Life continues at a pace typically only seen in the first twenty seconds of a commercial for headache tablets or flavoured tea. It would be frustrating if it wasn’t so lucrative (and channelled toward a loftier goal). Inevitably it means the wheels fall off everything else; blogging, fitness, other projects, spending time with the people I allegedly want to build a life with… and so on.
Sometimes I think about keeping the site updated with general life stuff but I worry that it comes across as absurd or showy. Like how Arya Stark walked past my meeting room seconds after joking how we’d have to be a bit ‘Game of Thrones’ about a particular internal issue. Or screenings of some kind of nonsense in private screening rooms in Soho basements. And also… who really gives a shit, honestly? I barely do and I’m in it.
There is also a massive stack of books I’d love to review -so many that I briefly considered doing two dozen one sentence reviews as a single post. Stephen Skinner has lapped me with book releases. I still haven’t reviewed Techniques of Graeco-Egyptian Magic yet (good) and he’s already brought out the second half, Techniques of Solomonic Magic (better).
In one of these Soho basements, I was listening to a senior economics journalist talk about the true impact of computing and automation being essentially the manifestation of virtual objects in real life. There is an opportunity for the near-infinite expansion of ‘concurrent engineering’ in a virtual space: ie testing hundreds of thousands of iterations of wing design before building the final shortlist.
Have a graph:
You see the efficacy of a concurrent approach over a build -> test -> build -> test -> build -> test -> build approach. This probably says something worthwhile about practical enchantment. While it may be common wisdom to hear that practical enchantment must be combined with real world effort; the hoary example of seeking employment leaps to mind; even that implies that you actually know the outcome in advance. It is still a linear process, it is still “over the wall” enchantment. What if there is a preferred employment outcome in another country or on an oil rig or through friends of friends or some hooker you get talking to at the train station?
A concurrent approach, particularly a whorl of preferred outcomes that differ only slightly, liberally sprinkled with unrelated preferential outcomes and then nailed into reality with a robofish (not enough of you use a robofish) provides better opportunities to pivot during the testing phase. Precision is overrated when you are talking about organic outcomes anyway. Why would you want to specify a sexual partner be precisely this hot and no hotter?
Really this has been the thing about sigils for me. I don’t actually give a shit about them. They’re a lab (a virtual lab?) in which to test probability manipulation that provides much faster iteration speeds than you typically find with spirit work or most folk magic. (Folk magic can iterate reasonably fast but a known, over-the-wall outcome is more likely to be ‘baked in’.)
We live in a world that is having its propaganda collapse all around it. Witness what happened when the Sunday Times attempted that absurd smear on Snowden just in time for the Snoopers Charter to hit parliament. It lasted less than a day before the whole world realised that it -like everything else in geopolitics– is a fucking lie. There is no linearity in any of your medium term outcomes, because there is no linearity in any available narratives. Who knows? By Christmas we might be trading seashells for insulin so that the diabetic gang that lives in the ruins of the next suburb over will fight on your side against the crab people who hold the last remaining gas station in the Midlands.
In chaos there is opportunity. But it is concurrent opportunity, not linear.