If you read the extended Comments on the previous post, you will know that Ben Mack shares a respect for RAW (Robert Anton Wilson) and Bucky Fuller, and others that this blog references (like Hakim Bey, or Kurt Vonnegut) - and for honesty in communication.
Poker Without Cards
For fellow MLA students interested in treating Poker Without Cards as a text for our Reading Group, but who feel resistance to Ben as a ‘marketeer’ – I recommend taking an hour to watch/listen to this interview. The book does not refer to all his thinking, but covers a period when BM found himself incarcerated in a mental institution after a breakdown, and got casually informed that he ‘was’ a paranoid schizophrenic. Later that diagnosis got retracted (because he rebuilt himself in a way that someone with that diagnosis couldn’t have done). He didn’t receive any kind of apology. It brings to mind Timothy Leary’s incarceration for ‘dangerous thinking’ – and also the approach that R.D.Laing took to people in similar states of mind, back in The Sixties.
Go to Grey Lodge for a pirate PDF edition Or Second Attention.
[spoiler alert: Lulu Review of the book]
You could also research Ben Mack’s marketing lectures (1h20m), and books, and stuff, but that might set off your prejudices. Some of us have remarked on the fact that he set up a website entitled “What Would Bill Hicks Have Said”, and have countered it with Bill’s quotes about people in advertising. Well, BM makes a distinction (in this video) between marketing and advertising. I leave you to tease out the distinction. Having nothing in particular I wish to sell, I don't know how he can help me with his seminars (I don't even have much desire to 'make more money') but if he can use all those skills to get fresh drinking water to everyone on the planet, then I think he deserves all the support he can get. (rant over)
Genius comes in many forms
It seems that BM counts as some kind of ‘genius’ and they sometimes prove uncomfortable as companions, and often get 'misunderstood'. Think of Orson Welles, maybe.
Please bear in mind that what I write here remains a personal opinion, and not a ‘policy statement’ that the MLA Admin supports – this blog has no direct affiliation with the management group of MLA or RAW’s literary estate. You can see it as a critical fanzine if you like.
The Maybe Logic Academy
The Maybe Logic Academy attracts people fascinated by a wide range of subjects and approaches (magick, NLP, intelligence increase, conspiracy theory, psychosomatic medicine, creativity, etc) – we don’t always agree, but we got given one rule (just the one) by RAW when he set this place up online where we could study with him (and other tutors), and interact with each other - and which forms some kind of legacy.
If you can’t achieve tolerance, at least attempt courtesy.
Such an approach to debate still seems rare (if not unique!) in online discussion spaces, and remains one of the reasons that I still spend many unpaid hours promoting and supporting it (even with the current incarnation of the forum 4.0, which has bugs which annoy some of the participants).
I have failed several times in my own attempts at courtesy, especially around the area of magic/magick (which Ben lucidly elucidates in the interview), but have learned from that, and continue to attempt to improve my communication.
Please do not find any significance in the fact that my avatar shares initials with Ben Mack! I remain an entirely separate entity. It’s just a coincidence, just a coincidence (repeat this mantra after me “It’s just a coincidence!”)
PS: This seems like a good place to throw a link to Bobby's summary of Rushkoff's Technologies of Persuasion course - over at DeOxy.