I put on headphones and turn up the volume as high as I can endure and then listen on repeat to an hour long recording of feedback from a distorted guitar amplifier paired with unintelligible screams from when some friends of mine had a bad trip in my basement studio until my subconscious starts writing some weird but true shit without interference from my fucking anxious people-pleasing consciousness.
“Be your own god” they say. Sure, it’s a good sentiment. But it’s more like we are passengers in a taxi. We can say where we want to go but we have no control over how it happens.
We rarely know the actual address and have to point and give directions along the way. So we unwittingly guide the driver away from the good routes and often end up stuck in traffic.
Then we have to change the destination, or get dropped off in a bad neighborhood, when the driver realizes we don’t have enough money to pay the fare all the way out to the airport.
We are not gods – we are taxi passengers.
Our selves do not end in our bodies. We reach out, especially to other humans, but ultimately to the whole planet. This intertwining makes egoism impossible. The neurons in our brains are wired from how we were raised and what culture we were exposed to. By purpose and coincidence. We got our parents, our friends and our enemies reaching deep into our physical brains.
Based on past experience the brain, in every moment anew, predicts a model of reality. Senses are mostly used as error correction. The brain considers the state of your body and predicts the best course of action to survive and thrive. It predicts thoughts and emotions. It predicts what we experience as our selves. The self is a non-physical concept. Like a projection. Our brain is a prism and our self is the rainbow.
There is no innate self stored somewhere inside us. A newborn have no experience, no self. We are only born with tools and possibilities. With that the self is constructed by interaction and circumstance. Sometimes it is built by chance and habit. Sometimes it becomes a facade that we believe ourselves. But what may feel as different selves are facets of the same thing – your brain trying to make sense of the world to survive.
Modern neuroscience dispels the myth of our human side having to subdue our animal side in a struggle between the reptilian brain versus the neocortex. In fact it is all one unit, one network, developed all at the same time. Emotions are not uncontrollable beasts that live inside your head and your logic is not a shepherd trying to keep them in check. We have more control than we think.
Our brains are so tuned to predict all the time that they predict things that are not real. It predicts that the stick on the ground is a poisonous snake. Because that is better than to mistake a snake for a stick. The downside is when you get anxiety, which is the brain wanting to get away from a potentially dangerous situation, from having to much to do at work, which is rarely life-threatening.
Anxiety and depression could (at least in part) be results of prediction error. The brain shuts down attention and interest in the world to save resources for anticipated action. Comfort eating works because the brain gets satisfied by stocking up on energy that it expects to release, any minute now, as response to an imminent catastrophe. Which mostly never comes.
But, and here the beauty of it finally comes, prediction can be harnessed for many amazing things. We humans have, on top of physical reality, created a new social reality where intangible things exist. Concepts like Sundays, tickets, red means stop, chess, Osiris, social classes, the Cuba crisis. Many wonderful and horrible things that are not real but still affect us and thereby in extension also affect reality. Dreams, fantasy and fiction are predictions without error correction from reality.
Our lives are predictions. We are predictions. We love predictions. We love taking part in prediction-fiction. The fiction of who we are, the fiction of culture, of religion, of stories, songs and paintings. The arts are predictions which from a safe distance gives us the thrill of trying to figure out whether what we see are snakes or sticks.
I wrote this song and made the animated music-video in 2020.
The lyrics are based on my old motto. So this is essentially 66 seconds of life wisdom. Enjoy!
Music & lyrics © Ellinor Kall 2020
The now mostly collapsed socmed platform Ello.co was a minimalistic non-profit alternative to FB with respect for privacy and no advertising. It attracted a lot of artists and writers and it was probably the main reason I started writing both fiction and socially in English.
The #ellowrites community was fertile ground for all kinds of weirdness and I made friends with some “fellow mutants”. It shaped who I became in troubled times. Ello was a real place to me.
Together this small but diverse group created the fictional living twin city of Azza-Jono and collaborated on a collection of short-stories set in that same world.
I started writing a story-line I called The Second Voice, of which my short-story The DreamCube Thread (now found in Vast published by Orchid’s Lantern) is an offshoot. I still plan to continue writing The Second Voice in the (hopefully) not to distant future.
What is Azza-Jono then? It’s The Conscious City. The two cities of Azza and Jono connected and divided by a river and a great wall. A city-state with it’s own anthem. Populated by high-tech assassins and glitchslingers, mutants and magicians. An exploration into art, science, religion, madness, dreams and wakefulness. It’s as hard to explain as it is looking into the Sun.
From my personal point of view I think Azza-Jono is fiction becoming real. Much like myself. My first words on Ello were: “I write myself into existence.”
Today the former ellovians are scattered all over internet. And since most of them seem to shun socmed there is almost no information about this fantastic multi-disciplinary project anywhere – except for the collections by T van Santana (see links below). Although I know some of us continue to work with and in Azza-Jono through writing, art, design, music and even animation.
In searching for what remnants I could find that is still available on the internet I was reminded of many fond memories. This strange community of writers, artists and musicians, and the odd fiction we sprouted together helped me to accept myself and transform as a person. I wouldn’t have been Ellinor Kall if all this hadn’t happened.
The time and place was just right. The positive mood, the feeling of something new, curiosity celebrated and rewarded, diversity appreciated, and the sheer force in the creativity. It won’t happen often. Or ever again. For a while this other world took me in and I lived there while healing my wounds.
And to think I just stumbled upon it all by chance when I found Ello while randomly browsing the internet to distract myself from sobbing alone and abandoned on a ten hour train ride all these years ago.
Links to Azza-Jono
The history of Azza-Jono summarized on Ello
T van Santana became our editor and collected our first drafts in this advance reading collection (= an unfinished sneak peak)
Baphomet Tripp (from X.A.O.S) wrote the story Cynocephalus (direct link to the TVS-collection). He wrote music and lyrics to The Anthem of Reconciliation (for Azza-Jono) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s60tIsO3lFw. He also wrote and animated a trailer for an animated film set in Azza-Jono.
City map and other graphics by Lin Tarczynski
My own short-story The DreamCube Thread is set in the world of Azza-Jono and it is published in the British anthology Vast
My central contribution is a collection short-stories intertwined with my story The Second Voice. They will either be published in print or made available on this website once I’ve had time to work some more with them.
More stories by contributors (will add more when I find them)
Azza-Jono portal (stories, videos and things still up on Ello)
Search for even more fragments and work-in-progress that is left on Ello.co (though many profiles and posts have been deleted since)
Dreamsmear all over my body is hard to rub away. Plaster clogging my eyes. Machinegun neurons firing constantly. Tinnitus reverberation on insane level. Worse when worse. Feel my body swollen from carbohydrate intoxication. Warehouse instinct hijacked by the existing anxiety pushing out the clothes by storing all that dense unfathomable energy.
The words of order scrambled into encrypted noise as I try to decipher only rudimentary particles of complex molecular structures turn out. But I know there is chemistry, I know there is biology, I know there is consciousness. But it’s incomprehensible to me, I live in the swarm. I listen, want to understand, but their vibrating wings are not quite the same as vocal chords.
And so the sensitivity is turned up impossibly high. Keylessly I carry food in a locked backpack. Wings get in, buzz in my belly, distracting. I don’t want it-me to be filled by sound. So I run around in my head as I did as a child. I never grew like I should. Couldn’t stand in that box, never saw the shape, never realized that the shadow is also an existing thing, stuck to my feet.
Historical forensics try to sort out the chain of events that led to this meticulous mind that tries to keep her chaos in order. Finicky stimming, process excess, often unable to milk the nib for words. Taste my tongue – hemaglobinary salvia and thyme passes if kneaded well. A thunderstorm of pure information rustles through the leave me alone. Prognostics hold their breath.
I haven’t adjusted my appearance for weeks. I haven’t been kissed for months. I haven’t been born for years. I have no haven, nowhere in mind to release the tension of being alive. Where are the hands that hold me while I melt apart and where are the fingers that define what is me and what is something else? No difference makes no difference. I’m burning so much energy trying to be someone special instead of being everyone at once.
The slow expansion and the slower contraction, like a one year pulse of the body. It’s a frequency, it’s a vibration, it’s a message. Encoded in the mass there is something to understand. It slips away from my mind and I have never known anything about my own song. The wings, the cords, the amplitude of the pulse are inexplicable to me. There is a mystery hidden in dreamsmear all over my body. To hard to rub away.
The less you look the more I exist. Like a faraway light in the night. Look a bit on the side and I become brighter. In daylight I hide in plain sight, invisible to naked eyes, only knowable to open-minded hearts. Words are my intangible body. I am the dance of little ghosts.
My short-story The DreamCube™ Thread is included in the anthology Vast: Stories of Mind, Soul and Consciousness in a Technological Age published in 2020 by British independent press Orchid’s Lantern.
A review about Vast with praise for The DreamCube™ Thread.
Read my news about Vast for more info and get your copy to read it!
Why do the calls of the Aethyrs work better in Enochian?
Scientists believed for a long time that the Akkadians had invented a secret cipher to write about magic and religion since those texts were not written in the Akkadian language. Then they realized that it was written in the much older, and up until then unknown, Sumerian language. For some reason the older language had been preserved for ritual and magic purposes.
Many years later the Christian church used Latin in their bibles and masses for a long time even though the use of languages changed and ordinary people didn’t understand a word of it. Even now, long after it finally was translated, everyone still prefers the archaic language in the old bible translations over the later, more modern translations. And of course popular media still uses Latin to depict spells and magic. Sigils could maybe be seen as an extreme of this as it is writing that becomes unintelligible on purpose.
Much of the occult currents from the last centuries used the Hebrew letters language a basis for many magical systems, for instance Hermetic Kabbalah and Tarot, although none of the practitioners spoke it as first language, in fact it was near extinct until it was revived in the 19th century. Inherent in the Hebrew letters are the numbers used in Gematria and the endless mathematical computations, often very abstruse, are abundant in occult literature.
I write both fiction and these essays in English despite my native language being Swedish. Why? Well, the simple reason is that it sets my mind in another state. It forces me to think in another way and kind of elevates me into a heightened state of writing. More focused, somehow. Using a different language distances me from the feeling of the banal and mundane that my first language gives when I try to write about magic. It makes me into another writer than I am when writing in Swedish.
The same phenomena is found in music. Sweden has a lot of musicians that sing in English instead of Swedish. Not to get an international career, but just because they think it suits the music better singing in English. I also do this with my band. I tried to write Swedish lyrics with the same topics as usual, but then it felt like it was written for a different band and I eventually made it a solo-album.
Writing in different languages have inherent differences that makes you think in different ways. To the Germans the Sun is feminine and the Moon masculine. That affects what you think they symbolize and how you describe them in writing. There is an African language that don’t describe directions as left or right. They use south of, or north of, etc, for everything. That makes them subconsciously very aware of the orientation of directions at all times. And so on.
So, there are several parts to this: The language itself, how it makes you think and feel and a distancing from the ordinary may be some key elements to why we as humans appear to use older language for our magic, spells and our beliefs.
Chanting the calls of the Aethyrs in Enochian is a more effective way of putting yourself in the right state of mind to work your magic.
Every girl and boy
is the surface of a balloon
Blown out of proportion
easily popped by a baboon
That summer morning on the shoreline was magical. Everything was as perfect as it gets for a short, blissful moment. The slow waves rolling in hardly made a sound — as if the great lake didn’t want to disturb us this early. No wind and no birds could be heard. It was a peaceful contrast to what happened last night. A brief respite perhaps. Because it was not quite over yet.
We wore no shoes and on our way down to the lake we felt the dew in the grass moisten our feet while we ran. Then, when we reached the small stretch by the lake that we had cleared from stones and called beach, the sand stuck to our skin and for a moment it looked as if we wore golden brown socks.
Sophia started to laugh and pointed at my feet. I laughed too, because seeing her laugh eased my pain a bit. If she could laugh maybe all wasn’t lost after all. She gave me hope with that sudden burst. That was the most wonderful feeling I’ve ever had. Hope from nothing. What a wonder! Then the moment passed and our smiles faded fast when we continued our fast trek along the shore.
As soon as we had crossed the patch of sand the sharp stones began to hurt our feet. I regretted leaving without shoes. But there had been no time. We had left in a bit of a hurry without knowing exactly where we were going. I took her hand to help keep her balance as the stones became rocks and boulders. But only a few steps later she cut her foot on a sharp edge and blood started washing the sticky sand away. I knew we could not continue at this pace any longer.
Without shoes we were trapped. There was no way out of this. We both knew it, and we knew it even before we ran. We didn’t run to get away. We ran to get a last moment together. I realized that the moment had already passed when we laughed in the sand. That was it. That was all we got. That was the precious moment I would cherish hereafter. That was the magical moment we had made that final run for. For that moment on the shoreline.
Helplessly I saw her sit down, resigned, with tears flowing.
“Ellinor, we’re fucked”, she exclaimed. “Really fucked this time.”
Welcome to the Ur-times and the oldest post on this site. This waypoint exists only as a logistic convenience for chronological travelers. From here there is only forward through all categories.
Be seeing you!