tag: Brahmanism

The Exegesis: A camouflaged Zebra in the world

The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick
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October 1978

Dick examines an epistemological argument about whether there is an actual external universe or just a universe in our mind that would be indistinguishable from an external one. He relates this to Brahman who is making us think we experience the world. What we perceive as evil is actually just the interests of the macrobrain which don’t necessarily align with our own. It has to be this way though otherwise existence would cease.

He wonders if the world and Zebra are two modes of the same thing: Zebra is awake and the world is asleep. Zebra has been in the world all along, playing dead, camouflaged until it wakes up. 

Dick embraces his love of Christ and his anticipation of the return of the rightful king. 

He reiterates that no time has passed since the time of Thomas. Someone has just made it appear that way. He thinks perhaps there is an objective reality. When it appears to change our brains perceive this as the passing of time, but he can’t figure out who is responsible for tricking our brains this way.

The Exegesis: Brahman’s games, information as light, and who is Thomas?

August 1978 or later

Dick is convinced the universe must be a hologram and then he decides once again that Brahman is behind it all. He addresses a short note to Brahman letting him know he is aware of Brahman’s games. For some reason Dick is concerned about the physicality of this unreal world. Where exactly is it? He imagines it projected as a hologram on some sort of matrix. This is a joint effort between Brahman and Atman (the Hindu concept of an individual spiritual essence), and so when Dick saw the Jesus fish necklace in 2-74 his own personal Atman projected Rome 45 A.D. and Brahman filled in the details in a kind of feedback loop. 

The brain is disassembling and absorbing the BIP, and Dick examines the closed system and the push-pull between the brain and its cells or parts. He stumbles onto the idea that the matrix resembles the double helix of a DNA strand. Information might travel on this conduit using light, with Zebra on the red frequency, which means Dick was able to see this infrared light. 

He tries to figure out who “Thomas” is: himself in a previous life in Rome 45 A.D. or someone else from a previous time inside his head. He leans toward the idea that he has multiple personalities, but does that mean he is in Thomas’s head? Everything since “Acts” is a false time created by the BIP, so Thomas wrote Flow My Tears to show what really exists. Thomas has masterminded all of the themes of Dick’s writing from the beginning, but Thomas, like other possible Christians from that era, wants to remain a secret. It’s fascinating to me how Dick is all over the place from Brahman to the certainty of Thomas in only a few pages.

The Exegesis: A time-traveler named Thomas and a hypnagogic message

February 1978

Zebra and the holographic world are both made up of some kind of thinking electricity that can shape shift into anything. Who or what is responsible for this reality? Is it the physical noosphere or is it in our mind? Dick leans toward something physical like Brahman. Another layer exists beyond 70 A.D. which Dick calls the abyss. 

Dick decides he is a time-traveler from 70 A.D. called Thomas and the PKD personality is just a mask. He thinks that Ubik the entity must have guided him to write Ubik the novel because where else would he have gotten the idea. It came about through a form of automatic writing. This makes that book a scripture of sorts along with A Maze of Death and Flow my Tears

In a hypnagogic state the spirit speaks to him and says they are “responsible for low-level decisions which can be overruled.” He assumes “they” refers to God. This means man’s relationship to reality is flipped. We become the objects in a living world. Dick sees this as a truly radical new understanding as it reveals God and reorganizes man’s place in the cosmic hierarchy. 

At Dick’s greatest point of desperation the being behind the veil let Dick see beyond it. His novels were a way to prepare him for his 3-74 experience and now he feels free. He ends this section by cryptically saying what comes next has something to do with Mexico.

The Exegesis: A fifth columnist & a dead end?

January 1978

Dick speculates the entity transcends all religions. It is Shiva/Cernunnos/Dionysus/Christ/St. Sophia. Whatever currently rules our world has usurped it from the rightful God and marginalized him, but now he is everywhere.

Dick sees himself as a subversive fifth columnist, although he wasn’t aware of this when he was writing his earlier novels. His later books and stories (Flow my Tears, “Faith of Our Fathers,” Ubik, A Maze of Death and Our Friends from Frolix 8) included encoded commands that he didn’t know about and people only think were added deliberately.

He reinterprets his earlier idea of retrograde time. Since we can’t remember the future we must have faith to see that “evil” events will be used ultimately for good purposes. 

We are caught in a web of illusory images just as the Brahmans believed the Divine Mother Kali spun the illusion of reality. 

Dick says he has reached a dead-end with his exegesis (doubtful since we have over 600 pages to go). It’s a little melodramatic here, but he says this has been a failure so far because he still doesn’t understand or remember why we are cut off from God. Every answer just turns up more questions.

The Exegesis: Brahman, an alternate Earth & the form-mimicker

January 1977

Dick has evidently begun exploring outside of the Bible for answers. He is now convinced the divine entity which he encountered was Brahman from the ancient religion that was practiced in India during the Vedic period (1500—500 BC). Brahman (from my in depth study of the first line in its Wikipedia entry) is the ultimate reality in the universe. Dick compares Christ to Hindu’s Vishnu and calls Brahmanism his new religion. 

The theme of all of Dick’s novels has been the idea that reality is not what it appears to be and he is not who or what he thinks he is. His 3-74 experience verified this. He believes what he saw when one world faded into the other may have been an alternate Earth. He tries to admit he may never be able to explain what happened to him. He consults the I Ching and interprets what it tells him to mean he escaped illusion and reached reality. 

He thinks God may have tinkered with his past resulting in an alternate world for him. Where does this old world, the Black Iron world, exist? He examines different ways to model our world in relation to the Black Iron Prison. 

Perhaps something has been mimicking the true world. Dick names this form-mimicker Deus Absconditus and speculates he was possessed by it in 3-74 due to his regimen of vitamins which allowed him to see the mimicry. Reinterpreting the Bible with this knowledge of the form-mimicker reveals a new way of understanding the puzzles of the Scripture.