John Dee was the 16th century's real-life Gandalf

#1

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#2

Ah, yes. The ol’ Sloop John Dee.

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#3

Whoever wrote that needs a geography refresher, as Canada does not start at the 50th parallel. I’m sitting here typing this at 43.1 degrees latitude, and it’s been Canada here since the 1700’s.

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#4

That was the worst trip I’ve ever been on.

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#5

Are you sure you’re not in North Korea? That starts at the 50th parallel too, you know.

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#6

I dunno about that last bit. Some of the early Enlightenment scientists were also interested in the supernatural, but certainly not all of them. In any case, it’s unlikely that summoning spirits would have made Newton a better physicist. Likewise, the connection between alchemy and chemistry is, I think, real but exaggerated.

Also, the Enlightenment wasn’t only about science. Not even mostly. And as for Dee single-handedly causing the Enlightenment, I have to say [citation needed].

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#7

This is an extremely favorable view of Dee. I won’t say it’s absolutely beyond the pale of history, but in giving the impression that the endeavor he spent most of his life on, spirit-summoning, had some basis in reality, it does a disservice to the actual scientists of the period. Newton, for example, may have wasted years on alchemy, but unlike Dee he made major world-changing discoveries and all but defined the image of science in Elizabethan times. Dee in contrast may have been intelligent and well read, with a wonderful private library, but if you subtracted him from history only occult scholars would notice.

Also it’s amazing how many people seem to be responsible for the invention of the espionage network, all at the same time in Elizabeth’s court. There are more claimants for this honor than for the authoring of Shakespeare’s plays…

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#8

The story of Dee’s life is a good reminder, for anyone who values sense and sanity, of the problems and pitfalls inherent in mixing religion and science. Science is objective, and scientific findings can be expressed in solid figures that can be verified by others. Religion is subjective, and what it shows depends on the individual’s mind set.

#9

Well, he slayed the Balrog. None shall pass, etc…

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#10

So they were basically cats…

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#11

Why are you using the conditional? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isaac_Newton's_occult_studies

(Yes, I realize he wasn’t summoning spirits specifically, but he was definitely studying various fields now considered occult)

#12

Fifty-four Forty or Fight!

#13

Interesting write up. If it was anyone other than “Ultraculture” Jason, I might consider buying it. Since it is him, it is a write off.

Remember that whole “people who practice Voudou are evil” thing, Jason? Yeah, folks still remember implicit racism.

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#14

Interesting, I had never before read of these aspects of his life, that is on his alleged “angelic” dealings, but normally have just run across cursory descriptions of the man, or fictional references as a plot point in some wider reaching story.

Maybe I just forgot.

The abstract construct model for science fiction and fantasy fare goes something like this: a very, very long time, in a place very far away there evolved human beings just like us. Over billions of years of evolution they overcame their own transitory body and became immortal spirits who can as if control reality as a well trained and experienced lucid dreamer can control the aspects of their own dreams.

Queue Dark City, perhaps.

Maybe the Thirteenth Floor.

Not being either human male nor human female, their gender would be irrelevant. Even everyday people have the capacity to perceive - somehow - the “who a person is” under the flesh. Who they are on the outside is entirely irrelevant if their “gender” is entirely alien to either human male or human female.

Technological mind blowing feats such as modern cgi or video games with expansive virtual worlds would be so deeply archaic technology, it would hardly be possible of mentioning seriously. And in fact, they may have introduced it early to help people evolve faster.

Human morality would be incomprehensibly archaic.

Human knowledge, even its’ greatest, would be incomprehensibly archaic.

We humans are impressed, however, by the activities of lower life forms. They can be amusing to watch. Though much lower then we are in consciousness, we can learn much about our own selves by studying them. And if the future was entirely open to us to create as we will with but a process of structured thinking, then it might be wise to consider the much simpler problems humankind faces. Present it with a variety of tests, and learn even more about the nature of good and evil.

Not true, but an interesting thought exercise that might have some remote bearing on some vastly alien matters that might be true.

#15

[quote=“Boundegar”]Also, the Enlightenment wasn’t only about science. Not even mostly. And as for Dee single-handedly causing the Enlightenment, I have to say [citation needed].
[/quote]

I doubt you’ll get one. The author seems to believe that “Enochian” has “its own grammar and syntax”—a statement that no one who went and checked for scholarly references would have made, since the consensus of most professional linguists who’ve studied it is that the syntax is virtually identical to Early Modern English. (Which is often what happens when you’re attempting to pass off something as a new language.)

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#16

“Religion” is a catch all phrase that so often is used for so many different things the meaning frequently blurs to meaninglessness.

If one is meaning that all “science” or more aptly scientific standards and methods should be used for is that which is already known and that which is already found to be popularly approved by scientific methods then no advance would ever happen.

Expectations of the observer have been shown to effect scientific experiments at the quantum level, however, so subjectivity is a danger in many areas of possible exploration. For instance, to some degree subjective mores of one’s cultural background will invariably limit their capacity for understanding anything new. In order to understand it they must relate it back to that which they have experienced before. If it is new discovery which involves a complex and entirely alien framework, understanding will invariably be flawed regardless of the instruments used.

Otherwise, some consideration of highly subjective environments where scientific processes could be employed, but as yet, I have not seen this: lucid dreaming & the capacities for the human mind under hypnosis. There has been scientific work, some, on both areas, of course, but both areas remain largely explored. But, a reminder, besides of the interesting possibilities of either area… both contexts are environments being created by one’s mind and entirely subjective. Expectations directly effect results.

Both areas have very strong evidence of their existence and some profound capabilities, but both areas remain draped in mystery. Even just with sleep, we do not know very much. Much less much about dreaming or hypnosis.

Both areas are immaterial areas, as well.

To some degree, there have been minor plunges in these areas. Some likely limitations have been found. I have found some of these findings contradictory to work one of the main leaders of modern hypnotherapy have found (eg, Milton Erickson), others correct. Good Mythbusters on the subject, though that does not even begin to touch the surface of the sorts of things found in more advanced situations.

I might emphasis here: not entirely unlike lie detecting, expectations of the “subject” are critical in these scenarios. In hypnosis, which usually involves the subject and the hypnotist, the expectations of not just the subject are critical, but also the hypnotist. People’s capacity to somehow gauge “confidence” is directly related to results seen.

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#17

Dearest Al, I am so glad to see you are still obsessed with me after all these years!

Please take your slanderous and tiresome defamation crusade up with:

While these horror stories may represent “some but not all” cases of voodoo, you can imagine my reticence to tell a small mailing list of post-adolescent Wiccans and trippers “hey, voodoo is great, have at it kids, don’t mind the human trafficking!” back in 2007, particularly after I had just had my own absolutely awful personal experiences with it. Of course, the so-called “occult community” has NEVER engaged with the actual, real, serious human suffering and instead has dodged the issue and covered for themselves by simply labeling me a “racist” when the issues have nothing to do with race. This would be akin to calling somebody who calls out sexual abuse in the Catholic church, for instance, a “religious bigot” and simply leaving it at that.

If these reports of sorrowful and heart-breaking child exploitation and predation are “racist,” and you would like to defend the perpetrators from one itty bitty journalist, please contact the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child and hash it out with them. Let me know how that goes!

tl;dr Don’t make me go Rust Cohle on you, motherf***er.

Yours in the Work,
Jason

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#18

I’m not obsessed. I simply comment when I see your name come up. It is good to see you’re doubling down on your hatred of non-white minority religions though.

Oh and it isn’t “slanderous” as I quote your own words (and it would be “libel” as it is in print). Feel free to have your lawyer contact me about my seven year old blog post of you being a douchebag.

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#19

"[…]either Kelley ran a decade-long confidence game on Dee, or they indeed made contact with “something.”

Stopped reading after this, obviously the information in the article cannot be trusted.

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#20

Great man - many great accomplishments.

Let’s not forget that he did the first English translation of Al Azif. (There are rumors about a Black Mirror as well…he had some ties with some Oyster Cult or another…)