Epic and long overdue talk with scholar of high weirdness Erik Davis, on the ins & outs, ups & downs of paranoid awareness, self-exploration and cultural examination, & the many different pathways through Chapel Perilous.
Part One: Tightrope Walkers (0 – 33m)
The inner chatter, meeting in Mexico, a gulf in worldviews, the podcast burnout, the lost art of conversation, polarization in the information age, connection across difference, the weaponization of everything, a free speech absolutist, the tightrope walker, emotional traps, attraction-resistance to paranoia, considerations about who to talk to, a big responsibility, what comes with mastery, a pattern of response to pop culture, a curation of a sensibility, who are the listeners, how conspiracy theory is constructed, intellectual ethics, religion and paranoia.
Part Two: From Conspiracy to Complicity (33m – 1 hr 12m)
From conspiracy facts to metaphysical theory, the many wings of chapel perilous, the Aeolus period, excess imbibing of dodgy memes, Jimmy Savile, being liminal, eliciting affect, the harrowing psychological dimensions, social complicity vs. conspiracy, comparing backgrounds, woven into the system, Erik’s father, climate change, a fringe operator in the system, antipathy-affinity for paranoia, circling abysses, infection with paranoid memes, what circles we move in, mimetic creatures, an early blueprint of self-marginalization, disinheriting, an open podcast, the stake for victims, between metaphysical control and human control, a healing journey, a partial rebellion, common sense realism, intense ontological pluralism, what do we know about institutions, Illuminatus.
Part Three: Living in the Shadow (1 hr 12m – 1 hr 40 m)
Ethics and how to move in the world, tiers of control, the CIA uncongealed, a space of connection, a duck in conspiracy waters, the problem with relying on intuition, getting grounded, increased cognitive dissonance, the hidden forces of the unconscious, different levels of consciousness, what controls our actions, high-mountain psychoanalysis, an uncanny way of existing, living in the shadow, consciousness and agency, a manipulation of consciousness, fragmentation of the psyche, embedded in an intelligent creation, a felt sense of the benign, horribly coopted, path of surrender, pluralistic possibility, a demonic Archon, everyday benevolence.
Part Four: Anthropologists of the Bizarre (1 hr 40 m – 2 hr 03m)
Radical acceptance, VALIS in the kibble, the world as temptation system, the path of transgression, doing penance, a scary step, impermeable barriers, Esalen-influenced spirituality, the healing ethic of the 70s & trauma, shamanic dismemberment, the language of trauma, a sense of responsibility, an anthropologist of the bizarre, honoring the scars, the many dimensions of reality, a condition of multiplicity, affirming the wounds, the pure and the impure, Sebastian Horsley & the natural end for nihilism, back to the body, an ability for ambiguity, Strieber & Crowley, a compassionate response.
Part Five: A Relationship with Poison (2 hr 03m – to end)
Abduction experiences, the full demonic control download, the poison path, mistaking element for essence, recognizing colonization, compassionate immanence, the oneness move, a relationship with the damaged, taking on toxicity, proximity to the fallen, transmutation of toxins, remaining in the trouble, the hard edge, age & wisdom, using toxins to detoxify, a dearth of role models, path of service, Erik’s pedagogy, waiting for orders, on threshold, embodied engagement & relating, a commitment to encounter, dropping the mask, human connection, going beyond language, weaving a tapestry, worthy opponents, shared zones.
Erik’s site: https://techgnosis.com/
Songs: “Knob Wobbler,” by Gib Strange; “Broadcast to the Addicted” by Drakes Hotel; “1996” by Origami Conspiracy; “What Use Am I” by Orbiting Freakshow Orch; “Monkey Said” by The Freak Fandango Orchestra; “These Words” by Hazelwood Motel.