Sonntag, 30. Mai 2010

A symphony of the elements-

Is what I experienced when I was strolling through town today (I like to walk around town on a Sunday because there are only a few people about): A strong, warm wind blew from the east carrying scents of the wide Pannonian grassland plain, bearing intimations of far-off Central Asian steppes. Although the sun was shinning piercingly, it was also raining in a light drizzle while I was treading the light-grey stone pavement of the boulevard. I was completely enveloped by that curious and fascinating interplay of the elements.
Strangely enough, the people I scarcely encountered along the way seemed to be quite oblivious to that grand concert of natural forces; in animalistic self-reflexivity they tended to their children, discussed plans of business or looked into shop-windows to decide what to buy or not to buy in the near future.
Seeing all this made me understand a bit more of the world…it was quite beautiful.

Helmut Berger

Interview m. H. Schmidt 1

Interview m. H. Schmidt 2

Nr. '3' :

Dienstag, 25. Mai 2010


When the weather is fair, I..

...sometimes like to take my satchel, put on some soft shoes and go out into the woods and meadows for a day. This is especially enjoyable on weekdays when there is no one else about.

(With me I take some book of verse or myth [last time e.g. From Ritual to Romance by Jessie L. Weston], small-folded paper and pen, a Swiss knife and a storm-proof cigarette-lighter, and other small items that are too prosaic to mention. For drink in ones flask, I’d recommend on this occasion either an old cognac, or (my preference) a mellower single malt, maybe a Knockando with a warm nut-and-berry-bouquet, an elegant, smooth Glenrothes or an elusive Rosebank.)

A lovely girl

From: Hel-sinki

A Child of Nature

My mother told me that, when I was very little, she used to carry me in long walks through the forest, and that she did that nearly every day through all the seasons. It is almost as if something had entered me, then, a longing for solitude, for the woods and meadows, some thing that whispered to me: 'I am not of this world.'

As soon as I could walk, I would run through silvery, chest-high grass under an orange sun while she would paint watercolours sitting on the crest of a nearby hillock. I'd play hide and seek with gigantic dark brown menhirs or encounter strangely freezing currents of air around old, abandoned watermills.

And a few summers later, I'd already prance through the Alpine woodlands of Salzburg where relatives owned a small patch of forest. Inside of it, there was nothing to mark the borders of property, continuously it spread over mountainsides and narrow, shadowy valleys that had never been inhabited by man. Crouched down next to a small brook, I'd listen to the water trickle and gurgle endlessly by, and then on climbing tours and hiking trips I'd incessantly invent spontaneous nonsense-verses and drive my step-father mad, savouring the helplessness of that oxymoronic, because academic, philosopher in the face of words and expressions without meaning but with higher sense: a primal, deep-rooted sense in an utterance of nature itself whose voice I had become.

p.s. much later my good Zen teacher, when seeing some applicants and pulling some customary unlearn-what-you’ve-learned-jokes on most, upon seeing me just said: Ah! you know. He saw that I had once been taught by Mother Nature, already- and consequently treated me much harsher than the others [but that’s a different tale]...

Donnerstag, 20. Mai 2010

Bow ties...?

Recently I'm honestly thinking about getting myself some bowties (well, for starters, I only had a monochromatic midnight blue one and a navy or light blue white-dotted one in mind). Bow ties are something of a rare phenomenon these days; they can be seen here and there in some fashion-shots but IRL, nada...I wonder how they'd fit me? Maybe not too bad cause in my wild, rambling days of (already) drunken and vigorous youth I sometimes used to wear a black one with cosi-detti smokings for evening wear and I thought that they did fit me quite well. Yet, to wear them in quotidian life, in broad daylight is another matter, maybe...?

Typhonian Tomes

I'm thinking of getting into Typhonian and qlippothic studies again, though I haven't decided yet.
Although those works are (quite illegally but ubiquitously) available on the net, I prefer the printed originals of Kenneth Grant's magico-poetical masterworks called the Typhonian Trilogies due to their hypersigilized, quasi fetish-like appeal. I'm still missing the authorized published versions of 'The Magical Revival' and 'Cults of the Shadow' from my collection, as can be seen in this old picture, infra.

Montag, 17. Mai 2010

A hangover in style:

(From Mr.Classic by J. Hackett)

Swiss Army Bicycle

With full gear (1947):

Lord Flashheart!


Some cultural historian once wrote that trees have taught the Germanic peoples how to stand straight and march in line. While that may have been a bit polemically exaggerated, it certainly does have a point. I do think that even today people of Middle and Northern Europe –and their cultural descendants elsewhere- share certain cultural traits that could be recurred to some kind of forest lore. Trees have not only given us shelter, have kept us warm with their leaves and the fuel that their wood provided for our fires, but also have given us culture: letters (the German Buchstabe [literally: beech-stick] means letter) as well as writing, books, prophecy, myth and oracle-magic (a future); yet also dreaminess, wisdom and the famed idealism. Trees teach us how to face life standing up straight, how to have pride in ourselves, but they also reveal and sway and again conceal things beyond our reach: the skies and the sun and beyond those- the stars and the ocean of night, and they sing of them with the voices of leaves.

I seem to remember that one of my favourite authors, J.R.R Tolkien, was especially fond of trees, too. Maybe in an essay about his mythopoetical theories that was attached to the story called 'Leaf by Niggle', he wrote something to the effect of: 'small-minded, mediocre persons cannot stand large trees, they cannot live next to them, cannot tolerate anything greater near them- so they cut them down.' Sadly, when I look into certain suburbs and modern gardens and homes (and minds!), I have to agree with him.

Kinski as Dr. Zuckerbrot

(From 'Buddy, Buddy'.)

Freitag, 14. Mai 2010

The Steyr Waffenrad (bicycle)

Wanting to buy a new bi-cycle, I was inspired by a man I saw in the city a couple of days ago. He was wearing a blazer, white trousers and a Panama hat which would have looked slightly foppish in this somehow charmingly provincial and rural town but because he rode a perfectly restored 1930s Waffenrad by Steyr, the predecessor of today’s arms-manufacturer Steyr-Mannlicher, he just looked great. Then, when I saw him, we still had sunny, clement weather here (now it’s raining and cold) and he was chatting with another bicycle-enthusiast just around the corner of the High Court for Administrative Law, as can be seen in this photograph:

Be that as it may, the bicycle I am looking for needn’t be a Steyr (it’s a bit of a fuss getting those spare parts since that company doesn’t produce bicycles any longer) but what I wouldn’t buy are so called Mountain-bikes with overly large tires or sports bikes (although I was presented one by Peugot when I was a child), nor anything with too much plastic or technique (too many gears etc.) attached to it. As pertaining the general aesthetic look of it, the Steyr Waffenrad is still my ideal, but my future acquisition needn’t be as fancy as the one that I saw the other day. It could be very heavily used, as long as it would be in working order, and it could also be by Puch, for example, or some other producer, even. Still, I think that I’ll have to look around a bit…

Weaving: I'm Mr Lila, too (reference to comment in last post)

I just logged in and saw a comment by my friend Lisa that led me to a picture of a fine actor wearing a (colour slightly distorted due to photo) seemingly violett/lila Trachten outfit. I just wore a Rajah-type tie of that colour today without knowing of that coincidence or synchronicity; or, in other terms: the purposeful imaginary interconnecting of seemingly chanceful events.

It is something that we poets do on a daily basis. The Indians have termed it 'weaving' or Tantra, some Persian mystics called it Suf, the weave or the stuff of which the world is made. ;) (pretty crazy, huh [of me to say this]...) .

Also today, I have again looked into that inspiring Hackett-book called Mr. Classic and came over this picture which reminded me of the fact that I wanted to buy a new bicycle.

Donnerstag, 13. Mai 2010

Peter Alexander shows us how to wear Trachten!

(From the film 'Saison in Salzburg').

Posted due to a special request from a friend in MI6...thanks for the interest, M.! :)

Dienstag, 11. Mai 2010

My patron-saint: Johannes Capistranus

Johannes, or Giovanni da Capestrano is my patron-saint. Living in the 15th century, he first studied law and became a judge before he got entangled in local wars in Italy which led him to a life of the spirit taking lessons in asceticism from Bernhard of Siena. He is called the 'soldier saint' and here you can see him standing on dead Turkish enemies upholding the banner of faith (that statue of him is on the outside of St. Stephens Cathedral in Vienna). Mehmed II, the 'second' founder of the Ottoman Empire, had conquered the old venerable city of Constantinople in 1453 and had overrun nearly all of Eastern Europe, then. Johannes, after having raised a crusade of a 40000 to counter the threat even- as a 70 year old- led his own battalion into battle and reconquered the city of Belgrade.

Montag, 10. Mai 2010

Be sensible!!, (That’s an order, you morons!)

Learn about your senses and their interplay! Touch, sight, taste- learn to heighten them from experience: taste the widest variety of foods and drink (even poisons), of smell and sound, school your aesthetic perception via style, art, bird-watching or hunting; learn to concentrate on a specific one and to shut out the others, mix them and study how they merge and reciprocate. The fruits of such practices can not be over-stated. Maybe you’ll even gain a certain kind of illumination that could serve as a stepping-stone for further studies but at the worst you’ll know more about the world you are living in, know more about yourself than before. (Esp. recommended for assassins, neophyte-mystics and art dealers.)

Yamato-damashi (cool)


The function of poetical truth

A poetical 'metaphor' (to use this term extensively) is of course not real in the scientific sense but it is also more than a mere symbol. If you cannot at least somehow immerse yourself in it- or project your imagination into it- as if it were real, then you won’t be able to use its full potential which partly is constituted of the communication and relation of things that are too complicated or intangible to be expressed in any other way. This characteristic it shares with mythology and also with the anecdote, the little story from ones own or anothers life.

Recently I have heard an interview with German-born physicist Hans-Peter Dürr (not to be confused with ethnologist Hans-Peter Duerr) who explained this higher function of poetry, myth and story very well when describing his cooperation with Werner Heisenberg in the field of particle/quantum physics.

When any of them would disagree with the other or when they would encounter difficulties or dead-ends in their research, they would sit themselves together and for example, Heisenberg would say something like: 'My problem with this or that (technicality) is like this:' (And then he would tell a story from his life), whereupon Dürr would reply: 'Ah now I see your point but then to me it feels additionally a bit like this:' (and here he would tell a little story), and so on. By this method they would, Dürr stated, know much better than by any other what their interlocutors’ reservations meant in the context of their research.

Free Cacofonix!

Cacofonix (in French: Assurancetourix) from the Asterix-comic-books is not only the bard and the poet of the village but also teaches its children. To me it makes very good sense that the important task of educating the youths is in the hands of an idealistic, dreamy free-thinker who imparts to his charges a deep-seated fascination with the beauty and the mysteries of the world.

Another interesting aspect of this character is that his disharmonious singing could symbolically stand for poetical and philosophical truth that the villagers can’t bear to hear. That is why he is gagged and bound in times of feast and celebration because then, truth may- for a time- be suspended.

The Traditional Latin Mass
Reverence, devotion and the beauty of Gregorian chant

The Church in the UK is in crisis –
collapsing numbers, closing parishes, an
ageing priest hood, lack of vocations.
Matters are made worse by the loss of the
young through faulty catechesis.
There are signs of hope as Rome attempts to
reimpose discipline and to encourage
devotion to the Most Holy Eucharist.
One of the most encouraging signs is the
rapid growth of the movement attached to
the Traditional Latin Rite of Mass (known
as the Extraordinary Form) and of the
priestly fraternities and monastic orders
devoted to spreading this rite. The average
age of their priests is astonishingly young.

I am and always will be Roman Catholic, and that’s my affair, but I have sworn that I will only rejoin mass and the Church when they will have rid themselves of all those modernists. I have never understood what these are whining about, anyway- as far as I'm concerned they could all join the Protestants! Then they [the priests] could marry, be super-worldly and modern (i.e. soon old hat) and celebrate wearing ugly, batik-printed jute-sacks, in concrete cubes with barren abstract interiors ('churches'), speak the plebeian languages of the day or attend yoga and Zen-lessons held by homoerotically charged Jesuit heretics who are dressed up in disgusting grey turtle-neck sweaters and crocs. [I have studied authentic Zen in Japan and can tell you those Jesuits of today are ignorant and worthless, also many of them are Masons]*

To me who has been born into that (RC) tradition and into European culture it applies that if religion and Christianity at all, then only in the form of Roman Catholicism (Anglican and the Orthodox Churches are ok, too, depending on ones birth-place)- anything else is absurd because too worldly too ugly and basically too unreligious.

* the Masonic ecumenical thinking actually stands behind those modernist pawns- namely that all religions allegedly 'are' the same and-God forbid!- if not, then they all have to be made the same, have to be reduced to their smallest common denominator.

Joh. Springer

Comfortable, checked shirts old and new:

Freitag, 7. Mai 2010

Marchesa Casati: 'une femme à mon goût...?'

“I want to be a living work of art!” exclaimed Luisa Casati (1881 – 1957), the woman who astounded Europe with her extravagant parties, played muse to many of the artists of the age, and burnt through a vast fortune, before ending her days in poverty in a London attic. She was more than twenty-five million US dollars in debt at the time of her death – surely a woman who knew how to party.

Luisa, the Marchesa Casati Stampa di Soncino (23 January 1881 – 1 June 1957) was an eccentric Italian heiress, muse, and patroness of the arts in early-20th-century Europe, [she] was born in Milan to a life of luxury. Luisa's father was of Austrian descent, while her mother was Italian and Austrian. Luisa's father was made a count by King Umberto I for his contributions to the cotton industry, which he largely controlled.

Mittwoch, 5. Mai 2010

Klaus Kinski

Wine recommendation

Now something for my Austrian friends: Wenn ihr zufällig gerade im Lande seids, dann kauft euch doch einige Kartons von diesem Wein (beim Hofer!, dt: Aldi), kostet nur 2.49 € oder so per Bottle, und ist wirklich nicht schlecht; übrigens: auch die Tasche im Hintergrund kann ich empfehlen, die gibts bei Tusting in England...lg, von Hannes.

Would the Emperor have approved...?

...of my readings? I'm not too sure...
(A random selection from my library. Books from top to bottom: Eliade: Schamanisums und archaische Ekstasetechnik, Schimmel: Mystische Dimension des Islam, Thesiger: The Life of My Choice, Heidegger: Unterwegs zur Sprache, Bonnett (Hg.): Kunst ohne Geschichte?, Alte Pinakothek (München), Kallendorf (ed. & transl.): Humanist Educational Treatises, Byrne: Mad World, Cannadine: Aspects of Aristocracy, Said: Orientalism, Heidegger: Vorträge und Aufsätze, (A printed-out text from the net about astrophysics), Belting (Hrsg.): Der zweite Blick, Alberti: Della Pittura, Safranski: Romantik, The National Gallery (London), Feyerabend: Naturphilosophie)