Occulture
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Occulture : The Unseen Forces That Drive Culture Forward

3.86 (36 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Explores the role of magic and the occult in art and culture from ancient times to today

* Examines key figures behind esoteric cultural developments, such as Carl Jung, Anton LaVey, Paul Bowles, Aleister Crowley, and Rudolf Steiner

* Explores the history of magic as a source of genuine counter culture and compares it with our contemporary soulless, digital monoculture

Art, magic, and the occult have been intimately linked since our prehistoric ancestors created the first cave paintings some 50,000 years ago.

In this deep exploration of "occulture"--the liminal space where art and magic meet--Carl Abrahamsson reveals the integral role played by magic and occultism in the development of culture throughout history as well as their relevance to the continuing survival of art and creativity. Blending magical history and esoteric philosophy with his more than 30 years' experience in occult movements,

Showing how art and magic were initially one and the same, the author reveals how the magic of art can be restored if art is employed as a means rather than an end--if it is intense, emotional, violent, and expressive--and offers strategies for creating freely, magically, even spontaneously, with intent unfettered by the whims of trends, a creative practice akin to chaos magick that assists both creators and spectators to live with meaning. He also looks at intuition and creativity as the cornerstones of genuine individuation, explaining how insights and illuminations seldom come in collective forms.

Exploring magical philosophy, occult history, the arts, psychology, and the colorful grey areas in between, Abrahamsson reveals the culturally and magically transformative role of art and the ways the occult continues to transform culture to this day.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 20mm | 408g
  • Park Street Press,U.S.
  • Rochester, United States
  • English
  • 1620557037
  • 9781620557037
  • 546,453

Table of contents

Foreword by Gary Lachman

1 Contra Contra Means Pro

2 Splendor Solis
Lebensreform and Sexual Vitalism in Germany

3 Abstraction Made Concrete
The Occultural Methods and Mutations of Thee Temple Ov Psychick Youth

4 Over the Moon and Back Again

5 Pokemon Go Away

6 What Remains for the Future?
An Initial Attempt at a Comparison between Aleister Crowley and Rudolf Steiner

7 Paul Bowles
Expat Magic

8 Tangible Evanescence

9 Anton LaVey, Magical Innovator

10 Carl Jung, Mythmaker

11 The Imaginative Libido

12 Formulating the Desired
Some Similarities between Ritual Magic and the Psychoanalytic Process

13 Zine und Zeit

14 The Mega Golem Is Alive and Well

15 Sexual-Dynamic Polarity as a Magical Formula
Aleister Crowley's Views on Gender and Transcendence

16 The Economy of Magic
There's No Free Lunch or Free Magical Success

17 The Magic of Dreams Made Real

18 Collective Mysticism
It's Probably a Myth

19 Challenging Inertia and Entropy

20 Memes or Schemes

21 Intuition as a State of Grace

Acknowledgments

Notes

Bibliography

Index
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Review quote

"Although dealing with some deep matters - occultism, art, philosophy - that are often the object of pretentious or bombastic writing, Occulture is pleasingly free of either. Despite the breadth of his knowledge and experience, Abrahamsson never talks high-handedly to his readers, delivering his thoughts and arguments clearly. There's much in the book for readers with every level of knowledge of the subjects discussed - although it does assume a familiarity with, for example, the ideas of Crowley, LaVey and Jung - and much to reflect upon. * Clive Prince, Magonia Review of Books * "A welcome collection of insightful essays on the acculturation of society from the veteran chronicler of countercultures." * Hymenaeus Beta, Frater Superior of O.T.O., musician, and occultist * "Through this collection of articles, essays, talks, and miscellanea, Carl Abrahamsson emerges as a dedicated communicator who shares concepts, histories, and ideas with insight and imagination. Whether exploring the culture of Thee Temple ov Psychick Youth or the philosophies of Crowley, Steiner, Jung, and Paul Bowles, Abrahamsson's work is never less than engaging." * Jack Sargeant, author of Flesh and Excess, Naked Lens, and Against Control * "Carl Abrahamsson--that curator and champion of everything in occulture that is cool, edgy, trendy, and artsy--inspires us with this mind-expanding collection of essays: meditations on art, magick, sex, psyche, and society that collectively trace the supernatural's proclivity to cross over from counterculture to mainstream, casting light on how we see and understand our world. Not to be missed!" * Richard Kaczynski, author of Perdurabo: The Life of Aleister Crowley * "Carl Abrahamson's Occulture is itself a beautiful example of the phenomena it discusses. Erudite and a pleasure to read, the collected essays have the potential to nudge consciousness beyond the ordinary perspective of culture and history. A necessary read for students of culture or magick." * Philip H. Farber, author of Brain Magick, Meta-Magick, and FutureRitual * "A sharp, frank, and level-headed exploration of some of the most important figures and movements on the current edges of occultism. Highly recommended." * Richard Smoley, author of Forbidden Faith: The Secret History of Gnosticism * "These days, too much occult discourse comes off as grandiose, needlessly arcane, or desperately darker-than-thou. But decades of participant observation on the art-magic-transgression beat have given Carl Abrahamsson a more down-to-earth approach. Streamlining Crowley, LaVey, and postpunk chaos magic, these talks and essays offer up accessible, pragmatic, and psychologically savvy takes on the intuitive potentials of creative individuation. This is not another `system' but sparkplugs engineered for your own magical engine." * Erik Davis, author of Nomad Codes and host of Expanding Mind podcast * "Occulture is a word that was inevitable. During the hyperactive phase of Thee Temple Ov Psychick Youth in the 1980s we were casting around for an all-embracing term to describe an approach to combining a unique, demystified, spiritual philosophy with a fervent insistence that all life and art are indivisible. At any given moment our sensory environment is whispering to us, telling us hidden stories, revealing subliminal connections. This concealed dialogue between every level of popular cultural forms and magical conclusions is what we named `occulture.' Carl Abrahamsson takes this rendering of an innate cultural dynamic and exposes a multitude of parallel creative Universes that do that thing. So easy to perceive with hindsight but so invisible to the closed mind, he changes our means of perception--turning a straight line into an intricate spider's web of possibilities and impossibilities combined. He performs magick; he concretizes meaning and brings forth revelation into his carefully focused vision." * Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, English singer-songwriter, musician, and poet * "Occulture is one of today's most learned, unexpected, and illuminating tours through occult cultural influences. Carl Abrahamsson will expand your doors of perception of what the counterculture really is. His chapter on Anton LaVey came to me as a revelation. I am filled with hope that a book like this can be published at a time like ours." * Mitch Horowitz, PEN Award-winning author of Occult America and One Simple Idea *
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About Carl Abrahamsson

Carl Abrahamsson is a writer, publisher, magico-anthropologist, filmmaker, and photographer. Since the mid-1980s he has been active in the magical community, integrating "occulture" as a way of life and lecturing about his findings and speculations. The editor and publisher of the annual anthology of occulture, The Fenris Wolf, and the author of Reasonances, he divides his time between Stockholm, Sweden, and New York City.
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Rating details

36 ratings
3.86 out of 5 stars
5 36% (13)
4 22% (8)
3 33% (12)
2 8% (3)
1 0% (0)
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