Essays Thoughts in Brief. I find it strange that to note that the observation that someone 'did not suffer fools gladly' seems a kind of grudging compliment in the UK obituary columns. I suffer fools with overwhelming relish, some of them have money or attractive sexual partners, others can perform undemanding tasks for modest rewards. We should execute all living architects and bulldoze everything built in the 20th century. We should then create a new class of architect schooled no further than the cannons of Georgian and Victorian Gothic architecture, for everything built since looks shite and is hell to live or work in. We should have the humility to admit that we have yet to design anything better. I have never knowingly bought domestic or commercial property less than 120 years old, mainly out of aesthetic considerations, but also because I want it to last for my children. What do Women Want? After 29 years of effective marriage to the same person I feel qualified to offer a provisional answer. Women basically want what Men want. Everything, or at the very least, variety. Men look to women for a combined mother, whore, friend, rival, psychiatrist and nursemaid etc, etc. Few women have the time for all this today. Conversely how many men have the time to do heroic, vulnerable, compassionate, callous, capable and incompetent, and to have the odour of sanctity and the whiff of cordite about themselves at the same time? Only fantasy figures. Still, I can recommend the chaoist approach, unencumbered by notions of 'real self' one can take a stab at anything Liars. All life forms expend energy deceiving predators and/or prey and sending false signals to rivals and mates. Any human will lie if the survival, economic or religious price meets certain criteria. A problem only arises when you cannot tell how far you can trust someone. In my experience you only really have to watch out for those who lie deeply to themselves, and this includes yourself! Earthquakes. On meeting unarmed monotheists, always ask; 'Does your God create Earthquakes?' They can only answer with either Yes, No, I Don't Know, or with Evasive Bullshit. You can then easily checkmate on the next turn. Do not try this with armed monotheists. Technical Note, Group Conjuration. The second equation of magic, Pm=P+(1-P)M^1/P refers only to single conjurations. In contradistinction to what appears in my Liber Kaos, The Psychonomicon, I now have the algorithm for calculating the effects of multiple or subsequent conjurations for the same effect, although this really only applies to enchantment. Divination becomes a more complex question (especially where no exchange of data takes place between diviners). For the effects of any subsequent or additional enchantment, simply reiterate the second equation, substituting the Pm values from one calculation as the P values in the next. This procedure gives realistic results as long as one does not perform it excessively. It also appears empirically sound as the effect of an enchantment alters probability and that new probability becomes the baseline for further modification. Significantly the final Pm value shows little sensitivity to the order in which the reiterative calculations take place. MORE OF THIS WILL APPEAR AS THE BITTERSWEET RAW DATA OF MAMMALIAN LIFE ON A SMALL PLANET DISTILS ITSELF INTO WORDS.
^ Back to top An article on magical aeonics for Chaos International, in the wake of Sept 11. JIHAD By Stokastikos I seem to remember the British comedian Jasper Carrot remarking that he only made jokes about Christianity because if he made jokes about Islam he would get killed. Mindful of this I shall temper my words. Rational argument has no effect whatsoever on religious people, but blasphemy clearly terrifies them judging by their reaction to it. It certainly clears ones doorstep of Jehovah's Witnesses in a hurry in my experience. To a monotheism the very existence of any other religion acts as a blasphemy, except in the case where that monotheism chooses to view another monotheism as imperfectly mirroring its own. I absolutely loathe and despise all organised religions these days because their time has passed and they have nothing left to offer the human enterprise. I had the mixed experience of crossing Afghanistan on the way to India overland in '78 before the Russians invaded. In Herat I came close to having my balls removed and stuffed down my throat for having inadvertently tried to sit on one end of a long wooden bench. Before my arse touched the plank a hundred hands flew to rifles and daggers, presumably on account of a veiled figure seated some ten feet away on the other end of it. I made my excuses and left, you cannot argue with that degree of 'respect' for women. The Islamic calendar at the time said 1398, and they were not joking. If you look at Christendom in 1398 you can see pretty much the same mindset and behaviour as pertains in contemporary Islam. Now Christendom underwent a reformation with the advent of Protestantism, and Catholicism eventually caught up and reformed itself along broadly similar lines. This marked the beginning of the end of Christianity. The renaissance and the enlightenment followed, and humanistic philosophies overcame Christianity. Nobody can seriously call the 'westernised' parts of the world monotheist any longer. A vague residual superstition about 'God' still infects a proportion of the population, but very few people remain actively enthusiastic about the precise details of the theologies that supposedly go with it. In practise, the religious establishments of westernised societies preach little else but some version of the ethics of the atheistic humanisms that have effectively supplanted monotheism in law and custom. Perhaps I should mention here that Humanism does not mean humanitarian, it encompasses all atheistic and nihilistic philosophies from communism and social democracy to capitalism and fascism. The fundamentalist Mullahs miss the point completely when they criticise the 'war against terrorism' as a 'Christian crusade against Islam'. Humanism beat Christianity two and a half centuries ago, now it seeks to defeat Islam. I have no doubt that it will eventually succeed in this. (See my Psychohistoric Mechanism of the Aeons, Liber Kaos, Weisers). Humanity has never taken a real step backwards. No monotheist has ever reverted to real paganism (although some post-monotheists pretend to supposedly humanist pseudo-paganisms or even pseudo- shamanisms). Salman Rushdie has called for an Islamic reformation. I doubt that he will get one. I doubt that he personally has the wit or the will to organise one. I doubt that enough time exists for it to happen anyway because history has become radically truncated for most of the developing world. Turkey provides an interesting example. Following the demise of the Ottoman empire, the secularising reforms of Kemal Attaturk turned the 'sick man of Europe' from a crumbling Islamic despotism into a mildly unwell modern nation in which the theocrats have little more influence than the residual Church of England does here. You can have a really pleasant and civilised holiday in Turkey and I often do. Saudi Arabia, the wellspring of Islam, remains the guarantor of its fundamentalism in the face of the modern and postmodern world for one reason only. Oil. Only the western generated wealth that the Saudi oil brings the Saudi people allows them to maintain an acceptably luxurious lifestyle and an antique religious philosophy at the same time. When the oil runs out they will have to abandon most of the fundamentalist aspects of their religion or face a catastrophic decline in their lifestyle. Just about every human society on record has managed to compromise in favour of lifestyle when it had the choice, Might and Wealth may not appear entirely right at the time, but after a while nobody notices the difference. New techniques of War and Business have always acted as the main incentives for psychohistoric evolution and the victors always have the privilege of writing the history. Nobody now complains about the Celtic, Roman, and Norman upgrades to the culture of the British Isles, ghastly though these may have been at the time. So, my medium term predictions for the future? 1) An Islamic reformation will not occur. 2) A post Islamic humanism will triumph where Islamic fundamentalism now prevails, shortly after oil ceases to act as a critical economic resource, circum 2020 AD, (1440 Islamic). 3) 'The End of History' has been postponed, eat your heart out Fukuyama, because a lot of nasty things will happen in the interim and most importantly because something else will begin to supplant atheistic humanism* *Footnote. As a fourth aeon post -humanist chaoist illuminate I can see the general outline of what comes next. Transcendentalism goes into hibernation, whilst materialistic and 'magical' paradigms achieve a balance, but do not panic, our descendants will probably survive and joyfully overthrow atheistic humanism with something more effective. It will certainly not look like religion as we have the misfortune of knowing it, and the magical part of the impending paradigm will probably get called something more 'scientific'. We live in interesting, but not entirely unpredictable, times, methinks.
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An article on magical science for Chaos International. Cutting Edge Theory By Peter James Carroll Era Vulgaris 2005 will mark the centenary of Einstein's Theory of Relativity and many in the scientific community would like to celebrate it with the discovery of a Theory of Everything (TOE). So what would such a pretentious sounding theory consist of and what relevance would it have for magic and for general and occult philosophy? Well, for the last 70 years or so a bizarre and weird paradox has left a great many scientists tearing their hair out and a smaller number of mystics, wizards and parapsychologists looking rather smug. The scientists have the following problem: Einstein's special and general theories of relativity give a fabulously accurate description of how space and time and mass and energy work. Mass consists of terrifying concentrations of energy. Let loose the total energy in an ounce of anything and an eighty five megaton explosion will result. In addition mass also consists of a geometrical distortion of space and time, or conversely, bent space and time gives rise to what we call mass. Bent time may sound rather odd but a clock does run a tiny bit slower at the bottom of a hill than at the top. Bent space has more obvious effects; it kills hundreds of people every day by ensuring that they fall down rather than up, we commonly call it gravity. Now relativity has the same underlying metaphysic as classical Newtonian "sensible" mechanics. It suggests that we inhabit a universe that runs on causality and determinism and that reality behaves in a continuous fashion. Additionally it implies the constraint that no object or signal can travel faster than light. Philosophically, relativity does not force much of a change from the enlightenment -Newtonian worldview. If you want an old style god you can still have one, although it must become a somewhat more remote 'architect of the universe ' sort of creature. Both Newtonian and relativistic physics imply a linear time frame with the strong possibility of a beginning and an end to time. Now the other main pillar of scientific understanding of the universe, quantum theory, contradicts all of the above. Quantum theory gives an equally fabulously accurate description of how the small parts of the universe behave. It tells us how light and atoms work, and explains all of chemistry at a stroke. It describes nature as based on certain minimum sized bits (quanta) of matter and energy like atomic particles and light photons. Now these little bits only seem to obey statistical rather than causal and deterministic principles, they do not behave sensibly and predictably on an individual basis. Furthermore they can exchange information with each other instantaneously and seemingly manifest in more than one location or state at the same time. Indeed their behaviour in space and time looks so weird that many people consider our description of quantum physics incomplete. It certainly contains a lot of arbitrary parameters which we can measure but not deduce. Philosophically quantum physics severely threatens the classical enlightenment Newtonian worldview. Tomorrow will not evolve out of today in an entirely orderly rational fashion, concealed from us only by the manifold complexity of the processes involved. Some of what will happen tomorrow will surprise even the universe itself. Einstein who helped to lay the foundations of the quantum theory did not like this. He famously quipped that 'god does not play dice'. But any god who built quantum physics into creation plainly has a gambling problem. . So here we have the paradox. The big bits of the universe do not seem to run on the same rules and philosophy as the small bits, but the big bits consist entirely of lots of the small bits. At variable points on the scale of things the rules change suddenly and we do not know how this happens. To a planet the universe would appear fairly predictable over a fairly long timescale, but an electron lives in an almost entirely chaotic universe. Now something the size of a human finds itself in an interesting realm of rule conflict, a realm in which order and chaos compete. Some occultists, parapsychologists and mystics have leapt upon the quantum paradigm with premature glee. They claim that non local (instantaneous) information exchange explains the 'unity of all things' and their magical arts at a stroke and completely rubbishes the materialistic scientific non-occult viewpoint. Nevertheless it seems that in the lab, whilst you can send instantaneous information you can only send probabilistic gibberish that does not communicate an intelligible signal. Perhaps following the magical theorists, some religious thinkers have speculated that their god put randomness into the universe to leave herself a discrete backdoor through which she could work miracles. (I.e. to cheat herself at her own game) if she so desired. It seems hilarious and sad that every time we find some fairly simple explanation of how things work, like evolution, DNA, or planetary motion, theology has to take yet another giant stride up the rickety ladder of baroque and tortuous explanationism. Obviously god buried the dinosaur bones just recently to test the faithful. Anyway, back to the Theory of Everything. We will probably not have one by 2005, but perhaps within the lifetime of someone reading this, we may have a single theory that explains the behaviour of the big stuff in the universe and the small stuff as well, and how both come to exist at all. Now such a theory must explain how magic works as well, for if only a single magical event has happened in the entirety of spacetime then the theory will remain inadequate if it cannot explain it. Now obviously any theory of how magic works on a parapsychological level must add some factor to the universe because magic plainly cannot operate through gravity, electromagnetism or any other currently measurable form of energy. Neither can it act through simple quantum non-locality, as we know it. Simply calling this other factor chi or spiritual energy or astral light or whatever does not actually add anything to our knowledge or abilities. I have never rested easy with the school of thought which says that magic works (if somewhat erratically) so lets just enjoy it in all its gothic splendour. Every human technology advances by the development of three successive models. First comes phenomenology, consisting of basic observations of what does and does not occur and what does and does not work. Secondly comes explanationisn in which inadequate hypotheses attempt to explain the phenomenology but fail to give testable predictions for improving the technology. Thirdly, with a bit of luck, comes a proper theory which not only explains the phenomenology fairly simply, but also allows the development of the technology by other than hit and miss procedures. The fact that we do not have a proper theory of magic, and that we only have a variety of explanationisms, should not occasion a retreat into bare phenomenology. A proper theory of magic should not only tell us something of immense philosophical and technical value about the structure of the universe, it should also tell us how to do magic more effectively. I find it intriguing that both magic and quantum physics share similar theoretical problems. In both disciplines the phenomena under investigation behave probabilistically, and they behave oddly with respect to time. In neither dicipline do we have a widely accepted theory of the underlying physical reality. Neils Bohr who founded the Copenhagen school of quantum physics which remains 'probably the best interpretation in the world', (the Carlsberg brewery funded the research), went so far as to deny the existence of any underlying reality at all. Now whilst quantum theory remains quietly and incomprehensibly strange, cosmology, the study of the universe at large, has recently become really wild and exciting. Recent headlines confirm this: 'Universe twice as big as thought last week'. '80 % of Universe Missing!' 'Universe from Exploding Singularity'.'Colliding M-Branes Created the universe'. 'Universe originates from Nothing'. 'Expansion of space accelerating'. Universe younger than its parts'. 'Beginning of time only 12billion years ago'. 'space due to collapse in 20 billion years', and usually in response to each of these 'Oops no its not!' a few months later. And all this despite the fact that the beginning and end of time and space can only occur WITHIN space and time or within er, something else. (The body of god perhaps?). Considering all the conceptual problems piling up in quantum theory and cosmology, it might seem that the prospect of a Theory of Everything has receded off the scale, and that the more we find out the less we know. However perhaps magic has a surprise ingredient to offer that could simplify the problem, Many occult explanationisms posit some form of other 'dimension' or 'plane' or realm. The quantum theorists have tried this as well and have toyed with up to eleven extra spatial dimensions. Such hypotheses remain highly suspect, they add a huge complexity and have little predictive value, and besides, where can you put such dimensions unless you make them arbitrarily tiny. Occult conceptualists however have frequently taken casual liberties with the conventional model of time, despite the paradoxes involved in some of their assumptions. Now it seems to me that a certain idea from the realm of pure mathematics could perhaps model many of the phenomena of magic. Gradually it emerged that it could perhaps also resolve many of the conceptual problems in quantum theory and cosmology as well, and perhaps supply a vital component to a TOE. This idea has an unfortunate name, 'Imaginary Time'. This sounds like something fairytale, but it really means something more like parallel universes. Now the conventional parallel universe or 'multiverse' hypothesis arises as a possible interpretation of quantum theory in which vast numbers of physical universes lay stacked next to each other, each with subtle differences to the one next to it. Nobody except sci-fi writers takes this idea very seriously, exactly where do you put all these universes? Well, you could put parallel universes 'sideways in time' in a manner of speaking, because if 'sideways in time ' has imaginary temporal co- ordinates, then it acts as a kind of pseudo-space. Just what the wizard ordered. 'Imaginary' in the mathematical sense has a precise meaning, it means measured in multiples of the square root of minus one, rather than in the multiples of one that we use for most quantities. It may seem rather obtuse to measure anything with imaginary numbers but this mathematical trick allows us to visualise and to interconvert things like space and time as Minkowski showed. The spacetime of relativity for example, depends on a Minkowski geometry of 4 dimensions. In this a distance in spacetime can have either a real (spatial) or an imaginary (temporal) value. Conversely we could enter space as imaginary time and still get useful answers, but a worse headache from the visualisation. Now if time has 'sideways' components as well as its obvious linear past-present-future then space has the SAME dimensionality as space.(It seems a grotesquely inelegant asymmetry to have two such fundamental and inextricable phenomena as space and time having different dimensionalities). Now space has no preferred direction, so why does time appear to have one, i.e. forwards rather than sideways? I suggest that the minute size of our temporal horizon fools us here. If we existed as tiny blind organisms with only a single tactile sense organ and no means of detecting lateral acceleration, we would experience the world as a one dimensional line. By modelling the two 'other' dimensions of tome with imaginary numbers we can at least compare six dimensional spacetime 'distances' and obtain some sort of a visualisation or mental model, even if nothing really distinguishes one dimension of time from another. I can give you a short and dirty answer to what this model means to creatures such as us with minuscule temporal horizons. 'Probability Lies at Right Angles to Time', furthermore it lies in a sort of 'extra space' that we cannot perceive any more readily than the next second. It means that no physical object has an arbitrarily precise state or location in four-dimensional spacetime. All events actually consist of a superposition of the states occupied in their 'temporal thickness'. For small objects and events on the quantum scale this effect appears in what we call the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. For larger objects such as ourselves it means that the indeterminacy of events rises exponentially with time. Thus in a sense we inhabit a 'parallel universes' multiverse, but all the parallels exist superimposed on each 'here' other in 'this' universe. This may sound insane but consider it this way; all the trillions of subatomic particles which make up your body exist in several different states simultaneously, separated only by their distance in sideways time. We do not normally notice the superposition unless we do something naughty like the double slit or stern gerlach experiments or attempt quantum computing. Now the above effects appear only at very small scales, does this mean that 3D time has only a very slight 'thickness' that we can ignore for ordinary macroscopic processes? Not at all, 'Time is as thick as it is long'. If you look at a planet's behaviour (orbital motion etc) on a timescale commensurate with its vast size then it behaves as chaotically as an electron on its own scale. Before concluding with what the hypothesis of 3D time can offer magical theory I would like to briefly digress into high energy physics and cosmology. Firstly high energy (or particle) physics, (the smaller the thing you want to look at, the higher the energy and the larger the microscope you need). To summarise the Hyperwarp 6D pages of my Specularium website: - A judicious arrangement of particle spins in 6 rather than 4 dimensions can explain the existence and behaviour of the 3 generations of fermion particles, the 3 quarks in each baryon, the 3 gradations of electroweak charge, the 3 colours of the strong nuclear force, the 3 weak force bosons, and much else besides. Furthermore it predicts that under sufficient pressure neutrons can annihilate against each other. This tantalising possibility may solve certain problems of thermodynamics in cosmology and allow us to make clean energy and much better bombs. Three dimensional time can also resolve some of the major problems in cosmology. Time does not need to have a beginning or an end if time has a three dimensional geometry. We do not have to worry about falling off of the end of the world since we discovered that the surface curves around another dimension to form the finite but unbounded surface of a sphere. Something similar, but more difficult to visualise, probably pertains to the whole universe. The gravity of the whole universe may well cause all of space to curve back in on itself to form an hyperspherical 'surface' This surface will have similar finite and unbounded properties as the surface of a sphere, we can never get to the edge of it, but it has a definite size. Effectively this means that we inhabit the inside of a very large black hole. Now to create an hypersphere you need to bend all three spatial dimensions around another dimension. The pseudo space of imaginary time provides the ideal, and probably the only possible candidate for this. Thus no space exists outside of our finite and unbounded universe; it sits in imaginary time. Now a spatially finite and unbounded universe could still have a beginning and an end in time if no limits exist to the compression of matter, and gravitational singularities can arise. However the hypothesis of 3D time can get rid of all those nasty 'edges' in time and spacetime singularities altogether. If the time that we extrapolate forwards from a hypothetical big bang to a possible big crunch actually curves round in imaginary time, then time does not have to have a finite length. Instead it has a finite radius, and the big bang becomes merely an artefact of false assumptions, rather like the collision of lines of longitude and latitude at the terrestrial poles, a cartographic rather than an actual catastrophe. Temporal paradoxes do not occur in a universe with finite but unbounded circular time, for you can never go backwards of forwards to exactly the same spacetime coordinates again. The neutron annihilation (and its reverse) mechanism predicted as a consequence of the role of 3D time in particle physics will also ensure that the contents of the universe constantly recycle themselves rather than get stuck in singularities, so the universe will always appear to have roughly the same apparent age at all points in spacetime. In the foregoing I have attempted to show that I have not simply added 3D time to magic as a replacement explanationism for the astral plane or whatever, but that 3D time has explanatory power and makes testable predictions in other fields of human endeavour as well. So how does Three Dimensional time provide a theoretical model for magic? Consider first enchantment, increasing the probability of a desired event by will or intent or whatever. The moment of the present consists of a superposition of all possible pasts that could have led to that present. Some of those superposed states will contribute to the probability of the desired outcome and some will not. Now because of the quantum non locality mechanism all superpositions communicate instantaneously, spatial separation makes little difference. However because all superpositions communicate in this way only probabilistic gibberish rather than unambiguous signals, usually get transmitted in this way by simple mechanical systems. Humans nevertheless, can make definite choices. [At this point the theory becomes 'occult', for at the time of writing we do not know enough about neurophysiology and information theory to specify exactly the relationship between an event and a mental 'image' of it. (The problem of the magical link). Yet some link plainly does exist, despite the manifold variables of the experimental magical data which render it difficult to quantify]. Choice of intent, (and subconscious intent seems to have the whip hand here, see Austin Osman Spare in general and my 'Sleight of Mind', Liber Kaos, Weisers), may well operate parapsychologicaly by a fairly simple mechanism. If the mental information in a desire or a spell can skew the probability contribution that certain superpositions will make to the manifestation of the future via quantum non local information transfer then we have a potentially quantifiable mechanism for enchantment. With Divination, (trying to detect which of the manifold superpositions of the present will actually manifest in the future), things become gruesomely more complicated as the very act of 'looking' seems to act as an enchantment. Thus I always advise aspiring wizards and wizardesses to enchant rather than to divine. If I had to sum it all up in a soundbite I would say that 'Three Dimensional Time allows the Imagination to Define The Future' But what of gods, daemons, spirits, egregores, servitors, and all the traditional artefacts of magic? Well I still consider that these things originate in the human imagination, but because the imagination can create parapsychological effects in extreemis (gnosis), such things have a reality in proportion to the belief we choose to invest in them. So, in summary, the hypothesis of 3D time offers a possible way of reconciling general relativity with quantum physics. It does this not by the conventional (and so far unsuccessful) method of trying to quantise gravity, but by its exact reverse. Hyperwarp 6D attempts to geometricate the quanta instead and describes their behaviour as resulting from distortions in a six dimensional spacetime. In such a model, magic appears as a natural consequence of the structure of the universe. I retired from the grandmastership of the IOT Pact to work on this idea and the fruits of this labour appear on my Specularium website, complete with about half of the maths required to prove it. The development of both relativity and quantum physics may well represent the crowning intellectual achievement of the third aeon. The resolution of the confusion engendered by the coexistance of these two incompatible theories will perhaps supply the basis of the fourth aeon paradigm. Immanentise the Chaoist Pandaemonaeon!
^ Back to top An article on magical history for Occulture. Chaos Magic, Clause 3. Separating the Chaoists from the Essentialists, by Pete Carroll. The Magical Revival of the sixties had many strange ingredients and it spawned one distinctive tradition, Chaos Magic. (Readers from the USA should note that in Europe 'the sixties' means the cultural period from 1968 to 1978). A simple list of phenomena from that era probably conveys the occult current of the age better than anything, so here goes. Hashish, LSD, The Pill, Mass Female Promiscuity, Rock Music, Graham Bond, Led Zeppelin, Aleister Crowley Reprinted, Israel Regardie, Golden Dawn Reprinted, Austin Spare Revisited, Enough Slack in the economy for widespread enjoyment of sex and drugs and rock and roll and eastern mysticism and witchcraft Heady days man, you should have been there. Three options confronted those with esoteric leanings in those days. Neo-ism, Scientism, and Chaos. The neo-ists created neo-shamanism, neo-witchcraft, neo-paganism, neo-crowleyanity and neo-anything else that took their fancy, In doing this they borrowed with breathtaking and shameless eclecticism from any tradition that appealed to them, and then tried very hard to pretend that they hadn't. It didn't take long for most of these neo or pseudo traditions to loose most of their fire and excitement as the whole enterprise collapsed into the new-age sludge under an avalanche of books on whiter than white teenage witchcraft and caring paganism for vegetarians. Scientismic esotericism evaporated even faster. No market now exists for all those hundreds of titles on 'creative visualization' and ' mind power' that once crowded the bookshops. The ideas in these books had come from magical traditions but the psychological jargon did not provide an enduring substitute for the romance of sorcery. Chaos seemed the most probable result of eschewing both neo-ism and scientism during the publishing explosion of the sixties magical revival. The tsunami of republished material from just about every magical tradition from Neolithic shamanism to the Golden Dawn threatened a metaphysical overload. Gradually it became clear to some people that instead of constituting a problem, Chaos actually provided a solution. The cornucopia of ideas in the collected works of the Golden Dawn represented the fruits of the previous occult revival in the 1880's. Its publication in the sixties magical revival as a gigantic (and often turgid) single tome had an extraordinary but often unacknowledged effect. It showed that Aleister Crowley had innovated little at all in the way of occult theory. As an alumnus of the Golden Dawn he did not go far beyond their ideas, although he did break new ground in the fields of lifestyle and ritual extremism with considerable aplomb. The Golden Dawn corpus presented the reader with a spectacular cacophony of traditions unified by nothing more than the theme of magic. The implied metaphysics of the Golden Dawn corpus lurch wildly from animism to spiritism to paganism to neo-platonism to monotheism to positivism and even to a species of existentialist post-modernism well before its time, (see the chapter on manufacturing angels for example). Samuel Liddell MacGregor Mathers probably wrote most of it in the reading room of the British Museum whilst Karl Marx sat writing Das Kapital. Mathers also probably wrote the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage himself and presented it as a renaissance original because he found medieval goetia and thaumaturgy in need of an upgrade. Occult historians usually fail to credit Mathers with priming the bomb that would, eighty years later, blow magic into another dimension. Another alumnus of the Golden Dawn, Austin Osman Spare, supplied the core insights that allowed some modern magicians to escape the maze of eclecto-mania into the chaos paradigm. Spare's ideas remained largely forgotten until Kenneth Grant mentioned them in his books during the sixties revival. Spare effectively deconstructed and rebuilt magical thinking at about the same time as Albert Einstein performed a similar service to physics. Some wit dubbed the 'CHAOS' in chaos magic as 'The Continuing Hagiography of Austin Osman Spare'. As the revival gathered momentum, a cluster of experimental assumptions gradually evolved into a coherent paradigm. (Philosophy always comes after the event) In no particular order, the items of the manifesto included the following: -. 1) We can exploit by magic the fact that the universe has a large random component in its behavior. (Imputs from quantum physics and later, the so called 'chaos mathematics') 2) We do not need to treat all the magical symbolism of historical magical and religious systems as sacred. We can treat them as useful if we wish, and we can make up our own, to our own tastes and needs.(Heavily implied by the Golden Dawn corpus) 3) We do not need to believe in pre-existing gods and spirits and demons. We can manufacture things which have exactly the same effects. (Spare) 4) We should treat belief as a tool for creating results, not as a goal in itself. (Imput from Spare) 5 We do need to observe certain technical procedures (sleight of mind and gnosis) to achieve magical effects, whatever the symbolism used. (Imputs from Spare and Crowley) Now such ideas began to spread through the whole esoteric community, although many groups would not accept clause 3 because it conflicted with their investment of belief in a particular system that they had revived. Those who accepted clause 3 tended to describe themselves as Chaos Magicians, and many of them who wished to work together gravitated towards the 'Magical Pact of the Illuminates of Thanateros', usually shortened to 'The Pact' or to 'The IOT'. Now manufacturing gods and demons for fun and profit demands a spectrum of attitudes running from the deadly serious to the seriously irreverent. The Pact gained notoriety and charisma for its frenzied rites and its solemn rites, both capped off by uproarious laughter as a banishing. No other order has contemplated mail order poltergeist schemes to my knowledge. I shall not forget the massed hooded and robed figures typing frantically one handed at computer keyboards, whilst crumbling incense into smoking braziers with their free hands, as stroboscopes chopped the darkness with epileptiform lightning. In The Pact you get practical experimental metaphysics with no gurus and no excuses. In the old aeon, the cannon of (recently invented) sacred procedures constituted the whole of the law. In chaos magic everything becomes a true experiment, in the sense that we would not bother to do it if we knew the result in advance.