Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Ay, there's the rub,
For in that sleep of death, what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,

Identity Theft

2 And Judith was left along in the tent, and Holofernes lying along upon his bed: for he was filled with wine. . . . 4 Then Judith, standing by his bed, said in her heart, O Lord God of all power, look at this present upon the works of mine hands for the exaltation of Jerusalem. 5 For now is the time to help thine inheritance, and to execute thine enterprizes to the destruction of the enemies which are risen against us. 6 Then she came to the pillar of the bed, which was at Holofernes' head, and took down his fauchion from thence, 7 And approached to his bed, and took hold of the hair of his head, and said, Strengthen me, O Lord God of Israel, this day. 8 And she smote twice upon his neck with all her might, and she took away his head from him. . . . 15 So she took the head out of the bag, and shewed it, and said unto them, behold the head of Holofernes, the chief captain of the army of Assur, and behold the canopy, wherein he did lie in his drunkenness; and the Lord hath smitten him by the hand of a woman. (Judith 13)

Isis created a magical serpent out of dust and Ra's spittle. She placed the serpent on the path that the sun god usually took when he was traveling by day, and the serpent bit him. Ra had power over all things, and so he ordered the poison to leave his body. However, as the serpent had been made from Ra's own spittle he was unable to cure himself. He called on Isis (who was already a great magician and healer). She told him that she could only heal him if she knew his secret name. Ra tried to fob her off with some of his lesser names, but eventually he relented and told her his true name. Isis immediately cured Ra, but he could not take back the power that he had granted her by telling her his true name and from that point on Isis was equal even to the sun god in power. (J. Hill)

"Kings should never give their Word."

She'll beat you if she's able


(Lew in Sky with the Queen of Diamonds)

Murder, She Wrote (Dea Ley)

Oedipus Rex (L. Harvey Oswald)

1963: "He teaches her what she can do . . ."

(A deal with God)

Flash Dance
(Note: insert image of Evey receiving her baptism here)

237 (wherein a deceased girl is recalled)

Dance of the Seven Veils

Ordo ab Chao

Michael: Since Shakespeare is pinging, I think of The Taming of the Shrew. The play is allegory for an alchemical rape - the forced capitulation of the Id by ego. It's all about the dowry - aka the money bin, grail, etc.

I dunno. On the one hand, I can see my subconscious needing a good smack down every now and then. She is terribly unruly. But on the other hand, once I've "been there", I see her side. I'd rather work with her, than tie her up and force her. She deserves my respect, my devotion, and even... my love.

Naturally, Heath Ledger played" Petruchio" in '10 Things I Hate About You'.

Leo=Heath, we've already seen him play every 'King David' role. Translating to Inception, Mal = Katherina, the Shrew that must be "tamed" or pacified. Kate, Kali, etc.

Kate also married the Lion King (William). Royal Wedding bells?

Poe's story 'The Fall of the House of Usher' (from now on: TFOTHOU) was about a brother and sister (Roderick and Madeline) who live in a big mansion and were both insane. Why? Because their family, for generations, was inbred: their parents were siblings, their parents' parents were siblings, and so on. Because they are both mentally and physically ill, they remain in the house at all times and are cut off from society. As the last scions of the Usher lineage, therefore, the only chance they have to continue the family is to reproduce together - to committ incest. This destiny, along with faulty genetics due to inbreeding, is what drives them both insane.


MacLeod's play and Waters's movie 'The House of Yes' (from now on THOY) presents a similar (but definitely not the exact same - like I said, it is a loose reflection) situation: two incestuous, insane siblings (Marty and Jackie O.) in a big house cut off from society (at least Jackie O. still is). . . .


In TFOTHOU, the house is the strongest symbol. The "house of Usher" is the house itself, but it is also the family line, as well as Roderick's mind. The house is deteriorating, crumbling, just like the family line and Roderick's mind. The windows of the house are likened to vacant eyes - specifically, Roderick's eyes, the windows to his similarly vacant soul. At the end of the story, he dies, and the house finally collapses and crumbles. How poetic (Poetic? Ha.)!

In THOY, the house is also a symbol of the family line, as they all live exclusively in it (except for Marty - even he, for the most part, lives there exclusively). More importantly, the house symbolizes Marty's mind. Notice at the beginning of the hurricane, Jackie O. puts Xs over the windows? These are like cartoon Xs over the dead man's eyes, letting us know from the beginning that Marty (as soon as we recognize him as the central character which the house symbolized) will die at the end. And how appropriate that Jackie O. puts the Xs on the windows, since she is the one who kills him. . . .

Also, interesting to me is that at the very end of the movie, after Jackie O. explains what happened (or did it? No one can be sure, but I believe it did.), we follow Lesley running away, and then where do we turn? The camera zooms directly into the front door of the house, entering darkness. HERE is the first time we really get to look inside Marty's mind! And what do we find? The truth: Marty provoked Jackie O., perhaps even seduced her, and maybe - just maybe! - drove her insane. (roguekingofnothing)

El: The characters of The House of Yes represent the Court Cards of the Tarot. Marty (= JFK) is the King of Wands (Yod), Jackie is the Queen of Cups (Heh), Anthony is the Knight of Swords (Vau), Lesly is the Page of Pantacles (Heh). The house is the Underworld; the mother (Magna Mater) compares the hurricane to the tornado that catapults them into Oz. Jackie and Marty are twins. Crazy Jackie, like Mal, wants to trap Marty in the house (Limbo, Grimmauld Place, etc.) forever. All Marty wants is to live a normal life in the daylight realm, with Lesly, but he can't do it. Jackie will have the King's head. Her darkness is the Mystery. Another Fall of the House of Usher.


In both Arrested Development and The Royal Tenenbaums, the light-haired sister-lover has been adopted--i.e., she comes from outside of the closed system (the house of darkness) in order to redeem it (thus "Aunt Steel-Breaker" and "Grace" overcome the Law).

"Rita Hayworth. Can you get her?"

“. . . Dumbledore kept that sister of his quiet for a long time!”

“Untrue!” wheezed Doge, “Absolutely untrue!” . . . “The reason Albus never spoke about Ariana,” began Elphias in a voice stiff with emotion, “is, I should have thought, quite clear. He was so devastated by her death—”

“Why did nobody ever see her, Elphias?” squawked Muriel, “Why did half of us never even know she existed, until they carried the coffin out of the house and held a funeral for her? Where was saintly Albus while Ariana was locked in the cellar? Off being brilliant at Hogwarts, and never mind what was going on in his own house!” . . .

“It destroyed her, what they did: She was never right again. She wouldn’t use magic, but she couldn’t get rid of it; it turned inward and drove her mad, it exploded out of her when she couldn’t control it, and at times she was strange and dangerous. But mostly she was sweet and scared and harmless.

“And my father went after the bastards that did it, ” said Aberforth, “and attacked them. And they locked him up in Azkaban for it. He never said why he’d done it, because the Ministry had known what Ariana had become, she’d have been locked up in St. Mungo’s for good. They’d have seen her as a serious threat to the International Statute of Secrecy, unbalanced like she was, with magic exploding out of her at moments when she couldn’t keep it in any longer.

“We had to keep her safe and quiet. We moved house, put it about she was ill, and my mother looked after her, and tried to keep her calm and happy.

“I was her favourite,” he said, and as he said it, a grubby schoolboy seemed to look out through Aberforth’s wrinkles and wrangled beard. “Not Albus, he was always up in his bedroom when he was home, reading his books and counting his prizes, keeping up with his correspondence with ‘the most notable magical names of the day, ’” Aberforth succored. “He didn’t want to be bothered with her. She liked me best. I could get her to eat when she wouldn’t do it for my mother, I could calm her down, when she was in one of her rages, and when she was quiet, she used to help me feed the goats.

“Then, when she was fourteen… See, I wasn’t there,” said Aberforth. “If I’d been there, I could have calmed her down. She had one of her rages, and my mother wasn’t as young as she was, and… it was an accident. Ariana couldn’t control it. But my mother was killed.” . . .

She pointed to the dark stone. Harry stooped down and saw, upon the frozen lichen-spotted granite, the words KENDRA DUMBLEDORE and, a short way below her dates of birth and death, AND HER DAUGHTER ARIANA. There was also a quotation:

Where you treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Kick

One method used to awaken from a dream within a dream is called a "kick", which is the sensation of falling, hitting water, or a sharp jolt that can startle the sleeper awake. It startles the dreamer out of their sleep.~The Inception Wiki

No, I Regret Nothing . . .

Inside joke: The song Non, je ne regrette rien is performed by Edith Piaf. Marion Cotillard who plays Mal in Inception won the oscar for Best Actress playing Edith Piaf in La Vie en rose. She beat out Ellen Page, who was nominated with her that same year (2007) for Juno. Ellen Page plays Ariadne in Inception

"To Making It Count"
(Ordo ab Chao)

The Kick

( . . . what's the catch?)

The Mask of God
Catwoman: You think this can last? There’s a storm coming, Mr. Wayne. You and your friends better batten down the hatches cause when it hits you’re all gonna wonder how you ever thought you could live so large and leave so little for the rest of us.

Bateman: I have all the characteristics of a human being: blood, flesh, skin, hair; but not a single, clear, identifiable emotion, except for greed and disgust. Something horrible is happening inside of me and I don't know why. My nightly bloodlust has overflown into my days. I feel lethal, on the verge of frenzy. I think my mask of sanity is about to slip.

Born with a weak heart

. . .

"You have a tomb in the middle of your house . . ."

(. . . framed?)

Inception: It's the dead wife again. Like her mythological forebear, Ereshkigal, Mal wants to trap her husband Dom Cobb (Osiris, the Corn God of the Underworld, played by Leonardo DiCaprio) in the dream world of the unconscious. Only Ariadne (Ellen Page, Juno) can heal the King.

Cobb's wife "died" when he implanted the thought that reality was not real. In other words, it was the seed of Doubt that made them question the Garden State and drew them into the Underworld. (And beware--this is the "inception" that is performed on the audience.)  But now that he's there there's no turning back; he has to Finish the Work.

Setting the Daughter on the throne of the Mother

"Whether Page or Princess/Prince, these particular face cards always represent someone who is young and fresh. In Tarot, a Page can be either male or female but are usually correlated to the Princess rather than the Prince."

The Kick

Dom's wife, i.e. his own subconscious, is convinced of this Maya, which is why she is trying to pull him back into Limbo, the real source of all things (the outer reflecting the inner); but he needs to come back to the surface. Only, he can't do that while the memory of the Dead Syzygy still haunts his landscape. At the end (after Ariadne-Juno kills her underworld Shadow) there is still the question about what is real (he being but a character in a movie), but the real point, Nolan says, is that he no longer cares; he has his children (homunculi).
And in watching Inception, I think I definitely saw something of Jungian archetypes in all of the characters who interact with Leonardo DiCaprio's, Dom Cobb, in the movie. So much so, in fact, that I actually think ::Spoiler alert:: that the entire film might actually just be Dom Cobb's dream and that all of the main characters in it were just different segments of himself that had to concoct an elaborate mission just so he could reach some level of catharsis within himself. When the mission was completed, he was finally able to confront his demons and he was granted the clarity to finally see his children's faces in the end because his guilt had finally been resolved amongst his archetypes. . . .

Ariadne/The Architect as The Anima Archetype
The Anima is the feminine side within a male (Whereas, the animus, would be the male side within a female) and she represents who a male truly is rather than who he presents himself as in reality, and in many ways, what that's what Ariadne represents for Dom. Out of all the other characters in the movie, she's the closest to being who he really is—note, all of the details he tells her are basically the same details he's telling us, too, with the audience being a part of who he is, as well, being that we're living inside his head while we watch the movie—and she's also an architect, which Dom once was too before his shadow became overbearing.

Think about it, it's Ariadne who goes with him into limbo when everyone else has to stay behind. She's the one who tries to pull him away from his darker side and get him to move on so he can be himself again. ("What If Inception Were Analyzed By Dream Experts?")

Cobb: Genuine inspiration, right? Now, in a dream, our mind continuously does this. We create and perceive our world simultaneously. Now, our mind does this so well that we don't even know it's happening.

Michael adds: Leonardo - "I'm king of the world!" tells Ariadne that she is the designer of the dream, and he is the subject. His mind "populates" the dream world.

Or we might say... impregnates it. What he is describing is the relationship between the dreaming mind and the conscious mind - Id and ego. That's why the ego is "male" and the subconscious "female". I'm realizing that all this religious symbolism about marriage  is really just a symbol for the proper relationship between the ego and the Id - the true alchemical wedding.

22 The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old.

23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.

24 When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water.

25 Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth:

26 While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.

27 When he prepared the heavens, I was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth:

28 When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep:

29 When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:

30 Then I was by him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him;

31 Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights were with the sons of men. (Proverbs 8)

The easiest way to access this interpretation is to examine the character of Mal, the wife of Dom Cobb. She represents Cobb's personal inspiration; the Greek kind of muse, not just the beautiful-girl kind. Young artists conceive a passion for their métier that is analogous to a love affair. (Maria Bustillos)

Leonardo DiCaprio even looks like Christopher Nolan. But Nolan the Demiurge is performing the Inception on himself (self-impregnation). He wanted to write a heist movie, but the Dead Girl (a treacherous muse) intervenes, as always. The last level? Shadow-Mal knows they're living in a movie.

According to DiCaprio, it is partially a retelling of Fellini's --another movie that is at once a movie about making a movie and the story of the director rediscovering his lost anima, represented by the lady of the spring, played by Claudia Cardinale. The Director/Demiurge builds a Tower (Pyramid) to reach the heavens; then he shoots himself in the head and ends the movie, dismantling the whole structure. Major Tom had to come back to earth. At the end of the film, his own Child-Self leads the circus procession.

The Magician (Demiurge) impresses his thoughts upon Maya, the goddess of illusions, who manifests them upon her board. Sic mundus creatus est. ASA NISI MASA = A NI MA.

The Kick

The Tree of Life is also a metaphor for filmmaking. Brad Pitt is Terrence Malick (note again that he's the projectionist in Fight Club); Jack is the audience--but the director is forced to participate in the mystery. Film as the Great Work. Director as Demiurge. Cinema as shared dream. Of course it's all happening in his head.

Hugo has the same plot as Inception (and so did Martin Scorsese's previous, Shutter Island). 

Georges  Méliès is Dom Cobb, the movie director. He used to create worlds ("dreams," as the film says) with his wife, his Muse, before everything went wrong. It was the War that did them in.
Georges Méliès: If you've ever wondered where your dreams come from, you look around. This is where they're made.

The station inspector is the Law, who lost his leg in the War (wounded King--all of these characters are the same person). He thinks that people can survive on their own. By fixing the automaton (Quasimodo, the half-made mechanical man), they Heal the King (Ben Kingsley)--he was left "unfinished" when Hugo's father, Jude Law (the Jewish Demiurge) died (paralleled by Vincent Price in Edward Scissorhands, again).
Hugo Cabret: Everything has a purpose, even machines. Clocks tell the time, trains take you places. They do what they're meant to do, like Monsieur Labisse. Maybe that's why broken machines make me so sad, they can't do what they're meant to do. Maybe it's the same with people. If you lose your purpose, it's like you're broken.
Isabelle: Like Papa Georges?
Hugo Cabret: Maybe we could fix him.

The Tree of Life

“Inception” did seem a lot like “Shutter Island.”

It did, didn’t it? Leonardo DiCaprio as a man with a dead wife who can’t tell the difference between reality and fantasy. You can even draw parallels as far back as “Titanic,” a movie about literally and figurative “letting go” of past loves. Either DiCaprio knows what kinds of characters he’s good at playing or he’s got some recurring issues to work out — probably both. (

A train of thought?

(Chris Myers)

"Let Mary inviolate be torn upon wheels . . ."

. . .

. . .

In the film Rushmore, Max Fischer (there's that "Fischer" again from Inception) is a playwright, i.e. a Demiurge (potter). Obviously Max is meant to be young Wes Anderson.

Between two pillars (the Girl with the Book)

His love interest is the Hogwarts Rushmore Academy teacher Rosemary Cross, the Rosy Cross, the High Priestess. Again, Max's mother is dead. Rosemary's husband drowned--"fear death by water," Osiris. (Rose and Jack?)

Max, being the Aspirant to the Goddess, heeds the Call to Adventure written in Rosemary's undersea voyages book.

Herman Blume (Bill Murray) is God, the Demiurge (a wealthy industrialist)--he's a bit lonely these days, after having been driven to Participate in the Mystery and experience the agony of division. It is he who will be at last reunited with the Shekinah, Rosemary Cross. Max is "too young" for Her, and must instead assist in healing the cosmic breach in the Godhead (with a healthy amount of Jacob-struggling-with-God along the way--they both want the same woman).

Max lives next to a graveyard . . .

First comes a long time of trial and torment on the edges of Death, when everything in Max's life goes wrong.
Max Fischer: [to Rosemary] I'm sorry, I just came by to thank you for WRECKING MY LIFE!

. . . and from Death and the Grave come the first signs of a new life

An omen?

As a reward for his efforts he gets the Asian (Assiah) girl archetype, the China Girl who secretly pines for him--Josie Packard, Cho Chang, Knives Chau, Cherita Chen et cetera ad infinitum.

"Will you marry me, Le-Chahn?"

Or, Apocalypse Now

The movie ends when he Finishes the Play and ends the war between spirit and matter through a union of the two (which is why Cobb must work for the Asian man to win his freedom). He does not vanquish his enemies, but brings over to his side their efficacy and strength. The story is bewilderingly universal.

The restoration (Heal the King)

(The lesson?)

"Now it's time to wake up."

Ed Wood, Scissorhands ("I like to dress in women's clothing.")
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