Monday, January 29, 2007

Quantum Magick?

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.

``The word of Aiwaz must put forth a perfect presentation of the Universe as Necessary, Intelligible, Self-subsistent, as Integral, Absolute and Immanent. It must satisfy all intuitions, explain all enigmas, and compose all conflicts. It must reveal Reality, reconcile Reason with Relativity; and, resolving not only all antimonies in the Absolute, but all antipathies in the appreciation of Aptness, assure the acquiescence of every faculty of mankind in the perfection of its pleniary propriety.''

(Crowley, Book 4)


I begin to suspect that ``mainstream science'' and ``magick'' meet somewhere in the realms of energy. (Let me just remind myself again that ``the laws of magick are the laws of nature'' so they presumably meet everywhere, if I but knew it.) To a physicist, energy is the primal Stuff. Since the increasing success of mathematical models in predicting the behaviour of interacting systems of energy, it has become in many quarters almost tautological that the goal of modern science is the Discovery Of The Equation By Which All May Be Known. I think there's a case to be argued that this belief was at its most widespread and virulent, at least among physicists, just at the end of the previous AEon and the birth of the electronic and information ages. The whole joy of mathematics is that is it observer-independent, obeying the eternal laws of its own self-consistency. Using the tools of pure mathematics physical science could confidently talk about reality independent of any particular observer and therefore eternal, absolute, true. The very same mathematics that gave us atom bombs and laptop computers tells us that reality is relative, massively interconnected in a vest web of relationships, runs on probabilistic laws and only unifiable by going to higher dimensions. Cabalists among you may amused to note that one current theory (that of ``superstrings'') --- quite credibly asserts this number to be ten.

A signal or vibration may be understood in various ways. We may speak of velocity, a vector combining rate and direction and motion, or frequency, the rate of vibration or oscillation. In one domain, a signal consisting a single frequency may be represented by a sine wave extending from +infinity to -infinity, in another by a single `spike' (or `delta function.') In mathematics, these various domains are connected via well-defined operations known as `transforms.' The technique first encountered by most is the `Fourier Transform' in which a complex signal may be decomposed into a superposition, or vector sum, of a number of individual sine waves. A branch of applied calculus, transform mathematics is a very powerful tool. In `Signal Processing' (encountered mostly by electrical engineers and physicists) a signal once obtained from an input device (such as a microphone or aerial) may be digitised and passed through a Fourier transform. This switches the information from time domain to frequency domain. Noise and static may be attenuated by reducing the signal's amplitude at higher frequencies before performing a second Fourier transform (back into time domain) and hence to the output device (loudspeaker, etc.)

Why is this interesting? Well, I've tried to indicate how operations may be performed on the signal when in one domain, before transform and use in another. In terms of my own practice, such ideas have given me a useful basis for interacting with my energetic system. Performing a ``Sanskrit transform'' results in the perception of experience as being delivered through a number of primary discrete sites of energetic activity, the `chakras.' A ``Qabalistic transform''imparts a Sephirotic view of ones micro-macrocosm, but again, feeling and sensation is delivered through the energy body, which in some way seems to ``carry the reality'' in ``transform space.'' These transforms are very useful, as we know. Experience indicates that meditation on or more active work with aspects of the chakras is over time reflected by changes in other aspects of one's reality. Each transform presents the user with a different toolkit for interacting with the energy. The results of using multiple transform techniques to produce hybrid offspring are a matter of ongoing research.

Quantum Theory: some implications

Quantum mechanics (QM) is the branch of modern physics dealing with the Very Small. It has only been in this century that the theory of `atoms' as the `fundamental, non-divisible building blocks of matter' has been able to be tested. Atoms were indeed observed, but were soon discovered to be composite objects. As physicists probed deeper and deeper into the atom, all pre-existing concepts about the nature of matter had to be discarded. The investigation of physical reality at quantum distances has revealed a very strange realm in which time cannot really be said to exist, everything is connected to almost everything else, and the mathematical description of reality is given in terms of probability matrices, a superposition of possibilities in which the act of making a measurement or observation so affects the system that the observer experiences fundamental, mathematically unbreakable limitations on the limits to certainty, on what may be known and what must, by the very act of knowing one thing, be itself unknowable. To quote the physicist David Bohm,

Ultimately the entire universe has to be understood as a single undivided whole, in which analysis into separately and independently existent parts has no fundamental status.

One discovers... both from the consideration of the meaning of the mathematical equations and from the results of actual experiments, that the various particles have to be taken literally as projections of a higher dimensional reality which cannot be accounted for in terms of any force of interaction between them. [In other words:] We may regard each of the `particles' constituting a system as a projection of a `higher dimensional reality' rather than as a separate particle. [db80]

Hence, the mathematics may be viewed in various ways. When applied as a tool in Malkuth, QM has given rise to the modern semiconductor technologies behind the new computing and information infrastructure. When considered magickally, a workable interface between psi phenomena, consciousness, bioenergetics and synchronicity is established. We're getting quite near to where I've been trying to hasten us: the frontiers of science, where mathematics and mysticism almost visibly blur. Mathematics is the universal language of physicists, and as such perhaps the most powerful magickal language in daily use on this planet. A language in which `work' `force' `power' `acceleration' `field strength' `energy' `mass' and `current' all refer to well defined concepts, and observable quantities. Mathematics has provided the most effective magickal framework yet for enquiry into the nature and structure of matter (which we now know to be a form of energy, and vice versa.) I've mentioned interconnectedness a few times now, and will in a moment give a brief description of why I've been doing so.

Quantum mechanics is an ongoing revolution. An entirely new mathematics was developed, which made phenomenally accurate predictions of the behaviour of the observed physical realm at scales millions of times too small to see with a microscope. In fact, it goes down to the shortest distance which can be meaningfully said to exist. As I've mentioned, the first technological spinoffs --- typified by the microchip and consumer electronics --- have already begun to appear. Another effect of this revolution was to demolish existing physical reality maps, leaving a lot of people very confused. In the old world, matter was seen as composed of particles which clumped together to form visible matter, and interacted in ways resembling a tiny game of billiards. In order to know anything about the state of a physical system (or game of billiards) one must make an observation. If playing in the dark of our lack of knowledge, we must shine a light at the table. While once conceived of as waves of energy, propagating through an `ether' which filled all space and never actually moved itself, it was discovered that light can also sometimes give results which are inexplicable unless it is seem as a beam of separate particles known as `photons.' Now these particles impact the balls on the table and, even if only slightly, disturb them in the process. In observing/measuring the system (by looking at the light reflected from the table,) we have disturbed it. We also note that light has a 'wavelength', the distance in space traversed by the light as it goes through one oscillation of its electromagnetic field. In order to make more accurate observations, a shorter wavelength of light is necessary, which has a correspondingly higher energy, so increasing the disturbance caused by the impacting photons. This fundamental fact, that observation causes a disturbance means that we can never accurately know the state of a system before we observe it from the data gained by so doing. Strange perhaps, but true.

Among other things, Einstein is famous for his remark, `God does not play dice.' Quantum-level systems are described as superpositions of possibilities, which on observation resolve to a single observed actuality. However, it's not possible to predict which of the various outcomes will actually happen... only to assign probabilities. QM gives a method for calculating these probabilities, and this it does very well. Einstein believed that there were definite laws with definite outcomes somehow `hidden' behind this quantum facade. Moreover, QM seemed in places to predict outcomes clearly at odds with the universe as understood through Einstein's theories of relativity. The speed of light had been measured, and shown to be a constant, everywhere, in all directions regardless of the observer's velocity. \footnote{ This fact is key to Einstein's unification of space, time and gravity into a system which not only makes the similar predictions as Newton's laws of motion when applied to heavenly bodies, but better ones. A theory which unifies the curvature of spacetime with the presence of mass, and so explains why light rays are `bent' by stars.) } Quantum mechanics seemed to indicate the presence of interactions taking place at speeds greater than that of light's. In his attempt to indicate the inconsistencies which he perceived in the prevailing interpretation, he formulated what came to be known as the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen (EPR) experiment. Three decades later John Bell formulated a theorem based on this experiment which when tested proved Einstein very wrong indeed. While energy cannot travel faster than c, the speed of light, some aspects of quantum state certainly can. This has some interesting ramifications.

Bell's Theorem and Consciousness

If we take a guitar string and fix both its ends before plucking it, we will find that only a certain set of notes can be produced. These harmonics are defined by the geometry of the arrangement, since the only frequencies allowed are those that have antinodes (zero-points) at the two fixed ends. We could say that the set of notes has been quantised, that is, reduced to a finite set of discrete tones. The mathematics used when dealing with waves and vibrations is to a large extent that used when describing the structure of reality at the very small, quantum levels. An electron orbiting an atom may be represented as a sum of possible states of vibration using the techniques first developed by Fourier, as mentioned earlier. We find that an electron, like the guitar string, has a discrete set of possible states. One of the discrete variables used to represent the state of a subatomic particle is that known as `spin,' a peculiar quality which is quantised into one of only two values, `up' and `down.' For a closed system --- one not open to external influences --- we know that ``spin is conserved,'' meaning that the total sum of all spins in the system remains constant.

I'll now attempt to outline how Bell's Theorem makes use of this fact. Let us imagine an experimental setup in which we have two sub-atomic particles in close proximity to each other, one with spin `up' and one with spin `down' making the total spin of the system zero. We now allow these two particles to move away from each other, each moving towards a detector of some kind. In order to make a point, let's stretch out a bit and place one detector here in our lab and the other on the moon. Now, the first particle enters the detector in the lab, and we make an observation designed to measure its spin. Now, I said spin was peculiar, and so it is, for while spin may only be `up' or `down' this may be with respect to any arbitrarily chosen axis. This time, we place our axis running from two'o'clock to eight'o'clock --- the detector is designed to allow us to change this axis at will, we'll say. Now, observing the first particle we find that it's spin is either `up' (pointing to eleven'o'clock) or `down' (pointing to five'o'clock) --- we have no way of telling in advance which it will be, but we know that it must be one of these two. This time we find it's got spin `up' and so points to eleven'o'clock.

The experiment has been so arranged that the particle approaching the moon-side detector has not quite got there yet, but will do so in a shorter time than it would take a photon of light sent from the earth-side detector to the moon-side detector to arrive. Since spin is conserved, as soon as we observe the first particle to have spin `up' with an arbitrarily chosen axis so as to `point' to eleven'o'clock, we predict that the second particle will be observed to have spin `down' so as to `point' to five'o'clock. This is found to be the case --- but look what's happened! Somehow, the second particle has taken the correct alignment (enforced by our arbitrary choice of axis) in a time less than that necessary for a signal travelling at the speed of light to reach it from the first. The mathematics predicts that this will happen. Einstein, believing it impossible, thought he'd found a flaw in the maths. Observations since then have shown that in fact, the maths' predictions are found to be correct --- but Einstein's equations still hold. The speed of light is the absolute, universal limit to the speed at which energy may propagate through space, which is true, and will always be true. What we are coming to understand however is that quantum state is a form of information, and is not so limited. It is everywhere, at once. We should not see our two particles as being separate entities, but as a single system. When we observe this system, its entire, distributed quantum state changes, instantaneously. This `non-local' interconnectedness is I believe at the heart of the `new physics,' and interestingly brings physics increasingly close to the mysticism which it once so vigorously rejected. All things are in constant and continuous communication with everything else they've ever encountered, in a manner that totally transcends spacetime as we understand it. At a quantum level, the manifest universe must be seen as a complete, unitive, effectively indivisible whole. Is this beginning to sound familiar to anyone?

While this is so at very small distances, in the macroscopic world of cars, trees, chairs, planets and so on, reality seems pretty much to behave as first described by Newton. The `ten thousand things' can most certainly be seen as separate objects with no obvious connections to anything else... which is perhaps why these findings of modern physics have influenced the popular mind just about as much as mystic Daoism --- that is, hardly at all. Indeed, it's not immediately obvious that all this low-level weirdness is relevant at all to the nature of day-to-day reality. Of course, I wouldn't have brought you this far if I believed that to be the case.

The human nervous system consists some 10^{12} neurons, most of them in the brain and spinal column. Each neuron has a number of inputs from other neurons (typically between one and ten thousand), and a similar number of outputs. For a given pattern of inputs, a neuron will either do nothing, or `fire,' sending a pulse of current to each of its outputs. Neurons are modelled as having an input `threshold,' which the total input current must exceed in order for the neuron to fire. The connection between consciousness and the pattern of neural firings is not at all well understood. At the join between one neuron and another is a very small gap, across which an electric current is able to propagate. What is interesting is that this gap is so small --- about two to three hundred angstroms (two to three hundred millionths of a meter) --- that quantum fluctuations may be expected to influence perhaps up to a million neurons at any one time. \footnote{The idea being that the neurons are close to the threshold, and are only tipped over as a result of quantum-level interactions.} These fluctuations may be due to changes occurring elsewhere within the nervous system... or somewhere totally different, like, in a star a million light years away. It's quite possible.

Now, the role of quantum mechanics in consciousness is hotly disputed. Some philosophers assert that consciousness arises from `complex interactions' occurring between neurons, which could perhaps one day be reproduced on a computer... this is a `Strong AI (Artificial Intelligence)' viewpoint. Others are not so sure, and feel that consciousness and QM may be tightly bound together, and this is the side which I am here favouring. Many of you will be familiar with the phenomena termed `synchronicity' by Carl Jung, in which seemingly `random coincidences' take on a deep personal significance. Indeed, I expect that you have found that the practice of magick has rather increased the rate of these events... and that you have found yourself encountering other folk in strangely similar situations. At the quantum level, reality is an indivisible, massively interconnected whole. Each nervous system is embedded into this whole in such a way as that its very functioning would appear to impinge on the fabric of the whole, spreading `virtual vibrations' out across spacetime. As above, so below. Quantum structures within and without and a proven mechanism --- non local interactions --- for interfacing between the two. By acting so as to affect the patterns of interaction and vibration within our nervous systems we in so doing, affect the external quantum structure of the entire universe. In short, modern physics and magick would seem to be saying identical things. Surprise, surprise.

Before we make an observation, QM tells us that reality is `unformed'... it exists only as a superposition of probabilities. This truth is popularly known as the ``Schrodinger's Cat'' paradox. On making an observation, the ``wave function'' describing the set of possible states (itself a Fourier sum of all possibilities, as already mentioned) ``collapses'' and we're left with a single, observed state. This collapse is very mysterious, since it involves so-called `hidden variables' involved with the non-local nature of reality. Some people have suggested `consciousness' and `will' as elements playing crucial roles in determining the outcome of an observation.

Any event, such as an observation of quantum state, involves the union of an observer and a Fourier sum of possible outcomes. While only a discrete number of possible states may be said to exist in any one situation, each term in the Fourier series must be treated as being infinite in itself. Treating the observer as a point consciousness (and as a quantum detector, that's fair) we are here looking at the union of a point (hadit) with infinite possibility (nuit) --- which interact in a mysterious way in which both will and consciousness are potentially implicated.

Our interactions with the universe are becoming clearer. As I mentioned at the start, energy is the `primal stuff' of both physics and magick. What I've been trying to indicate is that modern physics has found that energy is at a quantum level strangely entangled with the nature of consciousness. As my kundalini teacher says, `Be aware of the energy. That's the kundalini energy, the awareness. The awareness is the energy. The energy is the awareness.' Awareness is observation, is making changes at the quantum-unity level of reality. As awareness increases, harmonics develop, a synergetic building of gestalt consciousness which tends to excite similar reactions in the surrounding outside world, delivering synchronicities. Acts of love under will --- nuit/hadit unions --- allow us to affect the fields of quantum probability, hastening the process. The `body of light' may be seen at one level as awareness of quantum reality beyond the body, \footnote{On another, the body's bio-electromagnetic fields are also perceptible as energy fields.} yet still bound into the body at the level of quantum interactions in the synaptic cleft between neurons. There is no obvious limit to the extent of this perception, for as it is written,

``For the seer hath no head; it has expanded into the universe, a vast and silent sea, crowned with the stars of night.''

(The Vision and the Voice, 5th AEthyr.)

I reminded us at the beginning that ``The laws of magick are the laws of nature.'' One of those laws is known to be, E = mc^{2}. The law as summarised by the symbol string ThELHMA is equally true when applied to the investigation of the interactions of energy, consciousness and spacetime. Let us all look forward to the day when this is more widely appreciated. Thanks for coming, and I hope you enjoyed the ride.

Love is the Law, Love under Will.

Friday, January 26, 2007

my two beautiful friends evan and pop took me to see roger waters the guy from pink floyd last night, they had amazing tickets right at the front of the stage. waters looks good for 62, he came on with an 8 piece band and three backing vocalists and sung some of the floyds greatest songs, including a brilliant 'set the controls for the heart of the sun.'
other highlights were, 'dogs, shine on, leaving beruit, brick in the wall, and of course the complete Dark Side.'
Dark side of the Moon still sends shivers along my spine when i hear its opening heartbeat, for a space rock band Floyd recorded one of the most earthy pieces ever and a conceptual piece that touches the underneath subconscious realms of human existence, life is suffering, painful, mundane and bleak, it is filled with neurosis and fear.

From wikipedia..


The Dark Side of the Moon deals conceptually with the pressures of modern life that can drive normal human beings to insanity: materialism, the increased pace of life and travel, the encroachment of old age and death, and the inhumanities of society and armed conflict. These themes are not just delivered by words but are suggested with the sounds and lyrics of the album. For example, the sound of an airplane crash in the track "On the Run" can represent a fear of flight. "Time" discusses how quickly life can slip by those who are unaware of it and uses actual alarm bells to wake the listener at the beginning of the track. "The Great Gig in the Sky," which had a working title of "The Mortality Sequence," comments on the nature of death as a sad state of being, evidenced by the sounds of the screaming woman throughout this generally instrumental track. The lyrics and sound effects of "Money" flippantly endorse greed for ironic effect, and states that it is "the root of all evil today." "Us and Them" deals with interpersonal conflict and the insanity of warfare and xenophobia. The meaning of "Any Colour You Like" is not as clear as the other songs, but it is thought to represent the fear of taking risks when making choices - the song title came from an answer frequently given by a studio technician to questions put to him: "You can have it any colour you like," which was a reference to Henry Ford's description of the Model T: "You can have it any color you like, as long as it's black." "Brain Damage" reaches out to the outsiders ("lunatics") who may be the only people that recognize society's faults. It also is about their former member Syd Barrett, who was forced to leave the band due to mental illness. Finally, "Eclipse" describes the true essence of a person through the impact they have left on others. "The Dark Side of the Moon" is the greatest album ever. It's a scientfic fact!
Precursors to the Dark Side concept can be found in many of Pink Floyd's earlier works. The band had previously performed a conceptual piece, The Man and the Journey, based on the everyday life of a man during their 1969 European tour. Roger Waters' lyrical obsession with insanity was in part precipitated by the departure of Syd Barrett (a founding member of Pink Floyd) following his mental collapse. Perhaps most important to the gestation of Dark Side is the song "Echoes" from "Meddle," which also deals with interpersonal relationships using progressive ambient music. However, the decision to tackle individual parts of life in an album-length concept work is said to have been conceived during a band meeting in Nick Mason's kitchen circa late 1971.
In a small garden shed-turned-recording studio at his home, Roger Waters both wrote all of the lyrics in the album and created the early demo tracks. It was in there he also created the intro to Money by experimenting with dropping a range of monetary objects.


Recorded at Abbey Road Studios between June 1972 and January 1973, the album sessions made use of the most advanced techniques available for recording instruments and sound effects in rock music at that time. Along with the conventional rock band instrumentation, Pink Floyd added prominent synthesizers to their sound as well as some unconventional noises: an assistant engineer running around the studio's echo chamber (during "On the Run"), myriad antique clocks chiming simultaneously (as the intro to "Time"), and a specially-treated bass drum made to sound like a human heartbeat (at the beginning and end of the album).
Another novelty found on Dark Side is the metronomic sequence of sound effects played during "Speak to Me" and "Money." This was achieved by laboriously splicing together recordings of ringing cash registers, clinking coins, tearing paper, and buzzing counting machines onto a two-track tape loop (later adapted to four tracks in order to create a unique "walk around the room" effect in quadrophonic presentations of the album). Pink Floyd also perfected the use of other studio techniques such as the doubletracking of vocals and guitars (allowing David Gilmour to harmonize flawlessly with himself), flanging effects, odd trickery with reverb and the panning of sounds between channels. To this day, audiophiles use The Dark Side of the Moon as a reference standard to test the fidelity of audio equipment despite the fact that it was originally mixed from third-generation tape with Dolby noise reduction.

Snippets of dialogue between and over the top of the songs are also featured on the recording. Roger Waters devised a method of interviewing people, whereby questions were printed on flashcards in sequential order and the subject's responses were recorded uninterrupted. The questions related to central themes of the album such as madness, violence, and death. Participants were commandeered from around Abbey Road, placed in the darkened studio in front of a microphone, and told to answer the questions in the order which they were presented. This provoked some surprising responses to subsequent questions. For example, the question "When was the last time you were violent?" was immediately followed by "Were you in the right?".
Recordings of road manager Roger "The Hat" Manifold were the only ones obtained through a conventional sit-down interview because the band members couldn't find him at the time and his responses (including "give 'em a quick, short, sharp shock..." and "live for today, gone tomorrow, that's me...") had to be taped later when the flashcards had been lost. Another roadie, Chris Adamson, was on tour with Pink Floyd at the time and recorded his explicit diatribe that opens the album ("I've been mad for fucking years, absolutely years, over the edge for yonks...").
Pink Floyd's executive road manager Peter 'Puddie' Watts (father of actress Naomi Watts) contributed the repeated laughter during "Brain Damage" and "Speak to Me." The monologue about "geezers" who were "cruisin' for a bruisin'" and the often-misheard "I never said I was frightened of dying" (during the middle of "The Great Gig in the Sky") came from Peter's wife, Myfanwy 'Miv' Watts.
The responses "And I am not frightened of dying, any time will do I don't mind. Why should I be frightened of dying, there's no reason for it you've got to go some time" (during "The Great Gig in the Sky") and closing words "there is no dark side of the Moon really... matter of fact it's all dark" (over the "Eclipse" heartbeats) came from the Abbey Road Studios' Irish doorman at the time, Gerry Driscoll. Paul and Linda McCartney were also interviewed, but their answers were considered too cautious for inclusion. McCartney's bandmate Henry McCullough contributed the famous line "I don't know, I was really drunk at the time."
Alan Parsons engineered the album while on staff at Abbey Road. He once said in an interview that he swapped shifts with colleagues in order to work on the whole project.


The Dark Side of the Moon is one of the best-selling albums of all time worldwide, and the 20th-best-selling album in the United States. It peaked at #1 on The Billboard 200 dethroning Alice Cooper's Billion Dollar Babies from the top spot. Though it held the #1 spot for only one week (it was displaced by Elvis Presley's Aloha from Hawaii), it spent a record total of 741 consecutive weeks (over 14 years) on that list. It was on the chart from its release until leaving the chart on April 23, 1988. To this day, it occupies a prominent spot on Billboard's Pop Catalog Chart, reaching #1 when the 2003 hybrid CD/SACD edition was released and sold 800,000 copies in the U.S. alone. On the week of May 5, 2006, Dark Side of the Moon achieved a combined total of 1500 weeks on the Billboard 200 and Pop Catalog charts.
Sales of the album worldwide total over 40 million as of 2004, with an average of 8,000 copies sold per week and a total of 400,000 in the year of 2002 — making it the 200th-best-selling album of that year nearly three decades after its initial release. It is estimated that one in every 14 people in the U.S. under the age of 50 owns or owned a copy of this album.[4] According to an August 2, 2006 Wall Street Journal article, although the album was released in 1973, it has sold 7.7 million copies since 1991 in the U.S. alone and continues to log 9600 sales per week domestically.
The LP was released before platinum awards were introduced by the RIAA on January 1, 1976, and it initially only received a gold disc. However, after the introduction of the album on CD, Dark Side would eventually be certified Platinum in 1990 and then Diamond by 1999 in America. It is now at 15x Platinum and counting. "Time", "Money" and "Us and Them" remain radio call-in request favorites, with "Money" having sold well as a single in its own right.
In 1979 The Dark Side of the Moon was released as a half-speed mastered audiophile LP by Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab (MFSL). It has been re-released several times on CD. The first CD was a Capitol/EMI issue followed by the MFSL Gold CD. Then it was re-released as a remastered CD as part of the 1992 box set "Shine On." The 1992 remaster was then re-released as a 20th Anniversary box set edition with postcards and in its own right in 1994 in the UK and April of 1995 in the US.
The Dark Side of the Moon was re-released as a 30th anniversary hybrid SACD with a 5.1 channel DSD surround sound version remixed from the original 16-track studio tapes. Some surprise was expressed when longtime producer James Guthrie was called in to mix the new surround mix rather than the original LP engineer, Alan Parsons. This 30th anniversary edition won four Surround Music Awards in 2003, the same year that Rolling Stone magazine named Dark Side of the Moon the 43rd greatest album of all time. The Dark Side of the Moon was also re-released in 2003 on 180-gram virgin vinyl and included reprints of the original posters and stickers that came with the original vinyl release, along with a new 30th anniversary poster.
In 1997, The Dark Side of the Moon was named the 6th greatest album of all time in a 'Music of the Millennium' poll conducted by HMV, Channel 4, The Guardian and Classic FM. In 1998, Q magazine readers placed it at number 10, while in 2001 the United States cable television channel VH1 placed it at number 51. In 2000 Q placed it at number 11 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever. Channel 4 placed it at #5 in Channel 4's "100 Greatest Albums."
In 2006, The Dark Side of the Moon was voted the ultimate life changing track (despite being the only full album in the shortlist) in a Music Club poll conducted by the Jeremy Vine radio show on BBC Radio 2.
After a poll of its readers, in the October 2006 edition of Guitar World Magazine, Dark Side of the Moon was named the 5th greatest guitar album of all time. It placed behind the albums Led Zeppelin IV by Led Zeppelin, Appetite for Destruction by Guns N' Roses, Are You Experienced by The Jimi Hendrix Experience, and Master of Puppets by Metallica, which earned spots 1-4, respectively.
In December 2006, the results of a nation-wide poll by the ABC Australia to find Australia's favorite album entitled My Favourite Album resulted in The Dark Side of the Moon being voted #1 — Australia's favorite album of all time.


When the album is played simultaneously with the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz, numerous images from the film appear to uncannily synchronize with the music and lyrics. Band members firmly state the phenomenon, dubbed "Dark Side of the Rainbow" by fans, is a coincidence.
In November 2006, a poll of 100,000 Australians conducted by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation found that Dark Side of the Moon was the nation's favourite album of all time. Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here and The Wall also appeared, at #11 and #14 respectively. [1]
Although the title "The Dark Side of the Moon" was the planned title of the album, upon the discovery that the band Medicine Head was to release an album of the same name the year prior to Pink Floyds' release, they changed the album's working title to "Eclipse: A Piece for Assorted Lunatics." However, the Medicine Head album flopped on the Billboard Charts, so Pink Floyd was able to revert back to the original title without trouble.
Some editions of the album (including those in the Shine On box set and the live version on initial pressings of P*U*L*S*E) have slightly different songwriting credits: they add Roger Waters' name to "Speak to Me" and "The Great Gig in the Sky", and Richard Wright's name to "On the Run". These credits reverted to their original form on the SACD re-release in 2003. The DVD reissue of P*U*L*S*E includes Clare Torry's name next to Wright's, in recognition of her contributions to "The Great Gig in the Sky" (the aftermath of a court settlement).
Although now, with the advent of computerized mixing desk automation, the album could be mixed by one person, many songs on Dark Side of the Moon (particularly "On the Run") originally required every member of the band to operate the faders simultaneously in order to mix down the intricately assembled multitrack recording.
Because the original LP record had two sides, there was a break between "The Great Gig in the Sky" and "Money", which did not exist in live performances. Alan Parsons added a small crossfade between these two tracks for the digitally remastered CD. The remastering was supervised by James Guthrie and Doug Sax.
Before the album was officially released, the band had been playing a more traditional jam session (without the use of synthesizers and other electronic instruments) in place of the song "On the Run" called "The Travel Section" or "The Travel Sequence". A short clip of this is played on the DVD "Classic Albums: The Making of Dark Side of the Moon" and can also be heard on all performances of Pink Floyd playing the album live in 1972.
On most CD pressings, a barely-audible orchestral version of The Beatles' "Ticket to Ride" is audible after "Eclipse", playing very faintly over the heartbeats that close the album. It is unknown why this was included, but it was probably the consequence of a mastering error. The bootleg recording A Tree Full of Secrets includes an amplified, re-processed version of this oddity, which allows it to be heard clearly.
In 2003, VH1 named the album cover of Dark Side of the Moon the 4th greatest of all time. The prism illustration is one of the most recognisable works of designer and photographer Storm Thorgerson. The network's "Classic Albums" series presented an in-depth programme on The Dark Side of the Moon; it was later released on DVD and included interviews with Gilmour, Mason, Waters, Wright, Alan Parsons, Storm Thorgerson and Chris Thomas about the making of the album.
Dark Side of the Moon was the first Pink Floyd album to have a custom picture label depicting a blue prism with black background with the credits in gray lettering (the US edition's lettering was in white).
Although many artists have performed individual songs on Dark Side in cover versions, several have chosen to pay tribute to the album by performing it in its entirety. On November 2, 1998, jam-band Phish covered the entire album at one of their smaller concerts in Utah. Likewise, jam-band moe. covered the entire album in 2000 at their halloween show in Philadelphia
In 2000, The Squirrels released The Not So Bright Side of the Moon, their cover of the album. New York reggae label Easy Star All-Stars commissioned a reggae version of the album, entitled Dub Side of the Moon, which closely copied the original Dark Side but added additional material.
Dream Theater went so far as to release a live DVD containing their cover; although it was not released officially, it is available through the web site YtseJam Records. They performed the show at the Hammersmith Apollo in London during 2005. Guest musicians appearing with the band for this performance included Norbert Satchel from Roger Waters' band and Theresa Thomason on vocals. A previous performance took place in Amsterdam, Holland, but this was not released.
Humorous tributes to Pink Floyd's work are also common. In 2006, Richard Cheese released his greatest hits album, The Sunny Side of the Moon, which contained a cover version of "Another Brick in the Wall" (originally from the album The Wall). In the "Fairly OddParents" animated television program, Timmy Turner goes to his hippie teacher's yard sale, where he finds an album called Dark Side of the Smoof. Even Pink Floyd themselves have parodied this album, the parody title being Dark Side of the Moo.
In 2006, a bootleg version of Alan Parsons' original quadrophonic mix of the album, copied from the original master tapes, was released on the internet in high quality DVD Audio format. Despite Parsons' misgivings about this mix, which was made in much less time than the stereo mix and without input from the band, it has proved popular with fans.
Roger Waters' 2006 tour, The Dark Side Of The Moon Live, consists of performances divided into two sets, the second of which constitutes The Dark Side of the Moon in its entirety. Nick Mason agreed to join him and play drums on Dark Side during the shows at Reykjavík, Iceland on June 12; at Cork, Ireland on June 29; at London, England on July 1; at Lucca, Italy on July 12, and at the Magny-Cours F1 Race Circuit in France on July 14.
In 1990, Australian radio listeners voted it the best album to make love to.
At the Canadian Music Week conference in Toronto, Canada on March 3, 2006, during a Q&A with the audience, engineer Alan Parsons revealed that first-efforts to get a heartbeat sound on the track Eclipse involved Parsons, followed by various members of the band, holding a microphone up to their chests. Not having any success, they found a solution in recording a bass drum with some effects.
The Neapolitan parody singer Tony Tammaro and his band released on June 2005: The Dark Side Of The Moonezz , where Moonnezz is a phonetic pun since it sounds like " Munnezz' ", the Neapolitan word for " Urban Wastes ", " Garbage ", " Trash ". This concept album explores the flaws and merits of the Neapolitan society starting from the problem of garbage disposal ( Munnezz' ) and having a journey through love, childhood, cellphone addiction, music piracy, money, government failures, generational conflicts and annihilation of the individuals in the mass. The Dark Side Of The Moonezz has several direct allusions and tributes to Pink Floyd's discography from the main themes of Dark Side Of The Moon to "Wish You Were Here."
Pink Floyd's album The Dark Side of the Moon was released in 1973 (before the introduction of audio CDs) and has since been reissued 16 times in total: three times in 1973; once in 1978; once in 1982; once in 1990; four times in 1991; once as a special edition in 1993; once in 1995; once in 2001; and once in 2003 as a special edition SACD celebrating the album's thirtieth anniversary.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The Definitive Head Job
Captain Mission

I had started the writers group for one reason only, and that was to meet intelligent sexually liberated young girls who I could impress with my provocative short stories, worldly travels and quirky off beat sense of humour.
The ad ran in the local paper and by mid afternoon I had already received about 16 calls, mostly from women. I took numbers and then called them back in the evening, when I had more of an idea of what I was going to do. Strategically I did not call any of the men that responded. Fuck them!
They can run their own ads.
Well the karmic joke was that all the women, except one, were over sixty.
You have to laugh sometimes, me I laugh all the time these days, but back then I kinda choked.
Our first and last meeting was at my place and in preparation I hid all my porno mags and movies, bought a teacake and washed some cups and cleaned my teeth.
One by one I greeted the geriatric wanna-be writers as they arrived, all showed tremendous surprise when they saw me open the door. My sophisticated telephone manner did not match my shabby slightly threatening renegade appearance.
We sat in the predictable circle, that seemed to manifest around me sipping tea and smiling awkwardly, I felt like a wolf amongst the hens, a shark amongst the minnow but it was more than likely I was just another man with teenager urges amongst a group of sophisticated and experienced old ladies.
I could feel the expectation upon me to take control and initiate the group.
I made the introductory speech, the humble writer, shy, introverted and nervous, not wanting to take any responsibility for my creation, I bumbled along in a cross between Marvyn Haggler and Woody Allen kinda way.
However there was one younger girl in our group who looked interesting enough for me to impress. She was not classically beautiful, she was not really attractive either, but in the most superficial way, she looked like she may be a reasonable fuck.
I encouraged a short discussion about what kind of format this group should take, wether we should meet weekly or monthly, where we would meet etc. The result being, once a month, at each person’s home we would listen to the host’s story or poem and then, pretending we knew what we were talking about, discuss it over tea and some sort of cake.
So as murmurs of approval and self-congratulation dissipated, all eyes fell upon me.
Suddenly I panicked. It was a internal panic, the kind you get when you realise you have locked yourself out and then suddenly realised you actually forgot to dress as well.
My stories were slightly erotic escapades, make that very pornographic exploits, hardcore pornography with a literary feel, maybe Henry Miller writing for Hustler.
There was no way I could possibly entertain these women with one of my bizarre creations.
‘Yes. Come on,’ they pleaded, ‘Yes read us one of your pieces.’
Murmurs of encouragement between dunking digestives and sipping of tea, the clinking of china, suddenly the room became overwhelmingly bright and my eyes began to burn.
I rummaged through a file looking for something I could get away with.
My eyes looked around the room and I began to experience that sinking feeling. The truth is I was not going to get away with anything. These women were old, they didn’t have to play the game anymore, they had lived long enough to know they could do what ever they wanted and get away with it whereas I couldn’t.
I pulled out a story.
‘Oh what’s it called,’ they all asked inquisitively.
‘It’s called,’ I hesitated, cleared my throat, ‘The Definitive Head Job.’ I lowered my head, not being able to bear looking at my audience’s embarrassment.
I began to read.
One by one the women left, sometimes two, three at a time until I was sitting with the young, not so attractive girl. She was smiling, and her lips were in full bloom.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

I'm being introduced to Richard Brandson through an english guy callled Chris Evans, they are talking to me about wealth creation and i am getting on fabulously with Mr. Branson who takes me on a tour of his sub tropical paradise in Florida, it has a monorail. Richard says 'You gotta think outside the Box'
I say 'Richard, i am so far outside the box i can't even see the freakin box.'
'Well that's yr problem.'
Evans is telling me how he made millions, lost it all, then made it again. He says its all in the head and then its doing.
Anyway the dream was so real, the conversation so real, i woke up and wrote it down.

Later in the day i saw my friend Jules and tell her my dream, she says her partner is finishing writing a book about people that think outside the box so far they can't see the box.
Amazing hey?

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

its been over a week since i last posted, somewhat of a long gap. meredith is the perfect assistant, it all went remarkably well and i surprised myself at actually producing some interesting results, the ritual seemed to work well, it's quite potent and i feel the current open. meredith is somewhat bemused about the whole experience but she is quite demostrative about the sense of commitment and shows a huge amount of enthusiasm as we begin the journey.
i've been listening to some tom waits, the guy in the newspaper shop burnt me a cd recorded live in some sleazy bar and its awesome, Toms amazing voice narrates a few tales and the band improvise around his drunk piano. i'm really enjoying listening to it in the car. Lou Reed recorded an album called 'take no prisoners' its the same kinda feel, amazing preformance with a hint of sleeze and grit, the two albums belong together.

anyway lou was in town this week for the sydney festival, preforming berlin completely live and theatrical, apparently it was amazing, he even stood in for ralph feines, who failed to turn up for a Beckett preformance, how amazing is that?
anyways love or loath lou (and i love him) he writes an amazing lyric and delivers it in style, listen to a song like ' Street Hassle'

A) waltzing matilda

Waltzing matilda whipped out her wallet
The sexy boy smiled in dismay
She took out four twenties cause she liked round figures
Everybodys a queen for a day
Oh, babe, Im on fire and you know how I admire your -
- body why dont we slip away
Although Im sure youre certain, its a rarity me flirtin
Sha-la-la-la, this way

Oh, sha-la-la-la-la, sha-la-la-la-la
Hey, baby, come on, lets slip away

Luscious and gorgeous, oh what a hunk of muscle
Call out the national guard
She creamed in her jeans as he picked up her means
From off of the formica topped bar
And cascading slowly, he lifted her wholly
And boldly out of this world
And despite peoples derision
Proved to be more than diversion
Sha-la-la-la, later on

And then sha-la-la-la-la, he entered her slowly
And showed her where he was coming from
And then sha-la-la-la-la, he made love to her gently
It was like shed never ever come
And then sha-la-la-la-la, sha-la-la-la-la
When the sun rose and he made to leave
You know, sha-la-la-la-la, sha-la-la-la-la
Neither one regretted a thing

B) street hassle

Hey, that cunts not breathing
I think shes had too much
Of something or other, hey, man, you know what I mean
I dont mean to scare you
But youre the one who came here
And youre the one whos gotta take her when you leave
Im not being smart
Or trying to be cold on my part
And Im not gonna wear my heart on my sleeve
But you know people get all emotional
And sometimes, man, they just dont act rational
They think theyre just on tv

Sha-la-la-la, man
Why dont you just slip her away

You know, Im glad that we met man
It really was nice talking
And I really wish that there was a little more time to speak
But you know it could be a hassle
Trying to explain myself to a police officer
About how it was that your old lady got herself stiffed
And its not like we could help
But there was nothing no one could do
And if there was, man, you know I would have been the first
But when someone turns that blue
Well, its a universal truth
And then you just know that bitch will never fuck again
By the way, thats really some bad shit
That you came to our place with
But you ought to be more careful around the little girls
Its either the best or its the worst
And since I dont have to choose
I guess I wont and I know this aint no way to treat a guest
But why dont you grab your old lady by the feet
And just lay her out on the darkened street
And by morning, shes just another hit and run
You know, some people got no choice
And they cant never find a voice
To talk with that they can even call their own
So the first thing that they see
That allows them the right to be
Why they follow it, you know, its called bad luck

C) slipaway

Believe me, that its just a lie
Thats what she tells her friends
cause the real song, the real song
Which she wont even admit to herself
Beat narrow heart, the song lots of people know
Its a painful song
Itll only say the truth
It lasts for sad songs
Penny for a wish
A wish wont make you a soldier
A pretty kiss or a pretty face
Cant have its way
The tramps like us who were born to play

Love is gone away
And theres no one here now
And theres nothing left to say
But, oh, how I miss him, baby
Oh, baby, come on and slip away
Come on, baby, why dont you slip away

Love is gone away
Took the rings off my fingers
And theres nothing left to say
But, oh how, oh how I need him, baby
Come on, baby, I need you baby
Oh, please dont slip away
I need your loving so bad, babe
Please dont slip away

and here's another fave called 'What's Good'

Life's like a mayonnaise soda
And life's like space without room
And life's like bacon and icecream
That's what life's like without you
Life's like forever becoming
But life's forever dealing in hurt
Now life's like death without living
That's what life's like without you
Life's like Sanskrit read to a pony
I see you in my mind's eye strangling on your tongue
What good is knowing such devotion
I've been around--I know what makes things run
What good is seeing eye chocolate
What good's a computerized nose
And what good is cancer in April
Why no good--no good at all
What good's a war without killing
What good is rain that falls up
What good's a disease that won't hurt you
Why no good, I guess, no good at all
What good are these thoughts that I'm thinking
It must be better not to be thinking at all
A styrofoam lover with emotions of concrete
No not much, not much at all
What good is life without living
What good's this lion that barks
You loved a life others throw away nightly
It's not fair, not fair at all
What's good?
Life's good--
But not fair at all

Yeah Lou reed and i go back a long way, 'waiting for the man' was one of the first songs i ever played and sang. Lou's been with me a long time, and when you hear Take No Prisnors'
I managed to catch him on the 'Blue Mask' tour in Brixton London, he was excellent, i'd loved to have seen the berlin shows but tix where sold out in seconds.

Friday, January 19, 2007

meredith bubbles flew up from Adelaide to play, it's nice having someone around mission control to hang out with, of course like all plans i developed things don't always run the way i expect, i thought we would be doing heaps of stuff but we seem to have settled into a nice routine, with intermittent adventures to the city, beach or cinema. meredith has also assisted me in a number of rituals, i use my small atrium where i cast my spells and invocations, she's slightly bemused but enthusiastic about being an assistant. Surprisingly she also accepts my neurotic need to keep my home clean and has even assited in the laborious task of wiping the foliage of my indoor plants with a damp cloth. sex has been incredible, she's creative and open and remarkably interested in experimental type of experiences providing there's an emotional commitment. given she lives in adalade and i sydney this may be a good starting point as i like my space and would suffocate in a costaphobic proximity. today we are going to do some photographs, so i am looking forwards to seeing how chameleonic she can present, better blow the dust of my camera.

i was at a friends Kane home, he had been pestering me for ages to play some of my songs to him which i did, he seemed enthused. I've been getting lots of texts from him asking to cover my songs. its a paradox becuase in the short time i spent with him he told me despite his spiritual inclination towards an indian saint called 'the hugging saint' he hates jews. the irony.

Friday, January 12, 2007

my old friend and soul freind lilly came over to mission control, shes been having some sort of meltdown, after slogging her guts out buying a home and raising her son, guiding him through his own tramua she is left with that sinking feeling where ya wonder, 'whats it all for.'
so i did some art theraphy with her, very basic, it was no session more like a crash course in speed theraphy. the result is she's a mermaid who is missing her tail. I've always known that she was a mermaid.
surfs dropped in temp. down from 23 to 15 in the space of a few hours, its crazy, maybe the icebergs floating passed new zealand are melting and a cold current is formed, i don't know but it was like swimming through ice cubes. i lost my last flipper, the shredder, which i loved immensely, in fact its my second pair and i am uncertain where i can get a new pair from as the dive shop closed down. I'll miss that baby.
meredith my Adelaide girl is wonderful, she texts me every day and calls, very thoughtful and really attractive, smart and despite our contrasting looks i think this may work. She's coming up to sydney for a week soon, i'm kinda excited about seeing her, its nice that she made the effort. i guess this week will be the week where we both understand if this has any potential to work seriously. i want her to get to know me a bit more cos lets face it, i'm a freakazoid.
well my work situation is developing into an interesting new level where the bitch from hell actually has started agreeing with me in our team meetings. its funny she's on the run but its to late the final confrontation is imminent.
good vs evil, im no longer sure whos good and whos evil but i gotta face the fear and do it anyway. its a huge step in confrontation with people that piss me off, personal development with an edge, fortunatly it will be mediated by some sort of official.

Monday, January 08, 2007

not much to report these days, quietly passing my time emmersed in the writing of aleister reynolds, hard sci fi writer who creates a brilliantly techologically advanced universe where everything seems to be falling apart at the seems, the melding plaugue, the alien threat, the strange dr. sylveste and his dad calvin, yeah 'revelation space' is the perefct read if you have down time and require some stimulation.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

the day is like quicksand, it starts with rain fall, monsoon as i drive through carnage highway eating my breath and listening to some one sing, 'Future Paradise' the haze from the rain, the heat and the fog, its a jungle out there as the road twists and turns and the silver machine travels through time, i'm safe in encapsulation, as the atmospheric conditions become treacherous, we follow the undulations, slip through the stream, in out artificial transportation and protection, the rivers of madness the trails of sadness, the bliss and the woe, another zen moment.
i take a reading, i get a fix, i'm surfing the highways and tripping the surface of things, ambient bass, harmony vibe, there's a reflection inside that comes from outside. all is one.
the silver corpusle follows the signs, and eventually the signs cease and i tune in on my radar, picking up alien frequency, i'm channelling some information i can't read, a minor interference pattern, i make some adjustments and fall through a little turbulance, eventually the end of the road is in sight, standstill. motions ceases, all the water in reverse centrafugal force, returns to its source and i am home.

Monday, January 01, 2007

There is a need of escapism, also laziness, it's easier to believe science will create a solution in the nick of time. It was A C Clarke who said there is yet to be proof that intelliegence is a survival trait and also a prevalent thantos desire among people of certain faiths, they want to see the world destroyed as then their deity like a bus comes to get them. The self/mass destruction is not a species thing, it is a programming thing, people are programmed to believe things, and it takes work to break the programming and rewrite it.

So far, therefore, as the public profession of magic has been one of the roads by which men have passed to supreme power, it has contributed to emancipate mankind from the thraldom of tradition and to elevate them into a larger, freer life, with a broader outlook on the world. This is no small service rendered to humanity. And when we remember further that in another direction magic has paved the way for science, we are forced to admit that if the black arts has done much evil, it has also been the source of much good; that if it is the child of error, it has been the mother of freedom and truth.

Sir James George Frazer (1854–1941). The Golden Bough. 1922.

Up at the crack o dawn, see the mirage of morning decend upon a sleepy seaside town, the elementary particles, positive ions haze the oceans calm surface, above a turmulous sky hangs omminously. I drive to babylon, empty roads, sunlight hits in angles, the early bird dog walkers, the healthy, meet with the all nighters, the 24 hour party people all seeking caffine stimulation in the single coffee shop. It's the first day of a new year, its the same day as yesterday, yesterday saddam hanged, today some one else will hang, a war will start but a war won't stop, a child will die and one will be born, a man will be beaten to a pulp becuase he don't follow the rules of another mans invisible friend, a border will change, money exchanges are made, transactions to sell bodies and souls. its not really a new year its the same old one.

what are my plans for the new year. I am going to win some $, and buy a house.