wasnâ??t experiencing anything at all. Sites of his brain were being selectively stimulated by tight energy-beams emanating from far off, perhaps millions of miles away. These selective brain site stimulations generated in his head the impressionâ??for himâ??that he was seeing and hearing words, pictures, figures of people, in short God, or as Fat liked to call it, the Logos. But, really, he truly imagined he experienced these things. They resembled holograms. What struck me was the oddity of a lunatic discounting his hallucinations in this sophisticated manner: Fat had intellectually dealt himself out of the Game of Madness while still enjoying its sights and sounds. In effect, he no longer claimed that what he experienced was really there. Did this indicate he had begun to sober up? Hardly. Now he held the idea that 'they' or God or someone owned a long-range very tight information rich beam of energy focused on Fatâ??s head. In this I saw no improvement, but it did represent a change. Fat
could now honestly discount his hallucinations, which meant he recognized them as such. But, like Gloria, he now had a they. It seemed to me a pyrrhic victory. Fat’s life struck me as a litany of exactly that, as for example the way he had rescued Gloria.
The Exegesis Fat labored on month after month struck me as a pyrrhic victory if there ever was one—in this case an attempt by a beleaguered mind, to make sense out of the inscrutable. Perhaps this is the key to mental illness: incomprehensible events occur—your life becomes a bin for hoax-like fluctuations of what used to be reality, and not only that—as if that weren’t bad enough—you, like Fat, ponder forever over these fluctuations in an effort to order them into coherency. When in fact the only sense they make is the sense you impose on them, out of the necessity to restore everything into shapes and processes you can recognize.
The first thing to depart in mental illness is the familiar
and what takes its place is bad news because not only can you not understand it, you also cannot communicate it to the other people. The madman experiences something, but what it is or where it comes from he does not know.
In the midst of his shattered landscape Fat imagined God had cured him. Once you notice pyrrhic victories they seem to abound. --- Either he had seen God too soon, or he had seen him too late. In any case it had done him no good at all in terms of survival. Encountering the Living God had not helped to equip him for the tasks of ordinary endurance, which ordinary men, not so favored, handle. --- Men and the world are mutually toxic to each other. But God—the true God—has penetrated both, penetrated man and penetrated the world, and sobers the landscape. But that God, the God from outside, encounters fierce opposition. Frauds—the deceptions of madness—abound, and mask themselves as their mirror opposite: pose as sanity. The masks, however, wear _____ the madness reveals itself. It is _____
writing (inc "MITHC" esp.) there is a preoccupation with fakes + the fake: fake worlds, fake humans, fake objects, fake time, etc. "The authentic human vs the android or reflex machine" is the essence of it. Again + again I attempt to formulate criteria for what is fake + what is not fake, in every area, from a comic book to a world leader to a girl friend to an entire universe. "Things are seldom what they seem" - right. It has to do with reality testing, which is related to another theme of mine: mental illness (which brings in hallucinations) + deliberate deception (v "Penultimate Truth," "The Simulacra," "Game Players of Titan" etc, novels I usually overlook. + mental illness brings in "Martian Time-Slip," "Dr Bloodmoney," "The Simulacra," "Clans." So virtually all of my writing interlocks at this substratum.)
I count 21 books (inc story collections) in which fake vs real is in some way the topic. 22, if "Japed" is included, plus a number of unanthologized stories. In "Sheep" for instance, fake vs real operates on 5 levels:
1) Fake (synthetic) moods (electronically generated) 2) Fake animals (machines) 3) Fake humans (androids) (inc. Fake memories + identity) 4) Fake savior (old wino movie bit player) 5) Fake police station (part of world)
+ in "MITHC" there are deliberately faked objects - in a world the totality of which may be fake (i.e. in which the axis won WWII!)
down the "criminal virus" or as I think it to be, the poison. Mercury is an antidote to syphilis: Hal told me my genius was due to paresis. The effects of Substance D resemble tertiary syphilis. But it was Hal (Barris) who showed the impaired (pseudo) brilliance depicted in "Scanner." The cereal box dream was alluding to "Scanner," that I had the key in that book. Have I not supra written, "my writing is a detoxifying agent" - like mercury? Or - Is mercury the symbol for the toxin or the antidote? Well, mercury is double edged; in measured doses it is medicine (antitoxin); in unmeasured amounts it is a toxin - this is a venerable principle in medicine, certainly known to Paracelsus. Jeter says, "the fucked-up dopers -on Substance D- were the only ones who correctly understood the reality situation." I suspect Dionysos is involved here: madness - genius. Are the "sane" really the insane? Dionysos: the mad (i.e. crazy) god. Maybe he is in touch with reality + what we see when sane is not real. Christ, Dionysos, the "enthusiasmos" of the shaman, of possession by the Holy Spirit. Schizophrenia: the right hemisphere. There is where the truth, + lost faculties lie. (v. "Scanner" - this is specifically stated - + the origins of dreams ("psychosis while asleep" or conversely, schizophrenia is awake dreaming.) Then what's missing is right hem. parity. Bilateral parity. Well, again, "Scanner" is correct. Half our brain is cut off. The bicameral voice! The "Sibyl" - Julian Jaynes.
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