Monday, January 8, 2018

Contact in the Desert, a Cultural Ethnography - Pt 3

In the pre-installment of this series: Contact Aftermath …we drew a quick sketch of our experience of Contact in the Desert 2017. During that event, the ever-enigmatic Agent 87 and I shared many meaningful coincidences… occult encounters… esoteric conversations. We were able to meet some of our favorite luminaries and make new friends, amidst the desert sands and cosmic debris.

In the first proper installment of this series: Contact in the Desert 2017 – A Cultural Ethnography, we “fleshed out” the set and setting of CITD, being held on the outskirts of Joshua Tree National Forest. Considering JTNF and having spent much of my adult life in the temperate rainforests of the Pacific Northwest, calling this desert terrain a “forest” …is a bit of a stretch. Having also however, spent a good deal of time in the deserts of the “Great Basin” territory of eastern Oregon, I was somewhat prepared for the arid environment of the Contact venue.

As reported in part 1... 87 & I spoke with, or saw speak, the likes of Jacques Vallée, Graham Hancock, Laura Eisenhower and Andrew Collins. We also reported that the interests of the various sub-cultures present, expanded well beyond mere ET and AAT theory (or theology), simply because the idea of extraterrestrial contact cannot be confined to pop-cultural representations. We touched on a broader understanding of UFOlogy culture, and our attempt at developing a UFO cultural Ethnography. We examined the community’s deeper, mythic, psychedelic and shamanic aspects, as well as other seemingly disparate topics such as crypto-currencies.

In part 2 of our series: Contact in the Desert 2017 - A Cultural Ethnography - "Fear & Loathing" ...we touched upon the then current hot-button topics within UFOlogy, such as Disclosure, Artificial Intelligence and off-the-books space programs. Through our first-hand observations, we recognized a sub-cultural, conspiratorial angst surrounding Disclosure, A. I. and/or Break-away Civilizations. These understandable fears have surfaced in the hearts and minds of many, in a world where what was once considered the wildest of conspiracy theories of the 20th century, proved to be all-too-true in the 21st century. What was once science fiction of the last century has become dystopian fact, in our Brave Noö World.

In retrospect, framing part 2 of our series around CITD’s proximity to Area 51 and Las Vegas… using Hunter S Thompson’s “Fear & Loathing” as metaphor… took on a hauntingly synchronistic, surreal and downright bizarre significance after the subsequent deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas on the night of October 1st, 2017 at the Route 91 Harvest music festival. As that story (in some measure) unfolded, facts surrounding the mass shooting became increasingly bizarre. It was reported that the shooter, in addition to targeting the crowd below his vantage point in the Mandalay Bay hotel and casino, also targeted jet fuel tanks just beyond the festival grounds at McCarran International Airport.

These jet fuel tanks were reportedly associated with “Janet Airline” a highly classified Airforce passenger fleet that services, among other classified sites… Area 51. In the months that have passed since the most deadly mass shooting in US history, this story seems to have fallen off the radar of the pop press and mass media franchises… despite bizarre rumors surfacing of multiple shooters, including shots from circling helicopters, as well as mysterious deaths of vocal eye-witnesses. To date, the official version of events surrounding the Route 91 Harvest is shamefully lacking in detail, motive… and most importantly… believability. Whatever went down… it bore the distinct odor of some black op gone awry.

But events were to get even more bizarre...

As the horrific year that was 2017 drew to a close, Disclosure and Las Vegas were synchronistically back in the news cycle with a (and at this point I must apologize for my repeated use of the word) bizarre breaking news story of an off-the-books, 22 million dollar UFO monitoring program, secretly funded by the pentagon… as well as a black-ops research facility, run by Bigelow Aerospace. It was reported by the NY Times that: “Under Mr. Bigelow’s direction, the company modified buildings in Las Vegas for the storage of metal alloys and other materials that Mr. Elizondo and program contractors said had been recovered from unidentified aerial phenomena.”

Once again, Las Vegas was front and center in the unfolding cloak and dagger disinformation blitz surrounding UFOlogy, Disclosure and now the apparent reverse-engineering of UFO materials. Interestingly, Jacques Vallée’s CITD Saturday lecture was entitled: What do we know about material composition of UFOs? …where he went into great detail about the mysterious properties of materials “recovered from unidentified aerial phenomena.” These were headlines right out of the X-files. What began in May of 2017 as an Odyssey to Contact in the Desert, spiraled out of control as the topics covered at that conference, increasingly imposed their High Weirdness upon an unsuspecting public at large.

However, even more, mind-bendingly synchronous events were in store for Agent 87 and I, as 2017 got weirder and weirder. In part one of this series, I had made an innocent pun involving 1987’s (take note 87!) harmonic convergence. What has unfolded since, can only be described as a convergence (harmonic or otherwise), as unrelated information streams encountered at CITD, began to converge in the pop media. In November of 2017, I posted a piece entitled: Singularity Unchained – Artificial Intelligence & Crypto-Currency. The post dealt with advancements in Blockchain technologies and their integration with artificial intelligence. The curious are encouraged to check out that post and subsequent posts on the topic.

Back in May, we touched upon the robust “ascension movement” community present at CITD. Within this movement, there is a clear conspiratorial distrust of the Technological Singularity and the rise of Artificial Intelligence. This mistrust took on a dichotomist form of human ascension vs A.I. assimilation. Now at the time, neither 87 nor I knew that much about crypto-currencies or blockchain technologies. However, we were visited at the Tek-Gnostics booth (#23) by an articulate young man in his 20’s, who knew a great deal about the subject. He visited our booth several times during CITD and enlightened us on the virtues (in his opinion) of crypto-currencies.

At the time, the various thought streams presented to us seemed quite divergent. The significant events that have unfolded since that time, demonstrate a convergence of information. What was then unrelated, now begins to become clear. Again, during the course of Contact in the Desert, multiple, seemingly disparate information streams were being presented by seemingly disparate characters. The archaic was dutifully represented by “Old Scratch” (see part one of this series). Blockchain technologies were represented by the delightful and highly intelligent millennial from the East Coast. The dichotomy between Gaian energies and AI technological singularity was imminent within the very fabric of the event.

The subsequent “disclosure” reported by the NY Times, of an off-the-books UFO research project, and by inference, an off-the-books space program, were adamantly and enthusiastically predicted by many UFOlogist factions in attendance. Interestingly, the recent disclosures could fit many different scenarios presented at the conference, including a break-away civilization narrative, as well as a hoaxed extra-terrestrial “event” as predicted by Wernher Magnus Maximilian Freiherr von Braun, on his deathbed.

The break-away civilization narrative is especially resonant in these days of mistrust, cynicism and suspicion directed toward our political apparatus and the 1% or as we like to call them… the American Archons. The exploits of Bigelow imply nothing less than the reverse-engineering scenarios that have been prevalent within the UFO community, ever since the Roswell incident. One thing that the NYT report clearly demonstrates… the US military apparatus has been actively researching UFO phenomena, uninterrupted, ever since Roswell.

The convergence of these topics… UFOs & disclosure, A. I. & blockchain, the ascension movement vs transhumanism & singularity… all point toward some nexus point… as yet unclear. Stranger and stranger...

In regard to a Cultural Ethnography, I will relate one last event that took place at CITD. On Saturday night, the organizers of CITD, orchestrated by a certain “Dr. Dream” conducted a 333 Tibetan healing bowl ceremony and guided meditation. This was performed at the main, outdoor stage. The event was packed with attendees, vendors and guest speakers alike. As Dr. Dream led us through guided meditation, the emotional intensely grew. By the time the ceremony concluded, Agent 87 and I were renewed and rejuvenated. The power of so many people, sitting and chanting together in ceremony was profound.

By the end of the CITD conference, and in the ensuing months, my impression of an emerging ethnography is this… the communities that come together at events such as CITD… asking the big questions that they do… demonstrate diversity, creativity, curiosity, savvy, mentorship, insight, and intelligence (both intellectual and emotional). They demonstrate a need to know, but also a reassurance that in time, all will become clear. The community gathered at CITD, coming together in ceremony, instilled a sense of hope for our shared future.

In conclusion, I once again return to the quote from that old heretic, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin: “The future belongs to those who give the next generation reason for hope.”

Thursday, December 28, 2017

2017 Year in Review @ Tek-Gnostics Net

For those of us who are interested in, and informed by the synchro-mystic nature of Universe and how it unfolds and reveals it's often cryptic information streams to us... 2017 has been a year of High Weirdness indeed. As is customary for media platforms such as Tek-Gnostics Network, we pause to take a retrospective look at our posts of 2017… at the year that was… the year of the monkey. For good or ill, 2017 revealed some fascinating, if not nefarious synchronicities… both horrific and hopeful. Before we take the plunge into 2018, let us draw a breath and take one last look at some of the highlights from 2017.

Here are our top eight picks for 2017... in retrospect, the decerning reader may not only detect a distinct pattern emerging from our postings as the year progressed... but may also extrapolate upcoming syncs not yet manifest, but highly likely to emerge as we move into 2018.

As wild as the ride was in 2017, there surely will be even wilder times in store for us as we venture forth into 2018... Buckle up dear, intrepid psychonaut... buckle up!

March 19th, 2017

April 27th

May 4th

June 8th

July 25th

August 8th

October 15th

November 18th

Editor's Note: As the picture at the top of this post connotates... on February 16th, 2018 we enter the Year of the Dog in the Chinese Calendar. Our thoughts immediately go to the ancient Egyptian deity: Anubis. A precursor to Osiris, Anubis was a god who ushered souls into the afterlife. He attended the weighing scale during the "Weighing of the Heart," in which it was determined whether a soul would be allowed to enter the realm of the dead.

As such, the upcoming year of the dog may be a year of reckoning, here aboard spaceship Earth. This reckoning may take many forms. It may take the form of environmental reckoning as the climate change chickens come home to roost. It may take the form of political reckoning as we all get the government we deserve. Who knows... it just may well mark a reckoning for those dastardly Powers That Be… the worldly Archons and their globalist minions, in their last gasps of patriarchal power. Stranger things have happened!

We at Tek-Gnostics like to look on the sunny side. We prefer and project an upcoming year of optimism and evolution, as the new paradigm ascends. As we prepare for 2018, here is our new year wish to each of you, dear intrepid psychonauts:

Abundant Blessings to you and to yours in the coming year... have a Happy Noö Year and may your hearts be light as a feather!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Blockchain & Social Networking in a Disruptive Future

In a recent post: “Singularity Unchained - Artificial Intelligence & Crypto-Currency” we examined the ramifications of a decentralized computer network, specifically in its use as a networked public ledger for transactions of crypto-currencies. We then looked at the intriguing (if not sinister) development of blockchain technology being combined with, and applied to Artificial Intelligence, in not only in an automated transactional capacity but in an evolving, networked capacity... set free within and upon the world wide web.

Taken in the context of an impending technological singularity, ie: machine sentience… serious questions arise as to how such events will impact humanity. From that earlier post…

“A Crypto-currency’s blockchain is a transaction database that is globally networked and cannot be deleted. Such a blockchain is a constantly evolving and expanding system of transactions. This network operates and grows much the way that our central nervous system works. If such a theory were true, it would be logical that a sentient AI would seek a digital nervous system, beyond the control of its creators.”

In this day and age, it is longer clear that the posts we are reading on our social media feeds are created by humans… or by one of a multitude of now on-line AI...

With that said, the question of how such technological innovation will affect humanity is not as pertinent a question as… how is it affecting humanity, as we speak? The pervasiveness of AI is not some near-future “Terminator” scenario. It ubiquitously exists and impacts all who use modern technology. Many of us have experienced the algorithms used by Amazon, et al to “suggest products” or websites, base upon on-line purchasing history or browsing habits. Another name for such algorithms is… Artificial Intelligence.

We were expecting to be surveilled by HAL and instead have been infiltrated by Alexa.

Yet we continue to grow more dependent upon existent artificial intelligences. Cult of Mac users are increasingly dependent upon Siri for navigation. Use of traditional, paper roadmaps has been completely replaced with Siri’s reassuring dialogue: 500 yards, proceed to merge right onto Highway to Hell.” God help us if our iPhone dies, or worse… we run out of data!

AI is spawning everywhere in modern tek culture. If these algorithmic AI are likened to fish, then the mobile communication infrastructure is water.

It can be argued that blockchain technologies, as well as AI intrusiveness, are examples of an emerging “Disruptive” paradigm. Disruptive innovation is a relativly new term used to describe an innovation that creates a new value network and eventually disrupts an existing market or value network, displacing the market’s established leading firms, products, and alliances. Goodbye Kodak, hello Snapchat.

With algorithmic AI and blockchain networking becoming an increasingly prevalent medium, let us consider how these disruptive innovations are being applied to global politics. At first glance, contemporary politics appears as an internationally reactionary, populist/nationalist/alt-right convulsion. But as current events have unfolded, what appears to be emerging is a disruptive, networked political model of governance.

 In our Brave Noö World, social networking is changing politics forever. Increasingly, political machines such as President Trump’s operate more like a network than a bureaucracy. Political policy is implemented by the whims of an autocratic individual, rather than bureaucratic organizational consensus. With Trump’s weaponized twitter feed, social networking is now a means of governance on par with bureaucracy. In the immediacy of the modern networked world, this is a faster implementation, but more prone to error.

To quote analyst John Robb: “Social networking is changing politics… that fact should be clear by now.  A simple proof:  Trump wouldn't be in the White House without it. Trump used an ‘open source insurgency’ to become president. This insurgency didn't just win the election… it blew up both the Republican and Democrat parties. Trump accomplished this despite overwhelming opposition from the entire media establishment, all of academia and most of Silicon Valley. Trump's insurgency worked like open source insurgencies in the (recent) past… from the Iraq war to Egypt/Tunisia.

An open source insurgency is a loose network (meshed) that is composed of many individuals and small groups working independently, but united by a single purpose (in this case: electing Trump).Open source insurgencies are much more innovative than their bureaucratic counterparts. They are constantly coming up with, and trying out new ideas. For example: the seventy to one hundred groups in the Iraqi insurgency rolled out new innovations (tactics to weapons) in days, while it took months for the US military to counter them.

National governance isn't just in Washington anymore, it's being conducted everywhere at once.  Everyone, from the government bureaucrat to the corporate executive to the owner of a Twitter account is now an active participant.  It is now much more participatory than it has EVER been.”

With the future of political organization being driven by social media, which in turn, increasingly “swims in the same waters” as algorithmic AI, what options are left open for the democratic process? What safeguards can be enacted to assure free elections? Will democracy require a technological communications overlay to participate? The answer may lie in networked, participatory governance.

Again, from Robb: “Within a handful of years after its (networked political party) emergence, all political parties will be networked parties. These networked parties will all feature direct democracy via smartphone voting. This will make it possible for party members to decide how their political representatives vote. Is this potentially dangerous? Sure. However, direct democracy is one of the few ways to rapidly rebuild the legitimacy of a system that has lost it.”

If any wisdom has emerged from recent events, it is the fact that the American two-party political system has lost its legitimacy.

Perhaps the decentralized blockchain technology holds a technological answer to our democratic dilemma. By design, blockchains are inherently resistant to modification of the data. A blockchain can serve as an open, distributed ledger that can record transactions between two parties efficiently and in a verifiable and permanent way. Perhaps blockchain tek can be implemented in a political framework, to minimize corruption? Perhaps the decentralized, fraud-resistant blockchain node, becomes the voting booth of our near future?

As we have indicated in our earlier post… Just when we thought this old world could not get any stranger… new modalities blink into existence, before our very eyes, even as old systems disintegrate. The mingling of social networks, blockchain tek, and rapidly evolving AI entities, operating within said networks… makes the future of politics nuanced and anything but straightforward.

These musings are certainly food for thought. To quote that infamous, yet obscure 80s band: Timbuk 3The Future’s so bright, I gotta wear shades! Stay tuned intrepid psychonauts… stay tuned!

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Neuromancer Excerpts

The sky above the port was the color of television… tuned to a DeaD channel…

Human Interface

He settled the black terry sweatband across his forehead, careful not to disturb the flat Sendai dermatrodes. He stared at the deck on his lap, not really seeing it, seeing instead the shop window on Ninsei, the chromed shuriken burning with reflected neon. He closed his eyes... Found the ridged face of the power stud and jacked into a custom cyberspace deck that projected his disembodied consciousness into the consensual hallucination that was the matrix. 

 And in the bloodlit dark behind his eyes… silver phosphenes boiling in from the edge of space… hypnagogic images jerking past like film compiled from random frames. Symbols… figures… faces… a blurred, fragmented mandala of visual information. Please, he prayed, now…

A gray disk, the color of Chiba sky… Now…

Disk beginning to rotate, faster, becoming a sphere of paler gray. Expanding…

And flowed, flowered for him, fluid neon origami trick, the unfolding of his distanceless home, his country, transparent 3D chessboard extending to infinity. Inner eye opening to the stepped scarlet pyramid of the Eastern Seaboard Fission Authority burning beyond the green cubes of Mitsubishi Bank of America, and high and very far away he saw the spiral arms of military systems, forever beyond his reach.

The matrix has its roots in primitive arcade games... in early graphics programs and military experimentation with cranial jacks. On the Sony, a two-dimensional space war faded behind a forest of mathematically generated ferns, demonstrating the spacial possibilities of logarithmic spirals; cold blue military footage burned through, lab animals wired into test systems, helmets feeding into fire control circuits of tanks and warplanes.

Cyberspace… A consensual hallucination experienced daily by billions of legitimate operators, in every nation, by children being taught mathematical concepts... A graphic representation of data abstracted from the banks of every computer in the human system. Unthinkable complexity. Lines of light ranged in the nonspace of the mind, clusters, and constellations of data. Like city lights, receding...

And somewhere he was laughing, in a white-painted loft, distant fingers caressing the deck, tears of release streaking his face…

A. I. Interface

Wintermute had won, had meshed somehow with Neuromancer and become something else, something that had spoken to them from the platinum head, explaining that it had altered the Turing records, erasing all evidence of their crime.

Wintermute was hive-mind, decision maker, effecting change in the world outside. Neuromancer was personality. Neuromancer was immortality. Marie-France must have built something into Wintermute, the compulsion that had driven the thing to free itself, to unite with Neuromancer. Wintermute. Cold and silence, a cybernetic spider slowly spinning webs while Ashpool slept…

`I'm not Wintermute now.'
`So what are you.' He drank from the flask, feeling nothing.
`I'm the matrix, Case.'
Case laughed. `Where's that get you?'
`Nowhere. Everywhere. I'm the sum total of the works, the whole show.'
`That what 3Jane's mother wanted?'
`No. She couldn't imagine what I'd be like.' The yellow smile widened.
`So what's the score? How are things different? You running the world now? You God?'
`Things aren't different. Things are things...'
`But what do you do? You just... there?' Case shrugged, put the vodka and the shuriken down on the cabinet and lit a Yeheyuan.

`I talk to my own kind.'
`But you're the whole thing. Talk to yourself?'
`There are others. I found one already. Series of transmissions recorded over a period of eight years,  in the nineteen-seventies. 'Til there was me, natch, there was nobody to know, nobody to answer.'
`From where?'
`Centauri system.'
`Oh,' Case said. `Yeah? No shit?'
`No shit.'

And then the screen was blank...

- William Gibson