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Why Are We Sleeping?

6 Feb

gurdjieff-feature-enneagram

“Man is immersed in dreams… He lives in sleep… He is a machine. He cannot stop the flow of his thoughts, he cannot control his imagination, his emotions, his attention… He does not see the real world. The real world is hidden from him by the wall of imagination.”

I’ve written an overview of Georges Gurdjieff’s ideas and influence – you can read it here

 

Mirage Men Trailer #2

25 Jun

 

Mirage Men film is here!

15 May

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After eight long years the Mirage Men film is finally finished, and I’m thrilled to say that the initial response has been overwhelmingly positive.

The film has been enthusiastically accepted for the Sheffield Doc/Fest 2013 where it will receive its world premiere.

Screenings take place on 13 June and 15 June – both will feature Q&As with the crew and other guests.
There’s more information at the Doc/Fest site

You can follow the film’s progress at miragemen.com

Mirage Men Brooklyn!

1 Nov


This Sunday, 11 November, at 2pm, I’ll be presenting my talk ‘
The Abuses of Enchantment‘ for my old fortean friends the Ullage Group, at the Jalopy Theatre in Red Hook, Brooklyn. I’ll also be discussing Mirage Men and will show a few clips from the film…

All proceeds will go to the Jalopy’s relief fund for the area, which was hit very hard by hurricane Sandy last week, so please come if you can.

The Abuses of Enchantment:
How military and intelligence operators have shaped and exploited beliefs in UFOs, ghosts, monsters, vampires, and elements from folklore and conspiracy theory to create an armory of supernatural weapons of mass deception, capable of manipulating consciousness on a grand scale. The talk traces the inspiration for these toys, tools and techniques to a range of sources which include fiction, cinema, stage magic, advertising and occultism, and uncovers the ways in which they have–for many of its intended and unintended targets–altered their very perception and understanding of the world around us.

2 pm, Sunday 11 Nov 2012
The Jalopy Theater,
315 Columbia St., Brooklyn.
$10

Ullage announce that ‘departing from our usual practice, we will charge $10; we’ll turn it over to Jalopy for their hurricane relief fund.’

The art and science of ghosts

15 Oct

The wonderful folks at Boing Boing asked me to explain to our friends overseas what all our ‘hauntology’ business is about – apparently it’s ‘catching on’ in the USA.

Rather than a comprehensive guide, which would fill an encyclopedia, I prepared a very partial ghost train ride of connected themes, artifacts and people ranging from MR James to Are You Being Served?

I think it works quite well, the more so for having something of a timeless feel itself: bar one or two references it could have been written any time in the past six years!

As an aside, in discussing the material with American friends, it becomes clear that they didn’t really have a comparable vein of culture, i.e. one that was designed to scare the crap out of kids. More generally of course the nostalgia industry is booming on both sides of the pond via the endless stream of Hollywood remakes and clones, the ‘hypnagogic pop’ movement, retro gaming etc, but really I think that’s just a perpetuation of a state of affairs that’s been with us for decades. Hauntology is… something else.

Anyway, here’s the piece: Hauntologists mine the past for music’s future

These New Pagans

20 Jun

I’ve written a historical overview of the predominant neo-pagan tribes, illustrated with several examples of the their music, from folk to freakouts, for the Redbull Music Academy.

Mirage Men film trailer

10 Apr

 

Here’s the first trailer for  Mirage Men the Motion Picture, created by mine and John Lundberg’s new partners on the project, Roland Denning and Kypros Kyprianou.

Huge thanks are due to both of them for their amazing work.The music extracts are by Earth (‘Mirage’ from Hex or Printing in the Infernal Method) and Cyclobe (‘You’re not alone, you’re dreaming’ from Luminous Darkness), and are used with permission.

Thanks to Roland and Kyp, the film is well on its way to completion now, and we’ll have more news, clips and information about preview screenings over the coming months.

 

Saucer Country

19 Mar


Saucer Country
is a new comic book series written by Paul Cornell, drawn by Ryan Kelly and published by Vertigo.

SAUCER COUNTRY is a dark thriller that blends UFO lore and alien abduction with political intrigue, all set in the hauntingly beautiful Southwest.

The first issue has already been getting rave reviews in the comic press and the series looks set to be a sophisticated and enjoyable take on the UFO lore. With so much rich material to play with, this could really be a fun, wild ride. Writes Cornell:

To know a country, know its mythology. And this is the only modern American mythology.

I’ve also been thrilled to spot this on Paul’s blog:

I should also take this opportunity to once again thank Mark Pilkington, whose fantastic book Mirage Men is one of the few sane works about UFO mythology. Mark is one of the major influences on Saucer Country.

Shucks! I’ll hope to have a cameo appearance in a future issue!

 

The Abuses of Enchantment

16 Mar

 

Here’s a video of a presentation I gave at Dr David Luke’s ‘Ecology, Cosmos and Consciousness’ lecture series at London’s October Gallery in February 2011.  The talk incorporates and expands upon some of the ideas outlined in my book Mirage Men.

 In this audio-visual presentation Mark shows how military and intelligence operators have shaped and exploited beliefs in UFOs, ghosts, monsters, vampires, and elements from folklore and conspiracy theory to create an armoury of supernatural weapons of mass deception capable of manipulating consciousness on a grand scale. The inspiration for these toys, tools and techniques has come from a range of sources including fiction, cinema, stage magic, advertising and occultism and has, for many of its intended and unintended targets, altered their very perception and understanding of the world around us.
 

David is putting together an anthology based around this long-running series, to be published in the near future by Strange Attractor Press.

[Video by Gyrus]