TechGnosis: Myth, Magic, and Mysticism in the Age of Information
How does our fascination with expertise intersect with the spiritual mind's eye? In TechGnosis—a cult vintage now up-to-date and reissued with a brand new afterword—Erik Davis argues that whereas the nation-states of the electronic and the religious could appear worlds aside, esoteric and spiritual impulses have actually consistently permeated (and occasionally encouraged) technological conversation. Davis uncovers startling connections among such probably disparate themes as electrical energy and alchemy; on-line roleplaying video games and non secular and occult practices; digital fact and gnostic mythology; programming languages and Kabbalah. the ultimate chapters handle the apocalyptic goals that hang-out expertise, offering very important old context in addition to new how one can take into consideration a destiny outlined by means of the mutant intermingling of brain and desktop, nightmare and delusion.
Polytheism could be a extra acceptable non secular metaphor for the chaos of the recent setting. on the finish of Neuromancer, the factitious intelligence Wintermute achieves cybernetic godhead, yet in count number 0, the following novel within the sequence, we examine that this totalizing details entity fractured into a number of subroutines that by some means took at the habit and character of the gods, or loa, of Vodou—the Haitian spin on New international African faith. For Gibson, Vodou isn't really a determine of superstition.
via slips of the tongue, neurotic compulsions, and desires, which Freud observed as inner dramas that at the same time fulfilled and masked the inchoate drives of the subconscious. the idea that of the identification has more and more come less than assault, however it keeps to motivate the electronic leisure undefined. “Psychologists say within each 18- to 35-year-old male, there lies a possible psychotic killer,” states an outdated advert for the Philips video games Nihilist and conflict Slayer. “Can he pop out to play?” although.
conversation will by some means retailer us. certainly, Langdon Winner used to be extra right than he knew whilst he defined the “almost non secular conviction” society now has within the efficacy and goodness of knowledge machines. At root, the preferred or even utopian hopes invested in info expertise, and particularly within the net, derive from a profound religion within the energy and cost of human communique, its skill to arrive throughout borders, contact minds, motivate intelligence, and either extend and.
Jean-Luc Picard Foreword (2015): “We Cartographers of Old …” In 1901 William James—eminent psychologist, thinker, and pragmatist—delivered a chain of lectures on the college of Edinburgh. James were invited to provide the lectures many years prior, and he had now not settled on an issue until eventually a retreat he spent within the Adirondacks round 1898. Having struggled with intermittent illnesses for years, James was hoping the retreat might function a type of convalescence. in its place, he.
Print once more (and eventually to ebook), is proof adequate that the actual historical past of the technological mind's eye I inform maintains to resonate. regardless of the tumult of technological switch and our fearful dependancy to novelty, mystery histories grants strong maps for the excessive and sobering weirdness that lies forward. After all—and regardless of the militant prayers of the skeptical atheist brigade—religious questions, religious studies, and occult percentages stay wedded to our now.