Support Reality Sandwich by becoming a Conscious Agent, and join Gary Lachman, Mitch Horowitz, David Metcalfe, and Pam Grossman for November’s Visionary Dialog. Starting November 17

Is the Contemporary Occult Different than Occult Era’s Past?

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Today we see a growing interest in fringe consciousness experiences long associated with the “occult”: clairvoyance, telepathy, precognition, and encounters with disembodied spirit. Burners return from the playa startled by the high incidence of synchronicity, and the uncanny moments when they caught their friends thoughts before words passed through their lips. Rigorous lab studies are demonstrating that these experiences are more than just superstition. At the same time, once-sober minded, skeptical shamanic journeyers return from ceremonies with plant spirit medicine convinced that consciousness permeates the universe. The contemporary occult expresses itself quite differently than the one we associate with 19th century seances, table tipping, Madame Blavatsky, W.B. Yeats and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. For instance, whatever happened to Ouija boards? Similarly, the mysticism of the 60s counterculture, with its obsessive throwing of the I Ching and the hippie levitation of the Pentagon, seems a far cry from how the occult appears today.

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But are the differences really so great? To explore this topic, we’ve gathered some of Reality Sandwich’s most knowledgeable and popular writers on the occult.

[h2]Featured Speakers[/h2]

  • Gary Lachman – Inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as a founding member and bassist for Blondie. Has written for The Guardian, Mojo, Times Literary Supplement, and more. Author of “Aleister Crowley: Magick, Rock and Roll, and the Wickedest Man in the World” and “The Secret History of Consciousness.”
  • Mitch Horowitz – A nationally known writer, speaker, and publisher in alternative spirituality. Author of  “One Simple Idea: How Positive Thinking Reshaped Modern Life,” and “Occult America.”
  • David Metcalfe – David is an independent researcher, writer and multimedia artist focusing on the interstices of art, culture, and consciousness. He writes regularly for Evolutionary Landscapes, Alarm Magazine, Modern Mythology, Disinfo.com, The Teeming Brain and his own blog The Eyeless Owl.
  • Pam Grossman – Pam is an independent curator, writer, and teacher of magical practice and history.  She is the creator of the blog Phantasmaphile and the Associate Editor of Abraxas International Journal of Esoteric Studies.


It all starts on November 17 at 8:00 p.m. EST with a live, interactive video discussion led by our featured authors. You can take part in the conversation, just like a Skype call, able to ask questions and offer observations on camera. Then the discussion moves to a text forum for 4 weeks of dialog and debate by the RS community, led by the featured authors and moderated by the RS team.

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[h2 color=”dark-pink”]Visionary Dialogs[/h2]

To participate in the Visionary Dialogs, all you need to do is become a Conscious Agent. Conscious Agents is a paid subscription program that helps Reality Sandwich stay vital, grow, and innovate. You can signup at the price level that feels right to you.

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Reality Sandwich’s Visionary Dialogs bring the RS community together to explore the transformational topics that are shaping the next wave of consciousness culture. Led by popular Reality Sandwich authors, each month sees the launch of a new Visionary Dialog with a live, online event, followed by 4 weeks of in-depth discussion in a text forum.

Visionary Dialogs are a benefit offered to Conscious Agents, the dedicated Reality Sandwich readers who support RS through a paid subscription. Subscriptions are sliding scale and priced so that everyone in the RS community can participate. When you become a Conscious Agent, you not only get access to Visionary Dialogs. You also make everything we do at Reality Sandwich possible. In addition, you receive MP3 recordings of new RS articles each week, get discounts to Evolver Learning Lab courses and Evolver.net products, and experience RS without the ad banners. To become a Conscious Agent, click here. Main image by Dave Fayram, courtesy of Creative Commons licensing.