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Thelema Now! Guest: Tobias Churton Beast in Berlin (30 minutes)

Thelema NOW! - November 20, 2014 - 4:26pm

One of Thelema Now's favorite authors returns! The always entertaining Tobias Churton discuss is new book about Uncle Al, focusing on his time in Berlin while Hitler was coming to power. Check it out!

Categories: Podcasts

This bizarre drone decomposes upon impact

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 4:26pm
While we wait for Amazon to figure out how to drone-deliver our next order of energy drinks or iPhone cases, NASA has been busy coming up with a way to make sure when a quadcopter crash-lands somewhere there will no…Read more ›

First trailer for Breaking Bad spinoff leaves us tingly with dread

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 3:56pm
AMC’s highly anticipated prequel spinoff to ‘Breaking Bad’ is starting to come into focus this week, with news that the two-night premiere of ‘Better Call Saul’ is set for February 8th and 9th. AMC will broadcast back-to-back episodes starting at…Read more ›

‘Fake Steve Jobs’ lands new gig as Silicon Valley’s sharpest tongue

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 3:50pm
Dan Lyons, the tech blogger who skewered Apple for years on the popular blog ‘Fake Steve Jobs‘, is making a return to tech blogging as editor-in-chief of Gawker’s anti-Silicon Valley site, Valleywag. Current Valleywag EIC Nitasha Tiku is leaving the…Read more ›

Award-winning task manager Things is free for a week

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 3:25pm
Every week Apple selects a paid app to become its “Free App of the Week” in the App Store, and it usually makes for a decent deal. But this week is the best promotion so far. Things by Cultured Code,…Read more ›

Chevy ‘builds’ laser-powered car for Gran Turismo speed freaks

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 3:18pm
Chevrolet has “built” a laser-powered race car for Gran Turismo 6 fans to rip around the PlayStation track. And they didn’t go the expected route by souping up a Corvette, Camaro or even a Chevette. Instead they partnered with their…Read more ›

Apple schools Xiaomi in art of trash talk

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 1:51pm
  Apple and Xiaomi executives got into a little trash talk fight at the World Internet Conference this week in China. Xiaomi’s CEO Lei Jun described his company as a “small miracle” that’s ready to dominate the smartphone world. But Apple’s general…Read more ›

Take better photographs with The New Age Smartphone Photo Kit [Deals]

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 12:15pm
The camera that is built into your smartphone is a powerful tool. Though powerful, it is really only capable of taking photographs in the same old boring way time and again. Now you can turn your plain old smartphone camera…Read more ›

Foxconn to spend $2.6 billion building a factory exclusively for Apple

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 11:35am
According to a new report from Bloomberg, Foxconn is set to spend $2.6 billion building a new factory in Taiwan exclusively to create displays for Apple. Equipment installation for the factory is likely to begin next month, with the aim of starting…Read more ›

Your next Mac could double as a smart smoke alarm

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 9:14am
Apple may build smoke detectors into future Macs and iOS devices, according to a patent application published Thursday. As users move toward the smart home, courtesy of services like Apple’s HomeKit, the idea is that Macs, iPhones and iPads could intelligently…Read more ›

This is why the iPhone 6 didn’t get a sapphire screen

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 8:00am
No matter what the reason, or who was at fault, the collapse in Apple’s relationship with former sapphire supplier GT Advanced Technologies came down to one thing: the latter company wasn’t able to meet Apple’s terms. Now photos published by…Read more ›

Brain Stimulation and Magical Consciousness

Augoeides - November 20, 2014 - 8:00am
Science News has an article up today about the rising popularity of electrical brain stimulation. The technology is based on solid research, but critics contend that the findings are still preliminary and require more investigation. Many people exploring the field currently make use of DIY techniques and devices, which makes the practice sound a bit fringy, but reading over the article I wonder if I might be seeing a new, more effective method for inducing magical states of consciousness.

The first time Nathan Whitmore zapped his brain, he had a college friend standing by, ready to pull the cord in case he had a seizure. That didn’t happen. Instead, Whitmore started experimenting with the surges of electricity, and he liked the effects. Since that first cautious attempt, he’s become a frequent user of, and advocate for, homemade brain stimulators.

Depending on where he puts the electrodes, Whitmore says, he has expanded his memory, improved his math skills and solved previously intractable problems. The 22-year-old, a researcher in a National Institute on Aging neuroscience lab in Baltimore, writes computer programs in his spare time. When he attaches an electrode to a spot on his forehead, his brain goes into a “flow state,” he says, where tricky coding solutions appear effortlessly. “It’s like the computer is programming itself.”

Whitmore no longer asks a friend to keep him company while he plugs in, but he is far from alone. The movement to use electricity to change the brain, while still relatively fringe, appears to be growing, as evidenced by a steady increase in active participants in an online brain-hacking message board that Whitmore moderates. This do-it-yourself community, some of whom make their own devices, includes people who want to get better test scores or crush the competition in video games as well as people struggling with depression and chronic pain, Whitmore says.
While I am not a proponent of the psychological-only model of magick, altered states of consciousness are part of the process of a magical operation no matter what model you subscribe to. Technological methods such as light and sound machines have been used to alter consciousness for a long time, and as I wrote back in 2006 I was finally able to get eyes-open scrying to work properly by using an alpha-theta meditation program on the Nova Pro. Brain stimulation could offer a more direct method for inducing such states, bypassing light and sound completely.

At this point the area of the brain to stimulate in order to induce magical consciousness is not clear. Researchers don't study ceremonial magicians, though some of the studies of advanced meditators might prove analogous. One exciting possibility is that once this area of the brain is identified, it might be possible to evaluate magick in a more controlled fashion by analyzing the correlations between the different levels of stimulation made possible by this method and shifts in probability. This would be a nice complement to research I've proposed that would compare local brainwave analysis with rates of magical success.

Categories: Occulture

Sony backs out of Steve Jobs movie, but don’t worry!

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 7:30am
Just as Steve Jobs had to go through some frustrating years of failure before returning to Apple to turn in around, so too is the Aaron Sorkin Jobs biopic experiencing its fair share of setbacks. Following the recent news that…Read more ›

Slim Wallet is a spacious leather billfold that eliminates the pocket bulge

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 7:00am
I’m really picky when it comes to buying new wallets. I don’t carry many cards and, much like the Queen of England, I rarely carry cash, so I hate anything that unnecessarily puts a big bulge in my back pocket.…Read more ›

Turn your iPhone into a retro typewriter courtesy of Tom Hanks

Cult of Mac - November 20, 2014 - 6:40am
My Cult of Mac colleague Killian is obsessed with the actor Tom Hanks to an almost worrying degree. I’ve never been to his home before (Killian’s, not Hanks’ — although I’ve not been there either), but I like to imagine…Read more ›

iMessage encryption will kill kids, DOJ warns

Cult of Mac - November 19, 2014 - 7:11pm
The U.S. Department of Justice has issued a chilling warning to Apple executives as a response to increased privacy protections added to iOS 8: Children might die because we can’t hack into bad guys’ iMessages. Deputy Attorney General James Cole…Read more ›

How to make Apple Watch’s custom font the default on your Mac

Cult of Mac - November 19, 2014 - 3:02pm
Apple took the wraps of WatchKit yesterday and revealed an entirely new font created just for Apple Watch called San Francisco. Designers are heaping praise on the sexy new typeface that condenses at larger sizes to take up less space,…Read more ›

Apple to pre-load Beats Music on iOS early next year

Cult of Mac - November 19, 2014 - 2:15pm
You’ll soon have Beats Music on your iOS device whether you want it or not. Apple is planning to bake the streaming music service into iOS in early 2015, according to The Financial Times. The integration could happen “as early…Read more ›


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