germane

also apparently, a notable influence on a young Guy Debord who cripped some Situ stuff from it
that was an influence on me too. i realised how much it is possible to get away with before
they shut you down..
 

DannyL

Wild Horses
good posts padraig. yes, to answer your question Danny I do think that consciousness raising, expanding the sphere of awareness, is fundamentally a good thing.

i don't mean psychedelia as a set of signifiers i mean the mysteries.
Hmm, I don't know if I agree with this. Have you ever ready Reich on mysticism? There's something very ungrounded about the absence of boundaries implied here, just opening up the psyche and letting rip. Notions like the collective unconscious have long been critiqued for giving a free pass to fascism.
 

luka

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Hmm, I don't know if I agree with this. Have you ever ready Reich on mysticism? There's something very ungrounded about the absence of boundaries implied here, just opening up the psyche and letting rip. Notions like the collective unconscious have long been critiqued for giving a free pass to fascism.
you dont have to agree danny. make your argument. it's an open forum. i'd be glad to have your input.
 

luka

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im not using psychedelia as a synonym for caning loadsa drugs. i'm not encouraging you, Danny, to go and cane loads of drugs. I'm talking about an ongoing engagement with the Mysteries, and the unfolding process of awareness and understanding.

The majority of people here will be allergic to the word Mysteries, like so many of these terms it's just a placeholder for something ineffable. Use any word that doesn't bring you out in a rash.
 

luka

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as for Reich, yes, I've read it. I think Reich is good in many respects, very useful, very insightful, but also, inescapably, Reich is a banal reductionist, quite crude and one-dimensional in his analysis.
 

luka

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the very fact of the tantric schools negates Reich's thesis. I think we're much more sophisticated than that now.
 

luka

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i'm not quite sure what i was after. i guess it is aimed primarily, as cunty as this sounds, at practicing artists who already are operating at a high level of sophistication and understanding.

for everybody else i guess it proffers a particular reading of art, it's method, its purpose and its function, which they can engage with, take something from, or reject entirely. i dont know.

it's also just a conversation starter, open ended, thrown out there to see what happens to it. where we end up.
 

luka

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i mean, it's a manifesto isnt it.

i wrote it over my morning cup of coffee. i think this is what needs to be done. it's a diagnosis and it's a proposed cure.
 

DannyL

Wild Horses
I meant specifically Reich's critique of mysticism which you can find in partial form at the end of Character Analysis and elsewhere.

To quote myself:

"Mysticism [in Reich's sense].. is a distorted experience of one's own body energy in motion projected outward either onto imaginary figures or abstractions such as "the devil", "god" or "the Jew" or "Asiatic races" or "the angels" or "the age of Aquarius" or some idealised hero or leader. Mysticism is also accompanied by a sense of helplessness in the face of social problems , the abdication of responsibility for solutions and the fantasy that some force, god or leader is going to solve these problems without the individual having to do anything for him or herself to deal with them. The obverse of this stage is that cause of all problems are projected outside oneself as others or external abstractions".

In his book Character Analysis Reich presents a case study of a young woman with schizophrenia. She was plagued by "forces" which menaced her from the walls of her room. In the course of therapy, Reich realised that these forces where distorted perceptions of her own bodily energy. To accept them as her own produced too much anxiety (centred around sex and childhood conflicts), so she had to externalise them. The work with these "forces" — and her struggle to accept them as her own bodily sensations — ran throughout her therapy.

I am not saying that these concepts underlie all "occult" experience but I have often seen attitudes which remind me of Reich's ideas. A very real urge for aliveness, or frustration with armouring can "flip" into an uncritical acceptance of every kind of cosmic idea, an inflated sense of self-importance because of occult forces ("gods" or "angels") interfering with one's life, an over-reliance on the astral plane, and a contempt for this life and the body. In general, I feel occultists should worry less about Universe B, "alien forces" and New Aeons and get back to our bodies.


The text in bold is what I think you're doing here - being really uncritical about a nebulously defined "consciousness-raising".
 
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