The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

sense of pursuit

with 7 comments

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Oh boy, I’m all ‘effed up…

Just the other day, while innocently searching through Calvary Cemetery for a certain interment (wholly separate from the one described yesterday), your humble narrator must have suffered some sort of seizure. That would explain the malign paranoia which suddenly infected and disordered my thoughts, birthing a desire to move to a more populated section of the ancient villages for the sake of safety alone. The last time misgivings such as these came upon me was during a November 2009 trip to hoary Mt. Zion, when I was menaced by a certain group of children and their curiously polydactyl feline.

As always, it was a rambling walk-that half dogtrot/half stumble which I call scuttling- that had brought me to the place, and handicapped any chance of escape or avoidance of those extant dangers encountered in the Newtown Pentacle.

As always, solitude and otherness and massive vulnerability were my companions. As always, your humble narrator- physical coward, feckless quisling, and the least of men…

As always, an Outsider.

from wikipedia

The World Health Organization’s ICD-10 lists avoidant personality disorder as (F60.6) Anxious (avoidant) personality disorder.

It is characterized by at least four of the following:

  1. persistent and pervasive feelings of tension and apprehension;
  2. belief that one is socially inept, personally unappealing, or inferior to others;
  3. excessive preoccupation with being criticized or rejected in social situations;
  4. unwillingness to become involved with people unless certain of being liked;
  5. restrictions in lifestyle because of need to have physical security;
  6. avoidance of social or occupational activities that involve significant interpersonal contact because of fear of criticism, disapproval, or rejection.

Associated features may include hypersensitivity to rejection and criticism.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It was just a trick of the light- the shadow of some statue distorting through thickly polarized prescription sunglasses.

Often, when the brain cannot make sense of; or is overwhelmed by a flood of sensory information; it will perform a sort of short hand during the processing of visual or auditory observation. That’s why kids see dragons in the clouds, and representations of cultic deities are often presented as having spontaneously appeared on foodstuffs. It’s the way the organ functions– using pattern recognition.

That’s why, as my steps hurriedly swept over and through Calvary’s dusty desolations, I chose to ignore that shadowy and peripheral shape which seemed to be dogging my progress and declared it to just be an hallucination. If only it didn’t seem to be the same shape- everywhere I went- there it was- ducking around a tombstone or slipping around a tree.

One observance in particular upset my delicate equilibrium, and forced me to ingest a dosage of the esoteric prescription drugs which my doctors advise consumption of whenever one of “my spells” comes upon me.

Light headed from the medications, the abyssal potions were useless- and your humble narrator was thunderstruck- consumed by cowardice and shock.

from wikipedia

Blasphemous thoughts are a common component of OCD, documented throughout history; notable religious figures such as Martin Luther and St. Ignatius were known to be tormented by intrusive, blasphemous or religious thoughts and urges. Martin Luther had urges to curse God and Jesus, and was obsessed with images of “the Devil’s behind”. St. Ignatius had numerous obsessions, including the fear of stepping on pieces of straw forming a cross, fearing that it showed disrespect to Christ. A study of 50 patients with a primary diagnosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder found that 40% had religious and blasphemous thoughts and doubts—a higher number than the 38% who had the obsessional thoughts related to dirt and contamination more commonly associated with OCD. One study suggests that content of intrusive thoughts may vary depending on culture, and that blasphemous thoughts may be more common in men than in women.

According to Fred Penzel, a New York psychologist, some common religious obsessions and intrusive thoughts are:

    • sexual thoughts about God, saints, and religious figures such as Mary
    • bad thoughts or images during prayer or meditation
    • thoughts of being possessed
    • fears of sinning or breaking a religious law or performing a ritual incorrectly
    • fears of omitting prayers or reciting them incorrectly
    • repetitive and intrusive blasphemous thoughts
    • urges or impulses to say blasphemous words or commit blasphemous acts during religious services.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Shaken, and stirred as well- transit from the cemetery into the surrounding “once upon a time” hamlet called Blissville was accomplished by crossing Greenpoint Avenue at Gale Avenue and a hurried flight was carried out along the concrete of Borden Avenue. Two sets of footprints were carved into the sooty deposits which distinguish the walkways of the ancient village, and the second one sure wasn’t Jesus…

In shattered automotive glass and an occasional plate glass window, notice was additionally made of a skirting movement just at the edges of perception. As mentioned- my cognition was altered by the pharmaceutical remedies offered and prescribed by my concerned doctors, but something odd really did seem to be following me.

Before long, I found myself at Hunters Point in Long Island City by the East River… but we’ll be talking about that in a few days…

I had decided that if this specter insisted on stalking me, it was in for one mighty long walk…

more tomorrow…

from wikipedia

A hallucination may occur in a person in a state of good mental and physical health, even in the apparent absence of a transient trigger factor such as fatigue, intoxication or sensory deprivation.

It is not widely recognized that hallucinatory experiences are not merely the prerogative of those suffering from mental illness, or normal people in abnormal states, but that they occur spontaneously in a significant proportion of the normal population, when in good health and not undergoing particular stress or other abnormal circumstance.

The evidence for this statement has been accumulating for more than a century. Studies of hallucinatory experience in the sane go back to 1886 and the early work of the Society for Psychical Research, which suggested approximately 10% of the population had experienced at least one hallucinatory episode in the course of their life. More recent studies have validated these findings; the precise incidence found varies with the nature of the episode and the criteria of ‘hallucination’ adopted, but the basic finding is now well-supported.

7 Responses

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  1. Mitch, did you ever have a girlfriend? A boyfriend? A dog? Maybe a hamster?


    March 2, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    • I have all sorts of friends. Never a hamster… monstrous little things… brrr

      Mitch Waxman

      March 2, 2011 at 1:29 pm

  2. […] grave of it’s first interment (Esther Ennis, 1848), stepped in a dead rabbit, and picked up a paranormal companion on my long walk- two things came to my […]

  3. […] the grave of it’s first interment (Esther Ennis, 1848), stepped in a dead rabbit, and picked up a paranormal companion on my long walk- two things came to my notice. The first, which discussed and observed several of […]

  4. […] Cemetery’s first interment (Esther Ennis, 1848), stepped in a dead rabbit, picked up a paranormal companion on my long walk, found myself in a state of “stupendous ruin“, and soon realized that […]

  5. […] of Calvary Cemetery’s first interment (Esther Ennis, 1848), stepped in a dead rabbit, picked up a paranormal companion on my long walk, found myself in a state of “stupendous ruin“, and soon realized that my […]

  6. […] of Calvary Cemetery’s first interment (Esther Ennis, 1848), stepped in a dead rabbit, picked up a paranormal companion on my long walk, found myself in a state of “stupendous ruin“, soon realized that my […]

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