The Anvil of the Psyche

Thomas Sheridan's 2012 Book Reprinted Here

Apart from technology, not much has changed in the last three thousand years in terms of how our minds are cultivated for social and political control purposes. Our consciousness—both collective and personal—is still being invaded via the art of extraneous 'agents' and 'ghosts' corralling our psyche into cultural, political and social enclosures.

These methods and practices of our psychological enslavement have not changed since the time when our hysterical ancestors were spellbound by the parade of 'idols' under the glow of blazing torches on their way to the Ishtar Gate in ancient Babylonia. Today, the same screams of ecstasy are delivered towards the parades of Hollywood 'stars' walking along the red carpet to the Oscars—now, under the glow of the spotlight.

Nothing has changed. Nothing at all.

ONE: The Show Must Go On

Ask yourself: what is popular culture? How does popular culture, along with universally accepted ideas of art and creativity, mass media, publishing and financial constructs, as well as political and social doctrines come into existence? Are mass social and cultural movements—coupled with one's personal and social identity perception—always a natural, turbulent flow of social, economic, philosophical, spiritual and artistic threads of the collective human experience? Are there movements which organically emerge from the underground eventually to become mainstream cultural and socially accepted consensus? Then from these options, we pick and choose objectively from this smorgasbord of tastes and opinions? That we, as the consumer, the investor, the voter—including our individual decisions, affiliations, allegiances and even our emotional attachments—are all having an objective personal experience, determined exclusively by our own choices when all is said and done?

The answer to all these questions is NO.

Popular culture, along with many universally accepted ideas of art, drama, music and every other possible tangent of the human instinctual desire to marvel, understand, create and express (which also includes everything from finance to politics and advertising) has been a 'top-down' engineered process at least since the age of Classical Greece; an era when the gods of the earthly world were placed into the heavens as 'stars' to be admired, adored and worshipped unconditionally. This act was a significant turning point in human history. Some scholars also speculate that this migration of the deities from the Earth to the cosmos was the defining moment which led to the eventual destruction of Greek civilisation.

The creation of the star gods thus gave rise to the development of the earthly middle men—the Media—to act as emissaries between the imaginary mandates of the star gods and the consciousness of the population. Creating, in effect, a powerful form of magic to spellbind and control the masses. It has worked so well that Western civilization remains more or less confined within this construct to this day.

CULTURE, COMMERCE AND CONSCIOUSNESS

Welcome to the most successful and all-invasive mind control experiment in the history of the human race: Popular Culture. The ancient Greeks and later, the Romans, filled their empires—even to the most remote outposts and distant fringes of their reach—with amphitheaters and non-stop entertainment, offering everything from sonnets to slaughter. No matter what the economic, military and cultural challenges of the times presented, the Romans and the Greeks always made sure that the show went on.

The well-known Latin metaphor—panem et circenses ('bread and circuses')—was issued by a Roman satirist (usually the only voices of reason during times of political insanity), after politicians devised a plan to hand out cheap food and entertainment in order to amass popular support. This reward system still remains very much the core driver of what we call democracy within our own contemporary period. The population of my own country, Ireland, was bought and sold to the IMF with constant distractions of cheap credit, boy bands and a rather bizarre obsession with British soccer among the Irish people. There is currently no real desire in Ireland to prosecute the politicians and bankers who destroyed this republic and gave it to the IMF. Rather, the trivial concerns of the mass media, and thus, the population at large, revolve around which Reality TV star is dating which British soccer player. Again, nothing has changed.

However, it is not just Ireland, or even Europe at this point in human history. All the world's a stage now. We are just as starstruck and manipulated as we were back in 44 BC. These days, it is essentially the entire planet which is addicted to the bread (carbohydrate-based 'low fat' diets) and circuses based on everything from television talent shows—where we get to choose who lives as a star, or dies as a nobody—to watching Formula 1 cars driving around a track while hoping for a fiery crash to kill the boredom of watching Formula 1 cars driving around a track.

The drive behind this engineered obsession with popular culture was, and still is, to indoctrinate the populace with desires and ideals which suited the elite and their agenda(s). Everything we experience, and just about all aspects of our lives are rooted in popular culture now. Politicians are elected on the grounds of how attractive they are, if they are surrounded and endorsed by the 'right' movie stars, along with the overall slickness and showbiz sensibilities of their campaigns. Their policies and political savvy take second place to how well they can dance, what designer fashions they are wearing, or even if they play the saxophone. This is what really gets them elected when all is said and done—show business—and everything today is entertainment. Packaged and presented to the masses via popular culture.

Nearly all our tastes, beliefs and opinions have been presented to us in the form of entertainment of one kind or another, and at the centre of this maelstrom of celebrity worship and pop culture are the Lords of Perception, using our psyche in much the same way a blacksmith utilizes an anvil in order to shape red hot metal with constant and specific blows of his hammer. This shaping of the rod of metal into a horseshoe would not be possible without the specific construction and shape of the anvil. Likewise, the Lords of Perception need a pre-shaped human value system, already conditioned within the minds of the population, so that they can begin shaping and hammering their agenda upon the anvil of the psyche.

It is an anvil within the human mind which not only tolerates, but also willingly assists the Lords of Perception in their craft which has been pre-conditioned by formal education and cultural protocols. After we are processed into good citizens who are educated just sufficiently enough to perform a task within a pre-ordained system or methodology, or to where we live in fear of what our friends and neighbours will think of us if we start to express our individuality outside the control grid, then the Lords of Perception are free to hammer away at our individual and collective consciousness until they get the shape and tools they require to keep us on their corporate/taxation farms.

The Lords of Perception have taken their craft to such a fantastic level of meticulous and precise effectiveness that many of their culture slaves of today are gleefully running into their psychological chains and shackles, as they stand for hours and even days on end in freezing weather just to get the latest iPhone. Can you only imagine the howls of laughter emanating from behind the closed door of the Apple boardroom when they witness this kind of devotion to their inanimate produce? Valued customers indeed.

The mainly hidden and often brilliant engineers of human consciousness who work on delivering the opinions, tastes and concepts they require from the human population know more about us than we even know about ourselves. They have no choice but to constantly manipulate and program us. A population that is capable of free thinking and addressing the nature of their own existence in a cognitive and objective manner is a population which is not going to buy, shop, adore, emulate and become obsessed with the glamorous strangers in the spotlight, or millionaire sport stars in the stadiums, or the latest gadgets they do not actually need

So, the human race has to be 'made perfect that which was left imperfect' by the Lords of Perception, so that we can be more easily managed and controlled. Even so, they are still not satisfied with their own progress; the next stage being planned for some of us is their Transhumanist and Posthumanist agendas.

They are getting sick of the sight of us. Because we are now far too much work for them to keep us under constant control, and there is far too many of us for their future business model, we are to be replaced with Human 2.0: the 'perfected citizen' who can be literally reprogrammed without all the entertainment and propaganda. Until that day arrives (and it will) the Lords of Perception have to keep us in check with their approved mass media, art, advertising, music, drama, sport and propaganda/social engineering which they bombard our consciousness with incessantly.

This is not to say, however, that much of our Western culture and ideals do not have merit, real beauty and depth which has also enhanced the collective human experience. Much of it over the centuries most certainly has. We are fortunate enough to have masters who (now and again), have shown superb taste when it suited them. The Lords of Perception are just as astute and insightful to the kind of influences which we, the plebs, are deeply moved by. However, Mozart, Shakespeare and Robert Frost, along with numerous brilliant Poet Laureates and Nobel Prize winners, were a product of the state-sanctioned culture initially presented to us from the ruling classes.

The effects that such wonderful art, music and spiritual insights have upon the population have not gone unnoticed, and hence why it has seeped into every possible aspect of our lives, as everyone from marketing executives to public relations experts, and on to political spin doctors have incorporated popular culture into their craft and thus have spellbound us in a haze of feel-good hormones and Hallmark Moments.

Even so, they have still done us a great disservice. We, as sovereign humans, are entitled to be allowed to develop our own consciousness—naturally formed, indigenous social and cultural tangents—without being constantly assaulted and influenced to the point where we never consider that there might be other methods of living our lives. The social and personal price we pay for this is enormous. Feelings of inadequacy, insecurity and engineered envy are not signs of a healthy society. These are the tools by which we are made dependent upon—and are at the mercy of—the Lords of Perception. We are given false priorities and skewed values.

It is one thing to love the music of a certain rock band; but it is another thing altogether to obsess over the individual musicians and singers in the group. We are given celebrities to hate and despise, and others to worship and adore. We are told what to like, what to eat, what to drink, how to dance, dress, vote and copulate.

We deserve better. Often, the end result when confronted with failure to attain these manufactured states of ecstasy, is that we do not like ourselves, and thus turn to mass medication, superficial pop psychology and spiritual panaceas as the answers—which are in essence other forms of show business. Many people live their lives in silent torment and frustration for not being as beautiful and as wealthy as the celebrities who endlessly appear on our television screens and fill our glossy magazines.

Modern humans are punished by the artificial pop cultural standards which constantly bombard their psyche, addicted like junkies to a psychological narcotic which is killing them from the inside out. Building a kind of constricting anaconda around their psyche from which there is both a comforting familiarity and an impending sense of muted terror; when all they have to do is just switch the TV off, throw away the newspapers/glossy magazines and hit the pause button within their mind. Then, after a while, they will start to notice something which had been deliberately switched off by the Lords of Perception: their intuition.

The purpose of this book is to help the reader understand how controlled we actually are, and the often detrimental effects this control has upon our experience as human beings and what we can do to build a firewall around our psyche. Not so much to block popular culture out, but to develop a more healthy relationship with it. To remove the unconditional and replace it with the conditional and, from this, attain a richer, healthier and more positive human experience which not only has positive psychological benefits, but also improves our quality of life, overall health and how we relate to other people in our lives.

Ultimately, this book is not a polemic. I am not here to tell you that I am right and others are wrong. All I am asking you to do is to consider the information contained within these pages, and then from this, find the narrative to your own life story, as this is the most rewarding objective of the human experience and the most authentic code worth living by.

TWO: The Hit Parade

Contrary to popular recollection, there were actually two assassinations made upon John Lennon. Both of these 'hits' resulted in being highly successful in terms of the specific objectives of the respective assassins. Both were a direct result of purposely dogmatic and precise cultural realities by 'they' who seek to control our minds for their own corporate and political agendas: the all-powerful Lords of Perception, who have labored tirelessly to entomb our intellectual and creative potential, both individually and as a collective species. This has been achieved by means of the manipulation of human consciousness through 'popular' forms of music, art, cinema, television and publishing.

The endgame of this on-going onslaught upon the human mind—via everything from fashion to the financial markets, political spin to sexual identity politics—all delivered through corporate and state-sanctioned art forms—is to ensure that the majority of the population is unable to attain personal independence and emotional satisfaction. Such feelings of independence and psychological well-being can only be derived from within oneself. This sense of autonomy is therefore considered a major obstacle to the globalists. They can't sell you products, ideas, emotions and solutions if you do not need them. So they seek to create these emotional and psychological defects within us all, and then sell us the means with which to repair them. With a 1000% mark-up, naturally.

This well-cultivated entertainment obsession and distraction—which many people are now completely conditioned by—results in the general population being completely dependent upon the limited bandwidth of social, political and cultural choices the control grid presents them with to argue over, and to even die and kill for. Straddled between the mass of the population and their controllers are the Lords of Perception pulling the strings, baking the breads and putting up the circus tents.

Through a never-ending succession of fads, trends and crazes, the human race is shackled under the yoke of non-stop entertainment and mass media hype in order for them to be maintained at the ideal level (from the master's perspective) of consciousness development. A level of consciousness endlessly seeking magical relics and blessings from their hand-picked celebrities and other cultural 'icons'. However, these can only be the 'right' kind of cultural icons. As we shall see, John Lennon was one cultural dissident who paid the price (twice) for being a beacon of sanity for the tiny number of individuals who could still think for themselves and see the control grid for what it truly is.

THE NEW MIDDLE AGES DELIVERED WITH A SMILE

The drive behind these New Middle Ages of today is precisely the same as it was during the original Middle Ages, that being interrelated dependency between the engineered ignorance and superstitions of the populace and towards the commercial objectives of the powerful individuals and organizations who rule over them. Money talks and the pilgrims still walk, and still pay their hard cash when they get to the temples of the absurd to find the salvation that our state-sanctioned pundits decided that they need.

These days, they journey not to the gargoyle-encrusted cathedrals to maul the worn-down statues of saints, but instead to the pay-per-view specials, front row seats, or as the bug-eyed fans to be found screaming hysterically behind armed guards on either side of the red carpet in the direction of the rich and famous whom they love, worship and adore. That is, until they are given their orders to later hate them at some point. Which is usually after the celebrity makes an honest opinion/statement. This then marks them out for devaluation and straight-to-rental movies, or musical obscurity for the remainder of their careers.

The stars of today know their place—otherwise, they will be reduced to being nobodies once again—and in this world, being a nobody is the modern-day equivalent of being a leper. Celebrities exist exclusively to impose fascistic notions of beauty and perfection (and even engineered ugliness) upon the masses. If they make a political or social comment, it has to be the one given to them by the approved Press Office, or from some corporate puppet running for elected office. Whenever one of the stars—deliberately or accidentally—breaks from the 'program', they are to be either sacrificed back into obscurity, or be attacked by the same fans who previously worshiped them. It is as simple as that.

Usually, the initial vendetta for straying beyond the vapid world of the moronic celebrity persona comes in the form of a warning via public ridicule or scandal. The second time, they will not be subject to any warning—the free-thinking celebrity was already warned once—the next time, they will be removed. Hence, why John Lennon found himself on the receiving end of two assassinations. Both of these 'hits' were derived from the millennia-old pathological control of popular culture from the top-down, along with the media's symbiotic relationship between global, political and commercial objectives. You play their game, or you are off the chessboard—one way or another. There is also no end of delusional former fans who will kill you just as quickly as they will want to marry you.

Celebrities live behind high walls and electric fences for a reason—to protect themselves from the fans who adore and seek to emulate them. The Latino singing star, Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, was murdered in 1995—at the age of 23—by Yolanda Saldívar, the president of her fan club, who was also embezzling large sums of money from the organisation. Saldívar approached Selena to run her fan club, although she originally told people that she disliked the singer due to her success. That's the real reason: fan is short for 'fanatic'.The devotion is superficial in terms of adoration and vitriolic (and even murderous) in condemation.

JOHN LENNON'S DOUBLE TRAGEDY

The second, and most well-known assassination of John Lennon was perpetrated within the confines of the Dakota Building in Manhattan by Mark David Chapman, a mundane, half-witted pop fan (fanatic) who shot Lennon dead just as the former Beatle was on the verge of making a major comeback after his decade-long exile of being essentially under the control of a Japanese aristocrat and conceptual artist named Yoko Ono. Ono had spent years playing on Lennon's insecurities, along with his unfulfilled need for a mother figure within his life, to the point where he was literally incapable of functioning without her guidance. Although Lennon was himself a complex and difficult man at times (as most great artists and free-thinking mavericks usually are), Yoko Ono provided him with a type of faux domestic stability and family life he had always subconsciously craved.

The artistic and creative price which Lennon paid for this Double Fantasy—which Yoko Ono had snared him into—will probably be never fully known. Lennon had previously found healing and success by working through his emotional challenges, and then transforming them into song by unleashing his remarkable creative force upon the world. He only found artistic and political stagnation, isolation and boredom inside the confines of the Dakota Building. The North German Renaissance-style apartment building on West 72nd Street overlooking Central Park was to become a kind of creative penal colony for Lennon's previous insults to the elite. He essentially became a hermit in the years following the demise of the Beatles and later, his Plastic Ono Band.

However, by the late 1970's, Lennon was looking back across the Atlantic at the growing Punk Rock movement, and something which had been buried deep inside him was beginning to once again bubble to the surface. In time, this would make him a dangerous man once more, as he had previously been during the final years of Beatlemania. Back in November 1969, John Lennon returned his MBE (Member of the British Empire) medal to the Queen as an act of protest against the Vietnam War. In 1979, Lennon was looking towards a new generation of guttersnipe, guitar-bashing misfits in his homeland mocking the very same monarchy which he was now essentially living in exile from. John Lennon was waking up again.

ENTER THE FANATIC

Conversely, Mark Chapman, the son of a staff sergeant in the U.S. Air Force, spent his childhood lost in a fantasy world of being the king of a community of imaginary 'little people'—who lived in the walls of his bedroom—and was perhaps the perfect potential assassin-fan for Lennon. If indeed Chapman was, as some claim, a mind-controlled killbot sent out by the powers-that-be to murder Lennon, this still remains unproven due to a complete lack of real or plausible circumstantial evidence. This does not rule out the possibility that Mark Chapman could well have been a kind of MK Ultra assassin. Cross-dressing FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover was well known for his visceral hatred of Lennon. The kind of people who implement such very real and well documented mind-control assassination programs may have covered their tracks very well. Hence, the lack of good, solid evidence? We will probably never know the full story. Personally, I believe Chapman was a delusional psychotic with a need for fame and attention. Even so, any useful idiot will do, and one assassin is as good as the next, once the job is completed.

However, in terms of Chapman's psychosis being turbo-charged by the obsession with, and then hatred of a celebrity, this pathology was very much an engineered process. People are constantly being conditioned to love and then hate their popular cultural heroes. One song, one incorrect statement, or media hitpiece is enough for the millions of purposely-engineered neurotic-obsessives worldwide to go from worshiping their idol to wanting him or her destroyed.

This witch-hunt mentality within popular culture, fueled by everything from sexual frustration to jealousy, has been cultivated in the minds of the hysterical, using everything from the tabloids to gossip magazines and on to the Internet. The obsessive fan is engineered to idolize and initially consider a certain celebrity as the panacea to their own personal issues. However, should that star marry the wrong person, or make a 'politically incorrect' statement, or simply just tell some overly intrusive autograph hunter to leave him or her alone at an airport, then the obsessed fan can turn into a monstrous proto-psychopathic personality who will hate and detest their previous idol with almost inconceivable levels of vitriol and vengeance.

This is because popular culture is designed to make the fan adore the performer (as an icon) rather than the performance. The celebrity or public figure is basically stripped of their humanity, and the public are conditioned to say the most appalling and often evil statements about them. Almost as if these people—with real emotions, families and human attributes and failings—deserve to be hated on cue by virtue of their success. Matters not if they are sincerely very talented and have given joy to millions. If the Lords of Perception give the orders via the tabloids, the fans will gladly savage their previous idol in the most personal and sadistic manner imaginable. Such fickle fanaticism ensures a steady stream of new idols and heroes for the masses to adore, spend money on and then later devalue them. Hysterical impulsiveness and wild irrationality have always been good for business and social engineering.

Mark Chapman was an extreme example of this personality disorder, and he was just the man the elites would have needed to take out Lennon. Matters not if they did not have a direct, hands-on approach in cultivating Chapman into the killer—he, or someone else just like him—was eventually going to encounter Lennon with the intent of destroying him.

Disregarding his lack of wealth, Mark Chapman was, in many ways, ironically enough, the male version of Yoko Ono: another groupie in the guise of a wannabe celebrity/intellectual. Chapman had remained at the scene—after killing Lennon—reading The Catcher in the Rye, a novel by J. D. Salinger.

When first published, this book was considered a landmark, cultural and social driver towards a more materialistic-orientated American society which 'normalized' the notion of the apathetic, dysfunctional personality as a role model for the gullible to emulate. A person with no talent or creative intention; just being antagonistic for the sake of it.

The novel introduced terms such as 'phony' into popular vocabulary, which in time came to 'justify' Chapman's murder of Lennon. A new kind of popular hero who follows their instincts—while considering nothing of any depth or intellectual worth—hunting for the phony around every corner. Albeit, never pausing long enough to consider that they themselves may be the biggest phony of all. Which, tellingly enough, describes the kind of people who tend to claim that the book The Catcher in the Rye is a masterpiece. The novel's sixteen-year-old anti-hero, Holden Caulfield, perfectly illustrated the then (early 1950's) emerging pop culture personality of the hedonistic, proactively apathetic hero-to-zero, who preferred to lose his personality-construct in a narcissistic pursuit of his own needs and desires at the expense of attaining any form of personal or consciousness evolution.

On December 8, 1980, Mark Chapman was as much a product of this vapid cultural engineering as Lennon himself was considered the possible antidote: a return to something much more meaningful in terms of sincere and challenging public figures who could cultivate social awareness and empathy for others who unable to attain the status of the 'beautiful people.'

John Lennon had been considered something of a dormant spokesperson from the world of popular culture, and a public figure who once actually had something very meaningful to say. It was also becoming apparent that Lennon was, by all accounts, ready to rise to the challenge—both artistically and creatively—once more. The cultural synchronicity which carved out the path that brought Chapman into fateful contact with Lennon that day had been predestined by a previous assault which the powers-that-be had implemented upon Lennon over a decade earlier. Lennon, 'the celebrity with something to say', was eventually silenced by the generation that had been trained to keep their mouths shut and have nothing to say. In and around the granite monolith of the Dakota Building on that chilly winter's day, the hunter would become the hunted.

WHEN LENNON LED THE WORLD IN THE QUEST FOR SANITY

However, the final and fatal attack on John Lennon was essentially an encore of sorts—twelve years before Chapman loaded six hollow point bullets into his .38 special revolver, the first high profile assassination of John Lennon took place. This was the clinical, manipulative and brilliantly engineered cultural and public nullification of his growing influence, just as Lennon was emerging as potentially the world's foremost political and social activist. This came about as a result of a remarkable television interview on June 6th 1968, when the then-Beatle issued perhaps what was one of the most profoundly erudite, social and political commentaries ever spoken by any popular cultural figure of the last two hundred years, when he stated:

"Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we're being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I'm liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That's what's insane about it."

Lennon, within the brutal and almost casual honesty of this brief statement, expressed perfectly what many millions of people around the world were also thinking to themselves at that time. His words were so precisely succinct and cut straight to the heart of the matter—encapsulating in basic language—that which normal, well-adjusted people all over the planet longed to have some public figure finally articulate. The problem was that this statement came from a pop star and not a politician. Lennon had forgotten his place.

At that point, John Lennon was a man with a price on his head. Nobody, least of all the control grid, expected a pop star to be the one who pulled the cat out of the bag and then showed it to the world. Being the vindictive psychopaths that so many of the world's leaders are and remain to this day, that cat was going back into the bag, and Lennon and all he represented was to be drowned along with it. The Lords of Perception were perfectly fine with Tiny Tim having the catatonic masses 'tip-toeing through the tulips'. However, the last thing they wanted was the still cognitive members of society pointing to Lennon and announcing 'right on!' to his pronouncement that the world was run by insane people—which millions did when they heard Lennon say so in such clear and concise language.

This popular and ignored consensus was most definitely outside the paradigm which had been so carefully engineered by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists and 'trusted' media icons of that era such as Walter Kronkite. This directness from a pop star was not to be tolerated. Lennon and other celebrities were to know their place and state what they were told to think and say, and no more than that.

Following the social, economic and cultural trauma of the American Civil Rights Movement, which had been eventually 'resolved' via the murders of two members of the Kennedy political dynasty, along with the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, coupled with this anger over the Vietnam War, along with the complete economic and infrastructural obliteration of several American inner cities during this time of social upheaval, the distrust of government—especially in the United States—was at an all-time high. The crazy making of the pathetic Flower Power era was quickly losing its infantile appeal, as real anger and frustration was growing. Finally, here was a long-haired English pop star neatly wrapping the entire situation up in a succinct brutal truism. The world was indeed run by insane people.

This landmark interview was the point at which John Lennon was to seal his eventual fate at the hands of the 'insane people'. The point in which he transcended the unspoken and unchallenged decorum of being a vapid celebrity, and thus metamorphosing into a real human being able to think for himself in order to express his own opinions. The echo of his consciousness and conscience was revealed during this interview, and this was also the opinion of the majority of the planet who heard him speak so directly on what they also knew to be the truth behind closed doors. He had come a long way from the charming and quirky Liverpool native on American TV with his wry, cheeky smile, singing songs about wanting to dance with girls and being lovesick all the time. In terms of what a celebrity is supposed to do and not do, say and not say, Lennon had effectively committed an act of high treason. In the minds of the 'insane people', there is only one punishment for this.

However, crude murderous assassinations by the 'insane people' had been already taken to an industrial level during the 1960's, so that in terms of any public relations advantage, the option of putting a bullet in Lennon at this stage would have been the last straw for the millions who were given the shock indoctrination of the JFK live snuff movie, and the pile of other high profile cadavers in the years since. There were already too many famous corpses for the 1960's public to handle—the blood lust of the 'insane people' was becoming akin to being a sick cliché by the time the Swinging Sixties were coming to a close. Something else was needed to take John Lennon out.

YOKO TAKES CENTER STAGE

So, just when it seemed that this Beatle was on the cusp of being everything a generation—tormented and traumatized by the global elites—were waiting for, when it finally seemed that John Lennon was about to become the most powerful social activist on the global stage since Mahatma Gandhi, within less than a year of making his 'insane people' speech, Lennon was reduced to a pointless, hairy harlequin on television screens all over the planet spouting nonsense and reading letters—with one letter writer actually foretelling his murder—handed to him by his new wife.

Some laughed and many others sighed as they witnessed Lennon sitting up in a bed with Yoko Ono in the presidential suite of the Amsterdam Hilton Hotel, looking like a clown for all to see. Reality TV was born during The Ballad of John and Yoko. People asked themselves: 'where had the articulate and erudite Lennon gone to?' People watched in amazement and amusement between March 25th and 31st 1969, as he and Yoko invited the press into their hotel room every day to report on him being reduced to an incoherent, barely articulate tramp, muttering half-nothing platitudes about PEACE and BED. The media circus that resulted from this nonsense successfully undermined the impact of Lennon's previous 'insane people' speech less than a year before. John Lennon had been taken out in the Amsterdam Hilton without a single shot being fired.

THREE: The Erotomanic Industrial Empire

In 1921, the French psychiatrist Gaëtan Gatian de Clérambault published a comprehensive review paper on what was to become known later as de Clérambault's Syndrome, whereby an unstable individual comes to believe that another person—often a celebrity or high-profile individual—using coded signs, words and even mere glances, is sending secret love messages to the person afflicted with what is now more commonly known as erotomania. This condition afflicts mainly women and a small percentage of males.

Erotomanics believe they are being given these coded messages either in person (at a concert, or another impersonal encounter), and also through the media (during interviews, etc). It can even go as far as believing that seeing a certain licence plate on a random car or, the erotomanic's favorite color appearing on television are declarations of love being sent personally to the individual affected with the syndrome. Erotomania has been noted for centuries as a kind of delusional psychosis/hysteria and which has been also coined with the terms: Phantom Lover Syndrome, Psychotic Erotic Transference Reaction and Delusional Loving.

Erotomania generally involves a woman with the delusion and a man whom she considers to be of higher social/public profile or status. A common form of the disorder would involve a situation where a young lady takes a course in college and then becomes enamored with a male professor, believing that he is in love with her too. The erotomanic female then indulges in a complex delusional psychosis surrounding this man and her imaginary relationship with him, convincing herself of both his desire for her, and his complete devotion to her. This delusion may go on for a period of a few weeks, and in some cases may even persist for decades. When her romantic 'love' is unrequited, the delusional female will sometimes invent the most complex and bizarre revenge fantasies and smear campaigns against the man she is obsessing over, ranging from false allegations including everything from rape to implicating him in other illegal or unethical acts.

In the 1998 paper from the Journal of the National Medical Association, entitled Erotomania Revisited: Thirty-Four Years Later, one case involved a woman who believed that the man whom she was obsessing over had married and impregnated her, and that she had given birth to a large number of their children. She then claimed that these non-existent children had been taken away by her parents for a psychiatrist to give them up for adoption against her will. All this for a man she had only met through an adult education class and had never even actually socialized with. The symptoms of erotomania include impulsiveness, irrational fear of abandonment, explosive bouts of anger and visceral hatred towards the man, while constantly alternating between idealization and devaluation.

'BORN THIS WAY' OR BRILLIANTLY ENGINEERED?

In recent times, the non-stop media obsessions with celebrities would appear to be something of a modern social epidemic. Which is precisely what the Lords of Perception want: a population which is being deluding into thinking that the celebrities they adore are as real to them—if not, even more real and vital—than the actual individuals they encounter within their own lives. Lady Gaga's 'little monsters' is a prime example of this engineered erotomania in young adults of both sexes.

As Gaga's image has been brilliantly cultivated by her handlers to be neither male or female in terms of her sexuality, she garnishes hysterical adoration from both young, often closeted homosexual men, and young women, insecure about their own physical attractiveness. The Lords of Perception won't let any socio-economic resource go untapped, and they know just what it takes to capture and hold a specific demographic, using methods and tools that have been around for thousands of years.

In the same manner in which Edward Bernays so effectively utilized the psychoanalytical philosophies of his uncle Sigmund Freud in order to capitalize on the 'Diseases of the Personality' to target the psychology of countless millions using propaganda and sexual insecurities, the same methodologies have also been implemented to utilize mythological and similar archetypes for the same reasons. Often, this is purely by accident, whereby the advertisers, marketers and image makers stumble deep into the archetypal core of the human personality, and often with spectacular success. Lady Gaga's artistry is essentially musically non-descriptive. However, the people behind her image absolutely know precisely what they are doing. At some level, either she, her management, handlers and image makers have demonstrated that there is a real understanding of how to tap into this esoteric resonance of the human condition in order to make her a modern idol.

Gaga's entire image is visually and brilliantly mythological. Her people have obviously looked into the deep esoteric knowledge of the collective and Classical canon. Her stage sets are temples, while her photo shoots are filled with deep-rooted esoteric and psychoanalytical symbolism which cuts right to the core of her fans' individual psyche. In the case of Lady Gaga, none of this can be a result of coincidence or lucky marketing, for it is much too esoterically specific. Her image and persona thus far has mainly been a homage to the archetypal personas of Egyptian goddess Isis and the lunar deity Hathor—'guide to the secret land of the dead'—the Queen of the West. Lady Gaga's appearance at an event dressed in a gown made of the flesh of dead animals was tapping into the archetype of Hathor, invoking her allegory on behalf of the dead and the dying.

There are also several photo shoots of Gaga and stage sets where she is purposely placed between the dualistic pillars of positive and negative power—according to esoteric doctrine—upon which the universe is founded, representing absorbing and unifying the opposing energies of the cosmos. In Hebrew mysticism, this can be also viewed as the demon known as the Shekhinah—linking the twin pillars of cognitive functioning—the conscious and unconscious personalities of her fans. Stage magic in every sense of the word.

Lady Gaga's persona deeply aligns with the esoteric resolution of duality of the feminine element within man, or the Anima. Hence, why urban legends/rumors are deliberately circulated that Lady Gaga has a penis, or that she is a transsexual or transgender person in real life. This also reveals another brilliant aspect to her persona, as the hysterical dangers of the feminine element within should always remain and be misunderstood. Hence, why she remains such a mystery beyond the persona. She is to be adored and feared, as in previous ages was Hecate and Lilith, Ruler of Demons ('little monsters'), the 'mistress of illusions' who seduces and then devours her suitors and lovers.

These archetypes are utilized and tapped into in the same way our ancestors used everything from mythology to children's fairy tales, to explore any iconography and motifs which may help lead us to the truth of our own inner subconscious experiences. These days, the objectives are crude and commercially-driven, but they are spawned from the same allegorical and mythological lineage. The function of all myth is to use the narrative to look for the meanings—unfortunately, in these times our celebrity idols provide these explorations within their own public image, rather than their fans doing this for themselves.

As Joseph Campbell once stated, “Myth is just another person's religion,” allowing us to balance our outer world with our inner world of dreams, feelings and inclinations. These deep-rooted aspects of the human psyche are the persona and archetypes that Lady Gaga is tapping into with her music videos and concerts. In precisely the same way advertisers tap into the insecurities and class consciousness of the consumer. It's just business, but very, very clever business. The Lords of Perception have been visiting the same watering holes for a very long time indeed.

To a lesser degree, similar psychoanalytical dynamics can be witnessed in everything from political activists to sports team supporters, tapping deep into the archetypal consciousness of the masses. Consider the names and logos of these sports clubs—esoteric symbols and motifs are very prevalent—especially in European soccer clubs and stadia ('hallowed turf'), such as the towers of the old Wembley Stadium in London and the San Siro in Milan.

This cultivated obsession—and then often media-engineered hatred—of the idol ensures a healthy supply of new celebrities for the 'fans' to obsess over. Not to mention the resulting continuous and perennial cash flow into the entertainment and sporting industries. The temples and cathedrals of today are now the concert halls and stadiums, which is why so many evoke the names of Classical elements: Odeon, Forum, Orpheum, Apollo and so on.

FOUR: Chemical Love

In the mid-twentieth century—due mainly to the power of radio and the growing dominance of magazine publishing—imposed mass erotomania enjoyed its first major cultural presence with the Bobby Soxer movement and their obsession with the first singing teenage idol, Frank Sinatra. Armies of hysterical young girls and women, aged from their early teens to their early twenties—who could be identified by their poodle skirts and rolled down socks just above their ankles—were encouraged to consider the young crooner from Hoboken, New Jersey to be their real-life lover. When he performed a love song, this song was specifically for the young woman listening. She came to believe that she—and she alone—was the object of Sinatra's affections. Another negative aspect of this was that women's requirements in men were then elevated to unattainable levels of talent and good looks, which the average male could not possibly attain. Women were being conditioned to see their 'idols' as being the only benchmark for any potential suitor.

A new economic resource had been created for manipulation and exploitation by the Lords of Perception: the love-sick teenager. She would thus be engineered to feel heartbroken and betrayed when her idol became engaged or married, and then move on to another idol for her to put posters of him on her bedroom wall, and dream about walking down the aisle with him someday. A never-ending supply of celebrity crushes and a constant supply of new idols and their merchandise to be purchased.

By cultivating a kind of sociological erotomania, the entertainment industry generates spectacular income—everything from movie and TV production companies to sports teams—and on to magazines and every other facet of mass media today. They want a society which places more value on Kim Kardashian's new shoes than on caring if the elderly neighbor up the street is still alive or not. Many people today can readily whip off the names of celebrity children, but cannot even point to their own country on a map of the world. While social commentators issue platitudes concerning the vapidness of modern society, the irony remains that the ones issuing these platitudes are themselves celebrity spokespeople and journalists chosen to deliver these same vapid commentaries. Therefore, the corporate mainstream media can't be trusted, as anyone can purchase it.

When the adoration of a celebrity is then media-manufactured into hatred, we are given a real insight into just how psychotic mass hysteria can be, and how the witch hunts and persecutions of the past happened with the full consent and cooperation of the population at large. This clearly explains why famous people tend to only have other famous people as their friends. In many cases, it has nothing to do with elitism. In this day of borderline-psychotic celebrity obsession, it is the only means by which famous people can feel safe. A kind of social-circle insurance policy. All it takes is one erotomanic female fan or jealous male—posting psychotic diatribes on Internet message boards—to make another person's life a misery. The obsessive admiration can instantly turn one hundred and eighty degrees for the slightest reason, and can transform into vicious malice overnight with vitriolic verbal attacks on the famous person they previously 'loved' only hours before.

So much of this engineered erotomania comes down to a certain sociological dynamic created by celebrity gossip magazines and websites. Hollywood gossip mongerer Perez Hilton—who also demonstrates extreme hyper-misogynistic traits by infamously drawing penises on the faces of women—stopped short of calling former Miss California Carrie Prejean the 'C' word, when she indulged in the apparent evil (in Hilton's opinion) of giving an honest answer to his question about her views on homosexual marriage, by politely disagreeing with the idea, which in a free and open democracy is her perfect right to do so. That should have been the end of it. Instead, the psychotically-hysterical and hate-fueled Hilton used his website to essentially wage war on the young woman.

Even more sickening was that after Perez Hilton called her a “dumb bitch”, she was then stripped of her title! Even though beauty pageants are absurd for the most part, the most revealing aspect of this entire debacle is that Carrie Prejean was persecuted for issuing a contrary opinion on a subject which the Lords of Perception want the public to accept. Not because they care about Gay marriage as such, but because it creates new income streams surrounding everything from wedding planners to divorce lawyers. Miss California threw a temporary wrench in the works of this business strategy, and the arm-wringing and fascistic reaction by certain elements of the media tells you all you need to know about how vital their agendas are and the lengths to which they will go in order to safeguard their social engineering.

Carrie Prejean was subjected to precisely the same 'hit' from Perez Hilton that previous media assassins used to land John Lennon in the Amsterdam Hilton decades previously: she spoke her honest opinion on a subject. There is no such thing as genuine freedom of speech in a world under the yoke of the politically correct globalists. Not a chance.

THE DIVINE PERSONA

Ancient Greece is, realistically speaking, the ground zero of the Erotomanic Industrial Complex and the obsession with stardom, physical perfection, along with the fickle nature of fame and fortune. Long before Rudolph Valentino and Elvis Presley, the masses were first introduced to the notion of the 'Divine Persona' through the complex and often magical performances originally derived from cults venerating Dionysus, who was the Greek god of wine, ritual hysteria and ecstasy.

Essentially the first rock star, Dionysus was originally depicted as well-dressed and was also described as being 'man-womanish'—holding a staff, tipped with a pine cone. It has been speculated that the pine cone represents the human pineal gland (they look very much alike in shape and structure) and which produces the hormone melatonin, and is stimulated by changes in darkness and light. As Greek plays—like our modern rock and pop concerts—often took place at night, the release of melatonin creates a more receptive and even ecstatic response in the viewer.

To further underpin that not much has changed in recent centuries, Dionysus is often shown being followed by wild female devotees (groupies) parading behind his chariot (stretched limo). The framework for what we today call the 'superstar' was developed by the ancient Greeks and was so successful in controlling the perceptions of the population that the same basic model for stardom of today is almost certainly rooted in the mythology of the Dionysus cults from around 1500-1100 BC.

THE MAKING OF THE STAR

We have all heard the story of pre-Renaissance Florentine artist Giotto—who, instead of keeping watch over the flock—spent his time sketching in the sand, until this talented eight-year-old shepherd boy was discovered by the painter Cimabue, who then took the young Giotto under his wing as his protégé in order to transform him into the greatest artist of the fourteenth century. Such rags-to-riches tales appear so romantic and hopeful when conveyed to the listener, that one day, we all will somehow be judged on our talents alone and gain notoriety from this. These 'fairy tales' reinforce the notion that thanks to the unselfish visionary attributes of wealthy benefactors, along with these legends being continually retold over and over again, they become real.

What a pity that the Giotto legend and other similar tales are fabricated back-stories which have been used since the time of Classical Greece to woo and control the masses. The story of the talented sheep herder appears all throughout the history of art, and on some archetypal level, perhaps originally emerging through the vernacular and codes of Freemasonry? The tale being completely allegorical: the 'sheep' being symbolic of the masses, and the artist(s) being the determining agent in their cultural self-identity, cultivated on behalf of the ruling elite?

In Earnst Kris and Otto Kurz's book, Legend, Myth, Magic and the Image of the Artist — A Historical Experiment (1934) numerous examples are given of great talents who were 'discovered' as humble shepherd boys by great artists who took them under their wings. A motif developed in the philosophical schools of Classical Greece, and continues to this day with gladiatorial singing competitions on TV which draw vast audience ratings, as young hopefuls are assessed and are then given the chance to become an 'idol' according to the star makers of today. The turning of a mere mortal into a star—or celebrity godhead—for the population to idolise and emulate is also found within Plato's theory of art. However, it was not until the Renaissance that the talented artist(s) were elevated into living gods—assuming the role of the reconstructed Dionysus archetype—as was noted at the time, to be transformed into 'the stylus of god' and the artist/celebrity being afforded the honour of being a divine entity.

These same romanticized 'a star is born' stories still go on to this day, although they have to be made suitable for our more modern realities and tastes. Nonetheless, as we can see with TV programmes such as American Idol and The X Factor, the same rule applies: that being “do as you are told and we the elite will make another 'star' out of you...” The harsh reality is that there is no modern popular culture derived from the values—be they spiritual or artistic—of the collective folk consciousness of the society. All our popular culture comes from the agenda of the elite, which in our own contemporary era are the major corporations.

THE SLAUGHTER OF THE TEMPORARY KINGS

Ritual regicide is the sacrificial killing of a divine king who is allowed to reign for a certain period of time. The practice was so widespread across the entire world for it to be considered a universal practice until the time of the Babylonians. This was the point when the dynastic traditions became obsessed with heredity and bloodlines. In other traditions, it was also common to create a kind of surrogate king—who would be sacrificed instead of the actual monarch—but was allowed to enjoy all the privileges, pleasures and veneration of the real monarch for a certain period of time before being executed.

The Bunyoro people of Africa would select a temporary king every year, and after reigning for one week, he was strangled to death. Likewise, during the festival of the Sacaea, the Babylonians had their own version of the mock king who was allowed to enjoy the consorts and concubines while dressed in the king's finest regalia and again, after reigning for five days was also put to death. We can see how the appeal of being a king—even for a limited period, only to end in death—would be considered appealing to a life otherwise made up of toil, poverty and hardship. This mentality is echoed to this very day with the 'reality shows' on television such as Big Brother, where 'nobodies' obsessed with becoming mock celebrities are put in the spotlight, only to be sacrificed at the end of a certain period of fame.

Humiliation seems to play an important aspect in this dynamic, as well. The mock celebrity is willing to be laughed at, belittled and even hated by millions of people: the recognition or short-lived fame being the compensation for the public ridicule. One particularly interesting case—in a socio-psychological sense—was that of British Reality TV star Jade Goody. A young working class woman, Goody attained the status of a household name while appearing on the UK version of Big Brother in 2002. Her rise from obscurity to fame and then infamy and back to fame again not only presented a unique insight into modern concepts of stardom, but also how well conditioned the general public is to their own mind control and manipulation. After her initial stint on Big Brother, Goody then shot to fame with her own Reality TV shows and merchandise.

After some years in the limelight, with Celebrity Big Brother 2007, Goody returned as housemate, where she and two other housemates began bullying Indian actress Shilpa Shetty. Following this incident, which rocked the superficial fabric of politically-correct British media, she was evicted from the show and was reduced to being Public Enemy Number One in the eyes of the British establishment.

After some failed attempts to restore her popularity, which included several public apologies both in the UK and India, her fame and popularity increased once again, when in 2008 Goody was diagnosed with terminal cervical cancer. She died in March 2009, and was literally reborn as a superstar, and her final months became a reality show in and of itself. Similar to the controversy surrounding Michael Jackson, the same fans who instantly turned on their idol were the first to show up at the funeral and various other memorials screaming hysterically for their fallen star. The reason for this is that the emotions of the fans in such cases are completely and brilliantly engineered by the Lords of Perception who won't allow any opportunity to cash in on mass hysteria to go to waste.

THE NOT SO HOSTILE TAKEOVERS

When the underground does develop an independent cultural expression outside the paradigm of the status quo, it is quickly co-opted. Take Hip-Hop, for example. This dynamic urban art form, which bubbled up from the South Bronx in the late 1970's, served as a psychological safety valve for the young people of this community—which had been brutally eviscerated by Robert Moses' fascistic urban planning—creating huge tracts of socio-economic isolation and destitution. Hip-Hop became the emerging folk tradition of these communities and quickly spread into a real force for cultural insurgency among poor African-Americans and other marginalized groups. However, by the late 1980's, it had been transformed into 'Gangsta Rap' by MTV and the record companies who used it to glamourise violence and criminality just in time to fill the growing US prison-industrial complex which needed millions of new inmates to make everything from car license plates to designer jeans. Just business.

There can be no culture unless it is being used to control the perceptions of the masses. We see it in everything from war movies to 'chick-lit'. They sneak in their agenda everywhere. How many people, for instance, are aware that the real statement of James Cameron's almost unwatchable film, Avatar, is not a moving message of humanity's loss of our connection with nature, but is rather: 'if you have resources we want, then NATO is always coming to take it from you...'

Even if you are on another planet.

This pathological subtext has been used in every form of cultural expression from the Turner Prize to Shakespeare, from Sex and the City, Bridget Jones to Lady Gaga. They are striving day and night in order to rebuild a dysfunctional, pathological society craving the latest psychological and emotional panaceas for the 'issues' which the elites engineered within us all to begin with. They do not want us generating our own cultural motifs, or to get there by our own unrestricted creativity. We plebs are far too dangerous to be left to our own creative devices.

However, within the world of popular music, art and literature, there can also be found the keys to unlock the shackles which the Lords of Perception placed upon our minds—knowing how to find them and how to use them to subvert the programming—can become the means to set us all free. We just have to know where and how to look, listen and take action. We can also fill our lives with boundless creativity and a lot of genuine enjoyment along the way. John Lennon and others made the ultimate sacrifice to get the rest of us to think and see the world with a lot more honesty than what is presented to us by the mainstream media.

We all need to look for the hidden and not so hidden secret messages which can be found during this current New Middle Ages. To quote Stephen Daedalus in James Joyce's Ulysses: “Close your eyes and see.”

FIVE: Agents and Magi

And so we are confronted with the problem of freewill. We can argue: do we have free-will, or are all our decisions the manifestations of something that is in-born, plus all our training or conditioning? If a statement is made: "I do not have freewill," two inferences can be made: this statement could be a result of a conditioning, the subject being well-trained to repeat it like a parrot, which makes it devoid of significance; or the subject may claim that he has free-will just to make this statement, which is an arbitrary and self-stultifying statement.”

  • John Carew Eccles from Facing Reality (1970)

As noted in my previous book Defeated Demons, both Sir John Carew Eccles, the Australian neurophysiologist who won the 1963 Nobel Prize for his work on the synapse, along with Canadian neuroscientist Wilder Graves Penfield—who devoted his brilliant career to understanding the functioning of the mind—together, they arrived at the same incredible conclusions: that our conscious minds are not inside our bodies. We (as the conscious self) are simply not inside our own brains, other than a momentary firing of synapses and other neuro-transmitters which are active only in the moment of performing a brain function. From retrieving a memory, to facial recognition of a loved one, and on to processing other aspects of our five-sense reality construct, the neural activity is a fleeting process whereby the 'ghost' or 'agent' arrives into the cerebral partitions from somewhere else.

This non-material aspect of our bodies can be termed everything from the soul to consciousness, to our consciousness observing the universe as it is being created, via an impossible-to-grasp concept involving a kind of cosmic computing software program. Others just simply call it the mind of God.

We will probably never know the answer to this. However, this non-material aspect of our personal identity is a double-edged sword. It has the potential to either create through personal intention, or to be manipulated to create what an exterior influence requires of our intention. We can only presently exist within this five-sense reality, so we had better be careful of what we focus our attention on. There is no end of exterior 'agents' and 'ghosts' constantly, and sometimes perniciously, bombarding our 'machine' with their own agenda.

MOVIE MAGIC

When one first hears the term 'magic', it instantly conjures up images of either Harry Potter movies or stage magicians sawing a young lady in half during a night out at a cabaret show. Most people see magic as a form of entertainment which amuses the viewer with feats of conjuring and sleight-of-hand. Although this is true, magic is also something very serious in its original form and it is not necessarily supernatural, either. Magic was originally referred to as 'the Art' or the 'the Craft', and was intended to bring about changes in human consciousness by placing a spell or charm upon the target.

The idea was to take a plan, design or concept and bring it into reality within the material world. So, for instance: if a builder had an idea in his mind to construct a house, he would first sketch it out on paper, and then, using the raw materials, construct the house which originated in the non-material world as a concept in his mind. This is the most basic definition of the term 'magic'. You are reading this book, created from my mind, using 'magical devices' such as word processors and printing presses—and now you are holding it in your hand as a tangible object. I am using words to put a 'spell' on you, and if you are considering the information contained within, and/or enjoying reading this book, then I have 'charmed' you. Magic. It is as basic as that.

Now let's look at this another way. Suppose I am a marketing executive for a Hollywood film studio. We have just created a blockbuster war movie with the help of the Pentagon, who supplied everything from free attack gunships to tanks for the battle scenes. We have worked out the product placement and script carefully—along with the best looking actors—so that the impressionable American teenager can feel emotionally connected to what he/she witnesses on screen. A couple of weeks later, these teenagers are off to the recruiting office to sign up (a pact), of their own freewill (the Devil always knocks on the front door, and he waits to be asked inside), and in no time, the young man or woman who was inspired by the movie 'magic' is losing his/her legs while guarding a poppy field in a country he/she can't even find on a map.

The war movie has been used to spellbind these people with 'movie magic'—but the decision to become 'patriots' was of their own freewill as he or she entered into a pact with the magicians (the studio and the Pentagon). This is why a good stage hypnotist always asks for a volunteer from the audience, as he knows that the people most susceptible to suggestion will impulsively place their hand in the air. Another pact has been made. It goes on and on, and we see this form of magic and sorcery in everything from advertising to political campaigns.

A major aspect of this spellbinding is to initially depress the target with negative thoughts and emotions. The purpose for this is to lower the levels of dopamine in the target's brain. Dopamine in low levels disrupts the transmission of information between nerve endings in the human brain. This leaves the target open to suggestion. Conversely, if this is suddenly reversed—as in a sense of unexpected joy or relief—the brain floods with too much dopamine and this produces states of psychosis and, in some cases, even hallucinations.

This is why the entertainment industry, as well as politics, are constantly trying to depress and then excite the audience. This dark-light cycle creates dependency within the target so that they will become addicted to the chemical see-saw effect. The horror of the evening TV news always ends with broadcasters telling us a 'feel-good' story, and the last pages of the newspapers are always about sports. Losers and winners, happiness and joy, tragedy and hope—the Grand Chessboard of the Ages goes on and on. 'Vote YES to Economic Recovery...' As Johnny Rotten said at the very last night of the first Sex Pistols tour of the USA, “ever had the feeling you've been had?”—that rhetorical question was being asked of himself—as he knew that Malcolm McLaren and the record companies had used the band members as a kind of wand to cast a socio-cultural spell upon the disgruntled young people of the era, so they would dance to 'God Save the Queen', rather than storm the gates of Parliament.

FUNDAMENTALS OF MAGIC

In order to understand how we are spellbound by the Lords of Perception, we must also understand the basic theory of ritual magic from which concepts such as marketing to advertising to propaganda and sports have all been used to charm the population. This is not to imply that magic is an intrinsically evil process. It is a neutral process, and, depending on the objectives of the magi, can be either good or evil. A great musician can use his or her 'art' or 'craft' to write a beautiful song to convey all that is good in human emotions, even in hard rock music. This can be a kind of shamanic purging of the negative emotions. I once heard Dave Navarro, of the rock bands Jane's Addiction and Red Hot Chili Peppers, say that he took to loud music to—psychologically—drown out the gunshots of his mother's murder at the hands of his stepfather when the guitarist was a teenager. This demonstrates the healing effect of art, and why loud music is so important to the emotional well-being of damaged young people.

The problem which arises today is that magic is almost exclusively in the hands of cheap entertainment, political spin doctors and advertisers. They use this process to keep us trapped within a sense of dependency which feeds their craft, and which does nothing for the human soul and often negatively impacts on the collective human psyche.

Although he was a rather difficult individual who used and manipulated people and situations for his own gratification—only to end up as an impoverished drug addict—Aleister Crowley summed up the theory of magic very well. He referred to magic as the science and art used to cause Change to happen in conformity with Will, and thus causing actual change to occur within the material world. He called magic a 'science' because there are predictable and measurable results from the craft. For instance, designing a large advertising billboard will result in a certain number of people noticing it. Even if only in their peripheral vision, they will still be affected by it. Crowley also referred to magic as an 'art', because some people have a greater level of proficiency and talent than others. Which is why the top advertising artists and executives are on Madison Avenue in New York, while others are in Montgomery, Alabama.

THE FIVE ELEMENTS OF MAGIC

All magical practices—from placing a curse upon an individual (via more traditional types of sorcery) to creating a great novel which will change people's perceptions of themselves and their worldview—all adhere to the same basic magical principles. Generally, there are five aspects of magic which must be followed in order to bring about Change. This is based on the five points of the Pentagram, which also represents the five basic elements: air, fire, water and earth, as well the aether, which represents the spiritual nature of the universe. Change is the objective of the magician or magi—be they a political spin doctor or an advertising executive.

The five principles commonly used are: Motivation, Ritual, Invocation,Medium and the Ensual.

Let's now apply these to an imaginary agenda which might be a typical strategy used by the Lords of Perception and their objectives. We will assume that a new product needs to be brought to market for which there has been no previous demand. So the magicians (product development, marketing executives, public relations, advertising specialists and lobbyists) set about the ritual in order to cause Change in the material world to create a new market for an as yet undeveloped product or concept for which there is currently no demand.

Suppose the objective is to sell more Lithium Salts in order to get the public to accept being medicated with this chemical, as it will be a vital public health concern for their benefit. But the public is wary of taking a pharmaceutical product associated with mental illness. There is a stigma attached to Lithium which is not consumer-friendly. So the Lords of Perception—using techniques developed by magi in previous centuries—will begin to Change the public's perception of Lithium Salts in order to make them accept the product willingly.

Motivation (Intention or Will)

This is the objective itself. The essential and vital expedient which is intended to cause the Change required in the material world. In this example, a major pharmaceutical company has developed a process to produce vast quantities of Lithium Salts cheaply and now needs to develop a mass market for this product. Only so much of the population can be diagnosed as being Bi-Polar, so a new method of selling this mood-stabilizer is now required if the pharmaceutical company is to unload its product. Motivation always begins with a plan to create change in the material world. The first thing required will be to change the name of the product. A team of product development experts will come up with the name SolubriumFX as the new commercial brand name for Lithium Salts, which is to be marketed to a new, non-psychiatric consumer base.

Ritual

This is the action undertaken by the pharmaceutical company that employs marketing, advertising and other resources to generate a major demand for the SolubriumFX and to justify why and how this can be done. At this point, political lobbyists will begin to 'influence' public and other trans-national bodies on the need for more ingestion of Lithium Salt-based 'products' by a larger percentage of the population in order to deal with the global 'epidemic' of suicide.

Invocation

This will be the source of a 'higher power' or 'agent' called upon by the magician in order to bring about the desired result. In this case, it will be carefully selected scientists, politicians, law makers and public health bodies who will be wined and dined, who will receive campaign donations and will be coached by the marketing department of the pharmaceutical company to declare that SolubriumFX, added in small doses to the drinking water supply, is a public health necessity 'in order to save lives!'. They will cite studies by the pharmaceutical company's own scientists which prove conclusively that SolubriumFX added to public water supply reduces suicide by alleviating depression. The politicians will the suggest a test community—usually one with high rates of poverty and socio-economic disadvantage—to run a pilot program in order to demonstrate the effectiveness of adding SolubriumFX to the municipal drinking water supply.

Medium

As politicians are generally distrusted by the public, a medium or the conviction, or emotional desire will be employed. This will be in the guise of people suffering from depression and Bi-Polar Disorder filling our TV screens and other mass media outlets to play upon the emotions of the population. These people will be used to convey to the general public how Lithium Salts—prescribed by their psychiatrist—gave them a better quality of life and eased their mood swings. Likewise, parents of teenagers who committed suicide will be interjected into the reports—with framed photos of their deceased child behind them—as they tell TV reporters 'something must be done before another depressed person takes their own life...'. On commercial TV channels, the pharmaceutical company will often buy up blocks of expensive prime-time advertising space to air commercials for other products they already have on the market, in order to 'influence' the programming directors to do more features on depression and suicide. There will also be a psychopathic aspect to this agenda, as the pharmaceutical company will be well aware that constant news stories and TV reports of suicide generally result in copycat and suicide clustering among emotionally fragile teens. Yes, this is how some of the more psychopathic business types will think; it is that evil in some cases when big money and huge pay cheques are a factor. Just business.

Ensual (or the Outcome)

This is the final Change, which is brought about when the politicians and law makers sign the Mental Health Right to Happiness Act into law and the pharmaceutical directors, along with all the other magicians during the process chain sit back and get their huge bonuses for developing a non-ending income stream based on their original intention.

Although this example—as prosaic and disturbingly plausible as it is—is nothing new, it follows a precedent which had been long set in the past, with everything from DDT to Sodium Fluoride. It may seem strange that I am using terms such as 'magic' and 'ritual'. This is not sensationalism on my behalf, as the Lords of Perception in their own documents use these terms in a very direct and nonchalant manner. This is literally how they function. There are manuals on corporate NeuroLinguistic Programming (NLP) which openly flaunt terms such as 'magic', 'enchantment' and 'charm' in their training modules.

The reason for this is that many of these esoteric ideas—being part and parcel of commercial realities in the modern age—are due to them having originally come out of the Alchemical traditions and Freemasonic lodges in the decades following The Enlightenment and the French Revolution,where the same occult knowledge used to indoctrinate and empower the lodge members was brought out into the legislative and legal bodies, and eventually on to commercial and mercantile practices. Some of the most powerful political and social figures of the twentieth century, such as Edward Bernays (the father of propaganda and public relations) can be viewed as magicians as much as manipulators of human psychology and social identity. Saul Alinsky is another example of a modern magi who dedicated his incredibly influential book Rules for Radicals to Lucifer:

Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history... the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom—Lucifer.”

In actuality, this dedication is not only purposely inflammatory and sensationalist, but as I pointed out in my own book, Puzzling People: the Labyrinth of the Psychopath, the first free-thinking radical in mythology was of course Eve, when she accepted freewill and placed her own sovereign agent or ghost within her own machine. The first freeman was actually a free woman. It wasn't until thousands of years later that the American tobacco giant Phillip Morris employed Edward Bernays to co-opt the Suffragette Movement in order to get women to smoke cigarettes, that the cycle began all over again. Hopefully, it won't take much longer before people develop the cognitive awareness to refuse the Lords of Perception who have trapped us within their own psychopathic capitalistic Eden. However, we can't expect our great minds to lead the way, as many of the movers and shakers of big business—when you take away their greed and egos—can be just as irrational and disorientated as the society they seek constantly to engineer.

MUSIC, THE MOST POWERFUL MAGIC

Science, and in particular Darwinian Evolution, still cannot explain why music has such a powerful effect upon human emotions, or why exposure to the sound of music generates real effects upon our physiology which can be clearly observed and quantified. Listening to music raises the pulse rate, alters our respiratory functioning, can dilate the pupils, as well as cause visible effects on our skin and even increase muscle tone. Human leg muscles before a rock concert become tensed up, similar to that of an athlete about to take part in an event, or a soldier on the cusp of battle. Young children cannot sing without moving their hands and feet in order to synchronize with the tempo of the beat—even when there is no beat. Yet music is a human idea and not part of any natural state. Music is something that we have invented and which has impacted so remarkably upon the human condition.

More profoundly, music also assists in human memory functioning. We can more easily recall the words of songs than we can remember a passage from a book which we may have read in the recent past. This is why advertisers go to great lengths to create the right jingle to sell a product. This has now crossed over to politics, as was demonstrated by the rather unnerving—but highly effective—Obama 2008 election advertisement, which showed school children sing what was essentially a hymn to the future president.

The repetitive use of chanting 'Obama...Obama...Obama...' was an important aspect of conditioning the population to accept the surname which, from an American historical perspective, wasn't very 'apple pie'. You actually have to give credit to the Obama 2008 election committee for the sheer brilliance of the campaign. It literally spellbound not only the American voter, but the entire planet.

The message of the TV commercial set to the singing school children was simple and clear: 'if you are against Obama as President, you are against children and all that is good in the world'. This is absolutely magic—in the true definition of the word—and brilliantly effective in bringing about 'Change' (no coincidence that this term was employed by Obama's spin doctors). The fact that the Republican running mate was a war-mongering lunatic probably also played a major part in helping to get Obama into the White House. Nonetheless, the Obama 2008 election campaign was a masterclass in how the Lords of Perception cause Change within people's minds, which is why Obama also surrounded himself with musicians and pop stars. The inauguration was more akin to a rock concert than a political event in how it was staged. Nobody cared about Obama's policies—he had Bono and Bruce Springsteen singing for him—that was enough for now. This was idol worship straight out of Babylon.

In pre-literate societies, music was used as a tool for storing the traditions of the culture in the collective memory of the tribe. Songs and sonnets are far more effective than prose, as they are more accurately remembered. The reason for this is very significant to much of my own work into culture and consciousness, in that both the music and lyrics of a song are retained and processed within both the right and left hemispheres of the brain. In their 2006 study, the team of Brown, Martinez and Parsons showed that both the lyrics and melodies of songs created activation within the:

Primary Motor Cortex

(corresponds to complex body movements)

Supplementary Motor Area (the 'monkey brain')

(associated with arm and leg movements)

Broca’s Area

(processes language comprehension)

Basal Ganglia

(controls the integration of eye movements with location in virtual space)

Thalamus

(regulation of consciousness, sleep, and alertness)

Cerebellum

(regulates motor control, fear and pleasure responses, attention and language)

This makes the musician, songwriter and performer potentially the most potent of all the magi, and as I have previously mentioned, the political and commercial elite pay very careful attention to what musical trends develop and how they affect the population. This idea is hardly new. In Republic, Plato quotes Socrates:

And therefore, I said, Glaucon, musical training is a more potent instrument than any other, because rhythm and harmony find their way into the inward places of the soul, imparting grace, and making the soul of him who is rightly educated graceful . .”

PHOSPHENES AND THE PRISONERS' CINEMA

Have you ever noticed how so many corporate and other logos share very similar shapes and designs? That some geometric patterns come up over and over again? Isn't it interesting that out of the myriad of various shapes and designs which could be used in logos—especially now in the age of desktop publishing and complex graphic design—that most logos still tend to be rather simple designs? The reason for so many corporations and government agencies using triangles, stars and ovals is because they are archetypal shapes, or 'neurological form constants' generated inside the human brain.

The same logos of the major corporations can be found on cave art from tens of thousands of years ago—and are found all over the world. David Lewis-Williams and T. A. Dowson published an article in 1988, demonstrating that the non-figurative art of the Upper Paleolithic period depicts actual visions of what are known as phosphenes. Given this term by the Greeks (which translates as 'light show'), it is the experience of seeing light without an exterior light source entering the human eye.

Also referred to as Prisoner's Cinema, as it has been experienced by inmates held in darkness for long periods of time, the phenomenon consists of a 'light show' of various shapes that appear out of the darkness which are generated by the firing of cells within the partitions of the brain associated with the optic nervous system. It has long been noted that certain shapes have a powerful psychological effect upon human beings more so than other shapes have. Consider the five pointed star symbol of fame—or an individual being a Hollywood 'star'—as well as its connection with military insignia and war. From Algeria to the United States, the five pointed star appears on national flags representing nations and cultures of often diametrically opposed economic, political and cultural philosophies. The irony of the Cold War being that the belligerents on either side—USA and Soviet Marxism—both used the five pointed star as symbols of their military and political might.

The five pointed star, along with the triangle, the so called 'celtic cross', the circle with a dot inside and the single eye shape have all been constants in human art and graphics appearing on ancient cave walls the world over. They have evolved into the corporate logos of today because they are rooted within the deep archetypal aspects of human psychology. They spellbind us and affect us deeply via both poles of cognitive functioning; consciously and subconsciously.

Within social psychology, this instinctual recognizing of certain shapes and designs is referred to as The Familiarity Principle. This is also a core principle within advertising and marketing. When viewing archetypal (phosphene in origin) shapes—they instantly feel familiar to us—even if we have not previously encountered them by looking at them directly with our own eyes. We are already 'familiar' with these designs from our dreams and lying awake at night in the dark.


Interestingly, the Polish social psychologist Robert Zajonc observed that exposure to a novel stimulus initially creates a trepidation and avoidance in humans (and other mammals). However, with each repeated exposure to the new shape or design, the observer will begin to react fondly to the previously novel stimulus. However, it appears that with visual stimuli based on phosphene archetypes, the observer will accept the stimuli more readily. These shapes reach deep into the core of our archetypal personalities and hence, why they are so commonly used as political insignia and corporate logos and probably always will be. Such is their powerful effect upon the observer.

COGNITIVE DISSONANCE AT THE SHAREHOLDERS MEETING

Just before World War One—which still remains the most significant turning point in the history of the world—the Behaviorism movement began when the American psychologist John Broadus Watson presented his paper: Psychology as the Behaviorist Views It. In this highly influential article, Watson stated that classical conditioning was able to explain all aspects of human psychology. That there is no mind or consciousness as such, and that all human behavior, from our five sense interaction with the world around us—including our emotions—are exclusively physiological and neurological stimuli and response based. We are simply organic robots made up of flesh and organs, and there is no 'ghost' in the machine. His most famous quote is:

Give me a dozen healthy infants, well-formed, and my own specified world to bring them up in and I'll guarantee to take any one at random and train him to become any type of specialist I might select - doctor, lawyer, artist, merchant-chief and, yes, even beggar-man and thief, regardless of his talents, penchants, tendencies, abilities, vocations and the race of his ancestors”.

At the time, Watson's ideas went very much hand-in-hand with the emergence of Socialism as a real political movement; that all humans are essentially biological machines and their own lives and existences were of no significant consequence beyond the needs of the entire community. However, this idea of everyone being potentially an empty vessel waiting to be filled with learned behaviors was also being embraced by American capitalism, which had witnessed the stagnation of European industrial and commercial might, mainly due to the class system producing more and more idiot grandsons from constant inbreeding among the aristocrats. There has always been a strange and telling interdependence between Socialism and the residents of Stately Homes—when the super rich—devise Marxist solutions to the problem of the poor being an unfortunate result of their beloved class system.

However, there was nothing essentially new in Watson's theory. The Jesuits were proposing and successfully implementing this same concept for centuries. Waton's theory gave the concept scientific grounding by pointing to the work of the brilliant Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov, who demonstrated that behavior is learned through the process of association. For example: two stimuli being linked, such as causing a dog to salivate each time a bell is rung, as the dog had already been been previously conditioned to recognize that its feeding time coincided with the sound of a bell ringing.

Direct communication among modern humans cannot be considered a scientific activity. The problem with this approach is that what works with a dog or perhaps an infant does not necessarily work with a mature adult. The reason for this is that by the time we reach adulthood—especially in this modern commercial age—we have a very specific reward system which goes beyond the basic requirements of that of a dog salivating over a soon-to-be-delivered piece of meat. Mainly as a result of advertising and a sense that we deserve the best, a kind of cognitive dissonance manifests, whereby most modern humans hold all their attitudes and beliefs in balance and avoid disharmony, even if they are risking so much by doing this. Humans have been conditioned by the Lords of Perception to always hold out for the fairytale ending, or the hero riding in at the last moment to save the day.

TELL ME THE GOOD NEWS FIRST,
AND THEN GIVE ME THE GOOD NEWS...

Between 1991 and 2004, I worked as a graphic designer and communications consultant for some of the largest and most powerful corporations in the world, in both a staff and freelance capacity. The diversity of my employment within these globalist corporations was a valuable education in just how global marketing and communications function, in terms of its brilliant ability to manipulate human consciousness through the marketing of often non-material, ephemeral and, at times, completely useless products and services. Regardless of the pitch being anything from consumer products to corporate takeovers of previously nationalised industries and services, the underlying methodology was always the same: the selling of dreams and unconditional illusions (and often delusions).

At the core of this marketing is the often astounding ability which top-level consultants and marketers seem to have: to convey data with a simple yet highly effective sleight-of-hand which would make the most skilled stage magician proud. A form of hypnosis in the guise of slick presentations and phrasing. An almost uncanny skill to present actual hard facts and data—and yet not present them—at the same time. The ability to blur the perception of the target audience to lead them into trusting a corporate report or shareholders' summary, even when the slick document they are holding in their hand says very little in terms of what the reader is looking at, or indeed requires.

The budget for these corporate reports and other marketing tools is often enormous. The procurement of everything from the correct graphical presentations, stock photography and even down to the paper and binding of the documents is given meticulous attention to detail. Why go to all this expense and trouble to say what should be stated in an obvious and matter-of-fact manner? Because the corporate/political 'bling' factor works, as the clever folk who produce these slick documents and presentations are well aware: that even the most astute and conservative shareholder or investor is more likely to be wooed by slick and emotional imagery than hard facts. The investment in everything from designers, marketers, consultants and all the technical resources from expensive printing services to luxury hotel ballrooms, to state-of-the-art video and CGI services pays for itself in the flood of feel-good hormones, which it releases into the brain of the target.

The product may be a floundering steel mill in India, or a savage restructuring of an automotive factory in Canada, but the real product which the slick marketers and consultants are trading in is not shares or cash; it is hormones and endorphins which are used to keep the shareholders happy, even when they have little reason to be. Everything from serotonin, which regulates the moods while relieving depression and makes you feel happy, to reducing dopamine levels, causing a lack of attention and concentration, are vital if the fine print in the report is nothing to be smiling about.

Dopamine can be released by eating foods that are rich in protein. Along with the carefully selected graphics, color schemes and the overall positive nature of these AGMs or EGMs given by attractive and confident consultants and marketers, certain foods will also be provided to the attendees to make them more agreeable to their hosts. The selection of the menus at these events is also given great attention. There will always be chocolate desserts on offer to the attendees, as cocoa contains phenylethamine, which is a hormone that is released when we fall in love. The most attractive men and women from the company will be brought along to mingle with the shareholders, and if there are none on hand, they will be procured from acting and modeling agencies to provide a healthy display of 'eye-candy' to distract from the often mundane financial returns and profits being announced. The shareholders or attendees will be manipulated with such a subtle and finite skill that they will be unaware that they are being manipulated at all.

When all is said and done, we are dealing with a neuro-chemical assault on the target audience. Nobody wants to believe that they invested in an under-performing company or stock. The Lords of Perception know well that people who consider themselves more educated and smarter than the 'Average Joe' would much prefer to have their intellectual and business savvy serviced and validated than to accept that they are not as smart an investor as they assume they are. Even when it comes to potentially bankrupting the client, their pride will be the last thing they will want to see tarnished. Now you know why corporations and industries are often run into the ground by presenting dreams of success, rather than cold hard commercial realities, and why some shareholders would prefer to see their pension funds evaporate rather than admit they made a mistake.

However, this delusion of being the brilliant hotshot investor, even when the bank is foreclosing on your assets, is not something that comes about overnight. In the same way a drug addict does not become hooked with the first few 'hits', dependency must be created first. This dependency must be made addictive to the point when the shareholders can be conditioned to hold out for one last 'hit', even when all is logically lost. The release of reward hormones, brought about by flipping through the slick corporate or shareholders' report, with its classy feel and images of attractive people walking along a beach, are the drugs which override common sense. Often, this line of presentation can be absurd to the point of insulting the target audience.

There were projects I worked on where I thought to myself, “this will never fly!” and yet it did. One involved a brochure for a healthcare provider which was aimed at employees of a certain company, concerning the benefits that they could avail of if they switched to this plan, which the directors were foisting upon the staff. The brochure showed an attractive young woman in a yoga position with the slogan Alternative Therapy and Your Working Life. The document was designed to imply that if the staff changed over to this plan, they could avail of all kinds of alternative treatments outside the typical healthcare provider package.

However, buried in small print at the back of the brochure was a disclaimer which stated that the healthcare provider does not cover the costs of alternative treatments, but if the plan member seeks alternative treatments such as yoga, this would not impact on their healthcare deductibles. The brochure worked as soon as most staff beheld the image of the woman in the yoga position on the cover, they were in. Another similar project I worked on was for a pension provider, which showed an elderly client painting a scene above a tropical bay. The pension plan went bust in no time, and the only painting the plan members undertook was the wall painting of their own homes, as they could no longer afford a decorator to do it for them.

SCALES OF DECEPTIONS AND DELUSIONS

By far, the most deceptive application of the target's consciousness in a business and government sense is the manipulation of visual graphs to imply greater gains and profits than is the actual case. This was one of the first tricks of the trade that I was schooled in. When it was first shown to me, I found it hard to believe that anyone could fail to see that they were being deceived, but this was before I came to understand that most people are trained to deceive themselves. People want and prefer the reward hormones in their brains more than a dose of reality. Consider the following charts below as a simple but very common example of how the business and government dream-makers use sleight-of-hand magic to lead us towards assumptions which are what we would like to believe, rather than what we need to know.

The two graphs I have included here are based on the profit projections of an imaginary company which is just about to be presented to their shareholders and staff in the form of a glossy and professionally designed and printed Annual Report. These documents all follow the same basic format. At the start of the document will be the Executive Summary, which is basically a propaganda waffle about how overall performance is doing, presented as proof of the company's stability. If the results are showing modest growth, it will be presented as a win-win situation in order to boost morale and keep the shareholders on board, waiting for the eventual big pay day. Although there is a more sinister and pathological nature to these misleading reports, even modest or zero growth will safeguard salary increases and bonuses for senior executives.

Hence, why in the present scheme of things we have senior management—across all private and public sectors—enjoying colossal salaries, bonuses and remuneration packages which would have been unheard of forty years ago. The justification for these massive salaries for CEOs and other senior executives is the illusion of eternal growth and reward, even when in plain black and white (which is never the case) there is no certainty or even proof of such events happening. The sales pitch is the delusion.

In his eye-opening and surprisingly witty examination of problematic data, Darrell Huff's How To Lie With Statistics is a fascinating read which gives an insight into how, by playing with the numbers and getting creative with the graphics, you can literally have the target viewership believing that white is black and black is white. In clinical psychology terms, this is known as Gaslighting. The term is derived from the title of a classic Hollywood movie entitled Gaslight, as a means to describe how pathological individuals and structures alter reality around their targets, undermining their psychological sovereignty and, in extreme cases, eventually their sanity. This modus gives the manipulators absolute control over the target to the point where they are dependent upon the manipulator to help them understand and survive in a false reality construct created for them to be trapped within.

As previously outlined in my book, Puzzling People: the Labyrinth of the Psychopath, the term Gaslighting has thus come to represent mind control abuse, in which false information is presented to the target, altering their sense of reality and destroying faith in their own discernment. So, as the target's cognitive performance is reduced, it results in feelings such as self-doubt and confusion. This is precisely the methodology in which the corporate and bureaucratic Lords of Perception present data, deceptively displayed with graphs—that are not incorrect or fraudulent in their information—rather, it is the manner and formatting of the data which misleads.

DECODING THE GRAPHICAL GASLIGHTING

When I first became aware of this statistical trickery, I assumed that I would be admonished by my superiors for essentially sabotaging the integrity of a document with falsely manipulated and distorted graphical presentations. The opposite happened. In one company, I was encouraged to alter the data to 'tart it up'. At other companies, it was akin to an unspoken rule. The basic methodology is the Y by X Axis method, by which the scales are generally reduced—but not obviously so—to make line graphs appear more vertical in nature. Along with this would be the use of interpretive language in graph titles: terms such as 'substantial' or 'impressive' are designed to influence the target. However, this is generally too crude, so distortions and distractions are created using the corporations' slogans and other trickery, such as altering fonts and adding emotive images in the background along the lines of empty highways stretching out into the distance. The agenda is to sensationalise the results without making this sensationalism obvious.

Another recent discovery was made at the Research Department at the University of Chicago (Lyons and Beilock), which gave credibility to the long-suspected concept that mathematical obsession and worries are a kind of non-experienced physical trauma. The research team discovered that the brain partitions concerned with anxiety surrounding mathematical problems, sums, equations and calculations crosses over into the same brain areas that alert us to the potential dangers to our physical well-being. The study was conducted with volunteers under an fMRI machine, which examines brain activity during specific tasks. The scans not only clearly demonstrated that confronting a mathematical experience caused a response in the subjects' cerebral partitions akin to physical pain, but it is also proof of tangible, detrimental psychological reactions to the prospect of even considering a mathematical objective. This explains why so many people would rather be willingly deceived by a superficial feel-good graph and report than sitting down and coming face to face with the hard numbers of any business document, for fear that it might tell them what they are not willing to confront.

Hormonal fluctuations and reactions are key to this manipulation, resulting in people ending up either bankrupt or serving time in prison, rather than confronting the reality of the hard numbers. The PR and marketing gurus know this all too well, and they will hide the horrors among the feel-good presentations. Pay careful attention to government documents, as these techniques are used constantly to throw the population into either states of depression or potential reward, depending on what the policy objective at the time dictates.

SIX: When the Real Story Returns

As an artist and musician myself, this book is hardly a tirade against the popular culture we have all been exposed to. As stated in the introduction, this is not a polemic where I am suggesting that you, the reader, should disassociate yourself with certain forms of art, music, literature and so on. Far from it. I want the reader to explore and look at all culture, and the world in general, with new and opened eyes. However, it remains a fact that cultural trends (and just about everything else) are commodities of one kind or another—composed of dynamic and changing/upgraded product lines—which are being marketed towards us all for profit firstly, and then social engineering. We have to learn how to find the culture which truly resonates within us and elevates and enhances our personal experience as human beings. If your thing is conceptual art, then good for you—as long as you are sincerely emotionally, intellectually and spiritually connected to the work—and are not just pretending to be in order to look 'cool', 'cultured' and 'enlightened'.

So, how do we develop selective and critical appraisal of external stimuli handed to us by the Lords of Perception? What do we allow in, and what do we keep out? What inputs do we allow into our consciousness? For me personally, it has come down to two things: personal intuition, and some kind of mass smear campaign against an artist or idea—based purely on distracting from the idea itself—is sometimes a good indicator that we are being told to keep our attention off something which the Lords of Perception do not want us to engage with or look at objectively.

Conversely, anything which they constantly shove in our faces—in which hype and sensationalism appear to be the defining impetus—is probably something we need to avoid, or at least objectively examine and process before we incorporate it into our consciousness. The underground and the cultural outskirts are generally where real spiritual, noetic and cultural insight is born. Often, when it is really vital and powerful, the Lords of Perception will trivialize and commericalise the soul of the movement for their own ends.

Vital art and culture—the kind that speaks to the soul of the human experience—needs no hype. Its potential is self-evident. Its originality is startling. However, it often takes years for it to simmer up from the underground. Altering our perception and learning to see things from different viewpoints, rather than the obvious narrative or aesthetic, can reveal the true meaning below the surface. This can also enhance the richness of our own personal participation with the material world. In other words, if we can examine every aspect of our lives with both the right and left hemispheres of our brain, we get to see the real message and can avoid having any agenda placed within our consciousness.

THE CRITICAL MASS

As is the case with nearly every true work of literary genius, the population of the time—and in particular, the citizens of the homeland of the novelist—remains blissfully unaware, or even disdaining of the individual who may have produced one of their nation's greatest cultural masterpieces. This strange paradox generally comes about because the true artist holds up a mirror to not only the beauty and goodness, but also, all the ugliness and failings of their native land and the inhabitants therein. Great works of art are morally neutral, and neither seek to shock or charm their intended audience.

Meaningful art that touches the soul of the viewer, the reader, or the movie watcher is never minimalist, nor is it designed to incite shock simply for shock's sake. It does not have to, because it is already meaningful by virtue of the fact that it directly plunges the observer into the denied abyss of their own guilt, shame and failures. Sometimes its effect can literally torment the soul of an entire nation. Not because it feels a duty to do this, but because the expression is a result of repressed darkness and hidden evils of the society. It has to be purged. As Carl Jung stated:

The Shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego-personality, for no one can become conscious of the Shadow without considerable moral effort. To become conscious of it involves recognising the dark aspects of the personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any kind of self-knowledge, and it therefore, as a rule, meets with considerable resistance.”

Staring at one's personal and/or collective Shadow is perhaps one of the most psychologically cleansing undertakings that we can indulge in, both personally and as a society. It is also one of the most difficult tasks for most human beings to even consider doing. We spend our entire lives being love bombed by advertisers selling us products we don't need, and by politicians making us promises they won't deliver. Humans have been conditioned to see themselves as an on-going work-in-progress on the road to some kind of eventual perfection. All we have to do is buy the right stuff and say the right things along the way and we'll get there. Maybe.

Only in the darkness of one's soul, or upon visceral personal reflection, can the flickering light of the unpolluted psyche be unleashed and thus made conscious. Taking this one step further, there is nothing wrong with artistic discourse, mass media and even religion forcing us to stare into the darkness of our own emotional and psychological labyrinth. The problem arises when the journey into the Shadow becomes purposeless and morbid for morbidity's sake. Then, there is no transcendence. There is no redemption. Art should only seek to shock the audience in order to allow the audience to explore and possibly wake up the dormant aspects of the psyche; not to make the artist infamous and/or notorious.

A horror movie or novel only has value if it is cleansing the psychology through the unfolding and turbulent resolution of the narrative. Take the movie The Exorcist, for example. This is, at its very core, a touching story of unconditional love for the innocence of a child who becomes possessed by a demonic entity after playing with an Ouija Board—in which complete strangers (two Catholic priests) are willing to die to save this child. On the other hand, movies such as Saw unleash nothing positive in terms of an underlying metaphor of transcendence. They are simply shock art—they pose no questions. This appears to be the only kind of negative soul-searching we are allowed.

The Lords of Perception allow us into the nightmare, but they demand a ransom to allow us to wake up again. Movies such as The Exorcist came from a golden age of Hollywood during the 1970's, where directors were actually making movies which were of value to the collective human experience. Then ET came along and we were trivialized back into the control system, the fantasy, the off-planet beings who might come back and save us from ourselves one day. Maybe.

THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE, IF IT ACCIDENTALLY SLIPS OUT

Now and again, the Lords of Perception take their eye off the ball and real works of meaningful art slip under the radar. We are conditioned to never be able to handle the truth. When the truth does slip out, the messenger is called a traitor, a degenerate and a menace to 'decent society'.

Such is the case with Hubert Selby Jr's remarkable 1964 novel Last Exit to Brooklyn, which is perhaps the greatest work of modern fiction by an American author, and one of the most spiritually uplifting narratives set in a world saturated with whores, transvestites, bisexuals and a seemingly endless plethora of malcontents and ordinary losers. The story takes place in and around the dysfunctional and often meaningless existences of people living under the shadow of the Brooklyn Navy Yard during the early 1950's.

The book, upon its initial publication, was savaged by critics and moral guardians alike. Billy Graham, the superstar evangelist, literally declared war on the novel and its author in the much the same manner as previous pulpit superstars did upon Sinclair Lewis in 1926 when he wrote the satirical novel Elmer Gantry. Graham, similar to other preachers when confronted with reality, hid his true motives for the attack behind platitudes of 'indecency' and 'immorality'. What really terrified the reactionary bible-thumping Christian cleric and others like him was that Hubert Selby Jr managed to put more spirituality into the pages of his incredibly dark and disturbing Last Exit to Brooklyn than any evangelical minister could possibly hope to put into a mega church sermon. Why? Because Last Exit to Brooklyn showed the reader that through darkness and misery there can be the most meaningful shortcut to the soul.

Last Exit to Brooklyn is a prime example of what the control grid does not want us to think and feel deeply about—that more often than not, the only worthy redemption is in the misery and trauma of human earthly existence—and, like it or not, we need to find this salvation by ourselves alone. No pastor can lead you there, and no psychiatrist has a clue where to even point in this direction beyond writing out another prescription. You have no choice but to carry your own cross on the final journey towards your own psyche's resurrection and salvation. Often, it involves great personal suffering; sometimes it can be a seemingly pointless death. But therein lies the ultimate secret that the Lords of Perception labor day and night to keep us from becoming conscious of: When Life is Miserable, it is then You Start Living.

However, the Lords of Perception have always sought to make us believe that suffering and pain are only precursors to therapy and products; from anti-depressants to religion. We are never told that there is a difference between a vision and dream. A vision is reality, a dream is a delusion, and they have all kinds of entertainment dream factories to prevent us from attaining that meaningful vision which might actually wake us up.

Last Exit to Brooklyn also broke convention in much the same manner as James Joyce had previously done earlier in the last century, by changing the nature of language, syntax and grammar to literally beat the reader into the lives of the characters. The New York Times trashed this unique approach when the book was first published, although in typical liberal style, they now sing its praises, mainly because most Americans have not only not read Last Exit to Brooklyn, but have no idea that it even exists. Ah, the cache of elitism... The other side of the cultural deception. Under no circumstances should you say that the Turner Prize is a joke, lest you betray your ignorant and uncultured self.

If they did read Last Exit to Brooklyn, most Americans—even in the twenty first century—would be shocked at the image the book paints of the underbelly of American urban life which is so far removed from the white picket fences and Norman Rockwell-illustrated covers of the Saturday Evening Post. There is no happy ending to the novel—well, not on the surface that is. No hero gets saved except for one profound moment of some deep spiritual insight, when the lying and thieving prostitute TraLaLa, after a night of being subjected to a drunken gang bang by dozens of US servicemen and various waterfront lowlifes, is saved by the teenage boy to whom she showed encouragement and subtle affection earlier on in the week. Her one act of decency to a teenage boy resulted in a whore being saved from being raped to death by the swarming drunks and degenerates in and around the Brooklyn Navy Yard. A Mary Magdalene of the Beat Generation, except that this whore was too realistic to be accepted.

TASTES AND OPINIONS

We are constantly being culturally divided. We are told to pick sides and then maintain that self-delusion of being 'cultured', 'moral', 'edgy', 'respectable', 'raunchy' and 'restrained'. In all these cases, the label is a lie. We are all—as mortal humans—capable of degeneracy and salvation, and we often move through these states without even knowing it, every day of our lives. At the end of the day, we then sit down to watch the 700 Club or the Playboy Channel, convinced that everyone else is either immoral or uptight. We never stop to think why we make these assumptions.

The answer is straight-forward enough: we have been given personal identity products which are as artificial as we are; either screaming 'Hallelujah!' at the TV evangelist or masturbating to the silicone implants of this month's Playmate. It's all the same thing when the cul-de-sac of one's existence comes terrifyingly into view. Once you pay the bill at the end of the month and stop thinking for yourself, then the control grid and their Lords of Perception will provide you with just enough choices to keep you feeling that you have a choice, except for the choice that allows you to actually think for yourself. That's not an option.

THE CULTIVATION OF THE ETERNAL CHILD

So where does meaningful art end, and pop culture begin? And furthermore, why do we even have pop culture and not just an on-going continuation of the developing, diverse human culture which has been in existence ever since early humans first took soot and red ochre off the floors of caves and began to paint a new layer of human social evolution? To understand the answer to this question, we have to understand where and why and how modern pop culture began. In the early 1920's, propaganda began a relationship with advertising and they had a child, which today we have come to call Pop Culture. At the moment of the conception of this offsping, that which previously had no spiritual value became priceless, and that which had spiritual value became obsolete, and the world was never going to be the same ever again.

BENIGN VERSUS PATHOLOGICAL NARCISSISM

Every single human being on this planet is narcissistic to one degree or another—all of us. Anyone who says they are not is either delusional or lying. The narcissistic aspect of our personality is the reason why we put our best photos up on social media, our most flattering self image to the world, and why we all seek accolades and affection. There is a chemical reward system within our neurology which seeks praise and adoration. Some people are less narcissistic than others, but no one is immune from wanting, on some level, to be adored and admired for the way they look or for their achievements.

Our narcissism is the same reason why we exercise, try to lose weight, feel pride in our accomplishments and generally say to the rest of the world: “hey, look at me...”. More likely than not, there is a very real evolutionary mandate to this benign narcissism contained within all humans. Women want to look beautiful (healthy and fertile) to attract a mate who is hopefully compatible in order to maximise the more healthy sets of genes in both to be passed on to the next generations. Coupled with this is that we also like to feel good about ourselves.

Without narcissism, we would have been deprived of the talents and gifts that the likes of Muhammad Ali and Bruce Lee gave to the human experience—making life that much more interesting. Ali really was 'the Greatest', and this was not hubris and his part; this is a fact. He did not fail miserably—he went on to be the greatest, and when he retired, he devoted his life to charity.

Bruce Lee is another example of someone who could be initially considered as a fame-hungry egomaniac. However, step back and just consider what this man achieved in his short life, and how he did it all by himself using his own talents and abilities. He arrived in the USA from Hong Kong at a time when Chinese and most non-whites were considered sub-human in the Land of the Free. Within a decade, he had not only revolutionized the image of the Oriental male in the USA and all across the globe, but he did it by proclaiming that he was not going to act out some culturally subservient role which he was expected to fulfill.

In his greatest movie, Enter the Dragon, he more or less shows us this metamorphism which he created for himself and Chinese culture in the West during the famous hall of mirrors scene. Lee, while trying to defeat the shifty and evil Han (who represented the Western negative stereotypes of Orientals) finds himself looking for the location of Han, only to find himself confused by the mirrors all around him. It is such a symbolic scene that Bruce Lee is telling us: that only by virtue of his own ego/narcissism—symbolically portrayed as reflections in the hall of mirrors—could he defeat the traditional image of the stereotypical 'Chinaman'. The shattering of the mirrors which results in the defeat of Han symbolizes that even though Bruce Lee strove to be a Hollywood star, there was a means to an end which was far greater than the narcissism he utilized in order to get there. In this context, narcissism can be seen as almost a transformative and even a spiritual idea.

In The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, Deepak Chopra talks about The Law of Dharma, and how using our talents while serving others is the only worthwhile path to success. Both Muhammad Ali and Bruce Lee would be examples of this concept. They both sought glory, fame and fortune while neither were shy about this drive for stardom. However, on the other hand, they both ultimately used it to serve humanity as a whole by bringing about greater understanding and mutual appreciation of different cultures and spiritual traditions. In effect, narcissism leading to positive social and cultural change.

Someone somewhere has to lead the charge. In recent years, this healthy form of narcissism has been given a bad rap and is often confused with sociopathic and psychopathic behavior. These two states are not in any way connected. A woman who strives to be the most beautiful bride of all on her wedding day is not generally pathological. This is her 'special day', and she wants it to be remembered for all the right reasons. That's if she can find someone 'perfect' enough to marry. The Lords of Perception lie to people constantly, telling them to hold out for the 'special one', and that all casual relationships on the way there are just for sex—fuck buddies—until the fuck buddies become stale and devoid of meaning. Far too many people these days actually believe advertising slogans telling them that they deserve 'the best'. The Lords of Perception will provide you with any delusion you desire, once you are willing to pay them for it.

This delusion is, once again, essentially an addiction to hormones and chemicals in the brain. People are conditioned to confuse infatuation with real love. This craving and eventual burnout is the reason for so many divorces these days. Everyone has been trained to assume that being an eternal lovesick teenager for the duration of their lives is normal. It isn't.

MAKING THE BRAIN A JUNKIE

A compliment from a stranger releases the dopamine in our brains and can literally change our entire mood. Fantastic early relationship dynamics, and especially 'make-up sex' after arguments can be intoxicating to a woman's oxytocin receptors in her brain, as they are charged up like a power station to full capacity. But these are fleeting, ephemeral sensations. They do not last; they are intended only to be transitory. However, these chemical reward systems in the human brain serve a very real evolutionary purpose, also. Nature wants us to be passively narcissistic and wants us feeling good about the decisions and choices we make in our lives when we are given accolades by others. If we get caught in the trap of seeking perfection in everything from ourselves to our interaction with other people, we are essentially doomed. Unfortunately, this has now become a growing trend in the modern age, as advertising and reality shows have rewired the human being to be something it was never meant to be.

YOUR REACTION IS THE WEAKEST LINK IN PSYCHE

Pathological narcissism, on the other hand, is one of the most destructive human traits—both personal and social—in terms of the damage that this state of mind can unleash. The difference between benign and pathological narcissism is similar to the difference between an opium poppy in a field and all the factors which transforms that poppy into an AIDS-tainted syringe of low-grade smack being injected into a junkie's arm in some downtown 'shooting gallery'. When the narcissistic trait in humans is not only indulged by the Lords of Perception, but has also been turbo-charged and celebrated as a symbol of the only avenue to one's personal empowerment, it becomes as much a method of slavery and death in the psychology of the individual as the heroin in the veins of a hopeless addict.

This is now the main agenda of the control grid—employing the Lords of Perception—in an attempt to make us all pathologically narcissistic and self-destructive. The profit motive again is the only agenda and always has been; to excavate as much financial and energetic quarry out of the population as they can possibly harvest. Emotions, insecurities and manufactured expectations are the collateral. We are 'human resources' to be exploited. This represents nothing other than a strategic engagement with the bulk of humanity which is not driven by anything other than supply and demand. They supply the fixes, as we demand more and more solutions to the narcissistic and reactionary cavity engineered inside us where our souls should be.

Many of us have experienced people that we have known, respected and loved seemingly metamorphism—almost overnight—into self-absorbed dandies and drama queens. Sometimes they attain the trappings of huffy middle-aged folks who turn into self-centered, infantile adults, diving headlong into the so-called mid-life crisis like a stone thrown into a tranquil pool of predictable water. Once balanced, measured and healthy people who have literally been transformed into 'someone else', and we often are at a loss to explain it. The explanation is in how external factors and influences impact upon the actual structure of the human brain.

In many cases, the neural networks of some people have been literally rewired to Change them into a kind of media-driven automaton. It is the same reason why we notice our friends and family members change when they become part of a new group or social dynamic. Not only do they start to emulate the 'group-think', but their entire personality and even their physiology changes.

EPIGENETICS

Towards the end of his life, Edward Bernays, the so-called father of public relations and propaganda, was reported to have stated that when people inquired how he managed to live in such incredible wealth and opulence—following a life of imposing extraneous values on the masses—his reply was, “most people are idiots”.

The fact of the matter is that most people are not idiots. Most people are being cultivated into being reactionary robots filled with insecurities and failings, courtesy of the control grid. The average consumer has been manufactured—via years of conditioning—into a self-realised receptacle of fake ideals, goals and attributes given to them to aspire towards. However, this psychological imposition has very real physiological alterations on human brain chemistry and structure. In recent times, the field of Epigenetics has given scientific credence to the notion that with every thought we have implanted in our minds, there is a very real biological cause and effect.

The field of Epigenetics is the study of changes in gene expression phenotypes, caused by mechanisms other than changes in the underlying DNA sequence. This includes modifications to the genome that do not result in a change in basic nucleotide sequence. Essentially, this means that the brain is a product of factors outside the genetic predisposition construct, and that the human brain may be constructed as much by thoughts and opinions as it is a product of biological evolution.

ENGAGING WITH HYPE AND SENSATIONALISM

If our thoughts do, in fact, fabricate or alter parts of our brain structure, then we have to develop a more personally responsive model of how we deal with information being presented to us. The mainstream media has known that we can be altered according to hype and sensationalism for decades. This is why, at the end of news broadcasts, we get the 'feel good' story: to give the viewer a rush of dopamine to off-set the adrenalin and other stress hormones from watching the bad news. The TV news programme is also read by attractive 'eye candy', which hooks the viewer by shooting straight for the libido as soon as the credits and dramatic music fades out.

This is passively-induced trauma, and is very similar to how cults control their members. They are love bombed at first, then the 'love' (dopamine) after an initial honeymoon period stops, and the individual will do literally anything to get back that feeling of being 'loved'. The reason why the main TV newscasts are at regular times during the day is because we need regular adrenaline and dopamine medication. This is not done by accident. This is all planned and all designed to turn the viewer into a junkie in search of a constant fix.

When it comes to 24-hour news channels, the effect is somewhat different. A sense of dependency on information is cultivated in the viewer; that some really important event might 'break' at any moment and will be of vital importance to the audience. In this situation, a sense of hyper-vigilance is the key to maintain an audience. The flashing 'BREAKING' logos which continually appear on the screen keep the viewer 'tuned in'. This is only possible using hype and sensation, and this is a co-dependency we all have to break free from.

The 'OMG!' response is not a natural reaction for human beings. In the wild, this would have gotten us eaten within seconds. This hysteria is a result of modern humans not being able to regulate our emotions as well as we should. We are encouraged to fly from one extreme to the next. Hence, when processing this information given to us, we have to learn to deal with it with less hysteria and more critical examination. The following graph illustrates how this can be done. Keep your emotions between the dotted lines. You'll find it improves your own quality of life and you'll become less stressful when confronted with any challenging stimuli.

THE DREAM CATCHER IN THE STY

The Lords of Perception love creating events for the masses to pin their hopes upon. The desire to flood their brains with dopamine and adrenaline in perennial anticipation of the next big entertainment event is meant to keep us under their spell. The masses have been conditioned to eternally seek another fix of Oscars, Superbowl Half Time Shows, World Cups and cosmic reality shows such as the highly engineered 2012 Mayan Long Count end-date of December 21st, 2012—a fictional event which was developed to service a kind of superficial spiritual hysteria in the more 'spiritually' inclined masses waiting for alien spacecraft driven by cosmic unicorns to arrive on the planet and provide lightworkers (translation: Servants of Lucifer) with the one thing they are the most terrified of: having to think for themselves and take control of their own lives.

There is no difference between some middle-aged, divorced and disgruntled suburban 'witch' casting spells (that do not work) on her ex-husband and some massively obese man sitting in front of the TV cheering for a sports team—which he is so devoted to with such superficial passion—which is a multi-millon dollar conglomerate who couldn't care less if he (the fanatic) lives or dies. Pick your delusion; the Lords of Perception will sell you the baseball cap or the dream catcher. All you have to do is keep believing in everything except your own potential to live your life independently of exterior influences and hype.

In the case of the 2012 hysteria, the so-called New Age lightworker types often demonstrated incredibly negative psychological reactions and even outright hysteria. Convinced that their lives would change during some planetary shift, when there was no proof ever presented that the end of the Mayan Long Count Calendar could signal such a change. It was all wishful thinking.

I myself paid careful attention to the posts and behavior of the people who visit and post on New Age forums, and it was a startling insight into just how fanatical and then manic some of these people became as the moment of confronting reality got ever closer. Many of these 'spiritual' types were as pathological as any plague-infested serf in the Middle Ages during a witch-burning or an anti-Semitic Pogrom following the visit of a comet or an eclipse.

As the magical date came more and more tangibly into view—after almost two decades of unending hype—it became increasingly obvious that nothing was happening and no 'ascension' to a higher level of consciousness was ever going to take place. The tightening of the psychic spring became more obvious. There were people who sincerely believed that a new planet Earth was being built in another dimension (by aliens, naturally), and, starting in mid-2012, the lightworkers, dolphin aficionados and other 'spiritual' types were to be transported onto the new perfect and peaceful version of planet Earth, while the rest of us were left on this one with all the suffering, wars, misery and mosquitoes. What was essentially a re-working of the Rapture from the Book of Revelations created some interesting and telling reactions within the people who actually believed this high-strangeness.

One could see these New Age and flying saucer message boards—even ones claiming to not adhere to the 2012 hype—descending into open demonstrations of mass hysteria and psychological breakdown, as many lightworkers proved that beneath their 'peace, love and light' pontifications, many of them were some of the most vicious, disturbed, indecent and emotionally unstable individuals one could ever hope to never encounter. Watching their machinations, I was beginning to understand why I made a promise to myself a few years ago that if a religion lasts a thousand years, then, even on some philosophical level, it has to have some merit, and it deserves respect.

The impact of reality, when it comes into direct connection with some New Age types, is similar to two substances colliding and creating a psychic explosion. In the case of the 2012 reality show, a subcultural explosion created by often unstable individuals, was psychologically detonated by the direct impact of reality, creating supersonic shock waves of frustration, depression, anger and violent 'veggie rage' in the psychic maelstrom of the tofu and granola eating cognitive dissonance of the New Agers.

It was never going to be any other way—the hype surrounding 2012 coiled ever more tightly around their collective psyche like an anaconda—and as the December 21st, 2012 date came rushing towards their infantile worldview, there were only two ways out of that predicament. Some New Agers exploded in psychotic rage at anyone they felt worthy of such, while others went into complete denial. Either result was another death of their critical thinking, as few, if any, learned from their disappointment surrounding 2012; they just found yet another magical thinking construct to pin their hopes upon, as the Lords of Perception have plenty of other choices on offer on their well-stocked shelves.

I am as open-minded as anyone. I completely accept that there are events and circumstances beyond the realm of present scientific understanding. As a keen Fortean myself and a fair-minded skeptic, I do not dismiss any esoteric or supernatural event off hat. I look into them and consider if there is indeed a scientific or psychological explanation behind the event. In the case of the 2012 endtime/ascension concept, the idea could be so easily dismissed with the most casual investigation. There was nothing to it—except for the significance of the date itself, and this provided certain people with a useful marketing angle. I am not dismissing the culture and religion of the Mayans of Central America. The problem was with the New Age folks who dismissed the present day Mayan understanding of the end of their Long Count Calendar—and applied all kinds of falsehoods and religious and historical attributes onto this date—which the Mayans themselves did not ascribe to.

However, in an interesting kind of way, the psychology and mass hysteria behind the 2012 hype did result in a very real effect. We were shown just how spiritually shallow most people outside the mainstream religions are compared to the rank and file: Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus and so forth. That great religions, for whatever reason, really do stand the test of time, while off-world fringe religious groups and flying saucer cults draw into their ranks people who are essentially lost souls looking for 'something'. The schism between the mainstream religions and the fringe types serves to underpin why atheism and agnosticism are such vital, stabilizing forces in the modern world.

The secular and non-secular have a strange kind of inter-dependency, which is one of the few places the Lords of Perception have not yet penetrated into. Mainly because there is no money to be made from people who are not looking for spiritual enlightenment—because they have perhaps already found it—or have decided they do not need it. In both cases, either approach is healthy. Perhaps it's in that gap between critical thinking and belief that the real story can be found. That's where our intuition lies.