As every other young nerdling I’ve gobbled up Lovecraft’s stories at the tender age or eleven or twelve and I’m surprised and a little confused how much of an impact Lovecraft has in pop (oc)culture. Eric Davis wrote an interesting article called Calling Cthulhu, published in Darklore, which talks about Lovecraft’s writing and it’s relation to chaos magic. Well worth taking the time to read, if you are, you know, into this kind of thing. Here’s a snip:
This phenomenon is made all the more intriguing by the fact that Lovecraft himself was a “mechanistic materialist” philosophically opposed to spirituality and magic of any kind. Accounting for this discrepancy is only one of many curious problems raised by the apparent power of Lovecraftian magic. Why and how do these pulp visions “work”? What constitutes the “authentic” occult? How does magic relate to the tension between fact and fable? As I hope to show, Lovecraftian magic is not a pop hallucination but an imaginative and coherent “reading” set in motion by the dynamics of Lovecraft’s own texts, a set of thematic, stylistic, and intertextual strategies that constitute what I call Lovecraft’s Magick Realism.
Now, as you might have noticed, my reading in esoterica and magick has somewhat lapsed over the last couple of months. One, well, the main reason for that is that my job got pretty…absorbing starting last January and April was one ratfucker of a month. So I’ve been reading more leisurely fare over the last couple of months, like the excellent Cimarron Rose by James Lee Burke and The Heart of the Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick. And I’ve finally succumbed and started reading The Corrections. We’ll see how that goes, usually if a book gets that much hype I avoid it, which is a leftover reflex from when I was sixteen.
No worries, Crowley, Hine, and LaVey are not gone, but they are taking a little nap right now.