The Centre for Experimental Ontology looked at magickal effects through the schema of the pneuminous theory in a particular way. That is, the pneuminous accretions were concept-stuff (pneuma) stuck together by NARPs -self aware accretions. The nature of existence was theorised to show the appearance of a duality: a solidity inferred by pneuma, perpetually held in a beyond, the umbratic. The ‘explanation’ of magick, such as it was, was the transcendental move that the apparently ineffective pneuma could in fact, under certain circumstances alter this umbratic solidity, the result being some sort of rupture like effect (synchronicity, spell efficacy etc.).

As a strict phenomenological epistemology we believe this still holds. It never says this is how things are, it just says if you accept the reality of such things then this is the most rational ontology -to avoid being bogged down in dubious, precise competing metaphysical models (Kabbalah, Theosophy etc.). The further complicating factor comes in the manifestation of detail. Of course one is in speculative land here, a speculation that is based on the premise of the actuality of something like magick obtaining, so really the territory is  really quite ridiculous. Yet equally it is not so. The appearance of magick is strong (it is inerradicable) and so the phenomenology of its explanation is only one step behind it, it appears almost with it, it is conjured by it, to save the phenomena from its Kafkaesque or Lynchian abruptness -which we only find tolerable in these settings, and even here we frequently attempt to work out the back story. The territory is preposterous and reasonable at the same time. It is a problem we -as children of the enlightenment- feel we should not bother with, and yet it nestles its epistemological problems happily alongside those of Descartes’. It gives succour to his rigorous level of questioning -it makes it relevant.

The previous explanation of the relation between pneuma and umbra has itself been cloaked in darkness. This is a necessary step for there is no available knowledge of such a putative relation between two categories, which are admittedly phenomenological. However there has always been a certain path trodden amongst the manifestations (competing ontologies). It was admitted a long time ago that there are not two possible options for the manifestation of magick but three -though the agnostic disjunction always suggests just two (the solid and the mutable). The third is the passed-over option of pre-determined harmony. This option has received little treatment and will not receive a good deal today, though it is worth noting that it does tread a reasonable middle ground, by acknowledging actual metaphysical connection between phenomena whilst retaining an unmutable integrity. There are curious lines of connection, but there is no alteration of umbra by pneuma through action of the will as such.

It is this notion of the solid integrity of the existence that raises its head today. As mentioned, the pneuminous theory entails that the putative solidity (as held together by the umbratic), whilst generally extremely reliable, can be on occasion, completely restructured by the force of pneuminous accretions. The system is layered such that the basic pneuminous field prevents direct umbratic access, we have a kind of access to a vector field. This is the ‘given’. It can be inferred to exist (transcendentally) and can be half perceived with phenomenological viewing -by stripping away all conceptual layers that you can. The accretions form around regions of the vector field, these regions are our things. Magick is simply the application of a concept to a region of the vector field that does not invite it. If the concept is applied to the region with sufficient force, it may give way and adopt the nature of the concept rather than the usual route -which is that it determines it.

This picture implies a highly volatile, almost incomprehensible reality in which umbratic resistance is to a greater or lesser extent, giving way to the weight of the pneuminous forces. The notion of any human friendly coherent integrity is totally missing. This lack of coherence, is not a worry to the system. If this is the description, then this is simply where the phenomenological trail leads, we are not here to adjust the result just because it seems utterly bizarre. There is however an option which seem a little less frustrating. The previous option seems to have a hidden sense of a single world to it. It is not stated overtly but it is most obvious by the omission of any statement that suggests multiple realities. The onus is on the accretions ability to alter the umbratic and hence what we call reality. The essential ability of the conceptual accretion to do something, to exert an affect can only be jettisoned by the acceptance of inert (to pneuminous influence) reality or predetermined harmony and these possibilities are not what we are discussing here.

So if reality, in a singular sense, is not twisting and turning around us in relation to the way in which various accretions are attached to various NARPs, what is the other option? As may have been guessed from the above comments, the alternative manifestation of how the magickal effect is achieved, is simply to say that we move from one reality to another. This somewhat banal sounding answer shows itself as the simple opposite to the incoherent unity which can be dispensed with by this simple move: the one is in fact the many. The notion then would be something like this: potentially we move between multiple near identical looking realities all the time. Pneuminous accretions that autonomously activate in relation to a NARP causing synchronistic like phenomena do not do so by altering a single reality. Rather it occurs by causing a kind of hopping between various realities, dragging the NARP to the reality tunnel where a certain phenomena is actually happening, one where the accretion (merely idly pondered in one) is actually attached to vector. One can think of the 23 in this way. The 23 accretion, when tapped, pulls people through a variety of realities in which it appears physically (on the clock, on the train ticket, on the door your visiting etc.). A more active magick i.e. in which a desired pneuminous structure attempts to be imposed on a vector to alter it, will, if successful move us as close as it can to whatever reality stream most closely resembles this outcome, we of course will never know we have travelled thus.

This model, whilst in one sense as outlandish as the single warping reality, in which NARPs and other powers vie for dominance of the territory, has a vague sense of greater sanity. In this model the regular integrity of reality is retained, at least in those phenomena that do not directly display rupture. The discussion of what adjustments we may or not need to make to the model to deal with direct rupture, is for another time.

 

When you cannot see something its ontological status is unknown.

This is the most reasonable formula for the phenomenology of the fantasy that our perceiving things may be in some way altering them. Magickal understanding, at least in a pneuminous (or chaos magickal sense) means that we have to treat this seriously. This kind of ontology entails that the concepts are altering the umbratic restraint -the stuff. Does this mean perception itself is altering it or is it simply the conceptualisation of it that does the altering? The concepts are originally formed out of perceiving the physical vector field.

The idea that creates the idea of perceptual creation is the lack of metaphysical certainty that the non-perceived is ontologically identical to the perceived. In this place seems to be a bifurcation related to the necessary magickal epistemology. To repeat: is it the perception or the idea that is doing the altering (insofar as we can separate these)?

The notion that magick affects at a distance would seem to indicate that pneuminous powers can do the altering regardless of immediate presence. This means that the notion of perceptual creation is separate from the notion of magickal manipulation. Ironically direct perception seems to be the solidifying force. The irony being that the implication seems so powerfully enticingly magickal -that perception itself is altering the stuff. But this alteration is one that renders it largely stable, it is a negative entropic force upon the chaos. This is magickal because it is so stabilising, yet the thing  we call magickal is the power of conceptual alteration (pneuminous interference).

One of the features of static spatial zones is often that human perception scarcely falls upon them with the crucial addition that it used to. This is the dereliction effect. It is related to Fisher’s description of the eerie. For Fisher, the eerie is related to the absence of obvious agency to a particular local and yet the hint that there is still some kind of agency involved -maybe they have gone, maybe they are hidden.

This helps us differentiate the zone from the unplace. Unplaces have old human pneuma attached to them. They were occupied by people and now are only haunted by conceptual ghosts from our sphere. The natural world has come to reclaim the place. The eeriness in Fisher’s term is purely due to the absence of a known agent -the human. They were here and now they are not. Relatively banal paranormality may be present in the form of residual neurotic accretions unshackled from fleshy bonds (ghosts). Equally there may be just the suggestion of human previous presence with possible hints of transient occupation (trash etc.)

Zones go beyond unplaces in levels of eeriness since they become infested with agents that, though likely purely pneuminous, were not ever human. There is a tension. The residual human conceptual layer is there but this is a passive fading power. Behind or alongside it hides the actual zonal power. Zonal powers are more active. They are watching. Like Keelian ultraterrestrials, their actions are unfathomable. It is speculated that the receding human pneuma is somehow attractive to these forces, which is why unplaces are so susceptible to zonal infestation. The lack of human perception is key though. Human perceptual fields keep vector regions relatively safe -it is hard to break through all that hard conceptual reality- but when these powers are not exerted often the conceptual restraint fails.

To repeat: When you cannot see something its ontological status is unknown. 

We cannot know what kind of pneuminous restraints emit from the plants and animals that visit these places when we are not there. For that matter we do not know even if it is cogent to talk about such beings as discrete things outside of the immediate pneuminous field -for they may be just part of an interconnected flux (which of course they are anyway, but we mean by that a more severe metaphysical one in which their individuation at all is just our pure Kantian curse). Even accepting their status as perceiving agents, their conceptual imprinting powers will be radically different from ours. They may well be no ally of ours in keeping such places solid and indeed may in some circumstances contribute to destabilising the area and allowing zonal infestation.

“The akashic perpetual store of all information is not a necessary reality.” I informed P “You are wrong” he said back without batting an eyelid “It is the most necessary concept that is, it is true even if J is nothing but a figment of my mind.” “And how do you reason this?” “Simple. All I need is the continuity of all things. If everything exists in a continuum then past is no less present than future and present no more to be privileged than past or future.” “Why does this serve as guarantee? Why can I not simply have a present in which moves towards a not yet existent future and moves away from a past that disappears into nothing?” “If that were so then how precognition be possible?” “P, you infuriate me. It is precisely one of the contentious issues that notions like precognition are not possible.” “Yet you would concede the appearance of precognition is possible?” “I can scarcely deny it since I understand the term when you use it.” “Then implicitly you understand the ontology behind it, or minimally you allow it and since something akin to the akashic records is implied in the concept it follows that you understand its necessity.” “But this is not the same as its necessity.” “Is it not? Given your understanding of the concept of precognition, did you not find that the necessity of something like the akashic record?” “But precognition is not necessarily true.” “Yet its possibility is. Is that not all we can ask for of anything? That its possibility is true?” I rolled my eyes “What is J’s  number?” P began matter of factly “The number was obtained through a pack of playing cards. I shuffled the cards. Asked for the number to be revealed and then dealt out a number of cards. When I deemed the correct amount had been dealt out I stopped. I then added the number of the cards together, counting 11 for Jacks, 12 for Queens and so on.” “And what was the number?” “I obtained a number of course, however like a good scientist I felt the need to check my results so I performed the experiment again.” “And did you get the same result?” “Yes, or at least mostly yes. I believe I conducted it about 5 times in total with about 4 of these bringing about the same result.” “And what was the number?!” “The number was 47.” “Oh” I said, somehow disappointed, for I had believed that the number would be somehow significant sounding but this number sounded rather dull. “What do you mean ‘oh’?” said P, sounding almost hurt. “I don’t know, I don’t know what I was expecting, I suppose I imagined the number would be more…” “More what?” P looked irritated “More special sounding maybe? I don’t know, I don’t know what I thought.” “Your fantasy of let down is just the failure of the number to be 666, but not all spirits are the devil itself -if indeed that number even means that. 47 is a discovery. We do not know what the correspondences of spirit to number means. We only know -from the various texts- that it exists. Presumably my having J’s number will give me some kind of leverage over it.” I thought P’s usage of the term fantasy interesting, given he was engaging in some kind of fantasy of power of spirits but I did not say this. His face lit up and he continued “But this number is just the start. I have not been idle. It is but a clue that reveals a world of hidden connections. It is possibly the clue that enables us as a species to understand the necessary connection between the symbol and the symbolised.”

P leaned back in his chair and swiveled his eyes towards me. “How many Gods do you suppose there are?” This seemed like a ridiculous question and I told him so. “But why do you suppose it is so ridiculous?” came the reply. I did not feel, given P’s intelligence, that I really had to answer this question, however since he had asked it with a degree of sincerity I decided to answer. “It is ridiculous because firstly the idea of a God is totally incoherent and secondly even if we allow some sort of definition we will then have no actual way of answering the question. The only instance in which we can answer it is a kind of historical review of all the known religions and their Gods, though this too might prove tricky as there may be translation errors in some of the texts which will result in some entities which we might classify as minor spirits being classified as Gods and vice versa.” “You are right of course” said P “and yet when one has talked to the spirits themselves, do you not think that one is in a better position to answer this problem?” I cringed at his tone, which he had been effecting since he had been talking to J -a disembodied being of some kind. “I am not sure we can trust J’s pronouncements upon the matter any more than Jesus’ frankly” I replied somewhat curtly.

“I know what you mean” P began again “I just think, this time we have a better case to sort it out, I think I have the necessary proof, this side of the coin and the other so to speak.” I became confused “P you are confusing me today. This is not an unusual occurrence so I am not surprised by it however its regularity does not make it any less confusing. Presuming the two faces of the coin are somehow this reality and the one that J inhabits, what is the proof that you refer to?” “Who mentioned proof?” “You mentioned proof, you often mention proof, it is like a talismanic word to you.” “You misunderstand me, I did not ask the question of you, I was merely recalling a conversation with J in which he uttered those words.” “Go on…” “I was speaking to J about the problem, musing to myself almost upon the topic of proof when it said enigmatically ‘who mentioned proof?’ I said that I was thinking about proof, so probably I did. To this it remarked that proof shall be mine.” “And..?” “The presence left.” “So what was the proof?” “I didn’t understand its nature at first, indeed there would be some -I suppose you would count amongst them- who would say I still don’t understand it. Nevertheless the proof begins like this: Later on in the day I felt I should like to know the number of J.” “The number of J?” “Yes, you will be aware of the tradition of entities having numbers. I wished to know the number of J.” “And did you obtain it?” “I did.” “And what was this number?” “Before I tell you the number I must tell you how I obtained it.” “Then do so please, for I am eager to hear the number of J.” “I was not actually talking to J on this occasion, rather I chose to find this number out by a divinatory method. The reason for this is that the spirits can be mendacious and hence it is wise to sometimes bypass direct contact with them and employ a more truthful method of revelation. Divinatory methods are one such.” I felt a rising sense of rage and flabbergastation at this “P, have you not on previous occasions argued for how we should trust the spirits for function largely as just another consciousness, which -as your argument ran- we usually trust? Yet now you seek to bypass the mode of direct contact as untrustworthy!” “Am I to apply one rule to all situations? What foolishness do you speak? If I wish to obtain your bank details am I going to ask you for them? No I must use subterfuge and modern technological methods.” I raised an eyebrow. “Divination, bypasses the direct word of these entities and plugs straight into akashic data, which if checked suitably can on occasion be extremely reliable.”

 

Notes

The essential problem with the zone pertains to its ontology. In science fiction the zone may be unambiguously real -in Roadside Picnic it is clear that humans seem in no doubt that aliens have been (and gone) and the artifacts they left are recoverable and repetitively useable. Tarkovsky’s interpretation leaves things hanging a little more ambiguously, though the reality of at least some anomalous interference is rendered clear by the telekinetic glass movement by the mutant child at the end. The aporia in both though is the same -the uncertainty of golden-sphere/room’s ability to grant wishes.

The zone in this world has no such ontological clarification. NARPs reflect the fact that even if Kant is not actually right, his thesis hovers exactly on the borderland of anomaly. The question as to whether Kant is correct or not is unanswerable in a similar kind of manner. The Kantian limitation in this sense is applied to the epistemological status of his own transcendental idealism – it is simply one more metaphysic that, like God, we should bracket off as unknowable. What he does do though is highlight this ontological manifestation like it had never been highlighted before: the possibility of the subject’s being intertwined in the production of spatio-temporal reality.

We cannot properly know whether transcendental idealism or transcendental realism obtain. They remain in perpetual war in conceptual territory being fought for by agents (scientists, philosophers and thinkers who would consider themselves neither). They occupy an agnostic disjunctive status.

The wood becomes so tangled in an instant, I can almost not make out where to go. The zone itself is split in its interpretation. Does it obtain or is it psychological? This is almost pointless as a distinction. ‘Does it obtain?’ has two options: Is it real in the sense of ‘built into a reality external to NARPs’ or does it somehow ’emanate from them’ and yet still affect the seeming externality? ‘Is it psychological?’ is intended to restrict the domain to hallucination, though one could argue that a Jungian psychological take would mean this was the same as the ’emanates from us’ thesis. Usually though it is intended to cover those interpretations in which phenomena are perceived as anomalous, though in fact fall under the understanding of reality as already given. Psychological in this sense implies that no anomaly obtains as such. This is different from the umbratic possibility which affirms the reality of the phenomena as external from the conceptual being. Concepts being merely understanding of the phenomena from the  NARP perspective.

Proliferating paths can dimly be sketched by noting the ontology of various anomalies under either pneuminous, umbratic  or psychological schemas (these mean in a sense transcendentally ideal anomaly, transcendentally real anomaly or anomaly as hallucination to a transcendentally real world).

Reviewing various anomalies under these heuristics may be helpful.

Zonal Anomalies

Ghosts

Pneuminously ghosts are pure accretive formations; they are formed either by neurotic accretions freed from regional processors that have not dissolved, or by accretions formed by other NARPs that project the presence onto the relevant zone.

Umbratically ghosts are literal spirits of the dead that persist in this reality and have not moved on to wherever they should do. Such an ontology presupposes something like actual souls that exist independently of the body and have an existence external to it.

Psychologically ghosts are pure hallucination due to various neurological occurence. They have no existence in a real external world that persists in our absence.

UFOs

Pneuminously UFOs are accretive entities that take conceptual forms either of an autonomous or imposed nature. They can behave as ‘real’ in many ways, but can disappear as quickly as a dream fades -as they are just pneuma interfering with umbra and the interference may stop abruptly.

Umbratically UFOs are either ultra or extra terrestrial entities that exist autonomously in some other sense, yet for what ever reason manifest in our reality periodically.

Psychologically UFO’s are a mix up of meteorological phenomena, hallucination, satellites and airplanes. No such aerial anomaly is real outside of these explanations.

Synchronicity

Pneuminous synchronicity is interference in (our) reality from accretions of pneuma. Conceptual entities manifest poignantly to NARPs, though their may not actually be any particular message, only a pneuminous connection.

Umbratic synchronicity is potentially preordained harmony. This retains the reality of the metaphysical connection and decentres it from the NARPs influence. Another version would be the reality of certain powers that sought to convey messages that were of import to the NARP in question (see umbratic spirits).

Psychological synchronicity is purely statistical probability, confirmation bias and apohenia. No external reality altered in relation to the subject.

Cryptids

Pneuminous cryptids would be similar to Keelian Ultraterrestrials. Pure conceptual powers that have ruptured umbratic restraint and manifest with potent solidity, even capable of leaving traces, yet equally ontologically are created by NARP like powers of accretion. Their autonomy could still be real but not necessarily in the sense of living a life somewhere else.

Umbratic cryptids would be actual alien, terrestrial or ultra terrestrial entities capable of appearing in this reality. They would have a coherent existence, not contingent upon NARP conceptuality.

Psychological cryptids are hallucinations or mistaken actual animals.

Spirits (Angels, Demons etc)

Pneuminous spirits are pure pneuminous constructs. Though created by NARPs they may have a high level of autonomy. Magick/religion creates these entities. Such beings may be visible and capable of bringing out reality altering effects (Magick).

Umbratic spirits would suggest that such beings are real outside of human conceptuality e.g. as if Wierus orders of demons or the Lemegeton  were just a correct descriptions of how these beings were structured. Such a structure might easily involved ontologically real good and evil. Such beings would likewise be potentially visible at leas in certain states, and capable of altering reality (as we perceive it) under certain conditions.

Psychologically such spirits are just hallucination. They may the products of unhinged minds and in this sense dangerous, however never actually existent in the externality.

Telepathy

Pneuminous telepathy is just the tapping into another NARPs accretions and accessing them as if they were ones own.

Umbratic telepathy is entails something similar, though the mechanism would be discoverable as some kind of psi like substance -this is not possible for pneuma.

Psychological telepathy is just knowing someone well enough that thoughts coincide on occasion. Selection bias determine the importance of certain instances.

Telekinesis

Pneuminous telekinesis is the manipulation of a vector that would not ordinarily move without physical help. The accretion ‘moving’ is successfully applied to it in accordance with the will of the telekinetic NARP. The umbratic is ruptured in this way.

Umbratic telekinesis entails that a real force exists (like psi) manipulable in some instances such that physical object may be moved by certain NARPs.

Psychological telepathy does not occur, all instances of it are only apparent.

Poltergeist

Pneuminous poltergeist activity is likely autonomous accretive powers exerting umbratic warping. Little else can be said about it.

Umbratic poltergeist activity may be an actual spirit or ghost. Potentially also it could be the kind of energy discharge theory often touted. It could involve a potentially detectable force like psi.

Alien Abduction

Pneuminous alien abduction is an interaction with the alien accretion and the long standing myth accretion of abduction (which exists in faerie too). The individual may well have genuinely disappeared into the pure pneuminous realm, but they have not gone to a cogent other world or dimension.

Umbratic alien abduction is the being actually abducted by alien beings of whatever kind. The abduction was ‘real’ in various senses of the world. The individual was actually gone and the beings involved abducted the individual with an agenda.

Psychological alien abduction means no such abduction took place. Dream, hallucination and sleep paralysis are likely features of the experience.

Astral projection

Pneuminous astral projection means that the neurotic accretion exited the regional processor and was capable of entering a more flexible pneuminous state. Instantaneous travel and umbratic manipulation is possible in this state.

Umbratic astral projection means that there is such an energy body as the ‘astral’ body or potentially soul. This can exit the body under certain circumstances. Such a entity is potentially measurable.

Psychological astral projection entails no such entity ever left the physical body and the experience is just construct and memory from the existing mind.