EGREGORES: THE OCCULT ENTITIES THAT WATCH OVER HUMAN DESTINY
Mark Stavish | 160 pages | Inner Traditions | ISBN: 9781620555781 | (price not available)
I don’t usually review books of mysticism and New Age philosophy, but I make an exception where such books cross over into territory familiar to me, especially when they touch on either the Watcher angels from the Book of Enoch or H. P. Lovecraft. Occasionally, we find a book that mixes together both. Egregores: The Occult Entities That Watch Over Human Destiny (Inner Traditions, 2018) is one such book, and author Mark Stavish provides some confounding ideas about the relationship between Fallen Angels and the Cthulhu Mythos in a confusing book that is half book report and half New Age instruction manual. The book is due out in July, and this is an early review.
Yesterday Graham Hancock posted a link to a YouTube video of a lecture he gave at the Earth-Keeper Arklantis Event last fall in Little Rock, Arkansas. The lecture lasted more than two hours and presents mostly material we’ve already heard about his forthcoming book on American prehistory, the peopling of the Americas, and the possibility that a comet impacted North American populations during the Ice Age. But what interested me more was the tone of annoyance and almost anger Hancock seemed to adopt in speaking of a largely imaginary group of academics that he feels have held American history captive for decades
I would be remiss if I were to let this month go by without marking the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of the seminal work of the ancient astronaut theory, Erich von Däniken’s Chariots of the Gods?. The book was published in February 1968 as Memories of the Future, retailing for 16 marks, and it would soon become synonymous with the idea—long discussed in UFO and ancient mystery books—that space aliens came to Earth from the skies. While in Europe, readers quickly took to the book and it became a bestseller within months of its release, in the United States, the book did not become a byword for countercultural archaeology for a few years, starting when the National Enquirer serialized it in 1970 and even more so in 1973, when an NBC-TV adaptation of the book, lightly reedited from an Oscar-nominated European movie version, introduced von Däniken’s ideas to a mass audience, who went on to buy millions of copies of the book, which had been released in English translation in Britain in 1969 and America in 1970.
Yesterday afternoon I spoke with Nephilim theorist L. A. Marzulli and Biblical archaeologist and pastor Mondo Gonzales about their preliminary investigation into the elongated skulls of Paracas, Peru. In the course of the conversation, Marzulli apologized for calling me a weasel, and we had a friendly and civil discussion of some of the major issues surrounding the announcement of results of DNA testing and morphological analysis on a series of skulls from Peruvian museums. I also learned from Marzulli that Brien Foerster has been dismissed from the research team for sensationalizing the results and will not be part of future investigations.
IMPOSSIBLE TRUTHS: AMAZING EVIDENCE OF EXTRATERRESTRIAL CONTACT
Erich von Däniken | 208 pages | Watkins | 2018 | ISBN: 978-1-78678-083-6 | $24.95
For the second time this year, the godfather of the ancient astronaut theory has released a new book promising to be the latest and greatest sequel to his Chariots of the Gods, which turns fifty years old this very month and will be celebrated with sumptuous hardcover reissue in July from Berkley Books, a division of Penguin RandomHouse. I won’t lie. I’ve seen the book design for that edition, and from the cover design on down, it is simply beautiful—a gorgeous aesthetic carefully gilding a half-century-old turd. But that book is for another time. Instead, today I am looking at Impossible Truths, a book that was published last month but which I have not had the time to review due to the growing number of high profile releases in the fringe history category this winter—the most active publishing schedule in the field in years. Frankly, I blame the whole alt-right, “alternative facts” complex for making these books mainstream again. But more to the point: Two von Däniken books in two weeks is two too many.
Last Friday, Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicted more than a dozen Russians and Russian-linked interests, laying out a compelling and chilling analysis of how the Russian government sought to create discord in the United States through propaganda efforts to manipulate American public opinion about the 2016 presidential election, including efforts to inflame racial tensions. Officials including the assistant attorney general and the sitting national security advisor said that these indictments provided “incontrovertible proof” of Russian election meddling. Shortly after the school shooting in Florida, which occurred just two days before the indictments, thousands of Russian and Russian-linked social media accounts began spreading memes designed to inflame mostly conservative opinion about gun rights and gun control.
In lieu of a blog post today, I present my review of alt-right “intellectual” Jason Reza Jorjani’s Prometheus and Atlas, a book that, before his ouster from AltRight.com and retreat from public life, Jorjani had promoted as the intellectual foundations for the alt-right movement. I have covered aspects of the book on this blog because of Jorjani’s prominence among the white nationalist right, where he partnered with white nationalist leader Richard Spencer and delivered a speech a pro-Trump rally where fascist salutes were given. Recently, Jorjani joined a nonprofit dedicated to “Aryan cultural revolution” called Iranian (Persian) Renaissance, where he theorizes that Iran will deliver the “completion of human evolution” by reinstituting an “Aryan” shah.
I wrote this piece for the Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture last year. Its publication was delayed, but the journal has graciously made the review available for free. Now, whenever a student tries to find scholarly information about Jorjani, it will be my evaluation of him that they find. Below is the first paragraph. The remainder is available to read on the journal’s website.
Jason Reza Jorjani’s Prometheus and Atlas takes its title in imitation of Nietzsche’s division of tragedy into the Apollonian and Dionysian in Birth of Tragedy; however, while Nietzsche used his mythic references to link art to the divine, Jorjani has selected his Titanic title for a darker purpose, to link the human condition to those immortals victimized by the gods of Olympus. In myth, Prometheus is vivisected for giving fire to mankind, while Atlas must hold the heavens for rebelling against the Olympians. Jorjani wishes humankind to emulate the Titans’ stand against oppressive deities, but it is emblematic of the problematic nature of his scholarship that he conflates the Titan Atlas with the same-named son of Poseidon who was king of Atlantis (Plato, Criti. 114a), and then proceeds to build his framework atop that faulty identity, imagining the conflated Atlas as a ‘world-colonizing’ hero.
I wasn’t going to post anything today, but I feel it inappropriate to let this pass another day without acknowledging the outrageous and libelous lies that L. A. Marzulli made this weekend on the Third Phase Moon broadcast. The Nephilim theorist was outraged that I criticized the credentials of his all-star team of completely unqualified DNA researchers, which included a chiropractor and tour guide Brien Foerster. Here is Marzulli making several false statements about me, and mispronouncing my name at the same time. I will spell his pronunciation phonetically.
POWER PLACES AND THE MASTER BUILDERS OF ANTIQUITY
Frank Joseph | 320 pages | Bear & Company | 2018 | ISBN: 9781591433132 | $18.0
Dear God, there’s another one. It’s only been a couple of days since I reviewed Xaviant Haze’s Ancient Giants, and now we have an even worse entry in the canon of ancient mysteries books to contend with. This one is especially appropriate because it comes to us from the pen of Frank Joseph, formerly known as Frank Collin, the ex-head of the National Socialist White People’s Party and the National Socialist Party of America. In a month when a former American Nazi Party leader is running unopposed to secure the Republican nomination for an Illinois congressional seat (which he will likely lose since it is a heavily Democratic district), it just seems right to see what the other former Nazi leader in the public eye is up to. Yes, he is still promoting white interests, just more subtly.
L. A. Marzulli Says "Mysterious" Donors Gave $150,000 to Fund DNA Testing of Paracas Elongated Skulls
This past weekend the History Channel announced a spinoff series for The Curse of Oak Island, to be called The Curse of Civil War Gold. The new show, which follows the adventures of Oak Island bit players Kevin Dykstra and Gary Drayton as they search for Confederate gold at the bottom of Lake Michigan, is set to premiere in the plum slot following Oak Island’s March 6 season finale. The new series will feature Marty Lagina from Oak Island, whose day job is running a business based in the same area of Michigan where the hunt took place during filming in October. Civil War gold is not a subject of my interest or expertise, so I will consign this show to the dustbin of other treasure-hunting programs I have ignored over the past few years. However, I do want to note that the new show is from Oak Island and Ancient Aliens powerhouse producers Prometheus Entertainment, and, it is the fifth or sixth attempt from History to attempt to clone the success of Oak Island, its highest rated unscripted series.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Esquire, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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