[disinfo ed.’s note: Russ Kick, the first disinformation author has, gasp, written not one but three books for another publisher (it’s okay, we like them), the first of which is coming out on May 22nd: The Graphic Canon, Vol. 1: From the Epic of Gilgamesh to Shakespeare to Dangerous Liaisons. Russ and Seven Stories Press have kindly given us a sneak preview.]
The final book of the New Testament, and thus the Christian Bible as a whole, the Book of Revelation just might be the strangest work in the entire literary canon. Populated by the Whore of Babylon, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, the Beast, a lamb with seven horns and seven eyes, locusts with human faces, a seven-headed dragon, a false prophet, Satan, angels blowing trumpets of destruction, and other bizarre characters, this series of four visions has been interpreted as a literal guide to the fiery, blood-soaked end of the world as we know it and the establishment of Christ’s 1,000-year kingdom on Earth, as a coded guide to spiritual development, and as an intense mushroom trip.
In his book on Revelation, Jonathan Kirsch writes:
For anyone who reads the book of Revelation from beginning to end, the experience resembles a fever-dream or a nightmare: strange figures and objects appear and disappear and reappear, and the author himself flashes back and forth in time and place, sometimes finding himself in heaven and sometimes on earth, sometimes in the here and now and sometimes in the end-times, sometimes watching from afar and sometimes caught up in the events he describes. The author refers to the same characters by different names and titles, and he describes the same incidents from different vantage points. All the while, the characters and incidents, the words and phrases, even the letters and numbers of Revelation seem to shimmer with symbolic meanings that always float just out of reach.
Believers say the book was written by the Apostle John, but most scholars contend that it was written around 92–96 CE by an otherwise unknown early Christian prophet named John. Kirsch notes that the Book of Revelation is