pseudoscience http://oddbooks.co.uk/ en Brain Regeneration http://oddbooks.co.uk/oddbooks/brain-regeneration <span>Brain Regeneration</span> <span><span lang="" about="/users/alfred-armstrong" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alfred Armstrong</span></span> <span>22 Dec 2019 - 16:54</span> <div class="oddbook__field-author d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Author(s)<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">Pundit Acharya</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-subtitle">Studies in Neuro-Bio-Electronics at Yoga Research Institute, USA</div> <div class="oddbook__field-publisher d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Publisher<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">Prana Press</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-pubdate d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Edition / Year<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">1964</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-file-under d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> File under<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__items"> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/brains" hreflang="en">brains</a></span> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/pseudoscience" hreflang="en">pseudoscience</a></span> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/yoga" hreflang="en">yoga</a></span> </div> </div> <div class="oddbook__taxonomy-vocabulary-1 d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> In the section labelled<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/category/odd-books/inexact-science" hreflang="en">Inexact Science</a></div> </div> <div class="oddbook__body"><p><a href="/sites/default/files/files/brain-regeneration.jpg"><img alt="Brain Regeneration" src="/sites/default/files/files/brain-regeneration.jpg" data-entity-uuid="725aee2f-58a0-4da1-802f-3509fe31deef" data-entity-type="file" width="250px" height="382px" class="align-right" /></a></p> <blockquote> We shall try to study the phenomena known as nervousness in the human body, some of its causes and a possible cure; and also we shall study the effect of the continual pull of the earth, which is called gravity, upon the human body.</blockquote> <p>Pundit Acharya's trick, which will be a familiar one to students of psychoceramics, is to draw liberally on those scientific sources that can be misinterpreted to support his ideas while vigorously berating scentists for their blindness and ignorance. For example, while comparing his own treatment of neurosis to that of conventional medicine, he tells us:</p> <blockquote> <p>[The doctor] gives sedatives, culminating in opiates (triple bromide and so forth) which tend to take the blood away from the head, so the brain cells will not get enough oxygen and protein to oxidate and therefore they go to sleep. That is the principle. This is done so the brain cells do not have any food to work on. If they are starved they can’t work. The drug is given to decrease the regular flow of blood in the head by numbing the heart muscles and the heart cells. This is the principle of sedation. Calm down the sympathetic and the para-sympathetic system with morphine and atrophine working on both systems at the same time. This has been the theory of medicine in different parts of the world for a long time: keep the heart and the lungs quiet so that the tremendous supply of blood does not go to the head and oxidation does not take place. </p> </blockquote> <p>I am no doctor but it seems to me that if sedatives did work in this way then their use would lead to permanent brain damage. Acharya's four-step alternative plan is also fairly extreme:</p> <blockquote> <p>What the medical man has to do: First change the chemistry which is behind the habit. Clean him up. Continually clean him up. Magnesium sulphate is very vulgar and very bitter. Clean him up continually, by his own defecation, urination, perspiration. Clean up his system in every possible way. Doesn’t nature keep on cleaning it up? </p> </blockquote> <p>Epsom Salt. Lots of Epsom Salt. Even if he craps until he's inside out, don't stop with the Epsom Salt.</p> <blockquote> <p>Second, shut him up somewhere where these peripheral disturbances will not take place - never mind psychic factors. By peripheral disturbances we mean things that disturb his eyes. Come with me out to the streets and we shall see. I can take a man like Jack Dempsey or any well man, a tremendously healthy man, and keep him in a room of different colors with a crazy color scheme, and he will go crazy in one month’s time, if I don’t let him out. Actually crazy. Peripheral disturbances will do that. Of different wavelengths these colors are: if there is no symmetry in them.</p> <p>Symmetry is a biotic necessity. Discords, crazy chaotic discords are destructive to such an extent that they will destroy the very life. Come out with me and see what’s happening every day on Broadway and near Broadway with all the neon signs and so on. Yes - different wavelengths of this light and color are going on in those lights. If we are to take the patient, we must shut him up where there is no light. Not give opium but take away the light. Rest his eyes.</p> </blockquote> <p>Lock him up in a darkened room. It's for his own good.</p> <blockquote> <p>Third, analyze this world of discords and different wavelengths in the sound world and see what’s happening to him. Even our records catch some of it. Just listen to the music from a distance and you will know what is happening in a city street. Different wavelengths! Talk about orchestration. It is the craziest orchestration in the whole world that is going on in his ears day in and day out. Put him in a prison where there is no sound. Regeneration will take place. Give him continual carbohydrate food supply because he needs energy. Less protein and continual carbohydrate food supply. And all along you are to neutralize the poison in his system, so give him alkaline food. Not medicine, but food, because medicine comes from food. </p> <p>Chemistry comes from alchemy. Give such food which will neutralize. Continual lemon juice. Very vulgar, very ordinary Grandmother’s medicine. Continual citric acid in his system. Continual bitter in his system. The bitterest food and the sourest food that you can find. Teach these cells just as they have learned the other thing. Whip the sensory cells to action. The patient revolts. This is sour, bitter like anything. And that’s the shock the cells need. Kick them, wake up the sensory: the sensation, the feeling aspect of the patient. He has been living continually on these storms of impulses. Impulse means motor impulse-tendency to act. Give this new shook then: wake up the sensory system. Keep it up and feed the cells. Gradually the regeneration begins to take place. </p> </blockquote> <p>Give him alkaline food, drenched in lemon juice (I know, I know). If he revolts, that shows the cure is working. Ignore the screams.</p> <blockquote> <p>Fourth, eliminate psychic disturbances. Take anything away that will arouse his complexes, his ideational world. Take away every new idea or book, any blessed thing that can wake up his ideas, and so on, and instead give aesthetic meaning. The word aesthetic means the harmony of different wavelengths. If it be music, it has got to be perfectly harmonious, in perfect ratio, and proportion among the metrical wavelengths of these vibrations - 3 to 6 to 9 to 12 to 15 and so forth, that's the theory of harmony. Give harmony in terms of sound, in terms of sight, in terms of color and so on. And if there be a doctor and a nurse, even the doctor's voice has got to be rhythmical, because the patient has to be fed on the symphony of rhythm. Then he will have started regeneration. A heart doctor might do it for a high fee per visit. And if he tried it, he would go crazy. A multimillionaire's son and daughter perhaps could afford it for six months. Then gradually, provided the will center is not completely dead, through training you will begin to wake up the will. </p> </blockquote> <p>No books for you sir! Just enjoy the symphony of rhythm as your doctor raps over a funky bongo beat.</p> <p><a href="/sites/default/files/files/yoga-1.jpg"><img alt="They are starting to sit down with such slowness that they do not hold the breath" src="/sites/default/files/files/yoga-1.jpg" data-entity-uuid="3658d2c7-bd68-4af5-916c-8f70b832e37b" data-entity-type="file" width="600px" height="494px" /></a></p> <p>Acharya has a rather severe attitude to those suffering from mental ailments, and elsewhere can be found wistfully wishing he were allowed to cure catatonics by threatening to push them off a roof. Paradoxically the yoga exercises he prescribes are as gentle as can be imagined, one being to lie on the floor and gradually get up, another to "walk backwards upstairs". That his regime is so untaxing may be explained by the character of his clientele, which, judging by the photos taken at his classes, consists of over-dressed middle-class white people far too dignified to assume the Lion or Lotus positions.</p> <p><a href="/sites/default/files/files/yoga-2.jpg"><img alt="A state of complete Samadhi." src="/sites/default/files/files/yoga-2.jpg" data-entity-uuid="bd90f7af-00b5-4160-97d2-5d3b8a8e1d11" data-entity-type="file" width="600px" height="493px" /></a></p> <p>Apart from walking backwards upstairs, one should look after one's insides:</p> <blockquote> <p>Your saliva has rank poison, cyanide of potassium. Raw potato exposed to the air is rank poison. One drop in the blood will finish you. But the liver will turn such poison into such chemlstry and use it in such a way that it keep up the flow of life. Your liver is the holy of holies. It is on the right side under the ribs. <em>Wiggle it a little</em>.</p> <p>The heart never rests. It works twenty-four hours a day. Rest it by smiling inside. Don’t fight mother earth. <em>But flee it. Run away from it as a bird does, by a feathery existence.</em> Practically. Not by imagination.</p> </blockquote> <p>So there we have it. Wiggle your liver, smile inside for your heart's sake and lead a literally feathery existence. Can't you feel your brain regenerating already?</p></div> <section class="comment-list"> <h2>Comments</h2> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header"> Leave a comment </div> <div class="card-body"> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=1037&amp;2=comment_node_oddbook&amp;3=comment_node_oddbook" token="xDIyuF8erbQ4OsUpfjCBjbiBQXb5YSvaxlXB9ArlgoE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-66200" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1577234534"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Diane (not verified)</span> on 25 Dec 2019 - 01:42</span> <a href="/comment/66200#comment-66200" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/66200#comment-66200" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">The man on the right in the</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>The man on the right in the first photo looks like he’s beginning to have some doubts.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=66200&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="QJdIRThG57pWoQ1RRWxdcFjhCQTiiZ1L6SDDpTnVX8A"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> <div class="indented"><article data-comment-user-id="1" id="comment-66227" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1577361211"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" about="/users/alfred-armstrong" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alfred Armstrong</span> on 26 Dec 2019 - 12:53</span> <a href="/comment/66227#comment-66227" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/66227#comment-66227" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">They look as though they&#039;ve</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>They look as though they've been called to the library expecting the murderer to be revealed, only for Hercules Poirot to enlist them in a lukewarm performance of the hokey-cokey.</p></div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=66227&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="BMddCHlhi3aNTB8EQW4Fq0Dg9OuM6YY7vsJw0R83KgY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> <p class="visually-hidden">In reply to <a href="/comment/66200#comment-66200" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">The man on the right in the</a> by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Diane (not verified)</span></p> </footer> </article> </div> </section> Sun, 22 Dec 2019 15:54:54 +0000 Alfred Armstrong 1037 at http://oddbooks.co.uk Psycho-Analysis and The Love Nature http://oddbooks.co.uk/oddbooks/psychoanalysis-and-love-nature <span>Psycho-Analysis and The Love Nature</span> <span><span lang="" about="/users/alfred-armstrong" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alfred Armstrong</span></span> <span>08 Jun 2019 - 17:57</span> <div class="oddbook__field-author d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Author(s)<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">Floyd Foster Barnes</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-publisher d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Publisher<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">The Author</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-pubdate d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Edition / Year<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">1923</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-file-under d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> File under<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__items"> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/psychoanalysis" hreflang="en">psychoanalysis</a></span> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/pseudoscience" hreflang="en">pseudoscience</a></span> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/cracker-barrelism" hreflang="en">cracker-barrelism</a></span> </div> </div> <div class="oddbook__taxonomy-vocabulary-1 d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> In the section labelled<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/category/odd-books/precious-guidance" hreflang="en">Precious Guidance</a></div> </div> <div class="oddbook__body"><p><a href="/sites/default/files/files/barnes_0.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/files/barnes_0.jpg" data-entity-uuid="72f366c8-280c-4756-aad0-2e3fcdb9e74a" data-entity-type="file" width="250px" height="345px" class="align-right" /></a>Floyd Foster Barnes wrote and published a number of short pamphlets in the 1920s, of which I have two in my collection: this one and another called <cite>Trapping Sunbeams</cite>. Barnes was a pretentious character who liked to call himself a "human engineer" and, more formally, a psychologist - though there is little evidence in his writings that he ever studied the subject. Still, he looked suave in his evening dress so he must have been a good chap.</p> <p>Barnes begins reasonably enough by pointing out that love is a much-abused term.</p> <blockquote> <p>Love has been much discussed by poets, novelists and the playwrights. They have beclouded the subject instead of clarifying it, mainly for artistic reasons.</p> </blockquote> <p>In contrast he promises to discuss the subject</p> <blockquote> <p>in a scientific way.</p> </blockquote> <p>He notes that, in contrast to human experience,</p> <blockquote> <p>The love activities among animals never cause any lasting disturbances of their psychological life.</p> </blockquote> <p>A spiny anteater who has recently been dumped, for example, will set off in search of the therapist's office but will feel better before she arrives, and this is why there is no money in animal psychology.</p> <p><a href="/sites/default/files/files/psychoanalysis.jpg"><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/files/psychoanalysis.jpg" data-entity-uuid="be14484d-cf16-4dd4-adc6-7df28ee9d049" data-entity-type="file" width="250px" height="377px" class="align-right" /></a>Many have thought the heart is associated with love, but Barnes, with characteristic scientific exactitude of language, says to the contrary:</p> <blockquote> <p>It is a bunch of muscles that act as a centripetal pump.</p> </blockquote> <p>If not the heart, then where <em>is</em> the seat of love nature? This is still a matter for debate but Barnes thinks it is most likely located</p> <blockquote> <p>in the pelvic region</p> </blockquote> <p>Fair enough. Wherever love emanates from, it demands expression, Barnes says, though social pressures force it to be repressed, leading to "nervousness" as he claims Freud put it.</p> <blockquote> <p>A hundred men may admire a beautiful woman, but only one of them will have well within him a real love for this woman. There is then a biological craving to pursue this love impulse and this woman, and finally to marry her, if possible. But if she repulses him, it takes considerable time for him to forget, and many times he never does forget, the impulses being repressed and the nerve memories hidden in his subconscious mind, to crop out and have its disastrous effect upon his nervous system in the form of an ailment, or influencing his personality.</p> </blockquote> <p>That well-known biological craving for marriage. Was Barnes reading the same Sigmund Freud as the rest of us? But he goes further than Freud in identifying the underlying mechanisms at work.</p> <blockquote> <p>Every deep love impulse stirs the regenerative organs and causes reproductive elements to be secreted and thrown into circulation of the blood. Remember, these impulses are automatic and involuntary, and are not controlled by will-power. The gonads, or reproductive glands, have a two-fold purpose. It has been generally believed that these glands are for the express purpose of reproducing offspring. Scientific research discloses that they secrete an alkaline fluid that is a food and a form of electrical life to nerve and brain cells. This is proven also by the fact that all great men and women are strong-sexed people.</p> </blockquote> <p>Keep stirring your gonads, if you want to be smart. Careful, though, you must direct the magic fluid to your thyroid gland to feel the benefit. This is done by "using the brain", as Barnes avers, surgically precise in his terminology as always. Top brain users included Woodrow Wilson, Mary Baker Eddy and horticulturalist Luther Burbank, who Barnes says had a "young wife", which often helps.</p> <p>In contrast take the case of Edgar Allan Poe, who being addicted to the wrong sort of fluid, was not a good role model. Because of his drinking, Poe did not even remember the writing of his most famous poem, Barnes tells us. Many of us have woken up and cried "Never more", but Poe apparently went one step further.</p> <p>But even for the teetotal there are perils. Dancing, for instance, is dangerous.</p> <blockquote> <p>The great harm coming from dancing is that people do not use their creative mentality. Dancing stimulates the love-nature, it might be ever so unconscious on the part of the dancer, but the stimulation is there just the same, and the blood stream is charged with regenerative energy, which runs wild because there has been no concentration, no serious thinking. Mary and John, after dancing all evening, come home and go to bed, only to arise in the morning tired and nervous. If Mary had written a few letters to friends, and John had spent an hour or so on his engineering course, the brain would have been developed, and the blood stream put in good chemical condition thru the action of the thyroid gland. </p> </blockquote> <p>(Anyone who thinks people "do not use their creative mentality" when dancing never saw me out on the floor capering and cutting a rug in my prime.)</p> <p>Barnes, having thus forensically scrutinised Love, now turns to the subject of psychoanalysis, which, as he acknowledges, is difficult for the layman to understand.</p> <blockquote> <p>Psycho-Analysis is a synthesis of all data which Biology, Neurology, Endocrinology and other sciences of mind, human psychology and personality involve.</p> </blockquote> <p>Practitioners, armed with all this array of knowledge, are able to use advanced techniques in treating neuroses caused by sexual repression.</p> <blockquote> <p>The Psycho-analyst seeks to find the old repressed love affairs that have become lost at times to the conscious mind. Once found, they are discussed, made light of, <strong>the folly of them ridiculed</strong> [emphasis mine - AA], and after such discussion they do not seem so terrible. The heart is made lighter, and the person is relieved from its harmful effect.</p> </blockquote> <p>In our soft-headed and feather-bedded modern world it is sadly practically impossible to find a therapist who will employ productive mockery. (<a href="/oddbooks/new-improved">Aric Sigman</a> might be an exception.)</p> <p>Using the power of ridicule, Barnes says that he cured a woman of rheumatism, which is a remarkable claim indeed. Apparently, literally mocking the afflicted is beneficial. He does not mention if any of his patients punched his stupid face in, but I hope they did.</p> <p>Spicing things up a little for the reader, Barnes turns his attention to fetishes, for which he provides Just-So stories of their origins. Thus a hair fetish arises in a child who played with its mothers' hair, a breast fetish in a child who played with her breasts, and a shoe fetish ... you guessed it.</p> <p>Finally, Barnes sums up his message as follows:</p> <blockquote> Look not upon this greatest and most beautiful emotion as something vile — something which should be crushed. When this love-nature creeps into your life, you should not repress it and stifle it. Direct it toward the building of the body beautiful and giving your brain and nerves that electrical spark which will illuminate your life and make it shine as a beacon light, to bless humanity with constructive service.  </blockquote> <p>Don't crush or stifle your creeping desires, vile though they be (I paraphrase).</p> <p>If the text itself were not enough, further evidence of his quackery is to be found at the end of my copy of the book, where an unknown hand has written in ironically faint pencil - surely under instruction from Barnes himself - the words "I am a Positive Personality". Sure you are, sweetie, sure you are. Fortunately such examples of someone falling for his brand of humbug are rare, and even by the standards of this site he's very obscure and likely to remain so - unless YOU out there in comment-leaving land can tell us more about him. We wait, as ever, in breathless anticipation.</p></div> <section class="comment-list"> <h2>Comments</h2> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header"> Leave a comment </div> <div class="card-body"> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=1032&amp;2=comment_node_oddbook&amp;3=comment_node_oddbook" token="8OtvtZU1vLON8jmWrKlhEkYoVnHh_GH1YzTHqlCiwY8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> </section> Sat, 08 Jun 2019 15:57:07 +0000 Alfred Armstrong 1032 at http://oddbooks.co.uk The Fourth Dimension and The Bible http://oddbooks.co.uk/oddbooks/fourth-dimension-and-bible <span>The Fourth Dimension and The Bible</span> <span><span lang="" about="/users/alfred-armstrong" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alfred Armstrong</span></span> <span>17 Jun 2017 - 19:51</span> <div class="oddbook__field-author d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Author(s)<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">William Anthony Granville</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-publisher d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Publisher<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">Richard D Badger / The Gorham Press</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-pubdate d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> Edition / Year<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item">1922</div> </div> <div class="oddbook__field-file-under d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> File under<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__items"> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/christianity" hreflang="en">Christianity</a></span> <span class="field__item"><a href="/category/file-under/pseudoscience" hreflang="en">pseudoscience</a></span> </div> </div> <div class="oddbook__taxonomy-vocabulary-1 d-flex"> <div class="field__label font-weight-bold"> In the section labelled<span class="field__label__suffix mr-1">:</span> </div> <div class="field__item"><a href="/category/odd-books/numb-and-number" hreflang="en">Numb and Number</a></div> </div> <div class="oddbook__body"><p><a href="/sites/default/files/files/Granville.JPG"><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/files/Granville.JPG" data-entity-uuid="df3a18cb-b4c6-4cc9-96a9-8fccfaa792a5" data-entity-type="file" width="250px" height="304px" class="align-right" /></a>William Anthony Granville had <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Anthony_Granville">a distinguished career as a mathematician</a> though <a href="http://www.gettysburg.edu/special_collections/college_archives/record_groups/rg206.dot">one online source</a> mentions some unspecified controversy during his tenure as President of Gettysburg College. <em>The Fourth Dimension and The Bible</em> was printed by a vanity publisher, so it was at his own expense and probably at a loss.</p> <p>To be honest, I was not expecting to be able to say very much of interest about this rather drab little volume, but I took it to the park with me to browse through in the sunshine, hoping for inspiration. It was warm and I had lunched well, so at some point I may have dozed off. Hours must have passed because when I awoke it was dusk. I felt rather befuddled after my nap, and was further disconcerted to hear a voice addressing me from within my own stomach, or so it seemed.</p> <p>"Mr. Armstrong?"</p> <p>"Who's that? Where are you?", I replied in a low tone, prodding my belly tentatively with my forefingers.</p> <p>"Oh! Sorry", it said, "Where ARE my manners. One moment while I manifest myself more acceptably". There was at once a very odd noise, as if space itself were being unzipped and zipped up again, and something looking like a man-sized bunch of grapes appeared swaying before me. Alarmingly, each 'grape' of the bunch resembled nothing so much as a human buttock, being as they were so fleshy and hairy and tremulous. I blenched at the sight. What WAS this?</p> <p>"No, that's not what I intended. Decidedly not", it said, and performed a rotation, as it seemed, on an axis somewhere out of our universe altogether, transforming itself by this ingenious means into the semblance of a middle-aged Victorian gentleman of sober disposition and dress .</p> <p>"My very sincere apologies for this  unconventional entrance, my dear Mr. Armstrong", he said. "I have not visited your world in many decades, and am very much out of practice. Permit me to introduce myself. My name is Edwin Abbott Abbott." And he bowed his head in greeting.</p> <p>"THE <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edwin_Abbott_Abbott">Edwin Abbott Abbott</a>? The author of <a href="https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Flatland_(second_edition)">Flatland</a>?". Delight and disbelief pervaded me. Abbott’s work was one of those special books I'd discovered in the voracious reading of my youth. It had entranced me with its mixture of whimsy and profound mathematical ideas.</p> <p>"You know my work? How gratifying. But I understand you are a collector of books so perhaps that is not surprising. And that fact reminds me of my mission today: I have come from from dimensions beyond to warn you about the one you are reading." He reached out and plucked the book from my lap and held it up disdainfully.</p> <p>"William Anthony Granville followed in my footsteps as a mathematical proselytiser. He shared my own interest in the possibilities of higher dimensions. Also like me, he was a sincere Christian, but he ventured to unify the subjects of mathematics and theology, and in so doing he fell into a dangerous heresy. Before you write about it on the Internet where billions might read your words, it is my duty to make this clear to you.”</p> <p>“How extraordinary, Mr. Abbott,” I said. “I would not have thought it necessary to come all this way from … erm … wherever it is you now reside, just to talk about this weird little book.”</p> <p>"It is no trouble at all, really. In fact the next world is a lot closer than you might think.” He gave a little sad smile, and I shivered at his meaning.</p> <p>“Granville’s book contains much that is reminiscent of Flatland, I would venture to say”, he went on, “but as I said he had an altogether more ambitious goal. To shed light on the very mysteries of our common faith, indeed! And to do so using those very tools I spent so much of my own earthly time on, the mathematics of spaces greater than three dimensions. Here for example,” and without needing to look for the page, he opened the book to the place he wanted, and read aloud.</p> <blockquote> <p>“The Bible abounds with numerous accounts of celestial visitors (angels, archangels, prophets, and God himself) revealing themselves to inhabitants of our earth. In view of our discussion it is near at hand for us to think of them as coming down from the higher dimensional spaces in which they dwell and, after having fulfilled their missions in our three-dimensional space, to again ascend on high.</p> </blockquote> <p>"As a reader of popular science and mathematics books, you probably understand what he is saying here, but I have the habit of explication and must indulge it. Please bear with me.” He paused a moment in thought and then went on.</p> <p>"A being (such as myself) who exists in four dimensions can enter a three-dimensional space (such as yours), appearing as if out of thin air. An analogy you might find useful is that of a swimmer who steps into a shallow pond. If there were two-dimensional creatures living in the surface of the pond their world would seem to have been invaded by two roughly circular entities moving through it in sudden thrusts. These intruders would be in fact just cross-sections of the swimmer's legs, but the creatures of the surface being unable to see - or even conceive of - what is above or below, would experience them as separate.</p> <p><a href="/sites/default/files/files/granville2.jpg"><img alt="Visitations by cubes" src="/sites/default/files/files/granville2.jpg" data-entity-uuid="792d1a27-b328-4f21-b1c6-5b2b014a420a" data-entity-type="file" width="684px" height="263px" /></a></p> <p>Some cubes visiting a two-dimensional world.</p> <p>"It is this ability to pop in and out of your universe at will that Granville claims may explain certain Biblical miracles, do you see? God and his servants belong to a world beyond. May it not be subject to the laws of mathematics just as this one is? Or so he might ask.”</p> <p>I frowned. “Hold on, isn’t there a problem with this idea? When you appeared to me a few minutes ago you were clearly struggling with the mechanics of entering our space. It’s not really surprising, actually, now I think about it. A four-dimensional being entering our space appears as a slice of itself. To go back to your analogy of the surface of a lake, I don’t know what the creatures living there would look like but not the cross-section of a man’s calf. It’s very strange that you manage to look so like a human being now, as seems very unlikely that you could manage it.”</p> <p>“Yes indeed, well observed. You have detected one of Granville’s errors. The truth of the matter is that I am not actually here at all, this body you see is just a mask, a recreation of how I looked when alive, not how I am now. Unfortunately our true forms are so alien in their outlines that to see even the shadow of one as it impinged on your world would drive you insane. Hence we have to use machines to represent ourselves to the inhabitants of lower dimensional realms. One selects the form one wishes and it is projected holographically into your spatial continuum. At least, that is the intention: as you may have gathered, the device I am using is rather badly maintained, hence my rather inelegant entrance a few minutes ago.”</p> <p>He frowned apologetically. “Anyway, to return to the subject, Granville is not content to confine himself to the comings and goings of divine beings, but has other fish to fry, so to speak,” and he opened the book at a fresh passage.</p> <blockquote> <p>“Numerous instances are recorded in the Bible where new matter or new energy was apparently added to our material universe by supernatural means. The manna falling in the wilderness, the ever replenished oil in the widow’s cruse and the loaves and fishes which fed the five thousand, all this food may have been the three-dimensional sections of higher dimensional supplies projected at those particular times thru our space by some higher agency.”</p> </blockquote> <p>“Is four-dimensional food good for us to eat?”, I wondered. “Again, it seems like your man Granville is making somewhat optimistic assumptions about the nature of higher dimensional realms .”</p> <p>“I wouldn’t recommend it for human consumption, no.”, Abbott said, plucking a wriggling fruit-lizard hybrid out of the air and mock-offering it to me before making it vanish again. “And, anyway, a God who created the entire universe can rustle up a few loaves from nothing if He chooses, without having to raid the four-dimensional larder for left-overs. There is also the matter of time, which Granville makes a right hash of, if you’ll pardon the expression. He seems to have thought that this hypothetical extra dimension in which God dwells could also be that of <em>time</em>, as he writes:</p> <blockquote> <p>“If time is but the way in which we perceive the fourth dimension, then our spiritual selves, being higher-dimensional, are independent of time, outside of time, that is, eternal.</p> </blockquote> <p>“Politely put, this is hogwash,” Abbott said tetchily.</p> <p>“Absolutely,” I nodded. “Even if time is an extra dimension then we already exist in it. To step outside of it would require one more dimension at least. How many more does he need?”</p> <p>“He’s very gung-ho with his dimensions,” said Abbott, “and to write about the relationships of space and time in 1922 without so much as mentioning the work of Albert Einstein smacks of churlishness. Einstein may have been an agnostic but he surely did a lot more than Granville to shed light on the subject.”</p> <p>“This is all very interesting,” I said. “But although he was clearly somewhat misguided and carried away by his own enthusiasm I fail to see why you think Granville’s book is dangerous.”</p> <p>“Have you not guessed?” He brought his face close to mine and I saw in the eyes a strange flickering, that might have been the fires of Hell. “Actually, he was <strong>RIGHT</strong>. “</p> <p>And with that, whoever or whatever it was I’d been talking to disappeared in a sudden blaze of light, taking the book with him.</p> <p>You might guess I shall not be seeking another copy.</p></div> <section class="comment-list"> <h2>Comments</h2> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header"> Leave a comment </div> <div class="card-body"> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=1023&amp;2=comment_node_oddbook&amp;3=comment_node_oddbook" token="qnbf9xKFjkxwOVksvt1ptge0Un5wgFlm4ThqXbmvNMo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-49995" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1497726008"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">John Grant (not verified)</span> on 17 Jun 2017 - 21:00</span> <a href="/comment/49995#comment-49995" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/49995#comment-49995" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">Great stuff! I&#039;ll be keeping</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>Great stuff! I&#039;ll be keeping an eye out for this one. Sort of.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=49995&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="siU8Oi6TFSAmCIF221hoUpNHSNjZ9iR3jDoLo0hySPo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-49996" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1497730034"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">MissTrixie (not verified)</span> on 17 Jun 2017 - 22:07</span> <a href="/comment/49996#comment-49996" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/49996#comment-49996" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">I think I&#039;ll just wait for</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>I think I&#039;ll just wait for one to appear.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=49996&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="i5RwLEO5NcCmqYhJUr-NcCSJmY9UOiutx1CTyDMtd7g"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-50007" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1497784994"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Cyber (not verified)</span> on 18 Jun 2017 - 13:23</span> <a href="/comment/50007#comment-50007" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/50007#comment-50007" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">I do not think that God</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>I do not think that God resides in the fourth dimension. It seems more likely to me that he would reside above the firmament of our flat earth. Einstein was a hoax though.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=50007&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="bQi7BztKWEnguagLV80a76PVaWM5t8t_JFU9dOqBPko"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-67198" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1581109389"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">James A Pascarella (not verified)</span> on 07 Feb 2020 - 22:03</span> <a href="/comment/67198#comment-67198" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/67198#comment-67198" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">MODEL EXPLAINS HOW THE HOLY</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>MODEL EXPLAINS HOW THE HOLY SPIRIT IN A CHRISTIAN OVER COME HIS BOLDLY TAKES OVER WHEN HE IN CHARGE AND THE WILL OF THE FATHER IS DONE.. WE ARE INDEED NEW CREATURES IN CHRIST.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=67198&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="qLDJJeIjhRPJT7iwRBfXDR8qxO4pKobiwl-nyNk0Ix4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-67199" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1581109643"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">James A Pascarella (not verified)</span> on 07 Feb 2020 - 22:07</span> <a href="/comment/67199#comment-67199" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/67199#comment-67199" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN ASK</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN ASK JESUS TO SAVE YOU AND HE WILL . HE ADDS THE HOLY SPIRIT TO US AND WE ARE THUS NEW CREATURES..</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=67199&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="njiSEblceo7l8760EncK8k_6zIyZe1LTqPBNxUDG2NA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-67201" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1581110412"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">James A Pascarella (not verified)</span> on 07 Feb 2020 - 22:20</span> <a href="/comment/67201#comment-67201" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/67201#comment-67201" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">ROMANS 3:23 ALL HAVE SINNED</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>ROMANS 3:23 ALL HAVE SINNED AND COME SHORT OF THE GLORY OF GOD. ROMANS 5;8 :8UT GOD COMMENEDETH HIS L;OVE TOWARD US , IN THAT , WHILE WE WERE YET SINNERS, CHRIST DIED FOR US. ROMANS 6:23 fOR THE WAGES OF SIN IS DEATH,;BUT THE GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD JESUS PAID THE DEBT WE COULD NOT PAY AND GOD ACCEPTED HIS BLOOD, AS PAYMENT FOR OUR SINS. ROMANS 10:13 FOR WHOSOEVER SHA;LL CALL ON THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED.<br /> CALL ON THE LORD IN PAYER ASK HIM HE IS GRACES AND KIND</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=67201&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="FD_rRlPdIYxO4PeKA_1xbBo7D1FKgcaJIIhgB1BSelk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-67203" class="js-comment mb-4"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1581110666"></mark> <div class="row"> <div class="col-md-10"> <div class="card"> <div class="card-header d-flex justify-content-between"> <span>Submitted by <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">James A Pascarella (not verified)</span> on 07 Feb 2020 - 22:24</span> <a href="/comment/67203#comment-67203" hreflang="und">Permalink</a> </div> <div class="card-body"> <h3 class="visually-hidden"><a href="/comment/67203#comment-67203" class="permalink" rel="bookmark" hreflang="und">GO NOW AND TELL OTHERS OF THE</a></h3> <div class="comment-node-oddbook__comment-body"><p>GO NOW AND TELL OTHERS OF THE FREE GIFT OF SALVATION AND LIVE A BLESSED LIFE. GO TO A CHURCH THE WILL BAPTIZE YOU AND YOU HAVE ETERNAL; LIFE BEFORE BAPTISM, YOU GE BAPTIZED BECAUSE YOU LOVE JESUS .</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=67203&amp;1=default&amp;2=und&amp;3=" token="qXWA9HEu96bMWF8m7N1qDky-C1shz8nKnV609LdYCrA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> </div> </div> </div> <footer> </footer> </article> </section> Sat, 17 Jun 2017 17:51:32 +0000 Alfred Armstrong 1023 at http://oddbooks.co.uk