Tuesday, March 19, 2013

some great new § books

Here are a couple of new books on the theory of § (with some examples, of course) that is very good, lots of different perspectives by people who clearly are deep into the Synchronicity Hole. According to the last one, a third and final book in the series is set to come out next year.

Here is another good one I've found, which includes an interesting take on how to cultivate Synchronicity into your lives:

the zine of Orthodox Discordianism

Back in the early to mid 1990's (god, I'm dating myself), I used to publish a Discordian zine, called Tsujigiri (Japanese for "to try out one's new sword on a chance wayfarer" - I am a  pacifist, and the title was purely metaphorical, mind you). Again, for those of you too young to know, a "zine" (short for magazine") was a self-published newsletter type thing, printed on something called "paper." This was before the Internet was readily accessible, before websites pretty much. Zines started in the 70's with cheap mimeographs being available, one could type a fanzine (most early zines were written by fans of bands or TV shows, lots of science-fiction, or whatever), but when home computers (yes, I remember when having a home computer was unusual) became ubiquitous and had easy to use word processors and page layout programs (though a lot of zines, like the first couple of mine, were done using actual physical "cutting and pasting," like with scissors and a glue stick), plus the plethora of stores that let you use copy machines (Kinkos used to be a hipster paradise back in the day), DIY printing created a boom in the zine world.

My zines (five issues plus one that was never finished) have never before been available online, but I think I now have the technology and know-how to get them on the Internet, in case anyone wants to check them out. Keep in mind I was much younger then, had no spell-check program for most of them, and was on lots of pain medications (note: when one has chronic pain, pain killers do not cause one to get high, but they do cause a great deal of brain fog), I had no money and gave the zines away for free (donations were quite helpful, and many of my subscribers did send "the usual," a couple bucks to cover stamps or an exchange of their zines). The first issue is indicative of the lack of money, I tried to squeeze as much as I could into as few printed pages as possible (turned out to be five pages, five being the sacred Discordian number), the tiny print may have caused a few reader's eyes to bleed, but putting them online will allow you to zoom in as you read it.

The reason I'm putting them here (besides not knowing where else to put them), is that when I started writing them, I encountered a synchronicity monsoon which would ebb every time I started working on an issue. I ended up having a § (that's my symbol for "synchronicity," remember) article in each issue, describing the major ones and contemplating their meaning (if any). It will give you something to read while I take forever updating my blog, at least. I'm only going to put the first issue online for now, as I want to make sure that what I'm doing is working (they should be in a zip file, as PDFs, which I hope will be able to be downloaded and read by anyone on any computer system). Please email me, at acausality@gmail.com, to let me know if you could successfully download and read this, or if there was a problem. I have a Mac, so I don't know if this will work on other systems, but I think PDFs work on all platforms. So, cross my fingers, Hail Eris, here we go:


You might have to copy and paste the above link to your browser, where you may or may not be able to download the zine. Apparently, you cannot post PDFs directly into a blog, so I had to jump through some hoops - you'll have to download the zines, unless I figure out some other way to let them be displayed online. Of course, being old school, I recommend you download the zine and print out a copy onto paper, the way zines were meant to be read!

Welcome back!

I should have mentioned at the beginning of my blog that I have a rather ornery chronic pain problem, a result of nerve damage from my above knee amputation back in 1991. Twenty plus years of chronic pain is not exactly conducive to getting things done (hence, why I don't yet have my doctorate, which I definitely plan to get - my New College degree from the University of Alabama in "Comparative Mysticism as Embodied in Religion, Philosophy, and Art" means I either get a doctorate or I work at a fast food joint. Or maybe Denny's... that wouldn't be so bad, I've had a lot of strange experiences as Denny's. But to get back to my point, from time to time, due to the pain and medications I'm on, I tend to drop off the face of the Earth now and then for extended periods. I'm doing a bit better right now, and I thought it was the perfect time to get back to my long neglected blog. I don't know if anyone is still reading this, but maybe the occasional person will be ensnared by Synchronicity and stumble upon this humble blog.

Stay tuned for more posts, I tend to post in bulk when I get back to something like this or FaceBook.

BTW, the photo triptych above was taken by me a few years ago when I was taking a class in Black & White film photography - for those young 'uns, film was what we old people used before digital cameras. I not only took the photos (with some help from my mother to help make sure I was centered for the most part), but I also developed them in an actual dark room, no photoshop or computers, the special effects in the first image were all done in camera using some not so difficult methods, though getting it to look right is apparently harder than I had known at the time, I just got lucky. Old school. The pieces are titled (in order) Body Image I, Body Image II, and Body Image III, and believe it or not was partially inspired by Aztec mythology. But that's another story. I submitted this work to an actual art show, put on by the American Association for Orthopedic Surgeons, they were putting on an art exhibit for both ortho surgeons who are artists, as well as artists who had orthopedic problems at one or more points in their lives - I figured with my extensive orthopedic history, starting at age five with a rare and "terminal" (so they said) bone cancer, an Extraosseus Ewings Sarcoma, if there was any art exhibit I had a chance of being in, this would be the one.

I had actually submitted some drawings for their previous exhibit, despite having never been trained in the technique, not realizing this was a real deal art show with lots of professional artists, and to my shock and joy they accepted one of my drawings. The second exhibit I heard about from AAOS was to honor Wounded Warriors, and since amputations are a common unfortunate type of wound in wars, and much of my art is introverted (not all of it concerns my amputation, of course), I thought I'd send in some photos that I'd taken while I had learned photography, and submitted the Body Image triptych and another photo (in Infra-Red B&W), and they accepted both! Not only did they publish both works in a book for the show with all the other art, the exhibit went all over the country, including the Russell Senate Office Rotunda in Washington, DC (right across the street from the Capitol Building), and I actually sold the triptych to someone who was not a relative, it is apparently hanging in the waiting room of an orthopedic surgeon! I had earlier sold a print (not a digital print, an actual dark room one) of the triptych to a local photographer who saw it at a local art exhibit it was in, so although I'm quite new to the art world, I'm already doing better than Vincent van Gogh did during his lifetime, so obviously expect great things from me in the future! Yes, I'm being sarcastic.