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…a code without a key…

from basic banalities:

The London Psychogeographical Association (LPA) was born again a few years ago proudly proclaiming 35 years of no-existence. Itnewsletter it publishes includes constant references to druidic ley-lines, masonic influences in architecture and occult sources of power seen as a way of broadening the political critique of urban geography with the ‘occult’ implicit suggestion that there always is ‘something else’ behind the most banal aspect of life.

from Center for Tactical Magic’s “Applied Magic(k) – An Introduction”:

In the Western traditions of ritual magic(k) and occult practices there is often a “lust for results” that demands linearity in the form of cause-and-effect. In such cases, practitioners become ill-at-ease when they summon a demon to defeat racist presidents and no one shows up to take the job. Nearly every other expression of magic across the globe regards the magical act as a liminal space that appears during the performance. This is a zone of transformation; a place where the rules of everyday life are suspended and alternative realities can trickle in. In some cases, a shaman will perform a conjuring trick as a way of illustrating the zone of transformation. Thus, it is not the “trick” which is magic, but the performance/perception. The tricks are part of a performance that leads the audience to a mental state where the real magic can take place. Thus the shift occurs in the perception of the audience rather than in the hands of the shaman. The best magicians also recognize this dynamic among their own audiences and perform accordingly by designing and performing illusions and/or rituals that are relevant to people’s lives…

from Anne-Marie Schleiner’s “Dissolving the Magic Circle of Play: Lessons from Situationist Gaming”:

A promising tactic for the early Situationists was the unpredictable yet forceful potential of play — what anthropologist Victor Turner termed the “liminoid,” or the freeing and transformational, moments of play when the normal roles and rules of a community or society are relaxed. After these temporary situations “players” settle once more into fixed roles. The Situationists proposed to adopt this liminoid “subjunctive mood” (when anything can happen) into a more general approach, a way of doing and being in the everyday, in order to transform material life with ludic actions. As Debord remarked,

We must develop a systematic intervention based on the complex factors of two components in perpetual interaction: the material environment of life and the behaviors which it gives rise to and which radically transform it. Our action on behavior, linked with other desirable aspects of a revolution in mores, can be briefly defined as the invention of games of an essentially new type.

Situationist games do not respect the boundary between play and work, leisure and non-leisure, between “real life” and Huizinga’s “magic circle”, the separation from “normal space” that facilitates immersion in games and play. Situationist games are not sports and are not relegated to sports stadiums, arcades, or Playstation home entertainment set-ups. Situationist games bleed into the city, the workplace, the buyplace, the personal computer, the mobile phone, public and private transportation and communication, and into and inside escapist rule-based game environments themselves. In transgressing the “magic circle,” a Situationist gaming tactic attempts to give transformative potential not just to play but to “normal” life.

from CrimethInc’s “There is a Secret World Concealed Within this One”:

This world, the so-called “real world,” is just a front. Pull back the curtain and you’ll see the libraries are all filled with runaways writing novels, the highways are humming with escapees and sympathizers, all the receptionists and sensible mothers are straining at the leash for a chance to show how alive they still are. . . and all that talk of practicality and responsibility is just threats and bluffing to keep us from reaching out our hands to find that heaven lies in reach before us.

You can taste it in the shock and roar of a first, unexpected kiss, or in the blood in your mouth that instant after an accident when you realize you’re still alive. It blows in the wind you feel on the rooftops of a really reckless night of adventure. You hear it in the magic of your favorite songs, how they lift and transport you in ways that no science or psychology could ever account for. It might be you’ve seen evidence of it scratched into bathroom walls in a code without a key…

Revolution is simply the idea we could enter that secret world and never return; or, better, that we could burn away this one, to reveal the one beneath entirely.

Under the paving stones, the beach.

Let’s not change bosses. Let’s change life.

– May 1968 graffiti

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