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Dr Spektor
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Just a reflection and a wondering.... Outlaw, Alchemy Moon and others seem to love the Sigil of Astaroth for some of their amazing items. I always wondered why.... is it just a cool looking sigil? (I wonder if Rick liked it as Asta ROTH! Smile)

The reason I wonder is that Astaroth appears to be from most sources derived from Astarte / Ishtar etc. - a feminine goddess of fertility etc. I found some references claiming Astaroth may be a separate entity but the vast majority of the literature supports that Astaroth is based on and derives from the goddess. Some claim Easter is a ***ization of Ashtar! There is in the past some strange transition where the goddesses that were worshipped suddenly got kicked out of the top spot and male gods took over.

I doubt it will happen, and likely its just I've been delving into mesopotamian research for a project (I hope some of you enjoy...stay tuned)... imagine a Sumerologist or similar says "Hohoho.... keep summoning those forces thinking its a guy and you likely will be in for a surprise! hohoho...." Or some Babylonologist says "Pardon me, but did the goddess get a sex reassignment?"

Just a funny wrinkle about how different entities over time are remade and so on - some of the Goetic Demons appear to have not a huge link to ancient gods and some do. Anyway, I wonder if it matters as a performer if you need to know that or not - likely its based on your character. I suppose if your character is more a cowboy type sorcerer who loves to whip off spells without understanding what they might do (and thus increase tension for the audience) - could work. If you claim you actually are an occult scholar... I think you run the risk of feeling phoney as well as being called out.... just like someone reading tarot cards - you can tell those who actually have some background knowledge on the meanings of the cards as well as some methods for their use versus the people dealing them into poker hands to hot women and saying "These cards tell me you are going to meet a handsome stranger and sleep with him... and that stranger is me!" or whatever.

Just makes me wonder about even my inner script of trying to get into the simulation mode of pretending its real trips me up when I have this knowledge... all my performances can't deviate too much from the base of currently accepted history etc. in case some one does challenge it. Also makes me wonder how many of us take the time to really dig deep into the use of props and understand all its meanings, or possible meanings, in the grand scheme of things. I'm thinking it might be cool in performance to summon or call upon Astaroth and end up with a female extra dimensional entity being summoned instead.... linking things to the wayyyyyyy back to the cradle of civilization. Another thread we were talking about "who has these things (props)" and we ended up discussing the creation process of our items and how we need to customize things to our personal styles... how many also make sure they do the research behind it?

Actually - I believe a lot on Spooky actually do - hence why I love the gang here! I think to be a Spooky type, you have to love stories, you have to love researching around your stories to make them rich, you have to love your items and settings etc. to bring them to life... a Spooky really doesn't like just taking something out of the box and just using it as the instructions describe.

Not sure where I'm going with it - but anyone want to join in feel free.

Likely I need to go to bed and get sleep.
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"
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HHHhhhmmm...Something,like having a final reveal of Jack,being a Jill ?

Too,soon ?


I'm all in for making them,Ladies!
"If you watch Godzilla backwards, it's about a big ass lizard who helps rebuild a half burnt-down city, then moonwalks back into the ocean"
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Quote:
On 2013-12-17 20:06, Dr Spektor wrote:
Just makes me wonder about even my inner script of trying to get into the simulation mode of pretending its real trips me up when I have this knowledge... all my performances can't deviate too much from the base of currently accepted history etc. in case some one does challenge it.

Are you talking about something like "Ipswich," where you're presenting a book that lists witch burnings despite the historical record that shows no such burnings ever took place during the Salem trials?
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Quote:

Actually - I believe a lot on Spooky actually do - hence why I love the gang here! I think to be a Spooky type, you have to love stories, you have to love researching around your stories to make them rich, you have to love your items and settings etc. to bring them to life... a Spooky really doesn't like just taking something out of the box and just using it as the instructions describe.



Being in Spooky made me a very good story teller and also a story crafter. I am glad to here, I'd learn so much so much.
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I always thought it was because of this interpretation...

To others, he teaches mathematical sciences and handicrafts, can make men invisible and lead them to hidden treasures, and answers every question formulated to him. He was also said to give to mortal beings the power over serpents. (copy paste from wiki)
Dr Spektor
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Quote:
On 2013-12-17 21:07, Mind Guerrilla wrote:


Quote:
On 2013-12-17 20:06, Dr Spektor wrote:
Just makes me wonder about even my inner script of trying to get into the simulation mode of pretending its real trips me up when I have this knowledge... all my performances can't deviate too much from the base of currently accepted history etc. in case some one does challenge it.

Are you talking about something like "Ipswich," where you're presenting a book that lists witch burnings despite the historical record that shows no such burnings ever took place during the Salem trials?



Hmmm I got to dig out my Ipswich - I think in the book the characters are hung, not burned... or escape! I believe Vic did an excellent job on it....

When I do find an item that has some weird jarring part - like the CV book modern language regarding sex in what is said to be an ancient tome, one can redesign the background story of the relic - or better to make it a mystery to yourself as well in the presentation i.e. "its an odd book....!" for example, if Ipswich did have burning in it - (I swear I remember they are hung!!!!) one can just call it and say "Take this bizarre book - its like a history from a parallel world... witches were burnt according to it... yet, other books state this never happened. What I find truly uncanny about this tome... is... maybe its contents are true and our history is wrong... I mean, there is something really odd about it. Sometimes I think its... well, I know you might think me...well.... like its haunted. I swear I can show you that something in it can influence you... there are times the I think even if witches were never burned in Salem - I should burn this book. Yet I can't... "

Etc. i.e. if it can't fit into the facts, then just call it an aberration and anomaly and then things are ok perhaps. Same with Astarte and Astraroth - I think it makes interesting dialogue so long as it doesn't derail the tension of the act of mystery you are unfolding.

***! I got to go find my Ipswich now!!!!

- Aside - yep, each of Solomon's demons are given powers and talents... but that doesn't stop the tracing back of where the name derives from etc... however, as mentioned, one or two sources claim Astaroth has absolutely nothing to do with Ashtoreth / Astatre / Ishtar... 'Its just a coincidence!!!" In Magic?!??!?!? For shame!
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Mind Guerrilla
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Quote:
On 2013-12-17 23:00, Dr Spektor wrote:

or better to make it a mystery to yourself as well in the presentation i.e. "its an odd book....!" for example, if Ipswich did have burning in it - (I swear I remember they are hung!!!!)... other books state this never happened. What I find truly uncanny about this tome... is... maybe its contents are true and our history is wrong...


That's pretty much the same idea I had- to suggest that the book may be evidence of a coverup and that now maybe we can conduct an experiment to help determine "what really happened."
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Quote:
On 2013-12-17 20:06, Dr Spektor wrote:...Just makes me wonder about even my inner script of trying to get into the simulation mode of pretending its real trips me up when I have this knowledge... all my performances can't deviate too much from the base of currently accepted history etc. in case some one does challenge it. Also makes me wonder how many of us take the time to really dig deep into the use of props and understand all its meanings, or possible meanings, in the grand scheme of things. I'm thinking it might be cool in performance to summon or call upon Astaroth and end up with a female extra dimensional entity being summoned instead.... linking things to the wayyyyyyy back to the cradle of civilization. Another thread we were talking about "who has these things (props)" and we ended up discussing the creation process of our items and how we need to customize things to our personal styles... how many also make sure they do the research behind it? ...



I know at least three people who do that kind of research...
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Been reading White's The Golden Bough have we, Dr. S.?

For those curious folk of you out there, its an interesting resource; albeit a bit outdated, you can overlook that for bizarre applications. If you are looking for a summary of ancient deities and their historic relationships; its one place to begin.

Considering Purim is one big day of parady, one should not be surprised that Ester is a devrivative of Astarte. (For a further confirmation, check out the Hebrew spellings!)

Getting back on topic, if there is one, I think researching the roots of a civilization (fiction or otherwise) can lead to the best source material for stories and the bizarre. Its mysterious, steeped in the ancient, forbidden, set in a time where deities and man are close, and magical power is concentrated. What fun!
A wise man's question contains half the answer. - Solomon ben Judah, Philosopher
Dr Spektor
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Well, the golden b and a lot of other things Smile

Now is this good or over the edge.... I just went to an exhibit on Mesopotamia at the royal Ontario museum.... I did pick up some new ideas but mostly everything there I knew in greater depth and many of the smaller artifacts on display I have replicas - that looking at the displays, I wondered how much was real versus replicas (why show the real stuff in case of damage ? Save it for the secret rooms and real scholars???) - heck, I have replicas of things they did not have... The best part was getting to see the large wall sections of carvings (that I cannot replicate easily nor do I have storage!!!! But there are simulationist tricks for that anyway) - I was feeling very in-a-Philip-k-dick world where I wondered if much on display was truly genuine or just a. Mixture - some artifacts are labelled replicas there.... Some appeared to be indicated they were genuine, the vast majority was not labelled either way....

So out of the ramble - the point of this post - I think museums may use semi-trickery like good bizarre magicians. I know my own little collection blends magical replicas, reproductions and genuine artifacts....

If you are like me - I bet you all have a plethora of objects in your sanctum sanctorums that you have a complete backstory - anything picked up can become an hour or evenings conversation piece....

Aside: yes, pazuzu figurine heads were there too - and I didn't have replicas of them - hadn't seen these versions - (I have other versions) - but they were so cute I think that is another project - little pazuzzim Smile hee hee

Aside: not one mention of Tiamat in the entire exhibit - very sad indeed.

Some interesting things for exploration

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Travels_In_Hyperreality

And

http://kk.org/thetechnium/archives/2008/01/historicity.php
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http://archive.archaeology.org/online/fe......ara.html

There are some fakes in museums, even if curators and experts believe them to be the real McCoy. The Tiara of Saitaphernes, acquired by the Louvre in 1896, comes immediately to my mind. I strongly recommend the reading of "FAKE? The Art of Deception" published by the British Museum.
But, as a fake, the Tiara is still a very interesting item.

I'm working most of the time for people who know a lot about the various subject I'm speaking about. If I show them a fake Egyptian antique scarab as an authentic one, well it will immediately destroy the suspension of disbelieve, my show and my credibility as a Curator. It doesn't mean that I ain't using fakes, but that's another story. If I use a replica, well it must be presented as such. If I use a fake, you're challenged to prove me that's a fake. My key word is: suspension of disbelieve. If I used one of the Doppleganger books, I probably won't focus on the books, even if the quality of the gimmicks seems top notch.

Historicity is also a key word as it creates interest for the audience. Remember the key of the Titanic that sold for 90000£...
A museum is supposed to have such items.
In fact, 5 years before the movie Titanic was a hit, I bought several objects about the wreck from a collector: there were books, pamphlets, a 1914 copy of Futility and a White Star flag. I didn't pay much for those, as no one was interested in the Titanic. The flag has a curious story: a woman going on a lifeboat was freezing and asked for a blanked. The steward didn't have the time to search for one but had access to the flags of the boat and offered her one of them as a blanked. She survived the shipwreck and kept the flag as a souvenir. Is the story true? I don't know. Is this a real flag from the White Star around 1912, the answer is yes. I asked a specialist to compare with others...
Can I do something interesting from that? Sure.

Image



Oh yes, there's an original Mesopotamian head of Pazuzu t the Surnateum, but it's not as impressive as the one at the British Museum... Smile
Dr Spektor
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Christian, you are one of the heroes of our field Smile

Indeed, on the dopps thread I was posting too more anchoring the backstory of acquisition of them into reality and avoiding any claims of exactly what they were.... The prof gives in the manual an excellent background for each book as well which I think is key to our discussion here - knowing this info is crucial if you will claim some knowledge of these items. If an expert comes along and says "this hounds book is not like my own original!" We can resort to plans as outlined above re: really? I got it from the witchcraft collection - the fellow that Sotheby's had a giant auction on .... All I know for sure is this background.... But (see my improv on Ipswich) - or, get into the ok' club Dumas/ ninth gate dodge of multiple version of the same book for the purpose of something mysterious Smile

Glad you have a pazuzu head! One thing I found out recently is that although he can be a naughty spirit and cause lots of bad things - his head was used also as a magical protection device against worse evil demons, especially the one that could cause miscarriage! Guess he was a heroic little fellow in a relative sense. I have a rep statue of him standing with his right hand raised - now I picture the pose as "hello! Nice to meet you! Please don't let let me be misunderstood (and then he breaks into the song)"

One day I hope I will be in your neck of the woods to visit your amazing collection!
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Dr Spektor
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Speaking of the ninth gate - there are cool themes in there too - 3 books, which one is genuine? None? All? For those who haven't seen the film, don't read further as spoiler alert.....

http://www.yourprops.com/movieprops/orig......-2-1.jpg

Indeed, the funny thing in the film is the pursuit of trying to authenticate a book and one issue that turns up is it's more some of the parts of the books that are genuine or not... And trying to figure out what. Is what - the ceniza brothers play a key role (and you will note a the little angel with arrows in engraving 2 has their face) - note also there are 2 brothers - ties into the duality and choices of which way you enter the gates etc.... And the word ceniza seems to translate to "ashes" as in reduce to ashes... Which happens to Balkan for following their fraudulent path Smile - although there are many ugh moments in the film - overall there is a lot of cool underpinnings to gnostic and occult presentations there.... And great for any of our performance books IMHO

Interesting read:
http://davidjrodger.wordpress.com/2011/0......e-movie/
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Arturo Pérez-Reverte's book is amazing too.
"Disbelief in magic can force a poor soul into believing in government and business."
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Speaking about gimmicks: it's not because you use an expensive gimmick (or item), that it must be the focal point of the routine.
sir Arthur Conan Doyle was well-known for his involvment in the spiritualist movement and the SPR. It could make sense to use one of his books as part as an experiment in mediumship. The gimmick ain't necessary to be the main item.
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Agreed - in fact, my rule of thumb is to always make the object that can be examined with no gimmicks etc. be the focal point Smile - One of my favourite routines with a spirit bell is having a skeletal hand ring it.... but all heat is on the hand, with many convincers that it is the hand - with every step the method is not the hand itself... hee hee. Like the whispering Buddha, a classic, the Buddha should not have an MP3 player in it - the effect works through proper language skills, audience management and suggestion. That is why one can have a whispering Cthulhu idol, whispering Ushapti, whispering whatever...and that whatever can a great focal point because what you can do with it is make sure its chosen not because its gimmicked - but it is so interesting for its own ascetic / historic / mythologic / etc. value. I want people to examine the focal objects - as besides the effects, just having a wonderful discussion around history, archeology, mythology, and so on is quite engaging and entertaining for many.

In fact, I was trying to start collecting ephermia and other items for each Dopp book that are genuine to give it a stronger feel. Kind of like making a cologne or perfume where you have a main essence but require others to bring it and frame it properly. However, if there is a jarring element that does not fit, it ruins the entire batch!

As for the book the Club Dumas - indeed it is amazing - and it gets back to one of the rambling concepts from the original post - the book was adapted to a film - but the film has changed quite a few elements creating its own unique version... kind of how Astarte becomes an Astaroth - the Club Dumas and the film the Ninth gate have very different feels, different scenes, and share some common bonds. As for the link I posted where the fellow analyzes each gate, not sure if Arturo planed that or not (in reading around his creation of the story, somewhat but not anywhere to that detail...) - e.g. the visuals of the Cenza brothers looking like the little angel with arrows was a visual created in the film to indicate certain things. Thus, each is its own work with a lineage... hence also how I can now watch a film then read the book or read a book then see the film and not worry too much about one ruining the other.

Aside: I am biased, but I feel this thread hearkens back to the days when in Spooky we used to talk more about these concepts and ideas around performances versus specific products... I'm liking it... thank you Curator, Ma'at (hee hee), Yitzchak, Tom, Zoop, Gary and Piyuyu* for pitching in. Feels good!

*Pazuzu's cousin?
Aside: Pazuzu theme song (replace the one word human with ancient mesopotamian spirit):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCUmSijiWxA
He is still trying to live down all the brand damage from the film The Exorcist!
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I told you before that a key from the Titanic was sold for 90000£.

Image


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/north......8300.stm

Quote:
Titanic key is sold for £90,000

The key to the crow's nest binoculars store on Titanic
A tiny key that might have helped prevent the Belfast-built Titanic sinking has fetched £90,000 at auction.
The key, with the tag "Crows Nest Telephone Titanic" opened the binoculars store, but was not on the ship when it sailed from Southampton.

It was in the pocket of an officer transferred off the vessel days before its maiden voyage. He forgot to hand it to his replacement as he left.

As a result lookouts had to rely on the naked eye.
Titanic sank on her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York on 15 April 1912 with the loss of 1,522 lives.

Auctioneer Henry Aldridge said the key was sold to an anonymous telephone bidder who received applause as the hammer went down.



The Titanic sank on her maiden voyage in April 1912
He said bidding for the key at the sale in Devizes, Wiltshire, was fierce.

"We had several telephone bidders as well as people in the auction room and the gentleman who was successful was very happy.

"But I can tell you the man he outbid was not, he was very disappointed."

Other items in the sale included a rare launch ticket from Belfast which fetched £32,000 and a postcard sent home by a passenger on-board which sold for £17,000.

Second officer David Blair held the key during the short journey from Belfast, where Titanic was built, to the south coast.

One of the lookouts on the Titanic told an inquiry into the sinking that with the binoculars the Titanic might have been able to dodge the iceberg.

On the difference the binoculars might have made, lookout Fred Fleet said: "Well, enough to get out of the way."

Mr Blair was disappointed to be moved off the ship at Southampton, but the transfer saved his life. He kept the key as a memento.



Historicity again.
The key wasn't found on the wreck, till it sold for that huge sum of money.
So, how can someone pay so much money for an insignifiant object if the suspension of disbelieve wasn't that important? How did the auctioneer prove that the key is the real thing?
If one can use the same approach to his own rare item, there's no doubt that he will succeed in the first step of the creation of his story.
- Did the officer wrote a letter at that time about the story?*
- Do we have similar keys from other boats from the White Star Line (Olympic, Gigantic...)
- Why didn't any other officer aboard break the binocular box to watch the icebergs in a very dangerous area?
If you have to sell such an item, what will be your approach?

*
Quote:
He wrote of his disappointment in a postcard he sent to his sister-in-law days before the Titanic left Southampton. In the card, which is also up for auction, he wrote: "Am afraid I shall have to step out to make room for chief officer of the Olympic.


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1......nic.html
Dr Spektor
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Very interesting!
Here we have some things to go along with the Titanic Key:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Titanic-Crows-Ne......70016690

https://www.etsy.com/shop/historicfind/s......_leftnav

and so on....

I like the premise you proposed re: if you had to sell the item, creating a great approach!

Made me also think about being honest too with replicas as part of the presentation such as "Here is the ancient game of Ur. It is a replica - however, I constructed it painstakingly from photographs from the true recovered artifacts, historical documents, and ancient texts. I then followed (showing old rotting tome) the rituals contained within to consecrate it to the gods... I bathed each of the dice in a sanctification ceremony. Why? you ask why? To prepare the object for a scientific experiment into investigating the ancient legend of X Y Z...."

Now, I figure, its a blend of real and replica but you acknowledge the replica portion in this case which disarms the resistance if you tried to pass it off as real - just an option. There will be cases based on the presentation you want to pass of the replica as "real" such as if you wanted to claim an ancient Sumerian demon was locked in a small jar... it might be prudent to have the jar be ancient (or I suppose you could have it in a stainless steel alarmingly new vault - saying you caught the extradminesional entity in a magnetic pentagram beam and put it into this magnetic containment unit... through EVP etc you got it to tell you its name and history blabla)...

So, I guess we are basically saying make sure you can defend your objects in the narrative - and do not feel you must claim all is real - as it doesn't matter sometimes so long as you know how everything fits and the backstory holds up to allow people to suspend their disbelief and go for the ride...

I think I am going to get one of the Crow's Nest keys to go along with my Whitestar cards! (Funny enough - when Whitestar came out, there was a discussion about them not looking old and aged... this discussion I hope points out they do not have to be UNLESS you are claiming the photographs come from that era... but the fact modern print and materials on the cards when never hold up to that story, your story must incorporate what they are to make it fit... such as you yourself printed the cards out based on photographs from the passenger lists etc. you don't hand out the real photos as you are preserving them due to their fragility (hence, you can make up a few fake old photos from the cards - a fake of a fake to support the original fake (2 fakes do not make a real... really?)) Ha!

Ok, I'm going to go read the Man in High Castle again. I think I will one day make a fake "The Grasshopper Lies Heavy" book for the gang here.
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"
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Speaking about the Game of Ur (on the other side, there's a Senet) and just for the fun of showing nice "props".
A replica made in the 20's/30's by the Cinquantenaire Museum in Brussels, Dpt of Archaeology( Jean Capart was the curator). The Egyptian wooden statue was sold for tourists in Egypt during the same era, only the blue heart scarab is an antique one made from Egyptian Blue.
A mix of antique and touristic stuff.
Those objects come along with others for some of my Egyptian routines and create the right atmosphere.

Image

Image
Dr Spektor
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Nice!

We must play a game sometime!

I'm travelling at the moment but when I get back home in January, I'll take some pics of my ancient games collections (actually it time spans to the 24th century as I have the dreaded 3 dimensional chess sets as well hee hee.... And those are hard to say are "authentic" however my patter there is how fiction guides the creation of real things.... Such as Star Trek producing so many ideas and concepts, space ships and various gadgets and so on are no in use decades later and still growing - ah, Borges how we should all appreciate your work)
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