54 Chapters
Medium 9781782200062

Chapter Eight: An Imaginal Synthesis

Daniels, Aaron B. Karnac Books ePub

Prior to its main task of suggesting a means of bridging the practices of countertransference and active imagination, this chapter formulates an aspect of the historical context of Jung's theories that parallels both the shift in criminology towards stranger murders as well as the emergence and transformations of the detective genre of fiction. Whereas Jung's ideas may be transcultural and ahistorical, the impetus for his presentation was sparked by the violence, unchecked progress, and mechanical imperialism of his industrializing era. Although monumental changes have occurred since Jung's last publication in the 1960s, the dawn of the new millennium is startlingly similar to Jung's era. As we will discuss, the isolation, anomie, and meaninglessness to which Jung spoke are practically givens of the postmodern world. In the accounts of the central criminal profilers, similar themes of isolation and a crisis of meaning also arise. In their estimation, the industrial and post-industrial world gave rise to the serial killer. Thus, before offering a synthesis rooted in the imaginal, we begin by positioning Jung in the same troubled landscape as the criminal profiler in the hopes that Jung's process of achieving that third thing, his transcendent function, might later offer a cultural position for the function of the criminal profiler. This also offers a chance to return to the troubled landscape of our society that first inspired this current research.

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Medium 9781904658566

20. Midword: A Summing-up-so-far

Daniels, Aaron B. Aeon Books ePub

If a work can have a foreword and an afterword, then it can also have a ‘midword.’ Volume One brought us halfway through the voids. With the preceding story’s hints at interweaving life and lived magic in mind, our journey through these aethyrs will start to accelerate from hereon out. Now that we have a sense of some of the core principles underlying this work, we have made a shift to looking at how our lives themselves unfold — that is, magic. These interconnections, nets of meaning, defenses, and longings propel us through lives that are mostly out of our control, regardless of the illusions of agency into which we may buy. Deliberate, intentional magic, as opposed to the unwitting worship of our quotidian ziggurats of images, is an audacious act, a Promethean act, and, for some, even a Luciferian act. We must defy the popular trances of ‘how things work’ in order to gain awareness of what has always been hiding in plain sight — actually in the very act of seeing itself. Nevertheless, this liberation is neither a permanent switch nor an isolated choice.

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Medium 9781904658498

17: Chaos: Te Fourth Void

Daniels, Aaron B. Aeon Books ePub

We live in a world awash in a host of ‘causalities’ that offer themselves to neatly ‘explain’ our circumstances. Pundits, professors, experts, historians, physicists, (authors), and your parents all explain to you ‘how things work,’ ‘what makes that happen,’ the nature of ‘cause and effect,’ and so on. These explanations are stories that situate, nuance, and support our current experiences. They are mythoi embedded with ideas about the structure of agency, efficacy, and intention.

Oddly enough, as humans we have difficulty separating the idea of causality from a sense of intentionality. Even though most of us don’t literally think ‘that rock wants to fall down that mountain face,’ we still operate with a worldview that very nearly replicates that animist attitude. We isolate what we consider the salient aspects of some situation (e.g., the rock that moves) and attribute disproportionate importance to that particular aspect — that manifestation of circumstances. This limited perspective robs us of insight into the bigger picture and thus forces us to look only at what seems to be directly affecting our particular point of focus. In the case of our rock we miss the spring’s frost melt, the patterns of glacial deposition, the wind patterns, the activities of local ant colonies, the field of other rocks that don’t seemingly move, the heat of the sun, magnetic fields, the gravitational pull of the sun and moon, global climate change, and all of the other factors that intersect in the larger context in which our arbitrary rock situates.

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Medium 9781904658566

19. Mentoring: Images of Resistance and Realization

Daniels, Aaron B. Aeon Books ePub

I type away furiously on the keyboard. The ideas come fooding up and I am glad to be able to finally express them in this journal entry that is taking shape on the computer monitor glowing in front of me. The bluster of New England’s late autumn rattles the windows and gives the work a peculiarly Romantic gravitas. This is a liminal sort of moment for me. I fnd myself once more in-between, an apprentice, a novice — after all these years and experiences.

Serves me right. My travels (hopefully not tourism) through the worlds of religion, philosophy, mysticism, the occult, and magic left me always on the move. I was so bitterly disappointed by so many would-be gurus, teachers, and sages that I stayed in motion — propelled actually. A year in this practice, six months in that one. I gave them a chance, but soon I found that the nonsense outweighed the benefts for me. Money-grubbers, narcissists, and fakes abounded. Of those that seemed to have some value, they fell into three disillusioning camps: either they had no psychological insight but an overly earnest devotion to some school of magic or mysticism; or they were rooted in psychology but had merely a winking ‘magical realism’; or, basically, they showed themselves to be just plain nuts and without a redeeming sense of humor, although they were often admirably tenacious in their convictions.

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Medium 9781904658566

35. Application 10 Glossographia

Daniels, Aaron B. Aeon Books ePub

Our lives are texts, intersections of texts, expressed through generative texts, and saturated with intertextual references. Where no words or symbols exist, we co-create them. We, those meaning-makers who are made of meaning, drown in letters, words, and phrases whose signification, far from being fixed, drifts with each use toward unknown seas of reference. (I have always imagined that this intertextuality is why so many of Tom Stoppard’s works bear the visual signature of pages blowing across the stage.)

Have you ever noticed the strange autochthonous languages that surround us? The bold ancient Asiatic lines of Worm-eaten-woodish? The delicate arabesques of Branching-spring-buddian? Perhaps the Pali resonances of Upper-storm-cloud? We see stories in stucco, countenances in concrete, and wildernesses in water-stained walls. Grafti and corrosion confront us with a secret language more alive with gravitas than any occult alphabet. Rather than merely ‘projecting’ onto these ciphers, are we not really intersecting with a lived world awash in meaning vectors?

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