The Black Iron Prison

What I happened upon in a psychedelic nightmare. A place that seemed like another world, it seemed to me that my room had been trasported to that place, for when I looked out the window, it was like nothing known on Earth: different scenery, different sky. The first time I ended up there, there were bars on my window—which was the first thing I noticed, my window on earth being conspicuously bar free. There also seemed to be a grill on the window, at different points, which makes one wonder about the fluidity of that “reality” as a thing to be perceived. If you want to see what kind of atmosphere I’m talking about, go fetch a copy of Hieronymous Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights and look in the third panel. I don’t know where the activity in the front is happening, but look in the far back, at the non-descript black building: I was inside there.

I also remember distinctly that there, in the dim red sky, somewhere above, there was some kind of Watcher. I don’t know what it was watching for, I don’t think. I once had it right on top of me, on one visit, and I was prevented from thinking that it was Satan, just like I was prevented from thinking that the Black Iron Prison was Hell. Philip K. Dick thought that the Prison was what the world actually looked like, in a substratum. There was an opposite to the Prison, he wrote, which he called the Palm Tree Garden (which I call the Oasis). But if the Prison is what reality looked like, why wouldn’t the Oasis be in there somewhere, in the upper strata? Paradise and Hell: we probably have the idea of them all wrong, as wrong as the ancients, who put Paradise in the sky and Hell in the ground.

If you ever see it, you’ll know it. You might not have had the words to call it properly by name, but you’d know it like a heart attack. Someone described it as the far future mixed with the ancient. Everything, all the buildings, the whole landscape, is black (hence the name). I remember looking out into the expanse the first time, and I don’t think it was a hallucination superimposed upon the buildings that existed in real life, I think I really noticed that: this black city is not where I was; I am somewhere else. Where the joins were at least on some of the architecture, it was as if black claws bound one corner shut, clasped the boundary between floors together. Evil, all of it. Except I wasn’t allowed to think that, either.

We who do see it, we can break free of it forever. Philip K. Dick was freed when Nixon resigned as President: this was the world freed from the Prison outside. I was freed the last time I ever saw it when I dropped acid, upon a short missive from secret Christians: the whisper of, “Walt Disney is God”: this was the world freed from the Prison inside. It might not be in grand gestures such as these, but as sure as there is a God who is love, you will find an escape from the Prison if ever you venture too far into the Dark Wood, to the city on the other side, where no sun ever shines, where the stars flee the dark red smoke.



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God in the Age of Iron

The Black Iron Prison was the hidden architecture of what was called the Age of Iron. Which was what basically the Old Testament covered: the wrath of God, who was a jealous God. The Age of Gold is what Jesus Christ came to bring about: the God of mercy, the God who is love. One might well wonder, just exactly how is it that the first God is the same God as the second? There was one theory a friend of mine handed me, that when God came down to Earth and lived life as a man, He at that point understood the human condition, and sort of mellowed out. But aren’t we told that God does not change? How is it that the God who is love rained down fire and brimstone and obliterated Sodom and Gomorrah?

One idea that might lead us somewhere is the Book of Job. This is where God and Satan (the Satan who at that time seemed to be a minor functionary in His court) made a wager at the expense of Job. Satan, in stages, completely wrecks the man: kills all his children, breaks his bank, and even covers him in painful sores. At the end, when Job is at the end of his rope—complaining how it’s not fair—God shows up and asks him, where were you when I laid down the foundations of the world? Basically, oh, do you really know so much as to criticise Me? What one is careful to mark, however, was that at no time does He bring up Satan as the culprit of his pain. God takes all the credit for all that happens to Job, good and bad—telling him, I know better, I know why.

What if there are other “judgments of God” that aren’t actually Him, in just the same way? It’s an interesting take. He would have known about them all, but He had delegated certain authority to other entities, who were not “all love”, that did all the bad things we associate with that unforgiving Age of Iron… But we can investigate another avenue, which is to follow what Jesus Christ said about divorce. That Moses gave divorce to the people because of the hardness of their hearts. Down that simple road of thought, the trip leads to the stop that it was us that changed, not God. Something happened to change us, to change the whole equation of the world: and it was Jesus Christ. Not just what we observed on Earth, but a hidden act, within the sign of Jonah.

Harshness, in the Age of Iron, was the only way things got done. We were all in the Prison, which, indeed, was not the work of God. The Black Iron Prison was what the world in its entirety was contained within. We had to play by Prison rules. And if we were going to be like that, God was going to be hard on us—not the least reason of which was because we deserved it. Then, something amazing happened: Jesus who is Christ came here, and He broke the vicious feedback loop, and breached the Iron. And the breach was like the tiny mustard seed, which took and is taking 2000 years to blossom. For a thousand years is as a day to God, and the Christ was two days in the earth. The breach finally bubbled up to the top in 1974 in the resignation of Richard Nixon—a king deposed by tradesmen, without a drop of blood being shed. Hallelujah.

But now, as we are still left with much of the trappings of darkness, let us be ready to understand the world in a greater vision than was apportioned Job: the Iron was not of God. You can believe in a God who is all love, and that includes both mercy and justice. Many things He took credit for, and blame, many misunderstandings he patiently suffered until the time came as to remove from us the judging of God by man. Whether we be ready or not for the Age of Gold to come, it comes. In certain places it has come already, but not nearly enough. And some still work as if the Iron has not broken, but we know better. Light has already peeked in. Hearken: the Beginning is near.



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The Stage

The War in Heaven could not be won while the world was in the grip of the Black Iron Prison. I imagine it was similar to how in the ’90s we couldn’t think beyond the year 1999. 2000 and on: there was a mental block, a psychological barrier that prevented us in seeing past that magic number. The prison was in a sense a mental construct, contained in the unseen world, gone uunnoticed by most everyone who lived regular lives within it. But we were all prisoners, you see. And even when we break free, habit still sometimes goes by the old pathways that had been dictated to us while we were still prisoners.

How it came to be that all the world was entombed within the Black Iron is another story, but there we were. (It has something to do with the myth of Adam and Eve, if you want a hint of what that story may be.) And there was the fact that the Prison was as like an eternal realm: after all, it was Hell. This touches on the salvation of Jesus Christ: that we all deserved to be damned, according to the Law, and the substance of such consequence was that Iron. And only by obeying the Law to the letter could Christ have gained victory over the Law. Nothing short of absolute perfection.

We know that only when we are squarely dealing with at least the trappings of the Age of Gold can our minds be free to pursue the grander things: needless even to say that the psychology required in the attempt has to be available. When we spend the last ounce of strength to grow a subsistence level crop, we have no other, higher, work we can accomplish. Only when we have an atmosphere of peace and education, in a society of opportunities, only then can we truly be free. The possibility, the potential needs to exist. Only when we are fed can we think about justice.

The War in Heaven happened when it could, and it happened “within” us: Philip K. Dick and me, the twins—when we had had experience of things large and small that was in and of the world. We had some prerequisites down when we were picked. Phil was a voracious reader, and I had the internet, both of us with a longing to comprehend the deeper things of the world. Such research and literature as to be useful in the fight could only have become so available as the Age of Gold emerged out of the Iron. Information is a change in potential: in knowing, what is possible changes. (And the universe, too, is made of information.)

Someone said that we must state the problem in a way that allows for a solution. Throughout the landscape of religious texts, philosophy, and whatever else, PKD was searching out a site where the War could be won. That means not only finding out all the myths that the world may hold (and many could be found out in the late 1970s), but also to properly interpret them. For meaning is effect. Like having a hunk of flint we could use it as a weapon, but sharpen it to point and you have quite something else. Nothing was mentioned about the War, in Phil’s frameworks, for Satan was to be ignorant of this purpose—thus Phil himself was not to know. For his own good. For everyone’s good.

(to continue…)



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The Stage (cont’d)

Philip K. Dick saw it, in the year where he had his “pink light experience”, in 1974. That year, Richard Nixon resigned from his office as United States President. And Philip K. Dick interpreted this event correctly: the world broken free of the Black Iron Prison. That was step one of two. The second breaching of the iron I beheld on Mother’s Day 1991, and that was in the unseen world, what I call the Halospace. Why these needed to happen before the War in Heaven could be concluded: this was when victory was snatched from the darkness. It was possible to win! This was God acting in our world, having reached the top from the very bottom. For PKD saw that God had been present in the trash layer of the world. Having been the greatest, he earned this greatness by working His way from the lowest reaches to the very highest.

And by God, I mean the Son of God, who being the Son shares the same nature as the Father: there is only one God, and Jesus Christ is Him: in the beginning the Logos was with God, and the Logos was God. For in him was the way that the entirety of God entered the world, and not just words carried by the Spirit, or even what was known as the “angel of God”. He was the only free man, for by his actions was he the only of the innocent of this world. His reward from the Father was that he could choose any number and count them also innocent: any number. Thus salvation or damnation is simply him saying, “I know him,” or “I know him not.”

PKD wrote in his Exegesis how the books he had written proved to be useful in understanding his new visions, in 1974. Indeed, we were talking about “creating” realities in those writings. Or the nature of reality, what that might be, and how that related to our perception of any and everything. This was his specialty. And so he would write 8,000 handwritten pages trying to get to the bottom of things. Which unfortunately was not his to do. As written previous, his job was to set the stage. It was for me to see the play acted out on it, and with myself in fact to be one of the actors of said play. The powerful play.

And that was the thing: these possibilities that Phil wrote down: we could think in those directions because we no longer were shackled by the Black Iron. There’s an old hacker adage: “Information wants to be free.” Essentially, that was the victory: the information was finally free. The gnostics thought that salvation was not by faith, but by a (secret) knowledge. They were onto something, even if that strictly was not true. Christians sort of concur, if they say that only those who hear and accept the message of Christ can be saved. The fall of the Black Iron Prison was that the salvific knowledge were now available to all, baptised or not. And this is the work of the Son of God: it was available retroactively.

I have high hopes for the future. I don’t believe that the Black Iron Prison—functionally, at least—has been abolished for everyone on Earth personally. Just like the War in Heaven rages on in many people’s Halospace, even if they are unaware that it is there. Just like Satan still claims minds and souls even after he was long defeated on the cross. This is the mystery of Eternity. We still have work to do, here on God’s green Earth. It may be just that the going of it is not as hard as it used to be. Understand that we are nowhere near the end. Instead, rejoice, indeed: the Beginning is near!



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Excerpt

This is an excerpt from my book, Memoirs from the War in Heaven, about the Black Iron Prison. (Have you ever seen it?) And I will acknowledge that back then I did do drugs, but man, how I would pay for that later:

This one time, I was beginning to psychedelicize and was looking through some interesting subversive material in the form of The Book of the SubGenius; when I was about to snicker about something therein, I happened upon the words, “Don’t Laugh,” and wow: the Conspiracy had suddenly infiltrated. Like my mind were being read by nefarious forces. I was listening to the radio, but what I heard now was some simplistic tune-like simulation, not real music but an aping of what music was in reality. And I could swear the “song” lyrics were talking to me, or about me. Trips don’t normally go like this, folks. I looked out the window: holy crap on a stick! Where did these bars outside my window come from? WTF is outside?!? This isn’t Pittsburgh! This isn’t Earth! I got the sense that my room were one small cell in an immense building, shut off from everything. I had been transported, somehow, elsewhere.

The sky was dim with red, and was there an oppressive presence of something above we didn’t want the attention of. (We dared not whisper the word, “evil.”) All the buildings were black, a landscape the likes of which I had never seen before. Alien. Like the ancient crossed with the future in architecture, and sinister, iron tortured into the shape of claws at the joints. Black, all black everywhere. Other people had seen this place too: they called it the Black Iron Prison.

That was the first time I thought I had been removed to another dimension, but it was certainly not to be the last. That first time, I believed I had literally died and had gone to Hell. It was Hell. Not that I was in any pain, but the sensation, the atmosphere was exactly how Dante put it: abandon all hope, ye who enter here. The land of utter despair. I imagined how they in the waking world were finding my body. I had thought that I had leaned too far back and crashed my head against the glass, so uncoordinated I had been in my wasted state. So this was going to be my eternity? It was as if my room had been taken with me in it and installed in the netherworld. In the bad place.

That year, one of my posters was Hieronymus Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights, hanging up right above my bed; and on one of my stays in the ’Prison, I looked at the face of the Tree Man in the third panel (which was entitled, “Hell”), and I knew that that was where I was. Bosch had seen it too, apparently. If you look in the rear of that panel, there was that immense building where I had been prisoner. I did happen to get out all the times I was there, 3 maybe 4 times, and there were some weird productions on how that was accomplished each of those times, but it was the very last time which was the most interesting.

Once again, I looked out the window to that alien expanse. Black? Check. Iron? Check. Prison? Check. I didn’t feel worried in the least. Completely old hat. I was sitting in my chair, I think it was, doing something on my computer. (How exactly was it Hell when I had a working Macintosh IIci?) Then came a voice, a whisper, that let me in on the joke, told me the secret to it all: “Walt Disney is God.” And with that, BOOM! Not just me was it that were freed from the ’Prison, but everyone was now free, according to the landscape I could see with my mind’s eye, my eye into Halospace. (That was the beginning, I later realized, of the free floating apparitions of people, living and dead, whom I would interact with.) Note that this trip, too, I would come down from, but my psyche was by then quite tweaked. I was more LSD than man.



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