Friday, September 30, 2011

Third Bardo

Third Bardo

Third Bardo: The Period of Re-entry (Sidpa Bardo)


If, in the second Bardo, the voyager is incapable of holding on to the knowledge that the peaceful and wrathful visions were projections of his own mind, but became attracted to or frightened by one or more of them, he will enter the Third Bardo. In this period he struggles to regain routine reality and his ego; the Tibetans call it the Bardo of "seeking rebirth." It is the period in which the consciousness makes the transition from transcendent reality to the reality of ordinary waking life. The teachings of this manual are of the utmost importance if one wishes to make a peaceful and enlightened re-entry and avoid a violent or unpleasant one.
In the original Bardo Thodol the aim of the teachings is "liberation," i.e., release from the cycle of birth and death. Interpreted esoterically, this means that the aim is to remain at the stage of perfect illumination and not to return to social game reality.
Only persons of extremely advanced spiritual development are able to accomplish this, by exercising the Transference Principle at the moment of ego-death. For average persons who undertake a psychedelic voyage, the return to game reality is inevitable.

Such persons can and should use this part of the manual for the following purposes:
  1. to free themselves from Third Bardo traps;
  2. to prolong the session, thus assuring a maximum degree of illumination;
  3. to select a favorable re-entry, i.e., to return to a wiser and more peaceful post-session personality.
Although no definite time estimates can be given, the Tibetans estimate that about 50% of the entire psychedelic experience is spent in the Third Bardo by most normal people. At times, as indicated in the Introduction, someone may move straight to the re-entry period if he is unprepared for or frightened by the ego-loss experiences of the first two Bardos.

The types of re-entry made can profoundly color the person's subsequent attitudes and feelings about himself and the world, for weeks or even months afterwards. A session which has been predominantly negative and fearful can still be turned to great advantage and much can be learned from it, provided the re-entry is positive and highly conscious. Conversely, a happy and revelatory experience can be made valueless by a fearful or negative re-entry.
The key instructions of the Third Bardo are: (1) do nothing, stay calm, passive and relaxed, no matter what happens; and (2) recognize where you are. If you do not recognize you will be driven by fear to make a premature and unfavorable re-entry. Only by recognizing can you maintain that state of calm, passive concentration necessary for a favorable re-entry. That is why so many recognition-points are given. If you fail on one, it is always possible, up to the very end, to succeed on another. Hence these teachings should be read carefully and remembered well.

In the following sections some of the characteristic Third Bardo experiences are described. In Part IV instructions are given appropriate to each section. At this stage in a psychedelic session the voyager is usually capable of telling the guide verbally what he is experiencing, so that the appropriate sections can be read. A wise guide can often sense the precise nature of the ego's struggle without words. The voyager will usually not experience all of these states, but only one or some of them; or sometimes the return to reality can take completely new and unusual turns. In such a case the general instructions for the Third Bardo should be emphasized Third Bardo: Preliminary Instructions.

I. General Description of the Third Bardo

Normally, the person descends, step by step, into lower (more constricted) states of consciousness. Each step downwards may be preceded by a swooning into unconsciousness. Occasionally the descent may be sudden, and the person will find himself jolted back to a vision of reality which by contrast with the preceding phases seems dull, static, hard, angular, ugly and puppet-like. Such changes can induce fear and horror and he may struggle desperately to regain familiar reality. He may get trapped into irrational or even bestial perspectives which then dominate his entire consciousness. These narrow primitive elements stem from aspects of his personal history which are usually repressed. The more enlightened consciousness of the first two Bardos and the civilized elements of ordinary waking life are shelved in favor of powerful, obsessive primitive impulses, which in fact are merely faded and incoherent instinctual parts of the voyager's total personality. The suggestibility of Bardo consciousness makes them seem all-powerful and overwhelming.
On the other hand, the voyager may also feel that he possesses supernormal powers of perception and movement, that he can perform miracles, extraordinary feats of bodily control etc. The Tibetan book definitely attributes paranormal faculties to the consciousness of the Bardo voyager and explains it as due to the fact that the Bardo-consciousness encompasses future elements as well as past. Hence clairvoyance, telepathy, ESP, etc. are said to be possible. Objective evidence does not indicate whether this sense of increased perceptiveness is real or illusory. We therefore leave this as an open question, to be decided by empirical evidence.
This then is the first recognition point of the Third Bardo. The feeling of supernormal perception and performance. Assuming that it is valid, the manual warns the voyager not to be fascinated by his heightened powers, and not to exercise them. In yogic practice, the most advanced of the lamas teach the disciple not to strive after psychic powers of this nature for their own sake; for until the disciple is morally fit to use them wisely, they become a serious impediment to his higher spiritual development. Not until the selfish, game-involved nature of man is completely mastered is he safe in using them.

A second sign of Third Bardo existence are experiences of panic, torture and persecution. They are distinguished from the wrathful visions fo the Second Bardo in that they definitely seem to involve the person's own "skin-encapsulated ego." Mind-controlling manipulative figures and demons of hideous aspects may be hallucinated. The form that these torturing demons take will depend on the person's cultural background. Where Tibetans saw demons and beasts of prey, a Westerner may see impersonal machinery grinding, or depersonalizing and controlling devices of different futuristic varieties. Visions of world destruction, dying in space-fiction modes, and hallucinations of being engulfed by destructive powers will likewise come; and sounds of the mind-controlling apparatus, of the "combine's fog machinery," of the gears which move the scenery of the puppet show, of angry overflowing seas, and of the roaring fire and of fierce winds springing up, and of mocking laughter.
When these sounds and visions come, the first impulse will be to flee from them in panic and terror, not caring where one goes, so long as one goes out. In psychedelic drug experiences, the person may at this time plead or demand to be brought "out of it" through antidotes and tranquillizers. The person may see himself as about to fall down deep, terrifying precipices. These symbolize the so-called evil passions which, like narcotic drugs, enslave and bind mankind to existence in game-networks (sangsara): anger, lust, stupidity, pride or egoism, jealousy, and control-power. Such experiences, just as the previous one of enhanced power, should be regarded as recognizing features of the Third Bardo. One should neither flee the pain nor pursue the pleasure.

Recognition is all that is necessary - and recognition depends upon preparation.

A third sign is a kind of restless, unhappy wandering which may be purely mental or may involve actual physical movement. The person feels as if driven by winds (winds of karma) or shunted around mechanically. There may be brief respites at certain places or scenes in the "ordinary" human world. Like a person travelling alone at night along a highway, having his attention arrested by prominent landmarks, great isolated trees, houses, bridgeheads, temples, hot-dog stands, etc., the person in the re-entry period has similar experiences. He may demand to return to familiar haunts in the human world. But any such external placation is temporary and soon the restless wandering will recommence.

There may come a desperate desire to phone or otherwise contact your family, your doctor, your friends and appeal to them to pull you out of the state. This desire should be resisted. The guide and the fellow voyagers can be of best assistance. One should not try to involve others in one's hallucinatory world. The attempt will fail anyway since outsiders are usually unable to understand what is happening. Again, merely to recognize these desires as Third Bardo manifestations is already the first step toward liberation.

A fourth, rather common experience is the following: the person may feel stupid and full of incoherent thoughts, whereas everyone else seems to be perfectly knowing and wise. This leads to feelings of guilt and inadequacy and in extreme from to the Judgment Vision, to be described below. This feeling of stupidity is merely the natural result of the limited perspective under which the consciousness is operating in this Bardo.

Calm, relaxed acceptance and trust will enable the voyager to win liberation at this poin.

Another experience, the fifth recognizing feature, which is especially impressive when it occurs suddenly, is the feeling of being dead, cut off from surrounding life, and full of misery. The person may with a jolt awake from some trance-like swoon and experience himself and the others as lifeless robots, performing wooden meaningless gestures. He may feel that he will never come back and will lament his miserable state.
Again, such fantasies are to be recognized as the attempts of the ego to regain control. In the true state of ego-death, as it occurs in the First or Second Bardos, such complaints are never uttered.

Sixth, one may have the feeling of being oppressed or crushed or squeezed into cracks and crevices amidst rocks and boulders. Or the person may feel that a kind of metallic net or cage may encompass him. This symbolizes the attempt prematurely to enter an ego-robot which is unfitting or unequipped to deal with the expanded consciousness. Therefore one should relax the panicky desire to regain an ego.

A Seventh aspect is a kind of grey twilight-like light suffusing everything, which is in marked contrast to the brilliantly radiating lights and colors of the earlier stages of the voyage. Objects, instead of shining, glowing and vibrating, are now dully colored, shabby and angular.

The passages Third Bardo: Preliminary Instructions contain general instructions for the Third Bardo state and its recognizable features. Any or all of the passages may be read when the guide senses that the voyager is beginning to return to the ego.

II. Re-entry Visions

In the preceding section the symptoms of re-entry were described, the signs that the voyager is tryihng to regain his ego. In this section are described visions of the types of re-entry one can make.

The Tibetan manual conceives of the voyager as returning eventually to one of six worlds of game existence (sangsara). That is, the re-entry to the ego can take place on one of six levels, or as one of six personality types. Two of these are higher than the normal human, three are lower. The highest, most illuminated, level is that of the devas, who are what Westerners would call saints, sages or divine teachers. They are the most enlightened people walking the earth. Gautama Buddha, Lao Tse, Christ. The second level is that of the asuras, who may be called titans or heroes, people with a more than human degree of power and vision. The third level is that of most normal human beings, struggling through game-networks, occasionally breaking free. The fourth level is that of primitive and animalistic incarnations. In this category we have the dog and the cock, symbolic of hyper-sexuality concomitant with jealousy; the pig, symbolizing lustful stupidity and uncleanliness; the industrious, hoarding ant; the insect or worm signifying an earthy or grovelling disposition; the snake, flashing in anger; the ape, full of rampaging primitive power; the snarling "wolf of the steppes;" the bird, soaring freely. Many more could be enumerated. In all cultures of the world people have adopted identities in the image of animals. In childhood and in dreams it is a process familiar to all. The fifth level is that of neurotics, frustrated lifeless spirits forever pursuing unsatisfied desires; the sixth and lowest level is hell or psychosis. Less than one percent of ego- transcendent experiences end in sainthood or psychosis. Most persons return to the normal human level.

According to The Tibetan Book of the Dead, each of the six game worlds or levels of existence is associated with a characteristic sort of thralldom, from which non-game experiences give temporary freedom: (1) existence as a deva, or saint, although more desirable than the others, is concomitant with an ever-recurring round of pleasure, free game ecstasy; (2) existence as an asura, or titan, is concomitant with incessant heroic warfare; (3) helplessness and slavery are characteristic of animal existence; (4) torments of unsatisfied needs and wants are characteristic of the existence of pretas, or unhappy spirits; (5) the characteristic impediments of human existence are inertia, smug ignorance, physical or psychological handicaps or various sorts.

According to the Bardo Thodol, the level one is detined for is determined by one's karma. During the period of the Third Bardo premonitory signs and visions of the different levels appear, that for which one is heading appearing most clearly. For example, the voyager may feel full of godlike power (asuras), or he may feel himself stirred by primitive or bestial impulses, or he may experience that all-pervasive frustration of the unhappy neurotics, or shudder at the tortures of a self-created hell.

The chances of making a favorable re-entry are increased if the process is allowed to take its own natural course, without effort or struggle. One should avoid pursuing or fleeing any of the visions, but meditate calmly on the knowledge that all levels exist in the Buddha also.
One can recognize and examine the signs as they appear and learn a great deal about oneself in a very short time. Although it is unwise to struggle against or flee the visions that come in this period, the Instructions for Re-entry Visions are designed to help the voyager regain First Bardo transcendence. In this way, if the person finds himself about to return to a personality or ego which he finds inappropriate to his new knowledge about himself, he can, by following the instructions, prevent this and make a fresh re-entry.

III. The All-Determining Influence of Thought

Liberation may be obtained, by such confrontation, even though previously it was not. If, however, liberation is not obtained even after these confrontations, further earnest and continued application is essential.
Should you feel attachment to material possessions, to old games and activities, or if you get any because other people are still involved in pursuits that you have renounced, this will affect the psychological balance in such a way that even if destined to return at a higher level, you will actually re-enter on a lower level in the world of unsatisfied spirits (neurosis). On the other hand, even if you do feel attached to worldly games that you have renounced, you will not be able to play them, and they will be of no use to you. Therefore abandon weakness and attachment to them; cast them away wholly; renounce them from your heart. No matter who may be enjoying your possessions, or taking your role, have no feelings of miserliness or jealousy, but be prepared to renounce them willingly. Think that you are offering them to your internal freedom and to your expaned consciousness. Abide in the feeling of non-attachment, devoid of weakness and craving.
Again, when the activities of the other members of the session are wrong, careless, inattentive or distracting, when the agreement or contract is broken, and when purity of intention is lost by any participant, and frivolity and laxness take over (all of which can clearly be seen by the Bardo voyager) you may feel lack of faith and begin to doubt your beliefs. You will be able to perceive any anxiety or fear, any selfish actions, ego-centric conduct and manipulative behavior. You may think: "Alas! they are playing me false, they have cheated and deceived." If you think thus, you will become extremely depressed, and through great resentment you will acquire disbelief and loss of faith, instead of affection and humble trust. Since this affects the psychological balance, re-entry will certainly be made on an unpleasant level.
Such thinking will not only be of no use, but it will do great harm. However improper the behavior of other, think thus: "What? How can the words of a Buddha be inappropriate? It is like the reflection of blemishes on my own face which I see in a mirror; my own thoughts must be impure. As for these others, they are noble in body, holy in speech, and the Buddha is within them: their actions are lessons for me."
Thus thinking, put your trust in your companions and exercise sincere love towards them. Then whatever they do will be to your benefit. The exercise of that love is very important; do not forget this!
Again, even if you were destined to return to a lower level and are already going into that existence, yet through the good deeds of friends, relatives, participants, learned teachers who devote themselves wholeheartedly to the correct performance of beneficent rituals, the delight from your feeling greatly cheered at seeing them will, by its own virtue, so affect the psychological balance that even though heading downwards, you may yet rise to a higher and happier level. Therefore you should not create selfish thoughts, but exercise pure affection and humble faith towards all, impartially. This is highly important. Hence be extremely careful.
The Instructions for the All-Determing Influence of Thought are useful in any phase of the Third Bardo, but particularly if the voyager is reacting with suspicion or resentment to other members of the group, or to his own friends and relatives.

IV. Judgment Visions

The judgment vision may come: the Third Bardo blame game. "Your good genius will count up your good deeds with white pebbles, the evil genius the evil deeds with black pebbles." A judgment scene is a central part of many religious systems, and the vision can assume various forms. Westerners are most likely to see it in the well-known Christian version. The Tibetans give a psychological interpretation to this as to all the other visions. The Judge, or Lord of Death, symbolizes conscience itself in its stern aspect of impartiality and love of righteousness. The "Mirror of Karma" (the Christian Judgment Book), consulted by the Judge, is memory. Different parts of the ego will come forward, some offering lame excuses to meet accusations, others ascribing baser motives to various deeds, counting apparently neutral deeds among the black ones; still others offering justifications or requests for pardon. The mirror of memory reflects clearly; lying and subterfuge will be of no avail. Be not frightened, tell no lies, face truch fearlessly.
No you may imagine yourself surrounded by figures who wish to torment, torture or ridicule you (the "Executive Furies of the Robot Lord of Death"). These merciless figures may be internal or they may involve the people around you, seen as pitiless, mocking, superior. Remember that fear and guilt and persecuting, mocking figures are your own hallucinations. Your own guilt machine. Your personality is a collection of thought-patterns and void. It cannot be harmed or injured. "Swords cannot pierce it, fire cannot burn it." Free yourself from your own hallucinations. In reality there is no such thing as the Lord of Death, or a justice-dispensing god or demon or spirit. Act so as to recognize this.

Recognize that you are in the Third Bardo. Meditate upon your ideal symbol. If you do not know how to meditate, then merely analyze with great care the real nature of that which is frightening you: "Reality" is nothing but a voidness (Dharma-Kaya). That voidness is not of the voidness of nothingness, but a voidness at the true nature of which you feel awed, and before which your consciousness shines more clearly and lucidly. [That is the state of mind known as "Sambhoga-Kaya." In that state, you experience, with unbearable intensity, Voidness and Brightness inseparable - the Voidness bright by nature and the Brightness inseparable from the Voidness - a state of the primordial or unmodified consciousness, which is the Adi-Kaya. And the power of this, shining unobstructedly, will radiate everywhere; it is the Nirmana-Kaya.

These refer to the fundamental Wisdom Teachings of the Bardo Thodol. In all Tibetan systems of yoga, realization of the Voidness is the one great aim. To realize it is to attain the unconditioned Dharma-Kaya, or "Divine Body of Truth," the primordial state of uncreatedness, of the supra-mundane All-Consciousness. The Dharma-Kaya is the highest of the three bodies of the Buddha and of all Buddhas and beings who have perfect enlightenment. The other two bodies are the Sambhoga-Kaya or "Divine Body of Perfect Endowment" and the Nirmana-Kaya or "Divine Body of Incarnation." Adi-Kaya is synonymous with Dharma-Kaya. The Dharma-Kaya is primordial, formless Essential Wisdom; it is true experience freed from all error or inherent or accidental obscuration. It includes both Nirvana and Sangsara, which are polar states of consciousness, but in the realm of pure consciousness identical. The Sambhoga-Kaya embodies, as in the five Dhyani Buddhas, Reflected or Modified Wisdom; and the Nirmana-Kaya embodies, as in the Human Buddhas, Practical or Incarnate Widom. All enlightened beings who are reborn in this or any other world with full consciousness, as workers for the betterment of their fellow creatures, are said to be Nirmana-Kaya incarnates. Lama Kazi Dawa-Samdup, the translator of the Bardo Thodol, held that the Adi-Buddha, and all deities associated with the Dharma-Kaya, are not to be regarded as personal deities, but as personifications of primordial and universal forces, laws or spiritual influences. "In the boundless panorama of the existing and visible universe, whatever shapes appear, whatever sounds vibrate, whatever radiances illuminate, or whatever consciousnesses cognize, all are the play of manifestation in the Tri-Kaya, the Three-fold Principle of the Cause of All Causes, the Primordial Trinity. Impenetrating all, is the All-Pervading Essence of Spirit, which is Mind. It is uncreated, impersonal, self-existing, immaterial and indestructible." The Tri-Kaya is the esoteric trinity and corresponds to the exoteric trinity of Buddha, the Scriptures and the Priesthood (or your own divinity, this manual and your companions).
If the voyager is struggling with guilt and penance hallucinations, the Instructions for Judgment Visions may be read.

V. Sexual Visions

Sexual visions are extremely frequent during the Third Bardo. You may see or imagine males and females copulating. [According to Jung. ("Psychological Commentary" to The Tibetan Book of the Dead, Evans-Wentz edition, p. xiii), "Freud's theory is the first attempt made in the West to investigate, as if from below, from the animal sphere of instinct the psychic territory that corresponds in Tantric Lamaism to the Sidpa Bardo." The vision described here, in which the person sees mother and father in sexual intercourse, corresponds to the "primal scene" in psychoanalysis. At this level, then, we begin to see a remarkable convergence of Eastern and Western psychology. Note also the exact correspondence to the psychoanalytic theory of the Oedipus Complex.] This vision may be internal or it may involve the people around you. You may hallucinate multi-person orgies and experience both desire and shame, attraction and disgust. You may wonder what sexual performance is expected of you and have doubts about your ability to perform at this time.
When these visons occur, remember to withhod yourself from action or attachment. Have faith and float gently with the stream. Trust in the unity of life and in your companions.
If you attempt to enter into your old ego because you are attracted or repulsed, if you try to join or excape from the orgy you are hallucinating, you will re-enter on an animal or neurotic level. If you become conscious of "malness," hatred of the father together with jealousy and attraction towards the mother will be experienced; if you become conscious of "femaleness," hatred of the mother together with attraction and fondness for the father is experienced.
It is perhaps needless to say that this kind of self-centered sexuality has little in common with the sexuality of transpersonal experiences. Physical union can be one expression or manifestation of cosmic union.

Visions of sexual union may sometimes be followed by visions of conception - you may actually visualize the sperm uniting with the ovum - , of intra-uterine life and birth through the womb. Some people claim to have re-lived their own physical birth in psychedelic sessions and occasionally confirming evidence for such claims has been put forward. Whether this is so or not may be left as a question to be decided by empirical evidence. Sometimes the birth visions will be clearly symbolic - e.g., emergence from a cocoon, breaking out of a shell, etc.
Whether the birth vision is constructed from memory or fantasy, the psychedelic voyager should try to recognize the signs indicating the type of personality that is being reborn.
The Instructions for Sexual Visions may be read to the voyager who is struggling with sexual hallucinations.

VI. Methods for Preventing the Re-Entry

Although many confrontations and recognition points have been given, the person may be ill-prepared and still be wandering back to game reality. It is of advantage to postpone the return for as long as possible, thus maximizing the degree of enlightenment in the subsequent personality. For this reason four meditative methods are given for prolonging the ego-loss state. They are (1) meditation on the Buddha or guide; (2) concentration on good games; (3) meditation on illusion; and (4) meditation on the void. See the Four Methods of Preventing Re-entry. Each one attempts to lead the voyager back to the First Bardo central stream of energy from which he has been separated by game involvements. One may ask how these meditative methods, which seem difficult for the ordinary person, can be effective. The answer given in the Tibetan Bardo Thodol is that due to the increased suggestibility and openness of the mind in the psychedelic state these methods can be used by anyone, regardless of intellectual capacity, or proficiency in meditation.

VII. Methods of Choosing the Post-Session Personality

Choosing the post-session ego is an extremely profound art and should not be undertaken carelessly or hastily. One should not return fleeing from hallucinated tormentors. Such re-entry will tend to bring the person to one of the three lower levels. One should first banish the fear by visualizing one's protective figure or the Buddha; then choose calmly and impartially.
The limited foreknowledge available to the voyager should be used to make a wise choice. In the Tibetan tradition each of the levels of game-existence is associated with a particular color and also certain geographical symbols. These may be different for twentieth-century Westerners. Each person has to learn to decode his own internal road map. The Tibetan indicators may be used as a starting point. The purpose is clear: one should follow the signs of the three higher types and shun those of the three lower. One should follow light and pleasant visions and shun dark and dreary ones.
The world of saints (devas) is said to shine with a white light and to be preceded by visions of delightful temples and jewelled mansions. The world of heroes (asuras) has a green light and is signalled by magical forests and fire images. The ordinary human world has a yellow light. Animal existence is foreshadowed by a blue light and images of caves and deep holes in the earth. The world of neurotics or unsatisfied spirits has a red light and visions of desolate plains and forest wastes. The hell world emits a smoke-colored light and is preceded by sounds of wailing, visions of gloomy lands, black and white houses and black roads along which you have to travel.
Use your foresight to choose a good post-session robot. Do not be attracted to your old ego. Whether you choose to pursue power, or status, or wisdom, or learning, or servitude, or whatever, choose impartially, without being attracted or repelled. Enter into game existence with good grace, voluntarily and freely. Visualize it as a celestial mansion, i.e., as an opportunity to exercise game-ecstasy. Have faith in the protection of the deities and choose. The mood of complete impartiality is important since you may be in error. A game that appears good may later turn out to be bad. Complete impartiality, freedom from want or fear, ensure that a maximally wise choice is made.
As you return you see spread out before you the world, your former life, a planet full of fascinating objects and events. Each aspect of the return trip can be a delightful discovery. Soon you will be descending to take your place in worldly events. The key to this return voyage is simply this: take it easy, slowly, naturally. Enjoy every second. Don't rush. Don't be attached to your old games. Recognize that you are in the re-entry period. Do not return with any emotional pressure. Everything you see and touch can glow with radiance. Each moment can be a joyous discovery.

Here end the Third Bardo, The Period of Re-Entry

I used to religiously (um ha ha) follow the Bardo Thodol so "guessing" that LOST was, originally, the Bardo, was no great stretch. When too many people came too close to guessing the truth, the producers and writers changed direction- which is never a good idea. And so it stumbled on and on to Season 6 and the car crash ending. Wherein it reverted to their poorly understood and poorly executed idea of the Bardo- which is a plurality of purgatories, not one. Which explains the attempt by the writers to keep sticking to the Bardo levels despite all the marketing and merchandising along the way.
What is possibly more interesting is that the different Bardos appealed to the audience to different degrees- reflecting our society's current spiritual level. Which is to say, low.

'Avengers': Thor, Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America — EXCLUSIVE PICS | Inside Movies |

'Avengers': Thor, Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America — EXCLUSIVE PICS | Inside Movies |

'The Avengers' dis-assembled! EXCLUSIVE cast portraits revealed

Image Credit: Michael Muller
The whole fun of The Avengers is seeing these characters joined together as one fighting force, but for now Marvel Studios has unveiled solo portraits of the six superheroes.
Read more about the May 4, 2012, movie in this week’s issue of EW, on stands tomorrow. But in the meantime, here’s a little online exclusive with the actors discussing their high-powered alter-egos and working with writer-director Joss Whedon (the geek demi-god who created Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly.)
BLACK WIDOW: “The other day we were doing this big reveal shot of all the Avengers. Thor has got his hammer, Cap’s got his shield, Hawkeye has his bow and arrow, and Hulk is huge. Then it pans over to me and I’ve got guns. Iron Man’s like, hovering above all of us, ready to go,” says Scarlett Johansson. “I was like, ‘Joss… um… do I look okay holding these guns?’” Whedon’s response reassured her: “She’s a total badass. She’s a killing machine.”

Image Credit: Michael Muller
IRON MAN: What were Robert Downey Jr.’s first meetings like with Whedon when the script was being developed? “Well, I said, ‘I need to be in the opening sequence. I don’t know what you’re thinking, but Tony needs to drive this thing.’ He was like, ‘Okay, let’s try that.’ We tried it and it didn’t work, because this is a different sort of thing, the story and the idea and the theme is the theme, and everybody is just an arm of the octopus. But what was I like?” He laughs. “As usual, just f—ing aggressive and hurtful; whatever. The usual.”
CAPTAIN AMERICA: Chris Evans says the Steve Rogers we see in The Avengers is a much darker, more cynical version after awakening for the first time since World War II. “It’s just about him trying to come to terms with the modern world. You’ve got to imagine, it’s enough of a shock to accept the fact that you’re in a completely different time, but everybody you know is dead. Everybody you cared about,” Evans says. “He was a soldier, obviously, everybody he went to battle with, all of his brothers in arms, they’re all dead. He’s just lonely. I think in the beginning it’s a fish out of water scene, and it’s tough. It’s a tough pill for him to swallow. Then comes trying to find a balance with the modern world.”
Image Credit: Michael Muller
THE INCREDIBLE HULK: Mark Ruffalo says his Bruce Banner really wants to join The Avengers, but because of his past and the group’s sort of overall fear of him, he’s the outcast among outcasts. “He’s the most mild-mannered guy, but a total loose cannon. No one wants to set him off except for Iron Man, except for Downey, who just wants to see him pop,” Ruffalo laughs. “It’s funny, there’s a really cool dynamic between Tony Stark and Banner. Banner actually enjoys it, and finds it really refreshing. They’re a lot alike in a strange way. They’re both these kind of scientists who are mavericks, kind of renegades. Banner, for all his mild-mannered mythology, he’s still the dude who was testing some pretty crazy s–t on himself, so he has that rebel streak in him.”
THOR: Chris Hemsworth says his hammer-pounding god is not just once again fighting Loki, his villainous brother from Asgard, but also secretly trying to protect him. “I think [Thor's] motivation is much more of a personal one, in the sense that it’s his brother that is stirring things up. Whereas everyone else, it’s some bad guy who they’ve gotta take down. It’s a different approach for me, or for Thor. He’s constantly having to battle the greater good and what he should do vs. … it’s his little brother there,” the actor says. “I’ve been frustrated with my brothers at times, or family, but I’m the only one who is allowed to be angry at them. There’s a bit of that.”
Image Credit: Michael Muller
HAWKEYE: Like Black Widow, he’s the only regular human in The Avengers, which gives him a working-class-superhero pride. “The only sort of thing I cling to is the relationship of past experiences with Scarlett’s character, with them both being human. I can cling to that,” says Jeremy Renner. But there’s no insecurity. “Quite the opposite,” the actor says. “He’s the only one who can really take down The Hulk with his tranq tip arrows. He knows his limitations. But when it comes down to it, there has to be a sense of confidence in any superhero.” StumbleUpon

Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Tibetan Book of LOST

The Tibetan Book of LOST

It took them a long, LONG time, but here and there folks are turning to the view I posted on the Fuselage and elsewhere during season 2 of lost - it's the Bardo. When too many viewers worked that out the writers messed around, drew it out, but inevitably in the end they returned to it for The End. StumbleUpon

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

LOST untangled THE END


LOST theories - tibetan buddhism - final iteration


Compiled by:

Ven. Pende Hawter
The Karuna Hospice Service

What is healing?

What do we mean by healing? Do we mean healing of the physical body,
healing of the psyche/soul/mind, or both of these. What is the
connection between body and mind? Many modern healing techniques regard
successful healing as the cure of the presenting physical problem,
whether this be symptoms of cancer, AIDS, chronic fatigue syndrome, or
some other illness. If the person does not recover from the presenting
physical problem, or if that problem recurs or another develops at a
later time, this may be regarded as failure. It is not uncommon in
these situations for the therapist or organisation that has been
helping the "sick" person to infer or state that the person must have
done something wrong, that they haven't stuck strictly enough to the
diet or meditated enough or done whatever else it was that they were
supposed to do. In these situations the person can become very guilty,
depressed or angry. In many cases, they just give up hope. To avoid
these problems, it is necessary to consider a more comprehensive view
of healing that incorporates not only physical healing but mental

Mind is the creator

To understand healing from the Buddhist perspective, a useful starting
point is to consider the Buddhist concept of mind. The mind is
non-physical. It is formless, shapeless, colourless, genderless and has
the ability to cognize or know. The basic nature of mind is pure,
limitless and pervasive, like the sun shining unobstructedly in a clear
sky. The problems or sickness we experience are like clouds in the sky
obscuring the sun. Just as the clouds temporarily block the sun but are
not of the same nature as the sun, our problems or sickness are
temporary and the causes of them can be removed from the mind. From the
Buddhist perspective, the mind is the creator of sickness and health.
In fact, the mind is believed to be the creator of all of our problems.
That is, the cause of disease is internal, not external.

Unlimited potential

You are probably familiar with the concept of karma, which literally
means action. All of our actions lay down imprints on our mindstream
which have the potential to ripen at some time in the future. These
actions can be positive, negative or neutral. These karmic seeds are
never lost. The negative ones can ripen at any time in the form of
problems or sickness; the positive ones in the form of happiness,
health or success. To heal present sickness, we have to engage in
positive actions now. To prevent sickness occurring again in the
future, we have to purify, or clear, the negative karmic imprints that
remain on our mindstream. Karma is the creator of all happiness and
suffering. If we don't have negative karma we will not get sick or
receive harm from others. Buddhism asserts that everything that happens
to us now is the result of our previous actions, not only in this
lifetime but in other lifetimes. What we do now determines what will
happen to us in the future.
In terms of present and future healing, the main objective is to guard
our own actions, or karma. This requires constant mindfulness and
awareness of all the actions of our body, speech and mind. We should
avoid carrying out any actions that are harmful to ourselves and to
others. Buddhism is therefore a philosophy of total personal
responsibility. We have the ability to control our destiny, including
the state of our body and mind. Each one of us has unlimited potential
- what we have to do is develop that potential.

Healthy mind, healthy body

Why do some people get ill while others remain in the best of health?
Consider skin cancer. Of all the people who spend many hours out in the
sun, some will develop skin cancer and others will not. The external
situation is the same for all of them, but only some will be affected.
The secondary cause of the skin cancer - the sun - is external, but the
primary cause - the imprints laid down on the mindstream by previous
actions - is internal.

Also, people with similar types of cancer will often respond quite
differently to the same treatment, whether this be orthodox or
alternative. Some will make a complete recovery. Some will recover
temporarily and then develop a recurrence. Others will rapidly become
worse and die. Logically one has to look to the mind for the cause of
these differences.

Buddhism asserts that for lasting healing to occur, it is necessary to
heal not only the current disease with medicines and other forms of
treatment, but also the cause of the disease, which originates from the
mind. If we do not heal or purify the mind, the sickness and problems
will recur again and again.

This introduces the notion of "ultimate healing". By ridding the mind
of all its accumulated "garbage", all of the previously committed
negative actions and thoughts, and their imprints, we can be free of
problems and sickness permanently. We can achieve ultimate healing - a
state of permanent health and happiness. In order to heal the mind and
hence the body, we have to eliminate negative thoughts and their
imprints, and replace them with positive thoughts and imprints.

The inner enemy

The basic root of our problems and sickness is selfishness, what we can
call the inner enemy. Selfishness causes us to engage in negative
actions, which place negative imprints on the mindstream. These
negative actions can be of body, speech or mind, such as thoughts of
jealousy, anger and greed. Selfish thoughts also increase pride, which
results in feelings of jealousy towards those higher than us,
superiority towards those lower than us and competitiveness towards
equals. These feelings in turn result in an unhappy mind, a mind that
is without peace. On the other hand, thoughts and actions directed to
the well-being of others bring happiness and peace to the mind.

Conscious living, conscious dying

It is important to consider what happens to us when we die. The
Buddhist view is that at the time of death the subtle consciousness,
which carries with it all the karmic imprints from previous lives,
separates from the body. After spending up to forty-nine days in an
intermediate state between lives, the consciousness enters the
fertilised egg of its future mother at or near the moment of
conception. New life then begins. We bring into our new life a long
history of previous actions with the potential to ripen at any time or
in any of a myriad ways. The state of mind at the time of death is
vitally important and can have a considerable effect on the situation
into which we are reborn. Hence the need to prepare well for death and
to be able to approach our death with a peaceful, calm and controlled
mind. Death itself can be natural, due to exhaustion of the lifespan,
or untimely, due to certain obstacles. These obstacles arise from the
mind and can be counteracted in different ways. One method commonly
employed in Tibetan Buddhism to remove life obstacles is to save the
lives of animals that would otherwise have been killed. For example,
animals can be rescued from being slaughtered or live bait can be
purchased and released. For those with a life threatening illness, it
is important to understand that being free of that illness doesn't mean
that you will have a long life. There are many causes of death and
death can happen to anybody at any time.

Not just pills and potions

Tibetan medicine is popular and effective. It is mostly herbal
medicine, but its uniqueness lies in the fact that in the course of its
preparation it is blessed extensively with prayers and mantras, giving
it more power. It is said that taking such medicine will either result
in recovery, or, if the person is close to death, they will die quickly
and painlessly. (Another theory, based on personal experience, is that
it tastes so bad you want to recover quickly so that you can stop
taking the medicine!)

Blessed pills and blessed water are also used extensively. The more
spiritually developed the person carrying out the blessings or the
healing practices, the more powerful is the healing result or
potential. These pills often contain the relics of previous great
meditators and saints, bestowing much power on the pills.

Many Tibetan lamas actually blow on the affected part of the body to
effect healing or pain relief. I have seen a person with AIDS with
intense leg pain have his pain disappear after a lama meditated
intensely and blew on his leg for twenty minutes. Compassion is the
power that heals.

Visualisation can also be very powerful healing. One method is to
visualise a ball of white light above your head, with the light
spreading in all directions. Imagine the light spreading through your
body, completely dissolving away all sickness and problems. Concentrate
on the image of your body as completely healed and in the nature of

This type of meditation is even more powerful when combined with
visualising holy images and reciting mantras. I often tell my Christian
patients to visualise the light as Jesus, with the light emanating from

In the Tibetan tradition, there are many Buddha figures (deities) which
can be visualised while reciting their mantra. The Medicine Buddha;
Chenrezig, or Avalokiteshvara (the Buddha of Compassion); or one of the
long-life deities such as Amitabha are commonly used. Deities can be in
peaceful or wrathful aspects. The wrathful ones are often used to cure
heavy disease such as AIDS.

If you are not comfortable with these images, you can use other objects
such as crystals, or simply visualise all the universal healing energy
absorbing into you, transforming your body into light, and imagine
yourself as totally healed.

Over the centuries many people have used these methods and have
recovered from their illnesses, even from conditions such as leprosy,
paralysis and cancer. The aim of these practises is to heal the mind as
well as the body, so that the diseases or problems will not recur in
the future.
Also, many diseases are associated with spirit harm. Lamas and other
practitioners will often recite certain prayers and mantras or engage
in ceremonies to stop the spirit harm and allow the person to recover.

A seven year old girl I knew had petit-mal epilepsy as the result of
spirit harm; the epilepsy disappeared after various rituals and prayers
had been performed. Whenever she had an epileptic attack, the girl
would see a frightening apparition coming towards her. After the
initial prayers had been performed, however, her attacks lessened and
she would see a brick wall between her and the frightening figure. This
wall was the colour of a monk's robes. Eventually the attacks and
visions disappeared altogether.

In summary, we can say that the essential ingredients in the healing
process, for both the person doing the healing and the person being
healed, are compassion, faith, and pure morality.

Changing our minds

Another powerful method of healing in Tibetan Buddhism is to meditate
on the teachings known as thought transformation. These methods allow a
person to see the problem or sickness as something positive rather than
negative. A problem is only a problem if we label it a problem. If we
look at a problem differently, we can see it as an opportunity to grow
or to practice, and regard it as something positive. We can think that
having this problem now ripens our previous karma, which does not then
have to be experienced in the future.

If someone gets angry at us, we can choose to be angry in return or to
be thankful to them for giving us the chance to practice patience and
purify this particular karma. It takes a lot of practice to master
these methods, but it can be done.

It is our concepts which often bring the greatest suffering and fear.
For example, due to a set of signs and symptoms, the doctor gives the
label 'AIDS' or 'cancer'. This can cause great distress in a person's
mind, because they forget that it is only a label, that there is no
truly existent, permanent AIDS or cancer. 'Death' is another label that
can generate a lot of fear. But in reality 'death' is only a label for
what happens when the consciousness separates from the body, and there
is no real death from its own side. This also relates to our concept of
'I' and of all other phenomena. They are all just labels and have no
true, independent existence.

Lama Zopa Rinpoche, a highly realised Tibetan Lama, says that the most
powerful healing methods of all are those based on compassion, the wish
to free other beings from their suffering. The compassionate mind -
calm, peaceful, joyful and stress-free - is the ideal mental
environment for healing. A mind of compassion stops our being totally
wrapped up in our own suffering situations. By reaching out to others
we become aware of not just my pain but the pain (that is, the pain of
all beings).

Many people find the following technique powerful and effective: think
"By me experiencing this disease or pain or problem, may all the other
beings in the world be free of this disease, pain or problem" or "I am
experiencing this pain/sickness/problem on behalf of all living

One voluntarily takes on suffering in order for others to be free of
it. This is similar to the Christian concept of regarding one's
suffering as sharing the suffering of Jesus on the cross. Even death
can be used in this way: "By me experiencing death, may all other
beings be freed from the fears and difficulties of the death process."

We have to ask ourselves "What is the purpose of my life? Why do I want
to have good health and a long life?". The ultimate purpose of our life
is to be of benefit to others. If we live longer and just create more
negative karma, it is a waste of time.

Giving and taking is another powerful meditation. As you breathe in,
visualise taking the suffering and the causes of suffering from all
living beings, in the form of black smoke. When breathing in the black
smoke, visualise smashing the black rock of selfishness at your heart,
allowing compassion to manifest freely. As you breathe out, visualise
breathing out white light that brings them happiness, enjoyment and

Developing compassion is more important than having friends, wealth,
education. Why? Because it is only compassion that guarantees a happy
and peaceful mind, and it is the best thing to help us at the time of

We can use our sickness and problems in a very powerful way for
spiritual growth, resulting in the development of compassion and
wisdom. The highest development of these qualities is the full
realisation of our potential, the state of full enlightenment.
Enlightenment brings great benefit to ourselves and allows us to work
extensively for others. This is the state of ultimate healing.

I have outlined some of the concepts that are the basis of the Buddhist
philosophy on healing. Many of these methods were taught by Lama Zopa
Rinpoche at Tara Institute in Melbourne in August 1991 during the first
course given by Lama Zopa specifically for people with life-threatening

Some of these ideas may appear unusual at first, but please keep an
open mind about them. If some of the ideas appear useful to you, please
use them; if not, leave them aside.

May you achieve health and happiness.

It has all the first three seasons' tropes right there-

sickness, infection- as being afflictions stemming from the BLACK ROCK of selfishness, enslavement to desire, inhaling and exhaling awakening, the BLACK SMOKE, WHITE LIGHT (Locke, Kate and Juliet scanned, the ending) and all the rest.

Hollywood's favourite form of Buddhism via the New Age was the fundamental "value system" of LOST imo.

Friday, September 23, 2011

iPhone fireflies


Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Monday, September 19, 2011

Reading meaning into Moffat's Doctor Who: a cautionary note: "An Interview with George Markstein

"An Interview with George Markstein

Q. What do you think about the fact that it was later discussed in universities?

A. Mmmm. ... yes ... amazing and ridiculous and a sad commentary on our day and age I would have thought, that a television series has been elevated apparently - by some people into a cult. What a pathetic thing. I mean, one is delighted that it amuses people, and one is delighted that it entertains people and it's a very satisfying thing to have originated something which has left such a mark and I'm very humble and very pleased about that. But having said that, when I hear that some benighted university in Canada is holding some sort of course for its students about the significance of THE PRISONER and when I hear people pontificating about its meaning ... the thing is a bizarre and unusual television series, no more, no less. It had some good things in it. It had some ridiculous things in it. It's fun! But the PRISONER "cult" is a terrific case of The Emperor's New Clothes quite honestly and if it gives people pleasure then so be it ... but it is the Emperor's clothes ... I mean ... how do cults grow? They're frightening, I think - they are really frightening. It shows how poverty-sicken people must be to have to cling to this kind of absurdity.

I think that in many ways THE PRISONER is a tragedy ... because McGoohan became a prisoner of the series and it's never nice to see that happen to a human being, the combination of ambition, frusation, wanting to be writer, director, actor - you name it. It was sad, it was very sad I think. It did something to him that wasn't very good and it was reflected in the series and that's why the series ended like that and that's why people have said "I don't understand the end". Of course they don't understand the end, because there is no end ... I don't think even McGoohan understood the end, or if he does, well, perhaps he does, but that is the biggest tragedy of THE PRISONER that Patrick McGoohan became a Prisoner himself.

THE PRISONER is really the sum total of the work and devotion of a magnificent team and they were all towers of strength. David Tomblin, I mean, there couldn't have been a PRISONER without David, Jack Shampan, the art director - what he contributed! He was way ahead of television design. And of course the writers, naturally I'm prejudiced about the writers who played the absolute key role ... people like Tony Skene, Louis Greifer, Gerald Kelsey and others. You know, it's not the McGoohan opera, it really isn't.

McGoohan is a brilliant actor - was a brilliant actor - and without McGoohan there would have been no PRISONER, but without the art director there wouldn't have been a PRISONER, without David Tomblin there wouldn't have been a PRISONER without the scripts there wouldn't have been a PRISONER. It's not a one man show, any more than it should be a cult of deep meaning to our day and age. It is not a solo effort, it was a team effort and I was very lucky to be a member of that team and, by God, McGoohan was very lucky to have that team round him. StumbleUpon

My last word on River Song

Writer On Board - Television Tropes & Idioms

Writer On Board
Animal Man discusses this trope with his writer.

"If you want to send a message, use Western Union."
Samuel Goldwyn, renowned Hollywood producer

Obvious authorial intrusion. When the characters start behaving like idiots or against their previously established characterization because the writer damn well needs them to in order to tell their story. May also occur when a character is accused of being used just to show a particular point of view, and not because they actually have it. The high-falutin' literary term for a character designed to express the author's preferred opinions (often the Only Sane Man) is the raisonneur—here at TV Tropes the preferred term is Author Avatar. At best, the only difference is a rather heavy-handed Aesop. At worst, narrative is put aside so that an Author Filibuster can be conducted. When you agree with what the author has to say, but feel that their method of conveyance is detrimental to the work, it becomes a case of Don't Shoot the Message. Creator Breakdown occurs when personal issues within the writer's life drives the authorial intrusion. A play on "Baby on Board". Author Appeal is a specific form of this. See also Creator Breakdown, and Idiot Plot. Compare Out Of Character Moment. Contrast Bored On Board. Of course, interpretations will vary and may be wrong... StumbleUpon

Sunday, September 18, 2011

ch-batman-superman-parody | Delaware Punchline

ch-batman-superman-parody | Delaware Punchline StumbleUpon

Lawrence Miles' Doctor Who Thing: Everyone's a Destroyer of Worlds These Days

Lawrence Miles' Doctor Who Thing: Everyone's a Destroyer of Worlds These Days

Really good article by Lawrence Miles, great to see him writing again, and I agree that he is still providing the ideas for current Who and Torchwood.

Lawrence Miles is a "divisive" figure, which based on my own personal experience means that a lot of lesser people would like very much to take his ideas without having to acknowledge either his brilliance or his authorship. Personally I loved some of his books but really didn't like "Interference" at all. If I still owned it I think I'd probably read it and enjoy it, but when it came out there was no new Doctor Who show, and many people, me included, were very protective of "our" show- our own prejudices in other words. Now, I can see just how ahead of his time Lawrence Miles really was, and how many royalties are owed to him by the BBC... Although they would crush him with a work for hire argument no doubt. StumbleUpon



Thursday, September 15, 2011

VonShollywood PETE VON SHOLLY PRESENTS The Flying Fuck!

VonShollywood PETE VON SHOLLY PRESENTS The Flying Fuck! StumbleUpon

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Steamtown: recent pages


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Sensation without Orientation

This is about Dark Knight world, but it applies with great relevance to Series 6 (and Series 5) Doctor Who.

In the Cut, Part I: Shots in the Dark (Knight) from Jim Emerson on Vimeo. StumbleUpon

You Know What Doctor Who Really Needs?

A space yenta.


Internet troll Sean Duffy jailed for posting abuse about dead teenagers | Information, Gadgets, Mobile Phones News & Reviews |

Internet troll Sean Duffy jailed for posting abuse about dead teenagers | Information, Gadgets, Mobile Phones News & Reviews |

I wonder how many more cyberstalkers and other human trash will use aspergers as their excuse for defaming, stalking, bullying or just being cowards online? StumbleUpon

Monday, September 12, 2011

Doctor Who: Tom Baker nails it

“It never occurred to me that I’d be typecast, although I was. And I never thought of the role as a commercial product, because I was… well, I was playing this slightly messianic alien. He isn’t violent, he doesn’t get his leg over the girl, he doesn’t steal, and he’s rather wry, and adorable, and mysterious. He’s lived for 900 years or something. He lives the life of the old patriarchs of the Old Testament. That’s not commercial. He’s special.” 

- Tom Baker

artwork: source StumbleUpon

Is George Lucas the plastic surgery addict of film?

The first Star Wars film, appropriately enough, STAR WARS, was one of those seminal movies- not original, not well acted and not even very good- but so different from what preceded it (with the exception of its special effects which were pure 2001 and Gerry Anderson) that it captured the imagination.

Kids everywhere played Star Wars in the playground and a star was born.

However, like so many 1970s icons, Star Wars has become addicted to plastic surgery, and its third world plastic surgeon is not from some hispanic hellhole - well actually, he is, he comes from San Anselmo- anyway, the perverted plastic surgeon committing blaphemy on what the USA may misguidedly see as a national treasure is, in one of those twists that self-obsessed authors think of as "brilliant" and the rest of us think of as "obvious"- none other than George Lucas himself! Dun dun DUN!

It's true. Lucas has hacked away at all of the films, especially the first one, tinkering "like a master craftsman" as one particularly idiotic American geek website put it. Unsurprising that they didn't realise- master craftsmen don't tinker. They get it right first time.

The changes referred to are of course the digital insertions and editing of the original films, mainly to add entirely unneeded scenes and "special" (in the sense that someone who can't go to the toilet on their own is special) effects.

One of the earliest alterations was also one of the most offensive- dubbing out all of the English actors, in the process replacing the dulcet tones of multi award winning world class actors with the awful schmackting of anonymous voice actors. Billy West those guys weren't.

Since then, the Star Wars "franchise" (it's all about the money) has definitely joined the hideous Catwoman as one of those oddities of editing that has transcended taste and entered the "only in America" museum of embarassment.

Meanwhile George Pal, Ray Harryhausen- no re-editing- and every second of their films is as good as ever.

It certainly makes you think.

No it doesn't.

Star Wars is part of what I refer to as "fart subculture". It no longer exists for any positive reason, it's just... there, like the biological side effects of eating. For the saddoes addicted to it, I'm sure it provides what they think of as culture, but in the end, Star Wars isn't sustenance, it's the fart that follows it. StumbleUpon

Steamtown - the Zoomways

Zoomways are stable wormholes between worlds. Their appearance is basically that of a whirlpool in mid-air, which opens into a tunnel of a particular colour or shade.

The known types of Zoomways include:

The Paisley Zoomway - allowing travel between different parallel worlds and different time periods. An extremely powerful entity resembling a meso-American deity and known as The Paisley God claims dominion over this Zoomway and all who try and use it.

The Black Zoomway - leading into the Realm of Death. No one can pass through the Zoomway and remain Alive, although they might not necessarily emerge Dead, either.

The Rose Zoomway - named for its resemblance to pink-red roses and their spiked green stems, the interior of this Zoomway is shot through with those colours. It is used to travel into the past and future of the parallel universe in which you currently reside.

The Jade Zoomway - this Zoomway leads to the Asiatic-seeming Court of the August Personage in Jade and other celestial entities claiming to be Old Earth Gods. There is something odd about them though, and when encountered by Quo all was not as it seemed at the Court...

More Zoomways in another update to come!

Zoomways originally appeared in the Jonathan Nolan written game 'New Heaven, New Earth' created in 1982, published in 1985.

(c) Flying Tiger Comics 2011, all rights reserved worldwide. StumbleUpon

Steamtown: Overview

Steamtown is an ongoing comicbook. It's already being published digitally and it's going to be published in print in large graphic novels, each independent but certainly interlinked, no different from a book series. Except of course with pictures.

Steamtown, the eponymous city, is a metropolis rising out of a desert planet. The entire planet's terrain is shattered into concentric circles and ripples around the city, and the city itself has two seas- Lowsea and Highsea- each of which is an artificial dimensionally stabilised circulating marine environment in a toroidal metal trough many kilometres in diameter. Like the rest of Steamtown, the seas are maintained using Zoomways, stable manipulable wormholes once used by God Level Aliens (GLA) of unknown species but now fallen into disrepair. The Zoomways are of various colours. A separate article will cover them.

Into the milieu of Steamtown comes Quo the Traveller, inventor of the original Time Machine, and his current travelling companion, Prudence Brown.

When Quo first set out on his adventures he wrongly believed that there was only one Earth, with a "timeline" extending from his present into the past and the future. At an as yet undisclosed earlier point in his adventures Quo was forced to understand that in fact there are a myriad of parallel universes, many of which have an Earth, or equivalent planet. And each parallel has its own history, or "continuity", and its own destiny.

(c) Flying Tiger Comics 2011 all rights reserved worldwide. StumbleUpon

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Bale Batman stream of unconsciousness


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Latest webcomic page for Steamtown

Steamtown - Into Futurity

Into Futurity StumbleUpon

Friday, September 9, 2011

Top searches by country for Flying Tiger Comics

Italy - transexual, tgirl, schoolgirl, tiger comics
USA - Avengers, Captain America, secret team, Tintin
Belgium - tgirl, ligne claire, Tintin, Doctor Who
UK - Doctor Who, Lawrence Miles (wtf?), Tintin, Tory StumbleUpon

Thursday, September 8, 2011

For hopefully the LAST time:

" To sin by silence, when they should protest, makes cowards of men."

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

It was not said by Lincoln. It is from a poem published in the 1900s.

Hopefully this meme will spread and Ella rather than Lincoln will receive due credit. StumbleUpon

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Doctor Who: The Girl Who Waited


Victorian Star Trek | HOW TO BE A RETRONAUT

Victorian Star Trek | HOW TO BE A RETRONAUT StumbleUpon

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Avengers (And Stan Lee) Assemble In Photos From New York City Set « Spinoff Online – TV, Film and Entertainment News Daily

Avengers (And Stan Lee) Assemble In Photos From New York City Set « Spinoff Online – TV, Film and Entertainment News Daily

Avengers (And Stan Lee) Assemble
In Photos From New York City Set

Filming of The Avengers moved from Cleveland, which doubled as Stuttgart, Germany, and New York City, to the real New York City, where scenes were shot over the weekend in midtown. Photos from Central Park provide us with a look at the largest public gathering yet of the ensemble cast, with Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston and Stellan Skarsgård all on set (with director Joss Whedon). Warning: Potential spoilers, naturally!
We also get the clearest images to date of Renner’s Hawkeye costume, as well as an indication of Stan Lee’s cameo in The Avengers. As we can see from the photo, Lee and Evans are seated at different tables outside a coffee house, where Worst Previews reports Evans’ Steve Rogers is joined by an older man, believed to be a fellow World War II veteran.
According to The Daily Mail, there were several scenes staged around midtown, including a “disaster area” with burned-out cars and piled-up taxis, and, outside a building, wreckage of what’s believed to be the Avengers’ quinjet.
Many more photos from the New York City set can be found at Comic Book Movie (here, here, here and here) and The Daily Mail.
The Avengers, which opens May 4, 2012, also stars Samuel L. Jackson, Clark Gregg and Cobie Smulders. StumbleUpon

For Grandad.


Doctor Who: what I think of the "We" and "Not we" dichotomy.

The ultimate paradox of Doctor Who: the elitist nobody.


Doctor Who: Night Terrors. It was naff, good for a laugh


Doctor Who: The Wisdom of Crowds

There is an ongoing argument in Doctor Who fandom. Well, several in fact. The one I am discussing in this post is the Moffat era "not feeling as good as RTD".

I personally loathed some of the RTD era, and so did many other people. But we still watched, still shed a tear, still bought the DVDs. He put in way too much homosexual agenda crap, he pushed soap opera and Doctor as Jesus stuff that is just inappropriate, but overall his seasons of Doctor Who were very pretty and exciting.

For me, when people say that Moffat's Who is lacking something, I think the lack is of that sort of glitter. The end of the David Tennant era hit some astonishing ratings, and it wasn't all freak of circumstance stuff. RTD went bigger and bigger for each end of season story. Not just with the ridiculous plots, many of which are insulting to the intelligence, but with the brilliantly inclusive bright and shiny staging. It was relatable, entertaining and it looked good.

So far Moffat's Who has not consistently looked good. And it isn't because it's all dark and spooky. Dark, as in ill lit, definitely. Dark as in evoking a sinister atmosphere, laughably not most of the time.

More on this later. StumbleUpon

Doctor Who demotivational posters

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