Paging Dr. David Icke...

Prosopometamorphopsia and facial hallucinations:

In July, 2011, a 52-year-old woman presented to our psychiatric outpatient clinic in The Hague with a life-long history of seeing people's faces change into dragon-like faces and hallucinating similar faces many times a day. She could perceive and recognise actual faces, but after several minutes they turned black, grew long, pointy ears and a protruding snout, and displayed a reptiloid skin and huge eyes in bright yellow, green, blue, or red.

She saw similar dragon-like faces drifting towards her many times a day from the walls, electrical sockets, or the computer screen, in both the presence and absence of face-like patterns, and at night she saw many dragon-like faces in the dark.

The woman suffered from prosopometamorphopsia, a psychiatric disorder that causes faces to appear distorted. Even within the context of the condition, the woman's case was rare in the specificity of her hallucinations.

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4 Responses:

    • Jane Drow says:

      That sort of looking in the mirror is an old occult technique.

      What is the difference between the past and the present? Of course there are many differences, but one difference is that occultism is becoming a popular science. Have you noticed?

      Does it work better than old fashioned occultism? Well, many people avoid the occult because they are not particularly interested in getting psychologically and/or spiritually squicked out and/or possibly coming in contact with actual "fantastic and monstrous beings" with 48% probability.

      But you see, none of it is real. Your brain is just making things up. So why not experiment? Why not vary parameters, optimize, record, write papers, compare notes? Graph it. Get a grant. Open the door and get published. It's not real. There is no such thing as actual "fantastic and monstrous beings. Nothing really bad can happen.

      Nothing is real. Everything is allowed. This is the religion. But you don't believe in religion, so do it for science. If you get sick in a way that medical science has never seen before and cannot cure, if you go insane... well, then it's time for someone else to experiment, vary parameters, optimize, graph, and write a paper about you...

      Nah, there's no such thing as demons. Not possible. We'll prove it in detail...

  1. Mark Welch says:

    (I'm going to guess that Jane Drow knows most of what I'm about to say; this is directed at everyone else.)

    The word "occult" simply means "hidden". Much of what is considered "occult" or hidden is hidden because the symbols, metaphors and lore involved in the work can be unsettling to people of majority faiths, enough to bring physical risk to the practitioners in most communities.

    Modern psychology owes a great deal to occultism, actually. Carl Jung, in particular, wrote books such as Seven Sermons to the Dead, and Psychology and Alchemy. Freud once cautioned Jung:

    “Once he said to me: we have to turn the theory of the unconscious into a dogma, to make it immovable. Why a dogma, I replied, since sooner or later truth will have to win out? Freud explained: We need a dam against the black tide of mud of occultism.” (from C.G. Jung Speaking, ed. by William McGuire, and R.F.C. Hull, 1978)

    Regardless of what models of magic to which one subscribes, working in it introduces risks. Even just using the language of the psychological model, ritual work can mess one up mentally and emotionally if not done with care. Think of the kind of precautions most people take with psychedelics: mindset, setting and preparation matter a lot, and people who have ungrounded drug experiences often end up worse off than before. Spiritual/ritual lineages are valuable because of the centuries/millennia of knowledge gained with the techniques/substances that the practitioners have worked with.

    I know quite a few occult practitioners, and the ones I know who are the most skilled approach it as a science: among other things, they keep meticulous notes, they share information with each other, and they are constantly curious and willing to learn new things, while at the same time respecting the lineages to which they have devoted themselves. The Esoteric Book Conference is a good place to meet quite a few of them and ask questions; I plan to attend again this year.

  2. Soupdragon says:

    aah, so that's why you added the 'herp derp' button.

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