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Re: Hodson (Ex: Angels & Communication)

Sep 15, 1996 09:30 AM
by Drpsionic

The problem I have with Hodson is twofold.  First, I am turned off by the
tone of his approach to things, but that is a personal matter of taste and I
would never be so foolish as to expect anyone else to agree with me on it.
The second is far more serious.  One of the things we have learned about how
the brain functions is that the electrical activity inside it takes visual
forms.  So a piece of music, for example, will cause the optic nervous
system, not merely the optic nerves but that part of the brain that sees, to
have a visual experience.  This is easily provable by the fact that if one is
meditating and is disturbed by a sudden noise one sees all kinds of colors
for an instant.  In any event, these forms have been mapped to the point were
computers can be programmed to duplicate emotions by the visual forms they
produce.  Hodson, apparently, saw these forms and then externalized the
vision, in other words he saw them outside of himself rather than merely as
an internal light show.  Now this skill can be learned.  It is, in fact, the
visualization training that is so important in magick.  When it is
involuntary, however, as was clearly the case with Hodson, it is a symptom of
mental illness and in fact is part of the diagnoses of schizophrenia.
So with Hodson we have a problem because of the totally subjective nature of
his visions.  As far as his other clairvoyant work, some of it may be
valuable as anecdotal evidence, but the problem of repeatability still
bedevils us and will for some time.  That is why academic type
parapsychologists have gone to the statistical gobbledygook that makes their
work unreadable.
Now, to be fair, which is not something I enjoy because being unfair is so
much more fun, Hodson was part of a generation that was notoriously
uncritical in its thinking.  There was such a strong desire to believe in
something, anything, that the most preposterous claims were often taken on
face value, especially in the TS, sadly to say.  And at the time the peculiar
workings of the brain were not understood as they are today and we still are
only scratching the surface.
Hodson's problem may have been that he became so idolized that he believed
his own press, as it were, and lost the ability to question the reality of
his visions.  It may be that the only way to deal with such people is to
examine each action as an individual phenomenon and divorce it from any whole
in order to find out what was true and what was nonsense.  But hero-worship
does no good in any form of inquiry.  It only gets in the way and Hodson's
journal reveals some fundamentally questionable attitudes.
Clearly his comments about personal visits from the master Polidentus or
whatever-his-name-was does not cause any confidence in his other work.
Still, I will try, however hard it may be, to keep a little crack of my mind
open on this, and I look forward to seeing your material.
Who knows, I could be wrong.  It happened once in May of 1958 and might
happen again.

Chuck the Heretic

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