Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Worshipping the Occult

oc·cult adj.
  1. Of, relating to, or dealing with supernatural influences, agencies, or phenomena.
  2. Beyond the realm of human comprehension; inscrutable.
  3. Available only to the initiate; secret: occult lore.
  4. Hidden from view; concealed
Call me kooky (or call me Ishmael, if you are a fan of Melville) but on occasion I like to run down the etymology of a word to get a better sense of its meaning. Just the other day I found that the root of occult, which evoked images of The Omen in my little noggin, is occulere: to hide, make secret or cover over. In other words, those who, like myself a few days ago, thought of secret occult rituals were wasting precious time in redundency, and confusing themselves to boot. It doesn't matter what else you are doing, Dude, I thought, just by being secretive, it becomes occult.

A ha, I thought, (really) perhaps there is some truth to the notion that some portion of Anglo-American society and by virtue thereof, some portion of the elite, worships the occult. They obviously think the best results (for whom being the open question) occur when true aims are hidden and the means used are obscured.

I don't intend this to be a partisan post, the problem transcends the bicameral system. Look at it this way, long gone are the days when economic policy wasn't occult (read Secrets of the Temple again only this time think about it.) If that doesn't jog your thinking, do you really believe the economic data from Washington, do you Remember the Maine!, do you believe that rebels in Iraq are in their "last throes", or even that US armed forces went to war in Iraq to eliminate WMD? How much oil do we have left anyway?

I have these flashes a few times a week when some word I have used in the past becomes more clearly defined in my mind. Sometimes the change in my thinking is trivial (ah, HOT means don't touch) and sometimes it is more profound (wow, that is part of what you are referring to when you say, God). I thought initially that the change in my thinking from the clarification of the term "occult" would be a trivial one but last night I started thinking about all the warnings in history and literature about the occult- warnings from people who understood the original meaning of the term, by the way.

Maybe there is a bit of virtue to being overt; saying what you mean and meaning what you say. Maybe the penalties for worshipping the occult, either in one's own life or by following those who do, are substantial, and by virtue of the practice, hidden from view. Remember, just because you don't have a pentagram (or is that Pentagon) inscribed on your floor, doesn't mean it isn't occult.

Maybe Dharma would be easy to find, if we would just stop hiding it from ourselves.

Wow, this is too heavy for a hot day, time to turn up the tunes...see you later (not if I see you first sayeth the peanut gallery). Here comes the Steely Dan now (click me)


Thomas said...

Welcome back, Dude!

rr_ said...

What are some of the warnings in history and literature about the occult?

Dude said...

There are many warnings.

Confusion tends to be the ultimate result, a culturally destructive confusion.