Battle of the bastards

‘Battle of the Bastards’ is the ninth and penultimate episode of the sixth season of HBO’s fantasy television series Game of Thrones and its 59th episode overall. This episode is emblematic of the series. It starts with a very easy victory for Dany, much easier than Caesar’s Veni, Vidi, Vici after the Masters invade Meereen with their fleet.

Later we see the Battle of the North—the best melee battle I’ve ever seen from a cinematic point of view. Unlike Dany and the fire of her dragons that burn the invading fleet, in the Battle of the Bastards you can see the ruthless rawness of what war really is, which is reflected in this image of the poor men under the command of the bastard Jon that are about to fight in numerical disadvantage against the army of the bastard Ramsay.

Dany, on the other side of the world in Martin’s fiction, is so powerful that she’s even capable of thinking in exterminationist terms. At the pyramid, which is being bombarded from the ships in the bay, she says to Tyrion: ‘I will crucify the Masters. I will get their fleets afire, kill every last one of their soldiers and return their cities to the dirt. That is my plan’.

The contrast between the Battle of Meereen Bay and the Battle of the Bastards couldn’t be greater. While the men on Jon’s side struggle to remain alive in a battle very realistic thanks to special effects (it is difficult to film a great carnage of horses during direct combat), the SJW Dany is granted everything thanks to the fire of her dragons. It was a great blunder to put both battles in the same episode because it shows how grotesque all this feminism is where the conquering woman appears as ultra-privileged in her warrior powers while the men have to fight every inch of the ground with blood and iron, as two armies fought in the open fields of yesteryear.

In the discussion with Tyrone, her advisor, Dany, before riding her dragon, tells him that she’s completely different from her father, who wanted to burn King’s Landing including men, women and children, even those loyal to the mad king. Tyrion replies: ‘You’re talking about destroying entire cities. It’s not entirely different’.

Another infuriating thing about many episodes, including this one, is the stupid little music they play when Dany rides her dragon and everything comes out smooth and easy—really irritating, especially compared to the eerie music they play right before the Battle of the Bastards is fought. In addition, we must take into account that all this war of Dany against the Masters is due to the latter refusing to abandon the slave system. We can already imagine what fantastic cinema would be like today if the Confederates had won the American Civil War!

Just as in the pyramid of Meereen Dany wants to become genocidal and Tyrone begs her for restraint, in the gloomy north we also see a discussion after the war council in Jon’s tent: another argument between woman and man before the battle, and also with the roles reversed. Sansa says such obvious things to Jon about elemental strategy that it is sad to see the man’s naivety. Sansa also alerts Jon about the psyops Ramsay will use on the battlefield. As we’ll see later, Jon fell flat on one of those tricks, and had it not been for the unexpected intervention of the Knights of Vale at the last minute he would have lost the Battle of the Bastards.

The script is pure rubbish although the battle, as I said, is worth watching. But before it the scriptwriters inserted a scene that reminds me of what I said in ‘On Beth’s cute tits’ although now I’m not referring to breasts but the buttocks of a woman.

Theon and Yara arrive in Meereen and ally with Dany, offering their fleet in exchange for help in overthrowing Euron and acknowledging Yara’s claim on the Iron Islands. This happens after Dany won the battle in the bay thanks to her dragons. There is a memorable phrase in the dialogue of these two women. Yara said to Dany: ‘We’d like you to help us murder an uncle [Euron] or two who don’t think a woman’s fit to rule’. That happens when we look at the image below (from left to right, Tyrion, Dany, Yara, and Theon).

Sometimes it is necessary to introduce our most intimate insights to make a point. When the episode aired on June 19, 2016, I thought how incongruous it was. In this image those who have power are women: Tyrion, the queen’s adviser, is a dwarf and Theon was literally castrated by Ramsay. When I saw the scene in 2016, I thought that we were getting the spectacle of the buttocks of the hyper-masculinised Yara, who negotiates with Dany, but they show us her buttocks in a phallic way.

A few years ago I visited the Tower of London and saw Henry VIII’s armour. I was surprised by the large metallic bulge in the genital area of the armour. Whoever was directing the tour spoke of it as a psychological weapon or psyop. But here, and I’m following my soliloquy from years ago when the episode premiered, it is Yara’s buttocks that we see, who is not only a dyke but wants to be the first queen of the Iron Islands after killing Euron. The emasculated Theon who really has the right to rule the islands once again supports, now in front of Dany, Yara’s claim and in the end these two women reach an agreement right there, in the enclosure of the pyramid that we see above.

Anyone who remembers what I said in my article about Beth’s tits will see that a creature whose buttocks seduce us cannot be a great warrior that beats us too (or a world chess champion, in Beth’s case). This topic is so important that that essay of last November will give the title to the book of my next collection of articles, although this time the central theme will be feminism. What I noticed when I saw the episode for the first time is how the language of the images seduces us: how they put Yara in tight pants so that her buttocks are drawn next to the humble Theon, the broken man.

Women have bigger buttocks than us. Years before I had already noticed this trick and also by another pair of Jewish directors, the Wachowski brothers. I’ll never forget how in The Matrix we see very well drawn the buttocks under the pants of another woman, Trinity, when she is about to board a helicopter immediately after receiving a brief course to pilot it. In cinematic language, they used a low shot by showing us this brave female warrior from behind. But this time the psyop was not the armour protrusion for Henry VIII’s balls, but Trinity’s elegant buttocks in a nonsexual scene.

Published in: on April 23, 2021 at 1:23 pm  Comments Off on Battle of the bastards  

A response…

to what Walsh says: here.

Even racialist Americans choose Christian suicide. This is a screenshot of what Wallace’s site looks like today. Every day he changes images for it. Remember that Luther introduced the Old Testament to the Aryan mind by translating it to German. Taking into account what Jamie says below (in that thread, after Walsh’s comment), Wallace is one of those typical men who doesn’t realise that the parental abuse he suffered as a lad—he was involuntarily committed by his parents to a psychiatric ward—is unconsciously related to his clinging to their religion.

This psychological phenomenon is called ‘identifying with the perpetrator’, instead of rebelling (what I do in my 11-book autobiography).

Published in: on April 9, 2021 at 11:38 am  Comments Off on A response…  

My father’s tale

I’ll be busy for a few days and won’t post articles until I finish a course. But I would like to leave these lines during my absence. The thing is, when reading Karlheinz Deschner’s chapter on Pope Gregory I came across this sentence:

Archbishop Maximus did public penance in July 599, prostrate after hours in a street and shouting: ‘I have sinned against God and blessed Gregory’.

The anecdote reminded me of a story that my father told me decades ago. A king had to humble himself for days at the doors of the pope’s residence because he feared for the salvation of his soul: begging the Vicar of Christ to forgive him (I think the pope’s name was Gregory). Finally the pope deigned to open the doors and forgive him. My father told me this with enthusiasm, in the sense that even the most powerful king had to humble himself before the headperson of the Roman Catholic Church. The lad I was didn’t like that story, but only much later did I begin to understand my father’s mind.

One of the milestones in understanding why he was so destructive to me was Silvano Arieti’s book that I have already talked about in Day of Wrath. In Father, the sixth book of my series of eleven I quote some passages from Arieti that astonished me and I’m going to explain them with my own examples. Think of the baby monkeys that are sold as pets, how they cling to the owner as if she were a mother (the instinct is hard-wired in the creature as it’s vital not to fall from the trees). The point is that some adults deal with childhood trauma like these young pets do with their owners: by desperately clinging to authoritarian figures.

Arieti mentions his patients who, to use my example, hung themselves like little apes onto substitute images of their parents: a church, a political party, and even their own spouse. In Father I analyse how, in repressing his childhood traumas, he clung to no less than three defensive mechanisms: religion, nationalism, and his wife. But we are talking about pathological levels of hanging onto the surrogate parent, like an ape who never grows. The example that comes to mind is a biographer of Mary Baker Eddy who recounted that one of her most faithful disciples declared that even if she had seen Mrs. Eddy commit a crime, she wouldn’t believe her own eyes!

That is the level of co-dependent subjugation my father wielded regarding his church, the nationalist myths of the country where he was raised, and his wife. So when in my adolescence my mother went crazy my father went crazy too: what in my books I’ve called the captive mind or folie à deux.

I am not going to explain here everything I said in my sixth book in Spanish. The English speaker can order a copy of my first book to get an idea (see Letter to mom Medusa on the sidebar). What I want to get to is that some insecure people tend to fall into a state of folie à deux not only with the wife, but with the church or political party to which they belong. Analogous cases of Eddy’s disciple are endemic, for example, when I try to argue with those who cannot conceive that Mesoamerican Indians ate their children despite the overwhelming evidence from the first ethnologist of the American continent.

Once the defence mechanism is established, for instance the nationalistic pride of some Mexicans, the subject is capable of the most irrational scepticism before the evidence for the simple fact that what he is doing is protecting a worldview, his ego or substitute parent. From this angle we can understand why even some Jew-wise racialists, as we saw in my post yesterday, don’t tolerate that one fails to honour the god of the Jews. That powerful archetype functions like a surrogate parent.

Arieti’s book is entitled Interpretation of Schizophrenia and, although it deals with psychiatric cases, as I read it I realised that it could apply equally to an enormous number of people who have never been diagnosed psychiatrically.

My father comes to mind. He was enthusiastic about the pious tale of the pope who made a king humble himself in Rome. Now many Americans, equally childish, desire a powerful father in the form of the State and are excited that the country of the First Amendment will soon repudiate that amendment. It doesn’t matter whether the defence mechanism is religious or political: the psychological need is the same. Just as Eddy’s disciple wouldn’t believe her eyes as Mrs. Eddy became a god-like figure, I have met people who deny the historicity of Lenin’s and Stalin’s crimes.

The drive that compels us—to quote the lyrics of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony—to believe in ‘a loving Father behind the starry vault’ means that Beethoven had a drunken father who, as a child, often beat him. We are mammals and, as the monkey of the anecdote, the unconscious need to have a surrogate father once our dad fails is infinite: a Christian attempt to heal childhood traumas. But it is deceptive magic because Yahweh is not our father, he’s our enemy.

Those who haven’t read my essay ‘God’, a page from one of my eleven books, could read it now.

Published in: on February 2, 2021 at 6:37 pm  Comments Off on My father’s tale  

Whipping the fog and pride

‘It was as useless to fight against the interpretations of ignorance as to whip the fog’.

—George Elliot, Middlemarch

Throughout the first decades of my life I was very naive. I believed that it was possible to reason with people simply by citing facts and solid arguments based on those facts. I hadn’t realised that humanity is a failed species, and that throughout civilisations humans have believed simply what they want to believe, even if they are the most horrible and cruel religions or secular ideologies.

After reading Schopenhauer I realised that everything has to do with the will, and that it is impossible to change the worldview of an ordinary human unless one first gains his will.

When I learned in my twenties of liberal Christian criticism about the historicity of New Testament accounts, in my infinite naivety I believed that I could use that knowledge to argue with my father. For example, I once told him that Herod’s massacre of the innocents could not be historical since Flavius Josephus, the historian of the 1st century of our era, would not have overlooked it in his famous history of Jewry. But Josephus doesn’t mention it. The only thing my father did was get angry, and of course my solid argument didn’t make the slightest dent in his traditional Catholic worldview.

The same I came to observe with the people of the left whom I dealt with. As my visitors know, I grew up in a country in Latin America. In the days before the internet, my acquaintances were not interested in what could be accessed through the cultural magazines of the country, for example, the magazine Vuelta by Octavio Paz: who criticised Marxism-Leninism. The left-wing people whom I dealt with weren’t interested in Paz’s magazine, even though he was the Spanish speaker whose prose was the most lyrical in his day.

(Left, Juan del Río and his wife, who invited me to enter Eschatology in December 1978. Both have already died.) Likewise, when I began to apostatise from Eschatology, a cult of the New Age type in which I spent some years of my life (see the first of my essays in Daybreak), my teacher Juan del Río didn’t answer any of my arguments even when I sent them in writing. Juan died because eschatologists believe that all diseases have a psychosomatic aetiology, and despite having the financial means, a colon cancer that tormented him for years wasn’t properly treated. In his book-review ‘Do not rely on “mental healing”, scepticism is healthy’, the American S. Currie tells about a similar case:

My mother left leather-bound editions of The Sickle (1918) and The Sharp Sickle (1938) [the textbooks of Eschatology] to me before she passed away. She used to read to me from these books on Sundays when I was young. I believe her mother, my grandmother, originally introduced her to these books when she was a young woman. Both my mother and grandmother died of colon cancer. My father was a physician. In my mother’s case, she kept her early symptoms secret from my Dad and everyone else so that she could work on them via ‘mental healing’. When at last she did tell my Dad and she went to her doctor, it was too late. I both love these books as my mother’s close possessions, and despise them for encouraging her to ignore modern medicine. I will not leave them to my children.

Some time later, now with the advantage of the internet, I discovered the forums of white nationalists, and it happened exactly the same that had happened to me with my father, the Latin American leftists and the eschatologists: they don’t tolerate cognitive dissonance. If they tolerated it the first thing they would do would be a severe examination of conscience of how it is possible to be Jew-wise and at the same time bend the knee before the god of the Jews. It took me a few years to realise that white nationalists are as closed-minded as my father, the people of the old left that I dealt with, and the eschatologists.

For the record, I have been in this world for over sixty years, and this has been my experience with the common human. Trying to fight ignorance with all of them has been like whipping the fog: a pointless experience. I’m not referring to one hundred percent of Christians, leftists or white nationalists because it is obvious that there are exceptions. I mean the bulk of the population.

What they all lack is a little humility. I abandoned Christianity, leftist ideologies, Eschatology and White Nationalism out of humility (now I don’t consider myself a white nationalist but rather a ‘priest of the 14 words’ to distinguish myself from them): humility to face tough or ugly facts. What all these people suffer from is pride, the original sin to quote their own vocabulary.

Published in: on January 23, 2021 at 1:42 pm  Comments Off on Whipping the fog and pride  

Folie en masse

‘Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, one by one’. —Charles Mackay.

This quotation comes from a book first published in 1841.

Published in: on January 23, 2021 at 12:01 am  Comments Off on Folie en masse  

On Scott Peck

Thanks to an article by Greg Johnson, almost a decade ago I got to know the work of M. Scott Peck (1936-2005). I even wrote a post on this site about it, ‘My evil parents’ which, over time, I changed the status from a public article to a private article. Peck, who also had abusive parents—and also when he was in his middle teens—tried to define evil scientifically. He didn’t make it, as we’ll see at the end of this post.

I would like to quote what Wikipedia says about Peck’s philosophy to illustrate something I say in one of my books in Spanish: it is useful to understand abusive parents to know why the white race commits suicide.

Peck discusses evil in his book People of the Lie: The Hope for Healing Human Evil, and also in a chapter of The Road Less Traveled. Peck characterises evil as a malignant type of self-righteousness in which there is an active rather than passive refusal to tolerate imperfection—sin—and its consequent guilt.

This attitude is the Leitmotif of the phenomenon I analyse in the sixth of my eleven books, titled Padre. But it is also typical of those anti-Semites who, not wanting to repudiate their parents’ religion, continue to obey the New Testament commands of the god of the Jews. The self-righteousness of my late father and those anti-Semites who see nothing wrong in Judeo-Christianity is limitless.

This syndrome results in a projection of evil onto selected specific innocent victims, often children; which is the paradoxical mechanism by which the People of the Lie commit their evil.

Interestingly, in his article Johnson uses this observation from Peck to talk about another topic, the self-righteous Jews. But Peck used it when talking about abusive parents.

Peck argues that these people are the most difficult of all to deal with. He describes in some detail several individual cases involving his patients. In one case which Peck considers as the most typical because of its subtlety, he describes Roger, a depressed teenage son of respected, well-off parents. In a series of parental decisions justified by often subtle distortions of the truth, they exhibit a consistent disregard for their son’s feelings, and a consistent willingness to destroy his growth.

I rarely translate intimate passages from my autobiographical books, but this willingness to stop the growth of a lad reminds me of the very first page of the first of my eleven books. On the other hand, by repudiating National Socialism, white nationalists also show a willingness to stop their growth because WN is merely a stepping-stone that helps us cross the psychological Rubicon, from Normieland to NS.

With false rationality and normality, they [the parents] aggressively refuse to consider that they are in any way responsible for his resultant depression, eventually suggesting his condition must be incurable and genetic.

In my research of psychiatry I found academic studies of millions of kids on Ritalin to force them to study stupid subjects. Pseudoscientific psychiatry blames the genes of Aryan boys who rebel against the traditional school program. Similarly, as I said in ‘Christmas Eve’, it is abhorrent for some nationalists to blame their genes for pathological altruism rather than the religion of their parents: where the problem lies.

Peck makes a distinction between those who are on their way to becoming evil and those who have already crossed the line and are irretrievably evil… Those who have crossed the line and are irretrievably evil are described as having malignant narcissism.

It was my parents’ malignant narcissism that rendered them incapable of seeing what they were doing to me and my sister (the subject of my first, sixth, seventh and eighth books). But there is also evil narcissism in those American nationalists who don’t want to see that the axes on which their nation was founded, capitalism and a branch of Protestantism that admired the Old Testament, would have devastating consequences on their history.

Evil is described by Peck as ‘militant ignorance’… Peck argues that while most people are conscious of this, at least on some level, those that are evil actively and militantly refuse this consciousness. Peck considers those he calls evil to be attempting to escape and hide from their own conscience through self-deception.

This reminds me very strongly of my essay on ‘God’ that I have linked several times on this site. But most white nationalists also militate in their ignorance by not wanting to ponder on what we say on the masthead of this site.

According to Peck, an evil person is consistently self-deceiving, with the intent of avoiding guilt and maintaining a self-image of perfection; deceives others as a consequence of his own self-deception and projects his or her evils and sins onto very specific targets—scapegoats—while being apparently normal with everyone else; maintains a high level of respectability, and lies incessantly to [conceal] his or her sins.

What better portrait of my parents when they were abusive towards us! But aren’t anti-Semites fooling themselves with their scapegoats while at the same time they, the anti-Semites, bend their knees to the god of the Jews?

An evil person is characterised not so much by the magnitude of their sins, but by their consistency of destructiveness; is unable to think from the viewpoint of their victim (scapegoating), and has a covert intolerance to criticism and other forms of narcissistic injury.

Once again, what a perfect description of what I wrote about my father in my sixth book (or about my mother in my first and eighth books)! But why don’t American nationalists back down and recognise that their nation started wrong; in the words of Sebastian Ronin, predestined to become New Zion?

Most evil people realise the evil deep within themselves, but are unable to tolerate the pain of introspection, or admit to themselves that they are evil.

It’s amazing how Peck’s psychological insights continue to perfectly describe what I wrote in my sixth book, which recounts several of my confrontations with my father à la Toxic Parents. But can those nationalists who exclusively blame the kikes tolerate enough introspection and receive my Christmas present?

Thus, they constantly run away from their evil by putting themselves in a position of moral superiority and putting the focus of evil on others. Evil is an extreme form of what Peck, in The Road Less Traveled, calls a character and personality disorder.

Indeed: my parents used to project the evil of the family on me and my late sister. Similarly, some American southern nationalists use terms like WN 101 and WN 102 as if their repudiation of Rockwell’s neo-Nazism were an advance (‘moral superiority’), not a regression.

Though the topic of evil has historically been the domain of religion, Peck makes great efforts to keep much of his discussion on a scientific basis, explaining the specific psychological mechanisms by which evil operates. He was also particularly conscious of the danger of a psychology of evil being misused for personal or political ends. Peck considered that such a psychology should be used with great care, as falsely labelling people as evil is one of the very characteristics of evil.

In the Letter to Mother Medusa (see sidebar) we read that my mother began to see the devil in me when I reached puberty, but my only sin was that I had started to transvalue my Christian values. There are still some people in the racialist right who falsely label Nazi Germany as evil: the only European nation that had begun to transvalue Judeo-Christian values.

He argued that a diagnosis of evil should come from the standpoint of healing and safety for its victims, but also with the possibility, even if remote, that the evil themselves may be cured.

My father died unredeemed but in theory nationalists may be cured as they’re still alive. But this would require that they swallowed their pride by recognising they are stuck in the middle of the psychological Rubicon, and that Uncle Adolf’s way was and is the only way.

Ultimately, Peck says that evil arises out of free choice. He describes it thus: Every person stands at a crossroads, with one path leading to God, and the other path leading to the devil.

Peck was another American who got stuck in the middle of the river until he died. He never realised that the religion of his Quaker parents was inherently perverse. For his ‘scientific’ definition of sin to be truly scientific, the word devil would have to be replaced by evil. Always keep in mind my article ‘God’ linked above, which also appears in Day of Wrath.

Published in: on December 28, 2020 at 1:58 pm  Comments (2)  

Christmas present

A paradigm shift

After posting ‘Christmas Eve’ and trying to capture some vitamin D by sunning myself on the roof of the house, I came up with an idea that reflects the point of view of this site.

Yesterday I read David Irving’s article on The Unz Review where he talks about the sabotage that Jewry has inflicted on him over the years due to his biographies of the most prominent personalities of the Third Reich. I think what Irving says is true, and I have no objection to what he wrote. But what most struck me is that every time Jewish associations complained in various countries on both sides of the Atlantic, it was the Gentile authorities who took the repressive measures against Irving.

As Thomas Kuhn well saw, the same information can be processed in a completely different way between two subjects. So different that, depending on how we process the info, the paradigm shifts. In science, the classic paradigm shift would be from the geocentric to the heliocentric system. Although 17th century astronomers had exactly the same information, it depended on how they interpreted the data.

I have already posted the following caricature on this site but it is necessary to repost it, as it reflects the paradigm shift from the JQ, which currently reigns in white nationalism, to the CQ—Christian question—that I propose. The caricature is interpreted by some white nationalists as archetypal Jewish subversion, as if to imply that the kikes hypnotised us through religion.

Regardless of whether or not that was the intention of the caricaturist, I see the same information differently. The kike didn’t hypnotise us. There is white agency. Just look at the faces of these white idiots. They simply love what the kike tells them. It’s obvious to me that for two millennia white Christians have been willingly indulging in evil by following the gospel. And the same can be said for secular white nationalists who continue to subscribe the same ethical code that we see in the caricature.

The caricature shows a malicious Jew selling us Christian ethics. The orthodox interpretation of our decline, which we see every day on The Occidental Observer, blames the Jew. But with the same info that MacDonald sees I see whites as the real culprits. Who dares to believe such bullshit, the white family in the above caricature? The same info can be interpreted depending on our internal will. While white nationalists see a couple of kike silhouettes, I see in ochre colour the bitter cup that Christianity made us drink since Constantine.

The first image above can also be used as an illustration of a paradigm shift. Who to blame: the Jew who wants to sell us the teachings of Jesus or the white folk who candidly accepts them? Who is worse: the white imbecile or the foreign subversive?

In my life I have hardly dealt with Jews. Two of my classmates in elementary school were Jewish, and I only met a single Jew in high school (about whom I wrote a critical essay in the updated edition of The Grail). From my twenties to middle age I only superficially treated a couple of Jewesses: colleagues of my family in the cultural milieu of the country where I live. I never got on closely with any of them. But about the Christians or secular Gentiles I could tell hundreds of anecdotes: they are exactly like the white imbeciles of the first image.

The idea that occurred to me while sunbathing comes from a very specific example: what happened to me on the Gates of Vienna blogsite in 2009 and 2010.

Gates of Vienna is the perfect microcosm of what happens across the West; for instance, what happened to Irving with the Gentiles who obeyed the whining Jewry. As can be seen from my earliest posts when The West’s Darkest Hour was not launched by WordPress platform but Blogspot, when a Jew complained to Ned May (the Gentile admin of Gates of Vienna) because of what some Jew-wise commenters said, May immediately obeyed the Jew to censor the commenters.

For the evolution of my thought this was a microcosm of what happens on a large scale throughout the West! It took me about a year to give up Gates of Vienna and to grasp that Jewish subversion is, ultimately, white suicide. Thanks Ned!

The one who had power in the Gates of Vienna forum was the Christian Ned May, not the complaining Jew. May could let these gentiles comment about the JQ but he didn’t do it. The Jew complained just as the other Jews have been complaining in various countries, as David Irving recounts, until whites obey. And just as happened to me in the obscure site Gates of Vienna, worldwide gentile authorities banned Irving (and many others) from various countries simply for obeying the complaining Jew.

That sort of thing happens when you are imbecile enough to accept the code of ethics of the first image above.

Sometime after I stopped commenting on Gates of Vienna I received an email from an intelligent woman who told me that the dynamics continued the same in that forum: the Jew complained and May obeyed. Anyone who hasn’t had an exasperating experience like the one I had at that forum won’t understand what a paradigm shift means, from Jewish silhouettes to the poisonous chalice that whites like to drink. Exactly the same information—let’s say the Irving article I read—makes white nationalists and I see things as completely different objects.

Published in: on December 25, 2020 at 1:35 am  Comments (11)  

Nobody wanted to listen, 9

Ronald Laing and anti-psychiatry

What’s written above leads me to a corollary to my book How to Murder Your Child’s Soul. The universal stubbornness or blindness about the ravages resulting from parental abuse is the cause of the existence of psychiatry. Because parents are taboo, for more than a century the profession has tried to find the source of mental disorders on the wrong side, the body. Parents are not only publicly untouchable: we are not even allowed to see their actions in the solitude of our bedrooms. So, when uncontaminated by social underpinnings, a child dares to say that his parental kings go naked, society completely loses its cool and labels the sane one who has told the truth as crazy. Through the involuntary administration of drugs it assaults the brain not of the disturbed parents, but of the child (analogously, in the former Soviet Union it was the sanest people, the dissidents, who were injected with antipsychotics). This was the tragedy that I tried to denounce in my previous books, and it is perfectly explainable if we start from the fact that the whole society strives to be blind on this matter.

A world that insists on seeing things in photographic negative can only (1) attack the child victim, or (2) ignore the adult in a literary search for his lost time. If such a vision in photonegative didn’t exist, bio-psychiatry wouldn’t exist: our eyes and hearts would make us see the toll that abuse entails. Psychic disturbances would be the province of the psychologist, and it would be seen as nonsense that they would be the province of the physician. It is more than ironic that the greatest critics of psychiatry have contributed, with their blindness, to perpetuate the pseudoscience they try to debunk.

To explain this situation, I would like to mention that in 2005 an American wrote me a letter. After reading ‘Why Psychiatry is a False Science’ published as an appendix to my previous book (the article that Laurence Simon refused to publish), he complained that after so many decades of activism critics of psychiatry hadn’t made a dent in the public conscience. The key to understanding this is that the critics themselves suffer from a blind spot in the centre of their vision: something similar to the black strip that appears on pay-TV channels. If the critics refuse to see what is central, that parental abuse causes neuroses and psychoses, and if it is from this black strip that it is intended to enlighten others, it shouldn’t be surprising that the public conscience hasn’t awakened.

______ 卐 ______

 
Interpolated note for this site:

Exactly the same happens to white nationalists, as Mike has told us on this site: ‘Whatever you want to call it, thinking you can aid in saving the white race while, at the same time, bending the knee to Jewish deities (Yahweh and Yeshua) is some kind of combination of insane, dishonest, cowardly, naive, or very stupid. To bottom line it, it won’t and can’t work’.

I used Mike’s words to debunk MacDonald at the end of my Daybreak.

______ 卐 ______

 
To clarify this point, I will now refer to those professionals who didn’t suffer from this blind spot. Unlike Szasz and Breggin’s epigones, Lidz, Laing, Arieti and others pointed to parents as responsible for the psychoses in their patients. But even these and many other psychiatrists didn’t sympathise with the victim with the integrity and empathy that Miller and I do. For example, in the Letter I quoted Theodore Lidz:

I also find it very distressing that because the parents’ attitudes and interactions are important determinants of schizophrenic disorders, some therapists and family caseworkers treat parents as villains who have ruined the lives of their patients.

Although I barely caught a glimpse of it when I wrote the Letter, now I clearly see in this sentence the typical fears to speak, without mincing words, of parental guilt. By resisting saying that abusive parents are what they are—the villains in the child’s movie—Lidz advised taking the victim away from his parent. The difference with Miller cannot be greater, who advises keeping the aggressor away from home. What’s the point of moving, say, a pubescent girl raped by her father if the aggressor stays at home, waiting for the next little sister to grow up to molest her too? But sexual abuse isn’t the most common.

At the time of reviewing this chapter, as of mid-2008, twenty-eight nations have prohibited corporal punishment of children. The dates indicate the year the legislation came into force, starting with the country that provided the example: Sweden (1979); Finland (1983); Norway (1987); Austria (1989); Cyprus (1994); Latvia (1998); Croatia (1999); Bulgaria, Israel and Germany (2000); Iceland (2003); Romania and Ukraine (2004); Hungary (2005); Greece (2006), Chile, Holland, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain, Uruguay and Venezuela (2007); Costa Rica, Italy, Japan, Malta and South Africa (2008). In Iceland, a country that illustrates Miller’s advice, the penalties for parents go up to three years in prison or a high fine. Note that these countries have omitted to include psychological and emotional abuse, which can be equally destructive, or even more so, since all bruises are internal (think of the Helfgott case and countless other schizogenic parents). Despite these legislative advances, these societies still cannot see other forms of undermining the emotional integrity of the children. Laing, who did focus on internal injuries, was closer to Miller than Lidz when he came to blatantly blame the maddening parents. But like Szasz, Laing philosophised from an ivory tower: cold and distant reason from the victim and his feelings, as was fashionable in the existential philosophy of his time. Much more reached the real person those who, without any philosophical ballast, addressed the issue of domestic violence: a revolution in psychology that began in the 1970s and 1980s and isn’t yet over. In the first chapter of The Divided Self (1960) entitled ‘The existential-phenomenological foundations for a science of persons’ Laing wrote:

It seems extraordinary that whereas the physical and biological sciences of it-processes have generally won the day against tendencies to personalize the world of things or to read human intentions into the animal world, an authentic science of persons has hardly got started by reason of the inveterate tendency to depersonalize or reify persons.

Laing refers to mental health professionals in particular and the social sciences in general.

If it is held that to be unbiased one should be ‘objective’ in the sense of depersonalizing the person who is the ‘object’ of our study, any temptation to do this under the impression that one is thereby being scientific must be rigorously resisted. Depersonalization in a theory that is intended to be a theory of persons is as false as schizoid depersonalization of others and is no less ultimately an intentional act. Although conducted in the name of science, such reification yields false ‘knowledge’. It is just as pathetic a fallacy as the false personalization of things.

In philosophising about the autobiographical genre, I came to these conclusions on my own. Animism and bio-reductionism are antithetical psychopathologies, one primitive and tribal and the other sophisticated and urban. And this objectifying people reminds me of the dehumanised language of the analyst Solbein: ‘Those are common clinical experiences’. [Interpolated note for this blog: See also Krist Krusher’s recent comment on this site.] Laing continues:

It is unfortunate that personal and subjective are words so abused as to have no power to convey any genuine act of seeing the other as person (if we mean this we have to revert to ‘objective’), but imply immediately that one is merging one’s own feelings and attitudes into one’s study of the other in such a way as to distort our perception of him. In contrast to the reputable ‘objective’ or ‘scientific’, we have the disreputable ‘subjective’, ‘intuitive’, or, worst of all, ‘mystical’. It is interesting, for example, that one frequently encounters ‘merely’ before subjective, whereas it is almost inconceivable to speak of anyone being ‘merely’ objective.

So far I’m in perfect agreement with Laing. Remember the passage of the two universes, the empirical and the interior; and that the existence of the subjective universe is so real that it is enough to think about our death to verify it [mentioned in the first part of the book]. However, Laing adds:

The greatest psychopathologist has been Freud. Freud was a hero. He descended to the ‘Underworld’ and met there stark terrors. He carried with him his theory as a Medusa’s head which turned these terrors to stone. We who follow Freud have the benefit of the knowledge he brought back with him and conveyed to us.

As I pointed out in my previous book, for Jeffrey Masson psychoanalysis was born as a betrayal of women. The Oedipus complex was nothing more than a grotesque attempt to cast guilt on the victims who came to Freud’s office to tell him stories of incest. Analytic theory is the diametrically opposite of wielding the head of the Medusa. If there is such a thing as the antithesis of the hero, that was Sigmund Freud: an ethnic Jew who, although he reached the threshold, was afraid to enter the Underworld and face pure terrors (remember my dreams when commenting on Giorgio de Chirico’s painting). Laing, an idol in my twenties, portrayed Freud in photographic negative and saw the dark as bright. Like many intellectuals of his day, Laing was seduced by the apotheosis of the Vienna quack, something in which Szasz was much more cautious.

When I reread Laing, I did so with a renewed mind after reading Masson, Szasz, and other critics of the psychoanalytic movement. In my rereading of the last chapter of The Divided Self I realised that Julie, one of Laing’s patients, was admitted to a psychiatric ward for almost a decade. If Laing himself hadn’t suffered from the scientific objectivity that he criticises, he would have empathised with Julie denouncing those who locked her up. True, in stark contrast to Szasz and Simon, Laing blamed mothers like Julie’s for their daughter’s psychosis. However, in The Divided Self he never made it clear that the mere fact of locking her up could aggravate her condition. In what I am close to Laing is that when reading his essay one is left under the impression that Julie’s mother, more than psychiatry, ‘murdered a girl’. These are the words of Julie speaking parabolically about herself: she meant that her mother murdered her tender soul. Now, the person Julie, not the object of Laing’s essay, needed to be taken away from the psychiatric hospital and from the mother who committed her; to take her to live far from her ‘murderer’. When she began her psychotic crisis at seventeen years old and said ‘a little girl was murdered’ Julie thought that she should inform the police about the crime.

Her delirium was closer to Miller’s posture than to the psychiatric that locked her up. The laws of a nation should seek to lock up the maddening parent, not the victim (who, in a state of florid psychosis, would have to be cared for in a non-repressive enclosure like the one that Laing presided over). In a just society that doesn’t see reality in the photonegative, this would naturally be done through the police. But in her chapter on Julie, Laing never suggests this. In fact, both the word victim and an exhortation of justice are the great absent in The Divided Self. Also, Laing doesn’t denounce the psychiatric re-victimisation of other women clearly maddened by their family. In another of his famous books, The Politics of Experience, he limits himself to reproaching society for misunderstanding psychoses. Sometimes Laing even seems to participate in the universal fear of touching the parent. Speaking of Julie’s mother, Laing mentions one of the fashionable concepts in the 1950s, the ‘schizophrenogenic mother’ but is quick to add that, fortunately in his opinion, there was no other ‘witch hunt’ in history: an equivocal comparison with women labelled witches centuries ago. If there is one thing the world needs, through the law that Miller outlines, it is to bring to justice every parent who murders children souls. The basic pathology of our society is that this crime, and this crime alone, must remain not only unpunished but invisible. For example, Silvano Arieti, Laing’s colleague across the Atlantic, talked a lot about psychotherapy in Interpretation of Schizophrenia. But he never proposed any social engineering to redress the problem of maddening parents; and he didn’t do so despite the fact that Arieti blames them for the psychotic state of his patients.

‘To my mother and father’ reads the dedication of Laing’s The Divided Self. ‘To my parents’, the dedication of Arieti’s Interpretation of schizophrenia (etymologically, schizophrenia means a divided self). Naturally, the most sophisticated thinkers of insanity also had parents. (In my next book we will hear a class about the problem of attachment with the perpetrator that explains the lukewarmness of Laing, Arieti and others.) Not until the middle of The Divided Self Laing speaks openly about abusive parents. In contrast, Miller and I do it from the first page of our writing, and passionately.

After reading The Divided Self, the best of Laing’s essays, I was convinced that there can be no such thing as a science of subjects. Seen from the outside, the subject inevitably becomes an object: an offense for those who want to speak with their own voice. This is precisely the foundational flaw of academic psychology. If science is the study of the empirical world there can be no such thing as a ‘science of persons’, only people writing about their lives. Although Laing had much more heart than Freud, and this puts him on a higher level to understand the tragedy of the person in crisis, he starts from the same objectivist position. His essays and those of Lidz are, at best, a solidary approach to the disturbed subject. It’s funny that in The Divided Self Laing quotes Sartre: ‘I am not fond of the word psychological. There is no such thing as the psychological. Let us say that one can improve the biography of the person’. I would go further. The direct study of a soul in psychotic hell can only come from the pen of someone who, like Modrow, speaks in the first person singular.

Nobody wanted to listen, 5

The opinion of psychologists

‘Where are the men?’ the little prince at last took up the conversation again. ‘It is a little lonely in the desert…’

‘It is also lonely among men’, the snake said.

—Antoine de Saint-Exupéry


It may be assumed that Tere simply followed the dictates of traditional morality, but that if I told my testimony to a professional psychologist I would find the much sought after oasis. Nothing further from the truth. In the same multi-family apartment complex where I lived with Tere’s family, I met the psychologist Angelica. She read a version of my Letter and other texts that bear certain similarities with what is written in the narrative part of this book. Let’s see what happened when the psychology teacher read my stuff. I will cite my diary and later some of her letters that we exchanged. I had spoken to Angelica on the phone and I surprised her at the moment when she read the climax of my Letter:

July 25, 1998. I interrupted Angelica right in the passage of ‘The Medusa’! She said that it’s very good; that she doesn’t read out of obligation but because she’s enjoying it a lot; that the psychological references are very good and that she congratulates me. She still doesn’t get to the toughest pages. Right there I interrupted her.

August 12 and 13. Nothing new she told me. We only talked about my next trip. Even when I mentioned Medusa, nothing came out except that she said ‘I had read Laing again’.

Compassion doesn’t exist.

Two years later, I sent Angelica the manuscript of my second book. As psychologists are colleagues of psychiatrists, I was particularly interested in having her tell me something about such a ruthless exposé of psychiatry: something that had never before come from the pen of a fellow countryman. In 2000 she sent me an email note: ‘I think you already handle more psychology than I do. What’s more, I feel myself behind in clinic stuff; just finished my sabbatical and started writing a textbook. I really think you have a lot of easiness to express your ideas’.

Thus the same story and the same lack of compassion of two years ago was repeated. Although Angelica intended to flatter me, her missive upset me. Not only a couple of years before she hadn’t told me anything—like Tere—about the tragedy in my family with my parents. Now she wasn’t saying a word to me about the profession that helped ruin my teenage life. I must say that her position is similar to that of some friends who have focused exclusively on the literary aspect of my Letter: something that doesn’t interest me. The sole purpose of writing had been for someone to tell me something about the agony I suffered as a teenager; that it would show some indignation towards the aggressors and a society that allows such things!

Angelica had gone to live in La Paz. Due to her lack of compassion I decided to get away from her as I decided to get away from Tere. To my surprise, four years after her letter, Angelica visited Mexico City; she went around to find out my new phone number, insisted that we meet and talk in a restaurant. As a mature man, I was determined to tell Angelica that many people who, as a lad, I had taken for friends hadn’t really been friends. I alluded to the case of Tere, her former neighbour, and tried to present my arguments along the same lines to what was written in previous pages. Remember that a few years before I had sent her some drafts similar to the ones I publish in this book: texts about what I have felt about the country in which I was born. In July 2004, just a few days after we last saw each other at the restaurant, Angelica sent me an email:

Hi Caesar:

I read your book again. It’s okay. I think some things seemed too racist to me, for example your comments about your country. Your work loses value by your stupid racism: nacos, etc.

In Mexico naco designates the clumsy and uneducated Indian who emigrates to the city. If Angelica hadn’t been indoctrinated in a Marxist-Leninist university, she wouldn’t have been offended. She is a white woman who had a very handsome son, and at that time she was living with another much smaller son whose absent father was European.

You who seek to be treated as a human being don’t treat others as what you ask. It really gave me deep sadness to see you so aggressive and deteriorated.

I don’t think I told you the end of the dream. I was crying and that’s how it was. When I went on the subway, I became depressed and I broke down crying. Believe me, I esteem you more than I imagined. I really wanted to see you and hug you but your mask prevented me. Hopefully you can read this email.

A hug,

Angelica.

I didn’t answer her. The restaurant meeting had been forced, and it will surely be the last time I see her. But I would like to say something about the mask she mentioned. Angelica had had a dream, one of those that portray a situation. She had dreamt of myself as cold and distant, with a black mask; and in the dream she saw a woman who seemed responsible for all that; whom, within the same dream, Angelica related to my mother. In real life I was cold to her at the restaurant, and that was in dramatic contrast to the friendly lad Angelica had met in her apartment almost twenty years earlier. I wore a black mask in the dream and in real life I was dressed in black on my appointment with her (she was all dressed in flashy red).

Regarding her comment that she highly esteem me, I’ve also heard it from people I don’t want to see. Like Tere and Angelica, many hypocrites say they esteem me. But very few say anything meaningful to me when I open my heart to them by placing a homemade impression of the Letter in their hands: the core of my pain and the key that opens the door to my later life. Although Angelica is a professor of psychology, she didn’t show any compassion for what I told in that epistle. And from the other texts she read, it didn’t occur to her that if my father had agreed to emigrate I’d never have written a derogatory line about Mexico, although I’d have written about the United States. In her mind my cry of loneliness before a culture that is no longer mine appeared as ‘stupid racism’ (in my eleventh book in Spanish and Daybreak in English I address the issue of the word ‘racism’). More serious is that the psychology teacher had less compassion than Tere. The latter at least told me she was devastated; that only when she had the strength would she resume reading my Letter, and that at one point her eyes clouded when she read me. The professional psychologist didn’t even have that hint of pity.

It is worth saying that in 1985 Angelica had yelled at me horribly during an argument in which she agreed with my mother. And it was my mother with whom Angelica was talking about me that year! (although, unlike Tere, Angelica did it over the phone). The psychologist interpreted my belated resentment as if I was ‘aggressive and deteriorated’. Ironically, she saw me like this when I was enormously robust compared to the twenty-something lad of yesteryear. People get used to the docility of people damaged by their parents and with low self-esteem, and a change for the better is seen as a bad thing. I have only been ‘deteriorated’, to use Angelica’s word, when due to lack of a knowledgeable witness I couldn’t confront older women (Angelica and Tere are older than me).

Many years ago I witnessed how Angelica scolded her three-year-old blondish son with the threat: ‘I’m going to cut your balls!’ Betito, the European’s son, began to cry. Angelica and Tere say they esteem me. The truth is that there are many people who, like them, lack empathy for the feelings of others. What they estimate is not the real person, only a facet or one-dimensional image that they have of the person. Whoever is lucky enough to have a friendly ear, someone with whom to communicate the dimensions of the soul, knows that trying to transmit the secrets of the heart to a fellow without empathy is like speaking to Golem. Lack of empathy always has the same cause. The last time I saw her, Tere told me a creepy story perpetrated by her grandfather with his children. Once one of his sons was twelve years old, he took him to another city to abandon him. Tere’s grandpa told him that from that day on he had to subsist on his own. He didn’t even take him with a relative or acquaintances. He left him on the Mexican streets and never saw him again in life.

Tere and Angelica were, like the trio in the Cineteca gathering, victims of mistreatment. And not only that. Like those of the Cineteca they have buried the feelings of anger towards their parents. Ironically, the repression was greater in the psychology teacher than in Tere, who at least told me the story of her grandfather, or the filmmakers, who also spoke about their past. The more terrible the abuse of the parent and the greater the repression, the less empathy the daughter will develop towards her son (we can already imagine the toll that constant threats of castration can cause in a little boy of three years).

 
The analysts

There will be those who, after reading the above story, will think that there are not the psychologists, but the psychoanalysts the experts in deep psychology: professionals who take an interest in the lives of their clients, especially in the terrors of their childhood. This is a myth. I won’t repeat the exposé from my previous book on psychoanalysis because no one currently believes in its cornerstone. Freud said that his ideological edifice rested on his discovery of the Oedipus complex: that parents turn out to be a source of sexual desires for the child. It takes being too stupid, or seeing Freud as an infallible guru, to believe such a thing.

For many years Alice Miller practiced her profession as a psychoanalyst in Switzerland. In her first three books, Das Drama des begabten Kindes (The Drama of the Gifted Child), Am Anfang war Erziehung (translated as For Your Own Good) and Du Sollst Nicht Merken (Thou Shalt Not Be Aware) Miller believed that her discoveries were not incompatible with psychoanalysis. But in the late 1980s and early 90s she openly broke with her profession with the publication of Der gemiedene Schlüssel (The Untouched Key), Das verbannte Wissen (Banished Knowledge) and Abbruch der Schweigemauer (Breaking Down the Wall of Silence).

People like Miller, Jeffrey Masson, and others have found that an analyst is someone trained not to listen to his client. Before I became familiar with her thinking, which helped me distance myself even more from psychoanalysts, I used to hang out with a couple of young Lacanian analysts: Solbein and Hector Escobar. The same year that I gave copies of my manuscript to Tere and Angelica I gave another to the Escobars. Hector, who had studied psychology, loved it and devoured it in a day and a half. In a cafe he talked about my literary skills—as I said, something that irritates me to be told—and also spoke as a psychoanalyst: ‘The problem arose with that self that your mother deconstructed’. Hector was very cordial and warm, but his analytic term (‘deconstructed’) was cold and far from what my pages actually screamed (compare it with my metaphor ‘a dagger in the heart’). Solbein also liked my book and it was she who, when I sat with them in the cafe, brought up on the table the subject of the manuscript I had given them. But Solbein uttered an icy comment: she said she didn’t notice many differences with the cases she saw in her office. It was as if someone were simply telling a Gulag survivor that his story was not dissimilar to other zek stories! The way she concluded her comment was horrifyingly dry:

‘Those are common clinical experiences’.

The analyst’s words remind me neither more nor less of the infamous Dr. Amara when he read the epistle to my mother. Faced with Amara’s evasiveness in his office, I asked him: ‘But what do you think of what I say, that the cause of my problem was my mother?’ In my previous book I tell that Amara answered: ‘It’s myopia’ and that he explained that neuroses exist in every family, and that mine was just one more neurotic family. In addition to this incredible similarity, Solbein told me that the analytic thesis she was writing referred to mystical stages in people who had had absent parents. I wrote in my diary that I was surprised that she wasn’t moved by the tragedy of the physical torture my parents inflicted on me: getting out of bed every day after sleeping for only a few hours, something that has nothing to do with ‘an absent father’. Referring to their comments, in my diary I noted that these Lacanians ‘don’t touch the people, nor the Subject they talk about so much, but they invalidate him by speaking objectively about him’. Although Hector was much warmer, he listened to his wife without realising how terrible terms such as ‘clinic’ sound to those who seek consolation: a word that Angelica had also used in one of her letters. For an autobiographer immersed in the humanities, the repulsiveness of language in psychology and psychoanalysis is discovered in the following anecdote.

At the time when I gave my manuscript to the Escobars I used to eat at a restaurant in downtown Coyoacán in Mexico City, an extremely populous place. For the hermit, few things are more execrable than the crowd, the street vendors and the noise. As I didn’t have a kitchen in my home, I suffered greatly from having to fight my way through the human swarming every day when I went to eat. But, oh miracle, when I met the Escobars in that place I knew that the sacrifice of having gone there for weeks had been worth it. Out of dignity I hadn’t spoken to them on the phone to ask what they thought of my text. I hoped the initiative would come from them. But just like the day I ate with Tere in Coyoacán, my heart burned to know what the young analysts would say about my life. The daily and painstakingly crossing that crowd of Neanderthals, I told myself, was worth it to find them! (incidentally, in those days they both looked like Iberian-type whites). And it is that in my imagery prior to the meeting in the cafe I imagined a compassionate and understanding Solbein who explained to me, with her knowledge, my written confessions. But when in real life I came to what I thought would be an oasis of understanding, I found only sand. The intimate manuscript on the great odyssey of my life simply describes ‘common clinical experiences’.

‘Introjection’

I have used the word ‘introject ’ (see e.g., here) and would like to explain it using a little isolated piece of my biography, as when writing a profound autobiography I had to come across this word.

In common dictionaries introjection is ‘the unconscious adaptation of the ideas or attitudes of others’. But I emphasise the adoption of the ideas that our parents instilled in us, as it was they who had the greatest influence on our tender egos.

Several commenters, both here and outside this site, have scoffed at my past ideological deviations: completely ignorant of what I intended to tell them about. I confessed that to illustrate how we are slaves to parental introjects, for example, why some anti-Semites continue to kneel before the Jewish god.

Although decontextualised, the following passage from The Grail illustrates how it was that I introjected some religious things that my father told me. It was like a tremendous malware that I couldn’t erase until after a long time. The following passage is just a loose piece of the puzzle that my eleven books put together, but it helps to understand the word introjection when it leaves my lips. On pages 231-235 of The Grail I wrote the following (my Spanish-English translation, with some explanatory brackets):

 

______ 卐 ______

 

The Shroud of Turin

Imagine my surprise when, flipping through a book on the so-called Shroud during a subsequent stay in the neighbouring northern country (this time in Houston, Texas), I found some pages where the authors spoke of a writing of mine whose theories I had already abandoned:

Some see the origin of the image on the Shroud as paranormal, rather than miraculous. They suggest that supernatural, rather than Divine, forces may be at work. Mexican parapsychologist Cesar Tort has raised the possibility that the image is a ‘thoughtograph’ . There is evidence – controversial, but not easily dismissed – that some psychics can create recognizable images on film by the power of thought alone. The most famous case is that of Ted Serios, an alcoholic Chicago bellhop, whose abilities were studied intensively in the mid-196os by the eminent researcher Jule Eisenbud. If it exists, the ability of the mind to affect the highly sensitive chemicals of photographic film would seem to be a natural variant of psychokinesis (PK)—the alteration of the state of a physical object by mental influence alone—as exhibited most famously by Uri Geller.

Tort [1] points to a similar phenomenon, that of images appearing spontaneously on the walls and floors of buildings. He cites a well­ documented case from the 1920s, when the image of the late Dean John Liddell appeared on a wall of Oxford Cathedral. Such pictures are usually of people of special sanctity, but not always. In one case in Belmez de la Moraleda in Spain, which was investigated by the veteran parapsychologist Professor Hans Bender one-time mentor of Elmar Gruber, co-author of The Jesus Conspiracy, leering, demonic faces have appeared regularly on the walls and floors of a house for more than twenty years. [2]

Cesar Tort’s starting point was the paradox between the historical and scientific evidence that we had already noted: the image on the Shroud is more consistent with actual crucifixion (and so, to most people, with the first century), than with a medieval artistic forgery, but the carbon dating and the documented history show it to be medieval. How, asked Tort, could a fourteenth-century cloth show a first-century image? So he speculated that it was a thoughtograph, projected onto the cloth by the collective minds of the pilgrims who came to meditate on a (then plain) cloth that they believed had wrapped their risen Lord. Tort admitted the main objection to this scenario: even suspending disbelief about the reality of thoughtography, we would expect the image to conform to the beliefs and expectations of those who unconsciously created it. To a medieval mind, there should be nails in the palms (not the wrists), Jesus should look younger, and he would certainly not be naked as here. To explain this, Tort has to invoke another paranormal phenomenon—retrocognition—where the past can be psychically perceived.

The pros and cons of these phenomena are outside the scope of this book, but in the case of Tort’s hypothesis it is enough to say that neither effect has ever been reported as working on the scale needed to make the Shroud image, and that the use of two such unknowns—thoughtograph y and retrocognition—is simply stretching credulity far too far. Neither does it explain why a negative image was projected, or why the bloodstains should be so different from the rest of the image. It is a bold and open-minded attempt to reconcile the contradictory elements of the Shroud, but in the end it creates more questions than answers.

The passage appears on pages 45-46 of Turin Shroud: In Whose Image? by Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince. The authors mention my name again on pages 48 and 57-58. Despite having cited an enormous number of bibliographic references, I never imagined that what I had written in the JSPR could appear in a hardcover book whose first edition was sold in the United States.

In an Octavio Paz book I read that what is written for money has no artistic value. If I had become a commercial writer, I would have written, in addition to My Agony in California, books such as In Search of the Soulmate and My Quixotic Misadventures in a Cult. Eventually my editor, avid for bestsellers out of the pens of tortured souls, would have asked me to write My Misadventures with the Shroud. But those books would no longer be the cream of the cream. However, although I could fill a book on my misadventures with the Shroud, which I will not write, I also cannot completely overlook that stage of my life.

It all started in 1986, on a gloomy night in the Loch Lomond harbour for private boats in San Rafael, California, times when I wrote desperate letters to Octavio [my cousin]. In wanting to save me [from the introjected fear of hell], I had to demonstrate that the mysterious image of the shroud had been a mere paranormal phenomenon (did others also leave imprints on mortuary sheets?), not the resurrection as Christians understand it. In my Whispering Leaves I mentioned that that year John Heaney answered a letter that I had mailed to him. But I omitted that the theologian referred to a Scott Rogo book on miracles, stressing that this parapsychologist had speculated analogously to what I had asked Heaney. I had also commented to the theologian, in a sentence that I wrote to him that verbatim still reaches me today: ‘Because of the fear of eternal damnation, I have been in spiritual agony’.

Opening Scott Rogo’s book in the blackness of Loch Lomond [I had a night shift] I was greatly surprised by a hypothesis that had not crossed my mind. That book, Miracles, was the starting point that resulted in an obsession in which I gradually acquired several books and scientific documents on the shroud.

Back in Mexico, I spent two years, full-time work, on the subject; and I got to publish my theories in the journal that Picknett and Prince read in the quote above. In 1991 I would even visit John Beloff in Edinburgh, the editor of that journal for psychical researchers. By the way, the previous year I had rushed into publishing my article, which Picknett and Prince summarised so well above. It was plagued by typographer’s misprints for having asked Karen Deters, my syntax editor, to speak to Beloff for publication in January of 1990, rather than the editor’s wise advice to leave it for April. Deters tried to contact Beloff [there was no internet] but Beloff was not in his cubicle when she called Scotland on the phone. The director of the Department of Psychology at the University of Edinburgh answered the call, who conveyed my hasty wish to Beloff. So I was responsible for the horrible misprints.

More than three decades have passed since my misadventures began with the most sacred relic of the Catholic Church. I currently have a web page on the shroud that reproduces a few texts (The medieval Turin Shroud: A non-paranormal approach to the puzzling image). To write one of the entries on that site I had to find, from my archived files, an old half-blurred photocopy of Walter McCrone’s article in Scientific American. The brief article referred to the turning point of October 1988: the month in which the results of the radiocarbon tests dated the relic from 1260 to 1380 C.E. Capturing McCrone’s text for my shroud website came as a revelation.

But before I confess it, I must say that, at the time when I was writing for Beloff’s journal, I paid no much attention to what the Skeptical Inquirer had published in the spring issue of 1982, which contained an article by Marvin Mueller. I had requested that number and Joe Nickell’s sceptical book on the shroud, but still believed that the image was paranormal.

When I quoted McCrone’s words in 2018, the question came to me how it was that, with such good information, thirty years before I had not woken up. I concluded, in one of my diaries, that it had all been a tremendous introject from my father. Years before my internal struggles in Loch Lomond, it had been my father who had captivated me with his tales about the Shroud! He had taken that information out of books he bought, although they have been lost and are no longer in the family library. ‘And that was more important than everything posted on my new blog about the shroud’, says my diary. ‘You can imagine’, I said to myself, ‘the toll that the shroud of Turin would have caused in my mind if my father had been an agnostic regarding religion, like his brother Alejandro who still lives’. In the 1990s uncle Alejandro had told me, in front of dad and alluding to McCrone, that the image on the sheet was iron oxide—as if making fun of my JSPR article, which he had read.

On my shroud site I confess that I am indebted to the late nuclear physicist Marvin Mueller for having had the patience to answer my letters. Mueller’s long missives, which would gradually disillusion me about the claim that the image was mysterious, can be seen on my mentioned shroud website.

____________

[1] Tort, César J. (1990) ‘The Turin Shroud: A Case of Retrocognitive Thoughtography?’, Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, Vol. 56, Nº 818, pages 71-81.

[2] (The previous footnote appears in the book by the English authors.) I investigated this case on my visit to Bélmez in Andalusia, Spain, in 1992. After another credulous article of mine in the journal of the previous note, I became convinced of the fraud. See my short 1995 article, ‘Bélmez Faces turned out to be suspiciously picture-like images’ in Skeptical Inquirer, 19 (2) (Mar/Apr), page 4. I personally submitted the manuscript of this article to the editor of the magazine, Kendrick Frazier, during the CSICOP conference in Seattle in 1994, where I had the pleasure of shaking hands with Carl Sagan, who gave the keynote address.