Stolen Season with S.J. Tucker

Down at the Crossroads • Episode #58

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58_stolen_season_albumHello and thank you once again for joining me down at the crossroads for some music, magick, and Paganism. Where witches gather for the sabbath, offerings are made, pacts are signed for musical fame and we cross paths with today’s most influential Pagans, occultists, and deep thinkers. I am your bewitching, bald headed, host Chris Orapello and tonight we meet with beloved singer songwriter, pixie pirate, myth punk, folk rocker S.J. Tucker to talk about her new album Stolen Season, what went into the creation of it, as well as her music, the genus loci, some of her personal path, and her unexpected draw towards Hoodoo and Vodou. SJ is a great guest and we had a rather intense conversation that kind of broke my brain a little by the end of it.

In 2014, S.

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Flying with Sarah Anne Lawless

Down at the Crossroads • Episode #59

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059_saraj-232x300Hello and thank you once again for joining me down at the crossroads for some music, magick, and Paganism. Where witches gather for the sabbath, offerings are made, pacts are signed for musical fame and we cross paths with today’s most influential Pagans, occultists, and deep thinkers. I am your bewitching, bald headed, host Chris Orapello and tonight Tara and I meet with beloved blogger, artist, and professional witch Sarah Anne Lawless to discuss witchcraft, her blog, entheogens, flying ointments, and the idea and practice of soul flight. We have a great discussion about her work and experience as a non Wiccan witch and her flying ointments that are available online through the Black Arts Foundry website.

Featured Songs:

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‘VR is going to yield this staggering orgasm of the new’

Are you excited about Virtual Reality, which is finally available to consumers? Not as excited as John Riccitiello, I’ll wager, who says “VR is going to yield this staggering orgasm of the new,” per Gamesindustry.biz:

Unity CEO John Riccitiello on the company’s role in building a market for VR software, and why he’s no fan of the “sour grapes” offered by the cynics.

Ggn John Riccitiello ea core ips.jpg

John Riccitiello (CC)

 

The entire market for game engines has started to look an awful lot like Unity Technologies. Companies like Epic and Crytek have pushed for more diverse platforms, more open pricing models, and more accessibility for smaller teams, but always two steps behind the pace-setter, behind Unity. Indeed, one gets the feeling that every major player in the market would rattle on about “democratising game development” if David Helgason, Joachim Ante and Nicholas Francis hadn’t adopted it as their mantra a decade ago.

However, Unity’s own trajectory shouldn’t be ignored, either.

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The Intriguing History of Ghost Photography

“As camera tech has evolved, so too has the photography of puzzling ‘spirits’,” writes Howard Timberlake at BBC Future:

It’s February 2015 at Hampton Court Palace in London. Twelve-year-old Holly Hampsheir grabs her iPhone to take a photo of her cousin, Brook, as she walks alone through the majestic King’s Apartments. Snap.

It’s not until the following day that they discover Brook was not alone in the picture. A tall, grey, seemingly cloaked woman follows behind her. In a second photo, this strange anomaly is gone.

Was it a stunning image of a tortured apparition making a rare performance for the cameras, or something more… well… sensible?

The answer, as we’ll discover, says more about how smartphones take photos than anything supernatural. In fact, this grey ghoul is just the latest apparition in a fascinating history of ghost photography. Ever since the camera was invented, spooks have appeared in photos.

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Jim Carrey Slams California School Vaccine Legislation: It’s ‘Poisoning More Children’

Jim Carrey just became one of the highest profile “Anti-Vaxxers” per the Hollywood Reporter:

Carrey tweeted that Gov. Jerry Brown is a “corporate fascist” who “must be stopped.”

carrey tweet

Jim Carrey is speaking out against new legislation requiring all public school children in California to be vaccinated starting in 2016.

Carrey, who has been an outspoken critic of vaccinations, said Gov. Jerry Brown needed to be stopped.

“California Gov says yes to poisoning more children with mercury and aluminum in manditory [sic] vaccines. This corporate fascist must be stopped,” Carrey tweeted of Brown, who signed the legislation Tuesday.

Read more Hollywood’s Vaccine Wars: L.A.’s “Entitled” Westsiders Behind City’s Epidemic

The new legislation removes personal belief exemptions to vaccinations for religious reasons. Carrey was once in a relationship with Jenny McCarthy, the public face of the anti-vaccination movement. She has said her son developed autism after receiving a vaccination.

Fellow celebrities have also voiced their displeasure with the law, taking to Twitter to retweet those voicing similar positions and writing their own opinions condemning the compulsory vaccination policy.

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Reality Road: Here’s the music video for Mapei’s ‘Million Ways to Live’

In Volvo Trucks’ success series ‘Reality Road’ viewers get to look behind the scenes at the recording of the video for Mapei’s new single ‘Million Ways to Live’. The music video premieres today.

For three weeks now, viewers of ‘Reality Road’ have been able to watch how singer Mapei, music video director Liza Minou Morberg, and driver Jens Karlsson have travelled all across Europe recording a music video for Mapei’s new single ‘Million Ways to Live’.

“My vision for the video was to emphasise the message of freedom that is embodied in Mapei’s song. It’s about packing your bag and setting out on an adventure. I hope the viewers will be inspired to do the same thing when they see the video: let go, have fun, and live for today,” says Liza Minou Morberg, the director behind the video.

The track was specially written for the nine day long journey.
“I love travelling and enjoy meeting new people and experiencing new cultures.… Read the rest

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Quantum Spacecraft & Other Hidden Truths: What Lies Hidden In Snowden’s ‘Black Budget’ World?

Christina Sarich via Collective Evolution:

Not long ago Edward Snowden, a former intelligence contractor leaked the very first documentation that proves the existence of clandestine black budget operations. You can read more about that here.  So what discoveries lay hidden that are open to reasonable speculation?

EDO pallet.jpg

When Jimmy Carter installed solar panels on the White House in the 1970s, the whole world thought we were about to enter a new era of alternative energy. As soon as Reagan was elected, however, he took them down, taking us back to the dark ages of energy and marking several more decades of dependency on a polluting, non-renewable substance – oil. Conspiracy theories abound regarding why this happened, but the energy crisis goes down a deeper rabbit hole in Alice’s little wonder world than some of us could have imagined – enter quantum spacecraft, and a few other little secrets.

In order to travel light years away, compelling the forces of gravity to work in one’s favor is just the first of numerous challenges to overcome.

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Forget Little Green Men – Aliens Will Look Like Humans

Alright alien-hunters, you can stop looking for Grays, Little Green Men or other freakish alien stereotypes. They’re going to look like us according to Professor Simon Conway Morris, reports the Independent:

They are often portrayed on screen as little green men with elongated limbs and saucer-like eyes.

Credit: Anthony Appleyard (CC)

Credit: Anthony Appleyard (CC)

From E.T to the X-Files, aliens from outer space have captured our imagination for decades.

Yet a new book from a leading evolutionary biologist argues that if they exist and we ever encountered them, they would look very similar to us.

Professor Simon Conway Morris said extra-terrestrials that resemble human beings should have evolved on at least some of the many Earth-like planets that have been discovered by astronomers.

In his new book published on 2 July, The Runes of Evolution, the University of Cambridge academic builds on the principle of convergent evolution – that different species will independently evolve similar features, with the comparison of the camera eye of an octopus and a human eye a favourite example – and argues it will not just took place on Earth.

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Getting Down with Damh the Bard

Down at the Crossroads • Episode #57

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057_damh_the_bard_sabbatHello and thank you once again for joining me down at the crossroads for some music, magick, and Paganism. Where witches gather for the sabbath, offerings are made, pacts are signed for musical fame and we cross paths with today’s most influential Pagans, occultists, and deep thinkers. I am your bewitching, bald headed, host Chris Orapello and tonight we meet with podcaster, Druid and Song writer Damh the Bard to talk about his new album Sabbat, his work as a musician, and his position as the official Pendragon for The Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids (OBOD). Damh and I have a fun discussion beings fans of each others’ podcasts (DruidCast) and I of his music and work. There is a lot of laughing in this episode and in my excitement of speaking with him for the first time I got a little too close to my microphone at times which you may notice.Read the rest

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The History of Hippies, Yoga, and Vegetarianism

children-sunIf you think you know the history of the Hippie movement, Yoga or vegetarianism in the West, and you haven’t read Gordon Kennedy’s Children of the Sun, think again. Packed with photos the late 19th century (including many of young men with long flowing hair that look as if they were taken during the 1960s), this is undoubtedly the best documentation of how naturism, yoga, vegetarianism, and much that we associate with the Hippie movement, got its start in Germany, and was imported to the USA close to the beginning of the 20th century.

After a while out of print, Children of the Sun was recently re-released. If you want a taste of his work, Kennedy was recently interviewed by Brian Chidester of the Eden’s Island blog. Here’s a couple of paragraphs from their conversation:

GK: At a time when America had just dropped two atomic bombs on Japan and most of the nation was celebrating the end of America’s biggest war, a tribe of German and Jewish-American kids had united together and were diving into pools under giant waterfalls in the desert, climbing avocado trees, hitchhiking through the mountains and deserts without a gun or a sleeping bag, living in caves, composing music, practicing yoga, playing flutes and, unlike the beats or hippies, doing it without pot, tobacco, acid, qualudes, alcohol, television, methadrine, coffee, or money from mom and dad.

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